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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 140

word _often_ seems a little
unluckily chosen: the flame that is often put out, must be as often
lit. If our government hath often been administered with remarkable
harmony, it hath as often been administered with remarkable discord:
one often is as numerous as the other. And his majesty, if he
should take the trouble of looking over our disputes (to which the
petitioners, to save themselves a little pains, modestly and decently
refer him) where will he, for twenty years past, find any but
_proprietary_ disputes concerning proprietary interests; or disputes
that have been connected with and arose from them?

The petition proceeds to assure his majesty, "that this province
(except from the Indian ravages) enjoys the _most perfect internal
tranquillity_!"--Amazing! what! the most perfect tranquillity! when
there have been three atrocious riots within a few months! when
in two of them, horrid murders were committed on twenty innocent
persons; and in the third, no less than one hundred and forty like
murders were meditated, and declared to be intended, with as many
more as should be occasioned by any opposition! when we know that
these rioters and murderers have none of them been punished, have
never been prosecuted, have not even been apprehended! when we are
frequently told, that they intend still to execute their purposes,
as soon as the protection of the king's forces is withdrawn! Is
our tranquillity more perfect now, than it was between the first
riot and the second, or between the second and the third? And why
"except the Indian ravages," is a _little intermission_ to be
denominated "the most perfect tranquillity?" For the Indians too
have been quiet lately. Almost as well might ships in an engagement
talk of the most perfect tranquillity between two broadsides. But
"a spirit of riot and violence is foreign to the general temper
of the inhabitants." I hope and believe it is; the assembly have
said nothing to the contrary. And yet is there not too much of it?
Are there not pamphlets continually written, and daily sold in our
streets, to justify and encourage it? Are not the mad armed mob in
those writings instigated to embrue their hands in the blood of their
fellow-citizens, by first applauding their murder of the Indians,
and then representing the assembly and their friends as worse than
Indians, as having privately stirred up the Indians to murder the
white people, and armed and rewarded them for that purpose? LIES,
gentlemen, villanous as ever the malice of hell invented, and which,
to do you justice, not one of you believes, though you would have the
mob believe them.

But your

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Text Comparison with Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 1 of 2] With His Most Interesting Essays, Letters, and Miscellaneous Writings; Familiar, Moral, Political, Economical, and Philosophical, Selected with Care from All His Published Productions, and Comprising Whatever Is Most Entertaining and Valuable to the General Reader

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I continued this method some few years, but gradually left it, retaining only the habit of expressing myself in terms of modest diffidence; never using, when I advanced anything that might possibly be disputed, the word _certainly_, _undoubtedly_, or any other that gave the air of positiveness to an opinion; but rather said, I _conceive_ or _apprehend_ a thing to be so and so; it _appears to me_, or I should not think it is so, for such and such reasons; or I _imagine it to be so_; or _it is so, if I am not mistaken_.
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I walked towards the top of the street, gazing about, still in Market-street, where I met a boy with bread.
Page 31
Finding him at last beginning to tire, we drew him into the boat, and brought him home dripping wet.
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I had hitherto kept the proposition of my setting up a secret in Philadelphia, and I still kept it.
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He was to preach the doctrines, and I was to confound all opponents.
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Ralph and I were inseparable companions.
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We went together to Burlington, where I executed the whole to satisfaction; and he received so large a sum for the work as to be enabled thereby to keep himself longer from ruin.
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13.
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, to be destroyed, that he might have more horses to assist his flight towards the settlements, and less lumber to remove.
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I gave him a commission, and, parading the garrison, had it read before them, and introduced him to them as an officer who, from his skill in military affairs, was much more fit to command them than myself, and, giving them a little exhortation, took my leave.
Page 144
, that I had furnished to Braddock, some of which accounts could not sooner be obtained from the different persons I had employed to assist in the business; I presented them to Lord Loudon, desiring to be paid the balance.
Page 145
The casks of water, it seems, had been placed forward; these he therefore ordered to be moved farther aft, on which the ship recovered her character, and proved the best sailer in the fleet.
Page 153
Even the cold regions of Russia were penetrated by the ardour for discovery.
Page 159
Considering the white people as their friends, they apprehended no danger from them.
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He is dressed in a Roman toga.
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* * * * _Q.
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For Jove unfolds the hospitable door, 'Tis Jove that sends the strangers and the poor.
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_[22] To obtain an infinite variety of purposes by a few plain principles, is the characteristic of nature.