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sons is a grammarian, and a logician. This inversion of the order of a sentence is, perhaps, the best criterion of the connexion of its parts; and proves that the former, though forming complete sense of itself, is modified by the latter. Thus, in the phrases, Christ died for him, because he died for all—Many things are believed, though they exceed the capacity of our wits.
In these phrases, if we do but transpose the noun and pronoun, and invert the order, the sentences will be perfectly the same in sense, and the connexion will be more apparent; as, Because Christ died for all, he died for him-Though many things exceed the capacity of our wits, they are believed.
Wherever, therefore, this transposition can take place, we may be certain of a necessary connexion in the sense, and that the principal pause lies between the two parts.
The principal pause in the loose sentence.
RULE. III. Every loose sentence must consist of a period, either direct or inverted, and an additional member which does not modify it; and, consequently, this species of sentence requires a pause between the principal constructive parts of the period, and between the period and the additional member.
Persons of good taste expect to be pleased, at the same time they are informed; and think that the best sense always deserves the best language.
In this sentence an inverted period is constructed at the word informed; which requires a pause at pleased,
because here the former part of the sentence is modified by the latter and a pause is required at informed, because here another member commences.
take another example.
The soul, considered abstractly from its passions, is of a remiss and sedentary nature; slow in its resolves, and languishing in its executions.
Spectator, No. 255.
Here a direct period is formed at nature, the principal constructive parts of this period separate at passions; and here must be the larger pause: the succeeding members are only additional, and require a larger pause between them and the period they belong to, and a smaller pause between each other at resolves.
The subordinate pause in the compact sentence.
Having given an idea of the principal pause in a sentence, it will be necessary to say something of the subordinate pauses, which may all be comprehended under what is called the short pause.
And first it may be observed, that by the long pause is not meant a pause of any determinate length, but the longest pause in the sentence. Thus, the pause between the nominative and the verb in the following
The great and invincible Alexander, wept for the fate of Darius.
The pause here, I say, may be called the long pause, though not half so long as the pause between the two principal constructive parts in the following sentence:
If impudence prevailed as much in the forum and courts of justice, as insolence does in the country and places of less resort; Aulus Cæcina would submit as much to the impudence of Sextus Æbutius in this cause, as he did before to his insolence when assaulted by him.
Here the pause between the words resort and Aulus Cacina may be called the long pause, not so much from its duration, as from its being the principal pause in the sentence: the long pause, therefore, must always be understood relatively to the smaller pauses : and it may pass for a good general rule, that the prin cipal pause is longer, or shorter, according to the simplicity or complexity of the sentence. See page 56.
RULE IV. The subordinate pauses are easily distinguished in such sentences as consist of parts, corresponding to parts, as in the last example; where we may observe, that the whole sentence readily divides itself into two principal constructive parts at resort: the first part as readily divides into two subordinate parts at justice; and the last, into two other subordinate parts at cause; and these are all the pauses necessary. But if, either from the necessity of drawing breath, or of more strongly enforcing every part of this sentence, we were to admit of more pauses than these, it cannot be denied, that, for this purpose, some places more readily admit of a pause than others: if, for instance, the first subordinate part were to admit of two pauses, they could no where be so suitably placed as at impudence and forum; if the next might be overpointed in the same manner, the points would be less unsuitable at does and country, than at any other words; in the same manner, a pause might be more tolerable at Cæcina and Æbutius, and at before and insolence, than in any other of the subordinate parts of the latter division of this sentence.
The parts of loose sentences which admit of the short pause must be determined by the same principles. If this sentence has been properly defined, it is
a sentence consisting of a clause containing perfect sense, followed by an additional clause which does not modify it. Thus, in the following example:
Foolish men are more apt to consider what they have lost, than what they possess; and to turn their eyes on those who are richer than themselves, rather than on those who are under greater difficulties.
Here a perfect sentence is formed at possess, and here must be the longest pause, as it intervenes between two parts nearly independent: the principal pause in the first member of this sentence, which, respecting the whole sentence, may be called a subordinate pause, is at lost, and that of the last member, at themselves; if, for the sake of precision, other and shorter pauses were admitted, it should seem most suitable to admit them at men and consider in the first member, at eyes and those in the first part of the second member, and at those in the last. In these observations, however, it must be carefully understood, that this multiplicity of shorter pauses is not recommended as necessary or proper, but only as possible, and to be admitted occasionally and to draw the line as much as possible between what is necessary and unnecessary, we shall endeavour to bring together such particular cases as demand the short pause, and those where it cannot be omitted without hurting either the sense or the delivery.
RULE V. When a nominative consists of more than one word, it is necessary to pause after it.
When a nominative and a verb come in a sentence, unattended by adjuncts, no pause is necessary, either for the ear or understanding; thus in the following sentence: Alexander wept :-no pause intervenes be
tween these words, because they convey only two ideas, which are apprehended the moment they are pronounced; but if these words are amplified by adjuncts of specifications, as in the following sentence: The great and invincible Alexander, wept for the fate of Darius. Here a pause is necessary between these words, not only that the organs may pronounce the whole with more ease, but that the complex nominative and verb may, by being separately and distinctly exhibited, be more readily and distinctly conceived.*
This rule is so far from being unnecessary, when we are obliged to pause after the verb, that it then becomes more essential.
This account of party patches will, I am afraid, appear improbable to those who live at a distance from the fashionable world.
Addison's Spect. No. 81.
If in this sentence we only pause at will, as marked by the printer, we shall find the verb swallowed up as it were by the nominative case, and confounded with it; but if we make a short pause, both before
* It is not a little astonishing that so acute a grammarian as Beauzée should make the propriety of a pause in this case depend, not on the necessity of distinguishing parts more or less connected, but on the necessity of breathing. If the sense is impaired by a pause, a pause is absolutely inadmissible in the longest as well as the shortest sentence; but if a pause between the nominative and the verb, where the nominative consists of many words, does not injure the sense, but rather clears and strengthens it, we may safely pronounce that a pause between every complex nominative and verb is not only admissible but necessary.
His examples of sentences where we may pause, and where we may not, are the following:
L'homme injuste ne voit la mort que comme un fantôme affreux. Theor. des Sent. chap. 14.
La venue des faux Christs, et des faux prophêtes, sembloit être un plus prochain acheminement à la dernière ruine. Bossuet Disc. sur l'Hist. Univ. P. II.
But if the foregoing observations are just, a pause in speaking is quite as admissible at injuste as at prophétes: for, to use his own words-C'est une erreur sensible, de faire de pendre le degré d' affinité de phrases de leur plus ou moins d'étendue; un atome tient aussi peu à un autre atome qu'une montagne à une montagne. Gram. Generale, vol. ii. p. 592.