314 Inspiring Quotes by Francis Bacon

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Wikipedia Summary for Sir Francis Bacon

Francis Bacon, 1st Viscount St Alban, (22 January 1561 – 9 April 1626), also known as Lord Verulam, was an English philosopher and statesman who served as Attorney General and as Lord Chancellor of England. His works are seen as developing the scientific method and remained influential through the scientific revolution.

Bacon has been called the father of empiricism. He argued for the possibility of scientific knowledge based only upon inductive reasoning and careful observation of events in nature. Most importantly, he argued science could be achieved by the use of a sceptical and methodical approach whereby scientists aim to avoid misleading themselves. Although his most specific proposals about such a method, the Baconian method, did not have long-lasting influence, the general idea of the importance and possibility of a sceptical methodology makes Bacon the father of the scientific method. This method was a new rhetorical and theoretical framework for science, whose practical details are still central to debates on science and methodology.

Francis Bacon was a patron of libraries and developed a system for cataloguing books under three categories – history, poetry, and philosophy – which could further be divided into specific subjects and subheadings. Bacon was educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he rigorously followed the medieval curriculum, largely in Latin.

Bacon was the first recipient of the Queen's counsel designation, conferred in 1597 when Elizabeth I of England reserved him as her legal advisor. After the accession of James VI and I in 1603, Bacon was knighted, then created Baron Verulam in 1618 and Viscount St Alban in 1621.

He had no heirs and so both titles became extinct on his death in 1626 at the age of 65. He died of pneumonia, with one account by John Aubrey stating that he had contracted it while studying the effects of freezing on meat preservation. He is buried at St Michael's Church, St Albans, Hertfordshire.

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--Sir Francis Bacon
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Longer Version:

If a man's wit be wandering, let him study the mathematics; for in demonstrations, if his wit be called away never so little, he must begin again.


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Longer Version:

Travel, in the younger sort, is a part of education; in the elder, a part of experience. He that travelleth into a country before he hath some entrance into the language, goeth to school, and not to travel.


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Longer Version:

Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider. Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested: that is, some books are to be read only in parts, others to be read, but not curiously, and some few to be read wholly, and with diligence and attention.


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Longer Version:

Revenge is a kind of wild justice, which the more man's nature runs to the more ought law to weed it out.


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Longer Version:

Of all virtues and dignities of the mind, goodness is the greatest, being the character of the Deity; and without it, man is a busy, mischievous, wretched thing.


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Longer Version:

Discretion of speech is more than eloquence; and to speak agreeably to him with whom we deal is more than to speak in good words or in good order.


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Longer Version:

The human understanding when it has once adopted an opinion (either as being the received opinion or as being agreeable to itself) draws all things else to support and agree with it. And though there be a greater number and weight of instances to be found on the other side, yet these it either neglects and despises, or else by some distinction sets aside and rejects, in order that by this great and pernicious predetermination the authority of its former conclusions may remain inviolate.


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