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Young Man Bache: Notes for a Sketch


Far from being a humorless radical, as he is often depicted, Benjamin Franklin Bache, editor of the Philadelphia General Advertiser: Aurora from 1790 until his death in 1798, was a romantic, erotic young man concerned with loving and being loved. He was also a gentleman, like his grandfather Benjamin Franklin. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Bache had a reading knowledge of Latin. He valued a good education and was interested in presenting arguments in a logical, cohesive manner, rather than in composing partisan, rambling tirades. A complex individual, he was exemplary of the Late Enlightenment, combining its Romantic and rationalist features. More creative and serious-minded than most scholars who write about him comprehend, he was also a loving suitor, husband, and father.

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