This book is intended as a sequel to Self-Help, and Character. It might, indeed, have appeared as an introduction to these volumes; for Thrift is the basis of Self-Help, and the foundation of much that is excellent in Character.
king men and women provident is to make them wise.
Prodigality is much more natural to man than thrift. The savage is the greatest of spendthrifts, for he has no forethought, no to-morrow. The prehistoric man saved nothing. He lived in caves, or in hollows of the ground covered with branches. He subsisted on shellfish which he picked up on the seashore, or upon hips and haws which he gathered in the woods. He killed animals with stones. He lay in wait for them, or ran them down on foot. Then he learnt to use stones as tools; making stone arrow-heads and spear-points, thereby utilizing his labour, and killing birds and animals more quickly.
The original savage knew nothing of agriculture. It was only in comparatively recent times that men gathered seeds for food, and saved a portion of them for next year's crop. When minerals were discovered, and fire was applied to them, and the minerals were smelted into metal, man made an immense stride. He could then fabricate hard tools, chisel stone, build