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PART First, intended for beginners, contains forty-one simple subjects, all carefully exhibited in outline, and three of them written out in full, as examples of what the learner must aim to accomplish.

PART SECOND, for more mature minds, contains ninetynine subjects of general interest, also in outline, which present to the student a wide range for the exercise of his originality and ingenuity in their treatment.

Many of the general outlines, it will be noticed, have divisions, which, with their respective sub-divisions, afford ample range for single compositions. Therefore, if deemed advisable, certain parts of an outline may be taken as topics for separate and distinct treatment.

Works of like plan and scope have been long used with great success in Germany, a country noted the world over for thorough culture. This volume is now sent out upon its mission, with the hope that it may contribute, in like manner, largely to elevate the standard of good writing among the youth of our country.

OCTOBER 1, 1868.




old age.



66. Why it is so natural to respect


67. The good old times...


68. Should we “ do as others do"...148

69. “ It is more blessed to give than

to receive".....


70. Cheerfulness in the presence of



71. Why does Horace so often praise

the golden mean?...

... 151

72. Why did Cicero, in his old age,

apply himself to the study

of philosophy ?.

. 152

73. The influence which public dis-

course exercised upon the

Greeks and Romans........154

74. Why young persons should vol.

untarily limit their love of

personal liberty


75. Vice has no courage.

. .158

76. Evil communications corrupt

good manners.


77. On visits...

78. Carthage and Rome, England

and France...


79. Epaminondas and Gustavus Adol-



80. Comparison between Socrates

and Seneca...


81. Cicero's oration in favor of King


82. Why so many persons have no


. 170

83. “Know thyself”.


84. Youth


85. Luxury..


86. Memmius' Oration..


87. Value of the study of the class-



88. Characteristics of the Romans. . 183

89. The merits of Augustus in re-

gard to the well-being of the

Roman empire..

. 186

90. Public spirit..


91. National festivals.


92. A golden wedding.

93. Is the world“ a valley of tears ” ? 193

94. Posthumous praise..


95. The Egyptian custom of judging

the dead..


96. Agriculture as a source of civil-



97. Advantages of commerce. 199

98. Idleness the mother of vice. 200

99. Is Europe in danger of relapsing

into barbarism ? ..

. 169







I. Definition.
II. Inclosure.

a. Four walls.

b. Floor and ceiling; direction, height. III. Openings in the walls.

a. Windows. Describe.

b. Doors. Describe. IV. Articles contained in a room.

a. Stove.

b. Furniture ; uses of the same. V. Different kinds of rooms, according to their use.

a. Schoolrooms.
b. Living rooms; parlors, dining-rooms, kitchens, &c.
c. Bedrooms.

d. Offices, studies, libraries, &c. VI. Care necessary.

a. Painting, papering, or whitening.
6. Sweeping, dusting, &c.

c. Ventilating. Write a composition according to the above subject and outline. The following, which is the outline written out, is given as a model.



I. A room is a certain division of a house or other building, usually inclosed by four walls, a floor, and a ceiling.

II. The sides which inclose the room are called walls (a). They have a perpendicular direction. They are often painted white, or some other color, and frequently papered. This adds to their beauty, though not always to their utility: Sometimes, in the houses of the wealthy, we see them ornamented with tapestry, or woven hangings of wool and silk.

The direction of the floor and ceiling (6) is horizontal; their distance from each other forming the height of the room. If a man of ordinary height can, while standing, touch the ceiling with his hand, the room is called low. High rooms have the advantage of being less damp, close, or hot than low ones.

III. To allow the light to enter the room freely, windows (a) are placed in the walls. They consist of glass, set in wooden or metallic frames, and are generally rectangular in form. Windows are so arranged as to be easily opened or shut in airing the room. Much light renders a room cheerful; but there should not be too many windows, on account of the cold air, which in winter will penetrate through chinks beside the frames.

To enter or leave a room, there must be a door (6), which hangs on hinges, and is fastened with a latch, and sometimes also with a bolt or a lock.

IV. A room contains many articles for comfort and convenience. A stove is needful for warming in cold weather. Beds, chairs, sofas, bureaus, tables, &c., and other movable articles, constitute the furniture of rooms, according to their


V. The different kinds of rooms take their respective names according to the use made of them: as a school-room (a), which is an apartment in which the young are instructed; a parlor, a room in a dwelling-house (6) in which to receive

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