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which are singularly interesting. Among these may bricks. One of them being handed to the youth, the be noticed the remarkable susceptibility of the majority instructor takes the other, and placing it in a certain of idiots to musical sounds. Nearly all are acutely position, requires that the remaining piece shall be sensible of this influence, though they may be unable to moved by the pupil so as to correspond with it in si. utter a note or intelligible sound; and many, ignorant tuation. At first, little or no idea of the intention is and incapable in other respects, manifest a remarkable formed, and some assistance becomes necessary. In a power of imitating with the voice any simple air which short time, however, an appreciation of the object has been carefully and repeatedly executed for their sought is engendered, and the pupil will readily cause benefit. This sensibility of the organ of hearing be his portion to assume the various positions of the opcomes important as a means of producing impressions posite one. When this is accomplished, an increased and awakening emotions. By a judicious education of number should be employed, and the faculty of imitathe ear, the tutor acquires both a capability of commu- tion cultivated, by arranging one set in a certain order, nicating pleasing sensations, and also an increased to be followed by the pupil with the other set. Sucpower of enforcing obedience by a careful and marked ceeding to this exercise, domestic implements may be intonation of his own voice, when imparting the various introduced, and their uses taught through the power of necessary directions to his pupils. Although in general imitation. Thus, by gradual and progressive steps, innaturally acute, yet this sense should receive a like syste-struction in various easy occupations may ultimately matic culture with the others. In addition to the regu- be inculcated, and the apparently hopeless object renlar gradations of the gamut, impressions should be made dered useful and happy by means at once simple and by striking various sonorous bodies together, and by ut- | applicable. tering the different vocal expressions indicative of the From what has been already advanced, the reader emotions of the mind. It may be here remarked that will perceive that the impressions received by a sound there appears to be a greater susceptibility to lively and infant mind intuitively, require to be communicated by well-marked instrumental music than to that produced artificial means to the idiot. In pursuing those higher by the voice.
branches of instruction which prepare him to enter on In following out the foregoing directions respecting active and useful avocations, the same principle must the cultivation of the senses, great discretion will be be carefully kept in view. Before the attempt is made absolutely necessary on the part of the tutor in adjust to instruct the pupil in any handicraft employment, his ing the exercises to each particular case, as well as to ideas of form, and his capability of describing various the relative imperfections of the different organs ob- figures in chalk, must be fully cultivated. This is an servable in the same individual. Careful observation, exercise which usually excites an agreeable impression combined with a fair amount of tact, will, however, among the pupils, and is accordingly entered on with lead to an adaptation of suitable means to each pupil. readiness and pleasure. A black board being provided, It may here be remarked that too rigid an observance the tutor draws upon it, by means of a rule and chalk, of the above directions should not be enforced. Con- a single line; then requires that a similar one shall be siderable latitude should be taken by the tutor, lest, by imitated by each pupil in succession. The first lesson following too rigidly the somewhat artificial, though is devoted to a perpendicular line, the next to a horiscientific and progressive order of cultivating the senses, zontal, and the following one to an oblique. a degree of irksomeness might in some instances be As soon as the pupil has made each respective line, produced: To prevent this, frequent opportunities he should be required to utter the word, up, flat, slant, should be made available of directing the notice of the according as the line is perpendicular, horizontal, or pupil to all ordinary objects which come within the oblique. After this combined exercise of both hands range of his observation. He should be made as fami- has been duly practised, he should be taught to draw a liar with their names and uses as his imperfect capa- straight line without the aid of a rule. Then the three city will allow. He should be taught to handle various lines he has been taught being connected at each exarticles, to attend to personal cleanliness, to dress and tremity, a triangle becomes represented on the board. undress, as well as to take his food, without assistance. To familiarise him, or rather to impress him, with a To accomplish all these objects, the force of example just conception of the nature of this picture, place in must be brought into operation, and much reliance his hand the triangular piece of wood formerly emmust also be placed on the ingenuity, judgment, pa- ployed to impart ideas of form, and encourage him to tience, and perseverance of the instructor.
compare it with the figure on the board. By so doing, In pursuing a systematic course of training, it will he becomes aware that the lines he has made constitute be found that the imitative tendency is strongly im a representation of the substance he holds in his hand. planted in the objects before us. This is a fortunate A little reflection will convince us that the various circumstance, as, by a judicious use of that well-known steps embraced in this simple lesson are of great value influence which the stronger has over the weaker mind, in creating steadiness and capability of directing the a valuable means of leading forward, regulating, and hand, in perfecting the conception of form, and in generendering useful the rudest and most inert materials is rating a power to draw a representation of a simple placed in our hands. Of all the various elementary object. principles brought into operation in the tuition of idiots, Whenever some proficiency is attained in drawing this is the most powerful and important. It fortunately straight lines, the pupil should be taught to describe a happens that so useful an agent is applicable in all cases, curve; first by the aid of the rule, one extremity of and may be made to bear with due efficacy upon which being fixed by the thumb, forms an axis, and each, taking, as the faculties become developed, a higher becomes the centre of the circle. Subsequently, the range of action. It may be divided into three kinds or hands should be exercised in forming curves without stages: first, the simple motions of the limbs; next, the aid of any instrument. After some practice of the the handling of objects; and lastly, the moral influence eye and hand, in proportion to the capacity of the pupil, of example in all that relates to conduct and duty. The these preliminary exercises in the art of drawing should manner of causing the pupil to conceive and follow the be followed up by efforts to impart the power of reprevarious positions of the tutor having been already de- senting simple objects. This will be effected with the scribed when speaking on the regulation of muscular greatest ease by presenting the mathematical figures action, we proceed to the consideration of the more ad-shaped in wood for imitation, beginning with the trivanced stage-namely, the method to be employed with angle, and passing to the square, circle, oblong, oval, a view of leading, by means of the imitative tendency, &c. In due time, simple implements, with which the to the use of various implements.
youth has become familiar, should be held up, that he The first step in this important procedure may be may attempt a rude picture of them. accomplished by placing on the table two pieces of Several advantages ensue from this course of tuition. wood, about the size and shape of ordinary building The object sought is not to make a painter, but to
expand and cultivate the mind, to open out stores of that every step already taken bears on the same end in improvement and enjoyment by this simplest of lan a most material degree. The faculties have been cul. guages—the hieroglyphical. It also serves a most use tivated, knowledge imparted, and an affectionate regard ful purpose in perfecting ideas of shape, and a power of for, and obedient reliance on, the tutor is felt. During imitation which can ultimately be turned to good ac- the whole progress of intellectual training, it is vitally count in manual operations requiring a capacity to cut important that the moral sense be regarded, and that and work out rude materials into useful articles.
means should be taken to regulate and cultivate it. The The first instruction in letters is founded on the pre- first object to be accomplished is to prevent the pupil liminary exercise respecting a straight line and curve, from committing any evil act; the next, to direct him the various combinations of which form the complete to a more improved conduct by constant supervision; alphabet. This important branch of instruction is and lastly, to promote a desire and will to continue such greatly facilitated, and precise ideas respecting the conduct when no control is exercised over him. It will symbols of language are created, by first making known be perceived that, in training the moral sense, a course those letters which consist of simple lines, next the very similar to that adopted in the regulation of muscircle, and lastly those consisting of a straight line and cular action is recommended to be pursued; namely, portion of the circle. We may here remark, though first the prevention of vicious tendencies and habits; not forming a part of this portion of instruction, that next, a judicious regulation under control; and lastly, a when a consonant is represented, the simple sound free and unrestrained power, stimulated by due excitshould be associated with it, not that compound with a ants. vowel which is usually employed in ordinary schools. In accomplishing this latter and very exalted duty; This both aids utterance, and prevents confused no- the pupil should be taught to notice, compare, and tions.
judge-in fact, to reason, and then to will. He should Most idiots are mute; that is to say, they do not be made to feel his wants both in food and clothing, and utter any intelligible sounds, owing to causes analogous to supply them by fetching the necessary articles from to those which impede control over muscular action in a distant part of the establishment. When conducting other parts of the body. The means of cultivating the this moral tuition, the first dawning of a better disorgan of speech consist in producing successive motions position should be carefully looked for, and made availof the jaw, lips, and tongue. When the faculty of imi- able when discovered. It is probable that, after the tation is developed, and the pupil is able to control the perverse propensities have been conquered, and the muscles of those parts, the object may be easily attained pupil has submitted to direction in a better course, if the tutor exhibit the necessary movements. But in some manifestation of a new desire or will may become some cases, both the tendency to follow the actions of apparent. This, if correct, should be actively encouothers, and the power over the vocal apparatus, are so raged, and other aids sought for to cultivate and graimperfect, that it becomes necessary to aid the muscles. tify pure tastes and feelings. By these means he will, The jaw should be opened and closed, the lips brought in course of time, be made sensible of many rational into various positions by the use of the fingers, and the enjoyments, the gratification of which can be turned to tongue moved by means of a paper knife.
good account as rewards for improved conduct. When, however, imitation and power of motion are Our remarks on the tuition specially adapted to the more perfect, the mechanical assistance is unnecessary. idiotic having already occupied so much space, we are Such exercises as whistling, sucking a ferule, holding a unable to dwell at any length on the means applicable small body between the lips, protruding the tongue, and to those children in whom the development of the menmoving it in every direction, should be practised. After tal faculties has been retarded, owing to the occurrence these muscular actions have been many times exercised, of certain actions of the brain which have supervened a simple sound should be uttered by the tutor, and after birth. The gymnastic exercises calculated to inrepeated till the pupil does the same. When he be- vigorate the bodily functions may be safely encouraged, comes perfect in uttering simple labials and linguals, but it will be advisable to adopt precautions respecting he should practised in uttering consecutive syllables. those agents destined to stimulate the brain in a direct
The power of arrangement may be taught by placing manner, lest, by an injudicious excitement of a disorseveral square and oblong pieces of wood so as to form dered organ, additional disturbance arise which it may a certain figure, to be imitated by the pupil. As soon be difficult to allay. The advice of a medical man as some knowledge of letters is communicated, he should should be sought, who, taking into account the cause be taught the sound of two letters combined, and then which has operated in preventing the expansion of the of those which form a word. The instruction in this mind, will be able to suggest what exercises are likely department is greatly facilitated by having the letters to prove advantageous, and what prejudicial. on separate portions of card, so that they can be selected Something remains to be said respecting the properand brought together. The first words formed should ties of the individual required to execute this nice and be substantives of one syllable only, as hat, cap, &c. delicate work of tuition. He who is employed in the The object should also be presented at the time, so as task should possess many amiable qualities. A mild, to impress the mind with the power of the letters em gentle, persuasive, serene, and charitable nature should ployed in forming the word. No words should be used be sought for, but at the same time a weak and yieldof which the meaning has not been communicated. ing disposition is to be avoided. With much calm self
From substantives proceed to adjectives : show that a possession should be united an equal share of firmness, hat may be white or black; then to verbs: form the consistency, and perseverance. Those endowments of sentence move the hat,' and when moving it, point to temper, address, forbearance, superior judgment, and the verb. So with prepositions, place an object in, on, strong determination, constituting a power to command, under the hat, &c. repeating the respective preposition, are especially needed; as well as that ready and decisire and showing the word whenever the object is placed in appliance of just means to every emergency, usually dethese different situations.
nominated tact. Considerable play and power of voice, We now approach a most important department of gesture, and look, are necessary to fix attention, commutuition; namely, that of moral guidance. Owing to nicate an impression, and enforce obedience. A capathe inherent deficiencies already described, the several bility to enter with spirit on various games and pasactions of idiots, constituting conduct, belong in a great times, and a facility of expressing emotion, as well as measure to that class termed evil. To check this unfor- a taste for music, are all desirable qualities. tunate tendency, and to cultivate the moral sense, so as The power of observation should be studiously apto engender ideas of duty and improved conduct, form plied, the peculiarities of each pupil carefully marked, the highest office of the tutor. Although certain influ- and met with that discretion which can alone lead to ences about to be described may be said strictly to belong to the class of moral agents, yet it is to be observed We have now traced some of the essential influences
destined to elevate the most inert and degraded crea across the slate; but before he could finish it, his little ture, by the education of the whole being, to the like- hand failed, his pencil dropped, and giving up in despair, ness of man. The means are as simple and applicable he burst into tears, and wept long and bitterly. After as they are sound and philosophical, and it is only ne- his recovery, Hutton's Mathematics and the Cambridge cessary to use them with energy and discretion, to se Mathematics were added to his few books, and in the cure happy results.
winter of 1844-5 he studied hard. In the following
spring, Dr Chester Dewry, a mathematician well known TRUMAN HENRY SAFFORD.
throughout the United States, writes of him thus :
• He is not one of the calculators by instinct, if I may This is the name of a boy now ten years of age, who, use the language, but a real regular reasoner, on correct if he lives, and continues to enjoy mental and corporeal and established principles, taking the easiest and most health, will in all probability be one of the most remark. direct course. As he had Hutton's Mathematics, and able men America has ever produced. He is not one of wanted some logarithms, his father told me he comthose . prodigies' in whom a single faculty is developed puted the logarithms from 1 to 60 by the formula given to a preternatural extent; for his general talent is by Hutton, which were afterwards found to be the nearly as conspicuous as his aptitude for mathematics. same in a table of logarithms for the same number of He has both the will and the power to learn in a very decimals. He is a wonderful boy. His mind seems extraordinary degree, and his success cannot by any bent on the study of mathematics, and he takes his means be ascribed, as in other cases, to the collective books about with him, that he may study some every energies of his mind being turned into a single channel. day. He was also much interested in three lectures on
He was born at Royalton, Windsor County, Vermont, chemistry that he attended. He seems very able to on the 6th of January 1836. His father is a farmer, make a practical application of his knowledge. His and a person of considerable intelligence; and both his mind is too active; and when roused in the night, or parents, during the earlier portion of their lives, were made wakeful by his nervous temperament, it is often instructors of youth. From his father he appears to difficult to arrest the current of his thoughts on some have inherited his passion for mathematical studies, interesting calculation. The study of mathematical and from his mother a nervous temperament, so ex- relations seems to be amusement to him.' quisite,
He was now taken to Hanover, where he saw for the * That one might almost say his body thought.'
first time an extensive collection of books and mathe
matical instruments. The sight made the poor nervous In his first year he was so delicate, so fragile, that student wild with excitement; and when taken away, he perhaps no other mother could have reared him; but was drowned in tears. On returning home from a little from the wan unearthly lips of the infant there came tour, in the course of which he had been introduced to questions that made the listeners start and thrill by various scientific men, and had his library enriched by their preternatural intelligence. It seemed as if he had several useful acquisitions, he set about constructing come into the world with a craving for knowledge, an almanac, which was actually put to press in the which he waited only for the gift of speech to wreak autunın of 1845, having been cast when its author was upon expression. But it was not till his third year just nine years and a half old. In the following year that the grand bias of his mind was suspected; nor did he calculated four different almanac calendars-one for this fully develop itself till three years after. His pa- Cincinnati, which was published with a portrait; one rents had alrcady amused themselves with his power of for Philadelphia; one for Boston; and one for his native calculating numbers; but one day now, as we are told, Vermont. . While getting up the Cincinnati one, he he remarked to his mother, that if he knew how many became much abstracted in his manner, wandered about rods it was round his father's large meadow, he could with his head down, talking to himself, &c. as is his tell the measure in barleycorns. When his father came manner while originating new rules. His father apin, she mentioned it to him; and he, knowing the di- proached him, and inquired what he was doing, and mensions of the field, made a calculation, and told the found that he had originated a new rule for getting boy it was 1040 rods; the lad, after a few minutes, gave moon risings and settings, accompanied with a table 617,760, as the distance in barleycorns, “ in his head,” which saves full one-fourth of the work in casting as the phrase is.'
moon risings. This rule, with a number of others This was sufficiently remarkable in a child of six years for calculating eclipses, is preserved with his manuof age; but before his eighth year, he had gone to the script almanacs in the library of Harvard University.' extent of the famous Zerah Colburn's powers, and had This almanac was placed upon a par by scientific men answered, in fifteen minutes, all the questions which with the works of mathematicians of mature years ; more recently made the reputation of a negro boy, de- and the wonderful boy, who saw two editions of his tecting three mistakes either of the press or the boy book sold almost immediately-one of 7000, and one of But these feats were not achieved—and this is the most 17,000 copies — became at once a public character. promising fact in his history-by the kind of intuition • Not satisfied,' says the Rev. H. W. Adams of him usually observable in such cases, but by means of study; at this time, with the old, circuitous processes of and it was observed that he improved rapidly by prac- demonstration, and impatient of delay, young Safford tice, and lost proportionately when he neglected the is constantly evolving new rules for abridging his work. cultivation of his powers. At this time he acquired He has found a new rule by which to calculate eclipses, from books some knowledge of algebra and geometry, hitherto unknown, so far as I know, to any mathemaand appeared to possess, in addition to the power of tician. He told me it would shorten the work nearly performing lengthy calculations in his head, the higher one-third. When finding this rule, for two or three power of comprehending and solving abstruse and diffi- days he seemed to be in a sort of trance. One morning cult questions in the various branches of mathematics.' very early he came rushing down stairs, not stopping
He was now attacked by typhus fever; and an inci- to dress himself, poured on to his slate a stream of dent of his illness is related which exhibits at once his figures, and soon cried out, in the wildness of his joy, passion for such studies and the extreme delicacy of his « Oh, father, I have got it - I have got it! It comes nervous temperament. When the alarming crisis of -it comes!”, his disease had passed, and he was slowly recovering, We now proceed to give the results of a regular exahe pled most affectingly with his mother for Day's mination of the boy, in which the questions were preAlgebra and his slate. His mother, aware of his ex- pared beforehand by a skilful mathematician, with the treme nervousness and irritability at the time, thought view of testing his powers to the uttermost. it would be better to gratify than to refuse him, and 'I went, firmly expecting to be able to confound him, gave him the Algebra and slate. He immediately com as I had previously prepared myself with various promenced making a long statement, which extended nearly blems for his solution. I did not suppose it possible for
a boy of ten years only to be able to play, as with a top, sary, as he performed a much larger one in his mind, as with all the higher branches of mathematics. But in I shall soon show. I then asked him to give me the this I was disappointed. Here follow some of the ques. cube root of 3,723,875. He replied quicker than I could tions I put to him, and his answers. I said, “ Can you write it, and that mentally," 155—is it not? Yes." tell me how many seconds old I was last March, the Then said I,“ What is the cube root of 5,177,717?" Said 12th day, when I was twenty-seven years old ?” He re- he, “ 173.” “Of 7,880,599 ?” He instantly said, “199." plied instantly, “ 85,255,200.” Then said I, “ The hour These roots he gave, calculated wholly in his mind, as and minute hands of a clock are exactly together at 12 quick as you could count one. I then asked his parents o'clock: when are they next together?" Said he, as if I might give him a hard sum to perform mentally. quick as thought, “1 h. 5 5-11 m.” And here I will They said they did not wish to tax his mind too much, remark, that I had only to read the sum to him once. nor often to its full capacity, but were quite willing to He did not care to see it, but only to hear it announced let me try him once. Then said I, "Multiply, in your once, no matter how long. Let this fact be remembered head, 365,365,365,365,365 by 365,365,365,365,365,365 !" in connection with some of the long and blind sums I He flew round the room like a top, pulled his pantaloons shall hereafter name, and see if it does not show his over the top of his boots, bit his hand, rolled his eyes in amazing power of conception and comprehension. Also, their sockets, sometimes smiling and talking, and then he would perform the sums mentally, and also on a slate, seeming to be in agony, until, in not more than one working by the briefest and strictest rules, and hurrying minute, said he, " 133,491,850,208,566,925,016.658,299, on to the answer with a rapidity outstripping all capa- 941,583,225!” The boy's father, Rev. C. N. Smith, city to keep up with him." The next sum I gave him and myself, had each a pencil and slate to take down was this: "A man and his wife usually drank out a cask the answer, and he gave it to us in periods of three of beer in twelve days; but when the man was from figures each, as fast as it was possible for us to write home, it lasted the woman thirty days. How many days them. And what was still more wonderful, he began would the man alone be drinking it?" He whirled to multiply at the left hand, and to bring out the answer about, rolled up his eyes, and replied at once, “20 from left to right, giving first “ 133,491," &c. Here, days.” Then said I, “What number is that which, being confounded above measure, I gave up the examination. divided by the product of its digits, the quotient is The boy looked pale, and said he was tired. He said it three; and if 18 be added, the digits will be inverted?” was the largest sum he had ever done!' He flew out of his chair, whirled round, rolled up his Well, indeed, may the poor child have looked pale, wild flashing eyes, and said in about a minute, “ 24." | after a three hours' examination like this! Such expeThen said I, “Two persons, A and B, departed from dif- riments resemble certain animal murders, in which the ferent places at the same time, and travelled towards victim is tortured to death for the gratification of scieneach other. On meeting, it appeared that A had tra- tific curiosity. It is no wonder that young Safford has velled 18 miles more than B, and that A could have been pronounced to be 'fore-doomed.' But more merci. gone B's journey in 152 days, but B would have been ful inquirers have given a very different account of the 28 days in performing A's journey. Ilow far did each relative working of his mind and body. They deny travel?” He few round the room, round the chairs, any distortion of features, any clouding of the brow, writhing his little body as if in agony, and in about a any diminution of the cheerful brightness of his boyish minute sprung up to me, and said, "A travelled 72 eye. They tell us that he walks with a free step round miles, and B 54 miles--didn't they? Yes.” Then said the room, threading his way behind chairs, gliding into I, “What two numbers are those whose sum, multiplied corners, and looking up at the questioner as he passes by the greater, is equal to 77, and whose difference, with a smile, apparently no more fatigued than a boy multiplied by the less, is equal to 12?” He again shot with his usual play. It would seem clear from this out of his chair like an arrow, flew about the room, his that if he is fore-doomed, it is not by nature, but by eyes wildly rolling in their sockets, and in about a But the frail constitution, the delicate health, minute said, “4 and 7.” “Well,” said I," the sum of two the small limbs, the brilliant eyes, the pallid countenumbers is 8, and the sum of their cubes 152. What nance, are not necessarily indications of early death; are the numbers?” Said he instantly, “3 and 5." Now, and there are circumstances in the case before us which in regard to these sums, they are the hardest in Davies's give every hope that, if the boy only receives fair-play, Algebra.
he may live long enough to obtain a permanent place in * I took him into the mensuration of solids. Said I, the constellation of science, instead of passing away, as "What is the entire surface of a regular pyramid, whose some anticipate, like the meteor of a moment. One of slant height is 17 feet, and the base a pentagon, of which these circumstances is what appears to us to be the each side is 33.5 feet?” In about two minutes, after curious and interesting fact, that in him the intellec. amplifying round the room, as his custom is, he replied, tual does not require to draw upon the physical map for * 3354.5558." “ How did you do it?" said I. He an- aid in extraordinary emergencies. In ordinary cases, swered, “Multiply 33.5 by 5, and that product by 8.5, when the feats, as in the present, are not performed by and add this product to the product obtained by squar- intuition, but are the result of previous study, the caling 33.5, and multiplying the square by the tabular area culator or reasoner suspends, so far as he can, the taken from the table corresponding to a pentagon.” On exercise of those faculties that are applied to the uses of looking at this process, it is strictly scientific. Add to the body: he abstracts his senses from external objects, this the fact, that I was examining him on different and appears either to exact from them some mysterious branches of mathematics requiring the application of aid within, or at least to require a strict neutrality. different rules, and that he went from one sum to an. With the Vermont boy, on the contrary, the external other with rapidity, performing the work in his mind perceptions seem to quicken in the mental excitement. when asked, and the wonder is still greater. Then I The exercise of his body goes on at the same moment desired him to find the surface of a sphere. “Hence,” with the exercise of his mind; and if he is engaged in said I, "required the area of the surface of the earth, its any ordinary employment at the time, instead of susdiameter being 7921 miles ?” He replied as quick as pending it, he redoubles his energy. This affords s thought, “ 197,111,024 square miles." To do it, he had hope that in his case the mind may not be worked in to square 7921, and multiply the product by 3.1416. any fatal disproportion. Then I wished him to give me the solidity of a sphere; The value of that mind may be collected from the therefore, said I, "What is the solidity of the earth, the following statements by Mr Adams, the gentleman who mean diameter being 7918.7 miles ?” He writhed about, tested its powers so rigorously. flew rapidly about the room, flashed his eyes, and in * But young Safford's strength does not lie wholly in about a minute said, “ 259,992,792,083." To do this, he the mathematics. He has a sort of mental absorption. multiplied the cube of 7918.7 by 5236. I believe he is infant mind drinks in knowledge as the sponge used å few figures in doing this sum, but it was unneces- | does water. Chemistry, botany, philosophy, geography,
and history, are his sport. It does not make much and although somewhat sick of the details of its bloody difference what question you ask him, he answers very struggles, from their having been so frequently obreadily. I spoke to him of some of the recent dis- truded upon our notice, we regard the composition of coveries in chemistry. He understood them. I spoke its materials and character as legitimate objects of liteto him of the solidification of carbonic acid gas, by Pro- rary curiosity. One of the strangest departments of fessor Johnston of the Wesleyan University. He said such a subject is the Privateering system; and we now he understood it. Here his eyes flashed fire, and he proceed to offer some illustrations of a class of bellibegan to explain the process.
gerents who have not as yet received due attention • His memory, too, is very retentive. He has pored either from history or romance. This we shall do by over Gregory's Dictionary of the Arts and Sciences so means of a couple of individual portraits-one French, much, that I seriously doubt whether there can be a and one English-which may be taken as exhibiting, question asked him, drawn from either of those im- though of course in higher relief than usual, the general mense volumes, that he will not answer instantly. I features of the tribe. saw the volumes, and also noticed he had left his marks As for the system itself, it is a relic of the barbarism on almost every page. I asked to see his mathematical of the middle ages, organised and legalised by the folly works. He sprung into his study and produced me or depravity of modern governments. It is the piracy Greenleaf's Arithmetic, Perkins's Algebra, Playfair's of the northern barbarians and eastern infidels sancEuclid, Pike's Arithmetic, Davies's Algebra, Hutton's tioned by letters of marquema document which affects Mathematics, Flint's Surveying, the Cambridge Mathe- to give the right of reprisal, but, in reality, invests the matics, Gummere's Astronomy, and several nautical desperadoes of the country with the privilege to rob and almanacs. I asked him if he had mastered them all. murder. This sort of commission did not come geneHe replied that he had. And an examination of him, rally into fashion till the end of the sixteenth century; for the space of three hours, convinced me that he had; but once fairly afloat, the privateers continued to mainand not only so, but that he had far outstripped them. tain their flag in time of war, in spite of the bursts of His knowledge is not intuitive. He is a pure and pro- indignation which their excesses called forth from the found reasoner.'
neutral nations. Various attempts were made to bring What to do with this remarkable boy was the ques- them under legal restraint; but to impose any control tion. A neighbouring bank offered him a thousand but that of force upon ruffians called into action by dollars a year to enact the part of a machine for calcu- such sordid motives was impossible. Sometimes the lating interest. Another admirer of genius, equally Channel between France and England was swept so disposed to turn the penny by it, advised his father to clean by the sea guerillas of the two nations, that the carry him about the country as a show; in the hope, poor privateers must have starved if they had not no doubt, that his intellectual greatness might stand as turned their arms against neutrals. In 1758, a ship well in the market as the physical littleness of General belonging to Holland (with which country we were Tom Thumb. If this plan had been carried into effect, then at peace), having on board the Spanish ambaswe should have had him in England no doubt; when, sador on his way to Denmark, was boarded by three of course, her Majesty and her principal nobility would different squadrons of privateers, and plundered even have treated him with at least the distinction they of his excellency's baggage. A little hanging was had lavished, so honourably to themselves and to the cha- recourse to on this occasion; and in the following year, racter of the British court, upon the dwarf! Some the nuisance still continuing unabated, great numbers thought that he should be lavishly supplied with books, of the privateers, as they were taken and brought into and his genius left undisturbed to itself; while others the English ports from time to time, were consigned to contended that he ought to have the benefit of a public the gallows. The neglect of our internal police added education, superintended by men eminent for their ac to the disorders of the period; and the result, as we are quirements. This last opinion, we are happy to say, informed by historians, was, that an ingredient of savage was adopted by his father; who, on the invitation of ferocity mingled in the national character. the Harvard University, removed to Cambridge with Forty years later-in the first year or two of the his family, where about this time last year Truman present century-when the war raged bitterly between Henry Safford was placed under the charge of Principal France and England, the career of two adventurers Everett and Professor Pierce.
commenced, one on either side of the Channel, who The above is compiled, so far as the facts are con were destined to exercise some influence on the fortunes cerned, from a long article in a Boston (American) paper, of each other. called the Christian Alliance and Family Visitor.' Jérôme Harbour resided in a little sea-port on the
coast of Brittany--that is, when he was on shore ; for THE PRIVATE ER S.
although now only twenty-four years of age, he had
been fourteen years a sailor, man and boy. He was In order to recollect the last shots fired in the European little, fat, fair, with short arms and round shoulders. battle-field of this country, a man must now be well His face was the reverse of long ; but his small nose, up in middle age. The young know nothing of arms but small mouth, and small blue eyes, were lost in its width. from history; and they can hardly persuade themselves He was, in fact, anything but the pirate of poetry or that the most pacific old man in England, is the same romance in form; and in other respects he had nothing Iron Duke who commanded at Waterloo before they to distinguish him from the commonest of common came into the world. The trade of soldiering has no sailors, except his genius for sea robbery. When in his longer any necessary connection with fighting. Its twenty-fourth year, his uncle, a weaver at Vannes, left duties are merely the drill and parade, and the wear-him 20,000 francs—a large fortune either in Normandy ing of gay clothes. And although the officers, in their or Brittany ; and after twelve months' cogitations, asdifferent grades, are hardly so well paid as merchants' sisted by as much brandy as would have gone well-nigh clerks, still there is always a sufficient number found to float a letter of marque, he determined to invest his for so easy and amiable a service. It is true they have money in the purchase of a vessel, and go a privateering. a chance of being drafted, at some time or other, to the To present little surface; to take hold of the water farther East, several thousand miles away; but they by length rather than breadth ; to keep the sea in any know very well that in India they will meet with no weather; and to be able to run close in-shore at almost such equal enemies as were formerly grappled with in any depth—these were Jérôme's requirements in a Europe, while in China, it is a mere amusement to ship. And all these and more he found in a long, low, bring down the baldheaded Celestials—in fact, a human narrow schooner, which, notwithstanding, he cut down battue.
still farther; shaving her off almost to the water's edge, Under such circumstances, we look back upon war so that she ran constantly between two seas-one below as one of the interesting or terrible things of the past; / her keel, and the other above her always wet deck.