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u adorn a woman.' Ah, my fair friends, how ata tractive and how happy might all of you be, were you effectually persuaded to form yourselves or such maxims; and what singular pleasure would it ailord the preacher, if by the blessing of God he might so persuade you.
Princes, it has been said, and young women seldom hear truth. It is a melancholy consideration. Flattery you have often heard, and sometimes, I doubt not, listened to. May He hope for your attention, whose character forbids him to flatter, and whose principles are equally averse to it? Nothing, I am convinced, can be more pernicious to your hest interest, than the adulation with which you are so early and so generally entertained. You will not look for it here. But be not afraid, on the other hand, of the bitterness of reproach, the bluntness of incivility. If any thing should appear harsh, be assured it proceedo from real regard. We would not willingly offend, we are naturally solicitous to please you; but we dare not promote your pleasure at the expense of your improvement. To tenderness and respect you are entitled: but certainly faithful and candid admonition is not incompatible with the latter; and of the former, if I be not mistaken, it is the truest proof.
The Almighty has thrown you upon the protection of our sex. To yours we are indebted on many accounts. He that abuses you dishonours his mother. Virtuous women are the sweeteners, the charm of human life. " A Virtuous Woman-her “ price is far above rubies.” This is not flattery ; it is just praise : and that every one of you may deserve such commendation, is my earnest prayer. Much, I am sure, depends on you. And this
shall be my First Point ; to which I will devote the present discourse, as a proper foundation for what is to follow. That I thus address you
particular, is principally owing to the idea I have formed of your consequence.
He that depreciates your sex is as unkind to society, as he is unjust to you. Yet to do so in your absence is, I am sorry to say, too common with many men; with those very men that soothe you to your faces, and are dupes to your smiles. Is this either man. ly 'r fair
Because there are foolish and vicious wa Ben, does it follow that there are hardly any other? Were such an opinion to prevail generally, whs, wculd become of human kind? Were so ungracious a system once established, is there not reason to fear, it would soon grow to be too well founded? The world, we know, is mightily influenced by reputation. Applause incites and animates; contempt has the contrary effect. A concern for character is, from their constitution, education and circumstances, particularly strong in women; in all but those who, having lost their native honours, have with them lost their sense of shame ; an infamy to which they would have hardly descended, had they not first sunk in their own estimation.
That admired maxim of heathen antiquity, « Reverence thyself," seems to be peculiarly proper
for a woman. She that does not reverence herself must not hope to be respected by others. I would therefore remind you of your own value. By encouraging you to entertain a just esteein of yourselves, I would on one hand guard you against every thing degrading, and on the other awaken your ambition to act up to the best standard of
your sex: to aspire at every amiable, every noble quality that is adapted to your state, or that can insure the affection and preserve the importance to which you were born. Now this importance is very great, whether we consider you in your present single condition, or as afterwards connected in wedlock.
Considering you in your present single condition, I would begin where your duty in society begins, by putting you in mind how deeply your Parents are interested in your behaviour. For the sak of the argument, I suppose your Parents to be abre Those that have had the misfortune to be early 'e. prived of theirs, are commonly left to the code of some friend or guardian, who is understood to supply their place ; and to such my remarks on this head will not be altogether inapplicable. But I must likewise suppose that your parents deserve the name, that they are really coacáined for your virtue and welfare. Great God! are there then any of thy creatures so unnatural, as to neglect the culture and happiness of the children thou hast given them? Yes, and worse than to neglect it." Be astonished, • O ye heavens, at this !" There are beings called Parents, and Christian parents, who are at pains to introduce their unexperienced offspring to folly, to vice, to every practice that can plunge them in misery !-What, Mothers too, and mothers “ pro“ fessing godliness!” Is it possible that they can train up the fruit of their womb, their own daughters, to dishonour and destruction ? Alas! it is done every day, and passes unregarded. There is not perhaps in the whole science of female vanity, female luxury, or female falsehood, a single article that is not taught, and also exemplified, by those
Christian Mothers, to the poor young creatures whom every dictate of nature, as well as every principle of the gospel, should engage their parents to bring up in modesty, sobriety, and simplicity • of manners. What words can paint the guilt of such a conduct ?!! Are you
who now hear me blest with parents, that even in these times, and in this metropolis, where all the corruption and futility of these times are concentred, discover a zeal for your improvement and salvation? How thankful should you be for hr Inighty blessing! Would you show that you are thful? Do nothing to make them unhappy do
your power to give them delight. Ah, did you
cut know how much it is in your power to give them!But who can describe the transports of a breast truly parental, on beholding a daughter shoot up like 'some fair but modest flower, and acquire, day after ucre, fresh beauty and growing sweetness, so as to fill every eye with pleasure, and every heart with admiration ; while, like that same flower, she appears unconscious of her opening charms, and only rejoices in the sun that cheers, and the hand that shelters her? In this manner shall you, my lovely friends, repay most acceptably a part (you never can repay the whole) of that im. mense debt you owe for all the pains and fears formerly suffered, and for all the unutterable anxieties daily experienced on your account.
Perhaps you are the only daughter, perhaps the only child of your mother, and her a widow. All her cares, all her sensations point to you. Of the tenderness of a much loved and much-lamented
husband you are the sole remaining pledge. On you she often fixes her earnest melting eye; with watchful attention she marks the progress of your rising virtues; in every softened feature she fondly traces your
father's sense, your father's probity. Something within her whispers, you shall live to be the prop and comfort of her age, as you are now her eompanion and friend. Blessed Lord! what 'big emotions swell her labouring soul! But lest by venting them in your company, she should affect you too much, she silently withdraws to pour trom forth in tears of rapture ; a rapture only augmented by the sweetly-sad remembrance that minglese it, while at the same time it is exalted and consta ted doubly by ardent vows to heaven for your preservation and prosperity. Is there a young woman that can think of this with indifference? Is there a young woman that can reverse. the description, suppose herself the impiou Creature that could break a widowed mother's heart, and support the thought ?
When a daughter, it may be a favourite daughter, turns out unruly, foolish, wanton ; when she disobeys her parents, disgraces her education, dishonours her sex, disappoints the hopes she had raised; when she throws herself away on unworthy of her, or if disposed, yet by his or her situation unqualified to make her happy; what her parents in any of these cases must necessarily suffer, we may conjecture, they alone can feel.
The world, I know noi how, overlooks in our sex a thousand irregularities, which it never forgives in yours ; so that the honour and peace of a family are, in this view, much more dependent on