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At present we shall postpone the whole synthetical part, (that is to say, logic and rhetoric,) and confine ourselves to the analytical; that is to say, universal grammar. In this we shall follow the order that we have above laid down: first dividing speech, as a whole, into its constituent parts; then resolving it, as a composite, into its matter and form: two methods of analysis very different in their kind, and which lead to a variety of very different speculations.

Should any one object, that, in the course of our inquiry, we sometimes descend to things which appear trivial and low, let him look

upon the effects to which those things contribute, then, from the dignity of the consequences, let him honour the principles.

The following story may not improperly be here inserted. “When the fame of Heraclitus was celebrated throughout Greece, there were certain persons that had a curiosity to see so great a man. They came, and, as it happened, found him warming himself in a kitchen. The meanness of the place occasioned them to stop; upon which the philosopher thus accosted them-Enter (says he) boldly, for here, too, there are gods.'"e

We shall only add, that as there is no part of nature too mean for the divine presence; so there is no kind of subject, having its foundation in nature, that is below the dignity of a philosophical inquiry.



Those things which are first to nature, are not first to man. Nature begins from causes, and thence descends to effects: human perceptions first open upon effects, and thence, by slow degrees, ascend to causes. Often had mankind seen the sun in eclipse, before they knew its cause to be the moon's interposition ; much oftener had they seen those unceasing revolutions of summer and winter, of day and night, before they knew the cause to be the earth's double motion. Even in matters of art and human crea

See Aristot. de Part. Animal. 1. i. c. 5. is, he views effects through causes in their 'This distinction of " first to man," and natural order. Man views the last as first, "first to nature," was greatly regarded in the and the first as last; that is, he views causes Peripatetic philosophy. See Aristot. Phys. through effects, in an inverse order. And Auscult. I. i. c. 1. Themistius's Comment hence the meaning of that passage in Arion the same, Poster. Analyt. I. i. c. 2. De stotle, "Notep ydp Tôv vukTeplow us Anima, L. ii. c. 2. It leads us, when pro- uata mpos od péyyos éxer to ueo ruépar, perly regarded, to a very important distinc- ούτω και της ημετέρας ψυχής και νούς προς tion between intelligence divine, and intelli- Tà tñ púbet pavepárata návrwv: “As gence human. God may be said to view arc the eyes of bats to the light of the day, the first, as first, and the last, as last ; that so is man's intelligence to those objects

tion, if we except a few artists and critical observers; the rest look no higher than to the practice and mere work, knowing nothing of those principles on which the whole depends.

Thus, in speech, for example: all men, even the lowest, can speak their mother-tongue; yet, how many of this multitude can neither write, nor even read! How many of those, who are thus far literate, know nothing of that grammar which respects the genius of their own language? How few, then, must be those who know grammar universal; that grammar which, without regarding the several idioms of particular languages, only respects those principles that are essential to them all ?

It is our present design to inquire about this grammar; in doing which we shall follow the order consonant to human perception, as being for that reason the more easy to be understood.

We shall begin, therefore, first from a period or sentence, that combination in speech which is obvious to all; and thence pass, if possible, to those its primary parts, which, however essential, are only obvious to a few.

With respect, therefore, to the different species of sentences, who is there so ignorant, as, if we address him in his mothertongue, not to know when it is we assert, and when we question; when it is we command, and when we pray or wish? For example, when we read in Shakspeare,

The man that bath no music in himself,
And is not moved with concord of sweet sounds,

Is fit for treasons ; or in Milton,

O friends, I hear the tread of nimble feet,

Hasting this way ; it is obvious that these are assertive sentences, one founded upon judgment, the other upon sensation. When the witch in Macbeth says to her companions,

When shall we three meet again,

In thunder, lightning, or in rain ? this it is evident is an interrogative sentence.


that are by nature the brightest and most contented to advance from the more imconspicuous of all things.” Metaph. 1. ii. c. l. perfect and complex, to the more simple and See also l. vii. c. 4. and Ethic. Nicom. I. i. perfect ; for the complex subjects are more c. 4. Ammonius, reasoning in the same way, familiar to us, and better known. Thus, says, very pertinently to the subject of this therefore, it is, that even a child knows treatise, 'Ayamntdv åvopwrivn quoel, ek how to put a sentence together, and say, TWY STEREOTépwy kal ovv étwy él tå å "Socrates walketh ;' but how to resolve πλούστερα και τελειότερα προϊέναι τα γάρ τhis sentence into a noun and verb, and συνθέτα μάλλον συνήθη ημίν, και γνωριμώ- these again into syllables, and syllables τερα ούτω γούν και ο παίς είμαι μεν λό- into letters or elements, here he is at a γον, και είπείν, Σωκράτης περιπατεί, οίδε loss.” Am. in Com. de Predic.


29. τούτον δε αναλύσαι εις όνομα και ρημα, & Merchant of Venice. και ταυτα εις συλλαβάς, κακείνα είς στοι- b Paradise Lost, iv. 866, χεία, ουκέτι: “Human nature may be well

When Macbeth says to the ghost of Banquo,

Hence, horrible shadow!

Unreal mockery, hence! he speaks an imperative sentence, founded upon the passion of batred. When Milton says, in the character of his Allegro,

Haste thee, nymph, and bring with thee

Jest and youthful jollity, he, too, speaks an imperative sentence, though founded on the passion, not of hatred, but of love.

When, in the beginning of the Paradise Lost, we read the following address :

And chiefly thou, O Spirit, that dost prefer,
Before all temples the upright heart, and pure,

Instruct me, for thou know'st ... this is not to be called an imperative sentence, though perhaps it bear the same form, but rather (if I may use the word) it is a sentence precative or optative.

What, then, shall we say? Are sentences to be quoted in this manner without ceasing ; 'all differing from each other in their stamp and character? Are they no way reducible to certain definite classes? If not, they can be no objects of rational comprehension. Let us however try.

It is a phrase often applied to a man, when speaking, that “he speaks his mind;" as much as to say, that his speech or discourse is a publishing of some energy or motion of his soul. So it, indeed, is in every one that speaks, excepting alone the dissembler or hypocrite; and he, too, as far as possible, affects the appearance.

Now the powers of the soul (over and above the mere nutritive).may be included, all of them, in those of perception, and those of volition. By the powers of perception, I mean the senses and the intellect; by the powers of volition, I mean, in an extended sense, not only the will, but the several passions and appetites; in short, all that moves to action, whether rational or irrational.

If, then, the leading powers of the soul be these two, it is plain that every speech or sentence, as far as it exhibits the soul, must of course respect one or other of these.

If we assert, then is it a sentence which respects the powers of perception. For what, indeed, is to assert, if we consider the examples above alleged, but to publish some perception either of the senses or the intellect?

Again, if we interrogate, if we command, if we pray, or if we wish, (which, in terms of art, is to speak sentences interrogative, imperative, precative, or optative,) what do we but publish so many different volitions? For who is it that questions?

i Vid. Aristot. de An. ii. 4.

he that has a desire to be informed. Who is it that commands? he that has a will, which he would have obeyed. What are those beings who either wish or pray? those who feel certain wants, either for themselves or others.

If, then, the soul's leading powers be the two above mentioned, and it be true that all speech is a publication of these powers, it will follow that every sentence will be either a sentence of assertion, or a sentence of volition. And thus, by referring all of them to one of these two classes, have we found an expedient to reduce their infinitude.“

The extensions of speech are quite indefinite, as may be seen if we compare the Æneid to an Epigram of Martial. But the longest extension with which grammar has to do, is the extension here considered, that is to say, a sentence. The greater extensions (such as syllogisms, paragraphs, sections, and complete works) belong not to grammar, but to arts of higher order; not to mention that all of them are but sentences repeated.

Now a sentence' may be sketched in the following description: “a compound quantity of sound significant, of which certain parts are themselves also significant.

Thus when I say “the sun shineth,” not only the whole quantity of sound has a meaning, but certain parts also, such as sun

” and “shineth.” Ε Ρητέον ούν ότι της ψυχής της ημετέ- igitur est, cum anima nostra duplicem poρας διττας εχούσης δυνάμεις, τας μέν γνωσ- testatem habeat, cognitionis, et vitæ, quæ τικάς, τας δε ζωτικάς, τας και ορεκτικάς etiam appetitionis ac cupiditatis appellatur, λεγομένας: (λέγω δε γνωστικάς, μεν, καθ' que vero cognitionis est, vis est, qua res &ς γινώσκομεν έκαστον των όντων, οίον singulas cognoscimus, ut mens, cogitatia, νούν, διάνοιαν, δόξαν, φατασίαν και αίσθη- opinio, phantasia, sensus : appetitus vero σιν· ορεκτικάς δε, καθ' ας ορεγόμεθα των facultas est, qua bona, vel quae sunt, vel αγαθών, και των όντων, και των δοκούντων, que videntur, concupiscimus, ut sant Foοίον βούλησιν λέγω, προαίρεσιν, θυμόν, και luntas, consilium, ira, cupiditas: quatuor επιθυμίαν) τα μεν τέτταρα είδη του λόγου orationis species, preter enunciantem, a (τα παρά τον αποφαντικών) από των ορεκ- partibus animi profciscuntur, que concuτικών δυνάμεων προέρχονται της ψυχής, piscunt ; non cum animus ipse per se agit, ουκ αυτής καθ' αυτήν ενεργούσης, αλλά sed cum ad alium se convertit, qui ei ad προς έτερον αποτεινομένης (τον συμβάλ- consequendum id, quod cupit, conducere λεσθαι δοκούντα προς το τυχεϊν της posse videatur; atque etiam vel rationem ορέξεως) και ήτοι λόγον παρ' αυτού ζητού- ab eo exquirit, ut in oratione, quam perons, kabátep & Toll TVOJOTIkoû kal épw cunctantem, aut interrogantem vocant ; vel τηματικού καλουμένου λόγου, και πράγμα, rem: sique rem, vel cum ipsum consequi και ει πράγμα, ήτοι αυτού εκείνου τυχεϊν cupit, quicum loquitur, ut in optante oraεφιεμένης, προς δν ο λόγος, ώσπερ επί του tione, vel aliquam ejus actionem: atque in κλητικού, ή τινος παρ' αυτού πράξεως και hac, vel ut a praestantiore, ut in deprecaTaúrns, ) 's Tapà Kpelttovos, às em tñs tione ; vel ut ab inferiore, ut in eo, qui proευχής, ή ως παρά χείρονος, ως επί του κυ- prie jussus nominatur. Sola autem enunρίως καλουμένης προστάξεως" μόνον δε το cians a cognoscendi facultate profciscitur: άποψαντικών από των γνωστικών, και έστι hecque nunciat rerum cognitionem, que in τούτο εξαγγελτικόν της γενομένης εν ημίν nobis est, aut veram, aut simulatam. Ιtaque γνώσεως των πραγμάτων αληθώς, η φαινο- haec sola verum falsumque capit: praeterea μένως, διό και μόνον τούτο δεκτικόν έστιν vero nulla. Ammon. in Libr. de Interpreαληθείας ή ψεύδους, των δε άλλων ουδέν. tatione. The meaning of the above passage being Λόγος δε φωνή συνθετη σημαντική, implied in the text, we take its translation ής ένια μέρη καθ' αυτά σημαίνει τι. Αrist. from the Latin interpreter. Dicendum Poet. c. 20. See also De Interpret. c. 4.

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But what shall we say? Have these parts again other parts, which are in like manner significant, and so may the progress be pursued to infinite? Can we suppose all meaning, like body, to. be divisible, and to include within itself other meanings without end? If this be absurd, then must we necessarily admit that there is such a thing as a sound significant, of which no part is of itself significant. And this is what we call the proper character of a word. For thus, though the words sun and shineth have each a meaning, yet is there certainly no meaning in any of their parts, neither in the syllables of the one, nor in the letters of the other.

If, therefore, all speech, whether in prose or verse, every whole, every section, every paragraph, every sentence, imply a certain meaning, divisible into other meanings, but words imply a meaning which is not so divisible; it follows that words will be the smallest parts of speech, inasmuch as nothing less has any meaning at all.

To know, therefore, the species of words, must needs contribute to the knowledge of speech, as it implies a knowledge of its minutest parts.

This, therefore, must become our next inquiry.



LET us first search for the species of words among those parts of speech commonly received by grammarians. For example, in one of the passages above cited.

The man that hath no music in himself,
And is not mov'd with concord of sweet sounds,

Is fit for treasons. Here the word the is an article ; man, no, music, concord, sweet, sounds, fit, treasons, are all nouns, some substantive and some adjective; that and himself are pronouns; hath and is are verbs; mored, a participle; not, an adverb; and, a conjunction; in, rith, and for, are prepositions. In one sentence we have all

η φωνή σημαντική,-ης μέρος ουδέν έστι ideo dictum est, nequis conetur vires in duas Kall autò onuavtikby. De Poetic. c. 20. partes dividere, hoc est, in vi et res; non De Interpret. c. 2 and 3. Priscian's defi- enim ad totum intelligendum hæc fit divisio. nition of a word (lib. ii.) is as follows: To Priscian we may add Theodore Gaza :Dictio est pars minima orationis constructe, Λέξις δε, μέρος ελάχιστον κατά σύνταξιν id est, in ordine compositæ. Pars autem, abyou. Introd. Gram. I. iv. Plato shewed quantum ad totum intelligendum, id est, them this characteristic of a word. See ad totius sensus intellectum. Hoc autem Cratylus, p. 385. edit. Serr.

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