Page images

scribimus," (Epistolæ, 40,) is Seneca's phrase; and the editor adds the following note:-"notis post singula verba positis; neque enim alia adhuc interpunctio usurpata antiquis."

(14) See Appendix, No. 4.

(15) The earliest printers were oftentimes the authors, translators, or editors of the books they printed : each one cut his own types, made his own ink, set up the types, read his own proofs, and worked off the sheets.-The Guide to Trade: The Printer: Charles Knight.

(16) The subject of tropes, or the use of words in secondary meanings, being important in composition, the following extract from Blair's Lectures on Rhetoric and Belles Lettres, is given :

At the first rise of language, men would begin with giving names to the different objects which they discerned or thought of. This nomenclature would, at the beginning, be very narrow. According as men's ideas multiplied, and their acquaintance with objects increased, their stock of names and words would increase also. But to the infinite variety of objects and ideas, no language is adequate. No language is so copious, as to have a separate word for every separate idea. Men naturally sought to abridge this labour of multiplying words in infinitum; and in order to lay less burden on their memories, made one word, which they had already appropriated to a certain idea or object, stand also for some other idea or object, between which and the primary one, they found, or fancied, some relation. Thus the preposition, in, was originally invented to express the circumstance

of place: 'The man was killed in the wood.' In progress of time, words were wanted to express men's being con nected with certain conditions of fortune, or certain situations of mind, and some resemblance or analogy being fancied between these, and the place of bodies, the word, in, was employed to express men's being so circumstanced; as, one's being in health, or in sickness, in prosperity, or in adversity, in joy, or in grief, in doubt, or in danger, or in safety. Here we see this preposition, in, plainly assuming a tropical signification, or carried off from its original meaning, to signify something else which relates to, or resembles it.

66 Tropes of this kind abound in all languages; and are plainly owing to the want of proper words. The operations of the mind and affections, in particular, are, in most languages, described by words taken from sensible objects. The reason is plain. The names of sensible objects were, in all languages, the words most early introduced; and were, by degrees, extended to those mental objects of which men had more obscure conceptions, and to which they found it more difficult to assign distinct names. They borrowed, therefore, the name of some sensible idea, where their imagination found some affinity. Thus we speak of a piercing judgment, and a clear head; a soft or a hard heart; a rough or a smooth behaviour. We say, inflamed by anger, warmed by love, swelled with pride, melted into grief: and these are almost the only significant words which we have for such ideas.


"When we design to intimate the period at which a state enjoyed most reputation or glory, it were easy to employ the proper words for expressing this; but as this is readily connected, in our imagination, with the flour

ing to Mev. TE que, atque, and.-Port Royal Greek Grammar, book vi., c. xiii.

(25) With this quotation from Dr. Whateley no liberties have been taken; the punctuation has been exactly followed.

(26) Asyndeton: without a conjunction; want of a conjunction.

(27) Campbell's Philosophy of Rhetoric, book iii., c. iii., of complex periods; 11th edition. With this quotation no liberties have been taken; the punctuation, of the original is exactly followed.

(28) Kwλov; membrum ut pes, lacertus, crus; pars periodi: Hederici Lexicon.-Colon, a member of a sentence: Ainsworth's Dictionary.-Membra quædam, quæ Graci Kλα vocant: Cicero ad Marc. Brutum Orator.

(29) Colon iisdem [Rhetoribus] est sententia perfecta; sed relata ;-sive est pars periodi suo fulta verbo: Vossius Rhet. Instit. lib. iv., de periodo.

(30) Cicero considered that period to be the best, which consists of four members. Constat enim ille ambitus et plena comprehensio è quatuor ferè partibus, quæ membra dicimus, ut et aures impleat, et ne brevior sit, quàm satis sit, neque longior: Ad Marc. Brutum Orator.Quinctilian says, a period has at least two members; most commonly it has four; but frequently contains more. Habet periodus membra minimum duo: medius numerus videtur quatuor: sed recipit frequenter et plura.

Modus ei a Cicerone aut quatuor senariis versibus, aut ipsius spiritus modo terminatur. Præstare debet, ut sensum concludat; sit aperta, ut intelligi possit: non immodica, ut memoria contineri: Quinctiliani de Inst. Orat., lib. ix., c. iv. de compositione.-Vossius allows a period to consist of two, three, or four colons. Periodus πολυκωλος [composita] δίκωλος [bimembris], vel τρίκωλος [trimembris], vel Teтpáкwλos [quadrimembris.]—Rhet. Instit., lib. iv.

(31) Kouμa; segmen, fragmentum, incisum, pars periodi, nota, signum; Hederici Lexicon.-Pars minima et orationis fragmentum ; Schrevelii Lexicon.-A piece cut off or cut out, a slice, an incisum, a short division of a period; Donovan's Greek and English Lexicon.-A part of a member in a period marked thus (,); Ainsworth's Latin and English Dictionary; 4to.

(32) Cùm Græci кóμμатα, et kλa nominent, nos non rectè incisa, et membra dicamus.-Cicero: Ad. Marc. Brutum Orator.

(33) His [rhetoribus] commata est sententia imperfecta, sive pars periodi composita sine verbo.—Vossius, lib. iv., c. iii.

(34) It seems that some have regarded clauses either as colons or commas, according to their length: Vossius says, "Interim illud non ignorandum, sæpe et commata colorum, et cola commatum magnitudinem habere :”he adds, Demetrius and Hermogenes teach that the colon and comma differ only in length: that some think that a clause which contains not more than seven, others eight


to the first volume of the first edition of his Settlement Cases. Since the greater part of the text has been in the press, I have stumbled on the following notice: "The Thoughts upon Pointing have been much enlarged and improved; and published as an essay on punctuation, entitled 'De ratione et usu interpungendi.' Sold by Edward Brooke, Bell Yard; price 1s. 6d."

(39) Blair's Lectures on Philosophy and Belles Lettres : Lect. xvii.; Figures of Speech. The rest of what Blair says is so much to the purpose, that it ought to have formed a part of the text; the omission shall be supplied in this place:-"Nothing has a worse effect than the frequent and unseasonable use of them [notes of exclamation]. Raw juvenile writers imagine, that, by pouring them forth often, they render their compositions warm and animated. Whereas quite the contrary follows. They render it frigid to excess. When an author is always calling upon us to enter into transports which he has said nothing to inspire, we are both disgusted and enraged at him. He raises no sympathy, for he gives us no passion of his own, in which we can take part. He gives us words, and not passion; and, of course, can raise no passion, unless that of indignation. Hence I am inclined to think, he was not much mistaken, who said, that when, on looking into a book, he found the pages thick bespangled with the point which is called, 'Punctum admirationis,' he judged this to be a sufficient reason for his laying it aside. And indeed were it not for the help of this 'punctum admirationis,' with which many writers of the rapturous kind so much abound, one would be often at a loss to discover, whether or not it was exclamation which they aimed at."

« PreviousContinue »