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The Harvard Classics - Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, Journal of John Woolman, Fruits of Solitude

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Contents: Benjamin Franklin, His Autobiography; The Journal of John Woolman; Some Fruits of Solitude, in Reflections and Maxims, Part I; More Fruits of Solitude, being the Second Part of Reflections and Maxims.


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Contents: Benjamin Franklin, His Autobiography; The Journal of John Woolman; Some Fruits of Solitude, in Reflections and Maxims, Part I; More Fruits of Solitude, being the Second Part of Reflections and Maxims.

30 review for The Harvard Classics - Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, Journal of John Woolman, Fruits of Solitude

  1. 5 out of 5

    Joel Everett

    Wonderful collection of: Benjamin Franklin's Autobiography, the Journal of John Woolman, and William Penn's Fruits of Solitude I & II. I especially enjoyed learning about John Woolman and his advocacy for the abolition of slavery pre-1776; he died in 1772. Wonderful collection of: Benjamin Franklin's Autobiography, the Journal of John Woolman, and William Penn's Fruits of Solitude I & II. I especially enjoyed learning about John Woolman and his advocacy for the abolition of slavery pre-1776; he died in 1772.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Terrance

    Benjamin Franklin autobiography was interesting. John Woolman took a long time to get through. It is a detailed, but dry, journal. William Penn was good.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Peter Talbot

    Three needful bits of text for any educated person. Franklin's Autobiography is much lauded but seldom read. I found it strange, disingenuous at times and self-congratulatory but also quite odd. More is concealed than revealed, but interest there is throughout. It ends where my real interest in Franklin abroad and after the Treaty begins. John Woolman's Journal is an under-rated and remarkable construct.: A memoir and a record of piety from a Quaker consumed by thought of his own impiety, but in Three needful bits of text for any educated person. Franklin's Autobiography is much lauded but seldom read. I found it strange, disingenuous at times and self-congratulatory but also quite odd. More is concealed than revealed, but interest there is throughout. It ends where my real interest in Franklin abroad and after the Treaty begins. John Woolman's Journal is an under-rated and remarkable construct.: A memoir and a record of piety from a Quaker consumed by thought of his own impiety, but instructive of a mind set early toward the abolition of slavery, the rejection of "superfluities" in service to the plain life of the Quaker, etc. Again, a must read, more compelling because much of Woolman's testament against pining after luxuries has been written out of the charter of American "greed is good" spurious ethics. William Penn's Aphorisms are the most bizarre of the selections. Written 100 years before the others, they are more of the age of the Glorious Revolution than the age of Revolution and Enlightenment. As the founder of the "Proprietaries" that Franklin strove against throughout his Pennsylvania career, they also have the taste of the disingenuous. More striking, is how essentially humorous they are in intent. Ethical consideration is not paramount here: this sometime witty saws are often quite deliberately confusing: a searching after pithy sentiment where no sentiment resides.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Marcelo

    O primeiro livro de Franklin é até interessante, mas com ritmo de leitura sempre cortado. O segundo livro é interessante no começo, mas depois vira um relatório de entrada e saída de cidades. Com algumas partes muito chatas durante vários capítulos, porém com pequenas passagens mais interessantes. O terceiro livro é o mais prazeroso de ler. Além disso, pode ser lido diariamente como um livro motivacional ou de reflexão.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ixby Wuff

    Contents: Benjamin Franklin, His Autobiography; The Journal of John Woolman; Some Fruits of Solitude, in Reflections and Maxims, Part I; More Fruits of Solitude, being the Second Part of Reflections and Maxims.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Poiema

    I didn't intend to read this book. It was something I ordered for my son to read when school starts again in the fall. But as I thumbed through it, I found every random thread I perused to be enthralling. I'm not sorry that I went back to the beginning and gave it the attention it deserved. If I had to compose one quintessential description of Benjamin Franklin's life I would call him a "wisdom seeker". He could glean wisdom from old Quaker women, from books, from conversations,from drunkards, ev I didn't intend to read this book. It was something I ordered for my son to read when school starts again in the fall. But as I thumbed through it, I found every random thread I perused to be enthralling. I'm not sorry that I went back to the beginning and gave it the attention it deserved. If I had to compose one quintessential description of Benjamin Franklin's life I would call him a "wisdom seeker". He could glean wisdom from old Quaker women, from books, from conversations,from drunkards, even from his enemies. He passed some of that wisdom on in his writings, but his greatest strength was that he was able to model it and live it. If he had any fault, it was that he talked too much in his later years. But who could blame him? He was a virtual fountain of rich life experience ranging from swimming (did you know he was an athlete?), writing, business, politics, community service, diplomacy,science, journalism, and even military service. There is nothing boring here. I loved his ideas about thrift, which are amazingly applicable to our time of economic turn down. It was almost a game for him to support himself on the least possible amount, without compromising quality of life. He writes: "Thus I spent about eighteen months in London; most part of the time I work'd hard at my business, and spent but little upon myself except in seeing plays and in books." B.F. could gladly subsist on plain food and simple lodging, but refused to starve his mind and soul by neglecting the living ideas found in books and the arts. His extensive reading made him a brilliant conversationalist so that one can say that providing himself with stimulating "mind food" was the equivalent of investing in himself. His ideas on religion were disappointing to me; he rejected the divine inspiration of scripture but held to the tenets therein that he found worthy in his own estimation. As a Christian, I believe scripture should judge the thoughts of man and Franklin had it completely opposite~ he judged scripture with his intellect. But that is simply an evidence that he was a man of his times. The 19th century was the dawn of a new era where science would reign. Franklin, of course, could also be labeled a scientist as a result of his experiments on electricity. I can't wait to discuss this book with my son. There are many, many life lessons here for a young man, yet he is not "preachy". Franklin does not simply catalogue his successes, but is also honest about his mistakes, which he calls "errata". He had the ability to learn from the mistakes of others, too, recognizing their flaws without a trace of malice. This book has great historical value as it covers the years and events that led up to the Revolutionary War. Because he made so many trips to Britain during this time, one also picks up the perspective of the Tories in his writing. Whether you are looking for a character study, a historical reading, or just an engaging story~~this book fits the criteria of all of these. I can't imagine why I was never led to this book in my younger years, but I am going to make sure all of my children read it.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mo

    I think this book (I only read the Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin) should be required reading for all of today's youth. Ben Franklin is a truly self made man, and this book accounts for most of how he got there. I think anyone who comes from a home where success is not important should read this. I love how he decides to save money, and I really love his cautionary tales of all his promising young friends and their downfalls; I think that part is mind blowing. The language in this book can b I think this book (I only read the Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin) should be required reading for all of today's youth. Ben Franklin is a truly self made man, and this book accounts for most of how he got there. I think anyone who comes from a home where success is not important should read this. I love how he decides to save money, and I really love his cautionary tales of all his promising young friends and their downfalls; I think that part is mind blowing. The language in this book can be quite boring and a little challenging to read at times, but when he is really getting into something I found it very exciting. To be fair... these parts do not happen as often as I would have liked. Despite that, the story itself is a great read for anyone who would like to be self made and not have things handed to them. Well done, Mr. Franklin. I was inspired to read this for two reasons. Firstly, while reading Homer's the Iliad and the Odyssey, Benjamin Franklin was often the person compared to the most by the group of readers I read with. I needed to know why. I'll need to think of why he was mentioned so often aside from him being clever and strong. I am sure in time, I could see more of a connection, but I haven't thought about that much since I only just finished reading the book 15 minutes ago. Secondly, I recently watched John Adams on HBO, and I was very interested in learning more about this clever old fella. So much about this story still rings true today. For example, I recently read When I grown up (Benjamin Franklin) from Scholastic with 2 of my kids aged 7 and 5, and we learned Mr. Franklin's son, Franky, died of smallpocs. He was 4, and I was able to tell my kids what vaccines are and why they are important. Being the fact that they are children, they do not like shots. However, learning that Ben Franklins son died from a disease they can not get because they are already vaccinated was very interesting to them. They agreed that the promise of not dying at age 4 from smallpocs is worth the pain of a shot. This was a huge parenting victory as my 5 year old needed boosters this past week. "Remember what happened to Benjamin Franklins son? This is no big deal compared to that." Also, this is important today because a few months ago there was an outbreak of measles in Disney where I was supposed to visit. On page 100, Franklin is quoted in regard to his son dying of smallpocs (bear with me for the length), "I long regretted bitterly, and still regret that I had not given it to him by inoculation. This I mention for the sake of parents who omit that operation, on the supposition that they should never forgive themselves if a child died under it; my example showing that the regret may be the same either way, and that, therefore, the safer should be chosen." I am a Benjamin Franklin fan.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Jimmacc

    Ben Franklin was a pretty interesting man. His autobiography talks about his love of reading and his various business endeavors. It stops after he gets to Europe. Talking about his award for discovering the nature of lightning. John Woolman's autobiography is much more... personal? His travels through the eastern colonies and arguments against slavery are very intriguing. He is often not very clear about the results of his one-on one discussions with his fellow Friends. William Penn's "fruits of Ben Franklin was a pretty interesting man. His autobiography talks about his love of reading and his various business endeavors. It stops after he gets to Europe. Talking about his award for discovering the nature of lightning. John Woolman's autobiography is much more... personal? His travels through the eastern colonies and arguments against slavery are very intriguing. He is often not very clear about the results of his one-on one discussions with his fellow Friends. William Penn's "fruits of solitude" was the quickest read and also very enlightening. His comments on women and marriage appear very modern. I never learned more than his founding of Pennsylvania, and to read here these terse quotes of simple living provide some detail of Avery interesting man. Looking forward to the rest of the shelf.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Jordan Monson

    I could not put Benjamin Franklin's autobiography down. The journal of Woolman was inspiring but a bit tedious. Penn's fruits of solitude were at times enlightening but really just a good mix of the proverbs from the Bible and the current wisdom at the time. I read half of them and moved on. It was keeping me from moving on to the second book in the Harvard classics, which is filled with reading I want to do. I'm normally not one to skim 10% of a book, but when the reading is keeping you from I could not put Benjamin Franklin's autobiography down. The journal of Woolman was inspiring but a bit tedious. Penn's fruits of solitude were at times enlightening but really just a good mix of the proverbs from the Bible and the current wisdom at the time. I read half of them and moved on. It was keeping me from moving on to the second book in the Harvard classics, which is filled with reading I want to do. I'm normally not one to skim 10% of a book, but when the reading is keeping you from other great reading, like the second volume which has Plato and Aurelius, I think it's warranted. I give Franklin's autobiography 5 stars, Woolman's 3.5, and Penn's 3.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Carol

    Great book. Hard to read until you get into the old style of writing but very worth. He was an amazing man!! The copy I had had lots of foot notes so it made understanding who and what he was writing about a lot easier. I also listened to Benjamin Franklin an American Life by Walter Issacson. I'm glad I listened to this one as I was reading the autobiography. It gave a lot of extra info and was able to make conclusions that Franklin himself could not Two highly recommended books. I'd like to mee Great book. Hard to read until you get into the old style of writing but very worth. He was an amazing man!! The copy I had had lots of foot notes so it made understanding who and what he was writing about a lot easier. I also listened to Benjamin Franklin an American Life by Walter Issacson. I'm glad I listened to this one as I was reading the autobiography. It gave a lot of extra info and was able to make conclusions that Franklin himself could not Two highly recommended books. I'd like to meet Benjamin Franklin!!!!!!

  11. 5 out of 5

    Wood

    Loved Benjamin Franklin. Thought John Woolman should have stayed home more with his family more, but I liked learning more about Friends. William Penn was a tough read, but better towards the end. Lesson learned from all of this is one I think (hope!) I already know from my own reading. Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it Loved Benjamin Franklin. Thought John Woolman should have stayed home more with his family more, but I liked learning more about Friends. William Penn was a tough read, but better towards the end. Lesson learned from all of this is one I think (hope!) I already know from my own reading. Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil. Ecclesiastes 12: 13-14

  12. 4 out of 5

    Kelley Green

    This was interesting to read both to get a bit of an idea about early America and to learn more about Benjamin Franklin. It was a little difficult to read since it was written in early American or British terms of speech so a bit unclear at times. It also didn't get into much of the conflict with Britain and what part he had to play in that which would have been interesting.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jill

    I'm still working through this one. Slowly. The print and spacing are tiny - the edition is around 1912. Plus, every time I read this I start having dreams about being in league with the Founding Fathers working to thwart the British...and I'm tired of hiding behind barrels of salted fish, my heart beating as soldiers search the area for my friends.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Bianca Butacu

    I only read the autobiography of Benjamin Franklin. I had known some things about him before I started reading the book, but reading the book, I discovered what a great and intelligent person he was. If there was a single person like him in these days, the world would definitely be different.

  15. 5 out of 5

    David Redden

    The autobiography of Benjamin Franklin was a great read. So much folksy wisdom and good humor. The life of John Woolman provided some insight into early antislavery by this very devout and faithful Quaker. Very inspiring. The bit written by William Penn was not particularly compelling.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kellie

    Benjamin Franklin was an amazing and inspiring man. He was an example of integrity and public virtue that I have yet to see matched. He accomplished so much in his life and this book only covered until 1757.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Tim

    I received a set of the Harvard Classics when I was a teenager, and it currently resides at Waring School. One of the first volumes I read was the one labelled "Woolman, Franklin, Penn" and I read Ben Franklin's first.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Judith Kerr

    So glad I finally read this. Written in easy style. What a life this man led. A great inspiration for all of us.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Jose

    Historically interesting. OK book

  20. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Outstanding selection from one of the brightest minds, ever. I loved every moment of Franklin's memoir.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Carlos Rendon

    Really liked Benjamin Franklin. John Woolman, yuck William Penn, yuck but not as bad as Wollman

  22. 4 out of 5

    Pan

    Enjoyed this wayyyyyyy more than I thought I would...the bio of Franklin is by far the high point. Funny, readable, and inspiring.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Trace

    I really enjoyed Franklin's autobiography; the other two books were not as useful to me, although they did contain a few interesting tidbits...

  24. 5 out of 5

    Alexander Sholtz

    Enjoyed the autobiography of BF, but the diary of John Woolman and the aphorisms of William Penn dragged on a bit

  25. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Finished the Autobiography of Ben Franklin (who'd a thunk there were vegans back then?) and currently working on the Journal of John Woolman.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kimberly

    The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin, The Journal of John Woolman, Fruits of Solitude by William Penn.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Anne Bean

  28. 5 out of 5

    Shadab Salam

  29. 5 out of 5

    Juan pablo

  30. 5 out of 5

    Catherine Shortell

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