Catherine Beecher- Treatise on Domestic Economy (1841) (Selections)

[Source: Project Gutenberg]

Title: A Treatise on Domestic Economy
       For the Use of Young Ladies at Home and at School

Author: Catherine Esther Beecher

Release Date: June 14, 2007  [eBook #21829]

Language: English


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Transcriber's note:

      Page numbers 10 and 370 were skipped in the original text;
      they are not missing. There were two pages 355 and 356 in
      the original; the two between page 354 and the first page
      355 have been renumbered 354a and 345b and references to
      them in the text changed accordingly.

      Printer errors were corrected silently and hyphenation was
      made consistent, but variant spellings have been preserved.


For the Use of Young Ladies at Home, and at School.



Revised Edition,
With Numerous Additions and Illustrative Engravings.

Harper & Brothers, 82 Cliff Street.

Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1842, by
Thomas H. Webb, & Co.,
in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of Massachusetts.



whose intelligence and virtues have inspired admiration and respect,
whose experience has furnished many valuable suggestions, in this work,
whose approbation will be highly valued, and whose influence, in
promoting the object aimed at, is respectfully solicited, this work is
dedicated, by their friend and countrywoman,




The author of this work was led to attempt it, by discovering, in her
extensive travels, the deplorable sufferings of multitudes of young
wives and mothers, from the combined influence of _poor health_, _poor
domestics_, _and a defective domestic education_. The number of young
women whose health is crushed, ere the first few years of married life
are past, would seem incredible to one who has not investigated this
subject, and it would be vain to attempt to depict the sorrow,
discouragement, and distress experienced in most families where the wife
and mother is a perpetual invalid.

The writer became early convinced that this evil results mainly from the
fact, that young girls, especially in the more wealthy classes, _are not
trained for their profession_. In early life, they go through a course
of school training which results in great debility of constitution,
while, at the same time, their physical and domestic education is almost
wholly neglected. Thus they enter on their most arduous and sacred
duties so inexperienced and uninformed, and with so little muscular and
nervous strength, that probably there is not _one chance in ten_, that
young women of the present day, will pass through the first years of
married life without such prostration of health and spirits as makes
life a burden to themselves, and, it is to be feared, such as seriously
interrupts the confidence and happiness of married life.

The measure which, more than any other, would tend to remedy this evil,
would be to place _domestic economy_ on an equality with the other
sciences in female schools. This should be done because it _can_ be
properly and systematically taught (not _practically_, but as a
_science_), as much so as _political economy_ or _moral science_, or any
other branch of study; because it embraces knowledge, which will be
needed by young women at all times and in all places; because this
science can never be _properly_ taught until it is made a branch of
_study_; and because this method will secure a dignity and importance in
the estimation of young girls, which can never be accorded while they
perceive their teachers and parents practically attaching more value to
every other department of science than this. When young ladies are
taught the construction of their own bodies, and all the causes in
domestic life which tend to weaken the constitution; when they are
taught rightly to appreciate and learn the most convenient and
economical modes of performing all family duties, and of employing time
and money; and when they perceive the true estimate accorded to these
things by teachers and friends, the grand cause of this evil will be
removed. Women will be trained to secure, as of first importance, a
strong and healthy constitution, and all those rules of thrift and
economy that will make domestic duty easy and pleasant.

To promote this object, the writer prepared this volume as a _text-book_
for female schools. It has been examined by the Massachusetts Board of
Education, and been deemed worthy by them to be admitted as a part of
the Massachusetts School Library.

It has also been adopted as a text-book in some of our largest and most
popular female schools, both at the East and West.

The following, from the pen of Mr. George B. Emmerson, one of the most
popular and successful teachers in our country, who has introduced this
work as a text-book in his own school, will exhibit the opinion of one
who has formed his judgment from experience in the use of the work:

"It may be objected that such things cannot be taught by books. Why not?
Why may not the structure of the human body, and the laws of health
deduced therefrom, be as well taught as the laws of natural philosophy?
Why are not the application of these laws to the management of infants
and young children as important to a woman as the application of the
rules of arithmetic to the extraction of the cube root? Why may not the
properties of the atmosphere be explained, in reference to the proper
ventilation of rooms, or exercise in the open air, as properly as to the
burning of steel or sodium? Why is not the human skeleton as curious and
interesting as the air-pump; and the action of the brain, as the action
of a steam-engine? Why may not the healthiness of different kinds of
food and drink, the proper modes of cooking, and the rules in reference
to the modes and times of taking them, be discussed as properly as rules
of grammar, or facts in history? Are not the principles that should
regulate clothing, the rules of cleanliness, the advantages of early
rising and domestic exercise, as readily communicated as the principles
of mineralogy, or rules of syntax? Are not the rules of Jesus Christ,
applied to refine _domestic manners_ and preserve a _good temper_, as
important as the abstract principles of ethics, as taught by Paley,
Wayland, or Jouffroy? May not the advantages of neatness, system, and
order, be as well illustrated in showing how they contribute to the
happiness of a family, as by showing how they add beauty to a copy-book,
or a portfolio of drawings? Would not a teacher be as well employed in
teaching the rules of economy, in regard to time and expenses, or in
regard to dispensing charity, as in teaching double, or single entry in
bookkeeping? Are not the principles that should guide in constructing a
house, and in warming and ventilating it properly, as important to young
girls as the principles of the Athenian Commonwealth, or the rules of
Roman tactics? Is it not as important that children should be taught the
dangers to the mental faculties, when over-excited on the one hand, or
left unoccupied on the other, as to teach them the conflicting theories
of political economy, or the speculations of metaphysicians? For
ourselves, we have always found children, especially girls, peculiarly
ready to listen to what they saw would prepare them for future duties.
The truth, that education should be _a preparation for actual, real
life_, has the greatest force with children. The constantly-recurring
inquiry, 'What will be _the use_ of this study?' is always satisfied by
showing, that it will prepare for any duty, relation, or office which,
in the natural course of things, will be likely to come.

"We think this book extremely well suited to be used as a text-book in
schools for young ladies, and many chapters are well adapted for a
reading book for children of both sexes."

To this the writer would add the testimony of a lady who has used this
work with several classes of young girls and young ladies. She remarked
that she had never known a school-book that awakened more interest, and
that some young girls would learn a lesson in this when they would study
nothing else. She remarked, also, that when reciting the chapter on the
construction of houses, they became greatly interested in inventing
plans of their own, which gave an opportunity to the teacher to point
out difficulties and defects. Had this part of domestic economy been
taught in schools, our land would not be so defaced with awkward,
misshapen, inconvenient, and, at the same time, needlessly expensive
houses, as it now is.

Although the writer was trained to the care of children, and to perform
all branches of domestic duty, by some of the best of housekeepers, much
in these pages is offered, not as the result of her own experience, but
as what has obtained the approbation of some of the most judicious
mothers and housekeepers in the nation. The articles on Physiology and
Hygiene, and those on horticulture, were derived from standard works on
these subjects, and are sanctioned by the highest authorities.

_The American Housekeeper's Receipt Book_ is another work prepared by
the author of the Domestic Economy, in connexion with several
experienced housekeepers, and is designed for a supplement to this work.
On pages 354a and 354b will be found the Preface and Analysis of
that work, the two books being designed for a complete course of
instructions on every department of Domestic Economy.

The copyright interest in these two works is held by a board of
gentlemen appointed for the purpose, who, after paying a moderate
compensation to the author for the time and labour spent in preparing
these works, will employ all the remainder paid over by the publishers,
to aid in educating and locating such female teachers as wish to be
employed in those portions of our country, which are most destitute of

The contract with the publisher provides that the publisher shall
guaranty the sales and thus secure against any losses for bad debts, for
which he shall receive five _per cent_. He shall charge twenty per cent.
for commissions paid to retailers, and also the expenses of printing,
paper, and binding, at the current market prices, and make no other
charges. The net profits thus determined are then to be divided equally,
the publishers taking one half, and paying the other half to the board
above mentioned.


PREFACE,                                                              7



American Women should feel a peculiar Interest in Democratic
Institutions. The Maxim of our Civil Institutions. Its Identity
with the main Principle of Christianity. Relations involving
Subordination; why they are needful. Examples. How these Relations
are decided in a Democracy. What decides the Equity of any Law or
Institution. The Principle of Aristocracy. The Tendency of
Democracy in Respect to the Interests of Women. Illustrated in the
United States. Testimony of De Tocqueville. Miss Martineau's
Misrepresentations. In what Respects are Women subordinate? and
why? Wherein are they equal or superior in Influence? and how are
they placed by Courtesy? How can American Women rectify any real
Disadvantages involved in our Civil Institutions? Opinion of De
Tocqueville as to the Influence and Example of American Democracy.
Responsibilities involved in this View, especially those of
American Women,                                                       25



A Law of Moral Action to be noted. Its Application. Considerations
to be borne in Mind, in appreciating peculiar Trials. Application
to American Women. Difference between this and Aristocratic
Countries. How this affects the Interests of American Women. Effect
of Wealth, in this Country, on Domestic Service. Effects on the
Domestic Comfort of Women. Second peculiar Trial of American Women.
Extent of this Evil. The Writer's Observation on this Point.
Effects on the Anticipations of Mothers and Daughters. Infrequency
of Healthful Women in the Wealthy Classes. Causes which operate to
undermine the Female Constitution. Excitement of Mind. Course of
Intellectual Training. Taxation, in Domestic Life, of American
Mothers and Housekeepers. Exercise and Fresh Air needful to
balance Mental Excitement. Defect in American, compared with
English, Customs, in this Respect. Difference in the Health and
Youthfulness of Appearance between English and American Mothers.
Liabilities of American Women to the uncommon Exposures of a New
Country. Remarks of De Tocqueville and the Writer on this Point,      38



First Remedy suggested. Obligations of Wealthy Ladies on this
Point. How a Dearth of Domestics may prove a Blessing. Second
Remedy. Domestic Economy should be taught in Schools. Third Remedy.
Reasons for endowing Colleges and Professional Schools. Similar
Reasons exist for endowing Female Institutions. Present Evils in
conducting Female Education. A Sketch of a Model Female
Institution. Accommodations provided. Mode of securing Exercise to
Pupils. Objections to this answered. Calisthenics. Course of
Intellectual Discipline adopted. Mode of Division of Labor adopted.
Example of Illinois in Regard to Female Education. Economy of
Health and Time secured by such Institutions. Plan suggested for
the Early Education of Young Girls. Last Remedy suggested,            48



Impediment to making Domestic Economy a Study at School. First
Reason why it should be so made. State of Domestic Service
precarious. Second Reason. Examples illustrating. Third Reason.
Questions asked. First Objection; how answered. Next Objection; how
answered. Next Objection; how answered. Last Reason,                  63



Importance of a Knowledge of the Laws of Health, and of the Human
System, to Females. Construction of the Human Frame. BONES;
their Structure, Design, and Use. Engraving and Description. Spinal
Column. Engravings of Vertebræ. Exercise of the Bones. MUSCLES;
their Constitution, Use, and Connection with the Bones. Engraving and
Description. Operation of Muscles. NERVES; their Use. Spinal
Column. Engravings and Descriptions. Distortions of the Spine.
Engravings and Descriptions. BLOOD-VESSELS; their Object.
Engravings and Descriptions. The Heart, and its Connection with the
System. Engravings and Descriptions. ORGANS OF DIGESTION AND
RESPIRATION. Engraving and Description. Process of Digestion.
Circulation of the Blood. Process of Respiration. Necessity of Pure
Air. THE SKIN. Process of Perspiration. Insensible Perspiration.
Heat of the Body. Absorbents. Importance of frequent Ablutions and
Change of Garments. Follicles of Oily Matter in the Skin. Nerves of
Feeling,                                                              68



Responsibility of a Housekeeper in Regard to Health and Food. The
most fruitful Cause of Disease. Gastric Juice; how proportioned.
Hunger the Natural Guide as to Quantity of Food. A Benevolent
Provision; how perverted, and its Effects. A Morbid Appetite, how
caused. Effects of too much Food in the Stomach. Duty of a
Housekeeper in Reference to this. Proper Time for taking Food.
Peristaltic Motion. Need of Rest to the Muscles of the Stomach.
Time necessary between each Meal. Exceptions of hard Laborers and
active Children. Exercise; its Effect on all parts of the Body. How
it produces Hunger. What is to be done by those who have lost the
Guidance of Hunger in regulating the Amount of Food. On Quality of
Food. Difference as to Risk from bad Food, between Healthy Persons
who exercise, and those of Delicate and Sedentary Habits.
Stimulating Food; its Effects. Condiments needed only for Medicine,
and to be avoided as Food. Difference between Animal and Vegetable
Food. Opinion of some Medical Men. Medical Men agree as to the
Excess of Animal Food in American Diet. Extracts from Medical
Writers on this Point. Articles most easily digested. The most
Unhealthful Articles result from bad cooking. Caution as to Mode of
Eating. Reason why Mental and Bodily Exertions are injurious after
a full Meal. Changes in Diet should be gradual; and why. Drink most
needed at Breakfast; and why. Dinner should be the heartiest Meal;
and why. Little Drink to be taken while eating; and why. Extremes
of Heat or Cold; why injurious in Food. Fluids immediately absorbed
from the Stomach. Why Soups are hard of Digestion. Case of Alexis
St. Martin. Why highly-concentrated Nourishment is not good for
Health. Beneficial Effects of using Unbolted Flour. Scarcity of
Wheat under William Pitt's Administration, and its Effects. Causes
of a Debilitated Constitution from the Misuse of Food,                94



Responsibility of a Housekeeper in this Respect. Stimulating Drinks
not required for the Perfection of the Human System. Therefore
they are needless. First Evil in using them. Second Evil. Five
Kinds of Stimulating Articles in Use in this Country. First
Argument in Favor of Stimulants, and how answered. Second Argument;
how answered. The Writer's View of the Effects of Tea and Coffee on
American Females. Duty in Reference to Children. Black Tea the most
harmless Stimulant. Warm Drinks not needful. Hot Drinks injurious.
Effect of Hot Drinks on Teeth. Mexican Customs and their Effects
illustrating this. Opinion of Dr. Combe on this subject. Difference
between the Stimulus of Animal Food and the Stimulating Drinks
used. Common Habit of Drinking freely of Cold Water debilitating.
Persons taking but little Exercise require but little Drink,         106



Calculations made from Bills of Mortality; and Inference from them.
Causes of Infant Mortality. Of the Circulation in Infancy. Warm
Dress for Infants; and why. Investigations in France, and Results.
Dangers from the opposite Extreme. Effects of too much Clothing.
Rule of Safety. Featherbeds; why unhealthy in Warm Weather. Best
Nightgowns for Young Children. Clothing; how to be proportioned.
Irrational Dress of Women. Use of Flannel next the Skin. Evils of
Tight Dresses to Women. False Taste in our Prints of Fashions.
Modes in which Tight Dresses operate to weaken the Constitution.
Rule of Safety as to Looseness of Dress. Example of English Ladies
in Appropriateness of Dress,                                         112



Importance of Cleanliness not realized, without a Knowledge of the
Nature of the Skin. Foundation of the Maxim respecting the
Healthfulness of Dirt. Office of the Skin. Other Organs which
perform similar Duties. Amount of Matter daily exhaled by the Skin.
Effect of a Chill upon the Skin, when perspiring. Illustration of
this. Effect of closing the Pores of the Skin, with Dirt or other
Matter. The Skin absorbs Matter into the Blood. Reasons for a Daily
Ablution of the whole Body. Effects of Fresh Air on Clothing worn
next the Skin. Americans compared with other Nations as to Care of
the Skin. Cautions in Regard to a Use of the Bath. How to decide
when Cold Bathing is useful. Warm Bath tends to prevent Colds; and
why. When a Bath should be taken. Advantages of General Ablutions
to Children. Care of the Teeth,                                      118



Universal Impression in Respect to this Practice. Why it should be
regarded as American and Democratic. Practice in Aristocratic
Circles in England. Appeal to American Women. First Consideration
in Favor of Early Rising. Another Physiological Reason in its
Favor. Another Reason. Time necessary for Sleep. Proper Hours for
Rising and Retiring. Evils of protracted Sleep. Testimony of Sir
John Sinclair. Another Reason for Early Rising. Responsibility of
Parents for the Health and Industry of a Family. Effects of Early
Rising on General Society,                                           122



Causes which produce Delicacy and Decay of the Female Constitution.
Want of Exercise. Neglect of the Laws of Health. Want of Pure Air.
Objectionable Amusements. Sleeping by Day. Want of Exercise a
greater Cause of these Evils, than all the Others combined.
Importance of understanding the Influence of the Neglect or Abuse
of the Muscular System. Nerves of Sensation and of Motion. Both
need Exercise. Rules for Exercise. Importance of a Feeling of
Interest in taking Exercise. Walks merely for Exercise. Exercise
most proper for Young Girls. Exercise, more than any Thing else,
imparts fresh Strength and Vitality to all Parts of the Body.
Mistakes of Mothers and Teachers on this Subject. Effects of
neglecting to use the Muscles; Effects of excessive Use of them.
Effect of School Confinement and Seats. Extract from the Young
Lady's Friend. Lady Montagu. Daughter of a French Nobleman,          128



What are Good-manners. Defect in American Manners. Coldness and
Reserve of the Descendants of the Puritans accounted for. Cause of
the Want of Courtesy in American Manners. Want of Discrimination.
Difference of Principles regulating Aristocratic and Democratic
Manners. Rules for regulating the Courtesies founded on Precedence
of Age, Office, and Station, in a Democracy. Manners appropriate to
Superiors and Subordinates. Miss Martineau's Remarks on the
Universal Practice of Americans to give Precedence to Woman.
Peculiar Defect of Americans in this Respect. This to be remedied
in the Domestic Circle, alone. Rules of Precedence to be enforced
in the Family. Manners and Tones towards Superiors to be regulated
in the Family. Treatment of grown Brothers and Sisters by Young
Children. Acknowledgement of Favors by Children to be required.
Children to ask leave or apologize in certain Cases. Rules for
avoiding Remarks that wound the Feelings of Others. Rules of
Hospitality. Conventional Rules. Rules for Table Manners. Caution
as to teaching these Rules to Children. Caution as to Allowances to
be made for those deficient in Good-manners. Comparison of English
and American Manners, by De Tocqueville. America may hope to excel
all Nations in Refinement, Taste, and Good-breeding; and why.
Effects of Wealth and Equalisation of Labor. Allusion to the
Manners of Courts in the past Century,                               136



Influence of a Housekeeper on Domestic Happiness. Contrasts to
illustrate. Sympathy. Influence of Tones. Allowances to be made for
Housekeepers. Considerations to aid in regulating Temper and Tones.
First; Her Duties to be regarded as Dignified, Important, and
Difficult. Second; She should feel that she really has Great
Difficulties to meet and overcome. Third; She should deliberately
calculate upon having her Plans interfered with, and be prepared
for the Emergency. Fourth; All her Plans should be formed
consistently with the Means at Command. Fifth; System, Economy, and
Neatness, only valuable when they tend to promote the Comfort and
Well-being of the Family. Sixth; Government of Tones of Voice. Some
Persons think Angry Tones needful. They mistake. Illustration.
Scolding, Unlady-like, and in Bad Taste. A Forgiving Spirit
necessary. Seventh and Last Consideration offered; Right View of a
Superintending Providence. Fretfulness and Complaining sinful,       148



Question of the Equality of the Sexes, frivolous and useless.
Relative Importance and Difficulty of the Duties a Woman is called
to perform. Her Duties not trivial. More difficult than those of
the Queen of a great Nation. A Habit of System and Order necessary.
Right Apportionment of Time, General Principles. Christianity to be
the Foundation. Intellectual and Social Interests to be preferred
to Gratification of Taste or Appetite. The Latter to be last in our
Estimation. No Sacrifice of Health allowable. Neglect of Health a
Sin in the Sight of God. Regular Season of Rest appointed by the
Creator. Divisions of Time. Systematic Arrangement of House
Articles and other Conveniences. Regular Employment for each Member
of a Family. Children can be of great Service. Boys should be
taught Family Work. Advantage to them in Afterlife. Older Children
to take Care of Infants of a Family,                                 155



No Point of Duty more difficult to fix by Rule, than Charity. First
Consideration;--Object for which we are placed in this World. How to
be perfectly happy. Self-denying Benevolence. Important Distinction.
Second Consideration;--Natural Principles not to be exterminated,
but regulated and controlled. All Constitutional Propensities good,
and designed to be gratified. Their Abuses to be guarded against.
Third Consideration;--Superfluities sometimes proper, and sometimes
not. Fourth Consideration;--No Rule of Duty right for One and not
for All. The Opposite of this Principle tested. Some Use of
Superfluities necessary. Physical Gratifications should always be
subordinate to Social, Intellectual, and Moral Advantages.
Difficulties in the Way. Remarks upon them. Plan for Keeping an
Account of Necessaries and Superfluities. Untoward Results of our
Actions do not always prove that we deserve Blame. Examples of
Conformity to the Rules here laid down. General Principles to guide
in deciding upon Objects of Charity. Parable of Good Samaritan. Who
are our Neighbors. Those most in Need to be first relieved.
Intellectual and Moral Wants more necessary to be supplied than
Physical. Not much Need of Charity in supplying Physical Wants in
this Country. System of Associated Charities, in which many small
Sums are combined. Indiscriminate Charity--Very injurious to
Society, as a General Rule. Exceptions. Impropriety of judging of
the Charities of Others,                                             167



_Economy of Time._ Value of Time. Right Apportionment of Time. Laws
appointed by God for the Jews. Proportions of Property and Time the
Jews were required to devote to Intellectual, Benevolent, and
Religious Purposes. The Levites. The weekly Sabbath. The Sabbatical
Year. Three sevenths of the Time of the Jews devoted to God's
Service. Christianity removes the Restrictions laid on the Jews,
but demands all our Time to be devoted to our own best Interests
and the Good of our Fellow-men. Some Practical Good to be the
Ultimate End of all our Pursuits. Enjoyment connected with the
Performance of every Duty. Great Mistake of Mankind. A Final
Account to be given of the Apportionment of our Time. Various Modes
of economizing Time. System and Order. Uniting several Objects in
one Employment. Employment of Odd Intervals of Time. We are bound
to aid Others in economizing Time. _Economy in Expenses._ Necessity
of Information on this Point. Contradictory Notions. General
Principles in which all agree. Knowledge of Income and Expenses.
Every One bound to do as much as she can to secure System and
Order. Examples. Evils of Want of System and Forethought. Young
Ladies should early learn to be systematic and economical.
Articles of Dress and Furniture should be in Keeping with each
other, and with the Circumstances of the Family. Mistaken Economy.
Education of Daughters away from Home injudicious. Nice Sewing
should be done at Home. Cheap Articles not always most economical.
Buying by wholesale economical only in special cases. Penurious
Savings made by getting the Poor to work cheap. Relative
Obligations of the Poor and the Rich in Regard to Economy. Economy
of Providence in the Unequal Distribution of Property. Carelessness
of Expense not a Mark of Gentility. Beating down Prices improper in
Wealthy People. Inconsistency in American would-be Fashionables,     180



Intimate Connection between the Body and Mind. Brain excited by
improper Stimulants taken into the Stomach. Mental Faculties then
affected. Example of a Person having lost a Portion of his Skull.
Causes of Mental Diseases. Want of Oxygenized Blood. Fresh Air
absolutely necessary. Excessive Exercise of the Intellect or
Feelings a Cause of Derangement. Such Attention to Religion, as
prevents the Performance of other Duties, wrong. Teachers and
Parents should look to this. Unusual Precocity in Children usually
the Result of a Diseased Brain. Parents generally add Fuel to this
Fever. Idiocy often the Result, or the Precocious Child sinks below
the Average of Mankind. This Evil yet prevalent in Colleges and
other Seminaries. A Medical Man necessary in every Seminary. Some
Pupils always needing Restraint in Regard to Study. A Third Cause
of Mental Disease, the Want of Appropriate Exercise of the Various
Faculties of the Mind. Extract from Dr. Combe. Examples of Wealthy
Ladies. Beneficial Results of active Intellectual Employments.
Indications of a Diseased Mind,                                      195



No Subject on which American Women need more Wisdom, Patience,
Principle, and Self-control. Its Difficulties. Necessary Evils.
Miseries of Aristocratic Lands. Wisdom of Conforming to Actual
Circumstances. How to judge correctly respecting Domestics. They
should be treated as we would expect to be under similar
Circumstances. When Labor is scarce, its Value is increased.
Instability of Domestics; how it may be remedied. Pride and
Insubordination; how remedied. Abhorrence of Servitude a National
Trait of Character. Domestics easily convinced of the Appropriateness
of different Degrees of Subordination. Example. Domestics may be
easily induced to be respectful in their Deportment, and appropriate
in their Dress. Deficiencies of Qualifications for the Performance
of their Duties; how remedied. Forewarning, better than Chiding.
Preventing, better than finding Fault. Faults should be pointed
out in a Kind Manner. Some Employers think it their Office and Duty
to find Fault. Domestics should be regarded with Sympathy and
Forbearance,                                                         204



Necessity of a Knowledge of this Subject, to every Young Lady.
Examples. Extracts from Doctors Combe, Bell, and Eberle. Half the
Deaths of Infants owing to Mismanagement, and Errors in Diet.
Errors of Parents and Nurses. Error of administering Medicines to
Children, unnecessarily. Need of Fresh Air, Attention to Food,
Cleanliness, Dress, and Bathing. Cholera Infantum not cured by
Nostrums. Formation of Good Habits in Children,                      213



Physical Education of Children. Remark of Dr. Clark, and Opinion of
other Medical Men. Many Popular Notions relating to Animal Food for
Children, erroneous. The Formation of the Human Teeth and Stomach
does not indicate that Man was designed to live on Flesh. Opinions
of Linnæus and Cuvier. Stimulus of Animal Food not necessary to
Full Developement of the Physical and Intellectual Powers.
Examples. Of Laplanders, Kamtschatkadales, Scotch Highlanders,
Siberian Exiles, Africans, Arabs. Popular Notion that Animal Food
is more Nourishing than Vegetable. Different Opinions on this
Subject. Experiments. Opinions of Dr. Combe and others. Examples of
Men who lived to a great Age. Dr. Franklin's Testimony. Sir Isaac
Newton and others. Albany Orphan Asylum. Deleterious Practice of
allowing Children to eat at short Intervals. Intellectual Training.
Schoolrooms. Moral Character. Submission, Self-denial, and
Benevolence, the three most important Habits to be formed in Early
Life. Extremes to be guarded against. Medium Course. Adults
sometimes forget the Value which Children set on Trifles. Example.
Impossible to govern Children, properly, without appreciating the
Value they attach to their Pursuits and Enjoyments. Those who
govern Children should join in their Sports. This the best way to
gain their Confidence and Affection. But Older Persons should never
lose the Attitude of Superiors. Unsteadiness in Government.
Illustrations. Punishment from unsteady Governors, does little
Good. Over-Government. Want of Patience and Self-control in Parents
and Governors. Example of Parents more effectual than their
Precepts. Formation of Habits of Self-denial in Early Life. Denying
Ourselves to promote the Happiness of Others. Habits of Honesty and
Veracity. Habits of Modesty. Delicacy studiously to be cherished.
Licentious and Impure Books to be banished. Bulwer a Licentious
Writer, and to be discountenanced,                                   220



Women frequently called upon to direct in Cases of Indisposition.
Extremes to be avoided. Grand Cause of most Diseases, Excess in
Eating and Drinking. Fasting useful. Extracts from Doctors Burne
and Combe. Necessity of a Woman's Understanding the Nature and
Operation of Common Medicines. Simple Electuary. Discretion
required. Useful Directions in Regard to Nursing the Sick. Fresh
Air absolutely necessary. Frequent Ablutions important. Dressing a
Blister. Arrangements to be made beforehand, when practicable.
Importance of Cleanliness; Nothing more annoying to the Sick, than
a want of it. Necessity of a proper Preparation of Food, for the
Sick. Physicians' Directions to be well understood and implicitly
followed. Kindness, Patience, and Sympathy, towards the Sick,
important. Impositions of Apothecaries. Drugs to be locked up from
the Access of Children,                                              234



Medical Aid should be promptly resorted to. Suffocation, from
Substances in the Throat. Common Cuts. Wounds of Arteries, and
other severe Cuts. Bruises. Sprains. Broken Limbs. Falls. Blows on
the Head. Burns. Drowning. Poisons:--Corrosive Sublimate; Arsenic,
or Cobalt; Opium; Acids; Alkalies. Stupefaction from Fumes of
Charcoal, or from entering a Well, Limekiln, or Coalmine.
Hemorrhage of the Lungs, Stomach, or Throat. Bleeding of the Nose.
Dangers from Lightning,                                              240



Indefiniteness of Opinion on this Subject. Every Person needs some
Recreation. General Rules. How much Time to be given. What
Amusements proper. Those should always be avoided, which cause Pain,
or injure the Health, or endanger Life, or interfere with important
Duties, or are pernicious in their Tendency. Horse-racing,
Circus-riding, Theatres, and Gambling. Dancing, as now conducted,
does not conduce to Health of Body or Mind, but the contrary.
Dancing in the Open Air beneficial. Social Benefits of Dancing
considered. Ease and Grace of Manners better secured by a System of
Calisthenics. The Writer's Experience. Balls going out of Fashion,
among the more refined Circles. Novel-reading. Necessity for
Discrimination. Young Persons should be guarded from Novels. Proper
Amusements for Young Persons. Cultivation of Flowers and Fruits.
Benefits of the Practice. Music. Children enjoy it. Collections of
Shells, Plants, Minerals, &c. Children's Games and Sports. Parents
should join in them. Mechanical Skill of Children to be encouraged.
Other Enjoyments. Social Enjoyments not always considered in the
List of Duties. Main Object of Life to form Character. Family
Friendship should be preserved. Plan adopted by Families of the
Writer's Acquaintance. Kindness to Strangers. Hospitality. Change of
Character of Communities in Relation to Hospitality. Hospitality
should be prompt. Strangers should be made to feel at their Ease,    244



Importance to Family Comfort of well-constructed Houses. Rules for
constructing them. Economy of Labor. Large Houses. Arrangement of
Rooms. Wells and Cisterns. Economy of Money. Shape and Arrangement
of Houses. Porticoes, Piazzas, and other Ornaments. Simplicity to
be preferred. Fireplaces. Economy of Health. Outdoor Conveniences.
Doors and Windows. Ventilation. Economy of Comfort. Domestics.
Spare Chambers. Good Taste. Proportions. Color and Ornaments.
_Plans of Houses and Domestic Conveniences._ Receipts for
Whitewash,                                                           258



Wood Fires. Construction of Fireplaces. Firesets. Building a Fire.
Wood. Cautions. Stoves and Grates. Cautions. Stovepipes. Anthracite
Coal. Bituminous Coal. Proper Grates. Coal Stoves. _On Lights._
Lamps. Oil. Candles. Lard. Pearlash and Water for cleansing Lamps.
Care of Lamps. Difficulty. Articles needed in trimming Lamps.
Astral Lamps. Wicks. Dipping Wicks in Vinegar. Shades. Weak Eyes.
Entry Lamps. Night Lamps. Tapers. Wax Tapers for Use in Sealing
Letters. To make Candles. Moulds. Dipped Candles. Rush Lights,       280



All needful Accommodations should be provided. Plenty of Water,
easily accessible, necessary. Articles to be provided for Washing.
Substitutes for Soft Water. Common Mode of Washing. Assorting
Clothes. To Wash Bedding. Feathers. Calicoes. Bran-water.
Potato-water. Soda Washing. Soda Soap. Mode of Soda Washing.
Cautions in Regard to Colored Clothes, and Flannels. To Wash Brown
Linen, Muslins, Nankeen, Woollen Table-Covers and Shawls, Woollen
Yarn, Worsted and Woollen Hose. To Cleanse Gentlemen's Broadcloths.
To make Ley, Soft Soap, Hard Soap, White Soap, Starch, and other
Articles used in Washing,                                            284



To prepare Starch. Glue and Gum Starch. Beef's or Ox-Gall.
Starching Muslins and Laces. To Cleanse or Whiten Silk Lace, or
Blond, and White Lace Veils. _On Ironing._ Articles to be provided
for Ironing. Sprinkling, Folding, and Ironing,                       292



To Whiten Articles and Remove Stains from them. Mixtures to Remove
Stains and Grease. To Cleanse Silk Handkerchiefs and Ribands; Silk
Hose or Gloves; Down and Feathers; Straw and Leghorn Hats. _On
Coloring._ Pink, Red, Yellow, Blue, Green, Salmon, Buff, Dove,
Slate, Brown, Black, and Olive Colors,                               296



Proper Arrangement of Rooms. Shades and Colors. Carpets, Curtains,
and other Furniture, should be selected with Reference to each
other. Laying down Carpets. Blocks to prevent Sofas and Tables from
rubbing against Walls, and to hold Doors open. Footstools. Sweeping
Carpets. Tealeaves. Wet Indian Meal. Taking up and cleansing
Carpets. Washing Carpets. Straw Matting. Pictures and Glasses.
Curtains and Sofas. Mahogany Furniture. Unvarnished Furniture;
Mixtures for. Hearths and Jambs. Sweeping and Dusting Parlors,       302



Large Closet necessary. Dumb Waiter, or Sliding Closet. Furniture
for a Table. On Setting a Table. Rules for doing it properly;--for
Breakfast and Tea; for Dinner. On Waiting at Table. On Carving and
Helping at Table,                                                    306



Importance of well-ventilated Sleeping-rooms. Debility and
Ill-health caused by a Want of Pure Air. Chamber Furniture. Cheap
Couch. Bedding. Feathers, Straw, or Hair, Mattresses. To Make a
Bed. Domestics should be provided with Single Beds, and Washing
Conveniences. On Packing and Storing Articles. To Fold a
Gentleman's Coat and Shirt, and a Frock. Packing Trunks. Carpet
Bags. Bonnet Covers. Packing Household Furniture for Moving,         311



Importance of a Convenient Kitchen. Floor should be painted. Sink
and Drain. Washing Dishes. Conveniences needed. Rules. Kitchen
Furniture. Crockery. Iron Ware. Tin Ware. Wooden Ware. Basket Ware.
Other Articles. On the Care of the Cellar. Storeroom. Modes of
Destroying Insects and Vermin,                                       317



Importance of Young Girls being taught various Kinds of Stitching.
Directions for doing various Kinds of Work. Work-Baskets, and their
Contents. On Cutting and Fitting Garments. Silks. Cotton and Linen.
Old Silk Dresses quilted for Skirts. Flannel; White should be
colored. Children's Flannels. Nightgowns. Wrappers. Bedding.
Mending,                                                             324



On the Preparation of Soil. For Pot-Plants. On the Preparation of a
Hot-Bed. Planting Flower-Seeds. To plant Garden-Seeds. Transplanting.
To Re-pot House-Plants. On laying out Yards. Gardens. Flower-Beds.
Bulbs and Tuberous Roots. List of Various Kinds of Flowers, in
Reference to Color, and Height. Annuals. Climbing Plants. Perennials.
Herbaceous Roots. Shrubs; List of those most suitable for adorning
a Yard. Roses; Varieties of. Shade-Trees. Time for Transplanting.
Trees. Care of House Plants,                                         331



Different Modes of Propagation;--By Offsets; Cuttings; Layers;
Budding, or Inoculating; Ingrafting;--Whip-Grafting; Split-Grafting;
Stock-Grafting. Pruning. Thinning,                                   341



Value of Attention to this Subject. Preparation of Soil. Planting
of Seeds. Budding, Grafting, and Transplanting. Training the Limbs.
Attention to the Soil. Manuring. Filberts. Figs. Currants.
Gooseberries. Raspberries. Strawberries. Grapes. To Preserve Fruit;
Modes of Preserving Fruit-Trees. Fire Blight. Worms,                 347



Women should know how to take proper Care of Domestic Animals. Care
of a Horse. Care of a Cow. Poultry. Cautions for Winter. Smoky
Chimneys. House-Cleaning. Parties. Invitations. Comfort of Guests.
Flower-Baskets. Fire-Boards. Water-proof Shoes. Earthen Ware.
Cements, &c. &c.                                                     351

NOTE.--Cooking,                                                      354

GLOSSARY,                                                            355

INDEX,                                                               371


1. The Human Skeleton, showing the Connection of the Bones
of the System,                                                        70

2, 3, 4. The Cervical, Dorsal, and Lumbar, Vertebræ,                  72

5. Muscles of the Arm,                                                74

6. Vertical Section of the Skull and Spinal Column, side view,        77

7. View of the same as seen from behind,                              77

8. Ramifications of the Nerves,                                       79

9, 10, 11. Natural and Distorted Spines,                              81

12. Vascular System, or Blood-Vessels,                                82

13. The Two Sides of the Heart, separated,                            85

14. The Heart, with its two Sides united, as in Nature,               86

15. The Heart, with the great Blood-Vessels, on a larger scale,       87

16. Organs of Digestion and Respiration,                              88

17. Elevation of a Cottage of Fine Proportions,                      262

18. Ground-plan of the same,                                         262

19. Arrangement of one Side of a Room                                263

20. Fireplace and Mantelpiece,                                       265

21. Elevation of a Cottage on a different Plan from the former,      265

22. Ground-plan of the same,                                         266

23, 24. Ground-plan and Second Story of a two-story Cottage,         267

25. Front Elevation of the latter Cottage,                           268

26. Front Elevation, on a different Plan,                            268

27, 28. Plans of First and Second Stories of the latter Elevation,   269

29, 30. Plans of First and Second Stories of a larger House,         270

31. Front Elevation of a very convenient Cottage,                    271

32. Ground-plan of the same,                                         272

33. Cottage of Daniel Wadsworth, Esq., near Hartford, Conn.,         274

34. Accommodations for securing Water with the least Labor,          275

35. Back-door Accommodations,                                        276

36. Latticed Portico,                                                277

37. Sliding Closet, or Dumb Waiter,                                  278

38. Cheap Couch,                                                     312

39. Plan of a Flower-Bed,                                            334

40. Budding,                                                         343

41. Grafting,                                                        344

42. Stock-Grafting,                                                  345




There are some reasons, why American women should feel an interest in
the support of the democratic institutions of their Country, which it is
important that they should consider. The great maxim, which is the basis
of all our civil and political institutions, is, that "all men are
created equal," and that they are equally entitled to "life, liberty,
and the pursuit of happiness."

But it can readily be seen, that this is only another mode of expressing
the fundamental principle which the Great Ruler of the Universe has
established, as the law of His eternal government. "Thou shalt love thy
neighbor as thyself;" and "Whatsoever ye would that men should do to
you, do ye even so to them," are the Scripture forms, by which the
Supreme Lawgiver requires that each individual of our race shall regard
the happiness of others, as of the same value as his own; and which
forbid any institution, in private or civil life, which secures
advantages to one class, by sacrificing the interests of another.

The principles of democracy, then, are identical with the principles of

But, in order that each individual may pursue and secure the highest
degree of happiness within his reach, unimpeded by the selfish interests
of others, a system of laws must be established, which sustain certain
relations and dependencies in social and civil life. What these
relations and their attending obligations shall be, are to be
determined, not with reference to the wishes and interests of a few, but
solely with reference to the general good of all; so that each
individual shall have his own interest, as well as the public benefit,
secured by them.

For this purpose, it is needful that certain relations be sustained,
which involve the duties of subordination. There must be the magistrate
and the subject, one of whom is the superior, and the other the
inferior. There must be the relations of husband and wife, parent and
child, teacher and pupil, employer and employed, each involving the
relative duties of subordination. The superior, in certain particulars,
is to direct, and the inferior is to yield obedience. Society could
never go forward, harmoniously, nor could any craft or profession be
successfully pursued, unless these superior and subordinate relations be
instituted and sustained.

But who shall take the higher, and who the subordinate, stations in
social and civil life? This matter, in the case of parents and children,
is decided by the Creator. He has given children to the control of
parents, as their superiors, and to them they remain subordinate, to a
certain age, or so long as they are members of their household. And
parents can delegate such a portion of their authority to teachers and
employers, as the interests of their children require.

In most other cases, in a truly democratic state, each individual is
allowed to choose for himself, who shall take the position of his
superior. No woman is forced to obey any husband but the one she chooses
for herself; nor is she obliged to take a husband, if she prefers to
remain single. So every domestic, and every artisan or laborer, after
passing from parental control, can choose the employer to whom he is to
accord obedience, or, if he prefers to relinquish certain advantages, he
can remain without taking a subordinate place to any employer.

Each subject, also, has equal power with every other, to decide who
shall be his superior as a ruler. The weakest, the poorest, the most
illiterate, has the same opportunity to determine this question, as the
richest, the most learned, and the most exalted.

And the various privileges that wealth secures, are equally open to all
classes. Every man may aim at riches, unimpeded by any law or
institution which secures peculiar privileges to a favored class, at the
expense of another. Every law, and every institution, is tested by
examining whether it secures equal advantages to all; and, if the people
become convinced that any regulation sacrifices the good of the majority
to the interests of the smaller number, they have power to abolish it.

The institutions of monarchical and aristocratic nations are based on
precisely opposite principles. They secure, to certain small and favored
classes, advantages, which can be maintained, only by sacrificing the
interests of the great mass of the people. Thus, the throne and
aristocracy of England are supported by laws and customs, which burden
the lower classes with taxes, so enormous, as to deprive them of all the
luxuries, and of most of the comforts, of life. Poor dwellings, scanty
food, unhealthy employments, excessive labor, and entire destitution of
the means and time for education, are appointed for the lower classes,
that a few may live in palaces, and riot in every indulgence.

The tendencies of democratic institutions, in reference to the rights
and interests of the female sex, have been fully developed in the United
States; and it is in this aspect, that the subject is one of peculiar
interest to American women. In this Country, it is established, both by
opinion and by practice, that woman has an equal interest in all social
and civil concerns; and that no domestic, civil, or political,
institution, is right, which sacrifices her interest to promote that of
the other sex. But in order to secure her the more firmly in all these
privileges, it is decided, that, in the domestic relation, she take a
subordinate station, and that, in civil and political concerns, her
interests be intrusted to the other sex, without her taking any part in
voting, or in making and administering laws. The result of this order of
things has been fairly tested, and is thus portrayed by M. De
Tocqueville, a writer, who, for intelligence, fidelity, and ability,
ranks second to none.

"There are people in Europe, who, confounding together the different
characteristics of the sexes, would make of man and woman, beings not
only equal, but alike. They would give to both the same functions,
impose on both the same duties, and grant to both the same rights. They
would mix them in all things,--their business, their occupations, their
pleasures. It may readily be conceived, that, by _thus_ attempting to
make one sex equal to the other, both are degraded; and, from so
preposterous a medley of the works of Nature, nothing could ever result,
but weak men and disorderly women.

"It is not thus that the Americans understand the species of democratic
equality, which may be established between the sexes. They admit, that,
as Nature has appointed such wide differences between the physical and
moral constitutions of man and woman, her manifest design was, to give a
distinct employment to their various faculties; and they hold, that
improvement does not consist in making beings so dissimilar do pretty
nearly the same things, but in getting each of them to fulfil their
respective tasks, in the best possible manner. The Americans have
applied to the sexes the great principle of political economy, which
governs the manufactories of our age, by carefully dividing the duties
of man from those of woman, in order that the great work of society may
be the better carried on.

"In no country has such constant care been taken, as in America, to
trace two clearly distinct lines of action for the two sexes, and to
make them keep pace one with the other, but in two pathways which are
always different. American women never manage the outward concerns of
the family, or conduct a business, or take a part in political life; nor
are they, on the other hand, ever compelled to perform the rough labor
of the fields, or to make any of those laborious exertions, which
demand the exertion of physical strength. No families are so poor, as to
form an exception to this rule.

"If, on the one hand, an American woman cannot escape from the quiet
circle of domestic employments, on the other hand, she is never forced
to go beyond it. Hence it is, that the women of America, who often
exhibit a masculine strength of understanding, and a manly energy,
generally preserve great delicacy of personal appearance, and always
retain the manners of women, although they sometimes show that they have
the hearts and minds of men.

"Nor have the Americans ever supposed, that one consequence of
democratic principles, is, the subversion of marital power, or the
confusion of the natural authorities in families. They hold, that every
association must have a head, in order to accomplish its object; and
that the natural head of the conjugal association is man. They do not,
therefore, deny him the right of directing his partner; and they
maintain, that, in the smaller association of husband and wife, as well
as in the great social community, the object of democracy is, to
regulate and legalize the powers which are necessary, not to subvert all

"This opinion is not peculiar to one sex, and contested by the other. I
never observed, that the women of America considered conjugal authority
as a fortunate usurpation of their rights, nor that they thought
themselves degraded by submitting to it. It appears to me, on the
contrary, that they attach a sort of pride to the voluntary surrender of
their own will, and make it their boast to bend themselves to the yoke,
not to shake it off. Such, at least, is the feeling expressed by the
most virtuous of their sex; the others are silent; and in the United
States it is not the practice for a guilty wife to clamor for the rights
of woman, while she is trampling on her holiest duties."

"Although the travellers, who have visited North America, differ on a
great number of points, they agree in remarking, that morals are far
more strict, there, than elsewhere.[A] It is evident that, on this
point, the Americans are very superior to their progenitors, the
English." "In England, as in all other Countries of Europe, public
malice is constantly attacking the frailties of women. Philosophers and
statesmen are heard to deplore, that morals are not sufficiently strict;
and the literary productions of the Country constantly lead one to
suppose so. In America, all books, novels not excepted, suppose women to
be chaste; and no one thinks of relating affairs of gallantry."

"It has often been remarked, that, in Europe, a certain degree of
contempt lurks, even in the flattery which men lavish upon women.
Although a European frequently affects to be the slave of woman, it may
be seen, that he never sincerely thinks her his equal. In the United
States, men seldom compliment women, but they daily show how much they
esteem them. They constantly display an entire confidence in the
understanding of a wife, and a profound respect for her freedom."

They have decided that her mind is just as fitted as that of a man to
discover the plain truth, and her heart as firm to embrace it, and they
have never sought to place her virtue, any more than his, under the
shelter of prejudice, ignorance, and fear.

"It would seem, that in Europe, where man so easily submits to the
despotic sway of woman, they are nevertheless curtailed of some of the
greatest qualities of the human species, and considered as seductive,
but imperfect beings, and (what may well provoke astonishment) women
ultimately look upon themselves in the same light, and almost consider
it as a privilege that they are entitled to show themselves futile,
feeble, and timid. The women of America claim no such privileges."

"It is true, that the Americans rarely lavish upon women those eager
attentions which are commonly paid them in Europe. But their conduct to
women always implies, that they suppose them to be virtuous and refined;
and such is the respect entertained for the moral freedom of the sex,
that, in the presence of a woman, the most guarded language is used,
lest her ear should be offended by an expression. In America, a young
unmarried woman may, alone, and without fear, undertake a long journey."

"Thus the Americans do not think that man and woman have either the
duty, or the right, to perform the same offices, but they show an equal
regard for both their respective parts; and, though their lot is
different, they consider both of them, as beings of equal value. They do
not give to the courage of woman the same form, or the same direction,
as to that of man; but they never doubt her courage: and if they hold
that man and his partner ought not always to exercise their intellect
and understanding in the same manner, they at least believe the
understanding of the one to be as sound as that of the other, and her
intellect to be as clear. Thus, then, while they have allowed the social
inferiority of woman to subsist, they have done all they could to raise
her, morally and intellectually, to the level of man; and, in this
respect, they appear to me to have excellently understood the true
principle of democratic improvement.

"As for myself, I do not hesitate to avow, that, although the women of
the United States are confined within the narrow circle of domestic
life, and their situation is, in some respects, one of extreme
dependence, I have nowhere seen women occupying a loftier position; and
if I were asked, now I am drawing to the close of this work, in which I
have spoken of so many important things done by the Americans, to what
the singular prosperity and growing strength of that people ought mainly
to be attributed, I should reply,--_to the superiority of their women_."

This testimony of a foreigner, who has had abundant opportunities of
making a comparison, is sanctioned by the assent of all candid and
intelligent men, who have enjoyed similar opportunities.

It appears, then, that it is in America, alone, that women are raised to
an equality with the other sex; and that, both in theory and practice,
their interests are regarded as of equal value. They are made
subordinate in station, only where a regard to their best interests
demands it, while, as if in compensation for this, by custom and
courtesy, they are always treated as superiors. Universally, in this
Country, through every class of society, precedence is given to woman,
in all the comforts, conveniences, and courtesies, of life.

In civil and political affairs, American women take no interest or
concern, except so far as they sympathize with their family and personal
friends; but in all cases, in which they do feel a concern, their
opinions and feelings have a consideration, equal, or even superior, to
that of the other sex.

In matters pertaining to the education of their children, in the
selection and support of a clergyman, in all benevolent enterprises, and
in all questions relating to morals or manners, they have a superior
influence. In such concerns, it would be impossible to carry a point,
contrary to their judgement and feelings; while an enterprise, sustained
by them, will seldom fail of success.

If those who are bewailing themselves over the fancied wrongs and
injuries of women in this Nation, could only see things as they are,
they would know, that, whatever remnants of a barbarous or aristocratic
age may remain in our civil institutions, in reference to the interests
of women, it is only because they are ignorant of them, or do not use
their influence to have them rectified; for it is very certain that
there is nothing reasonable, which American women would unite in asking,
that would not readily be bestowed.

The preceding remarks, then, illustrate the position, that the
democratic institutions of this Country are in reality no other than
the principles of Christianity carried into operation, and that they
tend to place woman in her true position in society, as having equal
rights with the other sex; and that, in fact, they have secured to
American women a lofty and fortunate position, which, as yet, has been
attained by the women of no other nation.

There is another topic, presented in the work of the above author, which
demands the profound attention of American women.

The following is taken from that part of the Introduction to the work,
illustrating the position, that, for ages, there has been a constant
progress, in all civilized nations, towards the democratic equality
attained in this Country.

"The various occurrences of national existence have every where turned
to the advantage of democracy; all men have aided it by their exertions;
those who have intentionally labored in its cause, and those who have
served it unwittingly; those who have fought for it, and those who have
declared themselves its opponents, have all been driven along in the
same track, have all labored to one end;" "all have been blind
instruments in the hands of God."

"The gradual developement of the equality of conditions, is, therefore,
a Providential fact; and it possesses all the characteristics of a
Divine decree: it is universal, it is durable, it constantly eludes all
human interference, and all events, as well as all men, contribute to
its progress."

"The whole book, which is here offered to the public, has been written
under the impression of a kind of religious dread, produced in the
author's mind, by the contemplation of so irresistible a revolution,
which has advanced for centuries, in spite of such amazing obstacles,
and which is still proceeding in the midst of the ruins it has made.

"It is not necessary that God Himself should speak, in order to
disclose to us the unquestionable signs of His will. We can discern them
in the habitual course of Nature, and in the invariable tendency of

"If the men of our time were led, by attentive observation, and by
sincere reflection, to acknowledge that the gradual and progressive
developement of social equality is at once the past and future of their
history, this solitary truth would confer the sacred character of a
Divine decree upon the change. To attempt to check democracy, would be,
in that case, to resist the will of God; and the nations would then be
constrained to make the best of the social lot awarded to them by

"It is not, then, merely to satisfy a legitimate curiosity, that I have
examined America; my wish has been to find instruction by which we may
ourselves profit." "I have not even affected to discuss whether the
social revolution, which I believe to be irresistible, is advantageous
or prejudicial to mankind. I have acknowledged this revolution, as a
fact already accomplished, or on the eve of its accomplishment; and I
have selected the nation, from among those which have undergone it, in
which its developement has been the most peaceful and the most complete,
in order to discern its natural consequences, and, if it be possible, to
distinguish the means by which it may be rendered profitable. I confess,
that in America I saw more than America; I sought the image of democracy
itself, with its inclinations, its character, its prejudices, and its
passions, in order to learn what we have to fear, or to hope, from its

It thus appears, that the sublime and elevating anticipations which have
filled the mind and heart of the religious world, have become so far
developed, that philosophers and statesmen are perceiving the signs, and
are predicting the approach, of the same grand consummation. There is a
day advancing, "by seers predicted, and by poets sung," when the curse
of selfishness shall be removed; when "scenes surpassing fable, and yet
true," shall be realized; when all nations shall rejoice and be made
blessed, under those benevolent influences, which the Messiah came to
establish on earth.

And this is the Country, which the Disposer of events designs shall go
forth as the cynosure of nations, to guide them to the light and
blessedness of that day. To us is committed the grand, the responsible
privilege, of exhibiting to the world, the beneficent influences of
Christianity, when carried into every social, civil, and political
institution; and, though we have, as yet, made such imperfect advances,
already the light is streaming into the dark prison-house of despotic
lands, while startled kings and sages, philosophers and statesmen, are
watching us with that interest, which a career so illustrious, and so
involving their own destiny, is calculated to excite. They are studying
our institutions, scrutinizing our experience, and watching for our
mistakes, that they may learn whether "a social revolution, so
irresistible, be advantageous or prejudicial to mankind."

There are persons, who regard these interesting truths merely as food
for national vanity; but every reflecting and Christian mind, must
consider it as an occasion for solemn and anxious reflection. Are we,
then, a spectacle to the world? Has the Eternal Lawgiver appointed us to
work out a problem, involving the destiny of the whole earth? Are such
momentous interests to be advanced or retarded, just in proportion as we
are faithful to our high trust? "What manner of persons, then, ought we
to be," in attempting to sustain so solemn, so glorious a

But the part to be enacted by American women, in this great moral
enterprise, is the point to which special attention should here be

The success of democratic institutions, as is conceded by all, depends
upon the intellectual and moral character of the mass of the people. If
they are intelligent and virtuous, democracy is a blessing; but if they
are ignorant and wicked, it is only a curse, and as much more dreadful
than any other form of civil government, as a thousand tyrants are more
to be dreaded than one. It is equally conceded, that the formation of
the moral and intellectual character of the young is committed mainly to
the female hand. The mother forms the character of the future man; the
sister bends the fibres that are hereafter to be the forest tree; the
wife sways the heart, whose energies may turn for good or for evil the
destinies of a nation. Let the women of a country be made virtuous and
intelligent, and the men will certainly be the same. The proper
education of a man decides the welfare of an individual; but educate a
woman, and the interests of a whole family are secured.

If this be so, as none will deny, then to American women, more than to
any others on earth, is committed the exalted privilege of extending
over the world those blessed influences, which are to renovate degraded
man, and "clothe all climes with beauty."

No American woman, then, has any occasion for feeling that hers is an
humble or insignificant lot. The value of what an individual
accomplishes, is to be estimated by the importance of the enterprise
achieved, and not by the particular position of the laborer. The drops
of heaven which freshen the earth, are each of equal value, whether they
fall in the lowland meadow, or the princely parterre. The builders of a
temple are of equal importance, whether they labor on the foundations,
or toil upon the dome.

Thus, also, with those labors which are to be made effectual in the
regeneration of the Earth. And it is by forming a habit of regarding the
apparently insignificant efforts of each isolated laborer, in a
comprehensive manner, as indispensable portions of a grand result, that
the minds of all, however humble their sphere of service, can be
invigorated and cheered. The woman, who is rearing a family of
children; the woman, who labors in the schoolroom; the woman, who, in
her retired chamber, earns, with her needle, the mite, which contributes
to the intellectual and moral elevation of her Country; even the humble
domestic, whose example and influence may be moulding and forming young
minds, while her faithful services sustain a prosperous domestic
state;--each and all may be animated by the consciousness, that they are
agents in accomplishing the greatest work that ever was committed to
human responsibility. It is the building of a glorious temple, whose
base shall be coextensive with the bounds of the earth, whose summit
shall pierce the skies, whose splendor shall beam on all lands; and
those who hew the lowliest stone, as much as those who carve the highest
capital, will be equally honored, when its top-stone shall be laid, with
new rejoicings of the morning stars, and shoutings of the sons of God.


[A] Miss Martineau is a singular exception to this remark. After
receiving unexampled hospitalities and kindnesses, she gives the
following picture of her entertainers. Having in other places spoken of
the American woman as having "her intellect confined," and "her morals
crushed," and as deficient in education, because she has "none of the
objects in life for which an enlarged education is considered
requisite," she says,--"It is assumed, in America, particularly in New
England, that the morals of society there are peculiarly pure. I am
grieved to doubt the fact; but I do doubt it." "The Auld-Robin-Gray
story is a frequently-enacted tragedy here; and one of the worst
symptoms that struck me, was, that there was usually a demand upon my
sympathy in such cases."--"The unavoidable consequence of such a mode of
marrying, is, that the sanctity of marriage is impaired, and that vice
succeeds. There are sad tales in country villages, here and there, that
attest this; and yet more in towns, in a rank of society where such
things are seldom or never heard of in England."--"I unavoidably knew of
more cases of lapse in highly respectable families in one State, than
ever came to my knowledge at home; and they were got over with a
disgrace far more temporary and superficial than they could have been
visited with in England."--"The vacuity of mind of many women, is, I
conclude, the cause of a vice, which it is painful to allude to, but
which cannot honestly be passed over.--It is no secret on the spot, that
the habit of intemperance is not infrequent among women of station and
education in the most enlightened parts of the Country. I witnessed some
instances, and heard of more. It does not seem to me to be regarded with
all the dismay which such a symptom ought to excite. To the stranger, a
novelty so horrible, a spectacle so fearful, suggests wide and deep
subjects of investigation."

It is not possible for language to give representations more false in
every item. In evidence of this, the writer would mention, that, within
the last few years, she has travelled almost the entire route taken by
Miss Martineau, except the lower tier of the Southern States; and,
though not meeting the same individuals, has mingled in the very same
circles. Moreover, she has _resided_ from several months to several
years in _eight_ of the different Northern and Western States, and spent
several weeks at a time in five other States. She has also had pupils
from every State in the Union, but two, and has visited extensively at
their houses. But in her whole life, and in all these different
positions, the writer has never, to her knowledge, seen even _one_
woman, of the classes with which she has associated, who had lapsed in
the manner indicated by Miss Martineau; nor does she believe that such a
woman could find admission in such circles any where in the Country. As
to intemperate women, _five_ cases are all of whom the writer has ever
heard, in such circles, and two of these many believed to be
unwarrantably suspected. After following in Miss Martineau's track, and
discovering all the falsehood, twaddle, gossip, old saws, and almanac
stories, which have been strung together in her books, no charitable
mode of accounting for the medley remains, but to suppose her the
pitiable dupe of that love of hoaxing so often found in our Country.

Again, Miss Martineau says, "We passed an unshaded meadow, where the
grass had caught fire, _every day_, at _eleven o'clock_, the preceding
Summer. This demonstrates the necessity of shade"! A woman, with so
little common sense, as to swallow such an absurdity for truth, and then
tack to it such an astute deduction, must be a tempting subject for the
abovementioned mischievous propensity.



In the preceding chapter, were presented those views, which are
calculated to inspire American women with a sense of their high
responsibilities to their Country, and to the world; and of the
excellence and grandeur of the object to which their energies may be

But it will be found to be the law of moral action, that whatever
involves great results and great benefits, is always attended with great
hazards and difficulties. And as it has been shown, that American women
have a loftier position, and a more elevated object of enterprise, than
the females of any other nation, so it will appear, that they have
greater trials and difficulties to overcome, than any other women are
called to encounter.

Properly to appreciate the nature of these trials, it must be borne in
mind, that the estimate of evils and privations depends, not so much on
their positive nature, as on the character and habits of the person who
meets them. A woman, educated in the savage state, finds it no trial to
be destitute of many conveniences, which a woman, even of the lowest
condition, in this Country, would deem indispensable to existence. So a
woman, educated with the tastes and habits of the best New England or
Virginia housekeepers, would encounter many deprivations and trials,
which would never occur to one reared in the log cabin of a new
settlement. So, also, a woman, who has been accustomed to carry forward
her arrangements with well-trained domestics, would meet a thousand
trials to her feelings and temper, by the substitution of ignorant
foreigners, or shiftless slaves, which would be of little account to one
who had never enjoyed any better service.

Now, the larger portion of American women are the descendants of English
progenitors, who, as a nation, are distinguished for systematic
housekeeping, and for a great love of order, cleanliness, and comfort.
And American women, to a greater or less extent, have inherited similar
tastes and habits. But the prosperity and democratic tendencies of this
Country produce results, materially affecting the comfort of
housekeepers, which the females of monarchical and aristocratic lands
are not called to meet. In such countries, all ranks and classes are
fixed in a given position, and each person is educated for a particular
sphere and style of living. And the dwellings, conveniences, and customs
of life, remain very nearly the same, from generation to generation.
This secures the preparation of all classes for their particular
station, and makes the lower orders more dependent, and more subservient
to employers.

But how different is the state of things in this Country. Every thing
is moving and changing. Persons in poverty, are rising to opulence, and
persons of wealth, are sinking to poverty. The children of common
laborers, by their talents and enterprise, are becoming nobles in
intellect, or wealth, or office; while the children of the wealthy,
enervated by indulgence, are sinking to humbler stations. The sons of
the wealthy are leaving the rich mansions of their fathers, to dwell in
the log cabins of the forest, where very soon they bear away the
daughters of ease and refinement, to share the privations of a new
settlement. Meantime, even in the more stationary portions of the
community, there is a mingling of all grades of wealth, intellect, and
education. There are no distinct classes, as in aristocratic lands,
whose bounds are protected by distinct and impassable lines, but all are
thrown into promiscuous masses. Thus, persons of humble means are
brought into contact with those of vast wealth, while all intervening
grades are placed side by side. Thus, too, there is a constant
comparison of conditions, among equals, and a constant temptation
presented to imitate the customs, and to strive for the enjoyments, of
those who possess larger means.

In addition to this, the flow of wealth, among all classes, is
constantly increasing the number of those who live in a style demanding
much hired service, while the number of those, who are compelled to go
to service, is constantly diminishing. Our manufactories, also, are
making increased demands for female labor, and offering larger
compensation. In consequence of these things, there is such a
disproportion between those who wish to hire, and those who are willing
to go to domestic service, that, in the non-slaveholding States, were it
not for the supply of poverty-stricken foreigners, there would not be a
domestic for each family who demands one. And this resort to foreigners,
poor as it is, scarcely meets the demand; while the disproportion must
every year increase, especially if our prosperity increases. For, just
in proportion as wealth rolls in upon us, the number of those, who will
give up their own independent homes to serve strangers, will be

The difficulties and sufferings, which have accrued to American women,
from this cause, are almost incalculable. There is nothing, which so
much demands system and regularity, as the affairs of a housekeeper,
made up, as they are, of ten thousand desultory and minute items; and
yet, this perpetually fluctuating state of society seems forever to bar
any such system and regularity. The anxieties, vexations, perplexities,
and even hard labor, which come upon American women, from this state of
domestic service, are endless; and many a woman has, in consequence,
been disheartened, discouraged, and ruined in health. The only wonder
is, that, amid so many real difficulties, American women are still able
to maintain such a character for energy, fortitude, and amiableness, as
is universally allowed to be their due.

But the second, and still greater difficulty, peculiar to American
women, is, a delicacy of constitution, which renders them early victims
to disease and decay.

The fact that the women of this Country are unusually subject to
disease, and that their beauty and youthfulness are of shorter
continuance than those of the women of other nations, is one which
always attracts the attention of foreigners; while medical men and
philanthropists are constantly giving fearful monitions as to the extent
and alarming increase of this evil. Investigations make it evident, that
a large proportion of young ladies, from the wealthier classes, have the
incipient stages of curvature of the spine, one of the most sure and
fruitful causes of future disease and decay. The writer has heard
medical men, who have made extensive inquiries, say, that a very large
proportion of the young women at boarding schools, are affected in this
way, while many other indications of disease and debility exist, in
cases where this particular evil cannot be detected.

In consequence of this enfeebled state of their constitutions, induced
by a neglect of their physical education, as soon as they are called to
the responsibilities and trials of domestic life, their constitution
fails, and their whole existence is rendered a burden. For no woman can
enjoy existence, when disease throws a dark cloud over the mind, and
incapacitates her for the proper discharge of every duty.

The writer, who for some ten years has had the charge of an institution,
consisting of young ladies from almost every State in the Union, since
relinquishing that charge, has travelled and visited extensively in most
of the non-slaveholding States. In these circuits, she has learned the
domestic history, not merely of her pupils, but of many other young
wives and mothers, whose sorrowful experience has come to her knowledge.
And the impression, produced by the dreadful extent of this evil, has at
times been almost overwhelming.

It would seem as if the primeval curse, which has written the doom of
pain and sorrow on one period of a young mother's life, in this Country
had been extended over all; so that the hour seldom arrives, when "she
forgetteth her sorrow for joy that a man is born into the world." Many a
mother will testify, with shuddering, that the most exquisite sufferings
she ever endured, were not those appointed by Nature, but those, which,
for week after week, have worn down health and spirits, when nourishing
her child. And medical men teach us, that this, in most cases, results
from a debility of constitution, consequent on the mismanagement of
early life. And so frequent and so mournful are these, and the other
distresses that result from the delicacy of the female constitution,
that the writer has repeatedly heard mothers say, that they had wept
tears of bitterness over their infant daughters, at the thought of the
sufferings which they were destined to undergo; while they cherished
the decided wish, that these daughters should never marry. At the same
time, many a reflecting young woman is looking to her future prospects,
with very different feelings and hopes from those which Providence

A perfectly healthy woman, especially a perfectly healthy mother, is so
unfrequent, in some of the wealthier classes, that those, who are so,
may be regarded as the exceptions, and not as the general rule. The
writer has heard some of her friends declare, that they would ride fifty
miles, to see a perfectly healthy and vigorous woman, out of the
laboring classes. This, although somewhat jocose, was not an entirely
unfair picture of the true state of female health in the wealthier

There are many causes operating, which serve to perpetuate and increase
this evil. It is a well-known fact, that mental excitement tends to
weaken the physical system, unless it is counterbalanced by a
corresponding increase of exercise and fresh air. Now, the people of
this Country are under the influence of high commercial, political, and
religious stimulus, altogether greater than was ever known by any other
nation; and in all this, women are made the sympathizing companions of
the other sex. At the same time, young girls, in pursuing an education,
have ten times greater an amount of intellectual taxation demanded, than
was ever before exacted. Let any daughter, educated in our best schools
at this day, compare the course of her study with that pursued in her
mother's early life, and it will be seen that this estimate of the
increase of mental taxation probably falls below the truth. Though, in
some countries, there are small classes of females, in the higher
circles, who pursue literature and science to a far greater extent than
in any corresponding circles in this Country, yet, in no nation in the
world are the advantages of a good intellectual education enjoyed, by so
large a proportion of the females. And this education has consisted far
less of accomplishments, and far more of those solid studies which
demand the exercise of the various powers of mind, than the education
of the women of other lands.

And when American women are called to the responsibilities of domestic
life, the degree in which their minds and feelings are taxed, is
altogether greater than it is in any other nation.

No women on earth have a higher sense of their moral and religious
responsibilities, or better understand, not only what is demanded of
them, as housekeepers, but all the claims that rest upon them as wives,
mothers, and members of a social community. An American woman, who is
the mistress of a family, feels her obligations, in reference to her
influence over her husband, and a still greater responsibility in
rearing and educating her children. She feels, too, the claims which the
moral interests of her domestics have on her watchful care. In social
life, she recognises the claims of hospitality, and the demands of
friendly visiting. Her responsibility, in reference to the institutions
of benevolence and religion, is deeply realized. The regular worship of
the Lord's day, and all the various religious meetings and benevolent
societies which place so much dependence on female influence and
example, she feels obligated to sustain. Add to these multiplied
responsibilities, the perplexities and evils which have been pointed
out, resulting from the fluctuating state of society, and the deficiency
of domestic service, and no one can deny that American women are exposed
to a far greater amount of intellectual and moral excitement, than those
of any other land. Of course, in order to escape the danger resulting
from this, a greater amount of exercise in the fresh air, and all those
methods which strengthen the constitution, are imperiously required.

But, instead of this, it will be found, that, owing to the climate and
customs of this Nation, there are no women who secure so little of this
healthful and protecting regimen, as ours. Walking and riding and
gardening, in the open air, are practised by the women of other lands,
to a far greater extent, than by American females. Most English women,
in the wealthier classes, are able to walk six and eight miles, without
oppressive fatigue; and when they visit this Country, always express
their surprise at the inactive habits of American ladies. In England,
regular exercise, in the open air, is very commonly required by the
mother, as a part of daily duty, and is sought by young women, as an
enjoyment. In consequence of a different physical training, English
women, in those circles which enjoy competency, present an appearance
which always strikes American gentlemen as a contrast to what they see
at home. An English mother, at thirty, or thirty-five, is in the full
bloom of perfected womanhood; as fresh and healthful as her daughters.
But where are the American mothers, who can reach this period unfaded
and unworn? In America, young ladies of the wealthier classes are sent
to school from early childhood; and neither parents nor teachers make it
a definite object to secure a proper amount of fresh air and exercise,
to counterbalance this intellectual taxation. As soon as their school
days are over, dressing, visiting, evening parties, and stimulating
amusements, take the place of study, while the most unhealthful modes of
dress add to the physical exposures. To make morning calls, or do a
little shopping, is all that can be termed their exercise in the fresh
air; and this, compared to what is needed, is absolutely nothing, and on
some accounts is worse than nothing.[B] In consequence of these, and
other evils, which will be pointed out more at large in the following
pages, the young women of America grow up with such a delicacy of
constitution, that probably eight out of ten become subjects of disease,
either before or as soon as they are called to the responsibilities of
domestic life.

But there is one peculiarity of situation, in regard to American women,
which makes this delicacy of constitution still more disastrous. It is
the liability to the exposures and hardships of a newly-settled country.

One more extract from De Tocqueville will give a view of this part of
the subject, which any one, familiar with Western life, will admire for
its verisimilitude.

"The same strength of purpose which the young wives of America display
in bending themselves, at once, and without repining, to the austere
duties of their new condition, is no less manifest in all the great
trials of their lives. In no country in the world, are private fortunes
more precarious, than in the United States. It is not uncommon for the
same man, in the course of his life, to rise and sink again through all
the grades which lead from opulence to poverty. American women support
these vicissitudes with a calm and unquenchable energy. It would seem
that their desires contract, as easily as they expand, with their
fortunes. The greater part of the adventurers, who migrate, every year,
to people the Western wilds, belong" "to the old Anglo-American race of
the Northern States. Many of these men, who rush so boldly onward in
pursuit of wealth, were already in the enjoyment of a competency in
their own part of the Country. They take their wives along with them,
and make them share the countless perils and privations, which always
attend the commencement of these expeditions. I have often met, even on
the verge of the wilderness, with young women, who, after having been
brought up amid all the comforts of the large towns of New England, had
passed, almost without any intermediate stage, from the wealthy abode of
their parents, to a comfortless hovel in a forest. Fever, solitude, and
a tedious life, had not broken the springs of their courage. Their
features were impaired and faded, but their looks were firm: they
appeared to be, at once, sad and resolute."

In another passage, he gives this picturesque sketch: "By the side of
the hearth, sits a woman, with a baby on her lap. She nods to us,
without disturbing herself. Like the pioneer, this woman is in the prime
of life; her appearance would seem superior to her condition: and her
apparel even betrays a lingering taste for dress. But her delicate limbs
appear shrunken; her features are drawn in; her eye is mild and
melancholy; her whole physiognomy bears marks of a degree of religious
resignation, a deep quiet of all passion, and some sort of natural and
tranquil firmness, ready to meet all the ills of life, without fearing
and without braving them. Her children cluster about her, full of
health, turbulence, and energy; they are true children of the
wilderness: their mother watches them, from time to time, with mingled
melancholy and joy. To look at their strength, and her languor, one
might imagine that the life she had given them had exhausted her own;
and still she regrets not what they have cost her. The house, inhabited
by these emigrants, has no internal partition or loft. In the one
chamber of which it consists, the whole family is gathered for the
night. The dwelling is itself a little world; an ark of civilization
amid an ocean of foliage. A hundred steps beyond it, the primeval forest
spreads its shades, and solitude resumes its sway."

Such scenes, and such women, the writer has met, and few persons realize
how many refined and lovely women are scattered over the broad prairies
and deep forests of the West; and none, but the Father above,
appreciates the extent of those sacrifices and sufferings, and the value
of that firm faith and religious hope, which live, in perennial bloom,
amid those vast solitudes. If the American women of the East merit the
palm, for their skill and success as accomplished housekeepers, still
more is due to the heroines of the West, who, with such unyielding
fortitude and cheerful endurance, attempt similar duties, amid so many
disadvantages and deprivations.

But, though American women have those elevated principles and feelings,
which enable them to meet such trials in so exemplary a manner, their
physical energies are not equal to the exertions demanded. Though the
mind may be bright and firm, the casket is shivered; though the spirit
may be willing, the flesh is weak. A woman of firm health, with the hope
and elasticity of youth, may be envied rather than pitied, as she shares
with her young husband the hopes and enterprises of pioneer life. But,
when the body fails, then the eye of hope grows dim, the heart sickens,
the courage dies; and, in solitude, weariness, and suffering, the
wanderer pines for the dear voices and the tender sympathies of a far
distant home. Then it is, that the darkest shade is presented, which
marks the peculiar trials and liabilities of American women, and which
exhibits still more forcibly the disastrous results of that delicacy of
constitution which has been pointed out. For, though all American women,
or even the greater part of them, are not called to encounter such
trials, yet no mother, who rears a family of daughters, can say, that
such a lot will not fall to one of her flock; nor can she know which
will escape. The reverses of fortune, and the chances of matrimony,
expose every woman in the Nation to such liabilities, for which she
needs to be prepared.


[B] So little idea have most ladies, in the wealthier classes, of what
is a proper amount of exercise, that, if they should succeed in walking
a mile or so, at a moderate pace, three or four times a week, they would
call it taking a great deal of exercise.



Having pointed out the peculiar responsibilities of American women, and
the peculiar embarrassments which they are called to encounter, the
following suggestions are offered, as remedies for such difficulties.

In the first place, the physical and domestic education of daughters
should occupy the principal attention of mothers, in childhood; and the
stimulation of the intellect should be very much reduced. As a general
rule, daughters should not be sent to school before they are six years
old; and, when they are sent, far more attention should be paid to their
physical developement, than is usually done. They should never be
confined, at any employment, more than an hour at a time; and this
confinement should be followed by sports in the open air. Such
accommodations should be secured, that, at all seasons, and in all
weathers, the teacher can every half hour send out a portion of her
school, for sports. And still more care should be given to preserve pure
air in the schoolroom. The close stoves, crowded condition, and
poisonous air, of most schoolrooms, act as constant drains on the health
and strength of young children.

In addition to this, much less time should be given to school, and much
more to domestic employments, especially in the wealthier classes. A
little girl may begin, at five or six years of age, to assist her
mother; and, if properly trained, by the time she is ten, she can render
essential aid. From this time, until she is fourteen or fifteen, it
should be the principal object of her education to secure a strong and
healthy constitution, and a thorough practical knowledge of all kinds of
domestic employments. During this period, though some attention ought to
be paid to intellectual culture, it ought to be made altogether
secondary in importance; and such a measure of study and intellectual
excitement, as is now demanded in our best female seminaries, ought
never to be allowed, until a young lady has passed the most critical
period of her youth, and has a vigorous and healthful constitution fully
established. The plan might be adopted, of having schools for young
girls kept only in the afternoon; that their mornings might be occupied
in domestic exercise, without interfering with school employments. Where
a proper supply of domestic exercise cannot be afforded, the cultivation
of flowers and fruits might be resorted to, as a delightful and
unfailing promotive of pleasure and health.

And it is to that class of mothers, who have the best means of securing
hired service, and who are the most tempted to allow their daughters to
grow up with inactive habits, that their Country and the world must
look for a reformation, in this respect. Whatever ladies in the
wealthier classes decide shall be fashionable, will be followed by all
the rest; but, while they persist in the aristocratic habits, now so
common, and bring up their daughters to feel as if labor was degrading
and unbecoming, the evils pointed out will never find a remedy. It is,
therefore, the peculiar duty of ladies, who have wealth, to set a proper
example, in this particular, and make it their first aim to secure a
strong and healthful constitution for their daughters, by active
domestic employments. All the sweeping, dusting, care of furniture and
beds, the clear starching, and the nice cooking, should be done by the
daughters of a family, and not by hired servants. It may cost the mother
more care, and she may find it needful to hire a person for the express
purpose of instructing and superintending her daughters, in these
employments; but it should be regarded as indispensable to be secured,
either by the mother's agency, or by a substitute.

It is in this point of view, that the dearth of good domestics in this
Country may, in its results, prove a substantial blessing. If all
housekeepers, who have the means, could secure good servants, there
would be little hope that so important a revolution, in the domestic
customs of the wealthy classes, could be effected. And so great is the
natural indolence of mankind, that the amount of exercise, needful for
health, will never be secured by those who are led to it through no
necessity, but merely from rational considerations. Yet the pressure of
domestic troubles, from the want of good domestics, has already
determined many a mother, in the wealthy classes, to train her daughters
to aid her in domestic service; and thus necessity is compelling mothers
to do what abstract principles of expediency could never secure.

A second method of promoting the same object, is, to raise the science
and practice of Domestic Economy to its appropriate place, as a regular
study in female seminaries. The succeeding chapter will present the
reasons for this, more at large. But it is to the mothers of our
Country, that the community must look for this change. It cannot be
expected, that teachers, who have their attention chiefly absorbed by
the intellectual and moral interests of their pupils, should properly
realize the importance of this department of education. But if mothers
generally become convinced of this, their judgement and wishes will meet
the respectful consideration they deserve, and the object will be

The third method of securing a remedy for the evils pointed out, is, the
endowment of female institutions, under the care of suitable trustees,
who shall secure a proper course of education. The importance of this
measure cannot be realized by those, who have not turned their attention
to this subject; and for such, the following considerations are

The endowment of colleges, and of law, medical, and divinity, schools,
for the other sex, is designed to secure a thorough and proper
education, for those who have the most important duties of society to
perform. The men who are to expound the laws, the men who have the care
of the public health, and the men who are to communicate religious
instruction, should have well-disciplined and well-informed minds; and
it is mainly for this object that collegiate and professional
institutions are established. Liberal and wealthy individuals contribute
funds, and the legislatures of the States also lend assistance, so that
every State in this Nation has from one to twenty such endowed
institutions, supplied with buildings, apparatus, a library, and a
faculty of learned men to carry forward a superior course of
instruction. And the use of all these advantages is secured, in many
cases, at an expense, no greater than is required to send a boy to a
common school and pay his board there. No private school could offer
these advantages, without charging such a sum, as would forbid all but
the rich from securing its benefits. By furnishing such superior
advantages, on low terms, multitudes are properly educated, who would
otherwise remain in ignorance; and thus the professions are supplied,
by men properly qualified for them.

Were there no such institutions, and no regular and appropriate course
of study demanded for admission to the bar, the pulpit, and to medical
practice, the education of most professional men would be desultory,
imperfect, and deficient. Parents and children would regulate the course
of study according to their own crude notions; and, instead of having
institutions which agree in carrying on a similar course of study, each
school would have its own peculiar system, and compete and conflict with
every other. Meantime, the public would have no means of deciding which
was best, nor any opportunity for learning when a professional man was
properly qualified for his duties. But as it is, the diploma of a
college, and the license of an appointed body of judges, must both be
secured, before a young man feels that he has entered the most promising
path to success in his profession.

Our Country, then, is most abundantly supplied with endowed
institutions, which secure a liberal education, on such low terms as
make them accessible to all classes, and in which the interests of
education are watched over, sustained, and made permanent, by an
appropriate board of trustees.

But are not the most responsible of all duties committed to the charge
of woman? Is it not her profession to take care of mind, body, and soul?
and that, too, at the most critical of all periods of existence? And is
it not as much a matter of public concern, that she should be properly
qualified for her duties, as that ministers, lawyers, and physicians,
should be prepared for theirs? And is it not as important, to endow
institutions which shall make a superior education accessible to all
classes,--for females, as for the other sex? And is it not equally
important, that institutions for females be under the supervision of
intelligent and responsible trustees, whose duty it shall be to secure a
uniform and appropriate education for one sex as much as for the other?
It would seem as if every mind must accord an affirmative reply, as soon
as the matter is fairly considered.

As the education of females is now conducted, any man or woman who
pleases, can establish a female seminary, and secure recommendations
which will attract pupils. But whose business is it to see that these
young females are not huddled into crowded rooms? or that they do not
sleep in ill-ventilated chambers? or that they have healthful food? or
that they have the requisite amount of fresh air and exercise? or that
they pursue an appropriate and systematic course of study? or that their
manners, principles, and morals, are properly regulated? Parents either
have not the means, or else are not qualified to judge; or, if they are
furnished with means and capacity, they are often restricted to a choice
of the best school within reach, even when it is known to be exceedingly

If the writer were to disclose all that can truly be told of
boarding-school life, and its influence on health, manners, disposition,
intellect, and morals, the disclosure would both astonish and shock
every rational mind. And yet she believes that such institutions are far
better managed in this Country, than in any other; and that the number
of those, which are subject to imputations in these respects, is much
less than could reasonably be expected. But it is most surely the case,
that much remains to be done, in order to supply such institutions as
are needed for the proper education of American women.

In attempting a sketch of the kind of institutions which are demanded,
it is very fortunate that there is no necessity for presenting a theory,
which may, or may not, be approved by experience. It is the greatest
honor of one of our newest Western States, that it can boast of such an
Institution, endowed, too, wholly by the munificence of a single
individual. A slight sketch of this Institution, which the writer has
examined in all its details, will give an idea of what can be done, by
showing what has actually been accomplished.

This Institution[C] is under the supervision of a Board of Trustees, who
hold the property in trust for the object to which it is devoted, and
who have the power to fill their own vacancies. It is furnished with a
noble and tasteful building, of stone, so liberal in dimensions and
arrangement, that it can accommodate ninety pupils and teachers, giving
one room to every two pupils, and all being so arranged, as to admit of
thorough ventilation. This building is surrounded by extensive grounds,
enclosed with handsome fences, where remains of the primeval forest
still offer refreshing shade for juvenile sports.

To secure adequate exercise for the pupils, two methods are adopted. By
the first, each young lady is required to spend a certain portion of
time in domestic employments, either in sweeping, dusting, setting and
clearing tables, washing and ironing, or other household concerns.

Let not the aristocratic mother and daughter express their dislike of
such an arrangement, till they can learn how well it succeeds. Let them
walk, as the writer has done, through the large airy halls, kept clean
and in order by their fair occupants, to the washing and ironing-rooms.
There they will see a long hall, conveniently fitted up with some thirty
neatly-painted tubs, with a clean floor, and water conducted so as to
save both labor and slopping. Let them see some thirty or forty merry
girls, superintended by a motherly lady, chatting and singing, washing
and starching, while every convenience is at hand, and every thing
around is clean and comfortable. Two hours, thus employed, enable each
young lady to wash the articles she used during the previous week, which
is all that is demanded, while thus they are all practically initiated
into the arts and mysteries of the wash-tub. The Superintendent remarked
to the writer, that, after a few weeks of probation, most of her young
washers succeeded quite as well as those whom she could hire, and who
made it their business. Adjacent to the washing-room, is the ironing
establishment; where another class are arranged, on the ironing-day,
around long, extended tables, with heating-furnaces, clothes-frames, and
all needful appliances.

By a systematic arrangement of school and domestic duties, a moderate
portion of time, usually not exceeding two hours a day, from each of the
pupils, accomplished all the domestic labor of a family of ninety,
except the cooking, which was done by two hired domestics. This part of
domestic labor it was deemed inexpedient to incorporate as a portion of
the business of the pupils, inasmuch as it could not be accommodated to
the arrangements of the school, and was in other respects objectionable.

Is it asked, how can young ladies paint, play the piano, and study, when
their hands and dresses must be unfitted by such drudgery? The woman who
asks this question, has yet to learn that a pure and delicate skin is
better secured by healthful exercise, than by any other method; and that
a young lady, who will spend two hours a day at the wash-tub, or with a
broom, is far more likely to have rosy cheeks, a finely-moulded form,
and a delicate skin, than one who lolls all day in her parlor or
chamber, or only leaves it, girt in tight dresses, to make fashionable
calls. It is true, that long-protracted daily labor hardens the hand,
and unfits it for delicate employments; but the amount of labor needful
for health produces no such effect. As to dress, and appearance, if neat
and convenient accommodations are furnished, there is no occasion for
the exposures which demand shabby dresses. A dark calico, genteelly
made, with an oiled-silk apron, and wide cuffs of the same material,
secures both good looks and good service. This plan of domestic
employments for the pupils in this Institution, not only secures regular
healthful exercise, but also aids to reduce the expenses of education,
so that, with the help of the endowments, it is brought within the reach
of many, who otherwise could never gain such advantages.

In addition to this, a system of Calisthenic[D] exercises is introduced,
which secures all the advantages which dancing is supposed to effect,
and which is free from the dangerous tendencies of that fascinating and
fashionable amusement. This system is so combined with music, and
constantly varying evolutions, as to serve as an amusement, and also as
a mode of curing distortions, particularly all tendencies to curvature
of the spine; while, at the same time, it tends to promote grace of
movement, and easy manners.

Another advantage of this Institution, is, an elevated and invigorating
course of mental discipline. Many persons seem to suppose, that the
chief object of an intellectual education is the acquisition of
knowledge. But it will be found, that this is only a secondary object.
The formation of habits of investigation, of correct reasoning, of
persevering attention, of regular system, of accurate analysis, and of
vigorous mental action, is the primary object to be sought in preparing
American women for their arduous duties; duties which will demand not
only quickness of perception, but steadiness of purpose, regularity of
system, and perseverance in action.

It is for such purposes, that the discipline of the Mathematics is so
important an element in female education; and it is in this aspect,
that the mere acquisition of facts, and the attainment of
accomplishments, should be made of altogether secondary account.

In the Institution here described, a systematic course of study is
adopted, as in our colleges; designed to occupy three years. The
following slight outline of the course, will exhibit the liberal plan
adopted in this respect.

In Mathematics, the whole of Arithmetic contained in the larger works
used in schools, the whole of Euclid, and such portions from Day's
Mathematics as are requisite to enable the pupils to demonstrate the
various problems in Olmsted's larger work on Natural Philosophy. In
Language, besides English Grammar, a short course in Latin is required,
sufficient to secure an understanding of the philosophy of the language,
and that kind of mental discipline which the exercise of translating
affords. In Philosophy, Chemistry, Astronomy, Botany, Geology and
Mineralogy, Intellectual and Moral Philosophy, Political Economy, and
the Evidences of Christianity, the same textbooks are used as are
required at our best colleges. In Geography, the most thorough course is
adopted; and in History, a more complete knowledge is secured, by means
of charts and textbooks, than most of our colleges offer. To these
branches, are added Griscom's Physiology,[E] Bigelow's Technology, and
Jahn's Archæology, together with a course of instruction in polite
literature, for which Chambers's English Literature is employed as the
text-book, each recitation being attended with selections and
criticisms, from teacher or pupils, on the various authors brought into
notice. Vocal Music, on the plan of the Boston Academy, is a part of the
daily instructions. Linear drawing, and pencilling, are designed also
to be a part of the course. Instrumental Music is taught, but not as a
part of the regular course of study.

To secure the proper instruction in all these branches, the division of
labor, adopted in colleges, is pursued. Each teacher has distinct
branches as her department, for which she is responsible, and in which
she is independent. One teacher performs the duties of a _governess_, in
maintaining rules, and attending to the habits and manners of the
pupils. By this method, the teachers have sufficient time, both to
prepare themselves, and to impart instruction and illustration in the
class-room. In this Institution it is made a direct object of effort _to
cure defects_ of _character and habits_. At the frequent meetings of the
Principal and teachers, the peculiarities of each pupil are made the
subjects of inquiry; and methods are devised for remedying defects
through the personal influence of the several teachers. This, when thus
made a direct object of combined effort, often secures results most
gratifying and encouraging.

One peculiarity of this Institution demands consideration. By the method
adopted here, the exclusive business of educating their own sex is, as
it ever ought to be, confined to females. The Principal of the
Institution, indeed, is a gentleman; but, while he takes the position of
a father of the family, and responsible head of the whole concern, the
entire charge of instruction, and most of the responsibilities in regard
to health, morals, and manners, rest upon the female teachers, in their
several departments. The Principal is the chaplain and religious
teacher; and is a member of the board of instructors, so far as to have
a right to advise, and an equal vote, in every question pertaining to
the concerns of the School; and thus he acts as a sort of regulator and
mainspring in all the various departments. But no one person in the
Institution is loaded with the excessive responsibilities, which rest
upon one, where a large institution of this kind has a Principal, who
employs and directs all the subordinate assistants. The writer has
never before seen the principle of the division of labor and
responsibility so perfectly carried out in any female institution; and
she believes that experience will prove that this is the true model for
combining, in appropriate proportions, the agency of both sexes in
carrying forward such an institution. There are cases where females are
well qualified, and feel willing to take the place occupied by the
Principal; but such cases are rare.

One thing more should be noticed, to the credit of the rising State
where this Institution is located. A female association has been formed,
embracing a large portion of the ladies of standing and wealth, the
design of which, is, to educate, gratuitously, at this, and other
similar, institutions, such females as are anxious to obtain a good
education, and are destitute of the means. If this enterprise is
continued, with the same energy and perseverance as has been manifested
during the last few years, that State will take the lead of her sister
States in well-educated women; and if the views in the preceding pages
are correct, this will give her precedence in every intellectual and
moral advantage.

Many, who are not aware of the great economy secured by a proper
division of labor, will not understand how so extensive a course can be
properly completed in three years. But in this Institution, none are
received under fourteen; and a certain amount of previous acquisition is
required, in order to admission, as is done in our colleges. This
secures a diminution of classes, so that but few studies are pursued at
one time; while the number of well-qualified teachers is so adequate,
that full time is afforded for all needful instruction and illustration.
Where teachers have so many classes, that they merely have time to find
out what the pupils learn from books, without any aid from their
teachers, the acquisitions of the pupils are vague and imperfect, and
soon pass away; so that an immense amount of expense, time, and labor,
is spent in acquiring or recalling what is lost about as fast as it is

Parents are little aware of the immense waste incurred by the present
mode of conducting female education. In the wealthy classes, young girls
are sent to school, as a matter of course, year after year, confined,
for six hours a day, to the schoolhouse, and required to add some time
out of school to learning their lessons. Thus, during the most critical
period of life, they are for a long time immured in a room, filled with
an atmosphere vitiated by many breaths, and are constantly kept under
some sort of responsibility in regard to mental effort. Their studies
are pursued at random, often changed with changing schools, while book
after book (heavily taxing the parent's purse) is conned awhile, and
then supplanted by others. Teachers have usually so many pupils, and
such a variety of branches to teach, that little time can be afforded to
each pupil; while scholars, at this thoughtless period of life, feeling
sure of going to school as long as they please, manifest little interest
in their pursuits.

The writer believes that the actual amount of education, permanently
secured by most young ladies from the age of ten to fourteen, could all
be acquired in one year, at the Institution described, by a young lady
at the age of fifteen or sixteen.

Instead of such a course as the common one, if mothers would keep their
daughters as their domestic assistants, until they are fourteen,
requiring them to study one lesson, and go out, once a day, to recite it
to a teacher, it would abundantly prepare them, after their
constitutions are firmly established, to enter such an institution,
where, in three years, they could secure more, than almost any young
lady in the Country now gains by giving the whole of her youth to school

In the early years of female life, reading, writing, needlework,
drawing, and music, should alternate with domestic duties; and one hour
a day, devoted to some study, in addition to the above pursuits, would
be all that is needful to prepare them for a thorough education after
growth is attained, and the constitution established. This is the time
when young women would feel the value of an education, and pursue their
studies with that maturity of mind, and vividness of interest, which
would double the perpetuity and value of all their acquisitions.

The great difficulty, which opposes such a plan, is, the want of
institutions that would enable a young lady to complete, in three years,
the liberal course of study, here described. But if American mothers
become convinced of the importance of such advantages for their
daughters, and will use their influence appropriately and efficiently,
they will certainly be furnished. There are other men of liberality and
wealth, besides the individual referred to, who can be made to feel that
a fortune, expended in securing an appropriate education to American
women, is as wisely bestowed, as in founding colleges for the other sex,
who are already so abundantly supplied. We ought to have institutions,
similar to the one described, in every part of this Nation; and funds
should be provided, for educating young women destitute of means: and if
American women think and feel, that, by such a method, their own trials
will be lightened, and their daughters will secure a healthful
constitution and a thorough domestic and intellectual education, the
appropriate expression of their wishes will secure the necessary funds.
The tide of charity, which has been so long flowing from the female hand
to provide a liberal education for young men, will flow back with
abundant remuneration.

The last method suggested for lessening the evils peculiar to American
women, is, a decided effort to oppose the aristocratic feeling, that
labor is degrading; and to bring about the impression, that it is
refined and lady-like to engage in domestic pursuits. In past ages, and
in aristocratic countries, leisure and indolence and frivolous pursuits
have been deemed lady-like and refined, because those classes, which
were most refined, countenanced such an opinion. But whenever ladies of
refinement, as a general custom, patronise domestic pursuits, then
these employments will be deemed lady-like. It may be urged, however,
that it is impossible for a woman who cooks, washes, and sweeps, to
appear in the dress, or acquire the habits and manners, of a lady; that
the drudgery of the kitchen is dirty work, and that no one can appear
delicate and refined, while engaged in it. Now all this depends on
circumstances. If a woman has a house, destitute of neat and convenient
facilities; if she has no habits of order and system; if she is remiss
and careless in person and dress;--then all this may be true. But, if a
woman will make some sacrifices of costly ornaments in her parlor, in
order to make her kitchen neat and tasteful; if she will sacrifice
expensive dishes, in order to secure such conveniences for labor as
protect from exposures; if she will take pains to have the dresses, in
which she works, made of suitable materials, and in good taste; if she
will rise early, and systematize and oversee the work of her family, so
as to have it done thoroughly, neatly, and in the early part of the day;
she will find no necessity for any such apprehensions. It is because
such work has generally been done by vulgar people, and in a vulgar way,
that we have such associations; and when ladies manage such things, as
ladies should, then such associations will be removed. There are
pursuits, deemed very refined and genteel, which involve quite as much
exposure as kitchen employments. For example, to draw a large landscape,
in colored crayons, would be deemed very lady-like; but the writer can
testify, from sad experience, that no cooking, washing, sweeping, or any
other domestic duty, ever left such deplorable traces on hands, face,
and dress, as this same lady-like pursuit. Such things depend entirely
on custom and associations; and every American woman, who values the
institutions of her Country, and wishes to lend her influence in
extending and perpetuating such blessings, may feel that she is doing
this, whenever, by her example and influence, she destroys the
aristocratic association, which would render domestic labor degrading.


[C] The writer omits the name of this Institution, lest an inference
should be drawn which would be unjust to other institutions. There are
others equally worthy of notice, and the writer selects this only
because her attention was especially directed to it as being in a new
State, and endowed wholly by an individual.

[D] From two Greek words,--[Greek: kalos], _kalos_, beauty, and [Greek:
sthenos], _sthenos_, strength, being the union of both. The writer is
now preparing for the press, an improved system, of her own invention,
which, in _some_ of its parts, has been successfully introduced into
several female seminaries, with advantage. This plan combines singing
with a great variety of amusing and graceful evolutions, designed to
promote both health and easy manners.

[E] This work, which has gone through numerous editions, and been
received by the public with great favour, forms No. lxxxv. of the
"Family Library," and No. lvii. of the "School District Library," issued
by the publishers of this volume. It is abundantly illustrated by
engravings, and has been extensively introduced as a school text-book.



The greatest impediment to making Domestic Economy a branch of study,
is, the fact, that neither parents nor teachers realize the importance,
or the practicability of constituting it a regular part of school

It is with reference to this, that the first aim of the writer will be,
to point out some of the reasons for introducing Domestic Economy as a
branch of female education, to be studied at school.

The first reason, is, that there is no period, in a young lady's life,
when she will not find such knowledge useful to herself and to others.
The state of domestic service, in this Country, is so precarious, that
there is scarcely a family, in the free States, of whom it can be
affirmed, that neither sickness, discontent, nor love of change, will
deprive them of all their domestics, so that every female member of the
family will be required to lend some aid, in providing food and the
conveniences of living; and the better she is qualified to render it,
the happier she will be, and the more she will contribute to the
enjoyment of others.

A second reason, is, that every young lady, at the close of her
schooldays, and even before they are closed, is liable to be placed in a
situation, in which she will need to do, herself, or to teach others to
do, all the various processes and duties detailed in this work. That
this may be more fully realized, the writer will detail some instances,
which have come under her own observation.

The eldest daughter of a family returned from school, on a visit, at
sixteen years of age. Before her vacation had closed, her mother was
laid in the grave; and such were her father's circumstances, that she
was obliged to assume the cares and duties of her lost parent. The care
of an infant, the management of young children, the superintendence of
domestics, the charge of family expenses, the responsibility of
entertaining company, and the many other cares of the family state, all
at once came upon this young and inexperienced schoolgirl.

Again; a young lady went to reside with a married sister, in a distant
State. While on this visit, the elder sister died, and there was no one
but this young lady to fill the vacant place, and assume all the cares
of the nursery, parlor, and kitchen.

Again; a pupil of the writer, at the end of her schooldays, married, and
removed to the West. She was an entire novice in all domestic matters;
an utter stranger in the place to which she removed. In a year, she
became a mother, and _her health failed_; while, for most of the time,
she had no domestics, at all, or only Irish or Germans, who scarcely
knew even the names, or the uses, of many cooking utensils. She was
treated with politeness by her neighbors, and wished to return their
civilities; but how could this young and delicate creature, who had
spent all her life at school, or in visiting and amusement, take care of
her infant, attend to her cooking, washing, ironing, and baking, the
concerns of her parlor, chambers, kitchen, and cellar, and yet visit and
receive company? If there is any thing that would make a kindly heart
ache, with sorrow and sympathy, it would be to see so young, so amiable,
so helpless a martyr to the mistaken system of female education now
prevalent. "I have the kindest of husbands," said the young wife, after
her narrative of sufferings, "and I never regretted my marriage; but,
since this babe was born, I have never had a single waking hour of
freedom from anxiety and care. O! how little young girls know what is
before them, when they enter married life!" Let the mother or teacher,
whose eye may rest on these lines, ask herself, if there is no cause for
fear that the young objects of her care may be thrown into similar
emergencies, where they may need a kind of preparation, which as yet has
been withheld.

Another reason for introducing such a subject, as a distinct branch of
school education, is, that, as a general fact, young ladies _will not_
be taught these things in any other way. In reply to the
thousand-times-repeated remark, that girls must be taught their domestic
duties by their mothers, at home, it may be inquired, in the first
place, What proportion of mothers are qualified to teach a _proper_ and
_complete_ system of Domestic Economy? When this is answered, it may be
asked, What proportion of those who are qualified, have that sense of
the importance of such instructions, and that energy and perseverance
which would enable them actually to teach their daughters, in all the
branches of Domestic Economy presented in this work?

It may then be asked, How many mothers _actually do_ give their
daughters instruction in the various branches of Domestic Economy? Is it
not the case, that, owing to ill health, deficiency of domestics, and
multiplied cares and perplexities, a large portion of the most
intelligent mothers, and those, too, who most realize the importance of
this instruction, actually cannot find the time, and have not the
energy, necessary to properly perform the duty? They are taxed to the
full amount of both their mental and physical energies, and cannot
attempt any thing more. Almost every woman knows, that it is easier to
do the work, herself, than it is to teach an awkward and careless
novice; and the great majority of women, in this Country, are obliged to
do almost every thing in the shortest and easiest way. This is one
reason why the daughters of very energetic and accomplished housekeepers
are often the most deficient in these respects; while the daughters of
ignorant or inefficient mothers, driven to the exercise of their own
energies, often become the most systematic and expert.

It may be objected, that such things cannot be taught by books. This
position may fairly be questioned. Do not young ladies learn, from
books, how to make hydrogen and oxygen? Do they not have pictures of
furnaces, alembics, and the various utensils employed in _cooking_ the
chemical agents? Do they not study the various processes of mechanics,
and learn to understand and to do many as difficult operations, as any
that belong to housekeeping? All these things are explained, studied,
and recited in classes, when every one knows that little practical use
can ever be made of this knowledge. Why, then, should not that science
and art, which a woman is to practise during her whole life, be studied
and recited?

It may be urged, that, even if it is studied, it will soon be forgotten.
And so will much of every thing studied at school. But why should that
knowledge, most needful for daily comfort, most liable to be in demand,
be the only study omitted, because it may be forgotten?

It may also be objected, that young ladies can get such books, and
attend to them out of school. And so they can get books on Chemistry and
Philosophy, and study them out of school; but _will_ they do it? And why
ought we not to make sure of the most necessary knowledge, and let the
less needful be omitted? If young ladies study such a work as this, in
school, they will remember a great part of it; and, when they forget, in
any emergency, they will know where to resort for instruction. But if
such books are not put into schools, probably not one in twenty will see
or hear of them, especially in those retired places where they are most
needed. And is it at all probable, that a branch, which is so lightly
esteemed as to be deemed unworthy a place in the list of female studies,
will be sought for and learned by young girls, who so seldom look into
works of solid instruction after they leave school? So deeply is the
writer impressed with the importance of this, as a branch of female
education, at school, that she would deem it far safer and wiser to omit
any other, rather than this.

Another reason, for introducing such a branch of study into female
schools, is, the influence it would exert, in leading young ladies more
correctly to estimate the importance and dignity of domestic knowledge.
It is now often the case, that young ladies rather pride themselves on
their ignorance of such subjects; and seem to imagine that it is vulgar
and ungenteel to know how to work. This is one of the relics of an
aristocratic state of society, which is fast passing away. Here, the
tendency of every thing is to the equalisation of labor, so that all
classes are feeling, more and more, that indolence is disreputable. And
there are many mothers, among the best educated and most wealthy
classes, who are bringing up their daughters, not only to know how to
do, but actually to do, all kinds of domestic work. The writer knows
young ladies, who are daughters of men of wealth and standing, and who
are among the most accomplished in their sphere, who have for months
been sent to work with a mantuamaker, to acquire a practical knowledge
of her occupation, and who have at home learned to perform all kinds of
domestic labor.

And let the young women of this Nation find, that Domestic Economy is
placed, in schools, on equal or superior ground to Chemistry,
Philosophy, and Mathematics, and they will blush to be found ignorant of
its first principles, as much as they will to hesitate respecting the
laws of gravity, or the composition of the atmosphere. But, as matters
are now conducted, many young ladies know how to make oxygen and
hydrogen, and to discuss questions of Philosophy or Political Economy,
far better than they know how to make a bed and sweep a room properly;
and they can "construct a diagram" in Geometry, with far more skill than
they can make the simplest article of female dress.

It may be urged, that the plan suggested by the writer, in the previous
pages, would make such a book as this needless; for young ladies would
learn all these things at home, before they go to school. But it must be
remembered, that the plan suggested cannot fully be carried into effect,
till such endowed institutions, as the one described, are universally
furnished. This probably will not be done, till at least one generation
of young women are educated. It is only on the supposition that a young
lady can, at fourteen or fifteen years of age, enter such an
institution, and continue there three years, that it would be easy to
induce her to remain, during all the previous period, at home, in the
practice of Domestic Economy, and the limited course of study pointed
out. In the present imperfect, desultory, varying, mode of female
education, where studies are begun, changed, partially learned, and
forgotten, it requires nearly all the years of a woman's youth, to
acquire the intellectual education now demanded. While this state of
things continues, the only remedy is, to introduce Domestic Economy as a
study at school.

It is hoped that these considerations will have weight, not only with
parents and teachers, but with young ladies themselves, and that all
will unite their influence to introduce this, as a popular and universal
branch of education, into every female school.



There is no point, where a woman is more liable to suffer from a want of
knowledge and experience, than in reference to the health of a family
committed to her care. Many a young lady, who never had any charge of
the sick; who never took any care of an infant; who never obtained
information on these subjects from books, or from the experience of
others; in short, with little or no preparation; has found herself the
principal attendant in dangerous sickness, the chief nurse of a feeble
infant, and the responsible guardian of the health of a whole family.

The care, the fear, the perplexity, of a woman, suddenly called to
these unwonted duties, none can realize, till they themselves feel it,
or till they see some young and anxious novice first attempting to meet
such responsibilities. To a woman of age and experience, these duties
often involve a measure of trial and difficulty, at times deemed almost
insupportable; how hard, then, must they press on the heart of the young
and inexperienced!

There is no really efficacious mode of preparing a woman to take a
_rational_ care of the health of a family, except by communicating that
knowledge, in regard to the construction of the body, and the laws of
health, which is the basis of the medical profession. Not that a woman
should undertake the minute and extensive investigation requisite for a
physician; but she should gain a general knowledge of first principles,
as a guide to her judgement in emergencies when she can rely on no other
aid. Therefore, before attempting to give any specific directions on the
subject of this chapter, a short sketch of the construction of the human
frame will be given, with a notice of some of the general principles, on
which specific rules in regard to health are based. This description
will be arranged under the general heads of BONES, MUSCLES, NERVES,


The bones are the most solid parts of the body. They are designed to
protect and sustain it, and also to secure voluntary motion. They are
about two hundred and fifty in number, (there being sometimes a few more
or less,) and are fastened together by cartilage, or gristle, a
substance like the bones, but softer, and more elastic.

In order to convey a more clear and correct idea of the form, relative
position, and connection, of the bones constituting the human framework,
the engraving on page 70, (Fig. 1,) is given.

[Illustration: Fig. 1.]

By the preceding engraving, it will be seen, that the _cranium_, or
_skull_, consists of several distinct pieces, which are united by
sutures, (or seams,) as represented by the zigzag lines; _a_, being the
_frontal bone_; _b_, the _parietal bone_; _c_, the _temporal bone_; and
_d_, the place of the _occipital bone_, which forms the back part of the
head, and therefore is not seen in the engraving. The _nasal bones_, or
bones of the nose, are shown at _e_; _f_, is the _cheek bone_; _g_, the
_upper_, and _h_, the _lower, jaw bones_; _i_, _i_, the _spinal column_,
or back bone, consisting of numerous small bones, called _vertebræ_;
_j_, _j_, the seven _true ribs_, which are fastened to the spine,
behind, and by the _cartilages_, _k_, _k_, to the _sternum_, or _breast
bone_, _l_, in front; _m_, _m_, are the first three _false ribs_, which
are so called, because they are not united directly to the breast bone,
but by cartilages to the seventh true rib; _n_, _n_, are the lower two
_false_, which are also called _floating, ribs_, because they are not
connected with the breast bone, nor the other ribs, in front; _o_, _o_,
_p_, _q_, are the bones of the _pelvis_, which is the foundation on
which the spine rests; _r_, _r_, are the _collar bones_; _s_, _s_, the
_shoulder blades_; _t_, _t_, the bones of the _upper arm_; _u_, _u_, the
_elbow joints_, where the bones of the upper arm and fore arm are united
in such a way that they can move like a hinge; _v_ _w_, _v_ _w_, are the
bones of the _fore arm_; _x_, _x_, those of the _wrists_; _y_, _y_,
those of the _fingers_; _z_, _z_, are the round heads of the thigh
bones, where they are inserted into the sockets of the bones of the
pelvis, giving motion in every direction, and forming the _hip joint_; a
b, a b, are the _thigh bones_; c, c, the _knee joints_; d e, d e, the
_leg bones_; f, f, the _ankle joints_; g, g, the _bones of the foot_.

The bones are composed of two substances,--one animal, and the other
mineral. The animal part is a very fine network, called the _cellular
membrane_. In this, are deposited the harder mineral substances, which
are composed principally of carbonate and phosphate of lime. In very
early life, the bones consist chiefly of the animal part, and are then
soft and pliant. As the child advances in age, the bones grow harder, by
the gradual deposition of the phosphate of lime, which is supplied by
the food, and carried to the bones by the blood. In old age, the hardest
material preponderates; making the bones more brittle than in earlier

As we shall soon have occasion to refer, particularly, to the spinal, or
vertebral column, and the derangement to which it is liable, we give, on
page 72, representations of the different classes of vertebræ; viz. the
_cervical_, (from the Latin, _cervix_, the neck,) the _dorsal_, (from
_dorsum_, the back,) and _lumbar_, (from _lumbus_, the loins.)

[Illustration: Fig. 2.]

Fig. 2, represents one of the _cervical vertebræ_. Seven of these,
placed one above another, constitute that part of the spine which is in
the neck.

[Illustration: Fig. 3.]

Fig. 3, is one of the _dorsal vertebræ_, twelve of which, form the
central part of the spine.

[Illustration: Fig. 4.]

Fig. 4, represents one of the _lumbar vertebræ_, (five in number,)
which are immediately above the sacrum. These vertebræ are so fastened,
that the spine can bend, in any direction; and the muscles of the trunk
are used in holding it erect, or in varying its movements.

By the drawings here presented, it will be seen, that the vertebræ of
the neck, back, and loins, differ somewhat in size and shape, although
they all possess the same constituent parts; thus, A, in each,
represents the body of the vertebræ; B, the articulating processes, by
which each is joined to its fellow, above and below it; C, the spinous
process, or that part of the vertebræ, which forms the ridge to be felt,
on pressure, the whole length of the centre of the back. The back bone
receives its name, _spine_, or _spinal column_, from these spinous

It is the universal law of the human frame, that _exercise_ is
indispensable to the health of the several parts. Thus, if a
blood-vessel be tied up, so as not to be used, it shrinks, and becomes a
useless string; if a muscle be condemned to inaction, it shrinks in
size, and diminishes in power; and thus it is also with the bones.
Inactivity produces softness, debility, and unfitness for the functions
they are designed to perform. This is one of the causes of the curvature
of the spine, that common and pernicious defect in the females of
America. From inactivity, the bones of the spine become soft and
yielding; and then, if the person is often placed, for a length of time,
in positions that throw the weight of the body unequally on certain
portions of the spine, they yield to this frequent compression, and a
distortion ensues. The positions taken by young persons, when learning
to write or draw, or to play on the guitar, harp, or piano, and the
position of the body when sleeping on one side, on high pillows, all
tend to produce this effect, by throwing the weight of the body
unequally, and for a length of time, on particular parts of the spine.

[Illustration: Fig. 5.]


The muscles are the chief organs of motion, and consist of collections
of fine fibres or strings, united in casings of membrane or thin skin.
They possess an elastic power, like India rubber, which enables them to
extend and contract. The red meat in animals consists of muscles. Every
muscle has connected with it nerves, veins, and arteries; and those
designed to move the bones, are fastened to them by tendons at their
extremities. The muscles are laid over each other, and are separated by
means of membranes and layers of fat, which enable them to move easily,
without interfering with each other.

The figure on page 74, represents the muscles of the arm, as they appear
when the skin and fat are removed. The muscles _a_ and _b_ are attached,
at their upper ends, to the bone of the arm, and by their lower ends to
the upper part of the fore arm, near the elbow joint. When the fibres of
these muscles contract, the middle part of them grows larger, and the
arm is bent at the elbow. The muscle _c_, is, in like manner, fastened,
by its upper end, to the shoulder blade and the upper part of the arm,
and by its lower end to one of the bones of the fore arm, near the
elbow. When the arm is bent, and we wish to straighten it, it is done by
contracting this muscle. The muscles _d_, _d_, are fastened at one end
near the elbow joint, and at the other near the ends of the fingers; and
on the back of the hand are reduced in size, appearing like strong
cords. These cords are called _tendons_. They are employed in
straightening the fingers, when the hand is shut. These tendons are
confined by the ligament or band, _e_, which binds them down, around the
wrist, and thus enables them to act more efficiently, and secures beauty
of form to the limb. The muscles at _f_, are those which enable us to
turn the hand and arm outward. Every different motion of the arm has one
muscle to produce it, and another to restore the limb to its natural
position. Those muscles which bend the body are called _flexors_; those
which straighten it, _extensors_. When the arm is thrown up, one set of
muscles is used; to pull it down, another set: when it is thrown
forward, a still different set is used; when it is thrown back,
another, different from the former; when the arm turns in its socket,
still another set is used; and thus every different motion of the body
is made by a different set of muscles. All these muscles are compactly
and skilfully arranged, so as to work with perfect ease. Among them, run
the arteries, veins, and nerves, which supply each muscle with blood and
nervous power, as will be hereafter described. The size and strength of
the muscles depend greatly on their frequent exercise. If left inactive,
they grow thin and weak, instead of giving the plumpness to the figure,
designed by Nature. The delicate and feeble appearance of many American
women, is chiefly owing to the little use they make of their muscles.
Many a pale, puny, shad-shaped girl, would have become a plump, rosy,
well-formed person, if half the exercise, afforded to her brothers in
the open air, had been secured to her, during childhood and youth.


The nerves are the organs of sensation. They enable us to see, hear,
feel, taste, and smell; and also combine with the bones and muscles in
producing motion.

The first engraving, on p. 77, (Fig. 6,) is a vertical section of the
skull, and of the spinal column, or back bone, which supports the head,
and through which runs the spinal cord, whence most of the nerves
originate. It is a side view, and represents the head and spine, as they
would appear, if they were cut through the middle, from front to back.
Fig. 7, exhibits them as they would appear, if viewed from _behind_. In
Fig. 6, _a_, represents the _cerebrum_, or great brain; _b_, the
_cerebellum_, or little brain, which is situated directly under the
great brain, at the back and lower part of the head; _c_, _d_, _e_, is
the spinal marrow, which is connected with the brain at _c_, and runs
through the whole length of the spinal column. This column consists, as
has already been stated, of a large number of small bones, _f_, _f_,
called _vertebræ_, laid one above another, and fastened together by
_cartilage_, or _gristle_, _g_, between them.

[Illustration: Fig. 6.]

[Illustration: Fig. 7.]

Between each two vertebræ, or spinal bones, there issues from the
spine, on each side, a pair of nerves. The lower broad part of the
spine, (see _p_, Fig. 1, p. 70, and Fig. 7, p. 77,) is called the
_sacrum_; in this, are eight holes, through which the lower pairs of
nerves pass off.

The nerves of the head and lungs run directly from the brain; those of
all other parts of the body proceed from the spine, passing out in the
manner already mentioned.

The nerves which thus proceed from the spine, branch out, like the limbs
and twigs of a tree, till they extend over the whole body; and, so
minutely are they divided and arranged, that a point, destitute of a
nerve, cannot be found on the skin.

Some idea of the ramifications of the nerves, may be obtained by
reference to the following engraving, (Fig. 8.) In this, A, A,
represents the _cerebrum_, or great brain; B, B, the _cerebellum_, or
little brain; (see also _a_, _b_, in Fig. 6;) C, C, represents the union
of the fibres of the cerebrum; D, D, the union of the two sides of the
cerebellum; E, E, E, the spinal marrow, which passes through the centre
of the spine, (as seen at _c_, _d_, _e_, in Fig. 6;) 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6,
branches of the nerves going to different parts of the body. As the
nerves are the organs of sensation, all _pain_ is an affection of some
portion of the nerves. The health of the nerves depends very greatly on
the exercise of the muscles, with which they are so intimately
connected. This shows the reason why the _headache_, _tic douloureux_,
diseases of the _spine_, and other nervous affections, are so common
among American women. Their inactive habits, engender a debility of the
nervous system, and these diseases follow, as the consequence.

[Illustration: Fig. 8.]

It can be seen, by a reference to the side view, represented on page
77, (Fig. 6,) that the spine is naturally curved back and forward.
When, from want of exercise, its bones are softened, and the muscles
weakened, the spine acquires an improper curve, and the person becomes
what is called _crooked_, having the neck projected forward, and, in
some cases, having the back convex, where it should be concave. Probably
one half of the American women have the head thus projecting forward,
instead of carrying it in the natural, erect position, which is both
graceful and dignified.

The curvature of the spine, spoken of in this work as so common, and as
the cause of so many diseases among American women, is what is
denominated the _lateral curvature_, and is much more dangerous than the
other distortion. The indications of this evil, are, the projection of
one shoulder blade more than the other, and, in bad cases, one shoulder
being higher, and the hip on the opposite side more projecting, than the
other. In this case, the spine, when viewed from behind, instead of
running in a straight line, (as in Fig. 7 and 9,) is curved somewhat, as
may be seen in Figures 10 and 11.

This effect is occasioned by the softness of the bones, induced by want
of exercise, together with tight dressing, which tends to weaken the
muscles that are thus thrown out of use. Improper and long continued
positions in drawing, writing, and sleeping, which throw the weight of
the body on one part of the spine, induce the same evil. This distortion
is usually accompanied with some consequent disease of the nervous
system, or some disarrangement of the internal organs.

By comparing Figures 9 and 11, the difference between a natural and
distorted spine will be readily perceived. In Fig. 10, the curved line
shows the course of the spine, occasioned by distortion; the
perpendicular line, in this and Fig. 11, indicates the true direction of
the spine; the horizontal lines show that one shoulder and hip are
forced from their proper level.

[Illustration: Fig. 9.]

[Illustration: Fig. 10.]

[Illustration: Fig. 11.]


The blood is the fluid into which our food is changed, and which is
employed to minister nourishment to the whole body. For this purpose, it
is carried to every part of the body, by the arteries; and, after it has
given out its nourishment, returns to the heart, through the veins.

The subjoined engraving, (Fig. 12,) which presents a rude outline of the
vascular system, will more clearly illustrate this operation, as we
shall presently show.

[Illustration: Fig. 12.]

Before entering the heart, the blood receives a fresh supply of
nourishment, by a duct which leads from the stomach. The arteries have
their origin from the heart, in a great trunk, called the _aorta_, which
is the parent of all the arteries, as the spinal marrow is the parent of
the nerves which it sends out. When the arteries have branched out into
myriads of minute vessels, the blood which is in them passes into as
minute veins; and these run into each other, like the rills and branches
of a river, until they are all united in two great veins, which run into
the heart. One of these large receivers, called the _vena cava
superior_, or _upper vena cava_, brings back the blood from the arms and
head, the other, the _vena cava inferior_, or _lower vena cava_, brings
back the blood from the body and lower limbs.

In the preceding figure, H, is the heart, which is divided into four
compartments; two, called _auricles_, used for receiving the blood, and
two, called _ventricles_, used for sending out the blood. A, is the
_aorta_, or great artery, which sends its branches to every part of the
body. In the upper part, at _a_, _a_, _a_, are the main branches of the
_aorta_, which go to the head and arms. Below, at _a_, _a_, are the
branches which go to the lower limbs. The branches which set off at X,
X, are those by which the intestines are supplied by vessels from the
_aorta_. Every muscle in the whole body, all the organs of the body, and
the skin, are supplied by branches sent off from this great _artery_.
When the blood is thus dispersed through any organ, in minute vessels,
it is received, at their terminations, by numerous minute veins, which
gradually unite, forming larger branches, till they all meet in either
the upper or lower _vena cava_, which returns the blood to the heart. V
I, is the _vena cava inferior_, which receives the blood from the veins
of the lower parts of the body, as seen at v, v. The blood, sent into
the lower limbs from the _aorta_, is received by minute veins, which
finally unite at v, v, and thus it is emptied through the lower _vena
cava_ into the heart: _o_, _o_, represent the points of entrance of
those tributaries of the _vena cava_, which receive that blood from the
intestines, which is sent out by the _aorta_ at X, X. In the upper part,
V S, is the _vena cava superior_, which receives the blood from the head
and arms; v, v, v, are the tributaries of the upper _vena cava_, which
bring the blood back from the head and arms; _d_, _d_, represents the
course of the _thoracic duct_, a delicate tube by which the chyle is
carried into the blood, as mentioned on page 89; _t_, shows the place
where this duct empties into a branch of the _vena cava_.

It thus appears, that wherever a branch of the _aorta_ goes to carry
blood, there will be found a tributary of the upper or lower _vena
cava_, to bring it back.

The succeeding engravings, will enable the reader to form a more
definite idea of this important function of the system,--the circulation
of the blood. The heart, in man, and in all warm-blooded animals, is
double, having two auricles and two ventricles. In animals with cold
blood, (as fishes,) the heart is single, having but one auricle and one
ventricle. Fig. 13, represents the double heart as it appears when the
two sides are separated, and also the great blood-vessels; those on the
left of the figure being on the right side of the body, and _vice
versa_. The direction of the blood is represented by the arrows. A,
represents the _lower vena cava_, returning the blood from the lower
parts of the body, and L, the _upper vena cava_, returning the blood
from the head and arms. B, is the _right sinus_, or _auricle_, into
which the returned blood is poured. From this cavity of the heart, the
blood is carried into the _right ventricle_, C; and from this ventricle,
the _pulmonary arteries_, D, convey into the lungs the blood which is
returned from the body. These five vessels, A, B, C, D, and L, belong to
the right side of the heart, and contain the venous or dark-colored
blood, which has been through the circulation, and is now unfit for the
uses of the system, till it has passed through the lungs.

[Illustration: Fig. 13.]

When the blood reaches the lungs, and is exposed to the action of the
air which we breathe, it throws off its impurities, becomes bright in
color, and is then called arterial blood. It then returns to the left
side of the heart, (on the right of the engraving,) by the pulmonary
veins E, E, (also seen at _m_, _m_, Fig. 15,) into the left auricle F,
whence it is forced into the ventricle, G. From the left ventricle,
proceeds the _aorta_, H, H, which is the great artery of the body, and
conveys the blood to every part of the system. I, J, K, are branches of
the aorta, going to the head and arms.

[Illustration: Fig. 14.]

Fig. 14, represents the heart, with its two sides united as in nature;
and will be understood from the description of Fig. 13.

On the opposite page, Fig. 15, represents the heart, with the great
blood-vessels, on a still larger scale; _a_, being the _left ventricle_;
_b_, the _right ventricle_; _c_, _e_, _f_, the _aorta_, or great artery,
rising out of the left ventricle; _g_, _h_, _i_, the branches of the
aorta, going to the head and arms; _k_, _l_, _l_, the _pulmonary
artery_, and its branches; _m_, _m_, _veins of the lungs_, which bring
the blood back from the lungs to the heart; _n_, _right auricle_; _o_,
_vena cava inferior_; _p_, veins returning blood from the liver and
bowels; _q_, the _vena cava superior_; _r_, the _left auricle_; _s_, the
left _coronary artery_, which distributes the blood exclusively to the
substance of the heart.

[Illustration: Fig. 15.]


Digestion and respiration are the processes, by which the food is
converted into blood for the nourishment of the body. The engraving on
the next page (Fig. 16) shows the organs by which these operations are

In the lower part of the engraving, is the stomach, marked S, which
receives the food through the _gullet_, marked G. The latter, though in
the engraving it is cut off at G, in reality continues upwards to the
throat. The stomach is a bag composed of muscles, nerves, and
blood-vessels, united by a material similar to that which forms the
skin. As soon as food enters the stomach, its nerves are excited to
perform their proper function of stimulating the muscles. A muscular
(called the _peristaltic_) motion immediately commences, by which the
stomach propels its contents around the whole of its circumference, once
in every three minutes.

[Illustration: Fig. 16.]

This movement of the muscles attracts the blood from other parts of the
system; for the blood always hastens to administer its supplies to any
organ which is called to work. The blood-vessels of the stomach are soon
distended with blood, from which the _gastric juice_ is secreted by
minute vessels in the coat of the stomach. This mixes with the food,
and reduces it to a soft pulpy mass, called chyme. It then passes
through the lower end of the stomach, into the intestines, which are
folded up in the abdomen, and the upper portion, only, of which, is
shown in the engraving, at A, A. The organ marked L, L, is the liver,
which, as the blood passes through its many vessels, secretes a
substance called _bile_, which accumulates in the gall-bladder, marked
B. After the food passes out of the stomach, it receives from the liver
a portion of bile, and from the _pancreas_ the _pancreatic juice_. The
pancreas does not appear in this drawing, being concealed behind the
stomach. These two liquids separate the substance which has passed from
the stomach, into two different portions. One is a light liquid, very
much like cream in appearance, and called _chyle_, of which the blood is
formed; the other is a more solid substance, which contains the refuse
and useless matter, with a smaller portion of nourishment; and this,
after being further separated from the nourishing matter which it
contains, is thrown out of the body. There are multitudes of small
vessels, called _lacteals_, which, as these two mixed substances pass
through the long and winding folds of the intestines in the abdomen,
absorb the chyle, and convey it to the _thoracic duct_, which runs up
close by the spine, and carries the chyle, thus received, into a branch
of the _vena cava superior_, at _t_, whence it is mingled with the blood
going into the heart. In this engraving, the _lacteals_ and _thoracic
duct_ are not shown; but their position is indicated by the dotted
lines, marked X, Y; X, being the lacteals, and Y, the thoracic duct.

In the upper half of the engraving, H represents the heart; _a_, the
commencement of the _aorta_; _v c s_, the termination of the _vena cava
superior_. On each side of the heart, are the lungs; _l l_, being the
left lobe, and _r l_, the right lobe. They are composed of a network of
air-vessels, blood-vessels, and nerves. W, represents the _trachea_, or
_windpipe_, through which, the air we breathe is conducted to the lungs.
It branches out into myriads of minute vessels, which are thus filled
with air every time we breathe. From the heart, run the _pulmonary
arteries_, marked _p a_. These enter the lungs and spread out along-side
of the branches of the air-vessels, so that every air-vessel has a small
artery running side by side with it. When the two _vena cavas_ empty the
blood into the heart, the latter contracts, and sends this blood,
through these pulmonary arteries, into the lungs.

As the air and blood meander, side by side, through the lungs, the
superabundant carbon and hydrogen of the blood combine with the oxygen
of the air, forming carbonic acid gas, and water, which are thrown out
of the lungs at every expiration. This is the process by which the chyle
is converted into arterial blood, and the venous blood purified of its
excess of carbon and hydrogen. When the blood is thus prepared, in the
lungs, for its duties, it is received by the small _pulmonary veins_,
which gradually unite, and bring the blood back to the heart, through
the large _pulmonary veins_, marked _p v_, _p v_.

On receiving this purified blood from the lungs, the heart contracts,
and sends it out again, through the _aorta_, to all parts of the body.
It then makes another circuit through every part, ministering to the
wants of all, and is afterwards again brought back by the veins to
receive the fresh chyle from the stomach, and to be purified by the

The throbbing of the heart is caused by its alternate expansion and
contraction, as it receives and expels the blood. With one throb, the
blood is sent from the right ventricle into the lungs, and from the left
ventricle into the aorta.

Every time we inspire air, the process of purifying the blood is going
on; and every time we expire the air, we throw out the redundant carbon
and hydrogen, taken from a portion of the blood. If the waist is
compressed by tight clothing, a portion of the lungs be compressed, so
that the air-vessels cannot be filled. This prevents the perfect
purification and preparation of the blood, so that a part returns back
to the heart unfitted for its duties. This is a slow, but sure, method,
by which the constitution of many a young lady is so undermined that she
becomes an early victim to disease and to the decay of beauty and
strength. The want of _pure air_ is another cause, of the debility of
the female constitution. When air has been rendered impure, by the
breath of several persons, or by close confinement, it does not purify
the blood properly. Sleeping in close chambers, and sitting in crowded
and unventilated schoolrooms, are frequent causes of debility in the
constitution of young persons.


The skin is the covering of the body, and has very important functions
to perform. It is more abundantly supplied with nerves and blood-vessels
than any other part; and there is no spot of the skin where the point of
the finest needle would not pierce a nerve and blood-vessel. Indeed, it
may be considered as composed chiefly of an interlacing of minute nerves
and blood-vessels, so that it is supposed there is more nervous matter
in the skin, than in all the rest of the body united, and that the
greater portion of the blood flows through the skin.

The whole animal system is in a state of continual change and
renovation. Food is constantly taken into the stomach, only a portion of
which is fitted for the supply of the blood. All the rest has to be
thrown out of the system, by various organs designed for this purpose.
These organs are,--the lungs, which throw off a portion of useless
matter when the blood is purified; the kidneys, which secrete liquids
that pass into the bladder, and are thrown out from the body by that
organ; and the intestines, which carry off the useless and more solid
parts of the food, after the lacteals have drawn off the chyle. In
addition to these organs, the skin has a similar duty to perform; and as
it has so much larger a supply of blood, it is the chief organ in
relieving the body of the useless and noxious parts of the materials
which are taken for food.

Various experiments show, that not less than a pound and four ounces of
waste matter is thrown off by the skin every twenty-four hours. This is
according to the lowest calculation. Most of those, who have made
experiments to ascertain the quantity, represent it as much greater; and
all agree, that the skin throws off more redundant matter from the body,
than the whole of the other organs together. In the ordinary state of
the skin, even when there is no apparent perspiration, it is constantly
exhaling waste matter, in a form which is called _insensible
perspiration_, because it cannot be perceived by the senses. A very cool
mirror, brought suddenly near to the skin, will be covered, in that
part, with a moisture, which is this effluvium thus made visible. When
heat or exercise excites the skin, this perspiration is increased, so as
to be apparent to the senses. This shows the reason why it is so
important frequently to wash the entire surface of the body. If this be
neglected, the pores of the skin are closed by the waste matter thrown
from the body, and by small particles of the thin scarfskin, so that it
cannot properly perform its duties. In this way, the other organs are
made to work harder, in order to perform the labor the skin would
otherwise accomplish, and thus the lungs and bowels are often
essentially weakened.

Another office of the skin, is, to regulate the heat of the body. The
action of the internal organs is constantly generating heat; and the
faster the blood circulates, the greater is the heat evolved. The
perspiration of the skin serves to reduce and regulate this heat. For,
whenever any liquid changes to a vapor, it absorbs heat from whatever is
nearest to it. The faster the blood flows, the more perspiration is
evolved. This bedews the skin with a liquid, which the heat of the body
turns to a vapor; and in this change, that heat is absorbed. When a
fever takes place, this perspiration ceases, and the body is afflicted
with heat. Insensible perspiration is most abundant during sleep, after
eating, and when friction is applied to the skin. Perspiration is
performed by the terminations of minute arteries in every part of the
skin, which exude the perspiration from the blood.

The skin also performs another function. It is provided with a set of
small vessels, called _absorbents_, which are exceedingly abundant and
minute. When particular substances are brought in contact with the skin,
these absorbents take up some portions and carry them into the blood. It
is owing to this, that opium, applied on the skin, acts in a manner
similar to its operation when taken into the stomach. The power of
absorption is increased by friction; and this is the reason that
liniments are employed, with much rubbing, to bruises and sprains. The
substance applied is thus introduced into the injured part, through the
absorbents. This shows another reason for frequent washing of the skin,
and for the frequent changes of the garment next the skin. Otherwise
portions of the noxious matter, thrown out by the skin, are reabsorbed
into the blood, and are slow but sure causes of a decay of the strength
of the system.

The skin is also provided with small follicles, or bags, which are
filled with an oily substance. This, by gradually exuding over the skin,
prevents water from penetrating and injuring its texture.

The skin is also the organ of touch. This office is performed through
the instrumentality of the nerves of feeling, which are spread over all
parts of the skin.

This general outline of the construction of the human frame is given,
with reference to the practical application of this knowledge in the
various cases where a woman will be called upon to exercise her own
unaided judgement. The application will be further pointed out, in the
chapters on Food, Dress, Cleanliness, Care of the Sick, and Care of



The person who decides what shall be the food and drink of a family, and
the modes of preparation, is the one who decides, to a greater or less
extent, what shall be the health of that family. It is the opinion of
most medical men, that intemperance in eating is the most fruitful of
all causes of disease and death. If this be so, the woman who wisely
adapts the food and cooking of her family to the laws of health, removes
the greatest risk which threatens the lives of those under her care.

To exhibit this subject clearly, it will be needful to refer, more
minutely, to the organization and operation of the digestive organs.

It is found, by experiment, that the supply of gastric juice, furnished
from the blood, by the arteries of the stomach, is proportioned, not to
the amount of food put into the stomach, but to the wants of the body;
so that it is possible to put much more into the stomach than can be
digested. To guide and regulate in this matter, the sensation called
_hunger_ is provided. In a healthy state of the body, as soon as the
blood has lost its nutritive supplies, the craving of hunger is felt,
and then, if the food is suitable, and is taken in the proper manner,
this sensation ceases, as soon as the stomach has received enough to
supply the wants of the system. But our benevolent Creator, in this, as
in our other duties, has connected enjoyment with the operation needful
to sustain our bodies. In addition to the allaying of hunger, the
gratification of the palate is secured, by the immense variety of food,
some articles of which are far more agreeable than others.

This arrangement of Providence, designed for our happiness, has become,
either through ignorance, or want of self-control, the chief cause of
the various diseases and sufferings, which afflict those classes who
have the means of seeking a variety to gratify the palate. If mankind
had only one article of food, and only water to drink, though they would
have less enjoyment in eating, they would never be tempted to put any
more into the stomach, than the calls of hunger required. But the
customs of society, which present an incessant change, and a great
variety of food, with those various condiments which stimulate appetite,
lead almost every person very frequently to eat merely to gratify the
palate, after the stomach has been abundantly supplied, so that hunger
has ceased.

When too great a supply of food is put into the stomach, the gastric
juice dissolves only that portion which the wants of the system demand.
The remainder is ejected, in an unprepared state; the absorbents take
portions of it into the system; and all the various functions of the
body, which depend on the ministries of the blood, are thus gradually
and imperceptibly injured. Very often, intemperance in eating produces
immediate results, such as colic, headaches, pains of indigestion, and
vertigo. But the more general result, is, a gradual undermining of all
parts of the human frame; thus imperceptibly shortening life, by so
weakening the constitution, that it is ready to yield, at every point,
to any uncommon risk or exposure. Thousands and thousands are passing
out of the world, from diseases occasioned by exposures, which a healthy
constitution could meet without any danger. It is owing to these
considerations, that it becomes the duty of every woman, who has the
responsibility of providing food for a family, to avoid a variety of
tempting dishes. It is a much safer rule, to have only one kind of
healthy food, for each meal, than the abundant variety which is usually
met at the tables of almost all classes in this Country. When there is
to be any variety of dishes, they ought not to be successive, but so
arranged, as to give the opportunity of selection. How often is it the
case, that persons, by the appearance of a favorite article, are tempted
to eat, merely to gratify the palate, when the stomach is already
adequately supplied. All such intemperance wears on the constitution,
and shortens life. It not unfrequently happens, that excess in eating
produces a morbid appetite, which must constantly be denied.

But the organization of the digestive organs demands, not only that food
be taken in proper quantities, but that it be taken at proper times.

It has before been shown, that, as soon as the food enters the stomach,
the muscles are excited by the nerves, and the _peristaltic motion_
commences. This is a powerful and constant exercise of the muscles of
the stomach, which continues until the process of digestion is complete.
During this time, the blood is withdrawn from other parts of the system,
to supply the demands of the stomach, which is laboring hard with all
its muscles. When this motion ceases, and the digested food has
gradually passed out of the stomach, Nature requires that it should have
a period of repose. And if another meal be eaten, immediately after one
is digested, the stomach is set to work again, before it has had time to
rest, and before a sufficient supply of gastric juice is provided.

The general rule, then, is, that three hours be given to the stomach for
labor, and two for rest; and in obedience to this, five hours, at least,
ought to elapse between every two regular meals. In cases where exercise
produces a flow of perspiration, more food is needed to supply the loss;
and strong laboring men may safely eat as often as they feel the want of
food. So, young and healthy children, who gambol and exercise much, and
whose bodies grow fast, may have a more frequent supply of food. But, as
a general rule, meals should be five hours apart, and eating between
meals avoided. There is nothing more unsafe, and wearing to the
constitution, than a habit of eating at any time, merely to gratify the
palate. When a tempting article is presented, every person should
exercise sufficient self-denial, to wait till the proper time for eating
arrives. Children, as well as grown persons, are often injured, by
eating between their regular meals, thus weakening the stomach, by not
affording it any time for rest.

In deciding as to _quantity_ of food, there is one great difficulty to
be met by a large portion of the community. It has been shown, that the
exercise of every part of the body is indispensable to its health and
perfection. The bones, the muscles, the nerves, the organs of digestion
and respiration, and the skin, all demand exercise, in order properly to
perform their functions. When the muscles of the body are called into
action, all the blood-vessels entwined among them are frequently
compressed. As the arteries are so contrived, that the blood cannot run
back, this compression hastens it forward, through the veins, towards
that organ. The heart is immediately put in quicker motion, to send it
into the lungs; and they, also, are thus stimulated to more rapid
action, which is the cause of that panting which active exercise always
occasions. The blood thus courses with greater celerity through the
body, and sooner loses its nourishing properties. Then the stomach
issues its mandate of hunger, and a new supply of food must be
furnished. Thus it appears, as a general rule, that the quantity of
food, actually needed by the body, depends on the amount of muscular
exercise taken. A laboring man, in the open fields, probably throws off
from his skin ten times the amount of perspirable matter, which is
evolved from the skin of a person of sedentary pursuits. In consequence
of this, he demands a far greater amount of food and drink.

Those persons, who keep their bodies in a state of health, by sufficient
exercise, can always be guided by the calls of hunger. They can eat when
they feel hungry, and stop when hunger ceases; and then they will
calculate exactly right. But the difficulty is, that a large part of
the community, especially women, are so inactive in their habits, that
they seldom feel the calls of hunger. They habitually eat, merely to
gratify the palate. This produces such a state of the system, that they
have lost the guide which Nature has provided. They are not called to
eat, by hunger, nor admonished, by its cessation, when to stop. In
consequence of this, such persons eat what pleases the palate, till they
feel no more inclination for the article. It is probable, that three
fourths of the women, in the wealthier circles, sit down to each meal
without any feeling of hunger, and eat merely on account of the
gratification thus afforded them. Such persons find their appetite to
depend almost solely upon the kind of food on the table. This is not the
case with those, who take the exercise which Nature demands. They
approach their meals in such a state that almost any kind of food is

The question then arises, how are persons, who have lost the guide which
Nature has provided, to determine as to the proper amount of food they
shall take?

The only rules they can adopt, are of a general nature; founded on the
principles already developed. They should endeavor to proportion their
food to the amount of the exercise they ordinarily take. If they take
but little exercise, they should eat but little food in comparison with
those who are much in the open air and take much exercise; and their
food should be chiefly vegetable, and not animal. But how often is it
seen, that a student, or a man who sits all day in an office, or a lady
who spends the day in her parlor and chamber, will sit down to a loaded
table, and, by continuing to partake of the tempting varieties, in the
end load the stomach with a supply, which a stout farmer could scarcely

But the health of a family depends, not merely on the _quantity_ of food
taken; but very much, also, on the _quality_. Some kinds of food are
very pernicious in their nature, and some healthful articles are
rendered very injurious by the mode of cooking. Persons who have a
strong constitution, and take much exercise, may eat almost any thing,
with apparent impunity; but young children, who are forming their
constitutions, and persons who are delicate, and who take but little
exercise, are very dependent for health, on a proper selection of food.

There are some general principles, which may aid in regulating the
judgement on this subject.

It is found, that there are some kinds of food which afford nutriment to
the blood, and do not produce any other effect on the system. There are
other kinds, which are not only nourishing, but _stimulating_, so that
they quicken the functions of the organs on which they operate. The
condiments used in cookery, such as pepper, mustard, and spices, are of
this nature. There are certain states of the system, when these
stimulants are beneficial; but it is only in cases where there is some
debility. Such cases can only be pointed out by medical men. But persons
in perfect health, and especially young children, never receive any
benefit from such kind of food; and just in proportion as condiments
operate to quicken the labors of the internal organs, they tend to wear
down their powers. A person who thus keeps the body working under an
unnatural excitement, _lives faster_ than Nature designed, and the
sooner the constitution is worn out. A woman, therefore, should provide
dishes for her family, which are free from these stimulating condiments,
and as much as possible prevent their use. It is also found, by
experience, that animal food is more stimulating than vegetable. This is
the reason why, in cases of fevers, or inflammations, medical men forbid
the use of meat and butter. Animal food supplies chyle much more
abundantly than vegetable food does; and this chyle is more stimulating
in its nature. Of course, a person who lives chiefly on animal food, is
under a higher degree of stimulus than if his food was chiefly composed
of vegetable substances. His blood will flow faster, and all the
functions of his body will be quickened.

This makes it important to secure a proper proportion of animal and
vegetable diet. Some medical men suppose, that an exclusively vegetable
diet is proved, by the experience of many individuals, to be fully
sufficient to nourish the body; and bring, as evidence, the fact, that
some of the strongest and most robust men in the world, are those, who
are trained, from infancy, exclusively on vegetable food. From this,
they infer, that life will be shortened, just in proportion as the diet
is changed to more stimulating articles; and that, all other things
being equal, children will have a better chance of health and long life,
if they are brought up solely on vegetable food.

But, though this is not the common opinion of medical men, they all
agree, that, in America, far too large a portion of the diet consists of
animal food. As a nation, the Americans are proverbial for the gross and
luxurious diet with which they load their tables; and there can be no
doubt that the general health of the Nation would be increased, by a
change in our customs in this respect. To take meat but once a day, and
this in small quantities, compared with the common practice, is a rule,
the observance of which would probably greatly reduce the amount of
fevers, eruptions, headaches, bilious attacks, and the many other
ailments which are produced or aggravated by too gross a diet.

The celebrated Roman physician, Baglivi, (who, from practising
extensively among Roman Catholics, had ample opportunities to observe,)
mentions, that, in Italy, an unusual number of people recover their
health in the forty days of Lent, in consequence of the lower diet which
is required as a religious duty. An American physician remarks, "For
every reeling drunkard that disgraces our Country, it contains one
hundred gluttons;--persons, I mean, who eat to excess, and suffer in
consequence." Another distinguished physician says, "I believe that
every stomach, not actually impaired by organic disease, will perform
its functions, if it receives reasonable attention; and when we perceive
the manner in which diet is generally conducted, both in regard to
_quantity_ and _variety_ of articles of food and drink, which are mixed
up in one heterogeneous mass,--instead of being astonished at the
prevalence of indigestion, our wonder must rather be, that, in such
circumstances, any stomach is capable of digesting at all."

In regard to articles which are the most easily digested, only general
rules can be given. Tender meats are digested more readily than those
which are tough, or than many kinds of vegetable food. The farinaceous
articles, such as rice, flour, corn, potatoes, and the like, are the
most nutritious, and most easily digested. The popular notion, that meat
is more nourishing than bread, is a great mistake. Good bread contains
one third more nourishment than butcher's meat. The meat is more
_stimulating_, and for this reason is more readily digested. A perfectly
healthy stomach can digest almost any healthful food; but when the
digestive powers are weak, every stomach has its peculiarities, and what
is good for one, is hurtful to another. In such cases, experiment,
alone, can decide, which are the most digestible articles of food. A
person, whose food troubles him, must deduct one article after another,
till he learns, by experience, which is the best for digestion. Much
evil has been done, by assuming that the powers of one stomach are to be
made the rule in regulating every other.

The most unhealthful kinds of food, are those, which are made so by bad
cooking; such as sour and heavy bread, cakes, pie-crust, and other
dishes consisting of fat, mixed and cooked with flour; also rancid
butter, and high-seasoned food. The fewer mixtures there are in cooking,
the more healthful is the food likely to be.

There is one caution, as to the _mode_ of eating, which seems peculiarly
needful to Americans. It is indispensable to good digestion, that food
be well chewed and taken slowly. It needs to be thoroughly chewed, in
order to prepare it for the action of the gastric juice, which, by the
_peristaltic motion_, will be thus brought into universal contact with
the minute portions. It has been found, that a solid lump of food
requires much more time and labor of the stomach, than divided
substances. It has also been found, that, as each bolus, or mouthful,
enters the stomach, the latter closes, until the portion received has
had some time to move around and combine with the gastric juice; and
that the orifice of the stomach resists the entrance of any more, till
this is accomplished. But, if the eater persists in swallowing fast, the
stomach yields; the food is then poured in more rapidly than the organ
can perform its duty of digestion; and evil results are sooner or later
developed. This exhibits the folly of those hasty meals, so common to
travellers, and to men of business, and shows why children should be
taught to eat slowly.

After taking a full meal, it is very important to health, that no great
bodily or mental exertion be made, till the labor of the stomach is
over. Intense mental effort draws the blood to the head, and muscular
exertions draw it to the muscles; and in consequence of this, the
stomach loses the supply which it requires when performing its office.
When the blood is thus withdrawn, the adequate supply of gastric juice
is not afforded, and indigestion is the result. The heaviness which
follows a full meal, is the indication which Nature gives of the need of
quiet. When the meal is moderate, a sufficient quantity of gastric juice
is exuded in an hour, or an hour and a half; after which, labor of body
and mind may safely be resumed.

When undigested food remains in the stomach, and is at last thrown out
into the bowels, it proves an irritating substance, producing an
inflamed state in the lining of the stomach and other organs. The same
effect is produced by alcoholic drinks.

It is found, that the stomach has the power of gradually accommodating
its digestive powers to the food it habitually receives. Thus, animals,
which live on vegetables, can gradually become accustomed to animal
food; and the reverse is equally true. Thus, too, the human stomach can
eventually accomplish the digestion of some kinds of food, which, at
first, were indigestible.

But any changes of this sort should be gradual; as those which are
_sudden_, are trying to the powers of the stomach, by furnishing matter
for which its gastric juice is not prepared.

In regard to the nature of the meals prepared, the breakfast should
furnish a supply of liquids, because the body has been exhausted by the
exhalations of the night, and demands them more than at any other
period. It should not be the heartiest meal, because the organs of
digestion are weakened by long fasting, and the exhalations. Dinner
should be the heartiest meal, because then the powers of digestion are
strengthened, by the supplies of the morning meal. Light and amusing
employments should occupy mind and body for an hour or more after a full

But little drink should be taken, while eating, as it dilutes the
gastric juice which is apportioned to each quantity of food as it enters
the stomach. It is better to take drink after the meal is past.

Extremes of heat or cold are injurious to the process of digestion.
Taking hot food or drink, habitually, tends to debilitate all the organs
thus needlessly excited. In using cold substances, it is found that a
certain degree of warmth in the stomach is indispensable to their
digestion; so that, when the gastric juice is cooled below this
temperature, it ceases to act. Indulging in large quantities of cold
drinks, or eating ice-creams, after a meal, tends to reduce the
temperature of the stomach, and thus to stop digestion. This shows the
folly of those refreshments, in convivial meetings, where the guests are
tempted to load the stomach with a variety, such as would require the
stomach of a stout farmer to digest, and then to wind up with
ice-creams, thus destroying whatever ability might otherwise have
existed, to digest the heavy load. The fittest temperature for drinks,
if taken when the food is in the digesting process, is blood heat. Cool
drinks, and even ice, can be safely taken at other times, if not in
excessive quantity. When the thirst is excessive, or the body weakened
by fatigue, or when in a state of perspiration, cold drinks are
injurious. When the body is perspiring freely, taking a large quantity
of cold drink has often produced instant death.

Fluids taken into the stomach are not subject to the slow process of
digestion, but are immediately absorbed and carried into the blood. This
is the reason why drink, more speedily than food, restores from
exhaustion. The minute vessels of the stomach inhale or absorb its
fluids, which are carried into the blood, just as the minute extremities
of the arteries open upon the inner surface of the stomach, and there
exude the gastric juice from the blood.

When food is chiefly liquid, (soup, for example,) the fluid part is
rapidly absorbed. The solid parts remain, to be acted on by the gastric
juice. In the case of St. Martin,[F] in fifty minutes after taking soup,
the fluids were absorbed, and the remainder was even thicker than is
usual after eating solid food. This is the reason why soups are deemed
bad for weak stomachs; as this residuum is more difficult of digestion
than ordinary food. In recovering from sickness, beef-tea and broths are
good, because the system then demands fluids to supply its loss of

Highly-concentrated food, having much nourishment in a small bulk, is
not favorable to digestion, because it cannot be properly acted on by
the muscular contractions of the stomach, and is not so minutely
divided, as to enable the gastric juice to act properly. This is the
reason, why a certain _bulk_ of food is needful to good digestion; and
why those people, who live on whale oil, and other highly-nourishing
food, in cold climates, mix vegetables and even sawdust with it, to make
it more acceptable and digestible. So, in civilized lands, bread,
potatoes, and vegetables, are mixed with more highly-concentrated
nourishment. This explains why coarse bread, of unbolted wheat, so often
proves beneficial. Where, from inactive habits, or other causes, the
bowels become constipated and sluggish, this kind of food proves the
appropriate remedy. One fact on this subject is worthy of notice. Under
the administration of William Pitt, for two years or more, there was
such a scarcity of wheat, that, to make it hold out longer, Parliament
passed a law, that the army should have all their bread made of unbolted
flour. The result was, that the health of the soldiers improved so much,
as to be a subject of surprise to themselves, the officers, and the
physicians. These last came out publicly, and declared, that the
soldiers never before were so robust and healthy; and that disease had
nearly disappeared from the army. The civic physicians joined and
pronounced it the healthiest bread; and, for a time, schools, families,
and public institutions, used it almost exclusively. Even the nobility,
convinced by these facts, adopted it for their common diet; and the
fashion continued a long time after the scarcity ceased, until more
luxurious habits resumed their sway. For this reason, also, soups,
gellies, and arrow-root, should have bread or crackers mixed with them.
We thus see why children should not have cakes and candies allowed them
between meals. These are highly-concentrated nourishments, and should be
eaten with more bulky and less nourishing substances. The most
indigestible of all kinds of food, are fatty and oily substances;
especially if heated. It is on this account, that pie-crust, and
articles boiled and fried in fat or butter, are deemed not so healthful
as other food.

The following, then, may be put down as the causes of a debilitated
constitution, from the misuse of food. Eating _too much_, eating _too
often_, eating _too fast_, eating food and condiments that are _too
stimulating_, eating food that is _too warm_ or _too cold_, eating food
that is _highly-concentrated_, without a proper admixture of less
nourishing matter, and eating food that is _difficult of digestion_.


[F] The individual here referred to,--Alexis St. Martin,--was a young
Canadian, of eighteen years of age, of a good constitution, and robust
health, who, in 1822, was accidentally wounded by the discharge of a
musket, which carried away a part of the ribs, lacerated one of the
lobes of the lungs, and perforated the stomach, making a large aperture,
which never closed; and which enabled Dr. Beaumont, (a surgeon of the
American army, stationed at Michilimackinac, under whose care the
patient was placed,) to witness all the processes of digestion and other
functions of the body, for several years. The published account of the
experiments made by Dr. B., is highly interesting and instructive.



Although intemperance in eating is probably the most prolific cause of
the diseases of mankind, intemperance in drink has produced more guilt,
misery, and crime, than any other one cause. And the responsibilities of
a woman, in this particular, are very great; for the habits and
liabilities of those under her care, will very much depend on her
opinions and practice.

It is a point fully established by experience, that the full
developement of the human body, and the vigorous exercise of all its
functions, can be secured without the use of stimulating drinks. It is,
therefore, perfectly safe, to bring up children never to use them; no
hazard being incurred, by such a course.

It is also found, by experience, that there are two evils incurred, by
the use of stimulating drinks. The first, is, their positive effect on
the human system. Their peculiarity consists in so exciting the nervous
system, that all the functions of the body are accelerated, and the
fluids are caused to move quicker than at their natural speed. This
increased motion of the animal fluids, always produces an agreeable
effect on the mind. The intellect is invigorated, the imagination is
excited, the spirits are enlivened; and these effects are so agreeable,
that all mankind, after having once experienced them, feel a great
desire for their repetition.

But this temporary invigoration of the system, is always followed by a
diminution of the powers of the stimulated organs; so that, though in
all cases this reaction may not be perceptible, it is invariably the
result. It may be set down as the unchangeable rule of physiology, that
stimulating drinks (except in cases of disease) deduct from the powers
of the constitution, in exactly the proportion in which they operate to
produce temporary invigoration.

The second evil, is, the temptation which always attends the use of
stimulants. Their effect on the system is so agreeable, and the evils
resulting are so imperceptible and distant, that there is a constant
tendency to increase such excitement, both in frequency and power. And
the more the system is thus reduced in strength, the more craving is the
desire for that which imparts a temporary invigoration. This process of
increasing debility and increasing craving for the stimulus that removes
it, often goes to such an extreme, that the passion is perfectly
uncontrollable, and mind and body perish under this baleful habit.

In this Country, there are five forms in which the use of such
stimulants is common; namely, _alcoholic drinks_, _tea_, _coffee_,
_opium mixtures_, and _tobacco_. These are all alike, in the main
peculiarity of imparting that extra stimulus to the system, which tends
to exhaust its powers.

Multitudes in this Nation are in the habitual use of some one of these
stimulants; and each person defends the indulgence by these arguments:

First, that the desire for stimulants is a natural propensity, implanted
in man's nature, as is manifest from the universal tendency to such
indulgences, in every nation. From this, it is inferred, that it is an
innocent desire, which ought to be gratified, to some extent, and that
the aim should be, to keep it within the limits of temperance, instead
of attempting to exterminate a natural propensity.

This is an argument, which, if true, makes it equally proper to use
opium, brandy, tea, or tobacco, as stimulating principles, provided they
are used temperately. But, if it be granted that perfect health and
strength can be gained and secured without these stimulants, and that
their peculiar effect is to diminish the power of the system, in exactly
the same proportion as they stimulate it, then there is no such thing as
a temperate use, unless they are so diluted, as to destroy any
stimulating power; and in this form, they are seldom desired.

The other argument for their use, is, that they are among the good
things provided by the Creator, for our gratification; that, like all
other blessings, they are exposed to abuse and excess; and that we
should rather seek to regulate their use, than to banish them entirely.

This argument is based on the assumption, that they are, like healthful
foods and drinks, necessary to life and health, and injurious only by
excess. But this is not true; for, whenever they are used in any such
strength as to be a gratification, they operate, to a greater or less
extent, as stimulants; and, to just such extent, they wear out the
powers of the constitution; and it is abundantly proved, that they are
not, like food and drink, necessary to health. Such articles are
designed for medicine, and not for common use. There can be no argument
framed to defend the use of one of them, which will not equally defend
all. That men have a love for being stimulated, after they have once
felt the pleasurable excitement, and that Providence has provided the
means for securing it, are arguments as much in favor of alcohol, opium,
and tobacco, as of coffee and tea. All that can be said in favor of the
last-mentioned favorite beverages, is, that the danger in their use is
not so great. Let any one, who defends one kind of stimulating drink,
remember, then, that he uses an argument, which, if it be allowed that
stimulants are not needed, and are injurious, will equally defend all
kinds; and that all which can be said in defence of tea and coffee, is,
that they _may_ be used, so weak, as to do no harm, and that they
actually have done less harm than some of the other stimulating

The writer is of opinion, that tea and coffee are a most extensive cause
of much of the nervous debility and suffering endured by American women;
and that relinquishing such drinks would save an immense amount of such
suffering. But there is little probability that the present generation
will make so decided a change in their habits, as to give up these
beverages; and the subject is presented rather in reference to forming
the habits of children.

It is a fact, that tea and coffee are, at first, seldom or never
agreeable to children. It is the mixture of milk, sugar, and water, that
reconciles them to a taste, which in this manner gradually becomes
agreeable. Now, suppose that those who provide for a family conclude
that it is not _their_ duty to give up entirely the use of stimulating
drinks, may not the case appear different, in regard to teaching their
children to love such drinks? Let the matter be regarded thus:--The
experiments of physiologists all prove, that stimulants are not needful
to health, and that, as the general rule, they tend to debilitate the
constitution. Is it right, then, for a parent to tempt a child to drink
what is not needful, when there is a probability that it will prove, to
some extent, an undermining drain on the constitution? Some
constitutions can bear much less excitement than others; and, in every
family of children, there is usually one, or more, of delicate
organization, and consequently peculiarly exposed to dangers from this
source. It is this child who ordinarily becomes the victim to
stimulating drinks. The tea and coffee which the parents and the
healthier children can use without immediate injury, gradually sap the
energies of the feebler child, who proves either an early victim, or a
living martyr to all the sufferings that debilitated nerves inflict. Can
it be right, to lead children, where all allow that there is some
danger, and where, in many cases, disease and death are met, when
another path is known to be perfectly safe?

Of the stimulating drinks in common use, _black tea_ is least injurious,
because its flavor is so strong, in comparison with its narcotic
principle, that one who uses it, is much less liable to excess. Children
can be trained to love milk and water sweetened with sugar, so that it
will always be a pleasant beverage; or, if there are exceptions to the
rule, they will be few. Water is an unfailing resort. Every one loves
it, and it is perfectly healthful.

The impression, common in this Country, that _warm drinks_, especially
in Winter, are more healthful than cold, is not warranted by any
experience, nor by the laws of the physical system. At dinner, cold
drinks are universal, and no one deems them injurious. It is only at the
other two meals that they are supposed to be hurtful.

There is no doubt that _warm_ drinks are healthful, and more agreeable
than cold, at certain times and seasons; but it is equally true, that
drinks above blood heat are not healthful. If any person should hold a
finger in hot water, for a considerable time, twice every day, it would
be found that the finger would gradually grow weaker. The frequent
application of the stimulus of heat, like all other stimulants,
eventually causes debility. If, therefore, a person is in the habit of
drinking hot drinks, twice a day, the teeth, throat, and stomach are
gradually debilitated. This, most probably, is one of the causes of an
early decay of the teeth, which is observed to be much more common among
American ladies, than among those in European countries.

It has been stated to the writer, by an intelligent traveller, who had
visited Mexico, that it was rare to meet an individual with even a
tolerable set of teeth; and that almost every grown person, he met in
the street, had merely remnants of teeth. On inquiry into the customs
of the Country, it was found, that it was the universal practice to take
their usual beverage at almost the boiling point; and this, doubtless,
was the chief cause of the almost entire want of teeth in that Country.
In the United States, it cannot be doubted that much evil is done, in
this way, by hot drinks. Most tea-drinkers consider tea as ruined, if it
stands until it reaches the healthful temperature for drink.

The following extract from Dr. Andrew Combe, presents the opinion of
most intelligent medical men on this subject.[G]

"_Water_ is a safe drink for all constitutions, provided it be resorted
to in obedience to the dictates of natural thirst, only, and not of
habit. Unless the desire for it is felt, there is no occasion for its
use during a meal."

"The primary effect of all distilled and fermented liquors, is, to
_stimulate the nervous system and quicken the circulation_. In infancy
and childhood, the circulation is rapid, and easily excited; and the
nervous system is strongly acted upon, even by the slightest external
impressions. Hence slight causes of irritation readily excite febrile
and convulsive disorders. In youth, the natural tendency of the
constitution is still to excitement; and consequently, as a general
rule, the stimulus of fermented liquors is injurious."

These remarks show, that parents, who find that stimulating drinks are
not injurious to themselves, may mistake in inferring, from this, that
they will not be injurious to their children.

Dr. Combe continues thus: "In mature age, when digestion is good and the
system in full vigor, if the mode of life be not too exhausting, the
nervous functions and general circulation are in their best condition,
and require no stimulus for their support. The bodily energy is then
easily sustained, by nutritious food and a regular regimen, and
consequently artificial excitement only increases the wasting of the
natural strength. In old age, when the powers of life begin to fail,
moderate stimulus may be used with evident advantage."

It may be asked, in this connection, why the stimulus of animal food is
not to be regarded in the same light, as that of stimulating drinks. In
reply, a very essential difference may be pointed out. Animal food
furnishes nutriment to the organs which it stimulates, but stimulating
drinks excite the organs to quickened action, without affording any

It has been supposed, by some, that tea and coffee have, at least, a
degree of nourishing power. But it is proved, that it is the milk and
sugar, and not the main portion of the drink, which imparts the
nourishment. Tea has not one particle of nourishing properties; and what
little exists in the coffee-berry, is lost by roasting it in the usual
mode. All that these articles do, is simply _to stimulate, without

It is very common, especially in schools, for children to form a habit
of drinking freely of cold water. This is a debilitating habit, and
should be corrected. Very often, chewing a bit of cracker will stop a
craving for drink, better than taking water; and when teachers are
troubled with very thirsty scholars, they should direct them to this
remedy. A person who exercises but little, requires no drink, between
meals, for health; and the craving for it is unhealthful. Spices, wines,
fermented liquors, and all stimulating condiments, produce unhealthful


[G] The writer would here remark, in reference to extracts made from
various authors, that, for the sake of abridging, she has often left out
parts of a paragraph, but never so as to modify the meaning of the
author. Some ideas, not connected with the subject in hand, are omitted,
but none are altered.



It appears, by calculations made from bills of mortality, that one
quarter of the human race perishes in infancy. This is a fact not in
accordance with the analogy of Nature. No such mortality prevails among
the young of animals; it does not appear to be the design of the
Creator; and it must be owing to causes which can be removed. Medical
men agree in the opinion, that a great portion of this mortality, is
owing to mismanagement, in reference to fresh air, food, and clothing.

At birth, the circulation is chiefly in the vessels of the skin; for the
liver and stomach, being feeble in action, demand less blood, and it
resorts to the surface. If, therefore, an infant be exposed to cold, the
blood is driven inward, by the contracting of the blood-vessels in the
skin: and, the internal organs being thus over-stimulated, bowel
complaints, croup, convulsions, or some other evil, ensues. This shows
the sad mistake of parents, who plunge infants in cold water to
strengthen their constitution; and teaches, that infants should be
washed in warm water, and in a warm room. Some have constitutions strong
enough to bear mismanagement in these respects; but many fail in
consequence of it.

Hence we see the importance of dressing infants warmly, and protecting
them from exposure to a cold temperature. It is for this purpose, that
mothers, now, very generally, cover the arms and necks of infants,
especially in Winter. Fathers and mothers, if they were obliged to go
with bare arms and necks, even in moderate weather, would often shiver
with cold; and yet they have a power of constitution which would subject
them to far less hazard and discomfort, than a delicate infant must
experience from a similar exposure. This mode of dressing infants, with
bare necks and arms, has arisen from the common impression, that they
have a power of resisting cold superior to older persons. This is a
mistake; for the experiments of medical men have established the fact,
that the power of producing heat is least in the period of infancy.

Extensive investigations have been made in France, in reference to this
point. It is there required, in some districts, that every infant, at
birth, be carried to the office of the _maire_, [_mayor_,] to be
registered. It is found, in these districts, that the deaths of
newly-born infants, are much more numerous in the cold, than in the
warm, months; and that a much greater proportion of such deaths occurs
among those who reside at a distance from the office of the _maire_,
than among those in its vicinity. This proves, that exposure to cold has
much to do with the continuance of infant life.

But it is as dangerous to go to the other extreme, and keep the body too
warm. The skin, when kept at too high a temperature, is relaxed and
weakened by too profuse perspiration, and becomes more sensitive, and
more readily affected by every change of temperature. This increases the
liabilities to sudden colds; and it frequently happens, that the
children, who are most carefully guarded from cold, are the ones most
liable to take sudden and dangerous chills. The reason is, that, by the
too great accumulation of clothing, the skin is too much excited, and
the blood is withdrawn from the internal organs, thus weakening them,
while the skin itself is debilitated by the same process.

The rule of safety, is, so to cover the body, as to keep it entirely
warm, but not so as to induce perspiration in any part. The perspiration
induced by exercise is healthful, because it increases the appetite; but
the perspiration produced by excess of clothing is debilitating. This
shows the importance of adjusting beds and their covering to the season.
Featherbeds are unhealthful in warm weather, because they induce
perspiration; and in all cases, those, who have the care of children,
should proportion their covering by night to the season of the year.
Infants and children should never be so clothed, as either to feel
chilly, or to induce perspiration.

The greatest trouble, in this respect, to those who have the care of
children, is owing to their throwing off their covering in the night.
The best guard, against such exposures, is a nightgown, of the warmest
and thickest flannel, made like pantaloons at the lower part, and the
legs long, so that they can be tied over the feet. This makes less
covering needful, and saves the child from excessive cold when it is
thrown off.

The clothing ought always to be proportioned to the constitution and
habits. A person of strong constitution, who takes much exercise, needs
less clothing than one of delicate and sedentary habits. According to
this rule, women need much thicker and warmer clothing, when they go
out, than men. But how different are our customs, from what sound wisdom
dictates! Women go out with thin stockings, thin shoes, and open necks,
when men are protected by thick woollen hose and boots, and their whole
body encased in many folds of flannel and broadcloth.

Flannel, worn next the skin, is useful, for several reasons. It is a bad
conductor of heat, so that it protects the body from _sudden_ chills
when in a state of perspiration. It also produces a kind of friction on
the skin, which aids it in its functions, while its texture, being
loose, enables it to receive and retain much matter, thrown off from the
body, which would otherwise accumulate on its surface. This is the
reason, why medical men direct, that young children wear flannel next
the body, and woollen hose, the first two years of life. They are thus
protected from sudden exposures. For the same reason, laboring men
should thus wear flannels, which are also considered as preservatives
from infection, in unhealthy atmospheres. They give a healthy action to
the skin, and thus enable it to resist the operation of unhealthy
miasms. On this account, persons residing in a new country should wear
such clothing next the skin, to guard them from the noxious miasms
caused by extensive vegetable decompositions. It is stated, that the
fatal influence of the malaria, or noxious exhalations around Rome, has
been much diminished by this practice. But those who thus wear flannel,
through the day, ought to take it off, at night, when it is not needed.
It should be hung so that it can be well aired, during the night.

But the practice, by which females probably suffer most, is, the use of
_tight dresses_. Much has been said against the use of corsets by
ladies. But these may be worn with perfect safety, and be left off, and
still injury, such as they often produce, be equally felt. It is the
_constriction_ of dress, that is to be feared, and not any particular
article that produces it. A frock, or a belt, may be so tight, as to be
even worse than a corset, which would more equally divide the

So long as it is the fashion to admire, as models of elegance, the
wasp-like figures which are presented at the rooms of mantuamakers and
milliners, there will be hundreds of foolish women, who will risk their
lives and health to secure some resemblance to these deformities of the
human frame. But it is believed, that all sensible women, when they
fairly understand the evils which result from tight dressing, and learn
the _real_ model of taste and beauty for a perfect female form, will
never risk their own health, or the health of their daughters, in
efforts to secure one which is as much at variance with good taste, as
it is with good health.

Such female figures as our print-shops present, are made, not by the
hand of the Author of all grace and beauty, but by the murderous
contrivances of the corset-shop; and the more a woman learns the true
rules of grace and beauty for the female form, the more her taste will
revolt from such ridiculous distortions. The folly of the Chinese belle,
who totters on two useless deformities, is nothing, compared to that of
the American belle, who impedes all the internal organs in the discharge
of their functions, that she may have a slender waist.

It was shown, in the article on the bones and muscles, that exercise was
indispensable to their growth and strength. If any muscles are left
unemployed, they diminish in size and strength. The girding of tight
dresses operates thus on the muscles of the body. If an article, like
corsets, is made to hold up the body, then those muscles, which are
designed for this purpose, are released from duty, and grow weak; so
that, after this has been continued for some time, leaving off the
unnatural support produces a feeling of weakness. Thus a person will
complain of feeling so weak and unsupported, without corsets, as to be
uncomfortable. This is entirely owing to the disuse of those muscles,
which corsets throw out of employ.

Another effect of tight dress, is, to stop or impede the office of the
lungs. Unless the chest can expand, fully, and with perfect ease, a
portion of the lungs is not filled with air, and thus the full
purification of the blood is prevented. This movement of the lungs, when
they are fully inflated, increases the peristaltic movement of the
stomach and bowels, and promotes digestion; any constriction of the
waist tends to impede this important operation, and indigestion, with
all its attendant evils, is often the result.

The rule of safety, in regard to the tightness of dress, is this. Every
person should be dressed so loosely, that, _when sitting in the posture
used in sewing, reading, or study_ THE LUNGS _can be as fully
and as easily inflated, as they are without clothing_. Many a woman
thinks she dresses loosely, because, when she stands up, her clothing
does not confine her chest. This is not a fair test. It is in the
position most used when engaged in common employments, that we are to
judge of the constriction of dress. Let every woman, then, bear in mind,
that, just so long as her dress and position oppose any resistance to
the motion of her chest, in just such proportion her blood is
unpurified, and her vital organs are debilitated.

The English ladies set our countrywomen a good example, in accommodating
their dress to times and seasons. The richest and noblest among them
wear warm cotton hose and thick shoes, when they walk for exercise; and
would deem it vulgar to appear, as many of our ladies do, with thin hose
and shoes, in damp or cold weather. Any mode of dress, not suited to the
employment, the age, the season, or the means of the wearer, is in bad



The importance of cleanliness, in person and dress, can never be fully
realized, by persons who are ignorant of the construction of the skin,
and of the influence which its treatment has on the health of the body.
Persons deficient in such knowledge, frequently sneer at what they deem
the foolish and fidgety particularity of others, whose frequent
ablutions and changes of clothing, exceed their own measure of

The popular maxim, that "dirt is healthy," has probably arisen from the
fact, that playing in the open air is very beneficial to the health of
children, who thus get dirt on their persons and clothes. But it is the
fresh air and exercise, and not the dirt, which promotes the health.

In a previous article, it was shown, that the lungs, bowels, kidneys,
and skin, were the organs employed in throwing off those waste and
noxious parts of the food not employed in nourishing the body. Of this,
the skin has the largest duty to perform; throwing off, at least, twenty
ounces every twenty-four hours, by means of insensible perspiration.
When exercise sets the blood in quicker motion, it ministers its
supplies faster, and there is consequently a greater residuum to be
thrown off by the skin; and then the perspiration becomes so abundant as
to be perceptible. In this state, if a sudden chill take place, the
blood-vessels of the skin contract, the blood is driven from the
surface, and the internal organs are taxed with a double duty. If the
constitution be a strong one, these organs march on and perform the
labor exacted. But if any of these organs be debilitated, the weakest
one generally gives way, and some disease ensues.

One of the most frequent illustrations of this reciprocated action, is
afforded by a convivial meeting in cold weather. The heat of the room,
the food, and the excitement, quicken the circulation, and perspiration
is evolved. When the company passes into the cold air, a sudden
revulsion takes place. The increased circulation continues, for some
time after; but the skin being cooled, the blood retreats, and the
internal organs are obliged to perform the duties of the skin as well as
their own. Then, in case the lungs are the weakest organ, the mucous
secretion becomes excessive; so that it would fill up the cells, and
stop the breathing, were it not for the spasmodic effort called
coughing, by which this substance is thrown out. In case the nerves are
the weakest part of the system, such an exposure would result in pains
in the head or teeth, or in some other nervous ailment. If the muscles
be the weakest part, rheumatic affections will ensue; and if the bowels
or kidneys be weakest, some disorder in their functions will result.

But it is found, that the closing of the pores of the skin with other
substances, tends to a similar result on the internal organs. In this
situation, the skin is unable perfectly to perform its functions, and
either the blood remains to a certain extent unpurified, or else the
internal organs have an unnatural duty to perform. Either of these
results tends to produce disease, and the gradual decay of the vital

Moreover, it has been shown, that the skin has the power of absorbing
into the blood particles retained on its surface. In consequence of
these peculiarities, the skin of the whole body needs to be washed,
every day. This process removes from the pores the matter exhaled from
the blood, and also that collected from the atmosphere and other bodies.
If this process be not often performed, the pores of the skin fill up
with the redundant matter expelled, and being pressed, by the clothing,
to the surface of the body, the skin is both interrupted in its exhaling
process, and its absorbents take back into the system portions of the
noxious matter. Thus the blood is not relieved to the extent designed,
while it receives back noxious particles, which are thus carried to the
lungs, liver, and every part of the system.

This is the reason why the articles worn next to the skin should often
be changed; and why it is recommended that persons should not sleep in
the article they wear next the skin through the day. The alternate
change and airing of the articles worn next the body by day or night, is
a practice very favorable to the health of the skin. The fresh air has
the power of removing much of the noxious effluvia received from the
body by the clothing. It is with reference to this, that on leaving a
bed, its covering should be thrown open and exposed to the fresh air.

The benefit arising from a proper care of the skin, is the reason why
bathing has been so extensively practised by civilized nations. The
Greeks and Romans considered bathing as indispensable to daily comfort,
as much so, as their meals; and public baths were provided for all
classes. In European countries, this practice is very prevalent, but
there is no civilized nation which pays so little regard to the rules of
health, on this subject, as our own. To wash the face, feet, hands, and
neck, is the extent of the ablutions practised by perhaps the majority
of our people.

In regard to the use of the bath, there is need of some information, in
order to prevent danger from its misuse. Persons in good health, and
with strong constitutions, can use the cold bath, and the shower-bath,
with entire safety and benefit. But if the constitution be feeble, cold
bathing is injurious. If it is useful, it can be known by an invigorated
feeling, and a warm glow on the skin; but if, instead of this, there be
a feeling of debility, and the hands and feet become cold, it is a
certain sign, that this kind of bathing is injurious. A bath at
ninety-five degrees of Fahrenheit, is about the right temperature. A
bath, blood warm, or a little cooler than the skin, is safe for all
constitutions, if not protracted over half an hour. After bathing, the
body should be rubbed with a brush or coarse towel, to remove the light
scales of scarfskin, which adhere to it, and also to promote a healthful

A bath should never be taken, till three hours after eating, as it
interrupts the process of digestion, by withdrawing the blood from the
stomach to the surface. Neither should it be taken, when the body is
weary with exercise, nor be immediately followed by severe exercise.
Many suppose that a warm bath exposes a person more readily to take
cold; and that it tends to debilitate the system. This is not the case,
unless it be protracted too long. If it be used so as to cleanse the
skin, and give it a gentle stimulus, it is better able to resist cold
than before the process. This is the reason why the Swedes and Russians
can rush, reeking, out of their steam baths, and throw themselves into
the snow, and not only escape injury, but feel invigorated. It is for a
similar reason, that we suffer less in going into the cold, from a warm
room, with our body entirely warm, than when we go out somewhat chilled.
When the skin is warm, the circulation is active on the surface, and the
cold does not so reduce its temperature, but that increased exercise
will keep up its warmth.

When families have no bathing establishment, every member should wash
the whole person, on rising or going to bed, either in cold or warm
water, according to the constitution. It is especially important, that
children have the perspiration and other impurities, which their
exercise and sports have occasioned, removed from their skin before
going to bed. The hours of sleep are those when the body most freely
exhales the waste matter of the system, and all the pores should be
properly freed from impediments to this healthful operation. For this
purpose, a large tin wash-pan should be kept for children, just large
enough, at bottom, for them to stand in, and flaring outward, so as to
be very broad at top. A child can then be placed in it, standing, and
washed with a sponge, without wetting the floor. Being small at bottom,
it is better than a tub; it is not only smaller, but lighter, and
requires less water.

These remarks indicate the wisdom of those parents, who habitually wash
their children, all over, before they go to bed. The chance of life and
health, to such children, is greatly increased by this practice; and no
doubt much of the suffering of childhood, from cutaneous eruptions, weak
eyes, earache, colds, and fevers, is owing to a neglect of the skin.

The care of the teeth should be made habitual to children, not merely as
promoting an agreeable appearance, but as a needful preservative. The
saliva contains tartar, an earthy substance, which is deposited on the
teeth, and destroys both their beauty and health. This can be prevented,
by the use of the brush, night and morning. But, if this be neglected,
the deposite becomes hard, and can be removed only by the dentist. If
suffered to remain, it tends to destroy the health of the gums; they
gradually decay, and thus the roots of the teeth become bare, and they
often drop out.

When children are shedding their first set of teeth, care should be
taken, to remove them as soon as they become loose; otherwise the new
teeth will grow awry. When persons have defective teeth, they can often
be saved, by having them filled by a dentist. This also will frequently
prevent the toothache.

Children should be taught to take proper care of their nails. Long and
dirty nails have a disagreeable appearance. When children wash, in the
morning, they should be supplied with an instrument to clean the nails,
and be required to use it.



There is no practice, which has been more extensively eulogized, in all
ages, than early rising; and this universal impression, is an indication
that it is founded on true philosophy. For, it is rarely the case, that
the common sense of mankind fastens on a practice, as really beneficial,
especially one that demands self-denial, without some substantial

This practice, which may justly be called a domestic virtue, is one,
which has a peculiar claim to be styled American and democratic. The
distinctive mark of aristocratic nations, is, a disregard of the great
mass, and a disproportionate regard for the interests of certain
privileged orders. All the customs and habits of such a nation, are, to
a greater or less extent, regulated by this principle. Now the mass of
any nation must always consist of persons who labor at occupations which
demand the light of day. But in aristocratic countries, especially in
England, labor is regarded as the mark of the lower classes, and
indolence is considered as one mark of a gentleman. This impression has
gradually and imperceptibly, to a great extent, regulated their customs,
so that, even in their hours of meals and repose, the higher orders aim
at being different and distinct from those, who, by laborious pursuits,
are placed below them. From this circumstance, while the lower orders
labor by day, and sleep at night, the rich, the noble, and the honored,
sleep by day, and follow their pursuits and pleasures by night. It will
be found, that the aristocracy of London breakfast near mid-day, dine
after dark, visit and go to Parliament between ten and twelve at night,
and retire to sleep towards morning. In consequence of this, the
subordinate classes, who aim at gentility, gradually fall into the same
practice. The influence of this custom extends across the ocean, and
here, in this democratic land, we find many, who measure their grade of
gentility by the late hour at which they arrive at a party. And this
aristocratic tendency is growing upon us, so that, throughout the
Nation, the hours for visiting and retiring are constantly becoming
later, while the hours for rising correspond in lateness.

The question, then, is one which appeals to American women, as a matter
of patriotism; as having a bearing on those great principles of
democracy, which we conceive to be equally the principles of
Christianity. Shall we form our customs on the principle that labor is
degrading, and indolence genteel? Shall we assume, by our practice, that
the interests of the great mass are to be sacrificed for the pleasures
and honors of a privileged few? Shall we ape the customs of aristocratic
lands, in those very practices which result from principles and
institutions that we condemn? Shall we not rather take the place to
which we are entitled, as the leaders, rather than the followers, in the
customs of society, turn back the tide of aristocratic inroads, and
carry through the whole, not only of civil and political, but of social
and domestic, life, the true principles of democratic freedom and
equality? The following considerations may serve to strengthen an
affirmative decision.

The first, relates to the health of a family. It is a universal law of
physiology, that all living things flourish best in the light.
Vegetables, in a dark cellar, grow pale and spindling,[H] and children,
brought up in mines, are wan and stinted. This universal law, indicates
the folly of turning day into night, thus losing the genial influence,
which the light of day produces on all animated creation.

There is another phenomenon in the physiology of Nature, which equally
condemns this practice. It has been shown, that the purification of the
blood, in the lungs, is secured, by the oxygen of the atmosphere
absorbing its carbon and hydrogen. This combination forms carbonic acid
and water, which are expired from our lungs into the atmosphere. Now all
the vegetable world undergoes a similar process. In the light of day,
all the leaves of vegetables absorb carbon and expire oxygen, thus
supplying the air with its vital principle, and withdrawing the more
deleterious element. But, when the light is withdrawn, this process is
reversed, and all vegetables exhale carbonic acid, and inspire the
oxygen of the air. Thus it appears, that the atmosphere of day is much
more healthful than that of the night, especially out of doors.

Moreover, when the body is fatigued, it is much more liable to
deleterious influences, from noxious particles in the atmosphere, which
may be absorbed by the skin or the lungs. In consequence of this, the
last hours of daily labor are more likely to be those of risk,
especially to delicate constitutions. This is a proper reason for
retiring to the house and to slumber, at an early hour, that the body
may not be exposed to the most risk, when, after the exertions of the
day, it is least able to bear it.

The observations of medical men, whose inquiries have been directed to
this point, have decided, that from six to eight hours, is the amount of
sleep demanded by persons in health. Some constitutions require as much
as eight, and others no more than six, hours of repose. But eight hours
is the maximum for all persons in ordinary health, with ordinary
occupations. In cases of extra physical exertions, or the debility of
disease, or a decayed constitution, more than this is required. Let
eight hours, then, be regarded as the ordinary period required for
sleep, by an industrious people, like the Americans. According to this,
the practice of rising between four and five, and retiring between nine
and ten, in Summer, would secure most of the sunlight, and expose us the
least to that period of the atmosphere, when it is most noxious. In
Winter, the night air is less deleterious, because the frost binds
noxious exhalations, and vegetation ceases its inspiring and expiring
process; and, moreover, as the constitution is more tried, in cold, than
in warm, weather, and as in cold weather the body exhales less during
the hours of sleep, it is not so injurious to protract our slumbers
beyond the proper period, as it is in the warm months. But in Winter, it
is best for grown persons, in health, to rise as soon as they can see to
dress, and retire so as not to allow more than eight hours for sleep.

It thus appears, that the laws of our political condition, the laws of
the natural world, and the constitution of our bodies, alike demand that
we rise with the light of day to prosecute our employments, and that we
retire within doors, when this light is withdrawn.

In regard to the effects of protracting the time spent in repose, many
extensive and satisfactory investigations have been made. It has been
shown, that, during sleep, the body perspires most freely, while yet
neither food nor exercise are ministering to its wants. Of course, if we
continue our slumbers, beyond the time required to restore the body to
its usual vigor, there is an unperceived undermining of the
constitution, by this protracted and debilitating exhalation. This
process, in a course of years, renders the body delicate, and less able
to withstand disease; and in the result shortens life. Sir John
Sinclair, who has written a large work on the Causes of Longevity,
states, as one result of his extensive investigations, that he has never
yet heard or read of a single case of great longevity, where the
individual was not an early riser. He says, that he has found cases, in
which the individual has violated some one of all the other laws of
health, and yet lived to great age; but never a single instance, in
which any constitution has withstood that undermining, consequent on
protracting the hours of repose beyond the demands of the system.

Another reason for early rising, is, that it is indispensable to a
systematic and well-regulated family. At whatever hour the parents
retire, children and domestics, wearied by play or labor, must retire
early. Children usually awake with the dawn of light, and commence their
play, while domestics usually prefer the freshness of morning for their
labors. If, then, the parents rise at a late hour, they either induce a
habit of protracting sleep in their children and domestics, or else the
family is up, and at their pursuits, while their supervisors are in
bed. Any woman, who asserts that her children and domestics, in the
first hours of day, when their spirits are freshest, will be as well
regulated without her presence, as with it, confesses that, which surely
is little for her credit. It is believed, that any candid woman,
whatever may be her excuse for late rising, will concede, that, if she
could rise early, it would be for the advantage of her family. A late
breakfast puts back the work, through the whole day, for every member of
a family; and, if the parents thus occasion the loss of an hour or two,
to each individual, who, but for their delay in the morning, would be
usefully employed, they, alone, are responsible for all this waste of
time. Is it said, that those, who wish to rise early, can go to their
employments before breakfast? it may be replied, that, in most cases, it
is not safe to use the eyes or the muscles in the morning, till the
losses of the night have been repaired by food. In addition to this, it
may be urged, that, where the parents set an example of the violation of
the rules of health and industry, their influence tends in the wrong
direction; so that whatever waste of time is induced, by a practice
which they thus uphold, must be set down to their account.

But the practice of early rising has a relation to the general interests
of the social community, as well as to that of each distinct family. All
that great portion of the community, who are employed in business and
labor, find it needful to rise early; and all their hours of meals, and
their appointments for business or pleasure, must be accommodated to
these arrangements. Now, if a small portion of the community establish
very different hours, it makes a kind of jostling, in all the concerns
and interests of society. The various appointments for the public, such
as meetings, schools, and business hours, must be accommodated to the
mass, and not to individuals. The few, then, who establish domestic
habits at variance with the majority, are either constantly interrupted
in their own arrangements, or else are interfering with the rights and
interests of others. This is exemplified in the case of schools. In
families where late rising is practised, either hurry, irregularity, and
neglect, are engendered in the family, or else the interests of the
school, and thus of the community, are sacrificed. In this, and many
other concerns, it can be shown, that the wellbeing of the bulk of the
people, is, to a greater or less extent, impaired by this aristocratic
practice. Let any teacher select the unpunctual scholars,--a class who
most seriously interfere with the interests of the school;--and let men
of business select those who cause them most waste of time and vexation,
by unpunctuality; and it will be found, that they are among the late
risers, and rarely among those who rise early. Thus, it is manifest,
that late rising not only injures the person and family which practise
it, but interferes with the rights and convenience of the community.


[H] Shooting into a long, small, stalk or root.



In the preceding chapters, we have noticed the various causes, which,
one or all, operate to produce that melancholy delicacy and decay of the
female constitution, which are the occasion of so much physical and
mental suffering throughout this Country.

These, in a more condensed form, may be enumerated thus:

A want of exercise, inducing softness in the bones, weakness in the
muscles, inactivity in the digestive organs, and general debility in the
nervous system: A neglect of the care of the skin, whereby the blood has
not been properly purified, and the internal organs have been weakened:
A violation of the laws of health, in regard to food, by eating too
much, too fast, and too often; by using stimulating food and drinks; by
using them too warm or too cold; and by eating that which the power of
the stomach is not sufficient to digest: A neglect of the laws of
health, in regard to clothing, by dressing too tight, and by wearing too
little covering, in cold and damp weather, and especially by not
sufficiently protecting the feet: A neglect to gain a proper supply of
pure air, in sleeping apartments and schoolrooms, and too great a
confinement to the house: The pursuit of exciting amusements at
unseasonable hours, and the many exposures involved at such times: And
lastly, sleeping by day, instead of by night, and protracting the hours
of sleep, beyond the period of repose demanded for rest; thus
exhausting, instead of recruiting, the energies of the system.

But all the other causes, combined, probably, do not produce one half
the evils, which result from a want of proper exercise. A person who
keeps all the functions of the system in full play, by the active and
frequent use of every muscle, especially if it be in the open air, gains
a power of constitution, which can resist many evils that would follow
from the other neglects and risks detailed. This being the case, there
can be no subject, more important for mothers and young ladies to
understand, than the influence on the health, both of body and mind, of
the neglect or abuse of the muscular system.

It has been shown, in the previous pages, that all the muscles have
nerves and blood-vessels, running in larger trunks, or minute branches,
to every portion of the body. The experiments of Sir Charles Bell and
others, have developed the curious fact, that each apparently single
nerve, in reality consists of two distinct portions, running together in
the same covering. One portion, is the nerve of _sensation_ or
_feeling_, the other, the nerve of _motion_. The nerves of sensation are
those which are affected by the emotions and volitions of the mind; and
the nerves of motion are those which impart moving power to the muscles.
Experiments show, that, where the nerves issue from the spine, the
nerve of sensation may be cut off without severing the nerve of motion,
and then the parts, to which this nerve extends, lose the power of
feeling, while the power of motion continues; and so, on the other hand,
the nerve of motion may be divided, and, the nerve of sensation
remaining uninjured, the power of feeling is retained, and the power of
motion is lost.

In certain nervous diseases, sometimes a limb loses its power of
feeling, and yet retains the power of motion; in other cases, the power
of motion is lost, and the power of sensation is retained; and in other
cases, still, when a limb is _paralysed_, both the power of motion and
of sensation are lost.

Now, the nerves, like all other parts of the body, gain and lose
strength, according as they are exercised. If they have too much, or too
little, exercise, they lose strength; if they are exercised to a proper
degree, they gain strength. When the mind is continuously excited, by
business, study, or the imagination, the nerves of feeling are kept in
constant action, while the nerves of motion are unemployed. If this is
continued, for a long time, the nerves of sensation lose their strength,
from over action, and the nerves of motion lose their power, from
inactivity. In consequence, there is a morbid excitability of the
nervous, and a debility of the muscular, system, which make all exertion
irksome and wearisome. The only mode of preserving the health of these
systems, is, to keep up in them an equilibrium of action. For this
purpose, occupations must be sought, which exercise the muscles, and
interest the mind; and thus the equal action of both kinds of nerves is
secured. This shows why exercise is so much more healthful and
invigorating, when the mind is interested, than when it is not. As an
illustration, let a person go a shopping, with a friend, and have
nothing to do, but look on; how soon do the continuous walking and
standing weary! But suppose one, thus wearied, hears of the arrival of a
very dear friend: she can instantly walk off a mile or two, to meet
her, without the least feeling of fatigue. By this is shown the
importance of furnishing, for young persons, exercise in which they will
take an interest. Long and formal walks, merely for exercise, though
they do some good, in securing fresh air and some exercise of the
muscles, would be of triple benefit, if changed to amusing sports, or to
the cultivation of fruits and flowers, in which it is impossible to
engage, without acquiring a great interest. It shows, also, why it is
far better to trust to useful domestic exercise, at home, than to send a
young person out to walk, for the mere purpose of exercise. Young girls
can seldom be made to realize the value of health, and the need of
exercise to secure it, so as to feel much interest in walking abroad,
when they have no other object. But, if they are brought up to minister
to the comfort and enjoyment of themselves and others, by performing
domestic duties, they will constantly be interested and cheered in their
exercise, by the feeling of usefulness, and the consciousness of having
performed their duty.

There are few young persons, it is hoped, who are brought up with such
miserable habits of selfishness and indolence, that they cannot be made
to feel happier, by the consciousness of being usefully employed. And
those who have never been accustomed to think or care for any one but
themselves, and who seem to feel little pleasure in making themselves
useful, by wise and proper influences, can often be gradually awakened
to the new pleasure of benevolent exertion to promote the comfort and
enjoyment of others. And the more this sacred and elevating kind of
enjoyment is tasted, the greater is the relish induced. Other
enjoyments, often cloy; but the heavenly pleasure, secured by virtuous
industry and benevolence, while it satisfies, at the time, awakens fresh
desires for so ennobling a good.

But, besides the favorable influence on the nervous and muscular system,
thus gained, it has been shown, that exercise imparts fresh strength and
vitality to all parts of the body. The exertion of the muscles quickens
the flow of the blood, which thus ministers its supplies faster to
every part of the body, and, of course, loses a portion of its
nourishing qualities. When this is the case, the stomach issues its
mandate of _hunger_, calling for new supplies. When these are furnished,
the action of the muscles again hastens a full supply to every organ,
and thus the nerves, the muscles, the bones, the skin, and all the
internal organs, are invigorated, and the whole body developes its
powers, in fair proportions, fresh strength and full beauty. All the
cosmetics of trade, all the labors of mantuamakers, milliners, makers of
corsets, shoemakers, and hairdressers, could never confer so clear and
pure a skin, so fresh a color, so finely moulded a form, and such
cheerful health and spirits, as would be secured by training a child to
obey the laws of the benevolent Creator, in the appropriate employment
of body and mind in useful domestic exercise. And the present habits of
the wealthy, and even of those without wealth, which condemn young girls
so exclusively to books or sedentary pursuits, are as destructive to
beauty and grace, as they are to health and happiness.

Every allowance should be made for the mistakes of mothers and teachers,
to whom the knowledge which would have saved them from the evils of such
a course has never been furnished; but as information, on these matters,
is every year becoming more abundant, it is to be hoped, that the next
generation, at least, may be saved from the evils which afflict those
now on the stage. What a change would be made in the happiness of this
Country, if all the pale and delicate young girls should become
blooming, healthful, and active, and all the enfeebled and care-worn
mothers should be transformed into such fresh, active, healthful, and
energetic matrons, as are so frequently found in our mother land!

It has been stated, that the excessive use of the muscles, as much as
their inactivity, tends to weaken them. Nothing is more painful, than
the keeping a muscle constantly on the stretch, without any relaxation
or change. This can be realized, by holding out an arm, perpendicularly
to the body, for ten or fifteen minutes, if any one can so long bear the
pain. Of course, confinement to one position, for a great length of
time, tends to weaken the muscles thus strained.

This shows the evil of confining young children to their seats, in the
schoolroom, so much and so long as is often done. Having no backs to
their seats, as is generally the case, the muscles, which are employed
in holding up the body, are kept in a state of constant tension, till
they grow feeble from overworking. Then, the child begins to grow
crooked, and the parents, to remedy the evil, sometimes put on bracers
or corsets. These, instead of doing any good, serve to prevent the use
of those muscles, which, if properly exercised, would hold the body
straight; and thus they grow still weaker, from entire inactivity. If a
parent perceives that a child is growing crooked, the proper remedy is,
to withdraw it from all pursuits which tax one particular set of
muscles, and turn it out to exercise in sports, or in gardening, in the
fresh air, when all the muscles will be used, and the whole system
strengthened. Or, if this cannot be done, sweeping, dusting, running of
errands, and many household employments, which involve lifting,
stooping, bending, and walking, are quite as good, and, on some
accounts, better, provided the house is properly supplied with fresh

Where persons have formed habits of inactivity, some caution is
necessary, in attempting a change; this must be made gradually; and the
muscles must never be excessively fatigued at any time. If this change
be not thus gradually made, the weakness, at first caused by inactivity,
will be increased by excessive exertion. A distinguished medical
gentleman gives this rule, to direct us in regard to the amount of
fatigue, which is safe and useful. A person is never too much fatigued,
if one night of repose gives sufficient rest, and restores the usual
strength. But, if the sleep is disturbed, and the person wakes with a
feeling of weariness and languor, it is a sure indication that the
exercise has been excessive. No more fatigue, then, should be allowed,
than one night's rest will remedy.

Some persons object to sweeping, on account of the dust inhaled. But
free ventilation, frequent sweeping, and the use of damp sand, or damp
Indian meal, or damp tea leaves, for carpets, will secure a more clear
atmosphere than is often found in the streets of cities. And the mother,
who will hire domestics, to take away this and other domestic
employments, which would secure to her daughters, health, grace, beauty,
and domestic virtues, and the young ladies, who consent to be deprived
of these advantages, will probably live to mourn over the languor,
discouragement, pain, and sorrow, which will come with ill health, as
the almost inevitable result.

The following are extracts from 'The Young Ladies' Friend,' on this

"Whether rich or poor, young or old, married or single, a woman is
always liable to be called to the performance of every kind of domestic
duty, as well as to be placed at the head of a family; and nothing,
short of a _practical_ knowledge of the details of housekeeping, can
ever make those duties easy, or render her competent to direct others in
the performance of them.

"All moral writers on female character, treat of Domestic Economy as an
indispensable part of female education; and this, too, in the old
countries of Europe, where an abundant population, and the institutions
of society, render it easy to secure the services of faithful

"All female characters that are held up to admiration, whether in
fiction or biography, will be found to possess these domestic
accomplishments; and, if they are considered indispensable in the Old
World, how much more are they needed, in this land of independence,
where riches cannot exempt the mistress of a family from the difficulty
of procuring efficient aid, and where perpetual change of domestics,
renders perpetual instruction and superintendence necessary.

"Since, then, the details of good housekeeping must be included in a
good female education, it is very desirable that they should be acquired
when young, and so practised as to become easy, and to be performed
dexterously and expeditiously."

"The elegant and accomplished Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, who figured in
the fashionable, as well as the literary, circles of her time, has said,
that 'the most minute details of household economy become elegant and
refined, when they are ennobled by sentiment;' and they are truly
ennobled, when we do them either from a sense of duty, or consideration
for a parent, or love to a husband. 'To furnish a room,' continues this
lady, 'is no longer a commonplace affair, shared with upholsterers and
cabinet-makers; it is decorating the place where I am to meet a friend
or lover. To order dinner is not merely arranging a meal with my cook;
it is preparing refreshment for him whom I love. These necessary
occupations, viewed in this light, by a person capable of strong
attachment, are so many pleasures, and afford her far more delight, than
the games and shows which constitute the amusements of the world.'

"Such is the testimony of a titled lady of the last century, to the
sentiment that may be made to mingle in the most homely occupations. I
will now quote that of a modern female writer and traveller, who, in her
pleasant book, called 'Six Weeks on the Loire,' has thus described the
housewifery of the daughter of a French nobleman, residing in a superb
chateau on that river. The travellers had just arrived, and been
introduced, when the following scene took place.

"'The bill of fare for dinner was discussed in my presence, and settled,
_sans façon_,[I] with that delightful frankness and gayety, which, in
the French character, gives a charm to the most trifling occurrence.
Mademoiselle Louise then begged me to excuse her for half an hour, as
she was going to make some creams, and some _pastilles_.[J] I requested
that I might accompany her, and also render myself useful; we
accordingly went together to the dairy. I made tarts _à l'Anglaise_,[K]
whilst she made confections and _bonbons_,[L] and all manner of pretty
things, with as much ease as if she had never done any thing else, and
as much grace as she displayed in the saloon. I could not help thinking,
as I looked at her, with her servants about her, all cheerful,
respectful, and anxious to attend upon her, how much better it would be
for the young ladies in England, if they would occasionally return to
the habits of their grandmammas, and mingle the animated and endearing
occupations of domestic life, and the modest manners and social
amusements of home, with the perpetual practising on harps and pianos,
and the incessant efforts at display, and search after gayety, which, at
the present day, render them any thing but what an amiable man, of a
reflecting mind and delicate sentiments, would desire in the woman he
might wish to select as the companion of his life.'"


[I] Without formality, or useless ceremony.

[J] Rolls of paste, or pastry, or sugarplums.

[K] According to the English fashion.

[L] Nice things or dainties, such as sweetmeats.



Good-manners are the expressions of benevolence in personal intercourse,
by which we endeavor to promote the comfort and enjoyment of others, and
to avoid all that gives needless uneasiness. It is the exterior
exhibition of the Divine precept, which requires us to do to others, as
we would that they should do to us. It is saying, by our deportment, to
all around, that we consider their feelings, tastes, and convenience, as
equal in value to our own.

Good-manners lead us to avoid all practices which offend the taste of
others; all violations of the conventional rules of propriety; all rude
and disrespectful language and deportment; and all remarks, which would
tend to wound the feelings of another.

There is a serious defect, in the manners of the American people,
especially in the free States, which can never be efficiently remedied,
except in the domestic circle, and during early life. It is a deficiency
in the free expression of kindly feelings and sympathetic emotions, and
a want of courtesy in deportment. The causes, which have led to this
result, may easily be traced.

The forefathers of this Nation, to a wide extent, were men who were
driven from their native land, by laws and customs which they believed
to be opposed both to civil and religious freedom. The sufferings they
were called to endure, the subduing of those gentler feelings which bind
us to country, kindred, and home, and the constant subordination of the
passions to stern principle, induced characters of great firmness and
self-control. They gave up the comforts and refinements of a civilized
country, and came, as pilgrims, to a hard soil, a cold clime, and a
heathen shore. They were continually forced to encounter danger,
privations, sickness, loneliness, and death; and all these, their
religion taught them to meet with calmness, fortitude, and submission.
And thus it became the custom and habit of the whole mass, to repress,
rather than to encourage, the expression of feeling.

Persons who are called to constant and protracted suffering and
privation, are forced to subdue and conceal emotion; for the free
expression of it would double their own suffering, and increase the
sufferings of others. Those, only, who are free from care and anxiety,
and whose minds are mainly occupied by cheerful emotions, are at full
liberty to unveil their feelings.

It was under such stern and rigorous discipline, that the first children
in New England were reared; and the manners and habits of parents are
usually, to a great extent, transmitted to children. Thus it comes to
pass, that the descendants of the Puritans, now scattered over every
part of the Nation, are predisposed to conceal the gentler emotions,
while their manners are calm, decided, and cold, rather than free and
impulsive. Of course, there are very many exceptions to these
predominating results.

The causes, to which we may attribute a general want of courtesy in
manners, are certain incidental results of our democratic institutions.
Our ancestors, and their descendants, have constantly been combating the
aristocratic principle, which would exalt one class of men at the
expense of another. They have had to contend with this principle, not
only in civil, but in social, life. Almost every American, in his own
person, as well as in behalf of his class, has had to assume and defend
the main principle of democracy,--that every man's feelings and
interests are equal in value to those of every other man. But, in doing
this, there has been some want of clear discrimination. Because claims,
based on distinctions of mere birth, fortune, or position, were found to
be injurious, many have gone to the extreme of inferring that all
distinctions, involving subordination, are useless. Such, would regard
children as equals to parents, pupils to teachers, domestics to their
employers, and subjects to magistrates; and that, too, in all respects.

The fact, that certain grades of superiority and subordination are
needful, both for individual and public benefit, has not been clearly
discerned; and there has been a gradual tendency to an extreme, which
has sensibly affected our manners. All the proprieties and courtesies,
which depend on the recognition of the relative duties of superior and
subordinate, have been warred upon; and thus we see, to an increasing
extent, disrespectful treatment of parents, from children; of teachers,
from pupils; of employers, from domestics; and of the aged, from the
young. In all classes and circles, there is a gradual decay in courtesy
of address.

In cases, too, where kindness is rendered, it is often accompanied with
a cold, unsympathizing manner, which greatly lessens its value, while
kindness or politeness is received in a similar style of coolness, as if
it were but the payment of a just due.

It is owing to these causes, that the American people, especially the
inhabitants of New England, do not do themselves justice. For, while
those, who are near enough to learn their real character and feelings,
can discern the most generous impulses, and the most kindly sympathies,
they are so veiled, in a composed and indifferent demeanor, as to be
almost entirely concealed from strangers.

These defects in our national manners, it especially falls to the care
of mothers, and all who have charge of the young, to rectify; and if
they seriously undertake the matter, and wisely adapt means to ends,
these defects will be remedied. With reference to this object, the
following ideas are suggested.

The law of Christianity and of democracy, which teaches that all men are
born equal, and that their interests and feelings should be regarded as
of equal value, seems to be adopted in aristocratic circles, with
exclusive reference to the class in which the individual moves. The
courtly gentleman, addresses all of his own class with politeness and
respect; and, in all his actions, seems to allow that the feelings and
convenience of others are to be regarded, the same as his own. But his
demeanor to those of inferior station, is not based on the same rule.

Among those, who make up aristocratic circles, such as are above them,
are deemed of superior, and such as are below, of inferior, value. Thus,
if a young, ignorant, and vicious coxcomb, happens to be born a lord,
the aged, the virtuous, the learned, and the wellbred, of another class,
must give his convenience the precedence, and must address him in terms
of respect. So, when a man of noble birth is thrown among the lower
classes, he demeans himself in a style, which, to persons of his own
class, would be deemed the height of assumption and rudeness.

Now, the principles of democracy require, that the same courtesy, which
we accord to our own circle, shall be extended to every class and
condition; and that distinctions, of superiority and subordination,
shall depend, not on accidents of birth, fortune, or occupation, but
solely on those relations, which the good of all classes equally
require. The distinctions demanded, in a democratic state, are simply
those, which result from relations, that are common to every class, and
are for the benefit of all.

It is for the benefit of every class, that children be subordinate to
parents, pupils to teachers, the employed to their employers, and
subjects to magistrates. In addition to this, it is for the general
wellbeing, that the comfort or convenience of the delicate and feeble,
should be preferred to that of the strong and healthy, who would suffer
less by any deprivation, and that precedence should be given to their
elders, by the young, and that reverence should be given to the hoary

The rules of good-breeding, in a democratic state, must be founded on
these principles. It is, indeed, assumed, that the value of the
happiness of each individual, is the same as that of every other; but,
as there must be occasions, where there are advantages which all cannot
enjoy, there must be general rules for regulating a selection.
Otherwise, there would be constant scrambling, among those of equal
claims, and brute force must be the final resort; in which case the
strongest would have the best of every thing. The democratic rule, then,
is, that superiors, in age, station, or office, have precedence of
subordinates; age and feebleness, of youth and strength; and the feebler
sex, of more vigorous man.[M]

There is, also, a style of deportment and address, which is appropriate
to these different relations. It is suitable for a superior to secure
compliance with his wishes, from those subordinate to him, by commands;
but a subordinate must secure compliance with his wishes, from a
superior, by requests. It is suitable for a parent, teacher, or
employer, to admonish for neglect of duty; but not for an inferior to
adopt such a course towards a superior. It is suitable for a superior to
take precedence of a subordinate, without any remark; but not for an
inferior, without previously asking leave, or offering an apology. It is
proper for a superior to use language and manners of freedom and
familiarity, which would be improper from a subordinate to a superior.

The want of due regard to these proprieties, occasions the chief defect
in American manners. It is very common to hear children talk to their
parents, in a style proper only between companions and equals; so, also,
the young address their elders, those employed, their employers, and
domestics, the members of the family and their visiters, in a style,
which is inappropriate to their relative positions. A respectful address
is required not merely towards superiors; every person desires to be
treated with courtesy and respect, and therefore, the law of benevolence
demands such demeanor, towards all whom we meet in the social
intercourse of life. "Be ye courteous," is the direction of the Apostle
in reference to our treatment of _all_.

Good-manners can be successfully cultivated, only in early life, and in
the domestic circle. There is nothing which depends so much upon
_habit_, as the constantly recurring proprieties of good-breeding; and,
if a child grows up without forming such habits, it is very rarely the
case that they can be formed at a later period. The feeling, that it is
of little consequence how we behave at home, if we conduct properly
abroad, is a very fallacious one. Persons, who are careless and ill bred
at home, may imagine that they can assume good-manners abroad; but they
mistake. Fixed habits of tone, manner, language, and movements, cannot
be suddenly altered; and those who are illbred at home, even when they
try to hide their bad habits, are sure to violate many of the obvious
rules of propriety, and yet be unconscious of it.

And there is nothing, which would so effectually remove prejudice
against our democratic institutions, as the general cultivation of
good-breeding in the domestic circle. Good-manners are the exterior of
benevolence, the minute and often recurring exhibitions of "peace and
good-will;" and the nation, as well as the individual, which most excels
in the external, as well as the internal, principle, will be most
respected and beloved.

The following are the leading points, which claim attention from those
who have the care of the young.

In the first place, in the family, there should be required, a strict
attention to the rules of precedence, and those modes of address
appropriate to the various relations to be sustained. Children should
always be required to offer their superiors, in age or station, the
precedence in all comforts and conveniences, and always address them in
a respectful tone and manner. The custom of adding "Sir," or "Ma'am," to
"Yes," or "No," is valuable, as a perpetual indication of a respectful
recognition of superiority. It is now going out of fashion, even among
the most wellbred people; probably from a want of consideration of its
importance. Every remnant of courtesy of address, in our customs, should
be carefully cherished, by all who feel a value for the proprieties of

If parents allow their children to talk to them, and to the grown
persons in the family, in the same style in which they address each
other, it will be vain to hope for the courtesy of manner and tone,
which good-breeding demands in the general intercourse of society. In a
large family, where the elder children are grown up, and the younger are
small, it is important to require the latter to treat the elder as
superiors. There are none, so ready as young children to assume airs of
equality; and, if they are allowed to treat one class of superiors in
age and character disrespectfully, they will soon use the privilege
universally. This is the reason, why the youngest children of a family
are most apt to be pert, forward, and unmannerly.

Another point to be aimed at, is, to require children always to
acknowledge every act of kindness and attention, either by words or
manner. If they are so trained as always to make grateful
acknowledgements, when receiving favors, one of the objectionable
features in American manners will be avoided.

Again, children should be required to ask leave, whenever they wish to
gratify curiosity, or use an article which belongs to another. And if
cases occur, when they cannot comply with the rules of good-breeding,
as, for instance, when they must step between a person and the fire, or
take the chair of an older person, they should be required either to ask
leave, or to offer an apology.

There is another point of good-breeding, which cannot, in all cases, be
understood and applied by children, in its widest extent. It is that,
which requires us to avoid all remarks which tend to embarrass, vex,
mortify, or in any way wound the feelings, of another. To notice
personal defects; to allude to others' faults, or the faults of their
friends; to speak disparagingly of the sect or party to which a person
belongs; to be inattentive, when addressed in conversation; to
contradict flatly; to speak in contemptuous tones of opinions expressed
by another;--all these, are violations of the rules of good-breeding,
which children should be taught to regard. Under this head, comes the
practice of whispering, and staring about, when a teacher, or lecturer,
or clergyman, is addressing a class or audience. Such inattention, is
practically saying, that what the person is uttering is not worth
attending to; and persons of real good-breeding always avoid it. Loud
talking and laughing, in a large assembly, even when no exercises are
going on; yawning and gaping in company; and not looking in the face a
person who is addressing you, are deemed marks of ill-breeding.

Another branch of good-manners, relates to the duties of hospitality.
Politeness requires us to welcome visiters with cordiality; to offer
them the best accommodations; to address conversation to them; and to
express, by tone and manner, kindness and respect. Offering the hand to
all visiters, at one's own house, is a courteous and hospitable custom;
and a cordial shake of the hand, when friends meet, would abate much of
the coldness of manner ascribed to Americans.

The last point of good-breeding, to be noticed, refers to the
conventional rules of propriety and good taste. Of these, the first
class relates to the avoidance of all disgusting or offensive personal
habits, such as fingering the hair; cleaning the teeth or nails; picking
the nose; spitting on carpets; snuffing, instead of using a
handkerchief, or using the article in an offensive manner; lifting up
the boots or shoes, as some men do, to tend them on the knee, or to
finger them;--all these tricks, either at home or in society, children
should be taught to avoid.

Another branch, under this head, may be called _table manners_. To
persons of good-breeding, nothing is more annoying, than violating the
conventional proprieties of the table. Reaching over another person's
plate; standing up, to reach distant articles, instead of asking to have
them passed; using one's own knife, and spoon, for butter, salt, or
sugar, when it is the custom of the family to provide separate utensils
for the purpose; setting cups, with tea dripping from them, on the
tablecloth, instead of the mats or small plates furnished; using the
tablecloth, instead of the napkins; eating fast, and in a noisy manner;
putting large pieces in the mouth; looking and eating as if very hungry,
or as if anxious to get at certain dishes; sitting at too great a
distance from the table, and dropping food; laying the knife and fork on
the tablecloth, instead of on the bread, or the edge of the plate;--all
these particulars, children should be taught to avoid. It is always
desirable, too, to require children, when at table with grown persons,
to be silent, except when addressed by others; or else their chattering
will interrupt the conversation and comfort of their elders. They should
always be required, too, to wait, _in silence_, till all the older
persons are helped.

All these things should be taught to children, gradually, and with great
patience and gentleness. Some parents, with whom good-manners is a great
object, are in danger of making their children perpetually
uncomfortable, by suddenly surrounding them with so many rules, that
they must inevitably violate some one or other, a great part of the
time. It is much better to begin with a few rules, and be steady and
persevering with these, till a habit is formed, and then take a few
more, thus making the process easy and gradual. Otherwise, the temper of
children will be injured; or, hopeless of fulfilling so many
requisitions, they will become reckless and indifferent to all.

But, in reference to those who have enjoyed advantages for the
cultivation of good-manners, and who duly estimate its importance, one
caution is necessary. Those, who never have had such habits formed in
youth, are under disadvantages, which no benevolence of temper can
remedy. They may often violate the tastes and feelings of others, not
from a want of proper regard for them, but from ignorance of custom, or
want of habit, or abstraction of mind, or from other causes, which
demand forbearance and sympathy, rather than displeasure. An ability to
bear patiently with defects in manners, and to make candid and
considerate allowance for a want of advantages, or for peculiarities in
mental habits, is one mark of the benevolence of real good-breeding.

The advocates of monarchical and aristocratic institutions, have always
had great plausibility given to their views, by the seeming tendencies
to insubordination and bad-manners, of our institutions. And it has been
too indiscriminately conceded, by the defenders of the latter, that such
are these tendencies, and that the offensive points, in American
manners, are the necessary result of democratic principles.

But it is believed, that both facts and reasoning are in opposition to
this opinion. The following extract from the work of De Tocqueville,
exhibits the opinion of an impartial observer, when comparing American
manners with those of the English, who are confessedly the most
aristocratic of all people.

He previously remarks on the tendency of aristocracy to make men more
sympathizing with persons of their own peculiar class, and less so
towards those of lower degree; and he then contrasts American manners
with the English, claiming that the Americans are much the most affable,
mild, and social. "In America, where the privileges of birth never
existed, and where riches confer no peculiar rights on their possessors,
men acquainted with each other are very ready to frequent the same
places, and find neither peril nor advantage in the free interchange of
their thoughts. If they meet, by accident, they neither seek nor avoid
intercourse; their manner is therefore natural, frank, and open." "If
their demeanor is often cold and serious, it is never haughty or
constrained." But an "aristocratic pride is still extremely great among
the English; and, as the limits of aristocracy are ill-defined, every
body lives in constant dread, lest advantage should be taken of his
familiarity. Unable to judge, at once, of the social position of those
he meets, an Englishman prudently avoids all contact with them. Men are
afraid, lest some slight service rendered should draw them into an
unsuitable acquaintance; they dread civilities, and they avoid the
obtrusive gratitude of a stranger, as much as his hatred."

Thus, _facts_ seem to show that when the most aristocratic nation in the
world is compared, as to manners, with the most democratic, the
judgement of strangers is in favor of the latter.

And if good-manners are the outward exhibition of the democratic
principle of impartial benevolence and equal rights, surely the nation
which adopts this rule, both in social and civil life, is the most
likely to secure the desirable exterior. The aristocrat, by his
principles, extends the exterior of impartial benevolence to his own
class, only; the democratic principle, requires it to be extended _to

There is reason, therefore, to hope and expect more refined and polished
manners in America, than in any other land; while all the developements
of taste and refinement, such as poetry, music, painting, sculpture, and
architecture, it may be expected, will come to a higher state of
perfection, here, than in any other nation.

If this Country increases in virtue and intelligence, as it may, there
is no end to the wealth which will pour in as the result of our
resources of climate, soil, and navigation, and the skill, industry,
energy, and enterprise, of our countrymen. This wealth, if used as
intelligence and virtue dictate, will furnish the means for a superior
education to all classes, and every facility for the refinement of
taste, intellect, and feeling.

Moreover, in this Country, labor is ceasing to be the badge of a lower
class; so that already it is disreputable for a man to be "a lazy
gentleman." And this feeling must increase, till there is such an
equalisation of labor, as will afford all the time needful for every
class to improve the many advantages offered to them. Already, in
Boston, through the munificence of some of her citizens, there are
literary and scientific advantages, offered to all classes, rarely
enjoyed elsewhere. In Cincinnati, too, the advantages of education, now
offered to the poorest classes, without charge, surpass what, some years
ago, most wealthy men could purchase, for any price. And it is believed,
that a time will come, when the poorest boy in America can secure
advantages, which will equal what the heir of the proudest peerage can
now command.

The records of the courts of France and Germany, (as detailed by the
Duchess of Orleans,) in and succeeding the brilliant reign of Louis the
Fourteenth,--a period which was deemed the acme of elegance and
refinement,--exhibit a grossness, a vulgarity, and a coarseness, not to
be found among the lowest of our respectable poor. And the biography of
Beau Nash, who attempted to reform the manners of the gentry, in the
times of Queen Anne, exhibits violations of the rules of decency among
the aristocracy, which the commonest yeoman of this Land would feel
disgraced in perpetrating.

This shows, that our lowest classes, at this period, are more refined,
than were the highest in aristocratic lands, a hundred years ago; and
another century may show the lowest classes, in wealth, in this Country,
attaining as high a polish, as adorns those who now are leaders of
good-manners in the courts of kings.


[M] The universal practice of this Nation, in thus giving precedence to
woman, has been severely commented on by Miss Martineau and some others,
who would transfer all the business of the other sex to women, and then
have them treated like men. May this evidence of our superior
civilisation and Christianity increase, rather than diminish!



There is nothing, which has a more abiding influence on the happiness of
a family, than the preservation of equable and cheerful temper and tones
in the housekeeper. A woman, who is habitually gentle, sympathizing,
forbearing, and cheerful, carries an atmosphere about her, which
imparts a soothing and sustaining influence, and renders it easier for
all to do right, under her administration, than in any other situation.

The writer has known families, where the mother's presence seemed the
sunshine of the circle around her; imparting a cheering and vivifying
power, scarcely realized, till it was withdrawn. Every one, without
thinking of it, or knowing why it was so, experienced a peaceful and
invigorating influence, as soon as he entered the sphere illumined by
her smile, and sustained by her cheering kindness and sympathy. On the
contrary, many a good housekeeper, (good in every respect but this,) by
wearing a countenance of anxiety and dissatisfaction, and by indulging
in the frequent use of sharp and reprehensive tones, more than destroys
all the comfort which otherwise would result from her system, neatness,
and economy.

There is a secret, social sympathy, which every mind, to a greater or
less degree, experiences with the feelings of those around, as they are
manifested by the countenance and voice. A sorrowful, a discontented, or
an angry, countenance, produces a silent, sympathetic influence,
imparting a sombre shade to the mind, while tones of anger or complaint
still more effectually jar the spirits.

No person can maintain a quiet and cheerful frame of mind, while tones
of discontent and displeasure are sounding on the ear. We may gradually
accustom ourselves to the evil, till it is partially diminished; but it
always is an evil, which greatly interferes with the enjoyment of the
family state. There are sometimes cases, where the entrance of the
mistress of a family seems to awaken a slight apprehension, in every
mind around, as if each felt in danger of a reproof, for something
either perpetrated or neglected. A woman, who should go around her house
with a small stinging snapper, which she habitually applied to those
whom she met, would be encountered with feelings very much like to
those which are experienced by the inmates of a family, where the
mistress often uses her countenance and voice, to inflict similar
penalties for duties neglected.

Yet, there are many allowances to be made for housekeepers, who
sometimes imperceptibly and unconsciously fall into such habits. A
woman, who attempts to carry out any plans of system, order, and
economy, and who has her feelings and habits conformed to certain rules,
is constantly liable to have her plans crossed, and her taste violated,
by the inexperience or inattention of those about her. And no
housekeeper, whatever may be her habits, can escape the frequent
recurrence of negligence or mistake, which interferes with her plans. It
is probable, that there is no class of persons, in the world, who have
such incessant trials of temper, and temptations to be fretful, as
American housekeepers. For a housekeeper's business is not, like that of
the other sex, limited to a particular department, for which previous
preparation is made. It consists of ten thousand little disconnected
items, which can never be so systematically arranged, that there is no
daily jostling, somewhere. And in the best-regulated families, it is not
unfrequently the case, that some act of forgetfulness or carelessness,
from some member, will disarrange the business of the whole day, so that
every hour will bring renewed occasion for annoyance. And the more
strongly a woman realizes the value of time, and the importance of
system and order, the more will she be tempted to irritability and

The following considerations, may aid in preparing a woman to meet such
daily crosses, with even a cheerful temper and tones.

In the first place, a woman, who has charge of a large household, should
regard her duties as dignified, important, and difficult. The mind is so
made, as to be elevated and cheered by a sense of far-reaching influence
and usefulness. A woman, who feels that she is a cipher, and that it
makes little difference how she performs her duties, has far less to
sustain and invigorate her, than one, who truly estimates the
importance of her station. A man, who feels that the destinies of a
nation are turning on the judgement and skill with which he plans and
executes, has a pressure of motive, and an elevation of feeling, which
are great safeguards from all that is low, trivial, and degrading.

So, an American mother and housekeeper, who looks at her position in the
aspect presented in the previous pages, and who rightly estimates the
long train of influences which will pass down to thousands, whose
destinies, from generation to generation, will be modified by those
decisions of her will, which regulated the temper, principles, and
habits, of her family, must be elevated above petty temptations, which
would otherwise assail her.

Again, a housekeeper should feel that she really has great difficulties
to meet and overcome. A person, who wrongly thinks there is little
danger, can never maintain so faithful a guard, as one who rightly
estimates the temptations which beset her. Nor can one, who thinks that
they are trifling difficulties which she has to encounter, and trivial
temptations, to which she must yield, so much enjoy the just reward of
conscious virtue and self-control, as one who takes an opposite view of
the subject.

A third method, is, for a woman deliberately to calculate on having her
best-arranged plans interfered with, very often; and to be in such a
state of preparation, that the evil will not come unawares. So
complicated are the pursuits, and so diverse the habits of the various
members of a family, that it is almost impossible for every one to avoid
interfering with the plans and taste of a housekeeper, in some one point
or another. It is, therefore, most wise, for a woman to keep the loins
of her mind ever girt, to meet such collisions with a cheerful and quiet

Another important rule, is, to form all plans and arrangements in
consistency with the means at command, and the character of those
around. A woman, who has a heedless husband, and young children, and
incompetent domestics, ought not to make such plans, as one may properly
form, who will not, in so many directions, meet embarrassment. She must
aim at just so much as she can probably secure, and no more; and thus
she will usually escape much temptation, and much of the irritation of

The fifth, and a very important, consideration, is, that _system_,
_economy_, and _neatness_, are valuable, only so far as they tend to
promote the comfort and wellbeing of those affected. Some women seem to
act under the impression, that these advantages _must_ be secured, at
all events, even if the comfort of the family be the sacrifice. True, it
is very important that children grow up in habits of system, neatness,
and order; and it is very desirable that the mother give them every
incentive, both by precept and example: but it is still more important,
that they grow up with amiable tempers, that they learn to meet the
crosses of life with patience and cheerfulness; and nothing has a
greater influence to secure this, than a mother's example. Whenever,
therefore, a woman cannot accomplish her plans of neatness and order,
without injury to her own temper, or to the temper of others, she ought
to modify and reduce them, until she can.

The sixth method, relates to the government of the tones of voice. In
many cases, when a woman's domestic arrangements are suddenly and
seriously crossed, it is impossible not to feel some irritation. But it
_is_ always possible to refrain from angry tones. A woman can resolve,
that, whatever happens, she will not speak, till she can do it in a calm
and gentle manner. _Perfect silence_ is a safe resort, when such control
cannot be attained, as enables a person to speak calmly; and this
determination, persevered in, will eventually be crowned with success.

Many persons seem to imagine, that tones of anger are needful, in order
to secure prompt obedience. But observation has convinced the writer
that they are _never_ necessary; that _in all cases_, reproof,
administered in calm tones, would be better. A case will be given in

A young girl had been repeatedly charged to avoid a certain arrangement
in cooking. On one day, when company was invited to dine, the direction
was forgotten, and the consequence was, an accident, which disarranged
every thing, seriously injured the principal dish, and delayed dinner
for an hour. The mistress of the family entered the kitchen, just as it
occurred, and, at a glance, saw the extent of the mischief. For a
moment, her eyes flashed, and her cheeks glowed; but she held her peace.
After a minute or so, she gave directions, in a calm voice, as to the
best mode of retrieving the evil, and then left, without a word said to
the offender.

After the company left, she sent for the girl, alone, and in a calm and
kind manner pointed out the aggravations of the case, and described the
trouble which had been caused to her husband, her visiters, and herself.
She then portrayed the future evils which would result from such habits
of neglect and inattention, and the modes of attempting to overcome
them; and then offered a reward for the future, if, in a given time, she
succeeded in improving in this respect. Not a tone of anger was uttered;
and yet the severest scolding of a practised Xantippe could not have
secured such contrition, and determination to reform, as was gained by
this method.

But similar negligence is often visited by a continuous stream of
complaint and reproof, which, in most cases, is met, either by sullen
silence, or impertinent retort, while anger prevents any contrition, or
any resolution of future amendment.

It is very certain, that some ladies do carry forward a most efficient
government, both of children and domestics, without employing tones of
anger; and therefore they are not indispensable, nor on any account

Though some ladies, of intelligence and refinement, do fall
unconsciously into such a practice, it is certainly very unlady-like,
and in very bad taste, to _scold_; and the further a woman departs from
all approach to it, the more perfectly she sustains her character as a

Another method of securing equanimity, amid the trials of domestic life,
is, to cultivate a habit of making allowances for the difficulties,
ignorance, or temptations, of those who violate rule or neglect duty. It
is vain, and most unreasonable, to expect the consideration and care of
a mature mind, in childhood and youth; or that persons, of such limited
advantages as most domestics have enjoyed, should practise proper
self-control, and possess proper habits and principles.

Every parent, and every employer, needs daily to cultivate the spirit
expressed in the Divine prayer, "forgive us our trespasses, as we
forgive those who trespass against us." The same allowances and
forbearance, which we supplicate from our Heavenly Father, and desire
from our fellow-men, in reference to our own deficiencies, we should
constantly aim to extend to all, who cross our feelings and interfere
with our plans.

The last, and most important, mode of securing a placid and cheerful
temper and tones, is, by a right view of the doctrine of a
superintending Providence. All persons are too much in the habit of
regarding the more important events of life, as exclusively under the
control of Perfect Wisdom. But the fall of a sparrow, or the loss of a
hair, they do not feel to be equally the result of His directing agency.
In consequence of this, Christian persons, who aim at perfect and
cheerful submission to heavy afflictions, and who succeed, to the
edification of all about them, are sometimes sadly deficient under petty
crosses. If a beloved child be laid in the grave, even if its death
resulted from the carelessness of a domestic, or of a physician, the eye
is turned from the subordinate agent, to the Supreme Guardian of all,
and to Him they bow, without murmur or complaint. But if a pudding be
burnt, or a room badly swept, or an errand forgotten, then vexation and
complaint are allowed, just as if these events were not appointed by
Perfect Wisdom, as much as the sorer chastisement.

A woman, therefore, needs to cultivate the _habitual_ feeling, that all
the events of her nursery and kitchen, are brought about by the
permission of our Heavenly Father, and that fretfulness or complaint, in
regard to these, is, in fact, complaining and disputing at the
appointments of God, and is really as sinful, as unsubmissive murmurs
amid the sorer chastisements of His hand. And a woman, who cultivates
this habit of referring all the minor trials of life to the wise and
benevolent agency of a Heavenly Parent, and daily seeks His sympathy and
aid, to enable her to meet them with a quiet and cheerful spirit, will
soon find it the perennial spring of abiding peace and content.



The discussion of the question of the equality of the sexes, in
intellectual capacity, seems frivolous and useless, both because it can
never be decided, and because there would be no possible advantage in
the decision. But one topic, which is often drawn into this discussion,
is of far more consequence; and that is, the relative importance and
difficulty of the duties a woman is called to perform.

It is generally assumed, and almost as generally conceded, that woman's
business and cares are contracted and trivial; and that the proper
discharge of her duties, demands far less expansion of mind and vigor of
intellect, than the pursuits of the other sex. This idea has prevailed,
because women, as a mass, have never been educated with reference to
their most important duties; while that portion of their employments,
which is of least value, has been regarded as the chief, if not the
sole, concern of a woman. The covering of the body, the conveniences of
residences, and the gratification of the appetite, have been too much
regarded as the sole objects, on which her intellectual powers are to be

But, as society gradually shakes off the remnants of barbarism, and the
intellectual and moral interests of man rise, in estimation, above the
merely sensual, a truer estimate is formed of woman's duties, and of the
measure of intellect requisite for the proper discharge of them. Let any
man, of sense and discernment, become the member of a large household,
in which, a well-educated and pious woman is endeavoring systematically
to discharge her multiform duties; let him fully comprehend all her
cares, difficulties, and perplexities; and it is probable he would
coincide in the opinion, that no statesman, at the head of a nation's
affairs, had more frequent calls for wisdom, firmness, tact,
discrimination, prudence, and versatility of talent, than such a woman.

She has a husband, to whose peculiar tastes and habits she must
accommodate herself; she has children, whose health she must guard,
whose physical constitutions she must study and develope, whose temper
and habits she must regulate, whose principles she must form, whose
pursuits she must direct. She has constantly changing domestics, with
all varieties of temper and habits, whom she must govern, instruct, and
direct; she is required to regulate the finances of the domestic state,
and constantly to adapt expenditures to the means and to the relative
claims of each department. She has the direction of the kitchen, where
ignorance, forgetfulness, and awkwardness, are to be so regulated, that
the various operations shall each start at the right time, and all be in
completeness at the same given hour. She has the claims of society to
meet, calls to receive and return, and the duties of hospitality to
sustain. She has the poor to relieve; benevolent societies to aid; the
schools of her children to inquire and decide about; the care of the
sick; the nursing of infancy; and the endless miscellany of odd items,
constantly recurring in a large family.

Surely, it is a pernicious and mistaken idea, that the duties, which tax
a woman's mind, are petty, trivial, or unworthy of the highest grade of
intellect and moral worth. Instead of allowing this feeling, every woman
should imbibe, from early youth, the impression, that she is training
for the discharge of the most important, the most difficult, and the
most sacred and interesting duties that can possibly employ the highest
intellect. She ought to feel, that her station and responsibilities, in
the great drama of life, are second to none, either as viewed by her
Maker, or in the estimation of all minds whose judgement is most worthy
of respect.

She, who is the mother and housekeeper in a large family, is the
sovereign of an empire, demanding more varied cares, and involving more
difficult duties, than are really exacted of her, who, while she wears
the crown, and professedly regulates the interests of the greatest
nation on earth, finds abundant leisure for theatres, balls, horseraces,
and every gay pursuit.

There is no one thing, more necessary to a housekeeper, in performing
her varied duties, than _a habit of system and order_; and yet, the
peculiarly desultory nature of women's pursuits, and the embarrassments
resulting from the state of domestic service in this Country, render it
very difficult to form such a habit. But it is sometimes the case, that
women, who could and would carry forward a systematic plan of domestic
economy, do not attempt it, simply from a want of knowledge of the
various modes of introducing it. It is with reference to such, that
various modes of securing system and order, which the writer has seen
adopted, will be pointed out.

A wise economy is nowhere more conspicuous, than in the right
_apportionment of time_ to different pursuits. There are duties of a
religious, intellectual, social, and domestic, nature, each having
different relative claims on attention. Unless a person has some general
plan of apportioning these claims, some will intrench on others, and
some, it is probable, will be entirely excluded. Thus, some find
religious, social, and domestic, duties, so numerous, that no time is
given to intellectual improvement. Others, find either social, or
benevolent, or religious, interests, excluded by the extent and variety
of other engagements.

It is wise, therefore, for all persons to devise a general plan, which
they will at least keep in view, and aim to accomplish, and by which, a
proper proportion of time shall be secured, for all the duties of life.

In forming such a plan, every woman must accommodate herself to the
peculiarities of her situation. If she has a large family, and a small
income, she must devote far more time to the simple duty of providing
food and raiment, than would be right were she in affluence, and with a
small family. It is impossible, therefore, to draw out any general plan,
which all can adopt. But there are some _general principles_, which
ought to be the guiding rules, when a woman arranges her domestic
employments. These principles are to be based on Christianity, which
teaches us to "seek first the kingdom of God," and to deem food,
raiment, and the conveniences of life, as of secondary account. Every
woman, then, ought to start with the assumption, that religion is of
more consequence than any worldly concern, and that, whatever else may
be sacrificed, this, shall be the leading object, in all her
arrangements, in respect to time, money, and attention. It is also one
of the plainest requisitions of Christianity, that we devote some of our
time and efforts, to the comfort and improvement of others. There is no
duty, so constantly enforced, both in the Old and New Testament, as the
duty of charity, in dispensing to those, who are destitute of the
blessings we enjoy. In selecting objects of charity, the same rule
applies to others, as to ourselves; their moral and religious interests
are of the highest moment, and for them, as well as for ourselves, we
are to "seek first the kingdom of God."

Another general principle, is, that our intellectual and social
interests are to be preferred, to the mere gratification of taste or
appetite. A portion of time, therefore, must be devoted to the
cultivation of the intellect and the social affections.

Another, is, that the mere gratification of appetite, is to be placed
_last_ in our estimate; so that, when a question arises, as to which
shall be sacrificed, some intellectual, moral, or social, advantage, or
some gratification of sense, we should invariably sacrifice the last.

Another, is, that, as health is indispensable to the discharge of every
duty, nothing, which sacrifices that blessing, is to be allowed, in
order to gain any other advantage or enjoyment. There are emergencies,
when it is right to risk health and life, to save ourselves and others
from greater evils; but these are exceptions, which do not militate
against the general rule. Many persons imagine, that, if they violate
the laws of health, in performing religious or domestic duties, they are
guiltless before God. But such greatly mistake. We as directly violate
the law, "thou shalt not kill," when we do what tends to risk or shorten
our own life, as if we should intentionally run a dagger into a
neighbor. True, we may escape any fatal or permanently injurious
effects, and so may a dagger or bullet miss the mark, or do only
transient injury. But this, in either case, makes the sin none the less.
The life and happiness of all His creatures are dear to our Creator; and
He is as much displeased, when we injure our own interests, as when we
injure those of others. The idea, therefore, that we are excusable, if
we harm no one but ourselves, is false and pernicious. These, then, are
the general principles, to guide a woman in systematizing her duties and

The Creator of all things, is a Being of perfect system and order; and,
to aid us in our duty, in this respect, He has divided our time, by a
regularly returning day of rest from worldly business. In following
this example, the intervening six days may be subdivided to secure
similar benefits. In doing this, a certain portion of time must be given
to procure the means of livelihood, and for preparing food, raiment, and
dwellings. To these objects, some must devote more, and others less,
attention. The remainder of time not necessarily thus employed, might be
divided somewhat in this manner: The leisure of two afternoons and
evenings, could be devoted to religious and benevolent objects, such as
religious meetings, charitable associations, school visiting, and
attention to the sick and poor. The leisure of two other days, might be
devoted to intellectual improvement, and the pursuits of taste. The
leisure of another day, might be devoted to social enjoyments, in making
or receiving visits; and that of another, to miscellaneous domestic
pursuits, not included in the other particulars.

It is probable, that few persons could carry out such an arrangement,
very strictly; but every one can make a systematic apportionment of
time, and at least _aim_ at accomplishing it; and they can also compare
the time which they actually devote to these different objects, with
such a general outline, for the purpose of modifying any mistaken

Without attempting any such systematic employment of time, and carrying
it out, so far as they can control circumstances, most women are rather
driven along, by the daily occurrences of life, so that, instead of
being the intelligent regulators of their own time, they are the mere
sport of circumstances. There is nothing, which so distinctly marks the
difference between weak and strong minds, as the fact, whether they
control circumstances, or circumstances control them.

It is very much to be feared, that the apportionment of time, actually
made by most women, exactly inverts the order, required by reason and
Christianity. Thus, the furnishing a needless variety of food, the
conveniences of dwellings, and the adornments of dress, often take a
larger portion of time, than is given to any other object. Next after
this, comes intellectual improvement; and, last of all, benevolence and

It may be urged, that it is indispensable for most persons to give more
time to earn a livelihood, and to prepare food, raiment, and dwellings,
than to any other object. But it may be asked, how much of the time,
devoted to these objects, is employed in preparing varieties of food,
not necessary, but rather injurious, and how much is spent for those
parts of dress and furniture not indispensable, and merely ornamental?
Let a woman subtract from her domestic employments, all the time, given
to pursuits which are of no use, except as they gratify a taste for
ornament, or minister increased varieties, to tempt the appetite, and
she will find, that much, which she calls "domestic duties," and which
prevent her attention to intellectual, benevolent, and religious,
objects, should be called by a very different name. No woman has a right
to give up attention to the higher interests of herself and others, for
the ornaments of taste, or the gratification of the palate. To a certain
extent, these lower objects are lawful and desirable; but, when they
intrude on nobler interests, they become selfish and degrading. Every
woman, then, when employing her hands, in ornamenting her person, her
children, or her house, ought to calculate, whether she has devoted _as
much_ time, to the intellectual and moral wants of herself and others.
If she has not, she may know that she is doing wrong, and that her
system, for apportioning her time and pursuits, should be altered.

Some persons, endeavor to systematize their pursuits, by apportioning
them to particular hours of each day. For example, a certain period
before breakfast, is given to devotional duties; after breakfast,
certain hours are devoted to exercise and domestic employments; other
hours, to sewing, or reading, or visiting; and others, to benevolent
duties. But, in most cases, it is more difficult to systematize the
hours of each day, than it is to secure some regular division of the

In regard to the minutiæ of domestic arrangements, the writer has known
the following methods to be adopted. _Monday_, with some of the best
housekeepers, is devoted to preparing for the labors of the week. Any
extra cooking, the purchasing of articles to be used during the week,
the assorting of clothes for the wash, and mending such as would be
injured without;--these, and similar items, belong to this day.
_Tuesday_ is devoted to washing, and _Wednesday_ to ironing. On
_Thursday_, the ironing is finished off, the clothes are folded and put
away, and all articles, which need mending, are put in the mending
basket, and attended to. _Friday_ is devoted to sweeping and
housecleaning. On _Saturday_, and especially the last Saturday of every
month, every department is put in order; the castors and table furniture
are regulated, the pantry and cellar inspected, the trunks, drawers, and
closets arranged, and every thing about the house, put in order for
_Sunday_. All the cooking, needed for Sunday, is also prepared. By this
regular recurrence of a particular time, for inspecting every thing,
nothing is forgotten till ruined by neglect.

Another mode of systematizing, relates to providing proper supplies of
conveniences, and proper places in which to keep them. Thus, some ladies
keep a large closet, in which are placed the tubs, pails, dippers,
soap-dishes, starch, bluing, clothes-line, clothes-pins, and every other
article used in washing; and in the same, or another, place, are kept
every convenience for ironing. In the sewing department, a trunk, with
suitable partitions, is provided, in which are placed, each in its
proper place, white thread of all sizes, colored thread, yarns for
mending, colored and black sewing-silks and twist, tapes and bobbins of
all sizes, white and colored welting-cords, silk braids and cords,
needles of all sizes, papers of pins, remnants of linen and colored
cambric, a supply of all kinds of buttons used in the family, black and
white hooks and eyes, a yard measure, and all the patterns used in
cutting and fitting. These are done up in separate parcels, and
labelled. In another trunk, are kept all pieces used in mending,
arranged in order, so that any article can be found, without loss of
time. A trunk, like the first mentioned, will save many steps, and often
much time and perplexity; while by purchasing articles thus by the
quantity, they come much cheaper, than if bought in little portions as
they are wanted. Such a trunk should be kept locked, and a smaller
supply, for current use, retained in a workbasket.

A full supply of all conveniences in the kitchen and cellar, and a place
appointed for each article, very much facilitates domestic labor. For
want of this, much vexation and loss of time is occasioned, while
seeking vessels in use, or in cleansing those employed by different
persons, for various purposes. It would be far better, for a lady to
give up some expensive article, in the parlor, and apply the money, thus
saved, for kitchen conveniences, than to have a stinted supply, where
the most labor is to be performed. If our Countrywomen would devote more
to comfort and convenience, and less to show, it would be a great
improvement. Expensive mirrors and pier-tables in the parlor, and an
unpainted, gloomy, ill-furnished kitchen, not unfrequently are found
under the same roof.

Another important item, in systematic economy, is, the apportioning of
_regular_ employment to the various members of a family. If a
housekeeper can secure the cooperation of _all_ her family, she will
find, that "many hands make light work." There is no greater mistake,
than in bringing up children to feel that they must be taken care of,
and waited on, by others, without any corresponding obligations on their
part. The extent, to which young children can be made useful, in a
family, would seem surprising, to those who have never seen a
_systematic_ and _regular_ plan for securing their services. The writer
has been in a family, where a little girl, of eight or nine years of
age, washed and dressed herself and young brother, and made their small
beds, before breakfast, set and cleared all the tables, at meals, with a
little help from a grown person in moving tables and spreading cloths,
while all the dusting of parlors and chambers was also neatly performed
by her. A brother, of ten years old, brought in and piled all the wood,
used in the kitchen and parlor, brushed the boots and shoes, neatly,
went on errands, and took all the care of the poultry. They were
children, whose parents could afford to hire servants to do this, but
who chose to have their children grow up healthy and industrious, while
proper instruction, system, and encouragement, made these services
rather a pleasure, than otherwise, to the children.

Some parents pay their children for such services; but this is
hazardous, as tending to make them feel that they are not bound to be
helpful without pay, and also as tending to produce a hoarding,
money-making spirit. But, where children have no hoarding propensities,
and need to acquire a sense of the value of property, it may be well to
let them earn money, for some extra services, rather as a favor. When
this is done, they should be taught to spend it for others, as well as
for themselves; and in this way, a generous and liberal spirit will be

There are some mothers, who take pains to teach their boys most of the
domestic arts, which their sisters learn. The writer has seen boys,
mending their own garments, and aiding their mother or sisters in the
kitchen, with great skill and adroitness; and at an early age, they
usually very much relish joining in such occupations. The sons of such
mothers, in their college life, or in roaming about the world, or in
nursing a sick wife or infant, find occasion to bless the forethought
and kindness, which prepared them for such emergencies. Few things are
in worse taste, than for a man needlessly to busy himself in women's
work; and yet a man never appears in a more interesting attitude, than
when, by skill in such matters, he can save a mother or wife from care
and suffering. The more a boy is taught to use his hands, in every
variety of domestic employment, the more his faculties, both of mind and
body, are developed; for mechanical pursuits exercise the intellect, as
well as the hands. The early training of New-England boys, in which they
turn their hand to almost every thing, is one great reason of the quick
perceptions, versatility of mind, and mechanical skill, for which that
portion of our Countrymen is distinguished.

The writer has known one mode of systematizing the aid of the older
children in a family, which, in some cases of very large families, it
may be well to imitate. In the case referred to, when the oldest
daughter was eight or nine years old, an infant sister was given to her,
as her special charge. She tended it, made and mended its clothes,
taught it to read, and was its nurse and guardian, through all its
childhood. Another infant was given to the next daughter, and thus the
children were all paired in this interesting relation. In addition to
the relief thus afforded to the mother, the elder children were in this
way qualified for their future domestic relations, and both older and
younger bound to each other by peculiar ties of tenderness and

In offering these examples, of various modes of systematizing, one
suggestion may be worthy of attention. It is not unfrequently the case,
that ladies, who find themselves cumbered with oppressive cares, after
reading remarks on the benefits of system, immediately commence the task
of arranging their pursuits, with great vigor and hope. They divide the
day into regular periods, and give each hour its duty; they systematize
their work, and endeavor to bring every thing into a regular routine.
But, in a short time, they find themselves baffled, discouraged, and
disheartened, and finally relapse into their former desultory ways, in
a sort of resigned despair. The difficulty, in such cases, is, that they
attempt too much at a time. There is nothing, which so much depends upon
_habit_, as a systematic mode of performing duty; and, where no such
habit has been formed, it is impossible for a novice to start, at once,
into a universal mode of systematizing, which none but an adept could
carry through. The only way for such persons, is, to begin with a little
at a time. Let them select some three or four things, and resolutely
attempt to conquer at these points. In time, a habit will be formed, of
doing a few things at regular periods, and in a systematic way. Then it
will be easy to add a few more; and thus, by a gradual process, the
object can be secured, which it would be vain to attempt, by a more
summary course. Early rising is almost an indispensable condition to
success, in such an effort; but, where a woman lacks either the health
or the energy to secure a period for devotional duties before breakfast,
let her select that hour of the day, in which she will be least liable
to interruption, and let her then seek strength and wisdom from the only
true Source. At this time, let her take a pen, and make a list of all
the things which she considers as duties. Then, let a calculation be
made, whether there be time enough, in the day or the week, for all
these duties. If there be not, let the least important be stricken from
the list, as not being duties, and which must be omitted. In doing this,
let a woman remember, that, though "what we shall eat, and what we shall
drink, and wherewithal we shall be clothed," are matters requiring due
attention, they are very apt to obtain a wrong relative importance,
while social, intellectual, and moral, interests, receive too little

In this Country, eating, dressing, and household furniture and
ornaments, take far too large a place in the estimate of relative
importance; and it is probable, that most women could modify their views
and practice, so as to come nearer to the Saviour's requirements. No
woman has a right to put a stitch of ornament on any article of dress
or furniture, or to provide one superfluity in food, until she is sure
she can secure time for all her social, intellectual, benevolent, and
religious, duties. If a woman will take the trouble to make such a
calculation as this, she will usually find that she has time enough, to
perform all her duties easily and well.

It is impossible, for a conscientious woman to secure that peaceful
mind, and cheerful enjoyment of life, which all should seek, who is
constantly finding her duties jarring with each other, and much
remaining undone, which she feels that she ought to do. In consequence
of this, there will be a secret uneasiness, which will throw a shade
over the whole current of life, never to be removed, till she so
efficiently defines and regulates her duties, that she can fulfil them

And here the writer would urge upon young ladies, the importance of
forming habits of system, while unembarrassed with those multiplied
cares, which will make the task so much more difficult and hopeless.
Every young lady can systematize her pursuits, to a certain extent. She
can have a particular day for mending her wardrobe, and for arranging
her trunks, closets, and drawers. She can keep her workbasket, her desk
at school, and all her other conveniences, in their proper places, and
in regular order. She can have regular periods for reading, walking,
visiting, study, and domestic pursuits. And, by following this method,
in youth, she will form a taste for regularity, and a habit of system,
which will prove a blessing to her, through life.



It is probable, that there is no point of duty, where conscientious
persons differ more in opinion, or where they find it more difficult to
form discriminating and decided views, than on the matter of charity.
That we are bound to give _some_ of our time, money, and efforts, to
relieve the destitute, all allow. But, as to how much we are to give,
and on whom our charities shall be bestowed, many a reflecting mind has
been at a loss. Yet it seems very desirable, that, in reference to a
duty so constantly and so strenuously urged by the Supreme Ruler, we
should be able so to fix metes and bounds, as to keep a conscience void
of offence, and to free the mind from disquieting fears of deficiency.

The writer has found no other topic of investigation so beset with
difficulty, and so absolutely without the range of definite rules, which
can apply to all, in all circumstances. But on this, as on a previous
topic, there seem to be _general principles_, by the aid of which, any
candid mind, sincerely desirous of obeying the commands of Christ,
however much self-denial may be involved, can arrive at definite
conclusions, as to its own individual obligations, so that, when these
are fulfilled, the mind may be at peace.

But, for a mind that is worldly, living mainly to seek its own
pleasures, instead of living to please God, no principles can be so
fixed, as not to leave a ready escape from all obligation. Such minds,
either by indolence (and consequent ignorance) or by sophistry, will
convince themselves, that a life of engrossing self-indulgence, with
perhaps the gift of a few dollars, and a few hours of time, may suffice,
to fulfil the requisitions of the Eternal Judge.

For such minds, no reasonings will avail, till the heart is so changed,
that, to learn the will and follow the example of Jesus Christ, become
the leading objects of interest and effort. It is to aid those, who
profess to possess this temper of mind, that the following suggestions
are offered.

The first consideration, which gives definiteness to this subject, is, a
correct view of the object for which we are placed in this world. A
great many even of professed Christians, seem to be acting on the
supposition, that the object of life is to secure as much as possible
of all the various enjoyments placed within reach. Not so, teaches
reason or revelation. From these, we learn, that, though the happiness
of His creatures, is the end for which God created and sustains them,
yet, that this happiness depends, not on the various modes of
gratification put within our reach, but mainly on _character_. A man may
possess all the resources for enjoyment which this world can afford, and
yet feel that "all is vanity and vexation of spirit," and that he is
supremely wretched. Another, may be in want of all things, and yet
possess that living spring of benevolence, faith, and hope, which will
make an Eden of the darkest prison.

In order to be perfectly happy, man must attain that character, which
Christ exhibited; and the nearer he approaches it, the more will
happiness reign in his breast.

But what was the grand peculiarity of the character of Christ? It was
_self-denying benevolence_. He came not to "seek His own;" He "went
about doing good," and this was His "meat and drink;" that is, it was
this which sustained the health and life of His mind, as food and drink
sustain the health and life of the body. Now, the mind of man is so
made, that it can gradually be transformed into the same likeness. A
selfish being, who, for a whole life, has been nourishing habits of
indolent self-indulgence, can, by taking Christ as his example, by
communion with Him, and by daily striving to imitate His character and
conduct, form such a temper of mind, that "doing good" will become the
chief and highest source of enjoyment. And this heavenly principle will
grow stronger and stronger, until self-denial loses the more painful
part of its character, and then, _living to make happiness_, will be so
delightful and absorbing a pursuit, that all exertions, regarded as the
means to this end, will be like the joyous efforts of men, when they
strive for a prize or a crown, with the full hope of success.

In this view of the subject, efforts and self-denial, for the good of
others, are to be regarded, not merely as duties enjoined for the
benefit of others, but as the moral training indispensable to the
formation of that character, on which depends our own happiness. This
view, exhibits the full meaning of the Saviour's declaration, "how
hardly shall they that have riches enter into the kingdom of God!" He
had before taught, that the kingdom of Heaven consisted, not in such
enjoyments as the worldly seek, but, in the temper of self-denying
benevolence, like His own; and, as the rich have far greater temptations
to indolent self-indulgence, they are far less likely to acquire this
temper, than those, who, by limited means, are inured to some degree of

But, on this point, one important distinction needs to be made; and that
is, between the self-denial, which has no other aim than mere
self-mortification, and that, which is exercised to secure greater good
to ourselves and others. The first is the foundation of monasticism,
penances, and all other forms of asceticism; the latter, only, is that
which Christianity requires.

A second consideration, which may give definiteness to this subject, is,
that the formation of a perfect character, involves, not the
extermination of any principles of our nature, but rather the regulating
of them, according to the rules of reason and religion; so that the
lower propensities shall always be kept subordinate to nobler
principles. Thus, we are not to aim at destroying our appetites, or at
needlessly denying them, but rather so to regulate them, that they shall
best secure the objects for which they were implanted. We are not to
annihilate the love of praise and admiration; but so to control it, that
the favor of God shall be regarded more than the estimation of men. We
are not to extirpate the principle of curiosity, which leads us to
acquire knowledge; but so to direct it, that all our acquisitions shall
be useful and not frivolous or injurious. And thus, with all the
principles of the mind, God has implanted no desires in our
constitution, which are evil and pernicious. On the contrary, all our
constitutional propensities, either of mind or body, He designed we
should gratify, whenever no evils would thence result, either to
ourselves or others. Such passions as envy, ambition, pride, revenge,
and hatred, are to be exterminated; for they are either excesses or
excrescences: not created by God, but rather the result of our own
neglect to form habits of benevolence and self-control.

In deciding the rules of our conduct, therefore, we are ever to bear in
mind, that the developement of the nobler principles, and the
subjugation of inferior propensities to them, is to be the main object
of effort, both for ourselves and for others. And, in conformity with
this, in all our plans, we are to place religious and moral interests as
first in estimation, our social and intellectual interests, next, and
our physical gratifications, as subordinate to all.

A third consideration, is, that, though the means for sustaining life
and health are to be regarded as necessaries, without which no other
duties can be performed, yet, that a very large portion of the time,
spent by most persons, in easy circumstances, for food, raiment, and
dwellings, are for mere _superfluities_, which _are right, when they do
not involve the sacrifice of higher interests_, and _wrong, when they
do_. Life and health can be sustained in the humblest dwellings, with
the plainest dress, and the simplest food; and, after taking from our
means, what is necessary for life and health, the remainder is to be so
divided, that the larger portion shall be given to supply the moral and
intellectual wants of ourselves and others, and the smaller share to
procure those additional gratifications, of taste and appetite, which
are desirable, but not indispensable. Mankind, thus far, have never made
this apportionment of their means; yet, just as fast as they have risen
from a savage state, mere physical wants have been made, to an
increasing extent, subordinate to higher objects.

Another very important consideration, is, that, in urging the duty of
charity, and the prior claims of moral and religious objects, no rule of
duty should be maintained, which it would not be right and wise for
_all_ to follow. And we are to test the wisdom of any general rule, by
inquiring what would be the result, if all mankind should practise
according to it. In view of this, we are enabled to judge of the
correctness of those, who maintain, that, to be consistent, men
believing in the eternal destruction of all those of our race who are
not brought under the influence of the Christian system, should give up,
not merely the elegances, but all the superfluities, of life, and devote
the whole of their means, not indispensable to life and health, for the
propagation of Christianity. But, if this is the duty of any, it is the
duty of all; and we are to inquire what would be the result, if all
conscientious persons gave up the use of all superfluities. Suppose,
that two millions of the people in the United States, were conscientious
persons, and relinquished the use of every thing not absolutely
necessary to life and health. It would instantly throw out of employment
one half of the whole community. The manufacturers, mechanics,
merchants, agriculturists, and all the agencies they employ, would be
beggared, and one half of those not reduced to poverty, would be obliged
to spend all their extra means, in simply supplying necessaries to the
other half. The use of superfluities, therefore, to a certain extent, is
as indispensable to promote industry, virtue, and religion, as any
direct giving of money or time; and it is owing entirely to a want of
reflection, and of comprehensive views, that any men ever make so great
a mistake, as is here exhibited.

Instead, then, of urging a rule of duty which is at once irrational and
impracticable, there is another course, which commends itself to the
understandings of all. For whatever may be the _practice_, of
intelligent men, they universally concede the _principle_, that our
physical gratifications should always be made subordinate to social,
intellectual, and moral, advantages. And all that is required, for the
advancement of our whole race to the most perfect state of society, is,
simply, that men should act in agreement with this principle. And, if
only a very small portion, of the most intelligent of our race, should
act according to this rule, under the control of Christian benevolence,
the immense supplies, furnished, for the general good, would be far
beyond what any would imagine, who had never made any calculations on
the subject. In this Nation, alone, suppose the one million and more, of
professed followers of Christ, should give a larger portion of their
means, for the social, intellectual, and moral, wants of mankind, than
for the superfluities that minister to taste, convenience, and appetite;
it would be enough to furnish all the schools, colleges, Bibles,
ministers, and missionaries, that the whole world could demand; or, at
least, it would be far more, than properly qualified agents to
administer it, could employ.

But, it may be objected, that, though this view is one, which, in the
abstract, looks plausible and rational, not one in a thousand, can
practically adopt it. How few keep any account, at all, of their current
expenses! How impossible it is, to determine, exactly, what are
necessaries, and what are superfluities! And in regard to women, how few
have the control of an income, so as not to be bound by the wishes of a
parent or a husband!

In reference to these difficulties, the first remark is, that we are
never under obligations to do, what is entirely out of our power, so
that those persons, who have no power to regulate their expenses or
their charities, are under no sort of obligation to attempt it. The
second remark is, that, when a rule of duty is discovered, we are bound
to _aim_ at it, and to fulfil it, just so far as we can. We have no
right to throw it aside, because we shall find some difficult cases,
when we come to apply it. The third remark is, that no person can tell
how much can be done, till a faithful trial has been made. If a woman
has never kept any accounts, nor attempted to regulate her expenditures
by the right rule, nor used her influence with those that control her
plans, to secure this object, she has no right to say how much she can,
or cannot, do, till after a fair trial has been made.

In attempting such a trial, the following method can be taken. Let a
woman keep an account of all she spends, for herself and her family, for
a year, arranging the items under three general heads. Under the first,
put all articles for food, raiment, rent, wages, and all conveniences.
Under the second, place all sums paid in securing an education, and
books, and other intellectual advantages. Under the third head, place
all that is spent for benevolence and religion. At the end of the year,
the first and largest account will show the mixed items of necessaries
and superfluities, which can be arranged, so as to gain some sort of
idea how much has been spent for superfluities, and how much for
necessaries. Then, by comparing what is spent for superfluities, with
what is spent for intellectual and moral advantages, data will be
gained, for judging of the past, and regulating the future.

Does a woman say she cannot do this? let her inquire, whether the offer
of a thousand dollars, as a reward for attempting it one year, would not
make her undertake to do it; and, if so, let her decide, in her own
mind, which is most valuable, a clear conscience, and the approbation of
God, in this effort to do His will, or one thousand dollars. And let her
do it, with this warning of the Saviour before her eyes,--"No man can
serve two masters." "Ye cannot serve God and Mammon."

Is it objected, How can we decide between superfluities and necessaries,
in this list? it is replied, that we are not required to judge exactly,
in all cases. Our duty is, to use the means in our power to assist us in
forming a correct judgement; to seek the Divine aid in freeing our minds
from indolence and selfishness; and then to judge as well as we can, in
our endeavors rightly to apportion and regulate our expenses. Many
persons seem to feel that they are bound to do better than they know
how. But God is not so hard a Master; and, after we have used all proper
means to learn the right way, if we then follow it, according to our
ability, we do wrong to feel misgivings, or to blame ourselves, if
results come out differently from what seems desirable. The results of
our actions, alone, can never prove us deserving of blame. For men are
often so placed, that, owing to lack of intellect or means, it is
impossible for them to decide correctly. To use all the means of
knowledge within our reach, and then to judge, with a candid and
conscientious spirit, is all that God requires; and, when we have done
this, and the event seems to come out wrong, we should never wish that
we had decided otherwise. For it is the same as wishing that we had not
followed the dictates of judgement and conscience. As this is a world
designed for discipline and trial, untoward events are never to be
construed as indications of the obliquity of our past decisions.

But it is probable, that a great portion of the women of this Nation,
cannot secure any such systematic mode of regulating their expenses. To
such, the writer would propose one inquiry; cannot you calculate how
much _time_ and _money_ you spend for what is merely ornamental, and not
necessary, for yourself, your children, and your house? Cannot you
compare this with the time and money you spend for intellectual and
benevolent purposes? and will not this show the need of some change? In
making this examination, is not this brief rule, deducible from the
principles before laid down, the one which should regulate you? Every
person does right, in spending _some_ portion of time and means in
securing the conveniences and adornments of taste; but the amount should
never exceed what is spent in securing our own moral and intellectual
improvement, nor exceed what is spent in benevolent efforts to supply
the physical and moral wants of our fellow-men.

In making an examination on this subject, it is sometimes the case, that
a woman will count among the _necessaries_ of life, all the various
modes of adorning the person or house, practised in the circle in which
she moves; and, after enumerating the many _duties_ which demand
attention, counting these as a part, she will come to the conclusion,
that she has no time, and but little money, to devote to personal
improvement, or to benevolent enterprises. This surely is not in
agreement with the requirements of the Saviour, who calls on us to seek
for others, as well as ourselves, _first of all_, "the kingdom of God,
and His righteousness."

In order to act in accordance with the rule here presented, it is true,
that many would be obliged to give up the idea of conforming to the
notions and customs of those, with whom they associate, and compelled to
adopt the maxim, "be not conformed to this world." In many cases, it
would involve an entire change in the style of living. And the writer
has the happiness of knowing more cases than one, where persons, who
have come to similar views, on this subject, have given up large and
expensive establishments, disposed of their carriages, dismissed a
portion of their domestics, and modified all their expenditures, that
they might keep a pure conscience, and regulate their charities more
according to the requirements of Christianity. And there are persons,
well known in the religious world, who save themselves all labor of
minute calculation, by devoting so large a portion of their time and
means to benevolent objects, that they find no difficulty in knowing
that they give more for religious, benevolent, and intellectual,
purposes, than for superfluities.

In deciding what particular objects shall receive our benefactions,
there are also general principles to guide us. The first, is that
presented by our Saviour, when, after urging the great law of
benevolence, He was asked, "and who is my neighbor?" His reply, in the
parable of 'the Good Samaritan,' teaches us, that any human being, whose
wants are brought to our knowledge, is our neighbor. The wounded man was
not only a stranger, but he belonged to a foreign nation, peculiarly
hated; and he had no claim, except that his wants were brought to the
knowledge of the wayfaring man. From this, we learn, that the destitute,
of all nations, become our neighbors, as soon as their wants are brought
to our knowledge.

Another general principle, is this, that those who are most in need,
must be relieved, in preference to those who are less destitute. On this
principle, it is, that we think the followers of Christ should give more
to supply those who are suffering for want of the bread of eternal life,
than for those who are deprived of physical enjoyments. And another
reason for this preference, is, the fact, that many, who give in
charity, have made such imperfect advances in civilization and
Christianity, that the intellectual and moral wants of our race make but
a feeble impression on the mind. Relate a pitiful tale of a family,
reduced to live, for weeks, on potatoes, only, and many a mind would
awake to deep sympathy, and stretch forth the hand of charity. But
describe cases, where the immortal mind is pining in stupidity and
ignorance, or racked with the fever of baleful passions, and how small
the number, so elevated in sentiment, and so enlarged in their views, as
to appreciate and sympathize in these far greater misfortunes! The
intellectual and moral wants of our fellow-men, therefore, should claim
the first place in our attention, both because they are most important,
and because they are most neglected.

Another consideration, to be borne in mind, is, that, in this Country,
there is much less real need of charity, in supplying physical
necessities, than is generally supposed, by those who have not learned
the more excellent way. This Land is so abundant in supplies, and labor
is in such demand, that every healthy person can earn a comfortable
support. And if all the poor were instantly made virtuous, it is
probable that there would be no physical wants, which could not readily
be supplied by the immediate friends of each sufferer. The sick, the
aged, and the orphan, would be the only objects of charity. In this
view of the case, the primary effort, in relieving the poor, should be,
to furnish them the means of earning their own support, and to supply
them with those moral influences, which are most effectual in securing
virtue and industry.

Another point to be attended to, is, the importance of maintaining a
system of _associated_ charities. There is no point, in which the
economy of charity has more improved, than in the present mode of
combining many small contributions, for sustaining enlarged and
systematic plans of charity. If all the half-dollars, which are now
contributed to aid in organized systems of charity, were returned to the
donors, to be applied by the agency and discretion of each, thousands
and thousands of the treasures, now employed to promote the moral and
intellectual wants of mankind, would become entirely useless. In a
democracy, like ours, where few are very rich, and the majority are in
comfortable circumstances, this collecting and dispensing of drops and
rills, is the mode, by which, in imitation of Nature, the dews and
showers are to distil on parched and desert lands. And every person,
while earning a pittance to unite with many more, may be cheered with
the consciousness of sustaining a grand system of operations, which must
have the most decided influence, in raising all mankind to that perfect
state of society, which Christianity is designed to secure.

Another consideration, relates to the indiscriminate bestowal of
charity. Persons, who have taken pains to inform themselves, and who
devote their whole time to dispensing charities, unite in declaring,
that this is one of the most fruitful sources of indolence, vice, and
poverty. From several of these, the writer has learned, that, by their
own personal investigations, they have ascertained, that there are large
establishments of idle and wicked persons, in most of our cities, who
associate together, to support themselves by every species of
imposition. They hire large houses, and live in constant rioting, on the
means thus obtained. Among them, are women who have, or who hire the
use of, infant children; others, who are blind, or maimed, or deformed,
or who can adroitly feign such infirmities, and, by these means of
exciting pity, and by artful tales of wo, they collect alms, both in
city and country, to spend in all manner of gross and guilty
indulgences. Meantime, many persons, finding themselves often duped by
impostors, refuse to give at all; and thus many benefactions are
withdrawn, which a wise economy in charity would have secured. For this,
and other reasons, it is wise and merciful, to adopt the general rule,
never to give alms, till we have had some opportunity of knowing how
they will be spent. There are exceptions to this, as to every general
rule, which a person of discretion can determine. But the practice, so
common among benevolent persons, of giving, at least a trifle, to all
who ask, lest, perchance, they may turn away some, who are really
sufferers, is one, which causes more sin and misery than it cures.

The writer has never known any system for dispensing charity, so
successful, as the one which, in many places, has been adopted in
connection with the distribution of tracts. By this method, a town or
city is divided into districts; and each district is committed to the
care of two ladies, whose duty it is, to call on each family and leave a
tract, and make that the occasion for entering into conversation, and
learning the situation of all residents in the district. By this method,
the ignorant, the vicious, and the poor, are discovered, and their
physical, intellectual, and moral, wants, are investigated. In some
places, where the writer has resided or visited, each person retained
the same district, year after year, so that every poor family in the
place was under the watch and care of some intelligent and benevolent
lady, who used all her influence to secure a proper education for the
children, to furnish them with suitable reading, to encourage habits of
industry and economy, and to secure regular attendance on public
religious instruction. Thus, the rich and the poor were brought in
contact, in a way advantageous to both parties; and, if such a system
could be universally adopted, more would be done for the prevention of
poverty and vice, than all the wealth of the Nation could avail for
their relief. But this plan cannot be successfully carried out, in this
manner, unless there is a large proportion of intelligent, benevolent,
and self-denying, persons; and the mere distribution of tracts, without
the other parts of the plan, is of very little avail.

But there is one species of charity, which needs especial consideration.
It is that, which induces us to refrain from judging of the means and
the relative charities of other persons. There have been such indistinct
notions, and so many different standards of duty, on this subject, that
it is rare for two persons to think exactly alike, in regard to the rule
of duty. Each person is bound to inquire and judge for himself, as to
his own duty or deficiencies; but as both the resources, and the amount
of the actual charities, of other men are beyond our ken, it is as
indecorous, as it is uncharitable, to sit in judgement on their



_On Economy of Time._

The value of time, and our obligation to spend every hour for some
useful end, are what few minds properly realize. And those, who have the
highest sense of their obligations in this respect, sometimes greatly
misjudge in their estimate of what are useful and proper modes of
employing time. This arises from limited views of the importance of some
pursuits, which they would deem frivolous and useless, but which are,
in reality, necessary to preserve the health of body and mind, and those
social affections, which it is very important to cherish. Christianity
teaches, that, for all the time afforded us, we must give account to
God; and that we have no right to waste a single hour. But time, which
is spent in rest or amusement, is often as usefully employed, as if it
were devoted to labor or devotion. In employing our time, we are to make
suitable allowance for sleep, for preparing and taking food, for
securing the means of a livelihood, for intellectual improvement, for
exercise and amusement, for social enjoyments, and for benevolent and
religious duties. And it is the _right apportionment_ of time, to these
various duties, which constitutes its true economy.

In making this apportionment, we are bound by the same rules, as relate
to the use of property. We are to employ whatever portion is necessary
to sustain life and health, as the first duty; and the remainder we are
so to apportion, that our highest interests, shall receive the greatest
allotment, and our physical gratifications, the least.

The laws of the Supreme Ruler, when He became the civil as well as the
religious Head of the Jewish theocracy, furnish an example, which it
would be well for all attentively to consider, when forming plans for
the apportionment of time and property. To properly estimate this
example, it must be borne in mind, that the main object of God, was, to
preserve His religion among the Jewish nation; and that they were not
required to take any means to propagate it among other nations, as
Christians are now required to extend Christianity. So low were they, in
the scale of civilization and mental developement, that a system, which
confined them to one spot, as an agricultural people, and prevented
their growing very rich, or having extensive commerce with other
nations, was indispensable to prevent their relapsing into the low
idolatries and vices of the nations around them.

The proportion of time and property, which every Jew was required to
devote to intellectual, benevolent, and religious purposes, was as

In regard to property, they were required to give one tenth of all their
yearly income, to support the Levites, the priests, and the religious
service. Next, they were required to give the first fruits of all their
corn, wine, oil, and fruits, and the first-born of all their cattle, for
the Lord's treasury, to be employed for the priests, the widow, the
fatherless, and the stranger. The first-born, also, of their children,
were the Lord's, and were to be redeemed by a specified sum, paid into
the sacred treasury. Besides this, they were required to bring a
freewill offering to God, every time they went up to the three great
yearly festivals. In addition to this, regular yearly sacrifices, of
cattle and fowls, were required of each family, and occasional
sacrifices for certain sins or ceremonial impurities. In reaping their
fields, they were required to leave unreaped, for the poor, the corners;
not to glean their fields, olive-yards, or vineyards; and, if a sheaf
was left, by mistake, they were not to return for it, but leave it for
the poor. When a man sent away a servant, he was thus charged: "Furnish
him liberally out of thy flock, and out of thy floor, and out of thy
wine-press." When a poor man came to borrow money, they were forbidden
to deny him, or to take any interest; and if, at the sabbatical, or
seventh, year, he could not pay, the debt was to be cancelled. And to
this command, is added the significant caution, "Beware that there be
not a thought in thy wicked heart, saying, the seventh year, the year of
release, is at hand; and thine eye be evil against thy poor brother, and
thou givest him nought; and he cry unto the Lord against thee, and it be
sin unto thee. Thou shalt surely give him," "because that for this thing
the Lord thy God shall bless thee in all thy works, and in all that thou
puttest thine hand unto." Besides this, the Levites were distributed
through the land, with the intention that they should be instructors and
priests in every part of the nation. Thus, one twelfth of the people
were set apart, having no landed property, to be priests and teachers;
and the other tribes were required to support them liberally.

In regard to the time taken from secular pursuits, for the support of
religion, an equally liberal amount was demanded. In the first place,
one seventh part of their time was taken for the weekly sabbath, when no
kind of work was to be done. Then the whole nation were required to
meet, at the appointed place, three times a year, which, including their
journeys, and stay there, occupied eight weeks, or another seventh part
of their time. Then the sabbatical year, when no agricultural labor was
to be done, took another seventh of their time from their regular
pursuits, as they were an agricultural people. This was the amount of
time and property demanded by God, simply to sustain religion and
morality within the bounds of that nation. Christianity demands the
spread of its blessings to all mankind, and so the restrictions laid on
the Jews are withheld, and all our wealth and time, not needful for our
own best interest, is to be employed in improving the condition of our

In deciding respecting the rectitude of our pursuits, we are bound to
aim at some practical good, as the ultimate object. With every duty of
this life, our benevolent Creator has connected some species of
enjoyment, to draw us to perform it. Thus, the palate is gratified, by
performing the duty of nourishing our bodies; the principle of curiosity
is gratified, in pursuing useful knowledge; the desire of approbation is
gratified, when we perform benevolent and social duties; and every other
duty has an alluring enjoyment connected with it. But the great mistake
of mankind has consisted in seeking the pleasures, connected with these
duties, as the sole aim, without reference to the main end that should
be held in view, and to which the enjoyment should be made subservient.
Thus, men seek to gratify the palate, without reference to the question
whether the body is properly nourished; and follow after knowledge,
without inquiring whether it ministers to good or evil.

But, in gratifying the implanted desires of our nature, we are bound so
to restrain ourselves, by reason and conscience, as always to seek the
main objects of existence--the highest good of ourselves and others; and
never to sacrifice this, for the mere gratification of our sensual
desires. We are to gratify appetite, just so far as is consistent with
health and usefulness; and the desire for knowledge, just so far as will
enable us to do most good by our influence and efforts; and no farther.
We are to seek social intercourse, to that extent, which will best
promote domestic enjoyment and kindly feelings among neighbors and
friends; and we are to pursue exercise and amusement, only so far as
will best sustain the vigor of body and mind. For the right
apportionment of time, to these and various other duties, we are to give
an account to our Creator and final Judge.

Instead of attempting to give any very specific rules on this subject,
some modes of economizing time will be suggested. The most powerful of
all agencies, in this matter, is, that habit of system and order, in all
our pursuits, which has been already pointed out. It is probable, that a
regular and systematic employment of time, will enable a person to
accomplish thrice the amount of labor, that could otherwise be

Another mode of economizing time, is, by uniting several objects in one
employment. Thus, exercise, or charitable efforts, can be united with
social enjoyments, as is done in associations for sewing, or visiting
the poor. Instruction and amusement can also be combined. Pursuits like
music, gardening, drawing, botany, and the like, unite intellectual
improvement with amusement, social enjoyment, and exercise.

With housekeepers, and others whose employments are various and
desultory, much time can be saved by preparing employments for little
intervals of leisure. Thus, some ladies make ready, and keep in the
parlor, light work, to take up when detained there; some keep a book at
hand, in the nursery, to read while holding or sitting by a sleeping
infant. One of the most popular female poets of our Country very often
shows her friends, at their calls, that the thread of the knitting,
never need interfere with the thread of agreeable discourse.

It would be astonishing, to one who had never tried the experiment, how
much can be accomplished, by a little planning and forethought, in thus
finding employment for odd intervals of time.

But, besides economizing our own time, we are bound to use our influence
and example to promote the discharge of the same duty by others. A woman
is under obligations so to arrange the hours and pursuits of her family,
as to promote systematic and habitual industry; and if, by late
breakfasts, irregular hours for meals, and other hinderances of this
kind, she interferes with, or refrains from promoting regular industry
in, others, she is accountable to God for all the waste of time
consequent on her negligence. The mere example of system and industry,
in a housekeeper, has a wonderful influence in promoting the same
virtuous habit in others.

_On Economy in Expenses._

It is impossible for a woman to practise a wise economy in expenditures,
unless she is taught how to do it, either by a course of experiments, or
by the instruction of those who have had experience. It is amusing to
notice the various, and oftentimes contradictory, notions of economy,
among judicious and experienced housekeepers; for there is probably no
economist, who would not be deemed lavish or wasteful, in some respects,
by another and equally experienced and judicious person, who, in some
different points, would herself be as much condemned by the other. These
diversities are occasioned by dissimilar early habits, and by the
different relative value assigned, by each, to the various modes of
enjoyment, for which money is expended.

But, though there may be much disagreement in minor matters, there are
certain general principles, which all unite in sanctioning. The first,
is, that care be taken to know the amount of income and of current
expenses, so that the proper relative proportion be preserved, and the
expenditures never exceed the means. Few women can do this, thoroughly,
without keeping regular accounts. The habits of this Nation, especially
among business-men, are so desultory, and the current expenses of a
family, in many points, are so much more under the control of the man
than of the woman, that many women, who are disposed to be systematic in
this matter, cannot follow their wishes. But there are often cases, when
much is left undone in this particular, simply because no effort is
made. Yet every woman is bound to do as much as is in her power, to
accomplish a systematic mode of expenditure, and the regulation of it by
Christian principles.

The following are examples of different methods which have been adopted,
for securing a proper adjustment of expenses to the means.

The first, is that of a lady, who kept a large boarding-house, in one of
our cities. Every evening, before retiring, she took an account of the
expenses of the day; and this usually occupied her not more than fifteen
minutes, at a time. On each Saturday, she made an inventory of the
stores on hand, and of the daily expenses, and also of what was due to
her; and then made an exact estimate of her expenditures and profits.
This, after the first two or three weeks, never took more than an hour,
at the close of the week. Thus, by a very little time, regularly devoted
to this object, she knew, accurately, her income, expenditures, and

Another friend of the writer, lives on a regular salary. The method
adopted, in this case, is to calculate to what the salary amounts, each
week. Then an account is kept, of what is paid out, each week, for
rent, fuel, wages, and food. This amount of each week is deducted from
the weekly income. The remainders of each week are added, at the close
of a month, as the stock from which is to be taken, the dress,
furniture, books, travelling expenses, charities, and all other

Another lady, whose husband is a lawyer, divides the year into four
quarters, and the income into four equal parts. She then makes her
plans, so that the expenses of one quarter shall never infringe on the
income of another. So resolute is she, in carrying out this
determination, that if, by any mischance, she is in want of articles
before the close of a quarter, which she has not the means for
providing, she will subject herself to temporary inconvenience, by
waiting, rather than violate her rule.

Another lady, whose husband is engaged in a business, which he thinks
makes it impossible for him to know what his yearly income will be, took
this method:--She kept an account of all her disbursements, for one
year. This she submitted to her husband, and obtained his consent, that
the same sum should be under her control, the coming year, for similar
purposes, with the understanding, that she might modify future
apportionments, in any way her judgement and conscience might approve.

A great deal of uneasiness and discomfort is caused, to both husband and
wife, in many cases, by an entire want of system and forethought, in
arranging expenses. Both keep buying what they think they need, without
any calculation as to how matters are coming out, and with a sort of
dread of running in debt, all the time harassing them. Such never know
the comfort of independence. But, if a man or woman will only calculate
what their income is, and then plan so as to know that they are all the
time living within it, they secure one of the greatest comforts, which
wealth ever bestows, and what many of the rich, who live in a loose and
careless way, never enjoy. It is not so much the amount of income, as
the regular and correct apportionment of expenses, that makes a family
truly comfortable. A man, with ten thousand a year, is often more
harassed, for want of money, than the systematic economist, who supports
a family on only six hundred a year. And the inspired command, "Owe no
man any thing," can never be conscientiously observed, without a
systematic adaptation of expenses to means.

As it is very important that young ladies should learn systematic
economy, in expenses, it will be a great benefit, for every young girl
to begin, at twelve or thirteen years of age, to make her own purchases,
and keep her accounts, under the guidance of her mother, or some other
friend. And if parents would ascertain the actual expense of a
daughter's clothing, for a year, and give the sum to her, in quarterly
payments, requiring a regular account, it would be of great benefit in
preparing her for future duties. How else are young ladies to learn to
make purchases properly, and to be systematic and economical? The art of
system and economy can no more come by intuition, than the art of
watchmaking or bookkeeping; and how strange it appears, that so many
young ladies take charge of a husband's establishment, without having
had either instruction or experience in one of the most important duties
of their station!

The second general principle of economy, is, that, in apportioning an
income, among various objects, the most important should receive the
largest supply, and that all retrenchments be made in matters of less
importance. In a previous chapter, some general principles have been
presented, to guide in this duty. Some additional hints will here be
added, on the same topic.

In regard to dress and furniture, much want of judgement and good taste
is often seen, in purchasing some expensive article, which is not at all
in keeping with the other articles connected with it. Thus, a large
sideboard, or elegant mirror, or sofa, which would be suitable only for
a large establishment, with other rich furniture, is crowded into too
small a room, with coarse and cheap articles around it. So, also,
sometimes a parlor, and company-chamber, will be furnished in a style
suitable only for the wealthy, while the table will be supplied with
shabby linen, and imperfect crockery, and every other part of the house
will look, in comparison with these fine rooms, mean and niggardly. It
is not at all uncommon, to find very showy and expensive articles in the
part of the house visible to strangers, when the children's rooms,
kitchen, and other back portions, are on an entirely different scale.

So in regard to dress, a lady will sometimes purchase an elegant and
expensive article, which, instead of attracting admiration from the eye
of taste, will merely serve as a decoy to the painful contrast of all
other parts of the dress. A woman of real good taste and discretion,
will strive to maintain a relative consistency between all departments,
and not, in one quarter, live on a scale fitted only to the rich, and in
another, on one appropriate only to the poor.

Another mistake in economy, is often made, by some of the best-educated
and most intelligent of mothers. Such will often be found spending day
after day at needlework, when, with a comparatively small sum, this
labor could be obtained of those who need the money, which such work
would procure for them. Meantime, the daughters of the family, whom the
mother is qualified to educate, or so nearly qualified, that she could
readily keep ahead of her children, are sent to expensive
boarding-schools, where their delicate frames, their pliant minds, and
their moral and religious interests, are relinquished to the hands of
strangers. And the expense, thus incurred, would serve to pay the hire
of every thing the mother can do in sewing, four or five times over. The
same want of economy is shown in communities, where, instead of
establishing a good female school in their vicinity, the men of wealth
send their daughters abroad, at double the expense, to be either
educated or spoiled, as the case may be.

Another species of poor economy, is manifested in neglecting to acquire
and apply mechanical skill, which, in consequence, has to be hired from
others. Thus, all the plain sewing will be done by the mother and
daughters, while all that requires skill will be hired. Instead of this,
others take pains to have their daughters instructed in mantuamaking,
and the simpler parts of millinery, so that the plain work is given to
the poor, who need it, and the more expensive and tasteful operations
are performed in the family. The writer knows ladies, who not only make
their own dresses, but also their caps, bonnets, and artificial flowers.

Some persons make miscalculations in economy, by habitually looking up
cheap articles, while others go to the opposite extreme, and always buy
the best of every thing. Those ladies, who are considered the best
economists, do not adopt either method. In regard to cheap goods, the
fading colors, the damages discovered in use, the poorness of material,
and the extra sewing demanded to replace articles lost by such causes,
usually render them very dear, in the end. On the other hand, though
some articles, of the most expensive kind, wear longest and best, yet,
as a general rule, articles at medium prices do the best service. This
is true of table and bed linens, broadcloths, shirtings, and the like;
though, even in these cases, it is often found, that the coarsest and
cheapest last the longest.

Buying by wholesale, and keeping a large supply on hand, are economical
only in large families, where the mistress is careful; but in other
cases, the hazards of accident, and the temptation to a lavish use, will
make the loss outrun the profits.

There is one mode of economizing, which, it is hoped, will every year
grow more rare; and that is, making penurious savings, by getting the
poor to work as cheap as possible. Many amiable and benevolent women
have done this, on principle, without reflecting on the want of
Christian charity thus displayed. Let every woman, in making bargains
with the poor, conceive herself placed in the same circumstances,
toiling hour after hour, and day after day, for a small sum, and then
deal with others as she would be dealt by in such a situation. _Liberal
prices_, and _prompt payment_, should be an invariable maxim, in dealing
with the poor.

The third general principle of economy, is, that all articles should be
so used, and taken care of, as to secure the longest service, with the
least waste. Under this head, come many particulars in regard to the use
and preservation of articles, which will be found more in detail in
succeeding chapters. It may be proper, however, here to refer to one
very common impression, as to the relative obligation of the poor and
the rich in regard to economy. Many seem to suppose, that those who are
wealthy, have a right to be lavish and negligent in the care of
expenses. But this surely is a great mistake. Property is a talent,
given by God, to spend for the welfare of mankind; and the needless
waste of it, is as wrong in the rich, as it is in the poor. The rich are
under obligations to apportion their income, to the various objects
demanding attention, by the same rule as all others; and if this will
allow them to spend more for superfluities than those of smaller means,
it never makes it right to misuse or waste any of the bounties of
Providence. Whatever is no longer wanted for their own enjoyment, should
be carefully saved, to add to the enjoyment of others.

It is not always that men understand the economy of Providence, in that
unequal distribution of property, which, even under the most perfect
form of government, will always exist. Many, looking at the present
state of things, imagine that the rich, if they acted in strict
conformity to the law of benevolence, would share all their property
with their suffering fellow-men. But such do not take into account, the
inspired declaration, that "a man's life consisteth not in the
abundance of the things which he possesseth," or, in other words, life
is made valuable, not by great possessions, but by such a character as
prepares a man to enjoy what he holds. God perceives that human
character can be most improved, by that kind of discipline, which
exists, when there is something valuable to be gained by industrious
efforts. This stimulus to industry could never exist, in a community
where all are just alike, as it does in a state of society where every
man sees, possessed by others, enjoyments, which he desires, and may
secure by effort and industry. So, in a community where all are alike as
to property, there would be no chance to gain that noblest of all
attainments, a habit of self-denying benevolence, which toils for the
good of others, and takes from one's own store, to increase the
enjoyments of another.

Instead, then, of the stagnation, both of industry and of benevolence,
which would follow the universal and equable distribution of property,
one class of men, by superior advantages of birth, or intellect, or
patronage, come into possession of a great amount of capital. With these
means, they are enabled, by study, reading, and travel, to secure
expansion of mind, and just views of the relative advantages of moral,
intellectual, and physical enjoyments. At the same time, Christianity
imposes obligations, corresponding with the increase of advantages and
means. The rich are not at liberty to spend their treasures for
themselves, alone. Their wealth is given, by God, to be employed for the
best good of mankind; and their intellectual advantages are designed,
primarily, to enable them to judge correctly, in employing their means
most wisely for the general good.

Now, suppose a man of wealth inherits ten thousand acres of real estate:
it is not his duty to divide it among his poor neighbors and tenants. If
he took this course, it is probable, that most of them would spend all
in thriftless waste and indolence, or in mere physical enjoyments.
Instead, then, of thus putting his capital out of his hands, he is bound
to retain, and so to employ, it, as to raise his neighbors and tenants
to such a state of virtue and intelligence, that they can secure far
more, by their own efforts and industry, than he, by dividing his
capital, could bestow upon them.

In this view of the subject, it is manifest, that the unequal
distribution of property is no evil. The great difficulty is, that so
large a portion of those who hold much capital, instead of using their
various advantages for the greatest good of those around them, employ
the chief of them for mere selfish indulgences; thus inflicting as much
mischief on themselves, as results to others from their culpable
neglect. A great portion of the rich seem to be acting on the principle,
that the more God bestows on them, the less are they under obligation to
practise any self-denial, in fulfilling his benevolent plan of raising
our race to intelligence and holiness.

There are not a few, who seem to imagine that it is a mark of gentility
to be careless of expenses. But this notion, is owing to a want of
knowledge of the world. As a general fact, it will be found, that
persons of rank and wealth, abroad, are much more likely to be
systematic and economical, than persons of inferior standing in these
respects. Even the most frivolous, among the rich and great, are often
found practising a rigid economy, in certain respects, in order to
secure gratifications in another direction. And it will be found so
common, among persons of vulgar minds, and little education, and less
sense, to make a display of profusion and indifference to expense, as a
mark of their claims to gentility, that the really genteel look upon it
rather as a mark of low breeding. So that the sort of feeling, which
some persons cherish, as if it were a degradation to be careful of small
sums, and to be attentive to relative prices, in making purchases, is
founded on mistaken notions of gentility and propriety.

But one caution is needful, in regard to another extreme. When a lady
of wealth, is seen roaming about in search of cheaper articles, or
trying to beat down a shopkeeper, or making a close bargain with those
she employs, the impropriety is glaring to all minds. A person of wealth
has no occasion to spend time in looking for extra cheap articles; her
time could be more profitably employed in distributing to the wants of
others. And the practice of beating down tradespeople, is vulgar and
degrading, in any one. A woman, after a little inquiry, can ascertain
what is the fair and common price of things; and if she is charged an
exorbitant sum, she can decline taking the article. If the price be a
fair one, it is not becoming in her to search for another article which
is below the regular charge. If a woman finds that she is in a store
where they charge high prices, expecting to be beat down, she can
mention, that she wishes to know the lowest price, as it is contrary to
her principles to beat down charges.

There is one inconsistency, worthy of notice, which is found among that
class, who are ambitious of being ranked among the aristocracy of
society. It has been remarked, that, in the real aristocracy of other
lands, it is much more common, than with us, to practise systematic
economy. And such do not hesitate to say so, when they cannot afford
certain indulgences. This practice descends to subordinate grades; so
that foreign ladies, when they come to reside among us, seldom hesitate
in assigning the true reason, when they cannot afford any gratification.
But in this Country, it will be found, that many, who are most fond of
copying aristocratic examples, are, on this point, rather with the
vulgar. Not a few of those young persons, who begin life with parlors
and dresses in a style fitting only to established wealth, go into
expenses, which they can ill afford; and are ashamed even to allow, that
they are restrained from any expense, by motives of economy. Such a
confession is never extorted, except by some call of benevolence; and
then, they are very ready to declare that they cannot afford to bestow
even a pittance. In such cases, it would seem as if the direct opposite
of Christianity had gained possession of their tastes and opinions. They
are ashamed to appear to deny themselves; but are very far from having
any shame in denying the calls of benevolence.



There is such an intimate connection between the body and mind, that the
health of one, cannot be preserved, without a proper care of the other.
And it is from a neglect of this principle, that some of the most
exemplary and conscientious persons in the world, suffer a thousand
mental agonies, from a diseased state of body, while others ruin the
health of the body, by neglecting the proper care of the mind. When the
brain is excited, by stimulating drinks taken into the stomach, it
produces a corresponding excitement of the mental faculties. The reason,
the imagination, and all the powers, are stimulated to preternatural
vigor and activity. In like manner, when the mind is excited by earnest
intellectual effort, or by strong passions, the brain is equally
excited, and the blood rushes to the head. Sir Astley Cooper records,
that, in examining the brain of a young man who had lost a portion of
his skull, whenever "he was agitated, by some opposition to his wishes,"
"the blood was sent, with increased force, to his brain," and the
pulsations "became frequent and violent." The same effect was produced
by any intellectual effort; and the flushed countenance, which attends
earnest study or strong emotions of fear, shame, or anger, is an
external indication of the suffused state of the brain from such causes.

In exhibiting the causes, which injure the health of the mind, they
will be found to be partly physical, partly intellectual, and partly

The first cause of mental disease and suffering, is not unfrequently
found in the want of a proper supply of duly oxygenized blood. It has
been shown, that the blood, in passing through the lungs, is purified,
by the oxygen of the air combining with the superabundant hydrogen and
carbon of the venous blood, thus forming carbonic acid and water, which
are expired into the atmosphere. Every pair of lungs is constantly
withdrawing from the surrounding atmosphere its healthful principle, and
returning one, which is injurious to human life.

When, by confinement, and this process, the atmosphere is deprived of
its appropriate supply of oxygen, the purification of the blood is
interrupted, and it passes, without being properly prepared, into the
brain, producing languor, restlessness, and inability to exercise the
intellect and feelings. Whenever, therefore, persons sleep in a close
apartment, or remain, for a length of time, in a crowded or
ill-ventilated room, a most pernicious influence is exerted on the
brain, and, through this, on the mind. A person, who is often exposed to
such influences, can never enjoy that elasticity and vigor of mind,
which is one of the chief indications of its health. This is the reason,
why all rooms for religious meetings, and all schoolrooms, and sleeping
apartments, should be so contrived, as to secure a constant supply of
fresh air from without. The minister, who preaches in a crowded and
ill-ventilated apartment, loses much of his power to feel and to speak,
while the audience are equally reduced, in their capability of
attending. The teacher, who confines children in a close apartment,
diminishes their ability to study, or to attend to his instructions. And
the person, who habitually sleeps in a close room, impairs his mental
energies, in a similar degree. It is not unfrequently the case, that
depression of spirits, and stupor of intellect, are occasioned solely by
inattention to this subject.

Another cause of mental disease, is, the excessive exercise of the
intellect or feelings. If the eye is taxed, beyond its strength, by
protracted use, its blood-vessels become gorged, and the bloodshot
appearance warns of the excess and the need of rest. The brain is
affected, in a similar manner, by excessive use, though the suffering
and inflamed organ cannot make its appeal to the eye. But there are some
indications, which ought never to be misunderstood or disregarded. In
cases of pupils, at school or at college, a diseased state, from over
action, is often manifested by increased clearness of mind, and ease and
vigor of mental action. In one instance, known to the writer, a most
exemplary and industrious pupil, anxious to improve every hour, and
ignorant or unmindful of the laws of health, first manifested the
diseased state of her brain and mind, by demands for more studies, and a
sudden and earnest activity in planning modes of improvement for herself
and others. When warned of her danger, she protested that she never was
better, in her life; that she took regular exercise, in the open air,
went to bed in season, slept soundly, and felt perfectly well; that her
mind was never before so bright and clear, and study never so easy and
delightful. And at this time, she was on the verge of derangement, from
which she was saved only by an entire cessation of all her intellectual

A similar case occurred, under the eye of the writer, from over-excited
feelings. It was during a time of unusual religious interest in the
community, and the mental disease was first manifested, by the pupil
bringing her Hymn-book or Bible to the class-room, and making it her
constant resort, in every interval of school duty. It finally became
impossible to convince her, that it was her duty to attend to any thing
else; her conscience became morbidly sensitive, her perceptions
indistinct, her deductions unreasonable, and nothing, but entire change
of scene, exercise, and amusement, saved her. When the health of the
brain was restored, she found that she could attend to the "one thing
needful," not only without interruption of duty, or injury of health,
but rather so as to promote both. Clergymen and teachers need most
carefully to notice and guard against the danger here alluded to.

Any such attention to religion, as prevents the performance of daily
duties and needful relaxation, is dangerous, as tending to produce such
a state of the brain, as makes it impossible to feel or judge correctly.
And when any morbid and unreasonable pertinacity appears, much exercise,
and engagement in other interesting pursuits, should be urged, as the
only mode of securing the religious benefits aimed at. And whenever any
mind is oppressed with care, anxiety, or sorrow, the amount of active
exercise in the fresh air should be greatly increased, that the action
of the muscles may withdraw the blood, which, in such seasons, is
constantly tending too much to the brain.

There has been a most appalling amount of suffering, derangement,
disease, and death, occasioned by a want of attention to this subject,
in teachers and parents. Uncommon precocity in children is usually the
result of an unhealthy state of the brain; and, in such cases, medical
men would now direct, that the wonderful child should be deprived of all
books and study, and turned to play or work in the fresh air. Instead of
this, parents frequently add fuel to the fever of the brain, by
supplying constant mental stimulus, until the victim finds refuge in
idiocy or an early grave. Where such fatal results do not occur, the
brain, in many cases, is so weakened, that the prodigy of infancy sinks
below the medium of intellectual powers in afterlife. In our colleges,
too, many of the most promising minds sink to an early grave, or drag
out a miserable existence, from this same cause. And it is an evil, as
yet little alleviated by the increase of physiological knowledge. Every
college and professional school, and every seminary for young ladies,
needs a medical man, not only to lecture on physiology and the laws of
health, but empowered, in his official capacity, to investigate the
case of every pupil, and, by authority, to restrain him to such a course
of study, exercise, and repose, as his physical system requires. The
writer has found, by experience, that, in a large institution, there is
one class of pupils who need to be restrained, by penalties, from late
hours and excessive study, as much as another class need stimulus to

Under the head of excessive mental action, must be placed the indulgence
of the imagination in _novel reading_ and _castle building_. This kind
of stimulus, unless counterbalanced by physical exercise, not only
wastes time and energies, but undermines the vigor of the nervous
system. The imagination was designed, by our kind Creator, as the charm
and stimulus to animate to benevolent activity; and its perverted
exercise seldom fails to bring the appropriate penalty.

A third cause of mental disease, is, the want of the appropriate
exercise of the various faculties of the mind. On this point, Dr. Combe
remarks, "We have seen, that, by disuse, muscle becomes emaciated, bone
softens, blood-vessels are obliterated, and nerves lose their
characteristic structure. The brain is no exception to this general
rule. Of it, also, the tone is impaired by permanent inactivity, and it
becomes less fit to manifest the mental powers with readiness and
energy." It is "the withdrawal of the stimulus necessary for its healthy
exercise, which renders solitary confinement so severe a punishment,
even to the most daring minds. It is a lower degree of the same cause,
which renders continuous seclusion from society so injurious, to both
mental and bodily health."

"_Inactivity of intellect and of feeling_ is a very frequent
predisposing cause of every form of nervous disease. For demonstrative
evidence of this position, we have only to look at the numerous victims
to be found, among persons who have no call to exertion in gaining the
means of subsistence, and no objects of interest on which to exercise
their mental faculties and who consequently sink into a state of mental
sloth and nervous weakness." "If we look abroad upon society, we shall
find innumerable examples of mental and nervous debility from this
cause. When a person of some mental capacity is confined, for a long
time, to an unvarying round of employment, which affords neither scope
nor stimulus for one half of his faculties, and, from want of education
or society, has no external resources; his mental powers, for want of
exercise, become blunted, and his perceptions slow and dull." "The
intellect and feelings, not being provided with interests external to
themselves, must either become inactive and weak, or work upon
themselves and become diseased."

"The most frequent victims of this kind of predisposition, are females
of the middle and higher ranks, especially those of a nervous
constitution and _good natural abilities_; but who, from an ill-directed
education, possess nothing more solid than mere accomplishments, and
have no materials of thought," and no "occupation to excite interest or
_demand_ attention." "The liability of such persons to melancholy,
hysteria, hypochondriasis, and other varieties of mental distress,
really depends on a state of irritability of brain, induced by imperfect

These remarks, of a medical man, illustrate the principles before
indicated;--namely, that the demand of Christianity, that we live to
promote the general happiness, and not merely for selfish indulgence,
has for its aim, not only the general good, but the highest happiness,
of the individual of whom it is required.

A person possessed of wealth, who has nothing more noble to engage his
attention, than seeking his own personal enjoyment, subjects his mental
powers and moral feelings to a degree of inactivity, utterly at war with
health of mind. And the greater the capacities, the greater are the
sufferings which result from this cause. Any one, who has read the
misanthropic wailings of Lord Byron, has seen the necessary result of
great and noble powers bereft of their appropriate exercise, and, in
consequence, becoming sources of the keenest suffering.

It is this view of the subject, which has often awakened feelings of
sorrow and anxiety in the mind of the writer, while aiding in the
developement and education of superior female minds, in the wealthier
circles. Not because there are not noble objects for interest and
effort, abundant, and within reach of such minds; but because
long-established custom has made it seem so Quixotic, to the majority,
even of the professed followers of Christ, for a woman of wealth to
practise any great self-denial, that few have independence of mind and
Christian principle sufficient to overcome such an influence. The more a
mind has its powers developed, the more does it aspire and pine after
some object worthy of its energies and affections; and they are
commonplace and phlegmatic characters, who are most free from such
deep-seated wants. Many a young woman, of fine genius and elevated
sentiment, finds a charm in Lord Byron's writings, because they present
a glowing picture of what, to a certain extent, must be felt by every
well-developed mind, which has no nobler object in life, than the
pursuit of its own gratification.

If young ladies of wealth could pursue their education, under the full
conviction that the increase of their powers and advantages increased
their obligations to use all for the good of society, and with some plan
of benevolent enterprise in view, what new motives of interest would be
added to their daily pursuits! And what blessed results would follow, to
our beloved Country, if all well-educated females carried out the
principles of Christianity, in the exercise of their developed powers!

It is cheering to know, that there are women, among the most intelligent
and wealthy, who can be presented as examples of what may be done, when
there is a heart to do. A pupil of the writer is among this number,
who, though a rich heiress, immediately, on the close of her
school-life, commenced a course of self-denying benevolence, in the
cause of education. She determined to secure a superior female
institution, in her native place, which should extend the benefits of
the best education to all in that vicinity, at a moderate charge.
Finding no teacher on the ground, prepared to take the lead, and though
herself a timid and retiring character, she began, with the aid of the
governess in her mother's family, a daily school, superintending all,
and teaching six hours a day. The liberal-minded and intelligent mother
cooperated, and the result is a flourishing female seminary, with a
large and beautiful and well-furnished building; the greater part of the
means being supplied by the mother, and almost all by the members of
that family connection. And both these ladies will testify, that no time
or money, spent for any other object, has ever secured to them more real
and abiding enjoyment, than witnessing the results of this successful
and benevolent enterprise, which, for years to come, will pour forth
blessings on society.

Another lady could be pointed out, who, possessing some property, went
into a new western village, built and furnished her schoolhouse, and
established herself there, to aid in raising a community from ignorance
and gross worldliness, to intelligence and virtue. And in repeated
instances, among the friends and pupils of the writer, young ladies have
left wealthy homes, and affectionate friends, to find nobler enjoyments,
in benevolent and active exertions to extend intelligence and virtue,
where such disinterested laborers were needed. In other cases, where it
was not practicable to leave home, well-educated young ladies have
interested themselves in common schools in the vicinity, aiding the
teachers, by their sympathy, counsel, and personal assistance.

Other ladies, of property and standing, having families to educate, and
being well qualified for such duties, have relinquished a large portion
of domestic labor and superintendence, which humbler minds could be
hired to perform, devoted themselves to the education of their children,
and received others, less fortunate, to share with their own these
superior advantages. But, so long as the feeling widely exists, that the
increase of God's bounties diminishes the obligations of self-denying
service for the good of mankind, so long will well-educated women, in
easy circumstances, shrink from such confinement and exertion.

It is believed, however, that there are many benevolent and intelligent
women, in this Country, who would gladly engage in such enterprises,
were there any appropriate way within their reach. And it is a question,
well deserving consideration, among those who guide the public mind in
benevolent enterprises, whether some organization is not demanded, which
shall bring the whole community to act systematically, in voluntary
associations, to extend a proper education to every child in this
Nation, and to bring into activity all the female enterprise and
benevolence now lying dormant, for want of proper facilities to exercise
them. There are hundreds of villages, which need teachers, and that
would support them, if they were on the spot, but which never will send
for them. And there are hundreds of females, now unemployed, who would
teach, if a proper place, and home, and support, and escort, were
provided for them. And there needs to be some enlarged and systematic
plan, conducted by wise and efficient men, to secure these objects.

Could such a plan, as the one suggested, be carried out, it is believed
that many female minds, now suffering, from diseases occasioned by want
of appropriate objects for their energies, would be relieved. The duties
of a teacher exercise every intellectual faculty, to its full extent;
while, in this benevolent service, all the social, moral, and
benevolent, emotions, are kept in full play. The happiest persons the
writer has ever known,--those who could say that they were as happy as
they wished to be, in this world, (and she has seen such,)--were persons
engaged in this employment.

The indications of a diseased mind, owing to a want of the proper
exercise of its powers, are, apathy, discontent, a restless longing for
excitement, a craving for unattainable good, a diseased and morbid
action of the imagination, dissatisfaction with the world, and
factitious interest in trifles which the mind feels to be unworthy of
its powers. Such minds sometimes seek alleviation in exciting
amusements; others resort to the grosser enjoyments of sense. Oppressed
with the extremes of languor, or over-excitement, or apathy, the body
fails under the wearing process, and adds new causes of suffering to the
mind. Such, the compassionate Saviour calls to his service, in these
appropriate terms: "Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden,
and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me," "and
ye shall find rest unto your souls."



There is no point, where the women of this Country need more wisdom,
patience, principle, and self-control, than in relation to those whom
they employ in domestic service. The subject is attended with many
difficulties, which powerfully influence the happiness of families; and
the following suggestions are offered, to aid in securing right opinions
and practice.

One consideration, which it would be well to bear in mind, on this
subject, is, that a large portion of the peculiar trials, which American
women suffer from this source, are the necessary evils connected with
our most valuable civil blessings. Every blessing of this life involves
some attendant liability to evil, from the same source; and, in this
case, while we rejoice at a state of society, which so much raises the
condition and advantages of our sex, the evils involved should be
regarded as more than repaid, by the compensating benefits. If we
cannot secure the cringing, submissive, well-trained, servants of
aristocratic lands, let us be consoled that we thus escape from the
untold miseries and oppression, which always attend that state of

Instead, then, of complaining that we cannot have our own peculiar
advantages, and those of other nations, too, or imagining how much
better off we should be, if things were different from what they are, it
is much wiser and more Christianlike to strive cheerfully to conform to
actual circumstances; and, after remedying all that we can control,
patiently to submit to what is beyond our power. If domestics are found
to be incompetent, unstable, and unconformed to their station, it is
Perfect Wisdom which appoints these trials, to teach us patience,
fortitude, and self-control; and, if the discipline is met, in a proper
spirit, it will prove a blessing, rather than an evil.

But, to judge correctly in regard to some of the evils involved in the
state of domestic service, in this Country, we should endeavor to
conceive ourselves placed in the situation of those, of whom complaint
is made, that we may not expect, from them, any more than it would seem
right should be exacted from us, in similar circumstances.

It is sometimes urged, against domestics, that they exact exorbitant
wages. But what is the rule of rectitude, on this subject? Is it not the
universal law of labor and of trade, that an article is to be valued,
according to its scarcity and the demand? When wheat is scarce, the
farmer raises his price; and when a mechanic offers services, difficult
to be obtained, he makes a corresponding increase of price. And why is
it not right, for domestics to act according to a rule, allowed to be
correct in reference to all other trades and professions? It is a fact,
that really good domestic service must continue to increase in value,
just in proportion as this Country waxes rich and prosperous; thus
making the proportion of those, who wish to hire labor, relatively
greater, and the number of those, willing to go to service, less.

Money enables the rich to gain many advantages, which those of more
limited circumstances cannot secure. One of these, is, securing good
domestics, by offering high wages; and this, as the scarcity of this
class increases, will serve constantly to raise the price of service. It
is right for domestics to charge the market value, and this value is
always decided by the scarcity of the article and the amount of demand.
Right views of this subject, will sometimes serve to diminish hard
feelings towards those, who would otherwise be wrongfully regarded as
unreasonable and exacting.

Another complaint against domestics, is, that of instability and
discontent, leading to perpetual change. But in reference to this, let a
mother or daughter conceive of their own circumstances as so changed,
that the daughter must go out to service. Suppose a place is engaged,
and it is then found that she must sleep in a comfortless garret; and
that, when a new domestic comes, perhaps a coarse and dirty foreigner,
she must share her bed with her. Another place is offered, where she can
have a comfortable room, and an agreeable room-mate; in such a case,
would not both mother and daughter think it right to change?

Or, suppose, on trial, it was found that the lady of the house was
fretful, or exacting, and hard to please; or, that her children were so
ungoverned, as to be perpetual vexations; or, that the work was so
heavy, that no time was allowed for relaxation and the care of a
wardrobe;--and another place offers, where these evils can be escaped:
would not mother and daughter here think it right to change? And is it
not right for domestics, as well as their employers, to seek places,
where they can be most comfortable?

In some cases, this instability and love of change would be remedied, if
employers would take more pains to make a residence with them agreeable;
and to attach domestics to the family, by feelings of gratitude and
affection. There are ladies, even where well-qualified domestics are
most rare, who seldom find any trouble in keeping good and steady ones.
And the reason is, that their domestics know they cannot better their
condition, by any change within reach. It is not merely by giving them
comfortable rooms, and good food, and presents, and privileges, that the
attachment of domestics is secured; it is by the manifestation of a
friendly and benevolent interest in their comfort and improvement. This
is exhibited, in bearing patiently with their faults; in kindly teaching
them how to improve; in showing them how to make and take proper care of
their clothes; in guarding their health; in teaching them to read, if
necessary, and supplying them with proper books; and, in short, by
endeavoring, so far as may be, to supply the place of parents. It is
seldom that such a course would fail to secure steady service, and such
affection and gratitude, that even higher wages would be ineffectual to
tempt them away. There would probably be some cases of ungrateful
returns; but there is no doubt that the course indicated, if generally
pursued, would very much lessen the evil in question.

Another subject of complaint, in regard to domestics, is, their pride,
insubordination, and spirit not conformed to their condition. They are
not willing to be called _servants_; in some places, they claim a seat,
at meals, with the family; they imitate a style of dress unbecoming
their condition; and their manners and address are rude and
disrespectful. That these evils are very common, among this class of
persons, cannot be denied; the only question is, how can they best be
met and remedied.

In regard to the common feeling among domestics, which is pained and
offended by being called "servants," there is need of some consideration
and allowance. It should be remembered, that, in this Country, children,
from their earliest years, are trained to abhor slavery, in reference
to themselves, as the greatest of all possible shame and degradation.
They are perpetually hearing orations, songs, and compositions of all
sorts, which set forth the honor and dignity of freemen, and heap scorn
and contempt on all who would be so mean as to be slaves. Now the term
servant, and the duties it involves, are, in the minds of many persons,
nearly the same as those of slave. And there are few minds, entirely
free from associations which make servitude a degradation. It is not
always pride, then, which makes this term so offensive. It is a
consequence of that noble and generous spirit of freedom, which every
American draws from his mother's breast, and which ought to be
respected, rather than despised. In order to be respected, by others, we
must respect ourselves; and sometimes the ruder classes of society make
claims, deemed forward and offensive, when, with their views, such a
position seems indispensable to preserve a proper self-respect.

Where an excessive sensibility on this subject exists, and forward and
disrespectful manners result from it, the best remedy is, a kind attempt
to give correct views, such as better-educated minds are best able to
attain. It should be shown to them, that, in this Country, labor has
ceased to be degrading, in any class; that, in all classes, different
grades of subordination must exist; and that it is no more degrading,
for a domestic to regard the heads of a family as superiors in station,
and treat them with becoming respect, than it is for children to do the
same, or for men to treat their rulers with respect and deference. They
should be taught, that domestics use a different entrance to the house,
and sit at a distinct table, not because they are inferior beings, but
because this is the best method of securing neatness, order, and
convenience. They can be shown, if it is attempted in a proper spirit
and manner, that these very regulations really tend to their own ease
and comfort, as well as to that of the family.

The writer has known a case, where the lady of the family, for the sake
of convincing her domestic of the truth of these views, allowed her to
follow her own notions, for a short time, and join the family at meals.
It was merely required, as a condition, that she should always dress her
hair as the other ladies did, and appear in a clean dress, and abide by
all the rules of propriety at table, which the rest were required to
practise, and which were duly detailed. The experiment was tried, two or
three times; and, although the domestic was treated with studious
politeness and kindness, she soon felt that she should be much more
comfortable in the kitchen, where she could talk, eat, and dress, as she
pleased. A reasonable domestic can also be made to feel the propriety of
allowing opportunity for the family to talk freely of their private
affairs, when they meet at meals, as they never could do, if restrained
by the constant presence of a stranger. Such views, presented in a kind
and considerate manner, will often entirely change the views of a
domestic, who is sensitive on such subjects.

When a domestic is forward and bold in manners, and disrespectful in
address, a similar course can be pursued. It can be shown, that those,
who are among the best-bred and genteel, have courteous and respectful
manners and language to all they meet, while many, who have wealth, are
regarded as vulgar, because they exhibit rude and disrespectful manners.
The very term, _gentle_man, indicates the refinement and delicacy of
address, which distinguishes the high-bred from the coarse and vulgar.

In regard to appropriate dress, in most cases it is difficult for an
employer to interfere, _directly_, with comments or advice. The most
successful mode, is, to offer some service in mending or making a
wardrobe, and when a confidence in the kindness of feeling is thus
gained, remarks and suggestions will generally be properly received, and
new views of propriety and economy can be imparted. In some cases, it
may be well for an employer,--who, from appearances, anticipates
difficulty of this kind,--in making the agreement, to state that she
wishes to have the room, person, and dress of her domestics kept neat,
and in order, and that she expects to remind them of their duty, in this
particular, if it is neglected. Domestics are very apt to neglect the
care of their own chambers and clothing; and such habits have a most
pernicious influence on their wellbeing, and on that of their children
in future domestic life. An employer, then, is bound to exercise a
parental care over them, in these respects.

In regard to the great deficiencies of domestics, in qualifications for
their duties, much patience and benevolence are required. Multitudes
have never been taught to do their work properly; and, in such cases,
how unreasonable it would be to expect it of them! Most persons, of this
class, depend, for their knowledge in domestic affairs, not on their
parents, who are usually unqualified to instruct them, but on their
employers; and if they live in a family where nothing is done neatly and
properly, they have no chance to learn how to perform their duties well.
When a lady finds that she must employ a domestic who is ignorant,
awkward, and careless, her first effort should be, to make all proper
allowance for past want of instruction, and the next, to remedy the
evil, by kind and patient teaching. In doing this, it should ever be
borne in mind, that nothing is more difficult, than to change old
habits, and to learn to be thoughtful and considerate. And a woman must
make up her mind to tell the same thing "over and over again," and yet
not lose her patience. It will often save much vexation, if, on the
arrival of a new domestic, the mistress of the family, or a daughter,
will, for two or three days, go round with the novice, and show the
exact manner in which it is expected the work will be done. And this,
also, it may be well to specify in the agreement, as some domestics
would otherwise resent such a supervision.

But it is often remarked, that, after a woman has taken all this pains
to instruct a domestic, and make her a good one, some other person will
offer higher wages, and she will leave. This, doubtless, is a sore
trial; but, if such efforts were made in the true spirit of benevolence,
the lady will still have her reward, in the consciousness that she has
contributed to the welfare of society, by making one more good domestic,
and one more comfortable family where that domestic is employed; and if
the latter becomes the mother of a family, a whole circle of children
will share in the benefit.

There is one great mistake, not unfrequently made, in the management
both of domestics and of children; and that is, in supposing that the
way to cure defects, is by finding fault as each failing occurs. But,
instead of this being true, in many cases the directly opposite course
is the best; while, in all instances, much good judgement is required,
in order to decide when to notice faults, and when to let them pass
unnoticed. There are some minds, very sensitive, easily discouraged, and
infirm of purpose. Such persons, when they have formed habits of
negligence, haste, and awkwardness, often need expressions of sympathy
and encouragement, rather than reproof. They have usually been found
fault with, so much, that they have become either hardened or
desponding; and it is often the case, that a few words of commendation
will awaken fresh efforts and renewed hope. In almost every case, words
of kindness, confidence, and encouragement, should be mingled with the
needful admonitions or reproof.

It is a good rule, in reference to this point, to _forewarn_, instead of
finding fault. Thus, when a thing has been done wrong, let it pass
unnoticed, till it is to be done again; and then, a simple request, to
have it done in the right way, will secure quite as much, and probably
more, willing effort, than a reproof administered for neglect. Some
persons seem to take it for granted, that young and inexperienced minds
are bound to have all the forethought and discretion of mature persons;
and freely express wonder and disgust, when mishaps occur for want of
these traits. But it would be far better to save from mistake or
forgetfulness, by previous caution and care on the part of those who
have gained experience and forethought; and thus many occasions of
complaint and ill-humor will be avoided.

Those, who fill the places of heads of families, are not very apt to
think how painful it is, to be chided for neglect of duty, or for faults
of character. If they would sometimes imagine themselves in the place of
those whom they control, with some person daily administering reproof to
them, in the same _tone and style_ as they employ to those who are under
them, it might serve as a useful check to their chidings. It is often
the case, that persons, who are most strict and exacting, and least able
to make allowances and receive palliations, are themselves peculiarly
sensitive to any thing which implies that they are in fault. By such,
the spirit implied in the Divine petition, "forgive us our trespasses as
we forgive those who trespass against us," needs especially to be

One other consideration, is very important. There is no duty, more
binding on Christians, than that of patience and meekness under
provocations and disappointment. Now, the tendency of every sensitive
mind, when thwarted in its wishes, is, to complain and find fault, and
that often in tones of fretfulness or anger. But there are few
domestics, who have not heard enough of the Bible, to know that angry or
fretful fault-finding, from the mistress of a family, when her work is
not done to suit her, is not in agreement with the precepts of Christ.
They notice and feel the inconsistency; and every woman, when she gives
way to feelings of anger and impatience, at the faults of those around
her, lowers herself in their respect, while her own conscience, unless
very much blinded, cannot but suffer a wound.

There are some women, who, in the main, are amiable, who seem impressed
with the idea, that it is their office and duty to find fault with their
domestics, whenever any thing is not exactly right, and follow their
fancied calling without the least appearance of tenderness or sympathy,
as if the objects of their discipline were stocks or stones. The writer
once heard a domestic, describing her situation in a family which she
had left, make this remark of her past employer: "She was a very good
housekeeper, allowed good wages, and gave us many privileges and
presents; but if we ever did any thing wrong, she always _talked to us
just as if she thought we had no feelings_, and I never was so unhappy
in my life, as while living with her." And this was said of a
kind-hearted and conscientious woman, by a very reasonable and amiable

Every woman, who has the care of domestics, should cultivate a habit of
regarding them with that sympathy and forbearance, which she would wish
for herself or her daughters, if deprived of parents, fortune, and home.
The fewer advantages they have enjoyed, and the greater difficulties of
temper or of habit they have to contend with, the more claims they have
on compassionate forbearance. They ought ever to be looked upon, not as
the mere ministers to our comfort and convenience, but as the humbler
and more neglected children of our Heavenly Father, whom He has sent to
claim our sympathy and aid.[N]


[N] The excellent little work of Miss Sedgwick, entitled 'Live, and Let
Live,' contains many valuable and useful hints, conveyed in a most
pleasing narrative form, which every housekeeper would do well to read.
The writer also begs leave to mention a work of her own, entitled,
'Letters to Persons engaged in Domestic Service.'



Every young lady ought to learn how to take proper care of an infant;
for, even if she is never to become the responsible guardian of a
nursery, she will often be in situations where she can render
benevolent aid to others, in this most fatiguing and anxious duty.

The writer has known instances, in which young ladies, who, having been
trained, by their mothers, properly to perform this duty, were, in some
cases, the means of saving the lives of infants, and in others, of
relieving, by their benevolent aid, sick mothers, from intolerable care
and anguish.

On this point, Dr. Combe remarks, "All women are not destined, in the
course of Nature, to become mothers; but how very small is the number of
those, who are unconnected, by family ties, friendship, or sympathy,
with the children of others! How very few are there, who, at some time
or other of their lives, would not find their usefulness and happiness
increased, by the possession of a kind of knowledge, intimately allied
to their best feelings and affections! And how important is it, to the
mother herself, that her efforts should be seconded by intelligent,
instead of ignorant, assistants!"

In order to be prepared for such benevolent ministries, every young lady
should improve the opportunity, whenever it is afforded her, for
learning how to wash, dress, and tend, a young infant; and whenever she
meets with such a work as Dr. Combe's, on the management of infants, she
ought to read it, and _remember_ its contents.

It was the design of the author, to fill this chapter chiefly with
extracts from various medical writers, giving some of the most important
directions on this subject; but finding these extracts too prolix for a
work of this kind, she has condensed them into a shorter compass. Some
are quoted verbatim, and some are abridged, chiefly from the writings of
Doctors Combe, Bell, and Eberle, who are among the most approved writers
on this subject.

"Nearly one half of the deaths, occurring during the first two years of
existence, are ascribable to mismanagement, and to errors in diet. At
birth, the stomach is feeble, and as yet unaccustomed to food; its
cravings are consequently easily satisfied, and frequently renewed."
"At that early age, there ought to be no fixed time for giving
nourishment. The stomach cannot be thus satisfied." "The active call of
the infant, is a sign, which needs never be mistaken."

But care must be taken to determine between the crying of pain or
uneasiness, and the call for food; and the practice of giving an infant
food, to stop its cries, is often the means of increasing its
sufferings. After a child has satisfied its hunger, from two to four
hours should intervene, before another supply is given.

"At birth, the stomach and bowels, never having been used, contain a
quantity of mucous secretion, which requires to be removed. To effect
this, Nature has rendered the first portions of the mother's milk
purposely watery and laxative. Nurses, however, distrusting Nature,
often hasten to administer some active purgative; and the consequence
often is, irritation in the stomach and bowels, not easily subdued." It
is only where the child is deprived of its mother's milk, as the first
food, that some gentle laxative should be given.

"It is a common mistake, to suppose, that, because a woman is nursing,
she ought to live very fully, and to add an allowance of wine, porter,
or other fermented liquor, to her usual diet. The only result of this
plan, is, to cause an unnatural fulness in the system, which places the
nurse on the brink of disease, and retards, rather than increases, the
food of the infant. More will be gained by the observance of the
ordinary laws of health, than by any foolish deviation, founded on

There is no point, on which medical men so emphatically lift the voice
of warning, as in reference to administering medicines to infants. It is
so difficult to discover what is the matter with an infant, its frame is
so delicate and so susceptible, and slight causes have such a powerful
influence, that it requires the utmost skill and judgement to ascertain
what would be proper medicines, and the proper quantity to be given.

Says Dr. Combe, "That there are cases, in which active means must be
promptly used, to save the child, is perfectly true. But it is not less
certain, that these are cases, of which no mother or nurse ought to
attempt the treatment. As a general rule, where the child is well
managed, medicine, of any kind, is very rarely required; and if disease
were more generally regarded in its true light, not as something thrust
into the system, which requires to be expelled by force, but as an
aberration from a natural mode of action, produced by some external
cause, we should be in less haste to attack it by medicine, and more
watchful in its prevention. Accordingly, where a constant demand for
medicine exists in a nursery, the mother may rest assured, that there is
something essentially wrong in the treatment of her children.

"Much havoc is made among infants, by the abuse of calomel and other
medicines, which procure momentary relief, but end by producing
incurable disease; and it has often excited my astonishment, to see how
recklessly remedies of this kind are had recourse to, on the most
trifling occasions, by mothers and nurses, who would be horrified, if
they knew the nature of the power they are wielding, and the extent of
injury they are inflicting."

Instead, then, of depending on medicine, for the preservation of the
health and life of an infant, the following precautions and preventives
should be adopted.

Take particular care of the _food_ of an infant. If it is nourished by
the mother, her own diet should be simple, nourishing, and temperate. If
the child be brought up by hand, the milk of a new-milch cow, mixed with
one third water, and sweetened a little with _white_ sugar, should be
the only food given, until the teeth come. This is more suitable, than
any preparations of flour or arrow-root, the nourishment of which is too
highly concentrated. Never give a child _bread_, _cake_, or _meat_,
before the teeth appear. If the food appear to distress the child, after
eating, first ascertain if the milk be really from a new-milch cow, as
it may otherwise be too old. Learn, also, whether the cow lives on
proper food. Cows that are fed on _still-slops_, as is often the case in
cities, furnish milk which is very unhealthful.

Be sure and keep a good supply of pure and fresh air, in the nursery. On
this point, Dr. Bell remarks, respecting rooms constructed without
fireplaces, and without doors or windows to let in pure air, from
without, "The sufferings of children of feeble constitutions, are
increased, beyond measure, by such lodgings as these. _An action,
brought by the Commonwealth_, ought to lie against those persons, who
build houses for sale or rent, in which rooms are so constructed as not
to allow of free ventilation; and _a writ of lunacy_ taken out against
those, who, with the common-sense experience which all have on this
head, should spend any portion of their time, still more, should sleep,
in rooms thus nearly air-tight."

After it is a month or two old, take an infant out to walk, or ride, in
a little wagon, every fair and warm day; but be very careful that its
feet, and every part of its body, are kept warm: and be sure that its
eyes are well protected from the light. Weak eyes, and sometimes
blindness, are caused by neglecting this precaution. Keep the head of an
infant cool, never allowing too warm bonnets, nor permitting it to sink
into soft pillows, when asleep. Keeping an infant's head too warm, very
much increases nervous irritability; and this is the reason why medical
men forbid the use of caps for infants. But the head of an infant
should, especially while sleeping, be protected from draughts of air,
and from getting cold.

Be very careful of the skin of an infant, as nothing tends so
effectually to prevent disease. For this end, it should be washed all
over, every morning, and then gentle friction should be applied, with
the hand, to the back, stomach, bowels, and limbs. The head should be
thoroughly washed, every day, and then brushed with a soft hair-brush,
or combed with a fine comb. If, by neglect, dirt accumulates under the
hair, apply, with the finger, the yolk of an egg, and then the fine comb
will remove it all, without any trouble.

Dress the infant, so that it will be always warm, but not so as to cause
perspiration. Be sure and keep its feet _always_ warm; and, for this
end, often warm them at a fire, and use long dresses. Keep the neck and
arms covered. For this purpose, wrappers, open in front, made high in
the neck, with long sleeves, to put on over the frock, are now very

It is better for both mother and child, that it should not sleep on the
mother's arm, at night, unless the weather be extremely cold. This
practice keeps the child too warm, and leads it to seek food too
frequently. A child should ordinarily take nourishment but twice in the
night. A crib beside the mother, with a plenty of warm and light
covering, is best for the child; but the mother must be sure that it is
always kept warm. Never cover a child's head, so that it will inhale the
air of its own lungs. In very warm weather, especially in cities, great
pains should be taken, to find fresh and cool air, by rides and sailing.
Walks in a public square, in the cool of the morning, and frequent
excursions in ferry or steam-boats, would often save a long bill for
medical attendance. In hot nights, the windows should be kept open, and
the infant laid on a mattress, or on folded blankets. A bit of straw
matting, laid over a featherbed, and covered with the under sheet, makes
a very cool bed for an infant.

Cool bathing, in hot weather, is very useful; but the water should be
very little cooler than the skin of the child. When the constitution is
delicate, the water should be slightly warmed. Simply sponging the body,
freely, in a tub, answers the same purpose as a regular bath. In very
warm weather, this should be done two or three times a day, always
waiting two or three hours after food has been given.

"When the stomach is peculiarly irritable, (from teething,) it is of
paramount necessity to withhold all the nostrums which have been so
falsely lauded as 'sovereign cures for _cholera infantum_.' The true
restoratives, to a child threatened with disease, are, cool air, cool
bathing, and cool drinks of simple water, in addition to _proper_ food,
at stated intervals." Do not take the advice of mothers, who tell of
this, that, and the other thing, which have proved excellent remedies in
their experience. Children have different constitutions, and there are
multitudes of different causes for their sickness; and what might cure
one child, might kill another, which _appeared_ to have the same
complaint. A mother should go on the general rule, of giving an infant
very little medicine, and then only by the direction of a discreet and
experienced physician. And there are cases, when, according to the views
of the most distinguished and competent practitioners, physicians
themselves are much too free in using medicines, instead of adopting
_preventive_ measures.

Do not allow a child to form such habits, that it will not be quiet,
unless tended and amused. A healthy child should be accustomed to lie or
sit in its cradle, much of the time; but it should occasionally be taken
up, and tossed, or carried about, for exercise and amusement. An infant
should be encouraged to _creep_, as an exercise very strengthening and
useful. If the mother fears the soiling of its nice dresses, she can
keep a long slip or apron, which will entirely cover the dress, and can
be removed, when the child is taken in the arms. A child should not be
allowed, when quite young, to bear its weight on its feet, very long at
a time, as this tends to weaken and distort the limbs.

Many mothers, with a little painstaking, succeed in putting their
infants, while awake, into their cradle, at regular hours, for sleep,
and induce regularity in other habits, which saves much trouble. In
doing this, a child may cry, at first, a great deal; but for a healthy
child, this use of the lungs does no harm, and tends rather to
strengthen, than to injure, them. A child who is trained to lie or sit,
and amuse itself, is happier than one who is carried and tended a great
deal, and thus rendered restless and uneasy when not so indulged.



In regard to the physical education of children, Dr. Clarke, Physician
in Ordinary to the Queen of England, expresses views, on one point, in
which most physicians would coincide. He says, "There is no greater
error in the management of children, than that of giving them animal
diet very early. By persevering in the use of an overstimulating diet,
the digestive organs become irritated, and the various secretions,
immediately connected with, and necessary to, digestion, are diminished,
especially the _biliary secretion_. Children, so fed, become very liable
to attacks of fever, and of inflammation, affecting, particularly, the
mucous membranes; and measles, and the other diseases incident to
childhood, are generally severe in their attack."

There are some popular notions on the subject of the use of animal food,
which need to be corrected.

One mistake, is, in supposing that the formation of the human teeth and
stomach indicate that man was designed to feed on flesh. Linnæus says,
that the organization of man, when compared with other animals, shows,
that "fruits and esculent vegetables constitute his most suitable food."
Baron Cuvier, the highest authority on comparative anatomy, says, "the
natural food of man, _judging from his structure_, appears to consist of
fruits, roots, and other succulent parts of vegetables."

Another common mistake, is, that the stimulus of animal food is
necessary for the full developement of the physical and intellectual
powers. This notion is disproved by facts. The inhabitants of Lapland
and Kamtschatka, who live altogether on animal food, are among the
smallest, weakest, and most timid, of races. But the Scotch Highlanders,
who, in a very cold climate, live almost exclusively on milk and
vegetable diet, are among the bravest, largest, and most athletic, of
men. The South-Sea Islanders, who live almost exclusively on fruits and
vegetables, are said to be altogether superior to English sailors, in
strength and agility. An intelligent gentleman, who spent many months in
Siberia, testifies, that no exiles endure the climate better than those,
who have all their lives been accustomed to a vegetable diet. The
stoutest and largest tribes in Africa, live solely on vegetable diet,
and the bright, intelligent, and active Arabs, live entirely on milk and

The popular notion is, that animal food is more nourishing than
vegetable; but on this point, scientific men hold different opinions.
Experiments, repeatedly made by some chemists, seem to prove the
contrary. Tables have been prepared, showing the amount of nutriment in
each kind of food, by which it would appear, that, while beef contains
thirty-five per cent. of nutritious matter, wheat-bread and rice contain
from eighty to ninety-five per cent. The supposed mistake is attributed
to the fact, that, on account of the stimulating nature of animal food,
it digests easier and more quickly than vegetables. Many physicians,
however, among them, Dr. Combe,[O] are of opinion, that animal food
"contains a greater quantity of nutriment in a given bulk, than either
herbaceous or farinaceous food." In some diseases, too, meat is better
for the stomach than vegetables.

The largest proportion of those, who have been remarkable for having
lived to the greatest age, were persons, whose diet was almost
exclusively vegetables; and it is a well-known fact, that the pulse of a
hardy and robust man, who lives on simple vegetable diet, is from ten
to twenty beats less in a minute, than that of men who live on a mixed

In regard to the intellect, Dr. Franklin asserted, from experience, that
an exclusively vegetable diet "promotes clearness of ideas and quickness
of perception; and is to be preferred, by all who labor with the mind."
The mightiest efforts of Sir Isaac Newton, were performed, while
nourished only by bread and water. Many other men, distinguished by
intellectual vigor, give similar testimony. These facts show that animal
food is not needful, to secure the perfect developement of mind or

The result of the treatment of the inmates of the Orphan Asylum, at
Albany, is one, upon which all, who have the care of young children,
should deeply ponder. During the first six years of the existence of
this Institution, its average number of children was eighty. For the
first three years, their diet was meat once a day, fine bread, rice,
Indian puddings, vegetables, fruit, and milk. Considerable attention was
given to clothing, fresh air, and exercise; and they were bathed once in
three weeks. During these three years, from four to six children, and
sometimes more, were continually on the sick-list; one or two assistant
nurses were necessary; a physician was called, two or three times a
week; and, in this time, there were between thirty and forty deaths. At
the end of this period, the management was changed, in these
respects:--daily ablutions of the whole body were practised; bread of
unbolted flour was substituted for that of fine wheat; and all animal
food was banished. More attention also was paid to clothing, bedding,
fresh air, and exercise. The result was, that the nursery was vacated;
the nurse and physician were no longer needed; and, for two years, not a
single case of sickness or death occurred. The third year, also, there
were no deaths, except those of two idiots and one other child, all of
whom were new inmates, who had not been subjected to this treatment. The
teachers of the children also testified, that there was a manifest
increase of intellectual vigor and activity, while there was much less
irritability of temper.

Let parents, nurses, and teachers, reflect on the above statement, and
bear in mind, that stupidity of intellect, and irritability of temper,
as well as ill health, are often caused by the mismanagement of the
nursery, in regard to the physical training of children. There is
probably no practice, more deleterious, than that of allowing children
to eat at short intervals, through the day. As the stomach is thus kept
constantly at work, with no time for repose, its functions are deranged,
and a weak or disordered stomach is the frequent result. Children should
be required to keep cakes, nuts, and other good things which they may
have to eat, till just before a meal, and then they will form a part of
their regular supply. This is better, than to wait till after their
hunger is satisfied by food, when they will eat their niceties merely to
gratify the palate, and thus overload the stomach.

In regard to the intellectual training of young children, some
modification in the common practice is necessary, with reference to
their physical wellbeing. More care is needful, in providing
_well-ventilated_ schoolrooms, and in securing more time for sports in
the open air, during school hours. It is very important, to most
mothers, that their young children should be removed from their care,
during the six school hours; and it is very useful, to quite young
children, to be subjected to the discipline of a school, and to
intercourse with other children of their own age. And, with a suitable
teacher, it is no matter how early children are sent to school, provided
their health is not endangered, by impure air, too much confinement, and
too great mental stimulus.

In regard to the formation of the moral character, it has been too much
the case, that the discipline of the nursery has consisted of
disconnected efforts to make children either do, or refrain from doing,
certain particular acts. Do this, and be rewarded; do that, and be
punished; is the ordinary routine of family government.

But children can be very early taught, that their happiness, both now
and hereafter, depends on the formation of _habits of submission,
self-denial_, and _benevolence_. And all the discipline of the nursery
can be conducted by the parents, not only with this general aim in their
own minds, but also with the same object daily set before the minds of
the children. Whenever their wishes are crossed, or their wills subdued,
they can be taught, that all this is done, not merely to please the
parent, or to secure some good to themselves or to others; but as a part
of that merciful training, which is designed to form such a character,
and such habits, that they can hereafter find their chief happiness in
giving up their will to God, and in living to do good to others, instead
of living merely to please themselves.

It can be pointed out to them, that they must always submit their will
to the will of God, or else be continually miserable. It can be shown,
how in the nursery, and in the school, and through all future days, a
child must practise the giving up of his will and wishes, when they
interfere with the rights and comfort of others; and how important it
is, early to learn to do this, so that it will, by habit, become easy
and agreeable. It can be shown, how children, who are indulged in all
their wishes, and who are never accustomed to any self-denial, always
find it hard to refrain from what injures themselves and others. It can
be shown, also, how important it is, for every person, to form such
habits of benevolence, towards others, that self-denial, in doing good,
will become easy.

Parents have learned, by experience, that children can be constrained,
by authority and penalties, to exercise self-denial, for _their own_
good, till a habit is formed, which makes the duty comparatively easy.
For example, well-trained children can be accustomed to deny themselves
tempting articles of food, which are injurious, until the practice
ceases to be painful and difficult. Whereas, an indulged child would be
thrown into fits of anger or discontent, when its wishes were crossed,
by restraints of this kind.

But it has not been so readily discerned, that the same method is
needful, in order to form a habit of self-denial, in doing good to
others. It has been supposed, that, while children must be forced, by
_authority_, to be self-denying and prudent, in regard to their own
happiness, it may properly be left to their own discretion, whether they
will practise any self-denial in doing good to others. But the more
difficult a duty is, the greater is the need of parental authority, in
forming a habit, which will make that duty easy.

In order to secure this, some parents turn their earliest efforts to
this object. They require the young child always to offer to others a
part of every thing which it receives; always to comply with all
reasonable requests of others for service; and often to practise little
acts of self-denial, in order to secure some enjoyment for others. If
one child receives a present of some nicety, he is required to share it
with all his brothers and sisters. If one asks his brother to help him
in some sport, and is met with a denial, the parent requires the
unwilling child to act benevolently, and give up some of his time to
increase his brother's enjoyment. Of course, in such an effort as this,
discretion must be used, as to the frequency and extent of the exercise
of authority, to induce a habit of benevolence. But, where parents
deliberately aim at such an object, and wisely conduct their
instructions and discipline to secure it, very much will be

Religious influence should be brought to bear directly upon this point.
In the very beginning of religious instruction, Jesus Christ should be
presented to the child, as that great and good Being, who came into
this world to teach children how to be happy, both here and hereafter.
He, who made it His meat and drink to do the will of His Heavenly
Father; who, in the humblest station, and most destitute condition,
denied Himself, daily, and went about doing good; should constantly be
presented as the object of their imitation. And as nothing so strongly
influences the minds of children, as the sympathy and example of a
_present_ friend, all those, who believe Him to be an _ever-present
Saviour_, should avail themselves of this powerful aid. Under such
training, Jesus Christ should be constantly presented to them, as their
ever-watchful, tender, and sympathizing friend. If the abstract idea of
an unembodied Spirit with the majestic attributes of Deity, be difficult
for the mind of infancy to grasp, the simple, the gentle, the lovely,
character of Christ, is exactly adapted to the wants and comprehension
of a child. In this view, how touching is the language of the Saviour,
to His misjudging disciples, "Suffer _the little children_ to come unto

In regard to forming habits of obedience, there have been two extremes,
both of which need to be shunned. One is, a stern and unsympathizing
maintenance of parental authority, demanding perfect and constant
obedience, without any attempt to convince a child of the propriety and
benevolence of the requisitions, and without any manifestation of
sympathy and tenderness for the pain and difficulties which are to be
met. Under such discipline, children grow up to fear their parents,
rather than to love and trust them; while some of the most valuable
principles of character, are chilled, or forever blasted.

In shunning this danger, other parents pass to the opposite extreme.
They put themselves too much on the footing of equals with their
children, as if little were due to superiority of relation, age, and
experience. Nothing is exacted, without the implied concession that the
child is to be a judge of the propriety of the requisition; and reason
and persuasion are employed, where simple command and obedience would be
far better. This system produces a most pernicious influence. Children
soon perceive the position, thus allowed them, and take every advantage
of it. They soon learn to dispute parental requirements, acquire habits
of forwardness and conceit, assume disrespectful manners and address,
maintain their views with pertinacity, and yield to authority with
ill-humor and resentment, as if their rights were infringed.

The medium course, is, for the parent to take the attitude of a
superior, in age, knowledge, and relation, who has a perfect right to
control every action of the child, and that, too, without giving any
reason for the requisitions. "Obey, _because your parent commands_," is
always a proper and sufficient reason.

But care should be taken, to convince the child that the parent is
conducting a course of discipline, designed to make him happy; and in
forming habits of implicit obedience, self-denial, and benevolence, the
child should have the reasons for most requisitions kindly stated;
never, however, on the demand of it, from the child, as a right, but as
an act of kindness from the parent.

It is impossible to govern children properly, especially those of strong
and sensitive feelings, without a constant effort to appreciate the
value which they attach to their enjoyments and pursuits. A lady, of
great strength of mind and sensibility, once told the writer, that one
of the most acute periods of suffering, in her whole life, was
occasioned by the burning up of some milkweed-silk, by her mother. The
child had found, for the first time, some of this shining and beautiful
substance; was filled with delight at her discovery; was arranging it in
parcels; planning its future uses, and her pleasure in showing it to her
companions,--when her mother, finding it strewed over the carpet,
hastily swept it into the fire, and that, too, with so indifferent an
air, that the child fled away, almost distracted with grief and
disappointment. The mother little realized the pain she had inflicted,
but the child felt the unkindness, so severely, that for several days
her mother was an object almost of aversion.

While, therefore, the parent needs to carry on a steady course, which
will oblige the child always to give up its will, whenever its own good,
or the greater claims of others, require it, this should be constantly
connected with the expression of a tender sympathy, for the trials and
disappointments thus inflicted. Those, who will join with children, and
help them along in their sports, will learn, by this mode, to understand
the feelings and interests of childhood; while, at the same time, they
secure a degree of confidence and affection, which cannot be gained so
easily, in any other way. And it is to be regretted, that parents so
often relinquish this most powerful mode of influence, to domestics and
playmates, who often use it in the most pernicious manner. In joining in
such sports, older persons should never relinquish the attitude of
superiors, or allow disrespectful manners or address. And respectful
deportment is never more cheerfully accorded, than in seasons, when
young hearts are pleased, and made grateful, by having their tastes and
enjoyments so efficiently promoted.

Next to the want of all government, the two most fruitful sources of evil
to children, are, _unsteadiness_ in government, and _over-government_.
Most of the cases, in which the children of sensible and conscientious
parents turn out badly, result from one or the other of these causes. In
cases of unsteady government, either one parent is very strict, severe,
and unbending, and the other excessively indulgent, or else the parents
are sometimes very strict and decided, and at other times allow
disobedience to go unpunished. In such cases, children, never knowing
exactly when they can escape with impunity, are constantly tempted to
make the trial.

The bad effects of this, can be better appreciated, by reference to one
important principle of the mind. It is found to be universally true,
that, when any object of desire is put entirely beyond the reach of hope
or expectation, the mind very soon ceases to long for it, and turns to
other objects of pursuit. But, so long as the mind is hoping for some
good, and making efforts to obtain it, any opposition excites irritable
feelings. Let the object be put entirely beyond all hope, and this
irritation soon ceases. In consequence of this principle, those
children, who are under the care of persons of steady and decided
government, know, that whenever a thing is forbidden or denied, it is
out of the reach of hope; the desire, therefore, soon ceases, and they
turn to other objects. But the children of undecided, or of
over-indulgent parents, never enjoy this preserving aid. When a thing is
denied, they never know but either coaxing may win it, or disobedience
secure it without any penalty, and so they are kept in that state of
hope and anxiety, which produces irritation, and tempts to
insubordination. The children of very indulgent parents, and of those
who are undecided and unsteady in government, are very apt to become
fretful, irritable, and fractious.

Another class of persons, in shunning this evil, go to the other
extreme, and are very strict and pertinacious, in regard to every
requisition. With them, fault-finding and penalties abound, until the
children are either hardened into indifference of feeling, and
obtuseness of conscience, or else become excessively irritable, or

It demands great wisdom, patience, and self-control, to escape these two
extremes. In aiming at this, there are parents, who have found the
following maxims of very great value. First, Avoid, as much as possible,
the multiplication of rules and absolute commands. Instead of this, take
the attitude of advisers. "My child, this is improper, I wish you would
remember not to do it." This mode of address answers for all the little
acts of heedlessness, awkwardness, or ill-manners, so frequently
occurring, with children. There are cases, when direct and distinct
commands are needful; and, in such cases, a penalty for disobedience
should be as steady and sure as the laws of Nature. Where such
steadiness, and certainty of penalty, attend disobedience, children no
more think of disobeying, than they do of putting their fingers in a
burning candle.

The next maxim, is, Govern by rewards, more than by penalties. Such
faults as wilful disobedience, lying, dishonesty, and indecent or
profane language, should be punished with severe penalties, after a
child has been fully instructed in the evil of such practices. But all
the constantly-recurring faults of the nursery, such as ill-humor,
quarrelling, carelessness, and ill-manners, may, in a great many cases,
be regulated by gentle and kind remonstrances, and by the offer of some
reward for persevering efforts to form a good habit. It is very
injurious and degrading to any mind, to be kept under the constant fear
of penalties. _Love_ and _hope_ are the principles that should be mainly
relied on, in forming the habits of childhood.

Another maxim, and perhaps the most difficult, is, Do not govern by the
aid of severe and angry tones. A single example will be given to
illustrate this maxim. A child is disposed to talk and amuse itself, at
table. The mother requests it to be silent, except when needing to ask
for food, or when spoken to by its older friends. It constantly forgets.
The mother, instead of rebuking, in an impatient tone, says, "My child,
you must remember not to talk. I will remind you of it four times more,
and after that, whenever you forget, you must leave the table, and wait
till we are done." If the mother is steady in her government, it is not
probable that she will have to apply this slight penalty more than once
or twice. This method is far more effectual, than the use of sharp and
severe tones, to secure attention and recollection, and often answers
the purpose, as well as offering some reward.

The writer has been in some families, where the most efficient and
steady government has been sustained, without the use of a cross or
angry tone; and in others, where a far less efficient discipline was
kept up, by frequent severe rebukes and angry remonstrances. In the
first case, the children followed the example set them, and seldom used
severe tones to each other; in the latter, the method employed by the
parents, was imitated by the children; and cross words and angry tones
resounded from morning till night, in every portion of the household.

Another important maxim, is, Try to keep children in a happy state of
mind. Every one knows, by experience, that it is easier to do right, and
submit to rule, when cheerful and happy, than when irritated. This is
peculiarly true of children; and a wise mother, when she finds her child
fretful and impatient, and thus constantly doing wrong, will often
remedy the whole difficulty, by telling some amusing story, or by
getting the child engaged in some amusing sport. This strongly shows the
importance of learning to govern children without the employment of
angry tones, which always produce irritation.

Children of active, heedless temperament, or those who are odd, awkward,
or unsuitable, in their remarks and deportment, are often essentially
injured, by a want of patience and self-control in those who govern
them. Such children, often possess a morbid sensibility, which they
strive to conceal, or a desire of love and approbation, which preys like
a famine on the soul. And yet, they become objects of ridicule and
rebuke, to almost every member of the family, until their sensibilities
are tortured into obtuseness or misanthropy. Such children, above all
others, need tenderness and sympathy. A thousand instances of mistake or
forgetfulness should be passed over, in silence, while opportunities for
commendation and encouragement should be diligently sought.

In regard to the formation of habits of self-denial, in childhood, it is
astonishing to see how parents, who are very sensible, often seem to
regard this matter. Instead of inuring their children to this duty, in
early life, so that by habit it may be made easy in after-days, they
seem to be studiously seeking to cut them off, from every chance to
secure such a preparation. Every wish of the child is studiously
gratified; and, where a necessity exists, of crossing its wishes, some
compensating pleasure is offered, in return. Such parents, often
maintain that nothing shall be put on their table, which their children
may not join them in eating. But where, so easily and surely as at the
daily meal, can that habit of self-denial be formed, which is so needful
in governing the appetites, and which children must acquire, or be
ruined? The food which is proper for grown persons, is often unsuitable
for children; and this is a sufficient reason for accustoming them to
see others partake of delicacies, which they must not share. Requiring
children to wait till others are helped, and to refrain from
conversation at table, except when addressed by their elders, is another
mode of forming habits of self-denial and self-control. Requiring them
to help others, first, and to offer the best to others, has a similar

In forming the moral habits of children, it is wise to take into account
the peculiar temptations to which they are to be exposed. The people of
this Nation are eminently a trafficking people; and the present standard
of honesty, as to trade and debts, is very low, and every year seems
sinking still lower. It is, therefore, pre-eminently important, that
children should be trained to strict _honesty_, both in word and deed.
It is not merely teaching children to avoid absolute lying, which is
needed. _All kinds of deceit_ should be guarded against; and all kinds
of little dishonest practices be strenuously opposed. A child should be
brought up with the determined principle, never to _run in debt_, but to
be content to live in an humbler way, in order to secure that true
independence, which should be the noblest distinction of an American

There is no more important duty, devolving upon a mother, than the
cultivation of habits of modesty and propriety in young children. All
indecorous words or deportment, should be carefully restrained; and
delicacy and reserve studiously cherished. It is a common notion, that
it is important to secure these virtues to one sex, more than to the
other; and, by a strange inconsistency, the sex most exposed to danger,
is the one selected as least needing care. But a wise mother will be
especially careful, that her sons are trained to modesty and purity of

But few mothers are sufficiently aware of the dreadful penalties which
often result from indulged impurity of thought. If children, in _future_
life, can be preserved from licentious associates, it is supposed that
their safety is secured. But the records of our insane retreats, and the
pages of medical writers, teach, that even in solitude, and without
being aware of the sin or the danger, children may inflict evils on
themselves, which not unfrequently terminate in disease, delirium, and
death. Every mother and every teacher, therefore, carefully avoiding all
explanation of the mystery, should teach the young, that the indulgence
of impure thoughts and actions, is visited by the most awful and
terrific penalties. Disclosing the details of vice, in order to awaken
dread of its penalties, is a most dangerous experiment, and often leads
to the very evils feared. The attempts made, in late years, to guard
children from future dangers, by circulating papers, and books of
warning and information, have led to such frightful results, that it is
hoped the experiment will never again be pursued. The safest course, is,
to cultivate habits of modesty and delicacy, and to teach, that all
impure thoughts, words, and actions, are forbidden by God, and are often
visited by the most dreadful punishment. At the same time, it is
important for mothers to protect the young mind from false notions of
delicacy. It should be shown, that whatever is necessary, to save from
suffering or danger, must be met, without shame or aversion; and that
all, which God has instituted, is wise, and right, and pure.

It is in reference to these dangers, that mothers and teachers should
carefully guard the young from those highly-wrought fictions, which lead
the imagination astray; and especially from that class of licentious
works, made interesting by genius and taste, which have flooded this
Country, and which are often found on the parlor table, even of moral
and Christian people. Of this class, the writings of Bulwer stand
conspicuous. The only difference, between some of his works and the
obscene prints, for vending which men suffer the penalties of the law,
is, that the last are so gross, as to revolt the taste and startle the
mind to resistance, while Bulwer presents the same ideas, so clothed in
the fascinations of taste and genius, as most insidiously to seduce the
unwary. It seems to be the chief aim of this licentious writer, to make
thieves, murderers, and adulterers, appear beautiful, refined, and
interesting. It is time that all virtuous persons in the community
should rise in indignation, not only against the writers, but the
venders of such poison.


[O] See his 'Physiology of Digestion considered with relation to the
Principles of Dietetics,' issued by the Publishers of this work.

[P] The writer is not an advocate for _total_ abstinence from animal
food. She coincides with the best authorities, in thinking that adults
eat too much; that children, while growing, should eat very little, and
quite young children, none at all.



Every woman who has the care of young children, or of a large family, is
frequently called upon, to advise what shall be done, for some one who
is indisposed; and often, in circumstances where she must trust solely
to her own judgement. In such cases, some err, by neglecting to do any
thing at all, till the patient is quite sick; but a still greater number
err, from excessive and injurious dosing.

The two great causes of the ordinary slight attacks of illness, in a
family, are, sudden chills, which close the pores of the skin, and thus
affect the throat, lungs, or bowels; and the excessive or improper use
of food. In most cases, of illness from the first cause, bathing the
feet, and some aperient drink to induce perspiration, are suitable
remedies. A slight cathartic, also, is often serviceable. In case of
illness from improper food, or excess in eating, _fasting_, for one or
two meals, to give the system time and chance to relieve itself, is the
safest remedy. Sometimes, a gentle cathartic may be needful; but it is
best first to try fasting.

The following extract from a discourse of Dr. Burne, before the London
Medical Society, contains important information. "In civilized life, the
causes, which are most generally and continually operating in the
production of diseases, are, affections of the mind, improper diet, and
retention of the intestinal excretions. The undue retention of
excrementitious matter, allows of the absorption of its more liquid
parts, which is a cause of great impurity to the blood, and the
excretions, thus rendered hard and knotty, act more or less as
extraneous substances, and, by their irritation, produce a determination
of blood to the intestines and to the neighboring viscera, which
ultimately ends in inflammation. It also has a great effect on the whole
system; causes a determination of blood to the head, which oppresses the
brain and dejects the mind; deranges the functions of the stomach;
causes flatulency; and produces a general state of discomfort."

Dr. Combe remarks, on this subject, "In the natural and healthy state,
under a proper system of diet, and with sufficient exercise, the bowels
are relieved regularly, once every day." _Habit_ "is powerful in
modifying the result, and in sustaining healthy action when once fairly
established. Hence the obvious advantage of observing as much
regularity, in relieving the system, as in taking our meals." It is
often the case that soliciting Nature at a regular period, once a day,
will remedy constipation, without medicine, and induce a regular and
healthy state of the bowels. "When, however, as most frequently
happens, the constipation arises from the absence of all assistance from
the abdominal and respiratory muscles, the first step to be taken, is,
again to solicit their aid; first, by removing all impediments to free
respiration, such as stays, waistbands and belts; secondly, by resorting
to such active exercises, as shall call the muscles into full and
regular action; and, lastly, by proportioning the quantity of food to
the wants of the system, and the condition of the digestive organs. If
we employ these means, systematically and perseveringly, we shall rarely
fail in at last restoring the healthy action of the bowels, with little
aid from medicine. But if we neglect these modes, we may go on, for
years, adding pill to pill, and dose to dose, without ever attaining the
end at which we aim." There is no point, in which a woman needs more
knowledge and discretion, than in administering remedies for what seem
slight attacks, which are not supposed to require the attention of a
physician. It is little realized, that purgative drugs are unnatural
modes of stimulating the internal organs, tending to exhaust them of
their secretions, and to debilitate and disturb the animal economy. For
this reason, they should be used as little as possible; and fasting, and
perspiration, and the other methods pointed out, should always be first
resorted to. When medicine must be given, it should be borne in mind,
that there are various classes of purgatives, which produce very diverse
effects. Some, like salts, operate to thin the blood, and reduce the
system; others are stimulating; and others have a peculiar operation on
certain organs. Of course, great discrimination and knowledge is needed,
in order to select the kind, which is suitable to the particular
disease, or to the particular constitution of the invalid. This shows
the folly of using the many kinds of pills, and other quack medicines,
where no knowledge can be had of their composition. Pills which are good
for one kind of disease, might operate as poison in another state of the
system. It is wise to keep always on hand some simple cathartic, for
family use, in slight attacks; and always to resort to medical advice,
whenever powerful remedies seem to be demanded.[Q] It is very common, in
cases of colds which affect the lungs or throat, to continue to try one
dose after another, for relief. It will be well to bear in mind, at such
times, that all which goes into the stomach, must be first absorbed into
the blood, before it can reach the diseased part; and that there is some
danger of injuring the stomach, or other parts of the system, by such a
variety of doses, many of which, it is probable, will be directly
contradictory in their nature, and thus neutralize any supposed benefit
they might separately impart.

It is very unwise, to tempt the appetite of a person who is indisposed.
The cessation of appetite is the warning of Nature, that the system is
in such a state, that food cannot be digested.

The following suggestions may be found useful, in regard to nursing the
sick. As nothing contributes more to the restoration of health, than
pure air, it should be a primary object, to keep a sick-room well
ventilated. At least twice in the twenty-four hours, the patient should
be well covered, and fresh air freely admitted from out of doors. After
this, if need be, the room should be restored to a proper temperature,
by the aid of a fire. Bedding and clothing should also be well aired,
and frequently changed; as the exhalations from the body, in sickness,
are peculiarly deleterious. Frequent ablutions, of the whole body, if
possible, are very useful; and for these, warm water may be employed.

The following, are useful directions for dressing a blister. Spread
thinly, on a linen cloth, an ointment, composed of one third of beeswax
to two thirds of tallow; lay this upon a linen cloth, folded many times.
With a sharp pair of scissors, make an aperture in the lower part of the
bag of water, with a little hole, above, to give it vent. Break the
raised skin as little as possible. Lay on the cloth, spread as directed.
The blister, at first, should be dressed as often as three times in a
day, and the dressing renewed each time.

A sick-room should always be kept very neat, and in perfect order; and
all haste, noise, and bustle, should be avoided. In order to secure
neatness, order, and quiet, in case of long illness, the following
arrangements should be made. Keep a large box for fuel, which will need
to be filled only twice in twenty-four hours. Provide, also, and keep in
the room, or an adjacent closet, a small teakettle, a saucepan, a pail
of water, for drinks and ablutions, a pitcher, a covered porringer, two
pint bowls, two tumblers, two cups and saucers, two wine glasses, two
large and two small spoons; also, a dish in which to wash these
articles; a good supply of towels, and a broom. Keep a slop-bucket, near
by, to receive the wash of the room. Procuring all these articles at
once, will save much noise and confusion.

Whenever medicine or food is given, spread a clean towel over the person
or bedclothing, and get a clean handkerchief, as nothing is more
annoying to a weak stomach, than the stickiness and soiling produced by
medicine and food. Keep the fireplace neat, and always wash all
articles, and put them in order, as soon as they are out of use.

A sick person has nothing to do, but look about the room; and when every
thing is neat and in order, a feeling of comfort is induced, while
disorder, filth, and neglect, are constant objects of annoyance, which,
if not complained of, are yet felt.

Always prepare food for the sick, in the neatest and most careful
manner. It is in sickness, that the senses of smell and taste are most
susceptible of annoyance; and often, little mistakes or negligences, in
preparing food, will take away all appetite.

Food for the sick, should be cooked on coals, that no smoke may have
access to it; and great care must be taken, to prevent any adherence to
the bottom, as this always gives a disagreeable taste.

Keeping clean handkerchiefs and towels at hand, cooling the pillows,
sponging the hands with water, swabbing the mouth with a clean linen
rag, on the end of a stick, are modes of increasing the comfort of the
sick. Always throw a shawl over a sick person, when raised up.

Be careful to understand a physician's directions, and _to obey them
implicitly_. If it be supposed that any other person knows better about
the case, than the physician, dismiss the physician, and employ that
person in his stead.

In nursing the sick, always speak gently and cheeringly; and, while you
express sympathy for their pain and trials, stimulate them to bear all
with fortitude, and with resignation to Him who has appointed the trial.
Offer to read the Bible, or other devotional books, whenever it is
suitable, and will not be deemed obtrusive.

It is always best to consult the physician, as to where medicines shall
be purchased, and to show the articles to him before using them, as
great impositions are practised in selling old, useless, and adulterated
drugs. Always put labels on vials of medicine, and keep them out of the
reach of children.

Be careful to label all powders, and particularly all _white powders_;
as many poisonous medicines, in this form, are easily mistaken for
others which are harmless.


[Q] The following electuary, by a distinguished physician, is used by
many friends of the writer, as a standing resort, in cases of
constipation, or where a gentle cathartic is needed. One recommendation
of it, is, that children always love it, and eat the pills as "good

Two ounces of powdered Senna; one ounce of Cream of Tartar; one ounce of
Sulphur; mixed with sufficient Confection of Senna, to form an
electuary. Make this into pills, of the size of peas, and give a young
child two or three, as the case may be. Taking three pills, every night,
will generally relieve constipation in an adult.



When serious accidents occur, medical aid should be immediately
procured. Till that can be done, the following directions may be useful.

When a child has any thing in its throat, first try, with the finger, to
get the article up. If this cannot be done, push it down into the
stomach, with a smooth elastic stick. If the article be a pin, sharp
bone, glass, or other cutting substance, give an emetic which will
immediately operate.

In the case of a common cut, bind the lips of the wound together, with a
rag, and put nothing else on. If the cut be large, and so situated that
rags will not bind it together, use sticking plaster, cut in strips and
laid obliquely across the cut. Sometimes it is needful to take a stitch,
with a needle and thread, on each lip of the wound, and draw the two
sides together.

If an artery be cut, it must be immediately tied up, or the person will
bleed to death. The blood from an artery is of a bright red color, and
spirts out, in regular jets, at each beat of the heart. Take up the
bleeding end of the artery, and hold it, or tie it up, till a surgeon
comes. When the artery cannot be found, and in all cases of bad cuts on
any of the limbs, apply compression; when it can be done, tie a very
tight bandage above the wound, if it be below the heart, and _below_ if
the wound be above the heart. Put a stick into the band, and twist it as
tight as can be borne, till surgical aid be obtained.

Bathe bad bruises in hot water, or hot spirits, or a decoction of bitter
herbs. _Entire rest_, is the remedy for sprains. Bathing in warm water,
or warm whiskey is very useful. A sprained leg should be kept in a
horizontal position, on a bed or sofa.

When a leg is broken, tie it to the other leg, to keep it still; and,
if possible, get a surgeon, before the limb swells. Bind a broken arm to
a piece of shingle, and keep it still, till it is set.

In case of a blow on the head, or a fall, causing insensibility, use a
mustard paste on the back of the neck and pit of the stomach, and rub
the body with spirits. After the circulation is restored, bleeding is
often necessary; but it is very dangerous to attempt it before.

In cases of bad burns, where the skin is taken off, the great aim should
be, _to keep the injured part from the air_. For this purpose, sprinkle
on flour, or apply a liniment, made of linseed oil and lime-water, in
equal quantities. Sweet-oil, on cotton, is good, and with laudanum,
alleviates pain: but many skins cannot bear the application of raw
cotton, which is sometimes very good. When a dressing is put on, do not
remove it, as it will be sure to protract the cure, by admitting the

In case of drowning, lay the person in a warm bed, or on blankets, on
the right side, with the head raised, and a little inclined forward.
Clear the mouth with the fingers, and cautiously apply hartshorn to the
nose. Raise the heat of the body, by bottles of warm water, applied to
the pit of the stomach, armpits, groins, and soles of the feet. Apply
friction to the whole body, with warm hands and cloths dipped in warm
spirits of camphor. Endeavor to produce the natural action of the lungs,
by introducing the nose of a bellows into one nostril and closing the
other, at the same time pressing on the throat, to close the gullet.
When the lungs are thus inflated, press gently on the breast and belly,
and continue the process, for a long time. Cases have been known, where
efforts have been protracted eight or ten hours, without effect, and
then have proved successful. Rolling the body on a barrel, suspending it
by the heels, giving injections of tobacco, and many other practices,
which have been common, are highly injurious. After signs of life
appear, give small quantities of wine, or spirits and water.

In cases of poisoning, from _corrosive sublimate_, beat up the whites
of twelve eggs, mix them in two quarts of water, and give a tumbler full
every three minutes, till vomiting is produced. This is the surest
remedy. When this is not at hand, fill the stomach, in like manner, with
any mucilaginous substance, such as gum and water, flaxseed, or
slippery-elm-bark tea. Flour and water, or sugar and water, in great
quantities, are next best; and if none of these be at hand, give copious
draughts of water alone.

In case of poisoning from _arsenic_, _cobalt_, or any such mineral,
administer, as soon as possible, large quantities of lime-water and
sugared-water, of warm, or even of cold water, or of flaxseed tea, or
some other mucilaginous drink, to distend the stomach and produce
immediate vomiting, and thereby eject the poison.

If opium, or any of its preparations, has been taken, in dangerous
quantities, induce vomiting, without a moment's unnecessary delay, by
giving, immediately, in _a small quantity_ of water, ten grains of
ipecac, and ten grains of sulphate of zinc, (white vitriol, which is the
most prompt emetic known,) and repeat the dose every fifteen minutes,
till the stomach is entirely emptied. Where white vitriol is not at
hand, substitute three or four grains of blue vitriol, (sulphate of
copper.) When the stomach is emptied, but not before, give, every ten
minutes, alternately, a cup of acid drink, and a cup of very strong
coffee, made by pouring a pint of boiling water on a quarter of a pound
of ground burnt coffee, and letting it stand ten minutes, and then
straining it. Continue these drinks, till the danger is over. Dash cold
water on the head, apply friction to the body, and keep the person in
constant motion, to prevent sleep.

If any kind of acid be taken, in poisonous quantities, give strong
pearlash-water. If ley, or pearlash, or any alkali be taken, give
sweet-oil; or, if this be wanting, lamp-oil; or, if neither be at hand,
give vinegar, freely.

In case of stupefaction, from the fumes of charcoal, or from entering a
well, limekiln, or coal mine, expose the person to cold air, lying on
his back, dash cold water on the head and breast, and rub the body with
spirits of camphor, vinegar, or Cologne water. Apply mustard paste to
the pit of the stomach, and use friction on the hands, feet, and whole
length of the back bone. Give some acid drink, and, when the person
revives, place him in a warm bed, in fresh air. Be prompt and

In case of bleeding at the lungs, or stomach, or throat, give a
teaspoonful of dry salt, and repeat it often. For bleeding at the nose,
pour cold water on the back of the neck, keeping the head elevated.

If a person be struck with lightning, throw pailfuls of cold water on
the head and body, and apply mustard poultices on the stomach, with
friction of the whole body, and inflation of the lungs. When no other
emetic can be found, pounded mustard seed, taken a teaspoonful at a
time, will answer. The ground mustard is not so effectual, but will do.

In case of fire, wrap a woollen blanket about you, to protect from the
fire. If the staircases are on fire, tie the corners of the sheets
together, very firmly, fasten one end to the bedstead, draw it to the
window, and let yourself down. Never read in bed, lest you fall asleep,
and the bed be set on fire. If your clothes get on fire, never run, but
lie down, and roll about till you can reach a bed or carpet to wrap
yourself in, and thus put out the fire. Keep young children in woollen
dresses, to save them from the risk of fire.

In thunderstorms, shut the doors and windows. The safest part of a room,
is its centre; and where there is a featherbed in the apartment, that
will be found the most secure resting-place.

A lightning rod, if it be well pointed, and run deep into the earth, is
a certain protection to a circle around it, whose diameter equals the
height of the rod above the highest chimney. But it protects _no
further_ than this extent.



Whenever the laws of body and mind are properly understood, it will be
allowed, that every person needs some kind of recreation; and that, by
seeking it, the body is strengthened, the mind is invigorated, and all
our duties are more cheerfully and successfully performed.

Children, whose bodies are rapidly growing, and whose nervous system is
tender and excitable, need much more amusement, than persons of mature
age. Persons, also, who are oppressed with great responsibilities and
duties, or who are taxed by great intellectual or moral excitement, need
recreations which secure physical exercise, and draw off the mind from
absorbing interests. Unfortunately, such persons are those who least
resort to amusements, while the idle, gay, and thoughtless, seek those
which are needless, and for which useful occupation would be a most
beneficial substitute.

As the only legitimate object of amusements, is, to prepare mind and
body for the proper discharge of duty, any protracting of such as
interfere with regular employments, or induce excessive fatigue, or
weary the mind, or invade the proper hours for repose, must be sinful.

In deciding what should be selected, and what avoided, the following
rules are binding. In the first place, no amusements, which inflict
needless pain, should ever be allowed. All tricks which cause fright, or
vexation, and all sports, which involve suffering to animals, should be
utterly forbidden. Hunting and fishing, for mere sport, can never be
justified. If a man can convince his children, that he follows these
pursuits to gain food or health, and not for amusement, his example may
not be very injurious. But, when children see grown persons kill and
frighten animals, for sport, habits of cruelty, rather than feelings of
tenderness and benevolence, are induced.

In the next place, we should seek no recreations, which endanger life,
or interfere with important duties. As the only legitimate object of
amusements, is to promote health, and prepare for more serious duties,
selecting those which have a directly opposite tendency, cannot be
justified. Of course, if a person feel that the previous day's
diversions have shortened the hours of needful repose, or induced a
lassitude of mind or body, instead of invigorating them, it is certain
that an evil has been done, which should never be repeated.

A third rule, is, to avoid those amusements, which experience has shown
to be so exciting, and connected with so many temptations, as to be
pernicious in tendency, both to the individual and to the community. It
is on this ground, that horse-racing and circus-riding are excluded. Not
because there is any thing positively wrong, in having men and horses
run, and perform feats of agility, or in persons looking on for the
diversion; but because experience has shown so many evils connected with
these recreations, that they should be relinquished. So with theatres.
The enacting of characters, and the amusement thus afforded, in itself
may be harmless; and possibly, in certain cases, might be useful: but
experience has shown so many evils to result from this source, that it
is deemed wrong to patronize it. So, also, with those exciting games of
chance, which are employed in gambling.

Under the same head, comes _dancing_, in the estimation of the great
majority of the religious world. Still, there are many intelligent,
excellent, and conscientious persons, who hold a contrary opinion. Such
maintain, that it is an innocent and healthful amusement, tending to
promote ease of manners, cheerfulness, social affection, and health of
mind and body; that evils are involved only in its excess; that, like
food, study, or religious excitement, it is only wrong, when not
properly regulated; and that, if serious and intelligent people would
strive to regulate, rather than banish, this amusement, much more good
would be secured.

On the other side, it is objected, not that dancing is a sin, in itself
considered, for it was once a part of sacred worship; not that it would
be objectionable, if it were properly regulated; not that it does not
tend, when used in a proper manner, to health of body and mind, to grace
of manners, and to social enjoyment: all these things are conceded. But
it is objected to, on the same ground as horse-racing, card-playing, and
theatrical entertainments; that we are to look at amusements as they
_are_, and not as they _might_ be. Horseraces might be so managed, as
not to involve cruelty, gambling, drunkenness, and every other vice. And
so might theatres and cards. And if serious and intelligent persons,
undertook to patronize these, in order to regulate them, perhaps they
would be somewhat raised from the depths, to which they are now sunk.
But such persons, know, that, with the weak sense of moral obligation
existing in the mass of society, and the imperfect ideas mankind have of
the proper use of amusements, and the little self-control, which men, or
women, or children, practise, these will not, in fact, be
thus-regulated. And they believe dancing to be liable to the same

As this recreation is actually conducted, it does not tend to produce
health of body or mind, but directly the contrary. If young and old went
out to dance together, in the open air, as the French peasants do, it
would be a very different sort of amusement, from that which is
witnessed, in a room, furnished with many lights, and filled with
guests, both expending the healthful part of the atmosphere, where the
young collect, in their tightest dresses, to protract, for several
hours, a kind of physical exertion, which is not habitual to them.
During this process, the blood is made to circulate more swiftly than
ordinary, in circumstances where it is less perfectly oxygenized than
health requires; the pores of the skin are excited by heat and
exercise; the stomach is loaded with indigestible articles, and the
quiet, needful to digestion, withheld; the diversion is protracted
beyond the usual hour for repose; and then, when the skin is made the
most highly susceptible to damps and miasms, the company pass from a
warm room to the cold night-air. It is probable, that no single
amusement can be pointed out, combining so many injurious particulars,
as this, which is so often defended as a healthful one. Even if parents,
who train their children to dance, can keep them from public balls,
(which is seldom the case,) dancing in private parlors is subject to
nearly all the same mischievous influences.

As to the claim of social benefits,--when a dancing-party occupies the
parlors, and the music begins, most of the conversation ceases; while
the young prepare themselves for future sickness, and the old look
smilingly on.

As to the claim for ease and grace of manners,--all that is gained, by
this practice, can be better secured, by Calisthenics, which, in all its
parts, embraces a much more perfect system, both of healthful exercise,
graceful movement, and pleasing carriage.

The writer was once inclined to the common opinion, that dancing was
harmless, and might be properly regulated; and she allowed a fair trial
to be made, under her auspices, by its advocates. The result was, a full
conviction, that it secured no good effect, which could not be better
gained another way; that it involved the most pernicious evils to
health, character, and happiness; and that those parents were wise, who
brought up their children with the full understanding that they were
neither to learn nor to practise the art. In the fifteen years, during
which she has had the care of young ladies, she has never known any
case, where learning this art, and following the amusement, did not have
a bad effect, either on the habits, the intellect, the feelings, or the
health. Those young ladies, who are brought up with less exciting
recreations, are uniformly likely to be the most contented and most
useful, while those, who enter the path to which this diversion leads,
acquire a relish and desire for high excitement, which make the more
steady and quiet pursuits and enjoyments of home, comparatively
tasteless. This, the writer believes to be generally the case, though
not invariably so; for there are exceptions to all general rules.

In reference to these exciting amusements, so liable to danger and
excess, parents are bound to regard the principle, which is involved in
the petition, "Lead us not into temptation." Would it not be
inconsistent, to teach this prayer, to the lisping tongue of childhood,
and then send it to the dancing-master, to acquire a love for a
diversion, which leads to constant temptations that so few find strength
to resist?

It is encouraging, to those who take this view of the subject, to find
how fast the most serious and intelligent portion of the community is
coming to a similar result. Twenty-five years ago, dancing was
universally practised by the young, as a matter of course, in every part
of the Nation. Now, in those parts of the Country, where religion and
intelligence are most extensively diffused, it is almost impossible to
get up a ball, among the more refined classes of the community. The
amusement is fast leaving this rank in society, to remain as a resource
for those, whose grade of intelligence and refinement does not relish
more elevated recreations. Still, as there is great diversity of
opinion, among persons of equal worth and intelligence, a spirit of
candor and courtesy should be practised, on both sides. The sneer at
bigotry and narrowness of views, on one side, and the uncharitable
implication of want of piety, or sense, on the other, are equally
illbred and unchristian. Truth, on this subject, is best promoted, not
by ill-natured crimination and rebuke, but by calm reason, generous
candor, forbearance, and kindness.

There is another species of amusement, which a large portion of the
religious world have been accustomed to put under the same condemnation
as the preceding. This is novel-reading. The confusion and difference of
opinion on this subject, have arisen from a want of clear and definite
distinctions. Now, as it is impossible to define what are novels and
what are not, so as to include one class of fictitious writings and
exclude every other, it is impossible to lay down any rule respecting
them. The discussion, in fact, turns on the use of those works of
imagination, which belong to the class of narratives. That this species
of reading, is not only lawful, but necessary and useful, is settled by
Divine examples, in the parables and allegories of Scripture. Of course,
the question must be, what kind of fabulous writings must be avoided,
and what allowed. In deciding this, no specific rules can be given; but
it must be a matter to be regulated by the nature and circumstances of
each case. No works of fiction, which tend to throw the allurements of
taste and genius around vice and crime, should ever be tolerated; and
all that tend to give false views of life and duty, should also be
banished. Of those, which are written for mere amusement, presenting
scenes and events that are interesting and exciting, and having no bad
moral influence, much must depend on character and circumstances. Some
minds are torpid and phlegmatic, and need to have the imagination
stimulated: such would be benefitted by this kind of reading. Others
have quick and active imaginations, and would be as much injured. Some
persons are often so engaged in absorbing interests, that any thing
innocent, which will for a short time draw off the mind, is of the
nature of a medicine; and, in such cases, this kind of reading is

There is need, also, that some men should keep a supervision of the
current literature of the day, as guardians, to warn others of danger.
For this purpose, it is more suitable for _editors_, _clergymen_, and
_teachers_, to read indiscriminately, than for any other class of
persons; for they are the guardians of the public weal, in matters of
literature, and should be prepared to advise parents and young persons
of the evils in one direction and the good in another. In doing this,
however, they are bound to go on the same principles which regulate
physicians, when they visit infected districts,--using every precaution
to prevent injury to themselves; having as little to do with pernicious
exposures, as a benevolent regard to others will allow; and faithfully
employing all the knowledge and opportunities, thus gained, for warning
and preserving others. There is much danger, in taking this course, that
men will seek the excitement of the imagination, for the mere pleasure
it affords, under the plea of preparing to serve the public, when this
is neither the aim nor the result.

In regard to the use of such works, by the young, as a general rule,
they ought not to be allowed to any, except those of a dull and
phlegmatic temperament, until the solid parts of education are secured,
and a taste for more elevated reading is acquired. If these stimulating
condiments in literature be freely used, in youth, all relish for more
solid reading, will, in a majority of cases, be destroyed. If parents
succeed in securing habits of cheerful and implicit obedience, it will
be very easy to regulate this matter, by prohibiting the reading of any
story-book, until the consent of the parent is obtained.

It is not unfrequently the case, that advocates for dancing, and the
other more exciting amusements, speak as if those, who were more strict
in these matters, were aiming to deprive the young of all diversions;
just as if, when cards, theatres, and dancing, are cut off, nothing
remains but serious and severe duties. Perhaps there has been some just
ground of objection to the course often pursued by parents, in
neglecting to provide agreeable and suitable substitutes, for the
amusements denied; but, there is a great abundance of safe, healthful,
and delightful, recreations, which all parents may secure for their
children. Some of these will here be pointed out.

One of the most useful and important, is, the cultivation of flowers and
fruits. This, especially for the daughters of a family, is greatly
promotive of health and amusement. It is with the hope, that many young
ladies, whose habits are now so formed, that they can never be induced
to a course of active domestic exercise, so long as their parents are
able to hire domestics, may yet be led to an employment, which will tend
to secure health and vigor of constitution, that so much space is given,
in this work, to directions for the cultivation of fruits and flowers.
It would be a most desirable improvement, if all female schools could be
furnished with suitable grounds, and instruments, for the cultivation of
fruits and flowers, and every inducement offered, to engage the young
ladies in this pursuit. No father, who wishes to have his daughters grow
up to be healthful women, can take a surer method to secure this end.
Let him set apart a portion of his yard and garden, for fruits and
flowers, and see that the soil is well prepared and dug over, and all
the rest may be committed to the care of the children. These would need
to be provided with a light hoe and rake, a dibble, or garden trowel, a
watering-pot, and means and opportunities for securing seeds, roots,
buds, and grafts, all which might be done at a trifling expense. Then,
with proper encouragement, and by the aid of such directions as are
contained in this work, every man, who has even half an acre, could
secure a small Eden around his premises.

In pursuing this amusement, children can also be led to acquire many
useful habits. Early rising would, in many cases, be thus secured; and
if they were required to keep their walks and borders free from weeds
and rubbish, habits of order and neatness would be induced. Benevolent
and social feelings could also be cultivated, by influencing children to
share their fruits and flowers with friends and neighbors, as well as
to distribute roots and seeds to those, who have not the means of
procuring them. A woman or a child, by giving seeds, or slips, or roots,
to a washerwoman, or a farmer's boy, thus exciting them to love and
cultivate fruits and flowers, awakens a new and refining source of
enjoyment in minds, which have few resources more elevated than mere
physical enjoyments. Our Saviour directs, in making feasts, to call, not
the rich, who can recompense again, but the poor, who can make no
returns. So children should be taught to dispense their little
treasures, not alone to companions and friends, who will probably return
similar favors; but to those who have no means of making any return. If
the rich, who acquire a love for the enjoyments of taste, and have the
means to gratify it, would aim to extend, among the poor, the cheap and
simple enjoyment of fruits and flowers, our Country would soon literally
"blossom as the rose."

If the ladies of a neighborhood would unite small contributions, and
send a list of flower-seeds and roots to some respectable and honest
florist, who would not be likely to turn them off with trash, they could
divide these among themselves, so as to secure an abundant variety, at a
very small expense. A bag of flower-seeds, which can be obtained, at
wholesale, for four cents, would abundantly supply a whole neighborhood;
and, by the gathering of seeds, in the Autumn, could be perpetuated.

Another very elevating and delightful recreation, for the young, is
found in _music_. Here, the writer would protest against the common
practice, in many families, of having the daughters learn to play on the
piano, whether they have a taste and an ear for music, or not. A young
lady, who cannot sing, and has no great fondness for music, does nothing
but waste time, money, and patience, in learning to play on the piano.
But all children can be taught to sing, in early childhood, if the
scientific mode of teaching music, in schools, could be introduced, as
it is in Prussia, Germany, and Switzerland. Then, young children could
read and sing music, as easily as they can read language; and might take
any tune, dividing themselves into bands, and sing off, at sight, the
endless variety of music which is prepared. And if parents of wealth
would take pains to have teachers qualified for the purpose, as they may
be at the Boston Academy, and other similar institutions, who should
teach all the young children in the community, much would be done for
the happiness and elevation of the rising generation. This is an
amusement, which children relish, in the highest degree; and which they
can enjoy, at home, in the fields, and in visits abroad.

Another domestic amusement, is, the collecting of shells, plants, and
specimens in geology and mineralogy, for the formation of cabinets. If
intelligent parents would procure the simpler works which have been
prepared for the young, and study them, with their children, a _taste_
for such recreations would soon be developed. The writer has seen young
boys, of eight and ten years of age, gathering and cleaning shells from
rivers, and collecting plants, and mineralogical specimens, with a
delight, bordering on ecstasy; and there are few, if any, who, by proper
influences, would not find this a source of ceaseless delight and

Another resource, for family diversion, is to be found in the various
games played by children, and in which the joining of older members of
the family is always a great advantage to both parties. All medical men
unite, in declaring that nothing is more beneficial to health, than
hearty laughter; and surely our benevolent Creator would not have
provided risibles, and made it a source of health and enjoyment to use
them, if it were a sin so to do. There has been a tendency to
asceticism, on this subject, which needs to be removed. Such commands,
as forbid _foolish_ laughing and jesting, "_which are not convenient_;"
and which forbid all idle words, and vain conversation, cannot apply to
any thing, except what is foolish, vain, and useless. But jokes,
laughter, and sports, when used in such a degree as tends only to
promote health, social feelings, and happiness, are neither vain,
foolish, nor "not convenient." It is the excess of these things, and not
the moderate use of them, which Scripture forbids. The prevailing temper
of the mind, should be cheerful, yet serious; but there are times, when
relaxation and laughter are proper for all. There is nothing better for
this end, than that parents and older persons should join in the sports
of childhood. Mature minds can always make such diversions more
entertaining to children, and can exert a healthful moral influence over
their minds; and, at the same time, can gain exercise and amusement for
themselves. How lamentable, that so many fathers, who could be thus
useful and happy with their children, throw away such opportunities, and
wear out soul and body, in the pursuit of gain or fame!

Another resource for children, is in the exercise of mechanical skill.
Fathers, by providing tools for their boys, and showing them how to make
wheelbarrows, carts, sleds, and various other articles, contribute both
to the physical, moral, and social, improvement of their children. And
in regard to little daughters, much more can be done, in this way, than
many would imagine. The writer, blessed with the example of a most
ingenious and industrious mother, had not only learned, before the age
of twelve, to make dolls, of various sorts and sizes, but to cut and fit
and sew every article, that belongs to a doll's wardrobe. This, which
was done for mere amusement, secured such a facility in mechanical
pursuits, that, ever afterward, the cutting and fitting of any article
of dress, for either sex, was accomplished with entire ease.

When a little girl first begins to sew, her mother can promise her a
small bed and pillows, as soon as she has sewed a patch quilt for them;
and then a bedstead, as soon as she has sewed the sheets and cases for
pillows; and then a large doll to dress, as soon as she has made the
under garments; and thus go on, till the whole contents of the
baby-house are earned by the needle and skill of its little owner. Thus,
the task of learning to sew, will become a pleasure; and every new toy
will be earned by useful exertion. A little girl can be taught, by the
aid of patterns prepared for the purpose, to cut and fit all articles
necessary for her doll. She can also be provided with a little wash-tub,
and irons, to wash and iron, and thus keep in proper order a complete
miniature domestic establishment.

Besides these recreations, there are the enjoyments secured in walking,
riding, visiting, and many others which need not be recounted. Children,
if trained to be healthful and industrious, will never fail to discover
resources of amusement; while their guardians should lend their aid to
guide and restrain them from excess.

There is need of a very great change of opinion and practice, in this
Nation, in regard to the subject of social and domestic duties. Many
sensible and conscientious men, spend all their time, abroad, in
business, except, perhaps, an hour or so at night, when they are so
fatigued, as to be unfitted for any social or intellectual enjoyment.
And some of the most conscientious men in the Country, will add, to
their professional business, public or benevolent enterprises, which
demand time, effort, and money; and then excuse themselves for
neglecting all care of their children, and efforts for their own
intellectual improvement, or for the improvement of their families, by
the plea, that they have no time for it. All this, arises from the want
of correct notions of the binding obligation of our social and domestic
duties. The main object of life, is not to secure the various
gratifications of appetite or taste, but to _form such a character_, for
ourselves and others, as will secure the greatest amount of present and
future happiness. It is of far more consequence, then, that parents
should be intelligent, social, affectionate, and agreeable, at home, and
to their friends, than that they should earn money enough to live in a
large house, and have handsome furniture. It is far more needful, for
children, that a father should attend to the formation of their
character and habits, and aid in developing their social, intellectual,
and moral nature, than it is, that he should earn money to furnish them
with handsome clothes, and a variety of tempting food.

It will be wise for those parents, who find little time to attend to
their children, or to seek amusement and enjoyment in the domestic and
social circle, because their time is so much occupied with public cares
or benevolent objects, to inquire, whether their first duty is not to
train up their own families, to be useful members of society. A man, who
neglects the mind and morals of his children, to take care of the
public, is in great danger of coming under a similar condemnation, to
that of him, who, neglecting to provide for his own household, has
"denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."

There are husbands and fathers, who conscientiously subtract time from
their business, to spend at home, in reading with their wives and
children, and in domestic amusements which at once refresh and improve.
The children of such parents will grow up with a love of home and
kindred, which will be the greatest safeguard against future
temptations, as well as the purest source of earthly enjoyment.

There are families, also, who make it a definite object to keep up
family attachments, after the children are scattered abroad; and, in
some cases, secure the means for doing this, by saving money, which
would otherwise have been spent for superfluities of food or dress. Some
families have adopted, for this end, a practice, which if widely
imitated, would be productive of extensive benefit. The method is this.
On the first day of each month, some member of the family, at each
extreme point of dispersion, takes a folio sheet, and fills a part of a
page. This is sealed and mailed to the next family, who read it, add
another contribution, and then mail it to the next. Thus the family
circular, once a month, goes from each extreme, to all the members of a
widely-dispersed family, and each member becomes a sharer in the joys,
sorrows, plans, and pursuits, of all the rest. At the same time,
frequent family meetings are sought; and the expense, thus incurred, is
cheerfully met by retrenchments in other directions. The sacrifice of
some unnecessary physical indulgence, (such, for instance, as the use of
tea and coffee,) will often purchase many social and domestic
enjoyments, a thousand times more elevating and delightful, than the
retrenched luxury.

There is no social duty, which the Supreme Lawgiver more strenuously
urges, than hospitality and kindness to strangers, who are classed with
the widow and the fatherless, as the special objects of Divine
tenderness. There are some reasons, why this duty peculiarly demands
attention from the American people.

Reverses of fortune, in this land, are so frequent and unexpected, and
the habits of the people are so migratory, that there are very many in
every part of the Country, who, having seen all their temporal plans and
hopes crushed, are now pining among strangers, bereft of wonted
comforts, without friends, and without the sympathy and society, so
needful to wounded spirits. Such, too frequently, sojourn long and
lonely, with no comforter but Him who "knoweth the heart of a stranger."

Whenever, therefore, new comers enter a community, inquiry should
immediately be made, whether they have friends and associates, to render
sympathy and kind attentions; and, when there is any need for it, the
ministries of kind neighborhood should immediately be offered. And it
should be remembered, that the first days of a stranger's sojourn, are
the most dreary, and that civility and kindness are doubled in value, by
being offered at an early period.

In social gatherings, the claims of the stranger are too apt to be
forgotten; especially, in cases where there are no peculiar attractions
of personal appearance, or talents, or high standing. Such a one should
be treated with attention, _because he is a stranger_; and when
communities learn to act more from principle, and less from selfish
impulse, on this subject, the sacred claims of the stranger will be less
frequently forgotten.

The most agreeable hospitality, to visiters, who become inmates of a
family, is, that which puts them entirely at ease. This can never be the
case, where the guest perceives that the order of family arrangements is
essentially altered, and that time, comfort, and convenience are
sacrificed, for his accommodation.

Offering the best to visiters, showing a polite regard to every wish
expressed, and giving precedence to them, in all matters of comfort and
convenience, can be easily combined with the easy freedom which makes
the stranger feel at home; and this is the perfection of hospitable



There is no point of domestic economy, which more seriously involves the
health and daily comfort of American women, than the proper construction
of houses. There are five particulars, to which attention should be
given, in building a house; namely, economy of labor, economy of money,
economy of health, economy of comfort, and good taste. Some particulars
will here be pointed out, under each of these heads.

The first, respects _economy of labor_. In deciding upon the size and
style of a house, the health and capacity of the housekeeper, and the
probabilities of securing proper domestics, ought to be the very first
consideration. If a man be uncertain as to his means for hiring service,
or if he have a feeble wife, and be where properly-qualified domestics
are scarce, it is very poor economy to build a large house, or to live
in a style which demands much labor. Every room in a house adds to the
expense involved in finishing and furnishing it, and to the amount of
labor spent in sweeping, dusting, cleaning floors, paint, and windows,
and taking care of, and repairing, its furniture. Double the size of a
house, and you double the labor of taking care of it, and so, _vice
versa_. There is, in this Country, a very great want of calculation and
economy, in this matter.

The arrangement of rooms, and the proper supply of conveniences, are
other points, in which, economy of labor and comfort is often
disregarded. For example, a kitchen will be in one story, a sitting-room
in another, and the nursery in a third. Nothing is more injurious, to a
feeble woman, than going up and down stairs; and yet, in order to gain
two large parlors, to show to a few friends, or to strangers, immense
sacrifices of health, comfort, and money, are made. If it be possible,
the nursery, sitting-parlor, and kitchen, ought always to be on the same

The position of wells and cisterns, and the modes of raising and
carrying water, are other particulars, in which, economy of labor and
comfort is sadly neglected. With half the expense usually devoted to a
sideboard or sofa, the water used from a well or cistern can be so
conducted, as that, by simply turning a cock, it will flow to the place
where it is to be used.

A want of economy, in labor and in money, is often seen in the shape and
arrangement of houses, and in the style of ornaments and furniture. A
_perfect square_, encloses more rooms, at less expense, than any other
shape; while it has less surface exposed to external cold, and can be
most easily warmed and ventilated. And the farther a house is removed
from this shape, the more the expense is increased. Wings and kitchens
built out, beyond a house, very much increase expense, both in building
and warming them.

Piazzas and porticoes are very expensive; and their cost would secure
far more comfort, if devoted to additional nursery or kitchen
conveniences. Many kinds of porticoes cost as much as one additional
room in the house. Houses can be so constructed, that one staircase will
answer for both kitchen and parlour use, as may be seen in the engraving
on page 269, (Fig. 27.) This saves the expense and labor usually devoted
to a large hall and front staircase.

Much money is often worse than wasted, by finical ornaments, which are
fast going out of fashion. One of the largest, most beautiful, and
agreeable, houses, the writer was ever in, was finished with doors,
windows, and fireplaces, in even a plainer style than any given in the
subsequent drawings.

The position of fireplaces has much to do with economy of expense in
warming a house. Where the fireplace is in an outer wall, one third of
the heat passes out of doors, which would be retained in the house, if
the chimney were within the rooms. A house, contrived like the one
represented in the engraving on page 272, (Fig. 32,) which can be heated
by a stove or chimney at X, may be warmed with less fuel than one of any
other construction.[R]

_Economy of health_ is often disregarded, by placing wells, cisterns,
and privies, so that persons, in the perspiration of labor, or the
debility of disease, are obliged to go out of doors in all weathers.
Figure 35, on page 276, shows the proper arrangement of such
conveniences. The placing of an outside door, for common use, in a
sitting-room, as is frequent at the West and South, is detrimental to
health. In such cases, children, in their sports, or persons who labor,
are thrown into perspiration, by exercise, the door is thrown open, a
chill ensues, and fever, bowel complaints, or bilious attacks, are the
result. A long window, extending down to the floor, which can be used as
a door, in Summer, and be tightly closed, at the bottom, in Winter,
secures all the benefits, without the evils, of an outside door.

Constructing houses, without open fireplaces in chambers, or any other
mode of ventilation, is another sad violation of the economy of health.
Feeble constitutions in children, and ill health to domestics, are often
caused by this folly.

The _economy of comfort_ is often violated, by arrangements made for
domestics. Many a woman has been left to endure much hard labor and
perplexity, because she chose to have money spent on handsome parlors
and chambers, for company, which should have been devoted to providing a
comfortable kitchen and chambers for domestics. Cramping the
conveniences and comfort of a family, in order to secure elegant rooms,
to show to company, is a weakness and folly, which it is hoped will
every year become less common.

The construction of houses with reference to _good taste_, is a
desirable, though less important, item. The beauty of a house depends
very much upon propriety of proportions, color, and ornament. And it is
always as cheap, and generally cheaper, to build a house in agreement
with the rules of good taste, than to build an awkward and
ill-proportioned one.

_Plans of Houses and Domestic Conveniences._

The following plans are designed chiefly for persons in moderate
circumstances, and have especial reference to young housekeepers.

Every year, as the prosperity of this Nation increases, good domestics
will decrease, and young mothers are hereafter to be called to
superintend and perform all branches of domestic business, to nurse
children, direct ignorant domestics, attend the sick, entertain company,
and fulfil all other family duties; and this, too, in a majority of
cases, with delicate constitutions, or impaired health. Every man,
therefore, in forming plans for a future residence, and every woman who
has any influence in deciding such matters, ought to make these
probabilities the chief basis of their calculations.[S]

[Illustration: Fig. 17.]

[Illustration: Fig. 18.


_a_, Porch.
_b_, Parlor, 15 by 16 feet.
_c_, Dining-room, 15 by 16 feet.
_d, d_, Small Bedrooms.
_e_, Stairs.
_f, f, f_, Closets.
_g_, Pantry.
_h_, Store-closet.
_i, i, i_, Fireplaces.
_j_, Kitchen.
_k_, Bedpress.
_z_, Cellar door.

Scale of Feet.]

The plan, exhibited in Figures 17, and 18, is that of a cottage, whose
chief exterior beauty is its fine proportions. It should be painted

Fig. 17, is the _elevation_, or the front view of the exterior. Fig. 18,
is the ground-plan, in which, an entire break in the wall, represents a
door, and a break with a line across it, a window. When a cross x is put
by a door, it indicates into which room the door swings, and where the
hinges should be put, as the comfort of a fireside very much depends on
the way in which the doors are hung. A scale of measurement is given at
the bottom of the drawings, by which, the size of all parts can be
measured. The ten small divisions, are each one foot. The longest
divisions are ten feet each.

In the ground-plan, (Fig. 18,) _a_, is the porch, which projects enough
to afford an entrance to the two adjacent rooms, and thus avoids the
evil of an outside door to a sitting-room. If a door be wanted in these
rooms, the front windows can be made to extend down to the floor, so as
to serve as doors in Summer, and be tightly closed in Winter. The
parlor, _b_, has the bedpress, _k_, and the closet, _f_, adjoining it.
Figure 19 is intended to represent this side of the room.

[Illustration: Fig. 19.

Scale of Feet for the Doors.]

The two large doors, in the centre, open into the bedpress, and one of
the smaller ones into the closet, _f_. The other, can either be a false
door, in order to secure symmetry, or else a real one, opening into the
kitchen, _j_.

A room, thus arranged, can be made to serve as a genteel parlor, for
company, during the day, when all these doors can be closed. At night,
the doors of the bedpress being opened, it is changed to an airy
bedroom, while the closets, _f, f_, serve to conceal all accommodations
pertaining to a bedroom. The bedpress is just large enough to receive a
bed; and under it, if need be, might be placed a trucklebed, for young
children. The eating-room, _c_, has the small bedroom, _d_, adjoining
it, which, by leaving the door open, at night, will be sufficiently airy
for a sleeping-room. The kitchen, _j_, has a smaller bedroom, _d_,
attached to it, which will hold a narrow single bed for a domestic; and,
if need be, a narrow trucklebed under it, for a child. The staircase to
the garret, can either be placed in the eating-room, or in the small
entry. A plan for back accommodations is shown in Fig. 35, (page 276.)
These should be placed in the rear of the kitchen, so as not to cover
the window.

A house like this, will conveniently accommodate a family of six or
eight persons; but some economy and contrivance will be needed, in
storing away articles of dress and bedclothing. For this end, in the
bedpress, _k_, of the parlor, _b_, (Fig. 18,) a wide shelf may be
placed, two feet from the ceiling, where winter bedding, or folded
clothing, can be stowed, while a short curtain in front, hung from the
wall, will give a tidy look, and keep out dust. Under this shelf, if
need be, pegs can be placed, to hold other articles; and a curtain be
hung from the edge of the shelf, to conceal and protect them. Both the
closets, _f, f_, should have shelves and drawers. The garret can have a
window inserted in the roof, and thus be made serviceable for storage.

[Illustration: Fig. 20.]

Figure 20 represents a fireplace and mantelpiece, in a style
corresponding with the doors.

Such a cottage as this, could be built for from five hundred to nine
hundred dollars, according as the expense of labor in the place, and the
excellence of the materials and labor, may vary.

[Illustration: Fig. 21.]

Figures 21 and 22, show the elevation and ground-plan of a cottage, in
which the rooms are rather more agreeably arranged, than in the former
plan. The elevation, (Fig. 21,) has a piazza, running across the whole
front. This would cost nearly two hundred dollars; and, for this sum,
another story might be added. An architect told the writer, that he
could build the two-story house, (Fig. 23 and 24,) without a piazza,
for the same sum, as this cottage, _with_ one. This shows the poor
economy of these appendages.

The ground-plan, (Fig. 22,) will be understood, from the explanation
appended to it.

[Illustration: Fig. 22.

Scale of Feet.

_a_, Porch.
_b_, Entry.
_c_, Stairs.
_d_, Parlor, 16 by 20 feet.
_e_, Dining-room, 16 by 16 feet.
_f_, Kitchen.
_g, g, g_, Bedpresses.
_h, h, h, h_, Closets.
_i_, Store-closet.
_j_, Back entry and Sink.
_p_, Cellar stairs.
_o, o, o_, Fireplaces.]

The parlor, _d_, is designed to have the doors (shown in Fig. 19) placed
at the end, where is the bedpress, _g_. This will make it a handsome
parlor, by day, and yet allow it to be used as a bedroom, at night. The
bedpresses, in the other rooms, can have less expensive doors. A window
is put in each bedpress, to secure proper ventilation. These should be
opened, to air the bed, on leaving it. These can be fitted up with
shelves, pegs, and curtains, as before described. If the elevation of
the first cottage be preferred to this, as being less expensive, it can
be used, by altering it a little; thus, instead of the projection for
the entry, make a slight projection, of the width of one brick, to
preserve the same general outside appearance. Let the windows extend
down to the floor, and the beauty of symmetry will also be preserved.

[Illustration: Fig. 23.


_a_, Entry.
_b_, Stairs.
_c_, Parlor, 16 by 20 feet.
_d_, Kitchen, 14 by 14 feet.
_e_, Store-closet.
_f_, Pantry.
_g_, Sinkroom.
_h_, Closet.
_i, i_, Fireplaces.
_n_, Cellar door.
_o_, Oven.
_y_, Furnace.
_z_, Sink.

Scale of Feet.]

[Illustration: Fig. 24.

Second Story.

_a_, Stairs.
_b_, Passage.
_c, c, c_, Bedrooms.
_d, d, d, d_, Closets.
_e, e_, Fireplaces.
_f_, Nursery.
_g_, Room for young children.]

The plans, shown in Fig. 23 and 24, are designed for families, where
most domestic labor is to be done without the aid of domestics. The
parlor, _c_, is for a sitting-room, and for company. The room, _d_, is
the eating-room; where, also, the ironing and other nicer family work
can be done. In the small room, _g_, either an oven and boiler, or a
cooking-stove, can be placed. The elevation, shown in Fig. 25, is
designed for the front of this house.

[Illustration: Fig. 25.]

[Illustration: Fig. 26.]

Figures 27 and 28, are plans of a two-story house, on a larger scale,
with a concealed staircase, for front and back use. The elevation, Fig.
26, is designed for this plan.

[Illustration: Fig. 27.


_b, b_, Entry.
_c_, Stairs.
_d_, Parlor, 16 by 20 feet.
_e_, Dining-room, 15 by 16 feet.
_f_, Kitchen, 15 by 16 feet.
_g, g, g_, Closets.
_h_, Store-closet.
_i_, Back entry.
_j_, Pantry.
_k, k, k_, Fireplaces.
_x_, Cellar stairs.]

[Illustration: Fig. 28.

Second Story.

_a, a, a, a_, Bedrooms.
_b_, Stairs.
_c, c, c_, Closets.
_d_, Passage.
_e, e, e_, Fireplaces.
_y_, Garret stairs.]

[Illustration: Fig. 29.


_b_, Entry.
_c_, Parlor, 17 by 17 feet.
_d_, Dining-room, 13 by 15 feet.
_e_, Parlor or Bedroom, 17 by 17 feet.
_f_, Kitchen, 19 by 17 feet.
_g_, Stairs.
_h_, Store-closet.
_i, i, i_, Closets.
_n, n, n, n_, Fireplaces.
_o_, Folding-doors.
_p_, Pegs for over-garments.
_z_, Cellar stairs.]

[Illustration: Fig. 30.

Second Story.

_a, a, a, a, a_, Bedrooms.
_b_, Stairs.
_c_, Passage.
_d, d, d, d_, Closets.
_e, e, e, e_, Fireplaces.]

Figures 29 and 30, are plans for a larger house, which can have either
of the elevations, Fig. 25 or 26, adapted to it. These also have a
concealed staircase, for front and back use. If a nursery, or bedroom,
is wished, on the ground-floor, the back parlor, _e_, can be taken; in
which case, the closets, _i_, _i_, are very useful. To prevent noise
from reaching the front parlor, two sets of folding-doors, each side of
the passage, _o_, could be placed. With this arrangement, these rooms
could be used, sometimes as two parlors, opening into each other, by
folding doors, and at other times, as a nursery and parlor. In this
plan, the storeroom, _h_, and china-closet, _i_, between the kitchen and
eating-room, are a great convenience.

Figures 31 and 32, present the plan of a Gothic cottage, which secures
the most economy of _labor_ and _expense_, with the greatest amount of
_convenience and comfort_, which the writer has ever seen.

[Illustration: Fig. 31.]

The elevation, (Fig. 31,) exhibits the front view. It has a recess in
the central part, under which, is the door, with a window on each side
of it. This forms a piazza; and into this, and a similar one at the back
of the house, the two centre parlors open.

[Illustration: Fig. 32.]

In the centre of the house, (see Fig. 32,) are the two parlors, _b_ and
_c_; the back one to be used as an eating-room. At X, can be placed,
either a chimney, with doors on each side of the fireplace, or, (which
is the most agreeable,) folding-doors, which can be thrown open in
Summer, thus making a large saloon, through the house, from one piazza
to the other. In this case, the parlors are warmed by a large stove, set
near the folding-doors, which would easily warm both parlors and one or
two adjacent rooms. In Winter, the outside doors, opening to the
piazzas, should be fastened and calked, and the side entry, at _d_, be
used. At _e_, is the nursery, with the bedpress, _g_, which, being
closed by day, makes a retired parlor for the mother. At _n_, is the
children's playroom and sleeping-room, adjoining the mother's room. At
_k_, is the kitchen, adjacent to the eating-room, with the storeroom,
_e_, and the closets, _m_, _m_, one for the eating-room, and one for the
kitchen utensils. At _i_, is a parlor, which can be used for a study or
library, by the master of the family; while the adjacent bedpress, _j_,
renders it a convenient lodging-room, for guests. Another lodging-room,
is at _h_; and in the attic, is space enough for several comfortable
lodging-rooms. A window in the roof, on the front and back, like the one
on Wadsworth's Cottage, (Fig. 33,) could be placed over the front door,
to light the chambers in the attic. A double roof in the attic, with a
current of air between, secures cool chambers. The closets are marked
_o_, and the fireplaces _p_. The stairs to the attic are at _q_. By this
arrangement, the housekeeper has her parlor, sleeping-room, nursery, and
kitchen, on the same floor, while the rooms with bedpresses, enable her
to increase either parlors or lodging-rooms, at pleasure, without
involving the care of a very large and expensive house.

Figure 33, is the representation of a cottage, built by Daniel
Wadsworth, Esq., in the vicinity of Hartford, Connecticut; and is on a
plan, which, though much smaller, is very similar to the plan
represented in Fig. 32. It serves to show the manner in which the
_roofs_ should be arranged, in Fig. 31, which, being seen exactly in
front, does not give any idea of the mode of this arrangement. The
elevation of Wadsworth's cottage, could be taken for the ground-plan
shown in Fig. 32, if it be preferred to the other.

Both this cottage, and all the other plans, require a woodhouse, and the
conveniences connected with it, which are represented in Fig. 35, (page
276.) For these Gothic cottages, an appendage of this sort should be in
keeping with the rest, having windows, like those in the little
Summer-house in the drawing, and battlements, as on the top of the wings
of the barn. The ornaments on the front of the cottage, and the pillars
of the portico, made simply of the trunks of small trees, give a
beautiful rural finish, and their expense is trifling. In this picture,
the trees could not be placed as they are in reality, because they would
hide the buildings.

[Illustration: Fig. 33.]

In arranging yards and grounds, the house should be set back, as in the
drawing of Wadsworth's cottage; and, instead of planting shade-trees in
straight lines, or scattering them about, as single trees, they should
be arranged in clusters, with large openings for turf, flowers, and
shrubbery, which never flourish well under the shade and dropping of
trees. This also secures spots of dark and cool shade, even when trees
are young.

In arranging shade-trees tastefully around such a place, a large cluster
might be placed on each side of the gate; another on the circular
grass-plot, at the side of the house; another at a front corner; and
another at a back corner. Shrubbery, along the walks, and on the
circular plot, in front, and flowers close to the house, would look
well. The barn, also, should have clusters of trees near it; and
occasional single trees, on the lawn, would give the graceful ease and
variety seen in nature.

Figure 34, represents the accommodations for securing water with the
least labor. It is designed for a well or cistern under ground. The
reservoir, R, may be a half hogshead, or something larger, which may be
filled once a day, from the pump, by a man, or boy.

[Illustration: Fig. 34.

_P_, Pump. _L_, Steps to use when pumping. _R_, Reservoir. _G_,
Brickwork to raise the Reservoir. _B_, A large Boiler. _F_, Furnace,
beneath the Boiler. _C_, Conductor of cold water. _H_, Conductor of hot
water. _K_, Cock for letting cold water into the Boiler. _S_, Pipe to
conduct cold water to a cock over the kitchen sink. _T_, Bathing-tub,
which receives cold water from the Conductor, _C_, and hot water from
the Conductor, _H_. _W_, Partition separating the Bathing-room from the
Wash-room. _Y_, Cock to draw off hot water. _Z_, Plug to let off the
water from the Bathing-tub into a drain.]

The conductor, C, should be a lead pipe, which, instead of going over
the boiler, should be bent along behind it. From S, a branch sets off,
which conducts the cold water to the sink in the kitchen, where it
discharges with a cock. H, is a conductor from the lower part of the
boiler, made of copper, or some metal not melted by great heat; and at
Y, a cock is placed, to draw off hot water. Then the conductor passes to
the bathing-tub, where is another cock. At Z, the water is let off from
the bathing-tub. By this arrangement, great quantities of hot and cold
water can be used, with no labor in carrying, and with very little labor
in raising it.

In case a cistern is built above ground, it can be placed as the
reservoir is, and then all the labor of pumping is saved.

[Illustration: Fig. 35.

_A_, Boiler and furnace.
_B_, Bathing-room.
_C_, Reservoir.
_D_, Pump.
_E_, Wash-form.
_F_, Sink.
_G_, Kitchen.
_H_, Woodpile.
_I_, Large doors.
_i_,_i_, Bins for coal and ashes.
_O_, Window.
_P_, _P_, Privies.
_T_, Bathing-tub.
_V_, Door.]

Fig. 35, is the plan of a building for back-door accommodations. At _A_,
_C_, _D_, _E_, are accommodations shown in Fig. 34. The bathing-room is
adjacent to the boiler and reservoir, to receive the water. The privy,
_P_, _P_, should have two apartments, as indispensable to healthful
habits in a family. A window should be placed at _O_, and a door, with
springs or a weight to keep it shut, should be at _V_. Keeping the
window open, and the door shut, will prevent any disagreeable effects in
the house. At _G_, is the kitchen, and at _F_, the sink, which should
have a conductor and cock from the reservoir. _H_, is the place for
wood, where it should in Summer be stored for Winter. A bin, for coal,
and also a brick receiver, for ashes, should be in this part. Every
woman should use her influence to secure all these conveniences; even if
it involves the sacrifice of the piazza, or "the best parlor."

[Illustration: Fig. 36.

Front View.

Side View.]

Fig. 36, is a latticed portico, which is cheap, and answers all the
purposes of a more expensive one. It should be solid, overhead, to turn
off the rain, and creepers should be trained over it. A simple latticed
arch, over a door, covered with creepers, is very cheap, and serves
instead of an expensive portico.

[Illustration: Fig. 37.

_C_, Parlor ceiling.
_K_, Kitchen ceiling.]

Fig. 37, represents a _sliding closet_, or _dumb waiter_, a convenience
which saves much labor, when the kitchen is in the basement. The two
closets should be made wide, and broad enough to receive a common
waiter. The chain, or rope, which passes over the wheels, should branch,
at _X_, so as to keep the closet from rubbing in its movements, when the
dishes are not set exactly in the middle, or are of unequal weights. By
this method, almost every thing needed to pass between the kitchen and
parlor can be sent up and down, without any steps. If the kitchen is not
directly under the eating-room, the sliding closet can be placed in the
vicinity of one or both. Where the place is not wide enough for two
closets like these, they can be made wider than they are long, say one
foot and six inches long, and three feet wide. A strip of wood, an inch
broad, should be fastened on the front and back of the shelves, to
prevent the dishes from being broken when they are set on carelessly.

There is nothing, which so much improves the appearance of a house and
the premises, as painting or whitewashing the tenements and fences. The
following receipts for whitewashing, answer the same purpose for wood,
brick, and stone, as oil-paint, and are much cheaper. The first, is the
receipt used for the President's house, at Washington, improved by
further experiments. The second, is a cheaper one, which the writer has
known to succeed, in a variety of cases, lasting as long, and looking as
well, as white oil-paint.


Take half a bushel of unslacked lime, and slack it with boiling water,
covering it, during the process. Strain it, and add a peck of salt,
dissolved in warm water; three pounds of ground rice, boiled to a thin
paste, put in boiling hot; half a pound of powdered Spanish whiting; and
a pound of clear glue, dissolved in warm water. Mix, and let it stand
several days. Heat it in a kettle, on a portable furnace, and apply it
as hot as possible, with a painter's or whitewash-brush.


Make whitewash, in the usual way, except that the water used should be
hot, and nearly saturated with salt. Then stir in four handfuls of fine
sand, to make it thick like cream. Coloring matter can be added to
both, making a light stone-color, a cream-color, or a light buff, which
are most suitable for buildings.


[R] Many houses are now heated, by a furnace in the cellar, which
receives pure air from out of doors, heats it, and sends it into several
rooms, while water is evaporated to prevent the air from becoming dry.
The most perfect one the writer has seen, is constructed by Mr. Fowler,
of Hartford. This method secures well-ventilated rooms, and is very
economical, where several rooms are to be warmed.

[S] Those, who are amateurs in architecture, in judging of these
designs, must take into consideration, that this is a work on domestic
_economy_, and that matters of taste, have necessarily been made
subordinate to points, involving economy of health, comfort, and
expense. Still, it is believed, that good taste has been essentially
preserved, in most of these designs.



A shallow fireplace saves wood, and gives out more heat than a deeper
one. A false back, of brick, may be put up in a deep fireplace. Hooks,
for holding up the shovel and tongs, a hearth-brush and bellows, and
brass knobs to hang them on, should be furnished to every fireplace. An
iron bar, across the andirons, aids in keeping the fire safe, and in
good order. Steel furniture is more genteel, and more easily kept in
order, than that made of brass.

Use green wood, for logs, and mix green and dry wood for the fire; and
then the woodpile will last much longer. Walnut, maple, hickory, and
oak, wood, are best, chestnut or hemlock is bad, because it snaps. Do
not buy a load, in which there are many crooked sticks. Learn how to
measure and calculate the solid contents of a load, so as not to be
cheated. Have all your wood split, and piled under cover, for Winter.
Have the green wood logs in one pile, dry wood in another, oven-wood in
another, kindlings and chips in another, and a supply of charcoal to use
for broiling and ironing, in another place. Have a brick bin, for ashes,
and never allow them to be put in wood. When quitting fires, at night,
never leave a burning stick across the andirons, nor on its end, without
quenching it. See that no fire adheres to the broom or brush; remove all
articles from the fire, and have two pails, filled with water, in the
kitchen, where they will not freeze.

_Stoves and Grates._

Rooms, heated by stoves, should always have some opening for the
admission of fresh air, or they will be injurious to health. The dryness
of the air, which they occasion, should be remedied, either by placing a
vessel, filled with water, on the stove, or by hooking a long and narrow
pan, filled with water, in front of the grate; otherwise, the lungs or
eyes may be injured. A large number of plants in a room, prevents this
dryness of the air. Openings for pipes, through floors, partitions, or
fireboards, should be surrounded by tin, to prevent their taking fire.
Lengthening a pipe, will increase its draught.

For those, who use _anthracite coal_, that which is broken or screened,
is best for grates, and the nut-coal, for small stoves. Three tons are
sufficient, in the Middle States, and four tons in the Northern, to keep
one fire through the Winter. That which is bright, hard, and clean, is
best; and that which is soft, porous, and covered with damp dust, is
poor. It will be well to provide two barrels of charcoal, for kindling,
to every ton of anthracite coal. Grates, for _bituminous_ coal, should
have a flue nearly as deep as the grate; and the bars should be round,
and not close together. The better draught there is, the less coal-dust
is made. Every grate should be furnished with a poker, shovel, tongs,
blower, coal-scuttle, and holder for the blower. The latter may be made
of woollen, covered with old silk, and hung near the fire.

Coal-stoves should be carefully put up, as cracks, in the pipe,
especially in sleeping rooms, are dangerous.

_On Lights._

Lamps are better than candles, as they give a steadier light, and do not
scatter grease, like tallow candles. The best oil, is clear, and nearly
colorless. Winter-strained oil should be used in cold weather. Lard is a
good substitute for oil, for astral and other large lamps. It is
cheaper, burns clearer, and has a less disagreeable smell. It will not
burn so well in small lamps, as in large ones. Melt it every morning, in
an old pitcher, kept for the purpose. Oil, long kept, grows thick, and
does not burn well. It is therefore best not to buy it in large
quantities. It should never be left standing in lamps, for several days,
as this spoils it, and often injures the lamps. Camphine is a kind of
oil manufactured in New York, which does not smell disagreeably, nor
make grease-spots, and gives a brighter light than the best oil. Cleanse
the insides of lamps and oil-cans, with pearlash-water. Be careful to
drain them well, and not to let any gilding, or bronze, be injured by
the pearlash-water coming in contact with it. Put one tablespoonful of
pearlash to one quart of water.

The care of lamps requires so much attention and discretion, that many
ladies choose to do this work, themselves, rather than trust it with
domestics. To do it properly, provide the following things:--An old
waiter, to hold all the articles used; a lamp-filler, with a spout,
small at the end, and turned up to prevent oil from dripping; a ball of
wickyarn, and a basket to hold it; a lamp-trimmer, made for the purpose,
or a pair of _sharp_ scissors; a small soap-cup and soap; some pearlash,
in a broad-mouthed bottle; and several soft cloths, to wash the
articles, and towels, to wipe them. If every thing, after being used, is
cleansed from oil, and then kept neatly, it will not be so unpleasant a
task, as it usually is, to take care of lamps.

Wash the shade of an astral lamp, once a week, and the glass chimney
oftener. Take the lamp to pieces, and cleanse it, once a month. Keep dry
fingers, in trimming lamps. To raise the wick of an astral lamp, turn it
to the right; to lower it, turn it to the left. Trim it, after it has
been once used; and, in lighting it, raise it to the proper height, as
soon as may be, or it will either smoke, or form a crust. Renew the
wick, when only an inch and a half long. Close-woven wicks are better
than those which are loose. Dipping wicks in vinegar, makes them burn
clearer than they otherwise would. Plain shades do not injure the eyes,
like cut ones; and prints and pictures appear better by them, than by
the others. Lamps should be lighted with a strip of folded or rolled
paper, kept on the mantelpiece. Weak eyes should always be shaded from
the lights. Small screens, made for the purpose, should be kept at hand.
A person with weak eyes, can use them, safely, much longer, when they
are shaded from the glare of the light, than if they are not so. Fill
the entry-lamp, every day, and cleanse and fill night-lanterns, twice a
week, if used often. Provide small, one-wicked lamps, to carry about;
and broad-bottomed lamps, for the kitchen, as these are not easily

A good night-lamp is made, with a small one-wicked lamp and a roll of
tin to set over it. Have some holes made in the bottom of this cover,
and it can then be used to heat articles. Very cheap floating tapers,
can be bought, to burn in a teacup of oil through the night.

Wickyarn, drawn repeatedly through melted wax, till stiff and smooth,
makes a good taper, for use in sealing letters. It can be twined in
fanciful forms, and kept on the writing-table.

_To make Candles._

The nicest candles, are run in moulds. For this purpose, melt together
one quarter of a pound of white wax, one quarter of an ounce of camphor,
two ounces of alum, and ten ounces of suet or mutton tallow. Soak the
wicks, in lime-water and saltpetre, and, when dry, fix them in the
moulds, and pour in the melted tallow. Let them remain one night, to
cool, then warm them, a little, to loosen them, draw them out, and, when
hard, put them in a box, in a dry and cool place.

To make dipped candles, cut the wicks of the right length, double them
over rods, and twist them. They should first be dipped in lime-water, or
vinegar, and dried. Melt the tallow in a large kettle, filling it to
the top with hot water, when the tallow is melted. Put in wax, and
powdered alum, to harden them. Keep the tallow hot, over a portable
furnace, and fill up the kettle, with hot water, as fast as the tallow
is used up. Lay two long strips of narrow board, on which to hang the
rods; and set flat pans under, on the floor, to catch the grease. Take
several rods at once, and wet the wicks in the tallow; and, when cool,
straighten and smooth them. Then dip them, as fast as they cool, until
they become of the proper size. Plunge them obliquely, and not
perpendicularly; and when the bottoms are too large, hold them in the
hot grease, till a part melts off. Let them remain one night, to cool;
then cut off the bottoms, and keep them in a dry, cool place. Cheap
lights are made, by dipping rushes in tallow.



There is nothing, which tends more effectually to secure good washing,
than a full supply of all conveniences; and among these, none is more
important, than an abundance of warm and cold water: but, if this be
obtained, and heated, at a great expense of time and labor, it will be
used in stinted measure. The accommodations described on page 275, (Fig.
34,) are very convenient in this respect.

_Articles to be provided for Washing._

A plenty of soft water is a very important item. When this cannot be
had, ley or soda can be put in hard water, to soften it; care being used
not to put in so much, as to injure the hands and clothes. Two
wash-forms are needed; one for the two tubs in which to put the suds,
and the other for blueing and starching-tubs. Four tubs, of different
sizes, are necessary; also, a large _wooden_ dipper, (as metal is apt
to rust;) two or three pails; a grooved wash-board; a clothes-line,
(sea-grass, or horse-hair is best;) a wash-stick to move clothes, when
boiling, and a wooden fork to take them out. Soap-dishes, made to hook
on the tubs, save soap and time. Provide, also, a clothes-bag, in which
to boil clothes; an indigo-bag, of double flannel; a starch-strainer, of
coarse linen; a bottle of ox-gall for calicoes; a supply of starch,
neither sour nor musty; several dozens of clothes-pins, which are cleft
sticks, used to fasten clothes on the line; a bottle of dissolved gum
Arabic; two clothes-baskets; and a brass or copper kettle, for boiling
clothes, as iron is apt to rust. A closet, for keeping all these things,
is a great convenience. It may be made six feet high, three feet deep,
and four feet wide. The tubs and pails can be set on the bottom of this,
on their sides, one within another. Four feet from the bottom, have a
shelf placed, on which to put the basket of clothes-pins, the line,
soap-dishes, dipper, and clothes-fork. Above this, have another shelf,
for the bottles, boxes, &c. The shelves should reach out only half way
from the back, and nails should be put at the sides, for hanging the
wash-stick, clothes-bag, starch-bag, and indigo-bag. The
ironing-conveniences might be kept in the same closet, by having the
lower shelf raised a little, and putting a deep drawer under it, to hold
the ironing-sheets, holders, &c. A lock and key should be put on the
closet. If the mistress of the family requests the washerwoman to notify
her, when she is through, and then ascertains if all these articles are
put in their places, it will prove useful. Tubs, pails, and all hooped
wooden ware, should be kept out of the sun, and in a cool place, or they
will fall to pieces.

_Common Mode of Washing._

Assort the clothes, and put them in soak, the night before. Never pour
hot water on them, as it sets the dirt. In assorting clothes, put the
flannels in one lot, the colored clothes in another, the coarse white
ones in a third, and the fine clothes in a fourth lot. Wash the fine
clothes in one tub of suds; and throw them, when wrung, into another.
Then wash them, in the second suds, turning them wrong side out. Put
them in the boiling-bag, and boil them in strong suds, for half an hour,
and not much more. Move them, while boiling, with the clothes-stick.
Take them out of the boiling-bag, and put them into a tub of water, and
rub the dirtiest places, again, if need be. Throw them into the
rinsing-water, and then wring them out, and put them into the
blueing-water. Put the articles to be stiffened, into a clothes-basket,
by themselves, and, just before hanging out, dip them in starch,
clapping it in, so as to have them equally stiff, in all parts. Hang
white clothes in the sun, and colored ones, (wrong side out,) in the
shade. Fasten them with clothes-pins. Then wash the coarser white
articles, in the same manner. Then wash the colored clothes. These must
not be soaked, nor have ley or soda put in the water, and they ought not
to lie wet long before hanging out, as it injures their colors.
Beef's-gall, one spoonful to two pailfuls of suds, improves calicoes.
Lastly, wash the flannels, in suds as hot as the hand can bear. Never
rub on soap, as this shrinks them in spots. Wring them out of the first
suds, and throw them into another tub of hot suds, turning them wrong
side out. Then throw them into hot blueing-water. Do not put blueing
into suds, as it makes specks in the flannel. Never leave flannels long
in water, nor put them in cold or lukewarm water. Before hanging them
out, shake and stretch them. Some housekeepers have a close closet, made
with slats across the top. On these slats, they put their flannels, when
ready to hang out, and then burn brimstone under them, for ten minutes.
It is but little trouble, and keeps the flannels as white as new. Wash
the colored flannels, and hose, after the white, adding more hot water.
Some persons dry woollen hose on stocking-boards, shaped like a foot and
leg, with strings to tie them on the line. This keeps them from
shrinking, and makes them look better than if ironed. It is also less
work, than to iron them properly.

Bedding should be washed in long days, and in hot weather. Pound
blankets in two different tubs or barrels of hot suds, first well mixing
the soap and water. Rinse in hot suds; and, after wringing, let two
persons shake them thoroughly, and then hang them out. If not dry, at
night, fold them, and hang them out the next morning. Bedquilts should
be pounded in warm suds; and, after rinsing, be wrung as dry as
possible. Bolsters and pillows can be pounded in hot suds, without
taking out the feathers, rinsing them in fair water. It is usually best,
however, for nice feathers, to take them out, wash them, and dry them on
a garret floor. Cotton comforters should have the cases taken off and
washed. Wash bedticks, after the feathers are removed, like other
things. Empty straw beds once a year.

The following cautions, in regard to calicoes, are useful. Never wash
them in very warm water; and change the water, when it appears dingy, or
the light parts will look dirty. Never rub on soap; but remove grease
with French chalk, starch, magnesia, or Wilmington clay. Make starch for
them, with coffee-water, to prevent any whitish appearance. Glue is good
for stiffening calicoes. When laid aside, not to be used, all stiffening
should be washed out, or they will often be injured. Never let calicoes
freeze, in drying. Some persons use bran-water, (four quarts of
wheat-bran to two pails of water,) and no soap, for calicoes; washing
and rinsing in the bran-water. Potato-water is equally good. Take eight
peeled and grated potatoes to one gallon of water.


A very great saving in labor is secured, by _soda-washing_. There have
been mistakes made in receipts, and in modes of doing it, which have
caused a prejudice against it; but if the soap be rightly made, and
rightly used, _it certainly saves one half the labor and time of
ordinary washing_.

_Receipt for Soda-Soap._

Take eight pounds of bar-soap, eight pounds of coarse soda, (the
sub-carbonate,) ten gallons of soft water, boiled two hours, stirring it
often. This is to be cooled, and set away for use. In washing, take a
pound of this soap, to the largest pail of water, and heat till it
boils. Having previously soaked the white clothes, in _warm_, not _hot_,
water, put them in this boiling mixture, and let them boil _one hour and
no more_. Take them out, draining them well, and put them in a tub, half
full of soft water. Turn them wrong side out; rub the soiled places,
till they look clean; then put them into blue rinsing-water, and wring
them out. They are then ready to hang out. Some persons use another
rinsing-water. The colored clothes and flannels must not be washed in
this way. The fine clothes may be first boiled in this water; it may
then be used for coarser clothes; and afterward, the brown towels, and
other articles of that nature, may be boiled in the same water. After
this, the water which remains, is still useful, for washing floors; and
then, the suds is a good manure to put around plants.

It is best to prepare, at once, the whole quantity of water to be used.
Take out about one third, and set it by; and every time a fresh supply
of clothes is put in, use a portion of this, to supply the waste of a
former boiling.

_Modes of Washing Various Articles._

_Brown Linens_, or _Muslins_, of tea, drab, or olive, colors, look best,
washed in hay-water. Put in hay enough, to color the water like new
brown linen. Wash them first in lukewarm, fair water, without soap,
(removing grease with French chalk,) then wash and rinse them in the

_Nankeens_ look best, washed in suds, with a teacup of ley added for
each pailful. Iron on the wrong side. Soak new nankeens in ley, for one
night, and it sets the color perfectly.

_Woollen Table-Covers_ and _Woollen Shawls_, may be washed thus: Remove
grease as before directed. If there be stains in the articles, take them
out with spirits of hartshorn. Wash the things in two portions of hot
suds, made of white soap. Do not wring them, but fold them and press the
water out, catching it in a tub, under a table. Shake, stretch, and dry,
neither by the sun nor a fire, and do not let them freeze, in drying.
Sprinkle them three hours before ironing, and fold and roll them tight.
Iron them heavily on the wrong side. _Woollen yarn_, should be washed in
very hot water, putting in a teacupful of ley, and no soap, to half a
pailful of water. Rinse till the water comes off clear.

_New Black Worsted and Woollen Hose_, should be soaked all night, and
washed in hot suds, with beef's-gall, a tablespoonful to half a pail of
water. Rinse till no color comes out. Iron on the wrong side.

_To Cleanse Gentlemen's Broadcloths._ The common mode, is, to shake, and
brush the articles, and rip out linings and pockets; then to wash them
in strong suds, adding a teacupful of ley, using white soap for light
cloth; rolling and then pressing, instead of wringing, them; when dry,
sprinkling them, and letting them lie all night; and ironing on the
wrong side, or with a thin dark cloth over the article, until
_perfectly_ dry. But a far better way, which the writer has repeatedly
tried, with unfailing success, is the following: Take one beef's-gall,
half a pound of salæratus, and four gallons of warm water. Lay the
article on a table, and scour it thoroughly, in every part, with a
clothes-brush, dipped in this mixture. The collar of a coat, and the
grease-spots, (previously marked by stitches of white thread,) must be
repeatedly brushed. Then, take the article, and rinse it up and down in
the mixture. Then, rinse it up and down in a tub of soft cold water.
Then, without wringing or pressing, hang it to drain and dry. Fasten a
coat up by the collar. When perfectly dry, it is sometimes the case,
with coats, that nothing more is needed. In other cases, it is necessary
to dampen the parts, which look wrinkled, with a sponge, and either pull
them smooth, with the fingers, or press them with an iron, having a
piece of bombazine, or thin woollen cloth, between the iron and the

_To manufacture Ley, Soap, Starch, and other Articles used in Washing._

_To make Ley._ Provide a large tub, made of pine or ash, and set it on a
form, so high, that a tub can stand under it. Make a hole, an inch in
diameter, near the bottom, on one side. Lay bricks, inside, about this
hole, and straw over them. To every seven bushels of ashes, add two
gallons of unslacked lime, and throw in the ashes and lime in alternate
layers. While putting in the ashes and lime, pour on boiling water,
using three or four pailfuls. After this, add a pailful of cold soft
water, once an hour, till all the ashes appear to be well soaked. Catch
the drippings, in a tub, and try its strength with an egg. If the egg
rise so as to show a circle as large as a ten cent piece, the strength
is right; if it rise higher, the ley must be weakened by water; if not
so high, the ashes are not good, and the whole process must be repeated,
putting in fresh ashes, and running the weak ley through the new ashes,
with some additional water. _Quick-ley_ is made by pouring one gallon of
boiling soft water on three quarts of ashes, and straining it. Oak ashes
are best.

_To make Soft-Soap._ Save all drippings and fat, melt them, and set them
away, in cakes. Some persons keep, for soap-grease, a half barrel, with
weak ley in it, and a cover over it. To make soft-soap, take the
proportion of one pailful of ley to three pounds of fat. Melt the fat,
and pour in the ley, by degrees. Boil it steadily, through the day, till
it is ropy. If not boiled enough, on cooling, it will turn to ley and
sediment. While boiling, there should always be a little oil on the
surface. If this does not appear, add more grease. If there is too much
grease, on cooling, it will rise, and can be skimmed off. Try it, by
cooling a small quantity. When it appears like gelly, on becoming cold,
it is done. It must then be put in a cool place and often stirred.

_To make cold Soft-Soap_, melt thirty pounds of grease, put it in a
barrel, add four pailfuls of strong ley, and stir it up thoroughly. Then
gradually add more ley, till the barrel is nearly full, and the soap
looks _about right_.

_To make Potash-Soap_, melt thirty-nine pounds of grease, and put it in
a barrel. Take twenty-nine pounds of light ash-colored potash, (the
_reddish_-colored will spoil the soap,) and pour hot water on it; then
pour it off into the grease, stirring it well. Continue thus, till all
the potash is melted. Add one pailful of cold water, stirring it a great
deal, every day, till the barrel be full, and then it is done. This is
the cheapest and best kind of soap. It is best to sell ashes and buy
potash. The soap is better, if it stand a year before it is used;
therefore make two barrels at once.

_To make Hard White Soap_, take fifteen pounds of lard, or suet; and,
when boiling, add, slowly, five gallons of ley, mixed with one gallon of
water. Cool a small portion; and, if no grease rise, it is done: if
grease do rise, add ley, and boil till no grease rises. Then add three
quarts of fine salt, and boil it; if this do not harden well, on
cooling, add more salt. Cool it, and if it is to be perfumed, melt it
next day, put in the perfume, and then run it in moulds, or cut it in
cakes. _Common Hard Soap_, is made in the same way, by using common fat.

_To manufacture Starch_, cleanse a peck of unground wheat, and soak it,
for several days, in soft water. When quite soft, remove the husks, with
the hand, and the soft parts will settle. Pour off the water, and
replace it, every day, with that which is fresh, stirring it well. When,
after stirring and settling, the water is clear, it is done. Then
strain off the water, and dry the starch, for several days, in the sun.
If the water be permitted to remain too long, it sours, and the starch
is poor. If the starch be not well dried, it grows musty.



_To prepare Starch._ Take four tablespoonfuls of starch; put in as much
water; and rub it, till all lumps are removed. Then, add half a cup of
cold water. Pour this into a quart of boiling water, and boil it for
half an hour, adding a piece of spermaceti, or a lump of salt, or sugar,
as large as a hazelnut. Strain it, and put in a very little blueing.
Thin it with hot water.

_Glue and Gum-Starch._ Put a piece of glue, four inches square, into
three quarts of water, boil it, and keep it in a bottle, corked up.
Dissolve four ounces of gum Arabic, in a quart of hot water, and set it
away, in a bottle, corked. Use the glue for calicoes, and the gum for
silks and muslins, both to be mixed with water, at discretion.

_Beef's-Gall._ Send a junk-bottle to the butcher, and have several
gall-bladders emptied into it. Keep it salted, and in a cool place. Some
persons perfume it; but fresh air removes the unpleasant smell which it
gives, when used for clothes.

_Directions for Starching Muslins and Laces._

Many ladies clap muslins, then dry them, and afterwards sprinkle them.
This saves time. Others clap them, till nearly dry, then fold and cover,
and then iron them. Iron wrought muslins on soft flannel, and on the
wrong side.

_To do up Laces, nicely_, sew a clean piece of muslin around a long
bottle, and roll the lace on it; pulling out the edge, and rolling it
so that the edge will turn in, and be covered, as you roll. Fill the
bottle with water, and then boil it, for an hour, in a suds made with
white soap. Rinse it in fair water, a little blued; dry it in the sun;
and, if any stiffening is wished, use thin starch, or gum Arabic. When
dry, fold and press it, between white papers, in a large book. It
improves the lace, to wet it with sweet-oil, after it is rolled on the
bottle, and before boiling in the suds. _Blond laces_ can be whitened,
by rolling them on a bottle, in this way, and then setting the bottle in
the sun, in a dish of cold suds made with white soap, wetting it
thoroughly, and changing the suds, every day. Do this, for a week or
more; then rinse, in fair water; dry it on the bottle, in the sun; and
stiffen it with white gum Arabic. Lay it away in loose folds. _Lace
veils_ can be whitened, by laying them in flat dishes, in suds made with
white soap; then rinsing, and stiffening them with gum Arabic,
stretching them, and pinning them on a sheet, to dry.


_Articles to be provided for Ironing._

A settee, or settle, made so that it can be used for an ironing-table,
is a great convenience. It may be made of pine, and of the following
dimensions: length, five feet and six inches; width of the seat, one
foot and nine inches; height of the seat, one foot and three inches;
height of the sides, (or arms of the seat,) two feet and four inches;
height of the back, five feet and three inches. The back should be made
with hinges, of the height of the sides or arms, so that it can be
turned down, and rest on them, and thus become an ironing-table. The
back is to be fastened up, behind, with long iron hooks and staples. The
seat should be made with two lids, opening into two boxes, or
partitions, in one of which, can be kept the ironing-sheets and holders,
and in the other, the other articles used in ironing. It can be stained
of a cherry-color; put on casters, so as to move easily; and be
provided with two cushions, stuffed with hay and covered with dark
woollen. It thus serves as a comfortable seat, for Winter, protecting
the back from cold.

Where a settee, of this description, is not provided, a large
ironing-board, made so as not to warp, should be kept, and used only for
this purpose, to be laid, when used, on a table. Provide, also, the
following articles: A woollen ironing-blanket, and a linen or cotton
sheet, to spread over it; a large fire, of charcoal and hard wood,
(unless furnaces or stoves are used;) a hearth, free from cinders and
ashes, a piece of sheet-iron, in front of the fire, on which to set the
irons, while heating; (this last saves many black spots from careless
ironers;) three or four holders, made of woollen, and covered with old
silk, as these do not easily take fire; two iron rings, or iron-stands,
on which to set the irons, and small pieces of board to put under them,
to prevent scorching the sheet; linen or cotton wipers; and a piece of
beeswax, to rub on the irons when they are smoked. There should be, at
least, three irons for each person ironing, and a small and large
clothes-frame, on which to air the fine and coarse clothes.

A bosom-board, on which to iron shirt-bosoms, should be made, one foot
and a half long, and nine inches wide, and covered with white flannel. A
skirt-board on which to iron frock-skirts, should be made, five feet
long, and two feet wide at one end, tapering to one foot and three
inches wide, at the other end. This should be covered with flannel; and
will save much trouble, in ironing nice dresses. The large end may be
put on the table, and the other, on the back of a chair. Both these
boards should have cotton covers, made to fit them; and these should be
changed and washed, when dirty. These boards are often useful, when
articles are to be ironed or pressed, in a chamber or parlor. Provide,
also, a press-board, for broadcloth, two feet long, and four inches wide
at one end, tapering to three inches wide, at the other.

A fluting-iron, called, also, a patent Italian iron, saves much labor,
in ironing ruffles neatly. A crimping-iron, will crimp ruffles
beautifully, with very little time or trouble. Care must be used, with
the latter, or it will cut the ruffles. A trial should be made, with old
muslins; and, when the iron is screwed in the right place, it must be so
kept, and not altered without leave from the housekeeper. If the lady of
the house will provide all these articles, see that the fires are
properly made, the ironing-sheets evenly put on and properly pinned, the
clothes-frames dusted, and all articles kept in their places, she will
do much towards securing good ironing.

_On Sprinkling, Folding, and Ironing._

Wipe the dust from the ironing-board, and lay it down, to receive the
clothes, which should be sprinkled with clear water, and laid in
separate piles, one of colored, one of common, and one of fine articles,
and one of flannels. Fold the fine things, and roll them in a towel, and
then fold the rest, turning them all right side outward. The colored
clothes should be laid separate from the rest, and ought not to lie long
damp, as it injures the colors. The sheets and table linen should be
shaken, stretched, and folded, by two persons. Iron lace and needlework
on the wrong side, and carry them away, as soon as dry. Iron calicoes
with irons which are not very hot, and generally on the right side, as
they thus keep clean for a longer time. In ironing a frock, first do the
waist, then the sleeves, then the skirt. Keep the skirt rolled, while
ironing the other parts, and set a chair, to hold the sleeves, while
ironing the skirt, unless a skirt-board be used. In ironing a shirt,
first do the back, then the sleeves, then the collar and bosom, and then
the front. Iron silk on the wrong side, when quite damp, with an iron
which is not very hot. Light colors are apt to change and fade. Iron
velvet, by turning up the face of the iron, and after dampening the
wrong side of the velvet, draw it over the face of the iron, holding it
straight, and not biased.



_To Whiten Articles, and Remove Stains from them._

Wet white clothes in suds, and lay them on the grass, in the sun. Lay
muslins in suds made with white soap, in a flat dish; set this in the
sun, changing the suds, every day. Whiten tow-cloth, or brown linen, by
keeping it in ley, through the night, laying it out in the sun, and
wetting it with fair water, as fast as it dries.

Scorched articles can often be whitened again, by laying them in the
sun, wet with suds. Where this does not answer, put a pound of white
soap in a gallon of milk, and boil the article in it. Another method,
is, to chop and extract the juice from two onions, and boil this with
half a pint of vinegar, an ounce of white soap, and two ounces of
fuller's earth. Spread this, when cool, on the scorched part, and, when
dry, wash it off, in fair water. _Mildew_ may be removed, by dipping the
article in sour buttermilk, laying it in the sun, and, after it is
white, rinsing it in fair water. Soap and chalk are also good; also,
soap and starch, adding half as much salt as there is starch, together
with the juice of a lemon. Stains in linen can often be removed, by
rubbing on soft soap, then putting on a starch paste, and drying in the
sun, renewing it several times. Wash off all the soap and starch, in
cold, fair water.

_Mixtures for Removing Stains and Grease._

_Stain-Mixture._ Half an ounce of oxalic acid, in a pint of soft water.
This can be kept in a corked bottle, and is infallible in removing
iron-rust, and ink-stains. It is very poisonous. The article must be
spread with this mixture over the steam of hot water, and wet several
times. This will also remove indelible ink. The article must be washed,
or the mixture will injure it.

_Another Stain-Mixture_ is made, by mixing one ounce of sal ammoniac,
one ounce of salt of tartar, and one pint of soft water.

_To remove Grease._ Mix four ounces of fuller's earth, half an ounce of
pearlash, and lemon-juice enough to make a stiff paste, which can be
dried in balls, and kept for use. Wet the greased spot with cold water,
rub it with the ball, dry it, and then rinse it with fair cold water.
This is for _white_ articles. For silks, and worsteds, use French chalk,
which can be procured of the apothecaries. That which is soft and white,
is best. Scrape it on the greased spot, and let it lie for a day and
night. Then renew it, till the spot disappears. Wilmington clay-balls,
are equally good. Ink-spots can often be removed from white clothes, by
rubbing on common tallow, leaving it for a day or two, and then washing,
as usual. Grease can be taken out of wall-paper, by making a paste of
potter's clay, water and ox-gall, and spreading it on the paper. When
dry, renew it, till the spot disappears.

Stains on floors, from _soot_, or _stove-pipes_, can be removed, by
washing the spot in sulphuric acid and water. Stains, in colored silk
dresses, can often be removed, by pure water. Those made by acids, tea,
wine, and fruits, can often be removed, by spirits of hartshorn, diluted
with an equal quantity of water. Sometimes, it must be repeated, several

_Tar_, _Pitch_, and _Turpentine_, can be removed, by putting the spot in
sweet-oil, or by spreading tallow on it, and letting it remain for
twenty-four hours. Then, if the article be linen or cotton, wash it, as
usual; if it be silk or worsted, rub it with ether, or spirits of wine.

_Lamp-Oil_ can be removed, from floors, carpets, and other articles, by
spreading upon the stain a paste, made of fuller's earth or potter's
clay, and renewing it, when dry, till the stain is removed. If gall be
put into the paste, it will preserve the colors from injury. When the
stain has been removed, carefully brush off the paste, with a soft

_Oil-Paint_ can be removed, by rubbing it with _very pure_ spirits of
turpentine. The impure spirit leaves a grease-spot. _Wax_ can be
removed, by scraping it off, and then holding a red-hot poker near the
spot. _Spermaceti_ may be removed by scraping it off, then putting a
paper over the spot, and applying a warm iron. If this does not answer,
rub on spirits of wine.

_Ink-Stains_, in carpets and woollen table-covers, can be removed, by
washing the spot in a liquid, composed of one teaspoonful of oxalic acid
dissolved in a teacupful of warm (not hot) water, and then rinsing in
cold water.

_Stains on Varnished Articles_, which are caused by cups of hot water,
can be removed, by rubbing them with lamp-oil, and then with alcohol.
Ink-stains can be taken out of mahogany, by one teaspoonful of oil of
vitriol mixed with one tablespoonful of water, or by oxalic acid and
water. These must be brushed over quickly, and then washed off with

_Modes of Cleansing Various Articles._

_Silk Handkerchiefs_ and _Ribands_ can be cleansed, by using French
chalk to take out the grease, and then sponging them, on both sides,
with lukewarm fair water. Stiffen them with gum Arabic, and press them
between white paper, with an iron not very hot. A tablespoonful of
spirits of wine to three quarts of water, improves it.

_Silk Hose_, or _Silk Gloves_, should be washed in warm suds made with
white soap, and rinsed in cold water; they should then be stretched and
rubbed, with a hard-rolled flannel, till they are quite dry. Ironing
them, very much injures their looks. _Washleather_ articles should have
the grease removed from them, by French chalk, or magnesia; they should
then be washed in warm suds, and rinsed in cold water. _White Kid
Gloves_ should have the grease removed from them, as above directed.
They should then be brushed, with a soft brush, and a mixture of
fuller's earth and magnesia. In an hour after, rub them with flannel,
dipped in bran and powdered whiting. _Colored or Hoskin's gloves_ can be
cleansed, very nicely, by _pure_ spirits of turpentine, put on with a
woollen cloth, and rubbed from wrist to fingers. Hang them for several
days in the air, and all the unpleasant smell will be removed.
_Gentlemen's white gloves_ should be washed with a sponge, in
white-soapsuds; then wiped, and dried on the hands. _Swan's-down
tippets, and capes_, should be washed in white-soapsuds, squeezing, and
not rubbing them; then rinse them in two waters, and shake and stretch
them while drying. _Ostrich feathers_ can also be thus washed. Stiffen
them, with starch, wet in cold water and not boiled. Shake them in the
air, till nearly dry, then hold them before the fire, and curl them with
dull scissors, giving each fibre a twitch, turning it inward, and
holding it so for a moment.

_Straw and Leghorn Hats_, can be cleansed, by simply washing them in
white-soapsuds. Remove grease, by French chalk, and stains, by diluted
oxalic acid, or cream of tartar. The oxalic acid is best, but must be
instantly washed off. _To whiten them_, drive nails in a barrel, near
its bottom, so that cords can be stretched across. On these cords, tie
the bonnet, wet with suds, (having first removed the grease, stains, and
dirt.) Then invert the barrel, over a dish of coals, on which roll
brimstone is slowly burning. Put a chip under one side of the barrel, to
admit the air. Continue this, till the bonnet is white; then hang it in
the air, (when the weather is not damp,) till the smell is removed. Then
stiffen it with a solution of isinglass or gum Arabic, put on the
inside, with a sponge. Press the crown, on a block, and the rest on a
board, on the right side, putting muslin between the iron and straw, and
pressing hard. Be careful not to make it too stiff. First, stiffen a
small piece, for trial.


_Precautions and Preparations._

All the articles must be entirely free from grease or oil, and also, in
most cases, from soapsuds. Make light dyes in brass, and dark ones in
iron, vessels. Always wet the articles, in fair water, before dyeing.
Always carefully strain the dye. If the color be too light, dry and then
dip the article again. Stir the article well in the dye, lifting it up
often. Remove any previous color, by boiling in suds, or, what is
better, in the soda mixture used for washing.

_Pink Dye._ Buy a saucer of carmine, at an apothecary's. With it, you
will find directions for its use. This is cheap, easy to use, and
beautiful. _Balm blossoms_ and _Bergamot blossoms_, with a little cream
of tartar in the water, make a pretty pink.

_Red Dye._ Take half a pound of wheat bran, three ounces of powdered
alum, and two gallons of soft water. Boil these in a brass vessel, and
add an ounce of cream of tartar, and an ounce of cochineal, tied up
together in a bag. Boil the mixture for fifteen minutes, then strain it,
and dip the articles. Brazil wood, set with alum, makes another red dye.

_Yellow Dye._ Fustic, turmeric powder, saffron, barberry-bush,
peach-leaves, or marigold flowers, make a yellow dye. Set the dye with
alum, putting a piece the size of a large hazelnut to each quart of

_Light Blue Dye_, for silks and woollens, is made with the 'blue
composition,' to be procured of the hat-makers; fifteen drops to a quart
of water. Articles dipped in this, must be thoroughly rinsed. For a
_dark blue_, boil four ounces of copperas in two gallons of water. Dip
the articles in this, and then in a strong decoction of logwood, boiled
and strained. Then wash them thoroughly in soapsuds.

_Green Dye._ First color the article yellow; and then, if it be silk or
woollen, dip it in 'blue composition.' Instead of ironing, rub it with
flannel, while drying.

_Salmon Color_ is made by boiling arnotto or anotta in soapsuds.

_Buff Color_ is made by putting one teacupful of potash, tied in a bag,
in two gallons of hot (not boiling) water, and adding an ounce of
arnotto, also in a bag, keeping it in for half an hour. First, wet the
article in strong potash-water. Dry and then rinse in soapsuds. Birch
bark and alum also make a buff. Black alder, set with ley, makes an
orange color.

_Dove and Slate Colors_, of all shades, are made by boiling, in an iron
vessel, a teacupful of black tea, with a teaspoonful of copperas. Dilute
this, till you get the shade wanted. Purple sugar-paper, boiled, and set
with alum, makes a similar color.

_Brown Dye._ Boil half a pound of camwood (in a bag) in two gallons of
water, for fifteen minutes. Wet the articles, and boil them for a few
minutes in the dye. White-walnut bark, the bark of sour sumach, or of
white maple, set with alum, make a brown color.

_Black Dye._ Let one pound of chopped logwood remain all night in one
gallon of vinegar. Then boil them, and put in a piece of copperas, as
large as a hen's egg. Wet the articles in warm water, and put them in
the dye, boiling and stirring them for fifteen minutes. Dry them, then
wet them in warm water, and dip them again. Repeat the process, till the
articles are black enough. Wash them in suds, and rinse them till the
water comes off clear. Iron nails, boiled in vinegar, make a black dye,
which is good for restoring rusty black silks.

_Olive Color._ Boil fustic and yellow-oak bark together. The more
fustic, the brighter the olive; the more oak bark, the darker the shade.
Set the light shade with a few drops of oil of vitriol, and the dark
shade with copperas.



In selecting the furniture of parlors, some reference should be had to
correspondence of shades and colors. Curtains should be darker than the
walls; and, if the walls and carpets be light, the chairs should be
dark, and _vice versa_. Pictures always look best on light walls.

In selecting carpets, for rooms much used, it is poor economy to buy
cheap ones. _Ingrain_ carpets, of close texture, and the _three-ply_
carpets, are best for common use. _Brussels_ carpets do not wear so long
as the three-ply ones, because they cannot be turned. _Wilton_ carpets
wear badly, and _Venetians_ are good only for halls and stairs.

In selecting colors, avoid those in which there are any black threads;
as they are always rotten. The most tasteful carpets, are those, which
are made of various shades of the same color, or of all shades of only
two colors; such as brown and yellow, or blue and buff, or salmon and
green, or all shades of green, or of brown. All very dark shades should
be brown or green, but not black.

In laying down carpets, it is a bad practice to put straw under them, as
this makes them wear out in spots. Straw matting, laid under carpets,
makes them last much longer, as it is smooth and even, and the dust
sifts through it. In buying carpets, always get a few yards over, to
allow for waste in matching figures.

In cutting carpets, make them three or four inches shorter than the
room, to allow for stretching. Begin to cut _in the middle_ of a figure,
and it will usually match better. Many carpets match in two different
ways, and care must be taken to get the right one. Sew a carpet on the
wrong side, with double waxed thread, and with the _ball-stitch_. This
is done by taking a stitch on the breadth next you, pointing the needle
towards you; and then taking a stitch on the other breadth, pointing the
needle from you. Draw the thread tightly, but not so as to pucker. In
fitting a breadth to the hearth, cut slits in the right place, and turn
the piece under. Bind _the whole_ of the carpet, with carpet-binding,
nail it with tacks, having bits of leather under the heads. To stretch
the carpet, use a carpet-fork, which is a long stick, ending with
notched tin, like saw-teeth. This is put in the edge of the carpet, and
pushed by one person, while the nail is driven by another. Cover blocks,
or bricks, with carpeting, like that of the room, and put them behind
tables, doors, sofas, &c., to preserve the walls from injury, by
knocking, or by the dusting-cloth.

Cheap footstools, made of a square plank, covered with tow-cloth,
stuffed, and then covered with carpeting, with worsted handles, look
very well. Sweep carpets as seldom as possible, as it wears them out. To
shake them often, is good economy. In cleaning carpets, use damp tea
leaves, or wet Indian meal, throwing it about, and rubbing it over with
the broom. The latter, is very good for cleansing carpets made dingy by
coal-dust. In brushing carpets in ordinary use, it will be found very
convenient to use a large flat dust-pan, with a perpendicular handle a
yard high, put on so that the pan will stand alone. This can be carried
about, and used without stooping, brushing dust into it with a common
broom. The pan must be very large, or it will be upset.

When carpets are taken up, they should be hung on a line, or laid on
long grass, and whipped, first on one side, and then on the other, with
pliant whips. If laid aside, they should be sewed up tight, in linen,
having snuff or tobacco put along all the crevices where moths could
enter. Shaking pepper, from a pepper-box, round the edge of the floor,
under a carpet, prevents the access of moths.

Carpets can be best washed on the floor, thus: First shake them; and
then, after cleaning the floor, stretch and nail them upon it. Then
scrub them in cold soapsuds, having half a teacupful of ox-gall to a
bucket of water. Then wash off the suds, with a cloth, in fair water.
Set open the doors and windows, for two days or more. Imperial Brussels,
Venetian, ingrain, and three-ply, carpets, can be washed thus; but
Wilton, and other plush-carpets, cannot. Before washing them, take out
grease, with a paste, made of potter's clay, ox-gall, and water.

Straw matting is best for chambers and Summer parlors. The checked, of
two colors, is not so good to wear. The best, is the cheapest in the
end. When washed, it should be done with salt water, wiping it dry; but
frequent washing injures it. Bind matting with cotton binding. Sew
breadths together like carpeting. In joining the ends of pieces, ravel
out a part, and tie the threads together, turning under a little of each
piece, and then, laying the ends close, nail them down, with nails
having kid under their heads.

In hanging pictures, put them so that the lower part shall be opposite
the eye. Cleanse the glass of pictures with whiting, as water endangers
the pictures. Gilt frames can be much better preserved by putting on a
coat of copal varnish, which, with proper brushes, can be bought of
carriage or cabinet-makers. When dry, it can be washed with fair water.
Wash the brush in spirits of turpentine.

Curtains, ottomans, and sofas covered with worsted, can be cleansed, by
wheat-bran, rubbed on with flannel. Dust Venetian blinds with feather
brushes. Buy light-colored ones, as the green are going out of fashion.
Strips of linen or cotton, on rollers and pulleys, are much in use, to
shut out the sun from curtains and carpets. Paper curtains, pasted on
old cotton, are good for chambers. Put them on rollers, having cords
nailed to them, so that when the curtain falls, the cord will be wound
up. Then, by pulling the cord, the curtain will be rolled up.

Mahogany furniture should be made in the Spring, and stand some months
before it is used, or it will shrink and warp. Varnished furniture
should be rubbed only with silk, except occasionally, when a little
sweet-oil should be rubbed over, and wiped off carefully. For
unvarnished furniture, use beeswax, a little softened with sweet-oil;
rub it in with a hard brush, and polish with woollen and silk rags. Some
persons rub in linseed-oil; others mix beeswax with a little spirits of
turpentine and rosin, making it so that it can be put on with a sponge,
and wiped off with a soft rag. Others, keep in a bottle the following
mixture; two ounces of spirits of turpentine, four tablespoonfuls of
sweet-oil, and one quart of milk. This is applied with a sponge, and
wiped off with a linen rag.

Hearths and jambs, of brick, look best painted over with blacklead,
mixed with soft-soap. Wash the bricks which are nearest the fire with
redding and milk, using a painter's brush. A sheet of zinc, covering the
whole hearth, is cheap, saves work, and looks very well. A tinman can
fit it properly.

Stone hearths should be rubbed with a paste of powdered stone, (to be
procured of the stonecutters,) and then brushed with a stiff brush.
Kitchen-hearths, of stone, are improved by rubbing in lamp-oil.

Stains can be removed from marble, by oxalic acid and water, or oil of
vitriol and water, left on fifteen minutes, and then rubbed dry. Gray
marble is improved by linseed-oil. Grease can be taken from marble, by
ox-gall and potter's clay wet with soapsuds, (a gill of each.) It is
better to add, also, a gill of spirits of turpentine. It improves the
looks of marble, to cover it with this mixture, leaving it two days, and
then rubbing it off.

Unless a parlor is in constant use, it is best to sweep it only once a
week, and at other times use a whisk-broom and dust-pan. When a parlor
with handsome furniture is to be swept, cover the sofas, centre table,
piano, books, and mantelpiece, with old cottons, kept for the purpose.
Remove the rugs, and shake them, and clean the jambs, hearth, and
fire-furniture. Then sweep the room, moving every article. Dust the
furniture, with a dust-brush and a piece of old silk. A painter's brush
should be kept, to remove dust from ledges and crevices. The dust-cloths
should be often shaken and washed, or else they will soil the walls and
furniture when they are used. Dust ornaments, and fine books, with
feather brushes, kept for the purpose.



An eating-room should have in it a large closet, with drawers and
shelves, in which should be kept all the articles used at meals. This,
if possible, should communicate with the kitchen, by a sliding window,
or by a door, and have in it a window, and also a small sink, made of
marble or lined with zinc, which will be a great convenience for washing
nice articles. If there be a dumb-waiter, it is best to have it
connected with such a closet. It may be so contrived, that, when it is
down, it shall form part of the closet floor.

A table-rug, or crumb-cloth, is useful to save carpets from injury.
Bocking, or baize, is best. Always spread the same side up, or the
carpet will be soiled by the rug. Table-mats are needful, to prevent
injury to the table from the warm dishes. Teacup-mats, or small plates,
are useful to save the table-cloths from dripping tea or coffee.
Butter-knives, for the butter-plate, and salt-spoons, for salt-dishes,
are designed to prevent those disgusting marks which are made, when
persons use their own knives, to take salt or butter. A sugar-spoon
should be kept in or by the sugar-dish, for the same purpose.
Table-napkins, of diaper, are often laid by each person's plate, for
use during the meal, to save the tablecloth and pocket-handkerchief. To
preserve the same napkin for the same person, each member of the family
has a given number, and the napkins are numbered to correspond, or else
are slipped into ivory rings, which are numbered. A stranger has a clean
one, at each meal. Tablecloths should be well starched, and ironed on
the right side, and always, when taken off, folded in the ironed
creases. _Doilies_ are colored napkins, which, when fruit is offered,
should always be furnished, to prevent a person from staining a nice
handkerchief, or permitting the fruit-juice to dry on the fingers.

Casters and salt-stands should be put in order, every morning, when
washing the breakfast things. Always, if possible, provide _fine_ and
_dry_ table-salt, as many persons are much disgusted with that which is
dark, damp, and coarse. Be careful to keep salad-oil closely corked, or
it will grow rancid. Never leave the salt-spoons in the salt, nor the
mustard-spoon in the mustard, as they are thereby injured. Wipe them,
immediately after the meal.

For table-furniture, French china is deemed the nicest, but it is liable
to the objection of having plates, so made, that salt, butter, and
similar articles, will not lodge on the edge, but slip into the centre.
Select knives and forks, which have weights in the handles, so that,
when laid down, they will not touch the table. Those with rivetted
handles last longer than any others. Horn handles (except buckhorn) are
very poor. The best are cheapest in the end. Knives should be sharpened
once a month, unless they are kept sharp by the mode of scouring.

_On Setting Tables._

Neat housekeepers observe the manner in which a table is set more than
any thing else; and to a person of good taste, few things are more
annoying, than to see the table placed askew; the tablecloth soiled,
rumpled, and put on awry; the plates, knives, and dishes thrown about,
without any order; the pitchers soiled on the outside, and sometimes
within; the tumblers dim; the caster out of order; the butter pitched on
the plate, without any symmetry; the salt coarse, damp, and dark; the
bread cut in a mixture of junks and slices; the dishes of food set on at
random, and without mats; the knives dark or rusty, and their handles
greasy; the tea-furniture all out of order, and every thing in similar
style. And yet, many of these negligences will be met with, at the
tables of persons who call themselves well bred, and who have wealth
enough to make much outside show. One reason for this, is, the great
difficulty of finding domestics, who will attend to these things in a
proper manner, and who, after they have been repeatedly instructed, will
not neglect nor forget what has been said to them. The writer has known
cases, where much has been gained by placing the following rules in
plain sight, in the place where the articles for setting tables are

_Rules for setting a Table._

1. Lay the rug square with the room, and also smooth and even; then set
the table also square with the room, and see that the _legs_ are in the
right position to support the leaves.

2. Lay the tablecloth square with the table, _right side up_, smooth,
and even.

3. Put on the teatray (for breakfast or tea) square with the table; set
the cups and saucers at the front side of the teatray, and the sugar,
slop-bowls, and cream-cup, at the back side. Lay the sugar-spoon or
tongs on the sugar-bowl.

4. Lay the plates around the table, at equal intervals, and the knives
and forks at regular distances, each in the same particular manner, with
a cup-mat, or cup-plate, to each, and a napkin at the right side of each

5. If meat be used, set the caster and salt-cellars in the centre of the
table; then lay mats for the dishes, and place the carving-knife and
fork and steel by the master of the house. Set the butter on two plates,
one on either side, with a butter-knife by each.

6. Set the tea or coffee-pot on a mat, at the right hand of the teatray,
(if there be not room upon it.) Then place the chairs around the table,
and call the family.

_For Dinner._

1. Place the rug, table, tablecloth, plates, knives and forks, and
napkins, as before directed, with a tumbler by each plate. In cold
weather, set the plates where they will be warmed.

2. Put the caster in the centre, and the salt-stands at two oblique
corners, of the table, the latter between two large spoons crossed. If
more spoons be needed, lay them on each side of the caster, crossed. Set
the pitcher on a mat, either at a side-table, or, when there is no
waiter, on the dining-table. Water looks best in glass decanters.

3. Set the bread on the table, when there is no waiter. Some take a
fork, and lay a piece on the napkin or tumbler by each plate. Others
keep it in a tray, covered with a white napkin to keep off flies. Bread
for dinner is often cut in small junks, and not in slices.

4. Set the principal dish before the master of the house, and the other
dishes in a regular manner. Put the carving-knife, fork, and steel, by
the principal dish, and also a knife-rest, if one be used.

5. Put a small knife and fork by the pickles, and also by any other
dishes which need them. Then place the chairs.

_On Waiting at Table._

A domestic, who waits on the table, should be required to keep the hair
and hands in neat order, and have on a clean apron. A small teatray
should be used to carry cups and plates. The waiter should announce the
meal (when ready) to the mistress of the family, then stand by the
eating-room door, till all are in, then close the door, and step to the
left side of the lady of the house. When all are seated, the waiter
should remove the covers, taking care first to invert them, so as not to
drop the steam on the tablecloth or guests. In presenting articles, go
to the left side of the person. In pouring water never entirely fill the
tumbler. The waiter should notice when bread or water is wanting, and
hand it without being called. When plates are changed, be careful not to
drop knives or forks. Brush off crumbs, with a crumb-brush, into a small

When there is no domestic waiter, a light table should be set at the
left side of the mistress of the house, on which the bread, water, and
other articles not in immediate use, can be placed.

_On Carving and Helping at Table._

It is considered an accomplishment for a lady to know how to carve well,
at her own table. It is not proper to stand in carving. The
carving-knife should be sharp and thin. To carve fowls, (which should
always be laid with the breast uppermost,) place the fork in the breast,
and take off the wings and legs without turning the fowl; then cut out
the merry thought, cut slices from the breast, take out the collar bone,
cut off the side pieces, and then cut the carcass in two. Divide the
joints in the leg of a turkey.

In helping the guests, when no choice is expressed, give a piece of both
the white and dark meat, with some of the stuffing. Inquire whether the
guest will be helped to each kind of vegetable, and put the gravy on the
plate, and not on any article of food.

In carving a sirloin, cut thin slices from the side next to you, (it
must be put on the dish with the tenderloin underneath;) then turn it,
and cut from the tenderloin Help the guest to both kinds.

In carving a leg of mutton, or a ham, begin by cutting across the
middle, to the bone. Cut a tongue across, and not lengthwise, and help
from the middle part.

Carve a forequarter of lamb, by separating the shoulder from the ribs,
and then dividing the ribs. To carve a loin of veal, begin at the
smaller end and separate the ribs. Help each one to a piece of the
kidney and its fat. Carve pork and mutton in the same way.

To carve a fillet of veal, begin at the top, and help to the stuffing
with each slice. In a breast of veal, separate the breast and brisket,
and then cut them up, asking which part is preferred. In carving a pig,
it is customary to divide it, and take off the head, before it comes to
the table; as, to many persons, the head is very revolting. Cut off the
limbs, and divide the ribs. In carving venison, make a deep incision
down to the bone, to let out the juices; then turn the broad end of the
haunch towards you, cutting deep, in thin slices. For a saddle of
venison, cut from the tail towards the other end, on each side, in thin
slices. Warm plates are very necessary, with venison and mutton, and in
Winter, are desirable for all meats.



Every mistress of a family should see, not only that all sleeping-rooms
in her house _can be_ well ventilated at night, but that they actually
are so. Where there is no open fireplace to admit the pure air from the
exterior, a door should be left open into an entry, or room where fresh
air is admitted; or else a small opening should be made in a window,
taking care not to allow a draught of air to cross the bed. The debility
of childhood, the lassitude of domestics, and the ill-health of
families, are often caused by neglecting to provide a supply of pure
air. Straw matting is best for a chamber carpet, and strips of woollen
carpeting may be laid by the side of the bed. Where chambers have no
closets, a _wardrobe_ is indispensable. This is a moveable closet, with
doors, divided, by a perpendicular partition, into two apartments. In
one division, rows of hooks are placed, on which to hang dresses. The
other division is fitted up with shelves, for other uses. Some are made
with drawers at the bottom for shoes, and such like articles. A low
square box, set on casters, with a cushion on the top, and a drawer on
one side to put shoes in, is a great convenience in dressing the feet.
An old champaigne basket, fitted up with a cushion on the lid, and a
valance fastened to it to cover the sides, can be used for the same

A comfortable couch, for chambers and sitting-rooms, can be made by a
common carpenter, at a small expense. Have a frame made (like the
annexed engraving, Fig. 38,) of common stuff, six feet long,
twenty-eight inches wide, and twelve inches high. It must be made thus
low, because the casters and cushions will raise it several inches. Have
the sloping side-piece, _a_, and head-piece, _b_, sawed out of a board;
nail brown linen on them, and stuff them with soft hay or hair. Let
these be screwed to the frame, and covered with furniture patch. Then
let slats be nailed across the bottom, as at _c_, _c_, four inches
apart. This will cost two or three dollars. Then make a thick cushion,
of hay or straw, with side strips, like a mattress, and lay this for the
under-cushion. To put over this, make a thinner cushion, of hair, cover
it with furniture-calico, and fasten to it a valance reaching to the
floor. Then make two square pillows, and cover them with calico, like
the rest. Both the cushions should be stitched through like mattresses.

[Illustration: Fig. 38.]

The writer has seen a couch of this kind, in a common parlor, which
cost less than eight dollars, was much admired, and was a constant
comfort to the feeble mother, as well as many other members of the

Another convenience, for a room where sewing is done in Summer, is a
fancy-jar, set in one corner, to receive clippings, and any other
rubbish. It can be covered with prints, or paintings, and varnished; and
then looks very prettily.

The trunks in a chamber can be improved in looks and comfort, by making
cushions of the same size and shape, stuffed with hay and covered with
chintz, with a frill reaching nearly to the floor.

Every bedchamber should have a washstand, bowl, pitcher, and tumbler,
with a washbucket under the stand, to receive slops. A light screen,
made like a clothes-frame, and covered with paper or chintz, should be
furnished for bedrooms occupied by two persons, so that ablutions can be
performed in privacy. It can be ornamented, so as to look well anywhere.
A little frame, or towel-horse, by the washstand, on which to dry
towels, is a convenience. A washstand should be furnished with a sponge
or washcloth, and a small towel, for wiping the basin after using it.
This should be hung on the washstand or towel-horse, for constant use. A
soap-dish, and a dish for toothbrushes, are neat and convenient, and
each person should be furnished with two towels; one for the feet, and
one for other purposes.

It is in good taste to have the curtains, bedquilt, valance, and
window-curtains, of similar materials. In making featherbeds,
side-pieces should be put in, like those of mattresses, and the bed
should be well filled, so that a person will not be buried in a hollow,
which is not healthful, save in extremely cold weather. Featherbeds
should never be used, except in cold weather. At other times, a thin
mattress of hair, cotton and moss, or straw, should be put over them. A
simple strip of broad straw matting, spread over a featherbed, answers
the same purpose. Nothing is more debilitating, than, in warm weather,
to sleep with a featherbed pressing round the greater part of the body.
Pillows stuffed with papers an inch square, are good for Summer,
especially for young children, whose heads should be kept cool. The
cheapest and best covering of a bed, for Winter, is a _cotton
comforter_, made to contain three or four pounds of cotton, laid in
batts or sheets, between covers tacked together at regular intervals.
They should be three yards square, and less cotton should be put at the
sides that are tucked in. It is better to have two thin comforters, to
each bed, than one thick one; as then the covering can be regulated
according to the weather.

Few domestics will make a bed properly, without much attention from the
mistress of the family. The following directions should be given to
those who do this work.

Open the windows, and lay off the bed-covering, on two chairs, at the
foot of the bed. After the bed is well aired, shake the feathers, from
each corner to the middle; then take up the middle, and shake it well,
and turn the bed over. Then push the feathers in place, making the head
higher than the foot, and the sides even, and as high as the middle
part. Then put on the bolster and the under sheet, so that the wrong
side of the sheet shall go next the bed, and the _marking_ come at the
head, tucking in all around. Then put on the pillows, even, so that the
open ends shall come to the sides of the bed, and then spread on the
upper sheet, so that the wrong side shall be next the blankets, and the
marked end at the head. This arrangement of sheets is to prevent the
part where the feet lie from being reversed, so as to come to the face,
and also to prevent the parts soiled by the body from coming to the
bedtick and blankets. Then put on the other covering, except the outer
one, tucking in all around, and then turn over the upper sheet, at the
head, so as to show a part of the pillows. When the pillow-cases are
clean and smooth, they look best outside of the cover, but not
otherwise. Then draw the hand along the side of the pillows, to make an
even indentation, and then smooth and shape the whole outside. A nice
housekeeper always notices the manner in which a bed is made; and in
some parts of the Country, it is rare to see this work properly

The writer would here urge every mistress of a family, who keeps more
than one domestic, to provide them with single beds, that they may not
be obliged to sleep with all the changing domestics, who come and go so
often. Where the room is too small for two beds, a narrow trucklebed
under another, will answer. Domestics should be furnished with washing
conveniences in their chambers, and be encouraged to keep their persons
and rooms neat and in order.

_On Packing and Storing Articles._

Fold a gentleman's coat, thus:--Lay it on a table or bed, the inside
downward, and unroll the collar. Double each sleeve once, making the
crease at the elbow, and laying them so as to make the fewest wrinkles,
and parallel with the skirts. Turn the fronts over the back and sleeves,
and then turn up the skirts, making all as smooth as possible.

Fold a shirt, thus:--One that has a bosom-piece inserted, lay on a bed,
bosom downward. Fold each sleeve twice, and lay it parallel with the
sides of the shirt. Turn the two sides, with the sleeves, over the
middle part, and then turn up the bottom, with two folds. This makes the
collar and bosom lie, unpressed, on the outside.

Fold a frock thus:--Lay its front downward, so as to make the first
creases in folding come in the side breadths. To do this, find the
middle of the side breadths by first putting the middle of the front and
back breadths together. Next, fold over the side creases so as just to
meet the slit behind. Then fold the skirt again, so as to make the
backs lie together within and the fronts without. Then arrange the
waist and sleeves, and fold the skirt around them.

In packing trunks, for travelling, put all heavy articles at the bottom,
covered with paper, which should not be printed, as the ink rubs off.
Put coats and pantaloons into linen cases, made for the purpose, and
furnished with strings. Fill all crevices with small articles; as, if a
trunk is not full, nor tightly packed, its contents will be shaken
about, and get injured. A thin box, the exact size of the trunk, with a
lid, and covered with brown linen, is a great convenience, to set
inside, on the top of the trunk, to contain light articles which would
be injured by tight packing. Have straps, with buckles, fastened to the
inside, near the bottom, long enough to come up and buckle over this
box. By this means, when a trunk is not quite full, this box can be
strapped over so tight, as to keep the articles from rubbing.
Under-clothing packs closer, by being rolled tightly, instead of being

Bonnet-boxes, made of light wood, with a lock and key, are better than
the paper bandboxes so annoying to travellers. Carpet bags are very
useful, to carry the articles to be used on a journey. The best ones
have sides inserted, iron rims, and a lock and key. A large silk
travelling-bag, with a double linen lining, in which are stitched
receptacles for toothbrush, combs, and other small articles, is a very
convenient article for use when travelling.

A bonnet-cover, made of some thin material, like a large hood with a
cape, is useful to draw over the bonnet and neck, to keep off dust, sun,
and sparks from a steam engine. Green veils are very apt to stain
bonnets, when damp.

In packing household furniture, for moving, have each box numbered, and
then have a book, in which, as each box is packed, note down the number
of the box, and the order in which its contents are packed, as this will
save much labor and perplexity when unpacking. In packing china and
glass, wrap each article, separately, in paper, and put soft hay or
straw at bottom and all around each. Put the heaviest articles at the
bottom; and on the top of the box, write, "This side up."



If parents wish their daughters to grow up with good domestic habits,
they should have, as one means of securing this result, a neat and
cheerful kitchen. A kitchen should always, if possible, be entirely
above ground, and well lighted. It should have a large sink, with a
drain running under ground, so that all the premises may be kept sweet
and clean. If flowers and shrubs be cultivated, around the doors and
windows, and the yard near them be kept well turfed, it will add very
much to their agreeable appearance. The walls should often be cleaned
and whitewashed, to promote a neat look and pure air. The floor of a
kitchen should be painted, or, which is better, covered with an
oilcloth. To procure a kitchen oilcloth as cheaply as possible, buy
cheap tow cloth, and fit it to the size and shape of the kitchen. Then
have it stretched, and nailed to the south side of the barn, and, with a
brush, cover it with a coat of thin rye paste. When this is dry, put on
a coat of yellow paint, and let it dry for a fortnight. It is safest to
first try the paint, and see if it dries well, as some paint never will
dry. Then put on a second coat, and at the end of another fortnight, a
third coat. Then let it hang two months, and it will last, uninjured,
for many years. The longer the paint is left to dry, the better. If
varnished, it will last much longer.

A sink should be scalded out every day, and occasionally with hot ley.
On nails, over the sink, should be hung three good dish-cloths, hemmed,
and furnished with loops; one for dishes not greasy, one for greasy
dishes, and one for washing pots and kettles. These should be put in the
wash every week. The lady who insists upon this, will not be annoyed by
having her dishes washed with dark, musty, and greasy, rags, as is too
frequently the case.

Under the sink should be kept a slop-pail; and, on a shelf by it, a
soap-dish and two water-pails. A large boiler, of warm soft water,
should always be kept over the fire, well covered, and a hearth-broom
and bellows be hung near the fire. A clock is a very important article
in the kitchen, in order to secure regularity at meals.

_On Washing Dishes._

No item of domestic labor is so frequently done in a negligent manner,
by domestics, as this. A full supply of conveniences, will do much
toward a remedy of this evil. A swab, made of strips of linen, tied to a
stick, is useful to wash nice dishes, especially small, deep articles.
Two or three towels, and three dish-cloths, should be used. Two large
tin tubs, painted on the outside, should be provided; one for washing,
and one for rinsing; also, a large old waiter, on which to drain the
dishes. A soap-dish, with hard soap, and a fork, with which to use it, a
slop-pail, and two pails for water, should also be furnished. Then, if
there be danger of neglect, the following rules for washing dishes,
legibly written, may be hung up by the sink, and it will aid in
promoting the desired care and neatness.

_Rules for Washing Dishes._

1. Scrape the dishes, putting away any food which may remain on them,
and which it may be proper to save for future use. Put grease into the
grease-pot, and whatever else may be on the plates, into the slop-pail.
Save tea-leaves, for sweeping. Set all the dishes, when scraped, in
regular piles; the smallest at the top.

2. Put the nicest articles in the wash-dish, and wash them in hot suds,
with the swab or nicest dish-cloth. Wipe all metal articles, as soon as
they are washed. Put all the rest into the rinsing-dish, which should
be filled with hot water. When they are taken out, lay them to drain on
the waiter. Then rinse the dish-cloth, and hang it up, wipe the articles
washed, and put them in their places.

3. Pour in more hot water, wash the greasy dishes with the dish-cloth
made for them; rinse them, and set them to drain. Wipe them, and set
them away. Wash the knives and forks, _being careful that the handles
are never put in water_; wipe them, and then lay them in a knife-dish,
to be scoured.

4. Take a fresh supply of clean suds, in which, wash the milk-pans,
buckets, and tins. Then rinse and hang up this dish-cloth, and take the
other; with which, wash the roaster, gridiron, pots, and kettles. Then
wash and rinse the dish-cloth, and hang it up. Empty the slop-bucket and
scald it. Dry metal teapots and tins before the fire. Then put the
fireplace in order, and sweep and dust the kitchen.

Some persons keep a deep and narrow vessel, in which to wash knives with
a swab, so that a careless domestic _cannot_ lay them in the water while
washing them. This article can be carried into the eating-room, to
receive the knives and forks, when they are taken from the table.

_Kitchen Furniture._

_Crockery._ Brown earthen pans are said to be best, for milk and for
cooking. Tin pans are lighter, and more convenient, but are too cold for
many purposes. Tall earthen jars, with covers, are good to hold butter,
salt, lard, &c. Acids should never be put into the red earthen ware, as
there is a poisonous ingredient in the glazing, which the acid takes
off. Stone ware is better, and stronger, and safer, every way, than any
other kind.

_Iron Ware._ Many kitchens are very imperfectly supplied with the
requisite conveniences for cooking. When a person has sufficient means,
the following articles are all desirable. A nest of iron pots, of
different sizes, (they should be slowly heated, when new;) a long iron
fork, to take out articles from boiling water; an iron hook, with a
handle, to lift pots from the crane; a large and small gridiron, with
grooved bars, and a trench to catch the grease; a Dutch oven, called,
also, a bakepan; two skillets, of different sizes, and a spider, or flat
skillet, for frying; a griddle, a waffle-iron, tin and iron bake and
bread-pans; two ladles, of different sizes; a skimmer; iron skewers; a
toasting-iron; two teakettles, one small and one large one; two brass
kettles, of different sizes, for soap-boiling, &c. Iron kettles, lined
with porcelain, are better for preserves. The German are the best. Too
hot a fire will crack them, but with care in this respect, they will
last for many years.

Portable furnaces, of iron or clay, are very useful, in Summer, in
washing, ironing, and stewing, or making preserves. If used in the
house, a strong draught must be made, to prevent the deleterious effects
of the charcoal. A box and mill, for spice, pepper, and coffee, are
needful to those who use these articles. Strong knives and forks, a
sharp carving-knife, an iron cleaver and board, a fine saw, steelyards,
chopping-tray and knife, an apple-parer, steel for sharpening knives,
sugar-nippers, a dozen iron spoons, also a large iron one with a long
handle, six or eight flatirons, one of them very small, two iron-stands,
a ruffle-iron, a crimping-iron, are also desirable.

_Tin Ware._ Bread-pans, large and small pattypans, cake-pans, with a
centre tube to insure their baking well, pie-dishes, (of block-tin,) a
covered butter-kettle, covered kettles to hold berries, two sauce-pans,
a large oil-can, (with a cock,) a lamp-filler, a lantern, broad-bottomed
candlesticks for the kitchen, a candle-box, a funnel or tunnel, a
reflector, for baking warm cakes, an oven or tin-kitchen, an
apple-corer, an apple-roaster, an egg-boiler, two sugar-scoops, and
flour and meal-scoop, a set of mugs, three dippers, a pint, quart, and
gallon measure, a set of scales and weights, three or four pails,
painted on the outside, a slop-bucket, with a tight cover, painted on
the outside, a milk-strainer, a gravy-strainer, a colander, a
dredging-box, a pepper-box, a large and small grater, a box, in which to
keep cheese, also a large one for cake, and a still larger one for
bread, with tight covers. Bread, cake, and cheese, shut up in this way,
will not grow dry as in the open air.

_Wooden Ware._ A nest of tubs, a set of pails and bowls, a large and
small sieve, a beetle for mashing potatoes, a spad or stick for stirring
butter and sugar, a bread-board, for moulding bread and making
pie-crust, a coffee-stick, a clothes-stick, a mush-stick, a meat-beetle
to pound tough meat, an egg-beater, a ladle for working butter, a
bread-trough, (for a large family,) flour-buckets, with lids to hold
sifted flour and Indian meal, salt-boxes, sugar-boxes, starch and
indigo-boxes, spice-boxes, a bosom-board, a skirt-board, a large
ironing-board, two or three clothes-frames, and six dozen clothes-pins.

_Basket Ware._ Baskets, of all sizes, for eggs, fruit, marketing,
clothes, &c.; also chip-baskets. When often used, they should be washed
in hot suds.

_Other Articles._ Every kitchen needs a box containing balls of brown
thread and twine, a large and small darning needle, rolls of waste-paper
and old linen and cotton, and a supply of common holders. There should
also be another box, containing a hammer, carpet-tacks, and nails of all
sizes, a carpet-claw, screws and a screw-driver, pincers, gimlets of
several sizes, a bed-screw, a small saw, two chisels, (one to use for
buttonholes in broadcloth,) two awls, and two files.

In a drawer, or cupboard, should be placed, cotton table-cloths, for
kitchen use, nice crash towels, for tumblers, marked, T T; coarser
towels, for dishes, marked, T; six large roller-towels; a dozen
hand-towels, marked, H T; and a dozen hemmed dish-cloths, with loops.
Also, two thick linen pudding or dumpling-cloths, a gelly-bag, made of
white flannel, to strain gelly, a starch-strainer, and a bag for boiling

In a closet, should be kept, arranged in order, the following articles:
the dust-pan, dust-brush, and dusting-cloths, old flannel and cotton for
scouring and rubbing, sponges for washing windows and looking-glasses, a
long brush for cobwebs, and another for washing the outside of windows,
whisk-brooms, common brooms, a coat-broom or brush, a whitewash-brush, a
stove-brush, shoebrushes and blacking, articles for cleaning tin and
silver, leather for cleaning metals, bottles containing stain-mixtures,
and other articles used in cleansing.


A cellar should often be whitewashed, to keep it sweet. It should have a
drain, to keep it perfectly dry, as standing water, in a cellar, is a
sure cause of disease in a family. It is very dangerous to leave decayed
vegetables in a cellar. Many a fever has been caused, by the poisonous
miasm thus generated. The following articles are desirable in a cellar:
a safe, or moveable closet, with sides of wire or perforated tin, in
which cold meats, cream, and other articles should be kept; (if ants be
troublesome, set the legs in tin cups of water;) a refrigerator, or
large wooden box, on feet, with a lining of tin or zinc, and a space
between the tin and wood filled with powdered charcoal, having at the
bottom, a place for ice, a drain to carry off the water, and also
moveable shelves and partitions. In this, articles are kept cool. It
should be cleaned, once a week. Filtering jars, to purify water, should
also be kept in the cellar. Fish and cabbages, in a cellar, are apt to
scent a house, and give a bad taste to other articles.


Every house needs a storeroom, in which to keep tea, coffee, sugar,
rice, candles, &c. It should be furnished with jars, having labels, a
large spoon, a fork, sugar and flour-scoops, a towel, and a dish-cloth.

_Modes of destroying Insects and Vermin._

_Bed-bugs_ should be kept away, by filling every chink in the bedstead
with putty, and, if it be old, painting it over. Of all the mixtures for
killing them, _corrosive sublimate and alcohol_ is the surest. This is a
strong poison.

_Cockroaches_ may be destroyed, by pouring boiling water into their
haunts, or setting a mixture of arsenic, mixed with Indian meal and
molasses, where they are found. Chloride of lime and sweetened water
will also poison them.

_Fleas._ If a dog be infested with these insects, put him in a tub of
warm soapsuds, and they will rise to the surface. Take them off, and
burn them. Strong perfumes, about the person, diminish their attacks.
When caught between the fingers, plunge them in water, or they will

_Crickets._ Scalding, and sprinkling Scotch snuff about the haunts of
these insects, are remedies for the annoyance caused by them.

_Flies_ can be killed, in great quantities, by placing about the house
vessels, filled with sweetened water and _cobalt_. Six cents worth of
cobalt is enough for a pint of water. It is very poisonous.

_Musquitoes._ Close nets around a bed, are the only sure protection at
night, against these insects. Spirit of hartshorn is the best antidote
for their bite. Salt and water is good.

_Red_ or _Black Ants_ may be driven away, by scalding their haunts, and
putting Scotch snuff wherever they go for food. Set the legs of closets
and safes in pans of water, and they cannot get at them.

_Moths._ Airing clothes does not destroy moths, but laying them in a hot
sun does. If articles be tightly sewed up in linen, and fine tobacco be
put about them, it is a sure protection. This should be done in April.

_Rats and Mice._ A good cat is the best remedy for these annoyances.
Equal quantities of hemlock, (or _cicuta_,) and old cheese, will poison
them, but this renders the house liable to the inconvenience of a bad
smell. This evil, however, may be lessened, by placing a dish,
containing oil of vitriol poured on saltpetre, where the smell is most
annoying. Chloride of lime and water is also good.



Every young girl should be taught to do the following kinds of stitch,
with propriety. Over-stitch, hemming, running, felling, stitching,
back-stitch and run, buttonhole-stitch, chain-stitch, whipping, darning,
gathering, and cross-stitch.

In doing over-stitch, the edges should always be first fitted, either
with pins or basting, to prevent puckering. In turning wide hems, a
paper measure should be used, to make them even. Tucks, also, should be
regulated by a paper measure. A fell should be turned, before the edges
are put together, and the seam should be over-sewed, before felling. All
biased or goring seams should be felled. For stitching, draw a thread,
and take up two or three threads at a stitch.

In making buttonholes, it is best to have a pair of scissors, made for
the purpose, which cut very neatly. For broadcloth, a chisel and board
are better. The best stitch is made by putting in the needle, and then
turning the thread around it, near the eye. This is better than to draw
the needle through, and then take up a loop. A thread should first be
put across each side of the buttonhole, and also a stay-thread, or bar,
at each end, before working it. In working the buttonhole, keep the
stay-thread as far from the edge as possible. A small bar should be
worked at each end. Whipping is done better by sewing _over_, and not
under. The roll should be as fine as possible, the stitches short, the
thread strong, and in sewing, every gather should be taken up.

The rule for _gathering_, in shirts, is, to draw a thread, and then take
up two threads and skip four. In _darning_, after the perpendicular
threads are run, the crossing threads should interlace, exactly, taking
one thread and leaving one, like woven threads.

The neatest sewers always fit and baste their work, before sewing; and
they say they always save time in the end, by so doing, as they never
have to pick out work, on account of mistakes.

It is wise to sew closely and tightly all new garments, which will never
be altered in shape; but some are more nice than wise, in sewing frocks,
and old garments, in the same style. However, this is the least common
extreme. It is much more frequently the case, that articles, which ought
to be strongly and neatly made, are sewed so that a nice sewer would
rather pick out the threads and sew over again, than to be annoyed with
the sight of grinning stitches, and vexed with constant rips.

_Workbaskets._ It is very important to neatness, comfort, and success in
sewing, that a lady's workbasket should be properly fitted up. The
following articles are needful to the mistress of a family: a large
basket, to hold work; having in it, fastened, a smaller basket, or box,
containing a needle-book, in which are needles of every size, both
blunts and sharps, with a larger number of those sizes most used; also,
small and large darning-needles, for woollen, cotton, and silk; two
tape-needles, large and small; nice scissors, for fine work; buttonhole
scissors; an emery-bag; two balls of white and yellow wax; and two
thimbles, in case one should be mislaid. When a person is troubled with
damp fingers, a lump of soft chalk, in a paper, is useful, to rub on the
ends of the fingers.

Besides this box, keep in the basket, common scissors; small shears; a
bag containing tapes, of all colors and sizes, done up in rolls; bags,
one, containing spools of white, and another of colored, cotton thread,
and another for silks, wound on spools or papers; a box or bag for nice
buttons, and another for more common ones; a bag containing silk braid,
welting cords, and galloon binding. Small rolls of pieces of white and
brown linen and cotton, are also often needed. A brick pincushion is a
great convenience, in sewing, and better than screw-cushions. It is made
by covering half a brick with cloth, putting a cushion on the top, and
covering it tastefully. It is very useful to hold pins and needles,
while sewing, and to fasten long seams when basting and sewing.

_To make a Frock._ The best way for a novice, is, to get a dress fitted
(not sewed) at the best mantuamaker's. Then take out a sleeve, rip it
to pieces, and cut out a pattern. Then take out half of the waist, (it
must have a seam in front,) and cut out a pattern of the back and
fore-body, both lining and outer part. In cutting the patterns, iron the
pieces, smooth, let the paper be stiff, and, with a pin, prick holes in
the paper, to show the gore in front, and the depth of the seams. With a
pen and ink, draw lines from each pinhole, to preserve this mark. Then
baste the parts together again, in doing which, the unbasted half will
serve as a pattern. When this is done, a lady of common ingenuity can
cut and fit a dress, by these patterns. If the waist of a dress be too
tight, the seam under the arm must be let out; and in cutting a dress,
an allowance should be made, for letting it out, if needful, at this
seam. The lining of the fore-body must be biased.

The linings for the waists of dresses should be stiffened cotton or
linen. In cutting bias-pieces, for trimming, they will not set well,
unless they are exact. In cutting them, use a long rule, and a lead
pencil or piece of chalk. Welting-cords should be covered with
bias-pieces; and it saves time, in many cases, to baste on the
welting-cord, at the same time that you cover it. The best way to put on
hooks and eyes, is to sew them on double broad tape, and then sew this
on the frock-lining. They can then be moved easily, and do not show
where they are sewed on.

In cutting a sleeve, double it biased. The skirts of dresses look badly,
if not full; and in putting on lining, at the bottom, be careful to have
it a very little fuller than the dress, or it will shrink, and look
badly. All thin silks look much better with lining, and last much
longer, as do aprons, also. In putting a lining to a dress, baste it on
each separate breadth, and sew it in at the seams, and it looks much
better than to have it fastened only at the bottom. Make notches in
selvedge, to prevent it from drawing up the breadth. Dresses, which are
to be washed, should not be lined.

Figured silks do not generally wear well, if the figure be large and
satin-like. Black and plain-colored silks can be tested, by procuring
samples, and making creases in them; fold the creases in a bunch, and
rub them against a rough surface, of moreen or carpeting. Those which
are poor, will soon wear off, at the creases. Plaids look becoming, for
tall women, as they shorten the appearance of the figure. Stripes look
becoming, on a large person, as they reduce the apparent size. Pale
persons should not wear blue or green, and brunettes should not wear
light delicate colors, except shades of buff, fawn, or straw color.
Pearl white is not good for any complexion. Dead white and black look
becoming on almost all persons. It is best to try colors, by
candle-light, for evening dresses; as some colors, which look very
handsome in the daylight, are very homely when seen by candle-light.
Never cut a dress low in the neck, as this shows that a woman is not
properly instructed in the rules of modesty and decorum, or that she has
not sense enough to regard them. Never be in haste to be first in a
fashion, and never go to the extremes.

In buying linen, seek for that which has a round close thread, and is
perfectly white; for, if it be not white, at first, it will never
afterwards become so. Much that is called linen, at the shops, is half
cotton, and does not wear so well as cotton alone. Cheap linens are
usually of this kind. It is difficult to discover which are all linen;
but the best way, is, to find a lot, presumed to be good, take a sample,
wash it, and ravel it. If this be good, the rest of the same lot will
probably be so. If you cannot do this, draw a thread, each way, and if
both appear equally strong, it is probably all linen. Linen and cotton
must be put in clean water, and boiled, to get out the starch, and then
ironed. A long piece of linen, a yard wide, will, with care and
calculation, make eight shirts. In cutting it, take a shirt of the right
size, as a guide, in fitting and basting. Bosom-pieces, false collars,
&c. must be cut and fitted, by a pattern which suits the person for whom
the articles are designed. Gentlemen's night-shirts are made like other
shirts, except that they are longer. In cutting chemises, if the cotton
or linen is a yard wide, cut off small half gores, at the top of the
breadths, and set them on the bottom. Use a long rule and a pencil, in
cutting gores. In cutting cotton, which is quite wide, a seam can be
saved, by cutting out two at once, in this manner:--cut off three
breadths, and, with a long rule and a pencil, mark and cut off the
gores, thus: from one breadth, cut off two gores, the whole length, each
gore one fourth of the breadth, at the bottom, and tapering off to a
point, at the top. The other two breadths are to have a gore cut off
from each, which is one fourth wide at top, and two fourths at bottom.
Arrange these pieces right, and they will make two chemises, one having
four seams, and the other three. This is a much easier way of cutting,
than sewing the three breadths together, in bag-fashion, as is often
done. The biased, or goring seams, must always be felled. The sleeves
and neck can be cut according to the taste of the wearer, by another
chemise for a pattern. There should be a lining around the armholes,
and stays at all corners. Six yards, of yard width, will make two

Old silk dresses, quilted for skirts, are very serviceable. White
flannel is soiled so easily, and shrinks so much in washing, that it is
a good plan to color it a light dove-color, according to the receipt
given on page 301. Cotton flannel, dyed thus, is also good for common
skirts. In making up flannel, back-stitch and run the seams, and then
cross-stitch them open. Nice flannel, for infants, can be ornamented,
with very little expense of time, by turning up the hem, on the right
side, and making a little vine at the edge, with saddler's silk. The
stitch of the vine is a modification of buttonhole-stitch.

Long night gowns are best, cut a little goring. It requires five yards,
for a long nightgown, and two and a half for a short one. Linen
nightcaps wear longer than cotton ones, and do not, like them, turn
yellow. They should be ruffled with linen, as cotton borders will not
last so long as the cap. A double-quilted wrapper is a great comfort, in
case of sickness. It may be made of two old dresses. It should not be
cut full, but rather like a gentleman's study-gown, having no gathers or
plaits, but large enough to slip off and on with ease. A double gown, of
calico, is also very useful. Most articles of dress, for grown persons
or children, require patterns.

_Bedding._ The best beds, are thick hair mattresses, which, for persons
in health, are good for Winter as well as Summer use. Mattresses may
also be made of husks, dried and drawn into shreds; also, of alternate
layers of cotton and moss. The most profitable sheeting, is the Russian,
which will last three times as long as any other. It is never perfectly
white. Unbleached cotton is good for Winter. It is poor economy to make
narrow and short sheets, as children and domestics will always slip them
off, and soil the bedtick and bolster. They should be three yards long,
and two and a half wide, so that they can be tucked in all around. All
bed-linen should be marked and numbered, so that a bed can always be
made properly, and all missing articles be known.

_Mending._ Silk dresses will last much longer, by ripping out the
sleeves, when thin, and changing the arms, and also the breadths of the
skirt. Tumbled black silk, which is old and rusty, should be dipped in
water, then be drained for a few minutes, without squeezing or pressing,
and then ironed. Cold tea is better than water. Sheets, when worn thin
in the middle, should be ripped, and the other edges sewed together.
Window-curtains last much longer, if lined, as the sun fades and rots
them. Broadcloth should be cut with reference to the way the nap runs.
When pantaloons are thin, it is best to newly seat them, cutting the
piece inserted in a curve, as corners are difficult to fit. When the
knees are thin, it is a case of domestic surgery, which demands
_amputation_. This is performed, by cutting off both legs, some distance
above the knees, and then changing the legs. Take care to cut them off
exactly of the same length, or in the exchange they will not fit. This
method brings the worn spot under the knees, and the seam looks much
better than a patch and darn. Hose can be cut down, when the feet are
worn. Take an old stocking, and cut it up for a pattern. Make the heel
short. In sewing, turn each edge, and run it down, and then sew over the
edges. This is better than to stitch and then cross-stitch. Run thin
places in stockings, and it will save darning a hole. If shoes are worn
through on the sides, in the upper-leather, slip pieces of broadcloth
under, and sew them around the holes. If, in sewing, the thread kinks,
break it off and begin at the other end. In using spool-cotton, thread
the needle with the end which comes off first, and not the end where you
break it off. This often prevents kinks.



The authorities consulted in the preparation of this and kindred
chapters, are, Loudon's Encyclopædia of Gardening, Bridgeman's Young
Gardener, Hovey's Magazine of Horticulture, the writings of Judge
Buel,[T] and Downing's Landscape Gardening.

_On the Preparation of Soil._

If the garden soil be clayey, and adhesive, put on a covering of sand,
three inches thick, and the same depth of well-rotted manure. Spade it
in, as deep as possible, and mix it well. If the soil be sandy and
loose, spade in clay and ashes. Ashes are good for all kinds of soil, as
they loosen those which are close, hold moisture in those which are
sandy, and destroy insects. The best kind of soil, is that, which will
hold water the longest, without becoming hard, when dry.

_To prepare Soil for Pot-plants_, take one fourth part of common soil,
one fourth part of well-decayed manure, and one half of vegetable mould,
from the woods, or from a chip-yard. Break up the manure, fine, and sift
it through a lime-screen, (or coarse wire sieve.) These materials must
be thoroughly mixed. When the common soil which is used, is adhesive,
and, indeed, in most other cases, it is necessary to add sand, the
proportion of which, must depend on the nature of the soil.

_On the Preparation of a Hot Bed._ Dig a pit, six feet long, five feet
wide, and thirty inches deep. Make a frame, of the same size, with the
back two feet high, the front fifteen inches, and the sides sloped from
the back to the front. Make two sashes, each three feet by five, with
the panes of glass lapping like shingles, instead of having cross bars.
Set the frame over the pit, which should then be filled with fresh
horse-dung, which has not lain long, nor been sodden by water. Tread it
down, hard, then put into the frame, light, and very rich soil, ten or
twelve inches deep, and cover it with the sashes, for two or three days.
Then stir the soil, and sow the seeds in shallow drills, placing sticks
by them, to mark the different kinds. Keep the frame covered with the
glass, whenever it is cold enough to chill the plants; but at all other
times, admit fresh air, which is indispensable to their health. When the
sun is quite warm, raise the glasses, enough to admit air, and cover
them with matting or blankets, or else the sun may kill the young
plants. Water the bed at evening, with water which has stood all day,
or, if it be fresh drawn, add a little warm water. If there be too much
heat in the bed, so as to scorch or wither the plants, make deep holes,
with stakes, and fill them up when the heat is reduced. In very cold
nights, cover the box with straw.

_On Planting Flower Seeds._

Break up the soil, till it is very soft, and free from lumps. Rub that
nearest the surface, between the hands, to make it fine. Make a circular
drill, a foot in diameter. For seeds as large as sweet peas, it should
be half an inch deep. The smallest seeds must be planted very near the
surface, and a very little fine earth be sifted over them. Seeds are to
be planted either deeper or nearer the surface, according to their size.
After covering them with soil, beat them down with a trowel, so as to
make the earth as compact as it is after a heavy shower. Set up a stick,
in the middle of the circle, with the name of the plant heavily written
upon it, with a dark lead pencil. This remains more permanent, if white
lead be first rubbed over the surface. Never plant, when the soil is
very wet. In very dry times, water the seeds at night. Never use very
cold water. When the seeds are small, many should be planted together,
that they may assist each other in breaking the soil. When the plants
are an inch high, thin them out, leaving only one or two, if the plant
be a large one, like the Balsam; five or six, when it is of a medium
size; and eighteen or twenty of the smaller size. Transplanting, retards
the growth of a plant about a fortnight. It is best to plant at two
different times, lest the first planting should fail, owing to wet or
cold weather.

_To Plant Garden Seeds._

Make the beds a yard wide; lay across them a board, a yard long and a
foot wide, and, with a stick, make a furrow, on each side of it, one
inch deep. Scatter the seeds in this furrow, and cover them. Then lay
the board over them and step on it, to press down the earth. When the
plants are an inch high, thin them out, leaving spaces proportioned to
their sizes. Seeds of a similar species, such as melons and squashes,
should not be planted very near to each other, as this causes them to
degenerate. The same kinds of vegetables should not be planted in the
same place, for two years in succession.

_On Transplanting._

Transplant at evening, or, which is better, just before a shower. Take a
round stick, sharpened at the point, and make openings to receive the
plants. Set them a very little deeper than they were before, and press
the soil firmly round them. Then water them, and cover them for three or
four days, taking care that sufficient air be admitted. If the plant can
be removed, without disturbing the soil around the root, it will not be
at all retarded, by transplanting. Never remove leaves and branches,
unless a part of the roots be lost.

_To Re-pot House-Plants._

Renew the soil, every year, soon after the time of blossoming. Prepare
soil, as previously directed. Loosen the earth from the pot, by passing
a knife around the sides. Turn the plant upside down, and remove the
pot. Then remove all the matted fibres at the bottom, and all the earth,
except that which adheres to the roots. From woody plants, like roses,
shake off all the earth. Take the new pot, and put a piece of broken
earthen-ware over the hole at the bottom; and then, holding the plant in
the proper position, shake in the earth, around it. Then pour in water,
to settle the earth, and heap on fresh soil, till the pot is even full.
Small pots are considered better than large ones, as the roots are not
so likely to rot, from excess of moisture.

_On the Laying out of Yards and Gardens._

In planting trees, in a yard, they should be arranged in groups, and
never planted in straight lines, nor sprinkled about, as solitary trees.
The object of this arrangement, is, to imitate Nature, and secure some
spots of dense shade and some of cleared turf. In yards which are
covered with turf, beds can be cut out of it, and raised for flowers. A
trench should be made around, to prevent the grass from running on them.
These beds can be made in the shape of crescents, ovals, or other
fanciful forms, of which, the figure below is one specimen.

[Illustration: Fig. 39.]

In laying out beds, in gardens and yards, a very pretty bordering can be
made, by planting them with common flax seed, in a line about three
inches from the edge. This can be trimmed, with shears, when it grows
too high.

_On the Cultivation of Bulbs, and Tuberous Roots._

For planting the _Amaryllis_, take one third part of leaf mould, half as
much sand, and the remainder, earth from under fresh grass sods. Plant
them in May. The bulb should not be set more than half its depth in the

The _Anemone_ and _Ranunculus_ are medium, or half-hardy, roots. They
should be planted in soil which is enriched with cowdung, and the beds
should be raised only an inch from the walk. They must be planted in
October, in drills, two inches deep, the claws of the roots downward,
and be shaded when they begin to bud.

The _Crocus_ must be planted in October, two inches deep, and four
inches apart. In measuring the depth, always calculate from the top of
the bulb.

_Crown Imperial._ This must be planted in September, three or four
inches deep; and need not be taken up but once in three years.

_Gladiolus._ Those who have greenhouses, or pits, plant the Gladiolus in
October, and preserve it in pots through the Winter. Those who have not
these conveniences, may plant these bulbs late in April. The earth must
be composed of one half common soil, one fourth leaf mould, and one
fourth sand. Plant them about an inch deep.

_Hyacinths_ should be planted in October, eight inches apart, and three
or four inches deep, in a rich soil.

_Jonquilles_ should be planted in October, two inches deep, in a rich
soil, and should not be taken up oftener than once in three years.

_Narcissus._ This should be planted in October, four inches deep;
covered, through the Winter, with straw and leaves, six inches thick;
and uncovered in the middle of March.

_Oxalis._ Plant this in September, in a soil, composed of two thirds
common earth, and one third leaf mould. The old bulb dies after
blossoming, and is succeeded by a new one.

Plant _Tulips_, in rich soil, in October, three inches deep.

Plant _Tuberoses_ late in April, in a rich, sandy soil. They are
delicate plants, and should be covered, in case of frosts.

_Daffodils_ should be planted two inches deep.

When bulbs have done flowering, and their leaves begin to decay, they
should be taken up and dried, and kept in a dry place, till October,
when they are to be replanted, taking off the offsets, and putting them
in a bed by themselves.

Bulbs which blossom in water, or are in any other way forced to bloom
out of season, are so much exhausted by it, that it takes them two or
three years to recover their beauty.

_Dahlias._ Dig a hole, a foot and a half deep; fill it with very light,
loose, and rich, soil; and drive in a stake, a yard and a half high, to
which, to tie the future plants. Then set in the root, so that it shall
be an inch below the soil, where the sprout starts. When the plants are
two feet high, tie them to the stakes, and take off some of the lower
side-shoots. Continue to tie them, as their growth advances. If the
roots are planted in the open borders, without any previous growth, it
should be done as early as the first of May, and they should be covered
from the frosts. When they are brought forward, in pots or hot-beds,
they should be put out, in the middle of June. It is said, by gardeners,
that late planting, is better than early, for producing perfect flowers.
In the Autumn, after the frosts have destroyed the tops, let the roots
remain awhile in the ground, to ripen; then dig them up, and pack them
away, in some place where they will neither mould, from dampness, nor
freeze. In the Spring, these roots will throw out sprouts, and must then
be divided, so as to leave a good shoot, attached to a piece of the
tuber or old stem, and each shoot will make a new plant. It is stated,
that if the shoots themselves, without any root, be planted in light
soil, covered with a bell-glass, or large tumbler, and carefully
watered, they will produce plants superior to those with roots.


These are flowers which last only one season. They should be so planted,
that the tallest may be in the middle of a bed, and the shortest at the
edges; and flowers of a similar color should not be planted adjacent to
each other.

The following is a list of some of the handsomest Annuals, arranged with
reference to their color and height. Those with a star before them, do
best when sowed in the Autumn. Those with _tr._ after them, are trailing


_White._ Ice Plant, Sweet Alyssum, White Leptosiphon, Walker's
Schizopetalon, Blumenbachia insignis, *Candytuft.

_Yellow._ *Yellow Chryseis or Eschscholtzia, Sanvitalia procumbens,
_tr._, Musk-flowered Mimulus.

_Rose._ Many-flowered Catchfly, Rose-colored Verbena, _tr._

_Red._ *Chinese Annual Pink, Virginian Stock, Calandrinia Speciosa.

_Blue._ Graceful Lobelia, Nemophila insignis, Clintonia pulchella,
Clintonia elegans, Nolana atriplicifolia, _tr._, Anagallis indica,
Commelina coelestis, Grove Love, Pimpernel (blue.)

_Varying Colors._ *Heart's Ease, or Pansy, Dwarf Love in a Mist, *Rose


_White._ Venus's Looking Glass, Priest's Schizanthus, Sweet-scented
Stevia, White Evening Primrose.

_Yellow._ Drummond's Coreopsis, *New Dark Coreopsis, Golden Hawkweed,
Dracopis amplexicaulis, Drummond's Primrose, Cladanthus arabicus,
Peroffsky's Erysimum.

_Rose._ Drummond's Phlox, Rodanthe, Rose-colored Nonea, Clarkia rosea,
Silene Tenorei, Silene armeria.

_Red._ Crimson Coxcomb, Silene pendula, Crimson Dew Plant, _tr._

_Scarlet._ Cacalia coccinea, Flos Adonis, Scarlet Zinnia, Mexican

_Lilac and Purple._ Clarkia elegans, Clarkia pulchella, *Purple
Candytuft, *Purple Petunia, _tr._, *Crimson Candytuft, Double Purple
Jacobæa, Leptosiphon androsaceus, all the varieties of Schizanthus,
Veined Verbena, _tr._, *Purple eternal Flower.

_Blue._ Ageratum Mexicanum, *Gilia capitata, Spanish Nigella, Blue
Eutoca, Dwarf Convolvulus, Didiscus coeruleus.

_Lilac, Purple_, or _Blue and White._ Collinsia bicolor, Gilia tricolor.

_Very Dark._ Lotus Jacobæus, Salpiglossis, Scabious.

_Colors varying._ German Aster, Balsam, Rocket Larkspur, Ten-week Stock,


_White._ *White Petunia, _tr._, White Clarkia, Double White Jacobæa,
Love in a Mist.

_Red._ *Lavatera trimestris, Red Zinnia, Malva miniata.

_Lilac and Purple._ Globe Amaranthus, Purple Sweet Sultan, Sweet
Scabious, Purple Zinnia, Prince's Feather, Large Blue Lupine, *Catchfly.


_White._ Winged Ammobium, *White Lavatera, White Sweet Sultan, *New
White Eternal Flower, White Helicrysum, *White Larkspur.

_Yellow._ Golden Bartonia, *Golden Coreopsis, Yellow Sweet Sultan,
African Marigold, Yellow Argemone, French Marigold, Yellow Coxcomb,
Yellow Hibiscus.

The Malope grandiflora and the Cleome are fine tall annuals.

_Climbing Plants._

The following are the most beautiful _annual climbers_: Crimson, and
White, Cypress Vine; White, and Buff, Thunbergia; Scarlet Flowering
Bean; Hyacinth Bean Loasa; Morning Glory; Crimson, and Spotted,
Nasturtium; Balloon Vine; Sweet Pea; Tangier Pea; Lord Anson's Pea;
Climbing Cobæa; Pink, and White, Maurandia.

The following are the most valuable _perennial climbers_: Sweet-scented
Monthly Honeysuckle; Yellow, White, and Coral, Honeysuckles; Purple
Glycine; Clematis; Bitter Sweet; Trumpet Creeper.

The Everlasting Pea is a beautiful perennial climber. The Climbing
Cobæa, and Passion Flower, are also beautiful perennials, but must be
protected in Winter.


Those who cannot afford every year to devote the time necessary to the
raising of annuals, will do well to supply their borders with
perennials. The following is a list of some of those generally

Adonis, yellow; Columbine, all colors; Alyssum, yellow; Asclepias,
orange and purple; Bee Larkspur, blue; Perennial Larkspur, all colors;
Cardinal Flower, scarlet; Chinese Pink, various colors; Clove Pink;
Foxglove, purple and white; Gentian, purple and yellow; Hollyhock,
various colors; *Lily of the Valley; American Phlox, various colors;
Scarlet Lychnis; Monkshood, white and blue; *Spirea, white, and pink;
*Ragged Robin, pink; Rudbeckia, yellow, and purple; Sweet William, in
variety. Those marked with a star cannot be obtained from seed, but must
be propagated by roots, layers, &c.

_Herbaceous Roots._

These are such as die to the root, in the Fall, and come up again in the
Spring, such as Pæonies, crimson, white, sweet-scented, and
straw-colored; Artemisia, of many colors; White and Purple
Fleur-de-lis; White, Tiger, Fire, and other Lilies; Little Blue Iris;
Chrysanthemums, &c. These are propagated by dividing the roots.


The following are the finest _Shrubs for yards_: Lilacs, (which, by
budding, can have white and purple on the same tree,) Double Syringas,
Double Althæas, Corchorus Japonicus, Snow-berry, Double-flowering
Almond, Pyrus Japonica, Common Barberry, Burning Bush, Rose Acacia,
Yellow Laburnum. The following are the finest Roses: Moss Rose, White,
and Red; Double and Single Yellow Rose, (the last needs a gravelly soil
and northern exposure;) Yellow Multiflora; La Belle Africana; Small
Eglantine, for borders; Champney's Blush Rose; Noisette; Greville, (very
fine;) Damask; Blush, White, and Cabbage Roses. Moss Roses, when budded
on other rose bushes, last only three years.

_Shade Trees._ The following are among the finest: Mountain Ash;
Ailanthus, or Tree of Heaven, (grows very fast;) Tulip Tree; Linden;
Elm; Locust; Maple; Dog Wood; Horse Chestnut; Catalpa; Hemlock; Silver
Fir; and Cedar. These should be grouped, in such a manner that trees of
different shades of green, and of different heights, should stand in the
same group.

The Autumn is the best time for transplanting trees. Take as much of the
root, as possible, especially the little fibres, which should never
become dry. If kept long, before they are set out, put wet moss around
them, and water them. Dig holes, larger than the extent of the roots;
let one person hold the tree in its former position, and another place
the roots, carefully, as they were before, cutting off any broken or
wounded root. _Be careful not to let the tree be more than an inch
deeper than it was before._ Let the soil be soft, and well manured;
shake the tree, as the soil is shaken in, that it may mix well among
the small fibres. Do not tread the earth down, while filling the hole;
but, when it is full, raise a slight mound, of, say, four inches, and
then tread it down. Make a little basin, two inches deep, around the
stem, to hold water, and fill it. Never cut off leaves nor branches,
unless some of the roots are lost. Tie the trees to a stake, and they
will be more likely to live. Water them often.

_On the Care of House-Plants._

The soil of house-plants should be renewed every year, as previously
directed. In Winter, they should be kept as dry as they can be without
wilting. Many house-plants are injured by giving them too much water,
when they have little light and fresh air. This makes them grow
spindling. The more fresh air, warmth, and light, they have, the more
water is needed. They ought not to be kept very warm in Winter, nor
exposed to great changes of atmosphere. Forty degrees is a proper
temperature for plants in Winter, when they have little sun and air.
When plants have become spindling, cut off their heads, entirely, and
cover the pot in the earth, where it has the morning sun, only. A new
and flourishing head will spring out. Few house-plants can bear the sun
at noon. When insects infest plants, set them in a closet, or under a
barrel, and burn tobacco. The smoke kills any insect enveloped in it.
When plants are frozen, cold water, and a gradual restoration of warmth,
are the best remedies. Never use very cold water for plants, at any


[T] His 'Farmers' Companion' was written expressly for the larger series
of 'THE SCHOOL LIBRARY,' issued by the publishers of this volume.



Bulbous roots are propagated by offsets; some growing on the top, others
around the sides. Many plants are propagated by cutting off twigs, and
setting them in earth, so that two or three eyes are covered. To do
this, select a side shoot, ten inches long, two inches of it, being of
the preceding year's growth, and the rest, the growth of the season when
it is set out. Do this, when the sap is running, and put a piece of
crockery at the bottom of the shoot, when it is buried. One eye, at
least, must be under the soil. Water it, and shade it in hot weather.
Plants are also propagated by layers. To do this, take a shoot, which
comes up near the root, bend it down, so as to bring several eyes under
the soil, leaving the top above ground. If the shoot be cut half
through, in a slanting direction, at one of these eyes, before burying
it, the result is more certain. Roses, honeysuckles, and many other
shrubs, are readily propagated thus. They will generally take root, by
being simply buried; but cutting them, as here directed, is the best
method. Layers are more certain than cuttings. For all woody plants,
budding and grafting are favorite methods of propagation. In all such
plants, there is an outer and inner bark; the latter containing the sap
vessels, in which the nourishment of the tree ascends.

The success of grafting, or inoculating, consists in so placing the bud
or graft, that the sap vessels of the inner bark shall exactly join
those of the plant into which they are grafted, so that the sap may pass
from one into the other.

The following are directions for _budding_, which may be performed at
any time from July to September.

Select a smooth place, on the stock into which you are to insert the
bud. Make a horizontal cut, across the rind, through to the firm wood;
and from the middle of this, make a slit downward, perpendicularly, an
inch or more long, through to the wood. Raise the bark of the stock, on
each side of the perpendicular cut, for the admission of the bud, as is
shown in the annexed engraving, (Fig. 40.) Then take a shoot of this
year's growth, and slice from it a bud, taking an inch below and an
inch above it, and some portion of the wood under it. Then carefully
slip off the woody part, under the bud. Examine whether the eye or gem
of the bud be perfect. If a little hole appears in that part, the bud
has lost its root, and another must be selected. Insert the bud, so that
_a_, of the bud, shall pass to a, of the stock; then _b_, of the bud,
must be cut off, to match the cut, b, in the stock, and fitted exactly
to it, as it is this alone which insures success. Bind the parts, with
fresh bass, or woollen yarn, beginning a little below the bottom of the
perpendicular slit, and winding it closely round every part, except just
over the eye of the bud, until you arrive above the horizontal cut. Do
not bind it too tightly, but just sufficient to exclude air, sun, and
wet. This is to be removed, after the bud is firmly fixed, and begins to

[Illustration: Fig. 40.]

Seed-fruit can be budded into any other seed-fruit, and stone-fruit into
any other stone-fruit; but stone and seed-fruits, cannot be thus

Rose bushes can have a variety of kinds budded into the same stock.
Hardy roots are the best stocks. The branch above the bud, must be cut
off, the next March or April after the bud is put in. Apples and pears,
are more easily propagated by ingrafting, than by budding.

Ingrafting is a similar process to budding, with this advantage; that it
can be performed on large trees, whereas budding can be applied only on
small ones. The two common kinds of ingrafting, are whip-grafting, and
split-grafting. The first kind is for young trees, and the other for
large ones.

[Illustration: Fig. 41.]

The time for ingrafting, is from May to October. The cuttings must be
taken from horizontal shoots, between Christmas and March, and kept in a
damp cellar. In performing the operation, cut off, in a sloping
direction, (as seen in Fig. 41,) the tree or limb to be grafted. Then
cut off, in a corresponding slant, the slip to be grafted on. Then put
them together, so that the inner bark of each shall match, exactly, on
one side, and tie them firmly together, with woollen yarn. It is not
essential that both be of equal size; if the bark of each meet together
exactly on _one_ side, it answers the purpose. But the two must not
differ much, in size. The slope should be an inch and a half, or more,
in length. After they are tied together, the place should be covered
with a salve or composition of beeswax and rosin. A mixture of clay and
cowdung will answer the same purpose. This last must be tied on with a
cloth. Grafting is more convenient than budding, as grafts can be sent
from a great distance; whereas buds must be taken in July or August,
from a shoot of the present year's growth, and cannot be sent to any
great distance.

[Illustration: Fig. 42.]

This engraving, (Fig. 42,) exhibits the mode called stock-grafting; _a_,
being the limb of a large tree which is sawed off and split, and is to
be held open by a small wedge, till the grafts are put in. A graft,
inserted in the limb, is shown at _b_, and at _c_, is one not inserted,
but designed to be put in at _d_, as two grafts can be put into a large
stock. In inserting the graft, be careful to make the edge of the inner
bark of the graft meet exactly the edge of the inner bark of the stock;
for on this, success depends. After the grafts are put in, the wedge
must be withdrawn, and the whole of the stock be covered with the thick
salve or composition before mentioned, reaching from where the grafts
are inserted, to the bottom of the slit. Be careful not to knock or move
the grafts, after they are put in.


The following rules for pruning, are from a distinguished
horticulturist. Prune off all dead wood, and all the little twigs on the
main limbs. Retrench branches, so as to give light and ventilation to
the interior of the tree. Select the straight and perpendicular shoots,
which give little or no fruit, while those which are most nearly
horizontal, and somewhat curving, give fruit abundantly, and of good
quality. Superfluous and ill-placed buds may be rubbed off, at any time;
and no buds, pushing out after Midsummer, should be spared. In choosing
between shoots to be retained, preserve the lowest placed; and, on
lateral shoots, those which are nearest the origin. When branches cross
each other, so as to rub, remove one or the other. Remove all suckers
from the roots of trees or shrubs. Prune after the sap is in full
circulation, (except in the case of grapes,) as the wounds then heal
best. Some think it best to prune before the sap begins to run.
Pruning-shears, and a pruning-pole, with a chisel at the end, can be
procured of those who deal in agricultural utensils.


As it is the office of the leaves to absorb nourishment from the
atmosphere, they should never be removed, except to mature the wood or
fruit. In doing this, remove such leaves as shade the fruit, as soon as
it is ready to ripen. To do it earlier, impairs the growth. Do it
gradually, at two different times. Thinning the fruit is important, as
tending to increase its size and flavor, and also to promote the
longevity of the tree. If the fruit be thickly set, take off one half,
at the time of setting. Revise in June, and then in July, taking off all
that may be spared. One _very large_ apple to every square foot, is a
rule that may be a sort of guide, in other cases. According to this, two
hundred large apples would be allowed to a tree, whose extent is fifteen
feet by twelve. If any person think this thinning excessive, let him try
two similar trees, and thin one as directed, and leave the other
unthinned. It will be found that the thinned tree will produce an equal
weight, and fruit of much finer flavor.



By a little attention to this matter, a lady, with the help of her
children, can obtain a rich abundance of all kinds of fruit. The writer
has resided in families, where little boys, of eight, ten, and twelve
years old, amused themselves, under the direction of their mother, in
planting walnuts, chestnuts, and hazelnuts, for future time; as well as
in planting and inoculating young fruit-trees, of all descriptions. A
mother, who will take pains to inspire a love for such pursuits, in her
children, and who will aid and superintend them, will save them from
many temptations; and, at a trifling expense, secure to them and herself
a rich reward, in the choicest fruits. The information given in this
work, on this subject, may be relied on, as sanctioned by the most
experienced nursery-men.

The soil, for a nursery, should be rich, well dug, dressed with
well-decayed manure, free from weeds, and protected from cold winds.
Fruit seeds should be planted in the Autumn, an inch and a half or two
inches deep, in ridges four or five feet apart, pressing the earth
firmly over the seeds. While growing, they should be thinned out,
leaving the best ones a foot and a half apart. The soil should be kept
loose, soft, and free from weeds. They should be inoculated or
ingrafted, when of the size of a pipe stem; and in a year after this,
may be transplanted to their permanent stand. Peach trees sometimes bear
in two years from budding, and in four years from planting, if well

In a year after transplanting, take pains to train the head aright.
Straight, upright branches, produce _gourmands_, or twigs bearing only
leaves. The side branches, which are angular or curved, yield the most
fruit. For this reason, the limbs should be trained in curves, and
perpendicular twigs should be cut off, if there be need of pruning. The
last of June is the time for this. Grass should never be allowed to grow
within four feet of a large tree, and the soil should be kept loose, to
admit air to the roots. Trees in orchards should be twenty-five feet
apart. The soil _under_ the top soil, has much to do with the health of
trees. If it be what is called _hard-pan_, the trees will deteriorate.
Trees need to be manured, and to have the soil kept open and free from

_Filberts_ can be raised in any part of this Country. _Figs_ can be
raised in the Middle States. For this purpose, in the Autumn, loosen the
roots, on one side, and bend the tree down to the earth, on the other;
then cover it with a mound of straw, earth, and boards; and early in the
Spring raise it up, and cover the roots. _Currants_ grow well in any but
a wet soil. They are propagated by cuttings. The old wood should be
thinned in the Fall, and manure be put on. They can be trained into
small trees. _Gooseberries_ are propagated by layers and cuttings. They
are best, when kept from suckers and trained like trees. One third of
the old wood should be removed every Autumn. _Raspberries_ do best, when
shaded during a part of the day. They are propagated by layers, slips,
and suckers. There is one kind, which bears monthly. _Strawberries_
require a light soil and vegetable manure. They should be transplanted
in April or September, and be set eight inches apart, in rows nine
inches asunder, and in beds which are two feet wide, with narrow alleys
between them. A part of these plants are _non-bearers_. These have large
flowers, with showy stamens and high black anthers. The _bearers_ have
short stamens, a great number of pistils, and the flowers are every way
less showy. In blossom-time, pull out all the non-bearers. Some think it
best to leave one non-bearer to every twelve bearers; but others pull
them all out. Many beds never produce any fruit, because all the plants
in them are non-bearers. Weeds should be kept from the vines. When the
vines are matted with young plants, the best way is to dig over the
beds, in cross lines, so as to leave some of the plants standing in
little squares, while the rest are turned under the soil. This should be
done over a second time in the same year.

_Grapes._ To raise this fruit, manure the soil, and keep it soft, and
free from weeds. A gravelly or sandy soil, and a south exposure, are
best. Transplant the vines in the early Spring, or, better, in the Fall.
Prune them, the first year, so as to have only two main branches, taking
off all other shoots, as fast as they come. In November, cut off all of
these two branches, except four eyes. The second year, in the Spring,
loosen the earth around the roots, and allow only two branches to grow,
and every month, take off all side shoots. When they are very strong,
preserve only a part, and cut off the rest in the Fall. In November, cut
off all the two main stems, except eight eyes. After the second year no
more pruning is needed, except to reduce the side shoots, for the
purpose of increasing the fruit. All the pruning of grapes, (except
nipping side shoots,) must be done when the sap is not running, or they
will bleed to death. Train them on poles, or lattices, to expose them to
the air and sun. Cover tender vines in the Autumn. Grapes are propagated
by cuttings, layers, and seeds. For cuttings, select, in the Autumn,
well-ripened wood, of the former year, and take five joints for each.
Bury them, till April; then soak them, for some hours, and set them out,
_aslant_, so that all the eyes but one shall be covered.

_To Preserve Fruit._

Raspberries and Strawberries can be preserved, in perfect flavor, in the
following manner. Take a pound of nice sifted sugar for each pound of
fruit. Put them in alternate layers, of fruit and sugar, till the jar is
entirely full, then cork it, and seal it air tight.

Currants and Gooseberries may be perfectly preserved thus. Gather them,
when dry, selecting only the solid ones. Take off the stalks, and put
them in dry junk-bottles. Set them, _uncorked_, in a kettle of water,
and slowly raise it to boiling heat, in order to drive the air out of
the bottles. Then take out the bottles, cork them, and seal them air
tight. Keep them in a dry place, where they will not freeze. The success
of this method depends on excluding air and water.

Apples, Grapes, and such like fruit can be preserved, by packing them,
when dry and solid, in dry sand or sawdust, putting alternate layers of
fruit and sawdust or sand. Some sawdust gives a bad flavor to the fruit.

_Modes of Preserving Fruit Trees._

Heaps of ashes, or tanner's bark, around peach trees, prevent the attack
of the worm. The _yellows_, is a disease of peach trees, which is spread
by the pollen of the blossom. When a tree begins to turn yellow, take it
away, with all its roots, before it blossoms again, or it will infect
other trees. Planting tansy around the roots of fruit trees, is a sure
protection against worms, as it prevents the moth from depositing her
egg. Equal quantities of salt and saltpetre, put around the trunk of a
peach tree, half a pound to a tree, improves the size and flavor of the
fruit. Apply this about the first of April, and if any trees have worms
already in them, put on half the quantity, in addition, in June. To
young trees, just set out, apply one ounce, in April, and another in
June, close to the stem. Sandy soil is best for peaches.

Apple trees are preserved from insects, by a wash of strong ley to the
body and limbs, which, if old, should be first scraped. Caterpillars
should be removed, by cutting down their nests in a damp day. Boring a
hole, in a tree infested with worms, and filling it with sulphur, will
often drive them off immediately.

The _fire-blight_, or _brûlure_, in pear trees, can be stopped, by
cutting off all the blighted branches. It is supposed, by some, to be
owing to an excess of sap, which is remedied by diminishing the roots.

The _curculio_, which destroys plums, and other stone fruit, can be
checked only by gathering up all the fruit that falls, (which contains
their eggs,) and destroying it. The _canker-worm_ can be checked, by
applying a bandage around the body of the tree, and every evening
smearing it with fresh tar.



Every woman should know how to direct in regard to the proper care of
domestic animals, as they often suffer from the negligence of domestics.

The following information, in reference to the care of a horse and cow,
may be useful. A stable should not be very light nor very dark; its
floor should be either plank or soil, as brick or stone pavements injure
the feet. It should be well cleaned, every morning. A horse, kept in a
stable, should be rubbed and brushed every day. A stable-horse needs as
much daily exercise as trotting three miles will give him. Food or drink
should never be given, when a horse is very warm with exercise, as it
causes disease. A horse should be fed, three times a day. Hay,
sheaf-oats, shorts, corn-meal, and bran, are the best food for horses.
When a horse is travelling, order six quarts of oats in the morning,
four at noon, and six at night, and direct that neither food nor water
be given till he is cool.

Keep a horse's legs free from mud, or disease will often result from
the neglect. A horse, much used, should be shod as often as once in two
months. Fish-oil and strong perfumes, on the skin, keep flies from
annoying a horse. Some horses are made fractious by having the
check-rein so tight as to weary the muscles.

A cow should be watered three times a day, and fed with hay, potatoes,
carrots, and boiled corn. Turnips and cabbages give a bad taste to the
milk. Give a handful of salt to a cow, twice a week, and occasionally
give the same quantity to a horse. Let them drink _pure_ water. A
well-fed cow gives double the milk that she will if not fed well. A cow
should go unmilked, for two months before calving, and her milk should
not be used till four days after. The calf must run with the cow for
four days, and then be shut from her, except thrice a day, when it
should take as much food as it wants, and then the cow should be milked

Hens sit twenty days, and should be well fed and watered, during this
time. The first food for chickens should be coarse dry meal. Cold and
damp weather is bad for all young fowls, and they should be well
protected from it. Pepper-berries are good for fowls which have diseases
caused by damp and cold weather.

In Winter, much fuel may be saved, and comfort secured, by stuffing
cotton into all cracks about the windows and the surbases of rooms, and
by listing the doors. Cover strips of wood with baize, and nail them
tight against a door, on the casing.

The following are the causes of smoky chimneys. Short and broad flues,
running up straight, as a narrow flue, with a bend in it, draws best.
Large openings, at the top, draw the wind down, and should be remedied,
by having the summits made tapering. A house higher than a chimney near
it, sometimes makes the chimney smoke, and the evil should be remedied,
by raising the chimney. Too large a throat to the fireplace, sometimes
causes a chimney to smoke, and can be remedied, by a false back, or by
lowering the front, with sheet iron. Shallow fireplaces give out more
heat, and draw as well, as deep ones.

_House-cleaning_ should be done in dry warm weather. Several friends of
the writer maintain, that cleaning paint, and windows, and floors, in
_hard_, _cold_ water, without any soap, using a flannel washcloth, is
much better than using warm suds. It is worth trying. In cleaning in the
common way, sponges are best for windows, and clean water only should be
used. They should be first wiped with linen, and then with old silk. The
outside of windows should be washed with a long brush, made for the
purpose; and they should be rinsed, by throwing upon them water,
containing a little saltpetre.

When inviting company, mention, in the note, the day of the month and
week, and the hour for coming. Provide a place for ladies to dress their
hair, with a glass, pins, and combs. A pitcher of cold water, and a
tumbler, should be added. When the company is small, it is becoming a
common method for the table to be set at one end of the room, the lady
of the house to pour out tea, and the gentlemen of the party to wait on
the ladies and themselves. When tea is sent round, always send a teapot
of hot water to weaken it, and a slop-bowl, or else many persons will
drink their tea much stronger than they wish.

Let it ever be remembered, that the burning of lights and the breath of
guests, are constantly exhausting the air of its healthful principle;
therefore avoid crowding many guests into one room. Do not tempt the
palate by a great variety of unhealthful dainties. Have a warm room for
departing guests, that they may not become chilled before they go out.

A parlor should be furnished with candle and fire screens, for those who
have weak eyes; and if, at table, a person sits with the back near the
fire, a screen should be hung on the back of the chair, as it is very
injurious to the whole system to have the back heated.

Pretty baskets, for flowers or fruits, on centre tables, can be made
thus. Knit, with coarse needles, all the various shades of green and
brown, into a square piece. Press it with a hot iron, and then ravel it
out. Buy a pretty shaped wicker basket, or make one of stiff millinet,
or thin pasteboard, cut the worsted into bunches, and sew them on, to
resemble moss. Then line the basket, and set a cup or dish of water in
it, to hold flowers, or use it for a fruit-basket. Handsome fireboards
are made, by nailing black foundation-muslin to a frame the size of the
fireplace; and then cutting out flowers, from wall-paper, and pasting
them on the muslin, according to the fancy.

India rubber, melted in lamp-oil, and brushed over common shoes, keeps
water out, perfectly. Keep small whisk brooms, wherever gentlemen hang
their clothes, both up stairs and down, and get them to use them if you

Boil new earthen in bran-water, putting the articles in, when cold. Do
the same with porcelain kettles. Never leave wooden vessels out of
doors, as they fall to pieces. In Winter, lift the handle of a pump, and
cover it with blankets, to keep it from freezing.

Broken earthen and china, can often be mended, by tying it up, and
boiling it in milk. _Diamond cement_, when genuine, is very effectual
for the same purpose. Old putty can be softened by muriatic acid. Nail
slats across nursery windows. Scatter ashes on slippery ice, at the
door; or rather, remove it. Clarify impure water with powdered alum, a
teaspoonful to a barrel.


A volume, entitled the _American Housekeeper's Receipt Book_, prepared
by the author of this work, under the supervision of several experienced
housekeepers, is designed as a Supplement to this treatise on Domestic
Economy. The following Preface and Analysis of the Contents will
indicate its design more fully:

_Preface (for the American Housekeeper's Receipt Book.)_

The following objects are aimed at in this work:

_First_, to furnish an _original_ collection of receipts, which shall
embrace a great variety of simple and well-cooked dishes, designed for
every-day comfort and enjoyment.

_Second_, to include in the collection only such receipts as have been
tested by superior housekeepers, and warranted to be _the best_. It is
not a book made up in _any_ department by copying from other books, but
entirely from the experience of the best practical housekeepers.

_Third_, to express every receipt in language which is short, simple,
and perspicuous, and yet to give all directions so minutely as that the
book can be kept in the kitchen, and be used by any domestic who can
read, as a guide in _every one_ of her employments in the kitchen.

_Fourth_, to furnish such directions in regard to small dinner-parties
and evening company as will enable any young housekeeper to perform her
part, on such occasions, with ease, comfort, and success.

_Fifth_, to present a good supply of the rich and elegant dishes
demanded at such entertainments, and yet to set forth so large and
tempting a variety of what is safe, healthful, and good, in connexion
with such warnings and suggestions as it is hoped may avail to promote a
more healthful fashion in regard both to entertainments and to daily
table supplies. No book of this kind will sell without an adequate
supply of the rich articles which custom requires, and in furnishing
them, the writer has aimed to follow the example of Providence, which
scatters profusely both good and ill, and combines therewith the caution
alike of experience, revelation, and conscience, "choose ye that which
is good, that ye and your seed may live."

_Sixth_, in the work on Domestic Economy, together with this, to which
it is a Supplement, the writer has attempted to secure, in a cheap and
popular form, for American housekeepers, a work similar to an English
work which she has examined, entitled the _Encyclopædia of Domestic
Economy, by Thomas Webster and Mrs. Parkes_, containing over twelve
hundred octavo pages of closely-printed matter, treating on every
department of Domestic Economy; a work which will be found much more
useful to English women, who have a plenty of money and well-trained
servants, than to American housekeepers. It is believed that most in
that work which would be of any practical use to American housekeepers,
will be found in this work and the Domestic Economy.

_Lastly_, the writer has aimed to avoid the defects complained of by
most housekeepers in regard to works of this description issued in this
country, or sent from England, such as that, in some cases, the receipts
are so rich as to be both expensive and unhealthful; in others, that
they are so vaguely expressed as to be very imperfect guides; in
others, that the processes are so elaborate and _fussing_ as to make
double the work that is needful; and in others, that the topics are so
limited that some departments are entirely omitted, and all are

In accomplishing these objects, the writer has received contributions of
the pen, and verbal communications from some of the most judicious and
practical housekeepers, in almost every section of this country, so that
the work is fairly entitled to the name it bears of the _American_
Housekeeper's Receipt Book.

The following embraces most of the topics contained in this work.

Suggestions to young housekeepers in regard to style, furniture, and
domestic arrangements.

Suggestions in regard to different modes to be pursued both with foreign
and American domestics.

On providing a proper supply of family stores, on the economical care
and use of them, and on the furniture and arrangement of a store-closet.

On providing a proper supply of utensils to be used in cooking, with
drawings to illustrate.

On the proper construction of ovens, and directions for heating and
managing them.

Directions for securing good yeast and good bread.

Advice in regard to marketing, the purchase of wood, &c.

Receipts for breakfast dishes, biscuits, warm cakes, tea cakes, &c.

Receipts for puddings, cakes, pies, preserves, pickles, sauces, catsups,
and also for cooking all the various kinds of meats, soups, and

The above receipts are arranged so that the more healthful and simple
ones are put in one portion, and the richer ones in another.

Healthful and favourite articles of food for young children.

Receipts for a variety of temperance drinks.

Directions for making tea, coffee, chocolate, and other warm drinks.

Directions for cutting up meats, and for salting down, corning, curing,
and smoking.

Directions for making butter and cheese, as furnished by a practical and
scientific manufacturer of the same, of Goshen, Conn., that land of rich
butter and cheese.

A guide to a selection of a regular course of family dishes, which will
embrace _a successive variety_, and unite convenience with good taste
and comfortable living.

Receipts for articles for the sick, and drawings of conveniences for
their comfort and relief.

Receipts for articles for evening parties and dinner parties, with
drawings to show the proper manner of setting tables, and of supplying
and arranging dishes, both on these, and on ordinary occasions.

An outline of arrangements for a family in moderate circumstances,
embracing the systematic details of work for each domestic, and the
proper mode of doing it, as furnished by an accomplished housekeeper.

Remarks on the different nature of food and drinks, and their relation
to the laws of health.

Suggestions to the domestics of a family, designed to promote a proper
appreciation of the dignity and importance of their station, and a
cheerful and faithful performance of their duties.

Miscellaneous suggestions and receipts.



[Many words, not contained in this GLOSSARY, will be found
explained in the body of the Work, in the places where they first occur.
For these, see INDEX.]

_Academy, the Boston_, an association in Boston, established for the
purpose of promoting the study and culture of the art of music.

_Action brought by the Commonwealth_, a prosecution conducted in the
name of the public, or by the authority of the State.

_Alcoholic_, made of, or containing, alcohol, an inflammable liquid,
which is the basis of ardent spirits.

_Alkali_, (plural _alkalies_,) a chemical substance, which has the
property of combining with, and neutralizing the properties of, acids,
producing salts by the combination. Alkalies change most of the
vegetable blues and purples to green, red to purple, and yellow to
brown. _Caustic alkali_, an alkali deprived of all impurities, being
thereby rendered more caustic and violent in its operation. This term is
usually applied to pure potash. _Fixed alkali_, an alkali that emits no
characteristic smell, and cannot be volatilized or evaporated without
great difficulty. Potash and soda are called the fixed alkalies. Soda is
also called a _fossil_, or _mineral_, _alkali_, and potash, the
_vegetable alkali_. _Volatile alkali_, an elastic, transparent,
colorless, and consequently invisible gas, known by the name of ammonia,
or ammoniacal gas. The odor of spirits of hartshorn is caused by this

_Anglo-American_, English-American, relating to Americans descended from
English ancestors.

_Anne, Queen_, a Queen of England, who reigned from A. D. 1702, to 1714.
She was the daughter of James II., and succeeded to the throne on the
death of William III. She died, August 1, 1714, in the fiftieth year of
her age. She was not a woman of very great intellect; but was deservedly
popular, throughout her reign, being a model of conjugal and maternal
duty, and always intending to do good. She was honored with the title of
'Good Queen Anne', which showed the opinion entertained of her virtues
by the people.

_Anotta_, _Annotto_, _Arnotta_, or _Rocou_, a soft, brownish-red
substance, prepared from the reddish pulp surrounding the seeds of a
tree, which grows in the West Indies, Guiana, and other parts of South
America, called the _Bixa orellana_. It is used as a dye.

_Anther_, that part of the stamen of a flower which contains the pollen
or farina, a sort of mealy powder or dust, which is necessary to the
production of the flower.

_Anthracite_, one of the most valuable kinds of mineral coal, containing
no bitumen. It is very abundant in the United States.

_Aperient_, opening.

_Apple-corer_, an instrument lately invented for the purpose of
divesting apples of their cores.

_Arabic, gum_, see _Gum Arabic_.

_Archæology_, a discourse or treatise on antiquities.

_Arnotto_, see _Anotta_.

_Arrow-root_, a white powder, obtained from the fecula or starch of
several species of tuberous plants in the East and West Indies, Bermuda,
and other places. That from Bermuda is most highly esteemed. It is used
as an article for the table, in the form of puddings; and also as a
highly-nutritive, easily-digested, and agreeable, food, for invalids. It
derives its name from having been originally used by the Indians, as a
remedy for the poison of their arrows, by mashing and applying it to the

_Articulating process_, the protuberance, or projecting part of a bone,
by which it is so joined to another bone, as to enable the two to move
upon each other.

_Asceticism_, the state of an ascetic, or hermit, who flies from society
and lives in retirement, or who practises a greater degree of
mortification and austerity than others do, or who inflicts
extraordinary severities upon himself.

_Astral lamp_, a lamp, the principle of which was invented by Benjamin
Thompson, (a native of Massachusetts, and afterwards Count Rumford,) in
which the oil is contained in a large horizontal ring, having, at the
centre, a burner, which communicates with the ring by tubes. The ring is
placed a little below the level of the flame, and, from its large
surface, affords a supply of oil for many hours.

_Astute_, shrewd.

_Auld Robin Gray_, a celebrated Scotch song, in which a young woman
laments her having married an old rich man, whom she did not love, for
the sake of providing for her poor parents.

_Auricles_, (from a Latin word, signifying the ear,) the name given to
two appendages of the heart, from their fancied resemblance to the ear.

_Baglivi_, (George,) an eminent physician, who was born at Ragusa, in
1668, and was educated at Naples and Paris. Pope Clement XIV., on the
ground of his great merit, appointed him, while a very young man,
Professor of Anatomy and Surgery in the College of Sapienza, at Rome. He
wrote several works, and did much to promote the cause of medical
science. He died, A. D. 1706.

_Bass_, or bass wood, a large forest tree of America, sometimes called
the lime-tree. The wood is white and soft, and the bark is sometimes
used for bandages, as mentioned in page 343.

_Beau Nash_, see _Nash_.

_Bell, Sir Charles_, a celebrated surgeon, who was born in Edinburgh, in
the year 1778. He commenced his career in London, in 1806, as a lecturer
on Anatomy and Surgery. In 1830, he received the honors of knighthood,
and in 1836 was appointed Professor of Surgery in the College of
Edinburgh. He died near Worcester, in England, April 29, 1842. His
writings are very numerous, and have been much celebrated. Among the
most important of these, to general readers, are, his Illustrations of
Paley's Natural Theology, (which work forms the second and third volumes
of the larger series of 'THE SCHOOL LIBRARY,' issued by the
Publishers of this volume,) and his treatise on 'The Hand, its
Mechanism, and Vital Endowments, as evincing Design.'

_Bergamot_, a fruit, which was originally produced by ingrafting a
branch of a citron or lemon tree, upon the stock of a peculiar kind of
pear, called the bergamot pear.

_Biased_, cut diagonally from one corner to another of a square or
rectangular piece of cloth. _Bias pieces_, triangular pieces cut as
above mentioned.

_Bituminous_, containing _bitumen_, which is an inflammable mineral
substance, resembling tar or pitch in its properties and uses. Among
different bituminous substances, the names _naphtha_ and _petroleum_
have been given to those which are fluid; _maltha_, to that which has
the consistence of pitch; and _asphaltum_, to that which is solid.

_Blight_, a disease in plants, by which they are blasted, or prevented
from producing fruit.

_Blond lace_, lace made of silk.

_Blood heat_, the temperature which the blood is always found to
maintain, or ninety-eight degrees of Fahrenheit's thermometer.

_Blue vitriol_, sulphate of copper. See _Sulphate_.

_Blunts_, needles of a short and thick shape, distinguished from
_Sharps_, which are long and slender.

_Bocking_, a kind of thin carpeting, or coarse baize.

_Boston Academy_, see _Academy_.

_Botany_, (from a Greek word, signifying an herb,) a knowledge of
plants; the science which treats of plants.

_Brazil wood_, the central part, or heart, of a large tree which grows
in Brazil, called the _Cæsalpinia echinata_. It produces very lively and
beautiful red tints, but they are not permanent.

_Bronze_, a metallic composition, consisting of copper and tin.

_Brûlure_, a French term, denoting a burning or scalding; a blasting of

_Brussels_, (carpet,) a kind of carpeting, so called from the city of
Brussels, in Europe. Its basis is composed of a warp and woof of strong
linen threads, with the warp of which are intermixed about five times
the quantity of woollen threads, of different colors.

_Bulb_, a root with a round body, like the onion, turnip, or hyacinth.
_Bulbous_, having a bulb.

_Byron_, (George Gordon,) _Lord_, a celebrated Poet, who was born in
London, January 22, 1788, and died in Missolonghi, in Greece, April 18,

_Calisthenics_, see page 56, note.

_Camwood_, a dyewood, procured from a leguminous (or pod-bearing) tree,
growing on the Western Coast of Africa, and called _Baphia nitida_.

_Cankerworm_, a worm which is very destructive to trees and plants. It
springs from an egg deposited by a miller that issues from the ground,
and in some years destroys the leaves and fruit of apple and other

_Carbon_, a simple inflammable body, forming the principal part of wood
and coal, and the whole of the diamond.

_Carbonic acid_, a compound gas, consisting of carbon and oxygen. It has
lately been obtained in a solid form.

_Carmine_, a crimson color, the most beautiful of all the reds. It is
prepared from a decoction of the powdered cochineal insect, to which
alum and other substances are added.

_Caster_, a small phial or vessel for the table, in which to put
vinegar, mustard, pepper, &c.

_Chancellor of the Exchequer_, the highest judge of the law; the
principal financial minister of a government, and the one who manages
its revenue.

_Chateau_, a castle, a mansion.

_Chemistry_, the science which treats of the elementary constituents of

_Chinese belle_, deformities of. In China, it is the fashion to compress
the feet of female infants, to prevent their growth; in consequence of
which, the feet of all the females of China are distorted, and so small,
that the individuals cannot walk with ease.

_Chloride_, a compound of chlorine and some other substance. _Chlorine_
is a simple substance, formerly called oxymuriatic acid. In its pure
state, it is a gas, of green color, (hence its name, from a Greek word,
signifying green.) Like oxygen, it supports the combustion of some
inflammable substances. _Chloride of lime_ is a compound of chlorine and

_Cholera infantum_, a bowel complaint, to which infants are subject.

_Chyle_, a white juice, formed from the chyme, and consisting of the
finer and more nutritious parts of the food. It is afterwards converted
into blood.

_Chyme_, the result of the first process which food undergoes in the
stomach, previously to its being converted into chyle.

_Cicuta_, the common American Hemlock, an annual plant of four or five
feet in height, and found commonly along walls and fences, and about old
ruins and buildings. It is a virulent poison, as well as one of the most
important and valuable medicinal vegetables. It is a very different
plant from the Hemlock tree, or _Pinus Canadensis_.

_Clarke_, (Sir Charles Mansfield,) _Dr._, a distinguished English
physician and surgeon, who was born in London, May 28, 1782. He was
appointed Physician to Queen Adelaide, wife of King William IV., in
1830, and in 1831, he was created a baronet. He is the author of several
valuable medical works.

_Cobalt_, a brittle metal, of a reddish-gray color and weak metallic
lustre, used in coloring glass. It is not easily melted nor oxidized in
the air.

_Cochineal_, a color procured from the cochineal insect, (or _Coccus
cacti_,) which feeds upon the leaves of several species of the plant
called cactus, and which is supposed to derive its coloring matter from
its food. Its natural color is crimson; but by the addition of a
preparation of potash, it yields a rich scarlet dye.

_Cologne water_, a fragrant perfume, which derives its name from having
been originally made in the city of Cologne, which is situated on the
River Rhine, in Germany. The best kind is still procured from that city.

_Comparative anatomy_, the science which has for its object a comparison
of the anatomy, structure, and functions, of the various organs of
animals, plants, &c., with those of the human body.

_Confection_, a sweetmeat; a preparation of fruit with sugar; also a
preparation of medicine with honey, sirup, or similar saccharine
substance, for the purpose of disguising the unpleasant taste of the

_Cooper, Sir Astley Paston_, a celebrated English surgeon, who was born
at Brooke, in Norfolk county, England, August 23, 1768, and commenced
the practice of Surgery in London, in 1792. He was appointed Surgeon to
King George IV., in 1827, was created a baronet in 1821, and died
February 12, 1841. He was the author of many valuable works.

_Copal_, a hard, shining, transparent resin, of a light citron color,
brought, originally, from Spanish America, and now almost wholly from
the East Indies. It is principally employed in the preparation of _copal

_Copper, sulphate of_, see _Sulphate of copper_.

_Copperas_, (sulphate of iron, or green vitriol,) a bright green mineral
substance, formed by the decomposition of a peculiar ore of iron, called
pyrites, which is a sulphuret of iron. It is first in the form of a
greenish-white powder, or crust, which is dissolved in water, and
beautiful green crystals of copperas are obtained by evaporation. It is
principally used in dyeing, and in making black ink. Its solution, mixed
with a decoction of oak bark, produces a black color.

_Coronary_, relating to a crown or garland. In anatomy, it is applied to
arteries which encompass the heart, in the manner, as it is fancied, of
a garland.

_Corrosive sublimate_, a poisonous substance, composed of chlorine and

_Cosmetics_, preparations which some people foolishly think will
preserve and beautify the skin.

_Cream of tartar_, see _Tartar_.

_Crimping-iron_, an instrument for crimping or curling ruffles, &c.

_Curculio_, a weevil or worm, which affects the fruit of the plum tree,
and sometimes that of the apple tree, causing the unripe fruit to fall
to the ground.

_Curvature of the spine_, see pages 80, 81.

_Cuvier, Baron_, the most eminent naturalist of the present age, was
born, A. D. 1769, and died, A. D. 1832. He was Professor of Natural
History in the College of France, and held various important posts under
the French Government, at different times. His works on Natural History
are of the greatest value.

_Cynosure_, the star near the North Pole, by which sailors steer. It is
used, in a figurative sense, as synonymous with _pole-star_, or _guide_.

_De Tocqueville_, see _Tocqueville_.

_Diamond cement_, a cement sold in the shops, and used for mending
broken glass, and similar articles.

_Drab_, a thick woollen cloth, of a light brown or dun color. The name
is sometimes used for the color itself.

_Dredging-box_, a box with holes in the top, used to sift or scatter
flour on meat, when roasting.

_Drill_, (in husbandry,) to sow grain in rows, drills, or channels; the
row of grain so sowed.

_Duchess of Orleans_, see _Orleans_.

The _East_, and the _Eastern States_, those of the United States
situated in the north-east part of the Country, including Maine, New
Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Vermont.

_Electuary_, a mixture, consisting of medicinal substances, especially
dry powders, combined with honey or sirup, in order to render them less
unpleasant to the taste, and more convenient for internal use.

_Elevation_, (of a house,) a plan, representing the upright view of a
house, as a ground-plan shows its appearance on the ground.

_Euclid_, a celebrated mathematician, who was born in Alexandria, in
Egypt, about two hundred and eighty years before Christ. He
distinguished himself by his writings on music and geometry. The most
celebrated of his works, is his 'Elements of Geometry,' which is in use
at the present day. He established a school at Alexandria, which became
so famous, that, from his time to the conquest of Alexandria by the
Saracens, (A. D. 646,) no mathematician was found, who had not studied
at Alexandria. Ptolemy, King of Egypt, was one of his pupils; and it was
to a question of this King, whether there were not a shorter way of
coming at Geometry, than by the study of his Elements, that Euclid made
the celebrated answer, "There is no royal way, or path, to Geometry."

_Equator_, or _equinoctial line_, an imaginary line passing round the
earth, from east to west, and directly under the sun, which always
shines nearly perpendicularly down upon all countries situated near the

_Evolve_, to throw off, to discharge.

_Exchequer_, a court in England, in which the Chancellor presides, and
where the revenues of, and debts due to, the King are recovered. This
court was originally established by King William, (called 'the
Conqueror,') who died A. D. 1087; and its name is derived from a
checkered cloth, (French _echiquier_, a chess-board, checker-work,) on
the table.

_Excretion_, something discharged from the body, a separation of animal

_Excrementitious_, consisting of matter excreted from the body;
containing excrements.

_Fahrenheit_, (Gabriel Daniel,) a celebrated natural philosopher, who
was born at Dantzic, A. D. 1686. He made great improvements in the
thermometer; and his name is sometimes used for that instrument.

_Farinaceous_, mealy, tasting like meal.

To _Fell_, to turn down, on the wrong side, the raw edges of a seam,
after it has been stitched, run, or sewed, and then to hem or sew it to
the cloth.

_Festivals_, of the Jews, the three great annual. These were, the Feast
of the Passover, that of Pentecost, and that of Tabernacles; on occasion
of which, all the males of the Nation were required to visit the Temple
at Jerusalem, in whatever part of the Country they might reside. See
Exodus xxiii. 14, 17, xxxiv. 23, Leviticus xxiii. 4, Deuteronomy xvi.
16. The Passover was kept in commemoration of the deliverance of the
Israelites from Egypt, and was so named, because, the night before their
departure, the destroying angel, who slew all the first-born of the
Egyptians, _passed over_ the houses of the Israelites, without entering
them. See Exodus xii. The Feast of Pentecost was so called, from a word
meaning _the fiftieth_, because it was celebrated on the fiftieth day
after the Passover, and was instituted in commemoration of the giving of
the Law from Mount Sinai, on the fiftieth day from the departure out of
Egypt. It is also called the Feast of Weeks, because it was kept seven
weeks after the Passover. See Exodus xxxiv. 22, Leviticus xxiii. 15-21,
Deuteronomy xvi. 9, 10. The Feast of Tabernacles, or Feast of Tents, was
so called, because it was celebrated under tents or tabernacles of green
boughs; and was designed to commemorate their dwelling in tents, during
their passage through the wilderness. At this Feast, they also returned
thanks to God, for the fruits of the earth, after they had been
gathered. See Exodus xxiii. 16, Leviticus xxiii. 34-44, Deuteronomy xvi.
13, and also St. John vii. 2.

_Fire blight_, a disease in the pear, and some other fruit trees, in
which they appear burnt, as if by fire. It is supposed, by some, to be
caused by an insect, others suppose it to be caused by an overabundance
of sap.

_Fluting-iron_, an instrument for making flutes, channels, furrows, or
hollows, in ruffles, &c.

_Foundation muslin_, a nice kind of buckram, stiff and white, used for
the foundation or basis of bonnets, &c.

_Free States_, those States in which slavery is not allowed, as
distinguished from Slave States, in which slavery does exist.

_French chalk_, a variety of the mineral called talc, unctuous to the
touch, of a greenish color, glossy, soft, and easily scratched, and
leaving a silvery line, when drawn on paper. It is used for marking on
cloth, and extracting grease-spots.

_Fuller's earth_, a species of clay, remarkable for its property of
absorbing oil; for which reason it is valuable for extracting grease
from cloth, &c. It is used by fullers, in scouring and cleansing cloth,
whence its name.

_Fustic_, the wood of a tree which grows in the West Indies, called
_Morus tinctoria_. It affords a durable, but not very brilliant, yellow
dye, and is also used in producing some greens and drab colors.

_Gastric_, (from the Greek [Greek: gastir], _gaster_, the belly,)
belonging or relating to the belly, or stomach. _Gastric juice_, the
fluid which dissolves the food in the stomach. It is limpid, like water,
of a saltish taste, and without odor.

_Geology_, the science which treats of the earth, as composed of rocks
and stones.

_Gore_, a triangular piece of cloth. _Goring_, cut in a triangular

_Gothic_, a peculiar and strongly-marked style of architecture,
sometimes called the ecclesiastical style, because it is most frequently
used in cathedrals, churches, abbeys, and other religious edifices. Its
principle seems to have originated in the imitation of groves and
bowers, under which the ancients performed their sacred rites; its
clustered pillars and pointed arches very well representing the trunks
of trees and their interlocking branches.

_Gourmand_, or _Gormand_, a glutton, a greedy eater. In agriculture, it
is applied to twigs which take up the sap, but bear only leaves.

_Green vitriol_, see _Copperas_.

_Griddle_, an iron pan, of a peculiarly broad and shallow construction,
used for baking cakes.

_Ground-plan_, the map or plan of the lower floor of any building, in
which the various apartments, windows, doors, fireplaces, and other
things, are represented, like the rivers, towns, mountains, roads, &c.,
on a map.

_Gum Arabic_, a vegetable juice which exudes through the bark of the
_Acacia_, _Mimosa nilotica_, and some other similar trees, growing in
Arabia, Egypt, Senegal, and Central Africa. It is the purest of all

_Hardpan_, the hard, unbroken layer of earth, below the mould or
cultivated soil.

_Hartshorn_, (spirits of,) a volatile alkali, originally prepared from
the horns of the stag or hart, but now procured from various other
substances. It is known by the name of ammonia, or spirits of ammonia.

_Hemlock_, see _Cicuta_.

_Horticulturist_, one skilled in horticulture, or the art of cultivating
gardens; horticulture being to the garden, what agriculture is to the
farm, the application of labor and science to a limited spot, for
convenience, for profit, or for ornament,--though implying a higher
state of cultivation, than is common in agriculture. It includes the
cultivation of culinary vegetables and of fruits, and forcing or exotic
gardening, as far as respects useful products.

_Hoskin's gloves_, gloves made by a person named Hoskin, whose
manufacture was formerly much celebrated.

_Hydrogen_, a very light, inflammable gas, of which water is, in part,
composed. It is used to inflate balloons.

_Hypochondriasis_, melancholy, dejection, a disorder of the imagination,
in which the person supposes he is afflicted with various diseases.

_Hysteria_, or _hysterics_, a spasmodic, convulsive affection of the
nerves, to which women are subject. It is somewhat similar to
hypochondriasis in men.

_Ingrain_, a kind of carpeting, in which the threads are dyed in the
grain, or raw material, before manufacture.

_Ipecac_, (an abbreviation of _ipecacuanha_,) an Indian medicinal plant,
acting as an emetic.

_Isinglass_, a fine kind of gelatin, or glue, prepared from the
swimming-bladders of fishes, used as a cement, and also as an ingredient
in food and medicine. The name is sometimes applied to a transparent
mineral substance called mica.

_Kamtschadales_, inhabitants of _Kamtschatka_, a large peninsula
situated on the northeastern coast of Asia, having the North Pacific
Ocean on the east. It is remarkable for its extreme cold, which is
heightened by a range of very lofty mountains, extending the whole
length of the peninsula, several of which are volcanic. It is very
deficient in vegetable productions, but produces a great variety of
animals, from which the richest and most valuable furs are procured. The
inhabitants are in general below the common height, but have broad
shoulders and large heads. It is under the dominion of Russia.

_Kink_, a knotty twist in a thread or rope.

_Lapland_, a country at the extreme north part of Europe, where it is
very cold. It contains lofty mountains, some of which are covered with
perpetual snow and ice.

_Latin_, the language of the Latins, or inhabitants of Latium, the
principal country of ancient Italy. After the building of Rome, that
city became the capital of the whole country.

_Leguminous_, pod-bearing.

_Lent_, a fast of the Christian Church, (lasting forty days, from Ash
Wednesday to Easter,) in commemoration of our Saviour's miraculous fast
of forty days and forty nights, in the wilderness. The word Lent means
spring; this fast always occurring at that season of the year.

_Levite_, one of the tribe of Levi, the son of Jacob, which tribe was
set apart from the others, to minister in the services of the
Tabernacle, and the Temple at Jerusalem. The Priests were taken from
this tribe. See Numbers i. 47-53.

_Ley_, water which has percolated through ashes, earth, or other
substances, dissolving and imbibing a part of their contents. It is
generally spelled _lie_, or _lye_.

_Linnæus_, (Charles,) a native of Sweden, and the most celebrated
naturalist of his age. He was born May 13, 1707, and died January 11,
1778. His life was devoted to the study of natural history. The science
of botany, in particular, is greatly indebted to his labors. His
'_Amoenitates Academicæ_' (Academical Recreations) is a collection of
the dissertations of his pupils, edited by himself; a work rich in
matters relating to the history and habits of plants. He was the first
who arranged Natural History into a regular system, which has been
generally called by his name. His proper name was Linné.

_Lobe_, a division, a distinct part; generally applied to the two
divisions of the lungs.

_Log Cabin_, a cabin or house built of logs, as is generally the case in
newly-settled countries.

_Loire_, the largest river of France, being about five hundred and fifty
miles in length. It rises in the mountains of Cevennes, and empties into
the Atlantic Ocean, about forty miles below the city of Nantes. It
divides France into two almost equal parts.

_London Medical Society_, a distinguished association, formed in 1773.
It has published some valuable volumes of its Transactions. It has a
library, of about 40,000 volumes, which is kept in a house presented to
the Society, in 1788, by the celebrated Dr. Lettsom, who was one of its
first members.

_Louis XIV._, a celebrated King of France and Navarre, who was born
Sept. 5, 1638, and died Sept. 1, 1715. His mother having before had no
children, though she had been married twenty-two years, his birth was
considered as a particular favor from heaven, and he was called the
'Gift of God.' He is sometimes styled 'Louis the Great,' and his reign
is celebrated as an era of magnificence and learning, and is notorious
as a period of licentiousness. He left behind him monuments of
unprecedented splendor and expense, consisting of palaces, gardens, and
other like works.

_Lumbar_, (from the Latin _lumbus_, the loin,) relating or pertaining to
the loins.

_Lunacy, writ of_, a judicial proceeding, to ascertain whether a person
be a lunatic.

_Mademoiselle_, the French word for Miss, a young girl.

_Magnesia_, a light and white alkaline earth, which enters into the
composition of many rocks, communicating to them a greasy or soapy
feeling, and a striped texture, with sometimes a greenish color.

_Malaria_, (Italian, _mal'aria, bad air_,) a noxious vapor or
exhalation; a state of the atmosphere or soil, or both, which, in
certain regions, and in warm weather, produces fever, sometimes of great

_Mammon_, riches, the Syrian god of riches. See St. Luke, xvi. 11, 13,
St. Matthew, vi. 24.

_Martineau_, (Harriet,) a woman who has become somewhat celebrated by
her book of travels in the United States, and by other works.

_Mexico_, a country situated southwest of the United States, and
extending to the Pacific Ocean.

_Miasms_, such particles or atoms, as are supposed to arise from
distempered, putrefying, or poisonous bodies.

_Michilimackinac_, or _Mackinac_, (now frequently corrupted into
_Mackinaw_, which is the usual pronunciation of the name,) a military
post in the State of Michigan, situated upon an island about nine miles
in circuit, in the strait which connects Lakes Michigan and Huron. It is
much resorted to by Indians and fur traders. The highest summit of the
island is about three hundred feet above the lakes, and commands an
extensive view of them.

_Midsummer_, with us, the time when the sun arrives at his greatest
distance from the equator, or about the twenty-first of June, called,
also, the summer solstice, (from the Latin _sol_, _the sun_, and _sto_,
_to stop_ or _stand still_,) because, when the sun reaches this point,
he seems to stand still for some time, and then appears to retrace his
steps. The days are then longer than at any other time.

_Migrate_, to remove from one place to another; to change residence.

_Mildew_, a disease of plants; a mould, spot, or stain, in paper,
cloths, &c., caused by moisture.

_Militate_, to oppose, to operate against.

_Millinet_, a coarse kind of stiff muslin, formerly used for the
foundation or basis of bonnets, &c.

_Mineralogy_, a science which treats of the inorganic natural substances
found upon or in the earth, such as earths, salts, metals, &c., and
which are called by the general name of minerals.

_Minutiæ_, the smallest particulars.

_Monasticism_, monastic life; religiously recluse life, in a monastery,
or house of religious retirement.

_Montagu, Lady Mary Wortley_, one of the most celebrated among the
female literary characters of England. She was daughter of Evelyn, Duke
of Kingston, and was born about 1690, at Thoresby, in England. She
displayed uncommon abilities, at a very early age, and was educated by
the best masters in the English, Latin, Greek, and French, languages.
She accompanied her husband (Edward Wortley Montagu) on an embassy to
Constantinople, and her correspondence with her friends was published
and much admired. She introduced the practice of inoculation for the
smallpox into England, which proved of great benefit to millions. She
died at the age of seventy-two, A. D. 1762.

_Moral Philosophy_, the science which treats of the motives and rules of
human actions, and of the ends to which they ought to be directed.

_Moreen_, a kind of woollen stuff used for curtains, covers of cushions,
bed hangings, &c.

_Mucous_, having the nature of _mucus_, a glutinous, sticky, thready,
transparent fluid, of a salt savor, produced by different membranes of
the body, and serving to protect the membranes and other internal parts
against the action of the air, food, &c. The fluid of the mouth and nose
is mucus.

_Mucous membrane_, that membrane which lines the mouth, nose,
intestines, and other open cavities of the body.

_Muriatic acid_, an acid, composed of chlorine and hydrogen, called,
also, hydrochloric acid, and spirit of salt.

_Mush-stick_, a stick to use in stirring _mush_, which is corn meal
boiled in water.

_Nankeen_, or _Nankin_, a light cotton cloth, originally brought from
Nankin, in China, whence its name.

_Nash_, (Richard,) commonly called _Beau Nash_, or King of Bath, a
celebrated leader of the fashions in England. He was born at Swansea, in
South Wales, October 8, 1674, and died in the city of Bath, (England,)
February 3, 1761.

_Natural History_, the history of animals, plants, and minerals.

_Natural Philosophy_, the science which treats of the powers of Nature,
the properties of natural bodies, and their action one upon another. It
is sometimes called _physics_.

_New-milch cow_, a cow which has recently calved.

_Newton_, (Sir Isaac,) an eminent English philosopher and mathematician,
who was born on Christmas day, 1642, and died March 20, 1727. He was
much distinguished for his very important discoveries in Optics and
other branches of Natural Philosophy. See the first volume of 'Pursuit
of Knowledge under Difficulties,' forming the fourteenth volume of
'THE SCHOOL LIBRARY,' Larger Series.

_Non-bearers_, plants which bear no flowers nor fruit.

_Northern States_, those of the United States situated in the Northern
and Eastern part of the Country.

_Ordinary_, see _Physician in Ordinary_.

_Oil of Vitriol_, (sulphuric acid, or vitriolic acid,) an acid composed
of oxygen and sulphur.

_Orleans_, (Elizabeth Charlotte de Bavière,) _Duchess of_, second wife
of Philippe, the brother of Louis XIV., was born at Heidelberg, May 26,
1652, and died at the palace of St. Cloud, in Paris, December 8, 1722.
She was author of several works; among which were, Memoirs, and
Anecdotes, of the Court of Louis XIV.

_Ottoman_, a kind of hassock, or thick mat, for kneeling upon; so
called, from being used by the Ottomans or Turks.

_Oxalic acid_, a vegetable acid, which exists in sorrel.

_Oxide_, a compound (which is not acid) of a substance with oxygen; for
example, oxide of iron, or rust of metals.

_Oxidize_, to combine oxygen with a body without producing acidity.

_Oxygen_, vital air, a simple and very important substance, which exists
in the atmosphere, and supports the breathing of animals and the burning
of combustibles. It was called oxygen, from two Greek words, signifying
to produce acid, from its power of giving acidity to many compounds in
which it predominates.

_Oxygenized_, combined with oxygen.

_Pancreas_, a gland within the abdomen, just below and behind the
stomach, and providing a fluid to assist digestion. In animals, it is
called the sweet-bread. _Pancreatic_, belonging to the pancreas.

_Parterre_, a level division of ground, a flower garden.

_Pearlash_, the common name for impure carbonate of potash, which, in a
purer form, is called _Sal æratus_.

_Peristaltic_, worm-like.

_Philosophy_, see _Intellectual_, _Moral_, and _Natural_.

_Physician in Ordinary to the Queen_, the Physician who attends the
Queen in ordinary cases of illness.

_Pistil_, that part of a flower, generally in the centre, composed of
the germ, style, and stigma, which receives the pollen or fertilizing
dust of the stamens.

_Pitt, William_, a celebrated English statesman, son of the Earl of
Chatham. He was born, May 28, 1759, and at the age of twenty-three, was
made Chancellor of the Exchequer, and soon afterward, Prime Minister. He
died, January 23, 1806.

_Political Economy_, the science which treats of the general causes
affecting the production, distribution, and consumption, of articles of
exchangeable value, in reference to their effects upon national wealth
and welfare.

_Pollen_, the fertilizing dust of flowers, produced by the stamens, and
falling upon the pistils, in order to render a flower capable of
producing fruit or seed.

_Potter's clay_, the clay used in making articles of pottery.

_Prairie_, a French word, signifying _meadow_. In the United States, it
is applied to the remarkable natural meadows, or plains, which are found
in the Western States. In some of these vast and nearly level plains,
the traveller may wander for days, without meeting with wood or water,
and see no object rising above the plane of the horizon. They are very

_Prime Minister_, the person appointed by the ruler of a nation to have
the chief direction and management of the public affairs.

_Process_, a protuberance, or projecting part of a bone.

_Pulmonary_, belonging to, or affecting, the lungs. _Pulmonary artery_,
an artery which passes through the lungs, being divided into several
branches, which form a beautiful network over the air-vessels, and
finally empty themselves into the left auricle of the heart.

_Puritans_, a sect, which professed to follow the pure word of God, in
opposition to traditions, human constitutions, and other authorities. In
the reign of Queen Elizabeth, part of the Protestants were desirous of
introducing a simpler, and, as they considered it, a _purer_, form of
church government and worship, than that established by law; from which
circumstance, they were called _Puritans_. In process of time, this
party increased in numbers, and openly broke off from the Church, laying
aside the English liturgy, and adopting a service-book published at
Geneva, by the disciples of Calvin. They were treated with great rigor
by the Government, and many of them left the kingdom and settled in
Holland. Finding themselves not so eligibly situated in that Country, as
they had expected to be, a portion of them embarked for America, and
were the first settlers of New England.

_Quixotic_, absurd, romantic, ridiculous; from _Don Quixote_, the hero
of a celebrated fictitious work, written by Cervantes, a distinguished
Spanish writer, and intended to reform the tastes and opinions of his

_Reeking_, smoking, emitting vapor.

_Residuum_, the remainder, or part which remains.

_Routine_, a round, or course of engagements, business, pleasure, &c.

To _Run_ a seam, to lay the two edges of a seam together, and pass the
threaded needle out and in, with small stitches, a few threads below the
edge, and on a line with it.

To _Run_ a stocking, to pass a thread of yarn, with a needle, straight
along each row of the stocking, as far as is desired, taking up one loop
and missing two or three, until the row is completed, so as to double
the thickness at the part which is run.

_Sabbatical year_, every seventh year, among the Jews, which was a year
of rest for the land, when it was to be left without culture. In this
year, all debts were to be remitted, and slaves set at liberty. See
Exodus xxi. 2, xxiii. 10, Leviticus xxv. 2, 3, &c., Deuteronomy xv. 12,
and other similar passages.

_Sal æratus_, see _Pearlash_.

_Sal ammoniac_, a salt, called also muriate of ammonia, which derives
its name from a district in Libya, Egypt, where there was a temple of
Jupiter Ammon, and where this salt was found.

_Scotch Highlanders_, inhabitants of the Highlands of Scotland.

_Selvedge_, the edge of cloth, a border. Improperly written _selvage_.

_Service-book_, a book prescribing the order of public services in a
church or congregation.

_Sharps_, see _Blunts_.

_Shorts_, the coarser part of wheat bran.

_Shrubbery_, a plantation of shrubs.

_Siberia_, a large country in the extreme northern part of Asia, having
the Frozen Ocean on the north, and the Pacific Ocean on the east, and
forming a part of the Russian empire. The northern part is extremely
cold, almost uncultivated, and contains but few inhabitants. It
furnishes fine skins, and some of the most valuable furs in the world.
It also contains rich mines of iron and copper, and several kinds of
precious stones.

_Sinclair, Sir John_, of whom it was said, "There is no greater name in
the annals of agriculture, than his," was born in Caithness, Scotland,
May 10, 1754, and became a member of the British Parliament in 1780. He
was strongly opposed to the measures of the British Government towards
America, which produced the American Revolution. He was author of many
valuable publications, on various subjects. He died December 21, 1835.

_Sirloin_, the loin of beef. The appellation 'Sir' is the title of a
knight, or baronet; and has been added to the word 'loin,' when applied
to beef, because a King of England, in a freak of good humor, once
conferred the honor of knighthood upon a loin of beef.

_Slack_, to loosen, to relax, to deprive of cohesion.

_Soda_, an alkali, usually obtained from the ashes of marine plants.

To _Spade_, to throw out earth with a spade.

_Spermaceti_, an oily substance, found in the head of a species of
whale, called the spermaceti whale.

_Spindling_, see page 124.

_Spinous process_, a process or bony protuberance, resembling a spine or
thorn, whence it derives its name.

_Spool_, a piece of cane or reed, or a hollow cylinder of wood, with a
ridge at each end, used to wind yarn and thread upon.

_Stamen_, (plural _stamens_ and _stamina_,) in _weaving_, the warp, the
thread, any thing made of threads. In _botany_, that part of a flower,
on which the artificial classification is founded, consisting of the
filament or stalk, and the anther, which contains the pollen, or
fructifying powder.

_Stigma_, (plural _stigmas_ and _stigmata_,) the summit or top of the
pistil of a flower.

_Style_, or _Stile_, the part of the pistil between the germ and the

_Sub-carbonate_, an imperfect carbonate.

_Sulphates_, _Sulphats_, _Sulphites_, salts formed by the combination of
some base with sulphuric acid, as _Sulphate of copper_, (blue vitriol,
or blue stone,) a combination of sulphuric acid with copper. _Sulphate
of iron_, copperas, or green vitriol. _Sulphate of lime_, gypsum, or
plaster of Paris. _Sulphate of magnesia_, Epsom salts. _Sulphate of
potash_, a chemical salt, composed of sulphuric acid and potash.
_Sulphate of soda_, Glauber's salts. _Sulphate of zinc_, white vitriol.

_Sulphuret_, a combination of an alkaline earth or metal with sulphur
as, _Sulphuret of iron_, a combination of iron and sulphur.

_Sulphuric acid_, oil of vitriol, vitriolic acid.

_Suture_, a sewing; the uniting of parts by stitching; the seam or joint
which unites the flat bones of the skull, which are notched like the
teeth of a saw, and the notches, being united together, present the
appearance of a seam.

_Tartar_, a substance, deposited on the inside of wine casks, consisting
chiefly of tartaric acid and potash. _Cream of tartar_, the crude tartar
separated from all its impurities, by being dissolved in water and then
crystallized, when it becomes a perfectly white powder.

_Tartaric acid_, a vegetable acid which exists in the grape.

_Technology_, a description of the arts, considered generally, in their
theory and practice, as connected with moral, political, and physical

_Three great Jewish yearly festivals_, see _Festivals_.

_Three-ply_, or triple ingrain, a kind of carpeting, in which the
threads are woven in such a manner as to make three thicknesses of the

_Tic douloureux_, a painful affection of the nerves, mostly those of the

_Tocqueville_, (Alexis de,) a celebrated living statesman and writer of
France, and author of volumes on the Political Condition, and the
Penitentiaries, of the United States, and other works.

_Trachea_, the windpipe, so named (from a Greek word signifying _rough_)
from the roughness, or inequalities, of the cartilages of which it is

_Truckle-bed_, or _trundle-bed_, a bed that runs on wheels.

_Tuber_, a solid, fleshy, roundish root, like the potato. _Tuberous_,
thick and fleshy; composed of, or having, tubers.

_Tucks_, (improperly tacks,) folds in garments.

_Turmeric_, the root of a plant called _Curcuma longa_, a native of the
East Indies, used as a yellow dye.

_Twaddle_, idle, foolish talk, or conversation.

_Unbolted_, unsifted.

_Unslacked_, not loosened, or deprived of cohesion. Lime, when it has
been slacked, crumbles to powder, from being deprived of cohesion.

_Valance_, the drapery or fringe hanging round the cover of a bed,
couch, or other similar article.

_Vascular_, relating to, or full of, vessels.

_Venetian_, a kind of carpeting, composed of a striped woollen warp on a
thick woof of linen thread.

_Verisimilitude_, probability, resemblance to truth.

_Verbatim_, word for word.

_Vice versa_, the side being changed, or the question reversed, or the
terms being exchanged.

_Viscera_, (plural of _viscus_,) organs contained in the abdomen and in
the chest.

_Vitriol_, a compound mineral salt, of a very caustic taste. _Blue
vitriol_, sulphate of copper. _Green vitriol_, see _Copperas_. _Oil of
vitriol_, sulphuric acid. _White vitriol_, sulphate of zinc.

_Waffle-iron_, an iron utensil for the purpose of baking waffles, which
are thin and soft cakes indented by the iron in which they are baked.

_Washleather_, a soft, pliable leather, dressed with oil, and in such a
way, that it may be washed, without shrinking. It is used for various
articles of dress, as under-shirts, drawers, &c., and also for rubbing
silver, and other articles having a high polish. The article known, in
commerce, as chamois, or shammy, leather, is also called wash-leather.

_Welting cord_, a cord sewed into the welt or border of a garment.

The _West_, or _Western World_. When used in Europe, or in distinction
from the Eastern World, it means America. When used in this Country, the
West refers to the Western States of the Union. _Western Wilds_, the
wild, thinly-settled lands of the Western States.

_White vitriol_, see _Zinc_.

_Wilton carpet_, a kind of carpets, made in England, and so called from
the place which is the chief seat of their manufacture. They are woollen
velvets, with variegated colors.

_Writ of lunacy_, see _Lunacy_.

_Xantippe_, the wife of Socrates, noted for her violent temper and
scolding propensities. The name is frequently applied to a shrew, or
peevish, turbulent, scolding woman.

_Zinc_, a blueish-white metal, which is used as a constituent of brass,
and some other alloys. _Sulphate of zinc_, or _White vitriol_, a
combination of zinc with sulphuric acid.



Absorbents of the skin, 93, 119.

Accidents and antidotes, 240.

Accounts, 174, 186.
  By girls, 188.

Acids, 319.

Africans, diet of, 221.

Air, evils of the want of pure, 91, 129, 196, 311.
  Exercise in the, 129, 133.
  For infants, 217, 218.
  Of sick-rooms, 237.
  Dancing in the, 246.
  _See_ Ventilation.

Albany Orphan Asylum, 222.

Alcoholic drinks, 107.
  _See_ Stimulating.

Alton, account of the Monticello Female Seminary at, 54.

Amaryllis, 335.

America, anticipations as to, 36.
  Conspicuous station of, 36.
  Changeableness in the conditions in, 40, 46, 48, 257.
  Labor in, 147.

American women, peculiar responsibilities of, 25.
  Rights and privileges of, 27.
  Their distinct line of duty, 28, 32, 33.
  Influence of, on America, 32, 33.
  Their equality, 33.
  Fancied wrongs of, 33.
  Part to be acted by, 36.
  Influence of, in the world, 37, 38.
  Difficulties peculiar to, 38;
    as housekeepers, 39, 151, 204;
    from delicacy of constitution, 41, 45, 47, 128.
  Few perfectly healthy, 43.
  Causes of unhealthy, 43, 128;
    mental excitement, 43;
    their sense of their responsibilities, 44;
    too little outdoor exercise, 44.
  Bad early training of, 45.
  Exposures of, in newly-settled countries, 46.
  De Tocqueville describes, in the West, 46.
  In the East and in the West, compared, 47.
  Should oppose the feeling that labor is degrading, 61.
  Precedence given to, by the other sex, 141.
  Housekeeping by, 151.
  Time and money spent by, for the ornamental, 175.
  _See_ Daughters, Females, Mothers, _and_ Women.

Amusements, 244, 250.

Anemone, 335.

Anger, on silence in, 152.
  _See_ Temper, _and_ Tones.

Animal food, 99, 100.
  For young children, 220.
  Nourishment of, 221.
  _See_ Food.

Animals, cruelty to, in sport, 244, 246.

Annual flowers, 337.

Anthracite coal, 281.

Ants, red and black, 323.

Anxiety, a countenance of, 149.

Appetites, gratification of the, 159, 171, 172.
  Rule as to, 184.

Apple trees, preserving from insects, 350.

Apportionment of time, 157, 160, 181.
  By regular division of work, 162.
  Jewish, 181.

Aristocracy, English, 27, 123.
  The prejudice of, as to labor, 61, 123.
  Distinguishing mark of, 123.
  On aping the, 124.
  Courtesy of, limited, 139.
  Manners of democracy and, 146.
  On economy among the, 194.
  Domestics of, 205.

Arm, muscles of the, 74, 75.

Arsenic, poisoning from, 242.

Arteries, tying up, 240.

Associated charities, 178.

Association, in Illinois, for educating poor females, 59.
  For education at large, 203.

Astral lamps, 282.


Back-door accommodations, 276.

Baglivi, on health during Lent, 100.

Balls, 247, 248.

Bargains, on making, 190, 194.

Baskets, 321.
  For centre tables, 354.

Bath, on using the, 120.

Bathing infants, 217.
  _See_ Washing.

Bathing-rooms, 276.

Beating down prices, 190, 194.

Beaumont, Dr., experiments by, on the digestibility of food, 104, _note_.

Beauty, effect of exercise on, 132.

Bed-bugs, 323.

Bedrooms, care of, 311.

Beds and bedding, 114, 313, 329.
  Washing, 287.
  On making, 314.

Beef's-gall, uses of, 286, 289.
  To prepare, 292.

Bell, Sir Charles, on nerves, 129.

Benevolence, happiness of, 131.
  _See_ Charity.

Bile, 89.

Bituminous coal, 281.

Black ants, 323.

Black tea, 110.

Bleeding at the lungs, 243.

Blindness, guarding against, 217, 283.

Blisters, on dressing, 238.

Blood, details as to the circulation of the, 83.
  Effect of daylight on the, 124;
    of exercise, 132.
  Crowded to the brain, when one is excited, 195.
  When a cause of mental disease, 196.
  Stopping, 240, 243.
  When dancing, 246.
  _See_ Circulation.

Blood-vessels, 81.

Blows on the head, 241.

Boarding-houses, plan as to expenses of, 186.

Boarding schools, curvature of the spine common at, 41.
  _See_ Female seminaries.

Boards for ironing, 294.

Body, change and renovation of the, 91.
  Connection of mind and, 195.
  _See_ Mind.

Boldness in domestics, 209.

Bones, described, 69.

Books, on teaching domestic economy from, 65.

Bosom-boards, 294.

Boston, scientific and literary advantages in, 147.

Bowels, 235, 237, _note_.

Boys, small, made useful, 164.
  Domestic arts taught to, 164.
  _See_ Children.

Brain, excitement of the, 195.
  Over-action of the, 197.

Breakfast, 103.
  On late, 127.
  On the care of, and of dining-rooms, 306.

Broadcloths, cleansing, 289.

Broken limbs, 240.

Brown linens, washing, 288.

Bruises, 240.

Budding, hints on, 342.

Bulbs, 335.

Bulwer's novels, 234.

Burne, Dr., cited, 235.

Burns, treatment of, 241.

Buttonholes, 324.

Byron, Lord, 200, 201.


Cakes, keeping till meal time, 223.

Calicoes, washing, 286, 287.
  Ironing, 295.

Calisthenics, 56, 247.

Candles, 281.
  To make, 283.

Caps for infants, 217.

Carpets, hints as to, 302.

Carving, 310.

Castle building, 199.

Cathartics, 235, 237.

Catholics, health of, during Lent, 100.

Cellars, vegetables in dark, 124.
  On the care of, 322.

Chambers, care of, 311.
  Couches for, 312.
  Furniture for, 313.

Character, attention to, at school, 58.
  Dependence of happiness on, 169.
  Self-denying benevolence of Christ's, 169.

Charcoal, 242, 281.

Charity, 131.
  On giving in, 158.
  Difficulty respecting, 167.
  General principles respecting, 168.
  Objects for receiving, 176.
  For souls of men, 177.
  By furnishing the poor with means of earning support, 178.
  Associations for, 178.
  Indiscriminate bestowal of, 178.
  Benefit of tracts in distributing, 179.
  On judging of other people's, 180.
  Union of, with social enjoyments, 184.

Cheap articles, hints on, 190, 194.

Children, washing, 121, 122.
  Living in the dark, 124.
  Early retiring and rising of, 126.
  Cultivation of good manners in, 141, 142.
  Too great familiarity with, 143, 226.
  Should acknowledge acts of kindness, 143;
    ask leave to use others' articles, 143;
    avoid wounding others' feelings, 143.
  To be taught to keep silence, 145, 230.
  Do not surround with too many rules, 145.
  On making allowances for, 154.
  Waiting on, 163.
  On making useful, 163, 252.
  On paying, for services, 164, 230.
  On giving younger, to older, 165.
  Precocity in, 198.
  Eating too often, 223.
  To be guarded as to honesty, deceit, and running in debt, 232.
  Sharing fruits and flowers, 251.
  _See_ Boys, Female, Girls, _and_ Young children.

Chimneys, smoky, 352.

Christ's character, 169.

Christianity, principles of, identical with democratic, 25, 34.

Churches, ill-ventilated, 196.

Chyle, 89.
  Converted into arterial blood, 90.
  From animal and other food, 99.

Cincinnati, education in, 148.

Circulation, in the skin of infants, 113.
  Effect of cold on, 113, 118, 119.
  _See_ Blood.

Clark, Dr., on animal diet for very young children, 220.

Cleaning carpets, 303.

Cleanliness, on realizing the importance of, 118.
  Of the sick, 238.

Cleansing articles, 298.

Climbing plants, 339.

Closets, of conveniences, 162.
  Sliding, 278.
  For washing utensils, 285.
  In eating-rooms, 306.
  In kitchens, 322.

Clothing and clothes, 112.
  Deficiency of, 113, 129.
  Excess of, 114.
  Rule as to, 114.
  Flannel, 114, 115.
  Of men and women, compared, 115.
  Example of English women as to, 117.
  On changing, next to the body, 120.
  Girls buying their own, 188.
  On inconsistent, 189.
  On washing, 285.
  Ironing, 295.
  Whitening, 296.
  Cleansing, 298.
  Coloring, 300.
  _See_ Dress, _and_ Tight dressing.

Coal, 281.

Coats, on folding, 315.

Cobalt, poisoning from, 242.

Cockroaches, 323.

Coffee, _see_ Tea.

Cold, on exposure to, 113, 118.
  Effect of, on infants, 114.

Cold and hot, food, 103.
  Drinks, 110.

Collecting of specimens, 253.

Colleges, on the endowment of, 51.
  On physicians in, 198.

Colors, coloring and, 300.
  For different complexions, 327.

Combe, Andrew, on drinks, 111.
  On exercising the brain, 199.
  On infants, 214.
  On animal food, 221.

Complexions, colors for the different, 327.

Condiments in food, 99.

Constipation, 235, 237, _note_.

Constitution, delicacy of, in American females, 41, 45, 47;
    causes of it, 45, 128.
  On early attention to the, 49.
  Duties of wealthy mothers, respecting their children's, 50.
  Effect of stimulating drinks on the, 107.

Conveniences, on providing, 162.
  For cooking, 319.
  _See_ Closets.

Convivial meetings, on exposures after, 119, 247.

Cooking, food made unhealthy by, 99, 101.
  Conveniences wanted for, 319.

Cooper, Sir Astley, cited, 195.

Corrosive sublimate, poisoning from, 241.

Corsets, 116.

Couches, cheap, 312.

Courtesy, want of, 137, 141;
  causes of it, 138, 148.
  _See_ Democracy.

Cows, to take care of, 352.

Creeping of infants, 219.

Cribs for infants, 218.

Crickets, 323.

Crockery, 319.

Crocus, 335.

Crown Imperial, 335.

Cruelty in amusements, 244, 246.

Crying of infants, 219.

Curculios, 351.

Currants, 348, 350.

Curtains, 302, 304.

Curvature, _see_ Spine.

Cuts, remedies for, 240.

Cutting and sewing, 324, 328.

Cuvier, cited, 220.


Daffodils, 336.

Dahlias, 336.

Dancing, 245, 246.

Daughters, on schooling, 48.
  On keeping, as domestic assistants, 60.
  Educated to domestic work, 67.
  _See_ Female, _and_ Girls.

Day, on converting into night, 123.
  Influence of, on vegetables and blood, 124.

Debt, on running into, 232.

Democracy, principles of, identical with Christian, 25, 34.
  Tendencies of, as to the female sex, 27.
  On progress towards, 34.
  On what the success of, depends, 36.
  Of early rising, 123.
  Courtesy of manners and, 138, 140, 146.

Derangement, from over-excitement, 197.

Diet, _see_ Food.

Difficulties, peculiar to American women, 38.
  On estimating them justly, 39, 151.
  Remedies for, 48, 151.

Digestion, organs of respiration and, 87.
  Details respecting, 94.
  Articles easiest for, 101, 104.
  Experiments respecting, 104.
  _Bulk_ of food necessary to, 105.
  Impeded by bathing, 121.

Dining-rooms, care of, 306.

Dinner, setting table for, 309.

Dirt not healthy, 118.

Dish-cloths, 317.

Dishes, on washing, 318.

Dolls, benefits from, 254.

Domestic amusements, 244.

Domestic exercise, 128.

Domestic Economy, on raising, as a science, 50, 67.
  Reasons for introducing, into school, 63.
  On teaching, from books, 65.
  Indispensable part of education, 134.

Domestic education, importance of, in childhood, 48.
  On early training in, 49, 60, 67.
  On giving mornings to, 49.
  In the Monticello Female Seminary, 54.
  Should alternate with studies, 60.
  Sufferings for want of, 63.
  Many mothers unqualified to teach, 65.
  Dignity of, 67, 135.

Domestics, peculiar difficulties as to, in America, 40, 204.
  Duties to be done by daughters, and not by, 50.
  Blessing of a dearth of, 50.
  Without, 64.
  On making allowances for, 154, 210, 212.
  Care of, 204.
  Of aristocratic lands, 205.
  Placing ourselves in their situation, 205, 206.
  Exorbitant wages of, 205.
  Instability and discontent of, and the remedy, 206.
  Pride and insubordination of, and the remedy, 207, 208.
  On calling them _servants_, 207.
  Admitted to the table, 209.
  Bold and forward, 209.
  Dress and rooms of, 209, 210.
  Deficiencies of, and the remedies, 210.
  Getting away, 211.
  Finding fault with, 211.
  Patience with, 212.
  Regard to, in construction of houses, 261.
  Beds for, 315.

Doors, outside, 260, 263.

Dress, too much attention to, 166.
  Inconsistency in, 189.
  Of domestics, 209.
  _See_ Clothing.

Dresses, for the domestic duties of school girls, 55.
  Colors for, 327.
  _See_ Clothing.

Drink, during meal-time, 103.

Drinks, on healthful, 106.

Drowning, 241.

Dumb-waiters, 278, 306.

Dusting, 304, 306.

Duties, enjoyments connected with, 183.


Early rising, 122.
  Democratic, 123.
  Reasons for, 124.
  Time for, 126.
  Longevity and, 126.
  Effects of, on a family, 126;
    on the community, 127;
    on systematic duty, 166.

Earthen ware, 319.

Eating, intemperance in, 94, 95.
  At any time, 96.
  Too fast, 101.
  Should not be followed by exercise, 102;
    nor bathing, 121.
  _See_ Food.

Eating-rooms, care of, 306.

Economy, on domestic, 152.
  Extravagance changed for, 176.
  Contradictory ideas as to, 185.
  General principles as to, 186.
  Relative obligations of rich and poor as to, 191.
  Neglect as to, 193.
  Of the aristocracy, 194.

Education in America, 147.
  Associations for, 203.
  _See_ Female, _and_ Monticello.

Employment, for the different divisions of a week, 162.
  On regular, for all the family, 163.

Enjoyments, _see_ Amusements, _and_ Happiness.

Equality, on democratic, 25.
  _See_ Democracy, Sexes, _and_ Women.

Establishments, expensive, given up, 176.

Exercise, comparative, of American women and others, 44.
  Neglect of, 50, 244.
  Method for securing, at the Monticello Female Seminary, 54.
  Indispensable to the health of the several parts of the
     human frame, 73, 97.
  Of the muscles, 76, 78, 97, 116, 128, 129.
  Effect of want of, on the spine, 78, 80.
  Food to be graduated by, 97.
  After eating, bad, 102.
  Evils of want of, 129.
  On furnishing interesting, 131.
  Walking for, 131.
  In useful employments, 131.
  Excessive, 132.
  Rule as to, 133.
  On excessive, of the mind and feelings, 197.
  Of the brain, 199.

Exhalations from the skin, 92.

Expenses, on keeping account of, 173, 174.
  Economy in, 185, 193.
  On graduating, by the income, 186.
  On gentility in being careless of, 193.
  On extravagance in, 194.
  _See_ Economy.

Eyes, screening, from light, 217, 283.


Family, on early rising in the, 126.
  Fathers neglecting the, 255.
  On attachments of, 256.

Fasting in sickness, 235.

Fathers neglecting home, 255.

Fault-finding, 211.

Featherbeds, 114, 313.

Feelings, inactivity of the, 199.

Feet, on protecting the, 115, 117, 129.
  Keeping those of infants, warm, 217.
  Bathing, for a cold, 235.

Female association for educating poor females, 59.

Female education, advantages for, in America, 43.
  Objects to be attended to, in, 48, 49.
  Importance of mathematics in, 56.
  Should be conducted by females, 58.
  Present waste in conducting, 60.
  _See_ School.

Female seminaries, on the endowment of, 51.
  Importance of, 52.
  Defects of, 53.
  Suitable, 53.
  Monticello Female Seminary, described, 54.
  Division of labor and responsibility in, 58.
  Requirement for admission to the Monticello, 59.
  On providing, 61, 68.
  Reasons for introducing the study of domestic economy into, 63.
  Establishment of, by a wealthy female, 202.
  Should have gardens, 251.

Females, influence of, on the character of the young, 37.
  Building schoolhouses, 202.
  _See_ American women, Girls, _and_ Women.

Filberts, 348.

Finding fault, 211.

Finger nails, 122, 144.

Fire, escaping from, 243.

Fireplaces and fires, 260, 265, 280, 311.

Fishing, 244.

Flannel, 114.
  Utility of, 115.
  On washing, 285, 286.

Fleas, 323.

Flies, on destroying, 323.

Flower baskets, 354.

Flower seeds, on planting, 332.

Flowers, 251, 335.
  Arranging, 337.

Fluids, on taking, 103, 104.

Folding articles, 315.

Follicles of the skin, 93.

Food, on the conversion of, into nourishment, 87.
  Responsibility as to, in a family, 94.
  On taking too much, 94, 95, 128.
  On one kind of, for each meal, 95.
  Should be taken at proper times, 96.
  Strong laboring men need most, 96.
  Quantity of, to be graduated by exercise, 97.
  On the quality of, 98.
  Stimulating, 99.
  Animal and vegetable, 99, 100, 220, 221.
  Kinds of, most easily digested, 101, 104, 105.
  Injurious, from bad cooking, 101.
  On eating, too fast, 101, 128.
  On exercise after taking, 102.
  On hot and cold, 103.
  Highly concentrated, 104.
  Certain _bulk_ of, necessary to digestion, 105.
  For infants, 214, 216.
  For nurses, 215.
  Sickness from improper, 235.
  Preparing, for the sick, 239.

Footstools, 303.

Foreigners, employed as domestics, 40.

Forewarning domestics, 211.

Forwardness of domestics, 209.

Franklin, Benjamin, diet of, 222.

Frocks, to make, 326.

Fruit, on the cultivation of, 251, 347.
  To preserve, 350.

Fuel, hints as to, 280.

Furnaces, 260, _note_.

Furniture, on costly, 163, 167.
  On inconsistent, 188.
  On selecting, 302.
  Packing of, for moving, 316.
  Kitchen, 319.


Games of children, 253.

Garden seeds, to plant, 333.

Gardening, 331.

Gardens, at female institutions, 251.
  On laying out, 334.

Gas, antidote for, 242.

Gastric juice, 88, 94.

Gathering, in shirts, 325.

Girls, on sending, to school, 48, 60.
  Should assist their mothers early, 49.
  Education of, at the Monticello Female Seminary, 54.
  Confinement of, in school, 133.
  Small, made useful, 164.
  Forming habits of system, 167;
    of making purchases and keeping accounts, 188.
  Effects of excitement on, 197.
  Taking care of infants by, 214.
  _See_ Daughters, _and_ Females.

Gladiolus, 335.

Gloves, cleansing, 298.

Godfrey, Benjamin, Female Seminary endowed by, 54.

Gooseberries, 348, 350.

Gothic cottage, 271.

Government of children, 226.
  Unsteadiness in, and over-government, 228.
  Maxims on, 229.
  _See_ Children, Subordination, _and_ Young children.

Grafting, 344.

Grapes, 349, 350.

Grates, 281.

Gratifications, on physical, 159, 171, 172.

Grease-spots, 289, 297, 298.
  In carpets, 304.

Greeks and Romans, bathing by, 120.


Habit, in a system of duty, 166.

Handkerchiefs, cleansing, 298.

Happiness, dependence of, on character, 169.
  On living to make, 169, 200.
  Connected with duties, 183.

Hard-soap, to make, 291.

Head, blows on the, 241.

Headache, 78, 95.

Health, delicacy and infrequency of, in American women, 41, 45.
  Effect of mental excitement on 43;
    of a high sense of responsibility, &c., 44;
    of want of outdoor exercise, 44;
    of bad early training, 45;
    of exposures in newly-settled countries, 46.
  On preparation for a _rational_ care of, in a family, 68, 69.
  Connection of exercise and, 73, 76, 78, 97, 133;
    of the quantity of food and, 94, 95, 100;
    of the quality, 98.
  Of Catholics during Lent, 100.
  Not from dirt, 118.
  Effect of early rising on, 125.
  On the duty of sacrificing, 159.
  Causes which injure the mind's, 196.
  Amusements and, 245.
  Laughter and, 253.
  Regard to, in constructing houses, 260.
  Ventilation and, 311.
  Connection of, with cellars, 322.
  _See_ Air, Exercise, _and_ Sickness.

Hearths, 305.

Hearts, different, 84.
  Cause of their throbbing, 90.

Heat of the body, regulated by the skin, 92.

Heating houses, 260.

Help, _see_ Domestics.

Helping at table, 310.

Herbaceous roots, 339.

Horse-racing, 245, 246.

Horses, care of, 351.

Hose, on washing, 286, 289.

Hospitality, on manifesting, 144.
  To strangers, 257.

Hot and cold food and drinks, 103, 110.

Hot-beds, 331.

House-cleaning, 353.

Housekeepers, difficulties peculiar to American women as, 30.
  Preservation of good temper in, 148, 150.
  Allowances to be made for, 150.
  Necessity of a habit of system and order in, 157.
  General principles for, 158.
  Plans by, for saving time, 184.
  _See_ American women.

Housekeeping, on a knowledge of, 134.
  Dignity and difficulty of, 150, 157.
  _See_ Labor.

House-plants, to repot, 333.
  Care of, 341.

Houses, on the construction of, 258.
  Regard to economy of labor in, 258;
    to water, 259, 275;
    to heating, 260;
    to economy of health, 260;
    to domestics, 261;
    to good taste, 261.
  Plans of, and of domestic conveniences, 261.
  Shade-trees around, 275.
  Back-door accommodations to, 276.

Hunger, 94, 132.
  As a guide for taking food, 97.

Hunting, 244.

Hyacinths, 335.


Illinois, female association in, for educating poor females, 59.
  _See_ Alton.

Imagination, 199.
  Works of, 249.
  _See_ Novel reading.

Impostors, soliciting charity, 178.

Impurity of thought, 233.

Income, _see_ Expenses.

Indigestion, 101.
  _See_ Health.

Infants, mortality among, 112, 114, 214.
  Too cold, 113.
  Plunging, in cold water, 113.
  Registrations of, 113.
  On giving, to the older children, 165.
  Use of, to elicit charity, 179.
  Importance of knowing how to take care of, 213.
  Combe, Bell, and Eberle on, cited, 214.
  Food for, 214, 216, 218.
  Medicines for, 215, 216, 218, 219.
  Pure air for, 217, 218.
  Keeping warm, 217, 218.
  Keeping their heads cool, 217.
  Bathing, 217, 218.
  Nostrums for, 219.
  Unquiet, 219.
  To creep, 219.
  Standing, 219.
  Crying, 219.
  _See_ Children, _and_ Mortality.

Ingrafting, 344.

Ink-stains, 298.

Insects, on destroying, 323.
  Preserving apple trees from, 350.

Institutions, _see_ Female seminaries, _and_ School.

Intelligence, dependence of democracy on, 36.

Intemperance, H. Martineau on, criticized, 30, _note_.
  In eating, 94, 95.
  In drinking, 106.
  Female responsibility as to, 106.

Invitations, 353.

Ironing, articles to be provided for, 293.
  Settee for, 293.
  Boards for, 294.
  Hints on, 295.

Iron-ware, 319.


Jewish use of time, 182.

Jokes, 253.

Jonquilles, 335.


Kitchens, 163, 259.
  On taking care of, 317.
  Floors of, 317.
  Oilcloths for, 317.
  Furniture for, 319.

Knitting, to employ time, 185.

Knives and forks, 307.


Labelling powders, 239.

Labor, nobility of, 55, 147.
  On opposing the idea of the degradation of, 61, 123, 124.
  Not inconsistent with delicacy, 62.
  On economy of, in houses, 258.

Laces, doing up of, 292.

Lamps, 281.
  Care of, 282.

Laplanders and their food, 220.

Lard, used for oil, 281.

Latticed portico, 277.

Laughter, 253.

Laws, necessity of a system of, 25.

Leghorn hats, 299.

Lent, health during, 100.

Ley, to make, 290.

Life, object of, 168.

Light, effects of, 124.
  Screening eyes from, 217, 283.

Lightning, 243.

Lightning rods, 243.

Lights, 281.

Limbs of trees, on training, 348.

Linens, 288, 328.

Linnæus, cited, 220.

Liquids, on taking, 103, 104.

Literature, guarding, 249.

Longevity, Sinclair on, 126.
  From vegetable diet, 221.

Louis XIV., manners of his age, 148.

Lungs, 89.
  Effects of tight-dressing on the, 90, 117.
  Bleeding at the, 243.

Luxuries, _see_ Superfluities.


Mahogany furniture, 305.

Manners, good, 136.
  American defect in, and cause of it, 137.
  Of the Puritans and their posterity, 137.
  Principles respecting, 140.
  Proprieties in, 141.
  On cultivation of, 141.
  At home, 142.
  Leading points as to, claiming attention, 142.
  Children to be taught, 143.
  On conventional, 144.
  At table, 144.
  Charity for bad, 145.
  Of the age of Louis XIV., 148.
  _See_ Children.

Marble, stains on, 305.

Martineau, Harriet, criticized, 30, _note_, 141, _note_.

Mathematics, importance of, in a female education, 56.

Mattresses, 312, 329.

Meals, should be five hours apart, 96.
  On the nature of the, 103.
  Time of English, 123.

Meat, on eating, 99, 100.
  _See_ Animal food, _and_ Food.

Mechanical amusements, 254.

Medical men needed in literary institutions, 198.

Medicines, on giving, to infants, 215.
  On administering, 236, 238.
  Different effects of different, 236.
  On purchasing, 239.
  Labelling, 239.

Men, engaged in women's work, 164, 165.

Mending, 330.

Mental excitement, effect of, on health, 43.
  On reducing youthful, 48, 49.
  On invigorating, 56.
  Effect of, on the mind, 197.
  _See_ Mind.

Mexicans, teeth of, 110.

Mice, 323.

Mildew, removing, 296.

Milk, for infants, 216, 217.

Milkweed-silk, 227.

Mind, connection of body and, 195.
  Causes which injure the health of the, 196.
  On inactivity of, 199.
  Indications of diseased, 204.
  _See_ Health, _and_ Mental excitement.

Mineralogical collections, 253.

Modesty in children, 233.

Money, children's earning, 164.

Montagu, Lady Mary Wortley, cited, 135.

Monticello Female Seminary, account of, 54.
  System of studies there, 57.
  Effort made there to cure defects of character and habits, 58.

Morals, American, 29.
  Dependence of democracy on, 36.
  Attention to, in the Monticello Female Seminary, 58.
  In children, 233.
  _See_ Children, _and_ Young children.

Mortality, among infants, 112, 114.
  Causes of it, 214.
  At the Albany Orphan Asylum, 222.
  _See_ Infants.

Mothers, sufferings of American, 42.
  The great objects for, in educating their daughters, 48.
  Influence of wealthy, 50.
  Should raise the science of domestic economy, 51.
  Few, qualified to teach domestic economy, 65.
  Influence of, 149, 151.
  Teaching boys domestic arts, 164.
  _See_ American women, _and_ Women.

Moths, 323.

Muscles, 74.
  Exercise of the, 76, 78, 97, 116, 129.
  Excessive exercise of, 132.

Music, 58, 252.

Muslins, on washing, 288.
  Starching, 292.

Musquitoes, 323.


Nails, cleaning, 122, 144.

Nankeens, on washing, 288.

Napkins, table, 307.

Narcissus, 335.

Nash, Beau, biography of, 148.

Neatness, in housekeeping, 152.
  Of sick-rooms, 238.
  _See_ Cleanliness.

Needle-work, bad economy in, 189.

Nerves, 76.
  Ramifications of the, 78.
  Health of, dependent on muscular exercise, 78, 130.
  Function of, in the stomach, 87.
  Excited by stimulating drinks, 106, 111.
  Two kinds of, 129.
  On cutting off, 130.
  Exercise and inactivity of, 130.
  Debility of, 130, 199.

New Englanders, one cause of their tact, 165.

Newton, Sir Isaac, diet of, 222.

Night, converting, into day, 123.

Nightgowns, 114, 329.

Night-lamps, 283.

Novel reading, 199, 234, 249.

Nursery, discipline of the, 224, 230.

Nursery, soil for a, 347.

Nursing, on food while, 215.
  Of the sick, 237.


Obedience of children, 226.
  _See_ Children, _and_ Government.

Objects of charity, 176.

Oil, 281.
  Taking out, 297.

Oilcloths, for kitchens, 317.

Opium, absorbed by the skin, 93.
  Antidote for, 242.

Order, on a habit of, 157.

Ornaments, 166.
  Time and money spent for, 175, 259.

Orphan Asylum at Albany, 222.

Ostrich feathers, washing, 299.

Outhouses, 276.

Over-government, 228, 229.
  _See_ Children, _and_ Government.


Packing, of trunks, 316.
  Of furniture for moving, 316.

Pain, amusements causing, 244.

Paint-spots, 298.

Pantaloons, on mending, 330.

Parents, exercising of authority by, 226.
  Should provide amusements, 250.
  Joining in children's sports, 254.

Parlors, kitchens and, 163, 259.
  Light work in, to save time, 184.
  Inconsistently furnished, 189.
  On the care of, 302.
  On selecting furniture for, 302.
  Sweeping, 305.
  Screens in, 353.

Parties, invitations to, 353.

Passions, the, 170.
  _See_ Temper.

Peach trees, 350.

Perennial plants, 339.

Peristaltic motion, 87, 96, 102.

Perspiration, 92, 93.
  Demands supply of food, 96.
  From exercise, healthful, 114.
  During sleep, 126.
  On inducing, 235, 236.

Physical education, _see_ Exercise, _and_ Health.

Physicians, obeying, 239.

Piano, playing on the, 252.

Pictures, 302, 304.

Pills, 236, 237, _note_.

Pitch, on removing, 297.

Plans, for apportioning time, 158, 160.
  For duties, 162, 166, 167.
  For saving time, 184.
  For expenses, 186.
  Of houses, 261.

Planting flower seeds, 332.

Plants, collecting, 253.
  In rooms with stoves, 281.
  Soil for, 331.
  Propagation of, 341.
  _See_ Flowers, _and_ Seeds.

Poisoning, 241.

Politeness, _see_ Courtesy, _and_ Manners.

Poor, Mosaic laws as to the, 182.
  On work for the, 189, 190.
  Liberal prices and prompt payment to the, 191.
  _See_ Charity.

Pores, closing the, 119.
  _See_ Skin.

Portico, latticed, 277.

Positions, effects of, 73, 80.

Potash-soap, 291.

Pot-plants, soil for, 331.

Pots, transplanting from, 333.

Powders, labelling, 239.

Precocity in children, 198.

Privies, 276.

Propagation of plants, 341.

Propensities, 170.

Property, Jews' use of, 182.
  Unequal distribution of, 191.
  On sharing, 191.
  On using, properly, 193.

Pruning, 346.

Pumps, 275.

Punctuality, and want of it, 128.
  In paying the poor, 191.

Purchases, on making, 193, 194.

Puritans, manners of the, 137.


Quality of food, 98.

Quantity of food, _see_ Food.


Ranunculus, 335.

Rats, 323

Red ants, 323.

Registrations of births, 113.

Religion, perversion of, 198.

Religious excitement, 197.

Respect, American want of, 139, 141.
  Should be required at home, 142.
  _See_ Courtesy.

Respiration, organs of, 87.

Rewards, governing by, 230.

Roman Catholics, health of, during Lent, 100.

Romans, _see_ Greeks.

Rooms, arrangement of, 259.

Running into debt, 232.


St. Martin, Alexis, experiments on, respecting food, 104.

Salary, plan as to using, 186.

Salt, for bleeding, 243.

Salts, 236.

School, hints on, 48, 223.
  Too much required in, 49.
  On keeping, only in the afternoon, 49.
  On sending young children to, 223.

Schoolrooms and schoolhouses, 133.
  Not ventilated, 196, 223.
  Built by a lady in the West, 202.
  _See_ Female.

Scolds, 149, 154.

Scotch Highlanders, 221.

Screens, in parlors, 353.
  _See_ Eyes.

Secret vice, 233.

Sedgwick, Miss, her Live and Let Live, 213, _note_.

Seeds, on planting, 332, 333.
  Of fruit, on planting, 347.

Self-denial, happiness of, 169.
  Distinction as to, 170.
  Of wealthy women, 201, 202.
  In children, 224, 232.

Servants, on calling domestics, 207.
  _See_ Domestics.

Services, paying children for, 164.

Settees for ironing, 293.

Setting tables, 307.
  Rules for, 308.

Sewing, by girls, 254.
  Hints on. 324.

Sewing-trunks, 162.

Sexes, M. De Tocqueville on the, 28.
  Distinct lines of action for the, 28, 32, 33.
  American equality of, 33.

Shade-trees, 275, 340.

Shells, collecting, 253.

Shirts, folding, 315.
  Making, 328.

Shrubs, for yards, 340.

Sickness, on ignorance and inexperience in time of, 68.
  On nursing in, 237.
  From chills and food, 239.
  Remedies for slight, 240.
  _See_ Health.

Sick-rooms, hints on, 237.
  Furniture for, 238.

Silence, children to keep, 145, 230.
  When in anger, 152.

Silks, on cleansing, 298.

Sinclair, Sir John, on longevity and early rising, 126.

Sinks, 277, 317.

Six Weeks on the Loire, cited, 135.

Skeleton, cut of the, 70.

Skin, described, 91.
  Function of the, 91.
  Waste matter from the, 92, 118.
  Regulates the heat of the body, 92.
  Absorbent vessels of the, 93, 119.
  Follicles of the, 93.
  The organ of touch, 93.
  Circulation in the, in infants, 113.
  Effect of cold on the circulation in the, 113, 118, 119.
  Bathing infants', 217.

Sleep, amount of, required, 125.
  On protracting, 126.
  In close apartments, 196, 217, 311.
  _See_ Ventilation.

Sliding closets, 278.

Smoky chimneys, 352.

Snow, bathing in, 121.

Soap, soda, 288.
  Soft, 290.
  Potash, 291.
  Hard, 291.

Social intercourse, 184.

Soda-soap, 288.

Soda-washing, 287.

Soil, on the preparation of, 331.
  For a nursery, 347.

Soups, 104, 105.

South-Sea Islanders, 221.

Specimens, collecting, 253.

Spine, frequency of the disease of the, 41;
    causes, 73, 133.
  Cut of the, 77.
  Curvature of the, 80.
  Difference between a natural and distorted, 80.

Spitting on carpets, 144.

Spots, removing, 289, 297, 298.

Sprains, 240.

Stain-mixture, 296.

Stains, removing, from clothes, 296;
    from marble, 305.

Starch, to make, 291.
  To prepare, 292.

Starching, hints on, 292.

Stimulating drinks, no need of, 106, 109, 111.
  Excite the nervous system, 106, 109, 111.
  Debilitate the constitution, 107.
  Temptation from using, 107.
  Five forms of using, 107.
  Reasons for using, considered, 107.
  Dr. Combe on, 111.
  If good for parents, may not be for children, 111.
  Compared with animal food, 112.

Stimulating food, 99.
  _See_ Animal food, _and_ Food.

Stock-grafting, 345.

Stockings, on washing, 286, 289.

Stomach, 87.
  Peristaltic motion of the, 87, 96, 102.
  Effects on, of too much food, 94, 95.
  Rule for the labor and repose of the, 96.
  Power of accommodation in the, 102.
  Wants rest, 223.

Storerooms, 271, 322.

Stoves, 281.

Strangers, hospitality to, 257.

Strawberries, 348.

Straw hats, 299.

Straw matting, 304, 311.

Studies, at the Monticello Female Seminary, 57.
  Pursued at random, 60, 68.

Subordination, social, 26.
  Female, in America, 27, 29, 32.
  Of children and others, 140, 224.
  _See_ Government.

Superfluities, 163.
  Duty as to, 171-173.
  On determining respecting, 173.

Sweeping, 134.
  Of carpets, 303.
  Of parlors, 305.

Sympathy, on silent social, 149.

System, continual change and renovation of the human, 91.
  In housekeeping, 152.
  On habits of, 155.
  By dividing the week, 162.
  In proper conveniences, 162.
  On attempting too much, at once, 166.
  On commencing, while young, 167.
  In time, 184.


Table, furniture for a, 306.
  On setting, 307;
  rules for, 308.
  Carving and helping at, 310.

Table manners, 144.

Table-mats, 306.

Tapers, 283.

Tar, on removing, 297.

Tea, coffee and, on the use of, 107, 108.
  Cause nervous debility, 109.
  Love of, not natural, 109.
  If good for adults, may not be for children, 109.
  Black, least injurious, 110.
  No nourishment in, 112.
  _See_ Stimulating.

Teachers, 202, 203.

Teeth, effects of hot drink on, 110.
  Care of, 122, 144.

Teething of infants, 219.

Temper, on the preservation of good, in a housekeeper, 148;
    hints for it, 150.
  Making allowances for, in others, 154.
  _See_ Passions.

Temptations, amusements with, 245, 248.

Tendons, 75.

Theatres, 245.

Thinning plants, 346.

Thoughts, on pure, 233.

Throat, things in the, 240.

Thunderstorms, 243.

Tic douloureux, 78.

Tight dressing, 80, 90, 129.
  Evils of, 116.
  Rule as to, 117.

Time, on apportioning, 157, 160, 181, 184.
  On saving, 161, 184.
  Errors as to employing, 180.
  Devoted by Jews to religion, 183.

Tin ware, 320.

Tocqueville, M. De, on the sexes in America, 28.
  On progress in nations towards democracy, 34.
  On female hardships in the West, 46.
  On aristocratic and democratic manners, 146.

Tones of voice, 148.
  On governing the, 152.
  Governing by angry, 230.
  Effects of angry, on children, 231.

Towels, 321.

Tracts and charity, 179.

Transplanting, 333, 340.

Travelling-bags, 316.

Trees, about houses, 275.
  On planting, 334.
  Shade, 340.
  On transplanting, 340.
  Pruning and thinning, 346.

Trials, _see_ Difficulties.

Trunks, sewing, 162.
  In chambers, 313.
  Packing of, 316.

Tuberous roots, 335.

Tulips, 336.

Turpentine, on removing, 297.


Unbolted flour, 105.


Vegetable food, 99, 100, 220, 221.
  _See_ Animal food, _and_ Food.

Vegetables, effect of light and darkness on, 124.

Veils, whitening, 293.

Ventilation, importance of, 49, 196, 217, 311.
  Of sleeping-rooms, 129, 196, 311.
  Of schoolrooms, 223.
  Of sick-rooms, 237.
  In construction of houses, 261, 264.
  Where stoves are used, 281.
  _See_ Air.

Vermin, on destroying, 323.

Vertebræ, 72.

Virtue, _see_ Morals.

Vulgar habits, 144.


Wadsworth's cottage, 273, 274.

Wages, exorbitant, of domestics, 205.
  Offering higher, 211.

Waiting at table, 309.

Walking for exercise, 131.

Wardrobes, 312.

Washing, of clothes done by pupils, 55.
  Of the body, 92, 93, 119, 121.
  Of children, 121, 122.
  Water for, 284.
  Articles to be provided for, 284.
  Common mode of, 285.
  Of calicoes, 287.
  Soda-washing, 287.
  Of various articles, 288.
  Of carpets, 304.
  Of dishes, 318.
  _See_ Bathing.

Wash-pans for children, 121.

Waste matter, from the skin 92, 118.

Water, protection against, in the skin, 93.
  On drinking, 111.
  Drinking too much, 112.
  Plunging infants in cold, 113.
  _See_ Drinks, _and_ Stimulating.

Wealthy mothers, influence of their example, 49.

Wells, remedy for air in, 242.
  Remarks on, 259, 275.

West, on female hardships in the, 46.

Wheat, unbolted, 105.

Whitening, of lace veils, 293.
  Of other articles, 296.

Whitewashing, 279.

Wicks, 282.

Winter, air and sleep in, 125.

Women, European contempt for, 30.
  American esteem for, 30.
  Influence of, on individuals and nations, 37.
  Exercise taken by English, 45.
  Responsibleness of, 52.
  Eating without being hungry, 98.
  Responsibility of, as to intemperance, 106.
  Precedence given to, in America, 141.
  Importance and difficulty of their duties, 155.
  General principles for, 158;
  frequent inversion of them, 160.
  Men engaged in their work, 164, 165.
  On their keeping accounts of expenditures, 173, 174.
  Imagining themselves domestics, 205.
  _See_ American women.

Wood, for fuel, 280.

Wooden ware, 321.

Woodhouses, 273, 276, 277.

Woollens, on washing, 289.

Workbaskets, 325.


Yellows, the, 350.

Young children, female influence on their character, 37.
  Mismanagement of, 43.
  Management of, 42, 220.
  Animal food for, 220.
  At the Albany Orphan Asylum, 222.
  Intellectual and moral training of, 223.
  Three habits for, 224.
  On distancing, 226.
  On appreciating their enjoyments and pursuits, 227.
  Keeping them happy, 231.
  On ridiculing, 231.
  Modesty and propriety in, 233.
  Impurity of thought in, 233.

Young Ladies' Friend, cited, 134.


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