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Of arts that polish life, inventors rare,
Unmindful of their Maker, though his spirit
Taught them; but they his gifts acknowledged none."

No object would be served in transposing this pasage from Book xi. of Paradise Lost ; it is entirely a matter for the exercise of individual taste. Every one, especially the teacher, is aware of the necessity of attending closely to rhetorical construction, and to the study of standard poetical works, such as that from which the preceding passage is extracted.

ENGLISH LANGUAGE.

SECTION I.

1. What is the earliest language of Great Britain of

which we have any knowledge? What language succeeded, and what others have become incorpo

rated with the latter ? 2. In what parts of England did the ancient language

longest survive; and where in Great Britain is it

still spoken? 3. Give the derivations of the conjunctions "if”. unless".

"_" since”—“lest”-and state the reasons for your opinion,

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SECTION II. 1. To what family of languages does the Welsh belong,

and in what other peoples' are kindred forms of

speech prevalent? 2. Put the following into modern phrase :“I had as lief not be as live to be

In awe of such a thing as I myself.”“For which they were as glad of his commynge

As foule is faine when ye sonne upryseth.” Belike they had some notice of the people

How I had moved them."
Explain and derive the words in italics.

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“ ton"

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3. Account for the following terminations of names

of places : -“ caster, “chester," “don,"
“ley," leigh,” “ly,” wick," bergh,"
“burgh," "bury," "borough," "field," “ feld,”
“by,' bey," “kirk, “hythe," combe,”
thorp," "fold,” wold," "toft

– and give instances to illustrate your opinion.

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SECTION III. 1. By what historical events has the composition of our

language been chiefly influenced ? 2. What are the principal metres in which our best

poets have written? Give instances of each.

Section IV. 1. Mention any books that you conceive to have had a

greater influence than others upon our language. 2. Give some account of the life and writings of any

one of these writers—viz., Chaucer, Shakspeare, Bacon, Milton, Hooker, Addison, Samuel Johnson, Cowper, Walter Scott.

SECTION 1.

1. “What is the earliest language of Great Britain of which we have any knowledge ?

What language succeeded, and what others have become incorporated with the latter ?

The earliest language of which historical records make mention as having been spoken in Britain, is that which we call Welsh, and which the Welsh call Cymreig, or the language of the Cymry. It is a Celtic dialect, having many points of affinity and identity with the Gaelic,

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Irish, Manks, and Armoric. It was displaced by the Anglo-Saxon, the basis of modern English, whose other constituents are French, Latin, Greek, and a few foreign words introduced by political, commercial, or literary intercourse."

2. “In what parts of England did the ancient language longest survive; and where in Great Britain is it still spoken?”

Cornwall, Cumberland, and the western part of the Welsh Marches—but especially Cornwall-retained, till comparatively recent times many traces of the language of the Aboriginal Celtic population of our island. It still survives as the vernacular tongue of the inhabitants of Wales, but is becoming slowly supplanted by English.

3. “Give the derivations of the conjunctions if' - unless' - since'-lest '—and state the reasons for your opinion.”

If is from gif (the Saxon imperative of the verb gifan, to give), signifying grant, allow, give. In using if we claim a concession as the condition on which the proposition rests which we are about to enunciate.

Unless is from onles (imperative of onlesan), signifying dismiss, except. Its synonyme is except—i.e., put aside, or leave out.

Since is derived from siner or syne (perfect participle of seon, to see), and signifies seeing, or seen.

Lest is from leas (perfect participle of lesan), signifying dismissed, that less.

SECTION II. 1. “To what family of languages does the Welsh belong, and in what other peoples' are kindred forms of speech prevalent?" .

See answer to question 1. section i.

2. Put the following into modern phrase :(a){ "

In awe of such a thing as myself.' (6) {

“For which they were as glad of his commynge

As foule is faine when ye sonne upryseth.' (c) {

Belike they had some notice of the people

How I had moved them." (d) “ Explain and derive the words in italics. (a) I would as willingly not be (or live) as live, &c.

| For which they were as glad of his coming

(6) { .

(c) Probably they had some notice, &c.
As is from Ger., als (Pers. asa), like, similar.

Lief is pure Saxon, meaning, literally, loved dear, beloved ; its conventional meaning is, gladly, willingly, freely.

Is is pure Saxon of the same import as in English.

Faine is from Saxon fagan, to rejoice; its common signification is, glad, pleased, rejoiced.

Belike is from the Saxon prefix be, meaning by, and lic, similar, or like. Hence, belike, now obsolete, signifies, by likelihood, probably, perhaps.

“ Account for the following termination of names of places:-caster,''chester,' * don,? 'ton,' 'ley' 'leigh,' ly,' 'wick,' 'bergh,' 'burgh,' 'bury,' 'borough, 'field,' 'feld,' 'by,' 'bey,' 'kirk,' 'hythe,'

''combe,' 'thorp,' 'fold,' 'wold,' 'toft'—and give instances to illustrate your meaning." “ Caster" and " chester

are from castra (Latin, a camp); and names of places with these terminations have been the sites of Roman military stations-e.g., Doncaster, Manchester, &c.

3.

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