Extract from Thomas Jefferson to Nathaniel Burwell
|Monticello Mar. 14. 18.|
A great obstacle to good education is the in ordinate passion prevalent for novels, and the time lost in that reading which should be instructively employed. when this poison infects the mind, it destroys it’s tone, and revolts it against wholsome reading. reason and fact, plain and unadorned, are rejected. nothing can engage attention unless dressed in all the figments of fancy; and nothing so bedecked comes amiss. the results is a bloated imagination, sickly judgment. and disgust towards all the real businesses of life.