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ever visits any person of quality ? much less makes an acquaintance with such, from whose conversation he may learn what is good breeding in that country, and what is worth observation in it; though from such persons it is, one may learn more in one day, than in a year's rambling from one inn to another. Nor indeed is it to be wondered; for men of worth and parts will not easily admit the familiarity of boys, who yet need the care of a tutor: though a young gentleman and stranger, appearing like a man, and showing a desire to inform himself in the customs, manners, laws, and government of the country he is in, will find welcome assistance and entertainment amongst the best and most knowing persons every where, who will be ready to receive, encourage, and countenance any ingenious and inquisitive foreigner.
209. This, how true soever it be, will not, I fear, alter the custom which has cast the time of travel upon the worst part of a man's life; but for reasons not taken from their improvement. The young lad must not be ventured abroad at eight or ten, for fear of what may happen to the tender child, he then runs ten times less risk than at sixteen or eighteen. Nor must he stay at homo till that dangerous heady age be over, because he must be back again by oneand-twenty, to marry and propagate. The father can not stay any longer for the portion, nor the mother for a new set of babies to play with; and so my young master, whatever comes on it, must have a wife looked out for him, by that time he is of age; though it would be no prejudice to his strength, his parts, or his issue, if it were respited for some time, and he had leave to get, in years and knowledge, the start a little of bis children, who are often found to tread too near upon the heels of their fathers, to the no great satisfaction either of son or father. But the young gentleman being got within view of matrimony, it is time to leave him to his mistress.
CONCLUSION. 210. Though I have now come to a conclusion of what obvious remarks have suggested to me concerning education, I would not have it thought that I look on it as a just treatise on this subject. There are a thousand other things that may need consideration ; especially if one should take in the various tempers, different inclinations, and particular defaults, that are to be found in children; and prescribe proper remedies. The variety is so great, that it would require a volume; nor would that reach it. Each man's mind has some peculiarity, as well as his face, that distinguishes him from all others; and there are possibly scarce two children, who can be conducted by exactly the same method. Besides that, I think a prince, a nobleman, and an ordinary gentleman's son, should have different ways of breeding. But having had here only some general views in reference to the main end and aims in education, and those designed for a gentleman's son, whom being then very little, I considered only as white paper, or wax, to be molded and fashioned as one pleases; I have touched little more than those heads, which I judged necessary for the breeding of a young gentleman of his condition in general; and have now published these my occasional thoughts, with this hope, that, though this be far from being a complete treatise on this subject, or such as that every one may find what will just fit his child in it; yet it may give some small light to those, whose concern for their dear little ones makes them so irregularly bold, that they dare venture to consult their own reason in the education of their children, rather than wholly to rely upon old custom.
THOUGHTS ON EDUCATION.
BELECTED FROM PUBLICATIONS BY HERBERT SPENCER.
I. PHYSICAL EDUCATION.
IMPORTANCE OF PHYSICAL TRAINING.
1. To conform the regimen of the nursery and the school to the established truths of modern science this is the desideratum. It is time that the benefits which our sheep and oxen have for years past derived from the investigations of the laboratory, should be participated in by our children. Without calling in question the great importance of horse-training and pig-feeding, we would sug. gest that, as the rearing of well-grown men and women is also of some moment, the conclusions indicated by theory, and indorsed by practice, ought to be acted on in the last casa as in the first. Probably not a few will be startled-—-perhaps offended-by this collocation of ideas. But it is a fact not to be disputed, and to which we had best reconcile ourselves, that man is subject to the same organic laws as inferior creatures. No anatomist, no physiologist, no chemist, will for a moment hesitate to assert, that the general principles which rule over the vital processes in animals equally rule over the vital processes in man. And a candid admission of this fact is not without its reward: namely, that the truths established by observation and experiment on brutes, become more or less available for human guidance. Rudimentary as is the Science of Life, it has already attained to certain fundamental principles underlying the development of all organisms, the human included. That which has now to be done, and that which we shall endeavor in some measure to do, is to show the bearing of these fundamental principles upon the physical training of childhood and youth.
2. That over-feeding and under-feeding are both bad, is a truism. Of the two, however, the last is the worst. As writes a high authority," the effects of casual repletion are less prejudicial, and more easily corrected, than those of inanition.”+ Add to which, that where there has been no injudicious inter. ference, repletion will seldom occur. “Excess is the vice rather of adults than of the young, who are rarely either gourmands or epicures, unless through the fault of those who rear them."† This system of restriction which many parents think so necessary, is based upon very inadequate observation, and very erroneous reasoning. There is an over-legislation in the nursery, as well as an overlegislation in the state; and one of the most injurious forms of it is this limitation in the quantity of food.
From an article in the British Quarterly Review-republished as Chapter IV., in “Educa tion-Intellectual, Moral and Physical." Appleton. 1861.
t" Cyclopedia of Practical Medicine.” 1 Ib.
“But are children to be allowed to surfeit themselves? Shall they be suffered to take their fill of dainties and make themselves ill, as they certainly will do ?" As thus put, the question admits of but one reply. But as thus put, it assumes the point at issue. We contend that, as appetite is a good guide to all the lower creation—as it is a good guide to the infant—as it is a good guide to the invalid—as it is a good guide to the differently-placed races of men, and as it is a good guide for every adult who leads a healthful life; it may safely be inferred that it is a good guide for childhood. It would be strange indeed were it here alone untrustworthy.
SUGAR AND FRUIT IN CHILDREN'S DIET.
3. Consider the ordinary tastes and the ordinary treatment of children. The love of sweets is conspicuous and almost universal among them. Probably ninety-nine people in a hundred, presume that there is nothing more in this than gratification of the palate; and that, in common with other sensual desires, it should be discouraged. The physiologist, however, whose discoveries lead him to an ever-increasing reverence for the arrangements of things, will suspect that there is something more in this love of sweets than the current hypothesis supposes; and a little inquiry confirms the suspicion. Any work on organic chemistry shows that sugar plays an important part in the vital processes. Both saccharine and fatty matters are eventually oxidized in the body; and there is an accompanying evolution of heat. Sugar is the form to which sundry other compounds have to be reduced before they are available as heat-making food; and this formation of sugar is carried on in the body. Not only is starch changed into sugar in the course of digestion, but it has been proved by M. Claude Bernard that the liver is a factory in which other constituents of food are transformed into sugar. Now, when to the fact that children have a marked desire for this valuable heat-food, we join the fact that they have usually a marked dislike to that food which gives out the greatest amount of heat during its oxidation (namely, fat,) we shall see strong reason for thinking that excess of the one compensates for defect of the other—that the organism demands more sugar because it can not deal with much fat. Again, children are usually very fond of vegetable acids. · Fruits of all kinds are their delight; and, in the absence of anything better, they will devour unripe gooseberries and the sourest of crabs. Now, not only are vegetable acids, in common with mineral ones, very good tonics, and beneficial as such when taken in moderation; but they have, when administered in their natural forms, other advantages. “Ripe fruit," says Dr. Andrew Combe, “is more freely given on the Continent than in this country; and, particularly when the bowels act imperfectly, it is often very useful." See, then, the discord between the instinctive wants of children and their habitual treatment. Here are two dominant desires, which there is good reason to believe express certain needs of the juvenile constitution; and not only are they ignored in the nursery regimen, but there is a general tendency to forbid the gratification of them. Bread-and-milk in the morning, tea and breadand-butter at night, or some dietary equally insipid, is rigidly adhered to; and any ministration to the palate is thought not only needless but wrong. What is the necessary consequence? When, on fête-days there is an unlimited access to good things—when a gift of pocket-money brings the contents of the confectioner's window within reach, or when by some accident the free run of a fruit