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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1847, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court for the Northern District of New York
WORDS, PHRASES, AND SENTENCES
ACCORDING TO THEIR OFFICES, AND THEIR RELATION TO EACH OTHER.
COMPLETE SYSTEM OF DIAGRAMS.
Speech is the body of thought."
BY S. W. CLARK, A. M.,
Principal of East Bloomfield Academy.
NEW YORK :
MAKVAND COLLEGE LIBRARY
MAR 12 1931
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1847, by
S. W. CLARK, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court for the North
ern District of New York.
Stereotyped by C. Davison & Co., 33 Gold St.
THE GRAMMAR of a Language, Quinctilian has justly remarked, is like the foundation of a building; the most important part, although out of sight, and not always properly valued by those most interested in its condition.
In the opinion of many modern educators there is a tendency, on the part of all, to neglect this important branch of English Education—not so much from a conviction that the science is not important, as that there is a radical defect in the common method of presenting it to the attention of the scholar. This was the sentiment of the Author when, some ten years since, he was called to the supervision of a Literary Institution in which was established a department for the education of Teachers. Accordingly a recourse was had to oral instruction, and for the convenience of teachers a manuscript grammar was prepared, which embodied the principles of the science and the Author's mode of presenting it. These principles and this method have been properly tested by numerous and advanced classes during the seven years last past. The manuscript has in the mean time from continued additions unexpectedly grown to a book. It has received the favorable notice of teachers, and its publication has been, by teachers, repeatedly solicited. To these solicitations the Author is constrained to yield, and in the hope and belief that the work will “add to the stock of human knowledge," or at least tend to that result, by giving an increased interest to the study of the English Language, it is with diffidence submitted to the public.
In revising the work for publication, an effort has been made to render it simple in style, comprehensive in matter, adapted to the capacities of the younger pupil, and to the wants of the more advanced scholar. It is confidently believed that the Method of teaching Grammar herein suggested is the true method. The method adopted by most text-books may be well suited to the wants of foreigners in first learning our language. They need first, to learn our Alphabet—the powers and sounds, and the proper combinations of letters—the definition of words and their classifi
cation according to definitions. But the American youth is presumed to know all this, and be able to catch the thought conveyed by an English sentence—in fine, to be able to use practically the language before he attempts to study it as a science. Instead, therefore, of beginning with the Alphabet, and wasting his energies on technical terms and ambiguous words, he should be required to deal with thought as conveyed by sentences. Accordingly this introduction to the Science of Language begins with a Sentence, properly constructed, and investigates its structure by developing the offices of the words which compose it; making the office rather than the form of a word determine the class to which it belongs.
As an important auxiliary in the analysis of Sentences a system of Diagrams has been invented and introduced in the work. It is not claimed for the Diagrams that they constitute any essential part of the Science of Language—nor do Geometrical Diagrams constitute such a part of the Science of Geometry; Maps, of Geography; or figures, of Arithmetic. But it will not be denied that these are of great service in the study of those branches. Experience has established their importance.
Let then the use of Diagrams, reduced as they are here to a complete system, be adopted in the analyses of Sentences, and it is believed that teachers will confess that their utility is as obvious in the science of Language, as it is in the science of Magnitude; and for precisely the same reason, that an abstract truth is made tangible, the eye is permitted to assist the mind, the memory is relieved that the judgment may have a full charter of all the mental powers.
Conscious that novelty as such should not bear sway in the investigations of Science, the Author has been careful neither to depart from the ordinary method of presenting the Science, for the sake of novelty; nor has he from dread of novelty rejected manifest improvements. The old Nomenclature is retained, not because a better could not be proposed, but because the advantages to be gained would not compensate for the confusion necessarily consequent to such a change. But the terms purely technical have been introduced as a natural inference from facts previously deduced. Principles and Definitions are preceded by such Remarks as have fully established their propriety. The inductive method of arriving at truth has been followed throughout--with that it stands or falls. East BLOOMFIELD ACADEMY,