Imágenes de página
[ocr errors]


3. Respecting frugality; the manner of a war is an inducement with many, to cry out living in America is more simple and less ex- for war upon all occasions, and to oppose evepensive than that in England: plain tables, ry proposition of peace. Hence the constant plain clothing, and plain furniture in houses increase of the national debt, and the absolute prevail, with few carriages of pleasure; there, improbability of its ever being discharged. an expensive appearance hurts credit, and is 4. Respecting the amount and certainty of avoided: in England, it is often assumed to income, and solidity of security; the whole guin credit, and continued to ruin. Respect- thirteen states of America are engaged for ing public affairs, the difference is still great- the payment of every debt contracted by the

In England, the salaries of officers, and congress, and the debt to be contracted by the emoluments of office are enormous. The present war is the only debt they will have king has a million sterling per annum, and yet to pay; all, or nearly all

, the former debts of cannot maintain his family free of debt: se- particular colonies being already discharged. cretaries of state, lords of treasury, admiralty, Whereas England will have to pay not only &c. have vast appointments : an auditor of the enormous debt this war must occasion, the exchequer has sixpence in the pound, or but all their vast preceding debt, or the intea fortieth part of all the public money expend rest of it._and while America is enriching ed by the nation; so that when a war costs itself by prizes made upon the British comforty millions, one million is paid to him : an merce, more than ever it did by any commerce inspector of the mint, in the last new coinage, of its own, under the restraints of a Britsh moreceived as his fee 65,0001. sterling per an- nopoly, and the diminution of its revenues, num; to all which rewards no service these and of course less able to discharge the pregentlemen can render the public is by any sent indiscreet increase of its expenses. means equivalent. All this is paid by the peo 5. Respecting prospects of greater future ple, who are oppressed by taxes so occasion- ability, Britain has none such. Her islands ed, and thereby rendered less able to contri- are circumscribed by the ocean; and exceptbute to the payment of necessary national ing a few parks or forests, she has no new debts. In America, salaries, where indispensa- land to cultivate, and cannot therefore extend ble, are extremely low; but much of the public improvements. Her numbers too, instead of business is done gratis. The honour of serving increasing from increased subsistence, are the public ably and faithfully is deemed suffi- continually diminishing from growing luxury, cient. Public spirit really exists there, and and the increasing difficulties of maintaining has great effects." In England it is universally families, which of course discourage early deemed a nonentity, and whoever pretends to marriages. Thus she will have fewer people it is laughed at as a fool, or suspected as a to assist in paying her debts, and that dimiknave. The committees of congress which nishing number will be poorer. America, on form the board of war, the board of treasury, the contrary, has, besides her lands already culthe board of foreign affairs, the naval board, tivated, a vast territory yet to be cultivated; that for accounts, &c. all attend the business which, being cultivated continually increases of their respective functions, without any sa- in value with the increase of people; and the lary or emolument whatever, though they people, who double themselves by a natural spend in it much more of their time than any propagation every twenty-five years, will lord of treasury or admiralty in England can double yet faster, by the accession of strane spare from his amusements. A British mi- gers, as long as lands are to be had for new nister lately computed, that the whole ex- families; so that every twenty years there pense of the Americans, in their civil govern- will be a double number of inhabitants obliged ment over three millions of people amounted to discharge the public debts; and those into but 70,0001. sterling, and drew from thence habitants, being more opulent, may pay their a canclusion, that they ought to be taxed, until shares with greater ease. their expense was equal in proportion to that 6. Respecting prudence in general affairs, which it costs Britain to govern eight mil- and the advantages to be expected from the lions. He had no idea of a contrary conclu- loan desired; the Americans are cultivators sion, that if three millions may be well go- of land ; those engaged in fishery and comverned for 70,0001. eight millions may be as merce are few, compared with the others. well governed for three times that sum, and They have ever conducted their several gothat therefore the expense of his own govern- vernments with wisdom, avoiding wars, and ment should be diminished. In that corrupt- vain expensive projects, delighting only in ed nation no man is ashamed of being concern- their peaceable occupations, which must, ed in lucrative government jobs, in which the considering the extent of their uncultivated public money is egregiously misapplied and territory, find them employment still for ages. squandered, the treasury pillaged, and more Whereas England, ever unquiet, ambitious, numerous and heavy taxes accumulated, to avaricious, imprudent, and quarrelsome, is half the great oppression of the people. But the of the time engaged in war, always at an exprospect of a greater number of such jobs by pense infinitely greater than the advantages

to be obtained by it, if successful. Thus they (tish merchants would operate to prevent that made war against Spain in 1739, for a claim distress, intended to be brought upon Britain, of about 95,0001. (scarce a groat for each in- by our stoppage of commerce with her; for dividual of the nation) and spent forty millions the merchants receiving this money, and no sterling in the war, and the lives of fifty thou- orders with it for farther supplies, would eisand men; and finally made peace without ther lay it out in public funds, or in employobtaining satisfaction for the sum claimed. ing manufacturers to accumulate goods for a Indeed, there is scarce a nation in Europe, future hungry market in America upon an against which she has not made war on some expected accommodation, by which means the frivolous pretext or other, and thereby impru- funds would be kept up and the manufacturers dently accumulated a debt, that has brought prevented from murmuring. But against this her on the verge of bankruptcy. But the it was alleged, that injuries from ministers most indiscreet of all her wars, is the present should not be revenged on merchants; that against America, with whom she might, for the credit was in consequence of private conages, have preserved her profitable connex- tracts, made in confidence of good faith; ion only by a just and equitable conduct that these ought to be held sacred, and faithShe is now acting like a rad shop-keeper, fully complied with; for that, whatever pubwho, by beating those that pass his doors, at- lic utility might be supposed to arise from a tempts to make them come in and be his breach of private faith, it was unjust, and customers. America cannot submit to such would in the end be found unwise, honesty treatment, without being first ruined, and, being in truth the best policy. On this prinbeing ruined, her custom will be worth no- ciple the proposition was universally rejected; thing: England, to effect this, is increasing and though the English prosecuted the war her debt, and irretrievably ruining herself with unexampled barbarity, burning our deAmerica, on the other hand, aims only to es- fenceless towns in the midst of winter, and tablish her liberty, and that freedom of com- arming savages against us; the debt was merce which will be advantageous to all Eu- punctually paid; and the merchants of Lonrope; and by abolishing that monopoly which don have testified to the parliament, and will she laboured under she will profit infinitely testify to all the world, that from their expemore than enough to repay any debt which rience in dealing with us they had, before the she may contract to accomplish it.

war, no apprehension of our unfairness : and 7. Respecting character in the honest pay- that since the war they have been convinced, ment of debts; the punctuality with which that their good opinion of us was well founded. America has discharged her public debts was England, on the contrary, an old, corrupt goshown under the first head. And the gene- vernment, extravagant, and profligate nation, ral good disposition of the people to such sees herself deep in debt, which she is in no punctuality has been manifested in their faith- condition to pay; and yet is madly, and disful payment of private debts to England, since honestly running deeper, without any possithe commencement of this war. There were bility of discharging her debt, but by a public not wanting some politicians [in America,] bankruptcy. who proposed stopping that payment, until It appears, therefore, from the general inpeace should be restored, alleging, that in the dustry, frugality, ability, prudence, and virtue usual course of commerce, and of the credit of America, that she is a much safer debtor given, there was always a debt existing than Britain ;-to say nothing of the satisfacequal to the trade of eighteen months: that tion generous minds must have in reflecting, the trade amounting to five millions sterling that by loans to America they are opposing per annum, the debt must be seven millions tyranny, and aiding the cause of liberty, which and a half; that this sum paid to the Bri- is the cause of all mankind.






Place an iron shot of three or four inches To Peter Collinson, Esq. F. R. S. London. diameter on the mouth of a clean dry glass

bottle. By a fine silken thread from the ceil. PHILADELPHIA, March 28, 1747. Your kind present of an electric tube, ing, right

over the mouth of the bottle, suswith directions for using it, has put several of of a marble; the thread of such a length,

pend a small cork-ball, about the bigness on making electrical experiments, in which we have observed some particular side of the shot. Electrify the shot, and the

as that the cork-ball may rest against the phenomena that we look upon to be new. I shall therefore communicate them to you in

ball will be repelled to the distance of four my next, though possibly they may not be of five inches, more or less, according to new to you, as among the numbers daily em- state, if you present to the shot the point of

the quantity of electricity.–When in this ployed in those experiments on your side the water , it is probable some one or other a long, slender

, sharp bodkin, at six or eight has hit on the same observations. For my stroyed, and the cork flies to the shot. A

inches distance, the repellency is instantly deown part, I never was before engaged in any blunt body must be brought within an inch, study that so totally engrossed my attention and draw a spark to produce the same effect. and my time as this has lately done ; for what To prove that the electrical fire is drawn off with making experiments when I can be alone, and repeating them to my friends and by the point, if you take the blade of the bodacquaintance, who, from the novelty

of the kin out of the wooden handle, and fix it in a thing, come continually in crowds to see them, stick of sealing-wax, and then present it at

the distance aforesaid, or if you bring it very I have, during some months past, had little leisure for any thing else. I am, &c.

near, no such effect follows; but sliding one B. FRANKLIN.

finger along the wax till you touch the blade,

and the ball flies to the shot immediately. To the same.

If you present the point in the dark, you will

see, sometimes at a foot distance and more, a Wonderful effect of points.-- Positive and nega- light gather upon it, like that of a fire-fly, or feit Spider.-simple and commodious electri glow worm; the less sharp the point,' the cal Machine.

nearer you must bring it to observe the light; PHILADELPHIA, July 11, 1747.

and at whatever distance you see the light, In my last I informed you that, in pursuing you may draw off the electrical fire, and de our electrical inquiries, we had observed some stroy the repellency.-If a cork ball so sus particular phenomena, which we looked upon pended be repelled by the tube, and a point to be new, and of which I promised to give be presented quick to it, though at a consideyou some account, though I apprehended they rable distance, it is surprising to see how sudmight not possibly be new to you, as so many wood will do near as well as those of iron,

denly it flies back to the tube. Points of hands are daily employed in electrical experiments on your side the water, some or other provided the wood is not dry; for perfectly of which would probably hit on the same ob dry wood will no more conduct electricity servations.

than sealing wax. The first is the wonderful effect of pointed

To show that points will throw off* as well bodies, both in drawing off and throwing off the electrical fire. For example.

* This power of points to throw off the electrical fire, was first communicated to me by my ingenious friend

Mr. Thomas Hopkinson, since deceased, whose virtues * The Library Company, an institution of the author's, and integrity, in every situation of life, public and pri. founded in 1730. To which company the present was vate, will ever make his memory dear to those who

knew him, and knew how to value him.



as draw off the electrical fire ; lay a long , freely on fine wire axles. Also by little sharp needle upon the shot, and you cannot wheels of the same matter, but formed like electrise the shot so as to make it repel the water-wheels. Of the disposition and applicork-ball.–Or fix a needle to the end of a cation of which wheels, and the various phesuspended gun-barrel, or iron-rod, so as to nomena resulting, I could, if I had time, fill point beyond it like a little bayonet ;* and you a sheet.* The impossibility of electrising while it remains there, the gun-barrel, or rod, one's self (though standing on wax) by rubcannot by applying the tube to the other end bing the tube, and drawing the fire from it; be electrised so as to give a spark, the fire and the manner of doing it, by passing the continually running out silently at the point. tube near a person or thing standing on the In the dark you may see it make the same floor, &c. had also occurred to us some months appearence as it does in the case before-men- before Mr. Watson's ingenious Sequel came tioned.

to hand, and these were some of the new The repellency between the cork-ball and things I intended to have communicated to the shot is likewise destroyed. l. By sifting you.—But now I need only mention some fine sand on it; this does it gradually. 2. By particulars not hinted in that piece, with our breathing on it. 3. By making a smoke about reasonings thereupon: though perhaps the latit from burning wood. 4. By candle-light, ter might well enough be spared. even though the candle is at a foot distance: 1. A person standing on wax, and rubbing these do it suddenly.—The light of a bright the tube, and another person on wax drawing coal from a wood fire, and the light of a red the fire, they will both of them (provided they hot iron do it likewise ; but not at so great a do not stand so as to touch one another) appear distance. Smoke from dry rosin dropt on hot to be electrised, to a person standing on the iron, does not destroy the repellency; but is floor ; that is, he will perceive a spark on apattracted by both shot and cork ball

, forming proaching each of them with his knuckle. proportionable atmospheres round them, mak 2. But if the persons on wax touch one ing them look beautifully, somewhat like some another during the exciting of the tube, neiof the figures in Burnet's or Whiston's The-ther of them will appear to be electrised. ory of the Earth.

3. If they touch one another after exciting N. B. This experiment should be made in the tube, and drawing the fire as aforesaid, a closet, where the air is very still, or it will there will be a stronger spark between them be apt to fail.

than was between either of them and the perThe light of the sun thrown strongly on son on the floor. both cork and shot by a looking-glass for a 4. After such strong spark, neither of them long time together, does not impair the re

discover any electricity. pellency in the least. This difference between These appearances we attempt to account fire-light and sun-light is another thing that for thus: we suppose, as aforesaid, that elecseems new and extraordinary to us. I trical fire is a common element, of which

We had for some time been of opinion, that every one of the three persons abovementhe electrical fire was not created by friction, tioned has his equal share, before any operabut collected, being really an element diffus- tion is begun with the tube. A, who stands ed among, and attracted by other matter, par- on wax, and rubs the tube, collects the electicularly by water and metals. We had even trical fire from himself into the glass; and discovered and demonstrated its afflux to the his communication with the common stock electrical sphere, as well as its efflux, by being cut off by the wax, his body is not again means of little light windmill wheels made of immediately supplied. B, (who stands on stiff paper vanes, fixed obliquely, and turning wax likewise) passing his knuckle along near

the tube, receives the fire which was collect* This was Mr. Hopkinson's experiment, made with ed by the glass from A; and his communicaan expectation of drawing a more sharp and powerful tion with the common stock being likewise spark from the point, as from a kind of focus, and he cut off, he retains the additional quantity rewas surprised to find little or none.

We suppose every particle of sand, moisture, or ceived.--To C, standing on the floor, both apoff with it a portion of the electrical fire, but that the pear to be electrised : for he having only the same still subsists in those particles, till they communi. middle quantity of electrical fire, receives a cate it to something else, and that it is never really de spark upon approaching B, who has an over we do not imagine that the element is thereby de quantity ; but gives one to A, who has an unstroyed or annihilated, but only dispersed, each particle der quantity. If A and B approach to touch of water carrying off in vapour its portion of the fire, each other, the spark is stronger, because the

1 This different effect probably did not arise from difference between them is greater; after any difference in the light, but rather from the parti. cles separated from the candle, being first attracted and * These experiments with the wheels, were made and then repelled, carrying off the electric matter with them; communicated to me by my worthy and ingenious and from the rarefying of the air, between the glowing friend Mr Philip Syng; but we afterwards discovered coal or red hot iron, and the electrised shot, through that the motion of those wheels was not owing to any which rarefied air the electric fluid could more readily afflux or eflux of the electric fluid, but to various circum

stances of attraction and repulsion. 1750.

which it had attracted and attached to itself.


such touch there is no spark between either there will be a small spark; but when their of them and C, because the electrical fire in lips approach, they will be struck and shockall is reduced to the original equality. If they ed; the same if another gentleman and lady, touch while electrising, the equality is never C and D, standing also on wax, and joining destroyed, the fire only circulating. Hence hands with A and B, salute or shake hands. have arisen some new terms among us; we We suspend by find silk thread a counterfeit say B, (and bodies like circumstanced) is spider, made of a small piece of burnt cork, electrised positively; A, negatively. Or ra- with legs of linen thread, and a grain or two ther, B is electrised plus ; A, minus. And of lead stuck in him, to give him more weight; we daily in our experiments electrise bodies upon the table, over which he hangs, we plus or minus, as we think proper.—To elec- stick a wire upright, as high as the phial and trise plus or minus, no more needs to be wire, four or five inches from the spider ; known than this, that the parts of the tube or then we animate him, by setting the electrisphere that are rubbed, do, in the instant of fied phial at the same distance on the other the friction, attract the electrical fire, and side of him; he will immediately fly to the therefore take it from the thing rubbing : wire of the phial, bend his legs in touching it, the same parts immediately, as the friction then spring off

, and fly to the wire on the taupon them ceases, are disposed to give the ble, thence again to the wire of the phial, fire they have received, to any body that has playing with his legs against both, in a very less. Thus you may circulate it, as Mr. Wat- entertaining manner, appearing perfectly son has shown; you may also accumulate or alive to persons unacquainted : he will consubtract it, upon, or from any body, as you tinue this motion an hour or more in dry weaconnect that body with the rubber or with the ther. We electrify, upon wax in the dark, receiver, the communication with the common a book that has a double line of gold round stock being cut off

. We think that ingenious upon the covers, and then apply a knuckle gentleman was deceived when he imagined to the gilding; the fire appears every where (in his Sequel) that the electrical fire came upon the gold like a flash of lightning ; not down the wire from the ceiling to the gun- upon the leather, nor,


you touch the leather barrel, thence to the sphere, and so electrised instead of the gold. We rub our tubes with the machine and the man turning the wheel, buckskin, and observe always to keep the &c. We suppose it was driven of, and not same side to the tube, and never to sully the brought on through that wire; and that the tube by handling ; thus they work readily machine and man, &c. were electrised minus ; and easily, without the least fatigue, especi. i. e. had less electrical fire in them than things ally if kept in tight pasteboard cases, fined in common.

with flannel, and sitting close to the tube.* As the vessel is just upon sailing, I cannot This I mention, because the European papers give you so large an account of American on electricity frequently speak of rubbing the electricity as I intended : I shall only men- tube as a fatiguing exercise. Our spheres tion a few particulars

more.- We find granu- are fixed on iron axles, which pass through lated lead better to fill the phial with, than them. At one end of the axis there is a small water, being easily warmed, and keeping handle, with which you turn the sphere like warm and dry in damp air.-We fire spirits a common grindstone. This we find very comwith the wire of the phial.-We light can- modious, as the machine takes up but little dles just blown out, by drawing a spark room, is portable, and may be inclosed in a among the smoke between the wire and snuf- tight box, when not in use. It is true, the fers. - We represent lightning, by passing sphere does not turn so swift as when the the wire in the dark, over a china plate that great wheel is used : but swiftness we think has gilt flowers, or applying it to gilt frames of little importance, since a few turns will of looking glasses, &c.-We electrise a per- charge the phial, &c. sufficiently.* son twenty or more times running, with a

B. FRANKLIN. touch of the finger on the wire, thus: he stands on wax; give him the electrised bottle in his hand ; touch the wire with your finger, and then touch his hand or face; there are To Peter Collinson, London. sparks every time. * _We increase the force Observations on the Leyden Bottle, with Expeof the electrical kiss vastly, thus: let A and

riments proving the different electrical State B stand on wax; or A on wax, and B on the

of its different Surfaces. floor; give one of them the electrised phial

PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 1, 1747. in hand; let the other take hold of the wire;

The necessary trouble of copying long let* By taking a spark from the wire, the electricity ters, which perhaps, when they come to your within the bottle is diminished; the outside of the bot. tle then draws some from the person holding it, and * Our tubes are made here of green glasa, 27 or 30 leaves him in the negative state. Then when his inches long, as big as can be grasped. hand or face is touched, an equal quantity is restored to t This simple easily-made machine was a contri. him from the person touching.

vance of Mr. Syng's.

« AnteriorContinuar »