Page:Proposals Relating to the Education of Youth in Pensilvania (UC) - Benjamin Franklin (1931 1749).djvu/27

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Proposals, &c.


The good Education of Youth has been esteemed by wise Men in all Ages, as the surest Foundation of the Happiness of both private Families and of Common-wealths. Almost all Governments have therefore made it a principal Object of their Attention, to establish and endow with proper Revenues, such Seminaries of Learning, as might supply the succeeding Age with Men qualified to serve the Publick with Honour to themselves, and to their Country.

  1. As some Things here propos'd may be found to differ a little from the Forms of Education in common Use, the following Quotations are to shew the Opinions of several learned Men, who have carefully considered and wrote expresly on the Subject; such as Milton, Locke, Rollin, Turnbull, and others. They generally complain, that the old Method is in many Respects wrong; but long settled Forms are not easily changed. For us, who are now to make a Beginning, 'tis, at least, as easy to set out right as wrong; and therefore their Sentiments are on this Occasion well worth our Consideration.

    Mr. Rollin says (Belles Lett. p. 249. speaking of the Manner of Educating Youth) "Though it be generally a very wise and judicious Rule to avoid all Singularity, and to follow the received Customs, yet I question whether, in the Point we now treat of, this Principle does not admit of some Exception, and