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English Composition, Lesson 09. The Conclusion; Theme 2

To complete this lesson, complete the following tasks:

  1. Study the lesson for mastery.
  2. Complete Theme II.
  3. Complete the lesson Exam.

Lesson

Since the point of a story marks the climax of interest, it is evident that the conclusion must not be long delayed after the point has been reached.  If the story has been well told, the point marks the natural conclusion, and a sentence or two will serve to bring the story to a satisfactory end. If a suitable ending does not suggest itself, it is better to omit the conclusion altogether than to construct a forced or flowery one. Notice the conclusion of the incident of the Civil War below:

During the Civil War, I lived in that portion of Tennessee which was alternately held by the conflicting armies. My father and brothers were away, as were all the other men in the neighborhood, except a few very old ones and some half-grown boys. Mother and I were in constant fear of injury from stragglers from both armies. We had never been disturbed, for our farm was a mile or more back from the road along which such detacliments usually moved. We had periods of comparative quiet in which we felt at ease, and then would come
reports of depredation near at hand, or rumors of the presence of marauding bands in neighboring settlements.

One evening such a rumor came to us, and we were consequently anxious. Early next morning, before the fog had lifted, I caught sight of two men crossing the road at the far end of the orchard. They jumped over the fence into the orchard and disappeared among the trees. I had but a brief glimpse of them, but it was sufficient to show me that one had a gun over his shoulder, while the other carried a saber.

“Quick, Mother, quick ! ” I cried. ” Come to the window. There are soldiers in the orchard.”

Keeping out of sight, we watched the progress of the men through the orchard. Our brief glimpses of them through the trees showed that they were not coming directly to the house, but were headed for the barn and sheds, and in order to keep out of sight, were following a slight ravine which ran across the orchard and led to the back of the barns.

Mother and I were very much excited and hardly knew what to. do. Finally it was determined to hide upstairs in hopes that the men were bent on stealing chickens or pigs, and might leave without disturbing the house. We locked the doors and went upstairs, taking with us the old musket and the butcher knife. We could hear the men about the barn, and after what seemed an interminable time we heard them coming towards the house.

Though shaking all over, I summoned courage enough to go to the window and look out of a hole in the shade. As the men came into sight around the corner, I screamed outright, but from relief rather than fear, for the men were not soldiers, but Grandpa Smith and his fourteen-year-old gi-andson. They stopped at the well to get a drink, and when we opened the window, the old man said, ” We’re just on our way to mow the back lot and stopped to grind the scythe on your stone. We broke ours yesterday.”

Then he picked up the scythe which in the fog I had taken for a saber, while the grandson again shouldered his pitchfork musket.

Theme II

Write a short theme suggested by one of the following subjects:

  1. A school picnic.
  2. A race.
  3. The largest fire I have seen.
  4. A skating accident.
  5. A weird mistake.
  6. An experience with,a tramp.

Correct with reference to meaning and clearness. Consider the introduction; the point; the conclusion.

Exam

  • English Composition, Lesson 09 Exam