Imatges de pÓgina
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mere trivial acquaintance. To know them thoroughly cannot, indeed, be effected by mere casual reading, but gradually ; as the intercourse becomes more intimate, and the disciple, from being a mere passing acquaintance, becomes a loving friend.

A paragraph, nay a single verse of even a simple ballad, once committed to memory, may lie dormant in the mind for years, and yet at length awake and come back with all its original freshness upon the imagination. But one strain, it may be, will at first recur; but gentle thoughts and associations will one by one steal in, and the partial, or casual, or forgotten acquaintance will be renewed, and the poem of early years will be, as it were, the poet's hand of welcome and friendly greeting.

All young persons learn to repeat poetry with much greater facility than prose. The difficulty lies in choosing for each what is best suited to their taste and habit of mind; in making, in fact, the introduction a pleasant one.

Some prefer at first a simple ballad, or one, perhaps, of stirring and chivalrous spirit, as Chevy Chase; others incline rather to what is more humorous or lively, or descriptive. But each has his own taste; and if it be searched for in a kindly manner, the teacher will have but little difficulty in discovering it, and supplying it with nourishment, until the mere inclination becomes a decided appetite for what is good and excellent. The taste of a child's mind is not always to be ascertained by bare catechetical inquiries, but by careful watching

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as the process of education advances,-education, that is, in its true sense, as distinguished from instruction.

To assist the teacher in this work is one of the objects of the following collection; and it is hoped that he will there find some extracts at least suited to all the various capacities and wants of his scholars.

In Part II. will be found poems of a less easy and simple style than those in the former part, as well as some few better adapted for the more advanced pupil.

To the more general reader, or student, it may haply afford some few kindred introductions, which will lead to a further acquaintance with, and a greater love and veneration for, " the wise and good of ages past.”


B. G. J.

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