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Late Professor of Mathematics in Belfast College.

“The rules of Arithmetic are formed generally for the use of those who have not arrived
at an age when the reflective and reasoning faculties are sufficiently exercised and strengthened
to enable them to understand fully the principles of the rules which they follow : but it may be
justly doubted, whether the acquiescence in this mode of education is not much too general,
and whether habits of investigation and inquiry are not checked, at least, if not destroyed,
by teaching the student to follow merely mechanical rules, in which the understanding takes
no part.”- Professor Peacock : Encyclopædia Metropolitana, art. Arithmetic.

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In this little book I have endeavoured to expound, 'upon simple and rational principles, the rudiments of the SCIENCE OF ARITHMETIC. With rules I have given reasons : and although the work is designed chiefly for schoolboys and young persons, yet, contrary to the usual practice, I have chosen to regard the learner less as an arithmetical machine than as an intellectual being. I venture to hope, that what I have here done

may meet with some degree of countenance from Schoolmasters and Teachers; and that it


also prove acceptable to the solitary and self-dependent student. This is not an unreasonable hope: for, although so-called Treatises on Arithmetic are very numerous, the number of books really deserving of the appellation is but few. As I have reserved no room here for even the most summary analysis of the following pages, I must leave them to the candid examination of those who may be interested in the progress of this class of educational books. I trust no fault will be found with me for the familiar and colloquial form of exposition I have adopted: any attempt at elevation of style, in works of this kind, is wholly misplaced. I have imagined my own pupils before me; and I have addressed them as I was formerly in the habit of doing in oral instruction. My sole aim has been to be intelligible, and to invest the subject with what interest I could consistently with the preservation of scientific accuracy: but if there be one part more than another, to which I would invite special attention, it is the subject of Decimals, towards the end of the book.

J. R. YOUNG. LONDON, March, 1852.

*** A Key to the work is in preparation : besides solutions in full to all the Exercises, it will contain some additional instructions for the otherwise unassisted learner.

The following Corrections may be made with the pen :-

Page 138, Exercises line 2, for “8,” read “8;” p. 147,

line 3, for“ 58352-74,read “68352-74;" p. 168, last line,

for “3800," read “ £3800;" and p. 177, foot-note, for 4d.

The dividend at p. 160 has been made to differ from the
true dividend by £4 10s. in excess, instead of by 108. in
defect, as was intended; but the work may remain, as it
serves to show how unnecessary it is to pay any attention
to the odd shillings in the process recommended.


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