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but the master ought not to be led to excess of severity by this statuelike firmness, which is not without its merit. Severe indeed and often reiterated must such punishment be before it really deadens or even diminishes a boy's feeling—and pain can never become a thing indifferent. If a youth can by these repeated liammerings be made comparatively callous to bodily inflictions, with much greater ease may he be inured to scribbling impositions with dogged patience, and ink-encrusted fingers; or gradually find methods of beguiling his hours of solitude in a deserted school-room, till he becomes almost acclimatized to its dusty desolateness. More easily still may be absorb advice till he can absorb no more, and imbibe the medicine of chiding and remonstrance till like other often-repeated doses they quite lose their effect. It is indeed generally speaking only to the more mature that the pains of the mind are more cogent than those of the body, and that imagination shapes our mental afflictions into a thousand forms, and gives to each of them an ever new sting, so that they never lose their stimulus. The mental pains of the young are not complex, and Providence has wisely and kindly ordained that they should not be very continuous. In nine cases out of ten, if traced, they will be found after all to resolve themselves into the fear of some bodily pain, or the dread of the withdrawal of some animal indulgence.
We have now noticed the principal objections to bodily chastisement. To those who admit its propriety some passing remarks may be of service respecting its methods, its abuses, the theory on which it should be administered, and the most proper time for using it. For time, it is by far the most merciful plan to commence with it early, at what Sir Henry Wootton calls, “ the obsequious age when the suppleness of obedience is to be plied by parents,
"'* because, far less severity is then necessary—because a parent or a master is far less likely to be irritated violently with a young than with an older boy; because the sooner rightful authority is asserted, enforced, and understood, the better ; because the boy himself at an early age sooner forgets and forgives; and, though he may not quite so readily see the reason of his punishment, his affection will generally be sooner won back and reconciled by the returning kindness of his master—the delay of two or three years may make quadruple the punishment necessary. It may be proper at sixteen, or even later, to give a summary chastisement in cases of insolence, both for example's sake, and to put a present check upon the evil; but for other purposes bodily castigation at that advanced age is rarely profitable.
“ The management of tiros of eighteent
Is difficult, their punishment obscene.” Some masters have handed such cases over to the school porter. I * Survey of Education. + Cowper's Tirocinium.
1 “The rule of conduct which was prescribed to the students is the more curious, as it affords the first outlines of the form and discipline of a modern university. The studious youth were severely prohibited from wasting their time in feasts, or in the theatre, and the term of their education was limited to twenty. The præfect of the city was empowered to chastise the idle and refractory with stripes and expulsion.”—GIBBON, chap. xxv.
Valentinian, in his famous college, which was in some respects the model of our modern universities, made a civil offence of adult refractoriness, consigning the offenders to be corrected by the præfect of the city. Teachers, by taking such cases in time, might generally spare themselves embarassment; but, to indulge little boys, and to be severe with great ones, is the method too often pursued; the former plan of course making the latter necessary.
The age at which correction is administered affects the question in other ways. The worst faults of young boys require prompt and certain, rather than very severe punishment at long intervals. former method a master's irritability will not so accumulate as to require to vent itself violently-neither will the boy be tempted on by the length of time during which the retribution is impending. The certainty of the punishment will produce more constant care in his mind, and more alacrity in the act of self-correction, where the fault is one of carelessness, or want of attention. We have no fancy for black looks, and for long accounts to be defrayed in full at an undefined time. Many a lad will bear his grand flogging with the horrible flaggellum once a month, whose resolution would give way under the incessant annoyance of being punished, moderately, but with unfailing punctuality, every time he really deserves it. Nor do we approve of ihose very long lectures which some masters use as immediate precursors to castigation.
• I would have no man think me so ungoverned,
Or subject to my passion, but I can
Of doing the business.” They call this cooling themselves. How admirable to them must appear the ceremonious practice of Jewish fathers at Constantinople, who, as Miss Pardoe tells us, consult the elders of the Synagogue before they whip their boys.f The fact is, that a master ought to be able to command himself in punishment, at the very moment of provocation; there is something pitiful in violent wrath against young boys, for merely boyish faults. But some teachers object to brief and frequent punishment, on account of the trouble which it gives. To such we would commend the admirable words of a living writer, “ in punishing let not a man consult his anger, nor in remitting punishment, his ease." I
Again, with reference to persistance in punishment in refractory cases, Dr. Johnson's opinion may be worth quoting, both as it respects the kind of punishment which we have been advocating, and the extent of perseverance which he considered justifiable.
“ As good things become evil by excess, correction by being immoderate may become cruel. But when is correction immoderate? When it is more
* Ben Jonson, Magnetic Lady, Act III., Scene 5.
frequent, or more severe, than is required ad monendum, et docendum, for reformation and instruction. No severity is cruel which obstinacy makes necessary; for the greatest cruelty would be to desist, and leave the scholar too careless for instruction, and too hardened for reproof. Locke, in his treatise on Education, mentions a mother with applause who whipped an infant eight times before she had subdued it; for, had she stopped at the seventh act of correction her daughter, says he, would have been ruined. The degrees of obstinacy in young minds are very different; as different must be the degrees of persevering severity. A stubborn scholar must be corrected till he is subdued. The discipline of a school is military. There must be either unbounded licence, or absolute authority. The inaster who punishes, not only consults the future happiness of him who is the immediate subject of correction, but he propagates obedience through the whole school and establishes regularity by exemplary justice."*
We would, with all deference, somewhat modify these oracles. As a general rule it is better to take no notice of sullenness unless it degenerates into downright impertinence. Let it work itself off, which it is the more likely to do the less you appear to observe it. When the punishment has been given, let the fault be forgiven, and as far as it is possible let master and boy start fair again. It is very desirable that a master should have this faculty of thus discharging faults. Even in cases of obstinacy the most trying of all, do not let a master make a principle of persevering in correction till he fancies he has expelled the evil spirit; this he probably will not do; at the time, without losing his own temper, and using excessive violence. The cane may easily become the conductor of malignity from the boy to the master.f Let the latter administer a sharp correction, and remove the temptation at once, if possible, hy dismissing the boy from his presence for the time. Should there be a recurrence, let him make use again of exactly the same process, and his point will probably be gained at last. Let it satisfy him, (without obtaining a present conquest,) that the boy knows he could punish him more severely and persistingly if he chose. The best way of commanding a boy's temper is, to show that you can command your own. Nothing is more injurious to the dignity of the master in the eyes of the lookers on than a boy in an attitude of perhaps successful defiance, and the master himself in a passion; nothing more injurious to the boy himself, than a long-sustained opposition of the will. The habit of mind formed by conscious and continued resistance of this kind is extremely bad. The wills of governor and governed are sure to clash occasionally, but avoid, as far as is consistent with your office, all that you know to be peculiarly exciting causes. Chapman, in one of his plays, introduces the following advice to royalty, and excellent it is for all in authority.
“In all things governed, their infirmities
Should not be stirred or wrought on.”I
* Boswell's Life of Johnson.
Confirmant ictu.---LUCAN. IV. 249.
ON HISTORY. History has been somewhere said to be " philosophy teaching by examples.” Moreover, a well-known and popular historian of our own day has declared, that“ in a country like this, where almost every one is called upon to take a part in politics, no species of knowledge is more indispensable than history; and then adds, " under the guidance of sound sense, without which it is of little avail, it is our surest protection against wild political theory, and enables us to think and act with confidence and security in public emergencies.” Now, without subscribing implicitly to this last sentiment, it will be admitted on all hands that a sound knowledge of history is an integral, interesting, and highly useful portion of a good education. The question therefore to which we are anxious to call attention in the present paper is, How can a sound knowledge of history be acquired ?
It is plain that the first requisite towards this end is a supply of good books. In this respect, however, the rising generation are much more fortunate than their forefathers. Perhaps no department of literature in this country has received more valuable additions during the last twenty years.
Nor is it needful to mention instances. But good books being given, how are they to be turned to the best account? Will the mere reading them over page by page answer the purpose? We are compelled to say we think not. Well do we remember in our own case, that while at twelve two or three historical catechisms had been committed to memory so that every word was known at the time, at sixteen the whole of it, or nearly so, had vanished; though they were carefully and attentively, not even hurriedly got up, the examinations were diversified and minute, and the prize-books duly received and admired. When history was wanted for real use, the acquisition had to be begun de novo, and on a new system; and many a year was it before there was realized anything like a filling up of the deficiency thus occasioned by taking for granted that so much of historical knowledge had been gained.
But to leave a particular case, our belief, founded on considerable experience, is, that boys generally know a great deal less in this department of knowledge, not only than they ought, but than is generally supposed. We are very much disposed to think they are inferior in this respect to girls. The reason seems to be, partly that this kind of knowledge is taken for granted, especially in the case of boys pretty well advanced in other reading--partly that, when this reason does not hold, the pupil is told, it may be, from time to time to get up
his history, but no pains are taken to investigate or encourage his progress: or, lastly, when an earnest endeavour is made and the history of Greece, Rome, or England is proposed as the subject of examination and compliments and prizes, the work is got up for the occasion-it serves the occasion—and then ceases to form part of the stock-in-trade. It lacks the power of self-existence or reproduction; it is without the faculty of growth, without vitality. Jonah's gourd is a fit emblem of this kind of operation. Sometimes, and this is a capital though a very natural error, some portion of history is set to be got up during a Christmas vacation ; and the end is that all history from that time is looked upon as a bore; and an “indispensable" species of knowledge becomes a dead letter, if not a disgust, to the future politician; or at all events, a most interesting and valuable birthright is avoided and neglected by him who is, or is intended to be, a useful and respectable member of society.
We are led to conclude, therefore, that history should be made an integral, not an accidental part of education ; that it should form a real, substantial portion of almost every-day's work, not a short-lived effort now and then ; should become a profitable acquirement, not a string of mere facts ; should be the business of school-hours and attended to in school, not or not merely of vacations and play-hours. We wish to make a suggestion or two, to explain our meaning, premising that we have classical schools particularly in our mind. Cæsar's Commentaries are or ought to be very early put into a boy's hands. While reading Cæsar let him be taught, from the best books on history, all that is known of Cæsar himself, as well as of the places and towns mentioned in his writings. Let him read such portions from time to time to the master or the master to him. In many schools even the act of reading would have its use; in grammar schools it is too little practised. The Latin and the history read together will explain and illustrate one another. The pupil will be interested in both, will understand both; and the knowledge thus acquired will therefore in all probability be his as long as he lives. Soon he is able to read Cicero. Along with the Orations against Catiline let him read Keightley's and other histories where they treat of that remarkable man and his times. The Pro Lege Maniliâ opens up Pompey and the eastern provinces of the empire; and Pompey serves to connect the present author and subjects with his great rival Cæsar. The twentyfirst book of Livy introduces him to Hannibal, the Scipios, and all the Punic wars : allusions here and there carefully followed up will have brought before his notice the other most eminent men in Roman story, especially the Gracchi, Marius, and Sylla. Supposing him to read also Sallust's Bellum Jugurthinum, which calls attention to a new set of nations and to a different quarter of the globe; the student will have become sufficiently interested in these several biographies to be anxious of himself to know how all these people were connected together, and reading of a more regular kind may now be resorted to with profit. We do not mean that the usual modes are to be excluded ; but we do think that this plan would be likely to give something more of life and vigour to the course, and that what was got would be more real and available: that in this way history would more fully discharge her office and remind us more frequently of her boast that she is “philosophy teaching by examples.” Virgil and Ovid would of course give animation, as far as might be desirable, to the old mythological legends and to the earlier accounts of ancient Rome, We may observe in passing, that geography and chronology, the bandmaids of history, would be most easily acquired along with the history, and be thereby rendered more active, ready, and healthy. It need scarcely be added that Grecian history is capable of being treated in like manner and with the like results. Begin with the Anabasis of Xenophon and let the pupil make acquaintance with Cyrus and the retreat of the Greeks. A