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William Penn. (1644–1718). Fruits of Solitude.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.

Part I

A Private Life

370. Private Life is to be preferr’d; the Honor and Gain of publick Posts, bearing no proportion with the Comfort of it. The one is free and quiet, the other servile and noisy.

371. It was a great Answer of the Shunamite Woman, I dwell among my own People.

372. They that live of their own, neither need, nor often list to wear the Livery of the Publick.

373. Their Subsistance is not during Pleasure; nor have they patrons to please or present.

374. If they are not advanced, neither can they be disgraced. And as they know not the Smiles of Majesty, so they feel not the Frowns of Greatness; or the Effects of Envy.

375. If they want the Pleasures of a Court, they also escape the Temptations of it.

376. Private Men, in fine, are so much their own, that paying common Dues, they are Sovereigns of all the rest.