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To use,

'Mid such a host of risible powers, Both good and bad, the duty is ours


any, in training youth,
Such as offend not morals or truth.
If, therefore, you purpose no more than this,
I do not conceive the book amiss.


I thought, if you
The purpose knew

Of the work we now have under review,
It would not, could not possibly be,

would think of censuring me.
I'm, therefore, pleased your favor to gain,
And all the more, since that to obtain,
I've been obliged somewhat to explain;
Since others, no doubt, might think the same
Exactly as you did, from the name;
Which, noticing on the title-page,
Put even you, at first, in a rage.
But never mind that; you're all right now,
As you always meant to be, I trow,
Therefore, I make my handsomest bow:

Just dropping here
Into your ear,

That friendly precept, Thomas, my dear, Ascribed to Chilo, the wise old Greek :“ Be careful to think before you speak !"



THESE books are designed to mingle AMUSEMENT with InSTRUCTION, while teaching the important arts of READING, SPEAKING, and DEBATING. They are, it is believed, admirably adapted to this end, and are commended to all teachers, who desire to render the school-room attractive.


Being a choice collection of Amusing Pieces, in Prose and Verse, original and selected; consisting of Dialogues, Soliloquies, Parodies, &c. Designed for the use of Schools, Literary Societies, Debating Clubs, Social Circles, and Domestic Entertainment.


A choice Course of Reading, Original and Selected, in Verse and Prose; wherein WIT, HUMOR, and MIRTH are made the means of awakening interest, sustaining attention, and so imparting INSTRUCTION. Designed to be used either alone, or in alternation with other reading books, in the higher classes in Schools and Academies.


A comprehensive Course of instruction in the Principles and Practice of Public Debate : embracing Rules for Parliamentary practice; Debates in full on several interesting topics ; hints and suggestions to young speakers, in respect to the management of a question; forms of a Constitution and By-Laws for a Debating Society; a great number and variety of Questions for Discussion, as also numerous References to Authorities on debatable subjects.





1. A PAINTER of eminence was once resolved to finish a piece which should please the whole world. When, therefore, he had drawn a picture, in which his utmost skill was exhausted, it was exposed in the public market-place, with directions at the bottom for every spectator to mark with a brush, which lay by, every limb and feature which seemed


2. The spectators came, and in general applauded; but each, willing to show his talent at criticism, marked whatever he thought proper. At evening, when the painter came, he was mortified to find the whole picture one universal blot; not a single stroke that was not stigmatized with marks of disapprobation. Not satisfied with this trial, the next day he was resolved to try them in a different manner; and exposing his picture as before, desired that every spectator would mark those beauties he approved or admired.

3. The people complied ; and the artist returning, found his picture replete with the marks of beauty ; every stroke that had been yesterday condemned, now received the character of approbation. “Well,” cries the painter, “I now find that the best way to please one-half of the world, is not to mind what the other half says; since what are faults in the eyes of these, shall be by those regafded as beauties,”


How happy could I be with either.-Beggar's Opera.

1. “By all the bright saints in the Missal of Love,

They are both so intensely, bewitching fair,
That, let Folly look solemn, and Wisdom reprove,

I can't make up my mind which to choose of the pair !

2. There is Fanny, whose eye is as blue and as bright

As the depths of Spring skies in their noontide array; Whose every fair feature is gleaming in light,

Like the ripple of waves on a sunshiny day.

3. There is Helen, more stately of gesture and mien,

Whose beauty a world of dark ringlets enshroud;
With a black regal eye, and the step of a queen,

And a brow, like the moon breaking bright from a cloud.

4. In my moments of mirth, amid glitter and glee,

When the soul takes the hue that is brightest of any, From her sisters enchantment my spirit is free,

And the bumper I crown is a bumper to Fanny !

5. But, when shadows come o'er me of sickness or grief,

heart with a host of wild fancies is swelling, From the blaze of her brightness I turn for relief,

To the pensive and peace-breathing beauty of Helen!

6. And when sorrow and joy are so blended together,

That to weep I'm unwilling, to smile am as loth; When the beam may be kicked by the weight of a feather;

I would fain keep it even—by wedding them both ! 7. But since I must fix on black eyes or blue,

Quickly make up my mind 'twixt a Grace and a Muse; Pr’ythee, Venus, instruct me that course to pursue,

Which even Paris himself had been puzzled to choose !" 8. Thus murmured a Bard-predetermined to marry,

But so equally charmed by a Muse and a Grace,
That though one of his suits may be doomed to miscarry,

He'd another he straight could prefer in its place!

9. So, trusting that “Fortune would favor the brave,"

He asked each in her turn, but they both said him nay; Lively Fanny declared he was somewhat too grave,

And Saint Helen pronounced him a little too gay!

10. May so awful a fate bid young poets beware
How they sport with their hopes 'till they darken and

wither :
For who thus dares presume to make love to a pair,

May be certain he'll never be accepted by either !


1. The artist was sometimes visited by Rasselas, who was pleased with every kind of knowledge, imagining that the time would come when all his acquisitions should be of use to him in the


world. He came one day to amuse himself in his usual manner, and found the master busy in building a sailing chariot : he saw that the design was practicable on a level surface, and, with expressions of great esteem, solicited its completion.

2. The workman was pleased to find himself so much regarded by the prince, and resolved to gain yet higher honors. Sir,” said he,“ you have seen but a small part of what the mechanio sciences can perform. I have been long of opinion, that instead of the tardy conveyance of ships and chariots, man might use the swifter migration of wings; that the fields of air are open to knowledge, and that only ignorance and idleness need crawl upon the ground.”

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