Imatges de pàgina
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This little book, though expressly compiled to assist candidates who intend to present themselves before the Civil Service or other Examiners, will, it is believed, be found of use to the more advanced pupils in elementary and higher schools. As it gives almost all the words of common use in our language which exhibit orthographical difficulties, School Inspectors will find it convenient as a means of testing the proficiency of children in the still much-neglected but most useful Art of Spelling. Appended are sixteen DICTATION EXERCISES recently set by the Civil Service Commissioners, all taken from the best writers and of


The sale of one thousand copies, of which the first edition of this book consisted, in less than four months, is a sufficient proof of the want of such a compilation. This edition has been carefully revised, and about one thousand additional words inserted in their respective classes. Specimens of Examination Papers have also been added, which were set by the Examiners just before we went to press.

In the FOURTH EDITION numbers of Dictation exercises have been inserted written on the progressive principle so as to suit the proficiency of every learner. .


SPELLING is the art of expressing words by their

proper letters.

WORDS are articulate sounds, used by common consent, as signs of our ideas *

A SYLLABLE is a distinct sound, uttered by a single impulse of the voice.

A word of one syllable is called a monosyllable; a word of two syllables a dissyllable; a word of three a trisyllable; and a word of four or more syllables, a polysyllable.

A LETTER is the first principle, or least part in a word.

Our Alphabet consists of 26 letters, which are divided into vowels or letters that can be perfectly sounded by themselves, and consonants, which can only be sounded with the aid of a vowel.

We consider it quite sufficient for the present little book to give the long and short sounds of the vowels, which will be found at page 21.

The following remarks will be found useful :


B is silent when it follows m in the same syllable; as, dumb, lámb.t It is also silent when followed by t in the same syllable; as, doubt, debtor.

* Words of the same sound are called paronymes ; words of the same meaning are called synonymes.

† It is sounded in rhomb and succumb.

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C, at the end of a syllable, and before a, 0, U, r, l, and t, sounds like K; as, cart, cot, curious, craft, cloth, flaccid. It has the sound of s before e, i, and y; as, centre, cigar, mercy. In a few words it is silent; as, czar, indict, victuals.

D sometimes sounds like j; as, soldier.
F in one word-of, sounds like v.

G, at the end of a word, or before a, 0, u, l, and r, is hard ; as, bag, gay, got, gun, glory. It is soft before e, i, and y;* as, genius, ginger, Egypt.

H is silent after r; as, rhubarb.
J has the same sound as soft g; as, serjcant.

K, before e, i, and y, has the sound of c hard; as, kept, skirt, murky. It is silent before n; as, knife, knocker.

L is often silent; as, half, calm.
N, when ending a syllable and preceded by m, is silent; as, hymn.
P is silent often; as, in psalm, Ptolemy.

Ph very often has the sound of f; as, physic, philosophy; and sometimes the sound of v; as, in Stephen, nephew.

Q is always followed by W.

R has two sounds, a rough one, as in Rome, river; and a smooth one, as in bard, card. In the unaccented termination re, it is sounded after e; as, fibre, centre.

S is sometimes sounded like z; as, in besom, nasal; and it is often mute; as in isle, viscount.

T.-Ti before a vowel, preceded by the accent, has the sound of sh; as in salvation.

V has uniformly the same sound, and is never silent.

W is silent before r; as in wrap, wrong. When heard as a vowel it sounds like w; as in draw, now.

X has frequently the sound of ks; as in exit, exercise; and sometimes like gz ; as in exert, exhort. At the beginning of a proper name, taken from the Greek, it has the sound of 2; as Xenophon, Xerxes. Y, when used as a vowel, has the sound of i; as in rhyme.

• There are a few exceptions :-get, gimlet, gewgaw.

bad bast | bath I bee bla blit blot blou bon bor bou bre bre bric

bro bro bru bud bru

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