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By her influence a fearful conquest was obtained over him; for he ate with a distinct recognition of the consequences. Eve shamefully dishonoured the Most High, by her act of disobedience: Adam impiously defied Him. She regarded the Lord as a man, that he should lie: as one who had spoken, but would not do it. She showed herself pre-eminently a fool in crediting the extravagant falsehood, that He who had created her husband out of the dust of the earth and herself out of a bone of that dust-born body, was afraid of their attaining to a rivalry with Him by eating the fruit of a certain tree. The pride of carnal reason too often conquers faith ; but here was an instance of presumptuous folly overpowering both. Eve was a help meet for Adam, in his sweet task of dressing and keeping the garden, in the exercise of continual prayer and praise, and in all the happy employments of his blissful lot; but with this

sad proof of her extreme instability before us, we had better refrain from speculating on the subject of her supposed equality with man, in the higher powers of their common nature.

Indeed, all that we know of the paradisaical state is comprised in so brief an outline as to render it a marvel how people can venture on the bold conjectures that are gravely put forth, or the still bolder assertions that are rashly hazarded. We greatly lack that wisdom which does not desire to go beyond what is written. Our business, alas ! is, and must be, with humanity in its fallen state, of which alone we can safely predicate anything on the grounds either of history, observation, or experience—the only available guides where revelation is silent. For woman as she is, we claim nothing, but in the capacity assigned to her in Scripture, " the weaker vessel ;" in which term we include the whole creature, mind, body,

and estate. To confine it to the body alone would clash with the obvious meaning of the same phrase, where the Lord designates Saul of Tarsus as a chosen vessel, to bear His name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel. Here Saul was certainly not spoken of in reference to his bodily powers alone, but to the whole man with all his mental faculties, all his natural and acquired gifts : his zeal, eloquence, intrepidity-everything that had rendered the persecutor so terrible, and which now, consecrated to the Lord's service, was to render the Apostle pre-eminently useful. then, contentedly bear our impressive designation as “the weaker vessel," and on it found the rights, that we may the more effectually show forth the wrongs, of wo

Let us,

man.

We must admit that, whether right or wrong, the difference everywhere observable in the mode of rearing boys and

girls, from the cradle, operates to the increased feebleness and dependency of the latter as compared with the former ; and except in the very lowest grade of the most despised among us, where, in an undistinguishable mass of wretchedness, barbarism and neglect, all are herded together, this rule will be found to obtain. Even in the very humblest of decent cottages, and on the forms of the Infantschool, we shall see the little girl's unshorn locks twisted up in papers, and her slight person adorned with some superfluous article of dress as an attempt at decoration, while her brother's cropped head, and freedom from all but indispensable clothing, leave him far more exposed to the bracing, hardening effects of the elements. Her employments too marked by a similar diversity. She must, with bent joints, and in a constrained position, ply the knitting or the sewing needle, during hours when his muscles

are

are at least free to exercise themselves, although, perhaps, under the comparative restraint of a school room : but when once set at liberty, he flies to the robust sports from which she is excluded : the wrestling, and hurling, and batting, swimming and rowing, that, under the full influence of an ever-changing climate, harden his sinews, expand his frame, and nerve him to future battle against the many ills that flesh is heir to; while she, limited to a moderate participation in some of the less violent exercises, daily enforces her itle to be considered more and more the weaker vessel.”

It will be perceived that we are speaking of the humble ranks in society. To them, indeed, we shall principally refer throughout; for there is comparatively little wrong to complain of on the part of their more refined neighbours. We might, and perhaps some day we may, point out certain grievances under which they also labour ;

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