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turning it- in, dealing, which, by the time that a young man becomes old,' will amount to a considerable sum of money.
Again: he that sells-.upon credit* asks a price for• what- he sells equivalent to the principal and interest of hismoney for the time he is.to be kept oufcof it; therefore, he.thatibnys upon credit, pays interest for what he buys, and he that pays ready money, might let that money out to .use; so that he that possesses any thing he has bought, pays interest for the use of it.
Yet, in buying goods, it is best to pay ready money, because he that sells upon credit, expects to lose five per cent, by bad debts; therefore he charges on all he. sells- upon, credit; an advance that shall make up that deficiency.
Those, whopay for,what■they. buy upon credit, pay their share of'this advance.
He that pays ready money, escapes, or may es,eape,- thafcbo,rgej
A penny sav'd -is two-pence clear,
^pockets. I will acquaint them with the true ffeecpet •of money-catching, the certain way "to <fill empty ipurses, and how to keep them always full. Two simple rules, well observed, will'do the business.
First, let honesty and industry be thy constant companions; and
Secondly, spend one penny less than thy clear gains.
Then shall thy hide-bound pocket soon begin to thrive, and will never again cry with the empty belly-ache; neither will creditors insult thee, nor want oppress, nor hunger bite, nor nakedness freeze thee. The whole hemisphere will shine brighter, and pleasure spring up in every corner of thy heart. Now, therefore, embrace these rules and be happy. Banish the bleak winds of sorrow from thy mind, and live independent. Then shalt thou be a man, and not hide thy face at the approach of the rich, nor suffer the pain of feeling little when the sons of fortune walk at thy right hand; for independency, whether with little or much, is good fortune, and placeth thee on even ground with the proudest of the golden fleece. Oh, then, be wise, and let industry walk with thee in the morning, and attend thee until thou reachest the evening hour for rest. Let honesty be as the breath of thy soul, and never forget to have a penny when all thy expenses are enumerated and paid; then shalt thou reach the point of happiness, and independence shall be thy shield and buckler,
thy helmet and crown; then shall thy soul walk, upright, nor stoop to the silken wretch because he hath riches, nor pocket an abuse because the hand which offers it wears a ring set with diamonds.
THE WAY TO WEALTH, AS CLEARLY SHOWN IN THE PREFACE OF AN OLD PENNSYLVANIA ALMANAC, INTITLED, "POOR RICHARD IMPROVED."'
[Referred to in Memoirs of the Life, Part II.]
I have heard, that nothing gives an author so great pleasure as to find his works respectfully quoted by others. Judge, then, how much I must have been gratified by an incident I am going to relate to you. I stopped my horse lately, where a great number of people were collected at an auction of merchants' goods. The hour of the sale not being come, they were conversing on the badness of the times; and one of the company called to a plain clean old man with
1 The origin and intent of this popular piece is fully explained by Dr. Franklin in the Memoirs of his Life. At the time of its first publication (in 1757) it was read with much avidity and profit by the people of America, and is supposed to have greatly contributed to the formation of that national character they have since exhibited.
white locks, "Pray, Father Abraham, what think you of the times? Will not these heavy taxes quite ruin the country? How shall we ever be able to pay them? What would you advise us to V—• Father Abraham stood up, and replied, "If you would have my advice, I will give it you in short; For a word to the wise is enough, as Poor Richard says." They joined in desiring him to speak his mind, and gathering round him, he proceeded as follows:
"Friends," said he, "the taxes are indeed very heavy, and if those laid on by the government were the only ones we had to pay, we might more easily discharge them; but we have many others, and much more grievous to some of us. We are taxed twice as much by our idleness, three times as much by our pride, and four times as much by our folly; and from these taxes the commissioners cannot ease or deliver us, by allowing an abatement. However, let us hearken to good advice, and something may be done for us; God helps them that help themselves, as Poor Richard says.
"I. It would be thought a hard government that should tax its people one-tenth part of their time, to be employed in its service: but idleness taxes many of us much more; sloth, by bringing on diseases, absolutely shortens life. Sloth, like rust, consumes faster than labor wears; while the used key is always bright, as Poor Richard says. But dost thou love life, then do not squander time, for (hat is the stuff" life is made of, as Poor Richard says. How much more than is necessary do we spend in sleep! forgetting, that The sleeping for catches no poultry, and that there will be sleeping enough in the grave, as Poor Richard says.
"If time be of all things the most precious, wasting time must be, as Poor Richard says, the greatest prodigality; since, as he elsewhere tells us, Lost time is never found again; and what we call time enough, always proves little enough: let us then up and be doing, and doing to the purpose; so by diligence shall we do more with less perplexity. Sloth makes till things difficult, but industry all easy; and he that riseth late must trot all day, and shall scarce overtake his business at night; while laziness travels sp tilowly, that poverty soon overtakes him. Drive thy business, let not that drive thee; and early to bed, and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise, as Poor Richard says.
"So what signifies wishing and hoping for better times? We may make these times better if we bestir ourselves. Industry need not wish, and he that lives upon hopes will die fasting. There are no gains without pains; then help hands, for I have no lands; or, if I have, they are smartly taxed, tit that hath a trade, hath an estate; and he that hath a calling, hath an office of profit and honor, as Poor Richard says; but then the trade must be worked at, and the calling followed, or neither the estate nor the office will enable us to pay our taxes, if