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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 202

Protection she expected in
having a Man lodge in the House. She was a Widow, an elderly Woman, had
been bred a Protestant, being a Clergyman's Daughter, but was converted
to the Catholic Religion by her Husband, whose Memory she much
revered[;] had lived much among People of Distinction, and knew a 1000
Anecdotes of them as far back as the Times of Charles the Second. She
was lame in her Knees with the Gout, and therefore seldom stirr'd out of
her Room, so sometimes wanted Company; and hers was so highly amusing
[Franklin first wrote "agreable"; both it and "amusing" are deleted in
the MS.] to me; that I was sure to spend an Evening with her whenever
she desired it. Our Supper was only half an Anchovy each, on a very
little Strip of Bread and Butter, and half a Pint of Ale between us. But
the Entertainment was in her Conversation. My always keeping good Hours,
and giving little Trouble in the Family, made her unwilling to part with
me; so that when I talk'd of a Lodging I had heard of, nearer my
Business, for 2/ a Week, which, intent as I now was on saving Money,
made some Difference; she bid me not think of it, for she would abate me
two Shillings a Week for the future, so I remain'd with her at 1/6 as
long as I staid in London.--

In a Garret of her House there lived a Maiden Lady of 70 in the most
retired Manner, of whom my Landlady gave me this Account, that she was a
Roman Catholic, had been sent abroad when young and lodg'd in a Nunnery
with an Intent of becoming a Nun: but the Country not agreeing with her,
she return'd to England, where there being no Nunnery, she had vow'd to
lead the Life of a Nun as near as might be done in those Circumstances:
Accordingly she had given all her Estate to charitable Uses, reserving
only Twelve Pounds a Year to live on, and out of this Sum she still gave
a great deal in Charity, living herself on Watergruel only, and using no
Fire but to boil it.--She had lived many Years in that Garret, being
permitted to remain there gratis by successive Catholic Tenants of the
House below, as they deem'd it a Blessing to have her there. A Priest
visited her, to confess her every Day. I have ask'd her, says my
Landlady, how she, as she liv'd, could possibly find so much Employment
for a Confessor? O, says she, it is

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 2 of 2] With his Most Interesting Essays, Letters, and Miscellaneous Writings; Familiar, Moral, Political, Economical, and Philosophical, Selected with Care from All His Published Productions, and Comprising Whatever Is Most Entertaining and Valuable to the General Reader

Page 6
Price 151 To Dr.
Page 11
--On the Saltness of Seawater 263 To Miss Stephenson.
Page 16
_A fat kitchen makes a lean will_; and _Many estates are spent in the getting, Since women for tea forsook spinning and knitting, And men for punch forsook hewing and splitting.
Page 24
As you see, therefore, that our city is composed of above ten thousand families, and it being a difficult task to watch over them all at once, why did you not first try to retrieve your uncle's affairs, which are running to decay? and, after having given that proof of your industry, you might have taken a greater trust upon you.
Page 27
Page 40
How very few of us continue so long! I have seen generations born, flourish, and expire! My present friends are the children and grandchildren of the friends of my youth, who are now, alas, no more! And I must soon follow them; for, by the course of nature, though still in health, I cannot expect to live above seven or eight minutes longer.
Page 41
My brothers, and sisters, and cousins, understanding the bargain I had made, told me I had given four times as much for it as it was worth; put me in mind of what good things I might have bought with the rest of the money; and laughed at me so much for my folly, that I cried with vexation; and the reflection gave me more chagrin than the _whistle_ gave me pleasure.
Page 57
load of our public debt, and the heavy expense of maintaining our fleets and armies to be ready for our defence on occasion, makes it necessary not only to continue old taxes, but often to look out for new ones, perhaps it may not be unuseful to state this matter in a light that few seem to have considered it in.
Page 87
It will cost but little more than a common glass, and will look much handsomer and more creditable.
Page 94
She had _aired_ them indeed, but it was out upon the _hedge_.
Page 98
Industry, frugality, and prudent economy in a wife, are to a tradesman, in their effects, a fortune; and a fortune sufficient for Benjamin, if his expectations are reasonable.
Page 105
New-York, as I said before, has refused.
Page 156
Page 160
Ben is finishing his studies at college, and continues to behave as well as when you knew him, so that I still think he will make you a good son.
Page 172
* * * "_B.
Page 188
Lastly, that were it not for these _diverticula_, it would rage in the bowels of the earth much more furiously, and make greater havoc than it doth.
Page 206
In this view I consider the objections and remarks you sent me, and thank you for them sincerely; but, how much soever my inclinations lead me to philosophical inquiries, I am so engaged in business, public and private, that those more pleasing pursuits are frequently interrupted, and the chain of thought necessary to be closely continued in such disquisitions is so broken and disjointed, that it is with difficulty I satisfy myself in any of them; and I am now not much nearer a conclusion in this matter of the spout than when I first read your letter.
Page 213
Yet still the tube or whirl of air may remain entire, the middle only becoming invisible, as not containing visible matter.
Page 230
Craven-street, June 11, 1760.
Page 234
not pass so regularly and constantly backward and forward in the same track, I began to apprehend there might be something in it, and attempted to account for it from this consideration, that the boat, in proceeding along the canal, must in every boat's length of her course move out of her way a body of water equal in bulk to the room her bottom took up in the water; that the water so moved must pass on each side of her and under her bottom to get behind her; that if the passage under her bottom was straitened by the shallows, more of that water must pass by her sides, and with a swifter motion, which would retard her, as moving the contrary way; or, that the water becoming lower behind the boat than before, she was pressed back by the weight of its difference in height, and her motion retarded by having that weight constantly to overcome.