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these. Let it never be forgotten, that the office of the Sanctifier is to take of the things of Christ and apply them to the soul.
Parents and teachers! begin early to teach and to preach Jesus; such teaching the Holy Spirit will bless and make effectual. It is well understood by missionaries that Jesus Christ alone is the first and best theme by which to awaken the interest of the savage; and that the most delicious reward of many years' toil, is, when the half-enlightened heathen are heard to sound with a loud united voice the name of Jesus. How sweetly it comes to the long-tried missionary's ear over the African desert or vast American forest. Let it dwell in every heart; let it sound from every tongue. To that name which is above every name, may every knee be brought to bow. And may our young readers be led by the Holy Spirit, daily to desire more ardently, that they may walk worthy of the blessed name by which we are called!
SCHOOLING THE SENSES. IN Wilson's “ Biography of the Blind," of which we spoke approvingly in our last volume,* occurs the following account of Mademoiselle de Salignac, a blind French lady, born in 1741, who died at the early age of twenty-two.
It appears to us so fraught with practical benefit, that we feel it to be our duty to call special attention to it, as illustrative of the remarks we have from time to time made on the higher cultivation of the senses, and the mental faculties to which they minister. As a metaphysical question, the education of the Blind cannot receive too much. attention, for it almost seems to us that moral and mental culture are adequately understood only by this afflicted class. The faculties of hearing, smell, and touch are in ordinary cases so little cultivated, as to convey to the mind but very vague and unsatisfactory impressions. To calculate the size of a room, to estimate the state of the atmosphere, to know not only whether we are out of doors or in, but
At page 452. It is with much pleasure we find that our account of the author has excited an interest on his behalf, and we take this opportunity of stating, that his book is printed by J. W. Showell, 48, New-street, Birmingham.
actually to measure space and distance without the use of the eye, seem utter impossibilities to those blessed with the full power of vision, though they are amongst the least wonderful of all the wonders accomplished by the Blind.
Nor less remarkable are the movements of the inner machinery thus fed and set to work. A Memory that could map out with almost the accuracy of the builder himself, the plan of any house whose arrangements it had once learned ; a power of Comparison that could enable its possessor always to discriminate and distinguish voices it had once heard, and that retained its unsophisticated purity to such an extent that it was shocked beyond endurance at any inconsistency; an ability of Abstraction so surprising that it could live within itself, and grow to a stature unprecedented in the mental history of ninety-nine minds in every hundred—are magnificent problems for study and imitation. But the narrative shall speak for itself
“She had,” says M. Diderot, "an unusual fund of good sense, the utmost mildness and sweetness of disposition, uncommon penetration, and great simplicity of character. In her dress and person, there appeared a neatness, which was the more extra. ordinary, as not being able to see herself, she could never be sure that she had done all that was requisite to avoid disgusting others with the opposite quality.
“From her earliest youth it had been the study of those around her to improve her other senses to the utmost; and it is wonderful to what a degree they succeeded. By feeling, she could distinguish peculiarities which might be easily overlooked by those who had the best eyes; her hearing, and sense of smell, were also exquisite. She knew by the state of the atmosphere whether it was cloudy or serene; whether she was in an open place or a close street; also, whether she was in the open air or in a room; or if in a room, whether it was large or small. She could calculate the size of a circumscribed space, by the sound produced by her feet or her voice. When she had once gone over a house, she so well knew the plan of it, that she was able to warn others of any danger. She would say, 'Take care, the door is too low;' or, 'Do not forget that there is a step.' She accurately observed varieties of voices, and when once she had heard a person speak, she always knew the voice again : she was
neither sensible to the charms of youth, nor shocked by the wrinkles of age, and said that she regarded nothing but the qualities of the heart and mind.
“She was much disposed to confide in others, and it would have been no less easy than base to have deceived her; it was an inexcusable cruelty to make her believe that she was alone in a room, when any one was concealed there. She was not, however, subject to any kind of panic terrors ; seldom did she feel ennui, for solitude had taught her to be every thing to herself. Of all the qualities of the heart and mind, a sound judgment, mildness, and cheerfulness, were those which she prized the most. She spoke little, and listened much; “I am like the birds,” said she, “I learn to sing in darkness.' In comparing things which she heard one day, with those that she heard another, she was shocked at the inconsistency of our opinions ; and it seemed to her a matter of indifference, whether she was praised or blamed by beings so variable.
She had been taught to read, by means of letters cut out. She sung with taste, having an agreeable voice; she also learned to play on the violin, and this latter was a great source of amusement to herself by drawing about her the young people of her own age, whom she taught the dances that were most in fashion.
"Mademoiselle de Salignac was exceedingly beloved by all her brothers and sisters; “This,' she said, is another advantage which I derive from my infirmity, people are attached to me by the solicitude they feel for me, and by the efforts I make to deserve it, and be grateful for it; added to this, my brothers and sisters are not jealous of me. Indeed, I have many inducements to be good; what would become of me, if I were to lose the interest I inspire!
" She was taught music by characters in relief, which were placed in raised lines, upon the surface of a large table; these characters she read with her fingers, then executed the air upon her instrument, and, after a very little study, could play a part in a concert, however long or complicated.
“She understood the elements of astronomy, algebra, and geometry. Her mother sometimes read to her the Abbé De Caillès book, and, on asking her whether she understood it, she replied, “Oh, perfectly! “Geometry,' she said, 'is the proper science for the blind, because no assistance is wanting to carry it to perfection: the geometrician passes almost all his life with his eyes shut. I have seen the maps by which she studied geography; the parallels and meridians were of brass wire ; the boundaries of kingdoms and provinces were marked out by threads of silk or of wool, more or less coarse; the rivers and mountains by pin-heads, some larger, others smaller; and the towns by drops of wax, proportioned to their size.
" I one day said to her, “Mademoiselle, figure to yourself a cube.' 'I see it,' said she. “Imagine a point in the centre of the cube.' • It is done.' •From this point draw lines directly to the angles; you will then have divided the cube'
“ • Into six equal pyramids,” she answered, “ having every one the same faces; the base of the cube, and the half of its height.' 66. That is true, but where do you see it?' • In
my head, as you do.' “ I will own that I never could conceive how she formed figures in her head without colour. She wrote with a pin, with which she pricked a sheet of paper, stretched upon a frame: on this were placed two moveable metal rods, having a sufficient space between them, in which to form the letters. The same mode of writing was adopted in answering her letters, which she read by passing her fingers over the inequalities made by the pin, on the reverse of the paper. She could read a book printed only on one side, and Priault printed some in this manner for her use.
There was no sort of needle-work that she could not execute. She made purses and bags, plain, or with fine open work, in different patterns, and with a variety of colours ; garters, bracelets, and collars for the neck, with very small glass beads sewed upon them in alphabetical characters.
• The following conversation, in which I am the interlocutor, will shew the clearness of her conceptions on the arts of drawing, engraving, and painting. She said, “If you were to trace on my hand the figure of a horse, a mouth, a man, a woman, a tree, I certainly should not be mistaken, and if you were to trace the profile of a person I knew, I should not despair of naming the individual, if the likeness were exact; my hand would become to me a sensible mirror, but great indeed is the difference
between this canvas and the organ of sight. I suppose, then, that the eye is a living canvas of infinite delicacy; the air strikes the object; from this object it is reflected towards the eye, which receives an infinite number of different impressions, according to the nature, the form, and the colour of the object, and perhaps the qualities of the air; these are unknown to me, and you do not know much more of them than myself; it is by the variety of these sensations that they are painted to you. If the skin of my hand equalled the delicacy of your eyes, I should see with my hand, as you see with your eyes; and I sometimes figure to myself, that there are animals which are blind, and are not the less clear sighted.'
6. But explain,' said I, “the mirror.'
"If all bodies,' she replied, “are not so many mirrors, it is by some defect in their texture, which extinguishes the reflection of the air. I adhere so much the more to this idea, since gold, silver, and polished copper, become proper for reflecting the air; and troubled water and streaked ice lose this property. It is the variety of the sensation, and consequently the various property of reflecting the air in the matter you employ, which distinguishes writing and drawing, a drawing from an engraving, and engraving from a painting. Writing, drawing, engraving, painting, with only one colour, are so many cameos.'
“ • But when there is only one colour,' I inquired, how can any other colour be discerned ?'
“It is apparently,' she answered, “the nature of the canvas, the thickness of the colour, and the manner of employing it, that introduces in the reflection of the air, a variety corresponding with that of the forms; for the rest, do not ask me any thing more, I have gone to the utmost extent of my knowledge.'
“And I should be giving myself a great deal of very useless trouble,' I replied, “in endeavouring to teach you more.""
GROWTH IN GRACE. He were very quick sighted that could perceive the growing of the grass, or the moving of the shadow: yet when those are done, every eye doth easily discern them. It is no otherwise with grace: which how it encreaseth in the soul we cannot hope to perceive; but, being grown, we may see it.-(Bp. Hall.)