« PrécédentContinuer »
Soyons vrais; de nos maux n'accusons que nous-mêmes.
When méme answers to same, it is an adjective, and, of course, is liable to all the accidents of that part of speech.-EXAMPLES : Le méme homme; la même femme. The same man; the same woman. Les mêmes sentiinens; les mêmes The same sentiments; the same
Même, answering to even, is an adverb, and, therefore, does not vary.- EXAMPLES:
L'estime et le respect sont les justes tributs
Observe, that même, same, in a comparative sense, requires que ; therefore, St. Evremond, in speaking of the Romans, instead of saying, Les esclaves s'animaient du même · The slaves were animated with the esprit de leur maitre,
same spirit as their master, He should have said, Les esclaves s'animaient du méme esprit que leur maitre.
SIXTH DIFFICULTY. L'un l'autre, l'une l'autre; les uns les autres, &c. answering to one another, in English, are used whenever the reflective verb becomes reciprocal.—EXAMPLES: Ils s'aiment l'un l'autre depuis | They have loved one another from leur enfance.
their youth. Nous devons nous aider les uns We ought to help one another. les autres.
En ce monde, il se faut l'un l'autre secourir. When a preposition affects one another, l'un l'autre, it is, in English, placed before it; but, in French, it is placed between l'un and l'autre.--EXAMPLES: Ils se sont donné le mot les uns | They gave the word to one anoaux autres.
ther. Ils travaillèrent comme à l'envi They worked as if it were through l'un de l'autre.
emulation of one another. Ils brûlèrent les vaisseaux les uns They burnt each other's vessels. des autres.
SEVENTH DIFFICULTY. L'un et l'autre, both, requires the verb, which relates to it, to be always in the plural, notwithstanding the authority of some grammarians, who, countenanced by certain writers, and even by the French Academy, pretend that the verb may be either singular or plural ; but reason, stronger than all grammatical authorities, in unison with polite practice, reproves the latter construction, and only admits the former.- EXAMPLES: L'un et l'autre vous ont obligé. Both have obliged you. L'un et l'autre sont mauvais. Each of them is bad. L'un et l'autre ont été payés. They were both paid.
Ni l'un ni l'autre, neither, follows the same syntax with l'un et l'autre.-EXAMPLES: Ni l'un ni l'autre ne viendront. Neither of thom will come. Ni l'un ni l'autre ne vous ont Neither of them has deceived you,
Observe, that l'un ou l'autre, eithur, requires the verb to be in the singular; and the same preposition should be used before both l'un and Pautre,
S. To say, that a woman appears to be good, which of the two following modes of expression must be used in French? Cette femme a l'air bon, ou This woman has a good-natured Cette femme a l'air bonne.
M. As the verb a and l'air, though constituting a compound expression, express but the single idea which may be represented by the verbs semble, paraít ; and as the adjective bon is not used to qualify merely the air, but the woman berself, whose air announces the moral quality which is affirmed of her, I think that a preference wust be given to “ cette femme a l'air bonne,” though almost every grammarian is in favour of the other mode of expression.
If, instead of saying, “cette fenıme a l'air,” you had said, “cette femme a un air,” &c. bon instead of bonne must necessarily be used, because the quality is no longer affirmed of the woman, but of the air itself.
Observe, we are not to confound “avoir l'air mauvais," to look ill-natured, with "avoir mauvais air," to have a mean appearance ; as the former relates to the moral character of a person, and the latter to the exterior. Also, that the former mode of expression requires, before air, the article, which the latter does not admit.EXAMPLES:
Cléon, lorsque vous nous bravez,
En démontant votre figure,
Vous n'avez pas l'air maurais; je vous jure,
SYNTAX OF THE VERB.
LESSON THE FOURTEENTH.
ON THE USE OF THE TENSES AND THEIR CORRESPONDENCE
WITH EACH OTHER.
This tense is used, 1st, to denote an actual state, as, Je suis fâché de tout ce qui vous I am sorry for all that has hap. est arrivé.
pened to you. 2d. It is used in propositions of eternal truth, as, Dieu seul est tout-puissant. God alone is almighty. Les trois angles d'un triangle va- The three angles of a triangle are lent deux angles droits.
equal to two right angles. 3d. It is used, in lieu of the future, in the following phrase, and the like: Je pars demain pour les Pays-bas. | I set out to-morrow for the Ne
therlands. It is here proper to mention, that Je pars demain, and Je partirai demain, do not convey exactly the same idea; the latter meaning, that I intend or am disposed to set off, while the former expresses, along with it, a degree of inpatience that the circumstance should take place.
The same difference also exists, but rather in a more pointed manner, between the two modes of expressionFinissez-vous bientôt ? and Shall you finish soon? Finirez-vous bientôt ?
Shall you soon have finished? The first question expresses a fit of impatience, while the second may be dictated by mere curiosity.
4th. It is often used in the recital of an event instead of the past tense. The present, by rendering the event in some degree visible, highly enhances the interest it may inspire, and makes the hearer
feel, at least, a part of the sensations he would have experienced, bad he been a spectator.
We may see an instance of the present, used for the past, in Telo. machus. - Adoam, after having related various circumstances attend ing the death of Pygmalion, goes on in the following manner: Cependant tout le palais est plein In the mean time, the whole palace
d'un tumulte affreux; on entend is in tumult, and on all sides partout les cris de ceux qui are heard the cries of those who disent : le roi est mort. Les uns say, the king is dead. Some are sont effrayés, les autres courent terrified; others run to arms; aux armes : tous paraissent en and all seem fearful of the conpeine des suites, mais ravis de sequences, and yet overjoyed cette nouvelle. La renommée
at the news. Rumour carries la fait voler, de bouche en it from mouth to mouth, and bouche, dans toute la grande throughout the great city of ville de Tyr, et il ne se trouve Tyre, and there is not a single pas un seul homme qui regrette person who laments the king; le roi: sa mort est la délivrance his death is the deliverance and et la consolation de tout le peu- consolation of all. ple.
But it is in poetry that the present animates with a peculiar degree of energy, and graces the recital of a transaction: witness the following magic lines of the immortal Racine, wherein Théramène relates to Thésée the death of his son Hippolyte:
Un effroyable cri, sorti du fond des flots,
La frayeur les emporte; et, sourds à cette fois,
PHEDRE, ACTE V. Sc. VJ.
The following cases correspond with the present of the indicative:
Vous partez aujourd'hui, pour Rome.
On dit que
OBSERVATION.-The same correspondence takes place when the sentence is negative, except in the present of the indicative, which is supplied by the present of the subjunctive. Example: On ne dit pas que vous partez aujourd'hui, would be a discordance in grammar; and the genius of the French language requires that we should say, On ne dit
pas que vous partiez aujourd'hui. We shall soon treat more at length on this subject.
PRESENT ANTERIOR, OR IMPERFECT. As it is natural for Englishmen to confound this tense with the present-anterior-periodical or preterite, and the past or compound of