Practical English Composition: Book II. - For the Second Year of the High School
by Edwin L. Miller
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Transcriber's note Printer errors: A number of printer errors and some punctuation errors have been corrected, but inconsistent hyphenation has been left as in the original. Details of the printer errors can be found in the HTML version of this eBook. Text encoding: The poem "METRICAL FEET" used either a breve or a macron over each syllable. Here we have rendered the macron syllables in capitals and the breve syllables in lower-case. To see the correct characters, use the UTF-8 text or HTML version of this eBook.

Directions for Correcting a Theme

When a theme is returned to you, number each correction, and draw a heavy circle about the number. Then take another sheet of paper, and using the numbers that correspond to those on your theme, state in each case the error you made; then correct it, and give your reason for making this correction: for instance, if the mistake is marked W, i.e. a word misused, state whether the word to which the critic objected is not in good usage, or is too often repeated, or does not give the idea intended. Next, supply the proper word and show that it fits the place. Answer any questions asked by the critic and follow out any suggestion given. Put the sheet of corrections in proper form for a M.S. Fasten the sheet to your original theme and hand both to the teacher in charge of the laboratory. No credit will be given for any written theme until the mistakes are corrected.

The following signs are used to indicate mistakes in a theme:

C—Capital needed.

lc—No capital needed.

A—Mistake in use of the apostrophe.

S—Word misspelled.

P—Mistake in punctuation.

G—Mistake in grammar.

W—Wrong word used.

Cons—The construction of the sentence is poor.

D—The statement is ambiguous.

O—Order. This may refer to arrangement of words in a sentence, of sentences in a paragraph, or of paragraphs in a theme.

U—The sentence or paragraph lacks unity.

X—Discover the mistake for yourself.









This volume is the second in a series of four, each of which has been planned to cover one stage in the composition work of the secondary-school course. These books have been designed to supply material adapted as exactly as possible to the capacity of the pupils. Most of the exercises which they contain have been devised with the idea of reproducing in an elementary form the methods of self-instruction which have been employed by successful writers from Homer to Kipling. Nearly all of them have been subjected to the test of actual classroom use on a large scale. They may be used independently or as supplementary to a more formal textbook. Each volume contains rather more work than an ordinary class can do in one hundred recitations.

In each volume will be found exercises that involve each of the four forms of discourse; but emphasis is placed in Book I on description, in Book II on narration, in Book III on exposition, and in Book IV on argumentation. Similarly, while stress is laid in Book I on letter-writing, in Book II on journalism, in Book III on literary effect, and in Book IV on the civic aspects of composition, all of these phases of the subject receive attention in each volume.

In every lesson of each book provision is made for oral work: first, because it is an end valuable in itself; second, because it is of incalculable use in preparing the ground for written work; third, because it can be made to give the pupil a proper and powerful motive for writing with care; and, fourth, because, when employed with discretion, it lightens the teacher's burden without impairing his efficiency.

Composition is not writing. Writing is only one step in composition. The gathering of material, the organization of material, criticism, revision, publication, and the reaction that follows publication are therefore in these volumes given due recognition.

The quotation at the head of each chapter and the poem at the end are designed to furnish that stimulus to the will and the imagination without which great practical achievement is impossible. On the other hand, the exercises are all designed on the theory that the sort of idealism which has no practical results is a snare. Indeed, the books might be characterized as an effort to find a useful compromise between those warring types of educational theory which are usually characterized by the words "academic" and "vocational."

The specific subject of this volume is newspaper writing. The author has himself had enough experience in practical newspaper work to appreciate the difficulties and to respect the achievements of the journalist. He knows that editors must print what people will buy. It seems probable, therefore, that instruction in the elementary principles of newspaper writing, in addition to producing good academic results, may lead pupils to read the papers critically, to discriminate between the good and the bad, and to demand a better quality of journalism than it is now possible for editors to offer. If this happens, the papers will improve. The aim of this book is therefore social as well as academic. It is also vocational. Some of the boys and girls who study it will learn from its pages the elements of the arts of proof-reading and reporting well enough to begin, by virtue of the skill thus acquired, to earn their bread and butter.

For the chapters on advertising I am indebted to Mr. Karl Murchey, of the Cass Technical High School of Detroit, Michigan. Mr. John V. Brennan, Miss Grace Albert, and Miss Eva Kinney, of the Detroit Northwestern High School, have rendered me invaluable help by suggestions, by proof-reading, and by trying out the exercises in their classes. Mr. C. C. Certain, of Birmingham, Alabama, and Mr. E. H. Kemper McComb, of the Technical High School, Indianapolis, by hints based on their own wide experience and ripe scholarship, have enabled me to avoid numerous pitfalls. My thanks are due also to Mr. Francis W. Daire, of the Newark News, and Mr. C. B. Nicolson, of the Detroit Free Press, who have given me the benefit of their experience as practical newspaper men. Above all, I am indebted to my friend, Mr. Henry P. Hetherington, of the Detroit Journal, whose untimely death in June, 1914, deprived me of a never-failing source of wisdom and a critic to whose ripe judgment I owe more than I know how to describe.

E. L. M.



"Whoever wishes to attain an English style, familiar but not coarse, and elegant but not ostentatious, must give his days and nights to the volumes of Addison." SAMUEL JOHNSON. Life of Addison.

"Children learn to speak by watching the lips and catching the words of those who know how already; and poets learn in the same way from their elders." JAMES RUSSELL LOWELL. Essay on Chaucer.

"Grammars of rhetoric and grammars of logic are among the most useless furniture of a shelf. Give a boy Robinson Crusoe. That is worth all the grammars of rhetoric and logic in the world.... Who ever reasoned better for having been taught the difference between a syllogism and an enthymeme? Who ever composed with greater spirit and elegance because he could define an oxymoron or an aposiopesis?" THOMAS BABINGTON MACAULAY. Trevelyan's Life of Lord Macaulay. Chapter VI.




"Truth is the highest thing that man may keep." CHAUCER.

I. Introduction

The object of this book is to teach high-school boys and girls how to write plain newspaper English. Next to letter-writing, this is at once the simplest and the most practical form of composition. The pupil who does preeminently well the work outlined in this volume may become a proof-reader, a reporter, an editor, or even a journalist. In other words, the student of this book is working on a practical bread-and-butter proposition. He must remember, however, that the lessons it contains are elementary. They are only a beginning. And even this beginning can be made only by the most strenuous and persistent exertions. English is not an easy subject. It is the hardest subject in the curriculum. To succeed in English three things are required: (1) Work; (2) Work; (3) WORK.

II. The Newspaper

The modern city newspaper is a complicated machine. At its head is usually a general manager, who may be one of its owners. Directly responsible to him are the business manager, the superintendent of the mechanical department, and the managing editor.

The business manager has under him three sub-departments: (1) Advertising; (2) Circulation; (3) Auditing. To the first of these is entrusted the duty of taking care of those small advertisements which, owing to the fact that each occupies only a line or two, are called "liners"; the management of a corps of solicitors; and the maintenance of amicable relations with the business men of the community. The circulation department includes not only the management of local and foreign circulation, but also the collection of money from subscribers, dealers, and newsboys. The auditor keeps the books, has charge of the cash, and manages the payroll.

The superintendent of the mechanical department has three subordinates. These are the foreman of the composing-room, the foreman of the pressroom, and the foreman of the stereotyping-room. Each, of course, always has several assistants and often many.

The managing editor has charge of the collection and distribution of news. He has no routine duties, but is responsible for the conduct of his subordinates, for the character of the paper, and for its success as a business enterprise. The relation of the paper to the public is in his keeping. Not infrequently he has serious differences of opinion with the business manager, especially when he publishes news which does not please important advertisers. Among his chief occupations are devising methods of getting news and avoiding libel suits. The subordinates who report directly to him are the writers of special columns, the cartoonists, the editorial writers, the editor of the Sunday paper, and the assistant managing editor, or news editor. It is with the latter and his staff that we are at present chiefly concerned.

The news editor, or night editor, as he is called on a morning paper, has charge of all the routine that is involved in the production of the paper. Its make-up is in his hands. An autocrat on space and place, he is seldom praised, but must take the blame for everything that goes wrong. Under him are: (1) A telegraph editor, whose business it is to handle news from outside the State; (2) a State editor, who directs as best he may a horde of local correspondents who represent the paper in the rural and semi-rural districts; (3) one or more "rewrite men" or copy-readers, whose business it is to write out the news sent in by telephone, to correct the errors of illiterate reporters, and to rewrite articles when necessary; and (4) the city editor.

This last functionary is frequently the most important man on the paper. He is responsible for gathering nearly all of the original news that goes into its columns. To be able to do this he must have a wide and exact knowledge of the people and the history of the city. He works like a slave; and the reporters, who are under his direct control, find in him a stern but appreciative taskmaster.

These reporters, or news-gatherers, lead a strenuous but not unhappy life. It is somewhat like that of the huntsman, their business being to stalk news, which is perhaps the biggest and certainly the most elusive game which the world produces. Their lives are sometimes, their liberty oftener, and their jobs always, in danger. If one of them permits a rival paper to get a "scoop," he is apt to find himself in the situation of the warrior described in Shakespeare's sonnet:

"The painful warrior, famoused for fight, After a thousand victories once foiled, Is from the book of honour razed quite, And all the rest forgot for which he toiled."

Some reporters hunt everywhere; others are assigned to special "beats." Of the latter the city hall is the most important, but the central police station yields the largest number of good stories, because it is there that tales of human folly, crime, and tragedy are most promptly known. On most papers the law courts, politics, sport, drama, religion, education, marine affairs, and society provide other "beats."

The organization thus briefly sketched is fairly typical, though by no means universal. The outline on page 5 may make it a little clearer.

{Liner Department {Advertising Manager {Street Men { { {Newsboys { {Local Dealers {Business {Circulation Manager {Mailing Department { Manager { {Collections { { { {Auditor {Bookkeeping { {Treasury {Sup't of {Composing Room { Mechanical {Stereotyping-Room { Dep't {Pressroom { General { {Editorial Manager { { Writers { {Cartoonists { {Special { { Writers { { {Editor of {Artists { { { Sunday {Special Writers {Managing { { Paper { Editor { { { {Telegraph { { Editor {Assistant { { Managing {State Editor { Editor { { or {Copy-Readers, { News { or Rewrite {City Hall { Editor { Men {Police { {Politics {City Editor, in {Stock Market { charge of six {Courts { to twenty-five {Sport { reporters {Society {Marine {Religion {Drama {Music

Good reporters are not numerous. The reason is that, to succeed in this work, a man or a woman must be able to gather news and to write. There are plenty of people who can do either, but few who can do both.

In order to get news one must be physically tireless, fond of adventure, persistent, unabashed, polite, courageous, and resourceful in the highest degree. To the successful reporter an impossibility is only an opportunity in disguise. In his lexicon there is no such word as "fail." He must know how to make and keep friends. He must have that kind of originality which is called "initiative." Above all, he must be scrupulously honest. He must be actuated by a fixed determination to get the news, the whole news, and nothing but the news.

In order to write well one must be able to spell, punctuate, and capitalize; know the laws of grammar and how to apply them; be familiar with the principles of rhetoric; and have a wide acquaintance with good books. These qualities are not usually found in company with those which make a successful news-gatherer. A person who has both is therefore worth his weight in gold to a newspaper. The fact that this combination of qualities is so rare leads many papers to employ special rewrite men whose business it is to put into good English the raw material furnished by the news-gatherer.

One other newspaper functionary remains to be noticed, the writer of editorials. News items are confined to facts. Editorials contain expressions of opinion. Everybody reads news, because it speaks for itself. Editorials are designed to mould public opinion. Unless they are characterized by extreme good sense or brilliancy, nobody heeds them, though, if he makes a mistake in one, the writer of editorials is apt to conclude that everybody reads them. The writer of editorials must therefore be a person of exceptional qualifications.

III. Class Organization

For the present the teacher of the class studying this book may act as city editor and the pupils as reporters. Later, perhaps, a more formal organization may be effected, with pupils as managing editor, assistant managing editor, city editor, etc.

IV. Newspaper Cooeperation

The editor of the local paper will probably be willing to print any really good material that the class produces. If possible, an arrangement for this purpose should be made with him. It is also possible that he may be willing to supplement this chapter by talking to the class.

V. Topics for Oral Discussion

1. What Is a Newspaper? 2. The History of Journalism. 3. Why is a Study of Journalistic Writing Practical? 4. The Organization of a Newspaper. 5. The Managing Editor. 6. The Composing-room. 7. The Business Manager. 8. The Assistant Managing Editor. 9. The Telegraph Editor. 10. The State Editor. 11. The City Editor. 12. The Reporter. 13. "Beats." 14. "Scoops." 15. Editorials. 16. The Gospel of Work.

VI. Suggested Reading

Kipling's The Man Who Would Be King and The Light That Failed.

VII. Memorize


Tell me not, in mournful numbers, Life is but an empty dream, For the soul is dead that slumbers And things are not what they seem.

Life is real, life is earnest, And the grave is not its goal; "Dust thou art, to dust returnest," Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment and not sorrow Is our destined end or way; But to act, that each to-morrow Find us farther than to-day.

Art is long, and Time is fleeting, And our hearts, though stout and brave, Still, like muffled drums, are beating Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world's broad field of battle, In the bivouac of Life, Be not like dumb, driven cattle! Be a hero in the strife!

(Continued on Page 13.)



"Facts are stubborn things." LE SAGE.

I. Assignment

Find and report some unusual and interesting thing that has been made or done by boys or girls. Do not get your information from literature. Get it from life. Above all, don't make it up. It must be fact, not fiction.

When the city editor gives a reporter an assignment, he does not expect to answer questions. The reporter's business is to give the city editor copy, not to rely on him for information. The reporter who does not promptly learn this fact soon ceases to be a reporter.

II. Getting the Facts

In all writing the gathering of material is more important than any other one thing. In reportorial work it is almost all-important. Almost anybody can tell a story if he has the facts. Energy, persistent politeness, and a pair of stout legs are more essential in reporting than is a large vocabulary. The pursuit of news is always a fascinating and sometimes a dangerous game. If you do not believe this, read Fighting in Flanders, by E. Alexander Powell; or The Events Man, by Richard Barry. Above everything else, remember that the most uncompromising adherence to facts is essential.

Do not make the mistake of supposing that newspaper men fail to recognize the importance of telling the exact truth. They strive constantly and strenuously to do so. In the office of the New York World there used to be, and probably still is, a placard on which Joseph Pulitzer had printed these three words: "Accuracy, ACCURACY, ACCURACY." All reporters strive constantly to be accurate. If they do not always succeed, it is due to the difficulty of the task. They have to work fast lest the news grow cold. Usually they write in the midst of an uproar. When you are disposed to find fault with them by reason of their carelessness, remember that Sir Walter Raleigh, unable to determine the facts concerning a quarrel that occurred under his own window, concluded that his chance of telling the truth about events that happened centuries previous was small.

III. Writing

In preparing manuscript the typewriter in these days is almost indispensable. The value to a reporter of a course in typewriting is therefore obvious. It is also obvious that copy must be letter-perfect. Before it can be printed, it must be entirely free from mistakes in spelling, punctuation, capitalization, and the other essentials of good usage.

IV. Model

The following article is clipped from a New York daily. In what it says and leaves unsaid it is an excellent model.


Hundreds of persons were attracted yesterday to Brook Avenue, near One Hundred and Forty-ninth Street, to inspect the handiwork in snow of three fourteen-year-old boys.

They had built a thick-walled cottage, 25 feet high and with 15 x 16 feet ground dimensions. Roof and walls, inside and out, had been smoothed; and a coat of water had turned the snow house into a shimmering glaze.

The interior was divided into four rooms, all bearing out the truthfulness of the sign tacked up without, which read: "House to let, three rooms and bath." Even the bath, modeled in snow, was there. Rugs, tables, chairs, and sofas made the Esquimau edifice cozy within; and an oil stove kept eggs and coffee sizzling merrily at dinner time.

The builders were three days at their task. They are Tom Brown, of No. 516 East One Hundred and Forty-seventh Street; Arthur Carraher, of No. 430 Brook Avenue; and Walter Waller, of No. 525 East One Hundred and Forty-fifth Street.

V. Notes and Queries

1. State the reason for the use of each capital letter and each mark of punctuation in the model.

2. Tell whether each sentence is simple, complex, or compound.

3. Explain the syntax of each adverb in the model.

4. Point out three words or phrases that have color, character, or distinction.

5. What is the subject of each paragraph?

6. Are the "Four W's" sufficiently indicated? Point them out.

7. Study the heading. The art of writing good headings is almost as difficult as that of writing good poetry, which it resembles in that, as the poet is limited to a certain number of syllables, the writer of headlines is limited to a fixed number of letters.

VI. Suggested Time Schedule


Discuss Sections I, II, and III of this chapter. Send the class to the board and dictate the model as an exercise in spelling, punctuation, and capitalization. Review last week's work.


Recitation on Notes and Queries.


Oral Composition: i.e., each pupil will bring to class his news article—not written but in his head—and be prepared to deliver it to the class as if he were a reporter dictating to a stenographer or telephoning his report to his paper.


Profiting by Wednesday's discussion, the pupils will write their articles and hand them to the teacher, who will proof-read them and return them on Monday.


Public Speaking—Organize the class as a club. Let the officers arrange a program consisting of declamations, debates, essays, dialogues, etc. This day may also be used for the reading of the best articles that members of the class have written.

VII. Organization of Material

After you get your story, you must decide on a plan for its discussion. This will depend largely on its nature. Indeed, the plan and the style of any piece of writing are to the material as are the clothes to the body. They must fit the body. The body determines their shape.

The model in Section IV is a bit of exposition composed partly of description and partly of narration. Its framework is as follows:

Par. 1. The "Four W's": Who=hundreds of people; What=handiwork in snow; When=yesterday; Where=Brook Avenue near One Hundred and Forty-ninth Street.

Par. 2. The Exterior of the House.

Par. 3. The Interior.

Par. 4. The Architects.

VIII. Some Possible Subjects

1. The Gas Engine that Jack built. 2. A Profitable Garden. 3. How a Boy earned his Education. 4. A Cabinet. 5. How to bind Books. 6. Stocking and keeping an Aquarium. 7. How to build a Flatboat. 8. How to make Dolls from Corn-Husks. 9. Metallic Band Work. 10. A Sled made of Ice. 11. Silk Culture. 12. Chickens. 13. A Good Notebook. 14. A Sketch-Book. 15. A Successful Composition. 16. Skees. 17. A Paper Boat. 18. Toys made in the Manual Training Rooms. 19. A Hat. 20. A Dress. 21. The best subject of all, however, is none of these, but one that the pupil finds himself.

IX. Suggested Reading

Elbert Hubbard's A Message to Garcia.

X. Memorize

A PSALM OF LIFE (continued from Page 7)

Trust no future, howe'er pleasant! Let the dead Past bury its dead! Act, act in the living Present! Heart within and God o'erhead!

Lives of great men all remind us, We can make our lives sublime, And, departing, leave behind us Footprints on the sands of time;

Footprints that perhaps another, Sailing o'er life's solemn main, A forlorn and shipwrecked brother, Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us, then, be up and doing, With a heart for any fate; Still achieving, still pursuing, Learn to labor and to wait. HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW.

TO TEACHERS. At this point a review of Chapter V, "Proof-Reading" and Chapter VI, "The Correction of Themes," of Practical English Composition, Book I, will be found an invaluable exercise.



"Lives of great men all remind us We can make our lives sublime." LONGFELLOW.

I. Assignment

Write a biographical note of about two hundred words concerning a citizen who has just come into public notice.

II. Obtaining the Facts

If the subject of the note is already distinguished, the facts can usually be collected from books and periodicals. Poole's Index of Periodical Literature will point the way. Most newspapers keep an indexed mass of biographical material, which, of course, is at a reporter's disposal. When these sources fail, the man himself must be interviewed, which is a task that requires tact, politeness, persistency, a good memory, and a clear idea of the character and quantity of the information needed.

III. Models


James McHenry was born in Ireland, 1753; came to Philadelphia, 1771; studied medicine under Dr. Benjamin Rush; served in the Revolutionary War as surgeon; became Washington's secretary, 1778; sat in Congress, 1783-86; was a member of the Constitutional Convention; was Secretary of War under Washington and Adams, 1796-1801; and died in Baltimore, 1816. His most conspicuous public service was rendered in inducing Maryland to ratify the Constitution. Fort McHenry, the bombardment of which in 1814 inspired Francis Scott Key to write the Star-Spangled Banner, was named in McHenry's honor.


Alexander Hamilton is one of those great Americans of whose services to the nation no American can afford to be ignorant. As a soldier in the Revolution, no man possessed more of Washington's confidence. To him as much as to any one man was due the movement that resulted in the formation of the Constitution; he took a leading part in the debates of the Convention; and the ratification of the Constitution was brought about largely by the Federalist, a paper in which he so ably interpreted the provisions of that instrument that it has ever since been regarded as one of the world's political classics. As Secretary of the Treasury under Washington he performed wonders; Daniel Webster said of his work in this office: "He rent the rock of the national resources, and abundant streams of revenue gushed forth. He touched the dead corpse of Public Credit, and it sprung upon its feet." He was born in Nevis, one of the West Indies, in 1757, and was mortally wounded by Aaron Burr in a duel, 1804, at Weehawken, New Jersey.

IV. Organization of Material

Models I and II illustrate two types of biographical notes. That about James McHenry consists of three sentences, which give: (1) A chronological survey of his life; (2) a statement of his chief public service; (3) the fact by which he is most likely to be remembered by the casual reader. It is a good brief form to use in writing about most men and women. Model II is better if the subject is remarkable for many achievements. Its structure is as follows: (1) A keynote sentence; (2), (3), (4) three illustrations of the fact stated in (1); (5) dates. The same principles apply to notices of living people. In writing use one model or the other; do not deviate from them, unless you first find a better model, and can persuade your teacher that it is better.

V. Exercises

1. Reduce some biography which you have read and enjoyed to a biographical note of two hundred words.

2. Write a biographical note of two hundred words about a living person of national reputation.

3. Write a biographical note of two hundred words about a living person of state or city reputation.

4. Write a biographical note about the school janitor, the school engineer, a member of your own family, your hired man, your maid, or any other interesting person from whom you can extract the desired information.

VI. Suggested Reading

Carl Schurz's Life of Abraham Lincoln.

VII. Memorize


All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players. They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages. At first the infant, Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms. And then the whining school-boy, with his satchel And shining morning face, creeping like snail Unwillingly to school. And then the lover, Sighing like furnace, with a woful ballad Made to his mistress's eyebrow. Then a soldier, Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard; Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in quarrel, Seeking the bubble reputation Even in the cannon's mouth. And then the justice, In fair round belly with good capon lined, With eyes severe and beard of formal cut, Full of wise saws and modern instances; And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts Into the lean and slippered pantaloon, With spectacles on nose and pouch on side; His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice, Turning again toward childish treble, pipes And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all, That ends this strange eventful history, Is second childishness and mere oblivion, Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything. SHAKESPEARE, As You Like It, Act II, Scene 7.



"The truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth."

I. Assignment

Report an accident which you have seen. The object of this exercise and those which are to follow is threefold:

1. Vocational—to begin to teach the art of reporting, and hence perhaps lay a foundation for students' earning a living.

2. Ethical—to show all the pupils how a report should be made and thus give them a standard by which to measure newspapers.

3. Artistic—to teach all how to write modern English clearly, simply, and correctly.

II. Model

This is a report of an accident on a city street, witnessed by a reporter, and telephoned to a colleague at the newspaper office.

With a crash that could be heard for blocks, a high-powered touring car, owned and driven by Mrs. William J. Sheldon, wife of the millionaire gum manufacturer, who lives at East Boulevard and Clifton Drive, collided late last night with a heavy milk wagon at Payne Avenue and East 30th St. Both Mrs. Sheldon and John Goldrick, 656 East 105th St., driver of the milk wagon, escaped injury, except for a few minor cuts and bruises.

Mrs. Sheldon was driving east on Payne Avenue on the way to the Pennsylvania Station at Euclid Avenue to meet her husband, who was coming from New York. The street at Payne Avenue and East 30th St. had just been flushed; and, when Mrs. Sheldon endeavored to turn out toward the car tracks to avoid hitting Goldrick's wagon, which was just turning into Payne Avenue, the car skidded and side-swiped the wagon.

One wheel of the machine and the mud guard were torn loose, while glass from the shattered wind-shield rained over Mrs. Sheldon as she strove desperately to twist the wheel. Goldrick was hurled from his seat, landing in the back of the wagon, which was piled high with cases of milk bottles. The horses were thrown from their feet by the shock.

Mrs. Sheldon and Goldrick were extricated from the wreckage and conveyed to the office of Dr. W. A. Masters, Payne Avenue and East 32d St., where their injuries were dressed. Later they were taken to their homes.

III. Suggested Time Schedule

Monday—Dictation of Model and Study of Last Week's Errors. Tuesday—Notes and Queries. Wednesday—Oral Composition—e.g., Telephoning. Thursday—Written Composition. Friday—Public Speaking.

IV. Notes, Queries, and Exercises

1. How many paragraphs are there in the report in Section II?

2. What is the subject of each?

3. The object?

4. Point out the "Four W's."

5. State why each capital and each mark of punctuation in the model is used.

6. Tell whether each sentence is simple, complex, or compound.

7. Find in the model an adverbial phrase, an adverb, a noun used adverbially, a noun in apposition, a clause modifying a verb, a participle modifying the subject of a verb, a non-restrictive clause, and a clause used as an adjective.

8. Point out four words or phrases that give color to the story.

9. Write an appropriate heading for the model.

V. Oral Composition

Prepare a report of some accident which you have yourself seen or which has been described to you by an eye-witness. Be sure to get into the report in the proper order the "Four W's," the cause, and the result. Note that a good story usually consists of three parts:

1. The Previous Situation. 2. What Happened = The Climax. 3. The Result = The Denouement.

These are all in the model, but 2 is put first because it is most important. Observe the order of the model. Each member of the class will have a chance to make his report orally, and it will be subjected to the analysis of the class and teacher, who will blame or praise it according to its deserts. The reporter must defend himself, if attacked. Each pupil will therefore in turn play the role of a reporter, telephoning a story to headquarters while the class and teacher enact the part of the city editor.

VI. Written Composition

After the process outlined in Section IV of this chapter has shown the reporter how to go about the job, the report is to be written, proof-read by the teacher, corrected by the reporter, and rewritten until it is letter-perfect.

VII. Suggested Reading

Kipling's 007 in The Day's Work.

VIII. Memorize


Think every morning when the sun peeps through The dim leaf-latticed windows of the grove How jubilant the happy birds renew Their long melodious madrigals of love; And, when you think of this, remember too 'Tis always morning somewhere, and above The awakening continents from shore to shore Somewhere the birds are singing evermore. LONGFELLOW, The Birds of Killingworth.



"The drying up a single tear has more Of honest fame than shedding seas of gore." LORD BYRON.

I. Introduction

The worst thing about most news articles is that they tell of destruction, failure, and tragedy instead of construction, success, and happiness. If one were to judge from the papers, one would be forced to conclude that the world is rapidly advancing from civilization to barbarism. To test the truth of this assertion, you have only to examine almost any current newspaper. A man may labor honorably and usefully for a generation without being mentioned; but if he does or says a foolish thing, the reporters flock to him as do cats to a plate of cream. The reason is obvious. Tragedy is more exciting than any other form of literature; it contains thrills; it sells papers. However, aside from the fact that the publication of details concerning human folly and misfortune is often cruel and unjust to the sufferers, its influence upon the public is debasing in the same way, if not in the same degree, as public executions were debasing.

Newspaper writing should, therefore, deal with progress rather than with retrogression. Most newspaper men admit that this is true, but declare that the public will not buy the kind of papers which all sensible people approve. Just as soon as such papers can be made to pay, they say, we shall have them. One of the objects of this course is to create a taste for constructive rather than destructive newspapers.

As an exercise tending to produce this result, the student should each day examine the local paper for the purpose of ascertaining how many columns of destruction and how many of construction it contains. The result should be reported to the class and thence to the papers as news.

There are three kinds of items which boys and girls can write and which are constructive. These are:

1. Items dealing with progress. 2. Humorous stories. 3. Items based on contrast.

The work this week will be on the first of these.

II. Models


ST. LOUIS, Feb. 22.—L. C. Phillips will plant 1,000 acres of his southeast Missouri land in sunflowers this year as a further demonstration that this plant can be cultivated with profit on land where other crops may not thrive so well. Phillips has been experimenting for several years in the culture of sunflowers, whose seed, when mixed with other seed, makes excellent chicken and hog feed. Last year he planted nearly 100 acres in sunflowers. The cost of planting and harvesting is about $6 an acre, he says, and the returns from $35 to $48.


HALIFAX, N.S., Dec. 25.—One of the most extraordinary endowments bestowed by nature on any land is enjoyed by the fortunate group of counties round the head of the Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia.

Along the shores of this bay there are great stretches of meadow land covered with rich grass and dotted with barns. These meadows have been brought into existence by the power of the tides in the Bay of Fundy, which have no parallel elsewhere on the globe. There is sometimes a difference of sixty feet between the levels of the water at low and at high tide. The tide sweeps in with a rush, carrying with it a vast amount of solid material scoured out of its channel.

The accumulated deposits of the ages have produced a soil seventy or eighty feet deep. Owing to its peculiarities, this meadow land retains its fertility in a marvelous way, producing heavy crops of hay annually without diminution and without renewal for an indefinite number of years.

When renewal is desired it is only necessary to open a dike, which allows the tide to flood the land again and leave a fresh deposit of soil.


WASHINGTON, Dec. 25.—Michigan holds sixth place among the States in the value of its mineral production, with an output in 1912 valued at $180,062,486, according to the United States Geological Survey, its prominence being due to its great wealth in copper and iron. Ranking second only to Minnesota in the production of iron ore, it is third in the production of copper, being exceeded only by Arizona and Montana. It also stands first in the production of salt, bromine, calcium chloride, graphite, and sand lime brick.

In 1911 Michigan's production of iron ore was 8,945,103 long tons, valued at $23,810,710, and in 1912 it increased to 12,717,468 long tons, valued at $28,003,163.

The production of copper in Michigan, the value of which in the last two years has exceeded that of the output of iron ore, amounted in 1912 to 218,138,408 pounds, valued at $135,992,837, a decrease in quantity, but an increase in value of over $8,000,000.

The mining of copper in Michigan is of prehistoric origin, the metal having been used by the North American Indians before the advent of the white man. The records since 1810, or for a little more than 100 years, show that the total production of copper in Michigan from that date to the close of 1912 has amounted to over 5,200,000,000 pounds, which is about 30 per cent of the total output of the United States.

III. Oral Composition

All three of these items are evidently condensations of longer articles. The writers have boiled down a vast amount of material into the form in which it here appears. The student will find similar material in abundance in The Literary Digest, in The Scientific American, in The National Geographical Magazine, in many government reports, and in almost any daily newspaper. In preparing for this exercise he should observe the following steps:

1. Find his material.

2. Boil it down, to the size desired, which is a most useful exercise of the judgment.

3. Make a careful framework, in doing which the models will be useful.

4. Get the whole so well in mind that he can present it fluently. Hesitation should not be tolerated.

IV. Suggested Time Schedule

Monday—Dictation. Tuesday—Notes and Queries. Wednesday—Oral Composition. Thursday—Written Composition. Friday—Public Speaking.

V. Notes, Queries, and Exercises.

1. Write an appropriate heading for each item.

2. Point out the "Four W's" in each.

3. Tell whether each sentence is simple, compound, or complex.

4. Explain the syntax of the nouns in Model I, the pronouns in II, the verbs in III.

5. Explain the location of St. Louis, Halifax, Nova Scotia, the Bay of Fundy, Washington, Michigan, Minnesota, Arizona, and Montana.

6. Where is the copper country of Michigan? The salt, bromine, calcium, chloride, graphite, and brick regions?

7. Explain the etymological signification of "demonstration," "extraordinary," "accumulated," "Nova Scotia," "annually," "geological," "Arizona," "Montana," "advent."

8. How many words does Model I contain? II? III?

9. Discover and write out the framework of each model.

10. Find one subject on which you could make an item like Model I. Do the same for II and III.

VI. Written Composition

Remember that you are writing for the compositor. Every letter must be right. If you do a good piece of work it is altogether probable that your composition will get into one of the local papers.

VII. Suggested Reading

Mark Twain's Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, Pudd'nhead Wilson, or Roughing It.

VIII. Memorize


A man went down to Panama Where many a man had died To slit the sliding mountains And lift the eternal tide: A man stood up in Panama, And the mountains stood aside.

For a poet wrought in Panama With a continent for his theme, And he wrote with flood and fire To forge a planet's dream, And the derricks rang his dithyrambs And his stanzas roared in steam.

Where old Balboa bent his gaze He leads the liners through, And the Horn that tossed Magellan Bellows a far halloo, For where the navies never sailed Steamed Goethals and his crew;

So nevermore the tropic routes Need poleward warp and veer, But on through the Gates of Goethals The steady keels shall steer, Where the tribes of man are led toward peace By the prophet-engineer. PERCY MACKAYE.[1]

[1] "He [Goethals] received last week three medals—one at Washington, at the hands of President Wilson, from the National Geographical Society; another in New York, at the hands of Dr. John H. Finley, head of the New York State Educational System, from the Civic Forum; and a third, also in New York, at the hands of Hamilton W. Mabie, from the National Institute of Social Sciences. At the presentation of the Civic Forum medal, a poem written for the occasion was read by its author, Mr. Percy MacKaye." (The Outlook. March 14, 1914.) This poem is here quoted, by permission, from Mr. MacKaye's volume, The Present Hour. Published by The Macmillan Company, New York.



"To laugh, if but for an instant only, has never been granted to man before the fortieth day from his birth."—PLINY.

I. Introduction

Laughter, when it hurts nobody, is wholesome. It is the handmaid of happiness. It enriches life. Pleasant but not silly humor and wit are therefore altogether desirable in a paper. Few days in anybody's life are devoid of incidents that tickle the fancy. Material for good humorous stories is abundant everywhere. The faculty of recognizing it when it is seen, and the ability to present it effectively, however, need a little training. To make a beginning in these directions is the object of the exercises that follow.

II. Assignment

Find, but not in a book or a paper, a humorous story, and tell it, first orally, then in writing.

III. Models


Called on to decide the ownership of a hen claimed by George Bass and Joseph Nedrow, of Arnold City, Justice of the Peace John Reisinger hit upon a "Solomonesque" solution. "Take this fowl to Arnold City," he directed his constable, "and release it near the poultry yards of these two men. In whose hen house it goes to roost, to him it belongs." The constable, accompanied by Bass and Nedrow, did as directed. When liberated, the bird promptly flew into the chicken yard of Charles Black, where the constable decided it would have to stay under the justice's ruling. The costs in the case amount to ten times the value of the hen.


James M. I. Galloway, veterinary surgeon of Kirkintilloch, Scotland, arrived yesterday from Glasgow with photographs of a cow with a wooden leg on the starboard quarter, which the veterinary says is almost as good to the cow as an ordinary leg of beef and much more effective in knocking out folks who try to milk her on the wrong side.

Other veterinaries laughed at Galloway, who is young and of an experimental temperament, when he decided to save the life of this cow after the leg had been cut off by a locomotive. He insisted, however, on fitting the wooden leg, which he regards as much more useful than wooden heads on Scotch veterinaries.

The only time the wooden leg gets the cow into trouble is when she stands too long in a damp field and the leg sinks in a foot or so.


The written orders of Mr. J. W. Brooks, a once celebrated American railroad manager of Michigan, were, it is said, almost beyond deciphering. On a certain occasion, when a double track had been laid on one of his roads, it was reported at headquarters that the barn of an old farmer stood partly upon land which the company had bought, and dangerously near to passing trains. Mr. Brooks, who was just getting ready for a trip down the Mississippi, wrote to the farmer that he must move his barn from the company's land at once. If he delayed he would be liable to a suit for damages. The old farmer duly received the letter, and was able to make out the manager's signature, but not another word could he decipher. He took it to the village postmaster, who, equally unable to translate the hieroglyphics, was unwilling to acknowledge it. "Didn't you sell a strip of land to the railroad?" he asked. "Yes." "Well, I guess this is a free pass over the road." And for over a year the farmer used the manager's letter as a pass, not one of the conductors being able to dispute his translation of the instrument.

IV. Notes and Queries

1. A good story always has three parts: (1) A Situation; (2) a Climax; (3) a Solution. Do the models possess these elements? If they do, point them out.

2. Point out the "Four W's" in each.

3. Tell whether each sentence is simple, complex, or compound.

4. Tell why each mark of punctuation is used.

5. Tell why each capital letter is used.

6. Explain the syntax of the adjectives in I, the adverbs in II, the prepositions in III.

7. Explain the etymological signification of the following words: "solution"; "fowl"; "constable"; "photographs"; "veterinary"; "locomotive"; "decipher"; "liable"; "translate"; "hieroglyphics"; "conductors."

8. Find on the map Uniontown, Arnold City, Kirkintilloch, Michigan, and the Mississippi River.

9. Explain the reference in "Solomonesque."

10. What are "costs"?

11. Find a metaphor in II.

V. Suggested Time Schedule

As usual, except that on Friday one number of the program may be a magazine composed of the best stories written during the week by pupils.

VI. Oral Composition

Be sure that your story has a good point; is free from slang; and possesses a beginning, a middle, and an end.

VII. Written Composition

Suggestion: Imagine that the classroom is the local room of a daily paper, the pupils reporters, and the teacher the editor. The stories may be written in class.

VIII. Memorize


The poetry of earth is never dead: When all the birds are faint with the hot sun, And hide in cooling trees, a voice will run From hedge to hedge about the new-mown mead; That is the Grasshopper's;—he takes the lead In summer luxury;—he has never done With his delights, for when tired out with fun He rests at ease beneath some pleasant weed. The poetry of earth is ceasing never: On a lone winter evening, when the frost Has wrought a silence, from the stove there shrills The Cricket's song, in warmth increasing ever, And seems to one in drowsiness half lost The Grasshopper's among some grassy hills. JOHN KEATS.



"Give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness."—ISAIAH.

I. Introduction

Antithesis, or contrast, is one of the two most effective devices at the disposal of any artist, whether he works with words or colors. Its skillful use often enables a newspaper writer to make a good item out of trifling material. The object of this week's work is to teach a little of the art of using antithesis effectively in reportorial work.

II. Models


LONDON, Dec. 25.—Mrs. Rebecca Clarke, who is 109 years of age, presided this morning at the wedding breakfast of her baby son, Harry, who is 67. This is Mr. Clarke's second venture on the matrimonial sea. His two brothers are sprightly bachelors of 70 and 73 years. Mrs. Clarke toasted the newly married couple and ate the first slice of the wedding cake. She attended the Christmas wedding celebration in the evening.


Commuters in Yonkers took advantage of the Christmas holiday to mow their lawns. The grass has been getting longer and longer, owing to the spring weather, until it just had to be cut.

Players on the Dunwoodie Country Club course, also at Yonkers, had to keep moving to keep warm yesterday, but they played on greens which had been mowed only a few days ago, and those who were fond of flowers stopped now and then to pick a buttercup.

The greens keeper at Dunwoodie says that the greens have been mowed four times since the latter part of September, when in ordinary seasons the grass is mowed for the last time until spring. The condition of the course is about the same as in May, according to the greens keeper.

Up in Bronx Park the grass has not been mowed recently, but it is unusually long for the time of year, and so it is in the other city parks. The same condition prevails in the nearby cemeteries. Out in New Jersey a fine crop of grass is in evidence.

Farmers in the vicinity of New York are saving on their usual bills for winter fodder, for with the spring weather and the long grass the animals can pick up a living out of doors.


NEW YORK, Dec. 31.—An order for $2,000,000 worth of shrapnel, to be used in the war in Europe, has been rejected by the Commonwealth Steel Company of Granite City, Ill., it was learned to-day, because Clarence H. Howard, president of the organization, believes warfare should not be recognized.

Mr. Howard, who lives in St. Louis, is known all over the country as the "Golden rule steel man," because he tries to run his plant in accordance with the Golden Rule by sharing profits with the employes.

He is stopping at the Biltmore Hotel. Although he talked freely of the trouble in Europe, he frowned at the report about the $2,000,000 shrapnel order, and then said with blazing eyes:

"Why, our company would not accept an order for $15,000,000 worth of shrapnel! The war itself is a bitter shame. It is something that does not belong in the general scheme of enlightened humanity. If men would only think in unison, and think purely and strongly for the abolition of war, it would stop. There should be a general movement in the United States in this direction.

"When I was a youngster I left my home in Centralia, Ill., to win my own way in the world, and my mother gave me five maxims—one for each finger—which I since have followed with great profit. They are:

"'Seek company among those whom you can trust and association with whom will make you better.

"'Never gamble or go where gambling is done.

"'Never drink or go where drinking is done.

"'As to smoking, it isn't so bad as drinking or gambling, but take my advice and let it alone.

"'When in doubt about where to go, stop and ask if it would be a good place to take your mother.'

"Platitudes, eh! Some might call them that; but they have brought me happiness, and they have brought happiness to others. Not long ago I sat down and figured how much I had saved by not drinking, gambling, or the like. I figured it out at $1,000 a year, and it had been 30 years since my mother gave me the advice."

III. Notes

1. The contrast in Model I consists in the incongruity between the ages of the people and their occupations; in II the contrast is obviously the same as that alluded to in Byron's famous line,

"Seek roses in December, ice in June";

in III Mr. Howard's ideas, ideals, and conduct are in contrast with those of some men.

2. Antithesis between the actual and the normal is always interesting.

IV. Queries and Exercises

1. Explain the syntax of all nouns, adverbs, and infinitives in the models.

2. Find a metaphor in I.

3. Discuss the meaning and etymology of the following words: matrimonial, commuters, Christmas, December, animals.

4. Is "nearby" a better word than "adjacent"?

5. Where is Yonkers?

6. Tell whether the sentences are simple, compound, or complex.

7. What is the subject of each paragraph in II and III?

8. Write double headings for I and II. "Double" means in two parts. For example:

SHAKESPEARE CELEBRATION PLANS ADVANCE President of Drama League Tells of Interest in Tercentenary Observances

Remember that you can use only a fixed number of letters in each line.

9. Define antithesis and metaphor. Find an example of each in to-day's paper.

V. Composition

1. Choosing a Subject. Select an incident that has come within the circle of your own observation; that has never, as far as you know, been described in print; and that is sufficiently unique to present a good contrast to the usual course of events.

2. Collecting Material. Get as many concrete details as possible. Generalities never glitter. They are useful only to cure insomnia.

3. Arranging Material. Look out for the "Four W's." Make a framework that is definite. It should be determined, in the last analysis, not by the model but by the material.

4. Oral Composition. Rehearse your article to your mother or to any other person whom you can induce to listen.

5. Written Composition. "Festina lente." "Hasten slowly." When a French student takes his college entrance examinations, he is plucked if he misspells one word, misplaces one capital letter, or makes a single mistake in punctuation. Lord Bacon somewhere says: "Let us proceed slowly that we may sooner make an end." Sheridan wrote:

"You write with ease to show your breeding, But easy writing's curst hard reading."

Care in No. 5 will eliminate No. 6.

6. Revision and rewriting.

VI. Suggested Reading

Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

VII. Memorize


Let me go where'er I will, I hear a sky-born music still: It sounds from all things old, It sounds from all things young, From all that's fair, from all that's foul, Peals out a cheerful song.

It is not only in the rose, It is not only in the bird, Not only where the rainbow glows, Nor in the song of woman heard, But in the darkest, meanest things There alway, alway something sings.

'Tis not in the high stars alone, Nor in the cup of budding flowers, Nor in the redbreast's mellow tone, Nor in the bow that smiles in showers, But in the mud and scum of things There alway, alway something sings. OLIVER WENDELL HOLMES.

TO TEACHERS. At this point a review of Chapter XII, "Vade Mecum, or Catechism," of Practical English Composition, Book I, will be found an invaluable exercise.



"'Tis strange, but true; for truth is always strange, Stranger than fiction." BYRON.

I. Assignments

1. Relate the most exciting adventure that has occurred to you. Use the third person. Reporters usually are not allowed to use the pronoun "I."

2. Relate the most exciting adventure that has befallen any person whom you personally know well enough to interview on the subject.

3. If you can obtain material in neither of the foregoing ways, get a story from the movies, after the manner suggested in the following dispatch:


Journalism Instructors at Columbia Use Films to Develop Students' Faculty of Observation.

Reporters' "copy" telling in graphic style of the Balkan War poured into the "city room" of the newspaper plant at the Columbia University School of Journalism yesterday. The reason was that moving pictures had been adopted as a means of giving to the students an opportunity to exercise their powers of observation and description in such a fashion as would be required of them in real newspaper work.

The idea of using a moving picture machine to train future newspaper reporters in accuracy of observation was originated by Professor Walter B. Pitkin, and was approved immediately by Dr. Talcott Williams, director of the school. Dr. C. E. Lower, instructor in English, is the official operator, but this work will probably be given later to a student.

4. A last resort is literature. In Stevenson, Poe, or Conan Doyle, you can probably find a story that can be translated into a sufficiently thrilling newspaper dispatch.

II. Models


Colonel Folque, commander of a division of artillery at the front, recently needed a few men for a perilous mission, and called for volunteers. "Those who undertake this mission will perhaps never come back," he said, "and he who commands will be one of the first sons of France to die for his country in this war."

Volunteers were numerous. A young graduate of a polytechnic school asked for the honor of leading those who would undertake the mission. It was the son of Colonel Folque. The latter paled, but did not flinch.

His son did not come back.—Boston Herald.


Villagers in fear of death were scuttling out of little homes like rats driven from holes by flood.

One person in the village remained at her accustomed post and from time to time recorded into the mouth of a telephone receiver the progress of the conflict, while a French general at the other end of the wire listened. Presently her communications were interrupted. "A bomb has just fallen in this office," the girl called to the general. Then conversation ceased.

It is always that way with the telephone girl when tragedy stalks abroad and there is necessity to maintain communication with the outside world. The telephone girl of Etain may be lionized in lyric literature. She deserves it. The telephone girl of Etain may find brief mention in history. She deserves that much at least. And yet the telephone girl at Etain is but one of her kind the world over.—Sioux City Journal.

III. Oral Composition

1. Point out in each story the situation, the climax, and the denouement.

2. Discuss the meaning of "polytechnic," "lionized," "lyric."

3. Discuss the etymology of "volunteers," "mission," "graduate," "telephone," "literature."

4. Describe Etain.

5. Find in the models examples of antithesis, alliteration, and simile.

IV. Written Composition

1. Do not exceed the length of the models.

2. Be sure that your story is in three paragraphs, arranged thus: (1) Situation; (2) Climax; (3) Denouement.

3. Put your story in the form of a news article with a heading. Don't forget the "Four W's."

V. Model

NEW YORK, November 21. The mystery of the disappearance of Mrs. Pauline Edwards on November 18 was cleared up to-day. A party of police visited her home at 96 East Twenty-third St. at 9 A.M. for the purpose of making a final examination of the premises. They found Mr. Allan Edwards, her husband, at home, and compelled him to accompany them on their tour of inspection. Careful scrutiny of all the rooms having failed to reveal any evidence of foul play, they were about to leave the cellar, which they had visited last, when Edwards, who was apparently under the influence of liquor or strong excitement, called their attention in abusive language to the construction of the walls, at the same time rapping heavily with a cane upon the bricks of the foundation of a chimney. His blows were answered by a sound from within the chimney. It seemed at first like the sobbing of a child and then swelled into an indescribable scream, howl, or shriek. The wall was broken down, revealing the bloody corpse of Mrs. Edwards. It stood erect. On its head sat a black cat.

On being arraigned before Police Justice O'Toole, Edwards confessed his guilt and told the story of his life. He comes from an excellent family, is a graduate of the University of Utopia, and had a thriving business until, several years ago, he became addicted to drink. During the summer of 1913, in a drunken frenzy, he gouged out one eye of a cat named Pluto, who had formerly been one of his pets. More recently he had destroyed this animal by hanging it with a clothes line in his yard. Remorse for this cruel deed caused him about two months ago to domesticate another cat, which was exactly like the first except that, whereas the first was entirely black, the second had on its breast a white spot, shaped like a gallows.

This circumstance, the fact that the animal had only one eye, and his own nervous condition soon made Edwards loathe and fear the new cat. On the morning of November 17, he and Mrs. Edwards went to the cellar to inspect their supply of coal. The cat followed them down the steep stairs and nearly overthrew Edwards, who thereupon seized an axe and would have slain it, had not Mrs. Edwards interposed. In his fury at being thwarted, he buried the axe in her skull. As the cellar had been newly plastered, he had no difficulty in removing some bricks from the chimney, in concealing the remains in its interior, and in repairing the wall in such a way that it did not differ in appearance from the rest of the cellar.

Dr. Felix Leo, Professor of Zooelogy at Columbia, on having these facts told him this morning, said he thought it unlikely that Cat Number Two was the same individual as Cat Number One, though the story of Androcles and the lion, if true, would indicate that animals of the feline species sometimes remember and reciprocate a kindness. "Why, then," said the doctor, solemnly closing one eye, "may we not suppose that a cat would have the will and the intelligence to revenge an injury?"

The theory of Edwards, who is now confined in a padded cell in the Tombs, is different. He maintains that the two cats are one and the same, and that the body of the beast is occupied by that ubiquitous spirit who is variously known as Satan, Hornie, Cloots, Mephistopheles, Pluto, and Old Nick.

VI. Analysis of Model

This story is simply a translation into newspaper English of Edgar Allen Poe's story entitled The Black Cat. Its three parts are as follows:

1. Situation. A man is converted by drink into such a beast that he first tortures and kills a pet and afterwards in his frenzy murders his wife, concealing her body in a chimney.

2. Climax. His crime is revealed by the wail of the cat, which he had supposed dead but had walled up with the corpse.

3. Denouement. He is to be executed.

Poe puts the denouement first, the situation second, and the climax last, which is a common and effective method in tales of horror and mystery. The newspaper method is to put the climax first, the denouement second, and the situation last. This arrangement, which is as old as Homer's Odyssey, is thus alluded to by Byron:

"Most epic poets plunge in medias res, (Horace makes this the heroic turnpike road), And then your hero tells, whene'er you please, What went before—by way of episode."

For newspaper purposes this method is desirable because it makes a good lead. That is, the first paragraph, and if possible the first sentence, tells the biggest fact about the case. Readers' attention being thus caught and economized, they get the habit of buying papers.

VII. Assignments

1. Write headlines for the models in this chapter.

2. Rewrite the Models in Section II on the plan of that in Section V.

3. Rewrite on the same plan one of Poe's other detective stories, one of Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes tales, Stevenson's Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde or The Wrecker, one of Cooper's novels, or any other thrilling story.

VIII. Cautions

1. Be sure that you have your three situations in the right order.

2. Be exceedingly particular about the Four W's. Make them stand out vividly in each situation.

3. Use the shortest words that will convey your meaning.

4. Use adjectives and adverbs sparingly. How many does the model contain?

IX. Suggested Reading

Jules Verne's Mysterious Island; Robert Browning's Herve Riel; Tennyson's Revenge; Whittier's Barbara Frietchie; Samuel Rogers's Ginevra.

X. Memorize


The mountain sheep are sweeter, But the valley sheep are fatter; We therefore deemed it meeter To carry off the latter. We made an expedition; We met an host and quelled it; We forced a strong position, And killed the men who held it.

On Dyfed's richest valley, Where herds of kine were browsing, We made a mighty sally, To furnish our carousing. Fierce warriors rushed to meet us; We met them, and o'erthrew them: They struggled hard to beat us, But we conquered them, and slew them.

As we drove our prize at leisure, The king marched forth to catch us: His rage surpassed all measure, But his people could not match us. He fled to his hall-pillars; And, ere our force we led off, Some sacked his house and cellars, While others cut his head off.

We there, in strife bewildering, Spilt blood enough to swim in: We orphaned many children, And widowed many women. The eagles and the ravens We glutted with our foemen; The heroes and the cravens, The spearmen and the bowmen.

We brought away from battle, And much their land bemoaned them, Two thousand head of cattle, And the head of him who owned them: Ednyfed, King of Dyfed, His head was borne before us; His wine and beasts supplied our feasts, And his overthrow, our chorus. THOMAS LOVE PEACOCK.



"A good book is the precious life blood of a master spirit." JOHN MILTON.

I. Assignments

1. Write a review of a book of travels. 2. Write a review of a biography. 3. Write a review of a novel.

II. Models


FRASER, JOHN FOSTER. The Amazing Argentine. Pp. 291, illustrated. New York: Funk & Wagnalls Company. $1.50 net.

This volume should go far to dissipate any idea that there is not much of any consequence south of the Rio Grande besides the Panama Canal. In the story of his journeyings over the length and breadth of this enormous country—twice the size of Mexico—Mr. Fraser paints us a picture of a progressive people, and a country that is rapidly assuming a position as the foremost producer of the world's meat-supply. Stretching from the Atlantic to the Andes Mountains and from north of the Tropic of Capricorn to the Straits of Magellan, it supports 30,000,000 cattle, over 80,000,000 sheep, and 8,000,000 horses. The railroads, in which the British have invested L300,000,000, are among the best equipped in the world, and carry annually 40,000,000 tons of freight, with approximate receipts of L25,000,000. The export trade is advancing by leaps and bounds, and in 1912 the value of wool exports was L50,000,000, live-stock products L35,000,000, and agricultural produce L53,000,000; while the extent of the frozen-meat business may be gaged from the fact that L11,000,000 is invested in freezing-houses. The book is a distinct help to Americans in showing them a little more of the great country that is opening up to their enterprise.—The Literary Digest, October 17, 1914.[2]

[2] Reprinted by permission of Funk & Wagnalls Company.


LE SUEUR GORDON. Cecil Rhodes. 8vo, pp. 345. New York: McBride, Nast & Co. $3.50.

Cecil Rhodes must be looked upon as the Clive of South Africa. He found that country a land of wilderness and savagery. He transformed it into a fair and industrious province. He possessed the unscrupulous and relentless spirit of such conquerors as Julius Caesar, and he was at the same time a financier of the widest resource. But some nefarious or alleged nefarious transactions which stained his name as a business man and a politician deprived him of royal recognition. He was not only denied a title, but even failed to obtain a decoration, and it was not until his death that a magnificent monument was unveiled to his memory in the heart of Rhodesia, a province which he had created and which was named after him.

Cecil John Rhodes (1853-1902) was born, like so many eminent Englishmen, in the house of a clergyman. Into the forty-nine years of his life he compressed a very stirring chapter of British victory. There was something of the buccaneer in his character when he prompted the notorious Jameson Raid and eventually brought the British Government into conflict with the cunning and ambition of Kruger—Oom Paul, as he was styled. For the bitter and bloody Boer War the blame has always been laid upon the shoulders of Rhodes.

Rhodes was an Oxford man and an omnivorous reader. He began by working in the diamond-mines at Kimberley as a common laborer; he ended by becoming manager of the Chartered Company, and amassing a vast fortune.—The Literary Digest, April, 1914.[3]

[3] Ibid.


Sense and Sensibility. A Novel. By Jane Austen. London: Egerton. 1811.

Though inferior to Pride and Prejudice, this work is about as well worth reading as any novel which, previous to its publication, had been written in the English language. Its interest depends, not on its descriptive and narrative power, but on character portrayal and humor.

Though both lovable girls, the two heroines, Elinor and Marianne, are as imperfect and as different as sisters are apt to be in real life. Vulgar match-making Mrs. Jennings, as Austin Dobson calls her, like many a flesh-and-blood dowager, at first repels us by her foolish prattle and finally wins our respect by her kindness. Sir John Middleton, with his horror of being alone; Lady Middleton, with her horror of impropriety; Miss Steele, who can always be made happy by being teased about the Doctor; Lucy Steele, pretty, clever, not over-fastidious in her principles, and abominably weak in her grammar; Robert Ferrars, whose airs are justly punished by his marriage to Lucy; Mrs. Ferrars, who contrives to be uniformly unamiable; Mrs. John Dashwood, fit daughter to such a mother; and Mr. John Dashwood, fit husband to such a wife—together form a gallery of portraits of which any author might be proud.

The book, too, is rich in humor. Among other delightful things we read of a will which, like almost every other will, gave as much disappointment as pleasure; of a child of three who possesses the usual charms of that age, an imperfect articulation, an earnest desire of having his own way, many cunning tricks, and a great deal of noise; of apricot marmalade applied successfully as a remedy for a bruised temple; of a company who met to eat, drink, and laugh together, to play at cards or consequences, or any other game that was sufficiently noisy; of a husband who is always making remarks which his wife considers so droll but cannot remember; of Constantia wine, which is equally good for colicky gout and broken hearts; of a face of strong natural sterling insignificance; of a girl who was pleased that a man had called and still more pleased that she had missed him; of a woman of few words, for, unlike people in general, she proportioned them to the number of her ideas; of a newspaper item that interested nobody except those who knew its contents before; and of a man who was perfectly the gentleman in his behavior to guests and only occasionally rude to his wife and mother-in-law.

It is true that the two heroes are not very heroic, Edward Ferrars being only a curate and Col. Brandon a poor old man of 36 with a flannel waistcoat; but the latter is pretty thoroughly the gentleman and the former gives up a fortune of 30,000 pounds in order to marry a girl whom he does not love, thereby furnishing, if not an example of good sense, at least an agreeable contrast to Marianne's lover, Willoughby, who marries a girl whom he does not love in order to get the money which he is too genteel to earn.

On the whole, it is a wonderful book to have been written by a girl of twenty-one.[4]

[4] Reprinted, by permission of The Macmillan Company, from the introduction of Sense and Sensibility, edited by Edwin L. Miller.

III. Notes, Queries, and Exercises

1. Among the important functions of a newspaper is the task of announcing the appearance of new books, describing their contents, and commenting on their merits. The style of such notices should, above everything else, be clear. Most of them are unfortunately disfigured by a jargon which repels readers instead of inducing them to peruse the books reviewed.

2. What information should the heading of a book notice furnish?

3. Model I is an excellent example of what a review in a single paragraph should be. The first sentence bridges the intellectual and geographical space between the United States and Argentina, between the reader and the subject, which is just what an introduction should do. The second sentence describes the country in general terms, ending in a clause that leads directly to the most striking single fact about Argentina, its importance as an agricultural country. The three sentences that follow give concrete facts in support of this clause. The final sentence drives home the point stated in the first.

4. Discuss the meaning and etymology of "dissipate," "Rio Grande," "annually," "approximate," "exports," "enterprise."

5. Point out one restrictive and one non-restrictive clause.

6. Describe orally the location and character of the Rio Grande, Mexico, the Panama Canal, the Atlantic, the Andes, the Tropic of Capricorn, the British, and the Straits of Magellan.

7. What figure of speech have we in the phrase, "the Amazing Argentine?"

8. In Model II we have an illustration of a biographical review in three paragraphs. It presents a vivid picture of Cecil Rhodes in spite of the fact that it is not well organized. Try the experiment of rewriting it according to this plan: Par. I—Introduction, or Bridge; Par. II—Rhodes's Services to Mankind; Par. III—Rhodes's Faults; Par. IV—Rhodes's Private Life.

9. Find in the model an example of alliteration and an example of antithesis.

10. Explain the allusions in "Clive," "Julius Caesar," "buccaneer," "Jameson Raid," "Kruger," "Boer War," and "Oxford."

11. Define "financier," "nefarious," "politician," "notorious," "ambition," and "omnivorous." From what language do these words come?

12. Analyze Model III as I and II have already been analyzed for you.

13. Find in III an antithesis and an alliteration.

14. Which of the books do you wish most to read? Why?

15. Do these models observe the law of presenting concrete rather than abstract statements?

16. Make a list of the books you have read, putting in one column the books of travel, into another the biographies, and into a third the novels.

17. Choose one of these as the subject of a review which you are to write.

IV. Oral Composition

In preparing for this observe the following points:

(a) Remember that your main purpose is to persuade others to read the book.

(b) In your first paragraph make a bridge from the minds of your audience to the book.

(c) In the body of your review describe concretely the one most interesting feature of the work.

(d) In your last paragraph restate the idea of the first but do it in some other form.

V. Written Composition

Concentrate your attention on perfection of sentence structure.

VI. Suggested Time Schedule

Week I Week II

Monday —Dictation Oral Composition. Tuesday —Dictation. Oral Composition. Wednesday—Notes, Queries, Exercises. Written Composition. Thursday —Notes, Queries, Exercises. Revision. Friday —Speaking. Program.

VII. Suggested Reading

1. Macaulay's Frederic the Great, Clive, and Hastings. 2. Mark Twain's Roughing It. 3. Scott's Ivanhoe.

VIII. Memorize


The folk who lived in Shakespeare's day And saw that gentle figure pass By London Bridge, his frequent way— They little knew what man he was.

The pointed beard, the courteous mien, The equal port to high and low, All this they saw or might have seen— But not the light behind the brow!

The doublet's modest gray or brown, The slender sword-hilt's plain device, What sign had these for prince or clown? Few turned, or none, to scan him twice.

Yet 'twas the king of England's kings! The rest with all their pomps and trains Are mouldered, half-remembered things— 'Tis he alone that lives and reigns! THOMAS BAILEY ALDRICH.



"It is not strength but art obtains the prize, And to be swift is less than to be wise." Iliad.

I. Assignment

If it is fall, report a football game; if winter, a basket-ball game; if spring or summer, a baseball game.

II. Material

In order to be able to report a football game, one must understand the rules of the game, be familiar with the personnel and history of the opposing teams, and know the names of the officials. The task therefore resolves itself into three parts:

1. Learning the rules of the game. 2. Studying the teams and officials. 3. Attending the game and taking notes.

Those members of the class who are familiar with the rules may be assigned the task of explaining them to the others; this is an excellent exercise in oral composition. It should include: (1) A short history of football; (2) A description of the field; (3) a description of the equipment of a team; (4) an account of the organization of a team; (5) a description of the way a game is played; (6) an explanation of the rules. Spalding's Football Guide contains all of the information necessary, though it may be supplemented by encyclopaedias. It is suggested that this exercise be organized for presentation as a program.

The study of the opposing teams may be managed in the same way. It should include: (1) Their past history; (2) their personnel; (3) some account of the officials and their qualifications.

Quick and accurate observation of what happens during a game is essential. A good scheme for recording everything as it occurs is to make a chart of the field in a notebook, and, as the game progresses, to mark on it the progress of the ball, using a blue pencil when it is in the possession of one side and a red pencil when the other has it. On this chart brief notes of the methods by which the ball is advanced may also be made.

III. Composition

Football reports vary in length from a bare statement of the result of a game to many columns, the determining factor in this particular being the amount of public interest. The style is sometimes rendered picturesque by a skillful use of metaphor, antithesis, and slang, but more often is severely plain. The latter method is the only safe one for beginners. Except in the hands of a genius, the former is sure to result in silly vulgarity. The models which follow are of convenient length and in style are admirable, being clear, correct, and free from vulgarity.

IV. Models


MICHIGAN, 15; M.A.C., 3

Michigan defeated the Michigan Agricultural College at Lansing on Saturday, Oct. 14, in a game which marked the first defeat of the Aggies on their home field. The Wolverines went into the late minutes of the third quarter without a score and with 3 points against them, and, by the kind of football that has made Yost teams famous, played the "farmers" to a standstill. Michigan was returned a winner by a score of 15 to 3. The game brought out Jimmie Craig in the new role of halfback and assured him a permanent berth behind the line. Six hundred Michigan rooters attended the game.

The summary:

Michigan, 15 Position M.A.C., 3

Garrels L.E. {Stone (Capt.) {Davis

Conklin (Capt.) L.T. {Bekeman {Day

Bogle L.G. McLaughty

Paterson C. McWilliams

Allmendinger} R.G. {Culver Quinn } {Martin

Pontius R.T. Gifford

Wells R.E. Gorenflo

Craig } Q. Riblet McMillan}

Torbet } Herrington} L.H. Hill Craig }

Carpell R.H. Markem

Thomson F.B. {Bullard {Julian

Officials—Referee, Hackett, West Point; Umpire, Eckersall, Chicago; Field Judge, Allen, Northwestern; Head Linesman, Yeckley, Penn. State. Time of Periods—10 minutes.



Michigan's defeat of O.S.U. on Ferry Field Saturday, October 21, was due largely to the superior endurance of the Wolverine team. State outplayed Michigan in the first quarter of the game, but Michigan soon settled to the task and rolled up 19 points against no score for the visitors. Foss, the Ohio quarterback, was the individual star of the game.

The summary:

Michigan, 19 Position O.S.U., 0

Conklin (Capt.) L.E. {Trautman {McCoy

Bogle } L.T. Barriklow Roblee}

Bogle} L.G. Raymond Quinn}

Paterson C. Geib

Allmendinger} R.G. Geisman Garrels }

Pontius R.T. Markley (Capt.)

Wells R.E. {Pavey {Stover

McMillan} Q. Foss Pickard }

Craig L.H. Smith, L.J.

Carpell} R.H. Cox Huebel }

Thomson F.B. {Wright {Willaman

Officials—Referee, Thompson, Georgetown; Umpire, Hoagland, Princeton; Field Judge, Lieut. Nelly, West Point; Head Linesman, Macklin, Penn. Time of periods—15 minutes.



Michigan was played to a standstill in the game with McGugin's Vanderbilt eleven on Ferry Field Saturday, Oct. 28, and it was by the closest of margins that the Wolverines won out by a 9 to 8 score. A field goal was scored by each team and each team made a touchdown, but Michigan was more fortunate than her southern rivals in that McMillan made a perfect punt-out and Conklin kicked goal, while Captain Roy Morrison of Vanderbilt fell down on the same play and lost his team the chance to try for a goal from touchdown when he overkicked on the punt-out. Yost was far from satisfied by the showing of the Michigan team.

The summary:

Michigan, 9 Position Vanderbilt, 8

Conklin (Capt.) L.E. K. Morrison

Bogle L.T. {Freeland {Covington

Quinn L.G. Metzger

Paterson C. Morgan

Garrels R.G. C. Brown

Pontius R.T. T. Brown

Wells R.E. E. Brown

McMillan Q. R. Morrison (Capt.)

Craig L.H. Hardage

Carpel R.H. {Collins {Curlin

Thomson F.B. Sikes

Officials—Referee, Bradley Walker, Virginia; Umpire, Eckersall, Chicago; Field Judge, Lieut. Nelly, West Point; Head Linesman, Heston, Michigan.

G. E. ELDERIDGE. Michigan Alumnus, November, 1911.

V. Queries and Topics for Oral Composition

1. What knowledge is necessary in order to report a football game?

2. How old is the game of football?

3. Wherein do Rugby, soccer, Canadian, and American football differ?

4. Describe the field on which American football is played.

5. Describe the shoes, costumes, headgear, and ball used in the game.

6. What is a stadium?

7. Describe the functions of each player on a team.

8. Explain the following terms: "kickoff," "tackling," "end run," "line buck," "interference," "blocking," "holding," "off side," "punt," "drop kick," "forward pass," "fair catch," "downs," "scrimmage," "touchdown," "touchback," "safety," "goal from touchdown," and "goal from field."

9. How many yards must a team carry the ball in four downs in order to keep it?

10. How much does a touchdown count? A safety? A field goal? A goal from touchdown?

11. How would you go to work to find out the past history of a team and the character of its personnel?

12. What method of taking notes is recommended?

13. How long should the report of a game be?

14. In what style should it be written?

15. How many words does each model contain?

16. Observe how the writer seizes on the one or two salient points of each game, omitting what is unessential. This requires judgment and the effort to do it is a good training in judgment.

17. Tell whether each sentence is simple, complex, or compound.

18. Explain why each mark of punctuation is used.

19. Find a metaphor in the models.

VI. Exercise

Write a report of Saturday's game.

VII. Suggested Time Schedule

Week I Week II

Monday—(a) Review past errors. Queries. (b) Assign work on Sections II and III of this chapter. Tuesday—Program on Section II. Queries. Wednesday—Program on Section III. Oral Composition Thursday—Dictation of Models. Written Composition and Reviews. Friday—Dictation of Models. Public Speaking.

VIII. Suggested Reading

Thomas Hughes's Tom Brown at Rugby; Homer's Iliad, Book XXIII; Virgil's AEneid, Book V.

IX. Model II.

NEW YORK, October 9, 1913.—Cornelius McGillicuddy's Murder Association, incorporated, convened at the Polo grounds this afternoon, transacted routine business, and adjourned.

On motion of Brother Edward Collins, supported by Brother J. Franklin Baker, and carried by acclamation, it was voted to resume the task of tearing the hide off the Giants. Messrs. Collins and Baker were appointed a special committee of two to carry out the work and seven others were assigned to assist them.

After the meeting refreshments consisting of singles, doubles, triples, and home runs were served; and a good time was had by all, excepting John J. McGraw and his employes and friends numbering upward of 25,000. The latter class was unanimous in declaring the Mackmen a bunch of vulgar, common persons who play professional baseball for a living and thus are not entitled to associate with amateurs, such as some of the New York players.

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