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 4

choice, I should have no
objection to go over the same life from its beginning to the end:
requesting only the advantage authors have, of correcting in a second
edition the faults of the first. So would I also wish to change some
incidents of it for others more favourable. Notwithstanding, if this
condition was denied, I should still accept the offer of recommencing
the same life. But as this repetition is not to be expected, that which
resembles most living one's life over again, seems to be to recall all
the circumstances of it; and, to render this remembrance more durable,
to record them in writing. In thus employing myself I shall yield to the
inclination so natural to old men, of talking of themselves and their
own actions; and I shall indulge it without being tiresome to those who,
from respect to my age, might conceive themselves obliged to listen to
me, since they will be always free to read me or not. And lastly (I may
as well confess it, as the denial of it would be believed by nobody), I
shall perhaps not a little gratify my own _vanity_. Indeed, I never
heard or saw the introductory words "_Without vanity_ I may say," &c.,
but some vain thing immediately followed. Most people dislike vanity in
others, whatever share they have of it themselves; but I give it fair
quarter, wherever I meet with it, being persuaded that it is often
productive of good to the possessor, and to others who are within his
sphere of action: and therefore, in many cases, it would not be
altogether absurd if a man were to thank God for his vanity among the
other comforts of life.

And now I speak of thanking God, I desire with all humility to
acknowledge that I attribute the mentioned happiness of my past life to
his divine providence, which led me to the means I used and gave the
success. My belief of this induces me to _hope_, though I must not
_presume_, that the same goodness will still be exercised towards me, in
continuing that happiness or enabling me to bear a fatal reverse, which
I may experience as others have done; the complexion of my future
fortune being known to him only, in whose power it is to bless us, even
in our afflictions.

Some notes, one of my uncles (who had the same curiosity in collecting
family anecdotes) once put into my hands, furnished me with several
particulars relative to our ancestors. From these notes I learned that
they lived in the same village, Ecton, in

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Text Comparison with 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

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The governor read it, and seemed surprised when he was told my age.
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" This was spoken with such an appearance of cordiality, that I had not the least doubt of his meaning what he said.
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It happened that they wrought an effect on me quite contrary to what was intended by them; for the arguments of the Deists, which were quoted to be refuted, appeared to me much stronger than the refutation; in short, I soon became a thorough Deist.
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The wealthy inhabitants opposed any addition, being against all currency, from the apprehension that it would depreciate, as it had done in New-England, to the injury of all creditors.
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Now with hearty love to, and prayer for you all, I rest your affectionate father, JOSIAH FRANKLIN.
Page 74
"As I have not read any part of the life in question, but know only the character that lived it, I write somewhat at hazard.
Page 83
And like him who, having a garden to weed, does not attempt to eradicate all the bad herbs at once (which would exceed his reach and his strength), but works on one of the beds at a time, and having accomplished the first, proceeds to a second, so I should have (I hoped) the encouraging pleasure of seeing on my pages the progress made in virtue, by clearing successively my lines of their spots, till, in the end, by a number of courses, I should be happy in viewing a clean book, after a thirteen week's daily examination.
Page 117
Morris, just arrived there from England, with whom I had been before intimately acquainted.
Page 120
When I was about to depart, the returns of wagons to be obtained were brought in, by which it appeared that they amounted only to twenty-five, and not all of those were in serviceable condition.
Page 122
That the pay commence from the time of their joining the forces at Will's Creek (which must be on or before the 20th of May ensuing), and that a reasonable allowance be paid over and above for the time necessary for their travelling to Will's Creek and home again after their discharge.
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he might consider us both as merely advocates for contending clients in a suit; he for the proprietaries, and I for the Assembly: he would, therefore, sometimes call in a friendly way to advise with me on difficult points; and sometimes, though not often, take my advice.
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We were several times chased in our passage, but outsailed everything; and in thirty days had soundings.
Page 167
From this time he was also affected with the stone as well as the gout; and for the last twelve months of his life these complaints almost entirely confined him to his bed.
Page 184
_ Are they as much dissatisfied with the stamp duty as the English? _A.
Page 185
The colonies raised, clothed, and paid, during the last war, near twenty-five thousand men, and spent many millions.
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_Q.
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_Q.
Page 192
But the _principal_ distributors, who were to have had a considerable profit on the whole, have not thought it worth while to continue in the office; and I think it impossible to find sub-distributors fit to be trusted, who, for the trifling profit that must come to their share, would incur the odium and run the hazard that would attend it; and if they could be found, I think it impracticable to protect the stamps in so many distant and remote places.
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Feb.
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He heard, he saved, he placed me at his side; My state he pitied, and my tears he dried; Restrained the rage the vengeful foe expressed, And turned the deadly weapons from my breast.