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smoky air of London. “ The new Albany road,"
· That New Zealand provision ship.”
“Some English East India Company's tea ships."
A beaver hat, a beaver trap, a beaver pond, the beaver trade.
195. Some nouns, from the nature of the case, require their adjectives in closer connexion than others, in their descriptive application.
An American ship means one owned and navigated by Americans ; but a China ship is merely engaged in the China trade, without being owned or managed by Chinese, either wholly or in part.
“A very thick headed gentleman's cane."
Liverpool deep blue earthern pitchers."
“ An elegant lady's lace veil.”.
Describing adjectives refer to general ideas and expressions : as, “Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.” Here the thing which is good and pleasant, is, the dwelling together of brethren in unity.
196 Other adjectives were formerly compared by adding the superlative form to the comparative ; as, Uppish up upper upperest, or uppermost,
bet better, betterest bettermost
in inner innermost inmost The word bet is no longer used as an adjective; but, as a noun, retains, virtually the same meaning. “ To make a bet,” is to substantiate an assertion, to make it good by a pledge. The word good, originally God, has gradually come into use in its present form as an adjective. The ancient Persian name of the deity, Goda, is extensively diffused through northern Europe and Asia, and is now in use by many other nations, as well as ourselves. We have more recently adopted godlike and godly from the same primitive word.
197. Several other forms, anciently prevailed, which in the progress of time, have been changed ; or only retained in part of their forms; as, Мо mo-est
more and most. Most adjectives, of more than one syllable, make the comparative and superlative degrees by placing before or after them the words more, most; less, least. These words, so joined with adjectives, are considered as adverbs : but less and most are frequently joined to an adjective, as parts of one compound word.
198. It has been objected to the present general system of teaching grammar, that it is addressed solely to the memory, as a mere form of words, without employing the reasoning faculties. This objection does not appear to be entirely true ; for, by laying down arbitrary rules without reason, the student is left at full liberty to find proofs and
arguments for himself. In the exercise of this privilege it may be well to inquire why the comparatives of some adjectives can not be construed with than : such, for instance, as inner, outer, upper, anterior, posterior, exterior, interior, superior, inferior, and others.
There are, in logic and philosophy, two kinds of comparison; that of like qualities, existing in different degrees; or the comparison of similitude : and that of attributes and relations opposed to each other; or the comparison of contrast. It would be childishness to say the inside of a vessel is inner than the outside. To say that heat is warmer than cold is not comparing degrees of quality; and it is certainly not giving information to any one who previously knows the meaning of the words. One thing is brighter than an other, when both are bright in different degrees.
When the west side of the town is mentioned, it is understood, of course, that the other sides are not west, and therefore there is no comparison between them, but simply that of local relation.
199. Some adjectives are compared, not by their own direct forms, but by habitual connexion with other words, as down, more and most completely down.
It appeared necessary to be more particular in trying to explain adjectives; because the system attempted in this work, so greatly varies from the theory long received and taught, that it must encounter opposition from those, whose prejudices, self-interest, or honest difference of opinion, will lead them to defend the antecedent course, as being necessarily right, because it has long been practised.
200. Verb is derived from the Latin, verbum, a word. This term is applied, by way of eminence, to mark the importance of this part of speech, as the foundation of language: for there can be no possible operation of human thought, but by its instrumentality. Verbs are words signifying action; as the horse
the birds sing ; we live, inove, and have our being: I am here; he is well; La Fayette aided America.
Actions' necessarily suppose an agent, or acting power to produce them: this idea, like many others on which the structure of speech depends, is to be understood 'as the great leading principle, and, though subject to no real exception, has various secondary modifications, as adapted to the diversified nature of things.
201. Verbs do not always imply direct, perceivable action; but that kind of affirmation, which for all purposes of discourse, is perfectly equivalent to it; as, a man going by accident against a rock, says, " It hurt me.” This it will be readily seen, does not contradict; but is only a modification of the broad rule : for though the rock, in this instance, does not obviously act, as an agent, yet it does operate as a cause, producing the effect of hurting the man. The rock in this case hurts the
person, not by its visible action or motion ; but by its inherent nature. The apple hangs on the tree; the glass stands on the table; the ship sails well, are the same kind of assertion, so far as language is concerned, as the bird flies; “the horse runs."
The degree of activity forms no rule for classifying verbs; and the motives of action belongs not to the essential structure of speech. To say the beam fell, and killed the man, is, for all the purposes of speech, precisely the same kind of action, as to assert that one man killed an other with premeditated malice.
202. Verbs are divided into regular and irregular. The regular verbs form the past tense and participle, by adding d or ed; as please, pleased; treat, treated.
All which differ from this form are irregular; as, know, knew, known; drive, drove, driven. Other verbs have no variation of tense; and these also are classed among the irregular; as, cost, cost, cost ; split, split, split.
Verbs are again divided by grammarians into transitive and intransitive; according as they suppose the action represented terminates on some object, or is confined to what is generally and vaguely affirmed of the subject, independent of any thing which the verb affects.
Example of the transitive verb; “ Franklin invented the lightning rod.” Here, Franklin is the subject of the verb; that is, the agent, the actor, or nominative word; invented is the verb expressing the action; lightning rod is the object, to which the action tends, and on which it terminates.
203. Writers on logic and mental philosophy explain this principle in different words ; but amounting to the same thing.
John strikes Thomas.
He strikes him. John is the predicate or subject of a proposition ; strikes contains the affirmation or assertion, respecting that subject; and Thomas is the object to which the affirmation tends, and at which it terminates.