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15. One of them called out to a plain, clean old man, with white locks, "Pray, father Abraham, what think ye of the times? Won't these heavy taxes quite ruin the country? How shall we be ever able to pay them? What would you advise us to do?" Father Abraham stood up, and replied, "If you'd have my advice, I'll give it to you in short; for a word to the wise is enough; and many words won't fill a bushel,' as Poor Richard says."
16. The old man then went on to advise them to be industrious and economical; and, in the course of his advice, repeated all of the wise sayings of Poor Richard. In this manner they were all collected into a single paper, called The Way to Wealth. This piece was very much approved, copied into all the American newspapers, reprinted in Great Britain, and translated into the French language. Large numbers of it were, in this manner, distributed, and undoubtedly did a good deal of service.
16. How was The Way to Wealth approved?
Management of his Newspaper. Study of the Languages. Chess-playing. The Preacher Hemphill. Stealing Sermons. Visit to Boston. Visits his Brother James at Newport. Usefulness of the Junto. Formation of new Clubs. Franklin chosen Clerk of the General Assembly. Anecdote.
1. BESIDES his almanac, Franklin considered his newspaper as a very valuable means of circulating instruction and good advice among the people. For this purpose he frequently reprinted in it extracts from the Spectator, a work written a good many years ago, by several distinguished English authors. It is a collection of pieces on moral and popular subjects, in a very pleasant style, and first published in single numbers of a few pages each.
2. In conducting his paper, Franklin was very careful to avoid all abuse of particular persons. Whenever he was requested to publish any thing of the kind, his answer was, that he would print th piece by itself, and give the author as many copie for his own use as he desired. He very wisely con sidered that his subscribers expected him to furnish them with useful and entertaining pieces, and not
1. How did he make his newspaper serviceable in circulatin; instruction? 2. What was he very careful to avoid?
with abuse and violent discussions about things with which they had nothing to do.
3. In 1733, Franklin sent one of his apprentices to Charleston, South Carolina, where a printer was wanted. He furnished him with a press and types, and was to receive one third of the profits of the business. After the death of this man, who was very irregular in settling his affairs with Franklin, the business was continued by his widow. This woman had been born and educated in Holland, where females were taught a knowledge of accounts. She managed the establishment with a great deal of prudence and success, and was in time able to purchase the printing office, and establish her son in it.
4. In 1733, Franklin began the study of foreign languages. He soon obtained such a knowledge of the French, as to read books in that language with perfect ease. After this he undertook the Italian. An acquaintance, who was also learning it, often tempted him to play chess. Finding this took up too much time, Franklin refused to play any more, except upon one condition. This was, that whichever of them should beat, should have a right to impose a task upon the other; either of part of the grammar to be got by heart, or in translations.
3. Describe the conduct of the woman whose husband Franklin had established in business. 4. When did Franklin begin the study of foreign languages? What languages did he study? Relate the anecdote about chess-playing.
5. These tasks they were bound in honor to perform before the next meeting. The two friends played with about equal skill and success, and in this way soon beat each other into a pretty good knowledge of the Italian. Franklin next undertook Spanish, and learned enough to read books in that language with considerable ease.
6. About the year 1734, a young preacher arrived in Philadelphia, by the name of Hemphill. He had a good voice, and delivered very excellent sermons. Large numbers were attracted by his eloquence, of different doctrines and belief. Among the rest, Franklin became a very constant hearer. He was pleased with his sermons, because they impressed the love and the practice of virtue and goodness, without quarrelling about hard questions of doctrinal religion.
7. Some of the congregation, however, disapproved of his preaching, and united with the old ministers to attempt to put him down. Franklin took sides with him very warmly, and did all he could to raise a party in his favor. He wrote two or three pamphlets in his defence.
8. During this contest the unlucky preacher hurt his own cause by a very unpardonable meanness. One of his enemies heard him preach a very eloquent sermon, and thought he had somewhere heard or read parts of it before. On looking into the mat
6. Who was Hemphill? 7. What did Frankl behalf? 8. How did the preacher ruin his own cɛ A
ter, he found the preacher had stolen several passages from a discourse delivered by a celebrated English divine. This discovery induced many of his friends to desert him, and he was obliged to go in search of a congregation less inquisitive.
9. After ten years' absence from Boston, Franklin determined to make a journey there to visit his relations. He was now doing very good business, and was in quite easy circumstances. He had scen a good many changes in his fortunes, since he first ran away from his native place; and his industry and good sense were to bring about still greater changes.
10. In returning to Philadelphia, he stopped at Newport, to see his brother James, who was, at that time, settled there with his printing office. Their former differences were at once forgotten, and the meeting was very cordial and affectionate. James was at that time in very ill health, and in expectation of a speedy death. He, accordingly, requested Benjamin, when that event should happen, to take home his son, then but ten years of age, and bring him up to the printing business.
11. This he accordingly performed, sending him a few years to school before he took him into the office. When James died, his widow carried on
G. How long had Franklin been absent from Boston when he determined to revisit it? 10. How was the interview between the brothers at Newport? What request did James make respecting his son? 11. How did Franklin comply with this request?