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Secondly, others who are able, use it only as a passage to better preferment, to patch the rents in their present fortune, till they can provide a new one, and betake themselves to some more gainful calling. Thirdly, they are disheartened from doing their best with the miserable reward which in some places they receive, being masters to their children and slaves to their parents. Fourthly, being grown rich they grow negligent, and scorn to touch the school but by the proxy of the usher. But see how well our schoolmaster behaves himself.
His genius inclines bim with delight to his profession. God, of his goodness, hath fitted several men for several callings, that the necessity of Church and State, in all conditions, may be provided for. And thus God mouldeth some for a schoolmaster's life, undertaking it with desire and delight, and discharging it with dexterity and happy success.
He studieth his scholars' natures as carefully as they their books; and ranks their dispositions into several forms. And though it may seem difficult for him in a great school to descend to all particulars, yet experienced schoolmasters may quickly make a grammar of boys' natures.
He is able, diligent, and methodical in his teaching ; not leading them rather in a circle than forwards. He minces his precepts for children to swallow, hanging clogs on the nimbleness of his own soul, that his scholars may go along with him.
He is moderate in inflicting deserved correction. Many a schoolmaster better answereth the name paidotribe than paidagogos, rather tearing his scholars’ flesh with whipping than giving them good education. No wonder if his scholars hate the muses, being presented unto them in the shapes of fiends and furies.
Such an Orbilius mars more scholars than he makes. Their tyranny hath caused many tongues to stammer which spake plain by nature, and whose stuttering at first was nothing else but fears quavering on their speech at their master's presence, and whose mauling them about their heads hath dulled those who in quickness exceeded their master.
To conclude, let this, amongst other motives, make schoolmasters careful in their place—that the eminences of their scholars have commended the memories of their schoolmasters to posterity.
TAE TRUE GENTLEMAN.
He is extracted from ancient and worshipful parentage. When a pepin is planted on a pepin-stock, the fruit growing thence is called a renate, a most delicious apple, as both by sire and dam well descended. Thus his blood must needs be well purified, who is genteelly born on both sides.
If his birth be not, at least his qualities are generous. What if he cannot with the Hevenninghams of Suffolk, count five and twenty knights of his family, or tell sixteen knights successively with the Tilneys of Norfolk, or with the Nauntons, show where their ancestors had seven hundred pounds a-year before or at the conquest; yet be hath endeavoured, by his own deserts, to ennoble himself. Thus valour makes him son to Cæsar, learning entitles bim kinsman to Tully, and piety reports him nephew to godly Constantine. It graceth a gentleman of low descent and high desert, when he will own the meanness of his parentage. How ridiculous is it when many men brag that their families are more ancient than the moon, which all know are later than the star which some seventy years since shined in Cassiopæia. But if he be generously born, see how his parents breed him.
He is not, in his youth, possessed with the great hopes of his possession. No flatterer reads constantly in his ears a survey of the lands he is to inherit. This hath made many boys' thoughts swell so great they could never be kept in compass afterwards.
Only his parents acquaint him that he is the next undoubted heir to correction, if mis-behaving himself; and he finds no more favour from his school-master, than his school-master finds diligence in him, whose rod respects persons no more than bullets are partial in a battle.
At the University he is so studious, as if he intended learning for his profession. He knows well that cunning is no burden to carry, as paying neither portage by land, nor poundage by sea. Yea, though to have land be a good first, yet to have learning is the surest second, which may stand to it when the other may chance to be
At the Inns of Court he applies himself to learn the laws of the kingdom. Object not, Why should a gentleman learn law, who if he needeth it may have it for his money, and if he hath never so much of his own, he must but give it away. For what a shame is it for a man of quality to be ignorant of Solon in our Athens, of Lycurgus in our Sparta ? Besides, law will help him to keep his own, and bestead his neighbours. Say not that there be enough which make this their set practice : for so there are also many masters of defence by their profession; and shall private men, therefore, learn no skill at their weapons ?
As for the hospitality, the apparel, the travelling, the company, the recreations, the marriage of gentlemen, they are described in several chapters in the following book. A word or two of his behaviour in the country.
He is courteous and affable to his neighbours. As the sword of the best tempered metal is the most flexible; so the truly generous are most pliant and courteous in their behaviour to their inferiors.
He delights to see himself and his servants well mounted: therefore he loveth good horsemanship. Let never any foreign Rabshakeh send that brave to our Jerusalem, offering “ to lend her two thousand horses, if she be able on her part to set riders upon them.” We know how Darius got the Persian empire from the rest of his fellow peers, by the first neighing of his generous steed. It were no harm, if in some needless suits of intricate precedency betwixt equal gentlemen, the priority were adjudged to him who keeps a stable of most serviceable horses.
He furnisheth and prepareth himself in peace against time of war: lest it be too late to learn when his skill is to be used. He approves himself courageous when brought to the trial, as well remembering the custom which is used at the creation of Knights of the Bath, wherein the king's master cook cometh forth, and presenteth his great knife to the new made knights, admonishing them to be faithful and valiant, otherwise he threatens them that that very knife is prepared to cut off their spurs.
If the commission of the peace finds him out, he fuithfully discharges it. I say finds him out; for a public office is a guest which receives the best usage from those who never invited it. And though he declined the place, the country knew to prize his worth, who would be ignorant of his own. He compounds many petty differences betwixt his neighbours, which are eașier ended in his own porch than in Westminster-hall; for many people think, if once they have fetched a warrant from a justice, they have given earnest to follow the suit, though otherwise the matter be so mean that the next night's sleep would have bound both parties to the peace, and made them as good friends as ever before. Yet,
He connives not at the smothering of punishable faults. He hates that practice, as common as dangerous amongst country people, who having received again the goods which were stolen from them, partly out of foolish pity, and partly out of covetousness to save charges in prosecuting the law, let the thief escape unpunished. Thus, whilst private losses are repaired, the wounds to the commonwealth, in the breach of the laws, are left uncured : and thus petty larceners are encouraged into felons, and afterwards are hanged for pounds, because never whipped for pence, who, if they had felt the cord, had never been brought to the halter.
If chosen a member of Parliament, he is willing to do his country service. If he be no rhetorician to raise affections, yea Mercury was a greater speaker than Jupiter himself, he counts it great wisdom to be the good manager of yea and nay. The slow pace of his judgment is recompensed by the swift following of his affections, when his judgment is once soundly informed. And here we leave him in consultation, wishing him with the rest of his honourable society, all happy success.
120. Jeremy Taylor. 1613-1667. (Manual, p. 191.)
THE LAST JUDGMENT. The majesty of the Judge and the terrors of the judgment, shall be spoken aloud by the immediate forerunning accidents, which shall be so great violences to the old constitutions of nature, that shall break her very bones, and disorder her till she be destroyed. Saint Jerome relates, out of the Jews' books, that their doctors used to account fifteen days of prodigy immediately before Christ's coming, and to every day assign a wonder, any one of which, if we should chance to see in the days of our flesh, it would affright us into the like thoughts which the old world had, when they saw the countries round about them covered with water and divine vengeance ; or as those poor people near Adria and the Mediterranean Sea, when their houses and cities are entering into graves, and the bowels of the earth rent with convulsions and horrid tremblings. The sea (they say) shall rise fifteen cubits above the highest mountains, and thence descend into hollowness and a prodigious drought; and when they are reduced again to their usual proportions, then all the beasts and creeping things, the monsters and the usual inhabitants of the sea, shall be gathered together, and make fearful noises to distract mankind ; the birds shall mourn and change their songs into threnes and sad accents; rivers of fire shall rise from the east to west, and the stars shall be rent into threads of light, and scatter like the beards of comets; there shall be fearful earthquakes, and the rocks shall rend in pieces, the trees shall distil blood, and the mountains and fairest structures shall return into their primitive dust; the wild beasts shall leave their dens, and come into the companies of men, so that you shall hardly tell how to call them, herds of men or congregations of beasts; then shall the graves open and give up their dead, and those which are alive in nature and dead in fear, shall be forced from the rocks whither they went to hide them, and caverns of the earth, where they would fain have been concealed ; because their retirements are dismantled, and their rocks are broken into wider ruptures, and admit a strange light into their secret bowels; and the men being forced abroad into the theatre of mighty horrors, shall run up and down distracted and at their wits' end ; and then some shall die, and some shall be changed, and by this time the elect shall be gathered together from
the four quarters of the world, and Christ shall come along with them to judgment. These signs, although the Jewish doctors reckon them by order and method, concerning which they had no other revelation (that appears), nor sufficiently credible tradition, yet for the main parts of the things themselves, the Holy Scripture records Christ's own words, and concerning the most terrible of them;
of which, as Christ related them, and His apostles recorded and explicated, is this ; “ The earth shall tremble, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken, the sun shall be turned into darkness and the moon into blood;" that is, there shall be strange eclipses of the sun, and fearful aspects in the moon, who, when she is troubled, looks red like blood; “ the rocks shall rend, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat. The heavens shall be rolled up like a parchment, the earth shall be burned with fire, the hills shall be like wax, for there shall go a fire before him, and a mighty tempest shall be stirred round about him.”
Dies iræ, dies illa
ON PRAYER. Prayer is an action of likeness to the Holy Ghost, the Spirit of gentleness and dove-like simplicity; an imitation of the holy Jesus, whose spirit is meek, up to the greatness of the biggest example; and a conformity to God, whose anger is always just, and marches slowly, and is without transportation, and often hindered, and never hasty, and is full of mercy. Prayer is the peace of our spirit, the stillness of our thoughts, the evenness of recollection, the seat of meditation, the rest of our cares, and the calm of our tempest ; prayer is the issue of a quiet mind, of untroubled thoughts, it is the daughter of charity, and the sister of meekness; and he that prays to God with an angry, that is, with a troubled and discomposed spirit, is like him that retires into a battle to meditate, and sets up his closet in the out-quarters of an army, and chooses a frontier garrison to be wise in. Anger is a perfect alienation of the mind from prayer, and therefore is contrary to that attention, which presents our prayers in a right line to God. For so have I seen a lark rising from his bed of grass, and soaring upwards, singing as he rises, and hopes to get to heaven, and climb above the clouds ; but the poor bird was beaten back with the loud sighings of an eastern wind, and his motion made irregular and inconstant, descending more at every breath of the tempest than it could recover by the libration and frequent weighing of his wings; till the little creature was forced to sit down and pant, and stay till the storm was over; and then it