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RULES OF SYNTAX,
WITH ADDITIONAL EXERCISES IN FALSE SYNTAX.
The third part of Grammar is SYNTAX, which treats of the agreement and government of words, and of their proper arrangement in a sentence. SYNTAX Consists of two parts, Concord and Government.
CONCORD is the agreement which one word has with another, in gender, person, number, or case. For the illustration of agreement and government, see pages 52, and 53.
For the definition of a sentence, and the transposition of its words and members, see pages 119, 124, 128, and 167.
The principal parts of a simple sentence are the nominative or subject, the verb or attribute, or word that makes the affirmation, and the object, or thing affected by the action of the verb; as, "A wise man governs his passions." In this sentence, man is the subject; governs, the attribute; and passions the object.
A PHRASE is two or more words rightly put to gether, making sometimes a part of a sentence, and sometimes a whole sentence.
ELLIPSIS is the omission of some word or words, in order to avoid disagreeable and unnecessary repetitions, and to express our ideas concisely, and with strength and elegance.
In this recapitulation of the rules, Syntax is presented in a condensed form, many of the essential NOTES being omitted. This is a necessary consequence of my general plan, in which Etymology and Syntax, you know, are blended. Hence, to
acquire a complete knowledge of Syntax from this work, yo must look over the whole.
You may now proceed and parse the following additional ex ercises in false Syntax; and, as you analyze, endeavour to correct all the errours without looking at the Key. If, in correcting these examples, you should be at a loss in assigning the reasons why the constructions are erroneous, you can refer to the manner adopted in the foregoing pages.
The article a or an agrees with nouns in the singular number only, individually or collectively; as, "A star, an eagle, a score, a thousand."
The definite article the belongs to nouns in the singular or plural number; as, "The star, the stars; the hat, the hats."
NOTE 1. A nice distinction in the meaning is sometimes effected by the use or omission of the article a. If I say, "He behaved with a little reverence," my meaning is positive. But if I say, "He behaved with little reverence," my meaning is negative. By the former, I rather praise a person; by the latter, I dispraise him. When I say, "There were few men with him," I speak diminutively, and mean to represent them as inconsiderable; whereas, when I say, "There were a few men with him," I evidently intend to make the most of them.
2. The indefinite article sometimes has the meaning of every or each; as, "They cost five shillings a dozen;" that is, 'every dozen.'
"A man he was to all the country dear,
"And passing rich with forty pounds a year!" that is, every year.'
3. When several adjectives are connected, and express the various qualities of things individually different, though alike in name, the article should be repeated; but when the qualities all belong to the same thing or things, the article should not be repeated. "A black and a white calf," signifies, A black calf, and a white calf; but "A black and white calf," describes the two colours of one calf.
The nominative case governs the verb; as, "I learn, thou learnest, he learns, they learn."
The verb must agree with its nominative in number and person; as, "The bird sings, the birds sing, thou singest."
NOTE 1. Every verb, when it is not in the infinitive mood, must have a nominative, expressed or implied; as, "Awake, arise;" that is, Awake ye arise ye.
variety of the productions of genius, like that ons of nature, are without limit.
riety of blessings have been conferred upon us. u cannot heal him, it is true, but thou may do som ve him.
ety and virtue consist the happiness of man. thou, my voice inspire,
Who touched Isaiah's hallowed lips with fire. Will martial flames for ever fire thy mind, And never, never be to Heaven resigned? vas a man whose inclinations led him to be corru eat abilities to manage the business.
The crown of virtue is peace and honour. chief occupation and enjoyment were controversy
en an address is made, the noun or pro ssed, is put in the nominative case ind as," Plato, thou reasonest well;" said my uncle Toby."
1. A noun is independent, when it has no verb to agree wi erjections require the objective case of a pronoun of the firs m, but the nominative of a noun or pronoun of the second as, "Ah! me; Oh! thou; O! virtue."
noun or pronoun placed before a parti eing independent of the rest of the is in the nominative case absolute me being lost, all virtue is lost;" "Th
NOTE. Every nominative case, except the case absolute and independent, should belong to some verb expressed or understood; as, "To whom thus, Adam;" that is, epoke.
Or won to what may work his utter loss,
Note. Two substantives, when they come together, and do not signify the same thing, the former must be in the genitive
Virtue, however it may be neglected for a time, men are so constituted as ultimately to acknowledge and respect genuine merit.
Two or more nouns, or nouns and pronouns, signifying the same thing, are put, by apposition, in the same case; as, "Paul the apostle," Joram the king" "Solomon, the son of David, king of Israel, wrote many proverbs."
NOTE. A noun is sometimes put in apposition with a sentence; as, "The sheriff has just seized and sold his valuable library—(which was) a misforture that greatly depressed him."
We ought to love God, he who created and sustains all things
The pronoun he in this sentence, is improperly used in the nominative case. It is the object of the action of the transitive verb "love," and put by apposition with "God;" therefore it should be the objective case, him, according to Ruie 7. (Repeat the Rule, and correct the following.)
I saw Juliet and her brother, they that you visited.
Adams and Jefferson, them who died on the fourth of July, 1826, were both signers and the firm supporters of the Declaration of Independence.
Augustus the Roman emperor, him who succeeded Julius Cæsar, is variously described by historians.
Two or more nouns, or nouns and pronouns, in the singular number, connected by copulative conjunctions, must have verbs, nouns, and pronouns, agreeing with them in the plural; as, "Socrates and Plato were wise; they were emi nent philosophers."
NOTE 1. When each or every relates to two or more nominatives in the singular, although connected by a copulative, the verb must agree with each of them in the singular; as, "Every leaf, and every twig, and every drop of water, teems with life."
2. When the singular nominative of a complex sentence, has another noun joined to it with a preposition, it is customary to put the verb and pronoun agreeing with it, in the singular; as, "Prosperity with humility, renders is possessor truly amiable;" "The General, also, in conjunction with the officers, has applied for redress."
Coffee and sugar grows in the West Indies: it is exported in large quantities.
Two singular nouns coupled together, form a plural idea. The verb grows is improper, because it expresses the action of both its nominatives, "coffee and sugar," which two nominatives are connected by the copulative conjunction, and; therefore the verb should be plural, grow; and then it would "agree with coffee and sugar, according to Rule 8. (Repeat the Rule.) The pronoun it, as it represents both the nouns, "coffee and sugar," ought also to be plural, they, agreeably to Rule 8. The sentence should be written thus, "Coffee and sugar grow in the West Indies: they are exported in large quantities."
Time and tide waits for no man.
Patience and diligence, like faith, removes mountains.
Wisdom, virtue, happiness, dwells with the golden mediocrity. The planetary system, boundless space, and the immense ocean, affects the mind with sensations of astonishment.
What signifies the counsel and care of preceptors, when you think you have no need of assistance?
Their love, and their hatred, and their envy, is now perished. Why is whiteness and coldness in snow?
Obey the commandment of thy father, and the law of thy mother: bind it continually upon thy heart.
Pride and vanity always render its possessor despicable in the eyes of the judicious.
There is errour and discrepance in the schemes of the orthoepists, which shows the impossibility of carrying them into effect.
EXAMPLES FOR THE NOTE.
Every man, woman, and child, were numbered.
Not proper; for, although and couples things together so as to present the whole at one view, yet every has a contrary effect: it distributes them, and brings each separately and singly under consideration. Were numbered is therefore improper. It should be, "was numbered," in the singular, according to the Note. (Repeat it.)
When benignity and gentleness reign in our breasts, every person and every occurrence are beheld in the most favourable light.