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At no period in the history of our country was it less | portant events in the history of his country, and to necessary to offer an apology for introducing a national place at the command of the student for the Civil Serwork on Education than at the present time. So keen is vice or University Examinations all the branches of the competitive spirit of the age, that the advantage of education necessary for his advancement, no effort knowledge in the struggle for advancement is apparent will be wanting. Our ambition is to place in every to all. The mighty power of steam applied to railways English Home an Educational Encyclopædia, invaluable and vessels has developed national and international com- as a manual of study and a work of reference, which,
1 munication to a degree not dreamt of at the commence- whilst simple, progressive, and interesting in its style, ment of the century. Telegraphy presents to our view shall be powerful for the improvement and the advance the daily contemporaneous history of the world; and the ment of its students. Press, relieved from those shackles which impeded its In the three great departments of knowledge which action and fettered its influence, has become a powerful this Work will embrace-History, Science, and Lanmedium for the communication of thought between the guages—the end of such instruction, viz., its practical leading minds of the age. In the political condition of our application to the affairs of life, will be kept steadily in own country a change has been wrought, the consequences view. Science will be taught not merely as abstract of which the boldest prophet avows his inability to predict, truth or an interesting intellectual exercise, but as but which all parties agree will be fraught with good or embodying in all its branches those principles, a knowevil, according to the degree in which the new recipients ledge of which will explain the various phenomena of of power may be possessed of the knowledge to use that the world, and enable us to avail ourselves more power aright. The necessity of Education, therefore, intelligently, and therefore more successfully, of all the which was fiercely combated when this work first saw varied material with which Nature has supplied us. the light, is now universally admitted, and the mode Instruction in Languages—whether living or deadand the system alone remain to be discussed. This truth will be so conveyed as to enable the student not only to was fully recognised by no one more than the late Earl of understand a given set of books in any particular tongue, Derby, the illustrious chief of the Conservative party, and but to make him master of the language itself by he was pleased to accept the dedication of this work to gradual and easy, but yet real and tangible stages. himself. Gratifying as is this complimentary recognition The Historic Sketches, by means of which we shall of the services which the original edition of the POPULAR teach History, will, we hope, render that study no longer EDUCATOR bas rendered in the promotion of National Edu- a mere record of battles, an obituary of kings, a mighty cation, we feel that the basis of our present claim upon the chaos of incident; but will illustrate how each nation has co-operation of all the friends of that great movement con- discharged its functions in the world's history-how each sists in this—that our system has been tested, its efficiency epoch has played its part in the drama of a nation's life. has been proved, whilst a sale of 750,000 copies has testi- A reference to our list of contents will show that under fied, on the part of those for whom it was designed, their various heads will be included every branch of study appreciation of the work and their estimate of its value. which can possibly be useful in the varied walks of life.
But some twenty years have elapsed since the POPULAR The great aim and object of this Work is to enable EDUCATOR first issued from the press, and during that the people to educate themselves. We have only to ask period considerable advances have been made in many of them to realise the magnitude and grandeur of the work the departments of knowledge. To perfect the work in in which they will be engaged if they determine to do accordance with all the discoveries up to the present so. Obstacles will be overcome by united resolution. day, we have found it necessary to introduce many new Every difficulty surmounted will be additional strength subjects, and to re-model many of our old lessons, and for further victories. A good education is the best we shall spare no expense in making these changes as legacy we can leave to our children. It is the best complete as possible. To amuse, to instruct, to elevate, investment we can make for ourselves. The educated will be our constant endeavour. To render the work- man in every walk of life carries with him his own man more perfect in his vocation, the soldier and sailor capital—a capital unaffected by monetary crisis-an better fitted for the higher positions of his profession, investment whose interest is not regulated by the the naturalist more conversant with the beauties of success of speculation-a legacy which none can dispute, Nature, the politician further acquainted with the im- and of which none can deprive.
1 VOL. I.
The following ten combinations of three successive vowels aro LESSONS IN FRENCH.-I.
also called diphthongs, namely :IN commencing these Lessons in French, instead of beginning
iai aiu ieu
uei with a long chapter exclusively devoted to the pronunciation of
uie words, and the variations which are caused in the sounds of Towels and consonants by changes in their relative position, we
Theso diphthongs are thus divided into syllables :have thought it best to enter at once into the construction
ou-i n-ai of the language, and endeavour, without unnecessary delay, in
u-ei as plain a manner as possible, to make our readers familiar with its various idioms and peculiarities. The Section on French
They must, however, be pronounced quickly, and as one syllable. pronunciation will be divided into several portions, one of
Sometimes, also, we find four successive vowels in the same which will be given at the commencement of each lesson in word, namely:French, until the subject is exhausted.
bou-ée. I. THE FRENCH ALPHABET.
The first example-ouai, is composed of two compound vowels, 1. A tolerable pronunciation of any spoken language may be viz.: ou and ai. acquired by imitating the sounds of that language, as uttered by The second example-ouen, is also composed of two compound a living teacher. But the reading and writing of any language vowels, viz.: ou and eu. cannot thus be learnt. The pupil must bring into requisi. In the last exampleouée, the final e is silent, and the three tion something else besides his imitative powers, if he would vowels are thus divided, viz.: ou and é. thoroughly comprehend any language. The alphabet of the 13. THE VOWEL Y.—The vowel y is frequently found comlanguage to be learnt must be exhibited and examined, and bined with other vowels, but in such combinations it is never then mastered.
used as a diphthong. Its use in combination is peculiar, and 2. An alphabet is a collection of different characters called will be fully explained hereafter. letters, each of which represents its own peculiar sound. These 14. THE NASAL VOWEL SOUNDS.—There are certain sounds letters differ from each other in name, form, size, and sound. called nasal vowel sounds, produced by the combination of the Used as vehicles of thought, they must not only be familiar vowels with the consonants m and n, namely:to the eye, but their use, both singly and combined, must be
yn. 3. Two objects are to be before the student whilst perusing These sounds will be explained hereafter. these preliminary lessons on French pronunciation, namely :First. The acquisition of the correct pronunciation of the certain sounds called nasal diphthongal sounds, produced by
15. THE NASAL DIPHTHONGAL SOUNDS.—There are also various sounds of the letters of the French alphabet.
Second. - To learn how to combine and use these sounds, the combination of nasal vowel sounds with a vowel, not nasai, in order to read the French language easily, intelligibly, and
before them, namely:profitably.
ouin. 4. The first object will be accomplished by the aid of analogous These sounds will also be explained hereafter. English sounds; that is, every sound represented by a letter or combination of letters of the French alphabet, will be unfolded, sonants are called liquids, namely:
16. THE LIQUIDS.--The following combinations of the conanalysed, and defined, as far as possible, by means of analogous sounds of a letter or combination of letters of the English alphabet.
The sounds of these liquids are very common in the French 5. The second object will be accomplished by learning a few language, and will be explained hereafter. brief and simple rules, illustrated and enforced by appropriate examples.
SECTION II.-THE ARTICLE. 6. Diligent attention, patient labour, and a determination to succeed, will enable the learner to overcome every obstacle, and
1. In French the article (S 13 (2)]* has, in the singular, a thus make him master of a languago, not only exceedingly distinct form for each gender, as:difficult for foreigners to acquire, but beautiful in itself, and
Le fils, the son. La fille, the daughter, the girl. 00-existent with the triumphs of civilisation.
Le frère, the brothor. La scur, the sister. 7. The student's attention is next directed to the French 2. Before a word commencing with a vowel or an h mute, the alphabet. While the English alphabet contains twenty-six final e or a of the article le or la is cut off, and replaced by an letters, in the French alphabet there are only twenty-five. It apostrophe, leaving the article apparently the same for both has no letter which corresponds to the English w, though it is genders (S 13 (7)], as :occasionally found in French books. It is used only in foreign
L'aïeul (7(e) aieul], tho grandfather. words, and then pronounced like the English v.
L'aïeule [1(a) aieule), the grandmother. 8. The French alphabet is divided into vowels and consonants.
L'hôte (e) hôto], the landlord, 9. THE VOWELS.--The vowels are six in number, namely:
L'hôtesso [1(a) hôtesse), the landlady.
3. There are in French only two genders, the masculine and 10. THE CONSONANTS.—The remaining letters of the alpha or inanimate object, belongs to one of these two genders.
the feminine [$ 4]. Every noun, whether denoting an animate bet, nineteen in number, are called consonants, namely:
Masc. L'homme, the man.
FEM. La femme, the woman.
La table, the table.
L'arbre, the tree.
La plume, tho pen. 11. THE COMPOUND VOWELS.—There are seven compound
Le lion, the lion.
La lionpe, the lioness. vowels, namely :
4. AVOIR, TO HAVE, IN THE PRESENT OF THE INDICATIVE.
Affirmatively. They are thus called because, being united together, each SING. J'ai,
I have. PLUR. Nous avons,
Wo havo. Tu as [$ 33 (1) (2)]Thou hast.
Vous avez, vowel loses its own simple sound, and helps to form another
You have. He has.
Ils ont, m., new sound. They form but one syllable, and are consequently
They have. pronounced by one emission of the voice. 12. THE DIPHTHONGS.—There are six diphthongs, namely:
* References thus [§ 13 (2)] refer to Sections in Part II. of these
Lessons, but by references in Roman numerals, thus, [Sect. I. 30] the They are thus called because, though pronounced as one learner is directed to Sections in Part I., the portion of our " Lessons syllable, the sound of both vowels is distinctly heard.
in French” which we are now commencing.