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Benjamin Franklin plaque

Benjamin Franklin House

36 Craven Street

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A centre for the Enlightenment
Benjamin Franklin House

Benjamin Franklin lived in London from 1757 to 1775. In that time he pursued his scientific investigations and made more inventions.

Front of Benjamin Franklin HouseFranklin is famous for flying a kite into a thunderstorm to show that lightning is made of flashes of electricity. His work on science while in London included:
~ meetings with Priestley (who discovered oxygen),
~ investigating ocean currents including the gulf stream,
~ demonstrating how oil really does smooth troubled water.
Inventions made by Franklin while in London include:
~ bifocal spectacles,
~ an energy-saving stove,
~ a better lightning conductor (for St Paul's Cathedral),
~ the glass armonica (for which Mozart, Bach and Beethoven composed)

Submitted by: Andrew Hunt, 22 January 2007

Find out more about Benjamin Franklin's scientific work in London - also find the times when you can make a visit to the house where he lived.
Find out about two of Franklin's famous inventions: the lightning conductor and glass armonica.

See also: Electricity History of science

Project sponsors:

City sponsors:
ASE London Region
Nuffiled Curriculum Centre