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Besides the points which mark the pauses in discourse, there are characters, which denote a different modulation of voice, in correspondence to the sense. These are,
The point of Interrogation,?
The point of Exclamation,!
The Parenthesis, ()
A note of Interrogation is used at the end of an interrogative sentence; that is, when a question is asked: as, 'Who will accompany me?' 'Shall we always be friends?'
Questions which a person asks himself in contemplation, ought to be terminated by points of interrogation: as, 'Who adorned the heavens with such exquisite beauty?' 'At whose command do the planets perform their constant revolutions?'
'To whom can riches give reptile and trust,
A point of interrogation is improper after sentences which are not questions, but only expressions of admiration, or of some other emotion,
'How many instances have we of chastity and excellence in the fair sex!'
"With what prudence does the son of Sirach advise us, in the choice of our companions!'
A note of interrogation should not be employed, in cases where it is only said a question has been asked, and where the words are not used as a question. 'The Cyprians asked me why I wept.' To give this sentence the interrogative form, it should be expressed thus, 'The Cyprj&ns said to. me, 'Why dost thou weep?'
Of the Exclamatory point.
The note of Exclamation is applied to expressions of sudden emotion, surprise, joy, grief, &c. a,nd also to invocations or addresses: as, 'My friend ! this conduct amazes me!' 'Bless the Lord, O my soul! and forget not all his benefits!'
'Oh! had we both our humble state maintained,
'Hear me, 0 Lord ! for thy loving kindness is great!'
It is difficult in some cases, to distinguish between an interrogative and exclamatory sentence : but a sentence, in which any wonder or admiration is expressed, and no answer either expected or implied, may be always properly terminated by a note of exclamation: as, 'How much vanity in the pursuits of men!' 'Who can sufficiently express the goodness of our Creator!' 'What is more amiable than virtue!'
The interrogation and exclamation points are indeterminate as to their quantity or time, and may be equivalent in that respect to a semicolon, a colon, or a period, as the sense may require. They mark an elevation of the voice.
The utility o£ the points of Interrogation and Exclamation, appears from the following examples, in which the meaning is signified and discriminated solely by the points.
'How great waa the sacrifice!'
A Parenthesis is a clause containing some necessary information, or useful remark, introduced into the body of a sentence obliquely, and which may be omitted without injuring the grammatical construction ; as,
'Know then this trnth, (enough for man to know,)
'And was the ransom paid? It was ; and paid
'To gain a posthumous reputation, is to save four or five letters (for what is a name besides?) from oblivion.' 'Know ye not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he liveth?'
If the incidental clause is short, or perfectly coincides with the rest of the sentence, it is not proper to use the parenthetical characters. The following instances are therefore improper uses of the parenthesis. 'Speak you (who saw) his wonders in the deep.' 'Every planet (as the Creator has made nothing in vain) is most probably inhabited.' 'He found them asleep again; (for their eyes were heavy;) neither knew they what to answer him.'
The parenthesis generally marks a moderate depression of the voice, and may be accompanied with every point which the sense would require, if the parenthetical characters were omitted. It ought to terminate with the same kind of stop which the member has, that precedes it; and to contain that stop within the parenthetical marks. We must, however, except cases of interrogation and exclamation : as, 'While they wish to please, (and why should they not wish it ?) they disdain dishonorable means.' 'It was represented by an analogy, (Oh, how inadequate !) which was borrowed from the religion of paganism.'
OP THE APOSTROPHE, CARET, &C.
There are other characters, which are frequently made use of in composition, and which may be explained in this place, viz.
An apostrophe, marked thus ' is used to abbreviate or
shorten a word: as, ' 'tis for it is; tho' for though:, e'en for even; judged for judged.' Its chief use is to show the genitive case of nouns: as, 'A man's property ; a woman's ornament.'
A Caret marked thus A is placed where some word or letter happens to be left out in writing, and which is inserted over tVe line. This mark is also called a circumflex, when placed over a particular vowel, to denote a long syllable: as, 'Euphrates.'
A Hyphen, marked thus - is employed in connecting compound words : as, 'Lap-dog, tea-pot, pre-existence, self-love, to-morrow, mothe"T-in-law.'
It is also used when a word is divided, and the former part is written or printed at the end of one line, and the latter part at the beginning of another. In this case, it is placed at the end of the first line, not at the beginning of the second.
The acute Accent marked thus' : as-, 'Fancy.' The Grave thus^ : as, 'Favor.'
In English the accentual marks are chiefly used in spelling-books and dictionaries, to mark the syllables which require a particular stress of the voice in pronunciation.
The stress is laid on long and short syllables indiscriminately. In order to distinguish the one from the other, some writers of dictionaries have placed the grave on the former, and the acute on the latter, in this manner: 'Minor, mineral, lively, lived, rival, river.'
The proper mark to distinguish a long syllable, is this": as, 'Rosey :' and a short one this": as, 'Folly.' This last mark is called a breve.
A Diaeresis, thus marked --, consists of two points placed over one of the vowels that would otherwise make a diphthong, and parts them into two syllables : as,' Creator, coadjutor, aerial.'
A section, marked thus §, is the division of a discourse,
A paragraph IT denotes the beginning of a new subject,
A Quotation" ". Two inverted commas are generally
"The proper study of mankind is man."
Crotchets or Brackets [ *^serve to enclose a word or
An Index or hand ICJ" points out a remarkable pas-
A Brace > is used in poetry at the end of a triplet
Braces are also used to connect a number of words
An Asterisk, or little star,* directs the reader to some
An Ellipsis is also used, when some letters in a
word, or some words in a verse, are omitted: as, 'Th«
An Obelisk, which is marked thus f and Parallels