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.for which so much is risked, so much is suffered ? It cannot promote bealth, nor ease pain; it makes no in. crease of merit in the person; it creates envy; it hastens misfortune.
“What is a butterfly? 'at best ..!
as poor Richard says. But what madness must it be to run in debt for these su. perfluities! We are offered by the terms of this sale, six months credit ; and that perhaps, has induced some of us to attend it, because we cannot spare the ready money, and hope now to be fine without it. But ah! think shạt you do when you run in debt; you give to another power over your liberty. If you cannot pay at the time, you will be ashamed to see your creditor, you will be in fear when you speak to him, you will make poor, pitiful, sneaking, excuses, and, by degrees, come to lose your veracity, , and sink into base, downright, lying ; for, as poor Rich. #rd says, “ the second yice is lying; the first is running in debt.
And again, to the same purpose, lying rides upon debt's back ;" whereas a free born Englishman ought not io be ashamed nor afraid to see or speak to any man living. 'But poverty often depriyes a man of all spirit and virtue. * It is hard for an empty bag to stand upright," as poor Richard truly says.
What would you think of that-prince, or of that government, who should issue, an edict, forbidding you to dress like a gentleman or gentlewoman, on pain of imprisonment or servitude ? Would you not say, that you were free, have a right to dress as you please, and that such an edict would be a breach of your privileges, and such a government tyrannical? And yet you are about to put yourself under that tyranny, when you run in debt
for such dress! Your creditor has authority, at his plea: sure, to deprive you of your liberty, by confining you in jail for life, or by selling you for a servant, if you should not be able to pay him. ...in
When you have got your bargain, you may, perhaps, think little of payment: But “Creditors (poor Richard tells-us) have better memories than debtors ;” and, in another place, he says, .. . Creditors are a superstitious sect, great observers of set days and times.
The day comes round before you are aváre, and the demand is made before you are prepared to satisfy it ; or; if you bear your debt in mind, the term which at first seemed so long, will, as it lessens, appear extremely short: time will seem to have added wings to his heels as well as his shoulders. ***** Those have a short Lent, (saith poor Richard,) who owe money to be paid at Easter.” Then since, as he says, “ The borrower is a slave to the lender, and the debtor to the creditor,” disdain the chain, preserve your freedom, and maintain your independence :
b . Be industrious and free ; be frugal and free.
At present perhaps, you may think yourselves in thriv. ing circumstances, and that you can bear a little extravagance without injury ; but .**... “For age and want save what you may,
- No morning sun lasts a whole day.” as poor Richard says.. Gain may be temporary and un. certain; but, ever while you live, expense is constant and certain ; and, it is easier to build two chimneys, than to keep one in fuel," as poor Richard says. So, " rather go to bed supperless than rise in debt.”
. Get what you can, and what you get hold,':
as poor Richard says. And when you have got the philosopher's stone, sure you will no longer complain of bad times, or the difficulty of paying taxes:
This doctrine, my friends, is reason and wisdom : but, after all, do not depend too much upon your own indus. try, and frugality, and prudence, though excellent things; for they may all be blasted, without the blessing of heaven; and therefore ask that blessing 'humbly, and be not uncharitable to those that at present seem to want it, but comfort and help them. Remember Job suffered, and was afterwards prosperous.
And now, to conclude, “ Experience keeps a dear school ; but fools will learn in no other, and scarce in that ; for, it is true, " we may give advice, but we cannot give conduct," as poor Richard says. However, re. member this, “ They that will not be counselled cannot be helped ;" as poor Richard says; and further, that “ If you will not hear reason, she will surely rap your knuckles."
Thus the old gentleman ended his harangue. The people heard it, and approved, the doctrine; and immediately practised the contrary, just as if it had been a common sermon ; for the auction opened, and they began to buy extravagantly, notwithstanding all his cautions, and their own fear of taxes.
I found the good man had thoroughly studied my Almanacks, and digested all I had dropt on those topics during the course of 25 years. The frequent mention he made of me must have tired any one else ; but my vanity was wonderfully delighted with it, though I was con scious, that not a tenth part of the wisdom was my own, which he asęribed to me, but rather the gleanings that I
had made of the sense of all ages and nations. However, il resolved to be the better for the echo of it ; and, though I had at first determined to buy stuff for a new