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and Key, in the second. In this comparison, he will always find a variety of exemplification, and, in many instances, extended views of the subject.
In forming the Alphabetical Index, it was not the author's sole design to assist the student, in readily discovering particular points of grammar. He wished also to express the most important principles of the art, in short, comprehensive, and striking sentences, calculated to stimulate the learner's curiosity, and to impress the subjects more deeply in his memory.
The author was desirous, that the work should at once form an Index to particulars, and an Epitome of the chief sules and principles of the language.
TO THE DUODECIMO EDITION*.
The principles of knowledge becoine most intelligible to young persons, when they are explained and inculcated by practical illustration and direction. This mode of teaching is attended with so many advantages, that it can scarcely be too much recommended, or pursued. Instruction which is enlivened by pertinent examples, and in which the pupil is exercised in reducing the rules prescribed to practice, has a more striking effect on the mind, and is better adapted to fix the attention, and sharpen the understanding, than that which is divested of these aids, and confined to bare positions and precepts; in which it too frequently happens, that the learner has no further concern, than to read and repeat them. The time and care employed in practical application, give occasion to survey the subject minutely, and in different points of view; by which it becomes more known and familiar, and produces stronger and more durable impressions.
* The Introduction to the Duodecimo Edition, is retained in this volume, for the same reasons that the original Introduction to the Grammar, is
retained in the first volume.
These observations are peculiarly applicable to the study of grammar, and the method of teaching it. The rules require frequent explanation ; and, besides direct elucidation, they admit of examples erroneously constructed, for exercising the student's sagacity and judgment.' To rectify these, attention and reflection are requisite ; and the knowledge of the rule necessarily results from the study and correction of the sentence. But these are not all the advantages which arise from Grammatical Exercises. By discovering their own abilities to detect and amend errors, and their consequent improvement, the scholars become pleased with their studies, and are animated to proceed, and surmount the obstacles which occur in their progress. The instructer too is relieved and encouraged in his labours. By discerning exactly the powers and improvement of his pupils, he perceives the proper scason for advancing them; and by observing the points in which they are deficient, he knows precisely where to apply his directions and explanations.
These considerations have induced the Compiler to collect and arrange a variety of erroneous examples, adapted to the different rules and instructions of English Grammar, and to the principles of perspicuous and accurate writing. It has not indeed bcen usual, to make Grammatical Exercises, in our language, very nuinerous and extensive: but if the importance and usefulness of them be as great as they are conceived to be, no apology will be necessary for the large field of employment, wbich the foliowing work presents to the student of English Gram'mar. If he be detained longer than is common in tiis part of his studies, the probable result of it, an accurate and intimate knowledge of the subject, will constitute an ample recompense.
The reader will perceive that some of the rules and observations, under the part of Syntax, contain a much greater number of examples than others. This has arisen from the superior importance of those rules, and from the variety requisite to illustrate them properly. When a few instances afford sufficient practice on the rule, the student is not fatigued with a repetition of examples, which would cast no new light on the subject.
In selecting the instances of false construction, the Compiler has studied to avoid those that are glaringly erroneous, and to fix upon such only as frequently occur in writing or speaking. If there be any of a different complexion, it is presumed that they are but few, and that they will be found under those rules only, which, from the nature of them, could not have been otherwise clearly exemplified to young persons. The examples applicable to the principal notes and observations, are carefully arranged under the respective rules of Syntax; and regu. larly numbered to make them correspond to the subordinate rules in the Grammar.
In a work which consists entirely of examples, and with which the learners will, consequently, be much occupied and impressed, the Compiler would have deemed himself culpable, had he exhibited such sentences as contained ideas in applicable to young minds, or which were of a trivial or injurious nature. He has, therefore, been solia citous to avoid all exceptionable matter ; and to improve his work, by blending moral and useful observations with grammatical studies. Even sentiments of a pious and religious nature, have not been thought improper to be occasionally inserted in these Exercises. The understanding and sensibility of young persons, are much underrated by those who think them incapable of comprehend. ing and relishing this kind of instruction. The sense and love of goodness are early and deeply implanted in the human mind; and often, by their infant energies, surprise the intelligent observer:—why, then, should not these emotions find their proper support and incentives, among the elements of learning? Congenial sentiments, thus disposed, besides making permanent impressions, may serve to cherish and expand those generous principles; or, at least, to prepare them for regular operation, at a future period. The importance of exhibiting to the youthful mind, the deformities of vice; and of giving it just and animating views of piety and virtue, makes it not only warrantable, but our duty also, to embrace every proper occasion to promote, in any degree, these valuable ends.
In presenting the learner with so great a number of examples, it was difficult to preserve them from too niuch unif rmity. The Compiler has, however, been studious to give them an arrangement and diversity, as agrecable as the nature of the subject would admit; and to render them interesting, as well as inteligible and instructive, to young persons.
Holdgate, near York, 1757.