Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 45

and yet by
degrees led to the point, and brought him into difficulties and
contradictions, that at last he grew ridiculously cautious, and would
hardly answer me the most common question, without asking first,
"_What do you intend to infer from that_?" However, it gave him so
high an opinion of my abilities in the confuting way, that he
seriously proposed my being his colleague in a project he had of
setting up a new sect. He was to preach the doctrines, and I was to
confound all opponents. When he came to explain with me upon the
doctrines, I found several conundrums which I objected to, unless I
might have my way a little too, and introduce some of mine.

Keimer wore his beard at full length, because somewhere in the Mosaic
law it is said, "_Thou shalt not mar the corners of thy beard_." He
likewise kept the Seventh day, Sabbath; and these two points were
essentials with him. I dislik'd both; but agreed to admit them upon
condition of his adopting the doctrine of using no animal food. "I
doubt," said he, "my constitution will not bear that." I assur'd him
it would, and that he would be the better for it. He was usually a
great glutton, and I promised myself some diversion in half starving
him. He agreed to try the practice, if I would keep him company. I did
so, and we held it for three months. We had our victuals dress'd, and
brought to us regularly by a woman in the neighborhood, who had from
me a list of forty dishes, to be prepar'd for us at different times,
in all which there was neither fish, flesh, nor fowl, and the whim
suited me the better at this time from the cheapness of it, not
costing us above eighteenpence sterling each per week. I have since
kept several Lents most strictly, leaving the common diet for that,
and that for the common, abruptly, without the least inconvenience, so
that I think there is little in the advice of making those changes by
easy gradations. I went on pleasantly, but poor Keimer suffered
grievously, tired of the project, long'd for the flesh-pots of Egypt,
and order'd a roast pig. He invited me and two women friends to dine
with him; but, it being brought too soon upon table, he could not
resist the temptation, and ate the whole before we came.

I had made some courtship during this time to Miss Read. I had a great
respect and affection for her, and had some reason to believe she had

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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 5
Franklin 365 Dr.
Page 43
Nevertheless we unfortunately find, that the proprietaries of this province, regardless of this sacred fundamental of our rights and liberties, have so abridged and restricted their late and present _governor's_ discretion in matters of legislation, by their illegal, impracticable, and unconstitutional instructions and prohibitions; that no bill for granting aids and supplies to our most gracious sovereign (be it ever so reasonable, expedient, and necessary for the defence of this his majesty's colony, and safety of his people) unless it be agreeable thereto, can meet with his approbation: by means whereof the many considerable sums of money which have been offered for those purposes, by the assemblies of this province (ever anxious to maintain his honour and rights,) have been rejected; to the great encouragement of his majesty's enemies, and the imminent danger of the loss of this colony.
Page 63
His sentiments are manly, liberal, and spirited; his style close, nervous, and rhetorical.
Page 70
We therefore shall not need to be told by our colonies, that if we leave Canada, however circumscribed, to the French, "we have done nothing[30];" we shall soon be made sensible _ourselves_ of this truth, and to our cost.
Page 83
sober and industrious out of the country.
Page 90
It is a modest word, this _check_, for massacring men, women, and children.
Page 149
his assent to the taxation of their estates; in the _same manner_ that the estates of other persons are to be taxed; and also _to confirm_, for the public use, the several squares formerly _claimed_ by the city.
Page 161
If they tend to obstruct public service, they are to be changed, if possible, before we attempt to act against them; and they can only be changed by reason and persuasion.
Page 166
In the same manner have a few nail-makers, and still a smaller body of steel-makers (perhaps there are not half a dozen of these in England) prevailed totally to forbid by an act of parliament the erecting of slitting-mills, or steel furnaces in America; that the Americans may be obliged to take all their nails for their buildings, and steel for their tools, from these artificers, under the same disadvantages.
Page 169
"I find that this clause, 'privately got into an act, for the benefit of Captain Cole, to the vast loss of the nation,' is foisted into the 3d Anne, chapter 5th, intitled, 'an act for granting to her majesty a further subsidy on wines and merchandizes imported,' with which it has no more connection, than with 34th Edward I.
Page 179
Page 189
The ring-leaders of riots, they think ought to be punished; they would punish them themselves, if they could.
Page 197
Page 228
Franklin in terms of abuse, which never escape from one gentleman towards another.
Page 279
And the Divine Being seems to have manifested his approbation of the mutual forbearance and kindness with which the different sects treat each other, by the remarkable prosperity with which he has been pleased to favour the whole country.
Page 299
The gentleman, who calls himself Sirronio, is directed, on receipt of this, to burn his great book of Crudities.
Page 308
"Industry need not wish, and he that lives upon hope will die fasting.
Page 352
Believing therefore, that it is my _duty_, I shall honestly.
Page 360
Our late governor did for years solicit, request, and even threaten them in vain.
Page 398
_ tornadoes and water-spouts attending it, accounted for, 188.