Enjoy the snow, but be sure to avoid conducting experiments while it's frigid outside(—or you might die! Sir Francis Baconbest known for his work as a statesman, philosopher, and bearer of a pork-lover's dream namealso helped develop that pesky scientific method you probably hated in grade school. But when Bacon tried out his methods in real life, they wound up killing him!

According to John Aubrey's Brief Lives, which dished out plenty of gossip about Renaissance-era individuals, Bacon died most ignominiously in 1626, thanks to an incident with frozen poultry. Interestingly, the "Father of Modern Science" was reportedly gay, but unfortunately that was de-emphasized by many of his biographers. But not Aubrey, who says he got this account from another philosopher, a Bacon BFF, Thomas Hobbes. Aubrey claims that Bacon was out and about in a carriage on a cold day with another close friend, Dr. Witherborne, Sir Francis suddenly wondered whether snow would act as a preservative the way salt did. You know, basic thoughts you get when you're on a carriage ride through London.

Bacon and Witherborne popped out of their carriage, bought a hen from a poor woman (they made her gut the bird, of course), and shoved snow into the dead animal's cavities. While helping with the latter task, however, Bacon got so sick he couldn't make the journey home, so he went to a friend's house. 

Thankfully, William Larkin's portrait of Sir Francis Bacon shows him as he was in life, not as he was, in chicken-y death. 

But his hosts put him in "a damp bed" that hadn't been used in more than a year, and as a result, he died a few days later, Aubrey reports, of "suffocation." What Aubrey dubs "suffocation" was actually pneumonia; as Who's Who in Gay and Lesbian History wryly observes, "the chicken was preserved, but Bacon caught pneumonia and died."

Thanks to Aubrey's account, the last memory of Bacon was of him as a martyr to science, even in his final hours. Whether those details on his demise are entirely accurate, however, remain unknown.