Practical Exercises in English
Huber Gray Buehler
Part 2 out of 4
THEY, THEM, THEMSELVES.
1. ---- and their children have left town.
2. We shall soon be as poor as ----.
3. Yes, it was ----.
4. I do not know whether the Macdonalds are Scotch or Irish but I thought
the Scotch family alluded to might be ----.
5. The mischievous boys you speak of could not have been ---- for ---- were
WHO, WHOM, WHOEVER, WHOMEVER.
1. ---- are you going to give that to?
2. ---- do men say that I am?
3. ---- do men think me to be?
4. ---- am I supposed to be?
5. ---- do you think will be elected?
6. ---- do you think they will select?
7. I do not know ---- to compare him to.
8. Tell me in sadness ---- is she you love?
9. ---- are you going to call on next?
10. How can we tell ---- to trust?
11. ---- is that for?
12. Elect ---- you like.
13. ---- did you see at the village?
14. ---- did you say went with you?
15. Do you know ---- you can get to take my trunk?
16. ---- were you talking to just now?
17. I do not know ---- you mean.
18. Do you remember ---- he married?
19. We will refer the question to ---- you may select as arbitrator.
20. ---- can this letter be from?
21. He is a man ---- I know is honest.
22. He is a man ---- I know to be honest.
23. ---- do you take me to be?
24. ---- did you expect to see?
25. Can't you remember ---- you gave it to?
26. I saw a man ---- I have no hesitation in saying was Julian H.
27. We like to be with those ---- we love and ---- we know love us, let
them be ---- they may.
28. ---- do you think it was that called?
29. He confided his plan to those ---- he thought were his friends.
30. He confided his plan to those ---- he thought he could trust.
31. We recommend only those ---- we think can pass the examinations, and
---- we know will do their best.
32. ---- do you think she looks like?
33. One letter was from an applicant ---- I afterwards learned had been
out of a position for two years.
34. ---- did you suppose it was?
35. Opposite him was a handsome man--John knew must be Kathleen's uncle.
36. A witness ---- the counsel for the defence expected would be present
was kept away by illness.
37. A witness ---- the counsel expected to be present was kept away.
38. Give it to ---- seems to need it most.
39. ---- does he think it could have been?
40. They have found the child ---- they thought was stolen.
41. Mr. Morton, ----, it is announced, the President has appointed minister
to France, has a house at Saratoga.
42. Miss C. married an old gentleman ---- they say is very wealthy.
43. The king offered to give his daughter in marriage to ---- would kill
the terrible monster.
44. ---- do you think I saw in Paris?
45. ---- are you going to vote for?
46. They left me ignorant as to ---- it was.
47. We were betrayed by those ---- we thought would die for us.
48. I don't know ---- to ask for.
49. I know ---- it is I serve.
50. The President has appointed Mr. L., ---- he thinks will show himself
well fitted for the position.
51. One member of the committee was absent ----, it was asserted by the
minority, would have voted in the negative.
52. The officer addressed the woman, ---- he plainly saw to be very much
out of place there.
53. ---- did he refer to, he (him) or I (me)?
54. Ariel was a spirit ---- a certain witch had shut up in a tree.
55. If she did not take after Anne, ---- did she take after?
PRONOUNS BEFORE VERBAL NOUNS.--Grammarians distinguish three kinds
of words formed from verbs by the adding of "-ing."
1. "We found Katharine _singing_ a merry song." In this sentence
"singing"--equivalent to "who was singing"--describes Katharine, and is
therefore used as an adjective; but it also partakes of the nature of a
verb, for it has a direct object, "song." Such words, partaking of the
nature of both adjective and verb, are called PARTICIPLES.
2. "Blithely _singing_ pretty songs keeps one's spirits up."
Here "singing" is a noun, the subject of the sentence; yet it has a direct
object, "songs," and is modified by the adverb "blithely." Such words,
partaking of the nature of both noun and verb, are called GERUNDS.
A noun or a pronoun used before a gerund to denote the subject of the
action should be put in the possessive case. The reason for this becomes
evident if, in the sentence "Do you remember _Katharine (Katharine's)
singing?"_ we substitute for the noun "singing" another noun, "song;"
thus, "Do you remember _Katharine (Katharine's) song?"_ The direct object
of "remember" is "singing," which is described by the possessive
3. "Katharine's blithe _singing_ of merry songs helps to make home happy."
Here, too, "singing" is a noun; but now its verbal character has
disappeared, for it is modified by an adjective "blithe," and instead of a
direct object we have the prepositional phrase "of merry songs." Such
words derived from verbs are ABSTRACT VERBAL NOUNS.
When a word in "-ing" is modified by "the" or some other adjective, it is
an abstract verbal noun, and cannot have an object. Conversely, if it, is
followed by "of" and a noun instead of by a direct object, it should be
modified by "the" or some other adjective.
 In the first of these sentences the pronoun to be supplied is the
subject of "is honest," and "I know" is parenthetical. In the second
sentence, the pronoun to be supplied is the subject of "to be honest,"
which is the complement of "I know."
 "Foundations," pp. 62-64.
_Which of the following forms is preferable? Give the reason:_--
1. I heard of him (his) coming home.
2. What do you think of Marguerite (Marguerite's) studying Latin?
3. Have you any doubt of Kathleen (Kathleen's) being happy?
4. We saw the lady (lady's) crossing the street.
5. Do you remember my (me) speaking to you about your penmanship?
6. We saw the old miser (miser's) sitting alone in front of his hut.
7. What is the good of your (you) going now?
8. There was no doubt of him (his) being promoted.
9. Trust to me (my) being on time.
10. Are you surprised at it (its) being him (he)?
11. No doubt his example will be followed by others, with the consequence
of the country (country's) being overrun by tramps.
12. Look at him (his) reading a book.
13. The delay was caused by us (our) missing the train.
14. I found him (his) reading Idyls of the King.
15. This may lead to Harry (Harry's) getting a position.
16. We did not see the house (house's) burning.
17. You (your) writing the letter so neatly secured for you the position.
18. The man's (man) breaking jail is evidence of his guilt.
19. What do you think about this cloth (cloth's) wearing well?
20. We must insist upon every man (man's) doing his duty.
21. Mr. R.'s (Mr. R.) having come to town will soon be known.
22. There is prospect of the Senate (Senate's) passing the tariff bill.
23. What use is there in a man (man's) swearing?
24. His parents are opposed to him (his) playing football.
25. No one ever saw fat men (men's) heading a riot.
26. A fierce struggle ensued, ending in the intruder (intruder's) being
27. Professor C. relies on us (our) passing our examinations.
28. I felt my heart (heart's) beating faster.
29. There is no use in me (my) trying to learn Hebrew.
30. I enjoy nothing more than the sight of a yacht (yacht's) sailing in a
31. Brown (Brown's) being a manufacturer prevented his election.
_Distinguish in meaning between the following sentences:_--
1. The man (man's) asking to be allowed to vote started a quarrel.
2. Did you see him (his) riding?
3. I had to laugh at John (John's) riding a bicycle.
4. Think of me (my) eating frogs' legs.
5. Much depends on the teacher (teacher's) correcting the papers.
6. Did you watch him (his) entering the room?
7. Did you hear Ruth (Ruth's) singing?
8. No one ever heard of that man (man's) running for office.
_Explain the faults in the following sentences and correct them in several
1. He read the parable about the sowing the seed.
2. Good writing depends on reading of good books.
3. Youth is the time for the forming the character.
4. "In building of chaises, I tell you what,
There is always somewhere a weakest spot."
5. He would not aid me so much as by the lifting a hand.
6. Groaning of prisoners and clanking of chains were heard.
7. By the obtaining wisdom you will command esteem.
8. By reading of good books his style was improved.
9. The taking things by force is apt to make trouble.
10. A more careful guarding the prisoners would have prevented
CHOICE OF RELATIVE PRONOUNS.--_Who_ is now used only of persons;
_which_, of things; _that_, of either persons or things. As a rule,
euphony decides between _who_ or _which_ and _that_.
"_Who_ is used chiefly of persons (though also often of the higher
animals), _which_ almost only of animals and things (in old English also
of persons), and _that_ indifferently of either, except after a
preposition, where only _who_ [_whom_] or _which_ can stand. Some recent
authorities teach that only _that_ should be used when the relative clause
is limiting or defining: as, the man _that_ runs fastest wins the race;
but _who_ or _which_ when it is descriptive or co-ordinating: as, this
man, _who_ ran fastest, won the race; but, though present usage is perhaps
tending in the direction of such a distinction, it neither has been nor is
a rule of English speech, nor is it likely to become one, especially on
account of the impossibility of setting _that_ after a preposition; for to
turn all relative clauses into the form 'the house _that_ Jack lived _in_'
(instead of 'the house _in which_ Jack lived') would be intolerable. In
good punctuation the defining relative is distinguished (as in the
examples above) by never taking a comma before it, whether it be _who_ or
_which_ or _that_. Wherever _that_ could be properly used, but only there,
the relative may be, and very often is, omitted altogether; thus, the
house Jack built or lived in; the man he built it for."
When the antecedent includes both persons and things,
_that_ is preferable to _who_ or _which_.
"When the antecedent is a neuter noun not personified, a writer should
prefer _of which_ to _whose_, unless euphony requires the latter."
_What_, as a relative pronoun, is equivalent to "that which." It is never
used with an antecedent, since the antecedent is included in the meaning
of the word.
The word _as_ is a relative pronoun only after "such" or "same." After
"such" the proper relative is "as"; after "same" it is "as" or "that."
"_Same as_ usually expresses identity of kind, _same that_ absolute
identity, except in contracted sentences where _same as_ is alone found:
cf. 'he uses the same books _as_ you do,' 'he uses the same books _that_
you do,' he uses the same books as you.'"
 "Foundations," pp. 60, 65, 67-69.
 The Century Dictionary.
 "Foundations," p. 68.
 Murray's Dictionary.
_Insert the proper relative pronoun in the blanks in the following
sentences, giving the reason for your choice:--_
1. Man is the only animal ---- can talk.
2. There are many persons ----, though they be starving, will not beg.
3. This is the malt ---- lay in the house ---- Jack built.
4. I will have no such son-in-law ---- thinks himself better than
5. Tennyson, ---- was the foremost poet of England, died in 1892.
6. Time ---- is lost is never found again.
7. There are many ---- saw him fall.
8. The soldiers and cannon ---- you saw belong to the French army.
9. Who ---- hears Professor C. read the court scene from "Pick wick" does
not go away delighted?
10. She is the same girl since her marriage ---- she was before it.
11. The dog dropped the bone, ---- then fell into the water.
12. He ---- does all ---- he can does all ---- can be expected.
13. Her hair, ---- was dark brown, was gathered in a Grecian knot.
14. Tears, such ---- angels weep, burst forth.
15. I have a water spaniel, ---- follows me everywhere.
16. The horse ---- ran away with Harry belonged to Mr. H.
17. Such ---- I have I give you.
18. This is the same man ---- I spoke of.
19. The diamond, ---- is so highly prized, is pure carbon, ---- in the
form of charcoal is familiar to all.
20. All the men and horses ---- were on the transports were drowned when
the vessels sank.
21. The murdered innocents at Bethlehem were martyrs ---- died for a king
---- they had never seen.
22. What pleased me most, and ---- has been most frequently mentioned
by visitors to the fair, was the beauty of the buildings.
23. I trusted to my dog, ---- knew the way better than I did.
24. Dr. A.'s report shows the same record of efficiency ---- has always
characterized his conduct.
25. Shakespeare was the greatest poet ---- the English race has produced.
26. He spends all ---- he earns.
27. The review of the National Guard of Pennsylvania by Sheridan was the
largest military display ---- I have seen.
28. Was it you or the wind ---- made those noises?
29. We have invited the same girls ---- were here yesterday.
30. It was the cat, not I or the wind, ---- frightened you.
31. The dog ---- my brother gave me ran away.
32. Do you know that man ---- is just entering the car?
33. Such eloquence ---- was heard in the Senate in those days!
34. He held the same political opinions ---- his illustrious friend.
35. "Nature ever faithful is
To such ---- trust her faithfulness."
36. Is this a dagger ---- I see before me?
37. We saw the men and arms ---- were captured.
EITHER or ANY ONE, NEITHER or NO ONE.--_Either_ means
"one of the two"; _neither_, "no one of the two." When more than two
persons or things are spoken of, "any one" is preferable to "either," and
"no one" to "neither."
 See note, p. 45.
 "Foundations," pp. 69-70.
_Insert the proper word or words ("either," "neither," "any one," "no
one") in each blank in the following sentences:--_
1. Only three persons saw the fight, and ---- of them would testify.
2. Has ---- of you two gentlemen a fountain-pen?
3. I defy any candid and clear thinker to deny in the name of
inductive science ---- of these six propositions.
4. When two persons disagree, it is not likely that ---- is altogether
5. Has ---- of you who have just come from the ball-field seen Julian?
6. I have several histories of France, ---- of which will give you the
7. Here come Harry and Arthur; ---- will go to get it for you.
8. Give it to the six successful students or to ---- of them.
EACH or ALL.--_Each_ denotes every one of any number taken
one by one; _all_ denotes the entire number taken together.
 "Foundations," p. 70.
_Insert the proper word ("each," "all") in each blank:--_
1. ---- gave me his (their) hand(s).
2. ---- of the workmen received two dollars a day.
3. ---- of the children has (have) his (their) peculiar traits.
4. ---- of the members is (are) entitled to a vote.
5. He gave an apple to ---- of us.
6. Did your father bring the boat to Harry? No, he brought it to ---- of
7. ---- of them did his (their) duty.
CHANGE OF PRONOUN.--In referring to the same person or thing a
writer should not change from one pronoun to another.
The possessive of "one" is "one's" (not "his"), except in such
expressions as "every one," "no one," "many a one." The reflexive is
It is a common but serious fault to begin to write in the third person,
and then to change to the first or second.
 Ibid., pp. 72-74.
_Fill the blanks with the proper pronouns:--_
1. The Second Regiment of the National Guard, ---- was sent to Pittsburg
during the strike, and ---- is now in camp at Gettysburg, has six
2. John started to school last Monday; we wish ---- success.
3. Proud damsel, ---- shalt be proudly met. I withdraw my pretensions
to ---- hand until I return from the war.
4. As ---- hast said, ---- lands are not endangered. But hear me before I
5. The cat was crouching on the piazza and we were watching ----.
Suddenly ---- tail twitched nervously and ---- prepared to spring.
6. "Ere you remark another's sin,
Bid ---- conscience look within."
7. At first one is likely to wonder where the boats are, since on entering
the grove ---- is (are) able to see only a small cabin.
8. Dost ---- talk of revenge? ---- conscience, it seems, has grown dull.
9. As a Christian ---- art obliged to forgive ---- enemy.
10. Did you never bear false witness against ---- neighbor?
11. The shepherd ran after a sheep and caught ---- just as ---- was
jumping over a hedge.
12. The hen gathered ---- brood under ---- wing.
13. This is a book which I have never read, but one ---- is recommended by
1. Write the following note in clear and correct form, using the
"Mr. Smith presents his compliments to Mr. Jones, and finds he has a cap
which isn't mine. So, if you have a cap which isn't his, no doubt they are
2. Write a formal note in the third person, asking an acquaintance to dine
with you at a certain hour in order that you may consult with him about
some matter of importance.
3. Write a note in the third person accepting or declining this
4. Write a formal note in the third person to some gentleman to
whom you have a letter of introduction, asking when it will be
convenient to have you call.
5. Write a notice in the third person offering a reward for the recovery
of a lost article.
SINGULAR or PLURAL PRONOUNS.--The rule that a pronoun should
be in the same number as its antecedent is violated most commonly in
connection with such expressions as "any one," "each," "either," "every,"
"man after man," "neither," "nobody." Grammatically such expressions are
"He" ("his," "him") may stand for mankind in general and include women as
well as men.
 Quoted in "Foundations," p. 74.
 "Foundations," pp. 75-76.
_Fill the blanks with the proper pronouns:_--
1. Many a brave man met ---- death in the war.
2. Has everybody finished ---- exercise?
3. If any one has not finished let ---- hold up ---- hand.
4. It is true that this is a free country; but that does not mean that
every one may do as ---- please (pleases).
5. Either John or Harry will let you look on ---- book.
6. Let each take ---- turn.
7. If anybody but John had come, we would not have admitted ----.
8. Any one who wishes may have a ribbon to wear in ---- button-hole.
9. Neither Bois-Guilbert nor Front de Boeuf found himself (them selves) a
match for the unknown knight who challenged ----.
10. Every kind of animal has ---- own proper food.
11. Not an officer, not a private escaped getting ---- clothes wet.
12. The Senate has (have) instructed ---- conferees to yield to the demand
of the conferees of the House of Representatives.
13. Everybody has possessions of some kind which ---- prize (prizes)
14. It is a shame that each of the men, when ---- draw (draws) ---- pay,
take (takes) it to the tavern.
15. Will either of you gentlemen lend me ---- (third person) pencil?
16. Two men saw the deed; but neither would tell what ---- saw.
17. Every one should be careful of the feelings of those around ----.
18. Each of the pupils has (have) ---- own dictionary.
19. Nobody went out of ---- way to make her feel at home.
20. Neither Charles nor his brother ate ---- breakfast this morning.
21. Everybody goes to bed when ---- please (pleases).
22. The committee has handed in ---- report.
23. The senior class has elected ---- class-day speakers.
24. If any one wishes to see me let ---- call at my office.
25. Either Florence or Grace will lend you ---- fan.
26. Every one must judge of ---- own feelings.
27. Whoever loves ---- school should do ---- best to elevate the school
28. A person who is rude in ---- table manners will be disliked.
29. Nobody in ---- senses ever thinks of doing that.
30. Each one as before will chase ---- favorite phantom.
31. She laughs like one out of ---- mind.
32. Everybody was on deck amusing ----self (selves) as best ---- could.
33. No one should marry unless ---- has (have) the means of supporting ----
self (selves) and ---- family.
34. Probably everybody is eloquent at least once in ---- life.
35. Everybody rises early and goes on deck, where ---- inhale (inhales) the
fresh salt air.
36. Bach of the gentlemen offered ---- assistance.
37. Nobody but a fool would have left ---- money in such a place.
38. Anybody wishing to sell ---- bicycle will please call at No. 267.
39. Franklin and Collins started off together, each with very little money
in ---- pockets.
40. In the time of Franklin's great-great-grandfather, if a person was
caught using an English Bible ---- was (were) treated as a heretic.
41. Nobody should praise ----self (selves).
42. Neither the merchant nor the lawyer made ----self (selves) rich.
43. Every man and every boy received ---- wages.
44. When the carnival comes off everybody who owns a boat, or who can
borrow one, decorates it as best ---- can with lanterns and trimmings.
45. Every cowboy carries a pistol and knows how to use it very quickly;
---- also has (have) a knife stuck in ---- belt, in the use of which
---- is (are) very expert.
46. Everybody's heart is open, you know, when ---- has (have) recently
escaped from severe pain.
OMITTED PRONOUNS.--The omission of necessary pronouns--an
omission especially common in business letters--cannot be justified on
the ground of brevity.
 "Foundations," pp. 77, 78.
_Insert the omitted pronouns in_--
1. After twenty-two years' experience announce the opening of my new
store. Hope to serve the public better by presenting new ideas. Would
2. Have received manuscript, but not had time to examine. Will take up in
a few days. If good, will publish.
3. Dr. Jones and wife occupy the front room.
4. My inability to get employment, and destitute condition, depressed me.
5. She didn't trouble to make any excuse to her husband.
6. Accept thanks for lovely present. Hope we may have the pleasure of
using together in the near future.
REDUNDANT PRONOUNS.--A vulgarism not often seen in writing, but
common in conversation, consists in the use of an unnecessary pronoun
after the subject of a sentence. Thus,
_Teacher_: Who was Benjamin Franklin?
_Pupil_: Benjamin Franklin, _he_ was a great American philosopher and
CORRECT and INCORRECT FORMS.--It is not enough to learn by
heart the "principal parts" of a verb; the habit of using them correctly
should be acquired. The following verb-forms are often misused:--
_Present. Past Indicative. Past Participle._
awake (intransitive) awoke awaked
begin began begun
beseech besought besought
blow blew blown
bid ("to order," "to greet") bAefde bidden or bid
bid (at auction) bid bidden or bid
break broke broken
burst burst burst
choose chose chosen
come came come
dive dived dived
do did done
drive drove driven
eat ate eaten
flee fled fled
fly flew flown
freeze froze frozen
forget forgot forgotten
get got got
go went gone
hang hung, hanged hung, hanged
lay ("to cause to lie") laid laid
lie ("to recline") lay lain
plead pleaded pleaded
prove proved proved
ride rode ridden
rise (intransitive) rose risen
raise (transitive) raised raised
run ran run
see saw seen
set ("to put"; of the sun, set set
moon, etc., "to sink")
sit sat sat
shake shook shaken
shoe shod shod
show showed shown
speak spoke spoken
slay slew slain
steal stole stolen
take took taken
throw threw thrown
wake (transitive) woke waked
write wrote written
In using the verbs _drink, ring, shrink, sing, sink, spring, swim,_ it
seems better to confine the forms in "a" to the preterite tense, and the
forms in "u" to the past participle: as, "The bell _rang_ five minutes
ago"; "Yes, the bell has _rung_."
The following forms also should be distinguished:--
_Present. Past. Participle._
alight ("to get down from," alighted alighted
light ("to ignite," lighted lighted
"to shed light on")
light ("to settle down as lighted or lit lighted or lit
a bird from flight," or
"to come upon by chance")
 "Foundations," pp.78-81, 91-93.
 "Broke," as a form of the past participle, is still found in verse.
 "Gotten" is an old form not sanctioned by the best modern usage.
 "Clothes are 'hung' on the line; men are 'hanged' on the
gallows."--"Foundations," p. 79.
 "'Proven' is borrowed from the Scotch legal dialect."--"Foundations,"
 Ibid., p. 91.
 "'Lighted' seems preferable to 'lit'; but 'lit' is used by some
writers of reputation."--Ibid., p. 92.
_Change the italicized verbs in these sentences to the past tense_
1. The guests _begin_ to go home.
2. I _beseech_ you to hear me.
3. The wind _blows_ furiously.
4. The steward _bids_ me say that supper is ready.
5. Mr. O. _bids_ forty-two dollars for the picture.
6. George _dives_ better than any other boy in the crowd.
7. I _do_ it myself.
8. They _eat_ their supper as if they were half starved..
9. The enemy _flee_ before us.
10. The door _flies_ open.
11. The wild goose _flies_ southward in the autumn.
12. He _flees_ at the smell of powder.
13. The Susquehanna river _overflows_ its banks.
14. The workmen _lay_ the rails for the track with great care.
15. Obedient to the doctor's directions, she _lies_ down an hour
16. Our cat _lies_ on the rug by the hour watching for mice.
17. The cows _lie_ under the trees in the meadow.
18. Helen _comes_ in and _lays_ her coat on a chair.
19. The envoys _plead_ with Caesar earnestly.
20. Both short-stop and pitcher _run_ for the ball.
21. He _runs_ up to Mr. C. as if to strike him.
22. I _see_ two cannon and a company of infantry.
23. Harry _sees_ me coming.
24. The negro women _set_ their baskets on their heads.
25. They _sit_ in the third pew from the front.
26. Mr. N. always _shoes_ my pony.
27. The savages who _live_ on this island _slay_ their captives.
28. The catcher often _throws_ the ball to the second base.
29. The sun _wakes_ me early.
30. The bell _rings_ at seven o'clock.
31. The stag _drinks_ his fill.
32. She _sings_ sweetly.
33. Armed men _spring_ up on all sides.
34. Tom _swims_ very well indeed.
35. The vessel _sinks_ with all on board.
36. The colonel and his staff _alight_ in front of the general's tent.
37. He _lights_ the lamp with a splint.
38. On the trees a crested peacock _lights_.
_Change these sentences so that the italicized, verbs will be either in
the perfect tense or in the passive voice:--_
1. The sleeper _awakes_.
2. The Gauls _beseech_ Caesar to be merciful.
3. The wind _blows_ my papers off the table.
4. Ethel _broke_ her arm.
5. His wrongdoing _breaks_ my heart.
6. The pressure of the water _breaks_ the pipes.
7. They _choose_ Mr. W. to be their chairman.
8. The enemy _come_ in force.
9. The boys _dive_ three times.
10. John _is driving_ the cows out of the corn.
11. The boys _are eating_ their supper.
12. An absconding cashier _flees_ to Canada.
13. A robin _flies_ to the vines by my window.
14. The Ohio river _overflows_ its banks.
15. The water in my pitcher _froze_.
16. I _forget_ his name
17. He _gets_ along fairly well.
18. They _go_ by steamer.
19. The sheriff _hangs_ the condemned man.
20. The maid _hangs_ up my cloak.
21. I _lie_ on the couch twenty minutes to rest.
22. Tramps _lie_ by the road below the gate.
23. Boys _lay_ traps for hares.
24. They _lay_ burdens on me greater than I can bear.
25. They _plead_ their cause well.
26. This _proves_ the truth of my assertion.
27. He _rides_ alone from Litchfield to Waterbury
28. A mist _rises_ before my eye.
29. I _see_ the President often.
30. I _set_ the lamp on the table.
31. He _sits_ by the hour talking politics.
32. Rab _shakes_ the little dog by the neck.
33. He _is shoeing_ my horse.
34. This fact clearly _shows_ the prisoner's guilt.
35. He _speaks_ his declamation well.
36. They _slay_ their prisoners.
37. He _stole_ my watch.
38. Some one _takes_ my hat.
39. He _throws_ cold water on my plan.
40. He _writes_ home.
41. He _wakes_ me every night by his restlessness.
NOTE.--If the teacher thinks that the class needs more drill of this kind,
Exercises XXXVIII. and XXXIX. may be reversed, that is, the verbs in
XXXVIII. may be changed to perfect or passive forms; the verbs in XXXIX.
to the past tense. If this is done, some of the sentences will have to be
slightly recast. In the next exercise drill on the same forms is continued
in a different way.
_Insert the proper form in each of the blanks in the following
1. I--at six o'clock this morning; I have--at about the same time ever
since I came to school.
2. Lord Byron one morning--to find himself famous. A certain Mr. Peck--one
day last week to find that the _Nation_ had made him notorious.
3. A few nights ago Mr. Michael Dixon was--by a burglar in his bedroom.
4. He--me an hour before time.
5. Have you--your brother?
6. He--as I opened the door.
7. He had--his speech before we arrived.
8. The Senators--to ask him questions. Then he--to be confused.
9. When the Major passed us he--us good-morning very politely.
10. Father has for--us to go there.
11. Before the sunset gun was fired the bugler--a strain on his bugle.
12. The top-mast of the sloop was--away.
13. Did you hear that Waldo has--his leg?
14. The window was--by Jack.
15. When the South Sea bubble--, thousands of families were made poor.
16. The cannon was--by an overcharge of powder.
17. If they had--him, they would have--more wisely.
18. A better day for a drive could not have been--.
19. Harry--running up to me and asked me to lend him my cap.
20. The loon saw the flash of my gun and--.
21. It had--several times before.
22. I know he--it; for it could not have been--by any one else.
23. Ask him why he--it.
24. He was--out of town by his indignant neighbors.
25. This stake has been--in deep.
26. The scraps were--up by the dog.
27. The men have--their dinner.
FLEE, FLY, FLOW.
28. During the night the river had over--its banks.
29. Benedict Arnold was forced to--the country. He--to England.
30. The birds have--away.
31. The guilty man has--. He--with his family to Mexico.
32. Our meadow was over--during the freshet.
33. The yacht--like a bird before the wind.
34. The lotus-eaters watched the gleaming river as it--seaward.
35. It had--through the same channel hundreds of years.
36. The terrified savages--to the mountains.
37. They shall--from the wrath to come.
38. The plantations along the Mississippi are over--.
39. Once Sydney Smith, being asked his name by a servant, found to his
dismay that he had--his own name.
40. Maude is late; she must have--the time.
41. I thought my ears were--.
42. He would have--to death if he had not been found by the
St. Bernard dogs.
43. They have--home.
44. Whenever any milk was wanted it could be--from the magic pitcher.
45. Grace has--three seats for to-night.
46. Franklin asked the boy where he had--the bread.
47. The price of coal has--up since last year.
48. He would have--with us if he had been invited.
49. Judas, overwhelmed with remorse, went and,--himself.
50. In olden times in England a man was--for stealing a sheep.
51. Two men--under the hay-stack all yesterday morning. They must
have--there all night.
52.--down and rest.
53. He came in and--his books on his desk.
54. After he--down he remembered that he had left his pocket-book--ing
by the open window.
55. He played until he was so tired that he had to--down.
56. He has--himself at full length on the grass.
57. You had better--down for a while after dinner.
58. I have--down, and I feel rested.
59. I--down an hour ago to take a nap.
60. The scene of "The Lady of the Lake" is--in the lake region
61. The tired lambs--down to rest.
62. Darkness settled down while the soldiers--behind the breast-works.
63. Had you not better--down a while?
64. After they had been--ing silent for an hour, the command was given to
prepare for a march; afterward the men ---- down again and waited for
the next order.
65. When Romeo saw Juliet ---- ing in the casket, he ---- down by her side
and drank the poison. When Juliet awoke, seeing Romeo ---- ing beside
her dead, she took a sword which ---- near and killed herself.
66. He ---- tearfully to be set free, but his captors were firm.
67. Yesterday he ---- "not guilty."
68. It cannot be ---- that Mars is inhabited.
69. He thinks that the prisoner's innocence has been ----.
70. We had ---- only a short distance when rain began to fall.
71. Have you ever ---- on a bicycle?
72. She could not get her bread to ----.
73. The price of corn has ----.
74. I ---- so that I might look around.
75. The students ---- him upon their shoulders.
76. You look as if you had ---- all the way home.
77. He ---- up to me and asked what time it was.
78. He said some thief had taken his coat and had ---- away with it.
79. Charlie, who has just come in, says he ---- two suspicious looking men
near the barn.
80. Yes, I ---- him an hour ago.
81. That is the best dog I ever ----.
82. Please ---- still while I try to find her.
83. The old man was ----ting in his easy-chair.
84. He ---- out for Boston day before yesterday.
85. ---- down and talk awhile.
86. The sun ----s at six o'clock twice a year.
87. I ---- the basket on a rock while I went to the spring.
88. We ---- with our friends at the table for over an hour.
89. In which seat did you ----?
90. I am--ting in my study by the window.
91. The children are dreadfully sunburnt; yesterday they--in the sun on
the beach all the morning.
92. Just--down, till I call her.
93. Annie, I have--the pitcher on the table.
94. He has--there all the evening.
95. We were all--ting round the fire.
96. I had to--up all night.
97. The farmer after felling the tree found that it had fell (fallen) on
a--ting hen that had laid (lain) her eggs under its branches.
98. All the restraints of home had been--off long before.
99. John--the tree; Lida picked up the nuts.
100. After they had--off the dust, they entered the house.
101. Go, ask Mr. N. whether he has--the horses yet.
102. He says he--them an hour ago.
103. They have--their good intention.
104. Has Edward--you his yacht? Yes, he--it to me this morning.
105. English is--in many parts of the world.
106. After he had--a half-hour we had to leave.
107. David--Goliath with a pebble.
108. A brave man never boasts of having--his thousands.
109. He thinks the horse was--.
110. Some one has--my purse.
111. I found upon inquiry that I had mis--the house
112. Yesterday she--me home with her.
113. You look as if you had--root there.
114. He--the ball to me and I--it back.
115. The Governor's son was--from his pony this morning.
116. I think he should have--and told us.
117. He--for the book two days ago.
118. She has--for samples.
* * * * *
119. The toast was--with great enthusiasm.
120. Then they--to the health of the President.
121. He had once--sour wine and slept in the secret chamber at
122. The fire bell--twice last night. It had not--for two months before.
123. Has the last bell--?
124. The choir boys--the "Hallelujah Chorus" from "The Messiah." It seemed
to me that they had never--so well.
125. The steamer struck an iceberg and--with all on board.
126. They have--two wells, but have got (gotten) no water.
127. The grass--up like magic last night.
128. Homer describes a race of men who--from the gods.
129. I once--three-quarters of a mile without stopping.
130. Having--the river, the fugitives plunged into the forest.
_Illustrate by original sentences the proper use of the past indicative
and the past participle of each of the following verbs, thus: A swallow
FLEW into my room, but before I recovered from my surprise it had FLOWN
out again. Give to the sentences variety:_--
Awake, beat, begin, beseech, blow, bid (to order), bid (to offer), break,
burst, choose, come, dive, do, drive, eat, flee, fly, flow, forget,
freeze, get, go, hang, lay, lie (to recline), plead, prove, ride, rise,
run, see, set, sit, shake, shoe, show, speak, slay, steal, take, throw,
CONTRACTIONS.--Some writers hold that in careful writing
contracted forms should be avoided; but all are agreed that in
conversation some contractions, if correctly used, are natural and proper.
The conversation of a person who never said "can't" for "can not," "don't"
for "do not," or "doesn't" for "does not," would seem stiff. Care should,
however, be taken not to use plural contractions for singular, or singular
for plural. _Don't_ is a contraction of "do not," _doesn't_ of "does not."
The proper contraction of "is not" is _isn't;_ of "are not," _aren't.
Daresn't_, if used at all, should be used only when "dares not" might be
substituted. _Ain't_ is a gross vulgarism.
 "Foundations," pp. 81-82.
_Insert the proper contraction (doesn't, don't) in each of the blank
1. It--- seem possible.
2. The captain--- know what it is to be afraid.
3. John says he--- understand the problem on page 266.
4. Why--- she come?
5.--- it seem strange that they--- come?
6. Waldo--- improve in penmanship as fast as he should.
7. It--- look like pure water.
8. Why--- he answer?
9. The boy will fail, but he--- seem to care much.
MAY (MIGHT) or CAN (COULD).--_Can_ and _could_, which denote
"ability" or "possibility," are often wrongly used in the place of _may_
and _might_, which are the proper words to denote "permission."
 Ibid., pp. 82-83.
_Fill the blanks with the right words:_--
1. ---- I leave the room?
2. You ---- go to the concert, but I doubt whether you ---- get a seat.
3. ---- we by searching find out God?
4. ---- I have some more lemonade?
5. ---- I have another piece of cake?
6. ---- you tell me which is Mr. Ames's house?
7. Mother says I--invite the girls to tea.
8. A man who knows himself to be right ---- afford to await the judgment of
9. ---- I write at your desk?
10. You ---- come to see me whenever you ---- find time.
11. They asked whether they ---- have a holiday.
12. They were wondering whether they ---- be recognized in their disguises.
13. ---- I have the use of your sled?
14. ---- I trouble you to get me a glass of water?
WILL OR SHALL.--Some grammarians teach that the future tense of
"go" is: "I _shall_ or _will_ go," "You _shall_ or _will_ go," "He _shall_
or _will_ go," etc. The fact seems to be that there is only one form for
the future; the other form, often given as an alternative, expresses
something more than futurity, and is somewhat like a distinct mode.
A help to the proper use of _shall_ and _will_ is found in the original
meaning of the words. At first _shall_ and _will_ were notional verbs,
_shall_ meaning "to owe," "to be obliged," and _will_ meaning "to wish:"
as, "That faith I _shall_ (owe) to God." At present _shall_ and _will_
often retain some trace of their original meaning, _will_ implying a
reference to the will of the subject, and _shall_ implying obligation or
compulsion: as, "I _will_ follow him to the end;" "He _shall_ be brought
to justice;" sometimes they are mere auxiliaries, with no trace of their
original meaning: as, "It _will_ rain to-day;" "I _shall_ be glad."
 "Foundations," pp. 83-88.
 By "notional verb" is meant a verb that has some distinct idea or
notion of its own: as, "I _have_ a ball." Here "have" expresses the idea
of possession. In the sentence "I _have_ lost my ball," the word "have"
does not express a distinct idea; it only helps to form a tense of the
verb "lose": that is, it is not notional, but auxiliary.
For practical purposes the distinction between _shall_ and _will_ may be
exhibited as follows:--
I. IN INDEPENDENT SENTENCES.
_Simple Futurity. Volition,_
implying that the matter is within
the control of the speaker.
I (we) _shall_ \ I (we) _will_ \
you _will_ } go. you _shall_ } go.
he (they) _will_/ he (they) _shall_/
 Sometimes used in a courteous command to a subordinate officer.
 Also used in speaking of what is destined to take place, or of what
is willed by some ruling power.
II. IN DEPENDENT SENTENCES.
In noun clauses introduced by "that," expressed or understood, if the noun
clause and the principal clause have _different subjects,_ the distinction
between _shall_ and _will_ is the same as in independent sentences: as,
My sister says (that) Dorothy _will_ be glad to go with us. (Futurity; the
same as, "Dorothy _will_ be glad to go with us.")
My sister says (that) Dorothy _shall_ not be left behind. (Volition; the
same as, "Dorothy _shall_ not be left behind.")
In all other dependent clauses, _shall_ is in all persons the proper
auxiliary to express simple futurity; _will_ in all persons implies an
exercise of will on the part of the subject of the clause: as,
Dorothy says (that) she _shall_ (futurity) be able to go with us.
She says (that) she _will_ (volition) meet us at the corner.
If Bessie _will_ come (volition), we will try to make her visit pleasant.
When He _shall_ appear (futurity) we shall be like Him.
REMARK.--It is worthy of notice that in noun clauses introduced by
"that"--clauses which are really indirect quotations--the same auxiliary
is generally used that would be used were the quotation in the direct
form: as, "My sister says, 'Dorothy _will_ be glad to go with you,'" "My
sister says that Dorothy _will_ be glad to go with us;" "Dorothy says, 'I
_shall_ be glad to go with you,'" "Dorothy says that she _shall_ be glad
to go with us." This remark, however, is not an adequate statement of the
best usage, for it is not true of such sentences as 21, p. 76, and 8, 22,
III. IN QUESTIONS.
In _the first person_ "will" is never proper, except when it repeats a
question asked by another person. "Will I go?" would mean, "Is it my
intention to go?"--a useless question, since the speaker must know his own
will without asking.
In the _second and third persons_ the auxiliary which is expected in the
answer should be used.
Will you dine with me to-morrow? I will. (Volition.) Shall you be glad to
come? I shall. (Futurity.) Will your brother be there, too? He will.
WOULD OR SHOULD.--"_Should_ and _would_ follow the same rules as
_shall_ and _will_, but they have in addition certain meanings peculiarly
"_Should_ is sometimes used in its original sense of 'ought,' as in 'You
should not do that.'
"_Would_ is sometimes used to signify habitual action, as in 'The 'Squire
would sometimes fall asleep in the most pathetic part of my sermon;' and
to express a wish, as, 'Would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son,
 "Foundations," pp. 88-90.
 A.S. Hill: Principles of Rhetoric, revised edition, p 63.
_Distinguish in meaning between the following sentences:_--
1. I will (shall) meet you in the village.
2. I will (shall) be obeyed.
3. Will he come? Shall he come?
4. You will (shall) repent of this.
5. He will (shall) not see me.
6. You will (shall) have a new suit to-morrow.
7. Shall (will) you stay at home to-night?
8. We will (shall) not be left alone.
9. She will (shall) have a reward if she continues faithful.
10. He would (should) start in spite of the danger.
11. Shall (will) you be a candidate?
12. He said he would (should) not go.
13. I shall (will) never see him again.
14. You will (shall) know to-morrow the result of the examination.
15. Will (shall) he who fails be allowed to try again?
16. Will (shall) the admission fee be twenty-five or fifty cents?
17. He thought there would (should) be a charge.
18. I will (shall) be the last to go.
19. He thought I would (should) wait.
20. He says that she will (shall) not eat watermelon.
21. If she disobeyed she would (should) be punished.
22. Do you think I should (would) go under the circumstances?
23. If they would (should) come, the danger would be averted.
24. If I would (should) say so, he would dislike me.
25. He says he will (shall) not come, since she forgot him at first.
26. We will (shall) come as soon as we can.
27. I will (shall) not endure his rudeness.
28. John says he will (shall) stay to see the game.
_Insert the proper auxiliary (will, shall) in each blank in the following
1. I ---- be drowned; nobody ---- help me.
2. You ---- have a wet day for your journey.
3. He says he ---- not be able to come.
4. We ---- not soon forget this picnic.
5. He ---- repent of his folly when it is too late.
6. We ---- be pleased to have you call.
7. The gathering ---- be informal; therefore I ---- not need my dress suit
8. We ---- have occasion to test the wires to-night.
9. I ---- be obliged to you for your autograph.
10. He ---- be obliged to you.
11. The managers have agreed that the race ---- be rowed again.
12. Do you think we ---- have rain?
13. If the fire is not put out soon, we ---- have the whole town to
14. Do not fear; we ---- be all right.
15. A prize is offered to whoever ---- guess this conundrum.
16. We ---- find ourselves much mistaken.
17. The time is coming when we ---- have to go elsewhere for lumber.
18. Are you not afraid that you ---- miss the train?
19. Yes, I fear that I ---- miss the train.
20. He is afraid that he ---- miss the train.
21. They say I ---- find picture-galleries in every city.
22. Think what a happy life we ---- live.
23. If you will call for me, I ---- be glad to go with you.
24. I ---- be sixteen in May.
25. John thinks he ---- be sick to-morrow.
26. He says James ---- be sick to-morrow.
27. Howard thinks he ---- probably live to old age.
28. Howard thinks his brother ---- probably live to old age.
29. He tells me that he--be ten next month.
30. We ---- be all right if Congress will (shall) adjourn without
tampering with the tariff.
31. If we examine the falling snow, we ---- find that each flake consists
of particles of ice.
32. He has resolved that he ---- not answer the letter.
33. She has resolved that her daughter ---- not answer his letter.
34. I ---- feel greatly obliged if you ---- tell me.
35. When He--appear, we ---- be like Him.
36. I hope we ---- be in time to get good seats.
37. When ---- I come to get my paper?
38. ---- I put more coal on the fire?
39. ---- you be sorry to leave Boston?
40. ---- you be elected?
41. When ---- we three meet again?
42. ---- I fetch a chair for you?
43. ---- you be surprised to hear it?
44. ---- you do me the favor to reply by return mail?
45. ---- we have time to get our tickets?
46. ---- you have time to get your ticket?
47. ---- he have time to get his ticket?
48. ---- there be time to get our tickets?
49. ---- you be at leisure after dinner?
50. ---- I find you at home?
51. When ---- we have peace?
52. ---- he find gold there? ---- we find any?
53. ---- we hear a good lecture if we go?
54. If I fail on this examination,---- I be allowed to take it over again?
_Insert the proper auxiliary (would, should) in each blank in the
1. I ---- like to know who he is.
2. We ---- prefer to go by boat from Rhinebeck.
3. He ---- prefer to go by boat from Poughkeepsie.
4. He ---- be sorry to miss his train.
5. I ---- be sorry to lose this umbrella.
6. I ---- feel hurt if he ---- abuse my hospitality in that way.
7. Were I to go, I ---- get tired.
8. He ought to have known that we ---- be ruined.
9. I ---- think he ---- know they are fooling him.
10. The head-master decided that you ---- be promoted.
11. Ralph said he ---- (volition) not stay at the hotel if it were not
12. Though I ---- die for it, yet ---- I do it.
13. I was afraid she ---- not come.
14. If I knew where she is, I ---- write to her.
15. We ---- have been paid, if the treasurer had been at home.
16. They ---- have been paid, if the treasurer had been at home.
17. I said nothing lest she ---- feel hurt.
18. I asked her whether she ---- come again.
19. He promised that it ---- not occur again.
20. If it ---- rain, we would not start.
21. Queen Isabella offered a reward to the first man who ---- discover
22. Cornelia was afraid that we ---- miss the train.
23. I expected that they ---- accept the proposal.
24. He said Miss Anderson ---- not return to the stage.
25. Franklin resolved that Collins ---- row. Collins said that he ---- not
row, but that Franklin ---- row in his place.
26. At first I did not think I ---- enjoy seeing the World's Fair.
27. What ---- we do without our friends?
28. If he ---- come to-day, would (should) you be ready?
QUESTIONS OF TENSE.--The tense of a verb should correctly express
the time referred to. Most errors in the use of tenses are violations of
some one of the following principles, which are established by good
1. Principal verbs referring to the same time should be in the same tense.
2. The _perfect indicative_ represents something as now completed--as
begun in the past but continuing till the present, at least in its
consequences: as, "I _have lost_ my book" (so that now I do not have
it); "This house _has stood_ for ninety years" (it is still standing);
"Bishop Brooks _has died,_ but he _has left_ us his example" (he is not
now among us, but we have his example).
3. The tense of the verb in a dependent clause varies with the tense of
the principal verb: as,
I _know_ he _will_ come.
I _knew_ he _would_ come.
I _have taken_ the first train, that I _may_ arrive early.
I _had taken_ the first train, that I _might_ arrive early.
Blanche _will be_ frightened if she _sees_ the bat.
Blanche _would be_ frightened if she _saw_ the bat.
Blanche _would have been_ frightened if she _had seen_ the bat.
Present facts and unchangeable truths, however, should be expressed in
the present tense, regardless of the tense of the principal verb: as,
"What did you say his name _is_?"
4. The _perfect infinitive_ is properly used to denote action which is
completed at the time denoted by the principal verb: as, "I am glad _to
have seen_ Niagara Falls;" "He felt sorry _to have hurt_ your feelings."
EXCEPTION.--_Ought, must, need,_ and _should_ (in the sense of "ought")
have no distinctive form to denote past time; with these verbs present
time is denoted by putting the complementary infinitive in the present
tense, past time is denoted by putting the complementary infinitive in the
perfect tense: as, "You ought _to go_," "You ought _to have gone_;" "He
should _be_ careful," "He should _have been_ careful." A similar change
from the present to the perfect infinitive is found after _could_ and
_might_ in some of their uses: as, "I could _go_," "I could _have gone_;"
"You might _have answered_."
 "Foundations," pp. 93-98.
 This is sometimes called the "Law of the Sequence of Tenses."
_Distinguish in meaning between the following_:--
1. The house stood (has stood) twenty years.
2. The messenger came (has come).
3. He should stay (have stayed).
4. It rained (has rained) for two weeks.
5. He was believed to live (to have lived) a happy life.
6. He ought to go (to have gone).
7. He deposited (has deposited) the money in bank.
8. I am sure I could go (have gone) alone.
9. Yesterday at three o'clock I completed (had completed) my work.
10. He must be (have been) weary.
11. He appeared to be (have been) crying.
12. He need not go. He need not have gone.
13. The horse jumped (had jumped) into the field, and began (had begun) to
eat the corn.
14. Achilles is said to be (have been) buried at the foot of this hill.
_Which of the italicized forms is right_?--
1. Where did you say Pike's Peak _is_ (_was_)?
2. I intended _to do_ (_to have done_) it yesterday.
3. Atlas _is_ (_was_) a mythical giant who was supposed _to hold_ (_to
have held_) the sky on his shoulders.
4. I do not think that any one would say that winter _is_ (_was_)
preferable to spring.
5. Cadmus was supposed _to build_ (_to have built_) Thebes.
6. Your father grieves _to hear_ (_to have heard_) of your bad conduct.
7. Would he have been willing _to go_ (_to have gone_) with you?
8. I meant _to write_ (_to have written_) yesterday.
9. He tried to learn how far it _is_ (_was_) from New York to Syracuse.
10. He hardly knew that two and two _make_ (_made_) four.
11. His experience proved that there _is_ (_was_) many a slip 'twixt the
cup and the lip.
12. Carrie knew that water _is_ (_was_) composed of two gases.
13. It was their duty to _prevent_ (_to have prevented_) this outrage.
14. He was reported _to rescue_ (_to have rescued_) the drowning man.
15. It would have been unkind _to refuse_ (_to have refused_) _to help_
(_to have helped_) him.
16. It would not have been difficult _to prevent_ (_to have prevented_)
17. Where did you say Gettysburg _is_ (_was_)?
18. It was as true as that he _is_ (_was_) listening to me when I said it.
19. It was harder than I expected it would _be_ (_have been_).
20. Homer is supposed _to be_ (_to have been_) born about 850 B.C.
21. When I came I intended _to buy_ (_to have bought_) all Paris.
22. Washington is known _to have_ (_to have had_) many narrow escapes.
23 If you would only wait, your success _will_ (_would_) be certain.
24. Is he very sick? I should say he _is_ (_was_).
25. Who first asserted that virtue _is_ (_was_) its own reward?
26. We have done no more than it was our duty _to do_ (_to have done_).
27. What building _is_ (_was_) that which we just passed?
28. He impressed on us the truth that honesty _is_ (_was_) the best policy.
29. He expected _to see_ (_to have seen_) you to-morrow.
30. He expected _to win_ (_to have won_) the suit, and was astonished at
the decision of the court.
31. The result of such constant reading by poor light would have been _to
destroy_ (_to have destroyed_) his sight.
32. It would have given me great satisfaction _to relieve_ (_to have
relieved_) him from his distress.
33. Who would have thought it possible _to receive_ (_to have received_) a
reply from India so soon?
34. It would have been better _to wait_ (_to have waited_).
35. I should like _to hear_ (_to have heard_) the speeches of Hayne and
36. The furniture was _to be_ (_to have been_) sold at auction.
37. It was a pity I was the only child, for my mother had fondness of
heart enough _to spoil_ (_to have spoiled_) a dozen children.
38. I am writing to him so that he _may_ (_might_) be ready for us.
39. I have written to him so that he _may_ (_might_) be ready for us.
40. I wrote to him so that he _may_ (_might_) be ready for us.
_Examine the tenses in the following sentences, explain any errors which
you find, and correct them_:--
1. I knew him since boyhood.
2. It was a superstition among the Mexicans that a bullet will not kill a
man unless it has his name stamped on it.
3. Being absent from the last recitation, I am unable to write on the
subject assigned this morning.
4. Soon after Oliver reached home a servant announces the presence of
5. "'Got any luck?' says I. 'No,' says he. 'Well,' says I, 'I've got the
finest string of trout ever was seen.'"
6. Be virtuous and you would be happy.
7. Stackhouse believed that he solved the problem he had so long studied
over, and yesterday afternoon he started from his house, No. 2446 North
Tenth Street, to make a test.
8. This beautiful little bird that appears to the king and tries to warn
him, was not an ordinary bird.
9. Next September I shall be at school three years.
10. I know very little about the "Arabian Nights," for I have never read
any of the stories before I came to this school.
11. If he received your instructions he would have obeyed them.
12. Before he was going to have the sign printed he submitted it to his
friends for corrections.
13. The Balloon Society recently invited Mr. Gould to read before them a
paper on yachting. Mr. Gould, in reply, has expressed regret that the
shortness of his visit will prevent him from accepting the invitation.
14. I should be obliged to him if he will gratify me in that respect.
15. While he was in England the British had given him very honorable
positions in America in order to have his help if they had any trouble
with the colonies.
16. Up and down the engines pounded. It is a good twenty-one knots now,
and the upper deck abaft the chart-house began rapidly to fill.
17. Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln regret that a previous engagement, will prevent
them from accepting Mrs. Black's kind invitation for Thursday.
18. Mr. Rockwell will accept with pleasure the invitation of Mr. and Mrs.
Pembroke for Tuesday evening, December 3d.
19. I am sure that he has been there and did what was required of him.
20. He might probably have been desirous, in the first place, to have
dried his clothes and refreshed himself.
21. He could not have failed to have aroused suspicion.
22. When, on the return of Dr. Primrose's son Moses from the Fair, the
family had discovered how he had been cheated, we are shown an
admirable picture of home life.
23. Apart from his love, Orlando was also a noble youth. When old Adam, at
last overcome by fatigue, sank in the footsteps of Orlando, Orlando
tries to encourage and assist him.
24. The increase in tonnage was not so rapid as it would have been were it
not for the Act of 1790.
INDICATIVE OR SUBJUNCTIVE.--The modern tendency to drop the
subjunctive is unfortunate, for the distinction between the subjunctive
and the indicative is too useful to be abandoned. A knowledge of the
difference between these modes in English is especially important in view
of the difficulty which pupils complain of in mastering the uses of the
Latin subjunctive or the Greek subjunctive and optative. For these
reasons more space is given to the subjunctive in this book than would be
called for by a mere discussion of modern English usage.
FORMS of the SUBJUNCTIVE--In form the English
subjunctive differs from the indicative in several ways:--
1. In the single case of the verb _to be_ there are distinct
forms for the present and past tenses, namely:--
I, we \ I _were_, we \
thou, you } _be_. thou _wert_, you } _were_.
he, they/ he _were_, they/
EXAMPLES.--"See that my room _be_ got ready at once." "I will work you
a banner if you _be_ victorious." "The headsman feels if the axe
_be_ sharp." "Take care lest you _be_ deceived." "Judge not that ye
_be_ not judged." "I will beard them, though they _be_ more fanged than
wolves and bears." "If I _were_ you, I would not say that." "If you
_were_ more studious, you would rank high." "Would that my parents _were_
2. In _other verbs_ the subjunctive form is distinguishable
from the indicative in the second and third persons singular
by the absence of the personal endings _-th,-s_, or _-st_: as,
_Present Indicative_: I have, thou hast, he has (hath).
_Subjunctive_: I have, thou have, he have.
_Past Indicative_: I had, thou hadst, he had.
_Subjunctive_: I had, thou had, he had.
_Present Indicative_: I come, thou comest, he comes (cometh).
_Subjunctive_: I come, thou come, he come.
_Past Indicative_: I came, thou earnest, he came.
_Subjunctive_: I came, thou came, he came.
 "Foundations," pp. 98-101.
 "Some people seem to think that the subjunctive mood is as good as
lost, that it is doomed, and that its retention is hopeless. If its
function were generally appreciated, it might even now be saved.... If we
lose the Subjunctive Verb, it will certainly be a grievous impoverishment
to our literary language, were it only for its value in giving variation
to diction--and I make bold to assert that the writer who helps to keep it
up deserves public gratitude."--John Earle: English Prose, its Elements,
History, and Usage, p. 172.
 "The lecturer also put in a plea for more vitality in the teaching of
English, which ought to be made the gate to other languages. Many of the
difficult questions of Latin syntax might be examined in the field of
English, if only we were careful to treat our English critically. Whereas
most grammars cut the ground from under them by denying the existence of a
Subjunctive Mood. Until teachers recognize generally that, in such a
sentence as 'If he had done it, it had been better,' we have a Subjunctive
in both clauses, and a sentence essentially different from 'If he had
loved her before, he now adored her,' English must forfeit half its value,
both as a mental discipline and as a means of approach to Latin, Greek,
and German."--From a report of a Lecture by Prof. Sonnenschein, of the
Mason College, quoted in Earle's "English Prose," p. 55.
 In such sentences the indicative would be, according to modern usage,
correct, and it is more common.
EXAMPLES.--"Long _live_ the king!" "If thou _go_, see that thou _offend_
not." "It is better he _die_." "Though he _slay_ me, yet will I trust
him." "Unless he _behave_ better, he will be punished." "If I will that
he _tarry_ till I come, what is that to thee?" "Govern well thy appetite,
lest sin _surprise_ thee." "If my sister _saw_ this snake, she would be
frightened." "I wish I _knew_ where Charles is."
The perfect and pluperfect subjunctives are of course formed by means of
the subjunctive present and past tenses of "have."
3. Very often, instead of the simple subjunctive forms, we use auxiliary
verbs--_may_ (past, _might_) and _would_ or _should_--to express the
subjunctive idea. "May" ("might") is common as an equivalent for the
subjunctive mode in clauses denoting a purpose, a wish, a hope, or a fear:
as, "Bring him the book, that he _may read_ to us;" "_May_ he _rest_ in
peace;" "I hope you _may succeed_;" "They were afraid we _might lose_ the
way." "Would" and "should" are common substitutes for all tenses of the
subjunctive: as, "Walk carefully lest you (stumble) _should stumble_;" "If
he (come) _should come_, he will find me at home;" "It (were) _would be_
better if he (went) _should go_ alone;" "If my sister had seen this mouse,
she (had been) _would have been_ frightened." In these sentences either
the form in parenthesis or the italicized form is correct, though the
latter is more common.
NOTE.--It does not follow that the verbs "may," "would," and "should"
always express the subjunctive idea. In the following sentences, for
instance, they express the indicative idea: "You _may_ (_i.e_., are
permitted to) stay an hour;" "You _should_ (_i.e_., ought to) be
punctual;" "Edith _would_ not (_i.e_., was unwilling to) come." In such
sentences "may," "should," and "would" make simple statements of fact.
USES of the SUBJUNCTIVE.--The indicative form is used in
expressing a fact or what is assumed to be a fact: as "He _thinks_ he _is_
ill;" the subjunctive form indicates some uncertainty or doubt in the
speaker's mind: as, "Whether it _rain_ or not, I will go."
The subjunctive idea occurs most frequently, perhaps, in _conditional
sentences_. A conditional sentence is one that contains a condition or
supposition. A supposition may refer to present, past, or future time. If
it refers to present or past time, it may be viewed by the speaker as
true, untrue, or as a mere supposition with nothing implied as to its
truth; if it refers to the future, it may be viewed as either likely or
unlikely. A supposition which is assumed to be true, or which is made
without any hint as to its correctness, is expressed by the indicative. A
supposition which is viewed by the speaker as untrue or unlikely is
expressed by the subjunctive or a periphrase for the subjunctive. When
the character of the supposition makes the conclusion untrue or unlikely,
the conclusion also is expressed by the subjunctive or a periphrase for
the subjunctive. The use of tenses is peculiar, as will be seen from the
following table of a few common forms of conditional sentences. The tenses
should be carefully noted:--
If it _rains_ (_is raining_) now, I am sorry.
_Present indicative_: A simple supposition without any hint as to its
If it _rained_ (_were raining_), I _should be_ sorry.
_Past subjunctive, both clauses_: The speaker implies that it is
If it _rained_ (_was raining_), I was sorry.
_Past indicative_: No suggestion of doubt.
If it _had rained_, I _should have been_ sorry.
_Past perfect subjunctive, both clauses_: The speaker implies that it
did not rain.
If it _rains_, I shall be sorry.
_Present indicative_: The common, though inexact, form of a simple
If it _rain_, I shall be sorry.
_Present subjunctive_: Less common, but more exact. The future is
If it _should_ (_were to_) _rain_, I _should be_
sorry. _Subjunctive, both clauses_: The uncertainty is emphasized
by the auxiliary form; the chances of rain seem more remote.
NOTE 1.--When _if_ is equivalent to "whenever", the condition is called
"general", to distinguish it from "particular" conditions, which refer to
some particular act at some particular time. General conditions always
take the indicative: as, "If (whenever) it _rains_, I stay at home."
NOTE 2.--Sometimes there is no "if", and then the verb or a part of the
verb precedes the subject: as, "Were it raining, I should be sorry;" "Had
it been raining, I should have been sorry."
NOTE 3.--In such sentences as "If thou hadst been here, my brother had not
died," it may perhaps be questioned whether "had not died" is indicative,
as in the Greek, or subjunctive, as in the Latin, idiom.
NOTE 4.--Clauses introduced by _though_ and _unless_ take the same forms
as clauses introduced by _if_.
_Wishes_ are naturally expressed in the subjunctive. The _present_
subjunctive denotes a wish for the future: as, "Thy kingdom _come_." The
_past_ subjunctive denotes a wish for the present which is unfulfilled:
as, "I wish I _were_ a bird." The _past perfect_ subjunctive denotes a
wish contrary to a past fact: as, "I wish you _had been_ there."
 In such sentences the indicative would be, according to modern usage,
correct, and it is more common.
 See paragraph 3, page 84. The forms in "would" and "should" in
conditional sentences, though they express the subjunctive idea, can
hardly be called the "subjunctive mood". Sometimes they are called the
_Tell the time referred to in each of the following sentences, and whether
the speaker regards the condition as true, untrue, or uncertain_:--
1. If all men did their duty, there would be less misery in the world.
2. Had I heard of the affair sooner, this misfortune would not have
3. Were it true, I would say so.
4. I would go with you if I could spare the time.
5. She could sing if she would.
6. If love be rough with you, be rough with love.
7. If all the year were playing holidays, to play would be as tedious as
8. If thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, he shall
die in his iniquity.
9. He brags as if he were of note.
10. If the natural course of this stream be obstructed, the water will
make a new channel.
11. If the natural course of a stream is obstructed, the water will make a
12. If the book was in my library, some one must have borrowed it.
13. If he knows the way, he does not need a guide.
14. If he still wishes to go, he may take my horse.
15. Had he followed my advice, he would be rich.
16. Had she lived a twelvemonth more
She had not died to-day.
17. Though gods they were, as men they died.
18. Though the law is severe, we must obey it.
19. If the law be severe, we must change it.
20. Though the vase were made of steel, the servant would break it.
21. Though the vase was made of steel, the servant broke it.
_Tell the difference in meaning between the italicized forms_:--
1. If he _is_ (_were_) studious, he _will_ (_would_) excel.
2. If he _was_ (_had been_) studious, he _excelled_ (_would have
3. Oh, that you _may be_ (_were, had been_) blameless.
4. Though he _deceive_ (_deceives_) me, yet will I trust him.
5. Though he deceived me, yet _will_ (_would_) I trust him.
6. Though he _deceived_ (_had deceived_) me, yet would I trust him
7. Though the boy's coat _was_ (_were_) made of silk, he _soiled_ (_would
_Which, of the italicized forms is preferable? Give the reason_:--
1. They act as if it _was_ (_were_) possible to deceive us.
2. If I _was_ (_were_) in his place, I would go.
3. I wish my mother _was_ (_were_) here.
4. See that no one _is_ (_be_) forgotten.
5. If this _is_ (_be_) treason, make the most of it.
6. If it _rain_ (_rains_), the work is delayed.
7. If it _rain_ (_rains_), the work will be delayed.
8. Take care lest you _are_ (_be_) carried away by your feelings.
9. If he _acquire_ (_acquires_) riches, they may make him worldly.
10. I could jump across the stream if it _was_ (_were_) necessary.
11. If to-morrow _is_ (_be_) breezy, we will go sailing.
12. If my father _was_ (_were_) here, he would enjoy this.
13. If she _was_ (_were_) at the reception, I did not see her.
14. If he _speak_ (_speaks_) only to display his talents, he is unworthy
15. I wish I _was_ (_were_) at home.
16. Though this _seem_ (_seems_) improbable, it is true.
17. I should be surprised if this marriage _take_ (_took, will take,
should take_) place.
18. If the book _was_ (_were_) in my library, I would send it.
19. I will see that he _obey_ (_obeys_) you.
20. If a man _smite_ (_smites_) his servant and the servant _die_
(_dies_), the man shall surely be put to death.
21. Though he _is_ (_be_) poor and helpless now, you may rest assured that
he will not remain so.
22. I wish I _was_ (_were_) a musician.
23. Make haste lest your ardor _cool_ (_cools_).
24. He will continue his course, though it _cost_ (_costs_) him his life.
25. Though a liar _speak_ (_speaks_) the truth, he will hardly be
26. Govern well thy appetite, lest sin _surprise_ (_surprises_) thee.
27. Though gold _is_ (_be_) more precious than iron, iron is more useful
28. Whether he _go_ (_goes_) or not, it is your duty to go.
29. If he _was_ (_were, should be_) elected, it would be his ruin.
30. If a picture _is_ (_be_) admired by none but painters, the picture is
31. If one _went_ (_should go_) unto them from the dead, they would repent.
32. If an animal of any kind _was_ (_were_) kept shut up in a box, it
would surely die.
33. They will not believe, though one _rose_ (_rise_) from the dead.
34. Clerk wanted. It is indispensable that he _write_ (_writes_) a good
hand and _have_ (_has_) some knowledge of book-keeping.
35. If the debtor _pay_ (_pays_) the debt, he shall be discharged.
36. If my sister _go_ (_goes_), which I think is doubtful, she will surely
call for you.
37. The most glorious hero that ever desolated nations might have mouldered
into oblivion _did_ (_had_) not some historian _take_ (_taken_)
him into favor.
38. He will see his error if he _substitute_ (_substitutes_) "that which"
39. Though Dorothy _is_ (_be_) young, she is tall.
40. Unless he _take_ (_takes_) better care of his health, his constitution
will break down.
41. If I lend you my horse, I _shall_ (_should_) have to borrow one myself.
42. I hope that if any of my readers _comes_ (_come, should come_) to New
Haven, he may find the city just as I have described it.
SINGULAR or PLURAL.--The following principles, established by
good usage, writers or speakers are liable to forget:--
1. The expressions _each, every, many a, either_, and _neither_ are
2. When the subject consists of singular nouns or pronouns connected by
_or, either_--_or_, or _neither_--_nor_, the verb must be singular.
3. Words joined to the subject by _with, together with, in addition to_,
or _as well as_, are not a part of the grammatical subject, but are
parenthetical, and therefore do not affect the number of the verb.
4. Since a relative pronoun has the number and person of its antecedent,
a verb whose subject is a relative pronoun agrees in person and number
with the antecedent of the relative.
5. "When the subject though plural in form is singular in sense, the verb
should be singular; when the subject though singular in form is plural
in sense, the verb should be plural:" as, "'Gulliver's Travels'
_was_ written by Swift;" "Five hundred dollars _is_ a large sum;" "Half
of them _are_ gone."
6. "A collective noun, when it refers to the collection as a whole, is
singular in sense, and therefore requires a singular verb; when it
refers to the individual persons or things of the collection, it is
plural and requires a plural verb."
 "Foundations," pp, 101-108.
 A.S. Hill: Principles of Rhetoric, revised edition, p. 56.
 Ibid., p. 57.
_Insert the proper form of the verb "to be" in each of the blank places_:--
1. "Horses" ---- a common noun.
2. Such phenomena ---- very strange.
3. The ship with all her crew ---- lost.
4. No less than fifty dollars ---- paid for what was not worth twenty.
5. Homer, as well as Virgil, ---- once students (a student) on the banks of
6. The committee ---- divided in its (their) judgment.
7. The genii who ---- expected to be present ---- deaf to every call.
8. France was once divided into a number of kingdoms, each of which ----
ruled by a duke.
9. Sir Richard Steele lived in the reign of Queen Anne, when the tone of
gentlemen's characters ---- very low.
10. Each man employed in this department ---- paid for his (their) work.
11. Mathematics ---- my hardest study.
12. There ---- once two boys who were so exactly alike in appearance that
they could not be distinguished.
13. Each of the heads of the Chimera ---- able to spit fire.
14. The jury ---- eating dinner.
15. "Plutarch's Lives" ---- an interesting book.
16. One of the most beautiful features of Kennebunkport ---- the tremendous
rocks all along the coast.
17. The richness of her arms and apparel ---- conspicuous in the foremost
18. My robe and my integrity to heaven
---- all I dare now call my own.
19. Refreshing as springs in the desert to their long-languishing eyes ----
the sight of his white cravat and his boots of Parisian polish.
20. The "Arabian Nights" in complete form comprise (comprises) twenty
volumes and ---- written by different men.
21. Fifty dollars a month ---- paid by the government to the widow of the
22. Ten minutes ---- spent in a writing exercise.
23. ---- either of you going to the village?
24. Our happiness or our sorrow ---- largely due to our own actions.
25. The guidance as well as the love of a mother ---- wanting.
26. Every one of these books ---- mine.
27. General Custer with his whole force ---- massacred by Indians.
28. Three times three ---- nine.
29. Nearly three hundred yards of the track ---- under water.
30. To admit the existence of God and then to refuse to worship him ----
31. The ebb and flow of the tides ---- caused by the attraction of the
32. Six dollars a week ---- all he earns.
33. Nine-tenths of his time ---- wasted.
34. Three quarts of oats ---- enough for a horse's meal.
35. "Tales of a Wayside Inn" ---- written by Longfellow.
36. The rest of the Republican ticket ---- elected.
_Which of the italicized forms is preferable_?--
1. A variety of pleasing objects _charm_ (_charms_) the eye.
2. Already a train or two _has_ (_have_) come in.
3. Each day and each hour _bring_ (_brings_) contrary blessings.
4. The Senate _has_ (_have_) adjourned.
5. No monstrous height, or length, or breadth _appear_ (_appears_).
6. I am the general who _command_ (_commands_) you.
7. Many a captain with all his crew _has_ (_have_) been lost at sea.
8. The jury _who_ (_which_) _was_ (_were_) out all night _has_ (_have_)
just returned a verdict.
9. He _dare_ (_dares_) not touch a hair of Catiline.
10. The ambition and activity of this railroad _has_ (_have_) done much
towards the civilization of the world.
11. Thackeray's "English Humorists" _treat_ (_treats_) not of the writings
of the humorists so much as of their characters and lives.
12. Addison was one of the best writers that _has_ (_have_) ever lived.
13. This is one of the books that _give_ (_gives_) me pleasure.
14. Give me one of the books that _is_ (_are_) lying on the table.
15. This is one of the most important questions that _has_ (_have_)
16. Nothing but vain and foolish pursuits _delight_ (_delights_) some
17. Six months' interest _is_ (_are_) due.
18. You are not the first one that _has_ (_have_) been deceived in
19. My room is one of those that _overlook_ (_overlooks_) the garden.
20. A committee _was_ (_were_) appointed to investigate the matter.
21. The greater part of the audience _was_ (_were_) pleased.
22. The public _is_ (_are_) respectfully invited.
23. The jury _was_ (_were_) not unanimous.
24. Generation after generation _pass_ (_passes_) away.
25. A glimpse of gable roof and red chimneys _add_ (_adds_) far more to
the beauty of such a scene than could the grandest palace.
26. The society _hold_ (_holds_) _their_ (_its_) meetings weekly.
27. What _is_ (_are_) the gender, the number, and the person of the
28. He made one of the best speeches that _has_ (_have_) been delivered
before the school.
29. He is one of those persons who _is_ (_are_) quick to take offence.
30. _This_ (_these_) scanty data _is_ (_are_) all we have.
31. If the meaning of these passages is not carefully explained, some of
the congregation may think that Matthew or Paul _is_ (_are_) guilty of
some unorthodox opinions.
MISUSED VERBS.--See the remarks under "Misused Nouns."
I. A RESEMBLANCE IN SOUND MISLEADS.
ACCREDIT, CREDIT.--'To _accredit_ means 'to invest with credit or
authority,' or 'to send with letters credential;' _to credit_ means 'to
believe,' or "to put to the credit of."
ARISE, RISE.--"The choice between these words was primarily, and
still often is, a matter of rhythm [euphony]. The literal meanings,
however, or those which seem literal, have become more associated with
_rise_, and the consciously figurative with _arise_: as, he _rose_ from
the chair; the sun _rose_; the provinces _rose_ in revolt: trouble
_arose;_ 'music _arose_ with its voluptuous swell.'"
CAPTIVATE, CAPTURE.--_To captivate_ means "to fascinate"; _to
capture_, "to take prisoner."
DEPRECIATE, DEPRECATE.--_To depreciate_ means "to bring down in
value," "to disparage;" _to deprecate_ means "to argue earnestly against"
or "to express regret for."
IMPUGN, IMPUTE.--_To impugn_ means "to call in question;" _to impute_
means "to ascribe to."
Loan, lend.--The use of _loan_ as a verb is not sanctioned by good use.
Properly the word is a noun. A _loan_ is money which a person _lends_.
 "Foundations," p. 109.
 A.S. Hill: Principles of Rhetoric, revised edition, p. 38.
 The Century Dictionary.
_Tell the difference in meaning between_--
1. The Amazon _captivated (captured)_ our hero.
2. The king _depreciated (deprecated)_ Napoleon's effort to raise a new
3. The readiness with which men _impute (impugn)_ motives is much to be
_Insert the proper word in each blank, and give the reason for your
1. Mr. Lowell was ----ed as Minister Plenipotentiary to England.
2. These reasons will ---- his opinion.
3. He did not ---- the strange report.
4. The contribution of five dollars previously ----ed to Mr. Williams came
from Mr. Brown.
5. Mr. Sherman is well ----ed as a writer on finance.
6. The bank has not ----ed me with the interest on the deposit.
7. The court ---- at four o'clock.
8. At the discharge of a gun whole flocks of quail would ----.
9. The idea of a reward did not ---- in his mind.
10. Most of these appalling accidents ---- from negligence.
11. The men ---- against their officers.
12. Other cases of mutiny may ----.
13. Her husband was ----d in the battle of Gettysburg.
14. Mr. S. was ----d by the young widow's beauty.
15. Let us attack them now and try to ---- the whole squad.
16. It is not merely what Chaucer has to say, but even more the agreeable
way he has of saying it, that ----s our attention and gives him an
assured place in literature.
17. Financial panics are likely to follow a--d currency.
18. His purpose was--d by all who knew it.
19. Both parties--war.
20. It is natural for those who have not succeeded to--the work of those
21. He--s his daughter's desire to earn her own living.
22. An injurious consequence of asceticism was a tendency to--the
character and the position of woman.
23. We cannot deny the conclusion of a proposition of Euclid without--ing
the axioms which are the basis of its demonstration.
24. The gentleman--s my honesty.
25. The power of fortune is confessed only by the miserable, for the
happy--all their success to prudence and merit.
26. Mr.X. is uncharitable; he always--s bad motives.
II. A RESEMBLANCE IN SENSE MISLEADS.
ANTAGONIZE, OPPOSE.--To _antagonize_ means properly "to struggle
against," "to oppose actively," or "to counteract." "In England,
antagonizing forces must be of the same kind, but in the political
phraseology of the United States a person may antagonize (i.e., oppose) a
CALCULATE, INTEND.--To _calculate_ means properly "to compute
mathematically," or "to adjust or adapt" for something. In the sense of
_intend_ it is not in good use.
CARRY, BRING, FETCH.--To _carry_ means "to take along in going;" to
_bring_ means "to take along in coming;" to _fetch_ means "to go, get, and
CHAMPION, SUPPORT.--The word _champion_ is very much overworked,
being often used in the general sense of "support." It should be
restricted to cases in which there is the idea of entering the lists as
champion of a cause.
CLAIM, ASSERT, ALLEGE, MAINTAIN, DECLARE, AFFIRM, STATE.--To _claim_
means properly "to demand as one's own or one's due." It is often loosely
used, especially in the United States, for "assert," "allege," "maintain,"
"declare," or "affirm." To _assert_ is "to say or declare in the face of
implied denial or doubt." To _allege_ is "to assert without proof." To
_maintain_ is "to uphold by argument." To _declare_ is "to say publicly,
clearly, or emphatically." To _affirm_ is "to assert on one's reputation
for knowledge or truthfulness." To _state_, which is also often misused in
the sense of "say," "assert," "allege," "declare," or "affirm," means
properly "to express formally and in detail;" it always implies detail.
(See "Foundations," pp. 113, 114, and "Practical Exercises," p. 99.)
CONFESS, ADMIT.--"_Admit_, in cases into which the idea of confession
does not enter, is preferable to _confess_. On grounds of idiom, however,
'I must confess' and the parenthetical 'I confess' are exempt from the
operation of this rule."
DEMAND, ASK.--_To demand_ means "_to ask_ for with authority or with
insistence." The use of "demand" in the sense of "ask" is borrowed,
possibly, from the French use of _demander_.
HIRE, LET, LEASE.--_To hire_ means "to obtain the use of;" _to let_,
"to give the use of." _To lease_ means "to give the use of by lease." The
owner of a house _leases_ it; the person who occupies it _takes a lease_
LEARN, TEACH.--_Learn_ means to "acquire" knowledge, not to "impart"
it. In the latter sense the proper word is _teach_.
"I have more information to-day than I had before," said Mr. Sheehan.
"This has learned you something," said Mr. Goff.
"Oh no," replied Mr. Sheehan, "it has taught me something."
LIKE, LOVE.--_Like_ and _love_ differ greatly in strength or warmth,
and may differ in kind. _Like_ may be feeble and cool, and it never has
the intensity of _love_. We may _like_ or even _love_ a person; we only
_like_ the most palatable kind of food. With an infinitive, _like_ is the
common word, _love_ being appropriate only in the hyperbole of poetical or
MATERIALIZE, APPEAR.--_To materialize_ properly means "to make or to
become physically perceptible;" as, "by means of letters we materialize
our ideas and make them as lasting as ink and paper;" "the ideas of the
sculptor materialize in marble."
PLEAD, ARGUE.--See _plea, argument,_ p. 29.
STAY, STOP.--"_Stay,_ as in 'At what hotel are you staying?' is
preferable to _stop_, since _stop_ also means 'to stop without
TRANSPIRE, HAPPEN.--_To transpire_ means properly "to escape from
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