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or THE

LIFE AND WRITINGS

OF

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN,

LL.D. F.R.S. Ac.

MIN1STF.R PLENIPOTENTIARY FROM THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
AT THE COURT OF FRANCE, AND FOR THE TREATY OF PEACE
AND INDEPENDENCE WITH GREAT BRITAIN, ice. &c.

WRITTEN BY HIMSELF TO A LATE PERIOD,

AND CONTINUED TO THE TIME OF HIS DEATH

BY HIS GRANDSON,

WILLIAM TEMPLE FRANKLIN.

COMPRISING THE

PRIVATE CORRESPONDENCE

Ztttt public $egoctatton0 of 3)r. jFranklfn,

AND HIS SELECT

POLITICAL, PHILOSOPHICAL, AND MISCELLANEOUS WORKS.
PUBLISHED FROM THE ORIGINAL 1HSS.

THIRD EDITION.

VOL. V.

POSTHUMOUS AND OTHER WRITINGS.

LONDON:

PRINTED FOR HENRY COLBURN, CONDUIT STREET.

1819.

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London:

Printed by A. J. Valpy, Tooke's Court, Chancery LanePREFACE

TO

THE SECOND EDITION

<

or TBS

POSTHUMOUS AND OTHER WRITINGS.

With the present Volumes the Editor conceives that he has completely redeemed his pledge to the Public, and faithfully discharged his trust as the conservator of Dr. Franklin's literary remains.

It is a common complaint that the reputation of men of eminence in the world of letters suffers by their posthumous works; nothing however of that kind is to be apprehended in regard to the present collection, for many of the fugitive Essays here assembled, and the

original Pieces now for the first time brought to public view, are directly referred to in the preceding Memoirs and Correspondence as elucidatory of particular transactions, or as documents of authority for the confirmation of the truth of what is there asserted.

But independently of a consideration which is sufficient to free these supplementary Volumes from the charge of being supererogatory, the several tractates which make up their contents have all a paramount claim to preservation in their present form, on account of their intrinsic merits and relative importance, as connected with the personal history, character, and pursuits, of a man who never adopted any theory but with a view to practical experience, and who, in the true spirit of philosophy, applied all his speculations to objects of general utility.

It would, therefore, have been an act of culpable negligence, to have left even the lightest productions of such a mind to float down the stream of time, subject to all its

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