The Complete Works in Philosophy, Politics and Morals of the late Dr. Benjamin Franklin, Vol. 2 [of 3]

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 168

and striking out the hands
and feet that is necessary to produce progressive motion. But you
will be no swimmer till you can place some confidence in the power of
the water to support you; I would therefore advise the acquiring that
confidence in the first place; especially as I have known several
who, by a little of the practice necessary for that purpose, have
insensibly acquired the stroke, taught as it were by nature.

The practice I mean is this. Chusing a place where the water deepens
gradually, walk coolly into it till it is up to your breast, then
turn round, your face to the shore, and throw an egg into the water
between you and the shore. It will sink to the bottom, and be easily
seen there, as your water is clear. It must lie in water so deep
as that you cannot reach it to take it up but by diving for it. To
encourage yourself in order to do this, reflect that your progress
will be from deeper to shallower water, and that at any time you may,
by bringing your legs under you and standing on the bottom, raise
your head far above the water. Then plunge under it with your eyes
open, throwing yourself towards the egg, and endeavouring by the
action of your hands and feet against the water to get forward till
within reach of it. In this attempt you will find, that the water
buoys you up against your inclination; that it is not so easy a thing
to sink as you imagined; that you cannot but by active force get down
to the egg. Thus you feel the power of the water to support you, and
learn to confide in that power; while your endeavours to overcome it,
and to reach the egg, teach you the manner of acting on the water
with your feet and hands, which action is afterwards used in swimming
to support your head higher above water, or to go forward through it.

I would the more earnestly press you to the trial of this method,
because, though I think I satisfied you that your body is lighter
than water, and that you might float in it a long time with your
mouth free for breathing, if you would put yourself in a proper
posture, and would be still and forbear struggling; yet till you have
obtained this experimental confidence in the water, I cannot depend
on your having the necessary presence of mind to recollect that
posture and the directions I gave you relating to it. The

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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 3
--Extraction of effluvial virtues by electricity impracticable.
Page 22
He was naturally more eloquent than I; words flowed copiously from his lips; and frequently I thought myself vanquished, more by his volubility than by the force of his arguments.
Page 29
This volume I found to be my old favourite Bunyan, in Dutch, a beautiful impression on fine paper, with copper-plate engravings--a dress in which I had never seen it in its original language.
Page 68
Andrew's, in Scotland, was of a different opinion.
Page 90
Chaucer too, calls his country gentleman a _franklin_; and, after describing his good housekeeping, thus characterizes him: This worthy franklin bore a purse of silk Fix'd to his girdle, white as morning milk; Knight of the shire, first justice at th' assize, To help the poor, the doubtful to advise.
Page 105
Under the marquis of Rockingham's administration, it appeared expedient to endeavour to calm the minds of the colonists; and the repeal of the odious tax was contemplated.
Page 122
--The light of a bright coal from a wood fire; and the light of a red-hot iron do it likewise; but not at so great a distance.
Page 154
This shape may be rendered visible in a still air, by raising a smoke from dry rosin dropt into a hot tea-spoon under the electrified body, which will be attracted, and spread itself equally on all sides, covering and concealing the body[49].
Page 164
Page 186
Page 191
And now we as much need an hypothesis to explain by what means the clouds become negatively, as before to shew how they became positively electrified.
Page 194
The can would not then receive another spark from the wire of the phial; but as I gradually drew up the chain, the atmosphere of the can diminished by flowing over the rising chain, and the lock of cotton accordingly drew nearer and nearer to the can; and then, if I again brought the phial wire near the can, it would receive another spark, and the cotton fly off again to its first distance; and thus, as the chain was drawn higher, the can would receive more sparks; because the can and extended chain were capable of supporting a greater atmosphere than the can with the chain gathered up into its belly.
Page 222
As soon as I have a little leisure, I will make the experiment, and send you the result.
Page 242
Can this be ascribed to the attraction of any surrounding body or matter drawing them asunder, or drawing the one away from the other? If not, and repulsion exists in nature, and in magnetism, why may it not exist in electricity? We should not, indeed, multiply causes in philosophy without necessity; and the greater simplicity of your hypothesis would recommend it to me, if I could see that all appearances would be solved by it.
Page 278
Your observations upon the electricity of fogs and the air in Ireland, and upon different circumstances of storms, appear to me very curious, and I thank you for them.
Page 304
181, 185.
Page 312
Page 320
Nantucket whalers best acquainted with it, 198.
Page 342
_Water-spouts_, observations on, ii.
Page 343
Except for those changes noted below, misspelling in the text, and inconsistent or archaic usage, have been retained.