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And Seneca informs us of the wonderful effects which the lively exhortations of his produced upon him :
It is scarce to be imagined how great an impression such discourses are capable of making; for the tender minds of youth are readily inclined to the side of virtue. As they are tractable, and not as yet infected by corruption, they easily yield to truth, provided an understanding advocate pleads its cause before them, and speaks in its favor. For my own part, when I heard Attalus inveigh against vice, error, and irregularity, I pitied mankind, and thought nothing great and valuable but a man that was capable of thinking as he did. When he undertook to set off the advantages of poverty, and to prove that whatever is more than necessary can be looked upon only as a useless charge and an inconvenient burden, he made me wish to go poor out of his school. When he ex, claimed against pleasure, commended chastity, frugality, and purity, I found myself disposed to quit the most lawful and allowable pleasures.
There is still another shorter and surer way of conducting the boys to virtue, and this is by example. For the language of actions is far stronger and more persuasive than that of words. Longum iter est per praecepta, breve and efficax per exempla. 'Tis a great happiness for boys to be under masters whose lives are a continual instruction to them, whose actions never contradict their lessons, who do what they advise and shun what they blame, and who are still moro admired when seen than when they are heard.
Something seems still to be wanting to wliat I have said in this chapter concerning the different duties of a master; and yet parents would surely think themselves very happy if they found such for their children; and yet I desire the reader to observe that all I have hitherto said has been drawn solely from Paganism; that Lycurgus, Plato, Tully, Seneca, and Quintilian have lent me their thoughts, and supplied the rules which I have laid down; that what I have borrowed from other authors does not go beyond their sphere, nor rise above the maxims and notions of the Heathen. Something, therefore, is still wanting to the duties of a master, and this remains to be spoke to under the last article.
13. Christian Piety, Religion, and Zeal for the Children's Salvation.
St. Augustine says, that though Tully's treatise, entitled Hortensius, was very agreeable to him, and the reading of it had paved the way to his conversion by inspiring him with an eager desire after wisdom, there was, notwithstanding, still something wanting, because he found not there the name of Christ; and that whatever did not bear that sacred name, however well conceived, however elegantly written, and however true it might be, did not entirely carry away his heart.* I think, likewise, that my reader should not be wholly satisfied, but still find something wanting in what I have written concerning the duty of masters, as they meet not there with the name of Christ, and discover no footsteps of Christianity in the precepts which relate to the education of Christian children,
• Conf. lib. 3, cap. 4.
What, then, is a Christian master who is entrusted with the education of youth ? He is a man into whose hands Christ has committed a number of children, whom He has redeemed with His blood, and for whom He has laid down His life; in whom He dwells, as in His house and temple; whom He considers as His members, as His brethren and co-heirs, of whom He will make so many kings and priests, who shall reign and serve God with Him and by Him to all eternity. And for what end has He committed them to his care? Is it barely to make them poets, orators, and men of learning ? Who dare presume to say or even to think 80 ? He has committed them to their care, in order to preserve in them the precious and inestimable depositum of innocence, which He has im. printed in their souls by baptism, in order to make them true Christians. This is the true end and design of the education of children, and all the rest are but the means. Now how great and noble an addition does the office of a master receive from so honorable a commission ? But what care, what attention and vigilance, and, above all, how great a dependence upon Christ does it require ?
In this last circumstance lies all the merit, and at the same time all the consolation of masters. They have need, in the government of chil. dren, of capacity, prudence, patience, mildness, resolution, and authority. How great a consolation is it to a master to be fully persuaded that Christ gives all these qualifications, and grants them to the humble and persevering petitioner, and that he may say to Him with the prophet, *Thou, O Lord, art my patience and my strength, Thou art my light and my council, Thou subduest the little people under me whom Thou hast committed to my care. Leave me not to myself one moment, but grant me, for the direction of others, and for my own salvation, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of council and strength, the spirit of knowledge and piety, and, above all, the spirit of the fear of the Lord.'
When a master has received this spirit, his work is done. This spirit is a master within, which dictates to him, and teaches him all that is requisite, and upon every occasion points out to him his duty, and teaches him to practise it. One great mark of his having received it, is that he finds in himself a great zeal for the salvation of the children; that he is affected with their dangers, and touched with their faults ; that he oft reflects upon the value of the innocence which they have received in baptism : how difficult it is to recover it when once it is lost; what account must he give to Christ, who has placed him as a sentinel to guard it, if the enemy carries off so precious a treasure while he is asleep. A good master must apply to himself those words which God was continually resounding in the ears of Moses, the conductor of His people: “Carry them in thy bosom, as a nurse beareth the sucking child.' He must experience somewhat of the tenderness and concern of St. Paul for the Galatians, ' for whom he felt the pains of childbirth, till Christ was formed in them.'
I cannot avoid applying here to the masters some of the instructions which are given in a letter to a superior upon her obligations, nor too
earnestly exhort them to read that letter with care, which suits so well with their circumstances.*
1. The first means of preserving the talent which has been committed to your care, and to increase it, is to labor with fresh zeal to procure your own satisfaction. You are God's instrument towards these children ; you must, therefore, be strictly united to Him. You are the channel, and, therefore, you should be filled. It is your part to draw down blessings upon others; you must not, therefore, turn them aside from falling upon your own head,
2. The second means is not to expect fruit if you do not labor in the name of Christ, that is, as He Himself labored in the sanctification of men. He began with giving an example of all the virtues He has required from them.f His humility and gentleness were astonishing. He gave His life and blood for His sheep. See here the example of shepherds, and discern your own. Never take your eyes from this divine model. Bring forth thus, thus train up your disciples, who are now become your children. Think less of chiding them than of procuring their love; and think only of gaining their love, in order to plant the love of Christ in their hearts, and after that, if possible, to blot you out of their minds.
3. The third means is to expect nothing from your own care, your own prudence, your own light and labor, but only from the grace of God. He rarely blesses those who are not humble. We speak in vain to the ears if He speaks not to the heart. We water and plant in vain, unless He gives the increase.
We think to do wonders by multiplying words. We think to soften the hardness of the heart by sharp reproaches, by humiliations and corrections. This may be useful sometimes, but it must be the grace of God that makes it so; and when we rely too much upon these outward means, we lay a secret obstacle in the way of grace, which is justly refused to human presumption and an haughty confidence.
4. If your discourse and cares have the blessing of God, do not attribute the success of them to yourself. Do not give ear to the secret voice of your heart, which applauds you for it. Hearken not to the commendations of men who mislead you. If your labor seems ineffectual, be not discouraged, nor despair either of yourself or others; but still go on in your duty. The moments which God has reserved to Himself are known only to Him. He will give you in the morning the reward of your labor in the night. It has seemed unprofitable, but not through your fault; the care was recommended to you, and not the success.
Lettres de Moule et de Picté, Chex Jacq. Estienne. tom. 1. +'He began to do and teach.'-Acts, i. 1. 'Mighty in word and in deed.'-Luke, xxiv. 19.
FRENCH SECONDARY SPECIAL SCHOOLS.
INTRODUCTION. SECONDARY Schools, the oldest form of public instruction in France, and the main reliance of families for the liberal education of their sons before they pass into the Faculties of Superior Instruction, or the Special Schools of preparation for the civil and military service, or even into a commercial or manufacturing career, have been the field of much discussion and experimentation between the advocates of the old and the new studies. In 1833, M. Guizot aimed to relieve the pressure on these schools by instituting the Superior grade of Primary Schools, corresponding to our English High Schools.
In 1847, the Minister of Public Instruction (M. de Salvandy), divided the courses of the lycées, and other secondary schools, into three branches; to the classical and scientific studies he added a third branch, under a name till then quite new in the language of the University of France, namely, special instruction, reserved for pupils who were des. tined for commerce or manufactures. The studies embraced three years, and were divided as follows:
First year. Mathematics; natural philosophy and chemistry ; physical geograpby; linear and ornamental drawing; Latin; history and geography; modern languages.
Second year. Mathematics; natural philosophy and chemistry; geometrical mechanics; natural history; Latin; French literature; history and geography; drawing; modern languages.
Third year. Mathematics; descriptive geography; natural philosophy and chemistry; machines; natural history; drawing; French rhetor prising exercises in translation, analysis and composition in French; modern languages; practical lessons in accounts, commercial law, and agriculture.
In a circular addressed to the rectors, the minister remarked : " He wished the instruction solid, in order to render it efficacious. The object is not to offer a sort of asylum to children who have neither aptitude nor willingness for classical studies, but to develop faculties which the pure simple study of the ancient languages would leave inactive, and which need other aliment. The university does not intend to make a distinct, or an inferior college, within a normal one, but to organize for different characters and careers, two systems of lessons, which will lend each other mutual support. Both have an aim equally serious, equally elevated.” On this plan special instruction was organized in several colleges, and in general with happy results. In 1852, the minister (M. Fortoul), devised a new plan of studies, of which the following are the principal features : According to their age and the degree of their knowledge, the pupils of the lyceums were to be divided into three divisions, the elementary, grammar, and superior.
The exercises of the elementary division comprised : reading and recitation, writing, orthography, French grammar, the first principles of Latin grammar, geography, sacred history, explanation of the epitome historic sacræ, the rudiments of arithmetic, and linear, pencil, and pen drawing.
After an examination on the elementary course, the pupils passed into the grammar division, which embraced the three years of the sixth, fifth, and fourth classes. Each of these years was devoted, under the direction of the same professor: (1,) to the grammatical study of the French, Latin, and Greek languages; (2,) to the study of the geography and history of France, and arithmetic. Before leaving the fourth class, the pupils underwent a special examination (examen de grammaire), the result of which, if successful, was stated in a special certificate, which was indispensable to admittance into the superior division.
The superior division consisted of two sections, one literary, the other scientific. The instruction of the former.gave access to the faculties of letters and law. That of the second prepared for the commercial and industrial professions, for the special schools of government, and the faculties of the sciences and medicine. Each pupil entered one or the other section, according to his preparation, and the career to which he was destined, and this was called the system of Bifurcation, which was discontinued by minister (M. Duruy), September, 1863.
By the law of June 21, 1865, Secondary Special Instruction was instituted to comprise moral and religious studies, the French language and literature, history and geography, applied mathematics, physics, mechanics, chemistry, natural history and their applications to agriculture and manufactures, linear drawing, commercial forms, and book-keeping. It may include, also, one or more modern foreign languages, common principles of legislation, industrial and rural economy and hygiene, ornamental and geometrical drawing, vocal music, and gymnastics.
The programmes of this new instruction were prepared with the greatest minuteness, by the minister (M. Duruy), after consultation with the most experienced and thoughtful educators. They were accompanied by precise indications of the method suited to each study. The entire course lasts four years. The subjects are so grouped and divided, that at the end of each year the pupil finds himself possessed of valuable knowledge, answering, in some degree, to the many careers of practical life, and enabling him to enter, with special preparation, the one which he has chosen. These programmes are not inflexible and absolute, but can be developed and restricted, according to the needs of the localities. In the agricultural departments, greater prominence can and should be given to the portions which bear upon that pursuit, and in the manufac. turing districts the scientific principles, suited to the industry of those cities, should receive most attention.