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placed first on the spindle, the next in size placed next, and so far within the first as to leave about an inch of rim projecting, and accessible to the finger; and so, in regular succession of sizes, and due proportion in all respects, with the others. All the glasses being thus adjusted, the spindle, projecting a few inches at each end, was laid horizontally upon brass gudgeons fitted to a frame, supported by four legs, and covered with a mahogany case, opening and shutting like that of a pianoforte. At the larger end, outside of the gudgeon and the case, the spindle presented a square shank, to which was fitted a wheel connected with a treadle under the case, by means of which the performer turned the spindle and its glasses with his foot, just as a spinner turns her wheel. A good deal of grinding and polishing was necessary to bring the glasses into perfect unison; a cup of water and a sponge were provided, for the
performer to wet his fingers from time to time; and, in order to bring out the finest tones, the glasses were to turn from, not toward, the ends of the fingers.
At the close of his long and minute letter to Beccaria, from which we have taken only such particulars as were necessary to give an idea of the instrument, and the ingenuity displayed in its construction, Franklin, speaking of its merits, says : “ Its tones are incomparably sweet beyond those of any other; they may be swelled and softened at pleasure, by stronger or weaker pressures of the finger, and continued to any length; and the instrument being once well tuned, never wants tuning again ;” and he adds : “In honor of your musical language, I have borrowed from it the name of this instrument, calling it the Armonica."
Among the latest public testimonies received by Franklin, during his present sojourn in England, of the high estimation in which he was held, was the degree of doctor of laws conferred upon him, in April, 1762, by the university of Oxford. His son, also, received at the same time the degree of master of arts; and was, moreover, just before his father sailed for America, appointed, by the king in council, governor of New Jersey. This appointment was procured through the influence of the earl of Bute, who was then the favorite minister of the young king George III., and who was moved on the occasion, it is supposed, by his physician, Sir John Pringle, one of the elder Franklin's friends and correspondents. From a letter to the governor of Pennsylvania, written a few months after, by Thomas Penn, it appears that the latter cherished some expectation that this appointment of the younger Franklin would moderate, if not remove, his father's opposition to the Proprietary policy in Pennsylvania; for in that letter he says : “I am told
will find Mr. Franklin more tractable; and I believe we shall, in matters of prerogative, as his son must obey instructions, and what he is ordered to do, [in Jersey,] the father can not well oppose in Pennsylvania.” It seems to have been difficult for this Proprietary to comprehend the character of a man whose public conduct was guided solely by his sense of justice and his convictions of duty. At all events, Franklin adhered to his principles as steadfastly as ever, and continued to be the trusted champion of the rights of the people of Pennsylvania, and the object of the bitterest hostility of the Proprietary and his unscrupulous partisans.
Before leaving England, Franklin wrote his farewell to Mr. Hume, Lord Kames, and other eminent friends in Scotland. In his letter to the former, written on the 19th of May, he returns the compliment respecting wisdom and gold, by referring to the unparalleled plenty of gold and silver in Jerusalem, in the time of Solomon, as a type of the abundance of wisdom in Britain ; and
closes with the expression of his regret, to use his own words, “at leaving a country in which he had received so much friendship, and friends whose conversation had been so agreeable and so improving to him." In his letter to Lord Kames, written at Portsmouth, on the 17th of August, he says : "I am now waiting here only for a wind to waft me to America; but I can not leave this happy island and my friends in it, without extreme regret, though I am going to a country and a people that I love. I am going from the old world to the new; and I fancy I feel like those who are leaving this world for the next-grief at the parting, fear for the passage, hope of the future. These different passions all affect the mind at once, and they have tendered me down exceedingly.” After referring, in terms of strong commendation, to the celebrated work of Lord Kames, then just published, entitled Elements of Criticism, of which the author had sent him a copy, he closes as follows
Wherever I am I shall esteem the friendship you honor me with, as one of the felicities of my life; I shall endeavor to cultivate it by a more punctual correspondence; and I hope frequently to hear of your welfare and prosperity.” Not many days after the date of this letter, and before the end of August, Franklin sailed for America, in company with ten merchant-ships under convoy of a man-of-war. This fleet took the southern track, and touched at the island of Madeira. In a letter to Lord Kames, written after returning to England on his second mission, he gives a brief account of this passage, in the following words :
“We had a pleasant passage to Madeira, where we were kindly received and entertained ; our nation being then in high honor with the Portuguese, on account of the protection we were then affording them against France and Spain. It is a fertile island, and the differ
eeting ed' ன் Solomon
ent heights and situations among its mountains, afford such temperatures of air, that all the fruits of northern and southern countries are produced there; wheat, apples, grapes, peaches, oranges, lemons, plantains, bananas, and so forth. Here we furnished ourselves with fresh provisions of all kinds; and after a few days proceeded on our voyage, running southward until we got into the trade-winds, and then with them westward till we drew near the coast of America. The weather was so favorable, that there were few days in which we could not visit from ship to ship, dining with each other, and on board of the man-of-war; which made the time pass much more agreeably than when one goes in a single ship; for this was like travelling in a moving village, with all one's neighbors in company."
He reached home on the 1st of November, 1762, after an absence from Philadelphia of a little less than six years. He found his wife and daughter in good health; " the latter," says he “grown quite a woman, with many amiable accomplishments acquired in my absence; and my friends as hearty and affectionate as ever, with whom my house was filled for many days, to congratulate me on my return."
His son, who remained behind him in England to consummate, with his father's consent, and approbation,” his marriage with “a very agreeable West India lady, with whom he was very happy," arrived at Philadelphia with his wife, in the following February; and after a few days delay at home, he went, accompanied by his father, to take possession of his office as governor of New Jersey. “He met," says Franklin, “with the kindest reception from people of all ranks, and has lived with them ever since, in the greatest harmony."
MISSION TO ENGLAND-ORIGIN OF THE STAMP-ACT —
FRANKLIN, on his return to Philadelphia, was received, as already intimated, with the strongest demonstration of respect and affection, by his political as well as personal friends. During his absence he had been, every year elected as one of the representatives of the city to the Provincial Assembly; and as that body was in session when he returned, he soon took his seat as a member. On his appearance in his place, the house proceeded without delay to the consideration of his agency; and a committee having been raised to examine his accounts, unanimously reported, on the 19th of February, 1763, that they had found them to be just. A resolution was thereupon unanimously passed, fixing the period of his agency at six years, and granting him five hundred pounds sterling a year, and the thanks of the house, to be pronounced by the speaker, " to Benjamin Franklin, for his many services, not only to the province of Pennsylvania, but to America in general, during his