« EelmineJätka »
requisite strength. The means of overcoming this habit, is to diminish the quantity of nourishment.”
“It is generally said that women need more sleep than men, because they are more feeble : but this opinion cannot be very true, &c."
Plan for reforming the habits of a great city. "An objection will not fail to be made to what I have said respecting the hours that ought to be given to sleep, viz. that the rules proposed, are applicable only to him, who has nothing to do, but to take care of his health ; or who lives in the country; and that they cannot be followed by the inhabitant of a great city, who is enchained by occupations, the time of which is settled by an established order, which it is not possible for individuals to alter. This objection is very strong : the obstacle is a reality. But it can be destroyed by a government which consults the learned every hour, to ascertain what will promote the health of the citizens. Let an ordinance change the hour when the principal axes, shall begin their motion, around which all affairs revolve; and which, by their progress, seem to fix the duration of labours, pleasures &c. Let the opening of the courts and the exchange be put three hours earlier ; let the same be done in all the offices of government; and truly, a reform so salutary to health, which should be begun by so many lawyers, so many who are employed in the administration, and so many merchants, would shortly extend to that small portion of the community, called the fashionables. Finally, the administration of the police, for the interest of the workmen, has ordained, that the representation of shows, where these laborours assist, shall be ended by ten or eleven o'clock; so that being freed from their labours, these useful men may lose less of sleep. Now that which I propose, is not much more difficult to execute. It would even be useless to comprise the spectacles in an ordinance; for they would be forced soon to follow the general order !" Probably the scheme of Dr. Londe will appear visionary to most per
But we must recollect that he belongs to a nation which was once induced to adopt the use of the potatoe, in spite of a strong prejudice, merely from observing one of the flowers of this plant in the coat of their monarch on a court day: and that he proposes the change in Paris—a city, where during the last 50 years, almost every change that was unexpected and incredible, has transpired.
NOTE G. G. PAGE, 270.
Want of Employment. As I was addressing students only, in my lectures, I assumed, from the very nature of the case, that they would never be in want of employment; unless they should cease to be students. But there is not a more prolific source of dyspepsy and misery, than to live without any regular business ; and among the wealthy classes of the community, this is no uncommon case. Indeed, to reach such a condition, seems to be the grand object, after which immense multitudes are toiling, as if it were the summum bonum. And if God permit them to attain their object—that is, to acquire a large amount of wealth, without a taste for literature, or science, or art, so that day after day and month after month, are to be spent without any regular occupation, he could hardly send upon them so far as this world is concerned-a heavier curse. "And when the novelty of such a life is over : when they have gone
through for a few times, with the wearisome rouud of fashionable life; and the dinner party, the tea party, the assembly, &c. begin to pall upon the senses, the man will find that of all human sufferings, ennui, with its accompaniments, nervousness and dyspepsy,-is the most to be dreaded. The constitution of man is most evidently fitted for active efforts; for without these to act as stimulants, all the physical as well as intellectual powers stagnate, and disease and imbecility are the inevitable consequence : so that the proverb is founded in truth, which says. “I hare not leisure to be sick." For vigorous, (not exhausting,) employment is one of the strongest antidotes we possess, for resisting incipient disease. If we do not give the mind something to do abroad, it will turn inward and devour itself; and a morbid state of mind oannot but produce a morbid state of body. Let then, every man of wealth, dread, as one of the greatest of evils, a freedom from regular daily occupation; and if he cannot secure this employment in any other way, let him endeavour to place himself in such circumstances, that a heavy pecuniary loss will be the result of neglecting it.
NOTE H. H. PAGE 270.
Self-Immolation. Ruined by hard study.—The history of very many of our students might be briefly told. A lad is sent to college, and after a few months he returns, pale, emaciated, and puny. Immediately a general lamention is raised among the circle of his friends, that the dear youth is ruining himself with hard study. It is high time that both friends and the public should be disabused on this subject. The truth is, in most cases, hard study has had little or nothing to do with the business. He may have studied well or he may not; but this is not the ground of the difficulty. He has indulged his youthful appetite, without regard to even the common rules of discretion. At the same time, he has indulged in indolent habits, neglecting exercise, or taking it so irregularly as to do him more hurt than good. And very possibly, too, he may have learned the very gentlemanly habits of drinking wine, if nothing worse, and smoking chewing, and snuffing tobacco. And no wonder he looks pale. Meanwhile there is something so pleasant to the ears of a young student in the report that he is ruining himself by hard study, that he feels almost willing to endure his sufferings; and as he looks in the glass, he thinks he can discern in his pale features, plain indications of future greatness. Whereas, if he would learn to read aright, he would only discern indications of present imbecility, and future worthlessness. Only convince the young gentleman, that it will not be fatal to his scholastic dignity to bestir himself a little, and live and act like other people, and at the same time put a little restraint upon his gluttonous propensities, and the blush of health, and strength of limb, will soon return; and with them will return that energy of mind, which will qualify him to study to some purpose.
“ Worn out by Arduous Labors.-We wish to add a few words, on the importance of this subject, when viewed in reference to the Christian ministry. At the present day, when there is such an alarming want of laborers in the vineyard of Christ, what a pity, we often feel constrained
that the energies of those already there, should be so sadly paralyzed by this deadly foe to usefulness. Into whatever part of the country we go, we hear of ministers taken off from their labors by ill health. This is generally attributed to their arduous labors, sometimes we
doubt not, with reason; but in very many instances, we honestly believe, arduous labors have about as much to do with the ill health of the ministers, as hard study has with that of the young student. Their labors are arduous we know; but attention to a few simple rules would have preserved both body and mind in such a healthy, vigorous state, as would have rendered their burden comparatively light. The subject is peculiarly important, with reference to those sons of the church whom, by her charity she is endeavoring to train up for future usefulness in the gospel ministry. Treasure that has been consecrated to God, should not be wasted in training up a race of invalids; and after the light that is now shed upon this subject, we cannot hesitate to say, that the beneficiary, who persists in sacrificing health, to habits of bodily indolence and self-indulgence, ought to be regarded as guilty of a moral offence, and should be forthwith dismissed from the patronage of the church.” —Christian Mirror.
From the Christian Spectator. “We will not conceal the gratification, which we cannoť bat feel, in the exertions which have been lately made, in one quarter and another, to rouse the Christian student to his obligations to watch over the physical nature, with which he is entrusted. Let the warning fall upon his ear like repeated claps of thunder; Beware how you neglect the corporeal frame work, with which all your intellectaal operations are so closely connected. Let this frame work moulder by sloth, or be shaken by excess, or be crushed by overstrained exertion, and you are lost to the cause, to which you might otherwise have been long and usefully devoted. If you do not go down to an early grave, you will be a dead man while you seem to live. Oh, how many departed ones have been lamented, as martyrs to excessive application, who have died “as the fool dieth," the miserable victims of indolence and luxury! The missionary enterprise demands men of a widely different stamp,-men, who have consecrated their bodies as well as their souls, a living sacrifice to Jesus Christ, -men who will spare no pains to preserve their lives and health unimpaired, that they may toil long and vigorously, and joy. fully, for their Saviour.”—Christian Spectator, Dec. 1830, p. 634.
NOTE I. I. PAGE 306.
ique, Paris, 1824.
“But in spite of the discredit, into which such works (works on Hygiene) have fallen among physicians, we think that they have become necessary in the present state of society; and because the most of them are bad, it is indispensable that good ones should be prepared. Indeed, how can you hinder educated men from reading books of medicine? They have contracted that habit since physicians have written in the vulgar tongue. Each amateur of our science has his theory, concerning the causes of maladies and the effects of remedies; and these prepossessions are one of the principal obstacles which a physician meets, at the sick bed. One, seduced by the trash of my Lord Leroy, pants after nothing but purgatives : another, having a scent of the Brunonian system, is not satisfied with any prescription but tonics and stimulants. A third, sees nothing in every malady, but a suppression of the perspiration, and
never will resort to medicines, till he has tried sweating beyond bounds, by wrapping himself up excessively and taking hot drinks. Since at this day empiricism and ontology have passed beyond the language of our classics, into that of the community, there is a multitude of persons, who entertain you with an account of morbid principles, or matters, under which they believe themselves laboring. They represent their own bodies to be the rendezvous of five or six sorts of diseases, which attack them together or separately: the gout, the rheumatism nervous disorders, glaires, bilious complaints, a humour, &c.; they demand of their physician a specific for each one of these; and if he refuses to prescribe one, their confidence in him is shaken, and soon they give themselves up into the hands of some charletan, who succeeds in ruining their health.”
“Many men of merit, disgusted by the diversity of opinions among authors, have become altogether sceptical; (of which, most distinguished physicians, even lately, have set them a pitiable example,) and refused with obstinacy the assistance of our art.'
“What more shameful, what more dishonorable to science, and yet what more common, than to see men of letters, mathematicians, and distinguished civilians, reposing confidence in mere pretenders to medicine, who are destitute of logic, and ignorant sometimes of the first elments of grammar, under the ridiculous pretext that such quacks may possess excellent receipts; and that they have seen them effect wonderful cures ! The more ignorant and coarse a man is, the more he inspires confidence in certain people. A physician, who has studied long to acquire information, has nothing marvelous about him; but the individual who can hardly speak his native tongue, has the reputation of knowing secrets.which are omnipotent against most disorders : many see in him something wonderful, even supernatural; and their confidence is strengthened by that which ought to destroy it.”
“Although at this day, medicine has become a science which rests on invariable principles, ite practice is not yet accessible to the mass of society: but they can study its theory, because they can comprehend it: and they ought to do this, because they will derive from it great advantages. They will thus be able to judge concerning the physician who comes to their aid; and to distinguish between the physiological practitioner, and the mere ontolgist, or routinist (routinier.)”
NOTE K. K. PAGE 357. System of Self Support adopted at Philip's Academy, Andover. I was agreeably surprised to find, on visiting Andover; that the system of self support, which I was about to advocate before the Mechanical Association, was already in successful operation in the Academy in that place. “The diet” says one of the Trustees, who has had the goodness recently to answer my enquiries, “in the commons, is bread and milk for supper and breakfast, and a plain common dinner of meat. During the season of the year for work on the farm, the students are required to labor eleven hours a week. We have now one vacation in the Spring, of one week, and another in the Summer, of the same length, and a third of six weeks in the Winter; that our young men may keep school. The second term has just closed, and the experiment thus far, appears altogether favorable. The price of board, for the two terms, has been 77 cents a week. There were in the commons last term about 40. As far as I know, they were universally satisfied with their
living—their health was good, and one of the instructors told me, at the close of the term, that they had accomplished more in their studies than usual."
The public will look with great interest upon the progress and final results of this interesting experiment: and I rejoice that it is under the guidance of men, who will conduct it judiciously.
Noble example. The following statement of a pious young man at one of our western colleges—as contained in the annals of the American Education Society-shows what can be accomplished by abstemiousness and self denial.
“I will tell you,” said he to an agent of the Society, "how I live. I purchase a bushel of corn meal for 20 cents. I get a loaf baked each week for six cents. I live upon my corn bread and water, and it costs me but twelve and a half cents a week! With this fare I am well contented if I can prepare myself for usefulness in the vineyard of the Lord; and at the close of the session, I doubt not but I shall be as healthy as any of my companions.”—“While speaking of his health,” says the writer, “I was forcibly reminded in view of his healthful countenance, of Daniel and his associates, who, from motives of Christian self denial, lived upon pulse, instead of the king's meat.”
Boston Recorder, Nov. 17, 1830.
NOTE L. L. PAGE 361. Additional facts illustrative of the longevity of learned men. It would be very easy greatly to enlarge the list that is given in the Address, of distinguished octogenarian students. In Sinclair's Code of Health, for example, we find the names of 158 scholars in Modern Europe, (few of which, I believe, are included in the list that I have given,) the average length of whose lives is as follows:
42 English Literati,
85 6 German »
83 4 Dutch
84 Average, 84
Living Scholars. It is believed that a list of the most distinguished living scholars and philosophers, would conduct us to the same conclusions : viz. that they must either have inherited vigorous bodily constitutions, or have rendered healthy and hardy by regimen, those naturally feeble : and that intellectual pursuits are favorable to health. The following list of distinguished living German Savans,* obligingly furnished me by Dr. Francis Lieber, will render this position probable.
* The following note respecting the health of German scholars, (a subject frequently alluded to in this work,) which was this moment received, from a gentleman who has travelled extensively in Europe, is too valuable to be withheld.
“In the South of Germany, I found half the literati, whom I saw, dyspeptic; some great sufferers. I believe there is error on this subject : though I suspect that the habit of unbending—the freedom from our slavish feeling of responsibility, has some influence.”