One main object of this volume is to set forth the power, beauty, wealth, and wit of language that Francis Bacon possessed, ever since Dr. Samuel Johnson refreshed the English language with sparkling drops of the future when he said: “A Dictionary of the English language might be compiled from Bacon’s works alone.” And as the quaint old French essayist, Montaigne, has said: “The flowers I have gathered are from others; the string that ties them together is mine own.” A string to which the author ascribes great worth to be offered to the world of literature.
One main object of this volume is to set forth the power, beauty, wealth, and wit of language that Francis Bacon possessed, ever since Dr. Samuel Johnson refreshed the English language with sparkling drops of the future when he said: “A Dictionary of the English language might be compiled from Bacon’s works alone.” And as the quaint old French essayist, Montaigne, has said: “The flowers I have gathered are from others; the string that ties them together is mine own.” A string to which the author ascribes great worth to be offered to the world of literature. Spedding, in his “History and Plan” of Works, Vol. I., tells the reader, “Bacon’s works were all published separately, and never collected into a body by himself; and though he had determined, not long before his death, to distribute them into consecutive volumes, the order in which they were to succeed each other was confessedly irregular; a volume of moral and political writings being introduced between the first and second parts of the Instauratio Magna, quite out of place, merely because he had it ready at the time.” And so in a likewise manner, this work may be seen as bringing together a collection of Bacon’s works, phrases, comments, statements, his era that lived among the cobwebs of the ancient Greeks within the domineering works of the Romans, and upon the secretive literature of the ancient Alchemists. The following Parts were decided to be included: Part I. Words and phrases in English and Latin that was used by Bacon and may easily be referred back to his works derived from, that remain not so familiar in our modern language or have possibly changed in meaning. This was an important intention that would be supplementary help to students on their studies of Bacon, or, of other authors of the era that would have been quoted in other works of that age or even at an earlier age than Bacon’s. There must be a sad mistake somewhere if Part I., was abandoned so quickly. The name of Shakespeare admonishes us to state the fact, none more memorable in the history of English letters, that contemporary with the Bard of Avon, in the era of Elizabeth and James, flourished a large number of writers, men of very great genius. The works of all these writers have commanded a good deal of attention, to the great advantage of our speech, their diction is so light, vigorous, and of such ivory polish. Many years ago, in the late 1800’s, a sermon came from an eloquent young Methodist minister on Abraham’s offering up of Isaac, in which were many impressive paragraphs; yet only one was in the very least remembered. Speaking of Isaac as an only son, he said: “Parents are aware that the only child in a family is apt to get a little bit spoil’d.” These artless words of the hearth and homestead, “a little bit spoil’d,” shall never be forgotten as one reads the writings of the age. They brought the speaker into our home and down to our level; they made the whole so life-like. Such precisely is often an effect of mid-cut, as when “don’t” is used in today’s language. Of such words, that have built the phrases of the times, Part I., embodies from Bacon’s writ. This would mean quite simply, that the Elizabethan spelling has been secured in many phrases and should be seen with more interest to the reader to continue than to abandon. Part II. In this section, it was felt the need to contain all persons referred to in Bacon’s works, speeches, and letters who were his acquaintances, friends, or companions. They are given a well deserved synoptic yet understandable biography. This way, all references noted to persons mentioned by Bacon would be well understood to why he referred to them, and under what circumstances they surrounded his lifestyle. In continuation to these synoptic biographies, are their works either in a detailed account or in a synoptic form after each individual biography. Where no additional information is added to those works, is due to the lack of historical records, which is believed to be more and more noted to modern researchers on the history of those times and especially when compiling such a volume as this one. Part III. In this part it seemed interestingly in want in modern English literature the important historical facts with references that either had imminent effect on Bacon or had directly influenced historical events of the time. This portion of work also involves the Authorship Controversy that originated during the 1800’s. The entrance of this controversy into this volume was inevitable; and if we approach it as Cicero says, that “if a poem is a speaking picture, a picture should be a silent poem”, then we probably shall conclude Shakespeare is Bacon or Bacon is Shakespeare. Much evidence has been included in surmising this statement, and the conclusion to the fact shall be left to the Reader. Part IV. Contained here is the mention of all Bacon’s works that we have witnessed from the publications of histrionic authors who brought them forward for public reading. In the author’s humble opinion of this work, such a list would have been found in the eighteenth century quite abundantly among periodicals or articles, yet in our day and age, it is scarcely recognized by many, excluding Baconians, if Bacon wrote anything other than his histrionic Essays. His works are given in alphabetical order, date of publication, publishers’ name, and if the work was reprinted, the date is duly given and if the work was translated or not. In many titles, the Elizabethan spelling has been kept and has been changed only if this did not interfere with the original meaning of the text. Part V., and VI., These two sections hold the most important letters that Bacon wrote during his lifetime; Part V., in chronological order, and Part VI., undated.
Daughter of a retired British Official, the author resides in Greece and is a devoted Baconian.