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'Tis impoffible indeed to lay down any particular Rule to teach Children by; and therefore I fhall only say this to fuch of you as teach School, that I am fenfible a Rod and a Cane are of no Signification (except for Vice) for I have always experienced that an Infant may be cheated into Learning, and Youth will much fooner be perfuaded, than forced into it. Thus much for the firft four Tables.
Tables V. VI. VII. VIII. and IX. contain Words and Leffons from two to four Syllables, fome divided, and others undivided for Trial, with Notes and Obfervations for fuch as have no Inftructor; and I have herein endeavoured to give fuch fuitable Lessons, as may not be burthenfome, and yet inftructive.
expect indeed that fome will fay, 1 am deficient in not laying down more Rules for dividing Syllables; but I have wilfully omitted that, because Authors differ fo much about it; and I know their long Harangues are of no Service, but rather Stumbling-blocks to Learners; for when they read them they are far from understanding, or determining the Matter; therefore I think them puzzling and unneceffary: For it may as well be afferted, that 'tis really neceffary first to understand Algebra, before we learn Arithmetic, as 'tis to affert, that it is really necessary to learn a Child Latin*, before he offers to Speak English; or to puzzle him with the Etymology of Words, before he knows how to read at all. Let eafy Things take the firft Place, the others will follow; and it is certainly the best Way of Inftruction to proceed Step by Step, according to the various Capacities of the Learner, which Nothing but Practice, and the Judgment of the Teacher, can compleat, it being impoffible to lay down any fixed and invariable Rule for this and many other Things.
I shall say no more upon dividing Syllables than this; that to keep up to the Latin, or any other particular Form, is not right; for I think it much better for the Improvement of Children to follow fuch Rules of teaching, that every Word (or Words in general) when dividea, may in every Syllable carry a Sound nearly alike to its A 4
* See Page 94.
ownfelf, or Pronounciation. Thus, in the following Words, which, according to the common, and customary Way, are divided thus, A-fpect, clu-fter, fu-fter, ma-fter, fi-ster, ve-ftry, &c. you will find that young Children cannot pronounce them well, because the firft Syllable is not ftrong and perfect; but let them be taught to divide them thus, Af-pect, cluf-ter, fluf-ter, maf-ter, fif-ter, vef-try, &c. and you will foon fee how natural they will put them together in their full Sound; and the Reafon is, because the firft Syllable is perfect and full.This and feveral other Things (deviating from any ftrict Rule) I have found of great Service to young Beginners, not only when I taught in a public School, but long fince that, in my own private Family- -Thus much for the first Part. See Notes, Page 10, 26, 32, and 45.
PART II. Contains a very short Sketch of the English Tongue, that may be learnt by Degrees, without any Burthen to the Memory, and by which a Lad may foon become acquainted with the common Order of English Grammar, and be better qualified for the higher Branches of Language. See Page 93, 94. In Page 84, I have taken the Liberty to fay that be and are may indifferently be ufed in the plural; and I am fenfible it would meet with Contradiction, or be thought an Error in me, if I did not further explain myself; therefore it is to be noted, be is fingular and plural, and in fome Moods is the fame es am, is, and are, Thus, if I am, or be; if he is or be; if we, ye, or they, are, or be, &c. &c. And though in fome Refpects it is not quite fo modern, yet in many other Cafes it is much more proper. But this I leave to your better Judgment to determine.
PART III. Contains a Collection of Words, in two, three, and four Syllables, of the three fuperior Parts of Speech, viz. Subftantives, Adjectives, and Verbs, which are very much approved of, not only for the Ufe of Schools, but are very ferviceable to Youth in the Shop and Compting-Houfe, and to adult Perfons of every Profeffion, who are quite unacquainted with the Meaning of Words in general, and have not had the Advantage of a liberal Education.
'Tis true, the Explanation is very short, and in many Refpects really deficient; and who pray can expect a Book of this Size Should be quite full and perfect? But if it conveys fuch Ideas to the Learner, to qualify him for the better Understanding of larger Works, that's fufficient.
As for the Accent of the Words, it continues upon the fame Syllable till it is contradicted: Thus, in Page the 96th, at the Beginning of Words of two Syllables, the Accent lies upon the first Syllable for the first five Words; and then it comes on the fecond Syllable, from Accés, till you come to A'ctor. The fame is to be observed in the Tables of three and four Syllables.
PART IV. Confefts of a Variety of Things both in Profe and Verfe, very proper for Writing-Pieces at Breakings-up; fome of which are quite new, and others felected from Abp.TILLOTSON, Dr. SOUTH, Mr. POPE, &c.
'Tis poffible there may be many Errors in this first Edition; but I know of none except thofe in Pages 25, 65, 73, and 92; the first of which is didft, instead of did; the other three are of no Signification to the young Learner, therefore I fhall not point them out, but leave them, with fuch others as may occafionally occur, for your friendly Correction.
In fine, I not only commit, but fubmit the Performance to your fuperior Judgment; and as I naturally expect the common Fate of every Author, to be approved and difapproved of; fo I naturally expect to have Justice done me in confidering the Size and Price; and then, if upon the Whole it appears to be more ferviceable for Children and adult Perfons than Spelling Books in general, a candid Reader will wink at a few Imperfections; and as for the whimsical and cenforious Critic, whofe whole Search and Labour is to find Fault upon the leaft Occafion, and as often without any juft Reafon at all; it is quite reafonable he fhould have fome Reward for his Trouble; which be certainly will, if he applies in a proper Manner as follows.
"A famous Critic having gathered together the Works "of an eminent Poet, made a Prefent of them to Apol"lo, who received them graciously, and promifed to make "the Author a fuitable Return for the great Trouble he
had been at in collecting them together.
In order to this, Apollo fet before him a Sack of Wheat, juft ts as it had been threshed from the Sheaf; and bid him "pick out the Chaff from the Corn, and lay each by itJelf: The Critic applied himself to the Task with great "Industry and Pleasure (vainly puffed up with the Expectation of the Wheat) but after having made a due "Separation, was prefented by Apollo with the Chaff "for his Pains."
HE Rev. Mr. Bearcroft, Chaplain to the Right Hon. Slingsby Bethell, Efq; The Rev. Mr. Thomas Ber
The Rev. Mr. John Egerton.
The Rev. Mr. Fergufon.
The Rev. Mr. Thomas Ber- The Rev. Mr. Fontaine.
The Rev. Mr. Tho. Heck-
Merchants and private Gentlemen, &c.
Edmund Anguish, Efq;
Mr. Henry Deacon, Philo-
Mr. Henry Dell, Philomath.
Mr. John Coulthift, Mafter of the Academy, PrefcotStreet, Goodman's Fields. Mr. Edw. Griffiths, WritMr. Robert Crawford, Writing-Mafter. ing Mafter, of Newington Butts.
Mr. Creech, School-Mafter of Merchant Taylor's School.
Mr. Gauler, Writing-Maf
James Henckell, Efq; and