« PreviousContinue »
verse to common sense, or popular reason, as religion, or more. Which kind of knowledge, except it be delivered with strange advantages of eloquence and power, may be likely to appear and disclose a little to the world, and straight to vanish and shut again. So that time seemeth to be of the nature of a river or flood, that bringeth down to us that which is light and blown up, and sinketh and drowneth that which is solid and grave. So he saw well, that both in the state of religion, and in the administration of learning, and in common opinion, there were many and continual stops and traverses to the course of invention.
9. He thought also, that the invention of works and farther possibility was prejudiced in a more special manner than that of speculative truth; for besides the impediments common to both, it hath br itself been notably hurt and discredited by the vain Iiromises and pretences of alchemy, magic, astrology, and such other arts, which, as they now pass, hold much more of imagination and belief, than of sense and demonstration. But fo use the poet's language, men ought to have remembered, that although Ixion of a cloud in the likeness of Juno begat Centaurs and Chimeras, yet Jupiter also of the true Juno begat Vulcan and Hebe. Neither is it just to deny credit to the gTeatness of the acts of Alexander, because the like or more strange have been feigned of an Amadis or an Arthur, or other fabulous worthies. But though this in true reason should be, and that men ought not to make a confusion of unbelief; yet he saw well it could not otherwise be in
event, but that experience of untruth had made access to truth more difficult, and that the ignominy of vanity hath abated all greatness of mind.
10. He thought also, there was found in the mind of man an affection naturally bred and fortified, and farthered by discourse and doctrine, which did pervert the true proceeding towards active and operative knowledge. This was a false estimation, that it should be as a diminution to the mind of man to be much conversant in experiences and particulars, subject to sense, and bound in matter, and which are laborious to search, ignoble to meditate, harsh to deliver, illiberal to practise, infinite as is supposed in number, and no ways accommodate to the glory of arts. This opinion or state of mind received much credit and strength by the school of Plato, who thinking that particulars rather revived the notions, or excited the faculties of the mind, than merely informed; and having mingled his philosophy with superstition, which never favoureth the sense, extolleth too much the understanding of man in the inward light thereof. And again, Aristotle's school, which giveth the due to the sense in assertion, denieth it in practice much more than that of Plato. For we see the schoolmen, Aristotle's successors, which were utterly ignorant of history, rested only upon agitation of wit; whereas Plato giveth good example of inquiry by induction and view of particulars; though in such a wandering manner as is of no force or fruit. So that he saw well, that the supposition of the sufficiency of man's mind hath lost the means thereof.
CALORE ET FRIGORE.
The sun-beams hot to sense.
The moon-beams not hot, but rather conceived to have a quality of cold, for that the greatest colds are noted to be about the full, and the greatest heats about the change. Query.
The beams of the stars have no sensible heat by themselves; but are conceived to have an augmentative heat of the sun-beams by the instance following. The same climate arctic and antarctic are observed to differ in cold, viz. that the antarctic is the more cold, and it is manifest the antarctic hemisphere is thinner planted with stars.
The heats observed to be greater in July than in June; at which time the sun is nearest the greatest fixed stars, viz. Cor Leonis, Cauda Leonis, Spica Virginis, Sirius, Canicula.
The conjunction of any two of the three highest planets noted to cause great heats.
Comets conceived by some to be as well causes as effects of heat, much more the stars.
The sun-beams have greater heat when they are more perpendicular than when they are more oblique; as appeareth in difference of regions, and the difference of the times of summer and winter in the same region; and chiefly in the difference of the hours of mid-day, mornings, evenings in the same day.
The heats more extreme in July and August than in May or June, commonly imputed to the stay and continuance of heat.
The heats more extreme under the tropics than under the line: commonly imputed to the stay and continuance of heat, because the sun there doth as it were double a cape.
The heats more about three or four of clock than at noon; commonly imputed to the stay and continuance of heat.
The sun noted to be hotter when it shineth forth between clouds, than when the sky is open and serene.
The middle region of the air hath manifest effects of cold, notwithstanding locally it be nearer the sun, commonly imputed to antiperistasis, assuming that the beams of the sun are hot either by approach or by reflexion, and that falleth in the middle term between both ; or if, as some conceive, it be only by reflexion, then the cold of that region resteth chiefly upon distance. The instances showing the cold of that region, are the snows which descend, the hails which descend, and the snows and extreme colds which are upon high mountains.
But Qu. of such mountains as adjoin to sandy vales, and not to fruitful vales, which minister no vapours; or of mountains above the region of vapours, as is reported of Olympus, where any inscription upon the ashes of the altar remained untouched of wind or dew. And note, it is also reported, that men carry up sponges with vinegar to thicken their breath, the air growing too fine for respiration, which seemeth not to stand with coldness.
The clouds make a mitigation of the heat of the sun. So doth the interposition of any body, which we term shades; but yet the nights in summer are many times as hot to the feeling of men's bodies as the days are within doors, where the beams of the sun actually beat not.
There is no other nature of heat known from the celestial bodies or from the air, but that which cometh by the sun-beams. For in the countries near the pole, we see the extreme colds end in the summer months, as in the voyage of Nova Zembla. where they could not disengage their barks from the ice, no not in July, and met with great mountains of ice, some floating, some fixed, at that time of the year, being the heart of summer.
The caves under the earth noted to be warmer in winter than in summer, and so the waters that spring from within the earth.
Great quantity of sulphur, and sometimes naturally burning after the manner of .Stna, in Iceland • the like written of Greenland, and divers other the cold countries.*
The trees in the cold countries are such as are fuller of rosin, pitch, tar, which are matters apt for fire, and the woods themselves more combustible than those in much hotter countries; as for example, fir, pine-apple, juniper: Qu. whether their trees of the same kind that ours are, as oak and ash, bear not, in the more cold countries, a wood more brittle and ready to take fire than the same kinds with us?
The sun-beams heat manifestly by reflexion, as in countries pent in with hills, upon walls or buildings, upon pavements, upon gravel more than earth, np<m arable more than grass, upon rivers if they be not very open, &c.
The uniting or collection of the sun-beams multiplied heat, as in burning-glasses, which are made thinner in the middle than on the sides, as I take it, contrary to spectacles; and the operation of them is, as I remember, first to place them between the sun and the body to be fired, and then to draw them upward towards the sun, which it is true maketh the angle of the cone sharper. But then I take it if the glass had been first placed at the same distance, to which it is after drawn, it would not have had that force, and yet that had been all one to the sharpness of the angle. Qu.
•So in that the sun's beams are hotter perpendicularly than obliquely, it may be imputed to the union of the beams, which in case of perpendicularity reflect into the very same lines with the direct; and the farther from perpendicularity the more obtuse the angle, and the greater distance between the direct beam and the reflected beam.
The sun-beams raise vapours out of the earth, and when they withdraw they fall back in dews.
The sun-beams do many times scatter the mists which are in the mornings.
The sun-beams cause the divers returns of the herbs, plants, and fruits of the earth; for we see in lemon-trees and the like, that there is coming on at once fruit ripe, fruit unripe, and blossoms; which may show that the plant worketh to put forth continually, were it not for the variations of the accesses and recesses of the sun, which call forth and put back.
The excessive heat of the sun doth wither and destroy vegetables, as well as the cold doth nip and blast them.
The heat or beams of the sun doth take away 'he smell of flowers, specially such as are of a milder
The beams of the sun do disclose summer flowers, as the pimpernel, marigold, and almost all flowers rise, for they close commonly morning and evening, or in overcast weather, and open in the brightness of the sun; which is but imputed to dryness and moisture, which doth make the beams heavy or erect; and not to any other propriety in the sunbeams; so they report not only a closing but a
* No doubt but infinite power of the heat of the sun in cold entries, though it be not to the analogy of men, and fruits,
bending or inclining in the heliotropium and calendula. Qu.
The sun-beams do ripen all fruits, and addeth to them a sweetness or fatness; and yet some sultry hot days overcast, are noted to ripen more than bright days.
The sun-beams are thought to mend distilled waters, the glasses being well stopped, and to make them the more virtuous and fragrant.
The sun-beams do turn wine into vinegar; but Qu. whether they would not sweeten verjuice?
The sun-beams do pall any wine or beer that is set in them.
The sun-beams do take away the lustre of any silks or arras.
There is almost no mine but lieth some depth in the earth; gold is conceived to lie highest, and in the hottest countries, yet Thracia and Hungary are cold, and the hills of Scotland have yielded gold, but in small grains or quantity.
If you set a root of a tree too deep in the ground, that root will perish, and the stock will put forth a new root nearer the superficies of the earth.
Some trees and plants prosper best in the shade: as the bayes, strawberries, some wood-flowers.
Almost all flies love the sun-beams, so do snakes; toads and worms the contrary.
The sun-beams tanneth the skin of man; and in some places turneth it to black.
The sun-beams are hardly endured by many, but cause head-ache, faintness, and with many they cause rheums; yet to aged men they are comfortable.
The sun causes pestilence, which with us rages about autumn: but it is reported in Barbary they break up about June, and rage most in tlte winter.
The heat of the sun, and of fire, and living creatures, agree in some things which pertain to vivification; as the back of a chimney will set forward an apricot-tree as well as the sun; the fire will raise a dead butterfly as well as the sun; and so will the heat of a living creature. The heat of the sun in sand will hatch an egg. Qu.
The heat of the sun in the hottest countries nothing so violent as that of fire, no not scarcely so hot to the sense as that of a living creature.
The sun, a fountain of light as well as heat. The other celestial bodies manifest in light, and yet nan constat whether all borrowed, as in the moon; but obscure in heat.
The southern and western wind with us is the warmest, whereof the one bloweth from the sun, the other from the sea; the northern and eastern the more cold. Qu. whether in the coast of Florida, or at Brasil, the east wind be not the warmest, and the west the coldest; and so beyond the antarctic tropic, the southern wind the coldest.
The air useth to be extreme hot before thunders.
The sea and air ambient appeareth to be hotter than that at land; for in the northern voyages two or three degrees farther at the open sea, they find less ice than two or three degrees more south near land: but Qu. for that may be by reason of the shores and shallows.
The snows dissolve fastest upon the sea-coasts, yet the winds are counted the bitterest from the sea, and such as trees will bend from. Qu.
The streams or clouds of brightness which appear in the firmament, being such through which the stars may be seen, and shoot not, but rest, are signs of heat.
The pillars of light, which are so upright, and do commonly shoot and vary, are signs of cold; but both these are signs of drought.
The air when it is moved is to the sense colder; as in winds, fannings, ventilabra.
The air in things fibrous, as fleeces, furs, &c. warm; and those stuffs to the feeling warm.
The water to man's body seemeth colder than the air; and so in summer, in swimming it seemeth at the first going in; and yet after one hath been in a while, at the cometh forth again, the air seemeth colder than the water.
The snow more cold to the sense than water, and the ice than snow; and they have in Italy means to keep snow and ice for the cooling of their drinks: Qu. whether it be so in froth in respect of the liquor?
Baths of hot water feel hottest at the first going
The frost dew which we see in hoar frost, and in the rimes upon trees or the like, accounted more mortifying cold than snow; for snow cherisheth the ground, and any thing sowed in it; the other biteth and killeth.
Stone and metal exceeding cold to the feeling more than wood: yea, more than jet or amber, or horn, which are no less smooth.
The snow is ever in the winter season, but the hail, which is more of the nature of ice, is ever in the summer season; whereupon it is conceived, that as the hollows of the earth are warmest in the winter, so that region of the air is coldest in the summer; as if they were a fugue of the nature of either from the contrary, and a collecting itself to an union, and so to a farther strength.
So in the shades under trees, in the summer, which stand in an open field, the shade noted to be colder than in a wood.
Cold effecteth congelation in liquors, so as they do consist and hold together, which before did run.
Cold breaketh glasses, if they be close stopped, in frost, when the liquor freezeth within.
Cold in extreme maketh metals, that are dry and brittle, cleft and crack, ^raque dissiliunt; so of pots of earth and glass.
Cold maketh bones of living creatnres more fragile.
Cold maketh living creatures to swell in the joints, and the blood to clot, and turn more blue.
Bitter frosts do make all drinks to taste more dead and flat.
Cold maketh the arteries and flesh more asper and rough.
Cold causes rheums and distillations by compressing the brain, and laxes by like reason.
Cold increases appetite in the stomach, and willingness to stir.
Cold maketh the fire to scald and sparkle.
Paracelsus reporteth, that if a glass of wine be set upon a terras in a bitter frost, it will leave some liquor unfrozen in the centre of the glass, which excelleth spiritus vini drawn by fire.
Cold in Muscovy, and the like countries, causes those parts which are voidest of blood, as the nose, the ears, the toes, the fingers, to mortify and rot; especially if you come suddenly to fire, after you have been in the air abroad, they are sure to moulder and dissolve. They use for remedy, as is said, washing in snow water.
If a man come out of a bitter cold suddenly to the fire, he is ready to swoon, or be overcome.
So contrariwise at Nova Zembla, when they opened their doors at times to go forth, he that opened the door was in danger to be overcome.
The quantity of fish in the cold countries, Norway, &c. very abundant.
The quantity of fowl and eggs laid in the cliffs in great abundance.
In Nova Zembla they found no beasts but bean and foxes, whereof the bears gave over to be seen about September, and the foxes began.
Meat will keep from putrifying longer in frosty weather, than at other times.
In Iceland they keep fish, by exposing it to the cold, from putrifying without salt.
The nature of man endureth the colds in the countries of Scricfinnia, Biarmia, Lappia, Iceland, Greenland; and that not by perpetual keeping in stoves in the winter time, as they do in Russia: but contrariwise, their chief fairs and intercourse is written to be in the winter, because the ice evens and levelleth the passages of waters, plashes, &c.
A thaw after a frost doth greatly rot and mellow the ground.
Extreme cold hurteth the eyes, and causeth blindness in many beasts, as is reported.
The cold maketh any solid substance, as wood, stone, metal, put to the flesh, to cleave to it, and to pull the flesh after it, and so put to any cloth that is moist.
Cold maketh the pilage of beasts more thick and long, as foxes of Muscovy, sables, &c.
Cold make the pilage of most beasts incline to grayness or whiteness, as foxes, bears, and so the plumage of fowls; and maketh also the crests of cocks and their feet white, as is reported.
Extreme cold will make nails leap out of the walls, and out of locks, and the like.
Extreme cold maketh leather to bestiff like horn.
In frosty weather the stars appear clearest and most sparkling.
In the change from frost to open weather, or from open weather to frosts, commonly great mists.
In extreme colds any thing never so little which arresteth the air maketh it to congeal; as we see in cobwebs in windows, which is one of the least and weakest threads that is, and yet drops gather about it like chains of pearl.
So in frosts, the inside of glass windows gathereth a dew; Qu. if not more without.
Qu. Whether the sweating of marble and stones be in frost, or towards rain.
Oil in time of frost gathereth to a substance, as of tallow; and it is said to sparkle some time, 30 as it giveth a light in the dark.
The countries which lie covered with snow, have a hastier maturation of all grain than in other countries, all being within three months, or thereabouts.
Qu. It is said, that compositions of honey, as mead, do ripen, and are most pleasant in the great colds.
The frosts with us are casual, and not tied to any months, so as they are not merely caused by the recess of the sun, but mixed with some inferior caoses. In the inland of the northern countries, as in Russia, the weather for the three or four months of November, December, January, February, is constant, viz. clear and perpetual frost, without snows or rains.
There is nothing in our region, which, by approach of a matter hot, will not take heat by transition or excitation.
There is nothing hot here with us but is in a kind of consumption, if it carry heat in itself; for all fired things are ready to consume; chafed things are ready to fire; and the heat of men's bodies needeth aliment to restore.
The transition of heat is without any imparting of substance, and yet remaineth after the body heated is withdrawn: for it is not like smells, for they leave some airs or parts; not like light, for that abideth not when the first body is removed; not unlike to the motion of the loadstone, which is lent without adhesion of substance, for if the iron be filed where it was rubbed, yet it will draw or turn