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cines; wherein you may easily think, if we have such variety of plants and living creatures more than you have in Europe, (for we know what you have,) the simples, drugs, and ingredients of medicines, must likewise be in so much the greater variety. We have them likewise of divers ages, and long fermentations. And for their preparations, we have not only all manner of exquisite distillations and separations, and especially by gentle heats and percolations through divers strainers, yea, and substances; but also exact forms of composition, whereby they incorporate almost as they were natural simples.

"We have also divers mechanical arts, which you have not; and stuffs made by them; as papers, linen, silks, tissues: dainty works of feathers of wonderful lustre; excellent dyes, and many others; and shops likewise as well for such as are not brought into vulgar use among us, as for those that are. For you must know, that of the things before recited, many of them are grown into use throughout the kingdom; but yet, if they did flow from our invention, we have of them also for patterns and principals.

also glasses and means, to see small and minute bodies perfectly and distinctly; as the shapes and colours of small flies and worms, grains and flaws in gems, which cannot otherwise be seen; observations in urine and blood, not otherwise to be seen. We make artificial rainbows, halos, and circles about light. We represent also all manner of reflections, refractions, and multiplications of visual beams of objects.

"We have also precious stones of all kinds, many of them of great beauty, to you unknown; crystals likewise; and glasses of divers kinds; and amongst them some of metals vitrificated, and other materials, besides those of which you make glass. Also a number of fossils, and imperfect minerals, which you have not. Likewise loadstones of prodigious virtue; and other rare stones, both natural and artificial.

“We have also sound-houses, where we practise and demonstrate all sounds, and their generation. We have harmonies which you have not of quarter-sounds, and lesser slides of sounds. Divers instruments of music likewise to you unknown, some sweeter than any you have; to"We have also furnaces of great diversities, gether with bells and rings that are dainty and and that keep great diversities of heats; fierce sweet. We represent small sounds as great and and quick; strong and constant; soft and mild; deep; likewise great sounds extenuate and sharp; blown, quiet, dry, moist; and the like. But we make divers tremblings and warblings of above all, we have heats in imitation of the sun's sounds, which in their original are entire. We and heavenly bodies' heats, that pass divers ine- represent and imitate all articulate sounds and qualities, and, as it were, orbs, progresses and re-letters, and the voice and notes of beasts and turns, whereby, we produce admirable effects. birds. We have certain helps, which set to the Besides, we have heats of dungs, and of bellies ear do further the hearing greatly. We have and maws of living creatures, and of their bloods also divers strange and artificial echoes, reflectand bodies; and of hays and herbs laid up moist; ing the voice many times, and as it were tossing it: of lime unquenched; and such like. Instruments and some that give back the voice louder than it also which generate heat only by motion. And came; some shriller, and some deeper; yea, farther, places for strong insolations; and again, some rendering the voice differing in the letters places under the earth, which by nature or art, or articulate sound from that they receive. We yield heat. These divers heats we use, as the have also means to convey sounds in trunks and nature of the operation which we intend requir- pipes, in strange lines and distances. eth. "We have also perfume-houses; wherewith we join also practices of taste. We multiply smells, which may seem strange. We imitate smells, making all smells to breathe out of other mixtures than those that give them. We make divers imitations of taste likewise, so that they will deceive any man's taste. And in this house we contain also a comfiture-house; where we make all sweetmeats, dry and moist, and divers pleasant wines, milks, broths, and salads, in far greater variety than you have.

“We have also perspective houses, where we make demonstrations of lights and radiations; and of all colours; and out of things uncoloured and transparent, we can represent unto you all several colours; not in rainbows as it is in gems and prisms, but of themselves single. We represent also all multiplications of light, which we carry to great distance; and make so sharp, as to discern small points and lines; also all colorations of light all delusions and deceits of the sight, in figures, magnitudes, motions, colours; all demonstrations of shadows. We find also divers means yet unknown to you, of producing of light originally from divers bodies. We procure means of seeing objects afar off; as in the heaven and remote places; and represent things near as far off; and things afar off as near; making feigned distances. We have also helps for the sight, far ahove spectacles and glasses in use. We have

"We have also engine-houses, where are prepared engines and instruments for all sorts of motions. There we imitate and practise to make swifter motions than any you have, either out of your muskets, or any engine that you have; and to make them, and multiply them more easily and with small force, by wheels and other means: and to make them stronger, and more violent than yours are; exceeding your greatest cannons and

practice for man's life and knowledge, as well for works as for plain demonstration of causes, means. natural divinations, and the easy and clear disco very of the virtues and parts of bodies. These we call dowry-men or benefactors.

basilisks. We represent also ordnance and in- | about how to draw out of them things of use and struments of war, and engines of all kinds: and likewise new mixtures and compositions of gunpowder, wildfires burning in water, and unquenchable. Also fireworks of all variety both for pleasure and use. We imitate also flight of birds; we have some degrees of flying in the air; “Then after divers meetings and consults of our we have ships and boats for going under water, whole number, to consider of the former labours and brooking of seas; also swimming-girdles and and collections, we have three that take care, out supporters. We have divers curious clocks, and of them, to direct new experiments, of a higher other like motions of return, and some perpetual | light, more penetrating into nature than the formotions. We imitate also motions of living crea- mer. These we call lamps. tures by images of men, beasts, birds, fishes, and serpents; we have also a great number of other various motions, strange for equality, fineness, and subtilty.

"We have also a mathematical house, where are represented all instruments, as well of geometry as astronomy, exquisitely made.

"We have three others that do execute the experiments so directed, and report them. These we call inoculators.

"Lastly, we have three that raise the former discoveries by experiments into greater observations, axioms, and aphorisms. These we call interpreters of nature.

"We have also, as you must think, novices and apprentices, that the succession of the former employed men do not fail: besides a great number of And servants, and attendants, men and women. this we do also: we have consultation, which of the inventions and experiences which we have discovered shall be published, and which not: and take all an oath of secrecy, for the concealing of those which we think fit to keep a secret: though some of those we do reveal sometimes to the state, and some not.

"We have also houses of deceits of the senses; where we represent all manner of feats of juggling, false apparitions, impostures, and illusions; and their fallacies. And surely you will easily believe that we that have so many things truly natural, which induce admiration, could in a world of particulars deceive the senses if we would disguise those things, and labour to make them seem more miraculous. But we do hate all impostures and lies: insomuch as we have severally forbidden it to all our fellows, under pain of ignominy and fines, that they do not show any natural work or thing, adorned or swelling; but only pure as it is, and without all affectation of strangeness. "These are, my son, the riches of Solomon's more rare and excellent inventions: in the other House.

"For the several employments and offices of our fellows; we have twelve that sail into foreign countries, under the names of other nations, for our own we conceal, who bring us the books, and obstructs, and patterns of experiments of all other parts. These we call merchants of light.

"We have three that collect the experiments which are in all books. These we call depredators.

"We have three that collect the experiments of all mechanical arts; and also of liberal sciences; and also of practices which are not brought into arts. These we call mystery-men.

"We have three that try new experiments, such as themselves think good. These we call pioneers or miners.

“We have three that draw the experiments of the former four into titles, and tablets, to give the better light for the drawing of observations and axioms out of them. These we call compilers.

"We have three that bend themselves, looking into the experiments of their fellows, and cast

"For our ordinances and rites: we have two very long and fair galleries: in one of these we place patterns and samples of all manner of the

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we place the statues of all principal inventors. There we have the statue of your Columbus, that discovered the West Indies: also the inventor of ships: your monk that was the inventor of ordnance, and of gunpowder: the inventor of music: the inventor of letters: the inventor of printing: the inventor of observations of astronomy: the inventor of works in metal: the inventor of glass: the inventor of silk of the worm: the inventor of wine: the inventor of corn and bread: the inventor of sugars: and all these by more certain tradition than you have. Then have we divers inventors of our own excellent works; which since you have not seen, it were too long to make descriptions of them; and besides, in the right understanding of these descriptions you might easily err. For upon every invention of value, we erect a statue to the inventor, and give him a liberal and honourable reward. These statues are some of brass; some of marble and touch-stone; some of cedar, and other special woods gilt and adorned: some of iron; some of silver; some of gold.

"We have certain hymns and services, which we say daily, of laud and thanks to God for his marvellous works: and forms of prayers, implor

mg his aid and blessing for the illumination of our | which I have made. I give thee leave to publish labours; and the turning of them into good and it for the good of other nations; for we here are holy uses.

"Lastly, we have circuits or visits of divers principal cities of the kingdom; where as it cometh to pass, we do publish new profitable inventions as we think good. And we do also declare natural divinations of diseases, plagues, swarms of hurtful creatures, scarcity, tempests, earthquakes, great inundations, comets, temperature of the year, and divers other things; and we give counsel thereupon what the people shall do for the prevention and remedy of them."

And when he had said this he stood up; and I, as I had been taught, kneeled down; and he laid his right hand upon my head, and said; "God bless thee, my son, and God bless this relation

in God's bosom a land unknown." And so he left me; having assigned a value of about two thousand ducats, for a bounty to me and my fellows. For they give great largesses where they come upon all occasions.

[THE REST WAS NOT PERFECTED.]

NOTE.

Referring to page 255,

There have been various editions of the New Atlantis. In 1631, it was translated into French, of which there is a copy in the British Museum; where there is also the New Atlantis continued A. D. 1660, by R. H. Esq. wherein is set forth a platform of monarchical government: and also in occupations des academies, &c. par M. R.

French, A. D. 1702, avec des reflexions sur l'institution et les

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THE WISDOM OF THE ANCIENTS.

The first edition of this work was published in Latin in the year 1609. It is entitled—

FRANCISCI
BACONI

EQVITIS AVRATI,

PROCVRATORIS SE

CVNDI, JACOBI REGIS
MAGNE BRITANNIÆ
DE SAPIENTIA

VETERVM LIBER,

AD INCLYTAM ACADEMIAM

CANTABRIGIENSEM.

LONDINI

EXCUDEBAT ROBERTUS BAR

KERUS SERENISSIMÆ REGIE

MAIESTATIS TYPOGRAPHUS

ANNO 1609.

In February 27, 1610, Lord Bacon wrote "To MR. MATTHEW, upon sending his book De Sapientia Veterum.'

"Mr. Matthew,

"I do very heartily thank you for your etter of the 24th of August from Salamanca; and in recompence thereof I send you a little work of mine that hath begun to pass the world. They tell me my Latin is turned into silver, and become current: had you been here, you should have been my inquisitor before it came forth: but, I think, the greatest inquisitor in Spain will allow it. But one thing you must pardon me, if I make no haste to believe, that the world should be grown to such an ecstasy as to reject truth in philosophy, because the author dissenteth in religion; no more than they do by Aristotle or Averroes. My great work goeth forward; and after my manner, I alter ever when I add. So that nothing is finished till all be finished. This I have written in the midst of a term and parliament; thinking no time so possessed, but that I should talk of these matters with so good and dear a friend. And so with my wonted wishes I leave you to God's goodness." "From Gray's Inn, Feb. 27, 1610."

And in his letter to Father Fulgentio, giving some account of his will not only be enlarged in number, but still more in substance. piece De Sapientia Veterum.'

writings, he says, " My Essays Along with them goes the little

Bacon's sentiments with respect to these fables may be found in the "Advancement of Learning," and in the "De Augmentis," under the head of Poetry.

In the "Advancement of Learning," he says, "There remaineth yet another use of poesy parabolical, opposite to that which we last mentioned: for that tendeth to demonstrate and illustrate that which is taught or delivered, and this other to retire and obscure it: that is, when the secrets and mysteries of religion, policy, or philosophy, are involved in fables or parables. Of this in divine

271

poesy we see the use is authorized. In heathen poesy we see the exposition of fables doth fall out sometimes with great felicity; as in the fable that the giants being overthrown in their war against the gods, the Earth their mother in revenge thereof brought forth Fame:

"Illam Terra parens, irâ irritata deorum,

Extremam, ut perhibent, Coo Enceladoque sororem
Progenuit:"

expounded, that when princes and monarchs have suppressed actual and open rebels, then the malignity of the people, which is the mother of rebellion, doth bring forth libels and slanders, and taxations of the state, which is of the same kind with rebellion, but more feminine. So in the fable, that the rest of the gods having conspired to bind Jupiter, Pallas called Briareus with his hundred hands to his aid: expounded, that monarchies need not fear any curbing of their absoluteness by mighty subjects, as long as by wisdom they keep the hearts of the people, who will be sure to come in on their side. So in the fable, that Achilles was brought up under Chiron the Centaur, who was part a man and part a beast: expounded ingeniously, but corruptly by Machiavel, that it belongeth to the education and discipline of princes to know as well how to play the part of the lion in violence, and the fox in guile, as of the man in virtue and justice. Nevertheless, in many the like encounters, I do rather think that the fable was first and the exposition then devised, than that the moral was first, and thereupon the fable framed. For I find it was an ancient vanity in Chrysippus, that troubled himself with great contention to fasten the assertions of the Stoics upon the fictions of the ancient poets; but vet that all the fables and fictions of the poets were but pleasure and not figure, I interpose no opinion. Surely of those poets which are now extant, even Homer himself, (notwithstanding he was made a kind of Scripture by the latter schools of the Grecians,) yet I should without any difficulty pronounce that his fables had no such inwardness in his own meaning; but what they might have upon a more original tradition, is not easy to affirm; for he was not the inventor of many of

them."

In the treatise "De Augmentis," the same sentiments will be found with a slight alteration in the expressions. He says, "There is another use of parabolical poesy, opposite to the former, which tendeth to the folding up of those things, the dignity whereof deserves to be retired and distinguished, as with a drawn curtain: that is, when the secrets and mysteries of religion, policy, and philosophy are veiled and invested with fables, and parables. But whether there be any mystical sense couched under the ancient fables of the poets, may admit some doubt: and indeed for our part we incline to this opinion, as to think, that there was an infused mystery in many of the ancient fables of the poets. Neither doth it move us that these matters are left commonly to school-boys, and grammarians, and are so embased, that we should therefore make a slight judgment upon them; but contrariwise because it is clear, that the writings which recite those fables, of all the writings of men, next to sacred writ, are the most ancient; and that the fables themselves are far more ancient than they (being they are alleged by those writers, not as excogitated by them, but as credited and recepted before) seem to be, like a thin rarified air, which from the traditions of more ancient nations, fell into the flutes of the Grecians."

This tract seems in former times, to have been much valued, for the same reason, perhaps, which Bacon assigns for the currency of the Essays; "because they are like the late new halfpence, which, though the silver is good, yet the pieces are small." Of this tract, Archbishop Tenison, in his Baconiana, says, “In the seventh place, I may reckon his book De Sapientia Veterum, written by him in Latin, and set forth a second time, with enlargement;1 and translated into English by Sir Arthur Georges: a book in which the sages of former times are rendered more wise than it may be they were, by so dexterous an interpreter of their fables. It is this book which Mr. Sandys means, in those words which he hath put before his notes, on the Metamorphosis of Ovid. Of modern writers, I have received the greatest light from Geraldus, Pontanus, Ficinus, Vives, Comes, Scaliger, Sabinus, Pierius, and the crown of the latter, the Viscount of St. Albans.'

It is true, the design of this book was instruction in natural and civil matters, either couched by the ancients under those fictions, or rather made to seem to be so by his lordship's wit, in the opening and applying of them. But because the first ground of it is poetical story, therefore let it have this place, till a fitter be found for it."

The author of Bacon's Life, in the Biographia Britannica, says, "that he might relieve himself a little from the severity of these studies, and as it were amuse himself with erecting a magnificent pavilion, while his great palace of philosophy was building, he composed and sent abroad in 1610, his celebrated treatise Of the Wisdom of the Ancients, in which he showed that none had studied them more closely, was better acquainted with their beauties, or had pierced deeper into their meaning. There have been very few books published, either in this or in any other nation, which either deserved or met with more general applause than this, and scarce any that are like to retain it longer, for in this 1 In the year 1617, in Latin. It was published in Italian in 1618-in French in 1619.

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