Abraham Pais Quotes

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Abraham Pais

Abraham (Bram) Pais
Born (1918-05-19)May 19, 1918
Amsterdam, Netherlands
Died July 28, 2000(2000-07-28) (aged 82)
Copenhagen, Denmark
Residence Netherlands, United States, Denmark
Nationality Dutch, American
Fields Physicist
Institutions Rockefeller University
Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton
Niels Bohr Institute
Alma mater University of Amsterdam, University of Utrecht
Doctoral advisor Léon Rosenfeld
Known for G-parity, treatment of SU(6) symmetry breaking
Notable awards Andrew Gemant Award (1993)
Spouse Jeanne
Lila Lee Atwill
Ida Nicolaisen

One of the absolute rules I learned in the war was, don't know anything you don't need to know, because if you ever get caught they will get it out of you.
Abraham Pais
I spent every night until four in the morning on my dissertation, until I came to the point when I could not write another word, not even the next letter. I went to bed. Eight o'clock the next morning I was up writing again.
Abraham Pais
Once I even took the train to Utrecht, forty miles from Amsterdam, with my yellow star, this star which I still have. Why did I go? I just wanted to visit some friends. I was a little bit crazy, a little bit insane.
Abraham Pais
Of course, relative citation frequencies are no measure of relative importance. Who has not aspired to write a paper so fundamental that very soon it is known to everyone and cited by no one?
Abraham Pais
One of the things I learned, one of the strangest things, is how to think. There was nothing else to do. I couldn't see people, or go for a walk in the forest. All I had was my head and my books, and I thought a lot.
Abraham Pais
The rule of the game was never assume that anybody, however honorable, would be able to stand up under torture. If Mr. X, who knew where I was, was caught for some reason, I should move.
Abraham Pais