Franklin's Way to Wealth; or, "Poor Richard Improved"

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 3

on diseases,
absolutely shortens life.

[Illustration: Published by W. Darton, Junr. Octr. 1, 1805.]

"Sloth, like rust, consumes faster than labour wears, while the used
key is always bright," as Poor Richard says.--"But, dost thou love
life? then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made
of," as Poor Richard says.--How much more than is necessary do we spend
in sleep! forgetting that, "the sleeping fox catches no poultry, and
that there will be sleeping enough in the grave," as Poor Richard says.


"If time be of all things the most precious, wasting time must be" as
Poor Richard says, "the greatest prodigality;" since, as he elsewhere
tells us, "Lost time is never found again; and what we call time
enough, always proves little enough." Let us then up and be doing,
and doing to the purpose: so by diligence shall we do more with less
perplexity. "Sloth makes all things difficult, but industry all easy;
and he that riseth late, must trot all day, and shall scarce overtake
his business at night; while laziness travels so slowly, that poverty
soon overtakes him. Drive thy business, let not that drive thee; and
early to bed, and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and
wise," as Poor Richard says.

[Illustration: The Sun shone yesterday, and I would not work, to-day it
rains and I cannot work.]

'So what signifies wishing and hoping for better times? We may make
these times better, if we bestir ourselves. "Industry need not wish,
and he that lives upon hope will die fasting. There are no gains
without pains; then help hands, for I have no lands;" or if I have,
they are smartly taxed. "He that hath a trade, hath an estate; and he
that hath a calling, hath an office of profit and honour," as Poor
Richard says; but then the trade must be worked at, and the calling
well followed, or neither the estate nor the office will enable us to
pay our taxes.--If we are industrious, we shall never starve; for "at
the working man's house hunger looks in, but dares not enter." Nor will
the bailiff or the constable enter, for "industry pays debts, while
despair increaseth them." What, though you have found no treasure,
nor has any rich relation left you a legacy. "Diligence is the mother
of good luck, and God gives all things to industry. Then plow deep,
while sluggards sleep, and you shall have corn to sell and to keep."
Work while it is called to-day, for you know not how much you may be
hindered to-morrow. "One to-day

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Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 1 [of 3]

Page 19
This deserves, perhaps, the name of negligence.
Page 35
At the time of our first acquaintance he professed no particular religion, but a little of all upon occasion.
Page 37
The workmen asked me with eagerness where I had been, what sort of a country it was, and how I liked it.
Page 38
The sloop having touched at Newport in Rhode Island, I paid a visit to my brother John, who had for some years been settled there, and was married.
Page 42
He expressed his approbation; but asked, if my presence in England, that I might choose the characters myself, and see that every article was good in its kind, would not be an advantage? You will also be able, said he, to form some acquaintance there, and establish a correspondence with stationers and booksellers.
Page 66
The first members of our club were Joseph Breintnal, whose occupation was that of a scrivener.
Page 74
She contrived various opportunities of bringing us together, till she saw that I was captivated; which was not difficult, the lady in question possessing great personal merit.
Page 92
Page 99
In consequence of this act a very respectable militia was formed.
Page 104
Great opposition was made to this measure, not only in the house, but in the public prints.
Page 117
And it is presumed, that there will be always found in Boston virtuous and benevolent citizens, willing to bestow a part of their time in doing good to the rising generation, by superintending and managing this institution gratis; it is hoped that no part of the money will at any time lie dead, or be diverted to other purposes, but be continually augmenting by the interest, in which case, there may in time be more than the occasion in Boston may require; and then some may be spared to the neighbouring or other towns, in the said state of Massachusetts, which may desire to have it, such towns engaging to pay punctually the interest, and the proportion of the principal annually to the inhabitants of the town of Boston.
Page 119
_ _"But some persons, to whom they were read, and who had themselves been conversant in electrical disquisitions, were of opinion, they contained so many curious and interesting particulars relative to this affair, that it would be doing a kind of injustice to the public, to confine them solely to the limits of a private acquaintance.
Page 121
_ SIR, In my last I informed you that, in pursuing our electrical enquiries, we had observed some particular phenomena, which we looked upon to be new, and of which I promised to give you some account, though I apprehended they might not possibly be new to you, as so many hands are daily employed in electrical experiments on your side the water, some or other of which would probably hit on the same observations.
Page 131
I am, &c.
Page 163
Take care in cutting your leaf, to leave no little ragged particles on the edges, which sometimes form points where you would not have them.
Page 245
A late instance here, of the melting a bell-wire, in a house struck by lightning, and parts of the wire burning holes in the floor on which they fell, has proved the same with regard to the electricity of nature.
Page 246
They would only be heated in proportion as such separation could be more easily made.
Page 260
Glass, wax, silk, wool, hair, feathers, and even wood, perfectly dry are non-conductors: that is, they resist instead of facilitating the passage of this subtle fluid.
Page 287
Franklin on Electricity having been translated into French, and printed at Paris; the Abbé Mazeas, in a Letter to Dr.
Page 293