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Enigmatical Prophecies
Poor Richard's Almanac was a yearly almanac that Benjamin Franklin began publishing in 1732. In 1737, five years into the life of the almanac, Franklin included three "enigmatical prophecies" in the almanac. He predicted that:
  • A great storm would cause all the major cities of North America to be under water;
  • A "great number of vessels fully laden will be taken out of the ports… by a Power with which we are not now at war;"
  • and that an "army of 30,000 musketers will land… and sorely annoy the inhabitants."
A year passed and none of the prophecies appeared to come true. But just when Franklin's readers were about to label him a faulty soothsayer, he triumphantly declared that all three prophecies had actually come true. Rain storms had placed every city under water, the power of wind ("a Power with which we are not now at war") had taken fully-laden vessels out of ports, and more than 30,000 musketers (or mosquitoes) had definitely annoyed the inhabitants.
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