But nothing of a nature foreign to the duties of my profession

But nothing of a nature foreign to the duties of my profession [clergyman] engaged my attention while I was at Leeds so much as the, prosecution of my experiments relating to electricity, and especially the doctrine of air. The last I was led into a consequence of inhabiting a house adjoining to a public brewery, where first amused myself with making experiments on fixed air [carbon dioxide] which found ready made in the process of fermentation. When I removed from that house, I was under the necessity making the fixed air for myself; and one experiment leading to another, as I have distinctly and faithfully noted in my various publications on the subject, I by degrees contrived a convenient apparatus for the purpose, but of the cheapest kind. When I began these experiments I knew very little of chemistry, and had in a manner no idea on the subject before I attended a course of chymical lectures delivered in the Academy at Warrington by Dr. Turner of Liverpool. But I have often thought that upon the whole, this circumstance was no disadvantage to me; as in this situation I was led to devise an apparatus and processes of my own, adapted to my peculiar views. Whereas, if I had been previously accustomed to the usual chemical processes, I should not have so easily thought of any other; and without new modes of operation I should hardly have discovered anything materially new.

Joseph Priestley

Priestly (1733-1804) invented carbonated water, argued with Lavoisier concerning the true nature of oxygen, wrote a noted book about English grammar and another titled The History and Present State of Electricity, 700 pages in length, which remained the principal history of electricity for over a century, plus Essay on the First Principles of Government. In this latter publication, Priestly distinguished political rights from civil rights with precision and argued for expansive civil rights. Priestley identified separate private and public spheres, contending that the government should have control only over the public sphere. Education and religion, in particular, he maintained, were matters of private conscience and should not be administered by the state.

A drug is a substance

A drug is a substance which, if injected into a rabbit, produces a paper.

Otto Loewi

Colonel Ross still wore an expression

Colonel Ross still wore an expression which showed the poor opinion which he had formed of my companion’s ability, but I saw by the inspector’s face that his attention had been keenly aroused.

“You consider that to be important?” he [Inspector Gregory] asked.

“Exceedingly so.”

“Is there any point to which you would wish to draw my attention?”

“To the curious incident of the dog in the night-time.”

“The dog did nothing in the night-time.”

“That was the curious incident,” remarked Sherlock Holmes.

Inspector Gregory and Sherlock Holmes in “Silver Blaze”

Good heavens!

“Good heavens!” I cried. “Who would associate crime with these dear old homesteads?”

“They always fill me with a certain horror. It is my belief, Watson, founded upon my experience, that the lowest and vilest alleys in London do not present a more dreadful record of sin than does the smiling and beautiful countryside.”

“You horrify me!”

“But the reason is very obvious. The pressure of public opinion can do in the town what the law cannot accomplish. There is no lane so vile that the scream of a tortured child, or the thud of a drunkard’s blow, does not beget sympathy and indignation among the neighbours, and then the whole machinery of justice is ever so close that a word of complaint can set it going, and there is but a step between the crime and the dock. But look at these lonely houses, each in its own fields, filled for the most part with poor ignorant folk who know little of the law. Think of the deeds of hellish cruelty, the hidden wickedness which may go on, year in, year out, in such places, and none the wiser.”

Sherlock Holmes in “The Copper Beeches”

I belong to the most ancient empire on this globe

I belong to the most ancient empire on this globe. You, by your own statement, belong to the most dependent and ill-treated nation of serfs ever deprived of its liberties. The flag of my country floats over the third greatest navy in the world. Yours is to be seen derisively displayed on the 17th of March in the public streets and triumphantly hoisted on an occasional gin-mill. The ambassadors and consuls of my nation rank at every court in Europe with those of Russia, Germany, England and France. Those of your race may be found cooling their heels in the lobbies of any common council in which the rum-selling interest in politics predominates. The race which I represent is centuries old in every art and science. That of which you are the spokesman apologizes for its present ignorance and mental obscurity with the plea that your learning and literature are lost in the mythical past.

Wong Chin Foo, On Wong’s Chinese vs. Denis Kearney’s Irish (1883)

Computers

Computers are like Old Testament gods; lots of rules and no mercy.

Joseph Campbell

A children’s story

A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.

C.S. Lewis

You can find magic

You can find magic wherever you look. Sit back and relax all you need is a book!

Dr. Seuss

I am the wealthiest man

I am the wealthiest man, not just in Europe, but in the whole world. I collect emotions. I am wealthy in that the people of Russia have twice entrusted me with the leadership of a great nation such as Russia – I believe that is my greatest wealth.

Vladimir Putin

Stalin

Stalin is the most popular figure in all of Russia.

Vladimir Putin

Russia will not soon become

Russia will not soon become, if it ever becomes, a second copy of the United States or England – where liberal value have deep historic roots.

Vladimir Putin

It is sad, yet joyful

It is sad, yet joyful, on a silent summer’s night, in a voiceless wood, to hear a Russian song. Here we find unlimited sadness without hope. Here, also is unconquerable strength and the unalterable stamp of Fate; here, also is iron predestination, one of the primitive foundations of the Russian national identity, through which much can be explained which seemed inexplicable in Russian life.

Alexei K. Tolstoy

A difficult problem presents itself ceaselessly

A difficult problem presents itself ceaselessly to the Russian – the problem of organizing his vast territory. The immensity of Russia, the absence of boundaries, was expressed in the structure of the Russian soul. The landscape of the Russian soul corresponds with the landscape of Russia, the same boundlessness, formlessness, reaching out into infinity.

Nikolai Berdyaev

Florida

Florida isn’t so much a place where one goes to reinvent oneself, as it is a place where one goes if one no longer wished to be found.

Douglas Copeland

August in Florida is God’s way of reminding us who’s in charge.

Blaize Clement

The Florida in my novels is not as seedy as the real Florida. It’s hard to stay ahead of the curve. Every time I write a scene that I think is the sickest thing I have ever dreamed up, it is surpassed by something that happens in real life.

Carl Hiaasen

When people ask how close to the beach I am, I say, “12 minutes or 12 hours. Depends on which beach you want to go to.

Jarod Kintz

My parents didn’t want to move to Florida, but they turned sixty and that’s the law.

Jerry Seinfeld

Florida is so hot that when old people retire and move to Florida it’s because they want to start practicing for Hell.

Unknown

I like Florida… everything is in the 80’s… the temperatures, the ages and the IQ’s.

George Carlin

Labour once spent

Labour once spent has no influence on the future value of any article; it is gone and lost for ever. In commerce bygones are forever bygones; and we are always starting clear at each moment, judging the values of things with a view to future utility.

William Stanley Jevons

Kindle Singles is publishing on skates

Kindle Singles is publishing on skates. It prints like lightning; our book meets readers in hours. I’ve spent so many years waiting for publishers to consider whether they wanted to print a book of mine, making contracts, taking months to fit it into the Fall list or the Spring list, fitting it into an advertising plan.

Richard Bach

Successful negotiation

Successful negotiation is not about getting to ‘yes’; it’s about mastering ‘no’ and understanding what the path to an agreement is.

Christopher Voss

Pokeberries

Until I was a teenager, I used red pokeberries for lipstick and a burnt matchstick for eyeliner. I used honeysuckle for perfume.

Dolly Parton

A woman’s perfume

A woman’s perfume tells more about her than her handwriting.

Christian Dior

Ladies

Ladies, a man will never remember your handbag, but he will remember your perfume.

Olivier Creed

I wish to make known to the Russian people

I wish to make known to the Russian people, to Papa [Nicholas II] the Russian mother and to the children, to the land of Russia, what they must understand. If I am killed by common assassins, and especially by my brothers the Russian peasants, you, Tsar of Russia, have nothing to fear, remain on your throne and govern… But if I am murdered by nobles and if they shed my blood, their hands will remain soiled with my blood, for twenty-five years they will not wash their hands from my blood. They will leave Russia. Brothers will kill brothers… if it was your relations who have wrought my death then no one of your family, that is to say, none of your children or relations, will remain alive for more then two years.

Grigori Rasputin, in a 1916 letter to the tsarina

Autocracy

Autocracy is a superannuated form of government that may suit the needs of a Central African tribe, but not those of the Russian people, who are increasingly assimilating the culture of the rest of the world. That is why it is impossible to maintain this form of government except by violence.

Leo Tolstoy

How much good

How much good inside a day?

Depends how good you live ‘em.

How much love inside a friend?

Depends how much you give ‘em.

Shel Silverstein

To delight a child

To delight a child, to add a new joy to the crowded miracles of childhood, is no less worth doing than to leave a Sistine Chapel to astound a somewhat bored procession of tourists; or to have written a classic that sells by the thousands and is possessed unread by all save an infinitesimal percentage of its owners. It is, then, not an ignoble thing to do one’s very best to give our coming rulers – children – a taste of the Kingdom of Art.

Gleeson White

Anything can become a children’s book

Anything can become a children’s book if you give it to a child…Children are actually the best (and worst) audience for literature because they have no patience with pretence.

Orson Scott Card

You have brains in your head

You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself any direction you choose.

Dr. Seuss

A children’s story

A children’s story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children’s story in the slightest.

C.S. Lewis

The elaborate and rather flexible political police system established in Russia

The elaborate and rather flexible political police system established in Russia in the early 1880s was unique in at least two respects. Before the First World War no other country in the world had two kinds of police, one to protect the state and another to protect its citizens. Only a country with a deeply rooted patrimonial mentality could have devised such a dualism. Secondly, unlike other countries, where the police served as an arm of the law and was required to turn over all arrested persons to the judiciary, in imperial Russia and there alone police organs were exempt from this obligation.

Richard Pipes

The decline of a language must ultimately have political and economic causes

Now, it is clear that the decline of a language must ultimately have political and economic causes: it is not due simply to the bad influence of this or that individual writer. But an effect can become a cause, reinforcing the original cause and producing the same effect in an intensified form, and so on indefinitely. A man may take to drink because he feels himself to be a failure, and then fail all the more completely because he drinks. It is rather the same thing that is happening to the English language. It becomes ugly and inaccurate because our thoughts are foolish, but the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts.

George Orwell

Teach yourself by your own mistakes

Teach yourself by your own mistakes; people learn only by error. The good artist believes that nobody is good enough to give him advice. He has supreme vanity. No matter how much he admires the old writer, he wants to beat him.

William Faulkner

When I applied to law school

When I applied to law school, I wrote on my application that I wanted to do two things. One was to solve antitrust law’s irregularities and problems, and the second was to solve the Arab-Israeli conflict.

Daniel Lubetzky

The Antitrust Division

The Antitrust Division of the United States Department of Justice should take a long, hard look at the standard publishing contract.

Thomas Hauser

To write

To write is human, to edit is divine.

Stephen King

There are poisons

There are poisons that blind you, and poisons that open your eyes.

August Strindberg, The Ghost Sonata

Negative emotions

Negative emotions like loneliness, envy, and guilt have an important role to play in a happy life; they’re big, flashing signs that something needs to change.

Gretchen Rubin

They always say

They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.

Andy Warhol

A lot of women, when they’re young

A lot of women, when they’re young, feel they have very good friends, and find later on that friendship is complicated. It’s easy to be friends when everyone’s 18. It gets harder the older you get, as you make different life choices, as people say in America. A lot of women’s friendships begin to founder. I was interested in why that was, why it’s not possible for a woman to see her friend living differently and just think, Oh, she lives differently.

Zadie Smith

I do not believe

I do not believe in using women in combat, because females are too fierce.

Margaret Mead

You don’t have to be pretty

You don’t have to be pretty. You don’t owe prettiness to anyone. Not to your boyfriend/spouse/partner, not to your co-workers, especially not to random men on the street. You don’t owe it to your mother, you don’t owe it to your children, you don’t owe it to civilization in general. Prettiness is not a rent you pay for occupying a space marked ‘female.’

Erin McKean

From my second son Gustav

From my second son Gustav, I bought one of his complaints for 200 kroner. He was complaining that he was a middle child – he wasn’t the beloved first child, and he wasn’t the cute little youngest child. So I said, can I use that same wording in a film? And he said yeah. So I bought it from him.

Stellan Skarsgard