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ETYMOLOGY AND SYNTAX
THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE.
FOR ADVANCED GRAMMAR GRADES, AND FOR HIGH SCHOOLS,
BY WILLIAM SWINTON,
NEW YOXA SINE Livory
FEB 26 1932
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1877, by
HARPER & BROTHERS,
In the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington.
This text-book of English Grammar forms the advanced manual of Harper's “New Language Series,” and is designed for study in connection with the author's New School Composition.* In a graded course on the English language it is intended to fill the place of the book known as the Progressive Grammar. That, in such a course, it will fill that place in a manner more satisfactory than the work just named may reasonably be hoped from the considerations adduced in the following paragraphs.
At the time when the Progressive Grammar was first published (1872), it had become a conviction in the minds of many thoughtful teachers and others that English grammar, as set forth in books and taught in schools, was failing to accomplish its avowed end, namely, " to teach the art of speaking and writing the English language with propriety." The Progressive Grammar was an attempt to break loose from the shackles of purely technical grammar -to strip it of fruitless formalism, and to introduce the constructive element. It may be remarked that the author's views did not then extend beyond that one book. Soon after, however, the experience of the school-room led the author to believe—as a like experience was leading many others to believe
that a method of language
* Both treatises may be had bound in one volume, under the title “Swin. . ton's English Grammar and Compositions."
training quite different from that mainly in vogue was necessary : there arose, in fact, the thought of language as one thing, and of grammar as another thing; and in this view it seemed that a suitable apparatus of elementary instruction was yet to be supplied. This conviction took shape in the books known as Lan guage. Primer, Language Lessons, and School Composition.
In the meantime, contemporaneously with the appearance of the successive books of the “ Language Series,” there came about a broadening and readjustment of the scheme of language-study in the public schools. The necessity of a progressive and graduated course of training in the mother-tongue, extending over some years, and beginning in practice and ending in theory, is now generally recognized and acted on; so that, a considerable uniformity in the programme and method of English study being attained, it seems possible to adapt our book-apparatus to the work to be done in our schools.
It is with the view of accomplishing this purpose that a thorough remodelling of Harper's “Language Series” has been made. It is . thought that the books now form a closely connected series, embodying a progressive course of development, the outline of which may be thus set forth :
1. LANGUAGE PRIMER—mainly practice.
composition) in about equal proportion.
} the two studies differentiated,
but simultaneously pursued.
In the remodelled series, the present text-book forms the Grammar, pure and simple. It presupposes a certain amount of previous training in the theory and practice of English-presupposes, at least, the amount of knowledge obtainable from Swinton's Language Lessons, or from a similar book; and its specific place in the cur
riculum is to be found in the advanced grammar grades of our public schools, though the book is also suited to the wants of high schools and academies. It is earnestly recommended that the Grammar be taken in connection with the School Composition, the author's ideal of the distribution of study being: three grammar lessons and two composition lessons per week.
The method and the matter of the book are both so obvious that teachers will discover its scope and character by simply turning over the leaves : hence no detailed exhibit of the plan seems to be called for here. The author would state in a single sentence that his aim has been to set forth, in the light of the latest linguistic scholarship, the etymology and the syntax of the English language-to make a logical, systematic, and well-ordered presentation of this great subject, with a view both to intellectual development, or wit-sharp ening, and to the attainment of a fair mastery of the art of speaking and writing our tongue. Very great care has been taken to make it a working class-book; and particular attention is called to the sum. maries, topical analyses, and written reviews. For the higher study of English, in its historical and comparative aspects, a good amount of material will be found in the Appendix, pages 237–252. ·
In the preparation of this text-book the author has handled several hundred English grammars, all of which have been sugo gestive in one way or other. He must, however, acknowledge his indebtedness throughout to the great German works of Maetzner and of Koch, and to the English grammars of Morris, Ernest Adams, Bain, Mulligan, and Mason. It will perhaps not be amiss to credit to these storehouses all that is best in the material of this text-book; its architecture the author claims as his own.
New YORK, August, 1877.