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THE ESSENTIALS OF PRONUNCIATION, ACCIDENCE, SYNTAX ;
WITH COPIOUS EXERCISES FOR READING, CONVERSATION,
TRANSLATION, PARSING, ETC., AND PRACTICAL
INSTRUCTIONS ON EPISTOLARY

CORRESPONDENCE.

| FOR THE USE OF SCHOOLS AND PRIVATE STUDENTS.

BY

M. MICHEL, B. A.

OF THE UNIVERSITY OF PARIS;
FRENCH LECTURER TO THE CHURCH OF SCOTLAND TRAINING COLLEGE,

EDINBURGH, ETC.

EDINBURGH:
THOMAS LAURIE, COCKBURN STREET.
LONDON : SIMPKIN, MARSHALL, & CO.

303. g 29.

EDINBURGH: T CONSTABLE, PRINTER TO THE QUEEN, AND TO THE UNIVERSITY

PREFACE.

NOTWITHSTANDING the large number of French Grammars already existing, there is still generally felt a want of one that would combine THEORY and PRACTICE in better-balanced proportions ; contain everything necessary and useful to lead to a clear and comprehensive knowledge of the French language, but, at the same time, be free from those lengthy explanations and superfluous de. tails that confuse the pupil and check his progress; and, above all, one that would render the acquiring of the language more attractive to the pupil, and the imparting of it less trying, less burdensome, and more interesting to the teacher.

In the present work we have endeavoured to satisfy each of these conditions. Our plan is as follows :

The ESSENTIALS have been condensed and simplified as much as is consistent with lucidity and precision, each rule being illustrated by clear and carefully selected examples.

In accordance with the only rational system in the learning of a living language, that of IMITATION, as adopted by all eminent teachers and grammarians, we have given a double set of EXERCISES ; the one French, intended to be used for reading, parsing, and translation into English, the other English, for translation into French. Moreover (and this is a novel and important feature of the work, to which we would call special attention), an additional exercise for CONVERSATION has been introduced in the shape of a QUESTIONNAIRE or set of questions, relating to the phrases of the foregoing French exercise. This will form a graduated, methodical, and interesting series of conversational lessons. Simple and easy at first, the questions and answers become by degrees more and more complicated, and, by being brought into contact with all parts of speech, will assume every possible shape, thus containing all the elements of colloquial language. As a foundation for general conversation, this new exercise will prove of great value to every class of students.

The EXERCISES, both French and English, are of reasonable length, and composed of carefully chosen and sensible phrases, intended,

1 The key to these exercises is given at the end of the book to help the pupil in the preparation, and for re-translation. See the Plan of Instruction, p. xi.

not merely to strike the ear of the pupil, but also to speak to his

mind and awaken his interest. For, what advantage can possibly be

derived from exercises wholly composed of such sentences as these?

-Le livre de mon cousin est plus utile que celui de ma cousine ; or,

Avez-vous vu le cheval de mon oncle ? Non, mais j'ai vu celui

de votre tante. It must require no ordinary amount of exertion

on the part of the teacher and good-will on that of the pupil, to

keep up for any length of time interest in a lesson having for its

subject such trivial topics. The invariable result is to weary, dis-

hearten, and disgust, not only the ordinary class of students, but

even, and we should say a fortiori, the most intelligent and eager of

them.

The IRREGULÁR VERBS have been arranged on an improved plan,

and their conjugation given in full.

The SYNTAX, founded on the recent decisions of the French

Academy and the purest writers of the present day, has been much

condensed and simplified; it contains the essence of all that is

required for a thorough and intelligent acquaintance with the

mechanism of the French Language, without entering into those

minute cases that can be safely taught only by practice and the

reading of French authors; nor into those subtleties that belong

only to the province of the grammarian or of the philologist.2

An important addition has been made at the end of the book,

consisting of a series of MISCELLANEOUS EXERCISES, for translation

from English into French, with foot-notes. These are well gra-

duated in difficulty, and intended as a finishing course for the pupil

who has fairly mastered all the rules of grammar and can read

with fluency an easy French writer.

The book closes with a few practical pages on letter-writing in

French.2

We have given a PLAN OF INSTRUCTION at the beginning (see

page xi.)

M. MICHEL

EDINBURGH, July 1867.

1 It may be a matter of surprise to those accustomed to see in the hands of

young pupils such ponderous grammars as are unfortunately too commonly used

in this country, to learn that these volumes contain many more details, and enter

into many more particulars, than any of the class-books studied in France through-

out the whole curriculum of a commercial or classical education.

2 The Key to the Miscellaneous Exercises obtainable by teachers and self-

students. Price 1s.

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