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And thrice in every winter throngs thine own With half the chariots and sedans in town, Thyself meanwhile e'en shifting as thou mayst; Not very sober though, nor very chaste; Or is thine house, though less superb thy rank, If not a scene of pleasure, a mere blank, And ihou at best, and in thy soberest mood, A trifler vain, and empty of all good; Though mercy for thyself thou canst have none, Hear Nature plead, show mercy to thy son. Saved from his home, where every day brings forth Some mischief fatal to his future worth, Find him a better in a distant spot, Within some pious pastor's humble cot, Where vile exaınple (yours I chiefly mean, The most seducing, and the oftenest seen) May never more be stamp'd upon his breast, Not yet perhaps incurably impress'cl. Where early rest makes early rising sure, Disease or comes not, or finds easy cure, Prevented much by diet neat and plain; Or, if it enter, soon starved out again : Where all the attention of his faithful host, Discreetly limited to two al most, May raise such fruits as shall reward his care, And not at last evaporate in air: Where, stillness aiding study, and his mind Serene, and to his duties much inclined, Not occupied in day dream, as at home, Of pleasures past, or follies yet to come, His virtuous toil may terminate at last In settled habit and decided taste.But whom do I advise ? the fashion-led, The incorrigibly wrong. the deaf, the dead! Whom care and cool deliberation suit Not better much than spectacles a brute; Who, if their sons some slight tuition share, Deem it of no great moment whose, or where; Too proud to adopt the thoughts of one unknown, And much too gay to have any of their own. But courage, man! methought the Muse repliea, Mankind are various, and the world is wide: The ostrich, silliest of the feather'd kind, And form'd of God without a parent's mind, Commits her eggs, incautious, to the dust, Forgetful that the foot may crush the trust; And, while on public nurseries they rely, Not knowing, and too oft not caring, why, Irrational in what they tbus prefer, No few, that would seem wise, resemble her. But all are not alike. Thy warning voice May here and there prevent erroneous choice; And some, perhaps, who, busy as they are, Yet make their progeny their dearest care,
(Whose hearts will ache, once told what ills may reach
To you, then, tenants of life's middle state,
My boy, the unwelcome hour is come,
Who there will court thy friendship, with what views, And, artless as thou art, whom thou wilt choose; Though much depends on what thy choice shall be, Js all chance-medley, and unknown to me. Canst thou, the lear just trembling on tby lids, And while the dreadful risk foreseen forbids; Free too, and under no constraining force, Unless the sway of custom warp iby course ; Lay such a stake upon the losing side, Merely to gratisy so blind a guide ? Thou canst not! Nature, pulling at thine heart, Condemns the unfatherly, the imprudent part. Thou wouldst not, deaf to Nature's tenderest plea, Turn him adrift opon a rolling sea, Nor say, Go thither, conscious that there lay A brood of asps, or quicksands in his way ; Then, only govern'd by the self-same rule Of natural pity, send him not to school. No-guard him better. Is he not thine own, Thyself in miniature, thy fiesh, thy bone ? And hopest thou not, ('tis every father's hope,) That, since thy strength must with tby years elope, And thou wilt need some comfort to assuage Health's last farewell, a staff of thine old age, That then, in recompense of all thy cares, Thy child shall show respect to thy gray hairs, Befriend thee, of all other friends berest, And give thy life its only cordial left? Aware then how much danger intervenes, To compass that good end, forecast the means. His heart, now passive, yields to thy command; Secure it thine, its key is in thine. hand; If thou desert thy charge, and throw it wide, Nor heed what guests there enter and abide, Complain not if attachments lewd and base Supplant thee in it, and usurp thy place. But if thou guard its sacred chambers sure From vicious inmates and delights impure, Either his gratitude shall hold him fast, And keep him warm and filial to the last; Or, if he prove unkind, (as who can say But, being man, and therefore frail, he may ?) One comfort yet shall cheer thine aged heart, Howe'er he slight thee, thou hast done thy part.
Oh, barbarous ! wouldst thou with a Gothic hand Pull down the schools—what !-all the schools i'th' land; Or throw them up to livery nags and grooms, Or turn them into shops and auction-rooms? A captious question, sir, (and yours is one,) Deserves an answer similar, or none. Wouldst thou, possessor of a flock, employ (Apprised that he is such) a careless boy, And feed him well, and give him handsome pay, Merely to sleep, and let them run astray ? Survey our schools and colleges, and see A sight not inuch unlike my simile.
From education, as the leading cause,
From the Tasc. Book IL. The Time-Piece
In colleges and halls, in ancient days, When learning, virtue, piety, and truth Were precious and inculcated with care, There dwelt a suge called Discipline. His head, Not yet by time completely silver'd o'er, Bespoke him past the bounds of freakish youth, But strong for service still, and unimpair'd. His eye was meek and gentle, and a smile Play'd on his lips; and in his speech was heard Paternal sweetness, dignity, and love. The occupation dearest to his heart Was to encourage goodness. He would stroke The head of modest and ingenuous worth, That blush'd at its own praise; and press the youth Close to his side that plensed him. Learning grew Beneath his care a thriving vigorous plant; The mind was well inform'd, the passions held Subordinate, and diligence was choice. If e'er it chanced, as sometimes chance it must, That one among so many over leap'd The limits of control, his gentle eye Grew stern, and darted a severe rebuke His frown was full of terror, and his voice Shook the delinquent with such fits of awo As left him not, till penitence had won Lost favor back again, and closed the breach. But Discipline, a faithful servant long, Declined at length into the vale of years : A palsy struck his arm; his sparkling eye Was quench'd in rheums of age; his voice, unstrung, Grew tremulous, and moved derision more Than reverence in perverse rebellious youth. So colleges and halls neglected much Their good old friend; and Discipline at length, O'er look'd and unemploy'd, fell sick, and died. Then Study languish’d, Emulation slept, And Virtue fled. The schools became a scene of solemn farce, where Ignorance in stilts, His cap well lined with logie not his own, With parrot tongue perform'd the scholar's part, Proceeding soon a graduated dunce. Then compromise had place, and scrutiny Became stone blind; precedence went in truck, And he was competent whose purse was so
A dissolution of all bonds ensued ;
All are not such. I had a brother once