Robert Boyle (1627-91): Work-diary III (Aphorisms in English, 1647)

Content: Moralistic and theological aphorisms in English from c. 1647-9, preceded by the heading 'L.D.'

General Information


Work-diary entries

/BP 44, fol. 114/

[Authorial heading]:
L. D.

Entry 1: Editorial notes:

I beg your Pardon for making you so slow a return of my H. T. for your exc. Letter of the 26 of Dec. & I shud have needed your pardon much more, had your favors in it been lesse: The excesse of them in such variety of obligations; justifys me in the leisure I take to taste & enjoy ech endearing Circumstance a part: weighing & comparing with one another the several Delights I owe you.


Entry 2: Editorial notes:

I shud despaire of efficacy to convince you by anything that can flow from a Pen annimate but with such Dull reflections as mine.


Entry 3: Editorial notes:

Lest I shud incurre the Taxe, either of Hyp. if I shud by Sil. confesse an assent in matters of Rel. where I am not convinc't: or of Perversenesse shud I dissent without showing cause for it.


Entry 4: Editorial notes:

Could I admit of such a Doctrine, that in the Affaire of our Faith I ought to be swayed by any humane Auth. either of one or many; I shud at this instant publish a Valediction to my Op. what great wits soever <may> sustayne them; as willingly as I do here grant you the Preheminence above the hihest I have knowne.


Entry 5: Editorial notes:

Their veracity I attribute infinitely unto, from a due Cons. of all those happie Circ. wherewith your Eloq. authorizes it.


Entry 6: Editorial notes:

You cannot aggravate their Impiety enough.


Entry 7: Editorial notes:

If any former slip of my Pen can be but wrested to such an injustice, let me purge my selfe by a solemn Rec. But I hope my words imported not any such sense, I am sure my sense intended not any such words.


Entry 8: Editorial notes:

Wherein by 2 restrictions I am safely protected from any just Imp. of so injust a Negative. The one by the very Exc. of many Cases attributes to their Test. a Validity in many: the other allowes it an induceing Power in the very denying it a Convincing one: & tends no way to an Exclusion but onely to a Qualification of their Evidence.


/BP 44, fol. 114v/

Entry 9: Editorial notes:

Wherein I can in no wise Venture to give Sentence upon their Evidence


Entry 10: Editorial notes:

Little of materiall or waighty can be said on this subjecte that his rare & piercing observation has not anticipated.


Entry 11: Editorial notes:

And this I hope I may safely affirme without wrong either to their abilitys or good Wills.


Entry 12: Editorial notes:

In which I have prevented the need of Examples by many instances both of &c.


Entry 13: Editorial notes:

Some of which I take to be Beames, all more then Moates, fit to be removed out of their Eyes, before we can with reason resigne up our Senses to their Guidance & Mamid [blank space in MS, 10 characters] Aire-beaters


Entry 14: Editorial notes:

No marvell that to decide such they shud want wills, having neither meanes nor occasion to actuate their abilitys; or that they shud want abilitys, having noe provocations that might stimulate their wills.


Entry 15: Editorial notes:

These were the Considerations that possest me when &c.


Entry 16: Editorial notes:

Shud I [d] grant them all to be true, it woud not follow that they were sufficinet: till it did appeare, (which I think never will, tho for the present we will suppose it.)


Entry 17: Editorial notes:

My former Instances I conceive have sufficiently evinc't.


Entry 18: Editorial notes:

Will bring you into a Circle (of Augmentation)


Entry 19: Editorial notes:

To border upon Impossibility.


Entry 20: Editorial notes:

Are delivered by such a Multitude of men, as contayne in them all the Variety of Dispositions & Affections incident to the Nature of man.


Entry 21: Editorial notes:

The [Unfrustrable] apetence of Truth an appropriate of humane nature.


Entry 22: Editorial notes:

Which for brevity sake I note onely in the margent, pronounce to me in as cleere a sence as may be, the sufficiency of Scripture & superfluity of relying upon Traditions.


Entry 23: Editorial notes:

The organ then of our motion to hev'n being Faith & that Faith the strongest assent of our soules; the Ground upon which it must March ought to be no lesse /BP 44, fol. 115/Solide then Infallibility: since the strongest assent cannot be given but upon the strongest Inducement.


Entry 24: Editorial notes:

And lastly, I beleeve, that all Points whatsoever of Christian Religion[?] are there set downe as perspicuously & as cleerly intelligible to all Capacitys, as they are [d] cleerly necessary to be beleeved by all: & that God's Mercy in the Merits of Christ, accepting alike the fayth resultant from the Dark mists of the ignorant, & from the Cleerest intelligence of the Learned; the Lambe may wade to his Blisse, through the same water throu which the Elephant may swimme.


Entry 25: Editorial notes:

Besides God's equallizing Capacitys by his acceptance.


Entry 26: Editorial notes:

Let me have your Patience or your Pardon a Little farther. [blank space in MS, 6-7 characters] Lucida intervalla


Entry 27: Editorial notes:

In the happyer as well as more Monarchicall Condition of [d] &c.


Entry 28: Editorial notes:

Since it was a Forme not chosen for the best, but impos'd by adversity & oppression: which in the beginning forc't the Church from what it wisht to what it might.


Entry 29: Editorial notes:

How Camelion like that has been, how various is as visible as greene.


Entry 30: Editorial notes:

Not the safest Course, for he would be found packing towards &c.


Entry 31: Editorial notes:

The Ballances being so equally pois'd that the overbearance of either scale is hardly perceptible.


Entry 32: Editorial notes:

As we do in the other most true & prime Emanation of Nature, Friendship, which on your part to me I am [...] must needs spring from thence; since my small merit affords no other motive: & as for mine to you, I am sure it is impossible without an entire concurrence of all the forces of sympathy, for any &c


Entry 33: Editorial notes:

Differencyes being rightly reconcilable onely by such Mediums as both Partyes consent in.


/BP 44, fol. 115v/

Entry 34: Editorial notes:

Ces dernieres Preuves de son amour plus claires que les premieres de sa haine et je ne vous avouerois pas la Trahison que <je> vous [d] fis; si mon dessein n'eust esté tres-bon, & le succez tres advantageux pour vous.