In this essay, Bacon attempts to take some of the fear out of death by situating it in a larger context. It is not the worst thing in the world, he says; it is just another one of life's processes. He says it is unfortunate that people develop an irrational fear of it. He notes that, despite exaggerated reports that people die in horrible pain and with convulsions, many also die with little bother. People even welcome death as a release from grief or from their world-weariness:
A man would die, though he were neither valiant nor miserable, only upon a weariness to do the same thing so oft over and over.
He also argues that death allows people to love people unconditionally in memory because we no longer envy them.
While Bacon takes a clear-eyed, sensible, and rational view of death (illustrating his role as one of the fathers of the Enlightenment), we also notice that he is still firmly influenced by Renaissance ideas: he relies heavily on the authority of classical authors of antiquity...
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