Point set topology is a disease from which the human race will soon recover.

— Henri Poincare

The most skyrocket Henri Poincare quotes that will add value to your life

It is through science that we prove, but through intuition that we discover.

49

The scientist does not study nature because it is useful;

he studies it because he delights in it, and he delights in it because it is beautiful.

49

There are no solved problems; there are only problems that are more or less solved.

48

It is the harmony of the diverse parts, their symmetry, their happy balance;

in a word it is all that introduces order, all that gives unity, that permits us to see clearly and to comprehend at once both the ensemble and the details.

32

Mathematicians do not study objects, but relations among objects;

they are indifferent to the replacement of objects by others as long the relations don't change. Matter is not important, only form interests them.

28

Geometry is the art of correct reasoning from incorrectly drawn figures.

23

One geometry cannot be more true than another; it can only be more convenient.

23

Every good mathematician should also be a good chess player and vice versa.

22

It is far better to foresee even without certainty than not to foresee at all.

22

Mathematical discoveries, small or great are never born of spontaneous generation.

19

To doubt everything, or, to believe everything, are two equally convenient solutions; both dispense with the necessity of reflection.

14

Mathematics is the art of giving the same name to different things.

[As opposed to the quotation: Poetry is the art of giving different names to the same thing].

13

About Henri Poincare

Quotes 115 sayings
Nationality French
Profession Mathematician
Birthday April 29, 1854

Mathematicians do not study objects, but relations between objects.

13

Experiment is the sole source of truth.

It alone can teach us something new; it alone can give us certainty.

13

Thought must never submit, neither to a dogma, nor to a party, nor to a passion, nor to an interest, nor to a preconceived idea, nor to whatever it may be, save to the facts themselves, because, for thought, submission would mean ceasing to be.

13

In the old days when people invented a new function they had something useful in mind.

12

Mathematicians are born, not made.

12

Pure logic could never lead us to anything but tautologies;

it can create nothing new; not from it alone can any science issue.

12

Most striking at first is the appearance of sudden illumination, a manifest sign of long unconscious prior work.

9

A reality completely independent of the spirit that conceives it, sees it, or feels it, is an impossibility. A world so external as that, even if it existed, would be forever inaccessible to us.

9

All great progress takes place when two sciences come together, and when their resemblance proclaims itself, despite the apparent disparity of their substance.

8

...the feeling of mathematical beauty, of the harmony of numbers and of forms, of geometric elegance. It is a genuinely aesthetic feeling, which all mathematicians know

8

Geometry is not true, it is advantageous.

8

One would have to have completely forgotten the history of science so as to not remember that the desire to know nature has had the most constant and the happiest influence on the development of mathematics.

7

Mathematics is the art of giving the same name to different things.

7

Often when works at a hard question, nothing good is accomplished at the first attack. Then one takes a rest, long or short, and sits down anew to the work. During the first half-hour, as before, nothing is found, and then all of a sudden the decisive idea presents itself to the mind.

6

If one looks at the different problems of the integral calculus which arise naturally when one wishes to go deep into the different parts of physics, it is impossible not to be struck by the analogies existing.

6

Just as houses are made of stones, so is science made of facts.

6

One does not ask whether a scientific theory is true, but only whether it is convenient.

6

A sane mind should not be guilty of a logical fallacy, yet there are very fine minds incapable of following mathematical demonstrations.

6

It may be appropriate to quote a statement of Poincare, who said (partly in jest no doubt) that there must be something mysterious about the normal law since mathematicians think it is a law of nature whereas physicists are convinced that it is a mathematical theorem.

5

A cat is witty, he has nerve, he knows how to do precisely the right thing at the right moment.

5

A small error in the former will produce an enormous error in the latter.

5

What is it indeed that gives us the feeling of elegance in a solution, in a demonstration?

4

Einstein does not remain attached to the classical principles, and when presented with a problem in physics he quickly envisages all of its possibilities. This leads immediately in his mind to the prediction of new phenomena which may one day be verified by experiment.

4

Need we add that mathematicians themselves are not infallible?

4

Astronomy is useful because it raises us above ourselves;

it is useful because it is grand; .... It shows us how small is man's body, how great his mind, since his intelligence can embrace the whole of this dazzling immensity, where his body is only an obscure point, and enjoy its silent harmony.

4

Ideas rose in clouds; I felt them collide until pairs interlocked, so to speak, making a stable combination.

4

Mathematicians do not deal in objects, but in relations between objects;

thus, they are free to replace some objects by others so long as the relations remain unchanged. Content to them is irrelevant: they are interested in form only.

3

Mathematical discoveries, small or great are never born of spontaneous generation They always presuppose a soil seeded with preliminary knowledge and well prepared by labour, both conscious and subconscious.

3

It is the simple hypotheses of which one must be most wary;

because these are the ones that have the most chances of passing unnoticed.

3

If we ought not to fear mortal truth, still less should we dread scientific truth. In the first place it can not conflict with ethics? But if science is feared, it is above all because it can give no happiness? Man, then, can not be happy through science but today he can much less be happy without it.

3

The mathematical facts worthy of being studied are those which, by their analogy with other facts, are capable of leading us to the knowledge of a physical law. They reveal the kinship between other facts, long known, but wrongly believed to be strangers to one another.

3

Thought is only a flash between two long nights, but this flash is everything.

3

The subliminal self is in no way inferior to the conscious self.

It knows how to choose and to divine.

3

Experiment is the sole source of truth.

3

Sociology is the science with the greatest number of methods and the least results.

3

[T]he different branches of Arithmetic - Ambition [G]eometry is not true, it is advantageous.

3

If nature were not beautiful, it would not be worth knowing, and if nature were not worth knowing, life would not be worth living.

2
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