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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 109

drawer is indeed a circumstance that cannot attend the colony bills;
for the reasons just above-mentioned; their cash being drawn from
them by the British trade; but the legal tender being substituted in
its place is rather a greater advantage to the possessor; since he
need not be at the trouble of going to a _particular bank_ or banker
to demand the money, finding (wherever he has occasion to lay out
money in the province) a person that is obliged to take the bills.
So that even out of the province, the knowledge, that every man
within that province is obliged to take its money, gives the bills a
credit among its neighbours, nearly equal to what they have at home.

And were it not for the laws _here_, that restrain or prohibit as
much as possible all losing trades, the cash of _this_ country would
soon be exported: every merchant, who had occasion to remit it,
would run to the bank with all its bills, that came into his hands,
and take out his part of its treasure for that purpose; so that in
a short time, it would be no more able to pay bills in money upon
sight, than it is now in the power of a colony treasury so to do. And
if government afterwards should have occasion for the credit of the
bank, it must of necessity make its bills a legal tender; funding
them however on taxes by which they may in time be paid off; as
has been the general practice in the colonies.--At this very time,
even the silver-money in England is obliged to the legal tender for
part of its value; that part which is the difference between its
real weight and its denomination. Great part of the shillings and
sixpences now current are, by wearing, become five, ten, twenty,
and some of the sixpences even fifty per cent. too light. For
this difference between the _real_ and the _nominal_, you have no
_intrinsic_ value; you have not so much as paper, you have nothing.
It is the legal tender, with the knowledge that it can easily be
repassed for the same value, that makes three-pennyworth of silver
pass for sixpence. Gold and silver have undoubtedly _some_ properties
that give them a fitness above paper, as a medium of exchange;
particularly their _universal estimation_; especially in cases where
a country has occasion to carry its money abroad, either as a stock
to trade with, or to purchase _allies_ and _foreign succours_.
Otherwise, that very universal estimation is an inconvenience, which
paper-money is free from; since it tends

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Text Comparison with Franklin's Autobiography (Eclectic English Classics)

Page 10
's reign, when some of the ministers that had been outed for nonconformity,[14] holding conventicles in Northamptonshire, Benjamin and Josiah adhered to them, and so continued all their lives; the rest of the family remained with the Episcopal Church.
Page 20
" I remember his being dissuaded by some of his friends from the undertaking, as not likely to succeed, one newspaper being, in their judgment, enough for America.
Page 23
, turned out of the church for not conforming to the usages of the Church of England and for holding meetings of dissenters for public worship.
Page 31
Page 42
] [Footnote 57: Lev.
Page 57
I gave an inventory to the father, who carried it to a merchant; the things were sent for, the secret was to be kept till they should arrive, and in the mean time I was to get work, if I could, at the other printing house.
Page 65
The wealthy inhabitants opposed any addition, being against all paper currency, from an apprehension that it would depreciate, as it had done in New England, to the prejudice of all creditors.
Page 68
Page 75
" DRYDEN, _[OE]dipus_, act iii.
Page 89
"But that the most acceptable service of God is doing good to man.
Page 92
These things I mention as a caution to young printers, and that they may be encouraged not to pollute their presses and disgrace their profession by such infamous practices, but refuse steadily, as they may see by my example that such a course of conduct will not, on the whole, be injurious to their interests.
Page 94
As we played pretty equally, we thus beat one another into that language.
Page 96
Page 99
I thereupon wrote a paper to be read in Junto, representing these irregularities, but insisting more particularly on the inequality of this six-shilling tax of the constables respecting the circumstances of those who paid it, since a poor widow housekeeper, all whose property to be guarded by the watch did not perhaps exceed the value of fifty pounds, paid as much as the wealthiest merchant, who had thousands of pounds' worth of goods in his stores.
Page 102
My answer was: "You know my house; if you can make shift with its scanty accommodations, you will be most heartily welcome.
Page 130
This I did, and they were agreed to, and a commission and instructions accordingly prepared immediately.
Page 153
He set out for New York before me; and, as the time for dispatching the packet boats was at his disposition, and there were two then remaining there, one of which, he said, was to sail very soon, I requested to know the precise time, that I might not miss her by any delay of mine.
Page 159
About nine o'clock the fog began to rise, and seemed to be lifted up from the water like the curtain at a playhouse, discovering underneath the town of Falmouth, the vessels in its harbor, and the fields that surrounded it.
Page 168
Page 173
There are no gains without pains.