Skip to content
Switch branches/tags
Go to file
Cannot retrieve contributors at this time
7248 lines (6657 sloc) 461 KB
Written by her Excellency, the Lady MARCHIONESS of NEWCASTLE.
Printed for J. Martin and J. Allestry at the Bell in St. Paul's Church-Yard
Collegium sive Aula S.S.t Trinitatis in Academia Cantabrigiensi, 1700
TO THE LADY MARQVESSE OF NEVVCASTLE, On her Book entitled her Philosophical,
and Physical Opinions.
WEre the old Grave Philophers alive,
How they would envy you, and all would strive
Who first should burn their Books; since they so long
Thus have abused the world, and taught us wrong,
With hard words that mean nothing; which non-sense.
When we have Conned by heart, then we commence
Masters and Doctors, with grave looks; and then
Proud, because think, thus we are learned men,
And know not that we do know nothing right,
Like blind men now, led only by your sight.
And for diseases, let the Doctors look
Those worthy learned men but in your Book,
They will find such news in their art, and so true
As old Hippocrates he never knew,
Nor yet vast Gallen; so you need not seek
Farther then English, to know less in Greek;
If you read this and study it, you may
Out of dark ignorance see brighter Day.
AN EPISTLE To justify the LADY NEW CASTLE, AND Truth against falsehood, laying
those false, and malicious aspersions of her, that she was not Author of her
I Would willingly begin with the common, and Dunstable rode of Epistles,
Gentle Readers, but finding you much otherwise, I will fall to our discourse in
hand. First 'tis but your envious Supposition that this Lady must have converst
with many Scholars of all kinds in learning, when 'tis well known the
contrary, that she never convert with any professed Shooler in learning, for to
learn, neither did she need it, since she had the conversation of her
Honourable, and most learned Brother from her cradle; and since she was married,
with my worthy and learned Brother; and for my self I have lived in the great
world a great while, and have thought of what has been brought to me by the
senses, more then was put into me by learned discourse; for I do not love to be
led by the nose, by Authority and old Authors, ipse dixit will not serve my
turn, were Aristotle made a more Philosophical Bible then he is, and all
scholars to have a lively faith in him, doth not move me to be of their
Philosophical church at all. And I assure you her conversation with her
Brother, and Brother-in-law, were enough without a miracle or an impossibility
to get the language of the arts, and learned professions, which are their
terms, without taking any degrees in Schools. It is not so difficult a thing
though they make mountains of mole-hills, say they, thatthis Lady uses many
terms of the Schools; but truly she did never Imp her high-flying Fancies,
with any old broken Feathers out of any university; and if you read well, which
is to understand, and look on her Poems, you will (...) they are all new born
Fancies, never touched of heretofore. But for the rarity of the terms, or nests
of Divines, Philosophers, Physicians, Geometricians, Astrono mers, and the rest
of the Gown-Tribe, as one terms them, how is it possible she should know them;
And first for Divinity, when she speaks of Predestination, Free-will, (...),
and consubstantiation; truly these terms are not so hard to be got by heart as
to be understood, since I believe it puzzels the learned to make sense of them.
But I beseech you give this Lady so much capacity, as to get them by heart,
since every Tub-preacher discourses of them, and every sanctified wife gossips
them in wafers, and hipocris at every Christening. Next are the terms of the
Philosophers, Certainly 'tis no Conjuration to conceive Atoms, invisible, and
indivisible bodies, elements, earth, air, water and fire, whereof your
elementary fire under the moon is much doubted of, and then you have but three
elements. Motion is a difficult thing indeed, to understand the varietes of it,
but certainly not of a body moved, that's no such transcendent thing. Dilation
a spreading, Contraction a gathering together Rarificationthinning, and
Condensation thickening; I confess in the Latin it seems very learned, but in
the English very vulgar, there-fore I beseech you give this Lady leave to have
the wit, and the judgement to understand these Great no mysteries. And put the
case now that this Lady should name materia prima, -and understand the English
of it to be first matter, and ask her friend again what they mean by it, and he
tells her they say they mean matter without form, and she should answer, there
is no matter without some form, so materia prima are two Latin words that mean
nothing. An incorporeal substance is too learned to be understood, so that is
waved. Now for the terms of Physicians, when she speaks of Choler, Phlegm,
Melancholy and Blood, and of Ventricles in the heart and brain, of veins,
arteries and nerves, and discourses of fevers, apoplexies, convulsions,
Dropsies, and divers other diseases with their particular causes, symptoms and
cures; how should this Lady understand these terms say some? truly a good
Farmers wife in the country, by seeing one of her sheep opened, may well
understand the terms of most of these, and a Constables wife of a hundred in
Essex that uses Physic and Surgery may well talk of the diseases, without any
great learned mystery, they are so plain and so common, as none needsto
construe Greek in Hippocrates or Galen for them. But would you know how we know
the great Mystery of these Physical terms, I am almost ashamed to tell you; not
that we have been ever sickly, but by Melancholy often supposed our selves to
bave such diseases as we had not, and learned Physicians were too wise to put
us out of that humour, and so these terms cost us much more then they are
Worth, and I hope there is no body so malicious, as to envy our bargain,
neither truly do I repent my bargain, since Physicians are the most rational
men I have converst with all, and my worthy and very good friends, and truly
this Lady never converst with any Physician of any disease, but what she
thought she had her self, neither hath she converst with many of that
profession. Now for the great learning of knowing the terms of Geometricians,
when this Lady touches upon Triangles, Squares, Circles, Diameters,
Circumferences, Centers, lines straight and crooked c. I will not dissect these
great mysteries, because they are so very common, as the meanest understands
all these terms, even to Joiners and Carpenters, therefore surely this Lady is
capable of them.
Then of Astronomers, say they, when she speak's of the Horizon, Meridian,
Equator, Zodiac, Eclyptick, Tropicks, Poles of the world c. When these terms
are understood that's their meaning, they are no such subtilties, since every
boy may be taught them, with an apple for the Globe, and the parings for the
spears, it is so ridiculous then to think that this Lady cannot understand
these terms, as it is rather to be laughed at, then to trouble ones self to
answer. And that invincible Problem, the quadrature of the circle, as they call
it, which makes me doubt that they think themselves wiser, for naming the
quadrature, then squaring the circle, who lives that hath not heard of it, and
who lives that can do it, and who is dead that hath done it, and put the case
it were done, what then? why then 'tis squared, and that's all, and that all is
nothing, much ado about nothing. But we will leave these impertinent,
malicious, and most false exceptions to the Lady, and her Books, and will now
begin with her book of Poems, examining first her Philosophy there. That's an
old opinion of Atoms, say some, witness Democrates and many others; Tis very
true they have talked of atoms, but did they ever dispose of them as they are
there, or tell you what several sorts there are of them, and what figure they
bear, and being joined, what forms they produce of all kinds, in all things,
if you have read any such things before, i'll be bold to burn the Book. Why
then all these are new opinions, and grounded upon Reason, I say some, but they
are Paradoxes, what then? I hope a Paradox may be as true as an old opinion,
and an old opinion as false as a Paradox, for neither the one nor the other
makes a truth, either the new or the old, for what is most reason reasonable;
for in natural Philosophy, one opinion may be as true as another, since no body
knows the first cause in nature of any thing. Then this Ladies Philosophy is
excellent, and will be thought so hereafter, and the truth is that it was
wholly, and only wrought out of her own brain, as there are many witnesses, by
the several sheets that she sent daily to be writ fair for the press. As for
her Poems, where are the exceptions to these? marry they miss sometimes in the
numbers and in the rimes. It is well known by the copies, that those faults lie
most upon the Corrector, and the Printer; but put the case there might be some
slips in that kind, is all the book damned for it, no mercy Gentlemen? when
for the numbers, every Schoole-boy can make them on his fingers, and for Rimes
Fenner would have put down Ben. Johnson, and yet neither the boy or Fenner so
good Poets. No, it is neither of those either makes, or condemns a Poet, it is
new born and creating Fancies that Glorifies a Poet, and in her Book of Poems,
I am sure there is excellent, and new Fancies, as have not been writ by any,
and that it was only writ by her is the greatest truth in the world. Now for
her Book called the Worlds Olio, say some, how is it possible that she showld
have such experience, to write of such things so; I answer, that I living long
in the great world, and having the various fortunes of what they call good and
bad, (...) the reading of men might bring me to as much experience as the
reading of Books, and this I have now and then discoursed unto this Lady, who
hath wisely and elegantly dressed it in her own way, and sumptuously clothed it,
at the charge of her own Fancies and expressions; I say some of them she hath
heard from me, but not the fortieth part of her book, all the rest are
absolutely her own in all kinds, this is an ingenious truth, therefore believe
it. As for the Book of her Philosophical opinions, there is not any one thing
in the whole Book, that is not absolutely spun out by her own studious fancy,
and if you will lay by a little passion against writers, you will like it, and
the best, of any thing she has writ, therefore read it once or twice, not with
malice to find a little fault, but with judgement to like what is good. Truly
I cannot believe so unworthily of any Scholer, honouring them so much as we
both do, that they should envy this Lady, or should have so much malice or
emulation, to cast such false aspersions on her, that she did not write those
Books that go forth in her name, they will hardly find out who else writ them,
and I protest none ever writ them but her self; You should rather encourage
her, then by false suppositions to let her see the world is so ill natured, as
to believe falsehoods before truths. But here's the crime, a Lady writes them,
and to entrench so much upon the male prerogative, is not to be forgiven; but I
know Gown-men will be more civil to her, because she is of the Gown too, and
therefore I am confident you will defend her and truth, and thus be undeceived.
I had not troubled you with this, but that a learned Doctor, our very noble
friend, writ is word of the infidelity of some people in this kind; whatsoever
I have write is absolutely truth, which I here as a man of Honour set my hand
IN my Book called the Worlds Olio, there are such gross mistakes in
misplacing of Chapters, and so many literal faults, as my book is much
disadvantaged thereby.
As for Chapters, there are many misplaced, for some Chapters that belong to
that part of diseases, are misplaced among those of natural Philosophy, as one
that belongs to sleep, and three Chapters that are of the temper of Air;
likewise another Chapter of the strength of the soul and body is placed between
the first and last part of the Common-Wealth, which nothing belongs to it: for
though there is a soul and body belonging to every Common-Wealth, yet not such
a soul and body as I have discoursed of there.
For the soul of a Common-Wealth is Actual Justice, and industry.
The soul of a man is Contemplation, Reason, and imagination.
And the body of a Common-Wealth, is the Citizens therein, and Magistrates
And the body of a man is the senses therein, and the members thereof.
Likewise the strength of a Common-Wealth is the Laws.
And the strength of a mans body is the nerves.
Likewise a short copy of verses which is at the latter end of the book, is
what I intended for this book, as being my beloved of all my works, preferring
it as my master-piece, although I do believe it will not please my Readers,
because as I have said in some of my Epistles, few take delight in the study of
Natural Philosophy, yet those that delight not, or slight the study, or
dispraise the work, make it not the less rational, for reason will be reason
in the despite of the most malicious detractors or sophsterian censurers, but
for the faults and mistakes in my other works, and perchance the like mischance
may come to these, and although I know a passion cannot recall an injury past:
yet I cannnot but grieve at the misfortune, as for a friend that should be hurt
or lamed by some unhappy accident, but if there be any other faults of
indiscretions in it, I the Author am to be pardoned by reason somewhat of it was
writ in the dawning of my knowledge, and experience, and not having a clear
light I might chance to stamble in dark ignorance on molehills of errors; not
that I accuse my book of faults; but arm my self with truth against crabbed
censurers. Likewise I do not lay all the faults in my book to the Printers or
Correctors charge, for that would be so great an injustce, as I could never
forgive my self for the crime, for the Chapters that are misplaced are through
my fault, by reason I sent some part of it after the book was in the press,
and it seems that the Printer or corrector not understanding where to place
them, put them in a wrong place.
But the literate faults I lay to their charge, whereof I cannot choose but
complain, for in some places it is so falsely printed, as one word alters the
sense of many lines; whereby my book is much prejudiced, and not only by
putting in false words, as a costements, for accoutraments, ungrateful for
ungraceful, muster for mufler, and the like; but the significancy of words, to
express a singular for a plural; yet I must confess that this book is much
truer Printed then my book of Poems, for where this book hath one fault, that
hath ten; for which I can forgive the Printer, and Corrector ten times easier
then I did for the other, but setting aside the faults of my book, and
complaining thereof, I must take the liberty in my own behalf to complain of
this ill natured, and unbeleeving age, in not allowing me to be the right
Author thereof; and though it were an endless work to answer every idle and
impertinent question, or malicious objection; for I am assured that rational,
wise, learned, and just persons will never make a doubt, knowing that nature
hath power to temper a brain as she pleases both to receive, retain, discuss,
and create, yet for truths sake I am willing to satisfy my worthy readers (if
I can) although I had thought I had answered it in my former writings.
But to answer those objections that are made against me, as first, how should
I come by so much experience, as I have expressed in my several books to have?
I answer, I have had by relation, the long and much experience of my Lord, who
hath lived to see and be in many changes of fortunes, and to converse with many
men of sundry nations, ages, qualities, tempers, capacities, abilities, wits,
humours, fashions and customs.
And as many others, especially wives go from church to church, from ball to
ball, from collation to collation, gossiping from house to house, so when my
Lord admits me to his company, I listen with attention to his edifying
discourse, and I govern my self by his Doctrine; I dance a measure with the
muses, feast with the Sciences, or sit and discourse with the arts.
The second is, that since I am no Scholer, I cannot know the names and terms
of art, and the divers and several opinions of several Authors, I answer, that
I must have been a natural fool if I had not known and learnt them, for they
are customarily taught all children from their nurses breast being ordinarily
discoursed of in every family that is of quality, and the family from whence I
sprung are neither natural idiots, nor ignorant fools, but the contrary, for
they were rational, learned, understanding and witty.
And when I said I never converst an hour with professed Philosophers, for
indeed in this age, I have not heard of many which do profess it, or an
intimate acquaintance or familiar conversation with professed scholars, nor so
much discourse as to learn from them, for three or four visits do not make an
intimacy, nor familiarity, nor can much be learned therefrom, for visiting and
entertaining discourse, for the most part are either cautionary, frivolous,
vain, idle, or at least but common and ordinary matter, and most commonly all
visiting discourses, are after one and the same manner, although the company be
several; but I did not think my readers would have been so rigid as to think I
excluded my husband, brothers, and the rest of my family, neither are they
professed Philosophers nor Scholars, although they are learned therein, or to
believe I was so ridiculously foolish, or so foolishly vain, or so basely false
as that I strive to make the world to believe, I had all my experience and
knowledge before I was born, and that my native Language came by instinct, and
that I was never taught my A, B, C; or the marks and names of several things;
but I hope my book hath more spiteful enemies then faults; for I have said in
an Epistle before the second part of my Olio, that if I had never seen nor
heard so much as I have done, should never have been able to have writ a book.
Thirdly, that I had taken feathers out of the Universities to enlarge the
wings, of my fancy; I answer, no more then David took the wool from his sheeps
backs to cloth his Poetical Fancies of devotion, or as I may say his devout
Poetry which is dressed with simulising.
But it hath been known in several ages, that even poor Peasents that hear
nothing but the blating of sheep: the lowing of herds, the crowing of cocks,
and the like, and their ordinary discourses of nothing but of their market, or
the like, have been high flying Poets, politic states men, wise Governors,
prudent Soldiers, subtle Philosophers, excellent Physicians, and what not,
even to be eloquent Orators, and Divine preachers, as the holy writ will make
manifest to us, and I believe many more are mentioned in other Histories of
less authority; thus we may observe that nature is Prevalent in all qualities
and conditions; And since nature is so generous to distribute to those that
fortune hath cast out, and education hath neglected, why should my readers
mistrust nature should be sparing to me, who have been honourably born,
carefully bred, and nobly married to a wise man, from whom, as I have said in
some of my Epistles, in my book called the Worlds Olio, and do here say again,
and again, if it will satisfy the Readers that I am my Lords Scholer, and as I
have learnt, so I do daily learn knowledge and understanding, wit, and the
purity of my language; and let me intre at my Readers to be so just to me, as
not to condemn me for an idiot by their objections and doubts, as not believing
I am capable of learning, but let me tell my Readers that what I have learned
since I was married, it is from my Lord, and what I had learned before it was
from wy own family, as from my own brothers, for my father died when I was
young, and not from strangers; for though I have seen much company, yet I have
converst with few, and I take conversation to be in talking, which I have not
practised very much, unless it be to particular friends, for naturally I am so
wedded to contemplations, that many times when I have been in company, I had
not known one word they have said, by reason my busy thoughts have stopped the
sense of my hearing; and though I prefer the delight of contemplation, before
the pleasure of the senses, yet when the nearest and dearest of my friends
speak, as my husband, brothers, sisters, or their children, my affection is
such that I give such an attention to them, as if I had no other thoughts but of
what they say, or any other sense but hearing; but as I have said of the names
and terms of art, and the several opinions of the Ancients, and the
distinguishment of the sciences, and the like, I learned them from my nearest
and dearest friends as from my own brothers, my Lords brother, and my Lord (but
having the words and terms of art makes me not a Philosopher) nor a Poet; and
if every one in justice ought to have a due, then nature must have a share, and
truly I will never be so ungrateful as not to acknowledge her favours, or to
belie her in saying she hath not been bountiful to me, for she hath given me
such materials, as I hope to build me a monumental fame therewith; but to
satisfy my Readers, I will tell them as well as I can how I came to know, and
understand passages, all though I never practised, or were a spectator therein,
or thereof; as put the case my husband, or brothers should tell me of an Army
of horse and foot, and that two Armies encountered, and fought a battle, and
express the forms and figures, ranks and fiels, the flanck, the wings the
vans, the rears, and the like, by which relation to my conceit I see it in my
brain as perfectly, as if the battle was pitched, and fought there, and my fancy
will build discourse therefrom. Likewise if they should tell me all the parts
of an Animal body, and how they are formed and composed, I conceive it as
perfectly to my understanding as if I had seen it dissected although I never
did and therefore may be deceived in my understanding, for truly I have
gathered more by piece-meals, then from a full relation, or a methodical
education for knowledge; but my fancy will build thereupon, and make discourse
therefrom, and so of every thing they discourse of, (I say they) that is my
husband and brothers; For the singularity of my affections are such, that
though I have an ill memory, and could not if it were for my life relate word
for word of any discourse, if it be any thing long that I shall hear from
strangers, for I am the worst repeater of a story from strangers, or out of a
book in the World, when from my near friends (especially my Lord) whose
discourses are lively discriptions, I cannot forget any thing they say, such
deep impressions their words print in my brain, when I cannot remember one
discourse perfectly from others, were they holy sermons to save my soul. but as
I have said from a bare relation, I can conceive to my thinking every
particular part, and passage, as if I were a witness thereof, or an actor
therein; but many things, although I should never have heard of any such thing,
yet my natural reason will guide and discover to me, the right and the truth.
For put the case I see a watch, or any other invention, and none should tell
me how it was made, yet my natural reason would conceive how it was made, so in
natural things my natural reason will conceive them without being any ways
instructed; and so working a brain I have that many times on small objects or
subjects will raise up many several fancies, and opinions therein, from which
my discourse betwixt reason and those opinions will be produced; but the truth
is, I have more materials to build with, then ground to build on, whereby they
become useless, but I believe time will moulder them to dust, or accidents, as
sickness may destroy them, as dropsies may drown them, fevers may burn them,
consumptions may waste them, or griefs may wither them, or other employments
like usurpers may throw it out of my head, but as yet my head is fully
populated with divers opinions, and so many fancies are therein, as sometimes
they lie like a swarm of bees in a round heap, and sometimes they fly abroad
to gather honey from the sweet flowery rhetoric of my Lords discourse, and wax
from his wise judgement which they work into a comb making chapters therein.
But those that make these and the like idle objections against me either have
not read all my Epistles, and the rest of my books or understands them not, but
that is not my fault, but their unjust natures, to censure and condemn before
they examine or understand; Nay they do in somethings faulsely, ac cuse, and
maliciously break out of some of my Epistles some parts to throw against me,
which is most base and cruel to dismember my book tormenting it with spiteful
objections, misforming the truth with falsehood: but those that have noble and
generous souls will believe me, and those that have base and mechannick souls,
I care not what they say, and truly I would not have troubled my self in
striving to satisfy this present age which is very censorious; but fear the
future age wherein I hope to live, may be deceived, and I by false
constructions wronged; for I have observed that the ignorant, and malicious, do
strive to disturb, and obstruct all probable opinions, witty ingenuities,
honest industry, virtuous endeavours, harmless fancies, innocent pleasures,
and honourable fames although they become infamous thereby.
Readers I had forgotten to mention the objection, that there is no distinction
between a scholer, and a Philosopher, if they mean as being vulgarly called
both scholars
I answer a scholer is to be learned in other men's opinions, inventions and
actions, and a philosopher is to teach other men his opinions of nature, and to
demostrate the works of nature, so that a scholer is to learn a Philosopher to
teach, and if they say there is no distinction between a professed scholer, and a
professed philosopher, I am not of their opinion; for a professed scholer in
theology, is not a professed Philosopher; for Divines leave nature on the left
hand, and walk on the right to things supernatural and if they mean professed
scholars, as being bred at universities ( I answer) that I take not all those
that are bred at an University, and those that are learned to be professed
scholars, or those that are great Philosophers to be professed, unless they make
it their profession, as a professed Divine that hath taken Orders, or a professed
Physician that hath commenced Doctor, or professed Pleaders, or Lawyers that are
made Barresters, or Philosophers, that teach Scholars; but certainly there are
many that are very learned that are not professed, as being of that profession by
which they live.
Likewise an objection for my saying I have not read many Books; but I answer,
for not reading of many Authors, had I understood several Languages, as I do
not,, I have not had so much time; had I endeavoured to have been learned
threin, for learning requires close studies, long time, and labour.
Besides, our sex takes so much delight in dressing and adorning themselves, as
we for the most part make our gowns our books, our laces our lines, our
imbroderies our letters, and our dressings are the time of our study; and
instead of turning over solid leaves, we turn our hair into curls, and our sex
is as ambitious to show themselves to the eyes of the world, when finely dressed,
as Scholars do to express their learning to the ears of the world, when fully
fraught with Authors.
But as I have said my head was so full of my own naturai fancies, as it had
not room for strangers to board therein, and certainly natural reason is a
better tutor then education; for though education doth help natural reason to a
more sudden maturity, yet natural reason was the first educator; for natural
reason did first compose commonwealths, invented arts, and sciences, and if
natural reason have composed, invented and discovered, I know no reason, but
natural reason may find out what natural reason hath composed, invented, and
discovered, without the help of education; but some may say that education is
like money n put to use, which begets increase; I say it is true, but natural
reason is the principal, which without increase could not be, but in truth
natural reason, is both the principal and the increase, for natural reason
produces beneficial effects, and finds out the right and the truth, the wrong
and the falsehood of things, or causes; but to conclude, what education hath not
instructed me, natural Reason hath infor med me of many things.
Most Famously learned,
I Here present the sum of my works, not that I think wise School-men, and
industrious, laborious students should value my book for any worth, but to
receive it without a scorn, for the good encouragement of our sex, lest in time
we should grow irrational as idiots, by the (...) of our spirits, through the
careless neglects, and despisements of the masculine sex to the effeminate,
thinking it impossible we should have either learning or understanding, wit or
judgement, as if we had not rational souls as well as men, and we out of a
custom of dejectedness think so too, which makes us quit all all industry
towards profitable knowledge being employed only in looe, and petty
employments, which takes away not only our abilities towards arts, but higher
capacities in speculations, so as we are become like worms that only live in
the dull earth of ignorance, winding our selves sometimes out, by the help of
some refreshing rain of good educations which seldom is given us; for we are
kept like birds in cages to hop up and down in our houses, not suffered to fly
abroad to see the several changes of fortune, and the various humours, ordained
and created by nature; thus wanting the experiences of nature, we must needs
want the understanding and knowledge and so consequently prudence, a nd
invention of men: thus by an opinion, which I hope is but an erroneous one in
men, we are shut out of all power, and Authority by reason we are never
employed either in civil nor marshall affairs, our counsels are despised, and
laughed at, the best of our actions are trodden down with scorn, by the
over-weaning conceit men have of themselves and through a dispisement of us.
But I considering with my self, that if a right judgement, and a true
understanding, a respectful civility live any where, it must be in learned
Universities, where nature is best known, where truth is oftenest found, where
civility is most practised, and if I find not a resentment here, I am very
confident I shall find it no where, neither shall I think I deserve it, if you
approve not of me, but if I desserve not Praise, I am sure to receive so much
Courtship from this sage society, as to bury me in silence; thus I may have a
quiet grave, since not worthy a famous memory; but to lie entombed under the
dust of an University will be honour enough for me, and more then if I were
worshipped by the vulgar as a Deity. Wherefore if your wisdoms cannot give me
the Baize, let your charity strew me with Cypres; and who knows but after my
honourable burial, I may have a glorious resurrection in following ages, since
time brings strange and unusual things to pass, I mean unusual to men, though
not in nature: and I hope this action of mine, is not unnatural, though unusual
for a woman to present a Book to the University, nor impudence, for the action
is honest, although it seem vain-glorious, but if it be, I am to be pardoned,
since there is little difference between man and beast, but what ambition and
glory makes.
SOme say that my Book of Philosophy, it seems as if I had converst with
Des-Cartes or Master Hobbes, or both, or have frequented their studies, by
reading their works, but I cannot say but I have seen them both, but upon my
conscience I never spake to monsieur De Cartes in my lise, nor ever understood
what he said, for he spake no English, and I understand no other language, and
those times I saw him, which was twice at dinner with my Lord at Paris, he did
appear to me a man of the fewest words I ever heard. And for Master Hobbes, it
is true I have had the like good fortune to see him, and that very often with
my Lord at dinner, for I conversing seldom with any strangers, had no other
time to see those two famous Philosophers; yet I never heard Master Hobbes to
my best remembrance treat, or discourse of Philosophy, nor I never spake to
Master Hobbes twenty words in my life, I cannot say I did not ask him a
question, for when I was in London I meet him, and told him as truly I was very
glad to see him, and asked him if he would please to do me that honour to stay
at dinner, but he with great civility refused me, as having some business,
which I suppose required his absence.
And for their works, my own foolish fancies do so employ my time, as they will
not give me leave to read their books, for upon my conscience I never read more
of Mounsieur Des-Cartes then half his book of passion, and for Master Hobbes, I
never read more then a little book called De Civ, and that but once, nor never
had any body to read to me, as for their opinions, I cannot say I have not
heard of many of them. As the like of others, but upon my conscience not
thoroughly discoursed of, for I have heard the opinions of most Philosophers in
general, yet no otherw aies then if I should see a man, but neither know his
estate, quality, capacity, or natural disposition, thus upon my conscience is a
truth, not only in these two Philosophers, but all Philosophers, and not only
Philosophers, but all their learned men, so that I am no otherwise learned in
writers works, or other opinions then those that only learned the terms of
arts, and sciences, but know no more. The like they may say of Physicians, as
of Philosophers, when they read my opinions of diseases; it is true I have
converst with Physicians more then any other learned profession, yet not so
much as to increase my understanding, although more then was advantageous for
my health, indeed I have been the worst Physician to my self; besides wise
learned men think it a discredit to discourse learnedly to ignorant women, and
many learned men speak most commonly to women, as women do to children
nonsense, as thinking they understand not any thing, or else like those that
are of another Language speak such gibberish, to those they would have
understood that they understand not themselves yet think those they speak to do
conceive them, as if ignorance was bound to understand nonsense, that is not to
be understood; but I desire my Readers, or censurers; for some will censure
that have not read, or at least not understood me, that I did never take nor
steal any opinion, or argument from any other as my own, nor never will, and if
I hit or light upon the same, it is mere chance. Tis true, I have mentioned
many opinions, but not as my own opinions or arguments, but rather, (...)
civilly I have been opposite to those opinions I have heard of, and I make no
question but if my Readers will take the pains to compare my writings to
others, and thoroughly examine them, they will I make no question, find great
difference; for though other Philosophy have treated of matter, form, and
motion, being the fundamental ground, of all all natural Philosophical
discourse, yet I believe not my way, nor I never read any book of diseases, or
medicines but Gerrards Herbal, which no question is a very rare book, and
cetainly discribes the tempers of herbs, fruits, and drugs very learnedly, but
I do verily (...) the learning lies more in the tempers then in the
applications; for I believe where one is rightly applied, forty are falsely
applied, and how shall it be otherways, unless he had studied the motions and
tempers of diseases; for one and the same diseases may be of several tempers,
and motions, wherefore one and the same simple will not cure one and the same
kind, or rather sort of disease; Wherefore I beseech my readers to be so
charitable, and just, as not to bury my works in the monuments of other
writers, but if they will bury them, let it be in their own dust, or oblivion,
for I had rather be forgotten, then scrape acquaintance, or insinuate my self
into others company, or brag of received favours, or take undeserved gifts, or
belie noble Benefactors, or to steal, although I were sure the theft would
never be discovered, and would make me live eternally.
But I have no acquaintance with old Authors, nor no familiarity with the
moderns, I have received no instructions by learning, and I never owned that
which was not justly my own, nor never stole that which was justly another,
neither have I retained, but plain truth to defend, and conscience towitnesse
for me.
Besides, I have heard that learning spoils the natural wit, and the fancies,
of others, drive the fancies out of our own brains, as enemies to the nature,
or at least troublesome guests that fill up all the rooms of the house.
This opinion, or rather a known truth, was a sufficient cause for me, neither
to read many Books, or hear arguments, or to dispute opinions, had I ever been
edicted to one, or accustomed to the other, by reason I found a natural
inclination, or motion in my own brain to fancies, and truly I am as all the
world is, partial, although perchance, or at least I hope not so much as many
are, yet enough to desire that my own fancies, and opinions might live in the
world, rather then the fancies and opinions of other men's in my brain.
MOst Noble Reader, let not partiality, or obstinacy weigh judgments scales,
but truth; wherefore if you weigh my Philosophical, and Physical opinions with
the ancient Philosophers, lay by the weakness, and incapacity of our sex; my
unexperienced age, my unpractised time, my ignorant studies, my faint
knowledge, and dim understanding to help to pair my discourse, with theirs, in
which scale there are learned studies, long experience, practised time, high
arguments, and School-disputations; Besides, they draw and make the large river
of their discourse from many several springs; mine only flows in little
Rivulets, from the natural spring in my own brain.
AN EPISTLE TO THE Reader, for my Book of Philosophy.
PErchance many that read this book, will hardly understand it, not but it may
be as rational, and as probable, as any that have writ before, but unless they
be contemplary persons, which are not many in our nation, especially in the
Protestant opinion, which live not Monastical lives, are not so curious, nor so
inquisitive, after nature, as to study that Science; Besides, they think it
unprofitable, bringing no advantage; but they are much mistaken, for that it is
a great insight to the knowledge of all Vegetables, Minerals, and Animals,
their constitutions, their sympathies, and antipathies, their extractions, and
applications which they apply, for health, and prolonging of life; Besides, the
study in this Science, brings them acquainted with the course of the stars and
planets, and the several tempers of the Climats, and the nature of the several
Soils, which is profitable in husbandry; then it is advantageous for the art of
Navigation, and Plantations, and many other things; but above all, this study
is a great delight, and pleases the curiosity of men's minds, it carries their
thoughts above vulgar and common Objects, it elevates their spirits to an
aspiring pitch; It gives room for the untired appetites of man, to walk or run
in, for so spacious it is, that it is beyond the compass of time; besides, it
gives pleasure in varieties, for infinite ways are sirawed with infinite
varieties, neither doth it bind up man to those strict rules as other
Sciances do, it gives them an honest liberty, and proves temperance is the
greatest pleasure in nature. Tis true, moral Philosophy is an excellent study,
but the doctrine is too strict for the practise, for it teaches more then can
be followed, and Theology is a glorious study, but the way is difficult and
dangerous, for though there are many paths, yet there is but one that leads to
heaven, and those that step awry fall into the Gulf of damnation, and the
deep study in this many times blinds the eyes, both of faith and reason, and
instead of uniting mankind with love, to live in peace, it makes discords with
controversies, raises up faction to uphold each-side, whose endless quarrels
are followed with such hatred, and fought with such malice and envy, and the
zeal spits so much blood, as if not only several parties would be rased out,
but the bulk of mankind; And to study Law, is to study dissention, to study
Logic is to study deceit, to make falsehood appear like truth; to study
Rhetoric is to study words more then sense, and many the like studies are more
painful then useful, more time lost then profit got, more tedious then
pleasant, more sophistry then truth. Indeed the Mathematics brings both profit
and pleasure to the life of man, it gives just measure and equal weight, it
makes all odd reckonings even, it sets all musical notes, it brings concord out
of discord, it gives diminution and extention; But as I said before, few or
none but Monastical men, which live contemplary lives, despising the vanities
of the world, next to the service of God, seek to be acquainted with nature,
and to observe the course of her works, yet in an humble and respectful manner,
as to admire her curiosity, and to glorify and adore the God of nature, for
the wonders they find by her works, and workings: for this reason, if I had
been so learned, I would have put my book into Latin, which is a general
language through all Europe, and not have writ it in my native Language, which
goes no further then the kingdom of England, wherein I fear my book will find
but little applause; because few therein study natural Philosophy, and what
they understand not, they cannot judge of, yet I believe all that read will
take upon them to give a censure, and what their weak brains is not capable to
reach at, their active tongues are capable to pull down, so that I fear me my
book will be lost in oblivion, or condemned by ignorance, unless some generous
disposition which hath a genius in natural Philosophy, and learned and eloquent
in the Latin tongue will translate my work; yet I had rather my book should
die in Oblivion, then to be divulged to disadvantage, and instead of clothing
it in a new garment, they will dismember the body of sense, as to put out the
natural eyes, and put in glass eyes in the place, or to cut off the legs, and
then set the body upon wooden stumps, but unless the Translator hath a genius
suitable to the Author of the Original, the Original will be disfigured with
mistakes; yet it is easier to translate prose then verse, for rimes, number,
and sense, are hard to match in several Languages, it is double labour, and
requires double capacity; for although Ovid and Dubartus were so happy as to
meet a Sylvester and a Sands, yet very few or no other had the like good
fortune in our Language: for this reason I would have turned my Atoms out of
verse into prose, and joined it to this book, but I finding my brain would be
like a river that is turned from its natural course, which will neither run so
smooth, swift, easy, nor free, when it is forced from its natural motion and
course, both which made me desist c.
I Must advertise my Readers that though I have writ difserent ways of one and
the same subject, yet not to obstruct, cross, or contradict; but I have used
the freedom, or taken the liberty to draw several works upon one ground, or
like as to build several rooms upon one foundation, likewise my desire was, to
express the several works that several motions make in printed figures, that
the sense of my opinions might be explained to the eye, as well as to the ear,
or conceivements of my Readers; but by reason the Painters and Cutters in this
Country cannot speak, nor understand English, nor I any other Language; which
reason persuaded me to let my Book be Printed without them, for though I might
have had such an Interpreter that could express gross material subjects, yet
none that were so learned in both Languages, as to express, and instruct them
to express by their art the figures of the fine, curious, subtle, and obscure
motions in nature, and to have them all done would have rather puzzled my
Readers, and confounded the sense of my opinions, then any ways have
advantaged the one, or informed the other.
Wherefore I must entreat my Readers to take a little more pains, and care in
the reading, and considering part.
I Desire my Readers to give me the same privilege to discourse in natural
Philosophy, as Scholars have in schools, which I have heard speak freely, and
boldly, without being condemned for Atheism; for they speak as natural
Philosophers, not as Divines: and since it is natural Philosophy, and not
Theology, I treat on, pray account me not an Atheist, but believe as I do in
God Almighty.
I Cannot think that the substance of infinite matter is only a body of dust,
such as small atoms, and that there is no solidity, but what they make, nor no
degrees, but what they compose, nor no change and variety, but as they move, as
only by fleeing about as dust and ashes, that are blown about with wind,
which me thinks should make such uncertainties, such disproportioned figures,
and confused creations, as there would be an infinite and eternal disorder. But
surely such wandering and confused figures could never produce such infinite
effects; such rare compositions, such various figures, such several kinds,
such constant continuance of each kind, such exact rules, such undissolvable
Laws, such fixed decrees, such order, such method, such life, such sense, such
faculties, such reason, such knowledge, such power, which makes me condemn the
general opinions of atoms, though not my particular opinions of the figures,
that the long atoms make air, the round water, the flat square earth; also that
all the other figures are partly severed from those; also the measure, and the
weight of atoms, of slime, flame, of burning, of quenching of fire, and of the
several motions, compositions, and composers in their creating and dissolving
of figures; also their wars and peace, their sympathies and antipathies, and
many the like; but this opinion of mine is, if the infinite, and eternal matter
are atoms, but I have considered that if the only matter were atoms, and that
every atom is of the same degree, and the same quantity, as well as of the
same matter; then every atom must be of a living substance, that is innate
matter, for else they could not move, but would be an infinite dull and
immoving body, for figures cannot make motion, unless motion be in the matter,
and it cannot be a motion that sets them at work without substance, for motion
cannot be without substance or produced therefrom, and if motion proceeds from
substance, that substance is moving innately, but if motion is nothing, then
every several nothings, which are called several motions, are gods to infinite
matter, and our stronger nothing, which is every stronger motion, is god to
every weaker nothing, which is every weaker motion; for if motion depend upon
nothing, every particular motion is absolute; but the old opinions of atoms
seems not so clear to my reason, as my own, and absolutely new opinions, which I
hear call my Philosophical opinions, which opinions seem to me to be most
probable, and these opinions are like Chemistry, that from a gross substance,
extract the substance and essence, and spirits of life, or knowledge which I
call the innated matter.
NAtural Philosophers in their opinions make three gods, the causer, the
worker, and the matter, as God, nature, and the Chaos, all three being eternal,
as the causer God was, is, and shall be, the worker, nature was, is, and shall
be, the matter, chaos was, is, and shall be, was ever, is present, and shall be
eternally, and whatsoever was in its self from all eternity, and shall be to
all eternity, is a God, but if they make them all but one thing, then they may
say there is but one God; but if they make them three distinct things, then
they make three Gods, for though they make them all one in unity, yet not in
property, but God is like a Center, from whom all infinites flow, as from him,
and through him, and to him, his infinite knowledge knows all past, present,
and what is to come, and is a fixed instant.
THE TEXT TO MY Natural Sermon.
I As the preacher of nature, do take my text out of natural observance, and
contemplation, I begin from the first chapter, which is the only, and infinite
matter, and conclude in the last which is eternity.
But I desire my noble Readers to hear me with so much patience, or be so just
to me as to observe, that though my text is common, for who hath not heard of
the first matter? and my application old, for what is older then eternity?
Yet that my arguments, and proofs are new; for what ancient Philosophers have
preached after my way? wherefore most industrious and ingenious students, cast
me not out of your Schools, nor condemn my opinions, out of a dispisement of my
sex; for though nature hath made the active strength of the effeminat sex
weaker then the masculine, yet perchance she may elevate some fancies, and
create some opinions, as sublime, and probable in effeminate brains as in
Wherefore it were unjust to condemn the probable particulars for the errors
of the generality; and if you speak or think me too vainglorious in pleading in
my own cause, it may be thought you are irregular, and if I should not plead
for my self in a just cause, it may be thought I were not a right begotten
daughter of nature, but a monster produced by her escapes, or defects; for
every true child of nature will require its just inheritance.
The first cause is matter.
The second is Motion.
The third is figure
which produces all natural effects.
Nature is matter, form, and motion, all these being as it were but one thing;
matter is the body of nature, form is the shape of nature and motion.
The spirits of nature, which is the life of nature, and the several motions
are the several actions of nature.
The several figures are the several postures of nature, and the several parts,
the several members of nature.
THERE is no first matter, nor first Motion; for matter and motion are
infinite, and being infinite, must consequently be Eternal; and though but one
matter, yet there is no such thing, as the whole matter, that is, as one should
say, All. And though there is but one kind of matter, yet there are infinite
degrees of matter, as thinner and thicker, softer and harder, weightier, and
lighter; and as there is but one matter, so there is but one motion, yet there
are infinite degrees of motion, as swifter and slower; and infinite changes of
motion; And although there is but one matter, yet there are infinite of parts
in that matter, and so infinits of Figures: if infinite figures, infinite
sizes; if infinite sizes, infinite degrees of bigness, and infinite degrees of
smallness, infinite thickness, infinite thinnesle, infinite lightness,
infinite weightinesse; if infinite degrees of motion, infinite degrees of
strengths; if infinite degrees of strengths, infinite degrees of power, and
infinite degrees of knowledge, and infinite degrees of sense.
Chap. 2. Of the Form and the Mind. I mean of Form, dull Matter.
AS I said, there is but one Matter, thinner and thicker which is the Form, and
the Mind, that is, Matter moving, or Matter moved; likewise there is but one
motion, though flower or swifter moving several ways; but the slower or weaker
motions are no less motion, then the stronger or swifter. So Matter that is is
thinnest or thickest, softest or hardest, yet is but one matter; for if it were
divided by digrees, until it came to an Atom, that Atom would still be the
same matter, as well as the greatest bulk. But we cannot say smallest, or
biggest,, thinnest, softest or hardest it Infinite.
Chap. 3. Eternal matter.
THat matter which was solid, and weighty from all Eternity, may be so
eternally; and what was spungie, and light from all Eternity, may be so
eternally; and what had innate motion from Eternity, may be so eternally; and
what was dull without innate motion from Eternity, may be so eternally: for if
the degrees could change, then there might be all thin, and no thick, or all
thick, and no (...) all hard, no soft, and fluid, or all fluid, and no
solidity. For (...) contracting and dilating may bring and join parts together,
or separate parts asunder, yet those parts shall not be any other ways, then
by Nature they were.
Chap. 4. Of Infinite matter.
INfinite matter cannot have exact Form, or Figure, because it hath no Limits:
but being divided by motion into several parts, those Parts may have perfect
Figures, so long as those Figures last; yet these parts cannot be taken from
the Infinite Body. And though parts may be divided in the Body Infinite, and
joined several ways, yet Infinite can neither be added, nor diminished; yet
division is as infinite as the matter divided.
Chap. 5. No proportion in Nature.
IN Nature there is no such thing, as Number or Quantity; for Number, and
Quantity have only reference to division: neither is there any such thing as
time in Eternity; for Time hath no reference but to the Present, if there be
any such thing as Present.
Chap. 6. Of one Kind of Matter.
ALthough there may be infinite degrees of matter, yet the Nature, and kind of
matter is finite: for Infinite of several kinds of matter would make a
Chap. 7. Of Infinite knowledge.
THere can be no absolute Knowledge, if infinite degrees of Knowledge; nor no
absolute power, if there be infinite degrees of strength: nor present, if
infinite degrees of motion.
Chap. 8. No Judge in Nature.
NO Entreaty, nor Petition can persuade Nature, nor any Bribes can corrupt, or
alter the course of nature. Justly there can be no complaints made against
Nature, nor to Nature. Nature can give no redress. There are no Appeals can be
made, nor Causes determined, because Nature is infinite, and eternal: for
Infinite cannot be confined, or prescribed, settled, ruled, or disposed, because
the Effects are sa infinite as the Causes: and what is infinite, hath no
absolute power: for what is absolute, is finite.
Finite cannot tell how Infinite doth flow,
Nor how infinite matter moves to and fro.
For infinite of Knowledge cannot guess
Of infinite of matter, more, or less:
Nor infinite of Causes cannot find
The infinite Effects of every Kind.
Chap. 9. Of Perfection.
IN infinite can no perfection be,
For why? Perfection is in Unity.
In infinite no union can combine,
For that has neither Number, point nor Line; Some think there was a (...)
(...) confused Heap.
Though infinite can have no Figure,
Yet not lie all confused in heaps together
Chap. 10. Of Inequalities.
IF infinites have infinite degrees,
And none alike to make Equalities.
As if a Hair be cut with curious Arts,
Innumerable but unequal parts,
And that not any part alike shall be,
How shall we join, to make them well agree?
If every one is like it self alone,
Three cannot be, unless three equal One.
If one, and one make two; and two, and two make four yet there must be two
equal ones to make two, and two equal two's to to make four. And as two and one
make three, yet there must be two equal ones joined to a single one, to make
three, or three equal single ones to join in three.
The like is in weight, and Measure, Motion and Strength.
Chap. 11. Of Unities.
IN infinite if infinite degrees,
Then those Degrees may meet in Unities.
And if one man should have the (...) of four,
Then four to equal him will be no more.
As if one Line should be in four parts cut,
Shall equal the same Line together put;
So two and one, though odd is theer;
Yet three and three shall equal be.
Like those that equal spaces backwards go,
To those that's forward, equals them we know.
Like Buckets in a Well if empty be,
As one descends, the other ascends, we see;
So Motions, though their cross, may well agree,
As oft in Music make a Harmony.
Chap. 12. There is no Vacuity.
IN Nature if Degrees may equal be,
All may be full, and no Vacuity.
As Boxes small, and smaller may contain,
So bigger, and bigger must there be again.
Infinite may run contracting, and dilating,
Still, still, by degrees without a separating.
Chap. 13. Of Thin, and Thick Matter.
THus may thin Matter into Solid run,
And by its motion;, make thick Matter turn
In several ways, and fashions, as it will,
Although dull Matter of it self lie still:
Tis not, that Solid Matter moves in Thin,
For that is dull, but thin which moves therein.
Like Marrow in the Bones, or Blood in Veins;
Or thinner matter which the blood contains.
Like Heat in Fire, the effect is straight to burn,
So Matter thin makes solid matter run.
Chap. 14. Of Vacuum.
IF Infinite inequality doth run, The Readers may take either Opinion.
Then must there be in Infinite Vacuum.
For what's unequal, cannot joined be
So close, but there will be Vacuity.
Chap. 15. The Unity of Nature.
NAture tends to Unity, being but of a kind of Matter, but the degrees of this
Matter being thinner, and thicker, softer, and harder, weightier, and lighter,
makes it, as it were, of different kind, when tis but different degrees: Like
several extractions, as it were out of one and the same thing; and when it
comes to such an Extract, it turns to Spirits, that is, to have an Innate
Chap. 16. Of Division.
THe several degrees of Matter cause Division by different motion, making
several Figures, erecting, and dissolving them, according as their matter
moves. This makes motion and Figure always to be in War, but not the matter;
for it is the several effects that disagree, but not the Causes: for the
Eternal matter is always in peace, as being not subject to change; Several
Motitions, and several Figures
but motion and Figure, being subject to Change, strive for Superiority: which
can never be, because subject to Change.
Chap. 17. The Order of Nature.
THe Reason, that there is not a Confusion in Nature, but an orderly Course
therein, is, the Eternal matter is always one, and the same: for though there
are Infinite degrees, yet the Nature of that Matter never alters. But all
variety is made according to the several Degrees, and the several degrees do
palliate and in some sense make an Equality in infinite; so as it is not the
several degrees of matter, that strive against each other, but several motions
drive them against one another.
Chap. 18. Of War, and no absolute Power.
THe Reason that all things make War upon one another, is, the several Not the
Matter, but the Degrees.
Degrees of matter, the contradiction of motion, and the Degrees, and the
advantage of the shapes of ( Not the (...) of Figures, but the manner of
shapes: which makes some shapes to have the advantage over others much bigger,
as a Mouse will kill an Elephant.
) Figures always striving.
Chap. 19. Of Power.
THere is no absolute Power, because Power is infinite, and the infiniteness
hinders the absolutenesse: for if there were an absolute power, there would be
no dispute: but because there is no absolute power, there would be no dispute;
but because there is no absolute power, therefore there be Disputes, and will
be eternally: for the several degrees of matter, motion, and Figure strive for
the Superiority, making Faction by ( Which is in Likeness.
) Sympathy, and Fraction, by ( Unlikenesse.
) Antipathy.
Chap. 20. Similizing the spirits, or Innate Matter.
THe Spirits, or Essences in Nature are like Quick-silver: for say it be fluid,
it will part into little Sphaerical Bodies, running about, though it be ne'er so
small a Quantity: and though they are Sphaerical, yet those Figures they make
by several, and subtle motion, may differ variously, and Infinitely.
This innate matter is a kind of god or gods to the dull part of matter,
having power to form it, as it please, and why may not every degree of Innate
matter be as several gods, and so a strong motion be a god to the weaker, and
so have an infinite, and Eternal Government? As we will compare motions to
Officers, or Magistrates. The Constable rules the Parish, the Mayor, the
Constable, the King the Mayor, and some Higher power the King: thus infinite
powers rule Eternity. Or again thus, the Constable rules the Hundred, the Major
rules the City, the King the kingdom, and Caesar the world.
Thus may dull matter over others rule,
According as 'tis* shaped by motions Tool. One Shape hath power over another;
one Mind knows more then another.
So Innate matter Governs by degree,
According as the stronger motions be.
Chap. 21. Of Operation.
ALL things in the world have an Operative power; which Operation is made by
Sympathetical motions Antipathetical motions, in several Figures. for the
assisting Operation is caused by one, the destructive Operation by another;
like Poison and cordials, the one kills, the other cures: but Operations are
infinite, as motions.
Chap. 22. Natural, or Sensivtie War.
ALL Natural War is caused either by a Sympathetical motion, or an
Antepathetical motion. For Natural War, and Peace proceed from
Self-preservation, which belongs only to the Figure; for nothing is annihilated
in Nature, but the particular prints, or several shapes that motion makes of
matter; which motion in every Figure strives to maintain what they have
created: for when some Figures destroyothers, it is for the maintenance or
security ofthemselves: and when the destruction is for, Food it is
Sympathetical motion, which makes a particular Appetite, or nourishment from
some Creatures to others; but an Antipathetical motion that makes the
Chap. 23. Of Annihilation.
THere can be no Annihilation in Nature: nor particular motions, and Figures,
because the matter remains that was the Cause of those Motions and Figures. As
for particular figures, although every part is separated that made such a
figure, yet it is not Annihilated; because those parts remain that made it. So
as it is not impossible but the same particular Figures may be erected by the
same motions, that joined those parts, and in the matter may repeat the same
motion eternally so by succession: and the same matter in a figure may be
erected and dispersed eternally. Thus the dispersing of the matter into
particular Either by Growth, or Sense, or Reason.
figures by an Alteration of motion, we call Death; and the joining of parts to
create a Figure, we call life. Death is a Separation, life is a Contraction.
Chap. 24. LIFE.
LIfe is the Extract, or spirit of common matter: (*) this extract For when
Matter comes to such a degree, it quickens.
is Agile, being always in motion; for the Thinness of this matter causes the
subtilty of the Quality, or property, which quality, or preporty is to work
upon all dull Matter.
This Essence, or life, which are Spirits of sense, move of themselves: for the
dull part of Matter moves not, but as it is moved thereby.
Their common motions are four.
Atractive. Retentive. Digestive. Expulsive.
Attractive is that which we call Growth, or youth. Retentive, That it begins
to move, and Motion is Life.
is that we call strength. Digestive is that we call Health, that is an equal
distribution of parts to parts, and agreeing of those spirits. Expulsive is
that which we call Death, or decay.
The Attractive spirits gather, and draw the materials together.
The Digestive spirits do cut and carve out every thing.
The Retentive do fit, and lay them in their proper places.
The Expulsive do pull down, and scatter them about.
Those spirits most commonly move according to the matter they work on. For in
spung and porous light matter, their motion is quick; in solid, and weighty,
their motion is slower. For the solid parts are not only dull, and immovable
of themselves, but they hinder and I mean when I say Obstruct, that it either
turns their motion another way or makes them move slower.
obstruct those Spirits of sense, and though they cut and pierce through all,
yet it is with more labour, and slower motion; for their motions change
according to the quantity and quality of that matter they meet with; for that
which is porous and spungy, the Figures that they form that matter in, are
sooner made, and sudenlier destroyed, then that which is more combustible. This
is the reason, Minerals last longer then Vegetables, and Animals, because that
matter is both tougher and harder to work on, then Vegetables and Animals are.
These Sensitive spirits we may similize to several workmen, being always
busily employed, removing, lifting, carrying, driving, drawing, digging, and
the like. And although these spirits are of substance thinner then dull matter,
yet they are stronger by reason of their subtility, and motion, which motion
gives them power: for they are of an acute quality, being the Vitriol, as it
were, of Nature, cut and divide all that opposes their way.
Now these spirits, though they be infinite, yet we cannot think them so gross
an infinite, as combustible matter, yet those thinner infinites may cut, and
carve the thicker infinites all into several figures: like as Aqua-fortis will
eat into the hardest iron, and divide it into small parts.
As I have said before, the spirits of life works according as the matter is,
for every thing is shaped according to the solidity of the matter; like as a
man which builds a house of such wood, which is tough, and strong, because he
knows otherwise it will break, by reason of the great weight they are to bear,
but to make laths, he takes his wood and cuts it thin, that the nails may the
easier pass through, so joining and fitting several sorts to proper uses to
build his house. Or like a Cook, when he's to raise a pie, must take stiff
Dough; for otherwise it will not only fall before it be finished, but it
cannot be raised, and to make the lids to cover his pie, he must use a softer
Paste, otherwise it will not roll thin; thus a stiff paste is not fit for a
lid, nor a thinner paste for to raise a Pie; it may make a Cake, or so. So the
spirits of life must make figures, as the matter is fit: and proper thereto, for
the figure of man or the like; the spirits of life take the solid and hard
matter for the I do not say that bones are the solid'st matter in Nature.
Bones: the Glutinous matter for the Sinews, Nerves, Muscles, and the like; and
the Oily matter, for Flesh, Fat, Marrow. So the fluid for Blood, and such like
matter. and the spirits themselves do give this dull matter, motion, not only
in the building of the figure, but to make the figure move when it is built.
Now the spirits of life, or lively spirits do not only move dull and immoving
matter, but makes that matter to move and work upon others; for some kind of
figures shall make As the figure of man.
another to resemble it self, though not just be as it self is made, but as the
shadow like the substance; for it works as a hand that is guided by another,
and not of its own strength: that is the reason, Arts have not so much
perfection as nature. The Copy is not so lively as the Original; for the
spirits of life move, and work of their own strength, and the dull matter by the
strength of the spirits.
Chap. 25. Of CHANGE.
THe Change of motion in several Figures makes all change and difference in the
World, and their several properties and effects thereto. And that which we call
Death, or corruption, is not All Motion (...) Life.
an absence of life, but an expulsive motion which doth annihilate those
figures, that erecting motion hath made. So death is an annihilation of the
Print, not of the Mould of figures; for the Moulds of those figures of
Mankind, Beast, or Plant, of all kinds whatsoever, shall never be annihilated
so long as motion and matter last, which may always be; for the mould of all
figures is in the power of motion, and the substance of matter.
Chap. 26. Of Youth, or Growth.
THus Spirits of sense work according to the substance of the matter: for if
the matter be porous and light, they form those figures quicker, and dissolve
them suddenly: But if their matter be solid and hard, they work slower, which
makes some figures longer ere they come to perfection, and not so easily
undone. And if their strength be too weak for the matter they work upon, as
wanting help, then the figure is imperfect, and misshapen, as we say. This is
the reason Animals and Vegetables, which are young, have not so great strength
as when they are full grown; because there are fewer spirits, and the materials
are loose and unsettled, not knocked close: But by degrees more spirits gather
together, which help to forward their work, bring in materials by food, settling
them by nourishment, carrying out by Evacuations that matter that is unuseful,
and that Rubbish and Chips, as I may say, which would hinder their motion. If
they bring in unuseful matter, their figure increases not, as we say, thrives
not. And if they carry out the principal materials, the figure decays, and
falls down. But those parts of matter which are not spirits, do not carry that
part of matter which is spirit, but these spirits carry the dull matter. Thus
the spirits, the innated matter, move in dull matter, and dull matter moves by
the spirits; and if the matter be fine, and not gross, which they build withal,
and their motion be regular, then the figure is beautiful and well
Chap. 27. Of Increasing.
THe reason that the corruption of one figure is the cause of making of another
of the same kind, is, not only, that it is of such a tempered matter that can
only make such a kind of figure; but that the spirits make figures according
to their strength: So that the spirits that are in the Seed, when they have I
mean the Figure of dull matter.
undone the figure they are in, by a general expulsion, which we call
corruption, they begin to create again another figure of the same kind, if no
greater power hinder it. For the matter that is proper, to make such like
figures, is fitted, or tempered to their strengths. So as the Temper of the
matter, and the strength of the spirits, are the Erectors of those figures
eternally. And the reason, that from one Seed, less, or more Numbers are
increased and raised, is, that though few begin the work, more will come to
their help; and as their numbers are increased, their figures are more, or
less, weaker, or stronger.
Chap. 28. Of Decay.
WHen Spirit of Life have created a Figure, and brought it As a plentiful Crop
or a great Brood.
to perfection; if they did not pull it down again, they would be idle, having
no work to do; and Idleness is against the nature of life, being a perpetual
motion. For as soon as a figure is perfected, the spirits generally move to an
expulsive motion. This is the reason, that Age hath not that strength as
fullgrowth: But like an old house falling down by degrees, shed their Hairs,
or Leaves, instead of Tiles, the Windows broke down, and stopped with Rubbish.
So Eyes in Animals grow hollow and dim. And when the Foundation of a house is
loose, every little wind shakes it. So when the Nerves being slack, and the
Muscles untied, and the Joints unhinged, the whole Body is weak, and tottering,
which we call Palsies: which Palsies, as the wind, shakes.
The Blood, as the Spring dries up, Rhumes, as Rain falls down, and Vapours,
as Dust, fly up.
Chap. 29. Of Dead, and Death.
DEad is, where there is a General Alteration of such Motion, as is proper to
such Figures. But Death is an Annihilation of that Print, or Figure, by an
Expulsive Motion: And as that Figure dissolves, the Spirits disperse about,
carrying their several burdens to the making of other Figures. Like as a house
that is ruined by Time, or spoiled by accident; the several Materials are
employed to other uses; sometimes to the building of an house again. But a
house is longer a building then a pulling down, by reason of the cutting,
carving, laying, carrying, placing, and fitting every part to make them join
together; so all the works of Nature are sooner dissolved then created.
Chap. 30. Of Local Shapes.
SOme Shapes have power over others, but 'tis not always in the size, or bulk
of the Figure, but in the manner of their Forms that give advantage, or
disadvantage. A little Mouse will run through the Snout of a great Elephant: A
little Fly will sting a great Figure to death; A Worm will wind through a
thick Body; The Lions force lies in his Claws; The Horses in his Hoof; The Dogs
in his Teeth; The Bulls in his Horns; and Mans in his Arms, and Hands; Birds
in their Bills, and Talons: And the manner of their Shapes gives them several
properties, or faculties. As the Shape of a Bird causes them to (...), a Worm
to creep, the Shape of a Beast to run, the Shape of Fish to swim; yet some fly
swifter, and higher then others, as their Wings are made: So some run nimbler
then others, according as their Limbs are made; and some swim glider then
others, according as their Fins are made. But Man surpasses the shape of all
other Creatures; because he hath a part, as it were, of every shape. But the
same motion, and the same matter without the shape, could not give such
External Properties; since all Internal Properties are wrought out of dull
matter. So as it is their shapes, joined with such motions proper thereunto,
that gives strength, and Agileness. But the Internal Qualities may be alike in
every figure; because Rational Spirits work not upon dull matter, but figures
Chap. 31. The Visible Motion in Animals, Vegetables, and Minerals.
THe external motions of Animals are, running, turning, winding, tumbling,
leaping, jumping, shoving, throwing, darting, climbing, creeping, drawing,
heaving, lifting, carrying, holding, or staying, piercing, digging, flying,
swimming, diving. The Internal motion, is, contriving, directing, examining,
comparing, or judging, contemplating, or reasoning, approving or disapproving,
resolving. From whence arise all the Passions, and several Dispositions. These,
and the like, are the visible Internal motions in Animals.
The Internal motions of Vegetables, and Minerals, are in operation; As,
contracting, dilating; which is Attractive, Retentive, Digestive, Expulsive.
The Vegetables External motion, is, increasing, decreasing, that is, enlarging,
or lasting; although there may be matter not moving, yet there is no matter,
which is not moved.
Chap. 32. Of the Working of several Motions of Nature.
MOtions do work according as they find
Matter, that's fit, and proper for each kind.
Sensitive Spirits work not all one way,
But as the matter is, they cut, carve, lay.
Joining together Matter, solid Light,
And build and form some figures straight upright;
Or make them bending, and so jutting out:
And some are large, and strong, and big about.
And some are thick, and hard, and close unite;
Others are flat, and low, and loose, and light.
But when they meet with matter, fine, and thin,
Then they do weave, as Spiders when they spin:
All that is woven is soft, smooth, thin things,
As flowery Vegetables, and Animal skins.
Observe the Grain of every thing, you'll see,
Like inter-woven Threads lye evenly.
And like to Diaper, and Damask wrought,
In several works, that for our Table's bought.
Or like to Carpets which the Persian made,
Or Satin smooth, which is the Florence Trade.
Some matter they engrave, like Ring, and Seal,
Which is the stamp of Natures Common-weal.
'Tis Natures Arms, where she doth print
On all her Works, as Coin that's in the Mint.
Some several sorts they join together glu'd.
As matter solid, with some that's fluid.
Like to the Earthly ball, where some are mixed
Of several sorts, although not fixed.
For though the Figure of the Earth may last
Longer then others; yet at last may waste.
And so the Sun, and Moon, and Planets all,
Like other Figures, at the last may fall.
The Matter's still the same, but motion may
Alter it into Figures every way:
Yet keep the property, to make such kind
Of Figures fit, which Motion out can find.
Thus may the Fgures change, if Motion hurls
That Matter of her ways, for other Worlds.
Of the Mind.
THere is a degree of stronger Spirits then the sensitive Spirits: These
degrees are visible to us.
as it were the Essence of Spirits; as the Spirit of Spirits, This is the
Mind, or Soul of Animals. For as the sensitive Spirits are a weak knowledge, so
this is a stronger knowledge. As to similize them, I may say, there is as much
difference betwixt them, as Aqua Fortis, to ordinary Vitriol. These Rational
Spirits, as I may call them, work not upon dull matter, as the Sensitive
Spirits do; but only move in measure, and number, which make Figures; which
Figures are Thoughts, as Memory, Understanding, Imaginations, or Fancy, and
Remembrance and Will.
Thus these Spirits moving in measure, casting, and placing themselves into
Figures make a Consort, and Harmony by Numbers.
Where the greater Quantity, or Number, are together of Dancing is a measured
those rational spirits, the more variety of Figure is made by their several
motions, they dance several dances according to their Company.
Chap. 34. Of their several Dances, or Figures.
WHat Object soever is presented unto them by the senses, they strait dance
themselves into that figure; this is Memory. And when they dance the same
figure without the help of the outward object, this is Remembrance, when they
dance the figures of their own invention, (as I may say) then that is
imagination or Fancy. Understanding is, when they dance perfectly (as I may
say) not to miss the least part of those figures that are brought through the
senses. Will is to choose a dance, that is to move as they please, and not as
they are persuaded by the sensitive spirits. But when their motion and measures
be not regular, or their quantity or numbers sufficient to make the figures
perfect, then is the mind weak and infirm, (as I may say) they dance out of
time and measure. But where the greatest number of these, or quantity of these
Essences are met, and joined in the most regular motion, there is the clearest
understanding, the deepest Judgment, the perfectest knowledge, the finest
Fancies, the more Imagination, the stronger memory, the obstinatest will.
But sometimes their motions may be regular; but society is so small, so as they
cannot change into so many several figures: then we say he hath a weak mind,
or a poor soul. But be their quantity or numbers few or great, yet if they move
confusedly, and out of order, we say the mind is distracted. And the reason
the mind, or soul is improvable, or decayable, is, that the quantity or
numbers are increaseable, or decreaseable, and their motions regular, and
A Fever in the Body is the same motion among the sensitive spirits, as
madness is in the mind amongst the rational Spirits. So likewise pain in the
Body is like those motions, that make grief in the mind. So pleasure in the
body is the like motions, as make delight, and joy in the mind, all Convulsive
motions in the Body, are like the motions that cause Fear in the mind. All
Expulsive motions amongst the rational spirits, are a dispersing their society;
As Expulsity in the Body, is the dispersing of dull matter by the sensitive
All Drugs have an Opposite motion to the matter they work on, working by an
expulsive motion; and if they move strongly, having great quantity of spirits
together in a little dull matter, they do not only cast out superfluous
matter, but pull down the very materials of a figure. But all Cordials have a
Sympathetical motion to the matter they meet, giving strength by their help to
those spirits they find tired: (as one may say) that it is to be over-power'd
by opposite motions in dull Matter.
Chap. 35. The Sympathy, and Antipathy of Spirits.
PLeasure, and delight, discontent, and sorrow, which is Love, and hate, is
like light, and darkness; the one is a quick, equal, and free motion; the
other is a slow, irregular, and obstructed motion. When there is the like
motion of Rational Spirits in opposite figures, then there is a like
understanding, and disposition. Just as when there is the like Motion in the
sensitive spirits; then there is the like constitution of body. So when there
is the like quantity laid in the same Symmetry, then the figures agree in the
same proportions, and Lineaments of Figures.
The reason, that the rational spirits in one Figure, are delighted with the
outward form of another Figure, is, that the motions of those sensitive
Spirits, which move in that figure, agree with the motion of the rational
spirits in the other. This is love of beauty; And when the sensitive motions
alter in the figure of the body, and the beauty decays, then the motion of
rational spirits alter, and the love of godliness ceases. If the motion of the
rational spirits are cross to the motion of the sensitive spirits, in opposite
figures, then it is dislike. So if the motion be just cross and contrary, of
the rational spirits in opposite figures, it is hate; but if they agree, it is
But these Sympathies, which are made only by a likeness of motions without an
intermixture, last not long; because those spirits are at a distance, changing
their motion without the knowledge, or consent of either side. But the way that
the rational spirits intermix, is, through the Organs of the body, especially
the eyes, and Ears, which are the common doors, which let the spirits out, and
in. For the vocal, and verbal motion from the mouth, carry the spirits through
the ears down to Heart, where love and hate is lodged. And the spirits from
the eyes issue out in Beams, and Rays; as from the Sun, which heat, or scorch
Scorching is, when the Motioh is too quick.
the heart, which either raise a fruitful crop of love, making the ground
fertile, or dries it so much, as makes it insipid, that nothing of good will
grow there, unless stinking weeds of Hate: But if the ground be fertile,
although every Crop is not so rich, as some, yet it never grows barren, unless
they take out the strength with too much kindness; As the old proverb, they
kill with too much kindness; which murder is seldom committed. But the
rational spirits That is, when there come so many spirits, as they disagree.
pressing upon one another.
are apt to take Surfeit, as well as sensitive spirits, which makes love, and
Good-will, so often to be ill rewarded, neglected, and disdained.
Chap. 36. The Sympathy of Sensitive, and Rational spirits in one Figure.
THere is a strong Sympathy, and agreement, or Affection (as I may say) betwixt
the rational spirits, and the sensitive spirits joined in one figure: like
Fellow-labourers that assist one another, to help to finish their work. For
when they disagree, as the rational spirits will move one way sometimes, and
the sensitive spirits another; that is, when reason strives to abate the
appetite of the Senses; yet it is by a loving direction, rather to admonish
them by a gentle contrary motion for them to imitate, and follow in the like
motions; yet it is, as they always agree at last; Like the Father and the Son.
For though the father rules by command, and the Son obeies through obedience,
yet the father out of love to his son, as willing to please him, submits to his
delight, although it is against his liking; Those degrees that are nearest,
have the greatest Sympathy
So the rational spirits oftimes agree with the motions of the sensitive
spirits, although they would move another way.
Chap. 37. The Sympathy of the Rational and Sensitive Spirits, to the Fgure
they make, and inhabit.
ALL the External motion in a Figure, is, by the sensitive spirits; and all the
internal, by the rational spirits: and and when the rational and sensitive
spirits, disagree in opposite figures, by contrary motion, they oft war upon
one another; which to defend, the sensitive Spirits and rational spirits, use
all their force, and power in either Figure; to defend, or to assault, to
succour, or to destroy, through an aversion made by contrary motions in each
Now the rational spirits do not only choose the materials for their defence,
or assault, but do direct the sensitive spirits in the management thereof; and
according to the strength of the spirits of either side, the victory is gained,
or lost. If the Body be weak, there is like sensitive spirit, if the direction
be not advantageous, there is less rational spirit. But many times the
Alacrity of the rational and sensitive spirits, made by moving in a regular
motion, overcoms the greater numbers, being in a disordered motion. Thus what
is lost by Scarcity, is regained by Conformity and Unity.
Chap. 38. Pleasure, and Pain.
ALL Evacuations have an expulsive motion; If the Expulsive motion is regular,
'tis Pleasure, if irregular, 'tis pain. Indeed, all Irregular and cross
motion, is Pain; all regular motion is pleasure, and delight, being Harmony of
Motion, or a discord of Motion.
Chap. 39. Of the Mind.
IMagine the rational Essence, or spirits, like little spherical Bobdies of
Quick-silver several ways Like Chessmen, Table-men, Nine-pins, or the like.
placing themselves in several figures, sometimes moving in measure, and in
order: and sometimes out of order this Quick-silver to be the mind, and their
several postures made by motion, the passions and affections; or all that is
moving in a mind, to express those several motions, is only to be done by
guess, not by knowledge, as some few will I guess at Love is, when they move
in equal number, and even measure. Hate is an opposite motion: Fear is, when
those small bodies tumble on a heap together without order. Anger is, when they
move without measure, and in no uniform Figure. Inconstancy is, when they move
swiftly several ways. Constancy is a circular motion, doubt, and suspicion,
and jealousy, are when those small bodies move with the odd numbers. Hope is
when those small bodies move like wilde-Geese, one after another. Admiration
is, when those Spherical bodies gather close together, knitting so, as to make
such a circular figure; and one is to stand for a Center or point in the midst.
Humility is a creeping motion. Joy is a hopping, skipping motion. Ambition is a
lofty motion, as to move upwards, or I say higher for expressions sake.
higher then other motions. Coveting, or Ambition is like a flying motion,
moving in several Figures like that which they covet for; if they covet for
Fame, they put themselves into such Figures, as Letters do, that express
words, which words are such praises as they would have, or such Figure as they
would have Statues cut, or Pictures drawn: But all their motion which they
make, is according to those Figures with which they sympathize and agree:
besides, their motion and figures are like the sound of Music; though the
notes differ, the cords agree to make a harmony: so several Symmetries make a
perfect Figure, several figures make a just number, and several quantities or
proportions make a just weight, and several Lines make an even measure: thus
equal may be made out of Divisions eternally, and infinitely. And because the
figures and motions of the infinite Spirits which they move and make are
infinite, I cannot give a final description: besides, their motion is so
subtle, curious, and intricate, as they are past finding out.
Some Natural motions work so curious fine,
None can perceive, unless an Eye divine.
Chap. 40. Of Thinking, or the Mind, and Thoughts.
ONE may think, and yet not of any particular thing; that is, one may have
sense, and not thoughts: For thoughts are when the mind takes a particular
notice of some outward Object, or inward Idea; But Thinking is only a sense
without any particular notice. As for example; Those that are in a great fear,
and are amazed, the mind is in confused sense, without any particular
thoughts: but when the mind is out of that amaze, it fixes it self on
Particulars, and then have thoughts of past danger; but the mind can have no
particular thought of the Amaze; for the mind cannot call to mind that which
was not.
Likewise when we are asleep, the Mind is not out of the Body, nor the motion
that makes the sense of the mind ceased, which is Thinking; but the motion that
makes the thoughts therein work upon particulars. Thus the mind may be without
thoughts, but thoughts cannot be without the mind: yet thoughts go out of the
mind very oft, that is, such a motion to such a thing is ceased; and when that
motion is made again, it returns. Thus thinking is the mind, and thoughts the
effect thereof: Thinking is an equal motion without a figure, or, as when we
feel Heat, and see no fire.
Chap. 41. Of the Motions of the Spirits.
IF it be, as probably it is, that all sensitive spirits live in dull matter; so
rational spirits live in sensitive spirits, according to the shape of those
Figures that the sencitive spirits form them.
The rational spirits by moving several ways, may make several kinds of
knowledge, and according to the motions of the sensitive spirits in their
several figures they make, though the spirits may be the same, yet their
several motions may be unknown to each other. Like as a point, that writes upon
a Table-book, which when the Letter that was (...) thereon, is rubbed out, the
Table is as plain, as if there were never any letter thereon; but though the
letters are out, yet the Tablebook, and in Pen remain. So although this Motion
is gone, the spirit, and matter remain; But if those spirits make other kinds
of motions, like other kinds of Letters, or Language, those Motions understand
not the first, nor the first understands not them, being as several Languages.
Even so it may be in a sound; for that kind of knowledge the Figure had in the
sound, which is an alteration of the motion of the rational spirits, caused by
an alteration of the motion of the sensitive spirits in dull matter: And by
these disorderly motions, other motions are rubbed out of the Table-book, which
is the matter that was moved. But if the same kind of letters be writ in the
same place again; that is, when the spirits move in the same motion, then the
same knowledge is in that figure, as it was before; the other kind of
knowledge, which was made by other kind of motion, is rubbed out, which several
knowledge is no more known to each other, then several Languages by unlearned
men. And as Language is still Language, though not understood, so knowledge is
still knowledge, although not general; but if they be that we call dead, then
those letters that were rubbed out, were never writ again; which is, the same
knowledge never returns into the same figures.
Thus the spirits of knowledge, or the knowledge of spirits, which is their
several motions, may be ignorant and unacquainted with each other: that is,
that some motion may not know how other motions move, not only in several
spirits, but in one and the same spirit; no more then in every Effect can know
their cause: and motion is but the effect of the Spirits, which spirits are a
thin subtle matter: for there would be no motion if there were no matter; for
no thing can move: but there may be matter without Self-motion; but not
self-motion without matter.
Matter prime knows not what effects shall be,
Or how their several motions will agree.
Because Nothing can be made or known absolute out of Infinite and Eternal.
tis infinite, and so doth move
Eternally, in which no thing can prove.
For infinite doth not in compass lye,
Nor hath Eternal lines to measure by.
Knowledge is there none, to comprehend
That which hath no beginning, nor no end.
Perfect knowledge comprises all can be,
But nothing can comprise Eternity.
Destiny and Fates, or what the like we call,
In infinites they no power have at all.
Nature hath Generosity enough to give
All figures ease, whilst in that Form they live;
But motion which innated matter is,
By running cross, each several pains it gives.
Chap. 42. Of the Creation of the Animal Figure.
THe reason, Though it may mave oMotions, yet not the Animal Motion.
that the sensitive spirits, when they begin to create an animal figure, the
figure that is created feels it not, until the model befinished, that is, it
cannot have an animal motion, until it hath an animal figure; for it is the
shape which gives it local motion? and after the Fabric is built, they begin
to furnish it with The Figure might be without an Animal Motion, but an Animal
motion cannot be until there is an Animal Figure.
strength, and enlarge it with growth, and the rational spirit which inhabits
it chooses his room, which is the Head; And although some rational spirits
were from the first creating it, yet had not such motions, as when created:
besides, at first they have not so much company, as to make so much change, as
to take parts, like instruments of Music, which cannot make such division upon
few strings as upon more. The next, the figure being weak, their motions cannot
be strong; besides, before the figure is enlarged by growth, they want room to
move in. This is the reason, that new-born Animals seem to have no knowledge,
especially Man; because the spirits do neither move so strong, nor have such
variety of change, for want of company to make a consort. Yet some animals have
more knowledge then others, by reason of their strength, as all beasts know
their dams, and run to their Dugs, and know how to suck as soon as they are
born; and birds and children, and the like weak Creatures, such do not.
But the spirits of sense give them strength, and the spirits of reason do
direct them to their food, Which food is when such Materials are not proper for
such a Figure.
and the spirits of sense gave them Taste, and (...), and the spirits of reason
choose their meat: for all Animal Creatures are not of one diet, for that which
will nourish one, will destroy another.
Chap. 43. The gathering of Spirits.
IF the rational spirits should enter into a figure newly created, altogether,
and not by degrees, a Child (for example) would have as much understanding,
and knowledge in the womb, or when it is new-born, as when it is enlarged and
fully grown. But we find by experience there are several sorts and degrees of
knowledge and understanding, by the recourse of spirits: which is the reason,
some figures have greater proportion of understanding and knowledge, and sooner
then others; yet it is increased by degrees, according as rational spirits
increase. Like as children, they must get strength before they can go. So
Learning and experience increase rational spirits, as Food the sensitive: But
experience and Learning is not always tied to the ear; for every Organ and
Pore of the body is as several doors to let them in and out: For the rational
spirits living with the sensitive spirits, come in, and go out with them, but
not in equal proportion, but sometimes more, sometimes fewer: this makes
understanding more perfect in Health then in sickness, and in our middle age,
more then in the latter age: For in age and sickness there is more carried
out, then brought in. This is the reason, Children have not such understanding,
but their reason increases with their years. But the resional spirits may be
similized The greater the number is, the more variety of Motion is made, which
makes Figures in the brain.
to a company of Good-fellows, which have pointed a meeting; and the company
coming from several places, makes their time the longer ere their numbers are
completed, though many a brain is disappointed; but in some figures the rooms
are not commodious to move in, made in their Creation, for want of help: those
are Changelings, Innocents, or Natural Fools.
The rational spirits seem most to delight in spungie soft and liquid matter;
as in the Blood, Brain, Nerves, and in Vegetables; as not only being nearest
to their own nature, but having more room to move in. This makes the rational
spirits to choose the Head in Animals, for their chief room to dance their
Figures in: in Animal Shapes
for the Head is the biggest place that hath the spungy Materials; thus as soon
as a figure is created, those rational Spirits choose a Room.
Chap. 44. The moving of Innate matter.
THough Motion makes knowledge, yet the spirits give motion: for those Spirits,
or Essences, are the Guiders, Governors, Directers; the Motions are but their
Instruments, the Spirits are the Cause, motion but an Effect therefrom: For
that thin matter which is spirits, can alter the motion, but motion cannot
alter the matter, or nature of those Essences, or spirits; so as the same
spirits may be in a body, but not one and the same knowledge, because not the
same motion, that made that knowledge. As for example; how many several Touches
belong to the body? for every part of the body hath a several touch, which is a
several knowledge belonging to every several part; for every several part doth
not know, and feel every several touch. For when the head aches, the heel feels
it not, but only the Rational spirits which are free from the encumbrance of
dull matter, they are agile, and quick to take notice of every particular
touch, in, or on every part of the figure. The like motions of a pain in the
Body. The like motions of the Rational spirits, we call grief in the mind; and
to prove it is the like motion of the Rational Spirits to the sensitive, which
makes the knowledge of it, is, when the rational Spirits are busily moved with
some Fantasmes, if any thing touches the body, it is not known to the rational
spirits, because the rational spirits move not in such motion, as to make a
thought in the head, of the touch in the heel, which makes the thoughts to be
as senseless of that touch, as any other part of the body, that hath not such
pains made by such motions. And shall we say, there is no sense in the heel,
because no knowledge of it in the head? we may as well say, that when an Object
stands just before an eye that is blind, either by a contrary motion of the
thoughts inward, by some deep Contemplation, or otherwise: we may as well say
there is no outward object, because the rational spirits take no notice of that
Object; tis not, that the stronger motion stops the less, or the swifter, the
slower; for then the motions of the Planets wold stop one another course.
Some will say, what sense hath man, or any other Animal when they are dead? it
may be answered, that the Fignre, which is a body, may have sense, but not the
Animal; for that we call Animal, is such a tempered matter, joined in such a
figure, moving with such kind of motions; but when those motions do generally
alter, that are proper to an Animal, although the matter, and Figure remain,
yet it is no longer an Animal, because those motions that help it to make an
Animal are ceased So as the Animal can have no more knowledge of what kind of
sense the Figure hath (because it is no more an Animal) then an Animal, what
sense dust hath. And that there is the reason, that when any part is dead in an
Animal, if that those motions that belonged to the Animal, are ceased in that
part, which alter it from being a part of the Animal, and knows no more what
sense it hath, then if a living man should carry a dead man upon his shoulders,
what sense the dead man feels, whether any, or no.
Chap. 45. Of Matter, Motion, and Knowledge, or Understanding.
VVHatsoever hath an innate motion, hath knowledge; and what matter soever hath
this innate motion, is knowing,: but according to the several motions, are
several knowledges made; for knowledge lives in motion, as motion lives in
matter: for though the kind of matter never alters, yet the manner of motions
alters in that matter: and as motions alter, so knowledge differs, which makes
the several motions in several figures to give several knowledge. And where
there is a likeness of motion, there is a likeness of knowledge: As the
Appetite of Sensitive spirits, and the desire of rational spirits are alike
motions in several degrees of matter. And the touch in the heel, or any part of
the body else, is the like motion, as the thought thereof in the head; the one
is the motion of the sensitive spirits, the other in the rational spirits, as
touch from the sensitive spirits, for thought is only a strong touch, and
touch a weak thought. So sense is a weak knowledge, and knowledge a strong
sense, made by the degrees of the spirits: for Animal spirits are stronger (as
I said before) being of an higher extract (as I may say) in the Chemistry of
Nature, which makes the different degrees in knowledge, by the difference in
strengths and fineness, or subtlety of matter.
Chap. 46. Of the Animal Figure.
WHatsoever hath motion hath sensitive spirits; and what is there on earth that
is not wrought, or made into figures, and then undone again by these spirits?
so that all matter is moving, or moved by the movers; if so, all things have
sense, because all things have of these spirits in them; and if Sensitive
spirits, why not rational spirits? For there is as much infinite of every
several degree of matter, as if there were but one matter: for there is no
quantity in infinite; for. infinite is a continued thing. If so, who knows, but
Vegetables and Minerals may have some of those rational spirits, which is a
mind or soul in in them, as well as man? Only they want that Figure (with
such kind of motion proper thereunto) to express knowledge that way. For had
Vegetables and Minerals the same shape, made by such motions, as the sensitive
spirits create; then there might be wooden men, and iron beasts; for though
marks do not come in the same way, yet the same marks may come in, and be made
by the same motion; for the spirits are so subtle, as they can pass and repass
through the solidest matter. Thus there may be as many several and various
motions in Vegetables and Minerals, as in Animals; and as many internal figures
made by the rational spirits; only they want the Animal, to express it the
Animal way. And if their knowledge be not the same knowledge, but different
from the knowledge of Animals, by reason of their different figures, made by
other kind of motion on other tempered matter, yet it is knowledge. For shall
we say, A man doth not know, because he doth not know what another man knows,
or some higher power?
Chap. 47. What an Animal is.
AN Animal is that which we call sensitive spirit; that is, a figure that hath
local motion; that is, such a kind of figure with such kind of motions proper
thereunto. But when there is a general alteration of those motions in it, then
it is no more that we call Animal; because the local motion is altered; yet we
cannot knowingly say, it is not a sensitive Creature, so long as the figure
lasts: besides, when the figure is dissolved, yet every scattered part may have
sense, as long as any kind of motion is in it; and whatsoever hath an innate
motion, hath sense, either increasing or decreasing motion; but the sense is as
different as the motions therein, because those properties belonging to such a
figure are altered by other motions.
Chap. 48. Of the dispersing of the Rational Spirits.
SOme think, that the Rational spirits fly out of Animals, (or that Animal we
call Man) like a swarm of Bees, when they like not their hives, finding some
inconvenience, seek about for another habitation, or leave the body, like Rats,
when they find the house rotten, and ready to fall; Or scared away like Birds
from their Nest. But where should this Swarm, or Troop, or Flight, or Essences
go, unless they think this thin matter is an Essence, evaporates to nothing?
As I have said before, the difference of rational spirits, and sensitive
spirits, is, that the sensitive spirits make figures out of dull matter: The
rational spirits put themselves into figure, placing themselves with number,
and measure; this is the reason when Animals die, the External Form of that
Animal may be perfect, and the Internal motion of the spirits quite altered;
yet not absent, not dispersed until the Annihilating of the External Figure:
thus it is not the matter that alters, but the Motion and Form.
Some Figures are stronger built then others, which makes them last longer: for
some, their building is so weak, as they fall as soon as finished; like houses
that are built with stone, or Timber, although it might be a stone-house, or
timber-house, yet it may be built, not of such a sort of Stone, or such a sort
of Timber.
Chap. 49. Of the Senses.
THe Pores of the skin receive touch, as the eye light, the ear sound, the
nose scent, the tongue taste. Thus the spirits pass, and repast by the holes,
they pierce through the dull matter, carrying their several burdens out, and
in, yet it is neither the Burden, nor the Passage that makes the different
sense, but the different motion; ( To prove that it is the several Motion, is
that we shall have the same sense in our sleep, either to move pleasure or feel
) for if the motion that coms through the Pores of the Skin, were as the
motions which come from the Eye, Ear, Nose, Mouth, then the body might receive
sound, light, scent, Taste, all other as it doth touch.
Chap. 50. Of Motion that makes Light.
IF the same motion that is made in the Head did move the Heel, there would
appear a Light to the Sense of that part of the figure; unless they will make
such matter as the Brain to be infinite, and only in the head of an Animal.
Chap. 51. Optics.
THere may be such motion in the Brain, as to make Light, although the Sun
never came there to give the first motion: for two opposite motions may give a
light by Reflection, unless the Sun, and the Eye have a particular Motion from
all Eternity: As we say an Eternal Monopolor of such a kind of Motion as makes
Chap. 52. Of Motion, and Matter.
WHY may not Vegetables have Light, Sound, Taste, Touch, as well as Animals,
if the same kind of motion moves the same kind of matter in them? For who
knows, but the Sap in Vegetables may be of the same substance, and degree of
the Brain: And why may not all the senses be inherent in a figure, if the same
Motion moves the same matter within the figure, as such motion without the
Chap. 53. Of the Brain.
THe Brain in Animals is like Clouds, which are sometimes swelled full with
Vapour, and sometimes rarefied with Heat, and moved by the sensitive spirits to
several Objects, as the clouds are moved by the Wind to several places.
The Winds seem to be all Spirits, because they are so agile, and quick.
Chap. 54. Of Darkness.
TO prove that Darkness hath particular motions which make it, as well as
motion makes light, is that when some have used to have a light by them while
they sleep, will, as soon as the light goes out, awake; for if Darkness had
no motion, it would not strike upon the Opick Nerve. But as an equal motion
makes light, and a perturbed motion makes colour, which is between Light and
darkness: So darkness is an Opposite Motion to those motions that make light;
for though light is an equal motion, yet it is such a kind, or sort of Motion.
Chap. 55. Of the Sun.
WHY may not the Sun be of an higher Extract then the rational spirits, and be
like Glass, which is a high Extract in Chemistry, and so become a ( Like
) shining body? If so sure it hath a great knowledge; for the Sun seems to be
composed of pure spirits, without the mixture of dull matter; for the Motion is
quick, and subtle, as we may find by the effect of the light, and heat.
Chap. 56. Os the Clouds.
THe Clouds seem to be of such spungy, and porous Matter, as the Rain, and
Air, like the sensitive spirits that form, and move it, and the Sun the
Rational Spirit to give them knowledge; And as moist Vapours from the Stomach
rise, and gathering in the Brain, flow through the eyes: so do the Clouds send
forth, as from the Brain, the Vapours which do rise in showers.
Chap. 57. Of the Motion of the Planets.
THE Earth, Sun, Moon, the rest of Planets all
Are moved by that, we Vital Spirits cal.
And like to Animals, some move more slow,
And other some by quicker motion go.
And as some Creatures by their shapes do fly,
Some swim, some run, some creep, some rises high
So Planets by their shapes about do wind,
All being made, like Circles, round we find.
Chap. 58. The Motion of the Sea.
THe Sea's more quick, then fresher waters are,
The reason is, more Vital spirits are there.
And as the Planets move still round about,
So Seas do ebb and flow both in and out.
As Arrows fly up, far as strength them lend,
And then for want of strength do back descend:
So do the Seas in ebbes run back again,
For want of strength, their length for to maintain
But when they ebb, and flow, at certain times,
Is like the Lungs that draw, and breath out wind.
Just so do Seas draw back and then do flow,
As constant as the Lungs do to and fro:
Always in motion never lying still,
The empty place they leave, turn back to fill.
We may as well inquire of Nature, why Animals breath in such a space of Time,
as the Seas ebb and flow in such a space of Time.
MAny perchance will laugh in scorn at my opinion, and ask what reason I have
to think those things I have described should be made with such a kind of
Motion, my answer is, that I guess by the forms, I mean the figures, or shapes,
what the motion may be to produce them; for I see the figure of a four legged
Creature hath other motions then two legged Creatures, or then those Creatures
that have no legs; and I see some shape Creatures that can flee, by reason of
their figures, which is made proper to produce that kind of motion; for those
that are not made so, cannot do so. By this I think it probable that Internal
motions, are after the manner of External motions; for we may guess at the
cause by the effects, so by the figures of Snow, Frost, Hail, Rain, Vapor, and
the like, we may guess at other Internal, or external motions, that produced
their External figures, or alterations, and by the effects of light, darkness,
heat, cold, moisture, what manner of motions produced them; wherefore I know no
reason why any should condemn my opinions. But the custom of their breeding in
the Schools of Aristotle, and Socrates, and the rest of ancient Authors, or
else they consider not my opinions enough; for if they did, they might see as
much probability for mine, as any of their opinions; For though in natural
Philosophy there may be many touches found out by experiences, and experiments,
yet the Study is only conjecturally, and built upon probabilities, and until
probabilities be condemned by absolute and known truth, let them have a place
amongst the rest of probabilities, and be not so partial to contradict, as to
be unjust to me, take not away the right of my place because young; for though
age ought to have respect, yet not so as to do youth wrong, but I hope my new
born opinions will be nourished in Noble and learned Schools, and bred up with
industrious Students; but howsoever, I delight my self, for next to the finding
out of truths, the greatest pleasure in Study, is, to find out probabilities.
I make no question but after Ages will esteem this work of mine, but what
soever is new, is not received at the first with that good acceptance, by
reason it is utterly unknown unto them, and a newness, and an
unacquaintednesse makes the ignorance, but when time hath made acquaintance,
and a right understanding, and a right understanding will make a friendship
betwixt Fame and my Book.
CHAP. 59.
MAtter, Figure, and Motions, are the gods that Create fortune; For fortune is
nothing in it self but various motions gathered, or drawn to a point, which
point man only thinks it fixed upon him, but he is deceived, for it fixes upon
all other things; for if any thing comes, and rubs off the bark of a tree, or
breaks the tree, it is a miss-fortune to that tree, and if a house be built in
such a place, as to shelter a tree from great storms, or cold weather, it were
good fortune to that tree, and if a beast be hurt it is a miss-fortune to that
beast, or bird, and when a beast, or bird, is brought up for pleasure, or
delight, and not to work or be imprisoned, it is a good fortune to that beast,
or bird; but as I said before fortune is only various motions, drawn to a
point, and that point that comes from cross motions, we call bad fortune, and
those that come from Sympathetical motions we call good fortune, and there must
needs be Antipathetical Motions as well as Sympathetical Motions, since Motions
are so various.
But man, and for all that I know, all other things, are governed by outward
Objects, they rule, and we obey; for we do not rule and they Obey, but every
thing is led like dogs in a string, by a stronger power, Natural power.
but the outward power being invisible, makes us think, we set the rules, and
not the outward Causes, so that we are governed by that which is without us,
not that which is within us; for man hath no power over himself.
Chap. 60. Of time and Nature.
NO question but there is a time in Nature, for time is the Variation of
Nature, and nature is a producing Motion a multiplying figure, an endless
measure, a quantilesse substance, an indefaisable matter.
Chap. 61. Of Matter, Motion, and Figure.
AS I said before in my first part of my Book, that there is no first Matter,
nor no first Motion, because Eternal, and Infinite, yet there could be no
Motion, without matter; for Matter is the cause, Motion but the effect of
Matter, for there could be no motion unless there were Matter to be moved; But
there might be Matter, and Figure, without Motion, as an infinite, and eternal
dull lump; For I see no reason, but infinite might be without running forward,
or circle-wayes, if there were not several degrees of the only Matter, wherein
Motion is an Infinite Eternal effect of such a degree. Neither is it nonsense
to say, Figure is the effect of Matter; for though there is no Matter without
Figure, yet there could be no figure without Matter, wherefore Matter is the
prime cause of Figure, yet there could be no figure without matter, wherefore
matter is the prime cause of figure, but not figure of matter, for figure doth
not make matter, but matter figure, no more then the creature can make the
Creator; but a creature may make a figure. Thus although there is no first
matter, yet matter is the first cause of motion and figure, and all effects.
Although they are as infinite and Eternal, as matter it self, and when I say
Matter prime, I speak for distinction sake, which is the only Matter?
The innated Matter, is the soul of Nature.
The dull part of Matter, the Body.
And the infinite figures, are the infinite form of Nature.
And the several motions are the several actions of nature.
Chap. 62. Of Causes, and effects.
AS I have said before the effects are infinite, and eternal as the Causes,
because all effects lie in matter and motion, indeed in matter only; for
motion is but the effect of matter.
Wherefore all particular figures although dssiolvable yet is inherent in the
matter, and motion, as for example, if a man can draw the picture of a man, or
any thing else, although he never draws it, yet the Art is inherent in the man,
and the picture in the Art as long as the man lives, so as long as there is
matter, and motion, which was from all Eternity, and shall be eternally; the
effect will be so.
Chap. 63. Whether motion is a thing, or nothing, or can be Annihilated
SOme have opinion that Motion is nothing, but to my reason it is a thing; for
if matter, is a substance, a substance is a thing, and the motion, and matter
being unseparablely, united, makes it but one thing.
For as there could be no motion without such a degree, or extract of matter so
there could be no such degree or extract I say extract. because it is the
essence of matter.
of matter without motion, thus motion is a thing. But by reason particular
motions leave moving in such matters and figures, shall we say they are
deceased, dead, or become nothing; but say some, motions are accidents, and
accidents are nothing; but I say, all accidents live in substance, as all
effects in the causes, say some, when a man for example shakes his hand, and
when he leaves shaking, whether is that motion gone (say others) no where, for
that particular motion cease to be, say they.
I answer, that my reason tells me, it is neither fled away, nor ceased to be,
for it remains in the hand, and in that matter that created the hand, that is
in that, and the like innated matter, that is in the hand. But some will say,
the hand never moves so again, but I say the motion is never the less there,
they may as well say, when they have seen a Chest full of Gold, or the like,
and when their eyes are shut, or that they never see it more, that the Gold
doth not lie in the Chest, although the Gold may lie there eternally, or if
they should see it again, say it is not the same Gold. So likewise particular
motions are, but showed, not lost, or Annihilated: or say one should handle a
vessel often, that every time you handle the vessel, it is not the same touch,
vessel, or hand, and if you never touch the vessel again, that the hand,
vessel, or touch is annihilated.
But particular motion, as the vessels, or hand is but used, not annihilated,
for particular motions can be no more annihilated, then particular figures that
are dissolved and how, in reason can we say in reason particular figures are
Annihilated, when every part and parcel, grain, and atom, remains in infinite
matter, but some will say, when a house: for example, is pulled down, by taking
asunder the materials, that very figure of that house is annihilated; but my
opinion is, that it is not, for that very figure of that house remains in those
materials, and shall do eternally although those materials were dissolved into
Atoms, and every Ato me in a several place, part, or figure though infinite
figures should be made by those materials by several dissolutions and
Creations, yet those infinites would remain in those particular materials
eternally, and was there from all eternity; And if any of those figures be
rebuilt, or Created again, it is the same figure it was.
So likewise the motion of the hand which I said for example, if the same hand
moves after the same manner, it is the same motion that moved the hand before;
so it may make infinite repetitions; thus one and the same motion may move
eternally, and rest from moving, and yet have a being.
Chap. 64. Of Motions.
THere are millions of several motions which agree to the making of each
figure, and millions of several motions are knit together; for the general
motion of that are figure, as if every figure had a commonwealth of several
Motions working to the subsistence of the figure, and several sorts of motions,
like several sorts of Trades hold up each other; some as Magistrates, and
rulers; others as Train-bands, as soldiers; some make forts, and dig trenches;
some as Merchants that traffic; some as Sea-men, and Shipmasters; some that
labour and and work, as some cut and carve; Others paint, and engrave; some
mix, and temper, join, and inlay, and glue together; some form, and build; some
cast in moulds, and some makes moulds to cast; some work rough-casts; some
polish and refine; some bear burdens, some take off burdens, some dig, some
sow, some plough, some set, some graft, some plant, some gather, some reap,
some sift, some thrash, some grind, some knead, some bake, some beat, some
spin, some weave, some sew together, some wind and twist, some create, and
others dissolve, and millions of millions of motions, but as we see external,
so we may imagine are internal motions.
Chap. 65. Many motions go to the producing of one thing, or to one end.
FOr there are millions of several motions go to the making of one figure, or
in mixing, as I may say, of several degrees of the dull part of matter, as I
will give one for example in gross external motions, where I will describe it
by digestive motions, which is to fit parts, and to distribute parts to several
places proper to the work. For digestive motions, there are many several sorts,
or kinds of motions mixed together, as for example, a piece of meat is to be
boiled, or the like, some motions cut fuel, and others take it up, others
carry, other lay down in a Chimney, or the like place, others put fire, others
kindle it, and make it burn, others take mettle and melt it, others cast such a
figure as a pot, others bring the pot, others set it over the fire, others take
up water, others carry that water to the pot, others put that water into the
pot, others kill a sheep, others divide it into parts, others put it a part
into the pot. Thus a piece of meat cannot be boiled without all these motions,
and many more, which would be too tedious to relate, for I could have enlarged
in three times as many more, only to boil a piece of meat, and if there be so
many several motions in our gross sense in such things as these, then what is
there in infinite Nature, yet for all these infinite varieties of motions, as I
said before, I cannot perceive but six ground-motions, or fundamental motions,
from whence all changes come, which are these attractive motions, contracting
motions, retentive motions, dilative motions digestive motions, and expulsive
motions; likewise, although there be infinite kinds, and different figures,
yet the ground-work, from whence arises all the veriety, is but from four
figures; as Circular, Triangular, Cup, and Paralels. And as there are infinite
changes of motions, amongst the sensitive innated matter, working on the dull
parts of matter, so there are infinite changes of motions in the rational
innated matter, making infinite kinds of knowledge, and degrees of knowledge,
and understanding, and as there are infinite changes of motion, so there are
infinite effects, and every produced effect, is a producing effect, and effects
which effect produce effects, and the only matter is the cause of all effects,
for the several degrees of only matter, is the effect of only matter, and
motion is the effect of some sorts of the degrees of only matter, and
varieties are the the effects of matter and motion, and life is the effect of
innate matter; and knowledge the effect of life.
Chap. 66. Of the six principal motions.
AS I have said, there are infinite Contractions, Atractions, Retentions,
Dilations, digestions, and expulsions, and to explain my self to my readers as
well as I can, unless they should mistake me, I will here describe, although
after a gross way; yet according to my capacity. A few of the infinite variety
of motions, first there are five, or six principal motions, from whence
infinite changes are made, or produced, as from Contractions, Attractions,
Retentions; these three principal motions do in some kind simpathize to each
other; and dilations, and expulsions do also sympathize to each other, but
digestions is a mixed motion taking part of all, but I divide them into six
parts, for distinction; Now to treat of them severally, we must make an
imaginary Circumference, and Center.
Then first for Attracting motions, which is to draw towards the Center, that
is, to draw to a less compass, as to draw towards a point, yet Atractions
draw not always after one and the same manner, for some motions draw after
them, as horses do Coaches, Carts, sleds and the like, but after several This
for example.
fashions, forms, and biases and several motions, in those motions some slow,
some quick, some cross, some even. Again, some times Attractive motions draw,
as if one should pull in a line, or draw in a net, some slope-wayes, some
straight ways; some square ways, some round ways; and millions of the like
varieties, in this sort of motion, yet all Attracting motion.
Secondly, Contracting motions which move after another manner; for though both
these sorts of motions, are to bring towards a point, yet Contraction me
thinks, strives more against Vacuum, then Attraction, gathering all into a firm
body, stopping up all porous passages, shutting out space, and gathering in
matter, as close as it can; indeed Attractions are but in the way to
Contractions, as Dilations to expulsions; but this sort of motions is,
surfling, pleating, folding, binding, knitting, twisting, griping, pressing,
tying, and many the like, and after several manners, or fashions.
Thirdly, Retention is to hold, or to stay from wandering, to fix, as I may
(...), the matter to one place, as if one should stick, or glue parts together.
Fourthly, Dilations are to enlarge, as to spend, or extend, striving for
space, or compass; it is an encroaching motion, which will extend its bounds
as far as it can, this sort of motion is melting, flowing, streaming,
spreading, smoothing, stretching, and millions of the like.
Fiftly, Expulsive, is a motion that shuns all unity, it strives against
solidity, and uniformity, it disperses every thing it hath power on; this sort
of motion, is, breaking, dissolving, throwing about.
Sixthly, Digestive motions, are the creating motions, carrying about parts to
parts, and fitting, and matching, and joining parts together, mixing and
tempering the matter for proper uses.
Chap. 67. Of Exterior Motions produced from the six principle Motions.
I Will here repeat some of the varieties of gross exterior Drawing motions.
motions, such as are visible to our grosser senses, to clear my readers
imaginary motion; Some motions draw, as horses draw Coaches, Carts, Sleds,
Harrows, or the like; others, as horses, and dogs, are led in a bridle, or
Some, as beasts draw their prey to the Den moving backwards.
Some draw up lines shorter, and thicker, and some draw in circular lines,
sloping lines, and square lines.
Other sorts of drawing, some straight lines; some square lines, round lines,
slope lines, some motions draw up; some draw down, some draw side-wayes; some
cross, some regular; Other motions do, as if one should drive, or shove a
solid Driving m tions.
substance before them, the varieties of these motions.
Some are, as if a man should drive a wheel-barrow, or rolling of barrels, or
driving a plough, or a rowler, and millions the like.
Others are, as if beasts and men were to carry burdens, Bearing motions.
some bearing burdens on their back; some on their head; some in in their
mouth; some in their arms; some in their hands; some under their arms; some on
their thighs; some on their stings, as Bees do, and millions the like, and
every one of those burdens, have several motions thereto, and yet all but
bearing motions.
Other sorts of motions, as throwing the bar, pitching the Throwing, striking,
darting motions.
bar, throwing a ball, striking a ball, throwing a bowl, flinging a dart,
darting a dart, throwing upward, downward, straight-out, side-wayes, and all
these several manners, is but a throwing motion.
Leaping, running, hopping, trotting, galloping, climbing, clamering, Lofty
flying, and infinite others, yet all is but a lofty motion.
Diving, dipping, mowing, reaping, or shearing, rolling, creeping, Low (...)
crawling, tumbling, travelling, running, and infinite the like examples may be
given of the varieties of one and the same kind of motion.
Chap. 68. Of double motions at one and the same time, on the same matter.
AS for example; spinning flax, or the like is drawn long, and small, twisted
hard, and round, and at one time.
Again, a bowl runs round-way, and yet straight-out at one time.
A shuttle-cock spins about in a straight line.
The wind spreads, and yet blows straight-out at one and the same time.
Flame ascends Circular, and many the like examples may be given.
Chap. 69. Of the several strengths.
ALthough there be infinite strengths of Motion, yet not to all sorts of
figures, nor to all degrees of matter; for some figures move slow, others move
swift, according to the Nature of the shape, or the interior strengths, or the
degree, or quantity of innated matter, that created them; for though every
degree of innated matter, is of one and the same strength, yet there are
different degrees; but only two degrees are subject to our weak sense, as the
innate mind, and the innated body, which we call sense and reason, which sense
and reason, may be in every thing, though after different manners, but we have
confined sense, only to animal kind, and reason only to mankind; but if the
innated matter is in the dull parts of matter, as the life of the body, then
there is no part that hath not sense and reason whether creating or created,
dissolving, or dissolved, though I will not say that every creature enjoys life
alike, so every figure is not innated alike, for some is weaker innated, and
some stronger, either by quantity or degree, yet every figure is innated; for
it is innated matter that creates, and dissolves figures, yet the innated
matter works according to the several degrees, and tempers, of the dull part of
matter, and to such properties, and figures, and figures properties, and proper
figures, that is, motion doth form the only matter, into figures, yet motion
cannot alter the Entity of only matter, but motion can, and doth alter the
interior, and exterior figures, and though the several degrees of matter may be
placed, and replaced in figures, yet the nature of the matter cannot be
Chap. 70. The creations of Figures, and difference of Motions.
THose motions that are proper to create figures, are different from those
motions that dissolve them, so that sympathetical internal motions, do not
only assist one another, but Sympathetical external Motions, and Sympathetical
figures; this is the reason that from two figures, a third, or more is created,
by the way of procreation; yet all figures are created, after one and the same
kind of way; yet not after one and the same manner of way, as Vegetables,
Minerals, and some sorts of Animals, as such as are bred from that we call
corruption, as some sorts of worms, and some sorts of flies, and the like;
Conjunction of those different motions.
Yet are they created by the procreation of the heat, and moisture, the same
way are plants that grow wild produced, but those that are sown or set,
although they are after one and the same kind of way, yet not after the same
First the earth bears Vegetables, and the plants bear seed, and the seed, and
earth bear Vegetables again.
manner; for the young vegetables, were produced from the seeds, and the earth,
which were sowed, or set together, and in grafts is when two different plants
produce seed of mixed nature, as a Mule is produced, or the like creature, from
two different Animals, which make them of mixed nature; for As there is a
Sympathetical conjunction in one, and the same kind of figure, so there is a
Sympathetical conjunction in some sorts of figures; but not in all, nor to all,
for that would make such a confusion in nature, as there would be no
distinction, of kinds; besides, it were impossible for some kind of figures,
to make a conjunction with other kinds, being such a difference betwixt them,
some from the nature of the figures, others from the shape of the figures.
And Minerals are produced by the Conjunction of such Elements, which were
begot by such motions, as make heat, and drought, and cold and dry. Thus all
figures are created from different motions, and different degrees, of infinite
only matter; for only matter joins, and divides it self by self motions, and
hath done so, and will do so, or must do so eternally, being its nature, yet
the divisions, and substractions, joynings, and creations, are not alike, nor
do they continue, or dissolve, with the like measure of time, which time is
only as in a reference to several motions.
But as I have said, there can be nothing lost in nature, Although there be
infinite changes, and their changes never repeated. For say a man dies, and his
figure dissolves into dust, as small as Atoms, and is dispersed so, as never to
meet, and every Atom goes to the making of several figures, and so changes
infinitely, from figure, to figure, yet the figures of all these changes lie in
those parts, and those parts in only matter; so likewise several motions may
cease as figures dissolve, but still those motions lies in innated matter, and
each particular figure, in the generality of matter and motion, which is on the
dull part, and innated part of only matter.
Chap. 71. The Agilenesse of innated Matter:
INnated matter seems much nimbler in some works, then in other, as making
Elements, and their several changes, being more porous then Animals,
Vegetables, and Minerals, which are more contracted, and not so easily
metamorphosed, and on the thin part of dull matter, they seem much nimbler, and
agil, then when they work on the gross part of dull matter; for though the
innated matter can work, but according to the strength, yet not always
according to that strength; for their burdens are not always equal to their
strength; for we see in light thin dull matter, their motions to be more swift,
having less encumbrances, and lighter burdens, unless it be oposed, and
stopped by the innated matter, that works in the more solid, or thicker part of
dull matter, or move solid and united figures, yet many times the innated
matter, that works on the thin part of dull matter, or in more porous figures,
will make way through solid and thick bodies, and have the power on those that
work on more gross matter, for the innate matter that works on gross matter,
cannot resist so well, having greater burdens, nor act with that facility as
the others can, whose matter is lighter, or figures more pourous; for we see
many times water to pass through great rocks, and mountains, piercing and
dividing their strengths, by the frequent assaults thereon, or to; yet many
times the pass is kept or lost, according to the quantity of the innated (...)
of either side.
Chap. 72. Of external, and internal figures and Motions.
FOr the motions of heat and drought begets the Sun the motions of heat and
moisture begets the Air.
The motions of cold and dry, begets the earth, and the rest of the Planets,
and as other motions begot them, so they begot others, and as these Elemental
Planets beget in gener all figures, which we call creatures in the world; so
these figures, as they are matched, beget each particular figures of several
sorts; For external figures, are made by internal motions; for though
Vegetables, Minerals, and Animals be internal figures, as to the globe of the
World, which is the external figures to them, yet they are external figures to
those which are created in them, until such time as they are cast forth of
that mould, as I may say, which they were made in, which is the womb, and the
several wombs of several kinds, are several moulds, but indeed all moulds
differ in their points.
Perchance this subject might be better explained, but my modest thoughts will
not give my inquisitive thoughts leave to trace Natures Creations by
procreation; Although I believe nature, and her works are pure of themselves,
but 'tis the Abuse of her works, and not the knowledge that corrupts man-kinde.
Chap. 73. Of repeating one and the same work, and of varieties.
NAture may repeat one and the same creature if she pleases, that is, the same
motions, on the same matter, may create the same creature, by reason the same
motions, and the same matter, is eternally in the body infinite: thus the
Original cause of producing one and the same is eternal, by reason nothing in
nature can be annihilated, and though the infinite matter is but one and the
same, yet the infinite part of innated matter, moves infinite several ways,
and by reason of the diversity of motion, there is such variety, as seldom any
two creatures are alike, for motion delights in variety, not so much in the
different kinds, as in the particular creatures, which makes me think that
motion is bound by the nature of the matter, to make such kinds; Although it
be at liberty for particulars, and yet the several kinds may be as infinite as
the particulars; as for example, although motion is bound to Animal kind,
Vegetable kind, Mineral kind, and also to make such kind of worlds as this
is; yet motion may make infinite particular worlds, as infinite particular
Animals, Vegetables, Minerals, and those infinite worlds may differ, as those
kinds of Creaturs; for worlds may differ from other worlds, not only as man
from man, but as man from beast, beasts from birds, birds from fish, and so as
Vegetables do; for an oak is not like a tulip, or roses; for trees are not like
flowers, nor flowers like roots, nor roots like fruit, nor all flowers alike,
nor all roots alike, nor all fruits alike, nor all trees, and the rest, and so
for Minerals; gold is not like lead, nor a diamond like a pibble stone; so
there may be infinite worlds, and infinite variety of worlds, and be all of
that kind we call worlds, yet be nothing alike, but as different, as if it
were of another kind, and may be infinite several kinds of creatures, as
several sorts, that we can never imagine, nor guess at; for we can guess, nor
imagine at no other ways, but what our senses brought in, or our imaginations
raised up, and though imaginations in nature may be infinite, and move in every
particular brain after an infinite manner; yet it is but finite in every
particular figure, because every particular figuse is finite, that is every
particular figure comes by degrees from creation to a full growth, from a full
growth to a decay, from a decay to a dissolution; but not a Annihilation, for
every particular figure lies in the body infinite, as well as every particular
kind; for unless eternalmatter, and infinite matter, and eternal and infinite
motions could be Annihilated, infinite figures will eternally remain, although
not in their whole bulk, yet in their parted pieces; for though one and the
same matter may be made into other figures: yet the former figures have as much
a being as the present figures, by reason the matter that was the cause of
those figures hath an eternal being, and as long as the cause lasts, the
effects cannot be Annihilated.
Chap. 74. Of creation, and dissolving of Nature.
THe divisions, and substractions, joynings, and creations, are not alike, nor
do they continue, and dissolve with the like measures of time; for some
Vegetables are old, and decrepit at a day old, others are but in their prime
after a hundred years, and so some Animals, as flies and the like, are old and
decrepit at a year old; others, as man is but at his prime at twenty years, and
will live a hundred years, if he be healthy and sound; so in the Minerals,
perchance lead, or tin, or the like, is but a fly, for continuance to gold, or
like a flower to an oak, then it is probable, that the Sun and the rest of the
Planets, Stars, and Millions more that we know not, may be at their full
strength at ten hundred thousand years, nay million of millions of years, which
is nothing to eternity, or perchance, as it is likely, other figures were at
full strength when matter and motion created them, and shall last until matter
dissolves them. Again, it is to be observed that all Spherical figures last
longest, I think it is because that figure hath no ends to ravel out at.
Chap. 75. Of Gold.
SOme say that Gold is not to be altered from the figure that makes it gold,
because Chemists have tried and cannot do it, but certainly that innated motion
that joins those parts, and so made it in the figure of Minerals can dissolve
those parts, and make it into some figure else, to express an other thing; but
being a (...) solid part of dull matter then that which makes other minerals,
it is longer a creating, and dissolving, then the other figures are, that are
of a light or softer substance, and may be the motions that make gold, are of
slower nature, so as it is caused from the hardness of the matter, or the
slowness of the spirit, caused by the curiosity of the work, wherein they must
use more different motions then in other figures; so as it may be a thousand
years uniting, or a thousand years a dispersing, a thousand, nay ten thousand;
for there is no account, nor time in nature infinite, and because we last not
so song as to perceive it, shall we say that Gold was eternal, and shall last
eternally; so we may as well Unless a greater power destroy it before the
natural time.
say an Oak, that is a hundred years, ere it comes to full maturity, and a
hundred years, ere it comes to be dissoved, that it was an Oak eternally, and
shall be so eternally, because a flower, is created, and dissolved in two or
three days, but the solidity of the matter, and the curiosity in the several
changes, and enterchanges of motions prolong the work, yet it is hastened, or
retarded by the quantity of spirits that work therein; for when there is more,
it is sooner formed, when less, longer ere it come to its figurative
Chap. 76. Of Sympathies, and Antipathies, which is to agree, or disagree, to
join, or to cross.
THere are infinite sorts of figures, or Creatures, that have Sympathy, and
infinite sorts of figures, that have Antipathies, both by their exterior, and
interior motions, and some exterior Sympathy with some interior, and some
interior with some exteriors, and some exterior with exteriors, and interiors
with interiors, both in one and the same figure, and with one and the same
kind, and with different kinds, and with several sorts, which works various
effects: and here I will treat a little of Vegetables, and Minerals with
Antipathy, or Sympathies, with Animals of all Animals. First, man thinks
himself to have the Supreme knowledge, but he can but think so, for he doth not
absolutely know it, for thought is not an absolute knowledge but a suppositive
knowledge, for there are as many several degrees of knowledge, as of innate
matter which is infinite, and therefore not absolute, and as much variety of
knowledge, as there is of motions, and though all innated matter is knowing,
yet all innated matter is not known; this makes figures to have of each others
a suppositive, but not an absolute knowledge; thus infinite makes innated
matter in some kind, a stranger to it self, yet being knowing, although not
known, it makes an acquaintance with parts of it self, and being various by
interchanging motions, it also loses acquaintance; the acquaintance we call
learning, invention, experience, or memory, the unknown, or not acquainted we
call stupidity, ignorance, forgetfulness, illiterate, but by the acquaintance
of experience, we come to find the use of many things, and by the use we come
to learn, and from our learning we come to practise, and by our practise we
come to produce many effects, from the hidden and mystical causes, which are
the effects, from the only cause which is the only matter, thus we come to
find the use of Earth, Water, Air, and Fire, Vegetables, Minerals, and so
Animal with Animal, and we do not only get new acquaintance; which is new
experience, but we make use of our acquaintance to our own benefit, or at least
we strive to do so; for it is the nature of life, which life is innated matter,
to strive for preheminency, Life is in every thing.
and absolute power, that is, only matter would rule it self, but being
infinite it neither absolutely knows it self, nor can absolutely rule or govern
it self, and though it be an endless work, yet motion which is the moving part
of nature, cannot desist, because it is infinite, and eternal, thus moving
matter running perpetually towards absolute power, makes a perpetual war; for
infinite, and only matter is always It is but one thing, but three words.
at strife for absolute power, for matter would have power over infinite, and
infinite would have over matter, and eternity would have power over both.
Thus infinite and eternal matter joined all, as to one is always at strife in
it self, yet the war is regular, not confused; For there this is a natural
order, and discipline is in nature as much as cruel Tyranny; for there is a
natural order, and discipline often-times in cruel Tyranny.
Chap. 77. Of different knowledge in different figures.
CErtainly there are infinite several kinds, as well as infinite several
sorts, and particular creatures in nature, and certainly every several kind,
nay, every several sort in every kind. Knowledge works after a different
manner; in every different figure, which different manners we call particular
knowledges which works according to the figure, so infinite knowledge lies in
infinite figure, and infinite figure in infinite matter, and as there are
infinite degrees of matter, so there are infinite degrees of knowledge, and as
there are infinite degrees of knowledge, so there are infinite degrees of
motions, so there are infinite degrees of figures, and as there are infinite
degrees, so there are infinite kinds, and as there are infinite kinds, so
there are infinite sorts, and so infinite particulars in every sort, yet no
kind can be said to have most, or least, though less or more; for there is no
such thing, as most or least in nature. For as I said before, there is only
different knowledge belonging to every kind, as to Animal kind, Vegetable
kind, Mineral kind; and infinite more which we are not capable to know, but
two particular sorts in every kind; as for example, Man may have a different
knowledge from beasts, birds, fish, worms, and the like, and yet be no wiser,
or knowing then they; For different ways in knowledge makes not knowledge more
or less, no more then different paths enlarge one compass of ground; nor no
more then several words for one and the same thing, for the thing is the same,
only the words differ; so if a man hath different knowledge from a fish, yet
the fish may be as knowing as man, but man hath not a fishes knowledge, nor a
fish a mans knowledge.
Likewise some creatures may have more, and some less knowledge then others;
yet none can be said to have most, or least; for there is no such thing as most
or least in nature, nor doth the weakness, or imperfection in particular
creatures impair the knowledge of the kind, or impair the That is to weaken
the degree.
knowledge as I may say, belonging to any particular sort, nor can any one have
such a supremacy of knowledge as to add to the knowledge of the kind, or sort
of kind, as to have such a knowledge as is above the capacity of that kind,
or sort to understand. As for example, a man to know more then the nature of
man is to know; for what knowledge man hath had, or can have, is in the
capacity of the kind, though not to every particular man, for though nature
may work within her self; yet she cannot work beyond her self, and if there be
mix sorts of creatures, as partly man, and partly beast, partly man, and
partly fish, or partly beast, and partly fish, and partly fish, and partly
foul; yet although they are mixed creatures, and may have mixed knowledges, yet
they are particular sorts, and different knowledges, belonging to those sorts,
and though different sorts have different knowledges, yet the kind may be of
one and the same degree; that is, every several sort of creatures, in one and
the same kind, is as knowing and as wise, as another, and that which makes
some creatures seem less perfect then others, or more knowing then others, is
the advantage, or disadvantage of their (...), which gives one creature power
over another; but different Knowledge in different creatures takes advantages by
turns according as it turns to it. And as there is different Knowledge, and
different Kinds, and several sorts, so there is different Knowledge in
different senses, in one and the same creature; for what man hath seen the
interior biting motion of Gold, and burning motions of heat? yet feels them we
may imagine by the touch, the interior nature of fire to be composed of sharp
points, yet our sight hath no Knowledge thereof, so our sight hath the
Knowledge of light; but the rest of our senses are utterly ignorant thereof;
our ears have the Knowledge of sound, but our eyes are ignorant of the
Knowledge thereof; thus, though our ears may be as Knowing as our eyes, and our
eyes as Knowing as our ears, yet they may be ignorant of each other, I say
Knowledge, for sense is Knowledge, as well as reason, only reason is a degree
above sense, or sense, a degree beneath reason.
Chap. 78. The advantages of some figures, some degrees of matter, and motions,
over others.
IF we do but strictly pry into the works of nature, we shall observe, that
all internal motions, are much after the manner of external motions, I mean
those motions that we can perceive, by those effects, as are subject to our
senses, and although for the most part the strongest motions govern the
weakest, yet it is not always found that they conquer the weaker; for there
are infinite slights, or infinite advantages to be taken, or mist in infinite
nature, some by the (...) of their figures, and some in the degrees of matter,
and some in the manner of moving; for slights are just like the actions of
Jugglers, Vauters, or Tumblers, Wrestlers, or the like; for shapes I will give
one or two for example, as a little Mouse which is but a weak creature, in
comparison to an Elephant, yet the small Mouse shall overcome an Elephant, by
running up through the snout, and so get into the head, and so gnaw on his
brain; And a Worm is a weak creature in comparison of a man, yet if he get into
the guts, it will gnaw out his bowels, and destroy that figure. So for degrees
of matter, what advantage hath the innated matter, or the dull part of matter,
and for motions, most often the nimbler, and agile motions, get an advantage on
the stronger, if more slower, and oftener by the manner of motions; for many
times a diving motion will have the better of a swimming motion, a jumping
motion of a running motion, a creeping or crawling motion, of either, a darting
motion of a flying motion, a cross motion of a straight motion, a turning
motion of a lifting motion, so an Attractive motion of an expulsive motion, and
infinite the like, and every motion may have their advantages by turns, and
then the advantages of place, and of times, as I may call it, for distinction
sake, some Creatures will suppress other creatures in the night, when the
suppressers dare not appear to the supprssed in the light, a great Army shall
be destroyed by a little Army, by standing in a lower patch of ground, oft by
fighting at such a time of the day, when the sun shines on their faces, but it
would be too long for Methusalems life, to set down examples, being infinite,
but this shall serve to express my opinions.
Chap. 79. Of the figurative figures.
MOst figures are lined, and enterlined, as I may say, for expression sake,
some figures are like a set, or nest of boxes, as for example, half a dozen
boxes one within another, so every of those figures hath the same figure,
within one another, the outermost figure being the largest, the inmost figure
the least; as for example, a man builds a house, first he builds the figure of
that house with wood, as beams, and rafters and lathes; next he lays mortar,
then is the figure of that house in mortar, then he lays bricks or stones,
then there is the figure of the house in stone, and brick, then it is
plastered within the inside, then there is the figure of the house in
plaster, if it be painted, then there is figure of the house in painting; so
likewise an Animal, as a man, first there is the figure of a man in bones, as
we may see in a Anatomy, then there is the figure of a man in flesh; thirdly
there is the figure of a man in the skin, then there are many, different
figures, belonging to one and the same figure, as every several part of an
Animal is of a different figure, and every part hath different figures
belonging thereunto; as man for example, to the hand there is the palm, the
back, the fingers, the nailes, yet all makes but one hand.
So the head, there is the brain, the pia matter, the dura matter, the skull, the
nose, the eyes, the fore-head, the ears, the mouth, the lips, the tongue, the
chin, yet all this is but a head; likewise the head, the neck, the breast, the
arms, the hands, the back, the hips, the bowels, the thighs, the legs, the
feet; besides, the bones, the nerves, the muscles, the veins, the arteries, the
heart, the liver, the lights, the midriff, the bladder, the kidneys, the guts,
the stomach, the brain, the marrow, the blood, the flesh, the skin, yet all
these different figurative parts make but the figure of one man. So for
Vegetables, the root, the sap, the peath, the bole, the bark, the branches,
make but the figure of one tree; likewise every figure is different, this man
is not like that man, this tree is not like that tree, for some trees are
larger, or lesser, higher, or lower, more or less branched, crooked, or
straghter, so in Animals, some are of one shape, some of another, as men, some
are slender and tall; some little and low; some big and tall, others thick and
low; some high-nos'd; some flat-nos'd; some thick, some thin lipped; some high
fore-heads, some low, some broad, some narrow, and numbers of like examples may
be given, not only to man, but all other Animal creatures according to their
shapes, that every particular in one and the same kind, hath different
figures, yet every particular kind hath but one and the same motion, which
properly and naturally belong to that Kind of figure, as a horse to gallop, to
amble, to trot, to run, to leap, to kick, and the like; and man to lift, to
carry to walk, to run, to pitch, to dig, to shut, to chop, to pull back, to
thrust forward; likewise every particular part in one and the same Kind, hath
but one and the same kind of motions, local or otherwise, and ever particular
bird, hath but one, and the same kind of motion in their flights, and in their
So beasts, every particular kind hath but one and the same manner of motion,
and feeding; so likewise all mankind hath after one and the same Kind of
motions belonging naturally to every particular part of his body, the only
difference is in the strength, or weakness, their restraints or facilities but
not different in manner of the movings. But to return, to the figures, I say
there are different figures belonging to one and the same kind of figure, but
the ground or fundamental figures in every particular figure, are there. (As
for example) a tree at first is the figure of wood, the second is such a sort
of wood, as a Cedar, an Oak, an Elm, an Ash, and the like; also of such a
nature of wood, some fitter to burn then to build, others that will grow but on
such, or such soils, others to last longer, or die sooner, or bud and bear in
such, and such seasons, some to bear fruit, others to bear none.
Likewise for Animals, the first figure is to be an Animal, that is, to have a
local figure, the second figure is to be flesh, Fish is a kind of flesh.
not wood. The third is to be such a kind of flesh as mans flesh, not bears
flesh, or dogs flesh, or horse flesh, or cows flesh, and more examples may be
given, then I am able to repeat, or my book to enfold, but Animals and
Vegetables have more different figures, belonging to every particular, figure
or Kind then Minerals, especially metals, which are as it were composed of one
Chap. 80. Of the gloomy figures, and figures of parts, and of one piece.
Air is not a shining body of it self, but as the lines of light shine upon
it, it is smooth, and may be aglossie body, but not a shining; for though there
are infinite several sorts of brightness and shining, yet two I will describe.
As there are two sorts of shining figures; some that cast forth beams of
light, as bright shining fire, and likewise from some sorts of stones, bones,
and wood, so there are some sorts of figures that only retain a bright shining
quality in themselves, but cast forth no beams there-from; or else so weak and
small, as not useful to our sight, but what is represented to us thereon, by
other lights; this sort is water, metal, and vulgar stones, which perchance
air may have such a shining body.
These shining bodies, as water, or metal, or the like, are not perceived in
the dark, but when light is cast thereon, we do not only perceive the light,
but their own natural shining quality by that light.
Again, some figures have only a gloss, which is a faint shining, like as a
fained light, or an eclipsed shadow, as all the pores Vegetables, and Animals
skins have; and some figures are glossy through the thinness, or
transparentnesse, not in the nature, for by reason the figure is thin, and
transparent, the light shining, though transparent doth not only show the
light, but the light gives those figures a gloss.
Some figures, as I have said, are as it were all of one piece, as some sorts
of earth, water, vapor, and air, which may be metamorphosed, by contracting and
Others of divers pieces, and several works, as Vegetables, and Animals,
wherein are joints and knots, some parts soft, and some liquid, some firm,
some hard, every part having a several figure, which varieties and
contrarieties serve to the consistence, and preservation, but of one perfect
figure; but Animals of all other figures have the most variety of works, and
several motions.
Chap. 81. Of the dull and innated matter.
SOme may say, that if there were infinite dull and in-moving matter, some of
it may lie unmoved eternally. I answer, that cannot be, for as there is
infinite dullness and solidity; so there is infinite acutenes and facility, by
which I mean searching, and penetrating, which in some sense makes it equal, if
there be equality in infinite, but the innating matter works not upon the dull
matter, as upon a new material; for the innate matter is mixed with the dull
part of matter; For the innated matter moves in the dull part of matter, and on
the dull part of matter, as I have described in my first part, for the innated
matter takes not fresh and new (as I may say) for distinction sake, to make a
figure with; but turns the dull matter into several figures, joining each
degree as the innate matter will, or as it is proper for such a kind of
figure, for some degrees of matter will not make, I do believe some kind of
figures, but the dull part of matter, is not mixed in the innate matter,
although the innate matter is mixed in that, for the innate matter is pure in
it self, without any gross mixture, for it is the infinite pure part of matter
infinite, it is the spirits, or essence of nature.
Chap. 82. An answer to an old question, what becomes of the shape, or figure,
or outward forms of the old figure, when the nature takes a new form.
ALL Created, or not created, or created, and dissolved again, figures or
forms, lie in only matter, either in by parts, or in the whole, for the
materials of every figure is but of one matter, and the lump of all figures is
the figure of eternal matter, for the infinite particular of figures, is the
infinite form, shape, or figure of infinite and eternal matter, and the
creation, disposals, and dissolvings of figures, are the several actions of
that only matter; for infinite motions are the infinite life, of the infinite
and eternal life, which life, is as eternal matter, being part of the matter it
self, and the manner of moving is but the several actions of life; for it is
not an absence of life when the figure dissolves, but an alteration of life,
that is, the matter cease not from moving, for every part hath life in it, be
the parts never so small, or dispersed amongst other parts, and if life, there
must be consequently sense, if sense, knowledge, then there can be no death, if
every part hath life in it, so that which we call death, is only an alteration
of such motions, in such a figure, in only matter.
Chap. 83. Of Transmigrations.
TRansmigrations are not metamorphosed, for to metamorphose is to change the
shape and interior form, but not the intellect, which cannot be without a new
creation, nor then, but so as partly the intellect changes, with the shape and
interior form, but all bodies are in the way of transmigrations perpetually.
As for example, the nourishing food that is received into the stomach
transmigrated into Chylus, Chylus into blood, blood into flesh, flesh into fat,
and some of the chylus migrated into humours, as Choler, Phlegm, and melancholy;
some into excrement, which transmigrats through the body, into dung, dung into
earth, earth into Vegetables, Vegetables into Animals; again by the way of
food, and likewise Animals into Animals, and Vegetables into Vegetables, and so
likewise the elements.
But indeed all creatures are created by the way of transmigration.
As for example, hens, or other fouls lay eggs, and then The yolk and white is
mixed into one substance which we call an adle egg; before it be a (...) it is
sit on them, from whence a nourishing heat is transmigrated from the hen into
the eggs, which transmigrates into a kind of a Chylus, then into blood, blood
into flesh, flesh into sinews, sinews into bones, and some into veins,
arteries, brains, and the like.
For transmigration is only the mixing sifting, searching, tempering faculty,
of innated matter, which is self-motion, Tis a lump of flesh before it be bone,
or sinew.
and motion is the only transmigrater, otherwise infinite matter would lie
idle eternally, though I cannot well conceive how infinite can be without
motion; but howsoever we perceive so much as there are proper motions, and
mixtures of matter belonging to every particular figure; and though figures
doth produce figures; yet figures do not order the creation, for it is not the
figures that create, but creation that produces by figures, which creation is
motion, which motion is innated matter, which matter creates and dissolves by
the way of transmigrations, all figures dissolving to create, and creates to
dissolve, but dissolving, and creation, which is that we call life and death,
hath only a reference to the figures, but not of the nature of the matter.
Chap. 84. Of metamorphosing of Animals and Vegetables.
IT is impossible for Animals and vegetables to be metamorphosed, And then it
is no metamorphosing I shall declare.
without a creation, as to transform a man into a tree, or a tree into a man,
nor a man into the form of a beast, as to turn mans-flesh into horse-flesh, or
horse-flesh into mans-flesh or one mans-flesh to turn into another mansflesh,
or an Oak, into a Cypres, or a Cypres into an Oak, and so the like in all
Vegetables, and Animals; thus Transforming the interior forms, or rather
changing the interior form, like garments, putting one, and another interior
form, upon one and the same intellect nature, which is impossible, by reason
the interior forms, and intellect natures, are inseparable, so that destroying
the one, destroys the other, and a change cannot be made of either, without
the dissolution of the whole, no more then a man can change the whole building,
without pulling down the house, for though they may make some alterations in
the outward shape as to add something more, or take away, and make all less,
or thicker, or thinner, or higher or lower; but cannot alter the interior form,
which is the foundations, but if they pull it down, the same materials may be
put into another form, or into the same form it was at first, but it must first
be new built again, before it can have those forms, and they must stay the time
of building; so for every Vegetable creature, and Animal creature, they cannot
be metamorphosed, by the reason metamorphosing is to change their forms without
a new creation, and they cannot change their forms without a dissolution, and
then created anew, by reason the intellect, and the interior form is as one
body, and not to be separated; for the interior forms of these creatures, and
the intellects depend upon one another, and without one the another cannot be.
The intellect, and the interior form may be divided together into parts; but
not separated apart, though the several sorts of one and the same kind, as
Animal kind may be mixed in their creations, as to be some part a beast, some
part a dog, or the like, and part a man, and some creature And then it is
called a new creature rather then a metamorphosed creature c.
partly a bird, and partly a beast, or partly a beast and partly a fish; yet
the intellect is mixed with the interior form, and the exterior shape with the
interior form.
The like in vegetables, and if the interior forms, and intellects of each
sort, nay of each creature, cannot be changed, much less of each kind, thus
the intellect natures, and interior forms of it, can never be without a new
creation, and as for the exterior shapes of Animals may be altered but not
changed; for Animals of all other creatures have their shapes most unite to the
interior form, and (...) intellect nature of any other creature in nature.
But I desire my readers not to mistake me, for want of terms, and words of
For the interior or intellect nature I mean is such properties, disposition,
constitution, Capacity, and the like; that makes it such a creature.
The interior form is such a substance, and such a sort as flesh, or fish, or
wood, or metal, and not only so, but such a sort of flesh, as mans-flesh,
horse-flesh, dogs-flesh, and the like.
So the wood of oak, the wood of maple, the wood of ash; And the like, so the
gold metal, the iron metal, and the like.
For horse-flesh is not mans-flesh, nor the wood of oak, the wood of ash, nor
the metal of gold, the metal of iron.
And as for the exterior form, I mean the outward shape.
Chap. 85. The Metamorphosing of the exterior forms, of some figures.
ALL figures that are of a united piece, as water and fire are, and not in
parts, as not having several parts of different natures, as Animals and
Vegetables have, may be Metamorphosed out of one form into another, and
rechange into the original form again, yet it is only their exterior form, not
their interior nature. As for example, water that is frozen, or turned to hail,
or snow, the exterior is only metamorphosed; Which circular lines I shall
express hereafter.
For the interior nature which is the circular line is unaltered, likewise when
the circular line is extenuated into air, the interior circle line is not
changed; but when the interior nature is dissolved, and the matter it was
composed of transmigrates into other figures.
Likewise metals when the interior nature is changed, it cannot be rechanged
again without a new creation; for if we can turn onemetal into another, yet it
is not as the way of metamorphosing, but transmigrating, otherwise we may say,
we can turn Animals and Vegetables into water, when we distil them, but the
magic of Chemistry shall nor return them to their interior nature, nor
exterior shape. Again, although their desires make them believe it possible to
be done, but substracting is not metamorphosing, but rather transmigrating, and
substracting is one of the chiefest faculties of transmigration.
And as for those creatures that are composed of parts of different natures (as
I have said) their exterior form cannot be metamorphosed, (...) those motions
that metamorphose one part, cannot metamorphose another.
And though every part is different, yet they generally unite to the
consistence of the whole figure, whereby the several transforming motions on
the several parts would make such a confusion, as upon necessity must dissolve
the intellect nature, and interior form of that (...) figure, thus striving to
alter would destroy.
MAny say that in natural Philosophy, nothing is to be known, not the cause of
any one thing, which I cannot persuade my selfis truth; for if we know effects,
we must needs know some causes, by reason that effects are the causes of
effects, and if we can knowbut one effect, it is an hundred to one, but we
shall know how to produce more effects thereby.
Secondly, the natural Philosophy is an endless study without any profitable
advantage; but I may answer, that there is no Art nor Science, but is produced
thereby, if they will without partiality consider from whence they are derived.
Thirdly, that it is impossible that any thing should be known in natural
Philosophy, by reason it is obscure and hid from the knowledge of man-kinde.
I answer, that it is impossible that nature should perfectly understand, and
absolutely know her self, because she is infinite, much less can any of her
works know her.
Yet it doth not follow, that nothing can be known, because all is not known.
As for example, there are several parts of the world discovered, yet it is
most likely not all, nor may be never shall be, yet most think that the whole
world is found, because Drake, and Cavendish went in a circular line until they
came to the place where they set out at first. And I am most confident that
most of all thought all the world was known unto them before the West-Indies
were discovered, and the man which discovered it in his brain before he had
travelled on the navigable sea, and offered it to King Henry the seventh, who
slighted him as a foolish fellow, not believing his intelligence, and no
question there were many that laughed at him, as a vain fool, others pitied
him, as thinking him mad, and others scorned him, as a cheating fellow, which
would have cozened the King of England of a sum of money; but the Queen of
Portugal being wiser then (...) rest employed him, and adventured a great sum
of money to set him forth on his way, which when the success was according to
the mans Genius brain, and had brought the Queen by the discovery, gold and
silver mines for her Coin, then all other nations envied the King of Spain who
was heir, and like a company of dogs which fight for a bone, went together by
the ears, to be sharers with him.
So the Bishop, who declared his opinion, of the Antipodes, was not only cried
down, and exclaimed against by the vulgar which hates all ingenuity, but
learned Scholars stood up against him, and the great and grave Magistrates
condemned him as an Atheist for that opinion, and for that reason put him from
his Bishopric, and though he had favour to spare his life, which opinion hath
since been found out by Navigators, but the ignorant unpractised brains, think
all impossible that is unknown unto them.
But put the case many went about to find that which can never be found (as
they said natural Philosophy is) yet they might find in the search that they
did not expect, which might prove very beneficial to them; or put the case ten
thousand should go ten thousand ways to seek for a cabinet of precious Jewels,
and all should miss of it but one, shall that one be scorned and laughed at
for his good fortune, or industry? this were a great injustice.
But ignorance and envy strives to take off the gloss of truth, if they cannot
wholly overthrow it; and those that write must arm themselves with negligence
against censure.
For my part I do, for I verily believe, that ignorance and present envy will
slight my book; yet I make no question, when envy is worn out by time, but
understanding will remember me in after ages, when I am changed from this life;
but I had rather live in a general remembrance, then in a particular life.
Earth Metamorphosed into water, water Metamorphosed to vapor, Air and fire,
at least into heat.
CHAP. 86.
MOtion forms a round lump of earth, or such like matter, by extenuating swells
it out, and as the swelling increases, the circumferent enlarges, and when its
extended further then this solid form, it becomes pores, and the parts looser.
This degree of extenuation, makes it mud, when it extends further then the
degree of mud, it turns to a softer form, as that of slime; the fourth
extenuating degree shapes it into a perfect ring drawing all the loose parts
into a compass line, this becomes water, and the difference of a lump, or ball
of earth to the watery circle, for a round lump is when there is no space, or
distinct lines, and a circular ring is a distinct line with a hollow center,
that is, an empty place, in the midst of a round line, so they may be a round
ball, but not a ring, or a round circle line, and a circle line and not a ball,
and as I said, when it comes to such a degree, of extenuating, it turns water,
that is, to be wet, liquid and fluid, and according as the circles are, is the
water more or less, and according as the lines are extenuated, or contracted,
is the water thicker or thinner, colder or hotter, heavier or lighter, and
according as the lines are round, or flat-edge, pointed, or smooth, is the
water fresh, sharp, salt, or bitter, but these circles may not only dilate,
and contract several ways, but after several fashions, as to make vapor, air,
fire, snow, hail, ice, and frost, as I shall declare in my following chapters.
Chap. 87. Of wetnesse.
WE may perceive that whatsoever is hot and dry, and cold and dry, shrinks
inward as towards the center, and whatsoever is hot and moist, and cold and
moist, dilates as towards the circumference, so that all moisture is wrought by
extenuating motions, and drought, by contracting motions, and not only
extenuating motions, but such sorts of extenuating motions, and drought by
contracting motions, and notonely extenuating motions, but such sorts of
extenuating motions as in circular figures, which circular figures make water,
so soft, smooth, and flowing, smooth, because circular; for Circles make it
smooth, the figures having no end extenuating makes it softby spreading and
loosing the parts, as flowing by reason dilations drive all outward as toward
the circumference yet the degree of extenuating may out-run the degree of wet;
for wet is in such a degree of extenuating circles as I may say, the middle
degree, yet there are many sorts of wet, as oily, wet, and watery; but I have
described that in my chapter of oil, but I take oil rather to be liquid and
moist, then wet; For there is difference betwixt moist, liquid, and wet, for
though moist and liquid is in a degree of wet, yet it is not an absolute wet,
for dissolved gums are liquid, not wet, melted Sugers are liquid, not wet, oil
is more liquid then wet, and smoke may be said to be liquid, as being of an
oily nature, and air rather to be moist then wet, and dust, Ashes, flame,
light, wind, may be said to be fluid, but not liquid nor wet.
Chap. 88. Of Circles.
A Circle is a round figure without ends, having a circumference, and a center,
and the figure of a circle, may be many ways contracted, but can be but in one
way extenuated, which is by enlarging the compass, of the line; and the reason
is, because it is a round piece, without ends; for a straight line may be drawn
out at either end; but if a circle be drawn out of the compass, it may stretch
out of the one side, but it will pull in the other side after it, unless the
line be broke, and then it is no longer a circle, thus we can extend no part
out, but another part must contract to give way to that part that goes out.
Chap. 89. Of Softness.
ALL that is wet is soft, I mean that which is naturally wet; but all that is
soft is not wet, as hair, wool, feathers, and the like.
Likewise all that is soft or wet is made by extenuating motions; now some may
ask me, why extenuating motions I mean natural extenuations.
should cause figures to be soft, more then any other? I answer, first, that
all extentions causes porousnesse, or spunginesse, by spreading or loosing
parts, and all that are porous tend to hollowness, and all that is hollow
tends to slackness, and all that are porous hollow, and slack tend to
softness; for we may perceive whatsoever figure is porous, is not so firm,
strong, nor hard, as those which are close compact; for that which hath no
Vacuum, or Convenient distance, hath not so much Liberty, as that which hath
Vacuum; As the pores of the skin.
for Vacuum is space and distance betwixt parts, which gives those parts
liberty to move, and remove, and that which hath most liberty is most loose,
and that which is most loose is least contracted, and that which is least
contracted, is most pliant, and that which is most pliant is soft. But I desire
my Readers would not mistake me, for as there is hard, soft, light, heavy,
thick, thin, quick, slow, belonging to the nature of the only infinite matter,
so there are belonging to such shapes, or figures made by the working of the
infinite motions making infinite figures out of infinite matter; but the
difference is, that what is in the nature cannot be altered, but what is done
by the working of motions may be undone again, for the effects may alter, but
not the cause; thus motion and figure, or figure by motion may alter, but not
the nature of the matter; For motion and figure are but the effects of the
only and infinite matter c.
Chap. 90. Of Liquors.
ALL liquors are wrought by extenuating motions, and all that is liquid and
wet, are circles extenuated to such a degree, and after such a manner, and all
that are liquid and wet, is either water or of the nature of water, as also of
oils, vitrals, strong-waters, all juices from fruits, herbs, or the like, or
any thing that is liquid and wet; but though all that is liquid and wet
naturally agree in extenuating circles, yet their Oil, hot-waters, wine,
vitrals, aquafortis.
circle lines are different, which causes the different effects, for some have
different effects interiorly, others exteriorly, and some both interiorly, and
exteriorly, for some have circular lines of points, others have circular lines
pointed, others have circular lines of points pointed, others have circular
lines of points edged, some have smooth circle lines only edged; as the sharp
edge of a knife, or the like, others have circle lines edged of one side of the
line, and pointed on the other side, some their circle lines are flat, others
their circle lines are round, some their circle lines are twisted, others
plain, some checkred, others smooth, some more sharpe-edged, or pointed then
other; some smoother, and some rougher then other; And infinite more that I
know not how to describe; But these lines, nor circle points, nor edges, are
not subject to our senses, although their effects may make them subject to our
reason, for nature works beyond our sense, but reason is part of the sense of
nature; but of all wet liquors oil is most different from the effects of water,
for all other wet liquors do strive to quench fire, but oil doth assist it, yet
all vitrals have an exterior burning faculty, which oil hath not, and although
all strong wet liquors will flame when it is set on fire, yet they will quench
out fire, if enough be cast thereon.
Chap. 91. The extention and contraction of circles.
THe nature of extention strives to get ground, that is, space, or compass,
and to disperse, or level parts as it were, and the nature of contraction
strives to thrust out space and compass, and to thrust up parts close
together, and this is the reason that a circle may contract so many several
ways, because contraction flings out the compass, and makes use of the line,
laying the line into millions of several works.
And yet the exterior form which is the circular line, be one and the same,
that is, the circular line is not divided, but when those works are undone, and
the line extended to the full compass, it receives the original form, which is
a round circle; for as they were contracted without breaking the circle, so
they may be extended into a circle again.
Likewise the circular forms may be wrought with mixed motions, as partly by
contraction, and partly by extenuation, as when a round circle is wound about a
staff, or pole, or the like; for though the winding about the staff be a
contracting motion, or at least one way, which is when it draws inward, as
towards the center, yet by winding it lengthwayes, or upward, is a kind of an
Likewise, a circle or smoke when it curls in rings, before the circle break,
as we shall oft times see it doth contract, as folding and half curling, so it
extenuates as it spreads and wears out. Likewise take a round string, that is,
join the two ends, and put this circular string double, and then wind it
serpentine ways, and the like, and though the winding, or twisting about is
contracting, yet winding or twisting one ring before another is extenuating.
Here have I set down after what manner of ways are contracted, or continuated
circles, and thus millions of several works may by circles be wrought, and
several figures made thereof; Likewise for circular lines, some may be broad,
some narrow, some round, some flat, some edged, some twisted, but those that
are flat are most apt to be edged.
Likewise there may be circle lines with smooth lines, some pointed, some
checkred, some twisted, some braided, and the like.
But although the circle compass is perfect, yet the line is not a perfect
Circular compass, because the roughness makes it uneven. Thus as I have said
before, millions of changes may be in circles, but perchance some will say, it
is no longer a circle, when it is turned square, or triangular-wayes, or the
I answer, it is a circle squared, but not a circle broke, for as long as the
circle is whole, the interior nature is not dissolved, let the exterior figure
be after what manner it will or can; for still it is a natural circle, although
it be put into a Mathematical square, or the like; so those exterior figures,
are but changed shapes, not the natural form, but a natural square is to have
four distinct lines, and a triangle three distinct lines, and a cup six, as I
take it, or sixteen; but it is to be observed, that all those figures that
naturally are made of one piece, without distinct parts, or several tempered
matter, may change, and rechange their shapes, and yet keep their own interior
nature entire, that is the nature proper to such a figure; but those figures
that are made of many distinct parts, or several tempered matter, would make
such a confusion in their transformations, as would ruin the entire
Chap. 92. Of congealed water.
WAter is not always exteriorly wet, or fluid, as we may see always when it
is congealed to snow, ice, and hail, yet still it is water, keeping the
interior nature of being wet and fluid, only the cold contractions have, as
may say, altered the face or countenance thereof; for it is to be observed, as
there are extenuating motions, thrusting and stretching, enlarging further and
wider out in compass, breadth, length, and depth, as from the center to the
circumference, so there are contracting motions together, draw wind, twist and
pull in, as from the circumference to the center, and not only by interior
motions, but exterior motions; as for example, cold contraction upon water
circles, or any thing that is porous and spungie, draws, and gathers them into
several works, or draws them into a less compass, as strings do a purse, or
like fishers or faulkners nets.
But snow, hail, and frost, and ice is made by a level contraction, as if a
Circular line should be laid upon a flat ground, and be drawn a particular
work, as for example, according to the number of watery circles, there is such a
quantity of water, and if the quantity of water be more then the strength of
the cold contraction, it is frozen more or less, now the several figures which
cold contraction draws to make snow, hail, ice, and frost, are after this
manner, as first the interior nature of the water is a round circle like a
When it contracts into hail, the exterior figure contracts into a ball, or
lump, as if one should wind up a double line, or thread into a bundle, or
Snow is made by contraction, as if one should draw a round line into a three
square figure, as triangular way.
Ice, as if we should draw a round line into a four square figure, as after a
cup way.
Frost is made by such contracting motions, as if a round line should be drawn
into a surfling, as a crackling figure.
When this congealed cold thaws, it is either by the interior strength of
dilating motions, or by an exterior heat that draws these contractions out into
smooth extenuating circles again.
Thus circular lines may be drawn from the round compass, to be four square,
three square, or length-wayes, as one would clap the brim of (...) hat
together; and millions of several works, and never divide the circular lines,
but I will not say by a Mathematical rule, though nature is beyond our
And that which makes ice and hail more shining then frost, and snow, is, that
the lines are evener; for all figures that are composed by the way of lines,
are apt to shine, and those figures that have fewest points, or ends are
Now some may say, or ask, why I should think snow is made triangular ways? My
reason is, because it seems rougher, and not so united as ice, or hail, which
shows the interior figure hath more points, or unevener numbers, or unequal
lines, and a triangular figure is not so smooth, or at least seems not so, as a
circular, a parallel, or cup; for in the angulars the points and lines are odd,
and the lines run slope-wayes, whereas the figure of a cup, although it hath
more points, yet the figure is more proportionable, by the even number of the
points and lines; for as there are four points, so there are four equal lines,
which make an equal number, when in the figure of a triangular the points and
lines are odd; for though there are a plural number, yet it is an uneven
number, as being odd. And as I have said, the lines are slope when the figure
of a cup is just square, besides triangular points being odd, multiply and
substract by reflections, as we shall see by triangular glasses, that from one
face millions are made by subdividings. Thus what is made uneven by odd
numbers, are made even by equal numbers, and the odd points, and slope lines,
make the figure of snow rough, and the equal points, and straight lines make
the figure of ice smooth, but I treat here of exterior figures, or rather
countenances, not of the interior form, for their contractions change the
exteriors, not the interiors.
But if (...) be out, and mistake, either in terms of art, or otherwise, I
must entreat my readers to pardon it, for I am no Mathematician, only I have
gathered here and there some little parcels or crumbs from the discourse of my
friends, for I have not much kept the company of strangers, nor conversed with
dead Authors by books, but these parcels I have got, I place according to my
own fancy, if they sound probably, I have my ends, and the lines of my desires
are pointed with a satisfaction.
Chap. 93. Motion changing the figure from water to fire.
when these watery circle lines begin to enlarge, they grow smaller, and
thereby become less wet, and more thin, as vapor which is less wet then
water, and not so gross; for as I said before, when the circle comes in such a
degree of extenuating, it becomes wet, and beyond such a degree, it becomes
less wet; and so less and less, as before it came to such a degree, it
became more and more wet, as from being pores to soft, from soft to liquid,
from liquid From earth to water.
to wet, likewise from wet to moist, from moist to thin, which thin is air.
But when the extenuating lines come to such a degree of smallness, as to cut,
as a very small line will do, which is to such a degree, as to be sharp as an
edge, it makes it in a degree towards burning fire, so far as to become
sulphury hot, as we know by the sense of feeling, we find the air to be hot.
This sort of air which is made of watery circles, is like seething hot water,
for it is a moist heat, and not like the natural air, for this is but a
Metamorphosed air; for the interior nature of water is undissolved, only the
exterior is altered, the lines being become small and edged, by the fair
extenuations, but when those circles extenuate smaller then the quantity of
matter will afford to give a compass, it breaks, and turns to hot burning
fire; for the extenuating motions therein ceasing not, do stretch those lines
so small, as they fall into pointed parts; this alters the interior nature from
being water, to burning fire, for the interior nature of water is the circle
line, but if those lines be drawn by contracting motions into bigger lines, and
less circles, it becomes from thin hot air to vapor, or mists, and from vapor
to water, and so from water to slime, from slime to mud, from mud to earth, as
it did extenuate, so it contracts, if nothing hinders the same; for contraction
draws in the lines to such a bigness, like as a smaller thread to a bigger
thread, so from the thinnest air to the thickest air, from gross air to the
thin vapor, from thin vapor to thick vapor, fromthick vapor to water to slime,
fromslime to mud, from mud to earth; but according as the contracting and
dilating motions are quick, or slow, it is sooner or longer turning out of one
shape into another, and if any of the circular lines break by other motions or
figures before it coms to the furthest extention, the quantity becomes less
wasting that matter into figures of other natures, being dissolved from that
natural figure; thus that ball, or lump may be dissolved, like as Animals, or
the like; For no question these balls are created and dissolved as Animal
kind, and are as numerous as other creatures, and some lasting longer then
others, and some dissolving sooner; though their creations are different, one
being produced by procreation, the other by extenuation: thus these elements
are increaseable, and decreaseable, and other creature are; and when the
interior nature is altered, it dissolves as other creatures do, only the
exterior with the interior dissolves, which most of other creatures do not, for
when the interior is altered in Animals, the exterior is perfect, and dissolves
more by degrees.
Chap. 94. Of Oil.
OIL is partly of the nature of fire, and partly of the nature of water; for as
it is soft, fluid, liquid, and moist, it is of the nature of water; as it is
hot burning and flamable, it is of the nature of fire, for that which makes it
fludi and liquid, is by extenuations, and that which makes it moist and liquid
is by extenuating circles, and that which makes it burning, is, that those
circular lines are composed of pointed parts, which when fire and oil meets,
the fire breaking those lines a sunder, sets those pointed parts at liberty,
which causes it to rise in a flame, and the reason why it flames, is, that it
doth not suddenly lose the circular extenuating nature; for flame is somewhat
of the nature of water, as being fluid, though not wet, and the reason why
flame is fluid, is, because it ascends in a circular motion, for though the
ascent be in a strict parrelled line, yet the matter is after a circular
figure, as a hollow spungy body, as after this manner or the like, which shuts
upward, like an arrow out of a bow, only imagining the arrow to be in
serpentine As thns
shape, and to turn and spin about as it ascends, likewise the body to extend,
or spread outward, according to the bulk or quantity, which several figures, or
several motions, may be all at one time, and in one and the same thing, and
work to one and the same effect, and to several effects at the same time, which
causes it to be fluid, liquid, and light, for light as well as oil, water, or
flame, is fluid, caused by extenuating motions, for as water will run forward
when it hath liberty, or run backward in a torrent when it is stopped, so light
will enter when it hath passage, or run back by reflection if it be stopped, but
all those fluidities are different by reason their extenuations are different;
For light is caused by swift extenuating parallel lines; water, oil, and the
like by extenuating circular lines, which make it moist, and liquid, as well as
fluid, but flame takes part from all, for it is light and fluid by the swift
extenuating parallel lines, it ascends in, and liquid, although not wet, by the
circular motions it ascends up in, and burning by the sharp parts it is
composed of; vitral is after the same nature of oil, only the lines are Or
rather like flame.
edged, as a knife, or the like, or sharp edged tools, which make it have an
exterior pressing quality, as burning fire hath; but the exterior of oily
lines are smooth, which makes it soft, and glib, and not so sharp and
penetrating as vitrals, or the like are.
Thus flame, light, oil, fire vitrals, waters, have mixed motions, to make one
figure, and many figures, to make those figures which make them to be of mixed
qualities producing mixed effects, as indeed all effects are of a mixed nature.
Chap. 95. Of Metals.
ALL Metals are created after the manner of circle lines, as water, only the
lines in metal are contracted, as drawing inwards, and water circle lines are
extended outward, but in all metals the circle lines are flat, and edged,
having a cutting and a subdividing nature, and by reason the exterior nature
is of a circle figure, it is apt to be fluid, and to flow as water doth, when
the exterior is melted by forcible motions, then it is one, as that of fire,
which draws out the contracted circles of metals, causing it to be fluid by
extention, yet the extention is not natural, as it is in water, but forced by
an over-powerful motion; for the nature of metal is not to be fluid, which is
the reason that as soon as it can get liberty, that is, when the more strong
motions let go their As if an Any mal creature should be pulled and dragged out
of its natural garb.
hold, it contracts into a firm and hard body: again, it breaks not the
interior circle, for then the nature alters, for as much as metals loses in
the weight, so much is changed of that quantity, from the natural quality, and
though some metals do not, wast in quantity, which is to change in quality, so
soon as others, yet they are all dissolvable, although some say gold is not
dissolvable; but sure that opinion proceeds from impatience in man-kinde, not
to stay the time, or rather for want of longer time of life, having not so
lasting a life, as to observe the alteration, as the dissolution of gold, or
perhaps they have not the right ways to dissolve it; for certainly it is as
all other figures are, dissolvable, and not fixed everlastingly in one body,
Chemists make gold as a god, unalterable.
Chap. 96. Of the Load-stone.
ME thinks 'tis strange, that men should wonder more at the nature of the
Load-stone in attracting iron, and in the norths attracting o f the needle
touched with the Loadstone, then at the suns attracting of vapor.
But some will say, that it is the nature of fluiditie, of which nature vapor
is one, to move with facility, and not the nature I mean here the exterior
nature not the interior nature.
of solidity, of which nature iron is one, which is heavy and slow; but I say,
if the attracting motion in one body be stronger then the contracting, and
retentive motions in the other body, and those figures motions work with, be
advantageous; I see no reason but a fluid body may attract a solid body; For it
is not the substance of the body that works, or produces effects, but the
agility, subtility, or strength of motion, and advantage of the shape, so that
the working power is more in motion and figure, then merely the matter; as for
example, doth not experience prove that fluid, vitral, will work through solid
metal, the reason is, because the expulsive motions in the vitral and sharp
points, are stronger then the contracting motions, in the metal and blunt
edges: but some will ask me, why the Load-stone attracts only iron? such a
question I ask, why beauty should forcibly attract the eye? they will answer by
sympathy; and I have heard, that it was the opinion of learned men, that
sympathy had the same effect, betwixt the Load-stone and iron, but I think it
not so much in sympathy, as supremacy.
Besides, it is the nature of contracting motions, of which the Load-stone is
strongly inhabited withal, to work on that which is without it, as from it, not
within it, or as it were upon it, which no other visible kind of motion doth.
And certainly the Load-stone is composed of sharp figures, yet not of such
sorts as heats or burns, and those figures do issue out as beams do from the
sun: and as they draw the iron, they back return, and as the bright beams issue
from the sun, do neither weaken nor lessen it, so the visible beams that issue
out of the Load-stone, neither make it lesser or weaker; yet the beams of the
Load-stone, do as the sun beams, the farther they spread out, the less
strength they have to draw; Besides, if other motions which oppose, and are
stronger then the natural motions, may weaken the strength, as accidental
maladies mayweaken Animals, or shrewd and froward weather vegetables, or the
natural consisting motions proper to that figure, may turn to expulsive
motions, and over-power the natural attracting motions, that issued there-from.
But as I have said, it seems the attractive power of the Loadstone, is
stronger then the irons retentive power, and sharp figures that issue
there-from, are more advantageous then the blunt edges in the iron; and as the
sharp figures in fire unknit and loosen the contractive body of metals, making
them fluid, so the sharp points that issue in lines from the Load-stone fasten
to iron, drawing it to it; and as fire works upon several bodies after a
different manner of way, according to the nature of the body it works on,
producing divers effects; so for all I can perceive may the Load-stone; for
certainly we do not know, nor never can come to that knowledge, as to perceive
the several effects, that are produced from the least, or as we account the
most inconsiderable creature made in nature; so that the Load-stone may work as
variously upon several bodies, as fire, and produce as various effects,
although nor to our sense, nor after the same manner of ways, that fire doth,
and as fire works variously upon various bodies, so there are fires, as several
sorts, and those several ral sorts have several effects, yet one and the same
kind, but as the causes in nature are hid from us, so are most of the effects;
but to conclude my discourse, we have only found that effect of the
Load-stone, as to draw iron to it; but the attracting motion is in obscurity,
being invisible to the sense of man, so that his reason can only discourse,
bring probabilities, to strengthen his arguments, having no perfect knowledge
in that, nor in any thing else, besides that knowledge we have of several
things, comes as it were by chance, or by experience, for certainly all the
reason man hath, would never have found out that one effect of the Load-stone,
as to draw iron, had not experience or chance presented it to us, nor the
effect of the needle, and all the ages before, I mean those we have Records of,
were ignorant of that one effect, and perchance other ages may find out some
other effects produced therefrom, which these ages are ignorant of; And as our
knowledge comes slow, and in parts, and pieces, so we know but parts and pieces
of every particular thing, neither is the generality of our senses capable of
one and the same knowledge; for what one sense knows, another sense is
ignorant of, and questionless there are some things in nature that it is
impossible for our senses to be made acquainted therewith, as being too curious
for our senses, but not to some other senses; for (...) nature hath as many
different senses, as other works; indeed all things are wrought by sensitive
motions, which (...) needs create a sensitive knowledge in every thing, and
where knowledge is, reason is; for knowledge is reason, and sense is knowledge;
but sense and reason work in several figures, different ways, and not only in
different figures, but in one and the same figure.
Chap. 96. Of the needle.
I Perceive the norths attraction of the Load-stone is not after the same
manner of attraction, as the Load-stone attracts iron, for the attractions of
the Load-stone draws iron to it, but the attraction of the north draws the
Load-stone towards it, by the turning it that way, as the Sun will do the the
heads of some sorts of flowers; For if the north attracted the Load-stone, as
the Load-stone iron, the Load-stone would be in a perpetual motion, travelling
to the north pole, unless it were fixed, but I do not hear that a Load-stone
doth remove out of the place wherein it is, but it turns, as I may say, the
face towards it; now the question will be whether the Loadstone turns it self
towards the north, or the north turns by compulsion, or by sympathy, the
experiment will be by iron, that if a great quantity of iron should be said at
one side of the needle, whether the needle would not vary from the north
towards the iron, if it do, it shows the Load-stone turns itself towards the
north, or else it could not turn from the north, for certainly the north hath a
greater operative power to turn the Load-stone to it, then the Load-stone could
have to turn it self from it, so if a quantity of iron can cause the needle to
vary, it shows that the Load-stone turns to the north by a self motion, and not
the motions of the north that make it turn to it, but if it varies not towards
the iron, then the north forces it, unless the Load-stone takes more delight
to view the norths frowning face, then to embrace hard iron, or that the
feeding appetite is stronger then the viewing delight; for it only turns it
self to the face of the north, but if it turns not it self, the north forces it
to turn, which as I have said before, is to be found by the experiments of
iron; but if it turns it self, I believe it may receive some refreshments from
those rays which stream from the north, for all things turn with self-ends;
for certainly every thing hath selflove, even hard stones, although they seem
insensible, so the Load-stone may work as various effects upon several
subjects, as fire, but by reason we have not so much experience of one as the
other, the strangeness creates a wonder, for the old saying is, that ignorance
is the mother of admiration, but fire which produces greater effects by
invisible motions, yet we stand not at such amaze as at the Load-stone, because
these effects are familiar unto us.
But per chance the Load-stone is nourished by iron as many creatures are by
heat, for though the creatures are nourished there with, yet the heat alters
not its virtue, nor the body in whichthe heat inheres, loses not the property
of heating, the sun is not weakened by warming the earth, though the earth is
stronger by the warm 'th of the sun; but warm 'th feeds after a spiritual
manner, not a corporal, and as somethings are nourished by warm'th, so others
by cold, as ice, snow, and many other things that are above number.
So the Load-stone may be refreshed, although not fed by the cold north, and as
fire is fed by fuel, so is the vertual part of the Load-stone by iron, or as
exercise gets health and strength to Animal bodies, so doth the Load-stone on
iron, and as idleness breeds faintness, or weakness, (...) doth the
Load-stone from iron.
Chap. 98. Of stone.
FIre hath more power over Metals in some sense, then on stone, and in some
sense hath more power over stone then I mean the heaviest metal to the hardest
stone, as gold to diamonds, or tin, or lead to a soft stone
For fire will sooner melt metal, then dissolve stone, but when the exterior
form of stone is dissolved, it is changed from the nature of being stone, and
be comes dust and ashes.
And though metal would likewise change the interior nature, if the exterior
form were dissolved, yet metal, although it be melted, keeps the interior
nature, and exterior form, but not the exterior motions; for metal is metal
still, although it be melted, only it becomes fluid, this shows that fire
doth not only alter the exterior motion of stone, but dissolves, the exterior
form, and so the interior nature, which in metal it doth not, unless a more
forcible fire be applied thereto then will serve to melt; which shows, that
although the interior motions of stone be contractions, as all solid bodies
are, yet the interior, nor exterior natural figure is not circular as metals
are, for stone cannot be made fluid, and as it were liquid as metal will be,
but crumbles into dust, and wastes, as wood or the like, and not evaporates away
as water, which metal doth; This shows that the exterior and interior natural
form of stone is composed of parts, and not in one piece, as a circle; I do not
mean in one piece, as the exterior bulk, but in one piece, in the exterior, and
interior nature; For though you may pound, or file metal to dust, that dust as
small as Atoms, the like may be done to stone, wood, and flesh, or any thing
that is dividable, yet it will keep the nature of being metal, stone, wood,
flesh, or the like, although the parts be no bigger then an Atom; but if you do
dissolve the exterior nature, the interior nature doth dissove also, thus the
exterior form may be altered, but not dissolved, without a total dissolution.
Chap. 99. Of burning.
ALL that is hot is not of a burning faculty, nor all that is burning is not
actually hot, and though Burning Motions work several ways according to the
temperament of the matter, and composure of the figures it meets with, yet the
nature of all kinds of burnings is to expulse by a piercing and subdividing
faculty, provided that the burning Motions, and burning figures are strong
enough to encounter what opposes them; but when the opposed bodies and motions
have an advantage, either by strength, or otherwise, it alters the nature and
faculty of burning, and many times there is great dispute and long combats
amongst the several motions, and different figures, for the preheminency.
Chap. 100. Of different burning.
THough all that is of a burning nature, or faculty may be called fire, yet all
that hath a burning nature, or faculty is not of that sort of fire, which is a
bright, shining, hot, glowing fire, as for example, vitrals, brimstone, oil, or
spirits, or that we call cordials, or hot-waters, or any of the like nature.
Besides all burning figures, or motions, work not after one and the same
manner, though after one and the same nature, being all of a burning quality,
or faculty, for some burn interiorly, others exteriorly, but as I havesaid all
burning, is of a subdividing faculty.
Chap. 101. Fires transformation.
THe interior, and exterior figures of hot, glowing, burning, bright, shining
fire are all one, and the motions working apart according to the nature of the
figure it works on can change every thing it hath power over, into its own
likeness, yet the power, and strength doth alter somewhat according to the
work, and becomes grosser, and finer, accoring to the temperaments, or degrees
of that which they work on: as for example, wood that is set on fire, or a fiery
coal, is a grosser body of fire, then flaming oil, or the like, that is such a
sort of moist fluid matter set on fire, for fire takes hold, of the thinnest
parts, as well as the thickest; if they be such thin bodies which are subject
to take fire, for when fire is set to wood, it doth not only take hold of the
solid'st parts, but those that are more porous, or fluid, as those that rise in
smoke, which become a flaming body, which is a fluid fire, but there is a cold,
dull, burning fire, as well as a hot, bright, burning, as all strong vitrals,
and this we call hot water, or spirits, which have an exterior nature to burn,
or dissolve other bodies, and an interior nature to flame, but it hath not an
exterior nature to be hot, nor shining.
Also there is another sort of fire, which only hath an interior nature to
flame, but the exterior is neither actually burning, nor hot, as sulphur, or
oil, though oil is nothing, but a liquid sulphur, and sulphur a hardened oil.
But this cold dull fire hath not the power of transforming to its own
likeness, by reason there is some difference in the interiors to their
exteriors, where the quick, hot, burning, bright, shining fire, the exterior
and interior is all one, without any difference.
Chap. 102. Of such sorts of heating Motions, as cause burning, melting,
boiling, Evaporating and rarefying.
BUrning, melting, boiling, and evaporating are caused by several motions, or
several degrees or temperaments of matter.
And though burning, melting, boiling, and evaporating, are caused by expulsive
and dilating motions, yet al dilative and expulsive motions, work not after one
and the same manner, but according as the matter is; As for example, leather
doth not burn as wood doth, yet both are dissolved by an expulsive motion.
Besides, some figures do dissolve into flame, others moulder away into dust,
and never flame, as stone, and many more examples may be given, but most
commonly all burning motions do pierce, or shut, or wedge, in sharp toothed, or
pointed figures; into those figures they work upon, and then it dissolves it by
expulsions; for those sharp pointed figures, help motion to loosing, and
unbinde those parts that they find joined and contracted, that they may more
freely separate those parts and dissolve those figures, which as they dissolve
the thinner parts, dilate into vapor, the lighter parts fly out into fiery
points, which are those we call sparks of fire, but the grosser, and more solid
part moulders away into dust and ashes, as being too heavy and solid for the
points to spread forth, they can only as it were chew it between their sharp
teeth; for ashes are nothing but chewed wood, yet this manner of chewing doth
alter the nature from being wood, or any thing that burns after an expulsive
manner, but those fiery motions that only melt, or rather those figures that
are not subject to burn, but only to melt, is done by a stretching motion, for
those motions do as it were thrust out the contracted parts, and cause them to
extenuate; but when the fiery motions cause any thing to boil, they first
stretch out the parts so far, as causes those parts to be fluid, and as it
were liquid, if those things were contracted, but if they be liquid and fluid
of themselves, they save those fiery motions that labour, and when this motion
strives to ascend with those loose parts, the liquor rises up in bubbles, or
waves, but when those fiery motions are over-poured by the weight, they fall
back again; thus the weight of the liquor, and the sharp points of the fire
strive together, one party striving to ascend, the other to descend, so that
those fiery motions, are to pull out, or to bear up, and the watery motion to
pull, or press down, but evaporating, is when the extenuating lines are
stretched so far out, as to break, or the lighter parts are carried away, and
dispersed amongst other figures; but all rarefying heats, are caused by slow
dilating motions, and not expulsions, for if such sorts of dilations as make
rarefying heat, were extended beyond the line of the matter they work on, it
alters the nature of the figure, and the motions of that nature; but rarefying
heat is an extenuating motion, spreading parts equally, and evenly, but the
farther they are spread, the more hot grows the heat, as nearer to expulsion,
and though all rarefying heat is in the way of burning, yet not in the manner.
But I must entreat my reader to take notice, that burning motions, make use of
burning figures, for all sorts of motions work according to the matter and
figure they work on, or in, or to.
Chap. 103. Of quenching of fire.
THere is such Antipathy betwixt fire, and some sorts of wets, as such wets as
are made by smooth extenuating circles, as they never can agree when they do
personally meet; and indeed such sorts of wets, have such power over hot,
burning, bright shining fire, as they never encounter, but fire is in danger to
be quenched out, if there be not a sufficient quantity to break the watery
circles, for it is not the coldness that quenches fire, but such sorts of
wetnesse, for scalding water will quench out fire, and many sorts of liquors as
wine, or the like, although they be flameable, yet if they be cast on this
bright, hot, burning fire, it will quench it out, by reason they are more of
the wet nature; then the oily, and sulphurous, or the burning or flaming
Tis true, that there are many liquors that are subject to burn, but there are
few wets that have not power to quench, for the spherical drops do either blunt
the fiery points, or disperse the the united body, or entangle them in the
porous circles.
Thus water hath the better unless the lines break in the combat, but when
fire and water treat apart, or by an Attorney, or hath a body betwixt them to
Moderate their As Vessels wherein water is put, and fire underneath.
spleens they agree better, but in this treaty most commonly the water becomes
weak by rarification, and evaporates into air by too strong, or too much
extenuating, extending further then the wet compass.
Chap. 104. Of the quenching of fire, and evaporated Water.
THe reason why water quenches fire, is, that the figure being spherical, and
porous, gives distance and space of parts, where the sharp figures of fire,
flying about to bite the circular lines asunder, that they may ravel out that
figure of water, lose their strength both in their ffight and compass,
breaking their forces, by dispersing their parts, and entangling their
dispersed parts in the hollow places, in the watery figure, like arrows that are
shot into a net, seldom break the net, but entangle themselves, by reason there
is no firm substance to strict on, or in; for being soft and spungy, there is
no stop, nor hold; besides water being wet and wet in the nature is sticking,
that when those sharp points do at any time break the lines, they join again,
for being fluid each part moves to each other, and being wet they join, and
being circular they unite, into the natural figure.
Thus in a plain combat water most commonly hath the better of fire, if there
be not too much odds on the fires fide for quantity, but when fire doth come by
an undermining motion as when some other figures are betwixt them, then fire
gets the better, by the help of those undermining motions.
Chap. 105. Of a bright-shining hot, glowing, fire.
IT is the nature of bright-shining, hot-glowing fires, to have both an
interior, and an exterior burning, and is of such a kind of subdividing
nature, as it strives to dissolve all united parts, or bodies, and if it doth
not dissolve all bodies it works on, as we shall see many things which grow
harder with fire, yet is not that the nature would not dissolve such a thing,
but the power cannot, for those bodies that grow harder with This sort of
contraction is drawing inward.
fire, opposes the power of fire, and strives by contraction to unite the
looser parts, in a more solid body, to resist with more strength.
Also some bodies grow hard by shrinking inward, for as soon Those sorts are
falling backward.
as they feel the fire, they draw back, as from an enemy, having an Antipathy
Thus, it is not the fire that dries or hardens, or makes more The contracting
motions too strong for the expulsive motions.
solidity, but the opposite body that will not burn, having a strength to
oppose, or a nature not to subject to this fire, or the fire hath not a
sufficient power to overcome, but this sort of fire hath a general power,
though some bodies will strongly resist it; but it is the nature of this sort
of fire, that most bodies they overcome, they first convert them into their Yet
there are but few bodies that are not overcome at last.
own likeness, but their natures being different, their prisoners die in the
fiery arms of their enemies.
Chap. 106. Of the dryness of hot, burning, bright, shining fire.
Dryness hath such a relation to hot, burning, bright, shining fire, as
moistness to water, for though interior motions are expulsive, yet the
exterior is attractive, drawing all unto it, like a greedy appetite, and as the
teeth doth mince the the food that is chewed, so doth the pointed figure, of
fire, all it lays hold on, or enters into.
Chap. 107. Of moist colds, and moist heats, of dry colds, and dry heats c.
HEat doth not make drought, for there is a temper of heat, and moist; nor cold
doth not make drought; for there is a temper of cold, and moist; nor heat doth
not make moisture, for there is a temper of hot, and dry, nor cold doth not
make moisture; for there is a temper of cold, and dry, but when the motions of
heat, and the motions of drought join, they cause hot and dry effects, and when
the motions of cold, and the motions of drought join, they cause cold and dry
effects, and when the motions of heat, and the motions of moisture joins, they
cause hot and moist effects; and when the motions of cold, and the motions of
moisture join, they cause cold and moist effects, yet there are infinite
varieties in their several effects; but those motions which make cold and heat,
I may fimilife to wandering armies, of the Gothes, and Vandals, which over-run
all figures, as they all the world, I mean the matter that made it.
sometimes they work attractive, contractive, retentive, disgustive, expulsive,
according to the temper and degree of matter, and proportion and shape of the
figures they meet, or according to their own power and strength, and although
both cold and heat, are motions that work more or less upon all the figures in
this world, yet cold heat works not upon figure alike, but differ as their
figures differ, nor are cold and heat directly the same motions, although they
be of the same kind of motions, no more then several sorts of beasts kind,
yet all beasts are of Animal kind, and most commonly like several sorts of
beasts that falls out, or rather like two equal powerful Monarchies, that
oppose one another power, and fight for preheminency, where sometimes one gets
the better, and then the other, sometimes by strength, and sometimes by
advantage, but when there is a truce, or a league, they have a common commerce,
joining their motions, working sympathetically together, which produces an
equal temper.
Chap. 108. Of the motions of cold, and heat, drouth, and Moisture.
COld and heat, are not wrought by different kinds of motions, but after a
different manner of workings or movings, for a moist cold, and a moist heat,
are but one kind of motions, as being motions that extenuate, and enlarges
from the center to the circumference; for a moist heat, doth thrust, or drive
outward, as toward the circumference.
A moist cold doth pull, or draw from the center towards the circumference. As
for example, we shall often see a gardiner that rolls a green turft walk, to
thrust the roll before him, and when he is weary with pressing forward, he will
turn his arms behind him, and pull the roll after him.
Also a dry, or congealed cold, and a dry heat, are not several kinds of
motions, but moves after several manners; for as moist cold, and heat extends,
and enlarges from the center, to the circumference, so a dry heat, or a dry, or
congealed cold, contracts from the circumference towards the center, the
congealed cold in several works; a dry cold, or a dry heat only draws into a
less space, or compass, yet the same difference in the manner of the motions,
is between a dry heat, and a dry cold, as was between a moist heat, and a most
cold; for a dry heat drives from the circumference to the center; a dry cold
draws from the circumference to the center for although al drought is from the
circumference to the center, and all moisture from the center to the
circumference, yet the several manner of movings are infinite, also cold, and
heat are not several kinds of motions, but different motions, as every man is
of man-kinde, but they are different men.
And if we observe the effects of heat, and cold, we shall find them to work
after one and the same manner; for very sharp colds, and great heats, pains
equally; and sharp colds destroy with as great strong fury, as burning heats;
neither can I perceive that burning heats have swifter motions, then sharp
colds; for water to the quantity shall freeze, as soon as any light matter shall
burn; for water shall be as soon frozen, as straw burnt, take quantity for
quantity, and Animals shall be as soon frozen to death if they be touched, or
struck with very sharp colds, such as are near the poles, as be burnt under the
torrid Zone; as for plants, we oftener see them killed As several men will.
with cold, then heat, and I perceive there is no thaw so sudden, as a frost;
for when any thing is frozen, it is not suddenly thawed, which half persuades
me, that cold is the quicker motion; but howsoever we perceive they do often
dispute for the mastry, when some time the cold predominates, and sometimes the
heat. But when there is an amity, as peace among neighbours and friends.
and friendship between both, then it is temperate weather.
Chap. 109. Of dry heats, and cold, and of moist heats and colds.
ALL dry heats, and colds, are created, or produced by such manner of motions,
as pleating, folding, surfling, crumpling, knitting, linking, brading, tieing,
binding into a less compass, or space.
All moist heats, and moist colds, are created, or produced by such manner of
motions, as smoothing, planing, stricking, or stretching; but burning heats,
are like those motions that prick a sheet of paper full of holes, or dart it,
or cut it, but there are infinite of these several kinds of motions, which make
these several heats, and colds, working according to the several degrees, or
temperaments of matter, and the composers of figures, but l only set these few
notes to make my discourse, as easy to my readers understanding as I can; for
it is a difficulty to express several motions, although they be so gross as
to be visible to the optic sense.
Chap. 110. Of shining figures.
ALL figures that are composed of lines, are the aptest to shine, because lines
are the evenest measure, and I say aptest, not as they do.
the smoothest rule, for mathematical motions to work with, but according as
the lines, either exterior, or interior is smooth or rough, contracted or
extenuated, shines more or less; for some lines are interiorly even, and
smooth, and exteriorly rough and unequal, as pointed lines, or chekred, or
millions the like.
Others are exteriorly even, and interiorly rough, as lines of points, some are
interiorly rough, and exteriorly rough as lines of points pointed and some are
interiorly smooth, and exteriorly smooth, which are drawn out even, as one
piece, and not composed of parts.
Chap. 111. The motions that make natural air, and day light.
NAtural air, which is not metamorphosed air, is made by such kind of motions,
as makes cloth that is spun threads weaved, as with shuttles in a loom; so some
motions spin threads of thin dull matter, and other motions interweave those
threads, where the grossest sort makes the thicker air, as great threads make
course cloth, and the thinner matter makes the serenest air, as small threads
make the finest cloth; where some is like cobweb-lawn, so sheer, or clear, as
the smallest objects may be seen through, which is spread about the globe of
the earth, as a thin vail over a face, or body, and from the sun rising, the
motions that make light run in lines upon it, and so is like a garment laid all
over with silver-twist, or rather like silverwier, from the sun rising to high
noon, it is as it were, setting, sewing, or imbroidering on; this serene air at
mid-day it is quite finished, and by sun set it is quite reaped off again.
And to show that the lines of light are as it were laid upon this serene air,
and not mixed into it, is by the vapor which gathers into dark clouds, which
will obscure the light, as far as they spread, besides if the light were
intermixed the motions and matter could not so easily, nor so quickly withdraw,
or intermingle, as we see they do; for what is intermixed, is hard to separate;
but dark clouds are only as spots, which by rarification are rubbed out, if
they be wet spots, or drops, they fall out in shours of rain, but by such sorts
of motions as by ringing, or squeezing, or griping with a hand, or the like,
which breaks the sea, or waves of water, which are clouds, into several streams
of drops, sometimes with a greater force, and sometimes with a less, according
as the motions are stronger, or weaker.
The difference betwixt this serene, and natural air, and the metamorphosed
air, is as a natural face, and a mask which is put on, or put off according as
the watery circles contract, or dilate; the other in probability may be as
lasting as the sun it self, not being subject to change, but by a natural
creation or dissolution.
Chap. 112 Of light.
LIght is made by such a kind of motion as heat, being an equal extenuating
motion, but the difference is, that the motions that make heat, is a spreading
motion, but light is made by a spining motion, equally drawing out long parallel
lines, with an extraordinary swiftness, evennesse, smallness, and
Chap. 113. The reflections of light.
THe reflections of light when are the innated matter draws even lines with
equal motions backwards (as I may say) for when their motions are stopped, with a
more solid matter, then that which they work on to make light, where touching,
or beating thereon, they do not break their lines, but the leading innated
matter, which makes light, returns back in equal lines, with equal motions, so
as there becomes equal lines of light, only as some lines run forward, others
run backward, but in straight parallel lines, not crossed, nor perturbed; for
when these motions are crossed, or perturbed, it doth as troubled waters do, the
one rising in several colours, as the other in waves, so the colours are the
waves, or billows of light.
Chap. 114. Of light, and reflections.
NO question but there are as many various lights, as faces, and as different
kinds of lights, as there are different Animals, or vegetables, or minerals, as
some I will here set down for distinction, the sun light, the lighs of the fixed
stars, the fire light, meteor light, glow-worm light, rotten wood light, the
light of fishes bones, and there are many sorts of stones which will sparkle in
the dark, as diamonds, and many I cannot recount. Then there are produced
lights, as day from the sun, flame from fire, then there are reflected lights,
as the planets, and reflected lights from reflected lights, as the light from
the planets on the earth, and infinite reflections made by several motions on
figures, for on every figure are several reflections.
Chap. 115. Of some opinions of light, darkness, and Death.
SOme say light is nothing but a motion, but there can be no motion without
some matter, for where there is no matter, there is nothing to move; but light,
as other effects are, is made by such kind of motions on such degrees, or
tempered matter, and so is heat, and cold, and darkness made by several
motions, on such matter, although some opinions are, that darkness is nothing
but an absence of light, as some think death is a cessation of motion; Tis
true, death is an alteration of such kind of motions, as we call life; so
darkness is not made by such motions as make light, for there are motions
belong to darkness, as well as those to make light; so there be many several
motions, in dissolving of figures, which dissolution we call death, as the
creating of a figure, which we call life.
Chap. 116. Of darkness.
THose motions which make darkness, seem to be as swift motions, as those that
make light, for the air is as soon made dark as light; but some do say, there
is no motion in darkness, and that darkness is a cessation of motion; Tis
true, of such kind of motions as make light; but not of all motions, no more
then the motion of the sun makes all light, or the absence of the sun makes all
darkness; for first the sun is not the only light, for we can set up lights,
when that is gone, by fire, whose flames do illuminate that part of air, that
is nearest, and could we make a fire as big as the sun, and feed it
perpetually, we might have a perpetual day, and the air I speak this as a
comparison, for I know the sun is much bigger then the earth.
will be as much illuminated, if there were a sufficient fire, to inlighten so
much air at one time, as the sun doth; wherefore the sun is not the monopler of
such kind of motions, as make light. And can we rationally think there is no
motion in darkness, because the motions of the suns light are gone from our
Hemisphear, we may as well say a fish cannot swim, because such a horse doth
not gallop, but to my fancy darkness works upon the air, as well as light; for
a dark cloud shall obscure the light, as well as the light shall pierce through
a dark cloud; thus darkness covers many times the face of the light, which
shows it is not always the with-drawing of light which makes darkness, since
darkness hath as much power over the light, as the light over darkness, but
obstructed motions make darkness, and hinder those equal motions which make
light, and those motions that make mists, and fogs, are in some degree like the
motions which make darkness, and so are such motions as make colours, but the
motions of darkness seem to be intermixing motions, as I may say snarled
motions, which entangle themselves, and the different motions of darkness, and
light, are like skeines of silk, where the light is like thread which is pulled
out even and straight.
And darkness is like a skein of silk, which is so insnarled, or broken, as
not any can find a leading thread, being full of ends, knots and entercourses.
Chap. 117. The motions that make Darkness.
THe motions of darkness upon the air, are after another manner, then those of
light, for as light is laid in such small, straight, even, out-drawn lines, so
darkness is like motions of silk imbroidery, the work to be bossy, full of
intermixing stiches, and cross threads, knotted and purled after this manner.
And the reason I say silk, is, because darkness is softer then light, which
light I similise to silver, for the brightness of light many times hurts the
optics, which darkness doth not.
Chap. 118. Of Shadows.
SHadows are copies, and pictures, drawn, or printed, or engraven by dark
motions, for dark lines made by the eclipsed light, are as the pencel, or the
like, the light is the paint, the solid body on which shadows are cast, is the
ground or substance to work on, motion is the artificer; for several lights are
like so many several sorts of paintings; for colours are but a perturbed light
as some say, but to show it is darkness that doth pencel out, is that there
would be no such representments, if darkness were not; and too much light
drowns the figure, or is as it were plash'd, or dabbed out, or if so much paint
were spilt, or cast on the ground without order; Yet all shadows are not as if
they were painted, but printed in black and white, as against a wall, or on
water, or the like, but on a looking-glasse, or on a piece of paper through a
little hole, in a dark room, it is as painted, the colours being represented as
well as the figures.
Chap. 119. Of shadows and airy figures.
SHadows are printed, or engraven, or painted by those motions, which make
darkness upon inlightned air, but the print is not seen, but upon a solid
ground, or flat, as I may say, which ground must be opposite to the figure it
represents, which is after this manner, as one figure makes more, for the
figure makes a figure, that is, the external motion of the external figure cuts
out a figure of air; for questionless wheresoever our bodies are, there is the
figure in air; for we are always encompast about with air, wherein we make
prints of our figures; for the solid bodies print their figures in that which
is more porous, and softer substance, as a seal on wax, or a print on butter,
or the like; thus the solid bodies as they remove, still make new prints
perpetually, and infinitely, but as they remove, the prints melt out like
verbal and vocal sounds, which print words, and set notes in the air, and the
reason we uannot see the letter in the air, as well as hear the sound, is, that
the air being so porous, is proper only to convey a sound to the ear, or to
spread it abroad; but not solid enough to fix the eye thereon, having not
substance to hold an object so long a time as to take notice thereof, unless
it be drawn into a shadow upon a substantial ground, on which the eye may fix;
but until the figurative be cast upon a solid ground, the figures are like
sculpture, but when they are drawn in shadows upon a ground, it is as painting,
or printing.
Chap. 120. Of a more probable opinion to me of light making several colours.
THe lines of light are whole and come so from the sun until the light of such
a figure, and according to the figure, there the lines are broken, and the
breaking of light a ccording to the several figures, makes several colours, so
it is not inherent in the thing, but in the form of the thing, which is the
figure that makes several colours breaking the several lines of light several
ways, so the Diers of several colours by their observations finds it out by
their practise, though they know not the reason of it, but the true reason is,
that all those several dies make several figures, which several figures break
the lines of light several ways, which being broken several ways produce all
those several colours.
To show you that it is several figure that breaks the lines of light that make
several colours, you may see it in a pigeons neck and breast, how many various
colours it will change into, with and in the same place, the lines of light
being broken several ways by the pigeons feathers, that make several figures,
as also you may perceive in Rain-bows, the sun shining upon a watery cloud, the
cloud being between you, and the sun what various colours there are, so to
spout water out of your mouth, if it be between me and the sun, it makes the
same colours, and all this is nothing else, but that the lines of light are
broken so many ways, by the several forms and figures it shines of, which
produces the multiplicity of all those various colours.
Again, more plainly to make it appear, that there can be no more truth but
this in colour, take a triangular glass it is all of one colour, and was never
sent to the diers, and look in it, and you shall see the most various colours
in the world, the colours are not in the glass, therefore with rational man it
suffers no dispute at all, that colour is nothing else, but the lines of light
broken by several forms, and figures, that produces all the various colours
that are in the world. And for excellent disputants, that make Aristotle their
church of reason, that cannot err, and will maintain his nonsense against
reason, I leave them to their ignorance, and wish they would rather follow his
Logic, and his Rhetoric, then his natural Philosophy, for their own sakes.
Chap. 121. Of Colours.
SOme say colours are made by perturbed or obstructed light, but in my opinion,
colours are broken lines of light; for when light is obstructed as being
stopped it reflects with double light, those lines returning back like double
strings, and if it were perturbed light, like over-agitated air, or troubled
and rough waters, the light would be only thicker, and mudier, having not
liberty to move in so level, even, and straight, parallel lines; it is true,
those perturbed motions may be the cause many times of breaking the light,
which broken parts contracting into several figures, or works, causes several
colours, every particular work, being a several colour, and when these several
figurative works are mixed, being part of one work, and part of another, the
colours are also mixed.
For the several works made of the pieces of light, are that which makes
several colours, and not the pieces of light without those works, for if those
pieces of light lay scattered and not contracted into several figurative
works, they could, or would not make colours, but if colours are not made by
pieces of light, they are made by contracting the straight unbroken lines of
light, which contraction turns light into colours, as contractions do water
into snow, ice, hail, frost; Now it is to be observed, that it is not only the
contracted motions on the water that make the difference, but being contracted
into such or such a figure; for whenever water is contracted into such a
manner of figure, it is snow, if into such a figure it is hail, if in such a
figure it is ice, into such a figure frost, and may do so constantly, and
eternally, and so when light is contracted into such a figure, it is red, when
into such a figure, blue, into such a figure, yellow, into such a figure green,
and when it is contracted partly into the figure of red, and partly into the
figure of blue, it makes a figure of purple, and if it be contracted partly
into the figure of red, and partly into the figure of blue, and partly into the
figure of purple, it makes a fourth figure, which is a fourth colour, and so a
fifth, and so infinites, likewise one and the same figure which is one perfect
colour, may vary with each patticular figure, which is each particular colour,
and upon what body soever these figures are printed, they take colours, and
according as the figures differ, the colours are changed, or alter; for it is
not the body that they are printed on, or the reflections of light, cast upon
such bodies that make colours, but such figures made by contracted lines of
light, which figurative works give such colours to any thing they can print, or
place on, but the reason why I think they are rather broken pieces of light
contracted, then contracted straight lines, is, because they are so lasting,
for though some colours will fade sooner, yet some will last a long time; for
whatsoever work is wrought with parts, as I may say, several pieces of thread,
is not so apt to undo or ravel out, as that which is but of one piece, unless
the thread were circular, without ends, but lines of light are paralels, and
not circles, as for shadows of colours, in my opinion they are produced after
this manner as I said, the figure of blue or the like, which is one perfect
colour, and the figure of red which is another perfect colour makes a third
figure, which is a mixed colour, likewise blue and yellow makes a different
figure, which is a different colour from blue and red, and blue and yellow,
makes a different figure, which is a different colour from blue and green, so
we may match figures until we be weary, but whatsoever hath constantly part of
one and the same figure, in the several or single compartments of other
figures, which are other colours, as blue and green, blue and red, blue and
yellow; and the like appears in shadows, by reason one particular figure, or
figurative part is the ground-work, which is, the ground colour, which makes
all the colours it mixes with, partly of its own complexion, and according as
there are more or less, of that figure, the shadow is fainter or stronger, and
according as the contractions are more or less, the colours are deeper, or
paler; for those figures that are closer contracted, and rougher wrought, are
the darkest colours, as nearest to black, and those figures that are loosest,
contracted, and finer wrought, ars the the lightest, or palest colours, as
being most light, when the parts are loosest, and most at liberty, and the
brightest, as the most glorious colours that are made of the purest, and
clearest light, which is of the smallest lines of light, as I may say, the
finest threaded light, for some lights are thicker then others, by reason their
lines are grosser.
Also colours which are broken contracted lines of light, may appear darker, or
brighter according to the reflection, of other lights, or rather according to
the straight and unbroken lines of light are that cast upon them, likewise some
light doth alter the colours that are made by other lights, as some colours
appear not by candle-light as by day-light, and the reason is, that several
lines of several lights, being grosser, or finer, causes the colour to appear
duller or brighter, and some particular lights make some colours appear more
then others, and some particular lights obscure some particular colours more
then others, according as they are further, or nearer off the nature of each
other; for though the several figurative works make the several colours, yet it
is the lines and pieces of light, that make those figures and works.
Chap. 122. Of airy figures.
AS I said before, the solid bodies moving in the soft, more porous bodies,
make many figures therein, some as printed, some as painted, others as
sculpture, as cut, or carved in wood, or stone, or cast in metal, or moulded in
earth, some are as if a man, or the like creature should print themselves in
snow, others as if they should make themselves in snow, as for example; as if a
man should stand, and let the snow fall thick upon him until he were all
covered over, there would be his figure in snow, or if he should lie down in
snow, there would be his print; so it is in air, as we move from place to
place, new figures are made, and the former figures moulder, or melt out, but
according as the air is, so they last, or decay, for if the air be congealed
with cold, thickened with gross fogs or mist, the figures last the longer
therein, although in a misshapen posture, like ruinated buildings, or broken
statues, or like defeated armies, here an arm, or a piece of an arm, or a hand,
and there legs, here a head, there a mangled body; but when the air is thin,
and serene, the print dissolves as soon as the figure removes; and if the air
were as solid as snow, we should see the figures as perfect in the one, as in
the other; but the air being very thin, and porous, the sight of the eye runs
thorough without stay, or stop, taking no notice, like water in a sieve, wherein
nought can be contained, because there is no hold to keep the water in from
running out.
Chap. 123. Of External figures, and internal forms.
IN some things there is such sympathy betwixt the internal form, and the
external figure, as the alterations of the one, change the nature of the other;
as for fire, when the external figure is altered, the internal faculty is gone,
here the internal nature depends upon the exterior figure; but as for water,
the external figure may be changed, as we see when it is frozen, but the
internal nature not changed, for it is as water still, though it be not fluid,
here the internal depends not upon the external; but thus much the exterior
figures of all things depend so so much upon the exterior form, or nature, that
when the internal is changed, the exterior cannot be altered, from and to, as
to change the countenance or face, as I may say by contraction, and dilation,
as water, and metals, and many others, but an animal figure may remain, as it
was for a time, when the internal is changed, but not long, as for example,
Animals, although the internal nature, and faculty be As we say dead.
changed, which is to move after such a manner, as is proper for Animal, the
external figure is not altered: for when Animals are dead, the external, which
is the outward shape remains perfect, for a time, yet the internal motions may
be in disorder, as they are in animals that sound, or are sick or faint, or in
vegetables that are fading, or drooping; but when the internal motions move
orderly again, either of themselves, or by the help of assistant motions, and
figures, the Animal is as it was before, and the Vegetable flourishes green
again, thus there may be an alteration; but when there is an absolute change in
the internal, there can be no return, but by a new creation, for all
alterations of motions do not do it, but a total change.
Chap. 124. Earth, water, air, fire, cold, heat, light, darkness.
EArth, water, air, fire, cold, heat, light, darkness, is made as Animals,
Vegetables, and Minerals, that is, that such degrees of innated matter works
upon the dull part of matter with various motions, and several degrees, of dull
matter produces such effects joining parts together, and separating parts
asunder, but joining, and mixing each degree together, loses not the entity of
each degree, for that can never be altered, for as it was from all eternity, so
it will last to all eternity.
Chap. 125. The motions of the Sun, and Planets.
THe Sun, and the rest of the Planets, are questionless created as other
Animal creatures, and their local motions I thimk them to be Animals.
are according to the shape, as we see all Animals are, for a worm cannot run,
but only moves by gathering up the body from one place, and then stretching it
self out farther, or else by rolling, and winding his body from place to place,
nor beasts cannot flee as birds, nor birds cannot trot, amble, nor gallop, as
beasts, because they have no shape fitted thereto; for birds want four legs to
pace and gallop, and beasts want wings to flee, so the Planets move according
to their shape, turning about as a spherical circle about a center, and if the
sun runs about the world with such speed (as some old opinions are, it must
turn as a wheel about the spoke, or rundle as a bowl in the ecliptic line.
But if the sun, as some Modern opinions hold, doth not move out of his place,
but is as it were fixed, and that the Planets move about it, in circular ways
according to their shape, then the motions of the sun, are only by dilation,
and attractions: from which light, and heat proceeds, and vapor is drawn or
sucked up.