- It is manifest that everything in the world, whether it be substance or accident, produces rays in its own manner like a star... Everything that has actual existence in the world of the elements emits rays in every direction, which fill the whole world.
- The light will not shame you, if it shows you your own ugliness, and that ugliness so offends you that you perceive the beauty of the light.
- Augustine, Ten Homilies on the First Epistle of John (414), First Homily, as translated by John Burnaby (1955), p. 262
- Corruption springs from light: 'tis one same power
Creates, preserves, destroys; matter whereon
It works, on e'er self-transmutative form,
Common to now the living, now the dead.
- Philip James Bailey, Festus (1813), scene Water and Wood.
- The light in the world comes principally from two sources,—the sun, and the student's lamp.
- Christian Nestell Bovee, Intuitions and Summaries of Thought (1862), Volume II, p. 16.
- For I light my candle from their torches.
- Robert Burton, The Anatomy of Melancholy (1621), Part III. Sect, II. Memb. 5. Subsec. 1.
- Phenomena were accounted for by taking into consideration the frictional resistances that would interfere with rapid vibrations of the electrons. When these frictional resistances were weak, oscillatory disturbances, such as rays of light, could be propogated through the diaelectric, which was then termed transparent (glass). When these frictional forces were considerable, the light ray was unable to set the electrons into vibration; its energy was consumed in the attempt, and as a result it could not proceed; the dielectric was then opaque (ebonite, sulphur).
- A. D'Abro, The Evolution of Scientific Thought from Newton to Einstein (1927) p. 130
- Regardless of the prophetic value of Dirac’s description [on interference] his was probably the first discussion... including a coherent beam of light. In other words, Dirac wrote the first chapter in laser optics.
- F. J. Duarte (2003). Tunable Laser Optics. Elsevier Academic. p. 3. ISBN 0-12-222696-8.
- A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the lustre of the firmament of bards and sages. Yet he dismisses without notice his thought, because it is his. In every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts: they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson, in "Self-Reliance: in Essays : First Series (1841).
- Light itself is a great corrective. A thousand wrongs and abuses that are grown in darkness disappear, like owls and bats, before the light of day.
- James A. Garfield, as quoted in General Garfield as a Statesman and Orator (1881) edited by the Republican Party National Committee, p. 59.
- And God said: "Let there be light," and there was light.
- Master, Master of Light,
Whose eye dwells in the seeking fingers of the blind,
You are still despised and mocked,
A man too weak and infirm to be God,
A God too much man to call forth adoration.
- Khalil Gibran, in Jesus, The Son of Man (1928), "A Man From Lebanon: Nineteen Centuries Afterward".
- There is strong shadow where there is much light.
- The eye owes its existence to the light. Out of indifferent animal organs the light produces an organ to correspond to itself; and so the eye is formed by the light, for the light so that the inner light may meet the outer... If the eye were not sunlike, how could we perceive the light?
- The obstacle was what Schiller and Koerner once called the "sensual element" in Goethe's philosophy, and which, years after the death of both Kant and Schiller, came out in Goethe in a most typical fashion when young Schopenhauer, a zealous and thorough-going Kantian, tried to explain that light would cease to exist along with the seeing eye. "What!" he said, according to Schopenhauer's own report, "looking at him with his Jove-like eyes,"—"You should rather say that you would not exist if the light could not see you?"
- There can be no doubt that light consists of the motion of a certain substance. For if we examine its production, we find that here on earth it is principally fire and flame which engender it, both of which contain beyond doubt bodies which are in rapid movement, since they dissolve and destroy many other bodies more solid than they: while if we regard its effects, we see that when light is accumulated, say by concave mirrors, it has the property of combustion just as fire has, that is to say, it disunites the parts of bodies, which is assuredly a proof of motion, at least in the true philosophy, in which the causes of all natural effects are conceived as mechanical causes. Which in my judgment must be accomplished or all hope of ever understanding physics is renounced.
- Nations will go to your light
- Do you know how God controls the clouds
- And how he causes the lightning to flash from his cloud?
- Do you know how the clouds float?
- These are the wonderful works of the One perfect in knowledge.
- And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.
- Every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest.
- Our faith is a light by nature coming of our endless Day, that is our Father, God. In which light our Mother, Christ, and our good Lord, the Holy Ghost, leadeth us in this passing life. This light is measured discreetly, needfully standing to us in the night. The light is cause of our life; the night is cause of our pain and of all our woe: in which we earn meed and thanks of God. For we, with mercy and grace, steadfastly know and believe our light, going therein wisely and mightily.
- Julian of Norwich, Revelations of Divine Love (c. 1393).
- We are actually born out of light, you might say. I believe light is the maker of all material. Material is spent light.
- Louis Kahn, Time Magazine (Jan. 15, 1973)
- Seeing into darkness is clarity.
Knowing how to yield is strength.
Use your own light
and return to the source of light.
This is called practicing eternity.
- The flame that burns Twice as bright burns half as long.
- Lao Tzu, Te Tao Ching
- I will love the light for it shows me the way. Yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars.
- In fact, when the eye perceives bright light one of four reactions may take place. These are, in order of increasing brightness: dazzle, after image formation, flash blindness, and irreversible damage. Most individuals will have experienced dazzle as a result of oncoming car headlights and persistent after images from accidentally staring at the filament of an incandescent bulb. Both dazzle and after images will distort vision for some seconds to minutes. Flash blindness occurs when an extremely bright flash is discharged, usually at night, and again vision is temporarily lost. All three reactions would be useful in temporarily disabling a pilot and causing him to abort close approach to a target. If even higher irradiances reach the retina then irreversible damage may occur. In practice, a laser system that will dazzle at one mile may permanently blind at closer range.
- John Marshall, "Blinding Laser Weapons: Still Available on the Battlefield", British Medical Journal. 315 (7120): (29 November 1997), p. 1392.
- Velocity of transverse undulations in our hypothetical medium, calculated from the electromagnetic experiments of 'MM'. Kohlrausch and Weber, agrees so exactly with the velocity of light calculated from the optical experiments of M. Fizeau, that we can scarcely avoid the conclusion that light consists in the transverse undulations of the same medium which is the cause of electric and magnetic phenomena.
- The general equations are next applied to the case of a magnetic disturbance propagated through a non-conductive field, and it is shown that the only disturbances which can be so propagated are those which are transverse to the direction of propagation, and that the velocity of propagation is the velocity v, found from experiments such as those of Weber, which expresses the number of electrostatic units of electricity which are contained in one electromagnetic unit. This velocity is so nearly that of light, that it seems we have strong reason to conclude that light itself (including radiant heat, and other radiations if any) is an electromagnetic disturbance in the form of waves propagated through the electromagnetic field according to electromagnetic laws.
- James Clerk Maxwell, A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field (1864), §20.
- That light is not itself a substance may be proved from the phenomenon of interference. A beam of light from a single source is divided by certain optical methods into two parts, and these, after travelling by different paths, are made to reunite and fall upon a screen. If either half of the beam is stopped, the other falls on the screen and illuminates it, but if both are allowed to pass, the screen in certain places becomes dark, and thus shows that the two portions of light have destroyed each other. Now, we cannot suppose that two bodies when put together can annihilate each other; therefore light cannot be a substance. ... What we have proved is that one portion of light can be the exact opposite of another portion... Such quantities are the measures, not of substances, but always of processes taking place in a substance. We therefore conclude that light is... a process going on in a substance... so that when the two portions [of light] are combined no process goes on at all. ...the light is extinguished when the difference of the length of the paths is an odd multiple of... a half wave-length. ...we see on the screen a set of fringes consisting of dark lines at equal intervals, with bright bands of graduated intensity between them. ...if the two rays are polarized ...when the two planes of polarization are parallel the phenomena of interference appear as above ...As the plane turns ...light bands become less distinct ...at right angles ...illumination of the screen becomes uniform, and no trace of interference can be discovered. ...The process may, however, be an electromagnetic one ...the electric displacement and the magnetic disturbance are perpendicular to each other, either ...supposed to be in the plane of polarization.
- I have also cleared the electromagnetic theory of light from all unwarrantable assumption, so that we may safely determine the velocity of light by measuring the attraction between bodies kept at a given difference of potential, the value of which is known in electromagnetic measure.
- James Clerk Maxwell, Letter to C. Hockin, Esq. (Sept 7, 1864) as quoted by Lewis Campbell, William Garnett, The Life of James Clerk Maxwell: With Selections from His Correspondence and Occasional Writings (1884)
- An age is called Dark not because the light fails to shine, but because people refuse to see it.
- He that has light within his own clear breast
May sit i' th' centre and enjoy bright day;
But he that hides a dark soul and foul thoughts
Benighted walks under the mid-day sun.
- Hail, holy light! offspring of heaven firstborn!
Or of th' eternal co-eternal beam,
May I express thee unblam'd? since God is light
And never but in unapproached light
Dwelt from eternity, dwelt then in thee,
Bright effluence of bright essence increate!
- And from her native east,
To journey through the aery gloom began,
Spher'd in a radiant cloud, for yet the sun
- There swift return
Diurnal, merely to officiate light
Round this opacous earth, this punctual spot.
- For... small things, there must be something else.
There is. We call it the electric interaction (more generally, the electromagnetic interaction), and it arises from an endowment of matter known as the electric charge. Standing still, an electrically charged particle throws up an electric potential to which other charged particles can respond.
Electric or magnetic, charge gives rise to both. Whether we say "electric potential" (because we perceive a charge to be at rest) or "magnetic potential" (because we perceive a charge to be in motion), the difference lies solely in our point of view. The source is one.
From the world of mass we descend... into the world of charge, ready to see our most familiar surroundings in a new light. Let there be electric charge.
- Michael Munowitz, Knowing: The Nature of Physical Law (2005)
- I am light; oh that I were night! But this is my loneliness, that I am girded by light.
Oh that I were dark and nocturnal! How I would suck at the breasts of light!
And even you I would bless, you little twinkling stars and glowworms up there! – And be blissful for your gift of light.
But I live in my own light, I drink back into myself the flames that break out of me.
- Light became their favorite subject on account of its mathematical obediance and freedom of movement. They were more interested in the play of its colors, and thus they named after it their great enterprise, the Enlightenment.
- Novalis, Christendom or Europe (1799) referring to the French Enlightenment.
- In faith there is enough light for those who want to believe and enough shadows to blind those who don't.
- Blaise Pascal, quoted in Thoughts from Earth (2004), p. 9.
- Before God, who preserves all things alive, and Christ Jesus, who as a witness made the fine public declaration before Pontius Pilate, I give you orders to observe the commandment in a spotless and irreprehensible way until the manifestation of our Lord Jesus Christ, which the happy and only Potentate will show in its own appointed times. He is the King of those who rule as kings and Lord of those who rule as lords, the one alone having immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal might. Amen.
- Among all the studies of natural causes and reasons, light most delights the contemplators; among the great things of mathematics, the certainty of its demonstrations most illustriously elevates the minds of its investigators; perspective must therefore be preferred to all human discourses and disciplines, in the study in which radiant lines are expounded by means of demonstrations and in which the glory is found not only of mathematics, but also physics: it is adorned with the flowers of one and the other.
- [W]ith regard to light, that it consists of vibrations was almost proved by the phenomena of diffraction, while those of polarisation showed the excursions of the particles to be perpendicular to the line of propogation; but the phenomena of dispersion, etc., require additional hypotheses which may be very complicated. Thus, the further progress of molecular speculation appears quite uncertain. If hypotheses are to be tried haphazard, or simply because they will suit certain phenomena, it will occupy the mathematical physicists of the world say half a century on the average to bring each theory to the test, and since the number of possible theories may go up into the trillion, only one of which can be true, we have little prospect of making further solid additions to the subject in our time.
- Charles Sanders Pierce, "The Architecture of Theories" in The Monist (January 1891) Vol. I, No. 2, p. 161ff.
- Once there was only dark. If you ask me, the light's winning.
- Nic Pizzolatto, writer for "Rust" Cohle, Matthew McConaughey, True Detective (TV series), Form and Void
- God is the light of the heavens and the earth. The similitude of His light is as a niche wherein is a lamp. The lamp is in a glass.The glass is as it were a shining star. (This lamp is) kindled from a blessed tree, an olive neither of the East nor of the West, whose oil would almost glow forth (of itself) though no fire touched it. Light upon light, God guideth unto His light whome he will. And God speaketh to mankind in allegories, for God is knower of all things.
- Quran 24:35.
- In the right light, at the right time, everything is extraordinary.
- Aaron Rose, quoted in The Reader's Digest Vol. 152 (1998), p. 185, also in Live in the Light : A Journal of Self-Enlightenment (2003) by Mary Engelbreit.
- Light seeking light doth light of light beguile:
So, ere you find where light in darkness lies,
Your light grows dark by losing of your eyes
- There are two kinds of light — the glow that illumines, and the glare that obscures.
- James Thurber, Lanterns and Lances (1963).
- Love is not consolation, it is light.
- For many centuries before modern science, and for the first two and a half centuries of modern science, the division of reality into matter and light seemed self-evident. ...As long as the separation between the massive and the massless persisted, a unified description of the physical world could not be achieved.
- Frank Wilczek, The Lightness of Being – Mass, Ether and the Unification of Forces (2008)
- Light was once the sight of God. As the gaze of Ra spanned space... In the night sky, planets and stars once played host to gods and angels, who in turn passed their gift of light to man...
- Arthur Zajonc, Catching the Light: The Entwined History of Light and Mind (1993)
- With the passing of the Cathars and of Grosseteste, the religious tradition of angelic light faded. Over time, science pruned away the trappings of spirit to fashion a material and mathematical imagination of light. In doing so, it similarly reshaped its image of man and cosmos.
- Arthur Zajonc, Catching the Light: The Entwined History of Light and Mind (1993)
Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations
- Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 455-57.
- Now that the sun is gleaming bright,
Implore we, bending low,
That He, the Uncreated Light,
May guide us as we go.
- Attributed to Adam de Saint Victor. Old Latin Hymn said to have been sung at the death-bed of William the Conqueror.
- Misled by Fancy's meteor-ray,
By passion driven;
But yet the light that led astray,
Was light from Heaven.
- Robert Burns, The Vision.
- Hinc lucem et pocula sacra.
- Hence light and the sacred vessels.
- Motto of Cambridge University.
- Light is the first of painters. There is no object so foul that intense light will not make it beautiful.
- Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature, Chapter III.
- I shall light a candle of understanding in thine heart, which shall not be put out.
- II Esdras, XIV. 25.
- And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
- Genesis. I. 3.
- Against the darkness outer
God's light his likeness takes,
And he from the mighty doubter
The great believer makes.
- R. W. Gilder, The New Day, Part IV. Song XV.
- Mehr Licht!
- More light!
- Said to be the last words of Goethe
- Wo viel Licht is, ist starker Schatten.
- Where there is much light, the shadows are deepest.
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Götz von Berlichingen, I, 24.
- Blasted with excess of light.
- Thomas Gray, Progress of Poesy.
- Like our dawn, merely a sob of light.
- Victor Hugo, La Legende des Siécles.
- The true light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.
- John. I. 9.
- He was a burning and a shining light
- John. V. 35.
- Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you.
- John, XII. 35.
- The Light that Failed.
- Rudyard Kipling, Title of Story.
- The prayer of Ajax was for light;
Through all that dark and desperate fight,
The blackness of that noonday night.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, The Goblet of Life, Stanza 8.
- Fra l' ombre un lampo solo
Basta al nocchier fugace
Che già ritrova il polo,
Già riconosce il mar.
- In the dark a glimmering light is often sufficient for the pilot to find the polar star and to fix his course.
- Metastasio, Achille, 1, 6.
- Where glowing embers through the room
Teach light to counterfeit a gloom.
- John Milton, Il Penseroso (1631), line 79.
- But let my due feet never fail
To walk the studious cloisters pale,
And love the high embowed roof,
With antique pillars massy proof,
And storied windows richly dight;
Casting a dim religious light.
- Where art thou, beam of light? Hunters from the mossy rock, saw ye the blue-eyed fair?
- Ossian, Temora, Book VI.
- Ex luce lucellum.
- Out of light a little profit.
- William Pitt's description of the Window Tax. Also suggested by Robert Lowe, Chancellor, as a motto for matchboxes, when the British Government introduced a match tax, 1871.
- Those having lamp will pass them on to others.
- Plato, Republic, 328.
- Nature and Nature's laws lay hid in night:
God said, "Let Newton be!" and all was light.
- Alexander Pope, Epitaph Intended for Sir Isaac Newton.
- Nur der Gewissenswurm schwärmt mit der Eule. Sünder und böse Geister scheun das Licht.
- Only the worm of conscience consorts with the owl. Sinners and evil spirits shun the light.
- Friedrich Schiller, Liebe und Cabale, V. I.
- But it is not necessary to light a candle to the sun.
- Algernon Sidney, Discourses on Government, Chapter II, Section XXIII.
- 'Twas a light that made
Darkness itself appear
A thing of comfort.
- Robert Southey, The Curse of Kehama, Padalon, Stanza 2.
- An unreflected light did never yet
Dazzle the vision feminine.
- Sir Henry Taylor, Philip Van Artevelde, Part I, Act I, scene 5, line 88.
- Thy prayer was "Light—more Light"—while Time shall last
Thou sawest a glory growing on the night,
But not the shadows which that light would cast,
Till shadows vanish in the Light of Light.
- Alfred Tennyson, Inscription on the Window in memory of Caxton, in St. Margaret's Church, Westminster, London.
- A remnant of uneasy light.
- William Wordsworth, The Matron of Jedborough, and Her Husband.
- The light that never was on sea or land,
The consecration, and the poet's dream.
- William Wordsworth, Elegiac Stanzas. Suggested by a picture of Peele Castle in a storm.
- But ne'er to a seductive lay let faith be given;
Nor deem that "light that leads astray" is light from Heaven.
- William Wordsworth, To the Sons of Burns.