Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

manner.

a

as, deer, sheep, swine, trout, salmon, congeries, series, species, means, odds, bellows; ethics, mathematics, methaphysics, pneumatics, optics, and other similiar names of sciences.

There are also several nouns of number, which do not commonly vary their forms in the plural; as, “Six dozen;" “ Three score and ten.”

The words horse, foot, and infantry, denoting bodies of soldiers, are singular in form, but plural in signification. Cavalry is often used in the same

The words cannon, sail, and head, are also frequently employed in a plural sense.

Examples : -"Nelson now proceeded to his station with eight sail of frigates under his command."-Southey. “A body of a thousand horse was sent forward to reconnoitre the city.”Ro-. bertson. He ordered two cannon to be fired.” - Irving. The following words, though sometimes used as singular nouns, are more properly plural :-alms, amends, pains, riches, wages.

The following are used only in the plural :-
Annals

Drawers fan article of Archives

dress] Ashes

Dregs Assets

Embers Billiards

Entrails Bitters

Goods Bowels

Hatches Breeches

Hose (stockings) Clothes

Hysterics Calends

Ides

Literati

Pleiads Lees

Snuffers Letters [literature] Scissors Lungs

Shears Minutiae

Shamblers Manners

Tidings Morals

Tongs Nippers

Thanks Nones

Vespers Orgies

Vitals Pincers

Victuals Nouns, denoting objects, which do not admit of plurality, are used only in the singular; as, gold, silver, wheat, wine, flour, industry, pride, wisdom.

When, however, different kinds or varieties are spoken of, words of this class 'sometimes take the plural form; as, “ The waters of Germany;"_“The wines of France." The different species or classes are here signified, and not a number of individuals of the same class.

The word news is now regarded as singular, though it was formerly used in both numbers. Shakspeare has it most frequently in the plural.

Proper names are sometimes pluralised like other nouns; as, The two Scipios, the Howards, the Johnsons; but these plural names are not used to designate individuals, and may with more propriety be classed with common nouns.

In forming the plural of a proper name and a title, taken as one complex noun, the plural termination is most frequently annexed to the title only:

[ocr errors]

Examples :-“The Misses Vanhomrigh."-Edinburgh Journal. Messrs. Percy."-Southey.

In forming the plural of proper names, to which titles are prefixed, usage is still unsettled. While a decided majority of our popular writers pluralise the title and not the name, as the “ Misses Morgan,” there is also a large class of writers equally reputable, who pluralise the name and not the title ; as, " The Miss Morgans." Examples :-"!

:-" The Miss Thomsons."-Fuller. “The two Miss Flamboroughs."--Goldsmith.

Beside the two forms already exhibited, there is still another, in which the plural termination is annexed to both the name and the title ; as, “The Misses Morgans." This form, though not very common, is not entirely destitute of authority. Examples : -"The Messrs. Wilsons"-Jones.

.. “ The two Misses Beauvoirs." --Blackwood. The proper names of nations, societies, groups

of islands, and chains of mountains, are generally plural; as, The French, The Moravians, The Azores, The Alps, The Andes.

ON THE VERB.

a

A Verb* is a word, which expresses an assertion or affirmation; as, I I teach ; I am taught.

Verbs are divided into regular and irregular.

am ;

* The term verb is derived from the Latin verbum, which signifies a word. This part of speech is so called, because the verb is the principal word in the sentence.

A regular verb is one, which forms its past tense and perfect participle by adding d or ed to the present; as, present, love; past, loved; perfect participle, loved ; call, called, called.

Regular verbs terminating in silent e form their past tense and perfect participle by the addition of d only, and those ending in any other letter, by the addition of ed.

The verbs hear, pay, say and lay, which do not end in e, and which add d only for the past tense and perfect participle, are classed with irregular verbs.

An irregular verb is one, which does not form its past tense and perfect participle by adding d or ed to the present; as, present, see; past, saw; perfect participle, seen ; go, went, gone.

ON THE PARTICIPLE.

The participle is a mode of the verb, partaking of the properties of the verb and the adjective; as, seeing, seen, having seen, having been seen.

Participles may be classed under two general divisions: imperfect* and perfect.

"The distinguishing characteristic of this participle is, that it denotes an unfinished and progressive state of the being, action, or passion; it is therefore properly denominated the IMPERFECT participle.”—Brown.

"All that is peculiar to the participles is, that the one signifies a perfect and the other an imperfect action.”Pickbourn..

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.”—Murray.

An imperfect participle denotes the continuance of an action or state ; as, calling, seeing, being seen.

Imperfect participles relate to present, past, or future time, according as they are connected with verbs in the present, past, or future tense.

A perfect participle denotes the completion of an action or state; as, called, seen, having seen.

Participles are also divided into simple and compound.

A simple participle is a participle that consists of only one word ; as, doing, done.

A compound participle is a participle that is composed of two or more words; as, being seen, having scen, having been seen. Being seen is a compound imperfect participle; having seen and having been seen are compound perfect participles.

Participles, like other modifications of the verb, have a transitive, an intransitive, and a passive use. Thus, seeing and having seen are transitive; being and walking, intransitive; seen and having been seen, passive.

Participles often lose their verbal character, and become adjectives; as, " A moving spectacle ;" “A revised edition.” They are then called participial adjectives.

Participles are also used to perform the office of nouns; as, “ They could not avoid submitting to

, this influence.When used in this manner, they are called participial nouns.

a

66

« ZurückWeiter »