“Of Studies” by Francis Bacon
The purpose of this work is to analyze Sixteen Century Francis Bacon’s essay “Of Studies” by summarizing its main points and the relevance of its statements to this day. Francis Bacon was an English Philosopher and writer best known as a founder of the modern empirical tradition based on the rational analysis of data obtained by observation and experimentation of the physical world. The main focus of Bacon’s essay rests on explaining to the reader the importance of study knowledge in terms of its practical application towards the individual and its society. His first analysis is an exposition on the purposes or uses that different individuals can have by approaching Study –“…for delight, ornament, and for ability”- And how certain professions are better served by individuals with study knowledge. As he mentions the virtues of Study he also points out its vices: –“To spend too much time in study is sloth…” Also, how Study influences our understanding of Nature, and in opposition, how our experience of Nature bounds our acquired knowledge. After that, the Author presents the concept of how different individuals with different mental abilities and interests in life, approach the idea of studying –“Crafty men contemn studies…”- and offers advice on how study should be applied: –“…but to weight and consider”- Then Bacon goes into expressing his ideas in how the means to acquire study knowledge, books, can be categorized and read according to their content and value to the individual. The benefits of studying are Bacon’s final approach. Benefits in terms of defining a “Man” by its ability to read, write or confer, and in terms of being the medicine for any “impediment in the wit” and by giving “receipts” to “every defect of the mind”. Certainly, some of Francis Bacon’s insights in this subject are of value after 400 years of societal evolution. We can ascertain this when we read the phrase “They perfect Nature, and are...
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