For Watts the years up to four constituted infancy; from four to eight, early childhood ; from eight to twelve, childhood ; and after that, youth.
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Aaron Hill's The Dis- tinction of Ages had carried the first period up to the seventh year : The seven first years of life (man's break of day), Gleams of short sense, a dawn of thought display.
The ninth year was frequently chosen as the close of childhood.
Neither does space allow even a glance at childhood as it is frequently noticed elsewhere in Middle English literature, for example in the Brome miracle play Abraham and Isaac, in Chaucer's penetrating lines, and in the Poptdar Ballads.
1 Compare The Act, The Preservation of the Health and Morals of Apprentices and Others Employed in Cotton and Other Mills, and Cotton and Other Factories: June 22, 1802.
I owe thanks to the Librarian of Columbia University and to Miss Mudge of the library staff for assistance in procuring books and manuscripts ; to my wife, for careful reading of proof; to Professor W. To him I am deeply grateful for countless suggestions, always pa- tiently and kindly given. Shaftesbury's Characteristics is a definite influence from Thomson to Wordsworth.