Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon quotes

  • Genius is only a greater aptitude for patience.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Inspirational #Genius #Aptitude

  • Hold on; hold fast; hold out. Patience is genius.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Genius #Hold Fast

  • The great workman of nature is time.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Nature #Great Work #Workmen

  • One can descend by imperceptible degree from the most perfect creature to the most shapeless matter, from the best-organised animal to the roughest mineral.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Nature #Animal #Perfect

  • It appears that all that can be, is. The Creator's hand does not appear to have been opened in order to give existence to a certain determinate number of species, but it seems that it has thrown out all at once a world of relative and non-relative creatures, an infinity of harmonic and contrary combinations and a perpetuity of destructions and replacements. What idea of power is not given us by this spectacle! What feeling of respect for its Author is not inspired in us by this view of the universe!
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Nature #Views #Hands

  • An Individual, whatever species it might be, is nothing in the Universe. A hundred, a thousand individuals are still nothing. The species are the only creatures of Nature, perpetual creatures, as old and as permanent as it. In order to judge it better, we no longer consider the species as a collection or as a series of similar individuals, but as a whole independent of number, independent of time, a whole always living, always the same, a whole which has been counted as one in the works of creation, and which, as a consequence, makes only a unity in Nature.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Nature #Independent #Order

  • Only those works which are well-written will pass to posterity: the amount of knowledge, the uniqueness of the facts, even the novelty of the discoveries are no guarantees of immortality ... These things are exterior to a man but style is the man himself.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Knowledge #Men #Discovery

  • For the little that one has reflected on the origin of our knowledge, it is easy to perceive that we can acquire it only by means of comparison. That which is absolutely incomparable is wholly incomprehensible. God is the only example that we could give here. He cannot be comprehended, because he cannot be compared. But all which is susceptible of comparison, everything that we can perceive by different aspects, all that we can consider relatively, can always be judged according to our knowledge.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Mean #Giving #Littles

  • Nature is the system of laws established by the Creator for the existence of things and for the succession of creatures. Nature is not a thing, because this thing would be everything. Nature is not a creature, because this creature would be God. But one can consider it as an immense vital power, which encompasses all, which animates all, and which, subordinated to the power of the first Being, has begun to act only by his order, and still acts only by his concourse or consent ... Time, space and matter are its means, the universe its object, motion and life its goal.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Mean #Order #Law

  • The style is the man himself.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Men #Style #He Man

  • All the work of the crystallographers serves only to demonstrate that there is only variety everywhere where they suppose uniformity ... that in nature there is nothing absolute, nothing perfectly regular.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Variety

  • Style is the essence of man
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Men #Essence #Style

  • There is nothing good in love but the physical part.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Love

  • He [man] abuses equally other animals and his own species, the rest of whom live in famine, languish in misery, and work only to satisfy the immoderate appetite and the still more insatiable vanity of this human being who, destroying others by want, destroys himself by excess.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Men #Animal #Vanity

  • To be and to think are one and the same for us.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Science #Thinking

  • Writing well is at one and the same time good thinking, good feeling, and good expression; it is having wit, soul, and taste, all together.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Writing #Thinking #Expression

  • As historians, we refuse to allow ourselves these vain speculations which turn on possibilities that, in order to be reduced to actuality, suppose an overturning of the Universe, in which our globe, like a speck of abandoned matter, escapes our vision and is no longer an object worthy of our regard. In order to fix our vision, it is necessary to take it such as it is, to observe well all parts of it, and by indications infer from the present to the past.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Past #Order #Vision

  • The cat is the only animal which accepts the comforts but rejects the bondage of domesticity.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Cat #Animal #Comfort

  • Rassemblons des faits pour nous donner des idées. Let us gather facts in order to get ourselves thinking.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Thinking #Order #Facts

  • In general, the more one augments the number of divisions of the productions of nature, the more one approaches the truth, since in nature only individuals exist, while genera, orders, and classes only exist in our imagination.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Truth #Order #Class

  • There are several kinds of truths, and it is customary to place in the first order mathematical truths, which are, however, only truths of definition. These definitions rest upon simple, but abstract, suppositions, and all truths in this category are only constructed, but abstract, consequences of these definitions ... Physical truths, to the contrary, are in no way arbitrary, and do not depend on us.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Truth #Simple #Order

  • We can only penetrate the rind of the earth.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Earth #Geology

  • I am convinced, by repeated observation, that marbles, lime-stones, chalks, marls, clays, sand, and almost all terrestrial substances, wherever situated, are full of shells and other spoils of the ocean.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Ocean #Clay #Substance

  • Although the works of the Creator may be in themselves all equally perfect, the animal is, as I see it, the most complete work of nature, and man is her masterpiece.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #God #Animal #Men

  • Let us suppose, that the Old and New worlds were formerly but one continent, and that, by a violent earthquake, the ancient Atalantis [sic] of Plato was sunk ... The sea would necessarily rush in from all quarters, and form what is now called the Atlantic ocean.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Plato #Ocean #Sea

  • The human mind cannot create anything. It produces nothing until having been fertilized by experience and meditation; its acquisitions are the germs of its production.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Meditation #Mind #Experience

  • The sublime can only be found in the great subjects. Poetry, history and philosophy all have the same object, and a very great object-Man and Nature. Philosophy describes and depicts Nature. Poetry paints and embellishes it. It also paints men, it aggrandizes them, it exaggerates them, it creates heroes and gods. History only depicts man, and paints him such as he is.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Nature #Philosophy #Hero

  • The greatest marvel is not in the individual. It is in the succession, in the renewal and in the duration of the species that Nature would seem quite inconceivable. This power of producing its likeness that resides in animals and plants, this form of unity, always subsisting and appearing eternal, this procreative virtue which is perpetually expressed without ever being destroyed, is for us a mystery which, it seems, we will never be able to fathom.
    -- Georges-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon

    #Nature #Animal #Unity