Sir Peter Medawar
On ``The Effecting of All Things Possible''
Presidential Address delivered on September 3, 1969, at the Exeter Meeting of the British Association.
See, for example, Herbert Grierson, Cross Currents in English Literature of the Seventeenth Century (Gloucester, Mass. 1959); Basil Willey, The Seventeenth Century Background (New York, 1953); G. N. Clark, The Seventeenth Century, 2nd ed. (New York, 1953); W. Notestein, The English People on the Eve of Colonization (New York, 1954); Marjorie Hope Nicolson, Mountain Gloom and Mountain Glory (New York, 1963); Maurice Ashley, England in the Seventeenth Century, 3rd ed. (Maryland [n.d. --- CRS]); H. R. Trevor-Roper, Religion, the Reformation and Social Change (London, 1967) [Chapters 1--4 of which were published in paperback as The European Witch-Craze of the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries, and Other Essays (New York, 1969) --- CRS].
George Williamson, ``Mutability, decay and seventeenth century melancholy,'' J. Eng. Lit. History, vol. 2 (1935), pp. 121--50.
Christopher Hill, Intellectual Origins of the English Revolution (New York, 1965).
Marjorie Hope Nicolson, ``Two Voices: Science and Literature,'' The Rockefeller Review, vol. no. 3, pp. 1--11, 1963.
See, for example, Margery Puver, The Royal Society: Concept and Creation (Cambridge, Mass., 1967) and a number of papers in vol. 23, no. 2 (December 1968) of Notes and Records of the Royal Society.
For England in particular, see Christopher Hill, op. cit.; F. R. Johnson, Astronomical Thought in Renaissance Britain (Baltimore, 1937).
England at the time of the Armada was a prosperous country, and it became so again in the reign of Queen Anne; the period I am discussing, however, was marked by a high level of unemployment and a number of major economic slumps, not to mention the English Civil War; moreover the reputation of England abroad sank to a specially low level in the latter part of James I's reign and during the reign of Charles I. This was also the period of the great emigrations to Massachusetts.
William Lecky, The Rise and Influence of Rationalism in Europe (London, 1865); see especially H. R. Trevor-Roper, op. cit.
J. V. Andrae's Description of the Republic of Christianopolis was first published in 1619 (see F. Held, Christianopolis, an Ideal State of the Seventeenth Century, Urbana, 1914); Tommaso Campanella published The City of the Sun in 1623 (English translation by T. W. Halliday in Ideal Commonwealths, London 1885). There is an extensive literature on Utopian and chiliastic speculation, some of it rather feeble. The following are specially relevant to the idea of progress and human improvement: J. B. Bury, The Idea of Progress (New York, 1932); E. L. Tuveson, Millennium and Utopia (Berkeley, 1949); Norman Cohn, The Pursuit of the Millennium (New York, 1957) [but see the third edition (New York, 1970) --- CRS].
In a sermon delivered in Whitehall, February 24, 1625.
In Thomas Browne, Hydriotaphia, his discourse on urn-burial. For a history of the idea of time, see S. Toulmin and J. Goodfield, The Discovery of Time (New York, 1965).
An Apologie of the Power and Providence of God (Oxford, 1627), an answer to Godfrey Goodman's The Fall of Man (London, 1616).
See D. C. Allen, ``The degeneration of man and Renaissance pessimism,'' Studies in Philology, vol. 35, pp. 202--27, 1938.
Louis le Roy's remarkable work, addressed to ``all men who thinke that the future belongeth unto them'' became known in England through Robert Ashley's translation of 1594 (Of the Interchangeable Course or Variety of Things).
Cited by Hakewill, op. cit.
Experimental Philosophy, Preface (London, 1664); cf. John Ray, The Wisdom of God Manifested in the Works of Creation, (2nd ed. pp. 164--165; 1st ed., London, 1691).
William Godwin, Enquiry Concerning Political Justice (3rd ed., London, 1797; 1st ed., 1793). Cf. Adam Ferguson, An Essay on the History of Civil Society (Edinburgh, 1767).
See my Jaynes Lectures, Induction and Intuition in Scientific Thought (Philadelphia and London, 1969). The idea of ``stretched experience'' and of the experimenter as the ``arch-master'' who ``completes experience,'' comes from John Dee's Mathematical Preface to Henry Billingsley's English translation of Euclid (London, 1570).
C. Day Lewis, A Hope for Poetry, p. 107 (London, 1934).
This simile occurs more than once in Hobbes; the passage I have in mind is from his Human Nature (London, 1650).