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قراءة كتاب A Brief Account of the Educational Publishing Business in the United States

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‏اللغة: English
A Brief Account of the Educational Publishing Business in the United States

A Brief Account of the Educational Publishing Business in the United States

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دار النشر: Project Gutenberg
الصفحة رقم: 4

stories in alphabetical order, each followed by a religious, moral, or historical observation. The poor youngsters who were forced to read, day after day, from the pages of these early books, whose text matter was certainly lugubrious and distressing, were constantly reminded of death, the grave, a wrathful God, and a burning hell prepared for the wicked.

The text matter of the early Arithmetics, while not as gruesome as that of the Readers, was in many respects so peculiar as to be quite beyond the understanding of the twentieth century teacher. Allow me to call your attention to two or three of the puzzling things contained in “Old Pike,” as his Arithmetic was commonly known.

When tare and tret and doff are allowed:

Deduct the tare and tret, and divide the suttle by 168, and the quotient will be the cloff, which subtract from the suttle, and the remainder will be the neat.

These definitions will help you to understand the old terms:

Tare is an allowance, made to the buyer, for the weight of the box, barrel, or bag which contains, the goods bought.

Tret is an allowance of 4 lbs. in every 104 lbs. for waste, dust, etc.

Cloff is an allowance of 2 lbs. upon every 3 cwt.

Suttle is, when part of the allowance is deducted.

Neat weight is what remains after all allowances are made.

The following rule is another of Pike’s puzzles. This tells how to find the Gregorian Epact:

Subtract 11 from the Julian Epact. If the subtraction cannot be made, add 30 to the Julian Epact, then subtract, and the remainder will be the Gregorian Epact. If nothing remains, the Epact is 29.

You doubtless remember that an epact is the excess of the solar year over the twelve lunar months, or about eleven days.

In Walsh’s Mercantile Arithmetic, published in 1807, there is an example that certainly would not have pleased Neal Dow. This is the problem:

If 8 boarders drink a barrel of cider in 12 days, how long would it last if 4 more came among them?

I quote another problem that must surely have sent the distracted teacher to her dictionary for first aid to the tormented:

How much will 189 bazar maunds (a maund = 82.14 lbs.) 31 seer (a seer = 2.06 lbs.) 8 chattacks (a chattack = 1/16 of a seer, or 2 oz.) of sugar come to, at 6 rupees per maund?

One arithmetic maker, Jacob Willetts, of Poughkeepsie, set many of his problems in rhyme; for instance,

When first the marriage knot was ty’d
Between my wife and me,
My age was to that of my bride,
As three times three to three.
But now when ten, and half ten years
We man and wife have been,
Her age to mine exactly bears,
As eight is to sixteen;
Now tell, I pray, from what I’ve said,
What were our ages when we wed?
Ans.—Thy age, when marry’d, must have been
Just forty-five; thy wife’s fifteen.

Dillworth’s Schoolmaster’s Assistant, first published in London in 1774 and reprinted in Philadelphia in 1769, and considerably used in the colonies, contains two examples which the author called “Pleasant and Diverting Questions.” The first is as follows:

A farmer with a fox, a goose and a bag of corn has to cross a river in a boat so small that he can take only two of these three burdens