Page images
PDF
EPUB

Other nouns in y add s only: as, day, days ; valley, valleys. So likewise proper names in y are sometiines varied; as, Tlenry, the llenrys.

Obs. 3.—The following nouns in f, change f into v, and add es, for the plural; sheaf, leaf, loaf, beef, thief, calf, halt, elf, shelf, self, wolf, wharf : as, sheaves, leaves, &c. Life, lives, knife, knives , wife, wives, are similar. Staf' makes staves : though the compounds of staff are regular; as, flagstaff, flagstaffs. The greater number of nouns in f and fe, are regular; as, fifes, strifes, chiefs, griefs, gults, &c.

OBS! 4.-The following are still more irregular: man, men ; woman, women; child, children ; brother, brethren (or brothers) ; foot, feet; ox, oxen; tooth, teeth ; goose, geese ; louse, lice ; mouse, mice; die, dice; penny, pence; Dies, stamps, and penniés, coins, are regular.

OBS. 5.--Many foreign nouns retain their original plural : as, arcanum, arcana; datum, data ; erratum, errata ; effluvium, effluvia; medium, media [or mediums] ; minutia, minutiæ ; stratum, strata'; stamen, stamina ; genus, genera; genius, genii [geniuses, for men of wit]; magus, magi ; radius, radii; appendix, appendices for appendixes) ; calx, calces ; index, indices (or indexes)? vortex, vortices ; axis, aces ; basis, bases ; crisis, crises ; thesis, theses ; antithesis, antithesés ; diæresis, diæreses ; ellipsis, ellipses ; emphasis, emphases; hypothesis, hypotheses ; metamorphosis, metamorphoses ;'automaton, automata; criterion, criteria (or criterions! ; phænomenon, phænomena ; cherub, cherubim seraph, seraphim ; beau, beaux (or beaus].

OBs. 6.-Some nouns (from the nature of the things meant) have no plural; as, gold, pride, meekness.

OBs. 7.—Proper names of individuals, strictly used as such, have no plural. But when several persons of the same name are spoken of, the noun becomes in some degree common, and admits the plural form and an article ; as, The Stuarts,—T'he Cæsars : so likewise when such nouns are used to denote character; as, The Aristotles, the Tullys, and the Livys.Burgh.

OBs. 8.–The proper names of nations and societies are generally plural; and, except in a direct address, they are usually construed with the definité article: as, The Greeks, --The Jesuits.

Obs. 9.-When a title is prefixed to a proper name so as to form a sort of compound, the name, and not the title, is varied to form tha plural; as, The Miss Howards,—The two Mr. Clarks. But a title not regarded as a part of ono compound name, must be made plural, if it refer to more than one; as, Messrs. Lambert and Son,-The Lords Cálthorpe and Erskine, -The Lord's Bishops of Durham and Si. David's, -The Lords Commissioners of Justiciary.

Obs. 10.--Some nouns have no singular; as, embers, ides, oats, scissors, tongs, vespers, literati.

OBg. 11.--Some nouns are alike in both numbers; as, sheep, deer, vermin, swine, hose, means, odds, news, species, series, apparatus. The following aré sometimes construed as singular, but more frequently, and more properly, as plural: alms, amends, pains, riches; ethics, mathematics, metaphysics, optics, politics, pneumatics, and other similar names of sciences. Bellows and gallows are properly alike in both numbers ; (as, “Let a gallows be made.”. Esther, v, 14. "The bellows are burned.”—Jer., vi., 29 ;) but they have a regular plural in vulgar use. Bolus, fungus, isthmus, prospectus, and rebus, admit the regular plural.

Obs. 12.-Compounds in which the principal word is put first, vary the principal word to form the plural, and the adjunct to form the possessive case: as, Sing. father-in-law, Plur. fathers-in-law, Poss. father-in-law's, Şing.court-martial, Plur. courts-martial, Poss. court-martial's. The Possessive plural of such nouns is never used.

OBS. 13.-Compounds ending in ful, and all those in which the principal word is put last, form the plural in the same manner as other nouns; as, handfuls, spoonfuls, mouthfuls, fellow -servants, man-scrvants, outpourings, ingatherings, downsittings.

Obs. 14.-Nouns of multitude, when taken collectively, generally admit the plural form; as, meeting, meetings : but when taken distributively, they have a plural signification, without ihe form; ss, “The jury were divided."

OBs. 15.-When other parts of speech become nouns, they either want tho

plural, or form it regularly, like common nonns of the same endings; as, * Ilis affairs went on at sices and sevens."Arbuthnot. “Some mathematicians have proposed to compute by twoes ; others, by fours ; others, by twelves.- Churchill. “Three fourths, nine tenths."--Id. "Time's takings and leavings."Barton. “The yeas and nays." —Newspaper. “The ays and noes."

- Ivid. “The ins and the outs." - Ibid. "His ands and his ors," -- Mott. “One of the buts.Fowle. “In raising the mirth of stupids."~Stecle.

[ocr errors]

GENDERS. Genders, in grammar, are modifications that distin'guish objects in regard to sex.

OBS.—The different genders are founded on the natural distinction of sex in animals, and on the absence of sex in other things. In English, they belong only to nouns and pronouns; and to these they are usually applied agreeably to the order of nature. Pronouns are of the same gender as the nouns for which they stand.

There are three genders; the masculine, the feminine, and the neuter.

The masculine gender is that which denotes persons or animals of the male kind; as, man, father, king.

The feminine gender is that which denotes persons or animals of the female kind; as, woman, mother, queen.

The neuter gender is that which denotes things that are neither male nor female; as, pen, ink, paper.

Obs. 1. Some nouns are equally applicable to both sexes; as, cousin, friend, neighhour, parent, person, servant. The gender of these is usually determined by the context. To such words, some grammarians have applied the unnecessary and improper term common gender. Murrayjustly observer. “There is no such gender belonging to the language. The business e parsing, can be effectually performed without having recourse to a comms gender.” The term is more useful, and less liable to objection, as applied to the learned languages; but with us it is plainly a solecism.

OBS. 2.-Generic names, even when construed as masculine or feminine, often virtually include both sexes; as, “Ilast thou given the horse strength ? hast thou clothed his neck with thunder?”—“Doth the hawk tiy by thy wisdom, and stretch her wings toward the south ?"--Job. These have been called epicene nouns—that is, supercommon; but they are to be parsed each according to the gender of the pronoun which is put for it.

Obs. 3.–Those terms which are equally applicable to both sexes, (if they are not expressly applied to females, and those plurals which are known to include both sexes, should be called masculine'in parsing; for, in all languages, the masculine gender is considered the most worthy, and is generally employed when both sexes are included under one common term.

OBS. 4.-The sexes are distinguished in three ways:

I. By the use of different names: as, bachelor, maid ; boy, girl ; brother, sister ; buck, doe; bull, cow ; cock, hen; drake, duck; earl, countess ;

; father, mother; friar, nun; gander, goose ; hart, roe; horse, mare; husband, wife; king, queen ; lad, lass ; lord, lady ; man, woman ; master, mistress ; milter, spawner; néphew, niece; ram, ewe; sloven, slut; son, daughter ; stag, hind; steer, heifer, uncle, aunt ; wizard, witch.

II. By the use of different terminations: as, abbot, abbess ; administrator, administratrix ; adulterer, adulteress ; bridegroom, bride ; caterer, cateress; duke, duchess ; emperor, emperess or empress; executor, ececutric; governor, governess; hero, heroine ; tandyrave, lundgravine; margrave, margravine ; marquis, marchioness ; sorcerer, sorceress ; sultan, sultaness or sultana ; testutor, testatrix; tutor, tutoress or tutress ; widower, widow.

The following nouns become feminine by merely adding ess ; baron, deacon, heir, host, jew, lion, mayor, patron, peer, poet, priest, prior, prophet, shepherd, viscount.

The following nouns become feminine by rejecting the last vowel, and adding ess; actor, ambassador, arbiter, benefactor, chanter, conductor, doctor, elector, enchanter, founder, hunter, idolator, inventor, prince, protector, songster, spectator, suitor, tiger, traitor, votary.

Ill. By prefixing an attribute of distinction: as, cock-sparrow, hen-sparrow; man-servant, maid-servant ; he-goat, she-goat; male relations, female relations.

Obs. 5.- Tho names of things without life, used literally, are always of the neuter gender. But inanimate objects are often represented figuratively, as having sex. Things remarkable for power, greatness, or sublimity, are spoken of as masculine; as, the sun, time, death, sleep, fear, anger, winter, war. Things beautiful, amiable, or prolific, are spoken of as feminine; as, the moon, earth, nature, fortune, knowledge, hope, spring, peace.

Obs. 6.—Nouns of multitude, when they convey the idea of unity, or tako the plural form, are of the neuter gender; but when they convey the idea of plurality without the form, they follow the gender of the individuals that compose the assemblage.

Obs. 7.-Creatures whose sex is unknown, or unnecessary to be regarded, are generally spoken of as neuter; as, “He fired at the deer, and wounded it.”“If a man shall steal an ox or a sheep, and kill it or sell it;' &c.Exodus, xxii, 1.

CASES.

Cases, in grammar, are modifications that distinguish the relations of nouns and pronouns to other words.

OBS.—The cases are founded on the different relations under which things are represented in discourse, and from which the words acquire correspondent relations, or become dependent one on an other, according to the sense. In English, these modifications, or relations, belong only to nouns and pronouns. Pronouns are not necessarily like their antecedents, in case.

There are three cases; the nominative, the possessive, and the objective.

The nominative case is that form or state of a noun or pronoun, which usually denotes the subject of a finite verb: as, The boy runs; I run.

Ors. The subject of a finite verb is that which answers to who or what before it; as, “ The boy runs”— Who runs? The boy. Boy is therefore Lore in the nominative case.

The possessive case is that form or state of a noun or pronoun, which usually denotes the relation of property: as, The boy's hat; my hat.

Obs. 1.—The possessive case of nouns is formed, in the singular number, by adding to the nominative s preceded by an apostrophe ; and, in the plural, when the nominative ends in &, by adding an apostrophe only: as, singular, boy's ; plural, boys';-sounded alike, but written differently.

Obs. 2.-Plural nouns that do not end in 8, usually form the possessivo case in the same manner as the singular; as, man's, men's.

Obs. 3.-When the singular and the plural are alike in the nominative, the apostrophe, which (as Dr. Johnson has shown) is merely a sign of tho case, and not if elision, ought to follow the s in the plural, to distinguish it from the singular; as, sheep's, sheeps'.

Obs. 4.-The apostrophic & adds a syllable to the noun, when it will not unite with the sound in which the nominative ends; as, torch's, pronounced orchiz.

Obs. 5.—The apostrophe and 8 are sometimes added to mere characters, to denote plurality, and not the possessive case; as, Two a's—three t's—four 9’s. In the following example, they are used to give the sound of a verbal termination to words that are not properly verbs: “When a man in a solile oquy reasons with himself, and pro's and con's, and weighs all his designs," &c.-Congreve.

The objective case is that form or state of a noun or pronoun, which usually denotes the object of a verb, participle, or preposition: as, I know the boy; he knows

me.

Obs. 1.—The object of a verb, participle, or preposition, is that which answers to whom or what after it; as, “I know the boy."

."-I know whom The boy. Boy is therefore here in the objective case.

Obs. 2. --The nominative and the objective of nouns, are always alike in form, being distinguishable from each other only by their place in a sentence, or their simple dependence according to the sense.

THE DECLENSION OF NOUNS.

The declension of a noun is a regular arrangement of its numbers and cases.

Thus:

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

ANALYSIS.

Analysis is the separation of a sentence into the parts which compose it.

Every sentence must contain, at least, two principal parts; namely, the subject and the predicate.

The subject of a sentence is that of which it treats; as, “ The sun has set.”—“ Can you write ?”

The predicate is that which expresses the action, being, or passion, as belonging to the subject. It is therefore always a verb.

Any combination of the subject and predicate is called a proposition.

A simple sentence is one that contains only one proposition; as, “ Fire burns.”—“The truth will prevail.”

Sentences are divided, with respect to the nature of the propositions which they contain, into four classes ; declarative, interrogative, imperative, and exclamatory.

A sentence is declarative when it expresses an affirmation or negation; interrogative, when it expresses a question; imperative, when it expresses a command; and exclamatory, when it expresses an exclamation.

OBs. 1.—The predicate being always a verb, the subject of the sentence is the subject of the verb, as detined in Ovs. page 52. The oliject of the verb, when the latter is the preuicate of a sentence, may be considered one of thé principal parts of the sentence. It properly, however, inodifies the verb, and is not a primary element of the sentence. In imperative sentences, the subject is the pronoun thou dr you (understood). For the definition of the object of a verb, see Obs. 1, page 53.

Obs. 2.- There are sometimes used in connection with a sentence, words that form no part of its structure. Such words are said to be independent. A noun or a pronoun may be independent in various ways; as, 1. The name of a person or thing addressed ; as, John, when will

you go ?"-" O ye of little faith!" 2. The name of a person or thing which is the subject of an exclama

Alas, poor Yorick ! 3. An expletive word used merely to make the subject or object em

phatic; as, “The Spring—she is a blessed thing !"—Gad, a troop

shall overcome him." Such nouns and pronouns, although independent in state, require tho form of the nominative case, and therefore, in parsing, should be said to be in that case. Interjections are always independent.

tion; as,

EXERCISES IN ANALYSIS AND PARSING.

PRAXIS II.-ETYMOLOGICAL. to the Second Praxis, it is required of the pupilto state

hether the sentence is declarative, interrogative, imperative,

« ՆախորդըՇարունակել »