Evolving Thoughts

Evolution, culture, philosophy and chocolate! John Wilkins' continuing struggle to come to terms with impermanence... "Humanus sum, nihil humanum a me alienum puto" - Terence

Friday, September 16, 2005

On the philosophy of things

There have been naturalists who, if they could but add names to the steril lumber of their memories, cared little about the philosophy of things. These have justly thrown a disgrace upon the study they pursued, and have almost justified the paradox for which others have contended, that names which meant nothing were the best. But surely, if it be at all useful to know one natural object from another, the memory cannot have too many helps, in so vast a science as natural history is now become.
James Edward Smith, The natural history of the rarer lepidopterous insects of Georgia, 1797, volume 1, p iv.