Full text: Bacon, Francis: Sylva sylvarum

Both of them do receive and carry exquiſite, and accurate differences; as of Colours, Figures, Motions, Diſtances, in Viſibles; and of Articulate
Voices, Tones, Songs, and Quaverings, in Audibles.



Both of them in their Vertue and Working, do not appear to emit any
Corporal Subſtance into their Mediums, or the Orb of their Vertue; neither
again to riſe or ſtir any evident Local Motion in their Mediums as they paſs,
but onely to carry certain Spiritual Species. The perfect knowledge of the
cauſe whereof, being hitherto ſcarcely attained, we ſhall ſearch and handle
in due place.



Both of them ſeem not to generate or produce any other effect in Na-
ture, but ſuch as appertaineth to their proper Objects and Senſes, and are
otherwiſe barren.



But both of them in their own proper action, do work three manifeſt
effects. The firſt, in that the ſtronger pieces drowneth the leſſer: As the
light of the Sun, the light of a Gloworm, the report of an Ordnance, the
Voice. The ſecond, in that an Object of ſurcharge or exceſs, deſtroyeth the
Senſe: As the light of the Sun the eye, a violent ſound (near the Ear) the
Hearing. The third, in that both of them will be reverberate: As in Mir-
rors, and in Eccho’s.



Neither of them doth deſtroy or hinder the Species of the other, al-
though they encounter in the ſame Medium: As Light or Colour hinder not
ſound, nor è contrà.



Both of them affect the Senſe in Living Creatures, and yield Objects of
Pleaſure and Diſlike; yet nevertheleſs, the Objects of them do alſo (if it
be well obſerved) affect and work upon dead things; namely ſuch, as have
ſome conformity with the Organs of the two Senſes: As Viſibles work up-
on a Looking-glaß, which is like the Pupil of the Eye; and Audibles upon the
places of Eccho, which reſemble, in ſome ſort, the cavern and ſtructure of
the Ear.



Both of them do diverſly work, as they have their Medium diverſly
diſpoſed. So a Trembling Medium (as ſmoak) maketh the object ſeem to trem-
ble; and Riſing or Falling Medium (as Winds) maketh the Sounds to riſe or



To both, the Medium, which is the moſt propitious and conducible, is
Air; For Glaſs or Water, & c. are not compairable.



In both of them, where the object is fine and accurate, it conduceth
much to have the Senſe intentive, and erect; inſomuch, as you contract
youreye, when you would ſee ſharply, and erect your ear, when you would
hear attentively; which in Beaſts [?] that have ears moveable, is moſt



The Beams of Light, when they are multiplied and conglomerate,
generate heat; which is a different action, from the action of Sight: And
the Multiplication and Conglomeration of Sounds, doth generate an ex-
tream Rarefaction of the Air; which is an action materiate, differing from
the action of Sound. If it betrue (which is anciently reported) that Birds,
with great ſhouts, have faln down.



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