|From Diane's Antique Book Collection|
“When a man hath taken a new wife he shall not go to war, neither shall he be charged with any business; but he shall be free at home one year and cheer up the wife which he has taken. Deut. 24:5
Advice of Jeremy Taylor
Jeremy Taylor says: “If you are for pleasure, marry; if you prize rosy health, marry. A good wife is heaven’s last best gift to man – his angel of mercy-minister of graces innumerable – his gem of many virtues – his casket of jewels – her voice, his sweetest music – her smiles, his brightest day – her kiss, the guardian of innocence – her arms, the pale of his safety, the balm of his health, the balsam of his life-her industry, his surest wealth-her economy, his safest steward-her lips, his faithful counselors-her bosom, the softest pillow of his cares-and her prayers, the ablest advocates of heaven.”
“Doubtless you have remarked, with satisfaction,” says a writer in one of our popular magazines, “the little oddities of men who marry rather late in life are pruned away speedily after marriage. You may find a man who used to be shabbily and carelessly dressed, with huge shirt collar frayed at the edges, and a glaring yellow silk pocket-handkerchief, broken of these and become a pattern of neatness. You have seen a man whose hair and whiskers were ridiculously cut, speedily become like other human beings. You have seen a clergyman who wore a long beard, in a little while appear without one. You have seen a man who used to sing ridiculous sentimental songs leave them off. You have seen a man who took snuff copiously, and who generally had his breast covered with snuff, abandon this vile habit. A wife is the grand wielder of the moral pruning knife.
Whenever you find a man whom you know little about, oddly dressed or talking ridiculously, or exhibiting any eccentricity of manner, you may be tolerably sure he is not a married man. For the little corners are rounded off, the shoots are pruned away in married men. Wives generally have much more sense than their husbands, especially if the husbands are clever men. The wife’s advises are like the ballast that keeps the ship steady. They are like the wholesome though painful shears snipping off the little growth of self-conceit and folly.
Wells, A. M., Richard A., MANNERS, CULTURE AND DRESS, Massachusetts, King, Richardson & Company Publishers, 1893