In quotes, Adams quotes refers to a listing of noted and or famous statements by Henry Adams.

The following is a work-in-progress listing of Adams quotes:

“Everything in this universe has its regular waves and tides. Electricity, sound, the wind, and I believe every part of organic nature will be brought someday within this law. The laws which govern animated beings will be ultimately found to be at bottom the same with those which rule inanimate nature, and as I entertain a profound conviction of the littleness of our kind, and of the curious enormity of creation, I am quite ready to receive with pleasure any basis for a systematic conception of it all. I look for regular tides in the affairs of man, and, of course, in our own affairs. In ever progression, somehow or other, the nations move by the same process which has never been explained but is evident in the oceans and the air. On this theory I should expect at about this time, a turn which would carry us backward.”
— Henry Adams (1863), “Letter to Charles Gaskell” (Oct) [1]

“Altogether, we go on with placidity unequalled, and the only question is what we live for. Nothing seems to come of it?”
— Henry Adams (1878), “Letter to Charles Gaskell” (Aug 21) [2]

Social chemistry—the mutual attraction of equivalent human molecules—is a science yet to be created, for the fact is my daily study and only satisfaction in life.”
— Henry Adams (1885), “Letter to Clover Adams” (Apr 12) [3]

“A period of about twelve years measured the beat of the pendulum. After the Declaration of Independence [4 Jul 1776], twelve years had been needed to create an efficient Constitution [17 Sep 1787]; another twelve years of energy brought a reaction against the government then created; a third period of twelve years was ending in a sweep toward still greater energy; and already a child could calculate the result of a few more such returns.”
— Henry Adams (1890), A History of the United States of America (Ѻ)

“An atom is a man and Maxwell’s demon, who runs the second law, ought to be made president.”
— Henry Adams (1903), “Letter to Brooks Adams”, May 2 [4]

“Gentle mathematicians and physicists still cling to their laws of thermodynamics, and are almost epileptic in their convulsive assurances that they have reached a generalization which will hold good. Perhaps it will. Who cares?”
Henry Adams (1903), “Letter to Charles Gaskell” (Jun 14) [5]

“Intimates are predestined.”
— Henry Adams (1907), The Education of Henry Adams (§13: The Perfection of Human Society) (Ѻ)

“A dynamic law requires that two masses – nature and man – must go on, reacting upon each other, without stop, as the sun and comet react upon each other, and that any appearance of stoppage is illusive.”
— Henry Adams (1907), The Education of Henry Adams; cited by Paul Staiti (2001) in “Winslow Homer and the Drama of Thermodynamics” (Ѻ)

“On the physico-chemical law of development and dynamics, our society has reached what is called the critical point where it is near a new phase or equilibrium.”
— Henry Adams (1908), “Letter to Charles Gaskell” (Sep 27) [6]

“The solution of mind is certainly in the magnet.”
— Henry Adams (1908), “Letter to Charles Gaskell” (Sep 27) [6]

“I have run my head hard up against a form of mathematics that grinds my brains out. I flounder like a sculpin in the mud. It is called the ‘law of phases’, and was invented at Yale [by Gibbs]. No one shall persuade me that I am not a phase.”
— Henry Adams (1908), “Letter to Elizabeth Cameron” (Sep 29) [7]

“I’m looking for a ‘young and innocent physico-chemist who wants to earn a few dollars by teaching an idiot what is the first element of theory and expression in physics.’”
— Henry Adams (1908), “Note to John Jameson” (Dec) [8]

“Kelvin was a great man, and I am sorry I did not know enough mathematics to follow him instead of Darwin who led us all wrong.”
— Henry Adams (1909), “Letter to Charles Gaskell” (Ѻ)(Ѻ)

“My essay ‘The Rule of Phase [Applied to History]’ is a ‘mere intellectual plaything, like a puzzle’ [to Brooks]. I am interested in getting it into the hands of a ‘scientific, physico-chemical proofreader’ and I am willing to pay ‘liberally for the job’ [to Jameson].”
— Henry Adams (1909), Notes to Brooks Adams and John Jameson [8]

“I have been studying science for ten years past, with keen interest, noting down my phrases of mind each year; and every new scientific method I try, shortens my view of the future. The last—thermodynamics—fetches me out on sea-level within ten years. I’m sorry Lord Kelvin is dead. I would travel a few thousand-million miles to discuss with him the thermodynamics of socialistic society. His law is awful in its rigidity and intensity of result.”
— Henry Adams (1909), “Letter to Charles Gaskell” (May 2) [9]

“If thought is capable of being classified with electricity, or will with chemical affinity, as a mode of motion, it seems necessary to fall at once under the second law of thermodynamics. Of all possible theories, this is likely to prove the most fatal to professors of history.”
— Henry Adams (1910), A Letter to American Teachers of History

“Thanks for yours of the 5th. I am sorry to have missed you, for I would have much liked to hear what you have to say, not merely on the general subject of physico-human sociology [see: physico-chemical sociology; physico-chemical social dynamics], but also on the point of its possible bearings on education. The strongest evidence that I can see in favor of the extension of the second law of thermodynamics to social and intellectual phenomena, is what seems to me the rapid atrophy of the social mind. Since two, society seems to me to be torpid except in rehashing its oldest commonplaces. In the world I live in, thought seems to me to be quite dead. Of course, this impression is probably caused by age, and is a result of mental fatigue; but I observe that it is shared by other people, and even by a considerable class of people; so that I am led to wish that I might hear the subject discussed by someone who had larger information than I. I will send you a little volume, touching incidentally on the subject, which has just come out under my name, dealing with the purely literary side of the matter. Of course, it is on the physicists that the first duty lies of frankly disclosing their scheme. I have an idea that Ostwald, while asserting the law to its full limits, expresses the opinion that the human race does not yet show proof of degradation. I am curious to know whether this is an accepted idea in his school. If so, it shifts the issue to a simple one of fact.”
Henry Adams (1912), “Letter to Edward H. Davis” (Ѻ), Jan 12

See also
Goethe quotes

1. (a) Adams, Henry. (1863). “Letter to Charles Gaskell”, Oct.
(b) Adams, Henry. (1982). The Letters of Henry Adams, Volume 1: 1858-1868 (editor: Jacob Levenson) (pgs. 395-96). Harvard University Press.
(c) Stevenson, Elizabeth. (1997). Henry Adams: a Biography (pg. 69). Transaction Publishers.
(d) Taylor, Matthew A. (2008). Universes Without Selves: Cosmologies of the Non-Human in American Literature (pg. 108), PhD dissertation, Johns Hopkins University. ProQuest, 2009.
2. (a) Adams, Henry. (1878). “Letter to Charles Gaskell”, Aug.
(b) Adams, Henry. (1992). Henry Adams: Selected Letters (editor: Ernest Samuels) (pg. 150). Harvard University Press.
3. (a) Adams, Henry. (1885). “Letter to Marian Adams”, April 12.
(b) Adams, Henry. (1989). The Letters of Henry Adams: 1892-1899, Volume 4 (equivalent human molecules, pg. xxviii). Harvard University Press.
4. (a) Adams, Henry. (1903). “Letter to Brooks Adams”, May 2
(b) Leff, Harvey S. and Rex, Andrew F. (2002). Maxwell’s Demon: Entropy, Information, Computing (Henry Adams, pgs. 44-46; ref 10, pg. 57). Adam-Hilger.
5. (a) Adams, Henry. (1903). “Letter to Charles Gaskell”, Jun 14.
(b) Adams, Henry. (1992). Henry Adams: Selected Letters (editor: Ernest Samuels) (pgs. 437-39). Harvard University Press.
6. (a) Adams, Henry. (1908). “Letter to Charles Gaskell”, Sep 27.
(b) Adams, Henry. (1992). Henry Adams: Selected Letters (editor: Ernest Samuels) (pg. 504-06). Harvard University Press.
7. (a) Adams, Henry. (1908). “Letter to Elizabeth Cameron” (Sep 29), in: Letters of Henry Adams, 1892-1918 (editor: Worthington Ford) (pg. 510). Kraus Reprints, 1969.
(b) Schwehn, Mark R. (1978). The Making of Modern Consciousness in America: the Works and Careers of Henry Adams and William James (pg. 109). Stanford University.
(c) Samuels, Ernest. (1989). Henry Adams (pg. 401). Harvard University Press.
8. Samuels, Ernest. (1989). Henry Adams (human molecule, pg. 115; physico-chemical, pgs. 401, 411; “Note to John Jameson”, pg. 409). Harvard University Press.
9. (a) Adams, Henry. (1909). “Letter to Charles Milnes Gaskell”, May 02.
(b) Adams, Henry, Samuels, Ernest. (1992). Henry Adams, Selected Letters (thermodynamics, pgs. 438, 466, 517). Harvard University Press.

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