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Hints to Mothers and Nurses. 105 able to answer them, and my belief became almost as bad as theirs. I felt, all the time, that I was wrong, and I could see the folly of some of their objections. They asked me, one day, how it could be supposed that God would destroy Adam and his descendants only for eating an apple? In my worst state I could see that there was nothing in this objection; it was not that our first parents had only eaten of a piece of fruit; it was, that they had disobeyed God;" " it was, Sir," said the poor man, “that they broke the order."
HINTS TO MOTHERS AND NURSES ON
THE DISEASES OF CHILDREN.
MR. NORTH, in his “Practical Observations on the Convulsions of Infants," says,
Many nurses and mothers are in the habit of suddenly rousing children from their sleep, and carrying them from a room comparatively dark, into a glare of light. Such a custom is decidedly improper. A child should be gradually and gently awakened. Much momentary excitement is produced, even in grown persons, by being roused suddenly from sleep; and there can be no doubt that children become, in consequence of such imprudence, more liable to convulsive affections."
The importance of temperance in a nurse, is strongly insisted on.
“A predisposition to convulsive affections in children may be originally produced in consequence of their being suckled by a nurse addicted to the frequent use of spirituous liquors. In several instances, I have known children rapidly recover their health when the nurse was changed, who had before shewn a tendency to convulsions whilst they were suckled
by a woman who indulged in the vice of gin-drinking."
Violent emotions of mind, or excessive bodily fatigue, should be avoided by nurses. M.GILIBERT relates the case of a child who died of convulsions, after having sucked a nurse, who had been exposed to hard labour under a burning sun.
BOERHAAVE knew some instances in which epileptic fits were produced in children in consequence of their nurses having had violent fits of passion. Baumes remarks, that he was informed, by one of his professional brethren, that his child died suddenly of convulsions, after having been suckled by a woman who had been violently exasperated.” i
SUNDAY SCHOOLS. There are few subjects more interesting or important, than those which relate to the best method of training up the rising generation in the knowledge of the Christian Religion; of shewing them on what their eternal hopes depend; and of leading them to the practice of those duties, which are to make them useful members of society on earth, and to prepare them for a state of happiness in heaven. Much has indeed been done, and is still doing, in this country, for this most benevolent end. In Scotland, great attention has, for a long time, been paid to the education of the poor; and the consequence is, that the Scotch peasants are, in general, found to be a wellinformed, frugal, hard-working set of people: you meet but few Scotch beggars; and, moreover, the devout attention which is seen in a Scotch church, is a pattern well worthy of imitation, and gives us reason to believe, that a spirit of earnest piety influences the minds of the worshippers. In Ireland, a good deal seems to be now doing; and there is nothing Sunday Schools.
107 peculiar in the character of the Irish, from which we may not hope the best things, if their minds are turned to the best subjects.
In England, there are daily schools for the poor in almost every town and village. Where the popu. lation is too small to admit of a daily school, there is generally a Sunday School: and, if this is properly conducted, a great difference is soon seen between the children who receive instruction even once a week, and those who do not receive it at all. Indeed a Sunday School is often necessary, even though there be a daily one; for there are many children who are at work all the week, and have no other time for instruction bụt Sunday: and the Sunday School, moreover, serves to keep up the knowledge of what the children learned at the daily school, before they were old enough to go to work.
It may be interesting to read the account of the first establishment of Sunday Schools, given by Mr. Raikes, of Gloucester, whose energy and benevolence in this work has caused his name to be well known to every friend of the education of the poor. Mr. Raikes first began his schools at Gloucester, about the year 1782; and, in three years afterwards, he writes the following letter:
"The beginning of this scheme was entirely owing to accident. Some business leading me one morning to the outskirts of the city, where the lowest of the people (who are here generally employed in the pin manufactory) principally reside, I was struck with concern at seeing a group of children, wretchedly ragged, at play in the street. I asked an inhabitant, whether those children belonged to that part of the town, and lamented their misery and distress. Oh! Sir,' said the woman to whom I was speaking, could you take a view of the town on a Sunday, you would be shocked indeed; for then the street is filled with multitudes of these wretches, who, having .nothing to do on that day, spend their time in noise
and riot, playing at chuck, and cursing and swearing in a manner so horrid, as to convey an idea of hell, rather than any other place. We have a worthy clergyman,' said she, in our parish, who has put some of them to school; but, upon the Sabbath, they are left to follow their own ways, as their parents, having no notion of what is good themselves, cannot teach any thing that is good to their children.'
“ This conversation suggested to me, that it would be useful to endeavour to form some little plan to check this deplorable profanation of the Sabbath. I then enquired of the woman, if there were any decent, well-disposed women in the neighbourhood, who kept schools for teaching to read. I presently was directed to four. To these I applied, and made an agreement with them to receive as many children as I should send upon the Sunday, whom they were to instruct in reading, and in the Church Catechism. For this, I engaged to pay them each a shilling for their day's employment. The women seemed pleased with the proposal. I then waited on the clergyman before mentioned, and imparted to him my plan. He was so much satisfied with the idea, that he engaged to lend his assistance, by going round to the Schools once on a Sunday afternoon, to examine the progress that was made, and to enforce order and decorum among such a set of little heathens.
“ This, Sir," said Mr. Raikes to a gentleman who had enquired about the Schools, “was the commencement of the plan. It is about three years since we began, and I could wish you were here, to make enquiry into the effect. A woman who lives in a lane where I had fixed a school, told me, some time ago, that the place was quite a heaven, upon Sundays, compared to what it used to be. The numbers who have learned to read, and say their Catechism, are so great that I am astonished at it. Sunday Schools.
109 On the Sunday afternoon, the mistresses take their scholars to church, a place into which they before had never entered. But, what is yet more extraordinary, these little creatures have, in great numbers, taken it into their heads to frequent the early morning prayers, which are held every morning at the Cathedral at seven o'clock. I believe there were nearly fifty this morning."
The effect thus produced by this early attempt at Sunday Schools, awakened a lively interest in Gloucester, and other parts of the kingdom.
Five and twenty years afterwards, Mr. Raikes said to a gentleman, that when he at first considered whether such a plan could be made to succeed, the word TRY seemed to come irresistibly into his mind; and he added, “I can never pass by that spot, where it came so powerfully in my mind, without lifting up my hands and heart in gratitude to Heaven. for having put such a thought into my heart."
The success of Sunday Schools has not been less since the death of Mr. Raikes, but much greater ; and it is hoped that the number of these schools will still continue to increase; so that, by their means, as well as that of National, and other daily schools, a time may not be very far distant, when the wish of our late good King will be fulfilled, that every one of his subjects, whether in England, Wales, Scotland, or Ireland, will be able to read his Bible.
It is true, that every man who can read his Bible will not necessarily become a good Christian; but yet, a knowledge of the Scripture must be at the foundation of Christian faith, and consequently of Christian practice.
Education, too, is a great means of improving a man's condition and respectability in the world, and enabling him to be of use to his fellow creatures. It is generally acknowledged, that both agriculture and manufactures flourish most in those parts of Britain where education and intelligence most pre