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some form or shape. If nature has not given beauty of face to all, she has given the power of acquiring a graceful movement and upright form-qualities more valuable and more durable than the other. These qualities are lost or gained at school; and of course they lie, to some extent, within the control of the instructor. It seems to me it would afford a great addition of satisfaction to the superintendent and guardian of the rising population, to be able to send out to the world his annual recruits, not only well imbued with knowledge and virtue, but also endowed with a handsome form and graceful manners.
The influence of an upright form and open breast on the health, has been, I think, sufficiently explained ; and what may be done to acquire these qualities is shown by many remarkable facts, one of which I will mention. For a great number of years, it has been the custom in France to give young females, of the earliest age, the habit of holding back the shoulders, and thus expanding the chest. From the observations of anatomists lately made, it appears that the clavicle or collar-bone is actually longer in females of the French nation than in those of the English. As the two nations are of the same race, as there is no other remarkable difference in their bones, and this is peculiar to the sex, it must be attributed, as I believe, to the habit above-mentioned, which, by the extension of the arms, has gradually produced a national elongation of this bone. Thus we see that habit may be employed to alter and improve the solid bones. The French have succeeded in the development of a part, in a way that adds to health and beauty, and increases a characteristic that distinguishes the human being from the brute,
As young persons ainasce a ace, and as the dispositoa to motica nating distantes, it becomes important to encourage and prosite for it, especially in fernales, and in young bea of sirdious ebaracter. Instead of restraining their scorenents, and blaming the disposition to frolic, they saculd be allowed and advisers to it, at proper times, and in becoming modes.
Next to wax og in the open air, the best exercise for a young female is dancing. This brings into action a large part of the muscles of the body and lower limbs, and gives them grace and power. The mode in which I wish to recommend its use, is not in bails and parties, and crowded assemblies, but at home, alone, or with two or three friends, or in the domestic circle. As this practice does not give motion to the upper limbs, and as the exercising them is too apt to be neglected, it is important to provide the means of bringing them into action, as well to develop their own powers, as to enlarge and invigorate the chest, with which they are connected, and which they powerfully influence. The best I know of is the use of the triangle. This admirably exerts the upper limbs and the muscles of the chest-and, indeed, when adroitly employed, those of the whole body. The plays at ball with both hands, and that of dumb-bells, are useful. The parallel bars afford a very fine exercise for the muscles of the body and upper limbs. Battledoor I should recommend to be played with the left hand as well as the right-a habit, like all others, acquired by due practice. While
* The triangle is made of a stick of walnut wood, four feet long, an inch and a half in diameter. To each end is connected a rope, the opposite extremities of which being confined together, are secured to the ceiling of a room, at such height as to allow the motion of swinging by the hands.
I particularly mention these, I should advise as great a diversity as possible, in exercise and amusement : so that, when the mind or the muscles get fatigued with one, they may take up another with fresh ardour. Every seminary of young persons should be provided with the instruments for these exercises : they are not expensive, occupy but little room, and are of unspeakable importance.
While active exercises should occupy time sufficient to excite the circulation, and to put in motion the organs, there must also be an occasional relaxation. At proper intervals, the whole muscular apparatus should be allowed to repose. I do not mean that the young lady should sleep during the day; but I wish to advise a graceful attitude on a couch or sofa, as a necessary alternation to muscular or mental effort.
The remarks last made have reference principally to the exercises of young ladies, who are more likely to suffer in this respect, in our plans of education, than the other sex.
The necessity of cultivating the physical powers in young men is sufficiently understood. The establishment of gymnasia through the country, promised, at one period, the opening of a new era in physical education, The exercises were pursued with ardour so long as their novelty lasted ; but, owing to not understanding their importance, or some defect in the institutions which adopted them, they have gradually been neglected and forgotten, at least in our vicinity. The benefits which resulted from these institutions, within ny personal knowledge and experience, far transcended the most sanguine expectations. I have known many instances of protracted and distressing affections wholly removed;
of weakly organized forms unfolded and invigorated, and of the attainment of extraordinary degrees of muscular energy and elasticity in persons in health.
The diversions of the gymnasium should constitute a regular part of the duties of all our colleges and seminaries of learning; and to give them the requisite power of excitement, the system of rewards, so dangerous when mismanaged in literary education, might be introduced without
ill effect. Our young men may surely find time to cultivate those exercises which Cicero and Cæsar, and some of the most studious among the ancient and modern philosophers, considered necessary, and contrived to prosecute in the midst of their studies and affairs. *
If the gymnasium is deserted because it calls for too much effort, let me entreat them at least to adopt a regular plan of walking. Two hours a day must be devoted to this business without relaxation, unless they are willing to carry the mark of disorder in the face while
young, and a dyspeptic, nervous, disabled frame through that part of life which requires health and activity.
* Cicero is described by Plutarch, as being, at one period of his life, extremely lean and slender, and having such a weakness in his stomach, that he could eat but little, and that not till late in the evening. He travelled to Athens, however, for the recovery of his health, where his body was so strengthened by gymnastic exercises, as to become firm and robust; and his voice, which had been harsh, was thoroughly formed, and rendered sweet, full, and sonorous.
In regard to Julius Cæsar, the same author informs us, that he was originally of a slender habit of body, had a soft and white skin, was troubled with pains in his head, and subject to epilepsy; but, by continual marches, coarse diet, and frequent lodging in the fields, he struggled against these diseases, and used war, and the exercises and hardships therewith connected, as the best medicine against these indispositions.-Sir John Sinclair.
I have often been asked how it is the German literati preserve their health without exercise. Some of them are known to pass most of their time in study, and think not of wasting their precious moments in taking care of their bodies. To this I reply: first, that they are careful to acquire a good constitution by habits of activity while they are young. The organs are properly developed, and confirmed in healthy action. Secondly, they do not break down their strength by luxurious ways of living and the free use of stiinulant drinks in early age. Thirdly, which is the great secret, they live most abstemiously. The digestive organs are not overburdened with food, and stand not in need of extraordinary efforts to relieve them.
Let those who are compelled to sedentary pursuits, seasonably lay aside one-half of their ordinary food, and they will experience no loss of time in combating the horrors of dyspepsia.
The inhabitants of the Philadelphia Penitentiary, confined to a uniform regimen, which of course limits itself, enjoy uninterrupted health. Those who were diseased from bad habits before they became its tenants are effectually cured after a short residence.
Regulation of the food is of primary consequence towards the formation of a good constitution. The most common error in relation to it consists in the use of too much food. Nature has given us organs of a certain capacity, on the presumption that, being called on to manual labour, we should then require a large quantity of food. Muscular efforts exhaust the strength, and require renovation by nutritious substances; but when the muscular efforts are small, the quantity of nourishment required is comparatively trifling ; and if, in con