John Ray

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The Wisdom of God Manifested in the Works of the Creation.

John Ray (29 November 162717 January 1705) was an English naturalist, sometimes referred to as the father of English natural history.

Quotes[edit]

  • I cannot but look upon the strange Instinct of this noisome and troublesome Creature a Louse, of searching out foul and nasty Clothes to harbor and breed in, as an Effect of divine Providence, design'd to deter Men and Women from Sluttishness and Sordidness.
  • There is no doubt, that man is not built to be a carnivorous animal... What a sweet, pleasing and innocent sight is the spectacle of a table served that way and what a difference to a make up of fuming animal meat, slaughtered and dead! Man in no way has the constitution of a carnivorous being. Hunt and voracity are unnatural to him. Man has neither the sharp pointed teeth or claws to slaughter his prey. On the contrary his hands are made to pick fruits, berries and vegetables and teeth appropriate to chew them.
    • John Ray, as quoted in: Vergil Z. Ozeca (2010) Humanimal, p. 171

English Proverbs (1670)[edit]

If wishes were horses, beggars might ride.

John Ray. A compleat collection of English proverbs. To which is added, A collection of English words not generally used. 1670/1813. Next page numbers from 1813 ed.

  • In a calm sea every man is a pilot.
    • p. 4
  • Like blood, like good, and like agen make the happiest marriage.
    • p. 48
  • He speaks Bear-garden.<br That is, such rude and uncivil, or sordid and dirty language, as the rabble that frequent those sports, are wont to use.
    • p. 55
  • Money and friendship bribe justice.
    Beauty is potent, but money is omnipotent.
    • p. 94
  • Prate us but prade; it's money buys land
    Money begets money.
    • p. 140
  • If wishes were butter-cakes, beggars might bite.
    If wishes were thrushes, beggars would eat birds.
    If wishes would bide, beggars would ride.
    • p. 174
  • As full as a piper's bag; as a tick.
As full as a toad is of poison.
As full as a jade, quoth the bride.
As gant as a greyhound.
As glad as a fowl of a fair day.
To go like a cat upon a hot bake-stone.
To go out like a candle in a snuff.
As good as George of Green.
To go like a cat upon a hot bake-stone.
  • p. 228

Quotes about John Ray[edit]

  • I do not know who first emphasized the need for a clear understanding of the sense in which the term species is to be applied. In the second half of the seventeenth century Ray shows some degree of concern on this matter. In the introduction to the Historia Plantarum, 1686, he discusses some of the difficulties and lays down the principle that varieties which can be produced from the seed of the same plant are to be regarded as belonging to one species, being, I believe, the first to suggest this definition.

External links[edit]

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