Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 1 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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 136

some time with persons
who came to see these new wonders. To divide a little this encumbrance
among my friends, I caused a number of similar tubes to be blown in our
glasshouse, with which they furnished themselves, so that we had at
length several performers. Among these the principal was Mr. Kinnersly,
an ingenious neighbour, who, being out of business, I encouraged to
undertake showing the experiments for money, and drew up for him two
lectures, in which the experiments were ranged in such order, and
accompanied with explanations in such method, as that the foregoing
should assist in comprehending the following. He procured an elegant
apparatus for the purpose, in which all the little machines that I had
roughly made for myself were neatly formed by instrument-makers. His
lectures were well-attended and gave great satisfaction; and, after some
time, he went through the colonies, exhibiting them in every capital
town, and picked up some money. In the West India islands, indeed, it
was with difficulty the experiments could be made, from the general
moisture of the air.

Obliged as we were to Mr. Collinson for the present of the tube, &c., I
thought it right he should be informed of our success in using it, and
wrote him several letters containing accounts of our experiments. He got
them read in the Royal Society, where they were not at first thought
worth so much notice as to be printed in their transactions. One paper
which I wrote for Mr. Kinnersly, on the sameness of lightning with
electricity, I sent to Mr. Mitchel, an acquaintance of mine, and one of
the members also of that society; who wrote me word that it had been
read, but was laughed at by the connoisseurs. The papers, however, being
shown to Dr. Fothergill, he thought them of too much value to be
stifled, and advised the printing of them. Mr. Collinson then gave them
to _Cave_ for publication in his _Gentleman's Magazine_; but he chose to
print them separately in a pamphlet, and Dr. Fothergill wrote the
preface. _Cave_, it seems, judged rightly for his profession; for, by
the additions that arrived afterward, they swelled to a quarto volume;
which has had five editions, and cost him nothing for copy-money.

It was, however, some time before those papers were much taken notice of
in England. A copy of them happening to fall into the hands of the Count
de Buffon (a philosopher deservedly of great reputation in France, and,
indeed, all over Europe), he prevailed with Monsieur Dubourg to
translate them into French; and they were printed at Paris. The

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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 1
To Madame Brillon, of Passy 40 The Whistle.
Page 28
Let us consider some of the virtues singly.
Page 32
And whatever may have been imputed to some other studies, under the notion of insignificance and loss of time, yet these, I believe, never caused repentance in any, except it was for their remissness in the prosecution of them.
Page 40
And in philosophy how small our progress! Alas! art is long and life is short! My friends would comfort me with the idea of a name they say I shall leave behind me; and they tell me I have lived long enough to nature and to glory.
Page 45
, for building, the value of my corn will be arrested and remain with me, and at the end of the year we may all be better clothed and better lodged.
Page 49
He that loses five shillings, not only loses that sum, but all the advantage that might be made by turning it in dealing, which, by the time that a young man becomes old, will amount to a considerable sum of money.
Page 54
_ Neither will any of you, whom I leave behind, have equal satisfaction in life, in the dark declining age which I see is already begun.
Page 65
Her successor, King James I.
Page 70
[6] Citizen's Journal.
Page 88
the pot, and _my dear thought really it had been but eleven_.
Page 125
We therefore have not the occasion you imagine, of fleets or standing armies, but may leave those expensive machines to be maintained for the pomp of princes and the wealth of ancient states.
Page 137
It is absurd to trouble all the world with them, and unjust to subscribers in distant places, to stuff their paper with matter so unprofitable and so disagreeable.
Page 152
his master that he would break his leg.
Page 165
I am sure the want of it is not more to our disadvantage than to yours.
Page 190
, a perpendicular pulsation or succussion.
Page 204
The surface of the earth is also sometimes much heated by the sun: and such heated surface, not being changed, heats the air that moves over it.
Page 205
Page 206
Yet, hoping we may, in time, sift out the truth between us, I will send you my present thoughts, with some observations on your reasons on the accounts in the _Transactions_, and on other relations I have met with.
Page 238
In this attempt you will find that the water buoys you up against your inclination; that it is not so easy a thing to sink as you imagined; that you cannot, but by active force, get down to the egg.
Page 245
proverbs and feign parables for the guidance of apprenticed youths and servile maidens; and the hands that sketched a free constitution for a whole continent, or drew down the lightning from heaven, easily and cheerfully lent themselves to simplify the apparatus by which truths were to be illustrated or discoveries pursued.