If you want some solace from the tedium of news about financial troubles, presidents working on spiral-bound pitchbooks for investment committees, and politicians and friends defending bail-jumpers on the grounds of character and acquaintance, then you might like this remark from Feynman about Maxwell’s equations:
From a long view of the history of mankind ? seen from, say, ten thousand years from now ? there can be little doubt that the most significant event of the 19th century will be judged as Maxwell’s discovery of the laws of electrodynamics. The American Civil War will pale into provincial insignificance in comparison with this important scientific event of the same decade.