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definition propounded as if the English verb but they are simplicity itself when compared denoted action either terminated or not ter- with the verb be; in which there is more of minated, is not free from objections.
wanton anomaly than could well be found within We have no wish to discard the affix ed; but the same compass, if we were to search all the it is evidently much less necessary or useful languages of the world. The remark of Mr. than grammatists would readily admit; for many Turner applies equally to the English substanverbs are destitute of it, such as shut, set, thrust, tive verb : The Anglo Saxon substantive verb spread, &c., without any inconvenience or loss is compounded of several verbs. We can trace of significancy; and when ungrammatic people no fewer than five in its different inflections.' omit the affix, or employ what is called the Words much in use are most liable to be corpresent instead of the imperfect, their meaning rupted and rendered irregular. Our ancestors is perfectly intelligible. The truth is, we are adopted many irregularities, of what is called very apt to fancy that useless things are necessary, the substantive verb, from their literary neighmerely because we have been used to them; bours : but confusion is worse confounded by and we have not the smallest doubt that, if the their unskilful agency. affix in question had never been adopted, our Am is plainly slui, Gr.; sum, Lat.: is, a corlanguage would have been as significant without, ruption of esti, est; was is a corruption of esse ; as it now is with, this termination. But if it were is fuere, furent, Fr.; furono, It.; art and were regularly affixed, there would be no ob- are seem corrupted from I weorth, to be, be jection to its existence: the great grammatic evils made : thus far we have a jumble of anomaly ; we have to complain of, are those irregularities but in what remains we have an entirely different which so much abound; and which serve only word, and one which might be very easily rento render the verbal appparatus difficult and dered a competent substantive verb, at once unwieldy.
simple and regular. If we discard all useless parts and irregu Be, I beo and I bio, i.e. fio, i.e. bioo. larities, what are called the auxiliary verbs will The illiterate, particularly the peasantry, for appear in the following manner :
they always adhere more closely to analogy than I do, thou do, he, she, or it do. We do, you their grammatic superiors, have this as the sole do, they do. I doed, thou doed, he, &c., doed. substantive verb in the following manner : We doed, you doed, they doed.
To be, being, beed. To do, doing, doed,
I be, thou be, he, &c., be; we be, you be, I have, thou have, he, &c., have. We have, they be : I beed, thou beed, he, &c., beed; we you have, they have. I haved, thou haved, he, beed, you beed, they beed. &c., baved. We haved, you haved, they haved.
Thus, by merely removing those nuisances, est, To have, having, haved.
eth, es, or s; and by making the regular affix ed In consequence of haved being contracted into had, we have such extraordinary combina- simplicity and regularity, that even a child could
supersede the obsolete affix en; we have such tions as the following: I have had, I had had ; not err in employing this familiar, household and not only the former, but the latter of these
word. expressions is set forth in proper grammatic what are called the future tense, and the sub
Fortunately be remains unchanged in order, as a necessary and regular tense. Let and must require no notice in this place. thou shalt be, he shall be, &c. If I be, if thou
junctive and potential moods; as, I shall be, Can and may merely express power: I can go, be, &c. I may be, he may be, &c. is equivalent to, I am able to go--I have power,
Having reviewed the grammatic auxiliaries, permission, liberty, &c., to go. I may resign, is equivalent to, I have power to resign; and in which consist of very irregular forces: and, for
we may now approach the main body of verbs, spite of idle doctrines concerning potentials, the the conceit of the allusion, we will make train shorter is merely an abridged form of the longer expression.
our fugleman. May, when the affix ed is assumed, is corrupted into might instead of mayed.
To train, training, trained. Will, Vol-o, is,
I train, thou train, he train, we train, &c. : I I will, thou will, he, &c., will. We will, you trained, thou trained, he trained, &c. will, they will. I willed, corrupted into would, This is such simple manæuvring that a child thou willed, he, &c., willed.
might go through the whole exercise; yet it is To will, willing, willed.
all that is either necessary or useful : and to Shall,
change train from an active to what is called a I shall, thou shall, he, &c., shall; we shall, passive state, all that is necessary is, be put be&c. : I shalled, corrupted into should, &c. fore it, as accompanied with the affix ed.
Shall seems most entitled to the designation Thus, auxiliary verb, for it does not appear to bave I be loved, thou be loved, &c. much distinct significancy of its own; but it is, I beed loved, &c. we believe, merely a diversity of will; and con To be loved, being loved : having been loved. sidering the perplexity caused by it, not only to We have no doubt that if ed had never been Scotchmen and foreigners, but even to the English adopted as a verbal affix, the business could have themselves, who often blunder in applying shall been well accomplished without it; but, having and will, its existence is no grammatic cause of been adopted, it may remain ; only irregularities congratulation.
deserve to be banished. The preceding verbs ve some irregularities; When the auxiliaries are united with the re
gular verbs, the junction is effected in the follow- Awake awaked ing manner:
+ awoke #awaken
Bend bended + bent
Bereave bereaved + bereft
Catch catched t caught
cleaved + clave I shall have trained, thou shall have trained,
clothed # clad he shall or will have trained.
Crow crowed + crew But, if the moods be abandoned, the tenses Dare dared + durst yet remain.
Deal dealed + dealt The truth is, as before intimated, if any notion Dig digged
+ dug as to time ever exist in connexion with any verb, Dwell dwelled + dwelt it is wholly accessory or associated, and not sig- Freeze freezed + froze + frozen nified by the verb itself. In general what is called Gild gilded t gilt the present tense simply indicates action, being, Grave
+graven relation, &c.: what are called the past tenses, Gird girded + girt generally indicate existence, action, relation, &c., Hew hewed
thewn as terminated; which, of course, is closely asso- Knit knitted t knit ciated in the mind with the notion of the past. Load loaded + laden What is called future tense properly indicates Mow mowed + mown volition. Thus, if I say, I will publish the Saw
sawed + sawn present work in the month of May: the sentence Shape shaped # shapen is equivalent to, I intend to publish in the month Shave shaved t shaven of May; or, I am resolved to publish in the Shear sheared t shorn month of May. Here the notion of future is Shine shined + shone manifestly an associated, not the primary notion. Show showed t shown It is true that the word is applied to many ob- Shrink shrinked + shrunk jects in which volition does not exist ; as in the Slay slayed t slew + slain following expressions : The moon will rise at Sow sowed
+ sown eight to-night; the sun will rise at six to mor- Spill spilled
t spilt row morning. These are instances of a very Strive strived t strove + striven numerous class of expressions which are meta- Strow
strowed t strown phoric or allusive, rather than strictly and lite- † Strew + strewed rally proper, though, from having been long used, Swell swelled + swollen they appear quite literal.
Thrive thrived + throve + thriven If the grammatic doctrine of tenses were admit- Wax waxed + waxen ted, what is gained by it? Does it impart any Work worked + wrought instruction? Does it render Tyro better ac- Wring wringed + wrung quainted with language or more master of composition ? If it does not answer such a purpose,
There can be no unwillingness, even in the it is evidently worse than useless.
most dutiful disciples of custom, to discard all the
above forms with the dagger prefixed; for most Irregular verbs, like all anomalies, are exceedingly troublesome, especially to learners.
of them have an olden uncouthness, except to the Most of them, evidently, originated in blunder
lovers of antique obsoleteness. ing carelessness; or in that aversion to polysyl
Secondly, verbs that might be restored to analables which operated so powerfully on our Saxon
logy, or rendered regular without offering much ancestors. Had grammar-makers endeavoured
violence to established usage : as, to remove such irregularities, they would have Beseech beseeched + besought done some good ; but, instead of such useful ser- Bleed bleeded #bled vice, their first labor was to consecrate and con- Blood blooded is still better firm all the perversions which they found actually Blow blowed + blew tblown existing ; and thus they prevented our language Choose choosed f chose + chosen from righting itself, as it would have done, to Cleave cleaved + cleft + clove #cloven a considerable degree, if it had been left wholly to split. to analogy, free from the fetters of arbitrary rules Cling clinged clung established on anomalous precedents ; for there Creep creeped crept is a constant effort on the part of children and Draw drawed drew drawn foreigners, and all the ungrammatic, to restore Drive drived + drove i driven uniformity; which effort is so well backed by Drink drinked #drank + drunk reason, that it would doubtless prevail but for Feel feeled + felt the despotic authority of written grammar. Flee fleed fled
With the view of inducing influential writers Fly f lyed flew flown and speakers to set the example of banishing One of these duplicates had better be discarded irregularities from the verbs, we will present Fling Alinged' ffung them in the following distributions :
Forsake forsaked forsook + forsaken First, Verbs that have both a regular and irre- Grow growed † grew grown gular form.
Hang hanged thung
tleft + lost
thid theld fled
Hear heared theard
Fight fighted #fought Keep keeped #kept
Find finded #found Know knowed knew tiknown
#gave tgiven Lay layed
goed twent #gone Lie lied tlay #lain
thad Leave leaved
thidden Lose losed
+holden payed tpaid
Lead leaded Ring ringed trang trung
Make maked + made Rise rised #rose trisen
Meet meeted #met Say sayed
Rend rended trent See seed + saw , #seen
trid Shake shaked tshook +shaken
Run runned fran
trun Shoe shoed
Seek seeked + sought Sing singed + sang + sung
Send sended tsent Sink sinked
tshot Sleep sleeped + slept
Sit sitted tsat
+ sitten Slide slided
tstood Sling slinged #slung
#taken Slink slinked
treaded #trod | troddev Smite smited #smote fsmitten
Wind winded twound Speak speaked #spoke + spoken
Write writed + wrote twritten Speed speeded #sped Spend spended + spent
The following have no change of termination ; Spin spinned + span + spun
yet, as already noticed, they answer every purSpit + spat + spitten
pose of speech as well as those that have the Spring springed + sprang + sprung
affix ed: having a great affection for simplicity Steal stealed + stole #stolen
we are rather partial to such unchanged verbs; Stick sticked + stuck
but as ed has been adopted, and has become the Sting stinged + stung
general rule, perhaps it ought to be uniformly Stink stinked + stank +stunk
affixed: thus, beat, beated; burst, bursted; cast, Stride strided + strode + strid #stridden casted; cost, costed ; cut, cutted; eat, eated, Strike striked struck + stricken
teaten; hit, hitted ; let, letted; put, putted; String stringed †strung
read, readed; rid, ridded; set, setted; shed, Swear sweared tsware tswore tsworn sheded; shred, shreded; shut, shutted; split, Swimi swimmed #swam tswum
splitted ; spread, spreaded; sweat, sweated; Swing swinged swung
thrust, thrusted. Teach teached + taught
Observe, 1. That most of the irregular verbs Tear teared + tore ttorn
have descended from Saxon times; when there Tell telled + told
was a different manner of forming what is called Think thinked #thought
the imperfect besides affixing ed. Throw throwed † threw #thrown
2. The termination en, which appears so often Weave weaved twove twoven
in what is called the perfect passive participle, Weep weeped twept
is a relic of a regular affix, now obsolete; and, Win winned twon
for the same reason that it has been wholly dis
continued in what is called the infinitive mood Most of these are already familiar to us, (for we never say or write to loven, &c.), it ought as being constantly heard among the ungram- to be entirely disused, except as an immoveable matic members of society, who are the great affix ; as, flaren, golden, fiatten, blacken, &c. majority of the whole population; and, when our mouths and ears have somewhat practised on
Many of the irregularities, exhibited above, are these analogies, they will not shy much at such with the regular affix : as, bereft contraction of
merely contractions or corruptions of the verbs strange regularities as the following :
bereaved; clad of clothed; dealt of dealed; Abide abided tabode
dwelt of dwelled; gilt of gilded ; spilt of spilled; Be beed
cleft of cleaved ; crept of creeped; felt of + Am + was
feeled; fed of fleed; kept of keeped ; left of Bear beared + bare tbore tborne tborn leaved; shod of shoed; slept of sleeped; wept Begin beginned + began t begun
of weeped ; &c. Bid bidded #bade' i bad + bidden t bid There is still a great tendency to such conBind binded #bound
tractions as, smelt for smelled ; learnt for learned, Bite bited + bit
&c.; but the grammarians have very properly Break breaked † broke + broken
remonstrated against such instances; and, for the Breed breeded + bred
same reason, the author remonstrates against all Bring bringed brought
irregularities, whether more or less modern. InBuy buyed + bought
stead of indulging foolish mirth or contemptu, Come comed + came
ous ridicule, when children, foreigners, and Do doed
illiterate natives follow the guidance of analogy Fall falled † fallen
and say, growed, knowed, blowed, seed, &c.; men Feed feeded
ought to be ashamed of their own want of re
+ did † fell + fed
flection-their appreciation of worthless dis- there is certainly a great obstacle; for many tinctions—their blind reverence for anomalies, words compounded of in have been received made up of blunders and corruptions—and their into our language; as infirm, infallible, &c. slavish submission to the tyranny of an arbitrary In addition to all the other anomalies, there kind of grammar, which attempts to prove its le are many useless diversities of the same word, gitimacy by giving reasons for what reason never which have been adopted first directly from the dictated.
Greek, then from Latin, Italian, French, &c. PART III.
&c. : thus many forms of the same verb, noun,
&c., have been imported from other languages ; PREFIXES AND AFFIXES.
and then these have been yet more diversified Prefixes are those words which are joined on
by the caprices of spelling and pronunciation. the left or at the beginning of other words : as,
Ana or an, which is the same in German, and unknown, revisit, &c. : affixes or postfixes are
with us changed into on. This is a word of frethose words which are joined on the right or at quent occurrence; but it is not much used as a the end of other words: as, heedless, mindful, prefix: &e. It is evidently of some importance that
An is changed into en, changed into in; which these should be explained; especially such of we have both as a prefix and a preposition. Of them as have no separate existence in the this, also, we have a duplicate, which we borEnglish language. Such words are generally rowed from the French; as, inquire, enquire ; particles ; i. e. small parts of compound words: indite, end ite; &c. It would certainly be adand some of them are fragments of sentences.
visable to discard the French and adhere uniPost, after, (for example), is evidently what is formly to the Latin form of spelling; as, inchant, called p. p; of pono, (hence pone, behind), and fenchant; indict, tendict; ingrave, tengrave, must have been originally connected with other
&c. words to express the meaning now indicated by
There can hardly be any reasonable doubt that it alone, in some such manner as the following: ana, an, en (with us on, in), and an, a (in, with positum a tergo, &c.
us un and in negative), are but one and the same It is only on this supposition, that the actual word, or fragment of a word; and that the difmeaning of many words can be accounted for. ference of meaning is owing to ellipsis, i. e. dif
ference of composition. Sect. I.-OF PREFIXES.
Anti, in front of, directed to, opposed to: This term is more definite than preposition; it has only the last meaning when a prefix with which last term was originally employed for the us: as, antireformer, i. e. one who is opposed to eame purpose as we now employ the former; and reform; antiabolitionist, one who is opposed to in this view there are both meaning and sense; in the abolition of negro-slavery. Ante (i. e. anti) any other view there is neither: hence, as al- is equivalent to, in the front, ahead of, before : ready intimated, the unmeaning definition of antediluvian, i. e. before the diluvium, corrupted preposition, as commonly given by the gramma- into deluge; antemeridian, i. e. before the sun tists.
be at the meridian-before noon. From ante is The prefixes may be presented in the follow- avante (It.), (i. e. a-ante) contracted into run. ing classes :
Apo, ab, contracted into a, and Ger. I aff, 1. Greek.- An (both an and un in Gothic), 1 af, off, of. Both off and of are frequently used; in, and both in and un with us : as, involunta- but only the former is employed as an affix, and ry, unwilling; i. e. not voluntary, not willing: that but seldom. so that the prefix an, in, un, has precisely the Ek, er, ex, contracted into e; corrupted into meaning of ne, non (i. e. ne, ne), not: it is a fuss, I ust, aus, Ger., out. Out is not much negative prefix.
used as a prefix: ex is much employed as a preThe Greek grammarians have made the same fix in Greek and Latin, and aus in Ger. The ge mistake about the above prefix as the English neral meaning is the same in all the different grammarians, concerning what they call the in languages ; i. e. it is compounded of that of the definite article. Both say that a becomes an prefix, and of that of the other word. Erles and before a word beginning with a vowel; whereas, outlaw both mean out of, or without law; only an becomes a before a word beginning with a the first is a person that is not subject to law; consonant. Observe again, that one of our du the second is a person that has not the protection plicates of this prefix, i. e. un, is derived directly of law. from Greek, through our Gothic ancestors; the On er is formed extra, i, e. out of, beyond : other from the Latin. Hence we prefix un to extraordinary, beyond ordinary; extraparochial
, Saxon words (themselves corruptions of Greek not comprehended within any parish. and Latin); and in, the Latin corruption of an, Hemi, semi, i. e. half; as, hemisphere, i. e. a to Latin words: as, involuntary, unwilling. We half sphere; semicircle, a half circle, or the half perceive something of impropriety, or uncouth- of a circle. Hemi is a contraction of hemisa, a ness, 1. e. a departure from established usage, if contraction of he messe; i. e. the feminine arwe interchange them: inwilling, unvoluntary; ticle, and messe, media, medium, middle. but the latter being more vernacular, or idio Para, peri, per, &c., per. This, like so many matic, does better than the former.
other particles, or verbal fragments much in use, as a consistent advocate of simplicity and uni- is exceedingly vague. As a Greek prefix
, it formity, the author would have one of these du occurs in but few words adopted into the English plicates of the negative prefix discontinued; and language. As a Latin prefix: per means through, that which was adopted from the Latin, as being completely, much : as, perfect, completely done, less ichiomatic, should be turned off; but to this finished, complete; perform, to form completely;
to finish, &c. When not employed as a prefix, i. e. in bed, in sleep, on shore, on ground, &c. per is equivalent to by: as, per centum by the In all such expressions as, to go a begging, a hundred.
fishing, a hunting, &c., a is ad contracted; and Pro, pro, pre, corrupted into for, fore. Pra, the meaning is, to go to begging, to fishing, &c. pre, and fore, as prefixes, are exactly equivalent: Ad and its contraction a, and its diversified forms as, preordain, foreordain; predict, foretell, &c. at, to, have precisely the same meaning. Pro is generally equivalent to forward, i. e, fore The last consonant of the prefix is usually ward, or forth: as, produce, i. e. to lead for- changed into the first consonant of the word with ward, or bring forth; propel, drive forward, &c. which it is joined ; as, adnuncio, annuncio, to For is prefixed to very few words, and is equiva- announce; assulto, to assault, i. e. leap upon, lent to pro in some of its connexions and appli- to attack. cations.
The illiterate classes of the English, particuHuper, or hyper, super, supra, corrupted intolarly cockneys, are guilty of using a, i. e. ad, up, upper, uber, and oben Ger. I aber, ober, Heb. most unreasonably; as, I was a saying, he was a over, I bove, boven Dut., i. e. be over, whence hearing, he is a going. above. It is not meant that ober, Heb., I aber, Circum, in a circle, round, about. &c., are derived from huper, as super, &c.; but Circumnavigate, to navigate round, or sail they are all manifestly the same word with the round; circumambulate, to amble, or walk round, same meaning. Hypercritical, i. e. over critical ; &c. supernatural, above natural, or above the course Inter, i. e. in and ter an adjective affix, of nature; supervisor, overseer, &c. Super is within, between, among; interline, to write be contracted into sur by the French: surcharge, tween lines; interlope, to leap between, or surfeit, survey, &c.; i. e. overcharge, overdo, among; interregnum, interreign, the time beoverlook, or view all over, &c.
tween the reign of one king and that of another. Aber, in the names of towns, means over, like Intro, in or into: introduce (duco, lead), to sur, upon, &c.: as, Aberdeen, i. e. over or upon lead, or bring in, &c. the Don; Abergavenny, i. e. over the Gavenny; Intra, within. Aberistwyth, i. e. over the Istwyth, &c.
Internus, Internalis, internal. Inver, i. e. infra, is just the opposite of aber : Interior. as, Inverness, i. e. under the Ness; Inverury, Introeo, corrupted, through the Fr., into i. e. under the Ury, &c. Thus we have New- enter, whence entry, entrance, &c. castle-under-Line as well as Newcastle-upon Con, with, to: Concurro, concur, run together, Tyne, &c.
unite; confront, to place front to front; conHupo, or hypo, changed into sub, whence sub- fluent, flowing together; commingle, to mingle ter; all which are prefixes : we have few Greek together. words with the prefix hypo; but we have many Contra, corrupted into counter ; facing, oppoLatin words with sub, &c.: as, subscribe, i. e. site, against : contradict (dico, speak), to speak underwrite, or write under; sub-tenant, i. e. against, or deny; counteract, to act in opposiunder-tenant, &c.
tion to; countermand, to order the contrary of Dia, dis, de, through, from, out, apart. The what was ordered before, &c. primary use of both dis and de may be termed Contrarius, contrary; contrarietas, contraseparative: as, diffuse, to pour out, or asunder; riety. depart, to part from, leave, go off : in many Ob (epi), upon, to, before, for, &c. : obligo, words they rather add to the force than to the oblige f Ligo, nd), bind to; occur (curro), run meaning of words : demonstrate, to show forth to, meet, happen. (monstro, to show); despoil, to spoil, &c. In Trans, contracted into tra (It.), and corrupted many words they are simply negative: discredit, into through(and très, Fr.), thorough (durch, Ger.): not to credit, &c. In some words de has the sig- it answers to through, over, beyond : transgress, nification of down or downwards : as, descend, trespass, to pass over ; transatlantic, beyond the go down; degrade, make to descend to a Atlantic; translucid, shining through, clear. lower grade, step, or station ; despise, literally, Très is employed by the French as we employ look down upon.
very, exceedingly. Dis, de, like er, e, ab, se, are directly oppo, Últra (corrupted into outre, Fr.), heyond, site to ad, con, ob, in. The last may be termed above, high, &c.; ultra-royalist, one who has connectives: the first disconnectives. As nega- very high notions of royalty, a high tory. tives, dis, de, un, are exactly equivalent: dis Ulterior, further. cover, uncover (the first is now used only meta Sine, without, (i. e. sit ne, be not), contracted phorically); dethrone, unthrone; demoralise, to into se, is strictly a separative or disconnective; render immoral, &c.
segregate, to separate from the flock; seligo, Malus, mal, ill, bad, contracted into mes, me, selectum, select, to choose out of. This prefix Fr., mis: malecontent, mal-content, Fr.; malfor- has much the same use as de, dis, di, and un, in. mation; misuse, misadventure, &c. Mésuser, Re, again, back: re-enact, enact again; remésaventure, Fr., i. e. not well content, bad for- state, state again; rebound, bound back. mation, to use ill, a bad adventure: thus, mis In Dutch re is corrupted into her; as, hercalculate, misadvise, mistake, &c.
plant, replant; hermaak, remake. The following are Latin prefixes or preposi It is unnecessary to explain those words tions : ud, corrupted into adu, 1 du, now to, and sometimes employed as prefixes, which have a into at; and contracted into a in It. Fr. Sp. separate existence in the language: such as, and Eng.: as, abed, asleep, ashore, aground,&c.; with, down, &c. There is but one Anglo prefix Vol. X.