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From the preceding remarks and examples, it appears that no exact and determinate rule can be given for the placing of adverbs, on all occasions. The general rule may be of considerable use, but the easy flow and perspicuity of the phrase, are the things which ought to be chiefly regarded.
The adverb there is often used as an expletive, or as a word that adds nothing to the sense ; in which case it precedes the verb and the nominative noun: as, 66. There is a person at the door;"? " There are some thieves in the house ;'' which would be as well, or better, expressed by saying, 6. A person is at the door;". Some thieves are in the house."
.??. Sometimes, it is made use of to give a small degree of emphasis to the sentence : as,
4 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.”. When it is applied in its strict sense, it principally follows the verb and the nominative case : as, ". The man stands there."
1. The adverb never generally precedes the verb: as," I never was there ;' “ He never comes at a proper time." When an auxiliary is used, it is placed indifferently, either before or after this adverb: as, “ He was never seen (or never was seen) to laugh from that time.” Never seems to be improperly used in the following passages. never so much dowry and gift.” “ If I make my hands never so clean.”... “. Charm he never so wisely.” The word “ ever" would be more suitable to the sense.
2. In imitation of the French idiom, the adverb of place where, is often used instead of the pronoun relative and a preposition. “ They framed a protestation, where they repeated all their former claims.;" i. e. “ in which they repeated.” “ The king was still determined to run forwards, in the same course where he was already, by his precipitate career, too fatally advanced ;" i, e., “ in which he was." But it would be better to avoid this mode of expressioil.
The adverbs hence, thence, and whence, imply a preposition ; for they signify, " from this place, from that place, from what place." It seems, therefore, strictly speaking, to
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be improper to join a preposition with them, because it is superfluous: as, “ This is the leviathan, from whence the wits of our age are said to borrow their weapons ;" “ An ancient author prophesies from hence." But the origin of these words is little attended to, and the preposition from 80 often used in construction with them, that the omission of it, in many cases, would seem stiff, and be disagreeable.
The adverbs here, there, where, are often improperly applied to verbs signifying motion, instead of the adverbs hither, thither, whilher : as, “ He came here bastily;" “ They rode there with speed." They should be, “ He came hither;" “ They rode thither," &c.
3. We have some examples of adverbs being used for substantives: “ In 1687, he erected it into a community of regulars, since when, it has begun to increase in those countries as a religious order ;" i. e." since which time." " A little while and I shall not see you ;" i. e. a short time." “ It is worth their while;" i.e. "it deserves their time and pains." But this use of the word rather suits familiar than grave style. The same may be said of the phrase, “ To do a thing anyhon;" i. e. “ in any manner;" or, somehow ;" i. e. in some manner." “ Somehow, worthy as these people are, they are under the influence of prejudice.”
RULF XVI. Two negatives, in English, destroy one another, or are equivalent to an affirmative : as, " Nor did they not perceive him;" that is, “they did perceive him.” “His language, though inelegant, is not ungrammatical ;" that is, " it is grammatical.”
It is better to express an affirmation, by a regular affirmative, than by two separate negatives, as in the former sentence : but when one of the negatives is joined to another word, as in the latter sentence, the two negatives form a pleasing and delicate variety of expression.
Some writers have improperly employed two negatives instead of one; as in the following instances: “I never did repent of doing good, nor shall not now;!' nor shall I non.” “Never no imitator grew up to his author:" " never did any," &c. “ I cannot by no means allow him what his argument must prove;"
;" “I cannot by any means," &c. or, " I can by no ineans.” .” “ Nor let no comforter approach me;"
nor let any comforter,” &c. “ Nor is danger ever apprehended in such a government, no more than we commonly apprehend danger from thunder or earthquakes :" it should be, “any more." "Ariosto, Tasso, Galileo, no more than Raphael, were not born in republics.” “ Neither Ariosto, Tasso, nor Galileo, any more than Raphael, was born in a republic."
RULE XVII. Prepositions govern the objective case : fas, “I have heard a good character of her;" "From him that is needy turn not away ;" “A word to the wise is sufficient for them;" “ We may be good and happy without riches."
The following are examples of the nominative case being used instead of the objective. “ Who servest thou under ?" “ Who do you speak to ?” “We are still much at a loss who civil power belongs to ?" Who dost thou ask for ?” " Associate not with those who none can speak well of.” In all these places it ought to be " whom." See Note 1.
The prepositions to and for are often understood, chiefly before the pronouns: as,'Give me the book ;'. Get me some paper;' that is,' to me; for me. Wo is me ;' i. e. ' to me.' "He was banished England;" i. e. "from England."
1. The preposition is often separated froin the relative which it governs: as, “ Whom wilt thou give it to ?" instead of, “ To whom wilt thou give it ?” “He is an author whom I am much delighted with ;" “ The world is too polite to shock authors with a truth, which generally their booksellers are the first that inform them of.” This is an idiom to which our language is strongly inclined; it prevails in common conversation, and suits very well wiih the familiar style in writing: but the placing of the preposition before the relative, is more graceful, as well as more perspicuous, and agrees much better with the solemn and elevated style.
2. Some writers separate the preposition from its noun, in order to connect different prepositions with the same noun : as, “ To suppose the zodiac and planets to be efficient of, and antecedent to, themselves.” This, whether in the familiar or the solemn style, is always inelegant, and should generally be avoided. In forms of law, and the like, where fulness and exactness of expression must take place of every other consideration, it may be admitted.
3. Different relations, and different senses, must be expressed by different prepositions, though in conjunction with the same verb or adjective. Thus we say, to con verse wilh a person, upon a subject, in a house, &c.” We also say, “ We are disappointed of a thing," when we cannot get it, “and disappointed in it,” when we have it, and find it does not answer our expectations. But two different prepositions must be improper in the same construction, and in the same sentence: as, “ The combat between thirty French against twenty English."
In some cases, it is difficult to say, to which of two prepositions the preference is to be given, as both are used promiscuously, and custom has not decided in favour of either of them. We say, “Expert at,” and “ expert in a thing.”, “Expert at finding a remedy for his mistakes ;" • Expert in deception."
When prepositions are subjoined to nouns, they are generally the same that are subjoined to the verbs from which the nouns are derived : as,' A compliance with,''to comply wilh ;" • A disposition to tyranny,' disposed to tyrannize.'
4. As an accurate and appropriate use of the preposition is of great importance, we shall select a considerable number of examples of impropriety, in the application of this part of speech.
“ He was
1st, With respect to the preposition of—" He is resolved of going to the Persian court;"
;"on going,” &c. totally dependent of the Papal crown;" " on the Papal," &c.“ To call of a person,” and “ to wait of him ;" person,” &c. “He was eager of recommending it to his fellow citizens," " in recommending," &c. Of is sometimes omitted, and sometimes inserted, after worthy: as, It is worthy observation," or, “ of observation." But it would have been better omitted in the following sentences. emulation, who should serve their country best, no longer subsists among them, but of who should obtain the most lucrative command." “ The rain hath been falling of a long time ;" “ falling a long time.” “It is situation chiefly which decides of the fortune and characters of men :" “ decides the fortune," or,“ concerning the fortune.” “ He found the greatest difficulty of writing; "in writing.” “It might have
" given me a greater taste of its antiquities." A taste of a thing implies actual enjoyment of it; but a taste for it, implies only a capacity for enjoyment. “This had a much greater share of inciting him, than any regard after his father's commands;" «share in inciting,' and “regard to his father's," &c.
2d, With respect to the prepositions to and for.—" You have bestowed your favours to the most deserving persons ;" “ upon the most deserving," &c. "He accused the ministers for betraying the Dutch :” “ of having betrayed.” • His abhorrence to that superstitious figure ;' “ of that," &c. “A great change to the better;" " for the better.” * Your prejudice to my cause;" “ against.” “The English were very different people then to what they are at present ;" " from what," &c. “In compliance to the declaration;" "with,” &c. “ It is more than they thought for ;"
thought of.” “There is no need for it ;" “ of it.” For is superfluous in the phrase, “ More than he knows for." “No discouragement for the authors to proceed;" " to the authors,” &c. “ It was perfectly in compliance to some persons ;"
“ The wisest princes need not think it
;" 6 ruith.”