Inspiring quotes by Joseph Priestley

The top 10 most inspiring quotes by Joseph Priestley

  • The wisdom of one generation will be folly in the next.
  • To me there is in happiness an element of self-forgetfulness. You lose yourself in something outside yourself when you are happy; just as when you are desperately miserable you are intensely conscious of yourself, are a solid little lump of ego weighing a ton.
  • It is no use speaking in soft, gentle tones if everyone else is shouting.
  • In completing one discovery we never fail to get an imperfect knowledge of others of which we could have no idea before, so that we cannot solve one doubt without creating several new ones.
  • The more elaborate our means of our common sense is, the less the common sense it becomes.
  • In completing one discovery we never fail to get an imperfect knowledge of others.
  • The greater part of critics are parasites, who, if nothing had been written, would find nothing to write.
  • Every man, when he comes to be sensible of his natural rights, and to feel his own importance, will consider himself as fully equal to any other person whatever.
  • When we say there is a GOD, we mean that there is an intelligent designing cause of what we see in the world around us, and a being who was himself uncaused.
  • We should like to have some towering geniuses, to reveal us to ourselves in color and fire.

Joseph Priestley (1733–1804) was a polymathic figure of the 18th century, known primarily as a chemist, theologian, educator, and political theorist. Born in England, Priestley’s early life was marked by a keen intellect and curiosity. Ordained as a dissenting clergyman, he served various congregations throughout England.

Priestley is most renowned for his groundbreaking work in chemistry, particularly his discovery of several gases, including oxygen, which he famously called “dephlogisticated air.” This discovery, made in 1774, laid the foundation for modern understanding of the composition of air and the processes of combustion and respiration.

In addition to his scientific pursuits, Priestley was deeply engaged in political and religious controversies of his time. He championed liberal and reformist ideas, advocating for religious tolerance, democratic principles, and the rights of dissenters.

His prolific writings encompassed topics ranging from theology and philosophy to education and politics. Among his notable works are “The History and Present State of Electricity,” “Experiments and Observations on Different Kinds of Air,” and “An Essay on the First Principles of Government.”

Joseph Priestley’s legacy is one of intellectual courage and innovation, as well as a commitment to advancing knowledge and promoting social progress. He remains a significant figure in the history of science, philosophy, and social reform.

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