James Dewey Watson
JAMES DEWEY WATSON  Macroknow Library

The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA.

" . . . [S]cience seldom proceeds in the straightforward logical manner imagined by outsiders. . . But even more important, I believe, there remains general ignorance about how science is "done.""1a CRICK

" . . . [W]e knew what to do: imitate Linus Pauling and beat him at his own game."1b

"All we had to do was to construct a set of molecular models and begin to play -- with luck, the structure would be a helix."1c

" . . . [O]ur reasoning was partially based upon simplicity."1d

" . . . he [Francis Crick] popped out with the idea that the perfect biological principle was the self-replication of the gene -- that is, the ability of the gene to be exactly copied when the chromosome number doubles during cell division."1e DAWKINS

"The idea of the genes' being immortal smelled right . . ."1f

"Even though he [Francis] was a physicist, he knew that important biological objects come in pairs."1g ARISTOTLE

"If this was DNA, I should create a bombshell by announcing its discovery. The existence of two intertwined chains with identical base sequences could not be a chance matter. Instead it would strongly suggest that one chain in each molecule had at some earlier stage served as the template for the synthesis of the other chain. Under this scheme, gene replication starts with the separation of its two identical chains. . . Thus, the essential trick of gene replication could come from the requirement that each base in the newly synthesized chain always hydrogen-bonds to an identical base."1i DAWKINS

" . . . [W]e had found the secret of life."1h

Interesting Link
  • Francis Harry Compton Crick, James Dewey Watson, and Maurice Hugh Frederick Wilkins. The Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 1962, "for their discoveries concerning the molecular structure of nucleic acids and its significance for information transfer in living material." http://nobelprize.org/medicine/laureates/1962/

* Italics in the original.

1 James D. Watson. The Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of the Structure of DNA. Foreword by Sir Lawrence Bragg. James D. Watson, 1968. New York, NY: The New American Library, Inc., 1969. (Reprint of a hardcover edition published by Atheneum Publishers, New York, NY.)
a Preface, at ix.
b Chp. 7, at 37.
Ibid., at 38.
 Ibid., at 38.
Chp. 18, at 84.
 Chp. 21, at 98.
Chp. 23, at 108.
 Chp. 25, at 118.
Chp. 26, at 126.