Full text: Bacon, Francis: Sylva sylvarum

Natural Hiſtory; or from the conſtitution of the Womb. For the former, thoſe that are longer
in coming to their maturity or growth, are longer in the Womb, as is chiefly
ſeen in Men; and ſo Elephants, which are long in the Womb, are long time
in coming to their full growth. But in moſt other Kinds, the conſtitution of
the Womb (that is, the hardneſs or dryneſs thereof) is concurrent with the
former cauſe. Forthe Colt hath about four years of growth, and ſo the Fawn,
and ſo the Calf; but Whelps, which come to their growth (commonly) with-
in three quarters of a year, are but nine weeks in the Womb. As for Birds, as
there is leſs diverfity amongſt them in the time of their bringing forth, ſo
there is leſs diverſity in the time of their growth, moſt of them coming to
their growth within a twelve-moneth.



Some Creatures bring forth many young ones at a Burthen; as Bitches,
Hares, Coneys, & c. ſome (ordinarily) but one; as Women, Lioneſſes, & c. This may be cauſed, either by the quantity of Sperm required to the pro-
ducing one of that Kind; which if leſs be required, may admit greater num-
ber; if more, fewer: Or by the Partitions and Cells of the Womb, which
may ſever the Sperm.



THere is no doubt but Light by Refraction will ſhew greater, as well as
things coloured; for like as a ſhilling in the bottom of the Water will
ſhew greater, ſo will a Candle in a Lanthorn in the bottom of the Water. I
have heard of a practice, that Gloworms in Glaſſes were put in the Waterto
makethe Fiſh come. But I am not yet informed, whether when a Diver
diveth, having his eyes open, and ſwimmeth upon his back, whether (I ſay)
he ſeeth things in the Air, greater or leſs. For it is manifeſt, that when the
eye ſtandeth in the finer medium, and the object is in the groſſer, things ſhew
greater, but contrariwiſe, when the eye is placed in the groſſer medium, and
the object in the finer, how it worketh I know not.


in Conſott,
Species viſible.

It would be well boulted out, whether great Refractions may not be
made upon Reflexions, as well as upon direct beams. For example, we ſee,
that take an empty Baſon, put an Angel of Gold, or what you will into it; then go ſo far from the Baſon till you cannot ſee the Angel, becauſe it is not
in a right Line; then fill the Baſon with Water, and you ſhall ſee it out of
his place, becauſe of the Reflexion. To proceed therefore, put a Looking-
glaſs into a Baſon of Water; I ſuppoſe you ſhall not ſee the Image in a right
Line, or at equal Angles, but aſide. I know not whether this Experiment may
not be extended ſo, as you might ſee the Image, and not the Glaſs; which
for beauty and ſtrangeneſs were a fine proof, for then you ſhall ſee the Image
like a Spirit in the Air. As for example, if there be a Ciſtern or Pool of Water,
you ſhall place over againſt it a picture of the Devil, or what you will, ſo as
you do not ſee the Water, then put a Looking glaſs in the Water: Now if
you can ſee the Devils picture aſide, not ſeeing the Water, it will look like a
Devil indeed. They have an old tale in Oxford, That Fryer Bacon walked be-
tween two Steeples; which was thought to be done by Glafſes, when he
walked upon the Ground.



AWeighty Body put into Motion, is more eaſily impelled then at firſt
when it reſteth. The cauſe is, partly becauſe Motion doth diſcuſs the
Torpour of ſolid Bodies, which beſide their Motion of Gravity, have in them
a Natural Appetite not to move at all; and partly, becauſe a Body that reſt-
eth doth get, by the reſiſtance of the Body upon which it reſteth, a ſtronger


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