Category Archives: Novum Organum

BACON: Novum Organum [Preface, Book I]

Francis Bacon wrote and published Novum Organum in 1620. The subject of the work is the method by which one ought to seek truth. According to Bacon, men ought to begin with observations – i.e. the senses – and then move incrementally from intermediate axioms to the most general axioms. This process is called induction, which is the method employed by modern science. For example, a man observes that all cats that he has encountered have tails. He concludes that it is highly probable that all cats have tails. The contrary method is called deduction. The process of deduction is when general principles are proposed and then used to assert particular truths. For example, all cats have a tail. X is a cat. X has a tail. To summarize the difference between the two methodologies, induction begins with particulars and moves to generalities while deduction begins with generalities and moves to particulars. Continue reading BACON: Novum Organum [Preface, Book I]