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Life of Benjamin Franklin

Can you guess these facts about the life of the great Ben Franklin?
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: January 1, 2019
First submittedJanuary 1, 2019
Times taken3,188
Rating4.15
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Year
Hint
Answer
...
Franklin's father was a chandler, a person who makes these
Candles
1706
Ben Franklin was born in this city
Boston
1718
He starts his apprenticeship in this profession
Printing
1723
At age 17, he moves to this city
Philadelphia
1731
He joins this organization of free thinkers
Freemasons
1732
He publishes the first edition of this yearly almanac
Poor Richard’s
Almanack
1749
Franklin founds this University
University of
Pennsylvania
1750
He first suffers from this disease, common among the well-fed
Gout
1750
Using a kite, he performs an experiment meant to capture electricity from this
Lightning
1750s - 1770s
Franklin spends most of this time in this city
London
1775
He is elected to serve as a delegate at this meeting of the thirteen colonies
Continental
Congress
1775
He becomes the first person to hold this office with the U.S. government,
supervising mail delivery
Postmaster
General
1778
He negotiates a treaty of alliance between the U.S. and this country
France
1784
He invents this type of eyewear
Bifocals
1787
At age 81, he is the oldest person to sign this document
U.S. Constitution
1790
He submits a petition to the U.S. Congress to abolish this
Slavery
+5
level 77
Jan 1, 2019
This is the first time I've seen Freemasonry described as an "organization of free thinkers". Wikipedia says "most Grand Lodges [of Freemasonry] require the candidate to declare a belief in a Supreme Being". It also says that "freethinking is most closely linked with . . . atheism [and] agnosticism."
+2
level ∞
Jan 1, 2019
Certainly many freemasons in Franklin's time were deists who did not conform to the religious orthodoxies of the era. I don't know much about the current state of freemasonry.
+6
level 74
Jan 1, 2019
Currently it is held back from world domination only by Nicholas Cage.
+3
level 76
Jan 6, 2019
I agree with cpgatbyu. It's just not correct. While I might describe the freemasons in my acquaintance as "free thinkers," I would never describe Freemasonry as an "organization of free thinkers" (nor would they call it that themselves I'm pretty certain!).

For the purposes of the clue it would be better described as a community-oriented fraternity, or you could just keep it simple with "He joins this fraternity."
+2
level 77
Jan 17, 2019
When Franklin was a young man deists were the free-thinking atheists of their day. A deist believed in a vague amorphous supreme being, an "absent watchmaker" who may have set the universe in motion but obviously no longer was present or intervening in human affairs, primarily because this was pre-Darwin and pre-Hawking and there had not been theories proposed in their world for the origins of life and the universe that did not involve a god. They all thought Christianity and the Bible were bunk, that "god" if there was one was not watching us, and were generally strongly opposed to organized religion and the things it led to (decades-long wars in Europe, the Inquisition in Spain, the reign of "Bloody Mary," etc).

I don't know enough about Freemasons of the time to say if they were primarily deistic but if Franklin was a member they may well have been and it's entirely likely that they, just like all people religions and things, have changed a lot since the 18th century.
+1
level 84
Jan 1, 2019
I believe the alleged flying of a kite in a storm took place in 1752, not 1750.
+5
level 79
Jan 17, 2019
Apparently a chandler does not make chandeliers.
+2
level 76
Jan 17, 2019
No, but the words are related. Chandeliers formerly used candles for light. Close, but no banana.
+1
level 47
Jan 17, 2019
Found that a bit difficult coming from a non-American
+1
level 68
Dec 2, 2019
I tend to find quizzes about English monarchs and French cultural institutions quite easy.
+1
level 74
Jan 17, 2019
Ahhh! I tried typesetting instead of printing. Why do I do these things?
+1
level 66
Jan 17, 2019
He was mega awesome, such an inspiration.
+1
level 58
Jan 18, 2019
Aw..I said publishing, not printing :(