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formalism, but method which bodies forth the spirit of order, -method that is bold as well as subtle, plastic as well as scientific, and that glorifies the rigor of logic with the grace of beauty. Single sentences of Bacon might furnish subjects for treatises, or might be unfolded into long, yet not superficial discourses; but in Bacon's style and matter they are hardly ever casual or disconnected. They may indeed be used and so they often are used as maxims separately from the context, yet it is ever in union with the context they have their deepest import and their greatest force. Nearly always they are parts of a consistent whole, in which each has its own place and contributes to the collective harmony. The mental wealth of Bacon is in this way like the wealth of Nature it is original, vital, organic; and such it should be, since Nature only is its eternal counterpart.
As to Bacon's wealth of faculty, there are two ways of regarding it,—either by looking at faculty abstractly as a function of mind, or concretely as we see it in its work. Abstractly, we find the several mental faculties not only complete in Bacon, but each on a grand scale. The power of thinking is an evident attribute in his genius. It is so in patience, care, acuteness, caution, and with continued energy of attention. It is not less so in height, depth, and compass. This power in the mind of Bacon is intense without loss of fulness, vehement without loss of precision, and rapid without loss of exactness. It is equally speculative and practical; it is alike methodical and free, alike great in dealing with the facts of common experience and with the high generalizations of reason. The power of imagination is in the same manner notable in the genius of Bacon. This power in Bacon is at once rich, sweet, strong and these qualities are blended admirably together; -the richness never burdens the idea, the sweetness never enfeebles it, and the strength never exaggerates it; but all contribute to illumine, to beautify, to ennoble it,— to invest it with clearness, splendor, and force, as the form of a Greek god came from the visioned conception of Phidias.
With Bacon-as with most minds of his order. - memory was likewise remarkable. It was full, large, and of extreme retentiveness. He did not, indeed, always quote exactly, but VOL. LXXII. - 5TH S. VOL. X. NO. II. 15
this, his editors think, was not because he did not remember his author, but because it seemed to be a habit of his to modify or beautify all that took possession of his thoughts, come from what source it might. But it is not by mere quotation we are to judge the memory of Bacon, but by the vastness of the general treasures which he had there accumulated and stored. Bacon was not old Burton or Magliabecchi. What he gathered, he gathered for living use, not as dead and dried curiosities, not for vain show, but for high and generous application; his memory received and held the ample abundance of its riches as mere materials for his sublime judgment and transforming imagination, so that all that came out from it had a new and transcendent value in the stamp on it of his authority. These several powers in Bacon are never disproportionate or disunited. They are all of a measure, and all act in harmony. There is not a strong memory to overtax a weak intellect, nor an active intellect rendered incompetent by a sluggish memory, nor an aspiring imagination which there is no sufficiency of intellect and memory to supply or to sustain. In Bacon, intellect, imagination, and memory were all co-ordinated, all coequal, all co-related in the unity of a great mind.
If we regard faculty concretely in its work, we see how manifold it was in Bacon's activity and writings. We have already in another form indicated this point. At the risk of repetition, we venture here to state it more distinctly. For instance, Bacon had the Historic faculty. He had all those qualities that belong to a great historian, — insight into human nature, judgment of character, full capacity to estimate both contemplative and active life, equal capacity for meditation and affairs, large knowledge of men and times, facility and nobleness of style. That Bacon inclined to the composition of history we observe by the frequent expression of his intention to take up some department of it, by several fragments scattered through his writings, and by the narrative of one complete reign, that of Henry the Seventh. This work has been severely criticised, both as to its value as a history and as to the motives of its author. It was written in the beginning of its author's evil day, - when age came on him with quickening pace, and when he was
bending under depression, disgrace, and sorrow.
ments were restrained; he had small opportunity for the consultation of authorities; his materials, in all but his memory and his genius, were meagre; yet he has brought into life such a picture of the man - Henry, seventh of that name, king of England as stands for him ever since, and will stand for him while tradition lives, and while history is read. The character has been repeated by every subsequent writer, and will always continue to be the standard likeness. Bacon writes as if he had lived in the presence of Henry, yet Henry had been more than fifty years dead when Bacon was born; and Bacon delineates the time of Henry as vividly as he does the man. We are not rash, then, in the inference that Bacon could have taken rank in the highest order of historians.
We might in this manner specify many other faculties, but we will only mention one more. The poetic faculty Bacon had in full measure. He thinks in images, but in images. that do not obscure, while they color, his ideas. His mind was not colorlessly transparent. It was not irradiated with that "dry light" which Bacon himself so often and so much praises. On the contrary, his mind was resplendent with gorgeous hues, not, indeed, in confused and glaring masses, but all duly softened and attempered, throwing lustrous beauty over the forms which reflected them. His mind was as full of music as of beauty. His thoughts seem to flow with the measure of a song, and to come with lyric sweetness into words. And this is not occasional, or by fits and starts, but as an ever-present life, spontaneous, unconscious, unpurposed. Nor is the poetic element in Bacon's writings merely here and there. It is interfused throughout them, as a spirit and a soul. It is hardly absent even from the technicalities of his legal disquisitions. Bacon's is, therefore, perhaps the richest prose in English. Jeremy Taylor's may equal it in fancy and excel it in tenderness, but is inferior to it in clearness of meaning, vigor of conception, and compactness of imagination. Edmund Burke's is grand and far-reaching, but it has not the concrete luxuriance of Bacon's, nor its brilliant, varied, definitive picturesqueness. Bacon wrote a few verses, but his skill was not in the metrical
forms of the poet; his power lay in the possession of a poet's soul; not in metrical numbers, but in force of inspiration. His interpretations of ancient myths and fables are a series of exquisite poems, with the finest mixture of subtilty, fancy, and imagination. His Essays are not more replete with wisdom, penetration, wide and profound observing, ethical and grave reflection, than they are with the feeling and idealism of poetry. What a grand and lofty song in prose-prose only as to form is the Essay on "Masks and Triumphs." What noble and delightful descriptive poems are the Essays "Of Building" and "Of Gardens." For beauty and imagery they cannot be equalled, except by Shakespeare, of whose genius they are entirely worthy.
These are only a few out of the numerous instances that might be given. It was in the spirit of a poet, as well as in that of a thinker, Bacon philosophized. Indeed, it may well be doubted whether any man can be truly and completely a philosopher without the spirit of a poet. Bare intellect discovers nothing, and has nothing revealed to it; because bare thinking is void of life, and can therefore neither receive life nor impart it. It was probably the strength of the poetic element in Bacon which gave him the aversion that he had to syllogistic reasoning and metaphysical analysis. These of themselves can afford no true knowledge. The understanding alone does not apprehend true knowledge, for it is incomplete except in union with sympathy and imagination. This union, as we have said, was admirable in the philosophical genius of Bacon. Truth was not merely the object of speculation with him, but of passion; he not only examined, but he loved nature. He had a powerful sense of beauty, so truth and nature became to him in the highest degree beautiful. It was in the spirit of a poet, as well as of a thinker, that he studied humanity, and contemplated man in all his various aspects and circumstances. It was in the spirit of a poet, as well as of a thinker, that he read history, and that he reflected on the destinies of empires and the solemn march of ages. It was in the spirit of a poet, as well as of a thinker, that he took a survey of all recorded experience, sought after its secrets, and tested its value. It was in the spirit of a poet, as well as of a
thinker, and in the love that both in common have for harmony, he desired to supply mankind with a sure method of inquiry and a certain standard of useful discovery. It was in the spirit of a poet, as well as of a thinker, that he looked around on the universe, with grand sensibility to its visible glories, but learnedly curious also after its hidden mysteries. It was in the spirit of a poet, as well as of a thinker, that, not content with appearance and outward show, he sought for modes of infallible divination which must force phenomena to yield up the meanings they concealed, that he sought, with ardor such as only poets feel, to find the heart and life and substance of reality. It was in the spirit of a poet, as well as of a thinker, that he gave to Philosophy a voice of music, and taught her to speak in such a dialect of surpassing eloquence as only Plato had done before him, and such as since remains unequalled.
The last quality in the genius of Bacon to which we will refer is its grand magisterial calmness. Bacon has nothing of the polemic. To dispute or to discuss seemed utterly beneath him. In the concerns of intellect, or even ethics, his manner is entirely royal. He questions and examines, but he holds no controversy. He looks over the whole field of knowledge, and then, as a sovereign ruler in the empire of thought and mind, he issues his proclamation. He does not argue, but affirm; he makes his statements, but in a way which implies that he challenges no contradiction and will pay no attention to objections. Let those who will contradict; let those who care object; that is their affair; it is none of his: he has weightier business in hand, business that demands all his attention, and must have it. In this there is no arrogance. Every great intellect is simple, and in its sphere modest. There are indeed minds of extraordinary power which seem to belie this assertion. But they are minds that never reach the highest level of speculation, or the sobriety that belongs to the calmer regions of philosophy. They are usually minds that have strong passion in their power, and that mostly deal with the actual life of men. They are often impatient, even angry, with what they consider the meanness and the folly of the world; they thence look down on the multitude and its