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the Moral Algebra, ne might form a better judgment than any other person can form for him. But, since my opinion seems to be desired, I give it for continuing to the end of the term, under all the present disagreeable circumstances: the connexion will then die a natural death. No reason will be expected to be given for the separation, and, of course, no offence taken at reasons given; the friendship may still subsist, and, in some other way, be useful. The time diminishes daily, and is usefully cmployed. All human situations have their inconveniences; we feel those that we find in the present, and we neither feel nor see those that exist in another. Hence we make frequent and troublesome changes without amendment, and often for the worse. In my youth, I was passenger in a little sloop descending the river Delaware. There being no wind, we were obliged, when the ebb was spent, to cast anchor and wait for the next. The heat of the sun on the vessel was excessive, the company strangers to me, and not very agreeable. Near the river-side I saw what I took to be a pleasant green meadow, in the middle of which was a large shady tree, where it struck my fancy I could sit and read (having a book in my pocket), and pass the time agreeably till the tide turned; I therefore prevailed with the captain to put me ashore. Being landed, I found the greatest part of my meadow was really a marsh, in crossing which, to come at my tree, I was up to my knees in mire; and I had not placed myself under its shade five minutes before the moschetoes in swarms found me out, attacked my legs, hands, and face, and made my reading and my rest impossible; so that I returned to the beach, and called for the boat to come and take me on board again, where I was obliged to bear the heat I had strove to quit, and also the laugh of the company. Similar cases in the affairs of life have since frequently fallen under my observation.

“I have had thoughts of a college for him in America ; I know no one who might be more usesul to the public in the institution of youth. But there are possible unpleasantnesses in that situation: it cannot be obtained but by a too hazardous voyage at this time for a family : and the time for experiments would be all otherwise engaged.

“ B. FRANKLIN.”

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" To General Washington.

“ Passy, March 5, 1780

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" I received but lately the letter your excellency did me the honour of writing to me in recommendation of the Marquis de Lafayette. His modesty detained it long in his own hands. We became acquainted, however, from the time of his arrival at Paris; and his zeal for the honour of our country, his activity in our affairs here, and his firm attach ment to our cause and to you, impressed me with the same regard and esteem for him that your excellency's letter would have done had it been im. mediately delivered to me.

“Should peace arrive after another campaign or two, and afford us a little leisure, I should be happy to see your excellency in Europe, and to accompany you, if my age and strength would permit, in visiting some of its most ancient and famous kingdoms. You would, on this side the sea, enjoy the great reputalion you have acquired, pure and free from those litile shades that the jealousy and envy of a man's countrymen and contemporaries are ever endeavouring to cast over living merit. Here you would know and enjoy what posterity will say of Washington. For a thousand leagues have nearly the same effect with a thousand years. The feeble voice of those grovelling passions cannot extend so far either in time or distance. At present I enjoy that pleasure for you, as I frequently hear the old generals of this martial country (who study the maps of America, and mark upon them all your operations) speak with sincere approbation and great applause of your conduct, and join in giving you the character of one of the greatest captains of the age.

“I must soon quit the scene, but you may live to see our country flourish, as it will amazingly and rapidly after the war is over. Like a field of young Indian corn, which long fair weather and sunshine had enfeebled and discoloured, and which in that weak state, by a thunder-gust of violent wind, hail, and rain, seemed to be threatened with absolute destruction; yet the storm being past, it recovers fresh verdure, shoots up with double vigour, and delights the eye not of its owner only, but of every observing traveller.

“ The best wishes that can be formed for your health, honour, and happiness, ever_attend you, from yours, &c.,

B. FRANKLIN.

66

TO M. Court de Gebelin, * Paris.

“ Passy, May 7, 1781. “ DEAR SIR, "I am glad the little bookt proved acceptable. It does not appear to me intended for a grammar to teach the language. It is rather what we call in English a spelling-book, in which the only method observed is to arrange the words according to their number of syllables, placing those of one syllable together, and those of two syllables, and so on. And it is to be observed that Sa ki ma, for instance, is not three words, but one word of three syllables ; and the reason that hyphens are not placed between the syllables is, that the printer had not enough of them.

“As the Indians had no letters, they had no orthog. raphy. The Delaware language being differently spelt from the Virginian, may not always arise from a difference in the languages; for strangers who learn the language of an Indian nation, finding no orthography, are at liberty, in writing the language, to use such compositions of letters as they think will best produce the sounds of the words. I have observed that our Europeans of different nations, who learn the same Indian language, form each his own orthography according to the usual sounds given to the letters in his own language. Thus the same words of the Mohock language written by an English, a French, and a German interpreter, often differ very much in the spelling ; and without knowing the usual powers of the letters in the language of the interpreter, one cannot come at the pronunciation of the Indian words. The spelling-book in question was, I think, written by a German.

* Antoine Court de Gebelin, born at Nismes in 1725, became a minister of a Protestant communion in the Cevennes, then at Lausanne: he quitted the clerical function for literature, at Par. is, where he acquired so great a reputation as an antiquary and hilosopher that he was appointed to attend one of the museums, His reputation suffered by his zeal in favour of animal magnetism. He died at Paris, May 13, 1784. His great work is entitled, “ Monde Primitif, analysé et compare avec le Monde Moderne,” 9 tom. 4to. The excellence of his character may be appreciated from the fact, that, on quitting Switzerland, he voluntarily gave to his sister the principal part of his patrimony, reserving but little for himself, and relying for a maintenance upon the exercise of his talents.

† A Vocabulary of the Language of one of the Indian Tribes in North America,

“. You mention a Virginian Bible. Is it not the Bible of the Massachusetts language, translated by Elliot, and printed in New-England about the middle of the last century? I know this Bible, but have never heard of one in the Virginian language. Your observation of the similitude between many of the words and those of the ancient world, are indeed very curious.

“This inscription, which you find to be Phænician, is, I think, near Taunton (not Jannston, as you write it). There is some account of it in the old Philo. sophical Transactions; I have never been at the place, but shall be glad to see your remarks on it.

“The compass appears to have been long known in China before it was known in Europe ; unless we suppose it kuown to Homer, who makes the prince that lent ships to Ulysses boast that they had a spirit in them, by whose directions they could find their way in a cloudy day or the darkest night. If any Phænicians arrived in America, I should rather think it was not by the accident of a storm, but in the course of their long and adventurous voyages; and that they coasted from Denmark and Norway, over to Greenland, and down southward by Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, &c., to New-England, as the Danes themselves certainly did some ages before Columbus.

“Our new American society will be happy in the correspondence you mention; and when it is pos

VOL. II.-14

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