OBSERVATIONS UPON EX …

OBSERVATIONS UPON EXPERIMENTAL PHILOSOPHY. To which is added, THE DESCRIPTION OF A New Blazing World.

WRITTEN By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent PRINCESSE, THE Duchess of Newcastle.

LONDON, Printed by A. Maxwell, in the Year, 1666.

TO HER GRACE THE Duchess of Newcastle, On her OBSERVATIONS upon EXPERIMENTAL PHILOSOPHY.

THis Book is Book of Books, and onely fits
Great searching Brains, and Quintessence of Wits;
For this will give you an Eternal Fame,
And last to all Posterity your Name:
You conquer Death, in a perpetual Life;
And make me famous too in such a Wife.
So I will Prophesie in spight of Fools,
When dead, then honour'd, and be read in Schools,
And Ipse dixit lost, not He, but She
Still cited in your strong Philosophy.
William Newcastle.

TO HIS GRACE THE Duke of Newcastle.

My Noble Lord,

IN this present Treatise, I have ven­tured to make some observations upon Experimental Philosophy, and to examine the Opinions of some of our Modern Microscopical or Dioptrical Writers; and though your Grace is not onely a lover of Vertuosoes, but a Vertuoso your self, and have as good, and as many sorts of Optick Glasses as any one else; yet you do not bu­sie your self much with this brittle Art, but employ most part of your time in the more noble and heroick Art of Horsemanship and Weapons, as also in the sweet and delightful Art of Poetry, and in the useful Art of [Page] Architecture, &c. which shews that you do not be­lieve much in the Informations of those Optick glasses, at least think them not so useful as others do that spend most of their time in Dioptrical inspections. The truth is, My Lord, That most men in these latter times, busie themselves more with other Worlds, then with this they live in, which to me seems strange, unless they could find out some Art that would carry them into those Gelestial Worlds, which I doubt will never be; nay, if they did, it would be no better then Lucian's, or the French-mans Art, with Bottles, Bladders, &c. or like the mans that would scrue himself up into the Moon: And therefore I confess, I have but little faith in such Arts, and as little in Telescopical, Microscopical, and the like inspections, and prefer rational and judicious Observations before deluding Glasses and Experi­ments; which, as I have more at large declared in this following work, so I leave it to your Graces perusal and judgment, which I know is so just, so exact, and so wise, that I may more safely rely upon it, then all others besides; and if your Grace do but approve of it, I care not if all the world condemn it; for your Graces Approbation is all that can be desired from,

My Lord,
Your Graces honest Wife, and humble Servant, M. N.

TO THE MOST FAMOUS UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDG.

Most Noble, and Eminently-Learned,

DO not judg it an Impertinency, that now again I presume to offer unto you another piece of my Philosophical Works; for when I re­flect upon the honour you have done me, I am so much sensible of it, that I am troubled I cannot make you an acknowledgment answerable to your great Civilities.

You might, if not with scorn, with silence have passed by, when one of our Sex, and what is more, one that ne­ver was versed in the sublime Arts and Sciences of litera­ture, took upon her to write, not onely of Philosophy, the highest of all humane Learning, but to offer it to so famous and celebrated a University as yours; but your Goodness [Page] and Civility being as great as your Learning, would rather conceal, then discover or laugh at those weaknesses and im­perfections which you know our Sex is liable to; nay, so far you were from this, that by your civil respects, and undeserved commendations, you were pleased to cherish rather, then quite to suppress or extinguish my weak endeavours.

For which Favour, as I found my self doubly indebted to you, so I thought it my duty to pay you my double acknowledg­ments; Thanks, you know, can never be unseasonable, when petitions may; neither can they be unpleasing, when petitions often are troublesome; and since there is no sacrifice, which God is more delighted with, then that of Thanks-giving, I live in hopes you will not refuse this repeated offer of Gra­titude, but favourably, as a due to your Merits, receive it from her, who both of your Ingenuity, Learning and Civi­lity is the greatest admirer, and shall always profess her self,

Your most Obliged and Devoted Servant.

THE PREFACE TO THE ENSUING TREATISE.

TIs probable, some will say, that my much writing is a disease; but what disease they will judg it to be, I can­not tell; I do verily believe they will take it to be a disease of the Brain, but surely they cannot call it an Apoplexical or Lethargical disease: Perhaps they will say, it is an extravagant, or at least a Fantastical disease; but I hope they will rather call it a disease of wit. But, let them give it what name they please, yet of this I am sure, that if much writing be a disease, then the best Philosophers, both Moral and [Page] Natural, as also the best Divines, Lawyers, Physiti­ans, Poets, Historians, Orators, Mathematicians, Chy­mists, and many more have been grievously sick, and Seneca, Plinius, Aristotle, Cicero, Tacitus, Plutarch, Euclid, Homer, Virgil, Ovid, St. Augustin. St. Am­brose, Scotus, Hippocrates, Galen, Paracelsus, and hundreds more, have been at deaths door with the dis­ease of writing; but to be infected with the same dis­ease, which the devoutest, wisest, wittiest, subtilest, most learned and eloquent men have been troubled withal, is no disgrace, but the greatest honour, even to the most ambitious person in the world: and next to the honour of being thus infected, it is also a great delight and pleasure to me, as being the onely Pastime which imploys my idle hours; in so much, that, were I sure no body did read my Works, yet I would not quit my pastime for all this; for although they should not delight others, yet they delight me; and if all Women that have no imployment in worldly affairs, should but spend their time as harmlesly as I do, they would not commit such faults as many are accused of.

I confess, there are many useless and superfluous Books, and perchance mine will add to the number of them; especially is it to be observed, that there have been in this latter age, as many Writers of Natural Philosophy, as in former ages there have been of Moral Philosophy; which multitude, I fear, will produce such a confusion of Truth and Falshood, as the number [Page] of Moral Writers formerly did, with their over-nice divisions of Vertues and vices, whereby they did puzle their Readers so, that they knew not how to distinguish between them. The like, I doubt, will prove amongst our Natural Philosophers, who by their extracted, or rather distracted arguments, confound both Divinity and Natural Philosophy, Sense and Reason, Nature and Art, so much as in time we shall have rather a Chaos, then a well-order'd Universe by their doctrine: Be­sides, many of their Writings are but parcels taken from the ancient; but such Writers are like those unconsci­onable men in Civil Wars, which endeavour to pull down the hereditary Mansions of Noble-men and Gentlemen, to build a Cottage of their own; for so do they pull down the learning of Ancient Authors, to render themselves famous in composing Books of their own. But though this Age does ruine Pa­laces, to make Cottages; Churches, to make Con­venticles; and Universities to make private Col­ledges; and endeavour not onely to wound, but to kill and bury the Fame of such meritorious Persons as the Ancient were, yet, I, hope God of his mercy will preserve State, Church, and Schools, from ruine and destruction; Nor do I think their weak works will be able to overcome the strong wits of the Ancient; for setting aside some few of our Moderns, all the rest are but like dead and withered leaves, in comparison to lovely and lively Plants; and as for Arts, I am confi­dent, [Page] that where there is one good Art found in these latter ages, there are two better old Arts lost, both of the AEgyptians, Grecians, Romans, and many other an­cient Nations; (when I say lost, I mean in relation to our knowledg, not in Nature; for nothing can be lost in Nature) Truly, the Art of Augury was far more beneficial then the lately invented Art of Micrography; for I cannot perceive any great advantage this Art doth bring us. Also the Ecclipse of the Sun and Moon was not found out by Telescopes, nor the motions of the Load­stone, nor the Art of the Card, nor the Art of Guns and Gun-powder, nor the Art of Printing, and the like, by Microscopes; nay, if it be true, that Te­lescopes make appear the spots in the Sun and Moon, or discover some new Stars, what benefit is that to us? Or if Microscopes do truly represent the exterior parts and superficies of some minute Creatures, what advantages it our knowledg? For unless they could dis­cover their interior, corporeal, figurative motions, and the obscure actions of Nature, or the causes which make such or such Creatures, I see no great benefit or ad­vantage they yield to man: Or if they discover how re­flected light makes loose and superficial Colours, such as no sooner percieved, but are again dissolved; what benefit is that to man? For neither Painters nor Dy­ers can inclose and mix that Atomical dust, and those reflections of light to serve them for any use. Where­fore, in my opinion, it is both time and labour lost; for [Page] the inspection of the exterior parts of Vegetables, doth not give us any knowledg how to Sow, Set, Plant, and Graft; so that a Gardener or Husbandman will gain no advantage at all by this Art: The inspection of a Bee, through a Microscope, will bring him no more Honey, nor the inspection of a grain more Corn; neither will the inspection of dusty Atomes, and reflections of light, teach Painters how to make and mix Colours, although it may perhaps be an advantage to a decayed Ladies face, by placing her self in such or such a refle­ction of Light, where the dusty Atomes may hide her wrinkles. The truth is, most of these Arts are Fal­lacies, rather then discoveries of Truth; for Sense de­ludes more then it gives a true Information, and an ex­terior inspection through an Optick glass, is so decei­ving, that it cannot be relied upon: Wherefore Re­gular Reason is the best guide to all Arts, as I shall make it appear in this following Treatise.

It may be the World will judg it a fault in me, that I oppose so many eminent and ingenious Writers, but I do it not out of a contradicting or wrangling nature, but out of an endeavour to find out truth, or at least the probability of truth, according to that proportion of sense and reason Nature has bestowed upon me; for as I have heard my Noble Lord say, that in the Art of Riding and Fencing, there is but one Truth, but ma­ny Falshoods and Fallacies: So it may be said of Natural Philophy and Divinity; for there is but one Funda­mental [Page] Truth in each, and I am as ambitious of finding out the truth of Nature, as an honourable Dueller is of gaining fame and repute; for as he will fight with none but an honourable and valiant opposite, so am I resolved to argue with none but those which have the renown of being famous and subtil Philosophers; and therefore as I have had the courage to argue hereto­fore with some famous and eminent Writers in Spe­culative Philosophy; so have I taken upon me in this present work, to make some reflections also upon some of our Modern Experimental and Dioptrical Writers. They will perhaps think my self an inconsiderable op­posite, because I am not of their Sex, and therefore strive to hit my Opinions with a side stroke, rather co­vertly, then openly and directly; but if this should chance, the impartial World, I hope, will grant me so much Justice as to consider my honesty, and their fallacy, and pass such a judgment as will declare them to be Patrons, not onely to Truth, but also to Justice and Equity; for which Heaven will grant them their reward, and time will record their noble and worthy Actions in the Register of Fame, to be kept in everlast­ing Memory.

TO THE READER.

Curteous Reader,

I Do ingeniously confess, that both for want of learning and reading Philo­sophical Authors, I have not ex­pressed my self in my Philosophical Works, especially in my Philosophi­cal and Physical Opinions, so clearly and plainly as I might have done, had I had the assistance of Art, and the practice of reading other Authors: But though my Conceptions seem not so perspicuous in the mentioned Book of Philosophical Opinions; yet my Philosophical Let­ters, and these present Observations, will, I hope, ren­der it more intelligible, which I have writ, not out of an am­bitious humour, to fill the World with useless Books, but to explain and illustrate my own Opinions; For what bene­fit would it be to me, if I should put forth a work, which by [Page] reason of its obscure and hard notious, could not be understood? especially, it is knowil, that Natural Philosophy is the hard­est of all humane learning, by reason it consists onely in Contemplation, and to make the Philosophical Conceptions of ones mind known to others, is more difffcult then to make them believe, that if A. B. be equal to C. D. then E. F. is equal to A. B. because it is equal to C. D. But as for Learning, that I am not versed in it, no body, I hope, will blame me for it, since it is sufficiently known, that our Sex is not bread up to it, as being not suffer'd to be instructed in Schools and Vniversities; I will not say, but many of our Sex may have as much wit, and be capable of Learning as well as Men; but since they want Instructions, it is not possible they should attain to it; for Learning is Artificial, but Wit is Natural. Wherefore, when I began to read the Philosophical Works of other Authors, I was so trou­bled with their hard words and expressions at first, that had they not been explained to me, and had I not found out some of them by the context and connexion of the sense, I should have been far enough to seek; for their hard words did more ob­struct, then instruct me. The truth is, if any one intends to write Philosophy, either in English, or any other lan­guage; be ought to consider the propriety of the language, as much as the Subject be writes of; or else to what pur­pose would it be to write? If you do write Philosophy in En­glish, and use all the hardest words and expressions which none but Scholars are able to understand, you had better to write it in Latine; but if you will write for those that do not [Page] understand Latin, Your reason will tell you, that you must explain those hard words, and English them in the easiest manner you can; What are words but marks of things? and what are Philosophical Terms, but to express the Conceptions of ones mind in that Science? And truly I do not think that there is any Language so poor, which cannot do that; wherefore those that fill their writings with hard words, put the horses behind the Coach, and in­stead of making hard things easie, make easie things hard, which especially in our English writers is a great fault; neither do I see any reason for it, but that they think to make themselves more famous by those that admire all what they do not understand, though it be Non-sense; but I am not of their mind, and therefore although I do under­stand some of their hard expressions now, yet I shun them as much in my writings as is possible for me to do, and all this, that they may be the better understood by all, learned as well as unlearned; by those that are professed Philoso­phers as well as by those that are none: And though I could employ some time in studying all the hardest phrases and words in other Authors, and write as learnedly perhaps as they; yet will I not deceive the World, nor trouble my Conscience by being a Mountebanck in learning, but rather prove naturally wise then artificially foolish; for at best I should but obscure my opinions, and render them more intricate instead of clearing and explaining them; but if my Readers should spie any errors slipt into my writings for want of art and learning, I hope they'l be so just as not to censure [Page] me too severely for them, but express their wisdom in pre­ferring the kernel before the shells.

It is not possible that a young Student, when first he comes to the Vniversity, should hope to be Master of Art in one Month, or one Year; and so do I likewise not per­swade my self, that my Philosophy being new, and but late­ly brought forth, will at first fight prove Master of Vn­derstanding, nay, it may be not in this age; but if God favour her, she may attain to it in after-times and if she be slighted now and buried in silence, she may perhaps rise more gloriously hereafter; for her Ground being Sense and Reason, She may meet with an age where she will be more regarded, then she is in this.

But Courteous Reader, all what I request of you at present, is, That if you have a mind to understand my Philosophical Conceptions truly, You would be pleased to read them not by parcels, here a little, and there a lit­tle, (for I have found it by my self, that when I read not a book throughly from beginning to end, I cannot well understand the Authors design, but may easily mistake his meaning; I mean such Books as treat of Philosophy, History, &c. where all parts depend upon each other,) But if you'l give an impartial judgment of my Philoso­phy, read it all, or else spare your Censures; especially do I recommend to you my Philosophical Opinions, which con­tain the Grounds and Principles of my Philosophy, but since they were published before I was versed in the read­ing of other Authors, I desire you to join my Philoso­phical [Page] Leters, and these observations to them, which will serve as Commentaries to explain what may seem obscure in the mentioned Opinions; but before all, read this follow­ing Argumental Discourse wherein are contained the Prin­ciples and grounds of Natural Philosophy, especially con­cerning the constitutive parts of Nature and their pro­perties and actions; as also be pleas'd to peruse the later discourse of the first part of this Book, which treats of Perception; for Perception being the chief and general action of Nature, has occasioned me to be more prolix in ex­plaining it, then any other subject; You'l find that I go much by the way of argumentation, and framing objecti­ons and answers; for I would fain hinder and obstruct as many objections as could be made against the grounds of my Opinions; but since it is impossible to resolve all, for as Nature and her parts and actions are infinite, so there may also endless objections be raised; I have endeavoured onely to set down such as I thought might be most mate­rial; but this I find, that there is no objection but one may find an answer to it; and as soon as I have made an answer to one objection, another offers it self again, which shews not onely that Natures actions are infinite, but that they are poised and ballanced so that they cannot run into extreams.

However I do not appland my self so much, as to think that my works can be without errors, for Nature is not a Deity, but her parts are often irregular, and how is it possible that one particular Creature can know all the ob­scure [Page] and hidden infinite varieties of Nature? if the Truth of Nature were so easily known, we had no need to take so much pains in searching after it; but Nature being Material, and consequently dividable, her parts have but divided knowledges, and none can claim a Vniver­sal infinite knowledg. Nevertheless, although I may erre in my arguments, or for want of artificial Terms; yet I believe the Ground of my Opinions is True, because it is sense and reason.

I found after the perusal of this present book, that se­veral places therein might have been more perspicuously delivered, and better cleared; but since it is impossible that all things can be so exact, that they should not be subject to faults and imperfections; for as the greatest beauties are not without moles, so the best Books are seldom without Errors; I intreat the ingenuous Reader to interpret them to the best sense; for they are not so material, but that either by the context or connexion of the whole discourse, or by a comparing with other places, the true meaning thereof may easily be understood; and to this end I have set down this following explanation of such places, as in the perusal I have observed, whereby the rest may al­so easily be mended.

When I say, that Discourse shall sooner find out Na­turest I. c. 2., 6.Corporeal figurative Motions, then Art shall inform the Senses. By Discourse, I do not mean speech, but an Arguing of the mind, or a Rational inquiry into the Causes of Natural effects; for Discourse is as much as [Page] Reasoning with our selves, which may very well be done without Speech or Language, as being onely an effect or action of Reason.

When I say, That Art may make Pewter, Brass, &c. C. 3. pag. 8. I do not mean as if these Figures were Artificial, and not Natural; but my meaning is, That if Art imitates Nature in producing of Artificial Figures, they are most commonly such as are of mixt Natures, which I call Hermaphroditical.

When I say, That Respiration is a Reception andC. 4. pag. 15;Emission of parts through the pores or passages pro­per to each particular figure, so that when some parts issue, others enter; I do not mean at one and the same time, or always through the same passages; for, as there is variety of Natural Creatures and Figures, and of their perceptions; so of the manner of their perceptions, and of their passages and pores; all which no particular Crea­ture is able exactly to know or determine: And there­fore when I add in the following Chapter, That Nature has more ways of composing and dividing of parts, then by the way of drawing in, and sending forth by pores; I mean, that not all parts of Nature have the like Respirations: The truth is, it is enough to know in general, That there is Respiration in all parts of Na­ture, as a general or universal action; and that this Re­spiration is nothing else but a composition and division of Parts; but how particular Respirations are performed, none but Infinite Nature is capable to know.

[Page] When I say, That there is a difference between Re­spirationC. 5. Pag. 16.and Perception; and that Perception is an action of figuring or patterning; but Respiration an a­ction of Reception and Emission of Parts: First, I do not mean, that all Percaption is made by patterning or imitation; but I speak onely of the Perception of the exterior senses in Animals, at least in man, which I observe to be made by patterning or imitation; for as no Creature can know the infinite perceptions in Nature, so he cannot describe what they are, or how they are made Next, I do not mean, that Respiration is not a Percep­tive action; for if Perception be a general and universal action in Nature, as well as Respiration, both depend­ing upon the composition and division of parts, it is im­possible but that all actions of Nature must be perceptive, by reason perception is an exterior knowledg of forreign parts and actions; and there can be no commerce or in­tercourse, nor no variety of figures and actions; no pro­ductions, dissolutions, changes and the like, without Perception; for how shall Parts work and act, with­out having some knowledg or perception of each other? Besides, wheresoever is self-motion, there must of neces­sity be also Perception; for self-motion is the cause of all exterior Perception. But my meaning is, That the Ani­mal, at least Humane respiration, which is a receiveing of forreign parts, and discharging or venting of its own in an animal or humane Figure or Creature, is not the action of Animal Perception, properly so call'd; that is, [Page] the perception of its exterior senses, as Seeing, Hearing, Tasting, Touching, Smelling; which action of Percep­tion is properly made by way of patterning and imitation, by the innate, figurative motions of those Animal Crea­tures, and not by receiving either the figures of the ex­terior objects into the sensitive Organs, or by sending forth some invisible rayes from the Organ to the Object; nor by pressure and reaction. Nevertheless, as I said, every action of Nature is a Knowing and Perceptive action; and so is Respiration, which of necessity presupposes a knowledg of exterior parts, especially those that are con­cern'd in the same action, and can no ways be perform'd without perception of each other.

When I say, That if all mens Opinions and Fan­ciesChap. 15. pag. 44.were Rational, there would not be such variety in Nature as we perceive there is; by Rational I mean Regular, according to the vulgar way of expres­sion, by which a Rational Opinion is call'd, That which is grounded upon regular sense and reason; and thus Rational is opposed to Irregular: Nevertheless, Irregular Fancies and Opinions are made by the rational parts of matter, as well as those that are regular; and therefore in a Philosophi­cal and strict sense, one may call Irregular Opinions as well Rational, as those that are Regular; but according to the vulgar way of expression, as I said, it is sooner understood of Regular, then of Irregular Opinions, Fan­cies or Conceptions.

[Page] When I say, that None of Natures parts can beC. 16. pa. 47.call'd Inanimate, or Soul-less; I do not mean the con­stitutive parts of Nature, which are, as it were, the Ingredients whereof Nature consists, and is made up; whereof there is an inanimate part or degree of matter, as well as animate; but I mean the parts or effects of this composed body of Nature, of which I say, that none can be call'd inanimate; for though some Philosophers think that nothing is animate, or has life in Nature, but Ani­mals and Vegetables; yet it is probable, that since Na­ture consists of a commixture of animate and inanimate mat­ter, and is self-moving, there can be no part or particle of this composed body of Nature, were it an Atome, that may be call'd Inaminate, by reason there is none that has not its share of animate, as well as inanimate matter, and the commixture of these degrees being so close, it is impossible one should be without the other.

When enumerating the requisites of the Perception ofCap. 20. Pag. 63. Sight in Animals, I say, that if one of them be want­ing, there is either no perception at all, or it is an imperfect perception; I mean, there is no Animal per­ception of seeing, or else an irregular perception.

When I say, that as the sensitive perception knowsCap. 21. Pag. 76.some of the other parts of Nature by their effects; so the rational perceives some effects of the Omnipotent Power of God; My meaning is not, as if the sensitive part of matter hath no knowledg at all of God; for since all parts of Nature, even the inanimate, have an innate [Page] and fixt self-knowledg, it is probable that they may al­so have an interior self-knowledg of the existency of the Eternal and Omnipotent God, as the Author of Nature: But because the rational part is the subtilest, purest, fi­nest and highest degree of matter; it is most conformable to truth, that it has also the highest and greatest know­ledg of God, as far as a natural part can have; for God being Immaterial, it cannot properly be said, that sense can have a perception of him, by reason he is not subject to the sensitive perception of any Creature, or part of Nature; and therefore all the knowledg which natural Creatures can have of God, must be inherent in every part of Nature; and the perceptions which we have of the Effects of Nature, may lead us to some conceptions of that Supernatural, Infinite, and Incomprehensible Dei­ty, not what it is in its Essence or Nature, but that it is existent, and that Nature has a dependance upon it, as an Eternal Servant has upon an Eternal Master.

But some might say, How is it possible that a Cor­poreal finite part, can have a conception of an Incorpo­real, infinite Being; by reason that which comprehends, must needs be bigger then that which is comprehended? Besides, no part of Nature can conceive beyond it self, that is, beyond what is Natural or Material; and this proves, that at least the rational part, or the mind, must be immaterial to conceive a Deity? To which I answer, That no part of Nature can or does conceive the Essence of God, or what God is in himself; but it conceives [Page] onely, that there is such a Divine Being which is Su­pernatural: And therefore it cannot be said, that a na­tural Figure can comprehend God; for it is not the comprehending of the Substance of God, or its pattern­ing out, (since God having no Body, is without all Fi­gure) that makes the knowledg of God; but I do believe, that the knowledg of the existency of God, as I menti­oned before, is innate, and inherent in Nature, and all her parts, as much as self-knowledg is.

Speaking of the difference between Oil and other li­quors;Cap. 24. Pag. 83. for the better understanding of that place, I thought fit to insert this Note: Flame is fluid, but not liquid, nor wet: Oil is fluid and liquid, but not wet; but Wa­ter is both fluid, liquid and wet. Oil will turn into flame, and encrease it; but Water is so quite opposite to flame, that if a sufficient quantity be poured upon it, it will totally extinguish it.

When I say, that Sense and Reason shall be theCap. 25. Pag. 93.Ground of my Philosophy, and not particular natu­ral effects; My meaning is, that I do not intend to make particular Creatures or Figures, the Principles of all the infinite effects of Nature, as some other Philosophers do; for there is no such thing as a Prime or principal Figure of Nature, all being but effects of one Cause. But my Ground is Sense and Reason, that is, I make self-mo­ving matter, which is sensitive and rational, the onely cause and principle of all natural effects.

[Page] When 'tis said, That Ice, Snow, Hail, &c. returnCap. 27. Pag. 100.into their former Figure of Water, whensoever they dissolve; I mean, when they dissolve their exterior Fi­gures, that is, change their actions.

When I say, That the Exterior Object is the A­gent,Cap. 29. Pag. 126.and the Sentient Body the Patient; I do not mean that the Object does chiefly work upon the Senti­ent, or is the immediate cause of the Perception in the Sentient body, and that the Sentient suffers the Agent to act upon it; but I retain onely those words, because they are used in Schools; But as for their actions, I am quite of a contrary Opinion, to wit, That the sentient body is the principal Agent, and the external body the Patient; for the motions of the sentient in the act of per­ception, do figure out or imitate the motions of the ob­ject, so that the object is but as a Copy that is figured out, or imitated by the sentient, which is the chiefly A­gent in all transforming and perceptive actions that are made by way of patterning or imitation.

When I say, That one finite part can undergo in­finiteCap. 31. Pag. 136.changes and alterations; I do not mean one sin­gle part, whereof there is no such thing in nature; but I mean, one part may be infinitely divided and composed with other parts; for as there are infinite changes, compositions and divisions in Nature, so they must be of parts; there being no variety but of parts; and though parts be finite, yet the changes may be infinite; for the finiteness of parts is but concerning the bulk or quantity [Page] of their figures; and they are call'd finite, by reason they have limited and circumscribed figures; nevertheless, as for duration, their parts being the same with the bo­dy of Nature, are as eternal, and infinite as Nature her self, and thus are subject to infinite and eternal changes.

VVhen I say, A World of Gold is as active in­teriously,Ibid. P. 140.as a world of Air is exteriously; I mean, it is as much subject to changes and alterations as Air; for Gold though its motions are not perceptible by our exte­rior senses, yet it has no less motion then the activest bo­dy of Nature; onely its motions are of another kind then the motions of Air, or of some other bodies; for Reten­tive motions are as much motions, as dispersing or some other sorts of motions, although not so visible to our per­ception as these; and therefore we cannot say that Gold is more at rest than other Creatures of Nature; for there is no such thing as Rest in Nature; although there be degrees of Motion.

VVhen I say, That the parts of Nature do notCap. 31. Pag. 138,drive or press upon each other, but that all natural actions are free and easie, and not constrained; My meaning is not, as if there was no pressing or driving of parts at all in Nature, but onely that they are not the universal or principal actions of Natures body, as it is the opinion of some Philosophers, who think there is no other motion in nature, but by pressure of parts upon parts: Nevertheless, there is pressure and reaction in Nature, because there are infinite sorts of motions.

[Page] Also when I say in the same place, That Natures a­ctions are voluntary; I do not mean, that all actions are made by rote, and none by imitation; but by volun­tary actions I understand self-actions; that is, such actions whose principle of motion is within themselves, and doth not proceed from such an exterior Agent, as doth the moti­on of the inanimate part of matter, which having no mo­tion of it self, is moved by the animate parts, yet so, that it receives no motion from them, but moves by the motion of the animate parts, and not by an infused mo­tion into them; for the animate parts in carrying the inani­mate along with them, lose nothing of their own motion, nor impart no motion to the inanimate; no more than a man who carries a stick in his hand, imparts motion to the stick, and loses so much as he imparts; but they bear the inanimate parts along with them, by vertue of their own self-motion, and remain self-moving parts, as well as the inanimate remain without motion.

Again, when I make a distinguishment between vo­luntaryCap. 37. Pag. 212. actions, and exterior perceptions; my meaning is not, as if voluntary actions were not made by perceptive parts; for whatsoever is self-moving and active, is per­ceptive; and therefore since the voluntary actions of Sense and Reason are made by self-moving parts, they must of necessity be perceptive actions; but I speak of Perceptions properly so call'd, which are occasioned by Forreign parts; and to those I oppose voluntary actions, which are not occasioned, but made by rote; as for [Page] example, the perception of sight in Animals, when out­ward Objects present themselves to the Optick sense to be perceived, the perception of the Sentient is an occasion­ed perception; but whensoever, either in dreams, or in distempers, the sensitive motions of the same Organ, make such or such figures, without any presentation of exterior objects, then that action cannot properly be call'd an ex­terior perception; but it is a voluntary action of the sensi­tive motions in the organ of sight, not made after an out­ward pattern, but by rote, and of their own accord.

When I say, That Ignorance is caused by divisi­on,Cap. 9. p. 33.and knowledg by composition of parts; I do not mean an interior, innate self-knowledg, which is, and remains in every part and particle of Nature, both in composition and division; for wheresoever is matter, there is life and self-knowledg; nor can a part lose self­knowledg, any more then it can lose life, although it may change from having such or such a particular life and know­ledg; for to change and lose, are different things; but I mean an exterior, perceptive knowledg of forreign parts, caused by self-motion, of which I say, that as a union or combination of parts, makes knowledg, so a division or separation of parts, makes Ignorance.

When I say, There's difference of Sense and ReasonCap. 15. p. 49 in the parts of one composed Figure; I mean not, as if there were different degrees of sense, and different de­grees of Reason in their own substance or matter; for sense is but sense, and reason is but reason; but my meaning is, [Page] That there are different, sensitive and rational motions, which move differently in the different parts of one compo­sed Creature.

These are (Courteous Reader) the scruples which I thought might puzle your understanding in this present Work, which I have cleared in the best manner I could; and if you should meet with any other of the like nature, my request is, You would be pleased to consider well the Grounds of my Philosophy; and as I desired of you before, read all before you pass your Judgments and Censures; for then, I hope, you'l find but few obstructions, since one place will give you an explanation of the other. In doing thus, you'l neither wrong your self, nor injure the Authoress, who should be much satisfied, if she could be­nesit your knowledg in the least; if not, she has done her endeavour, and takes as much pleasure and delight in writing and divulging the Conceptions of her mind, as perhaps some malicious persons will do in censuring them to the worst.

AN Argumental Discourse

Concerning some Principal Subjects in Natural Phi­losophy, necessary for the better understanding, not onely of this, but all other Philosophical Works, hi­therto written by the AUTHOEESSE.

WHen I was setting forth this Book of Experimental Observations, a Dis­pute chanced to arise between the rational Parts of my Mind con­cerning some chief Points and Principles in Natural Philoso­phy; for some New Thoughts endeavouring to op­pose and call in question the Truth of my former Con­ceptions, caused a war in my mind, which in time grew to that height, that they were hardly able to compose the differences between themselves, but were in a man­ner necessitated to refer them to the Arbitration of the impartial Reader, desiring the assistance of his judg­ment to reconcile their Controversies, and, if pos­sible, [Page] to reduce them to a setled peace and agree­ment.

The first difference did arise about the question, How it came, that Matter was of several degrees, as Ani­mate and Inanimate, Sensitive and Rational? for my latter thoughts would not believe that there was any such difference of degrees of Matter: To which my former conceptions answered, That Nature, being Eternal and Infinite, it could not be known how she came to be such, no more then a reason could be given how God came to be: for Nature, said they, is the Infinite Servant of God, and her origine cannot be described by any finite or particular Creature; for what is infinite, has neither beginning nor end; but that Natural Matter consisted of so many degrees as mentioned, was evidently perceived by her effects or actions; by which it appeared first, that Nature was a self-moving body, and that all her parts and Creatures were so too: Next, That there was not onely an animate or self-moving and active, but also an inani­mate, that is, a dull and passive degree of Matter; for if there were no animate degree, there would be no motion, and so no action nor variety of figures; and if no inanimate, there would be no degrees of natural fi­gures and actions, but all actions would be done in a mo­ment, and the figures would all be so pure, fine and sub­til, as not to be subject to any grosser perception such as our humane, or other the like perceptions are. This Ina­nimate [Page] part of Matter, said they, had no self-motion, but was carried along in all the actions of the animate degree, and so was not moving, but moved; which Animate part of Matter being again of two de­grees, viz. Sensitive and Rational, the Rational be­ing so pure, fine and subtil, that it gave onely directi­ons to the sensitive, and made figures in its own de­gree, left the working with and upon the Inani­mate part, to the Sensitive degree of Matter, whose Of­fice was to execute both the rational parts design, and to work those various figures that are perceived in Na­ture; and those three degrees were so inseparably com­mixt in the body of Nature, that none could be with­out the other in any part or Creature of Nature, could it be divided to an Atome; for as in the Exstruction of a house there is first required an Architect or Surveigh­er, who orders and designs the building, and puts the Labourers to work; next the Labourers or Work­men themselves, and lastly the Materials of which the House is built: so the Rational part, said they, in the framing of Natural Effects, is, as it were, the Sur­veigher or Architect; the Sensitive, the labouring or working part, and the Inanimate, the materials, and all these degrees are necessarily required in every com­posed action of Nature.

To this, my latter thoughts excepted, that in pro­bability of sense and reason, there was no necessity of introducing an inanimate degree of Matter; for all those [Page] parts which we call gross, said they, are no more but a composition of self-moving parts, whereof some are denser, and some rarer then others; and we may ob­serve, that the denser parts are as active, as the rarest; for example, Earth is as active as Air or Light, and the parts of the Body are as active, as the parts of the Soul or Mind, being all self-moving, as it is percei­veable by their several, various compositions, divisions, productions and alterations; nay, we do see, that the Earth is more active in the several productions and alterations of her particulars, then what we name Coe­lestial Lights, which observation is a firm argument to prove, that all Matter is animate or self-moving, one­ly there are degrees of motion, that some parts move flower, and some quicker.

Hereupon my former Thoughts answered, that the difference consisted not onely in the grossness, but in the dulness of the Inanimate parts; and that, since the sen­sitive animate parts were labouring on, and with the inanimate, if these had self-motion, and that-their mo­tion was flower then that of the animate parts, they would obstruct, cross and oppose each other in all their actions, for the one would be too slow, and the other too quick.

The latter Thoughts replied, that this slowness and quickness of motion would cause no obstruction at all; for, said they, a man that rides on a Horse is carried away by the Horses motion, and has nevertheless also [Page] his own motions himself; neither does the Horse and Man transfer or exchange motion into each other, nor do they hinder or obstruct one another.

The former Thoughts answer'd, it was True, that Motion could not be transferred from one body into another without Matter or substance; and that several self-moving parts might be joined, and each act a part without the least hinderance to one another; for not all the parts of one composed Creature (for example Man) were bound to one and the same action; and this was an evident proof that all Creatures were composed of parts, by reason of their different actions; nay, not onely of parts, but of self-moving parts: also they confessed, that there were degrees of motion, as quick­ness and slowness, and that the slowest motion was as much motion as the quickest. But yet, said they, this does not prove, that Nature consists not of Inanimate Matter as well as of Animate; for it is one thing to speak of the parts of the composed and mixed body of Nature, and another thing to speak of the constitutive parts of Nature, which are, as it were, her ingredients of which Nature is made up as one intire self-mo­ving body; for sense and reason does plainly perceive, that some parts are more dull, and some more lively, subtil and active; the Rational parts are more agil, a­ctive, pure and subtil then the sensitive; but the Inani­mate have no activity, subtilty and agility at all, by reason they want self-motion; nor no perception, for [Page] self-motion is the cause of all perception; and this Tri­umvirate of the degrees of Matter, said they, is so neces­sary to ballance and poise Natures actions, that other­wise the creatures which Nature produces, would all be produced alike, and in an instant; for example, a Child in the Womb would as suddenly be framed, as it is figured in the mind; and a man would be as sud­denly dissolved as a thought: But sense and reason per­ceives that it is otherwise; to wit, that such figures as are made of the grosser parts of Matter, are made by de­grees, and not in an instant of time, which does mani­festly evince, that there is and must of necessity be such a degree of Matter in Nature as we call Inanimate; for surely although the parts of Nature are infinite, and have infinite actions, yet they cannot run into ex­treams, but are ballanced by their opposites, so that all parts cannot be alike rare or dense, hard or soft, dilating or contracting, &c. but some are dense, some rare, some hard, some soft, fome dilative, some con­tractive, &c. by which the actions of Nature are kept in an equal ballance from running into extreams. But put the case, said they, it were so, that Natures body consisted altogether of Animate Matter, or corporeal self-motion, without an intermixture of the inanimate parts, we are confident that there would be framed as many objections against that opinion as there are now against the inanimate degree of Matter; for disputes are endless, and the more answers you receive, the more [Page] objections you will find; and the more objections you make, the more answers you will receive; and even shews, that Nature is ballanced by opposites: for, put the case, the Inanimate parts of Matter were self-mo­ving; then first there would be no such difference be­tween the rational and sensitive parts as now there is; but every part, being self-moving, would act of, and in it self, that is, in its own substance as now the rational part of Matter does: Next, if the inanimate part was of a slower motion then the rational and sensitive, they would obstruct each other in their actions, for one would be too quick, and the other too slow; neither would the quicker motion alter the nature of the slower, or the slower retard the quicker; for the nature of each must remain as it is; or else it would be thus, then the animate part might become inanimate, and the rational the sensitive, &c. which is impossible, and against all sense and reason.

At this declaration of my former Thoughts, the lat­ter appear'd somewhat better satisfied, and had almost yielded to them, but that they had yet some scruples left, which hindered them from giving a full assent to my former rational conceptions. First they asked, how it was possible, that that part of Matter which had no innate self-motion, could be moved? for, said they, if it be moved, it must either be moved by its own mo­tion, or by the motion of the animate part of Matter: by its own motion it cannot move, because it has none; [Page] but if it be moved by the motion of the animate, then the animate must of necessity transfer motion into it: that so, being not able to move by an innate motion, it might move by a communicated motion.

The former Thoughts answered, that they had re­solved this question heretofore by the example of a Horse and a Man, where the Man was moved and carried along by the Horse, without any Communica­tion or Translation of motion from the Horse into the Man; also a Stick, said they, carried in a Man's hand, goes along with the man, without receiving any motion from his hand.

My latter Thoughts replied, That a Man and a Stick were parts or Creatures of Nature, which consist of a commixture of Animate or self-moving Matter, and that they did move by their own motions, even at the time when they were carried along by other parts; but with the Inanimate part of Matter it was not so; for it having no self-motion, could no ways move.

You say well, answered my former Thoughts, that all the parts of Nature, whensoever they move, move by their own motions; which proves, that no parti­cular Creature or effect of composed Nature, can act upon another, but that one can onely occasion another to move thus or thus; as in the mentioned example, the Horse does not move the man, but occasions him onely to move after such or such a manner; also the hand does not move the Stick, but is onely an occasion that [Page] the Stick moves thus, for the Stick moves by its own motion.

But as we told you before, this is to be understood of the parts of the composed body of Nature, which as they are Natures Creatures and Effects, so they con­sist also of a commixture of the forementioned degrees of animate and inanimate Matter; but our discourse is now of those parts which do compose the body of Na­ture, and make it what it is: And as of the former parts none can be said moved, but all are moving, as ha­ving self-motion within them; so the inanimate part of Matter considered as it is an ingredient of Nature, is no ways moving, but always moved: The former parts, being effects of the body of Nature, for distinctions sake may be called Effective parts; but these, that is; the Animate and Inanimate, may be called constitutive parts of Nature: Those follow the composition of Nature, but these are the Essential parts, which consti­tute the body of Nature; whereof the Animate, by reason of their self-motion, are always active and per­ceptive; but the Inanimate is neither active nor percep­tive, but dull and passive; and you may plainly per­ceive it, added my former thoughts, by the alledged example; for as the Stick has no animal motion, and yet is carried along by and with the animal wheresoever it goes; so the Inanimate Matter, although it has no motion at all, yet it goes along with the animate parts wheresoever they'l have it; the onely difference is this, [Page] as we told you before, that the Stick being composed of animate as well as inanimate Matter, cannot proper­ly be said moved, but occasioned to such a motion by the animal that carries it, when as the inanimate part cannot be said occasioned, but moved.

My later Thoughts replied, That the alledged ex­ample of the carried Stick, could give them no full sa­tisfaction as yet; for, said they, put the case the Stick had its own motion, yet it has not a visible, exterior, local, progressive motion, such as Animals have, and there­fore it must needs receive that motion from the animal that carries it; for nothing can be occasioned to that which it has not in it self.

To which the former answered first, that although animals had a visible exterior progressive motion, yet not all progressive motion was an animal motion: Next, they said, that some Creatures did often occasion o­thers to alter their motions from an ordinary, to an ex­traordinary effect; and if it be no wonder, said they, that Cheese, Roots, Fruits, &c. produce Worms, why should it be a wonder for an Animal to occasion a visible progressive motion in a vegetable or mineral, or any other sort of Creature? For each natural action, said they, is local, were it no more then the stirring of a hairs breadth, nay, of an Atome; and all compo­sition and division, contraction, dilation, nay, even retention, are local motions; for there is no thing in so just a measure, but it will vary more or less; nay, if it [Page] did not to our perception, yet we cannot from thence infer that it does not at all; for our perception is too weak and gross to perceive all the subtil actions of Na­ture; and if so, then certainly Animals are not the onely Creatures that have local motion, but there is lo­cal motion in all parts of Nature.

Then my later Thoughts asked, that if every part of Nature moved by its own inherent self-motion, and that there was no part of the composed body of Na­ture which was not self-moving, how it came, that Children could not go so soon as born? also, if the self­moving part of Matter was of two degrees, sensitive and rational, how it came that Children could not speak be­fore they are taught? and if it was perceptive, how it came that Children did not understand so soon as born?

To which the former answered, That although there was no part of Matter that was figureless, yet those fi­gures that were composed by the several parts of Mat­ter, such as are named natural Creatures, were com­posed by degrees, and some compositions were sooner perfected then others, and some sorts of such figures or Creatures were not so soon produced or strengthened as others; for example, most of four legg'd Creatures, said they, can go, run and skip about so soon as they are parted from the Dam, that is, so soon as they are born; also they can suck, understand, and know their Dam's, when as a Bird can neither feed it self, nor fly so soon as it is hatched, but requires some time before it [Page] can hop on its leggs, and be able to fly; but a Butter­fly can fly so soon as it comes out of the shell; by which we may perceive, that all figures are not alike, either in their composing, perfecting or dissolving, no more then they are alike in their shapes, forms, understand­ing, &c. for if they were, then little Puppies and Kit­lings would see, so soon as born, as many other Crea­tures do, when as now they require nine days after their birth before they can see; and as for speech, al­though it be most proper to the shape of Man, yet he must first know or learn a language before he can speak it; and although when the parts of his mind, like the parts of his body, are brought to maturity, that is, to such a regular degree of perfection as belongs to his figure, he may make a language of his own; yet it requires time, and cannot be done in an instant: The truth is, although speech be natural to man, yet lan­guage must be learned; and as there are several self­active parts, so there are several Languages; and by reason the actions of some parts can be imitated by o­ther parts, it causes that we name learning not onely in Speech, but in many other things.

Concerning the question why Children do not un­derstand so soon as born: They answered, that as the sensitive parts of Nature did compose the bulk of Crea­tures, that is, such as were usually named bodies; and as some Creatures bodies were not finished or perfect­ed so soon as others, so the self-moving parts, which [Page] by conjunction and agreement composed that which is named the mind of Man, did not bring it to the per­fection of an Animal understanding so soon as some Beasts are brought to their understanding, that is, to such an understanding as was proper to their figure. But this is to be noted, said they, that although Nature is in a perpetual motion, yet her actions have degrees, as well as her parts, which is the reason, that all her productions are done in that which is vulgarly named Time; that is, they are not executed at once, or by one act: In short, as a House is not finished, until it be throughly built, nor can be thorowly furnished until it be throughly finished; so is the strength and under­standing of Man, and all other Creatures; and as per­ception requires Objects, so learning requires practice; for though Nature is self-knowing, self-moving, and so perceptive; yet her self-knowing, self-moving, and perceptive actions, are not all alike, but differ variously; neither doth she perform all actions at once, other­wise all her Creatures would be alike in their shapes, forms, figures, knowledges, perceptions, producti­ons, dissolutions, &c. which is contradicted by expe­rience.

After this my later Thoughts asked, how it came that the Inanimate part of Matter had more degrees then the Animate?

The former answered, That, as the Animate part had but two degrees, to wit, the sensitive and rational, so [Page] the Inanimate was but grosser and purer; and as for density, rarity, softness, hardness, &c. they were no­thing but various compositions and divisions of parts, or particular effects; nor was it density or hardness that made grossness; and thinness or rarity of parts that made fineness and purity; for Gold is more dense then dross, and yet is more pure and fine; but this is most probable, said they, that the rarest compositions are most suddenly altered; nor can the grossness and fineness of the parts of Nature be without Animate and Inanimate Matter; for the dulness of one degree poises the acti­vity of the other; and the grossness of one, the purity of the other; all which keeps Nature from extreams.

But replied my later Thonght, You say that there are infinite degrees of hardness, thickness, thinness, den­sity, rarity, &c.

Truly, answered the former, if you'l call them de­grees, you may; for so there may be infinite degrees of Magnitude, as bigger and bigger, but these degrees are nothing else but the effects of self-moving Matter, made by a composition of parts, and cannot be attri­buted to one single part, there being no such thing in Nature; b they belong to the infinite parts of Nature, joined in one body; and as for Matter it self, there are no more degrees, but animate and inanimate; that is, a self-moving, active and perceptive, and a dull, passive, and moved degree.

[Page] My later Thoughts asked, since Natures parts were so closely joined in one body, how it was possible that there could be finite, and not single parts?

The former answered, That finite and single parts were not all one and the same; for single parts, said they, are such as can subsist by themselves; neither can they properly be called parts, but are rather finite wholes; for it is a meer contradiction to say single parts, they having no reference to each other, and consequently not to the body of Nature; But what we call finite Parts, are nothing else but several corporeal figurative moti­ons, which make all the difference that is between the figures or parts of Nature, both in their kinds, sorts and particulars: And thus finite and particular parts are all one, called thus, by reason they have limited and circumscribed figures, by which they are discerned from each other, but not single figures, for they are all join­ed in one body, and are parts of one infinite whole, which is Nature; and these figures being all one and the same with their parts of Matter, change according as their parts change, that is, by composition and di­vision; for were Nature an Atome, and material, that Atome would have the properties of a body, that is, be dividable and composable, and so be subject to infinite changes, although it were not infinite in bulk.

My later Thoughts replied, That if a finite body could have infinite compositions and divisions, then Nature [Page] need not to be infinite in bulk or quantity; besides, said they, it is against sense and reason that a finite should have infinite effects.

The former answered first, As for the infiniteness of Nature, it was certain that Nature consisted of infi­nite parts; which if so, she must needs also be of an infinite bulk or quantity; for where soever is an infinite number of parts or figures, there must also be an infi­nite whole, since a whole and its parts differ not really, but onely in the manner of our conception; for when we conceive the parts of Nature as composed in one bo­dy, and inseparable from it, the composition of them is called a whole; but when we conceive their diffe­rent figures, actions and changes, and that they are dividable from each other, or amongst themselves, we call them parts; for by this one part is discerned from the other part; as for example, a Mineral from a Ve­getable, a Vegetable from an Element, an Element from an Animal, &c. and one part is not another part; but yet these parts are, and remain still parts of infinite Nature, and cannot be divided into single parts, sepa­rated from the body of Nature, although they may be divided amongst themselves infinite ways by the self­moving power of Nature. In short, said they, a whole is nothing but a composition of parts, and parts are no­thing but a division of the whole.

Next, as for the infinite compositions and divisions of a finite whole, said they, it is not probable that a [Page] finite can have infinite effects, or can be actually divi­ded into infinite parts; but yet a body cannot but have the proprieties of a body as long as it lasts; and there­fore if a finite body should last eternally, it would eter­nally retain the effects, or rather proprieties of a body, that is, to be dividable and composable; and if it have self-motion, and was actually divided and composed, then those compositions and divisions of its parts would be eternal too; but what is eternal is infinite, and therefore in this sense one cannot say amiss, but that there might be eternal compositions and divisions of the parts of a finite whole; for wheresoever is self-motion there is no rest: But, mistake us not, for we do not mean divisions or compositions into single or infinite parts, [...] perpetual and eternal change and self-motion of the parts of that finite body or whole amongst themselves.

But because we speak now of the parts of Infinite Nature, which are Infinite in number, though finite, or rather distinguished by their figures; It is certain, said they, that there being a perpetual and eternal self­motion in all parts of Nature, and their number being infinite, they must of necessity be subject to infinite changes, compositions, and divisions; not onely as for their duration, or eternal self-motion, but as for the number of their parts; for parts cannot remove but from and to parts; and as soon as they are removed from such parts, they join to other parts, which is no­thing else but a composition and division of parts; [Page] and this composition and division of the Infinite parts of Nature, hinders that there are no actual divisions or compositions of a finite part, because the one counter­balances the other; for if by finite you understand a single part, there can be no such thing in Nature, since what we call the finiteness of parts, is nothing else but the difference and change of their figures, caused by self-motion; and therefore when we say Infinite Nature consists of an infinite number of finite parts, we mean of such parts as may be distinguished or discerned from each other by their several figures; which figures are not constant, but change perpetually in the body of Nature; so that there can be no constant figure al­lowed to no part, although some do last longer then others.

Then my later Thoughts desired to know, whether there were not degrees of Motion, as well as there are of Matter?

The former answered, That without question there were degrees of motion; for the rational parts were more agil, quick and subtil in their corporeal actions then the sensitive, by reason they were of a purer and finer degree of Matter, and free from labouring on the inanimate parts: but withal they told them, that the several different and opposite actions of Nature hin­dred each other from running into extreams: And as for the degrees of Matter, there could not possibly be more then Animate and Inanimate, neither could any [Page] degree go beyond Matter, so as to become immaterial. The truth is, said they, to balance the actions of Na­ture, it cannot be otherwise, but there must be a Pas­sive degree of Matter, opposite to the active; which passive part is that we call Inanimate; for though they are so closely intermixt in the body of Nature, that they cannot be separated from each other, but by the power of God; nevertheless, sense and reason may perceive that they are distinct degrees, by their distinct and different actions, and may distinguish them so far, that one part is not another part, and that the actions of one degree are not the actions of the other. Where­fore as several self-moving parts may be joined in one composed body, and may either act differently with­out hinderance and obstruction to each other, or may act jointly and agreeably to one effect; so may the sen­sitive parts carry or bear along with them the inanimate parts, without either transferring and communicating motion to them, or without any co-operation or self­action of the inanimate parts; and as for Matter, as there can be no fewer degrees then Animate and Ina­nimate, sensitive and rational; so neither can there be more; for as we mentioned heretofore, were there no­thing but animate or self-moving Matter in Nature, the parts of Nature would be too active and quick in their several productions, alterations and dissolutions, and all things would be as soon made, as thoughts. Again, were there no Inanimate degree of Matter, [Page] the sensitive corporeal motions would retain the fi­gures or patterns of exterior objects, as the rational do; which yet we perceive otherwise; for so soon as the object is removed, the sensitive perception is altered; and though the sensitive parts can work by rote, as in dreams and some distempers, yet their voluntary actions are not so exact, as their Exterior perceptive actions, nor altogether and always so regular as the ra­tional; and the reason is, that they are bound to bear the inanimate parts along with them in all their actions. Also were there no degree of Inanimate Matter, Na­tures actions would run into extreams; but because all her actions are ballanced by opposites, they hinder both extreams in Nature, and produce all that Har­monious variety that is found in Natures parts.

But said my later Thoughts, wheresoever is such an opposition and crossing of actions, there can be no har­mony, concord or agreement, and consequently no orderly productions, dissolutions, changes and alte­rations, as in Nature we perceive there be.

The former answered, That though the actions of Nature were different and opposite to each other, yet they did cause no disturbance in Nature, but they were ruled and governed by Natures wisdom; for Nature being peaceable in her self, would not suffer her actions to disturb her Government; wherefore al­though particulars were crossing and opposing each o­ther, yet she did govern them with such wisdom and [Page] moderation, that they were necessitated to obey her and move according as she would have them; but sometimes they would prove extravagant and refracto­ry, and hence came that we call Irregularities. The truth is, said they, contrary and opposite actions are not always at war; for example, two men may meet each other contrary ways, and one may not onely stop the other from going forward, but even draw him back again the same way he came; and this may be done with love and kindness, and with his good will, and not vi­olently by power and force: The like may be in some actions of Nature. Nevertheless, we do not deny, but there is many times force and power used between particular parts of Nature, so that some do over-power others, but this causes no disturbance in Nature; for if we look upon a well-ordered Government, we find that the particulars are often at strife and difference with each other, when as yet the Government is as orderly and peaceable as can be.

My later thoughts replied, That although the several and contrary actions in Nature did not disturb her Go­vernment, yet they moving severally in one compo­sed figure at one and the same time, proved that Mo­tion, Figure and Body could not be one and the same thing.

The former answered, That they had sufficiently de­clared heretofore that Matter was either moving, or mo­ved: viz. That the Animate part was self-moving, and the [Page] Inanimate moved, or carried along with, and by the Animate; and these degrees or parts of Matter were so closely intermixt in the body of Nature, that they could not be separated from each other, but did consti­tute but one body, not onely in general, but also in every particular; so that not the least part (if least could be) nay, not that which some call an Atome, was without this commixture; for wheresoever was Inanimate, there was also Animate Matter; which Animate Matter was nothing else but corporeal self-motion, and if any dif­ference could be apprehended, it was, said they, be­tween these two degrees, to wit, the Animate and In­animate part of Matter, and not between the animate part and self-motion, which was but one thing, and could not so much as be conceived differently; and since this Animate Matter, or corporeal self-motion is thorowly intermixt with the Inanimate parts, they are but as one body (like as soul and body make but one man) or else it were impossible that any Creature could be composed, consist, or be dissolved; for if there were Matter without Motion, there could be no com­position or dissolution of such figures as are named Creatures; nor any, if there were Motion without Matter, or (which is the same) an Immaterial Mo­tion; For can any part of reason, that is regular, believe, that that which naturally is nothing, should produce a natural something? Besides, said they, Material and Immaterial are so quite opposite to each other, as [Page] 'tis impossible they should commix and work together, or act one upon the other: nay, if they could, they would make but a confusion, being of contrary na­tures: Wherefore it is most probable, and can to the perception of Regular sense and reason be no otherwise, but that self-moving Matter, or corporeal figurative self-motion, does act and govern, wisely, orderly and easily, poising cr ballancing extreams with proper and fit oppositions, which could not be done by immate­rials, they being not capable of natural compositions and divisions; neither of dividing Matter, nor of be­ing divided? In short, although there are numerous corporeal figurative motions in one composed figure, yet they are so far from disturbing each other, that no Creature could be produced without them; and as the actions of retention are different from the actions of di­gestion or expulsion, and the actions of contraction from those of dilation; so the actions of imitation or patterning are different from the voluntary actions vul­garly called Conceptions, and all this to make an equal poise or ballance between the actions of Nature. Al­so there is difference in the degrees of motions, in swift­ness, slowness, rarity, density, appetites, passions, youth, age, growth, decay, &c. as also between se­veral sorts of perceptions: all which proves, that Na­ture is composed of self-moving parts, which are the cause of all her varieties: But this is well to be observed, said they, that the Rational parts are the purest, and [Page] consequently the most active parts of Nature, and have the quickest actions; wherefore to ballance them, there must be a dull part of Matter, which is the Inanimate, or else a World would be made in an instant, and eve­ry thing would be produced, altered and dissolved on a sudden, as they had mentioned before.

Well, replied my later Thoughts, if there be such op­positions between the parts of Nature, then I pray in­form us, whether they be all equally and exactly poised and ballanced?

To which the former answered, That though it was most certain that there was a poise and ballance of Na­tures corporeal actions; yet no particular Creature was able to know the exactness of the proportion that is between them, because they are infinite.

Then my later Thoughts desired to know, whether Motion could be annihilated?

The former said, no: because Nature was Infinite, and admitted of no addition nor diminution; and con­sequently of no new Creation nor annihilation of any part of hers.

But, said the later, If Motion be an accident, it may be annihilated.

The former answered, They did not know what they meant by the word Accident.

The later said, That an Accident was something in a body, but nothing without a body.

[Page] If an Accident be something, answered the former, Then certainly it must be body; for there is nothing but what is corporeal in Nature; and if it be body, then it cannot be nothing at no time, but it must of ne­cessity be something.

But it cannot subsist of, and by it self, replied my la­ter Thoughts, as a substance; for although it hath its own being, yet its being is to subsist in another body.

The former answered, That if an Accident was no­thing without a body or substance, and yet something in a body; then they desired to know, how, being no­thing, it could subsist in another body, and be sepa­rated from another body; for composition and division, said they, are attributes of a body, since nothing can be composed or divided but what has parts; and no­thing has parts but what is corporeal or has a body, and therefore if an accident can be in a body, and be sepa­rated from a body, it would be non-sense to call it no­thing.

But then my later Thoughts asked, that when a parti­cular Motion ceased, what became of it?

The former answered, it was not annihilated, but changed.

The later said, How can motion be corporeal, and yet one thing with body? Certainly if body be mate­rial, and motion too, they must needs be two seve­ral substances.

[Page] The former answered, That motion and body were not two several substances; but motion and mat­ter made one self-moving body; and so was place, co­lour, figure, &c. all one and the same with body.

The later replied, That a Man, and his action were not one and the same, but two different things.

The former answered, That a Man, and his actions were no more different, then a man was different from himself; for, said they, although a man may have many different actions, yet were not that man existent, the same actions would not be; for though many men have the like actions, yet they are not the same.

But then replied the later, Place cannot be the same with body, nor colour; because a man may change his place and his colour, and yet retain his body.

Truly, said the former, If Place be changed, then Body must change also; for wheresoever is Place, there is Body; and though it be a vulgar phrase, That a man changes his place when he heremoves, yet it is not a proper Philosophical expression; for he removes onely from such parts, to such parts; so that it is a change or a division and composition of parts, and not of place: And as for colour, though it changes, yet that proves not that it is not a body, or can be annihilated. The truth is, though Figure, Motion, Colour, &c. do change, yet they remain still in Nature, and it is im­possible that Nature can give away, or lose the least of her corporeal Attributes or Proprieties; for Nature [Page] is infinite in power, as well as in act; we mean, for acting naturally; and therefore whatsoever is not in present act, is in the power of Infinite Nature.

But, said my later Thoughts, if a body be divided into very minute parts as little as dust, where is the co­lour then?

The Colour, answered the former, is divided as well as the body; and though the parts thereof be not subject to our sensitive perception, yet they have never­theless their being; for all things cannot be perceptible by our senses.

The later said, That the Colour of a Man's face could change from pale to red, and from red to pale, and yet the substance of the face remain the same; which proved, that colour and substance was not the same.

The former answered, That although the colour of a mans face did change without altering the substance thereof, yet this proved no more that Colour was Im­material, then that Motion was Immaterial; for a man may put his body into several postures, and have seve­ral actions, and yet without any change of the sub­stance of his body; for all actions do not necessarily im­port a change of the parts of a composed figure, there being infinite sorts of actions.

We will leave Accidents, said my later Thoughts, and return to the Inanimate part of Matter; and since you declare, that all parts of Nature do worship and adore God, you contradict your self in allowing an [Page] Inanimate degree of Matter, by reason, where there is no self-motion, there can be no perception of God, and consequently no Worship and Adoration.

The former answered, That the knowledg of God did not consist in exterior perception; for God, said they, being an Infinite, Incomprehensible, superna­tural and Immaterial Essence, void of all parts, can no ways be subject to Perception. Nevetheless, although no part can have an exterior perception of the substance of God, as it has of particular natural Creatures, yet it has Conceptions of the Existence of God, to wit, that there is a God above Nature, on which Nature depends, and from whose Immutable and Eternal Decree it has its Eternal Being, as God's Eternal Ser­vant; but what God is in his Essence, neither Nature, nor any of her parts or Creatures is able to conceive. And therefore although the Inanimate part of Matter is not perceptive, yet having an innate knowledg and life of it self, it is not improbable but it may also have an interior, fixt, and innate knowledg of the Existency of God, as that he is to be adored and worshipped: And thus the Inanimate part may after its own manner wor­ship and adore God, as much as the other parts in their way: for it is probable, that God having endued all parts of Nature with self-knowledg, may have given them also an Interior knowledg of himself, that is, of his Existency, how he is the God of Nature, and ought to be worshipped by her as his Eternal servant.

[Page] My later Thoughts excepted, That not any Crea­ture did truly know it self, much less could it be ca­pable of knowing God.

The former answered, That this was caused through the variety of self-motion; for all Creatures (said they) are composed of many several parts, and every part has its own particular self-knowledg, as well as self-motion, which causes an ignorance be­tween them; for one parts knowledg is not another parts knowledg; nor does one part know what ano­ther knows; but all knowledg of exterior parts comes by perception; nevertheless, each part knows it self and its own actions; and as there is an ignorance between parts, so there is also an acquaintance (espe­cially in the parts of one composed Creature) and the rational parts being most subtile, active and free, have a more general acquaintance then the sensitive; besides, the sensitive many times inform the rational, and the rational the sensitive, which causes a gene­ral agreement of all the parts of a composed figure, in the execution of such actions as belong to it.

But how is it possible, replied my later Thoughts, that the inanimate part of matter can be living and self-knowing, and yet not self-moving? for Life and Knowledg cannot be without self-motion; and therefore if the inanimate parts have Life and Know­ledg, they must necessarily also have self-motion.

[Page] The former answered, That Life and Knowledg did no ways depend upon self-motion; for had Na­ture no motion at all, yet might she have Life and Kowledg; so that self-motion is not the cause of Life and Knowledg, but onely of Perception, and all the various actions of Nature; and this is the reason said they, that the inanimate part of matter is not perceptive, because it is not self-moving; for though it hath life and self-knowledg as well as the Animate part, yet it has not an active life, nor a perceptive knowledg. By which you may see, that a fixt and interior self-knowledg, may very well be without exterior perception; for though perception presup­poses an innate self-knowledg as its ground and prin­ciple, yet self-knowledg does not necessarily require perception, which is onely caused by self-motion; for self-motion, as it is the cause of the variety of Natures parts and actions, so it is also of their vari­ous perceptions: If it was not too great a presum­tion, said they, we could give an instance of God, who has no local self-motion, and yet is infinitely knowing: But we'l forbear to go so high, as to draw the Infinite, Incomprehensible God, to the proofs of Material Nature.

My later Thoughts replied, first, That if it were thus, then one and the same parts of matter would have a double life, and a double knowledg.

Next they said, That if perception were an effect [Page] of self-motion, then God himself must necessarily be self-moving, or else he could not perceive Nature and her parts and actions.

Concerning the first objection my former thoughts answered, That the parts of Nature could have a double life and knowledg no more, then one man could be call'd double or treble: You might as well said they, make millions of men of one particular man, nay, call every part or action of his a peculi­liar man, as make one and the same part of matter have a double life and knowledg.

But mistake us not, added my former thoughts, when we say, that one and the same part cannot have a double life and knowledg; for we mean not, the composed creatures of Nature, which as they consist of several degrees of matter, so they have al­so several degrees of lives and knowledges; but it is to be understood of the essential or constitutive parts of Nature; for as the rational part is not, nor can be the sensitive part, so it can neither have a sen­sitive knowledg; no more can a sensitive part have a rational knowledg, or either of these the know­ledg of the inanimate part; but each part retains its own life and knowledg. Indeed it is with these parts as it is with particular creatures; for as one man is not another man, nor has another mans know­ledg, so it is likewise with the mentioned parts of matter; and although the animate parts have an [Page] interior, innate self-knowledg, and an exterior, per­ceptive knowledg; yet these are not double know­ledges; but perception is onely an effect of interior self-knowledg, occasioned by self-motion.

And as for the second, they answered, That the Divine Perception and Knowledg was not any ways like a natural Perception, no more than God was like a Creature; for Nature (said they) is materi­al, and her perceptions are amongst her infinite parts, caused by their compositions and divisions; but God is a Supernatural, Individable, and Incorporeal Be­ing, void of all Parts and Divisions; and therefore he cannot be ignorant of any the least thing; but being Infinite, he has an Infinite Knowledg, with­out any Degrees, Divisions, or the like actions be­longing to Material Creatures. Nor is he naturally, that is, locally self-moving; but he is a fixt, unal­terable, and in short, an incomprehensible Being, and therefore no comparison can be made between Him and Nature, He being the Eternal God, and Nature his Eternal Servant.

Then my later Thoughts said, That as for the know­ledg of God, they would not dispute of it; but if there was a fixt and interior, innate knowledg in all Natures parts and Creatures, it was impossible that there could be any error or ignorance between them.

The former answered, that although Errors belong­ed to particulars as well as ignorance, yet they proceeded [Page] not from interior self-knowledg, but either from want of exterior particular knowledges, or from the irregu­larity of motions; and Ignorance was likewise a want not of interior, but exterior knowledg, otherwise cal­led Perceptive knowledg: for, said they, Parts can know no more of other parts, but by their own percep­tions; and since no particular Creature or part of Na­ture can have an Infallible, Universal, and thorow per­ception of all other parts; it can neither have an infal­lible and universal knowledg, but it must content it self with such a knowledg as is within the reach of its own perceptions; and hence it follows, that it must be ignorant of what it does not know; for Perception has but onely a respect to the exterior figures and actions of other parts; and though the Rational part is more sub­til and active then the Sensitive, and may have also some perceptions of some interior parts and actions of other Creatures, yet it cannot have an infallible and tho­row perception of all their interior parts and motions, which is a knowledg impossible for any particular Creature to attain to.

Again my later Thoughts objected, That it was impossible that the parts of one and the same degree could be ignorant of each others actions, how various soever, since they were capable to change their acti­ons to the like figures.

The former answered first, That although they might make the like figures, yet they could not make [Page] the same, because the parts were not the same. Next they said, that particular parts could not have infinite perceptions, but that they could but perceive such ob­jects as were subject to that sort of perception which they had; no not all such; for oftentimes objects were obscured and hidden from their perceptions, that al­though they could perceive them if presented, or com­ing within the compass and reach of their perceptive fa­culty or power; yet when they were absent, they could not; besides, said they, the sensitive parts are not so subtile as to make perceptions into the interior actions of other parts, no not the rational are able to have ex­act perceptions thereof; for Perception extends but to adjoining parts and their exterior figures and actions, and if they know any thing of their interior parts, figures or motions, it is onely by guess or probable conclusions, taken from their exterior actions or figures, and made especially by the rational parts, which as they are the most inspective, so they are the most knowing parts of Nature.

After these and several other objections, questions and answers between the later and former thoughts and conceptions of my mind, at last some Rational thoughts which were not concerned in this dispute, perceiving that they became much heated, and fearing they would at last cause a Faction or Civil War amongst all the rational parts, which would breed that which is called a Trouble of the Mind, endeavoured to make a Peace [Page] between them, and to that end they propounded, that the sensitive parts should publickly declare their diffe­rences and controversies, and refer them to the Arbi­tration of the judicious and impartial Reader. This proposition was unanimously embraced by all the rati­onal parts, and thus by their mutual consent this Ar­gumental Discourse was set down and published after this manner: In the mean time all the rational parts of my Mind inclined to the opinion of my former concepti­ons, which they thought much more probable then those of the later; and since now it is your part, Inge­nious Readers, to give a final decision of the Cause, consider well the subject of their quarrel, and be impar­tial in your judgment; let not Self-love or Envy cor­rupt you, but let Regular Sense and Reason be your onely Rule, that you may be accounted just Judges, and your Equity and Justice be Remembred by all that honour and love it.

THE TABLE OF All the Principal Subjects contained and discoursed of in this BOOK.

Observations upon Experimental Philosophy.
  • 1. OF Humane Sense and Perception.
  • 2. Of Art and Experimental Philosophy.
  • 3. Of Micrography, and of Magnifying and Multiplying Glasses.
  • 4. Of the production of Fire by Flint and Steel.
  • 5. Of Pares.
  • 6. Of the Effluviums of the Loadstone.
  • 7. Of the Stings of Nettles and Bees.
  • 8. Of the Beard of a wild Oat.
  • 9. Of the Eyes of Flyes.
  • 10. Of a Butter-Flye.
  • 11. Of the walking Motions of Flyes, and other Crea­tures.
  • [Page] 12. Whether it be possible to make man, and some other Animal Creatures, flye as Birds do?
  • 13. Of Snails and Leeches, and whether all Animals haue Blood?
  • 14. Of Natural Productions.
  • 15. Of the Seeds of Vegetables.
  • 16. Of the Providence of Nature; and some Opinions concerning Motion.
  • 17. Des Cartes Opinion of Motion Examined.
  • 18. Of the blackness of a Charcoal, and of Light.
  • 19. Of the Pores of a Charcoal, and of Emptiness.
  • 20. Of Colours.
  • 21. Whether an Idea haue a Colour, and of the Idea of of a Spirit?
  • 22. Of Wood petrified.
  • 23. Of the Nature of Water.
  • 24. Of Salt, and of Sea or Salt-water.
  • 25. Of the motions of Heat and Cold.
  • 26. Of the Measures, Degrees, and different sorts of Heat and Cold.
  • 27. Of Congelation or Freezing.
  • 28. Of Thawing, or dissolving of frozen Bodies.
  • 29. Several Questions resolved concerning Cold and Fro­zen Bodies.
  • 30. Of Contraction and Dilation.
  • 31. Of the Parts of Nature, and of Atomes.
  • 32. Of the Celestial parts of this World, and whether they be alterable?
  • [Page] 33. Of the Substance of the Sun, and of Fire.
  • 34. Of Telescopes.
  • 35. Of Knowledge and Perception in general.
  • 36. Of the different Perceptions of Sense and Reason.
  • 37. Several Questions and Answers concerning Know­ledg and Perception.
Further Observations upon Experimental Philoso­phy, reflecting withall upon some Principal Subjects in Contemplative Philosophy.
  • 1. Ancient Learning ought not to be Exploded; nor the Experimental Part of Philosophy preferred before the Speculative.
  • 2. Whether Artificial Effects may be called Natural; and in what sense?
  • 3. Of Natural Matter and Motion.
  • 4. Nature cannot be known by any of her Parts.
  • 5. Art cannot produce new Forms in Nature.
  • 6. Whether there be any Prime or Principal Figures in Nature, and of the true Principles of Nature.
  • 7. Whether Nature be self-moving?
  • 8. Of Animal Spirits.
  • 9. Of the Doctrine of the Scepticks concerning the Know­ledg of Nature.
  • 10. Of Natural Sense and Reason.
  • 11. Of a general Knowledg and Worship of God, given him by all Natural Creatures.
  • [Page] 12. Of a particular Worship of God given him by those that are his Chosen and Elect People.
  • 13. Of the Knowledg of man.
  • 14. A Natural Philosopher cannot be an Atheist.
  • 15. Of the Rational Soul of Man.
  • 16. Whether Animal Parts separated from their Bodies, have life?
  • 17. Of the Spleen.
  • 18. Of Anatomy.
  • 19. Of preserving the Figures of Animal Creatures.
  • 20. Of Chymistry, and Chymical Principles.
  • 21. Of the Vniversal Medicine, and of Diseases.
  • 22. Of outward Remedies.
  • 23. Of several sorts of Drink and Meat.
  • 24. Of Fermentation.
  • 25. Of the Plague.
  • 26. Of Respiration.
Observations upon the Opinions of some Ancient Philosophers.
  • 1. Vpon the Principles of Thales.
  • 2. Some few Observations on Plato's Doctrine.
  • 3. Vpon the Doctrine of Pythagoras.
  • 4. Of Epicurus his Principles of Philosophy.
  • 5. On Aristotle's Philosophical Principles.
  • 6. Of Scepticism, and some other Sects of the Ancient.
  • An Explanation of some obscure and doubtful Passages oc­curring in the Philosophical Works hitherto Publish'd by the Authoress.

A CATALOGUE OF ALL THE WORKS Hitherto Published by the AUTHORESSE.

SInce it is the fashion to declare what Books one has put forth to the publick view, I thought it not amiss to follow the Mode, and set down the Number of all the Writings of mine which hither­to have been Printed.

  • 1. Poems in Fol. Printed twice, whereof the last Im­pression is much mended.
  • 2. Natures Pictures; or Tales in Verse and Prose, in Fol.
  • 3. A Little Tract of Philosophy, in 8o
  • 4. Philosophical and Physical Opinions, in Fol.
  • 5. The same much Enlarged and Altered, in Fol.
  • 6. Philosophical Letters, in Fol.
  • 7. The Worlds Olio, now to be reprinted.
  • 8. Playes in Fol.
  • 9. Orations in Fol.
  • 10. Sociable Letters in Fol.

There are some others that never were Printed yet, which shall, if God grant me Life and Health, be Published ere long.

OBSERVATIONS UPON EXPERIMENTAL PHILOSOPHY.

1. Of Humane Sense and Perception.

BEfore I deliver my observations up­on that part of Philosophy which is call'd Experimental, I thought it necessary to premise some discourse concerning the Perception of Hu­mane Sense. It is known that man has five Exterior Senses, and every sense is ignorant of each other; for the Nose knows not what the Eyes see, nor the Eyes what the Ears hear, neither do the Ears know what the Tongue tastes; and as for Touch, although it is a general Sense, yet every several part of the body has a several touch, and each part is ignorant of each others touch: And thus there is a general igno­rance of all the several parts, and yet a perfect know­ledg in each part; for the Eye is as knowing as the Ear, [Page 2] and the Ear as knowing as the Nose, and the Nose as knowing as the Tongue, and one particular Touch knows as much as another, at least is capable thereof: Nay, not onely every several Touch, Taste, Smell, Sound or Sight, is a several knowledg by it self, but each of them has as many particular knowledges or perceptions as there are objects presented to them: Be­sides, there are several degrees in each particular sense; As for example, some Men (I will not speak of other animals) their perception of sight, taste, smell, touch, or hearing, is quicker to some sorts of objects, then to others, according either to the perfection or imper­fection, or curiosity or purity of the corporeal figura­tive motions of each sense, or according to the presen­tation of each object proper to each sense; for if the presentation of the objects be imperfect, either through variation or obscurity, or any other ways, the sense is deluded. Neither are all objects proper for one sense, but as there are several senses, so there are se­veral sorts of objects proper for each several sense. Now if there be such variety of several knowledges, not onely in one Creature, but in one sort of sense; to wit, the exterior senses of one humane Creature; what may there be in all the parts of Nature? 'Tis true, there are some objects which are not at all perceptible by any of our exterior senses; as for example, rari­fied air, and the like: But although they be not sub­ject to our exterior sensitive perception, yet they are [Page 3] subject to our rational perception, which is much pu­rer and subtiler then the sensitive; nay, so pure and subtil a knowledg, that many believe it to be immate­rial, as if it were some God, when as it is onely a pure, fine and subtil figurative Motion or Perception; it is so active and subtil, as it is the best informer and reformer of all sensitive Perception; for the rational Matter is the most prudent and wisest part of Nature, as being the designer of all productions, and the most pious and devoutest part, having the perfectest notions of God, I mean, so much as Nature can possibly know of God; so that whatsoever the sensitive Perception is either de­fective in, or ignorant of, the rational Perception sup­plies. But mistake me not: by Rational Perception and Knowledg, I mean Regular Reason, not Irregu­lar; where I do also exclude Art, which is apt to de­lude sense, and cannot inform so well as Reason doth; for Reason reforms and instructs sense in all its actions: But both the rational and sensitive knowledg and per­ception being divideable as well as composeable, it causes ignorance as well as knowledg amongst Natures Creatures; for though Nature is but one body, and has no sharer or copartner, but is intire and whole in it self, as not composed of several different parts or sub­stances, and consequently has but one Infinite natural knowledg and wisdom, yet by reason she is also divide­able and composeable, according to the nature of a body, we can justly and with all reason say, That, as [Page 4] Nature is divided into infinite several parts, so each se­veral part has a several and particular knowledg and perception, both sensitive and rational, and again that each part is ignorant of the others knowledg and per­ception; when as otherwise, considered altogether and in general, as they make up but one infinite body of Nature, so they make also but one infinite general knowledg. And thus Nature may be called both In­dividual, as not having single parts subsisting without her, but all united in one body; and Divideable, by reason she is partable in her own several corporeal fi­gurative motions, and not otherwise; for there is no Vacuum in Nature, neither can her parts start or re­move from the Infinite body of Nature, so as to sepa­rate themselves from it, for there's no place to flee to, but body and place are all one thing, so that the parts of Nature can onely joyn and disjoyn to and from parts, but not to and from the body of Nature. And since Nature is but one body, it is intirely wise and knowing, ordering her self-moving parts with all facility and ease, without any disturbance, living in pleasure and delight, with infinite varieties and curiosities, such as no single Part or Creature of hers can ever attain to.

2. Of Art, and Experimental Philosophy.

SOme are of opinion, That by Art there can be a reparation made of the Mischiefs and Imperfections mankind has drawn upon it self by negligence and intem­perance, and a wilful and superstitious deserting the Pre­scripts and Rules of Nature, whereby every man, both from a derived Corruption, innate and born with him, and from his breediug and converse with men, is very subject to slip into all sorts of Errors. But the all-powerful God, and his servant Nature, know, that Art, which is but a particular Creature, cannot inform us of the Truth of the Infinite parts of Nature, being but finite it self; for though every Creature has a double per­ception, rational and sensitive, yet each creature or part has not an Infinite perception; nay, although each particular creature or part of Nature may have some conceptions of the Infinite parts of Nature, yet it can­not know the truth of those Infinite parts, being but a finite part it self, which finiteness causes errors in Perceptions; wherefore it is well said, when they con­fess themselves, That the uncertainty and mistakes of humane actions proceed either from the narrowness and wandring of our senses, or from the slipperiness or delusion of our memory, or from the confinement or rashness of our understandiug. But, say they, It is no wonder that our power over natural Causes and Effects is so slowly im­proved, [Page 6] seeing we are not onely to contend with the obscu­rity and difficulty of the things whereon we work and think, but even the forces of our minds conspire to betray us: And these being the dangers in the process of Humane Rea­son, the remedies can onely proceed from the Real, the Mechanical, the Experimental Philosophy, which hath this advantage over the Philosophy of discourse and dis­putation, That whereas that chiefly aims at the subtilty of its deductions and conclusions, without much regard to the first ground-work, which ought to be well laid on the sense and memory, so this intends the right ordering of them all, and making them serviceable to each other. In which discourse I do not understand, first, what they mean by our power over natural causes and effects; for we have no power at all over natural causes and effects, but onely one particular effect may have some power over another, which are natural actions; but neither can natural causes nor effects be over-powred by man so, as if man was a degree above Nature, but they must be as Nature is pleased to order them; for Man is but a small part, and his powers are but particular actions of Nature, and therefore he cannot have a supreme and absolute power. Next, I say, That Sense, which is more apt to be deluded then Reason, cannot be the ground of Reason, no more then Art can be the ground of Nature: Wherefore discourse shall sooner find or trace Natures corporeal figurative motions, then de­luding Arts can inform the Senses; For how can a [Page 7] Fool order his understanding by Art, if Nature has made it defective? or how can a wise man trust his sen­ses, if either the objects be not truly presented accord­ing to their natural figure and shape, or if the senses be defective, either through age, sickness, or other accidents, which do alter the natural motions proper to each sense? And hence I conclude, that Experimental and Mecha­nick Philosophy cannot be above the Speculative part, by reason most Experiments have their rise from the Speculative, so that the Artist or Mechanick is but a servant to the Student.

3. Of Micrography, and of Magnifying and Mul­tiplying Glasses.

ALthough I am not able to give a solid judgment of the Art of Micrography, and the several dioptrical instruments belonging thereto, by reason I have nei­ther studied nor practised that Art; yet of this I am confident, that this same Art, with all its Instruments, is not able to discover the interior natural motions of a­ny part or creature of Nature; nay, the questions is, whether it can represent yet the exterior shapes and motions so exactly, as naturally they are; for Art doth more easily alter then inform: As for example; Art makes Cylinders, Concave and Convex-glasses, and the like, which represent the figure of an object in no part exactly and truly, but very deformed and mis­shaped: [Page 8] also a Glass that is flaw'd, crack'd, or broke, or cut into the figure of Lozanges, Triangles, Squares, or the like, will present numerous pictures of one ob­ject. Besides, there are so many alterations made by several lights, their shadows, refractions, reflexi­ons, as also several lines, points, mediums, inter­posing and intermixing parts, forms and positions, as the truth of an object will hardly be known; for the perception of sight, and so of the rest of the senses, goes no further then the exterior Parts of the object presented; and though the Perception may be true, when the object is truly presented, yet when the presentation is false, the information must be false also. And it is to be observed, that Art, for the most part, makes hermaphroditical, that is, mixt fi­gures, as partly Artificial, and partly Natural: for Art may make some metal, as Pewter, which is be­tween Tin and Lead, as also Brass, and numerous other things of mixt natures; In the like manner may Artificial Glasses present objects, partly Natural, and partly Artificial; nay, put the case they can pre­sent the natural figure of an object, yet that natural figure may be presented in as monstrous a shape, as it may appear mis-shapen rather then natural: For ex­ample; a Lowse by the help of a Magnifying-glass, appears like a Lobster, where the Microscope enlarg­ing and magnifying each part of it, makes them big­ger and rounder then naturally they are. The truth [Page 9] is, the more the figure by Art is magnified, the more it appears mis-shapen from the natural, in so much as each joynt will appear as a diseased, swell'd and tumid body, ready and ripe for incision. But mistake me not; I do not say, that no Glass presents the true picture of an object; but onely that Magnifying, Multiply­ing, and the like optick Glasses, may, and do often­times present falsly the picture of an exterior object; I say, the Picture, because it is not the real body of the object which the Glass presents, but the Glass onely figures or patterns out the picture presented in and by the Glass, and there may easily mistakes be committed in taking Copies from Copies. Nay, Artists do confess themselves, that Flies, and the like, will ap­pear of several figures or shapes, according to the seve­ral reflections, refractions, mediums and positions of several lights; which if so, how can they tell or judg which is the truest light, position, or medium, that doth present the object naturally as it is? and if not, then an edge may very well seem flat, and a point of a needle a globe; but if the edge of a knife, or point of a needle were naturally and really so as the microscope presents them, they would never be so useful as they are; for a flat or broad plain-edged knife would not cut, nor a blunt globe pierce so suddenly another bo­dy, neither would or could they pierce without tear­ing and rending, if their bodies were so uneven; and if the Picture of a young beautiful Lady should be [Page 10] drawn according to the representation of the Micro­scope, or according to the various refraction and re­flection of light through such like glasses, it would be so far from being like her, as it would not be like a hu­mane face, but rather a Monster, then a picture of Na­ture. Wherefore those that invented Microscopes, and such like dioptrical Glasses, at first, did, in my o­pinion, the world more injury then benefit; for this Art has intoxicated so many mens brains, and wholly imployed their thoughts and bodily actions about phae­nomena, or the exterior figures of objects, as all better Arts and Studies are laid aside; nay, those that are not as earnest and active in such imployments as they, are, by many of them, accounted unprofitable subjects to the Commonwealth of Learning. But though there be numerous Books written of the wonders of these Glasses, yet I cannot perceive any such, at best, they are but superficial wonders, as I may call them. But could Experimental Philosophers find out more bene­ficial Arts then our Fore-fathers have done, either for the better increase of Vegetables and brute Animals to nourish our bodies, or better and commodious contri­vances in the Art of Architecture to build us houses, or for the advancing of trade and traffick to provide ne­cessaries for us to live, or for the decrease of nice distin­ctions and sophistical disputes in Churches, Schools and Courts of Judicature, to make men live in unity, peace and neighbourly sriendship, it would not onely be [Page 11] worth their labour, but of as much praise as could be given to them: But as Boys that play with watry BubblesGlass-tubes., or fling DustAtomes. into each others Eyes, or make a Hobby-horseExterior figures. of Snow, are worthy of reproof ra­ther then praise; for wasting their time with useless sports; so those that addict themselves to unprofitable Arts, spend more time then they reap benefit thereby. Nay, could they benefit men either in Husbandry, Ar­chitecture, or the like necessary and profitable imploy­ments, yet before the Vulgar sort would learn to un­derstand them, the world would want Bread to eat, and Houses to dwell in, as also Cloths to keep them from the inconveniences of the inconstant weather. But truly, although Spinsters were most experienced in this Art, yet they will never be able to spin Silk, Thred, or Wool, &c. from loose Atomes; neither will Wea­vers weave a Web of Light from the Sun's Rays, nor an Architect build an House of the bubbles of Water and Air, unless they be Poetical Spinsters, Weavers and Architects; and if a Painter should draw a Lowse as big as a Crab, and of that shape as the Microscope pre­sents, can any body imagine that a Beggar would be­lieve it to be true? but if he did, what advantage would it be to the Beggar? for it doth neither instruct him how to avoid breeding them, or how to catch them, or to hinder them from biting. Again: if a Painter should paint Birds according to those Colours the Mi­croscope presents, what advantage would it be for [Page 12] Fowlers to take them? Truly, no Fowler will be able to distinguish several Birds through a Microscope, neither by their shapes nor colours; They will be bet­ter discerned by those that eat their flesh, then by Mi­crographers that look upon their colours and exterior figures through a Magnifying-glass. In short, Mag­nifying-glasses are like a high heel to a short legg, which if it be made too high, it is apt to make the wearer fall, and at the best, can do no more then represent exterior figures in a bigger, and so in a more deformed shape and posture then naturally they are; but as for the interior form and motions of a Creature, as I said before, they can no more represent them, then Telescopes can the interior essence and nature of the Sun, and what matter it consists of; for if one that never had seen Milk be­fore, should look upon it through a Microscope, he would never be able to discover the interior parts of Milk by that instrument, were it the best that is in the World; neither the Whey, nor the Butter, nor the Curds. Wherefore the best optick is a perfect natu­ral Eye, and a regular sensitive perception, and the best judg is Reason, and the best study is Rational Contemplation joyned with the observations of regular sense, but not deiuding Arts; for Art is not onely gross in comparison to Nature, but, for the most part, deformed and defective, and at best produces mixt or hermaphroditical figures, that is, a third figure between Nature and Art: which proves, that natural Reason [Page 13] is above artificial Sense, as I may call it: wherefore those Arts are the best and surest Informers, that alter Nature least, and they the greatest deluders that alter Nature most, I mean, the particular Nature of each particular Creature; (for Art is so far from alter­ing Infinite Nature, that it is no more in comparison to it, then a little Flie to an Elephant, no not so much, for there is no comparison between finite and Infi­nite.) But wise Nature taking delight in variety, her parts, which are her Creatures, must of necessity do so too.

4. Of the Production of Fire by a Flint and Steel.

SOme learned Writers of Micrography, having observed the fiery sparks that are struck out by the violent motion of a Flint against Steel, suppose them to be little parcels either of the Flint or Steel, which by the violence of the stroke, are at the same time severed and made red hot; nay, sometimes to such a degree as they are melted together into glass. But whatsoever their opinion be, to my sense and reason it appears very dif­ficult to determine exactly how the production of Fire is made, by reason there are so many different sorts of Productions in Nature, as it is impossible for any par­ticular Creature to know or describe them: Never­theless, it is most probable, that those two bodies do operate not by incorporeal but corporeal motions, [Page 14] which either produce a third corporeal figure out of their own parts, or by striking against each other, do alter some of their natural corporeal figurative parts, so as to convert them into fire, which if it have no fuel to feed on, must of necessity die; or it may be, that by the occasion of striking against each other, some of their looser parts are metamorphosed, and afterwards return to their former figures again; like as flesh being bruised and hurt, becomes numb and black, and after returns again to its proper figure and colour; or like as Water that by change of motion in the same parts, turns into Snow, Ice, or Hail, may return again into its former figure and shape; for Nature is various in her corpo­real figurative motions. But it is observable, that Fire is like seeds of Corn sown in Earth, which increases or decreases according as it has nourishment; by which we may see that Fire is not produced from a bare imma­terial motion (as I said before;) for a spiritual issue cannot be nourished by a corporeal substance, but it is with Fire as it is with all, at least most other natural Creatures, which require Respiration as well as Per­ception; for Fire requires Air as well as Animals do. By Respiration, I do not mean onely that animal respi­ration which in Man, and other animal Creatures, is performed by the lungs, but a dividing and uniting, or separating and joyning of parts from and to parts, as of the exterior from and to the interior, and of the interior from and to the exterior; so that when some [Page 15] parts issue, others do enter: And thus by the name of Respiration I understand a kind of Reception of for­reign Matter, and emission of some of their own; as for example, in Animals, I mean not onely the respi­ration performed by the lungs, but also the reception of food, and of other matter entering through some pro­per organs and pores of their bodies, and the discharg­ing of some other matter the sameway; and if this be so, as surely it is, then all or most Creatures in Nature have some kind of Respiration or Reciprocal breathing, that is, Attraction and Expiration, receiving of nou­rishment and evacuation, or a reception of some for­reign parts, and a discharging and venting of some of their own. But yet it is not necessary that all the mat­ter of Respiration in all Creatures should be Air; for every sort of Creatures, nay every particular has such a matter of Respiration, as is proper both to the nature of its figure, and proper for each sort of respiration. Be­sides, although Air may be a fit substance for Respi­ration to Fire, and to some other Creatures, yet I can­not believe, that the sole agitation of Air is the cause of Fire, no more then it can be called the cause of Man; for if this were so, then Houses that are made of Wood, or cover'd with Straw, would never fail to be set on fire by the agitation of the Air. Neither is it requisite that all Respirations in all Creatures should be either hot or cold, moist or dry, by reason there are many different sorts of Respiration, acording to the nature and pro­priety [Page 16] of every Creature, whereof some may be hot, some cold; some hot and dry, some cold and dry; some hot and moist, some cold and moist, &c. and in Animals, at least in Mankind, I observe, that the re­spiration performed by the help of their lungs. is an attraction of some refrigerating air and an emission of some warm vapour. What other Creatures respi­rations may be, I leave for others to inquire.

5. Of Pores.

AS I have mentioned in my former Discourse, that I do verily believe all or most natural Creatures have some certain kind of respiration, so do I also find it most probable, that all or most natural Creatures have Pores: not empty Pores; for there can be no Vacuum in Nature, but such passages as serve for re­spiration, which respiration is some kind of receiving and discharging of such matter as is proper to the na­ture of every Creature: And thus the several Organs of Animal Creatures, are, for the most part, imploy­ed as great large pores; for Nature being in a perpe­tual motion, is always dissolving and composing, changing and ordering her self-moving parts as she pleases. But it is well to be observed, that there is difference between Perception and Respiration; for Perception is onely an action of Figuring or Pattern­ing, when as the Rational and Sensitive Motions do [Page 17] figure or pattern out something: but Respiration is an action of drawing, sucking, breathing in, or receiving any ways outward parts, and of venting, discharging, or sending forth inward parts. Next, although there may be Pores in most natural Creatures, by reason that all, or most have some kind of Respiration, yet Nature hath more ways of dividing and uniting of parts, or of ingress and egress, then the way of drawing in, and sending forth by Pores; for Nature is so full of variety, that not any particular corporeal figurative motion can be said the prime or fundamental, unless it be self-motion, the Architect and Creator of all fi­gures: Wherefore, as the Globular figure is not the prime or fundamental of all other figures, so neither can Respiration be called the prime or fundamental motion; for, as I said, Nature has more ways then one, and there are also retentive Motions in Nature, which are neither dividing nor composing, but keep­ing or holding together.

6. Of the Effluvium's of the Loadstone.

IT is the opinion of some, that the Magnetical Efflu­viums do not proceed intrinsecally from the stone, but are certain extrinsecal particles, which approaching to the stone, and finding congruous pores and inlets therein, are channelled through it; and having acquired a motion thereby, do continue their current so far, till being repulsed [Page 18] by the ambient air, they recoil again, and return into a vor­tical motion, and so continue their revolution for ever through the body of the Magnet. But if this were so, then all porous bodies would have the same Magne­tical Effluviums, especially a Char-coal, which, they say, is full of deep pores: besides, I can hardly believe, that any Microscope is able to shew how those flowing Atomes enter and issue, and make such a vortical mo­tion as they imagine. Concerning the argument drawn from the experiment, that a Magnet being made red hot in the fire, not onely amits the Magnetical Vigor it had before, but acquires a new one; doth not evince or prove that the Magnetical Effluviums are not innate or inhe­rent in the stone; for fire may over-power them so as we cannot perceive their vigour or force, the motions of the Fire being too strong for the motions of the Loadstone; but yet it doth not follow hence, that those motions of the Loadstone are lost, because they are not perceived, or that afterwards when by cooling the Loadstone they may be perceived again, they are not the same motions, but new ones, no more then when a man doth not move his hand the motion of it can be said lost or annihilated. But say they, If the Polary direction of the Stone should be thought to proceed intrinsecally from the Stone, it were as much as to put a Soul or Intelligence into the Stone, which must turn it a­bout, as Angels are feigned to do Celestial Orbs. To which I answer; That although the turning of the [Page 19] Celestial Orbs by Angels may be a figment, yet that there is a soul and intelligence in the Loadstone, is as true, as that there is a soul in Man. I will not say, that the Loadstone has a spiritual or immaterial soul, but a cor­poreal or material one, to wit, such a soul as is a par­ticle of the soul of Nature, that is, of Rational Matter, which moves in the Loadstone according to the propri­ety and nature of its figure. Lastly, as for their argu­ment concluding from the different effluviums of other, as for example, electrical and odoriferous bodies, &c. as Camphire, and the like, whose expirations, they say, fly away into the open air, and never make any re­turn again to the body from whence they proceeded; I cannot believe this to be so; for if odoriferous bodies should effluviate and waste after that manner, then all strong odoriferous bodies would be of no continuance, for where there are great expences, there must of ne­eessity follow a sudden waste: but the contrary is suf­ficiently known by experience. Wherefore, it is more probable, that the Effluviums of the Loadstone, as they call them, or the disponent and directive faculty of turning it self towards the North, is intrinsecally in­herent in the stone it self, and is nothing else but the interior natural sensitive and rational corporeal motions proper to its figure, as I have more at large declared in my Philosophical Letters, and Philosophical Opinions; then that a stream of ex­terior Atomes, by beating upon the stone, should [Page 20] turn it to and fro, until they have laid it in such a po­sition.

7. Of the Stings of Nettles and Bees.

I Cannot approve the opinion of those, who believe that the swelling, burning, and smarting pain caused by the stinging of Nettles and Bees, doth proceed from a poysonous juice, that is contained within the points of Nettles, or stings of Bees; for it is commonly known, that Nettles, when young, are often-times eaten in Sallets, and minced into Broths; nay, when they are at their full growth, good-huswifes use to lay their Cream-cheeses in great Nettles, whereas, if there were any poyson in them, the interior parts of animal bo­dies, after eating them, would swell and burn more then the exterior onely by touching them. And as for stings of Bees, whether they be poysonous or not, I will not certainly determine any thing, nor whether their stings be of no other use (as some say) then onely for defence or revenge; but this I know, that if a Bee once looseth its sting, it becomes a Drone; which if so, then surely the sting is useful to the Bee, either in making Wax and Honey, or in drawing, mixing and tempering the several sorts of juices, or in penetrating and piercing into Vegetables, or other bodies, after the manner of broaching or tapping, to cause the Liquor to issue out, or in framing the [Page 21] structure of their comb, and the like; for surely Na­ture doth not commonly make useless and unprofitable things, parts, or creatures: Neither doth her design tend to an evil effect, although I do not deny but that good and useful instruments may be and are often im­ployed in evil actions. The truth is, I find that stings are of such kind of figures as fire is, and fire of such a kind of figure as stings are; but although they be all of one general kind, nevertheless they are different in their particular kinds; for as Animal kind contains ma­ny several and different particular kinds or sorts of ani­mals, so the like do Vegetables, and other kinds of Creatures.

8. Of the beard of a wild Oat.

THose that have observed through a Microscope the beard of a wild Oat, do relate that it is onely a small black or brown bristle, growing out of the side of the inner husk, which covers the grain of a wild Oat, and appears like a small wreath'd sprig with two clefts; if it be wetted in water, it will appear to unwreath it self, and by degrees to streighten its knee, and the two clefts will become streight; but if it be suffered to dry again, it will by degrees wreath it self again, and so return into its former posture: The cause of which they suppose to be the differing texture of its parts, which seeming to have two substances, one very porous, loose and spongy, [Page 22] into which the watry steams of air may very easily be forced, which thereby will grow swell'd and extended; and a second, more hard and close, into which the wa­ter cannot at all or very little penetrate; and this retain­ing always the same dimensions, but the other stretch­ing and shrinking, according as there is more or less water or moisture in its pores, 'tis thought to produce this unwreathing and wreathing. But that this kind of motion, whether it be caused by heat and cold, or by dryness and moisture, or by any greater or less force, proceeding either from gravity and weight, or from wind, which is the motion of the air, or from some spring­ing body, or the like, should be the very first foot-step of sensation and animate motion, and the most plain, simple and obvious contrivance that Nature has made use of to produce a motion next to that of rarefaction and condensation by heat and cold, as their opinion is, I shall not easily be perswaded to believe; for if Ani­mate motion was produced this way, it would, in my opinion, be but a weak and irregular motion. Nei­ther can I conceive how these, or any other parts, could be set a moving, if Nature her self were not self­moving, but onely moved: Nor can I believe, that the exterior parts of objects are able to inform us of all their interior motions; for our humane optick sense looks no further then the exterior and superficial parts of solid or dense bodies, and all Creatures have several corporeal figurative motions one within another, which [Page 23] cannot be perceived neither by our exterior senses, nor by their exterior motions; as for example, our Optick sense can perceive and see through a transparent body, but yet it cannot perceive what that transparent bodies figurative motions are, or what is the true cause of its transparentness; neither is any Art able to assist our sight with such optick instruments as may give us a true information thereof; for what a perfect natural eye cannot perceive, surely no glass will be able to pre­sent.

9. Of the Eyes of Flies.

I Cannot wonder enough at the strange discovery made by the help of the Microscope concerning the great number of eyes observed in Flies; as that, for ex­ample, in a gray Drone-flie should be found clusters which contain about 14000 eyes: which if it be really so, then those Creatures must needs have more of the [...] sense then those that have but two, or one eye; [...] cannot believe, that so many [...] be made for no more use then one or two eyes are: for though Art, the emulating Ape of Nature, makes often vain and useless things, yet I can­not perceive that Nature her self doth so. But a greater wonder it is to me, that Man with the twinkling of one eye, can observe so many in so small a Creature, if it be not a deceit of the optick instrument: for as I [Page 24] have mentioned above, Art produces most com­monly hermaphroditical figures, and it may be, perhaps, that those little pearls or globes, which were taken for eyes in the mentioned Flie, are onely transparent knobs, or glossie shining spherical parts of its body, making refractions of the rayes of light, and reflecting the pictures of exterior objects, there being many Creatures, that have such shining protuberan­ces and globular parts, and those full of quick motion, which yet are not eyes. Truly, my reason can hard­ly be perswaded to believe, that this Artificial Informer (I mean the Microscope) should be so true as it is generally thought; for in my opinion it more deludes, then informs: It is well known, that if a fi­gure be longer, broader and bigger then its nature re­quires, it is not its natural figure, and therefore those Creatures, or parts of Creatures, which by Art ap­pear bigger then naturally they are, cannot be judged according to their natural figure, since they do not appear in their natural shape; but in an artificial one, that is, in a shape or figure magnified by Art, and extended beyond their natural figure; and since Man cannot judg otherwise of a figure then it appears, besides, if the Reflections and Positious of Light be so various and different as Experimental Philophers con­fess themselves, and the instrument not very exact, (for who knows but hereafter there may be many faults discovered of our modern Microscopes which [Page 25] we are not able to perceive at the present) how shall the object be truly known? Wherefore I can hardly believe the Truth of this Experiment concerning the numerous Eyes of Flies; they may have, as I said be­fore, glossy and shining globular protuberances, but not so many eyes; as for example, Bubbles of Water, Ice, as also Blisters and watry Pimples, and hundreds the like, are shining and transparent Hemispheres, re­flecting light, but yet not eyes; Nay, if Flies should have so many numerous Eyes, why can they not see the approach of a Spider until it be just at them; also how comes it that sometimes, as for example, in cold weather, they seem blind, so as one may take or kill them, and they cannot so much as perceive their ene­mies approach? surely if they had 14000 Eyes, all this number would seem useless to them, since other Crea­tures which have but two can make more advantage of those two eyes, then they of their vast number. But perchance some will say, That Flies having so many eyes, are more apt to be blind then others that have but few, by reason the number is the cause that each parti­cular is the weaker. To which I answer, That if two Eyes be stronger then a Thousand, then Nature is to be blamed that she gives such numbers of Eyes to so little a Creature. But Nature is wiser then we or any Creature is able to conceive; and surely she works not to no purpose, or in vain; but there appears as much wisdom in the fabrick and ftructure of her [Page 26] works, as there is variety in them. Lastly, I cannot well conceive the truth of the opinion of those, that think all eyes must have a transparent liquor, or humor within them, for in Crabs and Lobsters Eyes I can perceive none such; and there may also be many other animal Creatures which have none: for Nature is not tied to one way, but as she makes various Creatures, so she may and doth also make their parts and organs variously, and not the same in all, or after one and the same manner or way.

10. Of a Butter-flie.

COncerning the Generation of Butter-flies, whe­ther they be produced by the way of Eggs, as some Experimental Philosophers do relate, or any o­ther ways; or whether they be all produced after one and the same manner, shall not be my task now to de­termine; but I will onely give my Readers a short ac­count of what I my self have observed: When I lived beyond the Seas in Banishment with my Noble Lord, one of my Maids brought upon an old piece of wood, or stone (which it was I cannot perfectly remember) something to me which seemed to grow out of that same piece; it was about the length of half an inch or less, the tail was short and square, and seemed to be a Vege­table, for it was as green as a green small stalk, grow­ing out of the aforesaid piece of stone or wood; the [Page 27] part next the tail was like a thin skin, wherein one might perceive a perfect pulsation, and was big in pro­portion to the rest of the parts; The part next to that, was less in compass, and harder, but of such a substance as it was like Pewter or Tin: The last and extreme part opposite to the first mentioned green tail or stalk, seem'd like a head, round, onely it had two little points or horns before, which head seem'd to the eye and touch, like a stone, so that this Creature appeared partly a Ve­getable, Animal and Mineral; But what is more, it was in a continual motion, for the whole body of it seemed to struggle as if it would get loose from that piece of wood or stone the tail was joyned to, or out of which it grew; But I cutting and dividing its tail from the said piece, it ceased to move, and I did not regard it any further. After some while I found just such ano­ther insect, which I laid by upon the window, and one morning I spied two Butter-flies playing about it; which, knowing the window had been close shut all the while, and finding the insect all empty, and onely like a bare shell or skin, I supposed had been bred out of it; for the shell was not onely hollow and thin, but so brittle as it straight fell into pieces, and did somewhat resem­ble the skin of a Snake when it is cast; and it is obser­vable, that two Butter-flies were produced out of one shell, which I supposed to be male and female. But yet this latter I will not certainly affirm, for I could not discern them with my eyes, except I had had some Mi­croscope, [Page 28] but a thousand to one I might have been also deceived by it; and had I opened this insect, or shell, at first, it might perhaps have given those But­ter-flies an untimely death, or rather hinder'd their production. This is all I have observed of But­ter-flies, but I have heard also that Caterpillars are transformed into Butter-flies; whether it be true or not, I will not dispute, onely this I dare say, that I have seen Caterpillers spin as Silk-worms do, an oval ball about their seed, or rather about themselves.

11. Of the Walking Motions of Flies, and other Crea­tures.

WHat Experimental Writers mention concern­ing the feet of Flies, and their structure, to wit, that they have two claws or talons, and two palms or soles, by the help of which they can walk on the sides of glass, or other smooth bodies perpendicularly upwards; If this be the onely reason they can give, then certainly a Dormouse must have the same stru­cture of feet; for she will, as well as a flie, run streight upwards on the sharp edg of a glazed or well-polished Sword, which is more difficult then to run up the sides of Glass: And as for Flies, that they can suspend themselves against the undersurface of many bodies; I say, not onely Flies, but many other Creatures will do the same; for not onely great Caterpillers, or such worms as have many leggs, as also Spiders, but a [Page 29] Neut, which is but a little Creature, will run up a wall in a perpendicular line; nay, walk as Flies do with its back down, and its leggs upwards. Wherefore it is not, in my opinion, the Pores of the surface of the body, on which those Creatures walk; as for example, that a Flie should run the tenters or points of her feet, which some have observed through a Microscope, in­to the pores of such bodies she walks on, or make pores where she finds none; (for I cannot believe, that in such close and dense bodies, where no pores at all can be per­ceived, a small and weak legg of a Flie should pierce a hole so suddenly, and with one step) Nor an Ima­ginary Glue, nor a dirty or smoaky substance adhe­ring to the surface of glass, as some do conceive; nor so much the lightness of their bodies that makes those Creatures walk in such a posture; for many can do the same that are a thousand times heavier then a little Flie; but the chief cause is the shape of their bodies; which being longer then they are deep, one counterpoises the other; for the depth of their bodies has not so much weight as their length, neither are their heads and leggs just opposite: Besides, many have a great number of feet, which may easily bear up the weight of their bo­dies; and although some Creatures, as Horses, Sheep, Oxon, &c. have their leggs set on in the same manner as Mice, Squirrels, Cats, &c. yet they cannot run or climb upwards and downwards in a perpendicular line, as well as these Creatures do, by reason of the depth [Page 30] of their bodies from the soles of their feet to the surface of their back, the weight of their depth over-power­ing the strength of their leggs. Wherefore the weight of a Creature lies for the most part in the shape of its body, which shape gives it such sorts of actions as are proper for it; as for example, a Bird flies by its shape, a Worm crawls by its shape, a Fish swims by its shape, and a heavy Ship will bear it self up on the surface of water meerly by its exterior shape, it being not so much the interior figure or nature of Wood that gives it this faculty of bearing up, by reason we see that many pieces of Timber will sink down to the bottom in water. Thus Heaviness and Lightness is for the most part caused by the shape or figure of the body of a Creature, and all its exterior actions depend upon the exterior shape of its body.

Whether it be possible to make Man and other Ani­mal Creatures that naturally have no Wings, flie as Birds do.

SOme are of opinion, that is not impossible to make Man, and such other Creatures that naturally have no wings, flie as Birds do; but I have heard my Noble Lord and Husband give good reasons against it; For when he was in Paris, he discoursing one time with Mr. H. concerning this subject, told him that he thought it altogether impossible to be done: A Man, [Page 31] said he, or the like animal that has no Wings, has his arms set on his body in a quite opposite manner then Birds wings are; for the concave part of a Birds wing, which joins close to his body, is in man out­ward; and the inward part of a mans arm where it joins to his body, is in Birds placed outward; so that which is inward in a Bird, is outward in Man; and what is inward in Man, is outward in Birds; which is the reason that a Man has not the same motion of his arm which a Bird has of his wing. For Flying is but swimming in the Air; and Birds, by the shape and posture of their wings, do thrust away the air, and so keep themselves up; which shape, if it were found the same in Mans arms, and other animals leggs, they might perhaps flie as Birds do, nay, without the help of Feathers; for we see that Bats have but flesh-wings; neither would the bulk of their bodies be any hinderance to them; for there be many Birds of great and heavy bodies, which do nevertheless flie, although more slowly, and not so nimbly as Flies, or little Birds: Wherefore it is onely the different posture and shape of Mens arms, and other Animals leggs, contrary to the wings of Birds, that makes them unapt to flie, and not so much the bulk of their bodies. But I believe, that a four­legg'd Creature, or Animal, may more easily and safely go upright like Man, although it hath its leggs set on in a contrary manner to Mans arms and [Page 32] leggs; for a four-legg'd animals hind-leggs resem­ble man's arms, and its fore-leggs are just as man's leggs. Nevertheless there is no Art that can make a four legg'd Creature imitate the actions of man, no more then Art can make them have or imitate the natural actions of a Bird: For, Art cannot give new motions to natural parts, which are not pro­per or natural for them, but each part must have such proper and natural motions and actions as Na­ture has designed for it. I will not say, but Art may help to mend some defects, errors or irregularities in Nature, but not make better that which Nature has made perfect already. Neither can we say Man is defective, because he cannot flie as Birds: for fly­ing is not his natural and proper motion; We should rather account that Man monstrous that could flie, as having some motion not natural and proper to his fi­gure and shape; for that Creature is perfect in its kind, that has all the motions which are naturally re­quisite to the figure of such a kind: But Man is apt to run into extreams, and spoils Nature with doting too much upon Art.

13. Of Snails and Leeches, and whether all Animals have blood.

WHether Snails have a row of small teeth, orderly placed in the Gums, and divided into several smaller and greater; or whether they have but one small bended hard bone, which serves them instead of teeth, to bite out pretty large and half-round bits of the leaves of trees to feed on, Experimental Philoso­phers may enquire by the help of their Microscopes; My opinion is, That Snails are like Leeches, which will not onely bite, but suck; but this I do verily be­lieve, that Snails onely bite Vegetables, not Animals, as Leeches do; and though Leeches bite into the skin, yet they do not take any part away, but suck onely out the juicy part, that is, the blood, and leave the grosser substance of flesh behind; and so do Snails bite into herbs, to suck out the juicy substance, or else there would be found flesh in Leeches, and herbs in Snails, which is not; so that Snails and Leeches bite for no end, but onely to make a passage to suck out the juicy parts; and therefore I cannot perceive that they have bones, but I conceive their teeth or parts they pierce withal, to be somewhat of the nature of stings, which are no more Bones then the points of Fire are; I do not certainly af­firm they are stings, but my meaning is, that they are pointed or piercing figures, that is, as I said, of the nature [Page 34] of stings, there being many several sorts of pointed and piercing figures, which yet are not stings, like as there are several sorts of grinding and biting figures which are not teeth; for there are so many several sorts of fi­gures in Vegetables, Minerals, Animals and Ele­ments, as no particular Creature is able to conceive. Again, it is questioned, whether those Creatures that suck blood from others, have blood themselves, as naturally belonging to their own substance; and my o­pinion is, that it is no necessary consequence, that that should be a part of their substance on which they feed; food may be converted into the substance of their bo­dies by the figurative transforming motions, but it is not part of their substance before it is converted; and so many Creatures may feed on blood, but yet have none of themselves as a natural constitutive part of their be­ing: besides, there are Maggots, Worms, and seve­ral sorts of Flies, and other Creatures, that feed upon fruits and herbs, as also Lobsters, Crabs, &c. which neither suck blood, nor have blood, and therefore blood is not requisite to the life of every animal, al­though it is to the life of man, and several other animal Creatures; Neither do I believe, that all the juice in the veins, is blood (as some do conceive) for some of the juice may be in the way of being blood, and some may have altered its nature from being blood, to cor­ruption, which later will never be blood again, and some may onely be metamorphosed from blood, and [Page 35] reassume its own colour again; for it is as natural for blood to be red, as for the Sun to be light: Where­fore when some learned are of opinion, that those white, or yellow, or black juices which are found in the veins of small insects, are their blood, they might as well say, that brains are blood, or that the marrow in the bones, is blood; or if the brain should all be turned to water, say, that this water is brains; which would be as much as if one should call a mans body turned to dust and ashes, an animal Creature, or a man; for there are na­tural properties which belong to every Creature, and to each particular part of a Creature, and so is blood in some animals a natural vital part proper to the con­servation of its life, without which it cannot subsist: for example, a young Maid in the Green-sickness, when her veins are fuller of water, then blood, appears pale, and is always sickly, weak and faint, not able to stir, by reason her veins are fuller of water then blood, but were it all water, she would presently die. Where­fore all juices are not blood; nay, I cannot believe as yet, that those they call veins in some insects, are veins, much less that they contain blood, and have a circula­tion of blood, nor that their motions proceed from Muscles, Nerves and Tendons; but this I may say, that the veins are the proper and convenient vehicles or receptacles of blood, as the head is of brains, and the bones of marrow; also it is as proper for blood to be red, as for veins to contain blood, for bones to contain [Page 36] marrow, and for the head to contain brains; and when they alter or change from their particular na­tures, they are no more blood, brains nor marrow: Wherefore those Creatures that have a juice which is not red, have no blood; and if no blood, they have no veins. I will not say, that all those that have veins must of necessity have them full of blood; for in Dropsies, as also in the Green-sickness, as I men­tioned above, they are fuller of water then blood, but they must of necessity have some blood in their veins, by reason the veins are the most proper recep­tacles for blood, and no man can live without blood, but when all blood is turned to water, he must of ne­cessity die.

14. Of Natural Productions.

I Cannot wonder with those, who admire that a Creature which inhabits the air, doth yet produce a Creature, that for some time lives in the water as a fish, and afterward becomes an inhabitant of the air, for this is but a production of one animal from another; but what is more, I observe that there are producti­ons of and from Creatures of quite different kinds; as for example, that Vegetables can and do breed A­nimals, and Animals, Minerals and Vegetables, and so forth: Neither do I so much wonder at this, be­cause I observe that all Creatures of Nature are [Page 37] produced but out of one matter, which is common to all, and that there are continual and perpetual genera­tions and productions in Nature, as well as there are perpetual dissolutions. But yet I cannot believe, that some sorts of Creatures should be produced on a sudden by the way of transmigration or translation of parts, which is the most usual way of natural productions; for both natural and artificial productions are performed by degrees, which requires time, and is not done in an instant. Neither can I believe, that all natural things are produced by the way of seeds or eggs; for when I consider the variety of Nature, it will not give me leave to think that all things are produced after one and the same manner or way, by reason the figurative motions are too different, and too diversly various, to be tied to one way of acting in all productions; Where­fore as some Productions are done by the way of trans­migration or translation of parts, as for example, the Generation of Man, and other Animals, and others by a bare Metamorphosis or Transformation of their own parts into some other figure, as in the Generation of Maggots out of Cheese, or in the production of Ice out of water, and many the like, so each way has its own particular motions, which no particular Creature can persectly know. I have mentioned in my Philo­sophicalSect. 4. Let. 2 Letters, that no animal Creature can be pro­duced by the way of Metamorphosing, which is a change of Motions in the same parts of Matter, but (as [Page 38] I do also express in the same place) I mean such ani­mals which are produced one from another, and where the production of one is not caused by the destruction of the other; such Creatures, I say, it is impossible they should be produced by a bare Metamorphosis, without Transmigration or Translation of parts from the Generator: but such insects, as Maggots, and seve­ral sorts of Worms and Flies, and the like, which have no Generator of their own kind, but are bred out of Cheese, Earth and Dung, &c. their Production is onely by the way of Metamorphosing, and not Trans­slation of parts. Neither can I believe, as some do, that the Sun is the common Generator of all those in­sects that are bred within the Earth; for there are not onely Productions of Minerals and Vegetables, but also of Animals in the Earth deeper then the Sun can reach, and the heat of the Sun can pierce no further then cold can, which is not above two yards from the surface of the Earth, at least in our climate: But why may not the Earth, without the help of the Sun, produce Animal Creatures, as well as a piece of Cheese in a deep Cel­lar, where neither the Sun nor his Beams enter? Tru­ly, I wonder men will confine all Productions to one principal agent, and make the Sun the common Generator of all or most living insects, and yet confess that Nature is so full of variety, and that the Genera­tions and Productions of insects are so various, as not onely the same kind of Creature may be produced from [Page 39] several kinds of ways, but the very same Creature may produce several kinds. Nevertheless, I believe that natural Creatures are more numerously and vari­ously produced by dissolution of particulars by the way of Metamorphosing, then by a continued propagation of their own species by the way of translation of parts; and that Nature hath many more ways of Productions, then by seeds or seminal Principles, even in Vegetables, witness the Generation or Production of Moss, and the like Vegetables that grow on Stones, Walls, dead A­nimals sculls, tops of houses, &c. so that he who doth confine Nature but to one way of acting or moving, had better to deprive her of all motion, for Nature be­ing Infinite, has also infinite ways of acting in her par­ticulars. Some are of opinion, that the seed of Moss being exceeding small and light, is taken up, and carried to and fro in the air into every place, and by the falling drops of rain, is wash'd down out of it, and so dispersed into all places, and there takes onely root and propagates where it finds a convenient soil for it to thrive in; but this is onely a wild fancy, and has no ground, and no experimental Writer shall ever per­swade me, that by his Dioptrical glasses he has made any such experiment; wherefore I insist upon sense and rea­son, which inform me of the various productions of Na­ture, which cannot be reduced to one principal kind, but are more numerous then mans particular and finite reason can conceive. Neither is it a wonder to see [Page 40] Plants grow out of the Earth without any waste of the Earth, by reason there are perpetual compositi­ons and divisions in Nature, which are nothing else but an uniting and disjoyning of parts to and from parts, and prove that there is an interchangeable in­gress and egress, or a reciprocal breathing in all Na­tures parts, not perceptible by man; so that no man can tell the association of parts, and growing motions of any one, much less of all Creatures.

15. Of the Seeds of Vegetables.

SOme do call the seeds of Vegetables, the Cabinet of Nature, wherein are laid up her Jewels; but this, in my opinion, is a very hard and improper ex­pression; for I cannot conceive what Jewels Nature has, nor in what Cabinet she preserves them. Nei­ther are the seeds of Vegetables more then other parts or Creatures of Nature: But I suppose some conceive Nature to be like a Granary or Store-house of Pine­barley, or the like; which if so, I would fain know in what grounds those seeds should be sown to produce and increase; for no seeds can produce of themselves if they be not assisted by some other mat­ter, which proves, that seeds are not the prime or prin­cipal Creatures in Nature, by reason they depend upon some other matter which helps them in their productions; for if seeds of Vegetables did lie never so [Page 41] long in a store-house, or any other place, they would never produce until they were put into some proper and convenient ground: It is also an argument, that no Creature or part of Nature can subsist singly and pre­cised from all the rest, but that all parts must live toge­ther; and since no part can subsist and live without the other, no part can also be called prime or principal. Nevertheless all seeds have life as well as other Crea­tures; neither is it a Paradox to say, seeds are buried in life, and yet do live; for what is not in present act, we may call buried, intombed or inurned in the power of life; as for example, a man, when his figure is dissol­ved, his parts dispersed, and joyned with others, we may say his former form or figure of being such a par­ticular man is buried in its dissolution, and yet liveth in the composition of other parts, or which is all one, he doth no more live the life of a Man, but the life of some other Creature he is transformed into by the transform­ing and figuring motions of Nature; nay, although every particle of his former figure were joyned with se­veral other parts and particles of Nature, and every particle of the dissolved figure were altered from its for­mer figure into several other figures, nevertheless each of these Particles would not onely have life, by reason it has motion, but also the former figure would still re­main in all those Particles, though dispersed, and living several sorts of lives, there being nothing in Nature that can be lost or annihilated, but Nature is and con­tinues [Page 42] still the same as she was, without the least addi­tion or diminution of any the least thing or part, and all the varieties and changes of natural productions pro­ceed onely from the various changes of Motion. But to return to seeds; some Experimental Writers have observed, that the seed of Corn-violets, which looks almost like a very small Flea, through the Microscope appears a large body cover'd with a tough, thick and bright reflecting skin, very irregularly shrunk and pit­ted, insomuch that it is almost an impossibility to find two of them wrinkled alike, and wonder that there is such variety even in this little seed: But to me it is no wonder, when I consider the variety of Nature in all her works, not onely in the exterior, but also in the in­terior parts of every Creature; but rather a wonder to see two Creatures just alike each other in their exte­rior figures. And since the exterior figures of Crea­tures are not the same with the interior, but in many or most Creatures quite different, it is impossible that the exterior shape and structure of bodies can afford us sure and excellent instructions to the knowledg of their na­tures and interior motions, as some do conceive; for how shall a feather inform us of the interior nature of a Bird? we may see the exterior flying motions of a Bird by the help of its wings, but they cannot give us an informa­tion of the productive and figurative motions of all the interior parts of a Bird, and what makes it to be such a Creature, no more then the exterior view of a mans [Page 43] head, arms, legs, &c. can give an Information of his interior Parts, viz. the spleen, liver, lungs, &c. Also in Vegetables; although those sorts of Vegetables which are outwardly burning may be outwardly pointed, and they that are hot and burning within may be inwardly pointed, yet no Microscope is able to present to our view those inward points by the inspection of the exte­rior figure and shape of those Vegetables: Neither doth it follow, that all those which are outwardly point­ed, must needs be of a hot and burning nature, except they be also pointed inwardly. Nay although some particular Creatures should seem to resemble each o­ther in their exterior shapes and figures so much as not to be distinguished at the first view, yet upon better ac­quaintance we shall find a great difference betwixt them; which shews that there is more variety and dif­ference amongst Natures works, then our weak senses are able to perceive; nay, more variety in one parti­cular Creature, as for example, in Man, then all the kind or sort of that Creature, viz. Mankind, is able to know. And if there be such difference betwixt the ex­terior figures of Creatures of one sort, what may there be betwixt their exterior shapes and interior natures? Nevertheless, although there be such variety, not one­ly in the General kinds of Creatures, but in every Particular, yet there is but one ground or principle of all this variety, which is self-motion, or self-moving Matter. And I cannot enough admire the strange [Page 44] conceits of some men, who perceiving and be­lieving such a curious variety and various curiosity of Nature in the parts of her body, and that she is in a perpetual motion, and knows best her own Laws, and the several proprieties of bodies, and how to adapt and fit them to her designed ends, nay, that God hath implanted a faculty of knowing in every Creature, do yet deny, nay, rail against Natures self-moving power, condemning her as a dull, inanimate, sense­less and irrational body, as if a rational man could con­ceive, that such a curious variety and contrivance of natural works should be produced by a senseless and irational motion; or that Nature was full of immate­rial spirits, which did work Natural matter into such various figures; or that all this variety should be cau­sed by an Immaterial motion, which is generated out of nothing, and annihilated in a moment; for no man can conceive or think of motion without body, and if it be above thought, then surely it is above act. But I rather cease to wonder at those strange and irregular opinions of Man-kind, since even they themselves do justifie and prove the variety of Nature; for what we call Irregularities in Nature, are really nothing but a variety of Natures motions; and therefore if all mens conceits, fancies and opinions were rational, there would not be so much variety as there is. Con­cerning those that say, there is no variety in the Ele­mental Kingdom, as Air, Water, and Earth; Air [Page 45] and Water having no form at all, unless a potentiality to be formed into globules, and that the clods and parcels of Earth are all Irregular. I answer, This is more then Man is able to know: But by reason their Microscopes cannot make such Hermaphroditical fi­gures of the Elements, as they can of Minerals, Ve­getables and Animals, they conclude there is no such variety in them; when as yet we do plainly perceive that there are several sorts of Air, Fire, Water, Earth, and no doubt but these several sorts, and their parti­culars, are as variously figured as other Creatures: Truly it is no consequence to deny the being of that which we do not see or perceive; for this were to at­tribute a Universal and Infinite knowledg to our weak and imperfect senses. And therefore I cannot be­lieve, that the Omnipotent Creator has written and engraven his most mysterious Designs and Counsels onely in one sort of Creatures; since all parts of Nature, their various productions and curious contrivances, do make known the Omnipotency of God, not onely those of little, but also those of great sizes; for in all figures, sizes and actions is apparent the curious va­riety of Nature, and the Omnipotency of the Cre­tor, who has given Nature a self-moving power to produce all these varieties in her self; which varieties do evidently prove, that Nature doth not work in all Creatures alike: nor that she has but one Primary or Principal sort of motions by which she produces all [Page 46] Creatures, as some do conceive the manner of wreath­ing and unwreathing, which they have observed in the beard of a Wild-oat, mentioned before, to be the first foot step of sensation and animate motion, and the most plain, simple and obvious contrivance Nature has made use of to produce a motion next to that of rare­faction and condensation by heat and cold; for this is a very wild and extravagant conceit, to measure the in­finite actions of Nature according to the rule of one particular sort of motions, which any one that has the perfect use of his sense and reason may easily see, and therefore I need not to bring many arguments to con­tradict it.

16. Of the Providence of Nature, and of some Opi­nions concerning Motion.

COncerning those that speak of the Providence of Nature, & the preserving of Vegetables, to wit, that Nature is very curious and careful in preserving their se­minal principles, and lays them in most convenient, strong and delicate cabinets for their safer protection from outward danger: I confess, Nature may make such pro­tections, that one Creature may have some defence from the injuries and assaults of its fellow-Creatures; but these assaults are nothing but dissolving motions, as friendly and amiable associations are nothing else but composing motions; neither can any thing be lost in [Page 47] Nature, for even the least particle of Nature remains as long as Nature her self. And if there be any Pro­vidence in Nature, then certainly Nature has know­ledg and wisdom; and if she hath knowledg and wis­dom, then she has sense and reason; and if sense and reason, then she has self-motion; and if Nature has self-motion, then none of her parts can be called inani­mate or soul-less: for Motion is the life and soul of Na­ture, and of all her parts; and if the body be animate, the parts must be so too, there being no part of the animate body of Nature that can be dead, or without motion; whereof an instance might be given of animal bodies, whose parts have all animal life, as well as the body it self: Wherefore those that allow a soul, or an inform­ing, actuating and animating form or faculty in Nature and her parts, and yet call some parts inanimate or soul-less, do absolutely contradict themselves. And those that say, all the varieties of Nature are produced, not by self-motion, but that one part moves another, must at last come to something that moves it self: be­sides, it is not probable, that one part moving another, should produce all things so orderly and wisely as they are in Nature. But those that say Motion is no sub­stance, and consequently not material, and yet allow a generation and annihilation of Motion, speak, in my opinion, non-sence: for first, how can self-motion, the Author and Producer of all things, work all the va­rieties that are in Nature, and be nothing it self? Next, [Page 48] how can that which is nothing (for all that is not Ma­terial is nothing in Nature, or no part of Nature) be generated and annihilated? Nay, if Motion be Ma­terial, as surely it is, yet there can neither be a new generation, nor an annihilation of any particular Mo­tion in Nature; for all that is material in Nature has its being in and from Infinite Matter, which is from Eternity, it being impossible that any other new Mat­ter should be created besides this Infinite Matter out of which all natural things consist, or that any part of this matter should be lost or annihilated. But perhaps those that believe new generations and annihilations of particular motions, may say, that their opinion is not as if those particular Motions were generated out of some new matter, but that the matter of such motions is the same with the matter of all other natural Creatures, and that their perishing or annihilation is not an utter destruction or loss of their being out of Nature, but onely of being such or such a motion, like as some Ve­getables and Elements are generated and perish in one night: Truly, if their meaning be thus, then it were better to name it an alteration or change of Motion, rather then a new Generation, and a Perishing or Annihilation. But my intention is not to plead for other mens opinions, but rather to clear my own, which is, that Motion is material; for Figure, Mo­tion and Matter are but one thing; and that no particular Motion is or can be lost in Nature, nor [Page 49] created anew; as I have declared more at large else­where.

17. Des Cartes Opinion of Motion examined.

I Cannot well apprehend what Des Cartes means, by Matter being at first set a moving by a strong and lively action, and by his extraordinary swift rotation or whirling motion about the Center; as also by the sha­vings of his aethereal subtil Matter which fill'd up all vacuities and pores, and his aethereal globules; I would ask whether this kind of motion did still continue; if so, then not onely the rugged and uneven parts, but also the aethereal globules would become less by this continual rotation, and would make this world a very weak, dizzie, and tottering world; and if there be any such shaving and lessening, then according to his prin­ciples there must also be some reaction, or a reacting and resisting motion, and then there would be two op­posite motions which would hinder each other. But I suppose he conceived, that Nature, or the God of Nature, did produce the world after a Mechanical way, and according as we see Turners, and such kind of Artificers work; which if so, then the Art of Turn­ing is the prime and fundamental of all other Mecha­nical Arts, and ought to have place before the rest, and a Turner ought to be the prime and chief of all Me­chanicks, and highly esteemed; but alas! that sort of [Page 50] people is least regarded; and though by their turning Art they make many dusty shavings, yet they get but little profit by them; for all they get is by their se­veral wooden figures they make, as Spoons, Ladles, Cups, Bowls, Trenchers, and the like, and not by their shavings. Wherefore as all other Mechanicks do not derive their Arts from Turners, so neither is it probable, that this world and all natural Creatures are produced by a whirling Motion, or a spherical ro­tation, as if some spirits were playing at Bowls or Foot­ball; for as I have often mentioned, Nature has in­finite ways of Motions, whereof none is prime or prin­cipal, but self-motion, which is the producer of all the varieties Nature has within her self. Next, as for his Opinion of transferring and imparting Motion to o­ther bodies, and that that body which imparts Motion to another body, loses as much as it gives, I have an­swer'd in my Philosophical Letters; to wit, that it is most improbable, by reason Motion being material and inseparable from Matter, cannot be imparted with­out Matter; and if not, then the body that receives Motion would increase in bulk, and the other that lo­ses Motion would decrease, by reason of the addition and diminution of the parts of Matter, which must of necessity increase and lessen the bulk of the body, the contrary whereof is sufficiently known.

18. Of the blackness of a Charcoal, and of Light.

I Cannot in reason give my consent to those Dioptri­cal Writers, who conceive that the blackness of a Charcoal proceeds from the Porousness of its parts, and the absence of light, viz. that light, not being reflected in the Pores of a Charcoal, doth make it obscure, and consequently appear black; for the opinion which holds that all Colours are caused by the various reflexi­on of Light, has but a weak and uncertain Ground, by reason the refraction or reflection of light is so in­constant, as it varies and alters continually; and there being so many reflexions and positions of Light, if they were the true cause of Colours, no Colour would ap­pear constantly the same, but change variously, ac­cording to the various reflexion of Light; whereas, on the contrary, we see that natural and inherent Colours continue always the same, let the position and reflection of Light be as it will; besides, there being different co­loured Creatures, if all had the same position and re­flexion of light, they would not appear of divers, but all of one colour, the contrary whereof is proved by experience. I will not say, but the refraction and va­rious position of light may vary and alter a natural and inherent colour exteriously so, as to cause, for exam­ple, a natural blew to appear green, or a natural green to appear red, &c. but those figures which [Page 52] light makes, being but superficially and loosely spread upon other natural and substantial figures, are so uncer­tain, inconstant and momentary, that they do change according as the reflexion and position of light alters; and therefore they cannot cause or produce any natural or inherent colours, for these are not superficial, but fixt, and remain constantly the same. And as for blackness, that it should be caused by the absence of light, I think it to be no more probable, then that light is the cause of our sight; for if the blackness of a Charcoal did proceed from the absence of light in its pores, then a black Horse would have more or deeper pores then a white one, or a sorrel, or any other co­loured Horse; also a black Moor would have larger Pores then a man of a white complexion; and black Sattin, or any black Stuff, would have deeper pores then white Stuff: But if a fair white Lady should bruise her arm, so as it did appear black, can any one believe that light would be more absent from that bruised part then from any other part of her arm that is white, or that light should reflect otherwise upon that bruised part, then on any other? Also can any body believe, that the reflexion of light on a decayed Ladies face, should be the cause that her complexion is altered from what it was when she was young, and appeared beauti­ful and fair? Certainly Light is no more the cause of her Complexion then of her Wrinkles, or else she would never complain of Age, but of Light. But to [Page 53] prove further, that the entering of light into the pores of exterior bodies, can neither make perception nor colours; if this were so, then the entering of light into the pores of the Eye, would make it perceive all things of as many colours as a Rain-bow hath: besides, if several Eyes should have several shaped Pores, none would agree in the perception of the colour of an ex­terior object, or else it would so dazle the sight, as no object would be truly perceived in its natural colour; for it would breed a confusion between those reflexi­ons of light that are made in the pores of the eye, and those that are made in the pores of the object, as being not probable they would agree, since all pores are not just alike, or of the same bigness; so as what with Air, Light, Particles, and Pores jumbled together, and thrust or crowded into so small a compass, it would make such a confusion and Chaos of colours, as I may call it, that no sight would be able to discern them; wherefore it is no more probable that the per­ception of sight is caused by the entering of light into the pores of the Eye, then that the perception of smoak is caused by its entrance into the Eye: And I wonder rational men do believe, or at least conceive Natures actions to be so confused and disordered, when as yet sense and reason may perceive that Na­ture works both easily and orderly, and therefore I ra­ther believe, that as all other Creatures, so also light is patterned out by the corporeal figurative and percep­tive [Page 54] motions of the optick sense, and not that its percepti­on is made by its'entrance into the eye, or by pressure and reaction, or by confused mixtures, by reason the way of Patterning is an easie alteration of parts, when as all o­thers are forced and constrained, nay, unsetled, inconstant and uncertain; for how should the fluid particles of air and light be able to produce a constant and setled effect, being so changeable themselves, what instances soever of Geometrical figures be drawn hither to evince it? if Man knew Natures Geometry, he might perhaps do something, but his artificial figures will never find out the architecture of Nature, which is beyond his per­ception or capacity. But some may object, That nei­ther colour, nor any other object can be seen or per­ceived without light, and therefore light must needs be the cause of colours, as well as of our optick percep­tion. To which I answer, Although we cannot re­gularly see any other bodies without light, by reason darkness doth involve them, yet we perceive darkness and night without the help of light. They will say, We perceive darkness onely by the absence of light. I an­swer, If all the Perception of the optick sense did come from light, then the Perception of night or darkness would be no perception at all, which is a Paradox, and contrary to common experience, nay, to sense and reason, for black requires as much Perception as white, and so doth darkness and night. Neither could we say, it is dark, or it is night, if we did not perceive it to be [Page 55] so, or had no perception at all of it: The truth is, we perceive as much darkness as we do light, and as much black as we do white; for although darkness doth not present to our view other objects, so as light doth, but con­ceals them, yet this doth not infer that darkness is not per­ceived; for darkness must needs do so, by reason it is opposite to light, and its corporeal figurative motions are quite contrary to the motions of light, and there­fore it must also of necessity have contrary effects; wherefore the error of those that will not allow dark­ness to be a corporeal figurative motion, as well as light, but onely a privation or absence of light, cannot make it nothing; but it is on the contrary well known, that darkness has a being as well as light has, and that it is something, and not nothing, by reason we do per­ceive it; but he that perceives, must needs perceive some­thing, for no perception can be of nothing: besides, I have declared elsewhere, that we do see in dreams, and that mad men see objects in the dark, without the help of light: which proves, it is not the presence or enter­ing of light into the eye, that causes our seeing, nor the absence of light, which takes away our optick Per­ception, but light onely doth present exterior objects to our view, so as we may the better perceive them. Neither is a colour lost or lessened in the dark, but it is onely concealed from the ordinary perception of humane sight; for truly, if colours should not be colours in the dark, then it might as rationally be said, that a man's [Page 56] flesh and blood is not flesh and blood in the dark, when it is not seen by a humane eye: I will not say, that the smalness and fineness of parts may not make colours appear more glorious; for colours are like arti­ficial Paintings, the gentler and finer their draughts and lines are, the smoother and glossier appear their works; but smalness and fineness is not the true cause of colours, that is, it doth not make colours to be co­lours, although it makes colours fine. And thus black is not black through the absence of Light, no more then white can be white by the presence of light; but blackness is one sort of colour, whiteness ano­ther, redness another, and so of the rest: Whereof some are superficial and changeable, to wit, such as are made by the reflection of light, others fixt and in­herent, viz. such as are in several sorts of Minerals, Vegetables and Animals; and others again are pro­duced by Art, as by Dying and Painting; which Ar­tists know best how to order by their several mix­tures.

19. Of the Pores of a Charcoal, and of Emptiness.

ALthough I cannot believe, that the absence of Light in the Pores of a Charcoal is the cause of its blackness; yet I do not question the truth of its Pores: for that all, or most Creatures have Pores, I have declared before; which Pores are nothing else [Page 57] but passages to receive and discharge some parts of matter; and therefore the opinion of those that believe an entering of some Particles of exterior bo­dies through the Pores of animal Creatures, and an intermixing with their interior parts; as that, for ex­ample, in the bathing in Mineral Waters, the liquid and warm vehicles of the Mineral Particles, do by degrees insinuate themselves into the pores of the skin, and in­termix with the inner parts of the body, is very ratio­nal; for this is a convenient way of conveighing exte­terior parts into the body, and may be effectual either to good or bad; and although the pores be very small, yet they are numerous, so that the number of the pores supplies the want of their largeness. But yet although Pores are passages for other bodies to issue or enter, ne­vertheless they are not empty, there being no such thing as an emptiness in Nature; for surely God, the fulness and Perfection of all things, would not suffer any Va­cuum in Nature, which is a Pure Nothing; Va­cuum implies a want and imperfection of something, but all that God made by his All-powerful Command, was good and perfect; Wherefore, although Char­coals and other bodies have Pores, yet they are fill'd with some subtile Matter not subject to our sensitive per­ception, and are not empty, but onely call'd so, by reason they are not fill'd up with some solid and gross substance perceptible by our senses. But some may say, if there be no emptiness in Nature, but all fulness of body, or [Page 58] bodily parts, then the spiritual or divine soul in Man, which inhabits his body, would not have room to reside in it. I answer, The Spiritual or Divine Soul in Man is not Natural, but Supernatural, and has also a Super­natural way of residing in man's body; for Place be­longs onely to bodies, and a Spirit being bodiless, has no need of a bodily place. But then they will say, That I make Spirit and Vacuum all one thing, by reason I de­scribe a Spirit to be a Natural Nothing, and the same I say of Vacuum; and hence it will follow, that parti­cular Spirits are particular Emptinesses, and an Infinite Spirit an Infinite Vacuum. My answer is, That al­though a Spirit is a Natural nothing, yet it is a Super­natural something; but a Vacnum is a Pure nothing, both Naturally and Supernaturally; and God forbid I should be so irreligious, as to compare Spirits, and consequently God, who is an Infinite Spirit, to a Va­cuum; for God is All-fulfilling, and an Infinite Ful­ness and Perfection, though not a Corporeal or Mate­rial, yet a Supernatural, Spiritual, and Incompre­hensible fulness; when as Vacuum, although it is a cor­poreal word, yet in effect or reality is nothing, and expresses a want or imperfection, which cannot be said of any supernatural Creature, much less of God.

20. Of Colours.

ALthough the sensitive perception doth pattern out the exterior figure of Colours, as easily as of any other object, yet all perceptions of Colours are not made by Patterning; for as there are many perceptions which take no patterns from outward objects, so there are also perceptions of Colours which never were pre­sented to our sensitive organs: Neither is any percep­tion made by exterior objects, but by interior corpo­real figurative motions; for the object doth not print or act any way upon the eye, but it is the sensitive motions in the eye which pattern out the figure of the object: and it is to be observed, that as the parts of some bodies do consist of several different figures, which the learned call Heterogeneous, one figure being included within another; and some again, their parts are but of one kind of figure, which they call Homogeneous bodies, as for example, Water: so it may be with Colours; for some, their parts may be quite thorow of one co­lour, and others again, may be of several colours; and indeed, most Creatures, as they have different parts, so those different parts have also different colours; and as those parts do alter, so do their colours: For exam­ple, a Man that is in good health, looks of a sanguine complexion, but being troubled with the Yellow or black Jaundies, his complexion is of the colour of the hu­mor; [Page 60] either black, or yellow; yet it doth not proceed always from the over-flowing of the humor towards the exterior parts; for many times, when the humor is obstructed, it will cause the same effect; but then the corporeal motions in the extream parts alter by way of Imitation or Metamorphosing, as from a sanguine colour into the colour of the predominant humor: Wherefore it is no more wonder to see colours change in the tempering of Steel (as some are pleased to alledg this experiment) then to see Steel change and rechange its temper from being hard to soft, from tough to brittle, &c. which changes prove, that colours are material as well as steel, so that the alteration of the corporeal parts, is the alteration of the corporeal figures of colours. They also prove, that Light is not essential to colours; for although some colours are made by se­veral Reflexions, Refractions and Positions of Light, yet Light is not the true and natural cause of all co­lours; but those colours that are made by light, are most inconstant, momentany and alterable, by reason light and its effects are very changeable: Neither are colours made by a bare motion, for there is no such thing as a bare or immaterial Motion in Nature; but both Light and Colours are made by the corporeal fi­gurative motions of Nature; and according to the va­rious changes of those Motions, there are also various and different Lights and Colours; and the perception of light and Colours is made and dissolved by the sensitive [Page 61] figurative motions in the optick sensorium, without the exchange of exterior objects; but as the slackest, loo­sest or rarest parts are of least solid or composed corpo­real figures, so are they most apt to change and re­change upon the least disorder, as may well be ob­served in colours raised by Passions, as fear, anger, or the like, which will change not onely the complexion and countenance, but the very features will have some alteration for a short time, and many times the whole body will be so altered, as not to be rightly com­posed again for a good while; nay, often there fol­lows a total dissolution of the whole figure, which we call death. And at all this we need not wonder, if we do but consider that Nature is full of sense and reason, that is, of sensitive and rational perception, which is the cause that oftentimes the disturbance of one part causes all other parts of a composed figure to take an alarum; for, as we may observe, it is so in all other composed bodies, even in those composed by Art; as for example, in the Politick body of a Common­wealth, one Traytor is apt to cause all the Kingdom to take armes; and although every member knows not particularly of the Traytor, and of the circumstances of his crime, yet every member, if regular, knows its particular duty, which causes a general agreement to assist each other; and as it is with a Common-wealth, so it is also with an animal body; for if there be facti­ons amongst the parts of an animal body, then straight [Page 62] there arises a Civil War. Wherefore to return to Colours; a sudden change of Colours may cause no wonder, by reason there is oftentimes in Nature a sud­den change of parts, that is, an alteration of figures in the same parts: Neither is it more to be admired, that one colour should be within another, then one figura­tive part is within another; for colours are figurative parts; and as there are several Creatures, so there are also several Colours; for the Colour of a Creature is as well corporeal as the Creature it self; and (to ex­press my self as clearly as I can) Colour is as much a body as Place and Magnitude, which are but one thing with body: wherefore when the body, or any corpo­real part varies, whether solid or rare; Place, Magni­tude, Colour, and the like, must of necessity change or vary also; which change is no annihilation or pe­rishing, for as no particle of Matter can be lost in Na­ture, nor no particular motion, so neither can Colour; and therefore the opinion of those, who say, That when Flax or Silk is divided into very small threads, or fine parts, those parts lose their colours, and being twisted, regain their colours, seems not conformable to Truth; for the division of their parts doth not destroy their colours, nor the composing of those parts regain them; but they being divided into such small and fine parts, it makes their colours, which are the finest of their exterior parts, not to be subject to our optick per­ception; for what is very small or rare, is not subject [Page 63] to the humane optick sense; wherefore there are these following conditions required to the optick perception of an exterior object: First, The object must not be too subtil, rare, or little, but of a certain degree of mag­nitude; Next, It must not be too far distant, or without the reach of our sight; then the medium must not be obstructed, so as to hinder our perception; And lastly, our optick sensorium must be perfect, and the sensitive motions regular; of which conditions, if any be wanting, there is either no perception at all, or it is an imperfect perception; for the perception of seeing an exterior object, is nothing else but a patterning out of the figure of that same object by the sensitive figurative and perceptive motions; but there are infinite parts that are beyond our humane perception, and it would be but a folly for us to deny that which we cannot see or perceive; and if the perceptive motions be not regu­lar in our optick sense, we may see different colours in one object; nay, the corporeal figurative motions in the eye may make several figurative colours, even with­out the patterns of outward objects; and as there are several colours, so there are also several corporeal figu­rative motions that make several colours in several parts; and the more solid the parts are, the more fixt are their inherent natural colours: But superficial co­lours are more various, though not so various as they would be, if made by dusty Atomes, flying about as Flies in Sun-shine; for if this opinion were true, all co­lours, [Page 64] and other Creatures would be composed or made by chance, rather then by reason, and chance being so ignorantly inconstant, not any two parts would be of the like colour, nor any kind or species would be pre­served; but Wise Nature, although she be full of va­riety, yet she is also full of reason, which is knowledg; for there is no part of Nature that has not sense and rea­son, which is life and knowledg; and if all the infinite parts have life and knowledg, Infinite Nature cannot be a fool or insensible: But mistake me not, for I do not mean, that her parts in particular are infinitely know­ing, but I say Infinite Nature hath an Infinite know­ledg; and by reason Nature is material, she is divide­able as well as composeable, which is the cause that there is an obscurity in her Parts, in particular, but not in general, that is, in Nature her self; nay, if there were not an obscurity in the Particulars, men would not endeavour to prove inherent and natural figures by su­perficial Phaenomena's. But as for Colour, some do mention the example of a blind man, who could dis­cover colours by touch; and truly I cannot account it a wonder, because colours are corporeal figurative mo­tions, and touch being a general sence, may well per­ceive by experience (which is gained by practice) some Notions of other sensitive perceptions; as for example, a blind man may know by relation the several touches of Water, Milk, Broth, Jelly, Vinegar, Vitriol, &c. as well as what is hot, cold, rare, dense, hard, soft, [Page 65] or the like; and if he have but his touch, hearing, speaking and smelling, perfectly, he may express the several knowledges of his several senses by one parti­cular sense, or he may express one senses knowledg by another; but if the senses be imperfect, he cannot have a true knowledg of any object. The same may be said of Colours; for several Colours being made by several corporeal figurative motions, may well be perceived by a general sense, which is Touch: I will not say, that touch is the principle of all sensitive know­ledg, for then I should be of the opinion of those Ex­perimental Philosophers, which will have one principal motion or figure to be the cause of all Natural things; but I onely say, animal touch may have some Notion of the other animal senses by the help of rational per­ception: all which proves, that every part is sensible, and every sense knowing, not onely in particular, but that one sense may have some general notion or know­ledg of the rest; for there are particular and general perceptions in sensitive and rational matter, which is the cause both of the variety and order of Nature's Works; and therefore it is not necessary, that a black figure must be rough, and a white figure smooth: Neither are white and black the Ground-figures of Colours, as some do conceive, or as others do imagine, blew and yellow; for no particular fi­gure can be a principle, but they are all but effects; and I think it is as great an error to believe Effects [Page 66] for Principles, as to judg of the Interior Natures and Motions of Creatures by their Exterior Phaenome­na or appearances, which I observe in most of our mo­dern Authors, whereof some are for Incorporeal Mo­tions, others for Prime and Principal Figures, others for First Matter, others for the figures of dusty and in­sensible Atomes, that move by chance: when as nei­ther Atomes, Corpuscles or Particles, nor Pores, Light, or the like, can be the cause of fixt and natural co­lours; for if it were so, then there would be no stayed or solid colour, insomuch, as a Horse, or any other Creature, would be of more various colours then a Rain-bow; but that several colours are of several fi­gures, was always, and is still my opinion, and that the change of colours proceeds from the alteration of their figures, as I have more at large declared in my other Philosophical Works: Indeed Art can no more force certain Atomes or Particles to meet and join to the making of such a figure as Art would have, then it can make by a bare command Insensible Atomes to join in­to a Uniform World. I do not say this, as if there could not be Artificial Colours, or any Artificial Ef­fects in Nature; but my meaning onely is, that al­though Art can put several parts together, or divide and disjoyn them, yet it cannot make those parts move or work so as to alter their proper figures or interior na­tures, or to be the cause of changing and altering their own or other parts, any otherwise then they are by their [Page 67] Natures. Neither do I say, that no Colours are made by Light, but I say onely, that fixt colours are not made by Light; and as for the opinion, that white bodies reflect the Light outward, and black bodies in­ward, as some Authors do imagine; I answer, 'Tis probable, some bodies may do so, but all white and black Colours are not made by such reflexions; the truth is, some conceive all Colours to be made by one sort of Motion, like as some do believe that all sensa­tion is made by pressure and reaction, and all heat by parts tending outward, and all cold by parts tending inward; when as there are not onely several kinds of heat and cold, as Animal, Vegetable, Mineral and Elemental heat and cold, but several sorts in each kind, and different particulars in each sort; for there is a moist heat, a dry heat, a burning, a dissolving, a composing, a dilating, a contracting heat, and ma­ny more: The like for colds; all which several kinds, sorts and particulars, are made by the several changes of the corporeal figurative Motions of Nature, and not by Pressure and Reaction, or by tending inward and outward. And as there is so great a variety and difference amongst natural Creatures, both in their Perceptions and interior natures, so there are also varieties of their colours, the natural colours of men being different from the natural colours of Beasts, Birds, Fish, Worms, Flies, &c. Concerning their interior Natures, I'le al­ledg but few examples; although a Peacock, Parrot, Pye, [Page 68] or the like, are gay Birds, yet there is difference in their Gayety: Again; although all men have flesh and blood, and are all of one particular kind, yet their in­terior natures and dispositions are so different, as seldom any two men are of the same complexion; and as there is difference in their complexions, so in the exterior shapes and features of their exterior parts, in so much as it is a wonder to see two men just alike; nay, as there is difference in the corporeal parts of their bodies, so in the corporeal parts of their minds, according to the old Proverb, So many Men, so many Minds: For there are different Understandings, Fancies, Con­ceptions, Imaginations, Judgments, Wits, Memo­ries, Affections, Passions, and the like. Again: as in some Creatures there is difference both in their ex­terior features and interior natures, so in others there is found a resemblance onely in their exterior, and a difference in their interior parts; and in others again, a resemblance in their interior, and a difference in their exterior parts; as for example, black Ebony, and black Marble, are both of different natures, one being Wood, and the other Stone, and yet they resemble each other in their exterior colour and parts; also, white, black, and gray Marble, are all of one interior Na­ture, and yet to differ in their exterior colour and parts: The same may be said of Chalk and Milk, which are both white, and yet of several natures; as also of a Turquois, and the Skie, which both appear of one co­lour, [Page 69] and yet their natures are different: besides, there are so many stones of different colours, nay, stones of one sort, as for example, Diamonds, which appear of divers colours, and yet are all of the same Nature; also Man's flesh, and the flesh of some other animals, doth so much resemble, as it can hardly be distinguish­ed, and yet there is great difference betwixt Man and Beasts: Nay, not onely particular Creatures, but parts of one and the same Creature are different; as for example, every part of mans body has a several touch, and every bit of meat we eat has a several taste, witness the several parts, as legs, wings, breast, head, &c. of some Fowl; as also the several parts of Fish, and other Creatures. All which proves the Infinite variety in Nature, and that Nature is a perpetually self-moving body, dividing, composing, changing, forming and transforming her parts by self-corporeal figurative mo­tions; and as she has infinite corporeal figurative mo­tions, which are her parts, so she has an infinite wis­dom to order and govern her infinite parts; for she has Infinite sense and reason, which is the cause that no part of hers is ignorant, but has some knowledg or o­ther, and this Infinite variety of knowledg makes a ge­neral Infinite wisdom in Nature. And thus I have declared how Colours are made by the figurative cor­poreal motions, and that they are as various and diffe­rent as all other Creatures, and when they appear ei­ther more or less, it is by the variation of their parts. [Page 70] But as for the experiment of Snow, which some do alledg, that in a darkned room, it is not perceived to have any other light then what it receives, doth not prove that the whiteness of Snow is not an inherent and natural co­lour, because it doth not reflect light, or because our eye doth not see it, no more then we can justly say, that blood is not blood, or flesh is not flesh in the dark, if our eye do not perceive it, or that the interior parts of Nature are colourless, because the exterior light makes no re­flexion upon them. . Truly, in my judgment, those opinions, that no parts have colour, but those which the light reflects on, are neither probable to sense nor reason; for how can we conceive any corporeal part without a colour? In my opinion, it is as impossible to imagine a body without colour, as it is impossible for the mind to conceive a natural immaterial substance; and if so pure a body as the mind cannot be colour­less, much less are grosser bodies. But put the case all bodies that are not subject to exterior light were black as night, yet they would be of a colour, for black is as much a colour as green, or blew, or yellow, or the like; but if all the interior parts of Nature be black, then, in my opinion, Nature is a very sad and melancholy Lady; and those which are of such an opinion, surely their minds are more dark then the interior parts of Nature; I will not hope that clouds of dusty Atomes have obscured them. But if not any Creature can have imagination without figure and colour, much less [Page 71] can the optick sensitive parts; for the exterior sensitive parts are more gross then the rational, and therefore they cannot be without colour, no more then without figure: and although the exterior parts of Animals are subject to our touch, yet the countenances of those se­veral exterior parts are no more perceptible by our touch, then several colours are: By Countenances, I mean the several exterior postures, motions, or ap­pearances of each part; for as there is difference betwixt a face, and a countenance; (for a face remains constant­ly the same, when as the countenance of a face may and doth change every moment; as for example, there are smiling, frowning, joyful, sad, angry countenances, &c.) so there is also a difference between the exterior figure or shape of a Creature, and the several and various mo­tions, appearances or postures of the exterior parts of that Creatures exterior figure, whereof the former may be compared to a Face, and the later to a Coun­tenance. But leaving this nice distinction; If any one should ask me, Whether a Barbary-horse, or a Gennet, or a Turkish, or an English-horse, can be known and distinguished in the dark? I answer: They may be distinguished as much as the blind man (whereof men­tion hath been made before) may discern colours, nay, more; for the figure of a gross exterior shape of a body may sooner be perceived, then the more fine and pure countenance of Colours. To shut up this my dis­course of Colours, I will briefly repeat what I have [Page 72] said before, viz. that there are natural and inherent colours which are fixt and constant, and superficial colours, which are changeable and inconstant, as al­so Artificial colours made by Painters and Dyers, and that it is impossible that any constant colour should be made by inconstant Atomes and various lights. 'Tis true, there are streams of dust or dusty Atomes, which seem to move variously, upon which the Sun or light makes several reflections and refractions; but yet I do not see, nor can I believe, that those dusty particles and light are the cause of fixt and inherent colours; and therefore if Experimental Philosophers have no fir­mer grounds and principles then their Colours have, and if their opinions be as changeable as inconstant Atomes, and variable Lights, then their experiments will be of no great benefit and use to the world. Nei­ther will Artificial Characters and Geometrical Fi­gures be able to make their opinions and experiments more probable; for they appear to me like Dr. Dee's numbers, who was directed by I know not what spirits, which Kelley saw in his holy stone, which nei­ther of them did understand; much less will Dioptri­cal glasses give any true Information of them, but they rather delude the sight; for Art is not onely intricate and obscure, but a false informer, and rather blinds then informs any particular Creature of the Truth of Nature: but my reason perceives that Nature loves sometimes to act or work blind-fold in the actions of [Page 73] Art; for although they be natural, yet they are but Natures blind, at least her winking or jugling acti­ons, causing some parts or Creatures to deceive others, or else they are her politick actions by which she de­ceives her Creatures expectations, and by that means keeps them from knowing and understanding her sub­tile and wise Government.

21. Whether an Idea haue a Colour, and of the Idea of a Spirit.

I Have declared in my former discourse, that there is no Colour without body, nor a body with­out colour, for we cannot think of a body without we think of colour too. To which some may ob­ject, That if colour be as proper to a body as matter, and if the mind be corporeal, then the mind is also coloured. I answer, The Mind, in my opini­on, has as much colour as other parts of Nature. But then perhaps they will ask me, what colour the Mind is of? My answer is, That the Mind, which is the rational part of Nature, is no more subject to one co­lour, then the Infinite parts of Nature are subject to one corporeal figurative motion; for you can no more confine the corporeal mind to a particular com­plexion, then you can confine Infinite matter to one particular colour, or all colours to one particular figure. Again, they may ask, Whether an Idea have a [Page 74] colour? and if so, whether the Idea of God be colour­ed? To which I answer, If the Ideas be of corporeal finite figures, they have colours according to the na­ture, or property, or figure of the original; but as for the Idea of God, it is impossible to have a corporeal Idea of an infinite incorporeal Being; for though the finite parts of Nature may have a perception or know­ledg of the existence of God, yet they cannot possibly pattern or figure him, he being a Supernatural, Immate­rial, and Infinite Being: But put the case (although it is very improbable, nay, against sense and reason) there were natural immaterial Idea's, if those Idea's were finite, and not infinite, yet they could not possibly express an infinite, which is without limitation, by a finite figure which hath a Circumference. Some may say, An Immaterial Idea hath no Circumference. But then I answer, It is not a finite Idea, and it is impossible for an Idea to be Infinite: for I take an Idea to be the pi­cture of some object, and there can be no picture with­out a perfect form; neither can I conceive how an im­material can have a form, not having a body; where­fore it is more impossible for Nature to make a picture of the Infinite God, then for Man, which is but a part of Nature, to make a picture of infinite Nature; for Nature being material, has also a figure and matter, they being all one, so that none can be without the o­ther, no more then Nature can be divided from her self. Thus it is impossible for Man to make a figure, [Page 75] or picture of that which is not a part of Nature; for pictures are as much parts of Nature, as any other parts, nay, were they monstrous, as we call them; for Nature being material, is also figurative, and being a self-moving matter or substance, is divideable, and composeable; and as she hath infinite corporeal figu­rative motions, and infinite parts, so she hath infinite figures, of which some are pictures, others originals; and if any one particular Creature could picture out those infinite figures, he would picture out Nature; but Nature being Infinite, cannot be pictured or patterned by any finite and particular Creature, although she is material; nevertherless she may be patterned in parts: And as for God, He being individeable and immaterial, can neither be patterned in part, nor in whole, by any part of Nature which is material, nay, not by infinite Nature her self: Wherefore the notions of God can be no otherwise but of his existence, to wit, that we know there is something above Nature, who is the Author and God of Nature; for though Nature hath an infi­nite natural knowledg of the Infinite God, yet being divideable as well as composeable, her parts cannot have such an infinite knowledg or perception; and being composeable as much as divideable, no part can be so ignorant of God, as not to know there is a God. Thus Nature hath both an infinite and finite perceptions; in­finite in the whole, as I may say for better expressions sake, and finite in parts. But mistake me not, I do [Page 76] not mean, that either the infinite perception of Nature, or the finite perceptions of natural parts and Creatures, are any otherwise of that supernatural and divine being then natural; but yet they are the most purest parts, being of the rational part of Nature, moving in a most elevating and subtile manner, as making no exact fi­gure or form, because God hath neither form nor fi­gure; but that subtile matter or corporeal perceptive motion patterns out onely an over-ruling power, which power all the parts of Nature are sensible of, and yet know not what it is; like as the perception of Sight see­eth the ebbing and flowing of the Sea, or the motion of the Sun, yet knows not their cause; and the perception of Hearing hears Thunder, yet knows not how it is made; and if there be such ignorance of the corporeal parts of Nature, what of God? But to conclude, my opinion is, That as the sensitive perception knows some of the other parts of Nature by their effects, so the rati­onal perceives some effects of the Omnipotent power of God; which effects are perceptible by finite Crea­tures, but not his Infinite Nature, nor Essence, nor the cause of his Infiniteness and Omnipotency. Thus although Gods Power may be perceived by Natures parts, yet what God is, cannot be known by any part: and Nature being composeable, there is a general ac­knowledgment of God in all her parts; but being also divideable, it is the cause there are particular Religions, and opinions of God, and of his divine Worship and Adoration.

22. Of Wood Petrified.

I Cannot admire, as some do, that Wood doth turn into stone, by reason I observe, that Slime, Clay, Dirt, nay Water, may and doth often the same, which is further off from the nature of Stone then Wood is, as being less dense, and its interior figurative motions being dilating: but yet this doth not prove that all other Creatures may as easily be metamorphosed into stone as they; for the parts of water are composed but of one sort of figure, and are all of the same nature; and so is wood, clay, shells, &c. whose parts are but of one figure, at least not of so many different fi­gures as the parts of Animals, or other Creatures; for as Animals have different parts, so these parts are of different figures, not onely exteriously, but interi­cusly; as for example, in some or most Animals there are Bones, Gristles, Nerves, Sinews, Muscles, Flesh, Blood, Brains, Marrow, Choler, Phlegme, and the like; besides, there are several sorts of flesh, witness their interior and exterior parts, as the Heart, Lungs, Liver, Spleen, Guts, and the like; as also the Head, Breast, Armes, Body, Legs, and the like: all which would puzzle and withstand the power of Ovid's Me­tamophosing of Gods and Goddesses. Wherefore it is but a weak argument to conclude, because some Crea­tures or parts can change out of one figure into another [Page 78] without a dissolution of their composed parts, therefore all Creatures can do the like; for if all Creatures could or should be metamorphosed into one sort of figure, then this whole World would perhaps come to be one Stone, which would be a hard World: But this Opi­nion, I suppose, proceeds from Chymistry; for since the last Art of Chimystry (as I have heard) is the Production of glass, it makes perhaps Chymists believe, that at the last day, when this Word shall be dissolved with Fire, the Fire will calcine or turn it into Glass: A brittle World indeed! but whether it will be transpa­rent, or no, I know not, for it will be very thick.

23. Of the Nature of Water.

THe Ascending of VVater in Pipes, Pumps, and the like Engines, is commonly alledged as an ar­gument to prove there is no Vacuum: But, in my opi­nion, VVater, or the like things that are moist, liquid and wet, their interior corporeal and natural motion is flowing, as being of a dilating figure; and when other parts or Creatures suppress those liquors, so that they cannot rise, they will dilate; but when solid and heavy bodies are put into them as Stones, Metals, &c. which do sink, then they will rise above them, as being their nature to over-flow any other body, if they can have the better of it, or get passage: For concerning the [Page 79] floating of some bodies, the reason is not so much their levity or porousness, but both their exterior shape, and the waters restlesness or activity, the several parts of water endeavouring to drive those floating bodies from them; like as when several men playing at Ball, or Shittle-cock, or the like, endeavour to beat those things from and to each other; or like as one should blow up a feather into the Air, which makes it not onely keep up in the air, but to wave about: The like doth water with floating bodies; and the lighter the floating parts are, the more power have the liquid parts to force and thrust them about. And this is also the reason why two floating bodies of one Nature endeavour to meet and joyn, because by joyning they receive more strength to resist the force of the watry parts: The same may be said when as floating bodies stick or join to the sides of Vessels; but many times the watry parts will not suffer them to be at rest or quiet, but drive them from their strong holds or defences. Concerning the suppression of water, and of some floating bodies in wa­ter by air or light, as that air and light should suppress water, and bodies floating upon it (as some do con­ceive) I see no reason to believe it; but the con­trary rather appears by the levity of air, which is so much lighter, and therefore of less force then either the floating bodies, or the water on which they float. Some again are of opinion, That Water is a more dense bo­dy then Ice, and prove it by the Refractions of light, [Page 80] because VVater doth more refract the rays of light then Ice doth: but whatsoever their experiments be, yet my reason can hardly believe it; for although Ice may be more transparent then water, yet it may be more dense then water: for Glass is more transparent then water, and yet more dense then water; and some bo­dies will not be trasparent if they be thick, that is, if they have a great number of parts upon parts, when as they will be transparent if they be thin, that is, if they have few thin parts upon each other; so that transparent bodies may be darkned, and those that are not transparent of themselves, may be made so by the thickness or thinness of parts, that one may see or not see through them; and thus a thin body of Water, may be more transparent then a thick body of Ice, and a thin body of Ice may be more transparent then a thick body of water. As for the expansion of Water, it doth not prove, that Wa­ter is more dense then Ice, but on the contrary, it rather proves, that it is more rare; for that body whose parts are close and united, is more dense then that whose parts are fluid and dilating. Neither doth Expansion alter the interior nature of a body, any more then con­traction, but it alters onely the exterior posture; as for example, when a man puts his body into several postures, it doth not alter him from being a man, to some other Creature, for the stretching of his legs, spreading out of his armes, puffing up his cheeks, &c. changes his nature, or natural figure, no more then [Page 81] when he contracts his limbs close together, crumpling up his body, or folding his armes, &c. but his posture is onely changed; the like for the expansions and contra­ctions of other sorts of Creatures. Nor can I readily give my assent to their opinion, that some liquors are more dense then others; I mean such as are perfectly moist, liquid and wet, as water is; for there be numerous sorts of liquors, which are not throughly wet as water; and although their Circular lines may be different, as some edged, some pointed, some twisted, and the like; yet they do not differ so much, but that their inherent fi­gures are all of Circular lines; for the interior nature or figure of water, and so of all other moist and wet li­quors, is Circular: and it is observable, that as Art may be an occasion of diminishing those points or edges of the Circular lines of some liquors, or of untwisting them; so it may also be an occasion that some liquid and wet bodies may become so pointed, edged, twisted, &c. as may occasion those circles to move or turn into such or such exterior figures, not onely into triangular, square, round, and several other forms or figures, as appears in Ice, Hail, Frost, and flakes of Snow, but in­to such figures as they name Spirits; which several sorts of figures belonging all to one sort of Creatures, may cause several refractions, reflections and inflections of the rayes of light. Wherefore Mechanicks may very much be mistaken concerning the truth of the interior Nature of bodies, or natural Creatures, by [Page 82] judging them onely according to their exterior fi­gures.

24. Of Salt, and of Sea- or Salt-water.

THe reason, why Salt is made, or extracted out of Salt-water, is, that the Circular lines of Sea- or Salt-water, are pointed exteriously, but not interiously, which is the cause that the saltish parts may be easily di­vided from those watry lines; and it is to be observed, that those points when joyned to the watry circles, are rare, but being once separated, either by Art, or a more natural way, by some sorts of dividing motions, they become more dense; yet not so dense, but they may melt or return again into the first figure, which is a rare figure, and so become liquid salt, and after­wards they may be densed or contracted again; for there is no other difference between dry and liquid salt, but what is made by the rarity or density of those sorts of points. As for that sort of Salt, which is named vo­latile, it is when some of those rare points become more dilated or rarified, then when they are joyned to the watry circle-lines; I say some, not all; for as some points do condense or contract into fixt salt, so others do dilate or arise into volatile salt. But perchance some will say, How can there be several sorts of points, since a point is but a point? I answer; There may very well be several sorts, considering the Nature of [Page 83] their substance; for some sorts are rare, some dense, some contracting, some dilating, some retenting, &c. besides, all points are not alike, but there is great diffe­rence amongst several pointed figures, for all are not like the point of a Pin or Needle, but (to alledg some gross examples) there be points of Pyramids, points of Knives, points of Pins, points of the flame of a Candle, and numerous other sorts, which are all several points, and not one like another; for I do not mean a Mathe­matical or imaginary point, such as is onely made by the rational matter in the mind, (although even a­mongst those imaginary points there is difference; for you cannot imagine, or think of the several pointed fi­gures of several sorts or kinds of Creatures, or parts, but you will have a difference in your mind) but I mean pointed figures, and not single points. It is also to be observed, that as some watry Circles will and may have points outwardly, so some have also points inwardly; for some watry Circles, as I have menti­oned in my Philosophical Opinions, are edged, to wit, such as are in vitriol water; others pointed, as those in salt water; and others are of other sorts of points, as those in cordial or hot waters; but those last are more artificial; and all these are different in their sorts or kinds, although a litttle difference in their own natures may appear great in our humane perception. Concern­ing Oyl, there is also difference between Oyl and other wet bodies; for Oyl, although it be rare, liquid and [Page 84] moist, yet we cannot say, it is absolutely that which we name wet, as other liquors are, viz. Water and Wine, or natural juices; and since the interior natural figure of oyl is burning and hot, it is impossible to divide those interior fiery points from the circle figure of Oyl with­out dissolving those liquid circle lines. But as the Penetrations of other acid and salt liquors are caused by their exterior points, so oyl, whose points are interi­ously in the circle-lines, cannot have such quick ef­fects of penetration as those that are exteriously point­ed: But mistake me not, I do not mean such exterior parts as are onely subject to our humane perception, but such as cause those Creatures or parts to be of such a figure or nature.

25. Of the Motions of Heat and Cold.

THose which affim that Heat and Cold are the two primary and onely causes of the Productions of all natural things, do not consider sufficiently the variety of Nature, but think that Nature produces all by Art; and since Art is found out and practised by Man, Man conceits himself to be above Nature; But as neither Art, nor any particular Creature can be the cause or principle of all the rest, so neither can heat and cold be the prime cause of all natural productions, no more then paint can produce all the parts of a man's face, as the Eyes, Nose, Forehead, Chin, Cheeks, [Page 85] Lips and the like, or a [...] can produce a na­tural Head, or a suit of Clothes can make the body of Man, for then whensoever the fashioned Garments or Mode-dresses do change, men would of necessity change also; but Art causes gross mistakes and errors, not onely in sensitive, but also in rational perceptions; for sense being deluded, is apt to delude Reason also, especially if Reason be too much indulgent to sense; and therefore those judgments that rely much upon the perception of sense, are rather sensitive then rational judgments; for sense can have but a perception of the exterior figures of objects, and Art can but alter the out­ward form or figure, but not make or change the in­terior nature of any thing; which is the reason that artificial alterations cause false, at least uncertain and va­rious judgments, so that Nature is as various in mens judgments, as in her other works. But concerning heat and cold, my opinion is, that they are like several Colours, some Natural, and some Artificial; of which the Artificial are very inconstant, at least not so lasting as those that are not made by Art; and they which say, that both heat and cold are not made by the sensories or sensitive organs, are in the right, if their mean­ing be that both heat and cold in their natures and with all their proprieties, as they are particular Creatures, are not made or produced by humane or animal senses; nevertheless the sensitive animal perception of heat and cold is made by the sensitive motions in their sensitive [Page 86] organs, for what heat and cold soever an animal Crea­ture feels, the perception of it is made in the sense of touch, or by those sensitive motions in the parts of its body; for as the perception of any other outward ob­ject is not made by a real entrance of its parts into our sensories, so neither is all perception of heat and cold made by the intermixture of their particles with our flesh, but they are patterned and figured out by the sensitive motions in the exterior parts of the body as well as other objects: I will not say, that cold or heat may not enter and intermix with the parts of some bodies, as fire doth intermix with fuel, or enters into its parts; but my meaning is, that the animal perception of heat and cold is not made this way, that is, by an intermix­ture of the parts of the Agent with the parts of the Pa­tient, as the learned call them; that is, of the exterior ob­ject, and the sentient; or else the perception of all ex­terior objects would be made by such an intermixture, which is against sense and reason; and therefore even in such a commixture, where the parts of the object enter into the body of the sentient, as fire doth into fuel, the perception of the motions of fire in the fuel, and the fuels consumption or burning, is not made by the fire, but by the fuels own perceptive motions, imitating the motions of the fire; so that fire doth not turn the fuel into ashes, but the fuel doth change by its own corpo­real figurative motions, and the fire is onely an occa­sion of it: The same may be said of Cold. Neither is [Page 87] every Creatures perception alike, no more then it can be said, that one particular Creature, as for example Man, hath but one perception; for the perception of sight and smelling, and so of every sence, are diffe­rent; nay, one and the same sense may have as many several perceptions as it hath objects, and some sorts of peceptions in some Creatures, are either stronger or weaker then in others; for we may observe, that in one and the same degree of heat or cold, some will have quicker and some slower perceptions then others; for example in the perception of touch, if several men stand about a fire, some will sooner be heated then others; the like for Cold, some will apprehend cold weather sooner then others, the reason is, that in their percep­tion of Touch, the sensitive motions work quicker or slower in figuring or patterning out heat or cold, then in the perception of others. The same may be said of other objects, where some sentient bodies will be more sensible of some then of others, even in one and the same kind of perception. But if in all perceptions of cold, cold should intermix with the bodies of ani­mals, or other Creatures, like as several Ingredients, then all bodies upon the perception of cold would dis­solve their figures, which we see they do not; for al­though all dissolving motions are knowing and percep­tive, because every particular motion is a particular knowledg and perception, yet not every perception re­quires a dissolution or change of its figure: 'Tis true, [Page 88] some sorts or degrees of exterior heat and cold may oc­casion some bodies to dissolve their interior figures, and change their particular natures, but they have not power to dissolve or change all natural bodies. Nei­ther doth heat or cold change those bodies by an inter­mixture of their own particles with the parts of the bo­dies, but the parts of the bodies change themselves by way of imitation, like as men put themselves into a mode-fashion, although oftentimes the senses will have fashions of their own, without imitating any other ob­jects; for not all sorts of perceptions are made by Imi­tation or patterning, but some are made voluntarily, or by rote; as for example, when some do hear and see such or such things without any outward objects. Where­fore it is not certain steams, or agitated particles in the air, nor the vapours and effluviums of exterior objects, insinuating themselves into the pores of the sentient, that are the cause of the Perception of Heat and Cold, as some do imagine; for there cannot probably be such differences in the pores of animal Creatures of one sort, as for example of Men, which should cause such a different perception as is found in them; for al­though exterior heat or cold be the same, yet several animals of the same sort will have several and different perceptions of one and the same degrees of exterior heat and cold, as above mentioned; which difference would not be, if their perception was caused by a real entrance of hot and cold particles into the pores of their bodies: [Page 89] Besides, Burning-Fevers and Shaking-Agues, prove that such effects can be without such exterior causes. Nei­ther can all sorts of Heat and Cold be expressed by Wind, Air and Water, in Weather-glasses; for they being made by Art, cannot give a true information of the Generation of all natural heat and cold; but as there is great difference between Natural and Artificial Ice, Snow, Colours, Light, and the like; so be­tween Artificial and Natural Heat and Cold; and there are so many several sorts of heat and cold, that it is impossible to reduce them all to one certain cause or principle, or confine them to one sort of Motions, as some do believe that all sorts of Heat and Cold are made by motions tending inward and outward, and others, that by ascending and descending, or rising and depressing motions, which is no more probable, then that all Colours are made by the reflexion of Light, and that all White is made by reflecting the beams of light outward, and all black by reflecting them inward; or that a Man when he is on Horse-back, or upon the top of an House, or Steeple, or in a deep Pit or Mine, should be of another figure then of the figure and na­ture of man, unless he were dissolved by death, which is a total alteration of his figure; for neither Gravity nor Levity of Air, nor Almospherical Pillars, nor a­ny Weather-glasses, can give us a true information of all natural heat and cold, but the several figurative cor­poreal motions, which make all things in Nature, do [Page 86] also make several sorts of heat and cold in several sorts of Creatures. But I observe experimental Philoso­phers do first cry up several of their artificial Instru­ments, then make doubts of them, and at last disap­prove them, so that there is no trust nor truth in them, so much as to be relied on; for it is not an age, since Weather-glasses were held the onely divulgers of heat and cold, or change of weather, and now some do doubt they are not such infallible Informers of those truths; by which it is evident, that Experimental Phi­losophy has but a brittle, inconstant and uncertain ground, and these artificial Instruments, as Micro­scopes, Telescopes, and the like, which are now so highly applauded, who knows, but may within a short time have the same fate, and upon a better and more rational enquiry, be found deluders rather then true Informers. The truth is, there's not any thing that has and doth still delude most mens understandings more, then that they do not consider enough the vari­ety of Natures actions, and do not imploy their reason so much in the search of natures actions, as they do their senses, preferring Art and Experiments before Reason, which makes them stick so close to some par­ticular opinions, and particular sorts of Motions or Parts, as if there were no more Motions, Parts, or Creatures in Nature, then what they see and find out by their Artificial Experiments.

Thus the variety of Nature is a stumbling-block to [Page 87] moft men, at which they break their heads of under­standing, like blind men that run against several posts or walls; and how should it be otherwise, since Na­tures actions are Infinite, and Mans understanding fi­nite? for they consider not so much the interior Na­tures of several Creatures, as their exterior figures and Phonomena's, which makes them write many Para­doxes, but few Truths, supposing that Sense and Art can onely lead them to the knowledg of truth, when as they delude rather their judgments instead of inform­ing them. But Nature has placed Sense and Reason together, so that there is no part or particle of Nature which has not its share of reason as well as of sense; for every part having self-motion, hath also knowledg, which is sense and reason, and therefore it is fit we should not onely imploy our senses, but chiefly our reason in the search of the causes of natural effects; for Sense is onely a workman, and Reason is the de­signer and surveigher, and as reason guides and directs, so ought sense to work. But seeing that in this age, sense is more in fashion then reason, it is no wonder there are so many irregular opinions and judgments a­mongst men; However, although it be the mode, yet I for my part shall not follow it, but leaving to our Moderns their Experimental or Mode-Philosophy built upon deluding Art, I shall addict my self to the study of Contemplative-Philosophy, and Reason shall be my guide. Not that I despise sense or sensitive [Page 92] knowledg, but when I speak of sense, I mean the per­ception of our five exterior senses, helped (or rather deluded) by Art and Artificial instruments; for I see that in this present Age, Learned men are full of Art and Artificial trials, and when they have found out something by them, they presently judg that all na­tural actions are made the same way; as for example, when they find by Art that Salt will make Snow con­geal into Ice, they instantly conclude from thence that all natural congelations are made by saline parti­cles, and that the Primum Frigidum, or the Principal cause of all natural cold must needs be salt, by reason they have found by Art that salt will do the same ef­fect in the aforesaid commixture with Snow. But how grosly they are deceived, rational men may judg: If I were a Chymist, and acknowledged their com­mon Principles, I might perchance have some belief in it, but not whilest I follow reason; nay, I perceive that oftentimes our senses are deluded by their own ir­regularities, in not perceiving always truly and right­ly the actions of Art, but mistaking them, which is a double error; and therefore that particular sensitive knowledg in man which is built meerly upon artificial experiments, will never make him a good Philoso­pher, but regular sense and reason must do it, that is, a regular sensitive and rational inquisition into the va­rious actions of Nature; For put the case a Micro­scope be true concerning the magnifying of an [Page 93] exterior object, but yet the magnitude of the object cannot give a true information of its interior parts, and their motions, or else great and large bodies would be interiously known even without Microscopes: The truth is, our exterior senses can go no further then the exterior figures of Creatures, and their exterior acti­ons, but our reason may pierce deeper, and consider their inherent natures and interior actions; and al­though it do sometimes erre, (for there can be no perfect or universal knowledg in a finite part con­cerning the Infinite actions of Nature) yet it may also probably guess at them, and may chance to hit the Truth. Thus Sense and Reason shall be the ground of my Philosophy, and no particular natural effects, nor artificial instruments; and if any one can shew me a bet­ter and surer ground or Principle then this, I shall most willingly and joyfully embrace it.

26. Of the Measures, Degrees, and different sorts of Heat and Cold.

SOme Experimental Philosophers are much inqui­sitive into the measures of Heat and Cold; and as we have setled standards for weight and magnitude, and time, so they endeavour to measure the varying temperature, and gradual differences of heat and cold; but do what they can, their artificial measures or weights neither will nor can be so exact as the [Page 94] natural are, to wit, so as not to make them err in more or less: Neither is it possible, that all the degrees of heat and cold in Nature can be measured; for no man can measure what he doth not know, and who knows all the different sorts of heats and colds? Nay, if man did endeavour to measure onely one sort of heat or cold, as for example, the degrees of the heat or cold­ness of the air, how is it possible that he should do it, by reason of the continual change of the motions of heat or cold of the air, which are so inconstant, that it were surer to measure the fluidity of the air, then to mea­sure the degrees of heat or cold of the air; for the tem­per of the air and of its heat and cold, may vary so, as many times we shall never find the same measure a­gain. Wherefore if we desire to have some knowledg of the degrees of some sorts of heat or cold, my opi­nion is, that we may more easily attain to it by the help of rational perception, then by a sensitive inspe­ction of artificial Weather-glasses, or the like; for reason goes beyond sense; and although the sensitive perception is best next the rational, yet the rational is above the sensitive. But some of the learned conceive the degrees of heat and cold are made by bare divisions, whenas, in my opinion, they are made by the several degrees of their corporeal figurative motions: They do also imagine, that there's no degree but must ascend from one, to two; from two, to three; and so forth through all numbers: and that from one to twenty, [Page 95] there be so many degrees as there be numbers; when as, in my opinion, there's no more but one degree re­quired from one to a Million, or more; for though both in Nature and Art there are degrees from one sin­gle figure to another, yet there may also be but one de­gree from one to a million, without reckoning any intermediate degrees or figures: so that a body, when it moves quick or slow, needs not to go through all the intermediate degrees of quickness or slowness, as to move quicker and quicker, slower and slower; but may immediately move from a very slow, to a very quick degree: the truth is, no man is able to measure the infinite degrees of natural motions; for though Na­ture consists of particular finites, yet it doth also consist of infinite particulars; finite in figure, infinite in num­ber; and who can number from finite to infinite? But having discoursed hereof elsewhere, I return to heat and cold, aud let others dispute whether the degrees of heat and cold in the air, be the same with the degrees of animal perceptions, or with the degrees of animal cold and heat; my opinion is, that there being several sorts, and several particular heats and colds, they cannot be just alike each other, but there's some difference betwixt them; as for example, there are shaking, freezing, chilly, windy, numb, stiff, rare, dense, moist, dry, contracting, dilating, ascending, descending, and o­ther numerous sorts of colds; nay, there are some sorts of candied figures made by heat, which appear as if [Page 96] they were frozen: Also there are fluid colds which are not wet, as well as fluid heats that are not dry; for Phlegm is fluid, and yet not wet; and some sorts of air are fluid, and not wet; I say some, not all; for some are hot and moist, others hot and dry. The same may be said of some sorts of heat and cold; for some are moist, and some dry; and there may be at one and the same time a moist cold in the air, and a dry cold in water; which, in my opinion, is the reason that in sealed Weather-glasses, according to some Experimenters re­lations, sometimes the air doth not shrink, but rather seems to be expanded when the weather grows colder, and that the water contracts; not that the cold contra­ction of water causes an expansion of the air to prevent a Vacuum; for there cannot be any such thing as a Va­cuum in Nature; but that there is a moist cold in the air, and a dry cold in the water, whereof the dry cold causes a contraction, and the moist cold an expansion; nay, there is often a moist and dry cold in the air at one and the same time; so that some parts of the air may have a moist cold, and the next adjoying parts a dry cold, and that but in a very little compass; for there may be such contractions and dilations in Nature, which make not a hairs breadth difference, Nature being so subtil and curious, as no particular can trace her ways; and therefore when I speak of contractions and dilati­ons, I do not mean they are all such gross actions per­ceptible by our exterior senses as the works of Art, but [Page 97] such as the curiosity of Nature works. Concerning the several sorts of animal heat and cold, they are quite different from the Elemental, and other sorts of heat and cold; for some men may have cold fits of an Ague under the Line, or in the hottest Climates; and others Burning-Feavers under the Poles, or in the coldest climates. 'Tis true, that Animals, by their perceptions, may pattern out the heat or cold of the air, but these perceptions are not always regular or per­fect; neither are the objects at all times exactly pre­sented as they should, which may cause an obscurity both in Art, and in particular sensitive perceptions, and through this variety the same sort of Creatures may have different perceptions of the same sorts of heat and cold. Besides it is to be observed, that some parts or Creatures, as for example, Water, and the like li­quors, if kept close from the perception either of heat or cold, will neither freeze, nor grow hot; and if Ice and Snow be kept in a deep Pit, from the exterior ob­ject of heat, it will never thaw, but continne Ice or Snow, whenas being placed near the perception of the Sun, Fire, or warm Air, its exterior figure will alter from being Ice to Water, and from being cold to hot, or to an intermediate temper betwixt both; nay, it may alter from an extream degree of cold to an extream degree of heat, according as the exterior object of heat doth occasion the sensitive perceptive motions of Water or Ice to work; for extreams are [Page 98] apt to alter the natural temper of a particular Creature, and many times so as to cause a total dissolution of its in­terior natural figure; (when I name extreams, I do not mean any uttermost extreams in Nature; for Na­ture being Infinite, and her particular actions being poised and ballanced by opposites, can never run into extreams; but I call them so in reference onely to our perception, as we use to say, it is extream hot, or ex­tream cold) And the reason of it is, that Water by its natural perceptive motions imitates the motions of heat or cold, but being kept from the perception of them, it cannot imitate them. The same reason may be given upon the experiment, that some bodies being put into water, will be preserved from being frozen or congealed; for they being in water, are not onely kept from the perception of cold, but the water doth as a guard preserve them; which guard, if it be overcome, that is, if the water begin to freeze, then they will do so too. But yet all colds are not airy, nor all heats sunny or fiery; for a man, as I mentioned before, may have shaking fits of an Ague in the hottest climate, or season, and burning fits of a Fever in the coldest cli­mate or season; and as there is difference between ele­mental and animal cold and heat, so betwixt other sorts; so that it is but in vain to prove all sorts of heat and cold by Artificial Weather-glasses, suppressions and eleva­tions of water, Atmosphaerical parts, and the like; for it is not the air that makes all cold, no not that cold [Page 99] which is called Elementary, no more then it makes heat; but the corporeal, figurative, self-moving, per­ceptive, rational and sensitive parts of Nature, which make all other Creatures, make also heat and cold. Some Learned make much ado about Antiperistasis, and the flight of those two contrary qualities, heat and cold, from each other; where, according to their opi­nion, one of them being surrounded and besieged by the other, retires to the innermost parts of the body which it possesses, and there by recollecting its forces, and a­nimating it self to a defence, is intended or increased in its degree, and so becomes able to resist its adversary; which they prove by the cold expelled from the Earth, and Water by the Sun-beams, which they say retires to the middle region of the Air, and there defends it self against the heat that is in the two other, viz. the upper, and the lower Regions; and so it doth in the Earth; for, say they, we find in Summer, when the air is sultry hot, the cold retreats into Cellars and Vaults, and in Winter when the air is cold, they are the Sanctuary and receptacle of heat; so that the water in wells and springs, and the like places under ground, is found warm and smoaking, when as the water which is expo­sed to the open air, by cold is congealed into Ice. But whatsoever their opinion be, I cannot believe that heat and cold run from each other as Children at Boe-peep; for concerning the Earths being warm in Winter, and cold in Summer, it is not, in my opinion, caused by [Page 100] hot or cold Atoms, flying like Birds out of their nests, and returning to the same; nor is the Earth like a Store­house, that hoards up cold and heat at several seasons in the year, but there is a natural temper of cold and heat as well in the Earth, as in other Creatures; and that Vaults, Wells, and Springs under ground, are warm in Winter, when the exterior air is cold; the reason is, not that the heat of the air, or the Calorifick atomes, as they call them, are retired thither to defend themselves from the coldness of the air; but they being so deep in the Earth where the cold cannot enter, are kept from the perception of cold, so as they cannot imitate so well the motions of cold as other Creatures that are exposed to the open air. The like may be said of the heat of the Sun in Summer, which cannot pene­trate deeper into the bowels of the Earth then cold can. The truth is, the Earth is to them like an Umbrello, which defends or keeps men from the Sun, rain, wind, dust, &c. but although it defends them from the heat of the Sun, or coldness of wind, yet they have those qua­lities naturally within themselves, sometimes more, and sometimes less: and so has the Earth its natural temper of heat and cold; But what Umbrello the middle regi­on has, whether it be some Planet, or any thing else, I am not able to determine, unless I had been there and observed it; nay, ten to one but I might even then have been mistaken. Wherefore all the contentions and disputes about the doctrine of Antiperistasis, are, in my [Page 101] judgment, to little purpose, since we are not able to know all the differences of heat and cold; for if men con­ceive there is but one heat and cold in Nature, they are mistaken; and much more if they think they can measure all the several sorts of heat and cold in all Crea­tures by artificial experiments; for as much as a Na­tural man differs from an artificial statue or picture of a man, so much differs a natural effect from an artifici­al, which can neither be so good, nor so lasting as a na­tural one: If Charles's Wain, the Axes of the Earth, and the motions of the Planets, were like the pole, or axes, or wheels of a Coach, they would soon be out of order. Indeed artificial things are pretty toys to imploy idle time; nay, some are very useful for our conveni­ency, but yet they are but Natures bastards or change­lings, if I may so call them; and though Nature takes so much delight in variety, that she is pleased with them, yet they are not to be compared to her wise and funda­mental actions; for Nature, being a wise and provi­dent Lady, governs her parts very wisely, methodi­cally and orderly; also she is very industrious, and hates to be idle, which makes her imploy her time as a good Huswife doth, in Brewing, Baking, Churning, Spinning, Sowing, &c. as also in Preserving for those that love Sweet-meats, and in Distilling for those that take delight in Cordials; for she has numerous imploy­ments, and being infinitely self-moving, never wants work, but her artificial works are her works of delight, [Page 102] pleasure and pastime: Wherefore those that imploy their time in Artificial Experiments, consider onely Natures sporting or playing actions; but those that view her wise Government, in ordering all her parts, and consider her changes, alterations and tempers in parti­culars, and their causes, spend their time more usefully and profitably; and truly to what purpose should a man beat his brains, and weary his body with labours about that wherein he shall lose more time, then gain knowledg? But if any one would take delight in such things, my opinion is, that our female sex would be the fittest for it, for they most commonly take pleasure in making of Sweet-meats, Possets, several sorts of Pyes, Puddings, and the like; not so much for their own eat­ing, as to imploy their idle time; and it may be, they would prove good Experimental Philosophers, and in­form the world how to make artificial Snow by their Creams or Possets beaten into froth, and Ice by their clear, candied or crusted quiddinies or conserves of fruits; and Frost by their candied herbs and flowers; and Hail by their small comfits made of water and sugar with whites of Eggs; and many other the like figures which resemble Beasts, Birds, Vegetables, Mine­rals, &c. But the men should study the causes of those Experiments, and by this society the Commonwealth would find a great benefit; for the Woman was given to Man not onely to delight, but to help and assist him; and I am confident, Women would labour as much [Page 103] with Fire and Furnace as Men, for they'l make good Cordials and Spirits; but whether they would find out the Philosophers-stone, I doubt; for our sex is more apt to waste, then to make Gold; however, I would have them try, especially those that have means to spend; for who knows but Women might be more happy in finding it out, then Men, and then would Men have reason to imploy their time in more profi­table studies, then in useless Experiments.

27. Of Congealation and Freezing.

THe Congelation of Water into Ice, Snow, Hail, and the like, is made by its own corporeal figu­rative motions, which upon the perception of the ex­terior object of cold, by the way of imitation, do con­tract and condense water into such or such a figure. Some are of opinion, that Water, or the like liquors, are not contracted, but expanded or rarified by freez­ing; which they prove both by the levity of congealed Water, and the breaking of Glasses, Earthen Bottles, or other the like Vessels in which water is contained when it freezes: But although I' mentioned in my for­mer discourse, that there are several sorts of colds, as for example, moist and dry colds, whereof these con­tract and condense, those dilate and rarifie; so that there are cold dilations, as well as cold contractions; yet Freezing or Congelation being none of the sorts [Page 104] of moist, but of dry colds; it is not made by expand­ing or dilating, but by contracting and condensing motions; for, that liquid bodies when frozen are more extended, 'tis not the freezing motions that cause those extensions; but water being of a dilative nature, its interior parts strive against the exterior, which figu­rative motions do imitate the motions of cold, or frost, and in that strife the water becomes extended or dilated, when congealed into Ice: But the question is, Whether solid bodies do dilate or extend when they freeze? and my opinion is they do not; for that solid bodies, as Metal, and the like, are apt to break in a hard frost, doth not prove an expansion, but the division of their parts is rather made by contraction; for though the motions of cold in metal are not so much exteriously contracting as to be perceived by our optick sense, in its bulk or exterior magnitude, as they are in the body of water, whose interior nature is dilative; yet by the division which cold causes, it may well be believed, that freezing hath an interior contractive effect, other­wise it could not divide so as many times it doth; Wherefore I believe that solid bodies break by an ex­tream and extraordinary contraction of their interior parts, and not by an extraordinary expansion. Be­sides this breaking shews a strong self-motion in the action of congealing or freezing, for the motions of cold are as strong and quick as the motions of heat: Nay, even those Experimental Philosophers which [Page 105] are so much for expansion, confess themselves that wa­ter is thicker and heavier in Winter then in Summer; and that Ships draw less water, and that the water can bear greater burdens in Winter then in Summer; which doth not prove a rarefaction and expansion, but rather a contraction and condensation of water by cold: They likewise affirm, that some spirituous liquors of a mixt nature, will not expand, but on the contrary, do vi­sibly contract in the act of freezing. Concerning the levity of Ice, I cannot believe it to be caused by expan­sion; for expansion will not make it lighter, but 'tis onely a change of the exterior shape or figure of the body; Neither doth Ice prove Light, because it will float a­bove water; for a great Ship of wood which is very heavy, will swim, when as other sorts of bodies that are light and little, will sink. Nor are minute bubbles the cause of the Ice's levity, which some do conceive to stick within the Ice, and make it light; for this is but a light and airy opinion, which has no firm ground; and it might as well be said that airy bubles are the cause that a Ship keeps above water; but though wind and sails make a Ship swim faster, yet they will not hinder it from sinking. The truth is, the chief cause of the levity or gravity of bodies, is quantity of bulk, shape, purity and rarity, or grosness and den­sity, and not minute bubles, or insensible atomes, or pores, unless porous bodies be of less quantity in wa­ter, then some dense bodies of the same magnitude. And [Page 106] thus it is the Triangular figure of Snow that makes it light, and the squareness that makes Ice heavier then Snow; for if Snow were porous, and its pores were fill'd with atomes, it would be much heavier then its principle, Water. Besides, It is to be observed, that not all kind of Water is of the same weight, by reason there are several sorts of Circle-lines which make wa­ter; and therefore those that measure all water alike, may be mistaken; for some Circle-lines may be gross, some fine, some sharp, some broad, some pointed, &c. all which may cause a different weight of water. Wherefore freezing, in my opinion, is not caused by rarifying and dilating, but by contracting, condensing and retenting motions: and truly if Ice were expanded by congelation, I would fain know, whether its ex­pansions be equal with the degrees of its hardness; which if so, a drop of water might be expanded to a great bigness; nay, if all frozen liquors should be inlarged or extended in magnitude, according to the strength of the freezing motions, a drop of water at the Poles would become, I will not say a mountain, but a very large body. Neither can rarefaction, in my o­pinion, be the cause of the Ice's expansion; for not all rarified bodies do extend; and therefore I do rather believe a clarefaction in Ice, then a rarefaction, which are different things. But some may object, That hot and swelling bodies do dilate, and diffuse heat and scent without an expansion of their substance. I answer, [Page 107] That is more then any one is able to prove: the truth is, when a fiery-coal, and an odoriferous body cast heat and scent (as we use to say) 'tis not that they do really and actually expand or dilate heat or scent without bo­dy, for there can be no such thing as an immaterial heat or scent: neither can Nothing be dilated or expanded, but both heat and scent being one thing with the hot and smelling body, are as exterior objects patterned out by the sensitive motions of the sentient body, and so are felt and smelt, not by an actual emission of their own parts, or some heating and smelling atomes, or an immaterial heat and smell, but by an imitation of the perceptive motions in the sentient subject. The like for cold; for great shelves or mountains of Ice, do not expand cold beyond their icy bodies; but the air patterns out the cold, and so doth the perception of those Sea­men that sail into cold Countries; for it is well to be observed, that there is a stint or proportion in all natures corporeal figurative motions, to wit, in her particulars, as we may plainly see in every particular sort or species of Creatures, and their constant and orderly producti­ons; for though particular Creatures may change into an infinite variety of figures, by the infinite variety of natures corporeal figurative motions, yet each kind or sort is stinted so much as it cannot run into extreams, nor make a confusion, although it makes a distinguish­ment between every particular Creature even in one and the same sort. And hence we may conclude, that [Page 108] Nature is neither absolutely necessitated, nor has an absolute free-will; for she is so much necessitated, that she depends upon the All-powerfull God, and can­not work beyond her self, or beyond her own nature; and yet hath so much liberty, that in her particulars she works as she pleaseth, and as God has given her power; but she being wise, acts according to her in­finite natural wisdom, which is the cause of her or­derly Government in all particular productions, changes and dissolutions, so that all Creatures in their particular kinds, do move and work as Nature pleases, orders and directs; and therefore, as it is impossible for Nature to go beyond her self; so it is likewise im­possible that any particular body should extend be­yond it self or its natural figure. I will not say, that heat or cold, or other parts and figures of Nature, may not occasion other bodies to dilate or extend; but my meaning is, that no heat or cold can extend without body, or beyond body, and that they are figured and patterned out by the motions of the sentient, which imitating or patterning motions of the sentient body cannot be so perfect or strong as the original motions in the object it self. Neither do I say, that all parts or bodies do imitate, but some, and at some times there will be more Imitators then at others, and sometimes none at all; and the imitations are according as the imi­tating or patterning parts are disposed, or as the object is presented. Concerning the degrees of a visible [Page 109] expansion, they cannot be declared otherwise then by the visibly extended body, nor be perceived by us, but by the optick sense: But, mistake me not, I do not mean, that the degrees of heat and cold can onely be perceived by our optick sense, but I speak of bodies vi­sibly expanded by heat and cold; for some degrees and sorts of heat and cold are subject to the humane per­ception of sight, some to the perception of touch, some to both, and some to none of them; there being so ma­ny various sorts and degrees both of heat and cold, as they cannot be altogether subject to our grosser exte­rior senses, but those which are, are perceived, as I said, by our perception of sight and touch; for although our sensitive perceptions do often commit errors and mistakes, either through their own irregularity, or some other ways; yet next to the rational, they are the best informers we have; for no man can naturally go beyond his rational and sensitive perception. And thus, in my opinion, the nature of Congelation is not effect­ed by expanding or dilating, but contracting and con­densing motions in the parts of the sentient body, which motions in the congelation of water do not alter the in­terior nature of water, but onely contract its exterior figure into the figure either of Ice, Snow, Hail, Hoar­frost, or the like, which may be proved by their return into the former figure of water, whensoever they dis­solve; for wheresoever is a total change, or alteration of the interior natural motions of a Creature, when [Page 110] once dissolved, it will never regain its former figure; and therefore although the exterior figures of con­gealed water are various and different, yet they have all but one interior figure, which is water, into which they return as into their principle, whensoever they change their exterior figures by dissolving and dilating motions; for as a laughing and frowning countenance doth not change the nature of a man, so neither do they the nature of water. I do not speak of artificial, but of natural congealed figures, whose congelation is made by their own natural figurative motions; But although all congelations are some certain kind of motions, yet there may be as many particular sorts of congelations, as there are several sorts of frozen or congealed bodies; for though I name but one figure of Snow, another of Ice, another of Hail, &c. yet I do not deny, but there may be numerous particular sorts and figures of Ice, Snow, Hail, &c. all which may have their several freezing or congealing motions; nay, freezing in this respect may very well be compared to burning, as be­ing opposite actions; and as there are various sorts of burning, much differing from each other, so there are of freezing; for although all burning is of the nature of fire, yet not all burning is an elemental fire; for ex­ample, Lime, and some Vegetables, and other Crea­tures have burning effects, and yet are not an Elemen­tal fire: neither doth the Sun and ordinary fire burn just alike. The same may be said of Freezing; and I [Page 111] observe, that fluid and rare parts are more apt to freeze, then solid and dense bodies; for I do not believe all sorts of metal can freeze, so as water, or watery liquors, unless they were made liquid. I will not say, that Mi­nerals are altogether insensible of cold or frost, but they do not freeze like liquid bodies; nay, not all liquid bodies will freeze; as for example, some sorts of spiri­tuous liquors, Oil, Vinous spirits, Chymical ex­tracts, &c. which proves, that not all (that is to say) the infinite parts of Nature, are subject to one particu­lar kind of action, to wit, the action of freezing; for if Congelation did extend to the infinite parts of Nature, it would not be a finite and particular, but an infinite action; but, as I said, liquid bodies are more apt to freeze, (especially water and watery liquors,) then dense and hard bodies, or some sorts of oil, and spirits; for, as we see that fire cannot have the same operation on all bodies alike, but some it causes to consume and turn to ashes, some it hardens, some it softens, and on some it hath no power at all: So its opposite Frost or Cold cannot congeal every natural body, but onely those which are apt to freeze or imitate the motions of cold. Neither do all these bodies freeze alike, but some slower, some quicker; some into such, and some into another figure; as for example, even in one kind of Creatures, as animals; some Beasts, as Foxes, Bears, and the like, are not so much sensible of cold, as Man, and some other animal Creatures; and dead animals, [Page 112] or parts of dead animals, will freeze much sooner then those which are living; not that living animals have more natural life then those we call dead; for animals, when dissolved from their animal figure, although they have not animal life, yet they have life according to the nature of the figure into which they did change; but, because of their different perceptions; for a dead or dissolved animal, as it is of another kind of figure then a living animal, so it has also another kind of percep­tion, which causes it to freeze sooner then a living ani­mal doth. But I cannot apprehend what some Learned mean by the powerful effects of cold upon inanimate bodies; whether they mean, that cold is onely animate, and all other bodies inanimate; or whether both cold and other bodies on which it works, be inanimate; if the later, I cannot conceive how inanimate bodies can work upon each other, I mean such bodies as have nei­ther life nor motion, for without life or motion there can be no action: but if the former, I would fain know whether Cold be self-moving? if not, I ask, What is that which moves it? Is it an Immaterial Spirit, or some corporeal being? If an Immaterial Spirit, we must allow, that this Spirit is either self-moving, or must be moved by another; if it be moved by another Being, and that same Being again by another; we shall after this manner run into infinite, and conclude no­thing; But if that Imaterial Spirit have self-mo­tion, why may not a natural corporeal being have the [Page 113] like? they being both Creatures of God, who can as well grant self-motion to a corporeal, as to an incorpo­real Being; nay, I am not able to comprehend how Motion can be attributed to a Spirit; I mean, natural motion, which is onely a propriety of a body, or of a corporeal Being: but if Cold be self-moving, then Nature is self-moving; for the cause can be no less then the effect; and if Nature be self-moving, no part of Nature can be inanimate; for as the body is, so are its parts; and as the cause, so its effects. Thus some Learned do puzle themselves and the world with useless distinctions into animate and inanimate Crea­tures, and are so much afraid of self-motion, as they will rather maintain absurdities and errors, then allow any other self-motion in Nature, but what is in them­selves; for they would fain be above Nature, and petty Gods, if they could but make themselves Infi­nite; not considering that they are but parts of Na­ture, as all other Creatnres: Wherefore I, for my part, will rather believe as sense and reason guides me, and not according to interest, so as to extoll my own kind above all the rest, or above Nature her self. And thus to return to Cold; as Congelation is not a Universal or Infinite action, which extends to the In­finite parts of Nature, and causes not the like effects in those Creatures that are perceptible of it; so I do also observe, that not any other sorts of bodies but Water will congeal into the figure of Snow, when as [Page 114] there are many that will turn into the figure of Ice; be­sides, I observe that air doth not freeze beyond its de­gree of consistency; for if it did, no animal Creature would be able to breath, since all or most of them are subject to such a sort of respiration, as requires a certain intermediate degree of air, neither too thick, nor too thin; what respirations other Creatures require, I am not able to determine; for as there are several infinite parts and actions of Nature, so also several sorts of Re­spirations; and I believe, that what is called the ebbing and flowing of the Sea, may be the Seas Respiration; for Nature has ordered for every part or Creature that which is most fitting and proper for it.

Concerning Artificial Congelations, as to turn Water or Snow into the figure of Ice, by the commix­ture of Salt, Nitre, Allum, or the like, it may, very probably, be effected; for Water and watery liquors, their interior figure being Circular, may easily change, by contracting that Circular figure into a Triangle or square; that is, into Ice or Snow, (for Water, in my opinion, has a round or Circular interior figure, Snow a Triangular, and Ice a square; I do not mean an ex­act Mathematical Triangle or Square, but such a one as is proper for their figures) and that the mixture of those, or the like ingredients, being shaken together in a Vial, doth produce films of Ice on the outside of the Glass, as Experimenters relate; proves, not onely that the motions of Cold are very strong, but also that [Page 115] there is perception in all parts of Nature, and that all Congelations, both natural and artificial, are made by the corporeal perceptive motions which the sentient has of exterior cold; which is also the reason, that Salt being mixt with Snow, makes the liquor always freeze first on that side of the Vessel where the mixture is; for those parts which are nearest, will imitate first the mo­tions of frost, and after them the neighbouring parts, until they be all turned into Ice: The truth is, that all or most artificial experiments are the best arguments to evince, there is perception in all corporeal parts of Na­ture; for as parts are joyned, or commix with parts; so they move or work accordingly into such or such fi­gures, either by the way of imitation, or otherwise; for their motions are so various, as it is impossible for one particulare to describe them all; but no motion can be without perception, because every part or particle of Nature, as it is self-moving, so it is also self-knowing and perceptive; for Matter, Self-motion, Knowledg and Perception, are all but one thing, and no more dif­fering nor separable from each other, then Body, Place, Magnitude, Colour and Figure; Wherefore Expe­rimental Philosophers cannot justly blame me for main­taining the opinion of Self-motion, and a general Per­ception in Nature.

But to return to Artificial Congelations; there is as much difference between Natural and Artificial Ice and Snow, as there is between Chalk and Cheese; or [Page 116] between a natural Child, and a Baby made of Paste or Wax, and Gummed-silk; or between artificial Glass, and natural Diamonds; the like may be said of Hail, Frost, Wind, &c. for though their exterior figures do resemble, yet their interior natures are quite dif­ferent; and therefore, although by the help of Art some may make Ice of Water or Snow, yet we cannot conclude from hence that all natural Ice is made the same way, by saline particles, or acid Spirits, and the like; for if Nature should work like Art, she would produce a man like as a Carver makes a statue, or a Painter draws a picture: besides, it would require a world of such saline or acid particles to make all the Ice that is in Nature. Indeed it is as much absurdity, as im­possibility, to constitute some particular action the common principle of all natural heat or cold, and to make a Universal cause of a particular effect; for no particular Part or Action can be prime in Nature, or a fundamental principle of other Creatures or actions, although it may occasion some Creatures to move after such or such a way. Wherefore those that will needs have a Primum Frigidum, or some Body which they suppose must of necessity be supremely cold, and by participation of which, all other cold Bodies ob­tain that quality, whereof some do contend for Earth, some for Water, others for Air; some for Nitre, and others for Salt, do all break their heads to no purpose; for first, there are no extreams in Nature, and there­fore [Page 117] no Body can be supreamely cold, nor supreamly hot: Next, as I said, it is impossible to make one par­ticular sort of Creatures the principle of all the various sorts of heat or cold that are in Nature; for there is an Elemental heat and cold, a Vegetable, Mineral, Ani­mal heat and cold; and there may be many other sorts which we do not know; and how can either Earth or Water, or Nitre, or Salt, be the Principle of all these different colds? Concerning the Earth, we see that some parts of the Earth are hot, and some cold; the like of Water and Air; and the same parts which are now hot, will often in a moment grow cold, which shews they are as much subject to the perception of heat and cold, as some other Creatures, and doth plainly deny to them the possibility of being a Primum Frigidum. I have mentioned in my Poetical Works, that there is a Sun in the Center of the Earth; and in another place, I have described a Chymical heat; but these being but Poetical Fancies, I will not draw them to any serious proofs; onely this I will say, that there may be degrees of heat and cold in the Earth, and in Water, as well as there are in the Air; for certainly the Earth is not with­out Motion, a dull, dead, moveless and inanimate body; but it is as much interiously active, as Air and Water are exteriously; which is evident enough by the various productions of Vegetables, Minerals, and other bodies that derive their off-spring out of the Earth: And as for Nitre and Salt, although they may [Page 118] occasion some sorts of Colds in some sorts of Bodies, like as some sorts of food, or tempers of Air, or the like, may work such or such effects in some sorts of Creatures; yet this doth not prove that they are the onely cause of all kinds of heat and cold that are in Nature. The truth is, if Air, Water, Earth, Nitre, or Salt, or insensible, roving and wandering atomes should be the only cause of cold; then there would be no difference of hot and cold climates, but it would freeze as well under the Line, as it doth at the Poles. But there's such a stir kept about Atoms, as that they are so full of action, and produce all things in the world, and yet none describes by what means they move, or from whence they have this active power.

Lastly, Some are of opinion, that the chief cause of all cold, and its effects, is wind; which they describe to be air moved in a considerable quantity, and that either forwards onely, or in an undulating motion; which opinion, in my judgment, is as erroneous as any of the former, and infers another absurdity, which is, that all Winds are of the same nature, when as there are as many several sorts and differences of Winds, as of other Creatures; for there are several Winds in several Creatures; Winds in the Earth are of another kind then those in the Air, and the Wind of an animal breath, is different from both; nay, those that are in the air, are of different sorts; some cold and dry, some hot and moist, and some temperate, &c. [Page 119] which how they can all produce the effect of cold or freezing by the compression of the air, I am not able to judg: onely this I dare say, that if Wind causes cold or frost; then in the midst of the Summer, or in hot Climates, a vehement wind would always pro­duce a great Frost; besides it would prove, that there must of necessity be far greater winds at the Poles, then under the AEquinoctial, there being the greatest cold: Neither will this principle be able to resolve the que­stion, why a man that has an Ague feels a shaking cold, even under the Line, and in the coldest weather when there is no stirring of the least wind: All which proves, that it is very improbable that Wind should be the principle of all Natural Cold, and therefore it remains firm, that self-moving Matter, or corporeal, figurative self-motion, as it is the Prime and onely cause of all natural effects, so it is also of Cold, and Heat, and Wind, and of all the changes and altera­tions in Nature; which is, and hath always been my constant, and, in my simple judgment, the most probable and rational opinion in Natural Philoso­phy.

28. Of Thawing or dissolving of Frozen bodies.

AS Freezing or Congelation is caused by con­tracting, condensing, and retentive Motions; so Thawing is nothing else, but dissolving, dilating, and [Page 120] extending motions; for Freezing and Thawing are two contrary actions; and as Freezing is caused several ways, according to the various disposition of congela­ble bodies, and the temper of exterior cold; so Thaw­ing, or a dissolution of frozen bodies, may be occasi­oned either by a sympathetical agreement; as for ex­ample, the thawing of Ice in water, or other liquors, or by some exterior imitation, as by hot dilating moti­ons. And it is to be observed, That as the time of freezing, so the time of dissolving is according to the several natures and tempers both of the frozen bodies themselves, and the exterior objects applied to frozen bodies, which occasion their thawing or dissolution: for it is not onely heat that doth cause Ice, or Snow, or other frozen bodies to melt quicker or slower, but ac­cording as the nature of the heat is, either more or less dilative, or more or less rarifying; for surely an exte­rior actual heat is more rarifying then an interior vir­tual heat; as we see in strong spirituous liquors which are interiously contracting, but being made actually hot, become exteriously dilating: The like of many other bodies; so that actual heat is more dissolving then vir­tual heat. And this is the reason why Ice and Snow will melt sooner in some Countries or places then in others, and is much harder in some then in others; for we see that neither Air, Water, Earth, Mi­nerals, nor any other sorts of Creatures are just a­like in all Countries or Climates: The same may be [Page 121] said of heat and cold. Besides, it is to be observed, that oftentimes a different application of one and the same object will occasion different effects; as for example, if Salt be mixed with Ice, it may cause the contracted body of Ice to change its present motions into its for­mer state or figure, viz. into water; but being applied outwardly, or on the out-side of the Vessel wherein Snow or Ice is contained, it may make it freeze harder, instead of dissolving it. Also Ice will oftentimes break into pieces of its own accord, and without the applica­tion of any exterior object; and the reason, in my opinion, is, that some of the interior parts of the Ice, en­deavouring to return to their proper and natural figure by vertue of their interior dilative motions, do break and divide some of the exterior parts that are contracted by the motions of Frost, especially those which have not so great a force or power as to resist them.

But concerning Thawing, some by their trails have found, that if frozen Eggs, Apples, and the like bodies, be thawed near the fire, they will be thereby spoiled; but if they be immersed in cold water, or wrapt into Ice or Snow, the internal cold will be drawn out, as they suppose, by the external; and the frozen bo­dies will be harmlesly, though not so quickly thawed. And truly this experiment stands much to reason; for, in my opinion, when frozen bodies perceive heat or fire, the motions of their frozen parts upon the percep­tion, endeavour to imitate the motions of heat or fire, [Page 122] which being opposite to the motions of cold, in this sudden and hasty change, they become irregular in so much as to cause in most frozen parts a dissolution of their interior natural figure; Wherefore it is very probable, that frozen bodies will thaw more regularly in water, or being wrapt into Ice or Snow, then by heat or fire; for Thawing is a dilating action, and Water, as also Ice and Snow (which are nothing but congealed water) being of a dilative nature, may ea­sily occasion a thawing of the mentioned frozen parts by Sympathy, provided, the Motions of the exterior cold do not over-power the motions of the interior fro­zen parts; for if a frozen body should be wrapt thus in­to Ice or Snow, and continue in an open, cold frosty air, I question whether it would cause a thaw in the same body, it would preserve the body in its frozen state from dissolving or disuniting, rather then occasion its thawing. But that such frozen bodies, as Apples, and Eggs, &c. immersed in water, will produce Ice on their out-sides, is no wonder, by reason the motions of Water imitate the motions of the frozen bodies; and those parts of water that are nearest, are the first imitators, and become of the same mode. By which we may see, that some parts will cloath themselves, others onely vail themselves with artificial dresses, most of which dresses are but copies of other motions, and not original acti­ons; It makes also evident, that those effects are not caused by an ingress of frigorifick atomes in water, or [Page 123] other congelable bodies, but by the perceptive moti­ons of their own parts. And what I have said of Cold, the same may be spoken of heat; for it is known, that a part of a mans body being burned with fire, the burning may be cured by the heat of the fire; which, in my opinion, proceeds from a sympathetical agreement be­twixt the motions of the fire, and the motions of the burned part; for every part of a mans body hath its na­tural heat, which is of an intermediate temper; which heat being heightened by the burning motions of fire beyond its natural degree, causes a burning and smart­ing pain in the same part; and therefore as the fire did occasion an immoderate heat, by an intermixture of its own parts with the parts of the flesh; so a moderate heat of the fire may reduce again the natural heat of the same parts, and that by a sympathetical agreement betwixt the motions of the Elemental and Animal heat; But it is to be observed, first, that the burning must be done by an intermixture of the fire with the parts of the body: Next, that the burning must be but skin deep (as we use to call it) that is, the burned part must not be totally overcome by fire, or else it will never be re­stored again. Neither are all burned bodies restored after this manner, but some; for one and the same thing will not in all bodies occasion the like effects; as we may see by Fire, which being one and the same, will not cause all fuels to burn alike; and this makes true the old saying, One Mans Meat is another Mans Poyson. The truth [Page 124] is, it cannot be otherwise; for though Nature, and natural self-moving Matter is but one body, and the onely cause of all natural effects; yet Nature being divided into infinite, corporeal, figurative self-moving parts, these parts, as the effects of that onely cause, must needs be various; and again, proceeding from one infinite cause, as one matter, they are all but one thing, because they are infinite parts of one Infinite body. But some may say, If Nature be but one body, and the Infinite parts are all united into that same body; How comes it that there is such an opposition, strife, and war betwixt the parts of Nature? I answer: Nature be­ing Material, is composeable and divideable; and as Composition is made by a mutual agreement of parts, so division is made by an opposition or strife betwixt parts; which opposition or division doth not obstruct the Union of Nature, but, on the contrary, rather proves, that without an opposition of parts, there could not be a union or composition of so many several parts and creatures, nor no change or variety in Nature; for if all the parts did unanimously conspire and agree in their motions, and move all but one way, there would be but one act or kind of motion in Nature; when as an opposition of some parts, and a mutual agree­ment of others, is not onely the cause of the Mira­culous variety in Nature, but it poyses and bal­lances, as it were, the corporeal, figurative motions, which is the cause that Nature is steady and fixt in [Page 125] her self, although her parts be in a perpetual mo­tion.

29. Several Questions resolved concerning Cold, and Frozen Bodies, &c.

FIrst, I will give you my answer to the question, which is much agitated amongst the Learned con­cerning Cold, to wit, Whether it be a Positive qua­lity, or a bare Privation of Heat? And my opinion is, That Cold is both a Positive quality, and a privation of heat: For whatsoever is a true quality of Cold, must needs be a privation of Heat; since two opposites cannot subsist together in one and the same part, at one point of time. By Privation, I mean nothing else, but an alteration of Natures actions in her several parts, or which is all one, a change of natural, corporeal motions; and so the death of Animals may be called a privation of animal life; that is, a change of the animal motions in that particular Creature, which made animal life, to some other kind of action which is not animal life. And in this sense, both Cold and Heat, although they be po­sitive qualities, or natural beings, yet they are also pri­vations; that is, changes of corporeal, figurative mo­tions, in several particular Creatures, or parts of Na­ture. But what some Learned mean by Bare Priva­tion, I cannot apprehend; for there's no such thing as a bare Privation, or bare Motion in Nature; but [Page 126] all Motion is Corporeal, or Material; for Matter, Motion and Figure, are but one thing. Which is the reason, that to explain my self the better [...] of Motion, I do always add the word corporeal [...] [...] ­gurative; by which, I exclude all bare or immaterial Motion, which expression is altogether against sense and reason.

The second Question is, Whether Winds have the power to change the Exterior temper of the Air? To which, I answer: That Winds will not onely occasion the Air to be either hot or cold, according to their own temper, but also Animals and Vegetables, and other sorts of Creatures; for the sensitive, corporeal Motions in several kinds of Creatures, do often imitate and fi­gure out the Motions of exterior objects, some more, some less; some regularly, and some irregularly, and some not at all; according to the nature of their own perceptions. By which we may observe, that the A­gent, which is the external object, has onely an oc­casional power; and the Patient, which is the sen­tient, works chiefly the effect by vertue of the per­ceptive, figurative motions in its own sensitive organs or parts.

Quest. 3. Why those Winds that come from cold Regions, are most commonly cold, and those that come from hot Regions are for the most part hot? I answer; The reason is, That those Winds have more constantly patterned out the motions of cold or heat [Page 127] in those parts from which they either separated them­selves, or which they have met withal. But it may be questioned, Whether all cold and hot winds do bring their heat and cold along with them out of such hot and cold Countries? And I am of opinion they do not; but that they proceed from an imitation of the nearest parts, which take patterns from other parts, and these again from the remoter parts; so that they are but patterns of other patterns, and copies of other copies.

Quest. 4. Why Fire in some cold Regions will hardly kindle, or at least not burn freely? I answer; This is no more to be wondered at, then that some men do die with cold; for cold being contrary to fire, if it have a predominate power, it will without doubt put out the fire; not that the cold corporeal motions do destroy fire by their actual power over it, but that fire destroys it self by an imitation of the motions of cold; so that cold is onely an occasional cause of the fires destruction, or at least of the alteration of its mo­tions, and the diminution of its strength. But some might ask, What makes or causes this imitation in several sorts of Cretures? I answer, The wisdom of Nature, which orders her corporeal actions to be always in a mean, so that one extream (as one may call it) does countervail another. But then you'l say, There would always be a right and mean temper in all things. I answer: So there is in the whole, that is, in Infinite Nature, al­though not in every particular; for Natures Wisdom [Page 128] orders her particulars to the best of the whole; and al­though particulars do oppose each other, yet all oppo­sition tends to the conservation of a general peace and unity in the whole. But to return to Fire; since Air is the proper matter of respiration for fire, extream colds and frosts, either of air or vapour, are as unfit for the respiration of fire as water is; which if it do not kill it quite, yet it will at least make it sick, pale and faint; but if water be rarified to such a degree, that it becomes thin vapour, then it is as proper for its respiration, as air. Thus we see, although fire hath fuel, which is its food, yet no food can keep it alive without breath or re­spiration: The like may be said of some other Crea­tures.

Qu. 5. Whether Wood be apt to freeze? My Answer is, That I believe that the moist part of Wood, which is sap, may freeze as hard as Water, but the solid parts can­not do so; for the cracking noise of Wood is no proof of its being frozen, because Wainscot will make such a noise in Summer, as well as in Winter. And it is to be observed, that some bodies will be apter to freeze in a weak, then in a hard frost, according to their own dispositions; which is as much to be considered, as the object of cold or frost it self; for some bodies do more, and some less imitate the motions of some ob­jects, and some not at all: and thus we see that solid bodies do onely imitate the contractive motions of cold, but not the dilative motions of moisture, which [Page 129] is the cause they break in a hard frost, like as a string, which being tied too hard, will fly asun­der; and as they imitate Cold, so they do also imitate Thaw.

Quest. 6. Whether Water be fluid in its nature, or but occasionally by the agitation of the air? I answer: That Waters is fluid in its own nature, needs no proof, but 'tis known enough by the force of its dilating mo­tions; for Water, when it gets but liberty, it over­flows all, and dilates everywhere; which proves it is not air that makes it fluid, but it is so in its own nature.

Quest. 7. What produces those great Precipices and Mountains of Ice which are found in the Sea, and other great waters? I answer: That Snow, as also thick Fogs and Mists, which are nothing but rarified wa­ter, falling upon the Ice, make its out-side thicker, and many great shelves and broken pieces of Ice joyning together, produce such Precipices and Mountains as mentioned.

Quest. 8. Whether Fishes can live in frozen Wa­ter? I answer: If there be as much water left un­frozen, as will serve them for respiration, they may live; for it is well known, that Water is the chief matter of respiration for Fish, and not Air; for Fish being out of water, cannot live long, but whilst they live, they gasp and gape for water: I mean such kinds of Fish which do live altogether in Water, and not [Page 130] such Creatures as are of a mixt kind, and live in water as well as by land, which the Learned call Am­phibious Creatures; as Otters, and the like, which may live in the air, as well as in water: Those Fish, I say, if the water be thorowly frozen, or if but the surface of water be quite frozen over to a pretty depth, will often die, by reason the water that remains unfro­zen, by the contraction of Ice has altered for that time its dilative motions, to retentive motions; and like as men are smothered in a close air, so Fish in close wa­ter, that is, in water which is quite covered and in­closed with Ice: but at some men have not so nice and tender natures as others, and some have larger organs for respiration then others, and some are more accustomed to some sorts of air then others, which may cause them to endure longer, or respire more freely then others; so some Fishes do live longer in such close waters, then others; and some may be like Men that are frost-bitten, which may chance to live even in those waters that are quite thorowly frozen, as Experimenters relate; but yet I cannot believe, that the water, in which Fishes have been observed to live, can be so thorowly frozen to solid Ice, that it should not leave some liquidity or wetness in it, although not perceptible by our sight, by which those Fishes were preserved alive: However, it is more probable for Fish to live in Ice, then for other Creatures, be­cause the Principle of Ice is Water, which is the [Page 131] matter of the Fishes respiration, which keeps them alive.

Quest. 9. Whether in decoctions of Herbs, when congealed or frozen into Ice, the figures of the Herbs do appear in the Ice? This is affirmed for Truth by many Learned; and though I do not deny, but that such liquors in freezing may have some resemblance of their solid parts; yet I do not believe it to be universal; for if the blood of an animal should be congealed into Ice, I doubt it would hardly represent the figure of an animal. Indeed there's much difference between the exterior figures of Creatures, and their interior natures, which is evident even in frozen water, whose exteri­or Icy figures are numerous, when as their interior na­ture is but water; and there may also several changes and alterations of exterior figures be made by Art, when their interior nature is but one and the same.

Quest. 10. Whether Cold doth preserve Bodies from Corruption? I answer: That, in my opinion, it may be very probable: For Corruption or Putrefaction is nothing but irregular dissolving motions; when as Free­zing or Congelation is made by regular contracting and condensing motions; and so long as these motions of Freezing are in force, it is impossible the motions that make Corruption should work their effect. But that such bodies as have been thorowly frozen, after being thawed, are most commonly spoiled; the rea­son is, that the freezing or congealing motions, being not natural to those bodies, have caused such a thorow­alteration [Page 132] of the natural motions of their parts, as a hun­dred to one but they will never move regularly and or­derly again afterward; but on the contrary, their interior motions do quite and absolutelely change, by which the figure is totally altered from its former nature: but if a solid body be not throughly frozen, it may be redu­ced to a perfect regularity again; for those natural mo­tions that are not altered, may occasion the rest to act as formerly, to the preservation of that figure.

30. Of Contraction and Dilation.

THere have been, and are still great disputes a­mongst the Learned concerning Contraction and Extension of bodies; but if I were to decide their con­troversie, I would ask first, Whether they did all agree in one principle? that is, whether their principle was purely natural, and not mixt with divine or supernatural things; for if they did not well apprehend one anothers meaning, or argued upon different principles, it would be but a folly to dispute, because it would be impos­sible for them to agree. But concerning Contraction and Dilation, my opinion is, That there can be no Contraction nor Extension of a single part, by reason there is no such thing as a single or individeable part in Nature; for even that which the learned call an atome, although they make it a single body, yet being mate­terial or corporeal, it must needs be divideable: Where­fore [Page 133] all Contraction and Dilation consists of parts as much as body doth, and there is no body that is not contractive and dilative, as well as it is divideable and composeable; for parts are, as it were, the effects of a body, by reason there is no body without parts; and contraction and extension are the effects of parts, and magnitude and place are the effects of contraction and extension; and all these are the effects of corporeal fi­gurative self-motion, which I have more fully declared in several places of my Philosophical Works.

But some may say, It is impossible that a body can make it self bigger or less then by Nature it is? My answer is, I do not conceive what is meant by being little or great by Nature; for Nature is in a perpetual motion, and so are her parts, which do work, inter­mix, join, divide and move according as Nature plea­ses without any rest or intermission. Now if there be such changes of parts and motions, it is impossible that there can be any constant figure in Nature; I mean, so as not to have its changes of motions as well as the rest, although they be not all after the same manner; And if there can be no constant figure in Nature, there can neither be a constant littleness or greatness, nor a constant rarity or density, but all parts of Nature must change according to their motions; for as parts divide and compose, so are their figures; and since there are contracting and dilating motions, as well as there are of other sorts, there are also contracting and dilating [Page 134] parts; and if there be contracting and dilating parts, then their magnitude changes accordingly; for mag­nitude doth not barely consist in quantity, but in the ex­tension of the parts of the body, and as the magnitude of a body is, so is place; so that place is larger, or less, according as the body contracts or dilates; for it is well to be observed, that it is not the interior figure of any part of Creature of Nature that alters by contraction or dilation; for example, Gold or Quicksilver is not changed from being Gold or Quicksilver when it is ra­rified, but onely that figure puts it self into several po­stures. Which proves, that the extension of a body is not made by an addition or intermixture of forraign parts, as composition; nor contraction, by a dimi­nution of its own parts, as division; for dilation and composition, as also division and contraction, are dif­ferent actions; the dilation of a body is an extension of its own parts, but composition is an addition of forreign parts; and contraction, although it makes the body less in magnitude, yet it loses nothing of its own parts: The truth is, as division and composition are natural corporeal motions, so are contraction and dilation; and as both composition and division belong to parts, so do contraction and dilation; for there can be no contracti­on or dilation of a single part.

31. Of the Parts of Nature, and of Atomes.

ALthough I am of opinion, that Nature is a self-moving, and consequently a self-living and self-knowing infinite body, divideable into infinite parts; yet I do not mean that these parts are Atomes; for there can be no Atome, that is, an individeable body in Nature, because whatsoever has body, or is mate­rial, has quantity, and what has quantity is divideable. But some may say, if a part be finite, it cannot be di­videable into Infinite. To which I answer, that there is no such thing as one finite single part in Nature; for when I speak of the parts of Nature, I do not under­stand, that those parts are like grains of Corn, or sand in one heap, all of one figure or magnitude, and sepa­rable from each other; but I conceive Nature to be an Infinite body, bulk or magnitude, which by its own self-motion is divided into infinite parts, not single or individable parts, but parts of one continued body, one­ly discernable from each other by their proper figures, caused by the changes of particular motions; for it is well to be observed, first, that Nature is corporeal, and therefore divideable: Next, That Nature is self­moving, and therefore never at rest; I do not mean exteriously moving; for Nature being infinite, is all within it self, and has nothing without or beyond it, because it is without limits or bounds; but interiously, [Page 136] so that all the motions that are in Nature are within her self, and being various and infinite in their changes, they divide the substance or body of Nature into infinite parts; for the parts of Nature, and changes of Mo­tion are but one thing; for were there no Motion, there would be no change of figures: 'Tis true, Matter in its own nature would be divideable, because whereso­ever is body, there are parts; but if it had no motion, it would not have such various changes of figures as it hath; wherefore it is well to be considered, that self­motion is throughout all the body of Nature, and that no part or figure, how small soever, can be without self-motion; and according as the motions are, so are the parts; for infinite changes of motions make infinite parts; nay, what we call one finite part, may have in­finite changes, because it may be divided and compo­sed infinite ways. By which it is evident, first, that no certain quantity or figure can be assigned to the parts of Nature, as I said before of the grains of corn or sand; for infinite changes of motions produce infinite varie­ties of figures; and all the degrees of density, rarity, levity, gravity, slowness, quickness; nay, all the ef­fects that are in Nature: Next, that it is impossible to have single parts in Nature, that is, parts which are individeable in themselves, as Atomes; and may subsist single, or by themselves, precised or separated from all other parts; for although there are perfect and whole figures in Nature, yet are they nothing else but parts [Page 137] of Nature, which consist of a composition of other parts, and their figures make them discernable from other parts or figures of Nature. For example: an Eye, although it be composed of parts, and has a whole and perfect figure, yet it is but a part of the Head, and could not subsist without it: Also the Head, al­though it has a whole and perfect figure, yet 'tis a part of the Body, and could not subsist without it. The same may be said of all other particular and perfect fi­gures. As for example: an Animal, though it be a whole and perfect figure, yet it is but a part of Earth, and some other Elements, and parts of Nature, and could not subsist without them; nay, for any thing we know to the contrary, the Elements cannot subsist without other Creatures: All which proves, that there are no single Parts, nor Vacuum, nor no [...] of loose Atomes in Nature; for if such a whole and perfect figure should be divided into millions of other parts and figures, yet it is impossible to divide it into single parts, by reason there is as much composition, as there is division in Nature; and as soon as parts are divided from such or such parts, at that instant of time, and by the same act of division they are joyned to other parts; and all this because Nature is a body of a conti­nued infiniteness, without any holes or vacuities: Nay, were it possible that there could be a single part, that is, a part separated from all the rest; yet being a part of Nature, it must consist of the same substance as Na­ture [Page 138] her self; but Nature is an Infinite composition of rational, sensitive and inanimate matter; which although they do constitute but one body because of their close and inseparable conjunction and commixture; never­theless they are several parts (for one part is not ano­ther part) and therefore every part or particle of Na­ture consisting of the same commixture, cannot be sin­gle or individable. Thus it remains firm, that self­motion is the onely cause of the various parts and changes of figures; and that when parts move or sepa­rate themselves from parts, they move and joyn to other parts at the same point of time; I do not mean that parts do drive or press upon each other, for those are forced and constraint actions, when as natural self-mo­tions are free and voluntary; and although there are pressures and re-actions in Nature, yet they are not u­niversal actions: Neither is there any such thing as a stoppage in the actions of Nature, nor do parts move through Empty spaces; but as some parts joyn, so o­thers divide by the same act; for although some parts can quit such or such parts, yet they cannot quit all parts; for example, a man goes a hundred miles, he leaves or quits those parts from whence he removed first; but as soon as he removes from such parts, he joyns to other parts, were his motion no more then a hairs breadth; so that all his journey is nothing else but a division and composition of parts, wheresoever he goes by water, or by land; for it is impossible for him [Page 139] to quit parts in general, although it be in his choice to quit such or such particular parts, and to join to what parts he will.

When I speak of Motion, I desire to be under­stood, that I do not mean any other but corpo­real motion; for there is no other motion in Na­ture; so that Generation, Dissolution, Alteration, Augmentation, Diminution, Transformation; nay, all the actions of Sense and Reason, both interior, and exterior, and what motions soever in Nature are corpo­real, although they are not all perceptible by our ex­terior senses; for our senses are too gross to perceive all the curious and various actions of Nature, and it would be but a folly to deny what our senses cannot perceive; for although Sense and Reason are the same in all Creatures and parts of Nature, not having any degrees in themselves, no more then self-knowledg hath; for self-knowledg can but be self-knowledg, and sense and reason can but be sense and reason; yet they do not work in all parts of Nature alike, but according as they are composed: and therefore it is impossible for any humane eye to see the exterior motions of all Crea­tures, except they be of some grosser bodies; For who can see the motion of the Air, and the like? Nay, I believe not that all exterior motions of grosser bodies can be perceived by our sight, much less their interior actions; and by this I exclude Rest: for if Matter, or corporeal Nature be in a perpetual motion, there [Page 140] can be no rest in Nature, but what others call rest, is nothing else but retentive motions, which retentive mo­tions, are as active as dispersing motions; for Mr. Des Cartes says well, that it requires as much action or force to stay a Ship, as to set it a float; and there is as much action required in keeping parts together, as in disper­sing them. Besides, interior motions are as active as some exterior; nay, some more; and I believe, if there were a World of Gold, whose parts are close and dense, it would be as active interiously, as a world of air, which is fluid and rare, would be active exteri­ously. But some may say, How is it possible that: there can be a motion of bodies without an empty space; for one body cannot move in another body? I an­swer: Space is change of division, as Place is change of magnitude; but division and magnitude belong to body; therefore space and place cannot be without bo­dy, but wheresoever is body, there is place also: Nei­ther can a body leave a place behind it; so that the di­stinction of interior and exterior place is needless, be­cause no body can have two places, but place and body are but one thing; and whensoever the body changes, its place changes also. But some do not consider that there are degrees of Matter; for Natures body doth not consist of one degree, as to be all hard or dense like a stone, but as there are infinite changes of Motion, so there are in Nature infinite degrees of density, rarity, grossness, purity, hardness, softness, &c. all caused [Page 141] by self-motion; which hard, gross, rare, fluid, dense, subtil, and many other sorts of bodies, in their several degrees, may more easily move, divide and join, from and with each other, being in a continued body, then if they had a Vacuum to move in; for were there a Va­cuum, there would be no successive motions, nor no degrees of swiftness and slowness, but all Motion would be done in an instant. The truth is, there would be such distances of several gaps and holes, that Parts would never join if once divided; in so much as a piece of the world would become a single parti­cular World, not joyning to any part besides it self; which would make a horrid confusion in Nature con­trary to all sense and reason. Wherefore the opinion of Vacuum is, in my judgment, as absurd as the opini­on of senseless and irrational Atomes, moving by chance; for it is more probable that atomes should have life and knowledg to move regularly, then that they should move regularly and wisely by chance, and without life and knowledg; for there can be no re­gular motion without knowledg, sense and reason; and therefore those that are for Atomes, had best to be­lieve them to be self-moving, living and knowing bo­dies, or else their opinion is very irrational. But the opinion of Atomes, is fitter for a Poetical fancy, then for serious Philosophy; and this is the reason that I have waved it in my Philosophical Works: for if there can be no single parts, there cannot be Atomes [Page 142] in Nature, or else Nature would be like a Beggars coat full of lice; Neither would she be able to rule those wandering and stragling atomes, because they are not parts of her body, but each is a single body by it self, having no dependance upon each other; Wherefore if there should be a composition of Atomes, it would not be a body made of parts, but of so many whole and intire single bodies meeting together as a swarm of Bees: The truth is, every Atome being single, must be an absolute body by it self, and have an absolute power and knowledg; by which it would become a kind of a Deity; and the concourse of them would ra­ther cause a confusion, then a conformity in Nature, because all Atomes, being absolute, they would all be Governours, but none would be governed.

Thus I have declared my opinion concerning the parts of Nature, as also Vacuum, and Atomes; to wit, That it is impossible there can be any such things in Nature. I will conclude after I have given my answer to these two following Questions.

First, It may be asked, Whether the Parts of a Composed figure do continue in such a Composition until the whole figure be dissolved? I answer, My o­pinion is, that in some compositions they do continue, at least some longer then others; but although some parts of a figure do disjoin from each other, and join with others; yet the structure of the Creature may ne­vertheless continue. Neither is it necessary, that those [Page 143] which begin a buiding, must needs stay to the end or perfection of it, for some may begin, others may work on, and others may finish it; also some may repair, and some may ruine; and it is well to be observed, that the compositions of all Creatures are not alike, nor do they continue or dissolve all alike, and at the same time.

Secondly, It may be questioned, Whether there can be an infinite distance between two or more parts? And my answer is, That distance properly doth not belong to infinite, but onely to finite pars; for distance is a certain measure between parts and parts, and where­soever is a measure, there must be two extreams; but there are no extreams nor ends in infinite, and there­fore there can be no infinite distance between parts. In­deed, it is a meer contradiction, and non-sense to say, Infinit between parts, by reason the word Between, im­plies a finiteness, as between such a part, and such a part. But you will say, Because Nature is an infinite body, it must have an infinite measure; for wheresoever is bo­dy, there is magnitude and figure; and wheresoever is magnitude and figure, there is measure. I answer: 'Tis true, body, magnitude and figure, are all but one thing; and according as the body is, so is its magnitude and figure; but the body of Nature being infinite, its magnitude and figure must also be infinite. But mi­stake me not: I do not mean a circumscribed and per­fect exterior magnitude, by reason there's nothing ex­terior [Page 144] in respect to Infinite, but in relation to its infinite parts. The truth is, Men do often mistake in adscri­bing to Infinite that which properly belongs to particu­lars; or at least they consider the attributes of an infi­nite and a finite body, after one and the same manner; and no wonder, because a finite capacity cannot com­prehend what infinite is; but although we cannot po­sitively know what infinite is, yet we may guess at it by its opposite, that is, by Finite; for infinite is that which has no terms, bounds or limits; and therefore it cannot be circumscribed; and if it cannot be circumscri­bed as a finite body, it cannot have an exterior magni­tude and figure as a finite body, and consequently no measure. Nevertheless, it is no contradiction to say, it has an Infinite magnitude and figure; for although Infinite Nature cannot have any thing without or be­yond it self, yet it may have magnitude and figure within it self, because it is a body, and by this the mag­nitude and figure of infinite Nature is distinguished from the magnitude and figure of its finite parts; for these have each their exterior and circumscribed figure, which Nature has not. And as for Measure, it is one­ly an effect of a finite magnitude, and belongs to finite parts that have certain distances from each other. 'Tis true, one might in a certain manner say, An infinite distance; as for example, if there be an infinite Line which has no ends, one might call the infinite exten­sion of that line an infinite distance; but this is an im­proper [Page 145] expression, and it is better to keep the term of an infinite extension, then call it an infinite distance; for as I said before, distance is measure, and properly belongs to parts: Nay, if it were possible that there could be an infinite distance of parts in Nature, yet the perpetual changes of Motions, by which parts re­move, and join from and to parts, would not allow any such thing in Nature; for the parts of Nature are always in action, working, intermixing, composing, dividing perpetually; so as it would be impossible for them to keep certain distances.

But to conclude this Discourse, I desire it may be observed.

1. That whatsoever is body, were it an Atome, must have parts; so that body cannot be without parts.

2. That there is no such thing as rest or stoppage in Infinite Matter; but there is self-motion in all parts of Nature, although they are not all exteriously, local­ly moving to our perception; for reason must not de­ny what our senses cannot comprehend: although a piece of Wood or Metal has no exterior progressive motion, such as is found in Animals; nevertheless, it is not without Motion; for it is subject to Generation and Dissolution, which certainly are natural corporeal motions, besides many others; the truth is, the harder, denser, and firmer bodies are, the stronger are their motions; for it requires more strength to keep and [Page 146] hold parts together, then to dissolve and separate them.

3. That without motion, parts could not alter their figures, neither would there be any variety in infinite Nature.

4. If there were any such thing as Atomes, and Va­cuum, there would be no conformity, nor uniformity in Nature.

Lastly, As there is a perpetual self-motion in Na­ture, and all her parts, so it is impossible that there can be perfect measures, constant figures, or single parts in Nature.

32. Of the Celestial Parts of this World; and whether they be alterable?

IT may be questioned, Whether the celestial parts of the world never alter or change by their corporeal figurative motions, but remain constantly the same without any change or alteration? I answer: Con­cerning the general and particular kinds or sorts of Crea­tures of this world, humane sense and reason doth ob­serve, that they do not change, but are continued by a perpetual supply and succession of Particulars without any general alteration or dissolution; but as for the sin­gulars or particulars of those kinds and sorts of Crea­tures, it is most certain, that they are subject to per­petual alterations, generations and dissolutions; for ex­ample, [Page 147] humane sense and reason perceives, that the Parts of the Earth do undergo continual alterations; some do change into Minerals, some into Vegetables, some into Animals, &c. and these change again into several other figures, and also some into Earth again, and the Elements are changed one into another; when as yet the Globe of the Earth it self remains the same without any general alteration or dissolution; neither is there any want or decay of general kinds of Creatures, but onely a change of their particulars; And though our perception is but finite, and must contain it self within its own compass or bounds, so that it cannot judg of all particulars that are in Nature: Never­theless, I see no reason, why the Celestial parts of the World should not be subject to alteration, as well as those of the Terrestrial Globe; for if Nature be full of self-motion, no particular can be at rest, or without action; but the chief actions of Nature are Composi­tion and Division, and changes of Parts: Wherefore, although to our humane perception, the Stars and Pla­nets do not change from their general nature, as from being such or such composed figures, but appear the same to us, without any general or remarkable change of their exterior figures; yet we cannot certainly affirm, that the parts thereof be either moveless or unalterable, they being too remote from our perception, to discern all their particular motions: For put the case, the Moon, or any other of the Planets, were inhabited [Page 148] by animal Creatures, which could see as much of this terrestrial Globe, as we see of the Moon, although they would perceive perhaps the progressive motion of the whole figure of this terrestrial Globe, in the same manner as we do perceive the motion of the Moon, yet they would never be able to discern the particular parts thereof, viz. Trees, Animals, Stones, Water, Earth, &c. much less their particular changes and alterations, ge­nerations and dissolutions. In the like manner do the Celestial Orbs appear to us; for none that inhabit this Globe will ever be able to discern the particular parts of which the Globe of the Moon consists, much less their changes and motions. Indeed, it is with the Celestial Orbs, as it is with other composed parts or figures of Nature, which have their interior, as well as exterior; general, as well as particular motions; for it is impossible, that Nature, consisting of infinite dif­ferent parts, should have but one kind of motion; and therefore as a Man, or any other animal, has first his exterior motions or actions, which belong to his whole composed figure, next his Internal figurative motions by which he grows, decays, and dissolves, &c. Thirdly, As every several part and particle of his body has its interior and exterior actions; so it may be said of the Stars and Planets, which are no more then other parts of Nature, as being composed of the same Matter which all the rest consists of, and partaking of the same self-motion; for although our fight cannot [Page 149] discern more then their progressive, and shining or twinkling motion; nevertheless, they being parts of Na­ture, must of necessity have their interior and exterior, particular and general motions; so that the parts of their bodies may change as much as the parts of this Globe, the figure of the whole remaining still the same; for as I said before, they being too far from our perception, their particular motions cannot be observed; nay, were we able to perceive the exterior actions of their parts, yet their interior motions are no ways perceptible by humane sight; we may observe the effects of some in­terior motions of natural Creatures; for example, of Man, how he changes from infancy to youth, from youth to old age, &c. but how these actions are per­formed inwardly, no Microscope is able to give us a true information thereof. Nevertheless, Mankind is as lasting, as the Sun, Moon and Stars; nay, not onely Mankind, but also several other kinds and spe­cies of Creatures, as Minerals, Vegetables, Elements, and the like; for though particulars change, yet the species do not; neither can the species be impaired by the changes of their particulars; for example, the Sea is no less salt, for all there is so much salt extracted out of salt-water, besides that so many fresh Rivers and Springs do mingle and intermix with it; Neither doth the Earth seem less for all the productions of Vegetables, Minerals and Animals, which derive their birth and origine from thence: Nor doth the race of Mankind [Page 150] seem either more or less now then it was in former ages; for every species of Creatures is preserved by a conti­nued succession or supply of particulars; so that when some die or dissolve from being such natural figures, o­thers are generated and supply the want of them. And thus it is with all parts of Nature, both what we call Celestial and Terrestrial; nor can it be otherwise, since Nature is self-moving, and all her parts are per­petually active.

33. Of the substance of the Sun, and of Fire.

THere are divers opinions concerning the matter or substance of the Sun; some imagine the Sun to be a solid body set on fire; others that it is a fluid body of fire, and others again, that it is onely a body of Light, and not of fire; so as I know not which opi­nion to adhere to: but yet I do rather believe the Sun to be a solid, then a fluid body; by reason fluid bodies are more inconstant in their motions then solid bodies; witness Lightning, which is a fluid fire, and flashes out through the divided clouds, with such a force as water that is pumpt; and being extended beyond the degree of flame, alters to something else that is beyond our humane perception. Indeed, it is of the nature of Air, or else Air inflamed; and as some sorts of Air are more rare, subtil and searching then others, so are some sorts of Lightning, as 'tis known by experience: [Page 151] or it is like several sorts of flame, that have several sorts of fuel to feed on; as for example, the flame of Oyl, the flame of Wood, the flame of Aqua-vitae, the flame of Gums, and the like; all which are very different, not onely in their several tempers and degrees of heat, but also in their several manners of burning or flaming; for the flame of Aqua-vitae is far thinner and blewer, then the flame of Wax, Wood, Tallow, or the like; in so much, that there is as much difference between them, as there is between the Azure Skie, and a white Cloud; which shews, that the flame of spirituous bodies is more airy and rare then the flame of others: For Flame is onely the rare and airy part of fire, and there is a na­tural body of Fire, as well as of Air, Earth and Wa­ter; and as there are several sorts of Earth, Water and Air, so there are also several sorts of Fire; and as there are springs of Water, and springs of Air, so there may also be springs of Fire and Flame. But to return to the Sun; though I am not able certainly to determine of what substance it is, yet to our perception it appears not to be a fluid, but a solid body, by reason it keeps constantly the same exterior figure, and never appears either ebbing or flowing, or flashing, as lightning is; nor does the whole figure of its body dissolve and change into another figure; nevertheless, it being a na­tural creature, and consisting of self-moving parts, there is no question but its parts are subject to continual changes and alterations, although not perceptible by [Page 152] our sight, by reason of its distance, and the weakness of our organs; for although this Terrestrial Globe, which we inhabit, in its outward figure, nay, in its interior nature remains still the same; yet its parts do continual­ly change by perpetual compositions and dissolutions, as is evident, and needs no proof. The same may be said of the Sun, Moon, Stars and Planets; which are like a certain kind or species of Creatures; as for ex­ample, Animal or Man-kind; which species do always last, although their particulars are subject to perpetual productions and dissolutions. And thus it is with all composed figures or parts of Nature, whose chief action is Respiration (if I may so call it) that is, composition and division of parts, caused by the self­moving power of Nature.

34. Of Telescopes.

MAny Ingenious and Industrious Artists take much labour and pains in studying the natures and figures of Celestial objects, and endeavour to dis­cover the causes of their appearances by Telescopes, and such like Optick Instruments; but if Art be not able to inform us truly of the natures of those Creatures that are near us, How may it delude us in the scarch and enquiry we make of those things that are so far from us? We see how Multiplying-glasses do present nu­merous pictures of one object, which he that has not [Page 153] the experience of the deceitfulness of such Glasses, would really think to be so many objects. The like de­ceits may be in other optick Instruments for ought man knows. 'Tis true, we may perhaps through a Te­lescope see a Steeple a matter of 20 or 30 miles off; but the same can a natural Eye do, if it be not defective, nor the medium obstructed, without the help of any such Instrument; especially if one stand upon a high place: But put the case, a man should be upon the Alps, he would hardly see the City of Paris from thence, although he looked through a Telescope ne­ver so perfect, and had no obstruction to hinder his sight: and truly the Stars and Planets are far more di­stant from us then Paris from the Alps. It is well known, that the sense of sight requires a certain pro­portion of distance betwixt the Eye and the Object; which being exceeded, it cannot perform its office; for if the object be either too near, or too far off, the sight cannot discern it: and as I have made mention in my Philosophical Letters of the nature of those Guns, that according to the proportion of the length of the barrel, shoot either further or shorter; for the Barrel must have its proportioned length; which be­ing exceeded, the Gun will shoot so much shorter as the barrel is made longer; so may Prospective-glasses perhaps direct the sense of seeing within a certain com­pass of distance; which distance, surely the Stars and Planets do far exceed; I mean so, as to discern their [Page 154] figures as we do of other objects that are near us; for concerning their exterior progressive motions, we may observe them with our natural eyes as well as through Artificial Tubes: We can see the Suns rising and set­ting, and the progressive motion of the Moon, and other Planets; but yet we cannot see their natural fi­gures, what they are, nor what makes them move; for we cannot perceive progressive local Motion otherwise, then by change of distance, that is, by composition and division of Parts, which is commonly, (though improperly) called change of Place, and no glasses or tubes can do more. Some affirm, they have discovered many new Stars, never seen before, by the help of Telescopes; but whether this be true, or not, or whether it be onely a delusion of the glasses, I will not dispute; for I having no skill, neither in the art of Opticks, nor in Astronomy, may chance to err, and therefore I will not eagerly affirm what I do not cer­tainly know; I onely endeavour to deliver my judg­ment as reason directs me, and not as sense informs, or rather deludes me; and I chose rather to follow the guidance of regular Reason, then of deluding Art.

35. Of Knowledg and Perception in General.

SInce Natural Knowledg and Perception is the Ground and Principle, not onely of Philosophy both Speculative and Experimental, but of all other [Page 155] Arts and Sciences, nay, of all the Infinite particular actions of Nature; I thought it not amiss to joyn to the end of this part a full declaration of my opinion con­cerning that subject.

First, It is to be observed, That Matter, Self-motion and Self-knowledg, are inseparable from each other, and make Nature, one Material, self-moving, and self­knowing Body.

2. Nature being Material, is dividable into parts; and being infinite in quantity or bulk, her parts are infinite in number.

3. No part can subsist singly, or by it self, precised from the rest; but they are all parts of one infinite bo­dy; for though such parts may be separated from such parts, and joined to other parts, and by this means may undergo infinite changes by infinite compositions and divisions; yet no part can be separated from the body of Nature.

4. And hence it follows, That the parts of Na­ture are nothing else but the particular changes of par­ticular figures, made by self-motion.

5. As there can be no annihilation; so there can neither be a new Creation of the least part or particle of Nature, or else Nature would not be infinite.

6. Nature is purely corporeal or material, and there is nothing that belongs to, or is a part of Nature, which is not corporeal; so that natural and material, or cor­poreal, are one and the same; and therefore spiritual [Page 156] beings, non-beings, mixt beings, and whatsoever distinctions the Learned do make, are no ways belong­ing to Nature: Neither is there any such thing as an Incorporeal motion; for all actions of Nature are corporeal, being natural; and there can no abstraction be made of Motion or Figure, from Matter or Body, but they are inseparably one thing.

7. As Infinite Matter is divided into Infinite parts, so Infinite knowledg is divided into Infinite particular knowledges, and Infinite self-motion into Infinite par­ticular self-actions.

8. There is no other difference between self-know­ledg, and particular knowledges, then betwixt self­motion, and particular self-actions; or betwixt a whole, and its parts; a cause, and its effects: for self-know­ledg is the ground and principle of all particular know­ledges, as self-motion is the ground and principle of all particular actions, changes and varieties of natural figures.

9. As Infinite Nature has an infinite self-motion and self-knowledg, so every part and particle has a parti­cular and finite self-motion and self-knowledg, by which it knows it self, and its own actions, and perceives also other parts and actions; which latter is properly cal­led Perception; not as if there were two different Prin­ciples of knowledg in every particular Creature or part of Nature; but they are two different acts of one and the same interior and inherent self-know­ledg, [Page 157] which is a part of Natures infinite self-know­ledg.

10. Thus Perception, or a perceptive knowledg, belongs properly to parts, and may also be called an exterior knowledg, by reason it extends to exterior objects.

11. Though self-knowledg is the ground and prin­ciple of all particular knowledges and perceptions, yet self-motion, since it is the cause of all the variety of na­tural figures, and of the various compositions and divisions of parts, it is also the cause of all Percep­tions.

12. As there is a double degree of corporeal self­motion, viz. Rational, and Sensitive; so there is also a double degree of Perception, Rational, and Sensitive.

13. A whole may know its parts, and an Infinite a Fi­nite; but no particular part can know its whole, nor one finite part that which is infinite. I say, no particular part; for when parts are regularly composed, they may by a general Conjunction or Union of their particular knowledges and perceptions, know more, and so judg more probably of the whole, or of Infinite; and al­though by the division of parts, those composed know­ledges and perceptions, may be broke asunder like a ruined house or Castle, Kingdom or Government; yet some of the same Materials may chance to be put to the same uses, and some may be joined to those that formerly imployed themselves otherways: And hence [Page 158] I conclude, That no particular parts are bound to cer­tain particular actions, no more then Nature her self, which is self-moving Matter; for as Nature is full of va­riety of motions or actions, so are her parts; or else she could not be said self-moving, if she were bound to cer­tain actions, and had not liberty to move as she pleases: for though God, the Authour of Nature, has or­dered her so that she cannot work beyond her own na­ture, that is, beyond Matter; yet has she freedom to move as she will; neither can it be certainly affirmed, that the successive propagation of the several species of Creatures is decreed and ordained by God, so that Nature must of necessity work to their continuation, and can do no otherwise; but humane sense and reason may observe, that the same parts keep not always to the same particular actions, so as to move to the same spe­cies or figures; for those parts that join in the compo­sition of an animal, alter their actions in its dissolution, and in the framing of other figures; so that the same parts which were joined in one particular animal, may, when they dissolve from that composed figure, join se­verally to the composition of other figures; as for ex­ample, of Minerals, Vegetables, Elements, &c. and some may join with some sorts of Creatures, and some with others, and so produce creatures of different sorts, when as before they were all united in one particular Creature; for particular parts are not bound to work or move to a certain particular action, but they work [Page 159] according to the wisdom and liberty of Nature, which is onely bound by the Omnipotent God's Decree not to work beyond her self, that is, beyond Matter; and since Matter is dividable, Nature is necessitated to move in parts; for Matter can be without parts, no more then parts can be without a whole; neither can Na­ture, being material, make her self void of figure, nor can she rest, being self-moving; but she is bound to divide and compose her several parts into several particu­lar figures, and dissolve and change those figures again infinite ways: All which proves the variety of Nature, which is so great, that even in one and the same species, none of the particulars resemble one another so much as not to be discerned from each other.

But to return to Knowledg and Perception; I say they are general and fundamental actions of Nature; it being not probable that the infinite parts of Nature should move so variously, nay, so orderly and metho­dically as they do, without knowing what they do, or why and whether they move; and therefore all particu­lar actions whatsoever in Nature, as respiration, di­gestion, sympathy, antipathy, division, composition, pressure, reaction, &c. are all particular perceptive and knowing actions; for if a part be divided from o­ther parts, both are sensible of their division: The like may be said of the composition of parts. And as for Pres­sure and Reaction, they are as knowing and perceptive as any other particular actions; but yet this does not [Page 160] prove, that they are the principle of perception; and that there's no Perception but what is made by Pressure and Reaction, or that at least they are the ground of Animal Perception; for as they are no more but par­ticular actions, so they have but particular perceptions; and although all Motion is sensible, yet no part is sen­sible but by its own motions in its own parts; that is, no corporeal motion is sensible but of or by it self: There­fore when a man moves a string, or tosses a Ball; the string or ball is no more sensible of the motion of the hand, then the hand is of the motion of the string or ball, but the hand is onely an occasion that the string or ball moves thus or thus. I will not say, but that it may have some perception of the hand according to the nature of its own figure, but it does not move by the hands motion, but by its own; for there can be no motion imparted without matter or substance.

Neither can I certainly affirm, that all Perception con­sists in patterning out exterior objects, for although the perception of our humane senses is made that way, yet Natures actions being so various, I dare not conclude from thence that all the perceptions of the infinitely various parts and figures of Nature are made all after the same manner. Nevertheless, it is probable to sense and reason, that the infinite parts of Nature have not onely interior self-knowledg, but also exterior percep­tions of other figures or parts, and their actions; by reason there is a perpetual commerce and entercourse [Page 161] between parts and parts, and the chief actions of Na­ture are composition and division, which produce all the variety of Nature; which proves, there must of necessity be perception between parts and parts; but how all these particular perceptions are made, no par­ticular creature is able to know, by reason of their va­riety; for as the actions of Nature vary, so do the per­ceptions. Therefore it is absurd to confine all per­ception of Nature, either to pressure and reaction, or to the animal kind of perception, since even in one and the same animal sense; as for example, of seeing, there are numerous perceptions; for every motion of the Eye, were it no more then a hairs breadth, causes a several perception; besides, it is not onely the five organs in an animal, but every part and particle of his body that has a peculiar knowledg and perception, be­cause it consists of self-moving Matter: Which if so, then a Looking-glass that patterns out the face of a Man, and a Mans Eye that patterns again the copy from the Glass, cannot be said to have the same per­ception, by reason a Glass, and an animal, are dif­ferent sorts of Creatures; for though a piece of Wood, Stone, or Metal, may have a perceptive knowledg of Man, yet it hath not a Man's perception, because it is a Vegetable or Mineral, and cannot have an Animal knowledg or perception, no more, then the Eye patterning out a Tree or Stone, can be said to have a Vegetable or Mineral Perception; nay, when [Page 162] one Animal, as for example one man, perceives ano­ther, he doth not perceive his knowledg; for it is one thing to perceive the exterior figure of a Creature, and another thing to perceive its interior, proper, and in­nate actions; also it is one thing to perceive exterior objects, and another to receive knowledg; for no part can give away to another its inherent and proper parti­cular nature, neither can one part make it self another part; it may imitate some actions of another part, but not make it self the same part; which proves, that each part must have its own knowledg and perception, ac­cording to its own particular nature; for though se­veral parts may have the like perceptions, yet they are not the same; and although the exterior figures of some objects may be alike, yet the perceptions may be quite different; 'tis true, sensitive and rational knowledg is general and infinite in Nature; but every part being finite, can have but a finite and particular knowledg, and that according to the nature of its particular figure; for as not all Creatures, although they be composed of one Matter, are alike in their figures, so not all can have the like knowledges and perceptions, though they have all self-motion; for particular Creatures and acti­ons are but effects of the onely Infinite self-moving Matter, and so are particular perceptions; and although they are different, yet the difference of effects does not argue different causes; but one and the same cause may produce several and different effects; so that although [Page 163] there be infinite different motions in Nature, yet they are all but motions, and cannot differ from each other in being motions or self-moving parts; and although there be infinite several and different perceptions, yet they are all perceptions; for the effects cannot alter the cause, but the cause may alter the effects: Wherefore rational and sensitive corporeal motions cannot change from being motions, though they may change from moving thus, to move thus; nor perceptions from being perceptions, though they may change from being such or such particular perceptions; for the change is onely in particulars, not in the ground or principle which continues always the same. The truth is, as it is impossible that one figure should be another figure, or one part another part; so likewise it is impossible, that the perception of one part should be the perception of another; but being in parts, they must be several, and those parts being different, they must be different also: But some are more different then others; for the per­ceptions of Creatures of different sorts, as for example, of a Vegetable and an Animal, are more different then the perception of particulars of one sort, or of one com­posed figure; for as there is difference in their interior natures, so in their perceptions; so that a Mineral or Vegetable that perceives the figure of an Animal, has no more the perception of an Animal, then an Animal which perceives or patterns out the figure of a Mineral or Vegetable, has the perceptions of those Creatures; [Page 164] for example, when a man lies upon a stone, or leans on a tree, or handles and touches water, &c. although these parts be so closely joined to each other, yet their perceptions are quite different; for the man onely knows what he feels, or sees, or hears, or smells, or tasteth, but knows not what sense or perception those parts have; nay, he is so far from that, that even one part of his body doth not know the sense and perception of another part of his body; as for example, one of his hands knows not the sense and perception of his other hand; nay, one part of his hand knows not the per­ception of another part of the same hand; for as the corporeal figurative motions differ, so do particular knowledges and perceptions; and although sensitive and rational knowledg is general and infinite in in­finite Nature, yet every part being finite, has but finite and particular perceptions, besides, percepti­on being but an effect, and not a cause, is more vari­ous in particulars; for although all Creatures are com­posed of rational and sensitive Matter, yet their percep­tions are not alike; neither can the effect alter the cause; for though the several actions of sensitive and rational Matter be various, and make several perceptions, yet they cannot make several kinds of sensitive and rational Matter; but when as perceptions change, the parts of the sensitive and rational matter remain the same in themselves; that is, they do not change from being sen­sitive or rational parts, although they may make nu­merous [Page 165] perceptions in their particular parts, according to the various changes of self-motion.

But some may say, If the particular parts of one com­posed figure be so ignorant of each others knowledg, as I have expressed, How can they agree in some action of the whole figure, where they must all be imployed, and work agreeably to one effect? As for example; when the Mind designs to go to such a place, or do such a work; How can all the parts agree in the per­forming of this act, if they be ignorant of each others actions? I answer: Although every Parts knowledg and perception, is its own, and not anothers; so that every part knows by its own knowledg, and perceives by its own perception; yet it doth not follow from thence, that no part has any more knowledg then of it felf, or of its own actions; for, as I said before, it is well to be observed, that there being an entercourse and commerce, as also an acquaintance and agreement between parts and parts, there must also of necessity be some knowledg or perception betwixt them, that is, one part must be able to perceive another part, and the actions of that same part; for wheresoever is life and knowledg, that is, sense and reason, there is also per­ception; and though no part of Nature can have an absolute knowledg, yet it is neither absolutely ignorant, but it has a particular knowledg, and particular percep­tions, according to the nature of its own innate and in­terior figure. In short, as there are several kinds, [Page 166] sorts and particular perceptions, and particular igno­rances between parts, so there are more general percep­tions between some parts, then between others; the like of ignorance; all which is according to the various actions of corporeal self-motion: But yet no part can have a thorow perception of all other parts and their actions, or be sure that that part which it perceives has the like perception of it again; for one part may per­ceive another part, and yet this part may be ignorant of that part, and its perception; for example, my eye perceives an object, but that object is not necessitated to perceive my eye again; also my eye may perceive the pattern of it self made in a Looking-glass, and yet be ignorant whether the Glass do the like. Again, when two parts touch each other, one part may perceive the other, and yet be ignorant whether t' other does the like; for example, a man joins both his hands toge­ther; they may have perception of each other, and yet be ignorant of each others perception; and most commonly, one part judges of anothers perception by its own; for when one man perceives the actions of another man, he judges by those actions what percep­tions he has, so that judgment is but a comparing of actions; for as likeness of interior motions makes sym­pathy, so comparing of actions makes judgment, to know and distinguish what is alike, and what is not. Therefore perception of exterior objects, though it proceeds from an interior principle of self-knowledg, [Page 167] yet it is nothing else but an observation of exterior parts or actions; so that parts in their several com­positions and divisions may have several perceptions of each other, according to the nature of their figurative corporeal motions; and although each parts knowledg is its own, yet parts may have as much knowledg of each other, as they can perceive, or observe of each other; for the perceptive motions of one part, may inform themselves of the actions of other parts. The truth is, every particular part has its own motions fi­gures, sense and reason, which by a conjunction or composition of parts, makes a general knowledg; for as the division of parts causes a general obscurity, so composition of parts makes a general knowledg and understanding; and as every part has self-motion, so it has self-knowledg and perception.

But it is to be observed, That since there is a double perception in the infinite parts of Nature, sensitive and rational; the perception and information of the rati­onal parts is more general, then of the sensitive, they being the most prudent, designing and governing parts of Nature, not so much encumbred with labouring on the inanimate parts of matter as the sensitive: There­fore the rational parts in a composed figure, or united action, may sooner have a general knowledg and in­formation of the whole then the sensitive; whose know­ledg is more particular; as for example, a man may have a pain in one of the parts of his body, although [Page 168] the perception thereof is made by the sensitive corpo­real motions in that same part, yet the next adjoining sensitive parts may be ignorant thereof, when as all the rational parts of the whole body may take notice of it. Thus the rational parts having a more general acquain­tance then the sensitive, and being also the designing and architectonical parts, they imploy the sensitive parts to work to the same effect; but these are not always rea­dy to obey, but force sometimes the rational to obey them, which we call irregularity; which is nothing but an opposition or strife between parts; as for ex­ample, a man designs to imploy the exterior strength and action of his exterior parts; but if through irregu­larity the legs and arms be weak, the stomack sick, the head full of pain; they will not agree to the executing of the commands of the rational parts. Likewise the mind endeavours often to keep the sensitive motions of the body from dissolution; but they many times follow the mode, and imitate other objects, or cause a dis­solution or division of that composed figure by volun­tary actions.

Thus the sensitive and rational motions do often­times cross and oppose each other; for although several parts are united in one body, yet are they not always bound to agree in one action; nor can it be o­therwise; for were there no disagreement between them, there would be no irregularities, and conse­quently no pain or sickness, nor no dissolution of any natural figure.

[Page 169] And such an agreement and disagreement is not onely betwixt the rational and sensitive parts, but also betwixt the rational and rational, the sensitive and sensitive; for some rational Parts, may in one compo­sed figure have opposite actions; as for example, the Mind of Man may be divided so, as to hate one per­son, and love another; nay, hate and love one and the same person for several things at the same time, as also rejoice and grieve at the same time. For ex­ample, a man has two Sons; one is kill'd in the Wars, and the other comes home with victory and honour; the Father grieves for the slain Son, and rejoyces for the victorious Son: for the Mind being material, is di­vidable as well as composable; and therefore its parts may as well oppose each other, as agree; for agree­ment and friendship is made by composition, and dis­agreement by division; and sense and reason is either stronger or weaker, by composition or division, re­gularity or irregularity, for a greater number of parts may over-power a less; also there are advantages and disadvantages amongst parts, according to the several sorts of corporeal figurative motions; so that some sorts of corporeal motions; although fewer or weaker, may over-power others that are more numerous and strong; but the rational being the most subtil, active, observing and inspective parts, have, for the most part, more power over the sensitive, then the sensitive have over them; which makes that they, for the most [Page 170] part, work regularly, and cause all the orderly and regular compositions, dissolutions, changes and vari­eties in the infinite parts of Nature; besides, their per­ception and observation being more general, it lasts longer; for the rational continue the perception of the past actions of the sensitive, when as the sensitive keep no such records.

Some say, that Perception is made by the Ideas of exterior objects entering into the organs of the sentient; but this opinion cannot be probable to sense and rea­son; for first, If Ideas subsist of themselves, then they must have their own figures, and so the figures of the objects would not be perceived, but onely the figures of the Ideas. But if those Ideas be the figures of the ob­jects themselves, then by entring into our sensories the objects would lose them; for one single object can have no more but one exterior figure at one time, which surely it cannot lose and keep at one and the same time; But if it be a Print of the object on the Air, it is impos­sible there could be such several sorts of Prints as there are Perceptions, without a notable confusion. Besides: when I consider the little passages, as in the sense of touch, the pores of the flesh, through which they must enter, I cannot readily believe it; nay, the Motions and Prints would grow so weak, and faint in their jour­ney, especially if the object be a great way off, as they would become of no effect. But if their opinion be, that Ideas can change and alter, then all immaterial [Page 171] substances may do the same, and spirits may change and alter into several immaterial figures; which, in my opinion cannot be: for what is supernatural, is unalterable; and therefore the opinion of Ideas in per­ception, is as irregular, as the opinion of senseless atomes in the framing of a Regular World.

Again: Some of our Modern Philosophers are of opinion, That the subject wherein Colour and Image are inherent, is not the object or thing seen; for Image and Colour, say they, may be there where the thing seen is not: As for example, The Sun, and other vi­sible objects, by reflexion in Water or Glass; so that there is nothing without us really which we call Image or Colour; for the Image or Colour is but an appa­rition unto us of the motion and agitation which the object works in the brain or spirits, and divers times men see directly the same object double, as two Can­dles for one, and the like. To which I answer: That all this doth not prove that the object is not perceived, or that an object can be without image or colour, or that figure and colour are not the same with the object; but it proves, that the object enters not the eye, but is onely patterned out by the perceptive motions in the optick sense; for the reflection of the Sun in Water or Glass, is but a copy of the original, made by the figu­rative perceptive motions in the Glass or Water, which may pattern out an object as well as we do; which co­py is patterned out again by our optick perception, and [Page 172] so one copy is made by another. The truth is, Our optick sense could not perceive either the original, or copy of an exterior object, if it did not make those fi­gures in its own parts; and therefore figure and colour are both in the object, and the eye; and not, as they say, neither in the object, nor in the eye; for though I grant that one thing cannot be in two places at once, yet there may be several copies made of one original, in several parts, which are several places, at one and the same time; which is more probable, then that figure and colour should neither be in the object, nor in the eye, or according to their own words, that figure and colour should be there where the thing seen is not; which is to separate it from the object, a thing against all possibility, sense and reason; or else, that a substance­less and senseless Motion should make a progressive journey from the object to the sentient, and there print, figure and colour upon the optick sense by a bare agita­tion or concussion, so that the perception or apparition, (as they call it) of an object, should onely be accord­ing to the stroke the agitation makes; as for example, the perception of light after such a manner, figure after such, and colour after another; for if Motion be no substance or body, and besides void of sense, not know­ing what it acts; I cannot conceive how it should make such different strokes upon both the sensitive organ, and the brain, and all so orderly that every thing is per­ceived differently and distinctly. Truly this opinion [Page 173] is like Epicurus's of Atomes; but how absurd it is to make senseless corpuscles the cause of sense and reason, and consequently of perception, is obvious to every ones apprehension, and needs no demonstration.

Next, as Colour, according to their opinion, is not inherent any otherwise in the object, but by an ef­fect thereof upon us, caused by such a motion in the object; so neither, say they, is sound in the thing we hear, but in our selves; for as a man may see, so he may hear double or trebble by multiplication of Ec­choes, which are sounds as well as the Original, and not being in one and the same place, cannot be inhe­rent in the body; for the Clapper has no sound in it, but motion; and maketh motion in the inward parts of the Bell; neither has the Bell motion, but sound; and imparts motion to the air, the air again imparts motion to the ear and nerves, until it comes to the brain, which has motion, not sound; from the brain it rebounds back into the nerves outward, and then it becoms an apparition without, which we call sound. But Good Lord, what a confusion would all this produce, if it were thus! What need is there of imparting Motion, when Nature can do it a much easier way? I wonder how rational men can believe that motion can be imparted without matter: Next, that all this can be done in an instant: Again, that it is the organ of the sentient that makes colour, sound, and the like, and that they are not really inherent in the object it self. For [Page 174] were there no men to perceive such or such a colour, fi­gure or sound, can we rationally think that object would have no colour, figure nor sound at all? I will not say, That there is no pressure or reaction, but they do not make sense or reason; several parts may produce several effects by their several compositions, but yet this does not prove that there can be no perception but by pressure upon the organ, and consequently the brain, and that the thing perceived is not really existent in the object, but a bare apparition to the sentient; the Clapper gives no Motion to the Bell, but both the Clapper, and the Bell, have each their own Motion by which they act in striking each other, and the conjun­ction of such or such parts makes a real sound, were there no Ear to hear it.

Again: Concerning the sense of Touch, the heat, say they, we feel from the Fire, is in us; for it is quite different from that in the fire; our heat is pleasure, or pain; according as it is great or moderate; but in the Coal there is no such thing. I answer: They are so far in the right, that the heat, we feel, is made by the per­ceptive motions of, and in our own parts, and not by the fires parts acting upon us; but yet if the fire were not really such a thing as it is, that is, a hot and burning body, our sense would not so readily figure it out as it does; which proves, it is a real copy of a real object, and not a meer fantasme, or bare imparted motion from the object to the sentient, made by pressure and reaction; [Page 175] for if so, the fire would waste in a moment of time, by imparting so much motion to so many sentients; be­sides, the several strokes which the several imparted motions make upon the sentient, and the reaction from the sentient to the exterior parts, would cause such a strong and confused agitation in the sentient, that it would rather occasion the body to dissolve through the irregularities of such forced motions. But having dis­coursed enough of this subject heretofore, I will add no more, but refer both their and my own opinions, to the judicious and unpartial Reader; Onely concern­ing Fire, because they believe, it is the onely shining body upon Earth, I will say this: If it were true; then a Glow-worms tail, and Cats eyes, must be fire also; which yet Experience makes us believe other­wise.

As for Sleep, they call it a privation of the act of sense; To which I can no ways give my consent, be­cause I believe sense to be a perpetual corporeal self-mo­tion without any rest. Neither do I think the senses can be lockt up in sleep; for if they be self-moving, they cannot be shut up, it being as impossible to de­prive self-motion of acting, as to destroy its nature; but if they have no self-motion, they need no locking up at all; because it would be their nature to rest, as be­ing moveless. In short, sense being self-motion, can neither rest nor cease; for what they call cessation, is nothing else but an alteration of corporeal self-motion; [Page 176] and thus Cessation will require as much a self-moving Agent, as all other actions of Nature.

Lastly, say they, It is impossible for sense to imagine a thing past, for sense is onely of things present. I an­swer, 'tis true, by reason the sensitive corporeal motions work on and with the parts of Inanimate Matter; ne­vertheless, when a repetition is made of the same actions, and the same parts, it is a sensitive remembrance: And thus is also Experience made: which proves, there is a sensitive perception and self-knowledg; because the senses are well acquainted with those objects they have often figured or patterned out; and to give a further demonstration thereof, we see that the senses are ama­zed, and sometimes frighted at such objects as are un­usual, or have never been presented to them before. In short, Conception, Imagination, Remembrance, Ex­perience, Observation, and the like, are all made by coporeal self-knowing, perceptive self-motion, and not by insensible, irrational, dull, and moveless Mat­ter.

36. Of the different Perceptions of Sense and Rea­son.

HAving declared in the former discourse, that there is a double Perception in all Parts of Nature, to wit, Rational and Sensitive; some might ask, How these two degrees of Motions work; whether differently [Page 177] or unitedly in every part to one and the same percep­tion?

I answer: That regularly the animal perception of exterior objects, is made by its own sensitive, rational, corporeal and figurative motions; the sensitive pat­terning out the figure or action of an outward object in the sensitive organ; and the rational making a figure of the same object in their own substance; so that both the rational and sensitive motions work to one and the same perception, and that at the same point of time, and as it were by one act; but yet it is to be observed, that many times they do not move together to one and the same perception; for the sensitive and rational motions do many times move differently even in one and the same part; as for the rational, they being not incum­bred with any other parts of matter, but moving in their own degree, are not at all bound to work always with the sensitive, as is evident in the production of Fancies, Thoughts, Imaginations, Conceptions, &c. which are figures made onely by the rational motions in their own matter or substance, without the help of the sensitive; and the sensitive, although they do not com­monly work without the rational, yet many times they do; and sometimes both the rational and sensitive work without patterns, that is, voluntarily and by rote; and sometimes the sensitive take patterns from the rational, as in the invention of arts, or the like; so that there is no necessity that they should always work together to [Page 178] the same perception. Concerning the perception of exterior objects, I will give an instance, where both the rational and sensitive motions do work differently, and not to the same perception: Suppose a man be in a deep contemplative study, and some body touch or pinch him, it happens oft that he takes no notice at all of it, nor doth not feel it, when as yet his touched or pinched parts are sensible, or have a sensitive perception thereof; also a man doth often see or hear something without minding or taking notice thereof, especially when his thoughts are busily imployed about some o­ther things; which proves, that his Mind, or rational motions work quite to another perception then his sen­sitive do. But some perhaps will say, because there is a thorow mixture of animate (rational and sensitive) and inanimate matter, and so close and inseparable a union and conjunction betwixt them, it is impossible they should work differently, or not together: Be­sides, the alledged example doth not prove, that the rational and sensitive motions in one and the same part that is touched or pinched, or in the organ which hears or seeth, do not work together, but proves onely, that the sensitive motions of the touched part or organ, and the rational motions in the head or brain, do not work together; when as nevertheless, although a man takes no notice of another mans touching or pinching, the rational motions of that same part may perceive it. To which I answer: First, I do not deny that there is a [Page 179] close conjunction and commixture of both the rational and sensitive parts in every body or creatnre, and that they are always moving and acting; but I deny that they are always moving to the same perception; for to be, and move together, and to move together to the same perception, are two different things. Next, al­though I allow that there are particular, both rational and sensitive figurative motions in every part and par­ticle of the body; yet the rational being more obser­ving and inspective then the sensitive, as being the de­signing and ordering parts, may sooner have a general information and knowledg of all other rational parts of the composed figure, and may all unitedly work to the conceptions or thoughts of the musing and contem­plating man; so that his rational motions in the pinched part of his body, may work to his interior conceptions, and the sensitive motions of the same part, to the exte­rior perception: for although I say in my Philosophi­cal Opinions, that all Thoughts, Fancies, Imagi­nations, Conceptions, &c. are made in the head, and all Passions in the heart; yet I do not mean that all ra­tional figurative actions are onely confined to the head, and to the heart, and are in no other parts of the body of an Animal, or Man; for surely, I believe there is sense and reason, or sensitive and rational know­ledg, not onely in all Creatures, but in every part of every particular Creature. But since the sensitive organs in man are joined in that part which is named [Page 180] the head, we believe that all knowledg lies in the head, by reason the other parts of the body do not see as the eyes, nor hear as the ears, nor smell as the nose, nor taste as the tongue, &c. all which makes us prefer the rational and sensitive motions that work to those percep­tions in the mentioned organs, before the motions in the other parts of the body; when as yet these are no less rational or sensible then they, although the acti­ons of their sensitive and rational perceptions are after another manner; for the motions of digestion, growth, decay, &c. are as sensible, and as rational as those five sensitive organs, or the head; and the heart, liver, lungs, spleen, stomack, bowels, and the rest, know as well their office and functions, and are as sensible of their pains, diseases, constitutions, tempers, nourish­ments, &c. as the eyes, ears, nostrils, tongue, &c. know their particular actions and perceptions; for although no particular part can know the Infinite parts of Na­ture, yet every part may know it self, and its own acti­ons, as being self-moving. And therefore the head or brains cannot ingross all knowledg to themselves; but the other parts of the body have as much in the design­ing and production of a Creature, as the brain has in the production of a Thought; for Children are not produced by thoughts, no more then digestion or nou­rishment is produced by the eyes, or the making of blood by the ears; or the several appetites of the body by the five exterior sensitive organs; But although [Page 181] all, (interior as well as exterior) parts of the body have their particular knowledges and perceptions dif­ferent from those of the head and the five sensitive or­gans, and the heads and organs knowledg and percep­tion are differing from them; nevertheless, they have acquaintance or correspondence with each other; for when the stomack has an appetite to food, the mouth and hands endeavour to serve it, and the legs are wil­ling to run for it: The same may be said of other Ap­petites. Also in case of Oppression, when one part of the body is oppressed, or in distress, all the other parts endeavour to relieve that distressed or afflicted part. Thus although there is difference between the particular actions, knowledges and perceptions of every part, which causes an ignorance betwixt them, yet by reason there is knowledg and perception in eve­ry part, by which each part doth not onely know it self, and its own actions, but has also a perception of some actions of its neighbouring parts; it causes a ge­neral intelligence and information betwixt the parti­cular parts of a composed figure; which information and intelligence, as I have mentioned heretofore, is more general betwixt the rational then the sensitive parts; for though both the sensitive and rational parts are so closely intermixt that they may have knowledg of each other, yet the sensitive parts are not so gene­rally knowing of the concerns of a composed figure as the rational, by reason the rational are more free and [Page 182] at liberty then the sensitive, which are more incumbred with working on and with the inanimate parts of Mat­ter; and therefore it may very well be, that a man in a deep contemplative study doth not always feel when he is pinched or touched; because all the rational motions of his body concur or join to the conception of his mu­sing thoughts; so that onely the sensitive motions in that part do work to the perception of touch, when as the rational, even of the same part, may work to the conception of his thoughts. Besides, it happeneth oft that there is not always an agreement betwixt the rati­onal and sensitive motions, even in the same parts; for the rational may move regularly, and the sensitive ir­regularly; or the sensitive may move regularly, and the rational irregularly; nay, often there are irregu­larities and disagreements in the same degree of moti­ons, as betwixt rational and rational, sensitive and sen­sitive; And although it be proper for the rational to inform the sensitive, yet the sensitive do often inform the rational; onely they cannot give such a general in­formation as the rational; for one rational part can in­form all other rational parts in a moment of time, and by one act: And therefore rational knowledg is not onely in the head or brains, but in every part or particle of the body.

Some Learned conceive, That all knowledg is in the Mind, and none in the senses: For the senses, say they, present onely exterior objects to the mind; who [Page 183] sits as a Judg in the kernel or fourth ventricle of the brain, or in the orifice of the stomack, and judges of them; which in my apprehension is a very odd opinion: For first, they allow that all knowledg and perception comes by the senses, and the sensitive spirits; who like faithful servants run to and fro, as from the sensitive organs to the brain and back, to carry news to the mind; and yet they do not grant that they have any know­ledg at all: which shews, they are very dull servants, and I wonder how they can inform the mind of what they do not know themselves. Perchance, they'l say, it is after the manner or way of intelligence by Letters, and not by word of mouth; for those that carry Let­ters to and fro, know nothing of the business that inter­cedes betwixt the correspondents, and so it may be be­twixt the mind, and the external object. I answer: First, I cannot believe there's such a correspondence between the object and the mind of the sentient, or per­ceiver; for if the mind and the object should be com­pared to such two intelligencers, they would always have the like perception of each other, which we see is not so; for oftentimes I have a perception of such or such an object, but that object may have no percepti­on of me; besides, there's nothing carried from the ob­ject to the mind of the sentient by its officers the sensi­tive spirits, as there is betwixt two correspondents; for there's no perception made by an actual emission of parts from the object to the mind; for if Perception [Page 184] were made that way, not onely some parts of the ob­ject, but the figure of the whole object would enter through the sensitive organ, and presentit self before the mind, by reason all objects are not perceived in parts, but many in whole; and since the exterior fi­gure of the object is onely perceived by the senses, then the bare figure would enter into the brain without the body or substance of the object: which how it could be, I am not able to conceive; nay, if it were possible, truly it would not be hidden from the Minds officers the sensitive spirits, except they did carry it veiled or co­vered; but then they would know at least from whence they had it, and to whom and how they were to carry it. Wherefore it is absurd, in my opinion, to say, that the senses bring all knowledg of exterior ob­jects to the mind, and yet have none themselves; and that the mind chiefly resides but in one part of the bo­dy; so that when the heel is touched, the sensitive spi­rits, who watch in that place, do run up to the head, and bring news to the mind. Truly if the senses have no knowledg of themselves, How comes it that a man born blind cannot tell what the light of the Sun is, or the light of a Candle, or the light of a Glow-worms tail? For though some objects of one sense may be guessed by the perception of another sense, as we may guess by touch the perception of an object that belongs to sight, &c. yet we cannot perfectly know it except we saw it, by reason the perception of sight belongs [Page 185] onely to the optick sense. But some may ask, if a man be so blind, that he cannot make use of his optick sense, what is become of the sensitive motions in that same part of his body, to wit, the optick sensorium? I an­swer, The motions of that part are not lost, because the man is blind, and cannot see; for a privation or absence of a thing, doth not prove that it is quite lost; but the same motions which formerly did work to the percep­tion of sight, are onely changed, and work now to some other action then the perception of sight; so that it is onely a change or alteration of motions in the same parts, and not an annihilation; for there's no such thing as an annihilation in Nature, but all the variety in Na­ture is made by change of motions. Wherefore, to conclude, the opinion of sense and reason, or a sensi­tive and rational knowledg in all parts of Nature, is, in my judgment, more probable and rational, then the Opinion which confines all knowledg of Nature to a mans Brains or Head, and allows none neither to the Senses, nor to any part of Nature.

37. Several Questions and Answers concerning Know­ledg and Perception.

I Am not ignorant that endless questions and ob­jections may be raised upon one subject; and to answer them would be an infinite labour: But since I desire to be perspicuous in delivering my opinions, and [Page 186] to remove all those scruples which seem to obstruct the sense thereof, I have chosen rather to be guilty of pro­lixity and repetitions, then to be obscure by too much brevity. And therefore I will add to my former dis­course of knowledg and perception the resolution of these following questions, which, I hope, will render it more intelligible.

Q. 1. What difference is there between Self-know­ledg, and Perception?

I answer: There is as much difference betwixt them, as betwixt a whole, and its parts; or a cause, and its effects: For though Self-motion be the occasional cause of particular perceptions, by reason it is the cause of all particular actions of Nature, and of the variety of figures; yet self-knowledg is the ground or funda­mental cause of Perception; for were there not self­knowledg, there could not be perception, by reason perceptions are nothing else, but particular exterior knowledges, or knowledges of exterior parts and acti­ons, occasioned by the various compositions and divi­sions of parts; so that self-moving Matter has a percep­tive self-knowledg; and consisting of infinite Parts, those parts have particular self-knowledges and percep­tions, according to the variety of the corporeal figura­tive motions, which, as they are particular, cannot be infinite in themselves; for although a whole may know its parts, yet the parts cannot possibly know the whole; because an infinite may know a finite, but [Page 187] a finite cannot know an infinite. Nevertheless, when many parts are regularly composed, those parts by a conjunction or union of their particular self-know­ledges and perceptions of each other, may know more, and so judg more probably of infinite, as I have decla­red above; but as for single parts, there is no such thing in Nature, no more then there can be an Infinite part.

Q. 2. Whether the Inanimate Part of Matter, may not have self-knowledg as well as the Animate?

I answer: That, in my opinion, and according to the conceptions of my sense and reason, the Inanimate part of matter has self-knowledg as well as the Ani­mate, but not Perception; for it is onely the animate part of matter that is perceptive, and this animate mat­ter being of a two-fold degree, sensitive and rational; the rational not being incumbred with the inanimate parts, has a more clear and freer perception then the sensitive; which is well to be observed; for though the rational, sensitive, and inanimate parts of matter make but one infinite self-moving body of Nature, yet there are infinite particular self-knowledges, for Nature is divided into infinite parts, and all parts of Nature are self-knowing: But as all are not animate, so all are not perceptive; for Perception, though it proceeds from self-knowledg, as its ground or principle, yet it is also an effect of self-motion; for were there no self­motion, there would be no perception; and because [Page 188] Nature is self-moving, all her parts are so too; and as all her parts are moving, so they have all compositions and divisions; and as all are subject to compositions and divisions, so all have variety of self-knowledg; so that no part can be ignorant: And by reason self-knowledg is the ground and Principle of Perception, it knows all the effects by the variety of their changes; therefore the Inanimate part of Matter may, for any thing I know or perceive, be as knowing as the other parts of Na­ture; for although it be the grossest part, and so the dul­lest, wanting self-motion; yet by the various divisions and compositions which the animate parts do make, the inanimate may be as knowing as the animate.

But some may say, If Inanimate Matter were knowing of it self, then it would also be sensible of it self. I answer, Self-knowledg is so far sensible of it self, that it knows it self; and therefore the inanimate part of Matter being self-knowing, may be sensible of its own self-knowledg; but yet it is not such a sense as self-mo­ving matter has; that is, a perceptive sense; for the diffe­rence of animate and inanimate Matter consists herein, that one is self-moving, and consequently perceptive, but the other not; and as animate matter is self-moving as well as self-knowing, so it is the chief and architecto­nical part of Nature, which causes all the variety that is in Nature; for without animate Matter there could be no composition and division, and so no variety; and without inanimate Matter, there could not be such [Page 189] solid compositions of parts as there are; for the animate part of Matter cannot be so gross as the inanimate; and therefore without these degrees there would be no va­riety of figures, nor no composition of solid figures, as Animals, Vegetables, Minerals, &c. so that those effects which our sense and reason perceives, could not be without the degrees of animate and inanimate Mat­ter; neither could there be perception without animate Matter, by which all the various effects of Nature are perceived; for though one Creature cannot perceive all the effects, yet the infinite parts of Nature, by their infinite actions, perceive infinitely.

Again: Some may object, That if the Inanimate part of Matter have self-knowledg and sense, it must of necessity have life also. To which I answer: That the Inanimate part of Matter may have life, according as it hath sense and knowledg, but not such a life as the animate part of Matter has, that is, an active life, as to compose and divide the infinite body of Nature in­to infinite parts and figures, and to produce infinite va­rieties of them, for all this cannot be withont motion; nevertheless, it has so much life as to know it self, and so much sense as to be sensible of its own self-knowledg. In short, the difference between animate and inanimate Matter's life, sense and self-knowledg, is, that the ani­mate Matter has an active life, and a perceptive sense and self-knowledg, which the inanimate part of Matter has not; because it wants self-motion, which [Page 190] is the cause of all actions and perceptions in Na­ture.

Q. 3. Whether the Inanimate Matter could have parts without self-motion?

I answer, Yes: For wherefoever is body or matter, there are also parts; because parts belong to body, and there can be no body without parts; but yet were there no self-motion, there could be no various chan­ges of parts or figures. The truth is, Nature consi­dered as she is, and as much as our sense and reason can perceive by her various effects, must of necessity be composed or consist of a commixture of animate, both rational and sensitive, and inanimate matter; for were there no inanimate matter, there would be no ground or grosser substance to work on, and so no solid fi­gures; and were there no animate sensitive matter, there would be no labourer, or workman, as I may call it, to form the inanimate part of matter into various fi­gures; nor would there be such infinite changes, com­positions, divisions, productions, dissolutions, &c. as we see there are. Again: were there no animate rational Matter, there would be no designer or sur­veigher, to order and direct all things methodically; nor no Fancies, Imaginations, Conceptions, Memo­ry, &c. so that this Triumvirate of the degrees of matter, is so necessary a constitutive principle of all na­tural effects, that Nature could not be without it; I mean, Nature considered, not what she might have [Page 191] been, but as she is, and as much as we are able to per­ceive by her actions; for Natural Philosophy is no more but a rational inquisition into the causes of natural effects; and therefore, as we observe the effects and actions of Nature, so we may probably guess at their causes and principles.

Q. 4. How so fine, subtil and pure a part as the Ani­mate Matter is, can work upon so gross a part as the In­animate?

I answer; More easily then Vitriol or Aqua-fortis, or any other high extracts, can work upon metal, or the like; nay, more easily then fire can work upon wood, or stone, or the like. But you will say, That, according to my opinion, these bodies are not wrought upon, or divided by the exterior agent, as by fire, vitriol, &c. but that they divide themselves by their own inherent self-motion, and that the agent is no more but an occasion that the patient moves or acts thus, or thus. I answer, 'Tis very true: For there is such a com­mixture of animate and inanimate matter, that no particle in Nature can be conceived or imagined, which is not composed of animate matter as well as of inanimate; and therefore the patient, as well as the agent, having both a commixture of these parts of matter, none can act upon the other, but the patient changes its own parts by its own self-motion, either of its own accord, or by way of imitation. But the inanimate part of Matter considered in it self, or in its own narure, hath no self-motion, [Page 192] nor can it receive any from the animate; but they be­ing both so closely intermixt, that they make but one self-moving body of Nature, the animate parts of Mat­ter bear the inanimate with them in all their actions; so that it is impossible for the animate parts to divide, compose, contract, &c. but the inaimate must serve them, or go along with them in all such corporeal figu­rative actions.

Q. 5. How is it possible, that Parts being ignorant of each other, should agree in the production of a figure?

I answer: When I speak of Ignorance and know­ledg, my meaning is, not that there is as much ig­norance in the parts of Nature, as there is knowledg, for all parts have self-knowledg; but I understand a perceptive knowledg, by which parts do perceive parts; and as for the agreeing actions of parts, they cannot readily err, unless it be out of wilfulness to oppose or cross each other: for put the case the sensitive parts were as ignorant of perceptions as the inanimate, yet the ra­tional being thorowly intermixt with them, would cause agreeable combinations and connexions of parts in all productions, because they being not incumbred with the burthens of other parts, make more general perceptions then the sensitive, and moving freely in their own degree, there is a more perfect acquain­tance between them, then the sensitive parts; which is the cause that the rational design and order, when as the sensitive labour and work; I mean, when they [Page 193] move regularly, or to one and the same effect; for then they must needs move agreeably and unitedly: But because the sensitive parts are perceptive as well as the rational, and perceive not onely the rational adjoining parts, but also those of their own degree, they cannot so grosly err, as some believe, especially since the sensi­tive parts do not onely know their own work, but are also directed by the rational; but as I have often said, the several sorts, both of the sensitive and rational perceptions are well to be considered, which are as va­rious as the actions of Nature, and cannot be numbred, by reason every figurative action is a several perception, both sensitive and rational; and infinite Matter being in a perpetual motion, there must of necessity be in­finite figures, and so infinite perceptions amongst the infinite parts of Nature.

Q. 6. Whether there be single Self-knowledges, and single Perceptions in Nature?

I answer: If there can be no such thing as a single part in Nature, there can neither be a single self-know­ledg or perception; for body and parts can never be separated from each other, but wheresoever is body, were it an atome, there are parts also; and when parts divide from parts, at the same time, and by the same act, they are joined to other parts; so that composition and division is done by one act. The like for know­ledg: For knowledg, being material, consists of parts; and as it is impossible that there can be single parts, or [Page 194] parts subsisting by themselves, without reference to each other, or the body of Nature; so it is impossible that there can be single knowledges. Neither can there be a single magnitude, figure, colour, place, &c. but all that is corporeal, has parts; and by reason Na­ture is a self-moving, and self-knowing body, all her parts must of necessity be so too. But particular com­posed figures, and particular degrees of Matter, are not single parts, nor are particular actions single acti­ons, no more then a particular Creature is a single part; for it would be non-sense to say single compositions, and single divisions; and therefore particular and single are not one and the same; and as there can be no such thing as Single in Nature, so there can neither be single knowledges and perceptions: Which is well to be ob­served, lest we introduce a Vacuum in Nature, and so make a confusion between her parts and actions.

Q. 7. How is it possible, since there is but one Self­knowledg in Nature, as there is but one Self-motion, that there can be a double degree of this Self-knowledg, as also a double Perception, viz. Rational, and Sen­sitive?

I answer: As the several degrees of Matter are not several kinds of Matter; so neither are Rational and Sensitive knowledg several kinds of Self-knowledges, but onely different degrees of one self-knowledg; for as there is but one Matter, and one Self-motion, so there is also but one Self-knowledg in Nature; which con­sists [Page 195] of two degrees, Rational and Sensitive, whereof the rational is the highest degree of self-knowledg; for it is a more pure, subtile, active and piercing know­ledg then the sensitive, by reason it is not bound to work on and with the inanimate parts of Matter, but moves freely in its own degree, when as the sensitive is incum­bred with labouring on the inanimate parts of Matter: Indeed, there is as much difference between those two degrees of self-knowledg, as betwixt a chief Archi­tect, Designer or Surveigher, and betwixt a Labou­rer or Workman; for as the Labourer and Sur­veigher, though they be different particulars, are yet both of one kind, viz. Mankind: so it is likewise with self-knowledg; for were Matter divided into infinite degrees, it would still remain Matter; and though self-motion be divided into infinite degrees of motions, yet it is still but self-motion: The like for self-know­ledg: for self-moving matter can but know it self; and as Matter is the ground or constitutive Principle of all the parts and figures in Nature (for without matter there could be no parts, and so no division) and self­motion is the ground or principle of all particular acti­ons, so is self-knowledg the ground of all particular knowledges and perceptions. Again: as one part can­not be another part, so neither can one parts knowledg be another parts knowledg; although they may have perceptions of each other: When I speak of parts, I mean not single parts; for there can be no such thing [Page 196] as a single part in Nature; but by parts I understand particular self-moving figures, whether they be such composed figures, as, for distinctions sake, we call finite wholes; as for example, an Animal, a Tree, a Stone, &c. or whether they be parts of those finite figures; for it is impossible to describe or determine exactly what the parts of Nature are, by reason Nature, although it is but one body, yet being self-moving, 'tis divided into infinite figures, which by self-motion are infinitely changed, composed, dissolved, &c. which composi­tions and divisions hinder that there can be no single parts, because no part, though it should be infinitely changed, composed and divided, can be separated from the body of Nature, but as soon as it is divided from such parts, it is composed with other parts; nay, were it possible that it might be separated from the body of Nature, it would not be a part then, but a whole; for it would have no reference to the body of Nature: be­sides, if it continued body, or matter, it would still have parts; for wheresoever is body, there is a com­position of parts.

But if any one desires to know or guess at the parts of Nature, he cannot do it better then by considering the corporeal figurative motions or actions of Nature; for what we name parts, are nothing but the effects of those figurative motions; so that motions, figures and parts, are but one thing: and it is to be observed, that in composed figures there are interior and exterior [Page 197] parts; the exterior are those which may be perceived by our exterior senses, with all their proprieties, as colour, magnitude, softness, hardness, thickness, thinness, gravity, levity, &c. but the interior parts are the interior, natural, figurative motions, which cause it to be such or such a part or Creature; as for example, Man has both his interior and exterior parts, as is evident; and each of them has not onely their outward figure or shape, but also their interior, natu­ral, figurative motions, which did not onely cause them to be such or such parts; as for example, a leg, a head, a heart, a spleen, a liver, blood, &c. but do also continue their being; the onely difference is, that those figurative motions, which did first form or pro­duce them, afterwards, when they were finished, be­came retentive motions: By retentive motions, I do not onely mean such as keep barely the parts of the composed figures together, but all those that belong to the preservation and continuance of them; under which are comprehended digestive motions, which place and displace parts; attractive motions, which draw nourishment into those parts; expulsive moti­ons, which expel superfluous and hurtful parts; and many the like: for there are numerous sorts of re­tentive motions, or such as belong to the preservation and continuance of a composed figure, as well as there are of creating or producing motions. By which we may plainly see, that one figure lies within another; [Page 198] that is, one corporeal figurative motion is within a­nother, and that the interior and exterior parts or fi­gures of Creatures, are different in their actions; for ex­ample, the ebbing and flowing, or the ascending and descending motions of water, are quite different from those interior figurative motions that make it water; the like may be said of Vegetables, Minerals, Animals, and all other sorts of Creatures; nay, though both the interior and exterior parts, figures or motions do make but one composed figure or Creature, as for ex­ample, Man; and are all but parts of that same figure; yet each being a particular motion, has also its peculiar self-knowledg and perception; for the difference of particular knowledges and perceptions depends upon the difference of Natures actions; which as by the di­vision of parts, they cause an ignorance between them; so by composition they cause also perceptions. I do not mean, an interior or self-ignorance, which cannot be in Nature, by reason every part and particle has self-knowledg; but an exterior, that is, an ignorance of forreign parts, figures or actions, although they be parts of one composed figure; for the parts of the hand do not know the parts of the stomack, and their acti­ons. Neither do I mean an interior self-perception, which can neither be in Nature, because perception presupposes ignorance; and if there cannot be a self­ignorance, there can neither be a self-perception, al­though there may be an interior self-knowledg; Nor [Page 199] is it proper to say, a part may perceive it self, or have a perception of it self: But by perception, I mean an ex­terior or forreign knowledg; that is, a knowledg of other parts, figures, or actions. These perceptions, I say, are different, according to the difference of the corporeal figurative motions; for it is impossible, that such or such parts should have such or such perceptions, if they have not such or such corporeal motions. There­fore though all parts have self-knowledg, as well as self-motion, yet by reason all parts do not move alike, they cannot make the like perceptions; and though self-knowledg, as it is the ground and fountain, not onely of all particular knowledges, but also of all ex­terior perceptions, is but one in it self, as a fixt being, and cannot be divided from its own nature; (for as Mat­ter cannot be divided from being Matter, or self-mo­tion from being self-motion, so neither can self-know­ledg be divided from being self-knowledg; nor can they be separated from each other, but every part and particle of natural matter has self-knowledg and per­ception, as well as it hath self-motion) Yet all this hinders not, but there may be degrees of self-know­ledg according to the degrees of Matter; for as there is rational and sensitive matter, so there is also rational and sensitive self-knowledg; nay, there are infinite parti­cular self-knowledges and perceptions, according to the infiniteness of parts and motions; and yet all is but one self-moving and self-knowing Nature; for parts are [Page 200] nothing else but a division of the whole, and the whole is nothing else but a composition of parts. All which I desire may be taken notice of, lest my sense be mis­interpreted, for when I speak of rational and sensitive self-knowledg, I do not mean as if there were more self-knowledg then one in the onely infinite Matter, to wit, a double kind of self-knowledg, but I speak in re­ference to the parts of Matter; for the rational part is more pure, and so more agil, quick and free then the sensitive; and the animate part is self-knowing, but the inanimate not: and thus in respect to parts, as they are divided, so they have several self-knowledges and perceptions, as also numerous lives and souls in one composed figure or Creature; and as infinite parts be­long to one infinite whole, so infinite self-knowledges and infinite perceptions, belong to the infinite actions of those infinite parts. But some may ask, Why there are no more degrees of Matter but two, viz. Animate, and Inanimate; and no more degrees of Animate, but Rational, and Sensitive? I answer, humane sense and reason cannot conceive it possible there should be more or fewer; for the rational and sensitive are the purest degrees Matter can be capable of; and were there any purer then these, they would be beyond the nature of Matter; which is impossible, because Nature cannot go beyond it self. Again: some may perhaps desire to know, why there are more degrees of Inanimate Matter, then of Animate, to wit, of thickness and [Page 201] thinness, rarity and density, lightness aud heavi­ness, & c? I answer, These are nothing else but the actions of the material parts, and do not belong to the nature of Matter, so that they cannot make Parts less or more material, for all is but Matter; neither can they alter the nature of Matter; for Matter is still Mat­ter, however it moves. Lastly, some may ask, How it is possible, that such an infinite variety can proceed but from two degrees of Matter, to wit, Animate and Inanimate? I answer; As well as Infinite effects can proceed from one Infinite cause; for Nature being an Infinite body, must also have Infinite parts; and ha­ving an Infinite self-motion, must of necessity have an infinite variety of parts; and being infinitely self­knowing, must also have infinite self-knowing parts; which proves, that Natures body must of necessity consist of those two degrees, viz. Animate and Inani­mate Matter; for were there no Animate matter, which is corporeal self-motion, there would never be such variety of figures, parts and actions in Nature as there is, nor no perceptions; for Self-knowledg, or Matter, without self-motion, could never make any variety in Nature; and therefore although self-motion causes an obscurity by the division of parts, yet it causes also particular perceptions between parts; and as the mo­tions vary, so do perceptions of parts. In short, there is but one infinite body, and infinite parts; one infinite self­knowledg, and infinite particular self-knowledges; one [Page 202] infinite self-motion, and infinite particular actions; as also infinite particular perceptions: for self-motion is the cause of all the variety of Nature; and as one figure or part of Nature lies within another, so one perception is within another.

Q. 8. How can there be Self-knowledg and Percep­tion in one and the same part?

I answer: As well as the being or substance of a thing and its actions can consist together, or as a cause and its effects; for though they are so far different from each other, that the cause is not the effect, nor the ef­fect the cause; as also that the effect must of necessity depend upon the cause, but the cause may chuse whe­ther it will produce such or such effects; as for exam­ple, though action or motion depends upon matter, yet matter does not depend upon motion, as being able to subsist without it; and though perception depends up­on self-knowledg, yet self-knowledg does not depend upon perception; nevertheless, wheresoever is per­ception, there is also self-knowledg; by reason, that wheresoever there is an effect in act or being, there is also its cause; and although perception depends also upon outward objects, yet outward objects do not de­pend upon perceptions; but perception, as it depends upon self-knowledg, so it depends also upon self-motion; for without self-knowledg and self-motion, there would be no perception; so that both exterior perceptions, and all interior voluntary actions, proceed from self­knowing [Page 203] and self-moving matter; but the difference between particular interior self-knowledges and percep­tions, is caused by the changes of corporeal, figurative self-motion.

Q. 9. Whether particular Parts or Figures be bound to particular perceptions?

I answer: Particular Parts make Perceptions, according to the nature of their corporeal, figura­tive motions, and their perceptions are as nume­rous as their actions; for example, those parts that are composed into the figure of an Animal, make per­ceptions proper to that figures corporeal, interior, na­tural motions; but if they be dissolved from the animal figure, and composed into Vegetables, they make such perceptions as are proper for Vegetables; and being again dissolved and composed into Minerals, they make perceptions proper to Minerals, &c. so that no part is tied or bound to one particular kind of perception, no more then it is bound to one particular kind of figures; but when the interior motions of that figure change, the perceptions proper to that same figure change also; for though self-knowledg, the ground of all perceptions, is a fixt, and inherent, or innate knowledg, yet the perceptions vary according to their objects, and ac­cording to the changes and compositions of their own parts; for as parts are composed with parts, so are their perceptions; nay, not onely perceptions, but also par­ticular self-knowledges alter according to the altera­tion [Page 204] of their own parts or figures, not from being self­knowledg, for self-knowledg can be but self-knowledg, but from being such or such a particular self-knowledg; and since there is no part or particle of Nature but is self-knowing, or has its particular self-knowledg, it is certain, that as the interior nature of the figure alters by the changes of motion, the interior self-knowledg of that figure alters too; for if a Vegetable should turn into a Mineral, it cannot retain the self-knowledg of a Vegetable, but it must of necessity change into the self­knowledg of a Mineral; for nothing can have a know­ledg of it self otherwise then what it is; and because self­knowledg is the ground of Perception, as self-know­ledg alters, so doth perception; I mean, that kind of perception that belonged to such a figure, alters to another kind of perception proper to another figure; so that it is with perception, as it is with other Creatures: For example, as there are several kinds of Creatures, as Elements, Animals, Minerals, Vegetables, &c. so there are also several kinds of perceptions, as Animal, Vegetative, Mineral, Elemental perception; and as there are different particular sorts of these mentioned kinds of Creatures, so there are also of perceptions; nay, as one particular Creature of these sorts consists of different parts; so every part has also different per­ceptions; for self-motion, as it is the cause of all the various changes of figures and parts of Nature, so it is also of the variety of perceptions; for put the case [Page 205] Matter were of one infinite figure, it would have but self-knowledg, or at least no variety of perceptions, because it would have no variety of corporeal figura­tive motions; and it is well to be observed, that al­though numerous different parts may agree in per­ception; that is, their sensitive and rational figurative motions may all perceive one and the same object; yet the manner of their perceptions are different, ac­cording to the difference of their figures, or rather of their interior, corporeal, figurative motions: for ex­ample, a Man, a Tree, and a Stone, may all have per­ceptions of one object, but yet their perceptions are not alike; for the Tree has not an Animal or Mine­ral, but a Vegetative perception; and so has the Man, not a Vegetative or Mineral, but an Animal percep­tion; and the Stone, not an Animal or Vegetative, but a Mineral perception, each according to the in­terior nature of its own figure.

Q. 10. Whether there could be Self-knowledg without Perception?

I answer: Self-knowledg being the ground of all Perceptions, which are nothing else but exterior know­ledges, might as well subsist without them, as Matter would subsist without Motion; but since self-motion is the cause of all the various changes of figures and parts, and of all the orderly Productions, Generati­ons, Transformations, Dissolutions, and all other actions of Nature; These cannot be performed with­out [Page 206] Perception; for all actions are knowing and per­ceptive; and were there no perception, there could not possibly be any such actions; for how should parts agree either in the generation, composition or dissolu­tion of composed figures, if they had no knowledg or perception of each other? Therefore although self­knowledg is a fixt interior Being, and the ground of all perceptions; yet were there no self-motion, there could be no action, and consequently no perception, at least no variety of perceptions in Nature; but since Nature is one self-moving and self-knowing body, self-know­ledg can no more be separated from perception, then motion can be divided from matter, but every part and particle of Nature, were it an Atome, as it is self-mo­ving, so it is also self-knowing and perceptive. But yet it is not necessary that Perception must onely be be­twixt neighbouring or adjoining parts; for some parts may very well perceive each other at a distance, and when other parts are between; nay, some perceptions do require a distance of the object, as for example, the optick perception in Animals, as I have declared be­forePart 1. c. 20. Of Co­lours, p. 63., where I do mention the requisites of the Ani­mal perception of sight; whereof if one be wanting, there is either no perception at all, (I mean, no per­ception of seeing in that Animal) or the perception is imperfect. But some may ask, Whether, in such a case, that is, in the perception of an object which is distant from the sentient, the intermediate parts are as [Page 207] well perceived as the object it self, to which the percep­tion directy tends? I answer: That, if the interme­diate parts be subject to that kind of perception, they may as well be perceived as the object that is distant; nay, sometimes better; but most commonly, the in­termediate parts are but slightly or superficially per­ceived: For example, in the forementioned sense of Seeing, if the organ of sight be directed to some certain object that is distant, and there be some parts between the organ and the object, perceptible by the same sense, but such as do not hinder or obstruct the perception of the said object; not onely the object, but also those in­termediate parts will be perceived by the optick sense, Also if I cast my eye upon an object that is before me, in a direct line, the eye will not onely perceive the object to which it is chiefly directed, but also those parts that are joined to it, either beneath, or above, or on each side of that object, at the same point of time, and by the same act; the sole difference is, that the said object is chiefly and of purpose patterned out by the sensitive and rational figurative motions of the eye, when as the other intermediate or adjoining parts are but superfi­cially and slghtly looked over.

And this proves, first, that Nature is composed of sensitive, rational and inanimate matter, without any separation or division from each other; for could mat­ter be divided into an atome, that very atome would have a composition of these three degrees of matter; [Page 208] and therefore although the parts of Nature do under­go infinite divisions and compositions, so that parts may be composed and divided infinite ways; yet these three degrees can never be separated or divided from one another, because of their close union and commix­ture through infinite Nature.

Next it proves, that there can be no single parts in Nature; for what commonly are called parts of Na­ture, are nothing else but changes of motion in the in­finite body of Nature; so that parts, figures, actions, and changes of motion, are one and the same, no more differing from each other, then body, place, magni­tude, figure, colour, &c. for self-motion is the cause of the variety of figures and parts of Nature; without which, although there would nevertheless be parts, (for wheresoever is matter or body, there are parts also) yet Nature would be but a confused heap or Chaos, without the distinction of any perfect figures; which figures make perfect perceptions of perfect ob­jects; I say, of perfect objects; for if the objects be not perfect, the sensitive perceptions can neither be per­fect; but then the rational being joined with the sen­sitive, and being more subtil, active and piercing, may find out the error either of the object, or sense; for both the rational and sensitive parts being united in one figure or action, can more easily perceive the irregula­rities of each others actions, then of exterior objects; all which could not be, were there single parts in [Page 209] Nature, neither could such acts be performed by chance or sensless atomes; nay, could there be any single parts in Nature, there would consequently be a Vacuum to discern and separate them from each other, which Vacuum would breed such a confusion amongst them, as there would be no conformity or symmetry in any of their figures. Therefore I am absolutely a­gainst the opinion of senseless and irrational atomes, moving by chance; for if Nature did consist of such atomes, there would be no certain kinds and species of Creatures, nor no uniformity or order; neither am I able to conceive how there could be a motion by chance, or an irrational and senseless motion, no more then I can conceive how motion can be without matter or body; for self-motion as it is corporeal, so it is also sensitive and rational.

Q. 11. Whether Perception be made by Pattern­ing?

I answer: My Sense and Reason does observe, That the animal, at least humane Perception, performed by the sensitive and rational motions in the organs ap­propriated for it, is made by patterning or framing of figures, according to the patterns of exterior objects; but whether all other kinds and sorts of perceptions in the infinite parts of Nature be made the same manner or way, neither my self, nor no particular Creature is able to determine, by reason there are as many various sorts of perceptions as there are of other actions of Na­ture, [Page 210] and according as the corporeal figurative mo­tions do alter and change, so do particular perceptions; for Perception is a corporeal, figurative action, and is ge­nerally in all parts and actions of Nature; and as no part can be without self-motion and self-knowledg, so none can be without perception; and therefore I dare truly say, that all perceptions are made by figuring, though I cannot certainly affirm, that all are made by imita­tion or patterning. But it is well to be observed, that be­sides those exterior perceptions of objects, there are some other interior actions both of sense and reason, which are made without the presentation of exterior objects, voluntarily, or by rote; and therefore are not actions of patterning, but voluntary actions of figuring: As for example, Imaginations, Fancies, Conceptions, Passions, and the like; are made by the rational, cor­poreal, figurative motions, without taking any co­pies of forreign objects; also many Generations, Dis­solutions, Alterations, Transformations, &c. are made by the sensitive motions without any exterior patterns; for the generation of Maggot in a Cheese, of a Worm in the root of a Tree, of a Stone in the Bladder, &c. are not made by patterning or imitation, because they are not like their producers, but meerly by a volun­tary figuring; and therefore it is well to be observed, that figuring and patterning are not one and the same; figuring is a general action of Nature: for all corporeal actions are figurative, when as patterning is but a par­ticular [Page 211] sort of figuring; and although I observe, that some perceptions are made by patterning, yet I cannot say the same of all; neither are the interior voluntary actions made by patterning, but both the sensitive and rational motions frame such or such figures of their own accord; for though each part in the composition of a Creature knows its own work, and all do agree in the framing and producing of it; yet they are not necessi­tated always to imitate each other; which is evident, because the composition of one and the same Creature is various, and different by reason of the variety of its parts.

And this is the difference between exterior percep­tions, and interior voluntary actions; for though both are effects of self-knowledg and self-motion, yet per­ceptions are properly concerning forreign parts, fi­gures and actions, and are occasioned by them; but the voluntary actions are not occasioned by any out­ward objects, but make figures of their own accord, without any imitation, patterns or copies of forreign parts or actions; and as the figures and parts alter by their compositions and divisions, so do both interior and exterior particular knowledges; for a Tree, although it has sensitive and rational knowledg and perception, yet it has not an animal knowledg and perception; and if it should be divided into numerous parts, and these again be composed with other parts, each would have such knowledge and perception as the nature of their [Page 212] figure required; for self-knowledg alters, as their own parts alter; perception alters as the objects alter; fi­gures alter as the actions alter; and the actions alter as Nature pleases, or is decreed by God to work.

But I desire it may be observed, first, That although there are both voluntaay actions of figuring, and oc­casioned actions of perceiving exterior objects, both in sense and reason, whereof those I call interior, these ex­terior; yet both of them are innate and inherent acti­ons of their own parts, as proceeding from the ground and fountain of self-knowledg; and the reason why I call the voluntary actions interior, is, because they have no such respect to outward objects, at least are not oc­casioned by them as perceptions are, but are the own figurative actions of sense and reason made by rote; when as perceptions do tend to exterior objects, and are made according to the presentation of their figures, parts or actions.

Next, It is to be observed, That many times the rational motions take patterns from the sensitive volun­tary figures; As for example, in Dreams, when the sensitive motions make voluntary figures on the in­side of the sensitive organs, the rational take patterns of them, and again the sensitive do many times take pat­terns of the rational when they make figures by rote, as in the invention and delivery of Arts and Sciences; so that there is oftentimes an imitation between the ra­tional and sensitive motions; for the rational voluntary [Page 213] figures, are like exterior objects, to be patterned out by the sensitive perceptive motions; and the sensitive voluntary figures, are like exterior objects, to be pat­terned out by the rational perceptive motions; and yet all their perceptive actions are their own, and perform­ed inwardly, that is, by their own motions: Which proves, that by naming Perception an exterior acti­on, I do not mean that it is an action exteriously per­ceptible or visible; for if it were thus, then one part would presently know another parts perception, when and how it perceives; which we find it does not; for although a man perceives a Tree, or Stone, yet he does not know whether the Tree or Stone perceives him, much less what perceptions they make: but, as I said before, Perception I name an exterior action, because it is occasioned by an object that is without the perceiving parts; for although both sensitive and ra­tional perception are so closely intermixt, that none can be without the other in every part or particle of Nature, were it no bigger then what is call'd an A­tome; yet considered in themselves, they are without each other so far, that the rational perceptive part is not the sensitive, nor the sensitive the rational; or else they would not be several parts or actions, neither would there be any imitation betwixt them.

Lastly, I desire that notice may be taken, when I say that every action of Nature is perceptive; for since there are no single parts in Nature, but what­soever [Page 214] is body, consists of parts; there can neither be any such thing as a single action, that is an action of a single part; but in all natural actions there is a commerce, en­tercourse, or agreement of parts; which entercourse or agreement, cannot be without perception of knowledg of each other; Wherefore it must of neces­sity follow, that every action is perceptive, or that per­ception between parts is required in every action of Na­ture; nay, even in those which are called voluntary actions; for though the rational and sensitive parts of a composed figure, can make voluntary figures within themselves, without taking any patterns of forreign objects; yet those parts must needs know and perceive each other even in the composition or framing of their voluntary figures; so that exterior knowledg or per­ception, is as universal as self-motion; for wheresoever is self-motion, there is perception also. But it is well to be observed, first, That Perception or Perceptive knowledg is onely between Parts; Next, That although every action in Nature is perceptive, yet not every acti­on is the action of Perception properly so called; which Perception, in composed figures, at least in Animals, is an action of patterning out exterior parts or objects, performed by the rational and sensitive corporeal figu­rative motions in their proper organs; But there are In­finite other actions, which although they require per­ceptive parts, yet they are not such actions of Percep­tions as are made by Patterning out, or imitating out­ward [Page 215] objects; As for example, Respiration, Digesti­on, Contraction, Dilation, Expulsion, Generation, Retention, Dissolution, Growth, Decay, &c. Ne­vertheless, all those actions are perceptive; that is, the parts which perform those actions have perception of each other, or else they would never agree to produce such effects. The truth is, that even the action of Perception properly so called, presupposes many par­ticular perceptions between those parts that concur to the performance of that act; for it is impossible, that both the rational and sensitive parts in a composed fi­gure, should make the act of Perception, without they know and agree what they are to do, and how they are to perform it, as I mentioned before. And this is the reason, that I have madeN. 5. Of Pores. a difference between Percep­tion and Respiration, and called them different actions; not as if Respiration was not a perceptive action, or pre­supposes not knowledg and perception between those parts that make respiration; but it is not the action of Perception properly so called; as for example, the perception of Seeing, Hearing, Smelling, Tasting, &c. in Animals, but it is properly an action of drawing, sucking, breathing in, or receiving any ways outward parts; and of venting, discharging or sending forth inward parts: nevertheless, all this cannot be done without perception or knowledg, no more then without motion; for wheresoever is motion, there is perception also; and therefore Respiration is a [Page 216] perceptive action. In short, I desire it may be ob­served, 1. That there is Perception in every action, but that not every Perception is made by patterning. 2. That all self-moving parts are perceptive. 3. That Perception, Perceptive knowledg, and Exterior know­ledg are all one thing, and that I take them indifferent­ly. 4. That all voluntary actions, both of sense and reason, are made by perceptive parts; and therefore when I make a distinguishment between voluntary acti­ons, and perceptions; I mean the perceptions of a com­posed figure, and not the particular perceptive know­ledges between those parts that join in the act of such Perceptions, or in the making of voluntary figures.

But it may be objected, That if all motions be per­ceptive, they would be wholly imployed in nothing else but in making copies of exterior parts or objects.

My answer is, Although I say, that all motions are perceptive; yet I do not positively affirm, that all per­ceptions in Nature are made by Patterning or Imita­tion; for we are to consider, that there are as many different sorts of perceptions, as there are of motions; because every particular motion has a particular percep­tion; and though in a composed figure or Creature, some motions may work to the paterning out of exte­rior objects, yet all the rest may not do so, and be ne­vertheless perceptive; for like as a Man, or any other animal Creature, is not altogether composed of Eyes, Eares, Noses, or the like sensitive organs; so not all [Page 217] perceptive motions are imitating or patterning, but some are retentive, some expulsive, some attractive, some contractive, some dilative, some creating or produ­cing, some dissolving, some imitating or patterning, and so forth; and as there are degrees of parts and mo­tions, so some perceptions may be so much purer, finer, and subtiler then others, as much as pure Air is beyond gross Earth. The truth is, we cannot judg of Na­tures actions any otherways then we observe them by our own sensitive and rational perceptions; and since we find that the sensitive and rational motions in our sensitive organs do work by the way of patterning or imitation; we may surely conclude, that some percep­tions are made that way; but that all other perceptions in all natural parts or Creature should be after the same manner, would be too presumptuous for any particular Creature to affirm, since there are infinite several sorts of perceptions; and although we may justly and with all reason believe, that all parts of Nature are percep­tive, because they are self-moving and self-knowing; yet no particular Creature is able to judg how, and in what manner they perceive, no more then it can know how they move. And by this it is evident, how in one and the same organ of the eye, some motions or parts may work to the act of perception, properly so called, which is made by patterning out the figure of an exte­rior object; and other motions or parts may work to the retention of the eye, and preserving it in its being: [Page 218] others again may work to its shutting and opening, and others to its respiration, that is, venting of superfluous, and receiving of nourishing parts, which motions are properly subservient to the retentive motions, and hun­dreds the like; and yet all these motions are as know­ing and perceptive after their way, as those that work to the act of Perception, properly so called, that is, to the act of seeing, made by patterning or imitation. But it is well to be observed, That although the eye has the quickest action in the Perception of seeing; yet is this action most visible, not onely by its motions, but by the figures of the objects that are represented in the eye; for if you look into anothers eye, you will plain­ly perceive therein the picture of your own figure; and had other objects but such an optick perception as Ani­mals, they would, without question, observe the same. Some will say, Those figures in the Eye are made by reflection; but reflections cannot make such constant and exact patterns or imitations; Others believe it pro­ceeds from pressure and reaction; but pressure and re­action being but particular actions, cannot make such variety of figures. Others again say, That the spe­cies of the objects pass from the objects to the optick or­gan, and make figures in the air; but then the mul­titude of those figures in the air would make such a con­fusion, as would hinder the species's passing through; besides, the species being corporeal, and proceeding from the object, would lessen its quantity or bulk. Where­fore [Page 219] my opinion is, that the most rare and subtilest parts in the animal sensitive organs, do pattern out the figures of exterior objects, and that the perception of the exte­rior animal senses, to wit, sight, hearing, tasting, touching, smelling; is certainly made by no other way, then by figuring and imitation.

Q. 12. How the bare patterning out of the Exterior figure of an object, can give us an information of its Interior nature?

My answer is, That although our sensitive Percep­tion can go no further then the exterior shape, figure and actions of an object; yet the rational being a more subtil, active and piercing Perception, by reason it is more free then the sensitive, does not rest in the know­ledg of the exterior figure of an object, but by its exte­rior actions, as by several effects, penetrates into its inte­rior nature, and doth probably guess and conclude what its interior figurative motions may be; for al­though the interior and exterior actions of a composed figure be different, yet the exterior may partly give a hint or information of the interior; I say, partly, be­cause it is impossible that one finite particular Creature should have a perfect knowledg or perception of all the interior and exterior actions of another particular Crea­ture; for example, our sensitive Perception patterns out an Animal, a Mineral, a Vegetable, &c. we per­ceive they have the figure of flesh, stone, wood, &c. but yet we do not know what is the cause of their being [Page 220] such figures; for the interior, figurative motions of these Creatures, being not subject to the perception of our exterior senses, cannot exactly be known; ne­vertheless, although our exterior senses have no per­ception thereof, yet their own parts which are con­cern'd in it, as also their adjoining or neighbouring parts may: For example, a man knows he has a dige­stion in his body; which being an interior action, he cannot know by his exterior senses how it is made; but those parts of the body where the digestion is per­formed, may know it; nay, they must of necessity do so, because they are concerned in it, as being their pro­per imployment: The same may be said of all other particular parts and actions in an Animal body, which are like several workmen, imployed in the building of a house; for although they do all work and labour to one and the same end, that is, the exstruction of the house; and every onemay have some inspection or per­ception of what his neighbour doth; yet each having his peculiar task and employment, has also its proper and peculiar knowledg how to perform his own work; for a Joiner knows best how to finish and perfect what he has to do, and so does a Mason, Carpenter, Tiler, Glasier, Stone-cutter, Smith, &c. And thus it is with all composed figures or Creatures; which proves, That Perception has onely a respect to exterior parts or objects; when as self-knowledg is an interior, inhe­rent, inate, and, as it were, a fixt being; for it is the [Page 221] ground and fountain of all other particular know­ledges and perceptions, even as self-motion is the cause and principle of all other particular actions; and although self-knowledg can be without perception, yet perception cannot be without self-knowledg; for it has its being from self-knowledg, as an effect from its cause; and as one and the same cause may produce numerous effects, so from one self-knowledg proceed numerous perceptions, which do vary infinitely, ac­cording to the various changes of corporeal self-mo­tion. In short, self-knowledg is the fundamental cause of perception, but self-motion the occasional cause; Just like Matter and self-motion are the causes of all natural figures; for though Perception could not be without self-knowledg, yet were there no self-mo­tion, there would be no variety of figures, and con­sequently not exterior objects to be perceived.

Q. 13. How is it possible, that several figures can be patterned out by one act of Perception? for example, how can a man, when he sees a statue or a stone, pattern out both the exterior shape of the statue, the matter which the statue is made of, and its colour, and all this by one and the same act?

I answer, First it is to be observed, That Matter, Colour, Figure, Magnitude, &c. are all but one thing, and therefore they may easily be patterned out by one act of Perception at one and the same time. Next, I say, That no sense is made by one single part, but every sense consists of several parts, and therefore [Page 222] the perception of one sense may very well pattern out several objects at once; for example, I see an embroi­dred bed; my eye patterns out both the Velvet, Gold, Silver, Silk, Colour, and the Workmanship, nay, superficially the figure of the whole Bed, and all this by one act, and at one the same time. But it is to be observed, That one object may have several proprie­ties, which are not all subject to the perception of one sence; as for example, the smell of an odorife­rous body, and its colour, are not subject to the same sense; neither is the hardness or softness, roughness or smoothness of its parts, subject to the sense of smelling or seeing, but each is perceived by such a sense as is proper for such a sort of Perception. Nevertheless, these different perceptions do not make them to be dif­ferent bodies; for even one and the same attribute or propriety of a body may be patterned out by several senses; for example, Magnitude or shape of body may be patterned out both by fight and touch: which proves, that there is a near affinity or alliance betwixt the several senses, and that Touch is, as it were a ge­neral sense, which may imitate some other sensitive perceptions. The truth is, it is as easie for several sen­ses to pattern out the several proprieties of one body, as it is for several Painters to draw the several parts of one figure; as for example, of a burning Candle, one may draw the wax or tallow, another the wick, ano­ther the flame: The like for the Perceptions of se­veral [Page 223] senses; Sight may pattern out the figure and light of a Candle; Touch may pattern out its weight, hardness or smoothness; the Nose may pattern out its smell; the Ears may pattern out its sparkling noise, & c. All which does evidently prove, That Perception can­not be made by pressure and reaction; or else a fire coal by the perception of sight, would burn out the eye, be­cause it would by pressure inflame its next adjoining parts, and these again the next, until it came to the eye. Besides, it proves that all objects are material; for were Light, Colour, Figure, Heat, Cold, & c. im­material, they would never be patterned out by cor­poreal motions; for no Painter is able to copy out, or draw an immaterial mode or motion; Neither could immaterial motions make pressure, nor be subject to reaction. Lastly, it proves, That Perception is an effect of knowledg in the sentient, and not in the exter­nal object; or else there would be but one knowledg in all parts, and not several knowledges in several parts; whereof sense and reason inform us otherwise, viz. that particular figures have variety of knowledges, ac­cording to the difference and variety of their corporeal figurative motions.

But then some will say, That the actions of Matter would be more infinite then the parts. I answer; There can be neither more nor less in infinite: For in­finite can be but infinite; but since parts, figures, changes of motion and perceptions, are one and the same; and [Page 224] since division and composition are the chief actions of Nature, it does necessarily follow, That as the actions vary, so do also their parts and particular percep­tions.

Q. 14. How is it possible that any Perception of out­ward objects can be made by patterning, since patterning doth follow perception; for how can any one pattern out that which he has no perception of?

I answer: Natural actions are not like Artificial; for Art is but gross and dull in comparison to Nature; and although I alledg the comparison of a Painter, yet is it but to make my meaning more intelligible to weaker capacities; for though a Painter must see or know first what he intends to draw or copy out; yet the natural perception of exterior objects is not altogether after the same manner; but in those perceptions which are made by patterning, the action of patterning, and the perception, are one and the same; for as self-know­ledg is the ground of Perception, so self-motion is the action of Perception, without which no perception could be, and therefore perception and self-action are one and the same. But I desire, that it may well be ob­served what I have mentioned heretofore, to wit, That although there is but one self-knowledg, and one self­motion in Nature, yet they being material, are divide­able; and therefore as from one infinite cause, there may flow infinite effects, and one infinite whole may be divided into infinite parts; so from one infinite self­knowledg [Page 225] and self-motion there may proceed infinite particular actions and perceptions.

But some may perhaps ask, 1. Why those particu­lar knowledges and perceptions are not all alike, as be­ing all but effects of one cause? To which I answer, That if the actions or motions of Nature were all alike, all parts would have the like knowledges and percep­tions; but the actions being different, how can it be otherwise, but the perceptions must be different also? for since every perception is a particular self-action, then as the actions of Nature vary, and as parts do divide and compose, so are likewise their perceptions.

2. It may be objected, That if the Perception of the exterior senses in animals be made by the way of pat­terning, then when a part of the body feels pain, the rational motions by patterning out the same, would be pained, or sick.

I answer: This does no more follow, then that the Eye patterning out the exterior figure of Water, Fire, Earth, & c. should become of the same nature; for the original is one thing, and the copy another: the pi­cture of a house of stone, is not made of natural stone, nor is the picture of a Tree, a natural Tree; for if it were so, Painters would do more then Chymists by fire and furnace; but by reason there is a very close conjunction between the rational and sensitive percep­tive motions, so that when the sensitive motions of the body pattern out some exterior object, the rational [Page 226] most commonly do the same; That which we call pain or sickness in the body, when patterned out by the mind, is called trouble, or grief; for as there are degrees in their purity, subtilty and activity, so their perceptions are also different. But it is well to be observed, That although some parts are ignorant of others, when they work not to one and the same perception, yet sometimes there is a more general knowledg of a disease, pain, or soreness; for example, a man may have an inflamation or soreness in one part of his arm or leg, and all the rest of the parts of that limb may be ignorant thereof; but if the inflamation, soreness or pain, extend throughout the whole arm or leg, then all the parts of that limb are generally sensible of it.

3. It may be objected, That if the rational percep­tive motions take patterns from the sensitive, then rea­son can never judg of things as naturally they are, but onely of their copies, as they are patterned out by the sensitive motions.

I answer, first, That reason is not so necessitated, as to have no other perception then what sense presents; for Reason is the instructer and informer of sense, as an architect or surveigher is in the extruction of a house. Next, I say, That in the act of Perception, Reason doth not onely perceive the copies of the senses, but it perceives with the sense also the original; for surely the rational part of Matter, being intermixed with the sensitive, must perceive as well the original, as sense [Page 227] doth; for it is not so involved within the sensitive; that it cannot peep out, as a Jack-in-a-Box; but both being closely intermixed, one makes perceptions as well as the other, as being both perceptive; and by reason the rational part makes the same perception as the sensitive doth, it seemeth as if the rational did take co­pies from the sensitive; which although it doth, yet this doth not hinder it from making a perception also of the original.

But then some may say, if the rational Part has li­berty to move as it will, then it may perceive without sense; that is, Reason may make perceptions of out­ward objects in the organs of the senses, when the sen­ses make none; as for example, the rational motions in the eye may perceive light, when the sensitive do not; and sound in the ear, when the sensitive do not.

To which I answer; 'Tis probable, that the rational do many times move to other perceptions then the sen­sitive; as I have often declared; but if their actions be orderly and regular, then most commonly they move to one and the same perception; but reason being the purer and freer part, has a more subtil perception then sense; for there is great difference between sense and reason, concerning the subtilty of their actions; sense does perceive, as it were, in part, when as reason perceives generally, and in whole; for if there be an object which is to be patterned out with all its proprie­ties, the colour of it is perceived onely by sight; the [Page 228] smell of it is perceived by the Nose; its Sound is per­ceived by the Ear, its taste is perceived by the Tongue, and its hardness or softness, coldness or heat, dryness or moisture, is perceived by Touch; so that every sense in particular, patterns out that object which is pro­per for it; and each has but so much knowledg of the said object as it patterns out; for the sight knows no­thing of its taste, nor the taste of its touch, nor the touch of its smell; and so forth: But the mind patterns out all those figures together, so that they are but as one object to it, without division: which proves, that the rational perception, being more general, is also more perfect then the sensitive; and the reason is, because it is more free, and not incumbred with the burdens of other parts; Wherefore the rational can judg better of objects then the sensitive, as being more know­ing; and knows more, because it has a more general perception; and hath a more general perception, be­cause it is more subtile and active; and is more subtil and active, because it is free, and not necessitated to la­bour on, or with any other parts.

But some may say, How is it possible, that the ratio­nal part, being so closely intermixed with the sensitive and the inanimate, can move by it self, and not be a labourer, as well as the sensitive?

I answer: The reason is, because the rational part is more pure and finer then the sensitive, or any other part of Matter; which purity and fineness makes that [Page 229] it is so subtile and active, and consequently not neces­sitated to labour with, or on other parts.

Again: Some may ask, Whether those intermix­ed parts continue always together in their particulars? as for example, whether the same rational parts keep constantly to the same sensitive and inanimate parts, as they are commixed?

I answer: Nature is in a perpetual motion, and her parts are parts of her own self-moving body; where­fore they must of necessity divide and compose; but if they divide and compose, they cannot keep constant­ly to the same parts. Nevertheless, although particular parts are divideable from each other, yet the Trium­virate of Nature, that is, the three chief degrees or parts of Matter, to wit, rational, sensitive and inanimate, which belong to the constitution of Nature, cannot be separated or divided from each other in general; so that rational matter may be divided from sensitive and inani­mate, and these again from the rational, but they must of necessity continue in this commixture as long as Na­ture lasts. In short, rational, sensitive and inanimate Matter are divideable in their particulars; that is, such a particular part of inanimate Matter is not bound to such a particular part of sensitive or rational Mat­ter, &c. but they are individeable in general, that is, from each other; for wheresoever is body, there is also a commixture of these three degrees of Matter.

4. Some may say, How is it possible, That Rea­son [Page 230] can be above Sense; and that the rational percep­tion is more subtile and knowing then the sensitive; since in my Philosophical Opinions, I have declared that the sensitive perception doth inform the rational: or that Reason perceives by the information of the senses?

To which I answer: My meaning is not, that Rea­son has no other perception, but by the information of the senses; for surely the rational perception is more subtile, piercing and penetrating, or inspective, then the sensitive, and therefore more intelligent and know­ing; but when I say, that sense informs reason, I speak onely of such perceptions where the rational figurative motions take patterns from the sensitive, and do not work voluntarily, or by rote.

Besides, It is to be observed, That in the mentioned Book, I compare Thoughts, which are the actions of the rational figurative motions, to the sensitive Touch; so that Touch is like a Thought in sense, and Thought like a Touch in reason: But there is great difference in their purity; for though the actions of Touch and Thought are much after the same manner, yet the different degrees of sense and reason, or of animate, sen­sitive and rational matter, cause great difference between them; and as all sensitive perception is a kind of touch, so all rational perception is a kind of thoughtfulness: But mistake me not when I say, Thought is like Touch; for I do not mean, that the rational perception is cau­sed by the conjunction or joining of one part to ano­ther, [Page 231] or that it is an exterior touch, but an interior knowledg; for all self-knowledg is a kind of thought­fulness, and that Thought is a rational Touch, as Touch is a sensitive Thought; for the exterior percep­tions of reason resemble the interior actions or know­ledg of sense. Neither do I mean, that the percep­tion of touch is made by pressure and reaction, no more then the perception of sight, hearing, or the like; but the patterns of outward objects being actions of the bo­dy sentient, are, as it were, a self-touch, or self-feeling, both in the sensitive and rational perceptions. Indeed that subtile and learned Philosopher, who will per­swade us that Perception is made by pressure and reacti­on, makes Perception onely a fantasme: For, says he, Reaction makes a Fantasme, and that is Perception.

5. Some perhaps will say, That if the Perception of the exterior animal senses be made by Patterning, then that animal which hath two or more eyes, by pattern­ing out an exterior object, will have a double or trebble perception of it, according to the number of its eyes.

I answer: That when the corporeal motions in each eye move irregularly; as for example, when one eye moves this, and the other another way, or when the eyes look asquint; then they do not pattern out the object directly as they ought; but when the eyes move regularly, then they pattern out one and the same object alike, as being fixt but upon one point; and the proof thereof is, if there be two eyes, we may observe that [Page 232] both have their perceptions apart, as well as jointly; because those parts that are in the middle of each eye, do not make at the same time the same perceptions with those that are the side or extream parts thereof, but their perceptions are different from each other: For ex­ample, the eyes of a Man, or some other Animal, pat­tern out a Tree which stands in a direct line opposite to them; but if there be Meadows or Hedges on each side of the Tree, then the extream or side parts of each eye pattern out those meadows or hedges; for one eyes perception, is not the other eyes perception; which makes them perceive differently, when otherwise they would perceive both alike. But if a thousand eyes do perceive one object just alike, then they are but as one eye, and make but one perception; for like as many parts do work or act to one and the same design; so do several corporeal motions in one eye, pattern out one object; the onely difference is, that, as I said, every eye is ignorant of each others perception.

But, you'l say, There are so many copies made, as there are objects.

I answer, 'Tis true: But though there are many com­posed parts which join in the making of one particular perception; yet if they move all alike, the perception is but one and the same: for put the case there were a hundred thousand copies of one original; if they be all alike each other, so as not to have the least difference betwixt them; then they are all but as one Picture of [Page 233] one Original; but if they be not alike each other, then they are different Pictures, because they represent dif­ferent faces. And thus for a matched pair of eyes in one Creature; if they move at the same point of time, directly to one and the same parts, in the same design of patterning out one and the same object; it seems but as one act of one part, and as one perception of one object.

Q. 15. How comes it, that some parts, for all they are Perceptive, can yet be so ignorant of each other, that in one composed figure, as for example, in the finger of a Man's hand, they are ignorant of each other; when as other parts do make perceptions of one another, at a great distance, and when other parts are between?

I answer: This question is easily resolved, if we do but consider, that the differerence of Perception de­pends upon the difference of the corporeal figurative motions; for if the parts be not the same, the percep­tions must needs be different; nay, there may infinite several perceptions be made by one and the same parts; if Matter be eternal, and perpetually moving. And hence it follows, that some parts may make percepti­ons of distant parts, and not of neighbouring parts; and others again may make perceptions of neigh­bouring or adjoining parts, and not of those that are distant: As for example, in the animal Perception, taste and touch are onely perceptions of adjoining objects, when as sight and hearing do perceive at a [Page 234] distance; for if an object be immediately joined to the optick sense, it quite blinds it. Wherefore it is well to be observed, that there are several kinds and sorts of Perceptions, as well as of other composed figures: As for example, there are Animals, Vegetables, Mine­rals, and Elements; and these comprehend each se­veral particular kinds of Animals, Vegetables, Mine­rals, &c. Again, these particular kinds are divided into several sorts, and each of them contains so many parti­culars; nay, each particular has so many different parts, of which it consists, and each part has its diffe­rent particular motions. The same may be said of Per­ceptions: For as the several compositions of several parts are, so are they: not that the bare composition of the parts and figures is the cause of Perception; but the self-knowing and self-moving parts compose themselves into such or such figures; and as there are proprieties belonging to such compositions, so to such composed perceptions; so that the composed parts at the end of a finger, may not have the same perceptions with the middle parts of the same finger.

But some may say, If there be such ignorance be­tween the parts of a composed figure, How comes it, that many times the pain of one particular part, will cause a general distemper throughout all the body?

I answer; There may be a general perception of the irregularities of such particular composed parts in the other parts of the body, although they are not irregular [Page 235] themselves; for if they had the same compositions, and the same irregularities as the distempered parts, they would have the same effects; that is, pain, sickness, or numbness, &c. within themselves; but to have a perception of the irregularities of other parts, and to be irregular themselves, are different things. Never­theless, some parts moving irregularly, may occa­sion other parts to do the same. But it is well to be ob­served, That adjoining parts do not always imitate each other, neither do some parts make perceptions of for­reign objects so readily as others do; as for example, a man plays upon a Fiddle, or some other instrument, and there are hundreds, or more to hear him; it hap­pens oft, that those at a further distance do make a per­fecter perception of that sound, then those which are near; and oftentimes, those that are in the middle, as between those that are nearest, and those that are fur­thest off, may make a perfecter perception then all they; for though all parts are in a perpetual motion, yet all parts are not bound to move after one and the same way; but some move slower, some quicker, some livelier, some duller; and some parts do move so irre­gularly as they will not make perceptions of some ob­jects, when as they make perceptions of others; and some will make perfect perceptions of one and the same objects at some times, and not at other times: As for example, some men will hear, see, smell, taste, &c. more perfectly at some, then at other times. And [Page 236] thus to repeat what I said before, The several kinds, sorts and particulars of Perceptions, must well be con­sidered; as also, that the variety of Nature proceeds but from one cause, which is self-knowing and self­moving Matter.

Q. 16. Why a Man's hand, or any other part of his body, has not the like Perception as the eye, the ear, or the nose, &c. because there are sensitive and rational mo­tions in all the parts of his body?

I answer: The reason why the same perception that is within the eye cannot be in the hand, or in any o­ther part of a mans body, is, that the parts of the hand are composed into another sort of figure then the eyes, ears, nose, &c. are; and the sensitive motions make perceptions according to the compositions of their parts; and if the parts of the hand should be di­vided and composed with other parts, into another fi­gure; as for example, into the figure of an eye, or ear, or nose; then they would have the perception of seeing, hearing and smelling; for perceptions are ac­cording to the composition of parts, and the changes of Natures self-motions.

But then some will say, perhaps, That an Artificial eye, or ear, will have the same perceptions, &c. being of the same figure.

I answer: That if its interior nature, and the compo­sition of its parts were just the same as its exterior figure; as for example, if an artificial eye, or ear, were of [Page 237] animal flesh, and the like; it would have the like per­ception, otherways not.

Q. 17. How do we perceive Light, Fire, Air, & c?

I answer: By their exterior figures, as we do other objects: As for example, my Eye patterns out the exterior figure of Light, and my Touch patterns out the exterior figure of Heat, &c.

But then you will say, If the Eye did pattern out the figure of Light, it would become Light it self; and if Touch did pattern out the figure of Heat, it would become Fire.

I answer: No more then when a Painter draws Fire or Light, the copy should be a natural Fire or Light. For there is difference betwixt the copy, and the original: and it is to be observed, that in the Perception of sense, especially of sight, there must be a certain distance betwixt the object, and the sentient parts; for the further those are from each other, the weaker is the perception, by reason no corporeal fi­gurative motion is infinite, but finite; and therefore it can have but fueh a degree of power, strength, or acti­vity as belongs to such a figurative action, or such a part or degree of Matter. But as for Fire and Light, it is a certain and evident proof, that some perceptions, at least those of the exterior animal senses, are made by patterning; for though the nature of Fire and of Light (for any thing we know) be ascending, yet if Fire be made in such a manner, that several may stand about, [Page 238] underneath, and above it; yet they all have the per­ception of the heat of fire, in what place soever, provi­ded they stand within a limited or determinate compass of it: I say, of the heat which is the effect of fire; for that is onely patterned out, and not the substance of the flame or fire it self: But on the contrary, if the heat of the fire did actually and really spread it self out to all the places nominated, as well downwards, upwards and sideways; then certainly it would be wasted in a little time, and leave its cause, which is the fire, heatless. Besides, that there are Copies and Originals, and that some perceptions are made by patterning, is evident by the appearance of one Candle in several distances, which several appearances can be nothing else, but several co­pies of that Candle made by those parts that take pat­terns from the Original; which makes me also believe, that after the same manner, many Stars which we take for Originals, may be but so many copies or patterns of one Star, made by the figurative motions of those parts where they appear.

Q. 18. Whether the Optick Perception is made in the Eye, or Brain, or in both?

I answer: The perception of Sight, when awake, is made on the outside of the Eye, but in sleep on the in­side; and as for some sorts of Thoughts or Concep­tions, which are the actions of reason, they are to my apprehension made in the inner part of the head, al­though I am not able to determine properly what part [Page 239] it is; for all the body is perceptive, and has sense and reason, and not onely the head; the onely difference is, that the several actions of several parts, cause several sorts of perceptions; and the rational parts being the most active, and purest, and moving within themselves, can make more figures in the same compass or magnitude, and in a much shorter time then the sensitive, which being burthened with the inanimate parts, cannot act so agily and freely: Neverthess, some of the sensi­tive actions are much agiler and nimbler then others, as we may perceive in several sorts of productions. But the rational parts being joined with the sensitive in the exterior parts of a figure, do, for the most part, work together with the same; otherwise, when they move by themselves in Thoughts, Conceptions, Remembrance, and the like; they are more inward, as within the head; for there are Perceptions of interior parts, as well as of exterior; I mean, within a composed figure, by rea­son all parts are perceptive: Neither does this prove, that if there be so many perceptions in one composed figure, there must be numerous several perceptions of one object in that same figure; for every part knows its own work, or else there would be a confusion in Natures actions: Neither are all perceptions alike, but as I said, according as the several actions are, so are the perceptions.

Q. 19. What is the reason, that the nearer a stick or finger is held against a Concave-glass, the more does the pattern of [Page 240] it, made by the glass, appear to issue out of the glass, and meet with the object that is without it?

I answer: 'Tis not that something really issues out of the Glass; but as in a plain Looking-glass, the further the object goes from it, the more does its copy or image seem to be within the glass: So, in the same manner does the length of the stick, which is the mea­sure of the object, or distance that moves: For, as to a man that rides in a Coach, or sails upon Water, the Shore, Trees, Hedges, Meadows, and Fields, seem to move; when as yet, 'tis the man that moves from them; so it is with the figure in a Looking-glass: Wherefore it is onely a mistake in the animal sense, to take the motion of one, for the motion of the other.

Q. 20. Whether a Part or Figure repeated by the same Motions, be the same part or figure as the former, or one­ly like the former; as also whether an action repeated, be the same with the former?

I answer: That if the Parts, Figures and Actions be the same, they will always remain the same, although they be dissolved and repeated millions of times; as for example, if you make a figure of wax, and dissolve it, and make that figure again just as it was before, and of the same parts, and by the same action, it will be the very same figure; but if you alter either the parts, or the figure, it may be like the former figure, but not the very same. The like for action; if one and the same action be repeated without any alteration, it is nothing [Page 241] else but a repetition of the corporeal figurative motions; but if there be any alteration in it, it is not made by the same figurative motions, and consequently, 'tis not the same action; for though the self-moving parts be the same, yet the figurative motions are not the same; not that those figurative motions are not in the same parts, but not repeated in the same manner. Wherefore it is well to be observed, that a Repetition is of the same parts, figures and actions that were before, but an al­teration is not a repetition; for wheresoever is but the least alteration, there can be no exact repetition.

Q. 21. Whether there may be a Remembrance in Sense, as well as there is in Reason?

I answer, Yes: for Remembrance is nothing else but a Repetition of the same figure, made by the same corporeal figurative motions; and as there is a rational remembrance, which is a repetition of the same figures, made by the rational, corporeal figurative motions, so there is also a sensitive remembrance, that is, a repeti­tion of the same figures, made by the sensitive, cor­poreal, figurative motions: For example, I see an object; the sensitive motions in the eye, pattern out the figure of that object; but as soon as the object is re­moved, the perception is altered. It may be, I see the same object again in a dream, or in a phrensie, or the like distemper; and then the same figure is repeated which was made first by the sensitive motions of the figure of the object, when it was really present; which [Page 242] is a sensitive remembrance, whether the repetition be made after a Pattern or by rote, although it is more proper to say, that remembrance is onely a repetition of such figures as are made by rote, then of those that are made after a Pattern; for a repetition of those fi­gures that are made after a Pattern; is rather a present perception of a present object; when as remembrance is of objects that are absent.

Q. 22. Whether the rational Parts can quit some Parts and join to others?

I answer: Our sense and reason perceives they do; or else there would be no Motion, no Separation, Composition, Dilation, Contraction, Digestion, Pro­duction, Transformation, Infancy, Youth, Age, nor no Action in the World whatsoever: And by this it also evident, that (as I said before) particular, rational and sensitive parts, are not bound to move al­ways together, or to keep constantly to the same parts, no not in the action of perception; for though they most commonly work together when they move regularly; yet many times they do not: as for Example, the sen­sitive do not always make perceptions of exterior objects, but many times make figures by rote; as 'tis manifest in mad men and such as are in high Feavers and the like distempers, which see or hear, taste or smell such or such objects when none are present; and the Rational Parts being regular, do perceive both the sensitive figures made by rote, and that there are [Page 243] no such exterior objects really present; also the Ra­tional parts make figures by rote, and without any out­ward pattern; but such voluntary figures cannot pro­perly be named Perceptions, by reason Perceptions are occasioned by outward objects; but they are rather voluntary Conceptions.

Q. 23. If it be so, that Parts can divide themselves from some Parts, and join to other Parts: Why may not the soul do the same, and change its Vehicles, that is, leave such, and take other Vehicles?

I answer: Concerning the Natural soul of man, which is part of Nature, and consists of the purest and subtilest degree of matter, which is the Rational, it is without question, that it is divideable and composeable, because it is material, and therefore subject to chan­ges and transmutations; But as for the supernatural soul, because she is spiritual and consequently indivi­dable, as having no parts, and therefore not the pro­priety of a body which is to have figurative actions, it cannot be said of her that she is subject to compo­sitions, divisions, transmutations, &c. However, put the case the supernatural soul should have those pro­prieties of a body, although no body her self; Yet there could be but one infinite soul in one infinite body, and as the body did divide, so the soul must of necessity do also otherwise one soul would have many bodies, and some bodies would be soul-less; which would cause a horrid confusion between souls and bodies. Where­fore [Page 244] in my opinion Pythagoras's doctrine concerning the transmigration of souls, or that one soul can take several bodies, is as absurd, as that one body can quit one place and acquire an other, and so have more pla­ces then bodies; which if it were thus, we might with as much probability affirm, that many bodies could be in one place, and in the resurrection of bodies there would certainly arise a great dispute between several bodies for one soul, and between several souls for one body, especially if one body was particularly beloved of more then one soul; all which would breed such a war between souls and bodies, souls and souls, and bo­dies and bodies, that it would put all the world into a confusion; and therefore my opinion is, that Na­ture is but one onely infinite body, which being self­moving, is divideable and composeable, and consists of infinite parts of several degrees, which are so inter­mixt, that in general they cannot be separated from each other, or from the body of Nature, and subsist single and by themselves; Neither can it be otherwise, unless Nature had several bodies, but though she has infinite parts, yet has she but one infinite body; for parts and body are but one Corporeal, self-moving, self-living and self-knowing Nature; And as for the degrees of animate and inanimate matter, they are also but parts of that one body of Nature, and the various and infinite knowledges, perceptions, lives, &c. considered in general, are nothing else but the life, [Page 245] knowledg and perception of the infinite body of Na­ture. And from hence it follows, that one man may have numerous souls, as well as he has numerous parts and particles; which as long as the whole figure of man lasts, their functions and actions are according to the na­ture of that figure; but when the figure of man dis­solves (which dissolution is nothing else but a change of those motions that were proper to the nature of its figure) then all the parts of that figure, if they be joined and composed with other parts and figures, become not soul-less, or life-less; but because they consist all of a commixture of animate and inanimate matter, they retain life and soul, onely the actions of that life and soul are according to the nature of those fi­gures which the parts of the animal body did change into. Thus, as I have mentioned in my Philosophical Letters Preface, no Creature can challenge a particular life and soul to it self, but every Creature may have by the dividing and composing-nature of this self-moving Matter, more or fewer natural souls and lives.

And thus much of knowledg and perception; which since it is not onely the ground of Natural Philosophy, but a subject of a difficult Nature, I have insisted some­what longer upon it then I have done upon any other, and endeavoured to clear it as well as I could; so that now, I hope, all that I have declared hitherto, will be sufficient to give the ingenious Reader a true infor­mation of my opinion thereof, and a satisfactory answer [Page 246] to any other scruples that should happen to puzzle his brain; I'le add no more at this present, but conclude with a brief repetition of those few Notes concerning the principles, which by that small portion of Reason and Judgment that Nature has allowed me, I have endeavoured to declare and prove in my works of Na­tural Philosophy.

1. There is but one Matter, and infinite Parts; one self-motion, and infinite Actions; one Self-knowledg, and infinite particular Knowledges and Perceptions.

2. All parts of Nature are living, knowing, and perceptive, because all are self-moving, for self-mo­tion is the cause of all particular effects, figures, actions, varieties, changes, lives, knowledges, perceptions, &c. in Nature, and makes the onely difference between animate and inanimate Matter.

3. The chief and general actions of Nature, are di­vision and composition of parts, both which are done but by one act; for at the same time, when parts sepa­rate themselves from such parts, they join to other parts; and this is the cause there can be no Vacuum, nor no single parts in Nature.

4. Every particular part of figure is infinitely di­vided and composed from and with other parts.

5. The infinite divisions and compositions hinder, that Nature cannot run into extreams in her particulars, but keep the parts and actions of Nature in an equal ballance.

[Page 247] 6. The Inanimate part of Matter has life, sense, and self-knowledg, as well as the animate; but being not moving in it self, or its own Nature, it has not such a perceptive sense and self-knowledg, nor such an active life as the animate hath.

7. The parts of Inanimate Matter alter according to their commixture with the Animate, and so do their particular self-knowledges.

8. As parts alter by the changes of motions, so do particular perceptions.

9. Though all perceptions are figurative actions, yet no particular Creature can undoubtedly affirm, that all are made by patterning or imitation; by reason as the parts and actions of Nature are infinite, so are also particular perceptions; and being infinite, they cannot be known by any particular Creature.

10. There are besides exterior perceptions, volun­tary actions, both of sense and reason, not made by imitation, but freely and by rote; and these may be called conceptions, rather then perceptions.

11. Those are much in the wrong, who believe, that man can know no more then what his five senses do in­form him; for the rational part, which is the purest, subtilest, most active, and inspective part of Nature, does inform it self of things which the sensitive cannot; as for example, how was the new world and the Anti­podes found out? for they were neither seen, nor heard of, nor tasted, nor smelled, nor touched. Truly [Page 248] our reason does many times perceive that which our senses cannot; and some things our senses cannot per­ceive until reason informs them; for there are many inventions which owe their rise and beginning onely to reason. It is not sense, but reason that knows or per­ceives, there is something beyond it self, and be­yond Nature, which is the Onely, Eternal, and Om­nipotent God, and there can be no higher conception then this; for what is beyond it, is supernatural, and belongs to supernatural Creatures; as for example, those divine souls which God has given to men, above their rational material souls: but as for the wicked souls, they come not from God, but are irregularities of Nature, which God certainly will punish, as a Ma­ster does the evil actions of his Servant.

12. Art is but a Natural Creature or effect, and not a Creator of any thing.

13. Colour, Magnitude, Figure, Place, Time, Gravity, Levity, Density, Rarity, Compositions, Divisions, Alterations, &c. are all one and the same with self-moving Matter, and nothing else but the va­rious actions of Nature; which actions can no more be separated from body, then body can from Matter, or parts from their whole; for all that is natural, is corporeal; and therefore the distinction into substances and accidents, is to no purpose, since there cannot really be, no not imagined, such a thing as an incorporeal or substanceless motion or action in Nature.

[Page 249] But some perhaps will say, If every part and [...] of Nature has Magnitude, Colour, Figure, Place, &c. How is it possible that they can be one and the same with body, since they are subject to several per­ceptions?

To which I answer, The several perceptions do not make them to be several bodies, but they are patterned out or perceived as several proprieties or attributes of one body, or as several effects of one cause; for though there is but one cause in Nature, which is self-moving matter; yet that onely cause must of necessity have several effects or proprieties, as Figure, Colour, Place, Magnitude, &c. and if I may without offence make a comparison between the Creator and a Creature, God is but one in his Essence, as one Infinite and Eternal God, and yet has seve­ral Divine Attributes; and though the parts of Na­ture cannot comprehend, conceive, or perceive God, yet they may conceive somewhat of his several At­tributes, after several manners or wayes: In the like manner, although there is but one matter, yet that matter may be perceived after several manners or ways, it being impossible that matter, or any part of par­ticle of matter, although it were single, should be without those several mentioned proprieties; for can any one conceive or imagine a body without Figure, Magnitude, Place or Colour, were it as little as an Atome? and since there are no Natural Figures or [Page 250] Creatures but consist of parts, those composed Fi­gures may have a different Magnitude, Place, Co­lour, &c. from their parts and particles were they single; but being self-moving, those figures may alter by self-motion; for 'tis as impossible for a body to be without parts, as for parts to be without body; but if matter were not self-moving, there would neither be alterations, perceptions, nor any natural actions, although there might be a fixt self-knowledg in Na­tures parts. And thus it is no wonder how there can be several perceptions of one figure, by reason there's no figure but is composed of parts; and as we can conceive a whole and its parts, which yet are one and the same thing, several ways; (for a whole we con­ceive as a composition of parts; and parts we con­ceive as a division of the whole) so we may Figure, Place, Magnitude, &c. And as we cannot conceive nor perceive motion without body; so neither can we conceive those mentioned proprieties without body, or body without them, they being nothing else but the corporeal, figurative actions of Nature.

FURTHER OBSERVATIONS UPON EXPERIMENTAL PHILOSOPHY, Reflecting withal upon some Principal Subjects in CONTEMPLATIVE PHILOSOPHY.

1. Ancient Learning ought not to be exploded, nor the Experimental part of Philosophy preferred before the Speculative.

IN this present age those are thought the greatest Wits that rail most against the ancient Philosophers, especially Ari­stotle, who is beaten by all; but whether he deserve such punishment, others may judg. In my opinion, he was a very subtil Philosopher, and an ingenious Man; 'tis true, he was subject to errors as well as other men are, (for there is no creature so perfect but may err, nay, not Nature her self; but God onely [Page 2] who is Omnipotent) but if all that err should be ac­counted fools, and destitute of regular reason, then those deserve it most who think themselves wiser then they are, and upon that account few in this age would escape this censure. But concerning the Opinions of ancient Philosophers, condemned by many of our mo­dern Writers, I for my particular, do very much ad­mire them; for although there is no absolute perfecti­on in them, yet if we do but rightly consider them, we shall find, that in many things, they come nearer to truth then many of our Moderns; for surely the anci­ents had as good and regular rational and sensitive per­ceptions, and as profitable Arts and Sciences as we have; and the world was governed as well, and they lived as happily in ancient times, as we do now, nay more. As for example; how well was the World governed, and how did it flourish in Augustus's time? how many proud and stately Buildings and Palaces could ancient Rome shew to the world, when she was in her flower? The Cedars, Gold, and many other curiosities which Solomon used in the structure of that Magnificent Temple, (the like whereof our age cannot shew) were as safely fetch'd and brought to him out of forreign places, as those commodities which we have out of other Countries either by Sea or Land: Besides, I doubt not but they had as profitable and use­ful Arts and knowledges, and as skilful and ingenious Artists as our age can boast of; if not the very same, yet [Page 3] the like, and perhaps better, which by the injury of time have been lost, to our great disadvantage; it may be they had no Microscopes or Telescopes, but I think they were the happier for the want of them, im­ploying their time in more profitable studies: What learned and witty people the Egyptians were, is suffici­ently known out of ancient Histories, which may in­form us of many more. But I perceive the knowledg of several ages and times, is like the increase and decrease of the Moon; for in some ages Art and Learning flourishes better then in others, and therefore it is not onely an injury, but a sign of ill-nature, to exclaim a­gainst ancient Learning, and call it Pedantry; for if the ancients had not been, I question whether we should have arrived to that knowledg we boast of at this present; for they did break the Ice, and shew'd us the way in many things, for which we ought to be thankful, rather then reward them with scorn. Neither ought Artists, in my opinion, to condemn Contem­plative Philosophy, nay, not to prefer the Experi­mental part before her; for all that Artists have, they are beholden for it to the conceptions of the ingenious Student, except some few Arts which ascribe their original to change; and therefore speculation must needs go be fore practice; for how shall a man practise, if he does not know what or which way to practise? Reason must direct first how sense ought to work, and so much as the Rational knowledg is more noble then the Sensi­tive, [Page 4] so much is the Speculative part of Philosophy more noble then the Mechanical. But our age being more for deluding Experiments then rational arguments, which some cal a tedious babble, doth prefer Sense before Reason, and trusts more to the deceiving sight of their eyes, and deluding glasses, then to the perception of clear and regu­lar Reason; nay, many will not admit of rational argu­ments, but the bare authority of an Experimental Philo­sopher is sufficient to them to decide all Controversies, & to pronounce the Truth without any appeal to Reason; as if they onely had the Infallible Truth of Nature, and ingrossed all knowledg to themselves. Thus Reason must stoop to Sense, and the Conceptor to the Artist, which will be the way to bring in Ignorance, instead of advancing knowledg; for when the light of Rea­son begins to be Eclipsed, darkness of Understanding must needs follow.

2. Whether Artificial Effects may be called Natural, and in what sense.

IN my former discourses I have declared that Art produces Hermaphroditical Effects, that is, such as are partly Natural, and partly Artificial; but the que­stion is, whether those Hermaphroditical Effects may not be called Natural Effects as well as others, or whe­ther they be Effects quite different and distinct from Natural? My answer is, When I call Artificial [Page 5] effects Hermaphroditical, or such as are not Natural; I do not speak of Nature in general, as if they were something else besides Nature; for Art it self is natural, and an effect of Nature, and cannot produce any thing that is beyond, or not within Nature; wherefore ar­tificial effects can no more be excluded from Nature, then any ordinary effect or Creature of Nature; But when I say they are not natural, I understand the par­ticular nature of every Creature, according to its own kind of species; for as there is Infinite Nature which may be called General Nature, or Nature in General, which includes and comprehends all the effects and Creatures that lie within her, and belong to her, as be­ing parts of her own self-moving body; so there are also particular natures in every Creature, which are the in­nate, proper and inherent interior and substantial forms and figures of every Creature, according to their own kind or species, by which each Creature or part of Nature is discerned or distinguished from the other; as for example, although an Animal and a Vegetable be fellow Creatures, and both Natural, because Mate­rial, yet their interior particular Natures are not the same, because they are not of the same kind, but each has its own particular Nature quite different from the other; and these particular Natures are nothing else but a change of corporeal figurative motions, which make this diversity of figures; for were the same inte­rior and natural motions found in an Animal as are in [Page 6] a Vegetable, an Animal would be a Vegetable, and a Vegetable an Animal without any difference; and after this rate there would be no variety at all in Nature; but self-motion acting diversly and variously, not onely in every kind and species, but in every particular Creature and part of Nature, causeth that wonderful variety which appears every where even to our admiration in all parts of Nature. But to return to artificial effects, it is known that Nature has her own ways in her actions, and that there are constant productions in every kind and sort of natural Creatures, which Nature observes in the propagation and increase of them; whose gene­ral manner and way is always the same; (I say, general, because there are many variations in the particular mo­tions belonging to the production of every particular Creature.) For example, all Mankind is produced after one and the same manner or way, to wit, by the copulation of two persons of each Sex; and so are other sorts of Creatures produced other ways: also a perfect Creature is produced in the same shape, and has the same interior and exterior figure as is proper to it ac­cording to the nature of its kind and species to which it belongs, and this is properly called a natural produ­ction: But when the figurative motions in particular productions do not move after this ordinary way, as in the productions of Monsters, it is called a praeter-natural or irregular production, proceeding from the irregu­larity of motions; not praeternatural in respect to general [Page 7] Nature, but in respect to the proper and particular na­ture of the figure. And in this regard I call Artifical effects Hermaphroditical, that is, partly Natural, and partly Artificial; Natural, because Art cannot pro­duce any thing without natural matter, nor without the assistance of natural motions, but artificial, because it works not after the way of natural productions; for Art is like an emulating Ape, and will produce such figures as Nature produces, but it doth not, nor cannot go the same way to work as Nature doth; for Natures ways are more subtil and mysterious, then that Art, or any one particular Creature should know, much less trace them; and this is the true construction of my sense concerning natural and artificial production; whereby it is manifest that I am not of the opinion of that Experimental Writer who thinks it no improba­bility to say that all natural effects may be called artifi­cial, nay, that Nature her self may be called the Art of God; for Art is as much inferior to Nature, as a part is inferior to the whole, and all Artificial Effects are Ir­regular in comparison to Natural; wherefore to say God or Nature works Artificially, would be as much as to say they work irregularly.

3. Of Natural Matter and Motion.

IAm of that Learned Authors mind, who counts those but narrow souls, and not worthy the name of [Page 8] Philosophers, that think any body can be too great, or too vast, as also too little in its natural dimensions, and that Nature is stinted at an atome, and brought to a non­plus of her sub-divisions; for truly, if there cannot be Extreams in Infinite, there can also be none in Na­ture, and consequently there can neither be smallest nor biggest, strongest nor weakest, hardest nor soft­est, swiftest nor slowest, &c. in Nature, by reason Nature is Infinite in her actions, as well as in her parts, and hath no set bounds or limits; and therefore the Corpuscularian or Atomical Writers, which do reduce the parts of Nature to one certain and propor­tioned Atome, beyond which they imagine Nature cannot go, because their brain or particular finite rea­son cannot reach further, are much deceived in their arguments, and commit a fallacy in concluding the finiteness and limitation of Nature from the narrow­ness of their rational Conceptions. Nevertheless, al­though Natures actions and parts are Infinite, consi­dered in general, yet my opinion is, that Nature ne­ver doth actually run into Infinite in her particular a­ctions and parts; for as there are infinite divisions, so there are also infinite compositions in Nature; and as there are infinite degrees of hardness, slowness and thickness, so there are also infinite degrees of softness, swiftness, thinness, &c. so that every particular mo­tion or action of Nature is ballanced and poised by its opposite, which hinders a running into infinite in na­tures [Page 9] particulars, and causes a variety of natural figures; for although Infinite Matter in it self and its own es­sence is simple and homogeneous, as the learned call it, or of the same kind and nature, and consequently is at peace with it self, yet there is a perpetual opposition and war between the parts of nature, where one sometimes gets the better of the other, and overpowers it either by force or slight, and is the occasion of its dissolution into some other figure; but there's no part so powerful as to reduce any thing into nothing, or to destroy it to­tally from being Matter; nay, not Nature her self has such a power, but God alone, who as he has made Nature, so he may destroy her; for although Nature has an Infinite power, yet she is not omnipotent, but her power is a natural infinite power, when as Omni­potency is an attribute onely belonging to God; nei­ther hath she a divine, but a natural infinite knowledg; by which it is evident, that I do not ascribe divine at­tributes to Nature, which were to make her a God, nor detract from Nature that which properly belongs to her; for Nature being infinite in body and parts, it would be absurd to confine her to a finite power and knowledg. By parts, I understand not onely the in­finite figures and fizes, but also the infinite actions of Nature: and I am of Des Cartes opinion, that the parts of Matter may be made bigger or less by addition or subtraction of other parts; but I cannot yield to him when he says, that Motion may be swifter and slower [Page 10] by addition given to the movent by other contiguous bodies more swiftly moving, or by subduction of it by bodies slower moved, and that Motion may be trans­ferred out of one body into another; for Motion can­not be conceived, much less subsist without Matter; and if Motion should be transferred or added to some other body, Matter must be added or transferred also: Neither doth the addition of some parts of Matter add always exterior local motion to the body it is joyned to, but they retain the motion proper to their own figure and nature; as for example, if a stone be added to an animal, it will rather hinder then help its exterior mo­tions. But I must refer the Reader to my other Phi­losophical Works, in which I have discoursed more of this subject.

4. Nature cannot be known by any of her Parts.

IAm not of Plinius's Opinion, That Nature in her whole power is never more wholly seen then in her smal­lest Works; For how can Nature be seen in a part, when as Infinite cannot be known neither in nor by any Part, much less a small Part? Nay, were Nature a great finite body, it could not be perceived intirely in and by a small or minute part, no more then a humane eye can see all this world Celestial and Terestial at once. 'Tis true, Reason being joyned to Sense, may make a better discovery then if they were sepa­rated; [Page 11] but as the humane optick sense is not capable to perceive the greatest, so neither the smallest creatures exterior, much less their interior parts, although as­sisted by Art; for Art, (as I mentioned before) many times deludes rather then informs, making hermaphro­ditical figures; and Nature has more variety and cu­riosity in the several forms, and figurative corporeal mo­tions of one of the smallest creatures, then the most ob­serving and clearest optick sense can perceive. But mi­stake me not; I do not say, that Arts are not profi­table, but that they are not truly and thorowly intelli­gent or knowing of all Natures works; for seve­ral Arts are like several other Creatures, which have their particular natures, faculties and proprieties, be­yond which they cannot go, and one Creature is not able to comprehend or know all other Creatures, no not any one single Creature perfectly, which ifso, then none can inform what it doth not know. Nay, not onely one particular Creature is not able to know it, but not one particular kind or sort of Creatures: as for example; all Man-kind that ever have liv'd, or are at present living in this world, could never find out the truth of Nature, even in the least of her parts, nay, not in themselves: For what man is he that knows the figurative corporeal motions, which make him to be such a Creature as Man, or that make any part of him? and what Man or Art can inform us truly of the figurative motions that make the nature of blood, flesh, [Page 12] bones, &c. or can give a reason why the heart is trian­gular, and the head spherical, and so for every diffe­rently-shaped part of his body? I will not say, but that Man may guess at it, but not infallibly know it by any Art; wherefore Reason will more truly disco­ver so much of Nature as is discoverable to one kind or fort of Creatures, then Art can do; for Art must attend Reason as the chief Mistris of Information, which in time may make her a more prudent and pro­fitable servant then she is; for in this age she is be­come rather vain then profitable, striving to act be­yond her power, as I do undertake to write beyond my experience, for which, 'tis probable Artists will condemn me; but if I err, I ask their pardon, and pray them to consider the Nature of our sex, which makes us, for the most part, obstinate and wilful in our opinions, and most commonly impertinently foolish: And if the Art of Micrography can but find out the figurative corporeal motions that make or cause us to be thus, it will be an Art of great same, for by that Artists may come to discover more hidden causes and effects; but yet I doubt they will hardly find out the interior nature of our fex by the exterior form of their faces or countenances, although very curious, and full of variety of several beauties; nay, I dare on the contrary say, had a young beautiful La­dy such a face as the Microscope expresses, she would not onely have no lovers, bnt be rather a Monster of [Page 13] Art, then a picture of Nature, and have an aversion, at least a dislike to her own exterior figure and shape; and perchance if a Lowse or Flea, or such like insect, should look through a Microscope, it would be as much affrighted with its own exterior figure, as a young beautiful Lady when she appears ill-favoured by Art. I do not say this, as if Optick Glasses could not present the true figure of an Original; for if they do not ex­ceed the compass of natural dimensions, they may; but when they endeavour to go beyond them, and do more then Nature has done, they rather present mon­strous, then truly natural figures. Wherefore those, in my opinion, are the best Artists, that keep nearest to Natures Rules, and endeavour not to know more then what is possible for a finite part or creature to know; for surely there is no better way to be rightly and truly informed of Natures works, then by study­ing Natures corporeal figurative motions, by the means of which study, they will practise Arts (as far as Art is able to be practised) more easily and success­fully then they will do without it. But to conclude this discourse, some parts of Nature are more indued with regular reason then others, which is the cause that some creatures of one and the same fort or kind, as for exam­ple, Mankind, are more wife and ingenious then others; and therefore it is not art, but regular sense and reason, that makes some more knowing, and some more wife and ingenious then others; and the irregular motions [Page 14] of sense and reason that make some more ignorant or more extravagant in their opinions then others.

5. Art cannot introduce new forms in Nature.

SOme account it a great honour, That the Indulgent Creator, although he gives not to Natural Creatures the power to produce one atome of matter, yet allows them the power to introduce so many forms which Philosophers teach to be nobler then matter, and to work such changes amongst Creatures, that if Adam was now alive, and should survelgh the great variety of mans production, that are to be found in the shops of Artificers, the Laborato­ries of Chymists, and other well furnished Magazines of Art, he would admire to see what a new world it were. Where, first, I do not understand, how man, or any other creature, should have the power of making or intro­ducing new forms, if those forms were not already in Nature; for no Creature by any Art whatsoever, is able to produce a new form, no more then he can make an atome of new matter, by reason the power lies in Nature, and the God of Nature, not in any of her Creatures; and if Art may or can work changes amongst some fellow-creatures, they are but natural, by reason Nature is in a perpetual Motion, and in some parts in a perpetual transformation. Next, as for the Question, Whether forms be more noble then the mat­ter? my opinion is, that this can with no more ground [Page 15] of truth be affirmed, then that the effect is nobler then its cause, and if any creature should have power to make forms, which are more noble then matter it self, then certainly that creature would be above Nature, and a creator rather then a creature. Besides, form cannot be created without matter, nor matter without form; for form is no thing subsisting by it self without matter, but matter and form make but one body; and therefore he that introduces a new form, must also introduce a new matter; and though Art changes forms, yet it cannot be said to introduce a new form; for forms are and have been eternally in Nature as well as Matter, so that nothing is created anew, which never was in Nature before. 'Tis true, if Adam were alive now, he might see more variety, but not more Truth; for there are no more kinds and sorts of natural Creatures, then there were at his time, though never more metamorphosed, or ra­ther I may say disfigured, unnatural and hermaphro­ditical issues then there are now, which if they should make a new world by the Architecture of Art, it would be a very monstrus one: But I am sure art will ne­ver do it; for the world is still as it was, and new dis­coveries by Arts, or the deaths and births of Creatures will not make a new world, nor destroy the old, no more then the dissolving and composing of several parts will make new Matter; for although Nature delights in variety, yet she is constant in her ground­works; and it is a great error in man to study more the [Page 16] exterior faces and countenances of things, then their interior natural figurative motions, which error must undoubtedly cause great mistakes, in so much as mans rules will be false, compared to the true Prin­ciples of Nature; for it is a false Maxime to believe, that if some Creatures have power over others, they have also power over Nature: it might as well be be­lieved, that a wicked Man, or the Devil, hath power over God; for although one Part may have power over another, yet not over Nature, no more then one man can have power over all Mankind: One Man or Creature may over-power another so much as to make him quit his natural form or figure, that is, to die and be dissolved, and so to turn into another fi­gure or creature; but he cannot over-power all Creatures; nay, if he could, and did, yet he would not be an absolute destroyer and Creator, but onely some weak and simple Transformer, or rather some artificial disfigurer and misformer, which cannot al­ter the world, though he may disorder it: But surely as there was always such a perpetual Motion in Na­ture, which did and doth still produce and dissolve o­ther Creatures, which Production and Dissolution is nam'd birth and death, so there is also a Motion which produces and dissolves Arts, and this is the ordinary action and work of Nature, which continues still, and onely varies in the several ways or modes of dissolving and composing.

6. Whether there be any Prime or Principal Figures in Nature, and of the true Principles of Na­ture.

SOme are of opinion, that the Prime or Principal figures of Nature are Globes or Globular figures, as being the most perfect; but I cannot conceive why a globular or spherical figure should be thought more perfect then any other, for another figure may be as perfect in its kind, as a round figure is in its kind: for example, we cannot say a Bird is a more perfect figure then a Beast, or a Beast a more perfect figure then a Fish, or Worm; neither can we say Man is a more perfect figure then any of the rest of the Animals: the like of Vegetables, Minerals and Elements; for every several sort has as perfect a figure as another, according to the nature and propriety of its own kind or sort: But put the case man's figure were more perfect then any other, yet we could not say, that it is the Principle out of which all other figures are made, as some do con­ceive that all other figures are produced from the Glo­bular or Spherical; for there is no such thing as most or least perfect, because there is no most nor least in Nature. Others are of opinion, that the Principle of all natural Creatures is salt, and that when the World dissolves, it must dissolve into salt as into its first Prin­ciple; but I never heard it determined yet, whether it be [Page 18] fixt or volatile salt: Others again are of opinion, that the first principle of all Creatures is Water; which if so, then, seeing that all things must return into their first principle, it will be a great hinderance to the confla­gration of the world, for there will be so much water produced as may chance to quench out the fire. But if Infinite Nature has Infinite parts, and those Infinite parts are of Infinite figures, then surely they cannot be confined to one figure: Sense and Reason proves that Nature is full of variety, to wit, of corporeal figurative motions, which as they do not ascribe their original to one particular, so neither do they end in one particular figure or creature. But some will wonder that I deny any Part or Creature of Nature should have a supre­macy above the rest, or be called Prime or Principal, when as yet I do say that Reason is the Prime Part of Nature. To which, I answer: That, when I say, no Creature in Nature can be called Prime or Principal, I understand Natural effects, that is, Natural compo­sed Parts or Creatures: as for example, all those finite and particular Creatures that are composed of Life, Soul and Body, that is, of the Animate both Rational and Sensitive, and the Inanimate parts of Matter, and none of those composed Creatures, I mean, has any superiority or supremacy above the rest, so as to be the Principle of all other composed Creatures, as some do conceive Water, other Fire, others all the four Ele­ments to be simple bodies, and the principles of all other [Page 19] Natural Creatures, and some do make Globous bo­dies the perfectest figures of all others; for all these be­ing but effects, and finite particulars, can be no princi­ples of their fellow-creatures, or of Infinite Nature. But when I say that Reason, or the Rational part of Mat­ter is the Prime Part of Nature, I speak of the Princi­ples of Nature, out of which all other Creatures are made or produced, which Principle is but one, viz. Matter, which makes all effects or Creatures of Na­ture to be material, for all the effects must be accord­ing to their principle; but this matter being of two de­grees, viz. animate and inanimate, the animate is no­thing but self-motion; (I call it animate matter, by reason I cannot believe, as some do, that Motion is Im­material, there being nothing belonging to Nature which is not material, and therefore corporeal self­motion, or animate matter is to me one and the same) and this animate matter is again subdivided into two degrees, to wit, the rational and sensitive; the rational is the soul, the sensitive the life, and the inanimate the body of Infinite Nature; all which, being so inter­mixed and composed, as no separation can be made of one from the other, but do all constitute one Infinite and self-moving body of Nature, and are found even in the smallest particles thereof (if smallest might be said) they are justly named the Principles of Nature, whereof the rational animate matter, or corporeal self­motion is the chief designer and surveigher, as being [Page 20] the most active, subtil and penetrating part, and the sensitive the workman: but the inanimate part of Matter being thorowly intermixed with this animate self-moving Matter, or rather with this corporeal self­motion, although it have no motion in it self, that is, in its own nature, yet by vertue of the commixture with the animate, is moving as well as moved; for it is well to be observed, that although I make a distincti­on betwixt animate and inanimate, rational and sen­sitive Matter, yet I do not say that they are three di­stinct and several matters; for as they do make but one body of Nature, so they are also but one Matter; but as I mentioned before, when I speak of self-mo­tion, I name it animate matter, to avoid the mistake, lest self-motion might be taken for immaterial; for my opinion is, that they are all but one matter, and one material body of Nature. And this is the dif­ference between the cause or principle, and the effects of Nature, from the neglect of which comes the mi­stake of so many Authors, to wit, that they ascribe to the effects what properly belongs to the cause, ma­king those figures which are composed of the foresaid animate and inanimate parts of matter, and are no more but effects, the principles of all other Creatures, which mistake causes many confusions in several mens brains, and their writings. But it may be, they will account it paradoxical or absurd, that I say Infinite Matter con­sists of two parts, viz. animate and inanimate, and [Page 21] that the animate again is of two degrees, rational and sensitive, by reason the number of two is finite, and a finite number cannot make one infinite whole, which whole being infinite in bulk, must of necessity also consist of infinite parts. To which I answer, My meaning is not, that Infinite Nature is made up of two finite parts, but that she consists out of a co-mixture of animate and inanimate Matter, which although they be of two degrees or parts (call them what you will) yet they are not separated parts, but make one infinite body, like as life, soul and body, make but one man; for animate matter is (as I said before) nothing else but self-motion, which self-motion joyned with inani­mate matter makes but one self-moving body, which body by the same self-motion is divided into infinite fi­gures or parts, not separated from each other, or from the body of Nature, but all cohering in one piece, as several members of one body, and onely distinguished by their several figures; every part whereof has animate and inanimate matter as well as the whole body: Nay, that every part has not onely sensitive, but also ratio­nal matter, is evident, not onely by the bare motion in every part of Nature, which cannot be without sense, for wheresoever is motion, there's sense; but also by the regular, harmonious and well-ordered actions of Nature, which clearly demonstrate, that there must needs be reason as well as sense in every part and par­ticle of Nature; for there can be no order, method [Page 22] or harmony, especially such as appears in the actions of Nature, without there be reason to cause that order and harmony. And thus motion argues sense, and the well-ordered motion argues Reason in Nature, and in every part and particle thereof, without which Na­ture could not subsist, but would be as a dull indigested and unformed heap and Chaos. Besides, it argues that there is also knowledg in Nature, and all her parts; for wheresoever is sense and reason, there is also sensitive and rational knowledg, it being most improbable, that such an exactly-ordered and harmonious consort of all the infinitely-various actions of Nature should be with­out any knowledg, moving and acting, producing, transforming, composing, dissolving, &c. and not knowing how, whether, or why to move; and Na­ture being infinite in her own substance as well as in her parts, there in bulk, here in number, her knowledg in general must of necessity be infinite too, but in her par­ticulars it cannot but be finite and particular; and this knowledg differs according to the nature of each figure or creature; for I do not mean, that this sense and know­ledg I speak of, is onely an animal sense and knowledg, as some have mis-interpreted; for animal sense and knowledg is but particular, and belongs onely to that sort of Creatures which are Animals; but I mean such sense and knowledg as is proper to the nature of each figure; so that Animal Creatures have animal sense and knowledg, Vegetables a vegetative sense and know­ledg, [Page 23] Minerals a mineral sense and knowledg; and so of the rest of all kinds and sorts of Creatures. And this is my opinion of the Principles of Nature, which I submit to the examination of the ingenious and im­partial Reader to consider, whether it contains not as much probability, as the opinion of those whose Princi­ples are either Whirl-pools, insensible Minima's, Gas, Blas and Archeus, dusty Atomes, thrusting backwards and forwards, which they call reaction, and the like; or of those that make the ground and foundation of the knowledg of Nature artificial Experiments, and prefer Art before Reason: for my Principles and Grounds are sense and reason; and if they cannot hold, I know not what will; for where sense and reason has no admittance, there nothing can be in order, but confusion must needs take place.

7. Whether Nature be self-moving.

THere are some, who cannot believe, That any Man has yet made out, how Matter can move it self, but are of opinion, that few bodies move but by something else, no not Animals, whose spirits move the nerves, the nerves again the muscles, and so forth the whole body. But if this were so, then certainly there must either be something else that moves the spirits, or they must move of themselves; and if the spirits move of themselves, and be material, then a material substance or body may [Page 24] move of it self; but if immaterial, I cannot conceive, why a material substance should not be self-moving as well as an immaterial. But if their meaning be, that the Spirits do not move of themselves, but that the Soul moves them, and God moves the Soul; then it must either be done by an All-powerful Command, or by an Immediate action of God: The later of which is not probable, to wit, that God should be the Imme­diate Motion of all things himself; for God is an Im­moveable and Immutable Essence; wherefore it fol­lows, that it is onely done by an Omnipotent Com­mand, Will and Decree of God; and if so, Why might not Infinite Matter be decreed to move of it self as well as a Spirit, or the Immaterial Soul? But I perceive, Man has a great spleen against self-moving corporeal Nature, although himself is part of her, and the reason is his Ambition; for he would fain be su­preme and above all other Creatures, as more to­wards a divine Nature: he would be a God, if argu­ments could make him such, at least God-like, as is evident by his fall, which came meerly from an ambi­tious mind of being like God. The truth is, some opinions in Philosophy are like the Opinions in se­veral Religions, which endeavouring to avoid each other, most commonly do meet each other; like Men in a Wood, parting from one another in oppo­site ways, oftentimes do meet again; or like Ships which travel towards East and West, must of neces­sity [Page 25] meet each other; for as the learned Dr. Donn says, the furthest East is West, and the furthest West is East; in the same manner do the Epicurean, and some of our modern Philosophers meet; for those endea­vour to prove matter to be somewhat like a God, and these endeavour to prove man to be something like God, at least that part of man which they say is imma­terial, so that their several opinions make as great a noise to little purpose, as the dogs barking or howling at the Moon; for God the Author of Nature, and Na­ture the servant of God, do order all things and actions of Nature, the one by his Immutable Will, and All­powerful Command, the other by executing this Will and Command; the one by an Incomprehensible, Di­vine and Supernatural Power, the other in a natural manner and way; for God's Will is obey'd by Na­tures self-motion, which self-motion God can as easily give and impart to corporeal Nature, as to an Imma­terial Spirit; but Nature being as much dividable, as she is composeable, is the cause of several opinions as well as of several other creatures; for Nature is fuller of variety then men of arguments, which variety is the cause there are so many extravagant and irregular opi­nions in the world: and I observe, that most of the great and famous, especially our modern Authors, endeavour to deduce the knowledg of causes from their effects, and not effects from their causes, and think to find out Nature by Art, not Art by Nature: whereas, in my opinion, [Page 26] Reason must first consider the cause, and then Sense may better perceive the effects; Reason must judg, Sense execute: for Reason is the prime part of Nature, as being the corporeal soul or mind of Nature. But some are so much in love with Art, as they endeavour to prove not onely Nature, but also Divinity, which is the knowledg of God, by Art, thus preferring Art before Nature, when as Art is but Natures foolish changeling Child; and the reason is, that some parts of Nature, as some Men, not knowing all other parts, believe there is no reason, and but little sense in any part of Nature but themselves; nay, that it is irre­ligious to say, that there is, not considering, that God is able to give Sense and Reason to Infinite Nature, as well as to a finite part. But those are rather irreligi­ous, that believe Gods power is confined, or that it is not Infinite.

8. Of Animal Spirits.

I am not of the opinion of those that place the cause of all Sense and Motion in the animal Spirits, which they call the Purest and most aethereal particles of all bo­dies in the World whatsoever, and the very top and per­fection of all Natures operations: For Animal Spirits, in my opinion, are no more then other effects of Na­ture, onely they are not so gross as some, but are parts of a most pure, refined and rare sort of Inanimate [Page 27] Matter, which being intermixed with the parts of A­nimate Matter, and enlivened by them, become very subtil and active; I will not say, that they are of the highest and last degree of Inanimate Matter, nearest to the Animate, (as they do say, they have the neerest alliance to spiritualities, which in my opinion, is as much as to say, they are almost nothing) or of the first degree of sensitive matter, there being no such thing as first and last in Nature, but that they are one­ly such pure and rare parts of Inanimate Matter, as are not subject to the exterior perception of humane sense; for example, as the matter of respiration, or the like: for as there are Infinite parts of Inanimate Matter, so there are also infinite degrees of strength, weakness, purity, impurity, hardness, softness, density, rarity, swiftness, slowness, knowledg, ignorance, &c. as also several sorts and degrees of complexions, statures, constitu­tions, humors, wits, understanding, judgment, life, death, and the like; all which degrees, although they be in and of the infinite body of Nature, yet properly they belong to particular Creatures, and have onely a regard to the several parts of Nature, which being In­finite in number, are also of Infinite degrees, according to the Infinite changes of self-motion, and the propri­ety and nature of each figure; wherefore that opinion which makes Animal Spirits the prime or principal mo­tion of all things, and the chief Agent in Natures three Kingdoms, Mineral, Animal and Vegetable, reduces [Page 28] Infinite Nature to a finite Principle; whereas any one that enjoys but so much of humane sense and reason as to have the least perception or insight into Natural things, may easily conceive that the Infinite effects of Nature cannot proceed from a finite particular cause; nay, I am firmly perswaded, that they who believe any finite part to be the cause and Principle of Infinite self­moving Nature, do, in my opinion, not onely sin a­gainst Nature, but against God the Author of Na­ture, who out of his Infinite bounty gave Nature the Power of self-motion. But if any one desire to know, what then the true cause and Principle of all Natures Creatures and Figures be; I answer, In my opinion, it is not a Spirit or Immaterial substance, but Matter; but yet not the Inanimate part of Matter, but the A­nimate; which being of two degrees, rational and sen­sitive; both of them are the Infinite Life and Soul of the Infinite body of Nature; and this Animate Matter is also the cause of all infinite works, changes, figures and parts of Nature, as I have declar'd above more at large. Now as great a difference as there is between A­nimate and Inanimate, Body and Soul, Part and Whole, Finite and Infinite, so great a difference there is also be­tween the Animal Spirits, and the Prime Agent or Movent of Nature, which is Animate Matter, or (which is all one thing) corporeal self-motion; and as it would be paradoxical, to make Inanimate Matter to be the cause of Animate, or a part to be the cause of the whole, whose [Page 29] part it is, or a finite to be the cause of Infinite; so pa­radoxical would it also be to make Animal Spirits the top and perfection of all Natures operations; nay, so far are they from being the Prime Movent of other bodies, as they are but moved themselves; for to re­peat what I mentioned in the beginning, Animal Spi­rits are onely some sorts of rare and pure Inanimate Matter, which being thorowly intermixt with the animate parts of Matter, are more active then some sorts of more dense and grosser parts of Inanimate Mat­ter; I say some; for I do believe, that some of the most solid bodies are as active as the most rare and fluid parts of Matter, if not exteriously, yet interiously; and therefore we cannot say, that rare and fluid parts are more active then fixt and solid, or that fixt and solid are less active then fluid bodies, because all parts are self-moving. But if I was to argue with those that are so much for Animal Spirits, I would ask them, first, whether Animal Spirits be self-moving? If they say, they are, I am of their opinion, and do in­fer thence, that if animal spirits, which are but a small part of Nature, have self-motion, much more has Nature her self: But if not, I would ask, what gives them that motion they have? If they say Nature, then Nature must be self-moving. Perchance they'l say, God moves Nature: 'Tis true, God is the first Au­thor of Motion, as well as he is of Nature; but I cannot believe, that God should be the Prime actual [Page 30] Movent of all natural Creatures, and put all things in­to local motion, like as one wheel in a Clock turns all the rest; for Gods Power is sufficient enough to rule and govern all things by an absolute Will and Com­mand, or by a Let it be done, and to impart self-mo­tion to Nature to move according to his order and de­cree, although in a natural way. Next, I would ask whether any dead Creature have such Animal Spirits? If they affirm it, I am of their mind; if not, then I would ask, what causes in dead bodies that dissolution which we see? Thirdly, I would ask, whether those animal spirits be annihilated and generated anew? If they an­swer, not, I am of their opinion: but if they say, they are annihilated and generated anew; then I would fain know who is their Generator and Annihilator, for nothing can generate and annihilate it self? And if they say, God: I answer, It is not probable that God should have made any thing imperfect, especially in the production of Nature; for if there be things cre­ated anew which never were before in Nature, it ar­gues that Nature was not perfect at first, because of a new addition of so many Creatures; or if any thing could be annihilated in Nature, it would likewise ar­gue an imperfection in Nature, viz. that Nature was perfecter before those things were annihilated. And thus it would inferr, as if God had not power either to have made Nature perfect at first, or that God wanted work, and was forced to create and annihilate every [Page 31] moment; for certainly, the work of creation and anni­hilation is a divine action, and belongs onely to God. Lastly, concerning the functions and offices which the animal spirits perform in animal, or at least humane bodies, by their several motions and migrations from the brain through the spinal marrow, nerves, tendons, fibres, into all the parts of the body, and their return to the brain; I have declared my opinion thereof twelve years since, in my work of Poetical Fancies, which then came out the first time; and I thought it not unfit to insert here, out of the same book, these following lines, both that my meaning may be the better understood, and that they may witness I have been of that opinion so many years ago.

The reason why Thoughts are made in the Head.
Each Sinew is a small and slender string
Poem. Im­pres. 2. p. 52.
Which all the Senses to the body bring,
And they like pipes or gutters hollow be,
Where animal spirits run continually;
Though small, yet they such matter do contain
As in the skull doth lie, which we call brain.
Which makes, if any one do strike the heel,
That sense we quickly in the brain do feel:
It is not sympathy, but all one thing,
Which causes us to think, and pain doth bring;
[Page 32] For had the heel such quantity of brain
As doth the head and scull therein contain,
Then would such thoughts as in the brain dwell high
Descend into our heels, and there they'ld lie:
Insinews small brain scattered lies about,
It wants both room and quantity, no doubt;
For did a sinew so much brain but hold,
Or had so large a skin it to infold
As has the scull, then might the toe or knee,
Had they an optick nerve, both hear and see;
Had sinews room Fancy therein to breed,
Copies of Verse might from the heel proceed.
And again of the motion of the Blood.
Some by their industry and Learning found
P. 53.
That all the blood like to the Sea turns round;
From two great arteries it doth begin,
Runs through all veins, and so comes back again.
The muscles like the tides do ebb and flow,
According as the several spirits go:
The sinews, as small pipes, come from the head,
And they are all about the body spread,
Through which the animal spirits are convey'd
To every member, as the pipes are laid;
And from those sinew-pipes each sense doth take
Of those pure spirits, as they us do make.

9. Of the Doctrine of the Scepticks concerning the Knowledg of Nature.

WHen Scepticks endeavour to prove that not any thing in Nature can be truely and thorowly known, they are, in my opinion, in the right way, as far as their meaning is, that not any particular Crea­ture can know the Infinite parts of Nature; for Nature having both a divideable and composeable sense and reason, causes ignorance as well as knowledg amongst Particulars: But if their opinion be, that there is no true knowledg at all found amongst the parts of Na­ture, then surely their doctrine is not onely unprofi­table, but dangerous, as endeavouring to overthrow all useful and profitable knowledg. The truth is, that Na­ture, being not onely divideable, but also composeable in her parts, it cannot be absolutely affirmed that there is either a total ignorance, or a universal knowledg in Na­ture, so as one finite part should know perfectly all o­ther parts of Nature; but as there is an ignorance a­mongst Particulars, caused by the division of Natures parts, so there is also a knowledg amongst them, caused by the composition and union of her parts: Neither can any ignorance be attributed to Infinite Nature, by reason she being a body comprehending so many parts of her own in a firm bond and indissoluble union, so as no part can separate it self from her, must of necessity [Page 34] have also an Infinite wisdom and knowledg to govern her Infinite parts. And therefore it is best, in my judgment, for Scepticks and Dogmatists to agree in their different opinions, and whereas now they express their wit by division, to shew their wisdom by composition; for thus they will make an harmonious consort and u­nion in the truth of Nature, where otherwise their dis­agreement will cause perpetual quarrels and disputes both in Divinity and Philosophy, to the prejudice and ruine of Church and Schools; which disagreement proceeds meerly from self-love: For every Man being a part of Nature, which is self-loving as well as self­moving, would fain be, at least appear, wiser then his fellow-creatures. But the Omnipotent Creator has ordered Nature so wisely, as to divide not onely her power, but also her wisdom into parts, which is the rea­son that she is not Omnipotent, being divideable and composeable; When as God can neither be divided nor composed, but is one, simple and individual in­comprehensible being, without any composition of parts, for God is not material.

10. Of Natural Sense and Reason.

THose Authors which confess, That vulgar Reason is no better then a more refined Imagination, and that both Reason, Fancy and the Senses, are influenced by the bodies temperament, and like the Index of a Clock, are moved by the inward springs and wheels of the corporeal Machine, seem, in my opinion, to confirm, that natu­ral sense and reason is corporeal, although they do it in an obscure way, and with intricate arguments. But truly, do what they can, yet they must prove reason by reason; for irrational discourse cannot make proofs and arguments to evince the truth of Nature: But first it must be proved, what Sense and Reason is, whe­ther Divine or Natural, Corporeal or Immaterial. Those that believe natural sense and reason to be imma­terial, are in my opinion in a great error, because Na­ture is purely corporeal, as I have declared before; And those which affirm, that our understanding, will and reason are in some manner like to God's, shall never gain my assent; for if there be so great a difference be­tween God's Understanding, Will and Decree, and between Natures, as no comparison at all can be made betwixt them, much more is there between a part of Nature, viz. Man, and the Omnipotent and In­comprehensible God; for there is an Infinite difference between Divine Attributes and Natural Properties; [Page 36] wherefore to similize our Reason, Will, Understand­ing, Faculties, Pasions, and Figures, &c. to God, is too high a presumption, and in some manner a blas­phemy. Nevertheless, although our natural reason and faculties are not like to divine attributes, yet our natural rational perceptions are not always delusions; and therefore it is certain, that Natures knowing parts, both sensitive and rational, do believe a God, that is some Being above Nature: But many Writers en­deavour rather to make divisions in Religion, then promote the honour and worship of God by a mutual and united agreement, which I confess, is an irregu­larity and imperfection in some parts of Nature, and argues, that Nature is not so perfect but she has some faults and infirmities, otherwise she would be a God, which she is not.

11. Of a General Knowledg and Worship of God, given him by all Natural Creatures.

IT is not the sight of the beauteous frame of this world (as some do conceive) that makes men be­lieve and admire God, but the knowledg of the exi­stence of God is natural, and there's no part of Na­ture but believes a God; for, certainly, were there not any optick sense in Nature, yet God would be the God of Nature, and be worshiped and adored by her Creatures, which are her parts; for it is irreli­gious [Page 37] to say, God should want admiration and adora­tion for want of an eye, or any other of the animal or humane organs; surely Nature has more ways then five to express and declare God's Omnipotency: It is Infinite sense and reason that doth worship and a­dore God, and the several perceptions of this sense and reason know there is a God that ought to be worship­ped and adored, and not onely Ears, or Eyes, or the like exterior organs of man. Neither is it man alone, but all Creatures, that do acknowledg God; for although God cannot be perfectly known what he is in his Essence, yet he may be known in as much as Na­ture can know of him. But since Nature is dividable in her parts, each part has but a particular knowledg of God, which is the cause of several Religions, and several opinions in those Religions; and Nature being also composeable, it causes a conformity and union of those Opinions and Religions in the fundamental knowledg, which is, the existence of God: Wherefore that which makes a general and united knowledg of the Existence of God, is, that Nature is intire in her self, as having but one body, and therefore all her parts which are of that body have also one knowledg of God; for though the parts be different in the Worship of God, yet they have not a different belief of the Existence of God; not that God can be perfectly known either by Nature, or any of her parts, for God is Incomprehen­sible, and above Nature; but in as much as can be [Page 38] known, to wit, his Being; and that he is All-powerful, and that not any thing can be compared or likened to him; for he is beyond all draught and likeness, as be­ing an Eternal, Infinite, Omnipotent, Incorporeal, Individual, Immovable Being. And thus it is not one part or creature viewing another that causes either the knowledg or admiration of God, but the soul and life of Nature, which are her sensitive and rational parts; and Nature being the Eternal servant and Worshipper of God, God hath been also eternally worshipped and a­dored; for surely God's Adoration and Worship has no beginning in time: neither could God be worship­ped and adored by himself so, as that one part of him should adore and worship another; for God is an individual and simple Being, not composed of parts; and therefore, as it is impossible for me to believe, that there is no general Worship and Adoration of God, so it is impossible also to believe, that God has not been adored and worshipped from all Eternity, and that Nature is not Eternal; for although God is the Cause of Nature, and Nature the Effect of God, yet she may be Eternal however, there being nothing impos­sible to be effected by God; but he, as an Eternal Cause, is able to produce an Eternal Effect, for although it is a­gainst the rules of Logick, yet it is not above the power of God.

12. Of a Particular Worship of God, given him by those that are his chosen and elect People.

NAtural Philosophy is the chief of all sorts of knowledges; for she is a Guide, not onely to other Sciences, and all sorts of Arts, but even to divine knowledg it self; for she teaches that there is a Being above Nature, which is God, the Author and Master of Nature, whom all Creatures know and adore. But to adore God, after a particular manner, according to his special Will and Command, requires his Particu­lar Grace, and Divine Instructions, in a supernatural manner or way, which none but the chosen Creatures of God do know, at least believe, nor none but the sacred Church ought to explain and interpret: And the proof, that all men are not of the number of those elect and chosen people of God, is, that there can be but one True Religion, and that yet there are so many several and different opinions in that Religion; where­fore the Truth can onely be found in some, which are those that serve God truly, according to his special Will and Command, both in believing and acting that which he has been pleased to reveal and command in his holy Word: And I pray God, of his infinite mercy, to give me Grace, that I may be one of them, which I doubt not but I shall, as long as I follow the Instru­ction of our blessed Church, in which I have been [Page 40] educated. 'Tis true, many persons are much trou­bled concerning Free-will and Predestination, com­plaining, that the Christian Church is so divided about this Article, as they will never agree in one united be­lief concerning that point; which is the cause of the trouble of so many Consciences, nay, in some even to despair. But I do verily believe, that if man do but love God from his soul, and with all his power, and pray for his saving Graces, and offend not any Crea­ture when offences can or may be avoided, and fol­low the onely Instructions of the sacred Church, not endeavouring to interpret the Word of God after his own fancy and vain imagination, but praying zea­lously, believing undoubtedly, and living virtuously and piously, he can hardly fall into despair, unless he be disposed and inclined towards it through the irre­gularities of Nature, so as he cannot avoid it. But I most humbly thank the Omnipotent God, that my Conscience is in peace and tranquility, beseeching him of his mercy to give to all men the like.

13. Of the Knowledg of Man.

SOme Philosophical Writers discourse much con­cerning the knowledg of Man, and the ignorance of all other Creatures; but I have sufficiently expres­sed my opinion hereof, not onely in this, but in my other Philosophical Works, to wit, that I believe [Page 41] other Creatures have as much knowledg as Man, and Man as much in his kind as any other particular Crea­ture in its kind; But their knowledges being different, by reason of their different natures and figures, it causes an ignorance of each others knowledg; nay, the know­ledg of other Creatures many times gives information to Man: As for example; the Egyptians are inform­ed how high the River Nilus will rise by the Croco­dil's building her nest higher or lower, which shews, that those Creatures fore-see or fore-know more then Man can do: also many Birds fore-know the rising of a Tempest, and shelter themselves before it comes: the like examples might be given of several other sorts of Animals, whose knowledg proceeds either from some sensitive perceptions, or from rational observations, or from both; and if there be such a difference in the ra­tional and sensitive knowledg of one kind of Creatures, to wit, Animals, much more in all other kinds, as Vegetables, Minerals, Elements, and so in all Na­tures Works: Wherefore he that will say, there is no knowledg but in Man, at least in Animal kind; doth, in my opinion, say more then ever he will be able to prove; nay, the contrary is so evident, as it is without all dispute: But Man, out of self-love, and conceited pride, because he thinks himself the chief of all Creatures, and that all the World is made for his sake; doth also imagine that all other Creatures are ignorant, dull, stupid, senseless and irrational, and he onely [Page 42] wise, knowing and understanding. And upon this ground some believe, that Man is bound and decreed to pray to God for all other Creatures, as being not capable to pray for themselves; like as a Minister is bound to pray for his Flock. But really, if the Pastor should onely pray, and his Sheep not, but they did continue in their sins, I doubt his Prayers would be of little effect, and therefore it is well if their Prayers and Petitions be joyned together. The like may be said of all other Creatures: for the single knowledg and devotion of Man-kind cannot benefit other Creatures, if they be ignorant, and not capable to know, admire, adore and worship God themselves. And thus no man, with all the force of Logick, will ever be able to prove, that he is either the chief above all other Crea­tures, or that he onely knows and worships God, and no natural Creature else: for it is without dispute, that other Creatures, in their kinds, are as knowing and wise, as Man is in his kind.

14. A Natural Philosopher cannot be an Atheist.

IWonder how some of our learned Writers can imagine, that those who study Reason and Philo­sophy should make them their Vouchees of Licentious practices, and their secret scorn of Religion, and should ac­count it a piece of wit and gallantry to be an Atheist, and of atheism to be a Philosopher; considering that Reason [Page 43] and Philosophy is the onely way that brings and leads us to the natural knowledg of God: for it would be as much absurdity to say, Reason and Philosophy in­duce Atheism, as to say, Reason is not Reason; for Reason is the most knowing and wisest part of Nature, and the chief knowledg of Nature is to know there is a God; wherefore those that do argue in such a manner, argue without reason, and by calling others weak heads and fools, prove themselves Irrational. But I perceive their supposition is built upon a false ground; for they are of opinion, That the Exploding of Imma­terial substances, and the unbounded prerogative of Mat­ter must needs infer Atheism: which whether it do not shew a weaker head then those have that believe no Immaterial substances in Nature, Rational men may judg: For by this it is evident, that they make Imma­terial substances to be Gods, by reason they conclude, that he who believes no Immaterial substance in Na­ture is an Atheist: And thus by proving others A­theists, they commit Blasphemy themselves; for he that makes a God of a Creature, sins as much, if not more, then he who believes no God at all. And as for the unbounded prerogative of Matter, I see no reason, why men should exclaim against it; for why should Immaterial substances have more prerogative then Ma­terial? Truly, I may upon the same ground conclude the prerogative of Matter, as well as they do the prero­gative of Spirits; for both are but Creatures, and in [Page 44] that case, one has no more prerogative then the other, for God could make a Material Being to move it self as well as a Material Nothing. Nevertheless, al­though Matter is self-moving, yet it has not a God­like omnipotent power, nor any divine attributes; but an Infinite Natural power, that is, a power to pro­duce infinite effects in her own self, by infinite chan­ges of Motions: Neither doth it argue that Nature is above God, or at least God-like; for I do not say, that Nature has her self-moving power of her self, or by chance, but that it comes from God the Author of Nature; which proves that God must needs be a­bove Nature, although Nature is Infinite and Eter­nal; for these proprieties do not derogate any thing from the Attributes of God, by reason Nature is na­turally Infinite, which is Infinite in quantity and parts; but God is a Spiritual, Supernatural and In­comprehensible Infinite; and as for the Eternity of Nature, it is more probable to Regular Reason, then that Nature should have any beginning; for all be­ginning supposes time, but in God is no time, and there­fore neither beginning nor ending, neither in himself, nor in his actions; for if God be from all Eternity, his actions are so too, the chief of which is the production or creation of Nature. Thus natural reason may conceive that Nature is the Eternal servant of God; but how it was produced from all Eternity, no parti­cular or finite creature is able to imagine; by reason [Page 45] that not onely God, but also Nature is Infinite, and a finite Creature can have no Idea or conception of Infi­nite.

15. Of the Rational Soul of Man.

OF all the opinions concerning the Natural Soul of Man, I like that best which affirms the Soul to be a self-moving substance; but yet I will add a Material self-moving substance; for the Soul of Man is part of the Soul of Nature, and the Soul of Na­ture is Material; I mean onely the Natural, not the Divine Soul of Man, which I leave to the Church. And this natural Soul, otherwise called Reason, is nothing else but corporeal natural self-motion, or a particle of the purest, most subtil and active part of Matter, which I call animate; which animate Mat­ter is the Life and Soul of Nature, and consequently of Man, and all other Creatures: For we cannot in Reason conceive that Man should be the onely Crea­ture that partakes of this soul of Nature, and that all the rest of Natures parts, or most of them, should be soul-less, or (which is all one) irrational, although they are commonly called, nay believed to be such. Truly, if all other Creatures cannot be denied to be Material, they can neither be accounted Irrational, Insensible, or Inanimate, by reason there is no part, nay, not the smallest particle in Nature, our reason [Page 46] is able to conceive, which is not composed of Animate Matter, as well as of Inanimate; of Life and Soul, as well as of Body; and therefore no particular Creature can claim a prerogative in this case before an other; for there is a thorow mixture of Animate and Inanimate Matter in Nature, and all her Parts. But some may object, That if there be sense and reason in every part of Nature, it must be in all parts alike, and then a stone, or any other the like Creature, may have reason, or a rational soul, as well as Man. To which, I answer: I do not deny that a Stone has Reason, or doth partake of the Rational Soul of Nature as well as Man doth, because it is part of the same Matter Man consists of; but yet it has not animal or humane sense and reason, because it is not of animal kind; but being a Mineral, it has Mineral sense and reason: for it is to be observed, that as Animate self-moving Matter moves not one and the same way in all Creatures, so there can neither be the same way of knowledg and understanding, which is sense and reason, in all Creatures alike; but Nature being various, not onely in her parts, but in her acti­ons, it causes a variety also amongst her Creatures; and hence come so many kinds, sorts and particulars of Natural Creatures, quite different from each other; though not in the General and Universal principle of Nature, which is self-moving Matter, (for in this they agree all) yet in their particular interior natures, figures and proprieties. Thus although there be Sense [Page 47] and Reason, which is not onely Motion, but a regu­lar and well-ordered self-motion, apparent in the wonderful and various Productions, Generations, Transformations, Dissolutions, Compositions, and o­ther actions of Nature, in all Natures parts and parti­cles; yet by reason of the variety of this self-motion, whose ways and modes do differ according to the na­ture of each particular figure, no figure or creature can have the same sense and reason, that is, the same natural motions which another has; and therefore no Stone can be said to feel pain as an Animal doth, or be called blind because it has no Eyes; for this kind of sense, as Seeing, Hearing, Tasting, Touching and Smelling, is proper onely to an Animal figure, and not to a Stone, which is a Mineral; so that those which frame an argument from the want of animal sense and sensitive organs, to the defect of all sense and motion; as for example, that a Stone would withdraw it self from the Carts going over it, or a piece of Iron from the hammering of a Smith, conclude, in my opinion, ve­ry much against the artificial rules of Logick; and although I understand none of them, yet I question not but I shall make a better argument by the Rules of Natural Logick: But that this difference of sense and reason is not altogether impossible, or at least im­probable to our understanding, I will explain by ano­ther instance. We see so many several Creatures in their several kinds, to wit, Elements, Vegetables, Mi­nerals, [Page 48] and Animals, which are the chief distinctions of those kinds of Creatures as are subject to our sensitive perceptions; and in all those, what variety and diffe­rence do we find both in their exterior figures, and in their interior natures? truly such, as most of both an­cient and modern Philosophers have imagined some of them, viz. the Elements, to be simple bodies, and the principles of all other Creatures; nay, those several Creatures do not onely differ so much from each other in their general kinds, but there is no less difference per­ceived in their particular kinds: for example, con­cerning Elements, what difference is there not between heavy and contracting Earth, and between light and dilating Air? between flowing Water, and ascending Fire? so as it would be an endless labour to consider all the different natures of those Creatures onely that are subject to our exterior senses. And yet who dares deny that they all consist of Matter, or are material? Thus we see that Infinite Matter is not like a piece of Clay, out of which no figure can be made, but it must be clayie, for natural Matter has no such narrow bounds, and is not forced to make all Creatures alike; for though Gold and Stone are both material, nay, of the same kind, to wit, Minerals, yet one is not the other, nor like the other. And if this be true of Matter, why may not the same be said of self-motion, which is Sense and Reason? Wherefore, in all probability of truth, there is sense and reason in a Mineral, as well as in an [Page 49] Animal, and in a Vegetable as well as in an Element, al­though there is as great a difference between the man­ner and way of their sensitive and rational perceptions, as there is between both their exterior and interior fi­gures and Natures. Nay, there is a difference of sense and reason even in the parts of one and the same Creature, and consequently of sensitive and rational perception or knowledg; for, as I have declared here­tofore more at large, every sensitive organ in man hath its peculiar way of knowledg and perception; for the Eye doth not know what the Ear knows, nor the Ear what the Nose knows, &c. All which is the cause of a general ignorance between Natures parts: And the chief cause of all this difference is the variety of self­motion; for if natural motion were in all Creatures a­like, all sense and reason would be alike too; and if there were no degrees of matter, all the figures of Crea­tures would be alike, either all hard, or all soft; all dense, or all rare and fluid, &c. and yet neither this variety of motion causes an absence of motion, or of sense and reason, nor the variety of figures an absence of Matter, but onely a difference between the parts of Nature, all being nevertheless self-moving, sensible and rational, as well as Material; for wheresoever is natural Mat­ter, there is also self-motion, and consequently sense and reason. By this we may see, how easie it is to con­ceive the actions of Nature, and to resolve all the Phae­nomena or appearances upon this ground; and I can­not [Page 50] admire enough, how so many eminent and learned Philosophers have been, and are still puzled about the Natural rational soul of man. Some will have her to be a Light; some an Entilechy, or they know not what; some the Quintessence of the four Elements; some com­posed of Earth and Water, some of Fire, some of Blood, some an hot Complexion, some an heated and dispersed Air, some an Immaterial Spirit, and some Nothing. All which opinions seem the more strange, the wiser their Authors are accounted; for if they did proceed from some ignorant persons, it would not be so much taken notice of; but coming from great Philosophers, who pretend to have searched the depth of Nature, and disclosed her secrets, it causes great admiration in any body, and may well serve for an argument to confirm the variety and difference of sensitive and rational knowledg, and the ignorance amongst natural parts; for if Creatures of the same particular kind, as men, have so many different Perceptions, what may there be in all Nature? But Infinite Nature is wise, and will not have that one part of hers should know more then its particular nature requires, and she taking de­light in variety, orders her works accordingly.

16. Whether Animal Parts separated from their Bo­dies have Life.

SOme do question, Whether those Parts that are separated from animal Bodies do retain life? But my opinion is, That all parts of Nature have life, each according to the propriety of its figure, and that all parts of an animal have animal life and motion as long as they continue parts of the animal body; but if they be separated from the body to which they did belong, although they retain life, yet they do not retain animal life, because their natural motions are changed to some other figure when they are separated, so that the parts which before had animal life and motion, have then such a kind of life and motion as is proper and natural to the figure into which they are changed or transform­ed. But some separated parts of some Creatures retain longer the life of that composed figure whose parts they were, then others, according as the dissolving and transforming motions are slower or quicker; as for ex­ample, in some Vegetables, some Trees, if their boughs, armes, or branches, be lopt or cut from a lively stock, those boughs or branches will many times re­main lively, according to the nature of the figure whose parts they were, for a good while; nay, if they be set or planted, they will grow into the same figure as the stock was; or if joyned into another stock, they will [Page 52] be partly of the nature of the stock which they did pro­ceed from, and partly of the nature of the stock into which they were ingrafted; But yet I do not perceive that animal kind can do the like; for I make a questi­on, whether a man's arm, if cut off from his body, and set to another mans body, would grow, and keep its natural form and figure, so as to continue an arm, and to receive nourishment from that body it is joyned to? nevertheless, I will not eagerly contradict it, consider­ing that Nature is very different and various both in her productions and nourishments, nay, so various, as will puzzle, if not confound, the wisest part or Crea­ture of Nature to find them out.

17. Of the Splene.

COncerning the splene of an animal Creature, whe­ther it may artificially be cut out, and the body closed up again, without destruction of the animal fi­gure, as some do probably conceive, I am not so good an artist as to give a solid judgment thereof; onely this I can say, that not all the parts of an animal body are equally necessary for life; but some are convenient more then necessary: Neither do I perfectly know whether the Splene be one of the prime or principal vital parts; for although all parts have life, yet some in some particular Creatures are so necessary for the preservation of life, as they cannot be spared; whereas [Page 53] others have no such relation to the life of an Animal, but it may subsist without them: And thus although some parts may be separated for some time, yet they cannot continue so, without a total dissolution of the animal fi­gure; but both the severed, and the remaining parts change from their nature, if not at all times suddenly, yet at last: And as for the spleen, although the separa­tion should not be so great a loss as the pain in loosing it, yet some persons will rather lose their lives with ease, then endure great pain to save them: but the question is, if a man was willing to endure the pain, whether he would not die of the wound; for no creature can assure another of its life in such a case, neither can any one be assured of his own; for there is no assurance in the case of life and death, I mean such a life as is proper to such a Creature, for properly there is no such thing in Na­ture as death, but what is named death, is onely a change from the dissolution of some certain figure to the com­position of another.

18. Of Anatomy.

I Am not of the opinion of those, who believe that Anatomifts could gain much more by dissecting of li­ving then of dead bodies, by reason the corporeal figu­rative motions that maintain life, and nourish every part of the body, are not at all perceptible by the exte­rior Optick sense, unless it be more perceiving and sub­tiler [Page 54] then the humane optick sense is; for although the exterior grosser parts be visible, yet the interior corpo­real motions in those parts are not visible; wherefore the dissecting of a living Creature can no more inform one of the natural motions of that figure, then one can by the observing of an egg, be it never so exact, per­ceive the corporeal figurative motions that produce or make the figure of a Chicken: Neither can artificial optick glasses give any advantage to it; for Nature is so subtil, obscure and various, as not any sort or kind of Creatures can trace or know her ways: I will not say, but her parts may in their several Perceptions know as much as can be known; for some parts may know and be known of others, and so the infinite body may have an infinite information and knowledg; but no particular Creature, no not one kind or sort of Creatures can have a perfect knowledg of another particular Creature; but it must content it self with an imperfect knowledg, which is a knowledg in Parts. Wherefore it is as im­probable for humane sight to perceive the interior cor­poreal figurative motions of the parts of an animal body by Anatomy, as it is for a Micrographer to know the interior parts of a figure by viewing the exterior; for there are numerous corporeal figures or figurative mo­tions of one particular Creature, which lie one with­in another, and most commonly the interior are quite different from the exterior; as for example, the out­ward parts of a mans body are not like his inward [Page 55] parts; for his brain, stomack, liver, lungs, splene, midriff, heart, guts, &c. are of different figures, and one part is not another part, no not of the like nature or constitution; neither hath a man a face on the inside of his head, and so of the rest of his parts; for every part has besides its exterior, interior figure and motions, which are not perceptible by our exterior senses. Ne­vertheless there is some remedy to supply this sensitive ignorance by the perception of Reason; for where sense fails, reason many times informs, it being a more clear and subtile perception then sense is; I say many times, because reason can neither be always assured of know­ing the Truth; for particular Reason may sometimes be deceived as well as sense; but when the Perceptions both of sense and reason agree, then the information is more true, I mean regular sense and reason, not irregu­lar, which causes mistakes, and gives false informations; also the Presentation of the objects ought to be true, and without delusion.

19. Of preserving the Figures of Animal Creatures.

I Am absolutely of the opinion of those, who believe Natural Philosophy may promote not onely Ana­tomy, but all other Arts, for else they would not be worth the taking of pains to learn them by reason the rational perceptions are beyond the sensitive. I am also of opinion, that there may be an Art to preserve the [Page 56] exterior shapes of some animal bodies, but not their interior forms; for although their exterior shapes, e­ven after the dissolution of the animal figure, may be some what like the shapes and figures of their bodies when they had the life of an animal, yet they being transformed into some other Creatures by the altera­tion of their interior figurative motions, can no ways keep the same interior figure which they had when they were living animals. Concerning the preserving of blood by the means of spirit of Wine, as some do pro­bably believe, my opinion is, That spirit of Wine, otherwise call'd Hot-water, if taken in great quantity, will rather dry up or putrifie the blood, then preserve it; nay, not onely the blood, but also the more solid parts of an animal body, insomuch as it will cause a total dissolution of the animal figure; and some animal Creatures that have blood, will be dissolved in Wine, which yet is not so strong as extracts or spirit of Wine: But blood mingled with spirit of Wine, may perhaps retain somewhat of the colour of blood, although the nature and propriety of blood be quite altered. As for the instance of preserving dead fish or flesh from putrifying and stinking, alledged by some; we see that ordinary salt will do the same with less cost; and as spirits of Wine, or hot Waters, may like salt pre­serve some dead bodies from corruption, so may they, by making too much or frequent use of them, also cause living bodies to corrupt and dissolve sooner then [Page 57] otherwise they would do. But Chymists are so much for extracts, that by their frequent use and application, they often extract humane life out of humane bodies, instead of preserving it.

20. Of Chymistry and Chymical Principles.

IT is sufficiently known, and I have partly made mention above, what a stir Natural Philoso­phers do keep concerning the principles of Nature and natural Beings, and how different their opinions are. The Schools following Aristotle are for the Four Ele­ments, which they believe to be simple bodies, as having no mixture in themselves, and therefore fit­test to be principles of all other mixt or compound­ed bodies; But my Reason cannot apprehend what they mean by simple bodies; I confess that some bodies are more mixt then others; that is, they consist of more differing parts, such as the learned call Heterogeneous; as for example, Animals consist of flesh, blood, skin, bones, muscles, nerves, tendons, gristles, and the like, all which are parts of different figures: Other bodies again are composed of such parts as are of the same na­ture, which the learned call Homogeneous; as for ex­ample, Water, Air, &c. whose parts have no differ­ent figures, but are all alike each other, at least to our perception; besides, there are bodies which are more rare and subtile than others, according to the degrees [Page 58] of their natural figurative motions, and the composi­on of their parts; Nevertheless I see no reason, why those Homogeneous bodies should be called simple, and all others mixt, or composed of them; much less why they should be principles of all other natural bodies; for they derive their origine from matter, as well as the rest; so that it is onely the different composure of their parts, that makes a difference between them, proceeding from the variety of self-motion, which is the cause of all dif­ferent figures in nature; for as several work-men join in the building of one house, and several men in the fra­ming of one Government; so do several parts in the ma­king or forming of one composed figure.

But they'l say, it is not the likeness of parts that makes the Four Elements to be principles of natural things; but because there are no natural bodies, besides the menti­oned Elements that are not composed of them, as is evi­dent in the dissolution of their parts; for example, A piece of Green wood that is burning in a Chimney, we may readily discern the Four Elements in its dissolution, out of which it is composed; for the fire discovers it self in the flame, the smoak turns into air, the water hisses and boils at the ends of the wood, and the ashes are nothing but the Element of earth: But if they have no better arguments to prove their principles, they shall not rea­dily gain my consent; for I see no reason why wood should be composed of the Four Elements, because it burns, smoaks, hisses, and turns into ashes; Fire is none of its [Page 59] natural ingredients, but a different figure, which being mixt with the parts of the wood, is an occasion that the Wood turns into ashes; neither is Water a princi­ple of Wood; for Water is as much a figure by it self; as Wood or Fire is, which being got into the parts of the wood, and mixt with the same, is expelled by the fire, as by its opposite; but if it be a piece of dry, and not of green wood, where is then the water that boils out? Surely dry wood hath no less principles, then green wood; and as for smoak, it proves no more, that it is the Element of Air in Wood, then that Wood is the Ele­ment of Fire; for Wood, as experience witnesses, may last in water, where it is kept from the air; and smoak is rather an effect of moisture, occasioned into such a figure by the commixture of fire.

Others, as Helmont, who derives his opinion from Thales and others of the ancient Philosophers, are on­ly for the Element of Water; affirming, that that is the sole principle, out of which all natural things consist; for say they, the Chaos where of all things were made, was nothing else but water, which first setled into slime, and then condensed into solid earth; nay, some endeavour to prove by Chymical Experiments, that they have disposed water according to their Chymical way, so that it visibly turn'd into earth, which earth pro­duced animals, vegetables and minerals. But put the case it were so, yet this doth not prove water to be the onely principle of all natural beings; for first, we can­not [Page 60] think, that animals, vegetables and minerals are the onely kinds of creatures in Nature; and that there are no more but them: for nature being infinitely various, may have infinite Worlds, and so infinite sorts of Crea­tures: Next I say, that the change of water into earth, and of this again into vegetables, minerals and animals, proves no more but what our senses perceive every day, to wit, that there is a perpetual change and alteration in all natural parts, caused by corporeal self-motion, by which rare bodies change into dense, and dense into rare, wa­ter into slime, slime into earth, earth into animals, ve­getables and minerals, and those again into earth, earth into slime, slime into water, and so forth: But I won­der why rational men should onely rest upon water, and go no further, since daily experience informs them, that water is changed into vapour, and vapour into air; for if water be resolveable into other bodies, it cannot be a prime cause, and consequently no principle of Nature; wherefore they had better, in my opinion, to make Air the principle of all things. 'Tis true, Water may pro­duce many creatures, as I said before, by a compositi­on with other, or change of its own parts; but yet I dare say, it doth kill or destroy as many, nay more, then it produces; witness vegetables and others, which Hus­bandmen and Planters have best experience of; and though some animals live in water as their proper Ele­ment; yet to most it is destructive, I mean, as for their particular natures; nay if men do but dwell in a moist [Page 61] place, or near marrish grounds, or have too much watery humors in their bodies, they'l sooner die then otherwise. But put the case, water were a principle of Natural things, yet it must have motion, or else it would never be able to change into so many figures; and this motion must either be naturally inherent in the substance of water, or it must proceed from some exterior agent; if from an exterior agent, then this agent must either be material, or immaterial; also if all motion in Nature did proceed from pres­sure of parts upon parts; then those parts which press others, must either have motion inherent in themselves; or if they be moved by others, we must at last proceed to something which has motion in it self, and is not moved by another, but moves all things; and if we allow this, Why may not we allow self-mo­tion in all things? for if one part of Matter has self­motion, it cannot be denied of all the rest: but if immaterial, it must either be God himself, or created supernatural spirits: As for God, he being immove­able, and beyond all natural motion, cannot actually move Matter; neither is it Religious, to say, God is the Soul of Nature; for God is no part of Nature, as the soul is of the body; And immaterial spirits, be­ing supernatural, cannot have natural attributes or actions, such as is corporeal, natural motion. Wherefore it remains, that Matter must be naturally self-moving, and consequently all parts of Nature, all being ma­terial; [Page 62] so that not onely Water, Earth, Fire, and Air, but all other natural bodies whatsoever, have natural self-motion inherent in themselves; by which it is evi­dent, that there can be no other principle in Nature, but this self-moving Matter, and that all the rest are but effects of this onely cause.

Some are of opinion, That the three Catholick or Universal principles of Nature, are, Matter, Motion and Rest; and others with Epicure, that they are Magni­tude, Figure and Weight; but although Matter and Motion, or rather self-moving Matter, be the onely principle of Nature; yet they are mistaken in dividing them from each other, and adding rest to the number of them, for Matter and Motion are but one thing, and cannot make different principles; aud so is figure, weight and magnitude. 'Tis true, Matter might sub­sist without Motion, but not Motion without Matter; for there is no such thing as an immaterial Motion, but Motion must necessarily be of something; also if there be a figure, it must of necessity be a figure of some­thing; the same may be said of magnitude and weight, there being no such thing as a mean between some­thing and nothing, that is, between body, and no bo­dy in Nature: If Motion were immaterial, it is be­yond all humane capacity to conceive, how it could be abstracted from something; much more, how it could be a principle to produce a natural being, it might easier be believed, that Matter was perishable or reduceable [Page 63] into nothing, then that motion, figure and magnitude should be separable from Matter, or be immaterial, as the opinion is of those who introduce a Vacuum in Na­ture; and as for Rest, I wonder how that can be a principle of any production, change or alteration, which it self acts nothing.

Others are for Atomes and insensible particles, con­sisting of different figures and particular natures; not otherwise united but by a bare apposition, as they call it; by which although perhaps the composed body obtains new qualities, yet still the ingredients retain each their own Nature, and in the destru­ction of the composed body, those that are of one sort associate, and return into Fire, Water, Earth, &c. as they were before: But whatever their opinion of Atoms be, first I have heretofore declared that there can be no such things as single bodies or Atomes in Na­ture: Next, if there were any such particles in com­posed bodies, yet they are but parts or effects of Mat­ter, and not principles of Nature, or Natural be­ings.

Lastly, Chymists do constitute the principles of all natural bodies, Salt, Sulphur and Mercury. But although I am not averse from believing that those in­gredients may be mixt with other parts of Nature in the composition of natural figures, and that (especially) Salt may be extracted out of many Creatures; yet that it should be the constitutive principle of all other na­tural [Page 64] parts or figures, seems no ways conformable to truth; for salt is no more then other effects of Nature; and although some extractions may convert some sub­stances into salt figures, and some into others, (for Art by the leave of her Mistress, Nature, doth oftentimes occasion an alteration of natural Creatures into artifi­cial) yet these extractions cannot inform us how those natural creatures are made, and of what ingredients they consist; for they do not prove, that the same Creatures are composed of Salt, or mixt with Salt; but cause onely those substances which they extract, to change into saline figures, like as others do convert them into Chymical spirits; all which are but Herma­phroditical effects, that is, between natural and arti­ficial; Just as a Mule partakes both of the nature or figure of a Horse, and an Ass: Nevertheless, as Mules are very beneficial for use, so many Chymical effects, provided they be discreetly and seasonably u­sed; for Minerals are no less beneficial to the life and health of Man, then Vegetables, and Vegetables may be as hurtful and destructive as Minerals by an un­seasonable and unskilful application; besides, there may be Chymical extracts made of Vegetables as well as of Minerals, but these are bestused in the height or extremity of some diseases, like as cordial waters in fainting fits; and some Chymical spirits are as far beyond cordial waters, as fire is beyond smoak; which cannot be but dangerous, and unfit to be used; except it be [Page 65] to encounter opposite extreams. By extreams, I mean not the extreams of Nature, but the height of a distem­per, when it is grown so far, that it is upon point of de­stroying or dissolving a particular animal figure; for Nature, being infinite, has no extreams; neither in her substance, nor actions; for she has nothing that is opposite to Matter, neither is there any such thing as most or least in Nature, she being infinite, and all her actions are ballanced by their opposites; as for example, there is no dilation but hath opposite to it contraction; no condensation but has its opposite, viz. rarefaction; no composition but hath its opposite, division; no gravity without levity; no grossness without purity; no animate without inanimate; no regularity without irregularity: All which produces a peaceable, orderly, and wise Government in Natures Kingdom, which wise Artists ought to imitate.

But you may say, How is it possible, That there can be a peaceable and orderly Government, where there are so many contrary or opposite actions; for contraries make war, not peace?

I answer: Although the actions of Nature are op­posite, yet Nature, in her own substance is at peace, because she is one and the same; that is, one material body, and has nothing without her self to oppose and cross her; neither is she subject to a general change, so as to alter her own substance from being Matter, for she is Infinite and Eternal: but because she is self­moving, [Page 66] and full of variety of figures, this variety can­not be produced without variety of actions, no not without opposition; which opposition is the cause, that there can be no extreams in particulars; for it ballances each action, so that it cannot run into infinite, which otherwise would breed a horrid confusion in Na­ture.

And thus much of Principles: Concerning the par­ticulars of Chymical preparations, I being not versed in that Art, am not able to give my judgment thereof, neither do I understand their terms and expressions: as first, what Chymists mean by Fixation; for there's nothing in Nature that can properly be called fixt, be­cause Nature, and all her parts, are perpetually self­moving; onely Nature cannot be altered from being material, nor from being dependant upon God.

Neither do I apprehend what some mean by the unlocking of bodies, unless they understand by it, a sepa­ration of natural parts proper for artificial uses; nei­ther can natural effects be separated by others, any o­therwise but occasionally; so that some parts may be an occasion of such or such alterations in other parts. But I must say this, that according to humane sense and reason, there is no part or particle in Nature which is not alterable, by reason Nature is in a perpetual moti­on, and full of variety. 'Tis true, some bodies, as Gold and Mercury, seem to be unalterable from their particular natures; but this onely appears thus to our [Page 67] senses, because their parts are more fixt and retentive then others, and no Art has been found out as yet which could alter ther proper and particular figures, that is, untie and dissolve, or rather cause an alteration of their corporeal retentive motions, that bind them into so fixt and consistent a body; but all that is mixt with them, has hitherto been found too weak for the altera­tion of ther inherent motions; Nevertheless, this doth not prove, that they are not altogether unalterable; for though Art cannot do it, yet Nature may; but it is an argument that they are not composed of straying A­tomes, or most minute particles; for not to mention what I have often repeated before, that there cannot be such most minute bodies in Nature, by reason Na­ture knows of no extreams, it is altogether improbable, nay, impossible, that wandering corpuscles should be the cause of such fixt effects, and by their association constitute such indissoluble masses or clusters, as some do conceive, which they call primary concretions; for there is no such thing as a primary concretion or com­position in Nature; onely there are several sorts and degrees of motions, and several sorts of compositions; and as no particular creature can know the strength of motion, so neither can it know the degrees of strength in particular natural bodies. Wherefore although composition and division of parts are general motions, and some figures may be more composed then others, that is, consist of more or fewer parts then others; yet [Page 68] there is none that hath not a composition of parts: The truth is, there is nothing prime or principal amongst the effects of Nature, but onely the cause from which they are produced, which is self-moving Matter, which is above particular effects: yet Nature may have more ways then our particular reason can apprehend; and therefore it is not to be admired that Camphor, and the like bodies do yield differing effects, according to the different occasions that make them move thus or thus; for though changes and alterations of particu­lars may be occasioned by others; yet they move by their own corporeal figurative motions; as it is evident by the power of fire, which makes other bodies move or change their parts and figures, not by its own transforming motion, but onely by giving an occasion to the inherent figurative motions of those bodies, which by imitating the motions of fire, change into such or such figures by their own proper, innate and inherent mo­tions; otherwise if the alteration of combustible bodies proceeded from fire, they would all have the like mo­tions, which is contradicted by experience. I will not deny, but there is as much variety in occasioning, as there is in acting; for the imitation is according to the object, but the object is not the immediate agent, but onely an occasional efficient; so that, according to my opinion, there is no such difference, as the learned make between Patient and Agent, when they call the exte­rior occasional cause; as for example, Fire, the Agent; [Page 69] and the combustible body the Patient; for they con­ceive that a body thrown into fire, acts nothing at all, but onely in a passive way suffers the fire to act upon it, according to the degree of its own, to wit, the fires strength, which sense and reason perceives other­wise; for to pass by what I mentioned before, that those bodies on which they suppose fire doth work, change according not to the fires, but their own inhe­rent figurative motions; it is most certain, that if Na­ture and all her parts be self-moving, which regular reason cannot deny; and if Self-motion be corporeal, then every part of Nature must of necessity move by its own motion; for no body can impart motion to ano­ther body, without imparting substance also; and though particular motions in particular bodies may change infinite ways, yet they cannot quit those bodies, so as to leave them void and destitute of all motion, be­cause Matter and Motion are but one thing; and there­fore though fire be commixed with the parts of the fuel, yet the fuel alters by its own motion, and the fire doth but act occasionally; and so do Chymical spi­rits or extracts, which may cause a separation, and alter some bodies as readily as fire doth; for they are a cer­tain kind of fire, to wit, such as is called a dead or li­quid fire; for a flaming fire, although it be fluid, yet it is not liquid: The same may be said of the Antimo­nial-Cup. For it is not probable to sense and reason, there should be certain invisible little bodies, that pass [Page 70] out of the Cup into the liquor, and cause such effects, no more then there are magnetical effluviums issuing out of the Load-stone towards Iron, there being many causes, which neither impart nor lose any thing in the production of their effects; but the liquor that is with­in the Antimonial Cup, does imitate the corporeal figu­rative motions of the Cup, and so produces the same effects, as are proper to Antimony, upon other bodies or parts of Nature. In the same manner does the Blood-stone stop bleeding; not by imparting invisible Atomes or Rays to the affected parts, (or else if it were long worn about ones body, it would be wasted, at least alter its proper figure and vertue) but by being imi­tated by the corporeal figurative motions of the distem­pered parts. Thus many other examples could be alledged to prove, that natural motions work such or such effects within their own parts, without receiving any from without, that is, by imitation, and not by reception of Motion. By which it is evident, that properly there is no passive, or suffering body in Nature, except it be the inanimate part of Matter, which in its own nature is moveless or destitute of motion, and is carried along with, and by the animate parts of Mat­ter: However, although inanimate Matter has no motion inherent in it self, as it is inanimate; yet it is so closely mixt with the animate parts, that it can­not be considered without motion, much less be sepa­rable from it; and therefore although it acts not of [Page 71] it self, yet it acts by vertue of the animate parts of Matter.

Next: I cannot conceive what some Chymists mean, when they call those Principles or Elements, which, they say, composed bodies consist of, distinct substances; for though they may be of different figures, yet they are not of different substances; because there is but one onely substance in Nature, which is Matter, whose se­veral actions cause all the variety in Nature. But if all the parts of Natural bodies should be called Principles or Elements, then there would be infinite Principles in Nature, which is impossible; because there can be no more but one principle, which is, self-moving Matter; and although several Creatures, by the help of fire, may be reduced or dissolved into several diffe­rent particles, yet those particles are not principles, much less simple bodies, or else we might say, as well, that ashes are a principle of Wood: Neither are they created anew, because they are of another form or figure then when composed into one concrete body; for there's nothing that is material, which is not pre-existent in Nature; no nor figure, motion, or the like, all being material, although not always subject to our hu­mane sensitive perception; for the variation of the cor­poreal figurative motions blindeth our particular senses, that we cannot perceive them, they being too subtile to be discerned either by Art or humane perception. The truth is, if we could see the corporeal figurative mo­tions [Page 72] of natural creatures, and the association and di­vision of all their parts, we should soon find out the causes which make them to be such or such particular natural effects; but Nature is too wise to be so easily known by her particulars.

Wherefore Chymists need not think they can cre­ate any thing anew; for they cannot challenge to them­selves a divine power, neither can there be any such thing as a new Creation in Nature, no not of an A­tome; Nor can they annihilate any thing; they [...] sooner waste their Estates, then reduce the least par­ticle of Matter into nothing; and though they make waste of some parts of natural bodies, yet those are but changes into other figures, there being a perpe­tual inspiration and expiration, that is, composition and division of parts; but composition is not a new Creation, nor division an annihilation; and though they produce new forms, as they imagine; yet those forms, though they be new to them, are not new in Nature; for all that is material, has been existent in Nature from all Eternity; so that the combination of parts cannot produce anything that is not already in Nature. Indeed the generation of new figures, seems to me much like the generation of new motions; which would put God to a perpetual Creation, and argue that he was not able to make Nature or Mat­ter perfect at first, or that he wanted imployment. But, say they, it is not Matter that is created anew, but [Page 73] onely figures or forms. I answer: If any one can shew me a figure without Matter, I shall be willing to believe it; but I am confident Nature cannot do that, much less Art, which is but a particular effect; for as Matter cannot be without Figure, so neither can Fi­gure be without Matter, no more then body without parts, or parts without body; and if so, no figure or form can be created without Matter, there being no such thing as a substanceless form. Chymists should but consider their own particular persons; as whether they were generated anew, or had been in Nature be­fore they were got of their Parents; if they had not been pre-existent in Nature, they would not be natu­ral, but supernatural Creatures; because they would not subsist of the same matter, as other Creatures do. Truly, Matter being Infinite, how some new mate­rial creatures could be created without some parts of this Infinite Matter, is not conceivable by humane sense and reason; for infinite admits of no addition; but if there could be an addition, it would presuppose an an­nihilation, so that at the same time when one part is annihilating or perishing, another must succeed by a new creation, which is a meer Paradox.

But that which puzles me most, is, how those sub­stances, which they call Tria Prima, and princi­ples of natural things, can be generated anew; for if the principles be generated anew, the effects must be so too; and since they, according to their supposition, [Page 74] are Catholick or Universal principles, all natural ef­fects must have their origine from them, and be, like their principles, created continually anew; which how it be possible, without the destruction of Nature, is beyond my reason to conceive. Some endeavour to prove, by their Artificial Experiments, that they have and can produce such things out of natural bodies, which never were pre-existent in them; as for exam­ple, Glass out of Vegetables, without any addition of forreign parts onely, by the help of fire. To which I answer: That, in my opinion, the same Glass was as much pre-existent in the matter of those Vegetables, and the Fire, and in the power of their corporeal figura­tive motions, as any other figure whatsoever; other­wise it would never have been produced; nay, not onely Glass, but millions of other figures might be ob­tained from those parts, they being subject to infinite changes; for the actions of self-moving Matter are so infinitely various, that according to the mixture, or composition and division of parts, they can produce what figures they please; not by a new Creation, but on­ly a change or alteration of their own parts; and though some parts act not to the production of such or such fi­gures; yet we cannot say, that those figures are not in Nature, or in the power of corporeal, figurative self­motion; we might say, as well, that a man cannot go, when he sits; or has no motion, when he sleeps; as believe, that it is not in the power of Nature to pro­duce [Page 75] such or such effects or actions, when they are not actually produced; for, as I said before, although Nature be but one material substance, yet there are in­finite mixtures of infinite parts, produced by infinite self-motion, infinite ways; in so much, that seldom any two Creatures, even those of one sort, do exactly re­semble each other.

But some may say, How is it possible, That figure, being all one with Matter, can change; and matter remain still the same without any change or altera­tion?

I answer: As well as an animal body can put it self into various and different postures, without any change of its interior animal figure; for though figure cannot subsist without matter, nor matter without figure, ge­nerally considered; yet particular parts of matter are not bound to certain particular figures: Matter in its ge­neral nature remains always the same, and cannot be changed from being Matter, but by the power of self­motion it may change from being such or such a par­ticular figure: for example, Wood is as much matter as Stone; but it is not of the same figure, nor has it the same interior innate motions which Stone hath, be­cause it has not the like composition of parts, as other creatures of other figures have; and though some fi­gures be more constant or lasting then others, yet this does not prove, that they are not subject to changes as well as those that alter daily, nay, every moment; much [Page 76] less, that they are without motion; for not all motions are dividing or dissolving; but some are retentive, some composing, some attractive, some expulsive, some contractive, some dilative, and infinite other sorts of motions, as 'tis evident by the infinite variety which appears in the differing effects of Nature: Neverthe­less it is no consequence, that, because the effects are dif­ferent, they must also have different principles; For first, all effects of Nature are material; which proves, they have but one principle, which is the onely infinite Matter: Next, they are all self-moving; which proves, that this material principle has self-mo­tion; for without self-motion there would be no va­riety or change of figures, it being the nature of self­motion to be perpetually acting.

Thus Matter and Self-motion, being inseparably united in one infinite body, which is self-moving ma­terial Nature, is the onely cause of all the infinite effects that are produced in Nature, and not the Aristoteleon Elements, or Chymists Tria prima, which sense and reason perceives to be no more but effects; or else if we should call all those Creatures principles, which by the power of their own inherent motions, change into o­ther figures, we shall be forced to make infinite prin­ciples, and so confound principles with effects; and after this manner, that which is now an effect, will become a principle; and what is now a principle, will become an effect; which will lead our sense and reason [Page 77] into a herrid confusion and labyrinth of ignorance.

Wherefore I will neither follow the Opinions of the Ancient, nor of our Moderns in this point, but search the truth of Nature, by the light of regular reason; for I perceive that most of our modern Wri­tings are not fill'd with new Inventions of their own, but like a lumber, stuff'd with old Commodities, botch'd and dress'd up anew, contain nothing but what has been said in former ages. Nor am I of the opinion of our Divine Philosophers, who mince Phi­losophy and Divinity, Faith and Reason, together; and count it Irreligious, if not Blasphemy, to assert any other principles of Nature, then what they (I will not say, by head and shoulders) draw out of the Scripture, especially out of Genesis, to evince the finiteness, and beginning of Nature; when as Moses doth onely describe the Creation of this World, and not of Infinite Nature: But as Pure natural Phi­losophers do not meddle with Divinity, or things Su­pernatural, so Divines ought not to intrench upon Natural Philosophy.

Neither are Chymists the onely natural Philoso­phers, because they are so much tied to the Art of Fire, and regulate or measure all the effects of Nature according to their Artificial Experiments; which do delude rather then inform their sense and reason; and although they pretend to a vast and greater knowledg then all the rest, yet they have not dived so deep into [Page 78] Nature yet, as to perceive that she is full of sense and reason, which is life and knowledg; and in parts, or­ders parts proper to parts, which causes all the various motions, figures and changes in the infinite parts of Nature; Indeed, no Creature, that has its reason re­gular, can almost believe, that such wise and orderly actions should be done either by chance, or by stray­ing Atomes, which cannot so constantly change and exchange parts, and mix and join so properly, and to such constant effects as are apparent in Nature. And as for Galenists, if they believe that some parts of Nature connot leave or pass by other parts, to join, meet, or encounter others, they are as much in an er­ror as Chymists, concerning the power of fire and fur­nace; for it is most frequently observed thus amongst all sorts of Animals; and if amongst Animals, I know no reason but all other kinds and sorts of Creatures may do the like; nay, both sense and reason inform us they do, as appears by the several and proper actions of all sorts of drugs, as also Minerals and Elements, and the like; so that none ought to wonder how it is possible, that medicines that must pass through digestions in the body, should, neglecting all other parts, shew them­selves friendly onely to the brain or kidnies, or the like parts; for if there be sense and reason in Nature, all things must act wisely and orderly, and not confused­ly; and though Art, like an Emulating Ape, strives to imitate Nature, yet it is so far from producing natural [Page 79] figures, that at best, it rather produces Monsters in­stead of natural effects; for it is like the Painter, who drew a Rose instead of a Lion; nevertheless Art is as active as any other natural Creature, and doth never want imployment; for it is like all other parts, in a perpe­tual self-motion; and although the interior actions of all other parts do not appear to our senses, yet they may be perceived by regular reason; for what sense wants, rea­son supplies, which oftener rectifies the straying and erring senses, then these do reason, as being more pure, subtile and free from labouring on the inanimate parts of Matter, then sense is, as I have often declared; which proves, that reason is far beyond sense; and this appears also in Chymistry, which yet is so much for sensitive experiments; for when the effects do not readily follow, according to our intentions, reason is fain to consider and enquire into the causes that hinder or obstruct the success of our designs. And if reason be above sense, then Speculative Philosophy ought to be preferred before the Experimental, because there can no reason be given for any thing without it. I will not say, that all Arts have their first origine from Rea­son; for what we name chance, does often present to the sensitive perception such things which the rational does afterwards take into consideration; but my mean­ing is, that for the most part, Reason leads and directs the ways of Art; and I am of opinion, that Contem­plative Philosophy is the best Tutoress, and gives the [Page 80] surest instructions to Art, and amongst the rest to the Art of Chymistry, which no doubt is very profi­table to man many several ways, and very soveraign in many desperate diseases, if discreetly and moderately used; but if Chymical medicines should be so com­monly applied as others, they would sooner kill, then cure; and if Paracelsus was as frequently practised as Galen, it would be as bad as the Plague: Wherefore Chymical Medicines are to be used as the extreme Un­ction in desperate cases, and that with great moderation and discretion.

21. Of the Universal Medicine, and of Diseases.

IAm not of the opinion, that there can be a Univer­sal Medicine for all diseases, except it be proved, that all kinds of Diseases whatsoever, proceed from one cause; which I am sure can never be done, by reason there is as much variety in the causes of diseases, as in the dis­eases themselves. You may say, All diseases proceed but from irregular motions. I answer: These irre­gular motions are so numerous, different and various, that all the Artists in Nature are not able to rectifie them. Nay, they might sooner make or create a new Matter, then rectifie the irregularities of Nature more then Nature herself is pleased to do; for though Art may be an occasion of the changes of some parts or motions, of their compositions and divisions, imita­tions, [Page 81] and the like; like as a Painter takes a copy from an original, yet it cannot alter infinite Nature; for a man may build or pull down a house, but yet he can­not make the materials, although he may fit or prepare them for his use: so Artists may dissolve and compose several parts several ways, but yet they cannot make the matter of those parts; and therefore although they may observe the effects, yet they cannot always give a true or probable reason why they are so, nor know the several particular causes which make them to be so: To see the effects, belongs to the perception of sense; but to judg of the cause, belongs onely to reason; and since there is an ignorance as well as a perceptive knowledg in Nature, no creature can absolutely know or have a thorow perception of all things, but according as the corporeal figurative motions are, so are the percepti­ons; not onely in one composed figure, but also in e­very part and particle of the same figure; for one and the same parts may make several perceptions in several Creatures, according to their several figurative moti­ons. But reason being above sense, is more inspective then sense; and although sense doth many times inform reason, yet reason being more subtile, piercing and active, doth oftener inform and rectifie the senses when they are irregular; nay, some rational parts inform others, like as one man will inform another of his own voluntary conceptions, or of his exterior perceptions; and some sensitive parts will inform others, as one Ar­tist [Page 82] another; and although Experimental Phylosophy is not to be rejected, yet the Speculative is much bet­ter, by reason it guides, directs and governs the Ex­perimental; but as knowledg and understanding is more clear, where both the rational and sensitive perception do join; so Experimental and Speculative Philosophy do give the surest informations, when they are joined or united together.

But to return to the Universal Medicine; although I do not believe there is any, nor that all Diseases are curable; yet my advice is, that no applications of re­medies should be neglected in any disease whatsoever; because diseases cannot be so perfectly known, but that they may be mistaken, and so even the most ex­perienced Physician may many times be deceived, and mistake a curable disease for an incurable; wherefore Trials should be made as long as life lasts. Of Drop­sies, Cancers, Kings-evils, and the like diseases, I believe some may be cureable, especially if taken at the first beginning, and that without great difficuly, and in a short time; but such diseases, which consist in the decay of the vital parts, I do verily believe them incurable; as for example, those Dropsies, Consump­tions, dead Palsies, &c. which are caused either through the decay of the vital parts, or through want of radical substance: Neither do I think a na­tural Blindness, Dumbness, Deafness, or Lameness, curable; nor natural Fools, or Idiots: Nay, I fear, [Page 83] the best Chymist will be puzled to cure a setled or fixt Gout, or the Stone, in such bodies as are apt to breed it; for Stones are produced several ways, and as their productions are different, so are they; wherefore al­though many do pretend to great things, yet were their cures so certain, they would be more frequent. I will not say, but many times they perform great cures; but whether it be by chance, or out of a fun­damental knowledg, I know not; but since they are so seldom performed, I think them rather to be casual cures. In my opinion, the surest way, both in Dis­eases and Applications of Remedies, is, to observe the corporeal, figurative motions of both; which are best and surest perceived by the rational perception, be­cause the sensitive is more apt to be deluded.

22. Of Outward Remedies.

REmedies, which are applied outwardly, may be very beneficial; by reason the bodies of Animal Cratures are full of Pores, which serve to attract nou­rishment, or foreign matter into the body, and to vent superfluities. Besides, the interior parts of those bo­dies, to which outward Remedies are applied, may i­mitate the qualities or motions of the remedies, by the help of their own sensitive motions, and therefore the application of outward remedies is not altogether to be rejected. But yet I do not believe, that they do al­ways [Page 84] or in all persons, work the like effects; or that they are so sure and soveraign as those that are taken inwardly. The truth is, as Remedies properly and seasonably applied, can work good effects; so they may also produce ill effects, if they be used improperly and unseasonably; and therefore wise Physicians and Surgeons know by experience, as well as by learning and reason, what is best for their Patients in all kind of distempers: Onely this I will add concerning diseases, that in the productions of diseases, there must of neces­sity be a conjunction of the Agent and Patient, as is e­vident even in those diseases that are caused by conceit; for if a man should hear of an infectious disease, and be apprehensive of it; both the discourse of him that tells it, and the mind of him that apprehends it, are A­gents or causes of that disease, in the body of the Pa­tient, and concur in the production of the disease; the difference is onely, that the discourse may be called a remoter cause, and the rational motions, or the mind of the Patient, a nearer or immediate cause; for as soon as the mind doth figure such a disease, the sensitive, corporeal motions, immediately take the figure from the mind, and figure the disease in the substance or parts of the body of the Patient; the Rational proving the Fa­ther, the Sensitive the Mother; both working by con­sent. Whereby we may also conclude, that diseases, as well as other sorts of Creatures, are made by Na­tures corporeal, figurative motions; and those parts that [Page 85] occasion others to alter their natural motions, are most predominant; for although Nature is free, and all her parts self-moving; yet not every part is free to move as it pleases, by reason some parts over-power others, ei­ther through number, strength, slight, shape, oppor­tunity, or the like advantages; and natural Philosophy is the onely study that teaches men to know the parti­cular natures, figures and motions of the several com­posed parts of Nature, and the rational perception is more intelligent then the sensitive.

23. Of several sorts of Drink, and Meat.

SOme Physicians, when they discourse of several sorts of Drinks, and Meats, do relate several won­derful Cures which some Drinks have effected: And truly, I am of opinion, that they may be both bene­ficial, and hurtful, according as they are used properly, and temperately; or improperly, and excessively: but I find there are more several sorts for curiosity and luxury, then for health and necessity: Small Ale, or Beer, is a soveraign remedy to quench drought; and one Glass of Wine, proves a Cordial; but many Glasses may prove a kind of poyson, putting men oftentimes into Feavers, and the like diseases. And for Diet-drinks, I believe they are very good in some sorts of diseases; and so may Tea, and Coffee, and the water of Birches, for any thing I know, for I never had any experience [Page 86] of them; but I observe; that these latter drinks, Tea, and Coffee, are now become mode-drinks, and their chief effects are to make good fellowship, rather then to perform great cures; for I can hardly believe, that such weak liquors, can have such strong effects. Con­cerning several sorts of Meats, I leave them to experi­enced Physicians, for they know best what is fit for the bodies of their Patients; Onely, as for the preserva­tion, or keeping of several sorts of meats from putre­faction, I will say this; That I have observed, that what will keep dead Flesh, and Fish, as also Vegeta­bles, from putrefaction; will destroy living Animals; for if living Animals should, like dead flesh, be pick­led up, and kept from air, they would soon be smo­ther'd to death; and so would Fire, which yet is no A­nimal. Neither can Ladies and Gentlewomen pre­serve their lives, as they do several sorts of fruit: Ne­vertheless, both this, and several other Arts, are very necessary and profitable for the use of man, if they be but fitly and properly imployed; but we may ob­serve, that when as other Creatures have no more then what is necessary for their preservation, Man troubles himself with things that are needless; nay, many times, hurtful: Which is the cause there are so many unpro­fitable Arts, which breed confusion, instead of pro­ving beneficial and instructive.

24. Of Fermentation.

FErmentation, of which Helmont, and his follow­ers make such a stir, as 'tis enough to set all the world a fermenting or working; is nothing else, but what is vulgarly called digestion; so that it is but a new term for an old action: And these digestions or Fermentations, are as various and numerous as all o­ther actions of Nature, to wit, Respiration, Evacu­ation, Dilation, Contraction, &c. for action and working are all one.

But there are good and ill Fermentations; those are done by a sympathetical agreement of parts, but these by an antipathetical disagreement: Those tend to the preservation of the subject, these to its destruction; Those are regular, these irregular: So that there are numerous sorts of fermentations, not onely in several sorts of Creatures, but in several parts of one and the same Creature: for Fermentation or Digestion is ac­cording to the composition of the fermenting or dige­stive parts, and their motions.

25. Of the Plague.

IHave heard, that a Gentleman in Italy fancied he had so good a Microscope, that he could see Atomes through it, and could also perceive the Plague; which [Page 88] he affirmed to be a swarm of living animals, as little as Atomes, which entred into mens bodies, through their mouths, nostrils, ears, &c.

To give my opinion hereof, I must confess, That there are no parts of Nature, how little soever, which are not living and self-moving bodies; nay, every Re­spiration is of living parts; and therefore the Infection of the Plague, made by the way of respiration, cannot but be of living parts; but that these parts should be a­nimal Creatures, is very improbable to sense and rea­son; for if this were so, not onely the Plague, but all other infectious diseases would be produced the same way, and then fruit, or any other surfeiting meat, would prove living Animals: But I am so far from be­lieving, that the Plague should be living animals, as I do not believe it to be a swarm of living Atomes, fly­ing up and down in the Air; for if it were thus, then those Atomes would not remain in one place, but in­fect all the places they passed through; when as yet we observe, that the Plague will often be but in one Town or City of a Kingdom, without spreading any fur­ther. Neither do I believe (as some others say) that it is always the heat of the Sun, or Air, that causes, or at least increases the Plague; for there are Winter­plagues, as well as Summer-plagues; and many times the Plague decreases in Summer, when it is hot; and increases in Winter, when it is cold: Besides, the air being generally hot, over all the Country or King­dom, [Page 89] would not onely cause the infection in one Town or City, but in all other parts.

Therefore, my opinion is, that as all other diseases are produced several manners or ways, so likewise the Plague; and as they generally do all proceed from the irregularities of corporeal natural motions, so does also the Plague: But since it is often observed, that all bodies are not infected, even in a great Plague; it proves, that the Infection is made by imitation; and as one and the same agent cannot occasion the like effects in every Patient; as for example, Fire in several sorts of Fuels; nay, in one and the same sort; as for example, in Wood; for some wood takes sooner fire, and burns more clearly, and dissolves more sud­denly then some other; so it is also with the Plague, and with all other diseases, that proceed from an out­ward Infection; for the exterior agent is not an imme­diate cause, but onely an occasion that the Patient has such or such motions; and as the imitating motions are stronger or weaker, quicker or flower; so is the breed­ing of the disease. I will not deny, but there may be such figurative, corporeal motions in the Air or Earth, which may cause infections amongst those animals that live within the compass thereof, and many times the Air or Earth may be infected by Animals; But some particulars not being infected at all, though they be frequently with those that have the Plague; it proves, that the figurative motions of their bodies do not imi­tate [Page 90] those motions that make the Plague; when as, if the Air were filled with infectious Atomes, none would escape; nay, they would not onely enter into Men, but Beasts and Birds, &c.

Concerning the Spotted-Plague, it proceeds from a general irregularity of dissolving motions, which cause a general Gangrene of all the body; and to find a cure for this disease, is as difficult, as to find the Philosophers-stone; for though many pretend to cure it, yet none has as yet performed it; what may be done hereafter I know not; but I doubt they will be more able to raise a man from the dead, or renew old age, and change it into youth, then do it.

As for other Diseases, I refer the Reader to my o­ther Works, especially my Philosophical Opinions; for my design is not now to make a Physical Treatise; and there they will find of the disease called Ague, that its cause is the irregularity of the digestive or conco­ctive motions, and so of the rest: for in this present work I intended nothing else, but to make reflections upon Experimental Philosophy, and to explain some other Points in Natural Philosophy, for the better un­derstanding of my own Opinions, which if I have done to the satisfaction of the Reader, I have my aim, and desire no more.

26. Of Respiration.

HAving made mention both in the foregoing dis­course, and several other places of this Book, of Respiration; I'le add to the end of this part a full de­claration of my opinion thereof.

First, I believe that there are Respirations in all Crea­tures and Parts of Nature, performed by the several pas­sages of their bodies, to receive forreign, and discharge some of their own parts. Next, I believe, That those Respirations are of different sorts, according to the different sorts of Creatures. Thirdly, As the Respi­rations of natural Parts and Creatures are various and different, so are also the pores or passages through which they respire; as for example, in Man, and some other animals, the Nostrils, Ears, Mouth, Pores of the skin, are all of different figures: And such a difference may also be between the smaller pores of the skin, of the several parts of man, as between the pores of his breast, arms, legs, head, &c. also the grain or lines of a man's skin may be different, like as several figures of wrought Silks or Stuffs sold in Mercers shops; which if they did make several colours by the various refractions, inflections, reflections and positi­ons of light, then certainly a naked man would appear of many several colours, according to the difference of [Page 92] his pores or grains of the skin, and the different posi­tion of light. But sense and reason does plainly ob­serve, that the positions of light do not cause such ef­fects; for though every several man, for the most part, hath a peculiar complexion, feature, shape, hu­mor, disoposition, &c. different from each other, so that it is a miracle to see two men just alike one another in all things; yet light alters not the natural colour of their bodies, no more then it can alter the natural fi­gures and shapes of all other parts of their bodies; but what alteration soever is made, proceeds from the na­tural corporeal motions of the same body, and not from the various positions, refractions and reflections of light; whose variety in Nature, as it is infinite, so it produces also infinite figures, according to the infinite Wisdom of Nature, which orders all things orderly and wisely.

OBSERVATIONS UPON THE OPINIONS OF SOME Ancient Philosophers.

ALthough the indisposition of my bo­dy did in a manner disswade me from studying and writing any more; yet the great desire I had to know the Opinions of the An­cient Philosophers, and whether any came near my own, overcame me so much, that even to the prejudice of my own health, I gave my self to the perusing of the works of that learned Author Mr. Stanly, wherein he describes the lives and opini­ons of the ancient Philosophers; in which I found so much difference betwixt their conceptions and my own in Natural Philosophy, that were it allowable or usual [Page 2] for our sex, I might set up a sector School for my self, without any prejudice to them; But I, being a wo­man, do fear they would soon cast me out of their Schools; for though the Muses, Graces and Sciences are all of the female gender, yet they were more esteem­ed in former ages, then they are now; nay, could it be done handsomely, they would now turn them all from Females into Males; so great is grown the self­conceit of the Masculine, and the disregard of the Fe­male sex.

But to let that pass: The Opinions of the Ancient, though they are not exempt from errors no more then our Moderns, yet are they to be commended that their conceptions are their own, and the issue of their own wit and reason; when as most of the opinions of our Mo­dern Philosophers, are patched up with theirs: Some whereof do altogether follow either Aristotle, Plato, Epicurus, Pythagoras, &c. others make a mixture of se­veral of their Opinions, and others again take some of their opinions, and dress them up new with some ad­ditions of their own; and what is worst, after all this, instead of thanks, they reward them with scorn, and rail at them; when as, perhaps, without their pains and industry, our age would hardly have arrived to that knowledg it has done. To which ungrateful and unconscionable act, I can no ways give my consent, but admire and honour both the ancient, and all those that are real Inventors of noble and profitable Arts and [Page 3] Sciences, before all those that are but botchers and bro­kers; and that I do in this following part, examine, and mark some of their opinions, as erroneous; is not out of a humor to revile or prejudice their wit, industry, ingenuity and learning, in the least; but onely to shew, by the difference of their opinions and mine, that mine are not borrowed from theirs, as also to make mine the more intelligible and clear, and, if possible, to find out the truth in Natural Philosophy; for which were they alive, I question not, but I should easily ob­tain their pardon.

1. Vpon the Principles of Thales.

THales, according to Historical Relation, was the first that made disquisitions upon Nature, and so the first Natural Philosoper. His chief points in Phi­losophy are these: 1. He says, That Water is the Principle of all natural bodies: 2. That Nature is full of Daemons, and spiritual substances: 3. That the Soul is a self-moving Nature, and that it both moves it self, and the body: 4. That there is but one World, and that finite: 5. That the World is animate, and God is the soul thereof, diffused through every Part: 6. That the World is contained in a place: 7. That Bodies are divisible into infinite.

Concerning the First, viz. That Water is the Principle of all natural things; Helmont doth embrace [Page 4] this opinion, as I have declared in my Philosophical Letters, and in the foregoing part of this Book, and have given withal my reasons why water cannot be a principle of natural things, because it is no more but a natural effect; for though humidity may be found in many parts or Creatures of Nature, yet this doth not prove, that water is a principle of all natural bodies, no more then fire, earth, air, or any other Creature of Nature; and though most Philosophers are of opi­nion, that Elements are simple bodies, and all the rest are composed of them, yet this is no ways probable to reason, because they consist of the same matter as other bodies do, and are all but effects of one cause or prin­ciple, which is infinite Matter.

Next, That Nature is full of Daemons, or Spiri­tual substances, is against sense and reason; for what is incorporeal, is no part of Nature, and upon this ac­count, the soul cannot be immaterial, although he makes her to be a self-moving Nature; for what has a natural motion, has also a natural body; because Matter and Motion are but one thing; neither can a Spiritual substance move a corporeal, they being both of different natures.

As for the World, That there is but one, I do wil­lingly grant it, if by the World he did mean Nature; but then it cannot be finite. But Thales seems to con­tradict himself in this Theoreme, when as he grants, that Bodies are divisible in infinite; for if there be [Page 5] infinite actions, as infinite divisions in Nature; then surely the body of Nature it self must be infinite.

Next, he says, That God is the Soul of the World; which if so, God being Infinite, he cannot have a Finite body to animate it; for a Finite Body, and an Infinite Soul, do never agree together; but that God should be the Soul of the World, no regular Reason can allow, because the Soul of Nature must be cor­poreal, as well as the Body; for an incorporeal sub­stance cannot be mixed with a corporeal. Next, the World as the body of Nature, being dividable, it would follow, that God, which is the Soul, would be dividable also: Thirdly, Every part of the world, would be a part of God, as partaking of the same nature; for every part, if the Soul be diffused through all the Body, would be animate.

Lastly, Concerning Place, as that the World is contained in a place; my opinion is, that place is no­thing else, but an affection of body, and in no ways different or separable from it; for wheresoever is body; or matter, there is place also; so that place cannot be said to contain the world, or else it would be bigger then the world it self; for that which contains, must needs in compass or extent, exceed that which it con­tains.

2. Some few Observations on Plato's Doctrine.

1. PLato says, That Life is two fold, Contemplative, and Active; and that Contemplation is an office of the Intellect, but Action an operation of the Rati­onal soul?

To which I answer, first, That I know no other difference between Intellect and Reason, but that In­tellect is an effect, or rather an Essential Propriety of Reason, if Reason be the Principle of Nature; for the Rational part is the most Intelligent part of animate Matter. Next, I say, That Contemplation is as much an action, as any other action of Nature, al­though it be not so gross as the action of the body; for it is onely an action of the mind, which is more pure and subtile then either the sensitive or inanimate parts of matter are, and acts within it self, that is, in its own substance or degree of Matter.

2. He says, That Sense is a passion of the Soul.

I answer: There is as much difference between Sense, and the Soul, as there is between Sense, and Rea­son, or a sensitive life, and a rational soul; for the Rational parts of Matter, are not the Sensitive, nor the Sensitive the Rational; a Fool may have his sense regular, and his reason irregular; and therefore sense and reason are not one and the same, although they have [Page 7] an inseparable Communion in the body or substance of Nature.

3. He argues thus: That which moves in it self, as being the principle of Motion in those things which are moved, is always moved, and consequently Im­mortal, Ungenerable and Incorruptible; but the Soul is so. Ergo, &c.

I answer: Natural Matter being thus self-moving, is the same.

4. From, says he, is joined to Matter.

I answer: Form and Matter are but one thing; for it is impossible to separate Matter from Form, or Form from Matter; but what is not dividable, is not com­posable; and what cannot be separated, cannot be joined

5. Qualities, says he, are incorporeal, because they are accidents.

I answer: If Qualities be Incorporeal, they do not belong to Nature; for since the Principle of Nature is Matter, all that is natural, must also be material or cor­poreal; and therefore all natural qualities or accidents must of necessity be corporeal, by reason quality can no more be divided from Matter, then figure, magni­tude, colour, place, and the like; all which are but one and the same with body, without any separation or abstraction.

6. What Plato affirms, of that which never is, and never had a Beginning, and of that which has a Be­ginning, [Page 8] and not a Being, is more then he or any body can rationally prove; for what never was, nor is, no man can know or imagine; because all what is known or imagined, has its real being, if not without, yet within the Mind; and all thoughts have not onely a being, but a material being in Nature; nay, even the Thought of the existence of a Deity, although Deity it self is Immaterial.

7. I wonder so witty a Philosopher as Plato can be­lieve, that Matter in it self, as it is the Principle of Nature, is void of all form; for he affirms himself, That whatsoever hath parts, hath also figure; but Mat­ter has parts, (by reason there can be no single part in Nature, but wheresoever is body or matter, there are parts also) and therefore matter cannot be void of fi­gure. But if by Form, he mean the innate and inhe­rent self-motion of Matter, he contradicts himself; for how can all things be made of matter, as their principle, if matter be destitute of self-motion? Wherefore In­finite Matter has not onely self-motion, but also figure, though not a circumscribed or limited figure: Nei­ther can it be proved, that Nature, being infinite, is not qualitative, no more then she can be proved to have no parts, or to be finite. In short, it is impos­sible for my reason to believe, that Matter should be capable of, and subject to all forms, and yet be void of all quality, form, and species; for whatsoever has neither form, figure, nor quality, is no body, and [Page 9] therefore Plato's Matter is immaterial, or incorporeal. If it were possible, that there could be some converse or meeting between his and my soul, I would ask his soul how he would prove, that one and the same thing could exist, and not exist at one and the same time; that is, how matter could be no matter, or something and no­thing at the same time; and whence it came to be thus? For though our reason does believe, that the Omni­potent Creator can make something of nothing, and reduce something into nothing; yet no reason is able to comprehend how God could make a being which is neither something, nor nothing; neither corporeal, nor incorporeal. But Plato concludes that Matter is de­stitute of all form, because it is subject to change of forms and figures in its particulars, which is a very great mistake; for the changes of forms or figures, do not alter the nature of Matter; but prove rather, that wheresoever there is form or figure, there is matter also; so that none can be without the other at no time; A piece of Wax may be transformed into millions of figures, but it can never be deprived of all figure; no more can Matter.

8. Concerning Ideas, Plato's Opinion is, That they are Principles of Nature, and the Eternal Notions of God, perfect in themselves; or an External exem­plar of things which are according to Nature. But I would ask him, what Notions are, and whence they come; and, if they be pictures or patterns of all things in [Page 10] Nature, What makes or causes them? He will say, They are the Thoughts of God. But what Crea­ture in the Universe is able to describe the Thoughts or Notions of God? For though I do humbly ac­knowledg God to be the Author of Nature; and with the greatest reverence and fear, adore that Infinite Deity; yet I dare not attribute any Notions or Ideas to God, nor in any manner or way express him like our humane condition; for I fear I should speak irre­verently of that Incomprehensible Essence, which is above all finite Capacity, Reason, or Idea.

Next, he says, That those Ideas are not of things made by Art, nor of singulars, nor of preternatural accidents, as diseases, nor of vile and abject things, nor of Relatives. Which if so, I would enquire whence those effects do proceed? for if the Eternal Ideas, ac­cording to his opinion, are Principles of all natural things, they must also be principles of the aforemen­tioned effects, they being also natural: If they do not proceed from any principle, they must proceed from themselves; which cannot be, by reason they are ef­fects of Nature: but if they have another principle besides the Eternal Notions, or Ideas; then there must be another power besides these, which power would oppose the divine power, or the power God has en­dued Nature withal. In short, If the Ideas of God be the Principle of Nature, they must be a principle of all natural things; for that which is not Universal, can [Page 11] never be a principle: which if so, then the Ideas or Notions of God, would not onely be the Cause and Principle of all Goodness, but of all evil effects; and if there be more wicked or evil souls in the World then good ones, there would proceed more evil from God then good; which is not onely impossible, but impi­ous to affirm. But Perchance he will say, That the Ideas of the aforementioned effects are generated and annihilated. I answer: As for Nature, she be­ing Eternal and Infinite, is not subject to new generati­ons and annihilations in her particulars; neither can Principles be generated and annihilated; and as for su­pernatural or immaterial Ideas, they being incorporeal, cannot be subject to a new generation, or annihilation; for what is supernatural, is not capable of natural affe­ctions, nor subject to a natural capacity any ways. In truth, Plato, with his Ideas in God, in the Angelick Mind, in the Soul, &c. makes a greater stir then needs, and breeds more confusion in Nature then she really knows of; for Nature is as easie to be understood in her general principles, that regular sense and reason may conceive them without framing any such Ideas or Minds. He distinguishes also the Idea or exemplar of an house which the architect has in his mind; and as his pattern exactly strives to imitate, from the build­ing or structure of the house it self by this, that he calls that intelligible, but this material and sensible; when as yet the form or pattern in the Architects mind, is as [Page 12] much material, as the builded house it self; the onely difference is, that the Exemplar, or figure in the Mind, is formed of the rational matter onely, which is the pu­rest, finest and subtilest degree, and the other is made of grosser materials.

9. The Soul of the World he makes immaterial, but the body material; and hence he concludes the World to be Eternal; because the soul is such which is not capable to be without body; and although it be incorporeal, yet its office is to rule and govern corpo­real Nature. But concerning the Soul of Nature, I have sufficiently declared my opinion thereof in other places; to wit, that it is impossible she should be im­material; for if the body of Nature be dividable and composable, the soul must be so too; but that which is not material, cannot admit of division, nor compo­sition; wherefore the soul cannot be immaterial, or else some parts of the world would be destitute of a soul, which might deserve it as well as the rest, which would argue a partiality in the Creator. I wonder wise men will attribute bodily affections to immaterial beings, when as yet they are not able to conceive or comprehend them; by which they confound and di­sturb Nature, which knows of no Immaterials, but her Essence is Matter.

10. As for his Ethicks, where he speaks of Beauty, Strength, Proportion, &c. I'le onely say this, That of all these, there are different sorts; for there's the [Page 13] strength of the Mind, and the strength of the Body; and these are so various in their kinds and particulars, that they cannot be exactly defined; also Beauty, consi­dering onely that which is of the body, there are so many several sorts, consisting in features, shapes and proportions of bodies, as it is impossible to describe pro­perly what Beauty is, and wherein it really consists; for what appears beautiful to some, may seem ill-fa­voured to others; and what seems extraordinary fair or handsom to one, may have but an indifferent cha­racter of another; so that in my opinion, there's no such thing as a Universal Beauty, which may gain a general applause of all, and be judged alike by every one that views it; nay, not by all immortal souls, nei­ther in body, nor mind; for what one likes, another may dislike; what one loves, another may hate; what one counts good, another may proclaim bad; what one names just, another may call unjust: And as for Temperance which he joins to Justice; what may be temperance to one, may be intemperance to another; for no particular knows the just measures of Nature; nay, even one and the same thing which one man loves to day, he may chance to hate, or at least dislike, to mor­row; for Nature is too various to be constant in her particulars, by reason of the perpetual alterations and changes they are subject to; which do all proceed from self-moving Matter, and not from incorporeal Ideas. Thus Rational souls are changeable, which may be [Page 14] proved by the changes of their Fancies, Imaginations, Thoughts, Judgments, Understandings, Concep­tions, Passions, Affections, and the like; all which are effects or actions of the rational soul; nay, not onely natural rational souls, but even divine souls, if they were all good, none would be bad, nor vary as we find they do; and therefore I cannot believe that all souls can have the same likeness, being so different amongst themselves.

3. Upon the Doctrine of Pythagoras.

1. THe most Learned of the Pythagoreans do as­sert, That things apparent to sense, cannot be said Principles of the Universe; for whatsoever consists of things apparent to sense, is compounded of things not apparent; and a Principle must not consist of any thing, but be that of which the thing con­sists.

To which I answer: First, I cannot conceive what they mean by things apparent to sense; if they mean the sensitive organs of humane Creatures, they are mistaken; for there may be, and are really many things in Nature, which are not apparent to humane sense, and yet are not Principles, but natural effects; wherefore not all things that are not apparent to hu­mane sense, are principles of Nature: Besides, there may be many other Creatures which do far exceed [Page 15] Men or Animals in their sensitive perceptions; and if things be not subject to humane sense, they may be sub­ject to the sense of other Creatures. But if by sense they mean the sensitive life of Nature, they commit a far greater error; for there's nothing which is not subject, or has a participation of this Universal sense in Nature, as well as of Reason. 'Tis true, particular senses can­not perceive the infinite figurative motions of Nature, neither can the subtilest sense have a perception of the interior, innate, figurative motions of any other Crea­ture; but I do not speak of particular senses, but of that infinite sense and reason, which is self-moving Matter, and produces all the effects of Nature.

But you'l say, How can Infinite be a principle of particular Finites?

I answer: As well as the Infinite God can be the Author of Nature, and all natural Beings; which though they be finite in their particular figures, yet their number is Infinite.

2. Concerning the Numbers of Pythagoras, which he makes so great a value of; I confess, wheresoever are Parts, and compositions, and divisions of parts, there must also be number, but yet as parts cannot be prin­ciples, so neither can numbers; for self-moving Mat­ter, which is the onely principle of Nature, is infinite, and there are no more principles but this one. 'Tis true, regular compositions and divisions are made by consent of parts, and presuppose number and har­mony, [Page 16] but number and harmony cannot be the cause of any orderly productions, without sense and reason; for how should parts agree in their actions, if they did not know each other, or if they had no sense nor rea­son? truly there can be no motion without sense, nor no orderly motion without reason; and though Epi­curus's Atomes might move by chance without reason, yet they could not move in a concord or harmony, not knowing what they are to do, or why, or whither they move; nay, if they had no sense, it is impossible they should have motion; and therefore, in my opinion, it is the rational and sensitive parts which by consent make number and harmony; and those that will deny this sensitive and rational self-moving Matter, must deny the principles of motion, and of all constant successions of all sorts and kinds of Creatures, nay, of all the va­riety that is in Nature. Indeed I am puzled to under­stand Learned men, what they mean by Principles, by reason I see that they so frequently call Principles those which are but effects of Nature; some count the Ele­ments Principles; some Numbers; some Ideas; some Atomes; and the like: And by their different opini­ons, they confirm, that there is as well discord and di­vision, as there is concord and composition of the parts of Nature; for if this were not, there would be no contrary actions, and consequently no variety of figures and motions.

[Page 17] 3. Whatsoever is comprehended by man, says Py­thagoras, is either body, or incorporeal; amongst which Incorporeals he reckons also time: But this opi­nion is contradicted by regular sense and reason; for no humane, nor any other natural Creature, is able to comprehend an incorporeal, it self being corporeal; and as for time, place, and the like, they are one and the same with body, which is so, how can they be incor­poreal? Neither is it possible, that incorporeal Be­ings, should be principles of Nature, because there is as much difference between corporeal, and incorporeal, as there is between Matter, and no Matter; but how no Matter can be a principle of matterial effects, is not conceivable. For God, though he be an Immaterial Essence, and yet the Author of material Nature, and all natural Beings; yet he is not a natural, material Principle, out of which all natural things consist, and are framed, but a supernatural, decreeing, or­dering and commanding Principle, which cannot be said of created Incorporeals; for though Nature moves by the powerful Decree of God, yet she can­not be governed by finite Incorporeals; by reason they being finite, have no power over a material Infi­nite, neither can there be any other Infinite Spirit, but God himself.

4. Pythagoras's Doctrine is, That the World, in its nature, is Corruptible, but the Soul of the World is Incorruptible; and that without the Heavens, there [Page 18] is an Infinite Vacuum, into which, and out of which the World repairs. As for the corruptibility of the World, I cannot understand how the Soul can be incorrup­tible, and the World it self corruptible; for if the World should be destroyed, what will become of the Soul? I will not say, That the All-powerfull God may not destroy it when he pleases, but the infiniteness and perpetual self-motion of Nature, will not permit that Nature should be corruptible in it self; for God's Power goes beyond the power of Nature. But it seems Pythagoras understands by the World, no more then his senses can reach; so that beyond the Celestial Orbs he supposes to be an infinite Vacuum; which is as much as to say, an infinite Nothing; and my reason cannot apprehend how the World can breath and re­spire into nothing, and out of nothing.

5. Neither am I able to conceive the Truth of his assertion, That all lines are derived from points, and all numbers from unity, and all figures from a circle; for there can be no such thing as a single point, a single unity, a single circle in Nature, by reason Nature is infinitely dividable and composable; neither can they be principles, because they are all but effects.

6. Concerning the Soul, the Pythagoreans call her a self-moving number, and divide her into two parts, rational and irrational, and derive the beginning of the soul from the heat of the brain.

The Sould of Animate Creatures, as they call them, [Page] they allow to be rational, even those which others call irrational, to wit, those in all other animals besides man; but they act not according to reason, for want of speech. The Rational Soul, say they, is immortal, and a self-moving number; where by number, they understand the Mind, which they call a Monad. These, and the like opinions, which Pythagoreans have of the Soul, are able to puzle Solomons wit or understand­ing to make any conformity of Truth of them; and I will not strictly examine them, but set down these few Paradoxes.

1. I cannot apprehend, how the same soul can be divided into substances of such differing, nay, contrary proprieties and natures, as to be rational and irrational, mortal and immortal.

2. How the heat of the brain can be the Principle of the soul; since the soul is said to actuate, move, and inform the body, and to be a Principle of all bodily acti­ons: Besides, all brains have not the like Tempera­ment, but some are hot, and some cold, and some hot­ter then others; whence it will follow, that all animals are not endued with the like souls; but some souls must of necessity be weaker, and some stronger then o­thers.

3. How Irrational Creatures can have a Rational Soul, and yet not act according to Reason for want of speech: for Irrational Creatures are called so, because they are thought to have no reason; and as for speech, [Page 20] it is an effect, and not a Principle of Reason; for shall we think a dumb man irrational, because he cannot speak?

4. I cannot conceive how it is possible, that the soul is a self-moving number, and yet but a Monad, or Unite; for a Unite, they say, is no number, but a prin­ciple of number: Not, how the Soul, being incorpo­real, can walk in the air, like a body; for incorporeal beings cannot have corporeal actions, no more then corporeal beings can have the actions of incorporeals. Wherefore I will leave those points to the examina­tion of more Learned Persons, then my self; and as for the Pythagorean Transmigration of Souls, I have declared my opinion thereof heretofore, in the first part.

4. Of Epicurus his Principles of Philosophy.

1. COncerning the World, Epicurus is of opinion, That it is not Eternal and Incorruptible; but that it was generated, and had a beginning, and shall also have an end, and perish: For, says he, It is necessary that all compounded things be also dissipated, and resolved into those things of which they were com­pounded. By the World, he understands a portion of the universe; that is, the circumference of Heaven, containing the Stars, the Earth, and all things visible; For Heaven he supposes to be the extreme, or outmost [Page 21] part of the World; and by the Universe, he under­stands Infinite Nature, which consists of Body, and Vacuum; for he thinks bodies could not move, were there no Vacuum to move in.

Whereof I do briefly declare my opinion, thus: If the Universe or Nature it self be Infinite, Eternal and Incorruptible, all parts of Nature, or the Universe, must be so too; I mean, in themselves, as they are Matter, or Body; for were it possible, that some of them could perish, or be annihilated; the Universe would be imperfect, and consequently not infinite, as wanting some parts of its own body. 'Tis true, par­ticular natural figures may be infinitely changed, dis­solved, transformed; but they can never be dissolved from being Matter, or parts of Nature; and if not, they cannot perish, no not the figures of finite parts, for as Matter cannot perish, so neither can figure, be­cause matter and figure are but onething; and though one part be transformed into millions of figures, yet all those figures do not perish in their changes and altera­tions, but continue still in Nature, as being parts of Nature, and therefore material. Thus, change, al­teration, dissolution, division, composition, and all other species of motions, are no annihilation, or pe­rishing; neither can it be proved, that parts dissolve more then they unite; because dissolution, or divi­sion and composition of parts, are but one act; for whensoever parts separate themselves from some, they [Page 22] must of necessity join to others; which doth also prove, that there can be no Vacuum in Nature; for if there were, there would be division without composition: besides, there would be no parts, but all parts would be several wholes, by reason they would subsist by themselves. Thus Nature would not be one infinite body, com­posed of Infinite parts; but every part being a whole by it self, would make some kind of a finite world; and those parts which separate themselves from each other by the intervals of Vacuum, would subsist precised from each other, as having no relation to one another, and so become wholes of parts; nay, if several of those in­tire and single bodies should join closely together, they would make such a gap of Vacuum, as would cause a confusion and disturbance both amongst themselves, and in the Universe. Wherefore sense and reason contradicts the opinion of Vacuum; neither is there any necessity of introducing it, by reason of the motion of natural bodies; for they may move without Vacuum better then within Vacuum, since all bodies are not of the like Nature, that is, dense, close, or compact; but there are fluid bodies, as well as hard bodies; rare, as well as dense; subtile, as well as gross; because there is animate and inanimate matter in Nature. But con­cerning the World, it seems, Epicurus doth not mean by the dissolution of the world, an absolute annihila­tion, but onely a reduction into its former principles, which are Atomes; however, if this be his meaning, [Page 23] he contradicts himself, when he affirms, that the uni­verse, whose portion the World is, was ever such as it is now, and shall ever be thus; for if it shall continue so for ever as it is now, how is it possible, that it should be reduced into Atomes. He says also, That the Vni­niverse is immovable and immutable. If he mean it to be so in its Essence or Nature, so that it cannot be changed from being material; and that it is immovable, so that it cannot be moved, beyond, or without it self; I am of his opinion: For Nature being purely and wholly ma­terial, cannot be made immaterial, without its total destruction; and being infinite, has nothing without it self to move into: Otherwise, Nature is not onely a self-moving body, but also full of changes and varie­ties; I mean, within her self, and her particulars. As for his infinite Worlds, I am not different from his o­pinion, if by Worlds he mean the parts of infinite Na­ture; but my Reason will not allow, that those infi­nite Worlds do subsist by themselves, distinguished from each other by Vacuum; for it is meer non-sense to say, the Universe consists of body and Vacuum; that is, of something, and nothing; for nothing cannot be a constitutive principle of any thing, neither can it be measured, or have corporeal dimensions; for what is no body, can have no bodily affections or properties. God, by his Omnipotency, may reduce the World into nothing; but this cannot be comprehended by na­tural reason.

[Page 24] 2. The Matter or Principle of all natural Beings, Epicurus makes Atomes: For, say he, There are Simple, and Compounded bodies in the Universe; the Simple bodies are the first matter, out of which the Com­pounded bodies consist, and those are Atomes; that is, bo­dies indivisible, immutable, and in themselves void of all mutation; consisting of several infinite figures; some big­ger, and some less. Which opinion appears very Para­doxical to my reason; for if Atomes be bodies, I do not see how they can be indivisible, by reason where­soever is body, there are also parts; so that divisibi­lity is an essential propriety or attribute of Matter or Body. He counts it impossible, that one finite part should be capable of infinite divisions; but his Vacuum makes him believe there are single finite parts, distin­guished from each other by little spaces or intervals of vacuity, which in truth cannot be; but as soon as parts are divided from such or such parts, they immediately join to other parts; for division and composition, as I mentioned before, are done by one act; and one countervails the other. 'Tis true, there are distin­ctions of parts in Nature, or else there would be no variety; but these are not made by little intervals of vacuity, but by their own figures, interior as well as exterior, caused by self-motion, which make a diffe­rence between the infinite parts of Nature. But put the case there were such Atomes, out of which all things are made; yet no man that has his sense and reason [Page 25] regular, can believe, they did move by chance, or at least without sense and reason, in the framing of the world, and all natural bodies, if he do but consider the wonderful order and harmony that is in Nature, and all her parts. Indeed I admire so witty and great a Phi­losopher as Epicurus, should be of such an extravagant opinion, as to divide composed bodies into animate and inanimate, and derive them all from one Principle, which are senseless and irrational Atomes; for if his A­tomes, out of which all things consist, be self-moving, or have, as he says, some natural impulse within them­selves, then certainly all bodies that are composed of them, must be the same. He places the diversity of them onely in figure, weight and magnitude, but not in motion, which he equally allows to all; nay, more­over, he says, that although they be of different fi­fiures, weight and magnitude, yet they do all move equally swift; but if they have motion, they must of necessity have also sense, that is, life and knowledg; there being no such thing as a motion by chance in Na­ture, because Nature is full of reason as well as of sense, and wheresoevever is reason, there can be no chance; Chance is onely in respect to particulars, caused by their ignorance; for particulars being finite in them­selves, can have no Infinite or Universal knowledg; and where there is no Universal knowledg, there must of necessity be some ignorance. Thus ignorance, which proceeds from the division of parts, causes that which we [Page 26] call chance; but Nature, being an infinite self-moving body, has also infinite knowledg; and therefore she knows of no chance, nor is this visible World, or any part of her, made by chance, or a casual concourse of senseless and irrational Atomes; but by the All-pow­erful Decree and Command of God, out of that pre­existent Matter that was from all Eternity, which is in­finite Nature; for though the Scripture expresses the framing of this World, yet it doth not say, that Na­ture her self was then created; but onely that this world was put into such a frame and state, as it is now; and who knows but there may have been many other Worlds before, and of another figure then this is: nay, if Nature be infinite, there must also be infinite Worlds; for I take, with Epicurus, this World but for a part of the Universe; and as there is self-motion in Nature, so there are also perpetual changes of particulars, although God himself be immovable; for God acts by his All­powerful Decree or Command, and not after a na­tural way.

3. The Soul of Animals, says Epicurus, is corpo­real, and a most tenuious and subtile body, made up of most subtile particles, in figure, smooth and round, not perceptible by any sense; and this subtile contexture of the soul, is mixed and compounded of four several natures; as of something fiery, something aerial, some­thing flatuous, and something that has no name; by means whereof it is indued with a sensitive faculty. And [Page 27] as for reason, that is likewise compounded or little bo­dies, but the smoothest and roundest of all, and of the quickest motion. Thus he discourses of the Soul, which, I confess, surpasses my understanding; for I shall never be able to conceive, how senseless and irra­tional Atomes can produce sense and reason, or a sen­sible and rational body, such as the soul is, although he affirms it to be possible: 'Tis true, different effects may proceed from one cause or principle; but there is no principle, which is senseless, can produce sensitive effects; nor no rational effects can flow from an irra­tional cause; neither can order, method and harmo­ny proceed from chance or confusion; and I cannot conceive, how Atomes, moving by chance, should onely make souls in animals, and not in other bodies; for if they move by chance, and not by knowledg and consent, they might, by their conjunction, as well chance to make souls in Vegetables and Minerals, as in Animals.

4. Concerning Perception, and in particular, the Perception of sight, Epicurus affirms, that it is per­formed by the gliding of some images of external ob­jects into our eyes, to wit, that there are certain effluxi­ons of Atomes sent out from the surfaces of bodies, preserving the same position and order, as is found in the superficies of them, resembling them in all their li­neaments; and those he calls Images, which are per­petually flowing in an interrupted course; and when [Page 28] one Image goes away, another immediately succeeds from the superficies of the object in a continued stream; and this entering into our eyes, and striking our sight, with a very swift motion, causes the Perception of seeing.

This strange opinion of his, is no less to be admired then the rest, and shews, that Epicurus was more blind in his reason, then perhaps in his Eye-sight: For, first, How can there be such a perpetual effluxion of Atomes, from an external body, without lessening or weakning its bulk or substance, especially they being corporeal? Indeed, if a million of eyes or more, should look for a long time upon one object, it is impossible, but that object would be sensibly lessened or diminished, at least weakned, by the perpetual effluxions of so many millions of Atomes: Next, how is it possible, that the Eye can receive such an impress of so many Atomes, without hurting or offending it in the least? Thirdly, Since Epicurus makes Vacuities in Nature, How can the images pass so orderly through all those Vacuities, especially if the object be of a considerable magnitude? for then all intermediate bodies that are between the sentient, and the sensible object, must re­move, and make room for so many images to pass thorow. Fourthly, How is it possible, that, espe­cially at a great distance, in an instant of time, and as soon as I cast my eye upon the object, so many A­tomes can effluviate with such a swiftness, as to enter [Page 29] so suddenly through the Air into the Eye; for all mo­tion is progressive, and done in time? Fifthly, I would fain know, when those Atomes are issued from the object, and entered into the eye, what doth at last become of them? Surely they cannot remain in the Eye, or else the Eye would never lose the sight of the object; and if they do not remain in the Eye, they must either return to the object from whence they came, or join with other bodies, or be annihilated. Sixtly, I cannot imagine, but that, when we see several objects at one and the same time, those images proceeding from so many several objects, be they never so orderly in their motions, will make a horrid confusion; so that the eye will rather be confounded, then perceive any thing exactly after this manner. Lastly, A man having two eyes; I desire to know, Whether every eye has its own image to perceive, or whether but one image enters into both; if every eye receives its own image, then a man having two eyes, may see double; and a great Drone-flie, which Experimental Philoso­phers report to have 14000 eyes, may receive so many images of one object; but if but one image enters into all those eyes, then the image must be divided into so many parts.

5. What Epicurus means by his divine Nature, cannot be understood by a natural capacity; for, he says it is the same with corporeal Nature; but yet not so much a body, as a certain thing like a body, as [Page 30] having nothing common to it with other bodies, that is, with transitory, generated, and perishable things. But, in my opinion, God must either be Corporeal, or Incorporeal; if Corporeal, he must be Nature it self; for there's nothing corporeal, but what is natural; if incorporeal, he must be supernatural; for there is nothing between body, and no body; corporeal and incorporeal; natural, and supernatural; and therefore to say, God is of a corporeal nature, and yet not a body, but like a body, is contrary to all sense and reason. 'Tis true, God hath actions, but they are not corporeal, but supernatural, and not comprehensible by a humane or finite capacity: Neither is God naturally moving, for he has no local or natural motion, nor doth he trouble himself with making any thing, but by his All-power­full Decree and Command he produces all things; and Nature, which is his Eternal servant, obeys his Com­mands: Wherefore the actions of Nature cannot be a disturbance to his Incomprehensible felicity, no not to Nature, which being self-moving, can do no other­wise, but take delight in acting, for her actions are free and easie, and not forced or constrained.

6. Although he affirms, That God, or Nature, considers Man no more then other Creatures; yet he endeavours to prove, That Man is the best product of his Atomes; which to me seems strange, considering that all compositions of Atomes come by chance, and that the Principles of all Creatures are alike. But [Page 31] truly, take away the supernatural or divine soul from man, and he is no better then other Creatures are, be­cause they are all composed of the same matter, and have all sense and reason, which produces all sorts of figures, in such order, method and harmony, as the wisdom of Nature requires, or as God has ordered it; for Nature, although she be Infinite and Eter­nal, yet she depends upon the Incomprehensible God, the Author of Nature, and his All-powerfull Commands, Worshipping and Adoring him in her infinite particulars; for God being Infinite, must also have an infinite Worship; and if Nature had no dependance on God, she would not be a servant, but God her self. Wherefore Epicurus his Atomes, having no dependance upon a divine power, must of necessity be Gods; nay, every Atome must be a peculiar God, each being a single body, subsisting by it self; but they being senseless and irrational, would prove but weak Gods: Besides his Chance is but an uncertain God, and his Vacuum an empty God; and if all natural effects were grounded up­on such principles, Nature would rather be a con­fused Chaos, then an orderly and harmonical Uni­verse.

5. On Aristotle's Philosophical Principles.

HAving viewed four of the most Eminent of the Ancient Philosophers, I will proceed now to Aristotle, who may justly be called the Idol of the Schools, for his doctrine is generally embraced with such reverence, as if Truth it self had declared it; but I find he is no less exempt from errors, then all the rest, though more happy in fame. For Fame doth all, and whose name she is pleased to record, that man shall live, when others, though of no less worth and merit, will be obscured, and buried in oblivion. I shall not give my self the trouble of examining all his Principles; but as I have done by the former, make my observations on some few points in his Philosophy.

1. The summe of his Doctrine concerning Motion, and the first Mover, is comprehended in these few The­orems. 1. There are three sorts of motion, Accretion and Diminution, Alteration and Local motion. 2. Rest is a privation of Motion. 3. All Motion is finite, for it is done in Time, which is finite. 4. There is no infinite Quantity or Magnitude in act, but onely in power, and so no body can be actually infinite. 5. Whatsoever is moved, must necessarily be moved by another. 6. There is a first mover in Nature, which is the cause and origine of all motions. 7. This first mover is Infinite, Eternal, [Page 33] Indivisible and Incorporeal. 8. Motion it self is Eter­nal, because Time, the measure of Motion, is E­ternal.

Concerning the first, I answer, That Nature and all her parts are perpetually self-moving; and therefore it is needless to make three sorts of motions: we might say rather, there are infinite sorts of Mo­tions; but yet all is self-motion, and so is accretion, di­minution, and alteration; for though our senses cannot perceive the motions of all bodies, how, and which way they move, yet it doth not follow from thence, that they are not moving; for solid composed bodies, such as Minerals, may (though not to our humane sense) be more active then some rarer and thinner bodies, as is evident in the Loadstone and Iron, and the Needle; nay, in several other bodies applied by Art Physically: for if Nature be self-moving, as surely she is, then her parts must necessarily be in a continual action, there being no such thing as rest or quiescence in Nature. Next, Aristotle seems to contradict himself, when he says, that all Motion is finite, because it is done in Time, and yet affirms, that both Motion and Time are Eternal; for Eternal is that which hath nei­ther beginning, nor end; and if Motion and Time be thus, how can they be finite? 3. I deny, that whatsoever is body or quantitative, cannot be infinite in act, but is onely infinite in power; for if it be pro­bable, that there can be an Eternal motion, and Eternal [Page 34] time, which is infinite in act; why should it not also be probable, that there is an infinite quantity? For motion is the action of body, and it is absurd, in my opinion, to make body finite, and the action infinite. Truly, if Aristotle means the World to be finite, and yet eternal, I do not conceive how they can consist to­gether; for if the World be finite in quantity, he must allow an infinite Vacuum beyond it; which if he doth, why may not he allow as well an infinite quan­tity? But he has no more ground to deny there is a quantity actually infinite, then he has ground to af­firm that it is onely infinite in power; for if that which is in power, may be deduced into act, I see no reason, but the World, which is Nature, may be said infi­nite in act, as well as in power. 4. I deny also his Theoreme, That whatsoever is moved, must neces­sarily be moved by another; for wheresoever is self­motion, there needs no exterior movent; but Nature and all her parts have self-motion, therefore they stand in no need of an exterior Movent. 'Tis true, one part may occasion another by its outward impulse or force, to move thus or thus; but no part can move by any o­thers motion, but its own, which is an internal, and innate motion; so that every part and particle of Nature has the principle of motion within it self, as consisting all of a composition of animate or self-moving Matter; and if this be so, what need we to trouble our selves about a first Mover? In Infinite and Eternity there is [Page 35] neither first nor last, and therefore Aristotle cannot un­derstand a first mover of Time; and as for motion it self, if all parts move of themselves, as I said before, there is no necessity of an exterior or first Mover. But I would fain know what he means by the action of the first Mover, whether he be actually moving the world, or not? if he be actually moving, he must of necessity have natural motion in himself; but natural self­motion is corporeal; and a corporeal propriety can­not be attributed to an incorporeal substance; But if he be not actually moving, he must move Nature by his powerful Decree and Command; and thus the first mover is none else but God, who may be called so, because he has endued Nature with self-motion, and given it a principle of motion within it self, to move according as he has decreed and ordered it from all E­ternity; for God, being immovable and incorporeal, cannot actually move the Universe, like the chief wheel in a Watch. And as for his incorporeal Intelligences, which are Eternal and immovable, president over the motions of the inferior orbs, Forty seven in number; this is rather a Poetical Fancy, then a probability of truth, and deserves to be banished out of the sphere of Natural Philosophy, which inquires in­to nothing but what is conformable to the truth of nature; and though we are all but guessers, yet he that brings the most probable and rational ar­guments, does come nearer to truth, then those [Page 36] whose Ground is onely Fancy without Reason.

2. Heaven, says Aristotle, is void of Generation and Corruption, and consequently of accretion, dimi­nution and alteration; for there are no contraries in it, nor has it Levity, or Gravity; neither are there more Worlds but one, and that is finite; for if there were more, the Earth of one would move to the Earth of the other, as being of one kind. To which I an­swer: first, As for Generation, Difsolution, Accre­tion, Diminution and Alteration of Celestial bodies; it is more then a humane Creature is able to know; for although we do not see the alterations of them, yet we cannot deny they have natural motion, but where­soever is motion, there's also change and alteration. For, put the case the Moon were such another body as this terrestrial Globe we inhabit, we can onely per­ceive its outward progressive motion; nevertheless it may contain as many different particulars, as this Globe of the Earth, which may have their particular motions, and be generated, dissolved, composed, divided and transformed many, nay, infinite ways: The same may be said of the rest of the Planets, and the fixed Stars. And as for Gravity, and Levity, we do onely perceive they are qualities of those parts that belong to this terrestrial Globe; but we cannot judg of all bodies alike: we see air has neither gravity nor levity; for it neither ascends, nor descends; nay, this terrestrial Globe it self, has neither gravity nor [Page 37] levity, for it is surrounded by the fluid air, and neither ascends nor descends: The truth is, there's no such thing as high and low, in Nature; but onely in refe­rence to some parts; and therefore gravity and levity are not Universal, and necessary attributes of all na­tural bodies. Next, concerning the multiplicity of Worlds, that there can be no such thing, but that the Earth of one, would move towards the Earth of the other: I answer first, There's no necessity that all Worlds must have a Terrestrial Globe; for Nature hath more varieties of Creatures, then Elements, Ve­getables, Minerals, and Animals. Next, if it were so, yet I see no reason that one Creature must neces­sarily move to another of the same kind: For, put the case, as I said before, the Moon was such another ter­restrial Globe as this, yet we see they do not move one to another, but each remains in its own Sphere or Circle.

3. I admire, Aristotle makes the Principles of Na­ture, Matter, Form and Privation, and leaves out the chief, which is Motion; for were there no motion, there would be no variety of figures; besides, Matter and Form are but one thing, for wheresoever is Mat­ter, there is also form or figure; but privation is a non­being, and therefore cannot be a principle of natural bodies.

4. There is no such thing as simple bodies in Na­ture; for if Nature her self consists of a commixture [Page 38] of animate and inanimate Matter, no part can be called simple, as having a composition of the same parts: be­sides, no part can subsist single, or by it self; where­fore the distinction into simple and mixt bodies is need­less; for Elements are as much composed bodies, as other parts of Nature, neither do I understand the difference between perfect and imperfect mixt bodies, for Nature may compose, mix and divide parts as she pleaseth.

5. The primary Qualities of the Elements, as Heat, and Cold, Humidity and Siccity, says Aristotle, are the cause of Generation, when heat and cold overcome the Matter. I wonder he makes qualities to be no sub­stances, or bodies, but accidents; which is something between body, and no body, and yet places them a­bove Matter, and makes Generation their effect; But whatsoever he calls them, they are no more but effects of Nature, and cannot be above their cause, which is Matter; neither is it probable, there are but eighteen passive qualities; he might have said, as well, there are but eighteen sorts of motions; for natural effects go beyond all number, as being infinite.

6. Concerning the Soul, Aristotle doth not believe, That it moves by it self, but is onely moved accidentally, ac­cording to the Motion of the body; but he doth not ex­press from whence the motion of the Soul proceeds, al­though he defines it to be that, by which we live, feel and understand: Neither, says he, is there a Soul [Page 39] diffused through the World, for there are inanimate bo­dies as well as animate; but sense and reason perceives the contrary, to wit, that there is no part of Nature but is animate; that is, has a soul. Sense, says he, is not sensible of it self, nor of its organ, nor of any interior thing; for sense cannot move it self, but is a mutation in the organ, caused by some sensible object: But the ab­surdity of this opinion I have declared heretofore; for it is contrary to humane Reason to believe, first, that sense should be sensible of an outward object, and not of it self, or (which is all one) have perception of ex­terior parts, and not self-knowledg. Next, that an external object should be the cause of sense, when as sense and reason are the chief principles of Nature, and the cause of all natural effects. Again, Sense, says he, is in all Animals, but Fancy is not, for Fancy is not Sense; Fancy acts in him that sleeps, Sense not. To which I answer, first, Fancy or Imagination is a voluntary action of Reason, or of the rational parts of Matter, and if reason be in all Animals, nay, in all Creatures, Fancy is there also; Next, it is evident that Sense acts as much a­sleep as awake, the difference I have expressed else­where, viz. That the sensitive motions, Work inward­ly in sleep, and outwardly awake. The Intellect to Ari­stotle, is that part of the Soul by which it knows and un­derstands, and is onely proper to man, when as sense is pro­per to animals: It is twofold, Patient and Agent, whereof this is Immortal, Eternal, not mixt with the body, but sepa­rable [Page 40] from it, and ever in action: The Patient Intellect, is mortal, and yet void of corruptive passion, not mixt with the body, nor having any corporeal organs. But these, and many other differences of Intellects, which he rehearses, are more troublesome to the understand­ing, then beneficial for the knowledg of Nature: And why should we puzzle our selves with multiplicity of terms and distinctions when there's no need of them: Truly Nature's actions are easie, and we may easily apprehend them without much ado. If Nature be material, as it cannot be proved otherwise, sense and reason are material also, and therefore we need not to introduce an incorporeal mind, or intellect: Be­sides; if sense and reason be a constitutive principle of Nature, all parts of Nature do partake of the same; nor hath man a prerogative before other Creatures in that case, onely the difference and variety of motions makes different figures, and consequently different knowledges and perceptions; and all Fancies, Ima­ginations, Judgment, Memory, Remembrance, and the like, are nothing else but the actions of reason, or of the rational parts of Animate Matter; so that there is no necessity to make a Patient and Agent Intellect, much less to introduce incorporeal substances, to con­found and disturb corporeal Nature.

6. Of Scepticisme, and some other Sects of the An­cient.

THere are several sorts of Scepticks different from each other; for though almost every one of the ancient Philosophers has his own opinions in Natural Philosophy, and goes on his own grounds or princi­ples, yet some come nearer each other, then others do; and though Heraclitus, Democritus, Protagoras, and others, seem to differ from the Scepticks, yet their opi­nions are not so far asunder, but they may all be refer­red to the same sect.

Heraclitus is of opinion, That contraries are in the same thing; and Scepticks affirm, That contraries ap­pear in the same thing; but I believe they may be partly both in the right, and partly both in the wrong. If their opinion be, that there are, or appear contraries in Nature, or in the essence of Matter, they are both in the wrong; but if they believe that Matter has diffe­rent and contrary actions, they are both in the right; for there are not onely real, but also apparent, or seem­ing contraries in Nature, which are her irregularities; to wit, when the sensitive and rational parts of Matter do not move exactly to the nature of their particu­lars: As for example, Honey is sweet to those that are sound, and in health; but bitter to those that have the over-flowing of the Gall: where it is to be observed, [Page 42] that Honey is not changed from its natural propriety, but the motions of the Gall being irregular, make a false copy, like as mad men who think their flesh is stone; or those that apprehend a Bird for a Stone, a Man for a Tree, &c. neither the Flesh, nor Stone, nor Tree are changed from their own particular natures; but the motions of humane sense in the sentient, are irregular, and make false copies of true objects; which is the rea­son that an object seems often to be that, which really it is not. However, those irregularities are true corpo­real motions; and thus there are both real and seeming contraries in Nature; but as I mentioned before, they are not contrary matters, but onely contrary actions.

Democritus says, That Honey is neither bitter, nor sweet, by reason of its different appearance to diffe­rently affected persons; but if so, then he is like those that make neutral beings, which are between body, and no body, which is a Paradox to regular reason.

The Cyrenaick Sect affirms, That all bodies are of an incomprehensible nature; but I am not of their o­pinion: for although the interior, corporeal figurative motions are not subject to every Creatures perception, yet in Nature they are not incomprehensible: As for example, the five senses in man are both knowing and ignorant, not onely of each others perception, but of the several parts of exterior objects; for the Eye one­ly perceives the exterior figure, magnitude and colour, and not the Nose; the Nose perceives its scent, but [Page 43] not its colour and magnitude; the Ear perceives neither its magnitude, colour, nor scent, but onely its sound, and so forth. The like may be said of the infinite per­ceptive parts of Nature, whereby they are both obscu­red and discovered to particulars, and so may be truly known in general, but not in particular by any finite Creature, or part of Nature.

The Academicks say, That some Fancies are credi­ble, others incredible; and of those that are credible, some are credible onely, and some credible, and cir­cumcurrent: As for example, A Rope lying loosely in a dark room, a man receives a credible fancy from it, and runs away; another considering it more exactly, and weighing the circumstances, as that it moves not, that it is of such a colour, and the like, to him it ap­pears a rope, according to the credible and circumcur­rent fancy. To which I answer: A mistake is an ir­regularity of sense, and sometimes of reason too; if sense be onely mistaken, and not reason, reason recti­fies sense; and if reason be onely mistaken, and not sense, then sense rectifies reason; but when both sense and reason are mistaken, the irregularity doth either last longer, or changes into regularity by the informa­tion of some other circumstances, and things which may rectifie sometimes the irregular motions both of sense and reason; that is, the sensitive and rational mo­tions of other parts may rectifie those irregularities.

I could make many more Observations, not onely [Page 44] upon the aforementioned, but several others of the an­cient Philosophers; but my design is not to refute their opinions, but, as I mentioned in the beginning, to shew the difference between theirs, and my own; and by this we may see, that irregularities do not onely appear in our present age, but have been also in times past; nay, ever since Nature has been, or else there would never have been such extravagant opinions con­cerning the Truth of Nature.

But the chief which I observe is, That most of the Ancient make a commixture of natural, and superna­tural; corporeal, and incorporeal beings; and of ani­mate, and inanimate bodies: some derive reason from fancy; and some introduce neutral beings, which are neither corporeal, nor incorporeal, but between both; especially they do make general principles of particular effects, and abstract Quality, Motion, Accidents, Fi­gure, Place, Magnitude, &c. from Matter, which causes so many confusions and differences in their opi­nions; nor can it be otherwise, because of the irre­gularities and divisions of Natures corporeal actions; and most of our Moderns do either follow altogether the opinions of the ancient Philosophers, putting them onely into a new dress, or patch them up with some of their own, and so make a Gallimafry in Natural Phi­losophy.

AN EXPLANATION OF Some obscure and doubtful passages occurring in the Philosophical Works, hitherto published BY THE AUTHORESSE.

AS I have made a beginning in my Philosophical Letters Sect. 4. Let. 33. p. 529. to clear some doubtful passages which I marked in my Philosophical Opinions; so I thought it necessary to second them with these following Notes, and to add not onely what was forgot in the same Book, but to explain also some other passages which hitherto I observed in the mentioned Book of Letters. For though I know that it is but in vain to hinder all ob­jections, yet I'le endeavour, as much as lies in me, to pre­vent such as might be occasioned by the obscurity of my Writings. No Creature can be so perfect as not to commit Errors sometimes; and so may I in my Philosophical Works, where the causes of natural effects are not obvious to every ones sense: Where­fore, if in some things, which yet are but few, I have altered my Conceptions from those I maintained here­tofore, none, I hope, will condemn me for it, but ra­ther account me so great a friend to Truth, that instead [Page 46] of being wedded to my own opinions, as some or most Philosophers are, who think it a great disgrace to go but a hairs breadth from the least tittle of what they have once asserted, though the Error be as plain as Noon­day: I am most willing to desert what hitherto I have maintained upon more rational and probable arguments then mine, and shall joyfully embrace whatever I am in reason convinced to come nearer to Truth. But find­ing, as yet, my opinions grounded upon sense and rea­son, I am resolved to maintain them so long, till the contrary be proved; and therefore left their obscurity occasion a wrong interpretation in the mind of the Rea­der, I have (as mentioned) added an explanation of these following Passages.

Whensoever, in my Philosophical Opinions, I say Animate Matter and Motion, or the motions of A­nimate Matter; I do not take them to be two diffe­rent things, but one and the same; and therefore, both in my Philosophical Letters, and these present Obser­vations, instead of that expression, I say Corporeal figu­rative Motion; for Self-motion, and Animate Matter, are one and the same thing.

Also, when I call Phil. Opin. part. 1. c. 24. the Animate part of Matter the Cause of Motion; I do not mean that considered in general, they are two distinct things, as a Cause and Effect uses to be; for, as I said before, Self-moving Matter, and Corporeal Self-motion, are equivalent, and signifie the same; but I speak of particular motions, [Page 47] which are particular actions of Infinite self-moving Matter, which I call effects; and are nothing else but infinite parts of an Infinite whole.

Again: when I name Animate and Inanimate Matter, my meaning is not, that they are two distinct matters or substances, as two wholes; but two degrees or parts of one onely Matter whose Nature is one and the same, that is, to be material.

When I sayPart. 1. c. 3., that every part or degree of onely Matter is Infinite, I do not mean the particular effects, parts or figures of self-moving Matter; for it is impos­sible that a part or particular figure can be infinite, as I have often declared: But I speak of the three prime degrees of Matter, which are the constitutive princi­ples of Nature, and the cause of all natural effects, viz. the animate (sensitive and rational) and the inani­mate; which as they are intermixt together, are infi­nite in the body or substance of Nature, that is, they make but one infinite, corporeal, self-moving Nature; and therefore I desire that my expression of the menti­oned parts, may be understood as of united, and not as of separated parts; for it is impossible almost, to con­ceive them divided, much less to separate them actually from each other: and since Nature is one infinite bo­dy, that is, of an infinite bulk or extension, and con­sists of animate and inanimate parts of Matter; it must of necessity follow, that these mentioned parts are infi­nite also; for there is no particle of Nature whatever, [Page 48] nay, could it be an Atome, that consists not of those men­tioned parts or degrees. Thus wheresoever I name Infinite degrees of Infinite Matter Part. 1. c. 4, 9, 11., I call them In­finite, not as divided, or several, but as united in one body; producing infinite effects; for, as I said, they make but one Infinite body of Nature.

Also when in my Philosophical Letters Sect. 4 Let. 33. p. 530., I say, that the Animate part of Matter, considered in it self, could not produce Infinite effects without the Inanimate, ha­ving nothing to work upon, and withal; some per­haps will think I contradict my self, because in other places, I have declared, that the rational part of ani­mate Matter works or makes figures in its own degree, without the help either of the sensitive or inanimate; besides, it being matter, or material, why should it not be able to produce effects in it self, as well as with other parts: To which I answer, my opinion is, that the animate part of Matter, by which I include the sensi­tive as well as the rational, could not without the inanimate part of Matter, produce such infinite vari­ety of effects as Nature has, and as are partly subject to our perception; for without it there would be no gros­ser substance for the sensitive to work on, nor nothing for the rational to direct: besides, there would be no such degrees of Matter as thicker and thinner, rarer and denser, &c. nor no variety of figures; nay, were there no inanimate part of Matttr as well as animate, all productions, dissolutions; and what actions soever [Page 49] would be done in an instant of time, and a man, or any other natural Creature would be produced as soon as a thought of the mind; wherefore to poise or bal­lance the actions of Nature, there must of necessity be an inanimate, dull, or passive degree of Matter, as well as there is an animate, active and self-moving; and this triumvirate of the constitutive degrees of material nature is so necessary, that Nature could not be what she is, nor work such variety of figures, as she doth, without it

When I say Part 1. c. 13., that Matter cannot know it self, be­cause it is infinite; I do no not mean as if it had not self­knowledg; for as Matter is self-moving, so it is also self­knowing; nay, that the Inanimate part of Matter has also self-knowledg, I have sufficiently declared here­tofore; but my meaning is, that its knowledg cannot be limited or circumscribed; and that it is an infinite na­tural self-knowledg.

Also when in the same place I say, That Nature hath no free-will, and that no change or alteration can be made in infinite and eternal Matter; I mean concern­ing its own nature; for Matter cannot go beyond its na­ture, that is, change from being Matter to something immaterial, or from a natural being, to a non-being; nevertheless, Nature in her particular actions works and changes her effects as she pleases, and according to the wisdom and liberty God hath given her,

[Page 50] When I say, that the sensitive animate part of Mat­ter is the life of the rational soul; I do not mean, as if the rational part was not living as well as the sensitive; but I speak comparatively, in comparison to man; who as he has humane life, soul and body, all three con­stituting or composing, but one intire man; so in the composition of Nature, I name the Inanimate part the Body, the Sensitive, the Life, and the Rational, the Soul of Nature; nevertheless all parts have life and knowledg; for the inanimate, although it is not self­moving, and has not an active life and a perceptive knowledg, yet has it life and knowledg according to the nature of its degree, that is, an innate and fixt self-life and self-knowledg; and the sensitive, although it is not so subtile, piercing and active a degree of self-moving Matter as the rational, yet has it an active life and know­ledg, according to the Nature of its degree; and it is well to be observed, that each degree in their various commixtures, do never change their natures; for the sensitive doth not acquire a rational life and knowledg, nor the rational a sensitive; neither does the inanimate part get an active life and a perceptive knowledg, for all they are so closely commixt, but each retains the nature of its degree; for as one part cannot be another part, so one parts life and knowledg, cannot become another parts life and knowledg; or else it would produce a confusion in Nature and all her actions.

[Page 51] In what place soever, both in my Philosophical Opinions and Letters, I say, that the inanimate part of Matter has neither life nor self-knowledg; I mean, it has not an active life and a perceptive self-knowledg, such as the animate part of Matter has; for though the inanimate part of Matter is moved, yet it is not self­moving, but it moves by the help of the animate parts of Matter; which by reason of their close and insepa­rable union and commixture, bear it along in all their actions and operations, and thus its motions or actions are onely passive, not active: Nevertheless, although it has not self-motion, yet may it have life and self-know­ledg, according to its own Nature; for self-knowledg does not depend upon motion, but is a fixt and innate being: In short, all parts or degrees of Matter are li­ving and knowing, but not all are self-moving, but onely the animate.

When I say, that all Matter lives in figures and* Phil. Opin. part. 2. c. 2. Creatures, and all figures and Creatures lie or live in Matter; I mean, that Infinite Matter moves figu­ratively, and that all Creatures are composed by cor­poreal figurative motion; for in what places soever of my Philosophical Works, I say Figure and Motion, I do not mean they are two several things distinct from body, but I understand by it, corporeal figurative motion, or self-moving figurative Matter, which is one and the same.

[Page 52] When I sayPart. 2. c. 9., That the Rational part of Matter lives in the Sensitive, and the Sensitive in the Inani­mate; I do not mean, that one lies within the other like as several Boxes are put together, the lesser in the bigger; but I use this expression onely to denote the close conjunction of these three degrees, and that they are inseparably mixt together.

Concerning the Chapter of Vacuum in my Philoso­phical Opinions Part. 1. c. 6. though I was doubtful then which opinion to adhere to, yet I have sufficiently declared my meaning thereof in the foregoing observations, to wit, that there can be no vacuity in Natures body.

When I name six Principal Motions, viz. Attra­ction,Phil. Opin. part 1. c. 9. Contraction, Dilation, Digestion, Retention, Expulsion; I do not mean that they are the principles of all motions, no more then a circular motion can be said the principle of all natural motions, as I have de­clared before; for particular motions are but effects of self-moving Matter. But I call them principal, be­cause to our humane sense they seem to be some chief sorts of motions, in those natural bodies that are sub­ject to our perception; but there may be infinite other sorts of motions which we know not of; the same may be said when I speak of the ground of Infinite compo­sitions, which is symmetry; and infinite divisions, which is number; for to speak properly, there's no other ground, but self-moving Matter in Nature

[Page 53] When I make a distinction Phil. Let. Sect. 1. Let. 5. p. 23. between forced, or Artificial and Natural Motions; as that, for example, the motion of a Watch, or a Clock, is artificial, and not natural; my meaning is not, as if artificial moti­ons were something super, or praeter-natural, and had no relation to Nature; but by the word Natural, I understand the particular nature of some certain figure or Creature; and when such a figure has some other exterior motions besides those which are proper to its particular nature, caused by Art, I call them artifi­cial, and do distinguish them from such motions as are proper and natural to it; as for example, mans exte­rior natural local motions, are going, leaping, dan­cing, running, &c. but not flying; which is a moti­on to Birds, and winged Creatures: Now if a man should by some Artacquire this motion of flying, and imitate such winged Creatures to whom it is natural, then it would be an artificial or forced action to him, and not a natural; also the nature of Iron or Steel is not to have an exterior progressive local motion, such as animals and other Creatures have, and therefore the motion of the wheels of a Watch is forced, or artificial: Nevertheless, I say, that all these motions, although they be forced or artificial, do not proceed from some exterior agent any otherwise but occasionally, and that all motions whatsoever are intrinsecally inherent in the body, or which is in motion; for motion cannot be transferred out of one body into another, but every [Page 54] body moves by its own motion. Thus the intrinsecal principle and cause of all particular, both interior and exterior motions or actions, is in the body, which is in motion, even of those we call forced or artificial, and proceeds not from some exterior agent, but occasio­nally; for every part and particle of Nature is self­moving, as consisting of a commixture of animate Mat­ter; and no motion can be imparted without body, by reason there's no such thing as an incorporeal mo­tion.

When I say, There is no rest in Nature; I mean, that all parts are either moving, or moved; for al­though the inanimate part of Matter has no self-mo­tion, yet it is moved, and consequently never at rest; Nor can we say, that things do rest, or have no motion at all, when they have not exterior progressive motion, such as is perceptible by our sight; for this is but a gross exterior motion; and a world of Gold may be as active interiously, as a world of Air is exteriously; that is, the actions of Gold are as alterable, as those of air.

When, contradicting the opinion of Mr. Hobbes * Phil. Let. Sect. 1. 1. 12. concerning voluntary motions, who says, That volun­tary motions, as going, speaking, moving our lips, depend upon a precedent thought of whither, which way, and what, &c. I answer, that it implies a contradiction, to call them Voluntary Motions, and yet say they depend on our imagination; for if the imagination draws them this or that way, how can they be voluntary? My [Page 55] meaning is not as if those actions were not self-actions, nor as if there were no voluntary actions at all; for to make a balance between Natures actions, there are voluntary, as well as occasioned actions, both in sense and reason; but because Mr Hobbs says, that those actions are depending upon Imagination and Fancy, and that Imagination is the first internal beginning of them, which sets them a going, as the prime wheel of a Watch does the rest: My opinion is, that after this rate they cannot properly be called voluntary, but are rather necessitated, at least occasioned by the Mind or Fancy; for I oppose voluntary actions to those that are occasioned or forced; which voluntary actions are made by the self-moving parts by rote, and of their own accord; but occasioned actions are made by imitation, although they are all self-actions, that is, move by their own inherent self-motion.

When I say, That Animals by their shapes are not Phil. Opin. p. 2. c. 6. tied or bound to any other kind of Creature, either for sup­port or nourishment, as Vegetables are, but are loose and free of themselves from all others: My opinion is not, as if the animal figure were a single figure, precised from all the rest of natural parts or figures, or from the body of Nature, and stood in no need either of nourishment or support, but could subsist of it self without any re­spect or relation to other Creatures: But I speak com­paratively, that in comparison to Vegetables, or such like Creatures, it is more free in its exterior progressive [Page 56] local motions then they, which as we see, being taken out of the ground where they grow, wither and change their interior natural figures; for animals, may by a visible progressive motion remove from such parts to other parts, which Vegetables cannot do: neverthe­less Animals depend as much upon other parts and Creatures, as others depend on them, both for nou­rishment and respiration, &c. although they may sub­sist without being fixt to some certain parts of ground: The truth is, some animals can live no more without air, then fishes can live without water, or Vegetables without ground; so that all parts must necessarily live with each other, and none can boast that it needs not the assistance of any other part, for they are all parts of one body.

When discoursing of the growth of an Animal, IPhil. Opin. part 2. c. 3. say, that attractive motions do gather and draw sub­stance proper to and for that figure; I mean, that such sorts of corporeal motions attract and invite by sympa­thy other parts to help to form that Creature; so that every where by several substances, I mean several parts which are particular substances; that is, corporeal par­ticular figures; and by several places in the same Chap­ter, I understand several distances of parts.

When in my Philosophical Letters I do mention that all Perception is made by Patterning, I mean chiefly the perception of the exterior sensitive organs in animals, as smelling, hearing, seeing, tasting, [Page 57] touching; whose perception, I mean, is made by that sort of motion which is call'd patterning; for in my Book of Philosophical Letters, I do onely prove, that all perceptions cannot be made by one sort of mo­tion; as also that perception is not immediately made by the exterior object, but by the perceiving or senti­ent parts: Nor do I treat in it of all kinds or sorts of perceptions belonging to all kinds or sorts of Creatures in Infinite Nature; for they are too numerous to be known by one particular; How can an Animal tell what perception a Vegetable or Mineral has? We may perceive that the Air, which is an Element, doth pattern out sound; for it is not done by reverberation, as pressure and reaction, by reason there will be in some places, not onely two several Ecchoes of one sound, but in some three, or four; but surely one sound can­not be in several distant places at one time: Also a Looking-glass, we see, does pattern out the figure of an object; but yet we cannot be certainly affirmed, that either the Glass, or the Air, have the same per­ceptions which Animals have; for although their pat­terns are alike, yet their perceptions may be different: As for example, the picture of a Man may be like its original, but yet who knows what perception it has? for though it represents the exterior figure of an Ani­mal, yet it is not of the nature of an Animal; and there­fore although a man may perceive his picture, yet he knows not what perception the picture has of him; for [Page 58] we can but judg by our selves of the perceptions of our own kind, that is, of Animal kind; and not of the per­ceptions of other Creatures; for example, I observe, that the perception of my exterior senses is made by an easie way of patterning out exterior objects, and so conclude of the rest of my own kind, to wit, that the perception of their exterior sensitive organs, is made af­ter the same manner or way; nay, I perceive, that also some perceptions of several other sorts of Creatures are made by way of patterning, as in the forementioned examples of the Air and Glass, and in Infectious Dis­eases; where several Creatures will be infected, by one object; which certainly is not by an immediate pro­pagation on so many numerous parts, proceeding from the object, but by imitation of the perceiving parts; but yet I cannot infer from thence, that all perceptions in Nature are made by imitation or patterning; for some may, and some may not: and although our rati­onal perception, being more subtil then the sensitive, may perceive somewhat more, and judg better of out­ward objects then the sensitive; yet it cannot be infal­libly assured, that it is onely so, and not otherwise; for we see that some animals are produced out of Vegeta­bles, whose off-spring is not any ways like their produ­cer; which proves, that not all actions of Nature are made by imitation or patterning. In short, our rea­son does observe, that all perception in general what­soever, is made by corporeal figurative self-motion, but [Page 59] it cannot perceive the particular figurative motions that make every perception; and though some Learn­ed are of opinion, that all perceptions are made by pres­sure and reaction, yet it is not probable to sense and reason; for this, being but one sort of action, would not make such variety of perceptions in the infinite parts of Nature, as we may perceive there are.

Whensoever I say, that outward objects work or cause such or such effects in the body sentient; I do not mean, that the object is the onely immediate cause of the changes of those parts in the sentient body; but that it is onely an external or occasional cause, and that the effects in the sentient proceed from its own in­herent natural motions; which upon the perception of the exterior object, cause such effects in the sentient, as are either agreeable to the motions of the object, and that by way of imitation, which is called Sympathy; or disagreeable, which is call'd Antipathy.

When I say, Phil. Opin. part 3. c. 19. That the several senses of Animals, pattern out the several proprieties of one object; as for example, the Tongue patterns out the taste; the No­strils the smell; the Ears the noise; the Eyes the exte­rior figure, shape, colour, &c. and do prove by this, that they are different things, dividable from each o­ther; and yet in other places, do affirm, that colour, place, figure, quantity or magnitude, &c. are one and the same with body, and inseparable from each other, 'tis no contradiction; for to be dividable from [Page 60] such or such parts, and to be dividable from Matter, are several things: Smell and Taste, although they be material or corporeal, and cannot be divided from Matter, yet there is no necessity that all parts of Na­ture must be subject to smell, or taste, or that such parts must have such smells, and such tastes; for though Colour, Place, Taste, Smell, &c. are material, and cannot be without body; yet may they be conceived by our sense and reason to be different and several figures, parts or actions; for as there is no such thing as sin­gle parts, or single divisions in Nature, but all com­positions, divisions, changes and alterations, are with­in the body of Nature; and yet there is such a variety and difference of natural figures and actions, that one figure is not another, nor one action another; so it is likewise with the mentioned proprieties, or what you'l call them; which, although they cannot be separated from body or matter, yet they may be altered, changed, composed and divided with their parts several ways, and be perceived as various and different actions of Na­ture, as they are; for as one body may have several different motions at one and the same time; so it may also have several proprieties, though not dividable from Matter (for all that is in Nature, is material; nor can there be any such thing as Immaterial accidents, quali­ties, properties, and the like) yet discernable by their different actions, and changeable by the self-moving power of Nature.

[Page 61] But mistake me not, when I say they are several different figures, parts or actions; for my meaning is not, as if body and they were different things se­parable from each other; or as if Colour, Place, Figure, Magnitude, &c. were several parts of mat­ter; for then it would follow, that some parts could be without place, some without figure, some with­out colour, &c. which is impossible; for could there be a single Atome, yet that Atome would have Colour, Place, Figure, Magnitude, &c. onely there would be no motion for want of Parts, and consequently no Perception: But my meaning is, That the several properties of a Body, as for ex­ample, Tast, Touch, Smell, Sound, being percei­ved by the several senses of Animals, to wit, the Tast by the Tongue, the Smell by the Nose, and Colour and Figure by the Eye, &c. it proves that they are several corporeal actions; for the Tast is not the Smell, nor Smell the Sound, nor Sound the Colour: Nevertheless they are all proprieties of the same body, and no more dividable from body, then motion is from body, or body from matter; onely they are made according to the several compositions and divisions of parts: And as for Colour, Place, Magnitude, Figure, &c. as I said before, could there be an Atome, it would have Colour, Place, Figure; and though parts be changed millions of ways, yet they cannot lose Colour, Place and Fi­gure. [Page 62] The truth is, as there are no single finite parts in Nature, so there can neither be single actions, or single perceptions; but as the parts or actions of Na­ture move in one body, and not singly, several infinite ways, so the self-active parts in one composed figure, make perceptions of those several compositions in ex­terior objects.

But since my Opinion is, that the Perception of the exterior animal senses is made by that sort of mo­tion which is call'd Imitation or Patterning, as for example, that the perception of Seeing is made by the sensitive, corporeal, figurative motions in the Organ of sight, (which is the Eye) by their pattern­ing out the figure of an exterior object; some perhaps will question, how it be possible that an eye, as also a glass, which is a more solid and dense body than an eye, should pattern out so many different figures of exterior objects, and yet keep their own figures perfect?

To which I answer, first, That not all the corpo­real motions of an Object, are perceptible by ani­mal sense, which is too gross a sort of perception to perceive them all; for can we say that Air, Light, Earth, &c. have no other motions but what we perceive? We observe in a Sun-dial, that the light removes, but we cannot see how it removes; and therefore our eye cannot perceive all the motions or actions of an object. Next I say, as for the patterns [Page 63] of the sensitive motions, the framing of them is no hinderance to those motions that preserve the organ in its being; for there are many numerous and diffe­rent sorts of motions in one composed figure, and yet none is obstructive to the other, but each knows its own work, and they act all unanimously to the conservation of the whole figure; also when some actions change, it is not necessary that they must all change at the same time; for if it were so, there would be no difference between the actions of Na­ture, nor no difference of figures.

Again, it may be objected, That if we can per­ceive the figure of an object, then we must of ne­cessity perceive the substance also; figure and body being but one thing; for example, if we can perceive the figure of a thought, we must also perceive that degree of matter which is named Rational; the same may be said of the other degrees of matter, the Sen­sitive and Inanimate.

I answer, That although the Figures are percei­ved; yet the degree of matter cannot be perceived, at least not in all objects, nor by all our sensitive organs; for though the eye perceives light, yet it does not perceive what light is made of, neither does the Ear perceive it, but onely the Eye; also the Ear perceives sound, yet the Eye does not; nor does the Ear know or perceive the proper and immediate motions and parts that make the sound. Again, al­though [Page 64] the Eye, or rather the sensitive motions that make the perception of sight, perceive the light of fire, yet they do not perceive the heat thereof, which is onely subject to Touch; the same may be said of Smell and Tast; so that not all the parts are subject to one sense; and if this be onely in one sort of Creatures, what difference of perception may there be in the infinite parts of Nature? The truth is, our humane perception is stinted, so that we cannot perceive all objects, but those that are with­in the compass of being perceived by our senses; nay it is without question, but that there are more per­ceptions in man than these Five, because there are Numerous different perceptive parts, which have all their peculiar perceptions which we do not know of, what they are, nor how they are made. But, as I said before, although the figure may be perceived, yet the substance may not; and yet this does not prove that figure and body are not one thing; for though such a figure is not bound to such parts, yet parts cannot be figureless, no more then figure can be bodiless; and the change of figures is not an anni­hilation or a total separation of figure from body; a mans face may change from being red, to pale, and from pale to red, and yet the substance of his face may remain the same; the like may be said of the figures in our Eyes, or of the figures made by a Looking­glass, of exterior objects, they may change, and [Page 65] yet the Eye remain perfect; and although the sub­tilest corporeal motions cannot be perceived by us so perfectly as the grosser actions of Nature, yet we cannot but know by our rational perception, that there are such subtile actions which are no wayes subject to our exterior, sensitive perception: For though all actions of Nature are perceptive, yet none can be more agil and active then the rational; and next to them, none more but the sensitive action of imitation and patterning; for as we may perceive, the actions of production, dissolution, growth, de­cay, &c. are far more slower then the actions of patterning or copying out of exterior objects, by reason those sorts of actions are gross, but these are subtil, purer and finer, and therefore quicker and agiler.

But some may ask, Whether in the sensitive a­ction of imitating or patterning out the figures of forreign objects, there be inanimate matter mixt with it?

I answer, Yes; for 'tis impossible that one should either be, or work without the other, by reason it is the propriety of the sensitive corporeal motions to work upon, and with the inanimate parts, and the chief difference that is between the rational and sen­sitive parts; for the rational can act within their own degree of matter, but the sensitive are always incum­bred with labouring on the inanimate, and cannot [Page 66] work so as the rational do.

But then they'l say, If the sensitive parts be so incumbred with the inanimate, how is it possible that they can make such quick perceptions as we ob­serve they do?

I answer; There are many kinds and sorts of Per­ceptions, whereof some are slower, and some quick­er then others, according to the several degrees of grossness and purity of the inanimate parts; so that we have no reason to wonder at the variety of per­ceptions, and how some come to be quicker, and some slower; for some parts of inanimate matter may be so pure and fine, that, were they subject to our perception, we should take them to be parts of the Animate degree.

Lastly; Some might say, That although the sen­sitive degree of matter be not the same with the ina­nimate, yet they being so closely intermixt, as I have described, may by a voluntary agreement, alter the parts of Nature as they please, as, from a Vegeta­ble into a Mineral; from a Mineral into an Ani­mal, &c. and that either of their own accord, or by imitation.

I answer; It may be possible in Nature, but yet it is not probable that they do so, by reason all the self-moving parts do not in all composed figures work agreeably, or alike; but their actions are for the most part poised by Opposites, not onely in infinite [Page 67] Nature, but also in all composed figures, especially those that consist of different parts: Besides, the ra­tional parts of matter being the surveighing, order­ing and designing parts, do not suffer them in such actions to work as they please, but order them all ac­cording to the Wisdom of Nature; and though some­times it may happen that they work or move irregular­ly, yet that is not perpetual in all actions, but sometimes; for wheresoever is crossing and opposition, there must of necessity be sometimes irregularities and disorders.

When in my Philosophical Letters, I say, ThatSect. 1. Let. 10. 12. there is difference between Life and Knowledg; by Life I understand Sense, or the sensitive parts of matter; and by Knowledg Reason, or the Rational parts of Matter; not as if the sensitive parts had not Knowledg as well as the rational, or the rational Life as well as the sensitive; but I speak comparatively, in the same sense as I name the sensitive part the Life, the rational the Soul, and the inanimate the Body of Nature.

And thus much for the present.

There may be many more the like places in my Philosophical Works, especially my Philosophical and Physical Opinions, which may seem dubious and obscure; but I will not trouble you now with a long Commentary or Explanation of them; but if God grant me life, I intend to rectifie that mention­ed [Page 68] Book of Philosophical Opinions, in the best manner I can, because it contains the Ground of my Philosophy, in which I hope there will be no la­bour lost, but it will facilitate the Understanding of the Reader, and render my Conceptions easie and intel­ligible, which is the onely thing I am at, and labour for.

THE DESCRIPTION OF A …

THE DESCRIPTION OF A NEW WORLD, CALLED The Blazing World.

WRITTEN By the Thrice Noble, Illustrious, and Excellent PRINCESSE, THE Duchess of Newcastle.

LONDON, Printed by A. Maxwell, in the Year, 1666.

TO THE DUCHESSE OF NEWCASTLE, ON HER New Blazing World.

OUr Elder World, with all their Skill and Arts,
Could but divide the World into three Parts:
Columbus then for Navigation fam'd,
Found a new World, America 'tis nam'd:
Now this new World was found, it was not made,
Onely discovered, lying in Times shade.
Then what are You, having no Chaos found
To make a World, or any such least ground?
But your creating Fancy, thought it fit
To make your World of Nothing, but pure Wit.
Your Blazing-world, beyond the Stars mounts higher,
Enlightens all with a Coelestial Fier.
William Newcastle.

TO THE READER.

If you wonder, that I join a work of Fancy to my serious Philosophical Contemplations; think not that it is out of a disparagement to Philosophy; or out of an opinion, as if this noble study were but a Fiction of the Mind; for though Philosophers may err in searching and enqui­ring after the Causes of Natural effects, and many times embrace falshoods for Truths; yet this doth not prove, that the Ground of Philosophy is meerly Fiction, but the error proceeds from the different motions of Reason, which cause different Opinions in different parts, and in some are more irregular then in others; for Reason being dividable, be­cause material, cannot move in all parts alike; and since there is but one Truth in Nature, all those that hit not this Truth, do err, some more, some less; for though some may come nearer the mark then others, which makes their Opinions seem more probable and rational then others; yet as long as they swerve from this onely Truth, they are in [Page] the wrong: Nevertheless, all do ground their Opinions upon Reason; that is, upon rational probabilities, at least, they think they do: But Fictions are an issue of mans Fancy, framed in his own Mind, according as he pleases, without regard, whether the thing, he fancies, be really exi­stent without his mind or not; so that Reason searches the depth of Nature, and enquires after the true Causes of Natural Effects; but Fancy creates of its own accord whatsoever it pleases, and delights in its own work. The end of Reason, is Truth; the end of Fancy, is Fiction: But mistake me not, when I distinguish Fancy from Rea­son; I mean not as if Fancy were not made by the Ratio­nal parts of Matter ; but by Reason I understand a ra­tional search and enquiry into the causes of natural effects; and by Fancy a voluntary creation or production of the Mind, both being effects, or rather actions of the rational part of Matter; of which, as that is a more profitable and useful study then this, so it is also more laborious and diffi­cult, and requires sometimes the help of Fancy, to recre­ate the Mind, and withdraw it from its more serious Con­templations.

And this is the reason, why I added this Piece of Fancy to my Philosophical Observations, and joined them as two Worlds at the ends of their Poles; both for my own sake, to divert my studious thoughts, which I employed in the Contemplation thereof, and to delight the Reader with variety, which is always pleasing. But left my Fancy should stray too much, I chose such a Fiction as would be [Page] agreeable to the subject I treated of in the former parts; it is a'Description of a New World, not such as Lucian's, or the French man's World in the Moon; but a World of my own Creating, which I call the Blazing-World: The first part whereof is Romancical, the second Philoso­phical, and the third is meerly Fancy, or (as I may call it) Fantastical; which if it add any satisfaction to you, I shall account my self a Happy Creatoress; if not, I must be content to live a melancholly Life in my own World; I cannot call it a poor World, if poverty be one­ly want of Gold, Silver, and Jewels; for there is more Gold in it then all the Chymists ever did, and (as I verily believe) will ever be able to make. As for the Rocks of Diamonds, I wish with all my soul they might be shared amongst my noble female friends, and upon that con­dition, I would willingly quit my part; and of the Gold I should onely desire so much as might suffice to repair my Noble Lord and Husband's Losses: For I am not Cove­tous, but as Ambitious as ever any of my Sex was, is, or can be; which makes, that though I cannot be Henry the Fifth, or Charles the Second, yet I endeavour to be Margaret the First; and although I have neither power, time nor occasion to conquer the world as Alexander and Caesar did; yet rather then not to be Mistress of one, since Fortune and the Fates would give me none, I have made a World of my own: for which no body, I hope, will blame me, since it is in every ones power to do the like.

THE DESCRIPTION OF A NEW WORLD, CALLED The Blazing World.

A Merchant travelling into a forreign Country, fell extreamly in Love with a young Lady; but being a stranger in that Nation, and beneath her both in Birth and Wealth, he could have but little hopes of obtaining his desire; however his love grow­ing more and more vehement upon him, even to the slighting of all difficulties, he resolved at last to steal her away; which he had the better opportunity to do, because her Fathers house was not far from the Sea, [Page 2] and she often using to gather shells upon the shore, ac­companied not with above two or three of her servants, it encouraged him the more to execute his design. Thus coming one time with a little light Vessel, not unlike a Packet-boat, mann'd with some few Sea-men, and well victualled, for fear of some accidents, which might perhaps retard their journey, to the place where she used to repair, he forced her away: But when he fan­cied himself the happiest man of the World, he proved to be the most unfortunate; for Heaven frowning at his theft, raised such a Tempest, as they knew not what to do, or whither to steer their course; so that the Ves­sel, both by its own lightness, and the violent motion of the Wind, was carried as swift as an Arrow out of a Bow, towards the North-pole, and in a short time reached the Icy Sea, where the wind forced it amongst huge pieces of Ice; but being little, and light, it did by assistance and favour of the Gods to this virtuous Lady, so turn and wind through those precipices, as if it had been guided by some Experienced Pilot, and skilful Mariner: But alas! those few men which were in it, not knowing whither they went, nor what was to be done in so strange an adventure, and not being provided for so cold a Voyage, were all frozen to death, the young Lady onely, by the light of her Beauty, the heat of her Youth, and Protection of the Gods, remaining alive: Neither was it a wonder that the men did freeze to death; for they were not onely [Page 3] driven to the very end or point of the Pole of that World, but even to another Pole of another World, which joined close to it; so that the cold having a dou­ble strength at the conjunction of those two Poles, was insupportable: At last, the Boat still passing on, was forced into another World; for it is impossible to round this Worlds Globe from Pole to Pole, so as we do from East to West; because the Poles of the other World, joining to the Poles of this, do not allow any further passage to surround the World that way; but if any one arrives to either of these Poles, he is either forced to return, or to enter into another World; and least you should scruple at it, and think, if it were thus, those that live at the Poles would either see two Suns at one time, or else they would never want the Suns light for six months together, as it is commonly believed; You must know, that each of these Worlds having its own Sun to enlighten it, they move each one in their peculiar circles; which motion is so just and ex­act, that neither can hinder or obstruct the other; for they do not exceed their Tropicks, and although they should meet, yet we in this world cannot so well per­ceive them, by reason of the brightness of our Sun, which being nearer to us, obstructs the splendor of the Suns of the other Worlds, they being too far off to be discerned by our optick perception, except we use very good Telescopes, by which skilful Astronomers have often observed two or three Suns at once.

[Page 4] But to return to the wandering Boat, and the distres­ed Lady, she seeing all the Men dead, found small comfort in life; their bodies which were preserved all that while from putrefaction and stench, by the extre­mity of cold, began now to thaw, and corrupt; whereupon she having not strength enough to fling them over-board, was forced to remove out of her small Cabine, upon the deck, to avoid that nauseous smell; and finding the Boat swim between two plains of Ice, as a stream that runs betwixt two shores, at last perceived land, but covered all with snow: from which came walking upon the Ice strange Creatures, in shape like Bears, onely they went upright as men; those Creatures coming near the Boat, catched hold of it with their Paws, that served them instead of hands; some two or three of them entred first; and when they came out, the rest went in one after another; at last having viewed and observed all that was in the Boat, they spake to each other in a language which the Lady did not understand, and having carried her out of the Boat, sunk it, together with the dead men.

The Lady now finding her self in so strange a place, and amongst such a wonderful kind of Creatures, was extreamly strucken with fear, and could entertain no other Thoughts, but that every moment her life was to be a sacrifice to their cruelty; but those Bear-like Creatures, how terrible soever they appear'd to her sight, yet were they so far from exercising any cruelty [Page 5] upon her, that rather they shewed her all civility and kindness imaginable; for she being not able to go up­on the ice, by reason of its slipperiness, they took her up in their rough armes, and carried her into their City, where instead of houses, they had Caves under ground; and as soon as they enter'd the City, both Males and Females, young and old, flockt together to see this Lady, holding up their paws in admiration; at last having brought her into a certain large and spa­cious Cave, which they intended for her reception, they left her to the custody of the Females, who en­tertained her with all kindness and respect, and gave her such victuals as they were used to eat; but seeing her constitution neither agreed with the temper of that Climate, nor their Diet, they were resolved to carry her into another Island of a warmer temper; in which were men like Foxes, onely walking in an upright shape, who received their neighbours the Bear-men with great civility and courtship, very much admi­ring this beauteous Lady, and having discoursed some while together, agreed at last to make her a present to the Emperour of their world; to which end, after she had made some short stay in the same place, they brought her cross that Island to a large River, whose stream run smooth and clear, like Chrystal; in which were numerous Boats, much like our Fox-traps; in one whereof she was carried, some of the Bear­and Fox-men waiting on her; and as soon as they had [Page 6] crossed the River, they came into an Island where there were Men which had heads, beaks, and feathers, like Wild-geese, onely they went in an upright shape, like the Bear-men and Fox-men; their rumps they carried between their legs, their wings were of the same length with their bodies, and their tails of an indiffe­rent size, trailing after them like a Ladies Garment; and after the Bear- and Fox-men had declared their intention and design to their neighbours, the Geese- or Bird-men, some of them joined to the rest, and attended the Lady through that Island, till they came to another great and large River, where there was a preparation made of many Boats, much like Birds nests, onely of a bigger size; and having crost that River, they arrived into another Island, which was of a pleasant and mild temper, full of Woods, and the inhabitants thereof were Satyrs, who received both the Bear- Fox- and Bird-men, with all respect and civility; and after some conferences (for they all understood each others language) some chief of the Satyrs joining to them, accompanied the Lady out of that Island to another River, wherein were very handsome and commodious Barges; and having crost that River, they entered into a large and spacious Kingdom, the men whereof were of a Grass-green complexion, who entertained them very kindly, and provided all conveniences for their further voyage: hitherto they had onely crost Rivers, but now they [Page 7] could not avoid the open Seas any longer; wherefore they made their Ships and tacklings ready to sail over into the Island, where the Emperor of their Blazing­world (for so it was call'd) kept his residence; very good Navigators they were; and though they had no knowledg of the Load-stone, or Needle, or pendulous Watches, yet (which was as serviceable to them) they had subtile observations, and great practice; in so much that they could not onely tell the depth of the Sea in every place, but where there were shelves of Sand, Rocks, and other obstructions to be avoided by skilfull and experienced Sea-men: Besides, they were excel­lent Augurers, which skill they counted more neces­sary and beneficial then the use of Compasses, Cards, Watches, and the like; but above the rest, they had an extraordinary Art, much to be taken notice of by experimental Philosophers, and that was a certain En­gine, which would draw in a great quanty of air, and shoot forth wind with a great force; this Engine in a calm, they placed behind their ships, and in a storm, before; for it served against the raging waves, like Canons against an hostile Army, or besieged Town, it would batter and beat the waves in pieces, were they as high as steeples; and as soon as a breach was made, they forced their passage through, in spight even of the most furious wind, using two of those Engins at every Ship, one before, to beat off the waves, and another behind to drive it on; so that the artificial wind had the [Page 8] better of the natural; for it had a greater advantage of the waves then the natural of the ships; the natural be­ing above the face of the water, could not without a down-right motion enter or press into the ships; where­as the artificial with a sideward motion did pierce into the bowels of the waves: Moreover, it is to be obser­ved, that in a great tempest they would join their ships in battle array, and when they feared wind and waves would be too strong for them, if they divided their ships, they joined as many together as the compass or advantage of the places of the liquid Element would give them leave; for their ships were so ingeniously contrived, that they could fasten them together as close as a honey-comb without waste of place; and being thus united, no wind nor waves were able to separate them. The Emperors ships were all of Gold, but the Merchants and Skippers of Leather; the Golden ships were not much heavier then ours of Wood, by reason they were neatly made, and required not such thickness, neither were they troubled with Pitch, Tar, Pumps, Guns, and the like, which make our Wooden-ships very heavy; for though they were not all of a piece, yet they were so well sodder'd, that there was no fear of leaks, chinks, or clefts; and as for Guns, there was no use of them, because they had no other enemies but the winds; but the Leather ships were not altogether so sure, although much lighter; besides, they were pitched to keep out water.

[Page 9] Having thus prepared and order'd their Navy, they went on in despight of Calm or Storm, and though the Lady at first fancied her self in a very sad condition, and her mind was much tormented with doubts and fears, not knowing whether this strange adventure would tend to her safety or destruction; yet she being withal of a generous spirit, and ready wit, considering what dangers she had past, and finding those sorts of men civil and diligent attendants to her, took courage, and endeavoured to learn their language; which after she had obtained so far, that partly by some words and signs she was able to apprehend their meaning, she was so far from being afraid of them, that she thought her self not onely safe, but very happy in their company: By which we may see, that Novelty discomposes the mind, but acquaintance settles it in peace and tranquil­lity. At last, having passed by several rich Islands and Kingdoms, they went towards Paradise, which was the seat of the Emperor; and coming in sight of it, re­joyced very much; the Lady at first could perceive no­thing but high Rocks, which seemed to touch the Skies; and although they appear'd not of an equal heigth, yet they seemed to be all one piece, without partitions; but at last drawing nearer, she perceived a clift, which was a part of those Rocks, out of which she spied coming forth a great number of Boats, which afar off shewed like a company of Ants, marching one after another; the Boats appeared like the holes or [Page 10] partitions in a Honey-comb, and when joined together, stood as close; the men were of several complexions, but none like any of our World; and when both the Boats and Ships met, they saluted and spake to each o­ther very courteously; for there was but one language in all that world, nor no more but one Emperor, to whom they all submitted with the greatest duty and o­bedience, which made them live in a continued peace and happiness, not acquainted with other forreign wars, or home-bred insurrections. The Lady now being arrived at this place, was carried out of her Ship into one of those Boats, and conveighed through the same passage (for there was no other) into that part of the world where the Emperor did reside; which part was very pleasant, and of a mild temper: within it self it was divided by a great number of vast and large Ri­vers, all ebbing and flowing, into several Islands of un­equal distance from each other, which in most parts were as pleasant, healthful, rich, and fruitful, as Na­ture could make them; and, as I mentioned before, secure from all forreign invasions, by reason there was but one way to enter, and that like a Labyrinth, so winding and turning among the rocks, that no other Vessels but small Boats, could pass, carrying not above three passengers at a time: On each side all along this narrow and winding River, there were several Cities, some of Marble, some of Alabaster, some of Agat, some of Amber, some of Coral, and some of other [Page 11] precious materials not known in our world; all which after the Lady had passed, she came to the Imperial City, named Paradise, which appeared in form like several Islands; for Rivers did run betwixt every street, which together with the Bridges, whereof there was a great number, were all paved; the City it self was built of Gold, and their Architectures were noble, stately, and magnificent, not like our Modern, but like those in the Romans time; for our Modern Buildings are like those houses which Children use to make of Cards, one story above another, fitter for Birds, then Men; but theirs were more large, and broad, then high; the highest of them did not exceed two stories, besides those rooms that were under-ground, as Cel­lars, and other offices. The Emperors Palace stood upon an indifferent ascent from the Imperial City; at the top of which ascent was a broad Arch, supported by several Pillars, which went round the Palace, and contained four of our English miles in compass: upon the top of the Arch stood the Emperors Guard, which consisted of several sorts of men; at every half mile was a Gate to enter, and every Gate was of a different fashion; the first, which allowed a passage from the Imperial City into the Palace, had on either hand a Cloyster, the outward part whereof stood upon Ar­ches sustained by Pillars, but the inner part was close: Being entred through the Gate, the Palace it self ap­pear'd in its middle like the Isle of a Church, a mile and [Page 12] a half long, and half a mile broad; the roof of it was all arched, and rested upon Pillars, so artificially placed, that a stranger would lose himself therein without a Guide; at the extream sides, that is, between the outward and inward part of the Cloyster, were Lodgings for Attendants, and in the midst of the Palace, the Em­perors own rooms; whose lights were placed at the top of every one, because of the heat of the Sun: the Emperors appartement for State was no more inclosed then the rest; onely an Imperial Throne was in every appartement, of which the several adornments could not be perceived until one enter'd, because the Pillars were so just opposite to one another, that all the adorn­ments could not be seen at once. The first part of the Palace was, as the Imperial City, all of Gold, and when it came to the Emperors appartement, it was so rich with Diamonds, Pearls, Rubies, and the like pre­cious stones, that it surpasses my skill to enumerate them all. Amongst the rest, the Imperial Room of State appear'd most magnificent; it was paved with green Diamonds (for in that World are Diamonds of all colours) so artificially, as it seemed but of one piece; the Pillars were set with Diamonds so close, and in such a manner, that they appear'd most Glorious to the sight; between every Pillar was a bow or arch of a certain sort of Diamonds, the like whereof our World does not afford; which being placed in every one of the ar­ches in several rows, seemed just like so many Rain­bows [Page 13] of several different colours. The roof of the Arches was of blew Diamonds, and in the midst there­of was a Carbuncle, which represented the Sun; the ri­sing and setting Sun at the East and West side of the room were made of Rubies. Out of this room there was a passage into the Emperors Bed-chamber, the walls whereof were of Jet, and the floor of black Marble; the roof was of mother of Pearl, where the Moon and Blazing-stars were represented by white Diamonds, and his Bed was made of Diamonds and Carbuncles.

No sooner was the Lady brought before the Em­peror, but he conceived her to be some Goddess, and offered to worship her; which she refused, telling him, (for by that time she had pretty well learned their lan­guage) that although she came out of another world, yet was she but a mortal; at which the Emperor re­joycing, made her his Wife, and gave her an absolute power to rule and govern all that World as she plea­sed. But her subjects, who could hardly be per­swaded to believe her mortal, tender'd her all the ve­neration and worship due to a Deity.

Her accoustrement after she was made Empress, was as followeth: On her head she wore a Cap of Pearl, and a Half-moon of Diamonds just before it; on the top of her Crown came spreading over a broad Carbuncle, cut in the form of the Sun; her Coat was of Pearl, mixt with blew Diamonds, and fringed [Page 14] with red ones; her Buskins and Sandals were of green Diamonds: In her left hand she held a Buckler, to sig­nifie the Defence of her Dominions; which Buckler was made of that sort of Diamond as has several different Colours; and being cut and made in the form of an arch, shewed like a Rain-bow; In her right hand she carried a Spear made of a white Diamond, cut like the tail of a Blazing-star, which signified that she was ready to assault those that proved her Enemies.

None was allowed to use or wear Gold but those of the Imperial race, which were the onely Nobles of the State; nor durst any one wear Jewels but the Em­peror, the Empress, and their Eldest Son; notwith­standing that they had an infinite quantity both of Gold and precious Stones in that World; for they had larger extents of Gold, then our Arabian Sands; their pretious Stones were Rocks, and their Diamonds of several Colours; they used no coyn, but all their Traffick was by exchange of several Commodities.

Their Priests and Governours were Princes of the Imperial Blood, and made Eunuches for that pur­pose; and as for the ordinary sort of men in that part of the World where the Emperor resided, they were of several Complexions; not white, black, tawny, olive­or ash-coloured; but some appear'd of an Azure, some of a deep Purple, some of a Grass-green, some of a Scarlet, some of an Orange-colour, &c. Which Co­lours and Complexions, whether they were made by [Page 15] the bare reflection of light, without the assistance of small particles, or by the help of well-ranged and order'd Atomes; or by a continual agitation of little Globules; or by some pressing and reacting motion, I am not able to determine. The rest of the Inhabitants of that World, were men of several different sorts, shapes, figures, dis­positions, and humors, as I have already made mention heretofore; some were Bear-men, some Worm-men, some Fish- or Mear-men, otherwise called Syrenes; some Bird-men, some Fly-men, some Ant-men, some Geese-men, some Spider-men, some Lice-men, some Fox-men, some Ape-men, some Jack-daw-men, some Magpie-men, some Parrot-men, some Satyrs, some Gyants, and many more, which I cannot all remember; and of these several sorts of men, each followed such a profession as was most proper for the nature of their species, which the Empress encouraged them in, espe­cially those that had applied themselves to the study of several Arts and Sciences; for they were as ingenious and witty in the invention of profitable and useful Arts, as we are in our world, nay, more; and to that end she erected Schools, and founded several Societies. The Bear-men were to be her Experimental Philo­sophers, the Bird-men her Astronomers, the Fly­Worm-and Fish-men her Natural Philosophers, the Ape-men her Chymists, the Satyrs her Galenick Phy­sicians, the Fox-men her Polititians, the Spider- and Lice-men her Mathematicians, the Jackdaw-Magpie­and [Page 16] Parrot-men her Orators and Logicians, the Gy­ants her Architects, &c. But before all things, she having got a soveraign power from the Emperor over all the World, desired to be informed both of the man­ner of their Religion and Government, and to that end she called the Priests and States-men, to give her an account of either. Of the States-men she enquired, first, Why they had so few Laws? To which they answered, That many Laws made many Divisions, which most commonly did breed factions, and at last brake out into open wars. Next, she asked, Why they preferred the Monarchical form of Government before any other? They answered, That as it was natural for one body to have but one head, so it was also natural for a Politick body to have but one Gover­nor; and that a Common-wealth, which had many Governors was like a Monster of many heads: be­sides, said they, a Monarchy is a divine form of Go­vernment, and agrees most with our Religion; for as there is but one God, whom we all unanimously wor­ship and adore with one Faith, so we are resolved to have but one Emperor, to whom we all submit with one o­bedience.

Then the Empress seeing that the several sorts of her Subjects had each their Churches apart, asked the Priests whether they were of several Religions? They answered her Majesty, That there was no more but one Religion in all that World, nor no diversity of [Page 17] opinions in that same Religion; for though there were several sorts of men, yet had they all but one opinion concerning the Worship and Adoration of God. The Empress asked them, Whether they were Jews, Turks, or Christians? We do not know, said they, what Re­ligions those are; but we do all unanimously acknow­ledg, worship and adore the Onely, Omnipotent, and Eternal God, with all reverence, submission, and du­ty. Again, the Empress enquired, Whether they had several Forms of Worship? They answered, No: For our Devotion and Worship consists onely in Prayers, which we frame according to our several necessities, in Petitions, Humiliations, Thanksgi­ving, & c, Truly, replied the Empress, I thought you had been either Jews, or Turks, because I never perceived any Women in your Congregations; But what is the reason, you bar them from your religious Assemblies? It is not fit, said they, that Men and Women should be promiscuously together in time of Religious Worship; for their company hinders De­votion, and makes many, instead of praying to God, direct their devotion to their Mistresses. But, asked the Empress, Have they no Congregation of their own, to perform the duties of Divine Worship, as well as Men? No, answered they: but they stay at home, and say their Prayers by themselves in their Closets. Then the Empress desir'd to know the rea­son why the Priests and Governors of their World [Page 18] were made Eunuchs? They answer'd, To keep them from Marriage: For Women and Children most commonly make disturbance both in Church and State. But, said she, Women and Children have no employment in Church or State. 'Tis true, answer'd they; but although they are not admitted to publick employments, yet are they so prevalent with their Hus­bands and Parents, that many times by their importu­nate perswasions, they cause as much, nay, more mis­chief secretly, then if they had the management of publick affairs.

The Empress having received an information of what concerned both Church and State, passed some time in viewing the Imperial Palace, where she admi­red much the skil and ingenuity of the Architects, and enquired of them, first, why they built their Houses no higher then two stories from the Ground? They answered her Majesty, That the lower their buildings were, the less were they subject either to the heat of the Sun, to Wind, Tempest, Decay, &c. Then she desired to know the reason, why they made them so thick? They answered, That the thicker the Walls were, the warmer were they in Winter, and cooler in Summer, for their thickness kept out both cold and heat. Lastly, she asked, why they arched their roofs, and made so many Pillars? They replied, That Ar­ches and Pillars, did not onely grace a building very much, and caused it to appear Magnificent, but made it also firm and lasting.

[Page 19] The Empress was very well satisfied with their an­swers; and after some time, when she thought that her new founded societies of the Vertuoso's had made a good progress in their several employments, which she had put them upon, she caused a Convocation first of the Bird-men, and commanded them to give her a true relation of the two Celestial bodies, viz. the Sun and Moon, which they did with all the obedience and faith­fulness befitting their duty.

The Sun, as much as they could observe, they related to be a firm or solid Stone, of a vast bigness, of colour yellowish, and of an extraordi­nary splendor; but the Moon, they said, was of a whitish colour; and although she looked dim in the presence of the Sun, yet had she her own light, and was a shining body of her felf, as might be perceived by her vigorous appearance in Moon-shiny nights; the difference onely betwixt her own and the Suns light was, that the Sun did strike his beams in a direct line; but the Moon never respected the Centre of their World in a right line, but her Centre was always excentrical. The spots both in the Sun and Moon, as far as they were able to perceive, they affirmed to be nothing else but flaws and stains of their stony bodies. Concerning the heat of the Sun, they were not of one opinion; some would have the Sun hot in it self, alledging an old Tradition, that it should at some time break asunder, and burn the Heavens, and consume this world into [Page 20] hot embers, which, said they, could not be done, if the Sun were not fiery of it self. Others again said, This opinion could not stand with reason; for Fire being a destroyer of all things, the Sun-stone after this manner would burn up all the near adjoining bodies: besides, said they, Fire cannot subsist withoutfuel; and the Sun­stone having nothing to feed on, would in a short time consume it self; wherefore they thought it more probable that the Sun was not actually hot, but onely by the reflection of its light; so that its heat was an ef­fect of its light, both being immaterial: But this opi­nion again was laught at by others, and rejected as ri­diculous, who thought it impossible that one immate­rial should produce another; and believed that both the light and heat of the Sun proceeded from a swift Circular motion of the aethereal Globules, which by their striking upon the optick nerve, caused light, and their motion produced heat: But neither would this opinion hold; for, said some, then it would follow, that the sight of Animals is the cause of light, and that, were there no eyes, there would be no light; which was against all sense and reason. Thus they ar­gued concerning the heat and light of the Sun; but which is remarkable, none did say, that the Sun was a globous fluid body, and had a swift circular motion; but all agreed it was fixt and firm like a centre, and therefore they generally called it the Sun-stone.

[Page 21] Then the Emperess asked them the reason, Why the Sun and Moon did often appear in different postures or shapes, as sometimes magnified, sometimes dimi­nished, sometimes elevated, otherwhiles depressed, now thrown to the right, and then to the left? To which some of the Bird-men answered, That it proceeded from the various degrees of heat and cold, which are found in the air, from whence did follow a differing density and rarity; and likewise from the vapours that are interposed, whereof those that ascend are higher and less dense then the ambient air, but those which de­scend are heavier, and more dense. But others did with more probability affirm, that it was nothing else but the various patterns of the Air; for like as Painters do not copy out one and the same original just alike at all times, so, said they, do several parts of the Air make diffe­rent patterns of the luminous bodies of the Sun and Moon, which patterns, as several copies, the sensitive motions do figure out in the substance of our eyes.

This answer the Emperess liked much better then the former, and enquired further, what opinion they had of those Creatures that are called the motes of the Sun? To which they answered, That they were nothing else but streams of very small, rare and transparent par­ticles, through which the Sun was represented as through a glass; for if they were not transparent, said they, they would eclipse the light of the Sun; and if not rare and of an airy substance, they would hinder [Page 22] Flies from flying in the air, at least retard their flying motion: Nevertheless, although they were thinner then the thinnest vapour, yet were they not so thin as the body of air, or else they would not be perceptible by animal sight. Then the Emperess asked, Whether they were living Creatures? They answered, Yes: Because they did encrease and decrease, and were nou­rished by the presence, and starved by the absence of the Sun.

Having thus finished their discourse of the Sun and Moon, the Emperess desired to know what Stars there were besides? But they answer'd, that they could perceive in that World none other but Blazing-stars, and from thence it had the name that it was called the Blazing­world; and these Blazing-stars, said they, were such solid, firm and shining bodies as the Sun and Moon, not of a Globular, but of several sorts of figures, some had tails, and some other kinds of shapes.

After this, The Emperess asked them, What kind of substance or creature the Air was? The Bird-men an­swered, That they could have no other perception of the air, but by their own respiration: For, said they, some bodies are onely subject to touch, others onely to sight, and others onely to smell; but some are subject to none of our exterior senses: For Nature is so full of variety, that our weak senses cannot perceive all the various sorts of her Creatures; neither is there any one [Page 23] object perceptible by all our senses, no more then se­veral objects are by one sense. I believe you, replied the Empress; but if you can give no account of the Air, said she, you will hardly be able to inform me how Wind is made; for they say that Wind is nothing but motion of the Air. The Bird-men answer'd, That they observed Wind to be more dense then Air, and therefore subject to the sense of Touch; but what pro­perly Wind was, and the manner how it was made, they could not exactly tell; some said, it was cau­sed by the Clouds falling on each other, and others, that it was produced of a hot and dry exhalation, which ascending, was driven down again by the coldness of the air that is in the middle Region, and by reason of its lightness, could not go directly to the bottom, but was carried by the Air up and down: Some would have it a flowing water of the Air; and others again a flowing Air moved by the blas of the Stars.

But the Emperess seeing they could not agree con­cerning the cause of Wind, asked, whether they could tell how Snow was made? To which they answered, That according to their observation, Snow was made by a commixture of Water, and some certain extract of the element of Fire that is under the Moon; a small portion of which extract being mixed with Water, and beaten by Air or Wind, made a white froth called Snow, which being after some while dissolved by the heat of the same spirit, turned to Water again. This [Page 24] observation amazed the Emperess very much; for she had hitherto believed, That Snow was made by cold motions, and not by such an agitation or beating of a fiery extract upon water: Nor could she be perswaded to believe it until the Fish-or Mear-men had delivered their observation upon the making of Ice, which, they said, was not produced, as some had hitherto con­ceived, by the motion of the Air, raking the Super­ficies of the Earth, but by some strong saline vapour arising out of the Seas, which condensed Water into Ice; and the more quantity there was of that vapour, the greater were the Mountains or Precipices of Ice; but the reason that it did not so much freeze in the Tor­rid Zone, or under the Ecliptick, as near or under the Poles, was, that this vapour in those places being drawn up by the Sun-beams into the middle Region of the Air, was onely condensed into water, and fell down in showres of rain; when as, under the Poles, the heat of the Sun being not so vehement, the same va­pour had no force or power to rise so high, and there­fore caused so much Ice, by ascending and acting onely upon the surface of water.

This Relation confirmed partly the observation of the Bird-men concerning the cause of Snow; but since they had made mention that that same extract, which by its commixture with Water made Snow, proceeded from the Element of Fire, that is under the Moon; The Emperess asked them of what nature that Elemen­tary [Page 25] Fire was; whether it was like ordinary fire here upon Earth, or such a fire as is within the bowels of the Earth, and as the famous mountains Vesuvius and AEtna do burn withal, or whether it was such a sort of fire as is found in flints, &c. They answered, That the Elementary Fire, which is underneath the Sun, was not so solid as any of those mentioned fires; be­cause it had no solid fuel to feed on; but yet it was much like the flame of ordinary fire, onely some­what more thin and fluid; for flame, said they, is no­thing else but the airy part of a fired body.

Lastly, the Emperess asked the Bird-men of the na­ture of Thunder and Lightning? and whether it was not caused by roves of Ice falling upon each other? To which they answered, That it was not made that way, but by an encounter of cold and heat; so that an ex­halation being kindled in the Clouds, did dash forth Lightning, and that there were so many rentings of Clouds as there were founds and Cracking noises: But this opinion was contradicted by others, who af­firmed that Thunder was a sudden and monstrous blas, stirred up in the Air, and did not always re­quire a Cloud; but the Emperess not knowing what they meant by blas (for even they themselves were not able to explain the sense of this word) liked the for­mer better; and to avoid hereafter tedious disputes, and have the truth of the Phaenomena's of Celestial bo­dies more exactly known, commanded the Bear-men; [Page 28] and will never lead you to the knowledg of Truth; Wherefore I command you again to break them; for you may observe the progressive motions of Celestial bodies with your natural eyes better then through Ar­tificial Glasses. The Bear-men being exceedingly troubled at her Majesties displeasure concerning their Telescopes, kneel'd down, and in the humblest man­ner petitioned that they might not be broken; for, said they, we take more delight in Artificial delusions, then in natural truths. Besides, we shall want imployments for our senses, and subjects for arguments; for were there nothing but truth, and no falshood, there would be no occasion for to dispute, and by this means we should want the aim and pleasure of our endeavours in consuting and contradicting each other; neither would one man be thought wiser then another, but all would either be alike knowing and wise, or all would be fools; wherefore we most humbly beseech your Imperial Ma­jesty to spare our Glasses, which are our onely delight, and as dear to us as our lives. The Emperess at last consented to their request, but upon condition, that their disputes and quarrels should remain within their Schools, and cause no factions or disturbances in State, or Government. The Bear-men, full of joy, re­turned their most humble thanks to the Emperess; and to make her amends for the displeasure which their Te­lescopes had occasioned, told her Majesty, that they had several other artificial Optick-glasses, which they [Page 29] were sure would give her Majesty a great deal more satisfaction. Amongst the rest they brought forth several Microscopes, by the means of which they could enlarge the shapes of little bodies, and make a Lowse appear as big as an Elephant, and a Mite as big as a Whale. First of all they shewed the Emperess a gray Drone-flye, wherein they observed that the great­est part of her face, nay, of her head, consisted of two large bunches all cover'd over with a multitude of small Pearls or Hemispheres in a Trigonal order, which Pearls were of two degrees, smaller and bigger; the smaller degree was lowermost, and looked towards the ground; the other was upward, and looked side­ward, forward and and backward: They were all so smooth and polished, that they were able to represent the image of any object, the number of them was in all 14000. After the view of this strange and miracu­lous Creature, and their several observations upon it, the Emperess asked them what they judged those little Hemispheres might be? They answered, That each of them was a perfect eye, by reason they perceived that each was covered with a Transparent Cornea, containing a liquor within them, which resembled the watery or glassie humor of the Eye. To which the Em­peress replied, That they might be glassie Pearls, and yet not eyes, and that perhaps their Microscopes did not truly inform them: But they smilingly answered her Majesty, That she did not know the vertue of [Page 30] those Microscopes; for they did never delude, but re­ctifie and inform their senses; nay, the World, said they, would be but blind without them, as it has been in former ages before those Microscopes were in­vented.

After this, they took a Charcoal, and viewing it with one of their best Microscopes, discovered in it an infinite multitude of pores, some bigger, some less; so close and thick, that they left but very little space be­twixt them to be filled with a solid body; and to give her Imperial Majesty a better assurance thereof, they counted in a line of them an inch long, no less then 2700 pores; from which observation they drew this following conclusion, to wit, that this multitude of pores was the cause of the blackness of the Coal; for, said they, a body that has so many pores, from each of which no light is reflected, must necessarily look black, since black is nothing else but a privation of light, or a want of reflection. But the Emperess replied, That if all colours were made by reflection of light, and that black was as much a colour as any other colour; then certainly they contradicted themselves in saying, that black was made by want of reflection. However, not to interrupt your Microscopical inspections, said she, let us see how Vegetables appear through your Glasses; whereupon they took a Nettle, and by the vertue of the Microscope, discovered that underneath the points of the Nettle there were certain little bags or [Page 31] bladders, containing a poysonous liquor, and when the points had made way into the interior parts of the skin, they like Syringe-pipes served to conveigh that same liquor into them. To which observation the Emperess replied, That if there were such poyson in Nettles, then certainly in eating of them, they would hurt us inwardly, as much as they do outwardly? But they answered, That it belonged to Physicians more then to Experimental Philosophers, to give rea­sons hereof; for they onely made Microscopial inspecti­ons, and related the figures of the natural parts of Crea­tures according to the presentation of their glasses.

Lastly, They shewed the Emperess a Flea, and a Lowse; which Creatures through the Microscope appear'd so terrible to her sight, that they had almost put her into a swoon; the description of all their parts would be very tedious to relate, and therefore I'le for­bear it at this present. The Emperess after the view of those strangely-shaped Creatures, pitied much those that are molested with them, especially poor Beggars, which although they have nothing to live on them­selves, are yet necessitated to maintain and feed of their own flesh and blood, a company of such terrible Crea­tures called Lice, who instead of thanks, do reward them with pains, and torment them for giving them nourishment and food. But after the Emperess had seen the shapes of these monstrous Creatures, she desir'd to know whether their Microscopes could [Page 32] hinder their biting, or at least shew some means how to avoid them? To which they answered, That such Arts were mechanical and below that noble study of Microscopical observations. Then the Emperess asked them whether they had not such sorts of Glasses that could enlarge and magnifie the shapes of great bodies, as well as they had done of little ones? Whereupon they took one of their best and largest Microscopes, and endeavoured to view a Whale thorow it; but alas! the shape of the Whale was so big, that its circumfe­rence went beyond the magnifying quality of the Glass; whether the error proceeded from the Glass, or from a wrong position of the Whale against the reflection of light, I cannot certainly tell. The Emperess seeing the insufficiency of those Magnifying-glasses, that they were not able to enlarge all sorts of objects, asked the Bear-men whether they could not make glasses of a contrary nature to those they had shewed her, to wit, such as instead of enlarging or magnifying the shape or figure of an object, could contract it beneath its natu­ral proportion: Which, in obedience to her Majesties Commands, they did; and viewing through one of the best of them, a huge and mighty Whale ap­pear'd no bigger then a Sprat; nay, through some no bigger then a Vinegar-Eele; and through their ordi­nary ones, an Elephant seemed no bigger then a Flea; a Camel no bigger then a Lowse; and an Ostrich no bigger then a Mite. To relate all their optick obser­vations [Page 33] through the several sorts of their Glasses, would be a tedious work, and tire even the most patient Rea­der, wherefore I'le pass them by; onely this was very remarkable and worthy to be taken notice of, that not­withstanding their great skil, industry and ingenuity in Experimental Philosophy, they could yet by no means contrive such Glasses, by the help of which they could spy out a Vacuum, with all its dimensions, nor Imma­terial substances, Non-beings, and Mixt-beings, or such as are between something and nothing; which they were very much troubled at, hoping that yet, in time, by long study and practice, they might perhaps attain to it.

The Bird-and Bear-men being dismissed, the Em­peress called both the Syrenes, or Fish-men, and the Worm-men, to deliver their observations which they had made, both within the Seas, and the Earth. First she enquired of the Fish-men whence the saltness of the Sea did proceed? To which they answered, That there was a volatile salt in those parts of the Earth, which as a bosom contain the Waters of the Sea, which salt being imbibed by the Sea, became fixt; and this imbibing motion was that they call'd the Ebbing and Flowing of the Sea; for, said they, the rising and swel­ling of the water, is caused by those parts of the volatile salt as are not so easily imbibed, which striving to ascend above the water, bear it up with such a motion, as Man, or some other animal Creature, in a violent [Page 36] certainly those may be said to be of such a mixt nature, that is, partly flesh, and partly fish: But how is it possible, replied the Emperess, that they should live both in Water, and on the Earth, since those Animals that live by the respiration of air, cannot live within Water, and those that live in Water, cannot live by the respiration of Air, as experience doth sufficiently wit­ness. They answered her Majesty, That as there were different sorts of Creatures, so they had also different ways of respirations; for respiration, said they, was nothing else but a composition and division of parts, and the motions of nature being infinitely various, it was impossible that all Creatures should have the like mo­tions; wherefore it was not necessary, that all animal Creatures should be bound to live either by the air, or by water onely, but according as Nature had ordered it convenient to their species. The Emperess seem'd very well satisfied with their answer, and desired to be further informed, Whether all animal Creatures did con­tinue their species by a successive propagation of parti­culars, and whether in every species the off-spring did always resemble their Generator or Producer, both in their interior and exterior figures? They answered her Majesty, That some species or sorts of Creatures, were kept up by a successive propagation of an off­spring that was like the producer, but some were not; of the first rank, said they, are all those animals that are of different sexes, besides several others; but of the [Page 37] second rank are for the most part those we call insects, whose production proceds from such causes as have no conformity or likeness with their produced effects; as for example, Maggots bred out of Cheese, and se­veral others generated out of Earth, Water, and the like. But said the Emperess, there is some likeness between Maggots and Cheese, for Cheese has no blood, and so neither have Maggots; besides, they have almost the same taste which Cheese has. This proves nothing, answered they; for Maggots have a visible, local, progressive motion, which Cheese hath not. The Emperess replied, That when all the Cheese was turned into Maggots, it might be said to have local, progressive motion. They answered, That when the Cheese by its own figurative motions was changed into Maggots, it was no more Cheese. The Emperess confessed that she observed Nature was in­finitely various in her works, and that though the spe­cies of Creatures did continue, yet their particulars were subject to infinite changes. But since you have informed me, said she, of the various sorts and pro­ductions of animal Creatures, I desire you to tell me what you have observed of their sensitive perceptions? Truly, answered they, Your Majesty puts a very hard question to us, and we shall hardly be able to give a satisfactory answer to it; for there are many different sorts of Creatures, which as they have all different perceptions, so they have also different organs, which [Page 38] our senses are not able to discover, onely in an Oyster­shell we have with admiration observed, that the com­mon sensorium of the Oyster lies just at the closing of the shells, where the pressure and reaction may be perceived by the opening and shutting of the shells every tide.

After all this, the Emperess desired the Worm-men to give her a true Relation how frost was made upon the Earth? To which they answered, That it was made much after the manner and description of the Fish- and Bird-men, concerning the Congelation of Water into Ice and Snow, by a commixture of saline and acid particles; which relation added a great light to the Ape-men, who were the Chymists, concerning their Chymical principles, Salt, Sulphur and Mercury. But, said the Emperess, if it be so, it will require an infinite multitude of saline particles to produce such a great quantity of Ice, Frost and Snow: besides, said she, when Snow, Ice and Frost, turn again into their former principle, I would fain know what becomes of those saline particles? But neither the Wor-men, nor the Fish-and Bird-men, could give her an answer to it.

Then the Emperess enquired of them the reason, Why Springs were not as salt as the Sea is? also, why Springs did ebb and flow? To which some answered, That the ebbing and flowing of some Springs was cau­sed by hollow Caverns within the Earth, where the Sea­water crowding thorow, did thrust forward, and draw back-ward the Spring-water, according to its own way of [Page 39] ebbing and flowing; but others said, That it proceed­ed from a small proportion of saline and acid particles, which the Spring-water imbibed from the Earth; and although it was not so much as to be perceived by the sense of Taste, yet was it enough to cause an eb­bing and flowing motion. And as for the Spring­water being fresh, they gave, according to their obser­vation, this following reason: There is, said they, a cer­tain heat within the bowels of the Earth, proceeding from its swift circular motion upon its own axe, which heat distills the rarest parts of the Earth into a fresh and insipid water, which water being through the pores of the Earth, conveighed into a place where it may break forth without resistance or obstruction, causes Springs and Fountains; and these distilled waters within the Earth do nourish and refresh the grosser and dryer parts thereof. This Relation confirmed the Emperess in the opinion concerning the motion of the Earth, and the fixedness of the Sun, as the Bird-men had informed her; and then she asked the Worm-men, whether Minerals and Vegetables were generated by the same heat that is within the bowels of the Earth? To which they could give her no positive answer; onely, this they affirmed, That heat and cold were not the primary producing causes of either Vegetables or Mi­nerals, or other sorts of Creatures, but onely effects; and to prove this our assertion, said they, we have ob­served, that by change of some sorts of corporeal mo­tions, [Page 40] that which is now hot, will become cold; and what is now cold, will grow hot; but the hottest place of all, we find to be the Center of the Earth: Nei­ther do we observe, that the torrid Zone does contain so much Gold and Silver as the Temperate; nor is there great store of Iron and Lead wheresoever there is Gold; for these metals are most found in colder climates to­wards either of the Poles. This observation, the Emperess commanded them to confer with her Chy­mists, the Ape-men, to let them know that Gold was not produced by a violent, but a temperate degree of heat. She asked further, Whether Gold could not be made by Art? They answered, That they could not certainly tell her Majesty, but if it was possible to be done, they thought Tin, Lead, Brass, Iron and Silver, to be the fittest metals for such an Artificial transmutation. Then she asked them, Whether Art could produce Iron, Tin, Lead, or Silver? They answered, not, in their opinion. Then I perceive, re­plied the Emperess, that your judgments are very irre­gular, since you believe that Gold, which is so fixt a metal, that nothing has been found as yet which could occasion a dissolution of its interior figure, may be made by Art, and not Tin, Lead, Iron, Copper or Silver, which yet are so far weaker, and meaner metals then Gold is. But the Worm-men excused them­selves, that they were ignorant in that Art, and that such questions belonged more properly to [Page 41] the Ape-men, which were Her Majesties Chy­mists.

Then the Emperess asked them, Whether by their sensitive perceptions they could observe the interior corporeal, figurative motions both of Vegetables and Minerals? They answer'd, That their senses could perceive them after they were produced, but not be­fore; Nevertheless, said they, although the interior, figurative motions of natural Creatures are not subject to the exterior, animal, sensitive perceptions, yet by their rational perception they may judg of them, and of their productions if they be regular: Whereupon the Emperess commanded the Bear-men to lend them some of their best Microscopes; at which the Bear­men smilingly answered her Majesty, that their Glas­ses would do them but little service in the bowels of the Earth, because there was no light; for, said they, our Glasses do onely represent exterior objects, according to the various reflections and positions of light; and wheresoever light is wanting, the glasses wil do no good. To which the Worm-men replied, that although they could not say much of refractions, reflections, in­flections, and the like; yet were they not blind, even in the bowels of the Earth; for they could see the several sorts of Minerals, as also minute Animals, that lived there, which minute animal Creatures were not blind neither, but had some kind of sensitive perception that was as serviceable to them, as sight, taste, smell, touch, [Page 42] hearing, & c. was to other animal Creatures: By which it is evident, That Nature has been as bountiful to those Creatures that live under ground, or in the bowels of the Earth, as to those that live upon the surface of the Earth, or in the Air, or in Water. But howsoever, proceeded the Worm-men, although there is light in the bowels of the Earth, yet your Microscopes will do but little good there, by reason those Creatures that live under ground have not such an optick sense as those that live on the surface of the Earth: wherefore, unless you had such glasses as are proper for their perception, your Microscopes will not be any ways advantagious to them. The Emperess seem'd well pleased with this answer of the Worm-men; and asked them further, whether Minerals and all other Creatures within the Earth, were colourless? At which question they could not forbear laughing; and when the Emperess asked the reason why they laught; We most humbly beg your Majesties pardon, replied they; for we could not chuse but laugh, when we heard of a colour­less body. Why, said the Emperess, colour is onely an accident, which is an immaterial thing, and has no being of it self, but in an other body. Those, re­plied they, that informed your Majesty thus, surely their rational motions were very irregular; For how is it possible, that a natural nothing can have a being in Nature? If it be no substance, it cannot have a being, and if no being, it is nothing; Wherefore the distin­ction [Page 43] between subsisting of it self, and subsisting in a­nother body, is a meer nicety, and non-sense; for there is nothing in Nature that can subsist of, or by it self, (I mean singly) by reason all parts of Nature are com­posed in one body, and though they may be infinitely divided, commixed and changed in their particulars, yet in general, parts cannot be separated from parts as long as Nature lasts; nay, we might as probably af­firm, that Infinite Nature would be as soon destroyed, as that one Atome could perish; and therefore your Majesty may firmly believe, that there is no body with­out colour, nor no colour without body; for colour, figure, place, magnitude and body, are all but one thing, without any separation or abstraction from each other.

The Emperess was so wonderfully taken with this discourse of the Worm-men, that she not onely par­doned the rudeness they committed in laughing at first at her question, but yielded a full assent to their opi­nion, which she thought the most rational that ever she had heard yet; and then proceeding in her questions, en­quired further, whether they had observed any seminal principles within the Earth free from all dimensions and qualities, which produced Vegetables, Minerals, and the like? To which they answered, That con­cerning the seeds of Minerals, their sensitive percepti­ons had never observed any; but Vegetables had cer­tain seeds out of which they were produced. Then [Page 44] she asked, whether those seeds of Vegetables lost their species; that is, were annihilated in the production of their off-spring? To which they answered, That by an annihilation, nothing could be produced, and that the seeds of Vegetables were so far from being annihi­lated in their productions, that they did rather nume­rously increase and multiply; for the division of one seed, said they, does produce numbers of seeds out of it self. But replied the Empress, A particular part cannot in­crease of it self. 'Tis true, answer'd they: but they increase not barely of themselves, but by joining and commix­ing with other parts, which do assist them in their pro­ductions, and by way of imitation form or figure their own parts into such or such particulars. Then, I pray inform me, said the Emperess, what disguise those seeds put on, and how they do conceal themselves in their transmutations? They answered, That seeds did no ways disguise or conceal, but rather divulge themselves in the multiplication of their off-spring; onely they did hide and conceal themselves from their sensitive perceptions so, that their figurative and pro­ductive motions were not perceptible by animal Crea­tures. Again, the Emperess asked them, whether there were any Non-beings within the Earth? To which they answered, That they never heard of any such thing; and that, if her Majesty would know the truth thereof, she must ask those Creatures that are called Im­material Spirits, which had a great affinity with Non­beings, [Page 45] and perhaps could give her a satisfactory answer to this question. Then she desired to be informed, what opinion they had of the beginning of forms? They told her Majesty, That they did not understand what she meant by this expression; For, said they, there is no beginning in Nature, no not of Particulars, by reason Nature is Eternal and Infinite, and her parti­culars are subject to infinite changes and transmutations by vertue of their own corporeal, figurative self-mo­tions; so that there's nothing new in Nature, nor pro­perly a beginning of any thing. The Emperess seem'd well satisfied with all those answers, and inquired fur­ther, whether there was no Art used by those Crea­tures that live within the Earth? Yes, answered they: for the several parts of the Earth do join and assist each other in composition or framing of such or such parti­culars; and many times, there are factions and divi­sions, which cause productions of mixt species's; as for example, weeds, instead of sweet flowers and useful fruits; but Gardeners and Husbandmen use often to decide their quarrels, and cause them to agree; which though it shews a kindness to the differing parties, yet 'tis a great prejudice to the Worms, and other animal Creatures that live under ground; for it most com­monly causes their dissolution and ruine, at best they are driven out of their habitations. What, said the Emperess, are not Worms produced out of the Earth? Their production in general, answered they, is like [Page 46] the production of all other natural Creatures, pro­ceeding from the corporeal figurative motions of Na­ture; but as for their particular productions, they are according to the nature of their species; some are produced out of flowers, some out of roots, some out of fruits, some out of ordinary Earth. Then they are very ungrateful Children, replied the Emperess, that they feed on their own Parents which gave them life. Their life, answered they, is their own, and not their Parents; for no part or creature of Nature can either give or take away life, but parts do onely assist and join with parts, either in the dissolution or production of o­ther parts and Creatures.

After this, and several other Conferences, which the Emperess held with the Worm-men, she dismissed them; and having taken much satisfaction in several of their answers, encouraged them in their studies and observations. Then she made a convocation of her Chymists, the Ape-men, and commanded them to give her an account of the several Transmutations which their Art was able to produce. They begun first with a long and tedious discourse concerning the Primitive Ingredients of Natural bodies, and how, by their Art, they had found out the principles out of which they consist. But they did not all agree in their opinions; for some said, That the Principles of all natural bodies were the four Elements, Fire, Air, Water, Earth, out of which they were composed: Others rejected [Page 47] this Elementary commixture, and said, There were many bodies out of which none of the four Elements could be extracted by any degree of Fire whatsoever; and that, on the other side, there were divers bo­dies, whose resolution by fire reduced them into more then four different ingredients; and these affirmed, that the onely principles of natural bodies were Salt, Sulphur, and Mercury: Others again declared, That none of the forementioned could be called the True principles of natural bodies, but that by their industry and pains which they had taken in the Art of Chymi­stry, they had discovered, that all natural bodies were produced but from one Principle, which was Water; for all Vegetables, Minerals and Animals, said they, are nothing else, but simple water distinguished into various figures by the vertue of their seeds. But after a great many debates and contentions about this sub­ject, the Emperess being so much tired that she was not able to hear them any longer, imposed a general silence upon them, and then declared her self in this following discourse:

I am too sensible of the pains you have taken in the Art of Chymistry, to discover the principles of natural bodies, and wish they had been more profita­bly bestowed upon some other, then such experi­ments; for both by my own contemplation, and the ob­servations which I have made by my rational and sensi­tive perception upon Nature, and her works, I find, [Page 48] that Nature is but one Infinite self-moving body, which by the vertue of its self-motion, is divided into infinite parts, which parts being restless, undergo perpetual changes and transmutations by their infinite compositions and divisions. Now, if this be so, as surely, according to regular sense and reason, it ap­pears no otherwise; it is in vain to look for primary ingredients, or constitutive principles of natural bo­dies, since there is no more but one Universal prin­ciple of Nature, to wit, self-moving Matter, which is the onely cause of all natural effects. Next, I de­sire you to consider, that Fire is but a particular Crea­ture, or effect of Nature, and occasions not onely different effects in several bodies, but on some bodies has no power at all; witness Gold, which never could be brought yet to change its interior figure by the art of Fire; and if this be so, Why should you be so simple as to believe that fire can shew you the prin­ciples of Nature? and that either the four Elements, or Water onely, or Salt, Sulphur and Mercury, all which are no more but particular effects and Crea­tures of Nature, should be the Primitive ingredients or Principles of all natural bodies? Wherefore, I will not have you to take more pains, and waste your time in such fruitless attempts, but be wiser hereafter; and busie your selves with such Experiments as may be beneficial to the publick.

[Page 49] The Emperess having thus declared her mind to the Ape-men, and given them better Instructions then perhaps they expected, not knowing that her Majesty had such great and able judgment in Natural Philosophv, had several conferences with them con­cerning Chymical Preparations, which for brevities sake, I'le forbear to rehearse: Amongst the rest, she asked, how it came, that the Imperial Race appear'd so young, and yet was reported to have lived so long; some of them two, some three, and some four hundred years? and whether it was by Nature, or a special Divine blessing? To which they answered, That there was a certain Rock in the parts of that World, which con­tained the Golden Sands, which Rock was hollow within, and did produce a Gum that was a hundred years before it came to its full strength and perfection; this Gum, said they, if it be held in a warm hand, will dissolve into an Oyl, the effects whereof are follow­ing: It being given every day for some certain time to an old decayed man, in the bigness of a little Pea, will first make him spit for a week, or more; after this, it will cause Vomits of Flegm, and after that it will bring forth by vomits, humors of several colours; first of a pale yellow, then of a deep yellow, then of a green, and lastly of a black colour; and each of these humors have a several taste, some are fresh, some salt, some sower, some bitter, and so forth; neither do all these Vomits make them sick, but they come out on a sudden and [Page 50] unawares, without any pain or trouble to the patient: And after it hath done all these mentioned effects, and clear'd both the stomack and several other parts of the body, then. it works upon the brain, and brings forth of the nose such kind of humors as it did out of the mouth, and much after the same manner; then it will purge by stool, then by urine, then by sweat, and lastly by bleeding at the nose, and the Emerodes; all which effects it will perform within the space of six weeks, or a little more; for it does not work very strong­ly, but gently, and by degrees: Lastly, when it has done all this, it will make the body break out into a thick scab, and cause both Hair, Teeth and Nails to come off; which scab being arrived to its full maturity, opens first along the back, and comes off all in a piece like an armour, and all this is done within the space of four months. After this the Patient is wrapt into a sear­cloth, prepared of certain Gums and Juices, wherein he continues until the time of nine Months be expired from the first beginning of the cure, which is the time of a Childs formation in the womb. In the mean while his diet is nothing else but Eagles-eggs, and Hinds-milk; and after the Sear-cloth is taken away, he will appear of the age of Twenty, both in shape, and strength. The weaker sort of this Gum is soveraign in healing of wounds, and curing of slight distempers. But this is also to be observed, that none of the Impe­rial race does use any other drink but Lime-water, or [Page 51] water in which Lime-stone is immerged; their meat is nothing else but Fowl of several sorts, their recreations are many, but chiefly Hunting.

This Relation amazed the Emperess very much; for though in the world she came from, she had heard great reports of the Philosophers-stone, yet had she not heard of any that had ever found it out, which made her believe that it was but a Chymera; she cal­led also to mind, that there had been in the same world a man who had a little Stone which cured all kinds of Diseases outward and inward, according as it was ap­plied; and that a famous Chymist had found out a cer­tain liquor called Alkahest, which by the vertue of its own fire, consumed all diseases; but she had never heard of a Medicine that could renew old Age, and render it beautiful, vigorous and strong: Nor would she have so easily believed it, had it been a medicine prepared by Art; for she knew that Art, being Na­tures Changeling, was not able to produce such a pow­erful effect, but being that the Gum did grow natu­rally, she did not so much scruple at it; for she knew that Natures Works are so various and wonderful, that no particular Creature is able to trace her ways.

The Conferences of the Chymists being finished, the Emperess made an Assembly of her Galenical Phy­sicians, her Herbalists and Anatomists; and first she enquired of her Herbalists the particular effects of seve­ral Herbs and Drugs, and whence they proceeded? [Page 52] To which they answered, that they could, for the most part, tell her Majesty the vertues and operations of them, but the particular causes of their effects were un­known; onely thus much they could say, that their o­perations and vertues were generally caused by their proper inherent, corporeal, figurative motions, which being infinitely various in Infinite Nature, did produce infinite several effects. And it is observed, said they, that Herbs and Drugs are as wise in their operations, as Men in their words and actions; nay, wiser; and their effects are more certain then Men in their opinions; for though they cannot discourse like Men, yet have they sense and reason, as well as Men; for the discursive fa­culty is but a particular effect of sense and reason in some particular Creatures, to wit, Men, and not a prin­ciple of Nature, and argues often more folly then wis­dom. The Emperess asked, Whether they could not by a composition and commixture of other Drugs, make them work other effects then they did, used by themselves? They answered, That they could make them produce artificial effects, but not alter their inherent, proper and particular natures.

Then the Emperess commanded her Anatomists to dissect such kinds of Creatures as are called Monsters. But they answered her Majesty, That it would be but an unprofitable and useless work, and hinder their bet­ter imployments; for when we dissect dead Animals, said they, it is for no other end, but to observe what [Page 53] defects or distempers they had, that we may cure the like in living ones, so that all our care and industry concerns onely the preservation of Mankind; but we hope your Majesty will not preserve Monsters, which are most commonly destroyed, except it be for no­velty; neither will the dissection of Monsters prevent the errors of Natures irregular actions; for by dissect­ing some, we cannot prevent the production of o­thers; so that our pains and labour will be to no pur­pose, unless to satisfie the vain curiosities of inquisitive men. The Emperess replied, That such dissections would be very beneficial to Experimental Philoso­phers. If Experimental Philosophers, answer'd they, do spend their time in such useless inspections, they waste it in vain, and have nothing but their labour for their pains.

Lastly, her Majesty had some Conferences with the Galenick Physicians about several Diseases, and amongst the rest, desired to know the cause and nature of Apoplexy, and the spotted Plague. They an­swered, That a deadly Apoplexy was a dead palsie of the brain, and the spotted Plague was a Gangrene of the Vital parts, and as the Gangrene of outward parts did strike inwardly; so the Gangrene of inward parts, did break forth outwardly; which is the cause, said they, that as soon as the spots appear, death follows; for then it is an infallible sign, that the body is through­out infected with a Gangrene, which is a spreading [Page 54] evil; but some Gangrenes do spread more suddenly then others, and of all sorts of Gangrenes, the Plaguy­gangrene is the most infectious; for other Gangrenes infect but the next adjoining parts of one particular body, and having killed that same Creature, go no further, but cease; when as, the Gangrene of the Plague, in­fects not onely the adjoining parts of one particular Creature, but also those that are distant; that is, one particular body infects another, and so breeds a Uni­versal Contagion. But the Emperess being very de­sirous to know in what manner the Plague was propa­gated and became so contagious, asked, Whether it went actually out of one body into another? To which they answered, That it was a great dispute a­mongst the Learned of their profession, whether it came by a division and composition of parts; that is, by expiration and inspiration; or whether it was cau­sed by imitation: Some Experimental Philosophers, said they, will make us believe, that by the help of their Microscopes, they have observed the Plague to be a body of little Flyes like Atomes, which go out of one body into another, through the sensitive passages; but the most experienced and wisest of our society, have rejected this opinion as a ridiculous fancy, and do for the most part believe, that it is caused by an imitation of Parts, so that the motions of some parts which are sound, do imitate the motions of those that are infected, and that by this means, the Plague becomes contagious and spreading.

[Page 55] The Emperess having hitherto spent her time in the Examination of the Bird- Fish- Worm- and Ape­men, &c. and received several Intelligences from their several imployments; at last had a mind to divert her self after her serious discourses, and therefore she sent for the Spider-men, which were her Mathematicians, the Lice-men which were her Geometricians, and the Magpie- Parrot- and Jackdaw-men, which were her Orators and Logicians. The Spider-men came first, and presented her Majesty with a table full of Mathe­tical points, lines and figures of all sorts of squares, circles, triangles, and the like; which the Emperess, notwithstanding that she had a very ready wit, and quick apprehension, could not understand; but the more she endeavoured to learn, the more was she con­founded: Whether they did ever square the circle, I cannot exactly tell, nor whether they could make imaginary points and lines; but this I dare say, That their points and lines were so slender, small and thin, that they seem'd next to Imaginary. The Mathema­ticians were in great esteem with the Emperess, as be­ing not onely the chief Tutors and Instructors in many Arts, but some of them excellent Magicians and In­formers of Spirits, which was the reason their Cha­racters were so abstruse and intricate, that the Empe­ress knew not what to make of them. There is so much to learn in your Art, said she, that I can neither spare time from other affairs to busie my self in your [Page 56] profession; nor, if I could, do I think I should ever be able to understand your Imaginary points, lines and fi­gures, because they are Non-beings.

Then came the Lice-men, and endeavoured to measure all things to a hairs breadth, and weigh them to an Atome; but their weights would seldom agree, especially in the weighing of Air, which they found a task impossible to be done; at which the Emperess be­gan to be displeased, and told them, that there was neither Truth nor Justice in their Profession; and so dissolved their society.

After this the Emperess was resolved to hear the Magpie- Parrot- and Jackdaw-men, which were her professed Orators and Logicians; whereupon one of the Parrot-men rose with great formality, and endea­voured to make an Eloquent Speech before her Ma­jesty; but before he had half ended, his arguments and divisions being so many, that they caused a great con­fusion in his brain, he could not go forward, but was forced to retire backward, with the greatest disgrace both to himself, and the whole society; and although one of his brethen endeavoured to second him by ano­ther speech, yet was he as far to seek as the former. At which the Emperess appear'd not a little troubled, and told them, That they followed too much the Rules of Art, and confunded themselves with too nice forma­lities and distinctions; but since I know, said she, that you are a people who have naturally voluble tongues, [Page 57] and good memories; I desire you to consider more the subject you speak of, then your artificial periods, con­nexions and parts of speech, and leave the rest to your natural Eloquence; which they did, and so became very eminent Orators.

Lastly, her Imperial Majesty being desirous to know, what progress her Logicians had made in the Art of disputing, Commanded them to argue upon several Themes or sujects; which they did; and having made a very nice discourse of Logistical terms and propositions, entered into a dispute by way of Syllogistical Argu­ments, through all the Figures and Modes: One be­gan with an argment of the first mode of the first figure, thus:

Every Politician is wise:
Every Knave is a Politician,
Therefore every Knave is wise.

Another contradicted him with a Syllogism of the second mode of the same figure, thus:

No Politician is wise:
Every Knave is a Politician,
Therefore no Knave is wise.

The third made an Argument in the third Mode of the same figure, after this manner:

Every Politician is wise:
Some Knaves are Politicians,
Therefore some Knaves are wise.

[Page 58] The Fourth concluded with a Syllogism in the fourth Mode of the same figure, thus:

No Politician is wise:
Some Knaves are Polticians,
Therefore some Knaves are not wise.

After this they took another subject, and one pro­pounded this Syllogism:

Every Philosopher is wise:
Every Beast is wise,
Therefore every Beast is a Philosopher.

But another said that this Argument was false, therefore he contradicted him with a Syllogism of the second figure of the fourth Mode, thus:

Every Philosopher is wise:
Some Beasts are not wise,
Therefore some Beasts are not Philosophers.

Thus they argued, and intended to go on, but the Emperess interrupted them: I have enough, said she, of your chopt Logick, and will hear no more of your Syllogismes; for it disorders my reason, and puts my brain on the rack; your formal argumentations are able to spoil all natural wit; and I'le have you to consider, that Art does not make Reason, but Reason makes Art; and therefore as much as Reason is above Art, so much is a natural rational discourse to be preferred be­fore an artificial: For Art is, for the most part, irregular, and disorders mens understandings more then it recti­fies [Page 59] them, and leads them into a Labyrinth whence they'l never get out, and makes them dull and unfit for useful imployments; especially your Art of Logick, which confists onely contradicting each other, in ma­king sophismes, and obscuring Truth, instead of clear­ing it.

But they replied her Majesty, That the knowledg of Nature, that is, Natural Philosophy, would be imper­fect without the Art of Logick, and that there was an improbable Truth which could no otherwise be found out then by the Art of disputing. Truly, said the Emperess, I do believe that it is with Natural Philo­sophy, as it is with all other effects of Nature; for no particular knowledg can be perfect, by reason know­ledg is dividable, as well as composable; nay, to speak properly, Nature her self cannot boast of any perfe­ction, but God himself; because there are so many irre­gular motions in Nature, and 'tis but a folly to think that Art should be able to regulate them, since Art it self is, for the most part, irregular. But as for Improbable Truth, I know not what your meaning is; for Truth is more then Improbability; nay, there there is so much diffe­rence between Truth and Improbability, that I can­not conceive it possible how they can be joined toge­ther. In short, said she, I do no ways approve of your profession; and though I will not dissolve your society, yet I shall never take delight in hearing you any more; wherefore confine your disputations to your Schools, [Page 60] lest besides the Commonwealth of Learning, they di­sturb also Divinity and Policy, Religion and Laws, and by that means draw an utter ruine and destruction both upon Church and State.

After the Emperess had thus finish'd the Discourses and Conferences with the mentioned Societies of her Vertuoso's, she considered by her self the manner of their Religion, and finding it very defective, was troubled, that so wise and knowing a people should have no more knowledg of the Divine Truth; Where­fore she consulted with her own thoughts, whether it was possible to convert them all to her own Religion, and to that end she resolved to build Churches, and make also up a Congregation of Women, whereof she intended to be the head her self, and to instruct them in the several points of her Religion. This she had no sooner begun, but the Women, which generally had quick wits, subtile conceptions, clear understandings, and solid judgments, became, in a short time, very devout and zealous Sisters; for the Emperess had an excellent gift of Preaching, and instructing them in the Articles of Faith; and by that means, she converted them not onely soon, but gained an extraordinary love of all her subjects throughout that World. But at last, pon­dering with her self the inconstant nature of Mankind, and fearing that in time they would grow weary, and desert the divine Truth, following their own fancies, and living according to their own desires, she began to [Page 61] be troubled that her labours and pains should prove of so little effect, and therefore studied all manner of ways to prevent it. Amongst the rest, she call'd to mind a Relation which the Bird-men made her once, of a Mountain that did burn in flames of fire; and there­upon did immediately send for the wisest and subtilest of her Worm-men, commanding them to discover the cause of the Eruption of that same fire; which they did; and having dived to the very bottom of the Mountain, informed her Majesty, That there was a certain sort of Stone, whose nature was such, that be­ing wetted, it would grow excessively hot, and break forth into a flaming-fire, until it became dry, and then it ceased from burning. The Emperess was glad to hear this news, and forthwith desired the Worm-men to bring her some of that stone, but be sure to keep it secret: She sent also for the Bird-men, and asked them whether they could not get her a piece of the Sun­stone? They answered, That it was impossible, unless they did spoil or lessen the light of the World: but, said they, if it please your Majesty, we can demo­lish one of the numerous Stars of the Sky, which the World will never miss.

The Emperess was very well satisfied with this pro­posal, and having thus imployed these two sorts of men, in the mean while builded two Chappels one a­bove another; the one she lined throughout with Di­amonds, both Roof, Walls and Pillars; but the other [Page 64] be done by any other means, then by the help of Im­material Spirits; wherefore she made a Convoca­tion of the most learned, witty and ingenious of all the forementioned sorts of men, and desired to know of them, whether there were any Immaterial Spirits in their World. First, she enquired of the Worm-men, whe­ther they had perceived some within the Earth? They answered her Majesty, That they never knew of any such Creatures; for whatsoever did dwell within the Earth, said they, was imbodied and material. Then she asked the Flye-men, whether they had observed any in the Air? for you having numerous eyes, said she, will be more able to perceive them, then any other Creatures. To which they answered her Majesty, That although Spirits, being immaterial, could not be perceived by the Worm-men in the Earth, yet they perceived that such Creatures did lodg in the vehicles of the Air. Then the Emperess asked, Whether they could speak to them, and whether they did understand each other? The Fly-men answered, That those Spi­rits were always cloath'd in some sort or other of Mate­terial Garments; which Garments were their Bodies, made, for the most part, of Air; and when occasion served, they could put on any other sort of substances; but yet they could not put these substances into any form or shape, as they pleased. The Emperess asked the Fly-men, whether it was possible that she could be acquainted, and have some conferences with them? [Page 65] They answered, They did verily believe she might. Hereupon the Emperess commanded the Fly-men to ask some of the Spirits, whether they would be pleased to give her a visit? This they did; and after the Spirits had presented themselves to the Emperess, (in what shapes or forms, I cannot exactly tell) after some few complements that passed between them, the Em­peress told the Spirits that she questioned not, but they did know how she was a stranger in that World, and by what miraculous means she was arrived there; and since she had a great desire to know the condition of the World she came from, her request to the Spirits was, to give her some information thereof, especially of those parts of the world where she was born, bred, and educated, as also of her particular friends and acquain­tance; all which, the Spirits did according to her de­sire; at last, after a great many conferences and parti­cular intelligences, which the Spirits gave the Em­peress, to her great satisfaction and content, she enquired after the most famous Students, Writers, and Ex­perimental Philosophers in that World, which they gave her a full relation of; amongst the rest she enquired, whether there were none that had found out yet the Jews Cabbala? Several have endeavoured it, answered the Spirits, but those that came nearest (although them­selves denied it) were one Dr. Dee, and one Edward Kelly, the one representing Moses, and the other Aa­ron; for Kelly was to Dr. Dee, as Aaron to Moses; [Page 68] Is there not Divine Reason, as well as there is Natu­ral? No, answered they: for there is but a Divine Faith, and as for Reason it is onely natural; but you Mortals are so puzled about this divine Faith, and na­tural Reason, that you do not know well how to di­stinguish them, but confound them both, which is the cause you have so many divine Philosophers who make a Gallimafry both of Reason and Faith. Then she asked, Whether pure natural Philosophers were Cabbalists? They answered, No; but onely your Mystical or Divine Philosophers, such as study be­yond sense and reason. She enquired further, Whe­ther there was any Cabbala in god, or whether God was full of Ideas? They answered, There could be nothing in God, nor could God be full of any thing, either forms or figures, but of himself; for God is the Perfection of all things, and an Unexpressible Being, beyond the conception of any Creature, either Natural or Supernatural. Then I pray inform me, said the Emperess, Whether the Jews, or any other Cabbala, consist in numbers? The Spirits answered, No: for numbers are odd, and different, and would make a disagreement in the Cabbala. But said she again, Is it a sin then not to know or understand the Cabbala? God is so merciful, answered they, and so just, that he will never damn the ignorant, and save onely those that pretend to know him and his secret Counsels by their Cabbala's, but he loves those that adore and [Page 69] worship him with fear and reverence, and with a pure heart. She asked further, which of these two Cab­bala's was most approved, the Natural, or Theologi­cal? The Theological, answered they, is mystical, and belongs onely to Faith; but the Natural belongs to Reason. Then she asked them, Whether Divine Faith was made out of Reason? No, answered they, for Faith proceeds onely from a Divine saving Grace, which is a peculiar Gift of God. How comes it then, replied she, that Men, even those that are of several opinions, have Faith more or less? A natural be­lief, answered they, is not a Divine Faith. But, pro­ceeded the Emperess, How are you sure that God can­not be known? The several opinions you Mortals have of God, answered they, are sufficient witnesses thereof. Well then, replied the Emperess, leaving this inquisitive knowledg of God, I pray inform me, whether you Spirits give motion to natural bodies? No, answered they; but, on the contrary, natural material bodies give Spirits motion; for we Spirits, being incorporeal, have no motion but from our corporeal vehicles, so that we move by the help of our bodies, and not the bodies by the help of us; for pure Spirits are immovable. If this be so, replied the Em­peress, How comes it then that you can move so sud­denly at a vast distance? They answered, That some sorts of matter were more pure, rare, and consequently more light and agil then others; and this was the rea­son [Page 72] many in this age do think their Fore-fathers have been Fools, by which they prove themselves to be such. The Emperess asked further, whether there was any Plastick power in Nature? Truly, said the Spirits, Pla­stick power in a hard word, signifies no more then the power of the corporeal, figurative motions of Nature. After this, the Emperess desired the Spirits to inform her where the Paradise was, whether it was in the midst of the World as a Centre of pleasure? or whether it was the whole world, or a peculiar world by it self, as a world of life, and not of matter; or whether it was mixt, as a world of living animal Creatures? They answered, That Paradise was not in the world she came from, but in that world she lived in at present; and that it was the very same place where she kept her Court, and where her Palace stood, in the midst of the Imperial City. The Emperess asked further, whether in the beginning and Creation of the World, all Beasts could speak? They answered, That no Beasts could speak, but onely those sorts of Creatures which were Fish-men, Bear-men, Worm-men, and the like, which could speak in the first Age, as well as they do now. She asked again, whether they were none of those Spirits that frighted Adam out of the Paradise, at least caused him not to return thither again. They an­swered they were not. Then she desired to be informed, whither Adam fled when he was driven out of the Pa­radise? Out of this World, said they, you are now [Page 73] Emperess of, into the world you came from. If this be so, replied the Emperess, then surely those Cabbalists are much out of their story, who believe the Paradise to be a world of Life onely, without Matter; for this world, though it be most pleasant and fruitful, yet it is not a world of meer immaterial life, but a world of living, material Creatures. Without question, they are, answered the Spirits; for not all Cabbalas are true. Then the Emperess asked, That since it is mentioned in the story of the Creation of the World, that Eve was tempted by the Serpent, whether the Devil was within the Serpent, or whether the Serpent tempted her without the Devil? They answered, That the Devil was within the Serpent. But how came it then, replied she, that the Serpent was cursed? They an­swered, because the Devil was in him: for are not those men in danger of damnation which have the Devil within them, who perswades them to believe and act wickedly? The Emperess asked further, whether Light and the Heavens were all one. They answered, That that Region which contains the Lucid natural Orbs, was by mortals named Heaven; but the beati­fical Heaven, which is the Habitation of the blessed Angels and Souls, was so far beyond it, that it could not be compared to any natural Creature. Then the Emperess asked them, whether all Matter was fluid at first? They answered, That Matter was always as it is; and that some parts of Matter were rare, some dense, some [Page 74] fluid, some solid, &c. Neither was God bound to make all matter fluid at first. She asked further, whether Matter was immovable init self? We have an­swered you before, said they, That there is no motion but in Matter; and were it not for the motion of Matter, we Spirits, could not move, nor give you any answer to your several questions. After this, the Emperess asked the Spirits, whether the Universe was made within the space of six days, or whether by those six days, were ment so many Decrees or Commands of God? They answered her, that the World was made by the All-powerful Decree and Command of God; but whether there were six Decrees or Com­mands, or fewer, or more, no creature was able to tell. Then she inquired, whether there was no mystery in numbers? No other mystery, answered the Spirits, but reckoning or counting, for numbers are onely marks of remembrance. But what do you think of the number of Four, said she, which Cabbalists make such ado withal, and of the number of Ten, when they say that Ten is all, and that all numbers are virtually com­prehended in four? We think, answered they, that Cabbalists have nothing else to do but to trouble their heads with such useless fancies; for naturally there is no such thing as prime or all in numbers; nor is there any other mystery in numbers, but what man's fancy makes; but what men call Prime, or All, we do not know, because they do not agree in the number of their [Page 75] opinion. Then the Emperess asked, whether the number of six was a symbole of Matrimony, as being made up of Male and Female, for two into three is six. If any number can be a symbole of Matrimony, an­swered the Spirits, it is not Six, but Two; if two may be allowed to be a number: for the act of Matri­mony is made up of two joined in one. She asked a­gain, what they said to the number of Seven? whe­ther it was not an Embleme of God, because Cabbalists say, that it is neither begotten, nor begets any other num­ber, There can be no Embleme of God, answered the Spirits; for if we do not know what God is, how can we make an Embleme of him? Nor is there any number in God, for God is the perfection himself, but numbers are imperfect; and as for the begetting of numbers it is done by Multiplication and Addition; but Substraction is as a kind of death to numbers. If there be no mystery in numbers, replied the Emperess, then it is in vain to refer the Creation of the World to certain numbers, as Cabbalists do. The onely my­stery of numbers, answered they, concerning the Cre­ation of the World is, that as numbers do multiply, so does the world. The Emperess asked, how far num­bers did multiply? The Spirits answered, to Infinite. Why, said she, Infinite cannot be reckoned, nor num­bred. No more, answered they, can the parts of the Universe; for God's Creation, being an Infinite action, as proceeding from an Infinite Power, could not rest [Page 76] upon a finite number of Creatures, were it never so great. But leaving the mystery of numbers, pro­ceeded the Emperess, Let me now desire you to in­form me, whether the Suns and Planets were generated by the Heavens, or AEthereal Matter? The Spirits answered, That the Stars and Planets were of the same matter which the Heavens, the AEther, and all other natural Creatures did consist of; but whether they were generated by the Heavens or AEther, they could not tell: if they be, said they, they are not like their Parents; for the Sun, Stars, and Planets, are more splendorous then the AEther, as also more solid and constant in their motions: But put the case, the Stars and Planets were generated by the Heavens, and the AEthereal Matter; the question then would be, out of what these are generated or produced? if these be created out of nothing, and not generated out of something, then it is probable the Sun, Stars and Pla­nets are so too; nay, it is more probable of the Stars and Planets, then of the Heavens, or the fluid AEther, by reason the Stars and Planets seem to be further off from mortality, then the particular parts of the AEther; for no doubt but the parts of the AEthereal Matter alter into several forms, which we do not perceive of the Stars and Planets. The Emperess asked further, whether they could give her information of the three principles of Man, according to the doctrine of the Platonists; as first of the Intellect, Spirit, or Divine [Page 77] Light: 2. Of the Soul of Man her self: and 3. Of the Image of the Soul, that is, her vital operation on the body? The Spirits answered, that they did not understand these three distinctions; but that they seem'd to corporeal sense and reason, as if they were three several bodies, or three several corporeal actions; however, said they, they are intricate concep­tions of irregular fancies. If you do not under­stand them, replied the Emperess, hovv shall hu­mane Creatures do then? Many, both of your mo­dern and ancient Philosophers, answered the Spirits, endeavour to go beyond sense and reason, vvhich makes them commit absurdities; for no corporeal Creature can go beyond sense and reason; no not we Spirits, as long as vve are in our corporeal Vehicles. Then the Emperess asked them, vvhether there vvere any Atheists in the World? The Spirits answered, that there vvere no more Atheists then vvhat Cabba­lists make. She asked them further, Whether Spi­rits vvere of a globous or round Figure? They an­svvered, That Figure belonged to body, but they being immaterial had no figure. She asked again, Whether Spirits were not like Water or Fire? They answered, that Water and Fire was material, were it the purest and most refined that ever could be; nay, were it above the Heavens: But we are no more like Water or Fire, said they, then we are like Earth; but our Vehicles are of several forms, figures and degrees [Page 78] of substances. Then she desired to know, whether their Vehicles were made of Air? Yes, answered the Spirits, some of our Vehicles are of thin Air. Then I suppose, replied the Emperess, That those airy Ve­hicles, are your corporeal summersuits. She asked further, whether the Spirits had not ascending and de­scending motions, as well as other Creatures? They answered, That properly there was no ascension or descension in Infinite Nature, but onely in relation to particular parts; and as for us Spirits, said they, we can neither ascend nor descend without corporeal Ve­hicles; nor can our Vehicles ascend or descend, but ac­cording to their several shapes and figures, for there can be no motion without body. The Emperess asked them further, whether there was not a World of Spi­rits, as well as there is of material Creatures? No, answered they; for the word World implies a quan­tity or multitude of corporeal Creatures, but we being Immaterial, can make no world of Spirits. Then she desired to be informed when Spirits were made? We do not know, answered they, how and when we were made, nor are we much inquisitive after it; nay, if we did, it would be no benefit, neither for us, nor for you mortals to know it. The Emperess replied, That Cabbalists and Divine Philosophers said, mens ra­tional Souls were Immaterial, and stood as much in need of corporeal Vehicles, as Spirits did. If this be so, answered the Spirits, then you are Hermaphrodites of [Page 79] Nature; but your Cabbalists are mistaken, for they take the purest and subtillest parts of Matter for Imma­terial Spirits. Then the Emperess asked, when the souls of Mortals went out of their bodies, whether they went to Heaven or Hell, or whether they re­mained in airy Vehicles? God's Justice and Mercy, answered they, is perfect, and not imperfect; but if you mortals will have Vehicles for your Souls, and a place that is between Heaven and Hell, it must be Pur­gatory, which is a place of Purification, for which acti­on Fire is more proper then Air, and so the Vehicles of those souls that are in Purgatory cannot be airy, but fi­ery; and after this rate there can be but four places for humane souls to be in, viz. Heaven, Hell, Purgatory, and this World; but as for Vehicles, they are but fan­cies, not real truths. Then the Emperess asked them, where Heaven and Hell was? Your Saviour Christ, answered the Spirits, has informed you, that there is Heaven and Hell, but he did not tell you what, nor where they are; wherefore it is too great a presumption for you Mortals to inquire after it; if you do but strive to get into Heaven, it is enough, though you do not know where or what it is, for it is beyond your know­ledg and understanding. I am satisfied, replied the Emperess, and asked further, whether there were any figures or characters in the Soul? They answered, where there was no body, there could be no figure. Then she asked them, whether Spirits could be naked? [Page 80] and whether they were of a dark, or a light colour? As for our nakedness, it is a very odd question, an­swered the Spirits; and we do not know what you mean by a naked Spirit; for you judg of us as of cor­poreal Creatures; and as for Colour, said they, it is according to our Vehicles; for Colour belongs to Body, and as there is no Body that is colourless, so there is no Colour that is bodiless. Then the Empe­ress desired to be informed, whether all souls were made at the first Creation of the World? We know no more, answered the Spirits, of the origine of humane souls, then we know of our selves. She asked fur­ther, whether humane bodies were not burthensome to humane souls? They answered, That bodies made Souls active, as giving them motion; and if action was troublesome to souls, then bodies were so too. She asked again, whether souls did chuse bo­dies? They answered, That Platonicks believed, the souls of Lovers lived in the bodies of their Beloved; but surely, said they, if there be a multitude of souls in a world of Matter, they cannot miss bodies; for as soon as a soul is parted from one body, it enters into another; and souls having no motion of themselves, must of necessity be cloathed or imbodied with the next parts of Matter. If this be so, replied the Em­peress, then I pray inform me, whether all matter be soulified? The Spirits answered, They could not exactly tell that; but if it was true, that Matter had no [Page 81] other motion but what came from a spiritual power, and that all matter was moving, then no soul could quit a body, but she must of necessity enter into another soulified body, and then there would be two im­material substances in one body. The Emperess asked, whether it was not possible that there could be two souls in one body? As for immaterial souls, an­swered the Spirits, it is impossible; for there cannot be two immaterials in one inanimate body, by reason they want parts, and place, being bodiless; but there may be numerous material souls in one composed body, by reason every material part has a material natural soul; for Nature is but one Infinite self-moving, li­ving and self-knowing body, consisting of the three de­grees of inanimate, sensitive and rational Matter, so intermixt together, that no part of Nature, were it an Atome, can be without any of these three degrees; the sensitive is the life, the rational the soul, and the ina­nimate part, the body of Infinite Nature. The Em­peress was very well satisfied with this answer, and asked further, whether souls did not give life to bo­dies? No, answered they; but Spirits and Divine Souls have a life of their own, which is not partable, being purer then a natural life; for Spirits are incor­poreal, and consequently individable. But when the Soul is in its Vehicle, said the Emperess, then me thinks she is like the Sun, and the Vehicle like the Moon. No, answered they, but the Vehicle is like [Page 82] the Sun, and the Soul like the Moon; for the Soul hath motion from the Body, as the Moon has light from the Sun. Then the Emperess asked the Spirits, whether it was an evil Spirit that tempted Eve, and brought all the mischiefs upon Mankind, or whether it was the Serpent? They answered, That Spirits could not commit actual evils. The Emperess said they might do it by perswasions. They answered, That Perswasions were actions; but the Emperess not being contented with this answer, asked whether there was not a supernatural Evil? The Spirits answered, That there was a supernatural Good, which was God; but they knew of no supernatural Evil that was equal to God. Then she desired to know, whether Evil Spi­rits were reckoned amongst the Beasts of the Field? They answer'd, That many Beasts of the field were harmless Creatures, and very serviceable for Man's use; and though some were accounted fierce and cruel, yet did they exercise their cruelty upon other Creatures, for the most part, to no other end, but to get themselves food, and to satisfie their natural appetite; but cer­tainly, said they, you men are more cruel to one ano­ther, then evil Spirits are to you; and as for their ha­bitations in desolate places, we having no communion with them, can give you no certain account thereof. But what do you think, said the Emperess, of Good Spirits? may not they be compared to the Fowls of the Air? They answered, There were many cruel and [Page 83] revenous Fowls as well in the Air, as there were fierce and cruel Beasts on Earth; so that the good are al­ways mixt with the bad. She asked further, whether the fiery Vehicles were a Heaven, or a Hell, or at least a Purgatory to the Souls? They answered, That if the Souls were immaterial, they could not burn, and then fire would do them no harm; and though Hell was believed to be an undecaying and unquenchable fire, yet Heaven was no fire. The Emperess replied, That Heaven was a Light. Yes, saidthey, but not a fiery Light. Then she asked, whether the different shapes and sorts of Vehicles, made the Souls and other Immaterial Spirits, miserable, or blessed? The Ve­hicles, answered they, make them neither better, nor worse; for though some Vehicles sometimes may have power over others, yet these by turns may get some power gain over them, according to the several ad­vantages and disadvantages of particular natural parts. The Emperess asked further, whether animal life came out of the spiritual World, and did return thither again? The Spirits answered, they could not exactly tell; but if it were so, then certainly animal lives must leave their bodies behind them, otherwise the bodies would make the spiritual World a mixt World, that is, part­ly material, and partly immaterial; but the Truth is, said they, Spirits being immaterial, cannot properly make a World; for a World belongs to material, not to im­material Creatures. If this be so, replied the Em­peress, [Page 84] then certainly there can be no world of lives and forms without matter? No, answered the Spi­rits, nor a world of Matter without lives and forms; for natural lives and forms cannot be immaterial, no more then Matter can be immovable. And therefore natural lives, forms and matter, are inseparable. Then the Emperess asked, whether the first Man did feed on the best sorts of the fruits of the Earth, and the beasts on the worst? The Spirits answered, That unless the beasts of the field were barred out of manu­red fields and gardens, they would pick and chuse the best fruits as well as men; and you may plainly ob­serve it, said they, in Squirrels and Monkies, how they are the best chusers of Nuts and Apples, and how Birds do pick and feed on the most delicious fruits, and Worms on the best roots, and most savoury herbs; by which you may see, that those Creatures live and feed better then men do, except you will say, that arti­ficial Cookery is better and more wholesom then the natural. Again, the Emperess asked, whether the first Man gave names to all the several sorts of Fishes in the Sea, and fresh waters? No, answered the Spi­rits, for he was an Earthly, and not a watery Crea­ture, and therefore could not know the several sorts of Fishes. Why, replied the Emperess, he was no more an airy Creature then he was a watery one, and yet he gave names to the several sorts of Fowls and Birds of the Air. Fowls answered they, are partly Airy, and [Page 85] partly Earthly Creatures, not onely because they re­semble Beasts and Men in their flesh, but because their rest and dwelling places are on Earth; for they build their nests, lay their eggs, and hatch their young, not in the Air, but on the Earth. Then she asked, Whether the first Man did give names to all the vari­ous sorts of Creatures that live on the Earth? Yes, answered they, to all those that were presented to him, or he had knowledg of, that is, to all the prime sorts; but not to every particular; for of Mankind, said they, there were but two at first, and as they did encrease, so did their names. But, said the Emperess, who gave the names to the several sorts of Fish? The posterity of Mankind, answered they. Then she enquired, Whether there were no more kinds of Creatures now, then at the first Creation? They answered, That there were no more nor fewer kinds of Creatures then there are now; but there were, without question, more particular sorts of Creatures now, then there were then. She asked again, Whether all those Creatures that were in Paradise, were also in Noah's Ark? They answered, That the principal kinds had been there, but not all the particulars. Then she would fain know, how it came, that both Spirits and Men did fall from a blessed into so miserable a state and condition they are now in. The Spirits answered, By disobedience. The Emperess asked, Whence this disobedient sin did proceed? But the Spirits desired the Emperess not to [Page 86] ask them any such questions, because they went be­yond their knowledg. Then she begg'd the Spirits to pardon her presumption; for, said she, It is the na­ture of Mankind to be inquisitive. Natural desire of knowledg, answered the Spirits, is not blameable, so you do not go beyond what your natural reason can comprehend. Then I'le ask no more, said the Empe­ress, for fear I should commit some error; but one thing I cannot but aquaint you withal: What is that, said the Spirits? I have a great desire, answered the Emperess, to make a Cabbala. What kind of Cab­bala asked the Spirits? The Emperess answered, The Jews Cabbala. No sooner had the Emperess decla­red her Mind, but the Spirits immediately disap­peared out of her sight; which startled the Emperess so much, that she fell into a Trance, wherein she lay for some while; at last being come to her self again, she grew very studious, and considering with her self what might be the cause of this strange disaster, conceived at first, that perhaps the Spirits were tired with hearing and giving answers to her questions; but thinking by her self, that Spirits could not be tired, she imagined that this was not the true cause of their disappearing, till af­ter diverse debates with her own thoughts, she did verily believe that the Spirits had committed some fault in their answers, and that for their punishment they were condemned to the lowest and darkest Vehicles. This belief was so fixt in her mind, that it put her into a [Page 87] very Melancholick humor; and then she sent both for her Fly- and Worm-men, and declared to them the cause of her sadness. 'T is not so much, said she, the vanishing of those Spirits that makes me Melancholick, but that I should be the cause of their miserable condi­tion, and that those harmless Spirits should, for my sake, sink down into the black and dark abyss of the Earth. The Worm-men comforted the Emperess, telling her, that the Earth was not so horrid a dwelling, as she did imagine; for, said they, not onely all Mi­nerals and Vegetables, but several sorts of Animals can witness, that the Earth is a warm, fruitful, quiet, safe and happy habitation; and though they want the light of the Sun, yet are they not in dark, but there is light even within the Earth, by which those Creatures do see that dwell therein. This relation setled her Ma­jesties mind a little; but yet she being desirous to know the Truth, where, and in what condition those Spi­rits were, commanded both the Fly- and Worm-men to use all labour and industry to find them out, where­upon the Worm-men straight descended into the Earth, and the Fly-men ascended into the Air. After some short time, the Worm-men returned, and told the Emperess, that when they went into the Earth, they inquired of all the Creatures they met withal, whether none of them had perceived such or such Spirits, until at last coming to the very Center of the Earth, they were truly informed, that those Spirits had stayed some [Page 90] she will without question, be ready to do you all the ser­vice she can. The Lady then, said the Emperess, will I chuse for my scribe, neither will the Emperor have reason to be jealous, she being one of my own sex. In truth, said the Spirit, Husbands have reason to be jea­lous of Platonick Lovers, for they are very dangerous, as being not onely very intimate and close, but subtil and insinuating. You say well, replied the Emperess; where­fore I pray send me the Duchess of Newcastle's Soul; which the Spirit did; and after she came to wait on the Emperess, at her first arrival the Emperess imbraced and saluted her with a spiritual kiss; then she asked her whether she could write? Yes, answered the Du­chess's Soul, but not so intelligibly that any Reader whatsoever may understand it, unless he be taught to know my Characters; for my Letters are rather like Characters, then well-formed Letters, Said the Em­peress, you were recommended to me by an honest and ingenious Spirit. Surely, answered the Duchess, the Spirit is ignorant of my hand-writing. The truth is, said the Emperess, he did not mention your hand-wri­ting; but he informed me, that you writ sense and reason, and if you can but write so, that any of my Secretaries may learn your hand, they shall write it out fair and in­telligible. The Duchess answered, That she questioned not but it might easily be learned in a short time. But, said she to the Emperess, What is it that your Maje­sty would have written. She answered, The Jews [Page 91] Cabbala. Then your onely way for that is, said the Duchess, to have the Soul of some famous Jew; nay, if your Majesty please, I scruple not, but you may as easily have the soul of Moses, as of any other. That cannot be, replied the Emperess, for no mortal knows where Moses is. But, said the Duchess, humane Souls are immortal; however, if this be too difficult to be obtained, you may have the Soul of one of the chief Rabbies or Sages of the Tribe of Levi, who will truly instruct you in that mystery; when as, otherwise, your Majesty will be apt to mistake, and a thousand to one, but commit gross errors. No, said the Emperess, for I shall be instructed by Spirits. Alas! said the Duchess, Spirits are as ignorant as Mortals in many cases; for no created Spirits have a general or absolute knowledg, nor can they know the Thoughts of Men, much less the Mysteries of the great Creator, unless he be plea­sed to inspire into them the gift of Divine Knowledg. Then, I pray, said the Emperess, let me have your counsel in this case. The Duchess answered, If your Majesty will be pleased to hearken to my advice, I would desire you to let that work alone; for it will be of no advantage either to you, or your people, un­less you were of the Jews Religion; nay, if your were, the vulgar interpretation of the holy Scripture would be more instructive, and more easily believed, then your mystical way of interpreting it; for had it been better and more advantagious for the salvation of the Jews, [Page 92] surely Moses would have saved after ages that labour by his own explanation, he being not onely a wise, but a very honest, zealous and religious Man: Where­fore the best way, said she, is to believe with the ge­nerality the literal sense of the Scripture, and not to make interpretations every one according to his own fancy, but to leave that work for the Learned, or those that have nothing else to do; Neither do I think, said she, that God will damn those that are ignorant there­in, or suffer them to be lost for want of a mystical in­terpretation of the Scripture. Then, said the Empe­ress, I'le leave the Scripture, and make a Philosophi­cal Cabbala. The Duchess told her, That sense and reason would instruct her of Nature as much as could be known; and as for numbers, they were infi­nite, but to add non-sense to infinite, would breed a confusion, especially in humane understanding. Then, replied the Emperess, I'le make a moral Cab­bala. The onely thing, answered the Duchess, in morality, is but to fear God, and to love his Neigh­bour, and this needs no further interpretation. But then I'le make a Political Cabbala, said the Emperess. The Duchess answered, That the chief and onely ground in Government, was but Reward and Punish­ment, and required no further Cabbala; But, said she, If your Majesty were resolved to make a Cabbala, I would advise you, rather to make a Poetical or Ro­mancical Cabbala, wherein you can use Metaphors, [Page 93] Allegories, Similitudes, &c. and interpret them as you please. With that the Emperess thank'd the Duchess, and embracing her soul, told her she would take her Counsel: she made her also her favourite, and kept her sometime in that world, and by this means the Duchess came to know and give this Relation of all that passed in that rich, populous, and happy world; and after some time the Emperess gave her leave to re­turn to her Husband and Kindred into her native world, but upon condition, that her soul should visit her now and then; which she did, and truly their meet­ing did produce such an intimate friendship between them, that they became Platonick Lovers, although they were both Females.

One time, when the Duchess her Soul was with the Emperess, she seem'd to be very sad and melan­choly; at which the Emperess was very much trou­bled, and asked her the reason of her melancholick humour? Truly said the Duchess to the Emperess (for between dear friends there's no concealment, they being like several parts of one united body) my Me­lancholy proceeds from an extreme ambition. The Emperess asked, what the height of her ambition was? The Duchess answered, That neither she her self, nor no Creature in the World was able to know ei­ther the height, depth or breadth of her ambition; but said she, my present desire is, that I would be a great Princess. The Emperess replied, so you are; for you [Page 94] are a Princess of the fourth or fifth degree; for a Duke or Duchess is the highest title or honour that a subject can arrive to, as being the next to a Kings Title; and as for the name of a Prince or Princess, it belongs to all that are adopted to the Crown; so that those that can add a Crown to their arms, are Princes, and therefore a Duke is a Title above a Prince; for example, the Duke of Savoy, the Duke of Florence, the Duke of Lor­raine, as also Kings Brothers are not called by the name of Princes, but Dukes, this being the higher Title. 'Tis true, answered the Duchess, unless it be Kings eldest Sons, and they are created Princes. Yes, re­plied the Emperess, but no Soverain does make a subject equal to himself, such as Kings eldest sons partly are: And although some Dukes be soveraign, yet I never heard that a Prince by his Title is soveraign, by reason the Title of a Prince is more a Title of Honour, then of Soverainty; for, as I said before, it belongs to all that are adopted to the Crown. Well, said the Deuchess, setting aside this dispute, my ambition is, that I would fain be as you are, that is, an Emperess of a World, and I shall never be at quiet until I be one. I love you so well, replied the Emperess, that I wish with all my soul, you had the fruition of your ambitious desire, and I shall not fail to give you my best advice how to ac­complish it; the best informers are the Immaterial Spi­rits, and they'l soon tell you, whether it be possible to obtain your wish. But, said the Duchess, I have little [Page 95] acquaintance with them, for I never knew any before the time you sent for me. They know you, replied the Emperess; for they told me of you, and were the means and instrument of our coming hither: Where­fore I'le conser with them, and enquire whether there be not another World, whereof you may be Emperess as well as I am of this? No sooner had the Emperess said this, but some Immaterial Spirits came to visit her, of whom she inquired, whether there were but three Worlds in all, to wit, the Blazing-world where she was in, the World which she came from, and the World where the Duchess lived? The Spirits answered, That there were more numerous Worlds then the Stars which appeared in these three mentioned Worlds. Then the Emperess asked, whether it was not possible, that her dearest friend the Duchess of Newcastle, might be Emperess of one of them? Although there be nu­merous, nay, infinite Worlds, answered the Spirits, yet none is without Government. But is none of these Worlds so weak, said she, that it may be surpri­sed or conquered? The Spirits answered, That Lu­cian's World of Lights, had been for some time in a snuff, but of late years one Helmont had got it, who since he was Emperour of it, had so strengthened the Immortal parts thereof with mortal out-works, as it was for the present impregnable. Said the Emperess, If there be such an Infinite number of Worlds, I am sure, not onely my friend, the Duchess, but any [Page 96] other might obtain one. Yes, answered the Spirits, if those Worlds were uninhabited; but they are as po­pulous as this, your Majesty governs. Why, said the Emperess, it is not impossible to conquer a World. No, answered the Spirits, but, for the most part, Conquerers seldom enjoy their conquest, for they be­ing more feared then loved, most commonly come to an untimely end. If you will but direct me, said the Duchess to the Spirits, which World is easiest to be conquered, her Majesty will assist me with means, and I will trust to Fate and Fortune; for I had rather die in the adventure of noble atchievements, then live in obscure and sluggish security; since by the one, I may live in a glorious Fame, and by the other I am buried in oblivion. The Spirits answered, That the lives of Fame were like other lives; for some lasted long, and some died soon. Tis true, said the Duchess; but yet the shortest-lived Fame lasts longer then the longest life of Man. But, replied the Spirits, if occasion does not serve you, you must content your self to live without such atchievements that may gain you a Fame: But we wonder, proceeded the Spirits, that you desire to be Emperess of a Terrestrial World, when as you can create your self a Celestial World if you please. What, said the Emperess, can any Mor­tal be a Creator? Yes, answered the Spirits; for every humane Creature can create an Immaterial World fully inhabited by immaterial Creatures, and [Page 97] populous of immaterial subjects, such as we are, and all this within the compass of the head or scull; nay, not onely so, but he may create a World of what fashion and Government he will, and give the Creatures thereof such motions, figures, forms, colours, per­ceptions, &c. as he pleases, and make Whirl-pools, Lights, Pressures and Reactions, &c. as he thinks best; nay, he may make a World full of Veins, Muscles, and Nerves, and all these to move by one jolt or stroke: also he may alter that world as often as he pleases, or change it from a natural world, to an artificial; he may make a world of Ideas, a world of Atomes, a world of Lights, or whatsoever his fancy leads him to. And since it is in your power to create such a world, What need you to venture life, reputation and tranquility, to conquer a gross material world? For you can enjoy no more of a material world then a particular Creature is able to enjoy, which is but a small part, considering the compass of such a world; and you may plainly ob­serve it by your friend the Emperess here, which al­though she possesses a whole world, yet enjoys she but a part thereof; neither is she so much acquainted with it, that she knows all the places, Countries and Do­minions she Governs. The truth is, a Soveraign Mo­narch has the general trouble; but the Subjects enjoy all the delights and pleasures in parts; for it is impos­sible, that a Kingdom, nay, a County should be in­joyed by one person at once, except he take the pains [Page 100] dusty and misty particles, she endeavoured to create a World according to Aristotle's Opinion; but re­membring that her mind, as most of the Learned hold it, was Immaterial, and that according to Aristotle's Principle, out of Nothing, Nothing could be made; she was forced also to desist from that work, and then she fully resolved, not to take any more patterns from the Ancient Philosophers, but to follow the Opinions of the Moderns; and to that end, she endeavoured to make a World according to Des Cartes Opinion; but when she had made the AEthereal Globules, and set them a moving by a strong and lively imagination, her mind became so dizzie with their extraordinary swift turning round, that it almost put her into a swoon; for her thoughts, by their constant tottering, did so stagger, as if they had all been drunk: wherefore she dissolved that World, and began to make another, according to Hobbs's Opinion; but when all the parts of this Imaginary World came to press and drive each other, they seemed like a company of Wolves that worry Sheep, or like so many Dogs that hunt after Hares; and when she found a reaction equal to those pressures, her mind was so squeesed together, that her thoughts could neither move forward nor back­ward, which caused such an horrible pain in her head, that although she had dissolved that World, yet she could not, without much difficulty, settle her mind, and free it from that pain which those pressures and reactions had caused in it.

[Page 101] At last, when the Duchess saw that no patterns would do her any good in the framing of her World; she was resolved to make a World of her own invention, and this World was composed of sensi­tive and rational self-moving Matter; indeed, it was composed onely of the rational, which is the subtilest and purest degree of Matter; for as the sensitive did move and act both to the perceptions and consistency of the body, so this degree of Matter at the same point of time (for though the degrees are mixt, yet the several parts may move several ways at one time) did move to the Creation of the Imaginary World; which World after it was made, appear'd so curious and full of vari­ety, so well order'd and wisely govern'd, that it can­not possibly be expressed by words, nor the delight and pleasure which the Duchess took in making this world of her own.

In the mean time the Emperess was also making and dissolving several worlds in her own mind, and was so puzled, that she could not settle in any of them; where­fore she sent for the Duchess, who being ready to wait on the Emperess, carried her beloved world along with her, and invited the Emperess's Soul to observe the frame, order and Government of it. Her Majesty was so ravished with the perception of it, that her soul desired to live in the Duchess's World; but the Duchess advised her to make such another World in her own mind; for, said she, your Majesties mind is [Page 102] full of rational corporeal motions, and the rational mo­tions of my mind shall assist you by the help of sensitive expressions, with the best instructions they are able to give you.

The Emperess being thus perswaded by the Duchess to make an imaginary World of her own, fol­lowed her advice; and after she had quite finished it, and framed all kinds of Creatures proper and useful for it, strengthened it with good Laws, and beautified it with Arts and Sciences; having nothing else to do, un­less she did dissolve her imaginary world, or made some alterations in the Blazing-world, she lived in, which yet she could hardly do, by reason it was so well order­ed that it could not be mended; for it was governed without secret and deceiving Policy; neither was there any ambition, factions, malicious detractions, civil dissensions, or home-bred quarrels, divisions in Reli­gion, forreign Wars, &c. but all the people lived in a peaceful society, united Tranquillity, and Religious Conformity; she was desirous to see the world the Duchess came from, and observe therein the several so­veraign Governments, Laws and Customs of several Nations. The Duchess used all the means she could, to divert her from that Journey, telling her, that the world she came from, was very much disturbed with factions, divisions and wars; but the Emperess would not be perswaded from her design; and lest the Em­perour, or any of his subjects should know of her travel, [Page 103] and obstruct her design, she sent for some of the Spirits she had formerly conversed withal, and inquired whe­ther none of them could supply the place of her soul in her body at such a time, when she was gone to travel into another World? They answered, Yes, they could; for not onely one, said they, but many Spi­rits may enter into your body, if you please. The Emperess replied, she desired but one Spirit to be Vice­Roy of her body in the absence of her Soul, but it must be an honest and ingenious Spirit; and if it was possi­ble, a female Spirit. The Spirits told her, that there was no difference of Sexes amongst them; but, said they, we will chuse an honest and ingenious Spirit, and such a one as shall so resemble your soul, that nei­ther the Emperour, nor any of his subjects, although the most Divine, shall know whether it be your own soul, or not: which the Emperess was very glad at, and after the Spirits were gone, asked the Duchess, how her body was supplied in the absence of her soul? who answered Her Majesty, That her body, in the ab­sence of her soul, was governed by her sensitive and rational corporeal motions. Thus those two female souls travelled together as lightly as two thoughts into the Duchess her native World; and which is remark­able, in a moment viewed all the parts of it, and all the actions of all the Creatures therein, especially did the Emperess's soul take much notice of the several actions of humane Creatures in all the several Nations and [Page 104] parts of that World, and wonder'd that for all there were so many several Nations, Governments, Laws, Religions, Opinions, &c. they should all yet so ge­nerally agree in being Ambitious, Proud, Self-con­ceited, Vain, Prodigal, Deceitful, Envious, Mali­cious, Unjust, Revengeful, Irreligious, Factious, &c. She did also admire, that not any particular State, Kingdom or Common-wealth, was contented with their own shares, but endeavoured to encroach upon their neighbours, and that their greatest glory was in Plunder and Slaughter, and yet their victorie's less then their expenses, and their losses more then their gains, but their being overcome in a manner their utter ruine. But that she wonder'd most at, was, that they should prize or value dirt more then mens lives, and vanity more then tranquillity; for the Emperor of a world, said she, injoys but a part, not the whole; so that his plea­sure consists in the opinions of others. It is strange to me, answered the Duchess, that you should say thus, being your self, an Emperess of a World, and not onely of a world, but of a peaceable, quiet, and obedient world. 'Tis true, replied the Emperess, but although it is a peaceable and obedient world, yet the Government thereof is rather a trouble, then a pleasure; for order cannot be without industry, contrivance and direction; besides, the Magnificent state, that great Princes keep or ought to keep, is troublesome. Then by your Ma­jesties discourse, said the Duchess, I perceive that the [Page 105] greatest happiness in all Worlds consist in Modera­tion: No doubt of it, replied the Emperess; and af­ter these two souls had visited all the several places, Con­gregations and Assemblies both in Religion and State, the several Courts of Judicature, and the like, in several Nations, the Emperess said, That of all the Mo­narchs of the several parts of that World, she had ob­served the Grand-Signior was the greatest; for his word was a Law, and his power absolute. But the Duchess pray'd the Emperess to pardon her that she was of another mind; for, said she, he cannot alter Ma­homets Laws and Religion; so that the Law and Church do govern the Emperor, and not the Empe­ror them. But, replied the Emperess, he has power in some particulars; as for example, to place and dis­place subjects in their particular Governments of Church and State, and having that, he has the Com­mand both over Church and State, and none dares oppose him. 'Tis true, said the Duchess; but if it pleases your Majesty, we will go into that part of the world whence I came to wait on your Majesty, and there you shall see as powerful a Monarch as the Grand-Signior; for though his Dominions are not of so large extent, yet they are much stronger, his Laws are easie and safe, and he governs so justly and wisely, that his subjects are the happiest people of all the Na­tions or parts of that world. This Monarch, said the Emperess, I have a great mind to see: Then they both [Page 106] went, and in a short time arrived into his Dominions; but coming into the Metropolitan City, the Emperess's soul observed many Galants go into an house, and en­quiring of the Duchess's soul, what house that was? She told her, It was one of the Theatres where Come­dies and Tragedies were acted. The Emperess asked, Whether they were real? No, said the Duchess, They are feigned. Then the Emperess desired to en­ter into the Theatre, and when she had seen the Play that was acted, the Duchess asked her how she liked that Recreation? I like it very well, said the Empe­ress; but I observe, that the Actors make a better show then the Spectators, and the Scenes a better then the Actors, and the Musick and Dancing is more plea­sant and acceptable then the Play it self; for I see, the Scenes stand for wit, the Dancing for humour, and the Musick is the Chorus. I am sorry, replied the Duchess, to hear your Majesty say so; for if the Wits of this part of the world should hear you, they would condemn you. What, said the Emperess, would they condemn me for preferring a natural face before a sign-post, or a natural humour before an artificial dance, or Musick before a true and profitable Rela­tion? As for relation, replied the Duchess, our Po­ets defie and condemn it into a Chimney-corner, fitter for old Womens Tales, then Theatres. Why, said the Emperess, do not your Poets actions comply with their judgments? for their Plays are composed of old [Page 107] stories, either of Greek or Roman, or some new-found World. The Duchess answered her Majesty, that it was true, that all or most of their Plays were taken out of old Stories, but yet they had new actions, which being joined to old stories, together with the addition of new Prologues, Scenes, Musick and Dancing, made new Plays.

After this, both the Souls went to the Court, where all the Royal Family was together, attended by the chief of the Nobles of their Dominions, which made a very magnificent show; and when the soul of the Emperess viewed the King and Queen, she seemed to be in amaze, which the Duchess's soul perceiving, asked the Emperess how she liked the King, the Queen, and all the Royal Race? She answered, that in all the Monarchs she had seen in that World, she had not found so much Majesty and affability mixt so exactly together, that none did overshadow or eclipse the other; and as for the Queen, she said, that Vertue sate Tri­umphant in her face, and Piety was dwelling in her heart, and that all the Royal Family seem'd to be en­dued with a Divine splendor: but when she had heard the King discourse, she believ'd, that Mercury and Apollo had been his Celestial instructors; and my dear Lord and Husband, added the Duchess, has been his Earthly Governour. But after some short stay in the Court, the Duchess's soul grew very Melancholy; the Empe­ress asking the cause of her sadness? She told her, that [Page 108] she had an extreme desire to converse with the soul of her noble Lord and dear Husband, and that she was impatient of a longer stay. The Emperess desired the Duchess to have but patience so long, until the King, the Queen, and the Royal Family were retired, and then she would bear her company to her Lord and Husbands Soul, who at that time lived in the Country some 112 miles off; which she did: and thus these two souls went towards those parts of the King­dom where the Duke of Newcastle was.

But one thing I forgot all this while, which is, That although thoughts are the natural language of souls, yet by reason souls cannot travel without Vehicles, they use such language as the nature and propriety of their Vehicles require, and the Vehicles of those two souls being made of the purest and finest sort of air, and of a humane shape; this purity and fineness was the cause that they could neither be seen nor heard by any humane Creature; when as, had they been of some grosser sort of Air, the sound of that Airs language would have been as perceptible as the blowing of Ze­phyrus.

And now to return to my former Story; when the Emperess's and Duchess's Soul were travelling into Nottingham-shire, for that was the place where the Duke did reside; passing through the forrest of Shere­wood, the Emperess's soul was very much delighted with it, as being a dry, plain and woody place, very [Page 109] pleasant to travel in both in Winter and Summer; for it is neither much dirty, nor dusty at no time: at last they arrived at Welbeck, a House where the Duke dwell'd, surrounded all with Wood, so close and full, that the Emperess took great pleasure and delight there­in, and told the Duchess she never had observed more wood in so little a compass in any part of the Kingdom she had passed through; The truth is, said she, there seems to be more wood on the Seas, she meaning the Ships, then on the Land. The Duchess told her, the reason was, that there had been a long Civil War in that Kingdom, in which most of the best Timber-trees and Principal Palaces were ruined and destroyed; and my dear Lord and Husband, said she, has lost by it half his Woods, besides many Houses, Land, and moveable Goods; so that all the loss out of his particu­lar Estate, did amount to above half a Million of Pounds. I wish, said the Emperess, he had some of the Gold that is in the Blazing-world, to repair his los­ses. The Duchess most humbly thank'd her Imperial Majesty for her kind wishes; but, said she, wishes will not repair his ruines: however, God has given my Noble Lord and Husband great Patience, by which he bears all his losses and misfortunes. At last, they enter'd into the Dukes House, an habitation not so magnificent, as useful; and when the Emperess saw it, Has the Duke, said she, no other house but this? Yes, answered the Duchess, some five miles from this place, he has a very [Page 110] fine Castle, called Bolesover. That place then, said the Emperess, I desire to see. Alas! replied the Duchess, it is but a naked house, and uncloath'd of all Furniture. However, said the Emperess, I may see the manner of its structure and building. That you may, replied the Duchess: and as they were thus discoursing, the Duke came out of the House into the Court, to see his Horses of mannage; whom when the Duchess's soul perceived, she was so overjoyed, that her aereal Ve­hicle became so splendorous, as if it had been enlightned by the Sun; by which we may perceive, that the passions of Souls or Spirits can alter their bodily Vehicles. Then these two Ladies Spirits went close to him, but he could not perceive them; and after the Emperess had observed the Art of Mannage, she was much pleased with it, and commended it as a noble pastime, and an exercise fit and proper for noble and heroick Persons: But when the Duke was gone into the house again, those two Souls followed him; where the Emperess observing, that he went to the exercise of the Sword, and was such an excellent and unparallell'd Master thereof, she was as much pleased with that exercise, as she was with the former: But the Duchess's soul being troubled, that her dear Lord and Husband used such a violent exercise before meat, for fear of overheating himself, without any consideration of the Empe­ress's soul, left her aereal Vehicle, and entred into her Lord. The Emperess's soul perceiving this, did [Page 111] the like: And then the Duke had three Souls in one Body; and had there been but some such Souls more, the Duke would have been like the Grand-Signior in his Seraglio, onely it would have been a Platonick Seraglio. But the Dukes soul being wise, honest, witty, complaisant and noble, afforded such delight and plea­sure to the Emperess's soul by her conversation, that these two souls became enamoured of each other; which the Duchess's soul perceiving, grew jealous at first, but then considering that no Adultery could be committed amongst Platonick Lovers, and that Platonism was Divine, as being derived from Divine Plato, cast forth of her mind that Idea of Jealousie. Then the Con­versation of these three souls was so pleasant, that it can­not be expressed; for the Dukes soul entertained the Emperesses soul with Scenes, Songs, Musick, witty Discourses, pleasant Recreations, and all kinds of harm­less sports; so that the time passed away faster then they expected. At last, a Spirit came and told the Empe­ress, that although neither the Emperour, nor any of his subjects knew that her soul was absent; yet the Em­perours soul was so sad and melancholy, for want of his own beloved soul, that all the Imperial Court took no­tice of it. Wherefore he advised the Emperess's Soul to return into the Blazing-world, into her own body she left there; which both the Dukes and Duchess's soul was very sorry for, and wished, that if it had been possible, the Emperess's soul might have stayed a longer [Page 112] time with them; but seeing it could not be otherwise, they pacified themselves: But before the Emperess re­turned into the Blazing-world, the Duchess desired a favour of her, to wit, that she would be pleased to make an agreement between her Noble Lord, and Fortune. Why, said the Emperess, are they ene­mies? Yes, answered the Duchess, and they have been so ever since I have been his Wife; nay, I have heard my Lord say, that she hath crossed him in all things ever since he could remember. I am sorry for that, replied the Emperess, but I cannot discourse with Fortune without the help of an Immaterial Spirit, and that cannot be done in this World, for I have no Fly-nor Bird-men here, to send into the region of the Air, where, for the most part, their habitations are. The Duchess said, she would intreat her Lord to send an Attorney or Lawyer, to plead her cause. For­tune will bribe them, replied the Emperess, and so the Duke may chance to be cast; Wherefore the best way will be for the Duke to chuse a friend on his side, and let Fortune chuse another, and try whether by this means it be possible to compose the difference. The Duchess said, They will never come to an agreement, unless there be a Judg or Umpire to decide the Case. A Judg, replied the Empersss, is easie to be had, but to get an Impartial Judg, is a thing so difficult, that I doubt we shall hardly find one; for there is none to be had neither in Nature, nor in Hell, but onely [Page 113] from Heaven, and how to get such a Divine and Cele­stial Judg, I cannot tell: Nevertheless, if you will go along with me into the Blazing-world, I'le try what may be done. 'Tis my duty, said the Duchess, to wait on your Majesty, and I shall most willingly do it, for I have no other interest to consider. Then the Duchess spake to the Duke concerning the difference between him and Fortune, and how it was her desire that they might be friends. The Duke answered, That for his part, he had always with great industry, sought her friendship, but as yet he could never obtain it, for she had always been his enemy: However, said he, I'le try, and send my two friends, Prudence and Honesty, to plead my cause. Then these two friends went with the Duchess and the Emperess into the Bla­zing-world; (for it is to be observed, that they are somewhat like Spirits, because they are immaterial, al­though their actions are corporeal:) and after their ar­rival there, when the Emperess had refreshed her self, and rejoiced with the Emperor, she sent her Fly-men for some of the Spirits, and defired their assistance, to compose the difference between Fortune, and the Duke of Newcastle. But they told her Majesty, That For­tune was so inconstant, that although she would per­haps promise to hear their cause pleaded, yet it was a thousand to one, but she would never have the patience to do it: Nevertheless, upon Her Majesties request, they tried their utmost, and at last prevailed [Page 114] with Fortune so far, that she chose Folly, and Rashness, for her Friends, but they could not agree in chusing a Judg; until at last, with much ado, they concluded, that Truth should hear, and decide the cause. Thus all being prepared, and the time appointed, both the Emperess's and Duchess's soul went to hear them plead; and when all the Immaterial company was met, For­tune standing upon a Golden-Globe, made this follow­ing Speech:

Noble Friends, We are met here to hear a Cause plead­ed concerning the difference between the Duke of Newca­stle, and my self; and though I am willing upon the perswa­sions of the Ambassadors of the Emperess, the Immaterial Spirits, to yield to it, yet it had been fit, the Dukes Soul should be present also, to speak for her self; but since she is not here, I shall declare my self to his Wife, and his Friends, as also to my Friends, especially the Emperess, to whom I shall chiefly direct my Speech. First, I desire, your Imperial Majesty may know, that this Duke who complains or exclaims so much against me, hath been always my ene­my; for he has preferred Honesty and Prudence before me, and slighted all my favours; nay, not onely thus, but he did fight against me, and preferred his Innocence before my Power. His friends Honesty and Prudence, said he most scornfully, are more to be regarded, then Inconstant Fortune, who is onely a friend to Fools and Knaves; for which neglect and scorn, whether I have not just reason to be his enemy, your Majesty may judg your self.

[Page 115] After Fortune had thus ended her Speech, the Duchess's Soul rose from her seat, and spake to the Im­material Assembly in this manner:

Noble Friends, I think it fit, by your leave, to an­swer Lady Fortuue in the behalf of my Noble Lord and Husband, since he is not here himself; and since you have heard her complaint concerning the choice my Lord made of his friends, and the neglect and difrespect he seemed to cast upon her; give me leave to answer, that, first concerning the Choice of his Friends, He has proved himself a wise man in it; and as for the dis-respect and rudeness, her La­diship accuses him of, I dare say, he is so much a Gentleman, that I am confident he would never slight, scorn or disrespect any of the Female Sex in all his life time; but was such a servant and Champion for them, that he ventured Life and Estate in their service; but being of an honest, as well as an honourable Nature, he could not trust Fortune with that which he preferred above his life, which was his Re­putation, by reason Fortune did not side with those that were honest and honourable, but renounced them; and since he could not be of both sides, he chose to be of that which was agreeable both to his Conscience, Nature and Education; for which choice Fortune did not onely declare her self his open Enemy, but fought with him in several Battels; nay, many times, hand to hand; at last, she being a Powerful Princess, and as some believe, a Deity, overcame him, and cast him into a Banishment, where she kept him in great misery, ruined his Estate, and took away from him [Page 116] most of his Friends; nay, even when she favoured ma­ny that were against her, she still frowned on him; all which he endured with the greatest patience, and with that respect to Lady Fortune, that he did never in the least endeavour to disoblige any of her Favourites, but was one­ly sorry that he, an honest man, could find no favour in her Court; and since he did never injure any of those she favoured, he neither was an enemy to her Ladiship, but gave her always that respect and worship which belonged to her power and dignity, and is still ready at any time honestly and prudently to serve her; he onely begs her Ladiship would be his friend for the future, as she hath been his enemy in times past.

As soon as the Duchess's Speech was ended, Folly and Rashness started up, and both spake so thick and fast at once, that not onely the Assembly, but themselves were not able to understand each other: At which Fortune was somewhat out of countenance, and com­manded them either to speak singly, or be silent: But Prudence told her Ladiship, she should command them to speak wisely, as well as singly; otherwise, said she, it were best for them not to speak at all: Which Fortune resented very ill, and told Prudence, she was too bold; and then commanded Folly to declare what she would have made known: but her Speech was so foolish, mixt with such non-sence, that none knew what to make of it; besides, it was so tedious, that Fortune bid her to be silent, and commanded Rashness [Page 117] to speak for her, who began after this manner:

Great Fortune; The Duchess of Newcastle has pro­ved her self, according to report, a very Proud and Am­bitious Lady, in presuming to answer you her own self, in this noble Assembly without your Command, in a Speech wherein she did not onely contradict you, but preferred Ho­nesty and Prudence before you; saying, that her Lord was ready to serve you honestly and prudently; which pre­sumption is beyond all pardon; and if you allow Honestly and Prudence to be above you, none will admire, worship or serve you; but you'l be forced to serve your self, and will be despised, neglected and scorned by all; and from a Deity, become a miserable, dirty, begging mortal in a Church-yard-Porch, or Noble-mans Gate: Wherefore to prevent such disasters, fling as many misfortunes and neglects on the Duke and Duchess of Newcastle, and their two friends, as your power is able to do; otherwise Prudence and Honesty will be the chief and onely Moral Deities of Mortals.

Rashness having thus ended her Speech, Prudence rose and declared her self in this manner:

Beautiful Truth, Great Fortune, and you the rest of my noble Friends; I am come a great and long jour­ney in the behalf of my dear Friend the Duke of New­castle, not to make more wounds, but, if it be possible, to heal those that are made already. Neither do I presume to be a Deity; but my onely request is, that you would be plea­sed to accept of my offering, I being an humble and devout [Page 118] supplicant, and since no offering is more acceptable to the Gods, then the offering of Peace; in order to that, I desire to make an agreement between Fortune, and the Duke of Newcastle.

Thus she spake, and as she was going on, up start­ed Honesty (for she has not always so much discretion as she ought to have) and interrupted Prudence.

I came not here, said she, to hear Fortune flattered, but to hear the Cause decided between Fortune and the Duke; neither came I hither to speak Rhetorically and Eloquently, but to propound the case plainly and truly; and I'le have you know, that the Duke, whose Cause we argue, was and is my Foster-son; For I Honesty bred him from his Childhood, and made a perpetual friendship betwixt him and Gratitude, Charity and Generosity; and put him to School to Prudence, who taught him Wisdom, and inform­ed him in the Rules of Temperance, Patience, Justice, and the like; then I put him into the Vniversity of Honour, where he learned all honourable Qualities, Arts, and Sciences; afterward I sent him to travel through the World of Actions, and made Observation his Governour; and in those his travels, he contracted a friendship with Experience; all which, made him fit for Heavens Blessings, and For­tunes Favours: But she hating all those that have merit and desert, became his inveterate Enemy, doing him all the mischief she could, until the God of Justice opposed For­tunes Malice, and pull'd him out of those ruines she had cast upon him: For this Go'ds Favours were the Dukes [Page 119] Champions; wherefore to be an Enemy to him, were to be an Enemy to the God of Justice: In short, the true cause of Fortunes Malice to this Duke, is, that he would never flatter her; for I Honesty, did command him not to do it, or else he would be forced to follow all her inconstam ways, and obey all her unjust commands, which would cause a great reproach to him: but, on the other side, Prudence ad­vised him not to despise Fortunes favours, for that would be an obstruction and hinderance to his worth and merit; and He to obey both our advice and counsels, did neither flatter nor despise Her, but was always humble and respectful to her, so far as Honour, Honesty and Conscience would permit: all which I refer to Truths Judgment, and expect her final sentence.

Fortune hearing thus Honesties plain Speech, thought it very rude, and would not hearken to Truths Judg­ment, but went away in a Passion: At which, both the Emperess and Duchess were extreamly troubled, that their endeavours should have no better effect: but Ho­nesty chid the Duchess, and said, she was to be pu­nished for desiring so much Fortunes favours; for it appears, said she, that you mistrust the Gods blessings: At which the Duchess wept, answering Honesty, that she did neither mistrust the Gods blessings, nor rely upon Fortunes favours; but desired onely that her Lord might have no potent Enemies. The Emperess being much troubled to see her weep, told Honesty in anger, she wanted the discretion of Prudence; for though [Page 120] you are commendable, said she, yet you are apt to commit many indiscreet actions, unless Prudence be your guide. At which reproof Prudence smiled, and Honesty was somewhat out of countenance; but they soon became very good friends: and after the Duchess's soul had stayed some time with the Emperess in the Blazing-world, she begg'd leave of her to return to her Lord and Husband; which the Emperess granted her, upon condition she should come and visit her as often as convenintly she could, promising that she would do the same to the Duchess.

Thus the Duchess's soul, after she had taken her leave of the Emperess, as also of the Spirits, who with great civility, promised her, that they would en­deavour in time to make a peace and agreement be­tween Fortune and the Duke, returned with Prudence and Honesty into her own World: But when she was just upon her departure, the Emperess sent to Her, and desired that she might yet have some little conference with her before she went; which the Duchess most willingly granted her Majesty, and when she came to wait on Her, the Emperess told the Duchess, that she being Her dear Platonick friend, of whose just and impartial judgment, she had always a very great esteem, could not forbear, before she went from her, to ask her advice concerning the Govern­ment of the Blazing-world; For, said she, although this World was very well and wisely order'd and go­verned [Page 121] at first, when I came to be Emperess thereof; yet the nature of Women, being much delighted with change and variety, after I had received an absolute Power from the Emperour, did somewhat alter the Form of Government from what I found it; but now perceiving that the world is not so quiet as it was at first, I am much troubled at it; especially there are such continual contentions and divisions between the Worm­Bear- and Fly-men, the Ape-men, the Satyrs, the Spider-men, and all others of such sorts, that I fear they'l break out into an open Rebellion, and cause a great disorder and ruine of the Government; and there­fore I desire your advice and assistance, how I may or­der it to the best advantage, that this World may be rendred peaceable, quiet and happy, as it was before. Whereupon the Duchess answered, That since she heard by her Imperial Majesty, how well and happily the World had been governed when she first came to be Emperess thereof, she would advise her Majesty to introduce the same form of Government again, which had been before; that is, to have but one Soveraign, one Religion, one Law, and one Language, so that all the World might be but as one united Family, without divisions; nay, like God, and his Blessed Saints and Angels: Otherwise, said she, it may in time prove as unhappy, nay, as miserable a World as that is from which I came, wherein are more Soveraigns then Worlds, and more pretended Governours then Go­vernments, [Page 122] more Religions then Gods, and more O­pinions in those Religions then Truths; more Laws then Rights, and more Bribes then Justices, more Policies then Necessities, and more Fears then Dangers; more Covetousness then Riches, more Ambitions then Merits, more Services then Rewards, more Languages then Wit, more Controversie then Knowledg, more Reports then noble Actions, and more Gifts by par­tiality, then according to merit; all which, said she, is a great misery, nay, a curse, which your blessed Bla­zing-world never knew, nor 'tis probable, will never know of, unless your Imperial Majesty alter the Go­vernment thereof from what it was when you began to govern it: And since your Majesty complain much of the factions of the Bear- Fish- Fly- Ape- and Worm­men, the Satyrs, Spider-men, and the like, and of their perpetual disputes and quarrels, I would advise your Majesty to dissolve all their societies; for 'tis better to be without their intelligences, then to have an un­quiet and disorderly Government. The truth is, said she, wheresoever is Learning, there is most commonly also Controversie and Quarrelling; for there be always some that will know more, and be wiser then others; some think their arguments come nearer to truth, and are more rational then others; some are so wedded to their own opinions, that they'l never yield to Reason; and others, though they find their Opinions not firmly grounded upon Reason, yet for fear of receiving some [Page 123] disgrace by altering them, will nevertheless maintain them against all sense and reason, which must needs breed factions in their Schools, which at last break out into open Wars, and draw sometimes an utter ruine upon a State or Government. The Emperess told the Duchess, that she would willingly follow her advice, but she thought it would be an eternal disgrace to her, to alter her own Decrees, Acts and Laws. To which the Duchess answered, That it was so far from a disgrace, as it would rather be for her Majesties eternal honour, to return from a worse to a better, and would express and declare Her to be more then ordinary wise and good; so wise, as to perceive her own errors, and so good, as not to persist in them, which few did; for which, said she, you will get a glorious same in this World, and an Eternal glory hereafter; and I shall pray for it so long as I live. Upon which advice, the Emperess's Soul embraced and kiss'd the Duchess's soul with an immaterial kiss, and shed immaterial tears, that she was forced to part from her, finding her not a flat­tering Parasite, but a true friend; and, in truth, such was their Platonick Friendship, as these two loving Souls did often meet and rejoice in each others Conver­sation.

[...]

[Page 2] where all her Friends and Relations did live, at which the Emperess was extreamly troubled; insomuch that the Emperor perceived her grief by her tears, and ex­amining the cause thereof, she told him that she had re­ceived Intelligence from the Spirits, that that part of the World she came from, which was her native Coun­try, was like to be destroyed by numerous Enemies that made war against it. The Emperor being very sensible of this ill news, especially of the Trouble it caused to the Emperess, endeavorred to comfort her as much as possibly he could, and told her, that she might have all the assistance which the Blazing-world was able to afford. She answered, That if there were any possibility of transporting Forces out of the Bla­zing-world, into the World she came from, she would not fear so much the ruine thereof: but, said she, there be­ing no probability of effecting any such thing, I know not how to shew my readiness to serve my Native Country. The Emperor asked, Whether those Spirits that gave her Intelligence of this War, could not with all their Power and Forces assist her against those Enemies? She answered, That Spirits could not arm themselves, nor make any use of Artificial Arms or Weapons; for their Vehicles were Natural Bodies, not Artificial: Besides, said she, the violent and strong actions of War, will never agree with Immaterial Spirits; for Immaterial Spirits cannot fight, nor make Trenches, Fortifications, and the like. But, said the Emperor, their Vehicles can; [Page 3] especially if those Vehicles be mens Bodies, they may be serviceable in all the actions of War. Alas, replied the Emperess, that will never do; for first, said she, it will be difficult to get so many dead Bodies for their Vehi­cles, as to make up a whole Army, much more to make many Armies to fight with so many several Nations; nay, if this could be, yet it is not possible to get so ma­ny dead and undissolved bodies in one Nation; and for transporting them out of other Nations, would be a thing of great difficulty and improbability: But put the case, said she, all these difficulties could be over­come, yet there is one obstruction or hinderance which can no ways be avoided; for although those dead and undissolved Bodies did all die in one minute of time, yet before they could Rendezvouze, and be put into a posture of War, to make a great and formidable Army, they would stink and dissolve; and when they came to a fight, they would moulder into dust and ashes, and so leave the purer Immaterial Spirits naked: nay, were it also possible, that those dead bo­dies could be preserved from stinking and dissolving, yet the souls of such bodies would not suffer Immaterial Spirits to rule and order them, but they would enter and govern them themselves, as being the right owners thereof, which would produce a War between those Immaterial Souls, and the Immaterial Spirits in Materi­al Bodies; all which would hinder them from doing any service in the actions of War, against the Enemies [Page 4] of my Native Countrey. You speak Reason, said the Emperor, and I wish with all my Soul I could advise any manner or way, that you might be able to assist it; but you having told me of your dear Platonick Friend the Duchess of Neweastle, and of her good and prositable Counsels, I would desire you to send for her Soul, and conser with her about this business.

The Emperess was very glad of this motion of the Emperor, and immediately sent for the Soul of the said Duchess, which in a minute waited on her Majesty. Then the Emperess declared to her the grievance and sadness of her mind, and how much she was troubled and afflicted at the News brought her by the Immaterial Spirits, desiring the Duchess, if possible, to assist her with the best counsels she could, that she might shew the greatness of her love and affection which she bore to her Native Coun­trey. Whereupon the Duchess promised her Maje­sty to do what lay in her power; and since it was a business of great Importance, she desired some time to consider of it; for, said she, Great Affairs require deep considerations; which the Emperess willingly allowed her. And after the Duchess had considered some little time, she desired the Emperess to send some of her Syrenes or Mear-Men, to see what passa­ges they could find out of the Blazing-World, into the World she came from; for said she, if there be [Page 5] a passage for a Ship to come out of that World into this; then certainly there may also a Ship pass thorow the same passage out of this World in­to that. Hereupon the Mear-or Fish-men were sent out; who being many in number, employ'd all their industry, and did swim several ways; at last ha­ving found out the passage, they returned to the Em­peress, and told her, That as their Blazing-World had but one Emperor, one Government, one Reli­gion, and one Language, so there was but one Passage into that World, which was so little, that no Ves­sel bigger than a Packet-Boat could go thorow; nei­ther was that Passage always open, but sometimes quite frozen up. At which Relation both the Em­peress and Duchess seemed somewhat troubled, fearing that this would perhaps be an hinderance or obstru­ction to their Design.

At last the Duchess desired the Emperess to send for her Ship-wrights, and all her Architects, which were Giants; who being called, the Duchess told them how some in her own World had been so ingenious, and contrived Ships that could swim under Water, and asked whether they could do the like? The Gyants answered, They had never heard of that Invention; nevertheless, they would try what might be done by Art, and spare no labour or industry to find it out. In the mean time, while both the Emperess and Duchess were in a serious Counsel, [Page 6] after many debates, the Duchess desired but a few Ships to transport some of the Bird-Worm-and Bear­men. Alas! said the Emperess, What can such sorts of Men do in the other World? especially so few? They will be soon destroyed, for a Musket will destroy numbers of Birds at one shot. The Duchess said, I desire your Majesty will have but a little pati­ence, and rely upon my advice, and you shall not fail to save your own Native Country, and in a manner become Mistress of all that World you came from. The Emperess, who loved the Duchess as her own Soul, did so; the Gyants returned soon after, and told her Ma­jesty, that they had found out the Art which the Du­chess had mentioned, to make such Ships as could swim under Water; which the Emperess and Duchess were both very glad at, and when the Ships were made rea­dy, the Duchess told the Emperess, that it was requisite that her Majesty should go her self in body as well as in Soul; but, I, said she, can onely wait on your Ma­jesty after a Spiritual manner, that is, with my Soul. Your Soul, said the Emperess, shall live with my Soul, in my Body; for I shall onely desire your Counseland Advice. Then said the Duchess, Your Majesty must command a great number of your Fish-men to wait on your Ships; for you know that your Ships are not made for Cannons, and therefore are no ways service­able in War; for though by the help of your Engines they can drive on, and your Fish-men may by the [Page 7] help of Chains or Ropes, draw them which way they will, to make them go on, or flye back, yet not so as to fight: And though your Ships be of Gold, and cannot be shot thorow, but onely brui­sed and battered; yet the Enemy will assault and en­ter them, and take them as Prizes; wherefore your Fish­men must do you Service instead of Cannons. But how, said the Emperess, can the Fish-men do me service against an Enemy, without Canons and all sorts of Arms? That is the reason, answered the Duchess, that I would have numbers of Fish-men, for they shall destroy all your Enemies Ships, be­fore they can come near you. The Emperess ask­ed in what manner that could be? Thus, answered the Duchess: Your Majesty must send a number of Worm-men to the Burning-Mountains (for you have good store of them in the Blazing-World) which must get a great quantity of the Fire-stone, whose property, you know, is, that it burns so long as it is wet; and the Ships in the other World be­ing all made of Wood, they may by that means set them all on fire; and if you can but destroy their Ships, and hinder their Navigation, you will be Mistress of all that World, by reason most parts thereof cannot live without Navigation. Besides, said she, the Fire-stone will serve you instead of light or torches; for you know, that the World you are going into, is dark at nights (especially if there be no [Page 8] Moon-shine, or if the Moon be overshadowed by Clouds) and not so full of Blazing-Stars as this World is, which make as great a light in the ab­sence of the Sun, as the Sun doth when it is present; for that World hath but little blinking Stars, which make more shadows then light, and are one­ly able to draw up Vapours from the Earth, but not to rarifie or clarifie them, or to convert them into serene air.

This Advice of the Duchess was very much ap­proved, and joyfully embraced by the Emperess, who forthwith sent her Worm-men to get a good quantity of the mentioned Fire-Stone. She also com­manded numbers of Fish-men to wait on her under water, and Bird-men to wait on her in the air; and Bear-and Worm-men to wait on her in Ships, ac­cording to the Duchess's advice; and indeed the Bear-men were as serviceable to her as the North­Star; but the Bird-men would often rest themselves upon the Decks of the Ships; neither would the Em­peress, being of a sweet and noble Nature, suffer that they should tire or weary themselves by long flights; for though by Lard they did often flye out of one Coun­trey into another, yet they did rest in some Woods, or on some Grounds, especially at night, when it was their sleeping time: And therefore the Emperess was forced to take a great many Ships along with her, both for transporting those several sorts of her loyal [Page 9] and serviceable Subjects, and to carry provisions for them: Besides, she was so wearied with the Petiti­ons of several others of her Subjects who desired to wait on her Majesty, that she could not possibly de­ny them all; for some would rather chuse to be drowned, then not tender their duty to her.

Thus after all things were made fit and ready, the Emperess began her Journey, I cannot properly say, she set Sail, by reason in some Part, as in the passage between the two Worlds (which yet was but short) the Ships were drawn under water by the Fish-men with Golden Chains, so that they had no need of Sails there, nor of any other Arts, but onely to keep out water from entering into the Ships, and to give or make so much Air as would serve for breath or respiration, those Land Animals that were in the Ships; which the Giants had so Artificially contri­ved, that they which were therein found no in­conveniency at all: And after they had passed the Icy Sea, the Golden Ships appeared above water, and so went on until they came near the King­dom that was the Emperess's Native Countrey; where the Bear-men through their Telescopes disco­vered a great number of Ships which had beset all that Kingdom, well rigg'd and mann'd.

The Emperess before she came in sight of the E­nemy, sent some of her Fish-and Bird-men to bring her Intelligence of their Fleet; and hearing of their [Page 10] number, their station and posture, she gave order that when it was Night, her Bird-men should carry on their backs some of the mentioned Fire-stones, with the tops thereof wetted; and the Fish-men should carry them likewise, and hold them out of the Water; for they were cut in the form of Torches or Candles, and being many thousands, made a terrible shew; for it appear'd as if all the Air and Sea had been of a fla­ming Fire; and all that were upon the Sea, or near it, did verily believe, the time of Judgment, or the Last Day was come, which made them all fall down, and Pray.

At the break of Day, the Emperess command­ed those Lights to be put out, and then the Naval Forces of the Enemy perceived nothing but a Num­ber of Ships without Sails, Guns, Arms, and other Instruments of War; which Ships seemed to swim of themselves, without any help or assistance: which sight put them into a great amaze; neither could they per­ceive that those Ships were of Gold, by reason the Emperess had caused them all to be coloured black, or with a dark colour; so that the natural colour of the Gold could not be perceived through the arti­ficial colour of the paint, no not by the best Tele­scopes. All which put the Enemies Fleet into such a fright at night, and to such wonder in the morning, or at day time, that they knew not what to judg or make of them; for they knew neither what [Page 11] Ships they were, nor what Party they belonged to, insomuch that they had no power to stir.

In the mean while, the Emperess knowing the Co­lours of her own Country, sent a Letter to their Ge­neral, and the rest of the chief Commanders, to let them know, that she was a great and powerful Princess, and came to assist them against their Enemies; where­fore she desired they should declare themselves, when they would have her help and assistance.

Hereupon a Councel was called, and the business debated; but there were so many cross and different Opinions, that they could not suddenly resolve what answer to send the Emperess; at which she grew angry, insomuch that she resolved to return into her Blazing­world, without giving any assistance to her Country­men: But the Duchess of Newcastle in treated her Majesty to abate her passion; for, said she, Great Councels are most commonly slow, because many men have many several Opinions: besides, every Councellor striving to be the wisest, makes long speeches, and raises many doubts, which cause retard­ments. If I had long speeched Councellours, replied the Emperess, I would hang them, by reason they give more Words, then Advice. The Duchess answered, that her Majesty should not be angry, but consider the differences of that and her Blazing-world; for, said she, they are not both alike; but there are grosser and dul­ler understandings in this, then in the Blazing-world.

[Page 12] At last a Messenger came out, who returned the Emperess thanks for her kind profer, but desired with­al to know from whence she came, and how, and in what manner her assistance could be serviceable to them? The Emperess answered, That she was not bound to tell them whence she came; but as for the man­ner of her assistance, I will appear, said she, to your Navy in a splendorous Light, surrounded with Fire. The Messenger asked at what time they should expect her coming? I'le be with you, answered the Emperess, about one of the Clock at night. With this report the Messenger returned; which made both the poor Counsellers and Sea-men much afraid; but yet they longed for the time to behold this strange sight.

The appointed hour being come, the Emperess ap­pear'd with Garments made of the Star-stone, and was born or supported above the Water, upon the Fish­mens heads and backs, so that she seemed to walk upon the face of the Water, and the Bird- and Fish-men carried the Fire-stone, lighted both in the Air, and above the Waters.

Which sight, when her Country-men perceived at a distance, their hearts began to tremble; but coming something nearer, she left her Torches, and appeared onely in her Garments of Light, like an Angel, or some Deity, and all kneeled down before her, and worshipped her with all submission and reverence: But [Page 13] the Emperess would not come nearer then at such a distance where her voice might be generally heard, by reason she would not have that of her Accoustre­ments any thing else should be perceived, but the splendor thereof; and when she was come so near that her voice could be heard and understood by all, she made this following Speech;

Dear Country-men, for so you are, although you know me not; I being a Native of this Kingdom, and hear­ing that most part of this World had resolved to make War against it, and sought to destroy it, at least to weaken its Naval Force and Power; have made a Voyage out of another World, to lend you my assistance against your Ene­mies. I come not to make bargains with you, or to re­gard my own Interest, more then your safety; but I intend to make you the most powerful Nation of this World; and therefore I have chosen rather to quit my own Tranquility, Riches and Pleasure, then suffer you to be ruined aud de­stroyed. All the Return I desire, is but your Grateful ac­knowledgment, and to declare my Power, Love and Loy­alty to my Native Country; for although I am now a great and absolute Princess and Emperess of a whole World, yet I acknowledg that once I was a Subject of this Kingdom, which is but a small part of this World; and therefore I will have you undoubtedly believe, that I shall destroy all your Enemies before this following Night, I mean those which trouble you by Sea; and if you have any [Page 14] by Land, assure your self I shall also give you my Assistance against them, and make you Triumph over all that seek your Ruine and Destruction.

Upon this Declaration of the Emperess, when both the General, and all the Commanders in their seve­ral Ships had return'd their humble and hearty Thanks to Her Majesty for so great a favour to them, she took her leave and departed to her own Ships. But, Good Lord! what several Opinions and Judgments did this produce in the minds of her Country-men; some said she was an Angel; others, she was a Sorceress; some be­lieved her a Goddess; others said the Devil deluded them in the shape of a fine Lady.

The morning after, when the Navies were to fight, the Emperess appear'd upon the face of the Waters, dress'd in her Imperial Robes, which were all of Dia­monds and Carbuncles; in one hand she held a Buck­ler, made of one intire Carbuncle, and in the other hand a Spear of one intire Diamond; on her head she had a Cap of Diamonds, and just upon the top of the Crown, was a Star made of the Star-stone, mentio­ned heretofore, and a Half-moon made of the same stone, was placed on her forehead; all her other Gar­ments were of several sorts of precious Jewels; and having given her Fish-men directions how to destroy the Enemies of her Native Country, she proceeded to effect her design. The Fish-men were to carry the [Page 15] Fire-stones in cases of Diamonds (for the Dia­monds in the Blazing-world are in splendor so far be­yond the Diamonds of this World, as Peble-stones are to the best sort of this Worlds Diamonds) and to uncase or uncover those Fire-stones no sooner but when they were just under the Enemies Ships, or close at their sides, and then to wet them, and set their Ships on fire; which was no sooner done, but all the Ene­mies Fleet was of a Flaming-fire; and coming to the place where the Powder was, it streight blew them up; so that all the several Navies of the Enemies, were de­stroyed in a short time: which when her Country­men did see, they all cried out with one voice, that she was an Angel sent from God to deliver them out of the hands of their Enemies: Neither would she return into the Blazing-world, until she had forced all the rest of that World to submit to that same Nation.

In the mean time, the General of all their Naval For­ces sent to their Soveraign to acquaint him with their miraculous Delivery and Conquest, and with the Emperess's design of making him the most powerful Monarch of all that World. After a short time, the Emperess sent her self to the Soveraign of that Na­tion to know in what she could be serviceable to him; who returning her many thanks, both for her assistance against his Enemies, and her kind profer to do him fur­ther service for the good and benefit of his Nations (for he was King over several Kingdoms) sent her word, [Page 16] that although she did partly destroy his Enemies by Sea, yet they were so powerful, that they did hinder the Trade and Traffick of his Dominions. To which the Emperess returned this answer, That she would burn and sink all those Ships that would not pay him Tribute; and forthwith sent to all the Neighbouring Nations, who had any Traffick by Sea, desiring them to pay Tribute to the King and Soveraign of that Na­tion where she was born; But they denied it with great scorn. Whereupon she imediately command­ed her Fish-men to destroy all strangers Ships that traffick'd on the Seas; which they did according to the Emperess's Command; and when the neighbour­ing Nations and Kingdoms perceived her power, they were so discomposed in their affairs and designs, that they knew not what to do: At last they sent to the Emperess, and desired to treat with her, but could get no other conditions then to submit and pay Tri­bute to the said King and Soveraign of her Native Country, otherwise, she was resolved to ruine all their Trade and Traffick by burning their Ships. Long was this Treat, but in fine, they could obtain no­thing, so that at last they were forced to submit; by which the King of the mentioned Nations became ab­solute Master of the Seas, and consequently of that World; by reason, as I mentioned heretofore, the several Nations of that World could not well live without Traffick and Commerce, by Sea, as well as by Land.

[Page 17] But after a short time, those Neighbouring Na­tions finding themselves so much inslaved, that they were hardly able to peep out of their own Domi­nions without a chargeable Tribute, they all agreed to join again their Forces against the King and So­veraign of the said Dominions; which when the Em­peress receiv'd notice of, she sent out her Fish-men to destroy, as they had done before, the remainder of all their Naval Power, by which they were soon forced again to submit, except some Nations which could live without Forreign Traffick, and some whose Trade and Traffick was meerly by Land; these would no wayes be Tributary to the mentioned King. The Emperess sent them word, That in case they did not submit to him, she intended to fire all their Towns and Cities, and reduce them by force, to what they would not yield with a good will. But they rejected and scorned her Majesties Mes­sage, which provoked her anger so much, that she resolved to send her Bird- and Worm-men thi­ther, with order to begin first with their smaller Towns, and set them on fire (for she was loath to make more spoil then she was forced to do) and if they remain'd still obstinate in their resolutions, to destroy also their greater Cities. The onely difficulty was, how to convey the Worm-men conveniently to those pla­ces; but they desired that her Majesty would but set them upon any part of the Earth of those Nations, [Page 18] and they could travel within the Earth as easily, and as nimbly as men upon the face of the Earth; which the Emperess did according to their desire.

But before both the Bird-and Worm-men began their Journey, the Emperess commanded the Bear­men to view through their Telescopes what Towns and Cities those were that would not submit; and having a full information thereof, she instructed the Bird-and Bear-men what Towns they should begin withall; in the mean while she sent to all the Prin­ces and Soveraigns of those Nations, to let them know that she would give them a proof of her Power, and check their Obstinacies by burning some of their smaller Towns; and if they continued still in their Obstinate Resolutions, that she would convert their smaller Loss into a Total Ruine. She also commanded her Bird-men to make their flight at night, lest they be perceived. At last when both the Bird-and Worm-men came to the designed places, the Worm-men laid some Fire-stones under the Foun­dation of every House, and the Bird-men placed some at the tops of them, so that both by rain, and by some other moisture within the Earth, the stones could not fail of burning. The Bird-men in the mean time having learned some few words of their Language, told them, That the next time it did rain, their Towns would be all on fire; at which they were amaz'd to hear men speak in the air; but [Page 19] withall they laughed when they heard them say that rain should fire their Towns, knowing that the ef­fect of Water was to quench, not produce fire.

At last a rain came, and upon a sudden all their Houses appeared of a flaming Fire, and the more Water there was poured on them, the more they did flame and burn; which struck such a Fright and Terror into all the Neighbouring Cities, Nations and Kingdoms, that for fear the like should happen to them, they and all the rest of the parts of that World granted the Emperess's desire, and submitted to the Monarch and Soveraign of her Native Coun­trey, the King of ESFI; save one, which having seldom or never any rain, but onely dews, which would soon be spent in a great fire, slighted her Po­wer: The Emperess being desirous to make it stoop, as well as the rest, knew that every year it was wa­tered by a flowing Tide, which lasted some weeks; and although their Houses stood high from the ground, yet they were built upon Supporters which were fixt into the ground. Wherefore she commanded both her Bird-and Worm-men to lay some of the Fire-stones at the bottom of those Supporters, and when the Tide came in, all their Houses were of a Fire, which did so rarifie the Water, that the Tide was soon turn'd into Vapour, and this Vapour again into Air; which caused not onely a destru­ction of their Houses, but also a general barrenness [Page 20] over all their Countrey that year, and forced them to submit as well as the rest of the World had done.

Thus the Emperess did not onely save her Native Countrey, but made it the absolute Monarchy of all that World; and both the effects of her Power and her Beauty did kindle a great desire in all the great­est Princes to see her; who hearing that she was re­solved to return into her own Blazing-World, they all entreated the favour, that they might wait on her Majesty before she went. The Emperess sent word, That she should be glad to grant their Re­quests; but having no other place of reception for them, she desired that they would be pleased to come into the open Seas with their Ships, and make a Cir­cle of a pretty large compass, and then her own Ships should meet them, and close up the Circle, and she would present her self to the view of all these that came to see her: Which Answer was joyfully re­ceived by all the mentioned Princes, who came, some sooner, and some later, each according to the distance of his Countrey, and the length of the voy­age. And being all met in the form and manner a­foresaid, the Emperess appeared upon the face of the Water in her Imperial Robes; in some part of her hair she had placed some of the Star-Stone, near her face, which added such a lustre and glory to it, that it caused a great admiration in all that were present, who believed her to be some Celestial Creature, or [Page 21] rather an uncreated Goddess, and they all had a desire to worship her; for surely, said they, no mortal creature can have such a splendid and transcendent beauty, nor can any have so great a power as she has, to walk upon the Waters, and to destroy whatever she pleases, not onely whole Nations, but a whole World.

The Emperess expressed to her own Countrey­men, who were also her Interpreters to the rest of the Princes that were present, that she would give them an entertainment at the darkest time of night; which being come, the Fire-Stones were light­ed, which made both Air and Seas appear of a bright shining flame, insomuch that they put all Spectators into an extream fright, who verily believed, they should all be destroyed; which the Emperess percei­ving, caused all the Lights of the Fire-Stones to be put out, and onely shewed her self in her Garments of Light: The Bird-men carried her upon their backs into the Air, and there she appear'd as glori­ous as the Sun. Then she was set down upon the Seas again, and presently there was heard the most melo­dious and sweetest Consort of Voices, as ever was heard out of the Seas, which was made by the Fish­men; this Consort was answered by another, made by the Bird-men in the Air, so that it seem'd as if Sea and Air had spoke and answered each other by way of Singing Dialogues, or after the manner [Page 22] of those Plays that are acted by singing Voices.

But when it was upon break of day, the Emperess ended her entertainment, and at full day light all the Princes perceived that she went into the Ship wherein the Prince and Monarch of her Native Country was, the King of ESFI with whom she had several Conferences; and having assured him of the readi­ness of her assistance whensoever he required it, telling him withal, that she wanted no Intelligence, she went forth again upon the Waters, and being in the midst of the Circle made by those Ships that were present, she desired them to draw somewhat nearer, that they might hear her speak; which being done, she declared her self in this following manner:

Great, Heroick, and Famous Monarchs: I came hither to assist the King of ESFI against his Enemies, he being unjustly assaulted by many several Nations, which would fain take away his Hereditary Rights and Prero­gatives of the Narrow Seas; at which Vnjustice Hea­ven was much displeased; and for the Injuries he received from his Enemies, rewarded him with an absolute Po­wer, so that now he is become the Head-Monarch of all this World; which Power, though you may envy, yet you can no ways hinder him; for all those that endeavour to resist his Power, shall onely get loss for their labour, and no Victory for their profit. Wherefore my advice to you all is, to pay him Tribute justly and truly, that you may [Page 23] live Peaceably and Happily, and be rewarded with the Blessings of Heaven, which I wish you from my Soul.

After the Emperess had thus finished her Speech to the Princes of the several Nations of that World, she desired that their Ships might fall back, which being done, her own Fleet came into the Circle, without any visible assistance of Sails or Tide; and her self be­ing entred into her own Ship, the whole Fleet sunk ime­diately into the bottom of the Seas, and left all the Spectators in a deep amazement; neither would she suffer any of her Ships to come above the Waters until she arrived into the Blazing-world.

In time of the Voyage, both the Emperess's and Duchess's Soul were very gay and merry, and some­times they would converse very seriously with each o­ther: amongst the rest of their discourses, the Duchess said, she wondered much at one thing, which was, that since her Majesty had found out a passage out of the Blazing-world into the World she came from, she did not inrich that part of the World where she was born, at least her own Family, when as yet she had enough to inrich the whole World. The Emperess's Soul answered, that she loved her Native Country and her own Family as well as any Creature could do, and that this was the reason why she would not inrich them; for said she, not onely particular Families or Nati­ons, [Page 26] imitated if I can possibly avoid it; yet rather then imi­tate others, I should chuse to be imitated by others; for my nature is such, that I had rather appear worse in singularity, then better in the Mode. If you were not a great Lady, replied the Emperess, you would never pass in the World for a wise Lady; for the World would say your singularities are Vanities. The Duchess's Soul answered, she did not at all regard the censure of this or any other age concerning vanities; but, said she, neither this present, nor any of the fu­ture ages can or will truly say that I am not Vertuous and Chast; for I am confident, all that were or are acquainted with me, and all the Servants which ever I had, will or can upon their Oaths declare my actions no otherwise then Vertuous; and certainly there's none, even of the meanest Degree, which have not their Spies and Witnesses, much more those of the Nobler sort, which seldom or never are without attendants, so that their faults (if they have any) will easily be known, and as easily divulged: Wherefore happy are those Natures that are Honest, Virtuous and Noble, not onely happy to themselves, but happy to their Fami­lies. But, said the Emperess, if you glory so much in your Honesty and Vertue, how comes it that you plead for Dishonest and Wicked persons in your Writings? The Duchess answered, it was onely to shew her Wit, not her Nature.

[Page 27] At last the Emperess arrived into the Blazing World, and coming to her Imperial Palace, you may sooner imagine than expect that I should express the joy which the Emperor had at her safe return; for he lo­ved her beyond his Soul; and there was no love lost, for the Emperess equal'd his Affection with no less love to him. After the time of rejoicing with each other, the Duchess's Soul begg'd leave to return to her Noble Lord; but the Emperor desir'd, That before she departed, she would see how he had em­ployed his time in the Emperess's absence; for he had built Stables and Riding-Houses, and desired to have Horses of Manage, such as, according to the Emperess's Relation, the Duke of Newcastle had: The Emperor enquired of the Duchess, the Form and Structure of her Lord and Husbands Stables and Ri­ding-House. The Duchess answer'd his Majesty, That they were but plain and ordinary; but said she, had my Lord Wealth, I am sure he would not spare it, in rendering his Buildings as Noble as could be made. Hereupon the Emperor shew'd the Duchess the Sta­bles he had built, which were most stately and mag­nificent; among the rest there was one double Sta­ble that held a hundred Horses on a side, the main Building was of Gold, lined with several sorts of precious Materials; the roof was Arched with A­gats, the sides of the Walls were lined with Cor­nelian, the Floor was paved with Amber, the Man­gers [Page 28] were Mother of Pearl, the Pillars, as also the mid­dle Isle or Walk of the Stables, were of Crystal; the Front and Gate was of Turquois, most neatly cut and carved. The riding-house was lined with Sa­phirs, Topases, and the like; the Floor was all of Golden-sand, so finely sifted, that it was extreamly soft, and not in the least hurtful to the Horses feet, and the Door and Frontispiece was of Emeralds, curiously carved.

After the view of these Glorious and Magnisicent Buildings, which the Duchess's Soul was much delight­ed withal, she resolved to take her leave; but the Em­peror desired her to stay yet some short time more, for they both loved her company so well, that they were unwilling to have her depart so soon: Several Confe­rences and Discourses pass'd between them; amongst the rest the Emperor desir'd her advice how to set up a Theatre for Plays. The Duchess confessed her Igno­rance in this Art, telling his Majesty that she knew no­thing of erecting Theatres or Scenes, but what she had by an Immaterial Observation when she was with the Emperess's Soul in the chief City of E. Entering into one of their Theatres, whereof the Emperess could give as much account to His Majesty as her self. But both the Emperor and Emperess told the Duchess, [...] she could give directions how to make Plays. The Duchess answered, that she had as little skill to form a Play after the Mode, as she had to paint or make a [Page 29] Scene for shew. But you have made Playes, re­plied the Emperess: Yes, answered the Duchess, I intended them for Playes; but the Wits of these present times condemned them as uncapable of being represented or acted, because they were not made up according to the Rules of Art; though I dare say, that the Descriptions are as good as any they have writ. The Emperor ask'd, Whether the Property of Playes were not to describe the several humours, actions and fortunes of Mankind? 'Tis so, answered the Duchess: Why then, replied the Emperor, the natural Humours, Actions and Fortunes of Man­kind, are not done by the Rules of Art: But said the Duchess, it is the Art and Method of our Wits to despise all Descriptions of Wit, Humour, Acti­ons and Fortunes that are without such Artificial Rules. The Emperor ask'd, Are those good Playes that are made so Methodically and Artificially? The Duchess answer'd, They were Good according to the Judgment of the Age, or Mode of the Nation, but not according to her Judgment; for truly, said she, in my Opinion, their Playes will prove a Nur­sery of Whining Lovers, and not an Academy or School for Wife, Witty, Noble, and well-beha­ved men. But I, replied the Emperor, desire such a Theatre as may make wise Men; and will have such Descriptions as are Natural, not Artificial. If your Majesty be of that Opinion, said the Duchess's [Page 30] Soul, then my Playes may be acted in your Blazing­World, when they cannot be acted in the Blink­ing-World of Wit; and the next time I come to visit your Majesty, I shall endeavour to order your Majesties Theatre, to present such Playes as my VVit is capable to make. Then the Emperess told the Duchess, That she loved a foolish Verse added to a wise Play. The Duchess answered, That no VVorld in Nature had fitter Creatures for it then the Blazing-VVorld; for, said she, the Lowse­men, the Bird-men, the Spider-and Fox-men, the Ape-men and Satyrs appear in a Verse extraordi­nary pleasant.

Hereupon both the Emperor and Emperess in­treated the Duchess's Soul to stay so long with them, till she had ordered her Theatre, and made Playes and Verses fit for them; for they onely wanted that sort of Recreation; but the Duchess's Soul begg'd their Majesties to give her leave to go into her Na­tive VVorld; for she long'd to be with her dear Lord and Husband, promising, that after a short time she would return again. VVhich being grant­ed, though with much difficulty, she took her leave with all Civility and respect, and so departed from their Majesties.

After the Duchess's return into her own body, she entertained her Lord (when he was pleased to hear such kind of Discourses) with Forreign Rela­tions; [Page 31] but he was never displeased to hear of the Em­peress's kind Commendations, and of the Chara­cters she was pleased to give of him to the Empe­ror. Amongst other Relations she told him all what had past between the Emperess, and the several Mo­narchs of that World whither she went with the Em­peress; and how she had subdued them to pay Tribute and Homage to the Monarch of that Nati­on or Kingdom to which she owed both her Birth and Education. She also related to her Lord what Magnificent Stables and Riding-Houses the Empe­ror had built, and what fine Horses were in the Bla­zing-World, of several shapes and sizes, and how exact their shapes were in each sort, and of many various Colours, and fine Marks, as if they had been painted by Art, with such Coats or Skins, that they had a far greater gloss and smoothness than Sa­tin; and were there but a passage out of the Blazing­World into this, said she, you should not one­ly have some of those Horses, but such Mate­rials, as the Emperor has, to build your Stables and Riding-houses withall; and so much Gold, that I should never repine at your Noble and Generous Gifts. The Duke smilingly answered her, That he was sorry there was no Passage between those two Worlds; but said he, I have alwayes found an Ob­struction to my Good Fortunes.

[Page 32] One time the Duchess chanced to discourse with some of her acquaintance, of the Emperess of the Bla­zing-world, who asked her what Pastimes and Recre­ations Her Majesty did most delight in? The Du­chess answered, that she spent most of her time in the study of Natural Causes and Effects, which washer chief delight and pastime, and that she loved to dis­course sometimes with the most Learned persons of that World; and to please the Emperor and his Nobles, who were all of the Royal Race, she went often a­broad to take the air, but seldom in the day time, al­ways at Night, if it might be called Night; for, said she, the Nights there are as light as Days, by reason of the numerous Blazing-stars, which are very splen­dorcus, onely their Light is whiter then the Sun's Light; and as the Suns Light is hot, so their Light is cool, not so cool as our twinkling Star-light, nor is their Sun-light so hot as ours, but more tempe­rate; And that part of the Blazing-world where the Emperess resides, is always clear, and never subject to any Storms, Tempests, Fogs or Mists, but has onely refreshing Dews that nourish the Earth; the Air of it is sweet and temperate, and, as I said before, as much light in the Suns absence, as in its presence, which makes that time we call Night, more pleasant there then the Day; and sometimes the Emperess goes abroad by Water in Barges, sometimes by Land in Chariots, and sometimes on Horseback; her Royal [Page 33] Chariots are very Glorious; the body is one intire green Diamond; the four small Pillars that bear up the Top-cover, are four white Diamonds, cut in the form thereof; the top or roof of the Chariot is one in­tire blew Diamond, and at the four corners are great springs of Rubies; the seat is made of Cloth of Gold, stuffed with Amber-greece beaten small; the Chariot is drawn by Twelve Unicorns, whose Trappings are all Chains of Pearl; And as for her Barges, they are onely of Gold. Her Guard for State (for she needs none for security, there being no Rebels or Ene­mies) consists of Gyants, but they seldom wait on their Majesties abroad, because their extraordinary height and bigness does hinder their prospect. Her En­tertainment when she is upon the Water, is the Mu­sick of the Fish-and Bird-men, and by Land are Horse­and Foot-matches; for the Emperess takes much de­light in making Race-matches with the Emperor, and the Nobility; some Races are between the Fox- and Ape-men, which sometimes the Satyrs strive to out­run, and some are between the Spider-men and Lice­men. Also there are several Flight-matches, between the several sorts of Bird-men, and the several sorts of Hy-men; and Swimming-matches, between the se­veral sorts of Fish-men. The Emperor, Emperess, and their Nobles, take also great delight to have Colla­tions; for in the Blazing-world, there are most deli­cious Fruits of all sorts, and some such as in this [Page 34] World were never seen nor tasted; for there are most tempting sorts of Fruit: After their Collations are ended, they Dance; and if they be upon the Wa­ter, they dance upon the Water, there lying so ma­ny Fish-men close and thick together, as they can dance very evenly and easily upon their backs, and need not fear drowing. Their Musick, both Vocal and Instrumental, is according to their several places: Upon the Water it is of Water Instruments, as shells filled with Water, and so moved by Art, which is a very sweet and delightful harmony; and those Dan­ces which they dance upon the Water, are, for the most part such as we in this World call Swimming Dances, where they do not lift up their feet high: In Lawns or upon Plains they have VVind-Instruments, but much better then those in our World; And when they dance in the VVoods they have Horn-Instru­ments, which although they are a sort of VVind-In­struments, yet they are of another Fashion then the former; In their Houses they have such Instruments as are somewhat like our Viols, Violins, Theorboes, Lutes, Citherins, Gittars, Harpsichords, and the like, but yet so far beyond them, that the difference cannot well be exprest; and as their places of Dancing and their Musick is different, so is their manner or way of Dancing. In these, and the like Recreations, the Emperor, Emperess, and their Nobility pass their time.

THE EPILOGUE TO THE READER.

BY this Poetical Description, you may perceive, that my ambition is not onely to be Emperess, but Autho­ress of a whole World; and that the Worlds I have made, both the Blazing- and the other Philosophical World, men­tioned in the latter part of this Description, are framed and composed of the most pure, that is, the rationalparts of Matter, which are the parts of my Mind; which Cre­ation was more easily and suddenly effected, then the Con­quests of the two famous Monarchs of the World, Alexan­der and Caesar: Neither have I made such disturbances, and caused so many dissolutions of particulars, otherwise named deaths, as they did; for I have destroyed but some few men in a little Boat, which died through the extremity of cold, and that by the hand of Justice, which was necessitated to punish their crime of stealing away a young and beaute­ous Lady. And in the formation of those Worlds, I take more delight and glory, then ever Alexander or Caesar did in conquering this terrestrial world; and though I have made my Blazing-world, a Peaceable World, allowing it but one

[Page] Religion, one Language, and one Government; yet could I make another World, as full of Factions, Divisions, and Wars, as this is of Peace and Tranquility; and the rational figures of my Mind might express as much courage to fight, as Hector and Achilles had; and be as wise as Nestor, as Eloquent as Ulysses, md as beautiful as Helen. But I esteem­ing Peace before War, Wit before Policy, Honesty be­fore Beauty; instead of the figures of Alexander, Caesar, Hector, Achilles, Nestor, Ulysses, Helen, &c. chose ra­ther the figure of Honest Margaret Newcastle, which now I would not change for all this terrestrivl World; and if any should like the World I have made, and be willing to be my Subjects, they may imagine themselves such, and they are such; I mean, in their Minds, Fancies or Imaginations; but if they cannot endure to be subjects, they may create Worlds of their own, and Govern themselves as they please: But yet let them have a care, not to prove unjust Vsurpers, and to rob me of mine; for concerning the Philosophi­cal World, I am Emperess of it my self; and as for the Bla­zing- world, it having an Emperess already, who rules it with great wisdom and conduct, which Emperess is my dear Platonick Friend; I shall never prove so unjust, treache­rous and unworthy to her, as to disturb her Government, much less to depose her from her Imperial Throne, for the sake of any other; but rather chuse to create another World for another Friend.

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