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FAMILY COUNCIL.

LADIES AND GENTLEMEN OF THE COUNCIL,

UR holidays being over, let us resume our proper functions. In taking your accustomed seats around

he Council table, let me impress upon you the necessity for a sincere, hearty, and cordial attention to your self-imposed duties. It is gratifying to

believe that with most of you the performance of these duties is a real pleasure, for every repetition of an action adds a link to the chain of habit. Your improvement in the several departments of the “ Friend” is decided and encouraging. While some of you excel in Prose Tales, others have become adepts in the construction of harmonious Verse; while a large number find amusement, and healthy mental exercise in Defini. tion, Enigma, and the Family Pastime generally. Nor must I ignore the claims of those who have contributed to the delight of the whole Council by the contribution of Original Music. To each and all of you are due my thanks and congratulations; and

I feel convinced that you will not fail to make known the specialties of your own magazine in your several circles. Your efforts during the past Fear to increase the usefulness and widen the sphere of our joint operations have been attended with marked success, and I confidently rely on your continued patronage and kindly influence.

In the Definition Department, I observe decided signs of intelligent progress, though there is yet room for further improvement. For example, you are too frequently in the habit of defining adjectives by words which properly belong only to the substantive form of those words ; on examining the Definitions in the last Dumber it will be seen that the adjective “ Affectionate " is very generally treated asa noun. A little attention to these matters is very desirable.

For the Definition Prize for December the votes of the Councillors seem to be pretty generally divided between the claims of Maggie Symington and Edward W.H. I have therefore determined to award to each of these Councillors a small Prize Volume.

During the past month, I have received 4s. 9d. in stamps towards the Definition Prize for January. This I have awarded to Mary W., to whom I have forwarded, at her own request, Routledge's one-volume“ Shakespeare," published at 6s. Ivanhoe, the originator of the Definition Prize, kindly announces his intention of prezenting to each winner of this prize a small volume of Poems written by himself. For this graceful act I beg in the name of the Council to tender bim my most hearty thanks.

THE PRIZE DISTRIBUTION FOR 1863. One of the oldest and most valued of our subscribers has favoured us with the following

ANALYSIS OF THE CONTRIBUTIONS INSERTED IN THE “FAMILY FRIEND” DURING THE YEAR 1863, AND ALSO THE NUMBER OF CLASS AWARDS

IN THE FIRST CLASS.

Appears in
First Class.

Tiines.

Prose. Poetry. Moste.

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Lucinda B. contributed
Caractacus
Maggie Symington
Busk
Gipsy
Emma Butterworth
Daisy H.
Ivanhoe
Katrine
Terra Cotta
Ewol Tenneb

Definitions and Enigmas
Zanoni
Rosalie
Illa
Nellie
Gorgonia
Nella
Emma S. P.
Iago
Lilly H.
Max
Adeline A.
Anna Grey
Gilbert Ashton
Mignonette
Ruthenphari
A. de Younge
Stantonville

Definitions.
Blanche Alsington
Kate Sydnas

Definitions and Enigmas
Jane C.
G. Matthewson
Alex. Erskine

Definitions and Enigmas
Charlie F.
Estella
Robt. Johnson
Frances Hope
Lelia s.
Isabel
Edw. Huddlestone
Emma
Carmarthen
John
Harry
Rebecca

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Appears in First Class | Times.

Prose. Poetry. Music.

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Kate Leslie contributed Definitions and Enigmas
Crochet
Florence
Islavernay
Amelia
Adela
Irene
Alice
Chloe
Caller Herrin'
Bella
Victorina
Clarissa
Old Young Boy
Cordelia
Spectator
Eleanora
May Vivian
L. R.
Amy
Robinson's Dog
Peter Parley
Junior
Dora
Snow
Honoris
J. E. A. K.
Violet
Rosie
Carolus
Forget-me. Not
Pauline S.
Sophy E.
J. C. Tildesley
St. Clair

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CONTRIBUTORS IN THE SECOND CLASS.

Prose. Poetry.

Prose. Poctry.

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contributed 6

Craister contributed 1
2
Masetto

1
Jessy L.
1

Mary C.
Stoney

Trebla
1

Clara

1 The Contributors in this Class also sent occasional Definitions and Enigmas.

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In accordance with my promise, I have forwarded to the twenty Councillors first named in the list, a handsome Photograpıhic Album and Certificate of Merit. To the twenty next named a handsome Volume and like Certificate. And to each of the other Councillors a Certificate of Merit. To Ruth, and other Councillors in the Second Class, I also forward Prize Volumes.

I shall be glad to be favoured with the names and addresses of all those Councillors who have not yet received their Prizes or Certificates.

The Pastime Prizes are awarded to Charlie F., for the best Enigma, and to Searles, for the majority of correct solutions. I have therefore forwarded to each of them a volume of “ Cassell's Illustrated Exhibitor," a work I had the honour of conducting in 1862.

Various subscribers have written for my photograph. I beg to refer thern to the advertisment of the “Royal Exchange Portrait Company," my stock of cartes being pretty well exhausted. At the same time I shall be happy to exchange with any of the Councillors, and also to facilitate the exchange of portraits as heretofore.

* Ladies and gentlemen, I trust that my awards will give general satisfaction, and beg to subscribe myself

Your affectionate friend,

THE PRESIDENT. BOUTS-RIMES. In the place of Definitions for the next month please to furnish a verse, with the following endings :

arrive field drive

yield To the writer of the best verse, containing an idea, I will present a PRIL VOLUME.

THE CRITIC.
DEFINITIONS.

| length and vagueness, with counsels for SOUTHEY loved readers who were willing their amendment. Busk ably followed sui and thankful to be pleased without deeming in October. But these faults still flourish it necessary to parse their pleasure like and another friendly attack may hasta a lesson, and considered that reading essays their removal. on taste could no more improve the taste IMMODERATE LENGTH is very objection than the study of a cookery-book could able in a definition; in fact, it destroys i improve the appetite or the digestion. It distinctive character, and transforms it ini is therefore with much diffidence that I an essay. If a clear and accurate concer venture to play the critic; but if the follow- tion has been formed in the mind, the wor ing observations tend to produce any im- should be an exact copy of the idea, a provement in the department for definitions, convey its precise meaning. A superilai such a result will amply apologise for my embarasses and perplexes the sense ; ti attempt.

idea, which ought to be visibly lumina In the “Family Friend” for last July, through the transparent veil of word Caractacus admirably described a model looms dimly through a cloud of smoke. 1 definition as “a clear and precise meaning many definitions the meaning ends beta in the fewest words," and added some its voice; they may be aptly charaeteris excellent remarks on the two most promi- by the old Greek sarcasm, “rivers of us nent faults of the definitions, immoderate I and drops of sense.' Compress yo

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