Roger Bacon, O.F.M. (c. 1214–1294) (scholastic accolade Doctor Mirabilis, meaning "wonderful teacher"), was an English philosopher and Franciscan friar who placed considerable emphasis on the study of nature through empirical methods. He is sometimes credited, mainly starting in the 19th century, as one of the earliest European advocates of the modern scientific method inspired by the works of Aristotle and later Islamic works, such as the works of Muslim scientist Alhazen. However, more recent reevaluations emphasize that he was essentially a medieval thinker, with much of his "experimental" knowledge obtained from books, in the scholastic tradition. A survey of the reception of Bacon's work over centuries found that it often reflects the concerns and controversies central to the receivers.
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“Argument is conclusive ... but ... it does not remove doubt, so that the mind may rest in the sure knowledge of the truth, unless it finds it by the method of experiment.... For if any man who never saw fire proved by satisfactory arguments that fire burns ... his hearers mind would never be satisfied, nor would he avoid the fire until he put his hand in it ... that he might learn by experiment what argument taught.”
—Roger Bacon (c. 12141294)
“I say that Roger Casement
Did what he had to do,
He died upon the gallows
But that is nothing new.”
—William Butler Yeats (18651939)
“Histories make men wise; poets witty; the mathematics subtle; natural philosophy deep; moral grave; logic and rhetoric able to contend.”
—Francis Bacon (15611626)