Tuesday, December 11, 2012


  I found online "Fenelon's Treatise on the education of Daughters." The sensitivity and warmth of his letters to adults has always captured and inspired me, so I was eager to read this book on educating girls. It is amazing how relevant it is to today although written in the sixteen hundreds.

  “We should consider that children have a tender intellect, that their age makes them susceptible chiefly of pleasure, and that we often expect from them a correctness and seriousness of deportment, which their instructors are sometimes incapable of evincing.
 A very dangerous impression of ennui (a feeling of utter weariness and discontent resulting from lack of interest or boredom) and sadness is produced on their mind by perpetually talking to them of words and things which they do not understand: no liberty, no amusement! always lesson, silence, constraint, correction, and threats!

  Our ancient forefathers knew better. It was by the charm of verses and music that the Hebrews, Egyptians and Greeks, introduced the principal sciences, the maxims of virtue, and the politeness of manners.

  So, let us unite the agreeable and the useful together, as much as lay in our power.  ”  

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