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The Instructor, or American Young Man's Best Companion Containing Spelling, Reading, Writing, and Arithmetick
Fisher, George
Published by Isaiah Thomas, Worcester
Location of original: Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston, Massachusetts
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42 The American Young Man's best Companion  

must be of equal Depth, as the f, g, p, q, and s. The Capitals must bear the same Proportion one to another, with Respect to Bigness and Height, as the A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, &c.--This Proportion of Letters, both of small and great, must be observed in, and will serve for, all Hands whatsoever. N.B. That all upright Strokes, and those leaning to the left Hand, must be fine or hair Strokes : And all downright Strokes must be fuller or blacker. And when you are in Joining, where the Letters will naturally join, without any straining, take not off the Pen in Writing, especially in running or mixed Hands. Care likewise must be duly taken, that there be an equal Distance between Letter and Letter, and also between Word and Word : The Distance between Word and Word, may be the Space that the small m takes up ; but between Letter and Letter not quite so much. Sit not long at Writing (that is, no longer than you improve) especially at first, lest it weary you, and you grow tired of Learning. Imitate the best Examples, and have a constant Eye at your Copy ; and be not ambitious of writing fast, before you can write well : Expedition will naturally follow, after you have gained a Habit of writing fast and free ; and it is much more commendable to be an Hour in writing six Lines well, than to be able to write sixty Lines in the same Time, which perhaps will be altogether unintelligible. And besides, by a slow and fair Procedure, you will learn in Half the Time ; and there it is a vain Thought in a Learner, to desire to be quick, before he hath acquired Experience and a Freedom of writing by frequent Practice. If you have Cotton in your Ink, look well that there be no Hairs at the Nib of your Pen. Never over charge your Pen with Ink ; but shake what is too much into the Ink Pot again.

How to make a P E N.

THIS is gained sooner by Experience and Observation from others that can make a Pen well, than by verbal Directions. But note, That those Quills called Seconds are the best, as being hard, long, and round in the Barrel ; and before you begin to cut the Quill, scrape off the superfluous Scurf, with the Back of your Pen Knife ; scrape most on the Back of your Quill, that the Slit may be the finer, and without Gander's Teeth (as the Roughness in the slit is by some called.) After you have scraped the Quill as


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