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Poor Richard's Almanack by Benjamin Franklin
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Poor Richard's Almanack (edition 1980)

by Benjamin Franklin (Author)

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665422,438 (3.97)8
Benjamin Franklin's classic book is full of timeless, thought-provoking insights that are as valuable today as they were over two centuries ago. With more than 700 pithy proverbs, Franklin lays out the rules everyone should live by and offers advice on such subjects as money, friendship, marriage, ethics, and human nature. They range from the famous "A penny saved is a penny earned" to the lesser-known but equally practical "When the wine enters, out goes the truth." Other truisms like "Fish and visitors stink after three days" combine sharp wit with wisdom. Paul Volcker's new introduction offers a fascinating perspective on Franklin's beloved work.… (more)
Member:jxn
Title:Poor Richard's Almanack
Authors:Benjamin Franklin (Author)
Info:Peter Pauper Press (1980), Edition: Large Edition, 80 pages
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Poor Richard's Almanack by Benjamin Franklin

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Summary: This book is a collection of sayings that Benjamin Franklin, liked and used. The book has no real plot (being a list of sayings.) and is hard to understand. The sayings are from a multitude of people and Benjamin Franklin himself. The sayings themselves range from, "Well done, is twice done" to "Willows are weak, but they bind the Faggot." The sayings are mostly in "old" English, though some of them aren't. Most of the sayings don't make sense to people now, but they most likely had great meaning back then. There is not much to put as a summary except, that this is a book of sayings from Benjamin Franklin and other people that were made into a book.

Opinion: Poor Richard's Almanack is interesting to say the least. The quotes from the book don't make sense most of the time and it would help if they put a more modern saying after it so it would make more sense. Though I don't think they did that, just because they wanted to preserve the book in it's original form. Like I said the sayings are hard to decipher and even though some of them made sense others did not. I would recommend this book, because it is quite interesting to read. For this I give it four stars. ( )
  AbagailC.G1 | Oct 23, 2018 |
Benjamin Franklin, under the nom de plume of Richard Saunders, wrote his Poor Richard's Almanacks as a means of dispensing wisdom to readers in addition to the normal advice found in such books. This volume from the International Collectors Library, collects the almanacks from 1733 to 1758. This will appeal to those interested in colonial American history and should be read as a companion volume to Franklin's own autobiography. ( )
  DarthDeverell | Jul 3, 2016 |
Wow! Simply wow! Where to begin? Well, to start, Poor Richard is reputedly the first hoax ever pulled over the eyes of a given public. I wonder how long it took for Mr. Saunders to be unmasked as the one and only Benjamin Franklin, the founding father who was so high and balls deep in so many prostitutes that he forgot to be president! All the material of all the Almanacs was printed over a 25-year period from 1732-1758. Probably more for lack of competition than anything else that makes these publications the most important pre-Revolutionary literature produced in the States.

Again, the question comes up, where to begin? Haven't I already begun? Balls! The almanacs (or to spell them more awesomely Almanacks) all follow a basic structure, although the edition I have leaves out the non-pertinent to now information that also forgoes Franklin's classic cleverness. First off, usually, Richard Saunders addresses himself to his audience in an amusing letter which unfolds as a sort of tale and eulogy over his friend's death over the years. Then you have the months which almost always start with 6 or 8 lines of verse followed by a number of aphorisms numbering 1-4. Then, I suppose when the matter tickles his fancy, he puts perhaps a little anecdote and/or some more lines of verse perhaps elucidating further on the anecdote.

He does this for all 12 months of each year without fail. Then, if he's so inclined he includes a coda featuring verse or prose on a given topic addressing problems that strike him, especially on matters regarding the courts (which sound like even then were problematic). The entirety of the book runs in this way as a sort of crash-course in wisdom the likes of which would be rarely repeated. He admits his sayings are often as much gleanings as yarns that he perhaps fashioned himself but that's no matter. The value of them is more often than not unquestionable.

Truth be told I'd rather not give away any of the book as it is all the highest of wheat reaped from the fields. I will however talk a bit on the Autobiography which you will remember I didn't score as well at the time. Now that I've read this as compared with that I regret my original score of the book and will be bumping that one up at least a notch or two retrospectively. I had thought that perhaps the Autobiography had pulled too much from the almanacs. Boy was I ever wrong on that count. And now that I understand the folly of my past beliefs I now regard the autobiography as what it more should be regarded as: an unfinished masterpiece.

Benjamin Franklin's prodigious talents have absolutely stood the test of time, such that his contributions stand as impressive even in this day and age, which usually is marked by insouciance about such things. No matter. I compare Franklin to Da Vinci in a way, for he was a true renaissance man well after the actual time period. ( )
  Salmondaze | May 26, 2016 |
An almanac was used by farmers and usually contained a monthly calendar, heavenly body movements, and other useful information. Benjamin Franklin began writing one over a 25 year period claiming a Richard Saunders wrote the advice given. Poor Richard is how he began much of the advice, thus it's name. He speaks on taxes, finances, business enterprise, Native Americans, equal rights for women, health, sleep, laziness, and death. Interesting advice with some relevance today and some advice that is much dated due to when it was written. ( )
  vibrantminds | Nov 17, 2010 |
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