Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB

a

6

25. Of Deformitie.

33. of Negociating. 26. Of nature in Man.

34. Of Fuction. 27. Of Custome and Education.

35. Of Praise. 28. Of Fortune.

36. Of Iudicature. 29. Of Studies.

37. Of vaine glory. 30. Of Ceremonies and Respects.

38. Of greatnes of Kingdomes. 31. Of Sutors.

39. Of the publike. 32. Of Followers.

40. Of Warre and peace. It is an octavo of 241 pages; and the two last Essays " Of the Publique," and “Of War and Peace,” although mentioned in the table of contents, are not contained in the body of the work."

This edition contains all the Essays which are in the preceding editions, except the Essay Of Honor and Reputation:" and the title in the former editions of the Essay “Of Followers and Friends,” is in this edition “Of Followers," and there is a separate Essay Of Friendship.” The Essays in Italics are in the former editions.

These Essays are more extensive than the Essays in the preceding editions, according to the manner of the author, who says, “I always alter when I add ; so that nothing is finished till all is finished."2

As a specimen, the Essay “Of Study,” in the first edition ends with the words - able to contend.” The edition of 1612 is the same as the former edition, but it thus continues “ Abeunt studia in mores;” “nay, there is no stond or impediment in the wit, but may be wrought out by fit studies: like as diseases of the body may have appropriate exercises; bowling is good for the stone and reins, shooting for the lungs and breast, gentle walking for the stomach, riding for the head, and the like; so, if a man's wit be wandering, let him study the mathematics; for in demonstrations, if his wit be called away never so little, he must begin again; if his wit be not apt to distinguish or find differences, let him study the schoolmen, for they are • Cymini sectores ;' if he be not apt to beat over matters, and to call upon one thing to prove and illustrate another, let him study the lawyers cases; so every defect of the mind may have a special receipt."

The next edition was in 1613.3 It is entitled,

66 The Essaies
Of Sr Francis Bacon Knight,
The Kings Aturney Generall.

His Religious Meditations.
Places of Perswasion and Disswasion.

Seene and allowed.
Printed at London for lohn Iaggard,
dwelling at the Hand and Starre,
betweene the two Temple

Gates 1613." It is a transcript of the edition of 1612, with the erroneous entries in the table of contents of the two Essays “Of the Publique” and Of Warre and Peace," which are omitted in the body of the work; but it contains a transcript from the editions of 1597 and 1606, of the Essay “ Of Honor and Reputation,” which is omitted in the edition of 1612.

In the year 1622, in his letter to the Bishop of Winchester, concerning his published and intended writings, he says, “ As for my Essays, and some other particulars of that nature, I count them but as the recreations of my other studies, and in that manner purpose to continue them; though I am not ignorant that those kind of writings would, with less pains and assiduity, perhaps yield more lustre and reputation to my name than the others I have in hand; but I judge the use a man should seek in publishing his writings before his death to be but an untimely anticipation of that which is proper to follow, and not to go along with him."

The next edition, which is a small quarto of 340 pages, was in 1625,5 and, on the 9th of April, 1626, Lord Verulam died.

a

· There is a copy in the British Museum, and in the Bodleian; and I have a copy.

3. “To Mr. Matthews : along with the Book De Sapientia Veterum. I Heartily thank you for your Letter, of the 24th of August, from Salamanca; and, in recompence, send you a little Work of mine, that has begun to pass the World. They tell me my Latin is turned into Silver, and become current. Had you been here, you shou'd have been my Inqui. sitor, before it came forth: but I think the greatest Inquisitor in Spain will allow it. One thing you must pardon me, if I make no haste to believe, that the World should be grown to such an Ecstasy, as to reject Truth in Philosophy, because the Author dissents in Religion; no more than they do by Aristotle or Averroes. My great Work goes forward; and after my manner, I always alter when I add : So that nothing is finish'd 'till all is finish'd! This I have wrote in the midst of a Term and Parliament; thinking no time so possess'd, but that I should talk of these Matters with so good and dear a Friend.-Gray's-Inn, Feb. 27, 1610."

. There is a copy in the Bodleian, and I have a copy.
• This is the same bookseller who published the edition of 1606.
• There is a copv in the British Museum and at Cambridge, and the copies are not uncommon.

a

66

It is entitled,

“ The Essayes or Covnsels Civill and Morall,
Of Francis Lo. Vervlam, Viscovnt St. Alban.

Newly written.
London, Printed by Iohn Haviland for

Hanna Barret. 1625." The Essays contained in the volume now published are an exact transcript of this edition of 1625, except that I have added the note in page 43.

of this edition, Lord Bacon sent a copy to the Marquis Fiat.1

There is a Latin edition of the Essays consisting of the Essays in the edition of 1625, except the two Essays of Prophecies, and of Masks and Triumphs, which seem not to have been translated.

The nature of the Latin edition and of the Essays in general is thus stated by Archbishop Tenison.2

The Essays, or Counsels Civil and Moral, though a By-work also, do yet make up a Book of greater weight by far, than the Apothegms: And coming home to Men's Business and Bosomes, his Lordship entertain’d this persuasion concerning them, that the Latine Volume might last as long as Books should last. His Lordship wrote them in the English Tongue, and enlarged them as Occasion serv'd, and at last added to them the Colours of Good and Evil, which are likewise found in his Book De Augmentis. The Latine Translation of them was a Work performed by divers Hands; by those of Doctor Hacket (late Bishop of Lichfield) Mr. Benjamin Johnson (the learned and judicious Poet) and some others, whose Names I once heard from Dr. Rawley; but I cannot now recal them. To this Latine Edition, he gave the Title of Sermones Fideles, after the manner of the Jews, who call'd the words Adagies, or Observations of the Wise, Faithful Sayings : 'that is, credible Propositions worthy of firm Assent, and ready Acceptance. And (as I think) he alluded more particularly, in this Title, to a passage in Ecclesiastes, where the Preacher saith that he sought to find out Verba Delectabilia, (as Tremellius rendreth the Hebrew) pleasant Words, (that is, perhaps, his Book of Canticles ;) and Verba Fidelia (as the same Tremellius) Faithful Sayings; meaning, it may be, his Collection of Proverbs. In the next Verse, he calls them Words of the Wise, and so many Goads and Nails given · Ab eodem Pastore,' from the same Shepherd (of the Flock of Israel.”] And of this translation, Bacon speaks in the following letter.

To Mr. TOBIE Matthew. “ It is tru, my labours are now most set to have those works, which I had formerly published, as that of Advancement of Learning, that of Hen. VII. that of the Essays, being retractate, and made more perfect, well translated into Latin by the help of some good pens, which forsake me not. For these modern languages will, at one time or other, play the bankrupt with books: and since I have lost much time with this age, I would be glad, as God shall give me leave, to recover it with posterity.

- For the Essay of Friendship, while I took your speech of it for a cursory request, I took my promise for a compliment. But since you call for it, I shall perform it."

In his letter to Father Fulgentio, giving some account of his writings, he says, “ The Novum Organum should immediately follow, but my Moral and Political writings step in between as being more finished. These are the History of King Henry the Seventh, and the small Book, which in your language you have called Saggi Morali, but I give it a graver title, that of Sermones Fideles, or Interiora Rerum, and these Essays will not only be enlarged in number but still more in substance."

6

a

1 Baconiana, 201.—“A Letter of the Lord Bacon's, in French, to the Marquis Fiat, relating to his Essays."

“Monsieur l'Ambassadeur mon File, ** Voyant que vostre Excellence faict et traite Mariages, non seulement entre les Princes d'Angleterre et de France, mais aussi entre les Langues (puis que faictes traduire non Liure de l'Advancement des Sciences en Francois) i'ai bien voulu vous envoyer mon Liure dernierement imprimé que i' avois pourveu pour vous, mais i' estois en doubte, de le vous envoyer, pour ce qu'il estoit escrit en Anglois. Mais a' cest' Heure poure la raison susdicte ie le vous envoye. C'est un Recompilement de mes Essays Morales et Civiles; mais tellement enlargiés et enrichiés, tant de Nombre que de Poix, que c'est de fait un oeuvre nouveau. Je vous baise les Mains, et reste,

“Vostre tres Affectionée Ami, ex tres humble Serviteur."

"The same in English, by the Publisher. “My Lord Embassador, my Son, “Seeing that your Exceliency makes and treats of Marriages, not only betwixt the Princes of France and England, but also betwixt their Languages (for you have caus'd my Book of the Advancement of Learning, to be Translated into French) I was much inelin'd to make you a Present of the last Book which I published, and which I had in readiness for you.

"I was sometimes in doubt, whether I ought to have sent it to you, because it was written in the English Tongue. But now, for that very Reason, I send it to yon. It is a Recompilement of my Essaies Moral, and Civil; but in such manner evlarged and enriched both in Number and Weight, that it is in effect, a new Work. I kiss your hands, and remain

Your most Affectionate friend and most humble Servant, &c. » Baconiana, page 60.

3 Ibid. page 196.

I have annexed an Appendix? containing “ A fragment of an Essay of Fame," which was published by Dr. Rawley in his Resuscitatio : and Of a King,'', which was published in 1648, in a volume entitled “Remains,” which also contains an Essay “On Death.” This Essay I have inserted in page 131 of this volume.3

During the life of Bacon, various editions of the Essays were published and in different languages: in 1618, in Italian :* in 1619, in French :5 in 1621, in Italian, and in French.)

Since Lord Bacon's death, the press has abounded with editions. In some of these editions the editors have substituted their own translations of the Latin for the beautiful English by Lord Bacon. How well they have succeeded the reader may judge by the following specimens. In a translation published by william H. Willymott, LL.))., A. D. 1720, he says, “Wanting an English Book for my Scholars to Translate, which might improve them in Sense and Latin at once, (Two Things which should never be divided in Teaching) I thought nothing more proper for that purpose than Bacon's Essays, provided the English, which is in some Places grown obselete, were a little reformed, and made more fashionable. Accordingly having by me his Lordship's Latin Volume of the Essays, (which as it was a later, so seems to be a perfecter Book) I fell to Translating it, not tying myself strictly to the Latin, but comparing both Languages together, and setting down that Sense (where there was any Difference) that seem'd the fullest and plainest." The following is a specimen : Dr. Willymott.

Lord Bacon. The principal Virtue of Prosperity, is Tem- « But to speak in a mean, the virtue of prosperance; of Adversity, Fortitude; which in Mo- perity is temperance, the virtue of adversity is rals is reputed the most heroical Virtue. Again, fortitude, which in morals is the more heroical Prosperity belongs to the Blessings of the old virtue. Prosperity is the blessing of the Old 'Testament; Adversity to the Beatitudes of the Testament, adversity is the blessing of the New, New, which are both in Reality greater, and which carrieth the greater benediction, and the carry a clearer Revelation of the Divine Favour. clearer revelation of God's favour. Yet even in Yet, even in the Old Testament, if you listen to the Old Testament, if you listen to David's David's Harp, you'll find more lamentable Airs, harp, you shall hear as many herse-like airs as than Triumphant ones.”

carols." So too Shaw has made a similar attempt, of which the following is a specimen, from the Essay "Of Goodness and Goodness of Nature." Lord Bacon.

Dr. Shaw. The parts and signs of goodness are many. “ There are several parts and signs of goodness. If a man be gracious and courteous to strangers, If a man be civil and courteous to strangers, it it shews he is a citizen of the world, and that his shews him a citizen of the world, whose heart is heart is no island cut off from other lands, but no island cut off from other lands, but a continent a continent that joins to them; if he be compas- that joins them. If he be compassionate to the sionate towards the afflictions of others, it shews afflicted, it shews a noble soul, like the tree which that his heart is like the noble tree that is is wounded when it gives the balm. If he easily wounded itself when it gives the balm: if he pardons and forgives offences, it shews a mind easily pardons and remits offences, it shews that perched above the reach of injuries. If he be his mind is planted above injuries, so that he can- thankful for small benefits, it shews he values not be shot; if he be thankful for small benefits, men's minds before their treasure.” it shews that he weighs men's minds, and not their trash."

a

66

a

[ocr errors]

MEDITATIONES SACRÆ. The first and, I believe, the only edition of this tract which was published in Latin by Lord Bacon, appeared in 1597. During his life, and since his death, it has been frequently reprinted. If the reader will compare the Meditation upon Atheism, in page 70. with the Essay on Atheism, page 24 and his observation upon Atheism, in page 164, he will see that these Meditations are but the seeds

1 See end of Essays.
? There is a manuscript of this Essay in the Lansdown Collection, B. Museum, 135, 136. In Blackburn's edition of Bacon's
Works, published in 1640, he says, “I have inserted from the Remains, an Essay of a King: and my reason is, it is so col-
Jated and corrected by Archbishop Sancroft's well known hand, that it appears to be a new work; and though it consists
of short propositions mostly, yet I will be so presumptuous as to say, that I think it now breathes the true spirit of our
Author; and there seems to be an obvious reason why it was omitted before."

3 There is a MS. of this in the Harleiam MS. Vol. ii. p. 196.
* Essays, Italice, 8vo. B. Museum and Oxford.
$ Essays Moraux, par Gorges. B. Museum and Oxford.

Saggi Morali, opera nuova de F. Bacon corretta a data en luce dal. Sig. Andr: Croli et un tributo, 21mo. B. Museum, * Essais trad. en Francois par Bandouin, 16mo. Paris. B. Museum.

66

a

of his opinions upon this important subject. The sentiments and the very words are similar. In the Meditation, he says, “This I dare affirm in knowledge of nature, that a little natural philosophy, and the first entrance into it, doth dispose the opinion to atheism; but on the other side, much natural philosophy and wading deep into it will bring about men's minds to religion; wherefore atheism every way seems to be joined and combined with folly and ignorance, seeing nothing can be more justly allotted to be the saying of fools, than this, .There is no God.'”

In the Advancement of Learning, he says, “It is an assured truth, and a conclusion of experience, that a little or superficial knowledge of philosophy may incline the mind of man to atheism, but a further proceeding therein doth bring the mind back again to religion; for in the entrance of philosophy, when the second causes, which are next unto the senses, do offer themselves to the mind of man, if it dwell and stay there, it may induce some oblivion of the highest cause; but when a man passeth on farther, and seeth the dependence of causes, and the works of Providence, then, according to the allegory of the poets, he will easily believe that the highest link of nature's chain must needs be tied to the foot of Jupiter's chair.”

a

[ocr errors][merged small]

This tract was published by Lord Bacon in 1597,4 and has been repeatedly published by different editors. It was incorporated in the treatise on rhetoric, in the Advancement of Learning, and more extensively in the treatise De Augmentis.” The dedication, of which there is a MS.3 in the British Museum, to the Lord Mountjoye, is copied from The Remains,” published by Stephens.*

[ocr errors]

PRAISE OF KNOWLEDGE. This tract “In Praise of Knowledge,” of which there is a MSS. in the British Museum,5 is a rudiment both of the Advancement of Learning," and of the Novum Organum.” This will appear from the following extracts :

PRAISE OF KNOWLEDGE, PAGE 79 OF THIS VOL. “ The truth of being, and the truth of knowing, is all one: and the pleasures of the affections greater than the pleasur

sures of the senses. And are not the pleasures of the intellect greater than the pleasures of the affections? Is it not a true and only natural pleasure, whereof there is no satiety? Is it not knowledge that doth alone clear the mind of all perturbations?"

ADVANCEMENT OF LEARNING, PAGE 183 OF THIS VOL. “ The pleasure and delight of knowledge and learning far surpasseth all other in nature; for, shall the pleasures of the affections so exceed the senses, as much as the obtaining of desire or victory exceedeth a song or a dinner; and must not, of consequence, the pleasures of the intellect or understanding exceed the pleasures of the affections ? We see in all other pleasures there is a satiety, and after they be used, their verdure departeth; which sheweth well they be but deceits of pleasure, and not pleasures; and that it was the novelty which pleased, and not the quality: and therefore we see that voluptuous men turn friars, and ambitious princes turn melancholy. But of knowledge there is no satiety, but satisfaction and appetite are perpetually interchangeable.”

PRAISE OF KNOWLEDGE, PAGE 80 OF THIS VOL. “ Printing, a gross invention; artillery, a thing that lay not far out of the way; the needle, a thing partly known before: what a change have these three things made in the world in these times; the one in state of learning, the other in state of the war, the third in the state of treasure, commodities, and navigation ?"

NOVUM ORGANUM, PART I. APH. 129. “ Rursus, vim et virtutem et consequentias Rerum inventarum notare juvat: quæ non in aliis manifestius occurrunt, quam in illis tribus, quæ Antiquis incognitæ, et quarum primordia, licet recentia, obscura et ingloria sunt: Artis nimirum Imprimendi, Pulveris Tormentarii, et Acus Nau

: "Of the Coulours of good and evill a fragment. 1597.” At the end, and after the word“Finis,” in this old edition is, “Printed at London by John Windet for Humfrey Hooper. 1597."

> See page 217.
- Harleian 6797, and there is a page or two of the work itself.
• But I do not find it prefixed to the work.
· Harleian MSS. 6797.

ticæ. Hæc enim tria, rerum faciem et statum in Orbe terrarum mutaverunt: primum, in Re Literaria; secundum, in Re Bellica : tertium, in Navigationibus : Unde innumeræ rerum mutationes sequutæ sunt, ut non imperium aliquod, non Secta, non Stella majorem efficaciam et quasi influxum super res humanas exercuisse videatur, quam ista Mechanica exercuerunt."1.

§ 5.

VALERIUS TERMINUS. This too is clearly a rudiment of the Advancement of Learning," as may be perceived almost in every page: for instance, by comparing, of this volume, Page

161.

172, 174. Page

173. It is also a rudiment of the - Novum Organum.” In page 89 of this volume, he says, “Let the effect to be produced be whiteness; let the first direction be, that if air and water be intermingled, or broken in small portions together, whiteness will ensue, as in snow, in the breaking of the waves of the sea, and rivers, and the like."

In the Novum Organum," under the head of travelling instances, he says, “ To give an example of a travelling instance; suppose the nature inquired after were whiteness, an instance advancing to generation is glass, whole, and in powder; and again, simple water, and water beat into froth ; for whole glass, and simple water, are transparent bodies, not white; but powdered glass, and the froth of water, are white, not transparent.”

Page

82 with page 85 with pages 85 with page

[ocr errors]

FILUM LABYRINTHI. The tract entitled Filum Labyrinthi,"s of which there is a MSS. in the British Museum,“ seems to have been the rudiment of the tract in Latin in Gruter's collection, entitled “Cogitata et Visa,"5 the three first sections containing the same sentiments in almost the same words.

That it is a rudiment of the Advancement of Learning" is manifest, as will appear by comparing the beautiful passage in page 165 with the following sentence in page 97 of this volume, “ He thought also, that knowledge is almost generally sought either for delight and satisfaction, or for gain or profession, or for credit and ornament, and that every of these are as Atalanta's balls, which hinder the race of invention.”

It is also a rudiment of the Novum Organum. Speaking of universities, he says, in page 98 of this volume, “ In universities and colleges men's studies are almost confined to certain authors, from which if any dissenteth or propoundeth matter of redargution, it is enough to make him thought a person turbulent; whereas if it be well advised, there is a great difference to be made between matters contemplative and active. For in government change is suspected, though the better; but it is natural to arts to be in perpetual agitation and growth. Neither is the danger alike of new light, and of new motion or remove."

In the Novum Organum he says, (Aph. 90,) “Again in the customs and institutions of schools, universities, colleges, and the like conventions, destined for the seats of learned men, and the promotion of knowledge, all things are found opposite to the advancement of the sciences ; for the readings and exercises

are here so managed, that it cannot easily come into any one's mind to think of things out of the common road. Or if here and there one should use a liberty of judging, he can only impose the task upon himself, without obtaining assistance from his fellows; and if he could dispense with this, he will still find his industry and resolution a great hindrance to the raising of his fortune. For the studies of men in such places are confined, and pinned down to the writings of certain authors; from which, if any man happens to differ, he is presently reprehended as a disturber and innovator. But there is surely a great difference between arts and civil affairs; for the danger is not the same from new light, as from new commotions. In civil affairs, it is true, a change even for the better is suspected, through fear of disturbance; because these affairs depend upon authority, consent, reputation, and opinion, and not upon demonstrations : but arts and sciences

Ii Shaw's translation :

“Again, it may not be improper to observe the power, the efficacy, and the consequences of inventions, which appear no where plainer, than in those three particulars, unknown to the ancients, and whose origins, though modern, are obscure and inglorious, viz. the art of printing, gunpowder, and the compass, which have altered the state of the world, and given it a new face; 1. With regard to learning; 2. With regard to war; and, 3. With regard to navigation. Whence numberless vicissitudes of things have ensued, insomuch that no empire, no sect, no celestial body, could seem to have a greater ethcacy, and, as it were, influence over human affairs than these three mechanical inventions have had.”

- I have ventured in this preface to substitute "waves" for ways.
1 “Scala Intellectus, sive Filum Labyrinthi,” is the title of the fourth part of the “Instauratio."
• Catalogue Harleian, vol. iii, page 397. Art. 6797.
" These will be explained hereafter.

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »