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to receive the best and fairest printing; and like a new bright silver dish never occupied, to receive and keep clean any good thing that is put into it.
And thus, will in children, wisely wrought withal, may easily be won to be very well willing to learn. And wit in children, by nature, namely memory, the only key and keeper of all learning, is readiest to receive and surest to keep any manner of thing that is learned in youth: This, lewd (vulgar] and learned, by common experience, know to be most true. For we remember nothing so well when we be old as those things which we learned when we were young; and this is not strange, but common in all nature's works. Every man sees (as I said before) new wax is best for printing ; new clay fittest for working ; new-shorn wool aptest for soon and surest dyeing ; new fresh flesh, for good and durable salting. And this similitude is not rude, nor borrowed of the larder house, but out of his schoolhouse, of whom the wisest of England need not be ashamed to learn. Young grafts grow not only soonest, but also fairest, and bring always forth the best and sweetest fruit: young whelps learn easily to carry; young popinjays learn quickly to speak : and so, to be short, if in all other things, though they lack reason, sense, and life, the similitude of youth is fittest to all goodness, surely nature in mankind is most beneficial and effectual in this behalf.
Therefore, if to the goodness of nature be joined the wisdom of the teacher, in leading young wits into a right and plain way of learning, surely, children, kept up in God's fear, and governed by his grace, may most easily be brought well to serve God and country both by virtue and wisdom.
But if will and wit, by farther age, be once allured from innocency, delighted in vain sights, filled with foul talk, crooked with willfulness, hardened with stubbornness, and let loose to disobedience, surely it is hard with gentleness, but unpossible with severe cruelty, to call them back to good frame again. For where the one perchance may bend it, the other shall surely break it; and so instead of some hope, leave an assured desperation, and shameless contempt of all goodness, the farthest point in all mischief, as Xenophon doth most truly and most wittily mark.
Therefore, to love or to hate, to like or contemn, to ply this way or that way to good or to bad, ye shall have as ye use a child in his youth.
And one example, whether love or fear doth work more in a child, for virtue and learning, I will gladly report; which may be heard with some pleasure, and followed with more profit. Before I went into Germany, I came to Broadgate in Leicestershire, to take my leave of that noble Lady Jane Grey, to whom I was exceeding much beholding. Her parents, the Duke and Duchess, with all the household, gentlemen and gentlewomen, were hunting in the park : I found her in her chamber, reading “Phædon Platonis” in Greek, and that with as much delight as some gentlemen would read a merry tale in Boccace. After salutation, and duty done, with some other talk, I asked her why she would lose such pastime in the park ? Smiling she answered me: “I wis, all their sport in the park is but a shadow to that pleasure that I find in Plato: alas, good folk, they never felt what true pleasure meant.
66 And how came you, madame,” quoth I, “ to this deep knowledge of pleasure, and what did chiefly allure you unto it: seeing, not many women, but very few men, have attained thereunto." "I will tell you,” quoth she, “and tell you a truth, which perchance you will marvel at. One of the greatest benefits that ever God gave me is that he sent me so sharp and severe parents, and so gentle a schoolmaster. For when I am in presence either of father or mother, whether I speak, keep silence, sit, stand, or go, eat, drink, be merry, or sad, be sewing, playing, dancing, or doing anything else, I must do it, as it were, in such weight, measure, and number, even so perfectly, as God made the world ; or else I am so sharply taunted, so cruelly threatened, yea presently sometimes with pinches, nips, and bobs, and other ways which I will not name for the honor I bear them, so without measure misordered, that I think myself in hell till time come that I must go to Mr. Elmer, who teacheth me so gently, so pleasantly, with such fair allurements to learning, that I think all the time nothing whiles I am with him. And when I am called from him, I fall on weeping, because whatsoever I do else but learning is full of grief, trouble, fear, and whole misliking unto me: and thus my book hath been so much my pleasure, and bringing daily to me more pleasure and more, that in respect of it, all other pleasures, in very deed, be but trifles and troubles unto me. I remember this talk gladly, both because it is so worthy of memory, and because also it was the last talk that ever I had, and the last time that ever I saw that noble and worthy lady.
I could be over-long, both in showing just causes, and in reciting true examples, why learning should be taught rather by love than fear. He that would see a perfect discourse of it, let him read that learned treatise, which my friend Joan. Sturmius wrote "de Institutione Principis," to the Duke of Cleves.
The godly counsels of Solomon and Jesus the son of Sirach, for sharp keeping in and bridling of youth, are meant rather for fatherly correction than masterly beating, rather for manners than for learning; for other places, than for schools. For God forbid but all evil touches, wantonness, lying, picking, sloth, will, stubbornness, and disobedience should be with sharp chastisement daily cut away.
THE LADIES OF ENGLAND.
BY JOHN LYLY.
(From “Euphues and his England.")
(John Lyly, English stylist, was born in Kent, 1553. He graduated from Magdalen College, Oxford, 1573; studied also at Cambridge. He was in Lord Burghley's household, vice master of St. Paul's choristers; member of Parliament (1597–1601); buried November 30, 1606. He published “Euphues, or the Anatomie of Wit" (1579), “Euphues and his England” (1580), and several comedies later.]
Is not this a glass, fair ladies, for all other countries to behold, where there is not only an agreement in faith, religion, and counsel, but in friendship, brotherhood and living? By whose good endeavors vice is punished, virtue rewarded, peace established, foreign broils repressed, domestical cares appeased ? What nation can of counselors desire more? what dominion, that excepted, hath so much? when neither courage can prevail against their chivalry, nor craft take place against their counsel, nor both joined in one be of force to undermine their country.
When you have dazzled your eyes with this glass, behold I've another. It was my fortune to be acquainted with certain English gentlemen, which brought me to the court, where, when I came, I was driven into amaze to behold the lusty and brave gallants, the beautiful and chaste ladies, the rare and godly orders, so as I could not tell whether I should most commend virtue or bravery. At the last, coming oftener thither than it beseemed one of my degree, yet not so often as they desired my company, I began to pry after their manners, natures, and lives, and that which followeth I saw, whereof whoso doubteth I will swear.
The ladies spend the morning in devout prayer, not resembling the gentlewomen in Greece and Italy, who begin their morning at midnoon and make their evening at midnight, using sonnets for psalms and pastimes for prayers, reading the epistle of a lover when they should peruse the Gospel of our Lord, drawing wanton lines when death is before their face, as Archimedes did triangles and circles when the enemy was at his back. Behold, ladies, in this glass, that the service of God is to be preferred before all things, imitate the English damoselles, who have their books tied to their girdles, not feathers, who are as cunning in the Scriptures as you are in Ariosto or Petrarch, or any book that liketh you best and becometh you most.
For bravery I cannot say that you exceed them, for certain it is the most gorgeous court that ever I have seen, read, or heard of; but yet do they not use their apparel so nicely as you in Italy, who think scorn to kneel at service for fear of wrinkles in your silks, who dare not lift up your head to heaven for fear of rumpling the ruffs in your neck, yet your hands, I conceive, are holden up rather, I think, to show your rings than to manifest your righteousness. The bravery they use is for the honor of their prince, the attire you wear for the alluring of your prey; the rich apparel maketh their beauty more seen, your disguising causeth your faces to be more suspected; they resemble in their raiment the elfrich, who, being gazed on, closeth her wings and hideth her feathers, you in your robes are not unlike the peacock, who, being praised, spreadeth his tail and bewrayeth his pride. Velvets and silks in them are like gold about a pure diamond, in you like a green hedge about a filthy dunghill." Think not, ladies, that because you are decked with gold you are endued with grace; imagine not that shining like the sun in earth ye shall climb the sun in heaven; look diligently into this English glass, and then shall you see that the more costly your apparel is the greater your courtesy should be, that you ought to be as far from pride as you are from poverty, and as near to princes in beauty as you are in brightness. Because you are brave disdain not those
who are base; think with yourselves that russet coats have their christendom, that the sun when he is at his height shineth as well upon coarse kersey as cloth of tissue; though you have pearls in your ears, jewels in your breasts, precious stones on your fingers, yet disdain not the stones in the street, which, although they are nothing so noble, yet are they much more necessary. Let not your robes hinder your devotion ; learn of the English ladies that God is worthy to be worshiped with the most price, to whom you ought to give all praise: then shall you be like stars to the wise, who are now but staring flocks to the foolish, then shall you be praised of most who are now pointed at of all, then shall God bear with your folly who now abhorreth your pride.
As the ladies in this blessed island are devout and brave, so are they chaste and beautiful ; insomuch that when I first beheld them I could not tell whether some mist had bleared mine eyes or some strange enchantment my mind : for it may be, thought I, that in this island either some Artimedorus or Lisimandro, or some odd necromancer did inhabit, who would show me fairies, or the body of Helen, or the new shape of Venus ; but coming to myself and seeing that my senses were not changed but hindered, that the place where I stood was no enchanted castle but a gallant court, I could scarce restrain my voice from crying, “ There is no beauty but in England." There did I behold them of pure complexion, exceeding the lily and the rose, of favor (wherein the chiefest beauty consisteth) surpassing the pictures that were feigned, or the magician that would feign, their eyes piercing like the sunbeams yet chaste, their speech pleasant and sweet yet modest and courteous, their gait comely, their bodies straight, their hands white, all things that man could wish or woman would have, which how much it is none can set down, whenas the one desireth as much as may be, the other more. And to these beautiful molds, chaste minds: to these comely bodies, temperance, modesty, mildness, sobriety, whom I often beheld merry yet wise, conferring with courtiers yet warily; drinking of wine yet moderately, eating of delicates yet but their ear full, listening to discourses of love but not without reasoning of learning: for there it more delighteth them to talk of Robin Hood than to shoot in his bow, and greater pleasure they take to hear of love than to be in love. Here, ladies, is a glass that will make you blush for shame and look wan for anger; their