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READING AND SPEAKING.
IMPROVE THE MINDS AND
REFINE THE TASTE OF YOUTH.
TO WHICH AF PREFIXED
Hules in Elocution,
DIRECTIONS FOR EXPRESSING
THE PRINCIPAL PASSIONS OF THE MIND.
Br NOAH WEBSTER, ESQ.
PRINTED BY STWARD AND WILLIÁIss.
ADVERTISEMENT TO THE REVISED EDITION.
THE American Selection, the well received and much used in schools, has been thought susceptible of improvement; the compiler has therefore made some alterations, omitting some pieces which were believed to be less adapted to interest young minds, and substituting others, which The present cannot fail to be as entertaining as useful. edition comprehends a great variety of sentiment, morality, history, elocution, anecdote and description; and it is believed, will be found to contain moh-interestin matter, as any compilation of the size did.EW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY NEW-HAVEN, SEPT. 1804.
ASTOR, LENOX AND
DISTRICT OF CONNECTICUT, 88 TILDEN FOUNDATIONS.
1899 BE it remembered, that on the thirtieth day of in the twenty-eighth year of the Independence of the United States of America, Noáн WBSTER, jun. of said District, esquire, hath deposited in this Office, the Title of a Book, the right whereof he claims as Author, in the words following, viz. "An American Selection of Lessons in Reading and Speaking, calculated to improve the minds and refine the taste of youth-To which are prefixed Rules in Elocution and directions for expressing the principal passions of the mind -By NOAH WEBSTER, JUN. Author of Dissertations on th English Language, Collection of Essays and Fugitive In conformity to the Act of ungs, the Prompter, &c." the Congress of the United States, entitled an act for the ncourag ment of learning, by securing the copies of maps, charts and books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies during the times therein mentioned.
Clerk of the District of Connecticut,
ALL CHARLES Denison, Clerk.
but great minds have but little admiration, because few things appear new to them.
It happens to men of learning as to ears of corn; they shoot up, and raise their heads high, while they are empty; but when full and swelled with grain, they begin to flag and droop.
He that is truly polite, knows how to contradict with respect, and to please without adulation; and is equally remote from an insipid complaisance, and a low familiarity.
The failings of good men are commonly more published in the world than their good deeds; and one fault of a deserving man will meet with more reproaches, than all his virtues, praise: Such is the force of ill will, and ill nature.
It is harder to avoid censure, than to gain applause; for this may be done by one great or wise action in an age; but to escape censure, a man must pass his whole life, without saying or doing one ill or foolish thing.
When Darius offered Alexander ten thousand talents to divide Asia equally with him, he answered; The earth cannot bear two Suns, nor Asia two Kings. Parmenio, a friend of Alexander's, hearing the great offers that Darius had made, said, Were I Alexander, I would except them. So would I, repiied Alexander, were I Parmenio.
An old age unsupported with matter for discourse and meditation, is much to be dreaded. No state can be more destitute than that of him, who, when the delights of sense forsake him, has no pleasures of the mind.
Such is the condition of life, that something is always wanted to happiness. In youth, we have warm hopes, which are soon blasted by rashness and negligence; and great designs, which are defeated by experience. In age. we have knowledge and prudence, without spirit to exer, or motives to prompt them. We are able to plan schemes and regulate measures, but have not time remaining to bring them to completion.
Truth is always consistent with itself, and needs nothing to help it out. It is always near at hand, and sits upon our lips, and is ready to drop out before we are aware: Whereas a lie is troublesome, and sets a man's invention upon the rack; and one trick needs a great many more to make it good.