- Quapropter bono christiano, sive mathematici, sive quilibet impie divinantium... cavendi sunt, ne consortio daemoniorum irretiant.
- Translation: Therefore, a good Christian should beware that mathematicians, and any others who prophesy impiously... may be entangled in the companionship of demons.
- St. Augustine, De Genesi ad Litteram
- Augustine uses "mathematicians" in this context to refer mainly to astrologers and occultists using numerology.
- A mathematician is a machine for turning coffee into theorems.
- Popularly attributed to Paul Erdős, who was quoting Alfréd Rényi (Bruce Schechter, My Brain Is Open: The Mathematical Journeys of Paul Erdős, 1998, New York: Simon & Schuster, ISBN 0684846357)
- Die Mathematiker sind eine Art Franzosen; redet man zu ihnen, so übersetzen sie es in ihre Sprache, und dann ist es alsobald ganz etwas anders.
- Translation: Mathematicians are [like] a sort of Frenchmen; if you talk to them, they translate it into their own language, and then it is immediately something quite different.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Maximen und Reflexionen, 2006 (Helmut Koopmann, ed.) ISBN 3423343788
- The mathematician's best work is art, a high perfect art, as daring as the most secret dreams of imagination, clear and limpid. Mathematical genius and artistic genius touch one another.
- Gösta Mittag-Leffler
- Quoted in N. Rose Mathematical Maxims and Minims, Raleigh NC:Rome Press Inc., 1988.
- Mathematicians seem to have no difficulty in creating new concepts faster than the old ones become well understood.
- Edward Norton Lorenz (1991) "A scientist by choice". Speech by acceptance of the Kyoto Prize in 1991
- I have hardly ever known a mathematician who was capable of reasoning.
- Plato, from Benjamin Jowett's interpretive vernacular translation (1871) of Plato's Republic, Book VII, 531-e. Plato actually has Socrates say that few mathematicians are dialecticians (διαλεκτικοί) (Jowett, Plato's Republic: The Greek Text, Vol. I "Text", 1894), by which he refers to step by step reasoning based on mutual agreement, (G. M. A. Grube, Plato's Republic (1974), Book VII, note 13). It is an accurate observation on the primitive mathematics of his day.
- A mathematician is a blind man in a dark room looking for a black cat which isn't there.
- A topologist is one who doesn't know the difference between a doughnut and a coffee cup.
- You know we all became mathematicians for the same reason: we were lazy.
- The mathematician has reached the highest rung on the ladder of human thought.
- There are two kinds of mistakes. There are fatal mistakes that destroy a theory; but there are also contingent ones, which are useful in testing the stability of a theory.
- Give us something to take home!
- Some of you may have had occasion to run into mathematicians and to wonder therefore: How they got that way
- It is impossible to be a mathematician without being a poet in soul.
- Think Explore Solve Lookback.
- lottery: Taxation for the mathematically inept.
Last modified on 29 September 2013, at 04:43