Hello, everybody. My friend shared an excerpt from a book by this guy. I really enjoyed the read and I wrote some of it down and gave it to la today. I hope you enjoy it too, and if you don’t have time to read it all, “…this is the sum of the matter:—if ye will be happy in marriage, Confide, love, and be patient: be faithful, firm, and holy.”
Seek a good wife of thy God, for she is the best gift of his providence;
Yet ask not in bold confidence that which he hath not promised.
Thou knowest not his good-will:—be thy prayer then submissive there-
And leave thy petition to his mercy, assured that he will deal well with
If thou art to have a wife of thy youth, she is now living on the earth;
Therefore think of her, and pray for her weal; yea, though thou hast not
They that love early become like-minded, and the tempter touches them not:
They grow up leaning on each other, as the olive and vine.
Youth longeth for a kindred spirit, and yearneth for a heart that can com-
mune with his own;
He meditateth night and day, doting on the image of his fancy.
Take heed that what charmeth thee is real, nor springeth of thine own
And suffer not trifles to win thy love; for a wife is thine unto death.
The harp and the voice may thrill thee,—sound may enchant thine ear,
But consider thou, the hand will wither, and the sweet notes turn to dis-
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.
O happy lot, and hallowed, even as the joy of angels,
Where the golden chain of godliness is entwined with the roses of love:
But beware, thou seem not to be holy, to win favour in the eyes of a crea-
For the guilt of the hypocrite is deadly, and winneth thee wrath else
The idol of thy heart is, as thoti, a probationary sojourner on earth;
Therefore be chary of her soul, for that is a jewel in her casket.
Let her be a child of God, that she bring with her a blessing to thy house,—
A blessing above riches, and leading contentment in its train:
Let her be an heir of heaven; so shall she help thee on thy way;
For those who are one in faith, fight double-handed against evil.
Take heed lest she love thee before God; that she be not an idolater:
Yet see thou that she love thee well: for her heart is the heart of woman:
And the triple nature of humanity must be bound by a triple chain,
For soul and mind and body—godliness, esteem, and affection.
How beautiful is modesty! it winneth upon all beholders:
But a word or a glance may destroy the pure love that should have been
Affect not to despise beauty; no one is freed from its dominion:
But regard it not a pearl of price :—it is fleeting as the bow in the clouds.
If the character within be gentle, it often hath its index in the countenance:
The soft smile of a loving face is better than splendour that fadeth quickly.
When thou choosest a wife, think not only of thyself,
But of those God may give thee of her, that they reproach thee not for
See that he hath given her health, lest thou lose her early and weep;
See that she springeth of a wholesome stock, that thy little ones perish
not before thee:
For many a fair skin hath covered a mining disease,
And many a laughing cheek been bright with the glare of madness.
Mark the converse of one thou lovest, that it be simple and sincere;
For an artful or false woman shall set thy pillow with thorns.
Observe her deportment with others, when she thinketh not that thou art
For with thee will the blushes of love conceal the true colour of her mind.
Hath she learning? it is good, so that modesty go with it:
Hath she wisdom? it is precious, but beware that thou exceed;
For woman must be subject, and the true mastery is of the mind.
Be joined to thine equal in rank, or the foot of pride will kick at thee:
And look not only for riches, lest thou be mated with misery:
Marry not without means; for so shouldst thou tempt Providence;
But wait not for more than enough; for marriage is the duty of most men;
Grievous indeed must be the burden that shall outweigh innocence and
And a well-assorted marriage hath not many cares.
In the day of thy joy consider the poor; thou shalt reap a rich harvest of
For these be the pensioners of One who filleth thy cup with pleasures;
In the day of thy joy be thankful; He hath well deserved thy praise;
Mean and selfish is the heart that seeketh him only in sorrow.
For her sake, who leaneth on thine arm, court not the notice of the world,
And remember that sober privacy is comelier than public display.
If thou marriest, thou art allied unto strangers: see they be not such as
If thou marriest, thou leavest thine own; see that it be not done in anger.
Bride and bridegroom, pilgrims of life, henceforward to travel together,
In this the beginning of your journey, neglect not the favour of Heaven:
And at eventide kneel ye together, that your joy be not unhallowed:
Angels that are round you shall be glad, those loving ministers of mercy,
And the richest blessings of your God shall be poured on his favoured
Marriage is a figure and an earnest of holier things unseen,
And reverence well becometh the symbol of dignity and glory.
Keep thy heart pure, lest thou do dishonour to thy state;
Selfishness is base and hateful ; but love considereth not itself.
The wicked turneth good into evil, for his mind is warped within him:
But the heart of the righteous is chaste; his conscience casteth off sin.
If thou wilt be loved, render implicit confidence;
If thou wouldst not suspect, receive full confidence in turn:
For where trust is not reciprocal, the love that trusted withereth.
Hide not your grief nor your gladness; be open one with the other;
Let bitterness be strange unto your tongues, but sympathy a dweller in
Imparting halveth the evils, while it doubleth the pleasures of life,
But sorrows breed and thicken in the gloomy bosom of Reserve.
Young wife, be not forward, nor forget that modesty becometh thee:
If it be discarded now, who will not hold it feigned before?
But be not as a timid girl,—there is honour due to thine estate;
A matron’s modesty is dignified: she blusheth not, neither is she bold.
Be kind to the friends of thine husband, for the love they have to him:
And gently bear with his infirmities; hast thou no need of his forbearance?
Be not always in each other’s company; it is often good to be alone;
And if there be too much sameness, ye cannot but grow weary of each
Ye have each a soul to be nourished, and a mind to be taught in wisdom,
Therefore, as accountable for time, help one another to improve it.
If ye feel love to decline, track out quickly the secret cause;
Let it not rankle for a day, but confess and bewail it together:
Speedily seek to be reconciled, for love is the life of marriage;
And be ye co-partners in triumph, conquering the peevishness of self.
Let no one have thy confidence, O wife, saving thy husband:
Have not a friend more intimate, O husband, than thy wife.
In the joy of a well-ordered home, be warned that this is not your rest;
For the substance to come may be forgotten in the present beauty of the
If ye are blessed with children, ye have a fearful pleasure,
A deeper care and a higher joy, and the range of your existence is
If God in wisdom refuse them, thank him for an unknown mercy:
For how can ye tell if they might be a blessing or a curse?
Yet ye may pray, like Hannah, simply dependent on his will:
Resignation sweeteneth the cup, but impatience dasheth it with vinegar.
Now this is the sum of the matter:—if ye will be happy in marriage,
Confide, love, and be patient: be faithful, firm, and holy.
~ Tupper’s Proverbial Philosophy