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han sido nombrados, their lordships have been appointed; ¿ está vm. bueno, señor? are you well, sir?
Note c.-The adjective which follows the reflective pronoun agrees with the noun which the pronoun represents; as, el se vió engañado, he saw himself deceived; las mugeres se engañan á sí mismas, women deceive themselves.
When two or more adjectives serve to qualify a noun substantive which is in the plural, they do not agree with it in number, provided the plural of the substantive be composed of nouns of different species, and yet including but one of each species; as, diccionario de las lenguas Española, Inglesa, y Latina, a dictionary of the Spanish, English, and Latin languages; here lenguas is in the plural, and yet the three adjectives by which it is qualified remain in the singular, and cannot be changed without destroying the sense. Fearful that this distinction will not be readily understood, because English adjectives are always indeclinable, I shall endeavour to illustrate the remark by stating a case. Suppose I want to describe three dresses, a black, a blue, and a white, I should say, descripcion de los vestidos, negro, azul, y blanco: change the number of the adjectives, and say, descripcion de los vestidos, negros, azules, y blancos; it then implies that there are more than one dress of each colour: alter the number of the substantive, and express it, descripcion del vestido negro, azul, y blanco; the meaning then is, that there is only one dress, in which the three colours, black, blue, and white, are blended together.
Adjectives which become defective when placed before their Nouns.
RULE 24. Primero, tercero, postrero, uno,* alguno, ninguno, bueno, and malo, prefixed, lose the o in the singular; as, el primer hombre, the first man; el postrer dia, the last day; ningun juez, no judge; un buen poeta, a good poet; un mal lector, a bad reader.
*Un is also placed before all those feminine nouns, which require the masculine article, as, un arca, un hambre. See Note a to Rule 1st.
Note a.-With tercero the rule is immaterial; as, el tercer siglo, or el tercero siglo, the third century.
Note b.-Ciento immediately preceding a noun loses the to; as, cien hombres, a hundred men ; ciento y veinte, a hundred and twenty. Note c.-Santo loses the to before the proper names of men; as, San Juan, St. John; San Francisco, St. Francis: except before the names of Domingo, Tomas, Tomé, and Toribio; as, Santo Domingo, St. Dominick, Santo Tomas, St. Thomas, &c.
Note d-Grande frequently loses the de; but more especially when preceding a consonant, and when not conveying an idea of size; as, un gran matemático, a great mathematician; un grande odio, a great hatred; un grande caballo, a large horse; un gran caballo, a famous horse.
Note e.-The adjective uno, una, is used for the indefinite article, a or un; as, un autor escribió en un dia una obra, an author wrote in one day a work.
Note f―The adjectives alguno and ninguno must always precede the noun, when the verb is not accompanied by the negative no: as, he escrito algunas cartas, I have written some letters; ningun amigo tiene, no friend has he; but when no accompanies the verb we use generally ninguno, which must then be placed after the verb ; as, no he escrito ningunas cartas, I have written no letters; no tiene ningun amigo, he has no friend.-N. B. Alguno in the singular, and placed after the noun, is often used instead of ninguno; as, no tiene amigo alguno.
RULE 25. Adjectives, or Participles employed as substantives, require the neuter article, if such words as how, how much, what, or that which, can be prefixed to the English adjective, and, in other instances, take the masculine or feminine article agreeing with the noun understood; as, Los jóvenes no conocen bien lo ventajoso que les será prepararse para lo futuro, The young do not well know how advantageous it will be to them to prepare themselves for the future; Muchas son las penas verdaderas, pero las imaginarias son mas, Many are the real troubles, but the imaginary ones are more.
On the use of the numeral adjective uno as a substitute for the English indefinite article a or an.
The English indefinite is sometimes expressed by the
same article in Spanish; at others it is translated by the definite article, and in many instances entirely suppressed.
1. The indefinite is used in both languages, when a or an denotes the idea of unity in a very vague and indeterminate manner; as, a friend told me that, un amigo me dixo eso; he wrote an excellent work, escribió una obra excelente.
. 2. It may be used in both languages, when the noun is taken in a general sense; that is to say, when the English noun can be put in the plural, without an article, or the Spanish noun in either number with the definite article; as, a man without honour is contemptible; or, men without honour are contemptible; un hombre sin honra es despreciable; or, el hombre sin honra es despreciable ; or, los hombres sin honra son despreciables. See Rule 8.
3. The indefinite article, used before nouns of measure, weight, number, bulk, &c. is translated by the definite. See Rule 10.
4. When a verb connects two nouns, one of which denotes the country, dignity, profession, employment, &c. of the other, the indefinite is generally suppressed in Spanish; as, the governor was an Englishman, el gobernador era Ingles; the duke is also a bishop, el duque es tambien obispo; the son is a better physician than the father, el hijo es mejor médico que el padre.
5. When two nouns come together, used in apposition, the indefinite is not expressed in Spanish; as, Lord Wellington, a commander in Spain, Lor Wellington, comandante en España.-N. B. Nouns which are used in apposition may be readily discovered, because they will generally admit a relative and the verb to be between them; as, my brother a banker at, &c. that is, my brother who is a banker at: the Thames a river of England, that is, the Thames which is a river of England, &c.
6. When the indefinite precedes a noun seemingly taken in part only, it is also suppressed; as, I have an inclination, tengo inclinacion; he had a mind to go, tenia gana de ir; have you an objection? & tiene vm. reparo? she has a memory, ella tiene memoria.
7. It is also omitted in Spanish in the tittle-page of a book; as, A New Dictionary, Diccionario Nuevo;
8. Likewise before the numbers one hundred, one thousand; but it is not omitted before one million alone; as, a hundred men, cien hombres; a thousand pounds, mil libras; he owes a million, debe un millon.
9. It is also suppressed before the word half; as, three yards and a half, tres varas y media : it is likewise omitted before the integer which precedes the half, if it contains but one unit; as, a yard and a half, vara y media; a million and a half, millon y medio.
10. The indefinite is not translated in ejaculations, nor when placed between the substantive and adjective; as, what a pity! ¡ que lastima! so famous a victory, tan famosa victoria; such a man, tal hombre.
11. It is omitted after the adverb like; as, he acted like a man, obró como hombre; like a hero, como héroe. But if the word following the adverb be connected with the following part of the sentence, the indefinite may be used; as, like a man who valued virtue, como hombre, or como un hombre, que apreciaba la virtud.
RULE 26. Adjectives are compared with the adverbs mas, more; ménos, less; and tan, so or as; example,
So or as wise.
Note a.-If the English adjective much be preceded by sʊ or as, the Spanish adjective tanto is employed; as, tanto dinero, as much money; tantas penas, so many troubles.
RULE 27. Than after comparatives in English is que in Spanish, unless it precedes the pronoun what, expressed or understood, and then it is de; as Richer than I, Less vain than thou, More than they, or than what they, thought,
Mas rico que yo.
Note a.-Than before what is sometimes translated que, when the verb in the sentence is negative; as, no tiene el libro mas que lo que hemos extractado, the book contains no more than what we have extracted.
Note b.-Than after comparatives, and preceding a noun of number or quantity, is que or de; the latter seems preferable when the verb is not accompanied by a negative; as, tenemos mas de dos libras, we have more than two pounds; no tenia mas que dos hijas, he had no more than two daughters; mas de un tercio, more than one third no mas que un tercio, not more than one third.
RULE 28. As after comparatives is como: example, As beautiful as vain, Tan hermosa como vana. As much money as power, Tanto dinero como poder. I read as much as I write, Tunto leo como escribo.
Note a.-Instead of como we may use quan after tan before adjectives, and quanto after tanto before verbs; as, tan hermosa quan vana ; tanto leo quanto escribo.
Note b.-The English definite article before comparatives is not translated into Spanish, and the expression frequently receives a different turn; as, the better day the better deed, mejor dia mejor obra; the more money the less wit, mas dinero menos ingenio; the more we play the less we learn, mas jugamos menos aprendemos, or mientras mas jugamos menos aprendemos, or quanto mas jugamos tanto menos aprendemos, &c.
Note c.-As after so, and followed by a verb in the infinitive, is rendered que, and the second verb is put in the same tense as the first: Example, he was so impious as not to believe in God, era tan impio que no creia en Dios.
Note d-If there be two comparatives, differently formed, the conjunction should correspond with the last; as, sus calles estan tan bien ó mejor empedradas que las nuestras, their streets are as well paved as, or better paved than, ours; sus navios son mas fuertes ó á lo menos tan fuertes como los nuestros, their ships are stronger than, or at least as strong as, ours.
RULE 29. English superlatives ending in est or formed by most are rendered by prefixing the definite article to the Spanish comparative; as
The most ungrateful,
El mas sabio.
Note a.-The definite article is omitted before the comparative, if it is already expressed before the substantive; as, la muger mas ingrata, the most ungrateful woman: unless a verb intervene ; as, el leon es el mas noble de todos los animales, the lion is the noblest of all animals.