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27 Mar

Hypatia

[Hypatia], he educated not only in all the qualifications belonging to her sex; but caused her likewise to be instructed in the most abstruse sciences, which are reputed the proper occupation of men, as requiring too much labor and application for the delicate constitution of women.
[…]
That this notion is a vulgar prejudice, the vast number of ladies who have in every age distinguished themselves by their professions or performances in learning, furnishes an unanswerable argument. Whole volumes have been written containing nothing else but the lives of such women, as became eminent in all kinds of Literature, especially in Philosophy; which, as it is the highest perfection, so it demands the utmost effort of human nature.

But leaving these heroines to the search of the curious, I shall confine myself at present to one object worthy all admiration; in doing justice to whom I may be deemed to write the panegyric of the whole sex.

John Toland arguing for female education in “Hypatia”

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