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between Apollo president of the Muses, and Pan god of the flocks, judged for plenty; or of Paris, that judged for beauty aad love against wisdom and power; nor of Agrippina, "occidat matrem, modo imperet," that preferred empire with conditions never so detestable; or of Ulysses, "qui vetulam prætulit immortalitati." being a figure of those which prefer custom, and habit before all excellency ; or of a number of the like popular judgments. For these things continue as they have been: but so will that also continue whereupon learning hath ever relied, and which faileth not: "justificata est sapientia a filiis suis."







1. Dedication to the king

2. Preliminary considerations.

1. Modes by which difficulties are overcome.

1. Amplitude of reward to encourage exertion. 2. Soundness of direction to prevent confusion.


3. Conjunction of labours to supply the frailty of


2. The objects about which the acts of merit towards

learning are conversant

1. The places of learning.

2. The books of learning.

3. The persons of the learned.



As water, whether it be the dew of heaven, or the springs of the earth, doth scatter and lose itself in the

ground, except it be collected into some receptacle, where
it may by union comfort and sustain itself, (and for that
cause the industry of man hath made and framed spring-
heads, conduits, cisterns, and pools, which men have
accustomed likewise to beautify and adorn with accom-
plishments of magnificence and state, as well as of use and
necessity) so this excellent liquor of knowledge, whether it
descend from divine inspiration, or spring from human
sense, would soon perish and vanish to oblivion, if it were
not preserved in books, traditions, conferences, and places
appointed, as universities, colleges, and schools, for the
receipt and comforting of the same.

1. Works relating to places of learning.
1. Foundations and buildings.
2. Endowments with revenues.
2. Endowments with franchises.
4. Institutions for government.

1. Libraries.



They are as the shrines where all the relics of the ancient saints, full of true virtue, and that without delusion or imposture, are preserved and reposed.

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If men judge that learning should be referred to action, they judge well; but in this they fall into the error described in the ancient fable, in which the other parts of the body did suppose the stomach had been idle, because it neither performed the office of motion, as the limbs do, nor of sense,


as the head doth; but yet, notwithstanding, it is the stomach that digesteth and distributeth to all the rest: so if any man think philosophy and universality to be idle studies, he doth not consider that all professions are from thence served and supplied. And this I take to be a great cause that hath hindered the progression of learning, because these fundamental knowledges have been studied but in passage. For if you will have a tree bear more fruit than it hath used to do, it is not any thing you can do to the boughs, but it is the stirring of the earth, and putting new mould about the roots, that must work it.

It is injurious to government that there is not any collegiate education for statesmen

Second defect. The salaries of lecturers are too small



If you will have sciences flourish, you must observe David's military law, which was, "That those which staid "with the carriage should have equal part with those which 66 were in the action.


Third defect. There are not sufficient funds for providing models, instruments, experiments, &c. (m) Fourth defect. There is a neglect in the governors of consultation, and, in superiors of visitation as to the propriety of continuing or amending the established courses of study

1. Scholars study logic and rhetoric (n)



For minds empty and unfraught with matter, and which have not gathered that which Cicero calleth " Sylva" and "supellex," stuff and variety, to begin with those arts, (as if one should learn to weigh, or to measure, or to paint the wind), doth work but this effect, that the wisdom of those arts, which is great and universal, is almost made contemptible, and is degenerate into childish sophistry and ridiculous affectation. (n)

(m) See note (M) at the end.
(n) See note (N) at the end.

2. There is too great a divorce between invention and memory 97 Fifth defect. There is a want of mutual intelligence between different universities


Sixth defect. There is a want of proper rewards for enquiries in new and unlaboured parts of learning

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The opinion of plenty is amongst the causes of want and the great quantity of books maketh a shew rather of superfluity than lack: which surcharge, nevertheless, is not to be remedied by making no more books but by making more good books, which, as the serpent of Moses, might devour the serpents of the enchanters.

I will now attempt to make a general and faithful perambulation of learning, with an inquiry what parts thereof lie fresh and waste


1. History relating to the memory.

2. Poetry relating to the imagination.

3. Philosophy relating to the reason.



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1. It is the history of learning from age to age.

2. It is in general deficient, but there are some slight memorials

of particular sects and sciences.

3. The uses of literary history.

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* The arrangement of this part is altered in the Treatise De Augmentis.

History of Creatures.

1. It is the history of nature in course. 2. It is extant and in perfection.

History of Marvails.

1. It is the history of nature wandering. 2. It is deficient.

3. Its uses.

1. To correct the partiality of axioms.

2. To discover the wonders of art.

It is, as it were, hounding Nature in her wanderings to be able to lead her afterwards to the same place again.

4. Different marvails.

History of Arts (0)


1. It is in general deficient.

2. It is considered not elevating to enquire into matters mecha



The truth is, they be not the highest instances that give the securest information; as may be well expressed in the tale so common of the philosopher, that while he gazed upwards to the stars fell into the water; for if he had looked down he might have seen the stars in the water, but looking aloft he could not see the water in the stars. So it cometh often to pass, that mean and small things discover great, better than great can discover the small.

Aristotle noteth well," that the nature of every thing is best seen in its smallest portions." And for that cause he inquireth the nature of a commonwealth, first in a family, and the simple conjugations of man and wife, purent and child, master and servant, which are in every cottage.

The turning of iron touched with the loadstone towards the north, was found out in needles of iron, not in bars of iron.

3. The use of mechanical history is great

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As a man's disposition is never well known till he be

(0) See note (0) at the end.

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