It is attention, more than any difference between minds and men.—In this is the source of poetic genius, and of the genius of discovery in science.—It was this that led Newton to the invention of fluxions, and the discovery of gravitation, and Harvey to find out the circulation of the blood, and Davy to those views which laid the foundation of modern chemistry.
The power of applying attention, steady and undissipated, to a single object, is the sure mark of a superior genius.
If I have made any improvement in the sciences, it is owing more to patient attention than to anything beside.
If there be anything that can be called genius, it consists chiefly in ability to give that attention to a subject which keeps it steadily in the mind, till we have surveyed it accurately on all sides.
Few things are impracticable in themselves; and it is for want of application, rather than of means, that men fail of success.
Attention makes the genius; all learning, fancy, science, and skill depend upon it.—Newton traced his great discoveries to it.—It builds bridges, opens new worlds, heals diseases, carries on the business of the world.—Without it taste is useless, and the beauties of literature unobserved.