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The Accidents of Youth (1819)

- April 15, 2013 in accidents, collections, danger, engravings, texts, Texts: 19th, Texts: Childrens, Texts: Fiction, Texts: Picturebooks, youth

The Accidents of Youth, consisting of short histories, calculated to improve the moral conduct of children, and warn them of the many dangers to which they are exposed : illustrated by engravings; 1819; Jas. W. and Chas. Adlard, London. Through a series of short stories and wonderful engravings, this book is aimed at keeping young people out of trouble and “calculated to improve [their] moral conduct”. As the author declares in his/her brilliantly earnest preface addressed to the child reader of the book: My Dear Children, The inexperience and thoughtlessness natural at your age exposes you to many dangers : I have therefore pointed out some of them in this book, which contains several instructive little histories, in which you will behold the misfortunes that arise from disobedience and want of thought. When your parents desire you not to climb upon the chairs, or touch the fire, or play with knives, or pins, it is not because they wish to prevent you amusing yourselves ; they are only anxious to keep you from harm. If you were allowed to do whatever you pleased, many accidents would happen through your own indiscretion : for instance, when climbing on the furniture you [...]