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PROSE AND POETRY;

COKSIST1NO OP

NARRATIVE, DESCRIPTIVE, ARGUMENTATIVE, DIDACTIC,
PATHETIC, AND HUMOROUS PIECES;

TOOBTHHR WITH

DIALOGUES, ADDRESSES, ORATIONS, SPEECHES, &,;

CALCULATED

TO IMPROVE THE SCHOLAR IN READINO AND SPEAKING; AND

TO IMPRESS THE MINDS OP YOUTH WITH SENTIMENTS

OP PIETY AND VIRTUE.

DESIGNED FOR THE USE OF SCHOOLS AND ACADEMIES.

4

TWENTIETH EDITION.

BY J. OLNEY, A. M.

J.THOR OP " A PRACTICAL SYSTEM OP MODERN GEOGRAPHY AND ATLAS*"

NEW-YORK:
PUBLISHED BY PRATT, WOODFORD & CO.,

No. 63 WALL STREET.

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DISTRICT OF CONNECTICUT, as.

Pt a 1 BE IT REMEMBERED, That on the eighth day of August, in the fifty. j_jj. o.j fourth year of the Independence of the United States of America, Messrs. Goodwin & Co., of the said District, have deposited in this olHce the title of a Bock, the right whereof they claim as proprietors, in the words following, to wit;

"The National Preceptor, or Selections in Prose and Poetry; consisting of narrative, descriptive, argumentative, didactic, pathetic, and numerous pieces: together with dialogues, addresses, orations, speeches, &c.; calculated to improve the scholar in reading and speaking, and to impress the minds of youth with sentiments of piety and virtue. Designed for the use of schools and academies. By J. Olney, Author of ' A practical system of modern Geography and Atlas.'"

In conformity to the act of Congress of the United States, entitled, " An act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, nnd Books, to th« uuthors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned."—And also to the net, entitled, " An act supplementary to an act, entitled, 'An act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of maps, charts, and books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned,' and extending the benefits thereof to the arts of designing, engraving, and etching historical and other prints."

CHARLES A. INGERSOLL,
Clerk of the District of Connecticut.
A tnie copy of record, examined and sealed hy me.

CHARLES A. INGERSOLL,
Clerk of the District of Connecticut.

A PREFACE.

The art of reading well, is a highly valued accomplishment, and in all our schools should be considered of the first importance; it is not only the foundation of good speaking, but it may be termed the basis of a finished education.

Experience has convinced me that it may be eu; I/ taught, by beginning with such lessons as are intelligible and interesting to the learner, and making each selection with reference to the natural progress of the mind. 'Where emotions are excited, there is little need of rules for their expression.

Questions like the following are often asked:—Why do children and youth more frequently fail in good reading, than in any other branch of education? Why do we often hear a youth, whose tones in conversation are varied and agreeable, read in a dull, monotonous manner? Why aro there so few good readers in society? We believe a correct answer will be found in the fact that bad habits have been formed by a practice of reading uninteresting if not •unintelligible exercises. Let any competent judge examine the books used in teaching this valuable art, and he will see that their compilers have hitherto but little known or regarded the taste, wants and capacities of those for whom they have laboured.

The following work is designed for the middle and higher classes in our Academies and Schools. In preparing it, great care has been taken to select such lessons, as are calculated to give exercise to the various emotions of the mind and the corresponding tones and inflections of the voice. It will be found to contain a greater quantity of interesting and useful matter than any other similar work; and the different selections are so arranged as to give the learner a knowledge of reading the various kinds of style, from the simple narrative to the lofty epic. The compiler flatters himself that the work is such an one as has long been needed; and in the earnest hope that it may be found useful to the young in improving their style of reading, and in exciting them to virtuous action,

Humbly submits it to the candor

of an enlightened public.
J. OLNEY.

Hartford, April, 1831.

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