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MANNERS.
379
very striking. They were strictly and punc­tiliously polite to each other. They never met in the morning but there was a shaking of hands and cheerful salutations. They never parted at evening but with a kind "good night.'' There was evidently a mutual feeling of respect and good-will pervading them all, and their habitual observance of the rules of politeness prevented their harmony from being disturbed. Polite­ness, then, performed an oilice, and wrought beneiits in this family, which no other power or principle in society is accustomed to achieve.
Let me remark again, that I do not now use the word politeness in that narrow sense which restricts it to merely artificial and arbitrary rules of society. 1 speak of it as a principle, founded on just morality, and leading to delicate propriety of action towards others. I mean by it an habitual regard to the feelings of others, founded on a conviction that we have no more right to wound the heart than to stab the body, and that it is alike our duty and our interest to make our manners grateful to those around us. Let this be once inwrought upon childhood : let the child learn these precepts at the fireside; let them be enamelled upon the mind by a mother's emphatic teaching, by a father's omnipotent example. Let them be rendered dear by the
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