Catherine Beecher, Lover of Christ, Defender of Home Making and Encourager of Womanhood
Treatise on Domestic Economy
But as society gradually shakes off the remnants of barbarism, and the intellectual and moral interests of man rise in estimation above merely sensual, a truer estimate is formed of women’s duties, and of the measure of intellect requisite for proper discharge of them. Let any man of sense and discernment become the member of a large household, in which a well-educated and pious women is endeavoring systematically to discharge her multiform duties; let him fully comprehend all her cares, difficulties, and perplexities; and it is probable he would coincide in the opinion, that no statesmen, at the head of a nation’s affairs, had more frequent calls for wisdom, firmness, tact, discrimination, prudence, and versatility of talent, than such a women.
She has a husband, whose peculiar tastes and habits she must accommodate; she has children, whose health she must guard, whose physical constitution she must study and develop, whose temper and habits must she must regulate, whose principles she must form, whose pursuits she must direct. She has constantly changing domestics, with all varieties of temper and habits, whom she must govern, instruct, and direct; she is required to regulate the finances of the domestic state, and constantly to adapt expenditures to the means and to the relative claims of each department. She has direction of the kitchen, where ignorance, forgetfulness, and awkwardness are to be so regulated, that the various operations shall each start at the right time, and shall be in completeness at the same given hour. She has the claims of society to meet, calls to receive and return, and the duties of hospitality to sustain. She has poor to relieve; benevolent societies to aid; the schools of her children to inquire and decide about; the care of the sick; the nursing of infancy; and the endless miscellany of odd items constantly recurring in a large family.
to be cont.
Domestic Economy pt 1, Domestic Economy pt 2, Domestic Economy pt 3, Domestic Economy pt 4, Domestic Economy pt 5, Domestic Economy pt 6, Domestic Economy pt 7, Domestic Economy pt 8, Domestic Economy pt 9, Domestic Economy pt 10