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

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 301

a real person, I had sufficiently
manifested my impartiality, when I said, in that very paragraph,
that Cretico is not without virtue; that there are many good things
in him, and many good actions reported of him; which must be allowed
in all reason, very much to overbalance in his favour those worst
words, sour tempered, and cunning. Nay, my very enemy and accuser
must have been sensible of this, when he freely acknowledges, that he
has been seriously considering, and cannot yet determine, which he
would choose to be, the Cato or Cretico of that paper; since my Cato
is one of the best of characters. Thus much in my own vindication. As
to the only reasons there given, why I ought not to continue drawing
characters, viz. Why should any man's picture be published which he
never sat for; or his good name taken from him any more than his
money or possessions, at the arbitrary will of another, &c. I have
but this to answer: the money or possessions, I presume, are nothing
to the purpose; since no man can claim a right either to those or a
good name, if he has acted so as to forfeit them. And are not the
public the only judges what share of reputation they think proper
to allow any man? Supposing I was capable, and had an inclination,
to draw all the good and bad characters in America, why should a
good man be offended with me for drawing good characters? And if I
draw ill ones, can they fit any but those that deserve them? And
ought any but such to be concerned that they have their deserts? I
have as great an aversion and abhorrence for defamation and scandal
as any man, and would, with the utmost care, avoid being guilty of
such base things: besides I am very sensible and certain, that if I
should make use of this paper to defame any person, my reputation
would be sooner hurt by it than his; and the Busy-Body would quickly
become detestable; because, in such a case, as is justly observed,
the pleasure arising from a tale of wit and novelty soon dies away
in generous and honest minds, and is followed with a secret grief,
to see their neighbours calumniated. But if I myself was actually
the worst man in the province, and any one should draw my true
character, would it not be ridiculous in me to say, he had defamed
and scandalized me, unless he had added in a matter of truth? If any
thing is meant by asking,

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Text Comparison with Benjamin Franklin and the First Balloons

Page 0
Smyth, the editor of the last and most complete edition of Franklin's Works,[1] who made careful search for the original documents.
Page 1
view of the historic and scientific interest of these letters, they are now printed exactly according to the press-copies.
Page 2
Since writing the above, I am favour'd with your kind Letter of the 25th.
Page 3
The great one of M.
Page 4
It has been even fancied that in time People will keep such Globes anchored in the Air, to which by Pullies they may draw up Game to be preserved in the Cool & Water to be frozen when Ice is wanted.
Page 5
a tree, and was torn in getting it down; so that it cannot be ascertained whether it burst when above, or not, tho' that is supposed.
Page 6
_Planant sur l'Horizon.
Page 7
conveying Intelligence into, or out of a besieged Town, giving Signals to distant Places, or the like.
Page 8
In this Country we are not so much afraid of being laught at.
Page 9
Charles & Robert's Experiment, which was to have been made at this Day, and at which I intended to be present.
Page 10
Several Bags of Sand were taken on board before the Cord that held it down was cut, and the whole Weight being then too much to be lifted, such a Quantity was discharg'd as to permit its Rising slowly.
Page 11
Tuesday Morning, Dec.
Page 12
2^d, which contains calculations in French relating to the balloon.
Page 13
However, other changes were introduced in the _Proces-Verbal_ when reprinted in the second volume of M.
Page 14
10, "chearfully" is possibly an older spelling for "cheerfully"; p.