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der, may be separated by a comma on both sides ; as,
Nor, even on this affecting occasion, should I presume to deviate.'
2. A simple sentence, when long, and when the nominative case is accompanied with inseparable adjuncts, may admit of a pause immediately before the verb; as, * To be totally indifferent to praise or censure, is a real defect in character."
3. The nominative case independent, the case absolute, the infinitive absolute, and nouns in apposition when the latter is attended by inseparable adjuncts, must be separated by commas ; as, 'Do, Trim, said my uncle Toby. His father dying, he succeeded to the estate. To confess the truth, I was in fault. Death, the King of Terrors, chose a prime minister.'
4. When the verb of a simple sentence, contained within a compound one, is understood, a comma may often be inserted ; as, ‘From law arises security ; from security, curiosity ; from curiosity, knowledge.'
5. The words may, so, hence, again, first, secondly, formerly, lastly, in short, &c. must generally be separated by commas.
RULE II. A compound sentence must be resolved into simple ones, and separated by commas ; as, “The decay, the waste, the dissolution of plants may affect our spirits, and suggest a train of serious reflections.'
Frapp 1. Two words of the same kind, immediately connected by a conjunction, must not be separated ; but if there be more than two, they must all be separated, unless connected in pairs-in which case the pairs only must be separated ; as, “Some men sin deliberately and presumptuously. The decease of parents, friends, and companions should promote our improvement. There is a natural difference between merit and demerit, virtue and vice, wisdom and folly.'
2. In comparative sentences, and indeed in compound sentences generally, where the simple members are short and closely connected, the comma is better omit
ted.; as, "No preacher is so successful as time. Wisdom is better than riches.'.
3. In sentences connected by what, and where the relative is understood, the comma is omitted ; as, “Eat what is set before you. Value duly the opportunities you enjoy.
RULE III. When a pause longer than a comma is required, and yet the sense is incomplete, a semicolon should be used.
RULE IV. The colon is used to divide those members of a sentence which are too little connected for the semicolon, and yet not sufficiently independent of each other to constitute them distinct sentences
RULE V. A sentence, making complete sense in itself, requires a period after it
RULE VI. Interrogative sentences require a note of interrogation, and those expressing wonder or surprise a note of admira• tion, after them.
In applying the foregoing Rules and Exceptions, particularly those which relate to the comma, great re-i gard must be had to the length of clauses, and to the manner and degree of their connexion one with another.
Other marks or characters are occasionally employed in writing ; but the use of them is sufficiently explained in the spelling-books.
QUESTIONS. What is Punctuation ?-What is an adjunct, or imperfect phrase ? What is a simple sentence ?-What is a compound sentence ?--Repeat the first Rule.- What is the first Exception to this Rule?--In the example under this Exception, which is the adjunct ?-What is the second Exception ?- In the example following it, why is there a comma after censure? What is the third excep-,
tion ?-In the examples following, why is Trim separated by commas ? Why are there commas after dying ? and after truth ?-_Why is the phrase King of Terrors,' separated by commas ?-Repeat the fourth Exception.-In the example following, why is there a comma after secu rity ? and after curiosity ?-What is the fifth Exception ?
What is the second general Rule - In the example under it, why are there commas after decay ; and waste; and spirits ?~Repeat the first Exception to Rule second. In the first example under this Exception, why is there not a comma - In the next example, why is there a comma after parents; and friends ?-And in the next, why are there commas after demerit ; and vice ?-What is the second Exception to this Rule ?--In the examples under it, why are there no commas ?--What is the third Exception --Repeat the four remaining Rules. To what must we have particular regard, in applying the foregoing F.ules and Exceptions ?
The pupil should be required to point the following sentences, agreeably to the preceding Rules :
COMMA. The tutor by instruction and discipline lays the foundation of the pupil's future honor
Self-conceit presumption and obstinacy blast the prospect of many a youth
Deliberate slowly execute promptly
To live soberly righteously and piously comprehends the whole of our duty
The path of piety and virtue pursued with a firm and constant spirit will assuredly lead to happiness
Continue my dear child to make virtue thy principal study
Peace of mind being secured we may smile at misfortunes
He who is a stranger to industry may possess but he cannot enjoy
Beware of those rash and dangerous connexions which may afterwards load thee with dishonor
SEMICOLON. The path of truth is a plain and a safe path that of falsehood is a perplexing maze
Modesty is one of the chief ornaments of youth and has ever been esteemed a presage of rising merit
Heaven is the region of gentleness and friendship hell of fierceness and animosity
COLON. Often is the smile of gayety assumed whilst the heart aches within though folly may laugh guilt will sting
There is no mortal truly wise and restless at the same time wisdom is the repose of minds
PERIOD. We ruin the happiness of life when we attempt to raise it too high a tolerable and comfortable state is all that we can propose to ourselves on earth peace and contentment not bliss nor transport are the full portion of man perfect joy is reserved for heaven
INTERROGATION AND EXCLAMATION, To lie down on the pillow after a day spent in temperance in beneficence and in piety how sweet it is
We wait till to-morrow to be happy alas why not today shall we be younger are we sure we shall be healthier will our passions become feebler and our love of the world less
The preceding rules of Punctuation, prepared for the author's smaller compilation of grammar, are of course general, and by some may not be thought sufficient. For ihe satisfaction of such, the following system, taken from Mr. Murray's larger work, is subjoined.
PUNCTUATION. PUNCTUATION is the art of dividing a written composition into sentences, or parts of sentences, by points or stops, for the purpose of marking the different pauses which the sense, and an accurate pronunciation require.
The Comma represents the shortest pause ; the Semicolon, a pause double that of the comma; the Colon, donible that of the semicolon ; and the Period, double that of the colon.
The precise quantity or duration of each pause cannot be defined ; for it varies with the time of the whole. The same composition may be rehearsed in a quicker or a slower time ; but the proportion between the pauses should be ever invariable.
In order more clearly to determine the proper appiication of the points, we must distinguish between an imperfect phrase, a simple sentence, and a compound sentence
An imperfect phrase contains no assertion, or does not amount to a proposition or sentence : as, Therefore ; in haste; studious of praise.'
A simple sentence has but one subject, and one finite verb, expressed or implied : as, ' Temperance preserves health.'
A compound sentence has more than one subject, or one finite verb, either expressed or understood; or it con- . sists of two or more simple sentences connected together: as, 'Good nature mends and beautifies all objects ;' Vir!ue refines the affections, but vice debases them.'
In a sentence, the subject and the verb, or either of nem, may be accompanied with several adjuncts; as, the object, the end, the circumstance of time, place, manner, and the like : and the subject or verb may be either immediately connected with them, or mediately ; that is, by being connected with something which is connected with some other, and so on, as, ' The mind, unoccupied with useful knowledge, becomes a magazine of trifles and follies.
Members of sentences may be divided into simple and compound members.