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one day, a day of violent storm, in which I was glad you were not with us. I had the happiness of finding my family well, and of being very kindly received by my country folks.
I say nothing to persuade your coming, because I said in a former letter, I would leave you entirely to your own judgment, which is very good. I would only mention the fact, that, on inquiry I am informed the usual apprentice-fee to a mercantile house of eminence, is from one hundred to one hundred and fifty pounds sterling. I am plunged again into public business, as deep as ever; and can now only add my love to the dear children, in which this family all join. Temple is just gone to look at his lands, and Ben is at college to complete his studies. I am ever, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,
FROM RICHARD PRICE TO B. FRANKLIN.
Newington Green, 5 November, 1785. DEAR FRIEND, I heard a few days ago with particular pleasure of your safe arrival at Philadelphia, and of the joy with which you were received there. We had been alarmed here by accounts in the public papers of your being taken by an Algerine pirate, and carried into slavery. I was so foolish as to believe this account, when I first read it; but a little inquiry and consideration soon convinced me, that the distress it gave me was groundless. May you still live to be happy in the respect and gratitude of your country, and to bless it by your counsel. It was a mortification to me, that I could not make one of the friends, who had the pleasure of being with you at Southampton. I return you many thanks for the kind lines you sent me from thence. They gave me great pleasure.
I received some time ago from Mr. Vaughan a diploma, constituting me a member of the Philosophical Society at Philadelphia. Will you be so good as to convey to the President and other members of the Society, in whatever manner you may think proper, my very grateful acknowledgments? I cannot but be impressed by the honors they have done me, and I hope they will accept my wishes of their increasing credit and prosperity, to which, were it in my power, I should be glad to contribute.
I am sorry for the hostile aspect of affairs between this country and yours. The general cry during the war was, that the colonies were too important to be given up, and that our essential interests depended on keeping them. It seems now to be discovered among us, that they are of no use to us; and the issue may be, that we shall lose the trade and friendship of an increasing world, and throw it into the scale of France. Our restraints, however, will do good to the United States, should their effect be to oblige them to strengthen their federal government, to check their xage for trade, and to render them more independent, by causing them to find all they want within themselves.
Should you happen to see Mr. Vaughan, or any of his family, deliver my kind compliments to them. With every respectful sentiment, and the most affectionate regard, I am ever yours,
TO JOHN BARD AND MRS. BARD.
Philadelphia, 14 November, 1785. DEAR FRIENDS I received your kind letter, which gave me great pleasure, as it informed me of your weifare. Your friendly congratulations are very obliging. I had on my return some right, as you observe, to expect repose ; and it was my intention to avoid all public business. But I had not firmness enough to resist the unanimous desire of my country folks; and I find myself harnessed again in their service for another year. They engrossed the prime of my life. They have eaten my flesh, and seem resolved now to pick my bones. You are right in supposing, that I interest myself in every thing that affects you and yours, sympathizing in your afflictions, and rejoicing in your felicities; for our friendship is ancient, and was never obscured by the least cloud.
I thank you for your civilities to my grandson, and am ever, with sincere and great esteem and regard, my dear friends, yours most affectionately,
TO MATHON DE LA COUR.
Philadelphia, 18 November, 1785. SIR, I received duly the letter you did me the honor of writing to me on the 25th of June past, together with the collection you have made des comptes rendus de vos contrôleurs généraux ; and your Discours sur les Moyens d'encourager le Patriotisme dans les Monarchies. The first is a valuable work, as containing a great deal of useful information ; but the second I am particular
ly charmed with, the sentiments being delightfully just, and expressed with such force and clearness, that I am persuaded the pamphlet, though small, must have a great effect on the minds of both princes and people, and thence be productive of much good to mankind. Be pleased to accept my hearty thanks for both.
It is right to be sowing good seed whenever we have an opportunity, since some of it may be productive. An instance of this you should be acquainted with, as it may afford you pleasure. The reading of Fortuné Ricard's Testament, has put it into the head and heart of a citizen to leave two thousand pounds sterling to two American cities, who are to lend it in small sums at five per cent to young beginners in business; and the accumulation, after a hundred years, to be laid out in public works of benefit to those cities.* With great esteem, I have the honor to be, Sir, &c.
TO EDWARD BANCROFT.
Proposed new Edition of Dr. Franklin's Writings.
Philadelphia, 26 November, 1785. DEAR SIR, I received your kind letter of September 5th, informing me of the intention Mr. Dilly has of printing a new edition of my writings, and of his desire, that I would furnish him with such additions as I may think proper. At present all my papers and manuscripts are so mixed with other things, by the confusions occasioned in sudden and various removals during the late troubles, that I can hardly find any thing. But, having nearly finished an addition to my house, which will af
• See Dr. Franklin's Will.
ford me room to put all in order, I hope soon to be able to comply with such a request; but I hope Mr. Dilly will have a good understanding in the affair with Henry and Johnson, who, having risked the former impressions, may suppose they thereby acquired some right in the copy. As to the Life proposed to be written, if it be by the same hand who furnished a sketch to Dr. Lettsom, which he sent me, I am afraid it will be found too full of errors for either you or me to correct; and, having been persuaded by my friends, Messrs. Vaughan and M. Le Veillard, Mr. James of this place, and some others, that such a Life, written by myself, may be useful to the rising generation, I have made some progress in it, and hope to finish it this winter; so I cannot but wish that project of Mr. Dilly's biographer may be laid aside. I am nevertheless thankful to you for your friendly offer of correcting it.
As to public affairs, it is long since I gave over all expectations of a commercial treaty between us and Britain ; and I think we can do as well, or better, without one than she can. Our harvests are plenty, our produce fetches a high price in hard money, and there are in every part of our country incontestable marks of public felicity. We discover, indeed, some errors in our general and particular constitutions; which it is no wonder they should have, the time in which they were formed being considered. But these we shall soon mend. The little disorders you have heard of in some of the States, raised by a few wrong heads, are subsiding, and will probably soon be extinguished. My best wishes, and those of my family, attend you. We shall be happy to see you here, when it suits you to visit us; being with sincere and great esteem, my dear friend, yours most affectionately,
B. FRANKLIN. VOL. X.