Page images

from the pronouns with which they now coalesce, for all practical purposes, it is sufficient for us to know, that, in the present application of these pronouns, they invariably stand for, not only the person possessing, but, also the thing possessed, which gives them a compound character. They may, therefore, be properly denominated COMPOUND PERSONAL PRONOUNS and as they always perform a double othee in a sentence by representing two other words, and, consequently, including two cases, they should, like the compound relative what, be parsed as two words. Thus, in the examplo, “ You may imagine what kind of faith theirs was,” theirs is a compound per sonal pronoun, equivalent to their faith. Their is a pronoun, a word used instead of a noun; personal, it personates the persons spoken of, under. stood; third pers. plur. numb, &c.--and in the possessive case, and governed. by “faith,” according to Rule 12. Faith is a noun, the name of a thing , &c. &c.—and in the nominative case to “was,” and governs it; Rule 3. Or, if we render the sentence thus, " You may imagine what kind of faith the faith of them* was,” faith would be in the nominative case to

was," and lhes would be in the objective case, and governed by “ of :" Rule 31.

Objections to this method of treating these pronouns, will doubtless be preferred by those who assert, that a noun is understood after these words and not represented by them. But this is assertion without proof; for, if a noun were understood, it might be supplied. If the question be put, whose book ? and the answer be, mine, ours, hers, or theirs, the word book is included in such answer. Were it not included, we might supply it, thus, mine book, ours book, hers book, and so on. This, however, we cannot do, for it would be giving a úouble answer : but when the question is answered by a noun in the possessive case, the word book is not included, but implied; as, Whose book ? John's, Richard's; that is, John's book; Richard's book. This view of the subject, without a parallel

, except in the compounds what, whoever and others, is respectfully submitted to the publick; believing, that those who approve of a critical analysis of words, will coincide with me. Should any still be disposed to treat these words so superficially as to rank them among the simple pronouns, let them answer the following interrogatory: If what, when compound, should be parsed as two words, why not mine, thine, his, hers, ours, yours, and theirs ?

5. Mine and thine, instead of my and thy are used in solemn style, before a word beginning with a vowel or silent h; as, “ Blot out all mine iniquities ;" and when thus used, they are not compound. His always has the same form, whether simple or compound; as, “ Give John his book; That desk is his.Her, when placed before a noun, is in the possessive case; as, Take her hat: when standing alone, it is in the objective case; as, Give the hat to her.

When shall have studied this lecture attentively, and com mitted the declension of the personal pionouns, you may commit the following


* In the note next preceding, it is asserted, that my, thy, his, her, our, your, and their, are personal pronouns. What can more clearly demonstrate the correctness of that assertion, than this latter construction of the word theirs ? All admit, that, in the construction, "The taith of them,” the word them is a personal pronoun: and for this conclusive reason :-it represents a noun understood. What, then, is their, in the phrase, “their faith?" Is it not obvious, that, if them is a personal pronoun, their must be, also ? for the latter represents the same noun as the former


is--a pronoun, and why?-personal, and why? person, and why?-gender and number, and why ?-RULE : case, and why ?-RULE.--De.

cline it)

There are many peculiarities to be observed in parsing pelsonal pronouns in their different persons; therefore, if you wish ever to parse them correctly, you must pay particular attention to the manner in which the following are analyzed. Now notice, particularly, and you will perceive that we apply only one Lule in parsing I and my, and two in parsing thou, him, and they.

66" I saw my friend.” I is a pronoun, a word used instead of a noun-personal, it represents the person speaking, understood-first person, it denotes the speaker-singular number, it implies but one--and in the nominative case, it represents the actor and subject of the verb “saw," and governs it, agreeably to Rule 3. The nom. case gov. the verb. Declined—first pers. sing. num. nom. I, poss. my or mine, obj. me. Plur. nom. we, poss. our or ours, obj. us.

My is a pronoun, a word used instead of a noun-personal, it personates the person speaking, understood—first pers. it denotes the speaker--sing. num. it implies but one -and in the possessive case, it denotes possession; it is governed by the noun “friend,” agreeably to Rule 12. A noun or pronoun in the possessive case, is governed by the noun-it possesses. Declin ed--first pers. sing. nom. I, poss. my or mine, obj. nie. Plur. nom. we, poss. our or ours, obj. us.

“Young man, thou hast deserted thy companion, and left him in distress.”

Thou is a pronoun, a word used instead of a noun-personal, it personates “man”-second person, it represents the person spoken to-mas. gend. sing. num. because the noun man” is for which it stands, according to

RULĘ 13. (Personal pronouns must agree with the nouns for which they stand in gender and number.

Thou is in the non. case, it represents the actor and subject of the verb “hast deserted," and governs it agreeably to RULE 3. The nom. case gou. the verb. Declined-sec. pers. sing. rum. nom. thou, poss. thy or thine, obj. thee. Plur. nom. ye cr you, poss. your or yours, obj. you.

Him is a pronoun, a word used instead o a noun--porsonal, it personates "companion"-third pers. it represents the person spoken of-mas. gend. sing. numb. because the noun

* companion" is for which it stands : Rule 13. Pers pro. fo. (Repeat the Rule.)-Him is in the objective case, the object of the action expressed by the active-transitive verb “hast left," and gov. by it: RULE 20. Active-trans, verbs gov. the obj. case. Declinedthird pers. mas. gend. sing. num. nom. he, poss. his, obj. him. Plur. nom. they, poss. their or theirs, obj. them.

“ Thrice I raised my voice, and called the chiefs to combat, but they dreaded the force of my arm.”

They is a pronoun, a word used instead of a noun-personal, it represents

" chief:"_third pers. it denotes the persons spoken of-mas. gend. plur. num. because tho noun

" chiefs" is for which it stands : Rule 13. Pers. Pron. &c. (Repeat the Rule.) It is the nom. case, it represents the actors and subject of the verb “ drcaded," and governs it: RULE 3. The Nom. case, gov. the verb. Declined-third pers. mas. gend. sing. numb. nom. he, poss. his, obj. him. Plur. nom. they poss. their or theirs, obj. them.

Note. We do not apply gender. in parsing the personal pronouns, (ex : cepting the third person singular,) if the nouns they represent are understood; and therefore we do not, in such instances, apply Rule 13. But when the noun is expressed, gender should be applied, and two Rules,

EXERCISES IN PARSING. I saw a man leading his horse slowly over the new bridge. My friends visit me very often at my father's office. We im prove ourselves by close application. Horace, thou learnest many lessons. Charles, you, by your diligence, make easy work of the task given you by your preceptor. Young ladies, you run over your lessons very carelessly. The stranger drove his horses too far into the water, and, in so doing, he drowned them.

Gray morning rose in the cast. A green narrow vale .appeared before us: its winding stream murmured through the grove. The dark host of Rothmar stood on its banks with their glittering spears. We fought along the vale. They fled. Rothinar sunk beneath my sword. Day was descending in the west, when I brought his arms to Crothar. The aged hero felt them with his hands : joy brightened his thoughts.

Note. Horace, Charles, and lalies, are of the second person, and nom. case independent : sce Rule 5, and Nute. The first you is used in the nom. poss. and obj. case.--It represents Charles, therefore it is singuiar in sense, although plural in form. "In the next example, you personifies ladies, therefore it is plural. Given is a perfect

participle. You following given, is govern. ed by to understood, according to Note 1, under Rule 32. Run over is a compound verb. And is a conjunction. The first its personates vale ; the second Its represents stream

You may now parse the following examples three times



"Juliet, retain her paper, and present yours.” Yours is a compound personal pronoun, representing both the possessor and the thing possessed, and is equivalent to your paper.

Your is a pronoun, a word used instead of a noun personal, it personates “Juliet”-second person, it represents the person spoken to-fem. gender, sing. number, (singular in sense, but plural in form,) because the noun Juliet is for which it stands: Rule 13. Pers. pron. fc.-your is in the possessive case, it denotes possession, and is governed by “paper,” according to Rule 12. A noun or pron. doc. (Repeat the Rule. and decline the pronoun.) Paper is a noun, the name of a thing-common, the name of a sort of things-neuter gender, it denotes a thing withont sex--third person, spoken of-sing. number, it implies but one--and in the obj. case, it is the object of the action expressed by the transitive verb “present," and governed by it: Rule 20.

Active-transitive verbs, govern the obj. case.

Note. Should it be objected, that yours does not mean your paper, any more than it means your book, your house, your any thing, let it be borne in mind, that pronouns have no definite meaning, like other words; but thcir particular signification is always dcterinined by the nouns they represent.

EXERCISES IN PARSING. Julia injured her book, and soiled mine : hers is better than mine. My friend sacrificed his fortune to secure yours: his deeds deserve roward ; yours merit disgrace. Henry's labours are past; thine are to come. We leave your forests of beasts for ours of men. My sword and yours are kin.

Note. She understood, is nominative to soiled, in the first example; and the substantive part of mine, after than, is nom, to is, understood: Rule 35. The verbs to secure and to come have no nominative. The pronouns mine, my, yours, thine, we, your, ours, any, and yours, personate nours understood.

REMARKS ON IT. For the want of a proper knowledge of this little pronoun it, many gram marians have been greatly puzzled how to dispose of it, or how to occount for its multiform, and, seemingly, contradictory characters. It is in great Jernand by writers of every description. They use it without ceremony; either in the nominative or objective case ; either to represent one person or thing, or more than one. It is applied to nouns in the masculine, feminine, or neuter gender, and, very frequently, it represents a member of a sentence, a whole sentence, or a number of sentences taken in a mass.

A little attention to its irue character, will, at once, strip it of all its mystery. It, formerly written hit, according to Il. Tooke, is the past participle of the Moeso-Gothick verb haiian. It means, the said, and, therefore, like its near relative that, meaning, the assumed, originally had no respect, in its ap. plication, to number, person, or gender. “It is a wholesome law;" i. e. the

said (law) is a wholesome law; or, that (law) is a wholesomo law the asa sumed (law) is a wholesome law. “It is the man; I helieve it to be them :" -The said (man) is the man; that (man) is the man: I believe the said (persons) to be them; I believe that persons (according to the ancient application of that) to be them. “ It happened on a summer's day, that many people were assembled,” &c.—Many people were assembled: it, that, or the said (fact or circumstance) happened on a summer's day..

It, according to its accepted meaning in modern times, is not referred to a noun understood after it, but is considered a substitute. * How is it with you?” that is, How is your state or condition ?It rains; It freezes; It is a hard winter;"!--The rain rains; The frost frosts or freezes ; The said (winter) is a hard winter. “It is delightful to see brothers and sisters living in uninterrupted love to the end of their days.” What is delightful ? To see brothers and sisters living in uninterrupted love to the end of their days. It, this thing, is delightful. It, then, stands for all that part of the sentence expresscd in italicks; and the sentence will adinit of the following construction ; “ 'To see brothers living in uninterrupted love to the end of their days, is delightful.”

OF ADJECTIVE PRONOUNS. (ADJECTIVE PRONOUNS, PRONOMINAL ADJECTIVES, or, more properly, SPECIFYING ADJECTIVES are a kind of adjectives which point out ncuns by some distinct specification,

Pronouns and adjectives are totally distinct in their cha racter. The former stand for nouns, and never belong to them; the latter belong to nouns, and never stand for them. Hence, such a thing as an adjective-pronoun cannot exist. Each, every, either, this, that, some, other, and the residue, are pure adjectives.

Those specifying adjectives commonly called Adjective Pronouns, may be divided into three sorts; the distributive, the demonstrative, and the indefinite. They are all known by the lists.

1. The distributive adjectives are those that denote the persons or things that make up a number, each taken separately and singly. List. each, every, either, and sometimes neither; as, “ Each of his brothers is in a favourable situa

Every man must account for himself;" " Neither of them is industrious."

These distributives are words which are introduced into language in its refined state, in order to express the nicest shades and colours of thought. Man must account for himself;" " Mankind lust account for themselves, 4 w Ay ven must ac.


« PreviousContinue »