Puritans and the Trivium

I recently finished an audio course on the History of Christianity in America. As part of the coursework, I wrote several posts to a community forum on things of interest to me in what I was learning. this is one of those:

I spent six years as a teacher—and learner!—in a classical Christian school (2001-2007). Recently, I was looking over the list of things that the Puritans considered basic education, I see a lot of familiar stuff. The Grammar schools taught Latin. From Grammar school through college, the basis of the education was Grammar, Logic and Rhetoric (the Trivium). In addition, students learned English, arithmetic, Geometry, Astronomy, Metaphysics, Ethics, Natural Science, Ancient History and the Greek and Hebrew languages.
There were some basic assumptions about the nature of the church and her relationship to the state (and perhaps some other things) which were to bring about the dissolution of the Puritan way. But I, for one, love their approach to education!
In particular, I find the Trivium to be deeply biblical. If our God has revealed Himself in the Person of His Son, and that Person is communicated to us as the living Logos, there are some implications to be made. Christ is Living Communication from God to man. He is Grammar (information). He is Logic (sensible interrelation of concepts). And he is Rhetoric (artful expression). I have found, too, that these roughly parallel what Speech Act theorists have called the Locutionary, Illocutionary and Perlocutionary acts… but that it is a subject for another time. 


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