Part 52 out of 54
words and thoughts rather more accurately, thus: "I shall now give you two
passages; and request you to point out which words are monosyllables;
which, dissyllables; which, trissyllables; and which, polysyllables."
 The relative _what_, being equivalent to _that which_, sometimes has
the demonstrative word _that_ set after it, by way of pleonasm; as, "_What_
I tell you in darkness, _that_ speak ye in light, and _what_ ye hear in the
ear, _that_ preach ye upon the house-tops."--_Matt._, x, 27. In _Covell's
Digest_, this text is presented as "_false syntax_," under the new and
needless rule, "Double relatives always supply two cases."--_Digest of E.
Gram._, p. 143. In my opinion, to strike out the word _that_, would greatly
weaken the expression: and so thought our translators; for no equivalent
term is used in the original.
 As for Butler's method of parsing these words by _always recognizing
a noun as being_ "UNDERSTOOD" _before them_,--a method by which, according
to his publishers notice, "The ordinary unphilosophical explanation of this
class of words is discarded, and a simple, intelligible, common-sense view
of the matter now _for the first time_ substituted,"--I know not what
novelty there is in it, that is not also just so much _error_. "Compare,"
says he, "these two sentences: 'I saw _whom_ I wanted to see;' 'I saw what
I wanted to see. If _what_ in the latter is equivalent to _that which_ or
_the thing which, whom_, in the former is equivalent to _him whom_, or _the
person whom_."--_Butler's Practical Gram._, p. 51. The former example being
simply elliptical of the antecedent, he judges the latter to be so too; and
infers, "that _what_ is nothing more than a relative pronoun, and includes
nothing else."--_Ib._ This conclusion is not well drawn, because the two
examples are _not analogous_; and whoever thus finds "that _what_ is
nothing more than a relative," ought also to find it is something less,--a
mere adjective. "I saw _the person whom_ I wanted to see," is a sentence
that _can scarcely spare_ the antecedent and retain the sense; "I saw
_what_ I wanted to see," is one which _cannot receive_ an antecedent,
without changing both the sense and the construction. One may say, "I saw
what _things_ I wanted to see;" but this, in stead of giving _what_ an
_antecedent_, makes it an _adjective_, while it _retains the force of a
relative_. Or he _may insert_ a noun before _what_, agreeably to the
solution of Butler; as, "I saw _the things_, what I wanted to see:" or, if
he please, both before and after; as, "I saw _the things_, what _things_ I
wanted to see." But still, in either case, _what_ is no "simple relative;"
for it here seems equivalent to the phrase, _so many as_. Or, again, he may
omit the comma, and say, "I saw _the thing_ what I wanted to see;" but
this, if it be not a vulgarism, will only mean, "I saw _the thing to be_
what I wanted to see." So that this method of parsing the pronoun what, is
manifestly no improvement, but rather a perversion and misinterpretation.
But, for further proof of his position, Butler adduces instances of what he
calls "_the relative_ THAT _with the antecedent omitted_. A few examples of
this," he says, "will help us to ascertain the nature of _what_. 'We speak
_that_ we do know,' _Bible_. [_John_, iii, 11.] 'I am _that_ I am.'
_Bible_. [_Exod._, iii, 14.] 'Eschewe _that_ wicked is.' _Gower_. 'Is it
possible he should know what he is, and be _that_ he is?' Shakespeare.
'Gather the sequel by _that_ went before.' _Id._ In these examples,"
continues he, "_that_ is a relative; and is _exactly synonymous_ with
_what_. No one would contend that _that_ stands for itself and its
antecedent at the same time. The antecedent is omitted, _because it is
indefinite_, OR EASILY SUPPLIED."--_Butler's Practical Gram._, p. 52;
_Bullions's Analytical and Practical Gram._, p. 233. Converted at his
wisest age, by these false arguments, so as to renounce and gainsay the
doctrine taught almost universally, and hitherto spread industriously by
himself, in the words of Lennie, that, "_What_ is a compound relative,
including both the relative and the antecedent," Dr. Bullions now most
absurdly urges, that, "The truth is, _what_ is a _simple_ relative, having,
wherever used, _like all other relatives_, BUT ONE CASE; but * * * that it
always refers to a _general antecedent, omitted_, BUT EASILY SUPPLIED _by
the mind_," though "_not_ UNDERSTOOD, _in the ordinary sense_ of that
expression."--_Analyt. and Pract. Gram._ of 1849, p. 51. Accordingly,
though he differs from Butler about this matter of "_the ordinary sense_,"
he cites the foregoing suggestions of this author, with the following
compliment: "These remarks appear to me _just_, and _conclusive on this
point_."--_Ib._, p. 233. But there must, I think, be many to whon they will
appear far otherwise. These elliptical uses of _that_ are all of them bad
or questionable English; because, the ellipsis being such as may be
supplied in two or three different ways, the true construction is doubtful,
the true meaning not exactly determined by the words. It is quite as easy
and natural to take "_that_" to be here a demonstrative term, having the
relative _which_ understood after it, as to suppose it "a relative," with
an antecedent to be supplied before it. Since there would not be the same
uncertainty, if _what_ were in these cases substituted for _that_, it is
evident that the terms are _not_ "_exactly synonymous_;" but, even if they
were so, exact synonymy would not evince a sameness of construction.
 See this erroneous doctrine in Kirkham's Grammar, p. 112; in Wells's,
p. 74; in Sanborn's, p. 71, p. 96, and p. 177; in Cooper's, p. 38; in O. B.
Peirce's, p. 70. These writers show a great fondness for this complex mode
of parsing. But, in fact, no pronoun, not even the word _what_, has any
double construction of cases from a real or absolute necessity; but merely
because, the noun being suppressed, yet having a representative, we choose
rather to understand and parse its representative doubly, than to supply
the ellipsis. No pronoun includes "both the antecedent and the relative,"
by virtue of its own _composition_, or of its own derivation, as a word. No
pronoun can properly be called "_compound_" merely because it has a double
construction, and is equivalent to two other words. These positions, if
true, as I am sure they are, will refute sundry assertions that are
contained in the above-named grammars.
 Here the demonstrative word _that_, as well as the phrase _that
matter_, which I form to explain its construction, unquestionably refers
back to Judas's confession, that he had sinned; but still, as the word has
not the connecting power of a relative pronoun, its true character is
_that_ of an adjective, and not _that_ of a pronoun. This pronominal
adjective is very often mixed with some such ellipsis, and _that_ to repeat
the import of various kinds of words and phrases: as, "God shall help her,
and _that_ right early."--_Psal._, xlvi, 5. "Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud,
and _that_ your brethren."--l Cor., vi, 8. "I'll know your business, _that_
 Dr. Bullions has undertaken to prove, "That the word AS should not be
considered a relative in any circumstances." The force of his five great
arguments to this end, the reader may well conceive of, when he has
compared the following one with what is shown in the 22d and 23d
observations above: "3. As _can never be used as a substitute for another
relative pronoun, nor another relative pronoun as a substitute for it_. If,
then, it is a relative pronoun, it is, to say the least, a very
unaccommodating one."--_Bullions's Analytical and Practical Gram. of_ 1849,
 The latter part of this awkward and complex rule was copied from
Lowth's Grammar, p. 101. Dr. Ash's rule is, "_Pronouns_ must _always agree_
with the _nouns_ for which they _stand_, or to which they _refer_, in
_Number, person_, and _gender_."--_Grammatical Institutes_, p. 54. I quote
this _exactly as it stands_ in the book: the Italics are his, not mine.
Roswell C. Smith appears to be ignorant of the change which Murray made in
his fifth rule: for he still publishes as Murray's a principle of concord
which the latter rejected as early as 1806: "RULE V. Corresponding with
Murray's Grammar, RULE V. _Pronouns must agree with the nouns for which
they stand, in gender, number_, AND PERSON."--_Smith's New Gram._, p. 130.
So _Allen Fisk_, in his "Murray's English Grammar Simplified," p. 111;
_Aaron M. Merchant_, in his "_Abridgment_ of Murray's English Grammar,
Revised, _Enlarged_ and Improved," p. 79; and the _Rev. J. G. Cooper_, in
his "Abridgment of Murray's English Grammar," p. 113; where, from the
titles, every reader would expect to find the latest doctrines of Murray,
and not what he had so long ago renounced or changed.
 L. Murray's Gram., 8vo, p. 51; 12mo, 51; 18mo, 22; D. Adams's, 37;
Alger's, 21; Bacon's, 19; Fisk's, 20; Kirkham's, 17; Merchant's Murray, 35;
Merchant's American Gram., 40; F. H. Miller's Gram., 26; Pond's, 28; S.
Putnam's, 22; Russell's, 16; Rev. T. Smith's, 22.
 Dr. Crombie, and some others, represent I and thou, with their
inflections, as being "masculine and feminine." Lennie, M'Culloch, and
others, represent them as being "masculine or feminine." But, if either of
them can have an antecedent that is _neuter_, neither of these views is
strictly correct. (See Obs. 5th, above.) Mackintosh says, "We use _our,
your, their_, in speaking of a thing or things belonging to plural nouns of
any gender."--_Essay on English Gram._, p. 149. So William Barnes says,
"_I, thou, we, ye_ or _you_, and _they_, are of _all_ genders,"--
_Philosophical Gram._, p. 196.
 "It is perfectly plain, then, that _my_ and _mine_ are but different
forms of the same word, as are _a_ and _an_. _Mine_, for the sake of
euphony, or from custom, stands for the possessive case without a noun; but
must be changed for _my_ when the noun is expressed: and _my_, for a
similar reason, stands before a noun, but must be changed for _mine_ when
the noun is dropped. * * * _Mine_ and _my, thine_ and _thy_, will,
therefore, be considered in this book, as different forms of the possessive
case from _I_ and _Thou_. And the same rule will be extended to _her_ and
_hers, our_ and _ours, your_ and _yours, their_ and _theirs_."--_Barnard's
Analytic Grammar_, p. 142.
 It has long been fashionable, in the ordinary intercourse of the
world, to substitute the plural form of this pronoun for the singular
through all the cases. Thus, by the figure ENALLAGE, "_you are_," for
instance, is commonly put for "_thou art_." See Observations 20th and 21st,
below; also Figures of Syntax, in Part IV.
 The original nominative was _ye_, which is still the only nominative
of the solemn style; and the original objective was _you_, which is still
the only objective that our grammarians in general acknowledge. But,
whether grammatical or not, _ye_ is now very often used, in a familiar way,
for the objective case. (See Observations 22d and 23d, upon the declensions
of pronouns.) T. Dilworth gave both cases alike: "_Nom_. Ye _or_ you;"
"_Acc._ [or _Obj._] Ye _or_ you."--His _New Guide_, p. 98. Latham gives
these forms: "_Nom._ ye _or_ you; _Obj._ you or ye."--_Elementary Gram._,
p. 90. Dr. Campbell says, "I am inclined to prefer that use which makes
_ye_ invariably the nominative plural of the personal pronoun _thou_, and
_you_ the accusative, when applied to an actual plurality."--_Philosophy of
Rhetoric_, p. 174. Professor Fowler touches the case, rather blindly, thus:
"Instead of the true nominative YE, we use, with few exceptions, _the
objective case_; as, 'YOU _speak_;' 'YOU _two are speaking_.' In this we
_substitute_ one case _for_ another."--_Fowler's E. Gram._, 8vo, 1850,
Sec.478. No other grammarian, however, discards _you_ as a nominative of
"actual plurality;" and the present casual practice of putting _ye_ in the
objective, has prevailed to some extent for at least two centuries: as,
"Your change approaches, when all these delights
Will vanish and deliver _ye_ to woe."
--_Milton_, P. L., B. iv, l. 367.
 Dr. Young has, in one instance, and with very doubtful propriety,
converted this pronoun into the _second person_, by addressing himself
"O _thou, myself I_ abroad our counsels roam
And, like ill husbands, take no care at home."
--_Love of Fame_, Sat. II, l. 271.
 The fashion of using the plural number for the singular, or _you_ for
_thou_, has also substituted _yourself_ for _thyself_, in common discourse.
In poetry, in prayer, in Scripture, and in the familiar language of the
Friends, the original compound is still retained; but the poets use either
term, according to the gravity or the lightness of their style. But
_yourself_, like the regal compound _ourself_, though apparently of the
singular number, and always applied to one person only, is, in its very
nature, an anomalous and ungrammatical word; for it can neither mean more
than one, nor agree with a pronoun or a verb that is singular. Swift indeed
wrote: "Conversation is but carving; carve for all, _yourself is
starving_." But he wrote erroneously, and his meaning is doubtful: probably
he meant, "To carve for all, is, _to starve yourself_." The compound
personals, when they are nominatives before the verb, are commonly
associated with the simple; as, "I _myself_ also _am_ a man."--_Acts_, x,
16. "That _thou thyself art_ a guide."--_Rom._, ii, 19. "If it stand, as
_you yourself_ still _do_"--_Shakspeare_. "That _you yourself_ are much
condemned."--_Id._ And, if the simple pronoun be omitted, the compound
still requires the same form of the verb; as, "Which way I fly is Hell;
_myself am_ Hell."--_Milton_. The following example is different: "I love
mankind; and in a monarchy myself _is_ all that I _can_ love."--_Life of
Schiller, Follen's Pref._, p. x. Dr. Follen objects to the British version,
"Myself _were_ all that I _could_ love;" and, if his own is good English,
the verb _is_ agrees with _all_, and not with _myself_. _Is_ is of the
third person: hence, "_myself is_" or, "_yourself is_," cannot be good
syntax; nor does any one say, "_yourself art_," or, "_ourself am_," but
rather, "_yourself are_:" as, "Captain, _yourself are_ the
fittest."--_Dryden_. But to call this a "_concord_," is to turn a third
part of the language upsidedown; because, by analogy, it confounds, to such
extent at least, the plural number with the singular through all our verbs;
that is, if _ourself_ and _yourself_ are singulars, and not rather plurals
put for singulars by a figure of syntax. But the words are, in some few
instances, written separately; and then both the meaning and the
construction are different; as, "Your _self_ is sacred, profane _it_
not."--_The Dial_, Vol. i, p. 86. Perhaps the word _myself_ above ought
rather to have been two words; thus, "And, in a monarchy, _my self is all_
that I can love." The two words here differ in person and case, perhaps
also in gender; and, in the preceding instance, they differ in person,
number, gender, and case. But the compound always follows the person,
number, and gender of its first part, and only the case of its last. The
notion of some grammarians, (to wit, of Wells, and the sixty-eight others
whom he cites for it,) that _you_ and _your_ are actually made singular by
usage, is demonstrably untrue. Do _we, our_, and _us_, become actually
singular, as often as a king or a critic applies them to himself? No: for
nothing can be worse syntax than, _we am, we was_, or _you was_, though
some contend for this last construction.
 _Whose_ is sometimes used as the possessive case of _which_; as, "A
religion _whose_ origin is divine."--_Blair_. See Observations 4th and 5th,
on the Classes of Pronouns.
 After _but_, as in the following sentence, the double relative _what_
is sometimes applied to persons; and it is here equivalent _to the friend
"Lorenzo, pride repress; nor hope to find
A friend, but _what_ has found a friend in thee."--_Young_.
 Of all these compounds. L. Murray very improperly says, "They are
_seldom used_, in modern style."--_Octavo Gram._, p. 54; also _Fisk's_, p.
65. None of them are yet obsolete, though the shorter forms seem to be now
generally preferred. The following suggestion of Cobbett's is erroneous;
because it implies that the shorter forms are innovations and faults; and
because the author carelessly speaks of them as _one thing only_: "We
_sometimes_ omit the _so_, and say, _whoever, whomever, whatever_, and even
_whosever_. _It is_ a mere _abbreviation_. The _so_ is understood: and, it
is best not to omit to write it."--_Eng. Gram._, 209. R. C. Smith
dismisses the compound relatives with three lines; and these he closes with
the following notion: "_They are not often used!_"--_New Gram._, p. 61.
 Sanborn, with strange ignorance of the history of those words,
teaches thus: "_Mine_ and _thine_ appear to have been formed from _my_ and
_thy_ by changing _y_ into _i_ and adding _n_, and then subjoining _e_ to
retain the long sound of the vowel."--_Analytical Gram._, p. 92. This false
notion, as we learn from his guillemets and a remark in his preface, he
borrowed from "Parkhurst's Systematic Introduction." Dr. Lowth says, "The
Saxon _Ic_ hath the possessive case _Min; Thu_, possessive _Thin; He_,
possessive _His_: From which our possessive cases of the same pronouns are
taken _without alteration_."--_Lowth's Gram._, p. 23.
 Latham, with a singularity quite remarkable, reverses this doctrine
in respect to the two classes, and says, "_My, thy, our, your, her_, and
_their_ signify possession, because they are possessive cases. * * * _Mine,
thine, ours, yours, hers, theirs_, signify possession for a different
reason. They partake of the nature of _adjectives_, and in all the allied
languages are declined as such."--_Latham's Elementary E. Gram._, p. 94.
Weld, like Wells, with a few more whose doctrine will be criticised
by-and-by, adopting here an other odd opinion, takes the former class only
for forms of the possessive case; the latter he disposes of thus: "_Ours,
yours, theirs, hers_, and generally _mine_ and _thine_, are POSSESSIVE
PRONOUNS, used in either the _nominative or objective_ case,"--_Weld's
Gram., Improved Ed._, p. 68. Not only denying the possessives with ellipsis
to be instances of the possessive case, but stupidly mistaking at once two
dissimilar things for a third which is totally unlike to either,--i. e.,
assuming together for _substitution_ both an _ellipsis_ of one word and an
_equivalence_ to two--(as some others more learned have very strangely
done--) he supposes all this class of pronouns to have forsaken every
property of their legitimate roots,--their person, their number, their
gender, their case,--and to have assumed other properties, such as belong
to "the thing possessed!" In the example, "_Your_ house is on the plain,
_ours_ is on the hill," he supposes _ours_ to be of the third person,
singular number, neuter gender, and nominative case; and not, as it plainly
is, of the first person, plural number, masculine gender, and possessive
case. Such parsing should condemn forever any book that teaches it.
 This word should have been _numerals_, for two or three reasons. The
author speaks of the _numeral adjectives_; and to say "the _numbers_ must
agree in _number_ with their substantives," is tautological--G. Brown.
 Cardell assails the common doctrine of the grammarians on this point,
with similar assertions, and still more earnestness. See his _Essay on
Language_, p. 80. The notion that "these _pretended possessives_ [are]
uniformly used as _nominatives_ or _objectives_"--though demonstrably
absurd, and confessedly repugnant to what is "_usually considered_" to be
their true explanation--was adopted by Jaudon, in 1812; and has recently
found several new advocates; among whom are Davis, Felch, Goodenow, Hazen,
Smart, Weld, and Wells. There is, however, much diversity, as well as much
inaccuracy, in their several expositions of the matter. Smart inserts in
his declensions, as the only forms of the possessive case, the words of
which he afterwards speaks thus: "The following _possessive cases_ of the
personal pronouns, (See page vii,) _must be called_ PERSONAL PRONOUNS
POSSESSIVE: _mine, thine, his, hers, ours, yours, theirs_. For these words
are always used _substantively_, so as to include the meaning of some noun
in the third person singular or plural, in the nominative or the objective
ease. Thus, if _we are speaking_ of books, and say [,] '_Mine_ are here,'
_mine_ means _my books_, [Fist] and it must be deemed a personal pronoun
_possessive_ in the _third_ person _plural_, and _nominative_ to the verb
_are_."--_Smart's Accidence_, p. xxii. If to say, these "_possessive cases_
must be called a _class_ of _pronouns_, used _substantively_, and deemed
_nominatives_ or _objectives_," is not absurd, then nothing can be. Nor is
any thing in grammar more certain, than that the pronoun "_mine_" can only
be used by the speaker or writer, to denote himself or herself as the owner
of something. It is therefore of the _first_ person, _singular_ number,
_masculine_ (or feminine) gender, and _possessive case_; being governed by
the name of the thing or things possessed. This name is, of course, always
_known_; and, if known and not expressed, it is "understood." For sometimes
a word is repeated to the mind, and clearly understood, where "it cannot
properly be" expressed; as, "And he came and sought _fruit_ thereon, and
found _none_."--_Luke_, xiii, 6. Wells opposes this doctrine, citing a
passage from Webster, as above, and also imitating his argument. This
author acknowledges three classes of pronouns--"personal, relative, and
interrogative;" and then, excluding these words from their true place among
personals of the possessive case, absurdly makes them a _supernumerary
class of possessive nominatives_ or _objectives_! "_Mine, thine, his_,
_ours, yours_, and _theirs_, are POSSESSIVE PRONOUNS, used in construction
either as _nominatives_ or _objectives_; as, 'Your pleasures are past,
_mine_ are to come.' Here the word _mine_, which is used as a substitute
for _my pleasures_, is _the subject_ of the verb _are_."--_Wells's School
Gram._, p. 71; 113 Ed., p. 78. Now the question to find the subject of the
verb _are_, is, "My _what_ are to come?" Ans. "_pleasures_." But the author
proceeds to argue in a note thus: "_Mine, thine_, etc. are often parsed as
pronouns in the possessive case, _and governed by nouns understood._ Thus,
in the sentence, 'This book is mine,' the _word mine_ is said to _possess
book_. That the word _book_ is _not here understood_, is obvious from the
fact, that, when it is supplied, the phrase becomes not '_mine_ book,' but
'_my_ book,' the pronoun being changed from _mine_ to _my_; so that we are
made, by this practice, to parse _mine_ as _possessing a word_ understood,
before which it cannot properly be used. The word _mine_ is here evidently
employed as a substitute for the two words, _my_ and _book_."--_Wells,
ibid._ This note appears to me to be, in many respects, faulty. In the
first place, its whole design was, to disprove what is true. For, bating
the mere difference of _person_, the author's example above is equal to
this: "Your pleasures are past, _W. H. Wells's_ are to come." The ellipsis
of "_pleasures_", is evident in both. But _ellipsis_ is not _substitution_;
no, nor is _equivalence. Mine_, when it suggests an ellipsis of the
governing noun, is _equivalent_ to _my and that noun_; but certainly, not
"_a substitute for the two words_." It is a substitute, or pronoun, for the
_name of the speaker or writer_; and so is _my_; both forms representing,
and always agreeing with, that name or person only. No possessive agrees
with what governs it; but every pronoun ought to agree with that for which
it stands. Secondly, if the note above cited does not aver, in its first
sentence, that the pronouns in question _are "governed by nouns
understood_," it comes much nearer to saying this, than a writer should who
meant to deny it. In the third place, the example, "This book is mine," is
not a good one for its purpose. The word "_mine_" may be regularly parsed
as a possessive, without supposing any ellipsis; for "_book_," the name of
the thing possessed, is given, and in obvious connexion with it. And
further, the matter affirmed is _ownership_, requiring _different cases_;
and not the _identity_ of something under different names, which must be
put in the _same case_. In the fourth place, to mistake regimen for
possession, and thence speak of _one word "as possessing" an other_, a mode
of expression occurring twice in the foregoing note, is not only
unscholarlike, but positively absurd. But, possibly, the author may have
meant by it, to ridicule the choice phraseology of the following Rule: "A
noun or pronoun in the possessive case, is governed by _the noun it
possesses_."--_Kirkham's Gram._, p. 181; _Frazee's_, 1844, p. 25.
 In respect to the _numbers_, the following text is an uncouth
exception: "Pass _ye_ away, _thou_ inhabitant of Saphir."--_Micah_, i, 11.
The singular and the plural are here strangely confounded. Perhaps the
reading should be, "Pass _thou_ away, _O_ inhabitant of Saphir." Nor is the
Bible free from _abrupt transitions_ from one number to the other, or from
one person to an other, which are neither agreeable nor strictly
grammatical; as, "Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, _ye which
[who]_ are spiritual, restore such _an [a]_ one in the spirit of meekness;
considering _thyself_, lest _thou_ also be tempted."--_Gal._, vi, 1. "_Ye_
that put far away the evil day, and cause the seat of violence to come
near; that lie upon beds of ivory, and stretch _themselves_ upon _their_
couches," &c--_Amos_, vi, 9.
 "The solemn style is used, chiefly, in the Bible and in prayer. The
Society of Friends _retain it in common parlance_. It consists in using
_thou_ in the singular number, and _ye_ in the plural, instead of using
_you_ in both numbers as in the familiar style. * * * The third person
singular [of verbs] ends with _th_ or _eth_, which affects only the present
indicative, and _hath_ of the perfect. The second person, singular, ends
with _st, est_, or _t_ only."--_Sanborn's Gram._, p. 58. "In [the] solemn
and poetic styles, _mine, thine_, and _thy_, are used; and THIS _is the
style adopted by the Friends' society_. In common discourse it appears very
stiff and affected."--_Bartlett's C. S. Man'l_, Part II, p. 72.
 "And of the History of his being _tost_ in a Blanket, _he saith_,
'Here, Scriblerus, _thou lessest_ in what _thou assertest_ concerning the
blanket: it was not a blanket, but a rug.--Curlliad, p. 25."--_Notes to
Pope's Dunciad_, B. ii, verse 3. A vulgar idea solemnly expressed, is
ludicrous. Uttered in familiar terms, it is simply vulgar: as, "_You lie_,
Scriblerus, in what _you say_ about the blanket."
 "Notwithstanding these verbal mistakes, the Bible, for the size of
it, is the most accurate grammatical composition that we have in the
English language. The authority of several eminent grammarians might be
adduced in support of this assertion, but it may be sufficient to mention
only that of Dr. Lowth, who says, 'The present translation of the Bible, is
_the best standard_ of the English language.'"--_Murray's Gram._, 8vo, p.
166. I revere the Bible vastly too much to be pleased with an imitation of
its peculiar style, in any man's ordinary speech or writing.--G. BROWN.
 "_Ye_, except in the solemn style, is _obsolete_; but it is used in
the language of tragedy, to express contempt: as, 'When _ye_ shall know
what Margaret knows, _ye_ may not be so thankful.' Franklin."--_W. Allen's
Gram._, p. 57. "The second person plural had _formerly_ YE _both in the
nominative and the objective._ This form is _now obsolete in the
objective_, and nearly obsolete in the nominative."--_Hart's Gram._, p. 55.
 So has Milton:--
"To waste it all myself, and leave _ye_ none!
So disinherited how would _you_ bless me!"--_Par. Lost_, B. x, l. 820.
 "The word _what_ is a _compound of two specifying adjectives_, each,
of course, referring to a noun, expressed or understood. It is equivalent
to _the which_; _that which_; _which that_; or _that that_; used also in
the plural. At different periods, and in different authors, it appears in
the varying forms, _tha qua, qua tha, qu'tha, quthat, quhat_, _hwat_, and
_what_. This word is found in other forms; but it is needless to multiply
them."--_Cardell's Essay on Language_, p. 86.
 This author's distribution of the pronouns, of which I have taken
some notice in Obs. 10th above, is remarkable for its inconsistencies and
absurdities. First he avers, "Pronouns are _generally_ divided into three
kinds, the _Personal_, the _Adjective_, and the _Relative_ pronouns. _They
are all known by the lists._"--_Kirkham's Gram._, p. 96. These short
sentences are far from being accurate, clear, or true. He should have made
the several kinds known, by a good definition of each. But this was work to
which he did not find himself adequate. And if we look to his _lists_ for
the particular words of each kind, we shall get little satisfaction. Of the
_Personal_ pronouns, he says, "There are _five_ of them; _I, thou, he_,
_she, it_."--_Ib._, p. 97. These are _simple_ words, and in their
declension they are properly multiplied to forty. (See _Ib._, p. 99.) Next
he seems to double the number, thus: "When _self_ is added to the personal
pronouns, as himself, myself, itself, themselves, &c. _they_ are called
_Compound Personal Pronouns_."--_Ib._, p. 99. Then he asserts that _mine_,
_thine, his, hers, ours, yours_, and _theirs_, are compounds of _ne_ or _s_
with _mi, thi, hi_, &c.: that their application invariably "gives them a
compound character:" and that, "They may, therefore, be properly
denominated _Compound Personal Pronouns_."--_Ib._, p. 101. Next he comes to
his _Adjective_ pronouns; and, after proving that he has grossly misplaced
and misnamed every one of them, he gives his lists of the three kinds of
these. His _Relative_ pronouns are _who, which_, and _that_. "_What_ is
generally a _compound_ relative."--_Ib._, p. 111. The compounds of _who,
which, and_ _what_, with _ever_ or _soever_, he calls "compound _pronouns_,
but not compound relatives."--_Ib._, pp. 110 and 112. Lastly he discovers,
that, "Truth and simplicity" have been shamefully neglected in this his
third section of pronouns; that, "Of the words called '_relatives_,' _who_
only is a pronoun, and this is strictly _personal_;" that, "It ought to be
classed with the personal pronouns;" and that, "_Which, that_, and _what_,
are always adjectives. They _never stand for_, but always _belong to_
nouns, either expressed or implied."--_Ib._, p. 114. What admirable
teachings are these!
 "It is now proper to give some _examples of the manner_ in which the
learners should be exercised, in order to improve their knowledge, and to
render it familiar to them. This is called _parsing_. The nature of the
subject, as well as the adaptation of it to learners, requires _that it
should be divided_ into two parts: viz. parsing, as it respects etymology
alone; and parsing, as it respects both etymology and syntax."--_Murray's
Gram., Octavo_, Vol. 1, p. 225. How very little real respect for the
opinions of Murray, has been entertained by these self-seeking magnifiers
and modifiers of his work!
What Murray calls "_Syntactical Parsing_" is sometimes called
"_Construing_," especially by those who will have _Parsing_ to be nothing
more than an etymological exercise. A late author says, "The practice of
_Construing_ differs from that of parsing, in the extension of its objects.
Parsing merely indicates the parts of speech and their accidents, but
construing searches for and points out their syntactical relations."--_D.
Blair's Gram._, p. 49.
Here the distinction which Murray judged to be necessary, is still more
strongly marked and insisted on. And though I see no utility in restricting
the word _Parsing_ to a mere description of the parts of speech with their
accidents, and no impropriety in calling the latter branch of the exercise
"_Syntactical Parsing_;" I cannot but think there is such a necessity for
the division, as forms a very grave argument against those tangled schemes
of grammar which do not admit of it. Blair is grossly inconsistent with
himself. For, after drawing his distinction between Parsing and Construing,
as above, he takes no further notice of the latter; but, having filled up
seven pages with his most wretched mode of "PARSING," adds, in an emphatic
note: "_The Teacher should direct the Pupil to_ CONSTRUE, IN THE SAME
MANNER, _any passage from_ MY CLASS-BOOK, _or other Work, at the rate of
three or four lines per day_."--_D. Blair's Gram._, p. 56.
 This is a comment upon the following quotation from Milton, where
_Hers_ for _His_ would be a gross barbarism:--
"Should intermitted vengeance arm again
_His_ red right hand to plague us."--_Par. Lost_, B. ii, l. 174.
 The Imperfect Participle, _when simple_, or when taken as one of the
four principal terms constituting the verb or springing from it, ends
_always_ in _ing_. But, in a subsequent chapter, I include under this name
the first participle of the passive verb; and this, in our language, is
always a compound, and the latter term of it does not end in _ing_: as, "In
all languages, indeed, examples are to be found of adjectives _being
compared_ whose signification admits neither intension nor
remission."--CROMBIE, _on Etym. and Syntax_, p. 106. According to most of
our writers on English grammar, the Present or Imperfect Participle Passive
is _always_ a compound of _being_ and the form of the perfect participle:
as, _being loved, being seen_. But some represent it to have _two_ forms,
one of which is always simple; as, "PERFECT PASSIVE, obeyed _or_ being
obeyed."--_Sanborn's Analytical Gram._, p. 55. "Loved _or_ being
loved."--_Parkhurst's Grammar for Beginners_, p. 11; _Greene's Analysis_,
p. 225. "Loved, or, _being_ loved."--_Clark's Practical Gram._, p. 83. I
here concur with the majority, who in no instance take the participle in
_ed_ or _en_, alone, for the Present or Imperfect.
 In the following example, "_he_" and "_she_" are converted into
verbs; as "_thou_" sometimes is, in the writings of Shakspeare, and others:
"Is it not an impulse of selfishness or of a depraved nature to _he_ and
_she_ inanimate objects?"--_Cutler's English Gram._, p. 16. Dr. Bullions,
who has heretofore published several of the worst definitions of the verb
anywhere extant, has now perhaps one of the best: "A VERB is a word used to
express the _act, being_, or _state_ of its subject. "--_Analyt. & Pract.
Gram._, p. 59. Yet it is not very obvious, that "_he_" and "_she_" are here
verbs under this definition. Dr. Mandeville, perceiving that "the usual
definitions of the verb are extremely defective," not long ago helped the
schools to the following: "A verb is a word which describes _the state or
condition_ of a _noun or pronoun_ in relation to _time_,"--_Course of
Reading_, p. 24. Now it is plain, that under this definition too, Cutler's
infinitives, "to _he_ and _she_" cannot be verbs; and, in my opinion, very
small is the number of words that can be. No verb "describes the state or
condition of a _noun or pronoun_," except in some form of _parsing_; nor,
even in this sort of exercise, do I find any verb "which describes the
state or condition" of such a word "_in relation to time_." Hence, I can
make of this definition nothing but nonsense. Against my definition of a
verb, this author urges, that it "excludes neuter verbs, expresses _no
relation_ to subject or time, and uses terms in a vague or contradictory
sense."--_Ib._, p. 25. The first and the last of these three allegations do
not appear to be well founded; and the second, if infinitives are verbs,
indicates an excellence rather than a fault. The definition assumes that
the mind as well as the body may "_act_" or "_be acted upon_." For this
cause, Dr. Mandeville, who cannot conceive that "_to be loved_" is in any
wise "_to be acted upon_," pronounces it "fatally defective!" His argument
is a little web of sophistry, not worth unweaving here. One of the best
scholars cited in the reverend Doctor's book says, "Of mental powers we
have _no conception_, but as certain capacities of _intellectual action_."
And again, he asks, "Who can be conscious of _judgment, memory_, and
_reflection_, and doubt that man was made _to act_!"--EVERETT: _Course of
Reading_, p. 320.
 Dr. Johnson says, "English verbs are active, as _I love_; or neuter,
as _I languish_. The neuters are formed like the actives. The passive voice
is formed by joining the participle preterit to the substantive verb, as _I
am loved_." He also observes, "Most verbs signifying _action_ may likewise
signify _condition_ or _habit_, and become _neuters_; as, _I love_, I am in
love; _I strike_, I am now striking."--_Gram. with his Quarto Dict._, p. 7.
 The doctrine here referred to, appears in both works in the very same
words: to wit, "English Verbs are either Active, Passive, or Neuter. There
are two sorts of Active Verbs, viz. _active-transitive_ and
_active-intransitive_ Verbs."--_British Gram._, p. 153; _Buchanan's_, 56.
Buchanan was in this case the copyist.
 "The distinction between verbs absolutely neuter, as _to sleep_, and
verbs active intransitive, as _to walk_, though _founded_ in NATURE _and_
TRUTH, is of little use in grammar. Indeed it would rather perplex than
assist the learner; for the difference between verbs active and [verbs]
neuter, as transitive and intransitive, is easy and obvious; but the
difference between verbs absolutely neuter and [those which are]
intransitively active is not always clear. But however these latter may
differ in nature, the construction of them both is the same; and grammar is
not so much concerned with their _real_, as with their _grammatical_
properties."--_Lowth's Gram_; p. 30. But are not "TRUTH, NATURE, and
REALITY," worthy to be preferred to any instructions that contradict them?
If they are, the good doctor and his worthy copyist have here made an ill
choice. It is not only for the sake of these properties, that I retain a
distinction which these grammarians, and others above named, reject; but
for the sake of avoiding the untruth, confusion, and absurdity, into which
one must fall by calling all active-intransitive verbs _neuter_. The
distinction of active verbs, as being either transitive or intransitive, is
also necessarily retained. But the suggestion, that this distinction is
more "_easy and obvious_" than the other, is altogether an error. The
really neuter verbs, being very few, occasion little or no difficulty. But
very many active verbs, perhaps a large majority, are sometimes used
intransitively; and of those which our lexicographers record as being
always transitive, not a few are occasionally found without any object,
either expressed or clearly suggested: as, "He _convinces_, but he does not
_elevate nor animate_,"--_Blair's Rhet._, p. 242. "The child _imitates_,
and _commits_ to memory; whilst the riper age _digests_, and thinks
independently."--_Dr. Lieber, Lit. Conv._, p. 313. Of examples like these,
three different views maybe taken; and it is _very questionable_ which is
the right one: _First_, that these verbs are here _intransitive_, though
they are not commonly so; _Second_, that they are _transitive_, and have
objects understood; _Third_, that they are used _improperly_, because no
determinate objects are given them. If we assume the second opinion or the
last, the full or the correct expressions may be these: "He convinces _the
judgement_, but he does not elevate _the imagination_, or animate _the
feelings_."--"The child imitates _others_, and commits _words_ to memory;
whilst the riper age digests _facts or truths_, and thinks independently."
These verbs are here transitive, but are they so above? Those grammarians
who, supposing no other distinction important, make of verbs but two
classes, transitive and intransitive, are still as much at variance, and as
much at fault, as others, (and often more so,) when they come to draw the
line of this distinction. To "_require_" an objective, to "_govern_" an
objective, to "_admit_" an objective, and to "_have_" an objective, are
criterions considerably different. Then it is questionable, whether
infinitives, participles, or sentences, must or can have the effect of
objectives. One author says, "If a verb has any objective case _expressed_,
it is transitive: if it has none, it is intransitive. _Verbs which_ appear
transitive in their nature, may frequently be used intransitively."--
_Chandler's Old Gram._, p. 32; his _Common School Gram._, p. 48. An other
says, "A transitive verb _asserts_ action which does or can, terminate on
some object."--_Frazee's Gram._, p. 29. An other avers, "There are two
classes of verbs _perfectly distinct_ from each other, viz: Those which
_do_, and those which _do not_, govern an objective case." And his
definition is, "A _Transitive Verb_ is one which _requires_ an _objective
case_ after it."--_Hart's E. Gram._, p. 63. Both Frazee and Hart reckon the
_passive_ verb _transitive!_ And the latter teaches, that, "_Transitive_
verbs in English, are sometimes used _without an objective case_; as, The
apple _tastes_ sweet!"--_Hart's Gram._, p, 73.
 In the hands of some gentlemen, "the Principles of Latin Grammar,"
and "the Principles of English Grammar,"--are equally pliable, or
changeable; and, what is very remarkable, a comparison of different
editions will show, that the fundamental doctrines of a whole "Series of
Grammars, English, Latin, and Greek," may so change in a single lustrum, as
to rest upon authorities altogether different. Dr. Bullions's grammars, a
few years ago, like those of his great oracles, Adam, Murray, and Lennie,
divided verbs into "three kinds, _Active, Passive_, and _Neuter_." Now they
divide them into two only, "_Transitive_ and _Intransitive_;" and absurdly
aver, that "_Verbs in the passive form are really transitive as in the
active form_."--_Prin. of E. Gram._, 1843, p. 200. Now, as if no verb could
be plural, and no transitive act could be future, conditional, in progress,
or left undone, they define thus: "A _Transitive_ verb expresses an _act
done_ by one person or thing to another."--_Ib._, p. 29; _Analyt. and
Pract. Gram._, 60; _Latin Gram._, 77. Now, the division which so lately as
1842 was pronounced by the Doctor to be "more useful than any other," and
advantageously accordant with "most dictionaries of the English language,"
(see his _Fourth Edition_, p. 30,) is wholly rejected from this notable
"_Series_." Now, the "_vexed question_" about "the classification of
verbs," which, at some revision still later, drew from this author whole
pages of weak arguments for his faulty _changes_, is complacently supposed
to have been _well settled_ in his favour! Of this matter, now, in 1849, he
speaks thus: "The division of verbs into transitive and intransitive has
been so generally adopted and approved by the best grammarians, that any
discussion of the subject is now unnecessary."--_Bullions's Analyt. and
Pract. Gram._, p. 59.
 This late writer seems to have published his doctrine on this point
as a _novelty_; and several teachers ignorantly received and admired it as
such: I have briefly shown, in the Introduction to this work, how easily
they were deceived. "By this, that Question may be resolv'd, whether every
Verb not Passive governs always an Accusative, at least understood: '_Tis
the Opinion of some very able_ GRAMMARIANS, but for _our_ Parts _we_ don't
think it."--_Grammar published by John Brightland_, 7th Ed., London, 1746,
 Upon this point, Richard Johnson cites and criticises Lily's system
thus: "'A Verb Neuter endeth in _o_ or _m_, and cannot take _r_ to make
_him_ a Passive; as, _Curro_, I run; _Sum_, I am.'--_Grammar, Eng_. p. 13.
This Definition, is founded upon the Notion abovementioned, viz. That none
but Transitives are Verbs Active, which is contrary to the reason of
Things, and the common sense of Mankind. And what can shock a Child more,
of any Ingenuity, than to be told, That _Ambuto_ and _Curro_ are Verbs
Neuter; that is, to speak according to the common Apprehensions of Mankind,
that they signifie neither to do, nor suffer."--_Johnson's Grammatical
Commentaries_, 8vo, London, 1706, p. 273.
 Murray says, "_Mood_ or _Mode_ is a particular form of the verb,
showing the manner in which the being, action, or passion is
represented."--_Octavo Gram._, p. 63. By many grammarians, the term _Mode_
is preferred to _Mood_; but the latter is, for this use, the more
distinctive, and by far the more common word. In some treatises on grammar,
as well as in books of logic, certain _parts of speech_, as _adjectives_
and _adverbs_, are called _Modes_, because they qualify or modify other
terms. E.g., "Thus all the parts of speech are reducible to four; viz.,
_Names, Verbs, Modes, Connectives_."--_Enclytica, or Universal Gram._, p.
8. "_Modes_ are naturally divided, by their attribution to names or verbs,
into _adnames_ and _adverbs_."--_Ibid._, p. 24. After making this
application of the name _modes_, was it not improper for the learned author
to call the moods also "_modes_?"
 "We have, in English, no genuine subjunctive mood, except the
preterimperfect, if I _were_, if thou _wert_, &c. of the verb _to be_. [See
Notes and Observations on the Third Example of Conjugation, in this
chapter.] The phrase termed _the subjunctive mood_, is elliptical; _shall,
may_, &c. being understood: as, 'Though hand (shall) join in hand, the
wicked shall not be unpunished.' 'If it (may) be possible, live peaceably
with all.' Scriptures."--_Rev. W. Allen's Gram._, p. 61. Such expressions
as, "If thou _do love_, If he _do love_," appear to disprove this doctrine.
[See Notes and Remarks on the Subjunctive of the First Example conjugated
 "Mr. Murray has changed his opinion, as often as Laban changed
Jacob's wages. In the edition we print from, we find _shall_ and _will_
used in each person of the _first_ and _second_ future tenses of the
subjunctive, but he now states that in the second future tense, _shalt,
shall_, should be used instead of _wilt, will_. Perhaps this is _the only
improvement_ he has made in his Grammar since 1796."--_Rev. T. Smith's
Edition of Lindley Murray's English Grammar_, p. 67.
 Notwithstanding this expression, Murray did not teach, as do many
modern grammarians, that _inflected_ forms of the present tense, such as,
"If he _thinks_ so," "Unless he _deceives_ me," "If thou _lov'st_ me," are
of the subjunctive mood; though, when he rejected his changeless forms of
the other tenses of this mood, he _improperly_ put as many indicatives in
their places. With him, and his numerous followers, the ending determines
the mood in one tense, while the conjunction controls it in the other five!
In his syntax, he argues, "that in cases wherein contingency and futurity
do not occur, it is not proper to turn the verb from its signification of
present time, _nor to vary_ [he means, _or to forbear to change_] its form
or termination. [Fist] _The verb would then be in the indicative mood,
whatever conjunctions might attend it_."--_L. Murray's Gram._, 8vo, p. 208:
12mo, p. 167.
 Some grammarians--(among whom are Lowth, Dalton, Cobbett, and
Cardell--) recognize only three tenses, or "_times_," of English verbs;
namely, _the present, the past_, and _the future_. A few, like Latham and
Child, denying all the compound tenses to be tenses, acknowledge only the
first two, _the present_ and _the past_; and these they will have to
consist only of the simple or radical verb and the simple preterit. Some
others, who acknowledge six tenses, such as are above described, have
endeavoured of late to _change the names_ of a majority of them; though
with too little agreement among themselves, as may be seen by the following
citations: (1.) "We have six tenses; three, the _Present, Past_, and
_Future_, to represent time in a general way; and three, the _Present
Perfect, Past Perfect_, and _Future Perfect_, to represent the precise time
of _finishing_ the action."--_Perley's Gram._, 1834, p. 25. (2.) "There are
six tenses; the _present_, the _past_, the _present-perfect_, the
_past-perfect_, the _future_, and the _future-perfect_."--_Hiley's Gram._,
1840, p. 28. (3.) "There are six tenses; the _Present_ and _Present
Perfect_, the _Past_ and _Past Perfect_, and the _Future_ and _Future
Perfect_."--_Farnum's Gram._, 1842, p. 34. (4.) "The names of the tenses
will then be, _Present, Present Perfect; Past, Past Perfect; Future, Future
Perfect_. They are _usually_ named as follows: _Present, Perfect,
Imperfect, Pluperfect, Future, Second Future_."--_N. Butler's Gram_, 1845,
p. 69. (5.) "We have six tenses;--the _present_, the _past_, the _future_,
the _present perfect_, the _past perfect_, and the _future
perfect_."--_Wells's School Gram._, 1846. p. 82. (6.) "The tenses in
English are six--the _Present_, the _Present-perfect_, the _Past_, the
_Past-perfect_, the _Future_, and the _Future-perfect_."--_Bullions's
Gram._, 1849. p. 71. (7.) "Verbs have _Six Tenses_, called the _Present_,
the _Perfect-Present_, the _Past_, the _Perfect-Past_, the _Future_, and
the _Perfect-Future_."--_Spencer's Gram._, 1852, p. 53. (8.) "There are six
tenses: the _present, past, future, present perfect, past perfect_, and
_future perfect_."--_Covell's Gram._, 1853, p. 62. (9.) "The tenses
are--the _present_, the _present perfect_; the _past_, the _past perfect_;
the _future_, the _future perfect_."--_S. S. Greene's Gram._, 1853, p. 65.
(10.) "There are six tenses; _one present_, and _but one, three past_, and
_two future_." They are named thus: "_The Present, the First Past, the
Second Past, the Third Past, the First Future, the Second Future_."--"For
the sake of symmetry, to call _two_ of them _present_, and _two_ only past,
while _one_ only is _present_, and _three_ are _past_ tenses, is to
sacrifice truth to beauty."--_Pinneo's Gram._, 1853, pp. 69 and 70. "The
old names, _imperfect, perfect_, and _pluperfect_," which, in 1845, Butler
justly admitted to be the _usual_ names of the three past tenses. Dr.
Pinneo, who dates his copy-right from 1850, most unwarrantably declares to
be "_now generally discarded_!"--_Analytical Gram._, p. 76; _Same Revised_,
p. 81. These terms, still predominant in use, he strangely supposes to have
been suddenly superseded by others which are no better, if so good:
imagining that the scheme which Perley or Hiley introduced, of "_two
present, two past_, and _two future_ tenses,"--a scheme which, he says,
"has no foundation in truth, and is therefore to be rejected,"--had
prepared the way for the above-cited innovation of his own, which merely
presents the old ideas under new terms, or terms partly new, and wholly
unlikely to prevail. William Ward, one of the ablest of our old
grammarians, rejecting in 1765 the two terms _imperfect_ and _perfect_,
adopted others which resemble Pinneo's; but few, if any, have since named
the tenses as he did, thus: "_The Present, the First Preterite, the Second
Preterite, the Pluperfect, the First Future, the Second Future_."--_Ward's
Gram._, p. 47.
 "The infinitive mood, as '_to shine_,' may be called the name of the
verb; it carries _neither time nor affirmation_; but simply expresses that
attribute, action, or state of things, which is to be the subject of the
other moods and tenses."--_Blair's Lectures_, p. 81. By the word
"_subject_" the Doctor does not here mean the _nominative to_ the other
moods and tenses, but the _material of_ them, or that which is formed into
 Some grammarians absurdly deny that persons and numbers are
properties of verbs at all: not indeed because our verbs have so few
inflections, or because these authors wish to discard the little
distinction that remains; but because they have some fanciful conception,
that these properties cannot pertain to a verb. Yet, when they come to
their syntax, they all forget, that if a verb has no person and number, it
cannot agree with a nominative in these respects. Thus KIRKHAM: "_Person_,
strictly speaking, is a quality that belongs _not to verbs_, but to nouns
and pronouns. We say, however, that the verb _must agree_ with its
nominative in _person_, as well as in number."--_Gram. in Familiar Lect._,
p. 46. So J. W. WRIGHT: "In truth, number and person _are not properties of
verbs_. Mr. Murray grants that, 'in philosophical strictness, both number
and person might (say, _may_) be excluded from every verb, as they are, in
fact, the properties of substantives, not a part of the essence of the
verb.'"--_Philosophical Gram._, p. 68. This author's rule of syntax for
verbs, makes them agree with their nominatives, not in person and number,
but in _termination_, or else in _nobody knows what_: "A verb _must vary
its terminations_, so as to agree with the nominative to which it is
connected."--_Ib._, p. 168. But Murray's rule is, "A verb must agree with
its nominative case in _number and person_:" and this doctrine is directly
repugnant to that interpretation of his words above, by which these
gentlemen have so egregiously misled themselves and others. Undoubtedly,
both the numbers and the persons of all English verbs might be abolished,
and the language would still be intelligible. But while any such
distinctions remain, and the verb is actually modified to form them, they
belong as properly to this part of speech as they can to any other. De Sacy
says, "The distinction of number _occurs_ in the verb;" and then adds, "yet
this distinction does not properly _belong to_ the verb, as it signifies
nothing which can be numbered."--_Fosdick's Version_, p. 64. This deceptive
reason is only a new form of the blunder which I have once exposed, of
confounding the numbers in grammar with numbers in arithmetic. J. M.
Putnam, after repeating what is above cited from Murray, adds: "The terms
_number_ and _person_, as applied to the verb are _figurative_. The
properties which belong to one thing, for convenience' sake are ascribed to
another."--_Gram._, p. 49. Kirkham imagines, if ten men _build_ a house, or
_navigate_ a ship round the world, they perform just "_ten actions_," and
no more. "Common sense teaches you," says he, "that _there must be as many
actions as there are actors_; and that the verb when it has no form or
ending to show it, is as strictly plural, as when it has. So, in the
phrase, '_We walk_,' the verb _walk_ is [of the] first person, because it
expresses the _actions_ performed by the _speakers_. The verb, then, when
correctly written, always agrees, _in sense_, with its nominative in number
and person."--_Kirkham's Gram._, p. 47. It seems to me, that these authors
do not very well know what persons or numbers, in grammar, are.
 John Despauter, whose ample Grammar of the Latin language appeared in
its third edition in 1517, represents this practice as a corruption
originating in false pride, and maintained by the wickedness of hungry
flatterers. On the twentieth leaf of his Syntax, he says, "Videntur hodie
Christiani superbiores, quam olim ethnici imperatores, qui dii haberi
voluerunt; nam hi nunquam inviti audierunt pronomina _tu, tibi, tuus_. Quae
si hodie alicui monachorum antistiti, aut decano, aut pontifici dicantur
aut scribantur, videbitur ita loquens aut scribens blasphemasse, et
anathemate dignus: nec tamen Abbas, aut pontifex, tam aegre feret, quam
Malchi, aut famelici gnathones, his assistentes, et vociferantes, _Sic
loqueris, aut scribis, pontifici?_ Quintilianus et Donatus dicunt
barbarismum, aut soloecismum esse, siquis uni dicat. _Salvete._" The
learned Erasmus also ridiculed this practice, calling those who adopted it,
"_voscitatores_," or _youyouers_.
 "By a _perversion of language_ the pronoun _you_ is almost invariably
used for the second person singular, as well as plural; always, however,
retaining the plural verb; as, 'My friend, _you write_ a good hand.' _Thou_
is confined to a solemn style, or [to] poetical compositions."--_Chandler's
Grammar_, Edition of 1821, p. 41; Ed. of 1847, p. 66.
 In regard to the inflection of our verbs, William B. Fowle, who is
something of an antiquarian in grammar, and who professes now to be
"conservative" of the popular system, makes a threefold distinction of
style, thus: "English verbs have three _Styles_[,] or _Modes_,[;] called
[the] _Familiar_, [the] _Solemn_[,] and [the] _Ancient_. The _familiar
style_, or mode, is that used in common conversation; as, you _see_, he
_fears_. The _solemn style_, or mode, is that used in the Bible, and in
prayer; as, Thou _seest_, he _feareth_. The _ancient style_, or mode, now
little used, _allows no change_ in the second and third person,
[_persons_,] singular, of the verb, and generally follows the word _if_,
_though, lest_, or _whether_; as, if thou _see_; though he _fear_; lest he
_be_ angry; whether he _go_ or _stay_."--_Fowle's Common School Grammar_,
Part Second, p. 44. Among his subsequent examples of the _Solemn style_, he
gives the following: "Thou _lovest_, Thou _lovedst_, Thou _art_, Thou
_wast_, Thou _hast_, Thou _hadst_, Thou _doest_ or _dost_, Thou _didst_."
And, as corresponding examples of the _Ancient style_, he has these forms:
"Thou _love_, Thou _loved_, Thou _or you be_, Thou _wert_, Thou _have_,
Thou _had_, Thou _do_, Thou _did_."--_Ib._, pp. 44-50. This distinction and
this arrangement do not appear to me to be altogether warranted by facts.
The necessary distinction of _moods_, this author rejects; confounding the
_Subjunctive_ with the _Indicative_, in order to furnish out this useless
and fanciful contrast of his _Solemn_ and _Ancient styles_.
 In that monstrous jumble and perversion of Murray's doctrines,
entitled, "English Grammar on the Productive System, by Roswell C. Smith,"
_you_ is everywhere preferred to _thou_, and the verbs are conjugated
_without the latter pronoun_. At the close of his paradigms, however, the
author inserts a few lines respecting "_these obsolete conjugations_," with
the pronoun _thou_; for a further account of which, he refers the learner,
_with a sneer_, to the common grammars in the schools. See the work, p. 79.
He must needs be a remarkable grammarian, with whom Scripture, poetry, and
prayer, are all "_obsolete_!" Again: "_Thou_ in the singular _is obsolete_,
except among the Society of Friends; and _ye_ is an _obsolete_
plural!"--_Guy's School Gram._, p. 25. In an other late grammar,
professedly "constructed upon the _basis of Murray's_, by the _Rev. Charles
Adams_, A. M., Principal of Newbury Seminary," the second person singular
is everywhere superseded by the plural; the former being silently dropped
from all his twenty pages of conjugations, without so much as a hint, or a
saving clause, respecting it; and the latter, which is put in its stead, is
falsely called _singular_. By his pupils, all forms of the verb that agree
only with _thou_, will of course be conceived to be either obsolete or
barbarous, and consequently ungrammatical. Whether or not the reverend
gentleman makes any account of the Bible or of prayer, does not appear; he
cites some poetry, in which there are examples that cannot be reconciled
with his "System of English Grammar." Parkhurst, in his late "Grammar for
Beginners," tells us that, "Such words as are used in the Bible, and not
used in common books, are called _obsolete!_"--P. 146. Among these, he
reckons all the distinctive forms of the second person singular, and all
the "peculiarities" which "constitute what is commonly called the _Solemn
Style_."--_Ib._, p. 148. Yet, with no great consistency, he adds: "This
style _is always used_ in prayer, and _is frequently used_ in
poetry."--_Ibid._ Joab Brace, Jnr., may be supposed to have the same notion
of what is obsolete: for he too has perverted all Lennie's examples of the
verb, as Smith and Adams did Murray's.
 Coar gives _durst_ in the "Indicative mood," thus: "I durst, _thou
durst_, he durst;" &c.--_Coar's E. Gram._, p. 115. But when he comes to
_wist_, he does not know what the second person singular should be, and so
he leaves it out: "I wist, ------, he wist; we wist, ye wist, they
wist."--_Coar's E. Gram._, p. 116.
 Dr. Latham, who, oftener perhaps than any other modern writer,
corrupts the grammar of our language by efforts to revive in it things
really and deservedly obsolete, most strangely avers that "The words _thou_
and _thee_ are, except in the mouths of Quakers, obsolete. The plural
forms, _ye_ and _you_, have replaced them."--_Hand-Book_, p. 284. Ignoring
also any current or "vital" process of forming English verbs in the second
person singular, he gravely tells us that the old form, as "_callest_"
(which is still the true form for the solemn style,) "is becoming
obsolete."--_Ib._, p. 210. "In phrases like _you are speaking_, &c.," says
he rightlier, "even when applied to a single individual, _the idea is
really plural_; in other words, the courtesy consists in treating _one_
person as _more than one_, and addressing him as such, rather than in using
a plural form in a singular sense. It is certain that, grammatically
considered, _you=thou_ is a plural, since the verb with which it agrees is
plural."--_Ib._, p. 163. If these things be so, the English Language owes
much to the scrupulous conservatism of the Quakers; for, had their courtesy
consented to the grammar of the fashionables, the singular number would now
have had but two persons!
 For the substitution of _you_ for _thou_, our grammarians assign
various causes. That which is most commonly given in modern books, is
certainly not the original one, because it concerns no other language than
ours: "In order _to avoid the unpleasant formality_ which accompanies the
use of _thou_ with a correspondent verb, its plural _you_, is usually
adopted to familiar conversation; as, Charles, _will you_ walk? instead
of--_wilt thou_ walk? _You read_ too fast, instead of--_thou readest_ too
fast."--_Jaudon's Gram._, p. 33.
 This position, as may be seen above, I do not suppose it competent
for any critic to maintain. The use of _you_ for _thou_ is no more
"contrary to grammar," than the use of _we_ for _I_; which, it seems, is
grammatical enough for all editors, compilers, and crowned heads, if not
for others. But both are _figures of syntax_; and, as such, they stand upon
the same footing. Their only contrariety to grammar consists in this, that
the words are not the _literal representatives_ of the number for which
they are put. But in what a posture does the grammarian place himself, who
condemns, as _bad English_, that phraseology which he constantly and
purposely uses? The author of the following remark, as well as all who have
praised his work, ought immediately to adopt the style of the Friends, or
Quakers: "The word _thou_, in grammatical construction, is preferable to
_you_, in the second person singular: however, custom has familiarized the
latter, and consequently made it more general, though BAD GRAMMAR. To say,
'_You are a man_.' is NOT GRAMMATICAL LANGUAGE; the word _you_ having
reference to _a plural noun only_. It should be, '_Thou art a
man_.'"--_Wright's Philosoph. Gram._, p. 55. This author, like Lindley
Murray and many others, continually calls _himself_ WE; and it is probable,
that neither he, nor any one of his sixty reverend commenders, _dares
address_ any man otherwise than by the above-mentioned "BAD GRAMMAR!"
 "We are always given to cut our words short; and, _with very few
exceptions_, you find people writing _lov'd, mov'd, walk'd_; instead of
_loved, moved, walked._ They wish to make the _pen_ correspond with the
_tongue._ From _lov'd, mov'd, walk'd_, it is very easy to slide into _lovt,
movt, walkt._ And this has been the case with regard to _curst, dealt,
dwelt, leapt, helpt_, and many others in the last inserted list. It is just
as proper to say _jumpt_, as it is to say _leapt_; and just as proper to
say _walkt_ as either; and thus we might go on till the orthography of the
whole language were changed. When the love of contraction came to operate
on such verbs as _to burst_ and _to light_, it found such a clump of
consonants already at the end of the words, that, it could add none. It
could not enable the organs even of English speech to pronounce _burstedst,
lightedst._ It, therefore, made really short work of it, and dropping the
last syllable altogether, wrote, _burst, light_, [rather, _lit_] in the
past time and passive participle."--_Cobbett's English Gram._, 169. How
could the man who saw all this, insist on adding _st_ for the second
person, where not even the _d_ of the past tense could he articulated? Am I
to be called an innovator, because I do not like in conversation such _new_
and _unauthorized_ words as _littest, leaptest, curstest_; or a corrupter
of the language, because I do not admire in poetry such unutterable
monstrosities as, _light'dst, leap'dst, curs'dst_? The novelism, with the
corruption too, is wholly theirs who stickle for these awkward forms.
 "You _were_, not you _was_, for you _was_ seems to be as
ungrammatical, as you _hast_ would be. For the pronoun you being
confessedly plural, its correspondent verb ought to be plural."--_John
Burn's Gram._, 10th Ed., P. 72.
 Among grammarians, as well as among other writers, there is some
diversity of usage concerning the personal inflections of verbs; while
nearly all, nowadays, remove the chief occasion for any such diversity, by
denying with a fashionable bigotry the possibility of any grammatical use
of the pronoun _thou_ in a familiar style. To illustrate this, I will cite
Cooper and Wells--two modern authors who earnestly agree to account _you_
and its verb literally singular, and _thou_ altogether erroneous, in common
discourse: except that _Wells_ allows the phrase, "_If thou art_," for
"_Common style_."--_School Gram._, p. 100.
1. Cooper, improperly referring _all_ inflection of the verb to the grave
or solemn style, says: "In the colloquial or familiar style, we observe _no
change_. The same is the case in the plural number." He then proceeds thus:
"In the second person of the present of the indicative, in the _solemn
style_, the verb takes _st_ or _est_; and in the third person _th_ or
_eth_, as: _thou hast, thou lovest, thou teachest; he hath, he loveth, he
goeth_. In the colloquial or _familiar style_, the verb _does not vary_ in
the second person; and in the third person, it ends in _s_ or _es_, as: _he
loves, he teaches, he does_. The indefinite, [i. e. the preterit,] in the
second person singular of the indicative, in the _grave style_, ends in
_est_, as: _thou taughtest, thou wentest_. [Fist] But, _in those verbs,
where_ the sound of _st_ will unite with the last syllable of the verb, the
vowel is omitted, as: _thou lovedst, thou heardst, thou didst_."--_Cooper's
Murray_, p. 60; _Plain and Practical Gram._, p. 59. This, the reader will
see, is somewhat contradictory; for the colloquial style varies the verb by
"_s_ or _es_," and _taught'st may_ be uttered without the _e_. As for
"_lovedst_," I deny that any vowel "_is omitted_" from it; but possibly one
_may_ be, as _lov'dst_.
2. Wells's account of the same thing is this: "In the simple form of the
present and past indicative, the second person singular of the _solemn
style_ ends regularly in _st_ or _est_, as, thou _seest_, thou _hearest_,
thou _sawest, thou heardest_; and the third person singular of the present,
in _s_ or _es_, as, he _hears_, he _wishes_, and also in _th_ or _eth_, as,
he _saith_, he _loveth_. In the simple form of the present indicative, the
third person singular of the _common_ or _familiar style_, ends in _s_ or
_es_; as, he _sleeps_; he _rises_. The first person singular of the _solemn
style_, and the first and second persons singular of the _common style_,
have _the same form_ as the three persons plural."--_Wells's School
Grammar_, 1st Ed. p. 83; 3d Ed. p. 86. This, too, is both defective and
inconsistent. It does not tell when to add _est_, and when, _st_ only. It
does not show what the _regular preterit_, as _freed_ or _loved_, should
make with _thou_: whether _freedest_ and _lovedest_, by assuming the
syllable _est; fre-edst_ and _lov-edst_, by increasing syllabically from
assuming _st_ only; or _freedst_ and _lov'dst_, or _lovedst_, still to be
uttered as monosyllables. It absurdly makes "_s_ or _es_" a sign of two
opposite styles. (See OBS. 9th, above.) And it does not except "_I am, I
was, If I am, If I was, If thou art, I am loved_," and so forth, from
requiring "the same form, [_are_ or _were_,] as the three persons plural."
This author prefers "_heardest_;" the other, "_heardst_," which I think
"And _heardst_ thou why he drew his blade?
_Heardst_ thou that shameful word and blow
Brought Roderick's vengeance on his foe?"--_Scott_, L. L., C. v, st. 6.
 Better, as Wickliffe has it, "the day _in which_;" though, after
nouns of time, the relative _that_ is often used, like the Latin ablative
_quo_ or _qua_, as being equivalent to _in which_ or _on which_.
 It is not a little strange, that some men, who _never have seen or
heard_ such words as their own rules would produce for the second person
singular of many hundreds of our most common verbs, will nevertheless
pertinaciously insist, that it is wrong to countenance in this matter any
departure from the style of King James's Bible. One of the very rashest and
wildest of modern innovators,--a critic who, but for the sake of those who
still speak in this person and number, would gladly consign the pronoun
_thou_, and all its attendant verbal forms, to utter oblivion,--thus treats
this subject and me: "The Quakers, or Friends, however, use _thou_, and its
attendant form of the _asserter_, in conversation. FOR THEIR BENEFIT,
_thou_ is given, in this work, in all the varieties of inflection; (in some
of which it could not properly be used in an address to the Deity;) for
THEY ERR MOST EGREGIOUSLY in the use of _thou_, with the form of the
_asserter_ which follows _he_ or _they_, and are countenanced in their
errors by G. Brown, who, instead of 'disburdening _the language_ of 144,000
useless _distinctions, increases_ their number just 144,000."--_Oliver B.
Peirce's Gram._, p. 85 Among people of sense, converts are made by
teaching, and reasoning, and proving; but this man's disciples must yield
to the balderdash of a _false speller, false quoter_, and _false assertor!_
This author says, that "_dropt_" is the past tense of "_drop_;" (p. 118;)
let him prove, for example, that _droptest_ is not a clumsy _innovation_,
and that _droppedst_ is not a formal archaism, and then tell of the
egregious error of adopting neither of these forms in common conversation.
The following, with its many common contractions, is the language of POPE;
and I ask this, or any other opponent of my doctrine, TO SHOW HOW SUCH
VERBS ARE RIGHTLY FORMED, either for poetry or for conversation, _in the
second person singular_.
"It _fled_, I _follow'd_; now in hope, now pain;
It _stopt_, I _stopt_; it _mov'd_, I _mov'd_ again.
At last it _fix't_,'twas on what plant it _pleas'd_,
And where it _fix'd_, the beauteous bird I _seiz'd_."
--_Dunciad_, B. IV, l. 427.
 The Rev. W. Allen, in his English Grammar, p. 132, says: "_Yth_ and
_eth_ (from the Saxon laeth [sic--KTH]) were formerly, _plural terminations_;
as, 'Manners _makyth_ man.' William of Wykeham's motto. 'After long
advisement, they _taketh_ upon them to try the matter.' Stapleton's
Translation of Bede. 'Doctrine and discourse _maketh_ nature less
importune.' Bacon." The use of _eth_ as a plural termination of verbs, was
evidently earlier than the use of _en_ for the same purpose. Even the
latter is utterly obsolete, and the former can scarcely have been
_English_. The Anglo-Saxon verb _lufian_, or _lufigean_, to love, appears
to have been inflected with the several pronouns thus: Ic lufige, Thu
lufast, He lufath, We lufiath, Ge lufiath, Hi lufiath. The form in Old
English was this: I love, Thou lovest, He loveth, We loven, Ye loven, They
loven. Dr. Priestley remarks, (though in my opinion unadvisedly,) that,
"Nouns of a plural form, but of a singular signification, require a
singular construction; as, mathematicks _is_ a useful study. This
observation will likewise," says he, "_in some measure_, vindicate the
grammatical propriety of the famous saying of William of Wykeham, Manners
_maketh_ man."--_Priestley's Gram._, p. 189. I know not what _half-way_
vindication there can be, for any such construction. _Manners_ and
_mathematics_ are not nouns of the singular number, and therefore both _is_
and _maketh_ are wrong. I judge it better English to say, "Mathematics
_are_ a useful study."--"Manners _make_ the man." But perhaps both ideas
may be still better expressed by a change of the nominative, thus: "The
_study_ of mathematics _is_ useful."--"_Behaviour makes_ the man."
 What the state of our literature would have been, had no author
attempted any thing on English grammar, must of course be a matter of mere
conjecture, and not of any positive "conviction." It is my opinion, that,
with all their faults, most of the books and essays in which this subject
has been handled, have been in some degree _beneficial_, and a few of them
highly so; and that, without their influence, our language must have been
much more chaotic and indeterminable than it now is. But a late writer
says, and, with respect to _some_ of our verbal terminations, says wisely:
"It is my _sincere conviction_ that fewer irregularities would have crept
into the language had no grammars existed, than have been authorized by
grammarians; for it should be understood that the first of our grammarians,
finding that good writers differed upon many points, instead of
endeavouring to reconcile these discrepancies, absolutely perpetuated them
by _citing opposite usages, and giving high authorities for both_. To this
we owe all the irregularity which exists in the personal terminations of
verbs, some of the best early writers using them _promiscuously_, some
using them _uniformly_, and others making _no use_ of them; and really
_they are of no use_ but to puzzle children and foreigners, perplex poets,
and furnish an awkward dialect to that exemplary sect of Christians, who in
every thing else study simplicity."--_Fowle's True E. Gram._, Part II, p.
26. Wells, a still later writer, gives this unsafe rule: "_When the past
tense is a monosyllable not ending in a single vowel_, the second person
singular of the solemn style is generally formed by the addition of _est_;
as _heardest, fleddest, tookest_. _Hadst, wast, saidst, and didst_, are
exceptions."--_Wells's School Gram._, 1st Ed., p. 106; 3d Ed., p. 110;
113th Ed., p. 115. Now the termination _d_ or _ed_ commonly adds no
syllable; so that the regular past tense of any monosyllabic verb is, with
a few exceptions, a monosyllable still; as, _freed, feed, loved, feared,
planned, turned_: and how would these sound with _est_ added, which Lowth,
Hiley, Churchill, and some others erroneously claim as having pertained to
such preterits anciently? Again, if _heard_ is a contraction of _heared_,
and _fled_, of _fleed_, as seems probable; then are _heardst_ and
_fledtst_, which are sometimes used, more regular than _heardest,
fleddest_: so of many other preterits.
 Chaucer appears not to have inflected this word in the second person:
"Also ryght as _thou were_ ensample of moche folde errour, righte so thou
must be ensample of manifold correction."--_Testament of Love_. "Rennin and
crie as _thou were_ wode."--_House of Fame_. So others: "I wolde _thou
were_ cold or hoot."--WICKLIFFE'S VERSION OF THE APOCALYPSE. "I wolde _thou
were_ cold or hote."--VERSION OF EDWARD VI: _Tooke_, Vol. ii, p. 270. See
Rev., iii, 15: "I would thou _wert_ cold or hot."--COMMON VERSION.
 See evidence of the _antiquity_ of this practice, in the examples
under the twenty-third observation above. According to Churchill, it has
had some local continuance even to the present time. For, in a remark upon
Lowth's contractions, _lov'th, turn'th_, this author says, "These are
_still in use in some country places_, the third person singular of verbs
in general being formed by the addition of the sound _th_ simply, not
making an additional syllable."--_Churchill's Gram._, p. 255 So the _eth_
in the following example adds no syllable:--
"Death _goeth_ about the field, rejoicing mickle
To see a sword that so surpass'd his sickle."
_Harrington's Ariosto_, B. xiii:
see _Singer's Shak._, Vol. ii, p. 296.
 The second person singular of the simple verb _do_, is now usually
written _dost_, and read _dust_; being permanently contracted in
orthography, as well as in pronunciation. And perhaps the compounds may
follow; as, Thou _undost, outdost, misdost, overdost_, &c. But exceptions
to exceptions are puzzling, even when they conform to the general rule. The
Bible has _dost_ and _doth_ for auxilliaries, and _doest_ and _doeth_ for
 N. Butler avers, "The only regular terminations added to verbs are
_est, s, ed, edst_, and _ing_."--_Butler's Practical Gram._, p. 81. But he
adds, in a marginal note, this information: "The third person singular of
the present formerly ended in _eth_. This termination is still sometimes
used in the solemn style. Contractions sometimes take place; as, _sayst_
for _sayest_."--_Ibid._ This statement not only imposes a vast deal of
_needless irregularity_ upon the few inflections admitted by the English
verb, but is, so far as it disagrees with mine, a causeless innovation. The
terminations rejected, or here regarded as _irregular_, are _d, st_, _es,
th_, and _eth_; while _edst_, which is plainly a combination of _ed_ and
_st_,--the past ending of the verb with the personal inflection,--is
assumed to be one single and regular termination which I had overlooked! It
has long been an almost universal doctrine of our grammarians, that regular
verbs form their preterits and perfect participles by adding _d_ to final
_e_, and _ed_ to any other radical ending. Such is the teaching of Blair,
Brightland, Bullions, Churchill, Coar, Comly, Cooper, Fowle, Frazee,
Ingersoll, Kirkham, Lennie, Murray, Weld, Wells, Sanborn, and others, a
great multitude. But this author alleges, that, "_Loved_ is not formed by
adding _d_ to _love_, but by adding _ed_, and dropping _e_ from
_love_."--_Butler's Answer to Brown_. Any one is at liberty to think this,
if he will. But I see not the use of playing thus with _mute Ees_, adding
one to drop an other, and often pretending to drop two under one
apostrophe, as in _lov'd, lov'st_! To suppose that the second person of the
regular preterit, as _lovedst_, is not formed by adding _st_ to the first
person, is contrary to the analogy of other verbs, and is something worse
than an idle whim. And why should the formation of the third person be
called _irregular_ when it requires _es_, as in _flies, denies_, _goes,
vetoes, wishes, preaches_, and so forth? In forming _flies_ from _fly_,
Butler changes "_y_ into _ie_," on page 20th, adding _s_ only; and, on page
11th, "into _i_" only, adding _es_. Uniformity would be better.
 Cooper says, "The termination _eth_ is _commonly_ contracted into
_th_, to prevent the addition of a syllable to the verb, as: _doeth_,
_doth_."--_Plain and Practical Gram._, p. 59. This, with reference to
modern usage, is plainly erroneous. For, when _s_ or _es_ was substituted
for _th_ or _eth_, and the familiar use of the latter ceased, this mode of
inflecting the verb without increasing its syllables, ceased also, or at
least became unusual. It appears that the inflecting of verbs with _th_
without a vowel, as well as with _st_ without a vowel, was more common in
very ancient times than subsequently. Our grammarians of the last century
seem to have been more willing to _encumber_ the language with syllabic
endings, than to _simplify_ it by avoiding them. See Observations, 21st,
22d, and 23d, above.
 These are what William Ward, in his Practical Grammar, written about
1765, denominated "the CAPITAL FORMS, or ROOTS, of the English Verb." Their
number too is the same. "And these Roots," says he, "are considered as
_Four_ in each verb; although in many verbs two of them are alike, and in
some few three are alike."--P. 50. Few modern grammarians have been careful
to display these Chief Terms, or Principal Parts, properly. Many say
nothing about them. Some speak of _three_, and name them faultily. Thus
Wells: "The three _principal parts_ of a verb are the _present tense_, the
_past tense_, and the _perfect participle_."--_School Gram._, 113th Ed., p.
92. Now a whole "_tense_" is something more than one verbal form, and
Wells's "perfect participle" includes the auxiliary "_having_." Hence, in
stead of _write, wrote, writing, written_, (the true principal parts of a
certain verb,) one might take, under Wells's description, either of these
threes, both entirely false: _am writing, did write_, and _having written_;
or, _do write, wrotest_, and _having written_. But _writing_, being the
root of the "Progressive Form of the Verb," is far more worthy to be here
counted a chief term, than _wrote_, the preterit, which occurs only in one
tense, and never receives an auxiliary. So of other verbs. This sort of
treatment of the Principal Parts, is a very grave defect in sundry schemes
 A grammarian should know better, than to exhibit, _as a paradigm_ for
school-boys, such English as the following: "I do have, Thou dost have, He
does have: We do have, You do have, They do have."--_Everest's Gram._, p.
106. "I did have, Thou didst have, He did have: We did have, You did have,
They did have."--_Ib._, p. 107. I know not whether any one has yet thought
of conjugating the verb _be_ after this fashion; but the attempt to
introduce, "_am being, is being_," &c., is an innovation much worse.
 Hiley borrows from Webster the remark, that, "_Need_, when
intransitive, is formed _like an auxiliary_, and is followed by a verb,
without the prefix _to_; as, 'He _need go_ no farther.'"--_Hiley's Gram._,
p. 90; _Webster's Imp. Gram._, p. 127; _Philos. Gram._, p. 178. But he
forbears to class it with the auxiliaries, and even contradicts himself, by
a subsequent remark taken from Dr. Campbell, that, for the sake of
"ANALOGY, '_he needs_,' _he dares_,' are preferable to '_he need_,' '_he
dare_,'"--_Hiley's Gram._, p. 145; _Campbell's Rhet._, p. 175
 This grammarian here uses _need_ for the third person singular,
designedly, and makes a remark for the justification of the practice; but
he neither calls the word an auxiliary, nor cites any other than anonymous
examples, which are, perhaps, of his own invention.
 "The substantive form, or, as it is commonly termed, _infinitive
mood_, contains at the same time the essence of verbal meaning, and the
literal ROOT on which all inflections of the verb are to be grafted. This
character being common to the infinitive in all languages, it [this mood]
ought to precede the [other] moods of verbs, instead of being made to
follow them, as is absurdly practised in almost all grammatical
systems."--_Enclytica_, p. 14.
 By this, I mean, that the verb in all the persons, both singular and
plural, is _the same in form_. But Lindley Murray, when he speaks of _not
varying_ or _not changing_ the termination of the verb, most absurdly means
by it, that the verb _is inflected_, just as it is in the indicative or the
potential mood; and when he speaks of _changes_ or _variations_ of
termination, he means, that the verb _remains the same_ as in the first
person singular! For example: "The second person singular of the imperfect
tense in the subjunctive mood, is also _very frequently varied in its
termination_: as, 'If thou _loved_ him truly, thou wouldst obey
him.'"--_Murray's Gram._, 8vo, p. 209. "The auxiliaries of the potential
mood, when applied to the subjunctive, _do not change_ the termination of
the second person singular; as, 'If thou _mayst_ or _canst_ go.'"--_Ib._,
p. 210. "Some authors think, that the termination of these auxiliaries
_should be varied_: as, I advise thee, that thou _may_ beware."--_Ib._, p.
210. "When the circumstances of contingency and futurity concur, it is
proper _to vary_ the terminations of the second and third persons
singular."--_Ib._, 210. "It may be considered as a rule, that _the changes_
of termination _are necessary_, when these two circumstances
concur."--_Ib._, p. 207. "It may be considered as a rule, that _no changes_
of termination _are necessary_, when these two circumstances
concur."--_Ingersoll's Gram._, p. 264. Now Murray and Ingersoll here _mean_
precisely the same thing! Whose fault is that? If Murray's, he has
committed many such. But, in this matter, he is contradicted not only by
Ingersoll, but, on one occasion, by himself. For he declares it to be an
opinion in which he concurs. "That the definition and nature of the
subjunctive mood, have _no reference_ to change of termination."--_Murray's
Gram._, 8vo, p. 211. And yet, amidst his strange blunders, he seems to have
ascribed the _meaning_ which a verb has in this mood, _to the inflections_
which it receives _in the indicative_: saying. "That part of the verb which
grammarians call the present tense of the subjunctive mood, has a future
signification. _This_ is effected by _varying the terminations_ of the
second and third persons singular of _the indicative_!"--_Ib._, p. 207. But
the absurdity which he really means to teach, is, that the subjunctive mood
_is derived from the indicative_,--the primitive or radical verb, _from
it's derivatives or branches_!
 _Wert_ is sometimes used in lieu of _wast_; and, in such instances,
both by authority and by analogy, it appears to belong here, if anywhere.
See OBS. 2d and 3d, below.
 Some grammarians, regardless of the general usage of authors, prefer
_was_ to _were_ in the singular number of this tense of the subjunctive
mood. In the following remark, the tense is named "_present_" and this
preference is urged with some critical extravagance: "_Was_, though the
past tense of the indicative mood, expresses the _present_ of the
hypothetical; as, 'I wish that I _was_ well.' _The use of this hypothetical
form_ of the subjunctive mood, _has given rise to_ a form of expression
_wholly unwarranted by the rules of grammar_. When the verb _was_ is to be
used in the _present tense singular_, in this form of the subjunctive mood,
the ear is often pained with a _plural were_, as, '_Were I_ your
master'--'_Were he_ compelled to do it,' &c. This has become so common that
some of the best grammars of the language furnish authority for the
barbarism, and even in the second person supply _wert_, as a convenient
accompaniment. If such a conjugation is admitted, we may expect to see
Shakspeare's '_thou beest_' in full use."--_Chandler's Gram._, Ed. of 1821,
p. 55. In "_Chandler's Common School Grammar_," of 1847, the language of
this paragraph is somewhat softened, but the substance is still retained.
See the latter work, p. 80.
 "If I were, If _thou were_. If he were."--_Harrison's Gram._, p. 31.
"If, or though, I were loved. If, or though, _thou were_, or _wert_ loved.
If, or though, he were loved."--_Bicknell's Gram._, Part i, p. 69. "If,
though, &c. I were burned, _thou were_ burned or you were burned, he were
burned."--_Buchanan's Gram._, p. 53. "Though _thou were_. Some say, 'though
thou _wert_.'"--_Mackintosh's Gram._, p. 178. "If or though I were. If or
though _thou were_. If or though he were."--_St. Quentin's General Gram._,
p. 86. "If I was, Thou wast, or You was or were, He was. Or thus: If I
were, Thou wert, or you was or were, He were."--_Webster's Philosophical
Gram._, p. 95; _Improved Gram._, p. 64. "PRESENT TENSE. Before, &c. I _be_;
thou _beest_, or you _be_; he, she, or it, _be_: We, you or ye, they, _be_.
PAST TENSE. Before, &c. I _were_; thou _wert_, or you _were_; he, she, or
it, _were_; We, you or ye, they, _were_."--WHITE, _on the English Verb_, p.
 The text in Acts, xxii, 20th, "I also _was standing_ by, and
_consenting_ unto his death," ought rather to be, "I also _stood_ by, and
_consented_ to his death;" but the present reading is, thus far, a literal
version from the Greek, though the verb "_kept_," that follows, is not.
Montanus renders it literally: "Et ipse _eram astans, et consentiens_
interemptioni ejus, et _custodiens_ vestimenta interficientium illum." Beza
makes it better Latin thus: "Ego quoque _adstabam_, et una _assentiebar_
caedi ipsius, et _custodiebam_ pallia eorum qui interimebant eum." Other
examples of a questionable or improper use of the progressive form may
occasionally be found in good authors; as, "A promising boy of six years of
age, _was missing_ by his parents."--_Whittier, Stranger in Lowell_, p.
100. _Missing, wanting_, and _willing_, after the verb to be, are commonly
reckoned participial _adjectives_; but here "_was missing_" is made a
passive verb, equivalent to _was missed_, which, perhaps, would better
express the meaning. _To miss_, to perceive the absence of, is such an act
of the mind, as seems unsuited to the compound form, _to be missing_; and,
if we cannot say, "The mother _was missing_ her son," I think we ought not
to use the same form passively, as above.
 Some grammarians, contrary to the common opinion, suppose the verbs
here spoken of, to have, not a _passive_, but a _neuter_ signification.
Thus, Joseph Guy, Jun., of London: "Active verbs often take a _neuter_
sense; as, A house is building; here, is _building_ is used in a _neuter_
signification, because it has no object after it. By this rule are
explained such sentences as, Application is wanting; The grammar is
printing; The lottery is drawing; It is flying, &c."--_Guy's English
Gram._, p. 21. "_Neuter_," here, as in many other places, is meant to
include the _active-intransitives_. "_Is flying_" is of this class; and
"_is wanting_," corresponding to the Latin _caret_, appears to be neuter;
hut the rest seem rather to be passives. Tried, however, by the usual
criterion,--the naming of the "_agent_" which, it is said, "a verb passive
necessarily implies,"--what may at first seem progressive passives, may not
always be found such. "_Most_ verbs signifying _action_" says Dr. Johnson,
"may likewise signify _condition_, or _habit_, and become _neuters_, [i. e.
_active-intransitives_;] as _I love_, I am in love; _I strike_, I am now
striking."--_Gram. before Quarto Dict._, p. 7. So _sell, form, make_, and
many others, usually transitive, have sometimes an active-intransitive
sense which nearly approaches the passive, and of which _are selling, is
forming, are making_, and the like, may be only equivalent expressions. For
example: "It is cold, and ice _forms_ rapidly--is _forming_ rapidly--or _is
formed_ rapidly."--Here, with little difference of meaning, is the
appearance of both voices, the Active and the Passive; while "_is
forming_," which some will have for an example of "the _Middle_ voice," may
be referred to either. If the following passive construction is right, _is
wanting_ or _are wanting_ may be a verb of three or four different sorts:
"Reflections that may drive away despair, _cannot be wanting by him_, who
considers," &c.--_Johnson's Rambler_, No. 129: _Wright's Gram._, p. 196.
 Dr. Bullions, in his grammar of 1849, says, "Nobody would think of
saying, 'He is being loved'--'This result is being desired.'"--_Analyt. and
Pract. Gram._, p. 237. But, according to J. W. Wright, whose superiority in
grammar has sixty-two titled vouchers, this unheard-of barbarism is, for
the present passive, precisely and solely what one _ought_ to say! Nor is
it, in fact, any more barbarous, or more foreign from usage, than the
spurious example which the Doctor himself takes for a model in the active
voice: "I _am loving_. Thou _art loving_, &c; I _have been loving_, Thou
_hast been loving_, &c."--_A. and P. Gr._, p. 92. So: "James _is loving_
me."--_Ib._, p 235.
 "The predicate in the form, '_The house is being built_,' would be,
according to our view, 'BEING BEING _built_,' which is manifestly an absurd
tautology."--_Mulligan's Gram._, 1852, p. 151.
 "Suppose a criminal to be _enduring_ the operation of binding:--Shall
we say, with Mr. Murray,--'The criminal is binding?' If so, HE MUST BE
BINDING SOMETHING,--a circumstance, in effect, quite opposed to the fact
presented. Shall we then say, as he does, in the _present tense_
conjugation of his passive verb,--'The criminal is bound?' If so, the
_action_ of binding, which the criminal is suffering, will be represented
as completed, --a position which the _action its self_ will palpably deny."
See _Wright's Phil. Gram._, p. 102. It is folly for a man to puzzle himself
or others thus, with _fictitious examples_, imagined on purpose to make
_good usage seem wrong_. There is bad grammar enough, for all useful
purposes, in the actual writings of valued authors; but who can show, by
any proofs, that the English language, as heretofore written, is so
miserably inadequate to our wants, that we need use the strange neologism,
"The criminal _is being bound_," or any thing similar?
 It is a very strange event in the history of English grammar, that
such a controversy as this should have arisen; but a stranger one still,
that, after all that has been said, more argument is needed. Some men, who
hope to be valued as scholars, yet stickle for an odd phrase, which critics
have denounced as follows: "But the history of the language scarcely
affords a parallel to the innovation, at once unphilosophical and
hypercritical, pedantic and illiterate, which has lately appeared in the
excruciating refinement '_is being_' and its unmerciful variations. We
hope, and indeed believe, that it has not received the sanction of any
grammar adopted in our popular education, as it certainly never will of any
writer of just pretensions to scholarship."--_The True Sun_. N. Y., April
 Education is a work of continuance, yet completed, like many others,
as fast as it goes on. It is not, like the act of loving or hating, so
complete at the first moment as not to admit the progressive form of the
verb; for one may say of a lad, "I _am educating_ him for the law;" and
possibly, "He _is educating_ for the law;" though not so well as, "He _is
to be educated_ for the law." But, to suppose that "_is educated_" or "_are
educated_" implies unnecessarily a _cessation of the educating_ is a
mistake. That conception is right, only when _educated_ is taken
adjectively. The phrase, "those who _are educated_ in our seminaries,"
hardly includes such as _have been educated_ there in times past: much less
does it apply to these exclusively, as some seem to think. "_Being_," as
inserted by Southey, is therefore quite _needless_: so it is _often_, in
this new phraseology, the best correction being its mere omission.
 Worcester has also this citation: "The Eclectic Review remarks, 'That
a need of this phrase, or an equivalent one, is felt, is sufficiently
proved by the extent to which it is used by educated persons and
respectable writers.'"--_Gram. before Dict._, p. xlvi. Sundry phrases,
equivalent in sense to this new voice, have long been in use, and are, of
course, still needed; something from among them being always, by every
accurate writer, still preferred. But this awkward innovation, use it who
will, can no more be justified by a plea of "_need_," than can every other
hackneyed solecism extant. Even the Archbishop, if quoted right by
Worcester, has descended to "uncouth English," without either necessity or
propriety, having thereby only misexpounded a very common Greek word--a
"perfect or pluperfect" participle, which means "_beaten, struck_, or
_having been beaten_"--G. Brown.
 Wells has also the following citations, which most probably accord
with his own opinions, though the first is rather extravagant: "The
propriety of these _imperfect passive tenses_ has been _doubted by almost
all_ our grammarians; though I believe but few of them have written many
pages without condescending to make use of them. Dr. Beattie says, 'One of
the greatest defects of the English tongue, with regard to the verb, seems
to be the want of an _imperfect passive participle_.' And yet he uses the
_imperfect participle_ in a _passive sense_ as often as most
writers."--_Pickbourn's Dissertation on the English Verb_.
"Several other expressions of this sort now and then occur, such as the
new-fangled and most uncouth solecism, 'is being done,' for the good old
English idiomatic expression, 'is doing,'--an absurd periphrasis, driving
out a pointed and pithy turn of the English language."--_N. A. Review_. See
_Wells's Grammar_, 1850, p. 161.
The term, "_imperfect passive tenses_," seems not a very accurate one;
because the present, the perfect, &c., are included. Pickbourn applies it
to any passive tenses formed from the simple "imperfect participle;" but
the phrase, "_passive verbs in the progressive form_," would better express
the meaning. The term, "_compound passive participle_," which Wells applies
above to "_being built_," "_being printed_," and the like, is also both
unusual and inaccurate. Most readers would sooner understand by it the
form, _having been built, having been printed_, &c. This author's mode of
naming participles is always either very awkward or not distinctive. His
scheme makes it necessary to add here, for each of these forms, a third
epithet, referring to his main distinction of "_imperfect_ and _perfect_;"
as, "the compound _imperfect_ participle passive," and "the compound
_perfect_ participle passive." What is "_being builded_" or "_being
printed_," but "an _imperfect passive participle_?" Was this, or something
else, the desideratum of Beattie?
 _Borne_ usually signifies _carried_; _born_ signifies _brought
forth_. J. K. Worcester, the lexicographer, speaks of these two participles
thus: "[Fist] The participle _born_ is used in the passive form, and
_borne_ in the active form, [with reference to birth]; as, 'He was _born_
blind,' _John_ ix.; 'The barren hath _borne_ seven,' I _Sam_. ii. This
distinction between _born_ and _borne_, though not recognized by grammars,
is in accordance with common usage, at least in this country. In many
editions of the Bible it is recognized; and in many it is not. It seems to
have been more commonly recognized in American, than in English,
editions."--_Worcester's Universal and Critical Dict., w. Bear_. In five,
out of seven good American editions of the Bible among my books, the latter
text is, "The barren hath _born_ seven;" in two, it is as above, "hath
_borne_." In Johnson's Quarto Dictionary, the perfect participle of _bear_
is given erroneously, "_bore_, or _born_;" and that of _forbear_, which
should be _forborne_, is found, both in his columns and in his preface,
 According to Murray, Lennie, Bullions, and some others, to use
_begun_ for _began_ or _run_ for _ran_, is improper; but Webster gives
_run_ as well as _ran_ for the preterit, and _begun_ may be used in like
manner, on the authority of Dryden, Pope, and Parnell.
 "And they shall pass through it, hardly _bestead_, and
hungry."--_Isaiah_, viii, 21.
 "_Brake_ [for the preterit of _Break_] seems now obsolescent."--_Dr.
Crombie, Etymol. and Syntax_, p. 193. Some recent grammarians, however,
retain it; among whom are Bullions and M'Culloch. Wells retains it, but
marks it as, "_Obsolete_;" as he does also the preterits _bare, clave,
drove, gat, slang, spake, span, spat, sware, tare, writ_; and the
participles _hoven, loaden, rid_ from _ride, spitten, stricken, and writ_.
In this he is not altogether consistent. Forms really obsolete belong not
to any modern list of irregular verbs; and even such as are archaic and
obsolescent, it is sometimes better to omit. If "_loaden_," for example, is
now out of use, why should "_load, unload_, and _overload_," be placed, as
they are by this author, among "irregular verbs;" while _freight_ and
_distract_, in spite of _fraught_ and _distraught_, are reckoned regular?
"_Rid_," for _rode_ or _ridden_, though admitted by Worcester, appears to
me a low vulgarism.
 _Cleave_, to split, is most commonly, if not always, irregular, as
above; _cleave_, to stick, or adhere, is usually considered regular, but
_clave_ was formerly used in the preterit, and _clove_ still may be: as,
"The men of Judah _clave_ unto their king."--_Samuel_. "The tongue of the
public prosecutor _clove_ to the roof of his mouth."--_Boston Atlas_, 1855.
 Respecting the preterit and the perfect participle of this verb,
_drink_, our grammarians are greatly at variance. Dr. Johnson says,
"preter. _drank_ or _drunk_; part. pass, _drunk_ or _drunken_." Dr.
Webster: "pret. and pp. _drank_. Old pret. and pp. _drunk_; pp. _drunken_."
Lowth: "pret. _drank_; part, _drunk_ or _drunken_." So Stamford. Webber,
and others. Murray has it: "Imperf. _drank_, Perf. Part, _drunk_." So
Comly, Lennie, Bullions, Blair, Butler. Frost, Felton, Goldsbury, and many
others. Churchill cites the text, "Serve me till I have eaten and
_drunken_;" and observes, "_Drunken_ is now used only as an adjective. The
impropriety of using the preterimperfect [_drank_] for the participle of
this verb is very common."--_New Gram._, p. 261. Sanborn gives both forms
for the participle, preferring _drank_ to _drunk_. Kirkham prefers _drunk_
to _drank_; but contradicts himself in a note, by unconsciously making
_drunk_ an adjective: "The men were _drunk_; i. e. inebriated. The toasts
were _drank_."--_Gram._, p. 140. Cardell, in his Grammar, gives, "_drink,
drank, drunk_;" but in his story of Jack Halyard, on page 59, he wrote,
"had _drinked_:" and this, according to Fowle's True English Grammar, is
not incorrect. The preponderance of authority is yet in favour of saying,
"had _drunk_;" but _drank_ seems to be a word of greater delicacy, and
perhaps it is sufficiently authorized. A hundred late writers may be quoted
for it, and some that were popular in the days of Johnson. "In the choice
of what is fit to be eaten and _drank_."--_Beattie's Moral Science_, Vol.
1, p. 51. "Which I had no sooner _drank_."--_Addison, Tattler_, No. 131.
"Thy brother's blood the thirsty earth hath drank,
Broach'd with the steely point of Clifford's lance."--_Shakspeare_.
 "_Holden_ is not in general use; and is chiefly employed by
attorneys."--_Crombie, on Etymology and Synt._, p. 190. Wells marks this
word as, "Obsolescent."--_School Gram._, p. 103. L. Murray rejected it; but
Lowth gave it alone, as a participle, and _held_ only as a preterit.
 "I have been found guilty of killing cats I never
_hurted_."--_Roderick Random_, Vol. i, p. 8.
 "They _keeped_ aloof as they passed her bye."--_J. Hogg, Pilgrims of
the Sun_, p. 19.
 _Lie_, to be at rest, is irregular, as above; but _lie_, to utter
falsehood, is regular, as follows: _lie, lied, lying, lied_.
"Thus said, at least, my mountain guide,
Though deep, perchance, the villain _lied_."
--_Scott's Lady of the Lake_.
 Perhaps there is authority sufficient to place the verb _rend_ among
those which are redundant.
"Where'er its cloudy veil was _rended_."
--_Whittier's Moll Pitcher_.
"Mortal, my message is for thee; thy chain to earth is _rended_;
I bear thee to eternity; prepare! thy course is ended."
"Come as the winds come, when forests are _rended_."
--_Sir W. Scott_.
"The hunger pangs her sons which rended."
--NEW QUARTERLY REVIEW: _Examiner_, No. 119.
 We find now and then an instance in which _gainsay_ is made regular:
as, "It can neither be _rivalled_ nor _gainsayed_."--_Chapman's Sermons to
Presbyterians_, p. 36. Perhaps it would be as well to follow Webster here,
in writing _rivaled_ with one _l_: and the analogy of the simple verb
_say_, in forming this compound irregularly, _gainsaid_. Usage warrants the
latter, however, better than the former.
 "Shoe, _shoed_ or shod, shoeing, _shoed_ or shod."--_Old Gram., by W.
Ward_, p. 64; and _Fowle's True English Gram._, p. 46.
 "A. Murray has rejected _sung_ as the _Preterite_, and L. Murray has
rejected _sang_. Each _Preterite_, however, rests on good authority. The
same observation may be made, respecting _sank_ and _sunk_. Respecting the
_preterites_ which have _a_ or _u_, as _slang_, or _slung, sank_, or
_sunk_, it would be better were the former only to be used, as the
_Preterite_ and Participle would thus be discriminated."--_Dr. Crombie, on
Etymology and Syntax_, p. 199. The _preterits_ which this critic thus
prefers, are _rang, sang, stung, sprang, swang, sank, shrank, slank, stank,
swam_, and _span_ for _spun_. In respect to them all, I think he makes an
ill choice. According to his own showing, _fling, string_, and _sting_,
always make the preterit and the participle alike; and this is the obvious
tendency of the language, in all these words. I reject _slang_ and _span_,
as derivatives from _sling_ and _spin_; because, in such a sense, they are
obsolete, and the words have other uses. Lindley Murray, _in his early
editions_, rejected _sang, sank, slang, swang, shrank, slank, stank_, and
_span_; and, at the same time, preferred _rang, sprang_, and _swam_, to
_rung, sprung_, and _swum_. In his later copies, he gave the preference to
the _u_, in all these words; but restored _sang_ and _sank_, which Crombie
names above, still omitting the other six, which did not happen to be
mentioned to him.
 _Sate_ for the preterit of _sit_, and _sitten_ for the perfect
participle, are, in my opinion, obsolete, or no longer in good use. Yet
several recent grammarians prefer _sitten_ to _sat_; among whom are
Crombie, Lennie, Bullions, and M'Culloch. Dr. Crombie says, "_Sitten_,
though formerly in use, is now obsolescent. Laudable attempts, however,
have been made to restore it."--_On Etymol. and Syntax_, p. 199. Lennie
says, "Many authors, both here and in America, use _sate_ as the Past time
of _sit_; but this is improper, for it is apt to be confounded with _sate_
to glut. _Sitten_ and _spitten_ are preferable [to _sat_ and _spit_,]
though obsolescent."--_Principles of E. Gram._, p. 45. Bullions says,
"_Sitten_ and _spitten_ are nearly obsolete, though preferable to _sat_ and
_spit_."--_Principles of E. Gram._, p. 64. M'Culloch gives these verbs in
the following form: "Sit, sat, sitten _or_ sat. Spit, spit _or_ spat, spit
_or_ spitten."--_Manual of E. Gram._, p. 65.
 "He will find the political hobby which he has _bestrided_ no child's
nag."--_The Vanguard, a Newspaper_.
"Through the pressed nostril, spectacle-_bestrid_."--_Cowper_.
"A lank haired hunter _strided_."--_Whittier's Sabbath Scene_.
 In the age of Pope, _writ_ was frequently used both for the
participle and for the preterit of this verb. It is now either obsolete or
peculiar to the poets. In prose it seems vulgar: as, "He _writ_ it, at
least, published it, in 1670."--_Barclay's Works_, Vol. i, p. 77.
"He, who, supreme in judgement, as in wit,
Might boldly censure, as he boldly _writ_."--_Pope, Ess. on Crit._
Dr. Crombie remarked, more than thirty years ago, that, "_Wrote_ as the
Participle [of _Write_,] is generally disused, and likewise
_writ_."--_Treatise on Etym. and Synt._, p. 202.
 A word is not necessarily _ungrammatical_ by reason of having a rival
form that is more common. The regular words, _beseeched, blowed, bursted,
digged, freezed, bereaved, hanged, meaned, sawed, showed, stringed,
weeped_, I admit for good English, though we find them all condemned by
 "And the man in whom the evil spirit was, _leapt_ on them."--FRIENDS'
BIBLE: _Acts_, xix, 16. In Scott's Bible, and several others, the word is
"_leaped_." Walker says, "The past time of this verb is _generally_ heard
with the diphthong short; and if so, it ought to be spelled _leapt_,
rhyming with _kept_."--_Walker's Pron. Dict., w. Leap_. Worcester, who
improperly pronounces _leaped_ in two ways, "l~ept or l=ept," _misquotes_
Walker, as saying, "it ought to be spelled _lept_."--_Universal and
Critical Dict., w. Leap_. In the solemn style, _leaped_ is, of course, two
syllables. As for _leapedst_ or _leaptest_, I know not that either can be
 _Acquit_ is almost always formed regularly, thus: _acquit, acquitted,
acquitting, acquitted._ But, like _quit_, it is sometimes found in an
irregular form also; which, if it be allowable, will make it redundant: as,
"To be _acquit_ from my continual smart."--SPENCER: _Johnson's Dict._ "The
writer holds himself _acquit_ of all charges in this regard."--_Judd, on
the Revolutionary War_, p. 5. "I am glad I am so _acquit_ of this
"Not know my voice! O, time's extremity!
Hast thou so crack'd and _splitted_ my poor tongue?"
--SHAK.: _Com. of Er._
 _Whet_ is made redundant in Webster's American Dictionary, as well as
in Wells's Grammar; but I can hardly affirm that the irregular form of it
is well authorized.
 In S. W. Clark's Practical Grammar, first published in 1847--a work
of high pretensions, and prepared expressly "for the education of
Teachers"--_sixty-three_ out of the foregoing ninety-five Redundant Verbs,
are treated as having no regular or no irregular forms. (1.) The following
twenty-nine are _omitted_ by this author, as if they were _always regular_;
belay, bet, betide, blend, bless, curse, dive, dress, geld, lean, leap,
learn, mulet, pass, pen, plead, prove, rap, reave, roast, seethe, smell,
spoil, stave, stay, wake, wed, whet, wont. (2.) The following thirty-four
are _given_ by him as being _always irregular_; abide, bend, beseech, blow,
burst, catch, chide, creep, deal, freeze, grind, hang, knit, lade, lay,
mean, pay, shake, sleep, slide, speed, spell, spill, split, string, strive,
sweat, sweep, thrive, throw, weave, weep, wet, wind. Thirty-two of the
ninety-five are made redundant by him, though not so called in his book.
In Wells's School Grammar, "the 113th Thousand," dated 1850, the
deficiencies of the foregoing kinds, if I am right, are about fifty. This
author's "List of Irregular Verbs" has forty-four Redundants, to which he
assigns a regular form as well as an irregular. He is here about as much
nearer right than Clark, as this number surpasses thirty-two, and comes
towards ninety-five. The words about which they differ, are--_pen, seethe_,
and _whet_, of the former number; and _catch, deal, hang, knit, spell,
spill, sweat_, and _thrive_, of the latter.
 In the following example, there is a different phraseology, which
seems not so well suited to the sense: "But we _must be aware_ of
imagining, that we render style strong and expressive, by a constant and
multiplied use of epithets"--_Blair's Rhet._, p. 287. Here, in stead of
"_be aware_," the author should have said, "_beware_," or "_be ware_;" that
is, be _wary_, or _cautious_; for _aware_ means _apprised_, or _informed_,
a sense very different from the other.
 Dr. Crombie contends that _must_ and _ought_ are used only in the
present tense. (See his _Treatise_, p. 204.) In this he is wrong,
especially with regard to the latter word. Lennie, and his copyist
Bullions, adopt the same notion; but Murray, and many others, suppose them
to "have both a present and [a] past signification."
 Dr. Crombie says, "This Verb, as an auxiliary, is _inflexible_; thus
we say, 'he _will_ go;' and 'he _wills to_ go.'"--_Treatise on Etym. and
Syntax_, p. 203. He should have confined his remarks to the _familiar
style_, in which all the auxiliaries, except _do, be_, and _have_, are
inflexible. For, in the solemn style, we do not say, "Thou _will_ go," but,
"Thou _wilt_ go."
 "HAD-I-WIST. A proverbial expression, _Oh_ that I had known.
_Gower_."--_Chalmers's Dict._, also _Webster's_. In this phrase, which is
here needlessly compounded, and not very properly explained, we see _wist_
used as a perfect participle. But the word is obsolete. "_Had I wist_," is
therefore an obsolete phrase, meaning. If I had known, or, "_O_ that I had
 That is, passive verbs, as well as others, have three participles for
each; so that, from one active-transitive root, there come _six_
participles--three active, and three passive. Those numerous grammarians
who, like Lindley Murray, make passive verbs a distinct class, for the most
part, very properly state the participles of a _verb_ to be "_three_;" but,
to represent the two voices as modifications of one species of verbs, and
then say, "The Participles are _three_," as many recent writers do, is
manifestly absurd: because _two threes should be six_. Thus, for example,
Dr. Bullions: "In English [,] the _transitive_ verb has always _two
voices_, the Active and [the] Passive."--_Prin. of E. Gram._, p. 33. "The
Participles are _three_, [:] the Present, the _Perfect_, and the _Compound
Perfect_."--_Ib._, p. 57. Again: "_Transitive_ verbs have two voices,
called the _Active_ and the _Passive_."--_Bullions's Analyt. and Pract.
Gram._, p. 66. "Verbs have _three_ participles--the _present_, the _past_,
and the _perfect_; as, _loving, loved, having loved_, in the active voice:
AND _being loved, loved, having been loved_, in the passive."--_Ib._, p.
76. Now either not all these are the participles of _one_ verb, or that
verb has _more than three_. Take your choice. Redundant verbs usually have
_duplicate forms_ of all the participles except the Imperfect Active; as,
_lighting, lighted_ or _lit, having lighted_ or _having lit_; so again,
_being lighted_ or _being lit, lighted_ or _lit, having been lighted_ or
_having been lit_.
 The diversity in the _application_ of these names, and in the number
or nature of the participles recognized in different grammars, is quite as
remarkable as that of the names themselves. To prepare a general synopsis
of this discordant teaching, no man will probably think it worth his while.
The following are a few examples of it:
1. "How many Participles, are there; There are two, the Active Participle
which ends in (ing), as burning, and the Passive Participle which ends in
(ed) as, burned."--_The British Grammar_, p. 140. In this book, the
participles of _Be_ are named thus: "ACTIVE. Being. PASSIVE. Been, having
been."--_Ib._, p. 138.
2. "How many _Sorts_ of Participles are there? _A_. Two; the Active
Participle, that ends always in _ing_; as, _loving_, and the Passive
Participle, that ends always in _ed, t_, or _n_; as, _loved, taught,
slain_."--_Fisher's Practical New Gram._, p. 75.
3. "ACTIVE VOICE. _Participles_. Present, calling. Past, having called.
Future, being about to call. PASSIVE VOICE. Present, being called. Past,
having been called. Future, being about to be called."--_Ward's Practical
Gram._, pp. 55 and 59.
4. ACT. "Present, loving; Perfect, loved; Past, having loved."--_Lowth's
Gram._, p. 39. The participles _passive_ are not given by Lowth; but, by
inference from his rule for forming "the passive verb," they must be these:
"Present, being loved; Perfect, loved, or been loved; Past, having been
loved." See _Lowth's Gram._, p. 44.
5. "ACT. V. _Present_, Loving. _Past_, Loved. _Perfect_, Having loved. PAS.
V. _Pres_. Being loved. _Past_, Loved. _Perf_. Having been
loved."--_Lennie's Gram._, pp. 25 and 33; _Greene's Analysis_, p. 225;
_Bullions's Analyt. and Pract. Gram._, pp. 87 and 95. This is Bullions's
_revised_ scheme, and much worse than his former one copied from Murray.
6. ACT. "_Present._ Loving. _Perfect._ Loved. _Compound Perfect_, Having
loved." PAS. "_Present._ Being loved. _Perfect or Passive._ Loved.
_Compound Perfect._ Having been loved."--_L. Murray's late editions_, pp.
98 and 99; _Hart's Gram._, pp. 85 and 88; _Bullions's Principles of E.
Gram._, pp. 47 and 55. No form or name of the first participle passive was
adopted by Murray in his early editions.
7. ACT. "Present. Pursuing. Perfect. Pursued. Compound perfect. Having
pursued." PAS. "_Present and Perfect_. Pursued, or being pursued. _Compound
Perfect_. Having been pursued."--_Rev. W. Allen's Gram._, pp. 88 and 93.
Here the first two passive forms, and their names too, are thrown together;
the former as equivalents, the latter as coalescents.
8. "TRANSITIVE. _Pres._ Loving, _Perf._ Having loved. PASSIVE. _Pres._
Loved or Being loved, _Perf._ Having been loved."--_Parkhurst's Gram. for
Beginners_, p. 110. Here the second active form is wanting; and the second
passive is confounded with the first.
9. ACT. "_Imperfect_, Loving [;] _Perfect_, Having loved [.]" PAS.
"_Imperfect_, Being loved [;] _Perfect_, Loved, Having been
loved."--_Wells's School Gram._, pp. 99 and 101. Here, too, the second
active is not given; the third is called by the name of the second; and the
second passive is confounded with the _third_, as if they were but forms of
the same thing.
10. ACT. "_Imperfect_, (_Present_,) Loving. _Perfect_. Having loved.
_Auxiliary Perfect_, Loved." PAS. "_Imperfect_, (_Present_,) Being loved.
_Perfect_, Having been loved. _Passive_, Loved."--_N. Butler's Pract.
Gram._, pp. 84 and 91. Here the common order of most of the participles is
very improperly disturbed, and as many are misnamed.
11. ACT. "Present, Loving [;] Perfect, Loved [;] Comp. Perf. Having loved
[.]" PAS. "Present, Being loved [;] Perfect, Loved, or been loved [;]
Compound Perfect, Having been loved."--_Frazee's Improved Gram._, 63 and
73. Here the second participle passive has two forms, one of which, "_been
loved_," is not commonly recognized, except as part of some passive verb or
12. ACT. V. "_Imperfect_, Seeing. _Perfect_, Seen. _Compound_, Having
seen." PAS. V. "_Preterimperfect_, Being seen. _Preterperfect_, Having been
seen."--_Churchill's New Gram._, p. 102. Here the chief and radical passive
participle is lacking, and neither of the compounds is well named.
13. ACT. "_Present_, Loving, [;] _Past_, Loved, [;] _Com. Past_, Having
loved." PAS. "_Present_, Being loved. [;] _Past_, Loved. [;] _Com. Past._
[,] Having been loved."--_Felton's Analyt. and Pract. Gram._, of 1843, pp.
37 and 50.
14. ACT. "Present. [,] Loving. [;] Perfect. [,] Loved. [;] Compound
Perfect. [,] Having loved." PAS. "Perfect or Passive. Loved. Compound
Perfect. Having been loved."--_Bicknell's Gram. Lond._, 1790, Part I, pp.
66 and 70; _L. Murray's_ 2d _Edition, York_, 1796, pp. 72 and 77. Here
"_Being loved_," is not noticed.
15. "_Participles. Active Voice. Present._ Loving. _Past_. Loved, or having
loved. _Participles. Passive Voice. Present._ Being loved. _Past_. Having
been loved."--_John Burn's Practical Gram._, p. 70. Here the chief Passive
term, "Loved," is omitted, and two of the active forms are confounded.
16. "_Present_, loving, _Past_, loved, _Compound_, having loved."--_S. W.
Clark's Practical Gram._, of 1848, p. 71. "ACT. VOICE.--_Present_ ...
Loving [;] _Compound_ [,] Having loved...... _Having been loving_."--_Ib._,
p. 81. "PAS. VOICE.--_Present_..... Loved, or, being loved [;]
_Compound_..... Having been loved."--_Ib._, p. 83. "The Compound Participle
consists of _the_ Participle of a principal verb, added to the word
_having_, or _being_, or to the two words _having been_. Examples--Having
loved--_being loved_--having been loved."--_Ib._, p. 71. Here the second
extract is _deficient_, as may be seen by comparing it with the first; and
the fourth is _grossly erroneous_, as is shown by the third. The
participles, too, are misnamed throughout.
The reader may observe that the _punctuation_ of the foregoing examples is
very discrepant. I have, in brackets, suggested some corrections, but have
not attempted a general adjustment of it.
 "The _most unexceptionable_ distinction which grammarians make
between the participles, is, that the one points to the continuation of the
action, passion, or state denoted by the verb; and the other, to the
completion of it. Thus, the present participle signifies _imperfect_
action, or action begun and not ended: as, 'I am _writing_ a letter.' The
past participle signifies action _perfected_, or finished: as, 'I have
_written_ a letter.'--'The letter is written.'"--_Murray's Grammar_, 8vo,
p. 65. "The first [participle] expresses a _continuation_; the other, a
_completion_."--_W. Allen's Grammar_, 12mo, London, 1813. "The idea which
this participle [e.g. '_tearing_'] really expresses, is simply that of the
_continuance_ of an action in an _incomplete_ or _unfinished_ state. The
action may belong to time _present_, to time _past_, or to time _future_.
The participle which denotes the _completion_ of an action, as _torn_, is
called the _perfect_ participle; because it represents the action as
_perfect_ or _finished_."--_Barnard's Analytic Gram._, p. 51. Emmons
stealthily copies from my Institutes as many as ten lines in defence of the
term '_Imperfect_' and yet, in his conjugations, he calls the participle in
_ing_, "_Present_." This seems inconsistent. See his "_Grammatical
Instructer_," p. 61.
 "The ancient termination (from the Anglo-Saxon) was _and_; as, 'His
_schynand_ sword.' Douglas. And sometimes _ende_; as, 'She, between the
deth and life, _Swounende_ lay full ofte.' Gower."--_W. Allen's Gram._, p.
88. "The present Participle, in Saxon, was formed by _ande, ende_, or
_onde_; and, by cutting off the final _e_, it acquired a Substantive
signification, and extended the idea to the agent: as, _alysende_, freeing,
and _alysend_, a redeemer; _freonde_, loving or friendly, and _freond_, a
lover or a friend."--_Booth's Introd. to Dict._, p. 75.
 William B. Fowle, a modern disciple of Tooke, treats the subject of
grammatical time rather more strangely than his master. Thus: "How many
times or tenses have verbs? _Two_, [the] present and [the] _past_," To this
he immediately adds in a note: "We _do not believe_ in a _past_ any more
than a future tense of verbs."--_The True English Gram._, p. 30. So,
between these two authors, our verbs will retain no tenses at all. Indeed,
by his two tenses, Fowle only meant to recognize the two simple forms of an
English verb. For he says, in an other place, "We repeat our conviction
that no verb in itself expresses time of any sort."--_Ib._, p. 69,
 "STONE'-BLIND," "STONE'-COLD," and "STONE'-DEAD," are given in
Worcester's Dictionary, as compound _adjectives_; and this is perhaps their
best classification; but, if I mistake not, they are usually accented quite
as strongly on the latter syllable, as on the former, being spoken rather
as two emphatic words. A similar example from Sigourney, "I saw an infant
_marble cold_," is given by Frazee under this Note: "Adjectives sometimes
belong to other adjectives; as, '_red hot_ iron.'"--_Improved Gram._, p.
141. But Webster himself, from whom this doctrine and the example are
borrowed, (see his Rule XIX,) makes "RED'-HOT" but one word in his
Dictionary; and Worcester gives it as one word, in a less proper form, even
without a hyphen, "RED'HOT."
 "OF ENALLAGE.--The construction which may be reduced to this figure
in English, chiefly appears when one part of speech, is used with the power
and effect of another."--_Ward's English Gram._, p. 150.
 _Forsooth_ is _literally_ a word of affirmation or assent, meaning
_for truth_, but it is now almost always used _ironically_: as, "In these
gentlemen whom the world _forsooth_ calls wise and solid, there is
generally either a moroseness that persecutes, or a dullness that tires
you."--_Home's Art of Thinking_, p. 24.
 In most instances, however, the words _hereof, thereof_, and
_whereof_, are placed after _nouns_, and have nothing to do with any
_verb_. They are therefore not properly _adverbs_, though all our
grammarians and lexicographers call them so. Nor are they _adjectives_;
because they are not used adjectively, but rather in the sense of a pronoun
governed by _of_; or, what is nearly the same thing, in the sense of the
possessive or genitive case. Example: "And the fame _hereof_ went
abroad."--_Matt._, ix, 26. That is, "the fame _of this miracle_;" which
last is a better expression, the other being obsolete, or worthy to be so,
on account of its irregularity.
 _Seldom_ is sometimes compared in this manner, though not frequently;
as, "This kind of verse occurs the _seldomest_, but has a happy effect in
diversifying the melody."--_Blair's Rhet._, p. 385. In former days, this
word, as well as its correlative _often_, was sometimes used _adjectively_;
as, "Thine _often_ infirmities."--_1 Tim._, v, 23. "I hope God's Book hath
not been my _seldomest_ lectures."--_Queen Elizabeth_, 1585. John Walker
has regularly compared the adverb _forward_: in describing the latter L, he
speaks of the tip of the tongue as being "brought a little _forwarder_ to
the teeth."--_Pron. Dict., Principles_, No. 55.
 A few instances of the _regular inflection_ of adverbs ending in
_ly_, may be met with in _modern_ compositions, as in the following
comparisons: "As melodies will sometimes ring _sweetlier_ in the
echo."--_The Dial_, Vol. i, p. 6. "I remember no poet whose writings would
_safelier_ stand the test."--_Coleridge's Biog. Lit._, Vol. ii, p. 53.
 De Sacy, in his Principles of General Grammar, calls the relative
pronouns "_Conjunctive Adjectives_." See _Fosdick's Translation_, p. 57. He
also says, "The words _who, which_, etc. are not the only words which
connect the function of a Conjunction with another design. There are
Conjunctive _Nouns_ and _Adverbs_, as well as Adjectives; and a
characteristic of these words is, that we can substitute for them another
form of expression in which shall be found the words _who, which_, etc.
Thus, _when, where, what, how, as_, and many others, are Conjunctive words:
[as,] 'I shall finish _when_ I please;' that is, 'I shall finish _at the
time at which_ I please.'--'I know not _where_ I am;' i.e. 'I know not _the
place in which_ I am.'"--_Ib._, p. 58. In respect to the conjunctive
_adverbs_, this is well enough, so far as it goes; but the word _who_
appears to me to be a pronoun, and not an adjective; and of his
"_Conjunctive Nouns_," he ought to have given us some examples, if he knew
 "Now the Definition of a CONJUNCTION is as follows--_a Part of