Imagens das páginas

ing words, as “though” and “yet” in No. 3, they are named correlative; when one clause is subject to another for completeness of sense, as those in No. 4, they are called dependent ; and when one is simply added to another, co-ordinate or consecutive clauses, as exemplified in No. 5.

VI. A PHRASE consists of at least two words, being a form of expression, or part of a sentence, which has no finite verb, expressed or understood; and which therefore does not of itself make any assertion, or form complete sense; as,

[blocks in formation]

| 4. Awkward in person. I 7. To confess the truth.

5. Studious of praise. 1 8. Law and order.
6 Useful to artists. 9. A man of wisdom.

1 6: Useful to artists

In works on grammar, these and similar expressions are usually called imperfect phrases; but the definition just given will preclude the necessity of using the epithet. An article or any unemphatic word and a noun, or the simple infinitive, - as, a book, the man, to love, will, to avoid circumlocution, be treated in the following pages, not as a phrase, but as a word.

A nominative phrase consists of several words, standing as the subject of a proposition. An adjectival, a participial, a prepositional phrase, are phrases severally beginning with an adjective, a parti ciple, or a preposition. Those phrases, however, which, though commencing with a preposition, are used instead of single adverbs, are commonly spoken of as adverbial phrases; as, “ In haste,” for hastily.

VII. TERMS and EXPRESSIONS. – To avoid repetition, a word or a phrase is sometimes called a term; and a phrase or a clause, an expression.

VIII. PARENTHETICAL WORDS or EXPRESSIONs are intermediate words, phrases, or clauses, which, though required by the sense of the passage in which they occur, are not essential to the construction. Of these a fuller description, with illustrations, will be given under the rule which treats of the mode of punctuating them.

IX. CORRELATIVES. — When two words express reciprocal relations, or correspond one to another, they are termed correlative words ; as, “ Pompey was not so brave a general as Cæsar.” — " Though the man was intellectually rich, yet he was morally poor."

Correlatives may be nouns, adjectives, or adverbs; but those to which reference will be made in this work are chiefly of a conjunc tive nature, denoting relations of various kinds, - sometimes that of connection, dependence, or consequence; and sometimes of comparison, similitude, or equality.

X. APPOSITION. – Nouns, pronouns, or phrases, or a noun or pronoun and a phrase, are said to be in apposition, when put in the same case, and signifying the same thing, or when one is used as explana tory of the other; as, “ The river Thames.”

XI. A SERIES denotes a succession of three or more words, phrases, or clauses, joined in construction; as, –

1. The hermit's life is private, calm, devotional, and contemplative. 2. Fire of imagination, strength of mind, and firmness of soul, are rare gifts. 3. God's love watcheth over all, provideth for all, maketh wise adaptations

for all.

The first example exhibits a series of words; the second, of phrases; the third, of clauses. What are termed by elocutionists the members of a series will in this work be called particulars.

XII. A COMPOUND WORD consists of two or more simple or primitive words; as, –

[blocks in formation]

The simple words in compounds may, in general, be known from their being separately current in the language. For the sake of brevity, they are sometimes called simples or primitives.

The term DERIVATIVE is restricted to a compound word, the portions of which are not each separately used in English; as, manly, ercitement, consciousness, generalization : prospectus, circumstance, philosopher, theology.

XIII. The CoxsTRUCTION of a sentence is the mode in which its materials — its words, phrases, and clauses — are combined and arranged. When two or more phrases or expressions qualify others, or are qualified by them; when they act as nominatives to the same verb; when they govern the same words or phrases, or are governed by the same verbs, participles, or prepositions, - they are said to be in the same construction

After the pupil has acquired a knowledge of the meaning of the terms just explained, or revived the impressions which he had previously received from his study of syntactical principles, he should state, in his own words, the nature and object of Punctuation, and then analyze the following extracts, or any other piece of composition, into sentences, and their various parts :


ATHENS. – If we consider merely the subtlety of disquisition, the force of imagination, the perfect energy and elegance of expression, which characterize the great works of Athenian genius, we must pronounce them intrinsically most valuable. But what shall we say when we reflect that from hence have sprung, directly or indirectly, all the noblest creations of the human intellect; that from hence were the vast accomplishments and the brilliant fancy of Cicero, the withering fire of Juvenal, the plastic imagination of Dante, the humor of Cervantes, the comprehension of Bacon, the wit of Butler, the supreme and universal excellence of Shakspeare? All the triumphs of truth and genius over prejudice and power, in every country and in every age, have been the triumphs of Athens. Wherever a few great minds have made a stand against violence and fraud, in the cause of liberty and reason, there has been her spirit in the midst of them, inspiring, encouraging, consoling, - by the lonely lamp of Erasmus, by the restless bed of Pascal, in the tribune of Mirabeau, in the cell of Galileo, on the scaffold of Sidney. But who shall esti mate her influence on private happiness? Who shall say how many thousands have been made wiser, happier, and better by those pursuits in which she has taught mankind to engage; to how many the studies which took their rise from her have been wealth in poverty. liberty in bondage, health in sickness, society in solitude? Her power is, indeed, manifested at the bar, in the senate, in the field of battle, in the schools of philosophy. But these are not her glory. Wherever literature consoles sorrow, or assuages pain; wherever it brings gladness to eyes which fail with wakefulness and tears, and ache for the dark house and the long sleep, — there is exhibited, in its noblest form, the immortal influence of Athens.

The dervise, in the Arabian tale, did not hesitate to abandon to his comrade the camels with their load of jewels and gold, while he retained the casket of that mysterious juice which enabled him to behold at one glance all the hidden riches of the universe. Surely it is no exaggeration to say, that no external advantage is to be compared with that purification of the intellectual eye which gives us to contemplate the infinite wealth of the mental world; all the hoarded treasures of its primeval dynasties, all the shapeless ore of its yet unexplored mines. This is the gift of Athens to man. Her freedom and her power have, for more than twenty centuries, been annihilated; her people have degenerated into timid slaves; her language, into a barbarous jargon; her temples have been given up to the successive depredations of Romans, Turks, iind Scotchmen: but her intellectual empire is imperishable. And when those who have rivalled her greatness shall have shared her fate; when civilization and knowledge shall have fixed their abode in distant continents; when the sceptre shall have passed away from England; when, pernaps, travellers from distant regions shall in vain labor to decipher on some mouldering pedestal the name of our proudest chief, shall hear savage hymns chanted to some misshapen idol over the ruined dome of our proudest temple, and shall see a single naked fisherman wash his nets in the river of the ten thousand masts, – her influence and her glory will still survive, fresh in eternal youth, exempt from mutability and decay, iinmortal as the intellectual principle from which they derived their origin, and over which they exercise their control. - T. B. MACAULAY: Critical and Miscellaneous Essays, vol. iii. pp. 402, 403.

THE VOCATION OF Poetry. - It is the high and glorious vocation of Poesy as well to make our own daily life and toil more beautiful and holy to us by the divine ministerings of love, as to render us swift to convey the same blessing to our brother. Poesy is love's chosen apostle, and the very almoner of God. She is the home of the outcast, and the wealth of the needy. For her the hut becomes a palace, whose halls are guarded by the gods of Phidias, and kept peaceful by the maid-mothers of Raphael. She loves better the poor wanderer whose bare feet know by heart the freezing stones of the pavement, than the delicate maiden for whose dainty soles Brussels and Turkey have been overcareful; and I doubt not but some remembered scrap of childish song hath often been a truer alms than all the benevolent societies could give. — J. R. LOWELL: Conversations, foc., p. 133.




In accordance with the plan proposed in the last section, this chapter will be devoted to the consideration of the principal sentential marks, namely, —.

1. The COMMA ..........11
2. The SEMICOLON .........1;]
3. The COLON ..........1:]
4. The PERIOD .. .. . .. .. . [:]

The Comma marks the smallest grammatical division of a sentence, and usually represents the shortest pause; the Semicolon and the Colon separate those portions which are less connected than those divided by commas, and admit each of a greater pause; and tho Period is, what its name denotes, a full stop, which commonly terminates a sentence.


The names of the points have been borrowed by grammarians from the terms which rhetoricians employed to indicate the various kinds of sentences, and the parts of which they consist. Thus the Period signified a complete circuit of words; a sentence, making, from its commencement to its close, full and perfect sense. The Colon was the greatest member or division of a period or sentence; and the Semicolon, the greatest division of a colon; while the Comma indicated a smaller segment of the period, - the least constructive part of a sentence.

« AnteriorContinuar »