Imágenes de páginas

Instruments of destruction, as of war and poison. Exhilaration of the spirits, and putting them in good

disposition. Force of the imagination, either upon another body,

or upon the body itself. Acceleration of time in maturations. Acceleration of time in clarifications. Acceleration of putrefaction. Acceleration of decoction. Acceleration of germination. Making rich composts for the earth. Impressions of the air, and raising of tempests. Great alteration ; as in induration, emollition, &c. Turning crude and watry substances into oily and

unctuous . substances. Drawing of new foods out of substances not now in


Making new threads for apparel ; and new stuffs ;

such as paper, glass, &c.
Natural divinations.
Deceptions of the senses.
Greater pleasures of the senses.
Artificial minerals and cements.







“Because you were wont to make me believe you took liking to my writings, I send you some of this Vacation's fruits; and thus much more of my mind and purpose. I hasten not to publish : perishing I would prevent; and am forced to respect as well my times as the matter. For with me it is thus, and I think with all men in my case : if I binil myself to an argument, it louleth my mind; but if I rid myself of the present cogitation, it is rather a recreatio... This hath put me into these miscellanies, which I purpose to suppress if God give me leave to write a just and perfect volume of Philosophy, Waical go on withi, though slowly." — Letter to Bishop Andrews upon sending him the' Cogitata et Visa"

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We have now collected all of Bacon's philosophical works which there is reason to believe he would himself have cared to preserve.

The rest contain but little matter of which the substance may not be found in one part or another of the preceding volumes, reduced to the shape in which he thought it would be most effective. In his eyes, those which follow belonged to the part of the race which was past and was not to be looked back upon ; for the end which he was pursuing lay still far before him, and his great anxiety was to bequeath the pursuit to a second generation,

should start fresh from the point where he was obliged to leave it.

It is not so however with us. In our eyes the interest which attaches to his labours is of a different kind. We no longer look for the discovery of any great treasure by following in that direction. His peculiar system of philosophy, — that is to say, the

peculiar method of investigation, the “organum,” the “ formula,” the “clavis," the “ars ipsa interpretandi

, naturam," the “ filum Labyrinthi,” or by whichever of its many names we choose to call that artificial process by which alone he believed that man could attain a knowledge of the laws and a command over


We re

the powers of nature, — of this philosophy we make nothing. If we have not tried it, it is because we feel confident that it would not answer. gard it as a curious piece of machinery, very subtle, elaborate, and ingenious, but not worth constructing, because all the work it could do may be done more easily another way. But though this, the favourite child of Bacon's genius which he would fain have made heir of all he had, died thus in the cradle, his genius itself still lives and works among us; whatever brings us into nearer communion with that is still interesting, and it is as a product and exponent of Bacon's own mind and character that the Baconian philosophy, properly so called, retains its chief value for modern men.

Viewed in this light, the superseded or abandoned pieces which are here gathered together under this third head are among the most interesting of the whole collection. For in them we may trace more than can be traced elsewhere of what may be called the personal history of his great philosophical scheme,

the practical enterprise in which it engaged him, and its effect on his inner and outer life. not indeed trace the Idea back to its great dawn: to the days when, in the fearless confidence of four and twenty, he wrote TEMPORIS PARTUS MAXIMUS at the head of the manuscript in which it was first set forth,

thinking no doubt in his inexperience that Truth had only to show her face in order to prevail. Our records do not go so far back as that: and before the period at which they begin a shadow had fallen across the prospect. The presumptuous maximus" has been silently withdrawn and “ masculus” put in its place.

We can


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