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seem to be conservatism and skepticism. The quette as the French, but has more real dig. Germans are slow to try a novel experiment, nity and stability; more thought and princiand they accept the ipse dixit of no man. Where ple; while, on the other hand, it is less ethethe skeptical tendency has predominated, it rial and speculative, but more animated and has produced an etherial, speculative, ration practical than the German. The genius of the alistic element of character, and where the language, according to these very principles conservative has been in the ascendency, it and peculiarities of the people employing it, is

has resulted in a cold, technical, minute and well adapted both to the easier forms of con{ rigid logic. All this is apparent in the struc- versation and sociality, and to the more rigid

ture of their language, and is observable in terms of logic and the most technical metatheir literature no less than in the daily life of physics. the people. In ease and grace, conciseness By comparing the Anglican language of the land animation, the general structure of the present day with what it was two centuries language is quite deficient. The style is dis

since, the change exhibited will aptly illuscursive,---by no means conversational-and trate in what respects the race has made proI the sentences are long and complicated. The gress and where it has retrograded. But it simple meaning is often mystified by a vast should here be observed that in comparing pile of parenthetical clauses. They seem of one age with another, less difference of style ten to use language as a sheath for the mean- will be found among the more polished and fing, rather than as a simple dress in which to refined writers, than among those of the ordipresent the meaning to the listener or the nary class; since the former are conversant reader. Indeed, it is no uncommon thing to with the best classics of past times, while the

find a single undivided sentence occupying language of the latter is moulded more by the lone, two, and sometimes three complete print- mass, upon which existing customs exert the ed pages.

strongest influences. • The peculiarities of the French are quite Another illustration of our subject may be Klifferent from those of the Germans. As a drawn from the peculiar differences of the charpeople they are noted for their politeness, sua- acter of the people of Old and New England vity and sociability, their fickleness and want at the present day, which can be quite cor. of logic. Perhaps there is no language rectly determined by comparing their literawhich so clearly exhibit all of these charac- ture. Although it is true that some English teristics, as the French. Its sentences are and American authors differ comparatively litterse, perspicuous, brief. Its periods short, tle in style, yet with the great mass there may Tapid, unelaborate. It possesses a peculiar be observed, on the one side, an easy, conadaptation to conversation, a fitness for the servative, phlegmatic style, which indicates fireside, the drawing-room, and the social the settled character of the mother country, gathering.

and her attachment to the Recepti inter veThe English is rather a medium between teres mores ;” and on the other, a more active the two, being neither so terse and conversa- energy, a more fiery zeal, and often a more tional as the French, nor so tedious and techni- earnest desire for advance, with consequently cal as the German. This is a direct result of a far less respect for the ancient landmarks, national characteristic. The English mind is plainly showing the character of young Amernot so shackled by the artistic rules of eti- lica.

The evidence of a new country is seen also hickory preserving in after years the very diin coarse, rough words, and provincialisms, rection which his own tiny hands had given it which are introduced to express the peculiar when a mere shrub. customs of the section whence they have arisen. But, to take a more specific example of this

Our geographical names, e. g., “ Dismal reciprocal influence, we may adduce the efSwamp," “ Big Bone Lick," and “ Cape fect of the introduction of new words from Lookout,” are generally less elegant and eu- new customs, and the decay of others. As phonic than those of Europe. This arises language is solely for the accommodation of principally from the heterogeneous sources of the people, when, by some change of custom, their derivation, coming, as they do, from a word is no longer needed, it immediately some circumstance connected with the early falls into disuse, and exists only in the literahistory of these places, from their natural ap- ture of the past ; “ Letters, like soldiers," as pearance, or from the aborigines of the coun- Horne Tooke says, “ being apt to desert and try.

drop off in a long march.” Or, it may change The influence of custom upon language is its signification as the custom it symbolizes manifest in the varied style of different writ- changes, and be used with a new meaning, ers. As we judge the unknown by the known, the same dress, but covering a very different we must continually use similes and compari- personage. This process is constantly going sons, and it has often been remarked that the on in every spoken language. early occupation and manner of life of a writ- On the other hand, some new circumstance er may be known from the character of his takes place, some new custom arises, or some comparisons. Franklin's epitaph, in which old one must needs be revived with a new he compares his body to the “ Cover of an dress, and must certainly be christened with an old book, its contents torn out, and stript of appropriate appellation. Hence a new word its lettering and gilding,' forcibly remind us is coined to supply the demand, or an old one that he was a printer, and that his life from is set apart and baptized for that specific use. early youth was spent among books.

We have in our political language a very The sweet bard of Israel, when he says, expressive appellation for a certain class of • The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want, men, often, indeed, too numerous for our he maketh me to lie down in green pastures, country's weal, whom we call “old fogies." he leadeth me beside the still waters,” plainly I suppose—although the word is not given in tells us that in early life he was a shepherd the dictionaries, and I have never met with boy. So we may naturally suppose that the its derivation that it is derived from the author of the adage, “ As the twig is bent, word “fog,” or, 'as its former orthography the tree is inclined,” sat, in his boyhood, be- was, “Fogge,” which signifies dead grass, neath the gnarled oak, and played among the which remains in pastures during the winter, tender saplings, watching their growth from and is therefore applied to one who is one year to year, perhaps intertwining their generation behind the times, and only a branches to form his summer arbor, where he hindrance to the growth of society. might withdraw from the scorching heat of Much is learned from the history of words, the summer solstice and spend the hours of retaining their form but changed in significachildish innocence beneath its cool, refresh- tion, of the history of the past. For examing foliage, and thus had witnessed the huge / ple, in speaking of a man who subscribes his

name to a written document, we say, he "signs We may therefore.observe, that, by the anhis name," by no means intimating that he alysis of language, we perceive the true conmakes a sign or mark for his name, although nection of the present with the past. “The that custom-which was undoubtedly the most familiar words and phrases being conorigin of the phrase-is shown by the word nected,” as an old writer says, “ by impersign. This phrase shows an elevation of so-ceptible ties, with the reasonings and discovciety since its introduction into the language; eries of former men and distant times. Their whereas we often find in the history of words knowledge is an inseparable part of ours ; the evidence of retrogression.

the present generation inherits and uses the The Latin word conjuratio originally meant scientific wealth of all the past.” merely “a swearing together,” which might We may observe, also, that language, like be for a good or a bad purpose, but as men of all else, is subject to change and decay, and tener took an oath for some wicked design, it that each age and each individual leaves his finally came to denote " a banding together impress upon it. Hence it is in evidence that for unlawful purposes.”

our age, and each one of us, especially the Not unfrequently the history of a word

teachers of the young, should leave upon a shows some logical process of reasoning, by

language, which is spoken by the two most which a new inclination has been given to its

powerful and most enlightened nations of the

world, whose literature is more extensive and meaning. The primal signification of the Greek Kogues

valuable than that of any other language, of was "order," "arrangement,” but it was sub

modern or ancient times,-a language which sequently applied to the "world,” inasmuch

may yet be spoken by all christendom,-an im

press which will honor our memories in after as there was evident in the arrangement of all

times and be a blessing to ages yet to come. things such perfect order. This new application of the word speaks volumes for the age whence it originated.

For the Schoolmaster. In this age of speculation and theory, many

Education Necessary to Arrest Natural

Tendencies to Degeneracy. are violently crying out against classical study; but should such reflect, they might perceive that every year our language is greatly enriched by the accession of new words and phrases |

There is in all things a proneness to deterfrom the noble languages of Homer and Vir- ioration. Illustrations of this principle are gil, to pass by those received from our sisters, I numerous in the natural world. They are of. the French and Spanish.

ten met with by the gardener, the farmer, the It is a distinguishing feature of our lan- shepherd. A garden, if neglected, runs to guage, that it readily adopts as its own words waste. A house unoccupied, or a ship lying from foreign languages, and thus increases its unused at the wharf, rapidly decays. A flexibility and power. We use many more farm, if uncultivated, declines in value. Its words of foreign extraction than did our fa- tendency to degeneracy and barrenness can be thers, in consequence of which the old Saxon arrested only by diligent culture, by a rotawords have been restricted in their signification of crops, and by a generous enrichment tion, and more precision and nicety of expres of the soil. Many plants speedily degenerate ion given to them.

under neglect. Only the most skillful and at




tentive culture, can prevent them from declin- To these may be added the masses in our cit

ies and in sparsely inhabited regions who are Illustrations of this proneness to degener-neglecting the means of education and are acy may be found also in the history of na- deteriorating in enterprise, intelligence and tions. All history testifies that those nations virtue. Now how are we, as a nation, to eswhich have preserved to themselves the ad- cape the corrupting influence of such ignovantages of an enlightened civilization, have rance without the diligent appliance of the done so only by a constant and energetic means of education? How are parts of this struggle against the downward currents of nation to be saved from relapsing into barbarsocial decline that have ever set powerfully ism, and going down, at least, below the caagainst them. How many nations, by these pacity to rise, without the elevating power of currents, have been speedily swept down to knowledge ? social disorganization and ruin. Nations that have struggled up to the heights of civiliza

For the Schoolmaster. tion, have stood there only while they have

The Message. contended, with a watchful eye and a strong arm, against the besetting tendency to deterioration. As soon as they remitted their efforts against corrupting influences, they sunk Cloudless set the burning sun, into, anarchy and barbarism.

Shades of twilight had begun

And the miner's work was done. Of all beings that inhabit the earth, man most needs culture. And although suscepti From New England's far off shore, ble of high cultivation, he is ever prone to run Dear to him forevermore, down to an inferior rank. It is only by the Came a message wafted o'er. united influence of government, religion and

And it breathed in accents low, education that this downward tendency can

“ Wheresoe'er thou go be successfully resisted. Whenever these, the

Kindest wishes round thee flow, three great pillars of civilization, are removed or become weak, the social fabric falls.

Friendship is a golden grain.”

Memories dear awake again, The importance of education as a conserv

Like the flowers in summer rain. ative power in our republic to preserve the people from a retrogressive course, can hardly Musing on his lonely lot, be over-estimated. Through its neglect in Half he thought himself forgot, parts of Virginia and North Carolina, great

Buried in that unknown spot. bodies of the people, whose ancestors were

“ friendship is a golden grain;" educated men, of cultivated manners, have

To one heart across the main deteriorated in valuable qualities of character It was not a message vain. and sunk almost below the point of civiliza-l Feather River, Cal., Feb, 20, 1858. tion. It is well understood that there are, all along our western frontier, a body of men

So far is it from being true that men are nat(whose fathers were well cducated and intel-lurally equal, that no two people can be half an ligent) who are sunk to a very low grade of hour together but one shall acquire an evident character. This class is annually increasing. superiority over the other.


For the Schoolmaster.

fore the fall of the Western Empire and the Ancient Coins.

modern, those which have been struck since.

The first copper coins of Greece, known,

are those of Gelon, king of Syracuse, about Not to the antiquarian alone belongs the 490 B. C. There is no proof of gold coinage right to make ancient coins a part of study in Greece before Philip of Macedon. Athens and research. They stand forth as prominent had no gold money at the commencement of and truthful guides to one tracing the events the Peloponnesian war, 431 B. C. of by-gone ages; they serve to explain many About this time money began to be used at of the obscure passages in the writings of the Athens to sway the judgment of the officers. ancients; they preserve the delineations of Plutarch tells us « that in Athens the first some of the most beautiful edifices of olden man who corrupted a tribunal was Anytas, time, not now even existing in their ruins,-in the son of Anthynion, when he was tried for fact they form an almost indispensable part treason in delivering up the fort at Pylos, at of the world's history. In the later part of the latter end of the Poloponnesian war.” the Greek series, they illustrate the chronol | The earliest Roman coin was copper, issued ogy of reigns. In the Roman series they fix in the reign of Servius Tullius, 578 and 534 the dates and succession of events.

B. C. Silver coinage in Rome took place 266 The word “coin” is derived by some from B. C., and the coinage of gold, according to the Greek, Konvos, common ; by others, from Pliny, about 206 B. C. the Latin, cuneus, a wedge, as probably the The barbarian coins were those of Lydia, first currency was in the form of a wedge or Persia, Judea, Phænicia, Numidia and Maningots.

sitania, Carthage, Spain, Gaul and Britain. Through all of the early part of scripture, It is stated that Alexanıler the Great, upon and in the poems of Homer, we search in vain his conquest of Persia, 331 B. C., ordered the for aught to indicate the use or even the exist. Darics melted down for his own coinage. ence of stamped money. Herodotus speaks Hebrew coins were struck under the dominof the Lydians as the first who coined gold ion of the family of the Maccabees, and chiefand silver into money, while the Parian ly in the time of Simon, the high priest, 150 Chronicle ascribes its origin to the Æginetans, years B. C. They were nearly all copper, and under Pheidon, king of Argos, 895 B. c. rude in workmanship. The Phænician coins This is corroborated by Ælian in his “Vari- are not considered older than the reign of ous History," and the best versed antiqua- Alexander the Great, and principally referred rians are of the opinion that this statement is to the cities of Tyre and Sidon. The Numidcorrect.

|ian coins are those of Juba I. and II., about The Lydian coins are probably next in an- 50 B. C. The Carthaginian coins were struck tiquity, and then the early Daries of the Per- off by Greek artists. Spanish coins illustratsian kings, probably coined between 522 and ed the different nations by which its colonies 486 B. C., in the reign of Darius the First. were settled. The impress of the ancient

Coins are divided into two classes, ancient coins of Gaul was but a rude device, yet afand modern. The ancient is divided into ter they mingled with the Romans, some of three divisions, Greek, Roman and Barbarian. their coins bore an inscription which looked The ancient coins comprise those issued bea like Latin, principally in single words, and

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