Whither Scientia?


The title of my personal webpage is the latin phrase, Crescat Scientia.  The literal translation of this phrase is “Let knowledge increase [=grow]” according to John Garger, and embodies the ideal to which all scientific endeavors should strive.  I selected it as an homage to my former employer, The Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia (now the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University). The phrase is featured on the official seal of the Academy, reproduced above. This seal, largely unknown to even most Academy staff, is now used primarily on official documents. I was immediately drawn to the image of a sun rising over craggy islands reminiscent of those that dot the southern Pacific ocean and have used it whenever I have needed a logo for the Academy. I’ve corresponded with Robert McCracken Peck, Academy senior fellow and author of A Glorious Enterprise: The Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia and the Making of American Science to identity the origin of the seal and the wording on it, but to date we have not been successful. Check back and hopefully we’ll find an answer.

Other uses of Crescat Scientia:

  • Perhaps most famously, the first part of the motto of the University of Chicago: Crescat scientia; vita excolatur

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