On Choosing a Mistress
“On Choosing a Mistress” is a letter written by Benjamin Franklin to advise one of his close friends about choosing a mistress. In his 1745 letter, Franklin conveys that marriage is the only remedy for lustful inclinations, but if the friend is determined to stray outside marriage, Franklin advices, "you should prefer old Women to young ones." Franklin offers some basic, clean advice: they are more knowledgeable, they are more discreet, they cannot get pregnant, and then he gets down to more lascivious details. This letter was written by Benjamin Franklin long before he became president of the United States of America, Benjamin at the time was in the midst of his life. This document is unique because it was not intended for the public. The document suggests that Franklin still carried a sense of consciousness and morality, unlike what his critics say. The letter shows that Franklin was undoubtedly a really intelligent person with a sharp way of thinking.
Franklin puts every prospect into effect in this letter; this explains why he was successful in life. The significance of this document comes in the fact that it is a personal letter rather than a document published for the public. This is extremely important in analyzing Benjamin Franklin’s personality accurately. Documents that are made for the public usually are written based upon what is accepted by the society, they tend to not include anything that may affect the writers’ reputation. It is clear that the society at the time in which the letter was written is different from today’s society in many ways. American society at the time was much more conservative than it is today. Sexual relationships outside of marriage were considered to be immoral and were shunned by the society. Franklin is wary about not having a person to make the mistake of being found of having an illegal relation or begetting an illegitimate child. The former point may a result of his own experience with his...
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