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note, that in our times it lieth much waste and that therein there is a deficience. This deficience with respect to Elizabeth he was anxious to supply by the publication of his sentiments, "in Felicem Memoriam Elizabethæ :" but this publication seems to have required some caution, and to have been attended with some difficulty. In 1605, Bacon thus spoke: "But for a tablet, or picture of smaller volume, (not presuming to speak of your majesty that liveth,) in my judgment the most excellent is that of Queen Elizabeth, your immediate predecessor in this part of Britain; a princess that, if Plutarch were now alive to write lives by parallels, would trouble him, I think, to find for her a parallel amongst women. This lady was indued with learning in her sex singular, and rare even amongst masculine princes; whether we speak of learning, language, or of science, modern, or ancient, divinity or humanity: and unto the very last year of her life she was accustomed to appoint set hours for reading; scarcely any young student in any university more daily, or more duly. As for her government, I assure myself, I shall not exceed, if I do affirm that this part of the island never had forty-five years of better times; and yet not through the calmness of the season, but through the wisdom of her regimen. For if there be considered of the one side, the truth of religion established, the constant peace and security, the good administration of justice, the temperate use of the prerogative, not slackened, nor much strained, the flourishing state of learning, sortable to so excellent a patroness, the convenient estate of wealth and means, both of crown and subject, the habit of obedience, and the moderation of discontents; and there be considered, on the other side, the differences of religion, the troubles of neighbour countries, the ambition of Spain, and opposition of Rome: and then, that she was solitary and of herself: these things, I say, considered, as I could not have chosen an instance so recent and so proper, so, I suppose, I could not have chosen one more remarkable or eminent to the purpose now in hand, which is concerning the conjunction of learning in the prince with felicity in the people." So he wrote in the year 1605; but, about the year 1612, "The king," says Wilson, "cast his thoughts towards Peterborough, where his mother lay, whom he caused to be translated to a magnificent tomb, at Westminster. And (somewhat suitable to her mind when she was living) she had a translucent passage in the night, through the city of London, by multitudes of torches: the tapers placed by the tomb and the altar, in the cathedral, smoking with them like an offertory, with all the ceremonies, and voices their quires and copes could express, attended by many prelates and nobles, who paid this last tribute to her memory.”1 Before this time Bacon had written his essay "in Felicem Memoriam Elizabethæ." which he sent to Sir George Carew, whose death M. De Thou laments, in a letter to Mr. Camden, Being asked a question by in the year 1613. The following is the letter to Sir George Carew.2
this bearer, an old servant of my brother Anthony Bacon's, whether I would command him any thing into France; and being at better leisure than I would, in regard of sickness, I began to remember that neither your business nor mine, though great and continual, can be, upon an exact account, any just occasion why so much good-will as hath passed between us should be so much discontinued as it hath been. And therefore, because one must begin, I thought to provoke your remembrance of me by a letter: and thinking to fill it with somewhat besides salutations, it came to my mind, that this last summer vacation, by occasion of a factious book that endeavoured to verify Misera Fœmina, the addition of the pope's bull, upon Queen Elizabeth, I did write a few lines in her memorial, which I thought you would be pleased to read, both for the argument, and because you were wont to bear affection to my pen. 'Verum, ut aliud ex alio,' if it came handsomely to pass, I would be glad the president De Thou, who hath written a history, as you know, of that fame and diligence, saw it; chiefly because I know not whether it may not serve him for some use in his story; wherein I would be glad he did write to the truth, and to the memory of that lady, as I perceive by that he hath already written he is well inclined to do. I would be glad also, it were some occasion, such as absence may permit, of some acquaintance or mutual notice between us. For though he hath many ways the precedence, chiefly in worth, yet this is common to us both, that we serve our sovereigns in places of law eminent: and not ourselves only, but that our fathers did so before us. And lastly, that both of us love learning and liberal sciences, which was ever a bond of friendship in the greatest distance of places. But of this I make no farther request, than your own occasions and respects, to me known, may further or limit; my principal purpose being to salute you, and to send you this token: whereunto I will add my very kind commendations to my lady; and so commit you both to God's holy protection.”
It seems probable that this tract was intended for publication during the life of the king. It says,
"Sir George Carew, of Cornwall, was Master in Chancery in the time of Queen Elizabeth; and in 1597 sent ambassador into Poland; and in 1606 went to the court of France with the like character. After about three years continuance, he was recalled by the king to make use of his services at home: but he survived not many years. M. De Thou, in a letter to Mr. Camden in 1613, very much laments his death; as losing a friend he much valued, and an assistant in the prosecution of his history: having received helps from him in that part which relates to the dissensions between the Poles and the Swedes ir the year 1598, as appears before the contents of book cxxi."-Stephens.
"Restant felicitates posthumæ duæ, iis quæ vivam comitabantur fere celsiores et augustiores: una successoris, altera memoriæ. Nam successorem sortita est eum, qui licet et mascula virtute et prole, et nova imperii accessione fastigium ejus excedat et obumbret; tamen et nomini et honoribus ejus faveat, et actis ejus quandam perpetuitatem donet: cum nec ex personarum delectu, nec ex institutorum ordine, quicquam magnopere mutaverit: adeo ut raro filius parenti, tanto silentio, atquæ tam exigua mutatione et perturbatione successerit." But it was not published during the life of the author; and the praise of Elizabeth, in the Advancement of Learning, is wholly omitted, and certainly not for its want of beauty, in the treatise "De Augmentis," published in 1623, where he also omits the passage already cited in this preface. "Then the reign of a queen matched with a foreigner: then of a queen that lived solitary and unmarried, and yet her government so masculine that it had greater impression and operation upon the states abroad than it any ways received from thence;" merely saying, 'Rursus regnum fœminæ solitariæ et cœlibis." Whatever were the motives by which he was induced to suppress, for a time, the just praise of Elizabeth, he ordered the publication in a will, which he afterwards cancelled, but, in all probability, after some understanding with Dr. Rawley, that the publication should appear, as it did, soon after his death. This appears from Rawley's account.1 "I thought it fitting to intimate, that the discourse, within contained, entitled, A Collection of the Felicities of Queen Elizabeth; was written by his lordship in Latin only, whereof, though his lordship had his particular ends then; yet in regard that I held it a duty, that her own nation, over which she so happily reigned for many years, should be acquainted and possessed with the virtues of that excellent queen, as well as foreign nations, I was induced, many years ago, to put the same into the English tongue; not ad verbum,' for that had been but flat and injudicious; but, (as far as my slender ability could reach,) according to the expressions which I conceived his lordship would have rendered it in, if he had written the same in English: yet ever acknowledging that Zeuxis, or Apelles' pencil could not be attained, but by Zeuxis, or Apelles himself. This work, in the Latin, his lordship so much affected, that he had ordained, by his last will and testament, to have had it published many years since: but that singular person intrusted therewith, soon after deceased. And therefore it must now expect a time to come forth amongst his lordship's other Latin works." And Archbishop Tenison says, "the third is, a memorial, entitled The Felicities of Queen Elizabeth. This was written by his lordship in Latin only. A person of more good will than ability, translated it into English, and called it in the singular, Her Felicity. But we have also a version, much more accurate and judicious, performed by Doctor Rawley, who was pleased to take that labour upon him, because he understood the value his lordship put upon this work; for it was such, that I find this charge given concerning it, in his last will and testament. •In particular, I wish the eulogy which I writ, in Felicem Memoriam Elizabethæ, may be published.""
LIVES OF THE CESARS.
Of these tracts Tenison says, "The fifth is, the Imago Civilis Julii Cæsaris.' The sixth, Imago Civilis Augusti Cæsaris.' Both of them short personal characters, and not histories of their empire: and written by his lordship in that tongue, which in their time was at its height, and became the language of the world. A while since, they were translated into English, and inserted into the first part of the Resuscitation."
In the few lines upon the character of Augustus Cæsar, there is a maxim well deserving the deep consideration of every young man of sensibility, apt to be
Misled by fancy's meteor ray,
By passion driven :
And yet the light that leads astray,
Bacon says, "Those persons which are of a turbulent nature or appetite, do commonly pass their youth in many errors; and about their middle, and then and not before, they show forth their perfections; but those that are of a sedate and calm nature, may be ripe for great and glorious actions ir their youth." The very same sentiment which he expresses in his Essay on Youth and Age: "Natures that have much heat, and great and violent desires and perturbations, are not ripe for action till they have passed the meridian of their years; as it was with Julius Cæsar and Septimus Severus; of the latter of whom it is said, 'Juventutem egit, erroribus, imo furoribus plenam;' and yet he was the ablest emperor, almost, of all the list: but reposed natures may do well in youth, as it is seen in Augustus Cæsar, Cosmus Duke of Florence, Gaston de Foix, and others."
HENRY PRINCE OF WALES.
I have selected this piece of biography from the letters, and restored it to what appears to me to he its proper place. Of this a MS. may be found in the British Museum.
1 Preface to the Resuscitatio.
WISDOM OF THE ANCIENTS.
THE antiquities of the first age (except those we find in sacred writ) were buried in oblivion and silence; silence was succeeded by poetical fables: and fables again were followed by the records we now enjoy: so that the mysteries and secrets of antiquity were distinguished and separated from the records and evidences of succeeding times, by the veil of fiction, which interposed itself, and came between those things which perished and those which are extant. I suppose some are of opinion that my purpose is to write toys and trifles, and to usurp the same liberty in applying, that the poets assumed in feigning, which I might do (confess) if I listed, and with more serious contemplation intermix these things, to delight either myself in meditation, or others in reading. Neither am I ignorant how fickle and inconstant a thing fiction is, as being subject to be drawn and wrested any way, and how great the commodity of wit and discourse is, that is able to apply things well, yet so as never meant by the first authors. But I remember that this liberty hath been lately much abused, in that many, to purchase the reverence of antiquity to their own inventions and fancies, have for the same intent laboured to wrest many poetical fables; neither hath this old and common vanity been used only of late, or now and then: for even Chrysippus long ago did, as an interpreter of dreams, ascribe the opinions of the Stoics to the ancient poets: and more sottishly do the chymists appropriate the fancies and delights of poets in the transformations of bodies to the experiments of their furnace. All these things, I say, I have sufficiently considered and weighed and in them have seen and noted the general levity and indulgence of men's wits above allegories; and yet for all this, I relinquish not my opinion.
For, first, it may not be that the folly and looseness of a few should altogether detract from the respect due to the parables; for that were a conceit which might savour of profaneness and presumption: for religion itself doth sometimes delight in such veils and shadows; so that whoso exempts them, seems in a manner to interdict all commerce between things divine and human. But concerning human wisdom, I do indeed ingenuously and freely confess, that I am inclined to imagine, that under some of the ancient fictions lay couched certain mysteries and allegories, even from their first invention; and I am persuaded, whether ravished with the reverence of antiquity, or because in some fables I find such singular proportion between the similitude and the thing signified, and such apt and clear coherence in the very structure of them, and propriety of names wherewith the persons or actors in them are ascribed and intituled, that no man can constantly deny but this sense was in the author's intent and meaning, when they first invented them, and that they purposely shadowed it in this sort: for who can be so stupid and blind in the open light, as (when he hears how Fame, after the giants were destroyed, sprang up as their younger sister) not to refer it to the murmurs and seditious reports of both sides, which are wont to fly abroad for a time after the suppressing of insurrections? Or when he hears how the giant Typhon, having cut out and brought away Jupiter's nerves, which Mercury stole from him and restored again to Jupiter, doth not presently perceive how fitly it may be applied to powerful rebellions, which take from princes their sinews of money and authority: but so that by affability of speech and wise edicts (the minds of their subjects being in time privily, and as it were by stealth reconciled) they recover their strength again? Or when he hears how, in that memorable expedition of the gods against the giants, the braying of Silenus's ass conduced much to the profligation of the giants, doth not confidently imagine that it was invented to show how the greatest enterprises of rebels are oftentimes dispersed with vain rumours and fears.
Moreover, to what judgments can the conformity and signification of names seem obscure? Seeing Metis, the wife of Jupiter doth plainly signify counsel: Typhon, insurrection: Pan, universality • Nemesis, revenge: and the like. Neither let it trouble any man, if sometimes he meet with historical narrations, or additions for ornament's sake, or confusion of times, or something transferred from
one fable to another, to bring in a new allegory; for it could be no otherwise, seeing they were the inventions of men which lived in divers ages, and had also divers ends, some being ancient, others neoterical; some have an eye to things natural, others to moral.
There is another argument, and that no small one neither, to prove that these fables contain certain hidden and involved meanings, seeing some of them are observed to be so absurd and foolish in the very relation that they show, and, as it were, proclaim a parable afar off; for such tales as are probable they may seem to be invented for delight and in imitation of history. And as for such as no man would so much as imagine or relate, they seem to be sought out for other ends: for what kind of fiction is that wherein Jupiter is said to have taken Metis to wife, and perceiving that she was with child, to have devoured her, whence himself conceiving, brought forth Pallas armed out of his head? Truly, I think there was never dream, so different to the course of cogitation, and so full of monstrosity, ever hatched in the brain of man. Above all things this prevails most with me, and is of singular moment; many of these fables seem not to be invented of those by whom they are related and celebrated, as by Homer, Hesiod, and others: for if it were so, that they took beginning in that age, and from those authors by whom they are delivered and brought to our hands, my mind gives me there could be no great or high matter expected, or supposed to proceed from them in respect of these originals. But if with attention we consider the matter, it will appear that they were delivered and related as things formerly believed and received, and not as newly invented and offered unto us. Besides, seeing they are diversely related by writers that lived near about one and the selfsame time, we may easily perceive that they were common things derived from precedent memorials; and that they became various by reason of the divers ornaments bestowed on them by particular relations; and the consideration of this must needs increase in us a great opinion of them, as not to be accounted either the effects of the times, or inventions of the poets, but as sacred relics or abstracted airs of better times, which, by tradition from more ancient nations, fell into the trumpets and flutes of the Grecians. But if any do obstinately contend, that allegories are always adventitially, and as it were by constraint, never naturally and properly included in fables, we will not be much troublesome, but suffer them to enjoy that gravity of judgment which I am sure they affect, although indeed it be but lumpish and almost leaden. And, if they be worthy to be taken notice of, we will begin afresh with them in some other fashion.
There is found among men, and it goes for current, a twofold use of parables, and those, which is more to be admired, referred to contrary ends, conducing as well to the folding up and keeping of things under a veil, as to the enlightening and laying open of obscurities. But, omitting the former, rather than to undergo wrangling, and assuming ancient fables as things vagrant and composed only for delight, the latter must questionless till remain as not to be wrested from us by any violence of wit, neither can any (that is but meanly learned) hinder, but it must absolutely be received as a thing grave and sober, free from all vanity, and exceeding profitable and necessary to all sciences. This is it, I say, that leads the understanding of man by an easy and gentle passage through all novel and abstruse inventions which any way differ from common received opinions. Therefore, in the first ages, (when many human inventions and conclusions, which are now common and vulgar, were new, and not generally known,) all things were full of fables, enigmas, parables, and similes of all sorts; by which they sought to teach and lay open, not to hide and conceal knowledge, especially seeing the understandings of men were in those times rude and impatient, and almost incapable of any subtilties, such things only excepted as were the objects of sense; for, as hieroglyphics preceded letters, so parables were more ancient than arguments: and in these days also, he that would illuminate men's minds anew in any old matter, and that not with disprofit and harshness, must absolutely take the same course, and use the help of similes. Wherefore after all that hath been said, we will thus conclude, the wisdom of the ancients, it was either much or happy: much, if these figures and tropes were invented by study and premeditation; happy, if they, intending nothing less, gave matter and occasion to so many worthy meditations. As concerning my labours, if there be any thing in them which may do good, I will on neither part count them ill bestowed, my purpose. being to illustrate either antiquity or things themselves. Neither am I ignorant that this very subject hath been attempted by others: but to speak as I think, and that freely, without ostentation, the dignity and efficacy of the thing, is almost lost by these men's writings, though voluminous and full of pains, whilst not diving into the depth of matters, but skilful only in certain commonplaces, have applied the sense of these parables to certain vulgar and general things, not so much as glancing at their true virtue, genuine propriety, and full depth. I, if I be not deceived, shall be new in common things; wherefore, leaving such as are plain and open, I will aim at further and richer
THE WISDOM OF THE ANCIENTS.
CASSANDRA, OR DIVINATION.
THE poets fable, that Apollo being enamoured of Cassandra, was, by her many shifts and cunning sleights, still deluded in his desire; but yet fed on with hope until such time as she had drawn from him the gift of prophesying; and having by such her dissimulation, in the end attained to that which from the beginning she sought after, at last flatly rejected his suit: who, finding himself so far engaged in his promise, as that he could not by any means revoke again his rash gift, and yet inflamed with an earnest desire of revenge, highly disdaining to be made the scorn of a crafty wench, annexed a penalty to his promise, to wit, that she should ever foretell the truth, but never be believed; so were her divinations always faithful, but at no time regarded, whereof she still found the experience, yea, even in the ruin of her own country, which she had often forewarned them of, but they neither gave credit nor ear to her words.
This fable seems to intimate the unprofitable liberty of untimely admonitions and counsels: for they that are so overweened with the sharpness and dexterity of their own wit and capacity, as that they disdain to submit themselves to the documents of Apollo, the god of harmony, whereby to learn and observe the method and measure of affairs, the grace and gravity of discourse, the differences between the more judicious and more vulgar ears, and the due times when to speak and when to be silent; be they never so sensible and pregnant, and their judgments never so profound and profitable, yet in all their endeavours either of persuasion or perforce, they avail nothing; neither are they of any moment to advantage or manage matters, but do rather hasten on the ruin of all those that they adhere or devote themselves unto; and then, at last, when calamity hath made men feel the event of neglect, then shall they, too late, be reverenced as deep foreseeing and faithful prophets: whereof a notable instance is eminently set forth in Marcus Cato Uticensis, who, as from a watch-tower, discovered afar off, and as an oracle long foretold, the approaching ruin of his country, and the plotted tyranny hovering over the state, both in the first conspiracy, and as it was prosecuted in the civil contention between Cæsar and Pompey, and did no good the while, but rather harmed the commonwealth and hastened on his country's bane; which M. Cicero wisely observed, and writing to a familiar friend, doth in these terms excellently
describe, "Cato optime sentit, sed nocet interdum Reipublicæ loquitur enim tanquam in Republicâ Platonis, non tanquam in fæce Romuli." Cato (saith he) judgeth profoundly, but in the mean time damnifies the state, for he speaks as in the commonwealth of Plato, and not as in the dregs of Romulus.
TYPHON, OR A REBEL.
JUNO, being vexed (say the poets) that Jupiter had begotten Pallas by himself without her, ear nestly pressed all the other gods and goddesses,that she might also bring forth of herself alone without him; and having by violence and importunity obtained a grant thereof, she smote the earth, and forthwith sprang up Typhon, a huge and horrid monster. This strange birth she commits to a serpent, as a foster-father, to nourish it; who no sooner came to ripeness of years but he provokes Jupiter to battle. In the conflict, the giant, getting the upper hand, takes Jupiter upon his shoulders, carries him into a remote and obscure country, and (cutting out the sinews of his hands and feet) brought them away, and so left him miserably mangled and maimed; but Mercury recovering these nerves from Typhon by stealth, restored them again to Jupiter. Jupiter being again by this means corroborated, assaults the monster afresh, and at the first strikes him with a thunderbolt, from whose blood serpents were engendered. This monster at length fainting and flying, Jupiter casts on him the mount Etna, and with the weight thereof crushed him.
This fable seems to point at the variable fortune of princes, and the rebellious insurrection of traitors in state. For princes may well be said to be married to their dominions, as Jupiter was to Juno; but it happens now and then, that being deboshed by the long custom of empiring and bending towards tyranny, they endeavour to draw all to themselves, and, contemning the counsel of their nobles and senators, hatch laws in their own brain, that is, dispose of things by their own fancy and absolute power. The people, repining at this, study how to create and set up a chief of their own choice. This project, by the secret instigation of the peers and nobles, doth for the most part take his beginning; by whose con nivance the commons being set on edge, there follows a kind of murmuring or discontent in the state, shadowed by the infancy of Typhon, which