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Of Verbs in General.
Q. WHAT are Verbs?
A. They are words which ferve to exprefs either the being or Condition of their Subjects; as Etre, to Be; Refer, to Stand; or the actions corporeal and mental which they do; as Parler, to Speak; Penfer, to think; &c.
Q. How many farts of Verbs are there?
A. There are, generally fpeaking, but two forts; viz. The Perfonal and the Imperfonal,
Q: What is a Perfonal Verb?
A. It is a Verb that can be conjugated with three Perfonal Pronouns in each number; as Je parle, I speak; tu parles, thou fpeakeft; il parle, he speaks; &c.
Q. What is an Imperfonal Verb?
A. It is a Verb that can only be conjugated in the third Perfon of the Singular Number; as il pleut, it rains; il pleuvoit, it did rain; il plut, it rained; &c. Q. How are verbs diftinguished with respect to their use and BR ) fignification?. A. By fix different denominations, of which it will be fufficient for our prefent purpose, to mention the two following; viz. The Auxiliary and Active Verbs*, Q. What are the Auxiliary Verbs?
A. They are a kind of Verbs which, being perfixed to the Participle of other Verbs, help to convey the meaning of fuch actions or conditions as cannot be expreffed by Yingle words in modern Languages, as J'ai donné, I have given; Je fuis blame, I am blamed; &c. There are but two of them; viz. Avoir, to Have; Etre, to Be.
* The name and ufe of the other kinds of Verbs may be known, if required, by referring to The Practical Frensh Grammar; p. 92.
Q. What are Active Verbs?
A. They are Verbs that exprefs an action that paffes from an
Q. What grammatical Accidents are there in French Verbs?
A. The due diftribution of the feveral inflections of a Verb,
Q. What are the peculiar marks of each Conjugation ? A. The first ends in er, as Donner, to Give-The fecond in ir, as Finir, to Finish-The third in oir, as Recevoir; to Receive-The fourth in re, as Rendre, to Restore. But as fome Verbs vary in their inflections, they are diftinguished into Regular and Irregular Verbs. Q. What is fignified by Moods?
A. They are divers diftinctions that are made in the manner of ufing Verbs, in order to exprefs the different circumftances of Actions, Conditions, or Senfations,
How many Moods are there in Verbs?
A. Four, which are called the Infinitive, Indicative, Subjunctive, and Imperative.
Q. What is meant by Tenfes?
A. They are the Divifions of the Moods, which serve to indicate, by various endings, the time in which fomething is, was, or fhall be done; and are therefore called Prefent, Imperfect, Preterite, and Future Tenfes. Q. What are Perfons in Verbs?
A. Those inflections that are adapted to their respective Perfonal Pronouns; there are three in each Number, as may be feen in the following Conjugations.
CONJUGAISON du Verbe AVOIR. (3 ir.)
S. 1. J'ai
P. Nous avions,
Tu eus, Il eut,
P. Nous eumes,
S. J'aurai, Tu auras, Il aura,
I have; thou haft: he or she has.
P. Nous aurons,
we had; you had; they bad.j
fhall or will have;
Composé du Prés.
Comp. du Prét.
we shall have; you shall have:
they fhall have. 4. rendu,
Comp. du Future.
The capital Letters S. P. which are placed before and at the beginning of the fubdivifions of the Tenfes, denote their refpective Singular and Plural Numbers. The figures 1. 2. 3. in the first column, indicate the three different Perfons of each Number; thofe of the fecond column, viz. 1. 2. 3. 4. ferve to point out the particular conjugation of those Verbs to which the adjoined Participles belong; for donné comes from Donner, &c. fee p. 120.