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a suitor in chancery, being displeased with a re-, the care of great : and, upon the promotion of any port made by Sir John Tindal, one of the masters judge, he availed himself of the opportunity to of the court, shot him dead as he was alighting explain the nature of judicial virtues, of which an from his carriage, and, upon his committal to extensive outline may be seen in his works. prison, he destroyed himself. An account of this - The judge is a man of ability, drawing his murder was published under the superintendence learning out of his books, and not out of his brain; of Sir Francis, to counteract the erroneous opinions rather learned than ingenious; more plausible which had been circulated through the country, than witty; more reverend than plausible. He is and the false commiseration which the misery a man of gravity; of a retired nature, and unconof this wretched offender had excited, in times nected with politics : his virtues are inlaid, not when the community was alive to hear any slan- embossed.--He is more advised than confident. der against the administration of justice. -He has a right understanding of justice, depend
When the morbid feeling of insane minds is ing not so much on reading other men's writings, as awakened, there is always some chance of a re- upon the goodness of his own natural reason and petition of its outrages. Towards the end of the meditation.—He is of sound judgment; not diyear the lord keeper was in danger of sharing the verted from the truth by the strength of immedifate of Sir John Tindal, from the vindictive ate impression. He is a man of integrity :-of temper of Lord Clifton, against whom a decree well regulated passions; beyond the influence had been made, who declared publicly that “he either of anger, by which he may be incapable of was sorry he had not stabbed the lord keeper in judging, or of hope, either of money or of worldly his chair the moment he pronounced judgment.” advancement, by which he may decide unjustly; As soon as this misguided suitor, who afterwards or of fear, either of the censure of others, which destroyed himself, was com uitted to the tower, is cowardice, or of giving pain when it ought to be Bacon wrote to Buckingnam, saying, “I pray given, which is improper compassion. He is your lordship in humbleness to let his majesty just both in private and in public.—He without know that I little fear the Lord Clifton, but I solicitation accepts the office, with a sense of much fear the example, that it will animate ruf- public duty.--He is patient in hearing, in inquiry, fians and rodomonti extremely against the seats and in insult; quick in apprehension, slow in of justice, which are his majesty's own seats, anger.-His determination to censure is always yea, and against all authority and greatness, if painful to him, like Cæsar, when he threatened this pass without public censure and example, it Metellus with instant death, · Adolescens, durius having gone already so far as that the person of est mihi hoc dicere quam facere.'—He does not a baron hath been committed to the Tower. The affect the reputation of despatch, nor forget that punishment it may please his majesty to remit, an over-speaking judge is no well-tuned cymbal. and I shall, not formally but heartily, intercede for –He is diligent in discovering the merits of the him, but an example, setting myself aside, I wish cause: by his own exertions; from the witness, for terror of persons that may be more dangerous and the advocates. He is cautious in his judgthan he, towards the first judge of the kingdom.” ment; not forming a hasty opinion: not tena
Not content with discharging the common cious in retaining an opinion when formed : duties of a judge, he laboured, whenever an op- never ashamed of being wiser to-day than he portunity offered, to improve the administration was yesterday:' never wandering from the subof justice.
stance of the matter in judgment into useless He carried into effect the proposal, which, subtilty and refinement. — He does not delay when attorney-general, he had submitted to the justice.--He is impartial ; never suffering any king, that two legal reporters, with an annual passion to interfere with the love of truth.-He stipend to each of £100, should be appointed. hears what is spoken, not who speaks: whether He realized the intention, which he expressed it be the sovereign, or a pauper; a friend, or a foe; upon taking his seat, by issuing ordinances for a favourite advocate, or an intelligent judge.—He the better administration of justice in the chan- decides according to law; jus dicere : cery, upon which the practice of the court at this jus dare,' is his maxim.-He delivers his judgday is founded. Before the circuits he assembled ment in public, “palam atque astante corona.' the judges, and explained his views of their “ He discharges his duty to all persons.-To duties, when they, as the planets of the kingdom, the suitors, by doing justice, and by endeavouring were representing their sovereign, in the adminis- to satisfy them that justice is done :-to the wittration of law and justice;—to advance kind feel- nesses, by patience, kindness, and by encourageing and familiar intercourse, he introduced a mode, ment;-to the jurors, by being a light to lead at that time not usual, of inviting the judges to them to justice :-to the advocates, by hearing dinner; thus manifesting, as he says in a letter to them patiently; correcting their defects, not sufLord Burleigh, that it is ever a part of wisdom fering justice to be perverted by their ingenuity, not to exclude inferior matters of access amongst and encouraging their merits :-to the inferior
officers, by rewarding the virtuous; skilful in pre- Such was the gorgeous splendour, such the cedents, wary in proceeding, and understanding union of action and contemplation in which he in the business of the court; and discountenanc- lived. ing the vicious, sowers of suits, disturbers of About this period the king conferred upon him jurisdiction, impeders, by tricks and shifts, of the the valuable farm of the Alienation Office, and he plain and direct course of justice, and bringing it succeeded in obtaining for his residence, York into oblique lines and labyrinths: and the poller House, the place of his birth, and where his and exacter of fees, who justifies the common father had lived, when lord keeper in the reign resemblance of the courts to the bush, whereunto, of Elizabeth. while the sheep flies for defence in weather, he This may be considered the summit of this is sure to lose part of his fleece :-to himself, by great man's worldly prosperity. He had been counteracting the tendency of his situation to successively solicitor and attorney-general, privy warp his character, and by proper use of times of councillor, lord keeper, and lord chancellor, havrecreation:—to his profession, by preserving the ing had conferred upon him the dignities, first of privileges of his office, and by improvement of knight, then of Baron of Verulam, and, early in the law :-and to society, by advancing justice the next year, of Viscount St. Albans; but, above and good feeling, in the suppression of force and all, he was distinguished through Europe by a detection of fraud; in readiness to hear the com- much prouder title, as the greatest of English plaints of the distressed; in looking with pity philosophers. upon those who have erred and strayed; in cour- At York House, on the 22d of January, 1620, tesy; in discountenancing contentious suits ; in he celebrated his sixtieth birthday, surrounded by attending to appearances, esse et videri; in en- his admirers and friends, amongst whom was Ben couraging respect for the office; and by resigning Jonson, who composed, in honour of the day, a in due time."
poem founded on the fiction of the poet's surprise In his youth he had exerted himself to improve upon his reaching York House, at the sight of the the gardens of Gray's Inn: in gardens he always genius of the place performing some mystery. delighted, thinking them conducive to the purest Fortune is justly represented insecurely placed of human pleasures, and he now, as chancellor, upon a wheel, whose slightest revolution may had the satisfaction to sign the patent for convert- cause her downfall. It has been said that wailing ing Lincoln's Inn Fields into walks, extending sounds were heard, before the destruction of the almost to the wall where his faithful friend Ben Temple of Jerusalem, and at last the rushing of Jonson had, when a boy, worked as a brick- mighty wings when the angel of the sanctuary layer.
departed. Had the poet been a prophet, he would For relaxation from his arduous occupations he have described the good genius of the mansion, was accustomed to retire to his magnificent and not exulting, but dejected, humbled, and about to beautiful residence at Gorhambury, the dwelling- depart forever. place of his ancestors, where, “ when his lordship arrived, St. Albans seemed as if the court had been there, so nobly did he live. His servants had liveries with his crest: his watermen were more employed than even the king's."
CHAPTER III. About half a mile from this noble mansion, of which the ruins yet remain, and within the bounds FROM THE PUBLICATION OF THE NOVUM ORGANUM of Old Verulam, the lord chancellor built, at the expense of about £10,000, a most ingeniously
October, 1620, to June, 1621. contrived house, where, in the society of his philosophical friends, he escaped from the splendour GLITTERING in the blaze of worldly splendour, of chancellor, to study and meditation. Here," and absorbed in worldly occupations, the chansays Aubrey, “ his lordship much meditated, his cellor, now sixty years of age, could no longer servant, Mr. Bushell, attending him with his pen delude himself with the hope of completing his and inkhorn, to set down his present notions. favourite work, the great object of his life, upon Mr. Thomas Hobbes told me that his lordship which he had been engaged for thirty years, and would employ him often in this service, whilst had twelve times transcribed with his own hand. he was there, and was better pleased with his He resolved at once to abandon it, and publish luinutes, or notes, set down by him, than by the small fragment which he had composed. For others who did not well understand his lordship. this act of despair he assigned two reasons :He told me that he was employed in translating “ Because I number my days, and would have it part of the Essays, viz. three of them, one whereof saved;" and “to try whether I can get help in was that of Greatness of Cities, the other two I one intended part of this work, namely, the comhave now forgot.”
piling of a Natural and Experimental History,
TO HIS RETIREMENT FROM ACTIVE LIFE.
(1. Ry repetition
1. From nature.
1. To nature.
2. To art.
2. From art. 4. Translation. 1. To a different art.
2. To a part of the same
art. 3. From experiment to experi
not be lost.
which must be the foundation of a true and active more apparent than in his more abstruse works philosophy.” Such are the consequences of vain An outline of it is subjoined. 1 attempts to unite deep contemplation and unremitting action! Such the consequences of forget
| The art of experimenting is, ting our limited powers; that we can reach only to our arm's length, and our voice be heard only till the next air is still !
13. Of the quactity. It will be remembered, that in the Advancement of Learning, he separates the subject of the human mind into
2. Judgment. si. The Understanding 3. Memory.
12. Compound. 4. Tradition.
A few moments consideration of each of these subjects will 2. The Will
PRODUCTION is experimenting upon the result of the expeUnder the head of Invention he says, “ The riment
, and is either, Ist, by Repetition, continuing the expe
riment upon the result of the experiment; as Newton, who, invention of sciences, I purpose, if God give me after having separated light into seven rays, proceeded to leave hereafter to propound, having digested it separate each distinct pencil of rays; or, 2dly, by Extension, into two parts; whereof the one I term experientia mory being helped by images and pictures of persons : may
or urging the experiment to a greater subtlety, as in the meliterata, and the other interpretatio naturæ: the it not also be helped by imaging their gestures and habits ? former being but a degree and rudiment of the or, 3dly, by Compulsion, or trying an experiment till its virtue latter. But I will not dwell too long, nor speak
is annihilated : not merely hunting the game, but killing it;
as burning or macerating a loadstone, or dissolving iron till too great upon a promise.” This promise, he, the attraction between the iron and the loadstone is gone. however, lived partly to realize.
INVERSION is trying the contrary to that which is mani. In the year 1623, he completed his tract upon bar of iron, and placing the heated end downwards, and your
fested by the experiment: as in heating the end of a small Literate Experience, in which, after having ex- hand on the top, it will presently burn the hand. Invert the plained that our inventions, instead of resulting iron, and place the hand on the ground, to ascertain whether from reason and foresight, have ever originated in heat is produced as rapidly by descent as by ascent.
VARIATION is either of the matter, as the trying to make accident; that “we are more beholden to a wild paper of woollen, as well as of linen; or of the efficient, as goat for surgery: to a nightingale for modula- by trying if amber and jet, which when rubbed, will attract tions of music: to the ibis for some part of straw, will have the same effect if warmed at the fire, or of
the quantity, like Æsop's housewife, who thought that by physic : to a pot-lid that flew open for artillery : doubling her measure of barley, her hen would daily lay her in a word, to chance rather than to logic: so that two eggs. it is no marvel that the Egyptians had their tem- translating the force of gravity upon the earth to the celestial
TRANSLATION is either from nature to nature, as Newton ples full of the idols of brutes ; but almost empty bodies ; or from nature to art, as the manner of distilling of the idols of men:” he divides this art of Dis might be taken from showers or dew, or from that homely covery into two parts: "For either the indication boiling water ; or from art to a different art, as by transferring
experiment of drops adhering to covers put upon pots of is made from experiments to experiments, or from the invention of spectacles, to help a weak sight, lo an inexperiments to axioms, which may likewise design strument fastened to the ear, to help the deaf; or to a differnew experiments ; whereof the former we will diseases, may they not retard the consumption of the spirits
ent part of the same art: as, if opiates repress the spirits in term Experientia Literata ; the latter, Interpretatio so as to prolong life ; or from experiment to experiment : Naturæ, or Novum Organum: as a man may go others, by considering whether this may not assist in find
as upon flesh putrefying sooner in some cellars than in on his way after a threefold manner, either when ing good or bad air for habitations. himself feels out his way in the dark; or, being Such are the modes of experimenting by translation,* weak-sighted, is led by the hand of another; or open to all men who will awake and perpetually fix their else when he directs his footing by a light. So ex eis, one while on the nature of things, another on the appli
cation of them, to the use and service of mankind. when a man essays all kind of experiments with- COPULATION of experiments is trying the efficacy of united out sequence or method, that is a mere palpation; experiments, which, when separate, produce the same effect : but when he proceeds by direction and order in as, by pulling off the more early buds when they are newly
knotted, or by laying the roots bare until the spring, late roses experiments, it is as if he were led by the hand; will be produced. Will not the germination be more delayed and this is it which we understand by Literate by a union of these experiments ?
CHANCES of an experiment, or the trying a conclusion, not Experience ; for the light itself, which is the third for that any reason, or other experiment, induceth you to it, way, is to be derived from the interpretation of nature, or the New Organ."
* They may be thus exhibited : He then proceeds to explain his doctrine of “ Literate Experience," or the science of making
To art. experiments. The hunting of Pan.
To a different art. In this interesting inquiry the miraculous vigi
1. From nature
To a different part of the same art. lance of this extraordinary man may possibly be 3. From experiment to experiment.
2. From art
The Novum ORGANUM is the next subject of The intended work is then separated into six consideration. It thus opens :
1. Divisions of the Sciences. FRANCISCUS
2. Novum Organum; or, Precepts for the InDE VERULAMIO
terpretation of Nature.
3. Phenomena of the Universe; or, Natural SIC COGITAVIT. 1
and Experimental History on which to
found Philosophy. His despair of the possibility of completing his
4. Scale of the Understanding. important work, of which his Novum Organum was only a portion, appears at the very entrance
5. Precursors or Anticipations of the Second
Philosophy. of the volume, which, instead of being confined to the Novum Organum, exhibits an outline, and
6. Sound Philosophy, or Active Science. only an outline, of the whole of his intended And with respect to each of these parts he exlabours.
plains his intentions. After his dedication to the king, he, accord- As to the first, or The DivisioN OF THE ing to his wonted mode, clears the way by a re- Sciences, he, in 1605, had exhibited an outline in view of the state of learning, which, he says, is the Advancement of Learning, and lived nearly to neither prosperous nor advanced, but, being barren complete it in the year 1623. In this treatise he in effects, fruitful in questions, slow and languid describes the cultivated parts of the intellectual in its improvement, exhibiting in its generality world and the deserts; not to measure out regions, the counterfeit of perfection, ill filled up in its de-as augurs for divination, but as generals to invade tails, popular in its choice, suspected by its very for conquest. promoters, and therefore countenanced with arti- Tue Novum ORGANuM is a treatise upon the fices, it is necessary that an entirely different conduct of the understanding in the systematic way from any known by our predecessors must be discovery of truth, or the art of invention by a opened to the human understanding, and differ- New Organ: as, in inquiring into any nature, the ent helps be obtained, in order that the mind hydrophobia, for instance, or the attraction of the may exercise its jurisdiction over the nature of magnet, the Novum Organum explains a mode things.
of proceeding by which its nature and laws may
with certainty be found. but only because the like was never attempted before : an ir
It having been Bacon's favourite doctrine, that rational, and, as it were, a passionate manner of experiment. ing; but yet the wonders of nature lie out of the high road important truths are often best discovered in small and beaten paths, so as the very absurdity of an attempt may and familiar instances, as the nature of a comsometimes be prosperous. Such is the nature of his tract entitled “Literate Experi- tions of society, man and wife, parents and child
monwealth, in a family and the simple conjugaence."
ren, master and servant, which are in every cotI Vol. ix. p. 145, 147. Cum autem incertus esset, quando tage; and as he had early taught that all truths, hæc alicui posthac in mentem ventura sint; eo potissimum usus argumento, quod neminem hactenus invenit, qui ad however divisible as lines and veins, are not sesimiles cogitationes animum applicuerit; decrevit prima parable as sections and separations, but partake quæque, quæ perficere licuit, in publicum edere. Neque of one common essence, which, like the drops of hæc festinatio ambitiosa fuit, sed sollicita ; ut si qnid illi hu. manitus accideret, exstaret tamen designatio quædam, ac
rain, fall separately into the river, mix themselves destinatio rei quam animo complexus est; utque exstaret at once with the stream, and strengthen the gesimul signum aliquod honestæ suæ et propensæ in generis neral current, it may seem extraordinary that it humani commoda voluntatis. Certe aliam quamcunque ambitionem inferiorem duxit re, quam præ manibus habuit. Aut should not have occurred to him that the mode to enim hoc quod agitur nihil est; aut tantum, ut merito ipso discover any truth might, possibly, be seen by contentum esse debeat, nec fructum extra quærere.
the proceedings in a court of justice, where the
immediate and dearest interests of men being conFRANCIS OF VERULAM
cerned, and great intellect exerted, it is natural to suppose that the best mode of invention would be
adopted. Uncertain, however, whether these reflections would ever hereafter suggest themselves to another, and particularly hav.
In a well constituted court of justice the judge ing observed that he has never yet met with any person dis. is without partiality. He hears the evidence on posed to apply his mind to similar meditations, he determined both sides, and the reasoning of the opposite adto publish whatsoever he had first time to conclude. Nor is this the haste of ambition, but of his anxiety, that if the common vocates. He then forms his judgment. This is lot of mankind should befall him, some sketch and determina- the mode adopted by Bacon in the Novum Ortion of the matter his mind had embraced might be extant, as well as an earnest of his will being honourably bent upon ganum for the discovery of all truths. He enpromoting the advantage of mankind. Ele assuredly looked deavours to make the philosopher in his study upon any other ambition as beneath the matter he had un proceed as a judge in his court. dertaken; for that which is here treated of is either nothing,
For this purpose his work is divisible into three or it is so great that he ought to be satisfied with its own worth and seek no other return.
parts : 1st. The removal of prejudice, or the de
struction of idols, or modes by which the judg- With respect to the defects of the senses, he
1st. From distance; which is remedied by
substitutes, as beacons, bells, telegraphs, Affirmative Table. Negative Table.
2d. By the interception of interposing bodies; The Sun's direct rays.
The Moon's rays. Blood of Terrestrial Animals. Blood of Fish.
which is remedied by attention to outward Living Animals, Dead Animals,
or visible signs, as the internal state of the
body by the pulse, &c. 3dly. By explaining the mode in which the facts
3d. By the unfitness of the body: or, presented to the senses ought by certain rules to
4th. Its insufficiency in quantity to impress the be examined.
sense, as the air and the vital spirit, which As the commander of an army, before he com
is imperceptible by sight or touch. mences an attack, considers the strength and
5th. From the insufficiency of time to actuate the number of his troops, both regular and allies; the
sense, either when the motion is too slow,
as in the hand of a clock or the growth of spirit by which they are animated, whether they are the lion, or the sheep in the lion's skin; the
grass, or too rapid, as a bullet passing power of the enemy to which he is opposed: their
through the air. walled towns, their stored arsenals and armories,
6th. From the percussion of the body being too their horses and chariots of war, elephants, ord
powerful for the sense, as in looking at the nance and artillery, and their races of men; and
midday sun; which is remedied by rethen in what mode he shall commence his attack
moving the object from the sense; or by and proceed in the battle : so, before man directs
diminishing its force by the interposition his strength against nature, and endeavours to
of a medium, as smoking tobacco through take her high towers and dismantle her fortified
water; or by reflection, as the sun's rays holds, and thus enlarge the borders of his do
in a mirror or basin of water: andminion, he ought duly to estimate,
7th. Because the sense is pre-occupied by an
other object, as by the use of perfumes. 1st. His powers, natural and artificial, for the discovery of truth.
The defects of the judgment he investigates 2d. His different motives for the exercise of in a more laborious inquiry. “There are," he
says, “ certain predispositions which beset the 3d. The obstacles to which he is opposed; mind of man; certain idols which are constantly and,
operating upon the mind and warping it from the 4th. The mode in which he can exert his truth; for the mind of man, drawn over and
powers with most efficacy, or the Art of clouded with the sable pavilion of the body, is so
far from being like smooth, equal, and clear glass,
which might sincerely take and reflect the beams Of these four requisites, therefore, a perfect of things according to their true incidence, that it is work upon the conduct of the understanding rather like an enchanted glass, full of superstiought, as it seems, to consist: but the Novum tions, apparitions, and impostures; which idols Organum is not thus treated. To system Bacon are of such a pernicious nature, that, if they was not attached: for “ As young men, when they once take root in the mind, they will so possess knit and shape perfectly, do seldom grow to a it that truth can hardly find entrance; and, even farther stature, so knowledge, while it is in should it enter, they will again rise up, choke, aphorisms and observations, it is in growth; but and destroy it.” when it once is comprehended in exact methods, These idols are of two sorts: 1st. Common to it may perchance be farther polished and illus- all men, therefore called Idols of the Tribe, intrated, and accommodated for use and practice; cluding the defects of words, called Idols of the but it increaseth no more in bulk and substance. Market; 2d. Peculiar to peculiar individuals,
Instead of explaining our different powers, our either from their original conformation, or from Senses, our Imagination, our Reason, there are in their education and pursuits in life, called Idols the Novum Organum only some scattered observa- of the Den, including the errors from particular tions upon the defects of the senses ;-upon the opinions, called Idols of the Theatre. So that different causes or idols by which the judgment his doctrine of idols may be ihus exhibited: is always liable to be warped, and some suggestions as to the artificial helps to our natural pow
1. Of the Tribe.- Of the Market
2. Of the Den.-Of the Theatre. ers in exploring the truths which are exhibited to the senses.
The Idols of the Tribe, or warps to the judgment,