« ZurückWeiter »
Empedocles—Magenus, for raising the ghost of Democritus—Marsenius, for explaining many problems of Archimed—and Gassendus, for rebuilding
Epicurus, &c. &c. &c. 13. That he had observed, that philosophy, as well
as nature, continually declined ; and now the world was arrived at its dotage, the minds of men suffered a sensible decay of clarity ; wherefore he scorn'd to read any book less than an hundred years
old. 14. That he was a great admirer of antient coins,
and manuscripts, which if effaced, or obliterated
by time, in his opinion, were still the more valuable. 15. By the rest of his discourse he seem'd to esteem
every thing as Dutchmen do cheese, the better for
being mouldy. 16. Father. Affectation of any kind is lighting up
a candle to our defects, and shews want of judg
ment or sincerity. 17. The great actions of the antients, are apt to beget
our veneration ; those of the moderns, as they
school and reproach us, excite our envy. 18. Learning and civility were indeed derived down
to us from the eastern parts of the world ; there it was mankind arose, and there they first discovered the ways of living with safety, convenience, and delight,
19. The original of astronomy, geometry, govern
ment, and many sorts of manufactures we now enjoy, are justly attributed to the Assyrians, Chaldeans, and Egyptians.
Orpheus, Linus, Musæus, and Homer, first softned men's natural rudeness, and by the charms of their numbers allur'd them to be instructed by the severer doctrines of Solon, Thales, and Pythagoras.
In Greece, the city of Athens was the general school, and seat of education.
Socrates began to draw into some order the confused and obscure imaginations of those that went before him, and to adapt all parts of philosophy, to the immediate service of the affairs of
men, and uses of life. 23 With the Grecian empire their arts also were
transported to Rome, where the doctrines received from the Greeks were eloquently translated into the Latin tongue.
“ Antiquitas sæculi, juventus mundi.”
24. The antients may have justice done them,
without worshipping them, or despising the
moderns. 25. The heroical Tycho Brache-The subtil Kepler—The most acute Galilæus—The profound Scheinerus—The universally learned Kircherius, The most perspicuous Harvey-And the epitome of them all Des Cartes, by asserting philosophical liberty, have sufficiently vindicated the native privilege of our intellects, from the base villainage
of prescription. 26. When Plato, Aristotle, and other wise Grecians,
travell’d into the East, they collected and brought home many useful arts and secrets, yet were so far from blindly assenting to all that was taught them by the priests of Isis and Osyris, as to ridicule
their worshipping dogs, cats, onions, and crocodiles. 27. Collect out of the Pythagorean—the Stoick
the Platonist—the Academick—the Peripatetickthe Epicurean--the Pyrrhonian, or Sceptick—and all other sects, whatever of method, principles, positions, maxims, examples, &c. seem most consentaneous to Verity ; but refuse what will not endure the test of either right reason, or faithful
experiment. 28. Antiquity can no more privilege an error, than
novelty prejudice a truth.
But strictly search, and after careful view,
Too servile a submission to the books and opinions of the antients, has spoil'd many an ingenious man, and plagu'd the world with abundance of pedants and coxcombs.
But go on with your story.
Son. A Buffoon, skill'd in making wry mouths, mimical gestures, and antick postures, was ever misconstruing and perverting others words to a preposterous or filthy meaning, or shewing his parts in flat, insipid quibbles and clinches, jingling of words or syllables, in scraps of verses, or sensless rhimes, and in all the dregs and refuse of
His talk was obscene, his bantering too coarse, too rude, too bitter, or too pedantick, out of season,
or out of measure. 33. His jests were malicious, saucy, and ill natured,