In 1699 John Aubrey began to compile notes for a scheme for the education of young gentlemen. The manuscript he left has never been published. The editor of the volume organized and re-arranged the text and has provided an historical Introduction and detailed notes. Aubrey gives a graphic account of education at the time. He displays a remarkable breadth of knowledge of the broad issues of history, law, mechanics, science and pedagogy and he was intensely curious about the practicalities of teaching language and number, the effects of puberty, diet, travel, games and music.

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