### Quotations in Context: Einstein

Author(s):

Michael Molinsky (University of Maine at Farmington)

*“But there is another reason for the high repute of mathematics: it is mathematics that offers the exact natural sciences a certain measure of security which, without mathematics, they could not attain.”*

“As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain;

and as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.”
The two

Albert Einstein quotations above frequently appear without citation. For example, the first quotation is printed in the “They Say, What They Say, Let Them Say” pages at the beginning of E. T. Bell’s

*Men of Mathematics*, and the second can be found in the third volume of James R. Newman’s

*The World of Mathematics*. The quotations, placed side-by-side, might look somewhat contradictory at first glance, since one seems to indicate that mathematics is a boon to natural science, while the other appears to say that mathematics is of no use in describing the real world; however, both of these quotations actually originate from the same source and occur only a few sentences apart.