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ourt most what is prohibited, and to set light by what is in its own power; I am half doubtful (only that Mr. Locke says it, and it may not be so very important as other points, in which I have ventured to differ from that gentleman), whether the child's absolute possession of his own playthings in some little repository, of which he may be permitted to keep the key, especially if he makes no bad use of the privilege, would not make him more indifferent to them: while the contrary conduct might possible enhance his value of them. And if, when he had done with any plaything, he were obliged to put it into its allotted place, and were accustomed to keep account of the number and places of them severally; this would teach him order, and at the same time instruct him to keep a proper account of them, and to avoid being a squanderer or waster: and if he should omit to put his playthings in their places, or be careless of them, the tak ing them away for a time, or threatening to give them to others, would make him the more heedful.

Mr. Locke says, that he has known a child so distracted with the number and variety of his playthings, that he tired his maid every day to look them over: and was so accustomed to abundance, that he never thought he had enough, but was always asking, What more? What new thing shall I have?'-'A good introduction,' adds he, ironically, to moderate desires, and the ready way to make a contented happy man.'

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All that I shall offer to this, is, that few men are so philosophical as one would wish them to be, much less children. But, no doubt, this variety engaged the child's activity; which, of the two might be turned to better purposes than sloth or indolence; and if the maid was tired, it might be, because she was not so much alive as the child; and perhaps this part of the grievance might not be so great, because, if she was his attendant, 'tis probable she had nothing else to do.

However, in the main, as Mr. Locke says, it is no matter how few playthings the child is indulged with: but yet I can hardly persuade myself, that plenty of them can have such bad consequences as he apprehends; and the rather, because they will excite his attention, and promote his industry and activity. His inquiry after new things, let him have (24.)

few or many, is to be expected as a consequence to those natural desires which are implanted in him, and wil every day increase: but this may be observed, that as he grows in years, he will be above some playthings, and so the number of the old ones will be always reducible, perhaps in a greater proportion, than the new ones will increase.

On the head of good-breeding, he observes, that, there are two sorts o ill-breeding; the one a sheepish bashfulness, and the other a misbecoming negligence and disrespect in our car riage; both which,' says he, are avoided by duly observing this one rule, not to think meanly of ourselves, and not to think meanly of others.' I think, as Mr. Locke explains this rule, it is aé excellent one. But I would beg to observe upon it, that however discom mendable a bashful temper is, in some instances, where it must be deemed a weakness of the mind, yet, in my hum ble opinion, it is generally the mark o an ingenuous one, and is always to be preferred to an undistinguishing and hardy confidence, which, as it seems me, is the genuine production of in vincible ignorance.

What is faulty in it, which he calls sheepishness, should indeed be shaker off as soon as possible, because it is as enemy to merit in its advancement is the world: but, Sir, were I to choose a companion for your Billy, as he grow up, I should not think the worse o the youth, who, not having had the opportunities of knowing men, or seeing the world, had this defect. On the contrary, I should be apt to look upon it as an outward fence or inclosure to his virtue, which might keep off the lighter attacks of immorality, the Hussars o. vice, as I may say, who are not able to carry on a formal siege against his morals; and I should expect such a one to be docile, humane, good-humoured diffident of himself, and therefore mos likely to improve as well in mind as behaviour: while a hardened mind, tha never doubts itself, must be a stranger to its own infirmities, and suspecting none, is impetuous, over-bearing, incorrigible; and, if rich, a tyrant; í. not, possibly an invader of other men' properties; or at least, such a one as allows itself to walk so near the borders of injustice, that where self is concern ed, it hardly ever does right things.

4 A

Mr. Locke proposes (148) a very pretty method to cheat children, as it were, into learning: but then he adds, There may be dice and playthings, with the letters on them, to teach children the alphabet by playing.' And (151) I know a person of great quality, who, by pasting on the six vowels (for in our language y is one) on the six sides of a dice, and the remaining eigh teen consonants on the sides of three other dice, has made this a play for his children, that he shall win, who at one cast throws most words on these four dice; whereby his eldest son, yet in coats, has played himself into spelling with great eagerness, and without once having been chid for it, or forced to it.' But I had rather your Billy should be a twelvemonth backwarder for want of this method, than forwarded by it. For what may not be feared from so early inculcating the use of dice and gaming, upon the minds of children? Let Mr. Locke himself speak to this in his § 208, and I wish I could reconcile the two passages in this excellent author. As to cards and dice,' says ne, I think the safest and best way is, never to learn any play upon them, and so to be incapacitated for these dangerous temptations, and encroaching wasters of useful time.' And, he might have added, of the noblest estates and fortunes; while sharpers and Scoundrels have been lifted into distinction upon their ruins. Yet, in 153, Mr. Locke proceeds to give directions in relation to the dice he recommends.

But after all, if some innocent plays were fixed upon to cheat children into reading, that, as he says, should look as little like a task as possible, it must needs be of use for that purpose. But let every gentleman, who has a fortune to lose, and who, if he games, is on a foot with the vilest company, who generally have nothing at all to risque, tremble at the thoughts of teaching his son, though for the most laudable purposes, the early use of dice and gaming.

But how much I am charmed with a hint in Mr. Locke, which makes your Pamela hope, sbe may be of greater use to your children, even as they grow up, than she could ever have flattered herself to be. 'Tis a charming paragraph; I must not skip one word of it. Thus it begins, and I will observe upon it as I go along. § 177. But under

whose care soever a child is put to be taught, during the tender and flexible years of his life, this is certain, it should be one who thinks Latin and language the least part of education.'

How agreeable is this to my notions; which I durst not have avowed, but after so excellent a scholar! For I have long had the thought, that much time is wasted to little purpose in the attaining of Latin. Mr. H. I think, says he was ten years in endeavouring to learn it, and, as far as I can find, knows nothing at all of the matter neither!Indeed he lays that to the wicked picture in his grammar, which he took for granted (as he has often said, as well as once written) was put there to teach boys to rob orchards, instead of improving their minds in learning, or common honesty.

But (for this is too light an instance for the subject) Mr. Locke proceedsOne who knowing how much virtue and a well-tempered soul is to be preferred to ony sort of learning or language,' [What a noble writer is this!] 'makes it his chief business to form the mind of his scholars, and give that a right disposition:' [ Ay, there, dear Sir, is the thing!] which if once got, though all the rest should be neglected,' [charmingly observed!] * would, in dee time, [without wicked dice I hope!] produce all the rest; and which, if it be not got and settled, so as to keep out ill and vicious habits, languages and sciences, and all the other accomplishments of education, will be to no purpose, but to make the worse or more dangerous man.' Now comes the place 1 am so much delighted with !] · And indeed, whatever stir there is made about getting of Latin, as the great and dificult business, his mother' [thank you, dear Sir, for putting this excellent author into my hands!] may teach it him herself, if she will but spend two or three hours in a day with him' [iƒ she will! Never fear, but I will, with the highest pleasure in the world!] and make him read the Evangelists in Latin to her.' [How I long to be five or six years older, as well as my dearest babies, that I may enter upon this charming scheme!] For she need but buy a Latin Testament, and having got somebody to mark the last syllable but one, where it is long, in words above two syllables (which is enough to regulate her pronunciation and accenting the

words), read daily in the Gospels, and then let her avoid understanding them in Latin, if she can.'

Why, dear Sir, you have taught me almost all this already; and you, my beloved tutor, have told me often, I read and pronounce Latin more than tolerably, though I don't understand it: but this method will teach me, as well as your dear children-But thus the good gentleman proceeds- And when she understands the Evangelists in Latin, let her in the same manner read Esop's Fables, and so proceed on to Eutropius, Justin, and such other books. I do not mention this,' adds Mr. Locke, as au imagination of what I fancy may do, but as of a thing I have known done, and the Latin tongue got with ease this way.'

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He then mentions other advantages, which the child may receive from his mother's instruction, which I will try more and more to qualify myself for: particularly, after he has intimated, that at the same time that the child is learning French and Latin he may be entered also in arithmetic, geography, chronology, history, and geometry too; for if,' says he, these be taught him in French or Latin, when he begins once to understand either of these tongues, he will get a knowledge of these sciences, and the language to boot.' He then proceeds: Geography, I think, should be begun with: for the learning of the figure of the globe, the situation and boundaries of the four parts of the world, and that of particular kingdoms and countries, being only an exercise of the eyes and memory, a child with pleasure will learn and retain them. And this is so certain, that I now live in a house with a child, whom his MOTHER has so well instructed this way in geography,' [But had she not, do you think, dear Sir, some of this good gentleman's kind assistance ?] that he knew the limits of the four parts of the world; would readily point, being asked, to, any country upon the globe, or any county in the map of England; knew all the great rivers, promontories, streights, and bays in the world, and could find the longitude and latitude of any place, before he was six years old.'

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There's for you, dear Sir !-See what a mother can do if she pleases!

I remember, Sir, formerly, in that sweet chariot conference, * at the dawning of my hopes, when all my dangers were happily over (a conference I shall always think of with pleasure), that you asked me, how I would bestow my time, supposing the neighbouring ladies would be above being seen in my company; when I should have no visits to receive or return; no parties of pleasure to join in; no card-tables to employ my winter evenings?

I then, Sir, transported with my opening prospects, prattled to you, how well I would try to pass my time, in the family management and accounts, in visits now and then to the indigent and worthy poor; in music sometimes; in reading, in writing, in my superior duties And I hope I have not behaved quite unworthily of my promises.

But I also remember, what once you said on a certain occasion, which now, since the fair prospect is no longer distant, and that I have been so long your happy wife, I may repeat without those blushes which then covered my face; thus then, with a modest grace, and with that virtuous endearment that is so beautiful in your sex, as well as in ours, whether in the character of lover or husband, maiden or wife, you were pleased to say- And I hope, my Pamela, to have superadded to all these, such an employment as in short, Sir, I am now blessed with, and writing of; no less than the useful part I may be able to take in the first education of your beloved babies!

And now I must add, that this pleasing hope sets me above all other diversions: I wish for no parties of pleasure but with you, my dearest Mr. B. and these are parties that will improve me, and make me more capable of the other, and more worthy of your conversation, and of the time you pass (beyoud what I could ever have promised to my utmost wishes) in such poor company as mine, for no other reason but because I love to be instructed, and take my lessons well, as you are pleased to say: and indeed I must be a sad dunce, if I did not, from so skilful and so beloved a master. I want no cardtable amusements: for I hope, in a few

See p. 141, 142.

556

years (and a proud hope it is), to be
able to teach your dear little ones the
first rudiments, as Mr. Locke points the
way, of Latin, of French, and of geo-
graphy, and arithmetic.

O, my dear Mr. B. by your help and
countenance, what may I not be able
to teach them, and how may I prepare
the way for a tutor's instructions, and
give him up minds half cultivated to
his hands! And all this time improve
myself too, not only in science, but in
nature, by tracing in the little babes
what all mankind are, and have been,
from infancy to riper years, and watch
ing the sweet dawnings of reason, and
delighting in every bright emanation
of that ray of divinity lent to the hu-
man mind, for great and happy pur-
poses, when rightly pointed and di-
rected.

There is no going farther after these charming recollections and hopes, for they bring me to that grateful remem brance, to whom, under God, I owe them all, and also what I have been for so happy a period, and what I am, which will ever be my pride and my glory; and well it may, when I look back to my beginning with humble acknowledgment, and can call myself, dearest Mr. B. your honoured and honouring, and, I hope to say, in time, useful wife P. B.

LETTER XCVII.

MY DEAREST MR. B.

HAVING in my former letters said as much as is necessary to let you into my notion of the excellent book you put into my hands, and having touched those points in which the children of both sexes may be concerned (with some art in my intention I own), in hope that they would not be so much on of the way, as to make you repent of the honour you have done me, in committing the dear Miss Goodwin to my care; I shall now very quickly set myself about the proposed little book. You have been so good as to tell me (at the same time that you disapprove not these my specimen letters as I may call them), that you will kindly accept of my intended present, and encourage me to proceed in it; and as I shall leave one side of the leaf blank for your cor rections and alterations, those correrfions will be a fine help and instruction to me in the pleasing task which I

propose to myself, of assisting in the early education of your dear children. And as I may be years in writing it, as the dear babes improve, as I myself their advances in years will give me, improve, by the opportunities which and the experience I shall gain, I may then venture to give my notions on the cation, as well as the inferior: for (but more material and nobler parts of eduthat I think the subjects above my prelead me into several remarks, that sent abilities) Mr. Locke's book would might not be unuseful, and which appear to me entirely new; though that may be owing to my slender reading and opportunities, perhaps.

is a word or two still more particularly But what I would now touch upon, upon the education of, my own sex; a the subject of my last letter. For there, topic which naturally rises to me from dear Sir, we saw, that the mothers might teach the child this part of science, and that part of instruction; and who, I pray, as our sex is generally educated, shall teach the mothers? their knowledge? How, in a word, shall they come by

Miss Goodwin gives all the promises of I know you'll be apt to say, that becoming a fine young lady, and takes her learning, loves reading, and makes very pretty reflections upon all she reads, and asks very pertinent questions, and is as knowing, at her years, as most young ladies. This is very true, boast of Miss Goodwin's capacity, and Sir; but it is not every one that can goodness of temper, which have enabled her to get up a good deal of lost time, years were a perfect blank, as far as I as I must call it; for her first four can find, just as if the pretty dear was born the day she was four years old; for what she had to unlearn as to temper, and will, and such things, set against what little improvements she had made, might very fairly be compounded for, as a blank.

I would indeed have a girl brought
all her time employed in samplers, and
up to her needle, but I would not have
learning to mark, and do those un-
necessary things, which she will never,
probably, be called upon to prac
tise.

tled to the same first education, though
And why, pray, are not girls enti
not to the same plays and diversions
as boys; so far, at least, as is supposed

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by Mr. Locke a mother can instruct

them?

Would not this lay a foundation for their future improvement, and direct their inclinations to useful subjects, such as would make them above the imputations of some unkind gentlemen, who allot to their part common teatable prattle, while they do all they can to make them fit for nothing else, and then upbraid them for it? And would not the men find us better and more suitable companions and assistants to them in every useful purpose of life?-O that your lordly sex were all like my dear Mr. B.-I don't mean that they should all take raw, uncouth, unbred, lowly girls, as I was, from the cottage, and, destroying all distinction, make such their wives; for there is a far greater likelihood, that such a one, when she comes to be lifted up into so dazzling a sphere, would have her head made giddy with her exaltation, than that she would balance herself well in it and to what a blot, over all the fair page of a long life, would this little drop of dirty ink spread itself! What a standing disreputation to the choice of a gentleman!

But this I mean, that after a gentleman had entered into the marriage state with a young creature (saying nothing at all of birth or descent) far inferior to him in learning, in parts, in knowledge of the world, and in all the graces which make conversation agreeable and improving, he would, as you da, endeavour to make her fit company for himself, as he shall find she is will ing to improve, and capable of improvement: that he would direct her taste, point out to her proper subjects for her amusement and instruction; travel with her now and then, a month in a year perhaps; and shew her the world, after he has encouraged her to put herself forward at his own table, and at the houses of his friends, and has seen, that she will not do him great discredit any where. What obligations, and opportunities too, will this give her to love and honour such a husband, every hour, more and more! as she will see his wisdom in a thousand instances, and experience his indulgence to her in ten thousand, to the praise of his politeness, and the honour of them both!-And then, when select parties of pleasure or business engaged him

not abroad, in his home conversation, to have him delight to instruct and open her views, and inspire her with an ambition to enlarge her mind, and more and more to excel! What an intellectual kind of married life would such persons find theirs! And how suitable to the rules of policy and self-love in the gentleman! for is not the wife, and are not her improvements, all his own

Absolutely, as I may say, his own? And does not every excellence she can be adorned by, redound to her husband's honour because she is kis, even more than to her own?-In like manner as no dishonour affects a man so much, as that which he receives from a bad wife.

But where is such a gentleman as Mr. B. to be met with? Look round and see where, with all the advantages of sex, of education, of travel, of conversation in the open world, a gentleman of his abilities to instruct and inform, is to be found? And there are others, who, perhaps, will question the capacities or inclinations of our sex in general, to improve in useful knowledge, were they to meet with such kind instructors, either in the characters of parents or husbands.

As to the first, I grant, that it is not easy to find such a gentleman: but for the second (if excusable in me, who am one of the sex, and so may be thought partial to it), I could by comparisons drawn from the gentlemen and ladies within the circle of my own acquaintance, produce instances, which are so flagrantly in their favour, as night make it suspected, that it is policy more than justice, in those who would keep our sex unacquainted with that more eligible turn of education, which gives the gentlemen so many advantages over us in that; and which will shew, they have none at all in nature or genius.

I know you will pardon me, dear Sir; for you are so exalted above your Pamela, by nature and education too, that you cannot apprehend any inconvenience from bold comparisons. I will beg, therefore, to mention a few instances among our friends, where the ladies, notwithstanding their more cramped and confined education, make more than an equal figure with the gentlemen in all the graceful parts of conversation, in spite of the contempts

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