The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 55

And this persuasion, with the kind hand of
Providence, or some guardian angel, or accidental favorable
circumstances and situations, or all together, preserved me, thro' this
dangerous time of youth, and the hazardous situations I was sometimes
in among strangers, remote from the eye and advice of my father,
without any willful gross immorality or injustice, that might have been
expected from my want of religion. I say willful, because the
instances I have mentioned had something of necessity in them, from my
youth, inexperience, and the knavery of others. I had therefore a
tolerable character to begin the world with; I valued it properly, and
determin'd to preserve it.

We had not been long return'd to Philadelphia before the new types
arriv'd from London. We settled with Keimer, and left him by his
consent before he heard of it. We found a house to hire near the
market, and took it. To lessen the rent, which was then but
twenty-four pounds a year, tho' I have since known it to let for
seventy, we took in Thomas Godfrey, a glazier, and his family, who were
to pay a considerable part of it to us, and we to board with them. We
had scarce opened our letters and put our press in order, before George
House, an acquaintance of mine, brought a countryman to us, whom he had
met in the street inquiring for a printer. All our cash was now
expended in the variety of particulars we had been obliged to procure,
and this countryman's five shillings, being our first-fruits, and
coming so seasonably, gave me more pleasure than any crown I have since
earned; and the gratitude I felt toward House has made me often more
ready than perhaps I should otherwise have been to assist young

There are croakers in every country, always boding its ruin. Such a
one then lived in Philadelphia; a person of note, an elderly man, with
a wise look and a very grave manner of speaking; his name was Samuel
Mickle. This gentleman, a stranger to me, stopt one day at my door,
and asked me if I was the young man who had lately opened a new
printing-house. Being answered in the affirmative, he said he was sorry
for me, because it was an expensive undertaking, and the expense would
be lost; for Philadelphia was a sinking place, the people already
half-bankrupts, or near being so; all appearances to the contrary, such
as new buildings and the rise of rents, being to his certain knowledge
fallacious; for they

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Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 3 [of 3]

Page 60
The assembly remind the governor of the Indian trade bill.
Page 80
But when we consider, that the inland parts of America are penetrated by great navigable rivers; that there are a number of great lakes, communicating with each other, with those rivers, and with the sea, very small portages here and there excepted[41]; that the sea-coasts (if one may be allowed the expression) of those lakes only amount at least to two thousand seven hundred miles, exclusive of the rivers running into them (many of which are navigable to a great extent for boats and canoes, through vast tracts of country); how little likely is it that the expence on the carriage of our goods into those countries should prevent the use of them.
Page 104
[49] And Pharoah said unto his people, behold the people of the children of Israel are more and mightier than we; come on, let us deal wisely with them, lest they multiply, and it come to pass, that when there falleth out any war, they join also unto our enemies and fight against us, and so get them up out of the land.
Page 118
The fact is curious, as it stands recorded in the votes of 1742-3.
Page 126
The words of the clause being, "That [the commissioners named] or the major part of them, or of the survivors of them, _with the consent_ or approbation of the governor or commander in chief of this province for the time being, shall order and appoint _the disposition of the monies_ arising by virtue of this act, for and towards paying and clothing two thousand seven hundred effective men," &c.
Page 131
They therefore, after a thorough debate, and making no less than twenty-five unanimous resolves, expressing the many grievances this province had long laboured under, through the proprietary government, came to the following resolution, viz.
Page 138
to their prejudice, and the proprietaries benefit, can you perceive no difference? When the direct and immediate rays of majesty benignly and mildly shine on all _around_ us, but are transmitted and thrown upon _us_ through the burning-glass of proprietary government, can your sensibilities feel no difference? Sheltered perhaps in proprietary offices, or benumbed with expectations, it may be you cannot.
Page 153
Page 172
The _repeal_ would fill them with joy and gratitude, re-establish their respect and veneration for parliament, restore at once their ancient and natural love for this country, and their regard for every thing that comes from it; hence the trade would be renewed in all its branches; they would again indulge in all the expensive superfluities you supply them with, and their own new assumed home industry would languish.
Page 174
-- Impracticability.
Page 188
_ But what do you imagine they will think were the motives of repealing the act? _A.
Page 251
We desire, also, that you would take the trouble of receiving from Arthur Lee, esquire, agent for the congress in England, such letters as may be sent by him to your care, and of forwarding them to us with your dispatches.
Page 270
By the collision of different sentiments, sparks of truth are struck out, and political light is obtained.
Page 295
"When you visit a person of quality (says he) and have talked over your business, or the compliments, or whatever concern brought you thither, he makes a sign to have things served in for the entertainment, which is generally a little sweetmeat, a dish of sherbet, and another of coffee; all which are immediately brought in by the servants, and tendered to all the guests in order, with the greatest care and awfulness imaginable.
Page 302
I shall conclude with observing, that in the last paragraph save one of the piece now examined, much ill nature and some good sense are co-inhabitants (as he expresses it).
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