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(3) Singular nouns or pronouns separated by or or nor, require a singular verb.
I. Singular and plural nouns or pronouns separated by or or nor, require a plural verb.*
(4) II. When nouns and pronouns of the same number, but of different persons, are separated by or or nor, the verb agrees in person with its nearest nomina
Air or gas is but an accidental Neither officer nor soldiers state, in which any body may ex. know their duty. ist according to the degree of Either the master the heat producing it.
scholars are in fault. The elevation or depression You or I am to give instrucof a fluid surface, usually called tions. a wave, continues to rise and fall, William or you are to visit or to oscillate, for some time him. with a gradually diminishing force.
Affectation, or feigned meek. He or they guilty. ness, not the offspring of Either I or thou mistruth.
taken. Neither precept nor discipline You or he grossly de. so forcible as example.
ceived. Neither oxygen nor any of
deceived me. the unmixed gases s.
ts The maelstrom on the coast animal life.
of Norway, or such whirlpools, Poverty or disappointments produced by the currents
him from fulfilling his meeting with obstacles below, engagements.
which throw them into gyration.
He or you
* In all such forms of expression, the plural noun or pronoun should be placed next to the verb. In parsing such sentences, the ellipses must be supplied, and the singular form of the verb made to agree with the singular noun or pronoun; as,-Either the master is in fault or the scholars are in fault.
+ The ellipses must also be supplied in these forms of expression; as,—You are to give instructions, or I am to give them.
When the nominative case includes more objects than one, the verb must be in the plural number.
Worldlings and sinners some- The wicked think they act with times pray for conversion, and impunity, when they are puare afraid of being heard. nished with the very blindness
In the lower jaw, the muscles by which they sin. act with mechanical advantage, or lever-power.
The teeth c -e a beauti
-y in their ful set of chisels and wedges. hearts the principles of morality The virtuous
careful as well as the first buds of cornot to pass from innocent mirth ruption. to scoffing.
at our own cost Rash judgments p
e what the world is. several pernicious effects.
Many-called, but few The arrogant and presumptu- chosen.
upon others as mean and abject.
No more shall nation against nation rise,
with hateful eyes-
e rage no more ;
(1) Singular nouns and pronouns connected by and, require a plural verb.
I. Nominatives in the singular number, coupled by and,—and which refer to the same object,-or when preceded by a distributive adjective, require a singular verb.
(2) II. When several nominatives of different per
sons are joined by and, the plural pronoun agrees in person with the first in preference to the second, and with the second in preference to the third.
Oxygen and azote form atmos- Each door and window was pheric air.
crowded with spectators. He and she are near relatives. II. You and I are attentive to
The earth and moon have a our studies. tendency to approach each other. He and you will visit your
Tin and lead cohere when friends. pressed together between the He and I are going to our strong rollers of a flatting-mill. work.
I. Every diver and swimmer Thou and John divided it behas his ears full of water, and tween you. cares not.
Peter, James, and John
Chymistry and natural philo. the favourite disciples of our sophy - taught much better Divine Redeemer.
now than they formerly. Necessity and experience Courage and patience animals to preserve the centre of necessary in every enterprise. gravity of their bodies.
Every landscape and every Pride and impious philosophy other object we behold - -pourit the Gospel.
trayed on the retina of the eye. Sea-sand, or flint and soda, That eminent preacher and when heated together, unite, and theologian
educated in that most useful substance Maynooth College. called glass.
Let them and you attend to Sulphur and iron combine and
-e those beautiful cubes You and I are guarantees by of pyrites, or gold-like metal,
bond. which are seen in slate.
that the The candour and openness of whale is the largest of all anichildren not last long. mals.
He hung his head, each nobler aim
And hope and feeling which had
Fresh o'er him,--and he wept, he wept !
When a singular noun or pronoun is connected with any form of words by the preposition with, the verb must be in the singular number, and being the only word which combines the agency of two or more into
James with Anne goes to school.*
My uncle with his sons was in town yesterday.
Prosperity with humility renders its possessor truly amiable,
The side A., with the sides B. and C., composes the triangle.
One with nineteen
A human body in a healthy twenty.
state, with a chest full of air, Jupiter with his belts
lighter than water. distinguished by his splendour The blue vault of heaven, with in the starry firmament.
all its luminaries, pourLead with oxygen
red trayed on the retina of the eye. lead.
The Turkish camp, with its The human skeleton with its immense riches, w
the naked ribs an object humi- | prize of Sobieski and his gallant liating to the pride of man. Poles.
* Grammarians differ in opinion as to whether the verb should be singular or plural in sentences of this nature. We are of opinion that in all such expressions, the verb should be in the singular number. In the sentence," James with Anne goes to school," James is the subject of discourse; and though the fact of Anne's going to school is also expressed, yet, Anne is not the subject of the verb, but the object of the preposition with. The drift of the sentence is to show that James, in company with Anne, goes to school; not that James and Anne go to school. In the next example, uncle, not sons, is the subject of the verb; and though the sons were in town as well as the uncle, our object is not to state anything of the sons than simply to say, that the uncle, accompanied by his sons, was in town. In the sentence, “ Prosperity with humility," &c., prospe. : rity is the subject, and humility the object, of the preposition with. The ellipsis being, supplied, the sentence would be, “Prosperity renders its possessor truly amiable, when accompanied with humility.” In the next example it is ob. jected to the singular form of the verb, that the side A could not compose the triangle, and consequently could not be the sole nominative case :-true, the side A could not form a triangle, neither could the sides B and C without the side A: but supply the ellipsis thus: “The side A (united) with B and C, composes the triangle," and any difficulty in adopting the singular form will disappear.
Lennie remarks, that “wherever the poun or pronoun after with, exists, acts, or suffers jointly with the singular nominative before it, the verb should be plural ;" as--The general with his men were taken prisoners; but he leaves unno
(3) Collective nouns, or nouns of multitude, may be in the singular or plural number, and must have verbs to agree with them accordingly. I. When
word or circumstance conveys the idea of division or separation, the noun is to be considered as plural.
The meeting was large.
The jury were divided. These people have a lofty no- The French fleet were distion of themselves.
persed by a storm off Cape Clear The regiment consists of a thou- in 1796. sand men.
people aim at by That assembly not agreed such conduct ?
on the corn-law question. The British navy
Congress not now powerful than that of any other sembled. nation.
The multitude always The British Parliament from each other. liable to be dissolved at the will of the sovereign.
ticed the difficulties which attend the adoption of this form of the verb. For if the verb must be plural, then the words general and men should be the nominative case; and if so, the word men could not be the objective case governed by the preposition with; and in such a case with would exist very anomalously as a preposition. If for men, or for any other form of words which may follow with, we substitute the pronoun, the propriety of adopting the singular form of the verb will be still more obvious. For then, making with a preposition, the sentence would be, “The general with them (his men) was taken prisoner." But should the plural form of the verb be adopted, the sentence should be, “The general with they (his men) were taken prisoners ;" as in this case, with should be considered a conjunction, and they or men as part of the nominative case to the plural verb. The impropriety of making with a conjunction, and placing the nominative case of the pronoun immediately after it, is too evident to need any further comment, as such a form of expression is harsh and disagreeable, and should be avoided.
In such ambiguous forms of expression as, “She with her sisters are well," in which we are at a loss to know whether the sisters are included, or whether she alone is well when in company with her sisters, we would recommend the use of the conjunction and, to avoid the doubts and difficulties which unavoidably arise by using with.