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the most modest Forms of Speech that our Mother-Tongue can furnishi us with. In this Respect, (as the Poet says) Children should be treated with great Reverence.
Maxima debetur pueris reverentia. . It is confessed that Books of Anatomy and other Parts of necessary Science are proper to be written, and these may be consulted by Persons who are grown up to a due Age, especially by those whose Profession requires it. There is also some Necessity of foul Narratives where foul Crimes are committed and ought to be publickly exposed and brought to Justice and Punishment. As the Affairs of Mankind stand, these Things cannot always be avoided ; But there is no Manner of Neceffity that Children should read them, or rash unguarded Youth.
For some of the Reasons before mentioned there should be a wise Conduct in thewing Children what Parts of the Bible they should read : For though the Word of God expresseth all Things with due Decency, yet there are some Things which have been found necessary to be spoken of in Scripture, both in the Laws of Mofes, and in the Representation of the Wickedness of the Gentiles in the New Testament, in which adult Persons have been concerned, which there is no Neceffity for Children to read and hear,
and they may be passed over or omitted among them. The Jews were wont to withhold Solomon's Song from their Children till they were thirty Years old : And the late pious and prudent Bishop Tillotson (in a Manuscript which I have feen) withes that those Parts of the Bible wherein there are some of the Affairs of Mankind expressed 100 naturally (as he calls it) were omitted in the publick Lessons of the Church: I think they may as well be excepted allo out of the common Lessons of Children, and out of the daily Course of reading in Family Worship.
LET Parents take as much Care as they can in the Choice of Gompanions and Playfel. lows for their Sons and their Daughters. It would be a happy Thing if Children, who are bred up in Schools, could be secured from the Company and evil Influence of other Children who curse and swear, who take the Name of God in vain, and use filthy and unclean Language. Masters and Mis. treffes should be very watchful and striet in their Inquiries into the Behaviour of their Scholars of both Sexes when they are out of their Sight, that if it were possible chere might not be one among them whose Lips are impure or prophane: For one diseased Sheep may infect the whole Flock. However, where Children- find such Immorality practised by any of their fellows; they Thould be taught to thew their utmost Abhor
rence of it, and speedily forsake such pernicious Company
A Guard set on the Sports and Diverfions of
A S Parents should take Care to have A their Children employed in proper Learning and Business, so they should not think it beneath them to concern themselves a little about their Sports and Recreations. Human Nature, especially in younger Years, cannot be constantly kept intent on Work, Learning or Labour. There must be some Intervals of Pleasure to give a Loose to the Mind, and to refresh the natural Spirits. Too long and intense a Confinement to one Thing, is ready to over-tire the Spirits of Youth, and to weaken the Springs of Activity by excessive Fatigue. It is an old Simile on this Occasion, and a very just one, that a Bow kept always bent will grow feeble and lose its Force. The alternate Suceefsions of Business and Diverlion preserve the Body and Soul of Children in the happiest Temper: And Learning is more closely pursued, and Work better done after some agree. able Relaxations. The young Creatures ap.
ply ply themselves to their Bufiness with new Vigour after the Enjoyment of some pleasurable Release.
I CONFESS it would be a considerable Advantage if the various parts of Learning and Business in which Children are employed, were so happily contrived, that one might be as it were a Relaxation or Diversion, when the Mind is tired with the other : And if Children have a Taste and Relish of Reading and Improvement of the Mind, there is a rich Variety of Entertainment to be found in Books of Poetry, History, Accounts of the Wonders of Art and Nature, as well as ingenious Practises in mechanical and mathematical Affairs. It is happiest indeed where this Relish is the Gift of Na. ture; yet Children may be trained up by wise and alluring Methods, to delight in Knowledge and to choose such Sort of Recreations, especially in Winter Nights and rainy Seasons when they cannot enjoy the more active Diversions abroad. Yet besides these some other Sorts of Sports will generally be found necessary for Children of almost all Dispositions.
AND their Sports ought to be such as are in fome Measure chosen by themselves, that they may be Matter of Delight, yet still under the Regulation of the Eye and Prudence of a Parent. No lort of Play should be permitted wherein façred Things become a
Matter of Jest or Merriment. No Sport Thould be indulged wherein foul Language, ill Names or Scandal are practised; wherein there is any Violation of Modesty or of the Rules of Decency and Cleanliness; nothing must be suffered wherein there is any Breach of the moral Precepts of the Law of God; wherein Cozening or Cheating, Falshood or Lying are practised or allowed. They should be confined to Honesty, Justice, Truth and Goodness even in their very Play.
They should not be permitted to use such Sporting as may tend to discompose their Spirits, disorder their Nature, injure their Fler, prejudice their Health, break their Limbs, or do Mischief to themselves, or each other. This Should rather be the Play of Dogs or Horses than of Children.
Nor should they ever be allowed to practise those Diversions that carry an Idea of Barbarity and Cruelty in them, though it be but to brute Creatures. They should not set up Cocks to be banged with Cudgels thrown at them about Shrovetide; nor delight in giving a tedious lingering Death to a young Litter of Dogs or Cats, that may be appointed to be destroyed and drowned, left they multiply too much in a House: Nor should they take Pleasure in pricking, cutting or mangling young Birds which they have caught, nor using any favage and bloody