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“The girls learn.”—What gender, number, and case is girls 2
“My father's house.”—What case is father's 2
“For thy coolnośs' sake, forgive my sins.” —What obes, case, and gender is goodness 2–), at number, case, and gender is sake 2—What number, case, and gender is sins 2
“Love to men.”—What number, case, and gender is men 2
Some nouns literally neuter are used figuratively in the masculine or feminine gender; as when we say of the sun, he is sitting; or of a ship, she sails well. . In this figurative way, we often speak of the moon, the earth, the church, a ship, a country, a city, virtue, fortune, &c. as feminine; and of the sun, time, a mighty river, &c. as masculine.
The English language has three methods of distinguishing the sex, viz.
1. By different words; as,
JMale. Female. .Male. Female. Bachelor. Maid. Husband. Wife. Boar. Sow. King. Queen. Boy. - Girl. Lad. Lass. Brother. Sister. Lord. Lady. Buck. Doe. Man. Woman. Bull. Cow. Master. Mistress. Bullock or Heif Milter. Spawner. Steer. elter. Nephew. Niece. Cock. Hen. Ram. Ewe. Dog. , Bitch. - Sing Songstress or Drake. Duck. Inger. } Singer. Earl. Countess. Sloven. Slut. Father. Mother. Son. Daughter. Friar. Nun. Stag. Hind. Gander. Goose. Uncle. Aunt. Hart. Roe. Wizard. Witch.
2. By a difference of termination ; as,
3. By a noun, pronoun, or adjective, being prefixed to the substantive; as,
Some nouns are either masculine or feminine; as, parent, child, cousin, friend, neighbour, servant.
Some nouns, from the nature of the things which they express, are used only in the singular form; as, wheat, pitch, gold, &c. others only in the plural form; as, bellows, scissors, lungs, riches, &.c.
Some words are the same in both numbers; aa, deer, sheep, swine, &c.
Nouns ending iaforfe are commonly rendered plural by the change of those terminations into ties; as, loaf, loaves; half, halves; wife, wives. &.c.
Nouns which have y in the singular, and no other vowel in the same syllable, form their plural in ies; as beauty, beauties ; fly, flies.
Several nouns .form their plural irregularly; as, man, men; woman, women; ox, oxen; child, children; foot, feet; goose, geese; tooth, teeth; louse, lice; mouse, mice; penny, pence; die, dice.
It is agreeable to analogy, and the practice ofthe generality of correct writers, to construe the following words as plural nouns: pains, riches, alms: and also, mathematics, metaphysics, politics, ethics, optics, pneumatics, with other similar names of sciences.
The word news, notwithstanding its termination, is regarded as singular.
The word means may be singular or plural, as the construction requires.
The following words, which have been adopted from the Hebrew, Greek, and Latin languages, are thus distinguished with respect to number:
Some words, derived from the learned languages, are confined to the plural number; as, antipodes, literati, minutiae.
The following nouns, being both singular and plural in Latin, are used in the same manner in English: hiatus, apparatus, series, species.
When the plural of nouns does not end in s, the possessive case is formed by the addition of s, and an apostrophe, just like the possessive singular; as, men's work; women's clothes.
When the singular ends in double s, the apostrophic * is not always omitted, in forming the possessive; as, witness's testimony.
In words ending in ence the apostrophic s is commonly dropped even in the singular; as, "For conscience' sake."
When proper names end in s, the apostrophic s is usually added; as " Adams's administration;" " Willis's paper." But in proper names ending in us, custom seems to require that the second s be omitted; as, "Jesus' sake;" "Peleus' son;" "Brutus' speech," &c.
Sometimes, though rarely, two nouns in the possessive case immediately succeed each other; as, "My friend's wife's sister;" "My husband's brother's son."
Nouns are declined, as in the following examples:
JVoni. Man. Nom. Men.
Poss. Man's. Poss. Men's.
Obj. Mani Obj. Men.
Questions on the Review.
How many ways are there in our language of distinguishing the sex?—What are they?— What is the feminine of Master?—of Nephew?—of Sloven?—of Executor?—of Hero?—of Landgrave?—of Widower? —What nouns have no plural form?—What have no singular form?—What is the plural of Cherub?—of Criterion?—of Datum?—of Radius?—of Stamen?—
of Vortex?—In what instances is the apostrophic s omitted, in forming the possessive case?—Decline Man.—Decline Mother.—
An adjective is a word added to a noun, to express its quality ; as, " an industrious man.*k The only variation which adjectives ;»dmit, is that of the degress of comparison. There are three degrees of comparison; the positive, the comparative, and the superlative. The positive slate expresses the quality of an object, without any increase or diminution ; as, wise, great. The comparative degree increases or lessens the positive in signification; as, wiser, greater. The superlative degree increases or lessens the positive, to the utmost; as, wisest, greatest.
If the simple word, or positive, have but one syllable, the comparative is formed by the addition of r, or er; and the superlative by the addition of st, or est, to the end of it; a*, ivise, wiser, wisest,—great, greater, greatest. But if the positive consists of more than one syllable, the comparative and superlative are usually formed by prefixing more, and most; or less, and least; as, beautiful, more beautiful, most beautiful; virtuous, less virtuous, least virtuous.
To determine whether a word is an adjective, add the noun thing; and if the expression makes complete sense, it is an adjective. The adjective, when the article precedes it and no noun follows it, is used as a noun.