Titel: Hints and questions for the use of candidates, lower instruction English
Auteur: Hoog, W. de
Uitgave: Dordrecht: J.P. Revers, 1890 *
Auteursrechten: Zie auteursrechten
Citeerinstructie: Bijzondere Collecties van de Universiteit van Amsterdam, UBM: Obr. 4878
Onderwerp: Taal- en letterkunde naar afzonderlijke talen: Engelse taalkunde
Trefwoord: Engels, Leermiddelen (vorm)
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steed sounded ghastly and fearful in his own ears, when just as he
turned the corner of one of the streets that led from it, he saw a
woman steal forth with a child in her arms, while another, yet in
infancy, clung to her robe.
Short-sighted and injudicious, however, as the conduct of Eng-
land may be in this system of aspersion, recrimination on our part
would be equally ill-judged. I speak not of a prompt and spirited
vindication of our country, nor the keenest castigation of her slan-
derers—but I allude to a disposition to retaliate in kind ; to retort
sarcasm, and inspire prejudice; which seems to be spreading widely
among our writers. Let us guard particularly against such a
temper, for it would double the evil instead of redressing the wrong.
Nothing is so easy and inviting as the retort of abuse and sarcasm,
but it is a paltry and unprofitable contest. It is the alternative of
a morbid mind, fretted into petulance, rather than warmed into
indignation. If England is willing to permit the mean jealousies
of trade, or the rancorous animosities of politics, to deprave the inte-
grity of her press, and poison the fountain of public opinion, let us
beware of her example. She may deem it her interest to diffuse
error, and engender antipathy, for the purpose of checking emigra-
tion ; we have no purpose of the kind to serve. Neither have we
any spirit of national jealousy to gratify—for as yet, in all our
rivalship with England, we are the rising and the gaining party.
There can be no end to answer, therefore, but the gratification of
resentment—a mere spirit of retaliation; and even that is impotent.
Our retorts are never republished in England ; they fall short, there-
fore, of their aim; but they foster a querulous and peevish temper
among our writers; they sour the sweet flow of our early literature,
and sow thorns and brambles among its blossoms. What is still
worse, they circulate through our own country, and, as far as they
have effect, excite virulent national prejudices. This last is the evil
most especially to be deprecated. Governed, as we are, entirely by
public opinion, the utmost care should be taken to preserve the
purity of the public mind. Knowledge is power, and truth is know-