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an author of some merit on the subject of education, was born at

, an author of some merit on the subject of education, was born at Hamburgh in 1723. His father appears to have been a person of a rigid temper, and so frequent in correcting his son with severity, as to drive him from home for a time, during which the boy served as a domestic in the house of a land-surveyor at Holstein. Being, however, persuaded to return, he was placed at the public school at Hamburgh, where he made himself respected by his talents, and the aid he was enabled to give to his indolent schoolfellows. When advanced to the higher class, he attended the lectures of professors Richey and Reimarus, from whose instructions, particularly those of Reimarus, he derived great improvement: but he afterwards allowed that he did not pay a regular attention to the sciences, and passed much of his time with indolent and dissolute companions. He had little disposition for study, and remained for some time undetermined in the choice of a profession. His father was ambitious that he should be a clergyman, and the means being provided, he went to Leipsic in 1744, to prosecute his studies particularly in theology. Here he continued for two years, attending the lectures of professor Crusius, who had begun to philosophize on religion; and these lectures, with the writings of Wolf, to which he also applied, induced a sceptical disposition, which more or less prevailed in all his writings and opinions during his life. In 1749, he was appointed private tutor to the son of a gentleman at Hoistein, and this situation gave him an opportunity of bringing to the test of experience, the plan of an improved method of education, which he had, for some time, in contemplation. The attempt succeeded to his wishes, and his pupil, who was only seven years old, when put under him, and could merely read the German language, became able in the space of three years, not only to read Latin authors, but to translate from the German into that language, and also to speak and write it with a degree of fluency. The young gentleman had also made considerable progress in the principles of religion and morals, in history, geography, and arithmetic.