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JUST PUBLISHED, AND PRESENTED To The LADY's Book By J. G. osbourn.
Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1843, by J. G. Osbourn, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court
for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
: His meal being over, his table's left sitting so,
Troth l if the bread he could ate without swallowing, But hunger returns, then he's fuming and fretting so, }
Now, like a hog in a mortar bed wallowing,
Och! let him alone for a baste of a man!
Niver a bit is the bed made at all;
Bad luck to the picture of Bachelor's Hall.
How he would favour his palate you know.
Ashes and prata skins, kiver the floor:
Things that had niver been neighbours before.
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“There is a reaper, whose name is Death, And with his sickle keen,
He reaps the bearded grain at a breath, And the flowers that grow between.
“And the mother gave, in tears and pain,
But she will find them all again,
How many, many of the fair blooming flowers of household love will the stern Reaper gather during this, his harvest month ! How many opening buds of sweet promise to the mother's heart, are now fading, day by day, while her cares to revive them are powerless, and her tears fall as vainly as the dews on the mown grass' Is it, indeed, the order of divine Providence, that so large a proportion of the human race shall fall in the opening scene of life Is it the law of nature that one fourth (in cities nearly one half) of the children born, shall die before reaching the age of five years? Or is it the ignorance, incompetence or ill management of those to whom is committed the care of infancy, that this early harvest of Death is so abundantly furnished 4 That the latter must be true, in a good degree, is conclusively shown by the fact, that the mean duration of life has increased with the advance of Christian civilization, and is greater just in proportion as the moral and physical nature is developed and strengthened. In ancient Rome, the mean duration of life, among the better classes, with all their comforts at command, was but thirty years—and now the mean duration of life for the whole people of Great Britain, poor and neglected as many of them are, is about forty-four years. We see then that moral and physical improvement have already lengthened the thread of hope for human life, nearly one third ; and yet no one will assert that all which is needed, which is possible has been done, while the mortality among children in our cities is, during the summer months, so great. “What shall we do 1" inquire the poor, weary, anxious mothers, “how shall we save our pale, perishing flowers from the sickle of the destroyer We are here in the hot, dusty city: we cannot leave it. The best food we can procure for our little children is often unsuitable. We have no conveniences for bathing. The very air even comes into our close rooms loaded with foul vapours; and we have no garden, no green spot, where our little ones can set down their tender feet and breathe the fresh cool breeze of the morning and evening hour. What shall we do 1" Truly, here are causes of sickness and sorrow and slow wearing cares, for all who are now in “populous cities pent,” of which woman's heart only can feel the full bitterness. And is it not the province of woman to plead the cause of “little children o’ Will it be deemed officious interference with man's prerogative if we venture to suggest, to the guardians of this pleasant city of Philadelphia, how much they might do to promote the happiness and health of those families who are obliged to remain during this oppressive season in the city, if
they would allow to little children and their attendants, the freedom of the public squares? We do not mean, the freedom merely, of the hot, dry, gravel walks – but the unrestricted enjoyment of the green grass, the luxury of walking and playing under the shade of the noble trees. There the tired nurse might set down her little fretful charge on the cool soft grass, where it would find that change and comfort, which she, in her warm arms cannot give it. The poor, weary mother too might rest and be refreshed herself, while her children were playing around her, and really finding that freedom of earth and air which the young require as the indispensable condition of health with growth.
You might as reasonably expect to raise a healthy, bright-coloured flower in a dark, close room, as hope that your children will be strong, active, cheerful and good-tempered, while they are kept confined within brick walls, or only allowed to walk on the brick pavements and the gravel walks, and this, too, when the August sun has heated both to an almost burning temperature. And then to see around them the soft green grass, under the cool shade of pleasant trees, and not be permitted to set the foot upon this oasis — can it be that wise men have made such a regulation? That is a question we often ask ourself, when we see sickly, sad, discontented looking children and their weary attendants sitting on the hard seats of the gravel walks, in the public squares, as though they were doing penance for the privilege of seeing the green grass, which they are as peremptorily forbidden to “trespass upon,” as though it were a bed of tulips, each flower valued as the fortune of a Dutch burgomaster. And though it were even so, could the worth compare with the health and life of those little human blossoms which are pining and dying for want of such healing and strengthening as those fresh, cool places might supply " Oh, do not allow the small calculations of possible injury to the grass to prevent at least, the experiment for this one month. Some fading bud of infancy nay be revived, whose matured blossom will shed light and beauty over our land. The childhood of genius is, not unfrequently, of the most delicate and frail physical constitution. Many of the greatest, mightiest and best men have been, while young, feeble and sickly, requiring the most gentle and untiring care to keep them here to bless this earth, as though the angels were striving to obtain these precious gifts of God to adorn their own bright gardens in heaven. Surely in the public grounds of a city, bearing the name of one of the noblest and kindest men that the world ever saw, little children should find especial favour.
The month has been sufficiently barren of new publications of value. The serial works to which we have so frequently referred, continue to be issued with accustomed punctuality. The Harpers have issued a cheap edition of “Martin Chuzzleucit,” with embellishments, and they have advanced to the eleventh number of “Alison's History of Europe,” and have nearly completed “Brande's Cyclopædia.” Messrs. Lea & Blanchard have advanced to No. 11 of the “Encyclopædia of Geography.” They are also issuing Cooper's novels in volumes unbound, at 25 cents a piece. We have before us the “Wept of Wish-ton-Wish,” in this cheap form. Messrs. Carey & Hart continue the publication of the “Farmer's Encyclopædia,” and “Tom Burke of Ours.” The Messrs. Appleton of New York and Philadelphia, have published Mrs. Ellis's “Voice from the Vineyard,” a Temperance Prize Book, in a cheap pamphlet form; also “Carlyle on History and Heroes,” the best and most readable of Carlyle's books. Their serial edition of the “Pictorial History of Napoleon,” is just completed. Mr. E. H. Butler has issued the third and fourth numbers of Professor Frost's “American Naral Biography,” richly embellished with portraits of distinguished commanders, views of sea fights, facsimiles of gold medals struck in honour of naval victories, and other pictorial ornaments well suited to the national sentiment and the popular taste. We notice with gratification that the biographer is careful to do justice to the reputation of our distinguished heroes of the lake and the ocean, the dead as well as the living; and we are confident, that in this laudable course, he will receive the support of his countrymen. The fifth number, completing the first volume of Professor Frost's “Pictorial History of the United States,” is now before us. It brings down the history to about the year 1666. The style of narrative as well as the style of pictorial embellishment, so auspiciously commenced, is fully sustained in this number, which in addition to several historical portraits and scenes, contains a splendidly engraved title-page for the volume, and appropriate embellishments for the introductory pages. Hitherto but little poetry has been published in the cheap number form. Messrs. Carey & Hart have given Macaulay’s “Lays of Ancient Rome,” in one of the cheap volumes of his Miscellanies. Now they have commenced issuing “Lord Byron's Works,” in ten numbers. The first contains the whole of Childe Harold with the notes, and a splendid steel plate portrait of the Poet. The second and third embrace the Giaour, the Bride of Abydos, the Corsair, Lara, the Siege of Corinth, Parisina, the Prisoner of Chillon, Beppo and Mazeppa. Mr. Herman Hooker of this city, has published a beautiful little story, translated from the German, by Elizabeth Maria Lloyd. It is entitled “Thirza ; or the attractice pourer of the Cross.” The instruction it conveys is of the moral and religious kind, enforced by a very striking narrative. The same publisher has issued M. Sismondi's “History of the Crusades against the Albigenses in the Thirteenth Century,” one of the most interesting passages in the history of Europe in the middle ages; yet one which has attracted but little attention. It is in the pamphlet form so fashionable at present, and sells for 25 cents. The Harpers have issued a new novel by James, entitled the “False Heir.” The scene is laid in France, and the story is full of interest, fine sentiment and sound
instruction. The Harpers' cheap edition of Shakspeare is now complete.
The Harpers in addition to their other valuable serial works, have commenced the publication of “MTCulloch's Gazetteer,” edited by D. Haskell, A. M., Late President of the University of Vermont. It comes out in parts of 112 pages each, closely printed, at 25 cents a number. It is to be very fully illustrated with maps. Mr. Colon has sent us the “Magnet, devoted to the inrestigation of Human Physiology,” by Le Roy Sunderland; and “The Pierian, or Youth's Fountain of Literature and Knowledge,” edited by Mrs. Anna L. Snelling. The last is a very ably conducted Juvenile Magazine, and appears to have an excellent list of original contributors. We do not exactly understand the propriety of the editor’s copying from the “Young People's Book” a piece entitled “The Use of Learning, by T. S. Arthur,” without acknowledging the source from whence it is derived. If Mr. Arthur is made to appear as an original contributor for the “Pierian,” his pieces should be furnished by himself originally, and paid for. If his pieces, paid for by the publishers of the Young People's Book, are copied into the Pierian, the source should be acknowledged. Magazines intended for the young should not teach dishonesty by example. We have also from Mr. Colon, the “Lowell Offering,” and “Darley's Scenes in Indian Life,” with spirited outline engravings, representing hunts, fights, war dances, &c., in a very effective style. “The Lires of the Queens of England,” by Agnes Strickland, is issued by Messrs. Lea & Blanchard, in neat volumes, in polished paper covers, at 50 cents a volume. The character of this work, an invaluable addition to British history, we have already had occasion to mention. We have received from the publishers a volume of the “Lady's Musical Library,” for 1842, elegantly bound. This valuable publication comprises about one hundred and eighty pieces of the most popular and fashionable music, of the usual varieties, for the piano; among which we observe a large portion which have never been published in any other form. We hear that its success is proportioned to its merits; and considering that with all its excellence, it is also wonderfully cheap, we should be surprised if such were not the case. The Musical Library is still continued as a monthly periodical, and continues to receive, as it richly deserves, the lavish encomiums of the press, and the most liberal patronage of the public. “Wild Scenes of the Forest and Prairie, writh Sketches of American Life.” By C. F. Hoffman, Author of a Winter in the West, &c. New York, William H. Colyer. This is a reprint from a London edition of the works of Mr. Hoffman, who is extensively known abroad as a writer of rare descriptive power, and great energy of style; artists having owned their indebtedness to him for his graphic and picturesque delineations of American scenery. They have the very aroma of the woods, and we almost hear the plashing of water, and the echo of the wild rook, as well as the rattling of the shell under the haunts of the squirrel. He writes like a man full and at home with his subject. There is no reaching after expression — his thoughts leap ready dressed from the full brain. Perhaps the most remarkable trait of Mr. Hoffman as an author, is his extreme individuality, so to say. If his subject be a fancy, he grasps it like a reality. He handles it with a hearty manfulness, that carries a conviction of truth. In this way his fictions even become facts. This is a grand attribute, and Mr. Hoffman should look well to his power in this respect, for it is one rarely to be met with amongst American authors; who are half the time floating away in a misty atmosphere, or dallying upon the confines of thought for lack of power to grasp it.
Many of the sketches of the present volume are Indian Legends, remarkable as establishing an identity of tradition amongst all rude nations, and beautiful in the force and simplicity with which they are related. These will become a part of Indian mythology, and every year will add to their value. Mr. Hoffman is American in his tastes, his pursuits and his subjects, and this fact alone is enough to establish him among the popular authors of our country. We understand the enterprising fosterer of the American muse, John Keese, Esq., proposes publishing a collection of the songs of Mr. Hoffman, already familiar to the lovers of music, but rarely associated with the name of their author. “The Moral Instructor; or Culture of the Heart, Af. fections and Intellect, while learning to Read.” By Thomas H. Palmer, Author of the Prize Essay on Education, entitled “The Teacher's Manual.” Published by the Normal School Society. Boston, Jenks & Palmer. Philadelphia, Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co. This is what may be described as a “Reading Book” for the young. It is arranged in four progressive parts, and we have little hesitation in pronouncing it a work which well deserves the attention of parents and teachers, as better adapted to the purposes of training and instruction than any that has fallen under our notice. The author has two important objects in view — to develope, from the first step in education, both the intellectual and the moral nature of the pupil — to cause children to exercise their reason and to consult their conscience, in a manner proportioned to their capacity, from the very outset. In general, that which is dignified by the name of education, is an appeal to the memory alone. It is a dull parrot-like routine, in which the judgment slumbers and the heart lies torpid. We are satisfied if the child is able to remember, without taking it into consideration that this is but a part of the business, the great purpose of which should be to put forth thinking creatures and moral creatures, capable at once of forming opinions for themselves and of acting for themselves, in a way worthy of their responsibilities. To this end, the labours of Mr. Palmer have been directed, and, to our view, very successfully. By the plan on which the “Moral Instructor” is founded, the attention of the child is fixed by inducing him to reflect on what he reads. The narrative is simple but interesting, and is succeeded by questions referring not only to the incident, but to the merits of the action, carefully adapted, by repeated experiment, to the capabilities of the youthful intellect, that the mind may not be overstrained or taxed beyond its healthful power. In this way, the child is not only entertained and instructed, but its undivided attention is secured, while its faculty of discriminating between right and wrong, is brought into frequent and wholesome exercise. We may say indeed, that a sound morality, cultivating the conscience and the affections, is thus educed, as it were, by the pupil himself —a mode of attaining wisdom which imprints it indelibly on the tablet of the heart, an advantage of no slight importance, when we reflect upon the slight and transient impressions which are made by merely didactic teachings and the repetition of abstruse maxims. It may not however be amiss to add that all this relates to points of morals only — to the universally recognized principles of right and wrong, such as cannot be objected to by any parent, whatever be the religious creed, nothing of a sectarian kind being introduced. It gives us pleasure, therefore, to recommend “The Moral Instructor” to those for whose use it is intended. We are convinced that if it be tried by persons having charge of the education of youth, they will find it productive of the utmost advantage. The author, Mr. Palmer, formerly of this city, but now a resident of Vermont, is a gentleman who has devoted much time to the important subject of primary education. A year or two since, a practical essay on this theme, from his pen, obtained the prize of five hundred dollars, offered for the best work of the kind, by the “American Institute of Instruction,” and during a recent visit to Philadelphia, his lectures before the Controllers and Teachers of the Pub
lic Schools and many other friends of education, attracted much notice, and will, we doubt not, have results of a very beneficial character, many important hints having been given derived from observant experience, of which the intelligent teacher will not fail to avail himsels. In conclusion, it may not be inappropriate to remark, that the crying evil of the times is a lack of conscientiousness. In the march of intellect, morality has been suffered to lag behind, and this is painfully manisest in every grade of society, especially among those whose position and resources would seem to place them above the temptations to crime. Why is this? Is it a necessary consequence that as man becomes enlightened, he should be proportionably vicious! If it were so, it would be a matter of sad discouragement; but we believe that the evil, to a very considerable extent, arises from a fact that is forcibly indicated by Mr. Palmer in a brief preface to the work of which we speak. We are prone to cultivate only a part of our nature, and that part not the most essential to our well-being, either here or hereafter. The faculties are sharpened, but the development of the higher powers, the controlling sentiments, is left almost to chance. Our pride, our revengeful feelings, our arbitrary dispositions, our cruelty and our selfishness, not only remain unchecked, but in some respects are actually stimulated into more luxuriant growth, by the pernicious maxims which many books intended for the use of children, fasten upon the mind. The obvious distinctions of right and wrong — the inward delight arising from the pursuit of virtue, and the unhappiness incurred by deviations from the paths of rectitude, are talked of, it is true, but they are not brought home to contemplation in an efsective manner. On the contrary, false incentives to goodness are proposed, which in the end have the usual consequences of falsehood, engendering doubt, distrust and a want of confidence in all precept which runs counter to inclination. No child who is taught that virtue invariably receives a temporal reward—that it is the shortest way to successes and earthly gratifications, and, at the same time, is left to suppose that these things of themselves form man's chief happiness and the main object of his existence, soon discovers the contradiction and the fallibility of the rule, and is left upon the sea of life without chart or compass. Taking care, therefore, not to undervalue the objects of merely human ambition, it is Mr. Palmer's purpose to inculcate a sounder morality than this, by strengthening the conscientious instincts which exist in every bosom, before they are either weakened or effaced by the errors of education, and by showing that real happiness springs from the unswerving performance of our duty to others and to ourselves, from the heart and from the affections — that it is not altogether, as many unfortunately suppose, in the possession of riches, in prosperity, and in the capacity to vie with and to surpass our neighbours in glittering display, but in being true to virtue, true to the purposes of our creation, that we may enjoy felicity ourselves and impart it to others. Surely this is a work of no slight importance, when we contemplate the havoc which is continually made around us by a want of knowledge of these truths “Classical Studies : Essays on Ancient Literature and Art, writh the Biography and Correspondence of Eminent Philologists.” By B. Sears, B. B. Edwards & C. C. Felton. Boston: Gould, Kendall & Lincoln. Three of the most accomplished scholars of our country have here united to produce a work, for which every other scholar must be grateful to them. Its subject is Classical Literature, or rather the influence of that literature as exhibited in the lives and writings of some of its most distinguished cultivators. Nearly all the articles in the collection are from the German, or relate to Germans, —a circumstance which must be considered as almost a matter of course, in a work treating of a branch of study in relation to which, more than to any other, the literature of Germany, as is well remarked by one of the writers, “fills nearly the whole intellectual horizon.” There is, however, a fine essay, beautifully translated by Professor Felton, from the illustrious Swedish poet, Tegnar, on the “Study of the Greek Literature.” Two other papers, se