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From the ninth century down to the present, one language 
— English — has always been spoken by the people of our 
land. To make this clear is the aim kept in view 
throughout all the etymological sections of this hand- 
book. For obvious reasons, Orthography and Orthoepy 
are but briefly noticed. 

The repetitions seen in the earlier sections on Etymo- 
logy are traits belonging to the plan of the book. There 
are readers who would first of all notice chiefly om* 
modern forms and their classification. Others would 
study the union of the old and the new. For the con- 
venience of the former, an asterisk is here and there pre- 
fixed to historical paragraphs that may be omitted, and 
facts, already given in treating of old forms, are named 
again where new forms are classified. In the Table of 
Contents titles of elementary sections, and parts of 
sections, are set in capitals. These parts of the work may 
ibe viewed as a first course of lessons. 

For the parts of speech, their old nomenclature is 
mostly retained. Adjectives are sometimes called 
* Participles,' because their stems are used in verbs, and 
for the same reason certain Nouns are described as 
'' Gerunds.' At the same time some errors of classifica- 



tion have been avoided, alterations in uses have been 
noticed, and many words practically vague, as regards the 
classes to which they belong, are here called ' Vague 
Words' (pp. 276, 284). 

Old Verbs are arranged in seven classes, and so as 
to show their historical connection with earlier forms, 
which- are more distinctly classified as regards their 
changes of vowels (pp. 89-95, 121-30). New Verbs — 
including those sometimes called ' irregular ' — are also 
distinctly and historically classified (pp. 101-5, 132-36). 

Secondary Derivatives, Compounds, Divisions of Sylla- 
bles, Sources of Words and Alterations of their forms — 
these are the subjects treated of in several later sections,, 
where references are given to many useful books. All the 
books, grammatical and lexicographical, to which the 
writer is more or less indebted are named, and several 
are named of which he knows nothing more than their 
general characteristics. 

Eeading is the first and the best way of studying 
Syntax. Our best prose-writers are our teachers, and their 
permanent usages are our rules. Still a grammarian may 
render good service when he collects numerous examples, 
and classifies them so that they may be readily found. 
He may afterwards frame some rules, and these may 
indeed be defective ; but there will be one good result of 
the plan : the reader who may not like the rules will first 
of all have tlie facts laid before him, and then will be 
able to make rules for his own guidance. His knowledge 
of the freedom allowed by usage will serve as a defence 
against small criticism, and the observance of a few rules 
will make his confidence secure. 

Accordingly, throughout all the sections on Syntax, 
the method pursued is inductive : examples precede rules^ 
and while these are comparatively few, those are very 


numerous — so numerous, indeed, that, if printed in a large 
type, they would fill a volume of some considerable size. 
Excepting only a few of the shortest excerpts, and some 
specimens of familiar prose (mostly followed by Grj, these 
examples have been selected, not from Grammars and 
Dictionaries, but from writings belonging to our best 
standard literature. They represent, therefore, the laws 
of construction observed during the last three centuries, 
and many excerpts from the writings of earlier times are 
given. One of the writer's aims is to direct attention to 
works in which Old English is made a special subject of 
study. Here Modern English is predominant. 

The nomenclature employed in Syntax is one that 
might have been suggested by the words of an old author 
— ' All things are as is their use.' For the most part this 
nomenclature has already been employed in an excellent 
English Grrammar.^ The limitation introducing the fact 
here stated implies no wish to attenuate the force of words 
in a confession of obligation. In classifying under their 
common name, Adverbiais, a large number of words and 
phrases — the latter including many translations of Latin 
cases — the writer of this manual is supported, as he 
believes, by the authority of clear definitions given in the 
work referred to. At the same time it is right to add 
that he alone is responsible for the details of that classifi- 
cation given in pp. 230-32, 327-44, 354-62. 

The Eules of Syntax are arranged in an order corre- 
sponding with that of preceding observations and examples, 
and the numbers of the paragraphs consisting mostly of 
examples correspond with those prefixed to observations. 
Accordingly, the facts on which each rule is based may be 
readily found. The rule given (p. 373) for distinct uses 

' English Chrammar ; including the Principles of Grammatical Analysis. 
By C P. Mason, B.A., Fellow of University College, London. 


of that and which may be noticed here, and for other 
•examples the reader may turn to the rules of concord for 
Subjects and Verbs (pp. 373-74). There under each 
rule is given at least one reference, while the number 
that refers to observations points also to examples. Eefe- 
rences are thus made more useful than rules. ' The Verb 
agrees with the Subject in number and person.' There 
are many apparent exceptions, and of these some have 
been hastily condemned as bad grammar. Here, then, 
as in other instances, the chief use of the rule is to direct 
attention to examples and to certain formal or merely 
apparent anomalies : in other words, the references are 
more useful than the rule itself, which — left alone — might 
leave room for doubt, or lead to error. Facts and rules 
rarely agree together exactly. 

The Rules of Syntax are followed by tabular forms for 
analyses of sentences, and in later sections the following 
subjects are noticed : — Parsing, Punctuation, Order, In- 
versions, Ellipses. These sections, taken together, may 
serve as an Introduction to Composition. Of Composition 
itself only a few words are said, but these may possibly 
lead to the study of books in which the subject is more 
largely treated. 

Verse is not Poetry ; but ideas and their appropriate 
forms are closely united in the works of true poets ; and 
as Poetry itself is a theme of large extent and variety, so 
its true form — good versification — must have various and 
harmonious changes, such as cannot be well shown in 
mechanical tables of measures and accents. It does not 
follow that, because one knows a little of Grrammar, he is 
therefore able to describe well such versification as is found 
in the poetry of Shakespeare, of Milton, of Coleridge. 
Prosody has been viewed as a subject too extensive to be 
treated of in this compendium. 


In connexion with observations on alterations in the 
forms of words, some brief remarks are here and there 
added respecting changes in meanings. Here, possibly, 
the writer oversteps the boundary-line within which the 
study of Grrammar should be confined. The motive has 
been a wish to invite attention to historical studies of 
languages regarded as expressions of culture. It is indeed 
but little that is said here respecting the most interesting 
of all the inquiries suggested by those studies. Whence 
came our best descriptive words for our uses of ordinary 
life? The question is readily answered (pp. 13, 178-80). 
Whence our words relating to notions of law and govern- 
ment ? The question, though not as easy as the former, 
may still be answered without much difficulty. But 
whence the higher meanings given to so many words of 
which the primitive uses are almost forgotten ? Whence 
their association with sentiments infinitely more to be 
cared for than any culture of our intellectual faculties ? 
That is a question to which historical studies of languages 
may some day give a clear and authoritative reply. A 
study more interesting than Grrammar may at least be 
named here — the English Language in its union with 
the History of England. 


Titles of elementary or merely analytical sections, or parts of sections^ 
arc set in Eoman capitals. 


First English — Old English — Modern English. 



1. The Written Alphabet 

2. The Spoken Alphabet .... 

3. Faults of the Written Alphabet . • 

4. Syllables. . . . 

5. Accent . ... 

6 Division of Syllables .... 


7. Intkoduction 

8. Nouns . 

9. Pronouns 

10. Adjectttes 

11. Veebs - 

12. Adverbs : Forms 


13. Prepositions : Forms 

Uses . 

14. Conjunctions : Forms 

Uses . 

15. Interjections 








16. Introduction. Nouns. E.I. 

17. NotTNS. M.E. .... 

18. Pronouns. E.I. 
Peonouns. M.E. 

19. Adjectives. E.I., E.IL 
Adjectives. M.E. 

20. Verbs. E.I., E.II. . 

21. Verbs. The Oi-d Conjugation. M.E. 

22. The New Conjugation. M.E. 

23. The Subjunctive Mood . 

24. Extended Compound Conjugation 

25. Iebegular Verbs. M.E. 

26. Adverbs. E.I., E.IL 
Adverbs. M.E. 


27. Introduction 

28. Noun Suffixes. English 

29. Noun Suffixes. Eoman 

30. Adjective Suffixes. English 

31. Adjective Suffixes. Roman 

32. Vbbbal Suffixes. Adverbial Suffixes 


33. Introduction 

34. Compound Nouns 
36. Compound Adjectives 

36. Compound Verbs 

37. Prefixes. English . 

38. Eoman and Gtreek Prefixes 

39. Sources of English "Words . 

40. Latin Compounds 

41. Alterations of Words 

42. Divisions of Syllables . 








. 218 

The Structure of Periods 

. . 236 

Prose Writers : 1366-1860 

. 244 

Ordinary Prose 

. . 264 

List of Prose Writers : 1300-1870 

. 272 



Subjects: Words .... 

. . 275 

Phrases .... 

. 281 

Clauses .... 

. . 282 


Attributes : Words . . . . 

. 283 

Phrases . . • . 

. . 29a 

Clauses .... 

. 292 


Verbs : Concords .... 

. . 299 

Moods .... 

. 313 

Tenses ..... 

. . 3ia 

Complements , . , 

. 322 


Adverbials : Words . . . . 

. . 327 

Phrases .... 

. 334 

Clauses .... 

. . 34a 


Objects: Words .... 

. 344 

Phrases .... 

. . 35a 

Clauses .... 

. 353 


Prepositions: Sequences 

. . 365 


Conjunctions: 'And' 

. 362 


. . 363 


. 366 


Interjections . . . 


. .. 36a 


Introduction ..... 

. 371 


Subjects . . . ... 

. . 371 


Attkibutes ..... 

. 372 


Verbs ...... 

. . 373 


Complements .... 

. 376 






The Subjunctive Mood 

Objects . 

Words Indirectly Governed 





60. Tabular Forms of Analysis . • . 

61. Parsing . 

62. Punctuation . 

63. Order . . . - . 

64. Inversions . 

65. Ellipses . 

66. Composition . 






The English Language in its Union with the History of Englaiul. 


I. . English, Latin . 

English, Old French, Latin . 
. English, Old French, Late Latin 
English, Old French, Tentojiic 
English, Greek . 
II. Latin, English 

III. Greek, English . 

















Modern Englisli is a composite language, of wliicli the 
main elements are English and Roman. 

Nearly all the short words, well understood by the people, 
are pure English. 

The words by which men express most briefly and power- 
fully their thoughts and feelings ; the common names of things 
seen in the heavens and on the earth ; ' sun,* * moon,' * stars,' 
' sunrise,' ' twilight,' * hills,' ' dales,' ' streams,' ' springs,' 
'waterfalls;' the household words 'father,' 'mother,' 'brother,' 
'sister,' 'kindred;' the words 'right,' 'true,' 'kind,' 'good,' 
and others in which moral judgments are most readily uttered ; 
' the words that go straight to men's heads and hearts : ' 
these are mostly English words. 

Roman words, either borrowed immediately from the Latin, 
or coming to us through the medium of Norman-French, supply 
convenient forms of expression for the abstractions and gene- 
ralizations of jurisprudence, politics, science, philosophy, art, 
and criticism. To these departments (especially to science) 
several words derived from Greek belong. The Roman element 
supplies, moreover, many terms for which synonyms are found 
in pure English ; hence the Composite Language is enriched, 
with regard to both variety and harmony of expression. 
1^'rom the union of the two vocabularies — English and Roman 
— are derived the wealth and the versatility of Modem 
f! English. 


The two elements of the language have not been com- 
bined as two parts equal to each other in use and importance. 
English supplies the best, as well as the most numerous, 
words of our living vocabulary, and, moreover, prescribes 
laws for the construction of sentences. Our Grammar is 
English. We can write or sjpeah without any aid derived from 
Roman words. On the other hand, to write or speak without 
aid derived from English grammar and the English vocabulary 
is impossible. 

The use of Roman words may be limited by the rule of 
'■ one or two in thirty, "* and we may still have the language 
found in our Bible of the seventeenth century. In many of 
the narrative parts of that version the few Roman words 
found might, without any loss of truth or strength, be put 
into English. In a word, wherever good Composite English 
is spoken or written, pure English maintains its mastership. 

Whence came the Oldest English ? When was it spread 
as the language of Britain ? How did it become mixed with 
many Boman words ? The history that answers these ques- 
tions may here be given in outlines, and may be divided into 
the following three periods : — 

I. The time 450-1100, when the Oldest English, or Eirst 
English (sometimes called ' Anglo-Saxon '), was spoken. 

II. The time 1100-1558. Several transitional forms of 
the language spoken during this period (including more than 
four centuries) may here be collectively called Old English. 
(The special names given to several transitional forms of the 
language may be noticed in another place.) 

III. The time extending from the Elizabethan age to the 
present — the period in which Modern English has been pre- 
valent in literature. 

450-1100. About a hundred years after the birth of 
Christ, the greater portion of that part of Britain now called 
England was governed by a Roman army. It is believed 
that, at that time, almost all the tribes dwelling in Great 
Britain and Ireland belonged to the Keltic race, which had 
spread itself over the West of Europe, and was divided into 


two main branches — Gaelic and Bntish. The two main 
branches of the Keltic languages then spoken in Great Britain 
and Ireland, have been named respectively Oaelic and Gymraeg. 
To the former branch belonged the Erse language, spoken by 
the people of Ireland, and the Gaelic, spoken in the Highlands 
of Scotland. The Gymraeg, spoken in old time in the 
central and southern parts of Britain, is represented, in 
modern times, by the Welsh language. Among the peoples 
speaking these languages the Irish and the Scottish High- 
landers maintained their independence, and in the land now 
called England and Wales the tribes dwelling in the north 
and in the extreme west were obstinate in the assertion of 
their freedom. 

The Roman conquest of Britain was made by force of 
arms, and, apparently, was followed by no extensive culture, 
moral or intellectual, of the subjugated people. Their lan- 
guage, therefore, remained mostly separated from the Latin 
spoken by the Romans at th(,^ir military stations, and by 
some educated natives, whose subservience and intelligence 
qualified them for holding appointments under the govern- 
ment. Men of this class are described by Tacitus as servile 
imitators of Roman manners, and as students of the Latin 
language. ' It is reported,' says Martial, ' that Britannia now 
sings our verses,' i.e. '■ natives of Britain now study Roman 
poetry.' This was probably an exaggeration, but might have 
some basis in facts. For the assertions of both Tacitus and 
Martial are partly, though indirectly, confirmed by C^sar. 
The British people, he teUs us, had schools governed by 
studious men, and the recitation of verses was one of their 
modes of teaching. These assertions are not contradicted 
by a want of evidence to show that Roman culture was 
transmitted by the natives of Britain to the invaders, who 
came in great numbers soon after the island was deserted by 
the Romans. The want of such evidence may be ascribed to 
the means by which the invaders gained possession of the 
soil, and to the relations which they afterwards held to the 
subjugated or expelled natives. 

B 2 


The Keltic language of Britain, still living in the Cymraeg 
tongue (called Welsh), contains many stems like those found 
in Latin words ; but it is, nevertheless, clearly separated, on 
one side, from languages based upon Latin ; on the other, 
from languages called Teutonic. Of course it is not ignored 
here that Latin, Keltic, and Teutonic tongues all belong to 
the so-called Aryan stock of languages. The primitive union 
of Aryan languages belongs to a time indefinitely more ancient 
than that to which we here refer — the time a.d. 43-410. It 
seems clear that, during the whole time of the Roman 
dominion, the people of Britannia spoke mostly Keltic tongues, 
and that some tribes in the south of the island spoke Cymraeg, 
or dialects closely connected with it, such as the Cornish and 
the Armorican. Such words as ' craig ' (for ' stan ') and ' caer * 
(for ' hurg ') may indicate how widely the Cymraeg language 
differed from English. A rocky district in Yorkshire was 
called ' Craigvan ' (' the district of rocks ') by the Cymraeg 
people, and was, afterwards, called ' Stanclif ' by the English 
people. That district now retains both names. The pastoral 
district called Craven almost exactly corresponds to the 
wapentake called Staindiffe. In other parts of England hills 
and rivers have retained their ancient Cymraeg names, as in 
the examples ' Avon,^ ' Bon,'' ' Mendip,^ and ' PenyganV 

About four hundred years after the Christian era, not 
only the Roman province north of the Alps, but also Italy 
and Rome itself, were disturbed by the incursions of migratory 
tribes, who, as far as we know, had no collective name for 
themselves. At a later time they called themselves ' the 
people.' As long ago as a hundred years before the birth of 
Christ two of these tribes marched from districts lying near 
the Baltic, and attempted an invasion of Roman territory. 
They not only marched but also fought separately, and were 
defeated by Marius. About fifty years later other incursive 
tribes, belonging to the migratory people of Central Europe, 
were repelled by the bold genius of Cjisar. But the 
lesson then taught was forgotten when Varus led Roman 
legions to defeat and extermination in the forest-land of ' the 


people ' beyond the Rhine. Henceforth the name Rome lost, 
more and more, its power to terrify, and, in proportion with 
the decline of Roman military power, the audacity of the 
incnrsive peoples increased. Several of their tribes, here 
and there, united their arms. The Saxon Union, or Federa- 
tion, had its head-quarters on the Lower Elbe ; another 
Federation (the Gothic) held possession of tracts of land 
near the Black Sea, and of a district lying between the 
Danube and the Dnieper. Driven hence by other incursive 
tribes, the Goths first prayed for such aid as the falling 
empire might afford, and afterwards rose in rebellion against 
Rome. Incursions in Greece, Upper Italy, and Gaul followed, 
and in 410 Rome itself was captured by Alaric. About the 
same time the Roman army was called away from the province 
Britannia, which was thus left destitute of protection, and 
with no better government than several factions, or parties 
(called states), could afford. 

Left in these circumstances, the British islanders were ill 
prepared to defend themselves against numerous invaders who, 
soon afterwards, came over from the mainland. These in- 
vaders belonged to the migratory Teutonic people, and one of 
their languages was the Oldest English. 

The general impulse of migration that had urged other 
tribes southward, drove tribes from the north-west mainland 
over the North Sea and to the coast of Britain. These in- 
vaders came mostly from Schleswig, Friesland, Jutland, and 
from districts lying near the Lower Elbe. 

Some of their tribes had already made predatory incursions 
on the coast of Britain, during the period of the Roman 
dominion. Soon after the time when the island was deprived 
of Roman protection, Teutonic invaders began to come more 
frequently and in greater numbers ; but no sudden conquest of 
Britannia was ever made. 

Of all the invading people, the most victorious were the 
men who called themselves Engle (= ' Englishmen '). Their 
home on the mainland was Schleswig. 

It seems, at least, probable that the whole tribe of the Engle 


(the * Englishmen ') emigrated from their home in Schleswig 
and camo to Britain in the course of about one hundred and 
fifty years after a.d. 460. 

During that period they spread themselves over the 
greater part of the east coast extending from Suffolk to the 
Frith of Forth. In the same time another invading tribe 
gained possession of Essex and Sussex, while a third band 
seized the Isle of Wight and some parts of Hampshire. 

Englishmen and those who accompanied them (including 
some Frisians) were the most powerful and successfal of all 
the invading tribes. 

In the time above defined, Englishmen and their followers 
(including the men from Frieslaud) not only seized and held 
possession of the length of coast above named, but also 
spread themselves inland through Northamptonshire, and into 
all the eight shires that form the boundary of that long tract 
of land. These successful invaders called the conquered 
territory 'Engla-land,' and tbeir language was afterwards 
called ' the English Speech.' This was the language which 
was written and spoken by Alfred. 

This Oldest English of which we have any knowledge was 
one of the several cognate Teutonic languages spoken, before 
the fall of Rome and during the earlier Middle Ages, by the 
migratory peoples of Central and Northern Europe. All their 
languages, with their descendants, have been included under 
the family name ' German ; ' but this name is specially used to 
designate the language spoken by the people who now occupy 
the greater part of Central Europe. It is better, therefore, to 
include all the German languages under the family name 
' Teutonic ' — a word derived from the name given by the 
Romans to one of the tribes conquered by Maeius. 

Of the mediaeval Teutonic languages these seven have left 
some remains of their literature: — Gothic, English, Old 
Saxon, Frisian, Icelandic, Old High German, and Middle High 

Some considerable parts have been preserved of a Gothic 
translation of the Bible, made by Bishop Ulfilas, who lived 


in the fourth century. That the Gothic language (of which 
no direct descendant survives) was closely allied with the 
Oldest English, might be easily shown by a reference to ' the 
Lord's Prayer,' or to any chapter in the Gothic version of the 
New Testament. 

With respect to the antiquity of its hterature, English 
stands next to Gothic. Our oldest epic poem, ' Beowulf ,' was 
reconstructed and edited (most probably in England), some 
time before the tenth century ; but the heathen ballads on 
which it is founded belong to a time when the English people 
lived on the mainland and knew nothing of Christianity. 
^Beowulf is a story of marvellous strength and courage, put 
forth especially in a battle with a fiery dragon. Some of the 
more pleasing parts of the story indicate a love of music and 
poetry, existing in times when fighting was the chief business 
of life. To the later reconstruction of the story may be 
ascribed some insertions containing expressions of Christian 

The oldest work preserved in Old Saxon is a remarkable 
epic poem, the ' Heliand ' (the ' Saviour '), founded on a har- 
mony of the Gospels. It seems to have been written by a 
poet who hardly knew more of Christianity than its history, 
and who was, perhaps, assisted by a monastic teacher. To 
show the relationship of English and Old Saxon the ' Heliand ' 
may be compared with ' Beowulf; ' or vnth the poems ascribed 
to an English monk, Cj:dmon, who (it is believed) lived at 
Whitby in the seventh century. 

Old Saxon is now represented by its descendants : — Loio 
German (a dialect), Flemish^ and the Dutch (spoken in 

Old Frisian, another near relative to the English language, 
is represented in literature only by a few legal documents, 
which belong to the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Modern 
Frisian (spoken in Friesland) is still remarkably like Old 

The Icelandic language (or Old Norse), still surviving in 
Iceland, is the parent of Danish and Swedish. 


All the five languages, Gothic, English, Old Saxon, Frisian, 
and Icelandic, are called Lower Teutonic, as distinct from two 
mediaeval Teutonic languages called Old High German and 
Middle High German. The former (including several dialects) 
was written and spoken in Upper or South Germany, from 
the eighth century to the time of the Crusades ; the latter 
from the time of the Crusades to the Reformation. J^ew High 
German is the name given to the language mostly employed in 
German literature since the time when Luther's German 
translation of the Bible was completed. These three lan- 
guages have been called High German, with respect to certain 
phonetic changes not found in the Lower Teutonic group of 
languages, to which English belongs. 

The whole of the Teutonic family is as remarkable for the 
UJceness as for the diversity of the languages which it includes. 
The likeness generally prevailing throughout the whole family 
vocabulary of stem-words is, to a great extent, concealed 
under the diversity of forms used for derivation and con- 
struction, and is, moreover, disguised by various modes of 

So far First English has been described as a Teutonic 
language. The next passage in its history must be very 
briefly noticed here. It has been told that, in the time 
450-600, the English and their followers made themselves 
masters of the greater part of the island. How far was their 
series of conquests attended by a banishment, or a flight of 
the Cymraeg people ? Were the conquered tribes of some 
districts treated as the slaves of the victorious invaders ? 
Or, after contests in several localities, were the natives allowed 
to retreat gradually westward ? How far did any inter- 
mixture of the two languages, Cymraeg and English, take 
place ? What proportionate part of Cymraeg words does Old 
English contain ? 

These are very difficult questions, and must be left to 
excite further research. Theory, partly founded on history, 
may serve, however, to indicate, some conclusions to which 
inquiry may lead. It is admitted that, soon after the 


Christian era, invaders, more energetic and united than the 
natives of Britain, made incursions on the east coast, and 
after the departure of the Roman forces, came in greater 
numbers, subdued native tribes having no strong union, and 
so spread themselves along the coast and in some midland 
districts. Without accepting all that Gildas tells of exter- 
minating TTarfare against the Britons, it may be admitted 
that the invaders put to death many of the natives, and 
treated others as slaves ; for slavery was a Teutonic institution 
in those as in earlier times. In the Oldest English the 
word wealh, meaning, at first, any foreign man, also denotes 
* a slave,' and wylen denotes a woman who is a slave. 

A speedy conquest of the whole island was impracticable. 
The invaders and new settlers, having seized the best land 
lyiitig near the east coast and in some more inland districts, 
allowed the defeated people to retreat more and more 
westward into Wilts, Devon, Cornwall, and Wales. In pro- 
portion as the rule of the invaders was extended and con- 
firmed, their language superseded the Cymraeg. This was, 
however, long preserved in Cornwall, and it is still spoken 
in Wales, i.e. the land of the Wealhas, or the people who 
were first expelled and afterwards were described as 
foreigners. There the Cymraeg people, abiding within their 
own boundary, long maintained their independence, and 
cherished in poetical forms recollections of old times. 

Under such circumstances as have been noticed, the 
more intelligent natives of South and West Britain might 
well retain some traits of Roman culture, which they would 
not — or rather could not — transmit to Teutonic invaders of 
the land. Accordingly we have no sure evidence of any in- 
terfusion of the two languages Cymraeg and First English, 
or of any extensive transmission of Roman words through 
the medium of the native tongue. Some Roman local names 
were preserved — such as ' Colchester ' and ' Lincoln ' — and 
some native names of places, hills, and rivers : — ' Daventry,' 
' Lynn,' ' Craven ' (a rocky district), 'Penygant,' and 'Avon.* 
Beside these local names, it seems probable that the settlers 


would borrow from the natives some words of frequent us& 
— such as masters may learn from their servants, or slaves — 
and that slaves might borrow some words from their masters* 

These are suppositions that must be further tested by 
comparison of the two languages — Cymraeg and English — as 
spoken in the oldest times of which we have any knowledge. 
It is well known that the Cymraeg, as now spoken in Wales, 
contains many words having stems like those found in Eng- 
lish words. But this fact of likeness may be ascribed partly 
to causes having no reference to any remote antiquity. 

A likeness of stems found in Modern English and in tho 
language still spoken in Wales, tells nothing of any mixture 
of the two languages in the period of First English. In 
every case where a likeness of stems is noticed, several ques- 
tions must be well studied, before any theory can be founded 
on the likeness. * Is that likeness more than may be as- 
cribed to the common, remote origin of the two languages ? * 
To take as examples the two words ' glyn ' and ' glen ' — 
having the same meaning — our first questions must be : 
' How old is the word ' glen ' in English ? ' and ' What is the 
oldest date of glyn in Welsh ? ' Modern importations of words 
from one tongue into the other have but slight interest, 
since they cast no light on that obscure yet attractive part 
of history, the English invasion of Britain. It may be added 
that care should be taken, lest study should be expended 
on likenesses that are merely accidental. As fragments of 
various rocks are carried down by a stream, and are, by slow 
degrees, worn, rounded, and made alike, so words coming 
from various sources are, in the course of time, reduced to 
likeness or identity of form. For example, ^ pert,'' in Modern 
Welsh, is in form, as well as in use, like the English word 
* pert,' which is the stem of the Latin word ' a-pert-us.* 

With these mere hints respecting its interest and its 
difficulty, we leave open the question — 'What proportionate 
part of Cymraeg words does Old English contain ? ' [_8ee 


In the seventh century some knowledge of the Christian 
Religion was spread among the English people. In the fol- 
lowing hundred years the land was greatly disturbed by fac- 
tions ; two of the more pacific rulers retired into convents ; 
others made pilgrimages to Rome, and left their people with- 
out government. Meanwhile, the general migratory move- 
ment of the Teutonic peoples had not ended with the several 
invasions of Britain in 450-600. Near the close of the eighth 
century, bands of Northmen (called ' Danes ' ) made attacks 
on the English coast. Their incursions were repeated in the 
ninth century, and spread dismay over the land, until they 
were for a time suppressed by Alfred. 

Soon after his death, men coming from the shores of the 
Baltic and the North Sea invaded England ; a series of battles 
followed, and the tenth century closed with a massacre of 
* the Danes.' It has been supposed that these circumstances 
had a considerable effect in changing the language spoken 
ia England ; but in the tenth century the abbot and bishop 
JSlfric wrote ' in English ' (' that he might be understood 
by the unlettered people ') a treatise ' On the Old and the 
New Testament.' 

In the early part of the next century the King of Den- 
mark invaded England, and his son (Canute) ruled over the 
land in 1018-36. 

Still the language of the people remained English, and 
in that language Canute's secular laws were written and 
published; because they were intended to be understood 
and to be held valid throughout all England — * ofer eall 

After Canute's two sons had reigned in succession, the- 
crown was given to Edward, the Confessor, who had been 
educated in Normandy. He knew but little of the English 
Language, and despised it, while he encouraged the use of 
Norman-French at his Court, where Norman manners prevailed. 
Edward's reign was followed by the defeat of the English at 
the battle of Hastings. 

1100-1558. — The Norman Conquest confirmed the innova-^ 


tion in language that had been prevalent at the English 
Court during the reign of Edward, the Confessor. And the 
same event gave greater freedom to the analytical tendency 
that had, most probably, been active during the times of so- 
called ' Danish ' invasions. The English Language, left mostly 
to the care of the common people, lost, during the time 1100- 
1250, many of the inflexions belonging to the Oldest English, 
and changes in the order of words in sentences followed the 
loss of inflexions. 

Among the higher classes, English, for some time after the 
Conquest, was treated with contempt. Among other classes it 
was spoken with increasing neglect of its literary forms. The 
process of reducing the language from the synthetic to the 
analytic form, was accelerated by several results of the 
Conquest. Erench minstrels lived in England during the 
twelfth century, and Norman- French was established as the 
language of the Court and of all the upper ranks of society. 
Laws were promulgated in that language, and it was employed 
in the universities, in courts of law, and in Parliamentary 
records. The sons of gentlemen ' began their study of French 
in the nursery,^ and afterwards were taught to translate Latin 
into French. 

Still the common people held fast their own language, 
and, for a considerable space of time, it might be said truly 
that two peoples, speaking two languages, were living apart 
from each other in England. An old writer says : ' The 
Normans could speak nothing but their own tongue, and 
spoke French just as they did at home ; but the low people 
held to their English.' He adds words to the efiect that 
every man who would be esteemed respectable must study 

Then a long and quiet contest for the mastery took place 
between the two languages, and English was victorious. 

The loss of Normandy and the French wars of Edward III. 
aided in leading to this result. It was late when victory was 
formally proclaimed in high places. In 1349 boys ceased to 
learn Latin by means of translation into French. In 1362 


orders were issued by Parliament, that thenceforth pleadings 
in the law courts should be conducted in English. 

Meanwhile the language of the people had lost a great 
part of its inflexions and of the syntactical laws belonging to 
its early literature ; but its vocabulary was still rich in several 
departments, and in others the aid afforded by Norman-French 
was valuable. 

The Englishman held fast his old names for all that he 
knew of nature — such names as ' hill,' ' dale,' ' wood,' ' stream,' 
' field,' and ' orchard ; ' the names of materials for every-day 
use — ' loam,' ' earth,' ' sand,' ' stone,' ' wood ; ' the names of 
many plants and trees — 'oak,' * grass,' 'alder,' 'beech, 
'apple,' 'barley,' 'hawthorn,' and 'groundsel;' and many 
names of quadrupeds, birds, fishes, reptiles, and insects. He 
kept his own ready words for expressions of his sensations, 
and transitions in nature were still described by such words 
as ' blow,' ' shine,' ' flow,' ' slide,' ' glide,' ' rain,' and ' thunder.' 
He had, moreover, a good store of old names for the furniture 
of his house, and for implements used in farming, and not a 
few belonging to navigation; such as 'ship,' 'boat,' 'raft,' 
' oar,' ' sail,' ' mast,' ' helm,' ' rudder,' ' sound,' and ' sounding- 
line.' From Norman-French he borrowed, in the course of 
time, many terms belonging to architecture, armour, costume, 
the chase, and warfare. The new tongue supplied, moreover, 
some additions to the vocabulary of the larder. But English 
was chiefly indebted to Norman-French for new words be- 
longing to courts of law, or descriptive of feudal tenures, of 
rank in society, and of offices held under Government. 

Among the French words introduced soon after the Con- 
quest several were originally Teutonic ; for example, nearly all 
words beginning with ' gu ' were variations of Teutonic words 
beginning with ' w;.' 

In Grammar the old tongue maintained the mastery. We 
may partly ascribe to the Conquest the subsequent preva- 
lence of ' es ' as the suffix used to form the plurals of nouns. 
But this 'es' represented 'as,' one of the plural suffixes in 
the Oldest English. l,ts general use, as a substitute for other 


forms, was one of tlie changes gradually made in the conrse 
of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. 

These changes included also the following : — the article 
lost both gender and case ; the several declensions of nouns 
were reduced to one, and at last nouns lost all case-inflexions, 
save the possessive. The verbal noun lost, in the nominative, 
the suffix ' an,' and, in the dative, ' anne,' or ' enne ; ' the par- 
ticipial suffix ' ende ' (or 'inde ') was changed into ' Inge ' and 
*ing;' the prefix 'ge-' (or ' i-,' or 'y-'), used with verbs, 
was more and more restrictively used as a prefix to the perfect 
participle, and, at last, was used mostly as an archaism. 

These and other changes, leading to a general disuse of 
inflexions, were not made with equal speed in all the three 
dialects of Old English : — the Northern, the Midland, and the 
Southern. Of these the second was the most extensive, and, 
in the sixteenth century, assumed the character of Standard 

Orm, one of the earliest writers in the Midland dialect, 
was followed by Robert Manning (of Bourne, in Lincolnshire), 
and, in the latter half of the fourteenth century, by Wtcliffb, 
GowER, and Chaucer. One of the most important works of 
the fourteenth century is ' The Vision of William, concerniag 
Piers the Ploughman,' which was written by William Lang- 
land, in the time 1362-99. 

During the fifteenth century the course of transition in 
the forms of the English Language was accelerated by the 
introduction of printing. In the sixteenth century the lan- 
guage of GowER was called obsolete, and a special glossary 
was wanted for reading Chaucer. 

1558. — Modern English is not divided from Old English 
by any hard and precise line, but may be described as 
assuming a definite form about the time when Elizabeth 
began to reign. The poet Spenser may be classed with the 
early writers of Modern English, for his archaic forms were 
mostly chosen as harmonizing well with the tone of his 
poetry. But it would be no great error if the period of 
Modern English were defined so as to include Sir Thomas 


More's writings, Ttnd ale's translation of the New Testcrni&nt, 
and Ascham's ' Scholemaster.^ 

The most obvious distinctions of Kodern English are the 
following : — the establishment of the latest Midland dialect as 
Standard English ; greater regularity in Orthography, Syntax, 
and Prosody ; the predominance of the new (or ' weak ') 
conjugation of verbs ; the loss of many of the oldest English 
words, and the introduction of numerous words derived 
immediately from Latin. 

The introduction of Latin compounds has gradually led to 
the disuse of long compound words having English stems. 
In the earliest times English writers freely made use of long 
compound words belonging to several classes. After the 
Norman Conquest, and when the two languages, English and 
Old French, became more and more united, the convenience 
and elegance of Roman compounds were appreciated, and 
proportionately the formation of purely English compounds 
for the expression of abstract and complex notions fell 
gradually into disuse. But this change was by no means a 
regular and continuous progression. Some writers were 
mostly contented with the resources of their Old English 
vocabulary ; others liked to display their knowledge of Old 
(or Norman) French. Some were progressive, while others 
were conservative, with respect to their choice of diction. 
There existed, therefore (as an old author observes), such 
diversities of speech, that Englishmen of the fourteenth cen- 
tury might be described as divided rather than united by their 
language. To the thirteenth century belong such words as 
'adversity,' 'appurtenance,' 'continuance,' 'obedience,' and 
' transmigration.' Some prose writings of the fourteenth cen- 
tury have, when given with modern spelling, a considerablf) 
likeness to our composite style of the present time. But to 
the fourteenth century belong also such compounds as 
*unworship* (= dishonour), ' agenstonden ^ (= stand against 
= resist), and * again-hiyenge^ (= buying again = redemp- 
tion) . 

In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries numerous 


Latin compounds were introduced. Though good English 
prose was written bj several authors who lived during that 
time, there was in others a preference of Latin compounds 
that might be fairly called excessive. One of the lovers of 
Old English, fearing that his own tongue might soon become 
obsolete, wrote a tract for the purpose of showing that 
English, unaided by Latin, could supply forms of expression 
for all possible abstractor complex notions. His own practice 
did not serve to recommend his theory ; for, instead of using 
the word ' impervious,' he invented the cumbrous English 
compound ' un- through- fare-som.' 

The introduction of compound Latin words has not,, 
however, superseded all classes of English compounds. Old 
methods of forming compounds of one class are still retained 
in Modern English. Such compounds as '■faint-hearted ' and 
* high-minded ' belong to good English. The compound word 
^ handbook^ is correct and, with respect to structure, corre- 
sponds with the older word ' handiioorh,' which is not equi- 
valent to ' handy work.' [See § 34.] 

Of the advantages afforded by terms derived from Latin 
and Greek, when properly used in the treatment of abstract 
and scientific subjects, there can hardly exist a doubt. On 
the other side, one unfavourable result of our composite 
language, as spoken in the present time, is too important 
to be left unnoticed. The Latin part of the language, as 
abundantly used by lawyers, journalists, and politicians (and 
by too many preachers), is not thoroughly understood by the 
people. It is a mistake to suppose that any proportionately 
great number of Englishmen know the precise meanings of 
such words as 'abstract,' 'aggravate,' 'arbitrary,' 'ambi- 
guity,' ' comprehensive,' ' concatenation,' ' impertinent,' ' in- 
solent,' 'induction,' 'premisses,' and 'preposterous.' 

One effect of a predominant Latinized diction, used by the 
educated classes, is to place an intellectual barrier between 
them and ' the other classes of society.' There are two reme- 
dies for this evil : — Latin should not be used to say things 
that can be better said in E^iglish, and the meanings of Latin 


stems, etc., in all the derivatives and compounds generally 
used, should be tanght in our schools, at least as carefully as 
we teach English Spelling. 

Modern English is the language generally spoken in 
Great Britain, Ireland, the United States and British 
America, Australia, Tasmania and South Africa, in several of 
the West India Islands, and in some parts of New Zealand. 
It is partly spoken in several of the islands of Polynesia, and 
by some natives in certain districts of India. 

Among the German people of Central Europe the study of 
the English Language and its Literature has made great pro- 
gress during the present century. 

English and Roman words supply, as we have said, the 
two main elements of our language ; but it contains also words 
borrowed from the following languages : — 





Icelandic (or Old Norse) 



Cymraeg (Old). 


Cymraeg (Modern, called Welsh). 


Dutch (spoken in Holland). 


French (Modern). 


Greek (Ancient). 



Many names have been used in treating of English as 
variously written in the several periods of its history. 'Anglo- 
Saxon ' is a strange name for the First or Oldest English oi 
the time 450-1100. The name ' Semi-Saxon ' has been given 
to our language of the time 1050-1250. The name * Old Eng- 
lish ' has been used, with a narrow meaning, to denote the 
written language of the time 1250-1350, and writings of the 
time 1350-1558 have been described as belonging to the period 
of 'Middle English.' There is no good authority for these 
subdivisions made in the long transitional period 1100-1558. 
All that time may well be called the time of Second or Old 
English, and may be generally described as a period of transi- 
tion from synthetic to analytic forms. 

In writing about English, too many special names have 


been used, and they have served to make dim the trnth, that 
in England, from the time of Alfred to the present, one lan- 
guage has been always spoken hy the people. 

Alfred, in the ninth century, Langland, in the fourteenth, 
and BuNTAN, in the seventeenth — all wrote English. 

In the following pages the abbreviation E.I. means First 
English, or the Oldest EngHsh, of the time 450-1100. E.II. 
means Second English, or Old EngHsh — including all the 
transitional forms sometimes classified as belonging respec- 
tively to the ' three periods' called ' Semi- Saxon,' ' Old Eng- 
lish,' and * Middle English.' The abbreviation M.E. (for 
Modern English) is used with reference to all forms accepted 
as belonging to Standard EngHsh of the period extending 
jfrom the Elizabethan age to the present time. 



Orthographt means correct writing, which includes 
correct spelling. Orthoepy means correct pronunciation. 

In Greek, drthbs = correct ; grapho = I write ; i'po = I speak. 

In a work like the present, Orthography and Orthoepy mxist be briefly 
noticed, as subjects too extensive for any concise treatment, and as defying 
all attempts to reduce them to a series of rules. 

The Modem English Alphabet, as written and printed, 
contains only twenty-six letters : — 

abed efghij 


u V w X y z. 

These twenty-six leti^ere are divided into two classes : 
Vowels and Consonants. 

The vowels a, e, i, o, u — as heard in the words ' ah,' 
' met,' ' tin,' ' note,' ' rule ' — can be sounded without any 
aid derived from other letters. 

The letters w and y are called sem'i-vowels, but are 
sometimes used as consonants. 

When two vowels blend their sounds, and so produce 
a third sound, this third sound is a diphthong. Ex, : — 
ei (or ey) when sounded as in eye, 
oi (or oy) „ „ boy, 

exL (or ew) „ „ ewe, 

ou (or ow) „ „ house. 

These four are all the diphthongs found in English, There are no 
diphthongs in the words pair, fear, weigh, sew, and glow. There are no 
triphthongs in English. In the word beauty the sound of the three vowels 
eau = the sound of the diphthong in new. 

A Syllable is a sound produced by one impulse of 
the voice. A vowel or a diphthong, either with or with- 
out the aid of any other letter, can make a syllable. 

Ex. : The first syllable in a-fiUd and in ashore is a. 


A Consonant requires the aid of a vowel in order to 
make a syllable. 

*Pa' is a syllable; but p' represents merely a tight closing of the 

The power of a letter must be distinguished from its naTne. Take the 
word go. Let the sign A indicate the taking away of 0. Then g A can- 
not be pronounced. "We may call it *jee.' That is its name. But that 
does not express its power as used in the word go. 

Consonants are divided into the following classes : — 

Liquids : 1, m, n, r. 

Labials: p, b, f, v, w. 

Dentals : d, t, 1, n, j, s, z ; also the following letters, as somettTnes 
iised: — 

c, sounded as mface, or as in discern, or as in social; g, sounded as in 
aem ; r, sounded as in rose. 

G-TTTTUEALS : h, k, q, y ; also the following letters, as sometimes used : — 

C, sounded as in call ; g, sounded as in go ; r, sounded as in work. 

h is distinctly called the aspirate, and is otherwise called a weak 

Consonants have been thus classified with respect to the organs of 
speech. In Latin, labium = lip ; dens = tooth ; guttur = throat. The four 
letters 1, m, n, r, are called ' lAqnids' because their sounds readily unite 
with others. The letters having whispering or hissing sounds (s, z, j, with 
c and g, when used as dentals) are called ' Sibilants' 


The series of elementary sounds heard when English is 
correctly spoken, contains twelve vowels, four diphthongs, jwe 
labials, ten dentals, six gntturals, and/ot^r liquids. All these 
forty-one sounds are heard when the following seventeen words 
are correctly pronounced : — march, move, note, push, bud, 
vain, fear, wall, size, treasure, joy, thing, than, cube, get, 
house, yonder. 

The preceding seventeen words contain the forty-one sounds 
noticed in the following analysis : — 

Four sounds of a are heard in the words * map,' ' ah ! ' 
*pale,' 'call.' 

Two sounds of e are heard in ' met ' and ' feet.' 
The sound of the vowel i is heard in ' tin..' 
Three sounds of are heard in 'not,' 'note,' ' move.' 
Two sounds of U are heard in ' cup ' and ' pull.' 
The sounds oifour dvphthongs are heard in the words ' eye,* 
' boy,' ' ewe,' ' house.' 

The sounds of the four liquid consonants are heard in the 
words 'lane,' 'man,' 'name,' 'rose.' 



The sounds of the five lahial consonants are heard, as 
initials, in the words ' pin,' ' bee,' ' fan,' ' vain,' ' win.' 

The sounds of two dentals, t and d, are heard, witliout 
sibilation, in the words ' tin ' and ' din.' 

The sounds of three sibilant dentals are heard as initials in 
the words 'jest,' ' sin,' ' zeal.' 

The shar'p sound of the asjpirated sibilant ch is heard in 
' chest.' This sound is represented by the single letter c in 
the Italian words ' violoncello ' and ' vermicelli.' The same 
sound is represented by the single letter t in the word 
' question.' 

The sJiarj^ sound of the asjpirated sibilant sh is heard in 
' shall.' This sound is represented by c in ' social ; ' by s in 
* mansion ; ' by t in ' partial ; ' and by ch in ' charlatan.' 

The flat sound of the aspirated sibilant zh is represented 
by z in the word ' azure.' The same sound is represented by 
« in ' usual,' ' measure,' ' pleasure,' and ' treasure.' 

Two sounds of the aspirated dental th are heard in the 
words ' thin ' and ' thine.' The former is called sharp and the 
latter flat. 

The sounds of five gutturals — g", k, y, n, and r — are heard 
in the words ' go,' ' kind,' ' youth,' ' long,' ' work.' [n and r 
have other sounds, and are therefore also classed with liquids.] 

The sound of the aspirate (or weah guttural) h is heard in 

The results of the preceding analysis are concisely given 
in the appended table. 

In English the Spoken Alphabet contains : — 


pale,' 'call' 


' *boy,' 'ewe,' 'hour' 

vain, * win 

4 sounds of a in ' map,' 

2 sounds of e in ' met,' 
The sound of i in • tin ' 

3 sounds of in ' not,' 
2 sounds of U in * cup,' 

4 diphthongs in ' eye, 

4 liquids : 1, m, n, r . 

5 labials in ' pin,' ' bee,* ' fan,' 
2 dentals in ' tin ' and ' din ' , 

6 sibilant dentals in ' sin,' * zeal,' ' shall,' ' azure,' 
2 lisping dental sounds : th in ' think ' and th in 
5 gutturals in ' kind,' ' youth,' ' go,' * long,' ' work 
The aspirate, h, op weak guttural . 






If the obscure sound of u in * cur ' must be counted, then 
there are forty- two sounds in English. 

Sharp and Flat Sounds. — Two consonants, one sharp, the 



other flat, coming together, cannot be pronounced in one 
syllable. Both must be sTiarjp or both must be flat. Hence 
these three rules are deduced : — 

a. — When a noun ends with ^flat consonant, the sound of 
8, in the possessive case, is changed into the sound of z, as in 
the example 'the stag's antlers.' The letter z is seldom 
seen, but is often 'pronounced. 

i. — The same change takes place in forming the plural of 
a noun ending with a flat consonant. Ijx. : ' flags.' If we 
pronounced the S sJiarj), we should say ''flax.'' 

c. — When a verb ends with a sharp consonant, the ending 
ed, in the past, if contracted (as 'd), is pronounced as t. 
Ex. : ' bless'd '= ' hlest ; ' ' cross'd '= ' crost.' 

In the following table, the sharp sounds of consonants are placed in 
contrast with the flat : — 

p in pin 
f „ fan 



b in bee 
V „ vain 


t „ 


Slbilant Dentals. 




s „ 
sh „ 
ch „ 








Lisping Sounds. 

th „ 







k „ 





E.I. Vowels and Consonants. 

Vowels. — Each of the short vowels — a, e, i, o, n, y — has a 
corresponding long vowel. 




as in * map ' 


as in 'ah' 



'met; 'her' 





' tin ' 


as ee in 'feet ' 




as in * note ' 



'cwp; 'pull' 


as in * move ' 

y had, at first, a sound like n, but afterwards served as a 
substitute for i. 


Consonants. — The liquids — 1, m, n, r — are sounded as in 

Labials. — It seems probable that f, placed between vowels, 
had in some words the sound of v in M.E. A half-consonant 
sound of w (final) is supposed to have approached the sound 
of V in M.E. 

Dentals. — J? often represents sharp th (heard in ^ thin'). 
•8 often represents the flat th (heard in Hhine'). Of these 
two forms for our modem th^ the first (])) serves mostly as an 
initial; the second mostly as a mediate or a final letter. 
Ex. : Jjencan (= ' to think ') ; mirS (= ' mirth '). But the two 
letters are often used indifferently in E.I. MSS. A careless 
way of writing J) gave rise to the use of ' 7/e ' as a substitute 
for 'the.' 

Gutturals. — c = k (as in ' hind '). 

g, as an initial, is guttural, even before the vowels e and 
i, as it still remains in * get ' and ' give.' When placed be- 
tween any two of the vowels 8B, e, i, y, the guttui'al sound 
of g is weakened, and approaches the sound of y in ' i/e.* A 
weakened sound of g is in E.II. often represented by the 
letter 5. 

h initial is aspirated, as in * hand.' 

eg in sound = guttural gg. 

ch in E.II. takes the place of c in First English, and has 
the dental sound of ch in ' church.' 

In cs the C remains guttural. 

cw = qu. Ex. : cwellan = ' to quell.' 

sc = sk (as in ' askew '). 


There are only five vowels in the printed alphabet, but 
the English Language has twelve distinct vowel-sounds. 

More than twenty apparent diphthongs are used in writing 
English, while the spoken language has only four true diph- 

The want of harmony between words written and words 
spoken is as noticeable in the consonants as in the vowels. 

Two consonants are often used to represent the sound of 
one. Ex. : — 

The sound of gh in laugh = f. 

» S^ » ghost = g in go. 

I, ph „ j>hial = f. 


Two CONSONANTS are often placed together to represent a 
pecnliar sound not expressed by a single letter. Ex. : — 

ch, sounded as in chair. 

sh ,, „ ship. 

th „ „ thin. 

th „ „ hither. 

ng „ „ young. 

X consists of two letters written as one, and is equivalent 
to ks or to gz. In fox the x = ks. In exert the x = gz. 

q has no sound distinct from that of k ; C, in many words, 
is sounded as s, and in others as k. The soft (or dental) 
sound of g in ' gem ' is the sound of j in 'jest.' 


A syllable may consist of one vowel, or of one diphthong ; 
or may be formed by connecting a vowel or a diphthong with 
a consonant, or with several consonants. JSx. : ' a,' ' eye,' 
^ am,' ' our,' ' land,' 'joint.' 

In every case the syllable — either simple or complex in its 
sound — is produced by one impulse of the voice. 

The sounds of letters collected in a syllable are often 
modified by their union. Ex. : s in ' flags ' is not pronounced 
like s in ' stacks.' [See * 2, on ' Sharp and Flat Sounds.'] 

The following words are often used in writing of syllables 
and accentuation : — 

Monotone, one tone. 

M6nosyllahle, a word of one syllable. 

Dissyllable „ two syllables. 

Trisyllable „ three ,, 

Polysyllable . „ four or more syllables. 

Penultimate, the second syllable, as counted from the end 
of a word. 

Antepenultimate, the third syllable, as counted from the 
end of a word. 

*5. ACCENT. 

The stress laid on one syllable in a word, to give urdty to 
the word, is called the Accent. 

English contains, besides its store of original words, many 
Roman words — some taken from Norman-French, and others 
from Latin. 


OuE language, including these three classes of words, lias 
also three modes of placing the accent. 

These three modes maybe called the English, the Norman- 
French, and the Latin. 

All the three modes of placing the accent are still fairly represented in 
the language, as pronounced in the nineteenth century ; but the English 
mode prevails. By the use of accent unity is given to the elements of 
which a word is made. Let the two words how and string be pronounced 
in close succession, but in a sustained monotone. Then they cannot form 
the word bowstring. It is the accent that makes the two words one. 

In every word of two syllables, one syllable must be pro- 
nounced with an accent. There must not be two accents in a 

The apparent exception in * farewell ! ' is hardly worth notice. True, 
it is written as one word, but it is a sentence. 

Another exception, ' A'-m6n,' is pronounced in a monotone. 

The English principle of accentuation is to place the accent, 
in all simple words, on the most important syllable, or the 
stem, and this is generally the first syllable. 

The following words may serve as a few examples taken from dis- 
syllables : — father, mother, br6ther, sister, kindred, children, herdsman, 
ploQghman, weaver, baker, miller, meadow, water, morning, sunset, wonder, 
thunder, lightning, summer, winter, harvest, waggon, walking, riding, fish- 
ing, hunting, fighting, weapon, rudder, saddle, friendship, wisdom, worship. 
These are all words derived from the strong and graphic vocabulary used 
in England before the Conquest. 

In many words of two syllables the meaning may be 
changed by moving the accent from the first to the second 
syllable. Ex. : concert (noun) ; concert (verb). 

Thus, a compound is a mixture, and when we mix materials we com- 
pound them. A contrast implies a difference between two objects, and 
when we place them, so as to show their difference, we contrast them. 

The general tendency of the English language is to place 
the accent on the first syllable of a dissyllable. 

But many words derived from Norman-French, or from Latin, have the 
accent on the final syllable. The following are a few examples : — address, 
approve, austere, benign, delight, divine, excite, gazette, grotesque, impair, 
incite, polite, possess, superb. 

The general tendency of the English language is to place 
the accent on the first syllable of a trisyllable, as in the 
words : fellowship, follower, happiness, bdundary, capital, 
dutiful, beautiful. 

In Latin words of three syllables, when the penultimate 


syllable and the final are long, the penultimate has the acnte 
accent, as in dixerunt. 

When the pennltimate is short, and the final is long, the 
acute accent falls upon the antepenultimate, as in dicerent. 

In some words borrowed from Latin the English accentuation accords 
with the Latin ; but in many other words the English departs from the 
Latin accentuation, and places the accent on the first of three syllables. 

The following words are examples of polysyllables having the accent on 
the first syllable : — ceremony, literature, mercenary, parsimony, castigatory. 

To facilitate pronunciation many polysyllables have a secondary accent, 
which must be divided from the primary by the interposition of, at least, 
one syllable. 

In the following examples the primary accent is printed as if doubled : — 
administrative, castigatory, heterogeneous, hypochondriacal, irascibility, 

Words ending in Ian, or ion, or lor, have the accent on the 
preceding syllable ; as in barbarian, musician, physician, ad- 
miration, coronation, opinion, inferior, superior. . . . The 
same rule is followed in words ending in ious, eous, or lioiis. 

Bx. : laborious, erroneous, impetuous. 

Words having i-ty, or i-tude, or er-y, as the last two 
syllables, have the accent on the antepemdtimate : — diversity, 
beatitude, machinery. 


In writing the division of a word should be, as far as 
possible, avoided. 

Two vowels having distinct sounds may be separated : — 

One consonant placed between two vowels may be con- 
nected with the latter, if the former is long : — pa-per. 

Two consonants placed between two vowels may be sepa- 
rated : — man-ner. 

Where two vowels are separated by three consonants, two 
consonants may be connected with the latter vowel: — 

A compound word may be divided into its parts. Ex. : palm-tree. 

The rule ' that prefixes and suffixes may be separated,' cannot be under- 
stood until the student shall have acquired some knowledge of the structure 
of words. The following are examples of this rule : — ' pre-fix,' ' post-pone,' 

* mis-rule,' 'dark-ness,' ' improve-ment,' 'bond-age,' *refer-ence,' 'depart- 
ure,' ' qual-ity,' ' na-tion,' ' fool-ish,' ' heark-en,' ' pun-ish,' ' depart-ed,' 

• depart-ing.' [See % 41.] 




The second part of Grrammar is called Etymology, 
and, when strictly defined, means discourse respecting 
the original forms of words. 

In Greek, logos = ' discourse ; ' etymon = * true origin of a word.* 

Less strictly defined, Etymology is a part of Grammar 
including three divisions. 

Of these the first gives a Classification of Words 
considered as parts of speech, or with respect to their 
several uses in the construction of sentences. To the 
second belongs the treatment of changes of form called 
Inflexions. The third treats of the Derivation and the 
Composition of Words. 

In the present treatise all the sections 7-40 belong to 

As words must be classified with respect to their several 
uses in the construction of sentences, we must first know 
what a sentence is. 

Every Sentence like that to which the letter A is here 
prefixed tells something. 

A. — ' DayHght appears.' 

Here ' daylight ' is a noun, or a name. A name of any- 
thing that exists, or of which we have any notion, is in Gram- 
mar called a noun. The word ' day ' is a noun, and ' light * 
is a noun. When placed together, as they are in ' daylight,* 
they make a compound word, which is also a noun. 

The word ' appears ' is a verb, which tells something of 
' daylight.' The verb is the word that tells, asserts, or declares 

A is a complete sentence, though it contains only two 
words. It is a simple sentence, not because it is short, but 
because it contains only one verb. The noun is called the suh- 
jectj because it is the word of which the verb, chiefly and in 
the first place, tells something. 

Every sentence must contain a noun (or a word equiva- 
lent to a noun), and must contain a verb. To each of these 


two parts of speecli a word may be added to define moro 
closely the meaning. 

B. — ' Clear daylight suddenly appears.' 

We speak of ' daylight ' as of sfTinething having an inde- 
pendent existence. The appearance must have a cause ; but 
to this we do not refer when we simply use the word ' day- 
light ' as a noun. We speak of it as having an independent 
existence. But we do not, in the same way, employ the word 

* clear.' 

' Clear ' is an attributive word, belongs to ' daylight,' and 
serves to define that noun. 

Attributive words are called adjectives, because they are 
placed beside nouns, and belong to nouns. 

The word ' clear ' is an adjective, and ' bright ' is another 
word of the same class. 

' Suddenly ' defines the verb 'appears.' The verb tells that 
an act takes place, and the word ' suddenly ' defines the man- 
ner of the act. A word thus serving to define the act ex- 
pressed by a verb is called an adverb. 

An adverb may define an act with respect to jplace or to 
time. But we may think of an act as extending to a certain 
degree, as dependent on a cause, as done in a certain manner, 
or as attended with certain circumstances. In any one of 
these respects an adverb may define a verb. This is the chief 
use of the adverb ; but it may serve also to define an adjective, 
and one adverb may define another. Adverbs define the uses 
of attributive words. 

C. — ' Clear daylight bright-en-s the stream.' 

The form in which the verb ' brightens ' is printed shows 
that it contains an adjective — ' bright ' — and is therefore an 
attributive word ; but it is more than that, for it tells or asserts 
that an act takes place, and that the source or immediate 
cause of the act is ' daylight.' 

The verb ' brightens ' combines an attribute with an assertion, 
and, in meaning, is equivalent to the two words 'makes bright.' 

A verb that combines an attribute with an assertion is 
called a concrete verb. 

The abstract verb ' be ' is so called because it can assert 
nothing more than existence. The words ' daylight is ' can tell 
us nothing without the addition of an attributive word like 

* clear.' 

The importance of the distinction here made between the 
the abstract verb be and all concrete verbs will be shown in 
the ' Analysis of Sentences.' 


A concrete verb is also called & predicative verb. 

The two words ' appears ' and ' brightens' are both verbs ; 
but in the two sentences A and C the verbs have, in one re- 
spect, different uses. Each tells us that an act takes place ; 
but the verb ' appears ' concludes a sentence and tells nothing 
of any effect. The verb ' brightens ' may be used in the same 
manner as when we say, ' The day brightens.' But it is not 
so used in the sentence C, where the word ' stream ' follows. 

The verb in C serves to express an act that passes on and 
makes some change or transition in an object. 

The word ' brightens ' is here called a transitive verb. 
The verb ' appears ' is called intransitive. 

The word ' the,' in its original meaning, is equivalent to- 
' that,' and ' that ' may be used to define a noun, though not 
with respect to any inherent quality. 

The word ' stream ' — like the word ' daylight ' — is a noun ; 
but these two nouns have distiuct uses in the sentence C. 
The first noun denotes the source of the act by which a 
change is made in the * stream,' denoted by the second noun. 
The first noun is used as the Subject of the Sentence. The 
second noun is used as the Object following a transitive verb. 

D. — ' Clear daylight brightens the wind-ing stream.' 

The form in which the adjective ' winding ' is here 
printed shows that it belongs — with respect to its source — to 
the verb ' wind ; but ' winding,' as used in D, is an attributive 
word, serving to define the noun ' stream.' 

Many words ending in ing are used sometimes as nouns 
and sometimes as adjectives. 

' Winding ' is here used as an adjective. 

In numerous cases we have no single word by which we 
can give to a noun the required definition. We therefore use 
two or three words, of which one is called a preposition, and 
two or three words placed together make a phrase. 

E. — * Clear daylight brightens the winding stream in the 

The last three words in the sentence E make a phrase, and 
' m ' is the preposition. 

The word ' dale ' is a noun, and, with respect to its use, is 
dependent on the preposition * in.' We therefore call ' dale,' 
placed as we find it in E, a dependent noun. It serves neither 
as the subject nor as the object, but as part of a prepositional 
phrase J which is used to supply the want of a suitable adjective. 
With respect to its formation, it is called prepositional, but> 
with respect to its use, it is called an adjective phrase. 


Many prepositional phrases are used as adverbs. 

F. — 'Daylight suddenly appears, and it brightens the 
winding stream in the dale.' 

The word it is a pronoun, and serves to prevent a repeti- 
tion of the noun ' daylight.' ' A pronoun is a word used 
instead of a noun.' 

Two sentences — the first beginning with the noun ' day- 
light,' the second with the pronoun — are connected by the 
word ' and.' A word used to connect two sentences is called a 

Both Nouns and Pronouns are called Substantive Words. 
They denote things existing, or supposed to exist. 

Adjectives and Adverbs are called Attributive Words. 

The verb combines an attribute with an assertion. Ex. : 
* bright-ens.' 

The chief words are the Noun, the Pronoun, the Adjective, 
and the Verb. The other parts of speech — the Adverb, the 
Preposition, the Conjunction, and the Interjection — are some- 
times called Particles. 

With the chief words — without the aid of Particles — we 
can form sentences. C may serve as an example. 

The elements of which sentences consist may be expanded 
with respect to their forms. Several words may be used 
instead of a noun, or instead of an adjective. But, with re- 
spect to their several uses, the parts of a sentence — whatever 
their forms may be — must serve as nouns, adjectives, verbs, 
and adverbs. 

In writing or speaking of separate words, or syllables, or 
letters, they are treated as nouns. 

Ex. : The word ' and ' serves to connect sentences, and 
sometimes connects words. 

ion serves as the ending of many nouns. 

a is a vowel. 

In the following notes on the parts of speech no attempt is 
made to give complete definitions. 

There are eight parts of speech : — 









The first four are the Chief Words in Sentences ; the 
others are called Particles. 


When English words are divided into mrie classes, the two 
adjectives *an' (or *a') and *the' are placed apart from 
other adjectives, and are called * Articles.' 

A Noun is a word used as a name. 

Any Noun may be made the Subject of a Sentence, No 
Sentence can be made without the aid of a Noun or a 

A Pronoun is a word used instead of a Noun. 

Pronouns are too often and too carelessly used instead of 

A word that in one place stands instead of a Noun may, 
in another place, be used with a Noun, and is then called an 

An Adjective is a word used to define a Noun. 

An Adjective may be used to denote — 

quaHty ; Ex. : ha/rd rocks 
quantity „ much com 
number „ jive bells 

order ; Ex. : third class 
identity „ this man 
possession „ my watch 

Some writers define Adjectives as words added to Nouns, 
in order ' to denote their qualities.^ 

Other words that define Nouns — though not with respect 
to their qualities — have been called ' Adjective- Pronouns,' 
which (it is said) * are of a mixed nature.' One name may 
be given to a word with respect to its origin, and another 
with respect to its use in a sentence ; but the two names 
should be kept apart. My — one of the words called ' Adjective- 
Pronouns ' — is a form of mm, which in E.I. is a Pronoun ; 
but in M.E. the word my is never ' used instead of a Noun.' 
{See § 9.] 

A Verb is a word that, when rightly placed in con- 
nexion with a Noun or a Pronoun, tells something. 

Every Concrete Verb (like 'brighten') tells something 
that is distinct. The Abstract Verb be asserts nothing more 
than existence. 

An Adverb is a word used to define an act expressed 
by a Verb. 

This is the chief use of the Adverb; but it may also 
serve to define an Adjective or an Adverb. 


A Preposition is a word placed before a Noun or a 
Pronoun, to show its relation to some preceding word. 

A Conjunction is a word that connects with each 
other two sentences, or two phrases, or two words. 

An Interjection is a word used to express some 
emotion. Ex. : ' Oh ! ' 

Parsing shows the parts of speech of which a given 
sentence consists. 

In the simplest mode of Parsing, the words in a given 
sentence are classified with respect to tlieir several uses. An 
example is appended : — 

Classify the words used in the following sentences : — ' The 
clear light of sunrise shines over the ridge of the monntaia, 
and brightens the ripphng streams in the valley. They glitter 
in the radiance of the morning.' 


Nouns. — 'Light,' 'sunrise,' 'ridge,' 'mountain,' 'streams/ 
' valley,' ' radiance,' ' morning.' Peonoun. — ' They.' 
Adjectives. — ' The,' ' clear,' ' rippling.' 
Verbs. — ' Shines,' ' brightens,' ' glitter.' 
Prepositions. — ' Of,' ' over,' ' in.' 
Conjunction. — ' And.' 

8. NOUNS. 

The two main divisions of Nouns are called Concrete 
and Abstract. 

Concrete Nouns are names of real objects, including 
persons, animals, plants, and things called inanimate. 
Ex. : ' man,' ' sailor,' ' lion,' ' tree,' ' rose,' ' rock,' ' clay,' 
' water.' 

Abstract Nouns are names of general notions. Ex. i 
'truth,' 'justice,' 'whiteness.' 

Old English Nouns include a large number of concrete 
nouns, and as almost all the pronouns and the particles in 
our language and numerous adjectives and verbs belong to 
Old Enghsh, we can write and speak of realities, or the 
objects of sense, and generally of any common affairs of 
Hfe, without using any words borrowed from Latin. The 
following quotation, which does not contain one word bor- 

NOUNS. 33 

rowed from Latin or from Frencli, may be given as an ex- 
ample : — ' The Englishman's herds, still grazing in his fields 
and meadows, gave him milk and bntter, meat and wool ; the 
herdsman watched them in the spring and summer; the 
ploughman drew his furrows; the reaper plied his scythe, 
piled up sheaves, and hauled his wheat, oats, and rye to the 

Abstract Nouns in Old English were sometimes formed by 
the aid of the final syllables (or suffixes) dom, had, nes, 
scipe, and others, of which modern forms are still used — ' dom,* 
'hood,' 'ness,' 'ship,' etc. But in general our Old English 
nouns are concrete, or serve as names of real objects, and 
our more convenient forms of abstract nouns are borrowed 
from Latin. [/See § 40.] 

Concrete Nouns belong respectively to the following 
classes : — 

Proper Names, or names appropriated to individuals, 
either persons or places : — ' Harold,' ' Hastings.' 

Class Names, or names common to many objects 
belonging to one kind : — ' rock,' ' tree,' ' river,' ' man.' 

Collective Names, OY names of several or many objects, 
collected and viewed as a whole : — ' crowd,' ' flock,' 
' herd,' ' army.' 

Names of Materials, or substances of which things 
are made : — ' gold,' ' iron,' ' silver,' wool.' 

Abstract Nouns belong respectively to the following 
classes : — 

Names of Qualities, viewed apart from substances 
and existing only as notions : — ' youth,' ' beauty,' ' kind- 

Names of States, or modes of existence, and names of 
periods : — ' rest,' ' life-time.' 

Names of Actions, viewed apart from agents : — 
' living,' ' growing,' ' growth.' 

Verbal Nouns. — Many Verbal Nouns, or names of actions, 
have in M.E. the ending ing, which takes the place of ende 
and inde, or (in one dialect) ande, in E.I. and E.II. But 
many words having the ending ing are commonly used as 
adjectives. Nouns of this form are called Verbal Nouns, 
and adjectives having the same form are called Verbal 
Adjectives. Of the nouns ending in ing some represent 




E.I. nouns formed from verbs, and having the ending ung 
or ing. Whatever its origin may be, a M.E. word having the 
ending ing is classified with respect to its uses in the con- 
struction of sentences, and is called respectively a noun or an 

The following sentences contain examples of verbal 
nouns : — ' Walking is good exercise.' ' He teaches writing.' 

* You have won the prize for drawing.' 

' To write ' is a verbal noun. Ex. : ' He is learning to 

Various Uses of one Word. — A word mostly used as 
a noun may, without any change of form, be transferred to 
another class. 

The transfer may be permanent, or may be occasional. 
Thus the noun ceap (= a bargain) is obsolete, and 'cheap' 
is an adjective ; but such words as ' gold ' and ' silver ' may 
be employed, sometimes as nouns, sometimes as adjectives. 

Many words used as nouns are also used as verbs. Ex. : 

* dawn,' ' hand,' ' land,' ' mind,' ' sail,' ' sound.' 

A word mostly serving as a noun takes sometimes the 
place of an adverb. Ex. : ' He went home.' 

An abstract noun may be made concrete. Ex. : ' This is 
a fine building ' (i.e. a house). 

A proper noun may be made common. Ex. : ' He is not 
•a Milton ' (i.e. a poet like Milton). 

A common noun may become a proper noun. Ex. : ' The 
Prince ' (of Wales being understood). 


* Pronouns are words of which the original forms belong 
to E.I. 

In some examples these forms have been changed more or 
less, as the following table may show. Some variations of 
forms belonging to E.II. are placed in curves. 





ic (ich, I) 












]>U (|)0U) 






50 (ye, yee) 







eow (ow, yon) 



he (a) 



hine (him) 



heo (scho, she) 



hire (hir) ■ 



hit (hyt) 



pa (pei, thaie) 

they . 


min (mine) 

rmne {my) 


ure (oure) 



pin (pine) 

thine {thy) 


euwer (yonre) 



pare (peire) 


]>e pat) 

pe (pat) 

the, that 

wha (who) 



hwon (wham, whom) 



sum (som) 



feawe (fewe) 



senij (ani, oni) 



ilk (elch, aech) 



seit^er (ather, either) 



nather (neither) 



The general likeness of pronominal forms in E.I. and 
M.E. is made evident by the table. But while the words re- 
main, their uses have, in many instances, been changed. The 
words 'mine' and 'thine' are still used as pronouns {ov instead 
of nouns), but only to denote possession. The words ' like 
thine ^ now mean 'like something belonging to thee,' as when 
we say 'kindness like thine.^ But in E.I. the words pm 
gelica = ' like thee,' or ' like thyself.' 

In M.E. the words 'my,' 'thy,' 'her,' 'our,' and 'their' 
are always used with nouns (or as adjectives), and for possessive 
pronouns the words ' mine,' ' hers,' ' ours,' and ' theirs ' are 

In M.E. * who ' is used in asking questions ; but it is also 
used as a relative pronoun, and often takes the place of the 
older word pe (= ' that '), which in E.I. served as a demon- 
strative pronoun, and also to supply the want of a distinct 
relative form. 

Variations of uses in Pronouns have arisen from the 
vague nature of the words so named. While they are used 
as substitutes for nouns, they serve also to some extent to 
define nouns, though not with respect to quality. Pronouns, 
like nouns, denote persons and things. But words used as 

D 2 


Prononns (such as ' this ' and ' that ') are to some extent 
like adjectives, and serve to define or point out nouns. 

The position of some Pronouns, thus placed between twa 
other parts of speech, has given rise to the name ' Adjective- 
Peonouns,' which has been employed to indicate, at once, the 
original forms and the modern uses of such words as 'my,* 
' your,' and ' their.' 

Some Pronouns have become more and more like nouns ; 
others have been virtually transferred to the class of adjectives. 
The general result of the process is that several words — 
such as 'my,' 'thy,' 'her,' 'our,' 'your,' and 'their' — may 
still be called pronouns,' if we are speaking of their origin 
and their forms. But the same words, when considered with 
reference to their uses, in the construction of sentences, must 
be called Adjectives ; for they are always connected with 
nouns, and serve to make more definite the meanings of 
nouns. In the words 'your book,' ^your' tells nothing of 
any quality belonging to the book, but serves, nevertheless, 
to define or limit the meaning of the word ' book.' ' Your ' 
is, with respect to origin, a pronoun, but in M.E. is always 
used as an adjective. 

Pronouns are divided into six classes : — 

Personal Pronouns are used instead of names of 
persons. Ex. : ' he,' ' you,' ' they.' 

Possessive Pronouns are used instead of names of 
owners. Ex. : ' ours,' ' yours,' ' theirs.' 

Demonstrative Pronouns point out persons, etc. Ex. : 
'this,' 'that,' 'these,' 'those.' 

Interrogative Pronouns are used in asking questions. 
Ex.'. 'who? "which? "what?' 

Relative Pronouns define preceding nouns and con- 
nect sentences. Ex. : ' who,' ' which,' ' that.' 

Indefinite Pronouns are more correctly described as 
comparatively indefinite. Nearly all the words of this 
class are used sometimes instead of nouns and sometimes 
with nouns following. Ex. : ' some,' ' few,' ' each,' ' either,' 
' neither.' 

Personal Pronouns have forms appropriate to the 
First Person — the person who is speaking of himself 
alone, or of himself as one of two or more : — ' I,' ' me/ 
' we ' ' us,' ' myself,' ' ourselves.' 


The forms for the Second Person are appropriate to 
the person or the persons spoken to : — ' thou,' ' thee,' ' ye,' 
' you,' ' thyself,' ' yourselves.' 

The forms for the Third Person are respectively used 
in speaking of a person, or of two or more persons, or in 
speaking of any object, or of several objects : — ' he,' ' him,' 
' she," her," it,' 'they,' 'them,' 'himself,' 'herself,' 'it- 
self,' ' themselves.' 

It may for a moment seem incorrect to place * it ' with 
personal pronouns ; but 'ifc' is often nsed to denote persons. 
Ex. : ' It is J.' The nses of this pronoun ('^^) are extensive, 
as will be shown in Syntax. ' It ' often denotes an unnamed 
agent, or agency, as when we say ' It rains,' or ' It was 
freezing last night.' In many sentences the pronoun ' it ' 
serves to introduce a noun. Ex. : ' It is the rain that makes 
the grass grow.' 

The compound personal pronouns — 'myself,' ' thyself,' 

* himself — are formed by adding ' se^/' (an adjective in 
E.I.) to a pronoun, in order to give more force to its 
meaning, or to denote that the act expressed by a verb 
takes effect on the agent. Ex. : ' He himself stepped 
forward, and he defended himself.' 

The word ^ self is frequently and correctly used as a 
noun. Ex. : ' To thine own self be true ! ' (Shakespeaee.) 

Possessive Pronouns have some forms (a) always 
used instead of nouns, and others (h) sometimes used in- 
stead of nouns. 

Ex, (a) : ' hers,' ' ours,' ' yours,' ' theirs,' are used 
instead of nouns. 

Ex. (6) : ' mine,' ' thine,' his,' are sometimes used 
instead of nouns, and are sometimes used with nouns. 

The words ' my,' ' thy,' ' her,' ' our,' ' your,' ' their,' 
are all modem forms of E.I. pronouns, but are now 
always used with nouns. Any one of these words may 
be followed by the adjective ' own,^ which gives emphasis 
to the word denoting possession. The word ' its ' (which 
did not exist in E.I.) is here classified with the forms 

* my,' ' thy,' ' our,' etc. 


Demonstrative Pronouns have the forms ' this,' ' that,' 
'these,' 'those,' which are used sometimes with nouns and 
sometimes instead of nouns. 

' Yon ' and ' yonder ' are used as adjectives (mostly by- 
writers of verse). 'Yonder' may be used as an adverb. 
Tn E.I. the form geond (= 'there' or 'throngh') served as 
an adverb, and as a preposition ; but in E.II. the forms ' yone ' 
and ' yond ' are employed as adjectives, as ' yon ' and 
' yonder ' are still used by modern authors, but mostly in 

Interrogative Pronouns have forms used instead of 
nouns, and others that may be used with nouns. 
Ex. (a) : ' who ? ' ' whom ? ' ' whoever ? ' 
Ex. (b) ; ' whose ? ' ' which ? ' ' what ? ' 

' Whether^ (= which of two) is obsolete as an adjeetivd, but^-serves as a 
pronoun, [See Matth. xxi. 31 ; xxiii, 19, and Acts i. 24.] 

Eelative Pronouns have the forms ' who,' ' whose,' 
'whom,' 'which,' 'that,' 'what.' The words 'as' and 
' but ' are sometimes used with a relative meaning. 

\Who.' The extensive use of this relative pronoun is 
modern. The oldest relative pronoun is ' that.^ In M.E. 
' who ' refers to persons ; ' which ' to animals and inanimate 
objects ; ' that ' to both personal and impersonal names. These 
distinct uses are modem. 

' Whose,' the possessive form of ' who,' is followed by a 
noun ; but is found without a noun following in the Bible. 
(RoTTh. ix. 5.) 

The rule, that ' whose ' must refer to persons, is not old, 
and is not observed in poetry. 

Ex. : ' groves, whose shadows.' (Shakespeare.) 

' WJiich ' in E.II. is freely employed with reference to 
persons, and is often preceded by the adjective ' the.' 

' That,' serving often as a relative pronoun, has not yet 
lost its original demonstrative meaning, but has often a defini- 
tive and restrictive use, by which it is made distinct from 
^who ' and from ' which.' 

Ex. (a) : ' Here comes the man that will tell us the 

Ex. (6) : ' Here comes a native, who may give us aid.' 

Ex. (c) : ' Here comes a native, and he may give us aid.' 

In any sentence where the words ' and he ' may without 


loss of meaning take the place of the relative pronoun, the 
definitive use of ' that ' is not required. 

E.I. had no distinct forms for relative pronouns. The 
want was supplied in four ways : — 1 . By using with a relative 
meaning the demonstrative pronoun se, seo, fat (= 'that'). 
2. By using alone the pronoun fe (= *that'). 3. By placing 
}>e before a personal pronoun. 4. By placing J>e after a de- 
monstrative pronoun. 

' ^4s,' when it follows the word ' sucli,^ may have the use 
of a relative pronoun. JSx. : ' such reading as was never read.' 

' But ' is sometimes used as in meaning equivalent to 
'that' . . . 'not' 

Ex. : ' There's not the smallest orb 

But, in his motion, like an angel sings,' — SifAKESPEARE. 

Here the construction ' but . . . sings ' = ' that does 
not sing.' 

' What ' is, in meaning, equivalent to ' that which.' 

Indefinite Pronouns. — The following words, called ' in- 
definite pronouns,' are used sometimes instead of nouns, 
and sometimes with nouns following. In the latter case, 
these words should be called adjectives. 

' AH,' ' another,' ' any,' ' each,' ' either,' ' neither,* 
' enough,' ' few,' ' many,' ' one,' ' several,' ' some,' ' such.' 

' Other is mostly used as an adjective ; but * others ' may 
take the place of a noun. 

' Each other ' and ' one another ' are the forms placed after 
verbs intended to denote reciprocal acts, or those acts in which 
the agent and the object change places. 

The following words, sometimes classed with 'inde- 
finite pronouns,' are used as nouns, or instead of nouns : — 
'aught' (or 'ought'), 'naught' (or 'nought'), 'none,' 
' nobody,' ' nothing.' 


Adjectives are words used to define Nouns with respect 
to quality, quantity, number, order, identity, and posses- 



Some Adjectives are comparatively Indefinite. Ex. : 
' several persons,' ' any person.' 

The adjective ^several' is not definite like tlie numeral 
adjective ^Jive.^ 

Qualities ascribed to natural objects are denoted by 
such adjectives as 'hard,' 'hot,' 'cold,' 'bright,' ' swift.' 

Qualities ascribed to persons are denoted by such 
adjectives as 'generous,' 'truthful,' 'faithful.' 

One adjective may serve to denote either a natural or a 
moral quality. Ex. : ' hard,' ' cold,' ' firm,' ' steady,' ' good,' 

Quantity, without any exact definition, is denoted by 
such adjectives as ' much,' 'little,' ' more,' 'less.' 

Numbers are denoted by the adjectives called Numeral, 
which may be divided into three classes : Cardinal 
Numerals, Ordinal Numerals, and Multiple Numerals. 

Cardinal Numerals show how many objects are 
named. Ex. : ' two roses,' 'fi,ve bells,' ' twenty men.' 

* In the appended table many variations of form found in 
E.II. are omitted. 






an, on, one 



twegen (twa) 

twein, twei, two 

two (' twain ' 
is obsolete) 



))reo, J)re 



fower, four 




fif, five 




syxe, sexe 




seoven, seven 




ehte, aght 




nihen, niene 




tene, ten 




elleve, ellevene 




twelf, tweolve 



































































The words ' score,' ' hundred,' ' thousand,' are nouns ; 
* million,' ' billion,' ' trillion,' etc., are nouns borrowed from 

The noun ' score ' takes s to make a plural form, when no 
numeral precedes ; but, when following a numeral, ' score ' 
requires no change. 

Ux. : ' You may count them hy scores.' ' Threescore years.' 

Ordinal Numerals serve to show the order of parts 
belonging to a series. Ex, : ' The fifth chapter in the 
second book.' 

English ordinal forms are mostly derived from the cardinal 
by adding th, pronounced as in * thin.' ' Second ' is a word 
borrowed from French. 

In giving names to fractions (in arithmetic) ordinal 
numerals serve as nouns. JSx. : ' Two thirds of three fourths 
= one half.' 

*In the appended table some variations found in E.II. are 










ofer, seconde 




















sevenfe (etc.) 




eghte, &itpe 




ninj)e (etc.) 




teon|)e, tenj^e 




endlefte, eleventhe 




tweolfte, twelfthe 




prettende (etc.) 























fourte]?e (etc.) 


fifte|)e (etc.) 


sixte|7e (etc.) 












A Multiple Numeral serves to define a complex 
whole, with respect to the number of its parts. (Ex. I.) 

A Multiple Numeral may serre as an adverb to denote a 
rate of increase. (Ex. II.) 

Ex. (1.) : ' A threefold cord.' (II.); ' Other seeds brought 
forth fruit . . . some sixty fold, some thirtyfold.' 

A Multiple Numeral is formed by adding the syllable 
fold to an English stem, or ble or pie to a Latin stem. 
Ex. : 'twofold,' 'threefold,' 'double,' 'triple' (or 'treble'), 
' fourfold,' ' quadruple.' 

Identity is denoted by the demonstrative adjectives, 
' this,' ' that,' ' these,' 'those,' and ' the.' 

* This ' and ' that,' with their plural forms * these ' and 
' those,' are often used to define nouns, and are also used as 
Pronouns, or instead of nouns. The so-called ' definite article ' 
* the ' often serves as a weakened expression for * that,' and 
when followed by the word ' same ' is clearly demonstrative. 
The demonstrative adjectives ' yon ' and ' yonder ' are mostly 
used in poetry. 

The form of the ' definite article ' belongs to J?e, which in 
E.I. served as a substitute for the demonstrative pronoun se. 
The neuter form }>at was in E.II. used as a demonstrative 

Possession is denoted by the words ' my,' ' thy,' ' her,' 
' its,' ' our,' ' your,' ' their,' which are always used with 
nouns, and by ' mine,' ' thine,' and ' his,' which may be 
used either as adjectives or as pronouns. 

The adjective ' own ' following a possessive adjective 
serves to strengthen its meaning. 

Indefinite Adjectives. — Of the following words all — 


except two — may be used as pronouns: — 'all,' 'cm' (or 
' a '), ' another,' ' any,' ' each,' ' either,' ' neither,' ' enough,' 
' every ^^ ' few,' ' many,' ' several,' ' some,' ' such.' 

The two words not used as pronouns are ' ati ' (or ' a ') 
and ' every ^ 

* An ' (called * the indefinite article') is changed to 'a' 
before a consonant, and before words apparently beginning 
with the vowels o and w, but having the initial consonant 
sounds of w and y. Ex. : ' a book,' ' a house,' * such a one,* 
' a union.' 

* An ' — identical with the E.I. numeral an (= one) — was 
in E.II. sometimes reduced to the form o, while retaining its 
original meaning. (Ex. I.) 

In E.II. the word ' everich ' (* every,' etc.} was sometimes 
used as a pronoun. (Ex. II.) In M.E. ' every ' is always 
"used as an adjective. (Ex. III.) 

Ex. 1. 'Of o wH' (= of one will). * Of o body' (= of 
one body). 

Ex. II. 'That every schuld an hundred knightes bring.' 

Ex. III. ' Every tree is refreshed by the rain.' 

Verbal Adjectives. — Forms of verbs called Participles, 
having the endings ing, ed, en, etc., are often used as 
Adjectives, and are sometimes placed before nouns. Ex. : 
' a persevering man,' ' furnished rooms,' ' well-bound 
volumes,' ' a broken vow,' ' a forgotten promise.' 

It is not said that any participle may be treated as an 
adjective and placed before a noun. In placing participles, 
respect must be paid to usage. We say ' the parcel was 
brought ; ' ' the news was heard and believed.' But these par- 
ticiples (printed in Italic) are seldom or never placed before 

It must not be supposed that all adjectives ending in ed 
are verbal forms. In some compound words, nouns are con- 
verted into adjectives by the addition of the ending ed. Ex. : 

* high-minded,' ' open-hearted.' 

Various Uses. — Some words that serve as adjectives 
may, without any change of form, serve also as nouns. 
Ex. : ' the English,' ' the Chinese,' ' the rich,' ' the poor,'' 

* the village green.' 


Some adjectives are, by adding s, changed to nouns in 
the plural number. Ex. : ' greens,' ' natives,' ' mortals.' 

Some words often serving as adjectives serve also as 
verbs. Ex, : ' level,' open,' ' warm.' 

Some words are, without change of form, employed 
either as adjectives or as adverbs. Ex. : ' late,' ' long,' 
' still.' 

11. VERBS. 

A Verb has already been defined as a word that, when 
rightly placed with a noun or pronoun, can tell, assert, or 
declare something. 

This general definition has no reference to the abstract 
verb be. That must be considered apart from all other verbs, 
which are sometimes called ' concrete,' because they can 
assert something more than ' being ' or ' existence.' [/See 

An Intransitive Verb denotes an act that does not 
pass on from the agent (or the cause), so as to affect an 
object. Ex. : ' The tree falls.^ ' The man calls loudly.' 
^ The boy sleeps.'' 

A Transitive Verb denotes a transition of force, which 
may be real or supposed. Ex. : ' He felled the tree.' 
' He spoke the word.' 

A Passive Verb denotes that the subject of which we 
speak receives or endures the effect of an act. Ex. : ' The 
tree was felled.' 

An Impersonal Verb ascribes an act to some unknown 
or unnamed agent. Ex. : ' It rains.' 

A Verb is used reflexively when it is placed between 
a subject and an object, both denoting the same person 
or thing. Ex. : ' He defended himself.' 

A Verb denoting reciprocal action — in which subject 
and object are supposed to change places — is followed by 
the words ' each other,' or by ' one another.' Ex. : ' They 
help each other.' 

Various Uses. — A Verb usually called Intransitive, or 
Transitive, or Passive, may, by exceptional use, be trans- 
ferred from one class to another. 

VERBS. 4:5r 

A Yerb usually iNTRANsrnvE may be followed by an 

Ex.: *We have dreamed a dream.' (Gen. xl. 8.) 'Let 
me die the death of the righteous.' (Numbers xxiii. 10.) 
' Lighten mine eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death.' (Ps. xiii. 3.) 

In these examples the objects are called cognate, because 
they are respectively like the predicates contained in the 

But objects not * cogriate ' often follow verbs called ' In- 
transitive. Bx. : * I could weep away the life of care that I 
have borne.' It is said of a ship, ' She walks the waters ; ' of 
another, ' She sails the ocean ; ' and of another, ' She smms 
the sea.' Examples of this kind are numerous. 

The Intransitive is used with a reflective meaning. Ex. : 
' Flee thee away ! ' ' Fare thee well ! ' 

The Intransitive is used with the meaning of the Passive. 

Ex. : ' This ivorj feels smooth.' ' The table moves.' Fol- 
lowed by a preposition, the Intransitive takes the form as well 
as the meaning of the Passive. Ex. : * His recovery is not 
despaired of.' 

A Verb is called Impersonal when the action is ascribed 
to an unknown or unnamed agent ; but the verb so called 
may be connected with a personal subject. 

Ex. : ' It rains.' ' Upon the wicked He shall rain snares,*^ 

A verb called Transitive may be used without any re- 
ference to an object. 

Ex. : ' Now I see.' (John ix. 25.) 

The verb * see ' is used intransitively seven times in tho 
chapter here referred to. 

Numerous examples like the following are found in good 
authors : — ' He stole a>wa.j.' ' He Iceeps aloof.' ' Streams v>rdt& 
and form a river,' 

The Passive Voice is sometimes used with a preposition, 
where we might expect to find a transitive verb. Ex. : ' My 
father was possessed of a small living in the Church.' 

The Transitive is often used with a Passive meaning. Ex. : 
' Here is a house to let' ' The book is hard to read.' * He 
published a tract, but it did not sell.' ' This paragraph reads 
badly.' ' There is much to admire in this picture.' 

Examples of this class are numerous. Such forms of ex- 
pression are as old as the English language. 




The original forms of Particles — including adverbs, 
prepositions, and conjunctions — are mostly found in E.I. 

* Adverbs have been formed from cases of adjectives and 
nouns, from the pronouns he (= he) J>e (= that) and hwa? 
{= who ?), and by means of composition. 

The following are Adverbs of which the formation in E.I. 
is not clearly known : — 








In E.I. many adverbs are formed by adding e, either to the 
«tem of a simple adjective, or to a compound ending with itc 
(= like). The ending lice, after passing through the forms 
liche, lick, lye, ly, in E.II., is permanently changed to ly in 
M.E., and gives to numerous adjectives, of Roman and of 
English origin, an adverbial form. 

Some words ending in ly are stiU used as adjectives — for 
example, 'goodly,' 'lovely,' and 'manly' — and one form 
serves often (especially in poetry) as an adjective and as an 
adverb. In M.E. the adverbial form has sometimes a distinct 
or special use, as the appended table shows. The special uses 
of some words ending in ly are indicated by Italic type. 

The sign — shows that a distinct adverbial form either does 
not exist or is not preferred. 




aft (a nautical word) 











wel (etc.) 





fain (' was fain ') 




j close ('came close') 

even (' he even "I 
said,' etc.) j 
fain (= gladly) 
hard (' rode hard ') 

Distinct Adverb. 

{' closely approach' 

' evenly placed ' 





last < 


still (= quiet) < 

straight ('is the 


high ( ' soars high ' ) 
last (' he came 1 

last ') / 

late ('came late') 
short ('fell short') 
still ('you stiin 
trust,' etc.) J 
straight (' went 1 

straight ') j 

Distinct Adverb, 

lastly (=' to con- 
clude ') 
' was lately here ' 
shortly (= soon) 

straightly ( = strictly) 








For all the words following ' straight,'' the use of a distinct 
adverbial form seems preferable, though no special meaning 
belongs to the ending ly. 

The suffix ly makes adverbs of ordinal adjectives, and ce 
makes adverbs of the numerals one, twoy three. 

Ex.: 'firstly,' 'thirdly,' 'once,' 'twice,' 'thrice.' 

Of several adverbs the original forms are cases of nouns in 
E.I. But hardly a trace of the genitive case remains in M.E., 
except, perhaps, in the word ' needs,' and in the compounds 
' sideways,' ' lengthways,' and ' now-a-days.' 

The following are examples of adverbs that were originally 
accusative cases of nouns in E.I. : — 'aye ' (= ever), ' cheap ' 
(from ceap, a bargain), ' north,' ' south,' ' east,' ' west,' ' back,* 
* home.' 

Pronominal Adverbs, of which several serve to define 
actions with respect to place and time, have been formed from 
the E.I. pronouns : — he (= he), the demonstrative Ipe (Fern. 
seo, Neut. |>8et), and the interrogative hwa ? (= who ?) 

The following belong to he : — 





her (here) 






heonne (henne) 


The following belong to pe (= that) : — 










J)ar (pere) 



J?anne (fenne) 


The following belong to hwa : — 

hwar (hwer) 
hwider (whedir) 
whanne (whenne) 
hwenne (etc.) 
why ? 
how ? 






then (and than") 


why ? 
how T 

Compound Adverbs. — Of these many now obsolete are 
found in E.II. Of those still employed some are formed by 
connecting a noun with one of the prepositions in. the ap- 
pended list. 

Compound Adverbs, 
ahed, abreast, away ; abaft, 

aboard, ashore, astern 
erewhile (inverted in whiles 

to-night, to-day 


a (for on) 

be (for by) 





per (Latin) 


Other compound adverbs are formed by connecting an 
adjective with a, which in composition may represent either 
on or of, and serves as the prefix placed before the numeral 
an (= one) in anon. In along a takes the place of and in 
andlong (a preposition). 

Other compound adverbs are formed by connecting pro- 
nominal adverbs with prepositions, as in the examples 
'herein,' 'hereafter,' 'hitherto,' 'therein,' 'thereupon,' and 
' wherefore.' 

The apparently simple forms of the adverbs yes and not 
are contracted compounds. Yes = ge-se, which = se ('it 
may be ') strengthened by the prefix ge, which here = ' surely.' 
Not is a contracted form of the words — ne-a-wiht or (in later 


forms) ' noUa-whit.^ Hence, by elision and contraction, came 
the form ^ na-wiht^ = ^ nawt^^ and finally = ^not' The old 
word ' wiht ' had several vague meanings, of which one = ' any 
living creature.'' 

' Yea ' is an emphatic form of a = ' a^/ ' = ©'^er. * Verily * 
(= truly) is used in the New Testament, but is otherwise 
obsolete. ' Forsooth ' (= for truth) was an earnest affirmative 
in E.II., but is now used only in irony. ' No,' ' nay,^ * never ^ 
are (like * not ') compounds of ne, a particle which in E.I. was. 
sometimes used alone, but was often strengthened by another 
expression, and was followed by a second negative. It is un- 
derstood that, in M.E., 'two negatives, having reference to 
one verb, are useless,' or * destroy each other.' But there was. 
no such rule in E.I. 


Adverbs serve chiefly to define the meanings of verbs, 
and serve also to make more definite the meanings of 
adjectives and adverbs. 

Ex, : ' He never speaks falsely,^ His style is ' very 
clear.' ' He writes very welV 

Adverbs, classified with respect to their uses, have the 
following names : — 



Adverbs of Quality 

' earnestly,' ' truly,' wisely.' 



« greatly,' 'plentifully," wholly.' 


' firstly,' ' secondly,' ' thirdly.' 


'here,' 'there,' 'where,' 'ashore.* 


'now,' 'then,' 'lately.' 


'yes," truly," surely.' 


' no,' ' not,' ' never.' 

• 55 


' perhaps,' ' possibly.' 

The preceding talle is not given as complete. A complete 
and logical Classification of Adverbs would he very extensive. 

Many Adverbs, of which the original forms are adjec- 
tives of quality and quantity, have the ending ly. 



Adverbs of Quality : ' clearly,' ' obscurely,' ' swiftly,' 
^ slowly.' 

Adverbs of Quantity : ' greatly,' ' hardly,' ' nearly,' 
^ wholly.' 

Adverbs are formed by adding ly to words ending in 
ing. Ex. : ' exceedingly.' 

Of many adjectives ending in ly a few remain. Ex. : 
' goodly,' ' manly,' ' lovely,' ' heavenly.' These words 
should not be used as adverbs. 

Some words ending in ly serve as adjectives and as 
adverbs. Ex. : ' daily,' ' weekly,' ' monthly,' ' yearly.' 

Several words not ending in ly serve, without any 
change of form, as adjectives and as adverbs. Ex. : 
' close,' ' hard,' ' last,' ' late,' ' long.' 

In E.I. and partly in E.II. a final e served to make 
adverbs distinct from adjectives ; but in M.E. the final e 
mostly disappears, and thus the adjective and the adverb 
have the same form, as the appended examples show : — 

E.I. — deore, deope, efne, hearde, lange, rihte, stille. 
M.E. — dear, deep, even, hard, long, right, still. 

Adverbs derived from numeral adjectives serve to 
denote — 

Order. — Ex. : ' firstly,' ' secondly,' ' thirdly.' 
Rates of Increase. — Ex. : ' threefold,' ' fourfold,' 
' thirtyfold.' 

Adverbs of Place may serve to denote — 
Kest in a place. Ex. : ' here,' ' there,' ' where.' 
Motion toward a place. Ex, : ' hither,' ' thither,' ' for- 

Motion from a place. Ex. : ' hence,' ' thence,' ' out,' 
' away.' 

Some Adverbs of Place have forms borrowed from 
nouns. Ex. : ' north,' ' south,' ' east,' ' west,' ' back,' 
' home.' 

Particles often used as Prepositions serve also as Ad- 
verbs of Place. Ex. : ' Come on ! ' 



The particle, if placed before a noun to show its relation to 
some preceding word, is called a preposition. Ex. : ' He stood 
on the bridge.' 

Several Compound Adverbs — formed by placing a 

Preposition before a Noun — serve as Adverbs of Place. 

Ex. : ' aboard,' ' ashore ' (a = on), ' overboard.' 
Adverbs of Time may serve to denote — 
The Present. Ex. : ' now,' ' to-day,' ' hitherto.' 
The Past. Ex. : ' then,' ' yesterday,' ' lately,' ' of yore ' 

((= years ago). 

The Future. Ex. : ' soon,' ' to-morrow,' ' hereafter,' 

^ then.' 

A Point of Time. Ex. : 'now,' 'then ' (Past or Future), 

' soon.' 

Duration. Ex. : ' still,' ' ever,' ' always,' ' aye.' 
Repetition. Ex. : ' again,' ' often,' ' seldom,' ' daily.' 
Adverbs of Affirmation have the forms — ' yes,' ' ay,' 

■^ yea ' ' truly,' ' surely,' ' certainly,' ' indeed,' etc. 

Adverbs of Negation have the forms — 'no,' 'nay,' 

^ never,' 'not.' 


13. Prepositions are divided, with respect to their forms, 
into two classes — Simple and Gom/pound. Ex. : The word 
' at ' is simple, but ' witJi-out ' is made of two words. 

Among simple prepositions the following are called 
original, because their derivation from other words in English 
is not known : — 














fram (from, fro) 





of (af) 

of (af, o') 

of (off, adverb) 

on (an) 

on (an) 



til (till) 




to (too, adverb) 






B 2 





le following are derivative prepositions : — 





after (efter, etc.) 



ser (ar, or) 

ere (in verse) 





sin (sithens) 



pTirgh (forow) 





Componnd Prepositions have the three forms — Prep. 
Particle; Prep. + Noun; Prep. + Adjective. 
The following are formed from Particles : — 








abuven (above) 



beforen (before) 












buten (boute) 

but (= except) 


into (intil) 



J)urhut (thorgheout) 






onto (ontil) 

unto (until) 


upon (upo) 






withoute (etc.) 


The following compounds are formed of particles and 

nouns. In ' down ' the prefix a has been cast off: — ' 





adoun (doun) 



agein (ayenst) 



amidde (in middes) 

amid {amidst) 

gemang "1 
on-mang j 

imang (among) 

among (amongst) 


bi syde (bysydes) 

beside (besides) 

The follow] 

Lng are compounds of particles and adjectives : — 





endlang (alang) 



of lah, alowe (adverbs) 



atwene, bitwene 



atwix, betwix 




. . wardes 

toward (towards) 


Near serves as a preposition, as neah served in E.I. 

Among prepositions found in E.II., but now obsolete, may 
be named * mid' (= vrith) and 'anent' (from E.I. , on efen), 
of which the first meaning = opposite, and the second = 
respecting. With the latter meaning, the word is still used in 

Per (Latin) is used in commercial arithmetic. 

Sans (Old French = without), though used by Shake- 
speare, is obsolete. 

Across now mostly takes the place of athwart^ from on 
J>weorh, an adverb in E.I. 


Prepositions are words placed before nouns and pro- 
nouns, to show their relations to preceding words. 

Fx. I. : ' We went into the field.' ' Into ' shows a 
relation of 'field ' and ' wenV 

Ex. II.: 'He is a man of honour.' '0/' shows a 
relation of ' honour ' and ' man.'' 

Ex. III. : ' Sacred to the memory,' etc. ' To ' shows a 
relation of ' memory ' and ' sacred.' 

Prepositions, with nouns following, form jpJirases^ of which 
some serve as adjectives, others as adverbs. Bx. I. : ' He 
is a man of honour ' = *he is an honourable man.' Ex. II. : 
* He writes with great care ' = ' he writes very carefully.^ 

Prepositions may serve to denote — 
Place. Ex. : ' at the gate ; ' ' in the town.' 
Time. Ex. : ' for a week ; ' ' on that day.' 
Agency, etc. Ex. : ' made by M. ; ' ' written by N.' 
Means, etc. Ex. : ' driven on by a gale ; ' ' cut with 
a, sword.' 

A Cause. Ex. : ' reproved for disobedience.' 

A Purpose. Ex. : ' the Sabbath was made for man.' 

Some Prepositions retain their primary meanings, and 
serve mostly to denote relations of place. Ex. : * above,' 
^ along,' 'around,' 'beneath,' 'beyond.' 

Other Prepositions are versatile with respect to their 
nses. A few examples are appended : — 


At. — At the gate — call at a house — at a time appointed — at 
least — at rest — at work — to aim at — to bark at— to glance at 
— to set at nought — to arrive at — glad at heart — he laugha 
at — he lives at Thorpe (a village). 

After. — ' After six days ' — ' longing after immortality.' 

About. — ' We walked about the town ' — ' about that time * 
— ' about a foot long ' — ' tell us all about it.' 

By. — ' He sat by the fire ' — ' the book was written by M.* 
— * measure your wishes by your means ' — ' this colour is not 
seen by candle-light.' 

For. — For some time — provisions for a month — food for 
children — the ship sailed for New York — we will wait for him 
- — for your sake — we took him for a friend — sold for five 
shillings — change for a crown — destined for-r-qualified for — 
he longs for — we pray for — I will not answer for him — he 
takes fruit for breakfast. 

In. — In the field — in the space — in the course of time — in 
that year — he lives in London — clothed in fine linen — rich in 
minerals — set in order — included in the list — to bear in mind 
— ^to confide in — have confidence in — it is not in his power — 
he acts in defiance of — in vain — in memory of M. 

Of. — He is a native of France — the home of — the court of 
France — the works of Spenser — the expedition of Raleigh- — 
his love of poetry — of course — on account of — ignorant of — 
full of — out of fashion — beware of the men — repent of — ac- 
cused of— made of — deprived of — a man of honour — I shall 
think of you — tbe bravest of the brave. 

On. — On this side of the case — on this theme (or subject) 
— on your honour. 

To. — It was given to M. — to buy corn — with regard to — 
subject to — to his honour let it be said — ' sacred to the 
memory' — ' when he came to himself — reduced to despair — 
they burn the wood to charcoal. 

Upon. — ' Meditate upon these things ' — ' they dwell upon 
their own merit.' 

With. — Mr. Smith was there with his sons — crowned with 
a garland — with our swords we defend our homes — land 
covered with thistles — an estate encumbered with debts — 
enriched with — corresponding with — endowed with — we can- 
not cope with him — fed with — replete with — ^blending with— 
he sympathized with them. 

Prepositions have been divided, with respect to their 
forms, into two classes — Simple and Compound. 

The following are Simple, and are also called Primi- 



tive, because their derivation from other forms is not 
clearly known : —' at,' ' by/ ' for,' ' from,' ' in,' ' on,' ' of,' 
' till,' ' to,' ' up,' ' with.' 

The following are compounds of particles : — ' above, 
'about,' 'before,' 'behind,' 'beneath,' 'beyond,' 'but,' 
' into,' ' throughout,' ' until,' ' upon,' ' within,' ' without.' 

The following are compounds of particles and nouns : — • 
' across,' ' against,' ' among,' ' beside \ov ' besides '). 

The following are compounds of particles and adjec- 
tives : — ' along,' ' amid,' ' around,' ' athwart,' ' below,' ' be- 
tween,' ' toward ' (or ' towards '). 


Some Adrerbs and some Prepositions are used as 

Words more di 

stinctly serving to connect sentences are 

here noticed ; 

firstly, with respect to origin and composition. 

Their forms 

ire mostly found in E.I. 

The sign + shows 

that words haying 

like forms in E.I. and M.E. have different 






and (ant, an) 


ser ]>e 

er (ar, or) 

ere (used in verse) 





yef (if) 






'ac,' 'oc' 



leste (les) 


swa + 

so (by so) 



otSer (or) 



f anne ()>an) 


n^^ . 

))ah (])oh, etc.) 

though (or although^ 

j)^ hwlle 


while (oT whilst) 


alswa (also, als) 

also, as 


the while 


for ]?am ]>e 

for (= because) 

for (= because) 

faet (pron.) 

that (conj.) 



by e cause \)&t 


mara + ofer 



na ]>e las 













whether (wher) 




Some Conjunctions (called correlati*be) consist of two 
words placed apart, as in the examples appended. Of these 
conjunctions, that may be described as going in pairs, several 
were often employed in E.I. and E.II., and they are still used 
in M.E. 

alswa + wel 
bu . . . and 
oSSe . . . ome 
natSor . . . ne 


as (wel) as 
ba . . . ant 
oj^er ... or | 

nother . . . nor f 


as (well) as 
both . . 
either . . . or 
neither . . . nor 

The repetition of ' what ' (in the form of ' what ' . . . 
* what ') has been classed with correlative conjunctions. In 
E.II. that form is used as = * partly ' . . . ' partly.' 

Some conjunctions found in the literature of the sixteenth 
and seventeenth centuries are now treated as obsolete. A few 
examples are appended. 



furt$or (ad/v.) 

geltc + wise 


al-be that 

and (= an = if) 

ek (eke) 

forther (furthermore) 





albeit (=^though) 
an (= if) 
eJce (=: also) 
howbeit (= 


Conjunctions are words used to connect sentences. 

Ex. : ' The sun shines and the rainbow appears.' 

A sentence tells something and contains one verb. 

A phrase consists of two or more words, but does not 
contain a verb. Fx. : ' for a time ; ' ' in a place.' 

The conjunction and serves to connect sentences, or 
phrases, or words. 

Ex, I. : ' The sun shines and the rainbow appears.' 

Ex. II. : ' In the morning and in the evening my 
voice shall be heard.' 


Ex, III. : ' A mixture of blue and yellow makes 

Conjunctions are divided into two classes, called Go- 
ordinative and Subordinative, 

Ex. 1st class : 'and,' 'or,' 'but,' 'yet, ' for.' 

Ex, 2nd class: 'that,' 'as,' 'than,' 'because,' 'if,' 'un- 
less,' 'though,' ' lest.' 


And serves to indicate a natural sequence, or a like- 
ness of two assertions. 

Ex, I. : ' Dense clouds were collected, and gloom was 
spread over the dale.' 

Ex, II. : 'A false witness shall not go unpunished, 
and he that speaketh lies shall perish.' 

No other conjunction has all the uses of and. The 
following words serve here and there to take its place : — 
* also,' ' besides,' ' farther,' ' meanwhile,' ' now,' ' even.' 

Several words that in Second English might sometimes 
take the place of * and ' are now almost, or quite, obsolete. 

Ex. : ^ eke' (quite obsolete, = ' also'), 'further,' 'further- 
more,' 'likewise,' 'moreover,' 'thereon,' 'thereupon, 'there- 

The Ordinal Adverbs — ' firstly,' ' secondly,' ' thirdly,' 
etc. — serve to connect sentences, and to show the order in 
which assertions, etc., are placed. 

Or (often preceded by either and sometimes followed 
by else) may serve to indicate that of two assertions one 
must be true. 

Ex. : ' Either Achilles must subdue his anger, or he 
must see the defeat of the Grecian army.' 

Nor, preceded by neither, or by not, indicates a two- 
fold negation, or a forbidding of two things. 

Ex. I. : ' Neither hath this man sinned, nor [have] 
his parents [sinned].' 

Ex. II. : ' Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, 
■nor serve them.' 

But may serve to indicate a contrast, or may intro- 


duce a limitation, or may strengthen a denial already- 
expressed by ' not.' 

Ex. I. : ' Wealth maketh many friends ; hut the poor 
is separated from his neighbour.' 

Ex. II. : ' In youth they loved each other ; hut their 
friendship was not permanent.' 

Ex. III. : ' Wisdom will not make us love disputation, 
hut will show the vanity of our disputes.' 

For (or therefore) is used when one sentence tells the 
effect, and another tells the cause. 

Ex. : ' The water flows rapidly here ; for the bed of 
the river has a steep descent.' 

In all the preceding examples the conjunctions are Go- 
ordinative, and the sentences connected are Co-ordinate Sen- 
tences. Each has an independent meaning. In the first of 
the examples given to show the uses of ' hut,' the conjunction 
may be omitted, and still the meaning of the second sentence 
remains unchanged. This is not the case when sentences are 
connected by 'if.' Ex.: 'You will wia if you persevere.' 
Take away ' if and the second sentence is an assertion. But, 
when following ' if the second sentence expresses a condition 
of winning. The second sentence serves to limit or define the 
meaning of the first, as the adverb ' perhaps ' may serve to 
limit the assertion expressed by a verb. A sentence thus 
serving, or making no independent assertion, is called Sub- 
ordinate. The conjunctions by which Subordinate Sentences 
are introduced are called Subordinative. It is convenient to 
describe as Glauses all Subordinate Sentences. 

The independent sentence to which a Clause belongs is 
called the Principal Sentence. 

When placed in connexion with a Principal Sentence, a 
Clause may serve as a N"oun, or as an Adjective, or as an 

Ex. I. 'I know that flatterers are often traitors.' 
Ex. II. ' The man who acts honestly has peace of mind.' 
Ex. III. ' He began to work when the day dawned.' 
In Ex. I. the words in Italic form a Noun Clause, and 
follow the verb, just as the words ' the fact ' might follow. 
In Ex. II. the words in Italic form an Adjective Clause, and 
qualify the noun ' man.' In Ex. III. the words in Italic form 
an Adverbial Clause, and define the verb 'began,' as the 
adverb ' early ' might define it. 


In Ex. II. the Adjective Clause is introduced by the 
Relative Pronoun ' who.' It must be noticed here that the 
words more strictly called Conjunctions* are not the only 
words employed to connect sentences. Adjective Clauses are 
introduced by means of Relative Pronouns, and sometimes by 
means of Adverbs. Adverbial Clauses are introduced by 
words otherwise used as Adverbs or as Prepositions. 

Simple Adverbs — i.e. adverbial expressions, each contained 
in a single word — serve to define verbs with respect to place, 
time, degree, cause, and manner. Adverbial Phrases are 
formed by placing prepositions before nouns, and serve also 
(but more extensively) to define verbs with respect to place, 
time, degree, cause, and manner. Subordinative Conjunctions 
— including words otherwise used as adverbs and as preposi- 
tions — serve to introduce clauses by which definitions of 
place, time, degree, cause, and manner are more completely 
and more clearly expressed. The extended treatment of Sub- 
ordinative Conjunctions belongs to the Analysis of Sentences ; 
but a few examples of uses may here be appended. 

Subordinative Conjunctions. 

Where serves to introduce an adverbial clause of Place,. 
that may answer the question ' where ? ' 

Ex. : ' He found the book where he left it.' 

Wherever introduces a clause that may answer a ques- 
tion beginning either with ' where ' or ' whither.' 

Ex. : ' He will go wherever duty may call him.' 

Before may introduce an adverbial clause of Time, and 
may serve to indicate either the Past or the Future. 

Ex, I. ; ' Before I was afflicted, I went astray.' 

Ex. II. : ' Look before you leap.' 

Ere — more frequently used in verse than in prose — 
has the meaning of ' before,' or ' sooner than,' and may 
have reference either to the Past or to the Future. 

When mostly refers to a point of Time ; but may in- 
troduce a conditional clause, as in Ex. II. and III. 

Ex. I. ' You will come when the bell rings.' 

Ex. II. ' Do you hope to win respect when you flatter 

Ex. III. ' When the bell is cast, the form may be- 


While (or ' whilst ') often introduces a clause express- 
ing duration, but may sometimes refer especially to cir- 

Ex. I. : ' While we are dreaming, time is passing away.' 

JEx, II. : ' While you are making that noise, I have to 
solve this problem.' 

Until has reference to a point of time, and answers the 
question ' how long ? ' 

Fx, : ' He stayed on the mountain until the sun ap- 

As (following 'as' or ' so') introduces a clause of limi- 
tation, or of comparison. 

Ex. I. : 'So far as I can see, there is no exception to 
the rule.' 

Ex. II. : ' He runs as fast as you can run.' 

So (following ' as ') may introduce a clause defining a 
proportionate increase or decrease. 

Ex. : ' As the heat increases, so the mercury in the 
thermometer rises.' 

Than refers to a preceding comparative adjective or 

Ex. : ' He runs faster than I can run.' 

When 'than' is immediately followed by a dependent pro- 
noun, such as * me,' ' him,' or ' them,' some words have been 
omitted. But we find in good authors ' whom ' placed next 
to * than.' Dependent pronouns follow prepositions. 

If introduces a conditional clause. 
Ex. : ' If I have time, I will call upon you.' 
If (following ' as ') introduces a clause of comparison. 
Ex. : ' He looks 'asif^ he did not know us' {i.e. as 
he might look if he did not know us). 

' As though ' is found instead of ^asif,' where the meaning 
is hke that of the given example. 

* As ' may serve to indicate a ground or reason for a 
following assertion. 

Ex. : ' As I have not read the book, I shall not at- 
tempt to describe it.' 

Because (more distinct than ' for ') refers an effect to 
its cause. 


' The lake must be frozen, because the temperature- 
has long been lower than twenty degrees.' 

That may introduce a clause expressing a purpose, or 
— following ' so ' — may indicate a manner of acting. 

Ex, I. : ' The guide will go forward, that he may show 
us the way.' 

Ex, II. : ' He went away, so that his departure was 
not noticed.' 

' That ' is a versatile connective, and may introduce either 
an adjective clause or a noun clause. 

Ex. 1. — * Here is the man that will tell the truth.' 
Ex. II. — ' We know that you wrote the letter.' 

Though. A sentence preceded by a clause beginning 
with 'though' (or 'although') serves to contradict a 
sequence of cause and effect that might be expected. 

Ex. : ' Though you cannot understand it, you must 
admit that it is true.' 

Lest introduces a clause expressing the opposite of a 
wish or a purpose. 

Ex. : * Lest our feet should step astray, 

Protect and guide us in the way.' 

In the Bible, lest^ following a command (or a warn- 
ing), = 'that' . . . 'not,' or 'that' . . . 'no.' 
Ex, I. : ' Take heed, that no man deceive you.' 
Ex. II. : ' Take heed, lest any man deceive you.' 
Unless (like ' except ') may introduce a conditional 

Ex. I. : ' He will not be pardoned unless he repent.' 
Ex, II. : ' Except these abide in the ship, ye cannot 
be saved.' 

Of the particles here noticed as subordinative con- 
junctions, the following may, in other places, serve as 
adverbs : — ' before,' ' so,' ' when,' ' where,' ' wherever.' 
The words ' before ' and ' except ' are used as preposi- 

Various Uses. — In parsing a sentence every particle 
should be named with respect to its use in the sentence. 
One particle — for example, 'but' — may serve in one 


place as an adverb, in another as a preposition, and in a 
third place as a conjunction. 

Ex. I. : ' Other joys are hut toys ' (' but ' = ' only '). 

Ex, II. : ' All hut honour is lost ' (' but ' = ' except '). 

Ex. III. : ' Mushrooms soon spring up, hut oaks grow 

In Ex. I. ' hut ' is used as an adverb. 

In Ex. II. ' hut ' is used as a preposition. 

In Ex. III. ' hut ' connects two sentences. 

The particle serving to define a verb, an adjective, or 
an adverb is called an Adverb. 

The particle placed before a noun (or a pronoun) to 
show its relation is called a Preposition. 

The particle that connects sentences is a Conjunction. 

In many sentences the position of the adverb may be 

Ex. I. : ' Sunshine now brightens the dale.' 

Ex. II. : ' Sunshine brightens now the dale.' 

Ex. III. : ' Now sunshine brightens the dale.' 

The Preposition may be moved, if taken with its de- 
pendent noun, but otherwise must not leave its place. 

Ex. I. : 'In the morning the lark's song is heard.' 

Ex. II. : ' The lark's song is heard in the morning.^ 

In many instances the Conjunction is immovable. If 
it be moved, the following clause must also be moved. 

Ex. I. : ' The water flows rapidly here ; for the bed of 
the stream is steep.' 

Ex. II. : 'If you persevere, you will win.' 

Ex. III. : ' You will win, if you persevere.'' 


Simple vowels, syllables with no distinct meaning, 
phrases, and some contracted sentences are found among 
the expressions called Interjections. 


eala! (='ah!' *0!') 
wa la wa ! 1 

(= woe ! lo, woe !) J 


walaway ! 

alas! (O.F.) 

ah ! oh ! (O.F.) a ! 


well-a-day f 

alas ! 


Some interjections are contracted forms of words. Others 
•may be accepted as sounds used instinctively to express 
emotions. An extended notice of sucli words and sounds has 
great interest in connexion with the history of culture. 
There are found comparatively few interjections in E.I. litera- 
ture, which was mostly written by churchmen, and by no 
means represented the common talk of the people. In E.II. 
interjections are, in some respects, too abundant. In many 
examples, strange abbreviations, and other changes made in 
sacred names, served to disguise irreverence. The use of 
such expletives is well reproved in an old * Treatise on Peni- 
tence,' of which a translation, called the ' Persones Tale,' is 
ascribed to Chaucer. 

Some sounds called interjections have vague or versatile 
meanings — like those of ' ! ' and ' ah ! ' Others have uses 
that, in some degree, may be defined. Wonder is expressed 
by ' ho ! ' and sometimes by ' ah ! ' which serves also as an 
expression of grief. Contempt may be expressed by ' pooh ! ' 
' psha ! ' or ' fadge ! ' This word is made classical by a 
passage in Goldsmith. Disbelief is indicated by ' indeed ! ' 
and by ' forsooth ! * The latter, used formerly in serious 
affirmation, = ' truly ! ' The word ' nay,' when used as an 
interjection, means ' yea, and more than that ! ' The word 
' why ' sometimes serves as an interjection expressing a 
momentary hesitation. 

Abhorrence may be expressed by means of such exclama- 
tions as ' fie ! ' ' out ! ' and ' away ! ' The meaning of the last 
is more distinctly given in the French ' avaunt ! ' which is 
an altered form of the Latin ^ ab ante,'' and = *out of my 
way!' For bidding silence 'hush!' 'hist!' and 'whist!' 
are used. The Old French verb ' oyes! ' (=' hear ye ! ') belongs 
to courts of law. In salutations the E.I. verb wilcumian 
(= greet kindly) is still used in the form of ' welcome ! '( = 
' hail ! '); but ' well-done ! ' is a compound word, of which the 
first part is the adverb ' well.' Of exclamations serving to 
excite action several are obsolete. The adverb ^yare' (= 
' ready ' ), used as an interjection by Shakespeaee, belongs to 
the stem gar, of which the uses in Teutonic languages are 
extensive. The old cry for help ' harow I ' and the war-cry 
* havoc ! ' are obsolete. 

A farther analysis of exclamations might lead too far. 
The cry of Chanticleer has sometimes served as an interjection. 
The calls ' loo, loo ! ' and ' halloo ! ' — belonging to the chase — 



and some calls addressed to animals — ' hayt ! ' * wo ! ' etc. — 
might be classed with interjections. 

Interjections have no syntax, or connexion with words in 
a sentence. Where such connexion appears, a word has been 
omitted. Ex. : * Woe is me ! ' = ' Woe is for we.' 



When the form of a word is changed in order to show 
a difference in its use, or its relation to another word, 
the change is called inflexion. The several inflexions in- 
dicating the various relations in which a noun may be 
placed in a sentence are called case-endings. The ap- 
pended table shows all the case-endings of the Latin noun 
'puer^ a boy. 

Noun. — Second Declension (Masculine). 

Examples of Uses. 
puer venit, tlie hoy is come 
piieri caput, tJie hoy^s head 

puero libmm dat, he gives a 
iooh to the hoy 

puerum laudat, he praises the 

laudor a piiero, I am praised 

hy the hoy 

Nominative Case pii-er, a hoy 
Genitive „ piier-i, of a 

Dative „ piier-o, to a 

Accusative (or 


puer-nm, a 

puer-o, hy or 
with a hoy 

Nominative Case piier-i, hoys 
Genitive „ piier-oriim, of hoys 

Dative „ piier-is, to hoys 

Accusative „ puer-os, hoys 
Ahlative „ puer-is, hy or with hoys 

The general use of inflexions of case is to serve as substitutes for 
prepositions. The English prepositions used in the example here given by 
no means serve to represent all the uses of the several cases. When it is 


said, ' this noun is in the Genitive' nothing definite is told ; for the Genitive 
case in Latin (as in Greek) is used to express several distinct relations of 
words, and the same remark may be applied to the other cases. But their 
respective uses are not sufficiently extensive and precise to express all the 
relations that may he expressed by prepositions. These particles were there- 
fore used for many purposes in Latin, and for more in Greek, though both 
these languages are called synthetic. 

A language in -which separate particles are mostly used instead of in- 
flexions is called analytical. 

The general history of the Teutonic Languages is a story of transition 
from the synthetic form to the analytic ; but in High German the process 
has not been carried to such an extent as in English. 

Our modern language is mostly analytic, but retains some ioflexions 
•which may be described as saved from the ruin in which others were 
involved. These vestiges of inflexions are found in the five parts of 
speech — Notrx, Adjective, Pronoun, Verb, and Adverb. 

E.I., in several of the uses to which the cases of nouns are applied in 
Syntax, agrees well with Latin. The Nominative is the case of the Subject 
(or the name of the agent). The Genitive denotes possession, and has 
several other uses (as in Latin). The Dative answers the question 'to 
whomV and has some other uses. The Accusative (or ' Objective') is the 
case that in sense immediately follows the verb transitive. Besides these 
cases E.I. had an Instrumental, used to denote the means or the instrument 
used in action. 

Nouns in E.I. and E.II. — Nouns in E.I. may, with respect to their forms 
of declension, be divided into more than two classes ; but all may be viewed 
as variations of two declensions. These two declensions, found in the 
Oldest English, are called the strong and the weak. The first (especially 
as used for masculine nouns) has the greater number of inflexions to denote 
the various relations in which a noun may stand with other words in a 

The second declension has fewer changes, and is therefore called weak, 
with regard to inflexions. SHU'S is a masculine noun of the first or strong 
declension, to which denu (feminine) and word (neuter) also belong. 
Steorra is a masculine noun of the second or weak declension, in which the 
three genders agree closely with one another in their inflexions. 

E.I. Nouns. — First Declension. 

N. smi^, a smith 
G. smiles, of a smith 
D. smi^e, to or with— 
Ace. ami's, a smith 

N. denu, a dell 
G. dene, of— 
i>. dene, to or with — 
Ace. dene, a dell 

N. word, a word 
G. wordes, of— 
B. worde, to or with - 
Ace. word, a word 

smi-Sas, smiths 
smi'Sa, of smiths 
smi-Sum, to or with- 
smitSas, smiths 

dena, dells 
denen, of — 
dennm, to or with — 
dena, dells 

word, words 
worda, of — 
wordum, to or with- 
word, words 


E.I. NoTTN. — Second Declension. 

Singular. Plural. 

N. steorra, a star 

G. steorran, of — 

D. steorran, to or with — 

Ace. steorran, a star 

steorran, stars 
steorrena, of — 
steorrum, to or with- 
steorran, stars 

It is evident that, in E.I., inflexions did not suffice to make clear all 
ithe uses of nouns, as singular and plural, or all the relations that are now 
indicated by position and by the use of the prepositions ' of,' ' to,' ' for,' 

* by,' ' with,' and others. 

In none of the forms above given has the accusative case a distinct 
inflexion like U77i in the Latin second declension (masculine). Consequently, 
prepositions are extensively used in E.I,, though not always in the places 
where they would be used in Modern English. In ten verses taken from 
the parable of the 'Prodigal Son ' (Luke xv. 11-21), Modern English has 
iwenty-six prepositions, and E.I. has twenty-two. But in the Oldest 
English, prepositions were followed by several cases — the Accusative, the 
Dative, and the Genitive. Thus, by the aid of both cases and prepositions, 
several relations of words for which we have now but one form had clearly 
distinct forms. 

When compared, not with Greek, but with Modern English, E.I. may 
be called rich in inflexions. 

During the long transitional period, when E.II. in many forms was 
written, the general tendency of transition was to cast away the old 

In the most important of the dialects (the Midland) we find, as early as the 
thirteenth century, the grammatical gender of nouns cast aside. Instead of 
the several forms of the plural, es is the ordinary sign, though en (for the 
older an) is still used in forming plurals, es is also used as the ordinary 
suffix of the possessive case. These changes were confirmed in the time of 

In Modern English the noun retains two inflexions, es for the posses- 
sive case (as in smiles) is now changed to the contracted form 's. In the 
days of Addison some educated men believed that the possessive 's was a 
contraction of the adjective his. It was erroneously supposed that, in the 
Oldest English, men wrote thus, — * the king his crown,' and then reduced 
' his ' to the contracted form, seen in ' the king's crown.' 

The grammarians of Addison's time never thought of one objection 
to their etymology of 's. ' The queen her crown ' is not easily contracted 
into 'the queen's crown,' if we take the 's for a contraction of the word 

* his.^ 

Of the old endings for the plural, en (a substitute for an) still survives 
in oxen, as well as in ' housen^ ' shoon^ and other words preserved in 
dialects. The plural suffix en, which became obsolete in the Elizabethan 
time, did not always represent the an of E.I., but was suffixed to some 
nouns that in E.I. belonged to the first or strong declension. In E.I. 
some plurals were formed by vowel-change. Ex. : f 6t, f et. The modern 
forms 'feet,' 'geese,' 'men,' 'mice,' 'teeth,' represent E.I. plurals formed 
by vowel-change. 

It is an error to suppose that the plural s was introduced with Norman- 
Prench about the time of the Conquest. The suffix es and its contracted 


fonn, s, are clearly variations of as, the plural ending in E.I. for masculine 
nouns of the first declension, of which smith (plural = smi^as) is an 

The Oldest English had graniTnatical genders, which were often marked 
by the endings of nouns, as in the following examples : — 

Masculine. — Nouns ending in a, ere, end, ing (patronymic), m, 
had, dom, scipe. Ex.: gemana {community), writere {writer), Haelend 
(Saviour), Finning {Finn's son), waestm {fruit), ))eowhad {serfdom), wisdom 
(wisdom), fredndscipe {friendship). 

Feminine. — Nouns ending in warn (collective), en (with exceptions), "S 
(abstract), ing or ung (abstract), nes (abstract), and u. Ex. : bnhr- 
w&ra {townsfolk), wjlen{ female slave), AxLgu.iS {virtue), Bce&wvLUg {contem- 
plation), mildheortnes (mercy), denn {dell). 

Netjteb. — Noims ending in em, lac, tl, and the diminutive suffixes 
incle and en. Ex.: domern {sessions-house), wiflac {wedlock), setl {seat), 
scipincle {skiff), cycen {chicken). 

In the course of the thirteenth century words formerly masculine or 
feminine were made neuter ; in others a confusion of genders is found. 

In the Midland Dialect of the fourteenth century the genders of nouns 
are mostly defined in accordance with the natural rule of Modern English. 

17. NOUNS.— M.E. 

Nouns in M.E. have inflexions to denote Gender^ 
2^umber, and Case, 

In Modern English we have no grammatical genders. 

In E.I. steorra (a star) is of the masculine gender ; denu (a * dell,' op 
narrow valley, still called ' dene ' or ' dean ' in some names of places) is 
feminine. These are grammatical genders. The distinction made between 
them is not founded in nature. 

Nouns are divided into three classes, called Genders : — 
Masculine, Feminine, and Neuter. 

Some nouns have inflexions to distinguish the feminine 
from the masculine gender. 

Nouns used as distinctive names of males are called 

Names of females are called Feminine. 

Names of notions and things are called Neuter. 

Distinctions of gender, in Modern English, are mostly founded in nature, 
and are not borrowed either from First English or from Latin. 

When persons are named, sex is often denoted by the 
use of two different words which, in some instances, 
belong to one stem. 

F 2 










r matron or mis. 
\ tress 














sire "1 
sir J 




























Different words are used 

to distinguish some animals 

as male and female. Ex. : — 








, ^oose 




f hind 

steer j 





wild duck 











hound 1 
dog / 






When gender is marked by a change of termination, 
the suffix denoting the feminine is mostly ess, borrowed 
from Latin and Norman-French. 













































Masculine. Feminine. 

shepherd shepherdess 



The following words, sometimes used, may still be 

called foreign : — 



Masculine. Feminine. 

margrave margravine 

signor signora 

sultan sultana 

€zar czanna 

don donna 

landgrave landgravine 

ine serves as the feminine suffix in ' heroine,' and in 
such proper names as ' Josephine ' and ' Pauline.' 

The E.I. feminine ending en remains only in one word 
— 'vixen' — and in 'spinster' we have the only example 
left of star, another feminine ending in E.I. 

The Latin feminine ending trix is seen in the words 
^ executrix ' and ' testatrix,' 

In some compounds the second word denotes gender. 



gaffer (= godfather) 

gammer (= godmother) 







In E.I. the words carl (masculine) and cwen (feminine) 
were sometimes used to denote gender in names of animals. 
In M.E. such compounds as the following are used : — 



Many names of persons are, with respect to gender, 
Common. The tendency in M.E. is to increase the number 
of these words, of which the following are examples : — 

child friend painter servant 

cousin neighbour parent slave 

enemy orphan poet teacher 


The following are examples of masculine nouns having- 
no corresponding feminine nouns : — 

captain j^dge soldier 

cliampion knight sqnire 

fisherman parson swain 

The following are examples of feminine nouns having 
no corresponding masculine nouns : — 

Amazon naiad shrew 

muse nymph . siren 

Of several nouns the gender is defined by reference to 
mythology and poetry : — 

Cyclops gnome naiad 

fairy muse • sylph 

Besides distinctions of gender founded in nature we find, in our uses of 
pronouns, some distinctions made with regard to imaginative or poetical 
notions of gender, and here and there also are found some slight traces of 
grammatical gender in E.I., Old French, and Latin. A few examples of 
poetical gender may be given. It is hardly necessary to add that these 
cannot be placed under any rules. [The abbreviations M.for masculine and 
F. for feminine may be used here.'] 

Among the names of the great forces and manifestations of nature we 
find treated as masculine: — the sun, and the names of several planets 
(' Mercury,' ' Mars,' * Jupiter,' ' Neptune ') ; but ' Venus ' and * the Earth ' 
are feminine ; the Moon ('queen of night'), Dawn ('Aurora'), 'Evening' 
and 'Night,' ' Nature' and ' the World' (the l-ast as used by Sheixey), are 
F. The stormy north- wind (' Boreas ') and the gentle ' Zephyr ' are 
both M. 

The sea and rivers are both M. and F. ' The river [Thames] glideth 
at his own sweet will.' (Woedswoeth.) The same poet makes 'the Wharf * 
and ' the Duddon ' M., though they are rivers of small extent. Of the four 
seasons all may be M., but ' Spring ' is sometimes named as F. — 

* So forth issew'd the seasons of the yeare : 
First, lusty Spring . . . 
And in his hand a javelin he did beare . . . 
Then came the jolly Sommer . . . 
And on his head a girlond well beseene 
He wore . . . 

Then came the Autumne, all in yellow clad . . . 
Laden with fruits that made him laugh . . . 
Lastly came Winter cloathM all in frize, 
Chattering his teeth for cold that did him chill.' 


Of trees the oak, cedar, and pine are M. Among flowers the rose, the 
lily, and others are F.; but ' Poor Eobin,' ' Sweet William,' ' Old Man,' and 
others are M. In zoology masculine or neuter pronouns generally follow 


names of reptiles and names of the larger quadrupeds. In the latter class 
the two sexes have often distinct names, as in the examples ' lion,' ' lioness,' 
' tiger,' ' tigress.' The ' hare,' the ' mouse,' and the ' mole ' are mostly 
named as F. 

Poetry prevails more in the names of birds. To the M. belong the 
' eagle,' the ' redbreast,* and sometimes the ' owl : ' — 

' This vagrant owl is playing here — 
He^s at file top of his enjoyment.' 


But Gray (in his * Elegy ') refers to the ' owl ' as F. The * sky-lark * is 
named as M, and F. The ' cuckoo ' (mostly F.) is named by Chaucer as 
both M. and F. 

To the latter poetical gender belong mostly the ' nightingale ' ('Philo- 
mel '), the ' lapwing,' the 'turtle,' and the ' dove ;' but there are exceptions : — 

' Over his own sweet voice the stock-dove broods.' 


Not only inanimate things in nature, but also the tools or implements- 
commonly used in agriculture are talked of as belonging to the feminine 
class. CoBBBTT says (in his 'English Grammar,' 1826): ' Our country 
folks in Hampshire call almost everything he or sAe.' Of all habits of this 
kind the sailor's, in talking of his ship (especially of a sailing-vessel), seems 
the most general and permanent. It arises from the same instinct to whicli 
poetry owes its birth. Of a sailing-vessel far out on the Pacific Ocean, and 
driven along by a breeze, Wilson says : ' She walked the waters like a 
thing of life.' Other poets have made classic the sailor's usage : — 'Down 
with the topmast ; yare ! — lower, lower ; bring her to try with main-course. 
Lay her a-hold, a-hold; set her two courses ; off to sea again ! Lay her 
off! ' (Shakespeare.) 

' Where lies the land to which yon ship must go ? 
Fresh as a lark, mounting at break of day, 
Festively she puts forth in trim array ; 
Is she for tropic suns or polar snow ? 
What boots the inquiry ? Neither friend nor foe 
She cares for ; let her travel where she may. 
She finds familiar names, a beaten way 
Ever before her, and a wind to blow.' 


Masculine names given to ships have no effect on the sailor's use of thfr 
poetical feminine. The ' Bellerophon ' (' a man-of-war ') ' drops her anchor ; ' 
and of another ship, the ' Earl of Abergavenny,' it is said, ' She lay at 
anchor off the Isle of Wight.' 

The names of lands and nations are poetically feminine. Ex, : ' France,'" 
'Holland,' 'Britain' (in Goldsmith's 'Traveller'). Germania is F., but 
the German people (in their poetry) call Beutschland their Vaterland ( -= 

The names of human passions and emotions are followed by both M. 
and F. pronouns. In a fine ode on • The Passions ' (written by Collins) 
' Fear, bewildered, laid his hand ainid the chords ;' Anger rushed, ' his eyes 
on fire ; ' wan Despair ' beguiled his grief ; ' Hope ' waved her golden hair; ' 
Kevenge ' threw down his sword ; ' Pity ' applied her soul-subduing voice ; *' 


Melancholy ' poured through the mellow horn her pensive soul ; ' Cheerful- 
ness ' flung her bow across her shoulders ; ' Joy ' addressed his hand to the 
lively pipe,' As treated by Bunyan, Despair is M. and ' Diffidence is the 
wife ' of ' Despair.' ' Enterprise ' is finely described as a bold youth (by 
Woedsworth). Many names of ideas — including peace, liberty, victory — 
are treated as F. Both ' fancy ' and ' imagination ' are described as F. by 
WoRBSWOBTH, Gven when he writes in prose. Of * Domestic Peace ' Cole- 
BiDGE writes : — 

* In a cottaged vale she dwells, 
Listening to the Sabbath- bells.' 

Both ' Indolence ' and * Industry ' are treated as M. by Thomson. 
' Contemplation,' ' Leisure,' and ' Laiighter,' are made M. by Milton, and 
Collins makes ' Freedom ' masculine. Sackville makes ' sleep ' masculine. 

' "Wisdom ' is personified as F. in the Bible {Proverbs viii.) All the arts 
and sciences (if personified), ' Poetry,' and all the nine Muses are F. 

Among the creatures of poetic imagination ' fairies ' are both M. and F., 
and have a king (* Oberon ') and a queen (' Titania '). ' Puck' and ' Ariel ' 
are M. Of goblins ' Eobin GoodfeUow ' (like the German Kobold) is M. 
Among creatures called demons (in the evil sense of the word) the M. 
prevails. ' Death ' is made M. and is described as ' a king ' (by Milton) ; 
but ' Sin ' is the ' onother ' of ' Death.' In the oldest of English poems 
('Beowulf') one of the 'monsters ' slain by the hero is called ' Grendel,' 
-and a worse monster is called ' Grendel's mother.' 

' Keligion,' as described by poets, is a matron. ' The Church ' is called 
'a mother,' and 'Faith,' 'Hope,' and 'Love' (in union with 'Eeligion') 
are all named as feminine. The following quotations are taken from 
"Wordsworth : — ' Sacred Eeligion ! mother of form and fear.' ' Faith had 
her arch.' 'Hope had her spire.' 'Love laid (the foundations of) her 
towers.' ' The Mother Church in yon sequestered vale.' 

Some amusing examples of gender poetically defined may be found in 
Charles Lamb's essay — ' Eejoicings upon the New Year's coming of Age.' 

Vestiges of grammatical gender are traced in some abstract Roman 
nouns, when used in personification. ISTouns with the endings ' ry,' • ty,' 
'tion,' 'ice,' * ance,' and 'ence,' are often treated as F. ; but exceptions 
may be found, as we have already seen, in ' Industry ' and ' Indolence.' 

Some English nouns with the endings 'ing,' ' ness,' and *tli' (which 
are feminine suffixes in E.I.) are feminine, when used as names of per- 
sonifications. But the word ' Wisdom,' with others, may show that no rule 
can be prescribed for pqetical genders. ' Wisdom,' as already noticed, is 
feminine in poetry, though ' dom ' is a masculine ending in E.I. 

Nouns. Number. — There are two numbers — Singular 
and Plural. 

A noun in the Singular is the name oi one. 

A noun in the Plural is the name of two or of more 
than two. 

The Plural is formed by adding ' s ' or ' es ' to the 

This plural ' s ' belongs to the first or strong declension in the Oldest 


English. The word smi-S-as is the plural of ' smith.' The notion that 
plural s was borrowed from Norman-French is erroneous. But it may be 
true that in E.II. the general use of es, as the siiffix of the Plural, was 
confirmed by its agreement with the Norman-French endings s and x. 

Several Old English words change final f into ves 
for the plural. Ex, : ' leaf,' ' leaves ; ' * thief,' ' thieves ; ' 
^ shelf,' ' shelves.' 

But the plural of ' chief ' is ' chiefs.' 

Several nouns ending in f, following oo, f, or r, form 
their plurals by adding s. Ex. : ' roof/ ' roofs ; ' ' cliff,' 
'cliffs;' ' dwarf," dwarfs.' 

The plurals of ' wharf and * staff' are frequently written 
as ' wharves ' and * staves.' 

Final y after a vowel takes s, but after a consonant 
changes to ies. Ex, : ' boys,' ' days,' ' keys ; ' but ' flies,' 
' spies,' ' cities.' 

Several foreign words ending in o add es to form their 
plurals. Ex, : ' echoes,' ' mottoes,' ' negroes,' ' potatoes.' 

' s ' only is added in ' cantos,' ' grottos,' and * mosqnitos,' 
and to nouns ending in io or 00. Ex. : ' folios,' ' cuckoos.' 

Some nouns have no plural forms. Ex. : ' tempe- 
rance,' ' honesty,' ' fidelity.' 

Other nouns have no singular forms. Ex, : ' bellows,' 
* scissors,' ' means,' ' annals.' The words ' alms ' and 
' eaves ' were singular in E.I. ; but are now treated as 

Some nouns have the same form for both the singular 
and the plural. Ex, : ' deer,' ' grouse,' ' sheep,' ' salmon,' 
' swine,' ' trout.' 

Other nouns have two plural forms, for two distinct 

Ex. : ' Penny ' has for the plural * pence,' to tell the 
amount ; but ' pennies ' to refer to the distinct coins. ' These 
four "pennies" are old coins, and are worth more than 
" four-pence." ' ' " Dies " are used for coinage, but " dice " 
for gambHng.' Men who are ' brothers ' by birth may be 
called ' brethren,' as members of one society. Several kinds 
of cloth may be collectively called ' cloths ; ' but ' clothes ' 


are garments. We use the word * peas ' with reference to- 
number, but ' pease ' with reference to a Jcind of pulse. 

The names of several sciences, or studies, have a plural 
form with a collective meaning. Ex, : ' mathematics,*^ 
' physics,' ' ethics.' 

Other collective names have only a singular form ; as,. 
' cavalry ' and ' infantry.' 

Many names of quantity and number are commonly 
used without a plural sign. Ex. : * horse ' and ' foot ' (for 
cavalry and infantry), 'pair,' 'brace,' 'dozen,' 'gross,' ' foot,^ 
' fathom,' ' sail.' 

The following are examples of plural compound words t 
— ' blackbirds,' ' courts-martial,' ' sons-in-law,' ' hangers- 
on,' ' good-for-nothings,' ' handfuls of barley.' 

In ' blackbirds ' the noun and the preceding adjective 
make one word. When a particle or a phrase is appended 
to a noun (as in ' hangers-on,' ' sons-in-law,' and ' good-for- 
nothings ') the chief word takes the s. The word 'handfal" 
is a firm compound, and therefore follows the rule for the^ 
plural. [See § 33.] 

Proper names take ' s ' or ' es ' in the plural. 

Or the plural sign is affixed to a descriptive term added 
to a proper name. The following forms are established by 
usage : — ' We met there the Browns and Smiths.' ' " Wright 
Brothers " is the name of the firm.' ' Messrs. Brown and Co.*^ 
' Rylstone, the estate of the ISTortons, was in the midst of the 
barony held by the Cliffords, and the Nortons often impounded 
the Cliffords' deer.' 

Particles, treated as nouns, have plural forms. Ex. : 
' the ups and downs in this life : ' 'pros and cons ; ' ' ayes 
and noesJ 

's is sometimes used instead of s, to mark the plural of 
a word seldom used as a noun. Ex : ' For once the O's and 
Macs were in the right.' (Macaulay.) 

s immediately following a sharp mute keeps the sound 
of s in ' sea.' Ex. : ' stacks.' 



8 immediately following a flat mute has the sound of 
z. Ex.: 'stags.' 

The sound of z is heard also after vowels. Ex. : * rays/ 
' folios/ [See § 2.] 

Some forms of the plural are vestiges of declension in 
E.I., or of forms in E.II. 

The forms 'feet,' 'geese,' 'men,' 'mice,' 'teeth,' represent E.I. plural a- 
formed by vowel-change. Obsolete forms are set in Italic. 




r brothers 
\ brethren 


r houses 
\ housen 




r cows 





r eyes 

\ eyen 





r shoes 
\ shoon 




r hose 
\ hosen 









The plural ending en is a variation of E.I. an. Of E.II.. 

plurals in en only one (oxen) is now commonly used ; but in- 
dialects we still find * eyen^^ ' hosen^^ * housen^^ ' peasen ' (for 

* pease '), and ' shoon.* 

Several foreign nouns retain their native forms in the 

Ex. : Hebrew : — ' cherubim ' {jplwral of ' cherub ') ; ' sera- 
phim' {pi. of 'seraph'). 

GreeK : — ' axes ' (pi. of ' axis ') ; ' bases ' {pi. of ' basis '); 

* ellipses' {pi. of ' ellipsis ') ; 'phenomena' {pi. of 'pheno- 
menon '). 

Latin : — ' apparatus,' ' series ' (with singular and plural 
alike) ; ' foci ' {pi. of ' focus ') ; ' memoranda ' {pi. of * memo- 
randum ') ; ' arcana,' ' addenda,' ' data,' ' errata,' ' strata ' 
(all plurals of nouns ending in nm). 

French : — ' beaux,' ' belles-lettres,' ' messieurs.' 
Italian: — 'banditti' (gangsof thieves); 'dilettanti' (triflers 
in art and literature) ; ' virtuosi ' (men who excel in artistic: 



Some nouns have both foreign and English forms of 
the plural. 


' dogma ' 
' index ' 
' genius ' 
' stamen ' 

^l. ' dogmata ' (and ' dogmas ') 
„ ' indices ' (' indexes ') 
„ * genii ' (geniuses ') 
„ ' stamina ' (' stamens ') 

In several instances the two forms of the plural have 
distinct uses. 

Ux. : The ' genii,' in fairy tales, are fabulous creatures ; 
but great poets are called ' geniuses,' or ' men of genius.' We 
speak of ' stamina ' with regard to a healthful constitution ; 
but of the ' stamens ' in a flower. A book may have two or 
three 'indexes;' but we speak of the 'indices' used in 

The following plural forms may be noticed here : — 














{dryades or 

fish or fishes 


{naiades or 
































r yeomen 
\ yeomanry 
f youths 
\ youth 

Nouns. Case. — The noun has only one inflexion — 's- 
to denote case, or the relation of a noun with another word. 

's is used mostly to denote possession. Ex. : ' John's 
book.' But 's, as an inflexion of nouns of time, serves to 
denote duration. Ex. : ' a week's holiday.' * 



When 's is added, the noun is in ' the possessive case.* 
*s is a contraction of the old case-ending * es,' which had, in 
E.I., uses far more extensive than those of the modem pos- 
sessive 's. 

The noun that should follow the possessive sign is 
sometimes omitted. Ex. : ' St. Paul's ' means ' St. Paul's 

"When a noun ends with a sibilant, the s for the pos- 
sessive is often omitted. Ex. : ' Mars' Hill ; ' ' for goodness' 
sake.' Bnt in many similar cases the s, however harsh its 
sound, is retained, as in * Chambers's Journal,' ' St. James's 

When the plural ends in ' s ' the apostrophe, or sign of 
elision, alone marks the possessive case. 

Ex. : ' The Nortons impounded the Cliffords' stray deer.' 
's is added to other endings of the plural. Ex. : * the 
children's toys.' 

The 's is added to the last of two or more closely con- 
nected nouns. Ex, : ' the tyrant Henry's power.' 

's immediately following a sharp mute has the sound of 
s in ' sea ;' 's after a flat mute has the sound of z. Ex. : ' the 
goat's beard; ' 'the stag's antlers.' [See § 2.] 

The sound of z follows vowels. Ex. : ' Gray's Elegy.' 

*18. PRONOUNS.— E.I. 

The FoBMS of Pronouns, in Modern English, belong to First English^ 
but so great are the alterations made in Uses, that it is impossible to give, 
in all instances, M.E. forms correctly showing the uses of corresponding 
forms in First English. The following are examples of alteration 3 — 


The words 'my,' *thy,* 'our,*^ 
and ' your ' are always placed as Ad- 
jectives -with noxms following, and 
• mine' and 'thine' are sometime* 
so placed. 

The words 'his,' 'her,' and 
' their ' have uses like those of suus 
and its inflexions in Latin. 

Pronouns of the third person 
have no plural forms representing 
hi, h ra, and him. 


The forms min and |>in, lire and 
edwer, as Genitive Cases, have uses 
like those of Tnei, tui, nostri, and 
vestri in Latin. 

The forms his, hire, hira, and 
>ara are Genitives, and have uses 
like those of d-us, eorum, and illo- 
rum in Latin. 

Pronouns of the third person 
have these plural forms : hi, hira, 
and him. 




The plural forms, >a, >ara, and 
J>ani are demonstrative. 

Hwa is not a Eelative Pronoun. 

The Interrogative hwset does 
not serve as an Adjective. 

Pronouns of the first and the 
second person have a Dual Number. 


The plural forms, • they,' * theirs,* 
and ' them ' are not demonstrative. 

' Who ' is a Eelative and Inter- 
rogative Pronoun. 

The Interrogative * what ' serves 
often as an Adjective. 

There are no dual forms in 
Modern English. 

These examples may suflice to show the impossibily of giving such 
modern forms as may indicate the several wses of Pronouns in First English. 
The tables appended give E.I. Declensions of the Personal Pronouns, ic 
( = I), >u ( = thou), lie ( = he), heo ( = she), hit ( = it) ; also the Declen- 
sion of the Demonstrative Pronoun se or )je ( = that), and the forms be- 
longing to the Interrogative hwa (= who?) To the E.I. Pronouns, he, 
>e, and hwa, the forms of several Adverbs — such as ' here,' * there,' and 
^ where '—belong. [See § 12.] 


1st Peeson. 

'N. ic 

G. min 

D. me 
.Acc.ra.Q (mec) 

Plural W^^^^^^') 
lus (usic) 





unc (uncit) 

2nd Peesox. 

N. >u 

B. >e 
\Acc. \>e Oec) 




.eow (edwic) 


^ I mcer 

line (incit) 

3ed Person. 



'K he 
a. his 
I B. him 
\Acc. hiue 



hire (heore) 
hire (heore) 
hi (hig, hire) 



Of all Genders. 

(hi (hig) 

Plural \ ^'* (lieora) 
riurat -i ^.^ (heo-^ 


him (heom) 
I hi (hiff 

THE DEMONSTEATIVE PEONOUN, se, sed,Jj8Bt(= that). 

Masculine Feminine. Neuter. Of ail Genders. 

(N. se (>e) 
Singular \^-^ ^^ 

\Acc. >ane (>one) 









Plural \ ^^'* (*'*^*) 
•^^^^^^ 1 >am O^m) 




Masculine and Feminine. Neuter. 

N. h wa 1 

G. hW8B8l 

D. hwam? (hwaem?) 
Ace. hwonel (hwsene?) 

hwaem 1 

Possessive Adjectives, made from the genitive cases of personal pro- 
nouns (of the first and second persons) are declined in E.I. after the form of 
the strong declension. These adjectives (of -which the modern forms are 
' my,' ' our,' * thy,' ' your,' ' her,' ' their ') are sometimes called ' Possessive 
Pronouns.' The form ' his ' may still be used either with or instead of a 
noun. The pronominal forms ours, yours, theirs, are not found in E.I. In 
Old English the possessive ' his ' serves often as a substitute for the 
possessive inflexion of a noun. 

E.I. had no peculiar form for the Relative Pronoun. The indeclinable 
demonstrative \>e was used as a relative, either alone or with another pro- 
noun (personal or demonstrative). Hence we have the use of that as a 
restrictive and definitive relative. In M.E. the uses of ' that ' and ' who ' 
have been confused. 

' WTio,' the Relative Pronoun, is an altered form of the E.I. Interro- 
gative, hwa. Of this pronoun hwilc ( = * which ') is a compound form. 
' JVhat ' (from hwset, the neuter of hwa) has now mostly a meaning 
equivalent to ' that which,' and may be used either as a pronoun or as an 
adjective. The modern restriction of ' who,' as applied to persons, and of 
' which,' as applied to inanimate objects, was unknown in old times. Poets, 
for the sake of brevity and elegance, often use the form ' whose ' without 
reference to persons, and this is historically correct. 

E.I. has no Reflexive Pronoun to express an act reverted on the agent. 
For this purpose the personal pronoun was used. Ex. : ' pset folc hit rests ' 
( = • The people rested themselves ') ; ' Turneth gin ( = sow) to me ' ( = ' Turn 
yourselves to me '). Here the verb is used as reflexive, and the pronoun giu 
(for edw) is in the accusative case following a transitive verb. 

To give emphatic expression to a personal or a demonstrative pronoun 
the adjective sylf (= 'self') is often used. Ex. : ' "We sylfe gehyrdon.' 
( = « We ourselves heard '). But sylf is also treated as a noun in E.I., as we 
find ' self treated by Chaucee and Shakespeake. 

In E.II. the demonstrative adjective ^yond ' (or * yon£\ sometimes classed 
with pronouns, was introduced. In E.I. the word geond was an adverb 
and a preposition. The adjective ' same ' is still used to give emphasis to 
a demonstrative. Its force is increased by combination in the word 
* sdf-same.' 


Pronouns of the following classes are more or less 
inflected in M.E. : — Personal and Compound-Personal, De- 
monstrative, Kelative, and Interrogative. 


Excepting the Nominative — which serves as a Vocative in exclamations 
— all cases of nouns and pronouns in E.I., as in other synthetic languages, 
are called ' oblique.' In Modern English, names of oblique cases — except- 
ing ' the Possessive ' — have mostly become so far vague that they do not 
clearly denote uses. For this reason such names as * Genitive,' ' Dative,' 
and 'Accusative' (or 'Objective'; are hardly noticed here in treating 
modern forms, though it must be granted that vestiges of ' the Dative ' in 
E.I. remain in some modern uses of pronouns. [^See §§ 47 and 49.] 

Personal Pronouns of the first and second persons 
have the following forms : — 

1st Person. 2nd Person. 1st Person. 2nd Person. 


ye (or you) 

' /,' the pronoun of the first person, and ' thou,'' of the 
second person, have no inflexions with respect to gender. 

In Modem English ' my,' ' thy,' ' our,' and ' your,' serve as adjectives, 
but are not used as min, ]jin, ure, and eower were used for the Grenitiv& 
in E.I. 

Mine and thine are often used without nouns following. 

Ex. : ' These books are mine.' Here ' mine ' is a possessive 
pronoun. In poetry mine and thine (instead of my and thy) 
are used with nouns. My and thy are pronouns with respect 
to formation ; but are used with nouns, and not instead of 

' Me ' and ' thee ' follow verbs and prepositions. Ex. : 

* He goes before me, and will guide me.* 

The preposition ' to ' is often understood and not expressed before * me,* 
as in the following examples : — ' methrnks ' ( = it seems to me), ' give me 
the pen, " show me the book.' These are examples of ' the Dative Case ' in 
E.I., which was represented hj ' me' without a preposition. 

Old authors often use 'me' where we should now say 'for me.' 
Ex. : ' Knock 7ne at this gate ; ' instead of, ' Knock for me.' This is 
another use of the Dative Case, and is not unlike the familiar form of 
request in ' Come, play us a tune.' 

The personal pronoun ' thou,' is still found in poetry and in forms of 
prayer, but has long been obsolete in conversation. 

' Oui's ' and ' yours ' are used with reference to owners, but 

* mills ' and ' thine ' are used with reference to one owner. 
Ex. : * These books are ours ; ' ' those books are mine.' 

' Us ' may represent either the object or the dative case, or 
may foUow a preposition. Ex. I. : 'He led us.' II. ' He gave 
us a lesson.' III. 'He will go with us.' 

' You ' is placed as the subject, or as the object, or after a 
preposition. Ex.: I. 'You write well.' II. 'He will guide 
you.' III. ' He will go with you.' 


* Ye,' in Old English, was used for the subject, and * you * 
for the object, or as a dependent nonn following a preposition. 
Numerous examples of distinct uses for ' ye ' and ' you ' may 
be found in the English Bible, \_8ee Matt, v., 11, 12 ; 21, 22 ; 
33, 34] 

These distinct uses of ^ye^ and ^you^ were mostly neg- 
lected by dramatists of the Elizabethan age. They often 
placed ' you ' as the subject and ^ye' as the object. In con- 
versation the latter form is now obsolete. 

The pronoun of the third person has, in the Singular, 
the three forms : ' he ' (masculine), ' she ' (feminine), and 
' it ' (neuter) ; but the Plural form, ' they,' serves for all 

The forms ' he,' ' she,' and ' they ' serve as Subjects. 

The forms ' him,' 'her,' and 'them ' serve as Objects, 
and as dependent words following prepositions ; but ' it ' 
may serve as Subject, or as Object, or as a dependent 
word following a preposition. \_See §§ 47 and 49.] 

Some writers on grammar treat the forms ' his,' ' her,' * its,' and ' their ' 
as * Possessive Cases ' of ' he,' * she,' ' it,' and ' they.' By other writers 
' his,' ' her,' * its,' and * their ' are called ' Possessive Pronouns.' These 
names have reference to the stems to which the said forms belong. But, 
when classified with respect to modern tcse, these forms may be treated as 
adjectives. In order to show at once both their origin and their zcse, 'his,' 

• her,' * its,' and ' their ' — like ' my,' * thy,' * our,' and * your ' — are sometimes 
called Adjective-Pronouns. It is with reference to modem use that such 
words as ' our,' ' your,' and ' their ' are here called adjectives, while ' ours,' 

* yours,' and ' theirs ' are classed with possessive pronouns. A tabular 
form can hardly show at once the historical relations and the syntactical 
uses of all words called pronouns ; for some words that were pronouns in 
E.I. serve as adjectives in M.E. 

The following words are used with nouns, or as adjec- 
tives : — ' my,' ' thy,' ' her,' ' its,' ' our,' ' your,' ' their.' 

Possessive Pronouns, — The following words are used 
instead of nouns, or as possessive pronouns : — ' mine,' 
' thine,' ' his,' ' hers,' ' ours,' ' yours,' ' theirs.' 

The possessive form ^his* may be used either vdth or 
instead of a norni. Ex. : * That was his book.' ' That book 
was his.* 

Demfhonstrative Pronouns have the following forms for 
the singular and the plural : — 


Singular. Plural. 

this these 

that those 

' F^Oj' the Eelative Pronoun, has the following forms 
in both the singular and the plural : — 

who whose whom 

' Who' when employed as an Interrogative Prononn, has still the forms 
* whose ' and ' whom.' Ex. : * Whose is the fault ? ' 'To whom shall we go ? ' 

' Whose ' mostly refers to persons, but in poetry may refer to inanimate 
objects. Ex. : ' . . . brown groves whose shadow,' etc. (Shakespeabe.) 
' A holy river, on whose banks are found sweet pastoral flowers.' (Wobds- 


The Pronouns ' who ? ' ' whose ? ' ' whom ? ' ' which ? ' 
^ what ? ' and the compounds ' whoever ? ' ' whatever ? ' 
when used in asking questions, are called Interrogative. 

The Indefinite Pronouns ' one,' ' another,' and ' other' 
are used and inflected as nouns ; bub ' another ' ( = one 
other) has no plural form. 

* Teach me to feel another's woe, 

To hide the fault I see ; 
That mercy I to others show, 
That mercy show to me.' 

* One ' is often used as a noun. Ex. : ' One of these little ones, which 
"believe in me.' (Matth. xviii. 6.) \^8ee § 44.] 
' Enoiigh ' has no plural form. 
The possessive forms ' eithers ' and ' eitheres ' are found in old authors. 

Without the aid of inflexion, the indefinite pronouns 
(' each other ' and ' one another '), when used without a 
stop placed between them, and following a transitive verb, 
serve to express a reciprocal action — an act in which the 
agent and the object change places. Ex. : ' Love one 

Compound Personal Pronouns have the following 
forms for the singular and the plural : — 










*19. ADJECTIVES.— E.I., E.II. 

Adjectives in E.I. (as in Latin) agree with the nouns to ■which they 
Tespectively belong in gender, number, and case. In Latin the noun puer, if 
used in the genitive singular, must be changed to piten, and the adjective 
bonus, if placed in concord with puerl, must be changed to boni. Like the 
noun, the adjective is now of the masculine gender, singular number, and 
genitive case. This likeness of form between the adjective and the noun 
to which it refers is called ' Concord.^ In Modern English the reference of 
the adjective is shown by its 'position, and not by a change of form. 

In Latin the reference must be expressed in the form, and this rule 
prevails mostly in E.I. But here concord of gender, number, and case is 
not completely denoted by the second adjective, in constructions where 
a demonstrative or possessive is prefixed to a qualifying adjective, as in 
the following example : — 'Seo wees ]?8BS godan monnes gifu' ('It was the 
gift of that good man '). Here the genitive case is marked by the demon- 
strative J>8BS. The adjective godan has the form of the second, or weak, 
declension ; also called De/wtYe, with respect to the use ot the Demonstrative. 
In the following phrase an example is given of an adjective inflected accord- 
ing to the first, or strong, declension ; otherwise called Indefinite : — * folc 
heardes modes ' (' people of stubborn temper'). Here the neuter adjective 
has the form of the genitive singular in the first, or strong, declension, and 
this form shows that the adjective belongs to modes. 

Adjectives in E.I. have inflexions, to mark more or less distinctly 
gender, number, and case. The more distinctive inflexions belong to the 
first, or ' strong,' declension, as the appended tables show. 


E.I. 1st Declension 

E.I. 2nd Declension. 

Masculine. Feminine. 


Masculine. Feminine. Neuter. 

s^ ( blind 1 blind 



blinde i blinde 

iJ blindes 






1" blindum 
<2 I blindne 











- Mas. Fern, and Neut. 

^ ( blinde 


blindu j 


e J blindra 




^1 blindum 




"^ I blinde 




Besides inflexions to show concord, adjectives in E.I. have the endings 
er and est for degrees of comparison. 

The comparative suffix is er (ir, or, ur, ar). When placed in con- 
cord with a noun, an adjective of the comparative degree belongs to the 
second, or ' weak,' declension. For heard (hard) the comparative (if uncon- 
tracted) would have these forms for the nominative case singular : — 

Mas. Fern. 


heardera beardere 


But these forms are mostly contracted. 

Mas. Fern. 


heardra heardre 




The superlative suffix is est (ist, ost). 

"When placed in concord with a noun, the superlative may have either 
the ' weak ' or the ' strong ' form of declension. The superlative of swi5 
(strong) has these forms in the second, or weak, declension : — 

Mas. Fern. Neut. 

swi^esta swi^este swi^este 

The corresponding forms for the superlative of Strang (strong) arft- 
examples of contraction with modulation of the vowel : — 

streugsta strengste strepgste 

Vowel-changes are found in the comparison of other adjectives. 
Ex.: Pos. Comp. Super. 

aid, or eald (old) yldra yldesta 

geong (young) gyngra gyngesta 

lang (long) lengra lengsta 

Several adjectives in E.I. have anomalous, and others have defective^ 
degrees of comparison. 

Sa:. : Pos. 



forma (first) 


fyrmesta (first) 

mycel (much) 



yfel (bad) 




neara (nearer) 

n^hsta (nexta) 

In the first example (forma) a word already superlative takes a second 
superlative, ending m-est, which, in the variation m-ost, looks like the 
adverb * most.' The m here belongs to an older Grothic and English form 
of the superlative — ma — found in hinduma ( = extreme, or last), and in 
other words. The old superlative form, having been used as a positive, took 
a suffix to make a new superlative. Thus to hindu-ma is related hindu- 
m-isto, a word found in the Gothic version of the Gospels made by Ulfilas 
in the fourth century. [See Matth. viii. 12.] 

Possessive Adjectives, formed from the genitive cases of the personal 
pronouns (of the first and second persons), are declined as adjectives having 
the strong form of declension. 

Ex. : *Ic fare to minum faeder ' (' I will go to my father '). 

The possessive here given in the dative case is formed from the pro- 
nominal genitive min (= the Latin mei). 

Possessive Adjectives retained in the earlier times of E.II. some traces 
of their original declension ; but when distinctive forms were efiaced, such 
adjectives were made like genitive cases of personal pronouns. These 
adjectives have consequently been mostly classified as 'possessive prO' 
nouns' The name refers, however, to their origin and not to their use. 

* Adjectives. E.II. — In Old English the two forms of E.I. for the 
declension of adjectives fell into ruins before Chaucer's time. 

One of the endings (e) was used as a substitute for others, served some- 
times to mark the plural, and sometimes indicated the use of a qualifying 
adjective with some preceding definitive word, which might be the or this, 
or a possessive form. Examples of this definitive use of a final e may be 
found in the opening lines of Chaxtcer's prologue to his ' Canterbury 

This final e was, in the fourteenth century, sounded at the end of many 


•words. Without its sound many lines in Chaucee's verse would be de- 
prived of harmony. The final e was elided before a vowel and before a 
word beginning with h. 

Traces of vowel-change in the comparison of adjectives were long 
retained in Old English. An innovation was made by shortening, in com- 
parison, the vowel of the positive. Thus depe (deep), used instead of 
deop, had for the comparative and the superlative depper and deppest. 
Many words were treated in the same manner by. Langland and other 
writers of the fourteenth century. The inflexions er and est were freely 
added to both English and Eoman words, and no distinctions were made 
respecting euphony, or the length of words, or their terminations. The 
analytical forms ' more ' and ' most ' were often used as substitutes for 
inflexions, but without any observance of such rules as have been laid 
down by modern grammarians. Double comparatives and superlatives 
were, in Old English, freely employed in such forms as ' most clennest ' 
(for ' cleanest '), ' more unhappyery ' mx)st unkindest! Such forms were not 
condenmed in Shakespeabe's time. One of the class is retained in the 
Bible of the seventeenth century (Acts xxvi. 5), where we read of 'the 
Tnost straitest sect ' of Pharisees. 

In Modern English hardly any vestiges of the two declensions in E.I. 
remain. There may, however, be a trace of the weak declension in our 
phrase * the olden time,' and a trace of vowel-change in comparison remains 
in ' old, elder, eldest' With these slight exceptions the adjective has now 
no inflexion save the er and est for comparison. While these suffixes 
are retained the analytical mode of indicating comparison, by using the 
adverbs ' mx)re ' and ' most,' is also freely employed. 

Kules intended to restrict the use of er and est are^ given in many 
English Grammars, but are not generally obeyed. Soriie of the more 
concise of these rules allow the use of suffixes with words of the following 
classes : — 

(1) Monosyllables ; (2) Dissyllables ending with le or y, preceded by 
a Consonant. 

Another rule would forbid the use of an inflexion after any one of the 
endings ain, al, ate, ed, ent, id, ing, ous ; also after compound words 
made with ful, less, and some. This extensive rule is not generally accepted. 
Inflexions are often added to words ending in ed, el, er, and ant, and 
such words as ' handsomest,' ' pleasantest,' ' solidest,' are found in good 

The law that prohibits the use of double comparison is often broken, 
but in many cases the error is logical and not formal. Inflexions or 
adverbs of comparison are used with words that are incapable of com- 
parison. Ex. : ' the loneliest place,' 'the most unmeasured abuse,' * a most 
interminable discourse,' ' perfectest joy,' and ' extremest pain.' To make 
clear the error implied in such phrases the word ' inflnite ' may be named. 
It is incapable of comparison, and its true meaning should prohibit its fre- 
quent use as an adjective in the positive degree. For all ordinary purposes, 
•the weaker word ' indefinite * might serve as a substitute for ' infinite* 



Adjectives used to denote quantity and quality have 
three degrees of comparison — the Positive, the Compara- 
tive, and the Superlative. 

The Comparative and the Superlative are formed by 
the inflexions er and est. 

When an adjective ends in e the inflexions are reduced to- 
r and st. Ex. : ' wide, wider, widest.' 

A final y is changed to i before er and est. Ex. : ' heavy > 
heavier, heaviest.' 

Inflexions are added to words of one syllable, and ta 
dissyllables ending like ' able ' or ' heavy,' or having tha 
accent on the second syllable. 

The words more and most are commonly used for the 
comparative and the superlative of adjectives containing 
two or more syllables. JEx. : — 


more careful 

most carefal 


more diligent 
more iadustrious 

most diligent 
most industrious 

Rules for distinct uses of ' er ' and ' est,' and their sub- 
stitutes ^more^ and ' 7nost,' are neither old nor well observed.. 
They have been mostly dictated by a care for euphony. 
Milton uses ' sdlidest,' and longer words ending in ' est. 
Such words as 'pleasanter' and 'handsomest' are common 

Many adjectives are incapable of comparison. Fx.. 
' square.' 

Double superlatives seem useless, but they are often found 
m the works of good English writers. Ex. : ' chiefest, 
' extremest.' 

To express degrees of diminution the words ' less ' and 
' least ' are employed. £x. : ' less severe,' ' least useful.' 

To add strength to the Comparative, ' far ' and ' by far '' 
are used, and the Superlative is aided by the phrase ' of all.*' 
Ex. : ' the greatest of all wonders.' 



The Latin comparative adjectives ^junior,' ^ senior,^ etc., 
are not followed by ' than.' 

The following adjectives have irregular forms of com- 
parison. Some words ending in ' most ' have arisen from 
confusion of the adverb ' most ' with the old double super- 
lative m-est, of which one variation = m-ost. 










far, feorr (adverb) 
forS (adverb) 

forme (E.II.) 




r foremost 

t first 











later (latter) 
less (lesser) 

latest (last) 


mo (E.II.) 




up (ad/verb) 

ut, out (adverb) 

ut, out (adverb) 

older (elder) 

nearest (next) 
oldest (eldest) 
upmost (uppermost) 
utmost (outermost) 
utmost (uttermost) 

' Many ' serves as an adjective and as a pronoun. There 
is no etymological ground for calling ' more ' the comparative 
of ' many ; ' but more and most are used with reference to 
number as well as to quantity. 

*20. VERBS.— E.I., E.II. 

That part of a Verb that remains when inflexions are taken away is 
called the Stem. 

Inflexions of Verbs are changes of form, serving to denote changes of 
Mood, Tense, Number, and Person. 

Mood means manner or mode, 
m, Tv,« :4.- « \ makes no assertion. Ex.: 'to write.' 

ThelnSrve ^««1^^^«- ^. :' he writes.' 

The Imperative f^oo^ of a verb- commands. Ex.: 'come!' 

The Su^unctive I "^^l ^^PJf « ^^^^^ ^^^^^ ^^? ^^tnrity. 

*' '' V ^ar.: 'if he cowie to-morrow. 

Tense means time. 


Two tenses — Present and Past — are denoted by inflexions. 
Ex. : Present : ic onginiie = I begin. 
Past : ic ongau = I began. 

In E.I. the form of the Present is often used for the Future. Ex. : ' Ic 
fare to minum feeder' = 'I go to my father ; ' but it mai/ mean, 'I will 
go to my father.' 

When no auxiliary (or helping) verb is used a tense is called Simple. 

The verbs ' have ' and ' shall ' are sometimes called * auxiliaries,' 
because they give aid in the formation of tenses. 

Ex. : Future : ' I shall find.* 
Perfect : ' I have found.' 

These tenses are called Compound tenses. 

Number.— A verb is used in the Singular when one person or thing is 
the subject of which we speak, but in the Plural when we speak of more 
than one. Ex. : ' he speaks ;' 'they speak.' 

Persons. — In each number there are three persons. 

1. I speak 

2. Thou speakest 

3. He speaks 

The Infinitive Mood has no distinctions of Number and Person. The 
forms in this Mood belong historically to verbs, and are therefore called 
' verbal ;' but they tell nothing, and therefore cannot serve as verbs to give 
union to the parts of a sentence. 

The Conjugation of a Verb is a plan showing the several forms of one 
Verb, when used with reference to variations of Mood, Tense, Number, and 
Person. "When no helping verb is used the conjugation is Simple ; when 
helping verbs (such as ' have ' and ' shall ') are used, the conjugation is 

There are two Conjugations formed without using any auxiliary verb. 

I. The Old Conjugation, otherwise called ' Strong.' 

II. The New Conjugation, otherwise called ' Weak.' 

Old — Present : ic finde = I find. 
Past : ic fand = I found. 

New — Present : ic lisele = I heal. 

Past: ic hael-de = Iheal-ed. 

The Old Conjugation makes the Past by a change of the vowel. 
The New Conjugation makes the Past by adding de. 
There is another distinction. To form a Perfect tense we use ' have ' 
followed by a form called the ' Perfect Participle.' 
Ex. : ic haebbe begunnen = I have begun. 
ic hsebbe haeled = I have healed. 

The Perfect Participle with ' had ' forms the tense called Pluperfect. 
Ex. : ' ic hiaefde begunnen ' = I had begun. 

Begunnen, a Perfect Participle of the Old Conjugation, ends in en. 

Heeled, a Perfect Participle of the New Conjugation, ends in d. 

The Old Conjugation in E.I. is, with respect to the changes made in 
vowels, divided into eight classes of verbs. Seven are noticed here. The 
eighth has hardly any representative in Modern English. 

The seven classes in E.I. are in M.E. still represented more or less by 

VERBS. — E.I., E.II. 89 

Terbs of the classes to which < begin,' 'bear,' 'bid,' 'take,' 'drive,' 
♦freeze,' and 'blow' belong; but the vowels, in the vnodern forms, do not 
always correspond with those of the old verbs. Vowels are more changeable 
than consonants. 

For the piirpose of committing to memory the forms of modem strong 
verbs, the classification here given has no great value ; but it will be found 
usefal by all who would study the history of the English Language. 

In the following table, the more characteristic changes of vowels in E.I. 
are given, but several variations that cannot be concisely defined are 
omitted. In the classes numbered 4th and 7th the Past has, in E.I., no 
vowel-change to distinguish the Plural from the Singular ; but in the other 
<;lasses the Plural in the Past has its distinct vowels. 

Present Past Perfect Participle 

(Abbreviation = Pr.) (Abb. = P.) (Abb. = P.P.) 

1st Class. i a (P^. u) u 

Ex.: beginne begauu (begunnon) begunnen 

M.E. begin began begun 

Here the vowel-change remains in M.E. ; but it does not serve to make 
•distinct the Plural of the Past. 

2nd Class. e (or i) a (PI. ae) o 

Ex. : bere bar (baeron) boren 

M.E. bear bare (or bore) bom 

bear (carry) bore borne 

The distinct forms of the Perfect Participle, as used to denote two mean- 
ings of the verb, are modem. 

3rd Class, e (or i) a (PI. sb) e (or i) 

Ex. : bidde bad (baedou) bedeu 

M.E. bid bade bidden (or bid) 

4th Class. a 6 a 

Ex. : tace toe tacen 

M.E. take took taken 

5th Class. i & (PI. i) 1 

Jpjc. : drife draf (driifon) drifen 

M.E. drive drove driven 

The diphthong sound of long i (as * eye ') in * drive ' is modern. In the 
E.I. form, drife, the sound of i = ee in ' feet.' 

6th Class. e6 ea (PL u) o 

Ex.: fredse freas (fruron) froren 

M.E. freeze froze firozen 

e6 and ea are diphthongs in E.I. 

7th Class. 8, \ ^ /& 

ek(etc.)J ^ \ea 

Ex.: blawe bledw blawen 

M.E. blow blew blown 

It seems probable that in E.I. the aw in this verb and in others of the 
7th class had a sound like that of ow in ' tower.' 

E.I. and E.II. Verbs of the Old Conjugation, here arranged in seven 



classes, are sometimes collectively given under the general title * Irregular 
Verbs,' which means only that they are not inflected like the New Verbs 
* praise ' and ' call.' Old Verbs thus given as ' Irregular ' are, moreover, 
mixed with contracted and other forms of the New Conjugation — such as 
' say,' ' pay,' * tell,' and • hear.' 

A glance at the Old Verbs in the 1st, 4th, 5th, and 7th classes suffices 
to show that they cannot be truly described as 'Irregular' in E.I., and, in 
a later section, we shall see that in M.E. Old Verbs of the classes numbered 
1st, 4th, 6th, and 7th still retain a considerable likeness to their original 
forms in E.I. The forms of E.II. may be generally described as transi- 
tional, and, in several verbs, are made perplexing by their great variety ; 
for writers of E.II. maintained, with respect to spelling, unbounded freedom. 

Signs and abbreviations found in the appended tables have the following 
uses : — 

Pr. = Present (1st Person Singular) Indicative. P. = Past (1st 
Person S.) Indicative. P.Pl. = Past Plural Indicative. P.P. = Perfect 
Participle. The dash ( — ) after the Past S. indicates that no vowel-change 
takes place in the Past PI. The sign ... indicates that a verb, or a form, 
is not found in E.I., or in E.II. For example, the verbs ' fling,' * thrive,*^ 
and ' crow ' are not found in E.I. The abbreviation etc. indicates that 
several variations are found in E.II., or that some variation exists in E.I. 

For the pronunciation of some E.I. letters see § 2. The final short e of 
the Present {1st Person Singular) mag be sounded as e in the word ' met.'' 

Old Conjugation, E.I. and E.II. — 1st Class. 

M fginne 
f4 \onginne 

E.II. beginne 















bound (etc.) 





















(ding ( = 

[This verb has still old forms in the Scottish dialect.] 








flang (etc.) 


drunken (etc.) 














VERBS. — B.I., E.II. 














malt \ 











lery: The conj 

agation of hringan in E.I.?] 




ran {etc.) 


runnen {etc) 

runnen {etc.) 





































slang {etc.) 


















sprang (e^(?.) 


















stong {etc.) 





















sworn "\ 








8 won gen 









wunden {etc.) 





















3ife {etc.) 





wan : won 




bar {etc.) 





stal "1 











at : set {etc.) 

3af {etc.) 




lay {^tc.) 





2nd Glass. 









sworen 1 
sweren / 

camon {etc.) 

3rd Class. 


eton {etc.) 

3aven (etc.) 


geten {etc.) 


laien {etc) 






born > 
borne J 









comen "1 
cum J 




eten {etc.) 

3iven {etc.) 

goten 1 
geten > 







lain {etc.) 





{lie dotm) 

YERBS. — B.I., B.II. 



se (etc.) 

sah {etc.) 

sawon (etc.) 
sawen (etc.) 

sewen {etc.) 
seen {etc.) 





sat : saet 




spreco (etc.) 



spak (etc.) 



sprecen {etc.) 








trad: trod 

traden {etc.) 

troden "1 









4th Class. 





took 1 


taken {etc.) 












grof \ 















schok \ 



shaked / 







schapen \ 
shapid J 





sehof ^ 























5th Class. 
















\ rise) 


ras : roos 

risen : resin 




bad {etc.) 





f {wait for, 
\ endure) 

[The modern form ' abide ' 

= stay.-] 













chyd 1 

chidden \ 
chyd / 

chidden \ 
chid / 











rive: rife 

raf : rof 





























smiten {etc.) 





strad 1 
strode J 







strof 1 

streven "1 
striveden / 




throf : thraf 










wrot > 
writ J 


writen 1 


VERBS. — E.I., E.II. 


6th CiASB. 




fres \ 







cheas "1 
ches J 


chosen "1 





les: lees 

luren : loren 

7th Class. 


loren : lorn \ 
lost / 





blew {etc.) 








bet : bette 



beten : bett 



knowe {etc.) 


knew {etc.) 


























holde {etc.) 


held {etc.) 








hew {etc.) 



hewen {etc.) 








meow : mew 









sew : sowide 


so wen "1 




threw {etc.) 




As examples of E.II. verbs (of several 
the following may be noticed : — bersten {burst), 

having mam/ variations 
eaten {eat)^ fehten {fight). 



fleon {fiee), healden {hold), hebben {heave), laughen {laugh), liggen {lie- 
down), rinnen {run), schawen {show). 

Many * strong ' verbs in E.I. have, in the course of eight or nine centu- 
ries, become obsolete, and many have been wholly or partly transferred to 
the New Conjugation. Others have passed over from one class of the Old 
to another. The following, belonging to the fourth class in E.I., belong 
now to the New Conjugation : — 








wax {=grow) 

The verb 'swear* soon passed over from the fourth to the second class. 
Its forms in early times included the following : — 




sworen "1 
(swaren) j 



These two verbs have been transferred from the fotcrth to the seventh 
class : — 



The following are 








draw {= drag) 


cleave { = split) 

fly {as a bird) 


seeth { = boil) 

The eighth class in E.I. may be called extinct, for it is but slightly 
represented in the present tense of one verb — ' hang.' So far as this 
retains the form ' hung ' (in P. and P.P.) it belongs to the first class of 
Old Verbs ; but it is now treated mostly as a verb of the New Conjugation. 
The E.I. forms of the eighth class are shown in the following examples : — 










Simple Forms of Conjugation. — It has already been noticed that when 
no auxiliary, or helping, verb is used, the conjugation of a verb is called 
Simple, and that when any auxiliary verb is used the conjugation is Com- 

Ex. : * he wrote ' is a Simple tense, but ' he has written ' is a Compound 

The treatment of the Compound Conjugation is postponed. 

Verbs in E.I. had some peculiar forms used in the Subjunctive Mood, 
but those forms are lost in M.E. 

Of the forms of the Indicative that remain in M.E. three — marked 
•with * in the appended table — are obsolete in conversation. 

YERBS. — E.I., E.II. 


The appended table gives, in E.I. and M.E., the simple forma of bindan 
-a verb belonging to the Ist class of the Old Conjugation. 
The Subjunctive Mood is omitted. [See § 23.] 




Present Tense. M.E. 




ic bind-e 
i)U bind-est 

he bind-et; 

* thou bindesf 
f he binds or 
\* bindeth 



ge ), bind-a-S 


we 1 

ye [bind 





ic band 
l>u bund-e 
he band 

I bound 
* thou bounds st 
he bound 



ge \ bnndon 


we -1 

ye V bound 

they J 

Sing, bind (iiwcZ) | Plur. bind-E'S {bind) 


Verbal Noun, bind-an (to bind) 
Gerund, (to) bind-anne (to 

Imp. Part, bind-ende {binding) 
Perf. Part, bund-en {bound) 

E.II. gradually introduced changes in forms of conjugation, mostly 
leading towards a general disuse of inflexions. In the Northern Dialect, 
the ending es, or one of its variations (is and ys) took the place of est 
in the 2nd person Singular, of eth in the 3rd person Singular, and of 
a^ in all persons Plural of the Indicative Mood, Present Tense. In the 
Midland Dialect en was used as a substitute for atS in First English, and 
in the South Dialect a'S was represented by eth. 

edest (or ed'st), used as the ending of the 2nd person Singular (Past), 
belonged in E.I. to the New Conjugation ; but was sometimes afl&xed to 
verbs of the Old Conjugation in E.II., and so produced some harshly- 
sounding forms— such as ' hound' st.' The Northern Dialect cast off the 'st 
in the 2nd person Singular (Past) of weak verbs. 

In the Imperative Mood eth (with variations) was long retained as the 
plural ending. Its loss leaves only one form in the Imperative Mood. 

an, the ending of the Infinitive (or Verbal Noun), was changed to en ; 
also to e. 

anne (enne or ene), the ending of the Gerund — or the Verbal Noun 
H ^ 


dependent on a preposition — was lost in the course of transitions made in 
the fourteenth century. 

In E.I. the form of the Gerund followed the particle to, and was used, 
in the first place, to express a purpose. Ex. : * A sower went out to sow' 
Here, to translate ' to sow ' into E.I., the Gerund to sawenne must be used. 

The fwrm ending in anne, etc., was also used in E.I. to express (like the 
Latin Gerundive) duty, destination and obligation. Ex. : ' He is a man 
to he lovedJ ' This fact ought to be known.' Here the forms to lufienne 
and to witanne would be used in E.I. 

The form ending in anne, etc., was also used to follow a verb of vague 
or defective meaning — for example, the verb ' begin.' Ex. : ' He began to 
Jiee away.' 'He began to steal.' In E.I. the forms to fleonne and to 
stelenne might be used in these sentences ; but the verb ' begin ' might 
also be followed by the Infinitive. Ex. : • He ongan hi set >^re s^ laeran ' 
(' He began to teach them beside that lake '). ' His feeder ongan hyne 
biddan ' (' His father began to entreat him'). 

The name ' Dative,' sometimes given to the Gerund, has reference to 
its form (as following to), but does not describe its several uses. 

The imperfect participle, having the suf&x ende, in the Midland Dialect, 
with inde (Southern) and ande or and (mostly Northern), often changed 
inde to inge and ing in the thirteenth century, and the substitution of 
inge and ing for the older forms was confirmed in the fourteenth century, 
though the older forms did not then disappear. Chaitceb speaks of men 
who ' came in ' lej^and' {i.e. ' leaping '). 

en, the ending for the Perfect Participle of the Old Conjugation, was 
long retained in E.II., and still remains in such modern forms as ' driven,' 
'forsaken,' 'frozen,' 'shaken,' 'taken,' and 'written;' and in the obsolete 
or half-obsolete forms, 'baken,' 'graven,' ' smitten,' 'stricken,' and 'waxen.' 

The process of weakening, contracting, and casting away the en of the 
P.P. began early in E.II., but went on slowly. Some strong verbs were 
made weak. In others the form of the P.P. was contracted, as in the ex- 
ample ' sown,' used instead of ' sawen ' or ' sowen.' In other verbs the loss 
of final n was followed by the loss of final e. Meanwhile vowel-change 
for the Past Plural of verbs was gradually more and more neglected, and 
consequently the Past and the P.P. of some verbs were made identical in 
form, as in the example ' bound.' In the Elizabethan age the Past was 
often used instead of the P.P., as by Shakespeare, in the words 'arose ' 
(for ' arisen '), ' drove ' (for ' driven '), ' smote ' (for ' smitten '), and 
"wrote' (for 'written'). 

In M.E. the Past, in some verbs, retains the oldest vowel of the 
Singular ; in others that of the Plural. In the examples ' bare ' and ' bore ' 
the vowels of the Past (Singular) and the P.P. are both retained. Some- 
times the oldest vowel of the Singular (Past), though obsolete in conver- 
sation, is retained in poetry. Ex.: 'brake' (for 'broke'), ' drave' (for 
' drove'), and 'sprang' (for 'sprung') are found in Shakespeare, and in 
other poets are found such old forms as ' sank ' and ' shrank,' used instead of 
* sunk ' and ' shrunk.' 

The first result of gradual decay in inflexions, during the long time 
^hen various forms of E.II. were written, was to make a few endings— 
mostly en, es, and e — serve for several distinct uses, en, for example, 
was employed, in Midland dialects, as a verbal ending in the Plural of both 
Present and Past (Indicative), in the Plural of the Subjunctive, in the Infini- 
tive or Verbal Noun, and in the Perfect Participle, while it served, moreover, 
to form the plural of some nouns. It was but natural that an ending of 
-which the uses were so vague should at last be cast aside. 

YERBS. — E.I., E.II. 


In First English the prefix ge was placed before verbs, and sometimes 
modified their meanings. In Old English this ge (softened in sound and 
reduced to the form of y or i) served mostly as the prefix of the P.P., and, 
without changing its meaning, made it distinct from the Past, when vowel- 
changes had passed away. This prefix y or i — freely used by Chauceb in 
the fourteenth century — was afterwards used as an archaism in poetry by 
Sackviij^b, Spbnske, and by later authors. It is now altogether obsolete 
in prose, and almost in verse, though ifc may be found here and there in 
modem verse — for example, in Thomson's ' Castle of Indolence ' and in 
Btron's ' Childe Harold.' 

In Modern English the results of decay in verbal inflexions are these : — 

"We have not one distinct form left for the Subjunctive Mood. It has 
been supposed that ' wert ' (2nd person of the Singular, Past, in the conju- 
gation of ' be') is a Subjunctive form; but it is often found in sentences 
where the meaning is cleanly Indicative. 

We have lost en, the ending of the Infinitive or Verbal Noun, anne, etc., 
in the Gerund, and en in many Perfect Participles. 

In the Indicative Mood the endings est (Present) and ed'st (Past) are 
retained in literature, but are obsolete in conversation, eth for the 3rd 
person Singular (Present) belongs to archaic literature. The Plural has no 

In the simple conjugation of a strong verb we have, therefore, only 
seven or eight distinct forms — seven, if the verb is like ' bind '; eight, if, 
like ' write,' it retains a distinct form of the P.P. Of these seven or eight 
endings, three — est, ed'st, and eth — are obsolete in conversation. 

In the simple conjugation of a weak verb we have only four distinct 
forms, if we omit those obsolete in conversation. 

The appended table of verbal forms in E.I., followed by the forms of 
E.II. and M.E., will serve to convey some general notion of the process by 
which our verlDal inflexions have been reduced to their present scanty 






1. ic bind-e 

2. }>u bind-est 

1. bind-e 

2. bind-est (and -es, -is, or 

-ys in Northern dia- 

1. I bind 

2. thou bindest 


3. he bind.e« 

1. we) 

2. ge bind-a-S 

3. b 

3. ■ 

ind-eth or bint, and in 

Northern dialects bind- 

es (-is, -ys) 

bind-eth, bind-e ; with 

bind-es (-is, -ys) in 

Northern dialects, 

and bind-en in Mid- 

^ land dialects 

8. he binds 

1. we ) 

2. yon bind 

3. they 


1. icband 

2. ))ubnnd-e 
8. he band 

1. we [bundnn 

2. ge \ or 

3. hi (bnnd-on 

1. t 

2. I 

3. b 
1. ) 

and (bond) 
and (bond) 

bond-en, bond-e, bond, 

1. I bound 

2. thou bound'st 

3. he bound 

1. we ] 

2. you bound 

3. they 









8vng. bind bind i 
FVur. bind-a« bind-eth ; North, dial, bind-es | 






Verbal Noun. 

Gerund, (to) 

Imp. Fart. 

Perfect Fart. 




bind-en, bind-e 

(The form in anne was lost in 

the fourteenth century) 
bind-ende, bind-inde, bind-and, 

bond-en, bond-e, bond, bounden, 


(to) bind: 
(to) bind' 



The New Conjugation. E.I., E.II.— In First English the New Con^ 
jugation makes the Past by connecting the ending de with the stem of the- 
verb. The Perfect Participle ends in ed or d. 





hael-ed (heal.) 

In First English the Conjugation of weak verbs included two forms of 
connecting the suffix with the stem. In the first form the connective 
vowel was e (or i). The connective of the second form was 6. 




'.: I. ner-i-e 


ner-ed (save) 

II. luf-ig-e 


luf-6d {love) 

III. h»l-e 


hael-ed (heal) 

The third is an example of verbs in which the connective vowel e is 
mostly omitted when the vowel of the stem is long. In luf-ig-e the g 
(softened to a y sound) serves to keep distinct the two vowels i and e. 

In Modern English the connective vowel 6 is lost, e remains, but is 
mostly silent, save when it follows d or t. 

The connective o was mostly changed to e in the earlier time of E.II. 
The final e of the Past feU into disuse in the later development of Old 

The endings, est for the 2nd person Singular (Present) ; eth and S for 
the 3rd person Singular (Present) ; an for the Infinitive ; ende, etc., for the 
Present Participle ; and anne for the Gerund, are used in E.I., alike in the 
two conjugations New and Old. 

The ending edest, for the 2nd person Singular (Past), belonged 
originally to the New Conjugation ; but in E.II. the same ending was some- 
times aflfixed to verbs of the Old Conjugation. 

The appended table shows two forms of the New Conjugation in E.I» 
In both the Subjunctive Mood is omitted. [See § 23.] 

VERBS. — ^B.1., B.II. 


hsBlan = to heal. 

Indicative Mood. 

S. 1. ic hsBl-e 

2. )>u hsBl-est 

3. he Ii8el-et5 
P. 1. we 

2. fire Vhael-a-S 

we "] 
hi J 

lufian = to love. 
Indicative Mood. 

S. 1. 


P. 1. 




1. ic hael-de 

2. >u hsel-dest 

3. he hael-de 

1. we "1 

2. ge I 

3. hi J 










Imperative Mood. 

8. hael 
P. haBl-a« 

Imperative Mood. 

8. luf-a 
P. luf-i-a« 

iNFiNTnvE Mood. 

Fi?r6aZ Noun. 


Imp. Part. 



Infinitive Mood. 

Verbal Noun, luf-i-an 

Gerund, luf-i-enne 

Imp. Part, luf-ig-ende 

P.P. luf-od 

In E.I. and E.ll. several weak verbs, by syncopation of stems and 
suffixes, and by assimilation, were made more or less irregular in their con- 
jugation. These are here classified mostly with reference to their forms in 
Modern English. Some verbs, of which ' let ' is an example, have now only 
•one form for the Present, the Past, and the Perfect Participle. The 
original forms of the first six verbs following are not found in E.I., but are 
found in Old English. 


caste : kestide {etc.) 


casten : cast 



costed : coste 




kottede : cutte 




hirtide : hurte 






































seted : sett 



sprad . 





Several verbs — represented by ' meet ' — have now no change for P. and 
P.P. save a shortening of the vowel, which was long in E.I. 

P. P.P. M.E. 










































led : i-lad 













Some verbs — represented by ' keep,^ ^bend^ and ^ gird' — have mostly 
Perfect Participles ending in t. Among them several (of which '^/rcJ' is 
an example) retain also the regular P.P. 





hghte: lit 


bende "1 
bente f 








VERBS. — E.I., B.II. 





bildide : bilde 









delte / 


deled \ 
delt / 






( = rejoict 
(= dream 


felede : felte 














knelede \ 
knelte / 




levede \ 
lefte / 





lente / 














slep : slepte 













wep : wepte 





Two verbs — ' sell ' and ' tell ' — have long 6 instead of ea in the Past of 
E.I. The change vras made in E.II. 










tealde 1 
talde \ 
tolde J 









In ' clothe' (P. clad) contraction has taken place, and the sound of ^ 
has, by assimilation, been changed to that of d. In ' make' (P. 'made ') a 
guttural c with the connecting vowel 6 is lost. 

The E.II. contractions and other variations of 'habben' (P. 'hadde,' 
etc.) are numerous. 



habben | 
haven >{etc.) 
han J 





havede "^ 
hevede >{etc.) 
hadde J 






haved \ 
had / 







In the Past of ' shoe ' and 'flee syncopation takes place, with a vowel- 
change from long to short. 

The transition from ssegde to saede, for the Past of secgan (to say) is 
explained by a reference to the E.I. alphabet. Guttural g, in some posi- 
tions, had a softened sound like that of y. 




sayen ^(etc.) 
sayn J 





shoed : shode 

said "1 
seid J 



In several verbs the stem-vowel has been changed to ou (in ' teach ' to 
au) for P. and P.P. ' Work ' retains, in M.E., the regular form, besides 
the P. and P.P. * wrought' 

VERBS. — E.I., E.II. 


bringen 1 
brengen J 


biggen 1 
buyen J 


brofite 1 

brought 1 
broght / 



bouhte 1 
boghte / 

boht / 


s6hte \ 

soht 1 
sought J 



taught \ 
taht J 


)>ohte 1 


>oht / 





wrohte 1 

i-worht "1 
wroht > 
wrought J 







The appended table partly shows the process by which weak verbs have 
passed, through transitional forms, into the forms now accepted as belonging 
to Modem English. 






'8. 1. ic hsBl-e 

2. >u hael-est 

3. he h8Bl-e« 

P. 1. we -] 

2. ge Ihsel-aS 

3. hi J 

1. h 

2. h 

3. h 

3. < 


el-est(-es, -is, -ys) 

el-eth (-es, -is, -ys) 

hel-eth, hel-e ; in 
Midland dialects, 
hel-en ; in North- 
ern, hel-es (-is, 

L -ys) 

1. I heal 

2. thou heal-est 

3. he heals or heal- 


1. we ~j 

2. you yheal 

3. they J 

(8. 1. ic hflBl-de 
2. ^u hsel-dest 
•«J 3. he hsel-de 
4^ 1 P. 1. we 1 

1. hel-e-de, hel-e-d 

2. hel-e-dest 

3. hel-e-de, hel-e-d 

1. I heal-e-d 

2. thou heal-e-dst 

3. he heal-e-d 

\- Ihel-e-den, hel-e-de, 
I J hel-e-d 

1. we ^ 

2. you \-heal-e-d 

3. they J 




E.II. M.E. 

8. hsBl 1 
P. hsBl-a-S 1 



eth ; North, dial, hel- 

1 heal 
es 1 heal 







Ferbal Noun. 

Gerund, (to) 

Imp. Part. 

Perfect Part. 




hel-en, hel-e 

(The form in enne was lost in 

the fourteenth century) 
hel-ende, hel-inde, hel-and, 


(to) heal 
(to) heal 



The general result of decay in verbal inflexions is that in M.E. the 
Simple Conjugation is brief. On the other hand Compound Forms of Con- 
jugation hare hardly any bounds ; for besides the auxiliaries ' have, ' shall/ 
and ' will ' others may be used. Ex. : * do,' ' may,' ' can,' ' must,' and ' go.^ 
The poverty of our Simple Conjugation is shown in the appended tables. 

The Simple Conjugation of ' write ' (a strong verb having the greatest 
number of inflexions) includes only eight distinct forms, and of these three 
(here printed in Italic) are seldom used. In all the places left blank the 
form ' write ' is used. 



Sing. 1. I — I Plur. we — 

2. thou writest ye (you) — 

3. he writes (writeth) i they — 


1. I wrote we 

2. thou wrotest ye (you) 

3. he wrote they 





Verbal Noun, (to) write 
Imperfect Participle, writing 
Perfect Participle, written 

The Simple Conjugation of the weak verb ' call,^ having the ending ed 
for both the Past and the Past Participle, is briefly indicated in the following 
tabular form. One sign ( — ) indicates the form of the verb in the first 
person Singular of the Present, and another sign („.) indicates the form 
of the Past and the Perfect Participle. The pronouns, ' I,' ' thou,' * he ' 
(singular), and 'we,' 'you,' 'they' (plural), are indicated by the numbers 
1, 2, 3. 


Sing. 1. 

— est 
— s 

Plur. 1. 





Infinitivh Mood, (to) — ; Imperfect Participle, — ing. 
Perfect Participle, . . . 

For Compound Conjugation in E.I. the verbs bedn, weor'8an, and 
habban are used with Participles ; sculan, sometimes serving to indicate a 
future time, conveys also a notion of obligation. 

Bedn and weor'San {to become) are used with Participles in the Passive 

The Imperfect Participle is used with bedn, etc., to denote progressive 
action, as in ic eom spreceude ( = I am speaking). 

The Perfect Participle with habbe forms a Perfect, and with hafd& 
forms a Pluperfect Tense, but the simple Past is often used instead of the 

All these forms of Compound Conjugation were continued in E.IL, and 
the use of * schal ' ( = sceal in E.I.) for the Future was greatly extended. 
The auxiliary ' habben ' has, in Old English, many variations, of which 
only a few are given in the appended table. 

habban ( = have) 




. (8. 1. habbe 

habbe, hafe, have 


1 1 2. hafst 

habbest, hafest, havest, hast 


E 1 3. hafa-S 


has, hat 

•^ I P. habba-S 

habbeth, hafeth, haveth, hath 


iS. 1. hafde 

hafde, hadde, hefde {etc.) 


^- J 2. hafdest 
1 j 3. hafde 

haddest, hevedest {etc.) 


hevede {etc.) 


I P. hafdon 

heveden {etc.) 


Verbal Noun, habban 

habben, hafen, haven, ban 

to have 

Gerund, to habbenne 

to habben e 

to have 

Imp. P. habbende 

havande {etc.), hevinge 


P.P. hafed 

haved, had 


* Irregular Verbs.— E.I. , E.II. 

Verbs belonging neither to the Old Conjugation nor to the New are 
called Irregular (or Anomalous). Some have forms of the Past now used 
in the Present Tense, and are defective in the number of Tenses. The 
Irregular Verbs, of which some E.II. forms are given in the appended 
tables, have in E.II. many variations that are here omitted. Words 
remaining in M.E. are printed in Italic. E.II. forms are printed in Roman. 
The boldest type indicates the words belonging to E.I. 

The forms of bedn belong to three sterns, and may here be distributed 
in two tables. 

am ( = am) 

Pr. Past. 

8. 1. 






Inf. wegan 




Imp. P. wesende 




P.P. gewesen 



8. 1. 


beo : be 



beoth : smden 


s. 1. 








beon (= be) 


do {= do) 

ded : diden 

Inf. beon 
Imp. P, beende 
PJP. bin 





P. doinge 


S. 1. 



ga :go 


gas : goth 

gangan— go (=5ro) 


gang : gon 

eode : yede 
■ (3rd p.) 
eode : yude P.P. gon : ago 

With respect to ' a^o' and many other words, it should be noticed that, 
while the form is retained, the use of the word is changed. 

Imp. P. 

gan : gon 

8. 1. 





wendan (^z= to go) 







In E.II. the forms used to give the tenses of ' go ' belong to three 
stems. The form * wends ' still belongs to poetry. In Old English, as in 
Modern, wew^ serves as the Past of ^0. The forms 'go,' 'gon,' etc., come 
from the E.I. verb gangan. The forms 'yode,' etc., come from 'eode,' a 
weak verb, distinct from both gangan and wendan. 

can (= can) 

Con now = to study. The old meanings of the Infinitive were • to be 
€ible, ' ' to know.' In M.E. the Indicative forms assert power or ability. 

Pr. Past. 

8. 1. 




canst : ( 



Cunning ' had formerly the meaning of ' being able.' 

con (= study) 
P. cunning ( = sly) 

VERBS.— E.I., E.II. 


dar( = 

: dare = venture) 




darst : dare 
dar : dare 



daren {etc^ 
daurmg ( = hold) 

seal ( = owe) 




scalt : slial 








8, 1. 



This verb (sculan) aflTords a remarkable instance of slow decay, or dimi- 
nution, in the meaning of a word. Sceal is historically a past tense of 
skila, and in meaning = ' I have killed some man, and therefore must now 
pay the penalty.' The word still conveys a notion of obligation, especially 
when the modern past form, ' should,^ is used in the second person. 
Ex. : ' You should pay your debts.' 

mow ( = am able) 



8. 1. 




myght : maist 




wille (= w 

ill, the a 



8. 1. 




wilt : will 


Inf. mowe 
P.P. might 



The independent verb • to will ' ( = to the phrase * to have a will,' or = 
to * bequeath by will ') is a weak verb, and is regular in its conjugation. It 
is seldom used. [8e€. New Test., John xvii. 24.] 

owe ( = ought) 

8. 1. 



ah : ought 


ahte {etc.) 

Inf. owen 
Imp. P. owinge 
P.P. ought 



must ( = must) 

Pr. Past. 

S, 1. 




most : mote 





Of this verb M.E. retains only one form 
the Present Tense. 


' must,' now used mostly in 

weor'San ( = become) 

P. 1. 



wyr'S, worth 

wear's, wserd 



This verb was used with participles in the Passive Voice of verbs 
in E.I. 

* Worth ' is used with the meaning of ' be to' in ' woe worth the day ! ' 


Of Variations in Old English Verbal Forms a very large majority are 
nothing more than so many modes of spelling. Other variations — more 
important — represent three dialects. Of these the Sonthern was spoken 
in divisions of England lying south of the Thames, The Midland was 
spoken in Norfolk, Suffolk, Lincolnshire, and the Midland shires, and — 
farther north — was partly altered by contact with other modes of speech. 
Thus and — a participle ending of the Northern Dialect — is found here and 
there in the Midland. Some divisions may be made in the Midland Dia- 
lect, but of variations the East Midland is so far the most important that 
it may be called 'the Midland.' The Northern Dialect was spoken in 
Middle and Eastern districts lying north of the Humber, and in the Low- 
lands of Scotland. Characteristic Verbal Endings are given in the tables 
appended, which are not intended to show variations, such as are found in 
each of the three dialects. 











Imperative Mood. 
Sing, e | PI. eth (e) 


inde, ing | 


2. Uen(de,d) 

Perf ed 

The prefix i (or y) often serves to make the Perfect Participle distinct 
irom the Past Tense, 



^ing. 1. 





Fl 1. 



vn^. 1. 


Imperative Mood. 
Sing, e | PI. eth (e) 






den (de, d) 

Imp. ende, and, ing Per/, ed 

In the Midland, as in the Southern Dialect, the prefix i (or y) often 
serves to make the Perfect Participle distinct from the Past Tense. 

■Sitig. 2 


18 (es) 


Present. (Indicative.) 

PI. 2.-1 



is (es) 

Imperative Mood. 
— 1 PL es 

Sing. 1.) PI. l.^ 

2. Ut (ed) 2. Ut (ed) 
3.J 3.J 

Imp. and, ing | Per/, it (ed) 


The ending ing served as a substitute for inde in the Southern Dialect, 
ende in the Midland, and ande (or and) in the Northern. 

FmsT English had two uses for the concrete suffix ing, which served to 
form words mostly used as concrete nouns, and others used here and there 
as adjectives. "With this suffix used in forming concrete nouns — such as 
cyn-ing (king) — 1 was sometimes connected, as in h^re-1-ing (hireling). 
A distinct and abstract suffix, ung (or ing), served with verbal stems to 
form abstract nouns, such as endung. In the Class of concrete nouns in 
ing, the connexion of 1 with ing had not always a diminutive meaning. 
In some examples the suffix ing seems to make no difference in the mean- 
ing of the stem. Thus, ' lording ' in some places = ' lord.' 

In Old English the uses of words having the suffix ing were extended. 
They served, as participles, connected with verbs, and denoting such con- 
tinuous acts as were expressed by older participle forms ending in inde, 
ende, and and. And as words ending in inde, etc., might be used either as 
participles or as adjectives, so later forms of participles (ending in ing) 
were also employed as adjectives. Meanwhile ing served also as an end- 
ing of abstract and of concrete nouns. 

The following are examples of the two uses to which participle forms 
having the endings inde, ende, and and were applied in E.II. 

Participles. — 'The thief is comynde.' 'He was gangende.' 'We er 
here lyffand ' (living). Adjectives. — ' Biscopes singende.' ' Folc (here) 
woniende ' (people dwelling here). ' Damysels wanderand by spring 
wells.' ' A ganand (suitable) servant.' 

Old English words in ing have therefore versatile uses. They may — 
but not without respect to their meanings — represent First English concrete 
-and abstract nouns ending in ing and ung, or may serve as participles 
•and adjectives. All these four uses belong to our modern forms in ing. 


The following are Old English examples of words in ing serving as 
participles : — 

' A pore wydow . . . was duellyug in a pore cotage.' * We were entry- 
ing at a townes ende.' * Syngynge he was or flowtynge all the day.' ' Con- 
science was coming.' * Conscience was chiding.' 

The following are examples of words ending in ing, and serving as 
nouns : — ' Our birthe here es begynnyng of the dede that es our endyng.' 
' Styntyd is the mornyng ' (The mourning is ended). ' At the last a 
changing befell.' 

The following are examples of Old English words ending in ing and 
serving as adjectives : — ' Mid (with) barninge golde.' ' A worthy weed, well 
closing ' ( = A good coat, well fitting), ' Business, that cunning creature, 
can soon bring him there.' ' The balmie dew, through birning drouth, he 

In the Northern Dialect the verbal form ending in ing was, in nu- 
merous examples, treated as a noun, and words ending in and served mostly 
as participles and adjectives. But to the same dialect belong three of the 
examples here given of adjectives included among forms ending in ing. 
These forms were not always employed as nouns in the Northern Dialect. 

In the appended excerpts from writings in the three dialects of E.II. 
forms that are found following verbs, and serving to make complete asser- 
tions, are called 'Participles.' In Syntax these forms are classified with 
others called ' Complements of the Predicate.' [See § 46.] 


Present and Past {Indicative) Sinp., 2nd Person. 

Present. Past. 

Southern Dialect. Jju ha vest. Jju haddest. 

Midland „ }>u seyest. >u lovedest. 

Northern „ >ou spendis. >ou crowned. |>ou had. 

Present and Past PI. (1st and 3rd Persons.) 

Present. Past. 

Southern Dialect. We habbeth. We hadden. 

„ „ Men knoweth it. Men liveden. 

Midland „ We loven. We walked in the feldes. 

„ „ Some sayen. Thay preyeden ( = prayed). 

Northern „ Now we win. We keepit him. 

„ „ Men sayis. They keepit him. 

Imperative (Plural). 

Southern. Walketh (ye) !— Stondeth ! ( = Stand !) 
Midland. Walketh !— Stondeth ! 

Northern. Erely gyf yhe ! — Wepes namore ! — Gives timpan ! (Bring a 
timbrel !) Blawes (in) heme ! (Blow the trumpet !) 

Imperfect Participles. 

Southern. Weepynd — berninde ( = burning) — barninge ( = burning). 
Midland. Walkende — lepand ( = leaping) — singinge. 
Northern. Burnand ( = burning) — coming — following. 



Perfect Participles. 

Sovihem. Heled — loved — arayed — i-cristned — y-blissed. 

Midland. Wounded — oflFendid — y-buried — bl essy d — blessed. 

Northern. Displeasit ( = displeased) — delayit ( = delayed). 

As modern forms in ing may serve (a) as nouns, {b) as participles, and 
(c) as adjectives preceding nouns, so some (a) may be defined by adjectives, 
some (6) may be followed by nouns serving as objects, and some (c) may — 
like adjectives — be defined more closely by connexion with adverbs. 

The general tendency of the language in the time when Old English 
was written was to increase greatly the number of verbs belonging to the 
New Conjugation, to which nearly all the verbs borrowed from Old French 
were transferred. The verb ' strive ' (of which the stem is Teutonic} 
represents the Old French verb estriver, but is conjugated as a verb 
belonging to the fifth class of the Old Conjugation. Some verbs were 
gradually and permanently transferred from the Old Conjugation to the 
New ; but there remained such old forms of verbs as are given in the list 

Old Forms of Verbs that have been mostly transferred to the 
New Conjugation. 

Old Forms of P. and P.P. are given, with numbers denoting classes of 
the Old Conjugation to which the old forms belong. The form given for 
the Present belongs to Modern English. 























let {permit) 

















(etc.) 1 




































































lie (speak) 





















































An attempted transfer of verbs from the Old Conjugation to the New 
failed in some instances, and occasionally new or weak inflexions were 
given to verbs that still retained their strong inflexions. 

New Forms of Verbs still wholly or partly belonging to the 
Old Conjugation. 

In the list appended, new forms of P. and P.P. found in Old English are 
given, with numbers denoting classes of the Old Conjugation to which the 
verbs belong. The form given for the Present belongs to Modern Engish. 

















7 : 






strew "1 
strow J 







1 i 








5 1 





Obsolete Verbs. 

Of Old English verbs called obsolete a considerable number may still 
be found in dialects of the North of England and in the Lowlands dialect 
of Scotland, which is erroneously treated as a 'language' distinct from 
English. These verbs, and others now forgotten, mostly denote physical 
actions and transitions in nature, or serve to express the common passions 
of men. The following are a few examples of obsolete verbs : — ' agrise ' 
(dread), ' belimpe ' (happen), 'beorge ' (protect), ' chine' (split), 'dreoge' 
(mourn), * fremme ' (act well), ' for-slouthe,' or, in its later form, 'foreslow' 
(lose by sloth), ' grete ' (mourn), ' greythe ' (make ready), ' hele ' (conceal), 

* lake ' (leap ; or play), ' loute ' (stoop), ' fese,' or ' pheese ' (scare ; drive 
away), ' rowte ' (snore), ' snithe ' (cut), ' stise ' (ascend), ' swice' (deceive), 
'the' (thrive), 'thole' fsuffer), 'threpe' (call; or scold), 'thwinge' 
(constrain), ' twinne ' (separate), ' weorthe ' (become). For some meanings 
the old vocabulary had words almost synonymous. The general meaning 
of the verbs ' to fail ' and ' to decay ' belongs to the old words ' blinne,' 
or ' linne ' (cease), ' clinge ' (wither), ' swele ' (waste away), ' swelte ' 
(faint; die), and 'sweorce' (grow faint). The general meaning of the 
verbs ' to seize ' and ' to take ' belongs to the old words ' fo ' (or ' fonge '), 
' gripe,' ' hente,' ' lacche,' and ' nime.' It may be noticed here that 
smooth, modern versions of some old writings convey false impressions of 
life in the Middle Ages. Our study of English words may serve to correct 
some historical errors. Of harsh manners in olden times our language 
bears witness. In words of strife and warfare the old vocabulary was 
wealthy, and contained, besides some verbs not obsolete, the following : — 
"flite' (strive), ' grimme' (rage), 'hnate' (knock), ' reave' and ' strude' 
frob), 'schende' (ruin), and ' wrece' (wreak ; avenge). The verbs 'sace,' 

* ■wige,' and * winne ' all mean ' to fight,' and the meaning of * to destroy * 
IB expressed by ' cwele ' (whence ' quell'), ' drepe,' and • spille.' 


Gradual Prevalence of the Midland Dialect. 

In Scotland, during the time 1350-1650, transitions in language were 
made more slowly than in the Midland districts of England, and words 
borrowed from the Old Northern (or Icelandic) tongue were long re- 
tained in the Old English dialect spoken in the Lowlands of Scotland. In 
some forms of declension and conjugation, and in a considerable part of its 
vocabulary, that dialect has individuality. But many words not found in 
writers of Southern First English might exist in the popular English tongue 
of the oldest time, for Old Northern was cognate with First English. The 
so-called Old Scottish ' Language ' is merely one of the three dialects of 
English. In the fourteenth century the difference made between the 
Northern and the Southern Dialects was already so great that men who spoke 
the latter could hardly understand well the former. In the later part of 
the fifteenth century, and in the earlier part of the sixteenth, transition in 
the speech of the more central parts of England was accelerated by the 
introduction of printing, and at the close of the sixteenth century special 
glossaries were required by readers of books written in Langland's time. 
In the hundred years that passed away between that period and Spenser's 
time, the relations of the three dialects were changed. The Northern was 
left least altered. In Scotland educated men, who could write Latin, spoke 
Old English, such as seemed uncouth and ' out of use ' to men living within 
sixty miles of London, or in the South and West of England, The Southern 
Dialect retreated and belonged mostly to the West. Meanwhile the Mid- 
land — greatly altered in the course of the hundred years — assumed the 
character and the position of Standard English, and was spoken in London 
and its surrounding districts. 

Variations in Old English — such as have been noticed — are indeed 
manifold; but they do not make our language, as written in the later 
mediaeval period, a tongue separate, on one side, from First English, and, 
on the other, from Modern English. * In England, from the time of JElfric 
to the present, one tongue has been always spoken by the people.' To 
support this assertion the following facts may be noticed. 

tElpric, a bishop who lived in the tenth century, wrote (as he tells us) a 
a book ' on engliscre spreece' — i.e. in the English speech. In the next hun- 
dred years Canute's secular laws were written, and were proclaimed * on 
englisc,' in order that they might be understood and held valid ' ofer eall 
Engla-land ' — that is to say, throughout all England. It is clear, then, that 
* the Danes ' had not suppressed the language of the people, and if rude 
and cruel invaders could not do that, it was not likely it would be done by 
the Normans, who were (comparatively speaking) civilized and educated 

After the Conquest — as before— when Latin words and phrases were 
used, in sermons addressed to the people, translations were introduced by 
phrases such as are seen in the following examples : — ' Bimitte nobis dehita 
nostra — haet is, on englisc, Forgif iis ure gyltas ;' ' Observa diem sabbatl — 
J>et is, on englis,' etc. It seems clear that after the Conquest men called . 
the speech of JElfric and bijS' predecessors English; for Latamon, who 
lived in the twelfth century, speaks of ' >a Englisca hoc' that was written by 
the venerable Beda, who lived in the eighth century. Orm, who wrote in 
the thirteenth century a harmony of the Gospels, described his own work as 
turning 'intill Ennglissli ' the holy doctrine of God's word. This writer 
had his own rule for spelling; he always doubled the consonant following a 
short VQwel. In the fourteenth century Chatjcer, though he employed 



many French -words, wrote (as Spenser tells us) good English, and in the 
fifteenth century several -writers of English verse lived in Scotland, as ■we' 
are told by Dunbab, their follower, -who, in the early part of the sixteenth 
century, -wrote good English poetry. Chaucer, -when he speaks of diver- 
sity in modes of -writing, still calls the language spoken throughout 
England ' our tongue.' Trevisa, who -wrote English in 1387, complained 
that pronounciation was so far discordant in various districts that Southern 
men could not understand the speech of Northern men. Still the three 
' languages ' of which he writes were but three dialects of English. Put- 
TBNHAM (in his 'Art of English Poetry,' 1589) tells the poets (or 'makers ') 
who were his cotemporaries that in their choice of diction they must, 
neither follow such old authors as Langland and Chaucer, nor imitate 
Northern modes of speech ; but at the same time he confesses that Northern 
men spoke purer English than was spoken in and near London. A Scottish 
writer of the sixteenth century tells us that ' Inglis men and Scottis men ' 
can never agree, though ' thai be nychtbours ' (neighbours) ' and of ane 

Of some -writers who lived in the seventeenth century it might be said, 
they strove to bury their o-wn speech under an accumulation of Latin com- 
pounds ; but English was still the language of the people, and its strength 
was shown in the authorized version of the Bible. To display the wealth 
of his native tongue, a writer named Fairfax published, in 1674, a book 
of which the aim was to exclude nearly all words borrowed from Latin. 
In later times good authors have written so as to unite the two elements 
of our composite language. At the present time, the notion of treating 
modern forms -without reference to old forms may be called obsolete. Our 
' household words ' and our construction of sentences are closely connected 
with Old English. 

Such variations as belong to one language are, in appended examples, 
placed in contrast with differences that separate one language from another. 
It is obvious that, in the excerpts following the number 3, there are no 
differences such as are seen when those examples are compared -with Latin, 
Italian, and Cymraeg excerpts foUo-wing the numbers 4, 5, and 6. It is 
also ob-vious that Gothic, Old High Oerman, and First English are closely 
related Teutonic languages, and do not differ from one another as they 
differ from Eoman and from Keltic languages. 

1. Gothic. 4th century. Vairthai vilja theins, sv6 in himina, jah 

M.E. Words. Become will thine, as in heaven, also 
ana airthai. Lausei una af thamma ubilin. Oif uns himma daga, etc. 
on earth. Ee-lease us from that e-vil. Give us this day, etc. 

2. Old High Qerman. 8th century. Uuerdhe uuilleo thin sama so 

M.E. Words. Become will thine same as 
in himile endi in erthu. Arlosi unsih fona ubile. Gib uns hiutu, etc. 
in heaven also in earth. Ee-lease us from evil. Give us to-day, etc. 

3. English. 9th century. 

„ 14th century. 

,, 19th century. 
SW& (so) swa (as) on heofenum 

as in hevene. 

aa in heaven. 

Geweor^e J)in willa on 


Be thi wille don in 


Be thy will done in 


1. Alys us of yfele. 

De-lyver us from yvel. 

Ee-lease us from evil. 


4. Latin. Fiat voluntas tua sicut in ccelo et in terra. 
M.E. Words. Be done will thy as in heaven also in earth. 

5. Italian. La tua volunta sia fatta in terra come in cielo. 
M.E. Words. — thy will be done in earth as in heaven. 

6. Cymraeg. Bydded dy ewyllys ar y ddaear megis y mae 
M.E. Words. (Let) be thy will on the earth as (it) is 

yn y nefoedd. G wared ni rhag drwg. Dyro i ni heddyw, etc. 
in the heaven. Re-lease us from evil. Give to us to-day, etc. 

Of the stems seen in the excerpts from First English only one (wear's) 
is obsolete in our English of the present time, and that stem may be found 
here and there in Modern English literature. 


[For the use of learners who do not study Old English, some definitions 
^already given in *20 are rej^eated in § 21.] 

Verbs, when called Intransitive and Transitive, are 
•classified with respect to meaning. Verbs, when classi- 
fied with reference to forms, are called Old and New, or 
Irregular and Defective. Inflexions of Verbs are changes 
of form serving to denote changes in Mood, Tense, 
Number, and Person. That part of a Verb that remains 
Tvhen inflexions are taken away is called the Stem. 

Mood means manner or mode. 

When a Verb is named without any assertion, or any 
•expression of a wish or a supposition, the Verb is used 
in the Infinitive Mood. 

Ex, : ' (to) write.' The particle ' to ' is here called 
** the sign of the Infinitive Mood,' and does not retain the 
force of the preposition ' to,'' 

For the purposes of making assertions, expressing 
negation and asking questions the Indicative Mood is 
employed. Ex, : * He writes.' ' He fears no foe.' « Do 
you say that ? ' 

The Imperative Mood expresses a command or a 
jequest. Ex. : ' Come ! ' 

The Subjunctive Mood serves generally to express 
notions that imply contingency or possibility. When 
both doubt and futurity are implied, the Subjunctive 
Mood, or manner of speaking, may be used. 


Ex, : ' If he come to-morrow, I shall see him.' 

But many writers and speakers -would say ' if he comes.'' [See § 68.] 
The Subjunctive Mood has no peculiar inflexion. When we write (in 
the Subjunctive Mood) such a sentence as ' if he were here,' we do not use 
a peculiar form for the Subjunctive. One of the forms of the Indicative 
Plural is here used in the Singular, in order to denote the difference be- 
tween a supposition and an assertion. 

The Verbs ' have,' ' shall,' ' will,' and ' be ' are called 
Auxiliary Verbs, because they give aid in the Conjugation 
of other Verbs. 

Tense means time. The Present, the Past, and the 
Future are the three chief divisions of time. 

The Verb has inflexions to make the Past distinct 
from the Present. Ex, : Pr. ' he writes ;' Past, ' he wrote.' 
Pr. ' he commands ; ' Past, ' he commanded.' 

By the aid of Auxiliary (or Helping) Verbs ('shall,^ 
' will,' and ' have ') other distinctions are made, so that at 
least six Tenses may be enumerated : — • 

Present, he writes. | Perfect, he has written. 

Past, he wrote. 
Future (Imp.) he will write. 

Pluperfect, he had written » 
Future {Per.) he will have 

The Perfect speaks of the Past -vvith a reference to the Present. ' I 
wrote the letter ' (Past), ' and now I have written it ' (Perfect.) The Plu- 
perfect refers to a point of time as antecedent to another in the Past. 
Ex. : ' I had written my note before the arrival of the mail.' The Future 
Perfect refers to a point of time as antecedent to another in the Future. 
Ex. : ' I shall have ended my work before they come to-morrow.' 

Three Tenses — the Present, the Past, and the Future Imperfect — have 
reference to an unfinished action. Three — the Perfect, the Pluperfect, and 
the Future Perfect — have reference to a finished action. The two Tenses 
having reference to future time are sometimes named respectively the First 
Future and the Second. 

The Verb is in the Singular when one person or thing 
is the subject of which we speak, but in the Plural when 
we speak of more than one. In each Number there are 
three Persons. 

Fie.: 1st. 'I speak;' 2nd. 'thou speakest ; ' Srd. 'he 

The Plural has no inflexions of Person. 
Ex. : ' we write ; ' ' yon write ; ' ' they write.' 


The Conjugation of a Verb is a plan showing several 
forms serving to denote variations of Mood, Tense, Number, 
and Person. 

When no Auxiliary (or Helping) Verbs are used, the 
Conjugation is Simple. 

Ex. : ' wrote ' is a part of the Simple Conjugation. 

When Auxiliary Verbs are used, the Conjugation is 

Ex.: ^has written' is a part of the Compound Conjuga- 

' Writing ' and ' written ' are called Participles. While 
{like Verbs) they denote action, they may be used as 

' Writing ' may serve here as an example of Participles 
called ' Imperfect.' ' Writing ' is used, with Helping 
Verbs, to express continuous action — Present, Past, or 

Present. I am writing. 
Fast. I was writing. 
1st Future. I shall be writing. 

' Written ' (a Perfect Participle) is used to form, with 
Helping Verbs, the three following Compound Tenses : — 


Singular. Plural. 

1. I have n we "] 

3. he has J 


you V have written 

they J 


1. I had 1 I we 1 

2. thou hadst > written you >had written 

3. he had J they J 


ill -] 
wilt V 
iU J 

1. I shall 

2. thou wilt ^have written 
8. he wiU 

we shall "^ 

you will >have written 

they will J 


In Modern English — as in First English and in Old 
English — Verbs have two Conjugations — the Old and the 

In some Grammars the two forms of Conjugation are respectively called 
' Strong ' ( = Old) and * Weak ' ( = New). In other Grammars the New 
Conjugation is called ' Eegular,' and the Old is called ' Irregular.' 

In the Old Conjugation the Past Tense is expressed by 
the change of a vowel. 

In the New Conjugation the Past Tense has the suffix 
^ d,' representing de in First English. 

Old. New. 

Present. I write. I love. 

Fast. I wrote. I loved. 

The Perfect Participle is the form used with ' have ' 
in the Tense called ' the Perfect.' 

I have written Old. 

I have loved New. 

The Perfect Participle of the Old Conjugation does 
not end in d. 

The old suffix en, for the Perfect Participle of the Old Conjugation, has 
been dropped in many instances ; but remains in the Participle ' written.' 
Here, however, the modern tendency to drop the suffix en is indicated. 
We read, in the English Bible (of the seventeenth century), ' What I have 
written I have written,' but a modern author says, in verse, ' What is writ 
is writ' 

The Perfect Participle of the New Conjugation ends 
in d. 

In pronunciation, and in one mode of spelling, this d is in some verbs 
changed to t. [See *2.] 

A few Verbs belonging neither to the Old nor to the 
New Conjugation are called Irregular. 

The three forms of a Verb chosen to indicate its Con- 
jugation are those found in the 1st Person Singular of the 
Present Tense, the Past, and the Perfect. 

Present. Past. Perfect. 

Old. I write I I wrote I I have written. 

New. I love i I loved I have loved. 



The second form is that which may be used with the adverb • yester- 
<iay.' The third form is that which follows ' have' 

Ex. : ' I wrote yesterday.' — ' I have written.' 

Forms respectively appropriate to the three persons are, in the Singular, 
partly made distinct by these personal endings: — est (or, in verse, 'st) for 
the second person, and es or s (with eth or th) for the third person of the 
Present. In the Past the first and the third person are in form alike ; but 
est or 'st, added to the tense-ending ed, makes for the second person of 
verbs in the New Conjugation the ending ed'st. The person-endings est, 
s, and eth are used alike in the two conjugations ; but eth is archaic or 
poetical in literature, and is obsolete in conversation. The Plural has no 
endings showing distinctions of person. 

In the following table the Simple forms of Conjugation — i.e. the changes 
Tnade without the aid of Helping Verbs — are given in the two Conjugations, 
Old and New. 


Old Conjugation. 
Fresent S. I know 




thou know-est 
lie know-s 
we "I 

you > know 
they J 

I knew 

thou knew-est 

he knew 

we 1 

you >knew 

they J 

New Conjugation. 
I call 

thou call-est 
he call-s 
we "1 
you > call 
they J 

I call-ed 
thou call-edst 
he call-ed 
we 1 

you > call-ed 
they J 


8. and PI. know j call 


Verbal Noun. 
Invp. Part. 
Per. Pa/rt. 

(to) know 

(to) call 


Old Verbs arranged in Seven Classes. 

Old or Strong Verbs in First English are, with respect to vowel- 
changes in P. and P.P. forms, arranged in Eight Classes. In Modern 
English remains of vowel-changes are found, more or less, in Seven Classes 
of Old Verbs, but the Eighth Class does not exist. \_Sce *20.] When com- 



pared with their original forms, modern strong verbs — such as 'bind/ 
' bear,' ' bid,' ' take,' ' drive,' ' freeze,' and ' blow ' — may at once be called 
like and unlike. To tell the whole story of transitional forms belonging to 
the time when Old English was written, many pages would be required. 
For example, more than thirty words would be wanted to show all the 
forms used respectively for the P. and the P.P. of ' burst ' before the time 
when this verb lost its vowel-changes and its participle ending en. In 
other instances, old forms have in the course of ages been so much altered, 
that some writers on G-rammar now divide all English verbs into two 
classes, called * Eegular ' and ' Irregular,' and, including in the latter class 
all old verbs, treat of them without any reference to their historical con- 
nexion. This simple method of treatment has in its favour one practical 
consideration. For learning by rote a list of Old Verbs, the variety of 
vowel-changes in their modern forms makes impossible such classification 
as might afford aid to memory. This fact is made evident in the appended 
table, which may be compared with the table of vowel-changes for Old 
Verbs in E.I. [See ^20.] 

Vowels in Modern Forms of Old Verbs. 




Perfect Participle. 


i, e, a, u 

u, a, ou, 

U, OU, 



0, a 


i, e, ea, ee 


i, 0, ea, ai, ee 



00, 0, a 

a, 00, 



0, i, a, u 

i, 0, u 


ee, ea, oo 


ew, ow, a, 0, y,1 
aw, ay, ea / 

ew, ow, e, ea 

few, ow, e, a, 
\ aw, ea, ai 

It is therefore granted that, in the slight task of committing to memory 
P. and P.P. forms of ninety-six strong verbs more or less current in 
Modern English, we find no help in their historical classification. But it 
may nevertheless afford means of ready reference to their Oldest English 
forms, and may thus serve to make clear the sources of unusual forms and 
of some archaic words here and there occurring, not only in old writings 
and in spoken dialects, but also in works belonging to standard modern 
literature. In the First Class, for example, the old Past forms ' shrank,' 
' span,' ' sprang,' ' stang' and ' swang ' are made clear by reference to verbs 
belonging to the First Class in First English. And it will be as readily 
seen that the forms 'hare' 'brake,' ' sware,' and 'tare' represent Past 
forms (Singular) in verbs of the Second Class ; that ' spake ' is an old Past 
form of the Third Class ; that the perfect participles ' graven,' ' skapen,' 
and ' shaven ' belong to the Fourth ; that the Past forms ' drave ' and 
' strave' like the P.P. form ' stricken' agree with old and regular forms of 
the Fifth Class ; that the words 'cloven,' 'forlorn,' 'frore,' and ' shotten' — 
all found in modern literature — belong to old verbs of the Sixth Class, and 
that the perfect participles ' holden' ' up-holden' and ' with-holden,' belong 
to the Seventh. It is true, however, that the student will here and 
there find modern forms of old verbs that cannot be readily defined and 
associated. For in living tongues, as in nature, there occur such transi- 
tions and unions as render exact classification impossible. Some forms of 
the verb ' bid,' for example, have arisen from confusion of two verbs — 
biddan (' to require ') and beddan (' to command '). Other examples of 


difl&culty are seen in the verbs * break,' * come,' and * beat.' The following 
verbs— treated as old with respect to some P.P. forms— have also weak 
forms of perfect participles, and therefore belong to the Old Conjugation 
and to the New. 

engrave (and grave) I mow I shave [ sow 

hew I shape | shear I wake (awake) 

Of these, as of some other verbs, weak forms, ending in ed, become, as 
years roll on, more and more prevalent, while older forms, ending in en, 
fade away, so gradually that the time when they become obsolete cannot 
be defined. The facts already noticed make it evident that no plan of 
classification can serve always to place together corresponding forms and, 
at the same time, to connect together verbs that historically belong to one 
class. In the First Class modern forms for the P. and the P.P. of * begin,' 
' ring,' * sing,' and ' sink ' correspond well with original forms of the Past 
(Plural) and the P.P. ; but in the Past Singular the true forms — ' began,' 
' rang, ' sang,' and ' sank ' — are often neglected, and en has been dropped 
in the Perfect Participle. G-reater alterations are seen in the Third Class. 
In the Pourth o, the original vowel of the Past, remains in one form 
(' woke '), and its modern substitute oo is seen in ' forsook,' ' shook,' ' stood,' 
and ' took.' But the verbs ' engrave,' ' grave,' ' shape,' and * shave ' have 
weak forms in the Past, as in the P.P. Their older forms — 'grove,' 
' shope ' (or ' shoop '), * graven,' and ' shaven ' — belong to the Fourth Class of 
Old Verbs. In the Fifth Class a, the original vowel of the Past (Singular), 
is here and there seen in such words as ' drave,' * smate,' and * strave' but 
and i, in this class, mostly serve as substitutes for a. Of the Sixth 
Class hardly more than two verbs can be called modern. In the Seventli 
Class ' mow ' and ' sow ' retain their places only with respect to their P.P. 
forms ' mown ' and ' sown.' These observations may serve to indicate, at 
once, both the uses and the natural defects of historical classification. 

The abbreviation Pr. is used for the Present, 1st person Singular ; P. 
for the Past, and P.P. for the Perfect Participle. Such variations as are 
still current are set within curves ; but obsolete forms and some having onli/ 
special uses are set in Italic and within brackets. 

The First Class of Old Verbs includes those which in 
E.I. had, in the Past, S. a, PL n, and had u in the Perfect 
Participle. Of these changes vestiges remain in M.E. 
forms. The vowel in the Present, 1 (e), is changed to u 
(a, ou, o) in the Past, and to u (ou, o) in the Perfect Par- 

In the First Class the less altered forms have a in P. andu in P.P. 
Of the forms more altered five have ou in P. and PP., and one verb ('win') 
has 0. The verbs ' melt * and ' swell ' are now mostly treated as weak 
verbs, and for ' hang ' both strong and weak forms are used — sometimes 
with and often without respect to the two meanings of the verb. Its 
original forms are these : — Pr. hange, P. heng, P.P. hangen. The vowels 
— Pr. a, P. e, and P.P. a — are characteristics that in E.I. belonged to the 
Eighth Class of Strong Verbs, which is not represented in Modern English. 
[See *20.] 




began (begun) 


bound [lounden] 

The old verb gin, used by Shakespeaee and Milton, is not a contracted 
form of ' begin,' but is the stem to which the compound ' be-gin ' belongs. 
In this instance the prefix be makes no difference of meaning. Layamon, 
a writer who lived in the twelfth century, thus employs the stem-verb as 
in meaning equivalent to the compound: — 'Summe heo gunnen urnen; 
summe heo gunnen lepen ; summe heo gunnen sceoten ' (' Some they began 
to run ; some they began to leap ; some they began to shoot '). 

The old P.P. ' hounden ' is now an adjective, and in meaning = bound 
by duty or in law. In the words, * That ship is bound for Plymouth,' 
the meaning of the P.P. 'bound' (= made ready) reminds us of 'boun,' 
which, in the Scottish Dialect = ready. In Icelandic the verb bua^make 




dug (digged) 

drank (drunk) 


dug (digged) 
drunk [drunken'] 

The P.P. ' drunken ' is used as an adjective. In M.E. literature we 
find ' d^ank' here and there treated as a P.P. This is historically incorrect. 

Pr. P. P.P. 

fight fought fought 

find found found 

fling flung flung 

griud ground ground 

hang hung (hanged) hung (hanged) 

The verb ' hang ' ( = strangle) has ' hanged ' for P. and P.P., but distinct 
uses of the verb are not always marked by distinct forms. 

Pr. P. P.P. 

melt I melted | melted [moltenl 

The P.P. 'Tnolten ' is used as an adjective. * They . . . worshipped the 
molten image ' (Ps. cvi. 19, C.P. version). The verb ' smelt' (= melt ore) 
belongs to the New Conjugation. 

Pr. P. 




rang (rung) 


shrunk [shranh'] 

shrunk \_s7irunhen'] 

The verb ' shrive ' (to hear a confession and to absolve) has the forms : 
P. ' shrove,' ' shrived : ' P.P. ' shriven.' This verb is almost obsolete. 


sang (sung) 
sank (sunk) 



sunk (sunken) 

The P. I*. ' sunken ' is used as an adjective preceding nouns. 




The P.P. 



slunk l^slamk'] 


spun [^span] 
sprung \_sprang'] 




stung \_stang'] 
stunk [s^aw^] 

strung [strmged'] 

stringed ' is used as a-n adjective in Ps. cl. 4. 

P. P.P. 

I swelled [swaV] \ swelled (swollen) 

The P.P. • swollen ' is used as an adjective preceding nouns. 

Pr. P. P.P, 



swam (swum) 
swung [^swang'] 


The forms ' sprang,^ ' swang,' and others like them, are historically- 
correct, in the Past (Singular), and are found in good writers of M.E. 

wind (up) 



The verbs ' to wind ' (a horn) and ' to wind* (as a stream) are both used 
as wfw, but not without exceptional cases. In Scott's * Lady of the Lake ' 
we read, ' his horn he wound.' (First Canto, xvii.) 



wrung (wringed) 


The Second Class includes a few verbs which — except- 
ing ' come ' — have ea in the Present, o (a) in the Past, and 
in the Perfect Participle. 

In the Second Class the less altered forms have a in P. and o in P.P. 
Present forms in this class end in liquid sounds — excepting ' break,' which 
originally belonged to the Third Class. The verb • shear ' has both weak 
and strong forms. In ' come ' the vowel of the Present must be treated as 
an exception. 



I bore [hare] 

I bom (borne) 

' A child is born.' • The weight is borne.' The distinction here indi- 
cated is modern. For the compounds 'forbear' and 'overbear' the P.P. 
forms are ' forborne ' and ' overborne.' 


broke \hrake] 

broken (broke) 






I come 

The compounds ' become ' and ' overcome ' are like * come ' in their P. 
and P.P. forms. 

Pr. P. P.P. 

shear sheared [shore] I shorn (sheared) 

steal stole [stale] , stolen 

swear swore [sware] \ sworn . 

The old P. form ' sware' is found in Ps. xcv. 11. 

Pr. P. P.P. 

tear I tore [^are] | torn 

wear | wore | worn 

The Third Class includes verbs that have been greatly- 
altered with respect to the vowels of their P. and P.P. 

The less altered verbs have i (e, ea) in Pr., a (o) in P., and i (ea, o) in 
P.P. To other verbs belong respectively the vowels ea in P. and a (ai, ee) 
in P.P. 



bad-e (bid) 

bidden (bid) 

The verb ' bid ' (to offer a price) has no change for P. or P.P. 
compound '.forbid' is like the stem-verb in P. and P.P. forms. 




got [gat] 


got [gotten] 

The compounds 'beget' and 'forget'' are like the stem-verb in their P. 
and P.P. forms. The P.P. * forgotten ' is not obsolete. 



give I gave I given 

The compound * forgive ' is like the stem-verb in P. and P.P. forms. 


I lay 


I lain 

This intransitive verb should be distinguished irom the transitive and 
weak verb ' lay,' which has ' laid ' for both P. and P.P. 






sat (sate) 
spoke [spa^e] 



sat (sate) 
spoken (spoke) 
trodden (trod) 


The Fourth Class includes verbs that have a in the 
Present, oo (o, a) in the Past, and mostly a in the Perfect 

The less altered verbs of the Fourth Class have a in Pr., oo in P., and 
a in P.P. The more altered verbs have a in P., and mostly have weak 
forms of P. and P.P. 

Pr. P. P.P' 

take I took taken 

engrave I engraved ) engrsiYed [engraven] 

This compound ' engrave,' like the stem- verb 'grave' (which is com- 
paratively rarely employed), is mostly treated as a verb belonging to the 
New Conjugation. For the P.P. 'graven' see Job xix. 24. 

Pr. P. P.P. 

forsake | forsook | forsaken 

In First English the verb sacan = to fight, and for-sacan = to oppose 
and to deny. Hence apparently comes the word ' sackless ' ( = inoffensive), 
in the Swaledale dialect. 

Pr. P. P.P. 

grave I graved I graved [graven] 

lade I laded I laden 

The P.P. form ' loaden ' has arisen from a confusion of the two verbs 
" lade ' and * load,' which have the same meaning, but are historically distinct. 

Pr. P. P.P. 




shaped [shofpen] 
shaved [sliaven] 

In Modern English the compound ' understand ' is like the stem-verb in 
P. and P.P. forms. In Old English are found the P.P. forms ' under- 
standen' and 'understand! 





staved [stove] 

\ staved [siove] 


woke (waked) 

1 waked 

The meanings of this verb, and of its compound — awake, P. awoke 
(awaked), P.P. awaked — are transitive and intransitive. Both the old and 
the new forms of this verb are founded in First English. The Past * woke ' 
is found in good authors. 

The Fifth Class includes verbs that have i (long) in 
the Present, o (i, u) in the Past, and i (o, u) in the Perfect 

The long i in the Present has, in M.E., the diphthong sound of • eye.' 



The old vowel in the Past S. is a, which here and there appears in modern 
literature — for example, in the word ' drave,' found in Shakespeare. 

Pr. P. P.P. 

drive | drove [drme] driven 

abide | abode abode [aUdden] 

hyde' (= to wait for), with the P. 
P. P.P. 

In E.II. we have the simple verb 
forms ' bod ' and ' hode.^ 







bitten (bit) 



chidden (chid) 



hidden (hid) 



ridden (rode) 









shone [shined] 


slid \_slode'\ 

slidden (slid) 



smitten [smifj 



stridden Istrid'] 



struck \^stricJcen'] 


sLrove [^strave] 

striven [strovel 

The verb 


ive ' is not found in E.I. In ( 

)ld English are found both 

weak and strong 

P. forms of this verb. So 

the obsolete verb 'fpie' 

(= come to an 

i en 

d ' has for P. forms both 'fyr 

£d' and 'fonJ These are 

rare instances 


verbs borrowed from French a 

nd having strong forms of 






throve (thrived) 



wrote [wrif] 

written [wrW] 

The Sixth Class includes verbs that have ee (ea, oo) 
in the Present, and o in the Past and the Perfect Parti- 

Some verbs belonging to this class have become obsolete ; others have 
been mostly or entirely transferred to the New Conjugation, and of some 
forms of the Sixth Class in E.II. only such vestiges remain as are seen in 
the words ' cloven,' ' forlorn,' ' frore,' and * shotten.' The following are 
verbs of the Sixth Class in E.II. : — 






claf {pi. cloven) 
leas {pi. loren) 
seth {pi. suden) 
schot {pi. schoten) 




schot (schoten) 


The forms ' cloven ' and ' shotten ' are still used as adjectives. The 



"word ' forlorn ' ( = ' for-loren ' = utterly lost) is an alteration of an old 
P.P. belonging to a compound of ' leose.' The word ' frore,' used by 
Milton as an adverb, is a shortened form of ' froren ' ( = frozen), an old 
P.P. of ' freose ' (= freeze). 

There are only three verbs now remaining in the Sixth Class — ' freeze,* 
* chose,' and ' heave ' (intransitive). The last has a strong Past, used as in 
the example 'The ship hove in sight.' The P.P. hoven (or hove), which 
has a passive meaning (= inflated, distended), is heard only in dialects. 
[See * 20.] 



heave (m^r.) 





The Seventh Class includes several verbs that have ow 
(ew) in the three forms Present, Past, and Perfect Paiti- 

In forms of the more altered verbs belonging to this class the Present 
has the vowels a, o, y, and ay ; the Past has e and ea ; the Perfect Participle 
has e, a, ea, and ai. In the oldest Teutonic forms of some verbs in this 
class the initial sound of the stem is doubled in the Past, as in the Grothic 
Past form hai-hald ( = held). This reduplication in the Past led to assimi- 
lation and contraction. By this process vowel-changes in verbs like ' hold* 
are made clear. For evidence we refer to the Gothic language, to which 
First English is closely related. Several verbs of the Seventh Class have 
both weak and strong P.P. forms. 





crew [crowed"] 




crowed, crown \_crowen'] 



The compound 'befall' (= to happen) has the forms — P. befell, P.P. 


fly (as a 





lish, the forms of the two verbs 

Flee,' a Strong verb in E.I., has now the contracted forms of the Weak 
Conjugation :— P. 'fled,' P.P. 'fled.' In Modern English, as in Old Eng- 

fly ' and ' flee ' are often confused, 

I grown 

hewed (hewn) 
I held [Jiolden] 

The P.P. Jwldm is found in Acts ii. 24. The P. Participles upholden 
and withhclden are obsolete. Beholden means ' obliged,' or ' bound by duty.* 

















'Beat,' a partly exceptional verb, is placed here, because its oldest 
forms belong to the Seventh Class of Old Verbs in First English. 








mowed (mown) 



shown (shewed J 




sowed (sown) 


strewn "I 
strown J 







beaten (beat) 


To form the First Future Tense of the Compound 
Conjugation, we add to the Helping Verbs of that Tense 
the Infinitive without the sign ' to.' With the Helping- 
Verbs of other Compound Tenses in the Indicative Mood, 
and for the Compound forms of the Infinitive Mood, we 
use the Perfect Participle. When the Verb tells us that 
the Subject acts, the Verb is used in the Active Voice. 

The appended table gives forms and constructions required for trans- 
lating into English the six Tenses in the Indicative Mood of a Latin Verb 
— Present, Past, Perfect, Pluperfect, Future Imperfect, Future Perfect. 

OLD CONJUaATION— (^c^^i;e Voice). 


Any of the verbs 'bind,' 'come,' 'drive,' 'find,' 'give,' 
' see,' ' strive,' ' take,' ' write,' may be used, instead of ' know,* 
for exercises. 


S. I know 

thou knowest 
he knows 
Fl. we 1 

yon >know 
they J 

8. I knew 

thon knewest 
he knew 
PI. we -) 

you > knew 
they J 






I have 
thou hast 
he has 
we have 
you have 
they have 





I shall 
thou wilt 
he wiU 
we shall 
you will 
they will 






I had ^ 
thou hadst 
he had 
we had 
you had 
they had 

h known 

Future Perfect 
I shall 1 
thou wilt I 
he will 
we shall 
you will 
they will 


J- have known 


Verbal Nouns. 
(to) know 
(to) have known 

Participles (or Verbal Adjectives). 
Imperf. knowing 
Perf. IcQOwn 
Comp. Perf. having known 


The New Conjugation includes verbs belonging to the 
following classes : — 

(a) English verbs which, in the oldest known time, 
were conjugated with de as the ending of the Past Tense, 
and d as the ending of the Perfect Participle. 

(6) English verbs which have been transferred from the 
Old Conjugation to the New. Ex. : ' climb,' ' fare,' ' glide.' 

(c) Almost every Roman verb. 

The verb ' strive ' seems to be an exception. It belongs to the French 
estriver ; but its earlier form (streben) is Teutonic, though no representa- 
tive is found in E.I. 

d or ed is added to the stem to form the Past Tense. 

Ex. : Past, ' it move-d ; ' ' we depart-ed.' 


ed, after the dentals d and t, is a distinct syllable. 
Ex, : ' ended,' ' parted.' 

d keeps its own sound when the verb ends in a flat 
mute or in a vowel. Ex. : ' believ'd,' ' sooth'd,' ' prais'd.' 
\ATien the verb ends in a sharp mute d takes the sound 
oft. Ex,: 'kept.' 

Several modes of connecting the inflection d with the verb 
are seen in the Past forms of the following verbs : — ' praise,' 
' part,' ' carry,' ' remit,' ' rob.' 

' Praise ' takes the suffix d in the Past — ' praised.' ' Part ' 
requires ed to form the Past — 'parted.' 

' Carry' changes y to i, and adds ed in the Past — ' carried.' 
' Remit ' doubles the final letter, and adds ed in the Past — 
' remitted.' 

Monosyllables ending in a single, short consonant, pre- 
ceded by a single, short Towel, double the consonant, and 
add ed in the Past. Ex. : ' rob,' robbed.' 

Variations in the Forms of the New Conjugation are 
mostly made by contraction and assimilation. \_See § 2, 
' Sharp and Flat Sounds.'] 

Contraction means ' a drawing together ' of syllables, so as to shorten 
the pronunciation of a word. The Past of ' stop ' is ' stopp-ed,' which may 
be pronounced in two syllables, so as to keep the flat sound of d. But when 
the vowel e is dropped, and p and d come together, one must be made like 
the other — i.e. both must be sounded sharp or flat. If the sharp mute 
prevail, we have the pronunciation heard in ' stopt.'' This natural process 
is called ' assimilation.' Contraction introduces assimilation, and assimila- 
tion often leads to a change of spelling. Hence we have such forms of the 
P. and P.P. as * dropt,' ' stopt,' ' whipt,' ' blest,' ' past.' Nothing is said 
here to defend this mode of spelling. 

Vakiations of Forms in the New Conjugation are 
mostly represented by the following words : — ' let,' ' meet,' 
'lend,' 'build,' 'sell,' 'clothe,' 'keep,' 'pay,' 'bless,' 

Present. Past. Perfect Participle. 

let I let I let 

The following verbs, placed here with ' let,' have only 
one form for the Present, the Past, and the Perfect 
Participle : — 

' Bid ' (to offer a price), * cast ' ' cost,' ' cut,' ' hit,' ' hurt,' 
'put,' 'rid,' 'set,' 'shed,' 'shred,' 'shut,' ' sht,' ' split,'' 
* spread,' ' thrust.' 



In the following lists some words still used more or less are placed within 
curves. Obsolete words and others seldom heard, or having only special 
uses, arc set in Italic and placed within brackets. Old forms of contracted 
verbs are given in * 20. 

A second class is represented by the verb ' meet,' which 
has in its sound no change except the shortening of the 






lit (lighted = 


slid (slidden) 
shot [^shotterb] 














lit (lighted) 









In popular use the prepositional verb * light on ' ( = meet by chance) 
has for P. and P.P. ' lit on ; ' but the compound ' alight ' ( = dismount) has 

* alighted.' The stem liht ( = not heavy) is distinct from leoht ( = bright), 
and from the Latin stem in ' deliter ' (Old French), to -which belongs ' delight ' 
(in E.II. 'delit'). By the •wear and tear' of time words belonging to 
several stems are often reduced to a formal identity. 

Another class of verbs consists of such as cast off the 
stem consonant d and have t as the ending of the P. 
and the P.P. This class may be represented by the verb 









' Wend ' (= to go, or to turn) is found, with its Past ' wended,' in 
poetry ; but the form * went ' serves now as the Past of the verb ' go.* 

• Shend' (= to ruin, or to disgrace), of which the P.P. is fomnd in M.E., 
has the forms P. shent, P.P. s^t. 





bent (bended) 

bent (bended) 

blended [Uenie'] 

blended (blent) 











Several forms of contraction are included in the 
following classification. 

The verbs ' build ' and ' gild ' have hardly lost their complete forms for 
P. and P.P., but contracted forms of ' build ' are generally employed. 




I built 

Wisdom hath huilded her house.' 


gilt (gilded) 
girt (girded) 

I built [huilded] 

(Pboveebs ix. 1.) 

gilt (gilded) 
girt (girded) 

Thus shall ye eat it, with your loins girded.' (Ex. xii. 11.) 










In the precedmg two verbs ea (in E.I.) has been changed to long 6. 
Pr. P. P.P. 




clothed (clad) 



clothed (clad) 



Contractions and other variations of ' have ' are numerous in E.II. In 
the form ' clad,' the P. and P.P. of * clothe,' th has by assimilation been 
changed to d. In ' made ' we have a contraction of the old form ' makede.' 







bereft (bereaved) 




bereft (bereaved) 


' I am bereaved,' (Gen. xliii. 14.) ' Howe'e 

r bereft.' (Wordswobth,) 



cleft [clave] 



cleft [cloven] 
dealt [dealed] 

Pr. P. 
dream | dreamt (dreamed) | 

dreamt (dreamed) 

' We dreamed a dream,' (Gen. xli. 11.) 

* They dreamt,' (Wobds.) 



knelt (kneeled) 
leant (leaned) 


knelt (kneeled) 
leant (leaned) 

* And e'en his 

failings lean'd to virtue's side. 






lost [forlorn'] 


The verbs classified with ' keep ' shorten the vowel and take t instead 
of d, but in some instances retain the d and the connective e. 

The foUowiiig are examples of monosyllables changing 
y to i before d : — 






wept 1 



lay (to put "I 
down) J 






This transitive verb ' lay ' must be kept distinct from the intransitive 
lie ' ( = to lie down), of which the three forms are— 




stayed (staid) 

lain [lien] 

stayed (staid) 

The verbs * cry ' and * try ' follow the general rule that y preceded by a 
consonant is changed to i before ed. ' Staid ' serves as an adjective. 

In 'flee' and 
flexion = d. 

shoe ' the final e is cast off", and the in- 





In the P. and the P.P. of ' hear ' the connective vowel e is omitted. 


I heard 



The verb ' bless ' in one of its P.P. forms represents 
a class of verbs mostly pronounced as contracted and 
ending in t, and sometimes written as they are pro- 




blessed (blest) 



Other P.P. of this class are sometimes written as follows : — ' burnt,' 
' crost,' ' dwelt,' ' learnt,' ' past,' ' smelt,' ' spelt,' * spilt,' ' tost,' ' whipt.' 
Nothing is said here to defend this mode of spelling. 

The following list of deviations from the rule of the New 
Conjugation contains several verbs not included in the pre- 
ceding classes. [See * 20.] 







bet (to wager) 

bet (betted) 

bet (betted) 






burst (bursted) 









distracted [distraugJit] 



freighted [fraught] 



fretted [fret, fretten] 


hanged (hung) 

hanged (hung) 



hid (hidden) 


knit (knitted) 

knit (knitted) 


leapt (leaped) 

leapt (leaped) 


lifted [lift] 




loaded (laden) 

pen (to shut up) 





quitted (qnit) 


reached [raugW] 

reached [raught] 












wedded [ived] 


wet (wetted) 

wet (wetted) 


worked [wrought] 

worked [wrought] 

Of the old yerb 'wone' (= to dwell) the contracted P.P. 'wont' 
{ = habit) serves as a noun ; but the form * wonted,' used as a P.P., is found 
in M.E. 

Alterations of P. and P.P. are old in the verbs ' bring' (brought) ; 
' buy ' (bought) ; ' catch ' (caught) ; ' seek ' (sought) ; ' teach ' (taught) ; 
' think ' (thought). In First English guttural c and g preceding t, in the 
P. of the verbs ' bring,' ' seek,' ' think,' and ' work,' became h, and in the 
same verbs the stem-vowel was changed to o or ea. In Old English 
further alterations were made. The h in the P. was changed to gh or S ; 
the final c of the stem mostly became ch, and the stem- vowel was changed 
to ou or tx) an. Similar changes were made in Past forms of the verbs 
* catch,' ' fetch,' ' reach,' and ' stretch.' Hence are found — in Old, and partly 
in Modem, English— such variations in the Past as the following : — 













f(shte {andfetchde) 



strehte (and straugkt) 

caught (and catch' d) 
ratcffht (and reached) 
worhte (and wroitght) 


To form the First Future Tense of the Compound 
Conjugation, we add to the Helping Verbs of that Tense 
the Infinitive, without the sign ' to.' With the Helping 
Verbs of other Compound Tenses in the Indicative Mood, 
and for the Compound forms of the Infinitive Mood, we 
use the Perfect Participle. 

The appended table gives the forms and constructions required for trans- 
lating into English the six Tenses in the Indicative Mood of a Latin Verb — 
Present, Past, Perfect, Pluperfect, Puture Imperfect, Future Perfect. The 
constructions belonging to the Subjunctive Mood are noticed in § 23 
■and § 58. 

NEW CONJUGATION— (^c^ve Voice). 


One of the verbs ' bring,' ' command/ ' gnard,' ' guide/ 
*have,' 'make,' 'move,' 'praise,' may be used instead of 






I call 

thou callest 

he calls Icalleth] 

we 1 

you >call 

they J 

1 have 
thou hast 
he has [^hatJi] 
we have 
you have 
they have 


8. I called 
thou calledst 
he called 
Fl. we 1 

you > called 
they J 

8. I had 
thou hadst 
he had 
Fl. we had 
you had i 
they had J 





8. I shall 
thou wilt 
he will 

PI. we shall 
you will 
they will 




Future Perfect 
thou wilt 
he will 
we shall 
you will 
they will 

have called 



Verbal Nouns. 
(to) call 
(to) have called 

Participles {or Verbal Adjectives). 
Imperf. calling 
Perf. called 
Gomp. Perf. having called 


The Passive Voice of the Verb is used when the 
Subject is represented as receiving or enduring an action. 
Ex. : ' The tree was felled.^ 

The Verb in the Passive Voice has no peculiar in- 

The Perfect Participle is used with Helping Verbs ta 
form all the Tenses of the Passive Voice. 


Present ... 


Perfect ... 
Future Imperfect.., 
Future Perfect . . . 

he is praised. 

he was praised. 

he has been praised. 

he had been praised. 

he will be praised. 

he will have been praised. 

The appended tables give the forms and constructions required for 
translating into English the six Tenses of the Indicative Mood in the 
Passive Voice of a Latin Verb — Present, Past, Perfect, Pluperfect, Future 
Imperfect, Future Perfect. 



OLD COl^JJJGATION— (Passive Voice), 

to be known 

* There are not many Verbs of the Old Conjugation that 
can be used in the Passive Voice with reference to the First 
and Second Persons. For practice the verbs bind, find, see, 
may be used. 


S. I am 

thou art 

he is 
PI. we 

you are 

they are 






I have 1 

thou hast 
he has [^hath'] 
we have 
you have 
they have 

been known 

I shall 
thou wilt 
he will 
we shall 
you will 
they will 


be known 


I was 
thou wast 
he was 
PI. we were 
you were 
they were 

I had ] 



thou hadst i 
he had I , , 
PL we had bee^^o^ 
you had 
they had -J 

Future Perfect, 
I shall "] 


thou wilt 
he will 
PI. we shall 

have been 

you will 
they will J 

be known 


Verbal Nouns. 
(to) be known 
being known 
having been known 

Participles (or Verbal Adjectives). 
Perf. known 

Gomjp. Perf. having been known 



NEW C01^JJJGAT101^—(Passwe Voice). 

to be called 

Any of the Participles ' commanded,' * guarded,' * guided,' 
' praised,' * ruled,' may be used instead of ' called.' 







1 am 
thou art 
he is 
we are 
you are 
they are 



1 have 
thou hast 
he has [_hat7i] 
we have 
you have 
they have 

been called 


1 shall 
thou wilt 
he will 
we shall 
you will 
they will 

-be called 







1 was 
thou wast 
he was 
we were 
you were 
they were 

I had 
thou hadst 
he had 
we had 
you had 
they had 


been called 

Future Perfect, 
I shall 
thou wilt 
he will 
we shall 
you will 
they will 

have been 

be called 


Verbal Nouns. 
(to) be called 
being called 
having been called 

Participles {or Verbal A^'eciives), 
Perf. called 

Oomp. Perf. having been called 



The logical treatment of Clauses called * Subjunctive ' belongs to Syntax. 
[See § 68.] The following notes serve only to indicate some uses of Sub- 
junctive Verbal Forms in First Eiiglish and in Old English. 

In E.I. verbal forms in the Subjunctive Mood might ioWow 
sucli conjunctions as ' if,' ' that ' (= in order that), ' though,' 
'as if,' 'lest,' and 'whether,' when these words served to 
introduce sentences expressing subjective notions or supposi- 
tions. A wish or a purpose might also be expressed by means 
of a conjunction introducing a clause containing a verb in the 
Subjunctive Mood. 

It is not easy to avoid using here the seemingly pedantic word 
'Subjective;' for no other adjective can serve -well as a substitute. 
[See § 68.] 

The chief use of a verb in the Indicative Mood is to assert 
a fact. In the constructions now employed as substitutes for 
old forms belonging to the Subjunctive Mood, a sentence may 
express some notion of possibility, probability, or contingency, 
but it does not assert that an act has talcen place, is now 
taking place, or will tal^e place. This is the general character- 
istic of all forms and constructions rightly called Subjunctive. 

Ex. : ' If he were well educated, he would be a modest 

It may be noticed here that the forms 'could,' 'would,' 'should,' and 
' mi^^ht ' may be used with a Subjunctive meaning in the Present Tense. 
So we find ' wouldest' (wouldst) used in Old English. [See § 68.] 

To denote that the verb is not used to assert a fact, such 
conjunctions as have been named are used in E.I., and the 
verbs following have no endings to show distinctions of 
person. In M.E. the same rule is sometimes observed in 
the Present Tense, but is often disregarded. In examples 
where the old rule is observed, the infinitive form (for 
instance, ' have ') is used for all the three persons in the 
Singular, and in the Plural of the Present Tense ; but in the 
Past every verb — excepting the abstract verb be — has, in 
constructions belonging to the Subjunctive Mood of M.E., forms 
that serve also for the Past of the Indicative Mood. [See § 58.] 

In M.E. the name * Subjunctive Mood ' is given to a series of construc- 
tions or sentences, not to any distinct forms that belong to the 
Subjunctive, as the form 'writes' belongs to the Indicative Mood. 
[See § 68.] 



The Subjunctive forms of the abstract verb bedn, the old verb bindan, 
and the new verb haelan are given in the appended tables. 




Sing. PI. 

l."1 si, s^, I sin, s^, 

2. > sed, or j sedn, or 

3. J bed i bedn 





seo, or 
beo, be I 

seon, or 
beon, ben 


1.] I 1.1 

2. }be 2. ybe 

3j I 3.J 


3. J 



■were i 
■ware weren 
(etc.) I 


1. were 

2. wert 


Examples of Subjunctive Clatcses. — E.I. ' Sam hit sy sumor sam 
winter ' ( = Whether it be summer or ■winter). E.II. 'Ac be hii arise,' etc. 
( = But if they be arisen, etc.) M.E. 'If I be pleased to give a thousand 
ducats,' etc. 






I bind-an 
bind-e (-en) 
hsel-e j hael-an 

I (-eii) 





hel-en (-e) 





n \bind 
„■ ^heal 








de, or 


bond-en (-e) 

hel-e-de, or 


1. bound 

2. bound^st ^ bound 

3. bound 

1. heal-e-d 

2. heal-e-dst J> heal-c-d 

3. heal-e-d 


English Verbs have few inflexions. To supply the defects 
of the Simple Conjugation we have constructions in which 
verbs called auxiliaries serve to express variations of meaning 
more numerous and also more accurate than such as are ex- 
pressed by means of inflexions in Greek and Latin. The 
extended treatment of these constructions belongs rather to 
Syntax than to Etymology. Some writers — accepting a very 
extensive definition of the word ' Conjugation ' — have given 
the following classification of constructions ser-vdng to express 
notions of continuous or progressive action : — 



Present Progressive. — I am writing. 
Present Intentional. — I am going to write. 
Past Progressive. — I was writing. 
Past Intentional.— 1 was going to write. 
Future Progressive. — I shall be writing. 
Future Intentional. — I shall be going tb write. 

The expression ' about to write ' is sometimes used instead of ' going 
to write.' 

The ' Potential Mood ' (as defined by several grammarians) 
consists of a verb conjugated with one of the auxiliaries 
*may' or 'can.' The Potential Mood thus defined has four 
tenses : — 

Present. — I may {or can) write. 

Past. — I might (could, would, or should) write. 

Perfect. — I may {or can) have written. 

Pluperfect. —I might (could, would, or should) have written. 

The ' Potential Mood ' has, moreover, been described as 
including the following forms for the expression of progressive 
action : — 

Present Progressive. — I may be writing. 

Past Progressive. — I might (could, would, or shoidd) be writing. 

Perfect Progressive. — I may have been writing. 

Pluperfect Progressive. — I might (g^c.) have been writing. 

The definition of the Imperative Mood is sometimes ex- 
tended, so as to include such sentences as the following : — 
* Let me go ;' ' Let us play.' 

The auxiliary verb ' do ' is employed in constructions de- 
scribed as ' emphatic' Ijx. : ^1 do write ;' ' I did write.' 

The auxiliary ' do ' is also employed in the constructions 
called negative and interrogative, and in their combination. 
Ex. : ' He did not come.' ' Did you speak ? ' * Did you not 
speak ? ' 

In poetry and in old literature an inversion made in the 
usual order of words serves to denote interrogation. Ex. : 
' Sayest thou this thing of thyself ? ' ' Speakest thou not 
unto me ? ' ' Knowest thou not that I have power ? ' 


Verbs belonging to neither of the two Conjugations — Old 
and New — are called Irregular Verbs. 

The following ten verbs have irregular forms of conjuga- 



lion:— 'be/ *do/ 

dare ' (= ' venture '), * shall/ 

. go,'* can," 
' will,' * may,' ' ought,' * must.' 

Of these ten irregular verbs seven are called defective 
with respect to the number of their tenses. These seven 
verbs — originally Past forms of verbs — are used in the Present 
Tense : — ' can,' ' dare,' * shall, ' will,' ' may,' ' ought,' ' must.* 
Of these seven verbs five have now for the Past the forms 
given in the following table ; but the words ' could,' ' should,' 
' would,' and ' might ' may be used in the Present Tense, with 
a Subjunctive meaning. [_See § 58.] 








The two verbs ' ought ' and ' must ' may be used either in the Present 
or in the Past Tense, but ' must ' is rarely used for the Past. 


Present. Past. 


I am 

thou art 
he is 
we 1 

8. I was 

thou wast (or vjert, in poetry) 

he was 
PL we -) 

you > are 

they J 

you Were 
they J 




(if) I ^ 
„ thou 
„ he 
„ we 


S. (if) I were 
„ thou wert 
„ he were 
PL „ we T 

5» you 

„ they J 

„ you > were 
„ they J 



Verbal I 
(to) be 




Imp. being 
Perf. been 



The use of the form 'werf has been supposed to belong to the Subjunc- 
tive Mood, but it belongs also to the Indicative. Both ' wast ' and ' wert ' 
(in the 2nd person Past) are comparatively modern forms, used instead 
of the old form 'were.' [/Sfee * 20.] It is obvious that the ImperHtivo 
('be') cannot be employed without an adjunct, such as is seen in the ex- 
ample ' be still. ' The Indicative (3rd person Sing. Pr.) is correctly iised 
without any adjunct in Hebrews xi. 6. 



8. I do 

thou dost [doesti 
he does Idoeth, doth'\ 
PI. we ] 
you I do 

8. I did 
thou didst 
he did 
PI. we ] 
you I did 



Verbal Nouns. 
(to) do 

Imp. doing 
1 Perf. done 



8. I go 
thou ^ 
he go 

PI. we ^ 



BS \_goetli'] 


8. I went 

thou went-est Iwentsf] 
he went 
PI. we 

you went 




Verbal Nouns. 


(to) go 

Imp. going 


Perf. gone 



The original meaning of the verb wende = turn. Such forms of this 
verb as are found in M.E. poetry (' wend,' ' wends,' and ' wended ') belong 
to the New Conjugation. 

The old P.P. ago serves as an adjective in the phrase ' a long time ago,' 
and as an adverb in the phrase ' long ago.' 





8. I can 8. 

thou canst 
lie can 
Fl. we ] PI 

you t can 
they J 

The letter 1 in the Past forms, 
to the verb either in E.I. or in E.II. 

I could 

thou couldst \_could''st] 

he could 

we ] 

you L could 

they J 

could ' and ' couldst,' does not belong 

8. I dare 
thou darest 
he dares, dare 
PI. we 

you !- dare 



8. I 1 
PI. we 

Y durst 

you j 
they J 


Verbal Nouns. Participles. 

(to) dare i Imp. daring 

daring i Perf. dared 

in the Present Singular, 3rd person, the form * dare ' is historically 
correct. The transitive verb ' dare ' (to defy, or to challenge) is a regular 
verb of the New Conjugation. 


8. I shaU 
thou shalt 
he shall 
Fl we ] 

you I shall 
they I 



1 should 
thou shouldst Ishouldest] 
he should 
we \ 

you I should 



The original meaning of ' I shall ' = ' I have iucurred the guilt, and must 
therefore pay the fine.' Some dim memory of this original meaning has 
given rise to modem distinct uses of 'shall' and 'will,' when used as 
auxiliaries in the Puture Tense. [See § 46.] 





S. I will 

8. I would 

thou wilt 
he will 

thou wouldst [would' st"] 
he would 

PL we ] 

PL we ] 

you win 
they ) 


you would 

N.B. — The independent verb * will ' (seldom used) belongs to the New 





S. I may 
thou mayst 
he may 
PI we ] 

8. I might 

thou mightest [migJifst] 
he might 
PI. we ] 










8. I oug 

thou a 

he ou: 

PI we ^ 


west lahest (Ell.) 


8. I ought 

thou oughtest (Matt. xxv. 27) 
he ought 
PI we ) 





The tense of 'ought' depends on its context. {Set Jam^s iv. 16; 
Acts xvii. 29 ; LxncE xxiv. 26 ; Matth. xxv. 27.) 




Present. Past. 


The tense of ' must ' depends on its context. For its use in the 
Present Tense, see John iii. 7 ; ix. 4. For the Present Tense, used with 
reference to the Future, see John x. 16, and 1 Cor. xv. 53. For the use 
of the Past, see John iv. 4, and Luke xxiii. 17. The word 'context* 
means -words found connected with the verb in a certain sentence, or in a 
series of sentences. 

8. I ■ 

PI we 


8. I ^ 

PL we 



*26. ADVERBS.— E.I., E.II. 

Adveebs having forms borrowed from Adjectives have, in 
First English and in Old English, inflexions for degrees of 

In First English the regular endings of the three degrees 
are e, or, ost. In Old and in Modern English the compara- 
tive suffix is er, the superlative est. The following old forms, 
mostly irregular or defective, are more or less represented in 
Modem English : — 






aer (formerly) 




er (ar) 


feorr (far) 





lange (long) 


lenger (leng) 



late (late) 



latest (regular) 

lytle (little) 





micle (much) 

mare (ma) 


mikel (moche) 

more (mo, ma) 

mest (most) 



E.I. neah (nigh, near) 
E.II. neh 

oft (often) 

rat5e (early) 

wel (well) 
wel (well) 

yfele (ill, hadly) 
yvele (eville) 



ner (nere, neor) 


ofter (oftener) 


bet (bett) 
bet (bett) 


wors (worre) 




oftost (regular) 

rarest (regular) 

betst (best) 




In Modern English, Adverbs ending in ly are mostly 
compared by means of the Adverbs more (comparative) 
and Tiiost (superlative). 

But such adverbial forms as * rightlier,' ' earlier,' and ' earliest ' belong 
to Modern English literature. 

Degrees of diminution are expressed by means of the 
Adverbs less and least. 

The suffix ly is added to some Adjectives, and to some 
Adverbs having forms of comparison. Ex. : ' formerly, 
'firstly,' 'lastly,' 'mostly.' 

The uses of rtiore and most for comparison of adverbs are as old as their 
uses in the comparison of adjectives. 

Double forms in comparison of adverbs are not allowed in Modern 
English, but they occur in Old English, though not so frequently as double 
forms in comparison of adjectives. [See * 19.] 

Both comparison and proportion are denoted by such 
phrases as ' the more ' and * the less,* of which the uses are as 
old as the English language. 

' The glorious lamp of heaven, the sun, 
The higher he's a-getting, 
The sooner veill his race be run. 
And nearer he's to setting.' — Hebbick. 



The regular forms of inflexion are er (comparative) and 
est (superlative). 













Some Adverbs have irregular, and others have defective, 
degrees of comparison. 

The "word ' near ' is a comparative form ; but its first meaning is for- 
gotten, and it is therefore treated as an adverb of the positive degree. 

The comparative form ere {= ' before ') serves — mostly in verse — as a 
preposition and as a conjunction. The superlative form erst also belongs 
mostly to verse. The forms further and furthest strictly belong to the 
adverb forth. 



far (forth) 
ill (badly) 
near (nigh) 

rathe (obsolete) j 


The first meaning of the adjective brae's = swift, and in Old English 
the adverb ' rathe ' means • quickly ' or ' early.' Milton, in his phrase * the 
rathe primrose,' employs the word as an adjective. 

















rather (= sooner 

or more willingly) 





Words, when classified with respect to their original 
forms and to their derivation and structure, have the 
following names : — Eoots, Stems, Primary Derivatives, 
Secondary Derivatives, and Compound Words. 

A KooT, in English, is a word that cannot be derived 
from any other word in English. 

A Primary Derivative is a word of which the use, or 
the relation to other words, or the class to which it be- 
longs, is changed without the aid of a suffix. Ex, : the 
noun ' bond ' is derived from the verb ' bind,'' by changing 
the vowel. 

No attempt is here made to trace back any Modem English -word to its 
oldest root or crude form. In the -word ' action,' act is the stem and ion is 
the suffix. The crude form, or root, ag, is found in Greek and Latin, but 
does not distinctly exist as a word in English, though we have it in it& 
unaltered form in the word ' agent,' with a vowel-change in ' exigent,' and 
with loss of the vowel in ' cogent.' The distinction made between roots 
and stems has, with respect to the analysis of Secondary Derivations, no 
practical importance. Stems may be called modified roots. In the 
Secondary Derivative ' rid-er ' the root is rid, and in ' road-ster ' the first 
syllable, road, is a stem or a modified root. But the root and the stem are 
alike in this : — each is the main part or base of the word, of which the 
other part is a suffix. When we have to analyse a word only so far as to 
draw a line between the main part and the suffix, it is convenient to set 
aside, for the time, the different uses of the words ' root ' and ' stem,' and to 
call the main part the stem, though it may perhaps be a root. By some 
writers the convenient word 'base' is employed, so that it may serve to. 
denote either a root or a stem. 

The following verbs are examples of Roots in English : — 
'bear' (to carry), 'bind,' 'bless,' 'feed,' 'live,' 'lose,' 'ride," 
'sing,' 'strike.' 

The following nouns are called Primary Derivatives : — 
'bier,' 'bliss,' 'bond,' 'food,' 'life,' 'loss,' 'road,' 'song," 
' stroke.' 

Many words, without any change of form, are transferred, as parts of 
speech, from one class to another. For example, the following may be 
used as nouns or as verbs: — 'air,' 'beard,' 'fish,' 'foam,' 'hand,' 'land,*^ 
•mind,' 'sail,' 'seal,' 'show,' 'snow.' The following maybe used as ad- 
jectives or as verbs : — 'black,' 'level,' 'light,' ' open,' ' warm.' 

In one class of Primary Derivatives a vowel-change takes 


place. Ex. : ' hclit ' and ' hit ' (from ' bite '), a ' drove ' (from 

* drive '), a ' road ' (from ' ride '), a ' seat ' (from ' sit '), a 
^shot' (from 'shoot'), a ^ song ^ (from 'sing'), ^ stake ^ and 

* stock ' (from tlie verb ' stick '), and ' stroke ' (from strike '). 

In a second class the final consonant of the stem is 
changed. Ex. : ' ditch ' (from ' dig '), ^ proof (from ' prove '), 
and ' strife ' (from ' strive '). 

In a third class both the vowel and the final consonant are 
changed. Ux. : ' batch ' (from ' bake '), ^ frost ' (from ' freeze '), 
'Z*/e' (from 'live'), ' Zo5S ' (from 'lose '), 'we/T and ' t^oo/' 
(from ' weave '). 

Secondary Derivatives are mostly formed with the aid of 
English and Roman Suffixes. JEx. : ' lord-ship,' ' man-hood,' 
^act-ion,' 'drna-ment.' The suffixes ship and Aooc? are Eng- 
lish, but ion and 77ient are Roman, 

A Suffix is a word, or a part of a word, that has lost, 
partly or mostly, its own first meaning, and in many instances 
has suffered alterations of form. Thus it has been gradually 
reduced from the position of an independent word to a posi- 
tion that may be called menial, and it now serves to modify 
more or less the meanings ol other words. Ex. : the modern 
adjective and adverbial suffix ly is an altered form of the First 
English word and adjective suffix lie (= 'like'), of which 
the adverbial form is lice. The form ' like ' still holds its 
place as an independent word, bat ly is a suffix. 

The Stem is that part of a derivative word to which the 
meaning chiefly belongs. To the Stem a suffix is appended, 
in order to change the meaning and the use of the word, or to 
remove it out of one class among the Parts of Speech into 
another Ex. : the Stem ' good ' is an adjective ; the Secondary 
Derivative, 'gdod-ness,' is an abstract noun. The Stems 
' child ' and ' man ' are nouns, but the words ' child- like ' and 
^ man-ly ' are adjectives. 

Several suffixes have comparatively definite uses in the formation of 
Secondary Derivatives, 

Of other suffixes the use has become indefinite. For example, dom still 
retains a reference to dominion in the word ' kingdom ; ' but the uses of on 
and ion are various, or indefinite, in the words ' dragon/ ' champion,' 
•' million,' and ' minion.' 

Secondary Derivatives are, with respect to their etymo- 
logy, divided into two classes. The first includes words 
formed with the aid of English suffixes. The second includes 
words with Roman suffixes and a few endings of Greek words. 
Each class contains nouns, adjectives, and verbs. Adverbial 
suffixes are English. 




First may be noticed some brief forms, or vestiges, of 
derivative endings, that are now hardly noticed as suffixes. 
Of these several belong to names of the seasons of the year 
and other natural transitions, to names of implements and 
operations in agricnltiire, and to names of plants and animals. 

The order of suffixes — both English and Eoman — in the lists that fol- 
low, is not alphabetical, but has reference to final sounds thus classified : — 
vowels (i, y, .e, a, o, u, w) ; liquids (m, n, 1, r) ; labials (p, b, f, v) ; den- 
tals (t, th, d) ; sibilant dentals (s, c, sh, ch, g) ; gutturals (k, c, ique, 
ch, g). Sharp sounds — labial, dental, and guttural — are placed before flat 
sounds, and therefore iff (in 'bailiff') is placed before ive (in 'native'), 
though both represent one Latin suffix. No notice is taken of the silent 
final e in such suffixes as ate and ive. [/See * 2,] 




Examples of Uses. 
meadow,' 'shadow,' ' sparrow,' * swallow. 

' ' storm,' ' stream,' ' 
morn,' 'rain,' ' 


1, le, el 


'blossom,' 'gleam,' 
' corn,' ' heaven,' 

' thorn,' ' wolkin ' (= the sky). 
'apple,' 'fowl,' 'nettle,' 'ouzel,' 'saddle,' 

' sickle,' ' snail,' ' throstle,' ' weazel.' 
'fddder,' 'hunger,' 'laughter,' 'slumber,' 
' summer,' ' thunder,' ' timber,' * water,' 
^ ' weather,' 'winter,' 'wonder.' 

( : ' belt,' ' craft,' ' dint,' ' draft,' ' emmet,' ' flint,' 
. J i ' frost,' ' harvest,' ' hornet,' ' malt,' ' market,' 

, jj *mist,' 'night,' 'shaft,' * thicket," thirst,' 

1 1 ' wort ' (= any plant). 

' Spring,' ' Summer,' and ' Winter ' are English names ; ' Autumn ' is a 
Latin name, but ' harvest' (harf-est) is English. 

Examples of Uses. 
' breadth,' ' depth,' ' earth,' 'growth,' ' health,' 

* heath,' ' mirth,' ' month,' ' tilth,' 'warmth,' 

'wealth,' 'width.' 
'deed,' 'field,' 'fold,' 'ground,' 'herd,' 

'land,' 'need,' 'speed,' 'strand,' weald,' 

' wind,' ' yard.' 
Suffixes having the sound of final S, and 

others having the sound of s preceded by a 

guttural (as in cs = x), are found in the 

words ' eaves,' ' flax,' ' fox,' * goose,' 

' horse,' and ' ox.' 


d, de 


«l8, a noun suffix in E.I. and E.II., does not belong to M.E. 



Examples of Uses. 
k I ' hawk,' ' lark,' ' milk,' ' stork,' ' work.' 

Of the following First English Suffixes some, when found 
in names of persons, have reference to character, position, and 
occupation. Others have a diminutive or contemptuous 
meaning. The order is that of the preceding list. 

Suffix. Examples of Uses. 

f\ (NotfoundinE.I., 

k-in J is in E.II. dimi- 

i I nutive) 

In Middle High Grerman ek-in, and in Mecklenburg Lo"w Grerman ek-en. 
( = Modern High Grerman ch-en), is a diminutive suffix. 

kilderkin,' lambkin.' ' Per- 
kin ' and ' Perkins ' are di- 
minutive forms of ' Piers.' 




ard, art 

aid, old 

E.I. ere 

Examples of Uses. 
'baker,' 'fisher,' 'fuller,^ 
' leader,' ' rider, ' ' spider *' 
(= spinner), ' waggoner.' 
In E.I. the suffix est-re is the feminine of ere. 
In M.E. only one word — ' spinster ' — remains^ 
of several feminine nouns that, in Old English 
of the earlier time, had the suffix stere, which, 
at a later time, was freely employed in f orming^ 
masculine names, such as correspond with the 
M.E. nouns ' Baxter ' (= baker), ' Brewster' 
(= brewer), and ' Webster ' (= weaver). 

' braggart,' ' Richard,' ' slug- 
' Harold,' ' Oswald.' 
'hillock,' 'paddock.' 

heard (strong) 
weald (power) 

00, uc 

ock has not always a diminutive meaning. The word ' paddock ' may 
= a small field, or a toad. In * mattock ' the ock takes the place of Og in 
the Cymraeg word ' matog.' 

Examples of Uses. 
' Grddwulfing ' (son of Gdd- 

' Will-ing-ton ' (name of a 

village) . 
' cyn-ing ' (king), ' lord-ing ' 

' farth-ing ' (one of four 

parts) . 
'darling,' 'worldling.' 

Several English Suffixes are used in the formation of ab- 
stract nouns, or names of general notions. 




local, etc. 


denoting rank 







Of these suffixes the meanings cannot always be expressed in precise 
terms. For example, lock (representing lac) in ' wedlock ' seems to have 
no force more than that of the abstract sufl&x ing. In E.I. the noun wedd 
= a pledge, and ' wedlock ' = plMg-ing. In ' h^m-lock ' the sufl&x repre- 
sents leac ( = a plant). In ' know-ledge ' the second syllable is an altera- 
tion of lac. This suffix seems to be as vague or abstract as the verbal 
l^can, employed in forming such compound verbs as geriht-l^can (to 
make right), and sumor-laecan (to make for summer). 

In the appended list the order of final sounds is observed. 

Examflea of Uses. 







hood, head 



dSm (abstract) i 

scipe (shape) | 

scipe (rank) 

scipe (abstract) 

t in E.I. 

6 (abstract) 

had (state) 




' kingdom,' 'thraldom, 

' landscape ' (old form = 

' landskip '). 
' lordship,' ' worship.' 
' fellowship,' ' friendship.' 
' might,' ' right.' 
' growth,' ' health,' ' truth. 
' godhead,' ' manhood.' 
' hatred,' ' kindred.' 
' knowledge.' 

In E.I. are found the nouns reaf-lac (robbery) feoht-lac (warfare). 




E.I. (abstract) 

E.I. nng, ing 

inge, ing 

Examples of Uses. 

' goodness,' ' likeness.' 

' wedlock.' 

in abstract nouns : * bless- 

in many words that — like 
* being ' and ' coming ' — 
serve as nouns and as ad* 
jectives. [iSee * 20.] 


The following are Old French and Latin Suffixes, some- 
times serving in the formation of concrete nouns. The order 
has still reference to final sounds. 

on, ion 


L. 0, id (gen. 
onis), mascu- 
line ; Fr. on 

L. 0, id (gen. 
onis), mascu- 
line ; Fr. on 

Examples of Uses. 

* centurion,' ' dragon,* ' ma- 
son,' ' minion ' (a pet). 

' bufioon,' ' pantaWon,' ' pol- 
troon,' ' saldon.' 




Examples of Uses. 


Fr. al, el, elle ; ) 
L. dlis j 

' channel,' ' chattel.' 


Fr. er-elle 

' mackerel,' ' pickerel.' 



Fr. el, elle ; L. | 
ellus (-a, -UTYi) ) 

'busheV 'vessel' 


Fr. al, aille ; L. ] 
dlis, PI. alia | 

' animal,' ' victuals.' 

ule, cle 

L. iilus 

' globule,' particle.' 

ar, er 

Fr. ier, iere 

' frontier,' ' larder,' * river.' 


Fr. oir, eoire 

' censer,' ' manger.' 


Fr. re 

' cinder,' ' monster,' ' wafer.' 


L. eta, etes 

' comet,' ' planet.' 

et, ot 

Fr. et, ot 

'ballot,' 'coronet,' 'islet,' 
' streamlet.' 

ade, ad 

Fr. ade 

' brigade,' ' cascade,' ' salad.' 

ice, is 


Fr. ice, is -, L. " 
icms, icium, itium 

' hospice,' ' lattice,' ' trellis.' 


Fr. as5e 

' crevice.' 

ace, ass 

Fr. fern, ace, 
mas. as 

asse ; 

' cuirass,' ' cutlass,' ' gri- 
' mace,' ' terrace.' 


Fr. age ; Med. L. 

' cottage,' ' vicarage,' ' vil- 



Roman Suffixes are used in the names of countries and 
for national names, as in the following nouns, here arranged 
with reference to their final sounds : — 

Examples of Uses. 
' Normandy.' 
' Pharisee.' 
' Arabia,' ' Persia.' 
' Spain.' 
' Chaldean.' 
' Palatine.' 
' Italian.' 
' Chinese.' 
' Romanesque.' 

The sufl&xes ite and ot, in 'Israelite' and ' Cypriot,' are shortened forms 
of the Greek noun-endings lies and dies. 

The Roman Suffixes ant (and ent), er, or, and y are ex- 
tensively used in words relating to government, the Church, 
the army, to social distinctions, and to literature and art. 
'The order, again, has reference to final sounds. 



Fr. ie 


Fr. e, ee 


L. ia 


Fr. agne 


Fr. Sen 


Fr. in, ine 


Fr. ien 


Fr. ois 


Fr. esque 



ic (ick in \ 
old spel- \ 
ling) J 

Fr. a7i, ain; L. 

anus (-a, -um) 
Fr. ain; Jj.amts 

(-a, -um) 
L. anUfS (-a, 

-um) ; Fr. ain 
Fr. ain 

Fr. ien; L. ^{m2«s 
Fr. al, aille ; L. 

L. ariuSj aris ; 

Fr. aire, ier, 

Fr. nominative,) 

eres ) 

L. z'or ; Fr. ieur \ 

L. ^-or ; Fr. ob- \ 
lique case-end- I 
ing, eor J 

L. t-or, s-or \ 

L. arius ; Fr. 
ter, a?ire 

Fr. if, ive; L. ] 
ivus {-a, -um) j 

Fr. if, vve ; L. 
*vz*5 (-a, -um) 

L. ent-em, ant- 
em ; Ft. aw^, 

L. dtus 

Fr. is^e ; Gr. istes 

L. adj. ending \ 

hundus ; Fr. h 

hond f 

Gr. and L. as, 

Fr. i'ce, *s ; L. 

itius, icius 

Gr. ikos ; L. 

Examples of Uses. 
' publican, ' veteran.' 

'villain' (a serf). 

' citizen,' ' warden.' 

* sovereign.' 

' patrician,' * plebeian.' 

' general,' ' menial.' 

'dowager,' 'scholar,' 'Tem- 
plar,' 'vicar.' 

' engineer.' 

' inferior ' ' senior,' (adjec- 
tives and nouns). 

' Saviour.' 

' author,' 'creditor,* ' rector,' 

'traitor,' 'tutor.' 
' bachelor,' ' chancellor,' 

' proprietor,' ' warrior.' 

' bailiff,' ' plaintiff.' 

' captive,' ' native.' 

' client,' ' defendant,' ' pre- 
sident,' 'regent,' 'serjeant,* 
' servant,' ' student.' 

* advocate,' ' potentate.' 
'artist,' ' pianist,' ' royalist.* 

' vagabond ' (a noun or an 

dryad, ' monad,' ' Naiad,' 
* nomad,' ' triad.' 

' apprentice,' ' novice.' 

' catholic ' (noun and ad- 
jective), ' domestic ' (a ser- 



The following Roman Suffixes (with which the Greek 
ending iMs is placed here) serve to form abstract nouns. 
The order still has reference to final sounds : — 






ar, er 

or, our 

L. dtus, ata, ia, 
ium; Fr. e, ee, 

Er. "nioin 

L. entia ; Er. ] 
ence j 

Er. er-ie \ 

L. tat- em ; Old \ 
'Fr.tet,te','New \ 
Er. te J 

L. and Gr. sis 

Er. ue, tu 

L. io (feminine, "] 
and denoting i 
action, or a 
state of being 
=the result of 
an action. To Y 
io belong also 
I I collective and 
I concrete mean- 
ings, as in ' na- 
tion,' ' lotion ') 
( j L. arium, aria; 
Er. aire, ier. 


Er. eur 

L. or, oris ; Er 
eur, our 

Examples of Uses. 

' comedy,' ' courtesy,' ' mo- 
desty,' 'study,' 'tragedy.' 

' ceremony,' ' testimony.' 

' clemency, ' infancy.' 

' chivalry,' ' poetry,' ' re- 

' antiquity,' ' piety.' 

' ecstasy,' ' idiosyncrasy.' 
' value,' ' virtue.' 

' admiration,' ' cession,' 
' reason.' 

I ' danger,' ' grammar,' 
' prayer.' 

' grandeur.' 

' behaviour,' * honour ' (or 
'honor'), 'splendour.' 

A hybrid word is made when a Roman suffix is appended to an English 
stem. In 'behaviour' be is an English prefix, 'have is an English 
stem, and our is a Eoman suffix. [See § 39.] 


Examples of Uses. 


L. ura ; Er. ure 

'culture,' 'nature.' 


Er. ir 

' leisure,' ' pleasure.' 


L. itus 

' credit,' ' merit.' 


L. atus 

' consulate,' ' episcopate 




Examples of Uses. 


atdnement,' ' employment.' 

L. mentum (both - 
abstract and 
concrete, as 
in 'fulfilment' T 
and ' pave- | 
ment ') J 

The word ' atonement ' is formed from ' at one ' ( = at peace with one 
another). The Old English parts of the word = at oon = ' at one.' 

Examples of Uses. 
L. tudo (ab- 
stract and col- 




ice, ise 




L. antia, entia ; | 

Fr. ence, ance ) 

L. entia : Fr. ] 

ence ) 

Fr. age (abstract \ 
L. aticum I 

Fr. ice, ise | 

Gr. ihos 

Fr. ique \ 

Fr. esqice \ 

fortitude,' 'multitude,' 

' ignorance,' ' substance.' 

' innocence,' ' penitence.' 

' courage,' ' bomage,' ' lan- 

'cowardice,' 'justice,' 'trea- 

' physics,' ' politics.' 

the ' antique ' (= a style of 

' burlesque,' ' pictuiesque ' 
(nouns and adjectives). 

The preceding analysis shows that among Nouns having Eoman Sufl&xes 
many end with the vowel y, or with the sounds of liquids and dentals. 
With respect to meanings, these Nouns are rather abstract than concrete. 
Of the examples given some are late imitations of old derivatives coming, 
through the medium of French, from Latin. 


Three Greek terminations of words — ikos, iakds, and 
ismds — serve to form abstract nouns and some adjectives. 
The first (ikds) has, in English, the forms ic and ics, and 
fi'om the second we have the ending iac in a few words. The 
meaning in both =: ' belonging to,' and the more definite 
meaning is found in the preceding stem. The third suffix 
(ismos), reduced to ism, has meanings such as these : — ' a 
tendency to'— 'the profession of — 'the prevalence of — 
* adherence to the principles of — 'belief in the doctrine ' or 
ii^the system indicated by the stem- word — lastly, the doctrine 



or the system itself. As the word politeia means 'the 
government of a state,' ' politics ' must include all things 
' belonging to ' that government. ' Platonism ' may mean the 
doctrine taught by Plato, or adherence to his principles, or 
some tendency towards acceptation of his teaching. 

In several adjectives ending in ic the suffix comes (through 
the Latin icus, or through the French ic, ique) from the 
Greek ikos. Ex. : * catholic,' ' domestic' 


Of these suffixes ed, en, fill, some, and y, are used to 
denote, more or less, the possession of a quality indicated by 
the stem-word. Participial forms in ed were used in E.I., 
and are extensively used in Modern English in cases where no 
verb exists to which such forms belong. Ex. : * right-minded,* 
though it does not belong to the verb ' mind,' is good English, 
and in structure is like ' open-hearted ' and ' left-handed.* 
The uses of other adjective suffixes are shown in the appended 
table. The word ' biixom ' shows that both the stem and the 
suffix may come from E.I., though the derivative itself is not 
found there. 


Examples of Uses. 



E.I. ig 

1 iht 



' pretty,' ' speedv.' 
* stony,' ' thdrnf .' 
' goodly,' ' manly.' 
' fallow,' ' yellow.' 



' buxom,' ' winsome.' 



' oaken,' ' woollen.' 

en 1 

P.P. ending 

'frozen,' 'written.' 



* eastern,' ' northern.' 

11, le 


* evil,' ' little.' 



' fickle,' ' nimble.' 



' bitter,' ' other.' 

it, id 


P.P. ending 
in Northern 
Dialect of 

* right,' ' swift.' 

' drownit ' ( = drowned), 
* crookit ' ( = crooked). 



' steadfast.' 




' selcouthe' (= strange), 'un- 



'cold," old.' 


P.P. ending 
ed (od) j 

' beaked,' ' hdrned.' 




Examples of Uses, 

E.I. feald 
fj weard(= 
ward * tending ' or 

* turned') 
less leas 

esh s-c 

ish isc ^ 

k c 

like Itc 

taking the 

ing place of 

i inde, etc. 

and (or ande), the Pr.P. ending of the Northern Dialect, ende in the 
Midland Dialect, and inde in the Southern, are generally = in meaning to 
the participle and adjective ending ing ; but in some E.II. words they are 
= to the suffix in a-ble or i-ble. 

* frdward ' = tnrned away 
from (good = perverse). 

' endless,' ' fearless.* 
' fresh,' ' rash.' 

* English,' ' brownish.' 
' blank,' ' dark.' 

' childlike ' ' lifeUke.' 


* running.' [_See 




Examples of Uses. 


L. arius 

' hereditary,' * primary.' 


Inus, tmis 

' crystaline,' ' feline.' 

an, ane 


* human,' ' humane.' 



* antediluvian,' ' patrician 


Uis, ilis 

' fissile,' ' servile.' 



' 6qual,' ' jdvial.* 



' flexible,' ' visible.' 

ble, pie 

plus, jplex 

' double,' ' triple.' 


oris or arms 

' polar,' ' regular.' 



' active,' ' instructive/ 



' desolate,' ' labiate.' 



' eminent,' ' latent.' 



' opulent,' ' violent.' 



' acid,' ' rigid,' ' vivid.' 



* moribund.' 



' jocund,' ' rubicund.' 



' aqueous,' ' fabulous.* 



* verbose.' 

domestic,* * p<5b*tic.* 

icick \ ^^^^osih'^^^'^X 
K Fr. ic, %que 

In the older style of spelling, ick was formerly used for io. 

Suffix. Examples of Uses. 

10, ique 



Fr. esque 

antic' (= odd), * antique' 
(= ancient), 
burlesque,' * picturesque.* 




Verbs having First Englisli stems have lost their infinitive 
suffixes, an and ian. In verbs borrowed from Latin and 
French almost all Roman noun suffixes are found, excepting 
a,bout a dozen used to form abstract nouns. 

Suffix, Examples of Uses. 

' cleanse,' ' dye,' ' give,' ' lie,' 
' ride,' ' tease.' 

' carry,' ' remedy,' ' vary.' 

' magnify,' ' terrify.' 

' beacon,' ' beckon,' 
' christen.' 

The n here represents, not the E.I. verbal ending ian, but the n of the 
€tem preceding that lost suffix. Some verbs in en are imitative. 

Examples of Uses. 
from nouns in ' bridle,' ' fiddle,' ' nail,' 
1, el {etc.) ' sail,' ' whistle. 

( from nouns in A 


€11, on 

1, le 

a vestige of en 
(ien) in E.II. 
Fr. ier (oier) 
¥r.fier, from L. \ 
ficare ) 

E.I. n-ian ] 


t, te 





er, or (etc.), 
and from ad- 
jectives, in the 

Fr. re (?) 

L. tare ; Fr. ter 

L. atum and 

Fr. ser 

Fr. iser ; Gr. 

Fr. iss (in verbs 
in ir) 

' better,' ' feather,' ' fetter,' 
' foster,' 'further,' ' gather,' 
' hinder.' 

' render,' ' surrender.' 

* denote,' ' treat.' 

'agitate,' 'create,' 'migrate,' 

' renovate. ' 
' erase ' ' reverse ' ' use.' 

civilize,' ' exorcise,' 


nourish,' ' punish,' 







Examples of Uses. 
boldly,' ' hardly.' 

E.I. lice ( 


lice ( = \ 
; E.II. 

liche) / 

E.I. msel (= 

part of time, 

* piecemeal,' 



A derivative word is called a hybrid when it consists of parts belonging 
to two languages. Ex. . in ^pUce-meal ' the first part is French, the second 
is English. 


ward, or 



E.I. weard (an 

adj. ending = 

* tending ' or 

' turned ') 
E.I. weg (=a 

E.I. wise (= 

' manner ') 

Examples of Uses. 
forwards, ' ' hdmeward. ' 


In the Northern Dialect gate, or gates, takes the place of both tuays and 
toise. Thiis ' al-gates' = 'by all ways,' and ' thus-gate' = ' thus wise,' or 
'* in this way.' 





Examples of Uses. 
darkling ' (Milton). 


In Northern forms linge becomes linges, which in the Scottish Dialect is 
Teduced to lins, as in ' aiblins ' (perhaps), and ' sidelins ' (sideling). The 
Old English adverbial ending es is changed to ce in the words 'once,' 
* twice,' ' thrice,' ' hence,' • thence,' and ' whence.' In * hither,' ' thither,' 
4ind ' whither,' ther takes the place of der in Old English. 



E.I. (lang 

Examples of Uses. 
along (adv. and jprep.) 
E.I. andlang. 


When two words — each having, when placed apart, a 
f'distinct meaning — are placed together, so as to make one 
word, the word is called a Compound. Ex, : ' bowstring.' 

The Chief Words in a sentence are the Noun, the Pro- 
noun, the Adjective, and the Verb. Adverbs, Prepositions, 
and Conjunctions are called Particles. [See § 7.] 

Compound Words are divided into two Orders. In the 
First Order one Chief Word is connected with another. 
[Ex, : ' landmark ' ( = noun + noun) ; ' freeman ' ( = ad- 
jective + noun); ' spendthrift' (= verb + noun). 


In the Second Order a Compound is made by con- 
necting one of the Chief Words with a Particle. Ex. : 
' overflow ' ( = preposition + noun). 

Compounds of the First Order are described in §§ 34, 35, and 36. 

To indicate the several forms of Compounds the sign + is used, with 
the initials N (for noun), A (for adjective), and V (for verb). Thus 
N + N = one noun connected with another, or added to another. 

Compounds are more or less firm, or established by common use. To 
some extent firmness is indicated by the accent thrown upon the first part, 
and by omitting the hyphen, as in ' sunrise ' and ' sunset,' which may be 
contrasted with 'wine-merchant' and with ' steel-pen.' But the hyphen is 
often printed in firm compounds, such as ' sea-coast ' and ' play-time.' 

Excepting two or three words, compound nouns formed of First Eng- 
lish stems have no connective vowels. In ' hand-i-work ' i is not a con- 
nective rowel, but represents the first syllable of geweorc ( = weorc = 
work). In ' handy work ' and ' handy book ' the word * handy ' is a modem 
form of the Old English adjective ' Mnde,'' of which the first (or etjrmo- 
logical) meaning = ' dexterous.' The second meaning (which in the olden 
time was more commonly accepted) = ' courteous,' or ' benign,' and ' gra- 
cious.' \,See ' Specimens of Early English,' Part. II. By Morris and 


A Compound Word that serves as a Noun may have one 
of these three forms :— N 4- N ; A -f- N" ; Y -f N. Ex.: 
* fisherman,' ' freeman,' ' spendthrift.' 

N -\- N. — As general rules for this form, the following- 
may be given : — The first word is the defining word, or names 
the species. The second word names the genus. The firsfc 
word has the accent. Ex. : ' bowstring.' [See § 36, on ex- 
ceptions to the rule of accent.] 

The first noun may serve, as an adjective, to define the 
second, with respect to its kind. Ex.: * oak-tree,' 'cherry- 

The first may define the second, with respect to materials. 
Ex. : ' flint-glass,' a ' steel-pen,' 

I'he first may define the second, with respect to some 
likeness. Ex. : ' bell-flower.' 

The first may have the use of a noun in the Possessive 
Case. Ex. : Wednesday = Woden's day, in E.I. Wodnes 
dag ; Thursday = Thor's day, in E.I. punres dag ; Gospel = 
God's word, or message. 

But in numerous examples the first word in a compound serves instead 
of a participial or a prepositional phrase that might be used as an adjective. 
In the words 'a lily growing in water,' the phrase 'growing in water' 


serves to express clearly the meaning of the first -word in the compound 
noun 'water-lily.' Many compound nouns, consisting formally, of two 
parts, have, when translated by means of phrases, at least three, parts, of 
which one is a preposition. To express fully the meaning of one of these 
compounds, the order of its two parts must be inverted, and a preposition 
must be placed between them. Ex. : a ' chiirch-yard ' is ' a yard near the 
church.' The general law or habit of forming compounds is this : — two 
words between which some well-known relation exists are placed together, 
and it is assumed that a simple reference to usage will make their relation 
clear. In many instances no sign of connexion is placed between the two 
words, as when we write, ' He was Jcilled by a cannon ball.' In other cases 
a hyphen is set between the two words, as in the examples : ' bank-note,' 
' cannon-hall,^ * cypress-trees,' ' good-natured,' ' hackney-coach,' * h^n-coop,' 
' tilt-yard,' ' weak-sighted.' When by frequent use the two parts of a com- 
pound are so closely united that we cease to think of them as two, they 
are written as one word. Ex. : ' Cheapside,' ' grasshopper,' ' lawsuit,' 
'shopkeeper,' 'sunset,' 'workman.' The general rule — not strictly ob- 
«erved — is to drop the hyphen when the compound has been made firm. 
The place of the accent is not in every instance clearly defined. 

The following are examples of prepositional phrases re- 
quired to express fallj the meanings of some compound 
nouns : — 

' bell-wether ' = the sheep with the bell. 

' birth-right ' = right acquired hy birth. 

' cannon-ball ' = a ball to be fired out of a cannon. 

' fire- wood ' = wood./or making fires. 

' grasshopper ' ^ a cricket that hops on grass. 

' gold- wire ' = wire drawn out of gold. 

' landlord ' = owner of land. 

' May-fly ' = a fly appearing in May. 

' pen-knife ' = 'a knife for making pens. 

' i-ail-way ' = a road made of rails. 

' sea-breeze ' = breeze blowing from the sea. 

' self-control ' = government of one's self. 

Many compound nouns are partly made of verbal 
nouns ending in ing. 

Ex. : ' eating-house ' = a house for eating. 
' fishing-rod ' = a rod for fishing. 
' landing-place ' = a place for landing. 
' walking-stick ' = a stick for walking. 

It is obvious that, in these examples, the words ending in ing must not 
be described as qualifying adjectives, or as immediately connected with 
their following nouns. Ex. : in ' walking-stick ' the first part does not de- 
note a quality belonging to the second. 

Of some compounds the meanings must be found in their history. Ex, : 
' gossip ' is a corrupt form of godsib, which in E.II. is changed to 'gossib.' 
^f the two words united in the comjyund the first was once equivalent to 


tlie sacred name * Grod,' and the second (sib) had the meaning of the word 
' akin.' A godfather was therefore called godsib, as one who was made 
akin, or closely related, to another by a sacred relationship. At a later 
time the word was made to serve as a name for any familiar friend, and 
then it was nsed to describe familiar or trivial conversation. 

A + N. — In compounds of this class the adjective mostly 
retains its ordinary use, and is placed in immediate attributive 
relation with the noun. Ex. : ' blackberry,' ' freeman,' ' holi- 

V + N. — Compounds of this class are less numerous than 
those of the classes already noticed. Ex. : ' pick-pocket/ 
'turn-spit,' 'turn-coat,' 'tiirn-key.' 


Among names of lands and towns in First English several 
are formed by adding to a more definitive word one of the 
words burh (borough), land (land), rice (realm), mseg^ 
(nation) . Some names of places, like names of persons, have 
been contracted and otherwise altered, so that their first 
forms are not readily seen. Thus at ]>8ere burh becomes 
'Atterbury' and ' Attenbury.' The r was lost when the 
grammatical gender of burh was forgotten, or n was inserted 
for the sake of euphony. Final words in names of places 
have historical interest. Some have in the course of time 
become so much worn or obscure that they look like suffixes, 
though they are words, and in many instances their meanings 
are known. A few words borrowed from Latin are found 
among them. Others are mostly, or exclusively, found in 
Northern Names. In English names of places the first word 
is definitive ; but in many Keltic names of the same class the 
second word is definitive. [See § 39.] 


A Compound Word that serves as an Adjective may have 
one of these two forms : — A + A ; N + A. 

The form V + A is rarely seen. Ex. : ' forg^t-ful.' 

A + A. — In some compounds of this class the relation of 
one word to the other may be simply expressed by * and ' or 
by the sign + . 

Ex. : ' bitter-sweet,' the name of a plant (woody nightshade, of which 
the Latin name is dulcamara) = bitter and sweet. 

But in more numerous compounds having the form A + A 


the first adjective defines the second, as in the examples 

* bright-r6d ' and ' riiddy-brown.' 

The second adjective may have the form of the Imperfect, 
or of the Perfect Participle. Ex. : ^ hard-working/ ' open- 
hearted,' 'high-minded.' 

In the last two examples a noun with the suifix ed serves as an adjec- 
tive having the form of a Perfect Participle. The verb ' shape ' exists, 
from which the adjective in 'well-shaped' is formed. We have no verbs 
from which we can form such adjectives as ' hearted ' and ' minded,' In 
other examples are found apparent Perfect Participles that are, in fact, 
nothing more than adjectives, of which the ending ed means 'supplied 
with.' These adjectives are good English words in E.I., as in M.E. [See 

N 4- A. — In some compounds of this class the nonn defines 
the adjective with respect to likeness. Ex. : ' niit-brown,' 

* snow-white.' 

The adjective having the form of the Imperfect Participle 
is preceded by a noun serving as the object. Ex. : ' friiit- 
bearing,' ' soul- stirring.' 

In some compounds the relation of the adjective to the 
preceding noun may be expressed by a preposition. 
Ex. : ' brim-ful ' = fall to the brim. 
* h^art-sick ' = sick at heart. 
' sea-girt ' = girt with the sea. 
' stead-fast ' = firm in a place. 
' thank-ful ' = full of thanks. 


Compounds of the First Order — i.e. those in which each 
word has a distinct meaning and is one of the chief parts of 
speech — are rarely used as English Verbs. The few examples 
found have the forms N + V and A + V. 

One almost obsolete word, of Latin and Norman-French origin — 
' vouchsafe ' — has the form V + A. The Latin vocdre salvum = N.F. 
vockier salf, E.II. vouche saf, vouchsafe ( = to promise safety ; or, with 
loss of its primary meaning, = to grant). 

mis, used in composition, is closely related with the noun 'miss' (a 
failure), but is used in E.I. as a particle. Ex. : mislaedan ( = mislead). 

In First English some compound verbs of the forms N + V and A + V 
have for the second part -IsBcan. Its meaning is rather vague, but it gene- 
rally has the force of ' to make,' ' to make for,' ' to become,' or * to come,' 
as may be seen in the examples appended. 

Ex. : efenlaecan = to become like, or to imitate. 

he >am hilse genealeehte = he came near (to) the house, 
nealsecan = to come near, 
winterlffican = to make for winter. 


N + V. — Compound verbs having this form are rare. 
Ux. : ' backbite,' ' browbeat,' ' waylay.' 

In 'back-bite' the noun is the object; 'brow-beat' = to threaten bi/ 
frowning ; ' way -lay ' = to beset in the way. 

Some apparent examples of the form N + V are doubtful. In ' back- 
slide ' the first word is a particle. In ' sooth-say ' the first word may be 
either a noun or an adjective. The verb ' parboil' looks like a compound 
of ' part ' and ' boil.' 

Such words as ' edify ' ' signify,' and ' multiply ' are in some Grammars 
placed among English Compounds of the First Order. It is true that, in 
Latin, their component parts are stems, but in English fy and ply serve 
only as suffixes. 

It must not be supposed that, because we may use such compounds as 
' book-learned,' ' moth-eaten,' ' new-fangled,' and ' wind-fallen,' we have any 
verb like ' fangle,' or that we may coin such compound verbs as ' book- 
learn,' ' moth-eat,' and ' wind-fall.' The compound ' new-fangled ' repre- 
sents the E.II. adjective ' new-fangle.' The compounds 'book-learned,' 
' moth-eaten,' and ' wind-fallen ' belong to the class N + A. The com- 
pounds ' high-minded ' and ' open-hearted' belong to the class A. + A.. The 
word ' wind-fall ' (a shortened form of ' wind-fallen ') is commonly used as 
a, noun. 

A -f V. — Compound verbs of this class are rare. Ex. : 
'fulfil,' 'rough-hew.' 

The latter word is found in the writings of Shakespeare. 

A compound word is sometimes used as part of another 

Ex. : ' husband-man.' Here ' hus-band ' = hus-bonda, a 
householder, or a peasant who has a fixed place of 
'lord-lieutenant.' ['lieu- tenant' = locum tenens, one 

holding the place of another. ] 
' Shepherd-Lord.' [' shep-herd ' = sceap-hyrde, a 

keeper of sheep.] 
' stirrup-leather.' [' stirrup ' := stige-rap, a rope for 
climbing up.] 

The word * stirrup ' may serve as an example of several old compounds, 
so far disguised by modern forms as to be no longer noticed as compounds. 
The following words belong to this class : — 

'curfew' (= Fr. couvre-feu). 

'orchard' (= E.I. ort-geard = h^rb-garden). 

Several words that look like English compounds are corruptions of 
French words. 

Ex. : ' cray-fish ' is most probably a corruption of the Old French word 

The accent in Compound Words of the First Order is 
mostly placed on the first or the definitive word, as in ' sun- 
rise ' and ' siinset.' 


But to facilitate, or to make distinct, its pronunciation, a compound 
may have the accent on the second -word ; or, in certain cases, may have 
two accents. 

Ex. : ' north-^ast,' ' north- w6st,' etc. ; ' w^U-h^ad ; ' ' lord-lieutenant.' 
In some instances doubt may exist with respect to the accentuation of 
compounds seldom used. In proportion as they become more and more 
familiar, the tendency of the accent to fall on the first part becomes 
stronger. It has already been noticed that accents serve to make verbs 
distinct from nouns. \8ee * 5.] In examples of compounds it will of 
course be understood that the accent given to a word used as a noun may 
be changed when that word serves as a verb. 


A Compound Word of the Second Order is formed by 
connecting or placing together a Chief Word or a Stem 
and a Particle. 

The Particle is placed before the Chief Word or the 
Stem, and is, therefore, called a Prefix. 

In the verb ' pre-fix ' the first syllable is the prefix and the second has 
•the accent ; but when the same word serves as a noun, the accent falls 
upon the pr6-fix. 

With respect to their sources, Prefixes are divided mainly 
into two classes — English and Roman. 

Several Greek prefixes are used as component parts of words. 

With respect to their uses, Prefixes are called inseparable 
or separable. 

An inseparable Prefix has no use save in composition. 
A separable Prefix can be used apart. 

In the word ' awake,' the first syllable a is an inseparable prefix. 
In the word * overflow,' * over ' is a separable prefix, which is used 
Apart in the sentence, ' The water fiowed over the bank.' 

The following English Prefixes are inseparable: — a, an, 
nn, be, for. 

The preposition * for,' in the sentence * He worked for me,' is distinct 
from the inseparable prefix ' for,' which has both a negative and an em- 
phatic force. 

In EngHsh, all the Roman Prefixes are inseparable, ex- 
cepting some special uses of contra, extra, per, and plus. 
When used as parts of the Latin language, the following 
Prefixes are treated as inseparable : — in, with a negative or 
privative meaning, as in the adjective incertv^ (= uncertain) ; 
amb (with its variations), and dis, ne, re, and se. 


Roman Prefixes are mostly, but not exclusively, used in 
composition with. Latin words and stems. [_See § 38.] 

A Prefix belonging to E.I. may in M.E. retain its first 
meaning, or may have a secondary use. Ex. : by ( — near) 
keeps its first meaning or use in the word ' by-stander,' but 
has a second meaning, implying reproach, in ' by- word.' 
Sometimes a Prefix — like i and y in some Old English forms- 
of participles — is inert, or void of meaning. 


a ( = Gothic us and E.I. a). The meaning has become 
vague, but seems in some words to be initiative, in others 
intensitive, and in ' a-rise ' the a apparently = ' up.' Ex. : 

* arise,' ' arouse,' ' awake.' 

a = E.I. and in the preposition andlang (= 'al6ng*), of 
which the E.II. forms include anlong and endlang. 

a = on. Ex. : ' aboard,' ' afield,' ' around,' ' ashore.' In 
the adverb ' anon ' the prefix is an (= on). [_8ee an.] 

a (= the P.P. prefix y or i) was used in words like ' adrad ' 
(= dreaded) in E.II., and is still employed in the words 
'ago ' and ' aware.' [See i and y.] 

In the word ' adown ' the prefix a = the E.I. preposition of, which = 
both 'of and 'from.' 'He gefeoU ofdune on )>a flor' = 'He fell down 
(or adown) on the floor.' Here dun = a hill, or any height, and of-dune 
= downwards. In * a-w6ary ' the prefix has an intensitive meaning, like 
that of an in the compound ' an-hungered.' [See an.] a ( = ' on ') is, like 
the article in M.E., changed to an before a vowel. 

after serves as a prefix in ' afternoon,' and in ' after- 

al in some words (for example, ' almighty ') = the adjective 

* all,' and supplies one part in an English compound of the 
first order ; but in other words the first part, al, is one of 
the various forms assumed by the Roman prefix ad (af, ag, 
al, etc.) 

For a peculiar use of ^ all to' in E.II. see to, an adverbial prefix, of 
which the meaning = a-sunder. The Latin dis, and the G-erman isier, are 
corresponding prefixes. 

an (= on). Ex. : anon (= ' in one,' or 'at once '), ane7it 
(a convenient old word = respecting). 

an (inseparable), in ' answer,' represents and in E.I., and 
has the meanings of ' back,' ' against,' and ' in reply.' 

In the E.II. compound ^ an-hungred' an is intensitive. [/See Matth. 


at, in many words, is a variation of the Latin prefix ad. But at is. 
an English prefix in the word ' atonement' = ' at-oon-ment ' = union. 

at is the prefix in the E.II. word ' at-oon ' ( = at one = in concord), 
which is often found in CHArcER, and occurs more than once in the ' Tale 
of Gamely n.' 

at served as a prefix in some proper names found in Old English, of 
which several have been more or less disguised by contraction. This has 
already been noticed with reference to the names * Atterbury ' and * Atten- 
biiry,' which are in meaning equivalent to ' at the borough.' It seems also 
clear that ' Twell ' = ' at the well,' and that ' Noakes ' is a plural form of 
' Noke,' a name disguising, by casting oiF the preposition and by contrac- 
tion, the original form 'atten oak' = at the oak. The initial n in Noke 
belongs to the definite article * J?en,' which represents the E.I. dative form 

be (inseparable) in * bespeak,' as in other examples, makes 
tlie verb more distinctly transitive. 

In * beside ' and ' besides ' he = at or 6y. In the words ' become ' and 
' belay ' the prefix gives new meanings to the verbs. It makes verbs of 
nouns in ' befriend ' and ' betroth,' and it has a privative meaning in the 
verb 'behead.' 

by (= * near ') implies inferiority and disrespect in ' by- 
word ' and ' byname,' but keeps its first meaning (near) in 
' by-stander.' 

e in ' enough ' is (like a in ' alike,' ' akin,' and ' among ') 
a vestige of the prefix ge in E.I. \_See the obsolete prefix y.} 

for (separable) = the prep. ' for ' in ' forsooth.' 

for (inseparable) has the negative force of ver (German) 
in ' forbid ' (= to bid not to do). It has an emphatic force in 
the old participle ' forlorn,' which means ' utterly lost.' 

fore (sometimes for) =' before ' and 'in front.' Ex.: 
' forebode,' ' foreland,' 'foreshore.' But we find the negative 
meaning of * for ' in the verb ' forego.' 

forth = 'f(5rw^ards' in 'forthcoming,' 'fdrthgoing.' 

fro (= 'from' or ' averse to') has, in three English words, 
tlie negative or deteriorative meaning of the German prefix 
ver. Ex.: 'frdward,' 'frowardly,' ' frdwardness.' 

In the Gothic New Testament of the fourth century, < fravaiirlits ' = 
"A-il, or that which is averse from good. (John ix. 41.) 

gain (= 'against,' or ' on the opposite site') keeps its Old 
l']nglish meaning in 'gainsay' (to controvert). 

i (a vestige of the verbal prefix ge in E.I.) is found in the 
obsolete adverb i-wis, or ywis (= 'truly'), which has been 
falsely supposed to be a verb preceded by a pronoun. 

iil='in.' Ex.: 'income,' 'inland,' 'inroad,' * instep.' In 
some words the E. in has been displaced by the Roman en or 
em, as in ' entwine ' and ' embdlden.' 


mis (E.I.) implies defect or error, as iu * mishap,' 'mis- 
take,' etc. 

mis is a prefix in E.I., and in meaning coincides with the Norman- 
French mes (Latin minus). 

ne is the oldest Teutonic particle of negation. 

*ne' (or, with elision, n') is the prefix in 'nay,' 'never,' and 'none.' 
{See § 12.] 

off (in form belonging to the E.I. preposition af ) has re- 
tained its first meaning in ' offset ' and ' offspring.' 

In ' the offside ' ' off' is in meaning equivalent to an adjective, and is 
the opposite of ' near.' 

on = ' npdn ' or ' forward,' as in ' onset ' and ' onslaught.' 

The prefix on is reduced to a in ' a-shore ' and ' a-fleld.' 

out has its first meaning in ' outbreak,' ' outcast,' ' outlaw,' 
* outroot,' etc. ; but implies extension in ' outspread ' and ' out- 

The notions of prevalence and excess are expressed in ' outnumber, 
' outwit,' ' outdo.' The notion of excess is also strongly expressed in the 
odd phrase ' to out-Herod H^rod,' where a proper noun is used as a verb, 

over keeps its first meaning in ' overcast,' ' overcloud,' 
' overseer.' Extension is expressed by 'overflow,' and 'over- 

The notion of prevalence or victory is found in * overawe,' ' overcome, 
' overreach,' ' overrule,' ' overrun ; ' but in the words ' overwise,' ' over- 
zealous,' we find the notion of excess. 

It should again be noticed that a form serving as a verb may be distin- 
guished by accent from the same form serving as a noun. Ex. : ' overflow ' 
(noun) ; ' overflow ' (verb). 

thorough (= 'through') keeps its first meaning in 
' thoroughbred,' ' thoroughfare,' and ' thorough-going.' 

to (obsolete) = the Latin dis and the Grerman zer in the words ' all to 
brake.' {See Bible. Judges ix. 53.] 

to = 'on this ' and ' on the ' in the adverbs ' to-day ' and 
' to-morrow ; ' but the same meaning does not appear in the 
adverb ' together.' 

•am, or umhe, like the Lat. amb, the E.I. ymb, and the Modern German 
um, = ' about ' or ' around,' and serves as a prefix in many E.II. words, 
■such as umgang (a circuit), and umset (P.P. = beset all round). 

un (inseparable) expresses a negation in the nouns ' un- 


certainty/ * unrest,' * untruth,' in the verbs ' unbind,' ' un- 
learn,' and in the adjectives ' unable,' ' unarmed.' 

In adjectives nn expresses privation or negation in many words : ' un- 
bearable,' ' unMifying,' * unfair,' ' untold,' * unwise.' In ' unanimity ' and 
' uniform ' un is a part of the Latin umis, which = ' one.' 

under (= 'under') keeps its first meaning in 'undercur- 
rent,' ' undermine,' ' undershot,' and has a secondary meaning 
in ' underhand,' ' understand,' and ' undertake.' 

up (= 'up') keeps its first meaning in 'upbear,' 'up- 
heave,' ' uplift ; ' but has a secondary meaning in ' upbraid,^ 
which means to ' reproach.' 

wan (= wanting), from the adjective wana, was used in E.II. as a 
prefix expressive of privation. Ex. : ' wanhope ' ( = want of hope = des- 

with (inseparable) = ' against,' and has an adversative 
force in ' withstand ; ' but has the meanings of ' back ' and 
' from ' in ' withdraw ' and ' withhold.' 

with (inseparable) differs only in use from the preposition ' with,^ 
which, in E.I., has sometimes the meaning of the prefix. 

v/ell (^ the adverb ' well ') keeps its first meaning in the 
noun ' welfare,' and in ' well-meant," ' well-bred,' and other 

' Welcome ' looks like a compound of ' well ' and ' come,' but represents 
the First English verb wilcumian, which = greet and treat kindly. 

y, an obsolete prefix (found as an archaism in Spenser's poetry), is a 
vestige of the verbal prefix ge, which in E.I. sometimes denoted verbs 
derived from nouns. In Old English y (i, or a), as a prefix of the perfect 
participle, is void of signification. 


In the list of Roman and Greek Prefixes the Prefixes are mostly Latin. 
The abbreviation Lat. ( = Latin) is used only here and there, to show the 
Latin form of a Prefix having variations. The abbreviation Gr. = Greek ; 
Fr. = French; Old Fr. = Old French. 

a, ab, abs (=' from,' ' away ') is the opposite of the prefix 

* ad,' as may be seen in ' avert ' (to ' turn from ') contrasted 
with ' advert ' (to ' turn to '). 

The use of ' ab ' is apparent in the examples 'absolve,' 'abdicate, 

* abhor,' but is disguised in ' avaunt ! ' which = the Old Fr. avant, from 
the Lat. ab ante. 

a = Fr. ^ in 'ag<$g '(Fr. a gogo)^ ' apace,' ' apart,' ' ap^rt ' 


'(of whicli ' pert ' is a shortened form), and ' avalanche ' (from 
a vol — Lat. ad vallem). 

a= Lat. e (= ex) in 'amend,' from the Lat. emendare. 

ad, in the words ' advance ' and ' advantage,' is a mistake 
of the Fr. a (from the Lat. ah) in the words ' avancer ' and 

* avantage,^ which come from the Lat. ah ante. 

ad (= 'to,' or 'toward') preserves its meaning, while it 
changes the d to c, f, g, 1, n, p, r, s, and t, in the verbs 

* accede,' 'affix,' 'aggravate,' 'allege,' 'annex,' 'appeal,' 'ar- 
raign,' 'assent,' and ' attract.' 

amb, am (= Lat. amhi^ E.I. ymb and E.II. 'wm&e=round 
about) is used without any change in the words ' ambiguity,' 
'ambition,' and 'ambulance,' but loses the b in 'amputate.' 

amphi (Gr. afx(bi = ' on both sides,' or ' round ') means. 
round in ' amphitheatre.' 

' Amphibious ' is an adjective used to describe some animals supposed 
to be capable of breathing and living in either water or air. 

an, or a (Gr. d, iiv) ■=■ destitute or deprived of, in ' an- 
archy,' from the Gr. apyj] = government. 

ana (Gr. d>'d = ' up,' ' through,' ' thorough '). ^x. : ' ana- 

apo (Gr. ctTTo = ' from,' etc.) JEx. : 'apostle ' = one sent 

ante (= ' before,' with regard to place, time, or order) 
keeps both its form and its meaning in ' antecedent ' and 
' antechamber.' 

By changing e to i this prefix becomes, in form, identical with the 
Greek prefix 'anti,' which means ' against,' as in the noun ' Antichrist.' 

anti (Gr. avri = 'against '). Ex. : 'antithesis.' 

bene = ' well ' in ' benediction,' ' benefit.' 

bi, or bis = ' twice ' or ' double.' Bx. : ' biennial,' ' bifur- 
cation,' 'biscuit.' 

cata (Gr. /caTd= 'down,' 'for,* 'against,' 'concerning'). 
Ex. : ' catastrophe,' ' catechism,' ' category,' ' catholic' 

circum (= ' around '). Ex. : ' circuit,' ' circumnavigation,' 

* circumscribe,' ' circumvent.' 

CIS (= ' on this side '). Ex. : ' cisalpine ' = on this side 
of the Alps. [See ultra.] 

con (= ciim = ' with ' or 'together '). Ex. : 'concentrate,' 
' conception,' ' concert,' ' conciliation,' ' connect.' 

The n is often changed into 1, m, or r, or is omitted. Ex. : ' collect,' 

* complex,' 'correspond,' 'co-eval,' • co-operation.' 


contra (=' against'). Ex. : 'contraband/ 'contradiction,' 

* contrast.' 

The modifications * contro ' and < counter ' appear in * controvert, 

* c6unterpoint,' ' counterpart,' and ' counterpoise.' In book-keeping, the 
■adverbial phrase per cdntra = on the other side. 

de (= ' from ' or ' forth '). Ex. : ' deduce,' ' deduct,' ' de- 
face,' ' deprive,' ' derive.' 

This de, serving to denote derivation, as well as the notion of priva- 
tion, is not always easily distinguishable from de, used in Old Fr., in 
stead of the Lat. dis, and denoting division, as in 'decompose' and 

* detach.' 

demi, Fr. (Gr. //'/it = ' half '). Ex.: 'demigod,' 'demi- 
«emiquaver.' The prefix ' semi ' is more frequently used. 
Ex. : ' semicircle,' ' semicolon.' 

dia (Ghr. ^la = 'through'). Ex. : 'diameter.' 
dis, di (= 'asunder') keeps its form and its first mean- 
ing in ' dissent,' ' dissolve,' ' distend,' ' distract.' It serves to 
•express privation and negation in ' disarm ' and ' displease.' 

The euphonic changes of dis to di and dif are seen in ' dilate,' ' diverge,' 

* differ,' ' diffuse,' ' difficulty.' The modification de is used in ' decom- 
pose,' ' defjr,' * deploy,' ' detach,' and the Old French form des remains 
in ' descant ' (a noun). 

ec, el (Gr. eK = Latin ex = ' out '). Ex. : ' ellipsis.' 
en, em, Fr. (= 'in'). Ex.: 'embark,' 'enclosure,' 'en- 
join,' ' enthrone,' 'entitle,' ' envelope.' 

The Latin in sometimes takes the place of the French en, as in * intitle ' 
and * inthr6ne.' 

enter (Fr. entre = ' between,' ' among ') serves as a substi- 
tute for the Latin ' inter ' in ' entertain ' and ' enterprise.' 

epi (Gr. kiri = ' upon '). Ex. : ' epitaph.' 

en (Gr. tl = ' well,' or ' agreeable '). Ex. : ' euphonic '= 
sounding well. 

ex (= ' out') retains its first meaning in 'exempt,' ' ex- 
patriate,' ' export,' ' ex-president,' etc. 

The notion of fulfilment or completion is expressed in other words, as 
in ' eff^t ' and ' elaborate,' while excess is denoted in * ex6rbitant.' 

The X is sometimes changed, for the sake of euphony, into ' f ' and • s,' 
as in ' efface,' ' effect,' ' escape,' ' escheat,' and ' essay ' (the verb), and x is 
omitted in ' elaborate,' ' Elegant,' ' elocution,' etc. Ec = ex in ' ecstatic' 

extra = 'beyond.' Ex. : * extradition,' 'extraordinary.' 

In the phrase * no extra charge made,' extra is used as an adjective. 

hemi (Gr. ijfAi = * half). Ex. : * hemisphere.' 


hyper {Gr. virip = ' over *). Ex. -. ' hyperbolical.' 
hypo (Gr. vtto =: 'under'). Ux. : 'hypothesis.' 
in (= ' in ' or ' into '), when prefixed to verbs, strengthens 
their meaning, especially w^ith respect to notions of transition 
and inclosure. Examples of the former use are supplied by 
'invade,' 'inject,' ' infatuate,' while the notion of inclosure is 
expressed in the words ' innate ' and ' incarceration.' 

Modifications of in are seen in ' illumine,' * impoverish,' ' irradiate.' 

in (= ' not,' or the English prefix un), when prefixed to 
nouns, adjectives, and adverbs, contradicts their meanings. 
Ex. : ' inglorious.' 

Besides the modifications 11, im, and ir, the contradictory in has the 
form ig, seen in ' ignorant ' and ' ignominy.' 

inter (= 'between,' or 'among'). Ex.: 'intercourse/ 
' interjection,' ' interlude,' ' international,' ' interpose.' 

In the noun ' intellect,' the prefix inter is changed by assimilation. 

intrd (Lat. adv. ; inter, intra, prep. = ' within '). Ex. : 
' introduce,' ' introspection,' ' introvert.' 

juxta (= 'near'). Ex.: 'juxtaposition.' 

male, mal (= 'ill,' 'bad'). Ex.: 'maladministration,' 
' malecontent ' (or ' malcontent '), ' malevolent.' 

meta {Gr. fxETu=:^ after,' but has other meanings, of which 
some imply change, or transition). Ex. : ' metamorphosis.' 

mis (Old Fr. mes, from the Lat. minus, in meaning = 
the First English mis). Ex. : ' misadventure,' ' mischance.' 

ne (= ' not '). Ex. : 'nefarious,' ' neutral.' 

non (= ' not '). Ex, : ' nonconformist,' ' non-entity,' ' non- 
essential,' * nonjuror,' ' nonpareil,' 'non-resident,' 'nonsense,* 
' nonsuit.' 

6b (— 'against,' 'towards,' and 'in the way') becomes, 
by assimilation, ' OC,' 'of,' 'or,' *op.' Ex.: 'obvious,' 'occur,' 
' ofiend,' ' oppose.' 

par, in the verb ' parboil,' is apparently equivalent to ' part.' 

para (Gr. irapa = ' beside,' but sometimes implies contra- 
diction). Ex. : ' paradox ' = an opinion opposed to commonly 
accepted notions. 

pen (Lat. paene, Fr. pen = ' almost '). Ex. : ' peninsula,' 
' penultimate.' 

per, par (= 'through ') denotes extension and completion 
in the words ' perfect,' ' permeate,' ' pervade.' 

In the adverb ' peradv^uture ' the prefix = ' by,' or ' by means of.' These 


meanings are not seen in the words 'pardon' and ' perjury.' In ' pellAcid * 
( = thoroughly clear) the final consonant of the prefix is changed, by 
assimilation to 1 in ' lucid ' ( = clear). . 

peri (6rr. Trepi = 'round about '). JEx. : ' perimeter.' 
plu (Lat. plus = 'more '). Ex. : 'pluperfect.' 
pre (Lat. prae = ' iu front of). Ex. : ' prevent.' 
preter (Lat. praeter = ' past, ' by-gone,' ' beyond '). Ex. : 

* preternatural,' ' preterpluperfect.' 

pro (= ' forth,' 'forward,' ' instead of). Ex. : ' proceed,' 

* proconsul,' ' progress,' ' protrude,' ' providence.' 

The French form ' pur ' appears in ' purchase,' * purport,' * purpose, 
and ' por ' occurs in ' portrait.' 

pro (like con) is used as a noun and as an adjective in the phrases 

* the pro's and the co7i's ; ' i. e. * the arguments pro and con.' 

p5st (= ' after '). Ex. : ' posthumous,* postpone,' ' post- 

re (= 'back' or 'again'). Ex.: 'reappoint,' 'recede,' 
'renew,' 'resist,' 'return.' 

In some -words re merely strengthens the meaning, as in ' rejoice.' 
Before a vowel d is added to re in ' redeem ' and ' redolent.' 

rear (Old Fr. arere and rere = ' backward,' 'behind'). 

Ex.: 'rear-admiral,' 'rear-guard,' 'rear-rank.' 

retro (= 'backward'). Ex.: 'retrograde,' 'retrospect.' 
se, sed (= ' apart '). Ex. : ' secede,' ' seclude,' ' sedition,' 

' select,' ' separate.' 

In * sedition ' a d is added to the particle. In * secure ' the particle se 
and the whole word have changed their first meaning : se-cura = ' apart 
from care.' ' Secure ' now means ' safe.' 

semi (=^ Gr. 37/ii = 'half'). Ex.: ' semicirque,' 'semi- 
quaver,' ' semitone.' [See demi.] 

sine (= ' without '). Ex. : ' sinecure.' 

sub (= 'under'). Ex.: 'subjugate,' 'submit,' 'sub- 

The notion of inferiority in rank is expressed in 'subaltern,' 'sub- 
ordinate,' ' sub-prior,' and that of diminution is implied in ' subtract.' The 
modifications of this prefix are caused by assimilation before c, f, g, m, p, 
and r. Ex.: 'succumb,' ' suffix,' 'suggest,' 'summons,' 'support,' 'surro- 
gate,' ' suspension.' 

subter (= 'under'). Ex.: 'subterfuge,' 'subterranean.* 
super (= 'above' or 'over'). Ex.: 'superfluous,* 'su- 
perintendent,' ' supernatural.' 

The Fr. form sur appears in ' surface,' • s^plice,' ' surprise.* 
• N • 


supra ( = * above ') is used in the noun ' supralapsarians ' and in the ad- 
jective * supramundane.' The noun is the name of a sect. 

syi, sym, syn {Gr. avv and Ivv z=^ together with '). Ex. : 

* syllable,' * sympatliy,' ' syntax,' ' synthesis.' 

* Syntax ' = that part of G-rammar which treats of words, phrases, and 
sentences, as placed together with other words, phrases, and sentences. 

trans (= ' across '). Bx. : ' transcribe,' ' transient,' * transi- 
tion,' ' translation.' 

The modification ' tra ' is found in ' traduce,' and the Fr. form * tres ' 
appears in ' trespass.' 

ultra (= ' beyond '). Ex. : ' nltra-liberal,' ' ultramarine ' 
(a blue pigment), ' ultramontane ' (= beyond the Alps), ' ultra- 
mundane ' (= beyond the visible world). 

In the first of the examples given the meaning of the prefix = extreme. 
The word ' ultramontane ' has reference to Eome, and in controversy is used 
to denote the whole system of ecclesiastical government of which Eome is 
the centre 

vice (Lat. vice = * instead of'). Ex.: ' vice-admiral^* 

* vice-president,' *vice-roy.' 

vis (Old Fr. = the Lat. vice). Ex. : ' viscount.' 

Of the rules prescribed for Divisions of Syllables, in writing and print- 
ing, the most important are those founded on a correct knowledge of Sufl&xes 
and Prefixes. [See §§ 40 and 42.] 


First English and Latin are the two main sources of 
words in Modern English. To the first belong many concrete 
or realistic words ; to the second many words having abstract 
or general meanings. 

The word English has two meanings. It serves, first, as a name for 
the Teutonic tongue more strictly called First English and often called 
Anglo-Saxon ; secondly, as a name for the composite tongue of which First 
English and I.atin are the two chief sources. The context will here pre- 
vent confusion of the two meanings. 

To First English belong the oldest forms of numerous 
nouns serving as names of appearances, sounds, and transitions 
in the external world collectively called Nature, such names 
as ' earth,' ' heaven,' ' sun,' ' day,' 'moon,' ' stars,' 'fire,' 'light,' 
'sunrise,' 'sunset,' 'twilight,' 'night,' 'water,' 'springs,' 

* wells,' 'waterfalls,' Mand,' 'sea,' 'thunder,' 'lightning,' 
*wind,' 'storm,' 'rain,' 'hail," snow.' 

Many names of plants and trees and of their several 


parts: — 'ash,' 'birch,' 'bloom,' 'blossom,' 'root,' * stem,* 
'stalk,' 'leaf,' *tw%,' 'sprig,' 'spray,' 'rind,' 'bark,' 'hay/ 
'straw,' 'chaff.' 

Some names of wild and tame quadrupeds : — ' horse,' 
' hound,' ' cow,' ' sheep,' 'swine,' * boar,' 'wolf,' 'fox,' ' hare,' 
' deer,' ' marten.' 

Some names of birds, fishes, reptiles, and insects : — 'hawk,* 
' raven,' ' crow,' ' starling,' ' bittern,' ' crane,' ' owl,' ' sparrow,' 
' lark,' and ' nightingale ; ' ' fish,' ' whale,' ' worm,' ' snake,' 
' fly,' ' bee,' ' grasshopper.' 

Names for parts of the human body : — ' head,' * eye,' 
' brow,' ' ear,' ' month,' ' nose,' ' hand,' ' foot,' etc. 

Many verbs serving to express physical acts: — 'run,' 

* leap,' ' come,' * go,' ' take,' ' make,' * break,' ' work,' ' creep,' 
' smite,' ' grasp,' ' gather,' etc. [See * 20, § 21.] 

Many adjectives denoting natural qualities: — 'hard,' 

* healthy' (or 'hale'), * swift,' ' fair,' 'dreary,' 'stony,' 'good,' 
*bad,' 'green,' 'white,' 'blue,' 'yellow,' 'growing,' 'blooming.' 

Many names of buildings and their furniture : — ' house,' 

* bam,' ' beam,' ' gable,' ' roof,' ' door,' ' stool,' ' bench,' ' bed,' 
' loom,' ' board,' ' dish,' etc. 

Names of agricultural implements, etc. : — ' plough,' ' har- 
row,' ' share,' ' sickle,' ' gear,' ' wain,' ' wheel,' ' spoke.' 

Some names belonging to navigation : — ' keel,' ' boat,' 
' stem,' ' stem,' ' rudder,' * oar,' ' sail,' and ' sound,' 

Household names : — * father,' ' mother,' ' husband,' ' wife,' 

* brother,' ' sister,' ' friend,' ' gossip,' ' neighbour,' ' godfather,' 
' godmother,' ' kinsman,' ' kindred.' 

Adjectives denoting moral qualities : — ' good,' ' bad,' 
bright,' 'wrong,' 'holy' ( = morally 'healthful'), 'kind,' 
' true,' ' mild,' ' steadfast.' 

Some of the chief topics of discourse may be placed in the following 
order : — 

1. Nature 

2. Physicallife 

3. Domestic life 

4. "Warfare 

5. Grovernment 

6. Morality 

7. Religion 

8. The Church 

9. Art, Poetry 
10. Philosophy 

By means of this order the topics to which First English words mostly 
belong may be readily shown. They are abundant in the departments 
indicated by the numbers 1,2, 3, and 4, and they are less numerous in the 
departments denoted by the numbers 5 and 6. To the sections of which 
the numbers are 7, 8, 9, and 10 a comparatively scanty vocabulary belongs. 

First English Stems are partly known by their forms, and 
by their connexion with English Suffixes and Prefixes, in 
derivative and in compound words. [/See §§ 28, 30, and 37 ] 

# n2 • 



In some words Englisli SuflBjxes and Prefixes are attached to 
Latin Stems, and in other words Latin Suffixes and Prefixes 
are connected with English Stems. Such words are called 
hybrids. Several hybrid words are well established in Modern 
English. A few examples are appended. In each word the 
English part is printed in Italic. 

Ex. : ' avt-fulj' ' &e-cause,' ' chast-e7^,' ' dnke-dom,^ ' over- 
rate,' ^vLse-less,' ' dis-&eZie/,' ^ meein' while,* ^re-taJce,* '' under- 

In each of these words the part not printed in Italic belongs to Latin. 

With few exceptions, words belonging, as parts of speech, 
to the following classes and subdivisions have stems of which 
the original forms are First English : — 

Pronouns of all the six classes. [See §§9, 18.] 

Particles ; i.e. adverbs, prepositions, and conjunctions. 
\_8ee §§ 12, 13, 14.] 

Nouns changing vowels in the plural, \_8ee §§ 16, 17.] 

Numeral adjectives and adjectives having irregular forms 
of comparison. [See §§ 10, 19.] 

AH the verbs placed in the seven classes of old verbs. 
[See * 20.] 

Many contracted or otherwise irregular verbs of the ISTew 
Conjugation. Ex.: 'feed,' 'lend,' 'make,' 'say,' 'seek,' 'sell.' 
[/See* 20.] 

All the anomalous verbs: — 'be,' 'can,' 'do,' 'go,' etc. 
[See * 20.] 

Many verbs that have been transferred from the Old 
Conjugation to the New. Ex. : ' bake,' ' bequeath,' ' climb,' 
'heave,' 'help,' 'laugh,' 'shave,' 'sleep,' 'weep.' [See *20.] 

The preceding analysis makes it clear that if a student wishes to write 
English so that his words may be mostly Teutonic, he has little more to 
do than to take care about nouns, adjectives, and verbs ; for the other 
words must be mainly Teutonic. Of course he will generally reject long 
words. Of all our monosyllables a very large majority belongs to First 
English ; but a considerable number of exceptions may be noticed. The 
following short words are of Eoman origin : — 






























































bro^or, brother 
dohtor, daughter 
fader, father 
frednd, friend 
mann, man 
mo^or, mother 

Of First Englisli words many may be called comparatively 
firm, with respect to both their forms and their meanings. 
To the class of firm words belong many concrete nouns, or 
names of general and constant use ; adjectives of number, and 
others denoting such qualities and differences as are continu- 
ally noticed ; verbs telling of acts perpetually repeated. The 
permanence of thoughts pervading innumerable alterations of 
forms is expressed in these firm or permanent words — nouns, 
adjectives, and verbs — of which a few examples are here 

Adjectives, Verbs. 

eald, old finde, find 

god, good gite, get 

heard, hard habbe, have 

riht, right healde, hold 

seofon, seven leose, lose 

Strang, strdng tace, take 

Of the words not obsolete many have suffered alterations 
of form or of meaning, sometimes of both ; or as parts of 
speech they have been transferred from one class into another. 

In the appended examples the abbreviations used for names of parts of 
speech are set iii curves, and modern forms are set in Italic. Suf. = suffix. 


* to boot ' (adv.) 
cheap (adj.) 
quell (v.) 
he-queath (v.) 
deem (v.) 
fangs (n.) 
' as lieve' (adv.) 
main-vaast (adj.) 
'in shd plight' (n.) 
like-mse (suf.) 

Of all the changes made in the meanings and uses of old 
words one of the most prevalent is a gradual diminution. 
The first meanings of their oldest forms are not expressed now 
by the nouns ' churl ' and ' qualm.' The verbs ' fare,' ' fear,' 
' harrow,' and * starve ' have not the meanings of their oldest 
forms. On the contrary, some words extend and refine their 
uses, as may be seen in the example * win.' 

Various alterations of m£anings are shown in the following examjples:-^ 

E.I. M.E. 



bot (n.) 


ceap (n.) 

a bai^ain 

cwelle (v.) 


cwe^e (v.) 


deme (v.) 


fange (v.) 


leaf (n.) 


magen (n.) 


plihte (v.) 


wise (n.) 


ceorl, a peasant 
cwealm, death 
fare (v.), go 

churl, a niggard 

q%calm, nausea 

fare (with extended uses) 


E.I. M.E. 

faere (v.), frighten 
hergian (v.), lay waste 
steorfe (v.), die 
winne (v.), fight 
witan (v.), know 

fear (v., intrans.) 
harrow (v.), distress 
starve (v.), die of hunger 
win (v.), gain 
Ho wif (adv.) 

E.II., in tlie course of the time thirteenth century — four- 
teenth century, cast off more and more of such inflexions as 
belonged to the tongue written, in the tenth century, by 
^LFKic. He (it can hardly be doubted) wrote, like other 
churchmen who in his time studied Latin, so as to make the 
utmost possible use of First English inflexions. To some 
extent a similar result of reading Latin is evident in the 
constructions employed in some parts of Wycliffe's Bible. 
On the other hand, popular English, in the time of ^lfric, 
might, in all probability, include many words not employed 
by that writer, and might have some free constructions in 
which the inflexions seen in his writings were more or less 
neglected. After the Conquest the same process of casting 
ofi' inflexions would naturally go on more and more rapidly, 
when English vs^as left to the care of the people, though it 
does not follow that this movement would make progress 
alike in all places. The general result, however, was this : 
that E.II. was made to differ widely from E.I. It has there- 
fore seemed expedient to give to the tongue written by 
-^LFRic a distinct name. Accordingly, ' Anglo-Saxon,' as 
a term synonymous with First or Oldest English, is now a 
name established by the authority of learned writers, includ- 
ing a majority of those whose names are here appended. 

English Writers on the History of E.I. : Barnes, Latham, Marsh, 
MoRLEY, Skeat ( ' Anglo-Saxon Gospels '), German Writers : G-rimm, 
Koch. English Writer of E.I. Lexicon : Bos worth. German Writers : 
Ettmtjller, Grein. English Writers on E.I. Grammar : Latham, Sweet, 
Thorpe. German Writers : Koch, Matzneb. 

The two cotemporaneous processes by which E.II., of the 
time twelfth century — fourteenth century, was made to differ 
more and more from E.I. were these : — a gradual disuse of 
inflexions and an increasing use of words borrowed from Old 
French, otherwise called Norman-French, a tongue consist- 
ing mostly of common or popular Latin, mixed with many 
Teutonic and a few Keltic words. Students who would learn 
more respecting the sources of that language will find aids in 
the works to which references will be appended. In England, 
during the twelfth century, Old French was the language of 


poetical literatnre, though one English romance — Latamon's 
story called * Brut ' — may belong to that time, Latin was 
the written language of studious churchmen and schoolmen. 
Meanwhile E.II., spoken (and to some extent written) with 
increasing neglect of inflexions, was the language of the 

The course of transition from E.I. to E.II. forms is made apparent by 
comparing with older versions two versions of Gospels known by the names 
* Eoyal ' and ' Hatton ' — both made in the twelfth century, and lately edited 
by Skeat. To the same time belong two series of homilies — the ' Lam- 
beth ' and the ' Trinity College Homilies ' — both edited by Mobbis. 


Latin is a name employed with a twofold meaning — first, 
to denote the highly- cultivated language written by Ciceeo 
and by Virgil ; secondly, to denote the earlier and later rude 
or popular tongue, sometimes more distinctly called ' rustic 
Latin.' The former — closely limited with respect to both 
time and space — was soon debased, and afterwards was more 
or less imperfeotly represented by mediaeval Latin writers. 
Some altered, expanded, and refined meanings of Latin words 
may be ascribed to several mediaeval writers on ecclesiastical 
questions. Old French has its two chief sources in common 
or ' rustic ' Latin and in Old German. In the course of the 
Middle Ages, the popular Latin that for a long time had been 
prevalent in Gaul, mixed its own forms with stems borrowed 
from Teutonic tongues spoken by hordes of barbarians — 
Goths, Longobards, and Franks. Of this mixture examples 
are still seen in words classed as belonging to Low or Me- 
diaeval Latin. Such words are found in the languages called 
French, Italian, and Spanish — all three alike in one respect : 
their predominant constituents are Latin. The Roman tongue 
thus represented, during the Middle Ages, such power as 
had formerly belonged to the Roman empire itself. As Old 
French was a mixture of some Teutonic with numerous Latin 
stems, the Normans brought over with them many words of 
Roman origin and others having Teutonic stems, which already 
existed in First English. For example, the Norman — put- 
ting an initial gu instead of an EngHsh w — said 'guile' 
where the Englishman said * wile,' just as we may now say 
' guard ' instead of ' ward.' 

Among English words of Roman origin the more altered 
forms have come for the most mrt through a French medium. 



and the forms less altered have been directly borrowed from 
Latin. Thus we have from the Latin ^ domitare ' the Old 
French' verb ' danter,' and from this comes the verb * daunt ; ' 
but from the Latin ^f actio ' our word ^faction ' is directly 
borrowed. From the same Latin word ^f actio ' we have the 
Old French word ^facJion,^ and from this comes our word 
^fashion.' Of some words borrowed from French the sources 
are found in no classical Latin dictionary. Thus from the 
Low Latin noun ' regalimen ' (a kingdom) we have the Old 
French word ' realme,^ and from this come the Old English 
word ' reame ' and the modern form * realm.'' Various other 
alterations of form are seen in the appended list of nouns, 
adjectives, and verbs borrowed from Old French. 

Latin words are set within curves. The abbreviation L.L. serves to 'point 
out a word found in Low or Mediceval Latin. 

anguisse (angustia), anguish 

anoier (nocere), annoy 

apert (apertus), ;pert 

avaler (ad rallem), vail 

avantage (ab + ante), advantage 

cabas (caput), cabbage 

cas (casus), case 

casse (capsa), cash 

caitif (captivus), caitiff 

chalenger (calumniare), challenge 

chatel (capitale), chattels 

chef (caput), chief 

col (quietus), coy 

cmnpanie (L.L. companium), com- 

danter (domitare), daunt 
defier (fides^ defy 
empeirer (pejor), imjpair 
eschele (scala), scale 
escluse (L.L. exclusa), sluice 
escuier (scutarius), esquire 
estable (stabilis), stable 
estorer (instaurare), store 
fait (factum), /ea^ 

Among our earlier words of French and Latin origin 
many, belonging to English of the thirteenth century, are 
found in writings treating of religion and of ecclesiastical 
affairs. The advantages afforded by these words may be esti- 
mated by comparing with older homilies a long and methodical 
sermon called * The Persones Tale,' which, on the authority of 
certain manuscripts, has been ascribed to Chaucer. 

falte {ialleTQ), fault 

faye (fata), 'faerie ' 

gaiole (L.L. gabiola), gaol (jail) 

gaufre (L.L. gaufrum), wafer 

glorios (gloriosus), glorious 

jogler QoculsLTi), juggle 

jornee Idinvnus), Journey 

langue (lingua), language 

maule (malleus), maul 

morine (mori), murrain 

paier (pacare), ^ay 

pais (pax), ^eace 

paroisse (L.L. parochia), parish 

plaissier (plexus), plash 

pousser (pulsare), push 

pris (pretium), price 

quiter (quies), quit 

rais (radius), ray 

scandele (scandalum), scandal 

seure (sequi), sue 

temptier (tentare), tempt 

voclier (vocare), vou^h 

void (viduus), void 



Old English Words borrowed from Old French. 













































































The two lists appended may show the variety gained by the 
introduction of numerous words borrowed from Old French. 

Old EngUsh Words borrowed from Old French. 





































a.^evt (open) 















































em Forms 

of Words b 


m Old Fre 


























































































English writings of the thirteenth and fonrteenth centuries 
show that, during that time, the two languages, English and 
Old French, became more and more closely united, or grew 
together, so as to make out of two languages one tongue, a 
language still commonly and correctly called * English ' for 
two reasons : the best or most useful words had mostly their 
sources in First English, and the grammar of the composite 
tongue still remained thoroughly English. The word ' com- 
posite ' — often employed in speaking of our modern tongue — 
is hardly adequate to denote the intimate blending of Teutonic 
with Roman elements that took place in the course of the 
thirteenth and fourteenth centuries. The result was a union 
of strength and harmony ; a union of many short, clear, and 
strong words, with numerous and melodious variations of ex- 
pression for all such changes as may be required in the tone 
or meaning of a speaker. Such a union of Teutonic and 
Roman elements exists in no other language. 

For English readers aids for the f Jaidy of Old French are not numeroua. 
The following references ■will be useful : — Heaene's edition of ' Kobert 
of Gloucester ; ' Morris (' Historical Outlines of English Accidence,' Ap- 
pendix III.); Morris and Skeat (* Glossarial Index to Specimens of Early- 
English '). Eeaders of German will find aids in the writings of Diez (on 
the ' Eomance Dialects ') and Matzner (' Franzosische Grammatik ' and 
' Alt-Eranzosische Lieder '). 


A course of varied readings in Old English literature' — 
including, of course, specimens of the Northern English 
writings called ' Scottish ' — will show that the sources of 
words belonging to Old English are not all found in First 
English and Old French. Of the Teutonic words not found 
in the literature of First English some are with good reason 
ascribed to the Old Northern or Scandinavian tongue, spoken 
by the rude invaders called ' Northmen,' or ' Danes.' Theirs 
was a Teutonic tongue which, while it was closely related to 
the Oldest English, had peculiar forms, such as are still pre- 
served ill the oldest literature of Iceland. 

Some doubts must attend researches in this part of etymology. First 
English literature — consisting partly of sacred poetry and of other writings 
devoted mostly to the service of religion — could not represent the whole 
living vocabulary of the people. The fact remains, however, that in Eng- 
lish, and especially in ' Scottish,' writings of the olden time, some words, of 
which sources are found neither in Eirst English nor in Old French, have 
forms closely resembling some still preserved in the tongue called Icelandic 
or Old Northern. The words themselves belong mostly to the vocabulary 



of rude physical life, and to its attendant warfare. Several local names 
remaining in districts where the words called * Old Northern ' have 
been mostly preserved ; the whole history of the cruel aggressions called 
' Danish ; ' traditions of which vestiges, formerly associated with terror, 
sire still remaining in northern and in midland districts — these are parts of 
the evidence adduced to show that some of our words belong to a tongue 
spoken by the rudest of all the Teutonic tribes who invaded the island now 
called Great Britain. Their incursions and devastations, continued during 
the ninth and tenth centuries, spread terror all along the east coast of 
England, as among the G-aelic people of Scotland, from whose language the 
Old Northern seems to have borrowed several words ; for example, the 
word ^ gjalti^ (= a coward). The following examples have been classed 
with words borrowed from the Old Northern tongue. Words here set with 
quotation points are found in extant dialects, or in Old English. To the 
latter the number 2. is a reference. "Words followed by the letter N. belong 
to the N. of England, or to Scotland. The following are all found iu 
' Scottish ' literature : — ' boun,' ' busk,' ' canty,' * fey,' ' gain ' ( = near, etc.)y 
' gar,' 'raik,' 'slee,' *sturt,' 'tint' (= lost), and 'toomit' (= emptied). 

Old Northern and English Words. 

and-riki, drake 
banga (strike), banff 
bara (wave), ' bore ' of 

a tidal river 
barkr (barge), barque 
beita(set on dogs), bait 
bikar (cup), beaker 
bdndi (resident pea- 
sant), * bondemeti,' 2. 
boun (ready), p.p. ofbua 
briosk (gristle), brisket 
bua (make ready), 

' boun,' p.p., N. 
buask (get ready), 

' busk; N. 
bulki, bulk 
bylgia, billow 
daggardr, dagger 
daska (strike), dash 
deyja (perish), die 
doggr, dog 
dwelja (abide), dwell 
fana ('play the fool'), 

'/owcZ' (silly), N. 
feigr (a., ' near death '), 

'fei/; N. 
felagi (shareholder), 

tjall (mountain), 'fill; 


fleygja (piit to flight), 
'fla^; or frighten, N. 

gauta (play), * cantg ' 
(playful), N. 

gata (way), 'gait; N. 

gegna (meet), * gain ' 
(near, etc.), N. 

gil (ravine), ' ghyli; N. 

giska, guess 

glupna (look down- 
cast), 'glo'pnid ' (2., 
amazed), N. 

gora (make), 'gar; N. 

gromr, groom 

gustr (storm), gust 

hitta, hit 

hnefi (fist), ' neif; 
' nieve; N. 

hrifa (snatch), rive 

hrokr, rogue 

kasta, cast 

kinda ('bete a fire'), 

kroppa (cut short), 

krii (a crowd), crew 

kuta (pierce), cut 

leggr, leg 

lypta, lift 

mati (associate), mate 

oddi (unequaD, odd 

ransaka (fight for plun- 
der), ransack 
reka (roam), * raik; N. 
seigr (sure), 'sicker; N. 
skalldr (poet), scald 
skilja (understand, v.), 

skill, n. 
skuflfa (mock), scoff 
sky (cloud), sky 
slaegr (sly), ' slee; N. 
snakr (boat), smax;k 
sokum = ' for the sake 

stedja (to fix), bestead 
steggr (male animal)^, 

styrdr (hard), sturdy 
styrr (battle), ' stour ' 
styrt (strife), ' sturt; 

2. N. 
jjrifask (prosper), thriv& 
Crista, thrust 
tjorn (lake), ' tarn; N. 
torn (emptiness), ' too- 

mit ' (emptied), N. 
ttilka (interpret), talk 
t^na (lose), ' tint' (lost), 

windauga, window 
wiskr (cunning), wizard 


For further information on -words ascribed to the Old Northern tongue 
students may refer to lexicons and glossaries compiled by the ■writers 
whose names are here given : — Cleasby (Icelandic) ; Ihee (Old Swedish) ; 
Mtjreay (Scottish). 


The student wlio to some knowledge of the Teutonic lan- 
guages, First English and Old Northern, adds a considerable 
acquaintance with Old French, will be able to trace back to 
their sources a large number of the words seen in Old Eng- 
lish ; but he will still find here and there forms of which he 
<jannot guess the sources. Of these words several may, with 
great probability, be ascribed to the Cymraeg or ' Welsh ' 
tongue. But much caution is required in this part of ety- 
mology, for in many instances false conclusions may follow 
hasty observations of likenesses, when these are not well 
tested by references to history. 

The Cymraeg word ' pert ' is, in form and meaning, like ' pert ' in 
Modern English. But it is clear that, in Old English, the words ' aperte,' 
' perte,' ' pertiliche,' and others belonging to the same stem, were borrowed 
from the Old French ' apert,' of -which the source is seen in the Latin 
* a-pert-us ' (open, or made manifest). The quotations appended show the 
first meaning of the word, and it will be noticed that the secondary meaning 
(' rather bold ') naturally follows the first — ' open,' in speech, or in manner. 

' ... to serue treu>e euere. 
pat is J?e perte profession* pat a-pendeb to knihtes,' — Langland. 

Translation : — ' To serve truth ever — that is the manifest profession 
[or duty] that belongs to knights.' 

' Lok, who that is most vertuous alway, 
Priv6 and pert, and most entendith ay 
To do the gentil dedes that he can — 
Tak ' [thou] ' him for the grettest gentil man.' — Chattcek. 

♦. . . Appear, and pertly!' — The Tempest, Act iv. Sc. i. — Shakespeare. 

Here 'pertly' seems to mean 'clearly' (not 'briskly'); for it is not 
likely that the poet would address to ' Ceres ' and ' Juno ' a command 
equivalent to that implied in the old interjection ' yare ! ' 

' In a body, when the blood is fresh, the spirits pure and vigorous — not 
only to vital but to rational faculties, and those in the acutest and the 
pert-est operations of wit and subtlety — it argues in -what good plight and 
constitution the body is,' etc. — ^Milton. 

The examples given suffice to show that in etymology references to 
history are the means of finding safe guidance. 

"Words given in pairs, in the list appended, serve here merely as ex- 
amples of likeness. It is not asserted either that the word set as the 
second comes from the first, or that the first comes from the second. "Words 
made prominent are called 'Cymraeg,' because that is their true name. 



The name * Welsh,' in its first meaning, was not intended to serve as a marlc 
of respect. In pronunciation, c = k ; dd = th in the pronoun ' thine ; ' 
th =« th in the adjective 'thin;' w short = o in 'who;' w long = o in 
* move ; ' f = V, but ff — the English f ; the sound of the aspirated 11 cannot 
be defined by writing. 

In the abbreviations here used, the figures 1. and 2. resjpectively follovr 
words found in E.I. or in E.II. ; the letter ^.follows words belonging mostly 
to North Britain, and a few words heard in dialects are set with qtiotaiioii 
points. Where some distinction of meaning is noticed, it is shown by words 
set within curves. 

Oymraeg and English Words. 

coblin, goblin 
cogl, cudgel 
cop (top), cop^, I., cop- 
costio (coster, O.F.), to 

craig (stone), crag 
crimpio (to shape in 

ridges), to crimp 
crochan (pot), croc, I. 
crwg, crook 
cwrian, to cower 
cwysed, a gusset 
cylyn, a kiln 
cynell, a kennel 
darn, a darn 
dinas (a city), denizen 
dirgel (secret), digol, 1. 
dryg-edd (malice), dry, 

1. (sorcery) 
dwn (dusky), dun 
ffel (sly), /«^/ (cruel) 
ffladru (to fondle), to 

fSLaim (lancet), fleam 
ffordd (a way), forb, 2. 
SriM (aiovest), 'frith,' 

ffynel (air-hole), funnel 
ffysgio (to drive off), 

fysan, 1. 

gefyn (a fetter), gyves 
glyn (deep dale), glen, 

grual, grvd 

Afon (a river), Avon 

basged, basket 

bel (war), bealu, 1., 

bale, 2. 
bicra (to fight), bicker 
best, n., to boast, n. 
botas, a boot 
botwm, a button 
bragal (to vociferate), 

to brag 
brat (clout), ' brat ' 

bre(hill), '6me,'N. 
bryn (hill), 'brent,' 2. 

bwth (hut), booth 
caban (booth), cabin 
cam (crooked), gambrel 
earn (a heap) = cairn, 

chwidog (a sorcerer), 

cwidol-yiiS, 1, (a sor- 
chwiff, whiff 
chwip, qui'p 
chwired, quirk 
chwyrn ( a whirl), 

cwyrn, 1. 'quern ' 
cleca (to gossip), to 

clepio (to prate), clepe, 

2. (caU) 
clog (large stone), clog 
clwt (a patch), clout 
cnap, knob 

The connexion of Old English yfith. the Cymraeg or Welsh tongue is 
the least explored part of English Etymology. The following refer- 
ences may be given: — Dieffenbach ('Celtica'); Garnett ('Philological 
B»ays'); Spureeix (' Welsh-English^ictionary ') ; Stephens ('Literature 

grugiar, grouse 

gwald, welt 

gwn, gown 

hap (luck), hap 

hofio, to hover 

hyrddu (to push), to- 

llais (a sound), lay 

Uawnt (smooth hill), 

Uercio, to lurk 

Hug (partly), luke- 

masg (net- work), inesk 

mocio, to mock 

od (notable), odd 

pawen, a, paw 

pranc, a. prank 

pwtio (to push), to put 

rhasg (a slice), rasher 

rhenc (a row), rank 

sad (staid), sad, 2, 

tabar, a tabart, 2. 

tre (a town), Daven- 

truan (a,, outcast), tru- 

twtiaw (to make neat), 
tidy, a. 

wyneb (a face), nebb, 1. 

wysg (a stream), tiie 

ysnoden (a fillet), a 
' snood,' N. 



•oftheKymry'); Williams ('Lexicon Comu-Britaunicum'' 
matica Celtica '). 


Zetjss (* Gram- 

Old English contains, besides its store of First Eng- 
iisli words, others borrowed from the languages Old French, 
Old Northern, and Cymraeg. Variations gradually made in 
the forms and the meanings of words — especially in the 
fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, and partly during modern 
times — are too numerous to be classified in a handbook. 

Of all the alterations referred to, one of the most frequent is a gradual 
diminution (and often degradation) made in the meanings of certain words 
— for example, in such words as ' angre,' ' schroude,' ' smacky,' and ' triacle,' 
The last (made by contracting a Greek word and adding a suffix) was once 
the name of a sovereign antidote against poison, and, without any loss of 
dignity, the word ' triacle ' might serve then to make clear some point in a 
moral or a religious discourse. On the contrary, of some words the first 
meanings were extended, and in some instances were refined, as may be 
noticed in the adjective 'hende' (courteous), of which the first meaning 
was that belonging to the modern form ' handy.' A very significant series 
of alterations belongs to the word of which one old form is ' sely.' In 
High German the first meaning of the corresponding word has been ex- 
tended and refined. The adjective selig may be applied to one who is 
happy in his departure from this life. But in English the word has passed 
through these changes of meaning: — 1st, lucky; 2nd, innocent, or good; 
3rd, ' silly,' and consequently ' miserable.' In some instances words have 
been, for a long time, overlooked in literature — the verb ' slink,' for ex- 
ample. It is hard to draw the line between the living vocabulary and 
words that may be fairly called obsolete. Some considerable knowledge of 
dialects is assumed when it is said that certain words are altogether 
obsolete. Several of those words otherwise forgotten (like 'dight' = 
arrayed) have found places of refuge in poetry. Others may without 
regret be left to die ; for the loss of such polemic words as ' >repe ' (scold) 
and ' sace ' (fight) leaves no want of ample variety in modern synonyms. 
But for such forgotten words as ' an^nt ' (respecting) and ' fremme ' (to act 
well for a given end) our modern tongue has no good and ready substitutes. 
In meaning, the last-named word is well represented by the verb * frame,' 
often used in the dialect of the "West Eiding. A few examples of Old 
English words, now altered in meaning, or called ' obsolete,' or living only 
in dialects, are given in the list appended. 

M. indicates a Midland dialect. The letter 'N. follows words still extant in 
Northern dialects. The older meanings are set within curves. 

schroude (any garment) ; scrud, 1. 
smacky (to taste, or perceive); 

smcsccan, 1. 
thewes (virtues) ; thedwas, pi., 1. 
thole (endure) ; polian, 1., N. 
wither- win (adversary) ; wider 

(against) ; winnan (fight), 1. 

angre (any vexation) ; ange, 1. 
joist (to supply harbourage, etc., for 

cattle) ; O.F. gister, M. 
layke (play); lac, 1. (a game\N. 
roune (to speak secretly); run, 1. 

(a mystery) 
sacc-les (inoffensive) ; sacan, 1. (to 

fight), N. 




Britain, partly or mostly inhabited by tbe Cymraeg 
people, while it was governed by a Roman army, was after- 
wards invaded by the English and their neighbours, and in 
later days was here and there ' ransacked ' by northern hordes, 
who from time to time during the ninth and tenth centuries 
spread devastation in several parts of the island. In the 
eleventh century they were victorious, and their invasions, 
which partly left their impress in names of places, came to an 
end after the Norman Conquest. The sources of Old English 
are to some extent indicated in the names of places, and 
among local names in England the words most numerous 
have their sources in First English. 

Of the abbreviations here used, 1^. follows names of places in the North, 
and E. names of places in the Eastern Counties, etc. C. = Cymraeg ; G. = 
Gaelic ; and R. = Boman. 

Old Words in Local Names. 

"beck (a stream), Trout- 
beck, N. 

bourne (a stream), Ash- 

brig (a bridge), Brig- 

burgh (a town), Edin- 

by (a town), Whitby, 
N. and E. 

caster (a camp), Lan- 
caster, R. 

cheap {ceap, a market), 

Chester (a camp), Col- 
chester, R. 

coin (a colony), Lin- 
coln, R. 

combe (a hollow), II- 
fracombe, C. 

cotes (huts), Fencotcs 

cove (a hollow), Mal- 
ham Cove 

craig (a rock). Craven 

croft (an inclosure), 
Seacroft, N. 

dal (a dale), Kendal, N. 

den (a hollow), Haw- 

down (a hill), Lans- 

ea (water), Winchelsea 
fell (a hill). Cam Fell, 

fold (an inclosure), Stod 

Fold, N. 
folk (people), Norfolk 
force (a waterfall), 

Airey Force, N. 
ford (a passage), Ox- 
forth (a way), Gar- 

forth, N. 
garth (an inclosure), 

N. and W. 
gate (a way), Sandgate 
ghyll (a ravine), N. 
glen (a deep dale), 

Glen Almain, G. 
grave (?), Gargrave 
ham (home), Chatham 
hoe (a hill), Ivinghoe 
holm (an islet), Ramps- 
holt (a wood), Knock- 
how, etc. (a hill), Green- 
how, N. 

hurst (a wood). Chisel- 

hythe (a port), Green- 

ing (a meadow). Ris- 

ing (patronymic ?), Bil- 

law (a hill), Warden- 
law, N. 

lea, etc. (a pasture, a 

lieu (Fr. a place), Beau- 
lieu Road 

mere (a lake), Gras- 

minster (a convent), 
Leominster, R. 

mouth (of a river), Ex- 

ness (a promontory), 

nor (north), Norfolk 

pen (a summit), Peny- 
gant, C. 

port (a harbour), New- 
port, R. 

raise (a height). Dun- 
mail Raise, N. 



rigg (a ridge), Lough- 

rigg, N. 
scar (a cliiF), G-ordale 

Scar, N. 
sex (Saxon), Essex, E. 

shaw (a wood), Oaken- 

sMre (a division), Berk- 
suf (soutii), Suffolk 
stead (a place), Hamp- 

stoke, etc. (a place), 

stone {st&n, 1.), Stain- 


stow (a place), Godstow 
strath (a dale), Lang- 

street (Lat. strata via), 

Stratford, E. 
tarn (a lake), Malham 

Tarn, N. 
thorp (a village), Low- 
thwaite (a field), Sea- 

thwaite, N. 
toft (an eminence), 

Langtoft, N. 
ton (a town), Taunton 
torr (a hill). Bell Torr 
try (C., a town), Daven- 


vaulx (valley), Eievaulx 

weald (forest or waste 
land), the Weald of 

well (a spring), Brace- 

wick (a recess, a place), 

wiske (C. wysg, a 
stream), N. 

with (by, near), Beck 
with, N. 

wold {weald), the "Wolds 

worth (?) Boulsworth (a 
high moor), Kenil- 
worth (an estate) 


For certain uses it is convenient to speak of Old English 
and of Modern Englisb. as of two distinct subjects ; but these 
two names denote two developments of one language, and in 
writing of Grammar it is neither possible nor desirable to treat 
separately of the two subjects naturally united. No hard and 
precise line can be correctly drawn, so as to separate forms 
often called ' obsolete ' from others that, although rarely seen 
or heard, are found here and there in Modem English litera- 
ture. Words belonging respectively to these two classes are 
given in the appended selections from Old Glossaries. 

In the abbreviations the figures 1. and 2. severally follow words found in 
E.I. or m E. II. ; jpr. — Present, p. « Past, » Perfect Participle. 

a, the contracted form 

of have 
abidden, endured ; p.p. 

of abide 
aboht, redeemed ; p.p. 

of abye 
alderliefest, dearest of 

allow, approve ; 1st 

axe, ask ; acsian, 1. 
bad, bade ; p. of bid 
behight, promised ; 

comp. p.p. of hatan, 1. 

Old English Words. 

beholden, bound; holde, 

belike, to favour, to 

bestead, make staid, 

or ' bring about ' 
beth, (we, ye, they) 

are, be ye ; beon, 2. 
betide, to happen ; 

tidian, 1. 
bide, endure, wait for ; 

bidan, 1. 
bilef, remained; p. of 

belifan, 1. 

bin, are, is ; pr. of beon. 

bistad (in some places) 

' beset ' 
boden, invited; p.p. of 

beoden, 2. 
bonn, ready ; p.p. of bua 
bound, ready = boun: 

from bua (to make 

ready), N. 
bounden, bound ; p.p. 

of bind 
brook, endure ; brucaUy 

1. (use) 



byschyne, shone upon ; 

^.■p. cormp.of schinen, 2. 
can, canst. (So ' shall,' 

* will,' * may,' and 

' dare ' are used.) 
chid, chidden; p.p. of 

chklen, 2. 
clave, adhered; p. of 

ckven, 2. 
clept, called; p.p. of 

clepen, 2. 
cloven, cleft; p.p. of 

con, to study; con, 1. 
couthe, knew [* 20] 
dalve, digged; p. of 

delven, 2. 
deem, think ; deman, 

1. ( = pronounce 

dight, arrayed ; p.p. 

of dihtan, 1. 
don, put on = ^ do on'' 
dout, put out = ' do 

drave, drove ; p.s. of 

driven, 2. 
draw'd = drew or 

e^^, incite; eggian, 1. 
fadge, suit ; ge-fegan, 

fear, to frighten ;/<^ra«, 

fat, fetched ; p.p. of 

fetten, 2. 
flang, flung ; p. oiflin- 

gen, 2. 
forewite, foreknow ; 

witen [§ 37] 
forlorn, lost; p.p. of 

forleosan, 1. [§ 37] 
freighted, fraught ; 

p.p. of freight, 

'fraucht ' 
fret, eaten away; p.p. 

oifreten, 2. 
freyne, ask; fregnan, 

gain-giving, misgiving 

[§ 37] 
gainsay, contradict 

gan, began [§ 21] 

gear (ready means), 

gere, 2 ; gearo (ready), 

gird, smite ; gyrdan, 

gives, give ; N. plural 
gramercy (many 

thanks), grand' merci, 

halidom, relics ; ' by my 

halidom' = an oath 
harry, distress ; ker- 

gian, 1. 
hight, named ; Mtew, 1. 
holden, held ; p.p. of 

healden, 2. 
holpen, helped ; p.p. of 

helpen, 2. 
hove, distended; p.p. 

of heave 
ihote ( = hight), named 
iwis, certainly (adverb) 
lahte, latched ; p. of 

lacchen, 2. 
lemman (friend), leman 
let, hinder; letten, 2. 
lench, laughed ; p. of 

latighen, 2. 
liste, it pleased ; lystan, 

lit, come by chance ; 

p.p. of lighten, 2. 
loken, locked; p.p. of 

hiken, 2. 
longe, on accoimt of; 

gelang, 1. 
lough, laughed; p. of 

laughen, 2. 
makar, maker = a poet 
methinks, to me it 

mistook, mistaken ; p.p. 
mun, must ; N. 
nabbe, have not = ne 

+ habbe 
ought, owe ; owen, 2. 
pert, manifest; apert, 

pheeze, scare, drive ; 

fysan, 1. 
pight, fixed ; p.p. of 

-picJicn, 2. 
planched, planked ; Fr. 


plight, pledged ; p.p. 

of pUghten, 2. 
quit, made void ; p.p. 

oi quiten, 2. 
quoth, said ; p. of que- 

then, 2. 
raught, reached ; p. 

and p.p. of rechen, 2. 
reck, to care for ; recan, 1 . 
red, rid ; redden, 2. 
redde, advised; p. of 

reden, 2. 
rede, advice ; reden, 2. 
reeve, a steward; ge- 

refa, 1. 
reft, bereft ; p.p. of 

rennede, ran [* 20] 
riven, torn ; p.p. of rive 
roode (the cross) ; rod, 

rounded, insinuated ; 

runian, 1. 
routhe (pity) ; hreow, 1. 
schawes, groves ; N. 

scua, 1. (shade) 
sched, divided; p.p. of 

scheden, 2. 
schent, ruined, dis- 
graced ; p.p. of schen- 

den, 2. 
schope, made ; p. of 

schapen, 2. 
schriven, confessed ; 

p.p. of schriven, 2. 
sheene, shining ; schi- 

nen, 2. 
shinde, shone; p. of 

shined, shone ; p.p. of 

smit, smitten; p.p. of 

sperr, to shut up ; spar- 
ran, 1. 
starven, starved; p.p. 

of stervcn, 2. 
straught, distracted ; 

strecchen, 2.( = stretch) 
strave, strove ; p. of 

strawed, strowed [§ 21] 
stricken, advanced ; p.p. 

of strike 



swink, to work ; smn- 

ken, 2. 
Bwonken, worked ; p.p. 

of swinJcen, 2. 
tarre, incite; terian, 1. 

(= vex) 
teen, grief; teona, 1. 

tide, come to pass ; 

tidian, 1. 
to wit, namely ; adv. 

from witen, 2. 
iincoutli, unknown ; un- 

coupe, 2. 
undern, 9 a.m. 
understanden, p.p. = 

uneath, hardly; eO^, 1. 

Tipholden, supported ; 

p.p. of uphold 

wanhope, despair; wan, 

1. (prefix = wanting) 
wantrust, distrust ; 

wa7i, 1. 
war (wary) ; w^r, 1. 
waxen, grow, grown ; 

weaxen, 2. 
ween, to imagine ; we- 

nan, 1. 
wend, to turn ; wendan, 

wight, any creature ; 

wiht, 1. 
will, wild ; Scottish 
winne, get; winnan, 1. 

(= fight) 
wiste, knew ; p. of 

witen, 2. 
with, against ; wtSer, 1 . 
witherwin, adversary ; 



wont, accustomed ; p.p. 

of wunien, 2. (to 

wood, mad; wod, 1. 
worhte, worked ; p. of 

worchen, 2. 
worj^e, to become ; 

weor^an, I. 
wot, knows ; pr. of 

witen, 2. 
wrake,vengeance ; wrcec, 

wreathen, wreathed ; 

p.p. of wrethen, 2. 
writhen, wreathed ; p.p. 

of writhen, 2. 
yclept, p.p. = named 
yode, went ; eode, 1. ( = 

ywis, certainly ; adv. 

It has been noticed that, in the English of the fourteenth 
century, there were three dialects ; that in Scotland, during 
the time 1350-1550, transitions in forms of speech were made 
more slowly than in Midland districts of England, and that, in 
later days, the ' Scottish,' or most conservative form of the 
Northern Dialect, was erroneously described as ' a language ' 
distinct from English. [See * 20.] 

Some references to writings and selections representing the three dia- 
lects may be given here. 

Example of the Southern Dialect : ' The Ayenbite of Inwyt ' (pub. for 
E. E. Text Soc.) 

Exs. of the Midland Dialect: 'William of Palerne' (E, E. Text Soc); 
' Piers the Plowman ' (part of B. text, ed. by Skeat) ; the Publications of 
4ie Chaucer Society. 

Exs. of the Northern Dialect : ' The Bruce,' by Barbour (E. E. Text 
Soc.) ; ' Complaynt of Scotlande ' (ed. by Murray, for E. E. Text Soc.) ; 
* Cursor Mundi ' (E. E. Text Soc.) 

The more important variations of words in the extensive 
vocabulary of Old English are such as belong to dialects, or 
serve to define periods in the development of the language ; 
but numerous other variations exist, which are nothing more 
than so many modes of spelling, chosen by writers who 
severally claimed, in this respect, unbounded freedom, and 
knew nothing of any rules belonging to orthography. Varia- 
tions of this class make more copious than they would other- 


wise appear the glossaries required by readers of Old English, 
Its wealth of words and its numerous variations of spelling 
may both be studied in the glossaries, etc., to which references 
are here appended. 

E.II. Glossaries, etc. : Morris (Gloss, to * Cursor Mundi ') ; Ellis (' On 
E. E. Pronunciation ') ; Glossarial Indexes to Morris and Skeat's * Spec. 
of E. E. ; ' Gloss. Index to Skeat's ' Spec, of Eng. Lit., 1394-1597 ; ' Halli- 
"WELL ('Archaic Words,' etc. — more than 50,000); ' Promptorium Par- 
Tulorum' (Eng.-Lat. Gloss, of 15th c. ed. by Wat); Stratmann ('Diet, of 
Old Eng.') E.II. Grammar: Bernard ('William Langland'); Koch; 
Latham; Matzner; Morris. 


Many words that are constituent parts of Modern English 
may, with respect to their sources, be called Latin. Of these 
the oldest are some Roman names of places, such as Chester, 
Exeter, and Lancaster. Next come the ecclesiastical terms 
introduced in translations made by Augustine's immediate 
followers, and in writings by other churchmen who, after the 
sixth century, used a considerable number of such words as 
are now represented by ' choir,' ' cloister,' ' creed,' ' monk,' 
and ' priest.' More numerous words of the same class were, 
in the course of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, made 
more or less current by writers of translations, and by 
preaching friars who, in their quotations of Latin, often re- 
peated and expounded their original Latin terms. In those 
times a teacher would hardly use such a word as fortitude 
without adding the interpretation ' that is, strength.' By these 
and similar means the people were often made to see the 
force and utility of general terms, and, while mainly holding 
fast their own language of common life, they soon learned to 
like their new Roman words ; many altered forms borrowed 
through the medium of Old French ; others, less numerous 
and less altered, such as ' firmament,' ' innocent,' ' medicine,' 
and 'penitence,' and several borrowed directly from Latin. 
To the latter class considerable additions were made in the 
second half of the fifteenth century, while in Scotland the 
poets of that time introduced too many Latin words, and so 
made their writings more and more unlike the rude language 
spoken by the people. In England, at the same time, and in 
the former half of the sixteenth century, the Midland Dialect, 
greatly enriched by appropriations of Latin, was gradually 
assuming the character and the position of Standard English, 
[See * 20.] 
• of 


In the latter half of the sixteenth century, or in the time 
when Elizabeth was reigning, the establishment of Modern 
English took place. This was the result of several powerful 
and concurrent causes — the general intellectual excitement 
spreading among educated men, the introduction of printing, 
and the revival of classical literature, which was soon followed 
by the publication of many translations from Latin, Italian,^ 
and French, and by large importations of Latin words. 

Of the numerous Latin compounds introduced by writers of the seven- 
teenth century many have failed to establish themselves as parts of the 
spoken tongue, though they still keep their places in dictionaries, compiled 
in the eighteenth century by scholars who knew more of Latin than of 
English. To make room for numerous long words {e.g. ' deosculate,' ' de- 
lacrymation,' and ' fuliginous ') compilers cast away many English words of 
which they did not know the sources, and excluded from so-called ' English 
dictionaries ' such quotations of proverbial and idiomatic phrases as would 
have shown the uses and meanings of old words too carelessly called ' obso- 
lete.' By this process of casting away a great deal of Old English, a 
' Latinized ' stylo of diction was made predominant, and the effects of this 
innovation have not yet passed away. Too many writers use words of 
which they do not know the true meanings, and too many readers acquire a 
liking for 'vague, glossy, and unfeeling' forms of expression. Meanwhile, 
in some books, and in too many sermons addressed to the people, a lan- 
guage that may be called partly foreign, or half -Latin, is used as the mean& 
of teaching. It is, of course, understood that not a word of disrespect i& 
here applied to Eoman words employed with their true meanings and set 
in their right places. 

The words chiefly wanted in Old English of the earlier 
time were terms denoting general ideas. The tongue had 
numerous adjectives, like 'empty,' 'fair,' 'kind,' 'ready,' and 
' swift,' and besides these some nouns of general import, like 
' hardihood,' ' knowledge,' ' neediness,' and ' readiness ; ' but 
there was in the latter class no great variety, and no remark- 
able extension was made in their meanings. Writers of the 
higher order, who could not well express their best thoughts 
by means of such words as ' boxumnes ' (obedience), ' saccles ' 
(innocent), and 'onesprute' (inspiration), were sometimes 
compelled to give to their own old words, and to their later 
words borrowed from French, meanings higher than at 
first belonged to them. Accordingly 'hende' (handy) was 
made to mean ' gracious,' and a noun derived from ' de- 
bonere ' ( = c/e hon air) was used as a word equivalent to 
' grace ' or to ' goodness ' in the highest degree. The compre- 
hensive and higher words then wanted were afterwards 
supplied by Latin, and at the same time means for the con- 
struction of scientific terms were afibrded. The student whose 


iirst work is observation of facts must have names to denote 
their differences and their likenesses ; but tbronghout his 
whole process he keeps in view one main result, which is their 
true ' classification.' This one word ' classification ' is a fair 
example of the comprehensive terms supplied by Latin com- 
pounds. The same tongue affords nouns synonymous with 
some Old English names, and other words having the meanings 
of verbs and nouns borrowed from French, as in the examples 
' persecute ' and 'pursue,' 'redemption * and 'ransom.' The 
inconvenience attending a common use of compounds of 
which the stems are not well understood has been noticed. 
The analysis of compounds of which the parts are Latin be- 
longs to an important section of Etymology. [_See § 40 and 
the second Vocabulary.] 

Of the numerous words borrowed from Latin, those that 
are purely abstract or general remain so far permanent and 
unaltered, with respect to their meanings, that they may well 
represent the duration of Rome itself. Examples of these 
firm words are seen in 'affirmation,' 'transition,' and .'renova- 
tion.' But in other words meanings less abstract, or more 
nearly associated in any way with the passions of men, are of 
<;ourse variable, as may be noticed in such examples as ' ani- 
mosity,' 'attorney,' 'censure,' 'insolent,' 'officious,' 'opinion,' 
and ' resentment.' Several Latin words have still, in the 
Bible of the seventeenth century, and in the Book of Common 
Prayer, meanings that are elsewhere obsolete — for example, 
* allow,' ' comfort,' and ' prevent.' These words, in the places 
referred to, have kept original meanings that, in common 
talk, have been diminished and altered. 


When compared with numerous Roman words coming 
directly from Latin, or indirectly, through the medium of 
Old French, other contributions to the resources of the English 
Language may well seem unimportant. A few examples of 
naturalized words coming from various sources are here ap- 
pended. Words belonging to Modern French or to Modem 
Italian are omitted. 

American. — canoe, maize, potato, tobacco, -wig^ram. 
^raiic.— alchemy, algebra, assassin, caravan, mosque, saltan, talisman, 
vizier, zenith. 

Chinese. — caddy, mandarin, nankeen, tea. 
Butch. — schooner, sloop, yacht. 



Hebrew. — Amen, cherub (pi. cherubim), hallelujah, hosanna, jubilee^ 
leviathan, sabbath, seraph (pi. seraphim), shibboleth. 

Hindu {etc.) — calico, curry, jiingle, pundit, rajah. 

Persian. — azure, bazaar, dervish, emerald, lilac, sherbet, paradise. 

Polynesian. — taboo, tattoo. 

Portuguese. — caste, palaver. 

Spanish. — armada, alligator, mosquito. 

Turkish. — divan, dragoman, janissaries, scimitar. 

The sources of English words are abundant, but in some instances the 
language is poor with respect to synonyms. As examples of words having 
few equivalents these may be noticed : — ' characteristic,' * use ' (the noun), 
and the adjective 'curious,' employed with an objective meaning. There 
are not many words that, witJi respect to language, can well take the place 
of ' sources.' The Grreek word ' Etymon,' if accepted so that it might take s 
for the plural, would often serve as a convenient word. After all the care 
spent in research, there are words of which the history remains obscure — 
for example, the noun ' boy,' and the verbs ' carp,' ' hamper,' and ' haunt.' 

The variety of the sources noticed is briefly shown in the following list. 
The languages to which the words severally belong are indicated by abbrevia- 
tions. It will be noticed that the words borrowed from Latin belong severally 
to four periods. 

Avon, Cym. 
carp, V. (?) 
Chester, Lat., 
child, Eng. 
choir, Lat., 2. 
feU, North. 

firmament, Lat.,3, 
gamboge, Malay 
guide, Old Er. 
hamper, v. (?) 
haunt, V. (?) 
horticulture, Lat. 

jubilee, Heb. 
mandarin, Chin, 
mosque, Arab, 
mosquito. Span, 
palaver. Port, 
paradise, Pers. 
precis, Mod. Er. 

rajah, Hind, 
scimitar, Turk, 
tattoo, Polyn. 
thermometer, Gr 
virtuoso, Ital. 
wigwam, Amer. 
yacht, Dutch 

Weitebs on the History, etc., of the English Language. 

In the appended list of references to books, only a few a/re named; but 
these are enough to lead to a knowledge of other useful works on the same 
extensive subject. The abbreviations ' Eng^ and ' Germ.' denote the two lan- 
guages English and Grerman; * etym' and ^pron.,' in references to dictionaries, 
are substitutes for the words ' etymological ' and ^pronouncing* In references 
to writers on English Grammar, the sign III. indicates that the writer whose 
name immediately precedes treats of M.E. in its historical union with E.I. 
and E.II. 

"Writers on the History of the English Language : Latham, Marsh, 
Morris, Skeat, Trench. Old Dictionaries, etc. : ' Promptorium Parvu- 
lorum' (Eng.-Lat., 15th c); Palsgrave (Fr.-Eng., 1530); 'Manipulus 
Vocabulorum' (Eng.-Lat., 1570); Skinner (Eng.-Lat., 1671); Phillips 
(•World of Words,' 1678; the same work ed. by Kersey, 1706); Bailey 
(1735); Johnson (1755). New Dictionaries, etc.: Abbott ('Concordance 
to Pope's Writings'); Cruden ('Concordance to the Bible'); Mulleb 
(Eng.-Germ.) ; Ogilvie (etym. pron., ed. by Cull) ; Eoget (' Thesaurus ') ; 
Schmidt (' Shakespeare Lexicon ') ; Trench (' Select Glossary') ; Webster 
(etym. pron., ed. by Mahn) ; Wedgwood (etym.) ; Smith (' Synonyms ') ; 
SouLE ('Synonyms'). — Writers on English Grammar: Abbott ('Shake- 
spearean Grammar'); Haldeman ('Affixes'); Jonson, Ben. (17th c.) ; 
Koch (Germ., III.); Latham (III.); Mason; Matzner (Germ. III.); 
Morris (III.) 



Analyses of vocabularies employed by several good writers 
of English give the following results, of which the accuracy 
is, of course, approximate. In some considerable parts of our 
literature, the number of English words, compared with that 
of Latin and other borrowed words commonly used, has 
nearly the ratio of five to one. In a total of four hundred and 
eighty words, the places occupied by English words are nearly 
four hundred, and the places where Latin and other borrowed 
words occur are about eighty. But the latter number is 
greatly increased when writings on politics, jurisprudence, 
philology, theology, and philosophy are examined ; and, again, 
the number of borrowed words is increased when treatises on 
the arts and sciences are made subjects of analysis. In these 
the number of the Greek compounds is considerable. In 
general literature, Latin compounds, compared with those 
made of Greek words, are proportionately numerous. The 
latter belong especially to writings on the sciences. [/See the 
Vocabularies 11. and III.] 

Greek compounds are extensively employed in treatises on astronomy, 
botany, chemistry, geography, geology, mathematics, mechanics, mineralogy, 
optics, and zoology. [See Vocabulary III.] 

Latin compounds are largely employed by writers on education, ethics, 
history, jurisprudence, national economy, and politics. [See Vocabu- 
lary n.] 

Numerous compounds borrowed from Latin and G-reek are employed by 
critics and other writers on the fine arts : — architecture, sculpture, painting, 
music, and poetry. [See the Vocabularies II. and III.] 

In verse the number of Latin words is, in proportion, much smaller than 
their number in prose. With respect to the use of words having their 
sources in First English, the general tendency of poetry is conservative. 

Our extensive modern uses of Latin compounds are closely 
connected with the history of culture. Of several compounds 
the stems are words that once had crude meanings, such as 
are still connected with many Old English words — expressions 
naturally belonging to times when rapacity wore no disguise, 
and when acts of violence were the means of conquest on one 
side and of defence on the other. The first meanings of 
certain stems are now forgotten. Thus the force of sacan (to 
fight) does not belong to the verb ' for-s4ke,' which serves as 
an instance of diminution or loss of force. In some Latin 
compounds transitions of the same kind have taken place. 
Stems have lost so far their primitive meanings that words 


originally relating to the camp and the forum serve now to 
express ideas belonging to the literature of culture. 

The difference of primary and secondary meanings is shown by the 
■words ' greed,' ' stourl ' fight,' ' ransack,' and ' war,' set in contrast with the 
words ' rapacity,' ' acts of violence,' ' conquest,' ' spoliation,' and ' defence.' 
The crude meanings of the first series have hardly lost their force, while 
our modern uses of the Latin words show a diminution of meaning. The 
noun 'rapacity ' hardly retains all the rude force of 'greed,' though the verb 
rcupio = reafian (to rob). In early Greek and in Latin the root of ago 
belonged to words used in warfare, of which no thought is implied in the 
derivative ' ag-ent ' and the compound ' trans-act-ion.' The chief cause of 
such diminutions and of other changes of meaning is clear. Where stems 
do not belong to our popular tongue, the force of compounds is vaguely 
understood. Hence Latin words, in poetry, cannot have the force of such 
pure English as was often written by Woebsworth. Wherever the design 
is to denote forcibly our immediate impressions, or to excite feelings closely 
associated with well-known words, pure English is the language to be 
chosen. But it cannot supply all the words for writing on government and 
education, or vocabularies appropriate to treatises on the arts and sciences. 
In these, as in other departments, such aids as are supplied by Latin and 
Greek are most valuable. 

The history of our composite language, when extensively studied, serves 
as a history of transitions in culture. Alterations of language have fol- 
lowed changes of institutions — especially those of the seventh, thirteenth, 
and sixteenth centuries — and thoughts more comprehensive than those 
expressed by earlier forms have been developed by means of Latin com- 
pounds. To these words new meanings have been given by alterations of 
opinion and belief; hence there arise, in close association with studies of 
words, questions too important to be treated here, though they may be 
suggested. Should the higher meanings given to certain words be viewed 
as results of ' evolution,' as effects of a law immanent in society? or must 
they be ascribed to historical events and to institutions founded on autho- 
rity ? These are examples of questions connected with the study of lan- 
guage. In relation to inquiries here suggested, the historical study of 
English has great importance. 

Latin compounds are so extensively employed, that ignor- 
ance of their structure leads to wrong uses of words forming 
a large proportionate part of our language. The meanings of 
Latin stems, in all derivatives and compounds generally used, 
should be taught as carefully as we teach spelling. 

Latin and Greek vocabularies are appended to this Grammar. They 
contain stems to which belong some thousands of words. More than a 
thousand belong to the seven verbs cd'pio, fero, mitto, jpUco, pono, Undo, 
and teneo. 

The Accentuation of Latin Compounds. 

1. Words ending in ian, ion, ior, ious, eons, or uous have 
the accent on the antepenultimate. \_See § 42.] 


2. In componnds of the first order the English tendency 
is to place the accent on the definitive word ; but in some 
polysyllables the Latin rale so far prevails that the accent 
falls on the antepenultimate. [/See §§5 and 38.] 

Ex.: 'aqueduct,' 'drmistice,' 'artifice,' 'magnanimous,* 

* manuscript,' 'monopoly,' 'multiform,' 'omnipotence.' [^ee 


3. Where the English tendency and the Latin rule con- 
tradict each other, the former sometimes prevails, as in the 
words 'agriculture,' 'melancholy,' and 'orthoepy.' [See §38.] 

4. In compounds of the second order the English ten- 
dency is to place accents of nouns on separable prefixes. 
This tendency prevails also in Latin nouns, where the chief 
parts are monosyllabic, [^ee §§37 and 38.] 

Ex. : ' abstract,' * advent,' ' college,' ' comfort,' ' index,' 

* preface,' 'proverb.' 

5. In many compounds of two syllables the accent is re- 
moved from the first to the second syllable, in order to make 
verbs distinct from nouns. 

Ex. : ' abstract,' ' export,' ' extract,' ' import,' ' object,' 

* present,' 'protest,' 'record,' ' rebel,' 'refuse.' 

The Structure of Latin Compounds. 

Two stems — one called the verb-stem, the other the 
supine-stem — are used in the structure of Latin compounds. 
The latter stem is usually formed by adding tu or su to the 
root, or to the verb-stem, and this addition often requires a 
change in a •preceding consonant. In ago the root (which in 
this instance = the verb-stem) is ag, and if to this stem tu 
is added, a sharp follows a flat consonant ; in other words, 
the surd dental t follows the sonant guttural g. Assimilation 
of the two consonants here takes place, and, to make pro- 
nunciation easy, the g is changed to c in the supine-stem 
actu. From the former stem the derivative word ' ag-ent ' is 
formed, and the latter stem, casting oS" the final vowel, 
appears in the words 'act-ion' and ' act-ive.' In the word 
' colony ' col, the verb-stem of colo (' I cultivate '), is seen, 
and the supine-stem cultu appears in the word ' culture.' In 
facio (* I make ') the verb-stem is f ac, and the supine-stem is 
facta, which, casting off the final vowel, appears in ' fact ' 
and in ' faction.' But neither of these two stems is found 
unchanged in the words ' deficient ' and ' defect.' When serv- 
ing as parts of compounds, several Latin verbs change the 



vowel of the stem. Thus facio, coinpomided with the particle 
de, changes a to i, as in the verb deficio, and changes a to e 
in compounds made with the supine-stem, as in the nonn 
defectus. These two vowel-changes are seen also in the 
words 'deficient' and ' defect.' The verb fero (' I bear,' or 
' bring ') has no supine-stem, but borrows one — latu — from 
another verb. Hence the difference of forms in the two words 
' re-fer-ence ' and ' re-lat-ion,' of which the meanings are 
closely allied. 

It may be noticed here that, to show the structure of words, they are 
diA^ded as in the examples * con-struct-ion ' and • re-lat-ion ; ' but, in 
accordance with pronunciation, words are divided as in the examples ' con- 
struc-tion ' and ' re-la-tion.' 

The utility of numerous compounds having Latin stems is 
obvious. There is no Teutonic compound that can con- 
veniently express the meaning of ' composition,' and to substi- 
tute, instead of ' impervious,' the cumbrous word ' un-through- 
fare-som ' — a compound of which the four parts are English 
— would be a tedious process. Compounds of which the 
elements are Latin are mostly recommended by ease in both 
spelling and pronunciation and by precision of meaning. 
ISee the Vocabularies I. and II.] 

The knowledge of a few stems of Latin verbs, when added 
to a knowledge of suffixes and prefixes, will give the meanings 
of numerous compounds. From the verb pono scores of 
words are formed, and when it is known that posit means 
' placed,' the uses of such words as ' composition ' and 'pre- 
position ' are obvious. The verbs capio ('I take'), -specio 
('I behold'), teneo (' I hold '), and tendo (' I stretch ') are 
sources of an extensive vocabulary. 

In the appended examples of compounds, the meanings of suffixes and 
prefixes are not given. [See §§ 29, 31, and 38.] 

The number 2. points out the second or supine stem, as used in compo- 
sition. The letter c. refers to a vowel-change made in a stem when it is 
employed as one part of a compound. 

Prefixes. Stems. 

ad jacio (2. c. ject.), jplace 

ad verbum, verb 

ag gravis (adj.), heavy 

col lego (2. lect.), gather 

com p5no (2. posit), j3^^ 

con curro, run 

con fero, bring 

con jungo (2. junct.), Jom 




' adjective.' 


' adverb.' 


' aggravate.' 


' collection.' 


' composition.' 


' concurrent.' 


' conference.' 


' conjunction.' , 











non -i- de 

sono, sound 
statuo (2. c. stit.),se^ 
traho (2. tract.), draw 
dico (2. diet.), say 
facio (c. fie), mahe 
lego (2. lect.), choose 
flecto (2. flex.), lend 
venio, come 
duco, lead 
lego (2. lect), read 
scribo (2. script), write 
pono (2. posit.), j9Zace 
habeo (2. c. Mbit.) 
pello (2. puis.), drive 
tester, hear ivitness 
video, see 
fero, hear 
fero (2. lat.), hear 




* consonant.' 


* constitution.' 


' contraction.' 


' contradiction.*^ 


* deficient.' 


' elect.' 


* inflexion.' 

* intervene,' 


' introduce.' 


' lecture.' 


' nondescript.' 


' preposition.' 


' prohibit.' 


' propulsion.' 


' protest.' 


' providence.' 


' reference.' 


' relation.' 


A few examples are given of Greek words serving as 
parts of compounds established in Modern English. \_8e& 
Vocabulary III.] 

Greek Words, Compounds. 

arche (government) + a (negative) * anarchy.' 

autos (self) + kratos (power) * autocracy.' 

bios (life) + graphe (writing) ' biography.' 

chronos (time) + logos (discourse) ' chronology.' 

dLemos (the people) + kratos 'democracy.' 

ge (<^e ear^/^) + graphe 'geography.' i 

hieros (a priest) + arche ' hierarchy.' 

lusis (loosing) + ana (thorough) ' analysis.' 

nomos (law) + astron (star) ' astronomy.' 

pathos (disease) + logos ' pathology.' 

temno (cut) + ana * ' anatomy,' 

thermon (heat) + metron (measure) ' thermometer.* 

thesis (placing) + syn (with) * synthesis.' 

topos (a place) + graphe ' topography.* 

tupos (a type) + graphe * typography.' 

zoon (an animal) + logos * zoology.' 



Alterations that, in the course of time, have been made 
in the forms of English words are so numerous that their 
adequate treatment would require space far exceeding the 
limits of a handbook ; but an outline may show the means of 
making many changes, and some results of the process may 
be indicated. Of all the means employed the most important 
are irregular uses of twenty-six letters in writing signs for 
forty-one or forty-two sounds. [See § 1, ** 2 and 3.] Of 
these various and irregular uses one example must here suffice. 
The sound of a, pronounced as in the word ' pale,' is denoted 
by a in ' fate,' ' haste,' and ' mate ; ' by ai in ' plain,' ' rain,' and 

* vain ; ' by ay in ' day,' ' ray,' and ' way ; ' by ea in the verbs 

* bear,' 'break,' and 'tear;' by ei in 'deign,' 'reign,' and 
' vein ; ' lastly, by ey in the verbs ' convey ' and ' obey,' and 
in the noun ' prey.' Among these and other modes of vari- 
ously denoting one sound, some may serve, here and there, to 

' indicate sources of words ; but in general variations, like those 
here noticed, can give no safe guidance in etymology. The 
sound of a in ' pale ' is denoted by ai in ' fair ' and ' rain,' of 
which the First English forms are fager and regen ; by ^i in 

* air ' and ' praise,' from the Old French air and preis ; by ay 
and ei in ' way ' and ' their,' of which the First English forms 
are iveg and ])dra ; and, lastly, by ay and ei in the verbs ' stay ' 
and ' deign,' of which the Old French forms are esteir and 
deigner. It is obvious that such uses of letters can give no 
clear guidance, though it is granted that ai and ei, in Enghsh, 
often represent ai and ei (or oi) in Old French. 

Vowels — initial, medial, or final — are in some words 
omitted. Ex. : spice (from the O.F. espisce), pert (O.F. 
upert) ; captain (O.F. cajpitaine), and creed (E.I. credo). 

Consonants — ^initial, medial, or final — are in some words 
omitted. jEx. : ' it ' (E.I. hit), ' apron ' (O.F. najperon), ' slice ' 
(O.F. esdice), ' Craven ' (Cym. Craigvan), ' Thursday ' (E.I. 
punres-dag), ' deceit ' (E.II. deceijpt) riddle (E.I. rcedels), 
anvil ( anvelt). 

In some words both consonants and vowels are together 
-omitted. Ex.: 'drake' (O.'N. andriki), ' spence,' a pantry 
(O.F. despense), 'spite' (O.'F. desp it), 'lark' (E.I. Idwerce), 
Mord' (E.I. hldford), 'lady' (E.II. lafdi), Oxford (E.II. 
Oxenforde), ' garment ' (O.F. garniment), riches (E.II. richesse, 
in the singular number ; pi. richesses), England (E.I. Engla- 


Icmd). In the last word the first two syllables form the 
genitive case of the plural Engle (= Englishmen). 

In words less numerous than those already noticed, letters 
have been added to old forms. Ex.: 'whole' (E.I. lidl)y 

* could ' (E.II. coude), ' groom ' (E.I. guma = a man), 

* nimble ' (E.I. nemol), ' sovereign (O.F. sovrain). 

Ti-ansposition of letters has taken place in some words. 
Ex.: 'apple' (E.I. ajppel), 'thrill' (E.I. ]>yrUan), 'white'' 
(E.I. hwU). 

Consonant mutations (or ' permutations ') are distinctly noticed in 
another place. 

One of the results of alterations concurrent with other 
causes is that many words and syllables coming from different 
sources have been reduced to identity of form, as may be 
seen in ' light,' the adjective (= not heavy), compared with 
'light,' the verb (= kindle and enlighten), and with ' light, '^ 
the second syllable in the noun and verb ' delight.' The first 
syllable is French in ' wam-tain ; ' but in the compound 
' mam-mast ' the first part is English. Examples of formal 
coincidences are numerous. 

There are at least two meanings for each of the words ' bound,' ' chase,' 
' hail,' ' mail,' ' pale,' ' pine,' ' port,' ' pound,' * race,' ' rank,' and ' well ; '' 
three or four for each in ' bill,' ' case,' * check,' ' flag,' ' lay,' ' rail,' and 
' sound ; ' Jive, or perhaps six, meanings may be given to each of the words 
'bay,' 'block,' and ' box.' The noun ' hamper' (a basket) has its origin in 
Low Latin ; but of the verb ' hamper ' the source is not so readily found. 
Some old uses of this verb remind us of the O.F. verb empeirer (to impair).. 
The word ' fell,' of which the sources are E.I. and O.N., serves as a tran- 
sitive verb, or as the Past of an intransitive, and has besides the meanings 
' cruel,' a ' hide ' or ' skin,' and a ' hill ' or ' high moorland.' 

Compounds, by means of alteration and contraction, have 
assumed the appearance of derivatives, or of simple words. 

Thus ' sheriff,' in structure, looks like ' bailiff,' but comes from the E.I. 
compound scire-gerefa. In hlaford, the E.I. form of ' lord,' a contraction 
has been made (it is said) of hldf (a loaf or portion of bread) + wedrd (a 
keeper and distributor). Accepting this etymology (which is hardly clear), 
the primitive ofl&ce of a hlaf-weard, or ' lord,' was in some degree like one 
instituted in ancient Egypt, during a time of famine. [^G-en. xLi. 48-56.] 

Another result of alterations is that some words of foreign 
origin have assumed the appearance of native compounds. 

For example, ' rose-mary,' the name of a fragrant herb, comes from the 
Latin rosmarinus. The word ' b^ef-eaters ' is probably a misrepresentation 
of tlie O.F. name huffetiers (from huffet\, and ' causeway ' may belong to 
the French cauchie, an alteration of the first Latin word in calceata (via) ; 


■while the O.F. word escrevisse may be the source of the apparent compound 

* cray-fish.' 

In writing of formal alterations made in words, several 
<;ompound terms, borrowed from Greek and Latin, are em- 
ployed, and these terms may here be noticed. 

aphderesis {Gr., taking away from the beginning). Ex. : ' sport' (O.F. 
desport), 'story' (O.F. histoire). 

apocope {Gr., taking away from the end). Ex. : * gear ' (E.I. gearwa), 
'harbour' (E.II. herherwe). 

assimilation {Lat., making like). Ex. : ' gramercy ! ' (an old inter- 
jectional form, from the French grand' merci), ' gospel ' (E.I. godspell), 
' stirrup ' (E.I. stigrap). 

elision {Lat, cutting off). Ex. : ' 6nvoy ' (Fr. envoye), ' writer ' (E.I. 

epenthesis {Gr., adding within). Ex. : ' 6mpty ' (E.I. emtig). 

metathesis {Gr., transposition). Ex.: 'frith' (Sc. firth) 'wheat' 
(E.I. hwmte). 

paragdge {Gr., adding at the end). Ex.: 'amongst' (E.I. amang), 
' ancient ' (O.F. ancien), ' limb ' (E.I. lim). 

prosthesis (6^r., adding at the beginning). Ex.: 'newt' (E.II, ew^), 
' smelt ' {melt), ' whole ' (E.I. Ml). 

syncope ( Gr., blending two syllables). Ex. : ' head ' (E.I. heafod), 

* lark ' (E.I. lawerce), ' made ' (E.II. 

Of all words in Modem English, those least altered are 
words borrowed lately and directly from Latin. "With respect 
to nnmerons other forms, the general results of manifold 
alterations are these : — our modern modes of spelling indicate 
truly neither pronunciation nor etymology. 

There are in the English now B^dken. forty -one ox forty-two sounds; to 
denote these sounds there are only twenty-six letters, and of these deficient 
signs the best possible use is not made. \^See ** 2, 3.] 


Alterations, such as have been noticed, are seen when our 
attention is bounded by the limits of one language; other 
mutations, more extensive and in their results more perma- 
nent, are observed on passing from one lang-aage to another. 
The history of language is, for the most part, a story of rest- 
less transition, though institutions, ecclesiastical and scholastic, 
have given stability to the written and printed forms of 
■classical Greek and Latin. The Latin of the golden age has 
thus been preserved, and the style of Cicero may here and 
there be still admired in compositions belonging to the nine- 
teenth century. But that literary and classical tongue — never 
-spoken by the people — was, in its golden time, as closely 
limited as it was highly cultivated. Its monumental forms 


were, dnring mediaeval times, represented, more or less im- 
perfectly, in the literature of the Church, and they were after- 
wards brought to light by the labours of many zealous scholars. 
Meanwhile, in the course of the Middle Ages, the popular 
tongue called Roman {lingua Romana rustica) was mixed with 
words introduced by barbarous peoples, and out of the mixture 
of ' rustic Latin ' with some foreign stems there arose several 
new languages and dialects. In the land now called France 
the dialects (of which the constituent parts belonged mostly 
to Roman stems) were mainly divided into two groups ; one 
including the dialects spoken in the South, the other those 
spoken in the North. In the latter division the dialect called 
French was, in the course of time, made predominant over all 
others, though these did not disappear. Numerous words 
once called Roman thus passed through mutations manifold, 
and such as can be only partially classified or made to corre- 
spond with known rules and habits of transition. Extensive 
and permanent alterations, like those here noticed, take place 
in the development of new languages, and are seen in passing 
from one language to another. 

Of such consonant mutations as may be called occasional, and may take 
place within the limits of one living tongue, the Cymraeg language aiFords 
abundant examples. Here consonant mutations are made in accordance 
with certain rules of position. Thus the initial dental in tad changes so as 
to lead to the forms dad, nhad, and thad. These mutations are occasional, 
and are made as certain sequences of words require. Meanwhile tad re- 
mains, as the radical form of which the others are variations. 

In passing from one language to another we observe, in 
forms cognate with respect to their remote origin, a series of 
consonant mutations of which the results are, in each lan- 
guage, made permanent. For example, in certain words 
where <j> is seen in the Greek, the Gothic has b ; where the 
former language has 5 the latter has t, and where the former 
has r the latter has th. Of similar mutations a considerable 
number are classified as changes made in accordance with 
certain laws or habits of transition. The aspirate becomes 
flat ; the flat becomes sJiarp^ and the sharp becomes aspirate. 
By using initials, instead of the words ' aspirate,' * flat,' and 
' sharp,' the general order of these mutations may be briefly 
indicated : — 

1. a . f 

2. f . s 

3. s a 

Information respecting certain modifications of the order here noticed 
"Will be found in books on comparative philology. The few examples here 



given will show how cognate words may differ in their forms. It will bo 
remembered that Grothic and E.I. both belong to the Low German division 
of the Teutonic languages. 

Examples of Comonant Mutations. 




1. OvydTTjp 


dohtor {daughter) 



duru (a. door) 



beran {to bear) 



broker {brother) 



georne {gladly) 



geotan {to pour) 



-geard {a yard) 

2. y6vv 


cneow {a knee) 



tear {a tear) 



ten {ten) 



teran {to tear) 



tredw {a tree) 



twa {two) 

oSois {-6vTos) 


t6« {a tooth) 

3. irapd 


fram {from) 



faeder {father) 



faran {to go) 



Jjurstig {thirsty) 



>e {that or the) 



)>ri {three) 

[ar mutations, with 

some modif 

ications, are observed, 

thic and E.I. to the 

mediaeval la 

nguage called Old Higl 




1. anthar 


andar {the other) 



den {that or the) 



dri {three) 



du {thou) 

2. boka 


puGcha {a book) 



prechan {to break) 



pruoder {brother) 



tor {a door) 



tarran {to dare) 



karto {an inclosure) 

3. fadar 


vatar {father) 



varan {to go) 



zehan {ten) 



Zand {a tooth) 



zuei {two) 



wizzan {to know) 

Words coming from different sources, and having different 


meanings, may be reduced to a formal identity, while unlike 
forms may have one origin and one meaning. Namerons 
instances of this disguised relationship have been collected 
and classified. The collation of cognate words has been con- 
nected with extensive historical researches, and these com- 
bined studies have given rise to a remarkably comprehensive 
theory of related languages. Accordicg to this theory, several 
of the Asiatic languages, and by far the greater number of the 
European, are classed as languages belonging to one common 
stock — the so-called ' Aryan,' spoken (it is supposed) in pre- 
historic times, in a region of which Bactriana might possibly 
be the central district. This primitive * Aryan ' had its 
dialects ; and, in the course of time, extensive migrations and 
other causes of separation made such differences in modes of 
speech, that out of the first series of the * Aryan ' dialects new 
languages were gradually developed. Among their means of 
separation from one another the changes here called conso- 
nant mutations were introduced, and of these some were made 
more or less permanent. For example, where the dental con- 
sonant (= th) was pronounced as an aspirate by the people 
of one tribe, another tribe acquired the habit of substituting 
the flat dental sound denoted by d, and thus the Gothic word 
dour (a door) was made unlike the cognate word dvpa. 
Similar changes were made permanent as habits in the pro- 
nunciation of labial, dental, and guttural consonants. Thus, 
in the course of time, the people of one tribe might have in 
their own tongue altered forms of many stems belonging to 
languages called ' foreign,' and might be incapable of under- 
standing numerous words that formerly belonged to all the 
tribes of the people called ' Aryan.' 

To a reader of Modern English a passage in E.I. may seem foreign, 
though it does not contain a single stem that is not often employed in the 
reader's own English. In this case the chief sources of difference are not 
such consonant mutations as have been briefly noticed here. 

The two main divisions in the * Aryan ' family are the 
Asiatic and the European. To the former belong Sanskrit 
and Old Persian. To the latter division belong the Keltic 
languages {Gaelic and Cymraeg) ; the Teutonic or German 
(Low and High) ; the Letto- Slavonic (including Lettish and 
Snissian), and the Pelasgic (Greek and Latin). 

The Oriental languages called ' Semitic ' — including Hebrew, SyriaCy 
and Arabic — are not classed with the languages called 'Aryan.' From 
this large family only a few of our European tongues are excluded : — 
JBasaue, Estkonian, Finnish, Hungarian^ Lappish, and Turkish. Of the 



comprehensive theory here so briefly noticed more can hardly be told in 
this place ; but the following references may serve to direct young students 
to copious sources of information: — Max Mullee ('Lectures on the 
Science of Language'); Schleicher ('Die Sprachen Europas;' 'Compen- 
dium der vergleichenden Grammatik,' etc) 


Some practical rules for dividing syllables have been given, but must 
again be noticed, as they are more or less restricted or Trwdified by certain 
historical rules. The seven practical rules here given have mostly reference 
to pronunciation. Historical rules prescribe such divisions as show the struc- 
ture of words. [See * 6.] 

In writing, the division of syllables shonld be as far as 
possible avoided. It is often inevitable in printing ; but in 
many lines divisions may be skilfully avoided. 

There are seven formal or practical rules for dividing 
syllables, and there are seven rules that may be called his- 
torical or etymological. The rules in the first series have 
reference to the various positions of vowels and consonants ; 
to the beginnings of syllables, and to pronunciation. 


I. Where other rules will allow it, let consonants begia 
syllables, ^x. : jpd-jper, sil-ver, se-cret, std-tion. 

II. A word of one syllable must not be divided. Ex. : 
eaves, stairs, states. 

In historical grammar a word that, in the course of time, has been 
reduced to one syllable, may be divided so as to show its original structure. 
Ex. : ' wor-ld ' = wer-old. 

III. Two vowels having distinct sounds may be divided. 
Ex. : huri-al, deni-al, di-al, soci-ety, sujperi-or, tri-al. 

There are about twenty digraphs, each consisting of two letters that 
must not be divided. These digraphs will be more distinctly noticed. 

IV. One consonant set between two vowels may be placed 
with the latter vowel, especially where the former is long. 
Ex. : ho-vine, cd-pahle, du-tiful, mo-tion, no-tice, pd-jper, to-hen. 

Y. Two consonants set between two vowels may, in many 
instances, be divided. Ex. : bajp-tize, hdr-rier, flit-ting, frdg- 
ment, fus-tian, gldd-den, glim-mer, mdn-ner, sec-tion, seg-ment, 
sil-ver, tab-let. 

Eut in tii-ble the mute and the liquid ar« too closely combined to be 



divided, and the same may be said of their positions in du-pU-cd-tiorit 
peo-ple, tri-fie, sd-cred, and sS-cret — words that must be noticed in the next 
rule. In the exam^^lefrdg-ment, the practical rule is in concord with the 
historical rule. The first syllable = the stem and the second = the suf5x. 
But this concord is not seen in sic-tion, of which the stem is sect and the 
suffix is ion. Here the historical rule is made subordinate to the seventh 
and last of the practical rules, and tion is treated as one syllable. There 
are consonants set in pairs, each pair having one sound, and these conso- 
nants must not be divided. They will be more distinctly noticed. 

YI. Where two or three consonants are set between two 
vowels, a labial, dental, or guttural may be placed with r or 1, 
to begin a syllable. Ex. : hub-hie, dou-hle, peo-ple^ tri-fley 
cdt-tle, mid-die, dSc-tri/ne, sd-cred, se-cret, strug-gle. 

In several words s, followed by a mute, begins a syllable, as in cpii- 
strdin, despond, destroy, respond, and restr&in. The prefix is abs in abS' 
cdnd, abs-tdvn, and dbs-tract. The prefix is di in distil. 

The seventh practical rule is the result of a common sibilant pronuncia- 
tion of dentals placed before the following unaccented tenninations — ion^ 
ial, ure, eous, ious, ience, ienf, and iate, as in the words appended:-^ 
aversion, pdr-tial, pleasure, crustd-ceous, grd-cibus, courd-geoue, prodi-giouSt 
pd-tience, pd-tient, and sd-tiate. After n the termination ieni makes but 
one syllable, and in sound = yent. 

YII. The division of terminations shown in the appended 
list of words is established by the common pronunciation of 
these and similar words. 

Each of the endings ion, ial, etc., is sounded as one syllable, but with 
respect to structure is counted as consisting of two syllables, and the 
syllable immediately preceding is therefore called the antepenultimate, 
{See § 4.] 

In every word given in the appended list the accent falls on the syllable 
immediately preceding the termination, \_8ee § 40.] 




















The seven formal or practical rules already given have reference to the 
positions of letters, to the beginning of syllables with consonants, and to 
some indications of pronunciation. The general purport of all the seven 
historical and etymological rules is shown in the next paragraph. 

To show the structure of words, their constituent parts — 
words, prefixes, derivative suffixes, and inflexions — are set 
aparf^by means of hyphens. \^See §§ 28-38, and the three 
V^abularies.] • 




Notes on the accentuation of compound -words are given in §§36 
and 40. 

I. In compounds of the first order two or more words are 
set apart. [See §§ 34, 35, and 36.] 







































Shake -speare 






II. In compounds of tlie second order tlie stems and the 

prefixes are set 

apart. [/See §^ 

37 and 38.] 


















di-stil _ 












fro- ward 







eon-cord j; 



sub- tract 

con-striiction '''' 




















III. In secondary derivatives the stems and the suffixes 
are set apart. [8ee §§ 28-32, and the three Vocabularies.] 

In some words one suffix follows another, as in 'fanat- 






















depart -ure 









































mar-in e 










































IV. The wc 

)rds placed tog 

ether in compound pronouns, 

and in the vag 

'ue nouns ('another,' etc.) often classed with 

pronouns, may 

be set apart, as 

in the following examples : — 























Compounds made with the aid of self, ever, and so-ever have an em- 
phatic force, but in modem usage they are partly treated as expletive and 
obsolete forms. 

Y. Compound particles are divided. 

Adverbs : — a-16ng 



Prepositions : — a cross 



Conjunctions ; 












there -after 









YI. The suffixes of gender in nouns, and of comparison 
in adjectives and adverbs, are set apart. 

author^ess (but ' enchan-tress'), h6ro-ine, spin-ster, testa-trix, rix-en. 
gr6at-er, gr^at-est, inf^r-ior, rath-er, s6on-er. 

YII. Yerbal inflexions and infinitive endings are set apart 
from the stems of verbs. 

call-est, call-edst, call-eth, call-ed. 

call-ing, kn6w-ing, writ-ing, 8p6k-en. 

civil-ize, fabric-ate, magni-fy, pun-ish. 

But doubled consonants, not belonging to the stem and coming before 



the ending of the imperfect participle, are separated, as m flit-ting, run- 
ning, stop-ping, and writ-ten. In c&U-ing andfall-ing the doubled conso- 
nants belong to the stems. 

In many instances the two methods of division are co- 
incident in their results, and thus obedience paid to a rule in 
the former series leads to concord with some rule given in the 
latter series. For example, in dividing the disguised com- 
pound pSr-poise, the fifth rule of the first series prescribes the 
same division that might be made with a reference to the 
original words jporcus-jpiscis. In dear-bought and in over-flow 
the divisions, made in accordance with the fifth and sixth 
rules of the first series, serve also to show the structure of the 
compounds. The general purport of tke second series of rules 
accords also with the results of several rules in the first series, 
with respect to divisions made in the words appended. \_See 
the three Vocabularies.] 
























































In many instances rules given for dividing stems from 
suffixes and prefixes do not accord with divisions made with 
respect to the positions and sounds of letters. \Bee Vocabu- 
lary II.] 

Accordingly it must be noticed that the fourth and fifth rules of the 
first series are often made subordinate to the general intention of the 
second series. Thus the formal rules here mentioned would allow such 
divisions as wri-ting and lear-ning, but etymology requires writ-ing and 
le&rn-ing, because ing is a sufl^. 

Ordinary notions of divisions can hardly fail to make distinct such 
well-known suffixes as Ttient, ness, tude, and ward; but with respect to 
several Latin suffixes beginning with vowels, there exists a considerable 
diversity of practice. 

In English verbs, dropping in their participles a final and silent e, the 



last consonant of the stem is often set with the sufiSx, as in the example 

In the appended examples, the fourth, fifth, and sixth miles of the first 
series are made subordinate to the second and third rules of the second 
series. In other words, some rules for division, having reference to the 
positions of letters, are here made subordinate, in order that prefixes and 
sufl^es may be set apart from the stems. 









































The tliird rule of the second series is, in nnmerons in- 
stances, made subordinate to the seventh rule of the first 
series — ^for example, in the words audd-cious, con-struc-tion, 
pd-tientj and sjpe-cial. \_8ee "Vocabulary II.] 

This seventh practical rule is the general result of a sibilant pronuncia- 
tion given to numerous words having the unaccented terminations already 
noticed. As one example of blending with the suffix a part of the stem, 
the word con-struct-ion may be noticed. The prefix is con ; the stem is 
struct ; and ion, the suffix, comes from oblique cases of Latin nouns (femi 
nine), having io in the nominative and ionis in the genitive. But the 
practical division of the word is con-struc-tion. The letter t is given to the 
last syllable, because a sibilant t here blends in pronunciation with the 
suffix and forms part of the third syllable, of which the whole sound is 
equivalent to shun. As one example of false division, the supposed case of 
cons-truct-ion may be given. Here the formation of the word is shown so 
far as to set apart the Latin suffix ion. But the stem is not truct, and the 
prefix is not cons. The division does not indicate the true pronunciation 
(con-struC'skun), but contradicts at once the seventh rule in the first series 
and the rule for setting apart prefixes. The seventh rule here named has 
reference to a numerous class of words, of which some specimens may be 

Final dan and sian are sibilant in jphysi-eian and Persian. The ter- 
minations tion and sion (the latter following a consonant) sound like shun, 
as in condi-tion, inven-tion, nd-tion, posi-tion, reld-tion, ascSn-sion, mis-sion, 
2>osses-swn, and provision. In the same position tial, sial, and cial are in 
sound nearly like shdl, as in mdr-tial, pdr-tial, controvirsial, commer-cial, 
and spe-cial. In the same position ure is mixed with a sibilant s in trea- 
sure, while iate and eate blend with sibilant t and s in sd-tiate ndu-seate. 
Fmaldent and tient sound like shent in dn-cient and pd-tient, and science 
is sibilant in conscience. Final tious, ccous, and cious sound like shiis in 
contSn-tious, senten-tious, cetd-ceous, crustd-ceous, predd-ceous, audd-cious, 
capd-cious, and grd-ciotis. Final geous and gious sound like jus in gor' 
geous and prodi-gious. 


To the rules already given some special observations may he added re- 
jecting certain coTnbinations of letters. 


The two letters that denote a diphthong must not be 

The two letters in a digraph denoting one vowel- sound or 
a diphthong-sound must not be separated. 

There are about twenty of the combinations called digraphs, in which 
each pair of letters has the sound of a simple vowel. Consequently the 
three rules having reference to consonants placed between vowels are not 
changed when a digraph is used instead of a simple vowel-sign. The 
sounds of some combined letters may be defined here, and certain excep- 
tional uses may be briefly noticed. Digraphs may be thus made distinct 
from vowels placed together but belonging to two syllables. 

ai and ay are often sounded as a in pale. Ex. : deldy, gain, pain, 
pay, way. ao in gaol has the sound of a in pale, au sounds as the broad 
a (in call) in caught and taught, but has, in the words aunt and taunt, the 
sound of the a in ah. In the affirmative word ay (as often sounded) the 
letters are equivalent to two vowels made distinct, as if printed in the form 
a-i. ea, sounded as e in Tnet, is heard in bread, breast, head, tread, and 
heavy; but the same digraph has the long sound of ee (as in feet) in heard, 
peace, flea, and release ; the sound of a (as in 'pale) in hear, break, great, 
pear, and tear ; and a shortened sound of ah is heard in heart and hearth. 
ei and ey in deign, obey, reign, and they = a in pale ; but in conceive, 
deceive, and receive = ee in feet, eo in people = ee in feet, and in yeoman 
= in note; but in Jeopardy the eo = e in met. ew (like eu in feud) is a 
diphthong in few and mew, but in crew and grew has a shortened sound of 
in move, and in sew = o in note. 

ia in carriage = i in tin, but in the final syllables of Christian and 
filial the i = the consonant y. ie in believe, field, piece, reprieve, wield, 
and yield = ee in feet ; but it is a diphthong ( = i in pine) in pie, tie, and 
vie, and in friend it sounds as e in Tnet. In the ordinal numerals twenti- 
eth, thirti-eth, etc., the two vowels i-e do not make a digraph, but have 
distinct sounds and may be divided, io in.fdshion has the short sound of 
n in cup. 

oa in boat, coat, coax, and oak sounds as o in note ; in broad and groat 
as a in call ; but in cupboard = u in cwp. oe in foe and sloe sounds as o 
in note. 

ua in gu&lity and quantity = wa, but in guard = a in ah. ue has the 
diphthong-sound (= u in tube) in cue and hue, but in the word true has a 
shortened soimd of o in move, ui in build, guilt, and guinea soimds as i 
in tin, but in guide is like the diphthong i in pine, no, when following q, 
sounds mostly like wo (in quoth) ; but in the word liquor the letters quo 
= ku. 

There are no triphthongs in English — i.e. there are no syllables in which 
three vowels unite their sounds, so as to produce the sound of a vowel or a 
diphthong. In the word awe the sound of the three letters = the sound of 
the broad a in call, eau in the French word beau = o in note, but eau in 
beauty = n in tube ; eou is not a triphthong, but has two distinct and dis- 
tributed sounds in the words houn-te-ous, hid-e-ous, and plen-te-ous. ewe 


has the diphthong-sound of u in ttibe, and eye has the diphthong-sound of i 
in pine. It will be remembered that, in sounding a diphthong, a move- 
ment or change of position is made in the organs of speech. By this fact a 
diphthong is made distinct from a simple vowel. 

ieu in lieu and adieu has the sound of u in tube, but in lieutenant the 
three letters ieu have the sound of e in met ; iew in view has the diph- 
thong-sound of u in tube. The vowels iou have two distinct and distributed 
sounds in the words gldri-ous, illustri-ous, ingeni-ous, insidi-ous, odi-ous, 
tSdi-otcs, and vdri-ous. 

owe has the sound of o in note. In the noun quoit the three letters uoi 
= the diphthong in boi/ ; but uoy in buot/ is sometimes pronounced so that 
bwoy might be the spelling denoting the sound of the word, and making it 
distinct from boi/. 

Two consonants denoting one sound must not be divided — 
for example, the dental ch in the verbal form teach-est, and in 
the compound tea-chest 

ch (inseparable) in some words of Greek origin = k, as in character ; 
but ch in the prefcs of arch-bishop, and in words of English and French 
origin, has a sharp dental and sibilant soimd, as in chest, sh has a flat 
dental and sibilant sound in shall, th (inseparable) has a sharp dental and 
lisping sound in think, and a flat sound of the same class in that. In 
the word diph-thong ph = f or p, and th sounds as in think. The sharp 
sound of th is heard also in the word d-theist, where a is the prefix. 

gh (inseparable) is silent in though, weigh, etc., but has, in laugh and 
other words, the sound of/, and in ghost and aghast = the guttural g in go. 
ph in phial and in several Greek compounds has the sound of f. The n 
followed by g has a guttural sound in long, sing, and young ; but the two 
letters are sometimes set apart in lon-ger and in youn-gest. The aim of 
this division is to indicate the two distinct sounds of the n and the g. This 
mode of division is not recommended ; it contradicts the sixth rule of the 
second series. 




Syntax means arrangement, or setting together in 
right order. 

In G-reek syn ((Ti/V) means together, and taxis {rd^is) means arrange- 

Syntax, as a part of Grrammar, treats in the first place 
of the right placing of words, phrases, clauses, and 
principal sentences, and secondly defines the right uses of 

A sentence is formed when words or expanded elements 
are so placed together that something is told. A sentence 
consisting of only two words may name an agent, and may 
tell or assert that an act takes place. The noun names 
the agent, and the verb expresses ^e act. The meaning 
of the noun may be made clearer by means of an adjective, 
and the use of the verb may be made more definite by 
means of an adverb. A transitive verb must be followed 
by an object, and the use of a vague verb must be made 
clear by some appended word or phrase. These are the 
chief elements of speech. 

In all languages words serve to express these general 
notions : — that persons and things, seen and unseen, 
exist ; that they dififer one from another in their qualities 
and their relations ; that acts, proceeding from agents, 
seen and unseen, take place; that acts differ from one 
another with respect to their own nature, with respect to 
interests, motives, and relations called subjective, and 
with respect to various relations of place, time, degree, 
causality, manner, and circumstances ; lastly, that certain 
acts are transitive and pass on from agents to objects, 
either so as to produce alterations in objects already 
existing, or so as to create objects. All these general 
notions are expressed by means of the parts of speech 
called nouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs. The noun 


may name either the agent or the object. The verb, con- 
nected with a subject, asserts that an act takes place, and 
that it proceeds from a certain agent. The noun, or name, 
is made more special by appending an adjective, and the 
verb is defined by an adverb. 

The elements of sentences may be expanded. Several 
words may be used instead of a noun, an adjective, or an 
adverb. These are changes of forms ; but all the chief or 
essential parts of sentences have been named. Particles 
called prepositions serve mostly as parts of expanded 
adverbs, and sometimes as parts of expanded adjectives. 
Conjunctions serve, in many places, to connect one 
sentence with another ; in other places, to link together 
the parts belonging to one sentence. Setting aside, for 
the present, the uses of these particles, the true elements 
of sentences are these : — nouns denoting subjects, adjec- 
tives, verbs, adverbs, and nouns denoting objects. The 
union of the verb with the agent — like the union of the 
transitive verb with its object — is close or immediate. 
But the adjective is connected with the noun, and the 
adverb, in its principal use, is connected with the verb. 
All the parts of the sentence are therefore united, and the 
centre of the union is the verb. 

This introductory analysis is a result of abstraction, -which consists 
mostly in setting aside many differences and treating mainly of likenesses. 
This process is allowed in grammar to an extent not known in any other 
science. For example, nouns are here divided into two classes, called 
♦ concrete ' and ' abstract.' With regard to certain nouns in the latter class, 
disputations of great importance have been continued from the days of the 
schoolmen down to the present time. In certain uses of adjectives we 
ascribe to things properties or qualities that have been defined by physical 
science ; but there are many other uses that have their origin only in the 
mind. A distinction of the same kind may be made with respect to many 
uses of adverbs. Again, the general notion of causality — constantly as- 
sumed in the uses of transitive verbs and in those of some adverbial clauses 
— has been called in question and has been made the starting-point of a 
long series of disputes. All these questions, and others pertaining to the 
study of language, may be noticed briefly by a grammarian, but only for the 
purpose of setting them aside. His subordinate task is, not to examine 
the sources of general or abstract and permanent notions, but to classify the 
forms in.which these notions are expressed. With regard to their validity, 
he can do nothing more than point to the fact that, in language, they have 
been constantly assumed. In language we constantly express such notions 
of substance, transition, and union as have no reference to any evidence 
afforded by inductive science. 



Analysis, in G-rammar, means the division of a sen- 
tence into the parts belonging to it. The intention is to 
make clear its elements and their relations. 

In the compound word * analysis ' the G-reek noun Aijcns is strengthened 
in meaning by the prefix avd, which generally means u^), but here is, in 
force, equivalent to the prefix thorough. 

The outlines of Analysis are given here, and special observations are 
appended to Ewles of Syntax given in §§ 63-64. Tabular Forms for the 
Analysis of Sentences are given in § 60. 


The elements of sentences, when each element has for 
its form of expression a single word, have mostly the 
names already noticed — nouns, adjectives, verbs, and 
adverbs. But their forms of expression may be expanded, 
while their uses remain unaltered. Accordingly, when 
their several uses rather than their forms are studied, the 
elements of sentences have the following more compre- 
hensive names ; — subjects, attributes, verbs, complements, 
adverbials, and objects. 

In writing of Syntax it is generally convenient to give examples in the 
affirmative form of the Indicative Mood. 

A sentence must contain a subject and a verb. Ex, : 
' He writes.' 

In this place, and in all the parts of Syntax, the verbal forms of the 
Infinitive Mood are not called verbs. They cannot assert or tell, and 
therefore cannot give union to other parts in a sentence. The verbal forms 
of the Infinitive Mood serve respectively as nouns and as adjectives. 

A Simple Sentence contains only one verb, and, when 
the verb is concrete and intransitive, or is used intransi- 
tively, the sentence may consist of only two words ; but a 
transitive verb is followed by an object. When the verb 
is in the Passive Voice, the subject denotes that which 
receives or endures the effect of an act. Ex, : ' Myron 
sleeps.' ' Myron made a statue.' ' The statue was placed 

The subject answers the question asked by placing who or what before 


the verb. The object answers the question asked by placing whom or what 
after a transitive verb. 

Ex. : ' Who sleeps here ? ' Myron. * Who made the statue ? ' Myron. 
* He made — what ? ' A statue. 

The adjunct belonging to the subject, to the object, or 
to any noun or substantive word, is called an Attribute, 
and the adjunct defining a verb is called an Adverbial. 
Ex, : ' Young Myron made a beautiful statue.' ' He 
placed there the statue.' 


The relations existing between the several parts of a 
sentence are of four kinds : — attributive, predicative, 
adverbial, and objective. The first exists between the 
attribute and any form serving as a noun, the second 
between the verb and the subject ; the third exists chiefly 
between the adverbial and the verb ; the fourth exists 
between the transitive verb and its object. 

This fourfold division of relations is practical, and may be readily 
understood. In accordance with a less analytical view of sentences, their 
relations of parts may be reduced to a threefold division. This may be 
made by taking together the verb and the adverbial, as making one definite 
assertion, but a threefold division should not be made by mingling with an 
adverbial an objective relation. The next example may suffice to mak& 
clear a fourfold division. 

* Young Myron placed there a beautiful statue.' 
The relation of young to Myron is attributive. 
The relation of beautiful to statue is attributive. 
The relation of placed to Myron is predicative. 
The relation of there to placed is adverbial. 
The relation of statue to placed is objective. 


In writing of Syntax these three words are often employed : — apposition, 
concord, and government. In apposition two names, or two forms of speech, 
are used instead of one, and the intention is to give clearness or emphasis 
to one part of a sentence, as in the following lines : — 

' The Eagle, he was lord above. 
And Kob was lord below.' 

Concord is a word denoting strictly a likeness or formal connexion of 
two words placed together in attributive or in predicative relation to each 
other. Thus, in the sentence mr bonus est, the adjective bdnOs, like the 


noun mr, is masculine, and has the nominative form of the singular, while 
the verb has the form of the third person singular. The adjective, there- 
fore, is here placed in concord with the noun, with respect to gender, 
number, and case, while in number and person the verb agrees with the 
noun. Thus concords are shown in the forms of highly inflected languages ; 
but "in English our so-called * concords ' of gender, number, person, and case 
are mostly understood, or are merely implied. These are the ' concords ' 
spoken of as existing in numerous instances where the relations of words 
are not indicated by inflexions. Of the sentence ' Junius wrote letters ' it 
may be said, ' the verb here agrees in number and 'person with the subject,^ 
though the same form of the verb might follow any one of the five pronouns 

* I,' ' he,' ' we,' you,' and * they.* 

In government the exact meaning or use of a word is made dependent on 
another word which, in English, mostly precedes, but, with regard to the 
possessive case, follows the governed word. Ex. : ' Csesar defended them, 
for they were the soldier's friends.' Here the verb governs the object them, 
and the possessive form soldier's is governed by the following noun. In 
English, governed nouns are made distinct merely by their meanings and 
their positions, in all instances, excepting the use of the possessive inflexion. 
The general meaning of government may be thus briefly given : — ^let any 
word, a, require that another word, b, shall have a certain use in a sentence ; 
then it is said that ' a governs b.' 

These observations have reference to uses or meanings. The names 

* genitive,' ' ablative,' etc., are properly names oi forms that do not exist in 
English. Their names are not clear enough to define uses. Respecting the 
use of a Greek or a Latin noun, placed in a sentence, nothing clear is told 
when it is said, ' this noun has the form of the genitive case singular' 


Each of the elements in a sentence may "be represented 
by a word ; the subject by a noun or a pronoun ; the 
attribute by an adjective ; the verb, when concrete, by a 
word like ' writes ; ' the adverbial by an adverb, and the 
object by a noun or a pronoun. But these elements may 
be expanded, and a phrase or a clause may be used instead 
of a single word. The for^n is changed, but the use. 
remains the same. 

In some instances the substitution of a phrase or a clause, instead of a 
word, is a mere matter of choice. Thus, in translating the Latin ablative 
casu, we may either write ' accidentally * or make use of the phrase * by 
chance.' So, instead of speaking of ' an honourable man,' we may say ' a 
man of honour,' and we may substitute a clause to take the places of both 
the adverb and the preposition in the sentence ' He contended successfully 
for the prize.' The expanded sentence will then be this : ' He contended 
so that he won the prize.' But in numerous instances the substitution of a 
phrase or a clause is a great improvement with respect to clearness, and in 
many cases no single word can be found to represent fairly the meaning of 
a phrase or a clause. In making translations, phrases and clauses must 



often change places. For example, when German or English is put into 
Greek, a participial phrase must often take the place of a clause. 

The Phrase may consist of two or more words, but 
does not include a verb. Ex, : ' They began building the 

The Clause includes a verb, and is a sentence that is 
made subordinate to another. Ex,: 'He said that you 
would come,'' 

The whole sentence containing a clause is called a 
Complex Sentence. 

Phrases and Clauses have the relations belonging to 
words called Nouns, Adjectives, and Adverbs. 

Phrases, considered with respect to their forms, or 
those parts of speech of which they consist, are called 
Infinitive, Participial, and Prepositional Phrases. 


To write 
To read 
To be called 

Writing notes 
Beading history 
Well described 

For your sake 
With care 
In that place 

With respect to their uses. Phrases are classified as in 
the following list of examples : — 


To persevere is your duty. 

Beading history is for me a plea- 

He ended well the work so weU 

The shadow of the nwwitain 
darkens the dale. 

He had learned by teaching. 

They walked over the plain. 





A Noun-Phrase may have one of the forms shown in 
the appended examples : — 

TJie Infinitive . . ^ To err is human.' 

^Infinitive + Noun . ' 1^ write history is a hard task,* 


Verbal Noun + Noun . Beading poetry is yoiir delight. 
Infinitive + Adjective . To he faithful is our duty. 

A Noun-Phrase may take the place of the Subject, or 
of the Object, or may be governed by a preposition. 

In the last instance the phrase is called dependent. [See § 49.] 

Subject . . . . ^ To err is human.' 
Object .... They began building the walls. 
Dependent . . . He was ill paid for writing the 

book. ^ 

The pronoun ' it,' placed before the verb, is often set in 
apposition with a Noun-Phrase. JEx. : ' It is to put the effect 
before the cause. It is to vindicate oppression,' etc. — 


A Clause includes a verb, and is therefore a sentence, 
but, for the sake of a convenient distinction, the name 
' clause ' is used to set apart a subordinate sentence, on one 
side, and, on the other, all the words belonging to a 
principal sentence. The whole sentence, containing both 
the principal assertion and the clause, is called a Complex 
Sentence, because its two parts are closely connected by 
subordination. In a Compound Sentence two or more 
sentences are placed together, but each has, apart from 
ellipsis, an independent meaning. \_See § 65.] 

A Noun may be expanded, so as to have the form of a 
Noun- Clause. Ex. : ' Caesar asserted that the Romans had 
been faithful.' 

Here the principal sentence ends with the word • asserted.' 

A Noun-Clause may take the place of the Subject 
{Ex, I.), or serve as the Object (Ex. II.), and may be 
placed in apposition with a Noun, or with a Pronoun. 
{Ex. III.) 

Ex. I. : That he is someti/mes impatient is not to be denied. 
„ II. : ' We knew that he wovJd come.' 
„ III, : ' The fact that he wrote the whole of the book is not 



An abstract Noun-Clause e?ipresses an a^^Fa fact, 
and is often introduced by 'thatJ The pronoun '-i^,' 
placed before the verb of the Principal Senterj.:( , is often 
set in apposition with an abstract Noun^Iause, as in the 
following examples : — > ' ' 

* It was expected tJiat he would come,^ 

* Jit was in 1780 that Johnson completed his ^^ Lives of the 
Foets.'^ ' — Macaulat. 

Many noun-claus^ afe introducedJbjr that ; ' but the conjunction is 
often omitted where the dause haal^e place of an object, Ex.: 'We 
kno-w [that] you were there.' In iiiairect questions, and in some other 
places, noun-clauses are introduced by interrogative words. Ex. : ' Tell us 
where you live' 

A concrete Noun-Clause may relate to persons, things, 
or places, and may be introduced by a relative pronoun, or 
by an adverb. 

^x. : ' "We know who you are and where you live.* 

When a Noun-Clause has the form of a direct quota- 
tion, the quotation-sign takes the place of ' that,^ 

Indirect : Caesar declared, that the Eomans had heen faithful. 
Direct : Caesar said, ' The Romans have leen faithfuV 

The names of clauses must be made known by uses, and are not to be 
guessed by means of such introductory words as ' that,' ' who,' and ' where,^ 
of which each may introduce either a clause serving as a noun, or another 
serving as an adjective, while ' that ' may introduce an adverbial-clause. 


An Adjective-Phrase may have one of the forms shown 
in the appended examples : — 

Infinitive Passive . . This is the work to he done. 
Infinitive Transitive + 
Noun . . . * Our wish to win the game led 

ns,' etc. 
Participle + Nomi . The tree hearing fruit was spared. 
Participle -f Adverh . The stream here flowing refreshes 

the grass. 
Preposition + Noun . He is a man of honour, 
Prep. + Adj. + Noun . The elms m f/m j9ar A; are stately. 
Prep. -^ Part. +Nov>n . Your plan of keeping a^comits is 


* Q 


An Adjective-Phrase may serve to define either a Sub- 
ject or an Object, or any substantive word. 

Ex. : The stream here flowing refreshes the grass of the 



An Adjective-Clause may serve to define either a Sub- 
ject or an Object, or any substantive word. 

Ex. : ' The river which rises on the moor flows through the 
* We have received the parcel that you sent.^ 

Eelative Pronouns and Adverbs serve as the con- 
nectives of Adjective-Clauses. When the connective is a 
Eelative, the Antecedent should be either a substantive 
word or a noun-phrase. 

Ex. : The debt that you have contracted must be paid. 

When a whole sentence is intended to take the place of the antecedent 
and ends with a noun, the appended adjective-clause, introduced by ' which,' 
may have an ambiguous reference — in other words, may seem to belong 
either to the sentence or to its last word. Ex. : ' He will not pay the debt, 
which is a disgrace' Is the debt itself or the refusal * a disgrace ' ? 
Examples of this class are numerous. 


A sentence may have the form of two words, but must, 
with respect to meaning, contain a subject, a predicate, and 
a copula (or bond), by which the former two parts are con- 
nected. When a verb is concrete, it contains both a 
predicate and a copula. The latter is, in some forms, 
denoted by an inflexion. 

Ex. : ' Myron sleep-S ' = * Myron is sleeping.' 

In the former sentence the verb is serves as the copula or bond, and 
in the other the letter s takes the place of is. But in several forms of the 
verb no bond appears. It is implied and is not formally expressed. In 
the sentence • The children sleep,' no letter is added to make the verb finite 
or limited — in other words, to show that it refers to the number and the 
person of the subject ' children.' The bond is here invisible, but its exist- 
ence in the mind is implied when we say, ' The Verb agrees with the Subject 
in number and person.' [See § 68.] 

A concrete verb, or verb of complete predication, contains two closely 


united parts. The verb has a union in itself, and draws all other words in 
the sentence into union. An Attribute, placed without a verb, names ^ 
quality, an act, or a state of existence, but does not assert that the quality, 
act, or state of being belongs to any subject. No union of two parts is 
made by putting together the two words ' light ' and ' shining ; ' for 
' shining ' is a merely attributive word, and tells nothing. But in the 
sentence ' Light shines ' we have a union that is threefold. The verb has in 
itself two parts — an attribute part and a form that connects the attribute 
with the subject. Accordingly there are seen in the sentence these three 
parts : — a narns, an attribute, and a bo7id, which in force is always equiva- 
lent to some form of the general verb ' to be.' Of these three parts the 
second is more or less deficient in a considerable number of verbs, which 
are therefore called * verbs of incomplete predication.' "Without the aid of 
complements, such verbs tell little or nothing. Nothing is told distinctly 
by saying • The air becomes,' but when the attributive word ' cold ' follows, we 
have an assertion. Here ' cold ' is the complement. When the attributive 
element is altogether wanting, or is more or less vague and deficient, au 
adjunct called ' a complement of the predicate,' or briefly ' a complement,' 
follows the verb. 

Such complements as follow the verb ' make ' have been vaguely called 
' factitive objects.' The following two sentences may be noticed : — 

A. ' The people made the statue an idol' 

B. ' The people idol-ized the statue.' 

If in A the word ' idol ' is an object, it follows that in B there is an, 
object in the verb. But the predicative verb in 5 = the vague verb + the 
complement in A, and in each of these two sentences the object is * statue.* 
The appended examples show how closely, in some instances, complements 
are connected with certain verbs. 

• The Nile maJces the y&Wej fertile ' =3 ' The '^'Aq fertilizes the valley.' 
' Sunshine Tnakes all things bright ' = ' Sunshine brightens all things.* 
' He poured the glass /wK ' = ' He filled the glass.' 

' They rnade the practice legal ' = ' They legalized the practice.* 

* They made the frontier strong ' = ' They fortified the frontier.' 

Here the verb made is vague, but becomes special or clear when the 
complement is added. In the Persian language, kardan and other verba 
are used in many places exactly as the verb made is used in these 


In many verbs the adjective or attributive part is so 
far vague or defective that adjuncts called Complements 
are required to make such verbs clear, or predicative. 

Both the Complement and the Adverbial serve to extend or define the 
assertions made by verbs, but the union of the Complement with the Verb 
is closer than that formed by the Verb with such Adverbials as, with 
respect to their uses, may be called free adjuncts. Their aid is not strictly 

With respect to its forms or its constituent parts, s^ 

Q 2 


Complement may consist of a word, a phrase, or a clause, 
as the appended examples show : — 

Noun . . . They made him king. 

Adjective . . . The water is deep. 
Phrase . . . He was in the town. 
Clause . . . We were told [that] the house 

was let. 

The abstract verb ' be ' always requires a complement. 

The chief exception to this rule is found in Hebbews xi. 6. 

Several participles, serving as complements, are so far 
vague that they must be followed by other adjuncts. 

Ex. : * We are all disposed to give advice.^ 

Here the first complement ' disposed ' is so far vague that it wants some 
adjunct like the phrase ' to give advice.' 

Complements are often required by verbs of the fol- 
lowing classes : — 

The auxiliary verbs 'may,' 'can,' 'let,' 'must,' 'have,' 
' shall," wHl.' [J7aj. L] 

Verbs like ' become,' ' continue,' ' grow,' ' remain,' ' sub- 
sist.' [Ex. II.] 

Verbs like ' appear ' and ' seem.' [Ex. III.] 
Verbs like 'belong,' 'lie' (= to be situate), 'live' (= 
dwell), ' live ' (= gain means of living). [Ex. IV.] 

Verbs Hke 'consider,' 'deem,' 'esteem,' 'regard,' 'take.' 
[Ex. v.] 

Verbs like ' make ' and ' render.' [Ex. VI.] 
Verbs like ' advise,' 'compel,' 'reduce.' [Ex. VII.] 
The verbs ' weigh ' and ' measure.' [Ex. VIII.] 
Many verbs when employed in the Passive Voice. [Ex, 

Ex. I. : ' He may come.' * We can read.' ' Let us go.' 
Ex. II. : 'It becomes dark.' ' He grows strong.' ' It 

remains true.' 
Ex. III. : ' It appears clear.' ' It seems useless.' 
Ex. IV. : ' The source lies hidden.' ' They dwell in that 
, ' Bath is situate on the Avon.' ' The people live 
hy fishing.' 
Ex, V. I ' While othel*s speak of his folly, he takes it/or 
granted that he is wise.' ' We called him 


brave, and held his virtue in high estimation,* 
*I took you /or a friend.' * I cannot regard 
a flatterer as a friend.' 

Ex. VI. : ' He made the frontier safe.' ' They made him 

Ex. VII. : * They urged me to go on.' * Compel them to 
come in ! ' 

Ex. VIII. : * The block weighs a ton.' ' The wheel mea- 
sures nine feet round.' 

Ex. IX. : ^We were advised to go on.' ' Socrates was ^Qm 
cused of impiety.' ' He was doomed ^o <^ze.' 

The verb ' make ' — in this respect like some other 
verbs — has two uses. In the first it retains its primitive 
meaning, and must have an object, but requires no com- 
plement. In the second use an adjunct is wanted to give 
to the verb a second and complete meaning. Other verbs 
are used so that they are sometimes complete and at 
other times are incomplete in their predication. 

In the appended examples complements are set in Italic. 

Complete : — ' He made a statue.' ' The mill-stream turns 
the wheel.' 'He firmly held the standard.' 'He let the 
farm.' ' They found the money.' 

Incomplete : — ' They made the statue a7i idol.' * During 
his imprisonment his hair turned gray.' ' Nothing but truth 
will last and hold out to the end.' * He let the house fall to 
ruin.' * They found him guilty.' [/See § 46.] 

Complements and Adverbials compared. 

The general distinction to be made between a Complement and an 
Adverbial is this : the latter may be used, but the former must be used. 
There are, however, several degrees of compactness in the union that com- 
plements may have with the defective predicates contained in some verbs. 
In certain cases, the removal of the complement would leave a vague 
assertion; in others it would leave a false assertion. It would be useless 
to _ attempt drawing a hard and precise line between the two classes of 
adjuncts by which the meanings of verbs are extended or made more 
definite. Boundary lines are sometimes but faintly drawn in language, as 
in nature. Analysis, like science of every kind, has its own limits. 


An Adverbial-Phrase may have one of the forms shown 
in the appended examples : — 


Infinitive . . . * They came to scoff.* 
Infinitive + Noun . . ' He went to see the games.* 
Adjective + Noun . . ' They visit us every day.' 
Preposition + Noun . ' They burned the wood to char' 

Frep. + Adj. + Noun . ' Crusoe lived on an island.* 

It is convenient to give the name Adverbials to all phrases and clauses 
that have the use of Adverbs. 

Adverbials define assertions, and may refer to the 
place, the time, the extent or degree, the cause, the pur- 
pose, the manner, the means, or to the circumstances of an 
action. Other uses of Adverbials are too numerous to be 
analysed in this place. [_See §§47 and 57.] 

With respect to the notions that they express, and to the positions they 
may hold in sentences, adverbials — taking together their simple and theii 
expanded forms — are so greatly diversified, that a list like the appended 
can give only a few of their most frequently recurring forms. \^8ee §§ 57 
and 58.] 

Ad/verhials of Place answer the questions : — * Where ? * 

* Whence?' 'Whither?' < How far?' * In what course ? ' 
lEx. I.] 

Adverbials of Time answer the questions : — ' When ? ' 

* How long ? ' ' How often ? ' [Ex. II.] 

Adverbials of Degree extend and limit assertions, [JE7aj. 


Adverbials of Causality indicate reasons, motives, and pur- 
poses. \_IJx. IV.] 

Adverbials of Manner here include such as denote means 
and circumstances. lEx. Y.] 

Adverbials of Beference connect sentences and introduce 
topics. [Ex. YI.] 

Adverbials of Contrast introduce contrasted and contro- 
versial assertions. \_Ex. YII.] 

Adverbials of Substitution have the meaning denoted by 

* instead of.' [^a;. YIIL] 

Bx. I. : * Where ?' . . . ' He lives in Borne.* 

' Whence ? ' . 

'How far?* 

* In what course ? 

'He sailed from the is- 

' He went to the camp.* 

' They scattered flowers 
aU along the way.* 

' The line is drawn from 
8.E. to N.W. 



Ex.U.: 'When?* , 
* How long ? ' 

'How often?' 
Ex, III. : Extent 


Ex. rV. : Reason 



Ex, V. : Marnier 


Ex. VI. : Reference . 
Ex. Vn. : Contrast . 

Ex. VIII. : Substitution 

* He will return at noon.' 
'He was absent two 


* He comes every day.* 

* So fa/r your words are 


* At this degree of cold^ 

still water freezes.' 

* He failed for want of 

*For envy they accused 

*We used all our 

strength to lift it.* 
*He acted in a careless 


* Caves have beenformed 

by streamlets.* 

* The knot was cut urith 

a sword.* 

* As for moneys neglect 

it not.' 

* On the contrary f 1 

maintain the truth,' 

* He returned evil for 

good* (= instead of 

Various Adverbial-Phrases. 

There are many adverbials that may be collected under such general 
names as * connecting and introductory phrases,' • phrases of reference/ and 
'phrases of contrast.' The following are examples: — 'As for money, 
neglect it not.' — Iz. Walton. * As to that, I very seldom go,' etc. — Db Foe. 
' For my own part, I could not but be pleased to see the knight,' etc. — 
Addison. • It is therefore, upon the whole, a duty which every man owes to 
his country.' — ^Biackstone. ' Now, as touching this third ordinance, I will 
deal honestly with you.' — Aenold. « On the contrary. Autumn is gloomy.* 
— STILLINGFI.EET. < Becreatlou is intended to the mind as whetting is to the 
scythe.' — ^Bp. Haix, 

Of similar forms of expression no exhaustive analysis can be given, fbr 
adverbials are as numerous as the relations of actions to antecedents, cir- 
cumstances, and results. But several phrases that in literature often 
occur may be here noticed, including one that, in conversation, is old and 
almost obsolete : — ' by dint of argument ' (by force) ; ' bt/ rneans of persua- 
sion ;' ' by reason of sin ; ' • by virttce of the law ;* *by way of compensa 
dpn;' 'for the sake of -pea^e ;' 'in behalf of the -poot;' *in consequence of 


delay ; ' 'in lieu of that ' (instead) ; * instead of that ; ' * it was along of yon ' 
{old) ; ' it "was on account of that ; ' ' it was owing to that ; ' ' on this side 
the grave ; ' ' with regard to the law.' Of some phrases the use is to modify 
or to subdue the general tone of an assertion, as in the examples ' at least 
I would say ; ' 'for my own fart I would say,' etc. 

Connexions of Phrases. -> 

A sentence is called simple because it contains only one verb, and not 
because it is short. For by means of inserted phrases a simple sentence 
may be made long. 

One phrase may be appended to a word in another phrase, as the phrase 
* of the Nile ' is appended to the noun * overflow ' in the following ex- 
ample : — * The land is made fertile by the overflow of tTie Nile.' Again, to 
some word in the second phrase a third phrase may be attached, ami thus 
the connexion of a subordinate part with one of the chief parts in a sentence 
may be made more and more remote. Such a stringing together of phrases 
— one depending upon another — is not recommended. Ex. : * This enter- 
prize was well adapted [I] to bring [2] into vigorous exercise [3] habits of 
endurance and perseverance [4] acquired in the course [5] of long and weari- 
some journeys [6] through many lonely regions [7]. This sentence, in- 
cluding only one verb, contains seven phrases. The phrase * well adapted ' 
serves as a complement. 

Adverbial-Clauses are in many instances clearer than 
Phrases in denoting relations of place, time, degree, 
causality, and manner. 

The appended list of examples may serve to indicate several of the chief 
notions to which Adverbial-Clauses refer. But no concise account can 
fairly represent the great variety of adverbial phrases and clauses. These, 
with respect to their manifold uses, are, of all the elements in complex 
sentences, by far the most versatile. It might be added — with respect to 
English literature — that the variety of adverbials is such as almost to 
defy the powers of analysis. 

Place . . . . ' He found the book where he left 

Motion . . . . ' He will go wherever Duty may 

call Mm.' 
Time . . . . ' We began our work when the 

sun was rising,^ 
Oomjpa/rison . . . ' He likes you better than \he 

Tikes'] me.' 
Limitation . . . ' As long as this warmth remains j 

water flows.* 
Proportion . . . ^ As 1 is to x, so is x to 1 — ^. 

' The more we learn, the less we 

think of our learning.' 

Here the repetition of 'the' = 'eo . , . . eo,' instead of * quo . , . . eo* 



2Ianner . 
A Cause 
A Reason 
A Purpose 
A Result 
A Concession. 
A Condition . 

He went away so that his de- 
parture was not noticed.* 

He looks as if he did not know 


' While others turned traitors, 
[Abdiel] was true.* 

' The river is swollen, because so 
much rain has fallen.* 

' As I have not studied the ques- 
tion, I shall give no answer.' 

' The guide will go forward, thai 
he may show us the way* 

' You have spoken so well, that I 
must thank you.* 

' Though you cannot understand it, 
you must believe it.' 

' If he had money, he would give 

Such adverbial-clauses as express conditions and suppositions are rightly 
called subjective, hut are more frequently called * subjunctive.' In the em- 
ployment of such phrases, some careful writers make alterations in their 
uses of verbal inflexions, but many writers neglect these changes. 
[See IBS.-] 

Examples of Various Phrases and Ciauses. 

In the examples appended, Phrases and Clauses are printed in Italic. It 
Tnay be noticed here that there are sentences in which adverbials are not made 
clearly distiTict from adjective-phrases. In numerous instances the words 
belonging to one clause are separated by the insertion of a clause. Ex. : ' He 
represented to them that the event (which they and he had long wished for) 
was approaching.* 

The adjective-clause, here set within curves, separates a noun and a verb 
belonging to the noun-clause, which is introduced by the conjunction * that* 
It should be observed that here and there * that ' or 'which,* the connectives of 
adjective-clauses, are omitted, in prose as well as in verse. 

Noun-Phrases. — It teaches us how to live. ' Learn to do well.' ' To err 
is human.' To forgive is divine. To speak sincerely is our duty. Would 
you learn to speak correctly ? Writing exercises is one way of learning. 

Noun-Clauses.—' Re first observed that those writings were of several 
kinds* — RoscoB. ' He represented to them that the event which they and 
he had long wished for was approaching.' — Hume. He tells me that you 
cannot swim. It is a fact that he has won the prize. It is not true that 
they have been conquered. ' It was generally thought that no man could, 
resist such force of argument* ' It was not to be supposed that juries would 
find such men guilty of treason.' — Burnet. It will be foimd true that 
fiatterers are traitors. ' The writer here asserts that every finite cause must 
be an effect. • We cannot say how long we shall remain here* * Who 
doubts, for a moment, that it is base to speak falsely 1 * ' Tell us where you 


In the last example ' where ' introduces a noun-clause. This clause 
denotes an iinknown place, and serves as the object following the transitive 
verb ' tell.' 

Adjective-Phrases. — 'Cyrus drove back the soldiers stationed near the 
king.' Here is the work to he done. That left an impression not easily 
forgotten. These hills contain mines of copper and iron. These men, 
forgetting time, were wandering on the shore. 'The shadow of the 
mountain darkens the dale.' They lived in the dale of the Dove. This 
plan of classifying books is practical. Thus ends the work so well begun. 

Adjective-Claiises. — 'All those hundreds of millions that were slain in 
the Roman wars shall appear.' — Jee^ Tayloe. He then returned to the 
place whence he came. Here is the man that will tell us the story. ' Is . 
there any writer whose style should be closely imitated ? ' ' There are some 
men who might laugh at this.' The stream which rises on the hill flows 
through the valley. These are the heights whence our foes descended. 
' This is the way that will he found the shortest.' ' We have received the 
books you sent.' ' Where lies the land to which yon ship must goV — 


' Ye winds, that have made me your sport. 
Convey to this desolate shore 
Some cordial, endearing report 
Of a land / must visit no more ! ' — Cowpee. 

Complements. — ' The people, who called him their hero, took him for a 
leader, and soon made him king.' ' He made the frontier strong, and of all 
the land he let no part/aZ^ into decay! ' They made the serpent an idol.' 
[In these sentences the verbs * called,' * took,' * made,' and ' let,' if they 
were left without their complements, would have false meanings.] 

Adverbial-Phrases. — 'America, on account of its vast extent, has all 
varieties of climate.' At this degree of cold, still water freezes. Before 
seven o'clock our work will be done. He gave that advice /or your welfare. 
'Loud cries arose out of the deep forest, but silence now and then followed 
those noises.' Near the fountain a pleasure-house was built. ' The more 
they multiply the more friends you will have.' — Btjeke. * The prisoners 
must be tried by a jury.' This stream has its source on the mx>or. We 
were to soTne extent successful. Willows are planted along the river-side. 

Adverbial- Clauses. — As the heat increases, the mercury is expanded. 
' Could Time restore the hours, I would not call them back.' Do you expect 
to win my confidence, when you flatter me ? ' Your calculation is correct as 
far as it goes.' 1 am as old as you are. [The adverbial-clause is con- 
tracted.] ' If Junius lives, you shall often be reminded of it.' * If the show 
of anything he good for anything, I am sure that sincerity is better.' — 
TiLiiOTSOJsr. ' The brilliance of the diamond is not more remarkable than 
its hardness.' [The adverbial-clause is contracted.] The higher we climb, 
the colder it becomes. * When passion is loudly speaking, the voice of 
reason is not heard.' ' JVhen these facts were made known, a great pertur- 
bation took place in the army.' 


A Compound Sentence is made by placing together 
at least two independent sentences, connected by one of 
the conjunctions called co-ordinative. \_See § 14.] 


A Compound Sentence, when not contracted by ellipsis, 
contains at least two verbs. Ex, : ' The sun shines and 
the rainbow o/p'pears. 

In a Complex Sentence the connection is closer than that existing be- 
tween the members of a Compound Sentence. In the former the clause is 
made subservient to the chief assertion ; but in the latter the annexed 
sentence retains individuality or independence. 

Ellipsis here means the omission of a word, or of several words, 
belonging to each of two or more sentences placed in co-ordination. In the 
following example the words that might be repeated are set within 
brackets : — * "We saw there no wide landscape, but [we saw] a place of 
sheltered quiet.' [iSeg §66.] 

A sentence may be compound and complex. Of the 
two sentences joined by co-ordination, one or both may be 
complex. Both are complex in the appended example : — 

Ex. : * He is the last man that finds himself to be found 
out ; and whilst he takes it for granted that he makes fools 
of others, he renders himself ridiculous.' — Tillotson. 

A Simple Sentence contains but one verb. A Complex Sentence may- 
contain several verbs, but of these only one makes the assertion of the 
Principal Sentence ; the others are subordinate, or belong to Clauses. In 
the preceding example of a compound and complex sentence there are five 
verbs — ' is,' ' finds,' ' takes,' ' makes,' and ' renders.' Of these verbs two — 
*is' and * renders' — belong respectively to the two principal sentences. 
The verb ' finds ' is placed in an adjective-clause ; * takes * belongs to an 
adverbial-clause, and ' makes ' belongs to a noun-clause. An analysis of 
the whole sentence is appended. It will be noticed that and connects the 
two chief members of the Compound Sentence. The former includes one 
clause ; the latter has two clauses. 

Analysis of a Compound and Complex Sentence. 

He is the last man 

that finds himself to be found out 

[and] whilst he takes it for granted 

that he makes fools of others , . 
he renders himself ridiculous , . 

FiEST Principal Sentence. 
f Adjective- Clause, belonging 
\ to the noun 'man.' 

(Adverbial- Clause relating to 
the verb + complement 
' renders ' . . .' ridiculous.' 
(Noun- Clause, in apposition 
I with it. 
Second Principal Sentence. 

In order to show at once the uses of both phrases and clauses. Tabular 
Forms for the Analysis of Sentences are sometimes arranged in Jive columns. 
[See ^60.] 

Sentences, of which the general structure has been described, may be 
greatly diversified by inversions of order, and by ellipses or omissions of 
words. By these means analysis is here and there made rather difficult. 


Of every element — word, phrase, or clause — three questions may be 
asked : — Is this form of expression English ? Is the use here made of it 
"warranted ? Is it so 'placed that its use may be readily understood ? To 
these three questions all the rules of Syntax have reference. 


A Period, containing several principal sentences, may be 
made symmetrical, with regard to the extension and the con- 
struction of the two chief members into which it divides itself, 
as in the appended example : — 

* Truth is always consistent with itself, and needs nothing to help it 
out ; it is always near at hand, and sits upon our lips, and is ready to drop 
out before we are aware ; || whereas a lie is troublesome, and sets a man's 
invention upon the rack, and one trick needs a great many more to help it 

out.' TiLLOTSON. 

Here the sign |1 marks the place -where the whole period divides itself 
into two main parts, which are set in contrast with each other. 

The word * period ' is often more freely employed, so as to denote 
generally any complete sentence, or any series of sentences closing with a 
full stop. In some following paragraphs, the term ' period ' denotes here 
and there a compound sentence of which each part is complex. 

A Paragraph consists of a series of sentences belonging to 
one division of a chapter or section. When constructed in an 
artistic style, the paragraph has a beginning, a middle, and an 
end. In one form of the paragraph the theme, introduced in 
the opening, is expanded in the middle, and at the end is 
reduced to the form of a summary. 


In writing Latin — especially in historical writing — the 
general structure of periods must first be studied ; and when 
this is done, a second task remains: words, treated as 
parts of principal sentences, or of phrases and clauses, 
must have not only their right order, but also their proper 
inflexions. Here are two tasks, and in Latin each is 
difficult. In writing English, the former is considerable ; 
the latter is, comparatively speaking, nothing. Through- 
out the history of the language its two main tendencies 
have been these : to diminish the value of inflexions, and 
proportionately to make more and more important the 
order of words, principal sentences, phrases, and clauses. 
Our general syntax requires study ; but our special syntax 
is easy. 



Our tongue is for the most part non-inflected. It has endings to make 
nouns plural, but many words plural in meaning have no sign to show it. 
The possessive sign has uses very closely restricted. Excepting always the 
place of the verb itself, a word in ing may take the place of any element ; 
may serve as a subject or as an attribute, as a complement or as an 
adverbial, or lastly as an object. In pronouns distinct forms sometimes 
agree with their distinct uses. For example, these forms serve as sub- 
jects: — /, thou, he, she, we, they, and who. But the following may ba 
either subjects or governed words : — you (or ye), it, this, that, these, and 
those. The following may be governed by a verb or by a preposition : — 7ne, 
thee, tis, him, her, them, whom. The pronouns me, us, him, her, and them 
are often used as Dative cases are used in Latin. But each has also th& 
uses of the Accusative in Latin. Ex, : ' The teacher praised him and gave 
him a book.* Some adjectives and a few adverbs have changes to show 
degrees in comparison. Eight forms are, in etymology, treated as belonging 
to the verb write, and no English verb can have more. Two {writing and 
written) are verbal forms, not verbs ; three (writest, writeth, and wrotest) 
are practically obsolete ; three only {write, writes, and wrote) are commonly 
used as verbs. The poverty of our English verbs may be shown by a 
contrast : — 






I rule 


I ruled 


hou rulest (obs.) 


thou ruledst (obs.), 


he rules 


he ruled 


we ) 




you y rule 


you • ruled 


they J 



* The verb agrees in number and person with the subject^ In Latin thi* 
asserted concord is formal ; in other words, it is shown by changes of form. 
In English the assertion means only this : in its form the verb mv^t not 
contradict either the nimiber or the person of the subject, and where a 
proper form of showing concord exists, that form must be employed. 
Another contrast of Latin and English is seen in the following sen- 
tences : — 

Latin. — * Arbores serit agricola, quarum aspiciet baccam ipse 

English. — * The husbandman plants trees of which he will never see the 

The Latin has five, but the English has only two, inflected words ; the 
order is in the Latin variable, but it is hardly variable in good English 
prose. Of far greater difierences some fair examples ought to be seen in a 
Latin translation of the following sentences : — 

* The present constitution of our country is to the constitution under 
which she flourished, five hundred years ago, what the tree is to the sapling, 
what the man is to the boy. The alteration has been great. Yet there 
never was a moment at which the chief part of what existed was not old. 
— Macaulay, History of England, vol. i. p. 25, 3rd edit. 

The words here inflected are eleven in fifty-four. In terse Latin they 
would have nearly the ratio of ten to twenty-two. 

It is instructive to compare with the concise style of 
^CAULAT the comprehensive style of Hookee, who, in the 


course of the time 1585-1600, wrote the earliest of all metho- 
dical treatises in English prose. Since his day the fact that 
onrs is mainly a non-inflected tongue has led us more and 
more to care for simplicity in the structure of periods. The 
following is one of Hookee's more intricate passages. The 
words in Italic are not marked as errors, but should be 
noticed as closely connected with his style : — 

'The stateliness of houses, the goodliness of trees, -when we behold 
them, delighteth the eye; but that foundation which heareth up the one, 
that root which ministereth unto the other nourishment and life, is in the 
earth concealed ; and if there be at any time occasion to search into it, such 
labour is then more necessary than pleasant, both to them which undertake 
it, and for the lookers-on. In like manner the use and benefit of good laws 
[the object enlarged and set before the verb] ; all that live under them may 
enjoy with delight and comfort, albeit the grounds and first original causes 
from whence they have sprung be unknown, as to the greatest part of men 
they are. But when they who withdraw their obedience pretend that the 
laws which they should obey are corrupt and vicious, for better examination 
of their quality, it behoveth [ = the Latin oportef] the very foundation and 
root, the highest well-spring and fountain of them, to be discovered. 
Which [ = and this'] because we are not oftentimes accustomed to do, when 
we do it, the pains we take are more needful a great deal than acceptable ; 
and the matters which we handle seem, by reason of newness (till the 
mind grow better acquainted with them), dark, intricate, and unfamiliar.' — 
Of the Laws of Ecclesiastical Polity, book i. 

When considered with respect to the date of the work and 
the diflBculties of the subject, the writer's style has such a 
union of force and clearness as may be justly called marvel- 
lous. In his best passages he does in English that which, 
with practice, may be more correctly done in Latin. He often 
brings together into their own logical union, and gives in one 
period, several important thoughts, of which one idea is the 
source ; or in one comprehensive paragraph he gives the out- 
line and general design of a treatise. As a contrast the fol- 
lowing passage may be noticed : — 

' In such a state of society as that which existed all over Europe during 
the Middle Ages, it was not from the king, but from the nobles that there 
was danger. Very slight checks sufficed to keep the sovereign in order. 
His means of corruption and intimidation were scanty. He had little 
money, little patronage ; no military establishment. His armies resembled 
juries. They were drafted out of the mass of the people ; they soon re- 
turned to it again ; and the character which was habitual prevailed over 
that which was occasional. ... At home the soldier learned how to value 
his rights ; abroad, how to defend them. . . . Such a military force as this 
was a far stronger restraint on the regal power than any legislative 
assembly. Resistance to an established government, in modern times so 
difficult and perilous an enterprise, was in the fourteenth and fifteenth 
centuries the simplest and easiest matter in the world. Indeed, it was far 
too simple and easy.' — Macatjlay, Edinburgh Beview, vol, xlviii. p. 96. 


The difference of the two passages here quoted belongs 
essentially to two main principles of construction, and these 
may be set in contrast and called Latin and English. Of 
many careless writers — old and modem — ^it is truly said, * they 
have no style ; ' but the chief methods employed by our classic 
authors, in the structure of periods, are these two, Latin and 
English ; and of all the authors whose method is to a consider- 
able extent Latin, one of the best — perhaps the best — is 
Hooker. In his great work, the sentences and periods that 
may be especially called ' clear ' and * easy ' are numerous, 
and it is only with reference to his longer and more intricate 
periods that his method may be called Latin. His prose con- 
sists on the whole of far better English than that of Milton's 
prose writings. On the other hand, there are found, in the 
writings of Macaulat, some periods considerably extended; 
but there are found also many sentences that, as regards 
their structure, may be called extremely English. The inter- 
mediate and conciliatory style of Addison is noticed in another 
place. Here it is, in the first place, important to make clear 
the difference of these two methods : Latin and English. In 
doing this, repetitions of words will be prevented by substi- 
tuting for them the following signs, which here may generally 
denote either simple or expanded forms of expression : — 





The subject . 


The complement . 


The attxibute 

. a 

The adverbial 


The verb 


The object 

In Latin — chiefly in the historical style — a long period 
may be very comprehensive and yet may be clear. The main 
reason is this : the forms of words, phrases, and clauses here 
show clearly their several uses. For example, the adverbial- 
phrase, for the most part, looks like an adverbial. And other 
subordinate parts have forms that make them distinct from 
words belonging to a principal sentence. Accordingly, an 
elaborate Latin period may contain, beside assertions of some 
main facts, several references to times, or to places, or to cir- 
cumstances, and these collateral parts may be so many that 
three or more periods would be required to give them all 
clearly in English. The principal subject of a Latin period 
may be placed at a considerable distance from the verb making 
the chief assertion, and yet, when the period is ended, its 
meaning may be made perfectly clear. The principal subject 
may come first, and the chief verb may be set last. Between 
th^m several adverbial adjunct^ may be set, so as to occupy 


the middle parts of the period, and next to these may come 
the object, or, in some instances, a complement or a predicate 
introducing the verb. This order may be here briefly indi- 
cated by means of the following signs : — 

S, Z, Z, 0, C, V. 

If English words might be arranged in a Latin order, such 
a series of words as the following might appear : — 

' The prince [s], when those youths approaching and saluting him he 
saw [x ; a clause], instantly summoning a council [x], himself [o] th& 
victor [c] declared [v].* 

These inversions of the order usually seen in English 
sentences are less remarkable than the number and the clear- 
ness of such subordinate parts as in Latin may be connected 
with a principal sentence, and may serve to form a terse or 
synthetic sentence. To put into English one Latin sentence, 
it must sometimes be divided, so as to form two or three 
distinct propositions. That a certain well-known author — a 
Parisian — has, during some years of the present reign, resided 
mostly in London; that he has lately given, in a series of 
letters addressed to a friend, certain sketches of our English 
institutions and manners, and that these letters are written 
with remarkable grace and fluency : all these facts might in 
Latin be given in one sentence — a sentence including only one 
verb, instead of the three here employed. 

In English the forms of words, phrases, and clauses do 
not serve to any great extent to indicate their uses. The 
noun, for example, forming one part of an adverbial-phrase 
and governed by a preposition, or by a participle, has no 
change of form. Accordingly, our periods are for the most 
part made shorter than Latin periods, and substitutes for 
certain uses of inflexions are supplied by simplicity of struc- 
ture, and by the order of words, phrases, and clauses. On a 
clear understanding of these facts certain rules of English 
composition have been founded, and numerous examples of 
strict obedience to those rules may be readily found in the 
pages of Macaulay. On the other hand. Hooker is named as 
one of the best of all the writers who have endeavoured to do 
in English that which may be more correctly done in Latin. 

In several other respects (of which little or nothing can 
here be said) these two writers differ very widely. A com- 
prehensive union is the earlier writer's chief aim ; the latter 
dissects subjects, and displays great skill in various specimens 
of minute analysis. Of the former author the general tone is- 



conciliatory ; the latter gives emphasis to his own assertions, 
and often makes them still clearer by means of sharply- 
defined antitheses. But, with regard to their two styles, the 
chief difference is this : the old author remembers too well 
some constructions rightly called Latin ; the modem historian 
studies brevity and good order, and remembers, almost too 
well, that he has to write in a language that for the most part 
may be called non-inflected. Hence he never attempts the 
task of giving in four periods all that Hookee endeavours to 
say in the passage already quoted. The older author would 
here give expression to four most important ideas respecting 
several relations of abstract theory to practical affairs. An 
essay — nay, a treatise — ^is required to set forth clearly all the 
meaning of that quoted paragraph. That theory, in its right 
place, is useful ; that many, who can fairly appreciate facts, 
find theory uninviting and difficult ; that institutions blamed 
for their defects may still be well-founded, and on the whole 
may be very beneficial ; and that this truth may be demon- 
strated — these are the main ideas given, with collateral 
observations and illustrations, and all arranged so as to be 
included within the compass of four periods. On the other 
hand, the later writer uses not less than ten full stops, all set 
within the compass of about fourteen lines. Of these full stops, 
the first shows the end of two curt assertions, both qualified 
by one clause. Then another fact is asserted, and for these 
three facts certain causes are briefly assigned in the next three 
periods. Of the cause last named — the want of a standing 
army — some details are almost as briefly supplied, and the 
logical conclusion of the whole is then given in three short 
sentences. Throughout the whole the author does not forget 
for a moment the fact that he is writing a language in which 
order and simplicity are the chief sources of clearness. He is 
not one of those orators who, in a breath, can speak of two or 
three perfectly distinct matters. In every sentence of the 
passage last quoted the subject is first of all made clear. 

In doing this, one of the writer's more frequent uses is to employ a 
noun-phrase, or a noun-clause, made clear by means of the introductory 
pronoun it. His repetitions of this distinctive form are here and there 
tiresome, but it is clear that the writer knew well what he was doing. 
Apart from it (in apposition), the noun-phrases and noun-clatcses would 
mostly begin with to or with that — two words having versatile uses — and 
the writer's first wish was to make clear the subject of every sentence. 
Accordingly, when the form of the subject is expanded, the pronoun comes 
first, and shows us that the following phrase or clatise is intended here to 

R • 


serve instead of a noun. From numerous examples of carefulness on this 
point the following may be selected : — 

Phrases. — ' It is amusing to think over the history of most of the publi- 
cations that have had a run during the last few years.' ' It is to accuse the 
mouth of the stream of poisoning the source.' 'It would be difiScult to 
name a book which exhibits more kindness, fairness, and modesty.' 
Clauses. — ' It is no small evil that the avenues to fam£ should be blocked up 
by a swarm of noisy, pushing, elbowing pretenders. . . . It will hardly 
be denied that government is a means for the attainment of an end.' 

Having made Hs subject prominent, tlie modern historian 
next takes care to introduce only a few phrases and clauses, 
and he places these adjuncts so that their several relations to 
nouns or to verbs are for the most p8|,rt readily seen. Here, 
however, he has to encounter one of our chief difficulties in 
composition, and sometimes — comparatively speaking, rarely 
— he makes a mistake in misplacing an expanded adverbial. 
Now and then, indeed, he constructs a long period, but it is 
neither intricate nor elaborate ; for his method is here very 
simple, and the result is accordingly very clear. One element, 
employed either in a simple or in an enlarged form, is re- 
iterated — a subject, an attribute, an adverbial, or an object. 
This last, for example, is often repeated in a long period 
serving as introductory to the ' History of England.' Every- 
where the writer's chief aims are isolation, antithesis, and 
emphasis in assertion or in denial. The reader may like or 
may dislike the writer's tone, but must understand his meaning. 
In his style of composition one good trait is ever made distinct 
and prominent. But a virtue may have its attendant defects, 
and clearness itself is not an exception. Where this good 
quality is nearly always so brightly displayed, the quiet charms 
of freedom, variety, and harmony must sometimes be absent. 
Extensive reading will show that these qualities belong to 
EngHsh literature. 

The two styles already noticed may be respectively called 
the synthetic and the analytic. The latter might, with respect 
to its most distinct and prominent forms, be called antithetic. 
But with respect to the brevity of sentences, it is mostly Hke 
our ordinary style of narration and common discourse. This 
style is so familiar that it is hardly spoken of as 'a style.' It 
is our plain, ordinary mode of writing, and is often vaguely 
described as * a simple style.' Here the word ' simple ' is 
falsely employed. Excepting the instance of Macpherson's 
' Ossian,' paragraphs in books are not made by stringing 
together 'simple sentences.' Even children do not always 
(talk in * simple sentences,' but often make use of clauses. 


Our plain, ordinary style, in literature and in conversation, 
has these chief traits : it is neither extensively synthetic nor 
remarkably antithetic ; it does not merely say one thing and 
then come to a full stop, but the sentence mostly ends when 
two or three things have been said or implied ; one short 
sentence is mostly followed by another having a similar 
extent ; the subject, or the verb, is defined by a phrase, or by 
a clause ; but the phrases and clauses introduced in one 
sentence are few. These are the chief traits of our ordinary 
style, which is largely employed by narrative authors and by 
writers of all classes, excepting a few who are distinguished 
by their frequent use of long sentences. 

Long sentences are not often constructed so well that they 
may be classed with artistic periods. In both the construction 
employed extensively is synthetic ; but an artistic period has 
its own distinct method of construction. A long sentence, of 
the ordinary kind, may be made perfectly clear, and may be 
easily resolved into a few constituent parts or elements. Of 
these one, having the form of a word, a phrase, or a clause, 
may, as to formy be repeated again and again. One verb 
may follow several subjects, or may be followed by several 
objects, and thus the long sentence may be made clear, though 
it has no remarkable symmetry or beauty. But in other 
specimens of long sentences — for example, in many written 
by Clarendon — ^too many phrases and clauses are inserted, 
and the relations of pronouns are often made dubious. In one 
sentence the writer sometimes intends to say or to imply half 
a dozen facts, or more, and at last the reader hardly knows 
where to find the principal subject. In plain words, he does 
not well see what the author is writing about. 

An artistic period has a form not seen in long sentences of 
the ordinary kind. The whole period divides itself into two 
main parts — each complex — and their relation to each other is 
made clear. Each is distinct, while closely united with the 
other. Thus the period may develope a contrast ; a doubt 
may be followed by its solution ; relief may follow suspense, 
or the latter part may answer a question proposed in the 
former. The period has two main parts, and these are united 
so as to constitute a whole. 

Of the four modes here respectively called synthetic, ana- 
lytic, plain or ordinary, and artistic, each may be made tiresome 
by frequent repetitions. The fifth — the true classic style — is 
often and truly called * harmonious,' but its character cannot 
Jf)e fairly denoted by the use q£. any single term. The general 

B 2 


traits of this style are variety and harmony, and its beauty is 
seen, not in any single sentence, but in the whole series of 
sentences forming a passage. Such plain and familiar con- 
structions as have been called ordinary are freely employed ; 
antithesis is used, but is not made too prominent ; synthetic 
sentences are introduced, but are not vaguely extended, and 
periods that may be called artistic are employed, but not 
isolated by means of an excessive elaboration. All these four 
modes of construction are rightly treated as the subordinate 
parts of a passage or a series of sentences ; all variations of 
mode are subdued by a constant regard to the general harmony 
of the whole to which they belong. Classic prose is almost as 
scarce as melodious verse. 

Few writers — even among those justly called ' classic ' — 
bestow much care on their constructions of paragraphs. In 
its purport, as well as in its form, a well-constructed para- 
graph should have a beginning, a middle, and an end. But 
in many formal divisions called ' paragraphs ' the order is 
merely consecutive, and in others no progress is made ; their 
movement is like that of ' a door on its hinges.' 


Freedom and variety have always belonged more or less 
to English Syntax, while its general or higher rules have, 
during the last five centuries, remained mostly permanent. 
Our constructions of sentences are far older than the modern 
forms of our words. The changes that have taken place in 
Syntax belong mostly to its special part — that part which 
prescribes certain uses of inflexions. 

When writings of the fourteenth century are called 
* obsolete ' and ' obscure,' these terms refer to their etymology, 
and to their special, but not to their higher or general, Syntax. 
The facts here named may be readily made evident by a brief 
review of selected writings, including specimens of our best 
works produced during the course of the last five centuries. 
It will be understood that the writings here noticed are de- 
scribed only with reference to their higher Syntax, or to their 
more prominent modes of construction. In studying the 
relations existing between phrases and clauses on one side^ 
and principal clauses on the other, we learn the main rules of 
our higher Syntax — rules more important than those which 
treat mostly of mere words and their several inflexions. It is 
with reference to our higher rules of Syntax that our present 

PROSE writers: 1356-1400. 245 

modes of construction are described as ancient, Englisli, and 

1356-1400. — The prose written during the latter half of 
the fourteenth century contains many specimens of rather 
long sentences. Here, as in Modem English, clearness is 
mostly a result of the right order in which subjects, verbs, 
and their several adjuncts are placed. Numerous passages 
that, with respect to their length, look like periods, consist of 
nothing more than series of short sentences. In many parts 
of Wycliffe's Bible the syntax closely imitates the style of 
the Yulgate. In the prose of Teevisa (a translator) the 
short sentences are better than the long. ' The Yoiage and 
Travaile ' of Mandeville (who wrote in 1356) shows archaisms 
of syntax ; but these have reference rather to our special than 
to our general rules of syntax. For example, double forms of 
comparison and of negation are often seen, and in denoting 
purposes, as in other uses, for precedes the infinitive, as in 
the following sentence : — ' The lewes han no propre lond of 
hireowne/or to dwellen inne.' Many examples of synthetic 
sentences, rather long yet perfectly clear, are seen in the 
* Tale of Melibeus,' a translation given in Chaucer's ' Canter- 
bury Tales.' The paragraphs on ' Riches ' may be classed 
with our best specimens of Old English prose. In the same 
collection ' The Persones Tale ' (a treatise on penitence) con- 
tains many long sentences. Among these some are easily 
made, by stringing together several assertions ; in others one 
part is in substance repeated, or is divided into particulars, 
which are given in the form of a series. Here, as elsewhere, 
the right order of subjects, verbs, and their several adjuncts 
is the true source of clearness. The higher or general syntax 
is essentially nothing more than such right order as is seen in 
the works of our best modem writers. 

'"What is li3tere,/or to seie to the sike man in palasie [palsy], Synnes 
ben for3ouen to thee, or for to seie, Ryse, tak thi bed, and walke ? Sothely 
[truly] that 3ee -mte [may know] that mannes sone hath powere in erthe 
to for3etie synnes', he seith to the sike man in palasie, ' I seie to thee, ryse 
up, take thy bed and go in-to thin house.' — Wycliffe's Bible, Mark ii. 

' And also Machomete loved wel a gode heremyte that duelled in the 
desertes, a myle fro Mount Synay, in the weye that men gon fro Arabye 
toward Caldee, and toward Ynde, o [one] day journey fro the see, where 
the marchauntes of Venyse comen often for marchandise.' — Mandevillb. 

'Hyt 6emeJ» a gret wondur hou3 Englysch, i>at is )>e bur|)-tonge of 
Englysch men and here [their] oune longage and tonge, ys so dyuers 
[diverse] of soun in t>is ylond ; and J?e longage of Normandy ys comlyng 
[a new comer] of a-no)>er lond, and haj? on [one] maner soun among al men 
J*t speke> hyt ary3t in Engelond.' — ^hn of Tbevisa. 


' If thou be right happy, that is to sayn, if thou be right riche, thanne 
schalt thou fynde a gret nombre of felawes and frendes ; and if thy fortune 
chaunge, that thou waxe pore, fare wel frendschipe ; for thou schalt ben 
aloone withouten eny companie, hut if [except] it be the compaignye of 
pore folk.' — The Tale of Melibeus. 

' By these resouns that I have sayd unto you, and by many another 
resoun that I know and couthe say, I graunte yow that richesses ben goode 
to hem [them] that gete hem wel, and to hem that hem wel usen ; and 
therfore wol I schewe yow how ye schulde here yow in getyng of riches, and 
in what maner ye schulde usen hem.' — The Tale of Melibeus. 

' Certes [certainly] than is envye the worste synne that is ; for sothely 
[truly] alle other synnes ben somtyme oonly agains oon special vertu ; but 
certes envye is agayns al goodnes ; for it is sory of [for] alle the bountees 
of his [its] neighebor ; and in this maner it is divers [different] from all 
the synnes ; for wel [indeed] unnethe [scarcely] is ther any synne that it 
ne [not] hath som delit [delight] in itself, sauf [save] oonly envye, that 
ever hath in itself anguisch and sorwe [sorrow].' — The Persones Tale. 

The best prose of the fifteenth century belongs to the time 
1422-1483, and is written mostly in an artless and familiar 
style. The language of the ' Paston Letters ' has often a tone 
so modern, that doubts have been raised respecting the 
authorship of the letters and the time to which they belong. 
After 1430 Sir John Forte scue wrote, in a homely style, a 
book showing the advantages of a limited monarchy, and 
Pecock, a bishop, wrote, after 1450, a book against the 
Lollards. Some years after that time IIobeet Fabian wrote a 
chronicle of English history. Caxton, our first printer, wrote, 
near the time 1483, his preface to a second and amended 
edition of the ' Canterbury Tales.' That preface includes 
some long and ill-constructed sentences. But the prose of the 
time here noticed is mostly clear, with respect to its general 
syntax. In the ' Paston Letters ' the worst error is a vague 
use of pronouns — an error too noticeable in our literature of 
the present time. Of this error some examples are seen in 
the following excerpt from a letter written by Agnes Paston 
and referring to her son's education : — 

' If he [Clement] hathe nought do [done] well, nor wyll amend, prey 
hym [G-renefeld, a schoolmaster], that he wyll trewly belassch hym, tyl he 
wyll amend ; and so ded the last maystr [schoolmaster], and the best that 
ever he had, att Caumbrege. And sey [to] Grenefeld, that if he wyll take 
up on him to brynge hym [Clement] in to good rewyll [rule] and lernyng, 
that I may verily know he doth hys dever [duty], I wyll geve hym [the 
master] x marcs for hys labor, for I had lever [would rather choose] he 
[Clement] wer fayr beryed than lost [ruined] for defaute [by his own 
fault].'— TAe Paston Letters. 

' It is cowardise and lack of hartes and corage that kepith the French- 
men from rysing [insurrection], and not povertye ; which corage no Frenche 
man hath like to the English man. It hath ben often seen in Englond 
that III or rv thefes for povertie hath sett upon vii or viii true men. 

PROSE writers: 1500-1560. 247 

and robbyd them al. But it hath not ben seen in Fraunce that vii or 
viii thefes have ben hardy [bold enough] to robbe iii or rv true men. 
Wherefor it is right seld [seldom] that French men be hangyd for robberye, 
f<yr that [because] they have no hertys to do so terryble an acte.' — Sib 
John Fortescub. 

' And in the moneth of Juny this yere, the comons of Kent assemblyd 
them in grete multytude, and chase [chose] to them [for themselves] a 
capitayne, and named hym Mortymer and cosyn to the Duke of Yorke • 
but of moste [by most people] he was named Jack Cade. This [man] kepte 
the people wondrouslie togader, and made such ordenaunces amonge theym, 
that he brought a grete nombre of people of theym unto the Blak Heth, 
where he deuysed a bylle of petycions to the kynge and his counsayll.' — 
Egbert Fabian. 

* I said .... I wold ones [once] endevoyre me to emprynte it [the 
book] agayn, for to satisfy the auctour, where as tofore [before] by 
ygnoraunce I erryd in hurtyng and dyffamyng his book in dyverce [various] 
places, in setting in somme thynges that he never sayd ne [nor] made, and 
leving out many thynges that he made, whyche ben requysite to be sette 
in it.' — William Caxton. 

1500-1550. — In tHe former half of tlie sixteentli century 
prose lias mostly a plain and easy style, but contains too 
many long sentences, often shapeless, though seldom obscure. 
The conjunction and is too often set v^here a full stop would 
be more welcome. In a sermon preached by Bishop Fisher 
(in 1509) the chief traits are frequent inversions of our 
usual order — an order too strictly followed by many modern 
writers. His style thus gained emphasis, while it lost no clear- 
ness. Lord Berners's version of Froissart ; More's historical 
book ; Latimer's sermons, and Elyot's ' Castle of Health ' — 
all these contain fair specimens of plain English. Tyndale's 
version of the New Testament (1525), and later versions of 
the Bible, had, in their general diction, an archaic and conser- 
vative character, too important to be fairly estimated here. 
With respect to syntax, their tendency was indeed good, so 
far as it extended, but it was not strong enough to control 
the fashions of the times that followed. The anonymous 
Northern book, called ' The Complaynt of Scotlande ' (1549), 
has its own modes of spelling and other variatione of words, 
while its general syntax is ordinary. Ascham is on the whole 
the best writer of this time. His book on archery ('Toxo- 
philus,' 1544) partly agrees with his own ideal of a good 
style ; it should be always clear, he says, and should have 
various tones, rising and falling in accordance with the 

'She was good in remembrance and of holding [tenacious] -.memory. A 

ready wit [the object] she had also to conceive all things, albeit they were 

- right [very] dark. Right stiidiou^XhQ predicate] she was in books, which 


she had in great number, both in English and in French ; and for her 
exercise, and for the profit of others, she did translate divers matters of 
devotion out of the French into English.' — John Fisheb. [The spelling is 

* Maistres Alyce, in my most harty wise I recommend me to you, and 
■whereas I am enfourmed by my son Heron of the losse of our barnes and of 
our neighbours' [barns] also, with all the corn that was therein, albeit 
(saving Grod's pleasure) it is gret pitie of so much good corn lost, yet sith 
[since] it hath liked [pleased] hym to sende us such a chaunce, we must 
and are bounden, not only to be content, but also to be glad of his visitacion. 
He sente us alle that we have loste ; and sith he hath by such a chaunce 
taken it away againe, his pleasure be fulfilled. Let us never grudge ther 
at, but take it in good worth [part], and hartely thank him, as well for 
adversitie as for prosperitie.' — Sib Thomas Mobe, A Letter to Lady More. 

' And here note the diligence of these shepheardes : for whether the 
sheepe were theyr owne, or whether they were servaunts, I cannot tell, for 
it is not expressed in the booke ; but it is most lyke they were servauntes, 
and theyr maysters had put them in trust to keepe theyr sheepe. . . . And 
here all servaunts may learne by these shepheards to serve truely and 
diligently unto their maisters ; in what busines soever they are set to doe, 
let them be paynefuU and diligent, like as Jacob was unto his maister 
Laban.' — Hugh Latimeb. [The punctuation is altered.] 

* In winter, running and wrestling is convenient ; in summer wrestling 
a little, but not running; in very cold weather, much walking; in hot 
weather rest is more expedient. . . . Finally, loud reading, counterfeit 
battle, tennis or throwing the ball, running, walking, added to shooting 
(which in mine opinion exceeds all the other), do exercise the body 
commodiously.' — Sib Thomas Elyot. [The spelling is altered.] 

' A certayne man had two sonnes, and the yonger of them sayde to his 
father : father geve me my part of the goodes that to me belongeth. And 
he divided unto them his substaunce. And not long after the yonger sonne 
gaddered all that he had togedder, and toke his jorney into a farre countre, 
and theare he wasted his goodes with royetous lyringe. And when he had 
spent all that he had, there arose a greate derth thorow out all that same 
lande, and he began to lacke [want]. And he went and clave to a citesyn 
of that same countre, which sent him to his felde to keep his swyne.' — 
William Tyndale's Version of the New Testament, Luke xv. 

' There is nocht twa nations undir the firmament that ar mair contrar 
and different fra vthirs nor [than] is [ = are] inglis men and scottis men, 
quhoubeit [howbeit = although] that thai be vith-in ane ile, and nycht- 
bours, and of ane langage. for inglis men ar subtil, and scottis men ar 
facile, inglis men ar ambitius in prosperite, and scottis men ar humain in 
prosperite. inglis men are humil [humble] quhen [when] thei ar subieckit 
be force and violence, and scottis men ar furious quhen thai ar violently 
subiekit.' — The Com'playnt of Scotlande. 

'It is a notable tale that old Eir Eoger Chamloe, sometime chief 
justice, would tell of himself. When he was Ancient in inn of court, 
certain young gentlemen were brought before him, to be corrected for 
certain misorders, and one of the lustiest [merriest] said : " Sir, we be 
young gentlemen ; and wise men before us have proved [tried] all fashions, 
and yet those have done full well." This they said, because it was well 
known Sir Roger had been a good fellow in his youth. But he answered 
them very wisely. " Indeed," said he, " in youth I was as you are now, and 
I had twelve fellows like unto myself ; but not one of them came to a good 

PROSE writers: 1558-1603. 249 

■end. And, therefore, follow not my example in youth, but follow my 
counsel in age, if ever ye think to come to this place, or to these years that 
I am come unto ; less [lest] ye meet either with poverty or Tyburn in the 
way." ' — Roger Ascham. [The spelling is altered.] 

1558-1603. — The Elizabethan age has, with respect to 
poetry, such fame as belongs to no other time, and of its prose 
some parts have been highly commended as works of genius. 
It must, therefore, be remembered that our topic is prose, of 
which nothing is said, save what relates to syntax. Three 
styles of construction are at this time prevalent— the ordinary, 
the synthetic, and the analytic. The last is often made anti- 
thetic, and the first is too often mixed with long and cumber- 
some sentences. This mixed style is seen in several works, 
consisting mostly of chronicles, voyages, and travels, while 
long sentences of a better constraction are numerous in the 
* History of the World,' compiled by Raleigh and his friends. 
Elaborately synthetic periods have been noticed as traits in 
Hooker's work, but it contains also many passages of which 
the style is various and harmonious. Bacon employs three 
modes of construction. His ordinary style often supplies 
examples of extreme conciseness ; in some places the synthesis 
is artistic, in others an analytic form prevails, and antitheses 
are stated with great force and clearness ; but in many 
passages his thoughts, like men in a crowd, press one upon 
another. He gives in a brief essay the matter of a treatise. 

Of some extravagant styles, partly admired as literary 
fashions of this time, two are named — the antithetic prose of 
Lyly and GossoN on one side ; on the other, the polemical 
prose of Thomas Nash and his associates. This latter style 
Bacon described as an ' immodest and deformed manner of 

' The British tongue called Cymric [Cymraeg] doth yet remain in that 
part of the island which is now called Wales, whither the Britons wejre 
driven after the Saxons had made a full conquest of the other, which we 
now call England, although the pristine integrity thereof [i.e. of that 
tongue] be not a little diminished by mixture of tlie Latin and Saxon 
speeches withal. [Here, as in many places, the preposition withal follows 
the noun.] Howbeit many poesies and writings — in making whereof that 
nation hath evermore delighted — are yet extant in my time, whereby some 
difference between the ancient and [the] present language may easily be 
discerned, notwithstanding that among all these [writings] there is nothing 
to be found which can set down [establish] any sound and full testimony of 
their own original, in remembrance whereof their bards and cunning men 
[scholars] have been most slack and negligent.' — Williajvi Harbison, 
[The spelling is altered.] 

' They say the goodliest cedars which grow on the high mountains of 
WLibanus thrust their roots betweeii*he clefts of hard rocks, the better to 


bear themselves against the strong storms that blow there. As nature has 
instructed those kings of trees, so has reason taught the kings of men to 
root themselves in the hardy hearts of their faithful subjects ; and as those 
kings of trees have large tops, so have the kings of men large crowns, 
whereof [ = and anent the crowns of both cedars and kingsj, as the first 
■would soon be broken from their bodies, were they not underborne by 
many branches, so would the other easily totter, were they not fastened on 
their heads with the strong chains of civil justice and of martial discipline.' 
— Sir "Walter Kaleigh. [The spelling is altered.] 

' If your sacred Maiestie thinke me vnworthy, and that after x yeares 
tempest, I must att court suffer shipwreck of my tyme, my -wittes, my 
hopes, vouchsafe in your neuer-erring iudgement some plank or rafter to 
wafte me into a country vi^here, in my sad [serious] and settled devocion, I 
may in euery corner of a thatcht cottage -write praiers in stead of plaies, 
prayer for your longe and prosprous life, and a repentaunce that I have 
played the foole so louge. . . . Thirteene years [have I been] your 
highnes [a possessive form] servant, but yet [I have] nothing; twenty 
freinds [have I] that, though they saye they wil be sure, I find them sure 
to be slowe. A thousand hopes, but all nothing ; a hundred promises, but 
yet nothing. Thus, casting upp the inventory of my freinds, hopes, 
promises, and tymes, the summa totalis amounteth to just nothing. My 
last will is shorter than myne invencion ; but [except] three legacies — 
patience to my creditors, melancholie without measure to my friends, and 
beggerie without shame to my family.' — John Ltly. 

' The title of my book doth promise much, the volume you see is very 
little : and sithens [since] I cannot bear out my folly by authority, like an 
emperor, I will crave pardon for my phrensy, by submission, as your 
worships' to command. The school -which I build is narro-w, and at the 
first blush appeareth but a dog-hole ; yet small clouds carry -water ; slender 
threads se-w sure stitches ; little hairs have their shadows ; blunt stones 
•whet knives ; from hard rocks flow soft springs ; the -whole world is dra-wn 
in a map. Homer's ' Iliad ' in a nut-shell, a king's picture in a penny,' 
etc. — Stephen Gtosson. 

' To the second rancke of reprehenders, that complain of my boystrous 
[boisterous] compound words, and [of my] ending my Italionate coyned 
verbes all in ize, thus I replie : That [there is] no -winde that blowes 
strong but [ =5 that .... not] is boystrous ; [there can. be] no speech or 
wordes of any power or force to confute or perswade, but [ = that .... not] 
must be s-welling and boystrous. For the compounding of my -wordes, 
therein I imitate rich men -who, having store of -white single money 
together, convert a number of those small little sentes [coins] into great 
peeces of gold, such as double pistoles and portugues [Portuguese gold 
pieces]. Our English tongue, of all languages, most s-warmeth with the 
single money of monosillables, which are the onely scandal of it. Bookes, 
written in them and no other [words], seeme like shop-keepers' boxes, that 
containe nothing else saue halfe-pence, three-farthings, and two-pences. 
Therefore what did' me [ = for my part] I, but, having a huge heape of 
those worthlesse shreds of small English, in my pia maters purse, to make 
the royaller shew with them to men's eyes, [I] had them [sent] to the 
compounders immediately, and exchanged them foure into one, and others 
into more, according to the Greek, Erench, Spanish, and Italian.' — Thomas 

* Thus arose political societies among men naturally equal. Men 
reasoned that strifes and troubles would be endlesse, except they, gave their 

PROSE WRITERS : 1600-1660. 251 

common consent all to be ordered by some whom they should agree upon, 
without which consent there were no reasons that one man should take 
upon him to be lord or iudge over another ; because although there be, 
according to the opinion of some very great and iudicious men, a kinds of 
naturall right in the noble, wise, and vertuous, to governe them which are 
of servile disposition ; neuerthelesse for manifestation of this their right, 
and men's more peaceable contentment on both sides, the assent of them 
wlio are to be governed seemeth necessary.' — Kichaed Hookeb. 

' Studies serue for pastimes, for ornaments, and for abilities. Their 
chiefe use for pastime is in priuateness and retiring ; for omamente is in 
discourse, and for abilitie is in iudgement. For expert men can execute, 
but learned men are fittest to iudge or censure. To spend too much time 
iu them is sloath, to vse them too much for ornament is affectation : to make 
iudgement wholly by their rules is the humour of a schoUer. They perfect 
Nature, and are perfected by experience, Craftie men contemne them, 
simple men admire them, wise men vse them : For they teach not their 
owne vse, but that is a wisedome without them : and aboue them wonne by 
obseruation. Reade not to contradict, nor to belieue, but to waigh and 
consider.' — Lobd Bacon. [In the specimens that follow the spelling is 
made modern.] 

• As water, whether it be the dew of heaven or the springs of the earth, 
doth scatter and lose itself in the ground, except it be collected into soma 
receptacle, where it may by union comfbrt [strengthen] and sustain itself, 
and [as] for that cause the industry of man hath framed and made spring- 
heads, conduits, cisterns, and pools, which men have [been] accustomed 
likewise to beautify and adorn with accomplishments of magnificence and 
state, as well as of use and necessity ; || so knowledge, whether it descend 
from divine inspiration, or spring from human sense, would soon perish 
and vanish to oblivion, if it were not preserved in books, traditions, con- 
ferences, and places appointed, as universities, colleges, and schools, for 
the receipt and comforting [ = strengthening or establishing of] the same.' — 
Lord Bacon. [The parallels (1) show the division of the whole period 
into its two main parts.] 

'The virtue of prosperity is temperance; the virtue of adversity is 
fortitude. Prosperity is the blessing of the Old Testament ; adversity is 
the blessing of the New, which carrieth the greater benediction and the 
clearer revelation of God's favour. . . . Prosperity is not without many 
fears and distastes ; and adversity is not without comforts and hopes. We 
see in needleworks and embroideries, it is more pleasing to have a lively 
work upon a sad [sedate] and solemn ground, than to have a dark and 
melancholy work upon a lightsome ground ; judge therefore of the pleasure 
of the heart by the pleasure of the eye. Certainly, virtue is like precious 
odours, most fragrant where they are incensed [burned] or crushed ; for 
prosperity doth best discover "sace, but adversity doth best discover virtue.' 
— Lobd Bacon. [The first specimen shows the writer's plain style ; the 
second is an artistic period ; the third contains several antitheses.] 

1600-1660. — Milton's prose is in one respect lil^e the 
prose of Jeremy Taylor. Each contains many long periods 
of which the structure is too extensively synthetic. The same 
excess is here and there seen in several other writers of this 
time. On the other hand, numerous passages of clear and 
analytic character are seen^n the writings of Hall, Earlr, 


and Fuller. The style of Izaak Walton has its own un- 
studied harmony ; and, with respect to ease and variety, Cowlet, 
in some degree, anticipates the later classic style of Drtden. 
But in moderate synthesis, and clear analysis, Hobbes is the 
best prose- writer of this period. 

'Seeing that truth consisteth in the right ordering of names in our 
affirmations, a man that seeketh precise truth had need to remember what 
every name he useth stands for, and to place it accordingly ; or else he will 
find himself entangled in words, as a bird in lime twigs — the more he 
struggles the more belimed. And therefore in geometry — which is the 
only science that it hath pleased Grod to bestow on mankind — men begin at 
settling the significations of their words, which settling of significations 
they call definitions, and place them at the beginning of their reckoning. 
By this it appears, how necessary it is for any man that aspires to true 
knowledge to examine the definitions of former authors, and either to 
correct them where they are negligently set down, or to make them himself. 
For the errors of definitions multiply themselves according as the reckoning 
proceeds, and lead men into absurdities, which at last they see, but cannot 
avoid without reckoning anew, from the beginning, in which lies the foun- 
dation of their errors.'— -Thomas Hobbes. 

* What would a blind man give to see the pleasant rivers, and meadows, 
and flowers, and fountains, that we have met with since we met together ? 
I have been told, that if a man that was born blind could obtain to have 
his sight for but only one hour during his whole life, and should, at the 
first opening of his eyes, fix his sight upon the sun when it was in his full 
glory, either at the rising or setting of it, he would be so transported and 
amazed, and so admire the glory of it, that he would not willingly turn his 
eyes from that first ravishing object to behold all the other various beauties 
this world could present to him. And this, and many other like blessings, 
we enjoy daily. And for most of them, because they be so common, most 
men forget to pay their praises ; but let not us, because it is a sacrifice so 
pleasing to Him that made that sun and us, and still protects us, and gives 
us flowers, and showers, and stomachs, and meat, and content, and leisure 
to go a-fishing.' — Izaak "Walton. 

* Learning is like a river, whose head being far in the land, is, at first 
rising, little, and easily viewed ; but, still as you go, it gapeth with a wider 
bank ; not without pleasure and delightful winding, while it is on both 
sides set vrith trees, and the beauties of various flowers. But still the 
further you follow it, the deeper and the broader 'tis, till at last it inwaves 
itself in the unfathomed ocean ; there you see more water, but no shore — 
no end of that liquid fluid vastness. In many things we may sound 
Nature, in the shallows of her revelations. "We may trace her to her 
second causes ; but, beyond them, we meet with nothing but the puzzle of 
the soul, and the dazzle of the mind's dim eyes. While we speak of things 
that are, that we may dissect, and have power and means to find the 
causes, there is some pleasure, some certainty. But when we come to 
metaphysics, to long-buried antiquity, and unto unrevealed divinity, we are 
in a sea, which is deeper than the short reach of the line of man. Much 
may be gained by studious inquisition ; but more will ever rest [remain], 
nrhich man cannot discover.' — Owen Feltham. 

' After I had, from my first years, by the ceaseless diligence and care of 
my father, whom God recompense, been exercised to the tongues, and some 

PROSE WRITERS : 1660-1700. 253 

sciences, as my age "would suffer, by sundry masters and teachers, both at 
home and at the schools, it was found that -whether aught was imposed [on] 
me by them that had the overlooking, or betaken to of my own choice in 
English, or other tongue, prosing or versing, but chiefly the latter, the 
style, by certain vital signs it had, was likely to live. But much latelier, 
in the private academies of Italy, whither I was favoured to resort, per- 
ceiving that some trifles which I had in memory, composed at under 
twenty or thereabout — for the manner is, that every one must give some 
proof of his wit and reading there — met with acceptance above what was 
looked for ; and other things which I had shifted, in scarcity of books and 
conveniences, to patch up among them, were received with written en- 
comiums, which the Italian is not forward to bestow on men of this side 
the Alps, I began thus far to assent both to them and divers of my friends 
here at home ; and not less to an inward prompting, which now grew daily 
upon me, that by labour and intent study, which I take to be my portion in 
this life, joined to the strong propensity of nature, I might perhaps leave 
something so written, to after-times, as they should not willingly let it 
die.' — John Milton. 

' It is a vanity to persuade the world one hath much learning by getting 
a great library. As soon shall I believe every one is valiant who hath a 
well-furnished armoury. I guess good housekeeping by the smoking, not 
the number of the tunnels, as knowing that many of them, built merely for 
uniformity, are without chimneys, and more without fires. Once a dunce, 
void of learning, but full of books, flouted a libraryless scholar with these 
words : " Hail, doctor without books ! " But the next day, the scholar 
conyng into the jeerer's study crowded with books, " Hail, books," said he, 
" without a doctor ! " ' — Thomas Ftjixee. 

* So have I seen a lark rising from his bed of grass, and soaring up- 
wards, singing as he rises, and hopes to get to heaven, and climb above the 
clouds ; but the poor bird was beaten back with the loud sighings of an 
eastern wind, and his motion made irregular and inconstant, descending 
more at every breath of the tempest, than it could recover by the libration 
and frequent weighing of his wings, till the little creature was forced to sit 
down and pant, and stay till the storm was over ; and then it made a pros- 
perous flight, and did rise and sing, as if it had learned music and motion 
from an angel, as he passed sometimes through the air, about his ministries 
here below.' — Jeeemy Tatloe. 

1660-1700. — The more synthetic prose of this age has two 
styles ; one comparatively clear, the other too often obscnre. 
The former is seen in the writings of Barrow, South, and 
Stillingfleet ; the latter in the prose of Clarendon. In 
several works of this age — above all in the prose- writings of 
Drtden — a great improvement is made by a more liberal nse 
of short sentences. The style of Temple is harmonions, but 
with regard to energy and variety cannot be compared with 
Dryden's. This is not always careful and precise, but is so 
natural and various, and so well accordant with its themes, 
that it is justly called classical. 

' From his travels he [Fiennes] returned through Scotland (which few 
taavellers took in their way home) #t the time when that rebellion [the 


Scotch] was in bud : and [he] was very little known, except amongst that 
people [his own sect] which conversed wholly amongst themselves, until he 
was now [at last] found in Parliament [sent to Parliament], when it was 
quickly discovered that, as he was the darling of his father, so he [Fiennes, 
the son] was like to make good whatsoever he had for many years promised.' 
— Lord Claeendon. 

♦ They must be confessed to be the softest and sweetest, the most 
general and most innocent amusements of common time and life. They 
still find room in the courts of princes and the cottages of shepherds. 
They serve to revive and animate the dead calm of poor or idle lives, and 
to allay or divert the violent passions and perturbations of the greatest and 
busiest of men. And both these effects are of equal use to human life ; for 
the mind of man is like the sea, which is neither agreeable to the beholder 
nor to the voyager in a calm or in a storm, but is so to both when a little 
agitated by gentle gales ; and so the mind, when moved by soft and easy 
passions and affections. I know very well, that many, who pretend to be 
wise by the forms of being grave, are apt to despise both poetry and music, 
as toys and trifles too light for the use and entertainment of serious men. 
But whoever find themselves wholly insensible to these charms would, I 
think, do well to keep their own counsel, for fear of reproaching their own 
temper, and bringing the goodness of their natures, if not of their under- 
standings, into question : it may be thought at least an ill sign, if not an 
ill constitution, since some of the fathers went so far as to esteem the love 
of music a sign of predestination, as a thing divine, and reserved for the 
felicities of heaven itself.' — Sib William Temple. 

'The laws of history, in general, are truth of matter, method, and 
clearness of expression. The first propriety is necessary, to keep our 
understanding from the impositions of falsehood ; for history is an argu- 
ment framed from many particular examples or inductions ; if these 
examples are not true, then those measures of life which we take from 
them will be false, and deceive us in their consequence. The second is 
grounded on the former ; for if the method be confused, if the words or 
expressions of thought are any way obscure, then the ideas which we re- 
ceive must be imperfect ; and if such, we are not taught by them what to 
elect or what to shun. Truth, therefore, is required as the foundation of 
history to inform us, disposition and perspicuity as the manner to inform 
us plainly; one is the being, the other the well-being of it.' — John 

* In a word, that former sort of satire, which is known in England by 
the name of lampoon, is a dangerous sort of weapon, and for the most part 
unlawful. We have no moral right on the reputation of otlier men. It is 
taking from them what we cannot restore to them. There are only two 
reasons for which we may be permitted to write lampoons ; and I will not 
promise that they can always justify us. The first is revenge, when we 
have been affronted in the same nature, or have been anyways notoriously 
abused, and can make ourselves no other reparation. And yet we know, 
that, in Christian charity, all offences are to be forgiven, as we expect the 
like pardon for those which we daily commit against Almighty God. And 
this consideration has often made me tremble when I was saying our 
Saviour's prayer ; for the plain condition of the forgiveness which we beg, 
is the pardoning of others the offences which they have done to us ; for 
which reason I have many times avoided the commission of that fault, even 
when I have been notoriously provoked. Let not this, my lord, pass for 

PROSE writers: 1700-1760. 255 

vanity in me, for it is truth. More libels have been written against me 
than almost any man now living ; and I had reason on my side to have 
defended my own innocence. I speak not of my poetry, which I have 
wholly given up to the critics : let them use it as they please : posterity, 
perhaps, may be more favourable to me : for interest and passion will lie 
buried in another age, and partiality and prejudice be forgotten. I speak 
of my morals, which have been sufficiently aspersed : that only sort of 
reputation ought to be dear to every honest man, and is to me. But let 
the world witness for me, that I have been often wanting to myself in that 
particular : I have seldom answered any scurrilous lampoon, when it was 
in my power to have exposed my enemies : and, being naturally vindictive, 
have suffered in silence, and possessed my soul in quiet.' — John Drtden. 

' I confess it is as difficult for us, who date our ignorance from our first 
being, and were still bred up with the same infirmities about us with which 
we were bom, to raise our thoughts and imaginations to those intellectual 
perfections that attended our nature in the time of innocence, as it is [difficult] 
for a peasant bred up in the obscurities of a cottage to fancy in his mind 
the unseen splendours of a court. But by rating positives by their priva- 
tives, and [by] other acts of reason, by which discourse supplies the want 
of the reports of sense, we may collect the excellency of the understanding 
then by the glorious remainders of it now, and guess at the stateliness of 
the building by the magnificence of its ruins. All those arts, rarities, and 
inventions, which vulgar minds gaze at, the ingenious pursue, and all 
admire, are but the relics of an intellect defaced with sin and time. "We 
admire it now only as antiquaries do a piece of old coin, for the stamp it 
once bore, and not for those vanishing lineaments and disappearing draughts 
that remain upon it at present. And certainly that must needs have been 
very glorious the decays of which are so admirable. He that is comely 
when old and decrepit, surely was very beautiful when he was young.' — 


'But "he that walketh uprightly, and worketh righteousness, and 
speaketh the truth in his heart," . . . may possibly meet with such as will 
be ready to condemn him for hypocrisy at first ; but when they find he 
keeps to a certain rule, and pursues honest designs, without any great 
regard to the opinion which others entertain concerning him, then all that 
know him cannot but esteem and value him ; his friends love him, and his 
enemies stand in awe of him. " The path of the just," saith the wise man. 
" is as the shining light which shineth more and more unto the perfect 
day." As the day begins with obscurity and a great mixture of darkness, 
till by quick and silent motions the light overcomes the mists and vapours 
of the night, and not only spreads its beams upon the tops of the mountains, 
but darts them into the deepest and most shady valleys ; thus simplicity 
and integrity may at first appearing look dark and suspicious, till by 
degrees it breaks through the clouds of envy and detraction, and then 
shines with a greater glory.' — Edward Stuxingfleet. 

1700-1760. — In the prose of Addison sentences well 
varied in modes of structure are in various ways linked 
together, and their general effect is like that produced by a 
series of well-modulated harmonies. This style is too good 
to be fairly represented by anv one short specimen ; but the 
first quotation here given may serve as an example of art 


where no artifice appears. Addison here introduces a themOy 
and gives three illustrations ; he then closes the paragraph 
by repeating in an expanded form the initial theme. The 
same mode of composition is employed in classical music. 
In the special syntax of words Addison is not always precise, 
but the general order of his sentences is good. His friend 
Steele wrote less elegantly, but with natural ease and fluency, 
connecting with familiar modes of structure others of a more 
synthetic type. He holds a high place among the writers 
who in his time made literature social, and who wrote with 
such native force and vivacity as were not known in prose 
written before the time of Detden. The harmonious periods 
of Shaftesbuet and the graceful sentences of Pope's best 
letters were results of study — study made too apparent by 
the former writer, but often well concealed by the latter. In 
Berkeley short and plain sentences are so well connected 
with others more synthetic, that the general result is an ad- 
mirable style. The writers here named are rightly called 
classic, and the time to which their productions belong may 
be described as the age when English prose was made beau- 

' A man of polite imagination is let into a great many pleasures that 
the vulgar are not capable of receiving. He can converse with a picture, 
and find an agreeable companion in a statue. He meets with a secret 
refreshment in a description, and often feels a greater satisfaction in the 
prospect of fields and meadows than another does in the possession of 
them. It gives him a kind of property in everything he sees, and makes 
the most rude, uncultivated parts of nature administer to his pleasures. So 
that he looks on the world in another light and discovers in it a multitude 
of charms that conceal themselves from the generality of mankind.' — 
Joseph Addison. 

* I am always well pleased with a country Sunday, and think, if keeping 
holy the seventh day were only a human institution, it would be the best 
method that could have been thought of for the polishing and civilizing of 
mankind. It is certain the country people would soon degenerate into a 
kind of savages and barbarians, were there not such frequent returns of a 
stated time, in which the whole village meet together with their best faces, 
and in their cleanliest habits, to converse with one another upon dijSerent 
subjects, hear their duties explained to them, and join together in adoration 
of the Supreme Being.' — Joseph Addison. 

' We shall, therefore, utterly extinguish this melancholy thought of our 
being overlooked by our Maker, in the multiplicity of his works and the 
infinity of those objects among which he seems to be incessantly employed, 
if we consider, in the first place, that he is omnipresent ; and, in the 
second, that he is omniscient. If we consider him in his omnipresence, his 
being passes through, actuates, and supports the whole frame of nature. 
His creation, and every part of it, is full of him. There is nothing he has 
made that is either so distant, so little, or so inconsiderable, which he does 

PROSE writers: 1700-1760. 257 

not essentially inhabit. His substance is within the substance of every 
being, whether material or immaterial, and as intimately present to it as 
that being is to itself. It would be an imperfection in him were he able to 
remove out of one place into another, or to withdraw himself from anything 
he has created, or from any part of that space which is diffused and spread 
abroad to infinity. In short, to speak of him in the language of the old 
philosopher, he is a being whose centre is everywhere,, and his circum- 
ference nowhere.' — Joseph Addison. 

' But of all evils in story-telling, the humour of telling stories one after 
another in great numbers is the least supportable. Sir Harry Pandolf and 
his son gave my Lady Lizard great oflfence in this particular. Sir Harry 
hath what they call a string of stories, which he tells over every Christmas. 
When our family visits there, we are constantly, after supper, entertained 
with the Glastonbury Thorn. When we have wondered at that a little, 
" Ay, but, father," saith the son, "let us have the Spirit in the Wood." 
After that hath been laughed at, " Ay, but, father," cries the booby again, 
" tell us how you served the robber." " Alack-a-day," saith Sir Harry with 
a smile, and rubbing his forehead, " I have almost forgot that, but it is a 
pleasant conceit, to be sure." Accordingly he tells that and twenty more in 
the same independent order, and without the least variation, at this day, as 
he hath done, to my knowledge, ever since the Eevolution.' — Sir Richard 

' What is every year of a wise man's life but a censure or critic on the 
past ? Those whose date is the shortest, live long enough to laugh at one 
half of it ; the boy despises the infant ; the man, the boy ; the philosopher, 
both ; and the Christian, all. You may now begin to think your manhood 
was too much a puerility, and you will not suffer your age to be but a 
second infancy. The toys and baubles of your childhood are hardly now 
more below you, than those toys of our riper and our declining years, the 
drums and rattles of ambition, and the dirt and bubbles of avarice. At 
this time, when you are cut off from a little society, and made a citizen of 
the world at large, you should bend your talents, not to serve a party or a 
few, but all mankind. Your genius should mount above that mist in which 
its participation and neighbourhood with earth long involved it ; to shine 
abroad, and to Heaven, ought to be the business and the glory of your 
present situation. Remember it was at such a time that the greatest 
lights of antiquity dazzled and blazed the most, in their retreat, in their 
exile, or in their death. But why do I talk of dazzling or blazing ? — it was 
then that they did good, that they gave light, and that they became guides 
to mankind.' — Alexander Pope. 

' It is impossible, from the nature and circumstances of humankind, that 
the multitude should be philosophers, or that they should know things in 
their causes. We see every day that the rules, or conclusions alone, are 
sufficient for the shopkeeper to state his account, the sailor to navigate his 
ship, or the carpenter to measure his timber ; none of which understand the 
theory, that is to say, the grounds and reasons either of arithmetic or 
geometry. Even so in moral, political, and religious matters, it is manifest 
that the rules and opinions early imbibed at the first dawn of under- 
standing, and without the least glimpse of science, may yet produce 
excellent effects, and be very useful to the world ; and that, in fact, they 
are so, will be very visible to every one who shall observe what passetb 
round about him.' — Geobge Berkeley. 
• S* 


1760-1800. — Of the several styles already defined, two — 
the synthetic and the analytic — chiefly demand notice. Plain 
or ordinary prose is freely employed by many writers, and is, 
therefore, not characteristic. Artistic periods and harmonious 
paragraphs are proportionately rare. Since Dryden's time 
several writers have preferred synthetic modes, and variety 
has been produced by the freedom naturally belonging to 
English literature, but its general tendency has been analytic. 
The writings of Johnson, Robertson, and Gibbon belong to 
the time here noticed, but these are mostly studied produc- 
tions, and do not represent ordinary modes of construction. 
In Hume synthetic periods of moderate extent are connected 
with prose of an ordinary type, and the general result is 
pleasing. Goldsmith's prose is classic and beautiful, though, 
like Addison's, not always minutely correct. With regard to 
force of expression, Burke is the greatest prose writer of his 
time. His language is often made remarkable by antithesis, 
but has generally freedom, variety, and harmony, and is 
rightly called classic. 

' On him that appears to pass through things temporal -with no other 
care than not to lose finally the things eternal, I look with such veneration 
as inclines me to approve his conduct in the whole, without a minute 
examination of its parts ; yet I could never forbear to wish, that while Vice 
is every day multiplying seducements, and stalking forth with more 
hardened effrontery, Virtue would not withdraw the influence of her pre- 
sence, or forbear to assert her natural dignity by open and undaunted per- 
severance in the right. Piety practised in solitude, like the flower that 
blooms in the desert, may give its fragrance to the winds of heaven, and 
delight those unbodied spirits that survey the works of Grod and the actions 
of men ; but it bestows no assistance upon earthly beings, and, however 
free from taints of impurity, yet wants the sacred splendour of beneficence.* 
— Samuel Johnson. 

* Those who cast their eye on the general revolutions of society, will find 
that, as almost all improvements of the human mind had reached nearly to 
their state of perfection about the age of Augustus, there was a sensible 
decline from that point or period ; and men thenceforth gradually relapsed 
into ignorance and barbarism. The unlimited extent of the Eoman 
Empire, and the consequent despotism of its monarchs, extinguished all 
emulation, debased the generous spirits of men, and depressed the noble 
flame by which all the refined arts must be cherished and enlivened. The 
military government which soon succeeded, rendered even the lives and 
properties of men insecure and precarious ; and proved destructive to those 
vulgar and more necessary arts of agriculture, manufactures, and commerce ; 
and, in the end, to the military art and genius itself, by which alone the 
immense fabric of the empire could be supported. The irruption of the 
barbarous nations, which soon followed, overwhelmed all human knowledge, 
which was already far in its decline ; and men sunk every age deeper into 
ignorance, stupidity, and superstition ; till the light of ancient science and 
history had very nearly suffered a total extinction in all the European 
nations.' — David Humk. 

PROSE writers: 1800-1860. 259 

' In this situation, man has called in the friendly assistance of philo- 
sophy, and Heaven, seeing the incapacity of that to console him, has given 
him the aid of religion. The consolations of philosophy are very amusing 
but often fallacious. . . . Philosophy is weak ; but religion comforts in a 
higher strain. Man is here, it tells us, fitting up his mind, and preparing 
it fcr another abode. "When the good man leaves the body, and is all a 
glorious mind, he -will find he has been making himself a heaven of 
happiness here ; while the wretch that has been maimed and contami- 
nated by his vices shrinks from his body with terror, and finds that he has 
anticipated the vengeance of Heaven. To religion, then, we must hold, in 
every circumstance of life, for our truest comfort ; for if already we are 
happy, it is a pleasure to think that we can make that happiness unending ; 
and if we are miserable, it is very consoling to think that there is a place 
of rest. Thus to the fortunate religion holds out a continuance of bliss ; 
to the wretched, a change from pain.' — Oliver Gtoldsmith. 

'As long as you have the wisdom to keep the sovereign authority of this 
country as the sanctuary of liberty, the sacred temple consecrated to our 
common faith, wherever the chosen race and sons of England worship 
freedom, they will turn their faces towards you. The more they multiply, 
the more friends you will have ; the more ardently they love liberty, the 
more perfect will be their obedience. Slavery they can have anywhere. It 
is a weed that grows in every soil. They may have it from Spain, they 
may have it from Prussia ; but until you become lost to all feeling of your 
true interest and your natural dignity, freedom they can have from none 
but you. This is the commodity of price, of which you have the monopoly. 
This is the true act of navigation, which binds you to the commerce of the 
colonies, and through them secures to you the commerce of the world. 
Deny them this participation of freedom, and you break that sole bond 
which originally made, and must still preserve, the unity of the empire. 
!Do not entertain so weak an imagination, as that your registers and your 
bonds, your affidavits and your sufferances, your coquets and your clearances, 
are what form the great securities of your commerce. Do not dream that 
your letters of office, and your instructions, and your suspending clauses, 
are the things that hold together the great contexture of this mysterious 
whole. These things do not make your government. Dead instruments, 
passive tools as they are, it is the spirit of the English communion that 
gives all their life and efiicacy to them. It is the spirit of the English 
constitution which, infused through the mighty mass, pervades, feeds, 
unites, invigorates, vivifies every part of the empire, even down to the 
minutest member.' — Edmund Burke. 

1800-1860. — In the structure of periods, tlie general ten- 
dency of modem English literature is analytic ; but some re- 
markable exceptions should be noticed here. It will of course 
be understood that the terms * synthetic 'and * analytic ' are 
not employed in this place with the strictness that belpngs to 
mathematical science. In writing, a synthetic style must to 
some extent be analytic, or it could not be clear ; on the other 
hand, a style called analytic must be also synthetic, at least so 
far as it puts words together. The term 'simple,' already 
ijpticed, does not describe ai^ analytic style. In syntax a 

8 2 


sentence like ' It rains ' is called simple, because it contains 
only one verb ; but the following is also a simple sentence : — 

' Decius, tired of writing books adapted to the learned only, 
popular question, -with many points of practical interest in it, for the pur- 
pose of bringing into useful exercise all the deptb and clearness of thought 
accraing from habits of mind long clierished by philosophical studies.' — 
MoEELL, The Aiialysis of Sentences. 

This is a simple sentence, for it contains but one verb ; but 
it is obviously not intended to represent the analytic style of 
modern literature. Where phrases and clauses proportionately 
numerous are inserted to modify a principal sentence, where 
two or more principal sentences so modified are connected, and 
where long periods so constructed are often employed, the 
style is synthetic. The sentence just ended is synthetic, for 
three clauses are there used to make one assertion definite ; 
but the occasional use of such a sentence does not make a 
synthetic style. The traits of that style are these : — frequent 
uses of long complex sentences, and of such periods as are 
both complex and compound. The synthetic style thus defined 
may with care be made clear ; but writing in an analytic style 
is a far easier task. Here comparatively few phrases and 
clauses are used to modify principal sentences, and the princi- 
pal sentences thus modified are not often so connected as to 
make long periods. Given any fair number of pages, the 
difierence of the two styles may be shown by the simple pro- 
cess of counting the full stops. Thus in several pages written 
by Jeffrey only thirty full stops are counted, while Macaulay, 
in the same number of pages, makes use of more than fifty. 
Gibbon uses many sentences of moderate length, but his style 
is on the whole synthetic. Macaulay introduces here and 
there a long sentence, but his style is mainly analytic. 

The writers of the time here noticed may, with regard to 
syntax, be divided into two classes — one exceptional, the other 
representing a general tendency. To the former class belong 
Hall, Wordsworth, Jeffrey, Hallam, Arnold, and Newman^ 
whose styles are mostly synthetic; and two — Southey and 
Irving — whose writings have the variety and harmony of the 
style called classic. In his well-known ' Life of Nelson ' 
Southey' s variety is well shown, when the ordinary prose of 
the opening chapter is set in contrast with the more synthetic 
style of the conclusion. Irving's prose is not in all respects to 
be classed with Southey's, but has varied and harmonious 
traits too little cared for at the present time. Excepting 
Macaulay, all the authors here named may, with regard to 

PROSE writers: 1800-1860. 261 

their syntax, be placed in one class. Their styles, however 
various, are alike in one respect ; they do not represent the 
general tendency of their time. That tendency is clearly ex- 
emplified in the writings of Macaulat. 

'Freedom, driven from every spot on the continent, has sought an 
asylum in a country which she always chose for her favourite abode ; but 
she is pursued even here, and threatened with destruction. The inun- 
dation of lawless power, after covering the whole earth, threatens to follow 
us here ; and we are most exactly, most critically placed, in the only 
aperture where it can be successfully repelled — in the Thermopylae of the 
universe. As far as the interests of freedom are concerned— the most im- 
portant by far of sublunary interests — you, my countrymen, stand in the 
capacity of the federal representatives of the human race ; for with you it 
is to determine (under Grod) in what condition the latest posterity shall be 
born ; their fortunes are intrusted to your care, and on your conduct at this 
moment depends the colour and complexion of their destiny. If liberty, 
after being extinguished on the continent, is suffered to expire here, whence 
is it ever to emerge in the midst of that thick night that will invest it ? It 
remains with you, then, to decide whether that freedom, at whose voice the 
kingdoms of Europe awoke from the sleep of ages, to run a career of virtuous 
emulation in everything great and good ; the freedom which dispelled the 
mists of superstition, and invited the nations to behold their God ; whose 
magic touch kindled the rays of genius, the enthusiasm of poetry, and the 
flame of eloquence ; the freedom which poured into our lap opulence and 
arts, and embellished life with innumerable institutions and improvements, 
till it became a theatre of wonders ; it is for you to decide whether this 
freedom shall yet survive, or be covered with af uneral pall, and wrapt in 
eternal gloom.' — Robert Hall. 

' Poetry is the breath and finer spirit of all knowledge ; it is the im- 
passioned expression which is in the countenance of all science. Emphati- 
cally may it be said of the poet, as Shakspeare hath said of man, " that he 
looks before and after." He is the rock of defence for human nature ; an 
Tipholder and preserver, carrying everywhere with him relationship and 
love. In spite of difference of soil and climate, of language and manners, 
of laws and customs ; in spite of things silently gone out of mind, and 
things violently destroyed ; the poet binds together by passion and know- 
ledge the vast empire of human society, as it is spread over the whole 
earth, and over all time. The objects of the poet's thoughts are every- 
where ; though the eyes and senses of man are, it is true, his favourite 
guides, yet he will follow wheresoever he can find an atmosphere of sensa- 
tion in which to move his wings. Poetry is the first and last of all know- 
ledge — it is as immortal as the heart of man.' — William Woedsworth. 

• It has always been our opinion, that the real essence of poetry — apart 
from the pathos, the wit, or the brilliant description which may be embodied 
in it, but may equally exist in prose — consists in the fine perception, the 
vivid expression of that subtle and mysterious analogy which exists between 
the physical and the moral world, which makes outward things and qualities 
the natural types and emblems of inward gifts and emotions, and leads us 
to ascribe life and sentiment to everything that interests us in the aspect 
of external nature.' — Fkancis Jeffrey. 

' When a mere child, he strayed a birds'-nesting from his grandmother's 
^use in company with a cow-bojK the 4inner-hoar elapsed ; he was 


absent, and could not be found ; and the alarm of the family became very 
great, for they apprehended that he might have been carried oif by gipsies. 
At length, after search had been made for him in various directions, he was 
discovered alone, sitting composedly by the side of a brook which he could 
not get over. " I wonder, child," said the old lady when she saw him, " that 
hunger and fear did not drive you home." " Fear, grandmama ! " replied the 
future hero ; " I never saw fear. What is it ? " Once, after the winter 
holidays, when he and his brother William had set off on horseback to 
return to school, they came back, because there had been a fall of snow ; 
and William, who did not much like the journey, said it was too deep for 
them to venture on. " If that be the case," said the father, " you certainly 
shall not go ; but make another attempt, and I will leave it to your honour. 
If the road is dangerous you may return : but remember, boys, I leave it to 
your honour." The snow was deep enough to have afforded them a 
reasonable excuse ; but Horatio was not to be prevailed upon to turn back, 
" We must go on," said he : " remember, brother, it was left to our honour." 

* There were some fine pears growing in the schoolmaster's garden, which 
the boys regarded as lawful booty, and in the highest degree tempting ; btit 
the boldest among them were afraid to venture for the prize. Horatio 
volunteered upon this service : he was lowered down at night from the 
bedroom window by some sheets, plundered the tree, was drawn up with 
the pears, and then distributed them among his school-fellows, without 
reserving any for himself. ''He only took them," he said, " because every 
other boy was afraid." ' — Egbert Southey. 

' The victory of Trafalgar was celebrated indeed with the usual forms 
of rejoicing, but they were without joy ; for such already was the glory of 
the British navy, through Nelson's surpassing genius, that it scarcely 
seemed to receive any addition from the most signal victory that ever was 
achieved upon the seas ; and the destruction of this mighty fleet, by which 
all the maritime schemes of France were totally frustrated, hardly appeared 
to add to our security or strength ; for while Nelson was living to watch 
the combined squadrons of the enemy, we felt ourselves as secure as now, 
when they were no longer in existence. 

* There was reason to suppose, from the appearances upon opening his 
body, that in the course of nature he might have attained, like his father, 
to a good old age. Yet he cannot be said to have fallen prematurely whose 
work was done ; nor ought he to be lamented, who died so full of honours, 
and at the height of human fame. The most triumphant death is that of 
the martyr ; the most awful, that qf the martyred patriot ; the most 
splendid, that of the hero in the hour of victory ; and if the chariot and 
the horses of fire had been vouchsafed for Nelson's translation, he could 
scarcely have departed in a brighter blaze of glory.' — Egbert Southey. 

' The feudal constitution was little adapted for the defence of a mighty 
kingdom, far less for schemes of conquest. But as it prevailed alike in 
several adjacent countries, none had anything to fear from the military 
superiority of its neighbours. It was this inefficiency of the feudal militia, 
perhaps, that saved Europe, during the middle ages, from the danger of 
universal monarchy. In times when princes had little notions of confede- 
racies for mutual protection, it is hard to say what might not have been the 
successes of an Otho, a Frederic, or a Philip Augustus, if they could have 
wielded the whole force of their subjects whenever their ambition required. 
If an empire equally extensive with that of Charlemagne, and supported by 
military despotism, had been formed about the twelfth or thirteenth cen- 

PROSE "WRITERS: 1800-1860. 263 

turies, the seeds of commerce and liberty, just then beginning to shoot, 
would have perished ; and Europe, reduced to a barbarous servitude, might 
have fallen before the free barbarians of Tartary.' — Henry Halxam. 

* There are few writers for whom the reader feels such personal kindness 
as for Oliver Goldsmith, for few have so eminently possessed the magic gift 
of identifying themselves with their writings. We read his character in 
every page, and grow into familiar intimacy with him as we read. The 
artless benevolence that beams through his works ; the whimsical yet 
amiable views of human life and human nature; the unforced humour, 
blending so happily with good feeling and good sense, and singularly 
dashed at times with a pleasing melancholy; even the very nature of his 
mellow, flowing, and softly-tinted style — all seem to bespeak his moral as 
well as his intellectual qualities, and make us love the man, at the same 
time that we admire the author.' — Washington Ibving. 

'Scipio could not be like Caesar. His mind rose above the state of 
things around him ; his spirit was solitary and kingly ; he was cramped by 
living among those as his equals whom he felt fitted to guide as from some 
higher sphere ; and he retired at last to Liternum, to breathe freely, to 
enjoy the simplicity of his childhood, since he could not fulfil his natural 
calling to be a hero-king. So far he stood apart from his countrymen — 
admired, reverenced, but not loved. But he could not shake off all the 
influences of his time : the virtue, public and private, which still existed at 
Rome — the reverence paid by the wisest and best men to the religion of 
their fathers — were elements too congenial to his nature not to retain their 
hold on it : they cherished that nobleness of soul in him, and that faith in 
the invisible and divine, which two centuries of growing unbelief rendered 
almost impossible in the days of Caesar. Yet how strange must the con- 
flict be when faith is combined with the highest intellectual power, and its 
appointed object is no better than paganism ! Longing to believe, yet re- 
pelled by palpable falsehood — crossed inevitably with snatches of unbelief, 
in which hjrpocrisy is ever close at the door — it breaks out desperately, as 
it may seem, into the region of dreams and visions, and mysterious com- 
munings with the invisible, as if longing to find that food in its own crea- 
tions which no outward objective truth offers to it,' — Thomas Aknoxd. 

' Poetry, I conceive, whatever be its metaphysical essence, or however 
various may be its kinds, whether it more properly belongs to action or to 
suffering — nay, whether it is more at homo with society or with nature, 
whether its spirit is seen to best advantage in Homer or in Virgil — at any 
rate is always the antagonist to science. As science makes progress in any 
subject-matter, poetry recedes from it. The two cannot stand together ; 
they belong respectively to two modes of viewing things, which are contra- 
dictory to each other. The mission of science is to destroy ignorance, 
doubt, surmise, suspense, illusions, fears, deceits, according to the " Felix 
qui potuit rerum cognoscere eaicsas " of the poet, whose whole passage, by 
the way, may be taken as drawing out the contrast between the poetical and 
the scientific. But as to the poetical, very different is the frame of mind 
which is necessary for its perception. It demands as its primary condition 
that we should not put ourselves above the objects in which it resides, but 
at their feet ; that we should feel them to be above and beyond us, that we 
should look up to them, and that, instead of fancying that we can compre- 
hend them, we should take for granted that we are surrounded and compre- 
hended by them ourselves. It implies that we understand them to be vast, 
. immeasurable, impenetrable, inscrutable, mysterious so that at best we are 


only forming conjectures about them, not conclusions ; for the phenomena 
which they present admit of many explanations, and we cannot know the 
true one.' — John Henry Newman. 

' On the morning of Wednesday, the 13th of February [1689], the court 
of "Whitehall and all the neighbouring streets were filled with gazers. The 
magnificent Banqueting House, the master-piece of Inigo, embellished by 
master-pieces of Kubens, had been prepared for a great ceremony. The 
walls were lined by the yeomen of the guard. Near the northern door, on 
the right hand, a large number of Peers had assembled. On the left were 
the Commons with their Speaker, attended by the mace. The southern 
door opened ; and the Prince and Princess of Orange, side by side, entered, 
and took their places under the canopy of state. Both Houses approached, 
bowing low. William and Mary advanced a few steps. Halifax on the 
right, and Powle on the left stood forth ; and Halifax spoke. The Con- 
vention, he said, had agreed to a resolution which he prayed their High- 
nesses to hear. They signified their assent ; and the clerk of the House of 
Lords read, in a loud voice, the Declaration of Eight. When he had con- 
cluded, Halifax, in the name of all the Estates of the Kealm, requested the 
Prince and Princess to accept the crown.' — Lord Macauiay. [The passage 
given here has been selected as a specimen of the writer's extreme analytic 
style. His less analytic passages have been noticed. In many of these 
passages the sentences of which they consist are made comparatively long 
by several formal repetitions of one element — for example, by formal repe- 
titions of a clause serving as an object. In other instances a long compound 
sentence is made by writing, without a full stop, a series of short inde- 
pendent sentences. The next quotation is an example of this class.] 

' Ask a follower of Bacon what the new philosophy, as it was called, 
in the time of Charles the Second, has effected for mankind ; and his 
answer is ready. It has lengthened life, it has mitigated pain, it has ex- 
tinguished diseases ; it has increased the fertility of the soil ; it has given 
new securities to the mariner ; it has furnished new arms to the warrior ; 
it has spanned great rivers and estuaries with bridges of form unknown to 
our fathers ; it has guided the thunderbolt innocuously from heaven to 
earth ; it has lighted up the night with the splendour of the day; it has 
extended the range of the human vision ; it has multiplied the power of 
the human muscle ; it has accelerated motion ; it has annihilated distance ; 
it has facilitated intercourse, correspondence, all friendly offices, all dis- 
patch of business ; it has enabled man to descend to the depths of the sea, 
to soar into the air, to penetrate securely into the noxious recesses of the 
earth, to traverse the earth on cars which whirl along without horses, and 
the ocean with ships which sail against the wind.' — Lord Macatjlay. 


Some prefatory remarl^s and definitions of terms here serve 
to introduce an extensive and classified series of examples 
selected from English prose writers. These examples repre- 
sent the main facts of onr practical syntax. Rules or general 
observations follow, and these are given as results of induction 
— valid only so far as they are found accordant with the con- 
structions of general literature. It will be useful to notice 


first some general conclusions. The tendency of onr ordinary- 
prose is mostly analytic, and its chief rules of syntax are those 
respecting order ; these chief rules are few, but the observa- 
tions required respecting many constructions of words and 
phrases are proportionately numerous. The conclusions here 
noticed in a prefatory way will be tested by many references 
to that general literature on which true rules of syntax are 
founded. It is understood that reading should be the first 
course in learning syntax, and that the study of rules should 
follow. In the whole process of education, nothing can be 
worse than an inversion of this order. 

Excerpts already given have shown that, in English syn- 
tax, the uses of inflexions are subordinate matters, as com- 
pared with the importance belonging to sequences of words, 
phrases, and clauses. To show this no reasonings are re- 
quired. It will be enough to compare with some pages 
written by Lord Clarendon a like number written by Lord 
Macaulat. One is careless, the other careful, of order ; hence 
their chief difference, so far as syntax is concerned. The 
latter is nearly always clear ; the former is often obscure. 
The chief rules of order have been more or less observed since 
the time of Hooker, and obedience has been made easier by a 
change that has taken place since his time — mostly since the 
close of the seventeenth century. The general tendency of 
ordinary prose has since that time been analytic. Exceptions 
are seen in the writings of the past, and in some productions 
of the present age ; but the general conclusion given here is 
based upon an extensive induction. Periods and other long 
sentences have become rare ; modem prose likes short sen- 
tences and numerous fall stops. In a word, its tendency is 

The term ' analytic ' is here employed as comparative, and the term 
* synthetic ' applies to every style, clear or obscure, in which long sentences 
are rather numerous. 

The prevalence of the analytic style is in our own day 
remarkable, but the style itself is not new. Short sentences 
are abundant in Bishop Hall, Earle, Heylin, and Fuller — 
writers of the seventeenth century. Dryden, in the latter 
half of that century, wrote fluent and versatile prose, in which 
short sentences are proportionately numerous. In the eight- 
eenth century De Foe and Fielding made free use of short 
sentences, and their styles, though various to a considerable 
extent, may be classed with ordinary analytic prose. In the 
f)resent age short sentences — inch as may be easily classified — 


are made prominent in many books, and in several journals, 
literary and political, having a wide circulation. Our ordinary 
prose is thus made easy to write, and as it is seldom read 
aloud, its want of modulation is not cared for. The age is 
practical, not artistic. Here and there analytic prose, hard 
and sharp in outline, and more or less polished, might be de- 
scribed as a style distinct from that called ' ordinary ; ' but the 
distinction may here be set aside ; and, with respect to their 
frequent uses of short sentences, the two styles may be treated 
as one. The term ' ordinary ' has in this place no reference to 
any traits higher than those noticed by a writer on syntax. 
Nothing is said of the excellence that may belong to an ordi- 
nary style. 

Synthetic prose is still written, but represents now no 
general tendency. Of all the long sentences here and there 
employed in recent literature, few have an artistic form of 
structure. Many sentences are made long merely by means of 
formal, not verbal, repetitions, such as will be defined in 
another place. These serial sentences are sometimes appro- 
priately employed in passages of a descriptive kind. In other 
places they sometimes serve as mere catalogues of topics, too 
many to be distinctly treated. 

Sequences consisting of short sentences connected with 
others more extended make a varied style, and a varied style 
has sometimes beauty like that observed in the composition of 
artistic music. But variety or modulation is only one of all 
the fine traits to be noticed in the writings of Addison, Gold- 
smith, and SOUTHET. Prose writers of their class are, like 
poets, bom, not made. Poets have often written beautiful 

Three styles have been chiefly noticed — the analytic, the 
synthetic, and the varied. The first is called * ordinary,' not 
with a meaning of depreciation, but with reference to the pre- 
valence of that style in modem literature. The examples that 
might be quoted are innumerable. Many will be given in 
connection with classified rules and observations. 

A summary review of the prose written from the time of 
HoOKEK to the present shows that a great alteration has been 
made in our habitual modes of constructing sentences. The 
alteration has been made, for the most part, since the time 
when synthetic prose was written by Baeeow, and by nine or 
ten among the greatest of his cotemporaries. Since that 
time the main tendency of style has been analytic. The cmise 
cannot be fully explored here, but may be suggested as a subject 


of inquiry. Id our time the analytic tendency of science is 
cotemporaneous with, a like tendency in writing prose. In 
science observations of differences and likenesses proceed step 
by step toward definition and classification. One observation 
is made at a time. Everything is sharply defined. Apart 
from conclusions based upon induction nothing is taken for 
granted, and as far as possible all collateral notions called 
' subjective ' are suppressed. This process is the opposite of 
our old style of syntax, where a period might include half a 
dozen matters, each liable to be called in question. The 
difference has already been shown by contrasting some sen- 
tences written by Hooker with others written by Lord 

Analytic modes of construction are cognate with the 
tendencies of science. Clearness like that demanded in 
science is the first quality now commended. There must be 
light everywhere, though it be the light of winter, making 
visible the structure of trees stripped of fohage and bearing no 
fruit. Clearness is an effect of contrast, and for contrast a 
sentence consisting of two parts, divided in meaning by the 
use of ' hut' serves often as an energetic and ready form. 
Cautious controversy — distinct from mere declamation — has, 
with respect to style, a tendency like that of science. Less is 
taken for granted. Assertions are often timidly expressed, 
and are so well guarded that carefulness becomes at last tire- 
some. In extreme instances prose has a rigidity that would 
be appropriate in a treatise on some special point of law, or in 
a minute description of some mechanism. Courage, freedom, 
and variety are to be classed with the best qualities belonging 
to the literature of the past ; but carefulness, precision, and 
consequently clearness, are the traits most prominent in many 
excellent specimens of the prose written in the present age. 
In several political journals the prose here described is in its 
right place, is well adapted to its topics, and is excellently 

Certain modes of expression correspond with certain mental 
habits, and it is clear that one of two cotemporaneous ten- 
dencies may serve at least to confirm the other. One of the 
best rules to be observed in writings of a didactic kind is 
equivalent to the first of all the rules to be observed by the 
student of any science — fix your attention on one point ; 
mark its differences, and define as closely as possible its indi- 
viduality. In poetry, on the contrary, the first rule — or say 
'rather, in8tinct--is to find likenesses everywhere, and, as far 


as possible, ' to draw all things to one.' It seems at least 
probable that, in an age eminently scientific, general literature 
may echo tones first heard in lectures on science ; for we know 
that formerly, in a time remarkable for a superabundance of 
poetry, the prose of the period was to a great extent written 
in a poetical style. In that time — the latter half of the six- 
teenth century — one style of prose, greatly admired, had the 
exuberant diction then admired in verse. In the next century, 
Bareow had among his cotemporaries nine or ten authors 
whose style was, like his own, synthetic ; but they were not 
his imitators. Their style was closely associated with their 
own favourite studies, and was a characteristic of their time, 
when those studies were greatly prevalent. There was in the 
eighteenth century a widespread tendency to diminish the 
amount of all that had been based on authority, and, cotem- 
poraneous with that tendency, there was an increase of neat- 
ness and elegance in writing prose. There was less to be 
said, and accordingly it was said more readily. The English 
style of that time was imitated by several German authors. 
In the nineteenth century, the short sentences of our analytic 
prose are cotemporaneous with our widespread 'rudiments 
of popular science.' These words denote, of course, nothing 
more than such ' rudiments of science ' as may be readily and 
commonly understood. Science has two circles, an inner and 
an outer. Words spoken in the former are in the latter 
vaguely echoed, but their tendency is to some extent appre- 
hended. Imitation follows ; and the style well adapted to 
topics strictly scientific is made wearisome when its echoes 
are heard almost everywhere. In a word, the analytic style 
that rightly belongs to science has, to a considerable extent, 
affected the style of our modern general literature. Other 
causes of alteration might be noticed, but of modern innova- 
tions the chief is an affectation of scientific precision. 

Constructions of sentences and uses of words are from 
time to time affected by alterations of fashion, while all that 
in our syntax is permanent is based on the habits and tradi- 
tions of general literature. The term general, as here em- 
ployed, should be defined. It might be rather narrowly 
defined as a term applied to the collected prose writings ot 
such authors as these: — Drtden, Addison, Goldsmith, Southey, 
and Macaulay. But this term 'general,' as applied to litera- 
ture, should be more liberally defined ; accordingly, an attempt 
is here made to give the wider definition required. All the 
people speaking one tongue may, with regard to their Ian- 


guage, be divided into three classes. The first is the large 
class, having no literary culture. Their words, including 
many old forms, are often interesting, but their syntax does 
not show the freedom and variety of English. On the other 
hand, there is a comparatively small class of writers on science. 
They have their own special vocabularies, while they employ 
to a considerable extent the syntax of general literature ; but 
their writings, when strictly scientific, do not show the free- 
dom and variety of English. Its wealth of words and its rules 
of syntax are shown by our best writers in general literature, 
and this, liberally defined, includes such writings as the fol- 
lowing: — poetry, imaginative prose, readable histories and 
biographies, well- written accounts of voyages and travels, and 
the essays and reviews contained in several excellent journals, 
literary and political, having a wide circulation. These 
writings, taken altogether, form the body of our general 
literature. With regard to language, the main tendency of 
this literature is conciliatory, connecting the past with the 
present, and the language of culture with interests as wide as 
society itself. Literary culture is thus made in several im- 
portant respects conservative. Writers die, but their best 
works live, and in these writings old words, phrases, and 
modes of construction are preserved. Thus the conservative 
power of literature resists, to a considerable extent, the in- 
fluence of that mutability to which every living tongue is 
liable. But however durable the forms of literary culture, the 
destiny of a living tongue is mutability. Forms of speech 
have not the durability of those sculptured in marble. While 
we are writing of certain constructions, they are becoming 
more and more obsolete, and the outlines we would faithfully 
portray are fading away while we are looking at them. All 
that an historical and inductive writer on syntax can do is to 
define forms comparatively permanent, and draw, between the 
old and the new, some lines of demarcation. Books called 
' monuments ' grow old in style, though not in substance. 
The Bible of the seventeenth century had even then an antique 
tone, and for its interpretation the aid of a special annotated 
vocabulary is now required. 

The facts already noticed indicate not only the general 
design of the syntax following, but also the subdued tones of 
several assertions given in the shape of * rules.' The treatment 
of syntax is here inductive, and its * rules ' are therefore com- 
paratively few ; but examples and special observations of facts 
are proportionately numerous. The authorities referred to are 


not reasonings, but facts, and these are found in general litera- 
ture. It is everywhere taken for granted that our best au- 
thors, though here and there careless, have on the whole 
written good English. They are our teachers. A gram- 
marian's highest aim is to make clear, by means of analysis 
and classification, the constructions that our best writers have 
made comparatively permanent. These are our rules of syn- 

Two brief examples of induction are given here. (1.) The old prepo- 
sition anent is fallen into disuse, and one of several substitutes is the 
phrase as to. Is it correct ? Eeasonings can say nothing here, but refe- 
rences to many authors will show that the phrase is often used. (2.) 
Where an adjective-clause begins with which, the antecedent should be 
a word, and should not be remote. Otherwise a false reference may ap- 
pear. Ex. : ' I allude to the article " Blind," in the Encyclopedia Bri- 
tannica, published at Edinburgh in 1783, which was written by him.' — 
Mackenzie, Life of BlacklocJc. Is the rule absolute ? Almost ; but the 
following excerpt may be noticed : — ' Throughout the whole of those lives 
[of English Poets] there appears an assumiotion of superiority in the bio- 
grapher over the subjects of his labours, which diminishes the idea of their 
talents.' — Eoscoe, Life of Pope. 

It has been said English Syntax should be inductively 
studied. This remark does not imply that induction is the 
sole basis of knowledge. If such a thesis could be maintained, 
this would not be its place ; for that thesis is general. Here 
the special subject is English Syntax, and respecting this 
alone the proposition is submitted, that rules should be founded 
on many concordant examples. There are ' rules ' not gene- 
rally observed, ' rules ' not confirmed by respectable evidences, 
and ' rules ' of which good authors have apparently known 
little or nothing. [See § 58.] On the other hand, there are 
seen in literature constructions of which little is said in our 
numerous ' rules.' These observations lead to such conclusions 
as the following: — that many examples should be given, 
that these should be classified, so that they may be readily 
found, and that rules should serve as symbols of many con- 
cordant examples. One apparent objection may be named. 
There are classed with good authors several who knew metho- 
dically little or nothing of syntax; indeed, they wrote well 
because their genius was not confined within the bounds of 
very strict rules. As verse has been well written by men who 
did not study rules of prosody, so prose has been well written 
by men who hardly ever thought of sjnatax. It is obviously 
true ; but if urged here as an objection, it is quite out of 
place. Its opposite would be a general thesis, to the efiect 


that all knowledge must be acquired by studying rules. Here 
that notion is not for a moment entertained. Again and 
again it has been refuted. There are, of course, errors to be 
found in our best writers ; but in many respects their modes 
of construction are cognate and concordant. Yet it is not to 
be supposed that their concords have always been studied. 
That notion, shown to be false by the theory and history of 
poetry and music, is also refuted by the history of literature. 

Reading is the best method of studying syntax. But there 
are certain aids that may be supplied in a treatise on Gram- 
mar. Examples found scattered in many books may be col- 
lected and classified. Our knowledge of liberties allowed by 
traditional usage will guard us against pedantry, and the ob- 
servance of a few good rules will make our confidence secure. 
Inquirers will find here in fairly selected examples answers 
that cannot be always well given in the shape of concise 
rules ; they will find, above all, that tame formality is a thing 
not cognate with the genius of our literature. On the whole, 
our best authors have respected traditional order, while they 
have also loved freedom. 

An eclectic list of prose writers is appended, but is not 
intended to represent all the wealth of our literature. The 
general aim is to name writers in all departments of general 
literature, and to indicate the times to which their works 
severally belong. Their traits of style are mostly noticed 
only so far as to point out one formal trait in each instance ; 
but here and there an asterisk follows the name of a vn^iter 
whose style has often been called admirable. The list con- 
tains the names of several authors rightly called ' great ; ' but 
it is not to be understood that writers not named in this 
place are therefore regarded as having inferior claims. The 
date preceding an author's name shows the year of his birth, 
and the date following shows the year of his decease. The 
abbreviations used are, of course, not intended to show the 
best traits of the writers named, but have meanings closely 
restricted, o indicates nothing more than the fact that many 
sentences comparatively short may be readily found in the 
writer's prose ; s indicates that long periods, or long sentences, 
occur, and V that many short sentences are connected with 
others more extended. The abbreviation [trans.'i shows that 
a work is a translation. After each author's name a specimen 
or a collection of his writings is named. In one place [.<' 
indicates a doubt respecting the authorship of a tract. [Am. 
shows that certain books belong to American literature. 






SiK John Mandbville 



John Wycliffe 



John of Trevisa 



Geoffbey Chaucer 



Sir John Fortescue 



Eobert Fabian 


John Fisher 



Hugh Latimer 



William Tyndale 


Sir Thomas More 



Sir Thomas Elyot 


John Knox 





] .5.^0 

William Harrison 


Sir James Melvil 





Sir Walter Kaleigh 



EicHARD Hooker 


Lord Bacon 


Joseph Hall 


Lord Herbert 


Thomas Hobbes 


IzAAK Walton 


James Hotvell 


John F-arle 


Lord Clarendon 


Thomas Fuller 


JoHx Milton 


Jeremy Taylor 


Eichard Baxter 


Abraham Cowley 


John Bunyan 


Sir William Temple 


John Tillotson 


Isaac Barrow 


John Dryden 


Egbert South 


Edward Stillingfleet 


Thomas Sprat 


Gilbert Burnet 


Daniel de Foe 


Jonathan Swift 

ca. 1372 

ca. 1400 
ca. 1400 



ca. 1590 






' Voiage and Travaile ' 

1 V 

[Parts of] 'The Holy 
Bible ' \trans.'\ 

' Polychronicon ' {trans.l 

i v- 

' The Persones Tale ' 


trans. .?] 

' Absolute and Limited 

! <► 

Monarchy ' 

* Concordance of Stories ' 

* Sermons ' 

' Sermons ' 


' New Testament ' \trans.^. 


' History of Eichard III.' 

' Castle of Health ' 

* Eeformation in Scot- 

land ' 

' Toxophilus ' 


' A Description of 


Britaine ' 

' Memoirs ' 

'A History of the 


Turks ' 

[Parts of] 'A History 


of the World ' 

' Ecclesiastical Polity ' 


' Essays ' 


' Sermons ' 

'Life of King Henry 



' Human Nature ' 


' Complete Angler ' 


' Familiar Letters ' 


' Essays and Characters ' 

' Hist, of the Eebellion ' 


' Worthies of England ' 

' Areopagitica ' 


' Sermons ' 


' The Saints' Eest ' 


' Essays ' 


' The Pilgrim's Progress ' 

' Essays ' 


' Sermons ' 


' Sermons ' 


'Essays,' 'Prefaces' 


' Sermons ' 


' Sermons ' 


'History of the Eoyal | 


Society' 1 

'My Own Times' 


' Eobinson Crusoe ' 


' Gulliver's Travels ' 


PROSE writers: 1300-1860. 


Sib Eichabd Stf,f,t,f. 


Parts of] 'The Tatler' 

Joseph Addison 


Tarts of] ' Tho Spec- 




* Life of Cicero ' 


George Berkeley 


'Principles of Human 
Knowledge ' 


Alexander Pope 


' Correspondence ' 


Benjamin Franklin 


* Correspondence ' [Am.'\ 

Samttel Johnson 


' The Rambler ' 


David Hume 


' History of England ' . 


Thomas Gray 


* Correspondence ' 


William Kobertson 


* History of America ' 


William Gilpin 


' Forest Scenery ' 


Junius [a ^seudonyrri] 


'To the King' [1769] 


Oliver Goldsmith 


'The Vicar of Wake- 


E»mund Burke 


' On the French Eevolu- 

' Correspondence ' 


William Cowper 



Edward Gibbon 


' Decline and Fall of the 
Eoman E.-ipire ' 


William Eoscoe 


' Lorenzo de' Medici ' 


William Cobbett 


* English Grammar ' 

KoBERT Hall 


' Sermons ' 


John Foster 


' Popular Ignorance ' 


W1LLL&.M Wordsworth 


' Prefaces ' 


Sir Walter Scott 


' Ivanhoe ' 


Samuel T. Coleridge 


* Liteiary Eemains* 


Lord Jeffrey 


' Eeviews ' 


Eobert Southey 


' Life of Nelson ' 


Charles Lamb 


'Essays of Elia' 


Henry Hallam 


* Europe during the Mid- 
dle Ages ' 


William E. Channing 


'Self-Culture' [Am.-] 

Washington Irving 




Thomas de Quincey 


' Leaders in Literature ' 


Mary K. Mitford 



Thomas Arnold 


' History of Eome ' 


Thomas Caelyle 


'Hero Worship' 


William H. Prescott 


' The Conquest of Peru ' 

' Essays 


Lord Macaulay 



John H. Newman 


' Miscellanies ' 


Lord Lytton 




Lord Stanhope 


' History of England ' 

Lord Beaconsfield 

' Coningsby ' 


Nath. Hawthorne 


'Twice-Told Tales '[^w».] 

Wm. E. Gladstone 

' Church Principles ' 


Wm. M. Thackeray 


' The Newcomes ' 

Charles Dickens 


' David Copperfield ' 


George H. Lewes 


'Life of Goethe* 


274 syntax: examples. 


Eules in English Syntax are founded on the literature 
already briefly described. Accordingly, examples selected 
from that literature here precede such general observa- 
tions as may afterwards be given in the form of rules. 
There are in English, as in other languages, numerous 
constructions — for example, many prepositional phrases — 
that must be learned by conversation and reading, while 
those parts of Syntax that may be reduced to the shape of 
sure and concise rules are comparatively few. The use of 
theory is secondary ; reading is the first course in studying 
English SjTQtax. 

By means of discords in nomenclature, the study of 
Syntax has been made more difficult than it ought to be. 
It is, therefore, first of all important to set aside several 
names of mere forms, and to see clearly the uses of the six 
elements employed in making sentences. These have 
a,lready been described, but must be briefly noticed here, 
in relation to their nomenclature and to certain uses of 
abbreviations. In a sentence where the verb is intransi- 
tive, the chief elements are two — the subject and the 
verb. But in a sentence where the verb is transitive 
three of the parts may be called chief elements — the sub- 
ject, the verb, and the object. The chief words employed 
in both these sentences serve to express the two general 
notions of substance and action. The noun denotes a 
substance, and the verb asserts that an action takes place. 
Adjuncts called attributes are used to define words de- 
noting substances, and adjuncts of two classes are used for 
defining verbs. Many verbs serve alone to make clear 
assertions. Other verbs are aided by adjuncts that Tnust 
be employed to make clear assertions. These adjuncts 
are called complements. But verbs of the former kind 
may be defined by means of such adjuncts as may be em- 
ployed, or may be omitted. These are called adverbials. 
In the observations and examples that follow, the order 
everywhiere corresponds with the order in which the ele- 
ments of sentences are here named : — 

subjects: words. 


1. Subjects. 

2. Attbibutes, 

3. Vebbs. 

4. Complements. 

5. Adverbials. 

6. Objects. 

In subdivisions, each element — excepting the verb 
itself — is distinctly treated as consisting of a word, a 
phrase, or a clause. The numbers of the paragraphs con- 
taining examples correspond with the numbers prefixed to 
the paragraphs consisting of observations. Keferences are 
thus made easy. 

In writing of syntax, tiresome repetitions of certain terms 
are avoided by using the signs shown in the table appended. 
The letter x, here denoting an adverbial, serves as a sign 
clearly distinct from a, the sign of an attribute. Here and 
there, in some notes on examples, ax indicates a phrase in 
which the two relations, attributive and adverbial, are more 
or less closely connected. Asterisks serve to point out errors 
and nnnsual or obsolete forms. 







a principal sentence 


a predicative verb 


a subject ; a word 


a complement 


a vagne word, instead of 


a complement after o 

a noun 


a complement ; a phrase 


a subject ; a phrase 


a complement ; a clause 


a subject; a clause 


an adverbial ; a word 


an attribute ; a -word 


an adverbial ; a phrase 


a vague -word used as an 


an adverbial ; a clause 


an object ; a word 


an attribute ; a phrase 


an object ; a phrase 


a connective phrase 


an object ; a clause 


an attribute ; a clause 


erroneous, or obsolete 


a verb 


: WOE 


Ohservations. — 1. The subject may be represented by any 
one of the following forms : — a noun ; a pronoun ; a word often 
used as an adjective ; or a word ending in ing. Some words 
in ing are often used as nouns, have plui-als in s, and are often 
preceded by adjectives; others are seldom placed in the re- 
lations here implied. The distinction thus made between 
read'Vng and lov-ing is the result of usage, and has no refe- 
rence to any difference of an etymological kind. Nouns in ing, 
when denoting transitive actjpns, are of course followed by 

T 2 


syntax: examples. 

objects, and so help to make phrases, which must be noticed 
in another place. 

2. In every sentence the subject must be made clear. 
This observation is made with especial reference to words 
called pronouns. The uses of pronouns should be made clear, 
and, as far as forms allow, the relations of pronouns should 
be shown with respect to gender, number, and person. 

3. Two or more words — two nouns, for example, or a 
noun and a pronoun — may be employed together, or set in 
apposition, to give emphasis or clearness to the subject. The 
latter of two nouns so placed may serve as an attribute. 
[See § 45.] 

4. Some pronouns are naturally vague in their own 
meanings, but their relations to other words, or to phrases, or 
to clauses, must always be made as clear as possible. For 
example, the pronoun it may have reference to a preceding or 
to a following noun, may refer to a cause unknown or un- 
named, may introduce several nouns, or may be set in appo- 
sition with a phrase, or with a clause. The following forms 
of pronouns all serve as subjects, but those of the latter class 
(6.) serve also as objects or as dependent words. The two 
forms thou and ye are obsolete in conversation : — 

a. I 













The compound forms myself, ourselves, and other compounds 
of self with their plurals, serve as subjects and as objects, or 
as dependent words, and himself though formally dependent, 
is often set in apposition with a subject. 

5. There are in English many vague words. Of these 
some serve instead of nouns, others as adjectives, and others 
may serve either as nouns or as adjectives. These facts have 
been made obscure by schemes of strict classification founded 
on etymology. The following words — mostly classed with 
* indefinite pronouns ' — ^may serve as subjects, or, in other 
words, may be used instead of distinct nouns : — 









others {plural) 




aught {or ought) 




naught ipr 













Here and there the. words 'nobody, nothing, and one have the 
plural forms ' nobodies,^ ^ nothings,^ and '■ones.'' The ending of 
the possessive case is sometimes added to the words another, 
nobody, and one. The old form enow (= enough) is not a 
plural form, but (like enough) may be used as an adjective, 
and may define either a singular or a plural noun. 

6. Excepting a few pronouns — already noticed — the same 
forms that serve as subjects serve also as objects, and as de- 
pendent words following prepositions. The subject, in nu- 
merous sentences, is the initial word, or stands near the be- 
ginning ; but variations of this order have always been allowed, 
and are indeed required for the sake of emphasis. 

7. In modern constructions belonging to the Imperative 
Mood the subject is mostly omitted. 

8. In E.II. ye represents the subject, while the object and 
the dependent pronoun have alike the form you ; but in M.E. 
you takes the place of ye. The Bible of the seventeenth cen- 
tury preserves many archaic forms, including the subject ye, 
as may be seen in MaUh. v. 11, 12 ; 21, 22 ; 33, 34 

9. Lastly, it maybe noticed that as any word, any syllable, 
or any letter may be made the subject of a remark, so it may 
be made the subject of a sentence. 

In the following, as in other selections, some examples, selected from 
various hooks and journals, have the signature G-. 

Examples. — 1. * Now fades the glimmering landscape from the sight.' 
— Gray. [The subject, in verse, often follows the verb, and the same 
order is often seen in prose.] ' Next this parlour lies the pigeon-house. . . . 
There are upon the ground-floor, in all, twenty-four apartments^ — Pope. 
[Prose.] ' Milton's Paradise Lost was first published in 1667.' — G. ' / 
am monarch of all / survey.' — Cowpek. * Thou art very great.' — Bible. 
[Old ; obsolete in conversation, but not in verse.] ' He lifts his head. , . . 
She dwelt among the untrodden ways.' — ^Wobdsworth. 'The rich and 
the poor shall there appear.' — Jee. Taylor. * Blue and yellow are mixed 
in this colour.' — Gr. ' The poore is but feeble.' — Langland. ' Miltoi>'s 
earlier poetical writings were collected in 1638.' — Gr. ' Writing was my 
trade.' — Gtoldsmith. * Far off his coming shone.' — Milton, * Boasting is 
no sign of self-knowledge.' — G-. ' There are two abbreviations or shorten- 
ings.^ — CoBBETT. ' The rowing of the Cambridge crew is neater than that 
of the Oxford.' — G. * Reading maketh a full man.' — Lord Bacon. [It 
will be seen in the sequel that forms in ing have the uses indicated by 8, 
a, c, X, and o.] 

2. ' They called thee " merry England " in old time.* — Wobds- 
woRTH. [They in force = the E.I. form me = men.] ' Who is the happy 
warrior ? ' — Wordsworth. [As the initial word of a query, who is naturally 
indefinite.] ' Who swerves from innocence recovers not his loss.' — Words- 
worth. [Old; Who here ss The man who.] 'In restraint wAo stifled lie, 
Shall taste the air of liberty.' — Cotton. [Here who = the men who.] 
'5© then said to his friend, *'If / d^j^not return in the course of an hour, 

278 syntax: examples. 

you must not wait for me." ' [Clear.] * ' He told his friend that, if he did not 
return in the course of an hour, lie should not wait for him.' — G. [Not clear.] 
' The oak and the apple-tree are useful ; this yields good fruit, and that strong 
timber.' — Gr. \this refers to the nearer of the two preceding nouns.] * ' For 
two years he lived there with his uncle, who died in 1770, and soon after- 
wards \he ?] went to France.' — Gr. * * They [the commons] were summoned 
by their kings, whenever they were compelled to have recourse to such aid 
as they could afford.' — G. \they ?] * * Few know how to be idle and inno- 
cent; every diversion they take is at the expense of some virtue.* \theyT\ 
* ' Astronomy and astrology differ widely ; this is a science, that a dream.' 
— G, \th%s and that should change places.] * ' After he [the king] had com- 
manded him [the bishop] to sit down by him [the king] and be covered, he 
[the king] resumed most of the heads of the sermon, and said he looked 
upon himself as chiefly touched by it. He desired him, as he [the bishop] 
had already given him the exhortation in general, so to direct him to his 
duty in that particular. ... * The bishop, astonished at this tenderness 
in so young a prince, burst forth in tears, expressing how much he [the 
bishop] was overjoyed to see such inclinations in him, but told him he [the 
bishop] must take time to think on it.' — Bp. Buenet. * *His education [Lord 
Falkland's] for some years had been in Ireland, where his father was lord- 
deputy ; so that when he [the son] returned into England,' etc. — Claeen- 
DON. * ' Its progress \i.e. the Kussian Empire's] has been slow, but it [i.e. 
the empire] is only on that account the more likely to be durable.' — Ali- 
son, [it apparently, but not truly, refers to ' progress.'] 

3. ' The Eagle, he was lord above. And Eob was lord below.' — Woeds- 
WOETH. ' Truth, simple truth, was written in his face.' — Ceabbe. ' Our 
landlord, he goes home to-night.' — Southey. * And every soul, it passed 
me by. Like the whiz of my cross-bow.' — Cojlbeidge. ' They seem them- 
selves also to enjoy their mode of life.' — Gelpin. * Oh, 'twas a siyht — that 
heaven, that child — a scene which might have well beguiled Ev'n haughty 
Eblis of a sigh.' — Mooeb. 'My banks, they are furnished with bees 
Whose murmur invites one to sleep.' — Shenstone. ' Silence and Twilight 
here, twin-sisters, keep Their noonday watch.' — Shelley. ' They knew, 
these excellent old persons, that .... they ought to have given place to 
younger men.' — Hawthoene. 

4. * It was frosty last night.' * It is an ancient mariner. . . . It was 
an Abyssinian maid.' — Coleeidge. 'Avoid indiscriminate charity. It 
is an error.' — E. A. Abbott. [Examples of it introducing phrases and 
clauses are given in the sequel.] 

5. 'All that can now be done is but little.' — G. 'All are but parts of 
one stupendous whole.' — Pope. In M.E. all = either sv or av, and, as 
sv, may be singular or plural.] ' All praise the likeness that thy skill hath 
made.' — Woedswoeth. ' Who is here so vile ? ... If any, speak ! ' — 
Shakespeaee. [In M.E. any, having reference to a person, becomes anyone, or 
anybody. In a humorous and familiar style, a body is here and there vaguely 
used instead of anybody.] ' If there is anything better to be done, name 
it! ' — G. ■* 'This werldes, welth, auht, and cat^l.' — Old Metrical Homily. 
'Is ther aught elles?' — Chatjcee. [For aught the modern spelling is 
ought.] 'Should ought impious or impure, Take friendship's name.' — 
T. H. Bayly. ' They both were now well stricken in years.' — Bible. ' Each 
will tell his own story.' [Each historically belongs to the singular, 
but is sometimes set in apposition with two nouns, and has then a use 
called 'distributive.' It is not required that two substantive words in 

* subjects: words. 279 

apposition must each have the same number.] * The oak and the elm have 
each a distinct character.' — Gilpin. ' Each [of the two men] spake words 
of high disdain And insult to his heart's best brother.' — CoLEBiDaE. 

* * Each have stamped their own impress on the character of the people.' — 
Alison. \has .... itsi] ' Each [ = Every feature'] gives each [ = everp 
other] a double charm, As pearls upon an Ethiop's arm.' — Dteb. ' Each 
[ = Everyone] must give an account of his own adventures.' • Each [of these 
two trees] has its own characteristic form.' ' Either will suit me very well.' 
' Either of these distinguished officers [two] would have been a successor 
worthy of Luxemburg.' — Macatjlay. [The modern so-called ♦ rule ' that 
either must always refer ' to one of two ' is not founded on literary history.] 
^Enough is as good as a feast.' — G-. 'We're enough! — Lobd Byeon. 
[Instead of enough the old form enow is sometimes used with a double 
meaning ; but it is not an exclusively plural form.] * * Every schuld 
an hundred knightes bryng.' — Chaucee. [Old ; in M.E. every is employed as 
an adjective.] ' Everybody must respect his neighbour's rights.' [Correct.] 
' A few who were present were in the secret.' — G. * Few know how to 
be idle and innocent.' — Addison. ' Few, few shall part where many meet.' 
— Campbell. * Are there few that be saved ? ' — Bible. ' Little can be 
said in favour of that scheme.' — G. ' Many will say to me in that day. 
. . . Many that are first shall be last. . . . Many are called but/ew [are] 
chosen.' — Bible, * More might be said of this.' [Historically more is a 
comparative form belonging to much ; but both more and most may have 
reference to number as well as to quantity.] ' Much has been said, and 
more remains to be told.' ' All these and wore came flocking.' — Milton. 

* ' Naught may declare.' — Chaucee. [' Naught else ' may be found here 
and there in modern authors, but the usual substitute for the old word 
naught is nothing.] ^Neither has anything he calls his own.' — Otway. 

* * Thersites' body is as good as Ajax', "When neither are alive.' — Shake- 
SPEAEE. \ndther, the negative form of either, should, like this word, be 
followed by a verb in the singular.] ' Of that matter nobody has spoken 
a word.' ' My right there is none to dispute.' — Cowpee. • None but the 
brave deserves the fair.' — Deyden. * None of their productions are extant.' 
— Blaie. [In M.E. none mostly = sv, and wo = av ; but in E.II. none in 
many places is used instead of no.] ' Nothing of importance has happened.' 
' An idol, saith he, is nothing' — Hobbes. * One must walk carefully here.' 

* There shall be two in the field ; the one shall be taken and the other 
left.' — Bible. * The little ones all ran to hail their friend.' — G. * Give me 
another pen; this is a bad one.' 'All our little ones are well.' ' One 
ought to do a thing oneself, if one wants it done properly.' — G. * My very 
««(/" was yours.' — Otway. [In E.I. self in often used as an adjective follow- 
ing pronouns, but in Old as in Modem English self is often employed as a 
noun.] * • It's no man's several.' — Ben Jonson. [Old ; in M.E. several 
has reference to nouns in the plural.] * The work sorne praise, and sofne the 
architect.' — Milton. * Of birds some live mostly on trees, and some on 
the ground.' 'Stop. . . . reaideTa all and some ! ' — Deyden. [Old ; the force 
of the phrase — often occurring in old literature — is equivalent to the meaning 
of 07ie and all.] ' Some thought Dunkirk, some that Ypres was his object.' 
— Macaulay. [In E.II. som, or sum, might belong to tae singular. In 
modem literature some, used as sv, or used alone as a substantive, has 
mostly a plural reference. Somebody, something, and somewhat belong to 
the singular.] ' What mxist now he done ia hardly known.' — G. [What, 
m force, often = That which.] ' Wljft is the matter ? '— G. • What'a gone, 

280 syntax: examples. 

and what's past hope, Should be past grief.' — Shakespeaee. [In many 
places the words 'what .... what' — 'partly .... partly' and are 
used as adverbial connectives. Ex. : * People died, ^partly on account of 
grief and partly for hunger.' Instead of this we have in O.E. the follow- 
ing sentence : — * ' Wat vor honger, wat vor wo, men deyde.' — Robebt of 
Gloucester. Here wat = partly.'] * ' Sche was, as who seith, a goddesse.' 
— GowER. [Here who = man in E.I., or the indefinite one in M.E. This 
vague use of who is obsolete.] ' The whole of the day was wasted.' [whole, 
here used as a noun, serves often as an adjective.] 

6. ' There is some plot against me laid.' — "Woedswoeth. [s often 
follows verbs introduced by there.] ' Then shrieked the timid and stood 
still the brave.' — Byron. * How unlike marble was that face ! ' — Keats. 
' Say, were you conscious ? ' — G-. ' So was ended the day' ' Six hours a 
day, the young students were employed in this labour.' — Swift. 

* Deep in the shady sadness of a vale. 
Far sunken from the healthy breath of morn, 
Far from the fiery noon and eve's one star — 
Sat grey-haired Saturn, quiet as a stone.' — ^Kbats. 

[This bold inversion of the usual order would hardly be allowed in prose.] 

7. * ' Go ye into all the world.'— ^e^^e. [Old.] * Teach me thy 
statutes.' — Bible. ' My soul, turn from them ; turn we to survey Where 
rougher climes a nobler race display.' — Goldsmith. [The construction 
turn we would in prose be changed to let tis turn.] * But view them closer, 
craft and fraud appear.' — Goldsmith, \yiew them is an imperative form, 
but in force = if you view them.] * Change the order of the words, and 
you spoil the sentence.' — G. ' Then sing, ye birds ! sing, sing a joyous 
song.' — ^WoEDswoETH. [Poetical.] * Mourn, shepherd, near thy old gray 

stone.' — ^WOEDSWOETH. 

* His praise, ye winds ! that from four quarters blow, 
Breathe soft or loud, and wave your tops, ye pines ! * — ^Miltok. 

' . . . . Sing, ye meadow streams, with gladsome voice, 
Ye pine-groves, with your soft and soul-like sounds.' — Coleeidge. 

8. *If ye love them which love you, what reward ha^yeye?' — Bible. 
[In E.II. ye = s, and you = o, or is dependent. In M.E. ye is obsolete in 
prose.] ' I only just ask you to look yonder, and tell me whether you ever 
saw a more disreputable spectacle ? ' — Loed Lttton. ' You are so unlucky 
as not to have the skill even to steal with taste. . . . Oh, but I wouldn't 
have told you, only to divert you.' — Sheeidan. * There you shall sit, and 
I will make you a bouquet of myrtle every day. ... On the left hand you 
will find the door of the parlour, into which I will conduct you. . . . There 
you shall find me ready to conduct you to Olney.' — Cowper. 

9. ' The 's of the possessive case is not a shortened form of the pro- 
noun his.' — G. ' The plural ending es was not borrowed from Old French.* 
' The form worth serves as the present and the future of an old verb.' — G. 
' The aye's and no's were then counted ' [i.e. the members voting respec- 
tively for and against the bill]. ' The suffix er is English ; ion is a Latin 
suffix of many abstract nouns.' * With reference to their common source, 
the indefinite adjective an and the numeral 07ie are alike.' — G. 'For once 
the O's and the Macs were in the right.' — Macal^lat. [I.e. the Irish and 
the Scotch gentlemen whose names have the prefixes and MacJ 



Observations. — 1. A verbal noun in ing, denoting transi- 
tive action, is of course followed bj an object, and tbus a 
pbrase is made, which may be employed either as a subject or 
as an object. But more frequently the phrases thus formed 
are indirectly governed ; in other words, they are made de- 
pendent on prepositions. The strict classification of forms 
given in etymology is not always observed in syntax. Sub- 
jects having the forms of verbal nouns in ing are connective 
in their relations, and here and there are defined by means of 
adverbs. In the first of the excerpts given below, making^ 
preceded by an adjective and by an adverb, is followed by the 
object a will. The pronoun it is sometimes set in apposition 
with a phrase of the kind here described. 

2. The noun-phrase employed as a subject has often the 
infinitive form, of which to write is an example, and where the 
verb is transitive an object follows, as in the phrase to write 
TWtes. It will be noticed, in another place, that a noun-phrase 
may be the complement of the abstract verb. 

3. The initial pronoun it is often set in apposition with a 
subject-phrase, or with several phrases, each having the in- 
finitive form. In another place it will be noticed that it is 
often set in apposition with a subject-clause. 

Examples. — 1. * The not making a will is a culpable omission.'.— Paxey. 

* Committing an error is a mistaking of good and eviV — G-. ' The giving a 
bookseller his price has this advantage.' — Selden. * ' It is yll healing 
of an olde sore^ — Heywood. * The choosing of 'pertinent circumstances is 
the life of a story.' — Sib R. Steele. * His commanding those things to he 
.... importeth the establishment of nature's law.' — Hooker. • Burning 
anything with fire is put for the consuming thereof by war. . . . Elding 
on the clouds [is put] for reigning over much ;people.' — Sir Is. Newton. 

* Laughing to one's self-gvAXQfh. all the rest into jealousy and examination 
of themselves.' — Hobbes. 

2. * To live and not to see is a great misfortune.' — Gr. ' My power is 
to advise, not to compel.' — Johnson. ' To sit on rocks, to muse on flood and 
fell .... This is not solitude.' — Lord Byron. ' Thus to relieve the wretched 
was his pride.' — Goij)Smith. ' To be a fine gentleman is to be a generous 
and a brave man.' — Sir Eichard Steele. ' One of the greatest secrets in 
composition is to Jcnow when to be simple.' — "W. Irving. ' The use of pro- 
nouns is to make speaking and writing more rapid.' — Cobbett. * The only 
consideration is, hm to get at them. . . , How best to honour her, and abate 
the pride of her enemies, must be the subject of your deepest consideration. 
. . . To get to his assistance was impossible.' — Southey. 

3. * i^ is vain for you to rise np early.' — Bible. ' It was in my power 
to have exposed my enemies' — Dryden. * It \s for the guilty to live in 
fear.' — Cobbett. ^It\s a crime to give indiscriminately' — E. A. Abbott. 
*It is hard to personate and act m part long.' — Tillotson. 'Is it for him 
to question the dispensation of the royal favour ? ' — Burke. ' It was an ad- 

282 syntax: examples. 

vantage to him to he furnished with an outline of characters and events. It 
•would be absurd to read the works of such a writer. It is not easy to 
make a simile go on all fours. ^ — Lord Macaulay. 


Observations. — 1. Abstract nonn-clauses, relating to acts 
or facts, are often introduced by that ; sometimes by how, or 
by why. 

2. Concrete noun-clauses, relating to persons, things, 
times, and places, are respectively introduced by who, which, 
what, when, where, and why. Noun-clauses implying doubt 
are often introduced by whether, and serve mostly as objects. 

3. A noun-clause — abstract or concrete — may be set in 
apposition with, the pronoun it. 

Examples. — 1 . * That such a man should have written one of the best books 
in the world is strange enough. . . . Another law of heroic rhyme "was, that 
there should he a pause at the end of every couplet.* — Loed Macaitlay. 
* His hope was that peace might soon be made.* ' By this it appears how 
necessary it is to examine the definitions of former authors' — Hobbes. ' How 
it chanced .... is one of the greatest mysteries of human nature.' — 
Lord Macatjlay. ' How France was saved from this humiliation .... 
■will now be seen.' — Alex. Bain. * The simple question is, whether there 
are not distinct species of oratory.' — Sra. W. Jones. 

2. ' What bodies these ashes made up, were a question above antiqua- 
rianism. . . . What song the sirens sang, or what name Achilles assumed, 
. . . though puzzling questions, are not beyond conjecture.' — Sib T. Browne. 
' Whatsoever happeneth new to a man giveth him matter of hope of knowing 
somewhat that he knew not before.' — Hobbes. * Whatsoever distracts the 
'pleasure lessens it.' — Deyden. 

3. * Hyt semej? a gret wondur, how^ Englysch . . . . ys so dyuers of soun 
in \>is ylond* — John of Trevisa. 'It was found that the style was likely 
to live.' — Milton. ' It happened in the reign of this king, there was a fierce 
battle fought in Flintshire.' — Fuller, [After ' king' the conjunction that 
is omitted.] ' It is thought he perished by poison.' — Alg. Sydney. [Again 
that is omitted.] • It was as often said, " This is that Bucephalus " as 
^^ This is that Alexander."' — Cowley. 'iiJ would seem that he had never 
said but one witty thing in his whole life.' — Is. Disraeli. * It was pro- 
vided also that there should never be a full stop, except at the end of a 
couplet. . . . It \s not in the fine arts alone, that this false correctness is 
prized. . . . It may be doubted, whether there is .... a single remarkable 
passage.' — Lord Macaulay. * It is only higher up that Imagination can 
find rest for the sole of her foot.' — C. Bronte. ' It imports me little what 
ground I tread on.' — Lord Bolingbroke. 

In the above, as in other examples, various uses of it are shown. It may 
refer, backward or forward, to a word, a phrase, or a clause ; or may be 
utterly indefinite, as in the saying, * It was frosty last night.' The fol- 
lowing remark applies to forward references : — ' It serves to mark, in a 
strong manner, the subject, in a mass, of what is about to be affirmed or 
denied.' — Cobbett. In other words, the subject is first pointed at as some- 
thing not clearly seen ; then follows an expression in which the subject is 
made distinct. \_See § 46,] 

attributes: words. 283' 


Attributes are placed in relation with substantive 
words and with phrases, of which the meanings or uses 
require enlargement or definition. The definition sup- 
plied may have reference to quality, quantity, order, iden- 
tity, or possession. In the attributive relation a connexion 
of the attributive with the substantive is not asserted, but 
is indicated or assumed, as in the examples ' a firm will^ 
' a defeated army.' In the predicative relation the attri- 
butive is so placed that its connexion with the substan- 
tive is asserted, as in the examples ' Your will is firm^ 
' The army was defeated,'' Here the attribute is made a 
predicate. In many grammars the verb and the attri- 
bute, taken together, are collectively described as making 
a predicate. 

Observations. — 1. An attribute may consist of any one of 
the following forms : — an ordinary adjective ; a verbal form 
in ing, or ed, or en ; a noun in apposition ; the possessive 
case of a noun or a pronoun ; a phrase ; or a clause. It will 
be noticed that here, as in the sequel, words in syntax are 
always treated with reference to their uses. Accordingly, 
certain attributive uses of words called nouns are noticed in 
this place. 

2. A noun, when placed in apposition with another, may 
serve as an attributive word ; it hel^s to enlarge or to define 
the meaning of a substantive. 

3. The possessive case of a noun is governed by the noun 
following, and serves as an attribute. The possessive in- 
flexion should mostly be employed when the governed noun 
is the name of a person. In some other cases the particle of 
preceding a noun, may be used instead of 's, if no change of 
meaning is made ; but of has versatile uses, and is not always 
a correct substitute. The 's appended to a noun of time 
denotes duration, not possession. 

4. One attribute may belong to several nouns, and several 
attributes may belong to one noun. In its comparative form 
the adjective has mostly reference to two individuals, or to 
two classes ; but the superlative refers to several in one class; 
or in one series. Some forms often called adjectives may 
serve as adverbs, and some words mostly called adverbs serve 
here and there as adjective^ Many adjectives may be defined 


syntax: examples. 

by adverbs ; but the meanings of some attributive words ex- 
clude comparison. 

5. The following vague words, of wbich the greater 
number may serve as pronouns, serve also as adjectives, and 
are often placed before nouns : — 





certain ( = some) 







many a 








the same 

6. Several adjectives have, with respect to gender and 
number in nouns, the restricted uses shown in the examples 

7. The two adjectives an (or a), indefinite, and the, defi- 
nite, are mostly called articles, and have peculiar uses, which 
are shown in the examples. These uses may be partly defined 
and prescribed, but are best learned in the course of reading. 
Indeed, they are commonly well understood in a practical 
way. In form, as in meaning, a,n is cognate with one (1. an) 
and with any (1. aenig). 'Give the boy a shilling' means 
' Give him one shilling.' ' Give him the shilling ' means that 
which he claims, or ought to have, as the case may be. Placed 
before few and little, the indefinite article makes their mean- 
ings more positive. The definite article is a weak substitute 
for that. Where a weakened word like that or those is re- 
quired, write the ; where it would have no force, leave it out, 
if usage permit Names of materials (such as metals), virtues 
and vices, arts, sciences, theories, and studies are placed alone ; 
but a special theory may, by means of the, be set in contrast 
with another. The serves to show that two nouns placed near 
each other are names of two difierent things or persons. 
Again, in a series, items are made distinct by setting the 
before each name ; but there is no rule here save usage. An 
adjective form following the may serve as a noun, concrete or 
abstract. The is set before collective nouns, national names, 
party-names, and names of families and species (here man is 
an exception) ; often before names of rivers, but rarely before 
names of countries. A proper name following the is often 
made common. The correlative phrases ' the more .... the 
less ' are adverbials of proportion, and in each the = by that 
[degree], and represents the pronominal instrumental case pe 
in First English. Lastly, readers will find the inserted in 
many places where its force is hardly perceptible. 

attributes: words. 285 

8. Verbal forms having the endings ing, en, ed, d, or t 
serve as adjectives, and of these forms some are often placed 
before nouns, but others are seldom or never so placed. Here> 
as elsewhere, respect must be paid to usage. The verbal, 
where transitive, governs an object. Adjectives ending in ed 
are not always verbal. [See § 35.] 

9. In certain words, but chiefly in pbrases, the two 
relations attributive and adverbial are closely associated. 
The sign ax may here and there indicate the character of such 
connective words and phrases. 

10. Adjectives are often used as complements with verbs 
of incomplete predication. [See § 46.] 

Examples. — 1. ' Clear daylight suddenly appeared, and brightened all the 
rippling streams in the green valley.' — Gr. * Our old friend the miller -w^s 
there.' * The weeJds holiday -was enjoyed by our boys.' — G-. ' The captain 
was an honourable man.' * He is a man of honour.' * Here lies the deed 
to be signed.' * The workman's task was hard.' [' hard ' = c] 

2. * Peter the Hermit was preaching there.' * Stephen the Martyr waa 
there put to death.' ' Solomon, the son of David, built the temple.' * Croe- 
sus, King of Lydia, was then renowned for his wealth.' 

3. ' The children's toys were bought there.' ' The tyrant's power was 
dreaded.' * The tyrant Henry's power was made absolute.' ' The Nortons 
impounded the Cliffords' stray deer.' [After a plural ending in s the apos- 
trophe meirks the possessive case.] * A month's holiday.' [The possessive 
case here denotes duration.] ' The poet Gray's letters are good specimens 
of fluent prose.' [The inflexion 's is here, as before, added to the latter 
of two nouns set in apposition.] * We have read Gray's poems and Cow- 
pcr's.' [These two inflexions make the two noims distinct from the names 
of two joint authors.] ' We have read Beaumont and Fletcher's plays.' 
[Here the proper nouns are the names of two joint authors.] * At the end 
of this street you will find Smith's smd. Brown's of&ces, opposite each other.' 
[The men are not partners.] ' St. James's Square.' ' Lycurgus' sons.* 
[When the singular ends in es, or is, or us, sounded as a distinct syllable,, 
the apostrophe is often used alone ; but it is better to say ' the sons of 
Lycurgus.'] ' We must respect a British critic's censure.' — Gr. [Here one 
of the two harsher sibilants might be avoided by saying ' the censure of a 
British critic.*] 'He soared on eagles' wings.' [After a plural noun ending 
in 8, the apostrophe alone represents the inflexion.] ' She went to the 
baker's ' [shop]. ' That is a work of Milton's ' [i.e. one of Milton's works]. 
' He was a friend of Ccesar's ' \i.e. one of Caesar's friends. The govern- 
ing noun is often omitted]. ' The Vision of William concerning Tiers the 
Plowman' [This is the correct English title of a well-known book written 
by WnxiAM Langland, who lived in the latter half of the fourteenth cen- 
tury. This title was too long to serve well as the ready name of a book. 
Accordingly it was changed, and the book was called first • The Vision of 
Piers the Plourfnan, 'xthen briefly ' Piers Plowman's Vision.' Consequently, 
Englishmen, as well as Frenchmen, have erroneously described the said 
' Piers ' as a rustic author ' who wrote The Vision.' They might as truly 
say that a wandering author, whose name was ' Pilgrim,' wrote the allegory 

^called the ' Pilgrim's Progress.'] * * John Jackson his book.' [This use of 

286 syntax: examples. 

hi$, instead of 's, is an error, founded, however, on many apparent examples 
easily found in E.II. literature. It was once supposed that the 's in ' the 
king's crown ' was a contraction of his in • the king his crown ; ' but this no- 
tion does not accord with well-known facts in the history of our own language 
— to say nothing of cognate tongues. The inflexion 's is a contraction of 
the inflexion es belonging to the possessive case of the strong declension in 
E.I.] ' Have we not seen, at pleasme's lordly call, The smiling, long-fre- 
quented village fall ? ' — G-oldsmith. [' The possessive inflexion 's should 
especially be used when the governed noun is the name of a person ; ' but 
this rule is not exclusive.] * For thou art Freedom! s now and Fam^s! — 
Haxleck. * One of the best means of securing on^s self from infection.' — 
De Foe. ' His discourse was broken oflf by his mai-Cs telling him that he 
had called a coach.' — ^Addison. ' Eejoicings upon theiVcw Year's Coming of 
Age.' — C. Lamb. ' The Thirty Tears' War.' — G-. ' This world's first creation.' 
— Hooker. ' He had need be afraid of others' memory.' — Bacon. * He will 
sooner be at his journeifs end.' — Locke. ' A nasal solo of at least three 
bars' duration^ — W. Ieving. * The spider's web is cable to man's tie on 
earthly bliss.' — YouNa. • That article appeared in " Chambers's Journal." ' 

* Did you read the review in last week's " Athenaeum " ? ' — G-. * We were 
then shown Edward the Confessor's tomb. ... It was my fortune to 
sit next to a neighbour of Sir Eager' s.' — Addison. 'Napoleon evinced 
the greatest satisfaction at the result of this day's operations.' — Axison. 

* As in Byron's day, there were thousands to whom the world was a blank.' — 
EoGERS. 'In this edition Shakespeare's plays and poems are contained 
in five volumes.' *'The baker and chemist's shops were destroyed' 
\i.e. the baker's shop and the chemist' s^. 'The sage's and the poet's 
theme.' [Correct, if we are here speaking of two men.] * ' St. John's the 
Evangelists Lay.' [John.'] 

4. * ' How much more elder art thou than thy looks ! ' — Shakespeare. 
[Old.] • And yet I show you a more excellent way.' — Bible. [Modern.] 
' In greater or lesser degrees of complexity.' — Bueke. * Along with Shake- 
speare's intense humour, and his equally intense, piercing insight into the 
darkest, deepest depths of human nature, there is still a spirit of universal 
kindness pervading his works.' — Hare. ' A prouder or a more conceited 
writer never lived.' — G-. * * The most straitest sect.' — Bible. [Such double 
comparatives and superlatives as most clennest (cleanest), more unhappyer, 
and most unkindest are often found in O.E., and were not condemned in 
Shakespeare's time. In M.E. these double forms are not allowed.] * The 
loneliest place.' ' The most unmeasured abuse.' * He suffered the extremest 
pain.' — Gr. [In these and many similar instances the error is not formal, 
but logical. There are some adjectives that, with respect to their meanings, 
must exclude comparison. Ex. : — square, extreme, perfect, boundless, abso- 
lute, and infinite. But such words as chief est and perfectest are found in 
good authors.] * He made the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser 
light to rule the night.' — Bible. [The double comparative form lesser is 
established by usage.] ' Of these two pictures the smaller is the better' — Gr. 
[The comparative is correctly used in speaking of two things ; but the super- 
lative is sometimes employed by Goldsmith. The first two of the speeches 
here quoted he ascribes to ' Tony, ' but the third belongs to ' Mrs. Prim- 
rose.'] ' Your own notes are the wildest of the two. . . . We'll see which 
is the strongest, you or I. . . . My eldest can cut paper, and my youngest 
has a very pretty manner.' — Goldsmith. [Here the speaker refers only to 
two.'] * The veriest accident may determine what part shall be preserved.' 

attributes: words. 287 

— LoKD Jeffeet. [The form very often serves as an adjective, but veriest 
is not often seen.] ' The honourahlest part of talk is to give the occasion.' 
— Bacon. ' Hast thou looked on the potter's wheel — one of the venerahlest 
objects ? . . . And fancy the most assiduous potter but without his wheel.' 
— Caelyle. [A strict and modern rule asserts that dissylables must 
generally be compared by means of the adverbs more and most ; but such 
words as pleasanter, pleasantest, handsomest, and solidest are found in good 
writers. In general the stricter rules laid down for the uses of er and est 
are not well obeyed. Of these rules the two following may be noticed : — 
1. The suffixes er and est may be appended to monosyllables, and to dis- 
syllables ending in le or y preceded by a consonant. 2. In words of two 
or more syllables the suffixes er and est should not be appended to any of 
the following endings : — ain, al, ate, ed, ent, id, ing, ful, less, ous, and 
some. This extensive rule is not founded on facts.] * • Of all the other 
qualities of style clearness is the most important J [Omit the word other.'] 
' He is the ablest and 'most conscientious man on that side.' — Gr. * Homer 
was the greater genius ; Virgil the better artist.' — Pope. * * They have read 
the three first books of the Anabasis' [Say, the first three.] 

5. ' All Europe was looking anxiously towards the Low Countries.' — 
Macaulat. * All . the candles were lighted.' — Fielding. ' Four happy 
days bring in another moon.' — Shakespeare. * Now, another person woidd 
be vexed at this.' — Sheridan. ' If any man will sue thee. ... So is 
this great and wide sea, wherein are .... both small and great beasts.' 
— B^le. 'Both minister and magistrate are compelled to choose.' — 
Junius. * A certain man planted a vineyard.' — Bible. * Each lonely scene 
shall thee restore.' — Collins. ' Black rocks .... lift on either hand their 
countless peaks.' — J. Montgomery. ' Have I not cares enow ? ' — ^Bybon. 
[enow is an old form of enough, which, as a noun, may denote either the 
singular or the plural, and serves sometimes as a and sometimes as x. 
The notion that enow should serve as the plural of enough is an error.] 
' Every tree is refreshed by the rain.' [In O.E. every might serve as sv, 
but it serves now as av.] * He passed a, few days in luxurious repose.' — 
Macaulay. [few = few, if any ; a few = some, not many.] * Of making 
many books there is no end.' — Bihle. * Many a flower is born to blush 
unseen.' — Gray. * The many favours you have received should be remem- 
bered.* — Gr. * There are wore things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are 
dreamt of in our philosophy.' — Shakespeare. [7nore is not historically 
the comparative of many, but may have reference either to number or to 
quantity. In etymology more is historically the comparative form of much.] 
* Whence should we have so much bread ? . . . We have taken no bread. . . . 
The barbarous people showed us no little kindness.' — Bible. * Other joys 
are but toys.' — ^Walton. * I see no other way.' [The plural form others - 
sv.] ' Several veSLSons might here be noticed.' — G. 'To every several man.' 
— Shakespeare. [In O.K., as in some legal phrases, several may belong 
to a noun in the singular.] * Sojne people talk as if what debts were not 

' paid were lost ; but it's no such thing. . . . Such men are the men you 
want, if they'll only carry the laws far enough to do some good.' — Mrs. 
KiRKLAND. [In O.E., as in M.E., the uses of some are versatile ; as sv, the 
word may in O.E. refer to one or to several persons, and in M.E. it may 
refer to an indefinite part. As av, the word some may still belong to a 
singular or to a plural noun. In the phrases ' some sixty yards,' ' som£ 
dozen Komans,* etc., the adverbial som£ = about.] * I hate the very sound 

^of them.' — Buekb. * The entertainer provides what fare he pleases.' — 

288 syntax: examples. 

Fielding. * How faintly looks the sun on yonder climates ! ' — Shaftes- 
BUEY. * Near yonder thorn. . . . Near yonder copse.' — Goldsmith. [In 
M.E. yonder, as av, belongs mostly to poetry; but its use is common enough 
in O.E.] 

6. ' All men will speak good of themselves.^ — Gr. • You have enough 
care.' * You have had cares enough' — Gr. ' This kind of treatment will 
not please him.' — Gr. ' For those people we have no respect.' — G. * These 
two princes were seated on either side of the throne.' \each'i historically 
either is not incorrect.] 'Each man shall receive one sovereign.' * ' Every 
man must maintain their own rights.' [Say, his?^ 'For all our pains we 
had 7«o thanks.' ' There is wo music in that noise.' *It is indeed "such 
writing as was never read.'" — Pope. ^ Such people should have their 
reward.' [The following vague adjectives belong to nouns in the sin- 
gular : — each, every, either, many a, much, neither ; the following to nouns 
in the plural '.—few, many, several ( = the obsolete word divers) ; the fol- 
lowing belong either to nouns singular or to nouns plural : — all, any, 
enough ( = the old form enow), no ( = 7iot any), some, such. Where a noun 
is in the singular, and is followed by as, introducing a clause of com- 
parison, a often comes between such and the noun. 'For such a man 
as you describe.'] * ' Incline thine ear. . . . Forget also thine own people. 
. . . He shall be like a tree that bringeth forth his fruit in his season. '^ 
— Bible. * ' The water y-ran [ = ran] in his streames.' — Lydgate. [Old ; 
the neuter possessive its is a modern form. In O.E., and in poetry, mine 
and thine often come before vowels. It is understood that adjectives 
having pronominal forms show, as far as their inflexions allow, the 
gender and the number of the nouns to which they respectively belong.] 
* * All the virtues of mmikind are to be counted on a few fingers, but his 
follies are innumerable.' — Swift, [their.'] * * Both minister and magistrate 
are compelled to choose between his duty and his reputation.' — ^JtrNiTTs. 
[In both places omit his.] * * She fell a-laughing like one out of their 
right mind.' — Maeia Edgewoeth. [Instead of their read one's.] * ' Every- 
body should respect their neighbour's rights.' — G. [his.] ' This twenty 
years have I been with thee.' — Bible. [Old, and cognate with many good 
examples. The number of years is collectively taken.] 

7. ' They're both of a [ = one] size.' — Goldsmith. ' These are cheap 
at a shilling a hundred' [i.e. at one shilling for one hundred]. 'A poet- 
aster may dream that he is a Milton.' — G. [A proper noun following an 
or a is treated as a common noun.] ' Burleigh had a cool temper, a sound 
judgment, and a constant eye to the main chance.' — Loed Macatjlay. 
*No figures will render a cold ovan empty composition interesting,' — Blaie. 
' There is little to be said in his favour.' * Still there is a little to be said 
in his ■^vour.' — G. ' Show me the misprint you find in the solution of that 
equation.' — G. ' Astronomy is a science.' ' Milton did not accept the modern 
theory of astronomy.' 'Silver is lighter than gold.' 'Truth will prevail.' 'Tell 
me the truth.' — G. * ' We saw the old and new bridge.' [the old and the 
new.] * ' The Indians came out from the north and south side.' [the north 
side and the south.] 'He wrote to the secretary and to the librarian.' 
[Right, if he wrote to two persons.] ' The grass wants rain, but the wheat 
look.** well.' — G. 'In this stream we have the perch, the roach, the chub, 
the dace, and their common enemy the pike.' — G. ' Here we may chase 
roach or dace, perch or pike, bleak or gudgeon.' — Iz. Walton. 

*. . . . Silent, bare. 
Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie 
Open unto the fields, and to the sky.' — Wobdswoeth. 

attributes: words. 289 

* The figure, placed in statue-like repose, has great dignity, but the 
face is full of kindness. The hair, the diadem, the simple drapery ; all 
harmonize with the expression of that face — so gentle, yet so majestic- — Gr. 
[The writer names the traits of a certain picture.] ' The crafty and the 
easy, the wise and the foolish, the rich and the poor, shall all appear.' — Jeb. 
Taylor. ' T^ Kak6v = beauty ; or, more strictly, the beautiful.^ — Gr. ' The 
multitude.' 'The congregation.' 'The Danes.' 'The Whigs and the 
Tories.' ' The Nortons did not live on good terms with the CliiFords.' — Gr. 
' The polar bear belongs to the frigid zone.' * Man has the gift of speech.' 
' The Thames.' ' France.' ' Tirol belongs to Austria.' ' Where are the 
Keplers and the Newtons of your time ? ' — G. ' The more you learn, the less 
you will think of your learning.' — Gr. [Here the form the is historically 
pronominal, and the forms more and less are adjectives ; but the uses of 
the more and the less are adverbial ; they relate to the verbs learn and think^ 
and serve as connectives denoting proportionate ratios of increase and de- 
crease. The example (belonging strictly to § 47) is placed here, because it 
shows clearly the diflference of etymology and syntax. The former treats 
mostly oi forms ; the latter of relations or uses.'] 

8. * ' Ich y-leue [I believe] .... ine lyf eurelest-iwc?e [in the life ever- 
last-i72^].' — Dan Michel, 1340. [In the old Kentish sermon here quoted, 
many of the nouns end in Inge, while nearly all the words ending in inde 
serve either as adjectives or as complements. In two places inde = the 
suffix able ; but its general force = that of the later suffix ing.] ' Thei 
drynken gode beverage and swete and noryssh-yw^e.' — Sie John Mande- 
viixE. ' Anone lykinge wynd vulde J>e seyles [Anon a favouring wind 
filled the sails].' — John of Tkevisa. ' A worthy weed [coat] well closing 
[i.e. fitting well]. . . . Busyness, that cunning creature.' — Gtavin Douglas. 
' And stars declining counsel us to rest.' — Earl of Surrey. 

* The wrathful Winter, 'preaching on apace. 
With blustering blasts had all y-bar'd the treen [trees].' — Sackville. 

' Raging waves foaming .... wandering stars.' — Bible. ' Instead of 
the rolling tide .... I saw nothing but the long, hollow valley of Bagdat, 
with oxen, sheep, and camels graziny upon the sides of it.' — Addison. 
' The ships .... were required for more pressing services. . . . More 
gratifying testimonials of public admiration awaited Nelson wherever he 
went. ... A soldier-like and becoming answer was returned. . . . Amid 
heart-breaking griefs she found consolation.' — Southey. ' William war- 
nede hym of couenant y-brokc [broken].'— John of Tretisa. ' They have 
made them [i.e. for themselves] a molten calf. . . . Thou shalt not make 
unto thee [i.e. for thyself] any graven image. . . . They .... stagger 
like a drunken man. . . . Some [escaped] on broken pieces of the ship.' — 
Bihle. ' He sung Darius .... fallen from his high estate.' — Dryden. ' The 
swollen river. . . . K forgotten story. ... A tale forgotten long ago. . . . 
A. forlorn hope. . . . The cloven foot. . . . A frozen lake. . . . These welU 
bound volumes.' — G. ' Ich y-zej [1 saw] )>e holy martires [martyrs] mid 
blisse and worJ>ssipe y-corouned [crowned].' — Dan Michel. ' He fond the 
heremyte ded.' — Sir John Mandevillb. ' Praise him with stringed in- 
struments and organs. ... Ye are like unto whited sepulchres.' — Bible. 
'A gentle knight y-clad in mightie armes. . . . First lusty Spring all dight 
[arrayed] in leaves of flowers.' — Spenser. ' Your long-expected letter is 
come at last. . . . The parcel brought y^terday is welcome. . . . The ball so 
wen hit and so well caught was bowleoby a left-handed man.' — G. [Here 


290 syntax: examples. 

hit and caught are examples of forms that do not often precede their nouns.] 
* It is a stiff-necked people.' — Bible. ' They are good men, much hearted 
like an hen.' — Skelton. ' He is a lion-hearted man.' — G-. ' A double- 
minded man is unstable in all his ways.' — Bible. [These compound adjec- 
tives do not indicate that the verbs 'hand,' 'neck,' 'heart,' and 'mind' 
have any existence. There are, indeed, such verbs as * hand ' and ' mind,' 
but in meaning they are not connected with ' left-handed ' and ' high- 
minded.' See § 35.] 

9. * Here, by the bonds of nature feebly held, 

Minds combat minds, repelling and repelled.^ — Goldsmith. 

[Here the relations of the words in Italic are twofold. They define the 
subject, while they indicate a reason for the assertion. These two relations 
are often noticeable when certain phrases serve instead of single words ; 
but in many instances the adverbial relation is the more prominent.] 

10. 'He was cautious; indeed, he was afraid of us.' — Gr. [cautioiis =» 
c ; afraid = c. See § 46.] 


Ohservations. — 1. Attributive-Phrases liave forms called 
severally verbal and prepositional ; but these forms do not 
indicate tbeir nses or relations. Some phrases called ' prepo- 
sitional/ as to their initial forms, serve as attributes ; others, 
far more numerous, serve as adverbials. [^See §§7, 43.] 

2. Objects follow verbal adjectives ending in ing, when 
these denote transitive action. It should be remembered that 
the essence of the verb itself is the power of telling or assert- 
ing. Both verbal nouns and verbal adjectives can govern 
directly. Of these verbal forms some are so far vague in their 
meanings that they must be followed not only by objects, but 
also by complements, or such adverbial expressions as can- 
not be well omitted. The following sentence affords an ex- 
ample : — ' We are lost in wonder at the idea of forming a vast 
mountain [at EUora] into almost eternal mansions.^ Here the 
object, if left without the complement, would suggest a false 

3. Attributive-Phrases mostly relate to substantive words 
immediately preceding, while Adverbial- Phrases are more 
moveable. Care is required here and there in rightly placing 
an Attributive-Phrase. 

4. There are certain phrases in which the two relations, 
the attributive and the adverbial, are more or less closely con- 
nected. The phrase defines the subject, with respect to cir- 
cumstances, and at the same time indicates a reason for the act 
denoted by the verb. In the examples following, connective 
phrases are distinguished by means of the sign ax. 

5. A simple sentence may contain several phrases, and 


an attributive may often be well followed by an appended 
adverbial. Thus one phrase may be so linked to a word in 
another, as to be removed in a second degree from a word in 
the chief sentence. Again, there may be a third, and even a 
fourth, remove. But the employment of several remote phrases 
in one simple sentence is not recommended. 

Examples. — 1. ' I have nothing to say to it.' — Locke. ' A sight to dream 
of, not to tell.' — Coleridge. ' Here lies the deed to be signed.' ' This is 
the road to York.' ' That is the way to win the game.' — G. ' There is also 
room reserved for the loftiness or gravity of general history.' — Deydbn. 

* And, towering o'er these beauteous woods, 
Gigantic rocks were ever dimly seen.' — Pbof. Wilson. 

•In literature we judge from a taste never formed.' — Lobd Lttton. 
' Moors, dark with heath, shut in little valleys.' — C. Beonte. * He resumed 
most of the heads of the sermon.' — G. Burnet. [In many places of, soon 
following of, has an awkward effect.] ' There has been an attempt to re- 
construct society on a basis of material motives and calculations' — Lord 
Beaconsfield. ' "We then went through miles of ruined tombs' — Dickens. 

2. ' And he seith to the man hauyinge a drye honde [hand], " Ryse 
in-to the mydil." ' — Wycliffe. ' He hears the bell perpetually telling the 
sad stories [ap of the first degree] of death [ap of the second degree].' — 
Jer. Taylor. ' The admiral .... sent him a note advising him to be 
guided.' — Sotjthey. ' Fear to do base, unworthy things is valour,' — Ben 
JoNSON. * You may behold a Scipio and a Ltelius gathering cockle-shells 
on the shore.' — Dryden. 'The means of effecting every improvement .... 
may be found within the constitution itself.' — Lord Macaulay. ' Strength 
of will is the quality most needing cidtivation.' — G. H. Lewes. ' Caesar 
then wrote three words, containing three sentences. . . . There are several 
ways of telling that story' — G. 

3. ' Several generations have now passed away since any wise and 
patriotic Englishman has meditated resistance to the established govern- 
ment.' — Lord Macaulay. * ' His broad, round face [the tiger's], when 
turned towards us, striped with white, made the stoutest tremble.' — Basil 
Hall. [Put striped with white, next face, to which the phrase belongs.] 
* * Some great improvements have been lately made in books for children. 
Every Christmas brings us a store of well-illustrated books for the amuse- 
ment of children sent forth from Paternoster Row.' [The iphTS,se sent forth, 
etc., should of course follow books.] 

4. ' A grete multitude, heerynge the thingis [ax] that he dide, camen to 
hym.' — Wycliffe. ' Learning is like a river, whose head, being far in 
the land [ax], is, at first rising, little and easily viewed.' — Feltham. ' Sir 
Roger, being a good churchman [ax], has beautified the inside of his 
church.' — Aj)dison. ' This artifice succeeded against tht^se inexperienced 
troops, who, heated by action [ax] and sanguine in their hopes [ax], precipi- 
tately followed the Normans.' — Hume, 

' And the weak soul, within itself unblest [ax], 
Leans for all pleasure on another's breast.' — Goldsmith. 

'His horse, urged for many miles to its utmost speed [ax], appeared to 
rg^l from fatigue.' — Sir W. Scott. 'The Englit^hman, «^ra/wiw^ /or ever 
to hold his loved India [ax], will plant a firm foot on the bankjs of the 

u 2 

292 syntax: examples. 

Nile.' — KiNGLAKE. ' The labourer, having done a fair day's work [ax], 
went home.' [There are phrases, apparently connective, that are simply or 
mainly adverbial. The following are examples.] ' God grant that, having 
a competency [xp], we may be content.' — Iz. Walton. 

* They please, are pleased ; they give to get esteem, 
Till, seeming blest [xp], they grow to what they seem.' — Goldsmith. 

' The herald then, seeing each champion in his place [xp], uplifted his 
voice.' — Sir W. Scott. [The phrase relates to the verb. Generally 
speaking, a denotes a permanent relation, and x one that is occasional or 
transitory ; but the clearest mark of the adverbial is this : it relates mostly 
to action, transition, and passion.] 

5. ' Cyrus drove back the soldiers stationed [a to soldiers'] before the 
king [xp to stationed, and subordinate in the second degree].' ' Decius, 
tired [a] of writing books [xp to tired ; sub., 2nd degree], adapted [a to 
books ; 3rd degree] to the learned only [xp to adapted ; sub,, 4th degree], 
chose a popular question.' — Morell. [In the following examples, attri- 
butes, taken together with their appended adverbials, are set in Italic, 
and degrees of subordination are denoted by means of figures.] 'Now 
came forth Walton's disciple, ready [a] to put into exercise [2] the skill 
accruing from habits [3] of perseverance [4].' ' This enterprise was well 
adapted [c] to bring into vigorous exercise [2] habits of endurance and per- 
severance [3], acquired in the course [4] of long and wearisome journeys [5] 
through many lonely regions [6].' It is of course understood that this sen- 
tence is not selected as a model to be imitated. On the contrary, it is 
intended to show that a simple sentence may be made cumbrous by string- 
ing together too many phrases. Attributive-phrases, thus extensively 
employed, are especially objectionable. It will be shown, in another place, 
that adverbials may be more freely employed.] 


Observations. — 1. Attributive-Clauses are expanded ad- 
jectives. Their connective forms are relative pronouns and 
adverbs. In places where, if inserted, they would be governed 
forms, having definite and restrictive uses, relative pronouns 
are often omitted, especially in conversation. More strictly 
described, clauses serving generally as adjectives have two 
uses — one definitive, the other simply connective. In old litera- 
ture, these two uses are to a great extent represented by the 
two forms that Sbud which', but since the seventeenth century 
the distinction has been more or less neglected, though it is 
not forgotten. When strictly employed, that should restrict 
or define the meaning of the antecedent ; which (or who) 
should introduce a new assertion made respecting the ante- 

2. That, originally demonstrative, and identical vrith the, 
is weakened in force when used as a relative pronoun, but has 
not lost its first characteristic — pointing out. It is our oldest 

attributes: clauses. 293 

relative pronoun. In First English se (declined) and j^e (not 
declined) were both demonstrative forms, but they served also 
as definitive relatives. [See § 9.] In the twelfth and thirteenth 
centuries that was employed as a substitute for j)e, and fol- 
lowed antecedents of all genders and of both numbers. The 
definitive use of that was generally established in the four- 
teenth century. In Chaucer that . . . . he = who, that .... 
his = whose, and that .... him — whom. In the fifteenth 
century Bishop Fisher's sermons show clear examples of that 
definitive, contrasted with which connective. Their uses were 
partly confused in the sixteenth century; but that definitive was 
often and clearly employed in verse by Spenser, Daniel, Dray- 
ton, and Shakespeare, and in prose by Bacon. In the seven- 
teenth century the restricting relative that is often employed by 
Milton, as in the * Morning Prayer ' Q Paradise Lost,' book v.) 
The sequences which and who, following respectively that, 
him, they, and those, are used by Barrow, as by other good 
authors of his time, and they mostly avoid the collision that 
that, afterwards denounced by Addison. In the ' Sermon on 
the Mount ' (Matth. v.-vii.) that definitive is found in about 
fifteen places, but in five places which is equally definitive. 
HoBBES often uses that with a restrictive force. In the earlier 
part of the eighteenth century Addison, often using well a 
definitive that, avoided such close repetitions of the word as were 
too freely employed. That mostly follows the words all, any, 
everything, none, nothing, the first, the last, and the sa,me ; also 
nouns defined by superlative adjectives, and superlatives em- 
ployed as substantives. That, made use of as equivalent to 
what, and this latter word, used as equivalent to a definitive 
that, are both obsolete. 

3. Which and who are in many places merely connective, 
and serve to introduce additional assertions relating to ante- 
cedents already defined. But in modern literature these vague 
connectives are often employed to introduce clauses where the 
writer's intended meaning is definitive. The old form the which 
is often definitive, but which serves cotemporaneously as a sub- 
stitute in Shakespeare and in later writers. In the seven- 
teenth century which definitive often follows they and that. 
Addison writes which after the, this, and those, where the use 
is definitive. In the nineteenth century which and who are 
very freely employed, often rightly by a sheer accident, but 
often falsely, instead of that. The frequent result is that the 
intended uses of clauses are left vague, and their meanings 
are indicated by the lame aid^of punctuation. That^ more 

294 syntax: examples. 

closely connective than which, takes no comma before it, but 
which, introdncing a clause that might be omitted, is often 
preceded by a comma. Two grammarians — Bain and Abbott 
— have especially treated of the distinct uses here noticed. 

4. (a) Where, without loss of force, and it, or and he, might 
serve as a substitute for a connective pronoun, that is not re- 
quired. (&) Where the antecedent is already well defined, that 
is not required, (c) Where which or tvho might leave the 
meaning doubtful, or would be weak and wanting due em- 
phasis, write that. 

5. The Attributive- Clause is an expanded adjective. 
Simple adjectives precede their nouns, but expanded adjec- 
tives follow. In other words, the clause should relate to the 
tvord immediately or nearly preceding the connective. The 
relations of such words as that, which, who, where, and when 
are shown by their places. Apart from its position, who might 
relate to any person, or to any persons, and that might relate 
to any noun, without regard to distinctions of gender and 
number. Accordingly, where clauses serving as adjectives 
are wrongly placed, their meanings may indeed be guessed, 
but false and sometimes ludicrous meanings may for a moment 
be suggested. Our laws of usage afibrd us a considerable 
extent of freedom in placing adverbials having the expanded 
forms of phrases and clauses. It is not understood that the 
adverbial must always or chiefly relate to the nearest pre- 
ceding word. But our rules for placing Attributive- Clauses 
are comparatively strict. It cannot be said, however, that 
the connective ivhich always follows immediately the word 
to which the clause relates. This is indeed the rule, but 
some clear exceptions are found in the writings of good 
authors, among whom Addison may be specially named. 

Examples. — 1. 'The d\f^cvi\.t\es with which he was surrounded seemed 
to call forth new talents.' [ac inserted between s and v in p.] ' As the 
barren country through ichich they passed afforded hardly any provisions, 
they -were reduced to feed on berries.' — Eobertsokt. [ac inserted between 
s and V in xc] ' My soul is still a stranger in the land wherein I dwell.' 
[The connective is an adverb.] ' Know you the land where citron-trees 
are blooming?' [The connective is an adverb.] *A man that seeketh pre- 
cise truth had need to remember what every name [thaf] he useth stands 
for.' — HoBBES. [The writer omits that where it would be the object.] 
■'He shows well, and says well, and himself is the worst thing [that] he 
hath.' — Bp. Hall. [As before, the writer omits that.^ 

' That independence a Britons prize too high 
Keeps man from man, and breaks the social tie.' — GtOLDSMITH. 

[Here which is understood as preceding • Britons.'] * Ye winds .... 

attributes: clauses. 295 

convey some report of a land [thaf] I must visit no more.' — Cowpbr. 
'We can estimate the rank [that] they should severally hold,' — Lobd Lytton. 
2. ' Feeder ure \>vi ];>e eart on heofonum. . . . pin feeder J>e ges^h'5 
[sees] on diglum [in secret] hyt agylt [will repay it] i>e.'— Bible. ' Hd, 
ne eart J)^ se men >e on minre scole w^re afed ? ' [' What ! art thou 
not the man that wast nurtured in my school ? '] 'On anre dune J>e is 
gehaten Synay.' — ^lfbic. ' Uppon ane dune >at is J>e mont of Synai.' — 
Old English Homilies, 'pe isetnesses [ordinances] )jet beon makede.' 
[1258.] 'Heiemen [high men] of >is lond, >at of hor [their] blod come, 
holde]> alle ]>ulke [that same] speche >at hii [they] of hom [from them, 
i.e. the Normans] nome [took].' — Eobebt of Glottcester. 'Vaderoure, 
)>et art ine heuenes.' — Dan Michel. ' Machomete loved well a gode here- 
myte, that duelled in the desertes.' — Sir John Mandevillb. ' Symont 
suede [followed] hym, and thei that weren with hym.' — Wycliffe. ' par 
ys also a pond \>at turnej> tre [wood] in-toyre [iron].' — John of Trbvisa. 
' Pacienee, that is another remedie agains ire, is a vertu that . ... is not 
wroth for noon harm that is doon to him.' — The Persones Tale. ' It is 
cowardise that kepith the Frenchmen from rysing.' — Sir John Fortescue. 
* The fortune that prevails must be the right.' — Daniel. 

' The storms of sad confusion that may grow 
Up in the present, for the coming times. 
Appal not him that hath no side at all 
But for himself. . . .' — Daniel. 

' The Dryads that were wont about thy lawns to rove .... 
They, with the oaks that lived, now with the oaks are dead.' — 


' I could, in this town, buy the best pig or goose that I could lay my hand 
on for fourpence.' [1581.] 

' You know that you are Brutus that speak this.' 
' I that denied thee gold will give my hearL' 
' The quality of mercy is not strained — 

It blesseth him that gives, and him that takes.' 
* You take my house, when you do take the prop 

2%a^ doth sustain my house. . . .' — Shakespeare. 

' He that questioneth much shall learn much. . . . There be some 
that think their wits have been asleep, except they dart out somewhat that 
is piquant.' — Lord Bacon. * He shall be like a tree .... that bringeth 
forth his fruit in his season. . . . Who shall dwell in thy holy hill ? He 
that walketh uprightly. . . . Broad is the way that leadeth to destruction. 
... On the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. [ That as a 
relative does not admit of a preposition before it.] .... Which, now, of these 
three .... was neighbour unto him that fell among the thieves ? ' — Bible. 
' There is a passion that hath no name ; but the sign of it is that distortion 
of the countenance which we call laughter, which is always joy.' — Hobbes. 
' You shall hardly meet with a man that complains not of some want. 
... I have heard of a man that was angry with himself because he was 
no taller. ... He that loses his conscience has nothing left that is worth 
keeping.' — Iz. Walton. 

' Leaving the old, both worlds at once they view 
That stand upon the threshold of the new.' — Waller. 

' Herostratus lives, that burned fhe Temple of Diana ; he is almost lost 

296 syntax: examples. 

that built it.' — Sir T. Browke. ' All those hundreds of millions that were 
slain in all the Koman wars shall appear.' — Jer. Taylor. ' This innocent 
deceiver of the world (as Horace calls him) I take to have been more 
happy in his part than the greatest actors that fill the stage with show and 
noise ; nay, even than Augustus himself, who asked, with his last breath, 
whether he had not played his farce very well.' — Cowley. ' He is the last 
man that finds himself to be found out.' — Tillotson. ' All that is to be 
found in books is not built upon true foundations.' — Locke. 'He that 
is comely when old and decrepit, surely was very beautiful when he was 
young.' — South. ' He had a copy brought him of everything that passed 
in his council.' — Bp. Burnet. * The valley that thou seest is the vale of 
misery. . . . "What thou seest is that portion of eternity which is called 
Time. . . . Does life appear miserable, that gives thee opportunities of 
earning such a reward? Is death to be feared, that will convey thee 
to so happy an existence ? ' — Addison. * That that that gentleman has 
advanced is not that that he should have proved.' — Spectator, 80. [In- 
tentionally made ludicrous.] 

'How small, of all that human hearts endure 
That part which laws of kings can cause or cure ! ' — Johnson. 
* Bright-eyed Fancy, hovering o'er. 
Scatters from her pictured urn 
Thoughts that breathe and words that burn. — Gray. 

' Such already was the g^oryof the British navy, that it scarcely seemed 
to receive any addition from the most signal victory that was ever achieved 
upon the seas.' — Southey. ' The great charm of English scenery is the 
moral feeling that seems to pervade it.' — W. Irving. * The knowledge 
that will hold good in working — cleave thou to that.' — Carlyle. ' It was 
not reason that besieged Troy ; it was not reason that sent forth the Saracen 
to conquer the world ; that inspired the Crusades ; that instituted the monastic 
orders ; it was not reason that produced the Jesuits ; above all, it was not 
reason that created the French Eevolution.' — Lord Beaconsfield. ' He is 
one of the best and wisest men that have ever lived.' — Bain. ' There are 
a good many Eadical members in the House who cannot forgive the Prime 
Minister for being a Christian.' ' Twenty years hence, who is to say 
whether the meaning is " and they, i.e. all the Eadical members in the 
House," or " there are a good many Eadical members of the House that 
cannot," etc' — E. A. Abbott. ' There is not an ox, or a cow, or a swine 
.... that is not set down in the writ \i.e. 'Domesday'].' — Freeman. 

3. * After-ward speke we of scornyng, whiche is a wikked thing. . . . 
I will speke of covey tise, of whiche synne saith seint Poule,' etc. — The 
Persones Tale. ' The assent of them who are to be governed seemeth neces- 
sary.' — Hooker. ' The mountains which divide Thessaly from Greece.' — 
Sir "W". Ealeigh. ' As for jest, there be certain things which ought to be 
privileged ft-om it.' — Lord Bacon. 

' The intent and purpose of the law 

Hath full relation to the penalty 

Which here appeareth due upon the bond.' — Shakespeaee. 
' If it be proved against an alien, 

That by direct or indirect attempts 

He seek the life of any citizen, 

The party 'gainst the vjhich he doth contrive 

Shall seize one half his goods.' — Shakespeare. 

attributes: clauses. 297 

* Narrow is the way which leadeth unto life.' — Bible. ' The Egyptian 
mummies, which Cambyses or time hath spared, avarice now consumeth.' — 
SiE T. Browne. * They were forced to let the flames burn on, which 
[= a7id this] thej did for near two- miles in length.' — ^Evrlyn. 'What 
can be more just, pleasant, or beneficial to us than are those duties of piety 
which religion enjoins?' — Bareow. ' I observed some w^ ran to and fro 
upon the bridge. . . . He then resumed his discourse, telling me that the 
widow Truby .... distributed hdr medicine gratis among all sorts of 
people ; to which [ = and to this] the knight added,' etc. — Addison. ' " I 
have gotten four shillings," said he, "which [= and this] is a great sum." ' 
— De Fob. ' Jones answered, " That is the ghost." To which [ = And 
to this] Partridge replied,' etc. — Fielding. ' The road which led to honour 
was open to your view.' — Junius. ' The client resembles that emperor who 
is said to have been suffocated with the bed-clothes, which were only de- 
signed to keep him warm.' — Goldsmith. * There are ties which, though 
light as air, are as strong as links of iron.' — Burke. * Is not this the very 
nonsense which is talked/ etc. — Sydney Smith. ' The advice and medicine 
which the poorest labourer can now obtain is far superior to what Henry 
VIII. could have commanded.' — Lord Macaulay. 'The same poet who 
conceived the character of Achilles has also drawn that of Hector.' — T. 
Arnold. * ' Who steals my purse steals trash.' — Shakespeare. [Here 
Who = He who.] ' Coveitise is for to coveyte sucke thinges as thou hast not.' 
— The Persones Tale. [In many places sicch . . . . as = that or those .... 
which.] ' Such reading as was never read.' — Pope. 

• There's not a flower 
But shows some touch, in freckle, streak, or stain, 
Of his imrivalled pencil.' — Cowper. 

[Here but = that .... not.] * * A vagrant is a man what wanders 
about.' [?Aaif.] * ' He prays you will forget the error, and which was not 
wilful.' [Omit and.] ' He thanked the friend who gave the aid which was 
so welcome at that time.' [Omit which was. Close repetitions of relatives 
should be avoided.] 

4. {a) ' Here comes a native, who [ = and he] may be able to tell us 
the name of this river.' — Gr. {a) ' These words were received with a shout 
of joy, which was heard in the street below.' — Lord Macaulay. (b) ' If 
ye, then, be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought 
for the rest ? ' — Bible, (b) ' The best kind of glory is that which is re- 
flected from honesty.' — Cowley, (b) 'Those great councils which had 
once curbed the regal power had sunk into oblivion.' — Lord Macaulay. 
(c) ' I am a practical man, and disbelieve in everything that is not prac- 
tical.' — E. A. Abbott, (c) 'Mr. Tegg heard Alderman Cadell give the 
then famous toast, " The Booksellers' four B's — Burns, Blair, Buchan, and 
Blackstone," which indicated the books that were sold in the greatest 
numbers.' — Athenceum. (c) ' It seems strange there should be so few who 
have really made themselves acquainted with the origin, the history, and 
the gradual development into its present form of that mother tongue which 
is already spoken over half the world, and which embodies many of the 
noblest thoughts that have ever issued from the brain of man. ... It is the 
plain Saxon phrase that, whether in speech or in writing, goes straightest 
and strongest to men's heads and hearts.' — Lord Derby. 

6. ' There is a passion that hath no name ; but the sign of it is that 
Mstortion of the countenance which y^ call laughter.' — Hobbes. * ' There 

298 syntax: examples. 

wanted not some who believed him to be prond and imperious, from which 
no mortal man was ever more free.' — Clarendon. [As a pronoun, which 
should relate to 'pride; not to proud. The writer knew nothing at all 
about pronouns, and the consequence was, he was most unhappily fond of 
them.] ' What thou seest is that portion of eternity which is called time. 
. . . There was no passage except through the gates of death, that I saw 
opening every moment. . . . There were indeed some persoms (but their 
number was very small) that continued a kind of hobbling march. . . . 
He was conducted to that figure which represents that martyr to good 
housewifery who died by the prick of a needle.' — Addison. * ' He had been 
eight years [engaged] upon a project for extracting sunbeams out of cucum- 
bers which were to be put into phials hermetically sealed, and let out to 
warm the air in raw, inclement summers.' — Swift. [The ' cucumbers ' 
were not ' to be put into phials.'] * ' Some men are too ignorant to be 
humble, without which there can be no docility, no progress.' — Berkeley. 
[As a pronoun, which should relate to humility, not to humhle.l ' All this 
upper story has for many years had no other inhabitants than certain rats 
whose very age renders them worthy of this venerable mansion. ... It 
is furnished with historical tapestry whose marginal fringes do confess the 
moisture of the air.' — Pope. [In E.I. hwa is interrogative and relates to 
persons, while hwaet relates to things ; but the genitive case is liwsBS, 
relating to both persons and things. The modern form whose represents 
hwses, and belongs historically as much to the neuter as to the masculine. 
There is no ground for the notion, that whose must always relate to per- 
sonal names. Our modern substitutes for whose are often awkward and 
are quite useless.] *' Homer is remarkably precise, which renders him 
lively and agreeable.' — Blair. [Again which relates to no substantive 
word.] * ' There appears an assumption of superiority in the biographer 
over the subjects of his labours, which diminishes the idea of their talents.' 
— RoscoE, [Here which relates to a remote noun. Four phrases come in 
between the antecedent and the relative.] * ' Several of the Gardes were 
stationed at the windows of the houses who kept up a heavy fire.' — Sir A. 
Alison. ['At the windows,' ez'c., were stationed 'several of the Gardes^ 
who, etc.] * ' What is to be thought of the poor shepherd-girl from the 
hills and forests of Lorraine that .... rose suddenly out of the quiet .... 
rooted in deep pastoral solitudes ? ' — De Quincet. * ' It is this all-per- 
vading preserice of light, and this suffusion of rich colour, through the 
deepest shadows, which make the very life and soul of Venice.' — Mrs. • 
Jameson. [As far as possible, the relation of which should be made ob- 
vious. Instances of extreme carelessness are numerous. In selecting a few 
specimens, it would be useless td append exact references to errors or defects 
that may be found almost everywhere.] * ' My son, they tell me, spends 
too much time in playing the flute, which I am sorry to hear.' [Here which 
intentionally = and that report?^ * ' Henry has, at last, devoted his atten- 
tion to the study of common law which affords me such great satisfaction.' 
[Here which intentionally relates to the fact stated in the sentence pre- 
ceding.] * ' He read slowly and in a monotone that long chapter which 
made us all so sleepy.' [Again which seems intended to relate to the 
whole sentence.] *'I bought a Swiss atlas at that shop which is full 
of misplaced names of mountains.' [Here at that shop might conveniently 
follow bought, or might with emphasis begin the sentence.] * ' This Latin 
period is compound, and is complex in each of its two main divisions, 
which requires considerable care in making an English translation.' [A 
full stop should follow divisions. The next sentence may begin with 

TERES. 299 

words like these: — 'It will therefore require,' etc.] *'When a sailing 
vessel is leaving our horizon, the last part seen by a distant observer is the 
top-gallant that shows us the earth is round.' [The sequence exemplified 
here is especially out of place in the treatment of a scientific topic. Facts 
should first of all be distinctly stated and set apart from all inferences. A 
full stop should follow top-gallant. The next sentence should be some- 
thing like the following : — ' This is one of several observations made use of 
to show that the earth is a spheroid.' 

46. VERBS. 

Observations. — 1. Whatever its form may be, the verb — 
sometimes called ' the finite ' or ' limited ' verb — is a word 
that, considered as regards its force, unites two elements — 
one attributive, the other connective — so that the whole word 
called ' the limited verb ' connects something with, or tells 
something of, the subject. The verb that ascribes to a subject 
nothing more than being or existence is called abstract ; the 
verb that ascribes to a subject any distinct state of being, or 
any distinct act or quality, is called concrete. There are, of 
course, several shades or gradations in the line thus drawn 
between two classes of verbs. Strictly speaking, there is 
only one verb. In language, as in nature — 

' The One remains ; the many change and pass.' 

The general idea of that which was, and is, and is to come, 
does not belong to any particular theory called ' philosophy,' 
but is expressed or understood inevitably, in all tongues, and 
whenever any sentence connects an attribute with the general 
assertion of existence. There is only one abstract or general 
verb — to be. Of this one verb all the concrete or predicative 
verbs are, in fact, so many variations, made by connecting 
various attributive elements with the abstract or general verb, 
either indicated by an inflexion, or understood as everywhere 
present when we assert anything. Thus all concrete verbs 
are to the one general verb as so many modulated echoes of 
one voice. But in grammar it is convenient to treat of 
concrete verbs as of so many distinct verbs. They are the 
words that distinctly assert. Variations of order show, here 
and there, that a verb is employed, not to assert a fact, but 
to express a wish, to give a command, or to ask a question. 
These modified uses are not immediately noticed here. The 
chief use of the verb is first of all to be considered, and must 
be viewed in connection with the synthetic forms employed in 
making definite assertions. In Latin these forms are com- 
paratively numerous ; in mod«m English they are remarkably 

300 syntax: examples. 

few. [See §§ 20, 21.] When the form of a verb is synthetic, 
as in the Latin word regutnus (we rule), there are seen two 
elements so connected as to make one word. And, to a 
slight extent, the same kind of synthesis is observed in 
English, as in the sentences * He comes ' and ' He idles. ^ In 
each of these instances the personal suffix s, when connected 
with a stem, makes a predicative verb that tells something of 
the subject. The stem idle supplies the attributive element 
in the verb, and s makes the assertion. But assertions clearly 
expressed are found in many English sentences where no 
suffix is seen having the use of the s in idles. Our verbs 
have mostly lost their personal suffixes or inflexions. There 
are retained in our analytic tongue only a few traces of the 
several suffixes that in cognate languages limit or define 
meanings in the asserting words called verbs. In the three 
languages chiefly referred to — Sanscrit, Greek, and Latin — 
the personal suffixes of verbs have forms more or less like 
those shown in the appended table. The meanings here 
given are accepted as, at least, highly probable : — 


Forins. Meanings. Forms. Meanings. 







mas "we 

tas ye 

nti j they 

In Latin es is the root of the present in the abstract verb 
{esse), and suffixes essentially like those noticed here are 
seen in the forms su-m (I am), es (thou art), es-t (he is), 
s-u-mus (we are), es-tis (ye are), s-u-nt (they are). The suf- 
fixes, as here understood, connect with the stem a force of 
assertion, and define, with regard to both number and person, 
the subjects of the six assertions. Historically speaking, these 
suffixes are described as forms originally belonging to pro- 
nouns. But in the act of connecting any one of the suffixes 
with the stem es, it is implied that existence (denoted by the 
stem) belongs to the subject denoted by the suffix. The 
meaning of the stem es is abstract, and consequently the 
assertion made by means of any one of these suffixes must be 
abstract. In other words, the verb so formed is not predi- 
cative. But there are numerous stems denoting (without 
assertion) special acts, such as are indicated by the stems 
due, reg, and scrlh, seen in the verbs duc-o (I lead), reg-o (I 
rule), and scrib-o (I write). These are concrete verbs of which 
the stems, when connected with inflexional suffixes, make 

VERBS. 301 

definite assertions in tlie examples already given, as also in 
regi-t (he rule-s), regi-mus (we rule), and regu-nt (they rule). 
In one of these latter instances the English verb (so far like 
the Latin) has a limiting or definitive form (rule-s) — a form 
showing both the number and the person of the subject. But 
this is an exceptional instance of likeness ; the two languages 
difier widely from each other in their modes of constructing 
finite verbs, or forms of clear assertion. In Latin assertions 
are, as we have seen, made definite by means of suffixes, and 
are so complete that the form called the verb is, in fact, the 
compendious form of a whole sentence. In English, on the 
other hand, such forms as ebh, land, and water (often used 
as nouns), or such as idle, open, and warm (often used as ad- 
jectives), may, without any alteration or addition, serve well 
as verbs. Similar forms, aided by personal suffixes, served 
also as verbs in the English speech of the oldest time. Those 
suffixes are now mostly lost, and the result is this : many 
forms serving as nouns serve also as verbs. The meanings or 
uses of these forms must, therefore, be shown by means of their 
context, as in the following sentences : — ' We see land,'' ' We 
land ; ' ' There is an open door,' 'We open the door.' Modern 
English is, in several respects, a tongue more like the Chinese 
than like the Latin written by Sallust, by Livy, and by Tacitus. 
Our limited and definite forms of assertion are mostly defined 
by their context. They should not be confused with words 
called ' verbal,' with regard to their forms, though serving as 
nouns or as adjectives. Predicates include often such words 
as the following : — 'loving,' 'beloved,' 'writing,' and 'written.' 
These forms include the stems of verbs, and may therefore be 
called verbal ; but they are not verbs, or words that assert. 
Such forms as 'heard,' 'held,' 'found,' and 'loved' serve 
often as verbs ; but they may also serve as adjectives follow- 
ing nouns, or as complements following the abstract verb to 
he. Every verbal form ending in ing belongs practically to 
one of the classes, nouns and adjectives. Verbal nouns in 
ing denoting transitive actions, and consequently followed by 
objects, are sometimes called ' Gerunds.' \^See § 48.] Verbal 
adjectives, named with respect to their forms, are often called 
' Participles.' 

2. The classification of verbs given already (in § 11) is 
not strictly regarded in practice. English writers have 
claimed great freedom in their treatment of the verbs 
severally called 'intransitive' and 'transitive,' and in their 
jises of verbal forms having tj^e meanings called ' intransitive,' 

302 syntax: examples. 

Hransitive,' and * passive.' No strict rule can be maintained 
in opposition to liberty warranted by general usage ; but it 
is often convenient to observe the different uses of similar 
forms. The verbs lie and rise (intransitive), contrasted with 
lay and raise (transitive), may serve as examples. The imper- 
sonal verb with a dative me ( = to me) occurs often in old 
literature. A dative me (= for me) following personal verbs 
is sometimes used by Shakespeare, and is found in the Bible. 
This construction is unusual in modern literature, and has 
been sometimes treated as expletive, but is not obsolete in 
conversation. Like him^ as employed in some passages, me 
in the construction referred to is, in form and in meaning, a 
dative case. Here and there the object it follows a verb, so 
as to indicate some vague transitive meaning. In old litera- 
ture, and here and there in modern verse, verbs used with 
reflex meanings are followed by personal pronouns having 
simple forms hke him and thee ; but in modern literature the 
compounds himself, yourselves, etc., are substituted. The 
words each other and one another serve as the objects of verbs 
intended to denote reciprocal actions. The meanings of certain 
verbs are often modified by particles immediately following, 
especially by the particles at, of, off, out, to, and up. Verbs having 
their meanings thus modified have sometimes been called ' pre- 
position-verbs ; ' but it is clear that the use of a particle modi- 
fying the force of a verb must be adverbial. In parsing, the 
verb and its particle may be taken together. Particles serve 
often to modify the meanings of perfect participles. Lastly, 
it may be noticed here, that good authors here and there in- 
troduce unusual forms as well as uncommon uses of verbs, 
such as ' glooms,^ employed by Goldsmith, and ' blooms ' (tran- 
sitive), employed by Keats. 

Examples. — 1. E.I,: Ic bind-e, >u bind-est, he bind-e^, we bind-a-S, 
ge bind-a6, hi bind-a'S ; bind [Imperative singular], bind-a^ [Imperative 
plural]. E.II. : Ic bind-e, \>u bind-est, he bind-eth, we bind-eth [South 
Dialect], we bind-en [Midland], we bind-es [North] ; bind [Imperative 
singular], bind-eth [Imperative plural]. ' Fal [mountayns] upon us now 
and hyde us.' [These were Imperative forms plural in the North Dialect.] 
M.E. : I bind, thou bind-est [mostly obsolete], he bind-eth [mostly obso- 
lete], he bind-s, we bind, you bind, they bind ; bind [Imperative singular 
or plural]. Past. — E.I. : Ic band, we bund-on. E.II. : Ic bond, we bond- 
en. M.E. : I bound, we bound. [See § 20.] 

2. ' The table moves.' ' The table is moved.' ' Here is a house to be 
sold' ' Here is a house to let' ' We were next shown Edward the Confes- 
sor's tomb.' — AuBisoK. ' My father was possessed of a small living.' — 
GrOLDSMiTH. * There is more to be said.' * There is something more to tell.' 
' Surely you dream.' * We have dreamed a dream' * She [a ship] walks 

verbs: concords. 303 

the -waters.' — Wilsok. • This ivory feels smooth.' ' He stole the money.' 
' They stole away.' ' There is much to admire in this picture.' ' Methinks 
[ = To me it seems] I hear a voice.' * Sche was vanyssht riht as hir liste [as 
was pleasing to her].' — Gower. ' It me for thynketh [= seems evil to me].' 
— Langland. ' I say, knock me at this gate, and rap m£ well [ = knock 
for me]' — Shakespeake. 'Fetch me the books.' 'Solomon hiiilt kim[^ 
for him] an house. ... I builded me houses, I planted me vineyards.' — 
Bible. • Foot it featly here and there.' — Shakespeare. ' Come, and trip it 
as we go.' — Milton. ' Haste thee, nymph ! ' — Milton. ' They sate them 
down.' — SouTHEY. ' They defended themselves.' — Scott. 'Without laws 
the people would destroy one another.' ' These two friends helped each 
other.' ' The parson and the stranger shook one another lovingly by the 
hand.' — Fielding. ' The treasure was carriecZ home.' 'Their scheme was 
-well carried out.' ' His remarks were well pointed.' * His error was 
pointed out.' ' He was pointed at and laughed at.' ' I have known a piece, 
with not one jest in it, shrugged into popularity.' — Goldsmith. 

' No more thy glassy brook reflects the day, 
But, choked with sedges, works its weedy way.' — Goldsmith. 

' There the black gibbet glooms' ' What sorro-ws gloomed that parting 
day ! ' — Goldsmith. ' I readily closed with the offer.' ' The poor exiles 
.... fond^.y looked their last.' 'If the cakes ate short, and crisp, they 
were made by Olivia.' ' I therefore made directly homewards.' — Gold- 
smith. ' It is that within us which ma^^s /or righteousness.' — M. Arnold. 
' No stationary steeds cough their own knell.' — Cq-wpeb. ' While barred 
clouds bloom the soft-dying day.' — EIeats. ' Do as you would be done by.' 
' I do not enter into these metaphysical distinctions.' — Burke. ' Not to 
know me argues yourselves unknown.' — Milton. [argues here = shows, 
or proves.] ' This young beginners should be entered in and she-wn the 
use of.' — Locke. ' I was not swaddled, and rocked, and dandled into a 
legislator.' — Burke. * ' I have walked my clothes dry.' — Lord Lytton. 
[An extreme example of brevity, and a bold license. The -writer means 
to say, 'I have walked until my clothes have become dry.'] 


Observations. — 1. The Latin verb agrees -with tlie subject 
in number and person. Ex. : reg-o (I rule), regi-mus (we 
rule), regi-tis (you rule), regu-nt (they rule), rex-i (I ruled), 
rex-i-t (he ruled), rex-i-mus (we ruled), rex-i-stis (you ruled), 
rex-e-mnt (they ruled). Latin examples are given, because 
the quoted rule belongs truly to Latin grammar. In the 
word rex-i-mus the personal ending mus is the part that ex- 
presses a concord. The Latin words given here have several 
changes. The English words show only one change — the 
addition of d, an ending denoting a past time, but indicating 
neither number nor person. The form * rule-d * may follow 
anyone of the pronouns 'I,' 'he,' 'we,' 'you,' and 'they.' 
Here, therefore, the English verb does not express a distinct 
Concord with any subject. She Latin rule of concord relates 

304 syntax: examples. 

to the personal inflexions by which crnde verbal forms 
are made ' finite ' or limited. ' The copnla, or bond, when 
distinct [^.e. when set apart, as in Vir est bonus], is generally 
some finite part of the verb of being, sum. Bnt in general 
the predicate and the copula are blended together in one finite, 
predicative verb. Ex. : Ego disc-o (I learn, or am learning) ; 
Homines spira-nt (Men breathe, or are breathing). Here, 
strictly speaking, the crude forms (disc, spira) are the pre- 
dicates, and the endings (o, nt) are the copulas.' — Dr. Ken- 
nedy. It is thus seen that, in Latin, the concords of the 
verb are denoted by personal endings distinctly connecting 
assertions with the subjects ' I,' ' thou,' 'he,' ' we,' 'you,' and 
' they.' But, setting aside the forms mostly obsolete (writ-es^, 
wvit-eth, wrot-est), our predicative verb has only three conver- 
sational forms that assert — write, writes, wrote. Of these only 
one (writes) is strictly limited as to both number and person. 
In writes the form indicates concord with a single subject of 
the third person. But no concord is thus indicated in any 
one of the following sentences: — ' I write,' ' he wrote,' 'we 
wrote,' ' they wrote.' The form wrote may follow any personal 
pronoun, excepting thou. It is clear, then, that the rule, 
strictly understood, belongs to Latin and other highly in- 
flexional tongues. In English our main facts of concord are 
these : — (1) The verb does not contradict the number or the 
person of the subject. (2) Where there is a form showing 
the distinct concord required, that form is employed, as in ' he 
writes.^ (3) A ' plural verb ' may have a form used in 
speaking of one ; a ' verb in the singular ' may have a form 
used in speaking of many. As regards both number and 
person, the English verb is mostly vague, and may have any 
one of several relations. Its intended relation to a certain 
subject is usually shown, not by its form, but by its position 
in a sentence. In forms distinctly denoting personal concords, 
English verbs of the oldest known time were defective, 
especially in the plural. In E.I. the three persons plural of 
the Present all ended alike in aS, for which Old English sub- 
stituted eth in the Southern Dialect, and en in the Midland, 
while es (or is or ys) in the Northern was the regular ending 
of the second and third persons. For the three persons plural 
of the Past the earliest ending was on (or un), which followed 
d in weak verbs, and made the final syllable don (or dun). In 
the Southern as in the Midland Dialect of E.II. e took the 
place of (or u). The final n was often dropped, or the two 
letters en were omitted ; so that don was changed to den, then 

verbs: concords. 305 

to de, and lastly to d. Meanwhile the Northern Dialect made 
the three persons, singular and plural, of weak verbs end alike 
in it (or ed) for the Past. It has been observed that, in the 
same dialect, the second and third persons in the singular 
and in the plural of the Present ended usually in es (or is or 
ys). In Old English, therefore, the plural endings eth 
(Southern), en (Midland), and es (Northern) — considered as 
signs of personal concords — were made vague and useless. 
They were still employed now and then in the literature of 
the sixteenth century, when en was allowed to fall into disuse 
(though preserved in some dialects), while es (or is) remained 
as a plural ending belonging mostly to the dialect called 

* Scottish.' Plural verbs ending in s are to be found in old 
copies of Shakespeare, though in modern editions our usual 
forms have been mostly substituted. In one place, at least, 
the old plural makes a rhyme, and has consequently been 
spared (in Macbeth, Act ii. so. 1). In the singular the ending 
eth (as well as s) was long retained in literature. Though 
still preserved in the Bible, and here and there employed as 
an archaism in poetry, eth is now obsolete in conversation, 
and its substitute is s, which is practically our only remaining 
ending that shows a distinct concord. 

2. The subject is often a single noun, or a pronoun, but may 
include several nouns, or may consist of a phrase or of a clause. 
\_See §§ 43, 44.] Nouns are noticed in the first place. Their 
required concords are but partly indicated by forms ; their 
meanings supply better guidance. Where the intention is to 
speak of one, the verb is singular ; where the intention is to 
speak of two, or of more, the verb is plural. The form of a 
noun may be plural (or may look like a plural) while the 
concord required may be siugular. Nouns connected by and 
require mostly (not always) a plural verb, while nouns con- 
nected by or (or by nor) are usually followed by a singular. 
Where several nouns are placed in a series, and collectively 
form a subject, and often precedes the last noun, and the 
verb is usually (not always) plural. Several verbs may belong 
to one subject. The words it is have the uses of c'est and 
ce sonb in French, and may serve to introduce a subject of any 

Examples. — 1. E.I. : 'We forgif-a-S ilrnm gyltendum \yfe forgive 
our debtors].' ' Gif ge so'Slice ha lufl-a« >e e6w lufl-atS [If ye truly love 
those that love you], hwylce mede habb-a^ ge 1 [what meed have ye ?] ' 

♦ We ne scul-on bees gel^fan [We shall not believe that = We must not 
b|Jieve that].' ' Ge geh^rd-on bset ^jecweden waes [Ye heard what was 
said].' E.ll. : 'He answer-ep [He awsi^ers].' ' We vorlet-eJ» oure yelderea 

306 syntax: examples. 

[We forgive our debtors.]' — Dan Michel. 'Whil 30 habb-e> wyt at 
wolde [While ye have wit at command] sech-e]? ore soule bote \^seek your 
soul's good].' — Proverbs of Hendyng. 'Hylybb-e|> [They ^i?;(5], hy by-ejj 
zikere [they ie safe].' — Dan Michel. *Wefor3ev-en oure dettours [We 
forgive our debtors].' — Reliquice Ant. i. 31. ' No-w we leu-eii Joseph, and 
of >e king carp-en [Now we leave Joseph, and carp of the king].'— Joseph 
of Arimathie. ' Til ye mebring-en Beniamin [Until ye bri7ig me Benjamin].' 
— Genesis and Exodus. ' I tolde hem, that in oure contree wer-en trees, 
that bar-en a fniyt, that becom-en briddes [birds] fleeynge : and tho that 
fell-en in the water lyv-en, and t\\Q\th.Q,t fall-en on the erthe dy-en anon.* 
— Sib John Mandbville. ' Lauerd [Lord], what is man j^at jjou min-es of 
him ? ' — Northumbrian Psalter. ' Thou has made heven and erth.' — Towneley 
Mysteries. ' Oppen-es your yates [gates] wide, Yhe \>aX princes ere [are] in 
pride. . . . Bliss-es to Lauerd [Bless the Lord] with all your might, Alle [ye] 
his aungels that ere [are] bright.' — Northumbrian Psalter. ' He oft dote-s 
.... his tung [tongue] fayl-es .... his bak [back] wax-es croked .... 
his eres [ears] wax-es deef .... his wyttes [wits] fayl-es.^ — Hampole. 
' Grret fisches et-es the smale.' — Metrical Homilies. ' Thus the losels [worth- 
less men] strives [argue] and says' — Skelton. ' Your clokes smelleth 
musty.' * Such tunges [tongues] .... hath made great diuision.' — 
Skelton. ' Anciene writtaris commonlie comparis it [the chameleon] to 
ane flatterare.' — Buchanan. ' The stateliness of houses, the goodliness of 
trees, when we behold them, delighteth the eye.' — Hooker. 

* And then the whole quire hold their hips and laugh, 
And waxen in their mirth.' — Shakespeare. 

' Whiles I threat, he lives : 
Words to the heat of deeds too cold breath gives. 
I go, and it is done.' — Shakespeare, Macbeth, ii. 1, 

• Hark! hark! the lark at heaven's gate sings, 

And Phoebus gins arise. 
His steeds to water at those springs 
On chaliced flowers that lies.' 

Shakespeare, Cymbeline, li. 3. 

*No"W rebels move prevails with words 
Than drawgoons [dragoons] does with guns and swords .... 
Yea, those that were the greatest rogues 
Follows them over hills and bogues [bogs].' 

Cjmlasd, The Highland Host, 1697. 

2. * One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh.' — 
Bible. ' Whatsoever it be that moveth laughter, it must he new.' — Hobbes. 
' The use of fraudulent weights and measures was severely punished in the 
middle ages.' — Gr. * A few hours' walking was enough to complete the 
journey.' — Gr. ' He who fair and softly goes steadily forward will sooner 
be at his journey's end than he that runs after every one he meets.' — 
Locke. ' Thou'll break my heart.'— Burns. [The old Northern form for 
wilt = will.] ' His eyes were with his heart, and that was far away.' — 
Lord Byron. * There are some gentlefolks below.' — Sheridan. ' Eound 
about him were numberless herds of kine.' — Longfellow. ' His stores of 
oatmeal tiere brought out; kine were slaughtered.' — Lord Macaulat. ' The 
proud are taught to taste of pain.' — Gray. [Many adjectival forms pre- 


ceded by the serve as plural subjects.] ' Blessed are the undefiled in the 
way.* — Bible. ' His voice, his figure, and attitudes are all admirable.' — Gold- 
smith. ' Gold and cotton, banks and railways, crowded ports and populous 
cities — these are not the elements that constitute a great nation.' — Euskin. 
' To him [there is] no high, no low, no great, no small.' — Pope. ' In 
old times, fire, air, water, and earth were called " the four elements.'^ ' 
— G. ' He fills, he hounds, connects, and equals all.' — Pope. • It is the 
spirit of the English constitution which, infused through the mighty mass, 
pervades, feeds, unites, invigorates, vivifies every part of the empire.' — 
Btjrke. ' Patience and perseverance remove mountains.' — L. Mubrat. 
'Charles and Henry are here.' — G. 'Blue and yellow make green.' — 
Mason, English Grammar, ' A mixture of blue and yellow makes green.' 
— G. ' In every tribe superstition, or gratitude, or fortune, has exalted a 
particular family.' ' It is frosty this morning.' — G. ' It is six weeks ago ' 
(= the time, six weeks, is gone). 'It is I.' — Bihle. 'It is those men 
who deserve well of their country. . . . It is the dews and showers that 
make the grass grow.' — Cobbett. ' It is the rain and the fog that make 
England gloomy [Cast la pluie et le brouillard qui attristent V Angleterre']. 
. , . It is the kings who are the chiefs of the peoples [Ce sont les rois qui 
sont les chefs des nations'].' — Brachet, French Grammar. 

* It was the choristers who went to meet 
The train, and now were entering the first street.' — Leigh Hunt. 

Special Observations. — 1. The following verbs (sometimes 
called ' Prceterito-Prcesentia ') liave now, in the Present, the 
forms that in ancient times belonged to the Past — can, shall, 
will, may, ought, must. The intransitive verb dare (= venture) 
is historically one of this class, and, like the six other verbs 
named here, should have no final s in the third person singular 
of the Present ; but this old and intransitive verb dare (= to 
venture) is often confused with the new and transitive verb 
dare (= to challenge), to which the s in the Present properly 
belongs. The Past of the old verb dare (= venture) is durst ; 
but the Past of the new verb dare (= challenge) is dared. 
The verb need should rightly have a final s in the third person 
singular of the Present ; but the form need is sometimes em- 
ployed as if the verb belonged to the class of old verbs repre- 
sented by can. It will be remembered that there is an adverb 
needs, which in some places looks like a verb. The adverb 
(a case of nedd, a noun) had originally the instrumental form 
nede (= by force), for which the genitive form nedes was 
afterwards substituted. 

2. The following /o7*m5 of nouns should here be noticed : — 
(a) forms used alike in the singular and in the plural ; (h) 
forms denoting the singular, but placed with plural verbs ; (c) 
plural forms sometimes followed by verbs in the singular; 
(^ those looking like plurals and often followed by plural 
verbs ; (e) numerals treated as nouns. 

X 2 

308 syntax: examples. 

3. A collective noun may denote unity or plurality. In the 
former case the verb is singular ; in the latter the verb is 
plural. The following are examples of collective nouns: — 
aristocracy^ college, commons, committee, congregation, majority, 
minority, mob, nobility, people, school. Adjectival forms, pre- 
ceded by the, serve as collective nouns, often requiring plural 

4. Some vague words used as nouns are singular ; others 
are plural ; some may be either singular or plural. 

Singular. Plural. Singular or Plural. 

another much ought 

anybody nobody self 

each nothing what 

either nought 

everybody one 

both noughts 

few ones 

many others 

nobodies several 

all some 

any such 

enough the same 

5. Vague words used as adjectives often indicate the con- 
cords that follow. For instance, a series of nouns, each pre- 
ceded by every, will be followed by a singular verb. 

The Singular follows — another, each, every, either, many a, much, 
neither, a certain. 

The Plural follows — certain (= the obsolete word divers), few, many, 
other, several ( = the obsolete word divers). 

Either the Singular or the Plural may follow — all, any, enough, 
( = enow), no ( = not any), some, such, the same, what. 

6. Queries respecting rules of concord are often suggested 
by placing together — apparently as the subjects of one verb — 
nouns or pronouns differing in number or in person, or in 
both. The student's aim should be to avoid, as far as pos- 
sible, the ellipses here referred to. [See § 65.] To justify 
them, these three ' rules ' are given in some books : — The 
verb agrees with the nearer subject ; the plural comes next 
before the verb, and the verb is plural ; the verb agrees with 
the first person rather than with the second, and with the 
second rather than with the third. 

7. In apposition, nouns and pronouns of different numbers 
may be placed together. The verb agrees in number with 
the word or the words made chiefly prominent. 

8. The relative, by means of its position, represents the 
number and the person of the antecedent. Accordingly, when 
a relative is the subject, the required number and the person 
of the verb are shown by a reference to the antecedent. 

9. An apparent case of bad grammar is often a fair ex- 
ception, or one that may be readily justified by reference to 
the author's meaning. 


10. Errors are often suggested by words coming in 
between the subject and the verb, and in many other cases 
the number of the subject is forgotten. 

Special Examples. — 1. ' pe more J>at a mon can [ = knows], J?e more 
wiirtje is he.' — Robert of Gtlotjcbster. ' Thou can.'' — Gr. [In O.E. the st 
of the second person is often dropped in ca7i, shall, will, etc.] ' No man 
dar entren in to it.' — Sir John Mandevilie. ' I dare do all that may become 
a man, Who dares do more is none. . . . "What need a man care ? ' — Shake- 
speare. ' He will rise and give him as many as he needeth! — Bible. ' One 
need only read.' — Pope. ' To fly from need not be to hate mankind.' — 

2. (a) ' prytty j'ousend pound.^ — Rob. of Gloucester, (a) ' The 
days of our years are three score years and ten.' — Bible. ' The Queen took 
upon herself to grant patents of monopoly by scores.' — Macaulay. [In 
many places the plural form scores occurs, but has no numeral prefixed.] 
(a) 'William loste \>re >e beste kors ]?at .... were ystyked ry3t vnderhym.' 
— John of Trevisa. (6) ' There were forty-seven sail of the line.' — Sotjthey. 
(h) ' There were Beaumont's foot.' — Macaulay. (b) • Ten sail of the line 
were seen.' (b) ' One thousand cannon were landed.' — Gr. (c) ' The wages of 
sin is death.' — Bible. (<?) ' Mathematics becomes the instrument of Attro- 
nomy and Physics.' — Lewes, (c) ' The Mathematics lead us to lay out of 
account all that is not proved.' — Sir W. Hamilton.' (c) 'Every twenty 
paces gives you the prospect of some villa.' — Lady Montague, (c) ' Six- 
pence is a low price.' (c) ' Where is the hundred pounds ? ' (c) ' Three- 
fourths is a greater share than two-thirds [is].' — Gr. 

(d) ' The noun abns, sometimes preceded by an and followed by a 
singular verb (often by a plural), = E.I. (Blmese (sing.) = Greek ix^-n^xoaiivf). 
(d) The apparently plural form riches = O.E. richesse (singular, with 
richesses for the plural), {d) The noun summons (singular, with the plural 
form summonses) = O.F. semonse. (d) The apparently plural form eaves = 
E.I. yfes [singular] = a margin, but in M.E. is followed by a plural verb.' 
— G. (d) 'The amends was.' — Robert of Bkunnb. {d) 'Government is 
a means for the attainment of an end.'— Macatjlay. (d) ' Every means 
was lawful.' — Gibbon, (d) ' Every means was used.' — ELa.llam. (d) ' Are 
there no means for helping these men ? ' — G. (d) * Much pains has been 
taken.' (d) ' Great pains were taken to make the work complete.' — G. (d) 
' A certain man .... asked an alms.' — Bible. 'The very alms they receive 
are the wages of idleness.' — Addison, (d) ' There are great odds.' — 
Hooker, (d) * On which side do the odds lie ? ' — Locke, (d) ' What's the 
odds? ' — G. (d) ' 111 news rides fast while good news baits.' — Melton, (d) 
'is there any news in the paper?' — G. (d) 'He fetched up the bag in 
which was the provisions.' — De Foe. (e) ' The Forty are but men.' — 
Byron, (e) ' The Ten appointed the Three who were especially active.' — G. 

3. • As soon as the assembly was complete. . . . The cavalry are obliged to 
climb the hill.' — Gibbon. ' No class requires more to be cautioned.' — 
Johnson. ♦ Thanne longen folk to gon on pilgrimages.' — Chaucer. ' Not 
80 thinketh the folk of the village.' — Longfellow. ' The whole herd of 
cattle was there collected.' — G. ' There was nigh unto the mountains a 
great herd of swine feeding.' — Bible. * ' These kind of people are not 
to be trusted.'— G. [The construction is usual, but a here = kind.] 
' Mankind is appointed to live in a future state.'— Butler. 'The party 
%i8trusts its own leaders.* — G. ' ThI people is one.' ' The people have as 

810 syntax: examples. 

many opinions as heads.' — G-. • The people, however fallen, are still men. 
Trade's unfeeling train usur-p the land.' — Gtoldsmith. ' Blessed are the 
undefiled. . . . Blessed are the merciful. . . . The poor is separated from his 
neighbour.' — Bible. ' The proud are taught to taste of pain.' — Gkay. 

4. ' All are but parts of one stupendous whole.' — Pope. * All is vanity.* 
— Bible. * All is still.' — Scott. ' All was done that charity could do.' — 
BuHKE. ' Each gives each a double charm.' — Dyer. * Enough is as good 
as a feast.' — G. ' Enough, alas ! in humble homes remain! — Byron. ' Are 
there few that be saved ? . . . . Many are called, but few \are\ chosen.' — Bible. 

* There's but little to say for him ; still there's a little to be said.' • There 
were many coming and going.' — Bible. ' Much has been said, and more 
remains to be told.' — G. ' Nobody cares for me.' — Burns. * My right there 
is none to dispute.' — Cowper. ' Of all that property nothing now remains! 
— G. ' Some say the " Pilgrim's Progress " is not mine.' — Bunyan. 

* What's gone, and what's past hope. Should be past grief.' — Shakespeare. 
' At once came forth whatever creeps! — Mixton. * The whole of the after- 
noon was wasted.' — G. \^ee § 44, Words, 5.] 

5. ' Ml the members of that one body, being many, are one body.' — 

' Each purple peak, each flinty spire, 
Was bathed in floods of living fire.' — Scott. 

* Every man of them was employed in praising his friends.' — Goldsmith. 

* Every age, every rank, every condition of life has its own trials.' — G. 
' Many a flower is born to blush unseen.' — Gray. • No white man, no 
black man is a slave in this land.' — G. [See § 46, Words, 5.] 

6. ' You and I are invited.' [* The verb is in the plural, and in the 
first person, if the first person is named.' — Angus.] ' You and he are 
good friends.' [' The verb is in the second person, if the second person is 
named.' — Angus.] * ' You, and not I, were there.' * ' He, and not you, is 
chargeable with that fault.' [' The verb agrees with the affirmative pro- 
noun.' — Angus.] * ' Neither you nor I am right.' * ' They or I am in fault.' 

* ' Either you or he is wrong.' * ' Neither he nor they are satisfied.' ' Neither 
the captain nor the sailors were saved.' — G. [These examples, selected 
from several well-known books, are not recommended. Their discords 
arise from hasty ellipses, and to justify these licenses certain * rules ' have 
been invented. It is desirable to avoid harsh constructions, and in many 
instances it is easy. For example, instead of saying 'They or I am in fault,' 
it is easy to say, ' The fault must be theirs or mine.' Many difficulties in 
analysis arise from ellipses, which belong to two classes. In the former 
the word already used is omitted ; in the latter we omit a similar word. 
The ellipses here noticed belong to the latter class. See § 66.] 

7. ' All, all the scene, in short — sky, earth, and sea — 

Breathes, like a bright-eyed face that laughs out openly.' 

Leigh Hunt. 

[Here s = scene.'] ' The oak and the ehn have, each, a distinct cha- 
racter.' — GiLPiN. * We have turned, every one, to his own way.' — Bible. ' A 
torch, snuff dind. all, goes out in a moment, when dipped in the vapour.' — 

' Oh, 'twas a sight — that heaven, that child — 
A scene that might have well beguiled 
Ev'n haughty Eblis of a sigh 
For glories lost and peace gone by ! ' — Moore. 

verbs: concords. 311 

8. 'It was seen by the man who is here.' ' It was seen by the men who 
are here.' * Here is the hoicse that was sold.' * Here are the houses that were 
sold.' ' My yWew<^ who ^wows the way will guide you.' ' Every wor^i that 
was written was well chosen.' ' All [i.e. the whole story] that has been told 
is true.'— Gr. ' All [i.e. all the persons] that hate me whisper together 
against me.' — Bible. [To find the right number and person of a verb having 
for s a relative, we refer to the antecedent.] ' They that make them [idols] 
are like unto them. . . . Here is the mind which hath wisdom.' — Bible, ' These 
are not the elements that constitute a great nation.' — Ruskin. ' It is not 
the composition of the piece, but the number of starts and incidents that 
may be introduced that elicits applause.' — Goldsmith. ' It is that within 
us which makes for righteousness.' — M. Arnold. [The relative which = s, 
and the antecedent = the demonstrative pronoun that.] 

9. * The Pleasures of Memory, by Rogers, was published in 1 792. Tales 
of the Hall, by Crabbe, tf^rts published in 1819.' — Gr. [In each instance s 
= the name of a book.] ' " Slow and sure " wins the race ' [i.e. the method 
indicated by the proverb uuins]. ' Two and two makes four.' — Popb. * Five 
dozen and half a score makes seventy.' — Gr. [The sum 60 + 10 = 70.] 
' The mind and the spirit remains invincible.' — Milton, [s = two names 
of one force = the will.] * The spectator and historian of his day has 
observed.' — Gibbon, [s = two titles of one author.] ' The saint, the father, 
and the husband, prays.' — Burns, [s = three titles of one man.] ' Here'* 
the pen and ink.' ' Here's a knife and fork.' ' Where's my hat and stick ? 
'Two shillings and sixpence is the right change for half a crown.' — G. 'The 
hue and cry of the country pursues him.' — Junius. [Two words very 
closely associated are often treated as making one name.] 

'Ah, then and there was hurrying to and fro, 
And gathering tears, and tremblings of distress.' — Byron. 

[The verb is expressed in the first sentence, and the following two sen- 
tences are elliptical ; in each were is omitted.] 

' Our own ?ieart, and not other men's opinions, 
Forms our true honour.' — Coleridge. 

[The writer gives the verb of the affirmative sentence, and ormtsform 
in the negative sentence. See § 65.] 

10. * ' The richness of her arms and apparel were conspicuous.' — Gibbon. 

* 'Nothing but clearness and simplicity are desirable.' — Maunder. * ' The 
use of fraudulent measures and weights were severely punished in the 
middle ages.' *' Neither Charles nor Henry were invited.' — G. * ' Neither 
physic nor law are to be practically known from books.' — Fielding. * ' Neither 
the white man nor the black man are slaves in our land.' — G. [is a slave.] 

* • How happy it is that neither of us were ill.' — Johnson. * ' Morning or 
evening are the best times for study.' — G. * ' The number of inhabitants 
were not more than four millions.' — Smollett. * ' Only a few hours' waZArwj^ 
were required to cross the plain.' [was ; s = walking.] * ' The herd is 
carried home to their respective owners.' — Gilpin. * ' Where is my gloves? ' 
[Usage alone can supply rules for the verbs rightly following such nouns as 
these : — scissors, billiards, and gloves.] * 'Nought but shadowy forms were 
seen to move.' — Thomson. * 'Each have stamped their own impress on 
the character of the people.' — Alison. [Each is strictly a singular form.] 

* ♦ Mr. Scott with his two sons were there.' ' The house with all the out- 
lilildings were sold.' [with cannot will take the place of and.] * 'Homer, 

312 syntax: examples. 

as well as Virgil, were translated and studied on the banks of the Ehine.' 
— Gibbon. * ' The poor man as well as the rich pat/ taxes.' [pays ; the 
phrase as well as cannot well take the place of and.] * ' This letter is one 
of the best [letters] that has been written by Lord Byron.' — Leigh Hunt. 
* ' We have here one of the best books that has been lately published.' 
[Omit that has been, or write have instead of has.] 


Observations. — 1. A single Noun- Phrase is placed in 
concord with a verb of the third person singular. 

2. A single Noun-Phrase, set in apposition with ^Y, or 
with a singular noun, is placed in concord with a verb in the 

3. Two or several Noun-Phrases may be placed in concord 
with a verb in the Singular. 

4. Two or several Noun-Phrases, introduced by it, may 
form the subject of a verb in the Singular. 

5. Two or several Noun-Phrases may be collectively re- 
presented by tJiis, followed by a verb in the Singular. 

6. Two or several Noun- Phrases are sometimes followed 
by a verb in the Plural. 

Examples. — 1. 'To relieve the wretched was his pride.' — Goldsmith. 
' To be a fine gentleman is to be a generous and brave man.' — Steele. [See 
§ 44, Phrases, 2.] 

2. ' It is for the guilty to live in fear.' — Cobbett. [See § 44, Phrases, 3.] 

3. * To subsist in lasting monuments, to live in their productions, to 
exist in their names .... was large satisfaction.* — Sib T. Bbownb. 

' To gild refined gold, to paint the lily, 
To throw a perfume on the violet, 
To smooth the ice, or add another hue 
Unto the rainbow .... 
Is wasteful and ridiculous excess.' — Shakespbabb 

' To lodge in a garret .... to dine in a cellar .... to translate ten 
hours a day .... to be hunted by bailiffs .... to die in a hospital, and 
to be buried in a parish vault, was the fate of more than one writer.' — 

4. ' It is vain to rise up early, to sit up late.' — Bible. 

* . . . . To die, and [to] go we know not where ; 

To lie in cold obstruction .... 

To be imprisoned in the viewless winds 

'tis too horrible.' — Shakespeare, 

5. ' To sit on rocks, to muse on flood and fell .... this is not solitude.' 
— Byron. ' To suffer woes .... to forgive wrongs .... to defy Power 
.... to love .... to hope .... this is to be good.' — Shelley. 

6. ' To be read by bare inscriptions, to hope for eternity by enigmatical 
epithets, or [by] first letters of our names, to be studied by antiquarians 
. ... are eold consolations.' — Sib T. Bbowne. 



Observations. — 1. A single Noun-Clanse is placed in con- 
cord with a verb of the third person singular. 

2. A single Nonn-Clause, set in apposition with it, or 
with a singular noun, is placed in concord with a verb in the 

3. Two or several Noun-Clauses, set in apposition with it, 
or with a singular noun, may be placed in concord with a 
verb in the Singular. 

4. Two or several Noun- Clauses are sometimes placed in 
concord with a verb in the Plural. 

Examples. — 1. ' That he stooped, to accommodate himself to the people, 
is sufficiently apparent.' — "Worbsworth. 

2. ' It was in this way that our ancestors reasoned. It is well known 
t?iat he made less use than any other eminent writer of those strong^ plain 
words, of which the roots lie in the inmost depths of our language.' — 
Macattlat. ' It is not true that he said that.' — Mason. [See § 43, p. 

5. ' It is quite clear to me— that Southampton is the only person to 
whom Shakespeare promises immortality ; that the Sonnets are dedicated 
by W. H. to Southampton, [and] that W. H., who calls himself Mr., cannot 
be a nobleman.' — Athenceum. 

4. ' That, without the consent of the representatives of the nation, no 
legislative act could he passed .... that no man could be imprisoned 
.... that no tool of power could plead the royal command, as a justifi- 
cation for violating any right of the humblest subject, were held, both by 
Whigs and Tories, to be fundamental laws of the realm.' — Macauiay. 
[This is not an example of the writer's ordinary style.] 


Observations. — 1. A mood is the mode or manner in which 
verbs are used in speaking of acts that really take place, or of 
our own notions respecting acts. Verbs are employed in the 
mood called the Indicative in order to assert, or (with the aid 
of adverbs) to deny, or to ask questions. Personal inflexions, 
so far as they are retained in modem usage, belong to this 
mood. There is now remaining no single word used in the 
Subjunctive that is not also used in the Indicative. 

2. In asking questions, inversions of the usual order of 
words occur frequently in O.E., and they are still retained 
where the verbs are those called 'auxiliary.' In modem 
literature and in conversation the verb do is extensively used 
in interrogations, in emphatic assertions, in negations, and in 
'elliptical answers. Here and? there a clause having an inter- 

314 syntax: examples. 

rogative form is employed instead of a conditional clause in- 
troduced by if. 

3. Verbs in the Imperative serve mostly to express com- 
mands and requests, but sometimes denote conditions and 
suppositions. The subject, where expressed, follows the im- 
perative verb ; but in M.E. the subject is mostly understood, 
not expressed. The Imperative is here and there useful as 
an energetic substitute for a subjunctive clause expressing a 
condition. For example, in ' Change the order, and you spoil 
the sentence,' and will be omitted, if the first three words are 
altered to ' If you change ; ' but the force of the verb will be 

4. Verbs employed in the mood called the Subjunctive do 
not assert facts, but serve to express conditions or supposi- 
tions and other notions that might be generally called subjec- 
tive, if the term subjunctive were not established. This term 
rightly applies, not to any acts ov facts themselves, but to our 
own notions respecting them. Doubt or fear, reserve or 
modesty, suggests the modes of expression called subjunctive, 
and it is naturally impossible to define closely the limits of 
their application. For while they often imply some doubt 
existing in the mind of the spettker, he may choose to employ 
them in speaking of certain facts respecting which he enter- 
tains privately no doubt. A subdued and guarded tone may 
sometimes be desirable, and consequently subjunctive modes 
of expression will be preferred. Accordingly, the forms and 
the constructions employed in making assertions will be 
avoided, as far as usage may allow, and those called subjunc- 
tive will be substituted. We have no generally accepted rule 
for using these subjunctive constructions and inversions, but it 
is often advisable to retain them, in order to distinguish ex- 
pressions denoting doubt from others denoting certainty. 
Subjunctive modes of expression may be classified as 
follows : — 

(a) The forms of verbs employed in the Subjunctive do 
not belong to this mood alone, but are characterized either by 
some peculiar uses or by a disuse of personal inflexions in the 
places where in the Indicative they would be retained. These 
peculiar uses and vague forms denote generally that assertions 
are avoided. Thus in he writes the verb asserts ; but in the 
clause if he write no assertion is made. The verb here is not 
tied to the subject by means of any personal inflexion, but the 
vague form write is employed to imply doubt or uncertainty. 
Subjunctive uses and forms (of which tables are given in 


§ 23) often follow the conjunctions although, as (with as if and 
as though), except, if, lest, that (= in order that), though, umless, 
and whether, when these words introduce clauses expressing 
uncertainty ; but it is not to bo understood that these words 
must always be followed by subjunctive constructions. The 
word Zes^— peculiarly subjunctive in its force — is now seldom 
employed without might or should following. 

(6) In many passages, where the meaning is subjunctive, 
the conjunctions uamed are not followed by subjunctive con- 
structions. There has been, and still remains, in modern 
literature a general tendency to neglect subjunctive con- 
structions and inversions. 

(c) In many passages where the above-named conjunc- 
tions (excepting lest) are employed, the meanings and the 
forms belong alike to the Indicative ; in other words, there is 
no intention of expressing any doubt. 

(d) Subjunctive meanings are often denoted by inversions 
of the order of words used in making assertions, and some- 
times both subjunctive forms and inversions are employed 
together. Sometimes had, without an inversion, is used with a 
subjunctive meaning, as in 'I had fainted, unless I had be- 
lieved.' — Bible. 

(e) A principal sentence including nnay or might serves 
often to express a doubt, or to make a notion of possibility 
distinct from the assertion of a fact. A subjunctive meaning, 
relating to a present time, may be expressed also by could, 
should, and would — words that serve often to soften or 
subdue the tone of an assertion, a denial, or a refusal. 

(/) Subjunctive forms and constructions are chiefly em- 
ployed in adverbial-clauses implying notions of condition or 
supposition. [See § 47.] But these forms and constructions 
may also serve to denote commands, wishes, fears, and purposes. 
Here, as before, the main characteristic of the Subjunctive 
remains unaltered. It serves to express thoughts and senti' 
ments — especially doubts — and partly avoids forms and con- 
structions employed in asserting facts. But in many places 
forms do not indicate meanings. In Latin the forms of the 
Subjunctive are distinct, and their uses are extensive ; but of 
these nothing more is said here. In English, on the contrary, 
we have subjunctive meanings in numerous passages where 
there are no peculiar forms and no distinct constructions to 
denote them. Here the conjunction alone can indicate doubt — 
for example, in the clauses ' if you have ' and ' if they have,' 
where the verb has the form ^d the place it would have in 

316 syntax: examples. 

the Indicatiye. Some grammarians have invented the mle 
that 'the form peculiar to the Subjunctive Mood is used 
only where uncertainty and futurity are both implied.' 
[MoRELL, E. Oram.'] But the fact is, that in our literature 
there is no rule that is generally observed. One chief inten- 
tion of the Subjunctive is to denote doubt ; but Macatjlay — 
intending to express, as strongly as possible, the doubts occa- 
sioned by another author's ambiguity — writes is after whether^ 
and again after if. [Exam.ples, 4 (6).] 

5. The forms falsely classified, long ago, as belonging to 
the so-called ' Infinitive Mood ' are not verbs. "Words in syntax 
are treated of with respect to their meanings or uses. The 
forms of the ' Infinitive Mood ' are, therefore, noticed here 
only in order to refer to the following sections, where their 
uses are described: — 44, 45, 46 (Complements), 4^7, 48. These 
references will be enough to show that, taken collectively, 
forms called verbal are employed (a) as subjects, (6) as attri- 
butes, (c) as complements, (d) as adverbials, and (e) as objects. 
\_Exam;ples, 5.] 

Examples. — 1. ' It is a notable tale. ... In youth I was as you are now.' 
— AscHAM. ' I cannot tell ; for it i^ not expressed in the booke.' — Latimer. 
' Herestow not ? ' — Chatjceb. [' Hear est thou not ? ' Such blended forms as 
herestow occur often in old literature.] • Knowest thou not ? . . . . Speakest 
thou not unto me ? . . . . Couldest not thou watch one hour ? . . . . Answerest 
thou nothing ? . . . . Know ye not ? .... Do ye not know ? . . . . Are ye 
come out as against a thief? .... Be ye come out?' — Bible. 'Come 
you from Padua? .... Hates any man the thing he would not kill? 
. ... Do you confess the bond?' — Shakespeare. 

2. ' Are you there ? ' ' Did you go ? ' ' Can you tell me ? ' ' May we go ? ' 
' Shall we go ? ' ' Will you come ? ' ' Would you believe it ? ' * Must you go ? ' 
' Do you believe that ? ' * I c?o believe it.' [Emphatic] ' Do they ever agree ? ' 
— Gr. 'When they do agree, their unanimity is wonderful.' — Sheridan. 
•Do you say that?' 'I do [say that].' 'Then he falls, as I do [fall].' — 
Shakespeare. ' Is any among you afflicted ? let him pray. Is any merry ? 
let him sing psalms.' — Bible. [Instead of the questions, clauses intro- 
duced by if might serve ; but the force of the text would be diminished.] , 

3. 'Trusteth ye. My sone, speknot. Kep wel thy tongue.'— Chaucer. 
' Herkyns alle [i.e. all ye].' — Towneley Plays. 'Fal [ye mountains] and 
hyde us.' — Hampole. 'Take heed. . . . Come. . . . Watch. ... Be it 
unto thee even as thou wilt. . . . Let no fruit grow on thee. . . . Let both 
grow together. . . . Gro, and do thou likewise. . . . This know also. . . . 
The cloke .... bring with thee, and [bring] the books.' — Bible. ' Turn we 
[i.e. Let us turn].' — GtOLDsmith. ' First pay your debt ; then you may talk 
of generosity.' ' Let x equal z, and y equal z ; then x equals y.' — Gr. ' Prove 
that, and I will submit.' — Angus. * SpeaJc the word only, and my servant 
shall be healed.' — Bible. ' Change the order of the words, and you spoil 
the sentence.' — G-. [The force will be lessened if, omitting and, the sen- 
tence begin with the clause ' If you change.'] ' Effect this, and you may 
lead him with a straw.' — Gilpin. 

verbs: moods. 


4. (a) * And [ = If] she have 
children, thei leten hire lyve.' — Sm 
John Mandevillb. 

' His berd [beard] was brood, as 
though it were a spade. 

'If thou tak no vengeance.' — 

' I must do it, as it were .... 
perfitelie [perfectly].' — Lady Janb 

' That .... is not quickened, ex- 
cept it die.' — Bible. 

' The village is, as it were, the 
beginning of London.' — De Foe. 

' If thou bring thy gift — If thy 
right hand offend thee — If he neglect 
to hear the church.' — Bible. 

' If every ducat were in six parts.' 
— Shakespeare. 

* If I were your enemy.' — Junius. 

' If pride were his.' — Cbabbe. 

' If he were content.' — Sydney 

' Love not sleep, lest thou come to 
poverty. ' — Bible. 

'Though he slay me, yet will I 
trust in him.' — Bible. 

'Though this earth were to be 
burned.' — Chalmers. 

' "Whether he be a sinner or no, I 
know not. . . . Whether it we/'e I or 
they, so we preach, and so ye be- 
lieved.' — Bible. 

' Who knows whether the best of 
men be known ? ' — Sir T. Browne. 

' This would make them consider, 
whether what they speak be worth 
hearing.' — Sir K. Steele. 

{b) * If yoM speakst talae.' — Shakb- 


' If thou remember est.' — Bible. 

' If any member absents himself.' 
— Addison. 

' If Junius lives.'' — Jttnius. 

' If he Jinds his collection too 
small .' — Johnson. 

' If Jupiter if content — Ye powers 
that rule the tongue, if such there 
are.' — Cowper. 

' If liberty ie suifered to expire.' — 
K. Hall. 

' If this gees on for a hundred 
years.' — Jefj rey. 

* Then, as if this was not enough.' 
— Dickens. 

' If it rains to-morrow, we will 
not go.' — G. 

'If he is caught, he will be 
punished.' — G. 

' If I aw asked, whether there is 
any danger, I answer, " Yes." ' — 

' People .... came to learn 
whether the bad news was true.' — 

' If no man has a right to political 
power .... the whole foundation 
of government is taken away.' — 

* We are really at a loss to deter- 
mine whether Mr. South ey's reason 
for recommending large taxation is, 
that it will make the people rich, or 
that it will make them poor. But 
we are sure that, if his object is to 
make them rich, he takes the wrong 
course. ' — Macaulay. 

(c) ' If there's a Power above us.' — Addison. ' If there's a hereafter.' 
— K. Blair. ' If he [Addison] fails in anything." — H. Blair. ' If his 
political prudence was insufficient.' — Hume [writing of Charles I.] ' If 
it is abuse [As it is], why, one is always sure to hear of it.' — Sheridan. 
' Though he was rich.' — Bible. ' Though a new constitution was not needed ' 
[in 1688].'— Macaulay. 

' Though round its breast the rolling clouds are spread, 
Eternal sunshine settles on its head.' — Goldsmith. 

(d)* Could youth last .... had ^oys no date.'— The Reply [aacrihed 
to SiB W. Baleigh]. ' Had 1 but served my God.' — Shakrspbahb. ' Were 
but this sort of men wise.' — Tillotson. * Were 1 a father.' — Addison. 
^Had he thy reason.'— Pope. ' CouldTime restore the hours. . . . Might one 
wish bring them. . . . JTere he on eai^. . . . ^(jw^cZ I describe a preacher.' — 

318 syntax: examples. 

CowPEB. ' Vf^ere he never so benighted.' — Caklylb. ' Bad Staiford suc- 
ceeded .... had he formed an army .... had we then risen.' — 

(e) ' There are (it may be) so many kinds of voices.' — Bible. ' One 
would expect to be let [admitted] into the hall ; alas ! yon find yourself in 
a brew -house.' — Pope. ' It would be difficult to praise [the book] too highly.' 
— Gr. • There is, I would submit, something to be said on the other 
side.' ' I would respectfully decline that offer.' * I should hardly believe 
that.' ' I should doubt it.' * I should say " Xo." ' — Gr. 

(/) ' I gi"^® thee charge that thou>tee^ this commandment.' — Bible. ' 0, 
could I flow like thee ! ' — Denham. ' 0, that my power to saving were 
confined ! ' — Dbyden. ' I wish I were a queen ! ' — Goldsmith. ' Take 
heed, lest any man deceive you. . . . Take heed, that no man deceive you.' — 
Bible. [The former clause implies a, fear, the latter s, purpose.] 

5. (a) 'To err is human ; to forgive, divine.' [sp] ' To be read by bare 
inscriptions. . . . to be studied hy Q.xit\.c[ViAv\6s . . . . are cold consolations.' 
— Sir T. Browne, [sp. See § 44.] 'What supports me, dost thou ask? 
The conscience to have lost them, overplied in liberty's defence.' — Mixtox. 
[sp] ' Writing [maketh] an exact man.' — Bacon, [s] ' If keejpvig holy 
the seventh day were only a human institution.' — Addison, [sp] 

{b) 'He has aybr^mw^ temper.' [a] * That was a /or^-oifi^eTz. promise.' 
[a] ' There is .... a time to weep, and a time to laugh.' — Bible, [ap] 
' Here lies the deed to be signed.^ [ap] ' The pleasure of being cheated.' 
— Butler, [ap] 'Freedom, driven from every spot.' — R. Hall. [ap. 
See § 45.] 

(c) ' His temper is forgiving.' [c] ' He let the sword fall.' [cm] 
'He let the house fall to ruin.' [cp] ' More to be desired are they than 
gold.' — Bible, [cp] 'Labour and intent study .... I take to be my 
portion' — Milton, [cm] 'I take [him] to have been more happy.' — 
CovTLBT. [cm. See § 46, Complements.'] 

{d) 'Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak.' — Bible, [xp] 
' We are come here to play, and not to quarrel.' [xp] ' As for being 
known much by sight .... I cannot comprehend the honour.' — Cowley. 
[xp] ' Having written twice, I shall not write again.' [xp] ' In keeping 
of them there is great reward.' [xp] ' Whence comest thou ? ' * [I come] 
from going to and fro in the earth, and /row walking up and down in it' 
^-^Bible. "[xp. See § 47.] 

((?) ' He likes reading.' [o] ' Learn to do well.' — Bible, [op] * ' I 
thought [ = intended] to have slainhim.' — Scott, [op; ^o sZay is here a better 
phrase.] ' They love . . . , to be called of men, '^ Rabbi, Rabbi." ' — Bible. 
[op. See § 48.] 


Observations. — 1. Eorms and constructions denoting Tenses 
usually follow one another in the order of time. The Present 
often follows the Perfect, but has several peculiar uses, (a) 
Its forms serve to introduce quotations, to express axioms 
and maxims, and to denote habitual acts or permanent facts. 
(5) In poetical narration sudden transitions from the Past 
(even from the Pluperfect) to the Present occur, (c) The 


Present is sometimes employed instead of tKe First Future. 
When a consequence is expressed, may and will follow such 
verbs as come^ hope, and trust, employed in the Present. 

2. The Past denotes indefinitely an act taking place in 
the past, (a) The act may be regarded as continuous or un- 
finished, and in this case the construction sometimes called 
the ' Past Progressive ' may be substituted for the Simple 
Past. (6) Or the act is understood as ended, though this is 
not formally shown, (c) Or it is to be understood that the 
Past denotes an act often repeated. The Past may follow the 
Pluperfect, and, when an intention is expressed, may be 
followed by the verbal form of which to write is an example ; 
but ought in the Past is followed by phrases like to have 
ivritten. When a consequence is expressed, might and 
would follow forms and constructions like feared and was 
fearing. Should, after a conditional clause, may denote 
certainty, and would (in the same sequence) may express an 

3. The Perfect usually denotes an act partly belonging to 
past time, yet remaining as a result in the present, (a) The 
Perfect Participle following have and its inflexions forms the 
Perfect. (&) But when we refer chiefly to the result of an 
act, the Present of the abstract verb often takes the place of 
have, (c) The Perfect may follow the Past, and may be fol- 
lowed by the Present. Such constructions as have heard, 
have observed, and have teen told are often followed by past 
forms of verbs belonging to clauses. Co-ordinative conjunc- 
tions usually connect verbs in like tenses, or in such as denote 
ordinary sequences ; but this rule does not apply to connec- 
tives having subordinate uses. [/See § 50.] 

4. The Pluperfect implies a double reference to past time, 
and speaks of a past time more remote than another, (a) 
The Perfect Participle following liad forms the Pluperfect; 
but when we refer chiefly to a result, was, with its inflexions, 
sometimes takes the place of had. (6) The Pluperfect may 
be followed by the Past in co-ordinate sentences, (c) Where 
clauses and sentences are connected together, the Pluperfect 
may precede or may follow the Past. Where its meaning is 
subjunctive, the Pluperfect is often followed by sentences in- 
cluding the Past forms could, should, would, and might. Here 
and there the Pluperfect is used where the meaning might be 
denoted by the Past. 

5. The First Future has distinct uses of shall and vjill. The 
toner still retains a trace of i^ original meaning ; the latter 

320 syntax: examples. 

often denotes volition. [_See § 25.] (a) In tlie First Person 
sJiall maj denote futurity, certainty, compulsion, or volition. 
In the otHer persons shall is often used, though it may, in 
some instances, express notions of authority, certainty, or 
compulsion. The force of the verb depends mostly on its 
context, or on the speaker's tone, and can hardly be defined. 
(b) Volition is often expressed by will in the First Person; 
but will in the other persons may denote futurity and cer- 
tainty as well as volition, (c) In questions, both shall and 
will are freely employed, and the latter may imply volition. 

6. (a) The Second Future — less used than the First — 
implies a double reference to the future, and speaks of a future 
time following another. Here may sometimes takes the place 
of shall or of will. 

(b) The Second Future may follow the First, and the 
First may follow the Second. 

Examples. — 1. ' I have seen all ... . and, behold, all is vanity.' — 
Bible. ' I have written plainly to him, and he knows my intentions.' — Gr. 
' He can walk, if he wilts it.' — Locke. ' I will that they be with me.' — 
Bible, [will, the independent or complete verb, is rarely used.] * We 
may play now.' — G. [The tense of an irregular verb is, in many instances, 
shown only by the context.] ' Ye ought to say. If the Lord will, we shall live. 
. . , We ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold. ... I mtist 
work the works of him that sent me, while it is day.' — Bible. 'He dare 
not say that.' [Correct.] ' He dares me to do it.' [Correct.] ' What 
need a man care for a stock ? * — Shakespeare. ' What needs my Shake- 
speare ? ' — Milton. 

(a) ' Things which are equal to the same are equal to one another.' 
' A stitch in time saves nine.' ' Homer gives an account of the battle.' 'Milton 
describes the fall of the rebellious angels.' * ' Wordsworth said, the child 
was father to the man.' [sai/s ; is] 'He who fair and softly ^oes steadily 
forward .... will sooner be at his journey's end than he that runs after 
every one he meets.' — Locke. ' One gener-dtion passeth away, and another 
generation cometh ; but the earth abideth for ever.' — Bible. 

(b) 'His steede was al dappul gray; It goth [goes] ful softely.' — 
Chaucer. ' When the morning was come, the giant yoes to them again, and 
takes them into the castle-yard.' — Buntan. 

' The wanderer's eye could barely view 
The summer heaven's delicious blue .... 
And now, to issue from the glen. 
No pathway meets the wanderer's ken [sight].' — Scott. 

(c) 'Duncan comes to-night.' — Shakespeare. *I must work .... 
while it is day : the night cometh. . . . Watch therefore : for ye know not what 
houryour Lord (7oj!A come. . . . This mortal w^^sif put on immortality.' — Bible. 
'We trust you 7nay be successful.' 'We obey the laws that we ?way be 
free.'— G. 

2. ' He durst not do it' ' He dared me to do it.' * The vessel lay there 
at anchor.' ' He laid his books on the table.' ' He rose from his seat.' 


• He raised his head.' ' He sat on the bank.' ' He took the plants and set 
them in his garden.' ' Thou wa»t blending with my thought.' — Colebidge. 
' Say, wast thou conscious ? ' — Cowpeb. * So wert thou born.' — Dbtden. 
*YovL ought [= owed] him a thousand pounds.' — Shakbspeabe. 'He left 
Judaea .... and he must needs go through Samaria. ... I wist [ = knew] 
not, brethren, that he was the high priest.'— Bible. ' I had written [or I 
wrote] before yours came to hand.' ' Yesterday I intended to write.' ' Thou 
oughtest, therefore, to have put money to the exchanges. . . . These things 
ought ye to have done' — Bible. ' I was fearing I might be too late.' 

* If we extracted the square root of this number, we would have twenty- 
four.' \shovld^ 

(a) ' They were eating and [were] drinking. . . . While the bridegroom 
tarried, they all slumbered [= were slumbering].' — Bible. 'While Nelson 
was living, to watch the combined squadrons of the enemy, we felt ourselves 
as secure as now when they were no longer in existence.' — Sotjthey. [now 
sometimes relates to the latter of two occasions, both past] 

(b) ' Caesar crossed the Rubicon.' ' We swam safely across the river.' 
'His speedy victory was immediately reported in the words "I came, I saw, 
I conquered." ' — G. 

(c) ' At night he would return to the camp. . . . That day he would 
stay at home. It was only at night that we would gather together before 
the fire.' — W. Ibving. [would here denotes habitual actions.] 

' They walk'd and ate, good folks : What then ? 
Why, then they waWd and ate again.' — Pbior. 

3. 'It [Bacon's philosophy] has lengthened life .... has mitigated 
pain .... has lightened up the night.' — Macaulay. [It is implied that 
the results still remain.] 

(a) ' Sir Roger has beautified the inside of his church. He has likewise 
given a handsome pulpit-cloth.' — Addison. 

(b) ' The songs and the fables that are come from father to son.' — Addi- 
son. ' He is come.' ' Your best friend is gone.' 

.(c) ' Since last week, when I wrote to him, I have seen him.' ' I have 
seen all . . . . and, behold, allw vanity.' — Bible. ''Re has often told me that, 
at his coming to his estate, he found his parishioners very irregular.' — 
Addison. ' It has been observed that Pope taught himself writing by copy- 
ing printed books.' — Is. Disbaeli. ' We are informed of the facts to which 
your letter directed our attention.' — G-. 

4. (a) ' Sir Roger had been a good fellow in his youth.' — Ascham. 
' By this time [past] the equipage of the strolling company was arrived.' — 

(b) ' A headstone had been prepared, and a person came forward to plant 
it.' — Wilson. ' He had studied the question and, therefore, his answer 
was ready.' — G. 

(c) ' He observed 1 had promised another paper upon the tombs.' — Ad- 
dison. 'He assured me that this invention had occupied all his thoughts 
from his youth.' — Swift. ' I had scRTce finished my fable when the lawyer 
came' — Goldsmpth. 'When he had concluded, Halifax requested the 
Prince and Princess to accept the crown.' — Macaulay. 'If the chariot and 
the horses of fire had been vouchsafed for Nelson's translation, he could 
scarcely have departed in a brighter blaze of glory.' — Sotjthey, ' If an 
emnire equally extensive with that of Charlemagne had been formed , . . 


322 syntax: ^examples. 

the seeds of commerce and liberty .... would have perished.' — Hallam. 
' We had written to you yesterday before the receipt of your note.' [wrote.'] - 

5. {a) ' I shall be seventeen years old to-morrow. Some day we shall 
know all about it. We shall have to wait here two hours. I have thought 
of it, and I shall go. I shall refuse to pay that sum.' — Gr. ' There you 
shall find me, ready to conduct you to Olney, and I will tell you what you 
shall find at your first entrance. Yqu shall see, on the right hand, a box 
of my making. . . . We will be as happy as the days are long.' — Cowper. 
* Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.' — Bible. ' I 
say, you shall not go.' — Gr. 

(6) ' We will go with you. You will most probably be invited. You 
say you cannot come ; the fact is, you will not.' — G. ' At church he will 
sit where he may be best seen.' — Bishop Hall. 

(c) 'Shall we go? Shall you go? Shall we have rain ? Will you come? 
Will he come with you ? ' — Gr. 

6. («) 'We shall have done OUT ■work to-morrow when you coTae. Next 
Midsummer we shall have lived here five years.' — Gr. ' After a lapse of two 
hundred and fifty years, we are afraid to think of the space they may have 
shrunk into.' — Jeffrey. 

(b) ' My face will not wrinkle, nor [will] my hair be gray ; for this 
corruptible shall have put on incorruption.' — Baxteb. ' When this mortal 
shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying 
that is written.' — Bible. 


Ohservations. — 1. Among tlie various words and phrases 
following verbs, and making their predicates more distinct, 
some are called complements, and others adverbials. In the 
sentence ' He came early ' the predicate contained in came is 
distinct, and early is an adverbial that more closely defines the 
predicate. But in the sentence * His beard became white ' the last 
word is a complement. Is there a reason for the employment 
of these two names ? The history of the word cume may give 
the answer required. The verb's primitive force is still retained 
in come, but is mostly left vague in our uses of the compound 
he-come. The former, placed with a subject, makes a clear 
assertion ; the latter mostly requires an adjunct, and this ad- 
junct that must be employed is a complement. In E.I. the 
prefix be makes, in some places, no alteration. * He becom 
to anre byrig ' means ' He came to a town.' In E.II. become 
(or bicome) in several places means gone, but in others has 
only the vague force of the compound in * His beard became 
white.' Shakespeare in several places employs becomes as a 
verb equivalent to adorns. In these instances the verb is 
clearly predicative, and is followed by an object. But in 
modem literature becomes — sometimes employed with the 
poet's meaning, or as equivalent to suits — has in many places 

verbs: complements. 323 

a vague meaning, denoting nothing more than a transition 
from one state to another. The verb itself says only what 
may be said of anything, and consequently an adjunct is re- 
quired. Adjuncts thus required, and called complements, are 
here classified as consisting respectively of words, phrases, 
and clauses. The verbs mostly requiring complements have 
been classified. [See § 43.] 

2. The abstract verb be requires adjuncts, and its limited 
forms, followed by adjuncts called perfect participles, form 
the two tenses of the Passive voice : — ' I am ruled * and ' I 
vms ruled.* In many places have retains a primitive force; 
in others it requires adjuncts, and with their aid makes the 
two tenses ' I have ruled ' and ' I had ruled.* These construc- 
tions — like others of the conjugation called compound — are 
sentences made of vague verbs and adjuncts, and are called 
' tenses ' because they serve as translations of Latin forms, 
such as regor (I am ruled), re^e&ar (I was ruled), rexi (I have 
ruled), and rexeram (I had ruled). In Latin the predicate of 
the last word is rex, and the limited verb is eram. The verb 
had and the adjunct ruled should, strictly speaking, be de- 
scribed as a verb and a predicate ; but for the sake of brevity 
both are often taken together and called a * predicate.' In 
logic the predicate is that which is said, and the verb, or 
copala, is the word that asserts. In questions do is a vague 
verb requiring adjuncts, but in familiar talk do in force often 
represents the old verb dugan (= avail). The verbal form 
going is an adjunct in sentences sometimes classified with the 
tenses called 'intentional.' \_8ee § 24.] 

3. The defective verbs of which shall and can are ex- 
amples are called ' auxiliaries,' because they are followed by 
complementary adjuncts, and serve with these to form various 
constructions, mostly classified with the tenses called com- 
pound. The history of shall — in E.I. sceal, in E.II. seal and 
schal — shows the process by which the meanings of other verbs 
have been diminished in the course of time. It is probable 
that several old Teutonic languages had a stem not unlike 
skil, denoting and naming a destructive act, and a verb like 
skila, of which the Past, skal — in E.I. sceal — was in force 
equivalent to 'I have killed' (a man). For the guilt thus 
confessed the ordinary penalty was a fine, which the criminal 
was hound to pay. Hence ic sceal served to confess a debt, 
and afterwards the altered word schal (pronounced as shall) 
might express, though with a decaying force, a sense of both 
obligation and futurity. This* complex meaning has been 

T 2 

324 syntax: examples. 

gradually made weaker and weaker, but has not yet altogether 
passed away. The verb still sounds here and there harshly, 
when employed in the second person, and there is sometimes 
a notion of obligation associated with the form should, as in 
* You should pay your debts ' (i.e. you ought to pay). 

4. The complements of intransitive verbs are mostly placed 
next to their verbs. Verbs denoting weight and measure are 
followed by definitive nouns and numeral adjectives, and 
adverbs may, of course, be employed also to modify the force 
of the verb and its adjuncts. 

5. The complements immediately following give, and some 
verbs of similar meaning, might be classified with ordinary 
adverbials, but are very closely connected with certain verbs. 
These verbs are often followed by him and them, which, in their 
forms and their uses, often represent dative cases in E.I., 
but in M.E. may serve also as objects. The forms me, us, 
thee, and you (eow) serve in M.E. — as in E.I. — either as dative 
cases (forms of complements) or as objects. In reading aloud 
pronouns having the uses of dative cases should mostly be 
unemphatic. [See § 47.] 

6. The complements of make, and other transitive verbs of 
similar meaning, mostly follow objects, and are sometimes 
called * factitive objects;' sometimes 'indirect objects.' It 
will be noticed, in another place, that German grammarians 
have given to the word ' object ' a meaning so wide that it 
cannot be defined. [See § 48.] 

7. The verbal forms called perfect participles, and em- 
ployed in constructions described as belonging to the Passive 
voice, are often followed by adjuncts that may be clas- 
sified either as complements rather closely connected, or as 
adverbials that, here and there, might be omitted without any 
considerable loss of meaning. 'No hard line of demarcation 
can here be fairly drawn ; but it will be remembered that, 
speaking rather strictly, complements are adjuncts that must 
be employed, and adverbials are adjuncts that may be em^ 
ployed, but may often be omitted without a destruction or a 
serious alteration of the meaning intended. [See § 47.] 

1. « He to J>am weardmannum becom [He came to those watchmen].' — 
JElfbic. ' pey ne myjt neuer here [hear] whydyrward he was bpcome 
[gone]. Now is Pers hy come bry eke [poor ; c].' — E. Mannyng. ' Sythen 
[Afterwards] by -com man's lyf les [c].' — Hampoo!. 'It well becomes 
[= adorns] the ground.' — Shakespeake. ' When it is grown it becometh a 
tree [c].' — Bible. ' They became guides [c] to mankind,' — ^Pope. 

2. 'Her is fyr micel [much fire]. Hwser is j^aet tiber [sacrifice] ? ' — 
C-KDMON. [The complements here are the adverbs her and hwaer.] 'I 


was come' — Ltbgate. ' AH things thataro [ «» exist] hare some operation.' 
— Hooker. [Here 'are' requires no c] 'It is very cold.' — Shakespeare. 
' Hajp'py is the man. . . . "3.0^ good diudiho-w pleasant it is.' — Bible. ' Though 
all is easy, nothing isfeeble.'—W. Irving. ' Are yon going? Are you going 
to write r — G. ' I have dwelled.' — Mandeville. ' I haif been here this 
■whyle.' — Henbyson. 'Kichard might asaued [have saved; c] hymself.' — 
Old Chronicle. ' He has come to London. They are come. They are gone.' 
— G. 'He did bede me. One bade me. I did me hie. Then I hied me.' 
— Ltdgate. ' Thus did both these nobles die'— Chevy Chase. ' They did 
say their prayers. I did send to you.' — Shakespeare. ' All living creatures 
he doth feed.' — Milton. ' I hope we shall witness all this, if the French 
do come.' — S. Smith. 

3. ' pil scealt Isaac me onsecgan {devote']. He sceolde his drihtne 
>aiician [He was bound to thank his Lord].' — Cjedmon. ' This dette ssel 
[shall = owes] ech to othren.' — Dan Michel. ' By that feith Ischal [owe] 
to you. If thou be right riche, thanne schalt th.ou fynde .... frendes.' 
— Chaucer. ' I schal rise up and go to my fadir.' — Wtcliffb. * Thou 
shalt dwell with me.' — Robin Hood. * There shal no pore neighbour of 
mine bere no losse.' — Sir T. More. 'Ich wille telle 30U.' — William of 
Shpreham. 'It wolde never bere fruyt.' — Mandeville. 'Oplondysch 
[Rustic] men wol lykne ham-sylf to gentil men.' — John of Trevisa. 
' What will you buy 1 ' — Lydgate. ' I will be thy friend' — Robin Hood. 

* • If we take the square root, we will [ = shall] have twenty -four.' — G. ' This 
will never do.' — Jeffrey. [Here ' do ' has a complete meaning = ' do well,' 
or ' be good for ' something.] 

4. ' Now the time seems come.' — Milton. * The king grew vain.' — 
Dryden. ' They all grew worse.' — Prior. ' He returned a friend who 
came a foe.' — Pope. ' The mind of a young creature cannot remain empty.' 
— Berkeley. 'Learning wiser grows.' — Cowper. ' The foam lay white on 
the turf.' — Byron. ' This block of marble weighs a ton. The stem measured 
nioicfeet round.' — G. 

6. ' Se bisceop him Cristes lare tsehte [The bishop taught him Christ's 
lore], pa circlican j^eawas he bser getaehte ]?am preostum [He there 
taught the priests ecclesiastical rites].' — ^lfric. 'Give sorrow words. 

* Knock me [ =for me] at this gate.' — Shakespeare. ' Give me understand- 
ing. . . . Teach me tliy statutes. . . . Saddle me [ =for me] the ass. . . . 
Woe worth [ = be to] the day ! ' — Bible. ' Teach m^ to live.* — Bishop 
Ken. ' What you write can never yield us delight.' — Dryden. 

6. ' No man mi3te daunte or make tame hym.' — Wycliffb. ' Nothing 
can we call our own. . . . They hailed him father of a line of kings.' — Shake- 
speare. ' Did I request thee .... to mould me wia».?'— Milton. 'To 
make them kneel he gave every one of them a hassock. ... It makes nature 
administer to his pleasure.' — Addison, * All men agree to call vinegar 
sour, honey sweet, aloes bitter.' — Burke. * Military government rendered 
the lives of men insecure.' — Hume. ' We allow him vanquished.' —Sir W. 
Scott. ' Do not think me ungrateful. He found all his wants supplied.' — 
Mason, E. Gram. ' Friendship makes the world a home. They made us 
welcome.' — G. 

7. * Ye wolde eschewe to be cleped [called] an averous [avaricious] 
man.' — Chauceb. • You would be taught your duty.' — Shakespeare. ' He 
was forbidden access.' — Hume. * Each must be allowed its share of time.' 
— Johnson. 'Churchill had been made a baron.' — Macaulay. 'Alex- 
amfer was called the Great.' — MAS0N,f£J. Gram. 'We were taught men- 
suration.' — G. 

326 syntax: examples. 


Ohservations. — 1. Some intransitive verbs — sucli as 'con- 
sist ' and ' remain ' — and several transitive verbs, in their 
meanings like ' make' and 'take,' are often so employed as 
to require the aid of phrases serving as complements. 

2. Several perfect participles, and some other words often 
nsed as complements, are so far vagne in their meanings that 
they must be followed by other adjuncts to make complete 
predicates. In a rather minute style of analysis, one adjunct 
might here be treated as the complement of another ; but two 
or three must in many instances be taken together, in order to 
make the predicate complete. Ex. : ' He thinks himself ohliged 
[1] to he [2] sad [3].' The second adjunct partly defines 
the first, and the third defines the second. The three, taken 
together, make a phrase that defines the use of the verb 

3. Several transitive verbs, in their meanings like ' ad- 
vise,' ' compel,' and ' reduce,' are followed by phrases that 
might perhaps be well classified with ordinary adverbials ; but 
these phrases are, in many instances, closely connected with 
the verbs to which they belong. It is of course understood 
that there can be no great error in treating as adverbials the 
phrases noticed in the examples appended. The facts of prac- 
tical syntax make difierences and defects of classification 
inevitable. There are constructions in which boundary lines 
drawn by theory appear but faintly, or vanish. [^S^ee § 43.] 

1. 'He will make it i'o ben cryed [published].' — Mandeville. 'Take 
him for all in all' — Shakespeare. ' He maketh me to lie down in green 
pastures. . . . He turneth the dry ground into water-springs, and there he 
maketh the hungry to dwell. He causeth them to wander. Yet setteth 
he the poor on high. * What went ye out /or to seel ' — Bible. ' I took it for 
a vision.' — Milton. ' Sometimes wit lieth in a pat alhision.' — Barrow. 
' The comely order of the house is turned all into coiifusion.' — Howe. ' My 
chief aflfliction consisted in my being singled out .... as a proper object 
on whom he might let loose his cruelty.' — Cowpeb. 'The destruction of 
the fleet hardly appeared to have added to our security.' — Southey. 
' We made them play the game out. They held his valour in high esteem. 
I regarded him as a friend. How could you take a flatterer /or a friend V 

2. ' Harold seyde .... hyt [his oath] was compelled to be yswore.* — 
John of Tretisa. 'Ambition should be made of sterner stuff ' — Shake- 
speare. ' He thinks himself obliged to be sad.' — Addison. ' Nobody will 
be argued into slavery.' — Burke. ' Man is made to mourn! — Burns. ' He 
cannot be said to have fallen prematurely.' — Southey. ' He was at once 
set to rtde the state.' — Macaulay. ' His enemies were soon reduced to 
despair.' — Gr. 


3. ' Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome.' — Bible. 
' He would have all men to bend to his plans.' — Angus. ' They doomed 
him to die. The Cape then belonged to Holland' — Q-. 


Clanses serve respectively as subjects, attributes, adver- 
bials, and objects. But in certain instances clauses very 
closely connected with the abstract verb, or with vaguely 
predicative verbs and participles, have been classed with com- 
plements. A few examples are appended. One apparent 
example is here omitted. It should be regarded as a name. 
[Exod. iii. 14.] 

' I am 05 7 am.' — "Wtatt. ' All things are as is their use' — Turbee- 
viLE. ' How [much is] a score of ewes [worth] now ? [That is] thereafter 
as they be' * Accommodated — That is when a man is, as they say, accom- 
modated.' — Shakespeare. ' I am persuaded that none of these things are 
hidden' — Bible. ' His solicitor had informed him that his jplea could be of 
no use' — H. Walpolb. 'You are persuaded that Lord Amherst will de- 
fend Kew Bridge.' — S. Smith. ' Things are not what they seem.' — Long- 
FEixow. ' The purse was where I left it.' — Morell, E. Gram. ' I convinced 
him that he was mistaken. The opinion of the judge was that the prisoner 
was guilty.' — Mason, E. Gram. * I was informed the house was sold.' — 
Adams, E. Gram. 


The term Adverbial — employed in its widest sense — 
is here applied not only to words called adverbs, but also 
to all phrases and clauses serving to define or to modify 
the meanings of verbs and attributive words. The Attri- 
bute enlarges or modifies the meanings of substantive 
words ; the Adverbial, those of predicative and attributive 

To show more clearly the nature of adverbials, it may for 
a moment be supposed that they are not employed. Without 
their aid an assertion may still be made complete. ' Clear 
daylight appeared.' Again, an assertion is made complete 
when the abstract verb and a complement take the place of 
the intransitive verb appeared. * Clear daylight was appear- 
ing.* To express completely a transitive act, an object must 
follow the verb. ' The wind dispersed the clouds.' In each 
of these examples one act alone is asserted. Two facts may 
of course be asserted in two sentences. ' Clear daylight 
appeared. The appearance of^ay light was sudden.* A single 

328 syntax: examples. 

word may well take the place of the latter sentence. ' Clear 
daylight appeared sudderily.' 

Again, two acts — one transitive — are asserted in the fol- 
lowing two sentences : — ' The wind dispersed the clouds. Clear 
daylight appeared.' These assertions might well be connected 
by and, but each would still remain independent. One 
would not be made subordinate to the other. But the two 
acts asserted are viewed as intimately connected with each 
other. Forms of expression should, as far as possible, repre- 
sent truly our notions and correspond with our observations 
of facts. This law is obeyed when an adverbial-phrase takes 
the place of the former sentence. ' The wind dispersing the 
clouds J clear daylight suddenly appeared.' Or instead of a 
phrase a clause may be employed. ' As the wind dispersed the 
clouds, clear daylight appeared.' The three adjuncts thus 
employed are formally various ; one is a word, another is a 
phrase, and the last is a clause. But all are alike in their 
common use. They serve to define and modify an assertion 
made by a predicative verb, and are therefore called adverbials. 

As regards their more important uses, adverbials are 
divided into three classes. 

(a) The first includes those defining assertions of acts or 
transitions, viewed with respect to place and time, quantity 
and quality, sequence, manner, means, degree, and limitation. 

' At a late hour they arrived.' Their arrival is asserted with a reference 
to time ; but the two notions of arrival and lateness are not always or 
inevitably related to each other. 

(6) The second class includes adverbials expressing relative 
notions of comparison, proportion, condition, and causality. 

* Two-thirds must be less than the whole! The adverbial is one of com- 
parison, and the notion asserted is inevitably relative. 

(o) The third class includes adverbials of affirmation and 

There remain still unnoticed many adverbials that, in an extensive 
treatise, might be classified, but here may be collectively called various. 
Their different uses are best shown in the sentences to which they respect- 
ively belong, and here can be indicated only by means of nouns having 
cognate meanings. We have, for example, adverbials denoting union ('to- 
gether ') ; division (' piecemeal ') ; exclusion (' waiving that ') ; substitution 
(' instead of that ') ; asking (' how,' ' where,' ' when,' ' why,') ; answering (' to 
that') ; guessing (' say, twenty ') ; haste {'yare,' 'briskly ') ; delay (' at leisure') ; 
will (' leuere' ' readily ') ; choice (' as you like ') ; opposition (' on the con- 
trary'); defiance ('for all that'); aid ('for your sake ') ; politeness (' by 
your leave'); modesty ('for my own part'); moderation ('for the most 
part') ; finality (' after all ') ; eternity (' evermore '). Hardly any class ia 


more numerous than that of the adverbials denoting capacity and introduced 
\>y as. These are distinct from others (' as to,' ' as regards,' etc.), also in- 
troduced by as, and serving as phrases denoting references, retrospective or 
prospective (' as touching,' ' as concerning,' ' ane7it that'). 

The adverbials most frequently occurring in a writer's style serve partly 
to indicate his culture, and distinct sections of literature have severally 
their own classes of adverbs. As there are topics and writings fairly called 
trivial, so there are cognate trivial adverbials. "We have, for example, ad- 
verbials of childish imitation (' rub-a-dub,' ' tweedle-dee ') ; of hesitation 
(' willy-nilly ' = will ye, nill ye) ; of confusion (' pell-mell,' 'helter-skelter') ; 
of contempt ('I care not a straw'). 

No meanings can be really stronger than those of the adverbs employed 
in yes and no. But adverbials of asseveration are redundant in some sections 
of literature. The obsolete phrase b?/ my halidom is a comparatively inof- 
fensive example of numerous old expressions. Of these many, by familiar 
misuse, lost long ago their first meanings, and disguising (as well as they 
might) their original forms, passed over into the class of words and elliptical 
phrases called interjections. 

Adverbs should help to define or modify predicates ; but here and 
there a writer inserts a word or phrase to show that his meaning is inten- 
tionally left vague, or is expressed with much caution, such as is implied in 
saying • as it were,' or ' so to speak.' "With a similar intention like 
(without a complement) is used in some dialects ; for example, in answering 
a query : — ' How far may it be to the " Swan " ? ' ' "Why, its gainly four mile 

Among the examples already given, some might misrepresent adverbials 
as expletive or unimportant parts of sentences. On the contrary, right uses 
of these adjuncts have great importance. In grammar it is required only 
that the predicate shall be complete, not that it shall be true. But in his- 
torical and didactic literature it is also required that, as far as possible, 
the predicate shall be made true; and this must often be done by means of 
such expressions of limitation, qualification, and condition as are classified 
with adverbials. Habitual right uses of these adjuncts are sure indications 
of culture. ' It is an advantage of no mean importance to be able to grasp 
in one grammatical expression a general truth, with the necessary limita- 
tions, qualifications, and conditions which its practical application requires, 
and the habitual omission of which characterises the shallow thinker.' — 
Marsh, Lectures on tJie English Language. 


Observations. — 1. As regards their forms, adverbials, ex- 
cepting a few, are cognate with other parts of speech. In 
the words yes (a contracted sentence) and no (a contracted 
phrase) the adverbial elements are ye (= ge, E.I.) and ne 
(reduced to n). The words yes and no, it is said, should not 
be called adverbs. They must, then, be treated as elliptical 
expressions including adverbs. [See §§12, 20, 37.] 

(a) In prose numerous adverbs are words having distinct 
^ms ending in ly. There are a few adjectives ending in 

330 . syntax: examples. 

ly, to which the adverbial suffix should not be added. [See 

§ 12-] 

(b) In prose some adverbial uses of adjective forms are 
established, and others not commonly accepted as correct are 
found in the literature of the last three centuries. It is not 
everywhere easy to draw a line of distinction between adjuncts 
called Adverbials and others called Complements. 

(c) More frequently adverbials employed in verse are 
made formally like adjectives. 

2. (a) As regards their uses, words called adverbs belong 
mostly to the first of the three classes of adverbials. 

(6) But there are a few ^rms (sometimes denoting infer- 
ence) that refer to notions of causality more frequently and 
more clearly expressed in clauses. 

(c) For our ordinary uses of negative forms Modern 
English has a rule that was not known in old times. Two 
negatives, when relating to one verb, are not allowed. They 
are, however, often so employed when one has the form of a 
prefix, and they are of course rightly used when a twofold 
denial or prohibition is implied. In verse they serve 
sometimes (but rarely) instead of the ordinary form of 

(d) It is in many places clear that some words called 
adverbs serve to modify the meanings of nouns. Many 
adverbs have uses so numerous that here they must be collec- 
tively called various. 

(e) Here and there a form usually employed as an adverb 
{then, for example) serves as an adjective, and here and there 
an adverb (now, for example) serves as a noun. There are 
examples of adverbs employed as verbs. 

3. As regards their places, adverbials — especially the 
words called adverbs — are versatile, and an adverb may some- 
times be moved without an alteration of the meaning intended. 
The chief rule of position is this — where it is not used to 
modify the general tone of a whole sentence, the adverb 
should be placed near the word or the phrase intended to be 

(a) Placed at the beginning, an adverb may give defini- 
tion or emphasis, or a modified tone, to the whole of a sentence. 
Thus the adverb even, placed as an initial word, may show 
that an assertion is remarkable chiefly with respect to the sub- 
ject, while the same word even, placed in another position, 
may give force to the verb itself. Examples of such adverbs as 
even, only, and accordingly, rightly employed in several places, 


will be found mora useful than our rules for placing adverbs. 
Many examples are given in the sequel. 

(b) The adverb may precede an adjective, a verb, a com- 
plement, an adverb, an adverbial-phrase, or an object ; but 
the adverb often follows the object. It is here implied that 
the adverb may be placed between an auxiliary verb and 
its complementary infinitive or participle. The adverb im- 
mediately preceding a predicative verb serves often to give 
emphasis to an assertion. 

(c) The adverb may follow an intransitive verb, or one 
of the verbal forms falsely classified as belonging to a so- 
called Infinitive Mood. In numerous instances the adverb 
follows the object of a transitive verb. 

Examples. — 1. (a) ' pas word sind sceortlice gesaede [These words are 
shortly said].' — King Alfred. ' Hyt ys no3t clerlych [clearly'] yknowe.' — 
John of Tbevisa. ' This false knyght was slayn .... hastily.' — Cha-ucer. 
• Prey hym that he wyll trewly [ = fairly] belassch hym.' — Paston Letters. 
' Let us hartely thank him.' — Sib T. More. ' He answered them very 
wisely.' — Ascham. ' Thus arose political societies among men naturally 
equal.' — Hooker. ' Some books are to be read ordy in parts.' — Bacon. 
' Merrily, merrily shall I live now.' — Shakespeare. 

(h) 'A folk ferr \_ = faroff] &nd first [ = formerly] vncuth.' — Cursor 
Mundi. [Each of these forms serves as a and as x.] ' Hire her is fayr ynoh 
[Her hair is fair enough].' — Old Song. [Each of these forms serves as a and 
as X.] ' 'Eoldfast the form of sound words.' — Bible, [fast serves as a and 
as X.] * Scarce can they tread the glowing ground. . . . The snow covers the 
hills. How wide and deep it lies ! ' — Shaftesbury. [Scarce serves often 
as a and as x = scarcely ; wide serves as a and as x ; deep as a and as x.] 
' To buy cheap and sell dear is their rule.' [cheap has at \arious times 
served as s, as a, and as x ; dear as s, as a, and as x.] ' This poor child 
looks very coW.' ' She answered me very coldly.' — G. [Here the distinct 
form has a distinct use. [See § 12.] 

(o) ' Sleep lay flat on the ground.' — Sackville. * She speaks small, 
like a woman. . . . All [= Quite] foredone [= tired out]. . . . How sweet 
the moonlight sleeps upon this bank ! ' — Shakespeare. ' Fast [ = Close] by 
the tree of life.'— Milton. 'The hearse that bore thee slow away.' — 
CowpEH. ' The meteor flag of England Shall yet terrific burn.' — Campbbix. 
[In poetry adjective forms are in many places more expressive than adverbs 
ending in ly.] 

2. (a) ' Wat [ = Partly] vor honger, wat [ = partly] vor wo, men deyde.' 
— Robert of Gloucester. * pys man ere ys somdel [somewhat = partly] 
ychaunged.' — John of Tbevisa. ' If thou be right riche.' — Chaucer. ' I 
had lever [rather] he were fayr beryed.' — Paston Letters. ' Many poesies 
are yejf extant.' — W.Harrison. ' Prosperity doth best discover vice. . . . 
First [correct], metals are more durable ; secondly, they are more solid.' — 
Bacon. ^Hitherto shalt thou come, but no further.' — Bible. '1 thence in- 
voke thy aid.' — Milton. • It breaks through the clouds and then shines.' — 
Stillingflebt. 'I have seldom answered.' — Dbtden. *I have almost 
forgot that.'— Stbpxk. * Affairs take a still worse turn.' — Humb. ' Alighting, 
' he advanced.' — Smollett. • Whet^ill she turn, and whither? . ... On 


went she, and dice north her journey took.' — Wordsworth. 'While Nelson 
was living to watch the combined squadrons of the enemy, we felt ourselves 
as secure as now, when they were no longer in existence.' — Southey, 
[now relates sometimes to the latter of two occasions, both past.] 

(b) ' We, then, that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak. 
. . . Therefore thou art inexcusable. . . . Wherefore ye must needs be sub- 
ject.' — Bible. [These adverbs relate to preceding arguments.] ' Hence 
it is inferred. . . . Whence it follows.' — G-. * i^row Aewce it must follow.' 
— Butler. [This phrase = hence, and is used by good authors ; but the 
preposition is useless.] 

(<?) * 8othely\Truly\?i\\.Q thingesrenovelen [renew themselves]. . . . Ne\ 
ne say not [Nor do I deny] that thou w maist wel schrive the [that thou mayst 
well shrive thee].' — The Persones Tale. 'Nor did they not perceive.' — 
Milton. [Unusual.] ' I deny not but that it is of greatest concernment.' 
— Milton. [The meaning intended remains when but is omitted.] 
' Such a course of life cannot but [= must] end in misery.' 'It is not im- 
possible.' — Gr. 

{d) ' Well, and .... what might the gentleman say ? — Why, he roundly 
asserts .... that you have not one idea of your own .... nay [=yea, 
and more'], that you are so unlucky as not to have the skill even to steal with 
taste. . . . Now, another person would be vexed at this.' — Sheridan. 
[It is in some places hard to draw the line that makes separate adverbs and 

{e) ' The then Bishop of London, Dr. Laud, attended on his Majesty.' — 
Clarendon. ' Now Griant Despair had a wife. . . . Well, on Saturday, 
about midnight, they began to pray.' — Btjntan. [The author employs now 
and well as words connecting principal sentences.] ' We may collect the 
excellency of the understanding then [existing] by the glorious remainders 
of it now [existing].' — South. ' His forehead [was] wrinkled .... by 
thinking of his whens and hows.^ — Wordsworth, Peter Bell. 

3. (a) ' Sothely I seie to thee.' — Wtcliffe. 'Immediately the cock 
crew. . . . Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise. . . . 
Only Luke is with me.' — Bible. ' Yet we know that all offences are to be 
forgiven.' — Drtden. ' Even we ourselves choose rather.' — Shaftes- 
bury. ' Sure it is not armour, is it ? ' — Fielding. ' Sincerely, then, do 
you like the piece? — Wonderfully! .... Really, I can't agree with my 
friend Sneer. . . . Yes, yes, you do.' — Sheridan. ' Certainly no man ever 
bestowed such a gift.'— Jeffrey. ' Accordingly he sailed for Canada.' — 
Southey. ' Unfortunately he thinks too highly of himself.' — Angus. 
' Whence comest thou ? Whither shall I flee ? ' — Bible. * Where is he going ? ' 
' Where do you come from ? ' — Gr. 

(b) ' Work never so mammonish is in communication with nature.' — 
Carlyle. [x, a. These and the following signs show the order in which 
adverbs are placed.] ' Taxation hardly presses on the rich, but presses 
hardly on the poor.' [x, v; v, x. The adverb is used here with the two 
meanings of slightly and severely.] ' I seriously admire the piece.' — Sheri- 
dan, [x, v] ' She slowly and naturally turned away her head.' — Scott. 
[x, v] ' We might say that they did not persecute, but they only punished.' 
— Macaulay. [x, v] ' Other joys are but toys.* — Walton, [x, c] ' Gro- 
vernors are therefore appointed.' — Bolingbroke, [x, c] ' I must needs 
have tired you.' — Pope, [x, c] 'Men of letters have accordingly ceased 
to court individuals. We will not positively afl&rm that.' — Macaulay. 
[x, c. The position thus denoted is otherwise named. * The adverb ' (it 


is said) * is often well placed between the auxiliary [the vague verb] and 
the verb ' [i.e. a verbal /orw used as a complement]. 'You are not only 
older, bat also stronger than he.' [x, c] ' The effects may be traced even 
at the present day.'— Macaulay. [x, xp] 'I should have done ^ms^ as 
he did.' — Fiklding. [x, xc] ' He died solely because he could not help 
it. . . . That prince had governed without any Parliament, and even when 
Parliament was sitting, had supported Buckingham.' — Macaulay. [x, xc] 

• Yet those have done full well.' — Ascham. [c, x] • Is he frightened 
now?* — Fielding, [c, x] 'Brown was a civil fellow enough. . . . 
[c, x] Have you never [ = not] a son ? ' — Smollett. [This sequence x, d 
— not ordinary when x is expanded and o is a word — occurs usually in two 
cases : when x is a brief negative, and when o is a clause, or is followed by 
ac] ' I graunte wcl that I have erred.' — Chaucer, [x, o] ' The Lord 
added to the church daily such as should be saved.' — Bible, [x, o] * I 
know very well that many are apt to despise both poetry and music' — 
Temple, [x, oc] ' I observed, too, that he turned over the leaves.' — "W. 
Ikvino. [x, oc] ' We spoke not a word. . . . We carved not a line, and 
we raised not a stone.' — Wolfe, [x, o] ' He had vastly the advantage.' 
— Hawthorne, [x, o] ' If you had added, therefore, some conditions. . . . 
He sent, therefore, ambassadors to Carthage.' — Dr. Kennedy, [x, o] * We 
then saw clearly enough our own mistake.' [x, o] 

(c) * He looked up, steadfastly.' — Bible, [v, x] ' London was, but is 
[ = exists] no more.' — Evelyn, [v, x] ' Indeed you saw right.' — Fielding. 
[v, x] ' He that read loudest was to have a halfpenny.' — Goldsmith, 
[v, x] ' We remained awhile in silence.' — Southey. [v, x] ' It is in the 
hands of men who will spend less liberally.' — Macaulay. [v, x] * The 
number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly. . . . Came it unto 
you only ? ' — Bible, [v, xp, x] ' I'll never trust an innocent face again.' 
— Fielding, [o, x] ' He treats his subject home.' — Dryden. [o, x] ' I 
shall see you again. We shall take walks together.' — Cowper. [o, x] ' If 
we understand it r?^A%. . . . They discuss it freely. . . . We should prize 
it far less.' — Macaulay. [o, x] ' Have you given it them, yet ? ' — Db Foe. 
[o, X, x] • He loves money only too well.' [o, x, x, x] 'I punished them 
oft in every synagogue. . . . We will give ourselves continually to prayer. 
. . . Give thyself wholly to them.' — Bible, [o, x, xp] * He drives his 
reader along with him.' — Dryden. [o, x, xp] 

The two rules appended here are the results of our common usage in 
placing attributes and adverbials. 

In an attributive clause, that or which relates to & ne&T substantive word, 
[See § 46, aauses.] 

The adverbial following an object relates to a near verb, or attributive 
word. [See § 7.] 

In the following excerpts the sign a shows here and there the place 
where the adverb might be well inserted. * ' A One wretched actor only 
deserted his sovereign.' — Gifford. ' A One species of bread of coarse 
quality was only allowed to be baked.' — Alison. ' Thoughts are otUy 
criminal a when they are first chosen.' — Johnson. ' He only took them 
A because every other boy was afraid.' — Southey. * Thales was not only 
famous A for his knowledge of nature, but [also] for his moral wisdom.' — 
Enfield. ' We not only saw A the Queen, but [also] the Prince.'— G. 

• Sinners also lend to sinners, to receive a as much again.' — Bible. * To 
the verb only [ = aloiie] belongs the force of assertion. ' Abdiel only [ = alone] 
^as faithful.' * To slowiy trace th^orest's shady scene.' — Bybon. [The 

334 syntax: examples. 

place of the adverb is unusual.] ' You may come to-morrow, oidy \_ = hut'\ 
I am not sure of meeting you.' — Gr. 


Observations. — 1. {a) Of the various forms of adverbial- 
phrases several have been noticed (in § 43), and others will be 
seen in the examples appended. All phrases serving in any way 
to define the meanings of verbs and attributive words are 
here treated of with respect to their common relation, and are 
accordingly called adverbials. Among their various other 
nam.e8 two examples must be especially noticed here, as they 
are often employed in parsing sentences like the following: — 

' Frigoribios parto agricolae pleruTnque fruuntur.' — Virgil. 

^ In frosts their earnings farmers Tnost enjoy.' — Gr. 

When parsing for etymology we describe the forms of words 
and phrases ; in parsing for syntax, their relations. In Latin 
grammar we have names of certain forms, and to a considera- 
ble extent these names serve also to indicate relations. Thus 
when a sentence tells of rain falling, or of a storm rising, we 
see in such forms as caelo and alto not only that they are 
formally ablative, but also that in their uses they are both alike 
adverbial. In Latin, cases of nouns are in numerous instances 
called adverbs, but other cases, as truly adverbial in their 
uses, are described as dative or as ablative forms. Thus 
plerumque is an adverb, but frigoribus is called an ablative 
form, though both are alike adverbial in their relation. The 
two nomenclatures respectively belonging to etymology and 
to syntax are here mixed together, yet without such confusion 
as we have in English parsing, when the objective case is em- 
ployed as a term commonly applied to words having widely 
difi'erent uses. To set aside the term, several English gram- 
marians have rather freely employed names of Latin cases. 
This cannot consistently be done, for — excepting the posses- 
sive, which has a narrow range of uses — we have not one 
case-ending of nouns. On the other hand, if names denote 
uses, the words ' genitive,' ' dative,' and ' ablative ' cannot 
describe well our uses of numerous phrases serving instead of 
inflexions. It is allowed, however, that the names referred to 
would be better than our so-called * objective case,* which has 
no distinct forms and has widely different meanings. 

In our ordinary mode of parsing a sentence like that 
given above, most is of course called an adverb. In its relation 
it is like the phrase in frosts, but this is not treated as an ad- 


verbial. First of all the phrase is dissected, and then frosts is 
described as *a noun in the ohjective case governed by the 
preposition in.' The phrase is thus isolated, not treated as 
one of the four distinct elements in the sentence. Obviously 
such parsing as this belongs more to etymology than to 
syntax. A minute dissection of phrases does not show that 
union of elements which makes a sentence. The objective 
case is so often named that it must be more distinctly noticed 

' The Ohjective Case.'' — The appended parsing of a simple sentence shows 
the construction and the use of an adverbial-phrase. In an ordinary mode 
of parsing, the following would perhaps be the whole account given of the 
noun in the phrase referred to : — ' River is a common noun, neuter, singular, 
and in the ohjective case, governed by the preposition into.'' 

' Many streamlets flow into the river.' 

Many an adjective of number belonging to streamlets. 

streamlets a common noun, neater, plural ; the subject. 

jiow a verb intransitive of the new conjugation, in the indicative 

mood and the present tense ; plural, third person, in con- 
cord with streamlets. 

into a preposition, showing the relation of river tofl^w. 

the a demonstrative adjective, belonging to the river. 

river a common noun, neuter, singular, dependent on the preposi- 

tion into. 

into the river an adverbial-phrase defining or extending the meaning of the 
verb fl^w. 

The division of the phrase into three words shows its construction ; but 
in parsing for syntax the use must also be shown. Every part of the sen- 
tence has some relation to one of its chief elements. The ordinary parsing 
is, therefore, followed here by an observation showing the use of the phrase, 
taken as a whole and defined as one of the chief elements in the sentence. 
The phrase is made of a preposition, an adjective, and a noun, but is em- 
ployed as an adverbial adjunct to the predicate. 

(&) Numerous adverbial-phrases are formed of prepositions 
followed by nouns or pronouns, and are therefore called, with 
respect to their structurCy 'prepositional phrases.' The nouns 
so employed include many verbal forms denoting actions. 
These nouns are sometimes called 'gerunds.' Where the 
action is transitive an object follows, and thus a phrase is 
made including a preposition, a verbal noun, and an object. 

Greneral Syntax describes the elements of sentences and their relations. 
The minute analysis or dissection of isolated phrases, considered as existing 
apart from their relations, belongs to Special Syntax. [See § 49.] 

(c) Certain verbs, adjectives, and complements are habit- 
fPally and more or less approptiately followed by certain pre- 

336 syntax: examples. 

positions, and prepositions are followed by certain nouns made 
appropriate by the laws of usage. The sequences referred to 
are idiomatic, and relate partly to etymology. These sequences 
— to some extent variable — can never be clearly prescribed 
by any series of rules, however numerous. Extensive reading 
and habits of minute observation must here take the place of 
theory. [^See § 49.] So numerous are adverbial expressions 
that, after all endeavours to classify them under names show- 
ing their uses, there remain many that must be collectively 
treated as adverhials of reference. In some instances these 
serve as connective phrases, and are otherwise almost ex- 

2. (a) Adverbial-phrases have generally uses already 
ascribed to adverbials without respect to their various forms. 
Simple adverbs, though numerous, cannot denote clearly all 
the ways in which acts may be defined as regards place and 
time, sequence, manner, means, degree, and limitation. We 
have, therefore, numerous phrases supplying more definite 
forms of expression. For example, the phrase near that tree 
is more definite than the simple adverb there. 

(h) Considered as means of expressing relative notions — 
comparison, proportion, condition, and causality — phrases 
are clearer than words, and clauses are clearer than phrases. 

(c) Phrases serve often to increase or to diminish the force 
of expressions denoting affirmation and negation. 

3. (a) Adverbial- phrases often begin sentences, and some- 
times, when so placed, refer to preceding sentences. 

(h) Adverbial-phrases often follow verbs and comple- 
ments. It is of course implied that adverbial-phrases 
often follow compound tenses, including those of ' the passive 

(c) Adverbial-phrases often follow objects of transitive 
verbs and nouns dependent on prepositions. As regards its com- 
parative freedom of position, the adverbial differs widely from 
the attribute. The latter should always be placed near the 
substantive word to which it relates. But it is understood 
that the adverbial relates to a verb, or to an attributive word, 
and therefore a dependent noun, or an object — sometimes an 
object with an attribute — may come between a verb and an 
adverbial. In numerous places the meaning of the adverbial 
is not shown hy means of reference to the nearest verb or verbal 

(d) Other positions are less noticeable, but three may be 
named. An adverbial-phrase placed between the subject and 



the verb looks, sometimes, like an attribute. [/See § 45, 

(e) An adverbial-phrase is sometimes placed between a 
verb and its complement. This position is not inconvenient 
when the phrase is short. 

(/) An adverbial-phrase is sometimes placed between a 
verb, or transitive verbal form, and its object. As a general 
rule this position is to be avoided when the object is a word 
and the adverbial consists of several words ; but an adverbial- 
phrase may rightly precede an object having the expanded 
form of a clause. With respect to position, the adverbial is 
the most versatile of the elements employed in forming sen- 

(a) Examples of Nouns Employed in Adverbial-Phrases. 

As to money, he's rich enough. 
At midnight we arrived. 
At that time we were absent. 
At this degree it freezes. 
He arrived at neon. 
He learned by teaching. 
He stayed at our house. 
He went into thefidd. 
He will come another time. 
I walked along the shore. 
I walked ten miles. 
In that place we remained. 
It is raining in the valley. 

It was cut with a sword. 

It was done /or that cause. 

It was done on a large scale. 

It was done for your sake. 

Let us go into the playground. 

She died for want of food. 

They scattered flowers on her 

They are soaring over the cliff. 
We were to some extent fortunate. 
With sword in hand he came. 
You were well paid for your 


(6) As regards the forms of adverbial-phrases, two of those most fre- 
quently occurring have been named. {^Observations, 1, i.] But these forms 
are indeed so various, that we may say with an old writer, ' an adverb may 
be made out of anything.' The following list does not give all the names 
applied to the forms of adverbial-phrases : — 

Forms of Adverbial-Phrases. 
It was said in haste. 
You are come in good time. 
He spoke to me. 
He lives to eat. 
He learns by teaching. 
He learns by teaching others. 
We stayed there three days. 
Having rested, they marched on. 

Thou away, the birds are mute. 
Him destroyed .... all this wiU 
soon follow. 

Names of Adverbial- Phrases. 
Preposition + Noun. 
Preposition + Adjective + Noun. 
Preposition + Pronoun. 
Infinitive ; Verbal Noun. 
'Preposition + ' Gerund.' 
Preposition + ' Gerund ' + Object. 
Adjective + Noun. 
Imperfect Participle + Perfect Par- 
' Nominative Absolute.* 
♦ Dative Absolute.' 

[The last form serves in many places as an imitation of the Latin 
' active absolute.'] ' I schewe yow h«nr ye schulde here yow in getyng of 


t538 syntax: examples. 

riches.'' — Chaitcee, The Tale of Meliheus. [This is a form often recurring 
in old literature. The next excerpt is modern.] * He is bent on acquiring 
wealth.^ — G. \_8ee § 49, Sequences.'] 

2. (a) Adverbials of place and time are very numerous : — ' Fyse hig 
man georne [drive them with all speed] ut of }>ysan earde.' — King Cnut, 
Secular Laws. ' William potte J>at kny3t out of cheualry' — John of Tee- 
YisA. ' The Sonne fro the south line is descendid.' — Chaucee. ' The Lord 
bless thee out ofZionJ — Bible. ' Throughout the whole of those lives there 
appears,' etc. — ^Roscoe. 'Ye shed rain from heaven [Lat. caelo'] on the 
seed-lands [Lat. satis'l' — Trans. 0/ Viegil. ' The dead still rule our spirits 
from their umsl — Bteon. * He saw a sail appearing in the distanced 
' There lie on the north side some barren tracts.' ' Caves are often formed 
ioi limestone.' ' The moon sheds radiance over the water.' ' Flowers 
bloom along the bank.' ' The canal intersects the plain from north to south' 
— G. Time : — ' He hit [that land] haefde vii winter.' — Queen Eadgifu, 
A.D. 960. ' This twenty years have I been with thee.' — Bible. ' Old 
families last not three oaks.' — Sie T. Beowne. ' Methusalem might be 
half an hour in telling what o'clock it was.' — Steele. ' Six hours a day 
the students were employed.' — Swift. ' The moon shines too, though not 
for lovers, these cold nights. '-^Fot?e. 

Adverbials relating to the circumstances, the means or instruments, and 
the modes of actions are very numerous : — ' The saboth Tnaad, Jhesus bigan 
for to teche.' — Wycliffe. [The translator follows closely the Latin sab- 
bato facto = ' when the sabbath was come.'] * Thou away, the very birds 
are mute.' — Shakespbaee. * I shall not lag behind, thou leading.' — Milton. 
* This done, he withdraws and leaves them.' — Buntan. ' The fire continu- 
ing, I took coach.' — Evelyn. ' Ujpon looking wp, "What mean," said I, 
" those great flights of birds ?".... Sir Roger, jpopping out his head, 
called a coachman.' — Addison. ' The supper done .... they form a 
circle.' — Buens. 

' The children sported with the laughing waves. 
The sunshine glancing on their naked limbs.' — Alex. Smith. 

Means : — ' The whole river, \in'\ rushing down a steep rock, forms a 
noble cascade.' — Smollett. 'Streamlets by flowing together form rivers, 
and caverns are made by the tricklings of many rills.' — G-. Instrumentality : 
— ' Orpheus, with his lute, made trees bow themselves.' — Shakespeaee. 
Manner : — ' He was techynge hem [them] as hauynge power.' — Wycliffe. 
' John Cornwal, a mayster of gramere, chayngede ]>e construccion of [ = 
from] Freynsch into EnglyschJ — John of Teevisa. \/.e. he taught boys 
to put Latin into English, not into French. — Introduction.'] ' Our aunt 
observed, with a toss of her nose, that Brown was a civil fellow enough.' — 
Smollett. ' In these friendly groups they range the forest. . . . You see 
them going about at their ease, and conversing with each other in short, 
pithy sentences.' — Gilpin. ' He related, with a grave face, how old Mr. 
Cave saw a ghost.' — Macaulay. 

Measure, Weight, and Price : — ' pat welle ys bote [only] twenty foot 
long and twenty foot brood, and no3t deop bote [except] to pe kneo.' — John 
OF Teevisa. 'His brain outweighed his rage but half a grain.' — S. 
Butlee. ' At Verona, in 1228, the interest of money was fixed by law at 
twelve and a half per cent.' — Hallam. ' That is cheap at a shilling.' ' These 
are cheaper at a shilling a gross.' ' He does not care a straw for you.' ' This 
block of marble weighs a ton.' — G. 


(b) Comparison and Proportion: — 'There ben watres that ben fuUe 
byttere, three sithes [times] more than is the water of the see.' — Mandb- 
viiXE. Ms wel may the eherl be saved as the lord.' — The Persones Tale. 
' All their sporte is but a shadoe to that pleasure that I find in Plato. . . . 
In respect of it [study] all other pleasures be but trifles.' — Lady Jake Grey. 

• Kecreation is to the mind as whetting is to the scathe.' — Bishop Hall. 

* As good almost kill a man as a good book.' — Milton. 'Advantages may 
be bestowed in proportion to degrees of virtue.' — Butler. ' [These] appear 
to great advantage.' — Gilpin. ' It was doing on a larger scale what we see 
done every day on a smaller scale.' — Arnold. '-By her in stature the tall 
Amazon had stood a figmy's height. . . . These accents — 0, how frail 
to that large utterance of the early gods ! ' — Keats. ' The present constitu- 
tion of our country is to the constitution under whioh she flourished 
hundred years ago what the tree is to the sapling.' — Macaulay. 

Limitation and Finality: — 'In brief, he [the hypocrite] is the stranger's 
saint.' — Bishop Hall. ' Upon the whole matter .... I take him to have 
been more happy.' — Cowlet. ' For my ovm part, I could not but be 
pleased.' — Addison. ' It -is, upon the whole, a duty which every man 
owes.' — Blackstone. * [It] may be learned in a very considerable degree 
by example.' — Home. ' It is a happy world after all.' — Paley. 

Causality and Purpose: — 'In that lond he wolde suffre deth .... for 
to delyvere us. ... A strong man scholde have ynow to done for to bere o 
[one] clusire with alle the grapes.' — Mandeville. 'All things do her 
[divine law] homage, the very least as feeling her care.' — Hooker. 'What 
went ye out for to see .?.... He knew that for envy they had delivered 
him.' — Bible. 'Studies serve for delight.' — Bacon. 'Why have we so 
many lawyers but to secure our property ? ' — Goldsmith. 

Reference: — * As for jest, there be certain things which ought to be 
privileged from it.'— Bacon. 'As for money, neglect it not.' — Walton. 

* .^5 for being known much by sight, I cannot comprehend the honour.' 
— Cowley. 'These are to take a final leave of you as to this world.' 
— Ray. 'As toiwhing the ordinances, I will deal plainly with you.' — 

(c) Affirmation and Negation: — 'All other pleasures, in very deede, be 
but trifles.' — Lady Jane Grey. ' Th' one has my pity ; not a Jot the other. 
. . . You delight not in music. Not a whit when it jars so.' — Shake- 
speare. ' [He] will by no m^ans clear the guilty.'- - Bible. [The phrase, 
here emphatic, is often vaguely employed instead of not.'] 'The best 
kind of glory, no doubt, is that which is reflected from honesty.' — 
Cowley. 'Do you imagine that it is the land-tax which raises your 
revenue? No! Surely no! ' — Burke. 'I must say "guilty" z<pow my 
honour.' — H. Walpole. ' Talk not of an inn ! Mention it not for your life.' 
— CowPER. ' It was completely ill-natured, to be sure. . . . no ! anxious, 
not I, not the least.' — Sheridan. ' A man's a man for all that.' — Burns. 
' Are all prepared ? They are — nay [ = yea], more— embarked.' — Byron. 

3. (a) Adverbial-phrases ofien begin sentences: — 'In brief, he is the 
stranger's saint.' — Bishop Hall. ' This done, he leaves them.' — Bunyait. 

♦ In all parts of biography Plutarch excelled.' — Deyden. ' Much about the 
tame time, I walked out into the fields.' — De Foe. ' From the first [cause] 
you derive a claim to respect.' — Junius. ' From her situation Rome is 
exposed to the danger.' — Gibbon. ' As to comedy, you have not one idea.' — 
Sheridan. ' In other wars we have been a divided people.' — R. Hall. 
' Amording to him, every person was to4be bought.' — Macaulay. 

z 2 


{b) Adverbial-phrases often follow verbs and complements : — ' Studies serve 
for delight. . . . Some books are to be read only in parts.' — :Bacon. * I was 
received vert/ kindly, and went Jhr Tnany days to the academy.' — Swift. ' I 
write to make you write' — "West. ' His hostility arose from the vexation 
which he felt. . . . The [rate] is now reckoned at one in forty-five. . . . 
The historical literature of England has indeed suffered grievously /row 
a circumstance which has not a little contributed to her prosperity.' — 

(c) Adverbial-phrases often follow objects of transitive verbs and nouns 
dependent on prepositions : — ' Some prying maids reported that they saw 
a lady [o] in a fardingale [ap] through the key -hole [xp].' — Pope. ' We have 
hampered our antagonist in such a manner that .... we shall lay him 
fairly on his back.' — G-oldsmith. ' Mention it not for your life.' — Gowper. 

' We interpret the particular act by the general character. . . . Our rulers 
will best promote the improvement [o] of the people [ap] by strictly con- 
fining themselves [xp, I] to their own legitimate duties [xp, 2].' — Macaulat. 
[Here the first adverbial relates to promote ; the second to the transitive 
verbal form confining.] 

(d) * The whole river Clyde, [in] rushing down a steep rock, forms a very 
noble cascade.' — Smollett. ' The herald then, seeing each champion in his 
place, uplifted his voice.' — Scott. [See § 45, Phrases.] 

{e) ' Meretricious ornaments of every kind are by uncultivated minds pre- 
ferred to the chaste elegance of nature. Metaphors should on no occasion 
be scattered with too profuse a hand.' — W. Irving. ' I stand here before 
you as one who has now for the seventh time been chosen by you.' — Arnold. 
' A circumstance which has not a little contributed to her prosperity.' — 

(/) * [The waters] overspread, without limit or control, the plains and 
cities.' — Gibbon. ' It was doing on a large scale what we see done every 
day on a smaller scale.' — Arnold. 'We may observe [v, transitive], to the 
honour of Mr. Southey [xp, 1], that he never speaks of the people [oc] with 
that pitiful affectation of contempt [xp, 2].' — Macaulay. [The former 
phrase intervenes between the verb and its object-clause ; the latter, fol- 
lowing the object-clause, relates to the verb speaks.] 


Observations. — 1. (a) Adverbial- clauses relate to verbs 
and attributive words, and are usually connected with phrases, 
clauses, and sentences by means of adverbs and subordinative 
conjunctions. [See § 14.] Here and there the initial word 
is a verb. Clauses denoting proportion are introduced by 
such phrases as the more and the less. 

(h) In clauses of condition and supposition — as in some 
expressions of commands, wishes, fears, and purposes — forms 
and constructions called subjunctive are sometimes em- 
ployed, especially in our older literature. [See § 46, Moods.] 

(c) Where the intention is to avoid the use of forms and 
constructions as serving mostly for making assertions, subjunc- 
tive modes of expression are still employed here and there ; 


but for their appropriate uses we have no rule that is com- 
monly observed. [^See § 46, Moods.'] 

2. The uses of adverbial-clauses are generally like those 
of the numerous phrases that serve instead of simple adverbs. 
(a) Such relations of place, time, sequence, etc.j as maybe de- 
noted by phrases are often more clearly expressed by means 
of adverbial-clauses. 

(6) E-elative notions of comparison and proportion, con- 
cession and exception, condition and causality, intentions, 
results, and apprehensions, are often expressed by means of 
adverbial-clauses. Of these some have the constructions 
called subjunctive. [See § 46, Moods.] 

(c) Adverbial- clauses serve sometimes to qualify expres- 
sions of afl&rmation and negation. 

3. The best places for adverbial-clauses are the three here 
chiefly noticed, (a) The adverbial-clause often precedes the 
principal sentence. This position is ordinary where the clause 
is long, but may sometimes denote emphasis. 

(6) The adverbial- clause often follows the verb or its com- 
plemcDt. It often follows, therefore, the attributive part of a 
compound tense. 

(c) In many places an adverbial-clause follows an object, 
or a noun dependent on a preposition. A simple adverb or an 
adverbial-phrase often precedes an adverbial-clause. For 
the sake of emphasis, the beginning of a sentence or of a 
period is the best position for an adverbial having an expanded 

(d) Other positions are less to be commended. Here and 
there an adverbial-clause is placed between the subject and 
the verb. 

(e) A brief clause is sometimes placed between a verb and 
a complement, or between a verb and a following subject 
having the form of a clause. This is a place more conve- 
niently occupied by a simple adverb. 

(/) Where the object is considerably expanded, it some- 
times follows an adverbial-clause; but where the latter is 
considerably extended, it can seldom be placed conveniently 
between a verb and its object. Among the examples ap- 
pended, one deserves especial notice. In this instance two 
adverbial-clauses and a phrase of the same kind are inserted 
between the verb and the object-clause. The passage is 
noticeable, because the writer's usual style is remarkably 
correct. [Examples^ 3,/.] 

<Whe quotation borrowed belongs to* review of Southkt's Colloquies on 
Society, and the reviewer is Macaulay. 

342 syntax: examples. 

Examples. — 1. (a) ' As nature has instructed those kings of trees, so has 
reason taught the kings of men.' — Sir W. Kaleigh. * When he should 
give, he looks about him, and says, "Who sees me?"' — Bishop Hall. 
' When all is done, human life is but like a froward child.' — Sir W. 
Temple. ' The further you follow it, the deeper and broader 'tis.'— Fel- 
rHAM. ' As Sir Roger is landlord to the whole congregation, he keeps them 
va. very good order.' — Addison. ^ Bo what you can, there will still be a 
bias from education.' — Berkeley. ' The more they midti'ply, the more 
friends you will have.' — Burke. ' As the harren country afforded hardly 
any provisions, they were reduced to feed on berries.' — Kobertson. ' Whe- 
ther this story be true or not, he was beyond all question miserably poor.' — 

(b) ' If thy fortune chaunge .... fare wel frendschipe! ' — Chaucer. 
' If the method he confused .... then the ideas which we receive must be 
imperfect.' — Dryden. ' Had all the gentlemen of England made the same 
improvements, our whole country would have been at this time as one great 
garden.' — Addison. 

(c) 'If the words arc any way obscure, then the ideas,' e^c. — Dryden. 

' If we are miserable, it is very consoling to think that there is a place, 
of rest.' — Goldsmith. ' If it is abuse, why one is always sure to hear of 
it.' — Sheridan. 'If this goes on a hundred years,' etc. — Jeffrey. ]^8ce 
§ 46, Moods.-] 

2. {a) Adverbial-clauses of place and time are numerous : — ' Whither 
thou goest I will go, and where thou lodgest I will lodge. . . . Where thou 
diest I will die. . . . Where two or three are gathered together in my name, 
there am I. . . . Before Abraham was I am. [Here the sequence of tenses 
is quite unusual.] . . . Since the world began was it not heard. . . ^ 
When he is come he will reprove the world of sin.' — Bible. ' Where once 
we dwelt our name is heard no more.' — Cowper. ' Where the business of 
government is confined to a few, the faculties of the many become torpid.' — 


Degree : — ' As far as the interests of freedom are concerned, you stand in 
the capacity of the federal representatives of the human race.' — E. Hall. 
' So far as the sphere of feudality extended, it diffused the spirit of liberty.' 
— Hallam. 'It implies that we understand them to be vast, immeasurable, 
impenetrable, inscrutable, mysterious, so that at best we are only forming 
conjectures about them.' — J. H. Newman. 

(b) Comparison and Proportion: — 'Mr re libels have been written 
against me than almost any man now ' vi fg.' — Dryden. [Clauses of com- 
parison are usually elliptical. See § i 5 ] ' We admire it now only as an- 
tiquaries do a piece of old coin.' — South. ' He tells that, and twenty more 
[old stories], as he hath done ever since the Revolution.' — Steele. 

' As duty, love, and honour fail to sway. 
Fictitious bonds, the bonds of wealth and law, 
Still gather strength, and force unwilling awe.' — Goldsmith. 

* They clung about him as captives [cling] about their redeemer.' — Burke. 
'Poetry is as immortal as the heart of man [is immortal].' — Wordsworth. 
' Their debts were more than they were able to discharge.' — Arnold. 
' Honour and shame were scarcely more to him than light and darkness to 
the blind. . . . As the magic lantern acts best in a dark room, poetry effects 
its purpose most completely in a dark age.' — Macaulay. ' As science maJces 
progress m any subject-matter, Tpoetry recedes from it.' — Newman. 'The. 


squire looked at the parson as if he could have beaten himj' — Lytton. ' He 
looked dreamy, as if he was thinking of old times' — Gr. ' In narrative 
poetry, pictures are but passingly named, 05 scenery is noticed by a traveller 
still proceeding on a journey.' — English Poets. 

Concession and Exception : — ' TJiough he slay me yet will I trust in him. 
. . . Except these [shipmen] abide in the ship, ye cannot be saved.' — Bible. 
' The use and benefit of good laws all that live under them may enjoy, 
albeit the grounds from whence they have sprung be unknown' — Hooker, 
' Where the laws required two witnesses, he would not accept one, though 
it were Cato himself — Addison. * I should not have gone to law but that 
I was assured of success.' — Gtoldsmith. ' No work of this sort can be profit- 
able, unless the public be unlling to pay.' — Macaulat. 

Condition and Causality : — ' Sith it hath liked hym to send us such a 
chaunce, we are bounden .... to be content.' — Sir T. More. ' We are 
forced to raise our rents by reason we must buy so dear.' — W. Stafford, 
1581. ' Had he been born an absolute prince, his humanity and good sense 
had rendered his reign happy.' — HtJME. [In p, as in xc, the construction 
is subjunctive, denoting in each case that the writer is expressing a suppo- 
sition. 8ee § 46, Moods."] ' I hope we shall witness all this [display of 
courage] if the French do come.' — S. Smith. ' He only took them because 
evtry other boy was afraid.' — Sottthet. [The right order would be only 
because, etc.] ' He retired .... since he could not fulfil his natural calling.' 
— Arnold. ' He tells us that Bishop Sprat was very properly so called, 
inasmuch as he was a very small poet.' — Macatjlay. ' We overestimate the 
value of Talent, because it dazzles us ; and we are apt to underrate the im- 
portance of Will, becattse its works are less shining.' — Gr. H. Lewes. ' The 
Spartans, you say, were hard men because they hadhard laws ; nay, the 
laws were hard because the men were hard.' — Gr. 

Intentions, Apprehensions, and Results: — ' Follow my counsel, less [lest] 
ye meet either with poverty or Tyburn in the way.' — Ascham. ' Take heed 
lest any man deceive you. . . . Take heed that no man deceive you. ... 
Honour thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long' — Bible. 
' That our readers may be the better able to appreciate the merits of this de- 
fence, we will state, as concisely as possible, the substance of some of these 
laws.' — Macaitlat. ' The fir-trees and cedars of Lebanon blend their 
voices, and the dead are called up from their graves, that they may join in 
a song of triumph over a fallen oppressor.' — English Poets. 

(c) ' The understanding was then, as it were, the soul's upper region.* — 
SoxTTH. ' True it is — as St. Paul observes — that .... the duties of natural 
religion may be discovered.' — Berkeley. ' My merits, whatever they are, 
are original and personal.' — Burke. ' Bold as your assertions are, they are 
but one-sided.' — Gr. 

3. (a) ' As he goes on in mathematics, the road becomes smooth and 
easy.' — Home. ' Were he never so benighted, there is always hope in a man 
that actually and earnestly works.'— Carlyle. 'As his own mind is small, 
he can see nothing great.' — Gr. [N.B. The best places for adverbial-clatises 
are shown in the examples already given.] 

(b) ' Who can direct, when all pretend to know ? ' — Goldsmith. * The 
black rock .... was visible, and continued to be so, until they came to a 
turn.' — ScoTT. ' On that side they would not descend, because it was too 
steep.' [Several examples have been given in noticing the forms and the 
uses of adverbial-clauses.] 

(c) 'I threw away my rattle before I was two months old, and would 

344 syntax: examples. 

not make use of my coral until they had taken away the hells from it.' — 
Addison. [Several examples have been given in noticing the forms and 
the uses of adverbial-clauses.] 

id) ' The woollen coatj for example, which covers the day-labourer, as 
coarse and rough as it may ajpjpear, is the produce of the joint labour of 
a great multitude of workmen.' — A, Smith. ' We are, on the whole, 
inclined to think .... that the labouring classes of this island, though 
they have their grievances and distresses .... are, on the whole, better off.' 
— Macaulay. 

(e) ' The understanding was then, as it were, the soul's upper region.' — 
South. ' My misfortune was that, when the wind served, I happened to be 
with a party in the country.' — Gtoldsmith. 

(/) ' We are, on the whole, inclined to think, though we would speak 
with diffidence on a point on which it would be rash to pronounce a positive 
judgment without a much longer and closer investigation than we have 
bestowed upon it, that the labouring classes of this island, though they have 
their grievances and distresses— some produced by their own improvidence, 
some by the errors of their rulers — are, on the whole, better off as to 
physical comforts than the inhabitants of any equally extensive district of 
the old world.' — Macaxjlat. [The placing of the adverbials is not good. 
Viewed apart from the writer's name, the whole period might pass as 
an attempt to put into English the involved sentences of some German 


Objects, defined with respect to their relations, are 
those substantive expressions which directly or imme- 
diately follow transitive verbs and verbal forms, and make 
complete such predicates as denote transitive acts. The 
object might, therefore, be rather vaguely called a com- 
plement, but in speaking more distinctly it should be 
described as a completion of a transitive verb. The 
word transitive, as employed here, applies to any verb 
that, in any given passage, expresses the notion of a tran- 
sitive act, or one described as passing on and requiring an 

A verb that in one place is intransitive may in another be transitive. 
In dictionaries we have stereotype 'verbs intransitive' and 'verbs transi- 
tive ' — i.e. verbs so called without respect to their contexts. But these 
hard definitions are not practically regarded. [See §§ 11, 46, Verbs, 2.] 

The act expressed by a transitive yerb is described as 
one that passes on from a cause or an agent, and either 
so as to create something or so as to make a change in 
something. This general notion is modified when we 
speak of acts that have no real effects, and of objects that 
are ideal. 

objects: words. 345 

The notion of causation, strictly understood, implies a transference of 
force, such as is denoted in the assertion ' He felled a tree.' But in the 
sentences ' They saw the rocks ' and ' He made logic his study ' no such 
transference is implied. A question might here arise — Does there exist, 
apart from our own notions, any ground for the distinction made between acts 
that pass on and acts that do not ? The question is named because it might 
be suggested by some words here employed. It belongs, however, to general 
logic, or to science strictly so called. The grammatical distinction made 
here relates only to the usages of Modern English. A verb that, in our 
own tongue, is indirectly/ followed by a substantive expression may, in 
another tongue, be directly followed, and, vice vcrsd, our direct sequence may 
for translation require an indirect sequence. The English verb attack and 
the French attaquer are cognate in their etymology and are equivalent in 
their syntax. But in syntax agree is not equivalent to agreer, and annoy 
is not equivalent to nuire. In numerous instances similar variations of 
construction make our modern syntax distinct from that of First English. 
The latter is often like Latin in the employment of genitive and dative 
cases after certain verbs. 

The object answers the question asked by putting 
whom or what after a transitive verb, and in giving 
the answer no preposition, either expressed or under- 
stood, is required in good English. This is the gram- 
matical rule for finding the object. 

To the rule there is but one exception, and this is merely formal or 
apparent. Ex.: 'He would like to come.' He would like what? To come. 
Here the main part of the substantive giving the answer is come, a verbal 
noun often called ' the infinitive.' This is employed as s, or as o, and has in 
M.E., as in E.II., the sign to prefixed. In E.I. the particle to was prefixed, 
not to the subject having an infinitive form ending in an, but to an oblique 
case ending in anne. This is sometimes called 'the gerund' and 'the 
dative ; ' but these names do not clearly indicate its various uses, which 
are generally such as belong respectively to attributes, complements, and 
adverbials. These uses were formally indicated by both the ending and 
the particle. In M.E. the particle in to write — employed as s or as o — has 
not the usual force of the preposition. Nor has it the force of to in adver- 
bial-phrases denoting purposes. Ex.: '"We came here to play, not to 
quarrel.' In the sentence ' To work is my pleasure,' to is a sign, and its use 
— that of the noun-suffix ing. 7b work used as s or as o = working, and, 
with a shade of distinction in meaning, = work. Hence this use of the 
particle to makes no true exception to the rule that objects directly or im- 
mediately follow transitive verbs and verbal forms. 


Observations. — 1. The names given to words serving as 
objects are various. Of these names several must be noticed, 
because they are often employed. 

(a) It should first be obiferved that the name ohjed^ as 

346 syntax: examples. 

used by some grammarians, has a meaning far wider than 
that of the definition already given. 

' The object,^ says Dr. Kiihner, * includes all that bears a relation to the 
predicate so as to make it complete, or define it more closely.' \^Greek 
Grammar, 1865.] Accordingly, he goes on to show that o^ecits are denoted 
by the following forms : — any one of the three cases of nouns, the Accusa- 
tive, the Genitive, and the Dative ; a case used with a preposition ; an in- 
finitive {i.e. a verbal noun) ; a participle ; an adverb. This very wide 
definition is noticed only to show that it is not accepted here. Writers 
accepting it would speak of direct or of immediate objects when they defined 
such words as we have described and called objects. Such words, it might 
be added, have in Latin the form of the accusative case; but the latter 
assertion requires modification. In the sentence ' They enjoy their earnings ' 
the last word is f he object ; but to put it into Latin the ablative form 
{parte) would be employed. 

(6) Among the nouns and pronouns that in English follow 
transitive verbs, many follow directly, and would, in Latin, 
have accusative case-endings. 

(c) Other nouns and pronouns are placed next to tran- 
sitive verbs, but follow indirectly. Their indirect sequence 
is shown by the fact that, without change of meaning, one of 
the prepositions to or for may be placed between the verb and 
the substantive word, which, in Latin, would have the form 
of the dative case. The use of the dative is adverbial, and 
its forms give answers to such questions as ' To whom ? ' ' For 
whom ? ' ' For what ? ' 

In Latin, as in E.I.,the noun would have an accusative and the pronoun 
a dative form in the sentence 'Forgive us our trespasses.' In the ordinary 
way of parsing, all the nouns and all the pronouns here referred to are 
treated as so many substantive words in the objective case {b and c), and 
no notice is taken of the difference shown in these observations. 

{d) Among our substantive words many follow preposi- 
tions, and thus serve to form phrases having adverbial uses, 
including among others those which, in Latin, are denoted 
by the forms of dative and ablative cases. 

Substantives depending on prepositions are also commonly described 
as nouns and pronouns in the objective case. The substantive so defined 
may serve as an object, or as an adverbial, or as part of an adverbial. 

(e) In each instance the question arises, how shall it be distinctly 
named ? In the first place {b) it is here called an object ; in the next (c) it 
is called an adverbial ; in the third {d) it is treated as forming a part of an 
adverbial-phrase. When the phrase is 'parsed,' or dissected, the word de- 
fendent applies to the noun or to the pronoun governed by the preposition. 
[§ 43, Government; § 49, Sequences.'] 

2. (a) The noun has no change o^ form to show that it 

objects: words. 347 

serves as an object. Its use is indicated by its place, or by 
the context. 

(b) There are passages where doubts may arise respecting 
the distinction to be made between objects and such words as 
often follow objects, and serve as the complements of vagne 
transitive verbs, especially of verbs like make. \_See § 46, 
Complements J Words."] 

(c) There are seven pronouns that have dependent or 
governed forms, employed wherever these pronouns serve as 
objects : — me, us, thee, him, her, them, and the interrogative 
and relative word whom. But these words do not exclusively 
represent objects. The same forms may be governed by pre- 
positions, and — excepting whom — each may have the use of 
a dative case in Latin. Whom follows to or for where a dative 
adverbial meaning is to be expressed. 

Of the corresponding pronominal forms in E.I. all may serve as dative 
cases, and three — him, >ani, and hwam — are distinctly dative. But this 
case-name cannot generally apply to our dependent forms of pronouns so 
as to indicate at once their forms and their uses. To students who have 
too narrowly defined the uses of adverbs it seems an innovation when me, 
him, and them, as employed in many places, are classed with adverhials. 
Two facts should therefore be noticed here : — The tises of the Latin dative 
case are clearly adverbial, and the forms of numerous adverbs are historically 
rightly described when they are called ' petrified cases of nouns and pro- 
nouns.' In their relations these cases are adverbials, or are parts of ad- 
verhials. [§ 49, Sequetices.'] Confusion is the result of employing in syntax 
names of forms instead of names that indicate relations. 

{d) The relative pronoun is not governed by the transitive 
verb that governs the antecedent. As regards number and 
person, the relative, by means of its position, represents the 
antecedent. [§ 46, Special Observations, 8.] But an antecedent 
object may be followed by a relative subject, as an antecedent 
subject may be followed by a relative object. Or both may 
be governed words, while the government of each is distinct 
from that of the other. The relative introduces a clause, and 
is governed by some word contained in this clause. 

(e) The object is sometimes a verbal noun ending in ing ; 
but in very numerous passages — especially in old literature — 
nouns having this form are made dependent on prepositions. 
The verbal noun may be intransitive, though its cognate verb 
may be employed mostly with a transitive force. When tran- 
sitive, the verbal has of course an object, and, taken together 
with its object, makes a phrase. Adverbs sometimes modify 
verbal nouns. [§ 48, Phrases, 2.] 
^ (/) Here and there a wor^ seldom employed as a noun 


serves as an object, mostly where the style of speaking is 
humorous or colloquial. 

3. (a) In its ordinary place the object follows the govern- 
ing verb, and where they are divided by intervening elements 
— adverbial or attributive — these are not greatly expanded. 
[§ 47, Words,d; Phrases, S.] 

(b) Excepting relation to subjects, all that has been said 
of attributes applies to the uses and places of attributes be- 
longing to objects. Simple adjectives precede the objects to 
which they relate, but expanded attributes follow. [§ 45, 
Clauses, 5.] 

(c) Short adverbial expressions often precede and often 
follow objects. The more expanded forms of adverbials 
mostly follow. Adverbials often follow verbal nouns. [§ 47, 
Words, 3 ; Phrases, 3 ; Clauses, 3.] 

(d) In many places — in prose as well as in verse — the 
object begins a sentence. 

Examples. — 1. (a) 'The accusative denotes the immediate completion 
(the immediate object) of a verb.' — Dr. KiJHNEE. 

(b) Many -writers apply the name Accusative to words here called 

(c) ' The Dative Case shows the person to whom something is told or 
given, or for whom some action is performed.' — E. Adams, English 

{d) All the words here variously described as ' objects,' * accusative 
cases,' ' dative cases,' and ' dependent ' substantives are commonly treated 
as so many examples of the objective case. The writers who thus employ 
that name are too numerous to be noticed distinctly. As a contrast to their 
method, the next excerpt should be noticed. 

(e) ' " / told him my opinion." The object of the verb is " my opinion," 
and " him " is equivalent to to him, and consequently is in the adverbial 
relation to the verb " told." ' — C. P. Mason. 

2. (a) In the following excerpts all the words serving as objects are 
taken together with the short nttributive words belonging to them, and are 
set in Italic: — ' What numbers do I see here! .... How is it possible that 
half this multitude find employment ? . . . . The catchpole watches the 
man in debt, the attorney watches the catchpole, the counsellor watches the 
attorney, the solicitor the counsellor, and all find sufficient employment. . . . 
So the whangam [a reptile] ate the grasshopper, the serpent ate the whangam, 
the yellow bird the serpent, and the hawk the yellow bird ; when, sousing 
from on high, a vulture gobbled up the hawk, grasshopper, whangam, and 
all in a moment.' — Goldsmith. 

{b) Again, objects, taken together with their attributive words, are set 
in Italic. The complements of transitive verbs are followed by the sign 
cm : — ' There once lived a youth, who was well trained by an athlete, and 
acquired skill in the art of wrestling. But tho trainer reserved for his 
own use one sleight, of which the pupil knew nothing. However, he won, 
without that, several victories — so easily, indeed, that he grew vain, and at 
last he challenged his master. A fair trial of their skill soon followed. 

objects: words. 849 

The jouth made a violent attack. The athlete stood, for a time, firm as an 
iron pillar. Then he grasped the youth, lifted him up, and laid him down. 
" That sleight" said the youth, " I did not understand." " That slei_ght" 
said the master, " I kept for myself ; for I remembered our old proverb 
— I made the hoy [o] an archer [cm], and then he made tm [o] his butt 
[cm]." '— G. 

(c) ' Thy hand shall lead me. ... I will praise thee. . . . Make us 
glad. . . . JFAow have I in heaven but thee ? ' — Bible. 'I believe I may 
venture [= trust] thee. ... I asked Am how people did thereabouts. . . . 
He bid her stay a few moments. ... I do not abandon them ; I keep them 
from want.' — De Foe. 

(d) ' They dart out somewhat that is piquant.' — Bacon. [The antece- 
dent somewhat = o, but the relative that = s.J * He whom thou lovest is 
sick.' — Bible. \_He = s, but whom — c] ' "We have found him of whom 
the prophets did write.' — Bible. [Him = o governed by ' found,' but whom 
is dependent on the preposition.] ' Obey them that have the rule over you.' 
— Bible. [Them = o governed by ' obey,' but that = s of the clause.] 

♦ Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.' — Bible. 
[Here the order usually observed is inverted, and ac precedes p. Whom 
= governed by * worship,' and him = o governed by * declare.' The 
same inversion of order is seen in the next excerpt.] • Whom he called, 
them he also justified.' — Bible. [Whom = o governed by 'called,' and them 
= governed by ' justified.'] 

(e) ' Fredome makes man to have liking.' — Baebotjk. ' He knew oure 
britil making.' — Herefoed, Psalter, ' pe water ]?er-of ha]> wondur [won- 
derful] worckyng.' — John of Trevisa. ' Tak not sair in mind the waver- 
ing of this wretchit warld of sorrow.' — Dunbar. ' He heard minstrelsie 
and daunsynge.' — Tyndale. ' [I], now pride of youth is past, do love to 
be and let all seeming pass.' — G-ascoigne. ' I remember the wooing. . . . 
I hear a knocking' — Shakespeare. ' If he read little, he had need have 
much cunning [ability].' — Bacon. ' Thou rulest th^ raging of the sea.' — • 
Bible. ' The multitude of sufferers does not lessen, but [does] increase the 
sufferings.' — J. Taylor. 'He first made writing easily an art [cm].' — 
Dhyden. ' No person can take amiss our not visiting.' — Southby. ' Oh, 
who would not welcome that moment's returning ! ' — Moore. ' She would 
have no more prophesyings.' — H. Morley. 

(/) ' Mark you his absolute shall !' — Shakespeare. ' 'Tis heaven itself 
that points out an hereafter.' — Addison. 

3. (a) • Follow it step by step.' — Locke. * Have you given it them 
yet ? ' — De Foe. ' They owed their advancement to her choice.' — Hume. 

* You could not lose it by mistake.' — Junius. ' He has Coke and Hales for 
him.' — Goldsmith. ' John divided the silver among them.' — Richardson. 
' I seriously admire the piece. . . . What is the purpose of showing a work 
to a friend ? ' — Sheridan. 

(6) ' This invention had employed all his thoughts.' — Swift. ' Your 
tropes suit the general coarseness [ a, o] of your style [ap following o].' — 
Sheridan. ' It was time to declare the pledge [o] of Rebecca [ap] for- 
feited [cm].' — Scott. • Cyrus attacked the Persian soldiers [a, o] stationed 
in front of the king [ap following o].'— G. 

(c) ' I shall be willing to allow a man one round of my watch.' — Steele. 
' They saw a lady [o] in a fardingale [ap] through the key-hole [ax to v].' 
— Pope. ' To recover at any price the honour of his friendship.' — Junius. 
^ou shall see on the right hand a ^ox of my making.' — Cowpbr. ' The 

350 syntax: examples. 

Temple sondeth not forth her champions [o] against nameless men [xp 
tov].' — Scott. * He will prosper your going out and your coming in' — 


(d) ' The same we term a law. . . . The use and benefit of good laws all 
who live under them can enjoy.' — Hookeb. * And this we enjoy daily.' — 
Walton. ' Paul I know, hut who are ye ? ' — Bible, ' Him the Almighty 
Power hurled headlong .... from the sky.' — Milton. ' The praise of 
Bacchus then the sweet musician sung.' — Detden. ' Slavery they can 
have anywhere.' — Buekje. ' These calamities our Eevolution averted.' — 


Ohservations. — 1. Verbal nouns, like verbal adjectives and 
complements, require objects when their meanings are transi- 
tive. Objective phrases may consist of verbal nouns followed 
bj words either directly or indirectly governed ; in the latter 
case, a preposition intervenes between the verbal noun and 
the dependent substantive word. It should be remembered 
that the relation of a word following a verbal noun belonging 
to a phrase does not show the relation of the whole phrase 
itself, which may serve as an adverbial or as an attribute. 

{a) When followed by words directly governed, or when 
employed alone, the infinitive forms of which to write is an 
example may serve to make objective phrases. 

(6) Verbs in meaning like expect are followed by infinitive 
forms of which to see is an example. These forms, serving as 
objects, may at the same time require objects, and may follow 
either the present or the past forms of preceding verbs. 
Without its usual sign to, an infinitive form may follow any 
one of the verbs called auxiliary and irregular, excepting he 
and go ; or may follow a substantive word placed next to any 
one of the following verbs : — hid, feel, hear, let, need, and see. 
The substantive word placed next to a verb in meaning like 
helieve or know is sometimes followed by to he with a comple- 
ment, as in Latin the Accusative is often followed by the In- 
finitive, and thus forms an objective phrase. 

(c) Infinitive forms followed by words indirectly governed 
serve to make objective phrases. 

(d) Compound infinitive forms, less frequently employed 
than the forms already noticed, serve to make objective 

2. (a.) In Modern English many attributive and adverbial 
phrases consist of forms in ing made dependent on preposi- 
tions and followed by objects ; in E.II. forms in ing, employed 
as nouns, are in numerous instances made dependent on pre- 

objects: phrases. 351 

positions, and words following nouns in ing are frequently- 
made dependent on the preposition o/, as in the following 
excerpt, which is taken from an old treatise called ' A Tale,' 
and commonly ascribed to Chaucer : — 

' Fastynge stont [ = consists] in thre thinges; in forbering of [ = ab- 
staining /roTTi] bodily mete and drink, and in forbering of worldly jolit6, 
and in forbering 0/ worldly synne.' — The Persones Tale. 

Our extended modern uses of words directly governed by- 
verbal forms in ing are to be classed among the chief chai-ac- 
teristics of Modern English. Of the two following phrases 
it is on the whole correct to say, the former is old and the 
latter is new : — 

Old. New. 

' By the preaching of repentance.' * By preaching repentance.' 

The preceding excerpt from The Persones Tale truly 
represents numerous old constructions of verbal nouns ; 
but for words of the same class E.II. has other constructions, 
of which examples are given in the sequel. [Examples, 2, a 
and &.] 

(6) Verbal nouns in ing, governed directly, but followed 
by words governed indirectly, serve to form objective phrases. 

(c) Here and there verbal nouns in ing, placed as objects, 
and at the same time so as to govern objects, serve to make 
objective phrases. Of these phrases several, though rarely 
found in books, have been made common enough by colloquial 

(d) The compound verbal forms, made by placing parti- 
ciples after having, or being, or having been, are proportion- 
ately seldom employed. They serve here and there as 
objective phrases or as phrases made dependent on preposi- 
tions. Phrases like having loved may of course be followed 
by words directly governed. 

(e) In many places a verbal adjective in ing, followed 
by an object, makes a phrase, of which the relation is some- 
times attributive and sometimes adverbial. 

3. (a) In the examples already given, showing the usual 
places of adverbials, the places of objects are also shown. 
[See § 47.] 

(b) When an adverbial and an object come together — 
both relating to one verb — the form more expanded often 
follows ; thus the phrase often follows the word. But as 
regards a place near the verb, the claim of the objective 
phrase is generally prior to that of any adverbial, excepting a 
simple adverb. [8ee, in this stction, Phrases, 1, 2.] 

352 syntax: examples. 

Examples. — 1. (a) 'He ongan [began] smesig&n[to study].' — King 
^LFREB. ' This man began to build.* — Bible. ' He no-w prepared to speak.' 
— Milton. ' An [One] ongan fyrene [an evil deed] fremman [to do].' — 
Beowulf. 'He ongan hi laeran [to teach them]. . . . All begin to mock 
him. . . . All began to make excuse.' — Bible. ' William grauntede hys 
enymyes to do pe same.' — John of Teevisa. ' I did not think to shed a 
tear.' —Shakespeare. 

(b) ' I expected to plough my land last Monday.' — Cobbett. * ' I thought 
to have slain him where he stood.' — Scott. [Here to slay him is the correct 
phrase.] ' Last week I intended to begin building the wall.' — Gr. ' Se bis- 
ceop hine let faran [let him go].' — ^lfbic. 'He wolde gladly here this 
heremyte preche' — Mandevilie. ' ' When the French king saw them flee.' — 
LoedBerners. 'Myself. ... do love to Be, and let all Seeming pass.' — Gas- 
coiGNE. ' Bid me discourse.' — Shakespeare. ' I saw a mob gather about me.' 
— GrOLDSMiTH. ' I hear thee speak of a better land' — Mrs. Hemans. 'We 
heard the cataract roar.' ' I saw him catch the trout.' ' I saw the bat flit 
by.' — G. ' I knew thee to be expert.' — Bible. ' I believe the man to be 
guilty.' — C. P. Mason. 

(c) ' Every man must begin to be more ready to amend himself — Ascham. 
' By that sin fell the angels ; how can man, then, .... hope to win by it ? ' 
— Shakespeare. ' Satan went round the globe, contriving constantly to 
ride with darkness.' — Macaulat. 

(d) ' Ye wolde eschewe to be cleped an averous man.' — Chaucer. ' Such 
groans .... I never remember to have heard.' — Shakespeare. 'They 
love to be called " Rabbi." ' — Bible. ' Sir William remembered the coat to 
have been frequently worn by his nephew.' — Goldsmith. ' I should like to 
have known that good Samaritan.' — Thackeray. 

2. [In the following examples words belonging to phrases and directly 
governed are set in Italic, (a) ' Than [ = Then there] is discipline oek (also) 
in suffring ^acientlj urrojtges that ben doon to him, and eek in pacient sufFer- 
aunce of maledies.' — 2 he Persones Tale. ' So joy I in you seeing [i.e. in seeing 
you].' —^iR P. Sydney. ' What a brave privilege to be free from receiving 
and from paying all kinds of ceremonies! ' — Cowley. 'He occupied him- 
self with farming his glebe. . . . Nelson gave orders for boarding that shi'p. 
. . . The French protested against giving him ^^w ^ro?^i/(?.' — Sotjthey. [The 
special syntax of each phrase has been noticed. As to their general syntax, 
each of the phrases here dissected is an adverbial, excepting the attributive 
phrase \for boarding that ship.'] 

(b) ' This sacrament bitokeneth ^Ae knytting togider of Christ and of 
holy chirche. . . . We schuln give rekenyng of every ydel word.' — The 
Persones Tale. ' The mayor called a common council for to purvey the 
withstanding of these rebels." — Fabian. ' Would your honour please to 
let the bespeaking of the table alone ? ' — Sterne. ' It is not everybody 
who could have so dexterously avoided blundering on the daylight.'—^ 

(c) ' Thou respect' st not spilling Edward's blood.' — Shakespeare. * I 
like hearing music' — C. P. Mason. ' He does not like paying his debts. 
. . . They soon began building the walls.' — G. 

(d) ' We cannot help being dismayed at the prospect.' — Jeffrey. 

(e) *Ye schul flee avarice, usyngeyowre richesse.' — Chaucer. 'Wanting 
money, I might not then speed.' — Lydgate. * Eneas departed, bearing his 
old fader.'— GAXToy!. 'So is my love still telling wAa^ is told.' — Shake- 
SPBAEB. 'Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world.' — 

objects: clauses. 353 

Bible. «He conceives that he ought to be a Paul Pry choosing our opinions 
for us.' — Macaulat. [The general syntax of the phrase is not noticed 
here, where the aim is only to point out some words directly governed.] 


Observations. — 1. With one exception, all that has been said 
in defining noun- clauses placed as subjects applies also to ob- 
jective clauses. These are sometimes placed in apposition 
with nouns ; seldom in apposition with it. The ordinary con- 
nective of abstract objective clauses is that, which is sometimes 
omitted. [See § 44, Glauses.] 

2. Pronouns and adverbs used in asking questions are 
also employed as connectives of concrete objective clauses. 
Several clauses, connected or unconnected, may be governed 
by one verb, or by one verbal adjective. Clauses are 
often governed by the verbal nouns in ing, called gerunds. 

3. (a) The places of objective clauses are mostly shown 
in the examples given to show the more ordinary places of 
adverbials. \_8ee § 47.] Where an adverbial and an object 
come together — both relating to one verb — the form more 
expanded often follows; thus the phrase often follows the 
word, and the clause often follows the phrase. As regards a 
place near the verb, the claim of a direct object is generally 
prior to that of any adverbial having a form considerably 

(6) As regards attributive adjuncts, all that has been 
said of attributes qualifying subjects applies also to the various 
forms of attributes employed to qualify objects. Simple 
adjective forms precede the words qualified ; but the more 
expanded forms of attributes follow. The attributive clause 
must be placed near the word k) which it belongs, and can 
seldom be well employed to qualify an objective clause taken 
as a whole. [iSee § 45, Clauses, 5.] 

(c) In its ordinary place, the objoct follows the verb or 
governing word ; but, for the sake of emphasis or variety, 
an objective clause may be employed to begin a sentence. 
\_See § 65.] 

Examples. — 1. 'Yee schuUe understonde that Machamete was horn in 
Arahye' — Mandevillh. 'He chargede J>a< hy scholde take no prayea 
\^= spoils]' — John of Trevisa. ' Now schul ye understonde that the re- 
levy nge of avarice is misericorde [mercy] and pitS.' — The Fersmes Tale. 
' Solomon saith truly : " Of making many books there is no end." ' — Fttllkk, 
♦For just experience tells, in every soil, 
• That those who think must govttn those who toil.* — Goldsmith. 

A A 

354 syntax: examples. 

We see no reason for thinking that the opinwns of the magistrate are more 
likely to be right. . . . He thinks that the country is hastening to destruc- 
tion.' — Macatjlay. * He held the strange theory that children are born 
with minds like blank 'paper.' — Gr. 

2. ' Thei ne "wysten [ =knew] never where that thei scholde arryven. . . . 
The lordes of Normandy consaylde a-monge ham-sylf what were beste to do! 
— John of Trevisa. 

' Ask me no more where Jove bestows, 
When June is past, the fading rose.' — Carew. 

' It is necessary to understonde whens [ = whence^ that synnes s]pringe, 
and how they encresen, and whiche they ben.' — The Persones Tale. ' Con- 
sider what thou wert, what thou art, what thou shall be.' — Quarles. ' So 
she asked him what they were, whence they came, and whither they were 
bound, and he told her.' — Bunyan. ' He adjures the spectre to tell him 
what he is and why he comes.' — Macaulay. ' What does experience prove ? 
That your forefathers were great blockheads, and that their descendant is 
not a whit the wiser.' — Lytton. 

3. (a) ' Let the world witness /or me [xp] that I have been often want- 
ing to myself [oc] in that particular [xp].' — ^Dryden. [The relations of the 
two adverbials are distinct ; the former relating to witness, the latter to 
wanting. '\ 'I fancy we shall have rain [oc] by the shooting of my corns 
[xp].' — Goldsmith. [The placing of the xp is not to be judged by the rule 
for placing ap.] * You may see with anguish [xp] how much real import- 
ance and authority you have lost [oc].' — Junius. ' The British sailors re- 
marked to each other [xp] what a fine sight yonder ships would make at 
Spithead [oc]. . . . 'H.e ohseryed, as they were carrying him down the ladder 
[xc], that the tiller ropes, which had been shot away, were not yet replaced 
[oc, enlarged by ac relating to s], and ordered that new ones should be rove 
immediately [oc].' — Southed. 'It was doing on a larger scale \x^'\ •v/ho.t 
we see done [oc] every day [xp] on a smaller scale [xp].' — Arnold. ' Pizarro 
called out with stentorian voice [xp], " Let no one who values his life strike at 
the hica " [oc, enlarged by ac relating to s].' — Prescott. 

(6) ' A wine merchant told her he had some Rhenish wine, which had 
been in his own possession more than half a century [oc, followed by ac].* 
— Southey. 

(c) ' What he found amiss in the first edition, he silently corrected.' — 
Johnson. ' '* There is no real happiness in this tvorld," said he, writing to 
Earl St. Vincent.' — Southey. ' Whether the old or the new vice be the 
worse, we shall not attempt to decide. . . . Why a spirit was to be evoked 
for the purpose .... why the vicar of the parish might not have done as 
well — we shall not attempt to decide.' — Macaulay. ' '^ Lenny Fairfield 
should have the preference," muttered the parson.' — Lytton. 


The elements of sentences have been described and 
called respectively subjects, attributes, verbs, comple- 
ments, adverbials, and objects. \_See § 43.] 

With these elements that ' part of speech ' called a 
preposition has not been classed, because it is a word that 

niEPOsiTiONS : sequences. 355 

cannot take the place of any one of the elements already 
named. A word often used as a preposition may serve as 
an adverb ; but the same word, treated as a preposition, 
is a mere particle employed in making a phrase. The 
phrase itself may be an adverbial or an attribute. The 
use of the particle is as subordinate as that of the letter i 
in the Latin word d6m-i (= at home). The uses of prepo- 
sitions — already shown in many examples of phrases — 
must here be treated of more distinctly. In other words, 
the special syntax — the internal structure — of the phrases 
called prepositional remains to be noticed. 

The question will sometimes arise, Is the phrase attributive or ad- 
verbial? In this case substitute a nearly equivalent word, and ask, What 
part of speech is this ? Or substitute a clause, and ask, What is its use ? 


Observations. — 1. Prepositions serye for making phrases, 
including those which serve as translations of oblique cases 
in Latin and other synthetic tongues (a). Among other 
phrases we have to notice those serving as attributes (&), 
and those — far more numerous — serving as adverbials (c). 

In parsing to show the organic structure or the union of a sentence, a 
phrase = a part or member, and should not be dissected. If from must be 
set apart in parsing from heaven, then O must be so treated in parsing 
the word caelo. 

(a) ^ Cael-o demittit imbrem'=' From heaven he sheds 
rain,' and in the first word =from. But a case in Latin 
often requires the aid of a particle to show its force, as in the 
phrase ex alto (' out of the deep '), employed when we are 
speaking of a storm coming up (apparently) out of the sea ; 
for alto alone might = ' in the deep.' Caelo is a form called the 
ablative case, and here the name partly indicates the use of the 
word, as the case serves often to denote the -place from which 
an action proceeds. But the ablative, like every other obUque 
case, has various uses. The names of Latin cases are sometimes 
employed to describe the uses of English phrases, and are 
suitable here and there ; but in many instances they are use- 
less. The substitution of the general term adverhial^ as ap- 
plicable to a very large majority of our prepositional phrases, 
may be recommended by a reference to the history of noun- 
cases, adverbs, and prepositions. In many instances cases 
scfving as adverbs have been set apart and formally classified 

AA 2 

356 syntax: examples. 

witli adverbs, while the nouns from which they at first sprung 
have been forgotten. From time to time adverbs have re- 
quired various modifications to make their meanings mojje 
special, and to meet these requirements nouns have been 
appended, so that adverbs have become prepositions, while in 
many instances the particles as first used may still serve as 
adverbs. In short — excepting some phrases serving as attri- 
butes — our prepositional phrases are on the whole equivalent 
to so many expanded forms of adverbs. These phrases have, 
therefore, been mostly classified with adverbials. If thence 
in the sentence ' Thence he sends rain ' is an adverb, it follows 
that, as regards meaning, caelo and its translation /rom heaven 
must be adverbials. \_8ee § 47, Phrases, 1, a.'] 

(6) Some prepositional phrases follow substantive words, 
and serve as attributes. [See § 45, Phrases, 1.] 

(c) Numerous prepositional phrases follow verbs, verbal 
nouns, and attributive words, and serve as adverbials. Of 
these many examples have already been classified, \_8ee § 47, 

2. (a) Certain verbs, adjectives, and complements are 
more or less appropriately followed by certain prepositions, 
and to some extent the prefixes of compound words indicate 
the prepositions that should follow. [See § 38.] 

(6) But no strict rules of sequence can be given here ; 
for variations are found in the writings of our best authors. 
It is in this place especially true that extensive reading is our 
best way of studying syntax. [See § 13.] 

Eight uses of prepositions denoting relations of place are noticeable as 
fine traits in the writings of our best English poets. 

(c) In prepositional sequences, as elsewhere, the mutability 
of our language is shown. In old literature there are several 
phrases that have become obsolete. 

3. (a) Prepositions govern dependent nouns and pronouns. 
ISee § 13.J 

Let any word, a, require that another word, b, shall have a certain use 
in a sentence, then it is said that ' a governs b.' [See § 43.] 

Dependent nouns have no change of form. Among pro- 
nouns there are seven having oblique case-forms, which must 
be employed when the pronouns are governed : — me, us, thee, 
him, her, them, whom. The vague words sometimes called t 
' indefinite pronouns ' include the following, which may follow -l 
prepositions : — 









naught {or nought) 






aught (or ought) 


The following pronominal forms may serve either as sub- 
jects, or as objects, or as dependent words governed by pre- 
positions: — you (and ye in M.E.), it^ this, these, that, those, 
which, and the compounds myself, himself, ourselves, etc. 

The following forms denote subjects, and cannot serve 
as dependent pronouns : — I, thou, he, she, we, they, who. 

After save and hut, which as subordinative conjunctions in E.II. = except, 
the subject-forms of pronouns occur frequently in M.E. 

The term dependent indicates that the words to which it applies are 
not subjects and are not objects. In many grammars we find the following 
rule : — ' Prepositions and transitive verbs govern substantives in the objec- 
tive case.' It seems advisable to set aside a name so vaguely employed. 
[See § 47, Phrases, 1, a,] We have a possessive case in ^Milton's poetry.' 
When we say ' the poetry of Milton,' the attributive phrase is a poor sub- 
stitute for the case. [See § 46, Words, 3.] 

(Z)) The relative is not governed by the preposition that 
governs the antecedent. In many sentences the preposition 
is placed at the end, especially where a dependent relative is 
omitted and where that is the relative. After verbs of ' giving,' 
' lending,' ' sending,' 'telling,' and * showing ' prepositions are 
often omitted. 

The nouns and pronouns immediately following these verbs are, in 
their uses, equivalent to dative cases, and among the pronouns him, them, 
and whom are historically dative forms, but since Chaucer's time they have 
served also as objects. 

(c) A noun-clause is sometimes made dependent on a 
word called a preposition. The particle hut has often the 
force of except, and is treated as a conjunction. The noun- 
clause, taken together with the particle, serves as an adver- 

This construction is as old as Chaucer's time. 

(d) Prepositions may follow adverbs, and in many in- 
stances words serving as prepositions may serve also as 

(e) Repetitions of prepositions give emphasis and distinc- 
tion to dependent words. 

Similar uses belong to repetitions of articles and conjunctions, especially 
iff places where repetition is not usu^. 


syntax: examples. 

(/) Before the relative whom several writers have em- 
ployed the word than, as if it was a preposition. 

"With reference to history and to general usage, than is a conjunction, 
and conjunctions do not govern words ; but the sequence than whom has 
been described as well established by usage. It is bad if than is taken as 
a conjunction. 

Examples. — 1. (a) The following examples show that in Latin, as in 
E.I., either cases or phrases may in meaning be equivalent to phrases in 

In heaven [xp] warps on a mass 
of waters [ap] ; 

clouds collected oiit of the dee'p 

conglomerate a storm [foul] with 
black showers [xp] ; 

hollow rivers swell with roaring 

the sea boils with reeking friths 

We wonder at the beauty [xp] 
of the sun [a]. 

She cried with a loud voice [xp]. 
If one go beyond the wood [xpj. 


Caelo venit agmen aquarum ; 

nubes conlectae ex alto 

glomerant tempestatem imbribus 
atris ; 

cava flumina crescunt cum sonitu ; 

aequor ieT:'VQt fretis spirantibus. 

We wundria'S >aBS wlitan 
J>8Bre sunnan. 

Heo clypode micelre stefne. 
Gif man geond wudu gonge. 

(b) Among the examples those followed by Gr are, like the rest, selected 
from good authors. ' One would fain outlive his trial at law.' — ^Bisnop 
Hall. * The difference between good and bad is infinite.* [The preposi- 
tion is a compound of twain = two.] ' The Life of Pope by Eoscoe.' — Gr. 

* Hunting is a game /or princes.' — Iz. Walton. ' It is high time /or me to 
be gone.' — Abdison. ' Their passion for war was extreme.' — Kobertson. 

* Night is the time for rest,' — J. Montgomery. ' Canute could not fail of 
meeting with adulation /ro?7i Aes courtiers.' — Htjme. 'So should desert m 
arms be crowned.' — Dryden. ' Their incursi(>ijs into the empire began in 
the fourth century.' — Eobbrtson. ' There is nothing so delightful as the 
hearing of truth.' — Addison. ' Miles of ruined tombs' — Dickens. * This 
sway over other souls. ' A sight to dream of.' ' You have more intercourse 
with the Germans' — Gr. 

(c) ^Across his brow his hand he drew.' — Scott. 'Against thee have 
I sinned.' — Bible. ' With eyes shut against the rain's driving.' — R. Brown- 
ing. ' Timotheus placed amid the tuneful quire.' — Dryden. * Some fell 
among thorns' — Bible. ''Twas at the royal feast [cp].' — Dryden. 'Nor 
do we start at his awful name.' — Cowper. ' How bowed the woods beneath 
their sturdy stroke .' ' — Gray. ' There the black gibbet glooms beside the 
way.' — Goldsmith. ' A shot passed between Nelson and Hardy.' — Sotjthkt. 
*Yet shall he mount .... beyond the limits of a vulgar fate.' — Gray. 
' We are unregarded by the world.' * Notybr this faint I.' ' If he ask /or 
bread.' ' His bowed head seemed listening .... for some comfort.' ' He 
sailed /or Canada.' ' A man's a man for all that.' ' In thee have I trusted.' 
' He closed his eyes in endless night.' ' Yet in my heart I feel your might.' 



* He arrived off Cadiz ^ ' On her dulcimer she played.' ' He on honey-dew liath 
fed.' ' May I but meet thee on that peaceful shore ! ' ' We almost seem passed 
to another sphered ' In vain to me the smiling mornings shine.' ' To the last 
gasp will I stand.' ' These pastoral farms, green to the very door.' ' I again 
repose under this dark sycamore.' ' I called upon the Lord.' ' He did fly 
upon the tuings of the wind.' 'Soothed with the sound, the king grew vain.' 
' With thee conversing, we forget all time, and toil, and care.' — G. ' The 
valleys also are covered over with com.' — Bible. ' Timotheus .... with 
flying fingers touched the lyre.' — Dbyden. 'Do not burden them with 
taxes' — BuBKE. ' These cliflfs .... connect the landscape with the sky.' 
— ^WoRDSWOBTH. ' Not a setting beam could glow Within the dark ravines 
below.' — Scott. 

* Abide with me when night is nigh. 
For without Thee I dare not die.' — Keble. 

2. (a) In these examples prefixes and prepositions agree in their mean- 
ings. A word is hardly required to say that the meanings given below are 
not exclusive. [See § 38.] 

a, ab, abs = from, which follows ' abstain,' ' abstract,' and ' av^rt.' 
ad = to, which follows ' adhere,' ' accMe,' and ' attract.' 
con = with, which follows • compare,' ' converse,' and * contend.* 
dig = from, which may follow ' depart,' ' differ,' and * dissent.' 
in (with a verb) = in, which may follow ' engage,' ' include, and 
' indulge.' 

re = back ; hnt from often follows 'recMe,' * receive,' and ' retire.' 
se = apart ; but from mostly follows ' secede,* ' select,' and ' separate.' 
(b) Several variations of sequences are here placed in contrast. These 
sequences are all found in good authors, but for the sake of brevity the con- 
text is not always given entirely in this place, 

' He adheres to the principles of 
that sect. He will accede to your 


request. We agree to that.' 
' Form my soul averse /row sin.' 

*We concur with the writer. 
Here we shall not contend with 
him. We have pleasure in comply- 
ing with your request. We confided 
our property to his care.' 

' The town is six miles distant 
from Durham. The adjective is in 
this respect different from the verb. 
He was disappointed of his reward. 
Let it be fairly divided between the 
two claimants.' 

•There are some exceptions to 
the rule. He was then made exempt 
from service. They escaped out of 
the prison.' 

' We must insist upon this point. 
They indulged themselves in all 
Mftds of pleasures. It was included 
in our last request.* 

' The means were well adapted 
for that end. You are well ac- 
quainted vnth the facts. On that 
point we agree vnth the author.' 

' My feeling is averse to this inno- 

'/n that opinion they all con- 
curred. We must contend for this 
principle. He has to contend against 
great valour. We at that time had 
confidence in his integrity.' 

' He is still discontented with his 
lot. They differ tuith you on several 
points. He was disappointed in his 
bargain. Let the square be divided 
into two triangles.' 

• He took exception at this badge. 
He took exception against one of the 
jury. They escaped /row their foes.' 

* He was initiated into half a 
dozen clubs. They are too indulgent 

^to their children. It was inclosed 
with my note.' 


syntax: examples. 

*He is incapable of treachery. 
"We are uncertain of success. He is 
independent of our aid.' 

' He returned from France. It 
was received from your clerk. He 
has still some regard for his own 
reputation. They still remained in 

'He was left unaided hy his 
friends. He is inexpert in that art. 
For you that is impracticable.' 

' He returned to England. He was 
reduced to despair. It is replete with 
learning. With regard to his own 
interests he is careful enough. The 
sentinel remained at his post.' 

(c) 'Alle .... mide [with] him wereon.' — Latamon. 'He felle on 
-Mandeville. ' Chyldren \>\x\> [are] compelled for to leue [leave] 
here oune longage.' — John of Teevisa. ' He expounyde to his disciplis 
alle thingis on-sidis hond [by himself — i.e. apart].' — Wycliffe. ' Four of 
the clock it was. . . . Many a draught of wyn had he drawe [smuggled] 
from Burdeux ward. . . . His study was but litel on [of] the Bible.' — 
Chauceb. * She restrained her appetite till [to] one meal of fish.' — Bishop 
FisHEB. ' I take my course to sea ward.' — Turbervile. ' I fall on weeping.' 
— Lady Jane G-bey. ' You will never live to my age without [unless] you 
keep yourself in breath with exercise.' — Sydney. ' Their inquiries must 
of force [needs] have been of a far other kind.' — Bacon. ' All this is 'long 
of you. ... A merrier man .... I never spent an hour's talk withal.' — 
Shakespeare. ' Expend after [according to] your purse.' — Bishop Hall. 
•Thy thoughts which are to us-ward. . . . Such trust have we through 
Christ to God-ward. . . . For the edifying of the body.' — Bible. [The last 
is an example of numerous old phrases in which the verbal noun preceded 
by the is followed by of § 48, Phrases.] ' We have no moral right on 
the reputation of other men.' — Dbyden. ' A man of polite imagination 
is let into a great many pleasures.' — Addison. ' One would expect, after 
entering through the porch, to be let into the hall.' — Pope. 

3. (a) Dative cases and all substantive words made dependent on ex- 
pressed prepositions are set in Italic. ' If ye will truste to my counseil, 1 
schal restore you [ = to you] your doughter, and I will doon [dp] you [ = for 
you] so moche that ye schul have honour inthxs cause. . . . Yet thar [need] 
ye not accomplise thilke same ordinaunce, but [except] you [= to you] like 
[ = it be pleasing]. . . . Ye schul schape you [o] to th.a,t entent tha.t 'He 
give [ = may give] you [ = to you] counseil.' — Chaucer, Tale of Melibeus. 
[Here ye is always the subject; you, in one place an object, serves in four 
places as a dative ease.] ' All things were created by him and for him ; 
and he is before all things, and by him, all things consist. And he is the 
head of the body, the church. ... Of him, and through him, and to him, 
are all things ; to whom be glory. . . . When I departed from Macedonia, 
no church communicated with me concerning giving and receiving, but ye 
only,' — Bible. ' There is none other that fighteth for us, but only Thou.' — 
Eng. Service. * Nothing this wide universe I call, save thott, my rose.' — 
Shakespeare. ' Who flatters is of all mankind the lowest, save him who 
courts flattery.' — H. More. [The sequences of ' save ' and ' but ' here and 
there imply doubts respecting their uses. Each may be taken as an im- 
peratiA^e in a clause.] ' He is now in the house. He rises very early ; 
indeed, he sometimes gets up at five o'clock in the mjomihg,' ' He has gone 
into the field.' — Gr. 

{b) ' Deliver me from them that [s] hate me. . . . Give to him that [s] 
asketh thee, and from him that [s] would borrow of thee turn not thou away.' 
— Bible. ' Thou knowest not what colour jet is of — Shakespeaee. ' Sunday 
he esteems a day a to make merry in.' — Eaele. ' There's a single field 


which I hare looked wpon' — Wordsworth. ' Thy deep ravines and dells 
among' — Scott. ' "Which box did you send for 1 ' ' The place a we arrived 
at was a deserted village.' 'Here is the porter that the box was given to.' 
— G. ' I am possessed of that is mine. [Here that = what.] ... * Who 
do you speak to ? ' — Shakespeare. [To whom ; the error is not a rare in- 
stance.] ' Give A him a crown.' ' Send a me word.' * Tell A us the 
story.' * Show A me your work.' — G. 

(c) * That oon [one] myghte not see, but [= except] it were with thilke 
[those] yen [eyes] of his mynde, with whiche men seen, whan that they 
ben blynde.' — Chattcer. ' Except these abide in the ship ye cannot be 
saved.' — Bible. ' The mission of science is, to destroy ignorance . ... ac- 
cording to the [maxim] " Felix qui potuit rerum cognoscere causas " of the 
poet.' — J. H. Newman. [The verse quoted here would of itself be de- 
scribed as a sentence. But the prepositional phrase according to and the 
verse appended, taken together, make an adverbial-phrase relating to the 
verbal form destroy.] 

(d) 'They came out of their houses.' ' Up to the sky she gazed.' — G. 
' Englishmen .... looking downwards to the earth.' — Wordsworth. 
' For the bringing under of these rebels.'— Spenser. ' I am a man more 
sinned against than sinning.' — Shakespeare. * Guilt brings down the 
thunder.' — Akensidb. *Many a holy text around she strews.' — Gray. 
' The tale is hushed up.' ' Sand has filled up the ruins.' ' He thought 
nothing too mean to pick up.' 'Your science is not much to boast of ' I 
will not be laughed at.' — G. [The particles should be taken with the verbal 
forms to which they are appended. These particles, though clearly used 
here to modify the meanings of verbal forms, have been called ' preposi- 
tions.' They are surely adverbials if there is truth in the saying, ' All 
things are as is their use.'] 

{e) ' Unto the Jews I became as a Jew . ... to them that are under 
the law as [one] under the law . ... to them that are without law as 
[one] without law . ... to the weak became I as [one] weak. ... I am 
made all things to all men.' — Bible. ' In all time of our tribulation ; in all 
time of our wealth ; in the hour of death, and in the day of judgment 
.... deliver us.' — Eng. Service. 

(/) ' Belial came last, than whom a spirit more lewd Fell not from 
heaven.' — Milton. ' A most enchanting wizard did [there] abide. Than 
whom a fiend Tnore fell is nowhere found.' — Thomson. ' We have now 
named the most extraordinary individual of his time, one certainly than 
whom none ever better sustained the judicial office ; one than whom none 
ever descended from the forum into the senate with more extraordinary 
powers of argumentation.' — Brougham. [The sequence than whom is bad 
English, if than is taken as a conjunction. The controversial notions of 
several grammarians are appended.] 

' Who, having reference to no verb or preposition understood, but only 
to its antecedent, when it follows than, is always in the objective case.' — 
Bishop Lowth. [Here the bishop's own English is bad. He means to say 
that the phrase than whom is correct.] 

' " Than whom." It is a very common parliament-liouse phrase, and, 
therefore, presumptively corrupt.' — Cobbett. 

' Than is followed by the objective case of the relative ; as, "a man 
than whom I never saw a better." ' — Morell. 

' Some maintain that than is [here] followed by the objective case of 
• • 

362 syntax; examples. 

the relative. If this view be allowed, than must be regarded [here] as a 
preposition.' — Angits. 

' When Milton wrote than whom he was probably thinking of the Latin 
ablative placed with a comparative, as in the following sentence : — " Sol 
.... possis nihil urhe Boma visere maim." ' — Gr. 


Conjunctions are chiefly used to connect sentences and 
clauses. The words strictly called conjunctions have been 
noticed [§ 14]. Besides these, there are others — relative 
pronouns and adverbs — to which connective uses belong. 
These are mostly called connectives. It is commonly said 
there are three kinds of sentences — simple, complex, and 
compound [§ 43]. 

The complex sentence contains at least one clause, and the clause is 
often called ' a subordinate sentence.' The compound sentence, or period, 
must contain at least two co-ordinate sentences, and may contain several 
clauses. "When each of its main divisions contains a clause or several 
clauses, the whole should be described as a period. There are five or 
six meanings given to the word sentence. It will be convenient here to use 
^e viovdi ^period as a term applicable to any compound sentence. 


Observations. — 1. And may connect two words making a 
compound subject or object ; two adjectives belonging to one 
noun, or making a complement ; two verbs correspondent in 
form and having one subject ; two adverbials defining one 
word ; or two substantives dependent on one preposition. 

No other conjunction has these uses. With cannot serve as a substi- 
tute for and. Where and connects words, grammarians often explain 
away the fact by a theory. It is noticed in connection with the appended 

2. Where three or more words make a compound subject, 
and is usually placed only before the last. Where and is 
omitted, the word all or these may serve to collect the terms 
making a subject. Where these are set in pairs, to show like- 
ness or contrast, and is repeated. 

3. And connects phrases having attributive, adverbial, and 
substantive uses. Where the phrases include verbal forms, 
and are taken together to form a subject or an object, aiid 
should connect correspondent verbal forms. 

Where the subject is a series of phrases the verb is mostly singular. 
[See § 46, Verbs in Concord with Phrases, 4.] 


Examples.— 1. ' " You and I will travel together." Many grammarians 
insist that, in cases of this kind, we are to regard the sentence as a contrac- 
tion of two sentences joined by and. This explanation might do very well 
for such a sentence as '■^John and William are eleven years old " — that is, 
" John is eleven years old, and "William is eleven years old " — but it is 
simply absurd when applied to such a sentence as " Two and three make 
five," or " He and / are of the same age ; " '• Blue and yellow make green." 
— C. P. Mason. ' The fury of the Russians and the obstinacy of the Turks 
made the conflict dreadful.' * In this painting lights and shades are well 
blended.' ' He has blended well the lights and the shades in this painting.' 
* He sells good books and bad books.' ' He is a faithful and industrious ser- 
vant.' * The sky is blu^ and clear.' ' The wheat looks strong and healthy.' — 
Gr. ' There lives and works a Soul in all things.' — Cowper. * He lives and 
reigns [not reignethi for ever.' ' They acted cautiously and wisely.' — Gr. 

' Late and soon^ 
Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers.' — "Wobdsworth. 

* Our science itseK is but a mixture of light and shade' — G. * In all 
things approving ourselves .... hj honour and dishonour, by evil report 
and good report.' — Bible. * ' He with his brothers are able to do much.' — 
CoBBBTT. [Here with does not serve well for and. The writer defends the 
syntax here exemplified.] 

2. 'A simple bed, an arm-chair by its side, and a tiny -washing-table, 
with a small white basin on it and a sponge, is all the furniture.' — Gr. 
H. Lewes. [The two parts of the sentence connected by is are like the two 
sides of an equation.] 

* The sceptre, learning, physic, must 
All follow this, and come to dust.' — Shakespeake. 

' The crafty and the easy, the wise and the foolish, the rich and the poor, 
shall all appear.' — Jee. Tatloe. 

* Oh Life I without thy checkered scene 
Of right and wrong, of weal and woe, 
Success and failure, could a ground 
For magnanimity be found ? ' — Woedsworth. 

3. ' The armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left. . . . 
In returning and rest shall ye be saved ; in quietness and in confidence shall 
be your strength. ... In the evening, and morning, and at noon-day will 
I pray.' — Bible. 'For a man to write well there are .... required, to 
real the best authors, observe the best speakers, and mu^h exercise of his 
own style.' — Ben Jonson. [Here the ordinary noun exercise is awkwardly 
linked with two verbal nouns, each having the infinitive form.] ' To be a 
well-favoured man is the gift of fortune ; but to write and read comes by 
nature.' — Shakespbarb. [^See § 46, Phrases, 3, 4.] 


Observations. — 1. For conjunctive and subordinative uses of 
particles Old English had many forms, especially compounds, 
that have become obsolete, and others of which vestiges remain 
iifinodeni literature. Among thl latter the forms most notice- 


able are tliose which show the extensive employment of tliat 
— a particle that in E.II. might serve to introduce a clause of 
almost any kind. Alone, or aided bj another particle, that 
served to link numerous clauses severally denoting antece- 
dence, duration, consequence, concession, causality, and finality. 

2. Words serving as links of clauses in Modern English 
may be divided into two classes, the first (a) including rela- 
tive pronouns and adverbs, the second (h) including wordp 
more strictly called conjunctions — as, because, except, if, lest, 
though, unless, while, and that when it introduces a o'ubstan- 
tive-clause or an adverbial-clause. But in several respects 
all the words used as links of clauses are like one another. 
Each refers to some element not contained within the clause 
itself. This element is a substantive word when the clause is 
attributive. In other instances reference may be made to a 
predicative verb, or to a vague verb taken with its comple- 
ment ; but there are examples where the clause is related to 
the verb taken together with an adverbial or with an object. 
[Bee § 47, Glauses, 1, a.] 

The link shows that the clause itself is intended to serve 
as a noun, or as an adjective, or as an adverb. Each link may 
connect together a main sentence and a clause ; elements 
having distinct relations, and verbs differing in mood, or in 
tense, or in both. In these respects clause-links are all unlike 
the conjunction and. Their special uses have been shown in 
numerous examples of clauses serving respectively as nouns, 
as adjectives, and as adverbs. 

NouN-CiATJSES, employed as subjects and as objects, have for their con- 
nectives how, that, what, when, where, whether, which, who, and why. 
[§§ 44 and 48, Clauses.l 

Attbibutive-Clatjses have for their connections how, that, when, 
whence, where, wherefore, wherein, who, whom, whose, and why. [§ 46, 

Adyerbial-Clatjses have for their connectives after, albeit [old], 
although, an or and [old = «/], as [with several distinct uses], because, 
before, except, if, lest, since, than, that, the [as employed in themore], though, 
unless, when, where, whether, while. [§ 47, Clauses.] 

3. The conjunction and may connect together two clauses, 
when they belong to one class, and have a common relation. 
When placed before a relative, and should introduce the 
second of two attributive clauses. And should not be em- 
ployed to link a clause with a phrase. 

4. The particle as, employed in clauses as well as in 
phrases, has uses remarkably various. It occurs often in ad- 
verbial-phrases of reference [' as to,' 'as regards '] ; in others 


it points to the manner, or to the result of an act [' He acted 
so as to win praise '] ; in others it points to some reason 
founded on the capacity of an agent [' Let me, as an older 
man, advise you ']. In some clauses as, placed after such, 
serves instead of who. In many elliptical clauses of compari- 
son as refers to some word not expressed in the clause, but 
corresponding to a word employed in the main sentence. 
Ellipsis often suggests errors in grammar, and these are 
rather numerous in clauses introduced by a conjunctive as 
following an adverbial use of the same particle and denoting 

5. Clauses of comparison introduced by than are mostly 
elliptical, and here again ellipsis often suggests errors in 
grammar. Than, as placed here and there, looks like a pre- 

' Than whom.'* This exceptional sequence has been noticed. 
[§ 49, Sequences, 3,/.] 

Examples. — 1. ' pat [ = So that] at the last l^ai ordeind tuelue [twelve].' 
— Cursor Mundi. ' Wkils that the peple of Israel passeden the see.' — 
Mandeville, ' Sith that 1 have told yow .... Whan that dame Pru- 
dence saugh hire tyme. . . . Though that ye han sworn.' — Taleof Melibeus. 
' That that I did, I was set on to do't by Sir Toby.' — Shakespeake. 'Paul, 
after that the governor had beckoned unto him to speak, answered .... 
Before that certain [men] came from James, he [Peter] did eat with the 
Gentiles. ... It was told me how that the Jews laid wait for the man. 
. . . So that they fled out of the house. . . . Until that an offering should 
be offered for every one of them.' — Bible. 

2. Verbs differing in mood or in tense are set in Italic. * I give thee 
charge that thou keep this commandment.' — Bible. ' It is thought [that] 
he perished by poison.' — Alq. Sydney. ' Herostratus lives that burned 
the temple of Diana.' — Sir T. Browne. ' It is not true that he said 
that.'— C. P. Mason. [See §§ 44, 45, 47, Clauses.] 

3. ' They heard that some ships had been wrecked, and that others had 
lost their anchors.' [And connects two objective clauses.] * He was a 
man who acted uprightly and [who] cared for his neighbour.' [And con- 
nects two attributive-clauses, as again in the next excerpt.] ' Our old 
friend, who had been well acquainted with our circumstances, and who 
had so far guided us, was then called away.' * * The captain, a brave 
man, and who had often risked his life, escaped without a wound.' [Omit 
and.] ' He ran as fast as he could and until his strength failed.' [And con- 
nects two adverbial-phrases ] * ' I find in my neighbour a man always 
acting honestly and who minds his own business.' [Place ' who ' next to 
* man ; ' for ' acting' writes acts.] 

4. Words that have been omitted are here and there placed within 
brackets. * Is [His] folc flowe [fled] . . . . as hii were agaste [terrified].' 
— Robert OF Gloucester. 'The king it wiste, and als-so faste As he 
which was of hih prudence.' — Gower. ' Forasmoche as I se your humility, 
i^ constreigneth me to do yow grace.' — Tale of Melibeus. 'His thoughts 
are as just, as those of Horace [are jAt].' — Dryden. 'They clung about 

366 syntax: examples. 

him as captives [cling] about their redeemer.' — Bitbke. * The French 
forces left Scotland as much to their own satisfaction as to that of the 
nation.' — Eobertson. ' He is as tall as I am [tall]. . . . When I was a 
child I spake as a child [speaks].' — C. P. Mason. * The ruby is not 
as hard as the diamond [is hard].' ' He is not as strong as you [are 
strong].' • You are as good a player as he [is a good player].' ' He paid 
you as well as [he paid] me.' 'It affects your own interests as much 
as [it affects] mine.' ' Henry likes work as well as [he likes] play.' — Gr. 

* * The nations, not so blest as thee [art blest], 

Must in their turn to tyrants fall.' — Thomson. [?] 

5. As before, words that have been omitted are here and there placed 
within brackets. * Thaim [To them] war leuer [it were more welcome] than 
al this werd [world].' — Metrical Homilies. ' pat kenne)> [teaches] >e in 
herte, for to loue ]?i louerd leure [more dearly] \>en >i-selueii.' — Langland. 
* A heart dearer than Plutus' mine [is dear], richer than gold [is rich]. . . . 
If thou cut'st more than [is] a just pound .... thou diest.' — Shake- 
speare. ' I understand more ^Aa7» the ancients [understand], ... I had 
rather speak five words with my understanding tkaji ten thousand words 
in an unknown tongue.' — Bible. 'He is taller than I am [tall]. ... He 
is more industrious than [he is] clever.' — C. P. Mason. ' He helps you 
more than [he helps] me.' ' He can help you more than I can help you.' — 
G. * ' You are a greater loser than me.' [There is no word, expressed or 
understood, to govern me. Say .... than I am.] 

co-oedhstatiye conjunctions. 

Observations. 1. — It lias been shown tliat relative pronouns 
and adverbs serve largely as connective words of which the nses 
are subordinative. (cl) There are certain particles called co-ordi- 
native conjunctions — and, hut, or, nor, and a few others noticed 
already. [§ 14.] 

(h) Of two co-ordinate sentences each may be simple or 
each may be complex. [§ 43, pp. 235, 243.] 

(c) In many co-ordinate sentences the conjunctions that 
might be employed are omitted. The two sentences may have 
the same subject, or the same verb. In these cases ellipsis 
often occurs. [§ 65.] Sometimes the subject and the verb 
are alike in both, and may be omitted in the second sentence. 

2. (a) The verbs in co-ordinate sentences connected by 
and mostly correspond with each other in mood, and often in 

(&) But and sometimes connects sentences of which the 
verbs differ from each other in mood, or in tense, or in both. 

(c) Where the verbs in sentences connected by and differ 
in mood, or in tense, or in both, and where the assertions 
made by two verbs are strongly contrasted, their common 
subject may well be repeated, or an equivalent subject may 
be employed. 


3. The chief nses of co-ordinative conjunctions have been 
noticed. [§14.] A few special observations are here 

(a) But — in this respect like for and nor — is often placed 
next to a full stop and at the beginning of a principal 

(b) Or sometimes connects two names of one thing. 
Where or connects words of different meanings, either may- 
precede the first. Where the two words are nouns, an article 
may be repeated. 

(c) In M.E./or [= because] is in some places subordina- 
tive, just as /or alone, and several phrases including for are 
subordinative in E.II. In other places /or is co-ordinative, 
and comes next to a full stop (a). 

In E.I. ealswd (also) is a conjunctive adverb. In M.E. also sometimes 
serves instead of and, and translates the German auch ( = E.II. ek), but not 
the German also ( = consequently). 

In some grammars several adverbial expressions are classified with con- 
junctions strictly so called. These are specimens: — besides, however, more- 
over, nevertheless, and therefore, 

4. (a) The following conjunctions employed in pairs are 
called correlatives : — hoth .... and ; either . . . . or ; or 
. ... or (in verse) ; neither .... nor ; nor .... nor (in 
verse). These are co-ordinative. 

(fe) Contrasted adverbs have here and there subordina- 
tive uses, in other respects like those of the conjunctions 
called correlatives. In many places where correlative par- 
ticles are employed, one introduces a subordinate sentence or 
clause, the other a principal sentence. In other places each 
introduces a subordinate sentence or clause. 

Examples. 1. — (a) 'Mercy and truth preserve the king, and his throne 
is upholden by mercy. . . . The lips of the righteous feed many ; but fools 
die for want of wisdom.' — Bible. [Co-ordinate sentences like these are 
numerous in the Book of Proverbs.] 

(6) • Every day will I bless thee ; and I will praise thy name for ever 
and ever.' — Bible. ' This world seems a desert, when we see in it only 
mountains, rivers, and towns ; btct when we know that here and there we 
have friends who, though distant and silent, are caring for us, this world is 
for us like a home in the midst of a garden.' — G. 

(c) ' Many talk of friendship ; few understand its essential conditions.' 
' For many readers the "Odyssey " is a romance ; Horace found in it a series 
of moral lessons.' — G. ' Read, not to contradict and confute, nor to believe 
and take for granted, nor to find talk and discourse ; but [read] to weigh 
and consider.' — Bacon. 

2. {a) I looked into the book, and saw its merit.' — Johnson. 'All 
ffis excellences, like those of Natufc herself, are thrown out together; 

368 syntax: examples. 

and, instead of interfering with, support and recommend each other.'—' 

(h) ' Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance. . . . 
The Lord hath sworn, and will not repent. . . . Thy brother was dead, and 
is alive again ; was lost, and is found.' — Bible. ' Before that time my green- 
house will not be ready, and it is the only pleasant room belonging to ns. 
I line it with mats, and spread the floor with mats, and there you shall sit 
with a bed of mignonette at your side.' — Cowper. 

(c) ' He has been penitent ; he has confessed his fault ; and now [he] 
shall be forgiven.' — Gr. ^A waTJ may be rich by chance ; but no one can 
be good, or rise, without effort.' — Angus. 

3. (a) ' For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made 
alive. But every man in his own order [shall be quickened].' — Bihle. * You 
see those several people [as described by Plutarch], in their difierent laws, 
and policies, and forms of government ; in their warriors, and senators, and 
demagogues. Nor are the ornaments of poetry, and the illustrations of simi- 
litudes, forgotten by him.' — Drtden. 

(b) * In the sentence " We know him," the last word is the object, or 
word directly governed.' ' The form " him" must be either an object, or a 
word governed by a preposition.' ' Achilles must either subdue his anger, or 
must see the Greek army defeated.' 'Providence may either avert the evil, 
or turn it to our advantage.' ' Take that which you prefer— the book or the 
picture.' — Gr. 

(c) ' So willesfol [wilful] he was, and al for [ = because] in the o>er 
bataile him vel [befell] so vair cas [such fair luck].' — Robert of Glouces- 
ter. 'Our first duty is to elect leaders, /<?r [= because] without order 
no good thing can be done.' — G. ' As ye are partakers of the sufferings, 
so shall ye be also of the consolation. For we would not, brethren, hav^ 
you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia.' — Bible. 

4. {a) ' pe poure [poor] ba [both] and riche comen her toforen [before] 
him.' — Legend of St. Katherine. ' I am a debtor, both to the Greeks and 
to the Barbarians. . . . Either make the tree good, and his fruit good ; or 
else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt.' — Bible. * You regard 
neither the letter nor the spirit of the law.' — Angus. 

(b) 'He not only cautioned you, but also repeated the caution.' — G. 
* Though he slay me [xc], yet will I trust in him [p]. . . . J[s far as the east is 
from the west [xc], so far hath he removed our transgressions from us [p].' 
—Bible, '^sthe tree falls [xc], so it lies [p].' — G. ' He is so feeble [p] 
as to be unable to walk [xc].' — Angus. 'I cannot say whether he will 
come [oc], or not [oc, contracted].' — G. ' Whether it be I [xc] or they [xc], 
so ye believed.' — Bible. 


The places of the forms more or less strictly called 
interjections — each consisting of a vowel, or of an isolated 
word — are partly prescribed by usage ; but in other re- 
spects these forms are not affected by any rules of syntax. 

Ohservations. — 1. (a) Besides the forms strictly called in- 
terjections, others may be isolated so as to serve as interjections. 


A noun or a pronoun, representing a vocative case in Latin, is 
often placed with an interjection ; but in many places the noun 
is employed alone, or with an adjective. 

(fe) Where an interjection apparently governs a pronoun, 
it is sometimes understood that a preposition has been omitted, 
or that the sequence of the two words is prescribed by usage, 
as in ' Ah me ! ' 

2. (a.) In many elliptical sentences their exclamatory 
tones are denoted, partly by initial interjections, and partly 
by means of punctuation. Where their verbs are imperative, 
short and elliptical sentences are sometimes called ' inter- 

(h) In complete sentences, where all the parts have their 
usual order, grief, surprise, irony, indignation, or invoca- 
tion may be denoted by a final note of exclamation, which 
thus serves instead of an initial interjection. 

(c) By the same means, an exclamatory tone may be 
given to a complete sentence in which the order of the words 
is interrogative. It is thus indicated that no answer is ex- 
pected. Generally speaking, the uses of interjections are to 
a large extent superseded by means of punctuation. 

3. The sources of numerous ' interjections ' (so called) are 
adverbial. The expletive expressions here referred to belong 
especially to our dramatic literature, and in conversation 
are mostly obsolete. They consisted at first of adverbial- 
phrases employed with a notion of strengthening forms of 
assertion and denial. These phrases, by means of common 
abuse, lost their first meanings, while, to disguise their 
irreverence, their original forms were purposely contracted, 
or were otherwise greatly altered. Thus they passed over 
into a class of almost meaningless words sometimes called 
' interjections.' [§ 15.] 

Examples.— \. (a) * Ea la [=Ah, or Alas], ]>t min sunu.' — JElfbic. 
' Hayt [ = Gee], stot [horse] ! '— Chattcbr. ' ho! we have escaped. . . . 
My youngest [daughter] has a very pretty manner of telling fortunes upon 
the cards. Fudge!' — Goldsmith. 'Pshaw, beauty! we don't mind that. 
... I am the man .... "homo sum" [Terence], hem! .... What day 
of the month was it ? . . . . The first of April. Umph ! ' — Colman. 
' He roundly asserts that you have not the slightest invention. ... I am 
diverted ; ha, ha, ha ! Not the least invention ! ha, ha, ha ! ' — Sheridan. 
•Cheerly, cheerly, my hearts! yare [ = briskly], yare .' ' — Shakespkare. 
^ Eh ! haw! what! Captain, did you write the letter then?' — Sheridan. 
'Heyday, freedom! freedom! .... Fury, Fury! there, Tyrant, there! 
hark, hark ! '— Shakespbark, Tempest, Act iv. Sc. i. [• Fury ' and ' Tyrant* 
are here names of hounds.] '0 Friend! I know not which way I must 
lool*for comfort. ... Cuckoo ! .... blessed bird ! .... blithe 

B B 

370 syntax: examples. 

New-comer ! ' — Wordswoeth. ' I have done nothing but in care of thee — 
of thee, my dear one ! . . . . Give us kind keepers, heavens ! * — Shake- 
speare. 'Ollapod! that sounds like an ancient name.' — Colman. 'Long- 
favoured England ! be not thou misled.' — Wordsworth. 

(b) ' Wo me [ = to me] bi-tyde [happen] ! ' — Langland. ' Oh, woe [be 
to] the day ! . . . . Ah me ! ' — Shakespeare. ' dear me ! ' — Gr. 

2. (a) '0 for a dirge ! . . . . Oh, what a wreck ! ' — Worbsworth. 
* Still the same burning sun ! no cloud in heaven ! .... for the plover's 
pleasant cry, to tell of water near ! for the camel-driver's song ! ' — 
SouTHEY. ' Lullaby [ = Gro to sleep], my wanton Will ! ' — Gascoiqne. 
' Avaunt, Sir Doctor Deuyas ! ' — Skelton. * Woe worth [be] the day [ = 
to the day] ! ' — Scott. ' Avaunt ! — Shakespeare. ' On, to lona ! ' — Words- 
worth. On ! Stanley, on .' ' — Scott, ' Adieu .' ' [ = 2b God I commend 
you]. . . . ' Good-Vye!' [ = God be with you.] 

(6) * They parted — ne'er to meet again ! ' — Coleridge. * Hope gives 
his feeble limbs a sudden strength ; he hurries on ! ' — Southey. * Common 
sense is so prosaic ! ' — G. H. Lewes. [The tone here indicated by the note 
of exclamation is ironical.] 

(c) 'How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle! .... 
How doth the city sit solitary that was full of people ! how is she become 
as a widow ! ' — Bible. ' Ah, why [should we] deceive ourselves ! ' — Wobds- 

3, 'Ye have i-nough, 'pardy [ = par Dieu\ !' — Chatjcbb. [This ex- 
ample may indicate the way in which many adverbials of asseveration by 
frequent misuse assumed interjectional forms, or were purposely disguised. 
So 'marry r (in Shakespeare) disguises the ' Seinte Marie T of an earlier 
time, and ' by'rlakin ! ' a contracted diminutive (also found in Shakespeare), 
serves instead of the phrase ' by our Lady ! ' The forms 'gad! ' and ' egad!' 
with too many others like them, disguised a Name often profanely used, 
while in ' 'sdeath/' as in several like forms, nothing was left of that Name 
save the s' of its possessive case. See The Pardoneres Tale in Chatjcbb, 
and the Persones Tale, edited by Fubnivail.] 

syntax: rules. 371 


It has been shown, in the observations and examples 
already given, that our sentences have numerous varieties 
of structure of which little can be told in the form of 
concise rules. Among the rules of syntax one is usually 
expressed in terms like these : — ' The verb agrees with 
the subject in number and person.' The rule itself is 
readily understood, and where it is not formally known is 
mostly obeyed. But, as we have noticed, there are many 
apparent exceptions, and these are not as well understood 
as the rule. Here, then, as in other instances, the chief 
use of the rule is to direct attention to certain formal 
anomalies ; in other words, the references appended will 
be found more useful than the rule itself, which — left 
alone — might, in many cases, leave room for doubt, or 
might lead to error. It should be remembered that 
rules and facts rarely or never agree together exactly. 

It has been noticed in several preceding sections [44-51] 
that numbers of paragraphs containing examples corre- 
spond with numbers prefixed to paragraphs consisting of 
observations. The rules that follow are arranged in an 
order corresponding with that of the sections above 
referred to, and at the end of each rule references are 
given to the observations and examples on which the rule 
is founded. 

It will be noticed that the same figures and Italic letters that refer 
to observations refer also to corresponding examples. 


In every sentence, as in every clause, the subject must 
be made clear. 

§ 44, Words, 2, 4, 6 ; Phrases, 3 ; Clauses, 3. 

As far as their forms allow, pronouns show their agree- 
ment in gender, number, and case with the nouns to 
which they relate. 

•§ 44, Words, 4, 5. • 

B B 2 

372 syntax: rules. 

The relative pronoun, by means of its position, repre- 
sents the number and the person of its antecedent. 

§ 46, Special Observations, 8. 

In apposition, nouns and pronouns differing in their 
numbers may be placed together. 

§ 44, Words, 3 ; § 46, Special Observations, 7. 

The pronoun it may refer to a preceding noun, or may 
introduce a subject of any kind — a noim, singular or 
plural; or several nouns ; a subject-phrase, or a subject- 

§ 44, Words, 4 ; Phrases, 3 ; Clauses, 3 : § 46, Concords, 2. 


An adjective may be placed either in attributive or in 
predicative relation to a substantive word. Adjective 
forms serve often as complements, and often as adverbs. 

§ 45, Words, 1 ; § 46, Complements, Words; § 47, Words, 1, b, c. 

The comparative adjective refers mostly to two indi- 
viduals, or to two classes ; the superlative to several in 
one class, or in one series. 

§ 45, Words, 4. 

A noun set in apposition with another, or a noun in' 
the possessive case, may serve as an attribute. 

§ 45, Words, 2, 3. 

The possessive case, denoting possession — also denoting 
duration — should mostly be used where the governed noun 
is the name of a person. 

§ 45, Words, 3. 

Several vague words, serving often as substantives,., 
serve also as adjectives. 

§ 44, Words, 5 ; § 45, Words, 5. 

The — a weakened demonstrative, in meaning cognate 
with that and those — may limit or define the use of a 
noun ; or may show that two nouns connected by a par- 

syntax: rules. 373 

tide are the names of two different things, or that an ad- 
jective form is employed as a plural noun. The often 
precedes collective nouns, names of rivers, and plural 
names of families. 
§ 45, Words, 7. 

Among verbal forms serving as attributes some are 
often placed before nouns ; others are rarely or never so 

§ 46, Words, 8. 

A phrase employed as an attribute relates to the sub- 
stantive word immediately preceding. 

§ 45, Phrases, 3. 

A clause employed as an attribute relates to a sub- 
stantive word immediately or nearly preceding the con- 

§ 45, Clauses, 5. 

In many places the relatives which and who are connec- 
tive, but are not definitive. That, more closely connective, 
serves, in many places, to define the antecedent. Where 
and it or and he might take the place of the connective, 
and where the antecedent is already well defined, that is 
not required. "Where which or who might leave a doubt 
as to the meaning of the antecedent, that is strictly 

§ 45, Clauses, 2, 3, 4. 

55. VERBS. 

' The verb agrees with the subject in nmnber and per- 
son.' Where no suffix limits the verb, its concord is un- 
derstood — not expressed. Where there is a form to show 
concord, that form is employed, as in ' He writes,^ 

§ 46, Concords, 1, 2. 

In speaking of one, the verb is singular, though the 
subject may look like a plural ; in speaking of two or 
TYiore^ the verb is plural. Many apparent errors are ex- 
amples of good grammar. 

^ 46, Concords, 2 ; Special Observa^ns, 9. 


Where they are each preceded by eachf or by every, or by 
wo, two singular nouns connected by and require a singular 
verb. Two singular nouns connected by or — ^like those con- 
nected by nor — require a singular verb. 

§ 46, Concords, 2 ; Special Observations, 5, 9. 

A collective noun may denote union or plurality. In 
many instances the concord required ie not shown by the 
form of the subject. 

§ 46, Special Observations, 2, 3, 4, 9. 

In certain sentences shortened by ellipses, nouns and 
pronouns differing in number and person are apparently 
made the subjects of one common verb. 

§ 46, Special Observations, 6 ; § 65, Ellipses. 

Where the subject is a relative pronoun, the number 
and the person of the verb are shown by reference to the 

§ 46, Special Observations, 8. 

A single noun-phrase, or a noun-clause, employed as a 
subject, requires a singular verb. Two or several phrases, 
or several clauses, are followed mostly by a singular verb, 
but sometimes by a plural. 

§ 46, Phrases, 1-6 ; Clauses, 1-4. 

Verbs connected by and correspond with each other in 
mood, and often in tense. Where they differ in tense, 
their common subject may be repeated. 

§ 46 ; § 60, Co-ordinative Conjunctions, 2, a, h, c. 

In asking questions, inversions of order are still re- 
tained where the verbs are those called auxiliary and 
irregular. In the Imperative Mood the subject follows 
the verb, or is understood — not expressed. Subjunctive 
meanings are often denoted by inversions. 

§ 46, Moods, 2, 3 ; § 58 ; § 46, Moods, 4, d. 

In the third person singular of the Present the follow- 
ing verbs have no final S : — can, shall, will, may, ought, must, 
and dare (intransitive). 

§ 46, Special Observations, 1. 

syntax: rules. 375 

The Tenses mostly follow one another, so as to repre- 
sent a progressive or a retrogressive order of time ; but the 
Present has several peculiar uses. 

§ 46, Tenses, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. 

In denoting intentions and results, such verbs as come, 
fear, hope, and trust, when employed in the Present, are 
followed by may and will, and when employed in the 
Past are followed by might and would ; or in both tenses 
they may be followed by the infinitive form of which to write 
is an example. But ought, in the Past, must be followed 
by a phrase like to have written* 
§ 46, Tenses, 1,2; § 25, ought. 

When the result of an act, rather than the act itself, 
is denoted, the Present of the abstract verb may serve in- 
stead of have in the Perfect, and the Past of the abstract 
verb may serve instead of had in the Pluperfect. 

§ 46, Tenses, S,b; 4, a. 

Shall, in the Future, may sometimes denote authority, 
or compulsion, or an inevitable sequence of cause and 

§ 46, Tenses, 5, a ; CompleTnents, Words, 3. 


The complements of intransitive verbs are mostly placed 
next to their verbs. 

§ 46, Complements, Words, 4. 

The complements of mahe and other transitive verbs 
of similar meaning mostly follow objects. 

§ 46, Complements, Words, 6. 

Several participles often employed as complements 
are vague in their meanings, and are, therefore, followed 
by secondary complements consisting of phrases. 

§ 46, Complements, Phrases, 2. 

Clauses sometimes serve as complements. 

• § 46, Complements, Clatises. • 

376 syntax: kules. 


Adjective forms often serve as adverbs in prose. In 
verse adverbial uses of adjective forms are established by 
common usage. 

§ 12, Forms ; § 47, Words, 1, b, c. 

In Modern English two negative adverbs, relating to 
one verb, are not allowed. Double forms of negation — 
like double forms of comparison — are allowed in Old 

§ 47, Words, 2, c ; § 12, Forms ; § 19, E.I., E.II. 

As regards their positions, adverbials are the most 
versatile elements of sentences. A simple adverb may 
begin a sentence, or, with emphatic force, may imme- 
diately precede a verb. More usually the adverb imme- 
diately follows the verb, or comes between the verb and its 
complement. Lastly, the adverb may follow the object. 
But in many instances the adverb must be placed close to 
the word defined, or made emphatic. 

§ 47, Words, 3, a, h, c. 

In many examples adverbials consisting of phrases 
have the places already assigned to simple adverbs. 

§ 47, Phrases, 3, a, h, c. 

The beginning of the sentence, and the end, are suitable 
places for adverbials consisting of clauses. 

§ 47, Clauses, 3, a,b, c. 


Constructions of words and inversions of order called 
subjunctive are sometimes employed in adverbial-clauses 
of condition and supposition ; also in expressions of wishes, 
fears, and purposes. 

§ 47, Clauses, 1, b; 2, b; Concession, Condition. 

The general aim of subjunctive constructions and in- 
versions is to express thoughts, doubts, and suppositions 


syntax: rules. ' 377 

in such a way as to avoid modes of speaking usually em- 
ployed in making assertions. 
§ 23 ; § 46, Moods, 4, a, d,f. 

Subjunctive modes of expression may follow if, lest, 
that, and several other conjunctions, but it is not to be 
understood that these particles must be followed by 
subjunctive constructions. There is prevalent in our 
modem literature a general tendency to neglect these 

§ 46, Moods, 4, a, h. 

The forms could, should, would, and might may be 
employed with a subjunctive meaning, without reference 
to a past time. 
§ 46, Moods, 4, e. 

Here and there one of the verbs could, would, had, 
Tnight, and were begins a subjunctive clause, in which the 
usual order of words is inverted, and had, without inver- 
sion, is sometimes employed as equivalent to should have. 

§ 46, Moods, 4, d. 


Transitive verbs and verbal forms are followed by sub- 
stantive words directly governed and called objects, or by 
phrases and clauses serving as objects. When pronouns 
are employed as objects, their oblique forms serve, as in 
the places where they follow prepositions — me, us, thee, 
him,, her, them, whom. 

§ 18, Pronouns, M.E. ; § 48, Words, 2, a, b, c; Phrases, 1, 2; 
Clauses, 1, 2. 

In M.E. verbal forms in ing that in E.II. were fol- 
lowed by prepositional phrases are often followed by ob- 
jects, or words directly governed. 

§ 48, Phrases, 2, a. 

The relative pronoun is not governed by the transitive 
verb that governs the antecedent. 

» § 46, Special Observations, 8 ; § ^, Words, 2, d. 

378 syntax: rules. 

Where the relative pronoun, if inserted, would be 
directly governed, it is often omitted, especially in con- 

§ 45, Clauses, 1. 

Where a phrase or a clause is the object, its use is not 
shown by any change of form. 

§ 48, Phrases, 1, 2 ; Clauses, 1, 2. 

The object usually follows the verb, but relative and 
interrogative pronouns precede their governing verbs. 

§ 48, Words, 2, c, d. 

Short adverbial expressions often precede and often 
follow objects ; but the more expanded forms of adverbials 
mostly follow. 

§ 47, Words, 3, b ; Phrases, 3, c; Clauses, 3, c : § 48, Clauses, 3, a. 

Some verbs usually called intransitive are here and 
there followed by nouns and pronouns serving as objects^ 
Some verbs usually called transitive are here and there 
employed as intransitive verbs. 

§ 46, Verbs, 2 ; § 11, Verbs ; § 48, Objects. 

In E.II., and in modern verse, verbs denoting reflex 
actions are often followed by simple forms of pronouns ; 
but in modern literature such compound forms as himself 
and yourselves are mostly substituted. 

§ 11, Verbs; § 18, Pronouns, E.L ; § 46, Verbs, 2. 

Infinitive forms, followed by words directly or in- 
directly governed, serve often to make objective phrases. 
§ 48, Phrases, 1, a, b, c. - 


After verbs of ' giving,' ' lending,' ' bringing,' ' sending,' 
' telling,' and ' showing ' nouns without change of form have 
the chief use of the Dative in Latin, or of nouns following 
to in English. Placed in the same sequence, personal 
pronouns have their oblique forms — me, us, thee, him, heVy 
and them. 

syntax: rules. 379^ 

By several grammarians the nouns and pronouns here noticed are defined 
as ' indirect objects,' or as ' Dative objects.' § 46, Complements, Words, 5 ; 
§ 48, Words, I, c, e; § 49, Sequences, 3, b. 

In E.II. and in modern verse oblique forms of pro- 
nouns, having the use of the Dative, often precede certain 
impersonal verbs. 

§ 46, Verbs, 2. 

In our older literature the oblique forms me and him 
[ = for me and for him'] follow verbs in some places 
where the pronouns seem almost expletive. They have 
here one of the uses of the Dative in Latin. 

§ 18, Pronouns, M.E. ; § 46, Verbs, 2. 

Oblique forms of pronouns follow lihe^ near, and some 
words of cognate meaning, and have one of the uses of the 
Dative, as in ' He is like him.' 

* Oh for breath to utter what is like thee! ' — Shakespeare. [§ 9, Pro- 


Prepositions are placed before substantive words, 
and serve to form phrases — some employed as attributes ; 
others, more numerous, employed as adverbials. Preposi- 
tions are, therefore, particles employed in changing the 
uses of substantive words. 

§ 7, E. ; § 13, Uses ; § 45, Phrases; § 47, Phrases; § 49, 1, a, b, c. 

The relations indicated by means of prepositions are 
so various that they cannot be defined without the aid of 
an extensive series of examples. 

§ 13, Uses; § 45, Phrases, 1 ; § 46, Complements, Phrases, 1, 2 : §47, 
Phrases, 1, a, b; 2, a, b, c : § 48, Phrases, 2, a, b: § 49, Sequences, 1, a; 
2, a, b, c. 

Prepositions are followed by nouns without a change 
of form, but pronouns show, as far as their forms avail, 
their dependence on preposi ions. The same forms that 
serve as objects, and as Dative cases, serve also when pro- 
nouns are governed by prepositions — me, us, thee, himy 
• her, and them, • 

§ 18, Pronouns, E.I., M.E.; § 48, Words, 2, c ; § 49, Sequences, 3, c. 

380 syntax: eules. 

TKe relative pronoun is not governed by the preposi- 
tion that governs the antecedent. The governed relative 
is often omitted. It should be inserted where it serves 
to introduce some additional fact respecting the ante- 

§ 46, Special Observations, 8 ; § 48, Words, 2, d; § 49, Seqitences, 3, b. 

Dative uses of pronouns are denoted by their oblique 
forms, without the aid of a preposition ; but whom follows 
to or for, where a Dative use is denoted. 

§ 18, Pronouns, M.E. ; § 49, Sequences, 3, b. 

In questions — especially in familiar conversation — 
the preposition is often placed at the end of a sentence. 

§ 49, Sequences, 3, b. 

The relative and definitive pronoun that does not follow 
a preposition. In places where that, if inserted, would 
be dependent, it is often omitted, and the preposition is 
placed at the end of the clause. 

§ 49, Sequences, 3, b. 

In verse the preposition often follows the dependent 

§ 49, Sequences, 3, b. 

Eepetitions of prepositions give emphasis and distinc- 
tion to dependent words. 

§ 49, Seqv£nces, 3, e. 

A preposition may govern a phrase and make an 
alteration in its use. 
§ 48, Phrases, 2, a, b. 

A preposition sometimes governs a clause and makes 
an alteration in its use. 
§ 49, Sequences, 3, c. 

Instead of the particles called prepositions, certain 
phrases are often employed, and these phrases, taken 
together with their dependent words, serve to form various 

§ 43 (p. 231), Various Adverbial-Phrases. 

syntax: rules. 381 

Particles often employed as prepositions may serve as 
adverbs ; or may be appended to verbs, and serve as com- 
plements that alter the meanings of verbs. 
§ 46, Verbs, 2; § 49, Sequences, 3, d. 


No other conjunction has all the uses of and. Neither 
the preposition with nor the phrase as well as can serve 
as a substitute for and, 

§ 46, Special Observations, 10: § 60, 'And,' 1, 2, 3; Subordinative Con- 
junctions, 3; Co-ordinative Conjunctions, 2, a, b, c. 

Subordinative conjunctions and other connective 
words link together elements having distinct relations 
in complex sentences, and connect verbs differing from 
each other in mood, or in tense, or in both. 

§ 14-, Subordinative Conjunctions ; § 50, Subordinative Conjunctions, 2. 

In E.II. that is often employed after other connective 
words, and serves in forming clauses having severally the 
uses of nouns, adjectives, and adverbs. That, in our older 
literature, is sometimes equivalent in force to that ivhich, 
and accordingly may then follow a preposition. 

§ 49, Sequences, 3, 6; § 60, Subordinative Conjunctions, 1. 

Co-ordinative conjunctions connect together elements 
having the same relation in compound sentences, or 

§ 14, Co-ordinative Conjunctions: § 50, Co-ordinative Conjunctions, 1, 
a, b, c; 2, a, b, c. 

Or often connects two names of one thing. Where 
or connects wcrds, phrases, or clauses, distinct in their 
meanings, it may be preceded by the collateral form 
either. The same rule applies to like uses of the forms 
neither and nor, 

§ 14, Co-ordinative Conjunctions; § 60, Co-ordinative Conjunctions, 3, b. 

But — a form having imrious uses — is in one respect 
like for and nor, as it may be placed next to a full stop. 

382 SYNTAX. 

But, as employed in some places, is in meaning equivalent 
to that .... not. 

§ 9, Relative Pronouns; § 14, Various Uses (p. 61); § 60, Co-ordinative 
Conjunctions, 3, a, h, c. 

In elliptical clauses of comparison as and than are 
followed by oblique forms of pronouns wbere verbs are 
omitted that, if inserted, would precede the pronouns. 

§ 50, Sabordinative Conjunctions, 4, 5. 

Conjunctions do not govern words ; but the sequence 
' than whom ' is found in several authors. 
§ 49, Seqtiences, 3,/ 


Interjections do not govern words ; but there are 
elliptical modes of expression in which words called inter- 
jections are followed by oblique forms of pronouns. 
§ 51, 1, b. 


Tabular forms of analysis serve to make clear the 
structure of sentences, and afford considerable aid in the 
study of English Composition. 

As regards clearness, writing English is an easy art, of 
which the main rules are these three : — 

1. Let the niiraber of the principal sentences, as compared 
with the number of their subordinate phrases and clauses, be 
proportionately large. 

2. Shun the use of phrases considerably enlarged by con- 
nection with phrases holding a lower place in subordination. 
[§ 45, Phrases, 5.] 

3. Place adjuncts so that their relations to primary ele- 
ments may be clear. 

Two or three examples of an involved style may be given ; but the sen- 
tences analysed in this section are for the most part those of which the 
structure is ordinary. Each of the three kinds of sentences respectively 
called Simple, Complex, and Compound may be divided into two or three 
varieties, and a knowledge of these will lead to the acquirement of facility 
4n writing English. [§ 43, pp. 238-42, 260, 265-66.] 



Observations. — A. It has been noticed that every sentence 
inclndes a subject and a verb, and that whera the verb is 
transitive an object follows. These are the primary elements, 
and, when compared with these, the others are called subor- 
dinate. When an adjunct is placed in relation with a primary 
element, that adjunct is subordinate in the first degree. To 
the adjunct so placed anoth,er may be appended, and thus 
made subordinate in the second degree. [§ 45, Phrases, 5.] 
One chief aim of analysis \_A] is to show the union of the 
parts employed in making a sentence. Each adjunct is, 
therefore, defined as one placed in relation with one of the 
primary elements, w^hile those adjuncts holding secondary or 
lower places in subordination are not separately defined. 
Adverbials and attributes are thus often tahen together as parts 
forming one adjunct, of which the character is shown by its 
relation to one of the primary elements. The name of the 
phrase has reference to its use. 

' All things are as is their use.' 

B. In another and a more minute method of analysis the 
distinct uses of the adjuncts having secondary and lower de- 
grees of subordination are noticed. The former mode of 
analysis {A) shows union ; the latter (B) shows how one ad- 
junct may be divided into two or several parts. This latter 
process must lead at last to the minute or verbal analysis 
called 'parsing.' [§61.] Here it will bo especially shown 
how an adverbial-phrase may be followed by an attributive, 
so that both, taken together, make a more expanded adver- 
bial-phrase [-B]. 

6. Simple sentences may be lengthened, not only by in- 
serting the secondary adjuncts already noticed, but also by 
enlargements or repetitions of the elements called primary. 

Where in a simple sentence each element consists of one word, or of a 
short phrase, tabular forms like those denoted by A and B may be conve- 
nient, but for other simple sentences the form denoted by C may serve. 
For the uses of abbreviations see § 43, p. 220. The predicative verb [vc] 
= one word, or = a vague verb + a complement. The attribute consisting 
of one word, or of two adjectives, or of a noun placed with an article, is put 
with the subject [s] or with the object [o] ; but the attributive-phrases are 
placed with adverbials in the fourth column. Connective words ai-e set 
within curves, and words referred to are set in Italic. In the abbreviated 
form X — vc the dash = the phrase • relating to.' The second degree of sub- 
ordination is not noticed in the first^eries of examples [^]. 

Examples. — A. 1. * Sunshine brightens the streams in the 




2. ' Sunshine makes bright all the streams flowing down 
on the west of the dale,' 

3. ' The east side of the dale is darkened by the moun- 
tain's shadow.' 

4. ' Myron the sculptor placed there a beautiful statue of 

5. ' The people made the statue an idol '[i.e. they idolized 
the statue].' 

6. * Cyrus drove back the Persian soldiers stationed near 
the king.' 

7. ' The vessel was wrecked on the coast of the island.' 

s + a 



The east side 

Myron the sculp- 

The people 



makes + bright 

is + darkened 


made + an idol 

o + a 

the streams 

all the 

a beautiful 

the statue 
the Persian 


ap + X + xp 

in the dale [ap — 

flowing down on the 
west of the dale 
[ap — streams] 

of the dale [ap — 
side], by the moun- 
tain's shadow [xp 
— darkened] 

of Juno [ap — stattie], 
there [x — placed] 

back [x — drove],sta.- 
tioned near the king 
[ap — soldiers] 

7. The vessel was wrecked on the coast of the is- 

land [xp — wrecked] 

5. 1. ' The light of sunrise shines clearly over the ridge 
of the high mountain.^ 

2. ' Many streams are flowing down on the west of the 

3. ' The dale is darkened by the shadow of the mountain.'' 

4. ' The vessel was wrecked on the coast of the island.^ 

Adjuncts having a secondary degree of subordination are here set in 

Italic, as in the analyses appended. 
xp in numerous examples. 

s + a vc 

In combination xp + ap = an enlarged 

o + a 

The light 


Many streams 

are + flowing 

The dale 

is + darkened 

The vessel 

was + wrecked 

x + xp 
over the ridge [xp — shines] + 

of the high mountain [ap — 

down [x.— flowing] + on the 

west [x.'^ —flowing] + of the 

dale [ap — west] 
by the shadow [xp — darkened'\ 
+ of the mountain [ap — shadow] 
on the coast [xp — wrecked]-^ 

of the island [ap — coast] 



This rather minute plan of analysis serves to show that two phrases 
are often combined to serve as one. But the plan is not generally recom- 
mended. [§ 46, Phrases, 5 ; § 61.] The plans following the next four 
excerpts are convenient for analyses of sentences in which subjects, or 
attributes, or objects are considerably enlarged. Adjuncts having secondary 
or lower degrees of subordination are here set in Italic ; but attributes and 
adverbials are taken together in several extended phrases of which the 
uses are attributive. 

G. 1. 'The fignre, placed in statuelike repose, the hair, 
the diadem, the simple drapery — all these harmonize well with 
the expression of that majestic cov/ntenance.* — G. 

2. ' Cyrus the Great, residing seven months in one district, 
then three months in another, and then two months in a third, 
enjoyed, as regards heat and cold, a perpetual Spring.' — G. 

3. * The trim hedge, the grassplot before the door, the 
little flower-bed bordered with box, the woodbine trained up 
against the wall and hanging its blossoms around the lattice, 
the pot of flowers in the window, the holly providentially 
planted around the house, to cheat winter of its dreariness, and 
throw in a semblance of green summer to cheer the fireside — all 
these bespeak the influence of taste.' — W. Irving. 

4. ' Here, at the great annual fair, Venetian commerce 
displayed its rich stores — silks, woollen cloths, velvet, fine 
lace, golden chains, mirrors, pearls, glittering weapons, 
brooches, and jewelled bracelets.' — G. 

For the analysis of a sentence in which the subject or the attribute has 
a form considerably enlarged, the column under s + a is widened, or a 
column may be arranged under the sign ap, as in the example here ap- 

s + a ap vo x + xp 

1. The figure placed in statue 

like repose 


well [x — harmonize] 

the hair, the diadem, with the expression 

the simple drapery — of that majestic 

all these countenance [xp — 


Here the adverbial-phrase ' with the expression ' has its last word en- 
larged by the attributive-phrase 'of that majestic countenance,^ and the 
two, taken together, serve as a more expanded adverbial-phrase. See the 
examples placed under the letter B. 

8 + a 

Cyrus the Great 

ap (extended) 
residing seven months 

in one district 

then [residing] three 

months in another • 

(and) [residing] two 

months in a third 

C C 




a perpetual 


as regards 
heat and 
cold [xp 



s + a a + ap (extended) vc 

All these bespeak 

the pot of 
the holly 

the trim hedge 

the grassplot before the door 

the little flower- bordered mth 

bed box 

the woodbine trained up 

wall (and) 
hanging its 
around the 

lattice providentially/ [xp 

in the window — plant ~ 

to cheat winter of its 

planted around dreariness [same] 

the house (and) throw in 

semblance of green 
summer [same] 
to cheer the fire-side 
[ap — semblance'] 

In \hQ fourth example the object consists of the word ' stores ' followed 
by a series of nouns in apposition. 

o + a 
the influ- 
ence of 

x + xp 

s + a 
4. Venetian commerce 

vc o + a x + xp 

displayed its rich stores — Here [x — dis- 
silks, woollen playedl 
cloths, velvet, at the great an- 
fine lace, golden nual fair [xp 
chains, mirrors, — displayed'] 
pearls, glitter- 
ing weapons, 
brooches, (and) 
jewelled brace- 

The examples already given show how tabular forms may be arranged 
so as to suit several varieties of structure found among simple sentences. 
It may be added that a long series of simple sentences — each considerably 
extended, but containing only one verb — is not to be recommended. Verbs 
give clearness and vivacity to sentences. 


Observations. — A. Complex sentences, like those belonging 
to the style of ' ordinary prose,' have already been described. 
[§ 43, pp. 224, 235, 242^3, 260, 265.] Every complex sen- 
tence contains at least one principal sentence and one clause. 
The latter serves either as a noun, or as an adjective, or as an 


adverb. The examples already given are numerous. [§ 44, 
Glacises ; § 45, Glauses ; § 47, Glauses ; § 48, Glauses.'} The 
clause employed as a subject often precedes the principal 
verb, but when placed in apposition with it the clause follows. 
The clause employed as an object mostly follows the verb of 
the sentence to which the clause belongs. [§ 48, Glauses^ 3, a, 

B. The attributive-clause is placed near the substantive 
word to which it refers. [§ 45, Glauses, 6.] The adverbial- 
clause is often placed at the beginning, and often at the end, 
of the principal sentence. [§ 47, Glauses, 3, a, b, c] 

G. Where several clauses are made subordinate to one 
principal sentence, the whole of the complex sentence may be 
described as ' involved,' though its form may serve well enough 
as the natural form of expression for certain ideas. The style 
here noticed would be out of place in * ordinary prose,' though 
it may be admirable where the thought and its form of expres- 
sion are both comprehensive. 

Examples. — A. 1. ' That such a man should have written 
one of the best books in the world is strange enough.' — 

2. 'It will hardly be denied that government is a means 
for the attainment of an end.' — Macaulat. 

3. ' He has often told me that, at his coming to his estate, 
he found his parishioners very irregular.' — Addison. 

sc vc z 

1. That such a man should is + strange 
have written one of the best books 
in the world 

2. It ... . that government will + be denied 
is a means for the attainment of 
an end 

In the third example the complex sentence is divided in a way that is 
convenient where the object is a clause considerably extended. 

8 VC + X OC 

3. He 1 has often told me j (that) at his coming to his estate, he found 

I I his parishioners very irregular 

B. I. * He that is comely when old and decrepit, surely 
was very beautiful when he was young.' — South. 

2. ' The most gifted men that I have known have been 
the least addicted to depreciate either friends or foes.' — R. 

• 3. * The best work for the ^od of the world is that which 
is not done for the sake of any reward tho world can 
bestow.' — G. 

c c 2 

enough [x — strange] 
hardly [x — denied] 



In the following general analyses clauses are set apart from the prin- 
cipal sentences to which they relate. The uses of attributive and adverbial 
words and phrases are here left to be noticed in special or detailed analyses, 
of which several examples have been given. 

1 . He .... surely was very beautiful . . • [p] 

when he was young [xc — heautiful'\ 

that is comely [ac — he in p] 

when [he is] old and decrepit [xc — comely'] 

2. The most gifted men have been the least addicted to 

depreciate either friends or foes . . . . [p] 

that I have known [ac — Tneti] 

3. The best work for the good of the world is that . [p] 
which is not done for the sake of any reward . . . [ac — thafl 
the world can bestow [ac — reward'] 

G. ' It is as difficult for us, who date our ignorance from 
our first being, and were still bred up with the same infirmities 
about us with which we were born, to raise our thoughts and 
imaginations to those intellectual perfections that attended 
our nature in the time of innocence, as it is [difficult] for a 
peasant bred up in the obscurities of a cottage to fancy in his 
mind the unseen splendours of a court.' — South. 


The Principal Sentence and its Clauses. Relations, 

1. It .... to raise our thoughts and imagina- 
tions to those intellectual perfections .... is as 
difficult for us . . . . . . . p 

2. that attended our nature in the time of inno- 
cence &c— perfections [in l] 

3. who date our ignorance from our first being . ac — us [in 1] 

4. (and) [who] were still bred up with the same 
infirmities about us ac — us [in 1] 

6. with which we were born .... ac — infirmities [in 4] 

6. (as) it is [difficult] for a peasant, bred up in 
the obscurities of a cottage, to fancy in his mind the 

unseen splendours of a court xc — is difficult [in 1] 



s + a vc o + a x + xp 


It .... to raise 
our thoughts 
and imagina- 

is + as difficult 

to those intellectual per- 
fections [xp — raise], for 
us [x]^— difficult] 




our nature 

in the time of innocence 
[xjp— attended] 




our Igno- 

from our first being [xp — 



8 + a vc 

4. (and) [who] were + bred up 

(as) it ... . 
to fancy the 
unseen splen- 
dours of a 

were + born 
is + [difficult] 

+ a X + xp 

still [x — werebredup]with. 
the same infirmities about 
us [xp — bred up] 

with which [xp — were 

for a peasant, bred up in 
the obscurities of a cot- 
tage [XT^— difficult] 


Observations. — A. The structure of compound sentences 
has been described. [§ 43, p. 235 ; §§ 14, 60, Go-ordinative 
Conjunctions.] In numerous instances the use of a co-ordi- 
native conjunction is a matter of choice. Instead of aTid, set a 
semicolon between the two principal or independent sentences 
having meanings more or less cognate ; the two sentences are 
then called ' collateral.' A full stop might be placed between 

Examples. — ' Clouds gathered over the hiUs ; gloom was spread over the 
valley.' ' The rain came down first on the hills ; then it fell fast in the 
valley.' ' At last the sun shone again ; the rainbow appeared on the 
cloud.' In Macpherson's Ossian ' cognate ' and ' collateral ' sentences like 
these are very frequently employed. [§ 43, p. 242.] The meanings of 
these words ' cognate ' and ' collateral' may be readily shown by a contrast. 
No conjunction can be placed between the following two sentences: — 'To 
listen to flattery is a sign of weak judgment.' 'The tiger is the most for- 
midable of all the wild beasts of India.' There may indeed exist some 
natural connexion between a flatterer and a tiger, but there is found no 
logical connexion in the assertions here placed together. 

Instead of the semicolon — often placed between independent 
sentences having cognate meanings — write a7id ; the two sen- 
tences, taken together, then mal^e one * compound sentence.' 
The following are examples of ' compound ' sentences, includ- 
ing ^/irases but no clauses: — 'The rain came down first on 
the hills, and then fell fast in the valley.' 'At last the sun 
shone again, and the rainbow appeared on the cloud.' 

The co-ordinative conjunction (and or but^ for example) does 
not refer especially to any distinct word or element in either 
of the two co-ordinate sentences, but to a likeness or unlike- 
ness of meaning in each sentence taken as a whole assertion 
^d compared with the other. • 

Example. — ' A wise son will hear his father's reproof; but a scorner will 

390 SYNTAX. 

not hear reproof.' — Bible. Two assertions are here set in contrast in one 
compound sentence, with which the following complex sentence may be con- 
trasted : — ' You talk so fast that I cannot follow you.' Here that obviously 
relates to so. The union of the principal sentence and the clause, in a com- 
plex sentence, is thus made closer than the connexion of the co-ordinate 
members of a compound sentence. Etymological facts here agree partly 
with our nomenclature. Plecto witb cum means ' knit together ; ' but pono 
with cum means nothing more than ' put together.' * Composition ' and 
' compound ' are words often misused in books called ' scientific,' and in 
writing of the sentences here to be analysed ' co-ordinate ' is a better term than 
* compound.' The union denoted by a subordinative particle is indeed more 
intimate than that denoted by a co-ordinative conjunction, but the latter 
means something more than ' put together.' 

In the general analysis of a compound sentence there is 
nothing more to be done than to set apart the co-ordinate 
sentences, and to place their conjunctions within curves. Then 
each of the two or more sentences may be analysed either as 
a simple or as a complex sentence. All, therefore, that re- 
mains to be shown here is the method of setting apart the 
independent members of a compound sentence. In the first 
place sentences not containing clauses are noticed. 

In the examples appended conjunctions are set within curves. Each 
of the independent members of the compound sentence may be analysed in 
accordance with some one of the plans already described. [Examples A.] 

B. Of the two sentences joined in co-ordination one or 
both may be complex. In this case it is convenient to treat 
the whole as a ' period,' though this term is sometimes more 
strictly employed. [§ 43, pp. 235-36 ; § 50, p. 362.] 

G. It has been noticed that among modern alterations 
made in our style of writing English the most important is a 
general disuse of long and elaborate periods. But these have 
been employed by some classic modern writers whose periods 
have here and there a structure that may be called artistic. 
For the treatment of certain themes, such periods are appro- 
priate, though they would be out of place in our ordinary prose. 
[§ 43, pp. 238-43, 251-61.] 

In the examples appended [C, 1, 2, 3], their general analysis is first of 
all given. The aim is to show how a period may be divided into two 
or several members, each consisting of a complex sentence. 

Examples. — A. 1. * In this situation man has called in the 
friendly assistance of philosophy, and Heaven, seeing the in- 
capacity of that to console him, has given him the aid of re- 
ligion.' — Goldsmith. 

2. ' The snow was deep enough to have afforded them a 


reasonable excuse ; but Horatio was not to be prevailed upon 
to turn back.' — Southet. 

3. ' The breeze died away to a perfect cahn, and the sails 
hung loosely against the mast.' — Basil Hall. 

Sentences. Descriptions. 

1. a. In this situation man has called in the friendly as- 
sistance of philosophy p, co-ord. — h 

h. (and) Heaven, seeing the incapacity of that to console 

him, has given him the aid of religion p, co-ord. — a 

2. a. The snow was deep enough to have afforded a rea- 
sonable excuse p, co-ord. — h 

b. (but) Horatio was not to be prevailed upon to turn 

back P, co-ord. — a 

3. a. The breeze died away to a perfect calm . . . p, co-ord. — b 
b. (and) the sails hung loosely against the mast . . p, co-ord. — a 

B. 1. 'I have seldom answered any scurrilous lampoon 
when it was in my power to have exposed my enemies ; and, 
being naturally vindictive, have suffered in silence, and pos- 
sessed my soul in quiet.' — Dryden. 

2. ' The officers, who had hitherto concurred with Colum- 
bus in opinion and supported his authority, now took part with 
the private men ; they assembled tumultuously on the deck, 
expostulated with their commander, mingled threats with their 
expostulations, and required him instantly to tack about and 
return to Europe.' — Robertson. 

3. ' The high altar was erected on the very spot where 
Harold's standard had waved ; and the roll, deposited in the 
archives of the monastery, recorded the names of those who 
had fought with the Conqueror, and amongst whom the lands 
of broad England were divided.'— tSie F. Palgrave. 

4. ' At the usual evening hour the chapel bell began to toll, 
and Thomas Newcome's hands outside the bed feebly beat a 

5. * And just as the last bell struck, a peculiar sweet smile 
shone over his face, and he lifted up his head a little, and 
quickly said " Adsum." ' 

6. ' It was the word we used at school when names were 
called ; and lo, he whose heart was as that of a little child had 
answered to his name, and stood in the presence of the Master.' 
— Thackeray. 

In the following analyses long sentences are represented by their initial 
and their final words, divided by signs of omission. 

Sentences. ^ Descriptions. 

1. a. I have seldom answered .... 
enemies complex, co-ord. — 6, c 

392 SYNTAX. 

Sentences. Descriptions, 

h. (and) being naturally vindictive .... 

silence ........ simple, co-ord. — a, c 

c. (and) [I have] possessed my soul in quiet simple, co-ord. — a, b 

2. a. The officers .... took part with the 

private men complex, co-ord. — h, c, d, e 

b. they assembled tumultuously on the deck simple, co-ord.— a, c, d, e 

c. [they] expostulated with their com- 
mander simple, co-ord. — a, b, d, e 

d. [they] mingled threats with their ex- 
postulations simple, co-ord. — a, 6, c, e 

e. (and) [they] required him instantly to 

.... return to Europe simple, co-ord. — a, b, c, d 

3. a. The high altar was erected .... 

standard had waved complex, co-ord. — b 

b. (and) the roll .... divided . . complex, co-ord. — a 

4. a. At the usual evening hour .... 

toll simple, co-ord. — b 

b. (and) .... time .... simple, co-ord. — a 

5. a. And just as the last bell .... 

face . complex, co-ord, — b, c 

b. (and) he lifted up his head a little . simple, co-ord. — a, c 

c. (and) quickly said ' Adsum ' . . . complex, co-ord. — a, b 

6. a. It was the word .... called . . complex, co-ord. — b, o 

b. (and) lo, he . . . . had answered to his 

name complex, co-ord. — a, c 

c. (and) [he] stood in the presence of the 

Master simple, co-ord. — a, b 

0. 1. 'As tlie day begins with obscnrity and a great mix- 
ture of darliness, till bj quick and silent motions the light 
overcomes the mists and vapours of the night, and not only 
spreads its beams upon the tops of the mountains, but darts 
them into the deepest and most shady valleys ; || thus simplicity 
and integrity may at first appearing look dark and suspicious, 
till by degrees it breaks through the clouds of envy and 
detraction, and then shines with a greater glory.' — Stilling- 


The parallels set apart the main divisions of the period. 

2. ' Piety practised in solitude, like the flower that blooms 
iu the desert, may give its fragrance to the winds of heaven, 
and delight those unbodied spirits that survey the works of 
God and the actions of men ; || but it bestows no assistance 
upon earthly beings, and, however free from taints of im- 
purity, yet wants the sacred splendour of beneficence.' — 

3. ' General principles are not the less true or important 
because from their nature they elude immediate observation ; || 



they are like tlie air, which is not the less necessary because 
we neither see nor feel it, or like the secret influence which 
binds the world together, and holds the planets in their 
orbits.' — Kennedy. 

Again, long sentences are represented 
words, separated by signs of omission. 

Main Divisions. 
1. a. As the day .... valleys 

h. thus 


2. a. Piety .... men 

b. (but) it bestows .... beneficence 

3. a. General .... observation . 
h. they are like .... orbits 

by their initial and their final 


Four adverbial-clauses ; the 
first modified by the three fol- 
lowing ; the whole relating to 
look dark in 6 

Complex ; the principal verb, 
look dark, limited by the two 
following adverbial-clauses 

Complex and compound, co-ord. 

Complex and compound, co-ord. 
— a 

Complex, co-ord. — 6 

Complex and compound, co-ord. 


The whole process of analysis may be shown, as in a sum- 
mary, by giving both the general and the special analysis of 
a period. [0, 2.] It has already been divided into its two 
chief members, each containing two principal sentences. In 
the first place, the whole is divided only so far as to show 
the relations of the sentences and clauses of which a special 
analysis follows. 


Principal Sentences and Clauses. Eelations. 

1. Piety practised in solitude, hke the flower .... 

may give its fragrance to the winds of heaven . . p, co-ord. — 3, 6, 

2. that blooms in the desert ac — flower [in 1] 

3. (and) [may] delight those unbodied spirits . p, co-ord. — 1, 5, 7 

4. that survey the works of God, and the actions 

of men ac — spirits [in 3] 

6. (but) it bestows no assistance upon human beings p, co-ord. — 1, 3, 7 

6. (and), however free [it may be] from the taints 

of impurity xc— wants [in 7] 

7. [it] yet wants the sacred splendour of beneficence p, co-ord. — 1, 3, 5 




s + ap 

Piety practised 
in solitude 

(and) [it] 


(but) it 
(and) [it] 



may + give 



may + 




[may be] + 


+ a + ap 

its fragrance 

those un- 

the -works of 
God (and) 
the actions 
of men 

no assist- 

the sacred 
of benefi- 

x + xp 

like the flower [xp — ffivel, 
to the winds of heaven 
_ [xp— ^e>e] 
in the desert [xp — blooms] 

upon human beings [xp — 

however [x — free], from 
the taints of impurity 

yet [x — wants] 

It lias been sliown, in tliese tabular forms of analysis, tbat, 
in proportion as tlie elements of sentences — either those 
called complex or those called compound — are more and 
more divided, the general meaning of each sentence so 
treated becomes less and less obvious ; but we gain at the 
same time some acquaintance with various plai;is for the 
structure of sentences. 

By means of sublation and union, words are made to serve 
as parts of phrases, and these serve as elements in clauses, 
while clauses serve as the elements of the principal sentences. 
Of these two or more, including clauses, may be placed 
together as in G, 2, and may have the union of a well-con- 
structed period. 

By means of division and subdivision, we come at last to 
the minute analysis in which sentences, clauses, and phrases 
are divided into words. This last process remains to be noticed. 
[§ 61.] 


The first and easiest mode of parsing has been noticed. 
[§ 7, p. 32.] Sentences are there divided into words, and 
each word is named with regard to its use. In a more ex- 
tended method of parsing the uses of inflexions are noticed, 
and to some extent the relations denoted by putting words 
together are defined. 


In briefly defining relations, those -which belong to the things signified 
by words are often ascribed to the words themselvies. Thus an inert and 
stationary word is called a transitive yerb, because it is used to denote a 
transition of force — real or supposed. The adjective is said to limit the 
noun in the sentence, ' Only five men were there — not ten.' Prepositions 
are called relational words, because they are employed in expressing notions 
of relation, and words in which no change of form is made are described as 
governed. In these and other instances words are treated with a constant 
regard to our own meanings or intentions. Thus it is said (p. 222), * Let 
any word, a, require that another word, b, shall have a certain use ; then 
a governs b.' But, strictly meaning, it is the writer's intention that pre- 
scribes the use of the governed word. "When it is said, ' This verb governs 
this noun,' the meaning is, that the words are put together with the inten- 
tion of denoting a transitive act. In our thought we, for a moment, blend 
the verb with the act signified, and we speak of the noun as of an object 
afiected by that act. When we speak of two nouns in apposition, we do 
not refer merely to the fact that they stand close to each other, but to our 
intention in putting them together as two names of one thing. Thus our 
principle in nomenclature agrees with the saying of an old writer — ' All 
things are as is their use.' 

In many short sentences each word represents one of the 
logical elements of which a nnion forms a sentence. Bnt in 
numerous instances several words mnst be pnt together to 
make a phrase, which is employed as a noun, or as an adjec- 
tive, or as an adverb. In the former case parsing — such as 
is noticed here — may show the union of a sentence, but not 
in the latter. 

Ex. 1. 'We know the way.' Each word serves as one of the elements 
called logical. 

Ex, 2. ' We know how to win.' Here three words are taken to- 
gether to make the phrase serving as the object. 

Minute analysis of the kind here noticed affords some useful exercise in 
discrimination, but tells little of English Syntax. Parsing may be made 
more useful by extending its range, so far at least as to include some ob- 
servations on the structure and the uses of phrases. In the appended ex- 
amples several observations of this kind are added, and are set in small 
type. When the parsing of a sentence is written, abbreviations such as 
are given in an appended table will be convenient. 

For the use of beginners, a few rules of syntax are given in a condensed 
form ; but nothing is said of the exceptions — real and apparent — that have 
already been noticed in detail. 

The figure following the parsing of a word refers to one of the rules 
given in this section. 


Definitive Words used in Parsing. Abbreviations. 

A Noun may be — 

common, proper, abstract . . com., pr., abs. 

masculine, feminine, common, neuter m., f., c, n. 



Definitive Words used in Parsing, 
singular, plural, collective 
subject, object, dependent 
in apposition, in the possessive case . 
a complement, or part of an exclama- 
tion . . . 

A Pronoun may he — 
personal, possessive, relative 
interrogative, demonstrative, indefi- 
nite ...... 

of the 1st, the 2nd, or the 3rd person 
masculine, feminine, common, neuter 
singular, plural, indefinite 
subject, object, dependent 
in apposition, in the possessive case . 
may refer to an antecedent 

An Adjective may serve to define — 

quality, quantity, number 

order, possession .... 

or may he demonstrative or indefi- 
nite ...... 

positive, comparative, superlative 

may he placed in attributive or pre- 
dicative relation .... 

may serve as complement to the verb 
A Participle may he — 

imperfect or perfect .... 

and in Syntax may he defined as an 

A Verb may he (in force or meann 

intransitive, transitive, passive 

(in Conjugation) Old or 'New . 

(in Mood) indicative, imperative, sub- 
junctive ..... 

(in Tense) present, past, perfect, plu- 
perfect • . . . . 

(in Tense) in the 1st or the 2nd 
future tense .... 

(in Numher) singular or plural. 

(in Person) of the 1st, the 2nd, or 
the Srd ..... 

(in Syntax) must agree in number 
and person with the subject 

s., pL, col. 
sub., ob., dep. 
in app., poss. c. 

comp., exc. 

per., poss., rel. 

?, dem., indef. 

1st p., 2nd p., 3rd p. 

m., f., c, n. 

s., pi., indef. 

sub., ob., dep. 

in app., poss. c. 

ref. to antec. 

qual., quan., num. 
ord., poss. 

dem., indef. 

pos., comp., super. 

in att. r., in pr. r. 
comp. to the verb 

imperf ., perf. 

intrans., trans., pass. 
0., N. 

indie, imper., subj. 

pr., past, perf., plu. 

1st R, 2nd F. 
s., pi. 

1st p., 2nd p., 3rd p. 

agr. w. sub. 



D^niiive Words tised in Parsing. 
An Adverbial may serve to de- 
fine a verb with respect to — 
place, time, degree, canse, mode 

An Adverb of quality may be — 
positive, comparative, superlative 

An Adverbial may serve to define — 
a verb, an adjective, or an adverb 

A Preposition may govern — 
a noun, or a pronoun, or a phrase ; 
comparatively rarely a clause 
The government of the Preposition 

is namedin par sing the dependent 

noun or pronoun, 

A Conjunction (co-ordinative) may 
connect the sentence with the 
sentence . . . . . 

A Conjunction (subordinative) may 
connect the clause with the word 

And may connect — 
the sentence. . . .with the sentence .... 
the clause .... with the clause .... 
the phrase .... with the phrase .... 
the word .... with the word 


p., t., d., c, m. 
pos., comp., super, 
def. v., adj., or adv. 

gov.n., or pron., or phr. 



con. . . . w. word 

con. . . . w. . . . (jQive 
the first and the last 
w&rd of each sentence 
or clause; but write 
out the phrase) 
One Conjunction may be— 
correlative with another . . . corr. w. . , . 

An Interjection has rarely any gram- 
matical relation. 


1. The subject is placed so that its use is shown. This 
is especially noticed as regards pronouns. As far as their 
forms allow, and as regards gender, number, and person, pro- 
nouns should agree with the nouns for which they stand. 

2. Adjectives enlarge or define the meanings of nouns. 
Some verbal forms used as adjectives are placed before nouns ; 
others are rarely so placed. In many sentences adjectives 
serve as the complements of verbs. 

8. The verb agrees with the subject in number and person. 
Where a relative is the subjict, the number and person of the 
verb are shown by the antecedent. 

398 SYNTAX. 

4. Transitive verbs and verbal forms govern nouns and 
pronouns serving as objects. The relative is not governed 
by the verb that governs the antecedent. 

5. Prepositions denote relations, and govern dependent 
nouns and pronouns. The relative is not governed by the 
preposition that governs the antecedent. 

6. Adverbs define the meanings of verbs, and those of 
attributive words. 

7. Phrases and clauses have the uses of nouns, adjectives, 
and adverbs. Some prepositional phrases serve as adjectives ; 
many serve as adverbs. 

8. Conjunctions are chiefly used to connect sentences and 


' The light of sunrise shines clearly over the ridge of the 
high mountain, and brightens the rippling streams that flow 
down into the valley. They glitter in the radiance of the 
morning.' [§ 7.] 

The adjective, demonstrative; defines or limits ^ light.' 


light noun, common, neuter, singular ; the subject in 

concord with ''shines.'' — 1 ; 3. 

of preposition ; denotes the relation of ' sunrise ' and 

' light,' and governs * sunrise.'' — 5. 

sunrise a dependent noun, common, neuter, singular ; go- 
verned by ' of.' — 5. 

*0/sMwme,' a prepositional phrase, serving as an adjective to define • light* 


verb, intransitive, old, fifth class [Pr. ' shines,' P. 
' shone,' P.P. ' shone '], indicative, present, sin- 
gular, third person; agrees with the subject 
'light:— ^. 

clearly adverb ; defines the meaning of * shines.' — 6. 

over preposition ; denotes the relation of ' ridge ' and 

' shines' and governs 'ridge.' — 5. 

the adjective, demonstrative ; defines or limits ' ridge.' 


ridge a dependent noun, common, neuter, singular ; go- 

verned by * over.' — 5. 

' Over the ridge: a prepositional phrase, serving as an adverb to define 
as to place the meaning of ' shines.'' — 6. 



of preposition ; denotes the relation of * ridge ' and 

^ mountain,^ and governs ^mountam.* — 5. 

the adjective, demonstrative ; defines or limits ' moun- 

tain.^ — 2. 

high adjective of quality, positive ; enlarges the meaning 

of ' mountain.^ — 2. 

mountain a dependent noun, common, neuter, singular ; go- 
verned by ' o/.' — 5. 

* Of the high mountain,' a prepositional phrase, serving as an adjective to 
enlarge or delBne ' ridge.' In a less analytical treatment of phrases, two 
are taken together, thus : — * over the ridge ' + ' of the high mountain.' 
Here the former phrase shows the use of both. When collected they form 
one expanded adverbial element. Strictly speaking, the noun * ridge ' in 
the former phrase is defined by the whole of the latter. The whole of the 
compound adverbial serves to define the meaning of * shines.' — 7. 

conjunction; connects the first principal sentence 
[' The light .... mountain '] with the second 
principal sentence [' the light brightens .... 
streams^]. — 8. 
[ * light '] the subject ; omitted in the text. [§ 65, Ellipses.'] 
brightens verb, transitive, new, indicative, present, singular, 
third person ; agrees with ' light ' [the subject 
here understood]. — 3. 
the adjective, demonstrative ; defines or limits ' streams.^ 

verbal adjective of quality ; enlarges the meaning 

of ' streams.^ — 2. 
noun, common, neuter, plural ; governed by 

* brightens.^ — 4. 
pronoun, relative, serving to connect with the ante- 
cedent, ' streams,^ the adjective-clause, ' that flow 

down i/nto the valley.' — 4 ; 7. 
verb, intransitive, new, indicative, present, plural, 

third person ; agrees with * that.' — 3 ; 4. 
adverb ; defines as to place the meaning of ^flow.' — 6. 
preposition ; denotes the relation of * valley ' and 

floWj' and governs ^valley.' — 5. 
adjective, demonstrative ; defines or limits ' valley.' 

noun, common, neuter, singular; governed by 

^ into.' — 6. 

' Into the valley' a prepositional phrase, serving to define as to place the 
meaning of '/ow.' — 6. • 

* That flow down into the valley,' an attributive-clause, serving as an 
adjective to define ' streams' the object in the preceding sentence.— 7. 








400 SYNTAX. 

They pronoun, personal, plural, third person ; the subject 

in concord with ^glitter.'' — 3. 

glitter verb, intransitive, new, indicative, present, plural, 
third person ; agrees with * they.'' — 3. 

m preposition ; denotes the relation of * radiance ' and 

* glitter,^ and governs ' radiance.'' — 6. 

the adjective, demonstrative; defines or limits ^ radi- 

ance. '' — 2. 

raddance a dependent noun, common, neuter, singular ; go- 
verned by ' in.' — 5. 

' In the radiance,' a prepositional phrase, serving as an adverb to defin e 
the meaning of 'glitter.' — 7. 

of preposition ; denotes the relation of ' morning ' and 

^ radiance j' and governs 'morning.' — 5. 

the adjective, demonstrative ; defines or limits * morn;- 


morning a dependent noun, common, neuter, singular ; go- 
verned by ' of.' — 6. 

' Of the morning,' a prepositional phrase, serving to define * radiance.' 
In a less analytical treatment of phrases two are taken together, thus : — 
' in the radiance ' + ' of the morning.' Thus collected they form an ex- 
panded or compound adverbial, which serves to define the meaning of 
'glitter.' — 7. 


To some extent the structure of sentences is shown by 
the points called stops ; chiefly by three — the full stop, 
the comma, and the semicolon. Punctuation is not a 
science. Rules must here leave some room for freedom, 
especially in books where the style is familiar. It is 
convenient to treat distinctly of the stops required in 
the three kinds of sentences — simple, complex, and 
compound. The punctuation of various long sentences, 
and of the complex and compound sentences strictly 
called ' periods/ is also noticed. 


1. A full stop is set at the end of the sentence. In the next 
sentence sequence may be indicated by a word [hut, for ex- 
ample] or by a phrase [as to that], and sometimes an almost 
expletive word [however'] is inserted, so that the sentence is 


not left without some sign of sequence. Bat it is understood 
that the two sentences divided by a full stop have no gram- 
matical union. A semicolon often serves instead of a full 
stop, where several short and independent sentences make a 
a series. 

The poor child ' has learned to go to market ; it chaflfers ; it haggles ; 
it envies ; it murmurs ; it is knowing, acute, sharpened ; it never prattles.' 
— Lamb. 

Here the genial author makes his own style as ' helpless ' 
as his subject. Again, where full stops are inserted, the style 
may be appropriate — however simple — as in the following 
sentences, where the form is good enough for the theme : — 

' Till eleven he worked without interruption. A cup of chocolate was 
then brought, and he resumed work till one. At two he dined. . . . His 
appetite was immense. . . . Puddings, sweets, and cakes were always wel- 
come.' — G. H.