Fontenelle on Science

We like to regard as useless what we do not know; it is a kind of revenge; and since mathematics and physics are rather generally unknown, they rather generally pass for useless. The source of their misfortune is plain; they are prickly, wild, and hard to reach ….

Such is the destiny of sciences handled by few. The usefulness of their progress is imperceptible to most people, especially if they are practiced by professions not particularly illustrious.