In mathematical analysis we call x the undetermined part of line a: the rest we don't call y, as we do in common life, but a-x. Hence mathematical language has great advantages over the common language.

In mathematical analysis we call x the undetermined part of line a: the rest we don't call y, as we do in common life, but a-x. Hence mathematical language has great advantages over the common language.

The great trick of regarding small departures from the truth as the truth itself -- on which is founded the entire integral calculus -- is also the basis of our witty speculations, where the whole thing would often collapse if we considered the departures with philosophical rigour.

Aphorisms.

All mathematical laws which we find in Nature are always suspect to me, in spite of their beauty. They give me no pleasure. They are merely auxiliaries. At close range it is all not true.

In J P Stern,
*Lichtenberg,*
1959.

But leaving those of the Body, I shall proceed to such Recreation as adorn the Mind; of which those of the Mathematicks are inferior to none.

Pleasure with Profit, 1694.

The soul is the mirror of an indestructible universe.

The Monadology.

Although the whole of this life were said to be nothing but a dream and the physical world nothing but a phantasm, I should call this dream or phantasm real enough, if, using reason well, we were never deceived by it.

In J. R. Newman
(ed.), The World of
Mathematics, New
York: Simon and
Schuster, 1956.

The art of discovering the causes of phenomena, or true hypothesis, is like the art of decyphering, in which an ingenious conjecture greatly shortens the road.

New Essays
Concerning Human
Understanding, IV,
XII.

In symbols one observes an advantage in discovery which is greatest when they express the exact nature of a thing briefly and, as it were, picture it; then indeed the labor of thought is wonderfully diminished.

In G. Simmons,
Calculus Gems, New
York: McGraw Hill
Inc., 1992.

He who understands Archimedes and Apollonius will admire less the achievements of the foremost men of later times.

In G. Simmons,
Calculus Gems, New
York: McGraw Hill
Inc., 1992.

The imaginary number is a fine and wonderful recourse of the divine spirit, almost an amphibian between being and not being.

Unknown