صور الصفحة
PDF
النشر الإلكتروني

saint. “Oh, love me not, I pray too much, and God grant I never love my friends too much hereafter; that hath cost me dear, and my heart hath smarted sore with grief for it already.” Such outbursts prove how deeply the iron had entered into her gentle soul. The death of “Her dear Lord and most beloved Husband," though the greatest, was not the last of her bereavements. In 1645, two years after Falkland's death in Newbury fight, she lost her youngest son, Laurence or Lorenzo. A constitution naturally frail, a spirit sorely tried, broke down under the weight of this fresh sorrow. Her own life was evidently nearing its end. In characteristic fashion she set about to prepare for it. “Now in the very last stage of her Christian race, she growes so exact, that all time seems tedious to her which tends not to Heaven; and, thereupon, she now resolves to get loose from the multitude of her earthly employments; and provides to remove from her stately mansion, to a little house neer adjoyning, and in that house and garden, with a book, and a wheel, and a maid or two, to retire herself from worldly businesse, and unnecessary visits, and to spend her whole time: and she took as great delight in projecting this humiliation and privacy, as others do, in being advanced to publick honours, and state employments."

The end came swiftly. In the depth of the winter of 1645-46 Lady Falkland undertook a journey to London " to take order for the discharge of some engagements." Already in an advanced stage of consumption she contracted a severe chill. Hurrying homeward, she was like to have died at Oxford : “her cough and cold very much increasing, she with most earnest prayers, and holy meditations . . . prepares herself for death."

prepares herself for death." A brief rally, however, permitted her to reach her home at Great Tew. “And now, being far spent, and near her end, she could speak little, yet expressed a great deal of thankfulnesse to God who had brought her safe to die in her own house, among her dearest Friends." There, on St. Matthias' Day, 1645-46, she passed away, and there on February 29th she was buried in the Parish Church of St. Michael's. “Thus in her youth,

* Thus in her youth,” says the pious chaplain, "she was soon perfected, and in a short time of five and thirty years, she fulfilled a long time.” Duncon's words recall Clarendon's glowing epitaph on his dead friend. “ Thus fell that incomparable young man in the four and thirtieth year of his age, having so much despatched the business of life that the oldest rarely attain to that immense knowledge, and the youngest enter not into the world with such innocence; whoever leads such a life needs not care upon how short warning it be taken from him." Clarendon may possibly have had Duncon's

VOL, LXXXIV. N.$.

[ocr errors]

F

4

It

words before him, but the remarkable point is not the coincidence of idea, but the fact that it is possible to pay such a tribute to both husband and wife with perfect and unstrained sincerity, and without in either case arousing in the reader a sense of hyperbole.

Both Lord and Lady Falkland lie in unmarked and unremembered graves. But it does not matter. To the memory of the one Clarendon has raised an imperishable monument; of the other we have a touching portrait from Duncon's pen. Recent piety has raised material memorials both at Newbury and at Tew, but they are superfluous. To anyone with a spark of historical imagination Great Tew itself speaks eloquently both of Lord and Lady Falkland. It still lays a peculiar spell even upon the casual sojourner within its gates. still seems

to breathe the spirit of peace, to offer a haven to the weary soul, storm-tossed amid the conflicts and intrigues of Court and camp and Senate. The living inhabitants are few; but it is peopled with the ghosts of the past : the ghosts of gay Caroline poets and of grave divines, of great lawyers and distinguished statesmen ; of Suckling and Ben Jonson ; of Sheldon and Hammond ; of Hales and Chillingworth ; of Tanfield and Selden; of Edward Hyde and Lucius Cary. But the personality which, above all these, still seems to dominate and pervade this lovely and secluded village is that of the gentle lady who for a brief space reigned at the great house, who went in and out among the simple village folk; herself sorely stricken but eager to bear the burdens of the heavy laden; ministering to the sick and succouring the poor; gently nurtured and highly cultivated; mingling on terms of equality with the highest and gravest in the land, yet always ready “the lowliest duties on herself to lay.” The mere thought of Great Tew seems to bring with it a peculiar fragrance; the fragrance of violets and limes; of dog-roses and clover and honeysuckle. But sweeter even than these, and more lasting, is the savour of two brief lives, lived in the turmoil of a troubled time, yet breathing always the spirit of charity and peace. Truly may it be said of the Lord and Lady of Great Tew that they were “ lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided.” In pace requiescant.

J. A. R. MARRIOTT.

[ocr errors]

THE MEANING OF THE INTERNATIONAL

MORAL EDUCATION CONGRESS.

It is important that the meaning of the Moral Education Congress to be held on September 23rd to September 26th in London this year should be understood as clearly as possible, not only by all educationists, but by the public generally.

It is impossible to exaggerate the immense benefit that mankind would derive from all education resting on a moral basis. Those who have given this subject much time and thought rightly believe that unless education be moral, not only does it not fulfil its chief function, not only is it negative in its effect, but positively pernicious. Now this belief, and it is an intense living faith with many educationists, has never permeated the whole curriculum in schools under the control of dogmatic theologians. The morality embodied in their “religion has been a thing apart from the education given to children on subjects that it has been considered necessary to teach them. This contention is not open to dispute. The aim of the pioneers of moral education is to permeate every subject and every single lesson with the moral idea. The intense vitalisation, the added human interest, this will impart to all instruction, will be obvious when the end and methods aimed at by the Congress are made clear.

The interest that the Congress has already excited may be gathered from the fact that practically all the leading educationists of Europe are giving it their support and welcome. The following letter has been received by the vice-chairman of the Congress, Prof. W. Foerster, from Lord Knollys : “I am commanded by the King to thank you for your letter and to say that he hopes every success will attend the meeting of the International Moral Education Congress which it is proposed to holu in England next autumn." Many of the highest educational officials in various countries are also supporting the Congress. The Right Hon. W. Runciman, M.P., President of the Board of Education, has consented to become a patron, as also have the Education Ministers of France, Italy, Belgium, Spain and Roumania. Hungary, Switzerland, and Holland are also supporting the Congress, and the Committee have every reason to hope that the Prussian Minister of Education will also become one of the

patrons. The Chairman of the General Committee is M. Léon Bourgeois, and amongst the Vice-Presidents, representing fourteen countries, the following may be mentioned : Sir Edward H. Busk, Chairman of Convocation of the University of London ; Sir W. J. Collins, Vice-Chancellor of the University of London ; Prof. Dr. M. E. Sadler; Dr. Viktor v. Molnár, Permanent Secretary to the Minister of Education, Hungary ; Prince Jean de Tarchanoff, Russia ; Prof. Dr. F. Adler, and Prof. Earl Barnes, U.S.A.; Prof. Dr. Harold Höffding, Denmark; M. C. van Overbergh, Directeur Général de l'Enseignement supérieur, and M. Ch. Buls, Président de la Ligue de l'Enseignement, Belgium ; M. D'Estournelles de Constant and M. Liard, Vice-Recteur de l'Université de Paris, France; Prof. Dr. F. Paulsen and Prof. Dr. W. Rein, Germany; Senator Pasquale Villari and Dr. Camillo Co dini, Director of Primary Education, Italy. Invitations to attend the Congress have been sent out by the Foreign Office, the Colonial Office, and the India Office, all of which genially and unhesitatingly granted the request of the promoters officially to recognise its existence. Sixteen different countries have appointed secretaries, who are in communication with the central office here, and very many eminent educationists, both in England and abroad, have promised to read papers.

The Congress has a strictly non-party character, and representatives from all the recognised religious denominations and philosophical schools of thought are co-operating in the organisation of the Congress. One eminent educationist recently expressed the opinion to a past minister who has left his mark on the education in this country, that he considered this the most important educational Congress that has ever been convened in England. This remark cannot fail to be fully endorsed by those attending the Congress, where papers will be read in three different languages on such subjects as School and Home; School Organisation (co-education, school hygiene, playtime, curriculum, the size of classes, &c.); Discipline ; Methods of Training and Teaching ; Juvenile Literature; Civics and Patriotism; The Relation of Religious, Intellectual, Æsthetic, and Physical to Moral Education; The Education of the Morally Backward ; Moral Education in Kindergartens, in Primary and Secondary Schools, in Continuation Schools, and in Training Colleges ;. Ethical Subjects in Present-day Curricula (ethics of work, purity, courtesy, temperance, kindness to animals, hygiene, thrift, &c.); and The Ethical Penetration of the Whole Curriculum (history, geography, literature, classics, modern languages, composition, natural history, mathematics, manual and art training, &c.).

I have given a somewhat full list, so that the scope of the

Congress may be realised at once. But the last-mentioned subject is one I should particularly like to draw attention to, because it seems to me to reveal in a peculiarly illuminating manner the lofty and unalterable beauty of the educational ideal aimed at by the conveners of the Congress.

We must admit the fact that village communities as they existed, say, one hundred years ago are no longer possible. The "self-contained" interests of the squire, the parson, and the villagers, undisturbed by occurrences outside their own community, no longer claim the sole attention of even the smallest and most remote place where men, women, and children are congregated. Every inhabitant of every civilised community in the world is living on an international plane. Events of importance occurring in any portion of the civilised globe can be communicated to him within a few hours after their occurrence by the agency of the telegraph wires and the Press. The Feudal system is extinct. The poorest day-labourer is no longer the governed, but the governor, in the sense that he participates in the government of his country. It is not only his right, but it is his duty to know how the rest of the world is faring. In all countries there is an interchange of ideas in science, commerce, and conduct, all affecting the individual life of every community. A broadly-based system of moral education, therefore, or a proper appreciation of the value of the ideas referred to above, is a new necessity, an international need if the progress of the world is to be forwarded. Arising out of this educational advance would come a far higher view of morality than the one hitherto dreamed of either by teacher or taught. And it would become the normal view of every educated person. It would be borne in upon every child that he or she had a definite part to play in the furtherance of the welfare of the community in which his or her sphere of utility happened to be placed. In taking their stand as citizens of their own country, they would become worthy citizens of the world. This is no Utopian scheme. It is intensely practical, capable of being realised by the existing educational machinery throughout the world. It is no fresh discovery, but a re-adjustment of the forces already existing and already consciously, and in some cases unconsciously, at work in the human mind. All it needs is recognition and practical application.

To return to the idea of the permeation of the moral idea into the ordinary everyday school curriculum. In history the means for introducing the ethical lessons applicable to everyday life are more or less obvious. And what an immensely fertile field of apt illustration we have at hand in what is too often made only to yield the fruitless products of barren dates and names! In

« السابقةمتابعة »