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EDINBURGH:
THOMAS LAURIE, 38 COCKBURN STREET.
SIMPKIN, MARSHALL AND CO., LONDON.

1866.

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PREFACE.

The distinctive features of this English Grammar are :

1. It aims at greater simplicity of language and clearness explanation than are usual in works of its kind.

2. It presents the Essentials of English Grammar clearly and fully ; but is not encumbered with specimens of bad English to be corrected, or any similar exercises of questionable value.

3. Numerous Notes, containing illustrative and collateral matter, are interspersed in smaller type among the text, instead of being placed at the foot of the page, where pupils are apt to disregard them.

4. The Analysis of Sentences has not been dwelt on with a needless elaboration, which serves only to confuse and repel the young student. In the opinion of the author this branch of the subject—like another important one which he has omitted altogether—viz., the Derivation of Words—is best dealt with in a separate treatise.

5. The different Sections upon the Parts of Speech close with a concise Order of Parsing, to which are appended Examples, Exercises, and the appropriate Rules of Construction. In these days of Competitive Examination the value of constant practice in writing out Parsing and Analysis clearly and fully on a fixed plan cannot be too strongly insisted on.

If Parsing be confused, it is very likely to be inaccurate and incomplete. The short Exercises, which are given, can easily be supplemented by passages from any English author a pupil may be reading in class.

6. Throughout, it brings the grammatical forms of AngloSaxon into close comparison with those of Modern English, for the purpose both of illustrating the growth of the latter, and of giving a student some idea of the structure of the parent-tongue. The author hopes that the glimpses into the History of English Grammar, which are thus afforded, may be regarded as giving some freshness to the treatment of a subject on which so many others have written.

7. It closes with a Sketch of the History of the English Language, sufficiently full for all purposes of School-work. Such an Outline forms a natural and useful pendant to a book, which aims at bringing the historical aspect of English Grammar into stronger prominence than it usually receives.

April 1866.

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