Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

By Benjamin Franklin

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...[Illustration]

ECLECTIC ENGLISH CLASSICS

FRANKLIN'S
AUTOBIOGRAPHY

EDITED BY
O. LEON...

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...head" (as Defoe calls such a
spirit), devised much that helped life to amenity and comfort....

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...he returned to Philadelphia. "You require
my history," he wrote to Lord Kames, "from the time...

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...to execute, that of being one of the commissioners appointed by
law to dispose of the...

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...the temper of America toward Great Britain before
the year 1763?[3]

...

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...old clothes over again, till they can make new
ones.

After the...

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...peeps out under my only coiffure, a fine fur
cap which comes down my forehead almost...

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...felicity, the conducing means I made use of, which with the
blessing of God so well...

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...only in whose power it is to bless
to us even our afflictions.

The notes one of...

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...style,[9] just
four years to a day before I was born. The account we received of...

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...if he saw the apparitor coming, who was an officer of
the spiritual court. In that...

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...libeler [says he]
I hate it with my heart;
...

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...sea, but my
father declared against it. However, living near the water, I was much
in and...

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...of the town or of
the church he belonged to, and showed a good deal of...

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...virtuous woman.
Their youngest son,
In filial regard to...

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...regretted that, at a time when I had such a thirst for
knowledge, more proper books...

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...he sent me about the town to sell them. The first
sold wonderfully, the event being...

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...saw
the justice of his remarks, and thence grew more attentive to the manner
in writing, and...

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...his care, and which indeed
I still thought a duty, though I could not, as it...

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...reading Shaftesbury and Collins, become a real doubter in
many points of our religious doctrine, I...

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...I think, less properly:

"For want of modesty is want of sense."

If...

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...equally approved; and I kept
my secret till my small fund of sense for such performances...

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...to
avoid the censure of the Assembly that might fall on him as still
printing it by...

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...miles from home, a boy of but seventeen, without the
least recommendation to, or knowledge of,...

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...Because to be a libeler
I hate it with my...

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...36: The legislature.]

[Footnote 37: Errors; mistakes.]




Sec. 2. SEEKS HIS FORTUNE.


My inclinations for the sea were...

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...that we could not hear so as to
understand each other. There were canoes on the...

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...set many of the facts
in a very ridiculous light, and might have hurt weak minds...

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...stock of cash consisted of a Dutch
dollar and about a shilling in copper.[42] The latter...

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...was in, or slept in,
in Philadelphia.

Walking down again toward the river, and looking in the...

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...explain all his
views, what interest he relied on, and in what manner he intended to
proceed....

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...street.

I began now to have some acquaintance among the young people of the
town that were...

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...he was going with Colonel French to
taste, as he said, some excellent Madeira. I was...

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...I led in it, expressing strongly my intention of returning to it;
and one of them...

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...handsomely in so short a
time; therefore, seeing no prospect of an accommodation between my
brother and...

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...me where they lived,
and invited me to come and see them; but I avoided it,...

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...same house with me and at my
expense. Knowing I had that money of Vernon's, he...

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..."I will do it myself. Give me an
inventory of the things necessary to be had...

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...saw smaller fish taken out of their stomachs; then thought I,
"If you eat one another,...

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...better at this time from the cheapness of it, not costing us above
eighteen pence sterling...

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...he had no genius
for poetry, and advised him to think of nothing beyond the business...

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...he, "that Franklin had been capable of such a
performance; such painting, such force, such fire!...

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...but when I went to his lodging, the secretary
came to me from him with the...

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...the great cabin; so that Ralph and I were
forced to take up with a berth...

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...there was not the least
probability that he had written any letters for me; that no...

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...actor; but Wilkes,[64] to whom he applied,
advised him candidly not to think of that employment,...

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...on those subjects, carried me to the Horns, a
pale-ale house in ---- Lane, Cheapside, and...

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...by them. All was in vain; sheets of the poem continued to
come by every post.

A...

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...have me in the composing room, I
left the pressmen; a new _bien venu_,[70] or sum...

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...agreed to take me in at the same
rate, three shillings and sixpence per week; cheaper,...

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...so much employment for a confessor."
"Oh," said she, "it is impossible to avoid vain thoughts."...

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...acquired a plentiful fortune in a few
years. Returning to England in the ship with me,...

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...made me, probably I should not so soon have
returned to America. After many years, you...

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...of type.]

[Footnote 72: "A printing house used to be called a chapel by the
workmen, and...

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...taken ill. My distemper was a
pleurisy, which very nearly carried me off. I suffered a...

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...have these raw, cheap
hands formed through me; and, as soon as I had instructed them,...

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...letter founder
in America. I had seen types cast at James's in London, but without
much attention...

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...want of money. He then let me
know that his father had a high opinion of...

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...brought with him a
friend or two for company. My mind having been much more improved...

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...compunction, and recollecting
Keith's conduct toward me (who was another freethinker), and my own
toward Vernon and...

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...a year, though I have since known it to let for
seventy, we took in Thomas...

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...more queries on any point of morals,
politics, or natural philosophy, to be discussed by the...

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...have
frequent occasion to speak further of hereafter.

But my giving this account of it here is...

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...newspaper, and might then
have work for him. My hopes of success, as I told him,...

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...the
hands of our friends in the House, and they voted us their printers
for the year...

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...have undertaken
in this affair of ours, and is unwilling to advance for you and me
what...

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...inhabitants in the province, since I now saw all the old
houses inhabited and many new...

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...In order to secure my credit and character as a tradesman, I
took care not only...

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...Bradford being unkind enough to
forbid it, which occasioned some resentment on my part; and I...

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...one as I
should not otherwise think agreeable. In the mean time a friendly
correspondence as neighbors...

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...each
took his books home again.

And now I set on foot my first project of a...

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...consult in our
conferences, but become a common benefit, each of us being at liberty
to borrow...

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...to go about and
propose it to such as they thought lovers of reading. In this...

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...bowl with a spoon of silver! They had been bought for me without
my knowledge by...

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...and unedifying, since not a single moral principle was
inculcated or enforced, their aim seeming to...

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...of a personal God, but denying
revelation.]

[Footnote 92:

"Whatever is, is in its...

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... *

"Am I loaded with care, she takes off a...

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...was about this time I conceived the bold and arduous project of
arriving at moral perfection....

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...no uncleanliness in body, clothes, or habitation.

11. TRANQUILLITY.

Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents...

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...guard was to avoid
every (the least) offense against Temperance, leaving the other
virtues to their ordinary...

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...| * | * | * |
|----------------+----+----+----+----+----+----+----|
...

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...| | | |
...

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... With knowledge, conscious peace, and virtue pure;
Sacred, substantial, never-fading...

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... ...

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... { 2}
...

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...as bright as the edge. The smith
consented to grind it bright for him if he...

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...a good constitution; to industry and frugality, the
early easiness of his circumstances and acquisition of...

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...hurtful because they are forbidden, but
forbidden because they are hurtful, the nature of man alone...

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...on with some violence to natural
inclination, became at length so easy and so habitual to...

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... more confusion.

"That few in public affairs...

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...of the virtues, as in the before-mentioned model; that the
existence of such a society should...

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...industry and
frugality as the means of procuring wealth, and thereby securing
virtue; it being more difficult...

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...them manifest injustice. Now many of
our printers make no scruple of gratifying the malice of...

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...in
admiring them. Among the rest I became one of his constant hearers,
his sermons pleasing me,...

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...to play
any more, unless on this condition: that the victor in every game
should have a...

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...there with his printing house. Our former
differences were forgotten, and our meeting was very cordial...

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...through the several clubs the sentiments of the Junto.

The project was approved, and every member...

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...ingenuity of the age could devise.
They made them a diary, a receipt book, a jest...

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...few days. He sent it immediately, and I
returned it in about a week with another...

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...was often
neglected, and most of the nights spent in tippling. I thereupon wrote
a paper to...

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...since its establishment, that which I first formed, called
the "Union Fire Company," still subsists and...

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...so that even if the Mufti of Constantinople were to send a
missionary to preach Mohammedanism...

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...to be affected by the preacher. His answer was: "At any
other time, friend Hopkinson, I...

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...the curiosity to learn how
far he could be heard, by retiring backward down the street...

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...money itself being of a prolific nature.

The partnership at Carolina having succeeded, I was encouraged...

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...I stated our defenseless situation in strong lights,
with the necessity of union and discipline for...

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...nightly guard while the war lasted, and among the rest I regularly
took my turn of...

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...them;
but they did not care to displace me on account merely of my zeal for
the...

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...might embroil
them with their elders and friends. Being thus secure of a majority, I
went up,...

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...purposes. They were unwilling to offend government, on the
one hand, by a direct refusal, and...

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...complained to me that they
were grievously calumniated by the zealots of other persuasions, and
charged with...

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...were growing in
demand.[n] To promote that demand I wrote and published a pamphlet
entitled, "An Account...

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...offers himself
to serve the society as their secretary till they shall be provided
with one more...

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...different sects, care was taken in the nomination of
trustees, in whom the building and ground...

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...printing office, paying me punctually my share of the profits.
This partnership continued eighteen years, successfully...

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...legislator
in the Assembly. My election to this trust was repeated every year for
ten years without...

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...with,'
and it must be so." And, indeed, if it be the design of Providence to
extirpate...

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...leave was
obtained chiefly on the consideration that the House could throw the
bill out if they...

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...them
out to be worried by other beggars, and therefore refused also to give
such a list....

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...houses clean, so much dirt not being brought in by people's feet;
the benefit to the...

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...did not, from the effect
holes in the bottom of the globe lamps used at Vauxhall[144]...

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...in
three hours, a strong, active man might have done it in half the time.
And here...

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...to be swept up and carried away before the shops are open, is
very practicable in...

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...the first four years the office became above nine hundred
pounds in debt to us; but...

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...and a grand
council was to be chosen by the representatives of the people of the
several...

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...great clearness and strength of judgment, and therefore
recommended it as "well worthy of their closest...

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...a man that no personal difference between him
and me was occasioned by the contest, and...

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...also formed of words or
phrases so arranged as to read the same in all directions....

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...power of the king.]

[Footnote 155: The government of the people.]

[Footnote 156: The squire of Don...

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...of them were to be seen. Thus this important affair was by my
means completed. Mr....

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...I was desired to put on paper
the terms that appeared to me necessary. This I...

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...other horse in the service, the price according to such
valuation...

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... would be necessary to drive and take care of them.

...

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... and divide the pay proportionately between you; but if you do not
...

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...in this dear country, to lay in the stores that
might be necessary in so long...

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...the paymaster for the round sum of one thousand pounds, leaving the
remainder to the next...

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...his profession, and said no more.
The enemy, however, did not take the advantage of his...

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...arrived at Philadelphia, where the inhabitants
could protect him. This whole transaction gave us Americans the...

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...the discharge of the
servants of three poor farmers of Lancaster County that he had
enlisted, reminding...

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...and had rejected all
their bills for not having such an exempting clause, now redoubled his
attacks...

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...raising
men, having soon five hundred and sixty under my command. My son, who
had in the...

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...shelter us till we arrived, near
night, at the house of a German, where, and in...

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...and thus our fort, if such a magnificent name may be
given to so miserable a...

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...punctually served out
to them, half in the morning, and the other half in the evening,...

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...hautboys, flutes, clarinets,
etc. I understood that their sermons were not usually preached to
mixed congregations of...

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...about twelve hundred well-looking men, with a company of
artillery, who had been furnished with six...

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...from Sir Everard a gentle admonition.

Notwithstanding the continual wrangle between the governor and the
House, in...

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...fort upon the west side of Lake Champlain.]

[Footnote 160: That is, he was born in...

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...principal was Mr. Kinnersley, an ingenious neighbor, who,
being out of business, I encouraged to undertake...

Page 149

...said it must have been fabricated by his enemies at
Paris, to decry his system. Afterward,...

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...of the high esteem my
experiments[n] were in among the learned abroad, and of their wonder
that...

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...etc. The
drinkers, finding we did not return immediately to the table, sent us
a decanter of...

Page 152

...up a bill to the governor, granting a sum of sixty
thousand pounds for the king's...

Page 153

...claims to those rights, but only suspended the
exercise of them on this occasion through force,...

Page 154

...myself one morning to pay my respects, I found in his
antechamber one Innis, a messenger...

Page 155

...that province, and the savages had
massacred many of the garrison after capitulation.

I saw afterward in...

Page 156

...near three months longer, whereby their bottoms were so much
damaged by the worm[196] that a...

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...that I had
not pocketed a farthing, but he appeared clearly not to believe me;
and, indeed,...

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...and the
same vessel, laden by the judgment and orders of one captain, shall
sail better or...

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...is said, mechanically; for he did not see a
light just before us, which had been...

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...as possible. I
agreed to go with him the next morning. Accordingly, Mr. Hanbury called
for me...

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...conduct as well as they
could, and I the Assembly's. We now appeared very wide, and...

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...they
omitted answering the message.

When this act, however, came over, the proprietaries, counseled by
Paris, determined to...

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...tax having been levied by the act
before the order of Council arrived, they appointed a...

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...(RECEIVED IN PARIS).

"MY DEAR AND HONORED FRIEND: I have often...

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...many of them put together, who has so much
in his...

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...replied, "If you would have my advice, I will give it to
you in short; for...

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...I have no lands; or, if I have, they are
smartly taxed. He that hath a...

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...industry we must likewise be steady and careful, and
oversee our own affairs with our own...

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...the want great.

And further, What maintains one vice would bring up two children. You
may think,...

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...the worth of water. But this they might have known before, if
they had taken his...

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...all spirit and virtue.
It is hard for an empty bag to stand upright.

"What would you...

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...was
afterward prosperous.

"And now, to conclude, Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will
learn in no...

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...not too many books.

None preaches better than the ant, and she says nothing.

Forewarned, forearmed.

...

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...one of the first and, in proportion to his means, one of
the greatest of American...

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...and put through a successful journalistic hoax.
He published in _The Public Advertiser_ what was for...

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...principles.

=141.= Find out definitely what system of street cleaning prevails in
your home town. Write a...

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... Address at Cooper Union (See =Macaulay's= Speeches on Copyright)

=Macaulay's= Essay...