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On Franklin’s Ingratitude

To the Printer of the Public Advertiser

Sir Your Correspondent Brittanicus inveighs violently against Dr: Franklin for his Ingratitude to the Ministry of this Nation, who have conferred upon him so many Favours. They gave him the Post Office of America; they made his Son a Governor; and they offer’d him a Post of five hundred a Year in the Salt Office, if he would relinquish the Interests of his Countrey; but he has had the Wickedness to continue true to it, and is as much an American as ever. As it is a settled Point in Government here, that every Man has his Price, ’tis plain they are Bunglers in their Business, and have not given him enough. Their Master has as much reason to be angry with them as Rodrigue in the Play, with his Apothecary for not effectually poisoning Pandolpho, and they must probably make use of the Apothecary’s Justification; Viz. Scene 4th Rodrigue and Fell the Apothecary.

Rodrigue. You promised to have this Pandolpho upon his Bier in less than a Week; ‘Tis more than a Month since, and he still walks and stares me in the Face.

Fell. True: and yet I have done my best Endeavours. In various Ways I have given the Miscreant as much Poison as would have kill’d an Elephant. He has swallow’d Dose after Dose; far from hurting him, he seems the better for it. He hath a wonderfully strong Constitution. I find I cannot kill him but by cutting his Throat, and that, as I take it, is not my Business.

Rodrigue. Then it must be mine.

before January 31, 1774