Francis Bacon (22 January 1561 – 9 April 1626) was an English philosopher and statesman who served as Attorney General and as Lord Chancellor of England. His works are credited with developing the scientific method and remained influential through the scientific revolution.
Bacon has been called the father of empiricism.His works argued for the possibility of scientific knowledge based only upon inductive reasoning and careful observation of events in nature. Most importantly, he argued science could be achieved by use of a sceptical and methodical approach whereby scientists aim to avoid misleading themselves.
Francis Bacon’s philosophy is displayed in the vast and varied writings he left, which might be divided into three great branches: scientific, religious and juridical.
Although few of his proposals for law reform were adopted during his lifetime, Bacon’s legal legacy was considered as having influenced the drafting of the Napoleonic Code as well as the law reforms introduced by 19th-century British Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel.
Harvey Wheeler attributed to Bacon, in Francis Bacon’s Verulamium—the Common Law Template of The Modern in English Science and Culture, the creation of these distinguishing features of the modern common law system: using cases as repositories of evidence about the “unwritten law”; determining the relevance of precedents by exclusionary principles of evidence and logic; treating opposing legal briefs as adversarial hypotheses about the application of the “unwritten law” to a new set of facts.
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