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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 246

and
that this is a harder nut to crack than they imagined.

We have not yet applied to any foreign power for assistance, nor
offered our commerce for their friendship. Perhaps we never may: yet
it is natural to think of it, if we are pressed.

We have now an army on the establishment which still holds yours
besieged.

My time was never more fully employed. In the morning at six, I am
at the committee of safety, appointed by the assembly to put the
province in a state of defence; which committee holds till near nine,
when I am at the congress, and that sits till after four in the
afternoon. Both these bodies proceed with the greatest unanimity,
and their meetings are well attended. It will scarce be credited in
Britain, that men can be as diligent with us from zeal for the public
good, as with you for thousands per annum. Such is the difference
between uncorrupted new states, and corrupted old ones.

Great frugality and great industry are now become fashionable here:
gentlemen, who used to entertain with two or three courses, pride
themselves now in treating with simple beef and pudding. By these
means, and the stoppage of our consumptive trade with Britain, we
shall be better able to pay our voluntary taxes for the support of
our troops. Our savings in the article of trade amount to near five
million sterling per annum.

I shall communicate your letter to Mr. Winthrop, but the camp is at
Cambridge, and he has as little leisure for philosophy as myself. * *
* Believe me ever, with sincere esteem, my dear friend,

Yours most affectionately.

FOOTNOTE:

[149] This and the two following letters were addressed to Dr.
Priestley, as appears by a letter from that gentleman to the editor
of the Monthly Magazine, which will be found in the appendix to the
present volume. _Editor._




_Account of the first Campaign made by the British Forces in
America[150]._


_Philadelphia, Oct. 3, 1775._

DEAR SIR,

I am to set out to-morrow for the camp[151], and having but just
heard of this opportunity, can only write a line to say that I am
well and hearty.--Tell our dear good friend * * *, who sometimes has
his doubts and despondencies about our firmness, that America is
determined and unanimous; a very few tories and place-men excepted,
who will probably soon export themselves.--Britain, at the expence
of three millions, has killed one hundred and fifty Yankies this
campaign, which is 20,000_l._ a head; and at Bunker's Hill she gained
a mile of ground, half of

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

Page 5
The family continued all of the Church of England till about the end of Charles the Second's reign, when some of the ministers that had been outed for nonconformity 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 9
By this means he turned our attention to what was good, just, and prudent in the conduct of life; and little or no notice was ever taken of what related to the victuals on the table, whether it was well or ill dressed, in or out of season, of good or bad flavor, preferable or inferior to this or that other thing of the kind, so that I was bro't up in such a perfect inattention to those matters as to be quite indifferent what kind of food was set before me, and so unobservant of it, that to this day if I am asked I can scarce tell a few hours after dinner what I dined upon.
Page 18
Our disputes were often brought before our father, and I fancy I was either generally in the right, or else a better pleader, because the judgment was generally in my favor.
Page 26
He being at Newcastle, forty miles below Philadelphia, heard there of me, and wrote me a letter mentioning the concern of my friends in Boston at my abrupt departure, assuring me of their good will to me, and that every thing would be accommodated to my mind if I would return, to which he exhorted me very earnestly.
Page 34
Keimer wore his beard at full length, because somewhere in the Mosaic law it is said, "Thou shalt not mar the corners of thy beard.
Page 53
In truth, he was an odd fish; ignorant of common life, fond of rudely opposing receiv'd opinions, slovenly to extream dirtiness, enthusiastic in some points of religion, and a little knavish withal.
Page 62
He went to Barbadoes, and there lived some years in very poor circumstances.
Page 64
I considered my giddiness and inconstancy when in London as in a great degree the cause of her unhappiness, tho' the mother was good enough to think the fault more her own than mine, as she had prevented our marrying before I went thither, and persuaded the other match in my absence.
Page 68
And why are weaker men to be deprived of such helps, when we see our race has been blundering on in the dark, almost without a guide in this particular, from the farthest trace of time? Show then, sir, how much is to be done, both to sons and fathers; and invite all wise men to become like yourself, and other men to become wise.
Page 71
When they think well of individuals in your native country, they will go nearer to thinking well of your country; and when your countrymen see themselves well thought of by Englishmen, they will go nearer to thinking well of England.
Page 84
My scheme of ORDER gave me the most trouble; and I found that, tho' it might be practicable where a man's business was such as to leave him the disposition of his time, that of a journeyman printer, for instance, it was not possible to be exactly observed by a master, who must mix with the world, and often receive people of business at their own hours.
Page 85
in other points of vice and virtue, have given up the struggle, and concluded that "a speckled ax was best"; for something, that pretended to be reason, was every now and then suggesting to me that such extream nicety as I exacted of myself might be a kind of foppery in morals, which, if it were known, would make me ridiculous; that a perfect character might be attended with the inconvenience of being envied and hated; and that a benevolent man should allow a few faults in himself, to keep his friends in countenance.
Page 103
I therefore, in 1743, drew up a proposal for establishing an academy; and at that time, thinking the Reverend Mr.
Page 104
My activity in these operations was agreeable to the governor and council; they took me into confidence, and I was consulted by them in every measure wherein their concurrence was thought useful to the association.
Page 107
But, if the demand was not directly from the crown, that phrase was found not so proper, and some other was to be invented.
Page 110
This I distributed among the principal inhabitants gratis; and as soon as I could suppose their minds a little prepared by the perusal of it, I set on foot a subscription for opening and supporting an academy; it was to be paid in quotas yearly for five years; by so dividing it, I judg'd the subscription might be larger, and I believe it was so, amounting to no less, if I remember right, than five thousand pounds.
Page 126
We found the general at Frederictown, waiting impatiently for the return of those he had sent thro' the back parts of Maryland and Virginia to collect waggons.
Page 138
The next morning our fort was plann'd and mark'd out, the circumference measuring four hundred and fifty-five feet, which would require as many palisades to be made of trees, one with another, of a foot diameter each.
Page 139
We met with no Indians, but we found the places on the neighboring hills where they had lain to watch our proceedings.
Page 162
1775 Returns to America; chosen a delegate to the Second Continental Congress; placed on the committee of secret correspondence; appointed one of the commissioners to secure the cooperation of Canada.