Nature A-B

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I hold no preference among flowers, so long as they are wild, free, spontaneous.
Edward Abbey (1927-1989)- Desert Solitaire “Cliffrose and Bayonets”, p. 25 (1968)

The domination of nature leads to the domination of human nature.
Edward Abbey (1927-1989) – Beyond The Wall: Essays from the Outside, 1971

There are no vacant lots in nature.
Edward Abbey (1927-1989)- Desert Solitude, “The First Morning,” p.6, Ballantine Books, NY, NY, 1968

Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell.
Edward Abbey (1927-1989) – The Journey Home (1991) The Rape of the West p. 183

Nature is indifferent to our love, but never unfaithful.
Edward Abbey (1927-1989) – A Voice Crying in the Wilderness, Notes from a Secret Journal, 1986, Ch,9 p86

Nature neither gives nor expects mercy.
Diane Ackerman (1948 -) – The Moon by Whale Light: And Other Adventures Among Bats, Penguins, Crocodilians, and Whales, Random House, NY,NY, 1991, 239-240.

Nature is also great fun. To pretend that nature isn’t fun is to miss much of the joy of being alive.
Diane Ackerman (1948 -) – The rarest of the rare: Vanishing Animals, Timeless Worlds, Introduction, Vintage Books, NY, NY, p.xx, 1997

Nature is what wins in the end.
Abby Adams (1902-1984) – The Gardener’s Gripe Book, Workmans Publishing, NY, NY, 1995, p. 10.

No matter how sophisticated you may be, a large granite mountain cannot be denied — it speaks in silence to the very core of your being.
Ansel Adams (1902-1984) – Exhibition at the Corcoran Gallery, Washington, D.C.

The only things in my life that compatibly exist with this grand universe are the creative works of the human spirit.
Ansel Adams (1902-1984) – Ansel Adams: An Autobiography

Chaos was the law of nature; Order was the dream of man.
Henry Brooks Adams (1838-1918) – The Education of Henry B. Adams, p. 1132, The Library of America (1983)

If there’s a power above us,
(And that there is all nature cries aloud
Through all her works,) he must delight in virtue.
Joseph Addison (1672-1719) – Cato, Act V, Scene I, J Dicks, London, 1883

Nature delights in the most plain and simple diet.
Joseph Addison (1672-1719) – The Spectator, Vol I, 1826, No 162, p. 255

As long as men inquire, they will find opportunities to know more upon these topics than those who have gone before them, so inexhaustibly rich is nature in the innermost diversity of her treasures of beauty, order and intelligence.
Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz (1807-1873) – The Spectator, Vol VII, No. 477, September 6, 1712, pp 19-20.

The eye of the trilobite tells us that the sun shone on the old beach where he lived; for there is nothing in nature without a purpose, and when so complicated an organ was made to receive the light, there must have been light to enter it.
Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz (1807-1873) – Geological Sketches, ch. 2, 1866

Lay aside all conceit. Learn to read the book of nature for yourself. Those who have succeeded best have followed for years some slim thread which has once in a while broadened out and disclosed some treasure worth a life-long search.
Jean Louis Rodolphe Agassiz (1807-1873) – Popular Science Monthly, Quoted by David Stair Jordan, Vol 40, 1891

Nature is the armory of genius. Cities serve it poorly, books and colleges at second hand; the eye craves the spectacle of the horizon; of mountain, ocean, river and plain, the clouds and stars; actual contact with the elements, sympathy with the seasons as they rise and roll.
Amos Bronson Alcott (1799-1888) – The Journals of Bronson Alcott, January, p. 187, Little Brown & Co., Boston MA, 1938.

Nature is thought immersed in matter. . .
Amos Bronson Alcott (1799-1888) – “Pantheon,” The Journal of Speculative Philosophy, Vol II, No 1, 1868 (p. 47)

Wild roses are fairest, and nature a better gardener than art.
Louisa May Alcott (1832-1888) – A Long Fatal Love Chase, 1866, Dell Publishing reprint, 1995, p 11.

Nature hath nothing made so base, but can read some instruction to the wisest man.
Charles Aleyn -Quoted in: A dictionary of thoughts: being a cyclopedia of laconic quotations from the best authors of the world, both ancient and modern, edited by Tryon Edwards, 1908. Quote improperly attributed to Tryon Edwards.

Every landscape is, as it were, a state of the soul, and whoever penetrates into both is astonished to find how much likeness there is in each detail.
Henri Frédéric Amiel (1821-1881) –The Private Journal of Henri Frédéric Amiel, Tr. H. Ward, October 31, 1852,

Nature has been for me, for as long as I remember, a source of solace, inspiration, adventure, and delight; a home, a teacher, a companion.
Lorraine Anderson (1952 – ) – Quoted in The 12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women, Gail McMeekin, Conari Press, 2000, p27.

Nature has no mercy at all. Nature says, “I’m going to snow. If you have on a bikini and no snowshoes, that’s tough. I am going to snow anyway.
Maya Angelou (1928 – ) – Conversations with Maya Angelou, Ed. J. Elliot, University Press of Mississippi, (1989)

In all things of nature there is something of the marvelous.
Aristotle (384 BC-322 BC) – Parts of Animals I.645a16

Nature makes nothing incomplete, and nothing in vain.
Aristotle (384 BC-322 BC) – Politics I. 1256 b

But Nature flies from the infinite, for the infinite is unending or imperfect, and Nature ever seeks an end.
Aristotle (384 BC-322 BC) – Generation of Animals I.715b15

If one way be better than another, that you may be sure is Nature’s way.
Aristotle (384 BC-322 BC) – Nicomanachean Ethics, 1099B, 23

There is more both of beauty and of raison d’etre in the works of nature- than in those of art.
Aristotle (384 BC-322 BC) – De Partibus Animalium, I., 1, 5.

Those whose days are consumed in the low pursuits of avarice, or the gaudy frivolties of fashion, unobservant of nature’s loveliness of demarcation, nor on which side thereof an intermediate form should lie.
Aristotle (384 BC-322 BC) –The History of Animals, Book VIII, Part 1, tr. D’Arcy Wentworth Thompson

Mountains inspire awe in any human person who has a soul. They remind us of our frailty, our unimportance, of the briefness of our span on this earth. They touch the heavens, and sail serenely at an altitude beyond even the imaginings of a mere mortal.
Elizabeth Aston in The Exploits & Adventures of Miss Alethea Darcy: A novel, A.E. Books, 2005, p 103.

. . .nature indifferently copied is far superior to the best idealities.
John James AudubonThe Life and Adventures of John James Audubon, the Naturalist, Robert Buchanan, p. 140, (1868).

Nature is the art of God – LA NATURA E L’ARTE DI DIO
Attributed to Dante Alighieri . However in De Monarchia, II Chapter 2, Dante says: Whatever good is in lesser things . . . must come first from the artist, God, And secondly from the instrument of divine art, heaven which men generally call Nature.” (. . . organum . . .  artis divinae, quam Naturam communiter appelant.)(See also Sir Thomas Browne, below)

Men go forth to marvel at the height of mountains, and the huge waves of the sea, the broad flow of the rivers, the vastness of the ocean, the orbits of the stars, and yet they neglect to marvel at themselves. Variant: Men go abroad to admire the heights of mountains, the mighty billows of the sea, the broad tides of rivers, the compass of the ocean, and the circuits of the stars, and pass themselves by.
Augustine of Hippo (354–430) – Confessions (c. 397), Book 10, Chapter VIII.

A portent happens not contrary to nature, but contrary to what we know as nature.
Augustine of Hippo (354–430) – City of God, Book XXI, Chapter 8, Tr. Rev. M. Dods,

Death, like generation, is a secret of Nature.
Marcus Aurelius (121-180) – Meditations (c. 161–180 CE) IV, 5.

No form of nature is inferior to art; for the arts merely imitate natural forms. – Variant: There is no nature which is inferior to art, the arts imitate the nature of things.
Marcus Aurelius (121–180) – Meditations. xi. 10.

One cannot fix one’s eyes on the commonest natural production without finding food for a rambling fancy.
Jane Austen (1775-1817) – Mansfield Park,  Chapter XXII, 1814

Nature is often hidden; sometimes overcome; seldom extinguished.
Sir Francis Bacon – Essays, “Of Nature, In Men,” (speaking of the nature of man) 1627

Art is man added to Nature.
Sir Francis Bacon – Descriptio Globi Intellectus (1612).

Nature to be commanded must be obeyed.
Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626) – Novum Organum (The New Organon) (1620) – bk. 1, aph. 129

The breath of flowers is far sweeter in the air than in the hand.
Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626) – Bacon’s Essays, “Of Gardens,” 1627

In nature, things move violently to their place, and then calmly in their place.
Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626) – Bacon’s Essays, “Of Great Places,” p. 27, 1627

Art is man added to Nature.
Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626) -Descriptio Globi Intellectus, 1612

God Almighty first planted a garden. And indeed it is the purest of human pleasures. It is the greatest refreshment to the spirits of man; without which, buildings and palaces are but gross handiworks.
Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626) – Essays, “Of Gardens,” 1627

Man, being servant and interpreter of Nature, can do and understand so much and so much only as he as observed in fact or thought of the course of nature; beyond this he neither knows anything nor can do anything.
Sir Francis Bacon (1561-1626) – The New Organon (1620) in James Spedding, Robert Ellis and Douglas Heath (eds.), The works of Francis Bacon (1877-1901), Vol 4, p. 47.

Art is man’s nature; nature is God’s art.
Phillip James Bailey – Festus, Pr the Jubilee revision, (1839)

What is Art, monsieur, but Nature concentrated?
Qu’est-ce que l’Art, monsieur? C’est la Nature concentrée.
Honoré de Balzac (1799-1850) – Illusions perdues, vol I, 1839, trans. Ellen Marriage, ch. I, section 5.

God gave us memory so that we might have roses in December.
J.M. Barrie – Courage, pg 1, 1922

I was obliged, at last, to come to the conclusion that the contemplation of nature alone is not sufficient to fill the human heart and mind.
Henry Walter Bates (1825-1892) – The Naturalist on the River Amazons, Vol 2, ch 3, London, 1863, p. 186

For you teach very clearly by your behavior how slowly and how meagerly our senses proceed in the investigation of ever inexhaustible nature.
Biambatista Beccaria (1716-1781) – Elettricismo artificiale (1772), vii-viii, in Antonio Pace, Franklin and Italy, 1958, p. 58.

It is the end of art to inoculate men with the love of nature. But those who have a passion for nature in the natural way, need no pictures nor galleries. Spring is their designer, and the whole year their artist.
Henry Ward Beecher (1813-1887) – Star Papers, or Experiences of Art and Nature, “A Discourse of Flowers,” Beecher, Applewood Books, Bedford MA, 1855, p.94.

Believe me, you will find more lessons in the woods than in books. Trees and stones will teach you what you cannot learn from masters.
Experto crede: aliquid amplius invenies in silvis, quam in libris. Ligna et lapides docebunt te, quod a magistris audire non possis.
Bernard of Clairvaux – St. Bernard – Epistola CVI, sect. 2; translation from Edward Churton The Early English Church ([1840] 1841) p. 324.

People who want to see the beauty of nature from motorboats and automobiles would obviously be just as pleased, and as fully recreated, at a drive-in movie.
Wendell Berry (1934 – ) The Unforseen Wilderness: An Essay on Kentucky’s Red River George, University Press of Kentucky, 1971

Nature is always lavish of her gifts even to the most insignificant forms. The butterflies and moths are richly dowered in this respect.
Anne Besant (1847-1933) – “The Clothes’ Moth,” Our Corner, Vol 4, No. 1, July 1884, p40

Touch the earth, love the earth, her plains, her valleys, her hills, and her seas; rest your spirit in her solitary places. For the gifts of life are the earth’s and they are given to all, and they are the songs of birds at daybreak, Orion and the Bear, and the dawn seen over the ocean from the beach.
Henry Beston (1888-1968) – The Outermost House (1928)

Nature is part of our humanity, and without some awareness and experience of that divine mystery, man ceases to be man.
Henry Beston (1888-1968) – The Outermost House, Forward (p. ix), Rinehart & Co. NY, NY, 1928

If there is one thing clear about the centuries dominated by the factory and the wheel, it is that although the machine can make everything from a spoon to a landing-craft, a natural join in earthly living is something it never has and never will be able to manufacture. It has given us conveniences (often most uncomfortable) and comforts (often most inconvenient) but human happiness was never on its tray of wares.
Henry Beston (1888-1968) – Northern Farm: A chronicle of Maine, Down East Books, 1988

Nature always tends to act in the simplest way.
Johann Bernoulli (1700-1782) – Essay on the Brachistochrone, Acta Eruditorum, May 1697

Nature is just enough; but men and women must comprehend and accept her suggestions.
Antoinette Brown Blackwell (1825-1921) – “Sex and Evolution,” in The Neglected Canon: Nine Women Philosophers: First to the Twentieth Century, ed Dykeman, Kluwer Academic Publishers, 1999, p. 350

The tree which moves some to tears of joy is in the eyes of others only a green thing that stands in the way. Some see nature all ridicule and deformity . . . and some scarce see nature at all. But to the eyes of the man of imagination, nature is imagination itself.
William Blake (1757-1827) – The Letters of William Blake, ed Geoffrey Keynes (1956,) Letter to Rev. Dr. Trusler, August 23, 1799

In Nature nothing remains constant. Everything is in a perpetual state of transformation, motion and change.
David Bohm (1917-1992) – Causality and Chance in Modern Physics, Chapter 1, p1, University of Penn. Press, 1957

Nature always springs to the surface and manages to show what she is. It is vain to stop or try to drive her back. She breaks through every obstacle, pushes forward, and at last makes for herself a way.
Nicolas Boileau-Despréaux  (1636-1711) Quoted in Treasury of Thought Forming an Encyclopædia of Quotations from Ancient and Modern Authors ,By Maturin Murray Ballou · 1894, p. 359.

Man is wise and constantly in quest of more wisdom; but the ultimate wisdom, which deals with beginnings, remains locked in a seed. There it lies, the simplest fact of the universe and at the same time the one which calls forth faith rather than reason.
Hal Borland (1900-1978) – “The Certainty – April 5,” Sundial of the Seasons (1964)

There are no idealists in the plant world and no compassion. The rose and the morning glory know no mercy. Bindweed, the morning glory, will quickly choke its competitors to death, and the fence row rose will just as quietly crowd out any other plant that tried to share its roothold. Idealism and mercy are human terms and human concepts.
Hal Borland (1900-1978) – Book of Days, 22 July, 1976, 1976

There are some things, but not too many, toward which the countryman knows he must be properly respectful if he would avoid pain, sickness and injury. Nature is neither punitive nor solicitous, but she has thorns and fangs as wells as bowers and grassy banks.
Hal Borland (1900-1978) – Beyond your Doorstep: A handbook to the Country, Ch. 13, p. 303, 1962

Nature seems to look after her own only up to a certain point; beyond that they are supposed to fend for themselves.
Hal Borland (1900-1978) – The Enduring Pattern, “Life, Flesh and Blood: Amphibians,” (p.185), Simon & Schuster, NY, NY, 1959

Nothing in nature is as simple as it sometimes seems when reduced to words.
Hal Borland (1900-1978) – The Enduring Pattern, “Life, Flesh and Blood: Reptiles,” (p.189), Simon & Schuster, NY, NY, 1959

Nature always looks out for the preservation of the universe.
Robert Boyle (1627-1691 ) – A free Enquiry into the Vulgarly Received Notion of Nature, Section IV, Cambridge University Press, 1996, p 31

Man masters nature not by force, but by understanding.
Jacob Bronowski (1908-1974) – “The Creative Mind,” Science and Human Values (1956), Lecture given at MIT, Feb 26, 1953

Now nature is not at variance with art, nor art with nature, they being both servants of his providence: art is the perfection of nature; were the world now as it was the sixth day, there were yet a chaos; nature hath made one world, and art another. In brief, all things are artificial; for nature is the art of God.
Sir Thomas Browne (1605-1682) – Religio Medici, Part 1, (sec. 16) 1642 – See also Dante Alighieri, above

Thus there are two books from whence I collect my Divinity; besides that written one of God, another of his servant Nature, that universal and public Manuscript, that lies expans’d unto the eyes of all; those that never saw him in the one, have discovered him in the other.
Sir Thomas Browne (1605-1682) – Religio Medici, Part 1, Section 16., 1642

Nature is none other than God in all things.
Giordano Bruno (1548-1600) – Quoted in Elements of Pantheism (2004), Paul A. Harrison

Nature does not tolerate the whimsical and the inane; all her structures are on principles, and she allows no others.
J. Ingram Bryan (1868-1953) – The Interpretation of Nature in English Poetry, Ch 1 (p. 6) Tokyo, Japan, 1932

The great workman of nature is time.
George-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (1707-1788) – ‘Les Animaux Sauvages’, Historie Naturelle, 1756, Quoted in Jacques Rooger, The Life Sciences in Eighteenth-Century French Thought, ed K. Benson, tr R. Ellrich, 1997, p468.

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.
George-Louis Leclerc, Comte de Buffon (1707-1788) – ‘De La Nature: Premiere Vue’, Historie naturelle, generale et particuliere avec la descritpion du cabinet du roi (1764), Vol 12, iii-1v. Tr Phillip R. Sloan

All scientists have found that preconceived notions, dogmas, and all personal prejudice and bias, must be set aside, listening patiently, quietly and reverently to the lessons, one by one, which Mother Nature has to teach, shedding light on that which was before a mystery, so that all who will may see and know. She conveys her truths only to those who are passive and receptive.
Luther Burbank (1849-1926) – “How to Produce New Trees, Fruits and Flowers,” Proceedings of the American Pomological Society, Session of 1895, Volumes 24-26, Twenty-Fourth Session, p. 59.

The serenity produced by the contemplation and philosophy of nature is the only remedy for prejudice, superstition, and inordinate self-importance, teaching us that we are all a part of Nature herself, strengthening the bond of sympathy which should exist between ourselves and our brother man. . .
Luther Burbank (1849-1926) – “How to Produce New Trees, Fruits and Flowers,” Proceedings of the American Pomological Society, Session of 1895, Volumes 24-26, Twenty-Fourth Session, p. 61.

Nature’s law affirm instead of prohibit. If you violate her laws, you are your own prosecuting attorney, judge, jury, and hangman.
Luther Burbank (1849-1926) – The Harvest of the Years, Luther Burbank, Wilbur Hall, Houghton Mifflin company, 1931, p. 267.

Nature is never more truly herself, than in her grandest form.
Edmund Burke (1729-1797) – The works of the Right Hon. Edmund Burke: With a Biographical and Critical Introduction, “Letters on a Regicide Peace,” Holdsworth & Ball, London, 1834, p. 324.

Never did nature say one thing and wisdom say another.
Edmund Burke (1729-1797) – The works of the Right Hon. Edmund Burke: With a Biographical and Critical Introduction, “Letters on a Regicide Peace,” Holdsworth & Ball, London, 1834, p. 324.

Look abroad through Nature’s range,
Nature’s mighty law is change.
Robert Burns (1759-1796) – Let not woman e’er complain, 1794.

. . . in the order of nature we may behold the ways of the Eternal.
John Burroughs (1837-1921) – The Light of Day, Houghton, Mifflin, 1900, p. 50.

Nature teaches more than she preaches. There are no sermons in stones. It is easier to get a spark out of a stone than a moral.
John Burroughs (1837-1921) – Time and Change, XII The Gospel of Nature, p. 247.

One of the hardest lessons we have to learn in this life, and one that many persons never learn, is to see the divine, the celestial, the pure, in the common, the near at hand – to see that heaven lies about us here in this world.
John Burroughs (1837-1921) – “The Divine Soil,” The Atlantic Monthly, April, 1908, p 440.

Nature exists for man no more than she does for monkeys, and is as regardless of his life or pleasure or success as she is of the fleas. Her waves will drown him, her fire burn him, and her earth devour him, her storms and lightning smite him, as if he were only a dog.
John Burroughs (1837-1921) – The Heart of Burrough’s Journals, Jan 17, 1866, p. 46, Houghten Mifflin Co., Boston, 1928

Nature will not be conquered, but gives herself freely to her true lover — to him who revels with her, bathes in her seas, sails her rivers, camps in her woods, and with no mercenary ends, accepts all.
John Burroughs (1837-1921) – The Heart of Burrough’s Journals, Jan 17, 1866, p. 46, Houghten Mifflin Co., Boston, 1928

Nature is not benevolent; Nature is just, gives pound for pound, measure for measure, makes no exceptions, never tempers her decrees with mercy, or winks at any infringement of her laws.
John Burroughs (1837-1921) – Harvest of a Quiet Eye: The Natural World of John Burroughs, The Gospel of Nature, 5 (p. 149, 1976

To the scientist Nature is a storehouse of facts, laws, processes; to the artist she is a storehouse of pictures; to the poet she is a storehouse of images, fancies, a source of inspiration; to the moralist she is a storehouse of precepts and parables; to all she may be a source of knowledge and joy.
John Burroughs (1837-1921) – “The Art of Seeing Things,” Leaf and Tendril (1908)

The art of nature is all in the direction of concealment.
John Burroughs (1837-1921) – “The Art of Seeing Things,” Leaf and Tendril (1908)

The life of nature we must meet halfway; it is shy, withdrawn, and blends itself with a vast neutral background. We must be initiated; it is an order the secrets of which are well guarded.
John Burroughs (1837-1921)- “The Art of Seeing Things,” Leaf and Tendril (1908)

There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep sea, and music in it’s roar:
I love not Man the less, but Nature more.
Lord Byron (1788-1824) – “Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage,” Canto IV, CLXXVIII, The complete works of Lord Byron, Galignani And Co., Paris, 1841, p. 146.

 

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