(6) Every clause introduced by a relative pronoun is an adjective clause modifying the noun or pronoun used as antecedent. When, where, and while, if preceded by nouns, also introduce adjective clauses:

1. Thomas Jefferson was in Europe at the time when the Federal Convention of 1787 was called.

2. This is the place where we boys used to go in swimming.

3. All the time while the recitation was going on, a noise was kept up outside.

The Two Articles.

The definite article the and the indefinite article a or an are really demonstrative adjectives. They do not qualify or describe; they merely point out. The difference between the two articles may be seen in such sentences as

I saw a blind man yesterday” and “I saw the blind man yesterday,'

Mr. A is a leader in every good movement” and “Mr. A is the leader in every good movement.”


Repetition of the Articles.

The article should be repeated before each word in a series, if each word means a different object. Thus “I saw a black

I and a white horse" means that I saw two horses; but “I

Ι saw a black and white horse means that I saw one piebald horse. What is the difference, therefore, in meaning between “ the secretary and treasurer” and “the secretary and the treasurer"? Which would require “ has been elected," and which “ have been elected”?

When two or more well-known objects. are spoken of, the definite article is repeated only when the two objects are considered separately in the singular. We say, therefore, "The Old and the New Testament,” or “ The Old and New Testaments”;

“ the definite and the indefinite article," or the definite and indefinite articles "; "the singular and

“ the plural number,” or “the singular and plural numbers.”

Comparison of Adjectives. With the exception of this and that, plural these and those, adjectives have no inflections to express differences of grammatical number; but most adjectives expressing quality are inflected to denote degrees of quality: rich old

many glad happy richer older

gladder happier richest oldest most

gladdest happiest


It is of course impossible to compare such adjectives as all, square, this, each, every, three-sided, twenty, etc.

The positive degree denotes the simple quality possessed.

The comparative degree denotes a higher degree of the quality.

The superlative degree denotes the highest degree of the quality.

Methods of Comparison. All adjectives of one syllable and many of two syllables, if they admit of comparison at al), are compared by adding er for the comparative and est for the superlative:

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Most adjectives of two syllables and all adjectives of more than two syllables, if they admit of comparison, are compared by the use of more for the comparative and most for the superlative:

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The Descending Scale. — The two methods of comparison – byer, est, and more, most -- constitute the ascending scale. The descending scale employs less and least:

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Irregular Comparison. — The following adjectives are irregularly compared ;

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The Comparative Degree.

The comparative degree is used when two persons or things are compared :

1. This girl is taller than her sister. 2. This pupil is the more intelligent of the two. 3. Which is the better dictionary, Webster's or Worcester's? 4. Of London and New York, the former is the wealthier. 5. Which is the better road to take here? 6. St. Peter's Cathedral is greater than all other cathedrals.

In the last sentence there are still only two things compared, (1) St. Peter's Cathedral and (2) all other cathedrals. Care must be taken not to omit“ other.” To say that St. Peter's Cathedral is "greater than all cathedrals ” would mean that it is greater than itself.

The Superlative Degree. The superlative degree is used when more than two persons or things are compared :

1. Of the three brothers, Henry is the tallest.
2. Janice is the oldest of the five sisters.
3. Which is the most interesting of these four books?

4. Of London, New York, and Paris, the last is the most beautiful.

5. St. Peter's is the greatest of all cathedrals.


any ” with

Care must be taken not to use

other" the superlative. Never say “He is the richest of all other men in town

or He is the richest of any man in town.” The correct forms are:

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6. He is the richest man in town.
7. He is richer than any other man in town.

Cautions. (a) We have learned that the pronoun each is singular: When used as an adjective, its noun must of course be in the singular:

each boy, each leaf, each day, each time.

But even when each is followed by two or more nouns,

the verb must remain in the singular. The same is true of every; which is always an adjective:

1. Each man and boy has contributed what he could.
2. Every man, woman, and child is invited.
3. Every nook and corner was searched.

4. Every chapter, every page, and every paragraph that is in this book has been read with the utmost care.

(6) Do not overwork your favorite adjectives. Such expressions as nice, lovely, awful, horrid, awfully nice, perfectly lovely, perfectly awful, perfectly horrid lose force with every


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