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MENTAL DISCIPLINE IN EDUCATION.

“ If we consult reason, experience, and the common testimony of ancient and modern times, none of our intellectual studies tend to cultivate a smaller number of the faculties, in a more partial or feeble manner, than Mathematics. This is acknowledged by every writer on Education of the least pretension to judgment and experience."

SIR WILLIAM HAMILTON.

From the “vast preponderance of encouragement to Classical reading which the condition of English culture offers," it will be seen “ how important it is for those who know that mere Classical reading is a narrow and cnfccbling Education to resist any attempts to add to this preponderance, by diminishing the encouragement which the University gives to studies of a larger or more vigorous kind.”

Dr. WHEWELL.

“ To suppose that deciding whether a Mathematical or a Classical Education is the best, is deciding what is the proper curriculum, much the same thing as to suppose that the whole of dietetics lies in ascertaining whether or not bread is more nutritive than potatoes."

HERBERT SPENCER.

INTRODUCTION.

All educational inquiries assume that man is individually improvable, and therefore collectively progressive. Through varied experiences he is slowly civilized, and there is a growth of knowledge with the course of ages. But while thought is ever advancing, it is the nature of institutions to fix the mental states of particular times; and there hence arises a tendency to conflict between growing ideas and the external arrangements which are designed to express and embody them. Thought refuses to be stationary ; institutions refuse to change, and war is the consequence.

This fact is familiarly illustrated in the case of government. Ideas and character, having outgrown the arbitrary institutions of the remoter past, there has arisen between them an antagonism, of the results of which modern history is full. So, too, religious conceptions having developed beyond the ecclesiastical organizations to which they at first gave rise, a struggle arose in the sixteenth century, which, resulting in the Protestant Reformation, has persisted under various aspects to the present time. And so it is also with the traditional systems of mental culture. Educational institutions which have been be

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