Full text: Bacon, Francis: Sylva sylvarum

Century III. ther there be any ſuch reſilience in Eccho’s (that is, Whether a Ma [?] n ſhall
hear better, if he ſtand aſide the Body repercuſſing, than iſ he ſtand where
he ſpeaketh, or any where in a right Line between) may betried; Tryal like-
wiſe would be made, by ſtanding nearer the place of repercuſſing, than he
that ſpeaketh; and again, by ſtanding further off, than he that ſpeaketh, and
ſo knowledge would be taken, whether Eccho’s, as well as Original Sounds,
be not ſtron geſt near hand.



There be many places, where you ſhall hear a number of Eccho’s one
after another; and it is, when there is variety of Hills or Woods, ſome nearer,
ſome ſurther off: So that the return from the further, being laſt created, will
be likewiſe laſt heard.



As the Voice goeth round, as well towards the back, as towards the
front of him that ſpeaketh; ſo likewiſe doth the Eccho, for you have many
Back-eccho’s to the place where you ſtand.



To make an Eccho that will report three, or four, or five words
dinſtinctly, it is requiſite, that the Body repercuſſing be a good diſtance
off: For if it be near, and yet not ſo near, as to make a Concurrent
Eccho, it choppeth with you upon the ſudden. It is requifite likewiſe,
that the Air be not much pent: For Air, at great diſtance, pent, work-
eth the ſame effect with Air at large, in a ſmall diſtance. And there-
ſore in the Tryal of Speaking in the Well, though the Well was deep,
the Voice came back ſuddenly, and would bear the report but of two



From Eccho’s upon Eccho’s, there is a rare inſtance thereof in a
place, which I will now exactly deſcribe. It is ſome Three or four
Miles from Paris, near a Town called Pont-Carenton; and ſome Bird-
bolt ſhot or more from the River of Sean. The Room is a Chappel,
or ſmall Church; the Walls all ſtanding, both at the ſides, and at the
ends; two rows of Pillars after the manner of Iſles of Churches, alſo
ſtanding; the Roof all open, not ſo much as any Embowment near
any of the Walls left. There was againſt every Pillar, a ſtack of Bil-
lets above a Mans height, which the Watermen, that bring Wood
down the Sean, in Stacks, and not in Boats, laid there (as it ſeemeth)
for their eaſe. Speaking at the one end, I did hear it return the Voice
Thirteen ſeveral times; and I have heard of others, that it would re-
turn Sixteen times; for I was there about three of the Clock in the After-
noon; and it is beſt, (as all other Eccho’s are) in the Evening. It is
manifeſt, that it is not Eccho’s from ſeveral places, but a toſſing of the
Voice, as a Ball too and fro; like to Reflexions in Looking-Glaſſes; where
if you place one Glaſs before, and another behinde, you thall ſee the Glaſs
behinde with the Image, within the Glaſs before; and again, the Glaſs
before in that: And divers ſuch Super-Reflexions, till the Species ſpeciei at
laſt die: For it is every return weaker, and more ſhady. In like manner,
the Voice in that Chappel, createth Speciem ſpeciei, and maketh ſucceeding
Super-Reflexions; for it melteth by degrees, and every Reflexion is
weaker than the former: So that, if you ſpeak three words, it will (per-
haps) ſome three times report you the whole three words; and then the
two latter words for ſometimes, and then the laſt word alone for ſome-
times, ſtill fading and growing weaker. And whereas in Eccho’s of
one return, it is much to hear Four or five words. In this Eccho of
ſo many Returns, upon the matter, you hear above Twenty words for



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