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dent or intermixture of humour. That a religion which confifteth in rytes and forms of adoration, and not in confeffions and beliefs, is adverse to knowledge, because men having liberty to enquire and discourse of theology at pleasure, it cometh to pass that all inquifition of nature endeth and limiteth it felf in fuch metaphysical or theological difcourfe; whereas if mens wits be shut out of that port, it turneth them again to difcover, and fo to seek reason of reafon more deeply. And that fuch was the religion of the Heathen. That a religion that is jealous of the variety of learning, difcourfe, opinions and fects (as mifdoubting it may shake the foundations) or that cherisheth devotion upon fimplicity and ignorance, as afcribing ordinary effects to the immediate working of God, is adverse to knowledge. That fuch is the religion of the Turk, and fuch hath been the abuse of Christian religion at fome feveral times, and in fome feveral factions. And of the fingular advantage which the Chriftian religion hath towards the furtherance of true knowledge, in that it excludeth and interdicteth human reafon, whether by interpretation or anticipation, from examining or difcuffing of the myfteries and principles of faith.



F the impediments which have been in the nature of fociety, and the policies of ftate. That there is no compofition of eftate or fociety, nor order or quality of perfons, which have not fome point of contrariety towards true knowledge. That Monarchies incline wits to profit and pleafure, and commonwealths to glory

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and vanity. That Universities incline wits to fophiftry and affectation; Cloifters to fables and unprofitable fubtilty; Study at large to variety; and that it is hard to fay, whether mixture of contemplations with an active life, or retiring wholly to contemplations, do difable and hinder the mind more.

TEMPORIS PARTUS MASCULUS, five de Interpretatione Naturæ, lib. 3.

1. Perpolitio & applicatio mentis.

2. Lumen Natura; feu formula Interpretationis. 3. Natura illuminata; five veritas rerum.


CAP. I. Tradendi modus legitimus.

EPERIO (fili) complures in rerum fcientia, quam

fibi videntur adepti, vel proferenda vel rurfus occultanda neutiquam è fide fua ac officio fe gerere. Eodem damno, licet culpa fortaffis minore peccant, & illi qui probe quidem morati, fed minus prudentes funt, nec artem ac præcepta tenent quo quæque modo fint proponenda. Neque tamen de hac tradentium fcientiarum five malignitate five infcitia querela eft inftituenda. Sane fi rerum pondera docendi imperitia fregiffent, non immerito quis indignetur. Rerum vero ineptiis docendi importunitatem vel jure deberi exiftimandum eft. Ego autem longe ab his diverfus te impertiturus non ingenii commenta nec verborum umbras, nec religionem admiftam, nec obfervationes quafdam populares, vel experimenta quædam nobilia in theoriæ fabulas concinnata; fed re

vera naturam cum fœtibus fuis tibi addicturus & mancipaturus, num videor dignum argumentum præ manibus habere quod tractandi vel ambitione vel infcitia, vel vitio quovis polluam? Ita fim (fili) itaque humani in univerfum imperii anguftias nunquam fatis deploratas ad datos fines proferam (quod mihi ex humanis folum in votis eft) ut tibi optima fide, atque ex altiffima mentis meæ providentia, & exploratiffimo rerum & animorum ftatu hæc traditurus fim, modo omnium maximè legitimo. Quis tandem (inquies) est modus ille legitimus ? Quin tu mitte artes & ambages, rem exhibe nudam nobis, ut judicio noftro uti poffimus. Atque utinam (fili fuaviflime) eo loco fint res veftræ ut hoc fieri poffet. An tu cenfes, cum omnes omnium mentium aditus ac meatus obfcuriffimis idolis, iifque alte hærentibus & inuftis obfeffi & obftructi fint, veris rerum & nativis radiis finceras & politas areas adeffe. Nova eft ineunda ratio, qua mentibus obductiffimis illabi poffimus. Ut enim phreneticorum deliramenta arte & ingenio fubvertuntur, vi & contentione efferantur, omnino ita in hac univerfali infania mos gerendus eft. Quid? leviores illæ conditiones, quæ ad legitimum fcientiæ tradendæ modum pertinent, an tibi tam expeditæ & faciles videntur? ut modus innocens fit; id eft, nulli prorfus errori anfam & occafionem præbeat? ut vim quandam infitam & innatam habeat, tum ad fidem conciliandam, tum ad pellendas injurias temporis, adeo ut fcientia ita tradita, veluti planta vivax & vegeta, quotidie ferpat & adolefcat? ut idoneum & legitimum fibi lectorem fe ponat & quafi adoptet? Atque hæc omnia præftiterim, necne, ad tempus futurum provoco.

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1. FRAUNCIS BACON thought in this manner. The knowledge whereof the world is now poffefsed, especiallie that of nature, extendeth not to magnitude and certaintie of workes. The Phyfician pronounceth many diseases incurable, and faileth oft in the reft. The Alchymifts wax old and dye in hopes. The Magicians performe nothing that is permanent and profitable. The Mechaniques take small light from naturall philosophie, and doe but spynne on their own little thridds. Chaunce fometimes difcovereth inventions, but that worketh not

in years, but ages. So he faw well, that the inventions known are very unperfitt, and that newe are not like to be brought to light, but in great length of tyme, and that those which are, came not to light by philofophie.

2. He thought also this state of knowledge was the worse, because men strive (against themselves) to fave the credit of ignorance, and to fatisfie themselves in this po


vertie. for the Phyfician, befides the cauteles of practice, hath this generall cautele of art, that he dischargeth the weakneffe of his art upon fuppofed impoffibilities; neither can his art be condemned, when it felf judgeth. That philofophy alfo, out of which the knowledge of phyfick which nowe is in ufe is hewed, receyveth certain pofitions and opinions, which (if they be well weighed) induce this perfwafion, that no great workes are to be expected from art, and the hand of man; as in particular, that opinion, that the heate of the funne and fire differ in kind; and that other, that compofition is the. work of man, and mixture is the work of nature, and the like; all tending to the circumfcription of man's power, and to artificiall defpaire; killing in men, not onlie the comfort of imagination, but the industry of tryall: only upon vaine glorye, to have their art thought perfitt, and that all is impoffible, that is not alreadie found. The Alchymift difchargeth his art upon his own errors, either fuppofing a misunderstanding of the wordes of his authors, which maketh him liften after auricular traditions; or els a failing in the true proportions and feruples of practife, which maketh him renew infinitelie his tryalls, and finding alfo that he lighteth upon fome mean experiments and conclufions by the waye, feedeth upon them, and magnifieth them to the moft, and fupplieth the reft in hopes. The Magician, when he findeth fomething (as he conceiveth) above nature, effected; thinketh, when a breach is once made in nature, that it is allone, to perform great things and small; not fecing, that they are but fubjects of a certaine kind, wherein magick and fuperftition hath played in all times. The mechani


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