Logical Series

IT often happens that a student requires to remember a series of things. The days are gone, I hope, in which children are expected to reel off the names of all the kings and queens of Israel or of England, or of the capes on the coasts of Europe, Asia, Africa, or America. But it does often happen to anyone to be a convenience to be able to memorize a series of foreign words. Thus we might put together in suitable order the exceptions given by Dr. Pick as a mnemonic for the genders of French nouns, referred to in Chapter VIII.

The reader will readily see why I have said "in suitable order" if he remembers our experiment with a series of ideas in Chapter II. In that case he or she must have found that it was easy to remember cat—milk—dairy—shed—roof—top —head — eyes — reading — book — paper — white — moon —sun—glory—fame, but almost impossible to remember moon — dairy — head — paper — roof — milk — fame — eyes — white — reading — shed — glory — cat — top — sun —book, although the words are the same in both the series.

Let us then run over the easily remembered series, taking two at a time in order, and notice the Roads of Thought which made the remembering easy—

Cat and milk (Proximity);

milk and dairy (Proximity);

dairy and shed (Part);

shed and roof (Part);

roof and top (Class);

top and head (Class);

head and eyes (Part);

eyes and reading (Proximity);

reading and book (Proximity);

book and paper (Quality or Part);

paper and white (Quality);

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