"The gifts of nature are infinite in their variety, and mind differs from mind almost as much as body differs from body."

Quintilian (~35 - 100 CE). A rhetorician during the early Roman Empire, he was also, apparently, an armchair psychologist!


"History shows that where ethics and economics come in conflict, victory is always with economics. Vested interests have never been known to have willingly divested themselves unless there was sufficient force to compel them."

Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar (1891 – 1956), popularly known as Babasaheb, was an Indian jurist, economist, politician and social reformer. He campaigned against social discrimination towards Untouchables (Dalits), while also supporting the rights of women and labor.


"If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, each of us will have two ideas."

George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950) an Irish playwright, critic, and activist.


"Throughout history, it has been the inaction of those who could have acted; the indifference of those who should have known better; the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most; that has made it possible for evil to triumph."

Haile Selassie


"The dinosaurs became extinct because they didn't have a space program. And if we become extinct because we don't have a space program, it'll serve us right!"

Larry Niven, an American science-fiction writer, with a brilliant and unique analysis of the Cretaceous extinction


"Nothing contributes so much to tranquilize the mind as a steady purpose - a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye."

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley (née Godwin). She was an English novelist, short story writer, dramatist, essayist, biographer, and travel writer -- and you probably know her as the author of the 1818 novel Frankenstein: or, The Modern Prometheus.


"Ludwig Boltzmann, who spent much of his life studying statistical mechanics, died in 1906, by his own hand. Paul Ehrenfest, carrying on the work, died similarly in 1933. Now it is our turn to study statistical mechanics. Perhaps it will be wise to approach the subject cautiously."

David Goodstein, States of Matter, 1985


"Until recently, it was the habit of preachers to enumerate the points they made in their sermon. The phrase ‘fifthly and lastly, dear brethren’, or whatever number it was, was a familiar one to churchgoers. St Mary Magdalen Church in Bermondsey Street, London, once had a Puritan preacher who, some four hundred years ago, preached a sermon from sixty pages of notes concluding with the words ‘one hundred and seventhly and lastly, dear brethren.’"

N.T.P. Murphy, A Wodehouse Handbook, 2013


"She did it the hard way."

epitaph on Bette Davis' tombstone. She was an American actress on stage, television, and film who is perhaps best remembered for being willing to play unsympathetic, sardonic characters. She was also a hard worker with a perfectionist steak.


"Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees."

That is a quote from the "Father of Our National Parks," John Muir. He was born in Scotland, but was instrumental in safeguarding the American wilderness. His family emigrated to the United States in 1849 to establish a farm in Wisconsin. In 1867, Muir sustained a severe eye injury and as a result, decided to pursue his first love: walking the wilderness. He trekked 1,000 miles from Indianapolis to Florida, from which he sailed to New York, before sailing to San Francisco in 1868. He started walking from the other end of the United States, and "discovered" the Sierra Nevadas.

Those mountains his resting place, if John Muir could have one. He dedicated the rest of his life to walking and protecting the Sierra Nevadas. He founded the Sierra Club in San Francisco, and was a leading voice in convincing the federal government to establish Yosemite, Mount Rainier, and the Grand Canyon as national parks.

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    HISTORICAL NON-FICTION

    By Lillian Audette

    This blog is a collection of the interesting, the weird, and sometimes the need-to-know about history, culled from around the internet. It has pictures, it has quotes, it occasionally has my own opinions on things. If you want to know more about anything posted, follow the link at the "source" on the bottom of each post. And if you really like my work, buy me a coffee or become a patron!

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