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6. Philosophy of the ancient Greeks. Mention some
of their absurdities and their systems. 7. Philosophy of the middle ages — astrology, alchemy
&c. 8. Conclusion. A noble study; but let it be well
Introduction. Studies which increase our knowledge of human nature hold a high rank: political history, biography, poetry, &c. 1. Literature—the lasting monument of a nation's
mind-closely connected with the history of a
people. 2. Indication of passing events-national excitement
- revolution - religious or political struggles,
&c. 3. Various forms of literature: epic poetry-ballads - the drama - history, biography, fiction, phi
losophy, &c. 4. The abuses of literature; various merits of writers. 5. Every phase of a nation's existence indicated in
the passing literature of the day — ballads,
journals, periodicals, reviews, &c. 6. Ages of English literature, and what produced
them. 7. A general knowledge of European literature, a
necessary part of every good education. 8. Conclusion. The variety, extent, and advantages of this study.
Introduction. Many forms of study, some more popular than others. History included in every system of education.
1. Why the study of history should be so interesting. 2. In what does its utility consist ? 3. Something more than a mere list of facts. Causes,
effects, motives, &c. 4. Show what moral lessons may be drawn from
history. 5. Mention other studies which are involved in the
study of history. 6. Divisions of history: for what purpose. Sacred
and profane, ancient and modern, &c. 7. With what history should we be best acquainted ? 8. Conclusion. The philosophy of history - advan
tages of this study.
III. ON BIOGRAPHY.
Introduction. Many forms of history- biography one : history in miniature. 1. Show the special uses of biography; private cha
racter, mental and moral. 2. How is biography less difficult to understand than
history ? — attention concentrated on the subject
- less distraction. 3. A better example for a rule of conduct in private
life. 4. Can we depend on the truth of biography ? 5. What is autobiography, and what reliance can be
placed on this form of literature ?
6. Biography perpetuates the memory of great men
makes us emulate their virtues, &c. 7. Characters whose lives have been written: sol
diers, sailors, jurists, divines, poets, philosophers,
philanthropists, literary and scientific men, &c. 8. Conclusion. Great variety-wide scope for imita
tion and improvement.
IV. ON POETRY.
Introduction. Various forms of language. Two great divisions — poetry and prose. 1. A distinction to be made between the outward
appearance and the essence of poetry. 2. Appearance — verse, metre, rhyme, &c. (explain). 3. Essence - figurative language - whence does this
originate ? 4. A natural tendency in the mind to believe that
inanimate objects have the power to feel and act. 5. Imagination — the power of throwing expression
and feeling into such objects. 6. Divisions of poetry - hymns, ballads, epic poems,
dramas, lyric, descriptive, &c. 7. Explain the above forms of poetry. 8. Conclusion. Poetry deserves to be cultivated;
it refines, elevates, embellishes, &c.
V. ON LANGUAGE.
Introduction. Many significations of this word; always implies the power of conveying ideas to one another. 1. Two great divisions of language — spoken and 2. The uses and advantages of each division. 3. How writing is an improvement on speech. 4. Every civilised nation has a literary language (bar
barous dialects not to be considered as languages). 5. How a language improves. 6. At one time, no written language in Europe but
Latin. Why? 7. Advantages derived from the study of various lan
guages ; their beauties and defects. 8. Conclusion. Our own language of most impor
tance to us; but others must be studied, if only to understand our own.
ON THE GREEK AND LATIN LANGUAGES.
Introduction. Among the nations of antiquity, the Greeks and Romans the only civilised. 1. Hence their language classical, because it pro
duced such great writers. 2. Greek: plastic, strong, suited to all subjects ; deep
and powerful, yet light and airy, graphic and
lofty. 3. Latin : beautifully adapted to history – dignified,
powerful in satire, impressive. 4. Difference in construction between ancient and
modern languages (inflection). 5. The inestimable advantages of a classical education. 6. But no studies should be pursued exclusively. 7. The works of the ancient classics among the most
wonderful monuments of human genius. 8. Conclusion. General advantages : always a source
of delight ; never can be taken from us.
Introduction. Among the various branches of education, modern languages are prominent. 1. Which are they? English, French, German, Italian,
Spanish. 2. Various motives for studying these languages. 3. Advantages derived from them : - merchants, tra
vellers, general students, &c. 4. Opportunities afforded of judging of differences in
national character by idioms, &c. 5. Power of reading classical authors in the original
- translations always more or less imperfect. 6. Classification of modern languages into Romance
and Teutonic. 7. French, Italian, Spanish (founded on Latin) Ro
mance; German, Dutch, English (Teutonic). 8. Conclusion. Interest and numerous advantages
resulting from this sort of study.
VIII. ON VERSIFICATION.
Introduction. Two grand divisions of language, prose and verse (explain the difference). 1. Mention the essentials of verse. 2. What is meant by accent ? 3. Difference between ancient and modern systems of
versification. 4. Divisions of a verse: metre, feet, &c. 5. Iambic, trochaic, dactylic, anapæstic (explain). 6. Mention in what forms of poetry the above metres