Vie de Franklin, écrite par lui-même - Tome I Suivie de ses œuvres morales, politiques et littéraires

By Benjamin Franklin

Page 2

Dont la plus grande partie n'avoit pas encore été publiée.

TRADUIT DE L'ANGLAIS, AVEC DES NOTES,

PAR J. CASTÉRA.

Eripuit coelo fulmen sceptrumque tyrannis.


TOME PREMIER.

* * * * *

À PARIS,
Chez F. BUISSON, Imp.-Lib. rue Hautefeuille, Nº. 20.

AN VI DE LA RÉPUBLIQUE.




PRÉFACE DU TRADUCTEUR.


Pendant les dernières années que Benjamin Franklin passa en France, on
parloit beaucoup, dans les Sociétés où il vivoit, des Confessions de
Jean-Jacques Rousseau, dont la première partie venoit de paroître. Cet
Ouvrage, dont on peut dire et tant de bien et tant de mal, et qui est
quelquefois si attrayant par les charmes et la sublimité du style,
quelquefois si rebutant par l'inconvenance des faits, engagea quelques
amis de Franklin à lui conseiller d'écrire aussi les Mémoires de sa Vie:
il y consentit.

Ces amis pensoient, avec raison, qu'il seroit curieux de comparer à
l'Histoire d'un Écrivain, qui semble ne s'être servi de sa brillante
imagination que pour se rendre malheureux, celle d'un Philosophe qui a
sans cesse employé toutes les ressources de son esprit à assurer son
bonheur, en contribuant à celui de l'humanité entière. Eh! en effet,
combien il est intéressant de considérer les chemins différens qu'ont
suivis ces deux hommes également nés dans

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Text Comparison with Experiments and Observations on Electricity Made at Philadelphia in America

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* * * * * * _LONDON_: Printed and sold by E.
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(This is best done by a vinegar cruet, or some such belly'd bottle).
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in your hand.
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Also by little wheels of the same matter, but formed like water wheels.
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These appearances we attempt to account for thus.
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He will continue this motion an hour or more in dry weather.
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12.
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With thin paste or gum-water, fix the border that is cut off on the inside of the glass, pressing it smooth and close; then fill up the vacancy by gilding the glass well with leaf gold or brass.
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--If a ring of persons take the shock among them, the experiment is called, _The Conspirators_.
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32.
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When a great number of clouds from the sea meet a number of clouds raised from the land, the electrical flashes appear to strike in different parts; and as the clouds are jostled and mixed by the winds, or brought near by the electrical attraction, they continue to give and receive flash after flash, till the electrical fire is equally diffused.
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7.
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Lightning melts metals, and I hinted in my paper on that subject, that I suspected it to be a cold fusion; I do not mean a fusion by force of cold, but a fusion without heat.
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We have since found, that one strong shock breaks the continuity of the gold in the filleting, and makes it look rather like dust of gold, abundance of its parts being broken and driven off; and it will seldom conduct above one strong shock.
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From the before mentioned law of electricity, that points, as they are more or less acute, draw on and throw off the electrical fluid with more or less power, and at greater or less distances, and in larger or smaller quantities in the same time, we may see how to account for the situation of the leaf of gold suspended between two plates, the upper one continually electrified, the under one in a person's hand standing on the floor.
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By the word _surface_, in this case, I do not mean mere length and breadth without thickness; but when I speak of the upper or under surface of a piece of glass, the outer or inner surface of the vial, I mean length, breadth, and half the thickness, and beg the favour of being so understood.
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But I suppose farther, that in the cooling of the glass, its texture becomes closest in the middle, and forms a kind of partition, in which the pores are so narrow, that the particles of the electrical fluid, which enter both surfaces at the same time, cannot go through, or pass and repass from one surface to the other, and so mix together; yet, though the particles of electrical fluid, imbibed by each surface, cannot themselves pass through to those of the other, their repellency can, and by this means they act on one another.
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And besides, when the globe is filled with cinnamon, or other non-electric, no electrical fluid can be obtain'd from its outer surface, for the reason before-mentioned.
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_Let_ A _and_ B _stand on wax_, &c.
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In the fore crescent the fire is passing out of the cushion into the glass; in the other it is leaving the glass, and returning into the back part of the cushion.