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Saturday, January 14, 2012

The New Atlantis, by Francis Bacon

Bacon's attempt at Utopia. A ship loses its way and winds up sighting land who knows where. The citizens of this land treat the sailors kindly and generously, and relate an account of their land. In the land is a House of Salomon, where experiments are carried out. In his list of experiments Bacon was apparently prescient (thus says the introduction; I know not enough science or history of science to make such a determination).

I distrust totalitarianism in its different manifestations, even when it promotes what I like, such as the honoring of those who bear and beget children. In Bacon's land every man who has at least 35 living descendants over the age of three gets publicly feted at state expense.

This work was never finished.

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