Benjamin Franklin’s 13 Virtues

I recently blogged about George Washington’s 110 Rules of Civility.

Another recommendation by the Million Dollar Habits book is the 12 virtues of Benjamin Franklin.

According to, which the following virtues are copied from, “his (Franklin’s) initial list was of 12 virtues, but then a Quaker friend pointed out that he might want to consider adding ‘humility.’ Conveniently this 13th virtue allowed for the second step, where Franklin concentrated on one virtue per week. Given 52 weeks, this meant that four (4) times a year each virtue became the center of attention.”

He even had a handdrawn spreadsheet below to mark down whether he had practised the virtue each day.


Here are the 13 virtues:

1.TEMPERANCE. Eat not to dullness; drink not to elevation.

2.SILENCE. Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself; avoid trifling conversation.

3.ORDER. Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time.

4.RESOLUTION. Resolve to perform what you ought; perform without fail what you resolve.

5.FRUGALITY. Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.

6.INDUSTRY. Lose no time; be always employ’d in something useful; cut off all unnecessary actions.

7.SINCERITY. Use no hurtful deceit; think innocently and justly, and, if you speak, speak accordingly.

8.JUSTICE. Wrong none by doing injuries, or omitting the benefits that are your duty.

9.MODERATION. Avoid extremes; forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.

10.CLEANLINESS. Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes, or habitation.

11.TRANQUILLITY. Be not disturbed at trifles, or at accidents common or unavoidable.

12.CHASTITY. Rarely use venery but for health or offspring, never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another’s peace or reputation.

13.HUMILITY. Imitate Jesus and Socrates.”

Featured photo by Quotefancy