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11

THE ENGLISH READER.

PART I.

PIECES IN PROSE.

CHAPTER I.

SELECT SENTENCES AND PARAGRAPHS.

SECTION I.

DILIGENCE, industry, and proper improvement of time, are material duties of the young.

.

The acquisition of knowledge is one of the most honourable occupations of youth.

Whatever useful or engaging endowments we possess, virtue is requisite, in order to their shining with proper lustre.

Virtuous youth gradually brings forward accomplished and flourishing manhood.

Sincerity and truth form the basis of every virtue. Disappointments and distress are often blessings in disguise. Change and alteration form the very essence of the world. True happiness is of a retired nature, and an enemy to pomp and noise.

In order to acquire a capacity for happiness, it must be our first study to rectify inward disorders.

Whatever purifies, fortifies also the heart.

From our eagerness to grasp, we strangle and destroy pleasure.

A temperate spirit, and moderate expectations, are excellent safeguards of the mind, in this uncertain and changing

state.

There is nothing, except simplicity of intention, and purity

NOTE

In the first chapter, the compiler has exhibited sentences in a great variety of construction, and in all the diversity of punctuation. If well practised upon, be presumes they will fully prepare the young reader for the various pauses, inflections, and modu dations of voice, which the succeeding pieces require. The Author's English Exereises," under the head of Punctuation, will afford the learner additional scope for improv ing himself in reading sentences and paragraphs variously constructed.

of principle, that can stand the test of near approach and strict examination.

The value of any possession is to be chiefly estimated, by the relief which it can bring us in the time of our greatest need, No person who has once yielded up the government of his mind, and given loose rein to his desires and passions, can tell how far they may carry him.

Tranquillity of mind is always most likely to be attained, when the business of the world is tempered with thoughtful and serious retreat.

He who would act like a wise man, and build his house on the rock, and not on the sand, should contemplate human life, not only in the sunshine, but in the shade.

Let usefulness and beneficence, not ostentation and vanity, direct the train of your pursuits.

To maintain a steady and unbroken mind, amidst all the shocks of the world, marks a great and noble spirit.

Patience, by preserving composure within, resists the im pression which trouble makes from without.

Compassionate affections, even when they draw tears from our eyes for human misery, convey satisfaction to the heart. They who have nothing to give, can often afford relief to others, by imparting what they feel.

Our ignorance of what is to come, and of what is really good or evil, should correct anxiety about worldly success.

The veil which covers from our sight the events of suc ceeding years, is a veil woven by the hand of mercy.

The best preparation for all the uncertainties of futarity, consists in a well ordered mind, a good conscience, and a cheerful submission to the will of Heaven.

SECTION II,

THE chief misfortunes that befall us in life can be traced to some vices or follies which we have committed.

Were we to survey the chambers of sickness and distress, we should often find them peopled with the victims of intemperance and sensuality, and with the children of vicious indolence and sloth.

To be wise in our own eyes, to be wise in the opinion of the world, and to be wise in the sight of our Creator,are three things so very different, as rarely to coincide.

Man, in his highest earthly glory, is but a reed floating on the stream of time, and forced to follow every new direction of the current.

-d.

The corrupted temper, and the guilty passions of the bad, ustrate the effect of every advantage which the world conrs on them.

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The external misfortunes of life, disappointments, poverty, nd sickness, are light in comparison of those inward disresses of mind, occasioned by folly, by passion, and by guilt. No station is so high, no power so great, no character so mblemished, as to exempt men from the attacks of rashness, alice or envy.

Moral and religious instruction derives its efficacy, not so much from what men are taught to know, as from what they are brought to feel.

He who pretends to great sensibility towards men, and yet has no feeling for the high objects of religion, no heart 1 admire and adore the great Father of the universe, has reason to distrust the truth and delicacy of his sensibility.

When, upon rational and sober inquiry, we have established our principles, let us not suffer them to be shaken by the scoffs of the licentious, or the cavils of the skeptical.

When we observe any tendency to treat religion or morals with disrespect and levity, let us hold it to be a sure indication of a perverted understanding, or a depraved heart.

Every degree of guilt incurred by yielding to temptation, tends to debase the mind, and to weaken the generous and benevolent principles of human nature.

Luxury, pride, and vanity, have frequently as much influence in corrupting the sentiments of the great, as ignorance, bigotry, and prejudice have in misleading the opinions of the multitude.

Mixed as the present state is, reason and religion pronounce, that generally, if not always, there is more happiness than misery, more pleasure than pain, in the condition of man.

Society, when formed, requires distinctions of property diversity of conditions, subordination of ranks, and a multiplicity of occupations, in order to advance the general good by all. In every region, every clime, the homage paid to ingintge whichlity. and in it is the same. is understood In no one sentiment were ever mankind more generally agreed.

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The appearances of our security are frequently deceitful. When our sky seems most settled and serene, in some unobserved quarter gathers the little black cloud in which the tempest ferments, and prepares to discharge itself on our hepa

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moe man of true fortitude may be compared to the castle on a rock, which defies the attacks of surrounding the man of a feeble and timorous spirit, to a hut

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