Five Severo Ochoa Quotes on Life

In this article, we talk about Severo Ochoa's legacy, life, and his thoughts through his best quotes.
Five Severo Ochoa Quotes on Life
Sergio De Dios González

Reviewed and approved by the psychologist Sergio De Dios González.

Last update: 06 March, 2024

Severo Ochoa was a man of great knowledge, kindness, and intelligence. It’s interesting to get to know one of the best scientists in the world through his quotes. Be as it may, he kept his private life private and focused on his work. There aren’t many documented interviews with Dr. Ochoa, but there are many documented medical breakthroughs for humankind.

Who was Severo Ochoa?

Severo Ochoa Albornoz was born in Asturias, Spain, in 1905. After graduating as a biochemist, he started teaching medicine in Madrid, Heidelberg, and Oxford. Unfortunately, the Spanish Civil War kept him from this and after World War II started, Ochoa decided to move to the United States of America.

Severo Ochoa fulfilled his professional career in this new country. There, he first synthesized ribonucleic acid (RNA) in his lab, which granted him the Nobel Prize in 1959, along with biochemist Arthur Kornberg, one of his best students.

For most of his life, Ochoa worked at New York University, but he quit this job in 1986 after the death of his wife. This really depressed him. Since that point on, he didn’t publish any studies nor continue teaching. After moving back to Madrid, Ochoa died in 1993.

Severo Ochoa looking ahead.

The best Severo Ochoa quotes

Severo Ochoa, along with Santiago Ramón y Cajal, are the only two scientists born in Spain to have received the prestigious Nobel Prize. In his biography “La emoción de descubrir” (The emotion of Discovery), you can witness his extraordinary legacy. Here are some of the best quotes by Severo Ochoa:

On the importance of science

“Science is always worth it because its discoveries, sooner or later, are always applied.”

To Ochoa, science was very important. He researched every day. He believed that, sooner or later, any breakthrough would help improve people’s lives.

On Talent

“At first, research needs more brains than means.”

If the researcher doesn’t have what it takes, having all the modern technologies will be of no use for someone who doesn’t know what they’re doing. You need to study and prepare yourself so your intelligence, interest, passion, and creativity help you reach your goals.

On life

“I’ve researched life and I don’t know why or what it’s for.”

What’s life? After decades of studies and achievements, Severo Ochoa never knew what life was, why it exists, or what it was for. Will science discover it one day? It seems that love is just out of science’s grasp.

Severo Ochoa with his wife Carmen.

On love

“A woman can change a man’s life.”

After his wife’s death, Ochoa fell into a deep depression. This is because his life changed thanks to his wife and they were together for 55 years.

On love and science

“Love is about physics and chemistry.”

Besides being right on the importance of love, Ochoa always knew that love affects humans’ chemistry and physics. However, he never thought science would take away from the magic of love.

Hopefully, these quotes on life and love by Ochoa helped you get to know him better. He was a sensitive, intelligent, and loving person who was very close to his own. He used his talent where it was needed the most, in medicine and love.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.