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Give law to words, or war with words alone,
‘Mistress! dismiss that rabble from your throne:
• In the year 1703 there was a meeting of the bends of the University of Oxford, to censure Mr. Locke's Essny on the Human Understanding, and to forbid the reading of it.
+ Author of the commentary on Pope's Essay on Man. 1 Bentley's constant friend in college.
Let Freind effect to speak as Terrence spoke
"What though we let some better sort of fool
* Dr. Robert Freind, Master of Westminster School.
Walker! our hat-nor more he deign'd to say,
Then thick as locusts black’ning all the ground,
The first thus open'd: Hear thy suppliant's call, Great queen, and common mother of us all! Fair from its humble bed I rear'd this flow'r, Suckled, and cheer'd, with air, and sun, and show'r. Soft on the paper ruff its leaves I spread, Bright with the gilded button tipt its head. Then thron'd in glass, and nam'd it CAROLINE: Each maid cry's Charming! and each youth, Divine!
My sons! (she answer'd), both have done your parts : Live happy both, and long promote our arts. But hear a mother, when she recommends To your fraternal care our sleeping friends. The common soul, of Heaven's most frugal make, Serves but to keep fools pert, and knaves awake: A drowsy watchman, that just gives a knock, And breaks our rest, to tell us what's a-clock. Yet by some object ev'ry brain is stirr'd; The dull may waken to a humming-bird; The most recluse, discreetly open'd, find Congenial matter in the cockle kind; The mind, in metaphysics at a loss, May wander in a wilderness of moss; The head that turns at super-lunar things, Poiz'd with a tail, may steer on Wilkins' wings.
0! would the sons of men once think their eyes And reason giv'n them but to study flies ! See Nature in some partial narrow shape, And let the author of the whole escape : Learn but to trifle; or, who most observe, To wonder at their Maker, not to serve. We nobly take the high Priori road, And reason downward, till we doubt of God: Make nature still encroach upon his plan; And shove him off as far as e'er we can.
ROBERT SOUTH, D.D.--1627-1689. In 1678, Dr. South prepared a sermon to be preached at a convention of such as had been bred at Westminster School, and which, without being preached, was published in a volume of sermons with a special dedication to the head-master, Dr. Robert Friend, " as a mark of his sacred gratitude to the sound training of that Royal Foundation—that seminary of learning, loyalty, and religion.” The whole aim of the discourse is to illustrate and enforce the doctrine, that the virtuous education of youth is the surest if not the only way to a happy and honorable old age-meaning by education, “the training up of a child in the way he should go-the inculcation of sound knowledge, and the habit of walking in the right path.” The duty of this training devolves on 1, Parents ; 2, Schoolmasters; and 3, the Clergy.
DUTY OF PARENTS.
Jewish fathers professedly take upon themselves the guilt of all their childrens' sins till they come to be thirteen years old, and the faith of the family is diligently taught when they sit in the house, and walk by the way, when they lie down, and when they rise up, and thus work into the thread of their daily existence the precepts of their ancestral faith.
DUTY OF SCHOOLMASTERS.
I know not how it comes to pass that this honorable employment of training up of youth should find so little respect (as experience shows it does), from too many in the world. For there is no profession which has or can have a greater influence upon the public. Schoolmasters have a negative upon the peace and welfare of the kingdom. They are indeed the great depositories and keepers of the peace of it; as having the growing hopes and fears of the nation in their hands. The subjects generally are and will be such as they brand them. So that I look upon an able, well-principled schoolmaster as one of the most meritorious subjects in any power's dominions that can be; and every such school under such a master, as a seminary of loyalty, and a mining of allegiance. Nay, I take schoolmasters to have a more powerful influence upon the spirits of men than preachers themselves. It being seldom found, that the pulpit mends what the school has marred: and impressions on young and tender minds are the most certain for good or evil.
(1.) Let the educators of youth remember that excellent and never-to-be-forgotten advice, “that boys will be men;" and that the memory of all base usage will sink so deep into, and grow up so inseparably with them, that it will not be so much as in their own power ever to forget it. For though indeed schoolmasters are a sort of kings, yet they can not always pass such acts of oblivion as shall operate upon their scholars, or perhaps, in all things, indemnify themselves.
(2.) Where they find a youth of spirit, let them endeavor to govern that spirit without extinguishing it; to bend it, without breaking it; for when it comes once to be extinguished, and broken, and lost, it is not in the power or art of man to recover it; and then (believe it) no knowledge of nouns and pronouns, syntaxes and prosodia, can ever compensate or make amends for such a loss. The French, they say, are exceedingly happy at this, who will instruct a youth of spirit to a decent boldness, tempered with a due modesty; which two qualities in conjunction do, above all others, fit a man both for business and address. But for want of this art, some schools have ruined more good wits than they have improved; and even those which they have sent away with some tolerable improvement, like men escaped from a shipwreck, carry off only the remainder of those natural advantages which in much greater plenty they had brought with them.
(3.) Let not the chastisement of the body be managed so as to make a wound which shall rankle and fester in the very soul. That is, let not children, whom nature itself would bear up by an innate, generous principle of emulation, be exposed, cowed, and depressed with scoffs, contumelies (founded * perhaps upon the master's own guilt) to the scorn and contempt of their equals and emulators. For this is, instead of rods, to chastise them with scorpions; and is the most direct way to stupefy and besot, and make them utterly regardless of themselves and of all that is praiseworthy; besides that, it will be sure to leave in their minds such inward regrets as are never to be qualified or worn off. It is very indecent for a master to jest or play with his scholars; but not only indecent, but very dangerous too, in such a way to play upon them.
(4.) And lastly, let it appear in all acts of penal animadversion, that the person is loved while his fault is punished; nay, that one is punished only out of love to the other; and (believe it) there is hardly any one so much a child, but has sagacity enough to perceive this. Let no melancholy fumes and spites and secret animosities pass for discipline. Let the master be as angry for the boy's fault as reason will allow him; but let not the boy be in fault, only because the master has a mind to be angry. In a word, let not the master have the spleen, and the scholars be troubled with it. But above all, let not the sids, or faults, or wants of the parents be punished upon the children; for that is a prerogative which God has reserved to himself.
These things I thought fit to remark about the education and educators of youth in general, not that I have any thoughts or desires of invading their province; but possibly a stander-by may sometimes look as far into the game as he who plays it; and with no less judgment, because with much less concern.
DUTY OF THE CLERGY. The third and last sort of persons concerned in the great charge of instructing youth are the clergy. For as parents deliver their children to the schoolmaster, so the schoolmaster delivers them to the minister. And for my own part, I never thought a pulpit, a cushion, and an honr-glass such necessary means of salvation, but that much of the time and labor which is spent about them, might be much more profitably bestowed in catechising youth from the desk; preaching being a kind of spiritual diet, upon which people are always feeding, but never full; and many poor souls, God knows, are too like Pharaoh's lean kine, much the leaner for their full feed.
[The author of this discourse was a deadly foe to "the Rebellion," its actors and adettors, and the application of his sound principle, is to the utter extirpation of the deed, as well as the peril of that great political and religious movement. He thinks the rebellion could not have happened if parents, teachers, and clergy had done their duty to the youth of the realm.)