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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 243

were possible, from this instance, to invent a method of
embalming drowned persons, in such a manner that they may be recalled to
life at any period, however distant; for, having a very ardent desire to
see and observe the state of America a hundred years hence, I should
prefer to any ordinary death the being immersed in a cask of Madeira
wine, with a few friends, till that time, to be then recalled to life by
the solar warmth of my dear country! But since, in all probability, we
live in an age too early and too near the infancy of science to hope to
see such an art brought in our time to its perfection, I must, for the
present, content myself with the treat which you are so kind as to
promise me, of the resuscitation of a fowl or a turkey-cock.


* * * * *


The following admirable sketch of the character of Franklin is from a
new work by Lord Brougham, recently published in London, entitled
"Statesmen in the time of George III." It has not been published in this

"One of the most remarkable men, certainly, of our times as a
politician, or of any age as a philosopher, was Franklin, who also
stands alone in combining together these two characters, the greatest
that man can sustain, and in this, that having borne the first part in
enlarging science by one of the greatest discoveries ever made, he bore
the second part in founding one of the greatest empires.

"In this truly great man everything seemed to concur that goes towards
the constitution of exalted merit. First, he was the architect of his
own fortune. Born in the humblest station, he raised himself, by his
talents and his industry, first, to the place in society which may be
attained with the help only of ordinary abilities, great application,
and good luck; but next, to the loftier heights which a daring and happy
genius alone can scale; and the poor printer's boy, who at one period of
his life had

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Text Comparison with Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

Page 5
" It was a most important post.
Page 11
Accordingly, I was employed in cutting wick for the candles, filling the dipping mold and the molds for cast candles,[21] attending the shop, going of errands, etc.
Page 25
] Sec.
Page 31
He said I appeared a young man of promising parts, and therefore should be encouraged; the printers at Philadelphia were wretched ones; and, if I would set up there, he made no doubt I should succeed; for his part, he would procure me the public business, and do me every other service in his power.
Page 37
All this seemed very reasonable; but I had formerly been a great lover of fish, and when this came hot out of the frying pan it smelled admirably well.
Page 59
I grew convinced that truth, sincerity, and integrity in dealings between man and man were of the utmost importance to the felicity of life; and I formed written resolutions, which still remain in my journal book, to practice them ever while I lived.
Page 63
Meredith was no compositor, a poor pressman, and seldom sober.
Page 65
" "No," said he, "my father has really been disappointed, and is really unable; and I am unwilling to distress him further.
Page 73
I never doubted, for instance, the existence of the Deity; that he made the world, and governed it by his providence; that the most acceptable service of God was the doing good to man; that our souls are immortal; and that all crime will be punished, and virtue rewarded, either here or hereafter.
Page 74
" I returned to the use of this, and went no more to the public assemblies.
Page 86
I did, indeed, from time to time, put down short hints of the sentiments, reasonings, etc.
Page 101
As he proceeded I began to soften, and concluded to give the coppers.
Page 133
I have no particular interest in this affair, as, except the satisfaction of endeavoring to do good, I shall have only my labor for my pains.
Page 139
His amendment was, "for _not_ read _only_"--a small, but very material, alteration.
Page 141
Our axes, of which we had seventy, were immediately set to work to cut down trees, and, our men being dexterous in the use of them, great dispatch was made.
Page 145
Just as I was getting on horseback they came to my door, between thirty and forty, mounted, and all in their uniforms.
Page 150
He said much to me, also, of the proprietor's good disposition toward the province, and of the advantage it might be to us all, and to me in particular, if the opposition that had been so long continued to his measures was dropped, and harmony restored between him and the people; in effecting which it was thought no one could be more serviceable than myself, and I might depend on adequate acknowledgments and recompenses,.
Page 157
We were, passengers included, about forty persons.
Page 159
, that we were near our port, but a thick fog hid the land from our sight.
Page 162
Some changes were, however, recommended, and we also engaged they should be made by a subsequent law, but the Assembly did not think them necessary; for one year's.