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all her fruits about her, we should think it a betraying of our trust to infect such a subject either with an ambitious, an ignorant, or any other faulty manner of treating it." (a) Some years after Bacon had quitted Cambridge, he published his opinions upon the defects of universities; (b) in which, after having warned the community that, as colleges are established for the communication of the knowledge of our predecessors, there should be a college appropriated to the discovery of new truths, a living spring to mix with the stagnant waters, (c) "Let it," he says, "be remembered that there is not any collegiate education of statesmen, and that this has not only a malign influence upon the growth of sciences, but is prejudicial to states and governments, and is the reason why princes find a solitude in regard of able men to serve them in causes of state." (d)
(a) See the chapter on Vanity, in the admirable work, " Search's Light of Nature:" where the distinction between the Love of Excelling and the Love of Excellence as a motive for acquiring knowledge is fully explained.
(6) See note K at the end.
(c) See the sixth defect of universities, in Note M at the end, where he says, the "serpent of Moses should devour the serpents of the enchanters."
(tf) Bacon says, first, therefore, amongst so many great foundations of colleces in Europe, I find strange that they are all dedicated to professions, and none left free to arts and sciences at large. 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. Neither is it to be forgotten, that this dedicating of foundations and dotations to professory learning, hath not only had a malign aspect and influence upon the growth of sciences, but hath also been prejudicial to states and governments. For hence it proceedetl! that princes find a solitude in regard of able men to serve them in causes of state, because there is no education collegiate which is free, where such as were so disposed might give themselves to histories, modern languages, books of policy and civil discourse, and other the like enablements unto service of state. See Note L at the end. This truth, confirmed
These warnings seem to have been disregarded, and the art of governing, not a ship, which would not be attempted without a knowledge of navigation, but the ship of the state, is entrusted, not to a knowledge of the principles of human nature, but to the knowledge of Latin and Greek and verbal criticisms upon the dead languages, (x)
And what has been the result? During the last two centuries one class of statesmen has resisted all improvement, and their opponents have been hurried into intemperate alterations: whilst philosophy, lamenting these contentions, has, instead of advancing the science of government, been occupied in counteracting laws founded upon erroneous principles; Erroneous commercial laws; Erroneous laws against civil and religious liberty; and Erroneous criminal laws, (x)
by daily experience, was, fifty years after his death, repeated by Milton, who indignantly says, " when young men quit the university for the trade of law, they ground their purposes, not on the prudent and heavenly contemplation of justice and equity, which was never taught them, but on the promising and pleasing thoughts of litigious terms, fat contentions and flowing fees: and, if they quit it for state affairs, they betake themselves to this trust with souls so unprincipled in virtue and true generous breeding, that flattery and court-shifts and tyrannous aphorisms appear to them the highest points of wisdom." After having prescribed the proper order of education, he adds, The next removal must be to the study of politics; to know the beginning, end, and reasons of political societies; that they may not in a dangerous fit of the commonwealth be such poor, shaken, uncertain reeds, of such a tottering conscience, as many of our great counsellors have lately shown themselves, but steadfast pillars of the state. After this they are to drive into the grounds of law and legal justice, delivered first, and with best warrant to Moses, and as far as human prudence can be trusted, in those extolled remains of Grecian lawgivers, Lycurgus, Solon, &c. and thence to all the Human edicts and tables with their Justinian; and so to the Saxon laws of England. Milton. Education, vol. i. p. 270.
(s) " Such," says Milton, " are the errors, such the fruits of mispending our prime youth at schools and universities as we do, either in learning mere words, or such things chiefly as were better unlearned. See his Tract on Education.
So deeply was Bacon impressed with the magnitude of this evil, that, by his will he endowed two lectures in either of the universities, by " a lecturer, whether stranger or English, provided he is not professed in divinity, law, or physic."(w0
The subject of universities, and the importance to the Atlantis, community and to the advancement of science, that the spring should not be poisoned or polluted, was ever present to his mind,—and, in the decline of his life, he prepared the plan of a college for the knowledge of the works and creations of God, "from the cedar of Libanus to the moss that groweth out of the wall:" but the plan was framed upon a model so vast, that, without the purse of a prince and the assistance of a people, all attempts to realize it must be vain and hopeless. Some conception of his gorgeous mind in the formation of this college, may appear even at the entrance.
"We have (he says,) two very long and fair galleries: in one of these we place patterns and samples of all manner of the more rare and excellent inventions; in the other 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 in• ventor 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. Upon every invention of value, we erect a statue to the inventor, and give him a liberal and honourable reward. These
(m) See note M at the end.
statues are some of brass; some of marble and touchstone; some of cedar and other special woods gilt and adorned; some of iron; some of silver; some of gold." (m)
Sucli is the splendour of the portico, or ante-room. Passing beyond it, every thing is to be found which imagination can conceive or reason suggest. (n)
(m) This entrance to Bacon's college always forces itself on my mind, when I visit the University Library of Cambridge: in which I see the portrait of Mr. Thomas Nicholson, known by the name of Maps, the proprietor of a circulating library, a laborious pioneer in literature. Under his feet are some relics from classic ground, more valuable, perbaps, for their antiquity than for their beauty. Delightful as is the love of antiquity, this artificial retrospective extension of our existence (see Shakespeare's Sonnet 123), might it not be adoned, in the present times, by casts from the Elgin marbles, of which the cost does not exceed £200. By one of the universities (I think it is of Dublin) these casts have been procured. Let any parent of the mind, who considers the various modes by which the heart of a nation is formed (which is beautifully described in Ramsden's sermon on the Cessation of Hostilities), look in Boydell's Shakespeare, at Barry's Cordelia, to be found, most probably, in the Fitzwilliam collection: and let him compare it with the magnificent affecting fainting female in the Elgin marbles, and he will see the benefit which would result from the university containing these valuable relics.
(n) We have large and deep caves of several depths: the deepest are sunk six hundred fathom, and some of them are digged and made under great hills and mountains; so that if you reckon together the depth of the hill and the depth of the cave, they are (some of them) above three miles deep: these caves we call the lower region, and we use them for all coagulations, indurations, refrigerations, and conservations of bodies. We use them likewise for the imitation of natural mines, and the producing also of new artificial metals., by compositions and materials.
We have high towers, the highest about half a mile in height, and some of them likewise set upon high mountains, so that the vantage of the hill with the tower is in the highest of them three miles at least. And tliese places we call the upper region. We use these towers, according to their several heights and situations, for insolation, refrigeration, conservation, and for the view of divers meteors, as winds, rain, snow, hail, and some of the fiery meteors.
We have great lakes, both salt and fresh; whereof we have use for the fish and fowl. We use them also for burials of some natural bodies: for we
After having enumerated all the instruments of knowledge, "Such," he says, "is a relation of the true state of Solomon's house, the end of which foundation is the knowledge of causes, and secret motions of things; and the
find a difference in things buried in earth, or in air below the earth; and things buried in water. We have also some rocks in the midst of the sea; and some bays upon the shore for some works, wherein is required the air arid vapour of the sea. We have likewise violent streams and cataracts, which serve us for many motions: and likewise engines for multiplying and enforcing of winds, to set also on going divers motions.
We have also a number of artificial wells and fountains, made in imitation of the natural sources and baths; as tincted upon vitriol, sulphur, steel, brass, lead, nitre, and other minerals.
We have also great and spacious houses, where we imitate and demonstrate meteors, as snow, bail, rain, some artificial rains of bodies, and not of water, thunders, lightnings.
We have also certain chambers, which we call chambers of health, where we qualify the air as we think good and proper for the cure of divers diseases, and preservation of health. We have also fair and large baths of several mixtures, for the cure of diseases.
We have also large and various orchards and gardens; wherein we do not so much respect beauty, as variety of ground and soil, proper for divers trees and herbs: and some very spacious, where trees and berries are set, whereof we make divers kinds of drinks, besides the vineyards. In these we practise likewise all conclusions of grafting and inoculating, as well of wild trees as fruit-trees, which produceth many effects.
We have also furnaces of great diversities, and that keep great diversity of heats, fierce and quick, strong and constant, soft and mild, blown, quiet, dry, moist, and the like. But above all we have heats, in imitation of the sun's and heavenly bodies heats, that pass divers inequalities, and (as it were) orbs, progresses and returns, whereby we may produce admirable effects.
We procure means of seeing objects afar off, as in the heaven, and remote places; and represent things near as alar off, and things afar off as near, making feigned distances. We have also helps for the sight, far above spectacles and glasses.
We have also parks and enclosures of all sorts of beasts and birds; which we use not only for view or rareness, but likewise for dissections and trials, that thereby we may take light what may be wrought upon the body of man.