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WITH A BRIEF
HISTORY OF THE PROGRESS OF THE ART,
Sixteen Engraved Lessons and Exercises.
BY G. BRADLEY,
EDITOR OF THE SUNDERLAND AND DURHAM COUNTY HERALD,
AND STENOGRAPHIC WRITER.
" Short-hand is the art of expressing all the words and phrases of the
AND ALL BOOKSELLERS.
The art of Stenography has of late years received considerable attention, both in this country and France, and a variety of systems, possessing more or less merit, have been issued from the press. Some of these are costly and abstruse, others imperfect and obscure, and most of them rather designed for enabling the learner to keep his private memoranda in secret characters, than for facilitating the acquirement of the speed requisite for following public orators, and for securing a literal transcript of their productions. Few indeed have been written by men themselves practical stenographists, or who have tested the value of the methods they have published by the standard of experience.
The author of this work, having been engaged for many years as a short-hand writer in one of the most extensive provincial newspaper establishments in the kingdom, and having had the advantage of great experience in every description of reporting, has been frequently urged by his friends to publish a concise and compendious system of the art, suitable alike for private students and scholastic institutions. He has now complied with their wishes ; and without pretending that this system even approximates to perfection, he trusts it will be found one of the best, if not the best, of those methods now known and practised. It is based, not on any mere fanciful theory, but upon rational and philosophical principles; it proposes nothing impracticable; it consists not of a mere jumble of awkward marks, thrown together without order, and consequently unintelligible to the writer himself, after the lapse of a few months ; but of a number of beautiful and legible characters, well arranged for the purpose of promoting uniformity and brevity, and consequent rapidity of writing. He disclaims any pretensions to having discovered any perfectly original system of Stenography : following the example of Mavor and HARDING, two of the best authors on the subject, he has adopted the alphabet which close investigation and ample experience have proved the most calculated to secure the requisite results --that alphabet he was taught at his commencement of the study, and subsequent practice and the careful consideration of upwards of twenty others, have induced him still to retain it. He has also introduced several of the arbitraries used by preceding authors, himself contributing to the common stock; and he has enlarged upon the various modes of abbreviations first adopted by Taylor. But however small may be the amount of originality or ingenuity found in this volume, he can safely aver that by it any individual of moderate attainments and ordinary industry may, even in a short space of time, be enabled to follow popular speakers, such as Lords Denman, Lyndhurst, Campbell, Morpeth, Howick, Sir Thos. Wilde, Sir Frederick Pollock, Mr. O'Connell, Mr. Justice Cresswell, Dr. Raffles, the Rev. Robert Newton, the Rev. James Parsons, Dr. Chalmers, Dr. Wardlaw
some of whose brilliant and masterly productions, and those of many others equally celebrated as orators, have been taken verbatim by the author in this system.
When the prospectuses of this work were issued, it was the author's intention to have inserted extracts from addresses delivered by a few of these celebrated personages, as exercises ; but difficulties were found to attend the selection of them, especially so as to avoid political, legal, or sectarian topics, and to bring them into a complete form, within a reasonable compass. The design was at length partially abandoned, and a sermon has been substituted, which will answer equally well as a practical illustration of the manner of writing, and as an exercise to the student in reading.
Some delay has occurred in the publication of this work, owing, at first, to a pressure of professional business, which precluded the author from directing his attention to it; and afterwards, to the indisposition of the engraver and lithographic printer, which prevented him completing the plates so soon as would otherwise have been the case. The author regrets exceedingly if any one desirous of learning the art should have been retarded in pursuing his studies from this delay; but he hopes the explanation he has given of its cause, will be deemed satisfactory.
To those kind and generous friends of all ranks in society, and of various religious sects and political parties, who have entered their names in the subscription list for this little book, the author begs to tender his warmest acknowledgments; and to such of them as may experience any difficulty in understanding the explanations