Imagens das páginas


more entirely given to whatever the first reading, but which will compel a subject may be of investigation. There recurrence to passages at first real is less of conventional accominodation with some impatience, and finally lead and observance necessary in the us to inore entire agreement with the communication of truths to them. forms of instruction adopted, than we Our author refers to the divine teach- could have at all at first anticipated. ing to show “ how the highest things We allude to a marked peculiarity of are addressed to all classes." This our author's style, which is that of might be stated even with greater casting much of the new matter which strength than it is--for to the poor he brings into proverbial and aphoristhose things are directly communi- tic forms. Does he want to cheat us cated, while, with the classes who into a belief that, what is truly origiwould perhaps imagine themselves nal, nas been, in reality, so long and so more capable of receiving instruction familiarly known, as to have moulded in its severest forms, the less perfect itself into forms, that assume its admediumn of parables is adopted. There mitted truth? To enjoy, or would seem to be in their case a diffi- quite to understand the proverbs of culty in looking at things in them. a people, it is necessary to have lived selves which did not in the same de- among them. In other words, the gree exist in our Lord's humble fol

proverb should express the result of lowers. To the understandings of the a process of thought in which we have poorer classes then, and to the more shared. It falls dead upon us till its generous feelings of all classes, do we truth has been in a hundred instances think that the reasoner on any subject exemplified. On this account we think may safely address himself, in perfect this volume will be valued most by certainty of finding their strong sym- those who are acquainted with the pathy with whatever is best in what- author's earlier works—who have beever he may bring forward. It should come familiar with his style and mode not, however, be forgotten that the of thinking. For our own parts, we are generous feelings on which such re

disposed to prefer a book written in liance may be safely placed, are, from a more conversational style, and in the very fact of their being easily which, when any thing particularly excitable, not always acted on. Per- good occurs, the reader thinks he has sons become distrustful of themselves à right, from his going along corand of the oratory which would call dially with his author through rough upon them to make any such sacrifice and smooth, as it may happen, to cry as involves continuing thought: and a « halves." hundred ugly vices, which we do not Our objection to our author's meawish to look at distinctly, will assume sured style is applicable only to the disguises that reconcile them to our early chapters; and if it were not a imagination. Want of human sym- reviewer's business to discover faults, pathy with distress, will call itself

(" we are nothing if not critical,") prudence ; avarice assume the shape might be better omitted. The two of regard for wife or child; and indo- first chapters give some excuse for the lence, perhaps, content itself with weep- observation. In the third this formiting romantic tears at the spell of some lity has altogether melted away, and a builder-up of cottage fairy tales, or stream of easy thought flows on in nalaugh with Lever at the drolleries of tural and often very graceful expres. Irish life, or complacently regard itself sion. We have said that this is a practias usefully employed in reading with cal work. The details of improvement much approbation this essay of our which occur to an intelligent observer own, as we have known a serious are of less moment than the effect family lulled to sleep by Wesley's ser- which such a work as that before us nion on “ Early Rising." Meanwhile, may have in leading others to observe removable evils are left without any and act.

Yet, the communication of attempt to remove them.

such details is of great value. That What we value most in this volume which the master can do for the comis its direct practical bearing. It is fort of the members of his establishplainly the result of much thought-of ment, and which they cannot, without thought sometimes conveyed in a form his aid, effect for themselves, is the that may, perhaps, lessen its effect at a subject of the third chapter.

The evil of imperfect ventilation Britain, in the imagined case, a memin factories is first mentioned. It is ber of that vast empire, would have clearly the duty of the master to pro- participated in all such plans of imvide against it. It is a case in which

provement ?the workmen not only can do little for themselves, but a peculiarity of the “ To say,” adds our author, “that case is, that health is likely to be in- this would not have been a signal benejured without the cause being even

fit to mankind would be idle : what we suspected. Here is a case for legisla

have to say against the despotic system tive interference. The same necessity

is, that it absorbs private virtue, and or fitness of legislation that every one

suppresses private endeavour; that, admits in the case of party walls, ex

though it may create better machines,

it certainly makes worse men. Now ists here, and would probably be cheer- then to bring these imaginings home; fully submitted to. Regulations with for they do concern us closely. My respect to building need be looked to readers are, to a certain extent, edubut in the first instance, and then the cated; they will have gained by living result of them remains for ever after- in a free state; but if they continue to wards a great gain to health and mo

neglect the welfare of the great mass, rals. One of the first things an em

in respect of education, can they say

that this, the first layer of the nation, ployer of labour, having a just view

the turba Remi, might not almost wish, of his position, has to look to, is the

if they could comprehend the question, health of his men. “ It cannot be his

to live under a despot who would eduduty to study only to make his fabric cate them, rather than with free men cheaper, and not to take any pains to who do not ? Are we to enjoy the sinsee how it can be made to cosť less of gular freedom of speech and action, human life.” The danger of children

which we do enjoy in this country, and being over-worked is mentioned-and to expect to have no sacrifice to make

for it? the duty of the master to consider how

Is liberty, the first of posses

sions, to have no duties corresponding the periods for necessary recreation of

to its invaluable rights? And, in fine, the persons employed is to be apportioned. The thoughtless cruelty of

ought it not to be some drawback on the

enjoyment of our own freedom, if a those who superintend, and those who doubt can come across our minds wheorder the manufactures of millinery, ther a vast mass of our fellow-citizens is adverted to. The poor work girls might not be the better for living under are actually killed in endeavouring to a despotic government ? These are fulfil the tasks exacted from them. very serious questions; and the sooner The next topic on which our author

we are able, with a good conscience, to offers suggestions, is the school-room.

give a satisfactory answer to them, the

better. Till that time, let no man in We have before said, that we do not think any particular suggestions are,

this country say that the education of

the people is nothing to him. or can be, of the same moment, as the “But how strange it is that men spirit in which they are urged, and should require to be urged to this good which is sought to be infused into the work of education. The causing chilmind of the reader. In entering on dren to be taught is a thing so full of this part of his subject, the author joy, of love, of hope, that one wonders supposes the case of imperial Rome,

how such a gladsome path of benevoor some such government, aiming at

lence could ever have been unfrequented. universal dominion, having been alto

The delight of educating is like that of gether successful.

cultivating near the fruitful Nile, where In such an empire secd-time and harvest come so close time would probably have exhibited

together. And when one looks forward some such benevolent emperor as Tra- to the indefinite extension that any efjan or Antonine. Suppose letters to fort in this direction may probably enjoy, have attained such advances as they one is apt to feel as if nothing else were have amongst us, can it be doubted important, and to be inclined to expend that plans of national education would

all one's energies in this one course. have been contemplated, and that in

Indeed, it is hard to estimate the enorthe way in which such a power, as we

mous benefit of enabling a man to comhave imagined, executes its purposes,

mune with the most exalted minds of all

time, to read the most significant rethese plans would be carried into com

cords of all ages, to find that others plete fulfilment, through the length have felt and seen and suffered as himand breadth of the empire, and that self, to extend his sympathy with bis

brother-man, his insight into nature, full bearing. In the religious educa. his knowledge of the ways of God. tion of children, we have to think not Now the above is but a poor description

alone of the present, but of the future; of what the humblest education offers. “ Let us now consider the subject of

and while over-exertion of their facul. • the school-room' more in detail. And

ties is to be guarded against, and what the first remark I have to make is, that

our author seems more to fear, weari. we should perpetually call to mind the ness and impatience, we yei incline to nature of our own thoughts and sensa- think, that in the family circle at least, tions, at the early periods of life in the attendance of the youngest children which those are whom we are trying to should be permitted, though, perhaps, educate. This will make us careful not

not anxiously enforced.

The ques. to weary children with those things

tions which even very young children which we long to impress upon them.

ask, and the true feeling of filial depenThe repetition of words, whatever they

dence which we often observe among may contain, is often like the succession of waves in a receding tide, which makes

them, on that Father, whose children less of an inroad at each pulsation. It

we and they are, give the strongest is different when an idea, or state of encouragement not to shrink from very feeling, is repeated by conduct of various early instruction on such subjects. kinds : that is most impressive. If a However, this is a matter on which child, for instance, is brought up where nothing very definite can be said-s0 there is a pervading idea of any kind, much depends on the child—so much, manifested as it will be in many ways, too, on the parent. the idea is introduced again and again

On this subject, however, we are without wearisomeness, and the child imbibes it unconsciously.

But mere

not quite sure that we are altogether maxims, embracing this idea, would very

just to our author. His observations likely have gained no additional intlu- are expressed in very general terms, ence with him from being constantly and seem of such extensive applicarepeated—that is, at the time; for in tion as to be referrible to the education after years, the maxims may, perhaps, of children under all circumstancesfasten upon his mind with a peculiar indeed, we think, more naturally to strength, simply from their having been

suggest the consideration of the extent often repeated to him at an early period of his life. But at present this repeti

to which religious instruction should

be carried in the domestic education of tion may be of immense disservice. You cannot continue to produce the

children, and how far they may be same effect by words, that you did on

safely permitted to participate in the first using them; and often you go on

forms of family worship when of very hammering about a thing, until you tender years, than what, perhaps, the loosen what was fast in the first in. subject of our author's work ought to stance.”—pp. 83–86.

lead a fair interpreter to regard as his

meaning. If his purpose be, as it The question of religious education probably is, to warn masters against is touched with a delicate and for- countenancing a disposition which is bearing hand. The author fears that too prevalent, to over-burthen poor our insisting on children's attendance factory children with devotional taskat stated devotional exercises is not works, so as to make the Sunday, the unlikely to render that wearisome to day of God's rest, the most dreary and these young and volatile spirits, which we toilsome day in their week, we think wish to make them love. This is plainly be might have used even stronger a question of degree, and we do not language than he has done against know to what extent we can describe what, as tending to deaden the feeling ourselves as agreeing with our author. of religion in these young hearts, is If he mean entirely to exclude children assuredly a great evil. True religion from family prayer and religious ser- is at any age most often a cheerful vices, till they come to years at which sentiment-in childhood is always so. they can be supposed to understand the From this topic the next step in the passages of Scripture read, and the lan- essay is, the fitness of masters conguage of the prayers used by their sidering that the best things to be parents or masters, we cannot but learnt are those which the children differ from him. The condition of all cannot be examined on-this more esinstruction requires assent to proposi- pecially in schools for such children tions not at first understood in their as are from places which cannot be


called homes, where scarcely any thing steal in and say a prayer, or contem. like parental love sustains or informs plate a noble work of art, without paythem, and where, perhaps, confusion,

ing for it: and we shut people up by discontent, and turbulence prevail.”

thousands in dense towns with no outlets It is recommended to encourage

to the country, but those which are lessons in singing, among other rea

guarded on each side by dusty hedges.

Now, an open space near a town is one sons, for the very important one,

of nature's churches, and it is an impethat “it is not much mixed up with

rative duty to provide such things. Nor, emulation." Accomplishments of a indeed, should we stop at giving breathmanual kind are also recommended to ing places to crowded multitudes in be taught, for reasons that will at great towns. To provide cheap locoonce suggest themselves to all, and motion as a means of social improvefor one reason which it is probable that ment, should be ever in the minds of the kind-hearted writer of this book

legislators and other influential persons. will be the first to suggest to many.

Blunders in legislating about railroads,

and absurd expenditure in making them, These accomplishments “ will come in hereafter to embellish a man's home,

are far greater public detriment than

they may seem at first sight. Again, and to endear it to him."

without interfering too much, or at. The next section we transcribe; in

tempting to force a Book of Sports' deed no part of this book admits of

upon the people, who, in that case would easy abridgment. There is seldom or be resolutely dull and lugubrious, the never a word too much, and the co. benevolent employer of labour might louring of the words tells of much that exert himself in many ways to encourage

healthful and instructive amusements does not appear on the surface. The

amongst his men. He might give prizes most valuable part of the instruction

for athletic excellence or skill. He in this book, and still more in a former

might aid in establishing zoological work of the same author is that which

gardens or music meetings, or exhibiis thus suggested :

tions of pictures, or mechanics' insti.

tutes. These are things in which some " THE PLAYGROUND.

of the great employers of labour have “ This is a place quite as important already set him the example. Let him as the school-room. Here it is that a

remember how much his workpeople are large part of the moral cultivation may deprived of by being almost confined be carried on. It is a great object to

to one spot; and let him be the more humanize the conduct of children to each anxious to enlarge their minds by inother at play-times, without interfering

ducing them to take interest in any thing with them, or controlling them too

which may prevent the ignorant premuch. But we have before gone over

sent,' and its low cares, from absorbing the motives which should actuate a

all their attention. He has very likely teacher in his moral guidance : and it some pursuit, or some art, in which he needs only to remark, that the play- takes especial pleasure himself, and ground is a place where that guidance is which gives to his leisure, perhaps, its eminently required, and where the exi- greatest charm : he may be sure there gencies for it are most easily discerned. are many of his people who could be “Those games should not be over

made to share in some degree that plealooked which are of a manly kind, and sure, or pursuit, with him. It is a likely to be continued in after life. This large, a sure, and certainly a most pleabrings us naturally to think of the play- surable beneficence, to provide for the grounds for children of a larger growth. poor such opportunities of recreation, or Hitherto there has been a sad deficiency

means of amusement, as I have menin this matter in our manufacturing

tioned above. Neither can it be set towns, and almost every where else. Can

down as at all a trifling matter. Depend any thing be more lamentable to contem- upon it, that mar has not made any great plate than a dull, grim, and vicious po- progress in humanity who does not care pulation, whose only amusement is sen

for the leisure hours and amusements of suality? Yet, what can we expect, if

his fellow-men,"—pp. 92–95. we provide no means whatever of recrea

The suggestions on the subject of tion; if we never share our own plea

education are followed by a sectionsures with our poorer brethren; and if the public buildings which invite them

certainly the most important in the in their brief hours of leisure are chiefly

volume-entitled “ The Workman's gin palaces? As for our cathedrals and

Home.” Think of all that is expresgreat churches, we mostly have them sed by that word “home”—and estiwell locked up, for fear any one should mate the delicacy and truth of feeling

which suggests to the author the use miliar with the thought of neatnesses of this happy word, home, and which of furniture and dress, is, even because makes him throughout this section of these tastes, likely to become a speak of the comforts and blessings prudent man. He will feel it not so which the very word is sure to suggest. much a question of personal comfort, A builder would have spoken of the as of the degradation of man's nature, houses or cottages-a mere utilitarian to live in the sort of wretchedness in of the dwellings of the labourer. which the savage would, were it not for They know little of the power of lan- the imperious calls of mere animal apguage, who do not feel all the appro- petites, dream out his beastly existpriateness of the true English word, ence. In Ireland we have seldom been home. It has been said that this word, more affected than in going into a and the word " comfort,” have no poor tradesman's cottage where every equivalent in any other language. To thing looked singularly clean and neat. say this would be little, as we believe the On entering ir:to conversation with the assertion to be true of almost any woman of the house, we were told by her word whatever, even of those used to of the exceeding distress and discomfort express natural, and what would seem of every kind in which her family had unchangeable relations ; but the Jived, owing to her husband's conmeaning of those who thus expressed tinual drunkenness, and of the entire themselves was probably this, that the change created by his having given up feeling connected with the words was the whiskey shop. “ He has his home so peculiar to the natives of England, to come to now in the evenings," was as to have it actually impossible to her expression. This was in the early express it by any form of words days of the great reform effected by derived from the language of other one good man. In this case, as in countries--perhaps, too, there was in others, the comfortable home which, their minds the accompanying thought, when his wages ceased to go for whisthat domestic civilization was under- key, the poor man's wife was enabled to stood and felt by the English alone. create for him, completed the work On the creation of the feelings expres- which Father Mathew had begun. “If sed in the words home and comfort, civilization," says our author, "does not but chiefly in the first of these words, show itself in a man's home, where depend the character, nay, the very else is it likely to take much root with nuture-shall we not say so?--of man. him? Make his home comfortable, Our very humanity seems to depend and you do inore towards making him on the feeling. We are not disposed a steady and careful citizen, than you at present to take any illustrations from could by any other means.” the Nomad tribes, or from the circum- It is nonsense to say that this can stances either of savage or barbarian be done by the poor for themselves. life. A less deceptive way of consider- Their houses are built not by theming the subject is to look around us on selves, but for them by their employers. the pictures of wretchedness which Our author urges that a better class of even in the most favoured parts of houses should be built, and that structhese islands, are every where to be tural arrangements often extending to found. Consider for a moment the a whole street, as, for instance, in the difference between the dweller in some case of drainage, and in which, even sordid hovel, and the man accustom- when they are confined to single houses, ed to the decencies of life. In the the actual occupant of the house canfirst case, self-respect, the parent or not almost by possibility effectively inthe nurse of every human virtue, if terfere, should be provided for by the not altogether extinct, is yet wound- legislature-in some cases by compul. ed, and scarce able to live.

A sen

sory enactment, in others that discretence, which we have before quoted tionary powers should be more extenfrom this volume, written in a very sively given than at present, to local affectionate spirit, which urges the authorities. Extracts of several parfitness of instructing the poor in some liamentary reports are given—some of manual art, the effect of which may the most fearful interest. From the afterwards re-appear in the embel- Hand-loom Weavers' Report of 1842, lishment of their habitations, will at transcribe an important senonce lead us to feel that the man, fa



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