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THE WORKS

OF

FRANCIS BACON,

Lord Chancellor of England.

A NEW EDITION:

BY

BASIL MONTAGU, ESQ.

VOL. XVI.

PART THE SECOND.

LONDON:

WILLIAM PICKERING.

MDCCCXXXIV.

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The foundation position is, that “ All tangible bodies All bodies

have a contain a spirit enveloped with the grosser body. There

spirit. is no known body, in the upper parts of the earth, without its spirit, whether it be generated by the attenuating and concocting power of the celestial warmth, or otherwise; for the pores of tangible bodies are not a vacuum, but either contain air, or the peculiar spirit of the substance; and this not a vis, an energy, or a fiction, but a real, subtile, and invisible, and, therefore, neglected body, circumscribed by place and dimension." (a)

This doctrine is thus stated in the Excursion:

To every form of being is assigned
An active principle, howe'er removed
From sense and observation; it subsists
In all things, in all natures, in the stars
Of azure heaven, the unenduring clouds,
In flower and tree, and every pebbly stone
That

paves the brooks, the stationary rocks,
The moving waters, and the invisible air.
Whate'er exists hath properties that spread
Beyond itself, communicating good,
A simple blessing or with evil mixed :
Spirit that knows no insulated spot,
No chasm, no solitude: from link to link
It circulates, the soul of all the worlds.”(6)

(a) “ The knowledge of man (hitherto) hath been determined by the view or sight; so that whatsoever is invisible, either in respect of the fineness of the body itself, or the smallness of the parts, or of the subtilty of the motion, is little inquired. The spirits, or pneumaticals, that are in all tangible bodies, are scarce known. Sometimes they take them for vacuum; whereas they are the most active of bodies. Sometimes they take them for air; from which they differ exceedingly, as much as wine from water, and as wood from earth. Sometimes they will have them to be natural heat, or a portion of the element of fire; whereas some of them are crude and cold. And sometimes they will have them to be the virtues and qualities of the tangible parts, which they see; whereas they are things by themselves, and then, when they come to plants and living creatures, they call

(6) Excursion, B. 9. See note (u), next page. VOL. XV.

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