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wanted money, bread and fuel to protect himself against hunger and cold. His faithful wife, who had pledged nearly the whole of her property for him, fell into a severe and tedious illness" (Raumer). Added to this was the open contempt of his neighbours, whose previous feelings of unbounded confidence, he tells us, "changed into a totally blind abandonment of even the last shadow of respect for my endeavours, and of belief in my fitness for the accomplishment of any part of them. . . . My friends now only loved me without hope; in the whole circuit of the surrounding district it was everywhere said that I was a lost man, that nothing more could be done for me."
PESTALOZZI AS A LITERARY MAN-" THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS."
OF the next eighteen years of his life, immediately following the closing of the Neuhof Poor School, one of his biographers (Dr. Biber) writes: "After the breaking up of that institution we find Pestalozzi in a condition truly deplorable. Dunned by his creditors, reviled by his enemies, insulted by men in power, sneered at by the vulgar, treated with ingratitude by most of those whom he had served, and separated from the few that might have been grateful, destitute of all assistance, but overwhelmed with mortifying advice, cast down by a succession of misfortunes, and tormented by a consciousness of having contributed to them by his own failings, he consumed his days in painful desolation on the same spot which he had made the dwelling-place of love and mercy, but which had now become to him an abode of anxiety and sorrow. He had deprived his wife, with her only son, of those enjoyments and advantages to which her education and circumstances had given her a claim; and he had not even to offer her, in compensation, the tranquil comforts of retirement.
"He was riveted with his family to a ruined and disordered economy, which, at every step, brought
painful recollections and anxious prospects before his mind. Of the cause which lay nearest his heart he durst not speak, even in a whisper; a sarcastic hint as to the success of his undertaking would have been the answer. He was obliged to conceal from mankind the love he bore them, and to take it for tender compassion on their part if they considered him no worse than a lunatic."
Another writer has well said: "Eighteen years!what a time for a soul like his to wait! History lightly passes over such a period. Ten, twenty, thirty years it makes but a cipher difference if nothing great happens in them. But with what agony must he have seen day after day, year after year gliding by, who in his fervent soul longed to labour for the good of mankind and yet looked in vain for the opportunity!" (Palmer).
Not in vain, however, was this time of tribulation. Like John the Baptist of old he was preparing his message for the world. In deep communings with his own heart and mind, such as all great souls seem to undergo, he still worked out his plan of salvation for the common people. His noble ideals were but chastened and clarified by the waters of affliction. Experience taught him but did not pervert him. He believed more firmly than ever in his ideals because he saw more clearly and fully their need and truth. He says: "Even while I was the sport of men who condemned me I never lost sight for a moment of the object I had in view, which was the removal of the causes of the misery that I saw on all sides of me. My strength too kept on increasing, and my own misfortunes taught me valuable truths. I knew the people as
on one else did. What deceived no one else always deceived me, but what deceived everybody else deceived me no longer. My own sufferings have enabled me to understand the sufferings of the people and their causes as no man without suffering can understand them. I suffered what the people suffered and saw them as no one else saw them; and strange as it may seem, I was never more profoundly convinced of the fundamental truths on which I had based my undertaking than when I saw that I had failed."
Not all his friends failed him in his sorest need. His old college friend Iselin, who was now editor of Ephemerides, invited him, in 1780, to contribute to it, and Pestalozzi did so in the form of a series of aphorisms on life and education, under the title of The evening hour of a hermit. The style and purpose of his work may be judged from the following quotations:
"Pastors and teachers of the nations, know you man; is it with you a matter of conscience to understand his nature and his destiny?
"All mankind are in their nature alike, they have but one path of contentment. The natural faculties of each one are to be perfected into pure human wisdom. This general education of man must serve as the foundation to every education of a particular rank.
"The faculties grow by exercise.
"The intellectual powers of children must not be urged on to remote distances before they have acquired strength by exercise in things near them.
"The circle of knowledge commences close round a man and from thence stretches out concentrically.
"Real knowledge must take precedence of word-teaching and mere talk."
Twenty-one years later he was able to say of these. reflections: "Iselin's Ephemerides bear witness that the dream of my wishes is not more comprehensive now than it was when at that time I sought to realise it".
As has so often been the case with the world's greatest men, the want of bread-and-butter has called forth their very souls into articulate form. Soon the crown and glory of all Pestalozzi's writings was to be produced-Leonard and Gertrude, a Book for the People. It happened that in 1781 the town's watchmen were to be put into uniform, and this caused a good deal of discussion. One important outcome of this can best be given in Pestalozzi's own words: "In a playful moment I put together a short composition turning this innovation into ridicule, which happened to be lying on Füssli's [a friendly bookseller] table when he was talking with his brother the painter (who, as far as I know, is now living in London where he is held in great esteem) about my sad fate, and lamenting that he knew of no means of helping me out of my present situation, considering the sort of man I was, and the manner in which I acted. Just at this instant the painter took up the squib upon the transformation of the crooked, dusty and uncombed town-watchmen under our gates, into straight, combed and trim ones, read it through several times, and then said to his brother: This man can help himself to any extent he pleases; he has talent for writing in a style which at the time in which we live will most certainly excite interest; encourage him to do so, and tell him from me, that he can most certainly help himself as an author, My friend sent for me on the spot and was overjoyed while he told me this, and added,
if he only will'.