Francis Bacon is an accidental recurring theme in conversations between me and a sportswriter friend of mine in the Texas capital. Yes, you read that right, a sportswriter friend and I bring up Francis Bacon with startling frequency.*
Anyway, Francis Bacon is the father of the scientific method (which I knew) who wore about a half dozen other hats including philosopher, lawyer, statesman, author and jurist (which, apart from the philosopher aspect, I did not). He was knighted in 1603 after finding favour with James I and served as the attorney general for England from 1616 – 1618 when he was appointed Lord Chancellor, a post he held until corruption charges were brought against him three years later. It was most after the people in power decided he should no longer be allowed to hold office that Bacon settled into philosophy (or really an approach to philosophy since he didn’t really have a philosophy of his own) and the scientific method.**
*By which I mean he has come up three times in the last six months, but I can assure you that at no other point in my life has Francis Bacon ever come up outside of the classroom.