Electricity is a general term encompassing a variety of phenomena resulting from the presence and flow of electric charge. These include many easily recognizable phenomena, such as lightning, static electricity, and the flow of electrical current in an electrical wire. In addition, electricity encompasses less familiar concepts such as the electromagnetic field and electromagnetic induction.
- And fire a mine in China, here
With sympathetic gunpowder.
- Samuel Butler, Hudibras, Part II (1664), Canto III, line 295.
- Striking the electric chain wherewith we are darkly bound.
- Controlling fires is an enormously difficult challenge. Our research has shown that by applying large electric fields we can suppress flames very rapidly. We're very excited about the results of this relatively unexplored area of research.
- Ludovico Cademartiri, 241st National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society; as quoted in “Taming the flame: Electrical wave 'blaster' could provide new way to extinguish fires”, American Chemical Society, Phys.org, (March 28, 2011).
- We will make electricity so cheap that only the rich will burn candles.
- Thomas Edison, in a statement to a reporter during the first public demonstration of his incandescent (31 December 1879), as quoted in Chronology of Americans and the Environment (2011) by Chris J. Magoc, p. 46.
- In 1881, Edison built electricity generating stations at Pearl Street in Manhattan and Holborn in London.
Within a year, he was selling electricity as a commodity. A year later, the first electric motors were driving manufacturing machinery.
Yet by 1900, less than 5% of mechanical drive power in American factories was coming from electric motors. The age of steam lingered.
- Tim Harford, “Why didn't electricity immediately change manufacturing?”, BBC, (21 August 2017).
- Is it a fact—or have I dreamt it—that by means of electricity, the world of matter has become a great nerve, vibrating thousands of miles in a breathless point of time? Rather, the round globe is a vast head, a brain, instinct with intelligence: or shall we say it is itself a thought, nothing but thought, and no longer the substance which we dreamed it.
- Nathaniel Hawthorne, The House of the Seven Gables (1851), The Flight of Two Owls.
- Without electricity, there can be no art.
- Speed the soft intercourse from soul to soul,
And waft a sigh from Indus to the Pole.
- Alexander Pope, Eloise to Abelard (1717), line 57.
- I'll put a girdle round about the earth
In forty minutes.
- Too like the lightning, which doth cease to be
Ere one can say "It lightens."
- At the beginning of the Great Depression, the vast majority of rural communities across the United States had little or no access to electricity. The cost of connecting to private electric lines was so prohibitive that many rural communities turned to organizing amongst themselves to find creative solutions to electrification. In 1935, the federal government established the Rural Electrification Administration (REA) to support the formation of rural electric cooperatives. Over the following decades, this initiative thoroughly transformed rural life, extending electricity to rural businesses, farms, schools, and households and establishing a large network of utilities cooperatives that continue to provide services to rural areas today.
- Southern Oral History Program, UNC Center for the Study of the American South, "Rural Electrification",
- One can prophesy with a Daniel's confidence that skilled electricians will settle the battles of the near future. But this is the least. In its effect upon war and peace, electricity offers still much greater and more wonderful possibilities. To stop war by the perfection of engines of destruction alone, might consume centuries and centuries. Other means must be employed to hasten the end.
- Electric current, after passing into the earth travels to the diametrically opposite region of the same and rebounding from there, returns to its point of departure with virtually undiminished force. The outgoing and returning currents clash and form nodes and loops similar to those observable on a vibrating cord. To traverse the entire distance of about twenty-five thousand miles, equal to the circumference of the globe, the current requires a certain time interval, which I have approximately ascertained. In yielding this knowledge, nature has revealed one of its most precious secrets, of inestimable consequence to man. So astounding are the facts in this connection, that it would seem as though the Creator, himself, had electrically designed this planet just for the purpose of enabling us to achieve wonders which, before my discovery, could not have been conceived by the wildest imagination.
- Nikola Tesla, in "The Transmission of Electrical Energy without wires as a means for furthering Peace" in Electrical World and Engineer (7 January 1905).
- Go hug your girlfriend! Or if you don't have any, go find one! You won't find the meaning of life with electricity!
Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations
- Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 218-19.
- Stretches, for leagues and leagues, the Wire,
A hidden path for a Child of Fire—
Over its silent spaces sent,
Swifter than Ariel ever went,
From continent to continent.
- William Henry Burleigh, The Rhyme of the Cable.
- While Franklin's quiet memory climbs to heaven,
Calming the lightning which he thence hath riven.
- Lord Byron, Age of Bronze, V.
- And stoic Franklin's energetic shade
Robed in the lightnings which his hand allay'd.
- Lord Byron, Age of Bronze, VIII.
- To put a girdle round about the world.
- George Chapman, Bussy d'Ambois, Act I, scene 1.
- A vast engine of wonderful delicacy and intricacy, a machine that is like the tools of the Titans put in your hands. This machinery, in its external fabric so massive and so exquisitely adjusted, and in its internal fabric making new categories of thought, new ways of thinking about life.
- Charles Ferguson, address reported in Stevens' Indicator, Volume XXXIV. No. 1 (1917).
- Notwithstanding my experiments with electricity the thunderbolt continues to fall under our noses and beards; and as for the tyrant, there are a million of us still engaged at snatching away his sceptre.
- Benjamin Franklin, comment on Tubgot's inscription in a letter to Felix Nogaret, who translated the lines into French.
- But matchless Franklin! What a few
Can hope to rival such as you.
Who seized from kings their sceptred pride
And turned the lightning's darts aside.
- Philip Freneau, On the Death of Benjamin Franklin.
- A million hearts here wait our call,
All naked to our distant speech—
I wish that I could ring them all
And have some welcome news for each.
- Christopher Morley, Of a Telephone Directory, in The Rocking Horse.
- An ideal's love-fraught, imperious call
That bids the spheres become articulate.
- Josephine L. Peabody, Wireless.
- This is a marvel of the universe:
To fling a thought across a stretch of sky—
Some weighty message, or a yearning cry,
It matters not; the elements rehearse
Man's urgent utterance, and his words traverse
The spacious heav'ns like homing birds that fly
Unswervingly, until, upreached on high,
A quickened hand plucks off the message terse.
- Josephine L. Peabody, Wireless.
- Eripuit cælo fulmen, mox sceptra tyrannis.
- He snatched the thunderbolt from heaven, the sceptre from tyrants.
- Anne Robert Jacques Turgot, Baron de Laune, inscription for the Houdon bust of Benjamin Franklin. See Condorcet, Life of Turgot, p. 200. Ed. 1786. Eripuit fulmenque Jovi, Phœboque sagittas. Modified from Anti-Lucretius. I. 5. 96, by Cardinal ee Polignac. Eripuit Jovi fulmen viresque tonandi. Marcus Manlius, Astronomica, I, 104. Line claimed by Frederick von der Trenck asserted at his trial before the Revolutionary Tribunal of Paris (July 9, 1794). See Gartenlaube, Last Hours of Baron Trenck.