chapter  XVIII
4 Pages

The Women's Exercises

THE woman was given in the beginning unto man, not only for to aid and assist him but also to be the storehouse of generation. Their first exercise, then, that I will attribute unto her, after that she is married, is to bring forth goodly children, and to assist her husband in this work: for this is the end of marriage. And therefore is she very well and fitly called in Hebrew h:lPj, that is to say pierced, because it is meet that she be pierced, if she will imitate our common mother the Earth, which in the spring-time, desirous to bring forth, openeth her bosom for to receive the rain and dews which the heaven poureth upon her. Now I find that this exercise shall be requisite for them that will inhabit New France to bring forth there store of creatures, which shall sing the praises of God. There is land enough to nourish them, so that they be willing to work; and their condition shall not be so miserable as it is with many in these parts which do seek to employ themselves and do not find wherein; and, albeit they find it, yet very often is their labour unrewarded and unfruitful. But in that country he that will take pleasure, and as it were sport himself with sweet labour, he shall be assured to live out of bondage, and that his children shall yet be in better state than himself was. The first exercise, then, of the woman is to work in generation, which is a labour so fair and so meritorious that the great Apostle St Paul, to consolate them in the pains they take in that labour hath said [I Tim. ii. IS] that "the woman shall be saved through bearing of children, if they remain in faith and love and holiness with modeSty." That is to say, if she in-

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struB: them in such sort that the godliness of the mother may be known by the good institution of the children.