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Bacon the Alchemist

Guest Ryan Murtha

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Guest Ryan Murtha

I wasn't sure where to post this so it's here. This is really interesting and should turn up further discoveries. I've been reading Steve Matthews' book Theology and Science in the Thought of Francis Bacon, which I can't praise highly enough. Evidently a big influence on Bacon was Irenaeus of Lyon; this reminded me of the alchemy texts that went out under the pseudonym Eirenaeus Philalethes. I had suspected Bacon's authorship of these so I went back to look, and the first text The Marrow of Alchemy, 1654, went out under Eirenaeus Philoponus (lover of toil) Philalethes (lover of truth). So I looked up Philoponus and it turns out per Wiki-

John Philoponus broke from the Aristotelian–Neoplatonic tradition, questioning methodology and eventually leading to empiricism in the natural sciences. He was one of the first to propose a "theory of impetus" similar to the modern concept of inertia over Aristotelian dynamics.  

copies of his work, The contra Aristotelem, resurfaced in medieval Europe, through translations from Arabic of his quotes included in the work of Simplicius of Cilicia, which was debated in length by Muslim philosophers such as al-Farabi, Avicenna, al-Ghazali and later Averroes, influencing Bonaventure and Buridan in Christian Western Europe, but also Rabbanite Jews such as Maimonides and Gersonides, who also used his arguments against their Karaite rivals. 

So Bacon intended for this stuff to be found eventually, the Eugenius Philalethes texts have his signatures all over them and the Eirenaeus Philalethes texts are turning up Bacon grease as well. Prose excellent throughout and the vocabulary matches. 

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Guest Ryan Murtha


The entry of truth depends on the mind capable to lodge and harbor it. Novum Organum

I like better that entry of truth which comes peaceably, as with chalk to mark up those minds which are capable to lodge and harbor such a guest, than that which forces its way pugnacity and contention. De augmentis scientiarum

You ought to know concerning the Quintessence, that it is a matter little and small, lodged and harbored in some Tree, Herb, Stone, or the like...

The Tomb of Semiramis https://www.alchemywebsite.com/tumba.html


This bias, as we think, ought to be counteracted, and these our statements have this scope, (we speak it without reserve), to lead mean willing, not to drag them reluctant. All forcing, (as we from the first professed), we would banish: and as Borgia jestingly noted of the invasion of Italy by Charles the Eighth, that the French had come with chalk in their hand to mark the public-houses, not arms to force their way through the land; so we too anticipate a like pacific tone and result of our discoveries, namely, that they shall segregate minds of large capacity from the crowd, and into these shall make their way, rather than be obnoxious to men of opposite opinions.

Interpretation of Nature, Works Montagu Vol. 15 p. 119

French Academy: Hereupon it came that king Charles the eighth easily overran all Italy with chalk, as we used to speak; that is to say that without resistance he sent before to take up his lodging, because they that should have withstood him and were called in to keep the country, did of their own accord take his part.

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