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27 Francis Bacon Qoutes



Francis Bacon (1561-1626) was an English philosopher, statesman, scientist, jurist, orator, and author. He is widely regarded as the father of empiricism and the scientific method. Bacon served both as Attorney General and Lord Chancellor of England. His works are credited with developing the scientific method and remained influential through the scientific revolution.

Key Points from His Books:

1. Empiricism: Bacon emphasized the importance of empirical evidence in scientific inquiry. He argued that knowledge should be built from careful observations of the natural world rather than relying on ancient texts and philosophies.

2. Inductive Reasoning: Bacon promoted inductive reasoning, which involves making generalizations based on individual observations. This was a significant departure from the deductive reasoning used by his contemporaries.

3. The Four Idols: In his work “Novum Organum,” Bacon identified four “idols” or false notions that interfere with understanding: Idols of the Tribe (human nature), Idols of the Cave (individual biases), Idols of the Marketplace (miscommunication), and Idols of the Theatre (philosophical dogma).


1. “Read not to contradict and confute; nor to believe and take for granted; nor to find talk and discourse; but to weigh and consider.” – Essays (1625)

2. “It is a strange desire, to seek power and to lose liberty.” – Essays (1625)

3. “The subtlety of nature is greater many times over than the subtlety of the senses and understanding.” – Novum Organum (1620)

4. “There is no excellent beauty that hath not some strangeness in the proportion.” – Essays (1625)

5. “They are ill discoverers that think there is no land when they can see nothing but sea.” – The Advancement of Learning (1605)

6. “Truth is the daughter of time, not of authority.” – Essays (1625)

7. “A man that studieth revenge keeps his own wounds green.” – Essays (1625)

8. “If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to begin with doubts, he shall end in certainties.” – The Advancement of Learning (1605)

9. “Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed.” – Novum Organum (1620)

10. “The root of all superstition is that men observe when a thing hits, but not when it misses.” – Novum Organum (1620)

11. “Men fear death as children fear to go in the dark; and as that natural fear in children is increased with tales, so is the other.” – Essays (1625)

12. “Hope is a good breakfast, but it is a bad supper.” – Apophthegms (1624)

13. “Imagination was given to man to compensate him for what he is not; a sense of humor to console him for what he is.” – Essays (1625)

14. “Money is like muck, not good unless it be spread.” – Essays (1625)

15. “The job of the artist is always to deepen the mystery.” – Essays (1625)

16. “Age appears to be best in four things; old wood best to burn, old wine to drink, old friends to trust, and old authors to read.” – Apophthegms (1624)

17. “Reading maketh a full man; conference a ready man; and writing an exact man.” – Essays (1625)

18. “The remedy is worse than the disease.” – Essays (1625)

19. “The less people speak of their greatness, the more we think of it.” – Essays (1625)

20. “Prosperity is not without many fears and distastes; and adversity is not without comforts and hopes.” – Essays (1625)

21. “The best part of beauty is that which no picture can express.” – Essays (1625)

22. “A little philosophy inclineth man’s mind to atheism, but depth in philosophy bringeth men’s minds about to religion.” – Essays (1625)

23. “He that gives good advice, builds with one hand; he that gives good counsel and example, builds with both.” – Essays (1625)

24. “The human understanding is like a false mirror, which, receiving rays irregularly, distorts and discolors the nature of things by mingling its own nature with it.” – Novum Organum (1620)

25. “The great end of life is not knowledge but action.” – Essays (1625)

26. “It is a true rule that love is ever rewarded, either with the reciproque, or with an inward and secret contempt.” – Essays (1625)

27. “He that hath wife and children hath given hostages to fortune; for they are impediments to great enterprises, either of virtue or mischief.” – Essays (1625)