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standing. When any point occurs, in which you would be glad to have farther information than your book affords you, I beg you would not in the least apprehend, that 1 should think it a trouble to receive and answer your questions. It will be a pleasure, and no trouble. For though I may not be able, out of my own little stock of knowledge, to afford you what you require, I can easily direct you to the books where it may most readily be found. Adieu, and believe me ever, my dear friend,

Yours affectionately, B.franklin.

To John Baskerville.' {The Printer.)

Dear Sir, Craven Street, London, 1760.

Let me give you a pleasant instance of the prejudice some have entertained against your work. Soon after I returned, discoursing with a gentleman concerning the artists of Birmingham, he said you would be a means of blindiug all the readers in the nation; for the strokes of your letters being too thin and narrow, hurt the eye, and he could never read a line of them without pain. I thought, said I, you

1 John Baskerville, the celebrated type-founder and printer, was bom in 1706, at Wolverley, in the county of Worcester. Having a small estate of about sixty pounds a-y car, he was not bred to any profession; but in 1736 he became a schoolmaster at Birmingham, which be continued many years. Afterwards he entered upon the japanning business, which succeeded so well as to enable him to purchase a country-house and set up his carriage; each pannel of which was a distinct picture, and the whole might be considered as a pattern-card of his trade. In 1750 he began business as a type-founder, on which l;e spent many hundreds before he could produce a letter to please himself. By perseverance he overcame all obstacles, and in 1756 published an edition of Virgil in quarto, which was followed by Paradise Lost, the Bible, Common Prayer, and several other works. In

were going to complain of-the gloss of the paper, some object to. . "-Noyno," said he, " I have heard that mentioned,'but it is hot that; it is m the form and cut of the letters themselves: they have not that height and thickness of the stroke, which makes the common printing so much the more comfortable to the eye."—You see this gentleman was a connoisseur. In vain 1 tudeavored to. support your character against the charge: he knew what he felt, and could see the reason of it, and several other gentlemen among his friends had made the same observation, Sic. Yesterday he called to visit me, when, mischievously bent to try his judgment, I stepped into my closet, tore off the top of Mr. Caslon's i specimen, and produced it to him as yours, brought with me from Birmingham, saying I had been examining it since he spoke to me, and could not for my life perceive the disproportion he mentioned, desiring him to point it out to me. He readily undertook it, and went oyer the several founts, showing me everywhere what he thought instances of that disproportion; and declared, that he could not then. i end the specimen without feeling very strongly the pain he had mentioned to me. 1 spared him that time, the confusion of being told, that these were the types he had been reading all his fife with so muc h ease to his eyes; the types his adored Newton is printed with, on which he has pored not a little; nay, the very types his own book is printed with; (for he is

1765 be applied to Dr. Franklin, then at Paris, to sound the literati there respecting the purchase of hls,types, but the proposal was not accepted. They were many years after purchased by the celebrated M; De BeamiiarchaisV and'employed in the printing his edition of the work-- of Voltaire. Baskerville died at Birmingham, in. 177S; and as lie had an avcrsiun to church-yards, he was by his own direction buried in a mausoleum erected on his own grounds.

1 An eminent type-engraver and letter-founder in London.

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To John Alleyne, Esq. ~<

On early Marriages.

Sear Jack, ,. Craven Street, August 9, 1768.

You desire, you say, my impartial thoughts on the subject of an early marriage, by way of answer to the numberless objections that have been made by numerous persons to your own. You may remember, when you consulted me on the occasion, that I thought youth on both sides to be no objection. Indeed, from the marriages that have fallen under my observation, I am rather inclined to think, that early ones stand the best chance of happiness. The temper and habits of the young are not yet become so stiff and uncomplying, as when more advanced in life: they form more easily to each other, and hence many occasions of disgust are removed. And if youth has less of that prudence which is necessary to manage a family, yet the parents and elder friends of young married persons are generally at hand to afford their advice, which amply supplies that defect; and by early marriage, youth is sooner formed to regular and useful life; and possibly some of those accidents or connexions, that might have injured thcconstitution, or reputation, or both, are thereby happily prevented. Particular circumstances of particular persons, may possibly sometimes make it prudent to delay entering into that state; but in general, when nature has rendered our bodies fit for it, the presumption is in nature^ favor, that she has not judged amiss in making us desire it. Late marriages are often attended, too, with this further incon vcnicncc, that there is not the same chance that the parents shall live to see their offspring educated. "Late children" says the Spanish proverb, "are early orphans." A melancholy reflection to those whose case it may be. With us in America, marriages are generally in the morning of life; our children are therefore educated and settled in the world by noon; and thus, our business being done, we have an afternoon and evening of cheerful leisure to ourselves; such as our friend at present enjoys. By these early marriages we are blessed with more children; and from the mode among us, founded by nature, of every mother suckling and nursing her own child, more of them are raised. Thence the swift progress of population among us,- unparalleled in Europe. In fine, I am glad you are married, and congratulate you most cordially upon it. You are now in the way of becoming a useful citizen; and you have escaped the unnatural state of celibacy for life—the fate of many here, who never intended it, .but who having too long postponed the change of their condition, find, at length, that it is too late to think of it, and so live all their lives in a situation that greatly lessens a man's value. An odd volume of a set of books bears not the value of its proportion to the set: what think you of the odd half of a pair of scissars? it can't well cut any thing; it may possibly serve to scrape a trencher. •• •. •"-••

Pray make my compliments and best wishes acceptable to your bride. I am old and heavy, or I should ere this have presented them in person. I shall make but small use of the "old man's privilege, that of giving advice to younger friends. Treat your wife always with respect; it will procure respect to you, not only from her, but from all that observe it. Never use a slighting expression to her, even in jest; for slights in jest, after frequent bandyings, are apt to end in angry earnest. Be studious in your profession, and you will be learned* Be industrious and frugal, and you will be rich. Be sober and

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temperate, and you will be healthy. Be in general virtuous, and you will be happy. At least you will, by such conduct, stand the best chance for such consequences. i pray God to bless you both; being ever your affectionate friend,

B. Fbanklih.

To Michael Collinson, Esq.

Respecting Mr. Peter Collinson.

DjiAR Sir, £no date.■] {supposed to be in 1768 or 17f■9.) Understanding that an account of our dear departed friend/ Mr. Peter Collinson, 1 is intended to be given to the public, I cannot omit expressing my approbation of the design. The characters of good men are exemplary, and often stimulate the well-disposed to an imitation, beneficial to mankind, and honorable to themselves. And as you may be unacquainted with the following instances of his zeal and usefulness in promoting knowledge, which fell within my observation, I take the liberty of informing you, that in 1730, a

1 Peter Collinson, F.R.S., a very celebrated botanist, was descended from a family of ancient standing in the county of Westmoreland, but born himself in 1693, in Clement's Lane, Lombard Street. His parents realised a handsome fortune by trade in Gracechurch Street, the bulk of which coming to Peter, who was the eldest son, he was enabled to follow his favorite pursuit of natural history. He had one of the finest gardens in England, at Peckham, in Surry, whence he removed in 1749 to Mill Hill, in the parish of Hendon in Middlesex, where he died in 1768. Mr. Collinson kept up a correspondence with men of science in all parts of the world, and he sent the first electrical machine that was ever seen in America, as a present to the Philosophical Society at Philadelphia. He was also a liberal contributor to the public library of that city; and an intimate friend of Dr. Franklin, who received from him many hints and papers on the subject of elesiricity.

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