Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 33

I led in it, expressing strongly my intention of returning to it;
and one of them asking what kind of money we had there, I produced a
handful of silver and spread it before them, which was a kind of
raree-show[51] they had not been used to, paper being the money of
Boston. Then I took an opportunity of letting them see my watch; and
lastly (my brother still grum and sullen) I gave them a piece of
eight[52] to drink, and took my leave. This visit of mine offended him
extremely; for, when my mother some time after spoke to him of a
reconciliation, and of her wishes to see us on good terms together,
and that we might live for the future as brothers, he said I had
insulted him in such a manner before his people that he could never
forget or forgive it. In this, however, he was mistaken.

My father received the governor's letter with some apparent surprise,
but said little of it to me for several days, when, Captain Holmes
returning, he showed it to him, asked him if he knew Keith, and what
kind of man he was, adding his opinion that he must be of small
discretion to think of setting a boy up in business who wanted yet
three years of being at man's estate. Holmes said what he could in
favor of the project, but my father was clear in the impropriety of
it, and at last gave a flat denial to it. Then he wrote a civil letter
to Sir William, thanking him for the patronage he had so kindly
offered me, but declining to assist me as yet in setting up, I being,
in his opinion, too young to be trusted with the management of a
business so important, and for which the preparation must be so

My friend and companion, Collins, who was a clerk in the post office,
pleased with the account I gave him of my new country, determined to
go thither also; and, while I waited for my father's determination, he
set out before me by land to Rhode Island, leaving his books, which
were a pretty collection of mathematics and natural philosophy, to
come with mine and me to New York, where he proposed to wait for me.

My father, though he did not approve Sir William's proposition, was
yet pleased that I had been able to obtain so advantageous a character
from a person of such note where I had resided, and that I had been so
industrious and careful as to equip myself so

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Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 2 [of 3]

Page 16
Extreme cold winds congeal the surface of the earth, by.
Page 20
Stuart has given us the figures of a number observed by him in the Mediterranean: all with some particulars which make for my opinion, if well drawn.
Page 31
Mather's whirl was probably filled with dust, the sides were very dark, but the vacuum within rendering the middle more transparent, he calls it a pillar of light.
Page 68
I am persuaded, from several instances happening within my knowledge, that they do not bear cold weather so well as the whites; they will perish when exposed to a less degree of it, and are more apt to have their limbs frostbitten; and may not this be from the same cause? Would not the earth grow much hotter under the summer-sun, if a constant evaporation from its surface, greater as the sun shines stronger, did not, by tending to cool it; balance, in some degree, the warmer effects of the sun's rays? Is it not owing to the constant evaporation from the surface of every leaf, that trees, though shone on by the sun, are always, even the leaves themselves, cool to our sense? at least much cooler than they would otherwise be? May it not be owing to this, that fanning ourselves when warm, does really cool us, though the air is itself warm that we drive with the fan upon our faces; for the atmosphere round, and next to our bodies, having imbibed as much of the perspired vapour as it can well contain, receives no more, and the evaporation is therefore checked and retarded, till we drive away that atmosphere, and bring drier air in its place, that will receive the vapour, and thereby facilitate and increase the evaporation? Certain it is, that mere blowing of air on a dry body does not cool it, as any one may satisfy himself, by blowing with a bellows on the dry ball of a thermometer; the mercury will not fall; if it moves at all, it rather rises, as being.
Page 85
Page 88
At least all our modern philosophers agree to tell us so.
Page 91
While the iron continues soft and hot, it is only a temporary magnet; if it cools or grows hard in that situation, it becomes a permanent one, the magnetic fluid not easily resuming its equilibrium.
Page 119
in order to measure the time taken up by the boat in passing from end to end, I counted as fast as I could count to ten repeatedly, keeping an account of the number of tens on my fingers.
Page 205
Page 225
An iron frame is placed just under the breast, and extending quite to the back of the chimney, so that a plate of the same metal may slide horizontally backwards and forwards in the grooves on each side of the frame.
Page 229
For this purpose I would propose erecting the funnel close to the grate, so as to have only an iron plate between the fire and the funnel, through which plate, the air in the funnel being heated, it will be sure to draw well, and force the smoke to descend, as in the figure (Plate, Figure 9.
Page 230
One of the funnels, in a house I once occupied, had a particular funnel joined to the south side of the stack, so that three of its sides were exposed to the sun in the course of the day, viz.
Page 239
three knobs h h h against the inside of the vase, and slipping the drawer into its place; the machine is fit for use.
Page 242
One may obtain some notion of the quantity of fuel thus wasted in smoke, by reflecting on the quantity of soot that a few weeks firing will lodge against the sides of the chimney, and yet this is formed only of those particles of the column of smoke that happen to touch the sides in its ascent.
Page 297
Manufactures, exported, draw subsistence from foreign countries for numbers, who are thereby enabled to marry and raise families.
Page 304
One of the effects of their conquest furnishes us with a strong proof, how prevalent manners are even beyond quantity of subsistence; for, when the custom of bestowing on the citizens of Rome corn enough to support themselves and families was become established, and Egypt and Sicily produced the grain, that fed the inhabitants of Italy, this became less populous every day, and the _jus trium liberorum_ was but an expedient, that could not balance the want of industry and frugality.
Page 317
As a maritime power, we presume it is not thought right, that Great Britain should grant such freedom, except partially; as in the case of war with France, when tobacco is allowed to be sent thither under the sanction of passports.
Page 327
This however is a mistake.
Page 363
fire, not created by friction, but collected, 173.
Page 377