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ing cf the rule," tic.; which is the same as, "Much depends on Tyro's observance of the rule." But, as this construction sounds rather harshly, it would, in general, he hetter to express the sentiment in the following, or some other form: ''Much depeuds on the rule's being observed;and error will be the consequence of its being neglected:" or—" on observing the rule; and—of neglecting it." i his remark may be applied to several other modes of expression to be found in this work; which, though they are contended for as strictly correct, are not always the most eligible, on account of their unpleasant sound. See pages 45, 46, 65, 66,176—179.
We sometimes meet with expressions like the following: "Informing^/ his sentences, he was very exact;" "From calling of names, he proceeded to blows." But this is incorrect language; for prepositions do not, like articles and pronouns, convert the participle itself into the nature of a substantive; as we have shown above in the phrase, "By observing which." And yet the participle with its adjuncts, may be considered as a substantive phrase in the objective case, governed by the preposition or verb, expressed or understood: as, "By promising much, and performing but little, we hecome despicable." "He studied to avoid expressing himself too severely."
3. As the perfect participle and the imperfect tense, are sometimes different in their form, care must be taken that they be not indiscriminately used. It is frequently said, "He begun," for "he began;" "he run," for " he ran;" " He drunk,?' for " he drank;" the participle being here used instead of the imperfect tense: and much more frequently the imperfect tense instead of the participle: as, "I had wrote," for"I had written:" " I was chose," for "I was chosen;" "I have eat," for "I have eaten." "His words were interwove with sighs;" "were interwoven." "He would have spoke;" "spoken." "He hath bore witness to his faithful servant;" "borne" " By this means he over-run his guide;" " over-ran.'" "The sun has rose;" "risen." "His constitution has been greatly shook, but his mind is too strong to be shook by such causes;" " shaken," in both places. "They were verses wrote on glass;" "written." "Philosophers have often mistook the source of true happiness:" it ought to be, "mistaken."
The participle ending in ed is often improperly contracted, by changing ed into t: as, "In good hehaviour, he is not »urpast by any pupil of the school." "She was much distrest." Tiny ought to he, "surpassed" " distressed."
When a substantive is put absolutely, and does not agree with the following verb, it remains independent on the participle, and is called the case absolute, or the nominative absolute: as, "The painter being entirely confined to that part of time he has chosen, the picture comprises but very few incidents." Here the painter agrees with no verb, as the verb comprises, which follows, agrees with picture. But when the substantive preceding the participle agrees with the subsequent verh, it loses its absoluteness, and is like every other nominative: as, "The painter, being entirely confined to that part of time which he has chosen, cannot exhibit various stages of the same action." In this sentence we see that the painter governs, or agrees with, the verb can, as its nominative case. In the following sentence, a still different construction takes place: "The painter's being entirely confined to that part of time which he has chosen, deprives him of the power of exhibiting various stages of the same action." In this sentence, if we inquire for the nominative case, by asking, what deprives the painter of the power of exhibiting various stages of the same action, we shall find it to be, the confinement of the painter to that part of time which he has chosen; and this stale of things belonging to the painter governs it in the possessive case, and forms the compound nominative to the verb deprives.
In the sentence, "What think you of my horse's running to day ?" it is implied that the horse did actually run. If it is said,(i What think you of my horse running to-day?" it is intended to ask, whether it be proper for my horse to run to-day. This distinction, though frequently disregarded, deserves attention; for it is obvious, that ambiguity may arise, from using the latter*only of these phraseologies, to express both meanings.
The active participle is frequently introduced without an obvious reference to any noun or pronoun: as, "Generally speaking, his conduct was very honourable:" "Granting ibis tobe true, what is to be inferred from it?" "It is scarcely possible, to act otherwise, considering the frailty of human nature." In these sentences, there is no noun expressed or implied, to which speaking, granting, and considering can be referred. The most natural construction seems to be, that a pronoun is to be understood : as, " We considering the frailty of human nature," &c. j " /granting this to be true," &c.
The word the, before the active participle, in the following sentences, and in all others of a similar construction, is improper, and should be omitted: "This style may be more properly called the talking upon paper than writing:" "The advising, or the attempting, to excite such disturbances, is uulawful:" " The taking from another what is his, without his knowledge or allowance, is called stealing." They should be; "May be called talking upon paper;" "Advising or attempting to excite disturbances;" "Taking from another what is his," &c .
In some of these sentences, the infinitive mood might very properly be adopted: as, "To advise or attempt:" "To take from another," &tc.
Adverbs, though they have no government of case, tense, &c. require an appropriate situation in the sentence, viz. for the most part, before adjectives, after verbs active or neuter, and frequently between the auxiliary and the verb: asi "He made a very sensible discourse; he spoke unaffectedly and forcibly; and was attentively heard by the whole assembly."
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See Vol. ii. Part 3. Exercises. Chap. 1. Rule Ij.
A Few instances of erroneous positions of adverbs may serve to illustrate the rule. "He must not expect to find study agreeable always;" "always agreeable." "We always find them ready when we want them;" "we find them always ready," &c. "Dissertations on the prophecies which have remarkably been fulfilled;" "which have been remarkably." "Instead of looking contemptuously down on the crooked in mind or in body, we should look up thankfully to God, who hath made us better;" "instead of looking down contemptuously, &c. we should thankfully look up" &c. "If thou art blessed naturally with a good memory, continually exercise it;" "naturally blessed," &c. "exercise it continually."
Sometimes the adverb is placed with propriety before the verb, or at some distance after it; sometimes between the two auxiliaries; and sometimes after them both; as in the following examples. "Vice always creeps by degrees, and insensibly twines around us those concealed fetters, by which we are at last completely bound." "He encouraged the English Barons to carry their opposition farther-" "They compelled him to declare that he would abjure the realm for ever;" instead of,"to carry farther their opposition;" and "to abjure for ever the realm," "He has generally been recktmed an honest man:" "Toe book may aheays be had at such a place;" in preference to "has been generally;" and "may be always." "These rules will be clearly understood, after they have been diligently studied," are preferable to, "These rules will clearly be understood, after they have diligently been studied."
When verbs are emphatical, they may introduce a sentence, and be separated from the word to which they belong: as, "How completely this most amiable of human virtues, had taken possession of his soul!" This position of the adverb is most frequent in interrogative and exclamatory phrases.
From the preceding remarks and examples, it appears that no exact and determinate rule can be given for the placing of adverbs, on all occasions. The general rule may be of considerable use: but the easy flow and perspicuity of the phrase, are the things which ought to be chiefly regarded.
The adverb there is often used as an expletive, or as a word that adds nothing to the sense: in which case it precedes the verb and the nominative noun: as, "There is a person at the door f " There are some thieves in the house;" which would be as well, or better, expressed by saying, "A person is at the door;" "Some thieves are in the house." Sometimes it is made use of to give a small degree of emphasis to the sentence: as, " There was a man sent from God, whose name was John." When it is applied in its strict sense, it principally follows the verb and the nominative case: as, "The man stands there."
1. The adverb never generally precedes the verb: as, "I never was there;" " He never comes at a proper time." When an auxiliary is used, it is placed indifferently, either before or after this adverb: as, " He was never seen (or never was seen) to laugh from that time." Never seems to be improperly used in the following passages. "Ask me never so much dowry and gift." "If I make my hands never so clean." "Charm he never so wisely." The word "ever''' would be more suitable to the sense.—Ever is sometimes improperly used for never: as, "I seldom or ever see him now." It should be, "I seldom or never;" the speaker intending to say, "that rarely, or rather at no time, does he see him now;" not" rarely," or, "at any lime."
2. In imitation of the French idiom, the adverb of place where, is often used instead of the pronoun relative and a preposition. "They framed a protestation, where they repeated all their former claims:" i. e. " in which they repeated." "The king was still determined to run forwards, in the same course where he was already, by his precipitate career, too fatally advanced ;" i. e. "in which he was." But it would be better to avoid this mode of expression.
The adverbs hence, thence, and whence, imply a preposition; for they signify, "from this place, from that place, from what place." It seems, therefore, strictly speaking, to be improper to join a preposition with them, because it is superfluous: as, "This is the leviathan, from whence the wits of our age are said to borrow their weapons;" "an ancient author prophesies from hence." But the origin of these words is little attended to, and the preposition from is so often used in construction with them, that the omission of it in many cases, would seem stiff, and be disagreeable.
The adverbs here, there, where, are often improperly applied to verbs signifying motion, instead of the adverbs hither, thither, whither: as, "He came here hastily;" "They rode there with speed." They should be, "He came hither." "They rode thither," &c.
3. We have some examples of adverbs being used for substantives: " In 1687, he erected it into a community of regulars, since when, it has begun to increase in those countries as a religious order;" i. e. "since which time." "A little while and I shall not see you;" i. e. "a short time." "It is worth their while ;" i. e. "it deserves their time and pains." But this mode of expression rather suits familiar than grave style. The same may be said of the phrase, "To do a thing any-how;" i. e. " in any manner;" or, " somehow;" i. e. "in some manner." "Somehow, worthy as these people are, they are under the influence of prejudice."
Such expressions as the following, though not destitute of authority, are very inelegant, and do not suit the idiom of our language; " The then ministry," for, "the ministry of that time;" " The above discourse," for "the preceding discourse."
Two negatives, in English, destroy one another, or are equivalent to an affirmative: as, "Nor did they not perceive him;" that is, "they did perceive him." "His language, though inelegant, is not ungrammaticali" that is, "it is grammatical.''
See Vol. ii. Part 3. Exercises. Chap. x. Rule 16. It is better to express an affirmation, by a regular affirms