Page images
PDF
EPUB

NOTES

BOOKS REFERRED TO IN THE NOTES.

Eve's School German Grammar. David Nutt. The references are

chiefly to the Syntax. (A second edition, revised and enlarged, has appeared since the following notes were set up in type. The numbering of the paragraphs in the Syntax of the first

edition is however retained in brackets in the second.) Aue's German Grammar. W. and R. Chambers. Whitney's German Grammar. Macmillan & Co. Whitney's Compendious German and English Dictionary, with Notation

of Correspondences and Brief Etymologies. Macmillan & Co.

Among the works which have been consulted, in writing the notes, the following may be mentioned for the benefit of those who in the prosecution of more advanced studies may wish to make use of the best German sources : The Wörterbücher of Grimm (complete down to N, except G, M

and N, which are in course of completion), Sanders (full and complete ; definitions precise and clear, quotations abundant; as to etymology and the historical development of the language, scanty and not trustworthy), Weigand (chiefly etymological), and Kluge (etymological only). The Fremdwörterbücher of Sanders and Heyse. Sachs' Encyclopädisches deutsch-französisches Wörterbuch (superior to any Germ.-Eng. Dict. yet published, and very useful to a student with a moderate knowledge of French). Lexer's Mittelhochdeutsches Wörterbuch. Schade's Altdeutsches

Wörterbuch. Becker: Handbuch der deutschen Sprache. Heyse: Deutsche Schul

grammatik. Gelbe: Deutsche Sprachlehre. Koch: Deutsche Grammatik (brief outline of historical grammar). Willmanns: Deutsche Grammatik (brief and chiefly elementary, but excellent). Vernaleken: Deutsche Syntax. Andresen : Sprachgebrauch und Sprachrichtigkeit im Deutschen.

NOTES

Der stumme Rathsherr.

INTRODUCTION.

The growth of towns in Germany hardly dates earlier than the times of Henry the Fowler (919-936). He is regarded as the founder of the burgher class, which as it grew and flourished, furnished a powerful counterpoise to the hitherto crushing supremacy of the feudal nobility and the clergy. The towns grew up spontaneously, or were established by authority, for the most part around royal fortresses, the castles of the princes and great nobles, or powerful ecclesiastical foundations. They were divided from the first into imperial towns (Reichsstädte), which stood immediately under the suzerainty of the German King and Roman Emperor, and landstädte, whose direct allegiance was due to the sovereign prince (Landesfürst), ecclesiastical or secular, of the territory within which they lay. In towns of both these classes there were generally governors and magistrates with various titles (Burggraf, Schult. Heiß, Vogt), in whom, as representatives of the king or other lord of the town, was vested the ultimate authority in military and civil affairs. The class of burghers, or citizens proper, who alone possessed political rights, comprised at first only the vassals and followers of the king and of the great nobles, together with the independent landed proprietors of knightly birth (Ritterbürtige),—the so-called Patricians (Patrizier), or “the families” (die Geschlechter). Afterwards the most wealthy and powerful of the merchant class, which itself comprised many persons of noble birth, became closely allied with and ultimately a constituent part of this aristocratic or ruling order. The mass of the population, the industrial and labouring classes, had no share in the government of the towns, and for the most part did not even enjoy complete personal freedom. In most of the towns the municipal authorities contrived by means of contracts obtained through gifts, or by direct purchase, gradually to get into their own hands the powers exercised by the governors and magistrates appointed by the superior lord, and finally to do away with these functionaries altogether. The government of the towns thus passed over entirely into the hands of the aristocratic class, the Geschlechter, from whom alone were chosen the town-council (Schöffenrath, Rath), at the head of which stood the Bürgermeister or mayor. But meanwhile the lower classes of citizens, the industrial population, had been increasing in prosperity and importance. They were divided, according to their callings, into guilds (Zünfte, Innungen, Gilden), which not only organized industrial production, but developed into compact associations for mutual protection and the representation of common interests. They also early attained a considerable military significance, the common citizens all receiving training for military service under the banner of their special guild and the command of their own guildmaster. Thus the guilds not only succeeded in course of time in winning for their members the full rights of citizens, with eligibility to some offices, but in not a few towns they reversed the old order of things, driving out the patricians and substituting for their aristocratic rule a democratic form of municipal government, which brought the chief power into their own hands. In many cases a time of reaction followed, and the patricians were reinstated. The final result, however, was most commonly a mixed constitution, assuring to the members of the guilds a participation in magisterial and executive functions, but still leaving the larger share in the town government to the patricians, who had been taught by experience to regard their position as a matter less of pure privilege and absolute right, than of public responsibility.

It may interest the reader to know that the original of Thasso, the „, stumme Rathsherr," was a dog belonging to the author himself, who amused and plagued himself with his “education,” and found in their common adventures the suggestion of the humorous element in the following story, and its “moral.”

a

Erstes Soapitel.

PAGE 3

Line 3: Hunde mitzubringen. mit, 'with,' is in German not only a preposition, but also an adverb and separable prefix. As such it may be regarded as equivalent to a prep. with its object understood, and is often used where we must supply an obj. with the English prep., or where, as only expressing what is sufficiently indicated by the context, or what is unessential, it may be left untranslated. The unexpressed obj. is often a personal or reflexive pronoun, easily supplied from the context; so here mitbringen=mit sich bringen, to bring [with one]"; p. 14, 17, mitnehmen=mit sich nehmen, to take with him. Very often, however, it is quite general, and mit simply means, along with’[the] others, denoting participation or companionship, e.g. Waren Sie auch mit dabei? Were you there too? Haben Sie mitgetanzt? Did you (lit., join in the dancing) dance? cf. 47, 13; 107, 28. So in composition with substantives and adjectives, Mitbürger (19, 13), a fellow-citizen; cf. 87, 22, n.; 97, 6, &c.— Rathssigung (Sißung, sitting?, session), Reichsstadt, see Introduction above.

4. nicht gerade, or (giving more emphasis to the negation) gerade nicht, not just, not exactly. So 42, 14, gerade fein Unglück. For gerade in other applications of the same meaning, cf. 12, 19, n.; 101, 31, n.

5. Nun geschah es doch einmal. (a) Most of the numerous usages of the important and somewhat difficult particle doch may be explained under the general form of an antithesis or contrast, the first member of which is in form concessive, while the second, the one containing the particle, is adversative; the latter is insisted on, notwithstanding some real or seeming contradiction of or contrariety with the former, or expresses a restriction of or set-off against it, “Though, this being so, even if..., yet, for all that, in spite of that, on the other hand....' (It may be noted

1 Square brackets [ ] indicate a double reading, according as the letters or words enclosed in the brackets are read or omitted. Thus the above indicates that the preceding German expression will be translated according to requirement by, 'to bring with one,' or simply, 'to bring.'

2 Clarendon type is used (after the example of Whitney's Dictionary) to indicate an etymological connection between the English and the German word. The student will easily distinguish where the English cognate is given for the sake of the etymology only, not to interpret the meaning of the German word.

« PreviousContinue »