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the Time of their Childhood, grievously exposed to many Hardships and Poverty upon the Death of their Parents, I have often wished there were more of the Callings or Employments of Life peculiarly appropriated to Women, and that they were regularly educated in them, that there might be a better Provifion made for their Support. What if all the Garments which are worn by Women were fo limited and restrained in the Manufacture of them, that they fhould all be made only by their own Sex? This would go a great way toward Relief in this Cafe: And what if fome of the easier Labours of Life were referved for them only? But this is not my Province.

HOWEVER it may be as to this Matter, it is the Custom of the Nation, and indeed it hath been the Cuftom of moft Nations and Ages, to educate Daughters in the Knowledge of Things that relate to the Affairs of the Houfhold, to Spin and to use the Needle, both for making Garments and for the Ornaments of Embroidery: They have been generally employed in the Preparation of Food, in the regular Difpofal of the Affairs of the House for the Conveniences and Accommodations of human Life, in the Furniture of the Rooms, and the Elegancies of Entertainment. Sarah made ready three Meafures of Meal and kneaded it, and made Cakes upon the Hearth. Gen. xviii. 6. And the Women

of Ifrael that were wife-hearted did fpin with their Hands both Blue and Purple and Scarlet and fine Linen for the Tabernacle. Exod. XXXV. 25. Women shall bake your Bread. Lev. xxvi. 16. Women few Pillows and make Kerchiefs. Ezek. xiii. 18. which Words, though perhaps they are a Metaphor in that Text, yet denote the Office or Work of Women. And Dorcas made Coats and Garments for the Poor. Acts ix. 36. 39. I might cite many antient Heathen Authors to prove the fame Thing among the Greeks and Romans, if it were needful.

SOME of thefe Things are the constant Labours and Cares of Women in our Day, whereby they maintain themselves: The moft laborious Parts of them belong to the Poor. And it is the Opinion of the best Judges that, even in fuperior and wealthy Circumftances, every Daughter should be so far instructed in them, as to know when they are performed aright, that the Servant may not ufurp too much Power, and impofe on the Ignorance of the Miftrefs. Nature and Providence feem to have designed thefe Offices for the Sex in all Ages and in all Nations, because while the Men are engaged in harder and more robuft Labours, and are often called abroad in Bufinefs, the Women are more generally accustomed to keep House and dwell at Home; and the Word of God as well as the Custom of huᏞ


man Life recommends it. Tit. ii. 5. 1 Tim.

V. 14.



Rules of Prudence.

LL Children fhould have fome Inftruction given them in the Conduct of human Life, fome neceffary Rules of Prudence, by which they may regulate the Management of their own Affairs, and their Behaviour towards their Fellow-Creatures. Where all other Sorts of Knowledge are conferred upon Children, if this be wanting, they make but a contemptible Figure in the World, and plunge themfelves into many Inconveniences.

SOME of thefe Rules of Prudence are of a general Nature and neceffary at all Times and upon all Occafions: Others are more particular, and proper to be used according to the various Occurrences of Life.

IF I were to enquire what are the Foundations of human Prudence, I should rank them under these three Heads.

1. A Knowledge of our felves. Here every one should be taught to confider within himfelf, what is my Temper and natural Inclination; what are my most powerful Appe

tites and my prevailing Paffions; what are my chief Talents and Capacities, if I have any at all; what are the Weakneffes and Follies to which I am moft liable, efpecially in the Days of Youth; what are the Temptations and Dangers that attend me ; what are my Circumftances in the World; and what my various Relations to Mankind round about me; what are my constant and what my occafional Duties; what are the inward or outward Advantages that attend me, or the Difadvantages under which I labour. A wife and juft Survey of all these Things, and keeping them always in Mind, will be of unspeakable Ufe to us in the Conduct of Life, that we may fet our chief Guard upon our weak Side, and where our greatest Dangers lie; that we may employ our Talents aright, and feize all Advantages to improve them for the beft Purpose, and proceed in the fhorteft Way to Piety, Usefulness and Peace.

2. THE Knowledge of Mankind is allo neceffary to acquire Prudence. And here young Perfons fhould not only be taught what is the general Nature and Capacity, the Virtues and the Vices and the Follies of Mankind; but they fhould be informed alfo, or at least should be taught to obferve more particularly, what are the peculiar Tempers, Appetites, Paffions, Powers, good and evil Qualities of the Perfons with whom L 2 they

they have moft to do in the World; that they may learn to behave wifely with regard to others, and that they may make a proper Improvement of all the brighter and darker Characters which they obferve amongst Men, both for their own Advantage and for the Benefit of their Fellow-Creatures. This may have a happy Influence to lead them to avoid the Vices and Follies which have plunged others into Mifchief, to imitate the Virtues of those who have behaved well in Life, and to fecure themfelves from many Dangers and Miferies, as well as to pity the Weakneffes and Sorrows of Mankind, and afford them a willing and chearful Relief.

3. THE Knowledge of the Things of the World and the various Affairs of human Life must be included as one of the chief Foundations of Prudence. It would be endlefs to run over Particulars of this kind ; but in a special Manner young Perfons should apply themselves to know thofe Things which most nearly concern them, and which have the most immediate Relation to their own Business and Duty, to their own Intereft and Welfare: And it is a valuable Part of Wisdom to neglect other Things, and not to waste our Time and Spirits in them when they ftand in any Competition with our proper and most important Work, whether we confider ourfelves as Men or as Chrif tians.


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