Page:The Daughters of England.djvu/63
THE DAUGHTERS OF ENGLAND.
I should be sorry to treat with irreverence or disrespect, because it has weight with some of the most serious and estimable of their sex. I mean the plea of being thus enabled to read the Scriptures in the original. Now, if such young ladies have really nothing better to do, or if from the high order of their natural capabilities they have a chance, even the remotest, of being able to throw some additional light upon our best translations, far be it from me to wish to put the slightest obstacle in their way. Yet, I own it does appear to me a little strange, that after considering the length of time required for attaining a sufficient knowledge of these languages, and the number of learned commentators and divines, who have spent the best part of their valuable lives, in labouring to ascertain the true meaning of the language of the Scriptures, and when the result of those labours is open to the public, it does appear to me a little strange, that any young woman, of moderate abilities, should enter the field with such competitors, in the hope of attaining a nearer approach to the truth than they have done; and I have been led to question, whether it would not be quite as well for such individuals to be content to take the Bible as it is, and to employ the additional time, they would thus become possessed of, in disseminating its truths and acting out its principles, so far as they have already been made clear to the humblest understanding.
These remarks, however, have especial reference to moderate abilities; because there is with some persons a peculiar gift for the acquisition of languages; and believing, as I do, that no gift is bestowed in vain, I would not presume to question the propriety of such young persons spending at least some portion of their lives, in endeavouring to acquire the power of doing for themselves, what has already been done for them.It is a remarkable phenomenon in our nature, that some