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turned my view, there was perplexity to be dis-, anomalous formations, which, being once incorentangled and confusion to be regulated; choice porated, can never be afterwards dismissed or was to be made out of boundless variety, with reformed. out any established principle of selection; adul- Of this kind are the derivatives length from terations were to be detected, without a settled long, strength, from strong, darling from dear, test of purity; and modes of expression to be breadth from broad, from dry, drought, and from rejected or received, without the suffrages of high, height, which Milton, in zeal for analogy, any writers of classical reputation or acknow. writes highth : Quid te erempta juvat spinis de ledged authority.
pluribus una ? to change all would be too much, Having therefore no assistance but from ge- and to change one is nothing. deral grammar, I applied myself to the perusal This uncertainty is most frequent in the of our writers; and noting whatever might be vowels, which are so capriciously pronounced, of use to ascertain or illustrate any word or and so differently modified, by accident or affecphrase, accumulated in time the materials of a tation, not only in every province, but in every dictionary, which, by degrees, I reduced to mouth, that to them, as is well known to etymethod, establishing to myself, in the progress mologists, little regard is to be shown in the deof the work, such rules as experience and ana-duction of one language from another. logy suggested to me; experience, which prac- Such defects are not errors in orthography, tice and observation were continually increas- but spots of barbarity impressed so deep in the ing; and analogy, which, though in some words English language, that criticism can never wash obscure, was evident in others.
them away; these, therefore, must be permitted In adjusting the Orthography, which has been to remain untouched ; but many words have to this tiine unsettled and fortuitous, I found it likewise been altered by accident, or depraved necessary to distinguish those irregularities that by ignorance, as the pronunciation of the vulgar are inherent in our tongue, and perhaps coeval has been weakly followed; and some still conwith it, from others which the ignorance or tinue to be variously written, as authors differ negligence of later writers has produced. Every in their care or skill: of these it was proper to language has its anomalies, which though incon- inquire the true orthography, which I have venient, and in themselves once unnecessary, always considered as depending on their derivamust be tolerated among the imperfections of tion, and have therefore referred them to their human things, and which require only to be original languages ; thus I write enchant, enregistered, that they may not be increased, and chantment, enchanter, after the French, and inascertained that they may not be confounded; cantation after the Latin : thus entire is chosen but every language has likewise its improprie- rather than intire, because it passed to us not ties and absurdities, which it is the duty of the from the Latin integer, but from the French lexicographer to correct or proscribe.
entier. As language was at its beginning merely oral, Of many words it is difficult to say whether all words of necessary or common use were they were immediately received from the Latin spoken before they were written; and while or the French, since at the time when we had they were unfixed by any visible signs, must dominions in France, we bad Latin service in have been spoken with great diversity, as we our churches. It is, however, my opinion, that dow observe those who cannot read to catch the French generally supplied us ; for we have sounds imperfectly, and utter them negligently. few Latin words, among the terms of domestic When this wild and barbarous jargon was first use, which are not French; but many French, reduced to an alphabet, every penman endea- which are very remote from Latin. voured to express, as he could, the sounds which Even in words of which the derivation is aphe was accustomed to pronounce or to receive, parent, I have been often obliged to sacrifice and vitiated in writing such words as were al uniformity to custom ; thus I write, in compliready vitiated in speech. The powers of the ance with a numberless majority, convey and letters, when they were applied to a new lan-inveigh, deceit and receipt, fancy and phantom ; guage, must have been vague and unsettled, and sometimes the derivative varies from the primitherefore different bands would exhibit the tive, as explain and explanation, repeat and repetisame sound by different combinations.
From this uncertain pronunciation arise in a Some combinations of letters having the same great part the various dialects of the same coun
power, used indifferently without any distry, which will always be observed to grow coverable reason of choice, as in choak, choke ; fewer, and less different, as books are multi- soap, sope ; fewel, fuel, and many others; which plied; and from this arbitrary representation of I have sometimes inserted twice, that those who sounds by lettere proceeds that diversity of spell- search for them under either form, may not ing, observable in the Saxon remains, and search in vain. suppose in the first books of every nation, which In examining the orthography of any doubt. perplexes or destroys analogy, and produces 'ful word, the mode of spelling by which it is
inserted in the series of the dictionary, is to be that the accent is placed by the author quoted, considered as that to which I give, perhaps not on a different syllable from that marked in the often rashly, the preference. I have left, in the alphabetical series; it is then to be understood, examples, to every author his own practice un- tbat custom has varied, or that the author has, molested, that the reader may balance suffrages, in my opinion, pronounced wrong. Short diand judge between us; but this question is not rections are sometimes given wbere the sound always to be determined by reputed or by real of letters is irregular; and if they are sometimes learning ; some men, intent upon greater things, omitted, defect in such minute observations will have thought little on sounds and derivations; be more easily excused, than superfluity. some, knowing in the ancient tongues, have ne- In the investigation both of the orthography glected those in which our words are commonly and signification of words, their Etymology was to be sought. Thus Hammond writes f.cibleness necessarily to be considered, and they were for feasibleness, because I suppose he imagined therefore to be divided into primitives and deriit derived immediately from the Latin; and vatives. A primitive word, is that which can some words, such as dependant, dependent ; be traced no further to any English root; thus dependance, dependence, vary their final syllable, circumspect, circumvent, circumstance, delude, as one or other language is present to the concave, and complicate, though compounds in writer.
the Latin, are to us primitives. Derivatives, In this part of the work, where caprice has are all those that can be referred to any word long wantoned without control, and vanity in English of greater simplicity. sought praise by petty reformation, I have en- The derivatives I have referred to their prideavoured to proceed with a scholar's rever
mitives, with an accuracy sometimes needless; ence for antiquity, and a grammarian’s regard for who does not see that remoteness comes from to the genius of our tongue. I have attempted remote, lovely from love, concavity from concave, few alterations, and among those few, perhaps and demonstrative from demonstrate? But this the greater part is from the modern to the an- grammatical exuberance the scheme of my work: cient practice; and I hope I may be allowed to did not allow me to repress. It is of great imrecommend to those, whose thoughts have been portance, in examining the general fabric of a perhaps employed too anxiously on verbal sin- language, to trace one word from another, by gularities, not to disturb, upon narrow views, noting the usual modes of derivation and inflecor for minute propriety, the orthography of their tion; and uniformity must be preserved in sysfathers. It has been asserted, that for the law tematical works; though sometimes at the exto be known, is of more importance than to be pense of particular propriety. right. “ Change,” says Hooker, “is not made Among other derivatives I have been careful without inconvenience, even from worse to
to insert and elucidate the anomalous plurals of better." There is in constancy and stability a nouns and preterites of verbs, which in the general and lasting advantage, which will al- Teutonic dialects are very frequent, and, ways overbalance the slow improvements of though familiar to those who have always used gradual correction. Much less ought our writ-them, interrupt and embarrass the learners of ten language to comply with the corruptions of our language. oral utterance, or copy that which every varia- The two languages from which our primitives tion of time or place makes different from itself, bave been derived are the Roman and Teutonic: and imitate those changes, which will again be under the Roman I comprehend the French and changed, while imitation is employed in observ- provincial tongues; and under the Teutonic ing them.
range the Saxon, German, and all their kindred This recommendation of steadiness and uni- dialects. Most of our polysyllables are Roman, formity does not proceed from an opinion that and our words of one syllable are very often particular combinations of letters have much Teutonic. influence on human happiness; or that truth In assigning the Roman original, it has permay not be successfully taught by modes of haps sometimes happened that I have mentioned spelling fanciful and erroneous; I am not yet so only the Latin, when the word was borrowed lost in lexicography as to forget that words are from the I'rench ; and considering myself as the daughters of earth, and that things are the sons employed only in the illustration of my own of heaven. Language is only the instrument of language, I have not been very careful to observe science, and words are but the signs of ideas; I whether the Latin word be pure or barbarous, wish, however, that the instrument might be or the French elegant or obsolete. less apt to decay, and that sigos might be per. For the Teutonic etymologies, I am commanent, like the things which they denote. monly indebted to Junius and Skinner, the only
In settling the orthography, I have not whol- names which I have forborne to quote when I ly neglected the pronunciation, which I have copied their books; not that I might appropriate directed, by printing an accent upon the acute their labours or usurp their honours, but that I or elevated syllable. It will sometimes be found might spare a perpetual repetition by one general acknowledgment. Of these, whom I ought Our knowledge of the northern literature is Tiot to mention but with the reverence due to so scanty, that of words undoubtedly Teutonic, instructors and benefactors, Junius appears to the original is not always to be found in auy have excelled in extent of learning, and Skinner ancient language ; and I have therefore inserted in rectitude of understanding. Junius was ac- Dutch or German substitutes, which I consider curately skilled in all the northern languages, not as radical, but parallel, not as the parents, Skinner probably examined the ancient and re- but sisters of the English. moter dialects only by occasional inspection into 1. The words which are represented as thus redictionaries; but the learning of Junius is often lated by descent or cognation, do not always of no other use than to show him a track by agree in sense; for it is incident to words, as to which he may deviate from his purpose, to their authors, to degenerate from their ancestors, which Skinner always presses forward by the and to change their manners when they change shortest way. Skinner is often ignorant, but their country. It is sufficient, in etymological never ridiculous : Junius is always full of inquiries, if the senses of kindred words be knowledge ; but his variety distracts his judg- found such as may easily pass into each other, ment, and his learning is very frequently dis- I or such as may both be referred to one genera. graced by his absurdities.
idea. The votaries of the northern muses will not The etymology, so far as it is yet known, was perhaps easily restrain their indignation, when easily found in the volumes, where it is particuthey find the name of Junius thus degraded by larly and professedly delivered ; and, by proper a disadvantageous comparison ; but whatever attention to the rules of derivation, the orthoreverence is due to his diligence, or his attain-graphy was soon adjusted. But to collect the ments, it can be no criininal degrea of censori- Words of our language, was a task of greater ousness to charge that etymologist with want of difficulty: the deficiency of dictionaries, was judgment, who can seriously derive dream from immediately apparent; and when they were exdrama, because life is a drama, and a drama is a hausted, what was yet wanting must be sought dream ; and who declares with a tone of defi- by fortuitous and unguided excursions into ance, that no man can fail to derive moan from books, and gleaned as industry should find, or ucros, monos, single or solitary, who considers, chance should offer it, in the boundless chaos of that grief naturally loves to be alone.
a living speech. My search, however, has been either skilful or lucky; for I have much aug
mented the vocabulary. • That I may not appear to have spoken too irrev. As my design was a dictionary, common or erently of Junius, I have here subjoined a few speci appellative, I have omitted all words which mens of his etymological extravagance.
have relation to proper names; such as Arian, Banish, religare, ex banno vel territorio exigere, Socinian, Calvinist, Benedictine, Mahometan ; but in exilium agere. G. bannir. It. bandire, bandeg. have retained those of a more general nature, as giare. H. bandir. B. bannen. Ævi medii scriptores Heathen, Pagan. bapnire dicebant. V. Spelm. in Bannum et in Ban. leuga. Quoniam verd regionem urbiumq; limites
Of the terms of art I have received such as arduis plerumq; montibus, altis fluminibus, longis could be found either in books of science or deniq; fexunsisq; angustissimarum viarum amfrac technical dictionaries; and have often inserted, tibus includebantur, fieri potest id genus limites ban from philosophical writers, words which are dici ab eo quod Barváros et Bárveigos Tarentivis olim, supported perhaps only by a single authority, sicuti tradit Kesychius, vocabantur ai dogoà xei pe ins and which being not admitted into general use, ibutoüs idoi, “obliquae ac minimè in rectum tendentes viæ." Ac fortasse quoque huc facit quod Bevejs, stand yet as candidates or probationers, and eodem Hesychio teste, dicebant ögn orqayrúnn, montes must depend for their adoption on the suffrage arduos,
of futurity. Empty, emtie, vacuus, inanis. A. S. Æmtig. The words wbich our authors have introduced Nescio an sint ab éuiw vel ipitacio. Vomo, evomo, by their knowledge of foreign languages, or igvomitu evacuo. Videtur interim etymologiam hanc
norance of their own, by vanity or wantonness, non obscurè firmare codex Rush. Mat. xii. 44, ubi by compliance with fashion or lust of innovaantiquè scriptum invenimus, A. S. gemoeted hit
tion, I have registered as they occurred, though emetig. “ Invenit eam vacantem.”
Hill, mons, collis. A. S. hyll. Quod videri pot commonly only to censure them, and warn est abscissum ex zohbvm vel zchwrós. Collis, tumulus, others against the folly of naturalizing useless locus in plano editinr. Hom. Il. B. v. 811. iori di Tu foreigners to the injury of the natives. τροπάροιθε πόλεως αιτια κολώνη. Ubi authori brevium scholiorum κολώνη exp. τόπος εις ύψος ανήκων γιώλοφος ižozy.
STAMMERER, balbus, blæsus. Goth. STAMMS. NAP, to take a nap. Dormire, condormiscere. A. S. stamer stamur. D. stam. B. stameler. Su. Cym, heppian. A. S. hpæppan. Quod postremum stamma. Isl. stamr. Sunt a ctwieraür vel orquías, videri potest desumptum ex eviças, ubscuritas, tene- nimiâ loquacitate alios offendere; quod impedite bræ : nihil enim æque solet conciliare somnum, quàm loquentes libentissime garrire soleant; vel quod aliis caliginosa profundæ noctis obscuritas.
nimii semper videantur, etiam parcissimè loquentes.
I have not rejected any by design, merely be- words as occasion requires, or is imagined to cause they were unnecessary or exuberant ; but require tbem. have received those which by different writers There is another kind of composition more have been differently formed, as viscid, and vis- frequent in our language than perhaps in any cidity, viscous, and viscosity.
other, from which arises to foreigners the greatCompounded or double words I have seldom est difficulty. We modify the signification of noted, except when they obtain a signitication many verbs by a particle subjoined; as to come different from that which the components have off, to escape by a fetch; to fall on, to attack ; to in their simple state. Thus highwayman, wood- fall off, to apostatize; to break off, to stop abman, and horsecourser, require an explanation; ruptly; to bear out, to justify; to fall in, to but of thieflike, or coachdriver, no notice was comply; to give over, to cease ; to set off, to emneeded, because the primitives contain the mean- bellich; to set in, to begin a continual tenour; ing of the compounds.
to set out, to begin a course or journey ; to take Words arbitrarily formed by a constant and off, to copy ; with innumerable expressions of settled analogy, like diminutive adjectives in the same kind, of which some appear wildly irish, as greenish, bluish; adverbs in ly, as dully, regular, being so far distant from the sense of openly ; substantives in ness, as vileness, faulti- the simple words, that do sagacity will be able ness; were less diligently sought, and many to trace the steps by which they arrived at the sometimes have been omitted, when I had no present use. These I have noted with great authority that invited me to insert them; not care; and though I cannot flatter myself that that they are not genuine and regular offsprings the collection is complete, I believe I have so of English roots, but because their relation to far assisted the students of our language that the primitive being always the same, their sig- this kind of phraseology will be no longer insunitication cannot be mistaken.
perable ; and the combinations of verbs and
parThe verbal nouns in ing, such as the keeping ticles, by chance omitted, will be easily exof the castle, the leading of the army, are always plained by comparison with those that may be neglected, or placed only to illustrate the sense found. of the verb, except when they signify things as Many words yet stand supported only by the well as actions, and have therefore a plural name of Bailey, Ainsworth, Philips, or the number, as dwelling, living; or have an absolute contracted Dict. for Dictionaries, subjoined ; of and abstract signification, as colouring, painti these I am not always certain that they are read learning.
in any book but the works of lexicographers. The participles are likewise omitted, unless, of such I have omitted many, because I bad by signifying rather habit or quality thap ac- never read them; and many I have inserted, tion, they take the nature of adjectives, as a because they may perhaps exist, though they thinking man, a man of prudence; a pacing have escaped my notice : they are, however, to horse, a horse that can pace: these I have ven. be yet considered as resting only upon the credit tured to call participal adjectives. But neither of former dictionaries. Others, which I con- ! are these always inserted, because they are com- sidered as useful, or know to be proper, though monly to be understood without any danger of I could not at present support them by authorimistake, by consulting the verb.
ties, I have suffered to stand upon my own atObsolete words are admitted when they are testation, claiming the same privilege with my found in authors not obsolete, or when they predecessors, of being sometimes credited withhave any force or beauty that may deserve re- out proof. vival.
The words, thus selected and disposed, are As composition is one of the chief character. grammatically considered; they are referred to istics of a language, I have endeavoured to make the different parts of speech ; traced when they some reparation for the universal negligence of are irregularly inflected, through their various iny predecessors, by inserting great numbers of terminations; and illustrated by observations, compounded words, as may be found under af- not indeed of great or striking importance, seter, fore, new, night, fair, and many more. parately considered, but necessary to the eluciThese, numerous as they are, might be multi-dation of our language, and hitherto neglected plied, but that use and curiosity are here satis- or forgotten by English grammarians. tied, and the frame of our language and modes That part of my work, on which I expect of our combination amply discovered.
malignity most frequently to fasten, is the erpla. Of some forms of composition, such as that nation ; in which I cannot hope to satisfy those, by which re is prefixed to note repetition, and un who are perhaps not inclined to be pleased, since to signify contrariety or privation, all the exam- I have not always been able to satisfy myself. ples cannot be accumulated, because the use of To interpret a language by itself, is very diffithese particles, if not wholly arbitrary, is so cult; many words cannot be explained by sylittle limited, that they are hourly affixed to new nonimes, because the idea signified by them has
not more than one appellation; nor by para- | when Tully owns himself ignorant whether phrase, because simple ideas cannot be described. lessus, in the twelve tables, means a funeral When the nature of things is unknown, or the song or mourning garment i and Aristotle doubts notion unsettled and indefinite, and various in whether oüpsus in the Iliad signifies a mule or various minds, the words by wbich such no- muleteer, I may surely, without shame, leave tions are conveyed, or such things denoted, will some obscurities to happier industry, ur future be ambiguous and perplexed. And such is the information. fate of hapless lexicography, that not only dark- The rigour of interpretative lexicography reness, but light, impedes and distresses it; things quires that the explanation and the word ermay be not only too little, but too much known, plained should be always reciprocal ; this I have to be happily illustrated. To explain, requires always endeavoured, but could not always atthe use of terms less abstruse than that which tain. Words are seldom exactly synonimous; is to be explained, and such terms cannot always a new term was not introduced, but because be found; for as nothing can be proved but by the former was thought inadequate ; names, supposing something intuitively known, and therefore, have often many ideas, but few ideas evident without proof, so nothing can be defined have many names. It was then necessary to but by the use of words too plain to admit a de- use the proximate word, for the deficiency of finition.
single terms can very seldom be supplied by Other words there are, of which the sense is circumlocution; nor is the inconvenience great too subtle and evanescent to be fixed in a para- of such mutilated interpretations, because the phrase ; such are all those which are by the sense may easily be collected entire from the grammarians termed expletives, and in dead examples. languages are suffered to pass for empty sounds, In every word of extensive use, it was requiof no other use than to fill a verse, or to modu- site to mark the progress of its meaning, and late a period, but which are easily perceived in show by what gradations of intermediate sense living tongues to have power and emphasis, it has passed from its primitive to its remote and though it be sometimes such as no other form of accidental signification ; so that every foregoing expression can convey.
explanation should tend to that which follows, My labour has likewise been much increased and the series be regularly concatenated from by a class of verbs too frequent in the English the first notion to the last. language, of which the signification is so loose This is specious, but not always practicable ; and general, the use so vague and indeterminate, kindred senses may be so interwoven, that the and the senses detorted so widely from the first perplexity cannot be disentangled, nor any reaidea, that it is hard to trace them through the son be assigned why one should be ranged before maze of variation, to catch them on the brink the other. When the radical idea branches out of utter inanity, to circumscribe them by any into parallel ramifications, how can a conselimitations, or interpret them by any words of cutive series be formed of senses in their nature distinct and settled meaning ; such are bear, collateral ? The shades of meaning sometimes break, come, cast, full, get, give, do, pul, set, go, pass imperceptibly into each other, so that run, make, take, turn, throw. If of these the though on one side they apparently differ, yet it whole power is not accurately delivered, it must is impossible to mark the point of contact. Ideas be remembered, that while our language is yet of the same race, though not exactly alike, are living, and variable by the caprice of every one sometimes so little different, that no words can that speaks it, these words are bourly shifting express the dissimilitude, though the mind easily their relations, and can no more be ascertained perceives it when they are exhibited together; in a dictionary, than a grove, in the agitation of and sometimes there is such a confusion of aca storm, can be accurately delineated from its ceptations, that discernment is wearied, and dispicture in the water.
tinction puzzled, and perseverance herself hurThe particles are among all nations applied ries to an end, by crowding together what she with so great latitude, that they are not easily cannot separate. reducible under any regular scheme of expli- These complaints of difficulty will, by those cation; this difficulty is not less, nor perhaps that have never considered words beyond their greater in English, than in other languages. I popular use, be thought only the jargon of a have laboured them with diligence, I hope with man willing to magnify his labours, and procure success; such at least as can be expected in a veneration to his studies by involution and obtask, which no man, however learned or saga- scurity. But every art is obscure to those that cious, has yet been able to perform.
have not learned it ; this uncertainty of terms, Some words there are which I cannot ex- and commixture of ideas, is well known to those plain, because I do not understand them; these who have joined philosophy with grammar; and might have been omitted very often with little if I have not expressed them very clearly, it inconvenience, but I would not so far indulge inust be remembered that I am speaking of that my vanity is to decline this confession; for which words are insufficient to explain.