05 January 2012

1906 observation of Jews

It is always cute to run into your nation in other people's books.
I found this today in a treatise on education, written in 1906 by a Christian Englishwoman:

"The writer is familiar with a German watering-place much frequented by Polish Jews of the poorer sort, sent thither probably by benevolent brethren of their race. These men are by no means phlegmatic; groups of three or four will engage in talk for hours at a spell, enviably earnest talk, impersonal, one would gather, from the faces of the speakers, and not like the chatter about baths and symptoms to be heard in passing other groups of talkers.... But the curious thing about all these men, whether of the ruddy or dark type, is their tranquility of aspect; their faces are like those of little children, simple, interested, untroubled, and very free from lines of anxiety. Is it that, like Goethe, they are aware of themselves only as "sheep of His pasture," and for the rest, take life as it comes?"

Charlotte M. Mason, Studies in the Formation of Character, pp. 415-416.

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