A Book of Gems Choice selections from the writings of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 323

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Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 3 [of 3]

Page 8
Page 15
_That within [___] months after the passing such act, the house of representatives, that happen to be sitting within that time, or that shall be especially for that purpose convened, may and shall choose members for the grand council, in the following proportion, that is to say,_ Massachussett's Bay 7 New Hampshire 2 Connecticut 5 Rhode Island 2 New York .
Page 23
_ By communicating the accounts yearly to each assembly, they will be satisfied of the prudent and honest conduct of their representatives in the grand council.
Page 49
Let this serve as an excuse for the author of these sheets, if he needs any, for bestowing them on the transactions of a colony, till of late hardly mentioned in our annals; in point of establishment one of the last upon the British list, and in point of rank one of the most subordinate, as being not only subject, in common with the rest, to the crown, but also to the claims of a _proprietary_, who thinks he does them _honour_ enough in governing them by _deputy_; consequently so much further removed from the royal eye, and so much the more exposed to the pressure of self-interested _instructions_.
Page 52
An aid of 350_l.
Page 76
You would have the French left in Canada, to exercise your military virtue, and make you a warlike people, that you may have more confidence to embark in schemes of disobedience, and greater ability to support them! You have tasted too, the sweets of TWO OR THREE MILLIONS sterling per annum spent among you by our fleets and forces, and you are unwilling to be without a pretence for kindling up another war, and thereby occasioning a repetition of the same delightful doses! But, gentlemen, allow us to understand _our_ interest a little likewise: we shall remove the French from Canada, that you may live in peace, and we be no more drained by your quarrels.
Page 140
And his majesty, if he should take the trouble of looking over our disputes (to which the petitioners, to save themselves a little pains, modestly and decently refer him) where will he, for twenty years past, find any but _proprietary_ disputes concerning proprietary interests; or disputes that have been connected with and arose from them? The petition proceeds to assure his majesty, "that this province (except from the Indian ravages) enjoys the _most perfect internal tranquillity_!"--Amazing! what! the most perfect tranquillity! when there have been three atrocious riots within a few months! when in two of them, horrid murders were committed on twenty innocent persons; and in the third, no less than one hundred and forty like murders were meditated, and declared to be intended, with as many more as should be occasioned by any opposition! when we know that these rioters and murderers have none of them been punished, have never been prosecuted, have not even been apprehended! when we are frequently told, that they intend still to execute their purposes, as soon as the protection of the king's forces is withdrawn! Is our tranquillity more perfect now, than it was between the first riot and the second, or between the second and the third? And why "except the Indian ravages," is a _little intermission_ to be denominated "the most perfect tranquillity?" For the Indians too have been quiet lately.
Page 156
Our legal method of compulsion is by imprisonment: the Indians cannot and will not imprison one another; and if we attempt to imprison them, I apprehend it would be generally disliked by the nations, and occasion breaches.
Page 158
Page 173
It was written possibly about the time that governor Pownall was engaged in publishing his book on the _administration of the colonies_.
Page 219
--5 Geo.
Page 222
At first this was something difficult; but at length, as all business is improved by practice, it became easy.
Page 228
_Craven Street, Dec.
Page 236
Let them learn to be corrupted by great and real smugglers; but (to show their diligence) scour with armed boats every bay, harbour, river, creek, cove or nook, throughout the coast of your colonies; stop and detain every coaster, every wood-boat, every fisherman, tumble their cargoes and even their ballast inside out, and upside down; and if a pennyworth of pins is found un-entered, let the whole be seized and confiscated.
Page 285
Page 290
His generous hospitality to strangers, according to his ability, his goodness, his charity, his courage in the cause of the oppressed, his fidelity in friendship, his humility, his honesty and sincerity, his moderation and his loyalty to the government, his piety, his temperance, his love to mankind, his magnanimity, his public spiritedness, and, in fine, his consummate virtue, make him justly deserve to be esteemed the glory of his country.
Page 296
After I have treated with a dram, and presented a pinch of my best snuff, I expect all company will retire, and leave me to pursue my studies for the good of the public.
Page 350
The thought was happy, pertinent, and true; Methinks a genius might the plan pursue.
Page 367
What signifies our wishing? Things happen after all as they will happen.
Page 409
of quakers in New England, 454.