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william osler Quotes

William Osler Quotes

Birth Date: 1849-07-12 (Thursday, July 12th, 1849)



    • The greater the ignorance the greater the dogmatism.
    • The philosophies of one age have become the absurdities of the next, and the foolishness of yesterday has become the wisdom of tomorrow.
    • The natural man has only two primal passions, to get and to beget.
    • We can only instill principles, put the student in the right path, give him method, teach him how to study, and early to discern between essentials and non-essentials.
    • We are here to add what we can to, not to get what we can from, Life.
    • Humanity has but three great enemies: fever, famine, and war; of these by far the greatest, by far the most terrible, is fever.
    • The master word [work]... is the open sesame to every portal, the great equalizer in the world, the true philosopher's stone which transmutes all the base metal of humanity into gold.
    • Take the sum of human achievement in action, in science, in art, in literature-subtract the work of the men above forty, and while we should miss great treasures, even priceless treasures, we would practically be where we are today...The effective, moving, vitalizing work of the world is done between the ages of twenty-five and forty.
    • My second fixed idea is the uselessness of men above sixty years of age, and the incalculable benefit it would be in commercial, political, and in professional life, if as a matter of course, men stopped work at this age.
    • I have three personal ideals. One, to do the day's work well and not to bother about tomorrow...The second ideal has been to act the Golden Rule, as far as in me lay, toward my professional brethren and toward the patients committed to my care. And the third has been to cultivate such a measure of equanimity as would enable me to bear success with humility, the affection of my friends without pride, and to be ready when the day of sorrow and grief came to meet it with the courage befitting a man.
    • Nothing in life is more wonderful than faith-the one great moving force which we can neither weigh in the balance nor test in the crucible.
    • Medicine is a science of uncertainty and an art of probability.
    • No human being is constituted to know the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth; and even the best of men must be content with fragments, with partial glimpses, never the full fruition.
    • One of the first duties of the physician is to educate the masses not to take medicine.
    • Soap and water and common sense are the best disinfectants.
    • The best preparation for tomorrow is to do today's work superbly well.
    • The desire to take medicine is perhaps the greatest feature which distinguishes man from animals.
    • There are three classes of human beings: men, women and women physicians.
    • There is no more difficult art to acquire than the art of observation, and for some men it is quite as difficult to record an observation in brief and plain language.
    • To have striven, to have made the effort, to have been true to certain ideals - this alone is worth the struggle.
    • To study the phenomenon of disease without books is to sail an uncharted sea, while to study books without patients is not to go to sea at all.
    • Variability is the law of life, and as no two faces are the same, so no two bodies are alike, and no two individuals react alike and behave alike under the abnormal conditions which we know as disease.
    • The trained nurse has become one of the great blessings of humanity, taking a place beside the physician and the priest.
    • william osler

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