Studies serve for delight, for ornament, and for ability. Their chief us for delight, is in prolateness and retiring, for ornament is in discourse, and for ability, is in the judgement and disposition of business. For expert men can execute, and perhaps judge of particulars. One by one, but the general counsels, and the plots and marshaling of some affairs, come best from those that are learned. To spend too much time in studies is sloth; to use them too much for ornament is affectation; to make judgement wholly by their rules, is the humour of a scholar. They perfect nature and are perfected by experience: for natural abilities are like natural plants that need pruning by study; and studies themselves do give forth directions too much at large, except they be bounded in by experience. Crafty men condemn studies; simple men admire them; and wise men use them; for they teach not their own use; but that is a wisdom without them, and above them, won by observation. Read not to contradict and confute, nor to believe and take for granted, nor to find talk and discourse, but to weigh and consider. Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested, that is, some books are to be read only in parts; others to be read but not curiously, and some to be read wholly and with diligence and attention. Some books also may be read by deputy, and extracts made of them by others, but that would be only in the less important arguments and the meaner sort of books, else distilled books are like common distilled waters, flashy things. Reading makes a full man; conference a ready man; and writing an exact man. And therefore if a man writes little; he had need have a great memory; if he confers little, he had need have a present wit, and if he reads littles, he had need have much cunning, to seem to know that he doth not.