The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 40

him, the whole he could muster having been
expended in paying his passage. I had fifteen pistoles; so he borrowed
occasionally of me to subsist, while he was looking out for business.
He first endeavored to get into the playhouse, believing himself
qualify'd for an actor; but Wilkes, to whom he apply'd, advis'd him
candidly not to think of that employment, as it was impossible he
should succeed in it. Then he propos'd to Roberts, a publisher in
Paternoster Row, to write for him a weekly paper like the Spectator, on
certain conditions, which Roberts did not approve. Then he endeavored
to get employment as a hackney writer, to copy for the stationers and
lawyers about the Temple, but could find no vacancy.

I immediately got into work at Palmer's, then a famous printing-house
in Bartholomew Close, and here I continu'd near a year. I was pretty
diligent, but spent with Ralph a good deal of my earnings in going to
plays and other places of amusement. We had together consumed all my
pistoles, and now just rubbed on from hand to mouth. He seem'd quite
to forget his wife and child, and I, by degrees, my engagements with
Miss Read, to whom I never wrote more than one letter, and that was to
let her know I was not likely soon to return. This was another of the
great errata of my life, which I should wish to correct if I were to
live it over again. In fact, by our expenses, I was constantly kept
unable to pay my passage.

At Palmer's I was employed in composing for the second edition of
Wollaston's "Religion of Nature." Some of his reasonings not appearing
to me well founded, I wrote a little metaphysical piece in which I made
remarks on them. It was entitled "A Dissertation on Liberty and
Necessity, Pleasure and Pain." I inscribed it to my friend Ralph; I
printed a small number. It occasion'd my being more consider'd by Mr.
Palmer as a young man of some ingenuity, tho' he seriously expostulated
with me upon the principles of my pamphlet, which to him appear'd
abominable. My printing this pamphlet was another erratum. While I
lodg'd in Little Britain, I made an acquaintance with one Wilcox, a
bookseller, whose shop was at the next door. He had an immense
collection of second-hand books. Circulating libraries were not then
in use; but we agreed that, on certain reasonable terms, which I have
now forgotten, I might take, read, and

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Text Comparison with Experiments and Observations on Electricity Made at Philadelphia in America

Page 2
is electrised _positively_ or _plus_, the bottom of the bottle is electrised _negatively_ or _minus_, in exact proportion: _i.
Page 3
The shock to the nerves (or convulsion rather) is occasion'd by the sudden passing of the fire through the body in its way from the top to the bottom of the bottle.
Page 11
[2]--This I mention because the _European_ papers, on Electricity, frequently speak of rubbing the tube, as a fatiguing exercise.
Page 14
Thus, the whole force of the bottle, and power of giving a shock, is in the GLASS ITSELF; the non-electrics in contact with the two surfaces, serving only to _give_ and _receive_ to and from the several parts of the glass; that is, to give on one side, and take away from the other.
Page 16
--Hold the picture horizontally by the top, and place a little moveable gilt crown on the king's-head.
Page 25
Hence the sudden fall of rain immediately after flashes of lightning.
Page 26
of electrical attraction is far beyond the distance of flashing.
Page 27
As electrified clouds pass over a country, high hills and high trees, lofty towers, spires, masts of ships, chimneys, _&c.
Page 29
s 1.
Page 33
But there is a small portion between I, B, K, that has less of the surface to rest on, and to be attracted by, than the neighbouring portions, while at the same time there is a mutual repulsion between its particles and the particles of those portions, therefore here you can get it with more ease or at a greater distance.
Page 34
To understand this, we may consider, that if a person standing on the floor would draw off the electrical atmosphere from an electrified body, an iron crow and a blunt knitting kneedle held alternately in his hand and presented for that purpose, do not draw with different forces in proportion to their different masses.
Page 35
It is cover'd with _Dutch_ emboss'd paper, almost totally gilt.
Page 37
We did not think of its being deprived of sight;.
Page 40
Cut a piece of _Dutch_ gold (which is fittest for these experiments on account of its greater strength) into the form of FIG.
Page 42
And yet the bottle by this means is charged![9] And therefore the fire that thus leaves.
Page 43
But when this is done, there is no more in the glass, nor less than before, just as much having left it on one side as it received on the other.
Page 44
Now the departing fire leaving a vacuum, as aforesaid, between these pores, which air nor water are fine enough to enter and fill, the electrical fluid (which is every where ready in what we call the non-electrics, and in the non-electric Mixtures that are in the air,) is attracted in: yet does not become fixed with the substance of the glass, but subsists there as water in a porous stone, retained only by the attraction of the fixed parts, itself still loose and a fluid.
Page 45
Page 49
a strong purgative liquid, and then charged the phial, and took repeated shocks from it, in which case every particle of the electrical fluid must, before it went through my body, have first gone through the liquid when the phial is charging, and returned through it when discharging, yet no other effect followed than if it had been charged with water.
Page 51
Of the Nature and Principles of Geography; its ancient and present State in all Nations, its Usefulness to Persons of all Professions, and the Method.