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ring the susceptibility of youth, excess is to be apprehended. What has delighted us once, we feel assured will delight us again. And though the trial should terminate in disappointment, or repetition should convert satisfaction into weariness; we seek to fill up the void, not by searching after pleasures of a higher nature, but by eagerly catching at gratifications fimilar to that, the delusive nature of which we have so lately experienced. The very circumstance of an amusement being innocent, renders its attractions the more likely to acquire unreafonable power over the unsuspecting breast of innocence. It excites no alarm: it has no features of deformity: the time which it occupies is speedily gone, and leaves no disagreeable recollection. It

may before a young woman is led to discern, in her own case, that an action individually blameless may, by frequency, become criminal; and to perceive the deficiency of what she has done in the line of improvement and utility by confidering what the might have done.

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Among the unhappy effects which attend an immoderate and confirmed thirst for amusements, this is one of the most lamentable ; that the malady is fitly ranked among the mental disorders most difficult to cure. Like the dropsy, it is distinguished by a burning desire for the indulgences most adverse to the diminution of the complaint; a desire so intense as scarcely to permit the sufferer to advert to any other object. The mind, unaccustomed to serious reflection, softened and enfeebled by relaxing habits, turns with disgust from argument and intelligence, clings to the trifles in which it has long delighted, and is almost incapable for a time of either seeking or of receiving gratification from better pursuits. The self-denial, the painful efforts, requisite to break the shackles of habit, are fully known to those only by whom the shackles of habit have been broken. Let every woman beware of being imperceptibly betrayed into fetters from which, without such selfdenial, fuch painful efforts, she cannot be

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extricated; yet from which it is necessary that she should be extricated, if she is to lead a life useful to others, ultimately comfortable to herself, and calculated to obtain the approbation of Heaven.

The risk to which a young woman is exposed of contracting a habit of excessive fondness for amusements, depends not only on the particular propensities of her mind, but also on the place and situation in which she principally resides. To the daughter of a country gentleman, the paternal mansion, insulated in its park, or admitting no contiguous habitations except the neighbouring hamlet, seldom furnishes the opportunity of access to a perpetual circle of amusements. Visitors are not always to be found in the drawing-room; the card-table cannot always be filled up; the county town affords a ball but once in a month; and domestic circumstances perversely arise to obstruct regularity of attendance. Suppose then a young woman thus situated to labour

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under the heavy disadvantage of not having had her mind directed by education to proper objects. Finding herself obliged to procure, by her own efforts, the entertainment which she is frequently without the means of obtaining from others, she is excited to some degree of useful exertion. Family conversation, needle-work, a book, even a book that is not a novel, in a word, any occupation is found preferable to the tediousness of a constant want of employ

Thus the foundation of some domestic habits is laid: or, if the habits were previously in existence, they are strengthened, or, at least, are preserved from being obliterated. She who is fixed in a country town, where society is always within reach, and something in the way of petty amusement is ever going forward, or may easily be set on foot, may, with greater facility, contract a habit of flying from a companion, who, if insipid and unpleasing to her, will be, of all companions, the most infipid and unpleasing, herself. But it is in the metro

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CHAP. X.

ON THE EMPLOYMENT OF TIME.

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o occupy the mind with useful employments is among the best methods of guarding it from surrendering itfelf to dissipation. To occupy it with such employments regularly, is among the best methods of leading it to love them. Young women sometimes complain, and more frequently the complaint is made for them, that they have nothing to do. Yet few complaints are urged with less foundation. To prescribe to a young person of the female sex the precisę occupations to which she should devote her time, is impossible. It would lie to attempt to limit, by inapplicable rules, what must vary according to circumstances which cannot previously be ascertained. Differences in point of health, of intellect, of taste, and a thousand nameless particularities of family occurrences and local situ

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