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A page about human anatomy in Poor Richard's Almanac
A page about human anatomy in Poor Richard's Almanac

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Benjamin Franklin, the Writer

An almanac is a reference book for everyday life. It's filled with information like calendars and weather forecasts. Almanacs have been around for centuries and became especially widespread after printing was invented. Before the Internet, television, and radio, many people would buy an almanac every year so they could look up things like holidays and the moon cycles.

Franklin knew lots of things about lots of things, so in 1732 he decided to write his own almanac. He called it Poor Richard's Almanac. The "author" was Richard Saunders, but it was really Franklin using another pseudonym.

Poor Richard presented himself as a slightly dull, but often funny, country fellow who believed in hard work and simple living. Many of Franklin's most famous quotes are from Poor Richard's, such as "haste makes waste" and "early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise."

Poor Richard's was an immediate success. Franklin published one each year for the next 26 years and sold almost 10,000 copies every year. But that wasn't all Franklin wrote.

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