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6 manners' of the Second Charles and his Court; but we shall venture to remind Mr. Wright, that to the first of those periods belonged Milton, and to the second, Dryden ; and that those great masters both of poetry and prose, have not been surpassed in their peculiar excellencies, by any of their suc
We shall not feel it expedient to quote Mr. Wi's comments upon the English language, any further than to apprise our readers that he is of opinion that it is susceptible
of very considerable melody and harmony,' and that it com< bines the percussion of the harpsichord with the prolongation
the majestic swell of the organ.' The following paragraph is, however, much too valuable to be lost; and we cite it as a fine specimen of common place, aiming at affecting profundity, and gucceeding in making itself nearly unintelligible.
* Very little consideration will convince the student, that phraseology is composed of certain members or clauses which modify, and of others which are modified ; and, by attending to oral discourse, he will easily discover that there is a characteristic feature of the voice, in the pronunciation of a proposition, which indicates either continuation or completion. As therefore the less signification of one or more clauses may be restrained or altered, by the power and influence of others more significant; so in the delivery of them, that the progress and completion of a whole passage may be gradually conveyed to the ear, the attention must be kept alive, by suitable degrees of suspension in the voice. If from this we take a more enlarged view of oral sounds, we shall find, that, in the arrangement of diffuse periods, there may be members signifying completeness as to meaning which have certain degrees of intonation; and which, to indicate their just relations to a whole, terminate with proportionate qualities of voice.' pp. 41, 42.
We had marked inany parts of this volume for quotation and cominent, and we could certainly derive considerable amusement from the prosecution of our original intention; but we want the space for more profitable purposes, and we shall decline following the Author through the protasis and apodosis of
comparative phraseology.' We must, however, in justice to Mr Wright, remark, that we attribute much of the inefficiency of this book to his affectation of system, and bis ambitious aiming at philosophical diction. Though his theory is covered with the veil of Isis, and though his hieroglyphics remind us of the Tomb of Alexander, yet we ihink that we can collect, from our imperfect glimpses of his meaning, that his practice is sound, and consequently that his principles are correct; we are disposed to think well of him as an instructer, though we cannot admire him as an author: many of his minor suggestions are judicious, and expressed in simple and intelligible language.
Art. X. Les Jeunes Vendéens : ou Le Frére et la Sæur : Relation
de Faits Veritables pour la Jeunesse. Par feu Madame Bernard.
12mo. pp. 176. 4s. 1818. THI
THIS is a very interesting narrative. The scenery, the pro
vincial manners, and the outline of events, are represen, tations of facts as they actually existed in La Vendée, in the most ferocious times of the Revolution. The simplicity of the honest but superstitious rustics, the grotesque mixture of pride and fatherly condescension in the seigneurs, the chivalrous heroism of the young men, and the unshaken fidelity of many in the poorest ranks and under the strongest temptations, -are, we have been assured, the mere pictures of truth. Of the story some parts are made up, for the filling up and effect of the whole; but its basis is laid in the circumstances of calamity and terror, of wild adventure, and of wonderful deliverances, in which the Author and her friends were the personal actors. That Author was Madame Bernard, who died lately, and left an orphan daughter born during the refugee state of her parents in England. She lost her father, an officer of the Vendéan Royalists, in her earliest infancy. The style is lively, flowing, and tender; and the moral principles of the work are just and pure, abating the hoinage to the errors of Popery, of which some traces are occasionally visible. Art. XI. Choir de Lecture pour les Jeunes Gens, ou, Morceaux Choisis
des Meilleurs Ecrivains des Deux derniers siécles. Par S. B. Moens.
12mo. pp. 386. 58. 6d. 1818. AMONG the multitude of selections from French writers,
, for the use of schools, this volume appears to us entitled to the palm of distinguished excellence. Judgement and taste are displayed in the kind of passages selected, both as to topics and style, in a higher degree than we have often observed in similar publications. About half the volume is prosaic; the rest consists of poetical pieces. The passages are in general such as will be pleasing by their novelty to most young readers, as there are none of the old and oft-repeated anecdotes with wbich well educated youths are familiar; the subjects are much diversified and extremely entertaining, and a very large proportion of the extracts are from the most elegant and useful modern authors of France. It is, also, no small commendation to a work of this nature, that its moral tendency is uniformly good, that it contains nothing which could wound the most delicate mind, or create a prejudice against pune and scriptural religion. Of this we have not only the evidence of our own inspection, for we cannot, indeed, profess to have read every page, but a satisfactory pledge in the well known piety and Christian character of the benevolent Compiler.
Art. XII. 1. Reciprocal Duties of Parents and Children. By Mrs.
Taylor, Author of Maternal Solicitude, Practical Hints, &c. 12mo.
pp. 176. Price 5s. 1818. 2. Correspondence between a Mother and her Daughter at School. By
Mrs. Taylor, Author of Maternal Solicitude, &c. and Miss Taylor,
Author of Display, &c. Third Edition. Price 5s. 1818. A
VERY few words only, beyond the simple transcription of
the title pages, will be necessary, in order to recommend these publications to our readers. The estimable Authors, Mother and Daughter, have got, indeed, considerably the start of us with the public, one of the works being already in its third edition. The same soundness of understanding, the same simplicity of mind and correct feeling, as obtained for Mrs. Taylor's first unostentatious volume an instant yet permanent popularity, have been displayed throughout the series to which these may be considered as belonging ; and it is no small merit to have fairly won that popularity, by means so free from stratagem. To be didactic through even a small volume with out being dull, to present obvious truths without incurring the charge of triteness, and to preserve throughout, a style which without ever sparkling into antithesis, or assuming the stateliness of axiom, leads on the reader imperceptibly by its ease and neatness, require, we think, more talent than suffices to give plausi: bility to much more lofty pretensions. The valuable qualities of mind which are evinced in such a work, are perhaps, not less rare than what is generally understood by the term, genius, and certainly not less efficient for the business of instruction. Mrs. Taylor writes with the air of a person who thoroughly knows what she undertakes to impart, and wlio has but one object in view, in writing it, namely, to make others the wiser and the better for her experience and reflection.
The volume entitled “ Reciprocal Duties of Parents, and “@bildren" may be considered as a sequel to the “ Practical “ Hints to a young Mistress of a Family.” It is designed to rectify some of those common practical mistakes, which are so fatal to parental influence, and so destructive of domestic happiness. The Author commences her work by insisting upon mutual
respect between parents and children, as essentially important. Family harmony and self will are the next topics, which it might seem impossible to treat of in a manner very novel or interesting : without aiming at this, Mrs. Taylor steps at once into the interior of the family, and tells the whole truth of what is passing there, with a plainness which comes home to the feelings, in a very different way from general reflections. In the chapter ' on some mistakes in education, the Author points out the necessity of directing the first assault against that principle of selfishness, to which, in many families, such costly sacrifices are made. We have then the following remarks:
. With what an egregious mistake are those parents chargeable, who foster in their children the spirit of party, of bigotry, and of intolerance ! Their notions, their party, their sect (as if the world and their own depraved nature did not furnish them with materials enough) must be put in requisition to complete the character, and stamp it altogether unamiable. How disgusting to hear a little bigot, or party-man, prating about whom he is for, and whom he is against; although he knows not why or wherefore! Yet this intolerant spirit has sometimes found its way into public seminaries, and occasioned the most disgraceful divisions. Is this the method parents take to promote their children's happiness, or the public weal? Do they forget that God is love, and that his express command is, that we love one another? It is not from such discordant materials as these, that the true citizen, the true patriot, and what is still more, the true Christian, can be formed. He is actuated by principles of universal philanthropy; the divine precepts of the Gospel, which are the rule of bis conduct, are in direct opposition to such a temper. “ Not," as Dr. Watts observes," that it is at all amiss in parents to train
their children in their own forms of worship, at least, so far as any of their peculiar opinions enter into their forms of public worship." It is hardly possible to avoid this, for religion cannot be practised, but it must be in some particular mode ; therefore children must be educated in some forms, and opinions, and modes of worship; and it is the duty of parents lo educate them in those ways which they think nearest the truth, and most pleasing to God. But all that I mean, here is this, that as I would not have these particulars of different sects to enter into the public practice of religion further than is needful; so it should be far the greatest care and solicitude of parents to teach their children Christianity itself, rather than the particular and distinguishing tenets of sects and parties.'
In these sentiments we fully coincide ; in the Author's mind they doubtless rest upon actual observation. We have no doubt, however, of her going along with us in the opinion, that to instruct ehildren respecting the grounds ofeven those distinguish -ing tenets as held by their parents, is not the way to form within them the spirit of bigotry. Bigotry, like anger, is the instinct of a weak mind conscious of its weakness, and fearful of having its opinions wrested from its hold. Ignorance is weakness, and even in a well-informed mind, a partial ignorance respecting any particular subjects of opinion, is often attended by a sense of insecurity, which gives rise to the tetchiness of party spirit. Boys, as well as men, those children of a larger growth, are prompted to identify themselves with a purty, just for want of feeling able to stand by themselves on the ground assumed. There is as much cowardice in intolerance of every kind, as there is evil disposition, and we all are apt to feel cowards in the dark.
It would be in many cases exceedingly difficult to make particular truths of minor importance, assume an illusive magDitude of proportion, if they were brought out distinctly into the view of mind. We think that a child taught from his
infancy, the grounds of even his parent's party opinions and sectarian prejudices, would be far less likely to grow up into a bigot, than one from whose attention, as a subject of instruction, they were carefully withheld. Not, indeed, that we would have the school-room, much less the nursery, the scene of a premature initiation into polemics of any kind. A child may be instructed concerning controverted points, (and controverted points cannot be wholly excluded, but by giving up the essential doctrines of Christianity) without his being suffered to view them as the matter of controversy : he may be told what is true, and why it is true, without having his attention diverted, and the simplicity of his feelings disturbed by the unnecessary exposure of what is not true. No general rules can supersede the necessity on the part of the parent, of exercising a wise discretion ; but upon all subjects on which it is inevitable for the child to bave some notions and some prejudices, it can never be unsafe or unwise, to instil such information as may enable him afterwards to give an answer to every one that asketh for a reason concerning the faith and the hope which he has derived from parental instruction.
It is not, we imagine, the most prominent defect in the domestic education of the present day, to induce in the winds of children an undue preference for particular opinions and modes of worship. Our observation would incline us to believe that the danger is of an opposite kind. Those tenets and principles with respect to one great branch of practical religion, by an attachment to which our Dissenting ancestors were distinguished, have been but too often discarded altogether as subjects of instruction, both in the parlour and in the pulpit, under the general head of matters of doubtful disputation. The little Churchman, or the little Dissenter, who is taught to assume either name as a badge of distinction, is in the fair road to become either a bigot or a sceptic; but as charity is a grace which has its seat in the temper rather than in the intellect, we cannot conceive that any portion of sound information, judiciously conveyed, is likely to endanger its existence, or to aggravate the force of educational prejudice.
If, however, there be any individuals who feel reluctant that their children should bave their consciences fettered by such scruples and prejudices respecting certain, minor points of opinion, as might stand in the way of advantageous compliances in after life, although they are scruples and prejudices of which they cannot divest themselves, they assuredly act wisely in keeping the subject entirely out of sight as confessedly unimportant, in order that the candid and unsophisticated mind of the young inquirer may be at liberty to adopt such modes of