Roger Bacon was an English monk as well as a member of the Franciscans
order. he was educated in Oxford Paris, and taught Philosophy for seven
years in Paris. He was known to some as Doctor mirabilis, the wonderful
doctor; to other as Friar Bacon; and still to others as a necromancer,
Bacon was respected for the powers he presumably possessed.
Most of what is known about Bacon comes from autobiographical
references in his own writings. After his teaching he went to Oxford,
where he was influenced by the ideas of Robert Grosseteste. At about 1257,
Bacon became a Franciscan friar. Bacon had a very vivid imagination as a
result of his outspokenness and unorthodox opinions he often had
difficulties with the superiors of his order. His imagination, and
understanding was far beyond his time. He wrote about boats, cars, and
airplanes more than seven centuries ago. The reaction of his fellow monks
could only be imagined as thinking that Bacon was crazy.
In 1267, Pope Clement IV, requested that Bacon prepare his three
works, the Opus mainus, Opus minus, and Opus tertium, in which this
suggested proposals for a reform of education. He argued that the study of
the natural world which used observation and exact measurement was the
best foundation for learning religion. In place of the normal education in
medieval universities, he had recommended the study of languages,
mathematics alchemy, and sciences. He later produced Compendium the study
of Philosophy, and Compendium the study of Theology.
The minister general of the Franciscans suspected Bacon of
promoting "dangerous novelties," and Bacon was imprisoned from 1277 to
1279. His own brothers envied him, giving him the reputation as a
"sorcerer" and "wander worker". As a result of his own ambitions Bacon
eventually died in prison. Years later since he had speculated about
things such as gunpowder, flying machines and mechanically driven
carriages, he became celebrated for his foresight. Bacon is among many
literary people who have had an influence on all of scientific thought,
and the outlook of the subject.