« AnteriorContinuar »
springs must be neither too strong nor too weak. The hammer ought to be well hardened, and pliable, to go down to the pan with a quick motion.
F In shooting, observe to do it, if possible, with the wind, not against it; and rather sideways, or behind the fowl, than full in their faces. Observe also to choose the most convenient shelter yon can find, as a hedge, bank, tree, or the like. Take care to have your dogs under good command, that they may not dare to stir till you give the word, after discharging your piece: for some ill-taught dogs will, upon only the snap of the cock, presently rush forward, and spoil your sport. If you have not shelter enough, you must creep upon your hands, and knees.
FOX, in zoology, an animal of the dogkind, which much resembles the common dog in form, and is of the size of a spaniel: it is chiefly distinguished by its long and straight tail, with the tip white. See Ca. no.
Fox glove, in botany. See Digitalis.
FRACTION, in arithmetic and algebra, is a part or parts of something considered as ah unit or integer. Fractions are distinguished into vulgar or common, and sexagesimal and decimal. See Sexagesimals and Decimal.
Vulgar fractions, called also simply fractions, consist of two parts or quantities, one wrote over the other, with a line between them. The quantity placed above the line is called the numerator of the fraction; and the quantity placed under the line, the denominator.
Tims, j expresses the quotient of 2, divided by S, and 2 is the numerator, and 3 the denominator. If the numerator of a fraction is equal to its denominator, then the fraction is equal to unity: thus j as 1,
and - or r are likewise equal to unity. If a b
the numerator is greater than the denominator, then the fraction is greater than unit. In both these cases, the fraction is called improper; but if the numerator is less than the denominator, then the fraction is less than unity, and is called proper: thus I, is an improper fraction, but \ or 5 are proper fractions. A mixed quantity is that whereof one part is aa integer, and the other a frac
tion;as3|,*«,ando-f j-. See Algedha. FRACTURE, in surgery, a rupture of a
bone, or a solution of continuity in a bone , when it is crushed or broken by some external cause. See Surgery.
FRXNUM, in anatomy, a term applied to some membranous ligaments of the body.
Frat Mim lingua, the ligament under the tongue, which sometimes ties it down too close to the bottom of the mouth ; and then requires to be incised or divided, in order to give this organ its proper and free motion.
FRAGARIA, in botany, English strataberry, a genus of the Icosandria Polygynia class and order. Natural order of Senticosat. Rosacea?, Jussieu. Essential character: calyx ten-cleft; petals five; receptacle of the seeds ovate, and like a berry. There are three species, and many varieties.
FRAIL, a basket made of rushes, or the like, in which are packed up figs, raisins, &c. It signifies also a certain quantity of raisins, about 75 pounds.
FRAISE, in fortification, a kind of defence, consisting of pointed stakes, six or seven feet long, driven parallel to the horizon into the retrenchments of a camp, a half-moon, or the like, to prevent any approach or scalade.
Praises differ from Palisades chiefly in this, that the latter stand perpendicular to the horizon, and the former jet out parallel to the horizon, or nearly so, being usually made a little sloping, or with the points hanging down. I'raises are chiefly used in retrenchments and other works thrown up of earth; sometimes they are found under the parapet of a rampart, serving instead of the cordon of stone used in stone-works.
FRANK, or France, meaning literally free from charges and impositions, or exempt from public taxes, has various significations in our ancient customs.
Frank, or France, an ancient coin, either of gold or silver, struck and current in France. The value of the gold frank was somewhat more than that of the gold crown; the silver frank was a third of the gold one: this coin is long out of use, though the term is still retained as the name of it money of account, in which sense it is equivalent to the livre, or twenty sols.
FRANKENIA, in botany, so named in honour of John Frankenius, professor of botany at Upsala, a genus of the Hcxandria Monogynia class and order. Natural order of Calycanthems. Caryophylle, Jus* sieu. Essential character: calyx five-cleft, funnel-form ; petals five ; stigma six-parted; capsule one-celled, three-valved. Thereare three species.
FRANKFORT black, is the chief ingredient in the copper-plate printer's ink; it is made of the lees of wine, burnt, washed in water, and ground in mills, together with ivory, or the stones from peaches and other fruit. The best is that made at Frankfort on the Mayn, though a great deal is made at Mentz, Strasburg, and different parts of France.
FRANKINCENSE, is a gummy resin, the product of the juniperus lycia, consisting of equal parts of gum and resin; the first is soluble in water, the other in alcohol. It is brought from Turkey and the East Indies, but is principally collected in Arabia. It usually comes to us in drops, but in a very impure state, a hundred pounds not yielding more than from forty to fifty pounds of pure frankincense.
FRANKLIN (dr. Benjamin), in biography, one of the most celebrated philosophers and politicians of the eighteenth century, was born in Boston, in North America, in the year 1706, being the youngest of thirteen children. His father was a tallow-chandler in Boston, and young Franklin was taken away from school at ten years of age, to assist him in his business. In this situation he continued two years, but disliking this occupation, he was bound apprentice to an elder brother, who was then a printer in Boston, but had learned that business in London, and who, in the year 1721, began to print a newspaper, being the second ever published in America; the copies of which our author was •ent to distribute after having assisted in composing and printing it. Upon this occasion our young philosopher enjoyed the secret and singular pleasure of being the much-admired author of many essays in this paper, a circumstance which he had the address to keep a secret even from his brother himself, and this when he was only fifteen years of age. The frequent ill usage from his brother induced young Franklin to quit his service, which he did at the age of seventeen, and went to New York; but not meeting employment here, he went forward to Philadelphia, where he worked with a printer a short time; after which, at the instance of Sir William Keith, governor of the province, he returned to Boston to solicit pecuniary assistance from his father to set up a printing-house for himself at Philadelphia, upon the promise of great
encouragement from Sir William, &e. His father thought fit, however, to refuse such aid, alleging that he was yet too young (eighteen years old) to be entrusted with such a concern, and our author again returned to Philadelphia without it. Upon this Sir William said he would advance the sum himself, and our young philosopher should go to England and purchase all the types and materials himself, for which purpose he would give him letters of credit. He could never, however, get these letters, yet, by dint of fair promises of their being sent on board the ship after him, he sailed for England, expecting these letters of credit were in the governor's packet, which he was to receive upon its being opened. In this he was cruelly deceived, and thus he was sent to London without money, friends, or credit, at the age of eighteen.
He soon found employment, however, as if journeyman printer, first at Mr. Palmer's, and afterwards with Mr. Watts, with whom he worked a considerable time, and by whom he was greatly esteemed, being also treated with such kindness that it was always most gratefully r cinembercd by our philosopher.
After a stay of eighteen months in London, he returned to Philadelphia, viz. in 1726, along with a merchant of that town, as his clerk, on a salary of fifty pounds a year. But his master dying a year after, he again engaged to direct the printing business of the same person with whom he had worked before. After continuing with him the best part of a year, our philosopher, in partnership with another young man, at length set up a printing-house himself.
Before this time young Franklin had gradually associated a number of persons like himself, of a rational and philosophical turn of mind, and formed them into a club or society, to hold meetings to converse and communicate their sentiments together for their mutual improvement in all kinds of useful knowledge, which was in ranch repute for many years afterwards. Among many other useful regulations, they agreed to bring such books as they had into one place, to form a common library. This resource being found defective, at Franklin's persuasion, they resolved to contribute a small sum monthly towards the purchase of books for their use from London. Thus their stock began to increase rapidly, and the inhabitants of Philadelphia, being desirous of having a share in their literary knowledge, proposed that the books should be lent out for paying a small sum for the indulgence. Thus, in a few years, the society became rich, and possessed more books than were, perhaps, to be found in all the other colonies. The collection was advanced into a public library, and the other colonies, sensible of its advantage, began to form similar plans, from whence originated the libraries at Boston, New York, Charlestown, &c.; that of Philadelphia being now scarcely inferior to any in Europe. About 1728, or 1729, young Franklin set up a newspaper, the second in Philadelphia, which proved very profitable, and otherwise useful, as affording an opportunity of making himself known as a political writer, by inserting several of his writings of that kind into it. In addition to his printing-house, he set up a shop to sell books and stationary, and in 1730 he married his wife, who proved very useful in assisting to manage the shop, &c. He afterwards began to' have some leisure, both for reading books and writing them, of which he gave many specimens from time to time. In 1732 he began to publish Poor Richard's Almanack, which was continued for many years. It was always remarkable for the numerous and valuable concise maxims it contained for the economy of human life, all tending to exhort to industry and frugality; and, in the almanack for the last year, all the maxims were collected in an address to the reader, entitled the Way to Wealth. This has been translated into various languages, and inserted in various publications. It has also been printed on a large sheet, proper to be framed and hung up in conspicuous places in all houses, as it very well deserves to be. Mr. Franklin became gradually more known for his political talents, and in the year 1736, he was appointed clerk to the general assembly at Pennsylvania, and was re-elected by succeeding assemblies for several years, till he was chosen representative for the city of Philadelphia; and in 1737 he was appointed post-master to that city. In 1738 he formed the first fire company there, to extinguish and'prevent fires and the burning of houses; an example which was soon followed by other persons and other places. A nd soon after he suggested the plan for an association for insuring houses and ships from losses by fire, which was adopted, and the association continues to this day. In the year 1744, during a war between France and Great Britain, tome French and Indi
ans made inroads upon the frontier inhabitants of the province, who were unprovided for such an attack; the situation of the province v«u at that time truly alarming, being destitute of every means of defence. At this crisis Franklin stepped forth, and proposed to a meeting of the citizens of Philadelphia, a plan of a voluntary association for the defence of the province. —This was approved of, and signed by 1200 persons immediately. Copies of it were circulated through the province, and in a short time the number of signatures amounted to 10,000. Franklin was chosen colonel of the Philadelphia regiment, but he did not think proper to accept of the honour. .
Pursuits of a different nature now occupied the greatest part of his attention for some years. Being always much addicted to the study of natural philosophy, and the discovery of the Leyden experiment in electricity having rendered that science of general curiosity, Mr. Franklin applied himself to it, and soon began to distinguish himself in that way. He engaged in a course of electrical experiments with all the ardour and thirst for discovery which characterized the philosophers of that day. By these he was enabled to make a number of important discoveries, and to propose theories to account for various phenomena, which have been generally adopted, and will probably endure for a long time. His observations he communicated in a series of letters to his friend Mr. Collinson, the first of which is dated March 28, 1747. In these he makes known the power of points in drawing and throwing off the electric matter, which had hitherto escaped the notice of electricians. He also made the discovery of plus and minus, and of positive and negative state of electricity; from whence, in a satisfactory manner, he explained the phenomena of the Leyden phial, first observed by Cuneus, or Mnschenbroech, which had much perplexed philosophers. He shewed that the bottle, when charged, contained no more electricity than before, but that as much was taken from one side as was thrown on the other, and that to discharge it, it was necessary to make a communication between the two sides, by which the equilibrium might be restored, and that then no signs of electricity would remain. He then demonstrated, by experiments, that the electricity did not reside in the coating, as had been supposed, but in or upon the glass itself. After a phial was charged, he removed the coating, and found that upon applying a new coating, the shock might still be received. In the year 1749 he first suggested bis idea of explaining the phenomena of thunder-gusts, and of the aurora borcalb, upon electrical principles. He pointed out many particulars in which lightning and electricity agreed, and he adduced many facts, and reasoning from facts, in support of his positions. In the same year he conceived the bold and grand idea of ascertaining the truth of his doctrine by actually drawing down the forked lightning by means of sharp pointed iron rods, raised in the region of the clouds, from whence he derived his method of securing buildings and ships from lightning. It was not until the summer of 1752 that he was enabled to complete his grand discovery of the electrical kite, which being raised up into the clouds, brought thence the electricity or lightning down to the earth, and M. D'Alehard made the experiment about the same time in France, by following the track which Franklin had before pointed out.
The letters which he sent to Mr. Collinson, it is said, were refused a place among the papers of the Royal Society of London, and Mr. Collinson published them in a separate volume, under the title of New Experiments and Observations on Electricity, made at Philadelphia, in America; which were read with avidity, and soon translated into different languages. His theories were at first opposed by many philosophers, some of them members of the Royal Society of London; but in 1755, when he returned to that city, they voted him the gold medal which is annually given to the person who presents the best paper on some interesting subject. He was also admitted a member of the society, and had the degree of doctor of laws conferred upon him by several universities; but at this time, by reason of the war, which broke out between Great Britain and France, he returned to America, and interested himself in the public affairs of that country. Indeed, he had done this long before, for although philosophy was a principal object in Franklin's pursuit for several years, he did not confine himself to it alone. In the year 1747 he became a member of the General Assembly of Philadelphia. Being a friend to the rights of the people from his infancy, he soon distinguished himselfas a steady opponent to the unjust schemes of the proprietaries. He was soon looked up to as the head of the opposition, and to him have been attributed many of
the spirited replies of the Assembly to the messages of the governors. His influence in the body was very great; this arose not from any superior powers of eloquence, he spoke but seldom, and he was never known to make an elaborate harangue; his speeches often consisted of a single sentence, or it well told story, the moral of which was always obviously to the point. He never attempted the flowery fields of oratory; his manner was plain and mild ; his style in speaking was like that of his writings, simple, unadorned, and remarkably concise. With this plain manner, and his penetrating and solid judgment, he was able to confound the most eloquent and subtle of his adversaries, to confirm the opinions of his friends, and to make converts of the unprejudiced who had opposed him; with a single observation he has rendered of no avail a long and elegant discourse, and determined the fate of a question of importance.
In the year 1749, he proposed the plan of an academy to be erected in the city of Philadelphia as a foundation for prosperity, to erect a seminary of learning more extensive and suitable to future circumstances: and in the beginning of 1750, three of the schools were opened, namely, the Latin and Greek schools, the Mathematical, and the English schools. This foundation soon after gave rise to another more extensive college, incorporated by charter, May t 1755, which still subsists, and in a very flourishing condition. In 1759, he was instrumental in the establishment of the Pennsylvania Hospital, for the cure and relief of indigent invalids, which has proved of the greatest use to that class of persons. Having conducted himself so well as Post-master to Philadelphia, he was, in 1753, appointed Deputy Post-master General to the whole of the British colonies.
The colonies being much exposed in their frontiers to depredations by the Indians and the French; at a meeting of commissioners for several provinces, Mr. Franklin proposed a plan for their general defence, to establish in the colonies a general government, to be administered by a president general, appointed by the crown, and by a grand council, consisting of members chosen by the representatives of the different colonies; a plan which was unanimously agreed to by the commissioners present. The plan, however, had a singular fate: it was disapproved of by the ministry of Great Britain, because it gave too much power to the representatives of the people; and it was regretted by every assembly as giving to the president general, who was to be the representative of the crown, an influence greater than appeared to them proper in a plan of government intended for freemen. Perhaps this rejection, on both sides, is the strongest proof that could be adduced of the excellence of it, as suited to the situation of Great Britain and America at that time. It appears to have steered directly in the middle, between the opposite interests of both. Whether the adoption of this plan would have prevented the separation of America from Great Britain, is a question which might afford much room for speculation.
In the year 1755, General Braddock, with some regiments of regular troops and provincial levies, was sent to dispossess the French of the posts upon which they had seized in the back settlements. After the men were all ready, a difficulty occurred which had nearly prevented the expedition: this was the want of waggons. Franklin now stepped forward, and with the assistance of his son, in a little time, procured 150. After the defeat of Braddock, Franklin introduced into the assembly a bill fur organizing a militia, and had the dexterity to get it passed. In consequence of this act a very respectable militia was formed, and Franklin was appointed colonel of the regiment of Philadelphia, which consisted of 1200 men; in which capacity he acquitted himself with much propriety, and was of singular service; though this militia was soon after disbanded by the English ministry.
In 1757, he was sent to England with a petition to the king and council, against the proprietaries who refused to bear any share in the public expenses and assessments, which he got settled to the satisfaction of the state. After the completion of this business, Franklin remained at the court of Great Britain for some time, as agent to the province of Pennsylvania; and also for those of Massachusetts, Maryland, and Georgia. Soon after this he published his Canada pamphlet, in which he pointed out, in a very forcible manner, the advantages that would result from the conquest of this province from the French. An expedition was accordingly planned, and the command given to General Wolfe; the success of which is well known. He now divided his time, indeed, between philosophy and politics, rendering many services to both. Whilst here, he invented the elegant musi
cal instrument called the Arroonica, formed of glasses, played upon by the fingers.
In the summer of 1762, he returned to America; on his passage to which he observed the singular effect produced hy agitation of a vessel containing oil floating on water: the upper surface of the oil remained smooth and undisturbed, whilst the water was agitated with the utmost commotion. On his return he received the thanks of the Assembly of Pennsylvania, which having annually elected him a member in his absence, he again took his seat in this body, and continued a steady defender of the liberties of the people.
In 1764, by the intrigues of the proprietaries, Franklin lost his seat in the assembly, which he had possessed for 14 years; but he was immediately appointed provincial agent to England, for which country he presently set out.
In 1766, he was examined before the parliament relative to the stamp act; which was soon after repealed. The same year he made a journey into Holland and Germany, and another into France; being every where received with the greatest respect by the literati of all nations.
In 1773, he attracted the public attention by a letter on the duel between Mr. Whately and Mr. Temple, concerning the publication of Governor Hutchinson's letters, declaring that he was the person who had discovered those letters. On the 99th of January, next year, he was examined before the privy council, on a petition he had presented long before, as agent for Massachusetts Bay, against Mr. Hutchinson; but this petition being disagreeable to the ministry, it was precipitately rejected, and Dr. Franklin was soon after removed from his office of Post-master General for America. Finding now all efforts to restore harmony between Great Britain and her colonies useless, he returned to America in 1775, just after the rommencement of hostilities. Being named one of the delegates of the Continental Congress, he had a principal share in bringing about the revolution and declaration of independency on the part of the colonies.
In 1776, he was deputed by Congress to Canada, to negociate with the people of that country, and to persuade them to throw off the British yoke; but the Canadians had been so much disgusted with the hot zeal of the New Englanders, who had burnt some of their chapels, that they re