1. ELEMENTS are of two ranks, viz., principal and subordinate. These terms, as used in analysis, are readily understood. Principal elements are those on which others depend; subordinate elements are those which depend on others. The first make sense by themselves; the second cannot be used alone, for they depend on some other part of the sentence for their meaning. These might be named independent and dependent.

2. The principal element of a sentence is the proposition, as has been already seen. All the other parts of

sentence are added to the proposition as a whole, or to some one of its component parts. The meaning of the proposition or of its parts is extended or restricted or in various ways modified by the words, phrases and clauses added to it. These various additions, which are now to be taken up one after another, are all complementary to the proposition that is, all used to fill out its meaning—and they are all subordinate in rank. The proposition, then, is principal in rank, and is independent; all other elements are subordinate in rank, and dependent.

3. The basis of an added element is principal as to the other parts of the element, inasmuch as these depend upon it, while the entire element, including the basis, is subordinate in rank.

4. An element depending upon one which is itself subordinate may be considered as subordinate in the second degree;

and one subordinate to this again, as being so in the third degree.

5. The proposition as a whole is independent; its parts are not. A subject is nothing without a predicate, nor a predicate without a subject. If they do not depend on each other exactly as an adjective upon a noun, they are so mutually related that one always implies the other.

NOTE.—No especial practice on the rank of elements is needed here. It will be useful when complex sentences and subordinate clauses are considered.

STRUCTURE OF ELEMENTS. 1. Elements, whether principal or subordinate, consist of a basis, with or without added words. All words in an element beside the basis are joined directly or indirectly to it. If there be no added words, that is, if a single word, phrase, or clause makes an element, it is simple in its structure. A simple element, then, is one without added words.

This applies to the subject or predicate, or any other element. An unmodified word, phrase, or clause, whether it forms an entire element, or a separate part of another element, is simple.

NOTE.—Of course, an element without modifiers cannot properly be said to have a basis.

2. If there are additions to the essential part of an element—that is, if a word, phrase, or clause is modified—the element is complex in structure.

A complex element is one whose basis is modified by added words. This also applies to the subject or predicate, or any other element. A modified word, phrase, or clause, whether it forms an entire element, or a separate part of another element, is complex.

3. Elements are made complex by joining dissimilar parts,

They may be (a) unlike parts of speech ; as, by joining an adjective to a noun the complex element good books is formed. So by joining an adjective to an adverb; as, very good, etc.

(6.) Like parts of speech doing different offices; as, two nouns in apposition; e.g., Charles the king; or two adjectives, one of which is used as modifier of the other; as, deep blue.

(c.) A phrase or a clause joined to a word; as, the mill on the floss; do as you please.

4. By these combinations a very great number and variety of complex elements are formed. They represent complex ideas. Scarcely any sentence is found without these complex ideas.

5. Two or more similar elements of any kind-subjects, predicates, adjectives, etc.—may be joined by a conjunction and form a compound element. These also may be made complex by added words, so that an element may be both compound and complex.

NOTE.—Compound elements cannot be fully treated till conjunctions have been considered. Complex and compound sentences, also, are deferred, for the same reason.

NOTE.—It is not thought necessary to add specíal practice on structure of elements, as all subsequent lessons will require such practice. These definitions should be learned, as they will be needed for constant application to all the analyses which follow. Synopsis of elements as to rank and structure :

principal and independent { the proposition. Elements are, in rank,

subordinate and dependent {all others. simple, an unmodified proposition, word, phrase, or

clause. Elements are,

complex, a proposition, word, phrase, or clause, modiin structure, fied by added words dissimiliar in name,


simple, elements joined by compound, two or more

complex, a conjunction.


1. What ranks have elements ? Define each. What other names ? 2. What element is principal? What is the relation of all other parts of a sentence to this? 3. What part of a subordinate element is the basis? 4. When is an element subordinate in the second degree ? 5. What about the proposition in this connection ?

1. To what are all added parts of an element joined? When is an element simple? Define a simple element. To what does the term apply? 2. When is an element complex ? Define a complex element. To what does the term apply? 3. How are elements made complex? 4. What do complex elements represent? Are there many such in sentences ? 5. What is a compound element? How can these also be made complex? 6. Write a synopsis of rank and structure of elements.



1. Any word or group of words joined to a noun, or to what is used as a noun, is an adjective element. The noun so modified may be in any relation to the rest of the sentence, i.e., subject, object, part of adverbial element, etc.

2. The adjective element need not, of necessity, contain the part of speech called adjective ; whatever is added to” a noun takes this name.

3. The basis of an adjective element may be an adjective, a participle, a noun, a phrase, or a clause.

4. The test is whether a given word or group of words modifies a noun; if so, it is an adjective modifier ; all that modifies one noun makes one element. 5. The adjective element may denote various modifications


of the noun; as, number, quality, or whatever else adjectives may denote; assumed action, state, or whatever else the participle may denote; identity, occupation, or whatever else the noun in apposition or in the possessive case may denote; and various circumstances of time, place, etc., or whatever else the phrase or the clause as a whole, may denote. .

6. The same noun may be modified by several distinct adjective elements.

7. The simple subject, with its adjective modifiers, makes the complex subject.

8. The adjective element is always subordinate, and may be simple or complex in structure.

9. Adjective elements, simple or complex, may be found in all parts of sentences; they are named from their office, not from their component parts. 10. Synopis of adjective elements :

apposition, noun,

quality, An adjective ) adjective, joined to a noun in

specification, element is a phrase,

any relation,

circumstance, clause,

etc., etc. with or without added words.

to denote

QUESTIONS. 1. What is an adjective element? To what noun is it joined ? 2. Must it contain an adjective ? 3. What may be its basis? 4. What is the test ? 5. What may it denote? 6. How many such elements may be joined to a noun ? 7. What makes the complex subject ? 8. What is the rank of an adjective element? What may be the structure? 9. Where may they be found? 10. Write a synopsis of adjective elements ?

PRACTICE. Analyze the following sentences, so far as they are composed of propositions and adjective elements, according to the model given.

« ElőzőTovább »