Full text: Bacon, Francis: Sylva sylvarum

Century II. which being well extended, gathered equality; as a Bladder that is
wrinckled, if it be extended, becometh ſmooth. The extenſion is always,
more in Tones, than in Speech; therefore the inward voice or whiſper,
can never give a Tone. And in ſinging, there is (manifeſtly) a greater
working and labor of the Throat, than in ſpeaking; as appeareth in the
thruſting out, or drawing in of the Chin, when we ſing.



The Humming of Bees is an unequal buzzing, and is conceived by ſome
of the Ancients, not to come forth at their Mouth, but to bean inward
Sound; but (it may be) it is neither, but from the motion of their Wings; for it is not heard, but when they ſtir.



All Metals quenchedin Water, give a ſibillation or hiſſing ſound (which
hath an affinity with the Let er Z.) notwithſtanding the Sound be created
between the Water or Vapor, and the Air. Seething alſo, if there be but
ſmall ſtore of Water in a Veſſel, giveth a hiſſing ſound; but boyling in a
full Veſſel, givetha bubbling ſound, drawing ſomewhat near to the Cocks
uſed by Children.



Tryal would be made, whether the Inequality, or interchange of the
Medium, will not produce an Inequality of Sound; as if three Bells were
made one within another, and Air betwixt each; and then the outermoſt
Bell were chimed with a Hammer, how the Sound would differ from a
ſimple Bell. So likewiſe takea Plate of Braſs, and a Plank of Wood, and
joyn them cloſe together, and knock upon one of them, and ſee if they do
not give an unequal Sound. So make two or three Partitions of Wood in
a Hogſhead, with holes or knots in them; and mark the difference of their
ſound, from the ſound of an Hogſhead, without ſuch partitions.



IT is evident, that the Percuſſion of the greater quantity of Air, cauſeth
the baſer Sound; and the leſs quantity, the more trebble Sound. The
Percuſſion of the greater quantity of Air, is produced by the greatneſs of
the Body percuſſing; by the Latitude of the Concave, by which the Sound
paſſeth, and by the Longitude of the ſame Concave. Therefore weſee, that
a Baſe-ſtring is greater than a Trebble, a Baſe-pipehath a greater bore than
a Trebble: And in Pipes, and the like, the lower the Note holes be, and the
further off from the Mouth of the Pipe, the more Baſe ſound they yield; and the nearer the Mouth, the more Trebble. Nay more, if you ſtrike an
entire Body, as an Andiron of Braſs, at the top it maketh a more Trebble
ſound, and at the bottom a Baſer.


in Conſort,
touching the
more Trebble,
and the more
Baſe Tones or

It is alſo evident, that the ſharperor quicker Percuſſion of Air, cauſeth
the more Trebble ſound; and the ſlower or heavier, the more Baſe ſound. So weſee in Strings, the more they are wound up and ſtrained (and thereby
give a more quick ſtart back) he more Trebble is the ſound; and the ſlacker
they are, or leſs wound up, the Baſer is the ſound. And therefore a bigger
String more ſtrained, and a leſſer String leſs ſtrained, may fall into the ſame



Children, Women, Eunuchs, have more ſmall and ſhrill Voices than Men; The reaſon is, not for that Men have greater heat, which may make the
voice ſtronger, (for the ſtrength of a Voice or Sound, doth make a difference
in the loudneſs or ſoftneſs, but not in the Tone) but from the dilatation of
the Organ, which (it is true) is likewiſe cauſed by heat; but the cauſe of
changing the voice at the years of puberty, is moſt obſcure. Itſeemeth to be
for that, when much of the moiſture of the Body, which did beforeirregate


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