New England Primer

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Calvinist school book, compiled and published by Benjamin Harris, probably in 1683 and certainly before 1690. In its frequent revisions, it is estimated to have sold more than 5,000,000 copies. Besides the letters of the alphabet, illustrated by crudely rhymed couplets and woodcuts, the book contained simple moral texts based on Old Testament history and wisdom, and the prayer “Now I lay me down to sleep.”

Subjects: Bibliography.

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