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A Brief History of the English Language and Literature, Vol. 2 (of 2) by Meiklejohn, John Miller Dow, 1830-1902

A Brief History of the English Language and Literature, Vol. 2 (of 2) by Meiklejohn, John Miller Dow, 1830-1902

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LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE
BY
J. M. D. MEIKLEJOHN, M.A.
Professor of the Theory, History, and Practice of Education
in the University of St. Andrews, Scotland
BOSTON
D. C. HEATH & CO., PUBLISHERS
1887
Copyright, 1887,
By D. C. Heath & Co.
iii
PUBLISHER\u00e2\u2014\ue000S NOTICE.
The present volume is the second part of the author\u00e2\u2014\ue018s \u00e2\u2014\ue01bEnglish Language\ue001Its Grammar, History, and
Literature.\u00e2\u2014\ue01c It includes the History of the English Language and the History of English Literature.

The first part comprises the department of Grammar, under which are included Etymology, Syntax, Analysis,
Word Formation, and History, with a brief outline of Composition and of Prosody. The two may be had
separately or bound together. Each constitutes a good one year\u00e2\u2014\ue018s course of English study. The first part is
suited for high schools; the second, for high schools and colleges.

The book, which is worthy of the wide reputation and ripe experience of the eminent author, is distinguished
throughout by clear, brief, and comprehensive statement and illustration. It is especially suited for private
students or for classes desiring to make a brief and rapid review, and also for teachers who want only a brief
text as a basis for their own instruction.

LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE
1
v
PREFACE.

This book provides sufficient matter for the four years of study required, in England, of a pupil-teacher, and also for the first year at his training college. An experienced master will easily be able to guide his pupils in the selection of the proper parts for each year. The ten pages on the Grammar of Verse ought to be reserved for the fifth year of study.

It is hoped that the book will also be useful in Colleges, Ladies\u00e2\u2014\ue018 Seminaries, High Schools, Academies,
Preparatory and Normal Schools, to candidates for teachers\u00e2\u2014\ue018 examinations and Civil Service examinations,
and to all who wish for any reason to review the leading facts of the English Language and Literature.

Only the most salient features of the language have been described, and minor details have been left for the
teacher to fill in. The utmost clearness and simplicity have been the aim of the writer, and he has been obliged
to sacrifice many interesting details to this aim.

The study of English Grammar is becoming every day more and more historical\ue002and necessarily so. There
are scores of inflections, usages, constructions, idioms, which cannot be truly or adequately explained without
a reference vi to the past states of the language\ue003to the time when it was a synthetic or inflected language, like
German or Latin.

The Syntax of the language has been set forth in the form of Rules. This was thought to be better for young
learners who require firm and clear dogmatic statements of fact and duty. But the skilful teacher will slowly
work up to these rules by the interesting process of induction, and will\ue004when it is possible\ue005induce his pupil
to draw the general conclusions from the data given, and thus to make rules for himself. Another convenience
that will be found by both teacher and pupil in this form ofrules will be that they can be compared with the
rules of, or general statements about, a foreign language\ue006such as Latin, French, or German.

It is earnestly hoped that the slight sketches of the History of our Language and of its Literature may not only
enable the young student to pass his examinations with success, but may also throw him into the attitude of
mind of Oliver Twist, and induce him to \u00e2\u2014\ue01bask for more.\u00e2\u2014\ue01c

The Index will be found useful in preparing the parts of each subject; as all the separate paragraphs about the
same subject will be found there grouped together.
J. M. D. M.
vii
CONTENTS.
Italicized items were added by the transcriber. As explained in the Publisher\u00e2\u2014\ue018s Notice, this text is the
second of two volumes; pagination was continuous, beginning at 193 for this volume.
History of the English Language and Literature
PUBLISHER\u00e2\u2014\ue018S NOTICE.
2
PART III.

PAGE
The English Language, and the Family to which it belongs 193
The Periods of English

198
History of the Vocabulary
202
History of the Grammar
239
Specimens of English of Different Periods
250
Modern English
258
Landmarks in the History of the English Language
266
PART IV.
History of English Literature
271
Our Oldest English Literature
271
The Fourteenth Century
280
The Fifteenth Century
286
The Sixteenth Century
289
The Seventeenth Century
298
The First Half of the Eighteenth Century
311
The Second Half of the Eighteenth Century
323
The First Half of the Nineteenth Century
336
The Second Half of the Nineteenth Century
353
Tables of English Literature
367
Index
381
Publisher\u00e2\u2014\ue003s Advertising
Ad 1
191
PART III.
THE HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE
193
INTRODUCTION.

1. Tongue, Speech, Language.\ue007We speak of the \u00e2\u2014\ue01bEnglish tongue\u00e2\u2014\ue01c or of the \u00e2\u2014\ue01bFrench language\u00e2\u2014\ue01c;
and we say of two nations that they \u00e2\u2014\ue01bdo not understand each other\u00e2\u2014\ue018s speech.\u00e2\u2014\ue01c The existence of these
three words\ue008speech,tongue,language\ue009proves to us that a language is somethingspoken,\ue00athat it is a
number ofsounds; and that the writing or printing of it upon paper is a quite secondary matter. Language,
rightly considered, then, is an organised set of sounds. These sounds convey a meaning from the mind of the
speaker to the mind of the hearer, and thus serve to connect man with man.

History of the English Language and Literature
CONTENTS.
3

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