« PreviousContinue »
conjunction. Virtuous is an adjective, and belongs, &c. Prince is a common substantive, and in the nominative case, according to the fourth note of RULE XI.
“ To err is human." To err, is the infinitive mood, and the nominative case to the verb “is.” Is is an irregular verb neuter, indicative mood, present tense, and the third person singular, agreeing with its nominative case "to err,” according to Note 1, under RULE the first. Human is an adjective, and belongs to its substantive “nature” understood, according to rule VIII. which says, &c.
, “ To countenance persons who are guilty of bad actions, is
scarcely one remove from actually committing them.” To countenance persons who are guilty of bad actions, is part of a sentence, which is the nominative case to the verb " is." Is is an irregular verb neuter, &c. agreeing with the aforementioned part of a sentence, as its nominative case, according to Note 1. under rule the first. Scarcely is an adverb. One is a numeral adjective, agreeing with its substantive “remove."
Remove is a common substantive, of the neuter gender, the third person, the singular number, and in the nominative case, according to the fourth note of RULE XI. From is a preposition. Committing is the present participle of the regular active verb “to commit."
Them is a personal pronoun of the third person, the plural number, and in the objective case, governed by the participle “ committing," agreeably to RULE XIV. which
&c. “Charles was ardent, inconsiderate, and regardless of advice,
qualities incident to youth.' Charles is a proper name or substantive. (Repeat the person, number, and case.) Was is an irregular verb neuter. (Repeat the mood, tense, person, number, and agreement.) Ardent, inconsiderate, and regardless, are adjectives in the positive state, and belong to the substantive “ Charles,” according to RULE VIII, which says, &c. These adjectives are joined together by the conjunction and expressed between the two latter, and understood between the two former. Of is a preposition. Advice is a common substantive, of the third person, the singular number, and in the objective case, governed by the preposition of, according to RULE XVII. which says, &c. Qualities is a common substantive, of the neuter gender, the third person, the plural number, and in the nominative case. This word “ qualities, is put in apposition to the preceding clause, or part of the sentence, according to the observations in the second paragraph
under RULE X.
Incident is an adjective in the positive state, and belongs to its substantive qualities,” according to RULE VIII. which says, &c. To is a preposition. Youth is a common substantive of the third person, the singular number, and in the objective case, governed by the preposition to, according to RULE XVII. which
“Let me proceed."
This sentence, according to the statement of grammarians in general, is in the imperative mood, of the first person, and the singular number. The sentence may, however, be analyzed in the following manner. Let is an irregular verb active, in the imperative mood, of the second person, the plural number, and agrees with its nominative case “you,” understood : as, “ do you let.” Me is a personal pronoun of the first person, the singular number, and in the objective case, governed by the active verb “let," agreeably to RULE xi. which says, &c. Proceed is a regular verb neuter, in the infinitive mood, governed by the preceding verb “let,” according to RULE XII. which “Living expensively and luxuriously destroys health. By
living frugally and temperately, health is preserved." Living expensively and luxuriously, is the nominative case to the verb “ destroys,” according to Note 1, under RULE I. Lid. ing frugally and temperately, is a substantive phrase in the objective case, governed by the preposition “by,” according to Note 2, under RULE XIV.
The preceding specimens of parsing, if carefully studied by the learner, seem to be sufficiently explicit, to enable him to comprehend the nature of this employment; and sufficiently diversified, to qualify him, in other exercises, to point out and apply the remaining rules, both principal and subordinate.
The student may derive some advantage in the business of Parsing, and some improvement in the radical knowledge of many of the rules of syntax, by consulting the second chapter of the Exercises in Parsing, contained in volume 2, of this work; especially the ninth section of that chapter, entitled, “ Mode of verbally correcting erroneous sentences."
PROSODY consists of two parts: the former teaches the true PRONUNCIATION of words, comprising ACCENT, QUANTITY, EMPHASIS, PAUSE, and TONE; and the latter, the laws of VERSIFICATION.
Accent is the laying of a peculiar stress of the voice, on a certain letter or syllable in a word, that it may be better heard than the rest, or distinguished from them: as, in the word presúme, the stress of the voice must be on the letter u, and second syllable, sume, which take the accent.
As words may be formed of a different number of syllables, from one to eight or nine, it was necessary to have some peculiar mark to distinguish words from mere syllables; otherwise speech would be only a continued succession of syllables, without conveying ideas : for, as words are the marks of ideas, any confusion in the marks, must cause the same in the ideas for which they stand. It was therefore necessary, that the mind should at once perceive what number of syllables belongs to each word, in utterance. This might be done by a perceptible pause at the end of each word in speaking, as we form a certain distance between them in writing and printing.
But this would make discourse extremely tedious; and though it might render words distinct, would make the meaning of sentences confused. Syllables might also be sufficiently distinguished, by a certain elevation or depression of voice upon one syllable of each word, which was the practice of some nations. But the English tongue has, for this purpose, adopted a mark of the easiest and simplest kind, which is called accent, and which effectually answers the end.
Every word in our language, of more than one syllable, has one of them distinguished from the rest in this manner: and some writers assert, that every monosyllable of two or more letters, has one of its letters thus distinguished.
Accent is either principal or secondary. The principal accent is that which necessarily distinguishes one syllable in a word from the rest. The secondary accent is that stress, which we may occasionally place upon another syllable, besides that which has the principal accent: in order to pronounce every part of the word more distinctly, forcibly, and harmoniously: thus, “Complaisant, caravan,” and “ violin," have frequently an accent on the first as well as on the last syllable, though a somewhat less forcible one.
The same may be observed of “ Repartee, referee, privateer, domineer,” &c. But it must be observed, that though an accent is allowed on the first syllable of these words, it is by no means necessary; they may all be pronounced with one accent, and that on the last syllable, without the least deviation from propriety.
As emphasis evidently points out the most significant word in a sentence; so where other reasons do not forbid, the accent always dwells with greatest force on that part of the word which, from its importance, the hearer has always the greatest occasion to observe: and this is necessarily the root or body of the word. But as harmony of termination frequently attracts the accent from the root to the branches of words, so the first and most natural law of accentuation seems to operate less in fixing the stress than any other. Our own Saxon terminations, indeed, with perfect uniformity, leave the principal part of the word in quiet possession of what seems its lawful property ; but Latin and Greek terminations, of which our language is full, assume a right of preserving their original accent, and subject almost every word they bestow upon us to their own classical laws.
Accent, therefore, seems to be regulated, in a great measure, by etymology. In words from the Saxon, the accent is generally on the root: in words from the learned languages, it is generally on the termination; and if to these we add the different accent we lay on some words, to distinguish them from others, we seem to have the three great principles of accentuation ; namely, the radical, the terminational, and the distinctive. The radical : as, “ Love, lovely, loveliness ;" the terminational : as, “ Harmony, harmónious ;" the distinctive: as, “ Convert, to convért."
Words of two syllables have necessarily one of them accented, and but one. It is true, for the sake of emphasis, we sometimes lay an equal stress upon two successive syllables : as, “ Dí-réct, sóme-tímes ;" but when these words are pronounced alone, they have never more than one accent. The word “á-mén,” is the only word which is pronounced with two accents when alone.
Of dissyllables, formed by affixing a termination, the former syllable is commonly accented : as, “Childish, kingdom, áctest, ácted, tóilsome, lóver, scóffer, fairer, fóremost, zealous, fulness, meekly, ártist.”
Dissyllables, formed by prefixing a syllable to the radical word, have commonly the accent on the latter: as, “ To beseém, to bestów, to return."
Of dissyllables, which are at once nouns and verbs, the verb has commonly the accent on the latter, and the noun, on the former syllable : as, “ To cemént, a cément; to contráct, a contract; to preságe, a présage."
This rule has many exceptions. Though verbs seldom have their accent on the former, yet nouns of.en have it on the latter syllable: as, “ Delight, perfume." Those nouns which in the common order of language, must have preceded the verbs, often transmit their accent to the verbs they form, and inversely. Thus, the noun “water," must have preceded the verb “to wáter,” as the verb “to correspónd," must have preceded the noun “correspondent :” and “ to pursue” claims priority to “pursuit.” So that we may conclude, wherever verbs deviate from the rule, it is seldom by chance, and generally in those words only where a superior law of accent takes place.
All dissyllables ending in y, our, ow, le, ish, ic, ter, age, en, et, : as, "Cránny, labour, willow, wállow;" (except "allów, avów, endów, belów, bestów;) battle, bánish, cámbric, bátter, courage, fásten, quíet ;' accent the former syllable.
Dissyllable nouns in er: as, “ Cánker, bútter,” have the accent on the former syllable.
Dissyllable verbs, terminating in a consonant and e final: as, “Comprise, escape;" or having a diphthong in the last syl