previous next
[496] years old, in a process of education such as most youths are apt to consider unnecessary after twenty or twenty-one.

When he was young, the best plea it seemed possible to make before the bar of Europe for the intellect of America was, that the raw material was abundant, but the appliances for education so imperfect that originality had no chance of obtaining. justice, for want of scholarship to place it well before the world. Mr. Ticknor felt this want; but before he sought to supply it abroad he had proved, that, when the eager thirst was accompanied by certain moral attributes, attainments were possible, even here, sufficient to place their possessor in full communion with the more fortunate inhabitants of countries which offered every means of mental training.

No better discipline of mind could have been secured, in the most famous schools and universities, than was attained by him with the defective means and amidst the simple customs of New England at the beginning of this century. No better foundation for success of the highest kind could have been laid than that which, when he was a boy, made self-mastery, integrity, and love of work the essentials of his daily life as much as the air he breathed. No better foundation than this can be laid for such continual progress in thought, as is the product of knowledge stored and methodized, and of moral purpose always rising as the knowledge advances.

To his moral qualities, again, was due his paramount and obvious purpose of making his knowledge, his experience, and his thought of use to others, especially to the young, and of placing all his powers at the service of his fellow-men.

The great vivacity and earnestness of his nature could not, with all his self-mastery, be always restrained from too great vehemence and pertinacity in discussion, but irritation was rarely made obvious in words. His disinterested aims were cherished; his natural cheerfulness he cultivated as a part of the requirements of manliness and kindness, and of religion; therefore, though he was often disposed to be anxious, and to exercise great caution in the affairs of daily life, he was never depressed or discontented. When inevitable trouble or annoyance came,

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
New England (United States) (1)

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
George Ticknor (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: