19th-century Astronomer Quotes
Dying visions of angels and Christ and God and heaven are confined to credibly good men. Why do not bad men have such visions? They die of all sorts of diseases; they have nervous temperaments; they even have creeds and hopes about the future which they cling to with very great tenacity; why do not they rejoice in some such glorious illusions when they go out of the world?
Comets cannot be homes of life; they are not sufficiently condensed; indeed, they are probably but loose congeries of small stones. But even if comets were of planetary size it is clear that life could not be supported on them; water could not remain in the liquid state on a world that rushed from one such extreme of temperature to another.
The evidence at present available points strongly to the conclusion that the spirals are individual galaxies, or island universes, comparable with our own galaxy in dimension and in number of component units.
Stating his conviction on the nature of nebulae during the Shapley-Curtis debate on 26 Apr 1920 to the National Academy of Sciences.