Mini Copy Book

Each post in this section is a short précis (summary) of a passage in The Copy Book. All of them are in modern English. They are intended for students of English as a Foreign Language at Elementary Level.

The British Constitution

The Wisdom of the People

In one of his ‘Cato Letters’, John Trenchard took issue with the view (popular in Westminster) that the public could not be left to make up their own minds.

Length: 113 words

Russian History

The Great Northern War

Peter the Great wanted Russia to join the nations of Western Europe, but the nations of Western Europe refused to make room for him.

Length: 115 words

Free Speech and Conscience

Thank Heaven for Free Speech

The authors of the ‘Cato Letters’ recalled how Greek general Timoleon replied when the people he had saved from oppression turned and bit him.

Length: 59 words

Greek Myths

Lover’s Leap

Joseph Addison tells the legend of the great Greek poetess Sappho and the Lover’s Leap.

Length: 119 words

Georgian Era

How I Learnt to Write

Benjamin Franklin recalls the disciplines he put himself through on the way to becoming one of America’s literary giants.

Length: 117 words

Russian History

A Royal Rescue

Despite failing health, Peter the Great of Russia leapt into Kronstadt Bay to save some young sailors from a watery grave.

Length: 58 words