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The Ingenious Dr. Franklin, an outstanding collection of Benjamin Franklin's scientific correspondence, has long been unavailable yet deserves a place beside his Autobiography as essential reading for everyone interested in history, wit, and invention. Portioned into three sections, "Practical Schemes and Suggestions," "Diverse Experiments and Observations," and "Scientific Deductions and Conjectures," these letters discuss an extraordinary range of topics, including the art of procuring pleasant dreams, choosing eye glasses, the first human flight, the character of clouds, the behavior of oil and water, smallpox and cancer, the cause of colds, charting the Gulf Stream, and prehistoric animals of the Ohio. Culled from ponderous volumes of collected works or private collections, these engaging and unabridged letters were assembled to allow readers to discover for themselves Benjamin Franklin's vigorous personality, his humanity, and his penetrating intelligence.
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