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Poor Richard says: and then, when the well is dry, they know the worth of water.'
"Fond pride of dress is sure a very curse,
And again, Pride is as loud a beggar as Want, and a great deal more saucy.' When you have bought one fine thing, you must buy ten more, that your appearance may be all of a piece; but Poor Dick says, 'It is easier to suppress the first desire, than to satisfy all that follow it. And it is as truly folly for the poor to ape the rich, as for the frog to swell, in order to equal the ox.
"Vessels large may venture more,
But little boats should keep near shore."
Pride that dines on vanity, sups on contempt; Pride breakfasted with plenty, dined with poverty, and supped with infamy.'
Think what you do when you run in debt; you give to another power over your liberty. If you cannot pay at the time, you will be ashamed to see your creditor; you will be in fear when you speak to him; you will make poor, pitiful, sneaking excuses and by degrees, come to lose your veracity, and sink into base, downright lying; for, The second vice is lying, the first is running in debt,' as Poor Richard says; and again to the same purpose, Lying rides upon Debt's back; whereas, a free born man, ought not to be ashamed nor afraid to speak to any man living. But poverty often deprives a man of all spirit and virtue. It is hard for an empty bag to stand upright.' What would you think of that prince or of that government, who should issue an edict forbidding you to dress like a gentleman or gentlewoman, on pain of imprisonment or servitude? Would not you say you are free, have a right to dress as you please, and that such an edict would be a breach on your privileges, and such a government tyrannical ?
"IV. This doctrine, my friends, is reason and wisdom: but after all, do not depend too much upon your own industry, and frugality, and prudence, though excellent things; for they may all be blasted without the blessings of Heaven: and, therefore, ask that blessing humbly, and be not uncharitable to those that at present seem to want it, but comfort and help them. Remember, Job suffered, and was afterwards prosperous.
"And now, to conclude, Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other,' as Poor Richard says, and scarce in that; for it is true, 'We may give advice, but we cannot give conduct.' However, remember this,They that will not be counselled cannot be helped ;' and farther, that, If you will not hear Reason, she will surely rap your knuckles,' as Poor Richard says.”