Essentials of English Grammar: For the Use of Schools

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Fb&c Limited, 2015 M06 11 - 295 pages
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Excerpt from Essentials of English Grammar: For the Use of Schools

In preparing the present work, my intention has been to make it fulfil strictly the promise of its title. I have endeavored to put before the learner those matters which are of most essential consequence to him, those which will best serve him as preparation for further and deeper knowledge of his own language, for the study of other languages, and for that of language in general. That the leading object of the study of English grammar is to teach the correct use of English is, in my view, an error, and one which is gradually becoming removed, giving way to the sounder opinion that grammar is the reflective study of language, for a variety of purposes, of which correctness in writing is only one, and a secondary or subordinate one - by no means unimportant, but best attained when sought indirectly. It should be a pervading element in the whole school and home training of the young, to make them use their own tongue with accuracy and force; and, along with any special drilling directed to this end, some of he rudimentary distinctions and rules of grammar are conveniently taught; but that is not the study of grammar, and it will not bear the intrusion of much formal grammar without being spoiled for its own ends.

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