Communique Styles of Francis Bacon:
the other ways of conveying
Secret Communication using Ciphers
               Six ESSAYS

Bacon 101-1. Metaphor, Allegory & Allusion
Bacon 101-2. Bacon & The Art of Discovery
Bacon 101-3. The Deep End of the Ocean
Bacon 101-4. Mapping a Miracle
Bacon 101-5. The Tempest: Finding Bacon's Discovery Device
Bacon 101-6. The Tempest as a Chess Game
                  Mather Walker
   "For as hieroglyphics were in use before writing, so were parables in use
before arguments. And even to this day, if any man would let new light in
upon the human understanding, and conquer prejudice, without raising
contests, animosities, opposition, or disturbance, he must still go in the
same path, and have recourse of the like method of allegory, metaphor,
and allusion."-Francis Bacon, preface to his Wisdom of the Ancients
Metaphor, Allegory, and Allusion
               Bacon 101-1 
At the debut of the detective story genre the brilliant but tormented 
Edgar Allan Poe penned a tale that is not without some bearing for 
understanding the mind and thought of Francis Bacon. The story was 
"The Purloined Letter". A man had stolen a letter. It was determined 
that the letter was at his home. The police made a meticulous search 
but they could not find it. Poe's detective, C. Auguste Dupin,found 
it, not hidden, but thrust among some other knickknacks in plain view. 
Dupin described his success as follows:
"There is a game of puzzles," he explained, "which is played upon a 
map. One party playing requires another to find a given word-the name 
of town, river, state, or empire-any word, in short, upon the motley 
and perplexed surface of the chart. A novice in the game generally 
seeks to embarrass his opponents by given them the most minutely 
lettered names; but the adept selects such words as stretch, in large 
characters, from one end of the chart to the other.  These, like the 
over-largely lettered signs and placards of the street, escape 
observation by dint of being excessively obvious."      
We can apply this to the case of Francis Bacon. Many of his 20 or so
biographers have not gained the slightest understanding of what he was 
about. On the surface this seems somewhat puzzling. Bacon's writing 
style is a marvel. His incredibly controlled prose is limpid as the 
purest crystal. In his book, "Francis Bacon and Renaissance Prose" 
Brian Vickers says:
"It is impossible not to admire the structure of Bacon's
works. Outlines are clear and easily grasped, the argument
proceeds firmly through each section, and each topic is
covered with thoroughness and precision. There is in all the 
finished work, and even in some of the fragments, a strong
sense of unity- the organic unity of a tree and its branches-
which Coleridge perceived, and attributed partly to the unity
of the subject and partly to 'the perpetual growth and
evolution of the thoughts, one generating and explaining, and
justifying, the place of another....' But, in addition to 
this intellectual unity, this tough but relaxed control of
thought into an essentially positive, onward movement, there
is to be felt throughout Bacon's work an effective                    
organisation of the larger units of argument. The method
he uses to achieve this tight structure is seen most clearly
in the Advancement of Learning, and seems to be the
deceptively simple one of dividing up the topic into its
main heads, subdividing within these, and the following
the argument along its respective branches."
How is it that his biographers missed the boat? The answer is that 
Bacon, a past master in his understanding how the human mind works, 
deliberately constructed his writings in such a manner as to select his 
readers. In his description of ciphers in the Augmentis he said:
"There are several kinds of ciphers, as the simple, those
mixed with non-significants, those consisting of two kinds
of characters, wheel-ciphers, key-ciphers, word-ciphers, etc.
There are three properties required in ciphers; viz., 1. That
they be easy to write and read; 2. That they be trust and
Undecipherable; and 3. If possible, clear of suspicious.  
For if a letter should come into the hands of such as have
power over the writer or receiver, though the cipher itself
be trusty and impossible to decipher, it is still subject
to examination, and question, unless there be no room to
suspect or examine it."
In his "Valerius Terminus" Bacon said the discretion anciently observed 
"of publishing in a manner whereby it shall not be to the capacity nor 
taste of all, but shall as it were single and adopt his reader, is not 
to be laid aside". By saying this he was stating quite candidly his 
intention of writing in such a manner as to select his readers.    
People who believe that there is something concealed in his writings 
invariably think ciphers. But that is an example of "flatland" 
thinking.  There is a little puzzle that is a good analogy for this 
type of thinking. The object of the puzzle is to form four triangles 
from six paper clips. This proves surprisingly difficult for many 
people.  The reason is people tend to address this type puzzle from two 
dimensions only.  Once they move into three dimensions the solution 
proves quite simple.
For the main thrust of his communication Bacon utilized, as he candidly stated he would, "metaphor, allegory, and allusion". He went the route of Dupin's communication that stretches from one side of the map to the other. Bacon built a metaphoric, analogue system, and extended the parts of it through the entire canvas of his writings. His is a prime example of a "top down" type system. In his Advancement of Learning he said that the best rule for the transmission of knowledge was a polished mirror wherein everything is reflected. In his system of thought he dealt with the whole as a whole and everything else had its place in relation to this whole. Bacon said:
"I am building in the human understanding a true
model of the world, such as it is in fact, not such
as a man's own reason would have it to be; a thing
which cannot be done without a very diligent dissection
and anatomy of the world."
Take this literally. Bacon was involved with building in the human 
mind a replica of the great globe - the earth itself. He was intent on 
holding the mirror up to nature, and the mirror he held up to nature 
was the human mind:
"God hath framed the mind of man as a glass capable
of the image of the universal world, joying to receive
the signature thereof as the eye is of light."
Bacon's mirror was a crystalline globe, and Bacon called his model of 
the world - The Intellectual Globe. In 1605 Bacon wrote a book titled, 
"The Advancement of Learning" in which he made a survey of all human 
learning. In 1623 he issued a revised and greatly expanded version of 
this book titled, "Of the Dignity and Advancement of Science", but 
significantly, in 1612 he produced an incomplete, revised version of 
the original 1605 book, and this book was titled, "A Description of the 
Intellectual Globe." 
In his Advancement Bacon proceeded on a metaphoric voyage on his
Intellectual Globe, beginning with the major divisions of History, 
Poetry, and Philosophy, then proceeding through the subsidiary 
divisions, and ending his voyage with:
"And now we have finished our small globe of the intellectual
world with all the exactness we could, marking out and
describing those parts of it which we find either not constantly
inhabited or sufficiently cultivated."
Bacon's great task was to rebuild all human knowledge from the 
foundation up. He called this renewal of all knowledge, "The Great 
"Whence it follows that the entire fabric of human reason
which we employ in the inquisition of nature, is badly put
together and built up, and like some magnificent structure
without any foundation.  For while men are occupied in admiring
and applauding the false powers of the mind, they pass by and
throw away those true powers, which, if it be supplied with
the proper aids and can itself be content to wait upon nature
instead of vainly affecting to overrule her, are within its
reach.  There is but one course left, therefore,-to try the
whole thing anew upon a better plan and to commence a total
reconstruction of sciences, arts, and all human knowledge,
raised upon the proper foundations."
(see Enlargement)
[Engraved title-page to Francis Bacon’s Novum Organum, published in 1620,
printed in London by ‘Bonhamum Nortonium’ (Bonham Norton) and ‘Joannem Billium’
(John Bill).The engraving was made by Simon Pass.Since this was Bacon’s first
announcement of the design of the Great Instauration, the Novum Organum had
prefixed to it a Proemium (‘Preamble’),a dedication to King James,
a general preface and a Distributio Operis (‘Distribution of the Work’)
concerning the Instauratio Magna (‘The Great Instauration’), to which this
title-page refers. The Latin motto written beneath the ship reads
‘Multi pertransibunt & augebitur scientia
(transl:‘Many shall pass through and learning shall be increased’Daniel 12)]
Bacon began his Great Instauration with an illustration depicting a 
ship sailing out beyond the gates of Hercules. This was a very 
significant component of his concept of the Intellectual Globe. The 
ancient world had its center in the Mediterranean Sea. At the western 
end of this sea the straits of Gibraltar led into that great unknown - 
the Atlantic Ocean. Legend had it that on either side of these straits 
where they had met the Atlantic Ocean had stood giant pillars of stone, 
constructed by Hercules. These pillars marked the limits of the 
ancient world. Inscribed on them were the words, NON PLUS ULTRA (no 
more beyond). To the ancients the Atlantic Ocean was the end of the 
In Bacon's time, however, ships had sailed forth beyond the Pillars 
of Hercules, and discovered a New World (America) far to the West:
"A New World beckons. Even if the breezes that reach us
from it were of far less promise and hope, Bacon was
resolved that the trial should be made."
The opening up of this New World had a far greater impact on the public 
mind of the day than the moon landing on contemporary times. This was 
no dead satellite.  In Bacon's time the situation was literally that of 
two worlds the old world centered around the Mediterranean Sea; and the 
new world beckoning outside the Mediterranean Sea, beyond the Pillars 
of Hercules, far across the Atlantic Ocean. Bacon chose PLUS ULTRA 
(More Beyond) for his motto.
"But that little vessels,like the celestial bodies,
should sail round the whole globe, is the happiness of
our age. These times, moreover, may justly use not only
plus ultra, where the ancients used non plus ultra,but
also imitabile fulmen where the ancients said non imitabile
"Not for nothing have we opposed our modern 'There is 
more beyond' to the 'Thus far and no further' of
Scientific discovery, as Bacon depicted it, was continually a sailing
voyage of discovery on a metaphoric Intellectual Globe corresponding in 
every particular to the great globe. Was there an Old World of the 
physical globe centered around the Mediterranean Sea? Very well, there 
was also an Old World of the Intellectual Globe bequeathed from 
antiquity.  Was there a New World of the physical globe out beyond the 
gates of Hercules?  Very well, there was also a New World of the 
Intellectual Globe waiting to be discovered by men when they should 
sail forth from their small Mediterranean Sea of received knowledge, 
and, guided by the Intellectual Compass would discover a New World of 
the Sciences. Certainly the world of human knowledge, of the sciences, 
had, like the physical globe, its Old and New Worlds.
"Whether or not discoveries now made had been known
to the ancients and the knowledge had been extinguished
and rekindled with the changes of human fortune, is a 
matter of no moment, just as it matters not at all
whether the New World is the old Atlantis or is now
discovered for the first time."
Within his master metaphor of The Intellectual Globe we see Bacon
describing the existing state of knowledge in his time as a tempest 
portending the shipwreck of knowledge:
"I think (judging from certain fashions which have come
in of late) to spread through many countries,-together with
the malignity of sects, and those compendious artifices and
devices which have crept into the place of solid erudition-
seem to portend for literature and the sciences A TEMPEST.
And no doubt but that fair-weather learning which is nursed
By leisure, blossoms under reward and praise, which cannot
Withstand the shock of opinion, and is liable to be 
Abused by tricks and quackery, will sink under such
Impediments as these."
Referring to the state of knowledge Bacon continually used this imagery 
of a tempest, of tossing on the waves of the sea, and of the sailing 
ship of discovery:
"For of this there is some issue; whereas in what is now
done in the matter of science there is only a whirling
round about, and perpetual agitation, ending where it
"And this in has in fact been the error of all those who
have ventured themselves at all upon the waves of experience-
that being either too weak of purpose or too eager for display,
they have all at the outset sought prematurely for works, as
proofs and pledges of their progress, and upon that rock have
been wrecked and cast away."
In his metaphoric system Bacon depicted, in addition to an Intellectual 
Globe, the idea of an Intellectual Compass that with his New Organum, 
his new machine for the discovery of new arts and sciences:
"Having thus coasted past the ancient arts,the next
point is to equip the intellect for passing beyond."
"Take an example from history. In olden days, when men
directed their course at sea by observation of the stars,
they merely skirted the shores of the old continent or
ventured to traverse small landlocked seas.They had to
await the discovery of a more reliable guide, the needle,
before they crossed the ocean and opened up the regions
of the New World. Similarly, men's discoveries in the
arts and sciences up till now are such as could be made
by intuition, experience, observation, thought;they
concerned only things accessible to the senses.  But,
before men can voyage to remote and hidden regions of
nature, they must first be provided with some better
and management of the human mind. Such a discovery
would, without a doubt, be the noblest, the truly
masculine birth of time."
Bacon saw the existing state of knowledge of the quest for knowledge in 
his time as a ship whirling around and around in a tempest. But as for 
the pleasure and contentment of knowledge he commended the description 
of Lucretius:
"It is a view of delight (saith he) to stand or walk upon the shore 
side, and a see a ship tossed with tempest upon the sea; or to be in a 
fortified tower, and to see two battles join upon a plain.But it is a 
pleasure incomparable, for the mind of man to be settled, landed and 
fortified in the certainty of truth; and from thence to descry and 
behold the errors, perturbations, labours and wandering up and down of 
other men."
We have seen how the quest for the discovery of new knowledge was 
depicted in Bacon's metaphoric system, and how truth was depicted, but 
what about philosophical systems? There is no equivocation about this.
They are seen as theater plays. Bacon says:
          "For as on the phenomena of the heavens many hypotheses
           may be constructed, so likewise (and more also) many
           dogmas may be set up and established on the phenomena 
           of philosophy.  And in the plays of philosophical theatre
           you may observe the same thing which is found in the
           theatre of the poets, that stories invented for the stage
           are more compact and elegant, and more as one would wish
           them to be, than true stories out of history."   

Now that I have gathered some of the pieces of Bacon's metaphoric 
analogue system together, just so there is no misunderstanding, let me 
summarize. Bacon's metaphoric system is a crystalline globe, "the 
intellectual globe' that reflects in itself the great globe - the 
earth.  Its two main divisions are the area within and around the 
Mediterranean sea denoting ancient knowledge, and the New World beyond 
the pillars of Hercules, far across the Atlantic denoting New 
Knowledge.  The quest for knowledge and for new discoveries is a 
sailing ship of discovery that ventures forth beyond the pillars of 
Hercules, and is guided by an "intellectual compass." The Intellectual 
Compass is the new organum, Bacon's discovery device that enables the 
discovery of new arts and sciences. This ship is tossed on the waves 
of experience, and the existing ship of discovery is whirling around 
and around, not going anywhere, caught in a tempest that portends the 
shipwreck of the ship of discovery. The possession of valid knowledge 
is like being in a fortified tower on the seashore watching the ships 
of those, who search futilely for knowledge, tossed in the tempest at 
sea. And philosophical systems are stage plays.
Now that we have all the props and stage dressings of Bacon's 
metaphoric system lets take the thing on the road and see how it plays 
in Peoria. We all know that there are a few wobbly wheel types out 
there who keep trying to get the idea that Bacon wrote the Shakespeare 
works to float. So let's consider this. The Tempest is a good place to 
start. This was the first play in the first edition of the collected 
works of Shakespeare. Is there anything there that might lead one to 
think Bacon wrote the play?
The setting of the play is the Mediterranean Sea. Yet it is also in 
the New World, Far West of the Mediterranean Sea and Gates of Hercules 
at the same time. In his The Tempest as Kaleidoscope Hallet Smith says:
"The 'uninhabited island,'as the Folio calls it, which is the scene of The Tempest, is apparently somewhere in the Mediterranean, since the shipwrecked characters in the play were en route from Tunis to Italy. Yet the imagery of the play and some of the descriptive detail concerning the island strongly suggest the New World across the Atlantic."
A ship at sea is caught in a terrible tempest. The tempest roars; balls of fire roll through the masts of the ship; the mariners are work desperately to save it. The ship cannot run free before the wind because the storm forces it toward a nearby island. It is in danger of striking the rocks, spliting, and sinking. The mariners attempt to prevent the ship from drifting leeward by
lowering the topmast, thus removing some of the weight aloft. But the tempest continues to drive the ship toward the island and in the midst of their desperate labors the Boatswain must contend with the meddling of the nobility aboard the ship. Finally all is given up for lost. The Boatswain takes to drink. The King, his son, and his counselor to prayers, and the brother of the King, and the Duke of Milan to cursing. The ship strikes, splits, and all aboard are lost. All except the mariners abandon ship, leaping wildly into the tempest tossed waves. While this is going Prospero the magus the figure that personifies knowledge is shown as standing in the calm of his fortified cell as in a tower at the seashore watching all the display of the ship caught in the tempest at sea.
What's up with all this? We have all of the paraphernalia of Bacon's metaphoric world here. But now, instead of standing outside this world looking at a collection of ideas, he has taken us through the looking glass. You unlock this door with the key of imagination. Beyond it is another dimension - a dimension of sound, a dimension of sight, a dimension of mind. You're moving into a land of both shadow and substance, of things and ideas. You've just crossed over into the Intellectual Globe. Look! There's the signpost up ahead.It has a message for us:
spelled out with the first letters of the respective lines:
 T     Then Prospero, Mafter of a full poore cell,
   A      And thy no greater Father.
         Mira. More to know
   D      Did neuer medle with my thoughts.
         Pros. 'Tis time
 I     I fshould informe thee farther: Lend thy hand
  A    And plucke my Magick garment from me: So,
   L   Lye there my Art: wipe thou thine eyes, haue comfort,
   THE      The direfull fpectacle of the wracke which touch'd
  T    The very vertue of compaffion in thee:
    I     I haue with fuch prouifion in mine ART
   S      So fafely ordered, that there is no foule
   N      No not fo much perdition as an hayre
 B     Betid to any creature in the veffell
  W    Which thou heardft cry, which thou faw'st finke: Sit
   F      For thou muft now know farther.                  downe,
        Mira. You haue often
   B      Begun to tell me what I am, but ftopt
 A     And left me to a booteleffe inquisition,
    CON    Concluding, ftay, not yet.
        Prof. The howr's now come
   T      The very minute byds thee ope thine eare,
   OBEY    Obey, and be attentiue.
   Tobey, or Tobie Matthew(the spelling was quite flexible in those days),
was Bacon's closest companion who played an important, although subordinate
role in carrying out Bacon's designs. He was so close to Bacon that Bacon
called him "another myself", and, in a letter to Conde Gondomar said,
"Profection domini Tobiae Matthaei, qui mihi est tanquam alter ego.." 
Bacon has not only taken us inside his analogue world; his Intellectual Globe,
he has also supplied the Intellectual Compass to guide us with our voyage
in this metaphoric world. We only have to learn to use this Intellectual
Comments for Mather Walker

Bacon & The Art of Discovery              
Bacon 101-2
Winston Churchhill said a fanatic is someone who can't change their
mind and won't change the subject. Fanatic I may be, but what better
obsession could one have than Francis Bacon? These little asides 
divagate, but I am trying to steer a safe course between the Scylla and 
Charybdis of Joe Friday's "just the facts ma'am" and the "spoon full of 
sugar helps the medicine go down" of Mary Poppins. Above all I am 
striving for the Holy Grail of all writing: clarity. Bear with me - 
the role of "one-eyed man in the kingdom of the blind" would not have 
been my first choice, but someone has to keep the Baconian flag from 
being dragged through the mud. :-D
In the first part of this study I depicted Bacon fashioning a 
metaphoric analogue system, a globe of crystal. An "intellectual 
globe' that reflected in itself the great globe - the earth. I showed 
this "intellectual globe" had two major divisions: the Mediterranean 
Sea area, corresponding to ancient knowledge, and the New World 
corresponding to New Knowledge.  We tend to forget today since 
historical studies in our times have pushed the inquiry back into 
Mesopotamia and Sumer that in Bacon's time the Mediterranean was it as 
far as the ancient world was concerned. Classical antiquity were a 
rather provincial folk neatly labeled with the remark of Plato 
regarding the Mediterranean, "Like frogs around a pond we have
settled down upon the shores of this sea."  
In the first part of this study I showed further that Bacon used the 
metaphor of a sailing ship of discovery venturing forth beyond the 
Pillars of Hercules to symbolize the quest for new knowledge and new 
discoveries, and that in his metaphoric system this ship was guided by 
an "intellectual compass". I then showed that in The Tempest Bacon 
took us through the looking glass into the world of that metaphoric 
analogue system, where the message:
   gave clear evidence he had supplied an Intellectual compass to guide 
our voyages.
I use the phrase "through the looking glass" advisedly. Like the  
"Through the Looking-Glass" tale of Lewis Carroll The Tempest is a 
logic system. The Tempest (as well as the other plays in the First 
Folio) are models of the operation of a logic machine designed to 
discover new arts and sciences. But unfortunately this is another 
association with Lewis Carroll. In the short story, "What do you mean 
it was brillig?" James Thurber wrote a hilarious story about some 
problems he had with communication, and I picked up some of the 'it was 
brillig' syndrome in the reactions to my first part of this study.  
However, if the relatively transparent first part evoked a "it was 
brillig" reaction, I am afraid this second may require Ghost Busters 
themselves to exorcise the wraith of Hideyo Noguchi.(Noguchi was a 
microbiologist who conceived an erroneous idea about the cause of 
yellow fever. In an effort to prove the correctness of his theory 
Noguchi exposed himself to the disease. Noguchi's famous last words, 
from his deathbed, were: "I don't understand".)
Speaking of understanding, it is unfortunate Bacon's Great Instauration 
   is not better understood. It holds the key to the Shakespeare plays. 
My goal here is twofold. First to lay a foundation of the ideas from 
Bacon's writings that will enable a real understanding of The Tempest, 
and then to make an analysis of the play in accordance with these 
Bacon divided his Great Instauration into six parts:
  1.  The Division of The Sciences
  2.  The New Organum (The New Machine for the Intellect)
  3.  The Phenomena of The Universe
  4.  The Ladder of The Intellect
  5.  The Forerunners; or Anticipations of the New Philosophy
  6.  The New Philosophy
There was an entirely logical arrangement to these parts. Part one 
(The Advancement of Learning (1605) and De Augmentis (1623)) was a 
survey of the existing state of learning with a particular view to 
highlighting its deficiencies. Part Two (The Novum Organum - New 
Machine for the Intellect) described a New Machine for the intellect 
that could be used to discover new Arts and Sciences. Part three (the 
Histories) dealt with collecting data to be used by the New Machine.  
Part four (The Ladder of the Intellect) consisted of models showing the 
operation of the New Machine with various notable examples. Part five 
was discoveries Bacon had made himself without recourse to the New 
Machine. Part six was to be the future new science.
Since part six was to be the future new science we should not expect 
anything from Bacon on this. However, Bacon continually spoke as if 
parts 4 and 5 already existed. Scholars of Bacon's works believe he 
left no writings to represent these parts of his Great Instauration. 
But these scholars are excellent examples of the Noguchi Syndrome.
My contention is that the Shakespeare plays contain the two missing 
parts of the Great Instauration. Bacon said he would set his knowledge 
out in tables.In The Masculine Birth of Time he said:
"Nevertheless it is important to understand how the present
is like a seer with two faces, one looking toward the future,
and the other towards the past. Accordingly I have decided to 
prepare for your instruction tables of both ages, containing
not only the past course and progress of science, but also 
anticipations of things to come. The nature of these tables you 
could not conjecture before you see them. A genuine anticipation 
of them is beyond your scope, nor would you be aware of the lack 
of it unless it was put into your hands. It is a compliment 
reserved to some of the choicer spirits among you whom I hope
to win thereby. But generally speaking science is to be sought 
from the light of nature, not from the darkness of Antiquity." 
The correspondence of this idea with Janus is obvious, as is the 
correspondence of the Janus idea with the Old World knowledge around 
the Mediterranean and the New World knowledge of the New World west of 
the Pillars of Hercules design of Bacon's Intellectual Globe. A close 
examination of the First Folio reveals an ornamental letter "W" 
beginning the name William Shakespeare in the list of actors. The 
letter is actually a depiction of a Janus head with the two faces 
looking in opposite directions. A close examination of the First Folio 
also reveals the plays have a Janus design with two faces; one looking 
toward the future, and the other toward the past. The Old World 
knowledge in The Tempest is comprised of a comprehensive allegory of 
the Ancient Mysteries (See Colin Still's study in his book, 
"Shakespeare's Mystery Play). And the New World knowledge in The 
Tempest is comprised of an inquiry used Bacon's logic machine into the 
nature of the existing state of human knowledge.
For the sake of clarity I will give a brief synopis of the machine here 
before establishing more general particulars when I cite passages from 
his works later.
One of Bacon's more important concepts was his metaphor of the Pyramid 
of Nature.In his treatise on Pan, who he said represented nature, 
Bacon expressed the idea as follows:
"Horns are given him broad at the root, but narrow and
sharp atop, because the nature of all things seems
pyramidal: for individual are infinite; but being
collected into a variety of species, they rise up into
kinds; and these again ascend, and are contracted into
generals, til at length nature may seem collected to a
point, which is signified by the pyramidal figure of
Pan's horns."
This concept is important for understanding the Ladder of the 
Intellect. Bacon gives us some information about the Ladder of the 
Intellect in the following passage from Thought and Conclusions:
"Further, the material collected should be sorted into 
orderly Tables, so that the understanding may work upon
it and thus accomplish its appropriate task.  After the
particulars have been arranged in Tables, there should
be no immediate hurry to press on with the collection of
new facts, although collecting facts is a useful thing
and is the equivalent of what might be called 'literate
experience.' For the time has now come to ascend to
generalisations. The understanding is endowed by nature
with an evil impulse to jump from particulars to the
highest axioms (what are called First Principles).  This
impulse must be held in check; but generalisations lying
close to the facts may first be made, then generalisations
The idea is present everywhere in Bacon's writing that his machine 
would employ tables of inquiry. In these tables facts related to the 
subject under inquiry were listed in a specially formatted schematic 
design that allowed automatic processing of a particular so its 
essential nature could be extracted. A description is given of the 
tables in the Novum Organum where there is an example of an inquiry 
into the nature of heat. These tables while remaining tied to the 
particular in nature (in this instance heat) were designed to review 
the cases where heat was present, where heat was absent, and where heat 
existing in varying degrees. And finally a fourth table was used to 
effect the exclusion of all traits that did not pertain to heat.
This mechanism was only one part of the logic machine. An example of 
the operation of The Ladder of the Intellect was described in the 11th 
chapter of Bacon's Valerius Terminus. Here Bacon used the example of 
an inquiry into the nature of the color white to exhibit the working of 
his Ladder of the Intellect. At the first rung of the ladder he began 
with two particulars: water (a particular liquid) and air (a particular 
gas) whose mixture would produce the quality desired. That is, beaten 
together the two produce foam which is white. At the next rung up the 
ladder he showed how it was necessary to free the operation which was 
tied down to a particular substance by ascending in generalization.  
Thus from a particular liquid (water) the ascent was made to any 
liquid. This mixture beaten together with air still produced foam, 
which gave the desired quality: white. At the next rung in the ascent 
of the ladder the generalization was raised to any to any substance or 
any body. In this case glass beaten into a powder and mixed with air 
still produced the desired quality: white. Bacon called each of these 
stages in the ascent up the Ladder of the Intellect - a direction. The 
ladder had only six rungs because after the sixth the form of whiteness 
would be attained. He went on to say that this end of the inquiry 
which had been arrived at was nothing other than the form or formal 
cause which was the true difference of the nature inquired into. This 
has some resemblance to a binary search, and it should be noted that a 
binary search with a base of 32 (the number of directions on a compass) 
requires six steps to arrive at unity.
Bacon's discovery device would guide the mind step by step as it climbs 
the pyramid of nature to successively higher stages of certainty. The 
process flows in this manner: At the lowest stage is a natural history 
of the particular being inquired into. The mind would be guided in 
accordance with the format in which the history was set out to form a 
set of individual hypothesis from the individual particulars. The 
entire process would follow the form of a pyramid because the set of 
hypothesis would be a greatly reduced set in relation to the set of 
particulars at the base of the pyramid. In the ascent of the pyramid 
the inquiry would then move into a very limited area, an area that 
Bacon called "the synopsis of all the natures in the universe", 
referred to by him as the "Alphabet of Nature". This alphabet 
consisted of the basis natures from which all the multiplicity and 
variety of nature was formed. Just as all the books in the world are 
formed from the few basic variations of the letters of the alphabet so 
the few simples nature in Bacon's Alphabet of Nature composed all of 
the things in universal nature. There is evidence that in Bacon's 
metaphoric analogue system the alphabet of nature corresponded to the 
32 directions of his "Intellectual Compass". Having attained to the 
stage of the Alphabet of Nature in Bacon's pyramid the automatic 
machinery he had designed would allow the elimination of none 
applicable natures moving the inquiry finally to the apex of the 
pyramid.  The apex would be the form of the particular under 
investigation, "form" being the true difference that distinguished this 
particular in nature from every other particular in nature. From this 
point the descent of the pyramid would be made. 
The Discovery Machine is where puzzle and cipher mania types should be 
spending their time. But the frame of reference of Bacon's metaphoric 
analogue system and related logic engine is painted on so wide a canvas 
that it escapes the scope of their perception. Instead of depositing 
the product of their peculiar talent on this sovereign subject (which 
would certainly be a signal achievement) they go running off looking 
for a cipher. In this they much resemble Steinbeck's dog.  
In his book,"Travels With Charley" John Steinbeck described his tour 
of America in a pickup truck customized into a camper with a little dog 
named Charley as a travelling companion. The dog had constant problems 
with its bladder and, whenever Steinbeck pulled off the road would go 
dashing off to find a tree at the base of which to relieve itself.
Steinbeck was in California, driving south one day toward San Francisco 
and had began to pass through the famous redwood forests when he spied 
a tree which was a veritable monster of its kind. He was suddenly 
titilated with the idea of a kind of canine Mt. Everest. When his 
little dog cocked his leg against that collosus it would attain the 
summit to which its species could aspire!  Steinbeck steered the pickup 
off the highway, came to a stop close to the monster tree, opened the 
door, and the little dog rushed out.
To Steinbeck's surprise it ran right past the giant red wood. Stein-
beck called it back and let it go again. It ran past the redwood 
again. Steinbeck proceeded to go through everything he could think of
to bring the tree to the attention of the little dog. Finally,having
exhausted all his resources, he realized the redwood went right off
the scale of what the dog perceived as a tree. The dog couldn't
recognize the tree as a tree, and consequently couldn't exercise it's 
peculiar talent on the tree.
We must always remember that the logic system Bacon built into The 
Tempest is actually a working model of a logic machine. In the preface 
to his Great Instauration Bacon said:
"And now that we have surrounded the intellect with faithful
helps and guards, and got together with more careful selection
a regular army of divine works, it may seem that we have no
more to do but to proceed to philosophy itself. And yet in
a matter so difficult and doubtful there are still more things
which it seems necessary to premise, partly for convenience
of explanation, partly for present use.
Of these the first is to set forth examples of inquiry and
Invention according to my method, exhibited by anticipation
In some particular subjects; choosing such subjects as are
at once the most noble in themselves among those under inquiry
and most different one from another; that there may be an
example of every kind. I do not speak of those examples
which are joined to the several precepts and rules by way
of illustration (for of these I have given plenty in the 
second part of the work); but I mean actual types and models,
by which the entire process of the mind and the whole fabric
and order of invention from the beginning to the end, in
certain subjects, and those various and remarkable, should
be set as it were before the eyes. FOR I REMEMBER THAT IN
YOU HAVE A MACHINE BESIDE YOU, whereas without that help
all appears involved and more subtle than it really is.  To
examples of this kind,-being in fact nothing more than an
application of the second part in detail and at large,-
the fourth part of the work is devoted."
You have to watch Bacon's casual references. They can easily signify  
more than appears to the casual glance and can easily slip by without 
their import being recognized. In this case the "machine" Bacon 
referred to could only have been an astrolabe.  Predecessor to the 
sextant the astrolabe was an instrument composed of two metal disks 
bearing projections of the celestial and terrestrial sphere. A 
rotating arm on the back enabled the user to set the inclination of an 
object from the horizon and to calculate various angles to determine 
the angle of latitude and the time. Just as Bacon's metaphoric 
analogue system employed a macrocosmic-microcosm relationship so the 
astrolabe employed a macrocosmic-microcosm relationship. And just as 
the astrolabe was a tool used by the sailing ships of discovery that 
sailed forth from the Old World to the New, so Bacon's metaphoric 
analogue system had a similar function.
If sanity were not in such short supply Baconians would have long ago 
gathered together all the passages from Bacon's writings that provide 
information about his logic machine. And would have used this as a base 
for analysis of The Tempest which was especially designed to be an 
introductory piece to his First Folio and in which may be found the 
whole enchilada. Things being what they are, however, many people,
the orthodox and the Baconian alike, don't even realize that Bacon 
claimed to have invented a logic machine for the discovery of new
arts and sciences, and those few perceptive ones like J. G. Crowther
who realize he did tend to discount the claim out of hand. Crowther 
"Bacon conceived the idea of an improved method of discovery
in his youth. The possession of this idea led him to consider
what might be done with it. He saw in it a key to all know-
ledge, which made a complete investigation of nature possible.
His mind therefore moved to the consideration of how, being
In possession of the key, the complete investigation of nature
Should be organized, and what should be done with the result.
How was human life to be managed in the light of the knowledge
That was coming to it? How was man to govern his scientific
He became preoccupied with this question, so that in his later
Years it took precedence over his concern with method, in which
He had at first been chiefly interested."
Crowther did not realize that Bacon's concern with how human life was 
to be managed in the light of the knowledge coming to it rather than a 
continuing concern with method resulted because he had solved the 
problem of method. Crowther could not bring himself to entertain the 
idea that Bacon had actually devised the new method, and that, 
therefore, his concern exclusively with the results of its usage was 
due to his having already perfected it. Crowther said:
"He did not leave any description of an automatic method
of discovery in which imagination plays no part; he 
almost certainly did not succeed in discovering this."
The idea that such a "machine" might actually have been invented is 
almost beyond human credibility and Crowther may be excused his failure 
to give it credence. After all most of the small animals who happen 
upon this water hole don't even realize that the crocodile lying in 
wait to put an end to their pursuit of the subject is precisely the 
issue of this "discovery machine". The development of such a machine 
has been deemed impossible. Bacon said he had invented it, but after 
reflection, had decided that it should be transmitted privately. If in 
fact it was transmitted privately it has remained private. Certainly 
it is true that, as with much of Bacon's Great Instauration, his Art of 
Discovery has not been understood.
The actual course of science has proceeded by quite a different path.  
Instead of a method such as that hinted at by Bacon, the method 
clarified and perfected by Galileo has been generally adopted, and has 
remained the characteristic research method of modern science.  
Galileo's method, seen at its most brilliant in his discovery of the 
laws of motion, consists in the exact measurement of particular cases 
by experiment, and then the discovery of a mathematical formula, 
through an effort of the imagination, by which all particular cases can 
be described, and any other of the same kind forecast by mathematical 
manipulation of the formula.  The correctness of deductions from the 
formula is then tested by experiment. If these prove to be wrong, 
fresh experiments conceived in the light of what has already been 
observed, are made to secure further facts, which may inspire the 
conceptions of a more correct theory or formula. If this proves 
inadquate, the research may be continued in the same way until an 
adequate law is found. This method of discovery depends on the 
imagination or intuition.
Bacon's method, as he described it, was quite different, and was one 
whereby the mind was guided every step of the way by a machine devised 
for the purpose, just as the hand is guided by a ruler in drawing a 
straight line, or by a compass in drawing a circle, or alternately as a 
ship is guided by a compass in a voyage at sea. From the infinite 
diversity of nature Bacon's system utilized a ladder of generalization 
ending in each case in one of the very limited number of basic 
qualities that he labeled the Alphabet of Nature. This very restricted 
terminus to the operation made, at a single stroke, devising a 
discovery machine feasible.
According to Bacon, not only had he devised this new method, which he 
referred to as his "new machine" for investigation of nature, or 
"Formula of Interpretation", he had also made the decision to keep it 
secret. In "Of the Interpretation of Nature" (1603) Bacon said:
"If anyone call on me for works, and that presently; I
tell him frankly, without any imposture at all, that for
me-a man not old, of weak health, my hands full of civil
business, entering without guide or light upon an argument
of all others the most obscure-I HOLD IT ENOUGH TO HAVE
And, in the "Epistle Dedicatory to The Great Instauration" written in 
1620 he said:
"I HAVE PROVIDED THE MACHINE , but the stuff must be 
gathered from the facts of nature."
 But Bacon also said in his "Of the Interpretation of Nature":
"in this case it is no imposture all, but a sober foresight,
which tells me that the formula itself of interpretation, and
the discoveries made by the same, will thrive better if
committed to the charge of some fit and selected minds, and
kept private."
He then makes the very revealing statement that I consider one of the 
strongest indications that Bacon did, in fact, have a secret society:
Bacon also said, in his "Thoughts and Conclusions":
"For himself Bacon was minded not to yield to his own or
to anyone's impatience, but to keep his eyes fixed on the
ultimate success of the project.  He would therefore
communicate his tables only to a few and keep the rest
back till after the publication of treatise for popular
When he came to formulate his Intellectual Compass Bacon selected
these so they would fit in with his scheme of an Intellectual Compass
and an Intellectual Globe, and the other particulars of his remarkable
Stage two of the Instauration was the Novum Organum (New Machine).
It had eleven parts:
  1.  Presentation of Instances to the Understanding (the tables)
  2.  Indulgence of the Understanding, or the commencement of
       Interpretation, or the First Vintage
  3.  Prerogative Instances
  4.  Of the Supports of Induction
  5.  Of the Correction of Induction
  6.  Of Varying the Investigation according to the Nature
       of the Subject
  7.  Of the Prerogative Natures with Respect to Investigation
  8.  Of the Limits of Investigation, or a Synopsis of All Natures
       that Exist in the Universe
  9.  Of the Application to Practical Purposes, or What Relates to Man
 10.  Of the Preparations for Investigation
 11.  Of the Ascending and Descending Scale of Axioms
Bacon turned next to Prerogative Instances which, "make a way through
pathless areas and cut a direct road, as it were, across windings and
turnings in nature, thus abridging investingation." There are 27
categories of these. Bacon goes into each in detail. At this point,
however, the Novum Organum breaks off, and divisions 4 through 11 are 
not covered. Of these probably the more important for the present 
consideration are 6 and 8.  Certainly the synopsis of the nature given 
in his Augmentis and Sylva Sylvarum do not apply to the particular 
under investigation in The Tempest. So how do you vary the 
investigation according to the nature of the subject in The Tempest? 
Division 8 is a highly significant division for understanding Bacon's 
logic machine.
It is also helpful to have more information about Bacon's tables. Some 
of his descriptions were as follows:
  "Moreover, since there is so great a number and army of parti-
   culars, and that army so scattered and dispersed as to distract
   and confound the understanding, little is to be hoped for from
   the skirmishings and slight attacks and desultory movements of
   the intellect, unless all the particulars which pertain to the
   subject of inquiry shall, by means of Tables of Discovery, apt,
   well arranged, and as it were animate, be drawn up and marshalled;
   and the mind be set to work upon the helps duly prepared and
   digested which these tables supply."
This, "and as it were animate" is certainly a curious description for
these tables. Another passage strengthens this impression. The work
Thoughts and Conclusions (Cogitata et Visa) was written by Bacon in
1607. It was published in 1653 by Isaac Gruter at Leyden. James Spedding
found a manuscript copy in 1857 in the library at Oxford with passages
which had been omitted from Gruter's print. Bacon said that,
"...he thought best, after long considering the subject and weighing
it carefully, first of all to prepare Tabulae Inveniendi or regular
forms of inquiry; in other words, a mass of particulars arranged
for the understanding, and to serve, as it were, for an example and
almost visible representation of the matter,"
then a couple of sentences later comes that curious passage which had 
been omitted from the Leyden publication:
  "But when these Tabulae Inveniendi have been put forth and seen,
   he does not doubt that the more timid wits will shrink almost in
   despair from imitating them with productions with other materials
   or on other subjects; and they will take so much delight in the
   specimen given that they will miss the precepts in it. Still,
   many will be led to inquire into the real meaning and highest
   use of these writings, and to find the key to their interpretation,
   and thus more ardently desire, in some degree at least, to acquire
   the new aspect of nature which such a key will reveal."
He gives further information on the fourth part of his Instauration in 
the Novum Organum:
  "by far the greatest obstacle to the progress of science and to the
   undertaking of new tasks and provinces therein, is found in this-
   that men despair and think things impossible...The strongest means
   of inspiring hope will be to bring men to particulars, especially
   to particulars digested and arranged in my Tables of Discovery
   (the subject partly of the second, but much more of the fourth
   part of my Instauration) since this is not merely the promise of
   the thing but the thing itself."
This may, perhaps, be sufficient preliminary information before 
proceeding directly to an analysis of The Tempest.
Comments for Mather Walker