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to give, though he believes them to be very useful and sound, and likely to prove a great help, are not offered either as perfect in themselves or as so indispensable that nothing can be done without them. Three things only he represents as indispensable: 1st, ut justam naturæ et experientiæ historiam præsto haberent homines atque in eâ sedulo versarentur;” 2nd, “ut receptas opiniones et notiones deponerent;" 3rd, “ut mentem a generalissimis et proximis ab illis ad tempus cohiberent." These three conditions being secured, the art of interpretation (being indeed the true and natural operation of the mind when freed from impediments) might, he thinks, suggest itself without a teacher: “ fore ut etiam vi propriâ et genuinâ mentis, absque aliâ arte, in formam nostram interpretandi incidere possent; est enim interpretatio verum et naturale opus mentis, demptis iis quæ obstant: "an admission which helps to account for the fact that during the five years which he afterwards devoted to the developement of his philosophy, he applied himself almost exclusively to the natural history ; leaving the exposition of his method of interpretation still incomplete. For it cannot be denied that, among the many things which remained to be done, the setting forward of the Natural History was, according to this view, the one which stood next in order of importance. In furtherance of the two other principal requisites, he had already done what he could. Every motive by which men could be encouraged to lay prejudices aside, and refrain from premature generalisations, and apply themselves to the sincere study of Nature, had already been laid before them. It remained to be seen whether his exhortations would bring other labourers into the field; but in the mean time the question lay between the completion of the Novum Organum, which was not indispensable, and the commencement of the collection of a Natural History, which was; and when he found that other labourers did not come forward to help, he naturally applied himself to the latter.]
I THOUGHT it better not to interrupt the reader with notes during the progress of the foregoing argument, but as some points are assumed in it upon which I shall have to express a different opinion hereafter, it may be well to notice them here; the rather because I fully concur in the conclusion notwithstanding.
1. It is assumed that the first book of Valerius Terminus was designed to comprehend a general survey of knowledge, such as forms the subject of the second book of the Advancement of Learning and of the last eight books of the De Augmentis Scientiarum, as well as the general reflexions and precepts, which form the subject of the first book of the Novum Organum ; — to comprehend in short the whole first part of the Instauratio, together with the introductory portion of the second.
This is inferred from the description of the “ Inventary” which was to be contained in the tenth chapter of Valerius Terminus, as compared with the contents of the second book of the Advancement of Learning.
Now my impression is that this Inventary would have corresponded, not to the second book of the Advancement, but only to a certain Inventarium opum humanarum which is there, and also in the De Augmentis (iii. 5), set down as a desideratum ; and which was to be, not a general survey of all the departments of knowledge, but merely an appendix to one particular department; that, namely, which is called in the Advancement Naturalis Magia, sive Physica operativa major; 1 and in the Catalogus De
1 See margin. It is to be observed that in Montagu's edition of the Advancement the titles in the margin are by some strange negligence omitted; so that the correspondence between the two Inventaries was the more easily overlooked.
sideratorum at the end of the De Augmentis, Magia Naturalis, sive Deductio formarum ad opera.
The grounds of this conclusion will be explained fully in their proper place. 1 It is enough at present to mark the point as disputable ; and to observe that if this argument fails, there seems to be no reason for thinking that anything corresponding to the first part of the Instauratio entered into the design of Valerius Terminus ; also that the principal ground here alleged for concluding that Valerius Terminus was written some time before the Advancement - a conclusion which involves one considerable difficulty — is taken away.
2. It is assumed also that Valerius Terminus was not to contain anything corresponding to the last four parts of the Instauratio, but was to be merely “a statement of Bacon's method, without professing to give either the collection of facts to which the method was to be applied, or the results thereby obtained.”
This appears to be interred chiefly from the title — viz. “ Of the Interpretation of Nature.”
Now it seems to me that this argument proves too much. For I find the same title given to another unfinished work — the Temporis Partus Masculus — of which we happen to know that it was meant to be in three books; the first to be entitled Perpolitio et applicatio mentis ; the second, Lumen Natura, seu formula Interpretationis ; the third, Natura illuminata, sive Veritas Rerum. The first would have corresponded therefore to the first book of the Novum Organum ; the second, being a statement of the new method, to the second and remaining books; the third, being a statement of the application of the new method, to the sixth and last part of the Instauratio. It would seem from this that when Bacon designed the Temporis Partus Masculus, he had conceived the idea of a work embracing the entire field of the Instauratio, (the first part only excepted), though less fully developed and differently distributed. And I see no sufficient reason for supposing that the design of the Valerius Terminus was less extensive.
3. “ The Temporis Partus Masculus published by Gruter” is spoken of as probably or possibly “the same as the Temporis Partus Marimus mentioned by Bacon in his letter to Fulgenzio," and if so, the earliest of all his writings.
1 See my note at the end of Mr. Ellis's preface to Valerius Terminus.
Now the writing or rather collection of writings here alluded to is that published not by Gruter but by M. Bouillet; in whose edition of the “Euvres Philosophiques” the title Temporis Partus Masculus is prefixed to four distinct pieces. 1. A short prayer. 2. A fragment headed Aphorismi et Consilia de auxiliis mentis et accensione luminis naturalis. 3. A short piece entitled De Interpretatione Naturre sententiæ duodecim. 4. A fragment in two chapters headed Tradendi modus legitimus. It is true that from the manner in which M. Bouillet has printed them, any one would suppose that he had Gruter's authority for collecting them all under the same general title. But it is not so. In Gruter's Scripta philosophica the title Temporis Partus Masculus appears in connexion with the first, and the first only. The last has indeed an undoubted claim to it upon other and better authority. But I can find no authority whatever for giving it to the other two. If therefore the resemblance of the names be thought a sufficient reason for identifying the Partus Masculus with the Partus Maximus, that identity must be understood as belonging to the first and fourth only. The grounds of that opinion and of my own dissent from it will be discussed in the proper place. With regard to the argument now in hand, (viz. whether Bacon, when he wrote the Temporis Partus Masculus, had yet thought of producing a great work like the Instauratio) —- it is enough perhaps to observe that at whatever period or periods of his life these four pieces were composed, they all belong to the second part of the Instauratio; not as prefaces or prospectuses, but as portions of the work itself; and that if none of them contain any allusion to the other parts, the same may be said of the first book of the Novum Organum itself; and therefore that we cannot be warranted in concluding from that fact that the plan of the Instauratio had not yet been conceived.
4. It is assumed that the work which Bacon contemplated when he wrote the De Interpretatione Nature Proæmium would not have contained the new method and its results (these being, according to his then intention, to be communicated only to chosen followers), but merely the general views of science which form the subject of the first book of the Novum Organum.
This seems to be gathered from what he says in the Proæmium concerning the manner in which the several parts of the work were to be published : “ Publicandi autem ista ratio ea est, ut quæ