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SELECTION OF EXERCISES
READING AND SPEAKING,
TO FILL THE SAME PLACE
SCHOOLS OF THE UNITED STATES,
THAT IS HELD IN
THOSE OF GREAT BRITAIN
BY THE COMPILATIONS OF
MURRAY, SCOTT, ENFIELD, MYLIUS, THOMPSON,
BY JOHN PIERPONT,
COMPILER OF THE AMERICAN FIRST CLASS BOOK.
PUBLISHED BY RICHARDSON. LORD, AND HOLBROOK,
HILLIARD, GRAY, LITTLE, AND WILKINS.
District Clerk's Office.
Be it remembered, that on the eleventh day of June, A. D. 1827, in the fiftyfirst year of the Independence of the United States of America, JOHN PIERPONT, of the said district, has Deposited in this office the title of a book, the right whereof he claims as proprietor, in the words following, to wit:
"The National Reader; a Selection of Exercises in Reading and Speaking, designed to fill the same Place in the Schools of the United States, that is held in those of Great Britain by the Compilations of Murray, Scott, Enfield, Mylius, Thompson, Ewing, and others. By JOHN PIERPONT, Compiler of the American First Class Book."
In conformity to the act of the Congress of the United States, entitled, "An Act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of maps, charts, and books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned:" and also to an act, entitled, "An Act supplementary to an act, entitled, An Act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of maps, charts, and books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned; and extending the benefits thereof to the arts of designing, engraving and etching histori eal and other prints."
JOHN W. DAVIS,
Extract from the Records of the School Committee of Boston.
At a meeting of the School Committee of the City of Boston, holden at the Mayor and Aldermen's Room, July 2d 1829,-Voted, That "] Pierpont's NATIONAL READER" be introduced into the public grammar schools of this city, in lieu of " Murray's English Reader," after the visitation of the Schools in August.
Attest, T. W. PHILLIPS, Secretary of the School Committee.
THE favour shown by the public to the "American First Class Book" has encouraged me to proceed to the execution of a purpose, that I formed while preparing that book for the press-the compilation of a Reader, for the Common Schools of the United States, which should be,-what no school book compiled in Great Britain is,-in some degree at least, Amèrican.
It cannot, indeed, be urged as an objection to a British school book, that it is not adapted to American schools; that it consists exclusively of the productions of British authors; that it abounds in delineations of British manners,-in descriptions of British scenery,-in eulogies of British heroes and statesmen,-in selections from British history,-and in pieces, of which it is the direct aim to impress the mind of the reader with a deep sense of the excellence of British institutions, and of the power and glory of the British empire. A book of this character is moving in its proper sphere, and accomplishing the purpose of its author, when it is passing from hand to hand, among the children of Great Britain, introducing them to an acquaintance with their native land, and with those who have adorned it by their genius or their virtues, and thus exciting within them a love of their country, and a resolution to become its ornaments in their turn. That effect produced by the book, its author has gained his object, and has established his character, and secured his reward, as a benefactor of his country in one of its most valuable interests: and it derogates nothing from his merit or fame, to say that his book is not well adapted to those for whose use he did not intend it; for this is but saying that he has not done what he has not attempted to do. It is no disparagement to English laws, to say that they will not do for us. They were not made for us. Nor is it a disparagement to English school books, to say that they are not adapted to American schools. There is not one, among them all, that was designed for American schools. To the compiler of an American School Reader, it would, no doubt, be flattering, to know that his book had found such favour in England, as to be introduced extensively into common schools there. But, though this might be a little flattering to him, it would, probably, seem to him not a little strange, that they had not books of their own in England, better fitted to the schools, under a monarchical form of government, than the compilation of a republican foreigner, which was never intended for them. And would it be to the honour of English literature, or of those men in England, who feel an interest in the prosperity of the state,-and, consequently, an interest in seeing the young so educated, that they may worthily fill its places of honour and trust, to admit, by the general introduction of foreign compilations into their schools, that there is no man in England able to make a good school book, and, at the same time, willing to submit to the labour of making one?
This country has political institutions of its own ;-institutions which the men of each successive generation must uphold. But this they cannot do, unless they are early made to understand and value them. It has a history