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cumstances, should have lived so long by the smoky, unwholesome and enormously expensive light of candles, if they had really known that they might have as much pure light of the sun for nothing." I am, &c.
And now, as Dr. Franklin is permitted to breathe a little from his herculean toils, let us good reader, breathe å little too, and amuse surselves with the following anecdotes.
Nothing can better illustrate the spirit, which doctor Franklin carried with him to the court of Louis XVI.; and the spirit he found there.
On doctor Franklin's arrival at Paris, as plenipotentiary from the United States, during the revolution, the king expressed a wish to see him immediately. As there was no going to the court of France in those days without perinission of the wigmaker, a wigmaker of course was sent for. In an instant a richly dressed Monsieur, his arms folded in a prodigious muff of furs, and a long sword by his side, made his appearance. It was the king's WIGMAKER, with his servant in livery, a long sword by his side too, and a load of sweet-scented bandboxes, full of "de wig," as he said, "de superb wig for de great docteer Franklin.” One of the wigs was tried on a world too small! Band box after band box was tried; but all with the same ill success! The wigmaker fell into the most violent rage, to the extreme mortification of doctor Franklin, that a gentleman so bedecked with silks and perfumes, should, notwithstanding, be such a child. Presently, however, as in all the transports of a grand discovery, the wigmaker cried out to doctor Franklin, that he had just found out where the fault lay—“not in his wig as too small; O no, by gar! his wig no too small; but de docteer's head too big; great deal too big." Franklin siniling, replied, that the fault could hardly lie there; for that his head was made of God Almighty himself, who was not subject to err. Upon this the wigmaker took in a little; but still con. tended that there must be something the matter with doctor Franklin's head. It was at any rate, he said, out of the fashion. He begged doctor Franklin would only please for remember, dat his head had not de hon
neer to be made in PARREE. No, by Gar! for if it been made in PARREE, it no bin more dan half such a head. "None of the French noblesse,” he swore, "had a head any ting like his. Not de great duke D'Orleans, nor de grand monarch himself had half such a head as docteer Franklin. And he did not see, he said, what business any body had wid a head more big dan de head of the grand monarque."
Pleased to see the poor wigmaker recover his good humour, Dr. Franklin could not find in his heart to put a check to his childish rant, but related one of his fine anecdotes, which struck the wigmaker with such an idea of his wit, that as he retired, which he did, bowing most profoundly, he shrugged his shoulders, and with a look most significantly arch, he said:
“Ah, docteer Frankline! docteer Faankline! I no wonder your head too big for my wig. By gar l'fraid your head be too big for all de French nationg."
THE BLUE YARN STOCKINGS.
WHEN doctor Franklin was received at the French court as American minister, he felt some scruples of conscience in complying with their fashions as to dress. “He hoped,” he said to the minister, “that as he was himself a very plain man, and represented a plain 'republican people, the king would indulge bis desire to appear at court in his usual dress. Independent of this, the season of the year, he said, rendered the change from warm yarn stockings to fine silk, somewhat dangerous."
The French minister made him a bow, but said, that THE FASHION was too sacred a thing for him to meddle with, but he would do himself the honour to mention it to his MAJESTY.
The king smiled, and returned word that doctor Franklin was welcome to appear at court in any uress he pleased. In spite of that delicate respect for strangers, for which the French are so remarkable, the cour-, tiers could not help staring, at first, at doctor Franklin's quaker-like dress, and especially his “ELUE YARN STOCKINGS.” But it soon appeared as though he had
been introduced upon this splendid theatre only to demonstrate that, great genius, like true beauty, “needs not the foreign aid of ornament;" The court were so dazzled with the brilliancy of his mind that they never looked at his stockings. And while many other ministers who figured in all the gaudy fashions of the day are now forgotten, the name of doctor Franklin is still mentioned in Paris with all the ardor of the most affectionate enthusiasm.
IMAGINATION can hardly conceive a succession of pleasures more elegant and refined than those which Dr. Franklin, now on the shady side of three score and ten, continued daily to enjoy in the vicinity of Paris his mornings constantly devoted to his beloved studies, and his evenings to the cheerful society of his friends, the greatest monarch of Europe heaping him with honors unasked, and the brightest Wits and BEAUTIES of his court vying with each other in their attentions to him. And thus as the golden hours rolled along, they still found him happy-gratefully contrasting his present glory, with his humble origin, and thence breathing nothing but benevolence to man-firmly confiding in the care of heaven-and fully persuaded that his smiles would yet descend upon his countrymen, now fighting the good fight of liberty and happiness.
While waiting in strong hope of this most desirable of all events, he received, by express, December 1777, the welcome news that the battle had been joined in America, and that God had delivered a noble wing of the British army into the hands of the brave republicans at Saratoga. O ye, who, rejecting the philosophy of all embracing love, know no joys beyond what the miser feels when his own little heap increases. how faintly can you conceive what this great apostle of liberty enjoyed when he found that his countrymen still retained the fire of their gallant fathers, and were resolved to live free or press a glorious grave! He lost no time to improve this splendid victory to the good of his country. In several audiences with the king and his ministers, he clearly demonstrated that France in all her days of ancient danger had never known so dark a cloud impending over her as at this awful crisis. “If Great Britain," said he, “already so powerful were to subdue the revolted colonies and add all North America to her empire, she would in twenty years be strong enough to crush the power of France and not leave her an island nor a ship on the ocean." As a sudden flash of lightning from the opening clouds before the burst of thunder and rains, such was the shock produced by this argument on the mind of every thinking man throughout France. The courtiers with all their talents for dissembling could not conceal their hostile feelings from the British minister resident an ony them. He marked it, not without senti. merits of answering hostility, which he could no better conceal, and which, indeed, after the onest bluntness, of his rational character, he did not care to conceal. The increased attentions paid to Dr. Franklin, and the rejoicings in Paris on account of the American victories, were but illy calculated to soothe his displeasure. Bitter complaiiits weri presently forwardeci to his court, angry remonstrances to the Frencls cabinet fullowedand in a short time the embers of ancient hate were
to flames of fury so diabolical that othing but war, with all its rivers of human blood could extinguish it. War, of course. was proclaimed-Paris was illuminated and the thunder of the Royal cannon soon announced to the willing citize is that the die was cast, and that the Grand Monarque was become the Ally of the United States.
“While there is any thing to be done nothing is done," said Cæsa". Franklin thought so too. He had succeeded in his efforts to persuade the war ike French to take part with his oppressed countrymen; but tie Spaniards and the Dutch were still neutra. To rouse their hostile feelinas against Great Britain, and to make them the hearty partizans of Washington, was his next study. The event quickly shewed that he had studied human nature with success. He who had been the playmate of lightings for the glory of Gud, found no difficulty in stirring up the wrath of man to praise him-by cbasti
sing the sons of violence. The tall black ships of war were soon seen to rush forth from the ports of Holland and Spain, laden with the implements of death. to arrest the mad ambition of Great Britain, and maintain the ballance of power. How dearly ought the American people to prize their liberties, for which such bloody contribution was laid on the human race! Imagination glances with terror on that dismal war whose spread was over half the solid and half the watery globe.
Its de vouring fires burned from the dark wilds of North Amer. ica to the distant isles of India; and the blood of its victims was mingled with the brine of every ocean. But, thanks to God, the conflict though violent was but short. And much of the honour of bringing it to a close is to be conceded to the instrumentality of Dr. Frank. lin.
We have seen that in 1763, he was sent (of Heaven no doubt, for it was an act worthy of his all benevolent character,) a preacher of righteousness, to the proud court of Britain. His luminous preachings, through the press,) on the injustice and unconstitutionality of the ministerial taxing measures on the colonies, shed such light, that thousands of honest Englishmen set their faces against them, and also against the war to which they saw it was tending. These converts to jus. tice, these doves of peace, were not sufficiently numerous to defeat the warhawks of their bloody purposes. But when they found that the war into which they had plunged with such confidence, had not, instantly, as they expected, reduced the colonies to slavish submission; but that, instead thereof, one half Europe in favour of America, was in arms against them with a horrible destruction of lives and property which they had not counted on and of which they saw no end, they seriously deplored their folly in not pursuing the counsel of doctor Franklin. The nation was still, however, dragged on in war, plunging like a stalled animal, deeper and deeper in disaster and distress, until the capture of lord Cornwallis and his arıny, came like a thunder bolt, intlicting on the war party a death blow, from which they never afterwards recovered.
Doctor Franklin received this most welcome piece of news, the surrender of lord Conwallis, by express