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Oliver Sacks

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We had a large old-fashioned battery, a wet cell, in the kitchen, hooked up to an electric bell. The bell was too complicated to understand at first, and the battery, to my mind, was more immediately attractive, for it contained an earthenware tube with a massive, gleaming copper cylinder in the middle, immersed in a bluish liquid, all this inside an outer glass casing, also filled with fluid, and containing a slimmer bar of zinc. It looked like a miniature chemical factory of sorts, and I thought I saw little bubbles of gas, at times, coming off the zinc. The Daniell cell (as it was called) had a thoroughly nineteenth-century, Victorian look about it, and this extraordinary object was making electricity all by itself—not by rubbing or friction, but just by the virtue of its own chemical reactions.
p. 160

Oliver Sacks

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Day One: Rang bell, cat f**ked off. (Oh dear.)
Day Two: Rang bell, cat went and answered door.
Day Three: Rang bell, cat said he had eaten earlier. (Cheeky bugger.)
Day Four: Went to ring bell, but cat had stolen batteries.
Final Day – Day Five: Went and rang bell with new batteries, but cat put his paw on bell so it only made a thunk noise. Then cat rang his own bell.
I ate food.

Eddie Izzard

At this time, space was supposed to be filled with an ether, a substance which might well serve, among other functions, to transmit forces across space. So long as such an ether could be called on, the transmission of force to a distance was easy to understand; it was like ringing a distant bell by pulling a bell-rope.

James Jeans

There was a time, it says in books, that the Icelandic people had only one national treasure: a bell . . . When the king decreed that the people of Iceland were to relinquish all of their brass and copper so that Copenhagen could be rebuilt following the war, men were sent to fetch the ancient bell at ?ingvellir by Öxará.

Halldor Laxness

I have heard of a monk who in his cell, had a glorious vision of Jesus revealed to him. Just then, a bell rang, which called him away to distribute loaves of bread among the poor beggars at the gate. He was sorely tried as to whether he should lose a scene so inspiring. He went to his act of mercy; and when he came back, the vision remained more glorious than ever.

Theodore L. Cuyler

It can scarcely be denied that the fundamental phenomena which first led mankind into chemical inquiries are those of combustion. But, as we have just seen, minimized beings would be unable to produce fire at will, except by certain chemical reactions, and would have little opportunity of examining its nature. They might occasionally witness forest fires, volcanic eruptions, etc.; but such grand and catastrophic phenomena, though serving to reveal to our supposed Lilliputians the existence of combustion, would be ill suited for quiet investigation into its conditions and products. Moreover, considering the impossibility they would experience of pouring water from one test tube to another, the ordinary operations of analytical chemistry and of all manipulations depending on the use of the pneumatic trough would remain forever a sealed book.

William Crookes
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