I might in this place attempt to gain thy Favour, by declaring that I write Almanacks with no other View than that of the publick Good; but in this I should not be sincere; and Men are now a days too wise to be deceiv'd by Pretences how specious foever. The plain Truth of the Matter is, I am excessive ppor, and my Wife, good Woman, is, I tell her, excessive proud; she cannot bear, she says, to sit Spinning in her Shift of Tow, while I do nothing but gaze at the Stars and has threatned more than once to burn all my Books and Rattling-Traps (as she calls my Instruments) if I do not make some profitable Use of them for the good of my Family. The Printer has offer'd me some considerable share of the Profits, and I have thus begun to comply with my Dame's desire. Indeed this Motive would have had Force enough to have made me publish an Almanack many Years since, had it not been overpower'd by my Regard for my good Friend and Fellow-Student, Mr. Titan Leeds, whose Interest I was extreamly unwilling to hurt: But this Obstacle (I am far from speaking it with Pleasure) is soon to be removed, since inexorable Death, who was never known to respect Merit, has already prepared the mortal Dart, the fatal Sister has already extended her destroying Shears, and that ingenious Man must soon be taken from us. He dies, by my Calculation made at his Request, on Oct. 17, 1733 3ho. 29m. P.M. at the very instant of the Conjunction of Sol and Mercury; by his own Calculation he will survive till the 26th of the same Month. This small difference between us we have disputed whenever we have met these 9 Years past; but at length he is inclinable to agree with my Judgment; Which of us is most exact, a little Time will now determine. As therefore these Provinces may not longer expect to see any of his Performances after this year, I think my self free to take up the Tas, and request a share of the publick Encouragement; which I am the more apt to hope for on this Account that the Buyer of y Almanack may consider himself not only as Purchasing an useful Utensilf, but as performing an Act of Charity, to his poor.
Friend and Servant R SAUNDERS
XI Mon. January hath xxxi days.
MORE NICE THAN WISE.
Old Batchelor would have a Wife tha's wise,
Fair, rich, and young, a Maiden for his Bed;
Not proud, nor churclish, but of faultless size;
A Country Houswife in the City bre.
He's a nice Fool, and long in vain hath staid;
He should bespeak her, there's none ready made
Never spare the Parson’s wine, nor the Baker's pudding.
Visits shold be short, like a winters day,
Left you're too troublesome hasten away,
A house without woman and Firelight, is like a body without soul or sprite.
Kings and bears often worry their keepers.
XII Mon. February hath xxviii days.
N.N. of B---s County, pray don’t be angry with Poor Richard.
Each Age of Men new Fashions doth invent;
Things which are old, young Men do not esteem:
What pleas'd our Fathers, doth not us content;
What flourish’d then, we out of fashion deem:
And that's the reason, as I understand,
Why Prodigus did sell his Father's Land.
Light purse, heavy heart.
He's a Fool that makes his Doctor his heir.
Ne'er take a wife till thou hast a house (& a fire) to put her in.
He's gone, and forgot nothing but ta say Farewel to his creditors.
Love well, whip well.
I Mon. March hath xxxi days.
My love and I for Kisses play'd,
She would keep stakes, I was content,
But when I won she would be paid;
This made me ask her what she meant
Quoth she, since you are in this wrangling vein,
Here take your Kisses, give me mine again.
II Mon. April hath xxx days.
Find Katharine to her husband kiss’d these words,
'Mine own sweet Will, how dearly I love thee!
If true (quoth Will) the World no such affords.
And that its true I durst his warrant bel
For ne'er heard I of Woman good or ill,
But always loved best, her own sweet Will.
Beware of meat twice boil'd, & an old foe reconcil’d.
Great Talkers, little Doers.
A rich rogue, is like a fat hog, who never does good til as dead as a log. Relation without friendship, friendship without power, power without will, will witho. effect, effect without profit, & profit without vertue, are not worth a farta.
III Mon. May hath xxxi days.
Mirth pleaseth some, to others tis offence,
Some commend plain cooceit, some profound sense;
Some wish a witty Jest, some dislike that, what,
And most would have themselves they know not
Then he that would please all, and himself too,
Takes more in hand than he is like to do.
Eat ta live, and not live to eat
March windy, and April rainy, makas May the pleasantest month of any.
The favour of the Great is no inheritance.
Fools make feasts and wise men eat 'em.
Beware of the young Doctor & the old Barber.
He has chang'd his one ey'd horse for a blind one.
The poor have little, beggars none,
The rich too much, enough not one.
IV Mon. June hath xxx days.
Observe the daily circle of the sun,
And the short year of each revolving moon:
By then thou shalt foresee the following day,
Nor shall a starry night thy hopes betray.
When first the moon appears, if then she shrouds,
Her silver crescent, tip’d with fable clouds,
Conclude she bodes a tempest on the main,
And brews for fields impetuous floods of rain.
After 3 days, men grow weary, of a wench, a guest & weather rainy.
To lengthen thy Life, lessen thy Meals.
The proof of gold is fire, the proof of woman, gold;
The proof of man, a woman.
After feasts made, the maker scratches his head.