“The language of our country is certainly more interesting to us than any other. To be able to speak and write it correctly is of great utility in every station of life; especially in a free government, where men of every class ought to be capable of executing those public offices in which their fellow …Continue reading "Introduction"
William Lily’s Short Introduction of Grammar, the most important grammar textbook in the history of England, had considerable influence on many subsequent grammars, including that of Ezekiel Cheever, who taught Latin in Boston, Massachusetts for seventy years. The manuscript textbook that he developed during this period was put into print after his death, with the …Continue reading "English Heritage"
Many of the grammar textbooks published in the late 18th century in the wake of the Revolutionary War are proudly and assertively American. In A Concise Grammar of the English Language, Alexander Miller argues for the importance of English grammar to a free society in which any citizen may hold public office. Alexander Miller. …Continue reading "Grammar for Democracy"
As the 19th century continued, grammar textbooks began to emphasize the practical teaching of composition, in addition to the formal structures of grammar. Goold Brown’s The Institutes of English Grammar includes many pages of “Exercises” with which students may practice the skills that they have learned. Goold Brown. The Institutes of English Grammar. New York: …Continue reading "Composition"
In the 19th century it became much more common for writers to try to make the subject of grammar more appealing to young children. A new level of imagination and playfulness can be found in S. W. Clark’s Easy Lessons in English, which includes an address from the Queen of Good English, explaining the benefits …Continue reading "Grammar for Children"
A successful lawyer, Lindley Murray was also among the most important and influential grammarians in American history. He wrote his English Grammar in 1795 and the book became massively popular among educators in America and in England. Murray also produced several supplementary texts to accompany this work, including books of exercises, and also his English …Continue reading "Lindley Murray"
In Higher Lessons in English Alonzo Reed and Brainerd Kellogg introduce the highly influential technique of sentence diagramming: a way of visualizing the logical relationships within a grammatical structure, which remains popular today. Alonzo Reed and Brainerd Kellogg. Higher Lessons in English. New York: Effingham Maynard & Co., 1892. Fred Newton Scott and …Continue reading "New Techniques"
S. Barton’s Easy Lessons in English Grammar, for Young Beginners and A New System of English Grammar were both published in Alabama, and their contents are designed to appeal to residents, including state-specific references in their grammatical examples. S. Barton. A New System of English Grammar. Montgomery: Teachers’ Exchange, 1855. S. Barton. …Continue reading "Bama Grammar"
This exhibit was curated by Dr. Russ McConnell, instructor in the Department of English at the University of Alabama. It would not have been possible without the help of Dr. Amy Chen of the W. S. Hoole Special Collections Library and of Dr. Emma Annette Wilson and Muzel Chen of the Alabama Digital Humanities Center.Continue reading "About"