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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 145

sign it.
The truth is, that his number of souls is vastly exaggerated. The
dwelling-houses in the province in 1752 did not exceed 20,000.
Political arithmeticians reckon generally but five souls to a
house, one house with another; and therefore, allowing for houses
since built, there are not probably more than an hundred and ten
thousand souls in the province; that of these, scarce twenty two
thousand could with any propriety be petitioners. And considering
the scattered settlement of the province; the general inattention
of mankind, especially in new countries, to public affairs; and
the indefatigable pains taken by the proprietaries' new allies the
presbyterian clergy of Philadelphia, (who wrote circular letters to
every congregation in the county, to deter them from petitioning, by
dutiful intimations, that if we were reduced to a royal government,
it would be the "ruin of the province;") it is a wonder the number
(near a sixth part) was so great as it was. But if there had been
no such petitions, it would not have been material to the point.
The _assembly_ went upon another foundation. They had adjourned to
consult their constituents; they returned satisfied that the measure
was agreeable to them, and _nothing appeared to the contrary_.

[68] The assembly being called upon by the governor for their advice
on that occasion did, in a message, advise his sending for and
examining the magistrates of Lancaster county and borough, where the
murders were committed, in order to discover the actors; but neither
that nor any of the other measures recommended were ever taken.
Proclamations indeed were published, but soon discontinued.

[69] Mr. Galloway's speech is of course omitted here. _Editor._




_Remarks on a late Protest against the Appointment of Mr. Franklin
as Agent for this Province_ [of Pensylvania].


I have generally passed over, with a silent disregard, the _nameless_
abusive pieces that have been written against me; and though this
paper, called a _protest_, is signed by some respectable names, I
was, nevertheless, inclined to treat it with the same indifference;
but, as the assembly is therein reflected on upon my account, it is
thought more my duty to make some remarks upon it.

I would first observe then, that this mode of _protesting_ by the
minority, with a string of reasons against the proceedings of the
majority of the house of assembly, is quite new among us; the present
is the second we have had of the kind, and both within a few months.
It is unknown to the practice of the house of commons, or of any
house of representatives in America, that I have heard

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with Memoirs of Benjamin Franklin; Written by Himself. [Vol. 2 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

Page 14
What though you have found no treasure, nor has any rich relation left you a legacy? _Diligence is the mother of luck, and God gives all things to industry.
Page 16
So much for industry, my friends, and attention to one's own business; but to these we must add frugality, if we would make our industry more certainly successful.
Page 83
No less than seven hundred privateers were, it is said, commissioned in the last war! These were fitted out by merchants, to prey upon other merchants who had never done them any injury.
Page 91
I always judged by your behaviour when a child, that you would make a good, agreeable woman, and you know you were ever my peculiar favourite.
Page 95
Jane Mecom, Boston.
Page 125
We therefore have not the occasion you imagine, of fleets or standing armies, but may leave those expensive machines to be maintained for the pomp of princes and the wealth of ancient states.
Page 144
Let me conclude by saying to you what I have had too frequent occasion to say to my other remaining old friends, _the fewer we become, the more let us love one another_.
Page 145
Percival.
Page 148
to me to be the creature of public convention.
Page 168
Barclay was elected.
Page 176
"} PHILOSOPHICAL SUBJECTS.
Page 179
While the iron continues soft and hot, it is only a temporary magnet; if it cools or grows hard in that situation, it becomes a permanent one, the magnetic fluid not easily resuming its equilibrium.
Page 181
too deep and too difficult to be come at; but the shell of the earth being broke, and the fragments thrown into this oblique position, the disjointed ends of a great number of strata of different kinds are brought up to day, and a great variety of useful materials put into our power, which would otherwise have remained eternally concealed from us.
Page 182
Has the question, how came the earth by its magnetism, ever been considered? Is it likely that _iron ore_ immediately existed when this globe was at first formed; or may it not rather be supposed a gradual production of time? If the earth is at present magnetical, in virtue of the masses of iron ore contained in it, might not some ages pass before it had magnetic polarity? Since iron ore may exist without that polarity, and, by being placed in certain circumstances, may obtain it from an external cause, is it not possible that the earth received its magnetism from some such cause? In short, may not a magnetic power exist throughout our system, perhaps through all systems, so that if men could make a voyage in the starry regions, a compass might be of use? And may not such universal magnetism, with its uniform direction, be serviceable in keeping the diurnal revolution of a planet more steady to the same axis? Lastly, as the poles of magnets may be changed by the presence of stronger magnets, might not, in ancient times, the near passing of some large comet, of greater magnetic power than this globe of ours, have been a means of changing its poles, and thereby wrecking and deranging its surface, placing in different regions the effect of centrifugal force, so as to raise the waters of the sea in some, while they were depressed in others? Let me add another question or two, not relating indeed to magnetism, but, however, to the theory of the earth.
Page 207
An intelligent whaleman of Nantucket informed me that three of their vessels, which were out in search of whales, happening to be becalmed, lay in sight of each other, at about a league distance, if I remember right, nearly forming a triangle: after some time, a water-spout appeared near the middle of the triangle, when a brisk breeze of wind sprung up, and every vessel made sail; and then it appeared to them all, by the setting of the sails and the course each vessel stood, that the spout was to the leeward of every one of them; and they all declared it to have been so when they happened afterward in company, and came to confer about it.
Page 211
If it happens at sea, the water under and between _a a a a_ and _b b b b_ will be violently agitated and driven about, and parts of it raised with the spiral current, and thrown about so as to form a bushlike appearance.
Page 231
By human industry and observation, other properties of other insects may possibly be hereafter discovered, and of equal utility.
Page 234
I had a little boat in form of a lighter.
Page 238
It must lie in water so deep as that you cannot reach it to take it up but by diving for it.
Page 239
4.