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for them? Thus under the shelter and pretence of a governor, thinking themselves excused from standing upon their own legs, or being accountable for their own conduct, they very seldom trouble themselves with inquiries, or making useful observations of their own. Their thoughts run after play and pleasure, wherein they take it as a lessening to be controlled : but seldom trouble themselves to examine the designs, observe the address, and consider the arts, tempers, and inclinations of men they meet with ; that so they may know how to comport themselves' towards them. Here he that travels with them, is to skreen them, get them out, when they have run themselves into the briars; and in all their miscarriages be answerable for them.
$ 214. I confess, the knowledge of men is so great a skill, that it is not to be expected a young man should presently be perfect in it. But yet his going abroad is to little purpose, if travel does not sometimes open his eyes, make him cautious and wary, and accustom him to look beyond the outside, and, under the inoffensive guard of a civil and obliging carriage, keep himself free and safe in his conversation with strangers, and all sorts of people, without forfeiting their good opinion. He that is sent out to travel at the age, and with the thoughts, of a man designing to improve himself, may get into the conversation and acquaintance of persons of condition where he comes : which, though a thing of most advantage to a gentleman that travels, yet, I ask, amongst our young men that go abroad under tutors, what one is there of a hundred that ever visits any person of quality ? much less makes an acquaintance with such, from whose conversation he may learn what is good breeding in that country, and what is worth observation in it ; though from such persons
it is, one may learn more in one day than in a year's rambling from one inn to another. Nor indeed is it to be wondered ; for men of worth and parts will not easily admit the familiarity of boys, who yet need the care of a tutor; though a young gentleman and stranger, appearing like a man, and showing a desire to inform himself in the customs, manners, laws, and govern
ment of the country he is in, will find welcome assistance and entertainment amongst the best and most knowing persons every where, who will be ready to receive, encourage, and countenance any ingenious and inquisitive foreigner.
$ 215. This, how true soever it be, will not, I fear, alter the custom, which has cast the time of travel upon the worst part of a man's life; but for reasons not taken from their improvement. The young lad must not be ventured abroad at eight or ten, for fear of what máy happen to the tender child, though he then runs ten times less risk than at sixteen or eighteen. Nor must he stay at home till that dangerous heady age be over, because he must be back again by one-and-twenty, to marry and propagate. The father cannot stay any longer for the portion, nor the mother for a new set of babies to play with: and so my young master, whatever comes on it, must have a wife looked out for him, by that time he is of age; though it would be no prejudice to his strength, his parts, or his issue, if it were respited for some time, and he had leave to get, in years and knowledge, the start a little of his children, who are often found to tread too near upon the heels of their fathers, to the no great satisfaction either of son or father. But the young gentleman being got within view of matrimony, it is time to leave him to his mistress. Conclusion.
$ 216. Though I am now come to a con
clusion of what obvious remarks have suggested to me concerning education, I would not have it thought, that I look on it as a just treatise on this subject. There are a thousand other things that may need consideration; especially if one should take in the various tempers, different inclinations, and particular defaults, that are to be found in children ; and prescribe proper remedies. The variety is so great, that it would require a volume ; nor would that reach it. Each man's mind has some peculiarity, as well as his face, that distinguishes him from all others; and there are possibly scarce two children, who can be conducted by exactly the same method. Besides that, I think a prince,
a nobleman, and an ordinary gentleman's son, should have different ways of breeding. But having had here only some general views, in reference to the main end and aims in education, and those designed for a gentleman's son, whom, being then very little, I considered only as white paper, or wax, to be moulded and fashioned as one pleases; I have touched little more than those heads, which I judged necessary for the breeding of a young gentleman of his condition in general ; and have now published these my occasional thoughts, with this hope, that, though this be far from being a complete treatise on this subject, or such as that every one may find what will just fit his child in it; yet it may give, some small light to those, whose concern for their dear little ones makes them so irregularly bold, that they dare venture to consult their own reason, in the education of their children, rather than wholly to rely upon old custom.
JOHN LOCKE, ESQ.
I. Of the Conduct of the Understanding.
II. An Examination of P. Malebranche's Opinion
of seeing all Things in God.
III. A Discourse of Miracles.
IV. * Part of a fourth Letter for Toleration.
V. Memoirs relating to the Life of Antony, first
Earl of Shaftesbury.
* This letter, to preserve a connexion of the subject, is in this edition carried to the former three Letters on Toleration, in the sixth volume.