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THE

, WORKS

op DR. BENJAMIN FRANKLIN,

CONSISTING OF

ESSAYS,

HDMODRODS, MORAL, AND LITERABT.
WITH

HIS

WRITTEN fif HIMSELF.

NEW-YORK.
MAHLON DAT,

171 Full BOM.

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PREFACE

BY THE EDITOR.

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

Mr. Jefferson, tho P/e^ident of the United States of America, in his ";Notes mv Virginia?' flias speaks in answer to the assirt'on'of llieVlbbe °RaynEl,;tn.'av "America has not yet produced rme gofid '|Aiet,' o*8

did before they produced ,a; Homer, Uie Rpruan* a Virgil, the French a Raf ine;aw^\!oiTaire< ihi; Kh'.i,li,ii a Shakespeare aml Mi'.ton; ehoiSd.tfiis re^nailh be still true, we will inquire fom what unfriendly causes it lias proceeded, that the other countries of Kurope and quarters of the earth shall not have inscribed any name in the roll of poets. In war we nave produced a Washington, whose memory will be adorea whil liberty shall have votaries; whose name will triuml<i over time, and will in future a»es assume its just station among the most celebrated A'orthies of tha world, when that wretched philosophy shall be for gotten which would arrange him among the degene racies of nature. In physics, we have produced a Frakklix, than whom no one of the present age has made more important discoveries, nor has enriched pniinsophy with more, or more ingenious solutions of the phenomena of nature. We have supposed Mr. Rittcnhouse second to no astronomer living; that in .si-nius he must be the first, because he is selftaught," &c.

I n philosophy, England can boast of a Bacon the most eminent professor in this science the world hag ever produced. The Essays of this great writer if one of the best proofs we can adduce of his tran scendent abilities; and America claims the enlightened Franklm, a man who has not left his equal bohind 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 to add, that due attention has been paid in the selection of such of his pro ductious as may be adapted to general perusal.

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