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migrating towards corruption in the same nature, is that of dissolving froth, or snow, for they lose their whiteness, and assume the transparency of water in its pure state without air.
Nor should we by any means omit to state, that under migrating instances we must comprehend not only those which pass towards generation and destruction, but also those which pass towards increase or decrease, for they too assist in the discovery of the form, as is clear from our definition of a form, and the table of degrees. Hence, paper, which is white when dry, is less white when moistened, (from the exclusion of air and admission of water,) and tends more to transparency. The reason is the same as in the above instances. 24. In the third rank of prerogative instances, we will class conspicuous instances, of which we spoke in our first vintage of the form of heat, and which we are also wont to call coruscations, or free and predominant instances. They are such as show the required nature in its bare substantial shape, and at its height, or greatest degree of power, emancipated and free from all impediments, or, at least, overcoming, suppressing, and restraining them by the strength of its qualities. For, since every body is susceptible of many united forms of natures in the concrete, the consequence is, that they mutually deaden, depress, break, and confine each other, and the individual forms are obscured. But there are some subjects in which the required nature exists in its full vigour rather than in others, either from the absence of any impediment or the predominance of its quality. Such instances are eminently conspicuous. But, even in these, care must be taken, and the hastiness of the understanding checked, for, whatever makes a show of the form, and forces it forward, is to be suspected, and recourse must be had to severe and diligent exclusion.
For example; let heat be the required nature. The thermometer is a conspicuous instance of the expansive motion, which (as has been observed) constitutes the chief part of the form of heat. For, although flame clearly exhibit expansion, yet, from its being extinguished every moment, it does not exhibit the progress of expansion. Boiling water, again, from its rapid conversion into vapour, does not so well exhibit the expansion of water in its own shape: whilst red-hot ion and the like, are so far from showing this progress, that, on the contrary, the expansion itself is scarcely evident to the senses, on account of its spirit being repressed and weakened by the compact and coarse articles which subdue and restrain it. But the thermometer strikingly exhibits the expansion of the air, as being evident and progressive, durable, and not transitory.
Take another example. Let the required nature be weight. Quicksilver is a conspicuous instance of weight; for it is far heavier than any other substance except gold, which is not much heavier;
and it is a better instance than gold for the purpose of indicating the form of weight. For gold is solid and consistent, which qualities must be referred to density, but quicksilver is liquid, and teeming with spirit, yet much heavier than the diamond and other substances considered to be most solid. Whence it is shown that the form of gravity or weight predominates only in the quantity of matter, and not in the close fitting of it.
25. In the fourth rank of prerogative instances we will class clandestine instances; which we are also wont to call twilight instances. They are, as it were, opposed to the conspicuous instances; for they show the required nature in its lowest state of efficacy, and, as it were, its cradle and first rudiments, making an effort, and a sort of first attempt, but concealed and subdued by a contrary nature. Such instances are, however, of great importance in discovering forms, for, as the conspicuous tend easily to differences, so do the clandestine best lead to genera; that is, to those common natures of which the required natures are only the limits.
As an example: let consistency, or that which confines itself, be the required nature, the opposite of which is a liquid or flowing state. The clandestine instances are such as exhibit some weak and low degree of consistency in fluids, as a water bubble, which is a sort of consistent and bounded pellicle, formed out of the substance of the water. So eaves' droppings, if there be enough water to follow them, draw themselves out into a thin thread, not to break the continuity of the water, but if there be not enough to follow, the water forms itself into a round drop, which is the best form to prevent a breach of continuity: and at the moment the thread ceases, and the water begins to fall in drops, the thread of water recoils upwards to avoid such a breach. Nay, in metals, which, when melted, are liquid, but more tenacious, the melted drops often recoil and are suspended. There is something similar in the instance of the child's looking-glass, which little boys will sometimes form of spittle between rushes, and where the same pellicle of water is observable: and still more in that other amusement of children, when they take some water rendered a little more tenacious by soap, and inflate it with a pipe, forming the water into a sort of castle of bubbles, which assumes such consistency by the interposition of the air, as to admit of being thrown some little distance without bursting. The best example is that of froth and snow, which assume such consistency as almost to admit of being cut, although composed of air and water, both liquids. All these circumstances clearly show that the terms liquid and consistent are merely vulgar notions adapted to the sense, and that in reality all bodies have a tendency to avoid a breach of continuity, faint
Here, nevertheless, great care must be taken, that after the discovery of several of these particular forms, and the establishing of certain partitions or divisions of the required nature derived from them, the human understanding do not at once rest satisfied, without preparing for the investigation of the great or leading form, and, taking it for granted that nature is compound and divided from its very root, despise and reject any farther union as a point of superfluous refinement, and tending to mere abstraction.
and weak in bodies composed of homogeneous at some depth, and are not easily discovered, the parts, (as is the case with liquids,) but more vivid necessity of the case and the infirmity of the and powerful in those of heterogeneous parts: human understanding require that the particular because the approach of heterogeneous matter forms, which collect certain groups of instances binds bodies together, whilst the insinuation of (but by no means all) into some common notion, homogeneous matter loosens and relaxes them. should not be neglected, but most diligently obAgain, to take another example: let the re- served. For whatever unites nature, even imperquired nature be attraction or the cohesion of fectly, opens the way to the discovery of the form. bodies. The most remarkable conspicuous in- The instances, therefore, which are serviceable in stance, with regard to its form, is the magnet. this respect, are of no mean power, but endowed The contrary nature to attraction is non-attrac- with some degree of prerogative. tion, though in a similar substance. Thus, iron does not attract iron, lead lead, wood wood, nor water water. But the clandestine instance is that of the magnet armed with iron, or rather that of iron in the magnet so armed. For its nature is such, that the magnet when armed does not attract iron more powerfully at any given distance, than when unarmed; but if the iron be brought in contact with the armed magnet, the latter will sustain a much greater weight than the simple magnet, from the resemblance of substance in the two portions of iron, a quality alto- For instance, let the required nature be memory, gether clandestine and hidden in the iron, until or that which excites and assists memory. The the magnet was introduced. It is manifest, constitutive instances are order or distribution, therefore, that the form of cohesion is something which manifestly assists memory; topics or comwhich is vivid and robust in the magnet, and hid-monplaces in artificial memory, which may be den and weak in the iron. It is to be observed, either places in their literal sense, as a gate, a also, that small wooden arrows without an iron corner, a window, and the like, or familiar perpoint, when discharged from large mortars, pene- sons and marks, or any thing else, (provided it trate further into wooden substances (such as the be arranged in a determinate order,) as animals, ribs of ships or the like) than the same arrows plants, and words, letters, characters, historical pointed with iron;* owing to the similarity of persons, and the like; of which, however, some substance, though this quality was previously are more convenient than others. All these comlatent in the wood. Again, although in the mass monplaces materially assist memory, and raise it air does not appear to attract air, nor water water, far above its natural strength. Verse, too, is recolyet, when one bubble is brought near another, lected and learned more easily than prose. From they are both more readily dissolved, from the this group of three instances, order, the commontendency to contact of the water with the water, places of artificial memory, and verses, is conand the air with the air. These clandestine stituted one species of aid for the memory, which instances (which are, as has been observed, of may be well termed a separation from infinity. the most important service) are principally to be For when a man strives to recollect or recall any observed in small portions of bodies, for the thing to memory, without a preconceived notion larger masses observe more universal and general or perception of the object of his search, he informs, as will be mentioned in its proper place.quires about, and labours, and turns from point to 26. In the fifth rank of prerogative instances point, as if involved in infinity. But if he have we will class constitutive instances, which we are any preconceived notion, this infinity is separated wont also to call collective instances. They con- off, and the range of his memory is brought within stitute a species or lesser form, as it were, of the closer limits. In the three instances given above, required nature. For since the real forms (which the preconceived notion is clear and determined. are always convertible with the given nature) lie In the first, it must be something that agrees with order; in the second, an image which has some relation or agreement with the fixed common. places; in the third, words which fall into a verse and thus infinity is divided off. Other instances will offer another species, namely, that whatever brings the intellect into contact with Something that strikes the sense, (the principal point of artificial memory,) assists the memory Others again offer another species, namely, whatever excites an impression by any powerful pas
The real cause of this phenomena is the attraction of the
surface of the water in the vessel by the sides of the bubbles, When the bubbles approach, the sides nearest each other both tend to raise the small space of water between them, and consequently less water is raised by each of the nearer sides than by the exterior part of the bubble, and the greater weight of the water raised on the exterior parts pushes the bubbles together. In the same manner a bubble near the side of a vessel is pushed towards it; the vessel and bubble
both drawing the water that is between them. The latter phenomena cannot be explained on Bacon's hypothesis.
fixed for a considerable time after the removal of the source.
In fine, the prerogative of constitutive instances is considerable, for they materially assist the definitions (especially in details) and the divisions or partitions of natures, concerning which Plato has well said, "He who can properly define and divide is to be considered a god."
27. In the sixth rank of prerogative instances we will place similar or proportionate instances, which we are also wont to call physical parallels, or resemblances. They are such as exhibit the resemblances and connexions of things, not in minor forms, (as the constitutive do,) but at once in the concrete. They are, therefore, as it were, the first and lowest steps towards the union of nature; nor do they immediately establish any axiom, but merely indicate and observe a certain
sion, as fear, wonder, shame, delight, assists the memory. Other instances will afford another species thus those impressions remain most fixed in the memory, which are taken from the mind when clear and least occupied by preceding or succeeding notions, such as the things we learn in childhood, or imagine before sleep, and the first time of any circumstance happening. Other instances afford the following species: namely, that a multitude of circumstances or handles assist the memory, such as writing in paragraphs, reading aloud or recitation. Lastly, other instances afford still another species: thus the things we anticipate, and which rouse our attention, are more easily remembered than transient events; as, if you read any work twenty times over, you will not learn it by heart so readily, as if you were to read it but ten times, trying each time to repeat it, and when your memory fails you, look-relation of bodies to each other. But, although ing into the book. There are, therefore, six lesser forms, as it were, of things which assist the memory: namely, 1. The separation of infinity. 2. The connexion of the mind with the senses. 3. The impression in strong passion. 4. The impression on the mind when pure. 5. The multi-sublime and noble axioms, especially such as tude of handles. 6. Anticipation.
Again, for example's sake, let the required nature be taste or the power of tasting. The following instances are constitutive: 1. Those who do not smell, but are deprived by nature of that sense, do not perceive or distinguish rancid or putrid food by their taste; nor garlic from roses, and the like. 2. Again, those whose nostrils are obstructed by accident (such as a cold) do not distinguish any putrid or rancid matter from any thing sprinkled with rose-water. 3. If those who suffer from a cold, blow their noses violently at the very moment in which they have any thing fetid or perfumed in their mouth, or on their palate, they instantly have a clear perception of the fetor or perfume. These instances afford and constitute this species or division of taste; namely, that it is in part nothing else than an internal smelling passing and descending through the upper passages of the nostrils to the mouth and palate. But, on the other hand, those whose power of smelling is deficient, or obstructed, perceive what is salt, sweet, pungent, acid, rough, and bitter, and the like, as well as any one else: so that the taste is clearly something compounded of the internal smelling, and an exquisite species of touch, which we will not here discuss.
they be not of much assistance in discovering forms, yet, they are of great advantage in disclosing the frame of parts of the universe, upon whose members they practise a species of anatomy, and thence occasionally lead us gently on to
relate to the construction of the world, rather than to simple natures and forms.
As an example; take the following similar instances: a mirror and the eye: the formation of the ear, and places which return an echo. From such similarity, besides observing the resem blance, (which is useful for many purposes,) it is easy to collect and form this axiom: That the organs of the senses, and bodies which produce reflections to the senses, are of a similar nature. Again, the understanding once informed of this, rises easily to a higher and nobler axiom; namely, that the only distinction between sensitive and inanimate bodies, in those points in which they agree and sympathise, is this; in the former, animal spirit is added to the arrangement of the body, in the latter it is wanting. So that there might be as many senses in animals as there are points of agreement with inanimate bodies, if the animated body were perforated, so as to allow the spirit to have access to the limb properly disposed for action, as a fit organ. And, on the other hand, there are, without doubt, as many motions in an inanimate, as there are senses in the animated body, though the animal spirit be absent. There must, however, be many more motions in inanimate bodies than senses in the animated, from Again, as another example, let the required the small number of organs of sense. nature be the communication of quality, without plain example of this is afforded by pains. For, intermixture of substance. The instance of light as animals are liable to many kinds and various will afford or constitute one species of communica- descriptions of pains, (such as those of burning, tion, heat and the magnet another. For the com- of intense cold, of pricking, squeezing, stretchmunication of light is momentary and immediate-ing, and the like,) so is it most certain, that the ly arrested upon the removal of the original light. But heat and the magnetic force, when once transmitted to. or excited in another body, remain
same circumstances, as far as motion is concerned, happen to inanimate bodies, such as wood or stone, when burned, frozen, pricked, cut, bent
active and curious in noting the variety of things and explaining the accurate differences of animals, vegetables, and minerals, most of which are the mere sport of nature, rather than of any real utility as concerns the sciences. Pursuits of this nature are certainly agreeable, and sometimes of practical advantage, but contribute little or nothing to the thorough investigation of nature. Our labour must, therefore, be directed towards inquiring into, and observing resemblances and analogies, both in the whole, and its parts, for, they unite nature, and lay the foundation of the sciences.
bruised, and the like; although there be no sensa- the present system. For, it has hitherto been tion, owing to the absence of animal spirit. Again, wonderful as it may appear, the roots and branches of trees are similar instances. For every vegetable swells and throws out its constituent parts towards the circumference, both upwards and downwards. And there is no difference between the roots and branches, except that the root is buried in the earth, and the branches are exposed to the air and sun. For if one take a young and vigorous shoot, and bend it down to a small portion of loose earth, although it be not fixed to the ground, yet will it immediately produce a root, and not a branch. And, vice versâ, if earth be placed above, and so forced down with a stone or any hard substance, as to confine the plant and prevent its branching upwards, it will throw out branches into the air downwards. The gums of trees and most rock gems are similar instances; for both of them are exudations, and filtered juices, derived in the former instance from trees, in the latter from stones; the brightness and clearness of both arising from a delicate and accurate filtering. For nearly the same reason, the hair of animals is less beautiful and vivid in its colour, than the plumage of most birds, because the juices are less delicately filtered through the skin than through the quills.
The scrotum of males, and matrix of females, are also similar instances: so that the noble formation which constitutes the difference of the sexes, appears to differ only as to the one being internal and the other external; a greater degree of heat causing the genitals to protrude in the male, whilst the heat of the female being too weak to effect this, they are retained internally.
The fins of fishes, and the feet of quadrupeds, or the feet and wings of birds, are similar instances; to which Aristotle adds the four folds in the motion of serpents ;* so that, in the formation of the universe, the motion of animals appears to be chiefly effected by four joints or bendings.
The teeth of land animals, and the beaks of birds, are similar instances, whence it is clear, that in all perfect animals there is a determination of some hard substance towards the mouth. Again, the resemblance and conformity of man to an inverted plant is not absurd. For the head is the root of the nerves and animal faculties, and the seminal parts are the lowest, not including the extremities of the legs and arms. But, in the plant, the root (which resembles the head) is regularly placed in the lowest, and the seeds in the highest part.
Lastly, we must particularly recommend and suggest, that man's present industry in the investigation and compilation of natural history be entirely changed, and directed to the reverse of
* Is not this a very hasty generalization? Do serpents
move with four folds only? Observe also the motion of centipedes and other insects.
Here, however, a severe and rigorous caution must be observed, that we only consider as similar and proportionate instances, those which (as we first observed) point out physical resemblances: that is, real and substantial resemblances, deeply founded in nature, and not casual and superficial, much less superstitious or curious; such as those which are constantly put forward by the writers on natural magic, (the most idle of men, and who are scarcely fit to be named in connection with such serious matters as we now treat of,) who, with much vanity and folly, describe, and sometimes, too, invent unmeaning resemblances and sympathies.
But, leaving such to themselves, similar instances are not to be neglected, in the greater portions of the world's conformation; such as Africa and the Peruvian continent, which reaches to the Straits of Magellan; both of which possess a similar isthmus and similar capes, a circumstance not to be attributed to mere accident.
Again; the New and Old World are both of them broad and expanded towards the north, and narrow and pointed towards the south.
Again; we have very remarkable similar instances in the intense cold, towards the middle regions (as it is termed) of the air, and the violent fires which are often found to burst from subterraneous spots, the similarity consisting in both being ends and extremes; the extreme of the nature of cold, for instance, is towards the boundary of heaven, and that of the nature of heat towards the centre of the earth, by a similar species of opposition or rejection of the contrary nature.
Lastly, in the axioms of the sciences there is a similarity of instances worthy of observation. Thus, the rhetorical trope which is called surprise, is similar to that of music termed the declining of a cadence.
Again; the mathematical postulate, that "things which are equal to the same are equal to one another," is similar to the form of the syllogism in logic, which unites things agreeing in the middle term. Lastly: a certain degree of sagacity in collecting and searching for physical points of similarity, is very useful in many respects.
28. In the seventh rank of prerogative instances we will place singular instances, which we are also wont to call irregular or heteroclite, (to borrow a term from the grammarians.) They are such as exhibit bodies in the concrete, of an apparently extravagant and separate nature, agreeing but little with other things of the same species. For, whilst the similar instances resemble each other, those we now speak of are only like themselves. Their use is much the same with that of clandestine instances; they bring out and unite nature, and discover genera or common natures, which must afterwards be limited by real differences. Nor should we desist from inquiry until the properties and qualities of those things, which may be deemed miracles, as it were, of nature, be reduced to, and comprehended in, some form or certain law; so that all irregularity or singularity may be found to depend on some common form; and the miracle only consists in accurate differences, degree, and rare coincidence, not in the species itself. Man's meditation proceeds no farther at present, than just to consider things of this kind as the secrets and vast efforts of nature, without an assignable cause, and, as it were, exceptions to general rules.
As examples of singular instances, we have the sun and moon amongst the heavenly bodies; the magnet amongst minerals; quicksilver amongst metals; the elephant amongst quadrupeds; the venereal sensation amongst the different kinds of touch; the scent of sporting dogs amongst those of smell. The letter S, too, is considered by the grammarians as sui generis, from its easily uniting with double or triple consonants, which no other letter will. These instances are of great value, because they excite and keep alive inquiry, and correct an understanding depraved by habit, and the common course of things.
29. In the eighth rank of prerogative instances, we will place deviating instances; such as the errors of nature, or strange and monstrous objects, in which nature deviates and turns from her ordinary course. For the errors of nature differ from singular instances, inasmuch as the latter are the miracles of species, the former of individuals. Their use is much the same, for they rectify the understanding in opposition to habit, and reveal common forms. For, with regard to these, also, we must not desist from inquiry till we discern the cause of the deviation. The cause does not, however, in such cases, rise to a regular form, but only to the latent process towards such a form. For he who is acquainted with the paths of nature will more readily observe her deviations, and, vice versa, he who has learnt her deviations, will be able more accurately to describe her paths. They differ again from singular instances, by being much more apt for practice, and the operative branch. For it would be very difficult to generate new species, but less so to vary known
species, and thus produce many rare and unusual results.* The passage from the miracles of nature to those of art is easy; for if nature be once seized in her variations, and the cause be manifest, it will be easy to lead her by art to such deviation as she was at first led to by chance; and not only to that, but others, since deviations on the one side lead and open the way to others in every direction. Of this we do not require any examples, since they are so abundant. For a compilation, or particular natural history, must be made of all monsters and prodigious births of nature; of every thing, in short, which is new, rare, and unusual in nature. This should be done with a rigorous selection, so as to be worthy of credit. Those are most to be suspected which depend upon superstition, as the prodigies of Livy, and those, perhaps, but little less which are found in the works of writers on natural magic, or even alchymy, and the like, for such men, as it were, are the very suitors and lovers of fables; but our instances should be derived from some grave and credible history, and faithful narration.
30. In the ninth rank of prerogative instances, we will place bordering instances, which we are also wont to term participants. They are such as exhibit those species of bodies which appear to be composed of two species, or to be the rudiments between the one and the other. They may well be classed with the singular or heteroclite instances; for, in the whole system of things, they are rare and extraordinary. Yet from their dignity they must be treated of and classed separately, for they point out admirably the order and constitution of things, aud suggest the causes of the number and quality of the more common species in the universe, leading the understanding from that which is, to that which is possible.
We have examples of them in moss, which is something between putrescence and a plant; in some comets, which hold a place between stars and ignited meteors; in flying fishes, between fishes and birds; and in bats, between birds and quadrupeds. Again,
"Simia quam similis turpissima bestia nobis."
We have also biformed fetus, mingled species,
and the like.
31. In the tenth rank of prerogative instances, we will place the instances of power, or the fasces, (to borrow a term from the insignia of empire,) which we are also wont to call the wit or hands of man. These are such works as are most noble and perfect, and, as it were, the masterpieces in every art For since our principal object is to
This is well illustrated in plants, for the gardener can
produce endless varieties of any known species, but can
never produce a new species itself.
There is, however, no real approximation to birds in
either the flying fish or bat, any more than a man approxi
mates to a fish because he can swim. The wings of the
flying fish and bat are mere expansions of skin, bearing Do resemblance whatever to those of birds.