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to convince you that there was neither learning nor labor employed in the work for which they solicit your praise. Alas! the judicious eye too soon perceives it! though it does not perceive that native strength and mother wit, which in works of real genius make some amends for the negligence which yet they do not justify. But instead of extolling these effusions for their facility, it would be kind in friends rather to blame them for their crudeness; and when the young candidates for fame are eager to prove in how short a time such a poem has been struck off, it would be well to regret that they had not either taken a longer time, or refrained from writing at all; as in the former case the work would have been less defective, and in the latter the writer would have discovered more humility and self-distrust.
FEMALE ROMANCE.-MRS. SANDFORD.
Most women are inclined to be romantic. This tendency is not confined to the young or to the beautiful; to the intellectual or to the refined. Every woman capable of strong feeling is susceptible of romance; and though its degree may depend on external circumstances, or education, or station, or excitement, it generally exists, and requires only a stimulus for its develop
Romance is, indeed, the charm of female character. Without it no woman can be interesting; and though its excess is a weakness, and one which receives but little indulgence, there is nothing truly generous or disinterested, which does not imply its existence. It is that poetry of sentiment which imparts to character or incident something of the beautiful or the sublime; which elevates us to a higher sphere; which gives an ardor to affection, and a life to thought, and a glow to imagination; and which lends so warm and sunny a hue to the portraiture of life, that it ceases to appear the vulgar, and cold, and dull, and monotonous reality, which common sense alone would make it.
But it is this opposition between romance and sobriety that excites so strong a prejudice against the former. It is associated in the minds of many with felly alone. A romantic, silly girl is the object of their contempt; and they so recoil from this personification of sentiment, that their chief object seems to be to divest themselves altogether of its delusion. Life is
to them a mere calculation; expediency is their maxim,-propriety, their rule,-profit, ease, or comfort, their aim; and they have at least this advantage,—that while minds of higher tone, and hearts of superior sensibility, are often harassed and wounded, and even withered, in their passage through life, they proceed in their less adventurous career, neither chilled by the coldness, nor sickened by the meanness, nor disappointed by the selfishness of the world. They virtually admit, though they often theoretically deny, the baseness of human nature, and, strangers to disinterestedness themselves, they do not expect to meet with it in others. They are content with a low degree of enjoyment, and are thus exempted from much poig nant suffering; and it is only when the casualties of life interfere with their individual ease, that we can perceive that they are not altogether insensible.
A good deal of this phlegmatic disposition exists in many who are capable of higher feeling. Such persons are so afraid of sensibility, that they repress in themselves every thing that savors of it; and though we may occasionally detect it in the mounting flush, or in the glistening tear, or in the half-stifled sigh, it is in vain that we endeavor to elicit any more explicit avowal. They are ashamed even of what they do betray; and one would imagine, that the imputation of sensibility were almost a reflection on their character. They must not feel, or, at least, they must not allow that they feel; for feeling has led so many persons wrong, that decorum can be preserved, they think, only by indifference. And they end in becoming really as callous as they wish to appear; and stifle emotion so successfully, that at length it ceases to give them uneasiness.
Such is often the case with many who pass through life with great decorum; and though women have naturally more sensibility than the other sex, they too, sometimes, consider its indulgence altogether wrong. Yet, if its excess be foolish, it is surely a mistake to attempt to suppress it altogether; for such attempt will either produce a dangerous revulsion, or, if successful, will spoil the character. One would rather, almost, that a woman were ever so romantic, than that she always thought, and felt, and spoke by rule; and should deem it preferable that her sensibility brought upon her occasional distress, than that she always calculated the degree of her feeling.
Life has its romance, and to this it owes much of its charm. It is not that every woman is a heroine, and every individual history a novel; but there are scenes and incidents in real life
so peculiar, and often so poetic, that we need not be indebted to fiction for the development of romance. Christians will trace such scenes and incidents immediately to Providence, and they do so with affectionate and confiding hearts; and the more affecting or remarkable these may be, the more clearly do they recognize the Divine interference. They regard them as reminiscences of heaven, to recall to them their connection with it, and remind them, that whatever there may be to interest or excite their feelings here, there is infinitely more to affect and warm their hearts in the glorious and glowing prospects beyond.
It is natural that women should be very susceptible to such impressions; that they should view life with almost a poetic eye; and that they should be peculiarly sensitive to its vicissitudes. And though a Quixotic quest after adventures is as silly as it is vain; and to invest every trifle with importance, or to see something marvelous in every incident, is very preposterous: there is no reason why the imagination should not grasp whatever is picturesque, and the mind dwell upon whatever is impressive, and the heart warm with whatever is affecting in the changes and chances of our pilgrimage. There is, indeed, a great deal of what is low and mean in whatever is connected with this world,-quite enough to sully the most glowing picture; but let us sometimes view life with its golden tints,-let us sometimes taste its ambrosial dews,-let us sometimes breathe its more ethereal atmosphere: and let us do so, not as satisfied with any thing it can afford,—not as entranced by any of its illusions; but as those who catch, even in this dull mirror, a shadowy delineation of a brighter world, and who pant for what is pure, celestial, and eternal. This is surely better than clipping the wings of imagination, or restraining the impulses of feeling, or reducing all our joys and sorrows to mere matters of calculation or of sense.
They are indeed to be pitied, who err in the opposite extreme -whose happiness or misery is entirely ideal; but we have within us such a capacity of both, independent of all outward circumstances, and such a power of extracting either from every circumstance, that it is surely wiser to discipline such a faculty, than to disallow its influence.
Youth is, of course, the season for romance. Its buoyant spirit must soar, till weighed down by earthly care. It is in youth that the feelings are warm, and the fancy fresh; and that. there has been no blight to chill the one or to wither the other.
And it is in youth that hope lends its cheering ray, and love its genial influence; and that our friends smile upon us, and our companions do not cross us, and our parents are still at hand to cherish us in their bosoms, and sympathize in all our young and ardent feelings. It is then that the world seems so fair, and our fellow-men so kind, that we charge with spleen any who would prepare us for disappointment; and accuse those of misanthropy who would warn our too confiding hearts. And though in maturer life we may smile at the romance of youth, and lament, perhaps, its aberrations, yet must we often regret the depth of our young emotions, the disinterestedness of our young affections, and that enthusiasm of purpose which, alas! we soon grow too wise to cherish.
Young women are peculiarly liable to enthusiasm of every kind. They are so gentle, and so tender, and so imaginative; and they have often so much leisure to indulge in reveries and ecstasies, that it is not to be wondered at that they should be occasionally somewhat visionary. Yet their extravagance has contributed more than any thing else to bring discredit upon sentiment. Its affectation often sickens more even than its folly. It is so distressing to see a young woman sighing, and weeping, and dreaming away her existence; one moment in a hysteric, and another in a faint; always getting up a scene, or supporting a part, that one is almost prepared to accede to any tirade against sentiment, the caricature of which is so truly absurd. Young women should be taught the folly of sentimentalism. They should be taught, that though it is a very right thing, and a very serious thing, to feel, it is a very wrong thing and a very silly thing to be languishing and affected. They should learn to look at life through a faithful medium; to see its long perspective in all its true variety of light and shade, of what is beautiful and what is depressing. And if, even while they allow the preponderance to the latter, their eye will still seek out and linger on some few bright spots, and their young anticipations will scarcely submit to be sobered by any thing but by their own experience, they should, on this account especially, learn to stretch their view beyond this earthly prospect, to rest their sight upon a far distant land, where there is, indeed, every thing to transport, and every thing to satisfy; where there are scenes too vivid for imagination to paint, and pleasures too sublime for intellect to conceive.
OF EDUCATION IN A REPUBLICAN GOVERNMENT.-MONTESQUIEU.
It is in a republican government that the whole power of education is required. The fear of despotic governments rises naturally of itself, amidst threats and punishments; the horror of monarchies is favored by the passions, and favors them in its turn; but virtue is a self renunciation, which is always' arduous and painful. This virtue may be defined the love of the laws and of our country. As this love requires a constant preference of public to private interest, it is the source of all particular virtues; for they are nothing more than this very preference itself. This love is peculiarly proper to democracies. In these alone the government is intrusted to private citizens. Now government is like every thing else; to preserve it, we must love it. Has it ever been heard that kings were not fond of monarchy, or that despotic princes hated arbitrary power? Every thing, therefore, depends on establishing this love in a republic, and to inspire it ought to be the principal business of education; but the surest way of instilling it into children, is for parents to set them an example. People have it generally in their power to communicate their ideas to their children; but they are still better able to transfuse their passions. If it happens otherwise, it is because the impressions made at home are effaced by those they have received abroad. It is not the young people that degenerate: they are not spoiled till those of mature age are already sunk into corruption.
ON STUDIES.-LORD BACON.
Studies serve for delight, for ornament, and for ability. Their chief use for delight, is in privateness and retiring; for ornament, is in discourse; and for ability, is in the judgment and disposition of business; for expert men can execute, and perhaps judge of particulars, one by one: but the general coun