Letters of silence dogood books

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letters of silence dogood books

The Collected Works of Silence Dogood by Benjamin Franklin


Franklin has told in his Autobiography how he wrote an anonymous paper when he was but sixteen years of age and put it in at night under the door of his brothers printing house. The following morning it was commented on in his hearing, and he had the exquisite pleasure of finding that it met with the approbation of the contributors to Couranto, as the New England Courant was then called. In all probability this article was the first of the Dogood Papers, and March, 1722 is therefore the time of Franklins first adventure in literature. Editorial encouragement was promptly given to the unknown author. In the same issue of the newspaper that contained his communication appeared the notice, As the Favour of Mrs. Dogoods Correspondence is acknowledged by the Publisher of this Paper, lest any of her Letters should miscarry, he desires they may be deliverd at his Printing-House, or at the Blue Ball in Union street, and no questions shall be askd of the Bearer. Thus encouraged Franklin continued to write the letters of Mrs. Silence Dogood, at fortnightly intervals, until the series ended with the fourteenth paper, published October 8, 1722.

They were first accredited to Franklin by J. T. Buckingham in 1850 (Specimens of Newspaper Literature, I, 62), and further ascribed to him by James Parton in his Life and Times of Franklin (1864, Vol. I, p. 84). In the first sketch, or draft scheme, of his Autobiography Franklin claims Mrs. Dogoods letters as his own. They have never appeared in any collection of his writings. They are now reprinted from the file of the New England Courant in the library of the Massachusetts Historical Society.

The character of the young Franklin is interestingly revealed in these papers; and it will be seen that his sedulous attention to the language of the Spectator had already formed his literary style, and stamped it with those qualities that have given him a high and enduring place among American writers.
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Benjamin Franklin

Silence Dogood Letters

In at the age of 16, Ben Franklin was working as an apprentice to his older brother, James, a Boston printer. Young Ben Franklin never got anything he wrote published so he wrote 14 letters under the assumed name of a woman, Silence Dogood. He secretly slipped each letter under the door of the print shop of the New England Courant in the cloak of darkness. James decided the letters were definitely suitable for publication. For us today, the letters give a good insight into the time and the man who wrote them.

This essay was written by Benjamin Franklin under the pseudonym Silence Dogood. This is the first appearance of Benjamin Franklin in print, writing under the pseudonym of Silence Dogood, the outspoken widow of a minister. In this essay published in the 26 March-2 April issue of The New-England Courant, the reader learns about Silence Dogood's birth on board a ship sailing to Boston and the dramatic death of her father swept overboard as he was standing on deck celebrating his newborn daughter , the necessity of her apprenticeship to a minister because of the impoverished situation her mother found herself in , and her education and exposure to books during her work for the minister. At the end of the letter Dogood promises to write to the paper again:. See next: Silence Dogood essay 2.

From The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, which waspublished in French in Paris a year after Franklin's death in ; the first English edition appeared in London in
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In his autobiography Franklin failed to name these essays. Joseph T. Dogoods Letters. It may not be improper in the first place to inform your Readers, that I intend once a Fortnight to present them, by the Help of this Paper, with a short Epistle, which I presume will add somewhat to their Entertainment. Thus, was the first Day which I saw, the last that was seen by my Father; and thus was my disconsolate Mother at once made both a Parent and a Widow. Thus I past away the Time with a Mixture of Profit and Pleasure, having no affliction but what was imaginary, and created in my own Fancy; as nothing is more common with us Women, than to be grieving for nothing, when we have nothing else to grieve for. As I would not engross too much of your Paper at once, I will defer the Remainder of my Story until my next Letter; in the mean time desiring your Readers to exercise their Patience, and bear with my Humours now and then, because I shall trouble them but seldom.

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