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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 128

those of the people, and who must therefore
reap at least equal advantages from those bills with the people,
could nevertheless wish to be exempted from their share of the
unavoidable disadvantages. Is there upon earth a man besides, with
any conception of what is honest, with any notion of honour, with
the least tincture in his veins of the gentleman, but would have
blushed at the thought; but would have rejected with disdain such
undue preference, if it had been offered him? Much less would he have
struggled for it, moved heaven and earth to obtain it, resolved to
ruin thousands of his tenants by a repeal of the act, rather than
miss of it[63]; and enforce it afterwards by an audaciously wicked
instruction; forbidding aids to his king, and exposing the province
to destruction, unless it was complied with. And yet,--These are
_honourable_ men[64].

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. "That
the proprietary estate ought, with other estates, to be taxed:" and
thereby did in effect determine and pronounce, that the opposition
so long made in various shapes to that just principle, by the
proprietaries, was fundamentally _wrong_ and _unjust_. An injustice
they were not, like the assembly, under any necessity of committing
for the public good, or any other necessity but what was imposed on
them by those base passions, that act the tyrant in bad minds; their
selfishness, their pride, and their avarice.

I have frequently mentioned the _equitable intentions_ of the house
in those parts of the act, that were supposed obscure, and how they
were understood here. A clear proof thereof is found, as I have
already said, in the actual execution of the act; in the execution
of it before the contest about it in England; and therefore before
their lordships' objections to it had a being. When the report came
over, and was laid before the house, one year's tax had been levied:
and the assembly, conscious that no injustice had been intended to
the proprietaries, and willing to rectify it if any should appear,
appointed a _committee_ of members from the several counties to
examine into the state of the proprietaries' taxes through the
province, and nominated on that committee a gentleman of known
attachment to the proprietaries, and their chief justice, Mr. Allen;
to

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with Experiments and Observations on Electricity Made at Philadelphia in America

Page 1
S.
Page 4
Touch the top first, and on approaching the bottom with the other end, you have a constant stream of fire, from the wire entering the bottle.
Page 7
To prove that the electrical fire is _drawn off_ by the point, if you take the blade of the bodkin out of the wooden handle, and fix it in a stick of sealing wax, and then present it at the distance aforesaid, or if you bring it very near, no such effect follows; but sliding one finger along the wax till you touch the blade, and the ball flies to the shot immediately.
Page 12
But if the phials were charged, the one through the hook, and the other[3] through the coating, the ball, when it is repelled from one hook, will be as strongly attracted by the other, and play vigorously between them, 'till both phials are nearly discharged.
Page 15
--Which demonstrated the power to reside in glass as glass, and that the non-electrics in contact served only, like the armature of a loadstone, to unite the force of the several parts, and bring them at once to any point desired: it being a property of a non-electric, that the whole body instantly receives or gives what electrical fire is given to or taken from any one of its parts.
Page 16
I perceive by the ingenious Mr _Watson_'s last book, lately received, that Dr _Bevis_ had used, before we had, panes of glass to give a shock; though, till that book came to hand, I thought to have communicated it to you as a novelty.
Page 17
The operator, who holds the picture by the upper-end, where the inside of the frame is not gilt, to prevent its falling, feels nothing of the shock, and may touch the face of the picture without danger, which he pretends is a test of his loyalty.
Page 20
Place an iron shot on a glass stand, and let a ball of damp cork, suspended by a silk thread, hang in contact with the shot.
Page 23
Three particles of water then being attached to the three particles of a triangle of air, would by their mutual attraction operating against the air's repulsion, shorten the sides and lessen the triangle, whereby that portion of air being made denser, would sink to the earth with its water, and not rise to contribute to the formation of a cloud.
Page 25
35.
Page 32
Thus will a quantity of the electrical fluid be drawn out of B, and thrown on A.
Page 33
Between F, A, H, there is a larger portion that has yet a less surface to rest on and to attract it; here therefore you can get it away still more easily.
Page 34
e.
Page 39
We once took two pieces of thick looking-glass, as broad as a Gunter's scale, and 6 inches long; and placing leaf gold between them, put them betwixt two smoothly plain'd pieces of wood, and fix'd them tight in a book-binder's small press; yet though they were so closely confined, the force of the electrical shock shivered the glass into many pieces.
Page 42
I know it is commonly thought that it easily pervades glass, and the experiment of a feather suspended by a thread in a bottle hermetically sealed, yet moved by bringing a nibbed tube near the outside of the bottle, is alledged to prove it.
Page 45
surface than the glass would naturally draw in; this increases the repelling power on that side, and overpowering the attraction on the other, drives out part of the fluid that had been imbibed by that surface, if there be any non-electric ready to receive it: such there is in all cases where glass is electrified to give a shock.
Page 49
a strong purgative liquid, and then charged the phial, and took repeated shocks from it, in which case every particle of the electrical fluid must, before it went through my body, have first gone through the liquid when the phial is charging, and returned through it when discharging, yet no other effect followed than if it had been charged with water.
Page 51
This is since done.
Page 52
Translated from the Original, dedicated to the French King.
Page 53
This when brought to the lips gives a shock, if the party be close shaved, and does not breathe.