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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 196


Understanding that Col. French had brought on board the Governor's
Dispatches, I ask'd the Captain for those Letters that were to be under
my Care. He said all were put into the Bag together; and he could not
then come at them; but before we landed in England, I should have an
Opportunity of picking them out. So I was satisfy'd for the present, and
we proceeded on our Voyage. We had a sociable Company in the Cabin, and
lived uncommonly well, having the Addition of all Mr. Hamilton's Stores,
who had laid in plentifully. In this Passage Mr. Denham contracted a
Friendship for me that continued during his Life. The Voyage was
otherwise not a pleasant one, as we had a great deal of bad Weather.

When we came into the Channel, the Captain kept his Word with me, and
gave me an Opportunity of examining the Bag for the Governor's Letters.
I found none upon which my Name was put, as under my Care; I pick'd out
6 or 7 that by the Hand writing I thought might be the promis'd Letters,
especially as one of them was directed to Basket the King's printer, and
another to some Stationer. We arriv'd in London the 24^th of December,
1724.--I waited upon the Stationer who came first in my Way, delivering
the Letter as from Gov. Keith. I don't know such a Person, says he: but
opening the Letter, O, this is from Riddlesden; I have lately found him
to be a compleat Rascal, and I will have nothing to do with him, nor
receive any Letters from him. So putting the Letter into my Hand, he
turn'd on his Heel and left me to serve some Customer. I was surprized
to find these were not the Governor's Letters. And after recollecting
and comparing Circumstances, I began to doubt his Sincerity.--I found my
Friend Denham, and opened the whole Affair to him. He let me into
Keith's Character, told me there was not the least Probability that he
had written any Letters for me, that no one who knew him had the
smallest Dependence on him, and he laught at the Notion of the
Governor's giving me a Letter of Credit, having as he said no Credit to
give.--On my expressing some Concern about what I should do: He advis'd
me to endeavour getting some Employment in the Way of my Business. Among
the Printers here, says he, you will improve yourself; and when you
return to America, you will set up to greater Advantage.--

We both of us happen'd to know, as

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

Page 0
* * * * * * _LONDON_: Printed and sold by E.
Page 4
Then apply the lower end to the bottom of the bottle, and gradually bring the upper-end near the wire in the cork.
Page 7
The repellency between the cork-ball and the shot is likewise destroy'd; 1.
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had also occurred to us some months before Mr _Watson_'s ingenious _Sequel_ came to hand, and these were some of the new things I intended to have communicated to you.
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After such strong spark, neither of them discover any electricity.
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Thus, the whole force of the bottle, and power of giving a shock, is in the GLASS ITSELF; the non-electrics in contact with the two surfaces, serving only to _give_ and _receive_ to and from the several parts of the glass; that is, to give on one side, and take away from the other.
Page 15
Upon this, we made what we call'd an _electrical-battery_, consisting of eleven panes of large sash-glass, arm'd with thin leaden plates pasted on each side, placed vertically, and supported at two inches distance on silk cords, with thick hooks of leaden wire, one from each side, standing upright, distant from each other, and convenient communications of wire and chain, from the giving side of one pane, to the receiving side of the other; that so the whole might be charged together, and with the same labour as one single pane; and another contrivance to bring the giving sides, after charging, in contact with one long wire, and the receivers with another, which two long wires would give the force of all the plates of glass at once through the body of any animal forming the circle with them.
Page 16
We made also of large glass panes, magical pictures, and self-moving animated wheels, presently to be described.
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It is then plainly visible in the night; it appears at the stern and in the wake of every sailing vessel; every dash of an oar shows it, and every surff and spray: in storms the whole sea seems on fire.
Page 30
And we know that common matter has not.
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But easiest of all between L, C, M, where the quantity is largest, and the surface to attract and keep it back the least.
Page 36
And lastly, if a needle fix'd on the punch with its point upright, or even on the floor below the punch, will draw the fire from the scale silently at a much greater than the striking distance, and so prevent its descending towards.
Page 40
Were these two points perfectly equal in acuteness, the leaf would take place exactly in the middle space, for its Weight is a trifle, compared to the power acting on it: But it is generally nearest the unelectrified plate, because, when the leaf is offered to the electrified plate at a distance, the sharpest point is commonly first affected and raised towards it; so that point, from its greater acuteness, receiving the fluid faster than its opposite can discharge it at equal distances, it retires from the electrified plate, and draws nearer to the unelectrified plate, till it comes to a distance where the discharge can be exactly equal to the receipt, the latter being lessened, and the former encreased; and there it remains as long as the globe continues to supply fresh electrical matter.
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greatest quantity.
Page 48
Another chain was fix'd to the prime conductor, and held in the hand of a person to be electrised.
Page 50
Accordingly we find, that if the prime conductor be electrified, and the cork balls in a state of repellency before the bottle is charged, they continue so afterwards.
Page 51
When the bottle is full charged, the crooked wire cannot well be brought to touch the top and bottom so quick, but that there will be a loud spark; unless the points be sharp, without loops.