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curiofities. On our return, at the request of the company, whose curiosity Wygate had excited, I undretled myself and leaped into the river. I Awam from near Chelsea the whole way to Blackfriars Bridge, exhibiting during my course, a variety of feats of activity and address, both upon the surface of the water, as well as under it. This sight occasioned much astonishment and pleasure to those to whom it was new. In my youth I took great delight in this exercise. I knew, and could execute, all the evolutions and pofitions of Thevenot; and I aided to them some of my owu 'invention, in which I endeavoured to unite gracefulness and utility. I took a pleasure in displaying them all on this occasion, and was highly flattered with the admiration they excited.

Wygate, besides his being desirous of perfecting hin self in this art, was the more attached to me from their being, in other respects, a conformity in our tastes and studies. He at length proposed to me to make the tour of Europe with him, maintaining ourselves at the same time by working at our profession. I was on the point of consenting, when I mentioned it to my friend Denham, with whom I was glad to pass an hour whenever I had leisure. He diffuaded me from the project, and advised me to return to Philadelphia, which he was about to do himself. I must relate in this place a trait of this worthy man's character.

He had formerly been in business at Bristol, but failing, he compounded with his creditors, and departed for America, where, by affiduous application as a merchant, he acquired in a few years a very considerable fortune. Returning to England in the fame vessel with myself, as I have related

above, he invited all his old creditors to a feast. When assembled, he thanked them for the readiness with which they had received his small compofition; and, while they expected nothing more than a fimple entertainment, each found under his plate when it came to be removed, a draft upon a banker for the residue of his debt with interest.

He told me it was his intention to carry back with him to Philadelphia a great quantity of goods, in order to open a store; and he offered to take me with him in the capacity of clerk, to keep his books, in which he would instruct me, copy letters, and superintend the store. He added, that, as soon as I had acquired a knowledge of mercantile transactions, he would improve my situation, by sending me with a cargo of corn and flour to the American islands, and by procuring me other lucrative commislions ; so that, with good management and economy, I might in time begin business with advantage for myself.

I relished these proposals. London began to tire me; the agreeable hours I had passed at Philadelphia presented themselves to my mind, and I wished to see them revive. I consequently engagcdmyself to Mr. Denham, at a salary of fifty pounds a year. This was indeed less than I earned as a compositor, but then I had a fairer much prospect. I took leave, therefore, as I believed forever, of printing, and gave myself up entirely to my new occupation, spending all my time either in going from house to house with Mr. Denham to purchase goods, or in packing them up, or in expediting the workmen, &c. &c. When every thing however was on board, I had at last a few days leisure.

During this interval, I was one day fent for by

a gentleman, whom I knew only by name. It was Sir William Wyndham. I went to his house. He had by some means heard of my performances be. tween Chelsea and Blackfriars, and that I had caught the art of swimming to Wygate and another young man in the course of a few hours. His two funs were on the point of setting out on their travels; he was delirous that they should previ. ously learn to swim, and offered me a very liberal reward if I would undertake to instruct them. They were not yet arrived in town, and the stay I hould make myself was uncertain; I could not therefore accept his proposal. I was led however to fuppose from this incident, that if I had wilhed to remain in London and open a swimming-school, I hould perhaps have gained a great deal of money. This idea struck me fo forcibly, that, had the offer been made fooner, I should have dismifled the thought of returning as yet to America. Some years after, you and I had a more important bufinefs to settle with one of the fons of Sir William Wyndham, then Lord Egremunt. But let us not anticipate events.

I thus pafled about eighteen months in London, working almost without intermission at my trade, avoiding all expence on my own account, except going now and then to the play and purchasing a few books. But my friend Ralph kept me poor. He owed me about twenty-seven pounds, which was so much money lost; and when considered as taken from my little savings, was a very great sum. I had notwithstanding this a regard for him, as he poffesfed many amiable qualities. But "hough I had done nothing for mysčitin point of fortune', I had increased iny stock of knowledge, either by

the many excellent books I had read, or the conversation of learned and literary persons with whom I was acquainted.

We failed from Gravesend the 23d of July 1726. For the incidents of my voyage I refer you to my Journal, where you will find all the circumitances minutely related. We landed at Philadelphia on the i1th of the following October, Keith had been deprived of his office of

governor, and was succeeded by Major Gordon. I met him walking in the streets as a private individual. He appeared a little ashamed at feeing me, but passed on without saying any thing,

I should have been equally alhamed myself at meeting Miss Read, had not her family, juilly de{pairing of my return after reading my letter, adviled her to give me up, and marry a potter, of the name of Rogers ; to which she consented : but he never made her happy, and the soon separated from him, refusing to cohabit with him, or even bear bis name, on account of a report which prevailed, of his having another wife. His skill in his proteffion had reduced Miss Read's parents ; but be was as bad a subject as he was excellent as a workman. He involved himself in debt, and fled, in the y ar 1727 or 1728, to the West Indies, where he died.

During my absence Keimer had taken a more considerable house, in which he kept a shop, that was well fupplied with paper, and various other articles. He had procured some new types, and a number of workmen ; among whom, however there was not one who was go id for any thing ; and he appeared not to want bufi efs.

M. Denham t ok a warehouse in Water-street. where we exhibited our commodities. 1 applica

myself closely, studied accounts, and became in a short time very expert in trade. We lodged and eat together. He was fincerely attached to me, and acted towards me as if he had been my father. On my side, I respected and loved him. My fituation was happy; but it was a happinels of no long duration.

Early in February 1727, when I entered into my twenty-secord year, we were both taken ill. I was attacked with a pleurisy, which had nearly carried me off; I suffered terribly, and confidered it as all over with me. I felt indeed a sort of difappointment when I found myself likely to recover, and regretted that I had still to experience, fooner or later, the same disagreeable scene again.

I have forgotten what was Mr. Denham's disorder ; but it was a tedious one, and he at last funk under it. He left me a small legacy in his will, as a testimony of his friendship; and I was once more abandoned to myself in ihe wide world, the warehouse being confided to the care of the tettamentary executor, who disinisled me.

My brother-in-law, Holmes, who happened to be at Philadelphia, advised me to return to my former profeflion; and Keimrer offered me a very considerable falary if I would undertake the management of his printing-office, that he might des vote himself entirely to the superintendance of his hop. His wife and relations in L ndon had given me a bad character of him; and I was loath, for the present, to have any concern with him. I endeavoured to get employment as a clerk to a merchant; but not readily finding a fi.uation, I was induced to accept Keimer's proposal,

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