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segunda-feira, 22 de abril de 2019

Electric Cars in Norway

English Idiomatic Expressions

When something
is done badly to save money.
Kill two birds with one stoneThis idiom means, to accomplish two different things at
the same time.
Last strawThe final problem in a series of problems.
Let sleeping dogs lieMeaning - do not disturb a situation as it is - since
it would result in trouble or complications.
Elvis has left the buildingThe show has come to an end. It's all over.
Drastic times call for drastic measuresWhen you are extremely desperate you need to take
drastic actions.
Method to my madnessAn assertion that, despite one's approach seeming
random, there actually is structure to it.
Don't put all your eggs in one basketDo not put all your resources in one possibility.
Don't give up the day jobYou are not very good at something. You could
definitely not do it professionally.
Don't count your chickens before the eggs
have hatched
This idiom is used to express "Don't make plans
for something that might not happen".
Hit the sack / sheets / hayTo go to bed.
Cut the mustard [possibly derived from
"cut the muster"]
To succeed; to come up to expectations; adequate enough
to compete or participate
Ball is in your courtIt is up to you to make the next decision or step
Actions speak louder than wordsPeople's intentions can be judged better by what they
do than what they say.
At the drop of a hatMeaning: without any hesitation; instantly.
Back to the drawing boardWhen an attempt fails and it's time to start all over.
Cross that bridge when you come to itDeal with a problem if and when it becomes necessary,
not before.
Bite off more than you can chewTo take on a task that is way to big.
Burn the midnight oilTo work late into the night, alluding to the time
before electric lighting.
Piece of cakeA job, task or other activity that is easy or simple.
Beat around the bushAvoiding the main topic. Not speaking directly about
the issue.
Be glad to see the back ofBe happy when a person leaves.
Devil's AdvocateTo present a counter argument
Add insult to injuryTo further a loss with mockery or indignity; to worsen
an unfavorable situation.
Hear it on the grapevineThis idiom means 'to hear rumors' about something or
A hot potatoSpeak of an issue (mostly current) which many people
are talking about and which is usually disputed
Give the benefit of the doubtBelieve someone's statement, without proof.
Hit the nail on the headDo or say something exactly right
Barking up the wrong treeLooking in the wrong place. Accusing the wrong person
Let the cat out of the bagTo share information that was previously concealed
See eye to eyeThis idiom is used to say that two (or more people)
agree on something.
Speak of the devil!This expression is used when the person you have just
been talking about arrives.
Make a long story shortCome to the point - leave out details
Picture paints a thousand wordsA visual presentation is far more descriptive than
Take with a grain of saltThis means not to take what someone says too seriously.
To hear something straight from the
horse's mouth
To hear something from the authoritative source.
Whole nine yardsEverything. All of it.
Steal someone's thunderTo take the credit for something someone else did.
Keep something at bayKeep something away.
A penny for your thoughtsA way of asking what someone is thinking
It takes two to tangoActions or communications need more than one person
Put wool over other people's eyesThis means to deceive someone into thinking well of
Can't judge a book by its coverCannot judge something primarily on appearance.
Costs an arm and a legThis idiom is used when something is very expensive.
Blessing in disguiseSomething good that isn't recognized at first.
Every cloud has a silver liningBe optimistic, even difficult times will lead to better
Miss the boatThis idiom is used to say that someone missed his or
her chance
Caught between two stoolsWhen someone finds it difficult to choose between two
Best of both worldsMeaning: All the advantages.
Your guess is as good as mineTo have no idea, do not know the answer to a question
Wouldn't be caught deadWould never like to do something
Jump on the bandwagonJoin a popular trend or activity.
Far cry fromVery different from.
Taste of your own medicineMeans that something happens to you, or is done to you,
that you have done to someone else
Sit on the fenceThis is used when someone does not want to choose or
make a decision.
Cry over spilt milkWhen you complain about a loss from the past.
Best thing since sliced breadA good invention or innovation. A good idea or plan.
Not playing with a full deckSomeone who lacks intelligence.
Off one's rockerCrazy, demented, out of one's mind, in a confused or
befuddled state of mind, senile.
On the ballWhen someone understands the situation well.
Once in a blue moonMeaning: Happens very rarely.
Feel a bit under the weatherMeaning: Feeling slightly ill.
Curiosity killed the catBeing Inquisitive can lead you into an unpleasant
In the heat of the momentOverwhelmed by what is happening in the moment.
Not a spark of decencyMeaning: No manners

sexta-feira, 19 de abril de 2019


n the primary meaning of between and among there is a sharp distinction

Between is used most often with two things only, but still it is frequently used in speaking of several objects, some relation or connection between two at a time being implied.

Among is used in the same way as amid (though not with exactly the same meaning), several objects being spoken of in the aggregate, no separation or division by twos being implied.

Examples of the distinctive use of the two words:—

The contentions that arise between the parson and the squire.—Addison.

We reckoned the improvements of the art of war among the triumphs of science.—Emerson.

Examples of the looser use of between:—

Natural objects affect us by the laws of that connection which Providence has established between certain motions of bodies.—Burke.

Hence the differences between men in natural endowment are insignificant in comparison with their common wealth.—Emerson.

They maintain a good correspondence between those wealthy societies of men that are divided from one another by seas and oceans.—Addison.

Looking up at its deep-pointed porches and the dark places between their pillars where there were statues once.—Ruskin

What have I, a soldier of the Cross, to do with recollections of war betwixt Christian nations?—Scott.

Also between may express relation or connection in speaking of two groups of objects, or one object and a group; as,—

A council of war is going on beside the watch fire, between the three adventurers and the faithful Yeo.—Kingsley.

The great distinction between teachers sacred or literary,—between poets like Herbert and poets like Pope,—betweenphilosophers like Spinoza, Kant, and Coleridge, and philosophers like Locke, Paley, Mackintosh, and Stewart, etc. —Emerson.

Certain words are followed by particular prepositions.

Some of these words show by their composition what preposition should follow. Such are absolveinvolvedifferent.

Some of them have, by custom, come to take prepositions not in keeping with the original meaning of the words. Such are derogatoryaverse.

Many words take one preposition to express one meaning, and another to convey a different meaning; as, correspondconfer.

And yet others may take several prepositions indifferently to express the same meaning.


  • Absolve from.
  • Abhorrent to.
  • Accord with.
  • Acquit of.
  • Affinity between.
  • Averse to.
  • Bestow on (upon).
  • Conform to.
  • Comply with.
  • Conversant with.
  • Dependent on (upon).
  • Different from.
  • Dissent from.
  • Derogatory to.
  • Deprive of.
  • Independent of.
  • Involve in.

"Different to" is frequently heard in spoken English in England, and sometimes creeps into standard books, but it is not good usage.


  • Agree with (a person).
  • Agree to (a proposal).
  • Change for (a thing).
  • Change with (a person).
  • Change to (become).
  • Confer with (talk with).
  • Confer on (upon) (give to).
  • Confide in (trust in).
  • Confide to (intrust to).
  • Correspond with (write to).
  • Correspond to (a thing).
  • Differ from (note below).
  • Differ with (note below).
  • Disappointed in (a thing obtained).
  • Disappointed of (a thing not obtained).
  • Reconcile to (note below).
  • Reconcile with (note below).
  • A taste of (food).
  • A taste for (art, etc.).

"Correspond with" is sometimes used of things, as meaning to be in keeping with.

"Differ from" is used in speaking of unlikeness between things or persons; "differ from" and "differ with" are both used in speaking of persons disagreeing as to opinions.

"Reconcile to" is used with the meaning of resigned to, as, "The exile became reconciled to his fate;" also of persons, in the sense of making friends with, as, "The king is reconciled to his minister." "Reconcile with" is used with the meaning of make to agree with, as, "The statement must be reconciled with his previous conduct."


  • Die by, die for, die from, die of, die with.
  • Expect of, expect from.
  • Part from, part with.

Illustrations of "die of," "die from," etc.:—

The author died of a fit of apoplexy.—Boswell.

People do not die of trifling little colds.—Austen

Fifteen officers died of fever in a day.—Macaulay.

It would take me long to die of hunger.—G. Eliot.

She died of hard work, privation, and ill treatment.—Burnett.

She saw her husband at last literally die from hunger.—Bulwer.

He died at last without disease, simply from old age. —Athenæum.

No one died from want at Longfeld.—Chambers' Journal.

She would have been ready to die with shame.—G. Eliot.

I am positively dying with hunger.—Scott.

I thought the two Miss Flamboroughs would have died with laughing.—Goldsmith.

I wish that the happiest here may not die with envy.—

Take thought and die for Cæsar.—Shakespeare.

One of them said he would die for her.—Goldsmith.

It is a man of quality who dies for her.—Addison.

Who, as Cervantes informs us, died for love of the fair Marcella.—Fielding.

Some officers had died for want of a morsel of bread.—Macaulay.

If I meet with any of 'em, they shall die by this hand. —Thackeray.

He must purge himself to the satisfaction of a vigilant tribunal or die by fire.—Macaulay.

He died by suicide before he completed his eighteenth year.—Shaw.

Illustrations of "expect of," "expect from:"—

What do I expect of Dublin?—Punch.

That is more than I expected of you.—Scott.

Of Doctor P. nothing better was to be expected.—Poe.

Not knowing what might be expected of men in general.—G. ELIOT.

She will expect more attention from you, as my friend.—Walpole.

There was a certain grace and decorum hardly to be expected from a man.—Macaulay.

I have long expected something remarkable from you.—G. Eliot.

"Part with" is used with both persons and things, but "part from" is less often found in speaking of things.

Illustrations of "part with," "part from:"—"Part with."

He was fond of everybody that he was used to, and hated to part with them.—Austen.

Cleveland was sorry to part with him.—Bulwer.

I can part with my children for their good.—Dickens.

I part with all that grew so near my heart.—Waller."Part from."

To part from you would be misery.—Marryat.

I have just seen her, just parted from her.—Bulwer.

Burke parted from him with deep emotion.—Macaulay.

His precious bag, which he would by no means part from.—G. ELIOT.

With words implying behavior or disposition, either of or in is used indifferently, as shown in the following quotations:—Of.

It was a little bad of you.—Trollope.

How cruel of me!—Collins.

He did not think it handsome of you.—Bulwer.

But this is idle of you.—Tennyson.In.

Very natural in Mr. Hampden.—Carlyle.

It will be anything but shrewd in you.—Dickens.

That is very unreasonable in a person so young.—Beaconsfield.

I am wasting your whole morning—too bad in me.—Bulwer.

quinta-feira, 18 de abril de 2019


In Latin, Greek, German, and many other languages, some general rules are given that names of male beings are usually masculine, and names of females are usually feminine. There are exceptions even to this general statement, but not so in English. Male beings are, in English grammar, always masculine; female, always feminine.

When, however, inanimate things are spoken of, these languages are totally unlike our own in determining the gender of words. For instance: in Latin, hortus (garden) is masculine, mensa (table) is feminine, corpus (body) is neuter; in German, das Messer (knife) is neuter, der Tisch (table) is masculine, die Gabel (fork) is feminine.

The great difference is, that in English the gender follows the meaning of the word, in other languages gender follows the form; that is, in English, gender depends on sex: if a thing spoken of is of the male sex, the name of it is masculine; if of the female sex, the name of it is feminine. Hence:

Gender is the mode of distinguishing sex by words, or additions to words.

It is evident from this that English can have but two genders,—masculine and feminine.

All nouns, then, must be divided into two principal classes,—gender nouns, those distinguishing the sex of the object; and neuter nouns, those which do not distinguish sex, or names of things without life, and consequently without sex.

Gender nouns include names of persons and some names of animals; neuter nouns include some animals and all inanimate objects.

Some words may be either gender nouns or neuter nouns, according to their use. Thus, the word child is neuter in the sentence, "A little child shall lead them," but is masculine in the sentence from Wordsworth,—I have seenA curious child ... applying to his earThe convolutions of a smooth-lipped shell.

Of animals, those with which man comes in contact often, or which arouse his interest most, are named by gender nouns, as in these sentences:—

Before the barn door strutted the gallant cock, that pattern of a husband, ... clapping his burnished wings.—Irving.

Gunpowder ... came to a stand just by the bridge, with a suddenness that had nearly sent his rider sprawling over his head—Id.

Other animals are not distinguished as to sex, but are spoken of as neuter, the sex being of no consequence.

Not a turkey but he [Ichabod] beheld daintily trussed up, with its gizzard under its wing.—Irving.

He next stooped down to feel the pig, if there were any signs of life in it.—Lamb.

According to the definition, there can be no such thing as "common gender:" words either distinguish sex (or the sex is distinguished by the context) or else they do not distinguish sex.

If such words as parentservantteacherrulerrelativecousindomestic, etc., do not show the sex to which the persons belong, they are neuter words.

Put in convenient form, the division of words according to sex, or the lack of it, is,—

(MASCULINE: Male beings.
Gender nouns {
(FEMININE: Female beings.

Neuter nouns: Names of inanimate things, or of living beings whose sex cannot be determined.

The inflections for gender belong, of course, only to masculine and feminine nouns. Forms would be a more accurate word than inflections, since inflection applies only to the case of nouns.

There are three ways to distinguish the genders:—

(1) By prefixing a gender word to another word.

(2) By adding a suffix, generally to a masculine word.

(3) By using a different word for each gender.

I. Gender shown by Prefixes.

Usually the gender words he and she are prefixed to neuter words; as he-goatshe-goatcock sparrowhen sparrowhe-bearshe-bear.

One feminine, woman, puts a prefix before the masculine manWoman is a short way of writing wifeman.

II. Gender shown by Suffixes.

By far the largest number of gender words are those marked by suffixes. In this particular the native endings have been largely supplanted by foreign suffixes.

The native suffixes to indicate the feminine were -en and -ster. These remain in vixen and spinster, though both words have lost their original meanings.

The word vixen was once used as the feminine of fox by the Southern-English. For fox they said vox; for from they said vram; and for the older word fatthey said vat, as in wine vat. Hence vixen is for fyxen, from the masculine fox.

Spinster is a relic of a large class of words that existed in Old and Middle English,[1] but have now lost their original force as feminines. The old masculine answering to spinster was spinner; but spinster has now no connection with it.

The foreign suffixes are of two kinds:—

(1) Those belonging to borrowed words, as czarinaseñoritaexecutrixdonna. These are attached to foreign words, and are never used for words recognized as English.

(2) That regarded as the standard or regular termination of the feminine, -ess (French esse, Low Latin issa), the one most used. The corresponding masculine may have the ending -er (-or), but in most cases it has not. Whenever we adopt a new masculine word, the feminine is formed by adding this termination -ess.

Sometimes the -ess has been added to a word already feminine by the ending -ster; as seam-str-esssong-str-ess. The ending -ster had then lost its force as a feminine suffix; it has none now in the words huckstergamestertricksterpunster.

The ending -ess is added to many words without changing the ending of the masculine; as,—

  • baron—baroness
  • count—countess
  • lion—lioness
  • Jew—Jewess
  • heir—heiress
  • host—hostess
  • priest—priestess
  • giant—giantess

Masculine ending dropped.

The masculine ending may be dropped before the feminine -ess is added; as,—

  • abbot—abbess
  • murderer—murderess
  • sorcerer—sorceress

Vowel dropped before adding -ess.

The feminine may discard a vowel which appears in the masculine; as in—

  • actor—actress
  • master—mistress
  • benefactor—benefactress
  • emperor—empress
  • tiger—tigress
  • enchanter—enchantress

Empress has been cut down from emperice (twelfth century) and emperesse (thirteenth century), from Latin imperatricem.

Master and mistress were in Middle English maistermaistresse, from the Old French maistremaistresse.

When the older -en and -ster went out of use as the distinctive mark of the feminine, the ending -ess, from the French -esse, sprang into a popularity much greater than at present.

Instead of saying doctressfosteresswagoness, as was said in the sixteenth century, or servauntesseteacheresseneighboressefrendesse, as in the fourteenth century, we have dispensed with the ending in many cases, and either use a prefix word or leave the masculine to do work for the feminine also.

Thus, we say doctor (masculine and feminine) or woman doctorteacher or lady teacherneighbor (masculine and feminine), etc. We frequently use such words as authoreditorchairman, to represent persons of either sex.

NOTE.—There is perhaps this distinction observed: when we speak of a female as an active agent merely, we use the masculine termination, as, "George Eliot is the author of 'Adam Bede;'" but when we speak purposely to denote a distinction from a male, we use the feminine, as, "George Eliot is an eminent authoress."
III. Gender shown by Different Words.

III. Gender shown by Different Words.

In some of these pairs, the feminine and the masculine are entirely different words; others have in their origin the same root. Some of them have an interesting history, and will be noted below:—

  • bachelor—maid
  • boy—girl
  • brother—sister
  • drake—duck
  • earl—countess
  • father—mother
  • gander—goose
  • hart—roe
  • horse—mare
  • husband—wife
  • king—queen
  • lord—lady
  • wizard—witch
  • nephew—niece
  • ram—ewe
  • sir—madam
  • son—daughter
  • uncle—aunt
  • bull—cow
  • boar—sow

Girl originally meant a child of either sex, and was used for male or female until about the fifteenth century.

Drake is peculiar in that it is formed from a corresponding feminine which is no longer used. It is not connected historically with our word duck, but is derived from ened (duck) and an obsolete suffix rake (king). Three letters of ened have fallen away, leaving our word drake.

Gander and goose were originally from the same root word. Goose has various cognate forms in the languages akin to English (German Gans, Icelandic gás, Danish gaas, etc.). The masculine was formed by adding -a, the old sign of the masculine. This gansa was modified into gan-ragand-ra, finally gander; the d being inserted to make pronunciation easy, as in many other words.

Mare, in Old English mere, had the masculine mearh (horse), but this has long been obsolete.

Husband and wife are not connected in origin. Husband is a Scandinavian word (Anglo-Saxon hūsbonda from Icelandic hús-bóndi, probably meaning house dweller); wife was used in Old and Middle English to mean woman in general.

King and queen are said by some (Skeat, among others) to be from the same root word, but the German etymologist Kluge says they are not.

Lord is said to be a worn-down form of the Old English hlāf-weard (loaf keeper), written loverdlhauerd, or lauerd in Middle English. Lady is from hlœ̄̄fdige (hlœ̄̄f meaning loaf, and dige being of uncertain origin and meaning).

Witch is the Old English wicce, but wizard is from the Old French guiscart (prudent), not immediately connected with witch, though both are ultimately from the same root.

Sir is worn down from the Old French sire (Latin senior). Madam is the French ma dame, from Latin mea domina.Two masculines from feminines.

Besides gander and drake, there are two other masculine words that were formed from the feminine:—

Bridegroom, from Old English brȳd-guma (bride's man). The r in groom has crept in from confusion with the word groom.

Widower, from the weakening of the ending -a in Old English to -e in Middle English. The older forms, widuwawiduwe, became identical, and a new masculine ending was therefore added to distinguish the masculine from the feminine (compare Middle English widuerwidewe).



Personal pronouns are inflected thus:—

Poss.mine, myour, ours
Old FormCommon Form.
Poss.thine, thyyour, yours
Poss.your, yoursyour, yours
Poss.hisher, hersits
Plur. of all Three.
Poss.their, theirs


Most of the words how to be considered are capable of a double use,—they may be pure modifiers of nouns, or they may stand for nouns. In the first use they are adjectives; in the second they retain an adjective meaning, but have lost their adjective use. Primarily they are adjectives, but in this function, or use, they are properly classed as adjective pronouns.

The following are some examples of these:—

Some say that the place was bewitched.—Irving.That mysterious realm where each shall takeHis chamber in the silent halls of death.—Bryant.How happy is he born or taughtThat serveth not another's will.—Wotton

That is more than any martyr can stand.—Emerson.

Hence these words are like adjectives used as nouns, which we have seen in such expressions as, "The dead are there;" that is, a word, in order to be an adjective pronoun, must not modify any word, expressed or understood. It must come under the requirement of pronouns, and stand for a noun. For instance, in the following sentences—"The cubes are of stainless ivory, and on each is written, in letters of gold, 'Truth;'" "You needs must play such pranks as these;" "They will always have one bank to sun themselves upon, and another to get cool under;" "Where two men ride on a horse, one must ride behind"—the words italicized modify nouns understood, necessarily thought of: thus, in the first, "each cube;" in the second, "these pranks," in the others, "another bank," "one man."

Adjective pronouns are divided into three classes:—

(1) DEMONSTRATIVE PRONOUNS, such as thisthatthe former, etc.

(2) DISTRIBUTIVE PRONOUNS, such as eacheitherneither, etc.

(3) NUMERAL PRONOUNS, as someanyfewmanynoneall, etc.


quarta-feira, 17 de abril de 2019


According to form, verbs are strong or weak.

strong verb forms its past tense by changing the vowel of the present tense form, but adds no ending; as, runrandrivedrove.

weak verb always adds an ending to the present to form the past tense, and may or may not change the vowel: as, begbeggedlaylaidsleepsleptcatchcaught.



NOTE. Some of these also have weak forms, which are in parentheses

Present Tense.Past Tense.Past Participle.
awakeawoke (awaked)awoke (awaked)
bearboreborne (active)born (passive)
bidbade, bidbidden, bid
bindboundbound,[adj. bounden]
bitebitbitten, bit
chidechidchidden, chid
cleaveclove, clave (cleft)cloven (cleft)
climb[clomb] climbedclimbed
crowcrew (crowed)(crowed)
drinkdrankdrunk, drank[adj. drunken]
eatate, eateaten, eat
getgotgot [gotten]
hanghung (hanged)hung (hanged)
shearshore (sheared)shorn (sheared)
shrinkshrank or shrunkshrunk
singsang or sungsung
sinksank or sunksunk [adj. sunken]
sitsat [sate]sat
slideslidslidden, slid
springsprang, sprungsprung
stavestove (staved)(staved)
stinkstunk, stankstunk
strikestruckstruck, stricken
swimswam or swumswum
thrivethrove (thrived)thriven (thrived)
treadtrodtrodden, trod



In addition to the above inflected forms, there are many periphrastic or compound forms, made up of auxiliaries with the infinitives and participles. Some of these have been indicated in Sec. 240, (2).

The ordinary tenses yet to be spoken of are made up as follows:—

(1) Future tense, by using shall and will with the simple or root form of the verb; as, "I shall be," "He will choose."

(2) Present perfectpast perfectfuture perfect, tenses, by placing havehad, and shall (or willhave before the past participle of any verb; as, "I have gone" (present perfect), "I had gone" (past perfect), "I shall have gone" (future perfect).

(3) The definite form of each tense, by using auxiliaries with the imperfect participle active; as, "I am running," "They had been running."

(4) The passive forms, by using the forms of the verb be before the past participle of verbs; as, "I was chosen," "You are chosen."

The following scheme will show how rich our language is in verb phrases to express every variety of meaning. Only the third person, singular number, of each tense, will be given.


Imperative Mood.

Present tense.(2d per.)Be chosen.

Also, in affirmative sentences, the indicative present and past tenses have emphatic forms made up of do and did with the infinitive or simple form; as, "He does strike," "He did strike."

[Note to Teacher.—This table is not to be learned now; if learned at all, it should be as practice work on strong and weak verb forms. Exercises should be given, however, to bring up sentences containing such of these conjugation forms as the pupil will find readily in literature.]

Conjugation of Shall and Will as Auxiliaries (with Choose).

To express simply expected action:—

1. I shall choose.I shall be chosen.
2. You will choose.You will be chosen.
3. [He] will choose.[He] will be chosen.
1. We shall choose.We shall be chosen.
2. You will choose.You will be chosen.
3. [They] will choose.[They] will be chosen.

To express determination, promise, etc.:—

1. I will choose.I will be chosen.
2. You shall choose.You shall be chosen.
3. [He] shall choose.[He] shall be chosen.
1. We will choose.1. We will be chosen.
2. You shall choose.2. You shall be chosen.
3. [They] shall choose.3. [They] shall be chosen.



Articles are either definite or indefinite.

The is the definite article, since it points out a particular individual, or group, or class.

An or a is the indefinite article, because it refers to any one of a group or class of things.

An and a are different forms of the same word, the older ān.

The most common use of the definite article is to refer to an object that the listener or reader is already acquainted with; as in the sentence,—

Don't you remember how, when the dragon was infesting the neighborhood of Babylon, the citizens used to walk dismally out of evenings, and look at the valleys round about strewed with the bones?—Thackeray.

NOTE.—This use is noticed when, on opening a story, a person is introduced by a, and afterwards referred to by the:—

By and by a giant came out of the dark north, and lay down on the ice near Audhumla.... The giant frowned when he saw the glitter of the golden hair.—Heroes Of Asgard.

The is often prefixed to the names of rivers; and when the word river is omitted, as "the Mississippi," "the Ohio," the article indicates clearly that a river, and not a state or other geographical division, is referred to.

No wonder I could face the Mississippi with so much courage supplied to me.—Thackeray.

The Dakota tribes, doubtless, then occupied the country southwest of the Missouri.—G. Bancroft.

The most frequent use of the indefinite article is to denote any one of a class or group of objects: consequently it belongs to singular words; as in the sentence,—

Near the churchyard gate stands a poor-box, fastened to a post by iron bands and secured by a padlock, with a sloping wooden roof to keep off the rain.—Longfellow

When the indefinite article precedes proper names, it alters them to class names. The qualities or attributes of the object are made prominent, and transferred to any one possessing them; as,—

The vulgar riot and debauchery, which scarcely disgraced an Alcibiades or a Cæsar, have been exchanged for the higher ideals of a Bayard or a Sydney.—Pearson



As has been said, pronominal adjectives are primarily pronouns; but, when they modify words instead of referring to them as antecedents, they are changed to adjectives. They are of two kinds,—RELATIVE and INTERROGATIVE,—and are used to join sentences or to ask questions, just as the corresponding pronouns do.

The RELATIVE ADJECTIVES are which and what; for example,—

It matters not what rank he has, what revenues or garnitures. —Carlyle.

The silver and laughing Xenil, careless what lord should possess the banks that bloomed by its everlasting course.—Bulwer.

The taking of which bark. I verily believe, was the ruin of every mother's son of us.—Kingsley.

In which evil strait Mr. Oxenham fought desperately.—Id.

The INDEFINITE RELATIVE adjectives are whatwhateverwhatsoeverwhicheverwhichsoever. Examples of their use are,—

He in his turn tasted some of its flavor, which, make what sour mouths he would for pretense, proved not altogether displeasing to him.—Lamb.

Whatever correction of our popular views from insight, nature will be sure to bear us out in.—Emerson.

Whatsoever kind of man he is, you at least give him full authority over your son.—Ruskin.

Was there, as it rather seemed, a circle of ominous shadow moving along with his deformity, whichever way he turned himself?—Hawthorne.New torments I behold, and new tormentedAround me, whichsoever way I move,And whichsoever way I turn, and gaze.—Longfellow (From Dante).

The INTERROGATIVE ADJECTIVES are which and what. They may be used in direct and indirect questions. As in the pronouns, which is selective among what is known; what inquires about things or persons not known.In direct questions.

Sentences with which and what in direct questions:—

Which debt must I pay first, the debt to the rich, or the debt to the poor?—Emerson.

But when the Trojan war comes, which side will you take? —Thackeray.

But what books in the circulating library circulate?—Lowell.What beckoning ghost along the moonlight shadeInvites my steps, and points to yonder glade?—Pope.In indirect questions.

Sentences with which and what in indirect questions:—

His head...looked like a weathercock perched upon his spindle neck to tell which way the wind blew.—Irving.

A lady once remarked, he [Coleridge] could never fix which side of the garden walk would suit him best.—Carlyle.

He was turned before long into all the universe, where it was uncertain what game you would catch, or whether any.—Id.

At what rate these materials would be distributed and precipitated in regular strata, it is impossible to determine.—Agassiz.

In exclamatory expressions, what (or what a) has a force somewhat like a descriptive adjective. It is neither relative nor interrogative, but might be called an EXCLAMATORY ADJECTIVE; as,—

Oh, what a revolution! and what a heart must I have, to contemplate without emotion that elevation and that fall!—Burke.

What a piece of work is man!—Shakespeare.

And yet, alas, the making of it right, what a business for long time to come!—Carlyle

Through what hardships it may attain to bear a sweet fruit!—Thoreau.

Exercise.—Find ten sentences containing pronominal adjectives.



Adjectives of quantity tell how much or how many. They have these three subdivisions:

(1) QUANTITY IN BULK: such words as littlemuchsomenoanyconsiderable, sometimes small, joined usually to singular nouns to express an indefinite measure of the thing spoken of.

How much.

The following examples are from Kingsley:—So he parted with much weeping of the lady.Which we began to do with great labor and little profit.Because I had some knowledge of surgery and blood-letting.But ever she looked on Mr. Oxenham, and seemed to take nocare as long as he was by.

Examples of small an adjective of quantity:—

"The deil's in it but I bude to anger him!" said the woman, and walked away with a laugh of small satisfaction.—Macdonald.

'Tis midnight, but small thoughts have I of sleep.—Coleridge.

It gives small idea of Coleridge's way of talking.—Carlyle.

When someanyno, are used with plural nouns, they come under the next division of adjectives.How many.

(2) QUANTITY IN NUMBER, which may be expressed exactly by numbers or remotely designated by words expressing indefinite amounts. Hence the natural division into—

(aDefinite numerals; as, "one blaze of musketry;" "He found in the pathway fourteen Spaniards;" "I have lost one brother, but I have gained fourscore;" "a dozen volunteers."

(bIndefinite numerals, as the following from Kingsley: "We gave several thousand pounds for it;" "In came some five and twenty more, and with them a few people;" "Then we wandered for many days;" "Amyas had evidently more schemes in his head;" "He had lived by hunting for some months;" "That light is far too red to be the reflection of any beams of hers."Single ones of any number of changes.

(3) DISTRIBUTIVE NUMERALS, which occupy a place midway between the last two subdivisions of numeral adjectives; for they are indefinite in telling how many objects are spoken of, but definite in referring to the objects one at a time. Thus,—

Every town had its fair; every village, its wake.—Thackeray.

An arrow was quivering in each body.—Kingsley.

Few on either side but had their shrewd scratch to show.—Id.Before I taught my tongue to woundMy conscience with a sinful sound,Or had the black art to dispenseA several sin to every sense.—Vaughan.

Exercise.—Bring up sentences with ten adjectives of quantity.

segunda-feira, 15 de abril de 2019


1This large class includes several kinds of words:—

(1) SIMPLE ADJECTIVES expressing quality; such as safehappydeepfairrashbeautifulremotestterrible, etc.

(2) COMPOUND ADJECTIVES, made up of various words thrown together to make descriptive epithets. Examples are, "Heaven-derived power," "this life-giving book," "his spirit wrapt and wonder-struck," "ice-cold water," "half-dead traveler," "unlooked-for burden," "next-door neighbor," "ivory-handled pistols," "the cold-shudder-inspiring Woman in White."

(3) PROPER ADJECTIVES, derived from proper nouns; such as, "an old English manuscript," "the Christian pearl of charity," "the well-curb had a Chinese roof," "the Roman writer Palladius."

(4) PARTICIPIAL ADJECTIVES, which are either pure participles used to describe, or participles which have lost all verbal force and have no function except to express quality. Examples are,—

Pure participial adjectives: "The healing power of the Messiah," "The shattering sway of one strong arm," "trailing clouds," "The shattered squares have opened into line," "It came on like the rolling simoom," "God tempers the wind to the shorn lamb."

Faded participial adjectives: "Sleep is a blessed thing;" "One is hungry, and another is drunken;" "under the fitting drapery of the jagged and trailing clouds;" "The clearness and quickness are amazing;" "an aged man;" "a charming sight."

Care is needed, in studying these last-named words, to distinguish between a participle that forms part of a verb, and a participle or participial adjective that belongs to a noun.

For instance: in the sentence, "The work was well and rapidly accomplished," was accomplished is a verb; in this, "No man of his day was more brilliant or more accomplished," was is the verb, and accomplished is an adjective.


1. Bring up sentences with twenty descriptive adjectives, having some of each subclass named in Sec. 143.

2. Is the italicized word an adjective in this?—

The old sources of intellectual excitement seem to be well-nigh exhausted.