50 Mathematics Quotes by Mathematicians, Philosophers, and Enthusiasts

Mathematicians, philosophers, and enthusiasts alike have their own views about mathematics. Below are the 50 mathematics quotes collected from the time of Euclid up to 21st century.

Let’s see what the masters of the field have to say about mathematics. Don’t forget to type on the comment box which of the quotes is/are your favorite/s.

1. Mathematics is a game played according to certain rules with meaningless marks on paper. — David Hilbert

2. Mathematics is concerned only with the enumeration and comparison of relations. — Carl Friedrich Gauss

3. Mathematics is the door and key to the sciences. — Roger Bacon

4. Mathematics is the science of what is clear by itself. — Carl Jacobi

5. Mathematics – the unshaken Foundation of Sciences, and the plentiful Fountain of Advantage to human affairs.  – Isaac Barrow

6. Mathematics is as much an aspect of culture as it is a collection of algorithms. —  Carl Boyer

7. Mathematics is the art of giving the same name to different things.– Henri Poincaré

8. Mathematics is one of the essential emanations of the human spirit — a think to be valued in and for itself like art or poetry.

9. Mathematics is not a careful march down a well-cleared highway, but a journey into a strange wilderness, where the explorers often get lost. Rigour should be a signal to the historian that the maps have been made, and the real explorers have gone elsewhere. -- W. S. A

10. Mathematics, as much as music or any other art, is one of the means by which we rise to a complete self-consciousness. The significance of mathematics resides precisely in the fact that it is an art; by informing us of the nature of our own minds it informs us of much that depends on our minds.– John William Navin Sullivan

11. Mathematics is the supreme judge; from its decisions there is no appeal.–Tobias Dantzig

12. Mathematics is no more computation than typing is literature.– John Allen Paulos

13. Mathematics is the language with which God wrote the universe. — Galileo

14. Mathematics is the handwriting on the human consciousness of the very spirit of life itself. — Claude Bragdon

15. Mathematics is the queen of science. — Carl Friedrich Gauss

16. Mathematics may be defined as the subject in which we never know what we are talking about, nor whether what we are saying is true. — Bertrand Russell

17. Mathematics consists in proving the most obvious thing in the least obvious way. — George Polya

18. Mathematics is like love; a simple idea, but it can get complicated.

19. Mathematics is like checkers in being suitable for the young, not too difficult, amusing, and without peril to the state. — Plato

20. Mathematics is not a deductive science – that’s a cliché. When you try to prove a theorem, you don’t just list the hypotheses, and then start to reason. What you do is trial and error, experimentation, guesswork. — Paul Halmos

21. Mathematics is written for mathematicians.  – Copernicus

22. Mathematics is a great motivator for all humans.. Because its career starts with zero and it never end (infinity).

23. Mathematics is not a book confined within a cover and bound between brazen clasps, whose contents it needs only patience to ransack; it is not a mine, whose treasures may take long to reduce into possession, but which fill only a limited number of veins and lodes; it is not a soil, whose fertility can be exhausted by the yield of successive harvests; it is not a continent or an ocean, whose area can be mapped out and its contour defined: it is limitless as that space which it finds too narrow for its aspirations; its possibilities are as infinite as the worlds which are forever crowding in and multiplying upon the astronomer’s gaze. — J. Sylvester

24. Mathematics is, I believe, the chief source of the belief in eternal and exact truth, as well as a sensible intelligible world. — Bertrand Russell

25. Mathematics is the tool specially suited for dealing with abstract concepts of any kind and there is no limit to its power in this field. — P. Dirac.

26. Mathematics is not only real, but it is the only reality. — Martin Gardner
27. Mathematics is often erroneously referred to as the science of common sense. — Newman & Kasner

28. Mathematics is the cheapest science. Unlike physics or chemistry, it does not require any expensive equipment. All one needs for mathematics is a pencil and paper.

29. Mathematics Is an Edifice, Not a Toolbox

30. Mathematics is an independent world created out of pure intelligence.  – William Woods Worth

31. Mathematics is, as it were, a sensuous logic, and relates to philosophy as do the arts, music, and plastic art to poetry. —  K. Shegel

32. Mathematics is a more powerful instrument of knowledge than any other that has been bequeathed to us by human agency.  – Descartes

33. Mathematics is the science which uses easy words for hard ideas. – Edward Kasner and James R. Newman

34. Mathematics is a body of knowledge, but it contains no truths.  – Morris Kline

35. Mathematics is the science which draws necessary conclusions. – Benjamin Pierce

36. Mathematics is an art of human understanding. — William Thurston

37, Mathematics, in the common lay view, is a static discipline based on formulas…But outside the public view, mathematics continues to grow at a rapid rate…the guide to this growth is not calculation and formulas, but an open ended search for pattern. -- Lynn A. Steen

38. Mathematics, even in its present and most abstract state, is not detached from life. It is just the ideal handling of the problems of life.– Cassius Jackson Keyser 

39. Mathematics is the science of definiteness, the necessary vocabulary of those who know. — W. J. White

40. Mathematics serves as a handmaiden for the explanation of the quantitative situations in other subjects, such as economics. – H. F. Fehr

41. Mathematics compares the most diverse phenomena and discovers the secret analogies that unite them. — Joseph Fourier 

42. Mathematics is on the artistic side a creation of new rhythms, orders, designs, harmonies, and on the knowledge side, is a systematic study of various rhythms, orders.– William L. Schaaf 

43. Mathematics is pure language – the language of science. It is unique among languages in its ability to provide precise expression for every thought or concept that can be formulated in its terms. — A Adler.

44. But mathematics is the sister, as well as the servant, of the arts and is touched by the same madness and genius. – Marston Morse

45. Mathematics is concerned with “all possible worlds. — D.M. Armstrong

46.  . . mathematics is not just another language . . . it is a language plus logic. Mathematics is a tool for reasoning. — Richard Feynman

47. Mathematics is not a contemplative but a creative subject; no one can draw much consolation from it when he has lost the power or the desire to create; and that is apt to happen to a mathematician rather soon. It is a pity, but in that case he does not matter a great deal anyhow, and it would be silly to bother about him. — G.H. Hardy

48. Mathematics, however, is, as it were, its own explanation; this, although it may seem hard to accept, is nevertheless true, for the recognition that a fact is so is the cause upon which we base the proof. — Girolamo Cardano

49. Mathematics makes a nice distinction between the usually synonymous terms “elementary” and “simple”, with “elementary” taken to mean that not very much mathematical knowledge is needed to read the work and “simple” to mean that not very much mathematical ability is needed to understand it. – Julian Havel

50. Mathematics is a hard thing to love. It has the unfortunate habit, like a rude dog, of turning its most unfavourable side towards you when you first make contact with it. — David Whiteland

Sources: Brainy Quote, Oklahom State U Website, Peter Cameron’s Blog, David Pleacher’s Website, Quote Garden, Maths People (Image Credit)

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