"Keep Thy Shop And Thy Shop Will Keep Thee"

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Last Updated on June 29, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 124

Context: Touchstone, a good-hearted, kindly, worthy goldsmith, discovers his profligate apprentice Quicksilver about to sneak out to join his loose companions. Touchstone, who has arrived at his fortune by hard work and honest means, lectures his apprentice, using the proverb that Benjamin Franklin was later to make famous through the mouth of Poor Richard:

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. . . Did I gain my wealthy by ordinaries? no! by exchanging of gold? no! by keeping of gallants' company? no! I hired me a little shop, bought low, took small gain, kept no debt book, garnished my shop, for want of plate, with good wholesome thrifty sentences: as, "Touchstone, keep thy shop and thy shop will keep thee;" "Light gains makes heavy purses;" "'Tis good to be merry and wise." . . .

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