IN 1780, Robert Raikes, proprietor and printer of the Gloucester Journal—a gentleman of no great celebrity at that time went into the suburbs of his city, among the poorest and lowest of the people, to hire a gardener. While conversing with the gardener's wife, he was pained by the noise, degradation, and idleness of the crowd of boys who were constantly interrupting them.

On inquiry he found they were much worse on Sundays. They were then released from their employment, and spent the day in profanity and riot, playing all manner of rude games. He took the idea of doing something to prevent such profanation. The word "try" was so impressed on his mind as to lead to immediate action.

Having found four persons who were accustomed to teach children reading, he engaged to pay them each one shilling for receiving and instructing such children as he should send to them every Sunday.

The children were to stay from ten A. M., to twelve, noon, to return again at one P. M., and after reading a lesson, to be conducted to church. After church they were to repeat the catechism until half-past five, and then to be dismissed. Such was the commencement of the Sunday-school work.

After three years Mr. Raikes wrote to a gentleman in Lancashire: "It is now three years since we began, and I wish you were here to make inquiry into the effect. A woman who lives in a lane where I had fixed a school told me some time ago that the place was quite a Heaven on Sundays, compared with what it used to be. The numbers who have learned to read and say their catechism are so great that I am astonished at it. Sunday afternoons the teachers take their scholars to church a place into which neither they nor their ancestors ever entered with a view to the glory of God. But what is more extraordinary, within this month these little ragamuffins have, in great numbers, taken into their heads to frequent the early morning prayers, which are held every morning at the cathedral at seven o'clock. I believe there were near fifty this morning. They assemble at the house of one of the teachers, and walk before her to church, two and two, in as much order as a company of soldiers."

About 1785, William Fox, Esq., formerly a merchant in London, feeling deeply interested in the education of the poor, and believing that this new system afforded the means of promoting the object, obtained the co-operation of several individuals who were like-minded, and, after a correspondence with Mr. Raikes on the subject, succeeded in forming, on the 7th of September, 1785, the "Society for the Establishment and Support of Sunday schools throughout the Kingdom of Great Britain." Sunday-schools began to increase under the direction of various clergymen, but the great hindrance to their prosperity was the expense of hiring teachers.

In 1784 the teachers were paid one shilling and sixpence for their services every Sunday, but by degrees gratuitous teachers arose, so that in 1794 only six out of thirty were hired.

A short time after the death of Mr. Raikes, Sunday-schools in Gloucester ceased. 

But in the providence of God, about the year 1810, six young men, feeling the necessity and value of such institutions, banded themselves together, and resolved, trusting in God, to revive the work there. They applied to their minister for help, but he refused, saying the children would make too much noise; the trustees refused, saying the children would soil the place; members of the church refused, saying, "they would find no children, no teachers, and no money to pay expenses."

But these young men were not to be discouraged. Accordingly, they met around a post at the corner of a lane, and, taking each other by the hand, solemnly resolved that Sunday-schools should be established in the city of Gloucester. Accordingly, they entered into a subscription among themselves, and although all the money they could raise was fifteen shillings, with that they set to work and formed the first school, with unpaid teachers, in that locality. 

Our Bible Teacher.

"WHATEVER I have tried to do in my life," 

says Charles Dickens, "I have tried with 

all my heart to do well. What I have de- 

voted myself to, I have devoted myself to 

completely. Never to put my hand to any 

thing on which I could not throw my whole 

self, and never to affect depreciation of my 

work, whatever it was, I find now to have 

been golden rules."