Quotes about the truth

A collection of quotes on the topic of truth.

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Walter Raleigh photo

„What dependence can I have on the alleged events of ancient history, when I find such difficulty in ascertaining the truth regarding a matter that has taken place only a few minutes ago, and almost in my own presence!“

—  Walter Raleigh English aristocrat, writer, poet, soldier, courtier, spy, and explorer 1554 - 1618
Upon receiving discrepant accounts from the participants in a recent quarrel below his window. Robert Chambers, Testimony: its Posture in the Scientific World http://books.google.com/books?id=pChcAAAAQAAJ& (1859) p. 12

Max Planck photo
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François Viète photo

„In mathematics there is a certain way of seeking the truth, a way which Plato is said first to have discovered and which was called "analysis" by Theon and was defined by him as "taking the thing sought as granted and proceeding by means of what follows to a truth which is uncontested"; so, on the other hand, "synthesis" is "taking the thing that is granted and proceeding by means of what follows to the conclusion and comprehension of the thing sought." And although the ancients set forth a twofold analysis, the zetetic and the poristic, to which Theon's definition particularly refers, it is nevertheless fitting that there be established also a third kind, which may be called rhetic or exegetic, so that there is a zetetic art by which is found the equation or proportion between the magnitude that is being sought and those that are given, a poristic art by which from the equation or proportion the truth of the theorem set up is investigated, and an exegetic art by which from the equation set up or the proportion, there is produced the magnitude itself which is being sought. And thus, the whole threefold analytic art, claiming for itself this office, may be defined as the science of right finding in mathematics.... the zetetic art does not employ its logic on numbers—which was the tediousness of the ancient analysts—but uses its logic through a logistic which in a new way has to do with species [of number]...“

—  François Viète French mathematician 1540 - 1603
Ch. 1 as quoted by Jacob Klein, Greek Mathematical Thought and the Origin of Algebra (1934-1936) Appendix.

50 Cent photo
Pope John Paul II photo
C.G. Jung photo
Mikhail Bulgakov photo

„The tongue may hide the truth but the eyes—never!“

—  Mikhail Bulgakov, The Master and Margarita
Context: The tongue can conceal the truth, but the eyes never! You're asked an unexpected question, you don't even flinch, it takes just a second to get yourself under control, you know just what you have to say to hide the truth, and you speak very convincingly, and nothing in your face twitches to give you away. But the truth, alas, has been disturbed by the question, and it rises up from the depths of your soul to flicker in your eyes and all is lost. Book One in 'Nikanor Ivanovich's Dream', B/O

Max Heindel photo
Aleister Crowley photo
Robert Owen photo

„My life was not useless; I gave important truths to the world, and it was only for want of understanding that they were disregarded. I have been ahead of my time.“

—  Robert Owen Welsh social reformer 1771 - 1858
Deathbed statement (November 1858), in response to a church minister who asked if he regretted wasting his life on fruitless projects; as quoted in Harold Hill : A People's History http://www.haroldhill.org/section_two/section_two_page_one.htm (2004).

Baron d'Holbach photo
Robert Musil photo
Hannah Arendt photo
Évariste Galois photo

„[This] science is the work of the human mind, which is destined rather to study than to know, to seek the truth rather than to find it.“

—  Évariste Galois French mathematician, founder of group theory 1811 - 1832
Of mathematics — as quoted in Mathematics: The Loss of Certainty (1980) by Morris Kline, p. 99.

André-Marie Ampère photo

„There is synthesis when, in combining therein judgments that are made known to us from simpler relations, one deduces judgments from them relative to more complicated relations. There is analysis when from a complicated truth one deduces more simple truths.“

—  André-Marie Ampère French physicist and mathematician 1775 - 1836
André-Marie Ampère in: André-Marie Ampère: Enlightenment and Electrodynamics http://books.google.co.in/books?id=QWZKQWB-sbQC&pg=PA158, Cambridge University Press, 1996, p. 158.

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