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And let Christ's endless love to thee
your obedience be sincere,
Nor cease, till he can cease to hear.' After professing truly that I had a great esteem and veneration for the pious author, permit me a little to play the commentator and critic on these lines. The meaning of three stories higher seems somewhat obscure. You are to understand, then, that faith, hope, and charity have been called the three steps of Jacob's ladder, reaching from earth to heaven; our author calls them stories, likening religion to a building, and these are the three stories of the Christian edifice. Thus improvement in religion is called building up and edification. Faith is then the ground floor, hope is up one pair of stairs. My dear beloved Jenny, don't delight so much to dwell in those lower rooms, but get as fast as you can into the garret, for in truth the best room in the house is charity. For my part, I wish the house was turned upside down; it is so difficult (when one is fat) to go up stairs; and not only so, but I imagine hope and faith may be more firmly built upon charity, than charity upon faith and hope. I think it the better reading to say
. Raise faith and hope one story higher.' Correct it boldly, and I'll support the alteration; for, when you are up two stories already, if you raise your building three stories higher you will make five in all, which is two more than there should be, you expose your upper rooms more to the winds and storms; and, besides, I am afraid the foundation will hardly bear them, unless indeed you build with such light stuff as straw and stubble, and that, you know, won't stand fire. Again, in
• Kindness of heart by words express,' strike out words, and put in deeds. The world is too full of compli- . ments already. They are the rank growth of every soil, and choke the good plants of benevolence and beneficence; nor do I pretend to be the first in this comparison of words and actions to plants ; you may remember an ancient poet, whose works we have all studied and copied at school long ago,
"A man of words and not of deeds
Is like a garden full of weeds.' It is pity that good works, among some sorts of people, are so little valued, and good words admired in their stead; I mean seemingly pious discourses, instead of humane benevolent actions. Those they almost put out of countenance, by calling morality rotten morality, righteousness ragged righteousness, and even filthy rags.
WILLIAM WIRT*_EXTRACTS FROM LETTERS TO HIS DAUGHTERS.
Benevolence in Trifles. I want to tell you a secret. The way to make yourself pleasing to others is to show that you care for them. The whole world is like the miller of Mansfield, who cared for nobody—no, not hebecause nobody cared for him:'-and the whole world will serve you so, if you give them the same cause. Let every one, therefore, see that you do care for them, by showing them, what Sterne so happily calls, the small, sweet courtesies of life,' those courtesies in which there is no parade; whose voice is too still to tease, and which manifest themselves by tender and affectionate looks, and little, kind acts of attention-giving others the preference in every little enjoyment at the table, in the field, walking, sitting, or standing. This is the spirit that gives to your time of life and to your sex its sweetest charm. It constitutes the sum total of all the witchcraft of woman. Let the world see that your first care is for yourself, and you will spread the solitude of the Upas tree around you, and in the same way-by the emanation of a poison which kills all the kindly juices of affection in its neighborhood. Such a girl may be admired for her understanding and accomplishments, but she will never be beloved. The seeds of love can never grow but under the warm and genial influence of kind feeling and affectionate manners. Vivacity goes a great way in young persons. It calls attention to her who displays it; and, if it then be found associated with a generous sensibility, its execution is irresistible. On the contrary, if it be found in alliance with a cold haughty, selfish beart, it produces no farther effect, except an adverse one.
[Mr. Wirt, ir a touching memoir of this daughter, to whom this letter was addressed, embodies an ideal of a character in which benevolence in trifles had become incorporated into the daily life.]
• Young as she was, she seemed to be the scal and connecting bond of the whole family. Her voice, her smile, her animated, graceful movements, her countless little acts and expressions of kindness and love, those “small, sweet courtesies of life,” which she was 80 continually rendering to all around her, and with such exquisite grace of manner, had made her necessary to the individual happiness of every member of the household. When she was lost to us,
William Wirt, springing from an humble origin, and with only moderate opportunities of school learning, achieved for himself a high place in the profession of law as an eloquent advocate, a conscientious adviser in all questions, and bigb authority in the highest departments of constitutional construction, and, at the same time, occupied a place in society which ordinarily only the largest fortune or inherited position can command.
it was as if the key-stone of the arch had been removed. There was a healthfulness in the glow of her fresh and young affections, which animated the rigid nerves of age, and a pleasantness and beauty in the play of her innocent thoughts and feelings, which could smooth the brow of care, and light up a smile even in the face of sorrow. To me she was not only the companion of my studies, but the sweetener of my toils. The painter, it is said, relieved his aching eyes by looking on a curtain of green. My mind, in its hour of deepest fatigue, required no other refreshment than one glance at my beloved child, as she sat beside me.'
Common Sense. Common sense is a much rarer quality than genius. For one diamond of common sense that you can show me, I will show you twenty merchantable diamonds of genius. If you will reflect a moment on the number of faculties which must necessarily enter into the composition of common sense, you will not be surprised at the fact. For common sense is not, as superficial thinkers are apt to suppose, & mere negative faculty-it is a positive faculty, and one of the highest power. It is this faculty that instructs us when to speak, when to be silent, when to act, when to be still ;-and, moreover, it teaches us what to speak, what to suppress, what to do, and what to forbear. Now, pause a moment to reflect on the number of faculties which must be combined to constitute this common sense; a rapid and profound foresight to calculate the consequences of what is to be said or done, a rapid circumspection and extensive comprehension, so as to be sure of taking in all the circumstances which belong to the case, and missing no figure in this arithmetic of the mind, and an accuracy of decision which must be as quick as lightning, so as not to let the occasion slip. See what a knowledge of life, either by experience or intuition, and what a happy constitutional poise between the passions and the reason, or what a powerful self-command, all enter into the composition of that little, demure, quiet, unadmired, and almost despised thing called common sense. It pretends to no brilliancy, for it possesses none; it has no ostentation, for it has nothing to show that the world admires. The powerful and constant action of the intellect, which makes its nature, is unobserved even by the proprietor; for every thing is done with intuitive ease, with a sort of unconscious felicity. See, then, the quick and piercing sagacity, the prophetic penetration, the wide comprehension and the prompt and accurate judgment which combine to constitute common sense, which is as inestimably valuable as the solar light, and as little thought of.
SCHOOLS AND EDUCATION IN ANCIENT GREECE.
L HOME EDUCATION.* In a comprehensive survey of the education of a people, notice must be taken of the earliest nurture of children, their first occupations, their toys and pastimes, their nurses and attendants, and all the surroundings of home, as well as the more formal instructions of the school and teacher. Throughout Greece, education always held a prominent place in the plans and speculations of statesmen and philosophers—as the matrix in which the state was fashioned. From the germ of individual existence till death closed the modifications which various agencies, formal and informal, could make in the human being the work of education was going on, and to a much larger extent, and to much more minute particulars, than is now generally done in modern society, these various agencies have received attention, with special reference to their educational results.
The health of parents, the diet, exercise, rest, and frame of mind of the mother before the birth of the child, were deemed proper subjects of regulation; and religion was invoked to throw a peculiar sanctity over the birth of a human being. Various systems of infant nurture prevailed—and infanticide, to aid the law of natural selection in preserving only the hardy and well formed for the future citizen, was not only recognized by custoin, but authorized by law.
Birth-Feast t-Name- Nursery. On the fifth day after a child was born into the family, the ceremony called Amphidromia, in which the nurse, with the infant in her arms, made the circle of the hearth, accompanied by all the females of the house the street door being hung with symbols, in case of a boy, consisted in an olive crown; and of a lock of wool, alluding to her future occupations, when it was a girl. Athenæus, apropos of cabbage, which was eaten on this occasion, as well as by ladies ‘in the straw,' as conducing to create milk, quotes a comic description of the Amphidromia from a drama of Ephippos, which proves they were well acquainted with the arts of joviality:
How is it
For the original authorities, see St. John's Manners and Customs of Ancient Greece. I. 107 288; and Becker's Charicles, p. 215-240. This and the following extracts are taken from St. John's Manners and Customs, &c.
Chaffinches, turtle-doves, and good fat thrushes
And drink large draughts of scurcely mingled wine. But it was on the seventh day that the child generally received its name, amid the festivities of another banquet; though sometimes this was deferred till the tenth. The reason is supplied by Aristotle. They delayed the naming thus long, he says, because most children that perish in extreme infancy die before the seventh day, which being passed, they considered their lives more secure. The eighth day was chosen by other persons for bestowing the name, and, this considered the natal day, was solemnized annually as the anniversary of its birth, on which occasion it was customary for the friends of the family to assemble together, and present gifts to the child, consisting sometimes of the polypi and cuttle-fish to be eaten at the feast. However, the tenth day appears to have been very commonly observed. Thus Euripides :
Say, who delighting in a mother's claim
Mid tenth-day feasts bestowed the ancestral name? Aristophanes, too, on the occasion of naming his Bird-city, which a hungry poet pretends to have long ago celebrated, introduces Peisthetæros saying:
What! have I not but now the sacrifice
A name as on a child? The right of imposing the name belonged, as hinted above, to the father, who likewise appears to have possessed the power afterward to alter it if he thought proper. They were compelled to follow no exact precedent; but the general rule resembled one apparently observed by nature, which, neglecting the likeness in the first generation, sometimes reproduces it with extraordinary fidelity in the second. Thus, the grandson inheriting often the features, inherited also very generally the name of his grandfather, and precisely the same rule applied to women; the granddaughter nearly always receiving her grandmother's name. Thus, Andocides, son of Leagoras, bore the name of his grandfather: the father and son of Miltiades were pamed Cimon; the father and son of Hipponicos, Cleinias.
In Plato's Republic, the nurses were to live apart in a distinct quarter of the city, and suckle indiscriminately all the children that were to be preserved; no mother being permitted to know her own child.
Every oue must have observed, as well as Plato, that children are no sooner born than they exhibit unequivocal signs of passion and anger, in the modera. ting and directing of which consists the chiefest difficulty of education. Most men, tlırough the defect of nature or early discipline, live long before they acquire this mastery, which many never attain at all. Generally, however, where it is possessed, much may certainly be attributed to that training which begins at the birth, so that of all the instruments employed in the forming of character, the nurse is probably the most important.
But their cares extended beyond the person. They aimed at forming the man. ners, regulating the temper, laying the foundation of virtuous babits, at sowing, in short, the seeds, which in after life, might ripen into a manly, frank, and generous character. In the matter of food, in the regulating of which, as Locke confesses, there is much difficulty, the Spartan nurses acted up to the suggestions of the sternest philosophy, accustoming the children under their charge, to be content with whatever was put before them, and to endure occasional prirations without murmuring. Over the fear of ghosts, too, they triumphed. Empusa and