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consulted, the demands of duty fulfilled, and the dictates of benevolence obeyed, there will yet be hours remaining unoccupied; hours for which no specific employment has yet been provided. For fuch hours it is not the intention of these pages to prescribe any specific employment. What if some space be assigned to the useful and. elegant arts of female industry? But is industry to possess them all? Let the innocent amusements which home furnishes claim their share. It is a claim which shall cheerfully be allowed. Do amusements abroad offer their pretensions? Neither shall they, on proper occasions, be unheard. A wellregulated life will never know a vacuum sufficient to require an immoderate share of public amusements to fill it.
CHÁ P. XI.. CONSIDERATIONS ANTECEDENT TO
.." MARRIAGE :
In the preceding pages, which have had an evident and primary reference to the situation of unmarried women, I have been under the necessity of speaking largely concerning various duties, which appertain equally to those who are no longer single. I have therefore to entreat the reader, if of the latter description, still to regard the foregoing part of this treatise as addressed also to herself; if of the former, to believe herself, even at present, concerned in many of the subsequent observations, though they should seem to refer solely to a condition of life into which she has not yet entered.
It will be proper, however, before the duties of a married woman are particu
larised, larised, to be explicit concerning some points, on attention to which the probability of happiness in matrimonial life radically de. pends.
The prospect of passing a single month with an acquaintance, whose society we know to be unpleasing, is a prospect from which every mind recoils. Were the time of intercourse antecedently fixed to extend to a year, or to a longer period, our repugnance would be proportionally great. Were the term to reach to the death of one of the parties, the evil would appear in foresight scarcely to be endured. But further ; let it be supposed, not only that the parties were to be bound during their joint lives to the society of each other ; but that their interests were to be inseparably blended together in all circumstances. And, in the next place, let it also be supposed that the two parties were not to engage in this association on terms! of perfect equality ; but that one of them was necessarily to be placed as to various
particulars, in a state of subordination to the other. What caution would be requisite in each of the parties, what especial caution would be requisite in the party destined to subordination, antecedently to such an engagement! How diversified, how strict, how persevering should be the inquiries of each respecting the other, and especially of the latter respecting the former! Unless the dispositions, the temper, the habits, the genuine character, and inmoft principles were mutually known; what rational hope, what tolerable chance of happiness could subsift? And if happiness should not be the lot of the two associates, would not their disquietudes be proportionate to the closeness of their union? Let this reasoning be transferred to the case of marriage.
Whether marriage establishes between the husband and the wife a perfect equality of rights, or conveys to the former a certain degree of superiority over the latter, is a point not left among Christians to be decided by fpeculative arguments. The intimation of the divine will, communicated to the first woman immediately after the fall, is corroborated by various injunctions de livered in the New Testament. « Let the “ wife see that fhereverence her husband." “ Wives, submit yourselves unto your own “ husbands as unto the Lord; for the huf“ band is the head of the wife, even as “ Christ is the head of the church;~-there“ fore as the church is fubject unto Chrift, « so let the wives be to their own husbands “ in every thing (o).” The command in the second of these passages is so explicit, and illustrated by a comparison fo impressive, that it is needless to recite other texts of a similar import. The obedience, however, which is here enjoined by the Apostle, is not unlimited obedience. Were a husband presumptuously to require his wife to infringe the property or other rights