Roger Bacon was born in Somerset in the year 1214. He displayed a fascinating precocity during childhood and studies maths and medicine in Oxford and Paris after entering the order of St Francis. He returned to England and focused on philosophy, writing Latin, Greek and Hebrew grammars. He became a pioneer in astrology and some of his developments in mathematical scientists are well worth noting. He spoke of boats which may be propelled without oars, or cars that didn't need horses and machines that might fly in the air.
His discoveries helped with the development of gunpowder, and he is responsible for some of the biggest discoveries in pure chemistry. He began to form a strong belief in the philosopher's stone, believing gold could be fortified to such a degree that death could be prevented. Bacon was viewed with a huge amount of suspicion, and he was persecuted, evicted from his order and forced to flee to Paris. He was banned from writing, but when Pope Clement IV invited him to break his enforced silece in 1266 he wrote Opus Majus, Opus Minus and Opus Tertium. He was allowed to return to Oxford and continue his studies of science.
He went on to pen a compendium of philosophy, and as its subject matter failed to please the ruling powers he found his books burned and he was imprisoned for fourteen years. He was eventually freed in 1292 and died in 1294.