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FROM THE DISCOVERY OF NORTH AMERICA TO THE GIÓSE OR
THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE,
Northern District of New York, to um!:
BE IT REMEMBERED, that on the eleventh day of January, in the fiftyfourth year of the independence of the United States of America. A. D. 1830 MOSES EVERANCE, of the said district, hath deposited in this office the title of a book, the ght whereof he claims as author, in the words following, to wit "The American Manual, or New English Reader: consisting of exercises ia Reading and speaking, both in prose and poetry: selected from the best writera. To which are added, a succinct History of the Colonies, fron the discovery DÊ North America to the close of the War of the Revolution; the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution of the United States. For the use of Schools, By Mosea Severance." "An sex
In conformity to the act of the congress of the United States, entitled,
R. R. LANSING,
PELAPS no book that has been introduced into the schools of thi country, has been more deservedly held in high estimation, than the English Reader. It is admitted to unite the most judicious plan, with an excellent selection of matter; but as it has long been the principal reading book used in our schools, and as an occasional change is be lieved to have an enlivening and salutary effect upon the learner, 1 have ventured to offer this compilation to the consideration of those, to whose hands the instruction of youth may have been committed.
Confidence in the favorable reception of this offering arises from the circumstance, th⚫: it presents a selection of nætter, a portion of which is from American authors. A just pride for the literary reputation of our own country, denies the necessity, or even the propriety, of with holding from our youth, in the books of our primary schools, specimens of cur own literature none of which being found in the English Reader.
Of the character of the pieces best calculated for the improvement of learners in reading, a diversity of opinion may be entertained, Should a want of adaptation to juvenile taste be urged, I would reply only, that I have designed it principally for the first class of learners in our commea schools, whose taste it is hoped it may have a tendency to mature. In making the selections, an avoidance of what is ludicrous, and a rejection of what is unchaste, amoral, or offensive to the eye or ear of the most refined, taste, have been strictly observed.
With a view of adding essentially to the value of this volume, not enly in the hands of the learner, but in the hands of the community, I have added a concise history of our country at a most interesting period--the Declaration of Independence--a document which is justly esteemed our nation's boast,-and the Constitution of the United States with all which Americans, neither in youth nor mature age can be too familiar. Should the third part of this book, however, in which these are embraced, be thought not to afford profitable lessons for the exercise of young and inexperienced readers, it may be reserv ed for them, with undiminished value, when in a greater state of ad
Several modern writers on the subject of school education, whose pinions are entitled to much regard, have expressed their belief that no rules for the management of the voice in reading, can be of any value. This opinion, so far as it relates to the younger classes of learners, is undoubtedly correct: but as many of the first principles of locution can be clearly illustrated, and applied to practical use by a 1 Ettle effort on the part of the more advanced learner, it appears to me thet bed this kind, designed for the benefit of schools, must be
deficient without them. Could every school in the country be under the instruction of a master of Elocution, the necessity would in a measure cease to exist. But this, unhappily, is not the case. Many of those who engage in the instruction of youth, require themselves the instruction they are expected to give, and have perhaps no other means of acquiring it, than from these elementary books from which it would be withheld.
In this stereotype edition, some few alterations have been made; but the book contains as much matter as the former edition, and its use with it will not be found very inconvenient. it is now offered to the public in a permanent shape; and from the very favorable reception of the first edition, it will, I trust, continue to receive a patronage commensurate with its value.
UPON THE PRINCIPLES OF GOOD READING.
An ability to read in a correct and interesting manner, has becom indispensably requisite for all who would hold a respectable station in society; and not only should its acquisition be considered as a polit accomplishment, but as a talent, subservient to the purposes of busi ness, and of rational enjoyment.
There are indeed but few persons in this country, who are un able to read with some degree of correctness: yet those who may be called good readers, are less frequently met with than is generally ima gined. Perfection in the art of reading, requires a natural talent, joined to the most persevering industry; and although it is a point to which few if any are ever able to arrive, yet every approach to it is of comparative value, and worth the effort required for its attainment.
Perhaps there cannot be a more unerring standard fixed for read. ing, than to adopt the same easy and natural node that we would in common conversation. In the latter our object is to communicate our own thoughts; in the former to communicate the thoughts of others: and in both we wish to do it in the manner calculated to make us bet understood. By this remark we do not design to recommend to those, who have adopted a careless manner of conversation, the adoption of a similar one in reading; but the same rules which serve to improve the one, may, by their application, have the same happy effect upon the other. But let it be distinctly understood, that no rules can be given for the management of the voice in reading, which, independent of feeling, can insure the object desired. "Emotion," says a distin guished writer, "is the thing. One fush of passion on the cheek, one beam of feeling from the eye, one thrilling note of sensibility from the tongue, have a thousand times more value than any exemplifica tion of mere rules, where feeling is absent."
The observations which we shall make upon the principles of read ing, or manner of delivery, will be comprised under the following heads: ARTICULATION, ACCENT, EMPHASIS, INFLECTION, MONOTONE, and MODULATION, with a few reinarks upon the READING OF VERSE.
A GOOD articulation consists in a clear and distinct utterance of the different sounds of the language; and is one of the most important particulars to be considered. No matter upon what subject, or upon what occasion a man may read or speak to his fellow men, he never will be listened to for any length of time, unless he be distinctly heard, and that without effort on the part of his hearers, No interest of the subject can excuse a rapid and indistinct utterance. Many there are