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The more natural vivacity and ingenuity young people possess, the less are they likely to be amused with the toys which are usually put into their hands. They require to have things which exercise their senses or their imagination, their imitative, and inventive powers. The glaring colours, or the gilding of toys, may catch the eye, and please for a few minutes, but unless some use can be made of them, they will, and ought to be soon discarded. A boy, who has the use of his limbs, and whose mind is untainted with prejudice, would in all probability prefer a substantial cart, in which he could carry weeds, earth, and stones, up and down hill, to the finest frail coach and six that ever came out of a toyshop...

The Works of Maria Edgeworth. Volume 11: Practical Education (1798) Chapter 1: Toys


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