according to http://www.admiroutes.asso.fr/larevue/2005/61/serendipite.htm and the following extract in French. It is said that in his manuscript Pasteur wrote des esprits préparés -> prepared minds instead of les esprits préparés -> the prepared mind and the mistake seems to result of an error during the printing... but the current version the prepared mind is still much more famous
Une remarque - dont la citation a été souvent erronée - sur le rôle du hasard a été faite par le chimiste Louis Pasteur dans son discours d'introduction de doyen de la nouvelle Faculté des Sciences à Lille en 1854 :
C'était dans cette mémorable année 1822. Ørsted, physicien Suédois [Danois], tenait en mains un fils de cuivre réuni par ses extrémités aux deux pôles d'une pile de Volta. Sur sa table se trouvait une aiguille aimantée placée sur son pivot, et tout à coup il vit, (par hasard diriez- vous peut-être, mais souvenez-vous que, dans les sciences d'observation le hasard ne favorise que des esprits préparés) il vit tout à coup l'aiguille se mouvoir et prendre une position très différente de celle que lui assigne le magnétisme terrestre. Un fil traversé par un courant électrique fait dévier de sa position une aiguille aimantée. Voila, messieurs, la naissance du télégraphe actuel.
Dans son manuscrit, Pasteur écrivit 'des esprits préparés'. Au lieu de cela, fut mprimé 'les esprits préparés', comme Mirko Grmek le remarqua par la suite. Au-dessus d'une porte de la Harvard Medical School, on lit d'ailleurs la citation Chance favors only the prepared mind (Le hasard ne favorise qu'un esprit préparé).
- Let me tell you the secret that has lead me to my goal. My strength lies solely in my tenacity.
- As quoted in There's a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem (2001) by Wayne W. Dyer
But this has Dyer's or a Wikiquotidian's error in it: while "lead" has a pronounciation that makes the quote sound accurate, the sense of "[to] guide or precede" has "lead" (pron. leed) as present tense and "led" as past and past perfect tenses. Clearly in some sense this should read "...has led me...". This entry requires research as to whether it is the Dyer work or its contributor that has made either a spelling error or a typo.
--Jerzy•t 15:05, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
- On an Amazon.com book search, it appears in Dyer's book as "led" (p. 226). I'll make the correction. - InvisibleSun 15:27, 10 April 2007 (UTC)
Wikipedia(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Louis_Pasteur#Faith_and_spirituality) says the quote about Breton peasants is apocryphal, and Wikiquote gives it with a link to dubious religious propagandistic book.
- —This unsigned comment is by 126.96.36.199 (talk • contribs) .
- There was no link provided, there was a source of a quote cited. This new info has been added to the comments, and the quote has now been moved to the "Disputed" section of the page:
- The more I know, the more nearly is my faith that of the Breton peasant. Could I but know all I would have the faith of a Breton peasant woman.
- As quoted in "Louis Pasteur" in The Catholic Encyclopedia (1913)
- Variant: I have the faith of a Breton peasant and by the time I die I hope to have the faith of a Breton peasant's wife.
- As quoted in Letter to an Atheist (2007) by Michael Patrick Leahy, p. 61
- His descendents, Louis-Pasteur Vallery-Radot, and Maurice Vallery-Radot disputed the authenticity of such statements. According to Maurice Vallery-Radot (Pasteur, 1994, p. 378), the attributed assertion first appeared in the Semaine religieuse .... du diocèse de Versailles (6 October 1895), p. 153, shortly after the death of Pasteur.
- There is not enough detail provided in the immediately available sources of the reasons why they dispute this to move it clearly into the "Misattributed" section at this time. ~ Kalki (talk · contributions) 19:26, 20 March 2010 (UTC)
Louis Pasteur on Evolution
This quote should be added.
"Virulence appears in a new light which cannot but be alarming to humanity; unless nature, in her evolution down the ages (an evolution which, as we now know, has been going on for millions, nay, hundreds of millions of years), has finally exhausted all the possibilities of producing virulent or contagious diseases -- which does not seem very likely."
Source: Cuny, Hilaire. 1965. Louis Pasteur: The man and his theories. Translated by P. Evans. London: The Scientific Book Club.
Just debunking some pseudo-science 
Philosophy in a bottle of wine
The quotation "There is more philosophy in a bottle of wine than in all the books of the world" seems a very doubtful attribution. I don't doubt that it's found in some mammoth book of zingers but I would not count that as a reliable source. If he said it surely it would be found in his writings or an early biography. The earliest I could find it is from a 1977 Italian book where it is given in French as "Il y a plus de philosophie dans une bouteille de vin que dans tous les livres" and attributed to Pasteur.