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BARON VERULAM, VISCOUNT ST. ALBANS, AND LORD HIGII
PRINTED BY J. CUNDEE, IVY-LANE,
FOR M. JONES, PATERNOSTER-ROW.
PART II.-SECTION II.
THE DOCTRINE OF INSTANCES; OR, THE METHOD OF EXPEDITING THE INTERPRETATION OF NATURE, AND THE INVESTIGATION OF FORMS, RY PREROGATIVE INSTANCES*.
HAVING thus laid down the tables, that afford the first view of a subjectt, and given an
* The doctrine of instances is delivered with great diligence, sagacity, and exactness, in the present section. The design is to shew what are the principal, most material, and essential particulars in every enquiry; or what instances are chiefly to be sought after and regarded, in order to discover the real natures of things, with the greatest certainty and ́expedition. It is a doctrine of the first importance in the discovery of forms, and for want thereof the philosophical enquiries we generally meet with are but light skirmishes, instead of close grapplings with nature; or, without a metaphor, they have no strong and direct tendency to the discovery of forms, but appear vague, indetermined, and rather amusing than useful,
+ That is, in the way of example, and not in the way of a rigid and just enquiry, which requires much more industry
example of the method of rejection or exclusion, and a specimen of the fruits, or first dawn of doctrine to be derived from them, we proceed to the other helps of the understanding, in the business of interpreting nature, or forming a true. and perfect induction. And, in proposing these helps, we shall, wherever tables are required, proceed upon the foregoing subject of heat* *; but where fewer examples are sufficient, we will occasionally launch into subjects of all kinds, without confounding our enquiry of heat, on the one hand, or confining our doctrine to too scanty bounds, on the other†.
We therefore propose to treat, 1. of prerogative instances; 2. of the helps of induction; 3. of the rectification of induction; 4. of the method of varying enquiries, according to the. nature of the subject; 5. of prerogative natures for enquiry, or what subjects are to be enquired into first, what second; 6. of the limits of enquiry, or an inventory of all the natures in the
and exactness, after the manner of the Author's enquiry into the subjects of Life and Death, Winds, Condensation, and Rarifaction; though these also are but a kind of larger examples, and not finished enquiries.
* The tables, for that purpose, being laid down in the preceding section.
And, in this view, the following Aphorisms will exhibit a little map of the roads for improving all kinds of knowledge.