[Ads-l] A theory is not complete until you can explain it to the man in the street

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Thu Sep 30 22:32:22 EDT 2021


Back on October 20, 2019 I posted a message about the following saying
together with a link to a QI article about it:

An alleged scientific discovery has no merit unless it can be
explained to a barmaid

In response to my message James A. Landau presented a very interesting
1878 citation for a passage in the same family as the expression in
the subject line.

http://listserv.linguistlist.org/pipermail/ads-l/2019-October/155719.html

The Quote Investigator website now has an article on this topic. The
earliest match appeared in a letter dated February 25, 1825 from
French mathematician Joseph Diez Gergonne to Belgian astronomer and
statistician Adolphe Quetelet:

A theory is not complete until you can explain it to the person in the street
https://quoteinvestigator.com/2021/09/30/street/

Feedback welcome
Garson O'Toole

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The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org


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