Some Thoughts Concerning Education
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Some Thoughts Concerning Education is a 1693 treatise on the education of gentlemen written by the English philosopher John Locke. For over a century, it was the most important philosophical work on education in England.

Some Thoughts Concerning Education

John Locke

With Introduction and Notes
the Rev. R. H. Quick, M.A.

Some Thoughts Concerning Education

Doctrina vires promovet insitas,
cultus pectora roborant:
defecere mores,
bene nata culpa.

Hor. Lib. iv. Od. 4.


The Germans, who hitherto have had the history of education in their own hands, have uniformly attributed an important part in it to one Englishman and one only the philosopher Locke; and their first well-known historian, F. H. Ch. Schwarz, has asserted that “modern pedagogy is more or less directly [a safe form of statement] the pedagogy of Locke. Die Pädagogik und Didaktik der neuen Zeit ist die Lockèsche, mehr oder iveniger folgerecht(quoted by Herbart, Päd. Schriften ii. 329 in Beyer’s Bibliothek). But so little has been thought of education in this country that our one classic has never been carefully edited, and has now been for some time “out of print.” An inquiring student was lately told that the only edition obtainable was the Tauchnitz. I have no doubt there are American editions; the whole work is certainly to be found in Henry Barnard’s English Pedagogy; but our booksellers have not as yet had the enterprise or the good fortune of Columbus.

It has lately occurred to at least two committees at once that an English edition was wanted. There has been much talk about education of late years; and at length people are beginning to perceive that some thought about it and study of it may be desirable. The University of Cambridge has gone so far as to institute an examination, so that for the future there will be some young teachers who will find it useful to read the chief English classic connected with their profession. This is, I suppose, the reason why new editions, two at least, appear about the same time. The National Society’s edition is to be edited by the Rev. Evan Daniel. Unfortunately neither Canon Daniel nor I knew of the other’s work till too late, or we should have avoided even the appearance of rivalry.

On examining the text I found that many errors had crept into the only complete editions, i.e. the editions published after Locke’s death. The best text is that of the Works in 3 vols. folio, issued in 1714 by Locke’s own bookseller, Churchill. But this is by no means faultless. It even gives a wrong date (1690 instead of 1693) at the foot of the Epistle Dedicatory. I have corrected many inaccuracies, but I fear not all.

Hallam speaks of Locke’s “deficiencies of experience,” but neither Hallam nor anyone else could have known before the publication of Mr Fox Bourne’s Life what Locke’s experience was. I have endeavoured in the biographical introduction to put before the reader all that we now can learn about it.

Locke’s study of medicine is no doubt an advantage to the ordinary reader, but it is decidedly the reverse to the ordinary editor. However, I have turned this weak part of the notes into a particularly strong one, by getting the help of Dr J. F. Payne, Fellow of Magdalen College Oxford, Assistant Physician and Lecturer at St Thomas’s Hospital. Dr Payne tells us what the science of the nineteenth century has to say to Locke’s advice; and his notes are the more interesting from his having made a special study of the history of medicine.

Locke showed the interest he took in the Thoughts by adding to the editions which came out in his life-time, and by leaving fresh matter which was added after his death. The original work was not more than two-thirds the size of the present. I have given a table from which the student may see what the original work was. Some of the most important passages in the book, e.g. the attack on the public schools, do not belong to it.

R. H. Q.

Trin. Coll. Cam.,
March 19th, 1880.

Preface to the Second Edition

Since the first Cambridge edition of the Thoughts came out four years ago, Locke has received much attention both at home and abroad. I will here mention the chief works bearing on the Thoughts which have since been published.

Canon Daniel’s edition was I believe before mine, but by a few days only. In preparing this reissue I have resisted the temptation to have recourse to his book. Readers who can refer to it will find great assistance, especially from the notes on Locke’s language.

Had Dr Fowler’s account of Locke’s life (English Men of Letters, Locke. Macmillans) been given us a little earlier, I probably should not have prefixed one to this work. Dr Fowler’s description of Locke’s later years will be found especially in teresting: and these I have said little about. Our plans and objects differed, and I have dwelt chiefly on Locke’s connexion with education. I am no doubt likely to exaggerate his importance as an educational writer; but according to Dr Fowler, Locke himself, and indeed all Europe, have fallen into the same error. But if Dr Fowler makes little of Locke the educationist, Professor Fraser in the Encyclopedia Britannica (Locke), makes nothing at all.

On the Continent Locke is still reckoned among the great educational reformers; and, as M. Compayré tells us, Leibnitz considered the Thoughts concerning Education a more important book than the Essay on the Human Understanding. Several continental writers have lately treated of Locke, especially as an educationist. I wish I had known of M. Marion’s very interesting sketch of Locke’s life (F. Locke, sa vie et son æuvre. Paris, 1878) when I wrote on the same subject in 1880. M. Gabriel Compayré (who is now the historian of education for those who do not read German, and for some who do also) has published a French translation of the Thoughts (Quelques Pensées, &c. Paris, Hachette, 1882) with Introduction and notes. In these he seems to me to appreciate Locke more highly and more justly than he has done in his greater work Les Doctrines d’Education (Hachette, 2 vols.) .

The only genuine attempt I have seen to find the true connexion between Locke’s thoughts on philosophy and on education is in a little book by Herr Wilhelm Gitschmann, Die Paedagogik des John Locke (Koethen, Schettler, 1881). Herbart’s is the philosophy now influential on education in Germany, and Locke is judged by Herr Gitschmann from this latest standpoint.

Perhaps I should say a word on the conclusions to which the study of the books named, and also further acquaintance with Locke, have brought me. Sir William Hamilton (quoted in a good article on Locke in Edinburgh Review, vol. 99, April 1854) says: “Locke is of all philosophers the most figurative, ambiguous, vacillating, various and even contradictory.” To hear Locke spoken of as an ambiguous writer, is to say the least of it somewhat startling; but figurative he is; and if a small man may presume to judge a great, I should say he sometimes allowed a figure to run away with him and carry him further than his reason would have led him without the metaphor. But perhaps this appearance of being vacillating, various and even contradictory arises in part from his efforts to get at the exact truth of the matter in hand, and not to bolster up anything previously asserted either by himself or any one else. He very much over-estimates, as it seems to me, the power of the individual intellect to get at truth in everything without even inquiring what had been thought and said by others. He goes so far as to maintain to his friend Molyneux that two honest men who would be at the pains to consider a matter of speculation could not possibly differ. And when he had grown old he lamented in a passage of singular pathos that he had wasted his time in “thinking as every man thinks.” And yet if ever man’s thought had not been content with the road-way it was Locke’s. Of the great “Essay” and his doctrines about the mind he writes to Stillingfleet “I must own to your Lordship they were spun barely out of my thoughts reflecting as well as I could on my own mind and the ideas I had there.” He is extremely contemptuous towards those who are as he says “learned in the lump by other men’s thoughts, and in the right by saying after others.” Herr Gitschmann then seems reasonable when he says that Locke’s chief importance in education arises from his revolt against custom and authority. Locke does indeed write for those “who dare venture to consult their own reason in the education of their children rather than wholly rely upon old custom” (Thoughts, ad f.). He ridicules those who let “custom stand for reason” (Th. § 164). But though use-and-won’t has had almost undisputed sway in the schoolroom, its authority has always been called in question by writers on education, and there were several of these even in England before Locke. Even schoolmasters (e.g. Mulcaster, Brinsly and Hoole in England and Rollin in France) cannot publish a book on the school course without suggesting many alterations; and writers who are not schoolmasters are almost always revolutionary. So a revolt against custom was no novelty first recommended by Locke.

But Locke’s estimate (exaggerated estimate as I think it) of the function of the reason led him to take a new view of education. Since the scholars of the Renascence found all wisdom and beauty as they thought in the ancient classics, education has been confounded with “learning” or “gaining knowledge.” But Locke’s notion of knowledge differed widely from the school master’s. According to him knowledge is “the internal perception of the mind” (L. to Stillingfleet. F. B. ii. 432). “Knowing is seeing; and if it be so, it is madness to persuade ourselves we do so by another man’s eyes, let him use ever so many words to tell us that what he asserts is very visible. Till we ourselves see it with our own eyes and perceive it by our own understandings, we are as much in the dark and as void of knowledge as before, let us believe any learned author as much as we will” (C. of U. § 24). So Locke in effect maintained that the knowledge of the schoolroom was no knowledge at all, and he despised it accordingly. Yet he did not entirely give it up. His disciple Rousseau did so. Childhood and youth he would have quite differently treated. The child’s education is to be mainly physical and no instruction is to be given till the age of 12. This at first sight seems in striking contrast with Locke’s advice; but there is a deep connexion between the two which is not usually observed. If nothing be accounted knowledge which is not gained by the perception of the reason, knowledge is quite beyond the reach of children. What then can the educator do for them? He can prepare them for the age of reason by caring (1st) for their physical health, and (2nd) for the formation of good habits. Among good habits industry holds a prominent place, and the chief use of schoolroom studies is to cultivate industry. This is certainly a new notion about learning; and that it was Locke’s his own words prove: “The studies which [the governor] sets [the child] upon are but as it were the exercises of his faculties and employment of his Time, to keep him from sauntering and idleness, to teach him application, and accustom him to take pains, and to give him some little taste of what his own Industry must perfect” (Thoughts, § 94, p. 75 ad f.). Thus children are prepared only for intellectual education, and when he is old enough for that education every youth and young man must be his own teacher. Locke has indeed written a book on intellectual education, but this is not the Thoughts — it is the Conduct of the Understanding.

R. H. Q.

Sedbergh Vicarage, Yorkshire,
Jan. 23, 1884.


Biographical and Critical

The philosopher, John Locke, was born at Pensford, a village six miles from Bristol, A. D. 1632. Though in bad health the greater part of his life he reached the age of 72, and died in the autumn of 1704. Of his early days we know little. He was not, like most great men, “his mother’s child.” Throughout his life the reason seems to have encroached in him on the affections; and this we may attribute to the absence of female influence. We know nothing of his mother, and all that he told his friend, Lady Masham, about her was that she was “a pious woman and affectionate mother.” The family consisted of John, the first child, and Thomas, born five years later. There were no other children, and the mother may have died young. The father was the ruling spirit, and in those troubled times he was a stirring man abroad as well as at home. A lawyer by profession he took up arms in the cause of the Parliament, and so became “Captain Locke.”

The Captain used his influence with the victorious party to get his son into Westminster School, and thither the boy, who had till then been brought up at home, was transplanted at the age of fourteen (1646). Here he remained till he was twenty, when he gained a Junior Studentship at Christ Church, Oxford. Where was our Westminster scholar, a lad of seventeen, when Charles I. was gazing from the scaffold on the crowd which reached almost to the school-gates? In after years the philosopher found great fault with the ordinary school course. “Non vitæ sed scholtz discimus,” he said, quoting Seneca. But at Westminster in his day, life with its fierce passions and grim tragedies came too near the school-room to be neglected for Latin concords and quantities. Locke at least never became absorbed by his school learning; nor was he in his right element either at Westminster or Oxford. In his day the rod was wielded by Dr Busby, who must have seemed indeed Dictator perpehius, for he was headmaster from 1638 to 1695, a space of 57 years. Under him Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and even Arabic, were the studies of the place; for Evelyn writes, nine years after Locke gained his studentship: “I heard and saw such exercises at the election of scholars at Westminster School to be sent to the University, in Latin, Greek, Hebrew, and Arabic, in themes and extemporary verses as wonderfully astonished me in such youths, some of them not above twelve or thirteen years of age. Pity it is that what they attain here so ripely they either do not retain or do not improve more considerably when they come to be men, though many of them do.” (F. B. i. 21.) We gather from this passage that Locke was far above the average age when elected. He had enjoyed those later years at school which generally leave behind pleasant memories; but no such memories remained with him. He ridicules the notion that a public school affords a good preparation for life; and we see his general impression of school-life in these words: “How any one’s being put into a mixed herd of boys, and there learning to wrangle at trap or rook at span-farthing, fits him for civil conversation or business, I do not see.” (Infra, § 70 p. 48.) Perhaps, like another of Westminster’s most celebrated scholars a hundred years afterwards, the poet Cowper, Locke was of a shy disposition and “not good at games.” Boys of this kind are not popular; and in a society where public opinion is as powerful as it is at school, the unpopular can hardly by any possibility be happy.

Some of Locke’s contemporaries, South, e.g., and Dryden, found the art of wrangling useful in after life, and in business very different from trap; but Locke always maintained that the aim of disputants should be to arrive at truth; so the art of arguing for party purposes, or for mere personal triumph, an art in those days begun at school and carried to great perfection at the University, was not according to the philosopher a desirable accomplishment.

Locke’s peculiar view of the object of disputation gave him a distaste for the logical course he was compelled to go through at Oxford. We are told that “he never loved the trade of disputing in public in the schools, but was always wont to declaim against it, as being invented for wrangling or ostentation rather than to discover truth.” However, he was not his own master for the first seven years of his residence at Oxford, and the discipline in the Puritan days was severe. Christ Church was not then so pleasant a place of residence for undergraduates as it has since become. Mr Fox Bourne gives us an account of an ordinary day’s work, which must astonish the modern student. Locke had to be in chapel at 5 a.m., when besides the prayers there was often a sermon. With an interval for breakfast his time was then taken up till midday dinner with attendance at the lectures of the Professors, or preparation for these lectures with the College tutor. At dinner no language might be spoken but either “Greek or Latin.” In the afternoon came another public lecture, and then the University deputations and declamations. In the evening he had again to attend chapel and afterwards to go to his tutor’s rooms for private prayers, and to give an account of his day’s occupations. This was his mode of life till he got his Bachelor’s degree in February, 1655.

Such a life must have been drudgery indeed to one who rebelled against the logic and the philosophy then in vogue. Locke’s opinion of Oxford logic may be seen in §§ 188, 189, of this work. As to the philosophy, he in after days complained to his friend Le Clerc that “he had lost a great deal of time at the commencement of his studies, because the only philosophy then known at Oxford was the Peripatetic, perplexed with obscure names and useless questions.” (F. B. i. p. 47.) Indeed he found so “little light brought to his understanding,” that he regretted his father had sent him to the University, as he began to fear that “his no greater progress in knowledge proceeded from his not being fitted or capacitated to be a scholar.” (Lady Masham, quoted by F. B. i. p. 47. See also infra § 166, p. 140, 11. 15 ff.)

Between taking his Bachelor’s and his Master’s degree Locke had still to attend University lectures; but he was free from his tutor, so he had some time at his own disposal. The discouragement he felt from his slow advance in the current philosophy “kept him from being any very hard student,” as he told Lady Masham, “and put him upon seeking the company of pleasant and witty men, with whom he likewise took great delight in corresponding by letters; and in conversation and these correspondences he spent for some years much of his time.” (F. B. p. 53.)

In 1660 John Locke the father died, and the elder son came into a small property. Of the younger son Thomas we know nothing, except that he died of consumption soon after the father. Locke had now taken his Master’s degree and obtained a Senior Studentship at Christ Church. He was friendly to the Restoration, and seems for a while to have overcome his dislike to the Oxford scheme of studies, for he became Tutor of his College and the College Reader in Greek and in Rhetoric. He no longer attributed the seeming obscurity of Oxford philosophy to his own want of penetration. He had studied Des Cartes, and without becoming his follower had found him perfectly intelligible. Locke had much in common with Des Cartes. Des Cartes had been as little satisfied with the learning he gained from the Jesuits at La Flèche, as Locke had been satisfied with the learning of Westminster and Oxford, and like Locke he had been driven to seek in society the wisdom he had not found in the schools. With the study of Des Cartes began Locke’s interest in philosophy, but it was many years before this turned him into an author.

He was now undecided about a profession. As a Senior Student of Christ Church he would in the ordinary course have taken Holy Orders; and such doubts as trouble many philosophic minds in these days were unknown to Locke, who speaks of the Bible with no less reverence than Luther himself. But he decided against becoming a clergyman, and for some time hesitated between the study of Medicine and public affairs. In 1665 he was appointed secretary to Sir Walter Vane, our ambassador to the Elector of Brandenburg, and he went with the ambassador to Cleve. In the amusing letters he wrote home to friends in England, we see that he was glad to escape from the life of an Oxford don. “When I left Oxford,” he says, “I thought for a while to take leave of all University affairs; but do what I can I am still kept in that track.” He then goes on to tell of some disputations of Franciscan monks at which he had been present. “The moderator was top-full of distinctions, which he produced with so much gravity and applied with so good a grace that ignorant I began to admire logic again, and could not have thought that simpliciter et secundum quid materialiler et formaliler had been such gallant things. * * The truth is, here hog-shearing is much in its glory, and our disputing in Oxford conies as far short of it as the rhetoric of Carfax does that of Billingsgate. But it behoves the monks to cherish this art of wrangling in its declining age, which they first nursed and sent abroad into the world to give it a troublesome idle employment.” (F. B. i. pp. 115, 116.)

We see in these letters that his mind was even then at work on questions of trade, the coinage and so forth, which he was in later years much concerned with. He especially ridicules the German coinage. A horseload of turnips, says he; would fetch two horseload of money.

This mission over, he was offered diplomatic service in Spain; but he declined it, and returned to Oxford. He was not ambitious, and perhaps he found that his health would not stand the wear and tear of public life. His settled conviction was that “amidst the troubles and vanities of this world, there are but two things that bring a real satisfaction with them, that is virtue and knowledge.” (F. B. i. p. 134; cfr. ii. p. 304, 11. 13 ff.) Oxford offered him great advantages for the calm pursuit of knowledge, especially for investigations in physical subjects, for which a kind of school had been formed by his friend Boyle. So he gave up diplomacy for medicine; but an accident soon connected him again with public affairs and with education.

Many great men, as Horace tells us, are unknown to fame because no sacred poet has been found to confer immortality on them. Conversely many men who were not great can never be forgotten because they are the subjects and indeed the victims of celebrated epigrams. The Earl of Chatham who waited for Sir Richard Strachan and for whom Sir Richard waited, is as little likely to have his fame obscured as his illustrious father. But after all it is rather the name than the man who is remembered in such cases; and so it is with Dryden’s “Achitophel,” the first Lord Shaftesbury. His name is known to everyone, but the man himself is known only to his biographer, Mr Christie, and the few students of history who have patience to read a large book about him. Everyone else forms a notion of him from Dryden and Macaulay. Dryden was a professedly party skirmisher and knew that he was not writing history. Macaulay in this and in other instances thought he was writing history when he was merely expanding an epigram. That Shaftesbury’s is not a name which deserves to be “by all succeeding ages cursed,” is almost proved by the fact that Locke knew him intimately and esteemed him very highly. An accident led to Locke’s introduction to Shaftesbury, then Lord Ashley, at Oxford, in 1666. Ashley saw at once that Locke was no ordinary doctor, and he found such pleasure in his society that he contrived to attach him to his family in an undefined position, partly as physician partly as friend. Locke at this time did not shrink from responsibility as a doctor. Lord Ashley was suffering from an internal tumour caused by a fall from his horse. Locke undertook the delicate operation of drawing off the matter by inserting a silver tube. The operation was successful, and Lord Ashley believed himself indebted for his life to his friend and physician.

In this family, duties still more delicate devolved on the philosopher. He had great influence over the lives of the first three earls. Of these the first was “Achitophel” of whom I have just spoken; the second, a man of no further distinction than his title gave him, was indebted to Locke partly for his education and entirely for his wife. The third Lord Shaftesbury, the author of the Characteristics, was educated according to Locke’s advice during the lifetime of the grandfather, though he was afterwards sent by his father to Westminster School. From the literary lord we get the following particulars: “When Mr Locke first came into the family my father was a youth of about 15 or 16. Him my grandfather intrusted wholly to Mr Locke for what remained of his education. He was an only child, and of no firm health, which induced my grandfather, in concern for his family, to think of marrying him as soon as possible.” (F. 13. i. p. 203.) The task of selecting a wife was left entirely to Locke, who seems to have had plenty of moral courage, though it has been hinted that he was not remarkable for his physical courage. He went to Belvoir and “arranged a marriage” with Lady Dorothy Manners, daughter of the Duke of Rutland, a lady who although only twenty at the time of the wedding was three years older than her husband. (See infra § 216, p. 187, 11. 3 ff.)

But before giving an account of Locke’s employments in the family of Lord Shaftesbury, I should mention a habit he had already formed at Oxford, the habit of writing out, for his own eye only, his thoughts on subjects which particularly interested him. This practice he continued through life, and in his old age (6 Apr. 1698) he writes to his friend Molyneux: “I have often had experience that a man cannot well judge of his own notions till either by setting them down in paper or in discoursing them to a friend, he has drawn them out and, as it were, spread them fairly before himself.” When he left Oxford for the family of Lord Ashley in 1667 many MSS. were already in existence, some of which were worthier of publication than his verses, the only things of Locke’s printed before the year 1686. The following, which his first biographer, Lord King, gives among his Miscellaneous Papers, was probably written early, and is interesting as showing Locke’s theory of life.

“Thus I think:

“It is a man’s proper business to seek happiness and avoid misery.

“Happiness consists in what delights and contents the mind, misery in what disturbs, discomposes, or torments it.

“I will therefore make it my business to seek satisfaction and delight, and avoid uneasiness and disquiet; to have as much of the one and as little of the other as may be.

“But here I must have a care I mistake not; for if I prefer a short pleasure to a lasting one, it is plain I cross my own happiness.

“Let me then see wherein consists the most lasting pleasure of this life, and that as far as I can observe is in these things:

“1st. Health, — without which no sensual pleasure can have any relish.

“2nd. Reputation, — for that I find everybody is pleased with, and the want of it is a constant torment.

“3rd. Knowledge, — for the little knowledge I have, I find I would not sell at any rate, nor part with it for any other pleasure.

“4th. Doing good, — for I find the well-cooked meat I eat to-day does now no more delight me, nay, I am diseased after a full meal. The perfumes I smelt yesterday now no more affect me with any pleasure. But the good turn I did yesterday, a year, seven years since, continues still to please and delight me as often as I reflect on it.

“5th. The expectation of eternal and incomprehensible happiness in another world is that also which carries a constant pleasure with it.

“If then I will faithfully pursue that happiness I propose to myself, whatever pleasure offers itself to me I must carefully look that it cross not any of those five great and constant pleasures above mentioned.

“All innocent diversions and delights as far as they will contribute to my health and consist with my improvement, condition, and any other more solid pleasures of knowledge and reputation, I will enjoy, but no farther; and this I will carefully watch and examine — that I may not be deceived by the flattery of a present pleasure to lose a greater.” (Lord King’s Life of Locke, 1829, PP. 304 ff.)

While in Lord Ashley’s family in London Locke was in frequent intercourse with the great physician, Sydenham. The traditional learning of the doctors pleased Locke as little as the traditional learning of the schoolmasters or the University professors; and he and Sydenham set about applying Baconian principles to the study of medicine. Among his MSS. was found, with the heading De Arte Medica, a brilliant onslaught on the habit of being guided by hypotheses. “The beginning and improvement of useful arts and the assistances of human life,” so he writes, “have all sprung from industry and observation.” But “Man, still affecting something of a deity, laboured to make his imagination supply what his observation failed him in; and when he could not discover the principles and courses and methods of Nature’s workmanship, he would needs fashion all those out of his own thought, and make a world to himself, framed and governed by his own intelligence.” (F. B. i. p. 225.) Thus it had come to pass that the most acute and ingenious part of men were by custom and education engaged in empty speculations. The point that Locke urges with great emphasis is that these speculations whether true or not are useless. “The notions that have been raised into men’s heads by remote speculative principles, though true, are like the curious imagery men sometimes see in the clouds which they are pleased to call the heavens; which though they are for the most part fantastical, and at best but the accidental contexture of a mist, yet do really hinder sight, and shadow the prospect; and though these painted apparitions are raised by the sun and seem the genuine offspring of the great fountain of light, yet they are really nothing but darkness and a cloud; and whosoever shall travel with his eye fixed on these, ’tis ten to one goes out of his way” (p. 224). Hence little good had come of learning, and “he that could dispute learnedly of nutrition, concoction and assimilation, was beholden yet to the cook and the good housewife for a wholesome and savoury meal” (225, 226). The ordinary learning deserved not the name of knowledge. “They that are studiously busy in the cultivating and adorning such dry barren notions are vigorously employed to little purpose; and might with as much reason have retrimmed, now they are men, the babies they made when they were children as exchanged them for those empty impracticable notions that are but the puppets of men’s fancies and imaginations, which however dressed up are after 40 years’ dandling but puppets still, void of strength, use or activity” (p. 226).

We see here the principles on which Locke doctored in Lord Ashley’s family. He cut himself completely adrift from the ordinary methods, so much so indeed that in the Dedication to Lord Ashley which Locke wrote for Sydenham’s book on Small-pox, Locke feels that he ought to stand on the defensive. “At least, my lord,” he writes, “I thought it reasonable to let you see that I had practised nothing in your family but what I durst own and publish to the world; and let my countrymen see that I tell them nothing here but what I have already tried with no ill success on several in the family of one of the greatest and most eminent personages amongst them.” (F. 13. i. 232.)

What Locke’s educational practice was we can only infer from this book of Thoughts written some 20 years later; but Locke was no more attached (as we have seen) to the established system in education than in medicine, and he no doubt innovated with equal boldness in both (cfr. F. B. ii. 11. 13 ff.). The second Lord Shaftesbury turned out a stronger man in body than was expected, but Locke’s hardening system was not tried upon him as a child; and he was married while still a youth. In this case Locke secured at best only one of his desiderata: the mens sana was wanting in corpore sano.

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