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To the SCHOOL MASTERS of
Great Britain and Ireland.
HE great demand for, and speedy
sale of the four last impressions of this small Treatise, naturally leads me to think,
you have encouraged the undertaking
Permit me, therefore, in this fifth edition, to return you hearty thanks for your friendly and undeserved favours.
I am very sensible, (as I told you before) that many abler hands have undertaken this task before me, and have, in large vo. lumes, done that which cannot be ex. pected to be found here : But as you are sensible too many of them have spent their time, rather upon curiosities than business, (the very thing that every scho
made it my
lar should particularly drive at, and whichi
, I am sensible, every one of you would promote the knowledge of) I have here
chief care to inform the learner of every thing that is necessary thereto, It was not without reluctance that I
this subject; but having published a small treatise of Fractions and Algebra, by way of dialogue, in 1750,* which has met with great encouragement. I was persuaded by several Schoolmasters, and private Gentlemen, to publith also a piece of Arithmetic, after the same manner; as they were sensible, they said, (and indeed, I confefs, I think the faine) that this way of writing conveys the matter better, and communicates things sooner to the learner, than the bare setting of sums, and not working them at all, or, in a dry, intricate manner.
As I do not pretend to recommend the work, by comparing it with other Authors; fo, I hope, you will not condemn it, till you
have perused it throughout. * The third Edition, with some Quadratic Problems, was published in 1759.
'Tis true, that the last method of reducing Cs. qrs. lbs. into lbs. (in the first Example of Tare and Tret) is well worthy your observations, it being as easy as it is new ; and several persons in business, to whom I have communicated it, never pretend to use any other way for ease and expedition.
To such of you, indeed, as are perfect masters of the sciences, this little piece may appear insignificant; but to others, I am sensible, the dialogues will be of great service, as they are intermixed with a variety of familiar Examples, in natural conversation : and I persuade myself, they will be of great help to your pupils, and, in a great ineasure, ease you of that heavy task, which every dirigent master (with a number of scholars) must of necessity labour under.
This, Gentlemen, is one reason (as I faid) why I built it upon this plan; and I hope, for the design's fake, you will forgive those errors that have yet escaped my notice, and which you know are so common to a work of this fort; tho' I have A 3
taken care to correct all such, as I have at present discovered in former editions.
I have made no great alteration in the work, only have taken off part of the Double Rule of Three Direct and Inverse (as you know the Rule of Five Numbers will supply that defect) in order to make more room (by the desire of several Merchants) for a fuller and more clear explanation, both of the true and customary way of Discount.
To my thanks, I add my best wishes for your fuccess, jointly and separately, in your several undertakings; and desire always to subscribe myself,
G EN T L E M E N,
Your most obliged humble Servant,
Royal Exchange Afurance Office,
London, April 10, 1765.
T H E