The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 19

it, which my
brother took very kindly, while others began to consider me in an
unfavorable light, as a young genius that had a turn for libelling and
satyr. My brother's discharge was accompany'd with an order of the
House (a very odd one), that "James Franklin should no longer print the
paper called the New England Courant."

There was a consultation held in our printing-house among his friends,
what he should do in this case. Some proposed to evade the order by
changing the name of the paper; but my brother, seeing inconveniences
in that, it was finally concluded on as a better way, to let it be
printed for the future under the name of BENJAMIN FRANKLIN; and to
avoid the censure of the Assembly, that might fall on him as still
printing it by his apprentice, the contrivance was that my old
indenture should be return'd to me, with a full discharge on the back
of it, to be shown on occasion, but to secure to him the benefit of my
service, I was to sign new indentures for the remainder of the term,
which were to be kept private. A very flimsy scheme it was; however,
it was immediately executed, and the paper went on accordingly, under
my name for several months.

At length, a fresh difference arising between my brother and me, I took
upon me to assert my freedom, presuming that he would not venture to
produce the new indentures. It was not fair in me to take this
advantage, and this I therefore reckon one of the first errata of my
life; but the unfairness of it weighed little with me, when under the
impressions of resentment for the blows his passion too often urged him
to bestow upon me, though he was otherwise not an ill-natur'd man:
perhaps I was too saucy and provoking.

When he found I would leave him, he took care to prevent my getting
employment in any other printing-house of the town, by going round and
speaking to every master, who accordingly refus'd to give me work. I
then thought of going to New York, as the nearest place where there was
a printer; and I was rather inclin'd to leave Boston when I reflected
that I had already made myself a little obnoxious to the governing
party, and, from the arbitrary proceedings of the Assembly in my
brother's case, it was likely I might, if I stay'd, soon bring myself
into scrapes; and farther, that my indiscrete disputations about
religion began to make me pointed at with horror

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Text Comparison with Benjamin Franklin Representative selections, with introduction, bibliograpy, and notes

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" Stresses Locke's tolerance, rationalism, and natural religion.
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He had some Letters, and was ingenious, but much of an Unbeliever, and wickedly undertook, some Years after to travesty the Bible in doggrel Verse as Cotton had done Virgil.
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Free from the bitter Rage of Party Zeal, All those we love who seek the publick Weal.
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At Chester-River, the 2d Sunday in April.
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Our _Art of Virtue_ may, therefore, be of great service to those whose faith is unhappily not so strong, and may come in aid of its weakness.
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You say, poor labourers cannot afford to buy bread at a high price, unless they had higher wages.
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The trouble of future complaints will be prevented, and Governors and Judges will be encouraged to farther acts of oppression and injustice; and thence the people may become more disaffected, and at length desperate.
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3d, 1782.
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war with your ancient enemies, rather than be without a war, you chose to make one upon your friends.
Page 756
The African's Speech, as translated, is as follows: _"Allah Bismillah, &c.
Page 765
But, if I go into a white Man's House at Albany, and ask for Victuals and Drink, they say, 'Where is your Money?' and if I have none, they say, 'Get out, you Indian Dog.