The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 6

young, and carried his wife with three
children into New England, about 1682. The conventicles having been
forbidden by law, and frequently disturbed, induced some considerable
men of his acquaintance to remove to that country, and he was prevailed
with to accompany them thither, where they expected to enjoy their mode
of religion with freedom. By the same wife he had four children more
born there, and by a second wife ten more, in all seventeen; of which I
remember thirteen sitting at one time at his table, who all grew up to
be men and women, and married; I was the youngest son, and the youngest
child but two, and was born in Boston, New England. My mother, the
second wife, was Abiah Folger, daughter of Peter Folger, one of the
first settlers of New England, of whom honorable mention is made by
Cotton Mather in his church history of that country, entitled Magnalia
Christi Americana, as "a godly, learned Englishman," if I remember the
words rightly. I have heard that he wrote sundry small occasional
pieces, but only one of them was printed, which I saw now many years
since. It was written in 1675, in the home-spun verse of that time and
people, and addressed to those then concerned in the government there.
It was in favor of liberty of conscience, and in behalf of the
Baptists, Quakers, and other sectaries that had been under persecution,
ascribing the Indian wars, and other distresses that had befallen the
country, to that persecution, as so many judgments of God to punish so
heinous an offense, and exhorting a repeal of those uncharitable laws.
The whole appeared to me as written with a good deal of decent
plainness and manly freedom. The six concluding lines I remember,
though I have forgotten the two first of the stanza; but the purport of
them was, that his censures proceeded from good-will, and, therefore,
he would be known to be the author.

"Because to be a libeller (says he)
I hate it with my heart;
From Sherburne town, where now I dwell
My name I do put here;
Without offense your real friend,
It is Peter Folgier."

My elder brothers were

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Text Comparison with The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 1 [of 3]

Page 9
of Philadelphia, on electricity.
Page 13
A variety of remarkable incidents were told us of him at Eaton.
Page 21
When printed, he dispatched me about the town to sell them.
Page 47
Hamilton, a celebrated barrister of Philadelphia, had taken a passage to England for himself and his son, and, in conjunction with Mr.
Page 81
Cuneus, or by professor Muschenbroeck, of Leyden, which had much perplexed philosophers.
Page 125
We suspend by fine silk thread a counterfeit spider, made of a small piece of burnt cork, with legs of linnen thread, and a grain or two of lead stuck in him, to give him more weight.
Page 127
Page 159
from the stroke of lightning, by directing us to fix on the highest parts of those edifices, upright rods of iron made sharp as a needle, and gilt to prevent rusting, and from the foot of those rods a wire down the outside of the building into the ground, or down round one of the shrouds of a ship, and down her side till it reaches the water? Would not these pointed rods probably draw the electrical fire silently out of a cloud before it came nigh enough to strike, and thereby secure us from that most sudden and terrible mischief? 21.
Page 173
_ SIR, Mr.
Page 175
had its point melted off, and some part of its head and neck run.
Page 196
And with regard to conducting, though a certain thickness of metal be required to conduct a great quantity of electricity, and, at the same time, keep its own substance firm and unseparated; and a less quantity, as a very small wire for instance, will be destroyed by the explosion; yet such small wire will have answered the end of conducting that stroke, though it become incapable of conducting another.
Page 207
--Conjectures respecting the Pores of Glass.
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FOOTNOTE: [74] The wire mentioned in this account was re-placed by a small brass chain.
Page 232
[Illustration: (of the experiment below) _Plate II.
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FOOTNOTE: [78] Dr.
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It appeared to my eye as about two inches diameter, and had nothing of the zig-zag lightning motion.
Page 293
This experiment was not made upon any eminence, but in the garden of.
Page 312
on his protest, 202.
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_ defined, 378.