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.

Free Trade and Markets

The Petition of the Candlemakers

Frédéric Bastiat made a tongue-in-cheek appeal to the French government, asking them to protect candlemakers from a cut-throat competitor.

Length: 116 words

Free Trade and Markets

The Broken Window

Inspired by economists in Britain, Frédéric Bastiat explained to his own Government why their initiatives to boost the economy so often fail.

Length: 120 words

Character and Conduct

Class Act

On a visit to an English parish church, American author Washington Irving was treated to an eye-opening contrast between Georgian society’s Old Money and her New.

Length: 176 words

Extracts from Literature


Educational reformer Emily Davies argued that Victorian women had more to offer society than a purely ornamental erudition.

Length: 115 words

Anglo-Saxon Era

A Feast in Time of Slaughter

After winning the English crown at the Battle of Hastings, William of Normandy ensured everyone understood what kind of man their new King was.

Length: 109 words

Discovery and Invention

Observation, Analogy, Experiment

Sir Humphry Davy explains in simple terms what it is that leads to scientific progress.

Length: 112 words