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Alfonso XIII, and, as a result, the former monarch's death is made to occur before his birth.

Notwithstanding the fact that good usage authorizes the locution "than whom," the word "than" is a conjunction, not a preposition; and therefore a pronoun following "than" is not necessarily in the objective case. "He can preach better than I, but adverse criticism annoys him more than me.” “I'd rather face him than her, for she has a sharper tongue than he." "I" and "me" in the first of these sentences are correct forms, as are "her" and "he" in the second. "I liked his sermon the best of any of them." Both grammar and good usage demand "better than any other" or "best of all," or "better than all others." "That explanation of all others he should have avoided," is nonsense; an explanation simply cannot be one of all others. "Of all explanations that is the one he should have avoided," or, "That explanation, beyond all others, he should have avoided," is correct.

One other reflection regarding the use of pronouns it may be worth while to set down. Tautology, or the repetition of the same word, is a far less grievous offense than is either obscurity or ambiguity. Dr. Campbell, in his "Philosophy of Rhetoric," says on this point: "It is easy to conceive that in numberless instances the pronoun ‘he' will be ambiguous, when two or more males happen to be mentioned in the same clause of a sentence. In such a case we ought always either to give another turn to the expression, or to use the noun itself, and not the pronoun; for when the repetition of a word is necessary it is not offen

sive." The better plan is to alter the structure of the sentence in such a way as to avoid both ambiguity and repetition; but if there must be a sacrifice of euphony or else of clearness, there should be no hesitation in securing perspicuity rather than harmony, sense rather than sound.

Few writers on English composition have failed to call attention to the fact that, as our language has scarcely any of those inflections which in other tongues, Latin and Greek, for instance, show the mutual relations of words, the order and collocation of the elements of an English sentence must be looked after with especial care. In varying phraseology all our modern rhetoricians repeat the rule laid down by Dr. Blair: “A capital rule in the arrangement of sentences is, that the words or members most nearly related should be placed in the sentence as near to each other as possible; so as to make their mutual relations clearly appear.". If, as we have seen, the observance of this rule is necessary in the case of pronouns, it is scarcely less important in that of adverbs, adverbial phrases, and similar modifying elements. The writer who has learned how to place in their exactly proper position such adverbs as only, wholly, at least, at all events, perhaps, indeed, in fact, and too, has mastered half the secret of constructing sentences that are clear.

A pertinent observation concerning the use of some of these adverbs by priests is that the wrong position of the words matters less in spoken than in written sentences. In preaching a sermon our tone and emphasis frequently suffice to show

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clearly a reference which is not at all apparent when the words are set down in the same order in writing or in print. "I only mentioned last Sunday in speaking of the sacrament of Penance one of the qualities of contrition," says the preacher; and the emphasis he gives to "one" indicates that it is the word to which "only" is meant to refer. His hearers understand him, and hence, for all practical purposes, his spoken sentence is clear. As printed above, however, it is not clear, at least not immediately so, to the reader. From its position, “only” seems to modify "mentioned,” and we are led to expect some such subsequent clause as "I did not dwell upon," or "I did not insist upon.' Had the preacher said, "In speaking last Sunday on the sacrament of Penance, I mentioned one only of the qualities of contrition," his sentence would have been clear to the eye as well as to the ear. "Of the relative piety or indifference shown by the Catholics of our city you may judge for yourself from the statement that in two parishes only three hundred communicants daily approach the Holy Table." As spoken, that sentence may have been quite clear; as written, it is unmistakably ambiguous. It contains praise or blame according as "only" is made to refer to "two parishes" or to "three hundred communicants." Nor can the faulty construction be justified by saying that the placing of a comma after "only" will remove the ambiguity. Punctuation is useful, but the sense of such a statement as the foregoing should not be left to the mercy of a comma. If the sentence is not recast, "only" should be replaced by "alone."

A rather fantastic use, or misuse, of a particular adverb appears at present to be coming into fashion, especially among such of the occasionally indevout female sex as write "best sellers." It is the employment of "too" at the beginning of a sentence. "Too, he was considered to be the handsomest member of the group." "Too, she longed for the restfulness of the old home atmosphere." It is surely bad enough to begin an independent sentence with "however"; to give the same prominence to "too" is to take intolerable liberties with an inoffensive word. To find an equally grotesque misuse of the word, one has to recall the complimentary terms in which the three Highlanders referred to the liquor proffered them by their laird: ""Tis the best whiskey," declared Sandy, "I never drank in all my born days."-"So did I, neither," commented Aleck. And Jock corroborated both statements with, "Neither did I, too."

"I haven't smoked all morning," said a cleric recently. "Neither have I," replied one of his hearers, but all the same I've enjoyed two cigars since breakfast." "I haven't all morning had a smoke," was the first speaker's meaning. "Dean Sullivan spoke of the suggestion that the Pope's proposals for peace might be rejected with absolute contempt." The meaning here is probably that the Dean spoke with absolute contempt of the suggestion mentioned; but the position of the modifying phrase seems to imply that the Pope's proposals might be contemptuously rejected. "I never expect to be a bishop," modestly affirms Father Byrnes. His presumable meaning is not what his phrase

ology indicates: that, although he habitually thinks a good deal about the episcopal dignity, he does not ever admit the probability of his eventually wearing the purple. What he really intends to say is: "I have never expected, nor do I now expect, to be a bishop," or, more briefly, "I do not believe that I shall ever be a bishop." Some examples of the misplacement of "only" have already been given. The editors of the Standard Dictionary make a statement which should prove an effective substitute for numberless other examples: "Some years ago a critic showed that, by the principles of permutation, a short paragraph of a noted English writer, containing several onlys, might have any one of about five thousand meanings."

This chapter, however, has already grown to an inordinate length, and it must, therefore, even at the cost of symmetry and rounded-out completeness, be brought to a speedy conclusion. Needless to say, there are dozens of other linguistic rubrics of which no mention has been made in the preceding paragraphs-rules relating to such qualities of a sentence as unity, force, ease, and harmony; and, even with respect to clearness, what has been said is suggestive rather than in any sense exhaustive. A full treatise, not a mere chapter of a book, would be needed for the adequate discussion of words and sentences, even if little or no space were accorded to those larger structures of language in composition, the paragraph, the chapter, and the discourse or the book as a whole. Despite its manifold deficiencies, however, this essay will serve its essential purpose if it revives in even a

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