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feet, and nails four inches long on the left hand. Happily, the majority of brides are apparently women of normal dimensions, which shows that men do not marry girls distorted into the similitude of wasps and sand-glasses.
Disciplina is simply the Latin for the art of learning a thing, as doctrina is for the art or method of teaching others. If we want children to learn to obey sensible rules, we must first of all frame our rules rationally, with proper regard to God and Nature. The injustice of violating the essential conditions of health is injurious as well as absurd. Who could endure a world inhabited by children who know no play of a romping kind ? "The painted man who wears the stays" was an epithet applied by Tennyson to Bulwer Lytton as a return shot for the latter's sneer at "Miss Alfred." We all see the sting of the sarcasm, but only those who have known effeminate dandies can seen the venomous accuracy of our grand old Laureate's piercing arrow sent sheer home to the mark.
As an old tutor I have taught both boys and girls, and believe in the natural development of their minds and bodies, without unhealthy forcing or more unhealthy restriction. Were I to tell tales, I could point to a girl, never whipped in her life, as intellectually ripe as she is physically well nourished and proportioned-a woman ere she is quite sixteen. She obtained full marks at a girls' high school; is devout, modest, and affectionate at home, and has just taken honours in elementary chemistry. She wore no stays at all till she was fifteen, and if she lives seven years longer is certain to graduate, if she does not marry first. I thank those writers who have cried shame on the figure-trainers. Train children's morals, give proper rewards, right motives, and sensibly severe punishments, but remember all along body, mind, and spirit must each claim their due shares of attention in education.
" Squeers " was a broad caricature of an illiterate schoolmaster of an almost impossible type, written in the hope of exposing the frauds and cruelties which were conceivable as results from paying a miserably inadequate sum of money to an unprincipled man, who was represented as residing in a remote corner of Yorkshire, before the days of rail way travelling began.
" No extremes " was Aristotle's motto, and he wrote a treatise on conduct which ranks next to the Bible, and has been more studied by Christians than any other Pagan's wisdom in the practical consideration of what is or is not becoming to us as human beings. --Yours truly, W. B. PRATT.
Liverpool, September 12th.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE FAMILY DOCTOR.
SIR,-Permit me through your excellent paper to make a few suggestions for the improvement of girls' dress.
In dress reform there is more hope of success if no striking outward change is made. So it Shal be with my proposals, which might be extended to ladies' dress. Lightness of weight, allowing free movement of the limbs, yet affording sufficient warmth, must be striven after.
There seems no reason why a girl's neck and arms should be so thinly clad; let, then, the chemise be high in the neck and long in the sleeves. Of course, the ordinary low-necked one could be worn with a low-necked dress. Petticoats, as heavy and cumbersome, should be abolished. and cloth knickerbockers. reaching almost to the knee, worn in their stead. These would be much lighter, and answer every purpose that the former answer. (I once saw two girls who had no petticoats, but, instead, black silk knickerbockers.) If it were desired to hide the knickerbockers, and certainly whenever greater elegance of dress is wanted, ordinary white drawers, reaching below the knee, might be worn over them. Then there would be a frock reaching far enough - to cover the knickerbockers, but yet short enough to let the trimming of the white drawers peep out. For girls under ten, shoes and stockings would complete the costume. Girls at ten should be put into wellboned stays, which should be laced tightly enough to prevent stooping, and later on tightly enough to produce a waist of the desired size. For my part. I confess I like to see a well-grown girl with the slenderest of waists, nor should I object to English gentlemen lacing as tightly as are the Prussian officers, who are noted for their wasp waists. Of course, when desired, the frock could gradually become longer and longer.- Yours, &c ..
rather closely-laced corsets. which, as nlany people used to say, gave promise of very slim, tightly-laced figures. When they came out, their hands and corn· plexions were always carefully protected from injury from the sun or air. I have heard many people say, and agree most sincerely, that the -- girls were ag pretty a couple as one could see anywhere, the delicate combination of the dress of a young girl of thirteen or fourteen with the rather slender figures and confined waists and white and 80ft, but still girlish, hands and fair complexions of the sisters making them a very rare and lovely picture. Tjght lacing for a young girl does not look nice, and is bad for her health; but at seventeen or eighteen, when more "grown up" dresses are usually worn, and the maid gets instructions to draw in all the slack of the long silk lace, then she will begin to take pride in her tight-fitting stays and improved appearance.-I remain, your always constant reader, YOUNG STAY WEARER.
Brunswick-place, Brighton, Septemher 23.
EARRINGS FOR MEN.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE FAMILY DOCTOR.
SIR.-In connection with the interesting discussion now taking place in your columns on this suhject, I have just been infonned that the naval authorities of the United States and of France do not object to their seamen adopting this custom, On the contrary, it is said that when any of the sailor::; are found to suffer from any of the many affections of the eyes to which they are liable, the ship's-surgeon immediately resorts to ear-piercing.
In the French army, it is not unusual for soldiers to have their ears pierced, while the rnen cornposing the fishing fleet in Newfoundland invariably adopt this cm·tom. Many years ago I saw an English officer who was serving abroad whose ears had been pierced, but who only wore the ear wires while in bed, it being contrary to servi~e regulations for him t) wear them when on duty. This gentleman, who was learned in chelnistry as well as in the classical languages, had great faith in the wearing of earrings as a rernedy for weakness of the eyes. Thq,t one of such eminent ability should believe in this therapeutic remedy I have always considered a valuable testimonial to the benefit to be derived therefrom, - I am, Sir, yours, &c., P. KLEND KENSON. Fulton.
TO THE EDITOR OF THE FAMILY DOCTOR.
SIR,-I am glad to see from the letters in your valuable paper that there is a de~dre for greater accuracy in the piercing of ears. To me there is nothing more ugly than an earring inserted into a hole which is far from being properly centred, for it takes away from the symmetry of the ear. At the same time. an unpierced ear seems to want something, and even if no earring is worn, an accurately-vlaced hole adds to the beauty of the ear. Since I have borne in my ears the marks of my vanity my friends h'1.ve been curious that a strong-minded woman like myself, and of an uncertain age, should have allowed herself to submit to the ear-piercer, and I have examined a large number of ears, and pierced not a few in the last few months. It is my duty in life to have a nun1ber of girls under my charge, and mothers frequently have ~aid to me. "I wish my daughter to wear earrings. If she suggests it, you may have them done." On the other Land, others have said. H My daughters are not on any account to have their ears pierced," and of courRe I do not interfere with their wishes. As I do not lay myself out as an ear-piercer, and naturally only deal with those with whom I am personally acquainted, I give your readers the benefit of my limited experience. After having my own ears pierced I had a chat with my jeweller, and learnt the details of the proces~. I then watched him closely a!? he pierced two or three of Iny girls, and then procured a piercer. It is the same as has been described in your paper. It is a stout sharp-pointed needle, over which is a closely-fitting tube. The needle and tube pass through the lobe, the needle is withdrawn, the wire passed into the tube and both withdrawn, leaving the ear- wire in the ear. An examination of the ears of my friends showed me that a heavy earring in a small thin lobe splits it, but does not enlarge and lengthen it as in a thick, fat lobe. A friend of tnine goes so far as to cover her lobes with indiarubber plaster at night to vrevent their being dragged out of shape. My met}-~od of piercing has been this. I have a thick pure gold ear-wue three-eighths of an inch in diameter. This I clasp on the ear and press it slightly, so that it leaves a mark in the exact centre to guide me. I then put a little glycerine on the needle and, supporting the ear on a broad piece of cork, pierce at the exact spot. The ring is also rubbed with glycerine and goes into the hole quite eaflily. I bathe the ears two or three times a day with warm water, and at night put a little touch of cotton wool moistened with glycerine at front and back. After three or four days the hole has healed. I remove the ~old wire, which. I should say, is nearly double the thickness of the ordinary ones, and replace it by an ordinary wire. In a fortnight or thrpe weeks the hole has hardened, and the only notieable thing i~ that it is slightly dark compared with a hole that has been made for some months. I do not allow my girls to wear anything but wires for, at any rate, the first two months. The pure gold wires are always carefully washed, and are kept in glycerine till they are required again. If the ear is a thick one, I use a thicker needle than the ordinary one. for the fat seeIns to close up the hole. Sometimes I have pierced only one ear at a time till the girl has asked to have the other one done. Two girls whose ears were pierced at their mother's request refused to continue to wear them. I told them the fi~~s would require to rema:in in til~ t~e ~oles ~adImage:TheFamilyDoctorOct5_1889page88.png
to "Governess No. 2"; from Young Stay Wearer.
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