Suppose your stock of children too large; and that, by your care for their support, you should be abridged of some of your own luxuries and pleasures. To make away with the troublesome and expensive brats, I allow, would be the desireable thing: but the question is, how to effect this without subjecting yourself to that punishment which the law has thought proper to affix to such sort of jokes. Whipping and starving, with some caution, might do the business: but, since a late execution for a fact of that kind might have given a precedent for the magistrates to examine into such affairs, you may, by these means, find your way to the gallows, if you are low enough for such a scrutiny into your conduct: and, if you are too high to have your actions punished, you may possibly be a little ill spoken of amongst your acquaintance. I think, therefore, it is best not to venture, either your neck, or your reputation, by such a proceeding; especially as you may effect the thing, full as well, by following the directions I have given, of holding no restraint over them.
Suffer them to climb, without contradiction, to heights from whence they may break their necks: let them eat every thing they like, and at all times; not refusing them the richest meats, and highest sawces, with as great a variety as possible; because even excess in one dish of plain meat cannot, as I have been told by physicians, do much harm. Suffer them to stay up as late as they please at night, and make hearty meat-suppers; and even in the middle of the night, if they call for it, don’t refuse the poor things some victuals. By this means, nobody can say you starve your children: and if they should chance to die of a surfeit, or of an ill habit of body contracted from such a diet, so far will you be from censure, that your name will be recorded for a kind and indulgent parent.