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THE

WORKS

DR. BENJAMIN FRANKLIN,

CONSISTING Of

ESSAYS,

K7MOUROUS, MORAL, AND MTERAkT.
WITH

HIS LIFE,
WRITTEN BY HIMSELF.

JOHN LOMAX, PUBLISHER.

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PREFACE

BY THE EDITOR.

AS hiograpby is a species of history which record the lives and characters of remarkable persons it consequently becomes an interestmg subject, and is of general utility. It would be but fair to assert, that abuost every civilized nation on the globe has, at one period or other, produced distinguished individuals m various stations of life.

Mr. Jefferson, the President of the United States of America, in his " Notes on Virginia," tbus speaks in answer to the assertion of the Abbe Raynal, mat "'America has not yet produced one good poet, one able mathematician, one ma'i of genius, in * single art, or a single science."—"When we shall hsve exististed as a nation," says Mi. J. "as long as the Greeks did before they produced a Homer, the Romans a Virgil, the French a Racine and Voltaire, the Englisn a Shakespeare and Milton, should this reproach be still true, we will inquire fom what unfriendly causes it has proceeded, tnat the other countries of Europe and quarters of the earth shall not have mscribed any name in the roll of poets. In war we nave produced a Washington, whose memory will be adoren whil liberty shall have votaries; whose name will trannph over lime, ami will in future ages assume its just station among the most celebrated worthies' of the world, when that wretrhed philosopby shall b* for gotten which would arrange him among the decene Facies of nature In physics, we have pmduced* KtAHEUN. thai, whom 'no one of the present a«e ha,

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nade more important discoveries nor has enriched philosophy with more, or more ingenious solutions of the phenomena of nature. We have supposed Mr. Rittcnhouse second to no astronomer living; that in genius he must be the first, because he is selftaught," Sic.

I n philosopby, England can boast of a Bacon tho most eminent professor in this science the world has ever produced. The Essays of this great writer a one of the liest proofs we can adduce of his trait scendent ahilities; and America claims the enlightened Fra-nktin, a man who has not left his equal behind him, and whose Life and Writings are the subject of the following sheets.

To say more in this place of our Author, would be anticipating what is hereafter mentioned: it will therefore only be necessary m add, that due attention has been paid in the selection of such of his productions as may be adapted to general perusal.

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