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To Dr. Lining.-On Cold produced by Evaporation
WRITINGS OF FRANKLIN.
HUMOROUS, MORAL, ECONOMICAL, AND POLITICAL.
THE WAY TO WEALTH, As clearly shown in the practice of an old Pennsylvania
Almanac, entitled, “ Poor Richard Improved."
COURTEOUS READER, I have heard that nothing gives an author so great pleasure as to find his works respectfully quoted by others. Judge, then, how much I must have been gratified by an incident I am going to relate to you. I stopped my horse lately where a great number of people were collected at an auction of merchants goods. The hour of the sale not being come, they were conversing on the badness of the times; and one of the company called to a plain, clean old man, with white locks,“ Pray, Father Abraham, what think you of the times? Will not these heavy taxes quite ruin the country? How shall we ever be able to pay them? What would you advise us to ?” Father Abraham stood up and replied, “ If you would have my advice, I will give it you in short; for A word to the wise is enough, as Poor Richard says." They joined in desiring him to speak his mind; and, gathering round him, he proceeded as follows:
Friends," said he, “the taxes are indeed very heavy, and if those laid on by the government were the only ones we had to pay, we might more
easily discharge them; but we have many others, and much more grievous to some of us.
We are taxed twice as much by our idleness, three times as much by our pride, and four times as much by our
and from these taxes the commissioners cannot ease or deliver us, by allowing an abatement. However, let us hearken to good advice, and something may be done for us : God helps them that help themselves, as Poor Richard says.
“I. It would be thought a hard government that should tax its people one tenth part of their time, to be employed in its service; but idleness taxes many of us much more; sloth, by bringing on diseases, absolutely shortens life. Sloth, like rust, consumes faster than labour wears ; while the
used key is always bright, as Poor Richard says. But dost thou love life, then do not squander time, for that is the stuff life is made of, as Poor Richard says. How much more than is necessary do we spend in sleep? forgetting that The sleeping for catches no pouliry, and that There will be sleeping enough in the grave, as Poor Richard says.
“ If time be of all things the most precious, wasting time must be, as Poor Richard says, the greatest prodigality; since, as he elsewhere tells us, Lost time is never found again; and what we call time enough, always proves little enough. Let us, then, up and be doing, and doing to the purpose ; so by diligence shall we do more with less perplexity. Sloth makes all things difficult, but industry all easy; and He that riseth late must trot all day, and shall scarce overtake his business at right; while Laziness travels so slowly, that Poverty soon orertakes him. Drive thy business, let not that drive thee; and Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise, as Poor Richard says.
“So what signifies wishing and hoping for better times? We may make these times better if we bestir ourselves. Industry need not wish, and he that