Lastly, there are idols which have immigrated into men’s minds from the various dogmas of philosophies, and also from wrong laws of demonstration. These I call Idols of the Theatre; because in my judgment all the received systems are but so many stageplays, representing worlds of their own creation after an unreal and scenic fashion. Nor is it only of the systems now in vogue, or only of the ancient sects and philosophies, that I speak: for many more plays of the same kind may yet be composed and in like artificial manner set forth; seeing that errors the most widely different have nevertheless causes for the most part alike. . . . And there is yet a third class [among the Idols of the Theatre], consisting of those who out of faith and veneration mix their philosophy and theology and traditions; among whom the vanity of some has gone so far aside as to seek the origin of science among spirits and genii.1