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This edition, which is in 12mo,* and not paged, is, except a few literal variations, a transcript of the edition of 1597.1 The next edition was in 1612. It is entitled,
“ The Essaies
Imprinted at London by
“ Iohn Beale,
« 1612.”. It was the intention of Sir Francis to have de
and especially from an expensive edition of Lord Bacon's works, in which the Essays appear to be greatly mutilated."
It is probable that this (although groundless) relates to the edition of 1730, published by Blackburn. It may, perhaps, be doubtful whether this is a MS. of the edition of 1597 or of 1606; but the first Essay in the edition of 1587 says, " he conferre little, he had need of a present witt:" but the words “ he had need of" are omitted in the edition of 1606. They are however in the MS. in the Museum. There is also in the Harleiam MSS. 6797, a MS. of two Essays, of Faction and of Negotiating, with cross lines drawn through them.
I have a copy in my possession, with a very bad engraving of Lord Bacon prefixed above the following lines :
“ Bacon, his Age's Pride and Britann's Glory
“Having well-weigh'd each Tittle of that Praise,
“ Found a great part arose from his ESAIES.” As this volume, published 1606, (three years after the death of his brother Anthony), contains the dedication to Anthony and these lines, and as I do not find the edition mentioned in any of his letters: query, was it published by the author or by some bookseller?
+ For instance; the dedication in 1597 is to M. Anthony
dicated this edition to Henry Prince of Wales, bu he was prevented by the death of the Prince on the 6th of November in that year. This appears by the following letter: “ To the most high and excellent prince, HENRY,
“ Prince of Wales, Duke of Cornwall, and Earl “ of Chester.
“ It may please your Highness,
Having divided my life into the contemplative “ and active part, I am desirous to give his majesty " and your highness of the fruits of both, simple though they be.
“ To write just treatises, requireth leisure in the “ writer, and leisure in the reader, and therefore are “not so fit, neither in regard of your highness's “ princely affairs, nor in regard of my continual ser“ vice; which is the cause that hath made me choose “ to write certain brief notes, set down rather signi
ficantly than curiously, which I have called Essays. “ The word is late, but the thing is ancient; for “ Seneca's epistles to Lucilius, if you mark them “ well, are but essays, that is, dispersed meditations, “ though conveyed in the form of epistles. These “ labours of mine, I know, cannot be worthy of your
highness, for what can be worthy of you ? But my “ hope is, they may be as grains of salt, that will “ rather give you an appetite, than offend you with
satiety. And although they handle those things “ wherein both mens lives and their persons are most
Bacon, and in 1606 it is to Maister Anthony Bacon: and the signature in 1597 is Fran. Bacon; in 1606 is Francis Bacon.
* conversant; yet what I have attained I know not; * but I have endeavoured to make them not vulgar, " but of a nature, whereof a man shall find much in
experience, and little in books; so as they are "neither repetitions nor fancies. But, however, I “shall most humbly desire your highness to accept “ them in gracious part, and to conceive, that if I “ cannot rest, but must shew my dutiful and devoted " affection to your highness in these things which “ proceed from myself, I shall be much more ready “ to do it in performance of any of your princely “commandments. And so wishing your highness “ all princely felicity I rest
“ Your Highness's most humble servant, " 1612.
“ FR. BACON.” It was dedicated as follows: To my loving Brother Sr Iohn CONSTABLE Knight.*
My last Essaies I dedicated to my deare brother “ Master Anthony Bacon, who is with God. Looking
amongst my papers this vacation, I found others “ of the same Nature : which if I myselfe shall not “suffer to be lost, it seemeth the World will not ; " by the often printing of the former. Missing my Brother, I found you next, in respect of bond both of neare alliance, and of straight friendship and societie, and particularly of communication in studies.
Francis Bacon married Alice Burnham, and Sir John Constable married her sister Dorothy Burnham. In Lord Bacon's will, he says, Sir John Constable, Knight, my brother-in-law; and he nominates him as one of his executors.
“ Wherein I must acknowledge my selfe beholding “ to you. For as my businesse found rest in my “contemplations; so my contemplations ever found “rest in your louing conference and judgment. So wishing you all good, I remaine “ Your louing brother and friend,
“ FRA. Bacon." The Table of Essays is, 1. Of Religion. 2. Of Death. 3. Of Goodnes and goodnes of nature. 4. Of Cunning. 5. Of Marriage and single life. 6. Of Parents and Children. 7. Of Nobilitie. 8. Of Great place. 9. Of Empire. 10. Of Counsell. 11. Of Dispatch. 12. Of Loue. 13 Of Friendshippe. 14. Of Atheisme. 15. Of Superstition. 16. Of Wisdome for a Mans selfe. 17. Of Regiment of Health. 18. Of Expences. 19. Of Discourse. 20. Of Seeming wise. 21. Of Riches. 22. Of Ambition. 23. Of Young men and age. 24. Of Beautie.
05. Of Deformitie.
It is an octavo of 241 pages; and the two last Essays “ of the Publique,” and “ Of War and “ Peace,” although mentioned in the table of contents, are not contained in the body of the work.*
This edition contains all the Essays which are in the preceding editions, except the Essay “ Of Honor “ and Reputation :” and the title in the former editions of the Essay “ Of Followers and Friends," is in this edition “ Of Followers,” and there is a separate Essay “ Of Friendship.” The Essays in Italics are in the former editions.
These Essays are more extensive than the Essays in the preceding editions, according to the manner of
There is in the British Museum, and in the Bodleian; and I have a copy.