Images de page




which it, or its root, originally bore. See Whateley, Logic, iii. s 14. Compare $$ 445, 461.

406. The usual desinition given of an Adverb is to this effect :

An Adverb is a word used to qualify verbs, adjectives, or other adverbs.'

But a distinction is set up between two kinds of adverbs :(1) Simple Adverbs, (2) Relative or Conjunctive Adverbs.

(1) A Simple Adverb qualifies the word with which it is used: “They came yesterday,' 'He is always ready.' Here the definition is immediately applicable.

(2) A Relative or Conjunctive Adverb is said to be one which not only qualifies the word with which it is used, but also serves to connect clauses in a sentence: as, ' He comes when he likes.'

In the present chapter we shall confine our attention to Simple Adverbs, reserving the second class for consideration in Chapter XIV.

407. A question may arise, how we ought to treat those sentences, where an adverb is used with a verb which merely expresses existence : as, 'he is well,'' he is asleep.' It may be asked, for example, whether the word well is here an adverb or an adjective. In the English language, this word is so far adverbial, that it cannot be used to qualify a substantive: we cannot say a well man,' any more than we can say

an asleep man.' Yet these words stand in the place of predicates, and have the force of adjectives. We may allow that they are adverbs used as predicates : see $$ 5, 6. But after all, this is only another proof how difficult it is to draw a sharp line between the various parts of speech.

In Greek, an adverb placed between an article and a noun, or with the article alone, has the force of an adjective. A similar construction is sometimes found in English : as,

Our then dictator,
Whom with all praise I point at, saw him fight.

Coriolanus, ii. 2.
Drink no longer water, but use a little wine, for thy

stomach's sake, and thine often infirmities.—1 Timothy,


v. 23.

[ocr errors]

408. Many adverbs are formed from adjectives, nouns, and pronouns.

1. Adverbs derived from Adjectives. We saw, $$ 22, 23, that some adjectives appear to be used adverbially, having lost the final e, which in Anglo-Saxon was the distinctive mark of an adverb formed from an adjective. These are chiefly words of Anglo-Saxon origin: as, clean, fast, hard, ill, late, long, loud, right, sore, soft, thick, wide, wrong. We shall discuss these severally.

We also saw the origin of the termination -ly, which, though originally the mark of an adjective, came to be regarded as an adverbial suffix. In Anglo-Saxon -lic was an adjective termination, and -lice an adverbial. We have still in English some adjectives ending in -ly, as god-ly, love-ly, lone-ly; and to these we cannot add another -ly to form adverbs. The word "godly' has an adverbial force in the phrase, 'to live soberly, righteously, and godly.'

409. We shall now consider those words, in which the adjective and adverbial forms coincide, in modern English: clean. A.-S. clæn, adjective; clæne, adverb. The ad

verbial use of clean, in the sense of entirely,' is found

in the authorised version of the Scriptures : as,
Is his


ever, doth his promise fail for evermore?—Psalm lxxvii. 8.

The same usage still prevails in some provincial dialects. fast. A.-S. fæst, adjective; fæste, adverb. The English

fast is used as an adjective and an adverb: 'It was

fast,' 'He ran fast.' hard. A.-S. heard, adjective; hearde, adverb. In English,

hard is an adjective, and both hard and hardly are adverbs, but with a difference of meaning. Hard means 'with force or severity,' as, 'He hits hard ;' but hardly means scurcely. Some persons, wishing to be accurate, say, 'He hits hardly,' meaning ‘He hits hard.' But He hits hardly' might mean “He scarcely

hits.' ill or evil. A.-S. yfel, adjective; yfele, adverb. In English,

evil and ill are used as adjectives; and ill as an adverb. The form evilly is sometimes found, but is not generally approved.




[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


late. A.-S. læt or lat, adjective; læte or late, adverb. The

English late is used as an adjective, and as an adverb:
• He was late,' 'He came late. The form lately is

used in the sense of recently.'
long. A.-S. lang or long, adjective; lange or longe, adverb.

In English the form longly is never used. loud. A.-S. hlud, adjective; hlude, adverb. The English

loud is used as an adjective, and as an adverb: as,

Curses, not loud, but deep.-Macbeth, v. 3.

And the singers sang loud. Nehemiah xii. 42.
The three forms loud, aloud, and loudly, are used

as adverbs :
right. A.-S. riht, adjective; rihte, adverb. In English,

the forms right, aright, and rightly are used as adverbs. soft. A.-S. seft or soft, adjective; sefte or softe, adverb. In

poetry, the adverbial use of soft is common : as, ' And
soft he said,'• Soft sighed the flute.' In prose, softly

is more common.
sore. A.-S. sur, sore, painful,' adjective; sare, sorely,

painfully,' adverb. In older English, sore is used ad

verbially: as, 'He wept sore.' thick. A.-S. thic, adjective; thicce, adverb. In English,

the forms thick and thickly are used as adverbs. wide. A.-S. wid, adjective; wide, adverb. The word is used as an adverb in this

passage: Is

my lord well, that he doth speak so wide ?--Much

Ado, iv. 1.
wrong. Horne Tooke derives this word from wrung, the

participle of the verb wring, and explains it wrung or
wrested from the right" or " ordered " line of con-
duct.' See Diversions of Purley, ii. 91, 101. Mr.
Wedgwood, in his Dictionary of English Etymology,
gives a similar explanation. He says wrong is what
is wrung or turned aside from the right or straight
way to the desired end.' He compares the Danish
to twist;' vrang, "wrong ;

and Old Norse
rangr, ‘wry,''crooked,'' unjust.'
Wrong is used adverbially in the following passages :-

Portia. You must take your chance ;
And either not attempt to choose at all,


[ocr errors]





Or swear, before

you choose, if you choose wrong,
Never to speak to lady afterward
In way of marriage; therefore be advised.

Merchant of Venice, ii. 1.

In choosing wrong,
I lose your company.

Ibid. iii. 2.


[ocr errors]

2. Adverbs derived from Nouns. 410. In many languages, nouns in an oblique case are used as adverbs. For example, the noun home is used adverbially, in the literal sense, "to go home' (aller à la maison), and in a figurative sense, to denote thoroughly,' entirely; as, Cloten. Where is she, sir ?

Come nearer ;
No further halting ; satisfy me home
What is become of her,

Cymbeline, iii. 5.
Imogen. That confirms it home :
This is Pisanio's deed, and Cloten’s.

Ibid. iv. 2. It is true that our home appears to be the same in form as the nominative home. But a reference to the Latin shows the distinction. The nominative in Latin is domus, but our home answers to the accusative domum, and our at home to domi.

Vossius observes of domi focique in Terence, Eunuchus, act iv. scene 7, that 'without doubt they are genitives used adverbially.' And Donatus goes further, calling not only these genitives, but accusatives and ablatives, adverbs. He thinks that Rome, Romam, Româ, ignorantly considered nouns, are adverbs of place : 'Romæ, Romam, Roma, sunt adverbia loci, quæ imprudentes putant nomina. In loco, ut sum Rome; de loco, ut Româ venio; ad locum, ut Romam pergo.'- Sir John Stoddart, Universal Grammar, p. 106.

Professor Key thinks, that domi is not a genitive, but a dative in 7, with the meaning at;' so also, humi, 'on the ground,' belli, in war,' ruri, “in the country. He considers that this dative, denoting place, [hence termed by some grammarians the locative,'] maintained itself in certain words, in spite of the increasing tendency to express this idea by the preposition in and an ablative. See Latin Grammar, 114, and compare $ 952 of the same Grammar.

411. We seem to have genitive cases in the words eftsoons (“soon after'), outwards, unawares, and needs, in the phrase "he needs must go.' Sometimes may be a genitive singular, or plural objective.


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

The following are possibly genitives :

else, old English el-es, ell-es, el-s


henn-es thence

thenn-es since

sithen-s. The terminations wise and ways are liable to be confounded. The Anglo-Saxon wise is a noun signifying 'manner;' hence otherwise means “in another manner.'

We find always, noways, and nowise. Dr. Adams, Elements of the English Language, 396, says, that the form ways is not connected with the word way,

a road.'

compare the German alle-wege, 'all-ways, with the French
toujours, 'all-days,' and tous les jours, all the days.'
412. Whilom. A.-S. hwilum, hwylum, hwilon. This is con-

sidered to be a dative plural from the nouns hwil,
Chwile, 'a while, time,' from which our adverb a-while,
for a time,' is probably derived. According to this

view, whilom signifies at whiles,' at times.'
seldom. A.-S. seld, seldan, seldon. Whether the termination

-om in this instance marks a dative, may be doubted.
Seld is used in composition by Shakespeare:

Seld-shown flamens
Do press among the popular throngs, and puff
To win a vulgar station.

Coriolanus, ii. 1.
413. Beside, between, and because are respectively ‘by side,'
by twain,' (i.e. near two '), and · by cause,' also used in the
sense of' by reason.'

The s in besides is not easy to explain. Dr. Adams considers it as the mark of an old genitive besid-es. But this is



[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

very doubtful.

3. Adverbs having the prefix a. 414. The prefix a is of different origin in different adverbs, and demands very close examination.

1. Sometimes it represents the A.-S. preposition an, in, on, sin,' 'on;' not only with substantives, as a-bed, a-board, a-shore; but also with adjectives, as a-broad, a-loud.

2. Sometimes it represents the preposition of, as a-new,' of new,' de novo : compare 'of late.'

[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


« PrécédentContinuer »