WALKINGAME, Francis. ~ The Tutor’s Assistant; being a compendium of Arithmetic, and a complete Question-book. Containing, I. Arithmetic in whole Numbers; being a brief Explanation of all its Rules, in a New and more concise Method than any hitherto published; with an Application to each Rule, consisting of a large Variety of Questions in real Business, with their Answers annexed. II. Vulgar Fractions, which are treated with a great deal of Plainness and Perspicuity, III. Decimals, with the Extraction of the Square, Cube, and Biquadrate Roots, after a very plain and familiar Manner; in which are set down Rules for the easy Calculation of Interest, Annuities, and Pensions in Arrear, the present Worth of Annuities, &c. either by Simple or Compound Interest. IV. Duodecimals, or Multiplication of Feet and Inches, with Examples applied to measuring and working by Multiplication, Practice, and Decimals. V. The Mensuration of Circles. VI. A collection of questions set down promiscuously, for the greater Trial of the foregoing Rules. To which are added, a new and very short method of extracting the cube-root, and a General Table for the ready calculating the Interest of any Sum of Money, at any Rate per Cent. likewise Rents, Salaries, &c. The whole being adapted either as a Question-Book for the Use of Schools, or as a Remembrancer and Instructor to such as have some Knowledge therein. This Work having been perused by several eminent Mathematicians and Accomptants, is recommended as the best Compendium hitherto published for the Use of Schools, or for private Persons… A new edition. Corrected, and every question worked anew, by T. Crosby, Head-Master of the Charity-School, York. York: printed by and for T. Wilson and R. Spence, 1800.
12mo (168 × 96 mm), pp. 192, plus folding engraved table opposite title. Contemporary sprinkled sheep, plain spine with 5 raised bands. Inscriptions of V. Vickers, Winson Green School [Birmingham] October 8th, 1802, a few annotations and minor ink spots. A very nice, unsophisticated copy.
First published in 1751, The Tutor’s Assistant became one of the best-selling mathematical books for over a century. ‘An incomplete listing comprises 276 editions, the last in 1885... The York editions, starting in 1797, were corrected by Thomas Crosby of that city’ (Wallis in Oxford DNB).’ Crosby also published a popular Key to the book, which itself ran to many editions.
‘This book is by far the most used of all school-books, and deserves to stand high among them’ (De Morgan, Arithmetical Books, 1847, 80, cited by Wallis).
Of the numerous provincial editions ESTC often records only a handful of copies. Of this issue it lists copies at BL and National Library of Scotland and another in a private collection. Another York issue of the same year (with imprint ‘by T. Wilson and R. Spence’) is held by the BL only.