(31 quotes found)

“How happy the lot of the mathematician! He is judged solely by his peers, and the standard is so high that no colleague or rival can ever win a reputation he does not deserve. No cashier writes a letter to the press complaining about the incomprehensibility of Modern Mathematics and comparing it unfavorably with the good old days when mathematicians were content to paper irregularly shaped rooms and fill bathtubs without closing the waste pipe.”

W. H. Auden

“Guided only by their feeling for symmetry, simplicity, and generality . . . creative mathematicians now, as in the past, are inspired by the art of mathematics rather than by any prospect of ultimate usefulness.”

Eric Temple Bell

“Our account does not rob mathematicians of their science, by disproving the actual existence of the infinite in the direction of increase, in the sense of the untraceable. In point of fact they do not need the infinite and do not use it. They postula”

Aristotle

“The greatest mathematicians, as Archimedes, Newton, and Gauss, always united theory and applications in equal measure.”

Felix Klein

“Physicists are more like avant-garde composers, willing to bend traditional rules... Mathematicians are more like classical composers.”

Brian Greene

“Mathematicians have tried in vain to this day to discover some order in the sequence of prime numbers, and we have reason to believe that it is a mystery into which the human mind will never penetrate.”

Leonhard Euler

“The mathematician, carried along on his flood of symbols, dealing apparently with purely formal truths, may still reach results of endless importance for our description of the physical universe.”

Karl Pearson

“It is easier to square the circle than to get round a mathematician.”

Augustus de Morgan

“It would be better for the true physics if there were no mathematicians on earth.”

Daniel Bernoulli

“It is amusing to discover, in the twentieth century, that the quarrels between two lovers, two mathematicians, two nations, two economic systems, usually assumed insoluble in a finite period should exhibit one mechanism, the semantic mechanism of identification -- the discovery of which makes universal agreement possible, in mathematics and in life.”

Alfred Korzybski