The Parents' Review

A Monthly Magazine of Home-Training and Culture

Edited by Charlotte Mason.

"Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life."

Volume 2, no. 2, 1891/92, pg. 951-952

"En hoexkens ende boexkens."

Holy Gladness. Words by Edward Oxenford, music by Sir John Stainer. Sir John Stainer's name speaks for the tunes; illustrations very lovely; an exquisite gift book for the little ones. Words and thoughts and pictures and tunes pointing the children gently heavenwards.

       "Thou, O Lord, hast stood beside us
       Through the darkness of the night"

is framed in a wreath of passion-flowers, and faces two sweet maidens singing their morning hymn, the warm young life in their complexions and garments showing out against the darkness of the organ. (Griffith, Farran, and Co.)

Hearts and Voices. Songs of the Better Land. Another quite delightful treasure for the little ones. Sunday book, we were going to say, but only because Sunday should have the best books. Here we have the very sweetest of the children's hymns: "My God who makes the sun to know," "I think when I read," "A little ship was on the sea," "We are but little children weak," "There's a Friend for little children," "Once in royal David's city," "Hush, my dear, lie still and slumber," "Now the day is over," in large and lovely type, with head-pieces and tail-pieces, angels, flowers, children, exquisite coloured illustrations, real works of art, facing each hymn. A little boy and girl with holy-child faces watching a "little ship" sailing on a blue summer sea, and plainly talking, as they watch, of the little ship in their morning's hymn. (Griffith, Farran, and Co.)

The Next Thing Series (Griffith, Farran, and Co.). A series of capital little books, six at sixpence each and six at threepence each, some of them written with a good deal of literary power and all with a good deal of practical purpose. In the dearth of any attempt to teach homely everyday morals, we must give a hearty welcome to these little books, where the moral is so well carried in the story that you think it is all jam and no powder. The tales are for the most part of cottage life or servant life; but the reader is not offended by a de haut en bas tone; they are not written to teach the reader how to behave to her betters, but how to behave to her own sweetheart or sister or mother; in every case the characters are natural, the tale is natural, and the moral is not weighted with goody-goody sentiment. Shoulder to Shoulder, by Lanoe Falconer, is, as its second title states, a tale of love and friendship, and very pleasing and wholesome reading it is. A Golden Silence, by Mrs. Powell, introduces you to a really pleasant acquaintance in Leonora Baines, who gives up a post as parlourmaid because she finds she has been unwise in repeating table-talk, but know how to hold her tongue wisely when hasty words would have made a breach with the young man to whom she is engaged. The Work of a Witch is a fearsome tale of the troubles a young girl brings on herself because she thinks she knows a witch with an evil eye. With None to Help is a most touching tale of the loneliness and helplessness of workhouse girls in their first places. We cannot particularise further; but the mistress of a household may, with confidence, add The Next Thing Series to her servants' library.

Twice Four. Stories by G. Nesbit, Mrs. Gillie, Mrs. Weber, Mrs. Worthington Bliss, Theo. Gift, Miss Edwards, Mrs. Patchett Martin, Rowe Lingstone. Illustrations lovely; truly illustrations of the stories, with all the charms of perfect colouring and graceful drawing; art studies; delightful for elder children to copy, and for the little ones to gaze at. There is Katie, with her basket "filled high with big, pale primroses tied up in bunches," and Dulcibelle Marjorie, the artist's child, with "her frock just like a dress, all white and down to her feet! and her shoes and her sash the colour of her eyes;" and the shepherd's daughter, with her collie and her face ruddy with open air, loving and wise, with the forethought of a child who has to think and care for others. As for the stories, the names of the authors are a guarantee of their literary quality. We will only say they are thoroughly wholesome; no morbidness, no self-consciousness; pleasant, or deeply interesting episodes in child-life; but wholesomely told, always with a moral bearing, but a moral which is the natural outcome of the tale, and requires no tedious application; a delightful gift-book. The "Black and White" illustrations are very graceful. Here, for example, are the "morals" to Rosie's Dream":--

       The story teaches us these morals:
       Take, while you may, life's duties lightly;
       Don't strive to shine where'er you go;
       Don't poke your nose in other's quarrels;
       Don't be afraid of seeming so.
       Sneer not at other people's weakness,
       Deserved reproof receive with meekness;
       Don't pause where promptness may avail,
       And never suddenly, nor tightly
       Seize tabby kittens by the tail. (Griffith, Farran, and Co.)

[There are 8 stories in "Twice Four:" Finding a Sister by E. Nesbit, Dulcie's Lantern by Theo Gift, The Squire's Daughter by Alice Weber, Rosie's Dream by Rowe Lengston, Dolly by J. Worthington Bliss, Mother and Sister by C. S. Edwards, The Shepherd's Daughter by Mrs. Patchett Martin, Soho Sophy by Mrs. Geller.]

Max Pauli. Circumstances combine against "Max Pauli." In the first place, the introduction of new matter, especially of the "Children's Hour" papers, into our next volume makes it impossible to give the necessary space to a serial tale. In the next place, the author confides an open secret--that "Max Pauli" is Frederick Perthes, the celebrated German bookseller; "but," says he, "while the youth of Perthes may, with advantage, be studied under a slight veil of fiction, his manhood is passed in the thick of great events, in close intercourse with great persons, and the story-teller is hardly free to take liberties with historical personages and events. Moreover, it is the youth of Perthes, not his manhood, that should be profitable to the readers of the Parents' Review. Just so, did this young man struggle and endeavour himself a hundred years ago; just so, do many young men and young women labour to-day in the making of character and destiny: history repeats itself; the very problems that occupied the mind of Pauli (and Perthes) a hundred years ago are the problems against which many young minds are beating their wings to-day, and it is well that their elders should know something of what goes on behind the insouciance of sunny young faces."

Is any reader interested enough to care to know how "Max" came out of the often agonising conflict of his thoughts? He (that is, Perthes) married Caroline, the daughter of Claudius, a man of holy and simple life and a leader of Evangelical Christian thought. Few German wives and mothers are held in more honoured memory by their countrywomen than Caroline Perthes, and her husband welcomed her spiritual influence; Perthes revered the character of his father-in-law, also, and laid himself open to his teaching. He received Christianity as the only possibly solution of the problems of life; but he received it without ardour; he seemed to have spent himself upon many enthusiasms, and it was not for him to say, with Tholuck, "I have only one passion--Jesus Christ." You cannot "eat your cake and have it" in things spiritual.

[I was unable to locate even one of these texts online. -- LNL]

Typed by Samantha, Aug 2023; Proofread by LNL, Oct. 2023