Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

scriptions for diminishing the stone, without perceiving any good effect. But observing temperance in eating, avoiding wine and cyder, and using daily the dumb bell, which exercises the upper part of the body without much moving the parts in contact with the stone, I think I have prevented its increase. As the roughness of the stone lacerates a little the neck of the bladder, I find that when the urine happens to be sharp, I have much pain in making water and frequent orgencies. For relief- under this circumstance, I take, going to bed, the bigness of a pigeon's egg of jelly of blackberries: the receipt for making it is enclosed... While I continue to do this every night I am generally easy the day following, making water pretty freely, and with long intervals. I wish most sincerely that this simple remedy may have the same happy effect with you. Perhaps currant jelly, or the jelly of apples, or of raspberries, may be equally serviceable; for I suspect the virtue of the jelly may lie principally in the boiled sugar which is in some degree candied by the boiling of the jelly. Wishing you for your own sake much more ease, and for the sake of mankind many more years, I remain with the greatest esteem and respect, dear sir, your most obedient and affectionate servant,

B. FRANKLIN.

To

Disorders in Holland— Projected conquest from Turkey. (EXTRACT.)

Philadelphia, Dec. 15, 1787. “ I hope the disorders in Brabant and Holland may be rectified without bloodshed. But I fear the impending war with the Turks, if not prevented by prudent negociation, may in its consequences involve great part of Europe. I confide however that France and England will préserve their present peace with each other, notwithstanding

some contrary appearances : for I think that they have both of them too much-sense to go to war without an important cause, as well as too little money at present. : ! 11.“ As to the projected conquest from Turkey, I apprehend that if the emperor and empress would make some use of arithmetic, and calculate what annual revenues may be expected from the country they want, should they acquire it, and then offer the grand signior a hundred times that annual revenue, to be paid down for an amicable purchase of it, it would be his interest to accept the offer, as well as theirs to make it, rather than a war for it should take place; since a war to acquire that territory and to retain it, will cost both parties much more, perhaps ten times more, than such sum of purchase money. But the hope of glory and the ambition of princes are not subject to arithmetical calculation. 2 My best wishes attend you ; being with great esteem, sir, your most obedient and most humble servant,

B. FRANKLIN. A

[ocr errors]

Relative to M. Saugrain-Dr. Franklin's Memoirs of his

own Life-New constitution proposed for the United

States— Imposts on trade-Paper money. MY DEAR FRIEND, Philadelphia, Feb. 17, 1788.

I received your kind letter of June 23, by M. Saugrain, and it is the last of yours that is come to my hands. As you have so much leisure, and love writing, I cannot think you have been so long silent; you who are so good as to love me, and who know how much pleasure your letters always afford me. I therefore rather suspect you may probably have written something too freely concerning public affairs, and that your letters may be arrested in your post

[ocr errors]

office, and yourself lodged in the Bastile. - Yoư see I 'imagine any thing, however extravagant, rather than suppose, (as your letters too often do) that my friends forget me.

I find M. Saugrain to answer well the good character you give of him, and shall with pleasure render him any services in my power. He is now gone down the Ohio, to reconnoitre that country. pins

I should have proceeded in the history you mention, if I could well have avoided accepting the chair of president for this third and last year: to which I was again elected by the unanimous voice of council and general assembly in November. If I live to see this year expire I may enjoy some leisure, which I promise you to employ in the work you do me the honor to urge so earnestly.

I sent you with my last a copy of the new constitution proposed for the United States by the late general convention. I sent one also to our excellent friend the Duke de la Rochefoucault. . I attended the business of the convention faithfully for four months. Enclosed you have the last speech I made in it. Six states have already adopted the constitution, and there is now little doubt of its being accepted by a sufficient number to carry it into execution, if not immediately by the whole. It has however met with great opposition in some states ; for we are at present a nation of politicians. And though there is a general dread of giving too much power to our governors, I think we are more in danger from too little obedience in the governed. *We shall, as you suppose, have imposts on trade, and

1

· The Memoirs of his own Life, to the continuance of which all his friends who knew the importance of such a history--wished him anxiously to apply.

See MBMOIRS OF His Life, Part V. p. 389. 4to ed.

2

custom-houses, not because other nations have them, but because we cannot at present do without them. We want to discharge our public debt occasioned by the late war. Direct taxes are not so easily levied on the scàntily settled inhabitants of our wide-extended country; and what is paid in the price of merchandise is less felt by the consumer, and less the cause of complaint. When we are out of debt we may leave our trade free, for our ordinary charges of government will not be great.

Where there is a free government, and the people make their own laws by their representatives, I see no injustice in their obliging one another to take their own paper money. It is no more so than compelling a man by law to take his own note. But it is unjust to pay strangers with such money against their will. The making of paper money with such a sanction is however a folly, since although you may by law oblige a citizens to take it for his goods, you cannot fix his prices; and his liberty of rating them as he pleases, which is the same thing as setting what value he pleases on your moins ney, defeats your sanction.'1,14

I have been concerned to hear of the troubles in the internal government of the country I love;? and hope some good may come out of them; and that they may end without miss chief. island

In your letter to my grandson you asked some questions, that had ay appearance as if you meditated a visit to us: Nothing in this world would give me greater pleasure than to receive and embrace here the whole family : but it is too great an happiness to be expected. This family all join with me in best wishes of every felicity to you and yours; and I

* France.

remain, with unalterable and great esteem and affection, my dear friend, yours most sincerely, B. FRANKLIN.

TO THE EDITORS OF THE PENNSYLVANIA GAZETTE,

On the abuse of the press. Messrs. Hall and SELLERS,

I lately heard a remark, that on examination of the Pennsyloania Gazette for fifty years, from its commencement, it appeared that during that long period scarce öne libellous piece had ever appeared in it. This generally chaste conduct of your paper is much to its reputation; for it has long been the opinion of sober judicious people, that nothing is more likely to endanger the liberty of the press, than the abuse of that liberty, by employing it in personal accusation, detraction, and calumny. The excesses some of our papers have been guilty of in this particular, have set this state in a bad light abroad, as appears by the following letter, which I wish you to publish, not merely to show your own disapprobation of the practice, but as a caution to others of the pro fession throughout the United States. For I have seen an European newspaper, in which the editor, who had been charged with frequently calumniating the Americans, justifies himself by saying, “ that he had published nothing disgraceful to us, which he had not taken from our own printed papers. I am, &c.

A. B. 1-1

DEAR FRIEND, New York, March 30, 1788.

My gout has at length left me, after five months' painful confinement. It afforded me however the leisure to read, or bear read, all the packets of your newspapers which you so kindly sent for my amusement,

« ZurückWeiter »