London: I: John Haviland for William Lee; II: I.H. and R.Y., 1635; 1629. Three works in one. Folio. [xx], 260, ; [iv], 47, , [ii], 248,  pp. FIFTH AND SECOND EDITIONS. Complete with frontispiece portrait of the author and the uncommon second engraved title, the tables and the recipe for gout in the first work, woodcut vignette on the title page of New Atlantis, and engraved title for Henry VII. Woodcut initials, head- and tailpieces, text within ruled borders. Contemporary calf, blind-ruled border on covers, front joint weak; text is slightly toned. A very handsome copy. Item #17438
Fifth edition of Bacon’s collection of exceedingly significant scientific experiments and observations on natural history, published posthumously by his personal chaplain, William Rawley. It was in this work that Bacon strove to separate his views of natural history from those of his contemporaries by building on a notion of the “new science” rather than collecting pleasant pictures and descriptions. The second work is Bacon’s highly acclaimed, yet unfinished, utopian novel, New Atlantis, which details the customs, people, society, and history of the fictitious island of Bensalem and the Salomon House, their cooperative college of science. The “new science” described in this work, along with Bacon’s other writings, was so influential that it eventually contributed to the formation of the Royal Society (DSB, I, p. 376 and generally pp. 372-377).
Second edition of Henry VII, actually a re-issue of the sheets of the second edition of 1628 (Gibson 117) with a cancel title-page and the addition of the ten page 'Index Alphabeticall, directing to the most obserueable passages in the foregoing Historie.' Bacon starts in 1485 when Henry dethrones Richard III, and details the historical events occurring throughout his reign. This work was significant in establishing the reputation of King Henry VII over the following centuries.
Bacon (1561-1626) was an English statesman, natural philosopher, and advocate of the inductive method in science. Ahead of his time, Bacon conceived a new means of acquiring true knowledge by observation, experiment and inductive reasoning. His new experimental method was to encompass an account of the current knowledge of the world with the new instruments where everyone would be capable of engaging in scientific investigation for the betterment of humankind. Although his personality was unattractive, his views of scientific methods were influential.