And, having repeated this observation the three following mornings, I found always precisely the same result. Yet it so happens, that when I speak of this discovery to others, I can easily perceive by their countenances, though they forbear expressing it in words, that they do not quite believe me.
One, indeed, who is a learned natural philosopher, has assured me that I must certainly be mistaken as to the circumstance of the light coming into my room; for it being well known, as he says, that there could be no light abroad at that hour, it follows that none could enter from without; and that of consequence, my windows being accidentally left open, instead of letting in the light, had only served to let out the darkness; and he used many ingenious arguments to show me how I might, by that means, have been deceived.
I owned that he puzzled me a little, but he did not satisfy me; and the subsequent observations I made, as above mentioned, confirmed me in my first opinion. This event has given rise in my mind to several serious and important reflections. I considered that, if I had not been awakened so early in the morning, I should have slept six hours longer by the light of the sun, and in exchange have lived six hours the following night by candle-light; and, the latter being a much more expensive light than the former, my love of economy induced me to muster up what little arithmetic I was master of, and to make some calculations, which I shall give you, after observing that utility is, in my opinion the test of value in matters of invention, and that a discovery which can be applied to no use, or is not good for something, is good for nothing.
I took for the basis of my calculation the supposition that there are one hundred thousand families in Paris, and that these families consume in the night half a pound of bougies, or candles, per hour. I think this is a moderate allowance, taking one family with another; for though I believe some consume less, I know that many consume a great deal more. Then estimating seven hours per day as the medium quantity between the time of the sun's rising and ours, he rising during the six following months from six to eight hours before noon, and there being seven hours of course per night in which we burn candles, the account will stand thus; In the six months between the 20th of March and the 20th of September, there are.
If it should be said, that people are apt to be obstinately attached to old customs, and that it will be difficult to induce them to rise before noon, consequently my discovery can be of little use; I answer, Nil desperandum. I believe all who have common sense, as soon as they have learnt from this paper that it is daylight when the sun rises, will contrive to rise with him; and, to compel the rest, I would propose the following regulations; First.
Let a tax be laid of a louis per window, on every window that is provided with shutters to keep out the light of the sun. Let the same salutary operation of police be made use of, to prevent our burning candles, that inclined us last winter to be more economical in burning wood; that is, let guards be placed in the shops of the wax and tallow chandlers, and no family be permitted to be supplied with more than one pound of candles per week.
Every morning, as soon as the sun rises, let all the bells in every church be set ringing; and if that is not sufficient? Oblige a man to rise at four in the morning, and it is more than probable he will go willingly to bed at eight in the evening; and, having had eight hours sleep, he will rise more willingly at four in the morning following.
But this sum of ninety-six millions and seventy-five thousand livres is not the whole of what may be saved by my economical project. You may observe, that I have calculated upon only one half of the year, and much may be saved in the other, though the days are shorter.
Besides, the immense stock of wax and tallow left unconsumed during the summer, will probably make candles much cheaper for the ensuing winter, and continue them cheaper as long as the proposed reformation shall be supported. For the great benefit of this discovery, thus freely communicated and bestowed by me on the public, I demand neither place, pension, exclusive privilege, nor any other reward whatever. I expect only to have the honour of it.
And yet I know there are little, envious minds, who will, as usual, deny me this and say, that my invention was known to the ancients, and perhaps they may bring passages out of the old books in proof of it. I will not dispute with these people, that the ancients knew not the sun would rise at certain hours; they possibly had, as we have, almanacs that predicted it; but it does not follow thence, that they knew he gave light as soon as he rose.
This is what I claim as my discovery. If the ancients knew it, it might have been long since forgotten; for it certainly was unknown to the moderns, at least to the Parisians, which to prove, I need use but one plain simple argument. He argued that slavery was not as cost effective or productive as free labor.
The notion of the population doubling every 25 years influenced Thomas Malthus , who quotes paragraph 22 of the essay, with attribution, in his work An Essay on the Principle of Population. Through Malthus, the essay is said to have influenced Charles Darwin.
While the essay was an important contribution to economics and population growth , recent attention has focused on the final two paragraphs. Franklin was alarmed by the influx of German immigrants to Pennsylvania. The German immigrants were lacking in a liberal political tradition, the English language, and English culture.
In Paragraph 23 of the essay, Franklin wrote "why should the Palatine Boors be suffered to swarm into our settlements, and by herding together establish their languages and manners to the exclusion of ours? Why should Pennsylvania, founded by the English, become a colony of Aliens, who will shortly be so numerous as to Germanize us instead of our Anglifying them, and will never adopt our language or customs, any more than they can acquire our complexion?
Trimbur finds that Franklin's main concern over the growth of unassimilated Germans is the threat to English culture and language. Franklin favored immigration of Anglo-Saxons, who, according to Ormond Seavey, he identifies as the only " White People " among the various peoples of the world. Such views have been condemned as racist in more recent literature.
Wood and others note that Franklin viewed this kind of bias as universal: Franklin ends the section with "But perhaps I am partial to the complexion of my Country, for such kind of partiality is natural to Mankind. Recognizing the potential offense that these comments might give, Franklin deleted the final paragraph from later editions of the essay, but his derogatory remarks about the German and Dutch were picked up and used against him by his political enemies in Philadelphia, leading to a decline in support among the Pennsylvania Dutch.
Partly as a result, he was defeated in the October election to the Pennsylvania Provincial Assembly. President of Pennsylvania — , Ambassador to France — From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Observations concerning the Increase of Mankind, peopling of Countries, etc. From Policy to Theory". Population and Development Review. Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society. The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin. The Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin.
- Benjamin Franklin (An A+ Essays Original Paper, written by WeirdHTML) Benjamin Franklin was one of the first and most famous scientists in America. He was a man of many talents and interests. Franklin was always curios about they way things work, and he always tried to .
But, in , James Franklin was imprisoned for writing an ‘offensive article’, and was mistaken under Benjamin Franklin’s name. In October , Benjamin decided to leave Boston because of James Franklin, and all the disagreements he had with him.
Benjamin Franklin was conceived on Milk Street, in Boston, Massachusetts, on January 17, , and purified through water at Old South Meeting House. He was one of seventeen kids destined to Josiah . Benjamin Franklin was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. He was a great politician and inventor, as well as a few other professions. Ben Franklin accomplished very many things in his lifetime.
Benjamin Franklin (An A+ Essays Original Paper, written by WeirdHTML) Benjamin Franklin was one of the first and most famous scientists in America. He was a man of many talents and interests. Franklin was always curios about they way things work, and he always tried to . The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin Essay Words 5 Pages In The Autobiography, Benjamin Franklin recounts the many paramount experiences throughout his life that shaped him into great American figure he was known to be.