Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 62

frequent occasion to speak further of hereafter.

But my giving this account of it here is to show something of the
interest I had, every one of these exerting themselves in recommending
business to us. Breintnal particularly procured us from the Quakers
the printing forty sheets of their history, the rest being to be done
by Keimer; and upon this we worked exceedingly hard, for the price was
low. It was a folio, pro patria size, in pica, with long primer notes.
I composed of it a sheet a day, and Meredith worked it off at press;
it was often eleven at night, and sometimes later, before I had
finished my distribution[95] for the next day's work, for the little
jobs sent in by our other friends now and then put us back. But so
determined I was to continue doing a sheet a day of the folio that one
night, when, having imposed[96] my forms, I thought my day's work
over, one of them by accident was broken, and two pages reduced to
pi,[97] I immediately distributed and composed it over again before I
went to bed; and this industry, visible to our neighbors, began to
give us character and credit; particularly, I was told, that mention
being made of the new printing office at the merchants' Every-Night
Club, the general opinion was that it must fail, there being already
two printers in the place, Keimer and Bradford; but Dr. Baird (whom
you and I saw many years after at his native place, St. Andrew's, in
Scotland) gave a contrary opinion: "For the industry of that
Franklin," says he, "is superior to anything I ever saw of the kind; I
see him still at work when I go home from club, and he is at work
again before his neighbors are out of bed." This struck the rest, and
we soon after had offers from one of them to supply us with
stationery; but as yet we did not choose to engage in shop business.

I mention this industry the more particularly and the more freely,
though it seems to be talking in my own praise, that those of my
posterity who shall read it may know the use of that virtue, when they
see its effects in my favor throughout this relation.

George Webb, who had found a female friend that lent him wherewith to
purchase his time of Keimer, now came to offer himself as a journeyman
to us. We could not then employ him; but I foolishly let him know, as
a secret, that I soon intended to begin a

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

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_ _The experiments which our author relates are most of them peculiar to himself; they are conducted with judgment, and the inferences from them plain and conclusive; though sometimes proposed under the terms of suppositions and conjectures.
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By sifting fine sand on it; this does it gradually.
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--To _C_, standing on the floor, both appear to be electrised: for he having only the middle quantity of electrical fire, receives a spark upon approaching _B_, who has an over quantity; but gives one to _A_, who has an under quantity.
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There will be the same explosion and shock, if the electrified phial is held in one hand by the hook, and the coating touch'd with the other, as when held by the coating, and touch'd at the hook.
Page 18
In a circle on the table which supports the wheel, are fixed twelve small pillars of glass, at about four inches distance, with a thimble on the top of each.
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turn twelve sparks, to the thimbles, which make seven thousand two hundred sparks; and the bullet of the under surface receiving as many from the thimbles; those bullets moving in the time near two thousand five hundred feet.
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If the particles of water bring with them portions of _both sorts_ of fire, the repulsions of the particles of air is still more strengthened and increased, and the triangles farther enlarged.
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When the clothes are wet, if a flash in its way to the ground should strike your head, it will run in the water over the.
Page 28
When electrical fire strikes thro' a body, it acts upon the common fire contained in it, and puts that fire in motion; and if there be a sufficient quantity of each kind of fire, the body will be inflamed.
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Thus common matter is a kind of spunge to the electrical fluid.
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Apply the wire of a well-charged vial, held in your hand, to one of them (A) Fig.
Page 37
If the electrical stand be kept clean and dry, a man standing on it when such clouds are passing low, might be electrified and afford sparks, the rod drawing fire to him from a cloud.
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From the before mentioned law of electricity, that points, as they are more or less acute, draw on and throw off the electrical fluid with more or less power, and at greater or less distances, and in larger or smaller quantities in the same time, we may see how to account for the situation of the leaf of gold suspended between two plates, the upper one continually electrified, the under one in a person's hand standing on the floor.
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[Illustration] 33.
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Hence we see the.
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electrical fire from the floor to the cushion; then, if there be no fine points or hairy threads sticking out from the cushion, or from the parts of the machine opposite to the cushion, (of which you must be careful) you can get but a few sparks from the prime conductor, which are all the cushion will part with.
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