Theodore Parker: A Biography

By Octavius Frothingham Brooks | Go to book overview

CHAPTER III.
TEACHING AND STUDY.

ON the 23d of March, 1831, Theodore Parker went to Boston, as an assistant teacher in a private school, at a salary of twelve dollars a month and board: it was afterwards raised to fifteen dollars, and the increase dated back to the beginning of his service. His worldly goods were contained in a great wooden trunk covered with painted cloth. Eleven octavo volumes and a few twelvemos constituted his library. He was set to teach more than he knew; but, as he never undertook to teach what he had not learned, he made up by toil what he lacked in resources. The toil was fearful. Mathematics, natural philosophy, Latin, French, Spanish, must be kept fresh, or learned newly, and -- except with incidental aid from a professed teacher in mathematics, Mr. Francis Grund -- by his own solitary efforts. Yet, even at this rate of enforced speed, he distanced duty, adding another language (German) to his store of tongues, and perfecting his acquaintance with those he had. This winter he wrote his first lecture, on Poland, and read it in Lexington. The subject was one of great popular interest at the time, as much as that of Greece or Hungary afterwards. He studied ten or twelve hours a day, -- the school required six; from May to September, seven. It was too much: he lost twenty-eight pounds of flesh in three months. He had never learned the art of husbanding his health:

-28-

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Theodore Parker: A Biography
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page i
  • Preface iii
  • Contents vii
  • Chapter I - Birthplace and Parentage 1
  • Chapter II - Home and Boyhood 10
  • Chapter III - Teaching and Study 28
  • Chapter IV - Divinity Hall 41
  • Chapter V - The Candidate 67
  • Chapter VI - West Roxbury 88
  • Chapter VII - The Ferment of Thought 125
  • Chapter VIII - The Unitarian Controversy 147
  • Chapter IX - Europe 183
  • Chapter X - The Conflict Renewed 210
  • Chapter XI - The Pastor 241
  • Chapter XII - The Pastor. Specimens of Correspondence 252
  • Chapter XIII - The Preacher 332
  • Chapter XIV - The Reformer 352
  • Chapter XV - The Fight with Slavery 376
  • Chapter XVI - The Kansas War 435
  • Chapter XVII - Failing Health 477
  • Chapter XVIII - The Departure. the Search 508
  • Chapter XIX - The Eternal City 521
  • Chapter XX - Tributes 537
  • Index 583
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