BACON, FRANCIS, Baron Verulam, Viscount St. Albans. Instauratio magna [Novum organum]. London: [B. Norton and] J. Bill, 1620. Folio, 282 x 183 mm. (11 1/8 x 7 3/16 in.), seventeenth or early eighteenth-century dark brown calf over pasteboards, covers with triple blind fillet border, spine in six plain compartments, crudely diced in blind at head and tail, later red-sprinkling to edges, endpapers of printer's waste from an octavo commentary on the Book of Romans, discreet restoration to corners and head and tail of spine, joints and extremities rubbed, blank fore-margin of title with red ink splashes from speckling of edges, very slight marginal soiling and small light marginal dampstain to first few leaves, faint narrow dampstain to extreme outer margins of a few leaves, marginal soiling to Tt6; folding chemise, calf-backed slipcase. FIRST EDITION, second issue, with e3 cancelled and its contents reprinted on e4 (blank in the first issue) with an added errata and Norton's name omitted from the colophon, with the blank leaves 1 and c4, engraved title by Simon van de Passe, woodcut initials, typographic ornaments. Gibson 103b; Grolier/Horblit 8b; Dibner, Heralds of Science, 80; PMM 119; STC 1163. Title signed "C M", one or two neat early marginal annotations and corrections.
"Bacon conceived a massive plan for the reorganization of scientific method and gave purposeful thought to the relation of science to public and social life. His pronouncement 'I have taken all knowledge to be my province' is the motto of his work. The frontispiece to his magnum opus shows a ship in full sail passing through the Pillars of Hercules from the old to the new world. It symbolizes the vision of its author whose ambitious proposal was: 'a total reconstruction of sciences, arts and all human knowledge... to extend the power and dominion of the human race... over the universe.'"--Printing and the Mind of Man.