Alfred North Whitehead Quotes

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The future belongs to those who can rise above the confines of the earth.
Alfred North Whitehead
The chief error in philosophy is overstatement.
Alfred North Whitehead (Process and Reality: An Essay in Cosmology, 1929)
A clash of doctrines is not a disaster--it is an opportunity.
Alfred North Whitehead
We think in generalities, but we live in detail.
Alfred North Whitehead (Quoted in The Atlantic Monthly, 1926)
It requires a very unusual mind to undertake the analysis of the obvious.
Alfred North Whitehead (Science and the Modern World, 1925)
The art of progress is to preserve order amid change.
Alfred North Whitehead (Process and Reality: An Essay in Cosmology, 1929)
Art flourishes where there is a sense of adventure.
Alfred North Whitehead
Error is the price we pay for progress.
Alfred North Whitehead (Process and Reality: An Essay in Cosmology, 1929)
Ninety percent of our lives is governed by emotion. 
Alfred North Whitehead (Dialogues of Alfred North Whitehead, 1954)
Education is the acquisition of the art of the utilisation of knowledge.
Alfred North Whitehead (The Aims of Education, 1929)
Not ignorance, but ignorance of ignorance is the death of knowledge.
Alfred North Whitehead
It takes an extraordinary intelligence to contemplate the obvious.
Alfred North Whitehead
A science which hesitates to forget its founders is lost. 
Alfred North Whitehead (Quoted in Nature Magazine, 1916)
Almost all new ideas have a certain aspect of foolishness when they are first produced.
Alfred North Whitehead
Life is an offensive, directed against the repetitious mechanism of the Universe.
Alfred North Whitehead (Adventures of Ideas, 1933)
Speak out in acts; the time for words has passed, and only deeds will suffice.
Alfred North Whitehead
The chief danger to philosophy is narrowness in the selection of evidence.
Alfred North Whitehead (Process and Reality: An Essay in Cosmology, 1929)
The deepest definition of youth is life as yet untouched by tragedy.
Alfred North Whitehead (Adventures of Ideas, 1933)


Fools act on imagination without knowledge, pedants act on knowledge without imagination.
Alfred North Whitehead
The guiding motto in the life of every natural philosopher should be, Seek simplicity and distrust it.
Alfred North Whitehead (The Concept of Nature, 1926)
No one who achieves success does so without acknowledging the help of others. The wise and confident acknowledge this help with gratitude.
Alfred North Whitehead
Everything of importance has been said before by somebody who did not discover it.
Alfred North Whitehead
Periods of tranquility are seldom prolific of creative achievement. Mankind has to be stirred up.
Alfred North Whitehead
It is the business of the future to be dangerous; and it is among the merits of science that it equips the future for its duties.
Alfred North Whitehead (Science and the Modern World, 1925)
Philosophy begins in wonder. And, at the end, when philosophic thought has done its best, the wonder remains.
Alfred North Whitehead
It is more important that a proposition be interesting than that it be true... But of course a true proposition is more apt to be interesting than a false one.
Alfred North Whitehead (Process and Reality: An Essay in Cosmology, 1929)
Wisdom alone is true ambition's aim, wisdom is the source of virtue and of fame; obtained with labour, for mankind employed, and then, when most you share it, best enjoyed.
Alfred North Whitehead
There are no whole truths; all truths are half-truths. It is trying to treat them as whole truths that plays the devil.
Alfred North Whitehead (Dialogues of Alfred North Whitehead, 1954)
Every philosophy is tinged with the colouring of some secret imaginative background, which never emerges explicitly into its train of reasoning.
Alfred North Whitehead (Science and the Modern World, 1925)
A philosopher of imposing stature doesn't think in a vacuum. Even his most abstract ideas are, to some extent, conditioned by what is or is not known in the time when he lives.
Alfred North Whitehead (Dialogues of Alfred North Whitehead, 1954)
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Alfred North Whitehead Biography

Born: February 15, 1861
Died: December 30, 1947

Alfred North Whitehead was an English mathematician and philosopher.
He is most commonly known as the co-author of
Principa Mathematica.

Notable Works

An Introduction to Mathematics (1911)
Science and the Modern World (1925)
The Aims of Education (1929)
Process and Reality (1929)
Adventures of Ideas (1933)
Dialogues (1954)

Featured Idea: Change

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