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The power of speech is a facúlty peculiar to man, and was bestowed on him by his beneficent Creator for the greatest and most excellent uses ; but, alas ! how often do we pervert it to the

! worst of purposes.

In the foregoing sentence, the words, the, a, are articles; power, speech, faculty, man, Creator, uses, purposes, are substantives; him, his, we, it, are pronouns; peculiar, beneficent, greatest, excellent, worst, are adjectives ; is, was, bestowed, do, pervert, are verbs; most, how, often, are adverbs ; of, to, on, by, for, are prepositions ; and, but, are conjunctions; and alas is an interjection.

The substantives, power, speech, faculty, and the rest, are general, or common, names of things; whereof there are may sorts belonging to the same kind; or many individuals belonging to the same sort : as there are many sorts of power, many sorts of speech, many sorts of faculty, many individuals of that sort of animal called man; and so on. These general or common names are here applied in a more or less extensive signification: according as they are used without either, or with the one, or with the other, of the two articles a and the. The words speech, man, being accompanied with no article, are taken in their largest extent ; and signify all of the kind or sort; all sorts of speech and all men. The word faculty, with the article a before it, is used in a more confined signification, for some one out of many of that kind: for it is here implied, that there are other faculties peculiar to man beside speech. The words power, Creator, uses, purposes, with the article, the before them (for his Creator is the same as the Creator of him), are used in the most confined signification, for the things here mentioned and ascertained: the power is not any one indeterminate power out of many sorts, but that particular sort of power here specified ; namely, the power of speech : the Creator is the one great Creator of man and of all things: the uses, and the purposes, are particular uses and purposes; the former are explained to be those in particular, that are the greatest and most excellent; such, for instance, as the glory of God, and the common benefit of mankind; the latter to be the worst, as lying, slandering, blaspheming, and the like.

The pronouns, him, his, we, it, stand instead of some of the nouns, or substantives, going before them; as him supplies the place of man; his of man's; we, of men, implied in the general name man, including all men (of which number is the speaker ;) it, of the power before mentioned. If, instead of these pronouns, the nouns for which they stand had been used, the sepse would have been the same; but the frequent repetition of the same words would have been disagreeable and tedious: as the power of speech peculiar to man, bestowed on man, by man's Creator, &c.


The adjectives, peculiar, beneficent, greatest, excellent, worst, are added to their several substantives, to denote the character and quality of each.

The verbs, is, was bestowed, do pervert, signify severally, being, suffering, and doing. By the first it is implied, that there is such a thing as the power of speech, and it is affirmed to be of such kind ; namely, a faculty peculiar to man: by the second it is said to have been acted upon, or to have had something done to it; namely, to have been bestowed on man: by the last we are said to act upon it, or to do something to it; namely, to pervert it.

The adverbs, most, often, are added to the adjective excellent,' and to the verb pervert, to shew the circumstance belonging to them; namely, that of the highest degree to the former, and that of frequency to the latter; concerning the degree of which frequency also a question is made by the adverb hon added to the adverb

The prepositions of, to, on, by, for, placed before the substantives and pronouns, speech, man, him, &c. connect them with other words, substantives, adjectives, and verbs ; as, power, peculiar, bestowed, &c. and shew the relation which they have to those words; as the relation of subject, object, agent, end; for denoting the end; by the agent, on the object; to and of denote possession, or the belonging of one thing to another.

The conjunctions, and, and but, connect the three parts of the sentence together; the first more closely, both with regard to the sentence and the sense; the second connecting the parts of the sentence, though less strictly, and at the same time, expressing an opposition in the sense.

The interjection, alas ! expresses the concern and regret of the speaker ; and though thrown in with propriety, yet might have been omitted, without injuring the construction of the sentence, or destroying the sense.


The Article is a word prefixed to substantives, to point them out and to shew how far their signification exends.

In English there are but two articles, a, and the: a becomes an before a vowel, y and w excepted ; and before a silent h preceding a vowel.

4 is used in a vague sense to point out one single thing of the kind, in other respects indeterminate : the determines what partia cular thing is meant.

A substantive, without any article to limit it, is taken in its widest sense: thus man means all mankind; as, “ The proper study of mankind is man.”

Pope. Where mankind and man may change places, without making any alteration in the sense. A man means some one or other of that kind, indefinitely; the man menns, definitely, that particular man,


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who is spoken of; the former, therefore, is called the indefinite, the latter the definite article.

*Example: “ Man was made for society, and ought to extend his good will to all men: but a man will naturally entertain a more particular kindness for the men with whom he has the most frequent intercourse; an enter into a still closer union with the man whose temper and disposition suit best with his own"

It is of the nature of both the articles to determine or limit the thing spoken of: a determines it to be one single thing of the kind, leaving it still uncertain which ; the determines which it is, or, of many, which they are. The first, therefore, can only be joined to sulustantives in the singular number; the last may also be joined to plurals.


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A Substantive, or Noun, is the name of a thing; of whatever we conceive in any way to subsist, or of which we have any notion..

Substantives are of two sorts ; proper and common names. Proper names are the names appropriated to individuals; as the names of persons and places ; such are George, London. Common names stand for kinds, containing many sorts ; or for sorts containing many individuals under them; as animal, man. And these common names, whether of kinds or sorts, are applied to express individuals, by the help of articles added to them, as hath been already shewn; and by the help of definitive pronouns, as we shall see hereafter.

Whatever is spoken of is represented as one, or more in number; these two manners of representation in respect of number are called the Singular and the Plural number.

In English, the substantive singular is made plural, for the most part, by adding to it s, or es, where it is necessary for the pronunciation: as king, kings ; fox, foxes ; leaf, leaves ; in which last, and many others, f is also changed into v, for the sake of an easier pronunciation, and more agreeable sound.

Some few plurals end in en: as oxen, children, brethren, and men, women, by changing the a of the singular into e. This form we have retained from the Teutonic; as likewise the introduction of the e in the former syllable of two of the last instances; weomen, (for so we pronounce it,) brethren, from womar, brother : something like which may be noted in some other forms of plurals: as, mouse, mice ; louse, lice; tooth, teeth; foot, feet ; goose, geese.

The words sheep, deer, are the same in both numbers.

Some nouns, from the nature of the things which they express, are used only in the singular, others only in the plural form: as, wheat, pitch, gold, sloth, pride, &c. and bellows, scissars, lungs, bowels, &c.

The English language, to express different connections and relations of one thing to another, uses for the most part, prepositions. The Greek and Latin among the ancient, and some too among the

modern languages, as the German, vary the termination or ending of the substantive, to answer the same purpose. These different endings are in those languages called cases. And the English being derived from the same origin as the German, that is, from the Teutonic, is not wholly without them. For instance, the relation of possession, or belonging, is often expressed by a Case, or different ending of the substantive. This case answers to the genitive case ia Latin, and may still be so called ; though perhaps more properly the possessive case. Thus God's grace:” which may also be expressed by the preposition; as “the grace of God." It was formerly written ; “ Godis grace; we now always shorten it with an apostrophe; often very improperly, when we are obliged to pronounce it fully; as, Thomas's book: that is, « Thomasis book," not Thomas his book," as it is commonly supposed.

The English in its substantives has but two different terminations for cases, that of the nominative, which simply expresses the name of the thing, and that of the possessive case.

Things are frequently considered with relation to the distinction of sex or gender ; as being male or female, or neither the one nor the other. Hence, substantives are of the masculine, or feminine, or neuter (that is, neither,) gender :: which latter is only the exclusion of all consideration of gender.

The English language, with singular propriety, following nature alone, applies the distinction of masculine and feminine only to the names of animals ; all the rest are neuter; except when, by a poetical or rhetorical fiction, things inanimale and qualities are exhibited as persons, and consequently become either male or female; and this gives the English an advantage above most other languages in the poetical and rhetorical style : for when nouns naturally neuter are converted into masculine and feminine, the personification is more distinctly and forcibly marked.

Some few substantives are distinguished in their gender by their termination : as, prince, princess ; aclor, actress ; lion, lioness; hero, heroine, 8c.

The chief use of gender in English is in the pronoun of the third person ; which must agree in that respect with the noun for which it stands.


A Pronoun is a word standing instead of a noun, as its substitute or representative.

In the Pronoun are to be considered the person, number, gender, and case.

There are three persons which may be the subject of any discourse : first, the person who speaks may speak of himself; secondly, he may speak of the person to whom he addresses himself ; thirdly, he may speak of some other person.

These are called, respectively, the first, second, and third persons: and are expressed by the pronouns, I, thou, he.

As the speakers, the persons spoken to, and the other persons spoken of, may be many ; so each of these persons hath the plural number; we, ye, they.

The person speaking and spoken to, being at the same time the subjects of the discourse, are supposed to be present; from which and other circumstances their sex is commonly known, and needs not he marked by a distinction of gender in their pronouns: but the third person or thing spoken of being absent, and in many respects unknown, it is necessary, that it should be marked by a distinction of gender ; at least when some particular person or thing is spoken of which ought to be more distinctly marked: accordingly the pronoun singular of the third person hath the three genders: he, she, it.

Pronouns have three cases ; the nominative, the genitive or possessive, like nouns; and moreover a case, which follows the verb active, or the preposition, expressing the object of an action, or of a relation. It answers to the oblique cases in Latin, and may be properly enough called the Objective case.

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according to their persons, numbers, cases, and genders.

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Nom. Poss. Obj.


First Person.


Second Person. Thou, Thine, Thee;

Ye or You,

Third Person.
Mas. He, His, Him;
Fem. She, Hers, Her;

Neut. It, Its, It;

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The personal pronouns have the nature of substantives, and, as such, stand by themselves; the rest have the nature of adjectives, and, as such, are joined to substantives ; and may be called pronominal adjectives.

Thy, my, her, ours, yours, their, are pronominal adjectives: but his (that is, he's), her's, our's, your's, their's, have evidently the form of the possessive case: and by analogy, mine, thine, may be esteemed of the same rank. All these are used, when the Noun, to which they belong, is understood; the two latter sometimes also instead of my, thy, when the noun following them begins with a vowel.

Besides the foregoing, there are several other pronominal adjec

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