What Might Be VS What Is

It has hitherto been a serious impediment to the progress of knowledge, that is in investigating the origin or causes of natural productions, recourse has generally been had to the examination, both by experiment and reasoning, of what might be rather than what is. The laws or processes of nature we have every reason to believe invariable. Their results from time to time vary, according to the combinations of influential circumstances; but the process remains the same. Like the poet or the painter, the chemist may, and no doubt often' does, create combinations which nature never produced; and the possibility of such and such processes giving rise to such and such results, is no proof whatever that they were ever in natural operation.


Looking for one is less productive than observing the other.

Folksonomies: observation

/technology and computing/consumer electronics/camera and photo equipment/telescopes (0.588301)
/law, govt and politics (0.486463)
/science/physics/space and astronomy (0.162521)

influential circumstances (0.905891 (positive:0.457686)), time vary (0.834295 (neutral:0.000000)), natural productions (0.807209 (neutral:0.000000)), natural operation (0.751210 (neutral:0.000000)), combinations (0.590231 (positive:0.457686)), impediment (0.427878 (positive:0.281784)), processes (0.424699 (negative:-0.234498)), recourse (0.420351 (neutral:0.000000)), results (0.419534 (positive:0.267506)), chemist (0.384482 (neutral:0.000000)), VS (0.376677 (negative:-0.427023)), doubt (0.366896 (neutral:0.000000)), reasoning (0.364918 (neutral:0.000000)), possibility (0.359536 (positive:0.267506)), reason (0.359325 (negative:-0.502005)), experiment (0.351087 (neutral:0.000000)), examination (0.350072 (neutral:0.000000)), proof (0.346669 (neutral:0.000000)), rise (0.345360 (positive:0.267506)), origin (0.343441 (neutral:0.000000)), progress (0.343426 (positive:0.281784)), knowledge (0.320855 (positive:0.281784)), laws (0.316357 (negative:-0.502005)), poet (0.312915 (neutral:0.000000)), painter (0.312661 (neutral:0.000000))

Plato (0.987368): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc | yago
Scientific method (0.741906): dbpedia | freebase
Reason (0.741678): dbpedia | freebase
Logic (0.706135): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Nature (0.677785): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Science (0.643097): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Observation (0.634384): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Cognition (0.629403): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc

 Considerations on volcanos
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Scrope , George Poulett (1825), Considerations on volcanos, Phillips, Retrieved on 2012-06-22
  • Source Material [books.google.com]
  • Folksonomies: nature