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duced, accompanied with adjuncts of its own, and the subject is repeated by the relative pronoun which : it now becomes a compounded sentence, made up of two simple sentences, one of which is inserted in the middle of the other ; it must, therefore, be distinguished into its component parts by a point placed on each side of the additional sentence. . . In every sentence, therefore, as many subjects, or as many finite verbs, as there are, either expressed or implied, so many distinctions there may be : as, My hopes, fears, joys, pains, all centre in you. The case is the same when several adjuncts affect the subject of the verb: as, A good, wise, learned man is an ornament to the commonwealth; or when seyeral adverbs, or adverbial circumstances affect the verb: as, He behaved himself modestly, prudently, virtuously. For as many such adjuncts as there are, so many several members does the sentence contain ; and these are to be distinguished from each other, as much as several subjects or finite verbs. The reason of this is, that as many subjects, finite verbs, or adjuncts as there are in a sentence, so many distinct sentences are actually implied ; as the first example is equivalent to, My hopes all centre in you, my fears all centre in you, &c. The second example is equivalent to, A good man is an ornament to the commonwealth, a wise man is an ornament to the commonwealth, &c. The third example is equivalent to, He behaved himself modestly, he behaved himself prudently, &c.; and these implied sentences are all to be distinguished by a comma., ...

The exception to this rule is, where these subjects or adjuncts are united by a conjunction : as, The imagination and the judgment do not always agree ; and, A man never becomes learned without studying constantly and methodically. In these cases the comma between the subjects and adjuncts is omitted.

There are some other kinds of sentences, which, though seemingly simple, are nevertheless of the compound kind, and really contain several subjects, verbs or adjuncts. Thus in the sentences containing what is called the ablative absolute : as, Physicians, the disease once discovered, think the cure half wrought ; where the words disease once discovered, are equivalent to, when the cause of the disease is discovered. So in those sentences where nouns are added by apposition : as, The Scots, a hardy people, endured it all. So also in those where vocative cases occur : as, This, my friend, you must allow me. The first of these examples is equivalent to, The Scots endured it all, and The Scots, who are a hardy people, endured it all : and the last to, This you must allow me, and this my friend must allow, me. .

. When a sentence can be divided into two or morë members, which members are again divisible - into members more simple, the former are to be separated by a semicolon.


But as this passion for admiration, when it works according to reason, improves the beautiful part of our species in every thing that is laudable ; so nothing is more destructive to them, when it is governed by vanity and folly.

When a sentence can be divided into two parts, each of which parts are again divisible by semicolons, the former are to be separated by a colon.


As we cannot discern the shadow moving along the dial. plate, so the advances we make in knowledge are only perceived by the distance gone over.

. Here the two members, being both simple, are only separated by a comma. . .

As we perceive the shadow to have moved, but did not perceive it moving ; so our advances in learning, as they consist of such minute steps, are only perceivable by the distance.

Here the sentence being divided into two equal parts, and those compounded, since they include others, we separate the former by a semicolon, and the latter by commas.

As we perceive the shadow to have moved along the dial, but did not perceive it moving ; and it appears that the grass has grown, though nobody ever saw it grow ; so the advances we make in knowledge, as they consist of such minute steps, are only perceivable by the distance.

Here the advancement in knowledge is compared to the motion of a shadow, and the growth of grass ; which comparison divides the sentence into two principal parts : but since what is said of the move. ment of the shadow, and of the growth of grass, likewise contains two simple members, they are to be separated by a semicolon ; consequently, a higher pointing is required, to separate them from the other part of the sentence, which they are opposed to : and this is a colon.

When a member of a sentence forms complete sense, and does not excite expectation of what follows ; though it consist but of a simple member, it may be marked with a colon,


The discourse consisted of two parts: in the first was shown the necessity of fighting ; in the second, the advantages that would arise from it.

The Augustan age was so eminent for good poets, that they have served as models to all others : yet it did not produce a. ny good tragic poets.

When a sentence is so far perfectly finished, as not to be connected in construction with the following sentence, it is marked with a period.

This is the most concise and comprehensive view I could possibly collect from the several authors, who have written on this subject. But it may be observed, that these rules, though sufficient to prevent confusion in writing, are very inadequate to the purposes of just and accurate pronouncing ; as it is certain that a just, a forcible, and easy pronunciation, will oblige a judicious reader to pause much more frequently, than the most correct and accurate writ. ers or printers give him leave : but I must again observe, that when I contend for the propriety, and even necessity, of pausing, where we find no points in writing or printing, I do not mean to disturb the present practice of punctuation : I wish only to afford such aids to pronunciation as are actually made use of by the best readers and speakers, and such as we must use in reading and speaking in publick, if we would wish to pronounce with justness, energy, and ease.

An Introduction to the Theory of Rhetorical Punc


Dr. Lowth has, with great plainness and precisa ion, drawn the line which bounds the use of the comma upon paper, by telling us, that every simple sentence, or that sentence which has but ore subject and one finite verb, cannot have any of its alijuncts, or imperfect phrases, separated by a point. This he illustrates by a sentence, where the subject and the verb are accompanied by as many adjuncts as they commonly are, but no provision is made for such phrases as extend to twice the length, and yet continue perfectly simple.--The passion for praise' produces excellent effects in women of sense, is a sena tence of so moderate a size, as may be pronounced even with solemnity and energy, by most people, with out once taking breath ; but if we amplify these adjuncts that accompany the nominative case and the verb in such a manner as is frequently to be met with, at least in incorrect composition, we shall find it im. possible to pronounce the sentence with force and ease, without some interval for respiration ;---for instance, if we had the following sentence to read--A violent passion for universal admiration produces the most ridiculous circumstances in the general behaviour of women of the most excellent understandings. If, I say, we had this sentence to read, how could we possibly pronounce it with force and ease, without once fetching breath ?--and yet, according to the strictest laws of grammar, no pause is to be admitted ; for this latter sentence, though almost three times as long, is as perfectly simple as the former. :

The necessity of taking breath, in some of these longer simple sentences, has obliged the most ac

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