December 17

day of the year

Quotes of the day from previous years:

Men are born ignorant, not stupid. They are made stupid by education. ~ Bertrand Russell
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring,
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.

~ "Arwen" in the film The Return of the King ~
I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach. ~ Charles Dickens in A Christmas Carol (first published 19 December 1843, but mistakenly suggested for this date)
To even mention all the things the bird must constantly keep in mind in order to fly securely through the air would take a considerable part of the evening... The bird has learned this art of equilibrium, and learned it so thoroughly that its skill is not apparent to our sight. We only learn to appreciate it when we try to imitate it. ~ Wilbur Wright (designed the Wright Flyer which flew on 17 December 1903)
  • proposed by Fys
It is a queer and fantastic world. Why can't people have what they want? The things were all there to content everybody; yet everybody has got the wrong thing. Perhaps you can make head or tail of it; it is beyond me. ~ Ford Madox Ford
Alas for maiden, alas for Judge,
For rich repiner and household drudge!
God pity them both! and pity us all,
Who vainly the dreams of youth recall;
For of all sad words of tongue or pen,
The saddest are these: "It might have been!"

~ John Greenleaf Whittier ~
All he desired in life was that — that he could pick himself together again and go on with his daily occupations if — the girl, being five thousand miles away, would continue to love him. He wanted nothing more, He prayed his God for nothing more. ~ Ford Madox Ford
Those who have served the cause of the revolution have plowed the sea. ~ Simon Bolivar (died 17 December 1830)
  • proposed by Fys
Scrooge was better than his word. … He became as good a friend, as good a master, and as good a man, as the good old city knew, or any other good old city, town, or borough, in the good old world. Some people laughed to see the alteration in him, but he let them laugh, and little heeded them; for he was wise enough to know that nothing ever happened on this globe, for good, at which some people did not have their fill of laughter in the outset; and knowing that such as these would be blind anyway, he thought it quite as well that they should wrinkle up their eyes in grins, as have the malady in less attractive forms. His own heart laughed: and that was quite enough for him.
He had no further intercourse with Spirits, but lived upon the Total Abstinence Principle, ever afterwards; and it was always said of him, that he knew how to keep Christmas well, if any man alive possessed the knowledge. May that be truly said of us, and all of us! And so, as Tiny Tim observed, God Bless Us, Every One! ~ Charles Dickens in A Christmas Carol (first published on 19 December 1843, but mistakenly suggested for this date)
You may well ask why I write. And yet my reasons are quite many. For it is not unusual in human beings who have witnessed the sack of a city or the falling to pieces of a people to set down what they have witnessed for the benefit of unknown heirs or of generations infinitely remote; or, if you please, just to get the sight out of their heads.
~ Ford Madox Ford ~
Every discovery opens a new field for investigation of facts, shows us the imperfection of our theories. It has justly been said, that the greater the circle of light, the greater the boundary of darkness by which it is surrounded.
~ Humphry Davy ~
We need to get to know each other, listen to each other and improve our knowledge of the world around us. Sometimes after a meeting I want to arrange another one because new ideas are born and I discover new needs. This is important: to get to know people, listen, expand the circle of ideas. The world is crisscrossed by roads that come closer together and move apart, but the important thing is that they lead towards the Good.
~ Pope Francis ~
The fullness of grace can transform the human heart and enable it to do something so great as to change the course of human history. … This Extraordinary Holy Year is itself a gift of grace. To pass through the Holy Door means to rediscover the infinite mercy of the Father who welcomes everyone and goes out personally to encounter each of them. This will be a year in which we grow ever more convinced of God’s mercy. How much wrong we do to God and his grace when we speak of sins being punished by his judgment before we speak of their being forgiven by his mercy! But that is the truth. We have to put mercy before judgment, and in any event God’s judgement will always be in the light of his mercy. In passing through the Holy Door, then, may we feel that we ourselves are part of this mystery of love. Let us set aside all fear and dread, for these do not befit men and women who are loved. Instead, let us experience the joy of encountering that grace which transforms all things.
~ Pope Francis ~
God's ways seem dark, but, soon or late,
They touch the shining hills of day;
The evil cannot brook delay,
The good can well afford to wait.
~ John Greenleaf Whittier ~
Fortunately science, like that nature to which it belongs, is neither limited by time nor by space. It belongs to the world, and is of no country and of no age. The more we know, the more we feel our ignorance; the more we feel how much remains unknown; and in philosophy, the sentiment of the Macedonian hero can never apply, — there are always new worlds to conquer.
~ Humphry Davy ~
God is the light that illuminates the darkness, even if it does not dissolve it, and a spark of divine light is within each of us … our species will end but the light of God will not end and at that point it will invade all souls and it will all be in everyone.
~ Pope Francis ~
We must not place the burden on the next generations to take on the problems caused by the previous ones. Instead, we should give them the opportunity to remember our generation as the one that renewed and acted on — with honest, responsible and courageous awareness — the fundamental need to collaborate in order to preserve and cultivate our common home. May we offer the next generation concrete reasons to hope and work for a good and dignified future!
~ Pope Francis ~
The Son of God became incarnate to infuse into the human soul the feeling of brotherhood. All are brothers and all children of God. Abba, as he called the Father. I will show you the way, he said. Follow me and you will find the Father and you will all be his children and he will take delight in you. Agape, the love of each one of us for the other, from the closest to the furthest, is in fact the only way that Jesus has given us to find the way of salvation and of the Beatitudes.
~ Pope Francis ~
Nothing is so fatal to the progress of the human mind as to suppose that our views of science are ultimate; that there are no mysteries in nature; that our triumphs are complete, and that there are no new worlds to conquer.
~ Humphry Davy ~
It is beautiful to celebrate Christmas, but let us lower the level of Christmas spending. Let's have a more humble Christmas, with more humble gifts, and send what we save to the Ukrainian people, who need it. … They are suffering so much, they are going hungry, they feel the cold and many are dying because there are not enough doctors and nurses available … Let's not forget. Christmas, yes. In peace with the Lord, yes. But with Ukrainians in our hearts. Let's make this concrete gesture for them.
~ Pope Francis ~
Do you know how many children have died in Gaza in this last war? More than 3,000. It is incredible, but it is the reality … And in Ukraine there are more than 500, and in Yemen, in years of war, thousands … Their memory leads us to be ourselves lights for the world, to touch the hearts of many people, especially those who can stop the whirlwind of violence.
~ Pope Francis ~
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Art! Who comprehends her? With whom can one consult concerning this great goddess? ~ Ludwig van Beethoven (baptized December 17, 1770; his date of birth is unknown)

  • 2. Fys. “Ta fys aym”. 00:17, 15 December 2006 (UTC)
  • 2 InvisibleSun 07:27, 15 December 2006 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 20:10, 16 December 2007 (UTC) with a lean toward 3.
  • 2 Zarbon 19:39, 26 April 2008 (UTC)

Heavier-than-air flying machines are impossible. ~ Attributed to William Thomson, Lord Kelvin (died December 17, 1907, four years to the day after this prediction turned out to be untrue)

  • 3. Fys. “Ta fys aym”. 00:17, 15 December 2006 (UTC)
  • 2 InvisibleSun 07:27, 15 December 2006 (UTC)
  • 1 Zarbon 19:39, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
  • 0 It doesn't appear that William Thomas had anything to do with the pursuit of flight... Lyle 20:07, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

When once you have tasted flight, you will forever walk the earth with your eyes turned skyward, for there you have been, and there you will always long to return. ~ Leonardo da Vinci, in honour of the Wright brothers' first flight on December 17, 1903.

  • 2. Fys. “Ta fys aym”. 00:17, 15 December 2006 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 07:27, 15 December 2006 (UTC)
  • 3 Kalki 20:10, 16 December 2007 (UTC) with a strong lean toward 4. this is now recognized as a misattribution; as noted on the Leonardo da Vinci page: "This quotation, which cannot be found in any of da Vinci's writings, was first used in print (and misattributed to Leonardo da Vinci) in a science fiction story published in 1975, The Storms of Windhaven. One of the authors, Lisa Tuttle, remembers that the quote was suggested by science fiction writer Ben Bova, who says he believes he got the quote from a TV documentary narrated by Fredric March, presumably I, Leonardo da Vinci, written by John H. Secondari for the series Saga of Western Man, which aired on 23 February 1965. Bova incorrectly assumed that he was quoting da Vinci. The probable author is John Hermes Secondari (1919-1975), American author and television producer."
    I would probably be willing to use it here, but only with a clear designation of the actual source, which remains somewhat undetermined at present. ~ ♌︎Kalki ⚓︎ 23:42, 16 December 2020 (UTC)
  • 3 but preferable on date of birth. Zarbon 19:39, 26 April 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 Lyle 20:07, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

We can do without any article of luxury we have never had; but when once obtained, it is not in human natur’ to surrender it voluntarily. ~ Thomas Chandler Haliburton

  • 2 Zarbon 06:40, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
  • 2 Kalki 00:58, 11 December 2008 (UTC) with a lean toward 3.
  • 2 Cheers to the internet! Lyle 20:07, 16 December 2008 (UTC)
  • 3 InvisibleSun 22:44, 16 December 2008 (UTC)

In the United States today, we have more than our share of the nattering nabobs of negativism. ~ William Safire in a speech written for Spiro Agnew (Safire born on 17 December 1929)

  • 3 Kalki 18:57, 13 October 2009 (UTC) with a lean toward 4.

Every man is a potential genius until he does something. ~ Herbert Beerbohm Tree

People are too apt to treat God as if he were a minor royalty. ~ Herbert Beerbohm Tree

Never say a humorous thing to a man who does not possess humour: he will always use it in evidence against you. ~ Herbert Beerbohm Tree

I believe in God, not in a Catholic God, there is no Catholic God, there is God and I believe in Jesus Christ, his incarnation. Jesus is my teacher and my pastor, but God, the Father, Abba, is the light and the Creator. This is my Being.
~ Pope Francis ~