IDOLA THEATRI: .IDOLS OF THE THEATRE
Francisco de Goya y Lucientes, Disparate desordenado (Disordered Folly), 1819. Engraving/aquatint.
Lastly, there are idols which have crept into men’s minds from the various dogmas of peculiar systems of philosophy, and also from the perverted rules of demonstration, and these we denominate idols of the theatre. For we regard all the systems of philosophy hitherto received or imagined, as so many plays brought out and performed, creating fictitious and theatrical worlds...
Francis Bacon, Novum Organum (1620) Basil Montague, ed. and trans. The Works, 3 vols. (Philadelphia: Parry & MacMillan, 1854), 343-71. Aphorism 44.