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A double conjunctive, in two correspondent clauses of a sentence, is sometimes made use of: as, “ Had he done this, he had escaped ;"?
“ Had the limitations on the prerogative been, in his time, quite fixed and certain, his integrity had made him regard as sacred, the boundaries of the constitution.” The sentence in the common form would have read thus: “If the limitations on the prerogative had been, &c. his integrity would have made him regard," &c.
The particle as, when it is connected with the pronoun such, bas the force of a relative pronoun: as, “ Let such as presume to advise others, look well to their own conduct;" which is equivalent to, “Let them who presume," &c. But when used by itself, this particle is frequently, if not always, to be considered as a conjunction, or perhaps as an adverb.
Some respectable grammarians suppose, that the word as is always a pronoun: and that, in every situation, it has the meaning of it, that, or which. They would, however, find it difficult to prove, that, in the following sentences, this word has the meaning of any one of those pronouns. “As to those persons, I must say, as it is due to them, that they were as disinterested as their opponents.” “Love thy neighbour as thyself.” “ Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors." “ And as Paul was long preaching, Eutychus sunk down.”
Our language wants a conjunction adapted to familiar style, equivalent to notwithstanding. The words for all that, seem to be too low. - The word was in the mouth of every one, but for all that, the subject may still be a secret."
In regard that is solemn and antiquated; because would do much better in the following sentence. “It cannot be otherwise in regard that the French prosody differs from that of every other language."
The word except is far preferable to other than. “It admitted of no effectual cure other than amputation.” Except is also to be preferred to all but. “ They were happy all but the stranger.”
In the two following phrases, the conjunction as is improperly omitted ; " Which nobody presumes, or is so sanguine to hope.” “I must, however, be so just , to own.”
The conjunction that is often properly omitted, and understood : as, “ I beg you would come to me;" “See thou do it not;" instead of “ that you would," " that thou do.” But in the following and many similar phrases, this conjunction were much better inserted : “ Yet it is reason the memory of their virtues remain to posterity.". It should be, "yet it is just that the memory," &c.
When the qualities of different things are compared, the latter noun or pronoun is not governed by the conjunction than or as, but agrees with the verb, or is governed by the verb or the preposition, expressed or understood: as, “ Thou art wiser than I;" that is, “than I am." " They loved him more than me;" i. e. “ more than they loved me.”
. • The sentiment is well expressed by Plato, but much better by Solomon than him;" that is, “ than
See Vol. ii. Part 3. Exercises. Chap. 1. Rule 20.
The propriety or impropriety of many phrases, in the preceding as well as in some other forms, may be discovered, by supplying the words that are not expressed; which will be evident from the following instances of erroneous construction. 6. He can read better than me." “He is as good as her." 6 Whether I be present or no." “ Who did this? Me." By supplying the words understood in each of these phrases, their impropriety and governing rule will appear: as, “ Better than I can read ;” “ As good as she is ;" “ Present or not present;" “1 did it."
1. By not attending to this rule, many errors have been committed: a number of which is subjoined, as a further caution and direction to the learner. "Thou art a much greater loser than me by his death." “She suffers hourly more than me.” “ We contributed a third more than the Dutch, who were obliged to the same proportion more than us.” “King Charles, and more than him, the duke and the
. popish faction, were at liberty to form new schemes.” “The drift of all his sermons was, to prepare the Jews for the reception of a prophet mightier than him, and whose shoes he was not worthy to bear.” 6* It was not the work of so eminent an author, as him to whom it was first imputed.” “A stone is heavy, and the sand weighty ; but a fool's wrath is heavier than them both.” “ If the king give us leave, we may perform the office as well as them that do." In these passages it ought to be, “ ), we, he, they, respectively.”
When the relative who immediately follows than, it seems to form an exception to the 20th rule ; for in that connexion,
the relative must be in the objective case: as, “ Alfred, than sohom, a greater king never reigned,” &c. “Beelzebub, than whom, Satan excepted, none higher sat,” &c. It is reniarkable that in such instances, if the personal pronoun were used, it would be in the nominative case; as, “A greater king never reigned than he," that is, " than he was," ** Beelzezub, than he," &c.; that is, “than he sat." The phrase than whom, is, however, avoided by the best modern writers.
Some grammarians suppose that the words than and but are sometimes used as prepositions, and govern the objective case. They adopt this idea from the difficulty, if not impossibility as they conceive, of explaining many phrases, on any other principle. This plea of necessity appears, however, tó be groundless. The principle of supplying the ellipsis is, we think, sufficient to resolve every case, in which than or but occurs, without wresting these words from their true nature, and giving them the character of prepositions. In the preceding paragraphs under this Rule, we have exhibited a number of examples, showing that the supply of the ellipsis sufficiently explains their construction. But as these may be deemed obvious cases, we shall select some, which
to be more difficult in their developement. The following are of this nature. “I saw nobody but him;" “ No person but he was present;" “More persons than they saw the action;"
? 66 The secret was communicated to more men than him;"> * This trade enriched some people more than them.” All these sentences may be explained, on the principle of supplying the ellipsis, in the following manner. In the first, we might say, “ saw nobody, but I saw him ;" or, “ I saw nobody, but him I saw ;' in the second,
- None was present, but he was present ;” in the third, " More persons than they were, saw the action," or, “ More than these persons were, saw the action;" in the fourth, “The secret was communicated to more persons than to him," in the fifth, “ This trade enriched some people more than it enriched them.'
supply of the ellipsis certainly gives an uncouth appearance to these sentences : but this circumstance forms no solid objection to the truth of the principle for which we contend. Most of the idioms in a language could not be literally accounted for, but by very awkward modes of expression.
If the rule which has been recommended, effectually answers the purpose of ascertaining the cases of nouns and pronouns, in connexion with the words than and but, why should we have recourse to the useless expedient of changing these words into other parts of speech; especially when this expedient would often produce ambiguity, and lead into error? That it would have this effect might be shown in
numerous instances. One, however, will be sufficient. “If we use the word than as a preposition, we should say, 'I love her better than him,' whether it be meant, I love her better than I love him,' or, I love her better than he does.' By using the word as a conjunction, the ambiguity is prevented. For, if the former sentiment is implied, we say, "I love her better than him ;' that is, than I love him ;' if the latter, we say, 'I love her better than he,' that is, “than he loves her.'»
If it should be said, that but and than may be properly supplied by the prepositions except and besides, and that therefore the substitution of the latter for the former must be allowable; we reply, that, in numerous instances, these words cannot be properly substituted for each other. But if this could be universally done, it might still be said, that equivalence of meaning, by no means implies identity of grammatical construction. This, we think, has been fully proved in the sixth Chapter of Etymology, Section 1, pages 61, 62.
· From what has been advanced on this subject, the following rule may be laid down. “When the pronoun following but or than, has exactly the same bearing and relation as the preceding noun or pronoun has, with regard to other parts of the sentence, it must have the same grammatical construction." By applying this rule to the various examples already exhibited, the reader will, we doubt not, perceive its propriety and use.
That the student may be still further assisted, in his endeavours to discover the true grammatical construction of a noun or pronoun following but or thun, it may not be improper to observe, that the 18th Rule of Syntax may be considered as subsidiary to the preceding rule, and to the principle of supplying the ellipsis. Thus, in the expression, “ I saw
, nobody but him," nobody is in the objective case, governed by the verb saw; and him is in the same case, because conjunctions, according to Rule the 18th, connect the same cases of nouns and pronouns. In the phrase, “ Nobody but he was present,
," he is in the nominative case, because it is connected by the conjunction but, with the noun nobody, which is in the nominative. The other sentences, in which the conjunction than is used, may be construed in the same manner.
If the 18tb Rule of Syntax should not appear to apply to every example, which has been produced in this discussion, nor to others which might be adduced ; it will be found, on strict examination, that the supposed exceptions are, in fact, sentences which do not come within the reason and limitation of the rule. Thus, in the sentence, “I have a greater respect for them than he," the pronoun he is connected by the conjunction than with the pronoun them: and yet they are
not put in the same case; because they have not the same bearing and relation, with regard to the rest of the sentence; which is requisite according to rule 18, and its explanatory note. See the Note at page 204.
The two latter rules are founded on the principle of supplying the ellipsis, and are intimately connected with it: they in fact derive all their authority from that principle. They may, however, 'be of use to the student, by presenting the subject in different points of view: some of them may strike his attention more than others, and lead him to a full developement of the subject.
To avoid disagreeable repetitions, and to express our ideas in few words, an ellipsis, or omission of some words, is frequently admitted. Instead of saying, “He was a learned man, he was a wise man, and he was a good man;" we make use of the ellipsis, and say, “ He was a learned, wise, and good man.
When the omission of words would obscure the sentence, weaken its foree, or be attended with an impropriety, they must be expressed. In the sentence; "We are apt to love who love us,” the word them should be supplied. " A beautiful field and trees,” is not proper language. It should be, “ Beautiful fields and trees;" or, “ A beautiful field and fine trees."
See Vol. ii. Part. 3. Exercises. Chap. 1. Rule 21. Almost all compounded sentences, are more or less elliptical; some examples of which may be seen under the different parts of speech.
66 The day
1. The ellipsis of the article is thus used: “A man, woman, and child ;" that is, “a man, a woman, and a child.' “ A house and garden;" that is, “ A house and a garden,” “The sun and moon;" that is, “ the sun and the moon.” and hour;' that is, “ the day and the hour.” In all these instances, the article being once expressed, the repetition of it becomes unnecessary.
There is, however, an exception to this observation, when some peculiar emphasis requires a repetition; as in the following sentence : “ Not only the year, but Vol.1.