fine the taste; but it usually fails to make men learned or wise. The student of encyclopædias, commentaries, hand-books and keys, never knows anything, certainly. Like one clothed in borrowed raiment, he constantly fears exposure. He can never trust his own opinion, and if he chance to present just views upon any subject, there is often some one at hand to exclaim; "alas, master, for it was borrowed!" Young minds seldom digest the abundant provisions which sedulous authors provide, and, of course, no mental strength is derived from them. There is great force in the proverb; "Beware of the man of one book." He who has thoroughly studied and digested one useful book, is better educated than he who has perused a thousand. He may have less versatility of powers, less fluency of speech, and less ready wit; but he will have greater force of thought, more power of origination, and greater ability to reason and decide. Unnecessary assistance rendered to young minds, tends to enfeeble them; to stifle, rather than promote thought; to satiate, rather than stimulate curiosity. The excessive simplification of everything abstruse or complicated only begets a sickly precocity which terminates in premature decay. Modern students are apt to aim at extent, rather than depth of research. They love to cull flowers in cultivated fields, but hate to delve in the dark mine for undiscovered ore. Every text book must be read with collateral helps, not studied and comprehended by dint of mental effort. Acquaintance with many books, in the popular apprehension, is equivalent to much wisdom. Facility of acquisition is substituted for the power of invention. The former is obtained through the labors of others, the latter, by personal application. In the study of the classics, it is better to explain, by notes, too little than too much. It is always expected that pupils of widely dif ferent degrees of mental power will study the same book. One will not fail, perhaps, in one sentence, in ten; another will stumble upon every word. If books are to be made for the humblest capacities, they will prove an incumbrance to the only class of persons who can really be taught to think. Is it not better, therefore, that the teacher, by the living voice, should minister to the wants of feeble minds, rather than to suffer the best students to be permanently injured by their incapacity? Every teacher knows full well, that when a recitation is prepared by the aid of a commentary, the student needs that very commentary to prompt his memory while under examination. Hence, nothing is more common than to see the scholar's eye drop to the foot of his page, to catch a glimpse of the printed note. When these explanations are in an appendix, the eye of the reciter often moves like a shuttle-cock from one part of the book to the other, in order to revive his dim conceptions, and call his straggling thoughts from the appended "notes," and bring his fragmentary knowledge to

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bear upon the interpretation of the text. The pupil who thus learns his task, never feels sure that he is right. He has faint impressions, but no certain convictions. He is never certain that his recitation is prepared. He is never safe without his adjutants. He cannot recite from another edition of the same author. All is strange there. It is to him a new work. When he reads from his own book, he feels sure that he has at hand all that is necessary to elucidate the text, but when "the armor wherein he trusted" is taken away, his courage fails, and he is discomfited. It follows, therefore, that the extent of ground gone over by a pupil, in a given time, is no test of scholarship. To read a free translation of a difficult author, without comparing it all with the original, would give a person very little notion of the style of the author, or of the language in which he wrote. To read a textbook, by the aid of a free translation, or by copious annotations (which in many cases are more injurious), merely comparing the version or notes with the original, so as by the principle of association to recall the meaning of the words at recitation, will neither make the student master of the language, nor of the thoughts of the writer. Such feeble impressions are soon obliterated, and if the student be called upon to recite the same passage again, he is obliged to resort to the same process of preparation. He can never swim without his cork. This is not true of one who has mastered the subject studied; who has sought knowledge from the love of it, and not from a prurient anxiety to display it. He who has clearly understood and appreciated an author's meaning, by hard study, cannot forget what he has learned. No succession of new ideas will displace the old. They have been enstamped upon the soul, and their impression will remain till "times's effacing finger" shall blot the page of memory. Knowledge thus acquired constitutes the resources of the orator and of the teacher. It makes the ready debater, the intelligent counsellor, and the wise judge. No man is well prepared for the business of life whose ideas have only a transient home in the soul, or repose entirely apart in books. No superficial helps will supply the place of protracted study. Like the numerous props which support a falling building, they betoken debility rather than strength. The mind must have capacity before it can contain. It must have strength before it can sustain. Capacity and strength, apart from nature's gifts, depend almost entirely upon the exercise of one's own faculties on severe, long-continued, mental efforts.'

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When you find, therefore," says Bishop Hall, "motions of resistance, awaken your courage the more, and know that there is some good that appears not; vain endeavors find no opposition. All crosses imply a secret commodity; resolve then to will before you begin not to will; and rather oppose yourselfe, as Satan opposes you, or else you doe nothing.”—Quoted by Warren, Law Studies, p. 109.

On the utility of employing one's own powers in overcoming difficulties, hear the philosophic Burke: "Difficulty is a severe instructor, set over us by the supreme ordinance of a parental guardian and legislator, who knows us better than we know ourselves, as he loves us better too. Pater ipse colendi haud facilem esse viam voluit. He that wrestles with us, strengthens our nerves, and sharpens our skill. Our antagonist is our helper. This amicable conflict with difficulty obliges us to an intimate acquaintance with our object, and compels us to consider it in all its relations. It will not suffer us to be superficial."

This is the student's own work. It admits of no substitute. No costly library, no hoarded treasure of literary lore, not even the accurate recollection of what others have written will atone for the neglect of such discipline. The men who lead the public mind by their superior talents, are thinking men, industrious men; in a word, they are "hard students." They succeed by their own mental labors. The greatest benefactors of mankind are also thinking men. They have sufficient grasp of intellect to survey wide fields of labor, and to adapt means to ends, upon an extended theatre of action. Men who do not go below the surface of the momentous questions of the day, are soon understood, and frequently despised. If the young would have strong minds, capable of great achievements, they must submit to severe intellectual labor. The great problems of life are only wrought out by patient mental toil. The only preparation for this work is thorough mental discipline, based upon the constant exercise of one's own native powers. The more difficult the task, provided its accomplishment be within the student's power, the greater the benefit resulting from it.

When a classic is put into the hands of a student, he should have also such helps provided, as with his own application, are necessary to the full understanding of the author.' Lexicons and works of reference should be within his reach, so that he may have no excuse for indolence. It is no doubt a convenience to the student to find all the information requisite to a complete elucidation of the author in the very book from which he is to recite. Indeed, there would be no very great objection to this, if the notes were few, brief, and judiciously prepared. But it may be questioned whether such aids do not encourage careless habits of study. Where little labor is demanded in the preparation of a task, the student is apt to become indolent. It is so much easier to read than to study, to appropriate literary treasures than to seek for them, that few are willing to bear the

1 Ars demonstrat tantum, ubi quaeras, atque ubi sit illud, quod studeas invenire; reliqua sunt in cura, attentione animi, cogitatione, vigilantia, assiduitate, labore; complectar uno verbo, quo saepe jam usi sumus, diligentia; qua una virtute omnes virtutes reliquae continentur."--Cicero de Oratore, Lib. 1, §35.

fatigue of patient research. The only plausible reason urged for incorporating notes and comments with the book studied, is economy of time; but how can the time of the young be so profitably employed as in the search after knowledge? The very effort required for its discovery, the fixing of the attention upon the thought so as to imprint it upon the memory; the exercise of the judgment in selecting the appropriate facts for illustration, all tend to invigorate the mind, and to form habits of minute and accurate investigation. Most editors of school-books are so anxious to make their books agreeable rather than useful, so that the sale may be more ready, and the profit more abundant, that, by their copious explanations, they preclude the possibility of severe study. With some of the text-books in use, a student may appear respectably well in recitation, with little more mental effort than would be required to understand an equal amount of composition in his vernacular tongue. Every anomaly is explained; every difficult passage literally rendered, every geographical, biographical and archæological allusion fully illustrated in the notes. The student needs neither grammar, dictionary, or manual of antiquities to understand his author, nor does he need much intellect. A very small capital is sufficient to trade in such merchandise; nor will he be greatly enriched by the commerce. Such pupils would be almost as much benefited by listening to soft strains of exquisite music, or by gazing at a beautiful landscape or picture, as by thus toying with ancient authors. In each case, the mind is nearly passive in receiving impressions. Thoughts come unbidden, and escape unobserved.

By the power of association, these furnished facts may be recalled in presence of the teacher and the class, because they were conned, or rather perused, for that very purpose; but it would be a strange phenomenon in metaphysics, if they should be retained for any other occasion. The information which, by an asterisk or figure, is referred to a particular phrase or word, seems to be designed only for a specific purpose, to explain a present. difficulty. Should the same idiom again occur, the same explanation will be needed. It seldom occurs to the learner, that a principle may be involved in the solution of his present difficulty, and that other like phrases or constructions are to be solved in the same way. If the same information be derived from the lexicon, or classical dictionary, or any other manual, in the regular course of investigation, there is certainly a greater probability of its being retained for subsequent use. If the text contain allusions to manners and customs, of which the student knows not where to find an explanation; or if it contain names of persons, places, deities, &c., which are not defined in the ordinary lexicons, it is wise to append to the text-book explanatory notes. But if these notes are necessarily numerous, it is better

that they should be found in a separate volume; for while the student has the requisite information in his hands, and before his eyes, he will seldom make any other use of the notes than to read them to his teacher. Why should he trouble himself to commit to memory what is always before him at recitation, and can be referred to at pleasure?

There is the same improvidence in the many, respecting mental stores, as exists in regard to material wealth. If the wants of the present hour are satisfied, no thought is bestowed on the future. We maintain, therefore, that it is no commendation of a book, to say that it is adapted to "the meanest capacity;" for the epithet descriptive of the talents of the learner, usually applies with greater force, to the book itself. The commentary of an editor ought to be suggestive, rather than demonstrative; adapted to stimulate, rather than satiate curiosity. The furnished "aids" should be so prepared, as to throw the student upon his own resources, and teach him how to study; not to relieve him of the fatigue of mental effort, by furnishing him not only the results, but the processes of the editor's researches. The "notes" should discharge the office of a Mentor, pointing out the road to literary distinction; and not perform the drudgery of a pack-horse, carrying the young idler with all his "luggage," up the steep of knowledge. Helps, rightly administered, excite thought, and promote industry; but when furnished in excess, they beget satiety, allay curiosity, and encourage indolence. Idle and indifferent students always take the precaution to provide themselves with text-books which afford the most abundant aid to the learner. Here their vigilance ends. The pleasure of reading is substituted for the labor of learning. This is better than absolute inaction. There is occupation in it, but "it is rather the swing of an easy chair, than the grasp and tug of a strong rower, striving to keep time with one stronger than himself." Let the young student, who thus seeks to lay his intellectual burdens upon an attendant porter, be addressed in the language of the stern Persius:

"tibi luditur! Effluis, amens!

Contemnere! Sonat vitium percussa maligne
Respondet viridi non cocta fidelia, limo.

Udum et molle lutum es, nunc, nunc properandus et acri
Fingendus sine fine rota!"

Persius, Sat. 3: 20-25.

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