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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 251

and unhooking the joints without affecting the rod (_d_), except on
the inside of each hook where the joints were coupled, the surface of
which was melted (_e_), and left as cased over with solder.--No part
of the chimney was damaged (_f_), only at the foundation (_g_), where
it was shattered almost quite round, and several bricks were torn
out (_h_). Considerable cavities were made in the earth quite round
the foundation, but most within eight or nine inches of the rod. It
also shattered the bottom weather-board (_i_) at one corner of the
house, and made a large hole in the earth by the corner post. On the
other side of the chimney, it ploughed up several furrows in the
earth, some yards in length. It ran down the inside of the chimney
(_k_), carrying only soot with it; and filled the whole house with
its flash (_l_), smoke, and dust. It tore up the hearth in several
places (_m_), and broke some pieces of china in the beaufet (_n_). A
copper tea-kettle standing in the chimney was beat together, as if
some great weight had fallen upon it (_o_); and three holes, each
about half an inch diameter, melted through the bottom (_p_). What
seems to me the most surprising is, that the hearth under the kettle
was not hurt, yet the bottom of the kettle was drove inward, as if
the lightning proceeded from under it upwards (_q_), and the cover
was thrown to the middle of the floor (_r_). The fire dogs, an iron
logger-head, an Indian pot, an earthen cup, and a cat, were all in
the chimney at the time unhurt, though a great part of the hearth was
torn up (_s_). My wife's sister, two children, and a negro wench,
were all who happened to be in the house at the time: the first,
and one child, sat within five feet of the chimney; and were so
stunned, that they never saw the lightning nor heard the explosion;
the wench, with the other child in her arms, sitting at a greater
distance, was sensible of both; though every one was so stunned that
they did not recover for some time; however it pleased God that no
farther mischief ensued. The kitchen, at 90 feet distance, was full
of negroes, who were all sensible of the shock; and some of them tell
me, that they felt the rod about a minute after, when it was so hot
that they could not bear it in hand."


The foregoing very sensible and distinct account may afford a

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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 5
355 Account of the first campaign made by the British forces in America 357 Probability of a separation 358 Letter to Monsieur Dumas, urging him to sound the several courts of Europe, by means of their ambassadors at the Hague, as to any assistance they may be disposed to afford America in her struggle for independence 360 Letter from Lord Howe to Dr.
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Britain had been borne by the settlers themselves? and would not the hardship appear yet greater, if the people of the new country should be allowed no representatives in the parliament enacting such impositions? Now I look on the colonies as so many countries gained to Great Britain, and more advantageous to it, than if they had been gained out of the seas around its coasts, and joined to its lands; for being in different climates, they afford greater variety of produce, and materials for more manufactures; and being separated by the ocean, they increase much more its shipping and seamen: and, since they are all included in the British empire, which has only extended itself by their means; and the strength and wealth of the parts is the strength and wealth of the whole; what imports it to the general state, whether a merchant, a smith, or a hatter, grow rich in Old or New England? and if, through increase of people, two smiths are wanted for one employed before, why may not the _new_ smith be allowed to live and thrive in the _new_ country, as well as the _old_ one in the _old_? In fine, why should the countenance of a state be _partially_ afforded to its people, unless it be most in favour of those who have most merit? and if there be any difference, those who have most contributed to enlarge Britain's empire and commerce, increase her strength, her wealth, and the numbers of her people, at the risque of their own lives and private fortunes in new and strange countries, methinks ought rather to expect some preference.
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_ by a tax on all real and personal estates.
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While the war continues, its final event is quite uncertain.
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Even that of 1733, which she commenced with declarations of her having no ambitious views, and which finished by a treaty, at which the ministers of France repeatedly declared, that she desired nothing for herself, in effect gained for her Lorrain, an indemnification ten times the value of all her North American possessions.
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The waves do not rise but when the winds blow.
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It is therefore hoped, that securing the full discharge of British debts, which are payable here, and in all justice and reason ought to be fully discharged here in sterling money; the restraint on the legal tender within the colonies will be taken off; at least for those colonies that desire it, and where the merchants trading to them make no objection to it[56].
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Here then we have a full view of the assembly's injustice; about which there has been so much insolent triumph! But let the proprietaries and their discreet deputies hereafter recollect and remember, that the same august tribunal, which censured some of the modes and circumstances of that act, did at the same time establish and confirm the grand principle of the act, viz.
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" _Thursday, March 31, 1763.
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Britain, and the colonies only reaped the benefit, without hitherto sharing the burthen, and were therefore now indebted to Britain on that account.
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_ Why so? _A.
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If any are not yet so established, the colonies have right to such laws: and the covenant having been made in the charters by the king, for himself and his successors, such laws ought to receive the royal assent_ as of right.
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[111] [The] referring to an old act made for the trial of treasons committed out of the realm, by such persons as had no legal resiancy but within the realm, and who were of the realm, applying the purview of that statute, which was made to bring subjects of the realm who had committed treason out of the realm (where there was _no criminal jurisdiction to which they could be amenable_) to trial within.
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The writer of this has known several instances of large tracts of land, bought, on what was then the frontier of Pennsylvania, for ten pounds per hundred acres, which, when the settlements had been extended far beyond them, sold readily, without any improvement made upon them, for three pounds per acre.
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" He was reproved for the supposed extravagance of the sentiment, and he did not justify it.
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Among these witty gentlemen let us take a view of Ridentius: what a contemptible figure does he make with his train of paltry admirers? This wight shall give himself an hour's diversion with the cock of a man's hat, the heels of his shoes, an unguarded expression in his discourse, or even some personal defect; and the height of his low ambition is to put some one of the company to the blush, who perhaps must pay an equal share of the reckoning with himself.
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In the American Museum, from which we have taken Dr.
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why quitted by him in his youth, 27, its inhabitants decrease, ii.