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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 286

no body's business wholly
into my own hands; and, out of zeal for the public good, design
to erect myself into a kind of censor morum; purposing, with your
allowance, to make use of the Weekly Mercury as a vehicle, in which
my remonstrances shall be conveyed to the world.

I am sensible I have, in this particular, undertaken a very
unthankful office, and expect little besides my labour for my pains.
Nay, it is probable, I may displease a great number of your readers,
who will not very well like to pay ten shillings a year for being
told of their faults. But as most people delight in censure, when
they themselves are not the objects of it, if any are offended at my
publicly exposing their private vices, I promise they shall have the
satisfaction, in a very little time, of seeing their good friends and
neighbours in the same circumstances.

However, let the fair sex be assured, that I shall always treat them
and their affairs with the utmost decency and respect. I intend now
and then to dedicate a chapter wholly to their service; and if my
lectures any way contribute to the embellishment of their minds, and
brightening of their understandings, without offending their modesty,
I doubt not of having their favour and encouragement.

It is certain, that no country in the world produces naturally finer
spirits than ours, men of genius for every kind of science, and
capable of acquiring to perfection every qualification, that is in
esteem among mankind. But as few here have the advantage of good
books, for want of which, good conversation is still more scarce,
it would, doubtless, have been very acceptable to your readers,
if, instead of an old out-of-date article from Muscovy or Hungary,
you had entertained them with some well chosen extract from a good
author. This I shall sometimes do, when I happen to have nothing
of my own to say that I think of more consequence. Sometimes, I
purpose to deliver lectures of morality of philosophy, and (because
I am naturally inclined to be meddling with things that do not
concern me) perhaps I may sometimes talk politics. And if I can by
any means furnish out a weekly entertainment for the public, that
will give a rational diversion, and at the same time be instructive
to the readers, I shall think my leisure hours well employed: and
if you publish this, I hereby invite all ingenious gentlemen and
others (that approve of such an undertaking) to my assistance and

It is like, by this time, you have a curiosity to be

Last Page Next Page

Text Comparison with Benjamin Franklin Representative selections, with introduction, bibliograpy, and notes

Page 50
In his preoccupation with the growth of manufactures and favorable balances of trade, Franklin gave no suggestions that at least by 1767 he was to become an exponent of agrarianism and free trade.
Page 63
"[i-291] It is ironic that this grievance should have enjoyed the sanction of one who, like Lord Chatham, was an empire builder, one who proudly wrote, "I am a Briton," and even during the time he sought to retrieve the Pennsylvania colonists' lost natural rights, entertained the ideas of a British imperialist.
Page 105
Smith could have received copies of Franklin's works through Hume and Lord Kames; among Franklin's works in Smith's library was _Observations Concerning the Increase of Mankind_; when Smith in the _Wealth of Nations_ observes that colonial population doubles in every twenty to twenty-five.
Page 163
My Grandfather had 4 Sons that grew up, viz Thomas, John, Benjamin and Josiah.
Page 201
I watch'd the Pay table on Saturday Night, and collected what I stood engag'd for them, having to pay some times near Thirty Shillings a Week on their Accounts.
Page 216
the hands of one who could also handle a Pen, thought it convenient to oblige and encourage me.
Page 229
Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.
Page 235
Page 249
* * * * * DOGOOD PAPERS, NO.
Page 250
I was not then capable of knowing, I shall never be able to forget; for as he, poor Man, stood upon the Deck rejoycing at my Birth, a merciless Wave entred the Ship, and in one Moment carry'd him beyond Reprieve.
Page 267
Indeed, to suppose any Thing to exist or be done, _contrary_ to the Will of the Almighty, is to suppose him not almighty; or that Something (the Cause of _Evil_) is more mighty than the Almighty; an Inconsistence that I think no One will defend: And to deny any Thing or Action, which he consents to the existence of, to be good, is entirely to destroy his two Attributes of _Wisdom_ and _Goodness_.
Page 349
as well as other History; but afterwards of great Use to them, whether they are Merchants, Handicrafts, or Divines; enabling the first the better to understand many Commodities, Drugs, &c; the second to improve his Trade or Handicraft by new Mixtures, Materials, &c.
Page 474
| 6 27 | 5 33 | | 15 | 2 | _settled_ | 6 29 | 5 31 | | 16 | 3 |Day 11 h.
Page 577
Nor for the following; that, after looking long through green spectacles, the white paper of a book will on first taking them off appear to have a blush of red; and, after long looking through red glasses, a greenish cast; this seems to intimate a relation between green and red not yet explained.
Page 634
" 15.
Page 684
Page 753
He was a great and good Man, and had the Merit of doing infinite Service to your Country by his Munificence to that Institution.
Page 765
" "Tell me then," said Albumazar,.
Page 780
Peter Templeman (1711-1769) was Secretary of the London Society of Arts, Manufactures, and Commerce and in 1762 corresponding member of the Royal Academy of Sciences at Paris (_Dictionary of National Biography_, LVI, 53-4).
Page 787
Ezra Stiles (1727-1795), member of the American Philosophical Society (1768), theologian and Newtonian scientist, President of Yale (1778-1795).