Titel: First English reading book: Engelsch leesboek voor instituten, gymnasiën en hoogere burgerscholen: met Nederlandsche woordenlijst
Auteur: Herrig, Ludwig
Uitgave: Arnhem: J. Voltelen, 1869 *
Auteursrechten: Zie auteursrechten
Citeerinstructie: Bijzondere Collecties van de Universiteit van Amsterdam, UBM: IWO 513 H 21
Onderwerp: Taal- en letterkunde naar afzonderlijke talen: Engelse taalkunde
Trefwoord: Leesvaardigheid, Engels, Leermiddelen (vorm)
* jaar van uitgave niet op de gebruikelijke wijze verkregen, mogelijk betreft het een schatting
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   First English reading book: Engelsch leesboek voor instituten, gymnasiën en hoogere burgerscholen: met Nederlandsche woordenlijst
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hundred and eighty windows for only one
front of a Post Office!
It would take me an hour to tell you all
about the Great Hall, which is a common
thoroughfare, and the pillars, and the gra-
nite pedestals, and the receiving rooms,
and the different offices fitted up with
«irawers and pigeon-holes, and the sorting
and stamping tables. Then, there is the
Foreign Office, the place for foreign let-
ters, and the London District Post Office.
Every minute that I stood in the hall, a
score or two of persons |ran up the stone
steps to put in letters, and now and then
a foreigner inquired, in broken English,
what part of the place he must go to.
A fire would be a terrible thing in this
building, for the burning of the letters
would occasion much distress, as well as
destroy all the bills they contained; there-
fore every care has been taken to make
the basement of the building fire-proof, by
turning arches of brick. The whole edifice
is lighted with gas.
You may think that a great many letters
go through the Post Office of our town;
and such is the fact, but there is nothing
like the number that go through the Post
Office in London. I made particular in-
quiry about it, and found that about twenty-
three millions of letters go through the
post every year, without reckoning those
of the Foreign Office, the Ship Letter
Office, and the London District Post. No
wonder that the building is so large, and
that so many people are employed in it.
Why, there must be as many as seventy-
live thousand letters every day. Owing to
the new system of the penny postage, in-
troduced by Sir Rowland flill, the num-
ber of letters which now pass through the
Post Office amount to about four hundred
millions a year. For the accommodation
of the public, the Post Office authorities
have lately adopted a system of money
orders, by which sums under L. 5, may be
safely transmitted to any part of the United
Kingdom. On paying the money at the
local Post Office, nearest your own house,
an order is handed to you, which you send
to your correspondent by post, and the
amount is paid when he presents it at the
Money-order Office nearest to him. This
plan was adopted in consequence of a great
tleal of money being lost when sent by
post; for when coin is put into a letter,
independent of the danger of its being
stolen, it may be dislodged by its being
tossed about in offices and bags.
Then, again, look at the newspapers:
some days there are twenty-five thousand
First Engl. Reading Book.
put in the post, and, at times, as many as
fifty or sixty thousand; why, the newspapers
themselves are more than thirteen millions
in a year. All these letters and papers
amount to a large sum. How much do you
think? why, about a thousand pounds a day,
not reckoning Sundays, or three hundred
thousand pounds a year; latterly this sum
has increased to nearly seven times the
amount, owing to the recent regulations in
this department.
The great change which has taken place
in the plans of the Post Office is owing
to the grand regulation, that letters are
conveyed to any distance, in the United
Kingdom, for the postage of a single penny,
provided they do not exceed half an ounce
in weight. The advantage derived by the
public from the cheap postage is so great,
that many more letters are sent by post
than there were formerly, and the number
is increasing every year.
You must know that when the clock
strikes six at night, the Post Office holes
are shut, so that people who put letters
into the office after that hour pay one penny
more. I was in the Great Hall a little be-
fore six, and I never saw such a sight be-
fore. The place was filled with a mass of
people ail in motion, just like a mob, so
many people running to get their letters
in before the holes were closed. You may
think what a hurry-scurry there was, when
1 tell you that, besides all the letters, as
many as twenty thousand newspapers were
put into the post in less than a quarter of
an hour. Just as the clock struck the last
stroke, in a twinkling all the holes were shut.
One window, however, where they put in bags
of newspapers, would not go down close,
for it had caught one of the leathern bags.
The folks inside pulled, and the people
outside pushed at the bag. All this time
those who had newspapers to put in, kept
throwing them at the window. Sometimes
as many as twenty were flying in the air
at once, some went through the opening,
some dashed against the panes, and some
fell among the crowd, while the people
were all crushing , and cramming, and laugh-
ing, together.
Post Offices were first established hi
England about 1581 , but regulated by par-
liament and made general in 1656. The
Penny Post was set up in London and sub-
urbs, by one Murray, an upholsterer, in
1681. But it was reserved for Rowland
Hill, Esq., a gentleman of sound knowledge,
to give to the world the idea of a uniform
inland rate of postage of one penny per
half oimce, a plan which came into operation