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it from degenerating into weakness?-Have they often presented to them the unhappy victims of human injustice,-the subjects of misfortune,—the sick in the hospitals,- the unfortunate pareats of a numerous family which they can hardly support by their labor,working people reduced by the fatigues of excessive esertion,innocence oppressed,merit persecuted or despised, -old age, infirm, indigent, abandoned? (What good influence on the developement of the heart and of moral instruction, is drawn from visits to the habitations of the poor, to workshops, hospitals, prisons? 81. How is avarice in children prevented, or how corrected?)
82. Do parents bestow charity through the hands of their children-Or do they furnish them occasions of doing beneficent acts?
83. How are children induced to be generous without ostentation? How are they accustomed to the exercise of gratitude! (Are they made to perceive how disgusting and shameful a vice ingratitude is?)
84. How are children taught to respect the property of others, and to conceive an aversion for theft?
85. How are they encouraged to speak the truth,-how penetrated with a holy abhorrence of lying?
86. How are they inspired with a contempt for envy, raillery, detraction, and pride?
87. How is the tendency to idleness corrected or eradicated?What success is obtained in getting them to love labor?
88. How are they taught to be moderate in pleasures, and patient in pain?
89. What is the internal regime of secondary schools?-Is the discipline mild and paternal, or harsh and severe?
90. What faults are most common; and what kinds of punishment is it customary to inflict on children, according to the nature of the fault and of circumstances? What moral effect do these chastisements seem to produce?
91. Are pains taken to remove vices, prejudices, foibles,-to moderate and direct the passions,—to awaken moral sentiments, to form habits,to cultivate conscience and reason ?-Is use made in this view of all the means suggested by the daily circumstances of life, which might conduct to the desired end?
98. Are children early trained to the exercise of thought and reason, applied to the direction and examination of their conduct, in such a manner that when they shall have come to youth and mature age, they may easily do without an external guide, in whatever concerns them, and trust themselves to their own judgement?
99. Does instruction produce a harmonious developement of the soul, under the influence of a moral and religious conviction, internal and deep, which constitutes conscience,- of solidity of principles adopted by conscience and reason, as rules of conduct,-of force of character and of will, to resist the temptations of the passions, and the contagion of bad examples,-in fine, of external conduct,-of social acts and relations!
(All these things ought to be taken in connection, and in harmony, that the child may, of his own accord, be essentially virtuous and happy.)
100. Are children made acquainted, (as wisely suggested by Basedow,) with virtue on its good side and vice on its bad; that they may become truly good men, and not hypocrites,—that is to say that they may not have merely their own interest in view, when they do good? (The study of morality ought to be through the medium of a parental instruction on good and evil, right and wrong; that children may not act virtuously from a fear of their superiors or superintendents, or the mechanism of habit, but from the result of their own conviction.)
The Class Book of American Lilerature; con sisting principally of
selections in the departments of History, Biography, Prose Fiction, Travels, the Drama, Popular Eloquence, and Poetry: from the best writers of our own country. By John Frost. Boston, 1826. 12mo. pp. 312.
The multitude and variety of reading books which have appeared within the last five years, seem to some persons to be a subject of regret, rather than of congratulation. To us this affair presents itself in a very different light. We rejoice that the progress of improvement in education is such, that neither parents nor teachers are disposed to be satisfied with books which have little to recommend them, but the rhetorical finish of the pieces they contain, or the celebrity of the authors from which they are compiled.
Indeed, it seems to us that one of the most decided advantages in education, which are now offered to the young, consists in the character of their reading manuals. A compiler does not think it sufficient that he has embodied merely a volume of « lessons:' he feels bound to present a book which shall prove instructive and interesting. To be intelligible and useful, are now the leading objects in such works; and “readers,' or 'class books,' are to be VOL 1.
had, in almost every department of knowledge which can be ren. dered serviceable to the purposes of life, or which can be made interesting to the feelings of the young.
The most rigid advocate of economy in education would, we presume, admit the propriety of a literary reading book in all our schools—even in the humblest. A moderate relish for literature, as one of the refined pleasures of life, which preoccupy the mind, and fortify it against the solicitations of lower enjoyments, we are glad to see aided by such works as the one before us. It will not only
-if we do not over-rate its merits-be a useful book in schools, but a pleasant companion for moments of leisure in families of every class. But it is a work peculiarly suited to enliven the fireside winter hours of our agriculturists, and at the same time silently elevate the tone of intellect and of taste.
As a book for schools this manual will be very acceptable both to pupils and teachers. It abounds in interesting subjects; it is characterised by a peculiar simplicity; it is replete with patriotic associations; and its literary style is, in most cases, of the happiest character for a favorable influence on the taste of young readers.
The style of elocution likely to be produced by this work, is that which every teacher would wish to cultivate in his pupils; but which the formal and sometimes unintelligible language of most reading books, tends very much to prevent or destroy. A natural, chaste, and animated manner of reading, will never be wanting; if the pieces used for practice are such as the learner understands and relishes. The selections which compose the present volume, are, in this respect, well adapted for good reading. They relate mostly to familiar or striking events in American history; and where the pieces are more general in their character, their animation and freedom still sustain their interest to the feelings of the young.
On the propriety of restricting his book to selections from American authors, Mr. Frost has the following judicious observations.
• The compiler is by no means desirous to exclude from our schools the classical writers of great Britain. He only wishes to have our own presented to the young collectively; and when it is remembered that there is a period during the liberal education of every youth in this country, in which he is required to devote himself exclusively to the classical writers of Greece and Rome; and another, in which the more accomplished scholar acquaints himself with those of France,
Italy, and Germany; wbile a man can scarcely claim to be intelliigent, who is not well acquainted with the history and literature of
England ; it will surely not be thought unreasonable, that there should be one stage in the course even of common education, in wbich the brightest periods in the history and the finest specimens in the litera. iure of our own country, should claim the exclusive attention of the young by being presented to them in a daily reading inanual.'
of the merits of this Class Book as a specimen of American literature we have not room to say much. This is a point in which it is not always an easy matter to satisfy the general taste. Some adult readers may be disappointed at not finding in it their favorite passages in favorite authors; and some will perhaps forget that the compiler's object was to select matter suited for young scholars in common schools. Pieces of an elevated literary character it is not difficult to find; but such pieces are not always accommodated to the standard of juvenile minds.
For our own part, we think that, even in this respect, Mr. Frost has been very successful. His extracts are rich and varied: they form a volume which we should not feel reluctant to see current in other countries besides our own, as an acknowledged specimen of our national literature.
STRICTURES ON MURRAY'S GRAMMAR.
(Concluded from page 560.)
We come next to the Verb.
Murray's definition of a verb is, 'A verb is a word that signifies to Be, to Do, or to suffer; as I am, I rule, I am ruled.'
We infer that to Be does not mean to do or to suffer; and to Suffer means neither to be nor to do.
The first part of the definition, to Be, then, does not express any action according to Mr. Murray. We shall not go back to the origin of this complex verb which, more than any other, has puzzled grammarians; but merely state that the verb to be and its variations are fragments of five different verbs, not one of which signifies abstract being, and all of which govern objects like active verbs. We shall endeavor to show that be is an active verb, and has all the properties of one, and if we establish this position, it will be unnecessary to say any thing about the action of other neuer verbs.
If to be does not imply action, what is the difference between being and not being?
If to be does not imply action, how happens it that Do not be the fool, and Do not act the fool mean the same thing?
If to be does not allow action, how cap a person be active?
God said 'Let light be.' Either nothing was done in obedience to this command, or what was done is expressed by the word be.
• To talk of industry is not to be industrious.
Be diligent, be active, be moving, if you would be, or become or get rich.'
In all these cases Be expresses at least the exertion of vitality, and it is no objection to say that this exertion is confined to the agent, for a hundred other verbs are said to confine their action to their agents.
To Be means to exist, to live, to have a state or condition: so say our best dictionaries. Either of these defining words may take an objective case after it.
To exist a miserable existence,
It will not do to say that to exist a man' or 'be a slave', means to exist like a man, or be like a slave. For to be like a slave and to be a slave are very different things.
Murray says 'the verb to be through all its variations has the same case after it as that which precedes it.'-And after giving some examples, he adds ‘By these examples it appears that this substantive verb has no government of case, but serves in all its forms as a conductor to the cases, so that the two cases which are the next before and after it, must always be alike.
As the possessive case does not follow the verb to be, as its object, and as the nominative and objective are always spelled alike, Mr. Murray mistook the objective for the nominative. Under his XIth rule of syntax, his examples are all of pronouns, and only prove, what is the fact, that our pronouns once had no distinction of case. Had he given one instance of a noun before and after the verb, we should have taken it to illustrate our position. But let us see what he says farther on this subject.
Perhaps this subject will be more intelligible to the learner, by (his or my?) observing that the words in the cases preceding and following the verb to be, may be said to be in apposition to each other, that is, they refer to the same thing, and are in the same case.'
Op-position would have been more correct as they are on opposite sides of their conductor.' What he means by calling the verb to be a conductor of cases, I cannot imagine. He should have