James Maxwell Clerk Quotes

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James Maxwell Clerk Quotes

It would of course be a great step forward if we succeeded in combining the gravitational field and the electromagnetic field into a single structure. Only so could the era in theoretical physics inaugurated by Faraday and James Clerk Maxwell be brought to a satisfactory close.
— Albert Einstein —

In 1862, the Scottish mathematician James Clerk Maxwell developed a set of fundamental equations that unified electricity and magnetism. On his deathbed, he coughed up a strange sort of confession, declaring that "something within him" discovered the famous equations, not he. He admitted he had no idea how ideas actually came to him-they simply came to him. William Blake related a similar experience, reporting of his long narrative poem Milton: "I have written this poem from immediate dictation twelve or sometimes twenty lines at a time without premeditation and even against my will." Johann Wolfgang von Goethe claimed to have written his novella The Sorrows of Young Werther with practically no conscious input, as though he were holding a pen that moved on its own.

— David Eagleman

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