Page:Letters to Mothers (1839).djvu/22

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"My cousin Mary of Scotland, hath a fair son born unto her, and I am but a dead tree," said Queen Elizabeth, while the scowl of discontent darkened her brow. In bequeathing your own likeness to the world, you will naturally be anxious to array it in that beauty of virtue, which fades not at the touch of time. What a scope for your exertions, to render your representative, an honour to its parentage, and a blessing to its country.

You have gained an increase of power. The influence which is most truly valuable, is that of mind over mind. How entire and perfect is this dominion, over the unformed character of your infant. Write what you will, upon the printless tablet, with your wand of love. Hitherto, your influence over your dearest friend, your most submissive servant, has known bounds and obstructions. Now, you have over a new-born immortal, almost that degree of power which the mind exercises over the body, and which Aristotle compares to the "sway of a prince over a bond-man." The period of this influence must indeed pass away; but while it lasts, make good use of it.

Wise men have said, and the world begins to believe, that it is the province of woman to teach. You then, as a mother, are advanced to the head of that profession. I congratulate you. You hold that license which authorizes you to teach always. You have attained that degree in the College of Instruc-