Imagens das páginas

“ The wise and good of every name are, wrth diversity of gifts but the same spirit, striving, each in his own way, to carry society forward into a healthier condition than the present.” By inserting a comma after “ gifts,” — a mode of pointing which is correct in itself,

— the relation between the verb " are” and the participle “ striving would be in some mexsure concealed from the eye.

k. The principle of omission exemplified in the preceding remark may be occasionally applied to sentences of a different construction, where words or expressions, admitting a comma without its being essential to the sense, are united to others from which the commas cannot at all be excluded. If this principle is judiciously applied, the relations and dependencies of the several parts of a sentence will be often exhibited to much advantage.

Why, according to the fifth Rule, should certain words and phrases in the fol

lowing sentences be set off by commas? -
Truth is not a stagnant pool, but a fountain.
Measure your life by acts of goodness, not by years.
Intrinsic worth, and not riches, ought to procure esteem.
Speak for, not against, the principles of love and peace.
You were paid to fight against, and not to rail at, Alexander.
Washington was the head of the nation, and not of a party.
Though deep, yet clear; though gentle, yet not dull.
Rhetoric is the science, and oratory the art, of speaking well.
There are few voices in the world, but many echoes.

State the principles, as given in the Remarks, for the omission or the insertion

of commas in the following sentences :Philosophy makes us wiser, Christianity makes us better, men. Milton burned with a deep yet calm love of moral grandeur. He was not only the teacher but the model of his pupils. Socrates was directed by a good, if not a divine, genius. Learning is the ally, not the adversary, of genius. The man suffered not only in his estate, but in his reputation. It is the duty of a child, not to direct, but to obey, his parents. Religion dwells not in the tongue, but in the heart. To die for truth is not to die for one's country, but for the world We ought not to betray, but to defend, our country.


Punctuate those sentences which require commas, in accordance with the princi.

ples laid down in the preceding Rule and Remarks (pp. 45-47): –

It is not the business of virtue to extirpate the affections but to regulate them. (Rule, and Remark i.)

We live in deeds not years; in thoughts not breaths; in feelings not in figures on a dial. (Rule.)

Novel-reading is generally calculated to weaken if not to debase the moral powers. (Rule, and Remark d.)

Punishments often shock instead of harmonizing with the common feeling and sense of justice. (Rule.)

Most of Homer's defects may reasonably be imputed not to his genius but to the manners of the age in which he lived. (Rem. h.)

He who is insensible to praise is either raised far above or sunk inuch below the ordinary standard of human nature. (Rule.)

Knowledge is conducive if not essential to all the ends of virtue (Rule, and Remark d.)

Zeal without knowledge, prudence without courage, and peacefulness without principle, are dangerous qualities. (Remark g.)

Christians have cast away the spirit in settling the precise dignity of their Master. (Rule.)

The Pyrrhonists not only doubted of every thing they saw and heard but of their own existence. (Rule, and Remark i.)

A lofty rectitude marked every small as well as every great action of Washington's life. (Remark c.)

The treasures of wisdom are not to be seized with a violent hand but to be earned by persevering labor. (Rule, and Remark i.)

The literature of a nation is one of its highest and certainly one of its most refined elements of greatness and order. (Rule.)

Those who flatter the prejudices of others are the enemies not the friends of the improvement and happiness of mankind. (Remark d.)

God's love to us is not a technical dogma but a living and practical truth. (Rule.)

Christianity may harmonize with but it needs not the sanction of philosophy. (Rule, and Remark b.)

A man's self-reproach may be less for what one has than for what he has not done. (Rule.)

Whenever words are contrasted with contradistinguished from or opposed to other words, they are always emphatical. (Rule, and Remark b.)

Motives of the most sincere though fanciful devotion induced the old man to renew the half-defaced inscriptions on the tombs of his ancestors. (Remark c.)

Benevolence is not merely a feeling but a principle; not a dream of rapture for the fancy to indulge is but a business for the hand to execute. (Rule, and Remark f.)

The missionary went forth, not only with the wisdom of the serpent but with the simplicity of the dove, to do battle against every form of error and vice. (Remark j.)

Society proceeds from barbarity to refinement, from ignorance to knowledge, from wealth to corruption, and from corruption to ruin. (Remark g.)

Every one can distinguish an angry from a placid a cheerful from a melancholy a thoughtful from a thoughtless and a dull from a penetrating countenance. (Remarks 9, a, and Rule.)

Though unavoidable calamities make a part yet they make not the chief part of the vexations and sorrows that distress human life. (Rule, and Remark f.)

The great object of education is not to store the mind with knowledge but to give activity and vigor to its powers. (Remark i, and Rule.)

We are so made as to be capable not only of perceiving but also of being pleased with or pained by the various objects by which we are surrounded. (Rule, and Remarks h, b.)

From the hour at which printing was invented, the brain and not the arm, the thinker and not the soldier, books and not kings, were to rule the world. (Remark g.)

A rhetorical sometimes a grammatical pause should be used after words in apposition with or in opposition to each other. (Rule, and Remarks a, b.)

Poetry is a voice that issues from and finds its echoes in the deep popular heart, where lies the source of all faith and of all enthusiasm for good. (Rule, and Remark b.)

Contrasted faults through all their manners reign:

Though poor luxurious; though submissive vain; . Though grave yet trifling; zealous yet untrue;

And, even in penance, planning sins anew. (Rule, and Remark f.) By the side of man should stand woman, -not Amazonian but angelic; gentle yet godlike in works of knowledge and duty; meek yet mighty in all the miracles of charity and benevolence. (Rule, and Remark f.)


The Subject and the Predicate.

No point, or pause-mark, is admissible between the subject or nominative and the predicate, or after any word that has a direct bearing on an expression which inmediately follows.


1. Poetry has a natural alliance with the best affections of the human heart 2. A grandee on the exchange may be a pauper in God's universe. 3. To be totally indifferent to praise or censure is a real defect in character. 4. The love which survives the tomb is one of the noblest attributes of the soul.

REMARKS. a. In the above examples, the words “poetry,” “grandee," "to be indifferent” (equivalent to the noun indifference), and “love," are the several nominatives to the verbs "has," “ may be," and " is." Such phrases as “a grandee on the exchange," "to be totally indifferent to praise or censure," are sometimes called nominative phrases ; and such an expression as “the love which survives the tomb," a, nominative clause. (See pp. 21, 22; V., VI.) But, logically speaking, all these are the subjects of what are severally predicated of them.

b. In these examples, with a partial exception in the first, the nominatives and verbs are accompanied by certain modifying or limiting phrases, so strictly connected in sense with the former as to be grammatically inseparable from them. In other words, each of the sentences expresses an uninterrupted flow of thought, and therefore allows no marked division.

c. There is, however, a class of sentences in which the subject or the predicate is accompanied with expressions, qualifying or explanatory, that are separable from the portions with which they are connected; as, “ The weakest reasoners, especially on the subject of religion, are, generally speaking, the most positive.” — “ Health, which is God's gift, should be preserved.” Expressions of this kind are sometimes termed parenthetical or intermediate, and will be particularly considered under Rule VIII. In every such case, two commas must be used, as above, to show the relation of the nominative to its verb, and that of the verb to the chief words in the predicate.

d. In the rule, it is said that no pause-mark is admissible under certain circumstances, therein specified. This qualification of the principle laid down will be clearly understood, if the learner bear in mind that pauses are of two kinds: first, those which are marked, or represented to the eye, by the common grammatical points, exhibiting the constituent parts of sentences; and, second, those which are unmarked, - such rhetorical pauses as are omitted in writing and printing, but required in reading aloud. Thus, in the examples under the rule, the sense and the construction alike forbid the comma to interfere in separating the nominative or subject from the verb; and vet a correct elocution demands between them a slight pause.

e. From want of attending to the distinction between these two kinds of pauses, some writers would place a comma immediateiy before the verb, when its subject consists of a number of words, or, as it is commonly expressed, when the nominative is accompanied with an inseparable adjunct; as, “The good taste of the present age, has not allowed us to neglect the cultivation of the English language." But unless where, in any given sentence, the length of the subject would give rise to ambiguity or to difficulty in reading it, this mode of punctuation seems to be useless. Indeed the reason assigned on its behalf is a sufficient ground for its rejection; namely, that the nominative is accompanied with an inseparable adjunct. For if the adjunct cannot be separated from the nominative, and if the nominative is intimately joined in sense with the verb which it governs, surely the relation subsisting between them should not be broken up, except in cases where it is absolutely necessary. That such adjuncts, too, are as intimately and grammatically connected with the verb as they are with the nominative, and that they cannot well stand apart, will be obvious from the example already given, which means that " the good taste of the present age has not allowed us” — and not that the good taste has not allowed us " _“to neglect the cultivation of the English language.” Sentences of this kind are obviously very different from those in which adjuncts, or modifying words, are separable both from the nominative and from the verb, as in the examples cited in Remark c, where a comma, both before and after the intervening phrase, serves to bring together the parts related to each other. The pointing objected to is based on a theory which cannot be reduced to practice, - that every expression, separated from another by the smallest cessation of the voice, should be indicated by a mark; but we again repeat, that only by the sense and the grammatical form of a passage, and not by the rhetorical mode

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