5
$\begingroup$

Hubbard and Hubbard (in "Vector Calculus...") attribute the following quote to Felix Klein: "Everyone knows what a curve is, until he has studied enough mathematics to become confused through the countless number of possible exceptions."

Does anyone know where this comes from? I'd be interested in the original German text.

$\endgroup$
7
$\begingroup$

Elementarmathematik vom höheren Standpunkte aus, Bd.2

Was eine Kurve ist, glaubt jeder Mensch zu wissen, bis er so viel Mathematik gelernt hat, daß ihn die unzähligen möglichen Abnormitäten verwirrt gemacht haben.

see also Quotations by Felix Klein for the English version.

$\endgroup$
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Thanks a lot! I now found it on page 187. I took the liberty to correct the German. $\endgroup$ – Frunobulax Jul 9 at 20:39
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @Frunobulax, Thanks for correction. I was trying a DeepL translation, and it was pretty bad. I can see your edits (others have to approve it as well). The translation is better now "What a curve is, everyone thinks they know until they have learned so much mathematics that the countless possible abnormalities have confused them." $\endgroup$ – M. Farooq Jul 9 at 20:57

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.