Friday 30 December 2011

Don't trust your memory...

Don't trust your memory, it will trip you up, what is clear now will grow obscure; what is found will be lost. Write down everything in full; time so spent now will be time saved in the end, when you offer you researches to the discriminating public. Don't be satisfied with a dry-as-dust item: clothe a skeleton of fact and breathe life into it with thoughts that glow; let the paper smell of the woods. There's a pulse in each new fact; catch the rhythm before it dies.

Eliot Coues.
Field Ornithology. Salem MA. Naturalists Agency. 1874

Online copy HERE

Cited in Field Notes on Science & Nature. Canfield et al., 2011