« PreviousContinue »
IRENE M. MEAD
STATE NORMAL SCHOOL, WINONA, MINN.
SILVER, BURDETT AND COMPANY
TYPOGRAPHY BY C. J. PETERS & Sox, Boston.
PRESS WORK BY BERWICK & SMITH.
GRAMMAR is the explanation and justification of the use of words by a race, as its language has been developed in the process of change and expansion. The.. science of grammar is an analysis of the origin and results of this process. It gives authority to rules of expression, and tends to render permanent the underlying principles of the language.
The aim of this book is to supply a want which teachers of advanced study of the English tongue have long felt, and which has not been met by any school textbook yet produced. There are many good grammars which provide for an earlier stage of instruction, and which give minute, formal, and mechanical definitions and rules. Few school books in this department attempt the broader and more logical development of the language.
Teachers of higher classes, therefore, especially if their students are to become teachers themselves, demand a text-book on a scientific basis, with emphasis on the inseparable connection between grammar and psychology. They ask for a logical treatise of language, which, together with its definitions and rules, shall stimulate the reflective powers, and give a knowledge of English which shall produce masters in the art of composition. The well-furnished writer, speaker, or teacher of English style must be able to trust his own trained judgment in the use of words and the formation of sentences. In
other words, independent thought and original expression go hand in hand. This is the key-note of this work.
In view of such a necessity in high and normal schools, the author combines in this book the history and derivation of English forms of speech with an analysis of the language and its functions. If the technical terms (which are employed because only by them can the science of language be presented) are mastered in the beginning, the student will find no difficulty in following the author's method to the end. It will be easy to trace the logical consistency of the language with itself, and the harmony of its development, which together give our glorious English tongue its expansive and expressive power. It will also be apparent how this language has been able to subordinate all the accidents of an increasing vocabulary to the normal functions of a generous and flexible continuity of life..
While this book is especially designed for normal and training schools and teacher-training classes in high schools, it is hoped that it will be found valuable as a means of self-help to large numbers of teachers who are striving to secure a better preparation for their work.
It is thought that it is also well adapted for use in the summer schools which are now so prominent a feature of the educational work of the country.
Throughout the work, the author has adhered closely to the terminology of Professor W. D. Whitney, and is especially indebted to him and to Professor T. R. Lounsbury for assistance upon historical phases of the subject.