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HOW TO TURN ENGLISH INTO GOOD FRENCH.

FRENCH COMPOSITION:

;

COMPREHENDING

I. ENGLISH PROSE SPECIMENS,

TO BE TRANSLATED INTO FRENCH, WITH THE ASSISTANCE OF NOTES

ON THE IDIOMS AND PECULIARITIES OF BOTH LANGUAGES.

II. OUTLINES OF NARRATIVES,
LETTERS FROM STANDARD WRITERS,
WITH NUMEROUS EXERCISES IN COMPOSITION.

BY

ALFRED HAVET,

DIRECTOR OF THE SCOTTISH INSTITUTION, EDINBURGH;

Author of French Studies," "The French Class-Book," &c.

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LOPON:

W. ALLAN & CO.; SIMPKIN & CO.; HACHETTE & CO.; DULAU & CO.

EDINBURGH: J. MENZIES & CO.; SETON & MACKENZIE.
GLASGOW: DAVID BRYCE AND CO , 129 BUCHANAN STREET.
DUBLIN: M'GLASHAN AND GILL, 50 UPPER SACKVILLE STREET.

PARIS: HACHETTE & CO., 77 BOULEVARD SAINT-GERMAIN.

303. f. 30.

Used in Colleges and Schools throughout Great Britain, Ireland,

the English Colonies, and the United States of America.

THE FRENCH CLASS-BOOK; PART I, containing

Reader, Conversations, Grammar, French and English Exercises, Dictionary, &c. (The only work required in Elementary

Classes.) 330 crown 8vo pages. THE FRENCH CLASS-BOOK ; PART II., containing

the Syntax and Peculiarities of the French Language, with numerous English and French Exercises. 180 crown 8vo

pages. THE COMPLETE FRENCH CLASS-BOOK; or, Gram

mar of French Grammars. Eighth Edition, in one volume.

500 8vo pages.

LE LIVRE DU MAÎTRE ; or, Key to both Parts of

“The French Class-Book," with numerous Notes and useful Hints.

FRENCH STUDIES: Modern Conversations upon the

ordinary topics of life, Colloquial Exercises, Extracts from Standard Writers, a Dictionary, &c. 6th Edition, 400 8vo

pages. HOUSEHOLD FRENCH; A Conversational Introduc

tion to the French Language. 5th Edition. 300 8vo pages. FRENCH COMPOSITION; comprehending, I. Prose

Specimens from British and American Authors, to be Translated into French. II. Outlines of Narratives, Letters, &c.

256 8vo pages. KEY TO “FRENCH COMPOSITION,” with Notes and Remarks.

[To appear shortly. LEÇONS FRANÇAISES DE LITTERATURE ET DE CONVERSATION, pour faire suite aux “French Studies."

[In preparation.

* The right of Translation and adaptation is reserved

by the Author.

PREFACE.

This book is intended for pupils who have a certain amount of French reading, and have studied, if not the whole, at least the greater part of French syntax. Several pieces which I had originally selected for the work, I have laid aside; for in translating them into French, I found that they contained passages which could not be properly translated even by pupils who have made considerable progress. The present selection has been carefully revised and tested by translation, and will, it is hoped, afford exercises encouraging to the pupil and satisfactory to the master.

Following the plan of my other works, I have generally preferred extracts of a familiar and practical description to pieces of too rhetorical or lofty a style, which are not conducive to the acquirement of a conversational knowledge of a language. As some of the stories may appear too homely, I have to state that they contain words and idiomst which will prove most useful to all who are

+ “Boys are overwhelmed with manuals under all sorts of ridicu. lous names, intended to teach then idioms.

As for teaching

anxious to speak French, and for which they would vainly look in extracts of a higher character.

Certain compilations of this kind are half filled with selections from the English poets, but I have refrained from giving any poetry. I have been teaching French in Great Britain for about twenty years, and although I have met with many studious, intelligent, and well-prepared pupils, I have never expected them to put into French Shakspere's poetry, Milton's " Paradise Lost," Dryden's “Alexander's Feast,” Goldsmith's “ Deserted Village,” Gray's “Elegy written in a Country Churchyard,” Burns's “Cotter's Saturday Night," Campbell's Ye Mariners of England t," &c., every one of which we all admire, but which I should not like to see in the French of the cleverest of pupils, however grammatical the translation might be. If they succeed in turning English prose into good plain French, they and their teachers may rest and be thankful. A class cannot be expected to consist of literary men and future poets-laureate.

I have given subjects which have been treated by French authors quoted in “French Studies," or in my other publications, because it appeared to me that it

French idioms, there is nothing like little sentences of English for the boys to try their hands on. When they get beyond this, let them write a letter, or translate a penny-a-liner's paragraph in a newspaper about a robbery or a fire—not the leading article-into French.”—The Rev. Tho. MARKBY, On Public Schools, in “The Contemporary Review” of March 1867.

+ All these pieces, and many others of the same kind, have actually appeared without notes in books recently published in London for the use of English students of the French language.

would be at once curious and interesting to see how the writers of both nations have handled the same theme. I have thought that pupils who use my French Course would like to compare Voltaire with Colton (p. 59) or Maunder (p. 79), La Fontaine with Horace Walpole (p. 67), Molière with Fielding (p. 74), Derogeot with Beaumont (p. 81), Chéruel with Hallam (p. 108), Alphonse Karr with Chesterfield (p. 115), &c.

With regard to the RENDERINGS, which I have prefixed to each of the pieces as far as p. 149, I have endeavoured to give neither too many nor too few. When there were grammatical difficulties or idiomatic differences I have inserted foot-notes, but more frequently I have not hesitated to refer to “ The French Class-Book," which is now adopted in many schools. These references will in no way interfere with the work of those students who do not happen to have my other books. At page 150, I offer a set of extracts without notes, to be done by very far advanced pupils.

Towards the end of the book (p. 181) will be found preparatory exercises in French composition, followed by outlines † of Narratives, and a series of Letters calculated to elicit answers from pupils, who are often at a loss for a subject.

When the student reaches p. 101 of the English part, he might easily and profitably alternate with the two sets of exercises—one day translating an English extract into

+ Je publierai incessamment la traduction française de tous les morceaux contenus dans ce livre, et le développement des sujets de composition indiqués à la fin de l'ouvrage.

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