Einstein said it?

Thu Jan 21 19:30:48 UTC 2010

        The first one looks like it's probably legitimate.  Google Books
has the following in snippet view:  "Whoever undertakes to set himself
up as judge in the field of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the
laughter of the gods."  It's from his 1954 book Ideas and Opinions,
apparently assembled as a collection of his earlier writings.

        YBQ does list the second:  "Only two things are infinite, the
universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."  But
it says it was attributed in 1990, which probably means it's spurious.

        The third one is probably spurious as well, although, as you
note on your blog, some web pages claim that Einstein had it on a sign
at his office, without claiming authorship.  Some sources attribute it
to William Cameron, who wrote this in Informal Sociology (1963), again
according to Google Books:  "However, not everything that can be counted
counts, and not everything that counts can be counted."

John Baker

-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf
Of Arnold Zwicky
Sent: Thursday, January 21, 2010 11:47 AM
Subject: Einstein said it?

on my blog, three suspicious quotes attributed to Albert Einstein:


I'm away from my copy of the YBQ, but Fred Shapiro will probably have
something to say about the quotes.


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

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