Princeton
Weekly Bulletin
May 22, 2000
Vol. 89, No. 28
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Page one news and features
Art from gender viewpoint
Hydrogen: was lost, is found
Proposal may improve hazardous waste cleanup
Shapiro honored for leadership on ethical issues

Inside
Faculty to advise on Wythes recommendations
Professors instruct Teachers as Scholars
Students are advised to "Flee youthful lusts"
100 Treasures from the Collections of the PU Library
Alumni Learning

People
Physics major wins Churchill Scholarship
Faculty become emeriti
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Students are advised to "Flee youthful lusts"

   

The library has purchased a pamphlet entitled "Questions and Counsel for the Students of Nassau-Hall (At Princeton in New-Jersey) Who Hope that a Work of Saving Grace Has Been Wrought Upon Their Hearts."

Published in 1815, this 11-page document, does not appear in any standard bibliography of American imprints or any online catalog.

The pamphlet begins by asking "Have you seen yourself to be, by nature and by practice, a lost and helpless sinner?" It recommends a regular program of self-questioning and concludes with words of pious counsel. Admonished to "Flee youthful lusts," students are advised that "Mirth and laughter are not always sinful; but let your indulgence in them be clearly innocent, not very frequent, and never of long continuance."

The appearance of "Questions and Counsel," which was printed in Concord, NH, coincided with a short-lived religious revival at Princeton, in marked contrast to the behavior of many students at the time.

In January 1814, for example, an "infernal machine," consisting of a hollow log filled with two pounds of gunpowder, was set off in Nassau Hall, cracking masonry and shattering glass. In January 1817 a riot erupted when students angry over the length of their reading assignments sealed the entrances to Nassau Hall; attempts to punish the rioters sparked further chaos, in which pistols, clubs and knives were wielded, and the president was struck by a chunk of ice.

Against this backdrop, "Questions and Counsel" extolled the virtues of "true religion" and exhorted Princeton students to "walk with God."

Those who wish to compare this pamphlet with the campus hand- books of today are welcome to visit the Archives at Mudd Manuscript Library, Monday through Friday from 9:00 am to 4:45 pm (8:00 pm on Wednesday).

 

 


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