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BACON—BACTERIOLOGY

surroundings, and Bacon is not an exception. Those who take up such an extreme position regarding his merits have known too little of the state of contemporary science, and have limited their comparison to the works of the scholastic theologians. We never find in Bacon himself any consciousness of originality; he is rather a keen and systematic thinker, working in a well-beaten track, from which his contemporaries were being drawn by theology and metaphysics.

Bibliography.—The best work on Roger Bacon is perhaps that of E. Charles, Roger Bacon, sa vie, ses ouvrages, ses doctrines d’après des textes inédits (1861). Against the somewhat enthusiastic estimate and modern interpretation given in this work, are Schneider in his Roger Bacon, Eine Monographie (Augsburg, 1873); K. Werner, Die Psychol. ... des Roger Bacon and Die Kosmologie ... des Roger Bacon (Vienna, 1879); S. A. Hirsch, Early English Hebraists (1899); Book of Essays (London, 1905), deals with Bacon as a Hebraist. The new matter contained in the publications of Charles and Brewer was summarized by H. Siebert, Roger Bacon: Inaugural Dissertation (Marburg, 1861). Cf. also J. K. Ingram, On the Opus Majus of Bacon (Dublin, 1858); Cousin, “Fragments phil. du moyen âge” (reprinted from Journal des savans, 1848); E. Saisset, “Précurseurs et disciples de Descartes,” pp. 1-58 (reprinted from Revue de deux mondes, 1861); K. Prantl, Gesch. der Logik, iii. 120-129 (a severe criticism of Bacon’s logical doctrines); Held, Roger Bacon’s praktische Philosophie (Jena, 1881); Karl Pohl, Das Verhältniss d. Philos. zur Theol. bei Roger Bacon (Neustrelitz, 1893); articles in Westminster Review, lxxxi. 1 and 512; A. Parrot, Roger Bacon et ses contemporains (1894); E. Fluegel, Roger Bacons Stellung in d. Gesch. d. Philos. (1902); S. Vogl, Die Physik Roger Bacos (1906). For the popular legend see Famous Historie of Fryer Bacon (London, 1615; reproduced in Thoms, Early Prose Romances, iii.); R. Greene’s Friar Bacon and Friar Bungay (1587 or 1588), and in publication of the Percy Society, vol. xv. 1844, A Piece of Friar Bacon’s Brazen Heade's Prophesie (1604). For Bacon as a classical scholar see J. E. Sandys, Hist. of Class. Schol. (2nd ed., 1906), cxxxi.  (R. Ad.; X.) 


BACON (through the O. Fr. bacon, Low Lat. baco, from a Teutonic word cognate with “back,” e.g. O. H. Ger. pacho, M. H. Ger. backe, buttock, flitch of bacon), the flesh of the sides and back of the pig, cured by salting, drying, pickling and smoking.

BACONTHORPE [Bacon, Baco, Bacconius], JOHN (d. 1346), known as “the Resolute Doctor,” a learned Carmelite monk, was born at Baconthorpe in Norfolk. He seems to have been the grandnephew of Roger Bacon (Brit. Mus. Add. MS. 19. 116). Brought up in the Carmelite monastery of Blakeney, near Walsingham, he studied at Oxford and Paris, where he was known as “Princeps” of the Averroists. Renan, however, says that he merely tried to justify Averroism against the charge of heterodoxy. In 1329 he was chosen twelfth provincial of the English Carmelites. He appears to have anticipated Wycliffe in advocating the subordination of the clergy to the king. In 1333 he was sent for to Rome, where, we are told, he first maintained the pope’s authority in cases of divorce; but this opinion he retracted. He died in London in 1346. His chief work, Doctoris resoluti Joannis Bacconis Anglici Carmelitae radiantissimi opus super quattuor sententiarum libris (published 1510), has passed through several editions. Nearly three centuries later, it was still studied at Padua, the last home of Averroism, and Lucilio Vanini speaks of him with great veneration.

See Brucker, Hist. Crit. iii. 865; Stöckl, Phil. d. Mittel. ii. 1044-1045; Hauréau, Phil. Scol. ii. 476; K. Prantl, Ges. d. Logik, iii. 318. For information as to his life, not found otherwise and of doubtful accuracy, see J. B. de Lezana’s Annales Sacri, iv.

BACSANYI, JANOS (1763–1845), Hungarian poet, was born at Tapolcza on the 11th of May 1763. In 1785 he published his first work, a patriotic poem, The Valour of the Magyars. In the same year he obtained a situation as clerk in the treasury at Kaschau, and there, in conjunction with other two Hungarian patriots, edited the Magyar Museum, which was suppressed by the government in 1792. In the following year he was deprived of his clerkship; and in 1794, having taken part in the conspiracy of Bishop Martinovich, he was thrown into the state prison of the Spielberg, near Brünn, where he remained for two years. After his release he took a considerable share in the Magyar Minerva, a literary review, and then proceeded to Vienna, where he obtained a post in the bank, and married. In 1809 he translated Napoleon’s proclamation to the Magyars, and, in consequence of this anti-Austrian act, had to take refuge in Paris. After the fall of Napoleon he was given up to the Austrians, who allowed him to reside at Linz, on condition of never leaving that town. He published a collection of poems at Pest, 1827 (2nd ed. Buda, 1835), and also edited the poetical works of Anyos and Faludi. He died at Linz on the 12th of May 1845.

BACTERIOLOGY. The minute organisms which are commonly called “bacteria”[1] are also known popularly under other designations, e.g. “microbes,” “micro-organisms,” “microphytes,” “bacilli,” “micrococci.” All these terms, including the usual one of bacteria, are unsatisfactory; for “bacterium,” “bacillus” and “micrococcus” have narrow technical meanings, and the other terms are too vague to be scientific. The most satisfactory designation is that proposed by Nägeli in 1857, namely “schizomycetes,” and it is by this term that they are usually known among botanists; the less exact term, however, is also used and is retained in this article since the science is commonly known as “bacteriology.” The first part of this article deals with the general scientific aspects of the subject, while a second part is concerned with the medical aspects.

I. The Study of Bacteria

The general advances which have been made of late years in the study of bacteria are clearly brought to mind when we reflect that in the middle of the 19th century these organisms were only known to a few experts and in a few forms as curiosities of the microscope, chiefly interesting for their minuteness and motility. They were then known under the name of “animalculae,” and were confounded with all kinds of other small organisms. At that time nothing was known of their life-history, and no one dreamed of their being of importance to man and other living beings, or of their capacity to produce the profound chemical changes with which we are now so familiar. At the present day, however, not only have hundreds of forms or species been described, but our knowledge of their biology has so extended that we have entire laboratories equipped for their study, and large libraries devoted solely to this subject. Furthermore, this branch of science has become so complex that the bacteriological departments of medicine, of agriculture, of sewage, &c., have become more or less separate studies.

The schizomycetes or bacteria are minute vegetable organisms devoid of chlorophyll and multiplying by repeated bipartitions. They consist of single cells, which may be spherical, oblong or cylindrical in shape, Definition.or of filamentous or other aggregates of cells. They are characterized by the absence of ordinary sexual reproduction and by the absence of an ordinary nucleus. In the two last-mentioned characters and in their manner of division the bacteria resemble Schizophyceae (Cyanophyceae or blue-green algae), and the two groups of Schizophyceae and Schizomycetes are usually united in the class Schizophyta, to indicate the generally received view that most of the typical bacteria have been derived from the Cyanophyceae. Some forms, however, such as “Sarcina,” have their algal analogues in Palmellaceae among the green algae, while Thaxter’s group of Myxobacteriaceae suggests a relationship with the Myxomycetes. The existence of ciliated micrococci together with the formation of endospores—structures not known in the Cyanophyceae—reminds us of the flagellate Protozoa, e.g. Monas, Chromulina. Resemblances also exist between the endospores and the spore-formations in the Saccharomycetes, and if Bacillus inflatus, B. ventriculus, &c., really form more than one spore in the cell, these analogies are strengthened. Schizomycetes such as Clostridium, Plectridium, &c., where the sporiferous cells enlarge, bear out the same argument, and we must not forget that there are extremely minute “yeasts,” easily mistaken for Micrococci, and that yeasts occasionally form only one spore in the cell.

Nor must we overlook the possibility that the endospore-formation in non-motile bacteria more than merely resembles the development of azygospores in the Conjugatae, and some Ulothricaceae, if reduced in size, would resemble them. Meyer regards them as chlamydospores, and Klebs as “carpospores” or possibly chlamydospores similar to the endospores of yeast.

  1. Gr. βακτήριον, Lat. bacillus, little rod or stick.