Billeder på siden

an adverb in both languages. In the same manner mañana, to-morrow, which, in Vendré mañana, I shall come to-morrow, is an adverb; in Mañana es dia de ayuno, To-morrow is a fast day, is used as a substantive. Many more instances might be adduced of the variation in class which some of the parts of speech are capable of undergoing; but the foregoing examples are sufficient to convince learners that, without a strict attention to the import of the word in the sentence, the class to which it belongs can seldom be accurately ascertained.



SYNTAX treats of sentences, fixes the proper arrangement of their component parts, and shows how the various modifications of words are to be correctly employed.

A sentence has been defined to be an assemblage of words forming a complete sense.

Syntax is divided into two parts, Concord and Government.

Concord is the agreement of one word with another, in number, gender, case, or person; as, Yo escribo, I write. Here yo is the first person of the singular number, and escribo is also the first person of the same number: these two words, therefore, are said to agree in number and person.

Government or Regimen is the power of one word over another when it determines its case, tense, or mood; as, La matará, He will kill her. Here matará is an active transitive verb, governing the pronoun in the objective case.

There are four species of concords.

1st. Between the article and noun. These agree in number, gender, and case; as, El valor de las tropas, The valour of the troops. N. B. This is likewise the agreement of two nouns used in apposition.

2d. Between the noun and the adjective. These also agree in gender, number, and case; as, La victoria gloriosa de los valerosos patriotas, The

glorious victory of the valiant patriots. N.B. Participles adjectively used have also this species of concord.

3d. Between the antecedent and the relative. These always agree in gender and number, and sometimes also in case; as, Entregué las cartas a las señoras para las quales se escribiéron, I delivered the letters to the ladies for whom they were written; Estas son las señoras para las quales se escribieron las cartas, These are the ladies for whom the letters were written. The second example exhibits the relative as agreeing in gender and number only with its antecedent, the relative being in the objective case, whilst the antecedent is in the nominative.

4th. Between the subject and the verb. These agree in number and person; as, Yo soy, I am; nosotros somos, we are; éllos vienen, they come.


[Having enumerated and defined the different species of words of which the Spanish language is composed, I shall in this Part lay down the necessary rules to learn how to produce the correct agreement and right arrangement of words in a sentence.]





RULE 1. The article agrees in gender, number, and case, with the noun to which it is prefixed; as

El libro contenia los co

mentarios de los doctores de la universidad sobre las profecias de los profetas.

The book contained the

commentaries of the doctors of the university on the prophecies of the prophets.

Note a. Feminine nouns, beginning with a or ha, and having the accent on the first syllable, take in the singular the masculine article; as, Mas el arca andaba sobre las aguas, But the ark moved upon the


Note b.-The article el loses the e after the prepositions de or á, to which prepositions the consonant of the article is then joined ; as, del autor, of the author; al libro, to the book; instead of de el autor, á el libro. N. B. El preceding an epithet does not lose the e as, logró el dictado de el Batallador, he obtained the surname of the Battler; dieron á su rey el dictado de el Deseado, they gave their king the surname of the Desired.

Plural Number.

RULE 2. Nouns ending in a vowel which is not marked with the accent, take an s in the plural; as

[blocks in formation]

Kingdom, kingdoms.
Crown, crowns.

« ForrigeFortsæt »