Ultimate Source of Motivation For Physics Students

Famous quotations by scientists that will inspire you to study physics.

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Whether you are high school student interested in physics, or college freshman ready to tackle the challenging subject, a word of motivation is always desirable. The following is a list of encouraging quotes from prominent scientists which will make you respect and value physics even more than before.


Lise Meitner

She said, "I love physics with all my heart. It is a kind of personal love, as one has for a person to whom one is grateful for many things. The study of physics makes me try to fight selflessly to reach truth and objectivity. It also teaches to accept reality with awe and admiration, not to mention the amazement and joy that come along with it."

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Meitner was Austrian-Swedish physicist who studied nuclear physics and radioactivity. She led a team of researchers that discovered "nuclear fission", a term she coined, but she was ignored in 1945 when her colleague Otto Hahn was awarded the Nobel Prize and she wasn't.



Albert Einstein

Einstein said, "The most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible. And this is the miracle of the human mind, to use its constructions, concepts, and formulas as tools to explain what one sees, feels and touches. So try to comprehend a little more every day and simply do not stop questioning. Worry not about what you cannot answer, because curiosity has its own reason for existence."

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Albert Einstein was a German scientist who was awarded the 1921 Nobel Prize in physics for his explanation of the photoelectric effect. As a theoretical physicist, he had many discoveries, but perhaps best known for his theories of special and general relativity and the energy-mass relation E=mc² which foreshadowed the development of the atomic bomb.

Einstein said further, "Do not accept traditional concepts without reexamining them. Even overthrow my relativity theory, if you find a better one. You must believe that the world is comprehensible to man. Of course, it's going to take an infinite long time to investigate this unified creation but to me that is the highest and most sacred duty-unifying physics."


George Gamow

Excerpt from his book, which hints that physics can be as interesting as any Hollywood movie, "It was a bank holiday, and Mr Tompkins, the little clerk of a big city bank, slept late and had a leisurely breakfast. Trying to plan his day, he first thought about going to some afternoon movie and, opening the morning paper, turned to the entertainment page. But none of the films looked attractive to him. He detested all this Hollywood stuff, with infinite romances between popular stars."

"If only there were at least one film with some real adventure, something unusual and maybe even fantastic about it. But there was none. Unexpectedly, his eye fell on a little notice in the corner of the page. The local university was announcing a series of lectures on the problems of modern physics, and this afternoon's lecture was to be about Einstein's Theory of Relativity. Well, that might be something!

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Gamow was Ukrainian-American cosmologist and experimental physicist. He was an early developer and advocate of the Big Bang Theory. Equally famous for his contributions to radioactivity and molecular genetics and most well-known for his popular science books like Mr Tompkins' adventures and One, Two, Three... Infinity.


Galileo Galilei

Galileo said, "It has been observed that missiles and projectiles describe a curved path of some sort; however no one has pointed out the fact that this path is a parabola. This and other facts, I have succeeded in proving; but what I consider even more important," he added, "that there have been opened up to this vast and most excellent science, of which my work is merely the beginning, ways and means by which, other minds more acute than mine will explore its remotest corners."

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Italian physicist Galileo Galilei is remembered mainly for his astronomical discoveries such as moons of Jupiter, rings of Saturn, sunspots and so on. But he also was a pioneering experimental scientist who helped debunk the Aristotelian belief systems, with measurements. He questioned authority, which is the most important trait in a scientist.


Paul Dirac

This very skinny mathematician had famously said, "A good deal of my research work in physics has consisted in not setting out to solve some particular problems, but simply examining mathematical quantities of a kind that physicists use, and trying to get them together in an interesting way regardless of any application that the work may have. It is simply, a search for pretty mathematics. It may turn out later that the work does have an application. Then one has had good luck."

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Dirac was a British theoretical physicist who made fundamental contributions to the development of quantum electrodynamics. He quantised the gravitational field, formulated the most logically perfect presentation of quantum mechanics and predicted the existence of anti-matter. At the same time, he was also equally famous for his strange, unapologetic behavior.


Marie Curie

She said, "All my life through, the new sights of nature made me rejoice like a child. We should not allow it to be believed that scientific progress can be reduced merely to mechanisms, machines and gearings, even though, such machinery also has its beauty. But there is, in science, a spirit of adventure and if I see anything vital around me, it is precisely that spirit of adventure, which guides me in my journey."

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

A leading figure in the history of sciences, Marie Curie was prohibited from higher education in her native Poland. She then moved to Paris in 1891 for studying physics and chemistry. She went on to become the only person in the world to have won the Nobel Prizes in both sciences.


Carl Sagan

Excerpt from the book The Dragons of Eden, "Without these experimental tests, very few physicists would have accepted general relativity. There are many hypotheses in physics of almost comparable brilliance and elegance that have been rejected because they did not survive such a confrontation with experiment. In my view, the human condition would be greatly improved if such confrontations and willingness to reject hypotheses were a regular part of our social, political, economic, religious and cultural lives."

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Carl Sagan was an American astrophysicist and author best known for his research on extraterrestrial life, including experimental demonstration of the production of amino acids from basic chemicals by radiation. He also assembled the first messages to space which went along with the Voyager spacecraft.


Michio Kaku

Michio Kaku is a Japanese-American theoretical physicist and futurist best known for his popular science books. Kaku was recognized as one of the pioneers of the string theory when he authored the first papers describing the string theory in a field form. He has said, "It must be a strange world not being a scientist, going through life not knowing, or maybe not caring, about where the air came from, and where the stars at night came from, or how far they are from us. I want to know."

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

The point made here is not necessarily to persuade the public to join sciences and maths professionally. He has in fact emphasized on the importance of scientific temper, as a way of life, to include observing and questioning in our day-to-day life.


Neil deGrasse Tyson

There are street artists, street musicians and even street actors. But there are no street physicists because in physics, you can't just make stuff up and presume that it is a proper account of nature. At the end of the day, you have to answer to nature.

Since everyone has nature to answer to, your creativity is simply discovering something about the physical world that somebody else would have eventually discovered exactly the same way. They might have come through a different path, but they would have landed in the same place.

Even though we name theorems and equations after the people who discover them, such as, Newton's laws of gravity, Kepler's laws of planetary motion, Einstein's energy-mass equation, and so on, somebody else would have also discovered them afterward, it is that simple."

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Neil Tyson is an American astrophysicist who was a postdoctoral research associate at Princeton University from 1991 to 1994. Tyson joined the Hayden Planetarium where he founded the Department of Astrophysics in 1997. He's best known for popularizing astronomy through his shows and books.


Richard Feynman

A poet once said, "The whole universe is in a glass of wine." We will probably never know in what sense he meant that, for poets do not write to be understood. But it is true that if we look at a glass of wine closely enough we see the entire universe.

There are the things of physics: the twisting liquid which evaporates depending on the wind and weather, the reflections in the glass, and our imagination adds the atoms. The glass is a distillation of the Earth's rocks, and in its composition we see the secrets of the universe's age, and the evolution of stars.

What strange arrays of chemicals are in the wine? How did they come to be? There are the ferments, the enzymes, the substrates, and the products. There in wine is found the great generalization: all life is fermentation. Nobody can discover the chemistry of wine without discovering, as did Louis Pasteur, the cause of much disease. How vivid is the claret, pressing its existence into the consciousness that watches it!

physics quotes which will inspire students to study physics and maths

Richard Feynman was an American scientist, widely considered to be one of the greatest and most influential theoretical physicists in history. He revolutionized the field of quantum mechanics and formulated the theory of quantum electrodynamics for which he received the Nobel Prize in physics in 1965.

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