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The True Woman by Justin D. Fulton

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of liberty, and then they will be able not only to make their own
institutions, but keep and defend them also. So the emancipation of
woman can be effected only by breaking the bonds of her ignorance,
frivolity, and vice. A character must be given her, and then the iron
door of her prison-house will open to her of its own accord, and
she will find that the angel of liberty has been leading her forth
indeed." In this direction Jesus labored. Paul, in his Epistles, gave
emphasis to the teachings of the Old Testament, and so he wrote, "Let
your women keep silence, in the churches, for it is not permitted them
to speak; but they are to be in subjection, as the law also says; and
if they will to learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home;
for it is a shame for women to speak in the church,"--I Cor. xiv. 34,

Against this command many arguments have been brought to bear, and
despite this apostolic command, some women insist upon their right to
preach. It is a significant truth, that whoever does this, enters upon
a conflict with public sentiment born of God, and subjects herself to
terrible mortification. The refusal of lending Universalist divines to
share the exercises of an ordination with a woman, illustrates this
principle. The recognition given to man as the head of the household,
involves the loss of woman's individuality, and of her right to a
support. It opens a window to life, and shows why our higher nature
revolts against woman being compelled to labor in the field. That is
man's place, and the labor elevates him. It degrades a woman. The
praises of agricultural toil for man find a place in song and story;
but labor in the field is destructive of womanhood, of motherhood, and
of wifehood.

We have seen that the Scriptures declare, 1. That it is not well for
man to be alone. He is not complete until woman is joined to him in
marriage. 2. Woman was made for man. Manliness is an attribute that
belongs to man; it disgraces a woman. To be womanly, is the noblest
tribute that can be paid to woman; but it disgraces a man, because
God, the Creator, placed this characteristic within the heart and soul
and nature, just as he gave a difference of nature, mould, and form,
to the outward appearance of man and woman. He made them for a
particular purpose, and not for the same purpose. They were not made
in the same manner, nor of the same material. If woman be the weaker
vessel, she is of the finer mould. God made man in his own image, and
woman was created to be his helpmeet.

3. We have noticed the change in the relations which was the product
of the curse. Woman in Eden was the source of influence. After it, man
became the head, and her desire was unto him.

4. Since the fall, labor has been multiplied to man, sorrow to woman;
but such is the kindness of God, that these two facts are sources of
perpetual joy in the home. The wife is proud of her toiling husband,
the man is tender of his suffering wife; and in the bliss of childhood
happiness both find their reward.

These statements shrine all the facts of the separate histories of man
and woman. It were easier to change earth to water, and sea to land,
than it is to make a womanly woman consent to appear manly. Her God
made her a woman. It is not a fault. It is a glory. The bird that
skims the wave would not exchange places with the bird that goes to
meet the sun; but this is not to bring a charge against the eagle or
the swan.

One more truth, and then we will pass to the consideration of
the lessons discoverable in woman's nature. All the Scripture
requirements, such as refer to the plaiting of the hair, to being
uncovered in public, are said to refer to the customs of the East, and
not to bind woman in this age of progress. The principle covered by
those requirements then, rules now. Paul said, Let not a Christian
woman break through any of the restraints of womanhood, and so appear
as do the harlots, with uncovered faces and with plaited hair, who
mingle freely with men, and are shorn of that modesty and weakness so
becoming woman. Woman's right to be a woman implies the right to be
loved, to be respected as a woman, to be married, to bring forth to
the world the product of that love; and woman's highest interests are
promoted by defending and maintaining this right.

There are those who object to the word _service_, and claim that those
who take the Bible as authority wish to reduce woman to slavery. No
charge could be more absurd; and God's care for woman is manifest,
both in the teachings of the Bible and in the constitution of the
race. Woman owes to Christianity all she enjoys. Leave her to be
subject to the conditions imposed on her by unregenerated manhood or
womanhood, and you leave her to become either a thing in society, or
else reduce her to a level with the beasts of burden. In old savage
and pagan tribes the severest burdens of physical toil were laid upon
her. She was valued for the same reason that men prize their most
useful animals, or as a means of gratifying sensual and selfish
desires. Even in the learned and dignified forms of modern paganism,
the wife is the slave rather than the companion of her husband. She
is kept apart from him. The education of her mental faculties is
neglected. She is not allowed to walk with him; she must walk behind
him. She must not eat with him, but eat after he has done, and eat
what _he leaves_. She must not sleep until he is asleep, nor remain
asleep after he is awake. If she is sitting down, and he comes into
the room, she must rise up. She must bow to no other god on the earth
besides her husband. She must worship him while he lives, and when he
dies she must be burned with him. In case she is not burned, she is
not allowed to marry, and is considered an outcast. There is little
social intercourse between the sexes, little or no acquaintance of the
parties before marriage, and, consequently, little mutual attachment.
Women are not allowed to learn to read, because there can be no solid
foundation laid for future influence.

Under the Crescent the condition of woman is worse rather than better,
for in pagan India she is permitted to share in the hope of religion;
but in Mohammedan countries it is a popular tradition that women are
forbidden paradise; and it requires some effort for the imagination to
conceive how debased and wretched must be the condition of the
female sex to originate and sustain such a horrible and blasphemous

Even in the refined and shining ages of Greece and Rome, where the
cultivation of letters and the graces of polished style, the charms
of poetry and eloquence, the elegances of architecture, sculpture,
painting, and embroidery, the glory of conquest and the pride of
national distinction, were unsurpassed,--even then and there, woman
was but the abject slave of man, the object of his ambition, avarice,
lust, and power.

Truly has it been said that nothing more surely distinguishes the
savage state from the civilized, the East from the West, Paganism from
Christianity, antiquity from the middle ages, the middle ages from
modern times, than the condition of woman.

In China, she is used as a beast of burden. The Chinese peasant woman
goes to the field with her male infant on her back, and ploughs, sows,
and reaps, exposed to all the changes of the weather. In Calcutta,
women are the masons, and maybe seen daily conveying their hods of
cement, and spreading it on the tops of their houses.

In a country where no European man can labor, where the native rests
until compelled by his conqueror to work, seven thousand of these
women might have been seen, in 1859, climbing to the edge of ravines,
with baskets of stone on their heads, to fill, with these tedious
contributions, thousands of perpendicular feet, in order that a
railroad might wind among the mountains.

In Australia, she carries the burden which man's indolence refuses;
and in Great Britain, the condition of women among the lower classes,
revealed by the statistics of her mines and of her manufacturing
districts, is such as to make a moralist blush. Behold her, with a
strap around her waist, dragging the coal-cart in the mine, and so
ignorant, that when asked if she knew Jesus, replied, "He never worked
in our shaft."

Do we turn to America, we find that in the providence of God her
fortune has been advanced and improved by the extension of the era of
free government, and by the diffusion of the principles of the gospel
of Christ.

True, in the past, throughout the South, a negro woman worked in the
field as a beast of burden; but emancipation and the diffusion of the
principles of Christianity changes all this in the South, as it has
changed it in Turkey and in the East. The colored man builds for his
wife a house, and toils for her in the field or shop, while she keeps
the house, and beautifies the sanctuary of the heart.

Now, in all this land, woman's right to be a woman is recognized, and
"woman's right to be a man" is opposed, though eloquent orators of
either sex may declaim in its behalf. God's law, natural and revealed,
is against it. Woman's nature will be woman's nature no longer when
she shall desire it.

An illustration of this fact was recently furnished. A female orator
had just left the platform for the horse-car. She was tired, and,
doubtless, needed a seat. She had been speaking in favor of woman's
rights, and had berated the opposite sex for their unwillingness to
grant them. Worn out with fatigue, and excited, her lace red, her eyes
flashing, she looked around for a seat. The car was full, and among
the number sitting down was a workingman.

She spoke so that all could hear her, saying, "You are not gentlemen,
or you would not let a woman stand." The workingman looked up, and
replied, "Did I not just hear you speak in behalf of woman's
rights?" The woman, supposing she had found a friend, replied in
the affirmative. "Well," said he, "I will stand up any time, with
pleasure, for a housewife or a kitchen girl; but you contend for an
equality of rights with men; take it, and stand up among them." The
shout of approbation proved that the argument was not on the side of
woman. She did not herself believe in the theory advanced. Down in her
heart she felt that, because she was a woman, she was entitled to be
treated with love and respect, with honor and consideration.

The right which exempts her from certain things which men must endure,
_grows out of her right to be a woman_. We feel that it is her
privilege and her right to be relieved from the necessity of working
in the field, from doing many things which it is manly in man to do.

We do not object to woman's sharing in the toil of the store, the
shop, or the factory. Better this than idleness and want; yet there is
a reason for pondering the question whether woman is wise in trying to
displace man for her own advantage. If any one must be idle, let it be
woman, and not man. It has been well said, "There are in Massachusetts
over seventy thousand more females than males, and probably twice
that number in the State of New York. It is an unnatural condition of
things. At the West the number of men greatly preponderates."

"Our young men go off early in life, leaving fathers, mothers, and
sisters behind them. The prospect for their sisters to marry, then, is
lessened by every emigration." Now, what shall be done in behalf of
these thousands of virtuous, educated, and noble girls? The cry is,
make them into clerks, and bookkeepers, and bankers, and give them all
the employments of men. Think it over. Suppose now we make these
girls into clerks in stores and counting-rooms, say ten thousand in
Massachusetts, and twenty thousand in New York--don't we displace
so many young men; drive them off to the West; prevent so many new
families from being established here; take away thirty thousand
chances of marriage from these females, and enhance the evil we are
trying to remedy?

Is it a blessing to woman to lessen her opportunities of marriage?

Again, a woman can be idle, and not be lost. Whereas man, if left
unemployed, runs to mischief, if not to crime.

The history of those manufacturing districts in England, so eloquently
described by Charlotte Elizabeth, where woman is preferred because of
the cheapness and skill of her labor, proves this position correct.
The husband lives in idleness, and has the care of the house. The
result is, that comfort and neatness are at an end. The children are
reared in crime, in indolence; the men pass their time in drinking and
in gambling, prostitution abounds, and the health of the community,
socially, physically, mentally, and morally, is destroyed.

On the other hand, enter one of those manufacturing towns where the
skilled labor of man is rewarded, and where women keep the house with
thrift and care, and you behold order, virtue, and prosperity. This is
not poetry. It is fact. It proves that God's laws must be heeded and
obeyed. "Marriage," said Gail Hamilton, "is a friendship of the sexes
so profound, so comprehensive, that it includes the whole being. The
inflow of the divine life,

"'Bright effluence of bright essence increate,'

"blends the man nature and the woman nature into an absolute oneness,
which shapes itself ever thereafter into the only perfect symmetry.
Thus alone comes humanity in the unity of the faith, and of the
knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of
the stature of the fulness of Christ. Thus marriage forever tends to
its own annihilation,--not the annihilation of a stream swallowed up
in desert sands, but of a river broadening to the boundless sea. The
more perfect its substance, the more yielding its form. As it gathers
power it diminishes pomp, till, by a pathway which the vulture's eye
hath not seen and never can see, marriage itself leads to the land
where they neither marry nor are given in marriage.

"Wherever man pays reverence to woman,--wherever any man feels the
influence of any woman, purifying, chastening, abashing, strengthening
him against temptation, shielding him from evil, ministering to his
self-respect, medicining his weariness, peopling his solitude, winning
him from sordid prizes, enlivening his monotonous days with mirth, or
fancy, or wit, flashing heaven upon his earth, and mellowing it for
all spiritual fertility,--there is the element of marriage. Wherever
woman pays reverence to man,--wherever any woman rejoices in the
strength of any man, feels it to be God's agent, upholding her
weakness, confirming her purpose, and crowning her power,--wherever
he reveals himself to her, just, upright, inflexible, yet tolerant,
merciful, benignant, not unruffled, perhaps, but not overcome by the
world's turbulence, and responding to all her gentleness, his feet
on the earth, his head among the stars, helping her to hold her
soul steadfast in right, to stand firm against the encroachments of
frivolity, vanity, impatience, fatigue, and discouragement, helping to
preserve her good nature, to develop her energy, to consolidate
her thought, to utilize her benevolence, to exalt and illumine her
life,--there is the essence of marriage. Its love is founded on
respect, and increases self-respect at the very moment of merging
itself in another. Its love is mutual, equally giving and receiving
at every instant of its action. There is neither dependence nor
independence, but inter-dependence. Years cannot weaken its bonds,
distance cannot sunder them. It is a love which vanquishes the grave,
and transfigures death itself into life."

These laws are varied by God's word, and written indelibly upon the
nature of man. Surely nothing can be more manifest than that they must
be obeyed.


_Nature teaches us the Wisdom of adhering to the Divine Plan_.

Anatomists tell us that in the embryo skeleton there is a marked
difference of general conformation in the two sexes; that in the male
there is a larger chest and breathing apparatus, which, affects the
whole organization, forming a more powerful muscular system, and
producing a physical constitution which predestines him to bold
enterprises and daring exploits. The woman, being differently
constructed, finds it natural to content herself in the house, removed
from the gaze of the world, and from rude contact with its jostling

There is an outside and an inside world. The work of the street, or
the shop, or the field, is no more essential to the well-being of the
family than is the work performed in the house. God assigned to man
the field, or out-door work, and to woman the home and housework. In
proportion as men and women fill well their separate spheres, there is
harmony and happiness. Man toils, and provides for the wants of his
household. Woman toils, and sees to it that the children are well
reared, and that the house is well kept. Woman is respected and
supported, not in idleness, but in caring for the wants of those
committed to her care. The attempt is being made to disregard these
natural laws, by those who claim to have outgrown divine legislation,
and who have the hardihood to trample upon the laws of nature. But in
vain. When God made our first parents, he made them male and female,
and it will not be difficult to believe in the impossibility of the
finite being able to undo the work of the Infinite. Each has his and
her place, and nothing goes continuously right if husband and wife
change places. Keep the positions assigned them by the laws of God and
nature, and all will go well.

Give to woman the serious consideration due from every man born of
woman's agony, and you build her up in love, endow her with respect,
encourage her to cultivate her mind, and to develop the graces of her
nature. The mightiest influence which exists upon earth is concealed
in the heart of woman. It follows that her elevation and her
happiness, her education and usefulness, are objects of deep concern.
We have seen that the legislation of Heaven provides for the
gratification of the early longing of the soul for companionship in
making marriage honorable and love the holiest of instincts.

It is fashionable to talk against an early love. It is wrong thus to
do. "Youth longeth for a kindred spirit, and yearneth for a heart that
can commune with his own. He meditateth night and day, doting on the
image of his fancy." It is the tendency of an early love to inspire
youth with grand aspirations and lofty aims. "They that love early,
shall become like-minded, and the tempter shall touch them not. They
shall grow up, leaning on each other, as the olive and the vine."

It is only when love is scorned, when passion takes its place, when
man forgets that the idol of his heart is a probationer of earth like
himself, that it is his duty to be chary of her soul, feeling that it
is his jewel. It is only when a man ceases to be a man, and becomes a
beast, that he can consent, even in thought, to despoil woman of her
virtue; to trample upon the sacred instincts of her nobler nature.
A real woman will delight to make herself worthy of love. In the
advancement of her mind, quite as much as in the adornment of her
person, she strives to make herself beautiful as well as lovable. If
she forgets her duty, and consents to seem to be what she is not, so
that her admirer finds that the appearance which charmed him was not
real, then the future of that woman is dark indeed. Her husband will
discover, when too late, that "the harp and the voice may thrill him,
sound may enchant his ear, but, by and by, the hand will wither, and
the sweet notes turn to discord; the eye, so brilliant at even, may be
red with sorrow in the morning; and the sylph-like form of elegance
must writhe in the crampings of pain."

Naturally the man and woman will recognize the rule of God in the
choice of their vocation. He will go abroad, and she will stay at
home. He will earn the bread, and she will make it. He will build the
house, and she will keep it. The difference between their spheres of
labor seems naturally to be this: one is external, the other internal;
one active, the other passive. He has to go and seek out his path;
hers usually lies close under her feet. Yet, if life is meant to be a
worthy one, each must resolutely be trod.

"When the man wants weight, the woman takes it up,
And topples down the scales; but this is fixt
As are the roots of earth and base of all:
Man for the field, and woman for the hearth;
Man for the sword, and for the needle she;
Man with the head, and woman with the heart;
Man to command, and woman to obey;
All else confusion."

Woman is not content to remain separate and apart. She will give her
love to some object, and desires to repose her faith in some person
worthy of her regard. She lives for man. She dresses and studies for
him. She acquires knowledge and accomplishments, which are known to
please and to allure.

Woman, being by nature dependent, finds it easier to lay hold of the
offer of salvation than does man. His independent spirit keeps him
back. Woman has only to recognize her dependence upon One higher than
man, and in doing this is obliged to do but little violence to
her habits of thought and feeling, and no violence at all to such
sentiments of independence as stand most in the way of man. Hence men
shrink with horror from coming in contact with a godless woman. In
their eyes she is monstrous, unreasonable and offensive. Even an
utterly godless man, unless he be debauched and debased to the
position of an animal, deems such a woman without an excuse. He looks
on her with suspicion. He would not intrust his children to her care.
Oh happy lot, and hallowed even as the joy of angels, where the golden
chain of godliness is entwined with the roses of love, as one of our
own poets wrote:--

"O, what is woman--what her smile,
Her lip of love, her eye of light;
What is she if her lip revile
The lowly Jesus? Love may write
His name upon her noble brow,
Or linger in her curls of jet;
The bright spring flowers may scarcely bow
Beneath her step, and yet, and yet
Without that meeker grace, she'll be
A lighter thing than vanity."

Thus wrote N.P. Willis. He felt that a woman, with Christ in her
heart, was the _beau ideal_ of man. The home is her kingdom, and
the heart of husband or brother is her throne. In that sphere her
influence is the most potent instrumentality on earth.

Demosthenes declared that by this influence she can in an hour upset
the legislation of a year of statesmanship. Her power is, however,
through man, not apart from him.

This is the scriptural view. Nowhere do we read of woman as though
she had a mission apart from man. We talk of men and forget women. It
seems almost impossible to legislate for woman and forget man.

Mankind includes womankind, but womankind does not include mankind.

It may not be complimentary, yet it remains true, that the Scriptures
fail to furnish us with a model woman.

Jesus was the model man; but Eve, and Mary, and Rebekah, and Rachel,
were model women to none besides those to whom they were given as
wives. This, perhaps, is well, for it would be injudicious to try and
prove to any man that his wife should differ radically from herself.


_Having considered the teachings of the Scripture and of Nature, let
us listen to the Voice of Common Sense_.

Under this head we hesitate not to declare that the hope of woman lies
in the recognition of the laws of God, and the laws of her own higher

Look at the facts. Who demand the ballot for woman? They are not the
lovers of God, nor are they the believers in Christ, as a class. There
may be exceptions, but the majority prefer an infidel's cheer to the
favor of God and the love of the Christian community. It is because of
this tendency that the majority of those who contend for the ballot
for woman cut loose from the legislation of Heaven, from the
enjoyments of home, and drift to infidelity and ruin.

Our wives and mothers do not ask the ballot. Our young ladies do not
care even to hear the question discussed. They believe that whatever
hinders woman from being the helpmeet of man does her injury. It is
claimed that woman needs the ballot to secure equal laws. This claim
is urged, because, it is said, women are required to obey laws which
they had no share in making. It is a mistaken notion. Woman has had
a share in the legislation of the country. Her influence pervades
society. Let her be true to temperance, and intemperance is
restrained. Let her be true to freedom, and the pulsations of her
heart find their way through the entire framework of society. Let her
be true to her own glorious nature, and this attempt to unsex and
discrown her will meet with the swift and terrible condemnation it

Another has said, "The Amazons have often been met with the statement,
that a large majority of the women do not wish to vote, and would
not if they could. The truth of this statement is not denied. The
advocates of the ballot confess that many noble women affect a womanly
horror of being thought strong-minded," and to offset this tendency
they declare it to be the "imperative duty of women to claim the
suffrage." "Does this mean that women are to be coerced in this
matter? that our mothers, wives, and sisters are to be punished for
staying away from the polls? We have never supposed it the imperative
duty of every man to vote. And we know that many of the most
intelligent and upright do not vote. Such is the inexpressible
nastiness of our elections, especially in the larger cities, that men
of the cleanest morals think it right to keep away from them. The
foulest portions of the men go first, stay longest, and stand thickest
at the places of voting. How then will it be when the foulest portion
of the women get packed into the same crowd, and drive modesty away by
the foulness of their speech and presence? When the aggregate filth of
both sexes shall have met together at the polling stations, as it will
be sure to do, we hardly think any chaste or modest home-loving woman
will go near this stench unless compelled to do so."

It is because this scheme lifts the gate to the increasing wave
of corruption and pollution, that we are surprised that so-called
statesmen give their countenance to it. Give to woman the ballot, and
this country is hopelessly given up to Romanism. The priest loses the
man, but he keeps the woman. Give to the priests the control of the
votes of the thousands of servants in the great cities, and there is
an end to legislation in behalf of the Sabbath, the Bible, and the
school system, temperance, or morality.

The right to vote implies the right to rule, to legislate, to go to
Congress, and to take the Presidential chair. On this point hear Miss
Muloch. "Who that ever listened for two hours to the verbose confused
inanities of a ladies' committee, would immediately go and give his
vote for a Female House of Congress, or of Commons? or who, on
the receipt of a lady's letter of business,--I speak of the
average,--would henceforth desire to have our courts of justice
stocked with matronly lawyers, or thronged by

"'Sweet girl graduates, with their golden hair?'"

Well has Gail Hamilton said, "How will the possession of the ballot
affect in any way the vexed question of work and wages? One orator
says, 'Shall Senators tell me in their places that I have no need of
the ballot, when forty thousand women in the city of New York alone
are earning their daily bread at starving prices with the needle?' But
what will the ballot do for those forty thousand women when they get
it? It will not give them husbands, nor make their thriftless husbands
provident, nor their invalid husbands healthy. They cannot vote
themselves out of their dark, unwholesome sewing-rooms into
counting-rooms and insurance offices, nor have they generally the
qualifications which these places require. _The ballot will not enable
them to do anything for which their constitution or their education
has not fitted them, and I do not know of any law now which prevents
them from doing anything for which they are fitted, except the holding
of government offices._ ... What can the ballot do towards equalizing
wages, where work is already equalized without affecting wages, as is
not unfrequently the case? There are shops of the same sort, on the
same street, with male clerks in one and female clerks in another,
where the former work fewer hours and receive higher wages than the
latter.... Moreover, the question of female clerkship is not
yet settled. There are conscientious, intelligent, and obliging
shopkeepers, who say that female clerks are not satisfactory. Their
strength is not equal to the draughts made upon it. They are not able
to stand so long as clerks are required to stand. They have not the
patience, the civility, the tact that male clerks have.... All the
voting in the world can never add a cubit to a woman's stature."

Woman is not naturally a law-maker. Even in our homes she desires
the head of the house to lay down the law. Never shall I forget the
influence exerted by the utterance in a convention of Sabbath school
teachers. A paper was read, complaining that in a certain Sabbath
school there was a lady superintendent, because no man could be found
to take the place. In conclusion, the writer said, "We need a man in
our town. We have things that wear pantaloons, but we need a man, to
give direction to the school, and to attract the nobler and better
portion of community." It was an honest declaration, and voiced a
truth. Every town, every Sabbath school, every home, needs a man.
Women of talent have tried to figure in politics and in the pulpit,
but a sorry figure they have made of it.

Think of Miss Anthony and Mrs. Stanton in the train of George Francis
Train, perambulating the country in favor of the ballot in Kansas.
These are the leaders; but let it not be forgotten that they
sided against the ballot for the negro in hopes of getting it for
themselves, and proved their utter worthlessness and untrustworthiness
by trailing the banner committed to their keeping in the slime of a
convention which went for the repudiation of the national debt, the
defeat of the party of progress, and for the overthrow of republican
liberty. Had woman possessed the ballot, and had the course pursued by
the leaders of this movement exercised an influence over the majority,
this wonderful victory over the rebellious spirits of the land had
not been achieved; but, in its stead, the stars and bars would have
resumed their sway, and the stars and stripes, which now kiss the
breeze, and greet the rising hopes of uncounted millions, would have
been furled in gloom and night.

It is claimed that the ballot will secure for woman social respect.
The claim is not well founded. Those who seek it lose social respect,
because they step out of the path marked out for them by Providence
and by Nature. Woman, in her sphere, is man's good angel and helpmeet;
out of it, she is man's bitterest foe and heaviest curse.

There is an instinctive respect for woman in her proper sphere, which
is of itself a power superior to any merely conventional position that
a woman can build up for herself by her own hands, even through the
aid of the ballot.

How natural to see woman waited on by man! Sir Walter Raleigh was
praised because he cast his cloak into the mud to save the foot of his
Queen from being soiled. As noble acts have been performed by many
men, times without number. The uprising of gentlemen in the cars when
a tired woman enters with a child; the disposition to lighten her
cares and sweeten her joys, is everywhere considered manly.

Education is essential for her. She is the educator of the home, for
she is its soul. If one must be ignorant, let it be the man, and not
the woman. Many of our most intelligent men have had cultured mothers.
Very few sons ever grew to be learned whose mothers cared not for
books. This fact is appreciated, and leads us naturally to conclude
that if woman lacks social respect it is her own fault. If a woman
prefers superficiality to thoroughness; music, drawing, and dress, to
a knowledge of housework, an acquaintance with literature, and the
endowments of common sense, simply because brainless men are disposed
to seek out the effeminate and the frail in preference to the rugged
and the well-endowed, then she must suffer the consequences. If a
young lady, compelled to toil for support, will prefer the factory or
the store, with its hot air and depressing associations, to work in
the home, because she hopes in the store or factory to secure the
hand and heart of a husband sooner than elsewhere, she must suffer
accordingly. But if woman will unite in securing a reform in this
direction,--if the pure and the virtuous will say, Such a life as is
offered me in the family is in harmony with my future well-being, and
I will scorn the allurements elsewhere held out, and fit myself, by
study, for companionship with the noble of the land, she will succeed.
If woman will respect herself, she will be respected.

It is not by clamoring for rights that have been conferred upon
others; it is not by restless discontent, by partisan appeals, by
stepping out of her God-given sphere, and by attempting to destroy the
network of holy influences by which he ever has surrounded her; it is
not by ridiculing marriage and casting scorn on motherhood, that she
is to obtain the blessings she courts, but by tranquilly laboring
under this heaven-imposed law of obedience. Woman's weakness is
transmuted into strength when she opens her nature to the influences
of love, and when she consecrates herself to the happiness of others.
Then it is she obtains a moral and spiritual power to which man
is glad to do homage. Ambition, pride, wilfulness, or any earthly
passion, will distort her being. She struggles all in vain against
a divine appointment. It is from the soul of meekness that the true
strength of womanhood is derived; and it is because it has its root in
such a soil that it has a growth so majestic, showering its blessing
and fruits upon the world.

It was the sun and the wind that in the fable strove for the mastery;
and the strife was for the traveller's cloak. The quiet moon had
nought to do with such fierce rivalry of the burning or the blast;
but as in her tranquil orbit she journeys round the world, she gently
sways the tides of the ocean. Woman's influence resembles that exerted
by the queen of night. In the conflicts of life she has little to do;
but her influence is felt from the cradle to the grave, and the sphere
of it is the whole region of humanity. Woman's worst enemy is he who
would cruelly lift her out of her sphere, and would try to reverse the
laws of God and of nature in her behalf. They deceive woman who cause
her to believe that she will find independence when she abandons the
position assigned her by her Creator, and reaches one against which
her nature, the interests of society, and the laws of God contend.
Woman has her sphere and her work, and she is only happy when she
finds pleasure in lovingly, patiently, and faithfully performing the
duties and enacting the relations that belong to her as woman. She is
not the natural head of society. Man, rough, stern, cold, and almost
nerveless, is made to be the head of human society; and woman, quick,
sensitive, pliant (as her name indicates), gentle, loving, is the
heart of the world. As the heart, she has power. She rules through
love, and finds the work set for her to do in the doors opening before
her loving nature. She rules through love, and becomes a blessing
greater than we can ever acknowledge, because it is greater than we
can measure. Let woman take heart. She is not in captivity. The law of
service is on her, as it is on man. Much of her service consists in
suffering; much of man's consists in toil. Before both there are
fields of endeavor, white with beckoning harvests. In literature, in
reforms, in ministering to the wants and woes of humanity, in making
home more and more like heaven, woman has an open door set before her,
which no man will desire to close. Let her enter it and work. There
is a law of companionship far deeper than that of uniformity and
equality, or similarity--the law which reconciles similitude and
dissimilitude, the harmony of contrast, in which what is wanting on
the one side finds its complement on the other; for,--

"Heart with heart and mind with mind,
When the main fibres are entwined,
Through Nature's skill,
May even by contraries be joined
More closely still."

Such was the exquisite companionship of the sexes as they were
represented by our first parents, and such, however they may be
momentarily disturbed, they will remain, as the ideal for all the
generations of men and women. Let woman repose her trust in man, and
then, lifting up her heart, she may sing,--

"Though God's high things are not all ours,
'Tis ours to look above;
All is not ours to have and hold,
But all is ours to love."

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