Benjamin Franklin Representative selections, with introduction, bibliograpy, and notes

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 136

provided a brilliant and perspicuous survey. "Self-revealed" fails to
do justice to Bruce's incisive commentary.)

*Fay, Bernard. _Franklin, the Apostle of Modern Times._ Boston: 1929. (A
readable critical biography said to be based on "six hundred to nine
hundred unpublished letters." Would have been more useful had it been
given scholarly documentation. Some new light on Franklin's Masonic
activities and his efforts during 1757-1762 to effect the growth of a
British empire. [Fay used the Franklin-Galloway correspondence in the
W. S. Mason and W. L. Clements collections.] Believes that Franklin
was a "follower of the seventeenth-century English Pythagoreans":
since this belief is largely undocumented, one feels it curious that
Pythagoreanism should bulk larger than the pattern of thought provoked
by Locke and Newton. See very critical reviews by H. M. Jones in
_American Literature_, II, 306-12 [Nov., 1930], and W. C. Bruce,
_American Historical Review_, XXXV, 634 ff. [April, 1930]. The latter
concludes that "there is very little, indeed, in the text of the book
under review that makes any unquestionably substantial addition to our
pre-existing knowledge of Franklin, or is marked by anything that can
be termed freshness of interpretation.")

Fay, Bernard. _The Two Franklins: Fathers of American Democracy._
Boston: 1933. (Charmingly spirited portrait of patriarchal Franklin of
Passy [reworking of materials in _Franklin, the Apostle of Modern
Times_]. Fay's habit of mingling quotation, paraphrase, and intuition
in use of Bache's Diary suggests untrustworthy documentation. The
second Franklin is, of course, Benjamin Franklin Bache [1769-1798, son
of Sally Franklin and Richard Bache], editor of the republican _Aurora
General Advertiser_. For a judicial, unsympathetic review see A.
Guerard's in the _New York Herald Tribune Books_, Oct. 22, 1933. J. A.
Krout, in the _American Historical Review_, XXXIX, 741-2 [July, 1934],
observes that Fay "fails to establish the elder Franklin's paternal
relation to the democratic forces of the 'revolutionary' decade after

Fisher, S. G. _The True Benjamin Franklin._ Philadelphia: 1899. (Highly
prejudiced interpretation with disproportionate attention to
Franklin's acknowledged shortcomings.)

*Ford, P. L. _The Many-Sided Franklin._ New York: 1899. (A gracefully
solid and inclusive standard work.)

Hale, E. E., and Hale, E. E., Jr. _Franklin in France. From Original
Documents, Most of Which Are Now Published for the First Time._

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Text Comparison with Experiments and Observations on Electricity Made at Philadelphia in America

Page 3
Touch the wire of the phial repeatedly with your finger, and at every touch you will see the.
Page 4
Page 11
Page 12
Place two phials equally charged on a table at five or six inches distance.
Page 13
Page 14
Purposing to analyse the electrified bottle, in order to find wherein its strength lay, we placed it on glass, and drew out the cork and wire which for that purpose had been loosely put in.
Page 17
On the principle, in s 7, that hooks of bottles, differently charged, will attract and repel differently, is made, an electrical wheel, that turns with considerable strength.
Page 21
Chagrined a little that we have hitherto been able to produce nothing in this way of use to mankind; and the hot weather coming on, when electrical experiments are not so agreeable, 'tis proposed to put an end to them for this season, somewhat humorously, in a party of pleasure, on the banks of _Skuylkill_.
Page 23
For when vapours rise into the coldest region above the earth, the cold will not diminish the electrical fire, if it doth the common.
Page 24
Hence the continual storms of rain, thunder, and lightning on the east-side of the _Andes_, which running north and south, and being vastly high, intercept all the clouds brought against them from the _Atlantic_ ocean by the trade winds, and oblige them to deposite their waters, by which the vast rivers _Amazons_, _La Plata_, and _Oroonoko_ are formed, which return the water into the same sea, after.
Page 26
But if two gun-barrels electrified will strike at two inches distance, and make a loud snap, to what a great distance may 10,000 acres of electrified cloud strike and give its fire, and how loud must be that crack! 38.
Page 27
It has been fatal to many, both men and beasts.
Page 33
When you have drawn away one of these angular portions of the fluid, another succeeds in its place, from the nature of fluidity and the mutual repulsion beforementioned; and so the atmosphere continues flowing off at such angle, like a stream, till no more is remaining.
Page 34
And as in plucking the hairs from the horse's tail, a degree of strength insufficient to pull away a handful at once, could yet easily strip it hair by hair; so a blunt body presented cannot draw off a number of particles at once, but a pointed one, with no greater force, takes them away easily, particle by particle.
Page 37
Lightning has often been known to strike people blind.
Page 39
Sometimes the glass breaks to pieces: once the upper glass broke into a thousand pieces, looking like coarse salt.
Page 40
The corner that happens to be uppermost when the leaf is rising, being a sharp point, from the extream thinness of the gold, draws and receives at a distance a sufficient quantity of the electrical fluid to give itself an electrical atmosphere, by which its progress to the upper plate is stopt, and it begins to be repelled from that plate, and would be driven back to the under plate, but that its lowest corner is likewise a point, and throws off or discharges the overplus of the leaf's atmosphere, as fast as the upper corner draws it on.
Page 42
Now let the globe be turned, and you see a spark strike from the bullet to the wire of the bottle, and the same instant you see and feel an exactly equal spark striking from the coating on your knuckle, and so on spark for spark.
Page 45
[10] But if the inside of the globe be lined with a non-electric, the additional repellency of the electrical fluid, thus collected by friction on the rubb'd part of the globe's outer surface, drives an equal quantity out of the inner surface into that non-electric lining, which receiving it, and carrying it away from the rubb'd part into the common mass, through the axis of the globe and frame of the machine, the new collected electrical fluid can enter and remain in the outer surface, and none of it (or a very little) will be received by the prime conductor.
Page 48
I likewise put into a phial, instead of water,.