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Biography of Francis Bacon


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Bacon, Francis. Lord Verulam and Viscount St. Albans, one of the greatest of modern philosophers. Born in London, 1561. Entering parliament in 1593, he was knighted in 1603, and in 1613 became attorney-general and privy-councillor. The office of lord keeper was given him in 1617, and he was soon afterwards made lord chancellor. But from this time dates the beginning of his miserable fall. Complaints were made of his venality as a judge, which on inquiry by a parliamentary committee were verified; Bacon then made full confession, was deprived of his offices, fined, and imprisoned during the royal pleasure. He was ultimately pardoned, but continued to live in retirement, devoting himself to his favorite studies. The great aim of this extraordinary man was to reform the methods of philosophy; he recalls men from blindly following authority to the observation and examination of nature. His "Essays" were published in 1597, but his greatest works are the "Novum Organum" and the "De Augmentis Scientiarum." Died 1626.