A quotation by Pierre Duhem


The whole theory of electrostatics constitutes a group of abstract ideas and general propositions, formulated in the clear and concise language of geometry and algebra, and connected with one another by the rules of strict logic. This whole fully satisfies the reason of a French physicist and his taste for clarity, simplicity and order ... Here is a book [by Oliver Lodge] intended to expound a new theory. In it are nothing but strings which move around pulleys, which roll around drums, which go through pearl beads ... toothed wheels which are geared to one another and engage hooks. We thought we were entering the tranquil and neatly ordered abode of reason, but we find ourselves in a factory.
La Théorie Physique


JOC/EFR February 2006

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