Francis Bacon, 1st Viscount Saint Alban, (22 January 1561 – 9 April 1626) was an author, jurist, philosopher, scientist, statesman and lawyer based, in his later years, in Hertfordshire. He was the son of Sir Nicholas Bacon, Lord keeper of the great seal, and grandson (on his mother's side) of the humanist Anthony Cooke. His ascent through a career in politics was almost as fast as his descent; he was knighted in 1603, appointed Lord Chancellor and Baron Verulam in 1618, and Viscount St Alban in 1621. Shortly afterwards, he admitted to charges (by parliament) of accepting bribes and he was fined, imprisoned and then banished from the court. Though later pardoned by the king, his public life ended in disgrace and, as he had no heirs, his peerages became extinct when he died.It is in the wake of his public disgrace that he retired to his home in Old Gorhambury House, Hertfordshire. Here he pursued literary endeavours, working on pieces such as New Atlantis, The History of Life and Death, the History of Henry VII and translations of The Advancement of Learning. In both his literary and scientific works, it is clear that Bacon believed in the betterment of human society through an enthusiastic pursuit of truth and good will alongside the advancement of science. Influenced by fellow Hertfordshire man and utopian visionary Sir Thomas More, the fictional inhabitants of his utopian vision set out in New Atlantis exhibited 'generosity and enlightenment, dignity and splendor, piety and public spirit', characteristics which he desired of his own country. His idealistic view of fairness and charity is echoed in the Bacon family motto, "Mediocria Firma", which means "modest things are surest". Bacon died of pneumonia on the 9th of April 1626 at Arundel Mansion in Highgate, leaving New Atlantis unfinished. Some people consider his experiments with the 'conservation and induration of bodies', which required him to deal with frost and snow, contiguous to his death. A few months after his funeral, thirty two elegies from contemporary great minds were collected together and published in a volume titled Manes Verulamiani. There is a monument to Francis Bacon at his burial place, St Michael's Church, in St Albans.