Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB

OBS. 5.—The consonants C and Q have no sounds peculiar to them. selves. Q has always the power of k, and is constantly followed by u and some vowel or two more in the same syllable; as in quake, quest, quit, quoit. C is hard, like k, before a, 0, and u; and soft, like s, before e, i, and y: thus the syllables ca, ce, ci, co, cu, cy, are pronounced ka, se, si, ko, ku, sy. S before c preserves the former sound, but coalesces with the latter; hence the syllables, sca, sce, sci, sco, scu, scy, are sounded ska, se, si, sko, sku, sy. Ce and ci have sometimes the sound of sh; as in ocean, social. Ch commonly represents the sound of tsh; as in church.

OBS. 6.-G, as well as C, has different sounds before different vowels. G is always hard, or guttural, before a, 0, and u; and generally soft, like j, before e, i, or y: thus the syllables, ga, ge, gi, go, gu, gy, are pronounced ga, je, ji, go, gu, jy.

Forms of the Letters. In the English language, the Roman characters are generally employed; sometimes, the Italic; and occasionally, the Old English. In writing, we use the Script.

The letters have severally two forms, by which they are distinguished as capitals and small letters.

Small letters constitute the body of every work, and capitals are used for the sake of eminence and distinction.

Rules for the use of Capitals.

RULE I.-TITLES OF BOOKS. The titles of books, and the heads of their principal divisions, should be printed in capitals. When books are merely mentioned, the chief words in their titles begin with capitals, and the other letters are small; as, “Pope's Essay on Man.”

RULE II.--FIRST WORDS. The first word of every distinct sentence, or of any clause separately numbered or paragraphed, should begin with a capital.

RULE III.-NAMES OF DEITY. All names of the Deity should begin with capitals ; as, God, Jehova), the Almighty, the Supreme Being.

RULE IV.-PROPER NAMES. Tiiles of office or honor, and proper names of every description, should begin with capitals; as, Chief Justice Hale, William, London, the Park, the Albion, the Spectator, the Thames.

RULE V.-OBJECT PERSONIFIED. The name of an object personified, when it conveys an idea strictly individual, should begin with a capital; as,

"Come, gentle Spring, ethereal mildness, come.

66

RULE VI.--WORDS DERIVED. Words derived from proper names of persons or places should begin with capitals; as, Newtonian, Grecian, Roman.

RULE VII.-I AND O. The words I and O should always be capitals; as, “Out of the depths have I cried unto thee O Lord."

RULE VIII.-In POETRY. Every line in poetry, except what is regarded as making but one verse with the line preceding, should begin with a capital; as,

" Our sons their fathers' failing language see,

And such as Chaucer is, shall Dryden be."-Pope.

RULE IX.--EXAMPLES, ETC. A full example, a distinct speech, or a direct quotation, should begin with a capital; as,

" Remember this maxim: “Know thyself.”” gil says, 'Labor conquers all things.'

[ocr errors]

66 Vir

RULE X.--CHIEF WORDS. Other words of particular importance, and such as denote the principal subjects of discourse, may be distinguished by capitals. Proper names frequently have capitals throughout.

11.-SYLLABLES. A syllable is one or more letters pronounced in one sound, and is either a word or a part of a word; as, a, an, ant.

In every word there are as many syllables as there are distinct sounds; as, gram-ma-ri-an.

A word of one syllable is called a monosyllable; a word of two syllables, a dissyllable; a word of three syllables, a trisyllable ; and a word of four or more syllables, a polysyllable.

Diphthongs and Triphthongs. A diphthong is two vowels joined in one syllable; as, ea in beat, ou in sound.

A proper diphthong is a diphthong in which both the vowels are sounded; as, oi in voice.

An improper diphthong is a diphthong in which only one of the vowels is sounded; as, oa in loaf.

A triphthong is three vowels joined in one syllable; as, eau in beau, iew in view.

A proper triphthong is a triphthong in which all the vowels are sounded; as, uoy in buoy.

An improper triphthong is a triphthong in which only one or two of the vowels are sounded; as, eau in beauty, iou in anxious.

Syllabication.

In dividing words into syllables, we are to be directed chiefly by the ear ; it may however be proper to observe, As far as practicable, the following rules :

RULE I.-CONSONANTS. Consonants should generally be joined to the vowels or diphthongs which they modify in utterance; as, ap-os-tol-i-cal.

RULE II.-VOWELS. Two vowels, coming together, if they make not a diphthong, must be parted in dividing the syllables; as, a-e-ri-al.

RULE III.-TERMINATIONS. Derivative and grammatical terminations should generally be separated from the radical words to which they have been added ; as, harm-less, great-ly, con-nect-ed.

RULE IV.-PREFIXES. Prefixes in general form separate syllables; as, mis-place, out-ride, uplift : but if their own primitive meaning be disregarded, the case may be otherwise ; thus re-create and rec-reate are words of different import.

RULE V.-COMPOUNDS. Compounds, when divided, should be divided into the simple words which compose them; as, no-where.

RULE VI.-FULL LINES. At the end of a line, a word may be divided, if necessary; but a syllable must never be broken.

III.-WORDS.

A word is one or more syllables spoken or written as the sign of some idea, or of some manner of thought.

Species and Figure of Words. Words are distinguished as primitive or derivative, and as simple or compound. The former division is called their species; the latter, their figure.

A primitive word is one that is not formed from any simpler word in the language; as, harm, great, connect.

A derivative word is one that is formed from some simpler word in the language ; as, harmless, greatly, connected, disconnect, unconnected.

A simple word is one that is not compounded, not composed of other words; as, watch, man, never, the, less.

A compound word is one that is composed of two or more simple words; as, watchman, nevertheless.

Permanent compounds are consolidated; as, bookstore, housekeeper: others, which may be called temporary compounds, are formed by the hyphen; as, glass-house, schoolmaster.

Rules for the Figure of Words. I.-Words regularly or analogically united, and commonly known as forming a compound, should never be needlessly broken apart.

II.—When the simple words would only form a regular phrase, of the same meaning, the compounding of any of them ought to be avoided.

III.—Words otherwise liable to be misunderstood, must be joined together or written separately, as the sense and construction may happen to require.

IV.–When two or more compounds are connected in one sentence, none of them should be split to make an ellipsis of half a word.

V.-When the parts of a compound do not fully coalesce; as, to-day, tonight, to-morrow; or when each retains its original accent, so that the compound has more than one, or one that is movable ; as, first-born, hanger-on, laughter-loving, the hyphen should be inserted between them.

VI. —When a compound has but one accented syllable in pronunciation, as watchword, statesman, gentleman, and the parts are such as admit of a complete coalescence, no hyphen should be inserted between them.

IV.-SPELLING. Spelling is the art of expressing words by their proper letters.

OBS.—This important art is to be acquired rather by means of the spelling-book or dictionary, and by observation in reading, than by the study of written rules. The orthography of our language is attended with much uncertainty and perplexity: many words are variously spelled by the best scholars, and many others are not usually written according to the analogy of similar words. But to be ignorant of the orthography of such words as are uniformly spelled and frequently used, is justly considered disgraceful. The following rules may prevent some embarrassment, and thus be of service to those who wish to be accurate.

Rules for Spelling.

RULE I.-FINAL F, L, OR S. Monosyllables ending in f, l, or s, preceded by a single vowel, double the final consonant; as, staff, mill, pass : except three in f-clef, if, of; three in 1bul, sal, sol ; and eleven in 8-as, gas, has, was, yes, is, his, this, us, thus, pus.

RULE II.- OTHER FINALS. Words ending in any other consonant than f, l, or 8, do not double the final letter: except abb, ebb, add, odd, egg, inn, err, burr, purr, yarr, butt, buzz, fuzz, and some proper names.

[ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »