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Ainsworth
Ainsworth
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quaries in 1724, and honourable mention is made of him in the history of the society prefixed to the first volume of the 'Archæologia.' After retiring from his school he devoted a good deal of his time to ransacking the shops of obscure brokers in every quarter of London, by which means he often procured old coins and other valuable curiosities at a small cost. He disposed of his collection of antiquities and rarities in single articles a short time before his death. Hearne in his jottings (30 Aug. 1734) says: 'Mr. Aynsworth formerly kept a boarding school, and had a very flourishing school. His wife is dead, but he had no children. He is not in orders. He was born in Lancashire, in which county he is about making a settlement, being down there at present, for the poor for ever, having no relations but at a great distance. He hath been said to be a nonjuror. I think he is rather a Calvinist. . . . He hath a very great collection of coins. A maid servant robb'd him of many gold and silver ones. Dr. Middleton Massey is well acquainted with him. He is well spoken of in Westminster school.' Thomas Jackson, in his 'Life of Charles Wesley,' states that 'among those who visited Charles at this time (May 1738) was the learned Mr. Ainsworth, author of the Latin Dictionary which bears his name. He was now venerable through age, and attended the methodist meetings for prayer and spiritual converse, in the spirit of a little child.' Charles Wesley himself in his journal (12 May 1738), remarks: 'I was much moved at the sight of Mr. Ainsworth, a man of great learning, above seventy, who, like old Simeon, was waiting to see the Lord's salvation, that he might depart in peace. His tears, and vehemence, and childlike simplicity showed him upon the entrance of the kingdom of heaven.' Again Charles Wesley writes (24 May 1738): 'I was much pleased to-day at the sight of Mr. Ainsworth; a little child, full of grief, and fears, and love. At our repeating the line of the hymn—

Now descend and shake the earth,

he fell down as in an agony.'

Ainsworth died in London, 4 April 1743, in the eighty-third year of his age, and was buried at Poplar, where is the following monumental inscription for him and his wife, written by himself:—

Rob. Ainsworth et Uxor ejus, admodum senes,
Dormituri, vestem detritam hic exuerunt,
Novam, primo mane surgentes, induturi.
Dum fas, mortalis, sapias, et respice finem,
Hoc suadent manes, hoc canit Amramides.
To thy Reflection, mortal Friend,
Th' Advice of Moses I commend:
Be wise and meditate thy End.

His works are:—1. The tract already alluded to, entitled 'The most Natural and Easie Way of Institution: containing Proposals for making a Domestic Education less chargeable to Parents, and more Easie and Beneficial to Children. By which Method, Youth may not only make a very considerable Progress in Languages, but also in Arts and Sciences, in Two Years,' London, 1698, 4to. This sensible treatise shows that Ainsworth was in advance of his age, and that he had arrived at much more correct views of education than were then, and indeed are still, commonly entertained, more especially on the mode of teaching foreign languages. He perceived the absurdity of imparting, at the outset, the abstract rules of grammar, and proposed that languages should be taught after the mode by which every child learns its mother tongue. His ingenious and rational scheme for imparting a knowledge of Latin is thus described: 'I believe the Latin Tongue may be learn'd so far forth as to understand very well a Roman Author, to write Latin correctly, and speak it fluently, and a considerable Knowledge attained in Arts and Sciences, by little Children, by the Proposals following, in two years' time at most, and that with ease and pleasure, both to Master and Scholar. Proposition (1) That a convenient House be taken, a small distance from London, with a large Garden, and other Conveniencies. (2) That there be two Masters, whereof one to be capable of teaching Latin, Greek, and Hebrew: The other, at least, to understand Latin, and speak it fluently; to be well skill'd in Logic, Rhetoric, Geography, and History; and that he write a good Hand. (3) That Latin be made a Living Language in the Family; i.e. That no other Language be us'd in presence of the Boys. (4) That one or both the Masters continually be present with the Pupils, whether Reading, Writing, Translating, or Playing, from 7 in the Morning till 8 at Night. (5) That there be no Rods, or any kind of Punishment, but that a generous Emulation be carry'd on by Rewards; to which use the Parents shall allow       per Annum, of which they to have an Account Monthly in a Latin Epistle, by which they may be informed both of their Proficiency and Diligence from time to time. (6) That the number of Pupils exceed not Twelve. (7 ) That they read English well; and that their Master take care to Improve it. (8) That they be not younger than Six, nor older than Eleven Years of Age. (9) That their Authors, and Masters, be their Grammar, Dictionary, and Phrase-Book. (10) That nothing be imposed on them as a Task.' Ainsworth did not

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