Advanced Readers 287
Len, you must be chained in a dark room and fed on bread and water— O the Mackademy !
Leander. You may arraign me, Sir, with impunity for faults which I in some instances have been guilty of— but my improvements in the liberal arts and sciences, have been, I believe, equal to most of my standing, and I am confident, Sir, that I have asserted nothing but what is consistent with the philosophy of our times.
Old T. Your dosolophys may go to Beelzebub, and you may go with them, Sir, and be hang'd, Sir — O the Conceptor, and Mackademy may go to Beelzebub and be hang'd and they will! Come home, Len, you sha'nt go there any more, you'll be ruin'd and undone for ever, and for 'tarnally !
A reader with a special purpose was The Mental Flower Garden, or an Instructive and Entertaining Companion for the Fair Sex, New York, 1808. It was full of sugar-coated wisdom and mild sentiment as was befitting in a text-book for " female youth," and no effort was spared to use highly polished and becoming language on all occasions. Its tone was very like that it recommended for " epistolary writing — easy, genteel and obliging, with a choice of words which bear the most civil meaning, and a generous and good-natured complaisance."
Scott's and Lindley Murray's readers were the only ones by English compilers to be widely circulated in this country. Murray's several readers continued in use until the middle of the nineteenth century. They were stupid-looking, fine-print volumes, full of profundity and never lapsed into the shallow amateurishness of some of our American