OF THOSE IMAGES WHICH ARE PRESENTED TO OUR EYES IN MIRRORS.
EMPEDOCLES says that these images are caused by certain
effluvias which, meeting together and insisting upon the
superficies of the mirror, are perfected by that fiery quality
emitted by the said mirror, which transmutes withal the air
that surrounds it. Democritus and Epicurus, that the
specular appearances are formed by the subsistence of the
images which flow from our eyes; these fall upon the mirror and remain, while the light rebounds to the eye. The
followers of Pythagoras explain it by the reflection of
the sight; for our sight being extended (as it were) to the
brass, and meeting with the smooth dense surface thereof
it is struck back, and caused to return upon itself: the
same appears in the hand, when it is stretched out and
then brought back again to the shoulder. Any one
may apply these instances to explain the manner of seeing.