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wish to please, (and why should they not wish it ?) they disdain dishonourable means." “ It was represented by an analogy, (Oh, how inadequate !) which was borrowed from paganism." See the Octavo Grammar, on this subject.


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There are other characters, which are frequently made ike of in composition, and which may be explained in this place, riz.

An Apostrophe, marked thus' is used to abbreviate or shorten a word : as, 'lis for it is : tho' for though ; e'en for even ; judgʻd for judged. Its chief use is to show the genitive case of nouns: as, “ A man's property ; a woman's ornament."

A Caret, marked thus A is placed where some word happens to be left out in writing, and which is inserted over the line. This mark is also called a circumflex, when placed over a particular vowel, to denote a long syllable : as, "Euphrates."

A Hyphen, marked thus - is employed in connecting compounded words; as, “ Lap-dog, tea-pot, pre-existence, self-love, to-morrow, mother-in-law.”

It is also used when a word is divided, and the former part is written or printed at the end of one line, and the Jatter part at the beginning of another. In this case, it is placed at the end of the first line, not at the beginning of the second.

The Acute Accent, marked thus': as, “ Fáncy." The Grave thus' as, “ Favour."

In English, the Accentual marks are chiefly used in spelling-books and dictionaries, to mark the syllables which require a particular stress of the voice in pronunciation.

The stress is laid on long and short syllables indiscriminately. In order to distinguish the one from the other, some writers of dictionaries have placed the grave on the former, and the acute on the latter, in this manner : Mìnor, mineral, lively, lived, rival, river.”


The proper mark to distinguish a long syllable, is this o: as, “Rosy :" and a short one this ; as, “Folly." This last mark is called a breve.

A Diæresis, thus marked “, consists of two points placed over one of the two vowels that would otherwise make a diphthong, and parts them into two syllables : as, “ Creätov,. coädjutor, aërial.”

A Section, marked thus f, is the division of a discourse, or chapter, into less parts or portions.

A Paragraph ( denotes the beginning of a new subject or a sentence not connected with the foregoing. This character is chiefly used in the Old, and in the New Testąments.

A Quotation“”. Two inverted commas are generally placed at the beginning of a phrase or a passage, which is quoted or transcribed from the speaker or author in his own words; and two commas in their direct position, are placed at the conclusion : as,

“ The proper study of mankind is man." Crotchets or Brackets [ ] serve to enclose a word or sen, tence, which is to be explained in a note, or the explanation itself, or a word or a sentence which is intended to supply some deficiency, or to rectify some mistake.

An Index or Hand points out a remarkable passage, or something that requires particular attention.

A Brace

} is used in poetry at the end of a triplet or

three lines, which have the same rhyme.

Braces are also used to connect a number of words with one common term, and are introduced to prevent a repe tition in writing or printing.

An Asterisk, or little star *, directs the reader to some note in the margin, or at the bottom of the page. Two or three asterisks generally denote the omission of some letters in a word, or of some bold or indelicate expression, or sonte defect in the manuscript.

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An Ellipsis is also used, when some letters in a word, or some words in a verse, are omitted ; as,

“ The kg," for “ the king.”

An Obelisk, which is marked thus t; and Parallels thus li together with the letters of the Alphabet, and figures, are used as references to the margin, or bottom of the page.


It may not be improper to insert, in this place, a few general directions respecting the division of a composition into paragraphs.

Different subjects, unless they are very short, or very numerous in small compass, should be separated into paragraphs.

When one subject is continued to a considerable length, the larger divisions of it should be put into paragraphs. And it will have a good effect to form the breaks, when it can properly be done, at sentiments of the most weight, or that call for peculiar attention.

The facts, premises, and conelusions, of a subject, sometimes naturally point out the separations into paragraphs : and each of these, when of great length, will again require subdivisions at their most distinctive parts.

In cases which require a connected subject to be formed into several paragraphs, a suitable turn of expression, exhibiting the connexion of the broken parts, will give beauty and force to the division. See the Octavo Grammar.

DIRECTIONS respecting the use of CAPITAL LETTERS.

It was formerly the custom to begin every noun with a capital : but as this practice was troublesome, and gave the writing or printing a crowded and confused appearanoe, it has been discontinued. - It is, however, very proper to begin with a capital,

1. The first word of every book, chapter, letter, note, or any other piece of writing.

2. The first word after a period; and, if the two sentences... are totally independent, after a note of interrogation or exclamation.

Butif a number of interrogative or exclamatory sentences, are thrown into one general group; or if the construction of the latter sentences depends on the former, all of them, except the first, may begin with a small letter : as, “ How long, ye simple ones, will ye love simplicity ? and the scorners delight in their scorping ? and fools hate knowledge ?” “ Alas! how different ! yet how like the same !"

3. The appellations of the Deity: as," God, Jehovah, the Almighty, the Supreme Being, the Lord, Providence, the Messiah, the Holy Spirit.”

4. Proper names of persons, places, streets, mountains, rivers, ships : as, “ George, York, the Strand, the Alps, the Thames, the Seahorse."

5. Adjectives derived from the proper names of places; as, “Grecian, Roman, English, French, and Italian."

6. The first word of a quotation, introduced after a colon, or when it is in a direct form: as, “ Always remember this ancient maxim : Know thyself.'" “ Our great Lawgiver says, * Take up thy cross daily, and follow me.” But when a quotation is brought in obliquely after a comma, a capital is unnecessary : as, “Solomon observes,' that pride goes before destruction.'»

The first word of an example may also very properly begin with a capital : as, “ Temptation proves our virtue.” 7. Every substantive and principal word in the titles of

Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language ;"" " Thomson's Seasons ;"“ Rollin's Ancient His tory."

8. The first word of every line in poetry.

9. The pronoun 1, and the interjection 0, are written in capitals : as, “I write :” “Hear, 0 earth !"

Other words, besides the preceding, may begin with capitals, when they are remarkably emphatical, or the princ pal subject of the composition.


books : as,




PERSPICUITY IS the fundamental quality of style : a quality so essential in every kind of writing, that for the want of it nothing can atone. It is not to be considered as merely a sort of negative virtue, or freedom fronı defect. It has higher merit ; it is a degree of positive beauty. We are pleased with an author, and consider him as deserving praise, who frees us from all fatigue of searching for his ineaning; who carriès us through his subject without any embarrassment or confusion ; whose style flows always like a limpid stream, through which we see to the very bottom..

The study of perspicuity and accuracy of expression consists of two parts : and requires attention, first, to Single Words and Phrasés ; and then, to the Construction of Sen. tences,


respect to single Words and Phrases. TAESE qualities of style, considered with regard to words. and phrases, require the following properties : PURITY, PROPRIETY,





PURITY of style consists in the use of such words, and such constructions, as belong to the idiom of the language which we speak; in opposition to words and phrases that are taken from other languages, or that are ungrammatical,

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