But in the present century, thanks in good part to the influence of Hilbert, we have come to see that the unproved postulates with which we start are purely arbitrary. They must be consistent, they had better lead to something interesting.

— Julian Coolidge

The most instructive Julian Coolidge quotes that will add value to your life

It is true that a man who does this is a fool.

I have only proved that a man who does anything else is an even bigger fool.

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The present author confesses that, to him, geometry is nothing at all, if not a branch of art ... A Treatise on Algebraic Plane Curves

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Every writer must reconcile, as best he may, the conflicting claims of consistency and variety, of rigour in detail and elegance in the whole. The present author humbly confesses that, to him, geometry is nothing at all, if not a branch of art.

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[Before the time of Benjamin Peirce it never occurred to anyone that mathematical research] was one of the things for which a mathematical department existed. Today it is a commonplace in all the leading universities. Peirce stood alone-a mountain peak whose absolute height might be hard to measure, but which towered above all the surrounding country.

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