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PART III.

SYNTAX

The third part of grammar is SYNTAX, which treats of the agreement and construction of words in a sentence.

A sentence is an assemblage of words, forming a complete sense.

Sentences are of two kinds, simple and compound.

A simple sentence has in it but one subject, and one finite* verb: as, "Life is short.”

A compound sentence consists of two or more simple sentences connected together : as, “Life is short, and art is long." "Idleness produces want, vice, and misery."

As sentences themselves are divided into simple and compound, so the members of sentences may be divided likewise into simple and compound members : for whole sentences, whether simple or compounded, may become members of other sentences, by means of some additional connexion; as in the following example : “ Thé ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master's crib ; but Israel doth not know, my people do not consider.” This sentence consists of two compounded members, each of which is subdivided into two simple meinbers, which are properly called clauses.

There are three sorts of simple sentences; the explica. tive, or explaining; the interrogative, or asking; the inperative, or commanding.

An explicative sentence is when a thing is said to be or not to be, to do or not to do, to suffer or not to suffer, in a direct manner : as, “ I am; thou writest ; Thomas, is loved.”: If the sentence be negative, the adverb not is placed after the auxiliary, or after the verb itself when it has no auxiliary: as, “ I did not touch him;" or, “ I touched him not."

* Finite verbs are those to which nunher and person appertain. Verbs in the infinitive mood have no respe; to number or person.

In an interrogative sentence, or when a question is asked, the nominative case follows the principal verb or the auxiliary : as,

6. Was it he ?” “ Did Alexander conquer the Persians ?

In an imperative sentence, when a thing is commanded to be, to do, to suffer, or not, the nominative case likewise follows the verb or the auxiliary: as, Go, thou traitor!" “ Do thou go :” “ Haste ye away:" unless the verb let' be used ; as,

- Let us be gone." A phrase is two or more words rightly put together, making sometimes part of a sentence, and sometimes a whole sentence.

Thę principal parts of a simple sentence are, the subject, the attribute, and the object.

The subject is the thing chiefly spoken of; the attribute is the thing or action affirmed or denied of it; and the object is the thing affected by such action.

The nominative denotes the subject, and usually goes before the verb or attribute ; and the word or phrase, denoting the object, follows the verb; as, " A wise man governs his passions." Here, a wise man is the subject; governs, the attribute, or thing affirmed; and his

passions, the object.

Syntax principally consist of two parts, Concord and Government.

Concord is the agreement which one word has with another, in gender, number, case, or person.

Government is that power which one part of speech has over another, in directing its mood, tense, or case.

To produce the agreement and right disposition of words in a sentence, the following rules and observations should be carefully studied.

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RULE I. A Verb must agree with its nominative case, in number and person : as, “I learn;" "'Thou art improved." "The birds sing.

The following are a few instances of the violation of this rule. "What signifies good opinions, when our prac.

seen :"

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." " has

tice is bad ?"" " what signify.'

"" There's two or three of us, who have seen the work :” “ there are." “ We may suppose there was more impostors than one:" " there were more.

" I have considered what have been said on both sides in this controversy:" "what has been said.” “ If thou would be healthy, live temperately:" “ if thou wouldst.Thou sees how little has been done :" “ thou seest." “ Though thou cannot do much for the cause, thou may and should do something :" canst not, mayst, and shouldst.' “ Full many a flower are born to blush un

“is born." "A conformity of inclinations and qualities prepare us for friendship :" prepares us.' variety of blessings have been conferred upon us :' been." “ In piety and virtue consist the happiness of man :" is consists." " To these precepts are subjoined a copious selection of rules and maxims :" " is subjoined.”

*1. The infinitive mood, or part of a sentence, is sometimes put as the nominative case to the verb; as, “To see the sun is pleasant;" “ To be good is to be happy;" “ A desire to excel others in learning and virtue is commendable;" “ That warm climates should accelerate the growth of the human body, and shorten its duration, is very reas - Fonable to believe ;" “ To be temperate in eating and drinking, to use exercise in the open air, and to preserve the mind free from tumultuous emotions, are the best preservatives of health.”

2. Every verb, except in the infinitive mood, or the participle, ought to have a nominative case, either expressed or implied: as, Awake; arise ;' that is, Awake

ye; arise ye.”

We shall bere add some examples of inaccuracy, in the use of the verb without its nominative case. “ As it hath pleased him of his goodness to give you safe deliverance, and hath preserved you in the great danger,” &c. The verb hath preserved," has here no nominative case, for it cannot be properly supplied by the preceding word, " him," which is in the objective case. It ought to be, "and as he hath preserved you ;" or rather, "and to preserve you." "If the calm in which he was born, and last

* The chief practical notes under each Rule, are regularly mimbered, in or. der to make them correspond to the examples in the volume of Exercises.

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ed so long, had continued ;" “and which lasted,” &c. " These we have extracted from an historian of undoubted credit, and are the same that were practised," &c. ; they are the same.' " A man whose inclinations led him to be corrupt, and had great abilities to manage the business ;" “ and who had," &c. “A cloud gathering in the north ; which we have helped to raise, and may quickly break in a storm upon our heads ;”. “and which may quckly."

3. Every nominative case, except the case absolute, and when an address is made to a person, should belong to some verb, either expressed or implied : as, 66 Who wrote This book ?”! “ James ;”? that is, “ James wrote it. " To whom thus Adam," that is," spoke.".

One or two instances of the improper use of the nominative case, without any verb, expressed or implied, to answer it, may be sufficient to illustrate the usefulness nf the preceding observation.

Which rule, if it had been observed, a neighbouring prince would have wanted a great deal of that incense which hath been offered up to him." The pronoun it is here the nominative case to the verb,“ observed ;” and which rule, is left by itself, à nominative case without any verb following it. This form of expression, though improper, is very common. It ought to be, If this rule had been observed," &c. "Man, though he has great variety of thonghts, and such from which others as well as himself might receive profit and delight, yet they are all within his own breast." In this sentence, the nominative man stands alone and unconnected with any verb, either expressed or implied. - It should be, Though man has great variety,” &c.

4. When a verb comes between two nouns, either of which may be understood as the subject of the affirmation, it may agree with either of them : but some regard must be had to that which is more, naturally the subject of it, as also to that which stands next to the verb: as, meat was locusts and wild honey ;'.“ A great cause of the low state of industry were the restraints put upon it;" The wages of sin is death."

5. When the nominative case has no personal tense of

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a verb, but is put before a participle, independently on the rest of the sentence, it is called the case absolute : as, “ Shame being lost; all virtue is lost ;?" That having been discussed long ago, there is no occasion to resume it.

As in the use of the case absolute, the case is, in En. glish, always the nominative, the following example is er roneous, in making it the objective. “ Šolomon was of this mind; and I have no doubt he made as wise and true proverbs, as any body has done since ; him only excepted, who was a much greater and wiser man than Solomon." It should be," he only excepted."

The nominative case is commonly placed before the verb; but sometimes it is put after the verb, if it is a simple tense ; and between the auxiliary, and the verb or participle, if a compound tense : as,

1st, When a question is asked, a command given, or a wish expressed: as, “Confidest thou in me ?"

“ Read thou;" "Mayst thou be happy!" “ Long live the King!"

2d, When a supposition is made without the conjunction if : as, “Were it not for this ;" " Had I been there." 3d, When a verb neuter is used: as,

“On a sudden appeared the king."

4th, When the verb is preceded by the adverbs, here, there, then, thence, hence, thus, &c.; as, " Here am I;" “ There was he slain ;" “ Then cometh the end ;" “Thence ariseth his grief;" “ Hence proceeds his anger;" “ Thus was the affair settled.”

5th, When a sentence depends on neither or nor, so as to be coupled with another sentence : as,

16 Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye

die." Some grammarians assert, that the phrases, as follows, as appears, form what are called impersonal verbs; and should, therefore, be confined to the singular number: as, “The arguments advanced were nearly as follows ;' “The positions were as appears incontrovertible :” that is,

as it follows," as it appears." If we give (say they) che sentence a different turn, and instead of as, say such as, the verb is no longer termed impersonal; but proper:

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