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"Lord Bacon got a fhivering fit. He went to "Lord Arundel's houfe at Highgate, where he was put into a damp bed, and died a few days "afterwards."
Lord Bacon fays finely of Christianity, « There " hath not been discovered in any age, any phi" lofophy, opinion, religion, law, or difcipline, " which fo greatly exalts the common, and lessens "individual intereft, as the Chriftian religion "doth."
His rule respecting study, and the application of the powers of the mind, is excellent: " Prac"tife them chiefly at two feveral times; the one "when the mind is well difpofed, the other when "it is worst difpofed; that by the one you may "gain a great step, by the other you may work out the knots and ftondes of the mind, and "make the middle times more eafy and pleasant." Lord Bacon thus infcribed the feat in Gray's Inn Gardens, which he had put up to the memory of his friend Mr. Bettenham:
Francifcus Bacon Regis Sollicitor Generalis "Executor Teftamenti Jeremia Bettenham nuper "Lectoris bujus Hofpitij Viri innocentis abftinentis "&contemplativi Hanc Sedem in Memoriam ejuf"dem Jeremia exftruxit
"Anno Dom. 1609.”
Wilson, in fpeaking of the fentence paffed upon the Lord Treasurer, obferves, "Which fentence
"was pronounced by the Lord Chancellor Ba❝ con, who though he were of tranfcendent " parts, yet was he tainted with the fame infec"tion, and not many years after perifhed in his "own corruption; which fhews, that neither "example nor precept (he having feen fo many, " and been made capable of so much) can be a
pilot fufficient to any port of happiness (though "Reason be never fo able to direct) if Grace "doth not give the gale."
The following letter of Lord Bacon, is preferved in Sir Toby Mathews' Collection of Englifh Letters. It is not inferted in the Folio Edition of Lord Bacon's Works, but is a ftriking intance of the refources of the mind which this great though unfortunate man poffeffed; it is alfo an exquifite comment upon the celebrated fen-tence of Lactantius:
Eruditio inter profpera ornamentum-inter adverfa "refugium."
THE LORD VISCOUNT ST. ALBAN'S (BACON) TO
66 MY LORD,
"Amongst comforts, it is not the leaft to re
present to a man's felf the like
examples of " calamity
calamity in others. For examples make a quicker impreffion than arguments; and be"fides, they inform us of that which the Scrip"ture alfo propounds to us for our fatisfaction, This "that no new thing has happened to us. "they do the better, by how much the examples " are more like in circumftances to our own cafe, "and yet more particularly, if they fall upon "perfons who are greater and worthier than our"felves. For as it favours of vanity to match "ourfelves highly in our own conceit; fo, on the "other fide, it is a good and found conclufion, "that if our betters have fuftained the like events, "we have the lefs caufe to be grieved.
"In this kind of confolation I have not been "wanting to myfelf, though as a Chriftian I "have tafted (through God's great goodness) of higher remedies. Having therefore, through "the variety of my reading, fet before me many examples, both of ancient and latter times, my thoughts, I confefs, have chiefly stayed upon "three particulars, as both the most eminent and "most resembling; all three perfons who had
held chief place and authority in their coun"tries; all three ruined, not by war or any other disaster, but by justice and fentence, as delin"quents and criminals; and all three famous " writers. Infomuch as the remembrance of "their calamity is now to pofterity but as fome
* little night-piece, remaining amongst the fair and excellent tables of their acts and works. And all three (if that were anything to the matter) " are fit examples to quench any man's ambition "of rifing again; for that they were, every one of "them, reftored with great glory; but to their "further ruin and deftruction, all ending in a vio "lent death.
"The men were Demofthenes, Cicero, and Se "neca; perfons with whom I durft not claim any "affinity at all, if the fimilitude of our fortunes "had not contracted it.
"When I caft mine eyes upon these examples, I was carried further on to obferve, how they bore their fortunes; and principally how "they employed their times, being banished,
and difabled for public bufinefs; to the end "that I might learn by them, that fo they might "be as well my counsellors as my comforters. "Whereupon I happened to note how diverfly "their fortunes wrought upon their minds, efpecially in that point at which I aimed moft; "which was, the employing of their times and pens. In Cicero, I faw that, during his ba"nishment (which was almoft for two years) he "was fo foftened and dejected, as that he wrote "nothing but a few womanifh epiftles. And
yet, in my opinion, he had leaft reafon of the "three to be difcouraged; because, though it
"were judged (and judged by the highest kind "of judgment in form of a statute and law) "that he should be banished, and his whole "eftate confifcated and feized, and his houfes "pulled down; and that it should be highly "penal for any man to propound his repeals yet his cafe, even then, carried no great blot " of ignominy with it; for it was thought to be but a tempeft of popularity which overthrew
"Demofthenes, on the contrary fide, though his "cafe were foul, he being condemned for bribery, "and bribery in the nature of treafon and difloyalty, took yet fo little knowledge of his for"tune, as that, during his banishment, he bufied
himself, and intermeddled as much with mat"ters of State by letters, as if he had been still at "the helm, as appears by fome epiftles of his " which are extant.
"Seneca indeed, who was condemned for many corruptions and crimes, and banished into a folitary island, kept a mean: for though his pen "did not freeze, yet he abftained from intruding "into matters of business; but spent his time in "writing books of excellent argument and use "for all ages. Thefe examples confirmed me "much in a refolution (to which I was other"wife inclined) to spend my time wholly in writing, and to put forth that poor talent, or "half