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the instruments for prosecuting science and literature, but, what is of much greater consequence, the talent of using them is at the same time acquired, and the young man finds that the gifts of nature are made available to all the higher purposes of his education, as well as the noblest objects of his intellectual existence.
The daily necessity, which this mode of instruction imposes upon the pupil, of forming distinct notions; of attending to the evidence on which his judgments are founded; of arranging his thoughts ; of determining, by means of analysis and induction, the links which constitute a chain of reasoning; and, above all, of expressing his ideas in correct and perspicuous language, can scarcely fail to produce mental habits of acuteness, activity and . discrimination. Now, here, the practical method of teaching philosophy rests its main claim to notice on this characteristic circumstance, that it sets little value on the mere communication of knowledge, whether by books or by lecture, compared with the immense importance of exercising the minds of young persons on the knowledge which is thus conveyed to them. As far as an acquaintance with a few facts in science is considered, the attendance of young men on the lectures of a professor is viewed as carrying with it hardly any advantage whatever. A little well-directed reading would accomplish the same end, just as effectually, and at much less expense.
To render academical studies useful, therefore, the student must not be allowed to act the part of a mere recipient. On the contrary, he must be taught to ruminate on what he hears; to pass it all through the channels of his own mind; to arrange and digest it; to write on it; to reason on it; and, finally, to make it his own by combining with it his own thoughts and reflections. He is to regard the lecture not simply as the history of philosophical research, or even as the authoritative vehicle of scientific conclusions, but principally as the means of supplying him with those materials, on which he is to employ his
faculties in the several processes of analysis and arrangement, of reasoning and of composition.
A Poet's Address to his Youngest Daughter.-HOGG.
Child of my age, and dearest love !
Come, look not sad ; though sorrow now
The Blessed Spirits.-JAMES MONTGOMERY.
Palms of glory, raiment bright,
Crowns that never fade away, Gird and deck the saints in light,
Priests and kings and conquerors they.
Yet the conquerors bring their palms
To the Lamb amidst the throne, And proclaim, in joyful psalms,
Victory through his cross alone.
Kings their crowns for harps resign,
Crying, as they strike the chords, “Take the kingdom-it is thine,
King of kings, and Lord of lords."
Round the altar priests confess,
If their robes are white as snow, 'Twas the Saviour's righteousness,
And his blood, that made them so.
Who were these ? On earth they dwelt,
Sinners once of Adam's race; Guilt, and fear, and suffering felt,
But were saved from all by grace.
They were mortal, too, like us ;
Ah! when we like them shall die, May our souls, translated thus,
Triumph, reign and shine on high.
The return of May again brings over us a living sense of the loveliness and the delightfulness of flowers. Of all the minor creations of God, they seem to be most completely the effusions of his love of beauty, grace and joy. Of all the natural objects which surround us, they are the least connected with our absolute necessities. Vegetation might proceed; the earth might be clothed with a sober green ; all the processes of fructification night be perfected without being attended by the glory with which the flower is crowned.
But beauty and fragrance are poured abroad over the earth in blossoms of endless varieties, radiant evidences of the boundless benevolence of the Deity. They are made solely to gladden the heart of man, for a light to his eyes, for a living inspiration of grace to his spirit, for a perpetual admiration. And, accordingly, they seize on our affections the first moment that we behold them. With what eagerness
grasp at flowers! As they become older, they would live for ever amongst them. They bound about in the flowery meadows like young fawns; they gather all they come near; they collect heaps ; they sit among them, and sort them, and sing over them, and caress them, till they perish in their grasp.
“ This sweet May morning,
The children are pulling,
We see them coming wearily into the towns and villages, with posies half as large as themselves. We trace them in shady lanes, in the grass of far-off fields, by the treasures they have gathered and left behind, lured on by others still brighter. As they grow up to maturity, they assume in their eyes new characters and beauties. Then they are strown around them, the poetry of the earth. They become invested, by a multitude of associations, with innumerable spells of power over the human heart; they are to us memorials of the joys, sorrows, hopes and triumphs of our forefathers; they are, to all nations, the emblems of youth in its loveliness and purity.
The ancient Greeks, whose souls preëminently sympathized with the spirit of grace and beauty in every thing, were enthusiastic in their love, and lavish in their use, of flowers. Something of the same spirit seems to have prevailed amongst the Hebrews. " Let us fill ourselves,” says Solomon, “ with costly wine and ointments; and let no flower of the spring pass by us.
Let us crown ourselves with rose-buds before they be withered."
But, amongst that solemn and poetical people, they were commonly regarded in another and higher sense; they were the favorite symbols of the beauty and fragility of life. Man is compared to the flower of the field; and it is added, “the grass withereth, the flower fadeth.” But of all the poetry ever drawn from flowers, none is so beautiful, none is so sublime, none is so imbued with that very spirit in which they were made, as that of Christ : “And why take ye thought for raiment ? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow : they toil not, neither do they spin; and yet I say unto you, that even Solomon, in all his glory, was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to-day is, and to-morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith !"
The sentiment built upon this—entire dependence on the goodness of the Creator—is one of the lights of our existence, and could only have been uttered by Christ j but we have here also the expression of the very spirit of beauty in which flowers were created ; a spirit so boundless and overflowing, that it delights to enliven and adorn