John Frederick William Herschel...on humility

The character of the true philosopher is to hope all things are not unreasonable. He who has seen obscurities which appeared impenetrable in physical and mathematical science suddenly dispelled, and the most barren and unpromising fields of inquiry converted, as if by inspiration, into rich and inexhaustable springs of knowledge and power, on a simple change of our point of view, or by merely bringing them to bear on some principle which it never occurred before to try, will surely be the very last to acquiesce in any dispiriting prospects of either the present or the future destinies of mankind; while on the other hand, the boundless views of intellectual and moral, as well as material relations which open on him on all hands in the course of those pursuits, the knowledge of the trivial place he occupies in the scale of creation, and the sense continually pressed upon him of his own weakness and incapacity to suspend or modify the slightest movement of the vast machinery he sees in action around him, must effectually convince him that humility of pretension, no less than confidence of hope, is what best becomes his character.

- Familiar Lectures on Scientific Subjects, 1866