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Cornell  University 

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tine  Cornell  University  Library. 

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OF    THE 



Professor  of  Laiin,  University  College^  Liverpool ', 

Newton  School^  Rock  Ferry ^  Birkenhead  ', 


Professor  of  Greek  in  Cornell  University^   U^S.A, 

8vo.  10s.  6d. 
London:    LONGMANS,     GREEN,    &     CO, 


OF    THE 







H.  A.  STRONG,  M.A.,  LL.D. 



LONGMANS,     GREEN,     AND     CO. 

AND  NEW  YORK:  15  EAST  16'"  STREET 


An  attempt  has  been  made  to  assist  in  making  Professor 
Paul's  great  work  better  known  to  the  English  public,  by 
translating^  it  into  English.  In  the  original,  by  far  the 
greater  number  of  illustrative  instances  are  drawn  from  the 
German  language.  In  cases -where  English  examples 
served  precisely  the  same  purpose  as  those  drawn  from 
German  they  have  been  frequently  substituted.  Additional 
examples,  mainly  drawn  from  English,  have  been  inserted 
in  brackets.  It  is  hoped  that  it  may  be  possible  on  a 
future  occasion  to  add  an  Appendix  fully  illustrating  the 
principles  laid  down  by  Paul  from  the  English  and  other 
languages.  Several  references  have  been  made  to  works 
which  have  been  published  since  the  appearance  of  Paul's 
work,  such  as  the  most  recent  productions  of  Darmesteter, 
Skeat,  and  Regnaud. 

The  versions  of  Chapters  xvi.,  xviii.,  and  part  of 
Chapter  xx.,  have  been  contributed  by  Professor  C.  H. 
Herford  of  University  College,  Aberystwyth,  who  has 
also  revised  the  whole. 


To  Dr.  Kuno  Meyer  the  thanks  of  the  Translator 
are  due  for  valuable  help, 

Thanks  are  due  to  Professor  Paul  and  Herr  Niemeyer 
for  their  kind  approval  of  the  intention  to  publish  a  trans- 
lation of  the  Principien  der  Sprachgeschichte. 


Even  before  the  first  edition  of  this  work  had  issued  from  the 
press,  I  could  not  doubt  that  my  explanations  greatly  needed 
supplementing,  as  many  important  sides  of  the  life  of  language 
were  but  very  scantily  touched  on.  I  therefore  considered  the 
form  which  such  supplement  should  take,  and  was  uninterruptedly 
employed  in  getting  together  whatever  matter  seemed  to  me 
serviceable  for  the  purpose.  The  demand,  however,  of  my  pub- 
lisher for  the  preparation  of  a  second  edition  came  upon  me  too 
quickly  and  unexpectedly  to  permit  me  to  carry  out  my  inten- 
tions. I  should  even  now  have  preferred  to  postpone  bringing  it 
out,  in  order  to  permit  much  to  come  better  to  maturity.  But  I 
,  was  finally  obliged  to  yield  to  the  justifiable  pressure  put  upon 
me  by  the  publisher,  owing  to  the  large  demand  for  the  book. 

This  second  edition  will  not  find  much  more  favour  in  the  eyes 
of  many  of  my  professional  brethren  than  the  first.  Some  will 
find  it  too  general,  some  too  elementary.  Many  will  wish  for 
something  more  cleverly  expressed.  I  declare,  once  for  all,  that  I 
write  for  those  alone  who  are  convinced  with  myself  that  science 
is  not  forwarded  by  complicated  hypotheses,  however  cleverly  and 
sagaciously  they  may  be  puzzled  out ;  but  by  simple  fundamental 
thoughts,  which  are  evident  in  themselves,  but  only  prove  fruitful 
if  they  are  brought  to  clear  consciousness  and  carried  out  with 
strict  consistency. 

The  following  chapters  have  been  taken  with  some  unimportant 
changes  from  the  first  edition  : — Chapter  xiii.  (  =  viii.),  xiv.  (  =  vii.), 
xxi.  (  =  xiii.),  xxiii.  (  =  xiv.),  also  ix.  (  =  x.),  with  the  exception  of  the 


omission  of  the  last  section,  the  object  of  which  has  been  treated 
at  greater  length  in  chapter  vi.  The  following  chapters  have 
received  changes  or  additions  of  greater  importance  :  the  Introduc- 
tion (  =  chap.  i.),  chap.  ii.  (  =  xii.),  iii.  (  =  iii.),  more  still  xix.  (  =  ix. 
from  p.  1 60),  XX.  (  =  xi.),  x.  (  =  the  chief  parts  of  v.  and  vi.).  The 
following  chapters  are  entirely  new  or  answer  to  merely  short 
indications  in  the  first  edition — iv.  vi.  vii.  viii.  xii.  xv.  xvi.  xvii. 
xviii.  and  xxii. 

It  was  originally  my  intention  to  add  a  methodological  chapter 
on  the  distinction  between  sound-change  and  those  changes  of 
sound  which  are  determined  by  the  influences  of  function.  I  do 
not,  however,  wish  to  repeat  what  I  have  already  set  forth  at 
length  in  my  Beitrdge  zur  Gesch.  d.  deutschen  spr.  ji.  lit.  vi.  i.  sqq. 
I  certainly  see,  not  merely  from  the  philological  methods  pursued, 
but  also  from  the  theoretical  doctrines  laid  down  in  recent  years, 
that  the  positions  there  maintained  have'  met  with  little  recogni- 
tion. In  particular  they  have  been  ignored  by  all  those  who  have 
denied  that  any  considerable  advance  has  been  lately  made  in 
the  method  of  morphological  research. 

H.  PAUL. 

Freiburg  i.  'E.,June  1886. 



INTRODUCTION, .        xxi 

Necessity  for  a  general  theoretical  science  or  system  of  principles  to 
accompany  the  History  of  Language,  not  less  than  other  branches 
of  the  Science  of  History  —  Closer  definition  of  its  task  —  The 
doctrine  of  principles  at  the  same  time  the  basis  for  the  doctrine  of 
method — Transference  of  the  method  of  observation  usual  in  natural 
science  to  the  science  of  culture — The  science  of  language  admits 
of  more  perfect  methodical  treatment  than  other  historical  sciences 
— Co-operation  of  psychical  and  physical  factors  in  all  development 
of  culture — The  science  of  culture  always  a  social  science — Criticism 
of  the  '  popular  psychology  '  of  Lazarus  and  Steinthal — Reciprocal 
influence  of  mind  upon  mind  only  indirectly  possible  by  physical 
aid — Transformation  of  indirect  associations  into  direct — Peculiari- 
ties of  the  science  of  language  as  contrasted  with  other  sciences — 
Scientific  treatment  of  language  only  possible  by  means  of  histori- 
cal observation. 



Subject  of  the  science  of  language — Organisms  of  idea  groups  the  basis 
of  all  linguistic  action — Such  organisms  the  true  media  of  historical 
development — Requisites  for  the  description  of  a  condition  of  lan- 
guage—Change of  usage  is  the  result  of  the  ordinary  exercise  of 
speech — Language  develops  by  gradations— Classification  of  the 
changes — Grammar  and  Logic,  ..... 




Analogies  from  organic  nature— Statement  of  the  problem— Linguistic 
change  and  differentiation— Varying  states  of  intercourse— Indivi- 
dual spontaneity  and  social  influence — Mutual  independence  of 
each  differentiation— The  image  of  a  genealogical  tree  inadequate- 
Dialectical  divisions  graduated— The  essential  mark  of  a  dialect  its 
sounds — Technical  and  poetic  language,        .  .  •  .21 



The  active  factors  in  the  production  of  sound — Slight  consciousness  of 
the  element  of  a  word — The  word  a  continuous  series  of  infinitely 
numerous  sounds — Limits  to  power  of  distinguishing  sounds — 
Deviations  from  the  prescriptions  of  the  motory  sensation  inevitable 
— Modification  or  displacement  of  the  motory  sensation — Causes 
of  the  divergence — '  Convenience '  a  secondary  cause,  the  motory 
sensation  the  primary  cause — Control  through  the  sound-picture — 
Relation  of  the  individual  speaker  to  his  linguistic  milieu — Sound- 
changes  which  do  not  depend  on  a  displacement  of  the  motory 
sensation — Uniformity  of  the  laws  of  sound-change,  .  .  37 



Change  of  meaning  consists  in  a  widening  or  narrowing  of  its  scope 

Distinction  between  'usual'  and  'occasionar  meanings— Distinc- 
tion between  'abstract'  and  'concrete'  meanings— PJurahty  of 
meaning— Means  by  which  abstract  words  may  receive  in  their 
occasional  uses  a  concrete  meaning — Means  by  which  meanino-  is 
specialised — The  occasional  meaning  does  not  necessarily  include 


all  the  elements  of  the  'usual'  meaning — Transference  to  things 
spatially,  temporally,  or  causally  connected  with  the  original  denota- 
tion— Change  of  usage  effected  by  '  occasional '  modification — 
Classification  of  changes  of  meaning — Specialisation — Increase  of 
connotation — Limitation  to  a  part  of  the  original  connotation — 
Transference  to  things  spatially,  temporally,  or  causally  associated 
— Combination  of  the  above  classes — Change  of  meaning  in  groups 
of  words — Scope  of  meaning  conditioned  by  the  state  of  culture  of 
the  individual  speaker — Scope  of  meaning  conditioned  by  the  state 
of  culture  of  the  whole  society,  .....  65 



Material-  and  formal-groups — Proportion-groups — Material-formal  in- 
fluence of  proportional  groups  upon  speech  (analogical  creation) 
— Analogical  creation  in  syntax — Analogy  in  inflexion  and  word- 
formation —  Divergence  of  analogical  formation  from  usage  — 
Analogy  in  sound-substitution,  .....  92 


A  sentence  is  the  linguistic  expression  of  the  combination  of  several 
ideas— Means  of  denoting  the  combination— Means  of  distinguishing 
subject  and  predicate — Emphasis,  position,  etc. — Concrete  and 
abstract  sentences — Sentences  of  apparently  one  element  only — 
Impersonal  verbs — Negative  sentences— Sentences  of  assertion 
and  demand — Interrogative  sentences — Extension  of  the  sentence- 
Double  subject— Double  object— Use  of  a  sentence  as  subject  or 
predicate  —  Union  of  dependence  and  independence  —  Indirect 
speech— Sentence  in  apposition  to  a  noun^A  noun  in  apposition  to 
a  sentence— Parataxis— Graduated  approximation  to  hypotaxis— 
Transition  from  demand  or  interrogation  to  hypotaxis,  .  .       1  u 




Comparison  of  syntactical  witli  verbal  change  of  meaning— The  genitite 
—The  accusative— The  prepositions— Apposition  and  partitive  geni- 
tive—Subject of  a  verb— Substantive  and  adjectival  predicate- 
Participial  constructions — Conjunctions,  ....       147 


Definition— Contamination  (i)  Phonetic— (2)  Syntactical  contamination 
—Anomalies  (i)  Momentary— (2)  Usual— Pleonasms  arising  from 
contamination,    ......•• 




The  conditions  of  new  creatjon  still  present — Creation  has  never  wholly 
ceased — Application  to  original  creation  of  the  results  won  in  other 
departments  of  the  history  of  language — Interjections — Nursery 
language — The  first  creations  belonged  to  no  grammatical  category, 
denoted  complete  intuitions,  and  were  uttered  with  no  thought  of 
communication — Incapacity  of  primitive  man  to  produce  speech  at 
will — Reproduction  necessary  to  the  conception  of  language,  .       174 



Possibility  of  a  regularly  observed  system  of  grouping  in  each  linguistic 
period — System  conditioned  solely  by  correspondence  in  form  and 
meaning — Causes  of  isolation — Destruction  of  groups — (i)  Etymo- 
logico-phonetic  groups — (2)  Syntactical  groups — (3)  Formal  and 
material  groups  (a)  by  change  of  meaning,  {b)  by  change  of  sound — 


Reaction  by  aid  of  unification — Unification  of  differences  which 
result  from  difference  of  position  in  the  sentence — Unification  of 
phonetically  differentiated  forms  which  belong  to  the  same  stem — 
The  qualifies  of  unification  owing  to  favouring  and  hostile  conditions 
— (2)  Varying  cohesion  of  the  etymological  groups — Influence  of  the 
formal  grouping — Conversion  of  a  merely  formal  difference  into  a 
difference  of  meaning — Conversion  of  elements  of  the  stem  into 
inflexions — All  phonetic  changes  involuntary,  .  .  .       190 



Obliteration  of  distinctions  by  sound-change — Union  of  unrelated  words 
in  material  groups  (simplest  form  of  popular  etymology) — Phonetic 
transformation  (complex  kind  of  popular  etymology) — Union  in 
formal  groups  {a)  where  function  is  the  same — Union  in  formal 
groups  {b)  where  the  'function  is  different,        ....      229 



Transference  into  another  group  changes  the  direction  of  analogical  for- 
mation— Consequences  of  the  mutation  of  an  appellative  into  a 
proper  name,  of  a  case  into  adverb,  of  the  fusion  of  a  syntactical 
combination  into  a  verbal  unity— Crystallisation— Operation  of 
change  of  meaning  on  the  construction— Construction  differently 
understood  owing  to  the  influence  of  a  synonym,        .  .  -251 



The  grouping  of  etymologically  connected  words  diverges  in  the  course 
of  time  from  that  required  by  their  formation  ;  hence  springs  analo- 
gical creation  on  a  new  basis— Examples— Fusion  of  two  suffixes- 
Displacement  of  relations  in  compounds,         .  .  •  .261 




Causes  of  superfluity  in  language— Tendency  to  eliminate  it— Elimina- 
tion and  utilisation— Phonetic  differentiation  for  the  purpose  of 
differentiating  meaning,  only  apparent— ^ ox\%  on  douilets—Ca.sts 
of  apparent  differentiation— Examples  of  real  differentiation— Cog- 
nate processes  as  a  result  of  partial  identity  of  meaning— Syntactical 
differentiation,     .  .  .  •  •  ■  •  .272 



The  original  harmony  between  psychological  and  grammatical  cate- 
gories is  in  course  of  time  disturbed  ;  tendency  to  remove  the  dis- 
crepancy— Gender — Number — Tense — Voice,  .  .  .       288 



The  divergence  of  psychological  and  grammatical  distribution — Duality 
and  multiplicity  of  elements — ^The  psychological  predicate — Psycho- 
logical subject  and  copula — Elements  which  are  regularly  psycho- 
logical subject  or  predicate — The  discrepancy  avoided  by '  peri- 
phrasis— The  discrepancy  eliminated — Psychological  treatment  of 
adverbial  determinants — Rarity  of  discrepancy  in  languages  of  slight 
formal  development — Change  of  functions  between  the  determinant 
and  the  determinate — Separation  of  elements  grammatically  con- 
nected— Genitive  and  adjective — Genitive  and  substantive — Verb 
and  adverb— Infinitive  and  an  element  dependent  on  it — Origin  of 
connecting  words — Indirect  reference  becomes  direct — An  element 
equally  related  to  two  other  elements  is  attracted  to  \he first — Com- 
pound sentences — Transition  from  dependence  to  independence — 
Inversion  of  the  relation  of  principal  and  subordinate  sentence — 
Impossibility  of  drawing  a  hard  and  fast  line  between  principal  and 
subordinate  sentences,   .  .  .  .  .  .  -31-' 




Concord  started  from  cases  in  which  one  word  came  to  agree  with 
another  without  regard  for  the  latter,  and  was  then  analogically 
extended  to  other  cases — Cases  in  which  the  secondary  growth  of 
concord  is  historically  traceable — Variation  of  concord  between 
two  parts  of  a  sentence — First  rudiments  from  which  concord 
proceede  .........      339 



Relative  economy  of  expression  depends  on  the  ««i?rf— Ellipse  either  to 
be  assumed  in  a  minimum  of  cases,  or  else  to  be  recognised  as  part 
of  the  essence  of  expression — Words  or  phrases  supplied — Absence 
of  links — A  psychological  subject  or  predicate  may  be  drawn  from 
the  situation — Isolated  sentences  in  form  dependent,  .  •       S"!' 



Original  new  creation  in  word-formation  secondary  in  its  nature — 
Growth  of  composition— Transition  from  syntactical  juxtaposition 
to  true  composition  of  a  verb  with  an  adverb — Of  a  verb  with  an 
objective-accusative— With  a  prepositional  determinant — Verbal 
complexes  which  have  the  character  of  compounds— Co-ordination 
between  the  elements  of  a  compound  and  an  independent  word— 
Sound-change  with  isolating  effect— Limits  within  which  the  com- 
pound appears  as  such— Origin  of  derivative  and  inflectional  suffixes 
—Formation  of  suffixes  constant  and  unceasing— Rise  of  new  suf- 
fixes—Rise  of  inflectional  suffixes— Criticism  of  the  analysis  of  Indo- 
European  '  grund-formen,'         ....••       ?P7 




The  division  of  the  parts  of  speech  due  to  consideration  not  of  any  logi- 
cal principle,  but  of  three  points — Meaning,  function,  and  inflexion — 
Criticism  of  the  usual  division— Finite  verb — Connecting-words,  con- 
junctions and  prepositions — Intermediate  stages  between  classes 
of  words— Substantive  and  adjective — Adverbs — Adjectives  used  as 
a  predicatival  attribute— Origin  of  prepositions  and  conjunctions — 
The  preposition — Conjunctions — Difference  between  preposition  and 
conjunction  in  the  simple  sentence,      .  .  .  .  "      403 


Advantages  and  shortcomings  of  writing  as  compared  with  spoken 
language— Alphabets  in  use  not  as  useful  as  they  might  be  made— 
Dialectical  differences  concealed  by  writing — Incapacity  of  writing 
to  communicate  alterations  of  pronunciation — Effect  of  fixity  of 
orthography— Natural  tendency  in  orthography  towards  greater 
fixity— Analogies  between  the  development  of  writing  and  that  of 
language — AboUtion  of  variations  in  sound-signs  of  identical  value 
— Effect  of  etymology,  .....,"  a-,<i 


Mixture  in  the  wider  and  the  narrower  sense— Mixture  of  distinct 
languages,  dialects,  and  stages  of  language— Mixture  originates  in 
individuals— Bilingualism— The  chief  modes  of  influence— A.  Adop- 
tion of  foreign  material— B.jysage  of  native  material  after  a  foreign 
model— Causes  of  the  adoption  of  words— Stages  in  the  process  of 
adoption— Treatment  of  foreign  phonetic  material— Assimilation  of 
words  already  adopted— Competition  among  languages  in  the  con- 
tribution of  loan-words— Pleonastic  combination  of  a  native  with  a 


foreign  suffix — Borrowing  of  derivative  suffixes — Influence  on  the 
inner  linguistic  form  of  language — Mixture  of  dialects— Borrowing 
from  an  older  period,     .......      456 



Intercourse  between  areas  lying  separate  from  each  other— For  a  common- 
language  to  be  created  the  necessity  for  it  must  be  felt— A  common- 
language  must  be  based  upon  an  existing  dialect — Circumstances 
which  must  necessarily  precede  the  formation  of  a  common-language 
— Development  necessary  even  in  an  artificial  language,       .  475 

INDEX, 503 


A.S.  =  Anglo-Saxon. 
Andr.  Volkset.  =  Andresen,  Uber  deutsche  volksetymologie.    4th  edition. 
Heilbronn,  1883. 
Andr.  Spr.  =  Andresen,  Sprachgehrauch  und  sprachrichtigkeit  im 
deutschen.     3d  edition.     Heilbronn,  1883. 
Delbruck  SF.  =  Delbruck,  Syntaktische  forschtmgen. 

Diez.  =  Diez,    Grammalik   der  romanischen.    sprachen.      4tli 
Draeg.  or  Draeger  =  Draeger,  Historische  syntax  der  lateinischen  sprache. 
2d  edition. 
DWb.  =  Deutsche!  Worterhuch  von  Jac.  und  Wilh.  Grimm. 
GOE.  =  Goethe. 

I.E.  =  Indo-European  (the  Indo-Gerraanic  of  the  author). 
Le.  =  Lessing. 
Lu.  =  Luther. 
,       M.H.G.  =  Middle  High  German. 
Madvig,  Kl.  schr.  =  Madvig,  JiTleiiie  schriften. 

Matzner  engl.  =  Matzner,  Englische  grammatik.    2d  edition. 
Matzner  franz.  =  Matzner,  Syntax  der  neufranzosischen  sprache. 
Michaelis  =  Caroline  Michaelis,  Romanische  wortschopfung. 
Morph.  Unt.  =  Morphologische  untersuchungen  auf  dem  geiie/e  der 
indogermaniscken.    sprachen    von     Osthoff  und 
N.H.G.  =  New  High  German. 

O.  F.  =  Old  French. 
O.H.G.  =  Old  High  German. 
O.N.  =  Old  Norse. 
SCHI.  =  Schiller. 
Sh.  =  Shakespeare. 
Steinthal,  Haupttyp.  =  Steinthal,  Characteristik  der  hauptiypen  des  mensch- 
{or  Typen).  lichen  sprachiaus. 

Wegener  =  Wegener,     Untersuchungen     iiber    die    grundfragen 
des  sprachlebens.     Halle,  1885. 
Ziemer  =  Ziemer,    Junggrammatische    streifziige    im    gehiete 
der  syntax.     Colberg,  1882. 
Ziemer,  Comp.  =  Ziemer,    Vergleichende  syntax  der  indogermauischen 
comfaration.     Berlin,  1884. 
Zschr.f.  Vdlkerps.  =  Zeitschrift    fUr     Volkerpsychologie,     herausg.     von 
Lazarus  und  Steinthal. 


LANGUAGE,  like  every  other  production  of  human  culture.  Necessity  o{ 
falls  under  the  cognisance  of  history;  but  the  history  of  doctrine  of 
language  like  every  other  branch  of  the  science  of  history  has,  side  by  side 
running  parallel  with  it,  a  science,  which  occupies  itself  with  ?^«  history  of 
general  conditions  of  the  existence  of  the  object  historically  developing, 
and ' investigates  the  nature  and  operations  of  the  elements  which 
throughout  all  change  remain  constant.     This  science  lacks  as  yet 
a  title  generally  applicable  and  admittedly  suitable.     The  name 
'philosophy    of   language'    implies    something    rather    different. 
And  in  any  case  there  seem  to  be  good  grounds  for  preferring 
to  avoid  this  expression.     Our  unphilosophical  age  readily  scents 
under  such  a  title  metaphysical  speculations  which  the  historical 
investigator   of  language   as   it  deems   may   well  discard.      The 
truth  is  that  the  science  of  which  we  are  thinking  is  philosophy 
in  the  same  way  as  physics  or  physiology  is  philosophy,  neither 
more   nor  less.     Least   of  all   are  we  justified  in  opposing  the 
historical   portion,  as   empirical,  to   this   general   portion   of  the 
science  of  language.     The  one  portion  is  just  as  empirical  as  the 

It    is   very  seldom   that   a   knowledge  of   the  laws  of   any  i,s  spe 
single  simple  experimental  science  suffices  to  enable  us  to  under-  Hl^^ 
stand  the  process  of  historical  development :  it  is  rather  in  the 
essence  of  all  historical  movement,  especially  where  this  is  con- 
nected with  any  department  of  human  culture,  that  very  numerous 

^  It  must  be  noticed  that  Paul  employs   the  word  '  culture '  where  we   should 
more  naturally  use  '  civilisation '- 


used  in  its  widest  sense,  and  not  confined  to  the  development  of 
the  human  race.  It  is  presumable  a  priori  that  certain  general 
conditions  of  fundamental  importance  will  be  found  to  constitute 
the  necessary  basis  for  every  kind  of  historical  development ;  it 
is,  however,  more  certain  still  that  the  development  of  each  object 
must  be  in  a  special  manner  conditioned  by  its  particular  nature. 
Whoever  undertakes  to  lay  down  the  principles  of  any  historical 
science  must  never  lose  sight  of  the  other  division,  especially  the 
most  closely  allied  branches  of  the  science  of  history,  so  as  thus 
to  grasp  the  most  general  leading  features,  and  not  lose  sight 
of  them  again.  On  the  other  hand,  however,  he  must  beware  of 
losing  himself  in  mere  generalities,  and  thereby  failing  to  notice 
the  special  application  to  the  special  case.  He  must  beware,  too, 
of  transferring  metaphorically  the  results  attained  in  different 
departments,  a  process  whereby  the  real  facts  which  form  the 
strict  object  of  investigation  are  merely  hidden. 
The  doctrine        It  is  not  Until  such  sciences  of  principles  are  founded  that  the 

of  principles  •    i    -  .         •  /•  i  . 

the  basis  of   special  mvestigation  of  history  finds  its  true  value.     Not  till  then 

the  doctrine      ,  i_  ■  •      i  i        • 

-  nethod.  does  historical  research  rise  above  the  mere  process  of  stringing 
together  apparently  accidental  dates,  and  in  the  general  applica- 
bility of  its  results  approach  the  exact  sciences,  which  would  fain 
dispute  its  right,  equal  to  their  own,  to  the  title  of  science.  Now  if 
the  science  of  principles  appears  to  be  the  highest  goal  to  which  all 
the  endeavours  of  special  sciences  are  directed,  we  must  remember, 
on  the  other  hand,  that  the  former  is  the  indispensable  guide  of  the 
latter,  without  whose  aid  it  cannot  advance  a  step  with  certainty 
beyond  mere  ascertained  facts  which  never  appear  in  any  other  way 
than,  on  the  one  hand,  as  fragmentary,  on  the  other  hand,  in  con- 
fused complications  which  have  previously  to  be  analysed.  The 
effectual  scrutiny  of  the  conditions  of  historical  growth,  taken  in 
conjunction  with  general  logic,  gives  at  the  same  time  the  basis  for 


to  the  science 

the  doctrine  of  method  which  has  to  be  followed  in  the  verification  of 
each  single  fact. 

It  cannot  be  maintained  that,  up  to  the  present  time,  a  spirit  of  Appii, 
equal  earnestness  and  equal  thoroughness  has  been  displayed  with  o°f  Liture 
respect  to  questions  of  principle  in  all  the  departments  of  historical  °^,oZoiZ^ 
research.  This  spirit  has  been  displayed  in  a  far  greater  degree  com'mon"in 
-with  respect  to  the  historical  branches  of  natural  science  than  to  Xa^z^ 
that  of  the  history  of  culture.  One  main  reason  for  this  difference 
is  that  the  difficulties  that  present  themselves  in  the  latter  case  are 
much  more  serious  than  in  the  former.  It  has,  as  a  rule,  to  deal 
with  far  more  complicated  factors,  and  the  confused  thread  of 
these  as  long  as  it  remain's  unravelled  renders  an  exact  knowledge 
of  the  causal  connexion!  an  impossibility.  We  have  further  to 
remember  that  its  most  important  basis,  viz.,  experimental  psycho- 
logy, is  a  science  of  very  recent  date,  and  has  only  lately  begun  to 
be  brought  into  any  kind  of  relationship  with  history.  On  the 
other  hand,  however,  in  the  same  proportion  as  the  difficulty 
manifested  itself  as  greater,  the  need  was  less,  or  at  any  rate 
less  sensible.  The  history  of  the  human  race  has  always  re- 
garded data  as  to  facts  proceeding  in  each  case  from  cotem- 
porary  witnesses  (though,  it  may  be,  arrived  at  through  several 
intermediate  links)  as  its  proper  source,  and  has  only  regarded  as 
of  secondary  importance  those  records,  the  products  ot  human 
culture,  which  have  approximately  maintained  the  form  given 
to  them  by  the  latter.  In  fact  we  even  hear  the  expressions  a 
*  historical '  and  '  prehistorical '  times,  and  the  limit  is  fixed  by 
the  commencement  of  historical  tradition.  For  the  former,  there- 
fore, the  picture  of  a  historical  development  is  already  given,  dis- 
torted as  this  picture,  may  be ;  and  it  is  easily  intelligible  that 
science  may  deem  it  has  done  its  part  with  the  critical  process  of  cor- 
recting this  picture,  and  may  even  proceed  deliberately  to  reject  all 


speculation  which  ventures  beyond  it.  The  question  is  very  dif- 
ferent with  the  prehistoric  period  of  human  culture,  and  even  with 
the  history  of  the  development  of  nature,  organic  and  inorganic, 
which  reaches  back  to  epochs  infinitely  more  remote.  In  this 
case,  hardly  any  historical  element  at  all  is  given  as  such.  All 
attempts  at  a  historical  apprehension — with  the  exception  of  the 
scanty  traditions  handed  down  by  older  times — depend  upon 
inferences  alone.  And  there  is  absolutely  no  result  to  be  attained 
without  confronting  the  questions  of  principle,  and  fixing  definitely 
the  general  conditions  of  historical  growth.  These  questions  of 
principle  have  therefore  always  stood  in  the  very  centre  of 
research ;  they  have  ever  been  the  point  of  conientioD  in  the 
conflict  of  opinions.  At  present  the  domain  of  organic  nature  is 
the  scene  of  the  fiercest  struggle ;  and  it  must  be  acknowledged 
that  it  is  here  that  the  thoughts  most  fruitful  for  the  understanding 
of  all  historical  development,  not  excluding  that  of  the  human  race, 
have  for  the  first  time  attained  a  certain  definiteness. 

The  tendency  of  science  is  at  present  apparently  to  extend  this 
speculative  method  of  regarding  subjects  to  the  history  of  culture 
as  well,  and  we  are  persuaded  that  this  tendency  will  assert  itself 
more  and  more  in  spite  of  all  opposition,  active  and  passive,  that 
may  be  brought  to  bear  against  it.  We  have  already  fully  con- 
ceded that  such  a  method  is  not  so  indispensable  a  need  for  the 
science  of  culture  as  it  is  for  natural  science,  and  that  for  the 
former  we  have  no  right  to  expect  any  such  far-reaching  results  as 
for  the  latter.  But  this  does  not  exempt  us  from  the  duty  of 
testing  exactly  what  results  we  can  attain ;  and  even  the  possi- 
bility of  a  negative  result  of  this  testing  process  does  not  prevent 
the  exact  definition  of  the  limits  of  our  knowledge  attainable  from 
possessing  what  may  prove  to  be  under  certain  circumstances  of 
considerable  value.     Besides,  we  have  as  yet  no  cause  to  despair 


of  actually  attaining  positive  results,  at  least   in  certain  depart- 
ments of  knowledge.     In  any  case  we  should  be  wholly  unjustified 
in  thinking  lightly  of  the  methodological  gain  accruing  from  a  dis- 
tinct statement  of  the  questions  of  principle.     We  merely  deceive 
ourselves,  if  we  think  we  can  state  the  simplest  fact  in  history  with- 
out some  accretion  of  speculation.      Indeed  we  always  speculate, 
though  perhaps  unconsciously,  and  we  have  to  set  it  down  to  a 
fortunate  instinct  if  we  hit  the  right  mark.     We  may,  very  probably, 
maintain  that  hitherto  the  very  methods  of  historical  research  in 
vogue  have  been  discovered  rather  by  instinct  than  by  any  many- 
sided  reflection  penetrating  the  inmost  essence  of  things.     And  the 
natural  result  of  this  is  that  a  quantity  of  personal  fancies  obtrude 
themselves,  giving  rise  to  an  endless  strife  of  opinions  and  schools. 
There  is  only  one  way  out  of  the  difficulty :   we  must  earnestly 
apply  ourselves  to  carry  these  methods  back  to  the  first  funda- 
mental principles,  and  reject  all  which  cannot  be  deduced   from 
these.     Now  these  principles,  as  far  as  they  are  not  actually  purely 
logical  in  their  nature,  result  precisely  from  the  examination  of  the 
essence  of  historical  development. 

There   is    no  branch   of  culture  in  which  the  conditions  ofThe==^»« 
its  development  permit  of  being  apprehended  with  such  exact- tt=-°^' 
ness  as  that  of  language,  and  it  follows  that  there  is  no  science  amo,« 'Jj= 
of  culture  whose   method   can   be  brought  to  such  a  degree  of-je-«°f 
perfection  as  that  of  the  science  of  language.     No  other  has  as  method. 
yet  been  able  to  transcend  so  far  the  limits  of  tradition  ;  no  other 
has    proportionately   proceeded   at  once  speculatively   and    con- 
structively.    It  is  mainly  owing  to  this  peculiarity  that  it  appears 
to  be  closely  related  to  the  historical  natural  sciences ;   and  this 
has  led  to  the  misdirected  attempt  at  excluding  them  from  the 
circle  of  the  sciences  of  culture.^     In  spite  of  this  position  which 
the  science  of  language  has  occupied  from  its  very  foundation,  we 
1  Prof.  Paul  understands  by  this  phrase  rather  what  we  should  express  by  mental 
and  moral  sciences. 


seem  far  removed  from  the  time  when  we  can  say  that  its  method 
is  worked  out  to  the  degree  of  perfection  of  which  it  is  capable. 
Even  now  a  tendency  has  set  in  which  makes  for  a  thorough 
subversion  of  that  method.  In  the  course  of  the  arguments  which 
have  been  brought  forward  on  both  sides,  it  has  clearly  come  out 
how  great  is  the  confusion  in  the  minds  of  many  investigators  of 
language,  even  as  to  the  elements  of  which  their  science  is  com- 
posed. It  is  precisely  these  arguments  which  have  immediately 
prompted  this  treatise.  Its  object  is  to  contribute  its  best  to 
infuse  lucidity  into  these  views,  and  to  aim  at  attaining  an  under- 
standing at  least  among  those  who  bring  to  their  task  an  un- 
prejudiced sense  for  truth.  It  is  to  this  end  of  main  importance  to 
set  forth  the  conditions  of  the  life  of  language,  scrutinising  them 
from  as  many  sides  as  possible,  and  thus  to  draw  the  fundamental 
lines  for  a  general  theory  of  the  development  of  language. 

Combination        We  divide  the  historical  sciences,  taken  in  their  widest  sense, 

of  psychical 

and  physical  into  the  two  main  groups  of  historical  natural  sciences  and  sciences 

elements  in 

all  culture,  of  culture}  The  characteristic  mark  of  culture  lies  in  the  co- 
operation of  psychical  with  other  factors.  This  seems  to  me 
to  be  the  single  possible  delimitation  of  its  area  as  against 
the  objects  of  natural  science  pure  and  simple.  Accordingly  we 
must  be  prepared,  indeed,  to  recognise  a  certain  culture  in  the 
animal  world,  and  we  must  reckon  the  history  of  the  development 
of  the  art-impulses  and  of  social  organisation  among  animals  as 
belonging  to  the  sciences  of  culture.  Such  a  course  can  only  be 
beneficial  to  the  right  appreciation  of  these  facts. 

The  psychical  element  is  the  most  essential  factor  in  all  movements 
of  culture :  everything  turns  on  it :  and  it  follows  that  psychology  ts 
the  most  important  foundation  of  the  whole  science  of  culture  taken 
in  its  highest  sense.    It  does  not,  however,  follow  that  the  psychical 

'  See  note  on  p.  xxvii. 


element  is  the  only  factor :  no  culture  is  possible  on  a  purely  psychical 
basis:  and  hence  it  seems,  to  say  the  least  of  it,  very  inaccurate  to 
define  the  sciences  of  culture  as  mental  sciences.    The  truth  is  that 
there  is  only  one  pure  mental  science,  that  is,  Psychology  regarded 
as  an  exact  science.     As  soon  as  we  enter  the  area  of  historical 
development  we  have   to   deal  with  physical  side   by  side  with 
psychical  forces.     The  human  mind  must  always  work  in  harmony  / 
with  the  human  body  and  with  its  environing  nature  in  order  to  ; 
bring  forth  any  product  of  culture ;  and  the  secret  of  its  growth, 
the  way  in  which    it   comes    to    its   completion,  depends    upon 
physical  no  less  than  on  psychical  conditions ;  and  both  these  sets 
of  conditions  must  necessarily  be  known  in  order  to  gain  a  perfect 
appreciation  of  historical  growth.     A  necessity  is  thus  imposed  of 
mastering  not  merely  psychology,  but  also  the  laws  according  to 
which  the  physical  factors  of  culture  move.     The  natural  sciences 
besides,  and    mathematics,  are    a   necessary  foundation    for   the 
sciences  of  culture.     If  we  are  not  commonly  conscious  of  this,  the 
reason  has  to  be  sought  in  the  fact  that  we  generally  speaking 
content  ourselves  with  an  unscientific  observation  of  daily  life,  just 
as  we  manage  fairly  well  with  what  we  commonly  understand  under 
the  name  of  history.     The  psychical  side  has  fared  in  much  the 
same  way,  and  notably  up  to  the  most  recent  times.     But  it  is  in- 
conceivable that,  without  the  aid  of  a  number  of  experiences  made 
as  to  the  physical  possibility  or  impossibility  of  a  process  occurring, 
any  one  should  be  in  a  position  to  understand  any  event  of  history 
or  to  practise  any  kind  of  historical  criticism.     It  seems  therefore 
to  follow  that  the  main  task\}f  the  doctrine  of  the  principles  of  the 
Science  of  Culture )is  to  expound  the  general  conditions  under  which 
the  psychical  and  physical  factors,  obeying  their  own   special  lawsy 
succeed  in  co-operating  for  a  common  purpose. 

The  task  of  the  doctrine  of  principles  presents  itself  in  a  some- 


The  science  what  different  lisfht  from  the  following  point  of  view.     The  science 

of  culture 

is  always      of  culturc  ts  ulwavs  a  social  science.     Not  till  society  is  formed  is 

a  social 

science.  culturc  possibk ;  society  gives  the  first  impulse  to  make  man  a 
historical  being.  It  is  no  doubt  true  that  a  human  mind  in  a 
state  of  entire  isolation  has  a  historical  development  of  its  own, 
and  this  too  with  respect  to  the  relation  to  its  body  and  its 
environment;  but  even  the  most  gifted  human  mind  could  only 
succeed  in  arriving  at  a  very  primitive  degree  of  development ; 
and  this  would  be  cut  short  by  death.  It  is  not  until  what  an 
individual  has  gained  becomes  transferred  to  other  individuals, 
and  till  several  individuals  co-operate  to  the  same  end,  that  a 
growth  beyond  these  narrow  limits  is  possible.  Not  merely  the 
industrial  arts,  but  every  kind  of  culture  depends  upon  the  principle 
of  the  division  of  labour  and  upon  co-operation.  The  most  special 
task  imposed  upon  the  doctrine  of  principles  with  regard  to  all 
social  science— the  task  whereby  it  maintains  its  independence  as 
against  the  exact  sciences  which  lie  at  its  base — seems  to  be 
that  of  showing  how  the  single  individual  is  related  to  the  com- 
munity ;  receiving  and  giving ;  defined  by  the  community  and 
defining  it  in  turn ;  and  how  the  younger  generation  enters  on 
the  heritage  of  the  elder. 

In  this  respect,  the  history  of  the  development  of  organic  nature 
approaches  closely  the  history  of  culture.  Every  higher  organisa- 
tion is  the  result  of  the  agency  of  a  quantity  of  cells  which 
co-operate  according  to  the  principle  of  division  of  labour,  and 
are  differentiated  in  their  configuration  according  to  this  prin- 
ciple. But  this  principle  is  active  even  within  the  single  cell, 
the  most  elementary  organic  formation  ;  and  it  is  owing  to  this 
that  maintenance  of  the  form  is  found  possible  amid  the  change 
of  material.  EacTi  organism  breaks  up  sooner  or  later ;  but  each 
may   leave   behind  it   remnants  detached  from  its  own  being,  in 


which  the  formative  principle,  to  which  it  owed  its  own  existence, 
actively  operates,  and  which  profits  by  every  step  forward  which  it 
has  succeeded  in  making  in  its  own  formation ;  always  assuming 
that  no  disturbing  influences  coming  from  without  interfere. 

It  might  seem  as  if  the  doctrine  of  the  principles  of  Social  CrWckmof 
Science  as  set  forth  by  us  were  identical  with  what  Lazarus  and  stXtL'f 
Steinthal  denominate  '  Volkerpsychologie,'  which  they  claim  to  ^pTZ'icgie. 
represent  in  their  journal.  But  the  two  are  far  from  coinciding. 
From  our  remarks  already  made  it  is  quite  evident  that  our  know-  ^  ' 
ledge  has  to  interest  itself  to  a  great  extent  in  what  does  not 
belong  to  psychology  at  all.  We  can  bring  the  influences, 
which  the  individual  experiences  from  society,  and  which  he  on 
his  side,  in  conjunction  with  the  rest,  makes  felt,  into  four  main 
categories.  In  the  first  place,  psychical  perceptions,  or  collections 
of  ideas  are  called  into  being  in  his  mind,  to  which  he  would  never 
have  attained  at  all,  or  at  all  events  much  less  readily,  if  others  had 
not  prepared  the  way  for  him.  In  the  second  place,  he  learns  to 
carry  out  certain  appropriate  movements  with  the  different  parts 
of  his  body,  which  eventually  serve  to  set  in  motion  foreign  bodies 
or  tools :  it  holds  true  in  the  case  of  these  also  that  without  the 
example  given  him  by  others  he  would  have  been  much  slower  in 
learning  them,  and  perhaps  never  have  mastered  them  at  all.  We 
thus  find  ourselves  upon  physiological  but  at  the  same  time  upon 
psychological  ground.  Movement  in  itself  is  physiological ;  but 
the  attainment  of  the  necessary  power  to  control  it  at  will,  which 
is  the  point  here  concerned,  involves  the  co-operation  of  psychical 
factors.  •  In  the  third  place,  natural  objects  worked  by  the  aid  of 
the  human  body,  or  merely  transferred  from  the  spot  where  they 
were  produced  with  the  view  of  serving  some  practical  purpose 
and  thus  becoming  tools  or  capital,  are  transferred  from  one 
individual  to  another,  from  an  elder  to  a  younger  generation  ;  and 


there  is  a  common  participation  of  different  individuals  whicli  takes 
place  in  the  process  of  working  or  shifting  these  objects.  In  the 
fourth  place,  individuals  exert  a  physical  force  on  each  other  which 
may  undoubtedly  operate  as  much  to  the  disadvantage  as  to  the 
advantage  of  progress,  but  which  is  inseparable  from  the  nature 
of  culture. 

Of  these  four  categories  the  first  is  at  all  events  the  only  one 
in  which  '  volkerpsychologie,'  in  the  sense  in  which  it  is  used  by 
Lazarus  and  Steinthal,  is  interested.  It  is  therefore  only  that 
part  of  our  doctrine  of  principles,  which  has  reference  to  this  first 
category,  which  might  be  supposed  to  tally  more  or  less  accurately 
with  this.  But  setting  aside  the  fact  that  this  category  cannot 
be  regarded  merely  as  isolated  from  the  rest,  it  remains  true  that 
what  I  have  in  my  mind  is  very  different  from  what  Lazarus  and 
Steinthal,  in  the  introduction  to  their  periodical  (vol.  i.  p.  i,  73), 
lay  down  as  the  object  of  '  volkerpsychologie  '. 

Much  as  I  appreciate  the  important  services  rendered  by  both 
these  writers  to  psychology,  and  especially  to  the  psychological 
method  of  treating  history,  still  it  appears  to  me  that  the  definitions 
proposed  in  this  introduction  are  untenable,  in  part  misleading,  and 
tending  to  conceal  the  real  state  of  things.  The  fundamental 
thought  pervading  the  whole  work  is  that  popular  psychology  bears 
exactly  the  same  relation  to  the  several  nations,  and  to  humanity 
as  a  whole,  as  that  which  we  denominate  by  the  simple  name  of 
psychology  bears  to  the  individual.  Now  precisely  this  thought 
seems  to  me  to  be  based  on  a  series  of  logical  confusions  ;  and  I 
am  compelled  to  see  the  reason  of  these  confusions  in  the  fact 
that  the  fundamental  difference  between  an  exact  and  a  historical 
science  has  not  been  maintained,^  but  the  two  are  continually 
invading  each  other's  domain. 

1  It  is  no  doubt  true  that  this  difference  is  hinted  at  on  p.  25555.,  where  a  distinction 


The  conception  of  "  popular  psychology  "  itself  fluctuates  be- 
tween two  essentially  different  ways  of  viewing  the  subject.  On  the 
one  hand,  it  is  regarded  as  the  doctrine  of  the  general  conditions 
of  mental  life  in  society;  on  the  other  hand,  it  is  regarded  as 
the  characterisation  of  the  mental  peculiarity  of  different  nations, 
and  as  an  inquiry  into  the  reasons  from  which  this  peculiarity 
took  its  origin.  On  p.  25  sqq.  these  two  views  of  science  are 
presented  as  two  portions  of  universal  science,  of  which  the  first 
forms  the  synthetic  foundation  of  the  second.  Now  according 
to  neither  of  these  views  does  popular  psychology  stand  in  the 
assumed  relation  to  individual  psychology. 

If  we  turn,  in  the  first  place,  to  the  second  view,  there  can 

is  drawn  between  the  "  synthetic  or  rational '  and  the  '  descriptive '  studies  of  natural 
science,  and  a  corresponding  division  of  national  psychology  is  attempted.  But  complete 
confusion  reigns,  e.g.  on  p.  15  sqq.  From  the  fact  that  theire  exist  only  two  forms  of  all 
being  and  growth,  viz.  nature  and  spirit,  the  authors  conclude  that  there  can  be  found 
only  two  classes  of  real  sciences — one  having  for  its  object  nature,  and  the  other  spirit. 
In  this,  therefore,  no  account  is  taken  of  the  circumstance  that  it  is  possible  for  sciences 
to  exist  whose  task  it  is  to  examine  the  reciprocal  effects  of  nature  and  spirit.  It  seems 
even  more  questionable  when  they  proceed  .  .  .  '  Accordingly  we  find  opposed  to  each 
other  natural  history  on  the  one  hand,  and  the  history  of  humanity  on  the  other. '  In 
this  case,  in  the  first  place,  'history'  must  be  taken  in  a  sense  very  different  from  that 
which  we  commonly  connect  with  the  word,  viz.,  as  the  knowledge  of  events  and  processes. 
But  how  does  the  '  humanity  '  come  to  stand  all  at  once  in  the  place  of  '  spirit '  ?  The 
contents  of  the  two  words  are  far  from  tallying.  Further,  it  is  laid  down  as  a  distinction 
between  nature  and  spirit  that  nature  moves  in  a  perpetual  round  of  her  processes 
according  to  fixed  laws,  in  which  the  different  courses  remain  isolated  and  independent, 
in  which  it  was  always  the  past  that  was  repeated,  and  nothing  new  could  arise  ;  while 
spirit,  it  is  said,  lives  in  a  series  of  interconnected  creations,  and  displays  progress.  This 
distinction,  thus  abstractly  stated,  is  unquestionably  inadequate.  Nature  as  well  as 
spirit — organic  nature  at  any  rate — moves  in  a  series  of  interconnected  creations ;  and  in 
nature  too  there  is  such  a  thing  as  progress.  On  the  other  side  it  is  nlaintained  by  the 
authors  that  spirit  moves  in  one  regulated  course,  in  a  perpetual  repetition  of  the  same 
fundamental  processes.  Now  here  we  have  a  confusion  of  two  contrasts  which  must  be 
kept  completely  apart  :  that  between  nature  and  spirit  on  the  one  hand,  and  between 
procedure  according  to  fixed  law  and  historical  development,  on  the  other.  We  can 
only  ascribe  it  to  this  confusion  that  the  authors  have  been  able  at  all  to  call  in  question 
whether  psychology  is  to  be  accounted  a  branch  of  the  science  of  nature  or  of  spirit,  and 
that  they  finally  decide  on  giving  it  a  place  between  the  two.  This  confusion  is,  to  be 
sure,  the  traditional  one  ;  but  it  is  time  that  we  broke  away  from  it  after  the  instances  of 
progress  made  by  psychology  on  the  one  hand,  and  the  science  of  organic  uatuie  on  the 


surely  be  nothing  but  the  characteristics  of  different  individuals  to 
answer  to  the  characteristics  of  different  nations.  This,  however, 
is  not  called  psychology  at  all.  Psychology  has  never  anything 
to  do  with  the  concrete  shaping  of  any  individual  human  spirit, 
but  with  the  general  conditions  of  spiritual  processes.  What 
then  justifies  us  in  employing  the  name  of  this  science  for  the 
description  of  the  concrete  form  assumed  by  the  mental  peculiarity 
of  a  people?  What  the  authors  are  thinking  of  is  nothing  but 
a  portion,  no  doubt  the  most  important  portion,  but  still  one 
that  admits  of  no  isolation,  of  what  has  been  elsewhere  called 
the  history  of  culture  or  '  philology,'  placed  however  on  a  psycho- 
logical basis,  a  demand  which  must  necessarily  be  made  at  the 
present  day  for  all  researches  based  upon  the  history  of  culture. 
This  is,  however,  no  exact  science  like  psychology,  and  no  doctrine 
of  principles,  or,  to  employ  the  expression  of  the  authors,  no 
synthetical  basis  for  the  history  of  culture. 

The  incorrect  parallels  thus  drawn  have  led  to  further  con- 
sequences hardly  admissible.  '  Popular  psychology,'  say  the 
authors,  '  has  to  deal  with  the  mind  of  the  entire  community,  which 
is  again  different  from  all  the  several  minds  which  belong  to  it, 
and  which  sways  them  all '  (p.  S).  Further  we  read  (p.  ii) :  'The 
facts  of  which  '  popular  psychology  '  takes  cognisance  exist  partly 
in  the  popular  mind,  conceived  as  a  unity,  and  in  the  relations 
between  its  several  elements  (as,  for  instance,  religion  and  art,  the 
state  and  morality,  language  and  intelligence,  etc.),  and  partly  in 
the  relations  between  the  single  minds  which  make  up  the  people. 
Here,  therefore,  the  same  fundamental  processes  appear  as  in 
individual  psychology,  only  on  a  more  complicated  and  extensive 
scale.'  Surely  this  is  to  conceal  the  true  nature  of  the  processes 
involved  by  assuming  a  series  of  abstractions.  All  psychical 
processes  come   to  their  fulfilment  in   individual   minds,  and    no- 


where  else.  Neither  the  popular  mind,  nor  elements  of  it,  such 
as  art,  religion,  etc.,  have  any  concrete  existence,  and  therefore 
nothing  can  come  to  pass  in  them  and  between  them.  Away, 
then,  with  these  abstractions !  For  '  away  with  all  abstractions ! ' 
must  be  our  watch  word  if  we  ever  wish  to  attempt  to  define 
the  factors  of  any  real  event  or  process.^  I  will  not  very 
seriously  reproach  the  authors  with  a  fault  often  met  with  at 
every  step  in  science,  and  which  even  the  most  careful  and  pro- 
found thinkers  do  not  always  avoid.  Many  an  inquirer  who  feels 
himself  at  the  high  level  of  the  nineteenth  century  smiles  with 
lofty  contempt  at  the  strife  of  the  nominalists  and  realists  of  the 
middle  ages,  and  fails  to  understand  how  people  can  have  been 
led  to  consider  the  abstractions  of  the  human  understanding  as 
actually  existing  things.  But  the  race  of  unconscious  realists 
is  far  from  extinct,  even  among  the  students  of  nature.  And 
among  our  students  of  civilisation  they  flourish  and  thrive  most 
markedly,  and  especially  among  the  very  class  which  piques  itself 
on  talking  in  Darwinian  metaphors.  But  quite  apart  from  this 
abuse,  the  epoch  of  scholasticism — indeed  the  epoch  of  mythology 
.  — is  far  from  lying  as  far  behind  us  as  seems  to  be  thought ;  our 
sense  is  too  much  entangled  in  the  toils  of  both,  because  they 
control  our  language,  which  cannot  break  loose  from  them.  The 
man  who  fails  to  employ  the  necessary  effort  of  thought  to  liberate 
himself  from  the  despotism  of  the  mere  word  will  never  rise  to 
an  unprejudiced  contemplation  of  things  as  they  are.  Psychology 
became  a  science  at  the  moment  when  she  ceased  to  acknowledge 

1  Misteli,  Zeitschrift  fur  Volkerpsychologie,  xiii.  385,  has,  curiously  enough,  so  mis- 
apprehended me  as  to  suppose  that  I  would  hear  of  no  abstractions  at  all  being  made. 
Of  course  I  mean  merely  that  no  abstractions  must  be  allowed  to  interpose  an  obstruction 
between  the  eye  of  the  observer  and  the  actual  things,  so  as  to  prevent  him  from  grasping 
the  connexion  of  cause  and  effect  among  the  latter.  The  instruction  which  he  imparts  to 
me  on  the  value  of  abstracting  is  therefore  just  as  superfluous  as  his  critical  remark  on 
the  fact  that  I  actually  make  more  extensive  abstractions  than  others. 


the  abstractions  of  mental  powers  as  something  really  existing. 
Thus,  perhaps,  it  will  come  into  our  power  to  gain  important 
conquests  in  many  domains,  solely  by  setting  resolutely  aside 
abstractions  bearing  the  stamp  of  realities,  which  obtrude  them- 
selves between  the  eye  of  the  observer  and  the  concrete  pheno- 
mena, and  disturb  his  vision. 

I  beg  that  these  remarks  may  not  be  regarded  as  a  mere 
digression.!  They  refer  to  what  we  ourselves  have  in  the  following 
pages  to  observe  with  regard  to  the  development  of  language,  and 
what,  on  the  other  hand,  the  exposition  of  Lazarus  and  Steinthal 
does  not  permit  us  to  recognise  as  likely  to  be  of  any  service.  We 
pass  naturally  from  this  point  to  the  criticism  of  the  first  apprecia- 
tion of  the  conception  o{  folk-psychology. 
The  natural         As  wc,  of  course,  cannot  here  reckon  with  a  general  mind,  and 

influence  of 

minds  with  elements  of  this  general  mind,  it  follows  that  in  popular 

only  possible 

by  physical   psychology  wc  cannot  possibly  have  any  concern   except   with 


relations  existing  between  single  minds.  But  the  assertion  that  in 
this  the  same  fundamental  processes  display  themselves  as  in 
individual  psychology  is,  for  the  reciprocal  operation  of  these 
single  minds,  only  permissible  if  understood  in  a  certain  sense,  and 
this  would  require  a  closer  explanation  than  we  can  give.     At  any 

^  In  spite  of  this  express  request,  L.  Tobler,  in  the  Lit.  Bldtt.  fiir  germ,  und  rom. 
fhil.  l88l,  sf.  122,  remarks  upon  my  introduction  :  '  All  these  introductory  definitions 
of  conceptions  are  rather  proper  to  a  philosophical  review,  and  exercise  no  influence  upon 
the  further  course  of  the  exposition.'  And  Misteli,  u.s.  p.  400,  supports  him,  and  thinks 
he  might  have  added  'fortunately.'  I  must  confess  that  it  is  disappointing  to  me  that 
two  savants  who,  in  spite  of  their  special  knowledge,  profess  to  take  interest  in  general 
questions,  have  so  completely  failed  to  recognise  the  real  point  on  which  my  whole  work 
turns.  The  very  essence  of  it,  in  my  view,  is  to  trace  the  development  of  language  from 
the  reciprocal  effects  which  individuals  produce  on  each  other.  Thus  a  criticism  of  the 
views  of  Lazarus  and  Steinthal,  whose  fault  consists  precisely  in  their  inattention  to  this 
reciprocal  influence,  is  closely  bound  up  with  the  general  tendency  of  my  book.  Misteli 
especially  is  of  the  view  that  my  general  theoretical  positions  needed  no  attention  on  the 
1  art  of  the  philologist,  and  that  the  latter  would  find  sufficient  material  in  the  traditional 
categories  of  grammar.  He  thus  gives  his  approbation  to  the  old  dualism  of  philosophy 
.and  science,  which  it  is  cur  duty  at  the  present  day  most  strenuously  to  oppose. 


rate  it  is  not  the  case  that  the  ideas  pass  beyond  the  limits  of  the 
single  mind,  and  operate  upon  the  ideas  of  other  minds,  as  they 
operate  upon  each  other  within  the  limits  of  a  single  mind.  And 
just  as  little  can  we  speak  of  the  entire  groups  of  ideas  in 
individual  minds  acting  upon  each  other,  as  single  ideas  do  in  the 
mind  of  an  individual.  It  is  rather  an  axiom  of  fundamental 
significance  which  we  must  never  lose  from  sight,  that  all  purely 
psychical  reciprocal  operation  comes  to  its  fulfilment  in  the  individual  \ 
mind  alone.  All  intercourse  of  mind  with  mind  is  mer'cly  indirect, 
and  such  intercourse  depends  upon  purely  physical  conditions.  If 
we  therefore  apprehend  psychology  in  Herbert's  sense  as  the 
science  of  the  relation  borne  by  ideas  to  each  other,  there  can 
exist  only  an  individual  psychology,  to  which  no  'popular 
psychology,'  or  whatever  else  it  may  be  called,  can  properly  be 

We  find,  however,  in  the  exposition  of  individual  psychology,  a 
second  special  part  added  to  this' general  one,  which  treats  of  the 
history  of  the  development  of  the  more  complicated  groups  of 
ideas  which,  in  the  process  of  experience,  we  find  in  an  essentially 
similar  way  in  ourselves,  and  in  the  individuals  whom  we  have  to 
contemplate.  No  objection  can  be  taken  to  this,  so  long  as  we 
only  remain  conscious  of  the  fundamental  contrast  which  prevails 
between  the  two  parts.  The  second  is  no  longer  exact  science, 
but  history.  It  is  easy  to  see  that  these  more  complicated  groups 
owe  the  possibility  of  their  formation  to  the  fact  that  an  individual 
lives  in  society  with  a  number  of  other  individuals,  And  in  order 
to  penetrate  more  deeply  into  the  secret  of  their  origin,  we  must 
endeavour  to  picture  clearly  to  ourselves  the  different  stages  which 
they  have  successively  passed  through  in  individuals  that  have 
lived  before.  It  is  from  this  point  that  Lazarus  and  Stein  thai 
have  evidently  arrived  at  the  conception  of  popular  psychology. 


But  just  as  we  have  no  right  to  give  the  name  '  psychology ' 
to  a  historical  representation  which  exhibits  the  actual  course  of 
this  development,  so  we  have  none  to  apply  that  term  to  the 
science  of  principles,  which  sets  forth  the  general  conditions 
under  which  such  a  development  is  possible.  What  is  psychical 
in  this  development  comes  to  its  fulfilment  within  the  individual 
mind  according  to  the  general  laws  of  individual  psychology. 
But  everything  whereby  the  operation  of  one  individual  upon 
another  is  rendered  possible  belongs  to  another  domain  than  that 
of  psychology. 

In  speaking  of  the  different  stages  in  the  development  of  the 
psychical   groups,    I    have   employed    the   ordinary   metaphorical 
method  of  expression.     In  accordance  with  our  previous  explana- 
tions, we  cannot  suppose  that  an  image-formation,  as  it  has  taken 
shape  in  the  individual  mind,  can  actually  be  the  real  foundation 
whence  the  formations  in  other  minds  take  their  rise.     The  fact  is 
rather  that  each  mind  must  start  from  the  beginning.     We  can 
place    nothing    already   formed    in   it,   but   everything   must    be 
created   anew   in    each    mind;  the   primitive   ideas   by  means  of 
physiological    excitations,   the   groups    of  ideas    by   the    relations 
which   the   primitive   ideas   have   assumed    towards    one    another 
within  the  mind  itself.     In  order  to  evoke  in  one  mind  a  train  of 
ideas  corresponding  to  one   which  has   taken   its  rise  in    another 
mind,  the  latter  can  do  nothing  but  create  by  the  action    of  the 
motor  nerves  a  physical  product,  which  in  its  turn  calls  forth  the 
corresponding  ideas,  correspondingly  associated  in  the  mind  of  the 
other  individual  by  exciting  his  sensory  nerves.      The  most  im- 
jportant  of  the  physical   products  which  serve   this  purpose  are 
precisely  the  sounds  of  language.     Besides  these,  there  are  the 
i  tones  of  other  kinds,  facial  expressions,  gestures,  pictures,  etc. 

The  means  by  which  these  physical  products  are  qualified  to 


serve  as  a  medium  for  transmitting  ideas  to  another  individual  is 
either  an  inner  and  direct  relationship  to  the  ideas  in  question  (as 
for  instance,  a  cry  of  pain,  a  gesture  of  passion),  or  a  connexion 
depending  on  an  association  of  ideas,  in  which  process  the  idea 
standing  in  direct  relation  to  the  physical  instrument  forms  the 
connecting  link  between  this  and  the  idea  imparted ;  this  is  the 
case  with  language. 

Now,  the  matter  of  ideas,  which  is  the  point  in  question,  can 
never  be  created  in  the  mind  by  this  kind  of  communication.  It 
must,  on  the  contrary,  be  already  existent  in  the  mind,  through 
the  agency  of  physiological  excitations.  The  effect  of  communica- 
tion can  be  no  other  than  this,  that  certain  masses  of  ideas  repos- 
ing in  the  mind  are  awakened  thereby,  and  raised  to  the  level  of 
consciousness,  by  which  process  under  certain  circumstances  new 
connexions  between  them  are  created  or  old  ones  cemented. 

The  matter  of  ideas  then  as  such  is  incommunicable.  All  that 
we  imagine  that  we  know  about  the  ideas  of  another  individual 
depends  exclusively  upon  conclusions  drawn  from  our  own.  We 
assume  in  forming  these  concliisions  that  the  mind  of  another  indi- 
vidual stands  in  the  same  relationship  to  the  exterior  world  as  our 
own,  that  the  same  physical  impressions  produce  on  it  similar  ideas 
to  those  in  our  own,  and  that  these  ideas  connect  themselves  in  a 
similar  way.  A  certain  degree  of  correspondence  in  mental  and 
bodily  organisation,  in  surrounding  nature,  and  in  the  circum- 
stances of  Hfe,  is  accordingly  the  condition  precedent  for  the 
possibility  of  an  understanding  between  different  individuals. 
The  greater  the  correspondence,  the  easier  the  understanding. 
Conversely,  every  divergence  in  this  relation  must  promote,  nay, 
must  actually  entail,  either  a  failure  to  understand,  or  an  imperfect 

The    power    of    understanding   is   carried   furthest    by    those 


physical  means  which  stand  in  direct  relationship  to  the  ideas 
communicated  ;  for  it  proceeds  often  from  the  general  points  of 
correspondence  in  human  nature.  On  the  other  hand,  where  the 
relation  is  an  indirect  one,  it  is  presupposed  that  in  the  different 
minds  the  same  association  is  formed,  and  this  presupposes  a  cor- 
respondence in  experience.  Accordingly  we  must  presuppose  as 
an  axiom,  that  all  commnnication  among  mankind  began  with  the 
former  kind,  and  that  it  only  passed  over  to  the  second  when  this 
was  attained.  At  the  same  time,  it  must  be  insisted  on  that 
the  resources  of  the  former  kind  are  indisputably  limited,  while 
in  the  case  of  the  second,  a  wide  scope  for  action  presents  itself, 
seeing  that  when  association  is  voluntary  countless  combinations 
are  possible. 
Transforma-         If  wc  now  ask  on  what  the  fact  depends  that  the  individual,  in 

tion  of 

indirect  into  spitc  of  the  fact  that  it  is  compelled  to  create  for  itself  its  own 

direct  associ- 
ation, range  of  ideas,  still  receives  by  means  of  society  a  defined  direc- 
tion for  its  mental  development,  and  a  far  wider  extension  than  it 
could  attain  to  in  isolation,  we  must  fix  as  the  essential  point  on 
!',  the  conversion  of  indirect  into  direct  associations.  This  conversion 
fulfils  itself  within  the  individual  mind  ;  but  the  result  attained  is 
transferred  to  other  minds,  of  course  by  means  of  physical  mechanism 
in  the  way  described.  The  gain  then  consists  in  this,  that  in  these 
other  minds  the  groups  of  ideas  do  not  require  to  make  the  same 
detour  in  order  to  come  together,  as  was  the  case  in  the  first  mind. 
This  is,  therefore,  especially  a  gain  in  cases  where  the  connexions, 
which  serve  as  the  immediate  links,  are  of  minor  importance  com- 
pared with  the  connexion  finally  resulting.  It  is  owing  to  this 
economy  of  labour  and  time  to  which  one  individual  has  assisted 
another,  that  the  latter  is  in  his  turn  in  a  position  to  employ  the 
result  of  this  economy  to  set  up  a  further  connexion,  for  which  the 
first  individual  had  no  time  at  his  disposal. 


With  the  transference  of  a  connexion  converted  from  an  in- 
direct one  into  a  direct,  it  does  not  follow  that  the  movement  of 
ideas  which  has  originally  conduced  to  the  origin  of  this  connexion 
is  transferred  as  well.  If,  for  instance,  the  Pythagorean  maxim  (the 
theorem  of  Euclid  i.  47)  is  transmitted  to  anyone,  he  does  not  there- 
by learn  from  this  transmission  the  way  in  which  it  was  originally 
discovered.  He  may  then  either  simply  content  himself  with  the 
direct  connexion  imparted  to  him,  or  he  may,  by  means  of  his  own 
creative  combination,  prove  the  theorem  by  the  agency  of  other 
mathematical  theorems  already  known  to  him,  in  which  process  he 
has  a  much  easier  task  than  the  original  discoverer.  If,  however, 
as  "is  here  the  case,  various  means  of  arriving  at  the  result  are 
possible,  it  does  not  necessarily  follow  that  he  must  light  upon  the 
same  as  the  original  discoverer. 

It  appears,  therefore,  that  in  the  course  of  this  important  process, 
seeing  that  the  starting  and  final  points  of  a  series  of  ideas  are  trans- 
mitted in  direct  connexion,  the  connecting  links  which  originally 
aided  in  setting  up  this  connexion  must,  often  to  a  large  extent,  be 
lost  for  the  following  generation.  This  is  in  many  cases  a  salutary 
riddance  of  useless  ballast,  whereby  the  space  necessary  for  a  higher 
development  is  secured.  But  the  difficulty  of  arriving  at  a  knowledge 
of  the  genesis  of  the  ideas  is,  of  course,  very  much  increased  thereby. 

After  these  remarks,  which  hold  good  for  the  entire  develop- 
ment of  culture  (the  special  application  of  which  to  the  history  of 
language  has  to  engage  our  attention  further  on),  we  will  now 
endeavour  to  specify  the  most  important  peculiarities  whereby 
the  science  of  language  differs  from  the  other  sciences  of  culture. 
As  we  take  close  cognisance  of  the  factors  with  which  it  has  to 
reckon  we  shall  at  once  be  in  a  position  to  justify  our  assertion 
that  the  science  of  language,  of  all  historical  sciences,  is  able  to 
give  us  the  surest  and  most  exact  results. 


Peculiar  Evcry  sciciice  depending  on  experience  attains  greater  accuracy 

istics of  the    in  proportion  as  it  succeeds  in  observing,  in  the  phenomena  with 

science  of 

language,  which  it  has  to  deal,  the  operation  of  the  single  factors  when  isolated. 
It  is  precisely  in  this  that  the  difference  between  the  scientific  and 
the  popular  method  of  looking  at  things  lies.  Isolation  is,  of 
course,  more  difficult  to  effect,  the  more  intricate  the  complications 
are  in  which  the  phenomena,  as  such,  are  presented.  In  this 
respect  we  are  singularly  favoured  in  respect  of  language'.  This 
certainly  does  not  hold  true  if  we  embrace  in  our  view  the  whole 
material  contents  deposited  in  language.  For  we,  no  doubt,  find 
there  that  all  which  has  in  any  way  touched  the  human  mind,  the 
organisation  of  the  body,  its  environing  nature,  the  entire  range  of 
culture,  all  the  experiences  and  circumstances  of  life,  have  left 
behind  effects  on  language,  and  that  language,  therefore,  when 
looked  at  from  this  point  of  view,  is  dependent  upon  the  most 
manifold  factors,  indeed  on  every  kind  of  factor  imaginable.  But 
the  peculiar  task  of  the  science  of  language  is  not  to  observe  these 
material  contents.  It  can  only  offer  its  contribution  to  this  end  in 
conjunction  with  all  the  other  sciences  of  culture.  Its  task,  strictly 
speaking,  is  to  observe  the  relations  which  this  subject-matter  of 
idea  assumes  towards  definite  groups  of  sound.  Thus  we  find  that 
of  the  four  categories  of  social  influence  given  above  (p.  xxxi.), 
only  the  two  first  come  into  consideration.  We  need  also,  as  of 
main  importance,  only  two  exact  sciences  as  the  basis  of  the 
science  of  language,  viz.  psychology  and  physiology,  and  of  the 
latter  certain  portions  only.  What  we  commonly  understand  by 
the  physiology  of  sound  or  phonetics  certainly  does  not  comprise 
all  the  physiological  processes  which  belong  to  linguistic  activit}-, 
not,  for  instance,  the  excitement  of  the  motor  nerves  whereby  the 
organs  of  language  are  set  in  motion.  Further,  acoustics  con- 
sidered as  a  branch  of  physics,  and  of  physiology,  will  come  under 


its  purview.  Acoustic  processes,  however,  are  not  directly 
influenced  by  psychical  processes :  they  are  so  influenced  only 
indirectly  by  the  processes  connected  with  the  physiology  of 
sound.  They  are  defined  by  these  to  this  extent :  that  after  the 
impulse  once  given,  their  course,  generally  speaking,  receives  no 
further  impulses  to  deviation,  at  all  events  none  such  as  are  of 
importance  for  the  essence  of  language.  Under  these  circum- 
stances any  deeper  research  into  these  processes  is,  at  any  rate, 
not  so  indispensable  as  the  knowledge  of  the  movements  of  the 
organs  of  speech.  I  do  not  mean  to  assert  by  this  that  there 
may  not  be  many  conclusions  to  be  drawn  from  acoustics  as  well. 

The  relative  simplicity  of  linguistic  processes  comes  out  plainly 
if  we  compare  with  them,  say,  those  of  economic  science.  In  the 
latter  we  have  to  deal  with  the  reciprocal  operation  of  the  entirety 
of  physical  and  psychical  factors  with  which  mankind  enters  into 
any  relation  whatever.  The  most  earnest  endeavours  will  never 
succeed  in  expounding  with  absolute  accuracy  the  part  played  by 
each  single  one  of  these  factors  in  the  process. 

Another  point  of  great  importance  is  the  following.  Every 
linguistic  creation  is  always  the  work  of  one  single  individual  only. 
Several  no  doubt  may  create  similar  products,  but  neither  the  act 
of  creation  nor  the  product  is  affected  by  that.  It  never  happens 
that  several  individuals  create  anything  by  working  together  with 
united  forces  and  divided  functions.  This  is  quite  different  from 
what  we  see  in  economic  or  pohtical  sciences.  In  the  develop- 
ment of  economics  and  politics  it  grows  ever  more  difficult  to 
observe  closely  the  different  relations,  the  more  that  the  union  of 
forces  and  the  distribution  of  duties  proceeds ;  and  thus  the  very 
simplest  relations  in  these  departments  are  at  once  less  evident 
than  the  linguistic  ones.  No  doubt,  so  far  as  a  linguistic  creation 
is  transferred  to  another  individual  and  transformed  by  him,  and 


as  this  process  goes  on  repeating  itself  ever  anew,  a  division  of 
labour  and  a  union  of  labour  is  apparent  here  ;  and  indeed  with- 
out such,  as  we  have  seen,  no  culture  is  conceivable.  And  where 
in  our  tradition  a  number  of  intermediate  stages  are  wanting, 
there  the  student  of  language  is  also  compelled  to  resolve  per- 
plexed complications  arising  not  so  much  from  the  co-operation  as 
from  the  successive  labours  of  different  individuals. 

It  is  further  of  great  importance,  from  this  point  of  view  also, 
to  remark  that  linguistic  formations  are  created  without  pre- 
conceived intention,  at  all  events  without  any  intention  of 
establishing  anything  lasting,  and  without  any  consciousness  on 
the  part  of  an  individual  of  his  creative  activity.  In  this  respect, 
the  formation  of  language  is  distinguished  especially  from  all 
artistic  production.  The  involuntary  character  which  we  here 
attribute  to  linguistic  creations  is  certainly  not  so  generally 
recognised,  and  still  needs  proving  in  detail.  We  must,  however, 
while  considering  this  characteristic,  draw  a  distinction  between 
the  natural  development  of  language  and  the  artificial  which 
is  brought  about  by  means  of  a  conscious  directing  interference. 
Such  voluntary  efforts  are  almost  exclusively  directed  towards  the 
foundation  of  a  general  language  on  an  area  split  up  into  dialects. 
In  what  follows,  we  must  in  the  first  instance  put  such  efforts 
entirely  out  of  consideration,  in  order  to  acquaint  ourselves  with 
the  simple  course  of  natural  development,  and  then  and  not  till 
then  we  must  deal  with  their  operative  power  under  a  special 
head.  This  course  of  procedure  is  not  merely  legitimate  but 
necessary.  We  should  otherwise  be  acting  like  a  zoologist  or 
botanist  who,  in  his  endeavours  to  explain  the  origin  of  the  animal 
and  vegetable  world  of  the  present  day,  should  in  every  case 
proceed  on  the  assumption  of  artificial  breeding  and  improvement , 
This  comparison   is   indeed   in  the   highest   degree    appropriate. 


Just  as  the  cattle-breeder  or  the  gardener  can  never  create  any- 
thing absolutely  at  his  own  will  from  nothing ;  as  these  are  con- 
fined in  all  their  experiments  to  an  alteration  of  natural  growth 
possible  only  within  certain  definite  limits  ;  just  so  does  an  artificial 
language  rise  only  on  the  foundation  of  a  natural  one.  Just  as  no 
artificial  grafting  or  breeding  can  neutralise  the  operation  of  the 
factors  which  determine  the  natural  development,  so  no  intentional 
regulation  can  produce  this  effect  in  the  department  of  language. 
These  factors,  interfere  as  we  may,  work  constantly  and  con- 
sistently, and  everything  which  is  formed  artificially  and  adopted 
into  language  is  subject  to  the  play  of  their  forces. 

It  would  now  be  our  task  to  show  how  far  the  involuntary  nature 
of  linguistic  processes  facilitates  our  examination  of  their  nature. 
The   first   conclusion  again  to  be  drawn  is,  that  these  must  be 
relatively  simple.     In  the  case  of  each  change,  a  short  step  only 
can  be  taken.      How,  indeed,  could  it  be  otherwise,  seeing  that 
each   change   is   secured  without   any  previous   calculation,  and 
commonly  speaking  without  any  suspicion  on  the  part   of  the 
speaker  that  he  is  producing  something  not  produced  before  ?     No 
doubt  we  are  then  called  upon  to  trace  the  evidence  whereby  these 
processes  make  themselves  felt  as  closely  as  possible,  step  by  step. 
It  follows,  however,  also  from  the  simplicity  of  linguistic  processes 
that  there  is  no  room  for  individual  peculiarities  to  make  themselves 
prominent  therein.    The  most  simple  psychical  processes  are  similar 
in  the  case  of  all  individuals,  their  peculiarities  depend  only  upon 
varieties  in  the  combinations  of  these  simple  processes.     The  great  j 
resemblance  of  all  linguistic  processes  in  the  most  different  individuals 
is  the  most  essential  foundation  for  an  exact  scientific  knowledge  of 
these  processes. 

It  is  thus  then  that  the  process  of  learning  language  falls  into 
an  early  period  of  development,  in  which,  generally  speaking,  in 


all  the  psychical  processes  there  is  very  little  voluntary  effort  and 
consciousness,  and  very  little  individuality  displays  itself.  And 
the  case  is  much  the  same  with  the  period  in  the  development  of 
the  human  race  which  originally  created  language. 

Were  not  language  so  completely  reared  on  the  basis  of  the 
common  properties  of  human  nature,  it  would  not  be  the  fitting 
instrument  for  general  communication  that  it  is.  Conversely,  the 
fact  that  it  is  so  entails  the  necessary  consequence  that  it  rejects 
everything  of  a  purely  individual  character  which  seeks  in  any 
way  to  force  itself  upon  it,  and  that  it  accepts  and  retains  nothing 
but  what  is  sanctioned  by  the  agreement  of  a  number  of  individuals 
in  connexion  with  each  other. 

Our  position  that  the  involuntary  nature  of  the  processes 
favours  the  attainment  of  an  exact  scientific  knowledge  is  easily 
confirmed  from  the  history  of  the  other  branches  of  culture.  'The 
development  of  social  relations,  of  law,  of  religion,  of  poetry,  and 
generally  speaking  of  the  other  arts,  exhibits  the  greater  uni- 
formity, and  makes  a  stronger  impression  of  natural  necessity,  in 
proportion  as  the  stage  of  development  concerned  is  the  more 
primitive.  While  in  these  departments  voluntary  design  and 
individualism  have  become  increasingly  conspicuous,  language  in 
this  respect  has  remained  far  nearer  to  the  original  state  of  things. 
And  this  circumstance  is  one  more  proof  that  language  is  the 
original  basis  of  all  higher  mental  development  in  the  individual 
as  in  the  entire  race. 
Scientific  [    '    I  have  briefly  to  justify  my  choice  of  the  title  '  Principles  of 

treatment  1       ,  ,  . 

ofianguag4  the  htstovy  of  Language.      It  has   been  objected    that   there   is 

only  possible  . 

byahistori-  another  view  01  language  possible  besides  the  historical.^     I  must 

cal  method.  ,.  ,  .  -itti  •  i     • 

contradict  this.  What  is  explained  as  an  unhistorical  and  still 
scientific  observation  of  language  is  at  bottom  nothing  but  one 

^  Cf.  Misteli,  u.s.,  p.  382  sqq. 

INTROD  UCl  ION.  xlvii 

incompletely  historical,  through   defects   partly   of   the  observer,\ 
partly  of  the  material  to  be  observed.     As  soon  as  ever  we  pass 
beyond  the  mere  statements  of  single  facts  and  attempt  to  grasp  the 
connexion  as  a   whole,  and  to   comprehend   the  phenomena,   we 
come  upon  historical  ground  at  once,  though  it  may  be  we  are  not 
aware  of  the  fact.     No  doubt  a  scientific  treatment  of  language 
is  possible,  not  only  in  cases  where  different  stages  of  develop- 
ment of  the  same  language  are  before  us,  but  also  where  the 
materials  at  our  disposal  occur  side  by  side.     The  most  favourable 
case  for  our  purpose  is,  when  several  related  languages  or  dialects 
are  known  to  us.     In  that  case  it  is  the  task  of  science  not  merely 
to    determine    what    reciprocally    corresponds    in    the    different 
languages  or  dialects,  but  as  far  as  possible  to  reconstruct  the  ' 
fundamental  forms  and  meanings  which  have  not  come  down  to 
us   from   those   which   have.      But   in   this   process   comparative 
immediately  passes  into  historical  observation.     But  also  in  cases 
where  only  one  definite  stage  of  development  of  a  single  dialect  is 
before  us,  scientific  observation  is  a  possibility  up  to  a  certain 
point.     How  ?  it  may  be  asked.      If  we  compare,  for  example,  the 
different  significations  of  a  word  with  each  other,  we  attempt  to 
establish  which  of  these  is  the  fundamental  one,  or  to  what  funda- 
mental signification,  now  obsolete,  they  point.    If,  however,  we  define 
a  fundamental  signification  from  which  the  others  are  derived,  we  lay 
down  a  historical  fact.    Or  we  compare  the  related  forms  together, 
and  deduce  them  from  a  common  fundamental  form.     In  this  case 
again,  we  lay  down  a  historical  fact.     Indeed,  we  cannot  even  assert 
that  related  forms  are  derived  from  a  common  basis  without  becom- 
ing historical.    Or  we  lay  it  down  that  there  is  an  interchange  of  sounds 
(lautwechsel)  between  certain  related  forms  and  words.    If  we  would 
'  explain  this  we  are  necessarily  drawn  to  the  conclusion  that  such 
interchange  is  the  effect  of  a  phonetic  development  {lautwandel),  in 


other  words,  of  a  historical  process.  If  we  attempt  to  characterise 
the  so-called  inner  form  of  language  in  the  sense  in  which  it  is 
employed  by  Humboldt  and  Steinthal,  we  can  only  do  this  by 
going  back  to  the  origin  of  the  forms  of  expression  employed,  and 
to  their  fundamental  meaning.  And  so  I  cannot  conceive  how  any 
one  can  reflect  with  any  advantage  on  a  language  without  tracing 
to  some  extent  the  way  in  which  it  has  historically  developed.  The 
only  elem.ent  which  might  still  claim  exemption  from  historical 
observation  would  be  general  reflexions  upon  the  individual  em- 
ployment of  language,  and  about  the  relation  of  the  individual 
speaker  to  the  general  usage  of  language.  However,  the  following 
pages  will  prove  that  precisely  these  reflexions  are  to  be  closely 
connected  with  the  observation  of  historical  development. 




T  is  of  main  importance  for  the  historian  that  he  should  clearly  Subject  of 

the  Science 

and  precisely  appreciate  the  extent  and  natiire  of  the  subject  "f  Language 
he  has  undertaken  to  investigate.     This  remark  seems  a  truism, 
and  yet  the  Science  of  Language  is  only  now  beginning  to  realise 
its  truth,  and  to  remedy  the  neglect  of  many  past  years. 

2.  Historical  Grammar  took  its  rise  from  the  older  Descriptive 
Grammar,  and  retains  even  now  much  from  its  predecessor.  It  has 
maintained,  at  least  in  the  system  of  its  classification,  absolutely 
the  old  form.  It  has  merely  laid  down  a  series  of  descriptive 
grammars  parallel  to  each  other.  In  fact  comparison,  and  not 
explanation  of  development,  is  regarded  as  in  the  first  in- 
stance the  proper  characteristic  of  the  new  Science.  Inde'ed 
Comparative  Grammar,  concerning  itself  as  it  does  with  the  re- 
ciprocal relations  of  cognate  families  of  speech  whose  common 
source  is  lost  to  us,  is  actually  opposed  formally  to  Historical 
Grammar,  which  traces  from  the  starting-point  given  by  tradition 
all  further  development.  And  even  now  many  philologists  and 
scholars  hardly  think  ot  both  of  these  as  merely  a  single  science, 
with  the  same  task  and  the  same  method,  only  that  the  relation 
between  the  'given  material  and  the  combining  intelligence  takes 
different  forms.     But  the  same  kind  of  comparison  has  been  applied 



in  the  department  of  Historical  Grammar  in  the  narrower  sense ; 
descriptive  grammars  of  different  periods  have  been  tacked  to- 
gether. Practical  utility  has  dictated  this  method  of  procedure, 
which  is  necessary  for  systematic  exposition  ;  and  this  utility  will 
always,  to  a  certain  point,  assert  its  claims.  But  it  cannot  be 
denied  that  the  entire  conception  of  the  development  of  language 
is  directly  influenced  by  this  method  of  exposition. 

3.  Descriptive  Grammar  has  to  register  the  grammatical  forms 
J  and  grammatical  conditions  in  use  at  a  given  date  within  a  certain 

community  speaking  a  common  language ;  to  take  note,  in  fact, 
of  all  that  can  be  used  by  any  individual  without  his  being  mis- 
'  understood  and  without  his  utterances  seeming  to  him  unusual.    Its 
\j  contents    consist   not   in    facts,  but   merely   in   abstractions   from 
observed  facts.     If  we  make  such  abstractions  at  different  times 
;,  within  the  same  linguistic  community,  we  shall  find  the  results 
different.     It  is  through  comparison  that  we  obtain  the  certainty 
,  { that  revolutions  in  the  language  have  occurred ;  we  discover  too, 
•  perhaps,  a  certain   regularity  in  the  reciprocal  relations  of  such 
:  revolutions ;  but  this  method  sheds  absolutely  no  light  on  the  true 
mature  of  these.     The  connexion  of  cause  and  effect  is  hidden  as 
long  as  we  calculate  by  means  of  these  abstractions  only,  as  if 
one  had  actually  taken  its  rise  from  the  other.     For  there  is  no 
,  such  thing  as  a  connexion  of  cause  between  abstractions ;  cause 
and  effect  exist  only  between  real  objects  and  facts.     As  long  as 
we  are  content  with  descriptive  grammar  in  the  case  of  abstrac- 
tions, we  are  far  indeed  removed  from  a  scientific  apprehension  of 
the  life  of  language. 

4.  The  true  object  of  philological  study  is  rather  the  entire 
sum  of  the  products  of  the  linguistic  activity  of  the  entire  sum  .of 
individuals  in  their  reciprocal  relations.  All  the  groups  of  sound 
ever  spoken,  heard,  or  represented,  with  the  associated  ideas,  whose 


symbols  they  were ;  all  the  numerous  relations  entered  into  by 
the  elements  of  speech  in  the  minds  of  individuals — all  these 
belong  to  the  history  of  language,  and  must,  properly  speaking,  all 
be  thoroughly  apprehended  to  render  a  full  apprehension  of  its 
development  a  possibility.  It  need  hardly  be  said  that  to  solve 
such  a  problem  is  an  impossibility.  It  is  good  to  state  the  ideal 
aim  of  a  science  in  all  its  bareness  of  outline.  By  so  doing  we 
become  aware  of  the  gulf  between  our  powers  and  our  possibilities. 
We  learn  that  we  must  in  many  questions  content  ourselves  with 
an  avowal  of  ignorance  ;  and  that  super-acuteness,  which  imagines 
that  it  can  explain  the  most  complicated  historical  developments 
by  a  few  ingenious  apergus,  is  humbled.  But  it  is  for  us  an  inevit- 
able necessity  to  get  a  general  idea  of  the  play  of  the  forces  at 
work  in  this  huge  complex — forces  which  we  must  always  keep 
before  our  eyes,  if  we  would  endeavour  to  arrange  correctly  the 
few  scanty  fragments  which  we  can  really  claim  to  possess  out 
of  it. 

i,.   A   part — and   a   part   only — of   these   operating   forces    is  organisms 

J  i^  c  J  1  o  Idea-Groups 

visible  to  us.     Speaking  and  hearing  are  not  the  only  processes  ^f=j^^^=i°[.^ 
bound  up  with  the  history  of  language.     Nor,  again,  does  this 
history  stop  at  the  ideas  awakened  by  language  and  the  language- 
pictures  which  pass  through  consciousness  in  unspoken  thought. 
No ;  probably  the  greatest  progress  made  by  modern  psychology 
consists  in   the  recognition  of  the  fact  that  numerous  psychical 
processes  fulfil  themselves  unconsciously,  and  that  everything  which/' 
has  ever  been  in  consciousness  remains  as  an  efficacious  factor  in; 
unconsciousness.      The  recognition  of  this  fact  is  of  the  greatest  | 
importance  for  the  Science  of  Language  as  well,  and  has  been  used 
by  Steinthal  on  a  large  scale  for  the  purpose  of  that  science.     All 
the  utterances  of  linguistic  activity  flow  from  this  dark  chamber 
of  the  unconscious  in  the  mind.     All  the  linguistic  material  at 


the  disposal  of, any  individual  is  there  to  be  found;  in  fact,  we 
might  say,  even  more  than  he  can  dispose  of  under  ordinary 
circumstances.  It  is  to  be  found  as  a  highly-complicated  psychical 
formation,  consisting  of  many  groups  of  ideas,  confused  and  inter- 
penetrating with  each  other.  It  is  no  business  of  ours  here  to 
examine  the  general  laws  under  which  these  groups  are  found. 
We  may  refer  our  readers  for  this  to  Steinthal's  Introduction  to 
Psychology  and  the  Science  of  Language.  We  are  merely  concerned 
to  set  forth  their  contents  and  their  activity. 

6.  These  groups  are  the  product  of  all  that  has  entered  into 
our  consciousness  whether  through  listening  to  the  utterances  of 
another,  through  our  own  speaking,  or  through  thought  clothed  in 
the  forms  of  language.     Through  these  groups  what  has  once  been 
in  consciousness  can   again,  under  favourable   circumstances,  be 
recalled   to  consciousness,   and   also  what  has   been   once  under- 
stood or  uttered  can  again  be  either  understood  or  uttered.     We 
must,  according  to  the  general  rule  already  laid  down,  accept  as 
truth  that  no  idea  which  has  once  been  introduced  by  linguistic 
activity  into  consciousness  disappears  and  leaves  no  traces,  though 
these  traces  may  often  be  so  weak,  that  certain  special  circum- 
stances, which  may  be  never  occur  at  all,  are  needed  to  impart  to 
this  idea  the  faculty  of  conscious  acceptance.     Ideas  are  introduced 
in   groups   into   consciousness,   and   hence   as   groups   remain    in 
unconsciousness.     Ideas  awakened  by  sequences  of  sound  associate 
themselves  into  a  series;   and  ideas  called  up  by  movements  ot 
the   organs   of  language   associate  themselves   into    a    sequence. 
Series  of  sounds  associate  themselves  with  series  of  movements 
of  the   organs   of  speech.      The   ideas  for  which   they  serve   as 
symbols   associate   themselves  with   both  alike;    not   merely  the 
ideas   of  meanings   of  words,   but   likewise   those   of  syntactical 


7.  And  not  merely  do  single  words,  but  larger  sequences  of 
sound — nay,  entire  sentences,  associate  themselves  immediately 
with  the  constituent  parts  of  the  thought  which  they  clothe. 
These  groups,  furnished  at  least  originally  by  the  exterior  world, 
now  proceed  to  organise  themselves  in  the  mind  of  each  individual 
into  far  fuller  and  more  complicated  combinations,  which  come  to 
their  fulfilment  for  the  most  part  unconsciously,  and  then  proceed 
to  operate  unconsciously — which  in  by  far  the  greater  number  of 
cases  never  arrive  at  clear  consciousness,  and  which  still  effectually 
operate.  Thus  it  is  that  the  different  uses,  in  which  we  have  come 
to  be  acquainted  with  a  word  or  a  phrase,  associate  themselves  with 
each  other.  Thus,  too,  the  different  cases  of  the  same  noun,  the 
different  tenses,  moods,  and  persons  of  the  same  verbs,  the  different 
derivatives  from  the  same  root,  associate  themselves,  thanks  to  the 
relationship  between  their  sounds  and  their  meaning ;  further,  all 
words  of  similar  functions — e.g.  all  substantives,  all  adjectives,  all 
verbs  ;  further,  derivatives  formed  from  different  roots  with  the  same 
suffixes  ;  further,  forms  of  different  words  with  similar  functions — 
e.g.  all  plurals,  all  genitives,  all  passives,  all  perfects,  all  conjunc- 
tives, all  first  persons  ;  further,  words  similarly  inflected — e.g.  in 
NHG.  all  weak  words  as  contrasted  with  all  strong  words,  all 
masculines  which  form  their  plural  by  means  of  umlaut  as  con- 
trasted with  those  that  form  it  otherwise,  also  words  only  partially 
inflected,  may  group  themselves  in  contrast  to  such  as  depart  more 
violently  from  the  regular  use  ;  and  further,  clauses  alike  in  form 
or  in  function  similarly  associate  themselves.  And  thus  there  are 
besides  these  a  quantity  of  associations  connected  by  manifold 
links — associations  of  greater  or  less  importance  for  the  life  of 
language.  These  associations  may  one  and  all  rise  and  operate 
without  consciousness,  and  they  must  by  no  means  be  confounded 
with   grammatical  categories,  which  are  the  result  of  conscious 


abstraction,    though    they    not    unfrequently     cover    the     same 

8.  It  is  not  less  significant  than  natural  that  this  organism  of 
groups  of  ideas  is  in  a  state  of  perpetual  change  in  each  individual. 
In  the  first  place,  each  impetus  which  receives  no  accession  of 
strength  by  repetition  of  its  impact,  or  by  a  fresh  introduction 
into  consciousness,  loses  force,  and  this  perpetually.  In  the 
next  place,  every  activity  of  language,  hearing,  or  thought  adds 
something  new.  Even  in  the  process  of  the  exact  repetition  of  an 
earlier  activity  certain  impulses  at  least — of  the  organism  already 
existing — are  strengthened.  And  however  rich  be  the  record  of 
an  individual's  past  activity,  still  the  occasion  for  something  new 
to  arise  is  perpetually  occurring,  at  least  in  the  form  of  new  varia- 
tions of  old  elements  (irrespective  of  the  fact  that  something  hither- 
to unusual  may  make  its  appearance  in  language).  In  the  third 
place,  the  relations  of  association  within  the  organism  are  ever  be- 
ing displaced,  by  the  weakening  as  by  the  strengthening  of  the  old 
elements,  and  finally  by  the  addition  of  new  ones.  Thus,  if  the 
organism  of  the  adult,  when  contrasted  with  the  stage  of  develop- 
ment of  earliest  boyhood,  exhibits  a  comparative  degree  of  stability, 
it  still  remains  exposed  to  many  oscillations. 

9.  Another  point  equally  obvious  and  equally  important  is  the 
following :  The  organism  of  the  group  of  ideas  which  depend 
on  language  takes  a  peculiar  development  in  the  case  of  each 
individual,  and  thus  in  each  takes  a  peculiar  form  ;  should  such 
organism  be  compounded  of  different  elements  drawn  from  identical 
sources,  still  these  elements  will  be  introduced  to  the  mind  in 
different  sequence,  differently  grouped,  with  different  intensity,  in 
some  cases  more,  in  others  less  frequently;  and  the  reciprocal 
relation  of  their  force,  and  thus  the  manner  of  their  grouping,  will 
result  differently,  and  this  even  though  we  take  no  account  of  the 



difference  in  the  capacities  common  to  all,  and  those  peculiar  to 
the  individual. 

10.  The  mere  consideration  of  the  boundless  variability,  and  of 
the  peculiar  conformation  of  each  single  organism,  is  sufficient 
to  make  us  realise  the  necessity  of  a  boundless  variability  of 
language  as  a  whole,  and  of  a  growth  of  dialectic  varieties  not 
less  vast. 

1 1.  The  psychical  organisms  here  described  are  the  true  media  Organisms 
of  historical  development.  What  has  been  actually  spoken  has  no  ^f]j^^7 
development.  It  is  misleading  to  say  that  one  word  has  arisen  ^itdo"' 
from  another  word  spoken  at  some  previous  time.  The  word 
as  a  product  of  our  physical  organs — disappears,  and  leaves  no 
trace  when  once  the  organs  it  has  set  in  motion  have  returned 
to  their  state  of  repose.  And  in  the  same  way  the  physical 
impression  on  the  hearer  passes  away.  If  I  repeat  the  same 
movement  of  the  organs  of  speech  which  I  have  once  made'  a 
second,  a  third,  or  a  fourth  time,  there  is  no  physical  connexion  of 
cause  between  these  four  similar  movements;  but  they  are  con- 
nected by  the  psychical  organism,  and  by  this  alone.  In  this  alone 
remains  the  trace  of  the  past,  whereby  further  procedure  of  the 
kind  can  be  caused :  in  this  alone  lie  the  conditions  of  historical 

12.  The  physical  element  of  language  has  exclusively  the 
function  of  communicating  the  effects  of  the  single  psychical 
organisms  to  each  other  ;  but  it  is  for  this  purpose  indispensable, 
because,  as  has  already  been  insisted  on  in  the  Introduction,  there 
is  no  such  thing  as  a  direct  influence  of  mind  upon  mind.  In 
itself  but  a  transitory  phenomenon,  it  still,  by  its  co-operation 
with  the  psychical  organisms,  enables  these  to  leave  effects  even 
after  it  is  past  and  gone.  As  its  effect  ceases  with  the  death  of 
the  individual,  the  development  of  a  language  would  naturally  be 


confined  to  the  duration  of  a  single  generation,  were  it  not  that 
new  individuals  gradually  supervene  in  whom  new  organisms  of 
language  are  produced  under  the  influence  of  those  already  in 
I      existence.    The  vehicles  of  the  historical  development  of  a  language  ' 
i      always  disappear,  and  are  replaced  by  new  ones  after  a  compara- 
1     tively  brief  space  of  time.     This  is  a  simple  truth,  but  not  the  less 
.    important,  and  not  the  less  often  overlooked. 
Requisites  13.  Let  US  HOW  considcr — the  nature  of  the  object  being  what 

of'stltes'of  it  is — the  task  of  the  historian.  He  cannot  avoid  describing  states 
angvage.  ^^  language,  seeing  that  he  is  concerned  with  large  groups,  of 
[  simultaneously  co-existing  elements.  If,  however,  this  de- 
\scription  is  ever  to  become  a  really  useful  basis  for  historical 
■contemplation,  it  must  attach  itself  to  the  real  objects — i.e., 
the  psychical  organisms  just  described.  It  must  give  as  true  a 
picture  of  these  as  possible  ;  it  must  not  merely  give  an  exhaustive 
list  of  the  elements  of  which  they  are  composed,  but  must  also  realise 
their  relation  to  each  other,  their  relative  strength,  the  numerous 
connexions  they  have  formed  witli  each  other,  the  degree  of  the 
closeness  and  durability  of  such  connexions ;  it  must,  to  express 
ourselves  in  more  popular  fashion,  show  us  how  the  instinct  of 
-language  is  setting.  To  describe  the  condition  of  a  language 
adequately,  it  would  be,  strictly  speaking,  necessary  to  observe 
with  full  accuracy  every  individual  belonging  to  one  community  of 
speech,  to  note  the  character  of  such  groups  of  his  ideas  as 
depend  upon  language,  and  to  compare  with  each  other  the  results 
gained  in  each  individual  case.  As  a  matter  of  fact,  we  have  to 
content  ourselves  with  something  far  less  perfect  than  this— some- 
thing falling  short  of  our  ideal  more  or  less— always,  however, 

14.  We  are  often  confined  to  the  observation  of  some  few  indi- 
viduals—sometimes even  to  that  of  a  single  one  ;  and  we  are  able 


only  partially  to  become  acquainted  with  the  organism  of  lan- 
guage of  these  few  or  of  this  single  one.  By  comparing  indi- 
vidual organisms  of  language,  we  obtain  a  certain  average,  by 
which  the  strictly  normal  part  of  language — namely,  its  usage — is 
defined.  This  average  is,  of  course,  more  infallible  the  more  indi- 
viduals studied,  and  the  more  fully  each  can  be  observed.  The 
less  perfect  the  observation,  the  more  doubts  remain  as  to  what 
is  to  be  set  down  to  individual  peculiarity  and  what  is  common 
to  all  or  most.  In  any  case,  usage — to  the  exposition  of  which 
the  efforts  of  the  grammarian  are  almost  exclusively  directed 
— governs  the  language  of  the  individual  to  a  certain  degree 
only;  but  side  by  side  with  this  there  is  always  much  which 
is  not  so  defined — nay,  which  actually  is  in  direct  opposition  to 

15.  Even  in  the  most  favourable  cases,  the  observation  of  an 
organism  of  language  is  beset  with  the  greatest  difficulties.  In  no 
case  can  it  be  observed  directly.  It  is  an  unconscious  something 
reposing  in  the  mind.  It  is  cognisable  by  its  effects  only — the 
single  acts  of  linguistic  activity.  A  picture  of  the  groups  of  ideas 
lying  in  unconsciousness  can  only  be  obtained  by  the  aid  of 
many  inferences. 

16.  Of  the  physical  phenomena  of  linguistic  activity,  the  acoustic 
are  the  most  readily  accessible  to  observation.  Still,  no  doubt  the 
results  of  our  aural  apprehension  are  for  the  most  part  hard  to 
gauge  and  to  define,  and  it  is  even  harder  to  give  an  idea  of  them 
except  again  by  means  of  direct  communication  to  the  ear.  The 
movements  of  the  organs  of  speech  are  less  immediately  accessible 
to  observation,  but  are  capable  of  a  more  exact  definition  and 
description.  No  proof  is  needed  at  the  present  day  that  no  exact 
representation  of  the  sounds  of  a  language  exists  except  that  which 
teaches  us  what  movements  of  the  organs  are  necessary  to  produce 


them.  The  ideal  of  such  a  manner  of  representation  can  only 
approximately  be  realised  when  we  are  able  to  make  observa- 
tions on  living  individuals.  When  we  unfortunately  cannot  do  this, 
ive  must  always  keep  this  ideal  before  our  eyes,  and  endeavour 
to  realise  it  as  nearly  as  we  can  by  restoring  the  living  sound 
to  the  best  of  our  powers  from  the  substitute  of  writing.  This 
endeavour,  however,  can  only  result  successfully  for  one  who 
has  had  some  training  in  phonology,  atnd  has  already  made 
observations  on  living  languages  which  he  can  transfer  to  dead 
languages  ;  and  who  has,  further,  conceived  a  correct  idea  of  the 
relation  between  writing  and  language.  Thus  here  we  have 
already  a  wide  field  open  for  power  of  combination  ;  here  already 
familiarity  with  the  conditions  of  the  life  of  the  object  is  an  indis- 
pensable demand. 

17.  The  psychical  side  of  linguistic  activity  is,  like  everything 
psychical,  to  be  directly  learnt  by  self-observation  only.  All 
observation  of  other  individuals  supplies  us  in  the  first  instance 
with  physical  facts  only.  We  can  only  succeed  by  the  aid  of 
analogical  inferences  in  referring  these  to  psychical  facts  on  the 
basis  of  observations  made  on  our  own  mind.  Thus,  self-observa- 
tion ever  applied  anew,  and  scrupulous  analysis  of  our  individual 
instinct  of  language,  are  indispensable  for  the  training  of  the 
philologist.  Then  analogical  inferences  are  naturally  most  easy 
in  the  case  of  objects  which  approach  most  nearly  to  the  actual 
ego.  Thus  the  true  nature  of  linguistic  activity  is  more  readily 
apprehended  in  the  case  of  the  mother  -  tongue  than  in  any 
other.  Further,  we  are  naturally  in  a  better  position  when  we 
can  employ  observations  on  the  living  individual  than  when 
we  are  referred  to  the  casual  remnants  of  the  past.  Only  in  the 
case  of  the  living  individual  can  we  obtain  results  free  frgm 
every   suspicion   of  adulteration ;    only  in   this   case   can   we  at 


pleasure  verify  our  observations   and   make   methodical   experi- 

1 8.  Thus,  to  describe  a  linguistic  condition,  which  may  give 
a  thoroughly  trustworthy  basis  for  historical  investigation,^  is  no 
easy  task,  and  may,  under  certain  circumstances,  be  a  very  difficult 
one.  To  fulfil  this  task  adequately,  we  must  have  clear  views 
as  to  the  conditions  of  the  life  of  language,  and  this  is  the  more 
necessary  in  proportion  as  the  material  at  our  disposal  is  less  full 
and  less  trustworthy,  and  as  the  resemblance  existing  between  the 
language  to  be  described  and  the  mother-tongue  of  the  describer 
is  less.  We  cannot,  therefore,  be  surprised  if  the  ordinary 
grammars  fall  far  short  of  our  claims.  Our  traditional  grammatical 
categories  are  mosj:  unsatisfactory  as  a  means  for  enabling  us  to 
realise  the  way  in  which  the  elements  of  language  are  grouped. 
Our  grammatical  system  is  far  from  being  finely  enough  differ- 
entiated to  meet  the  requirements  of  the  psychological  groups. 
We  shall  hereafter  have  frequent  occasion  to  show  in  detail  the 
inadequacy  of  this  system.  It  tempts  us,  besides,  to  transfer,  when  ^ 
the  circumstances  are  not  applicable,  what  is  abstracted  from  one  j 
language  to  another.  Even  if  we  confine  ourselves  to  the  circle  | 
of  the  Indo-European  languages,  the  employment  of  the  same  , 
grammatical  framework  causes  numerous  discrepancies.  The 
picture  of  a  particular  condition  of  language  is  often  blurred 
when  the  beholder  happens  to  be  acquainted  with  a  language 
nearly  related  to  the  object  of  his  consideration,  or  with  an  older 
or  more  recent  stage  of  its  development.  The  greatest  care  is,  in 
this  case,  necessary  to  prevent  the  intrusion  of  any  foreign  material. 
Historical  Philology  has  fallen  markedly  short  in  this  very  par- 

i  What  we  have  claimed  as  indispensable  for  Scientific  Grammar  is  no  less  indispens- 
able for  Practical  Grammar,  subject  always  to  the  necessary  restrictions  imposed  by  the 
capacity  of  the  learner;  for  the  aim  of  practical  grammar  is  nothing  but  to  familiarise 
the  learner  with  the  instinct  of  a  foreign  language. 


ticular ;  it  has  transferred  wholesale  its  philological  abstractions, 
drawn  from  researches  into  an  older  stage  of  language,  into  a  more 
recent  one.  Thus,  for  instance,  the  signification  of  a  word  is  made 
to  depend  upon  its  etymology  even  though  all  consciousness  of 
this  etymology  has  long  since  vanished,  and  an  independent 
development  of  the  signification  has  set  in.  Thus,  again  in  acci- 
dence as  it  is  taught,  the  grammatical  divisions  applicable  to  the 
most  primitive  period  have  been  maintained  through  all  later  times  ; 
a  proceeding  thanks  to  which  the  after  effects  of  the  original 
conditions  are  doubtless  brought  out,  but  not  the  new  psychical 
organisation  of  the  groups. 

19.  When  descriptions  of  different  epochs  in  the  life  of  a 
language  are  drawn  up  conformably  to  our  requirements,  a  con- 
dition is  fulfilled  which  renders  it  possible,  from  the  comparison  of 
the  various  descriptions,  to  form  an  idea  of  the  processes  which 
have  taken  place  in  the  past.  This  will  naturally  enough  be  the 
more  successful  the  nearer  the  circumstances  which  enter  into 
comparison.  But  even  the  slightest  variation  in  usage  is  com- 
monly found  to  be  the  result  of  the  co-operation  of  a  series  of 
single  processes  which,  in  great  part,  or  indeed  entirely,  escape  our 
Change  of  |  20.  Suppose  that  we  now  endeavour  to  answer  the  question, 
Jj|"^5.=jjj°'"  I  What  is  the  real  cause  of  the  change  of  usage  in  language? 
Speech?  °  Chaugcs  produced  by  the  conscious  intention  of  single  individuals 
are  not  absolutely  excluded  \cf.  the  history  of  the  words  gas, 
etc.].  Grammarians  have  endeavoured  to  reduce  written  languages 
to  regularity.  The  terminology  of  sciences,  arts,  and  trades  is 
settled  and  enriched  by  teachers,  investigators,  and  discoverers. 
Under  a  despotism,  it  may  happen  that  the  caprice  of  the  monarch 
has  in  a  single  point  prevailed.  But  it  has  not  in  most  cases 
aimed  at  an  absolutely  new  creation,  but  only  at  the  settlement 


of  some  point  on  which  usage  had  not  yet  decided;   and  the 
significance  of  such  capricious  decisions  is  as  nothing  compared    , 
with  the  slow,  involuntary  and  unconscious  changes  to  which  the    | 
usage  of  language  is  perpetually  exposed.     The  real  reason  for    1 
the  variability  of  usage  is  to  be  sought  only    in    regular    linguistic  \ 
activity.     From  this  all  voluntary  influence  on  usage  is  excluded. 
No  other  purpose  operates  in  this,  save  that  which  is  directed  to  the 
immediate  need  of  the  moment — the  intention  of  rendering  one's 
wishes  and  thoughts  intelligible  to  others.     For  the  rest,  purpose    ' 
plays  in  the  development  of  language  no  other  part  than  that 
assigned  to  it  by  Darwin  in  the  development  of  organic  nature, — 
the  greater  or  lesser  fitness  of  the  forms  which  arise  is  decisive 
for  their  survival  or  disappearance. 

21.  If  usage  is  displaced  by  linguistic  activity  without  any 
one's  voluntary  interference,  this,  of  course,  depends  on  the  fact  --^ 
that  usage  does  not  perfectly  dominate  linguistic  activity,  but  ' 
always  leaves  a  certain  measure  of  individual  freedom.  The 
part  played  by  this  individual  freedom  reacts  on  the  psychical 
organism  of  the  speaker,  though  it  acts  as  well  on  the  organism 
of  the  hearer.  The  result  of  the  sum  of  a  series  of  such  displace- 
ments in  the  single  organisms,  assuming  that  these  displace- 
ments tend  in  one  direction,  is  a  displacement  of  usage.  A 
new  usage  forms  from  what  was  in  its  origin  individual  only, 
and  this,  in  certain  cases,  succeeds  in  expelling  the  other.  Side 
by  side  with  this  we  find  a  quantity  of  similar  displacements 
in  the  single  organisms  which  have  no  such  thorough-going 
success,   simply   because    they   do    not    mutually    support    each 


22.  The  result  of  this  is  that  all  the  doctrine  of  the  principles  of 
the  history  of  language  centres  round  the  question.  What  is  the  \. 
relation  between  linguistic  usage  and  individual  linguistic  activity?  j 


How  is  the  latter  defined  by  the  former,  and  how  does  this  con- 
versely react  on  it  ?  ^ 
Language  23.  It  must,  then,  be  our  object  to  bring  under  the  head  of  com- 

develoijs  by 

Gradations,  mon  Categories  the  different  changes  of  usage  which  occur  in  the 
development  of  language,  and  to  examine  each  single  category 
according  to  its  growth  and  the  different  stages  of  its  development. 
To  arrive  at  this  goal  we  must  confine  ourselves  to  the  cases  in 
which  these  stages  of  development  display  themselves  to  us  with 
the  greatest  possible  fulness  and  precision.  It  thus  happens  that, 
generally  speaking,  modern  periods  of  language  afford  us  the 
most  useful  materials.  But  even  the  smallest  variation  in  usage 
is  already  a  complicated  process,  which  we  do  not  comprehend 
without  taking  count  of  individual  modifications  of  usage.  Where 
ordinary  grammar  makes  it  its  business  to  divide  or  to  draw  lines 
of  demarcation,  we  must  exert  ourselves  to  detect  every  possible 
intermediate  step  and  connecting  process. 

24.  A  graduated  development  is  possible  in  every  department 
of  the  life  of  language.  This  gentle  graduation  manifests  itself  on 
one  side  in  the  modifications  undergone  by  individual  languages ; 
on  the  other,  in  the  relations  borne  by  individual  languages  to  each 
other.  The  object  of  this  work  is  to  manifest  this  in  detail.  It  is 
well  to  point  out  at  once  in  this  place,  that  the  single  individual 
may  possibly  have,  with  reference  to  the  linguistic  material  of  the 
linguistic  community  of  which  he  is  a  member,  a  relation  partly 

'  It  is  hence  clear  that  philology  and  linguistic  science  must  not  define  their 
several  territories  in  such  a  way  that  the  one  might  properly  concern  itself  with  merely 
the  finished  results  of  the  other.  The  only  tenable  distinction  between  linguistic  science 
and  philological  handling  of  language  would  be  this,  that  the  former  deals  with  the 
general  and  pennanent  facts  of  speech,  the  latter  with  their  individual  application.  Yet 
the  work  of  an  author  cannot  be  properly  estimated  without  a  just  view  of  the  relation  of 
his  productions  to  the  whole  complex  of  his  linguistic  perceptions,  and  of  the  relation  of 
this  complex  to  general  usage.  And  conversely,  the  modification  of  usage  cannot  be 
understood  without  a  study  of  individual  speech.  For  the  rest  I  refer  to  Brugmann,  Zum 
heutigen  Stand  der  Sprachwissenschaft,  p.  i  sq. 



active,  partly  only  passive — i.e.  he  does  not  himself  employ  all  that 
he  hears  and  understands.     Besides,  we  must  notice  that,  of  the   i 
linguistic  material  employed  by  many  individuals  conjointly,  one  j 
prefers  one  part,  another  prefers  another.     It  is  on  this  that  the 
variation  mainly  depends,  even  between  the  individual  languages/ 
which  stand  nearest  to  each  other,  and  the  possibility  of  a  gradual 
displacement  of  usage. 

25.  The  changes  in  language  fulfil  themselves  in  the  individual, 
partly  through  his  spontaneous  activity,  by  means  of  speaking     \ 
and   thinking    in    the    forms   of    language,   and   partly   through 
the   influence  which   each   individual   receives    from   others.      A  \ 
change  in  linguistic  usage  can  hardly  be  brought  about  without  j 
the  co-operation  of  both.     The  individual  always  remains  exposed 
to  lasting  influences  from  others,  even  when  he  has  thoroughly 
absorbed  what  is  the  common  usage  of  language.     But  the  main 
period  for  the  exercise  of  such  influence  is  the  time  of  the  first 
acquisition — of  the  learning  of  language.    This  is  in  principle  not  to 
be  separated  from  any  other  kind  of  influence ;  and  it,  generally 
speaking,  follows  in  the  same  way ;   and  it  cannot  be  said  that 
there  is  in  the  life  of  any  individual  a  particular  point  after  which 
we  could  reasonably  maintain  that  the  power  of  acquiring  language 
is  excluded.     But  the  difference  in  different  stages  is,  after  all, 
very  great.     It  is  quite  clear  that  the  processes  in  the  course  of 
learning  language  are  of  the  highest  importance  for  the  explanation   i 
of  the  variations  in  the  usages  of  language — that  they  afford  the 
weightiest  reason  for  these  variations.     If  we  compare  two  epochs 
divided  by  a  long  space  of  time  from  each  other,  and  say  that  the 
language  has  changed  in  such  and  such  points,  we  are  not  describing 
the  true  state  of  matters :  the  case  stands  rather  thus— the  language 
has  undergone  a  new  creation ;  and  the  new  creation  is  not  quite 
identical  with  the  former,  which  has  now  perished  and  disappeared. 


ckKificatioa       26.  In  the  classification  of  the  changes  in  the  usage  of  language  we 

Changes.  ,    _  .  ,  ,  , 

may  proceed  from  various  pomts  of  view.  There  is  one  important 
difference  of  general  application  which  should  be  noted.  The 
processes  may  be  either  positive  or  negative — i.e.  they  consist  either 
I  in  the  creation  of  what  is  new,  or  in  the  disappearance  of  what  is 
old  ;  or,  in  the  third  place,  they  consist  in  a  replacement — i.e.  the 
disappearance  of  the  old  and  the  appearance  of  the  new  are 
due  to  the  same  act.  The  last  is  exclusively  the  case  in  sound- 
change.  The  semblance  of  this  displacement  shows  itself  in  other 
departments  as  well.  The  semblance  is  occasioned  by  the  fact 
that  the  intermediate  stages  are  disregarded,  an  appreciation  of 
which  would  show  that  in  truth  we  have  to  deal  with  a  succession 
af  positive  and  negative  processes.  The  negative  processes  always 
■est  on  the  fact  that  in  the  language  of  the  younger  generation 
something  has  not  been  created  afresh  which  was  in  existence  in 
;he  language  of  previous  ones  ;  thus,  to  speak  accurately,  it  is  not 
with  negative  processes,  but  with  the  non^^ccurrence  of  processes 
that  we  have  to  deal.  But  this  non-occurrence  must  be  con- 
ditioned by  the  fact  that  what  later  disappears  altogether  has 
already  become  a  rarity  in  the  case  of  the  older  generation: 
1  generation,  which  has  a  merely  passive  relation  to  it,  inter- 
venes between  one  with  an  active  relation  and  one  with  none 
it  all. 

2;.  On  the  other  hand,  the  changes  in  usage  might  be  classified 
vith  respect  to  whether  sounds  or  the  signification  were  affected. 
Thus  we  meet  at  once  with  processes  affecting  the  sounds  without 
he  signification  coming  into  consideration  at  all;  and  we  meet 
irith  processes  affecting  the  signification  without  the  sounds  being 
imilarly  affected— z>.  we  thus  obtain  the  two  categories  of  sound- 
h.ange,  and  of  change  in  signification.  Every  change  in  meaning 
iresupposes  that  the  group  of  ideas  which  has  reference  to  the 


distribution  of  sounds  is  felt  as  identical ;  and  in  the  same  way 
every  change  of  sound  presupposes  that  the  signification  has 
remained  unchanged.  This  does  not,  of  course,  exclude  the  pos- 
sibility of  change  occurring  in  the  sound  as  well  as  in  the  meaning. 
But  the  two  processes  do  not  stand  in  any  relation  of  cause  and 
effect  with  each  other ;  the  one  is  in  no  way  conditioned  by  the 
other,  nor  are  both  the  result  of  the  same  cause.  In  the  case  of 
other  changes  the  distribution  of  sounds  and  signification  together 
comes  into  consideration.  Under  this  head  we  may  at  once  class 
the  very  primitive  combination  of  sound  and  meaning,  which 
we  may  designate  as  'original  creation.'  It  is,  of  course,  with 
this  that  the  development  of  language  began,  and  no  other  pro- 
cesses are  possible  excepting  on  the  basis  of  what  this  original 
creation  has  produced.  Under  the  same  head,  however,  will 
come  different  processes  which  have  this  in  common,  that  the 
sound-elements  of  language  already  existing  enter  into  new  com- 
binations on  the  basis  of  the  signification  they  have  received. 
The  most  powerful  factor  in  this  process  is  analogy,  which  plays 
indeed  a  certain  part  in  the  department  of  pure  sound,  but  finds 
its  main  scope  where  signification  co-operates  with  it  as  well. 

28.  If  our  method  of  observation  be  correctly  carried  out,  it  will 
follow  that  its  general  results  will  be  applicable  to  all  languages 
and  to  all  stages  of  their  development ;  and,  indeed,  generally 
speaking,  to  the  first  beginnings  of  language.  The  question  as  to 
the  origin  of  language  can  only  be  answered  on  the  basis  of  the 
doctrine  of  principles.  There  are  no  other  means  of  answering  the 
question.  We  are  unable  to  give  a  historical  picture  of  the  origins 
of  language  on  the  basis  of  tradition.  The  only  question  that  we 
can  answer  is,  How  was  the  origin  of  language  possible?  This 
question  can  only  be  satisfactorily  answered  if  we  succeed  in 
deducing  the  origin  of  language  exclusively  from  the  activity  of 



those  factors  which  we  still  see  in  activity  in  the  further  development 
of  language.  Besides,  no  tenable  contrast  can  be  drawn  between 
original  creation  of  language  and  its  mere  further  development. 
As  soon  as  the  first  start  has  been  made,  we  have  language  and  its 
further  development.  There  exist  merely  graduated  differences 
between  the  first  origins  of  language  and  later  epochs. 
Grammar  2Q.  There  is  One  point  to  which  attention  must  be  drawn.     In 

^d  Logic.  ^ 

their  opposition  to  the  former  customary  method  of  dealing  with 
language,  in  which  all  grammatical  relations  were  simply  derived 
from  logical  relations,  some  have  gone  so  far  as  to  wish  to  exclude 
those  logical  relations  which  find  no  expression  in  grammatical 
form.  This  is  not  to  be  approved  of  For,  necessary  as  it  is  to 
mark  the  difference  between  logical  and  grammatical  categories, 
it  is  equally  necessary  on  the  other  side  to  define  the  relations  of 
either  to  the  other.  Grammar  and  logic  do  not  coincide,  because 
the  formation  and  application  of  language  does  not  proceed  on 
the  basis  of  strict  logical  inquiry,  but  by  the  natural  and  untrained 
movement  of  the  groups  of  ideas,  which  either  follows  or  not  the 
agency  of  laws  more  or  less  logical  according  to  the  natural  or 
acquired  capacity  of  each  individual.  But  the  linguistic  form  of 
the  expression  does  not  always  tally  with  the  true  movement  of 
the  groups  of  ideas  with  their  now  greater,  now  less,  logical  con- 
sistency. Besides  this,  psychplogical  and  grammatical  categories 
do  not  cover  the  same  ground.  It  follows  from  this  that  the 
philologist  must  keep  the  two  apart ;  but  it  does  not  follow  that 
in  analysing  human  utterances  he  is  at  liberty  to  disregard 
psychical  processes  which  fulfil  themselves  in  speaking  and  hearing, 
without,  however,  manifesting  themselves  in  linguistic  expression. 
30.  It  is  not  until  he  has  made  a  full  consideration  of  what  does 
not  indeed  actually  lie  in  the  elements  of  which  individual  utterances 
are  composed,  but  which  the  speaker  still  has  before  his  mind, 


and  which  is  understood  by  the  hearer,  that  the  philologist  can 
arrive  at  an  acquaintance  with  the  origin  and  transformations  of 
linguistic  forms  of  expression.  Whoever  considers  grammatical 
forms  as  merely  isolated,  without  marking  their  relation  to  indi- 
vidual mental  activity,  can  never  arrive  at  an  understanding  of  the 
development  of  language. 


Analogies      T  T  is'  established   past   all   doubt   by   Comparative   Philology 

from  Organic      ■ 


Nature.  _|^  ^j^^(.  several  different  languages  have  often  developed  out 
of  a  single  essentially  uniform  language,  and  that  these  again 
have  not  remained  uniform,  but  have  split  up  into  a  series  of 
dialects.  It  would  be  natural  to  expect  that  the  observation  of 
this  process  would,  more  than  any  other  possible  circumstance, 
force  on  our  notice  analogies  which  might  be  drawn  from  organic 
nature.  It  is  surprising  that  Darwinian  philologists  have  not 
specially  thrown  themselves  into  this  view.  The  parallel,  when  not 
pressed  beyond  fixed  limits,  is  indeed  justifiable,  and  instructive  as 
well.  If  we  would  carry  the  comparison  out,  we  must  compare  the 
language  of  the  individual — in  other  words,  the  entire  materials  of 
language  of  which  he  disposes — with  the  individual  animal  or  plant ; 
and  the  dialects,  languages,  families  of  language,  etc.,  with  the 
species,  genera,  classes,  etc.,  of  the  animal  and  vegetable  world. 

32.  There  is  another  important  point  in  which  it  is  of  moment 
to  recognise  the  absolute  justice  of  the  parallel.  The  great  revolu- 
tion through  which  zoology  has  passed  in  modern  times  depends  to 
a  great  extent  upon  the  recognition  of  the  fact  that  nothing  has  a 
real  existence  except  single  individuals — that  the  families,  genera, 
and  classes  are  nothing  but  comprehensions  and  divisions  formed 

by  human  understanding,  which  may  result  according  to  individual 



caprice  ;  that  divisions  between  species  and  those  between  indi- 
viduals differ  not  in  essence,  but  only  in  degree.  In  judging  of 
dialectic  differences  we  must  put  ourselves  on  a  similar  basis  :  we 
have,  strictly  speaking,  to  differentiate  as  many  languages  as  there } 
are  individuals.  If  we  comprehend  the  languages  of  a  definite 
number  of  individuals  in  one  group,  and  exclude  those  of  other 
individuals  as  contrasted  with  this  group,  we  abstract  in  this 
process  on  each  occasion  something  from  certain  differences  while 
we  set  value  upon  others.  Thus  some  room  is  always  left  for 
arbitrary  arrangement.  We  have  no  right  to  start  by  assuming 
that  individual  languages,  speaking  generally,  must  admit  of  being 
brought  under  a  classified  system.  We  must  be  prepared  to  find 
that  into  however  many  groups  we  may  divide  languages,  there 
will  always  remain  a  number  of  individuals  which  we  shall  be 
uncertain  to  ascribe  to  one  or  to  the  other  of  two  nearly  related 
groups.  And  the  same  dilemma  becomes  really  formidable  when 
we  try  to  combine  the  smaller  groups  into  larger,  and  to  mark 
,  these  sharply  off  from  each  other.  A  sharp  and  well-marked 
division  is  not  possible  until  the  community  of  intercourse  has 
been  broken  off  for  several  generations  in  succession. 

33.  If,  then,  we  speak  of  the  severing  of  an  originally  uniform 
language  into  different  dialects,  the  phrase  expresses  but  ill  the 
true  nature  of  the  process.  The  truth  is  that  at  any  given  moment 
within  any  given  community  there  are  as  many  dialects  spoken 
as  there  are  individual  speakers ;  and,  what  is  more,  dialects 
each  having  its  own  historical  development,  and  each  being  in  a 
state  of  perpetual  change.  Severance  into  dialects  means  really 
nothing  more  than  the  growth  of  individual  variations  beyond 
a  particular  limit. 

34.  Another  point  in  which  we  may  establish  a  parallel  is  this 
—the  development  of  an  individual  animal  depends  on  two  factors. 


On  the  one  side  it  is  conditioned  by  the  nature  of  its  parents, 
whereby  it  receives  a  definite  impulse  imparted  by  inheritance  ;  on 
the  other  side  we  have  to  set  the  chance  effects  of  climate,  food, 
way  of  hfe,  etc.,  to  which  each  individual  is  exposed  in  its  own 
existence.  One  of  these  entails  an  essential  resemblance  to  the 
parents ;  the  other  the  possibility  of  a  certain  departure  from  this 
within  definite  limits.  And  thus  the  language  of  each  individual 
shapes  itself  on  one  side  according  to  the  influences  of  the 
languages  of  the  several  companions  with  whom  he  holds  com- 
merce, which,  from  our  point  of  view,  we  may  regard  as  the 
progenitors  of  his  own ;  on  the  other  side,  according  to  peculi- 
arities wholly  independent  of  these,  and  the  special  motives 
supplied  by  his  spiritual  and  bodily  nature.  Here,  too,  we  find 
agreement  in  this  respect — that  the  first-named  factor  is  always  by 
far  the  more  powerful  of  the  two.  A  violent  change  in  the  type  is 
not  manifest  till  after  a  lapse  of  time,  and  is  only  produced  by  the 
fact  that  each  modification  of  the  nature  of  the  individual,  which 
varies  from-  the  original  drift  imparted  to  it,  aids  in  imparting  the 
drift  to  the  following  generation.  It  is  just  so  in  the  history  of 
language.  We  may  further  make  this  statement  about  language 
as  about  every  animal  organism  :  the  lower  the  grade  of  develop- 
ment, the  stronger  will  be  the  second  factor  in  comparison  with 
the  first. 

35-  On  the  other  hand,  we  must  not  overlook  the  great  differ- 
ences which  exist  between  linguistic  and  organic  generation.  In 
the  latter  the  direct  effect  of  the  parent  ceases  at  a  definite  point ; 
after  this  we  have  merely  the  tendency  imparted,  which  operates 
afterwards.  In  the  generation  of  the  language  of  an  individual, 
the  surrounding  languages  maintain  their  share  till  his  end,  though 
it  may  be  true  that  their  influences  are  most  powerful  in  the  earliest 
childhood  of  the  language  in  question,  and  grow  weaker  and  weaker 


the  more  this  grows  and  gains  strength.  The  generation  of  an 
animal  organism  is  due  to  an  individual  or  to  a  pair.  In  the 
generation  of  the  language  of  an  individual,  the  languages  of  a 
great  quantity  of  other  individuals  are  concerned  ;  in  fact,  of  all 
with  whom  he  has  in  the  course  of  his  life  come  into  linguistic 
contact,  though,  of  course,  in  different  degrees.  And,  what  makes 
the  matter  more  complicated  still  in  this  process  of  generation, 
it  may  happen  that  the  different  individual  languages  may  be 
active  and  passive  at  once  in  their  relations  to  each  other ;  the 
parents  may  be  the  children  of  their  own  children.  Finally,  we 
must  remark  that,  even  if  we  speak  of  the  language  of  an  in- 
dividual, we  have  to  deal  not  with  a  concrete  being,  but  with  an 
abstraction,  except  when  we  understand  by  the  expression  the 
entirety  of  the  groups  of  ideas  combined  in  the  mind,  with  their 
manifold  and  complicated  relations,  all  depending  upon  linguistic 

36.  It  is  by  intercourse,  and  nothing  else,  that  the  language  of  \ 
the  individual  is  generated.  The  family  origin  claims  our  notice 
only  as  far  as  it  influences  the  physical  and  mental  capacity  of  the 
single  individual.  This,  as  has  been  remarked,  is  no  doubt  a 
factor  in  the  form  taken  by  language,  but  a  very  secondary  one 
as  compared  with  the  iniluences  of  direct  communication. 

^7.  If  we  start  from  the  undeniable  truth  that  each  individual  statement  of 

01  •  '  the  Problem. 

has  his  or  her  own  language,  and  that  each  such  language  has  its 
own  history,  the  problem  is  not  so  much  how  from  a  language 
essentially  uniform  different  dialects  arise — the  rise  of  variations 
seems  a  mere  matter  of  course.  The  problem  which  challenges 
solution  is  this :  How  comes  it  that  while  the  language  of  each 
individual  has  its  own  special  history,  this  degree  of  agreement —  j 
be  it  greater  or  less — maintains  itself  within  this  miscellaneously  ,' 
constituted  group  of  individuals  ? 


Linguistic  38.  The  increase  of  dialectic  varieties  depends,  of  course,  on 

Change  and 

Uon°™''*'  ^^^  cliange  in  linguistic  usage.  The  more  violent  the  change,  the 
greater  the  opportunity  afforded  for  the  growth  of  variations.  But 
the  degree  of  this  growth  is  not  conditioned  merely  by  the  violence 
of  the  change,  for  no  change  necessarily  entails  a  lasting  differen- 
tiation ;  and  the  circumstances  which  operate  towards  the  main- 
tenance of  the  agreement,  or  towards  the  speedy  restoration  thereof, 
may  exist  in  very  different  degrees. 

39.  The  life  of  a  language  cannot  be  conceived  of  apart  from 
continuous  differentiation.  If  it  were  conceivable  that  in  one 
linguistic  centre  every  individual  language  were  absolutely  iden- 
tical, in  the  very  next  moment  the  impulse  would  be  given  for  the 
formation  of  varieties  among  them.  The  spontaneous  develop- 
ment of  each  individual  must  strike  out  a  particular  path,  according 
to  peculiarities  in  the  natural  bent  and  experiences  of  the  being 
who  serves  as  its  vehicle,  and  the  circumstances  of  his  life.  The 
!  influence  exercised  by  or  upon  the  single  individual  never  extends 
to  more  than  a  fraction  of  the  whole,  and  within  this  fraction  we 
find  important  graduated .  variations.  Correspondingly,  no  doubt, 
/  there  is  a  continuous  tendency  to  cancel  the  differentiations  which 
have  appeared — a  tendency  operating  thus :  departures  from  a 
former  usage  are  either  rejected  or  are  transferred  to  individuals 
who  have  never  developed  them  spontaneously.  This  process 
of  cancelling,  however,  is  never  quite  perfect.  It  only  becomes 
approximately  so  within  a  circle  in  which  a  continuous  inter- 
change of  communication  takes  place.  The  less  active  the  inter- 
course the  more  differences  arise,  and  are  maintained.  The  possi- 
bility of  differentiation  goes  still  further  if  all  direct  communication 
has  ceased,  and  there  is  only  an  indirect  connexion  by  means  of 
•  connecting  links. 

States  of  40.  If  the   activity  of  intercourse  were  perfectly  uniform  in 



degree  at  all  points  in  one  linguistic  centre,  we  should  have  nothing 
but  individual  languages,  of  which  those  which  stood  in  close  con- 
nexion with  each  other  would  differ  in  each  case  from  each  other 
but  slightly,  while  between  the  furthest  points  of  contrast  strongly- 
marked  differences  might  have  arisen.  It  would  then  be  impossible 
to  comprise  a  number  of  individual  languages  in  a  single  group 
which  we  might  set  over  as  a  whole,  perfect  in  itself,  against  any 
other  such  comprehension.  Each  individual  language  would 
necessarily  be  apprehended  as  a  connecting  link  between  several 
others.  But  such  a  state  of  matters  has  nowhere  existed,  and 
never  does  exist  in  fact.  It  would  be  conceivable  only  if  no 
natural  boundaries  existed,  no  political  and  religious  unions — if, 
let  us  say,  the  whole  people  lived  in  a  plain  without  any  large  river, 
in  isolated  houses,  at  approximately  identical  distances  from  each 
other,  without  any  central  place  of  assembly.  Even  under  these 
circumstances  the  process  of  grouping  into  family  languages  would 
take  place,  But  in  reality, we  find  either  a  collective  life  as  in 
towns  and  villages,  or  perhaps,  in  the  case  of  nomadic  tribes,  in 
hordes ;  or,  where  the  system  of  isolated  homesteads  prevails,  we 
find  at  least  smaller  or  greater  political  and  religious  unions  with 
places  of  assembly.  In  mountainous  countries  single  valleys  are 
more  or  less  completely  shut  off  from  each  other.  Islands  are 
divided  by  the  sea.  Even  where  no  such  barriers  exist,  unculti- 
vated stretches  of  land,  woods,  moors,  swamps,  etc.,  lie  between  the 
single  settlements.  Individual  languages,  therefore,  are  driven  to 
form  groups  according  to  the  natural  environing  circumstances 
which  determine  the  relations  between  them,  as  well  as  according 
to  their  political  and  religious  circumstances.  These  groups  are, 
comparatively  speaking,  uniform,  and  are  sharply  marked  off  from 
others  outside  of  them.  Thus,  such  groups  are  in  the  first  instance 
formed  by  the  smallest  unions— by  single  townships.     Where  the 


inhabitants  of  the  place  live  together,  each  single  individual  will 
stand  nearer  to  the  other  than  to  those  who  belong  to  another 
place.  It  is  thus  possible  for  a  real  border  to  form  here — a 
boundary-line  not  obscured  by  any  connecting  grades.  Under  no 
other  circumstances  can  variations,  at  once  plainly  marked  and 
enduring,  take  their  rise,  such  as  cannot  maintain  themselves, 
at  least  permanently,  between  inhabitants  of  the  same  place. 
As  long,  however,  as  neighbouring  places  keep  up  a  vigorous 
communication  with  each  other,  it  may  also  be  that  no  plainly 
marked  and  enduring  difference  arises  between  them ;  in  any 
case  the  differences  will  remain  comparatively  insignificant.  If 
we,  however,  endeavour  to  group  round  each  local  dialect  such 
local  dialects  as  are  in  lively  intercourse  with  it,  we  shall  find  as 
a  result  a  quantity  of  groups  which  reciprocally  intersect  each 
other.  It  is  possible  that  the  process  of  grouping  may  have  a 
slightly  different  result  for  each  single  place.  Places  may  be 
added  or  subtracted,  and  the  communication  may  be  to  some 
extent  modified  with  respect  to  those  which  remain. 
Individual  41-  Evcry  change  in  linguistic  usage  is  a  product,  on  the  one 

Md'socSi  side,  of  the  spontaneous  impulses  of  single  individuals,  and  on  the 
n  uence.  Qj-j^gj.  ^f  ^j^g  couditions  of  intercourse  above  described.  In  cases 
where  a  spontaneous  tendency  is  diffused  evenly  over  an  entire 
linguistic  area,  affecting  the  majority  of  the  speakers,  it  will  be  found 
to  affect  the  generality  in  a  comparatively  short  time.  It  may  be, 
however,  that  in  different  divisions  this  impulse  is  distributed  with 
different  strength.  Under  such  circumstances,  in  districts  lying  far 
from  each  other,  and  connected  by  no  communication,  the  cancelling, 
as  far  as  it  is  necessary,  must  conduce  to  different  results.  Between 
these  the  strife  will  continue  to  rage,  and  will  not  be  easily  settled, 
because  one  side  has  a  more  vigorous  influence  upon  one  part,  the 
other  side  on  the  other.     This  '  no  man's  land '  forms  a  boundary 



wall  through  which  the  influences  cannot  pass  from  one  side  to  the 
other,  or  only  when  so  weakened  as  to  be  practically  ineffective. 

42.  A  border-land  like  this  must  be  forthcoming,  if  the  continuity 
of  the  communication  through  the  whole  linguistic  area  were  uniform 
— if  no  bars  were  placed  to  free  communication  by  distance 
in  space,  by  natural  obstacles,  or  by  political  border-lines.  As 
the  reciprocal  influence  of  areas  divided  by  such  barriers  is  reduced 
to  a  small  proportion,  distinct  limits  may  also  form  for  dialectic 
peculiarities.  An  entire  cessation  of  intercourse  is  not  necessary 
for  the  purpose.  It  need  necessarily  be  only  so  weak  that  it 
remains  irieffectual  without  a  certain  degree  of  spontaneous  re- 
ciprocity. Thus  it  is,  too,  that  a  dialectic  frontier  which  has 
long  existed  may  be  gradually  again  removed  if  the  spontaneous 
reciprocity,  which  was  at  first  wanting,  manifests  itself  later,  or  if, 
again,  similar  circumstances  proceed  from  different  sides. 

43.  Each  linguistic  change,  and,  further,  the  origin  of  every  Mutual 
linguistic  peculiarity,  has  its  own  special  history.     The  limit  which  denceoT 
marks  the  prevalence  of  one  is  not  decisive  for  the  limit  of  the  entiation."' 
other.     Were  the  relative  activity  of  intercourse  alone  decisive,  no 
doubt  the   borders   of  the   different  dialectic    peculiarities  would 
necessarily  coincide  absolutely.     But  the  spontaneous  tendencies 

to  change  may  distribute  themselves  in  a  fashion  essentially  dif- 
ferent, and  the  result  of  the  reciprocal  power  of  influence  must 
accommodate  itself  to  this.  If,  for  instance,  a  linguistic  area 
divides  itself  in  respect  of  a  dialectical  difference  into  the  groups 
a  and  b,  it  may  happen,  and,  in  fact,  will  often  do  so,  that  a 
division  made  in  respect  of  another  peculiarity  coincides  with  it ; 
but  it  may  also  happen  that  a  part  of  a  unites  with  b,  or  vice 
versa  ;  or  even  a  part  of  a  and  b  may  conceivably  stand  in  contrast 
to  another  part  of  a  and  b. 

44.  If,   therefore,  we   draw   border-lines   for  all   the  dialectic 


"Ta G^n^^    varieties  which  may  occur  in  one  continuous  linguistic  area,  we  get 
logical  Tree   ^  ygj-y.  complicated  system  of  manifold  lines  crossing  each  other. 

inadequate.  J  r  j  o 

A  neat  partition  into  main  groups,  which  we  might  divide  again 
into  so  many  sub-groups,  is  not  possible.  The  simile  of  a 
genealogical  tree,  commonly  adopted  to  enable  learners  to  appre- 
hend the  facts,  is  always  inexact.  We  can  only  employ  this  by 
voluntarily  seizing  on  certain  differences  as  essential,  and  by 
overlooking  others.  If  the  prominent  characteristics  are  actually 
seized  upon,  we  cannot  perhaps  deny  that  a  genealogical  tree  may 
aid  us  to  realise  the  actual  circumstances,  only  we  must  beware 
of  encouraging  the  delusion  that  an  exact  representation  of  the 
facts  is  thereby  given. 

45.  The  difficulty  of  representing  the  facts  by  means  of  a  genea- 
logical tree  is  enhanced  if  we  endeavour,  by  its  means,  to  give  the 
chronology  of  each  development,  as  is  natural  for  a  genealogy 
to  do. 

46.  Since  communication  and  the  power  of  reciprocally  influ- 
encing each  other,  as  between  neighbouring  districts,  has  not  been 
abolished  by  the  appearance  of  certain  differences,  should  changes 
set  in  at  a  later  period,  the  development  may  still  be  a  common 
one.  Thus  changes  may  make  their  way  in  an  entire  linguistic 
area  after  it  has  been  already  strongly  differentiated,  or  they  may 
set  in  in  several  parts  already  characterised  by  peculiarities.  Thus, 
for  instance,  the  lengthening  of  the  short  root  vowels  {cf.  MHG. 
lesen,  geben,  reden,  etc.)  is,  in  the  case  of  the  Low  and  Middle 
German  dialects,  carried  out  in  an  essentially  uniform  manner, 
whilst  many  older  changes  have  attained  a  much  less  extent. 
We  must  keep  this  always  before  us  in  our  consideration  of  the 
older  linguistic  periods,  which  we  are  enabled  to  endeavour  to 
picture  to  ourselves  by  inferences  alone.  We  are  too  much 
accustomed  to  consider  all  such  changes  of  an  original  condition  of 



language  as  pervade  an  entire  area  as  older  than  such  as  are  con- 
fined to  single  portions  of  this  area :  and  from  this  point  of  view 
we  assume  something  like  a  common  European  period,  a  Slavo- 
Germanic,  a  Slavo-Lettic,  an  original  Teutonic,  an  East  and  West 
German  original  language.  Certainly  it  is  not  to  be  disputed  that, 
commonly  speaking,  the  wider  extent  of  a  linguistic  peculiarity 
justifies  the  assumption  of  its  higher  age,  but  nothing  more  than  a 
mere  assumption.  Further,  besides  the  cases  in  which  we  can 
positively  prove  it,  there  will  be  various  others  in  which  the  more 
widely  diffused  change  is  more  recent  than  that  which  is  confined 
to  a  more  limited  area. 

47.  It  likewise  does  not  always  follow  that  the  peculiarities  which 
seem  most  striking  are  necessarily  the  oldest.  The  fashion  now  in 
vogue,  of  dividing  German  into  the  three  main  heads  of  Upper, 
Middle,  and  Low  German,  depends  upon  the  conditions  of  sound- 
change.  This  change  probably  did  not  set  in  before  the  seventh 
century  A.D.,  and  continued  to  operate  till  the  ninth,  and  indeed  in 
certain  points  even  longer.  But  actually  before  this  date  striking 
differences  were  in  existence  which  are  thrown  into  obscurity  by 
the  present  classification.  For  instance,  under  the  head  of  Low 
German,  three  not  unessentially  different  groups  are  comprised — the 
Frisian,  the  Saxon,  and  a  part  of  the  Franconian  ;  the  Franconian 
is  divided  between  Low  and  Middle  German. 

48.  Further,  we  cannot  lay  it  down  as  a  principle  of  universal 
application,  that  the  groups  which  have  earliest  begun  to  differ- 
entiate themselves  as  against  each  other  must  therefore  be  most 
strongly  differentiated,  or,  conversely,  that  in  the  case  of  the  most! 
strongly  differentiated  groups  the  differentiation  must  have  begun; 
earliest.  The  degree  in  which  communication  is  maintained  may 
change.  The  geographical  position  of  the  groups  in  reference  to 
each  other  may  alter.     Even  apart  from  this,  spontaneous  agree- 


ment  may  cause  new  changes  to  make  their  way  past  older 
limits,  while  they  themselves  perhaps  find  a  limit  where  before 
none  existed.  Or  it  may  be  that  a  special  district,  whose  develop- 
ment has  been  essentially  identical  with  that  of  an  adjoining  one, 
while  differing  from  all  the  others,  is  affected  by  specially  violent 
changes,  while  the  district  which  hitherto  has  followed  the  same 
track  remains  with  the  rest  in  the  earlier  stage. 
Dialectical  49.  Sincc  the  levelling  effect  of  communication   forbids   the 


graduated.  Operation  of  too  violent  changes  between  districts  closely  situated 
which  enjoy  a  regular  communication,  each  small  group  shows 
an  intermediate  stage  between  the  groups  which  bound  it  on 
different  sides.  It  is  a  false  idea,  which  is  still  very  prevalent, 
that  intermediate  stages  owe  their  origin  to  a  secondary  contact 
between  two  dialects  hitherto  separated.  We  cannot,  of  course, 
maintain  that  such  has  never  been  the  case.  A  transitional  stage 
may  be  formed  by  a  group,  either  by  the  fact  that  it  represents  the 
actual  connecting  link  between  two  distinct  formations  already 
existing  in  neighbouring  groups,  or  that  it  represents  them  side 
by  side,  or  by  the  fact  that  it  has  certain  dialectic  peculiarities  in 
common  with  one  group  and  another  set  with  the  other.  When 
the  relations  of  dialects  stand  thus  with  respect  to  each  other, 
the  mutual  understanding  between  neighbouring  districts  need 
never  be  stayed,  because  the  divergences  are  too  trivial,  and 
because  people  accustom  themselves  to  these  too  easily ;  and 
there  may  thus  nevertheless  exist  differences  between  those  more 
remote  which  make  mutual  understanding  impossible. 

50.  This  relation  can  be  observed  in  the  most  widely  differing 
languages.  It  is  specially  obvious  in  German.  A  Swiss  finds  it 
impossible  to  understand  a  Holsteiner — nay,  even  a  Hessian  or 
a  Bavarian,  and  yet  he  is  indirectly  connected  with  these  by 
unchecked  streams  of  communication.     The  gradual  shading  of! 


of  the  German  dialects  on  a  large  scale  may  be  seen  to  great 
advantage  in  the  so-called  High  German  process  of  sound- 
shifting.^  The  same  process  of  gradual  shading  off  can  be  easily- 
observed  by  a  casual  examination  of  Firmenich,  Germaniens  volker- 
stimmen.  A  clearer  idea  still  of  the  wonderful  multiplicity  of 
this  shading-off  process  may  be  obtained  by  the  Atlas  of  Lan- 
guages prepared  by  G.  Wenker.  The  circumstances  are  much 
the  same  not  merely  within  the  single  Romance  languages,  but 
actually  within  the  entire  Romance  linguistic  territory.  The 
territories  of  the  separate  nations  are  to  be  defined  with  any 
accuracy  by  the  written  languages,  and  by  these  alone,  and  not  by 
the  dialects.  Thus,  for  instance,  the  North  Italian  dialects  have 
some  very  important  peculiarities  in  common  with  the  French ; 
and  are  nearer  the  neighbouring  dialects  of  France  than  to  the 
Italian  written  language  or  the  dialect  of  Tuscany.  The  Gascon 
dialect  again  in  many  respects  is  the  transition  stage  from  the 
Provengal  (South  French)  to  the  Spanish  ;  the  Sardinian  shows  the 
transition  step  from  the  Italian  to  the  Spanish,  etc. 

51.  This  sketch  of  the  development  of  languages  presupposes 
that  the  individuals  are  settled.  Each  change  of  an  individual — still 
more  so,  of  groups  of  individuals — produces  modifications  which  we 
have  to  treat  in  Chapter  XXII.  as  mixtures.  The  existence  of  a 
written  language  operates  equally  as  a  moderating  factor ;  of  which 
we  shall  have  to  speak  in  Chapter  XXIII. 

52.  The  case  may  also,  of  course,  present  itself  that  the  com- 1=?^^'^™°' 
munication  between  the  several  parts  of  a  linguistic  community  is 
completely  broken  by  strongly  marked  natural  or  political  limits, 

by  the  emigration  of  one  part,  by  the  interposition  of  a  foreign 

people,  etc.     From  this  moment  the  language  of  each  single  part 

develops  itself  likewise  independently,  and  violent  contrasts  arise 

1  Cf.  Braune,  Beitrdge,  i.  p.  I  sqq-,  and  Nbrrenberg,  ib.  ix.  p.  371  sqq. 


without  transition  stages  to  connect  them.  It  thus  happens  that 
several  independent  languages  arise  out  of  one,  and  this  process 
may  repeat  itself  several'  times. 

S3.  It  is  scarcely  conceivable  that  no  noteworthy  changes  should 
have  occurred  through  the  whole  linguistic  territory  down  to  the 
moment  when  such  a  division  of  a  single  speech  into  several  has 
taken  place.  It  is  inconceivable  that  a  language  should  exist 
ranging  over  a  fairly  wide  district,  and  having  a  fairly  long 
development  behind  it,  without  some  dialectic  variations.  We 
must  therefore  regard,  as  a  rule,  the  independent  languages  which 
have  developed  out  of  a  common  original  language  as  continua- 
tions of  the  dialects  of  the  original  language  ;  and  we  may  assume 
that  a  part  of  the  differences  prevailing  between  them  dates 
back  to  the  period  of  their  continuous  connexion.  The  same 
would  hold  true  of  this  part  as  holds  true,  generally  speaking, 
with  respect  to  dialectic  differences  in  an  unbroken  linguistic 
area.  It  might  therefore  happen,  if  we  designate  the  dialects 
which  have  developed  into  independent  languages  by  the  letters 
of  the  alphabet,  that  a  might  have  something  in  common  with 
b  in  contrast  to  c  and  d,  something  else  in  common  with  e  in  con- 
trast to  b  and  d,  and  again  something  else  with  d  in  contrast  to 
b  and  c,  etc. ;  and  these  agreements  might  rest  upon  a  real  causal 
connexion.  From  this  point  of  view  the  relations  of  the  Indo- 
European  families  of  language,  for  instance,  ought  to  be  regarded. 
But  in  single  cases  it  is  hard  to  decide  whether  reciprocal  influ- 
ence has  really  and  truly  contributed  to  the  agreement  in  the 
development.  The  impossibility  of  a  coincidence  even  in  the 
case  of  quite  independent  development  can  hardly  ever  be  proved. 

54.  The  separation,  further,  need  not  necessarily  tally  with 
ancient  dialectic  limits,  and  particularly  not  when  it  is  caused  by 
migration.     It  is  possible  for  a  portion  of  a  group  which  agrees 



in  the  most  essential  points  to  separate,  while  the  other  portion 
remains  in  connexion  with  the  other  groups  which  are  further 
removed  from  it.  It  is  possible  again  for  portions  of  different 
groups  to  detach  themselves  at  once.  For  instance,  Anglo-Saxon 
is  originally  closely  connected  with  Frisian, — indeed,  it  seems 
improbable  that  it  ever  existed  on  the  Continent  as  a  separate 
dialect ;  but  it  seems  to  have  owed  its  origin  to  the  time  when 
Frisian  hordes  broke  from  their  homes,  and  united  with  them- 
selves certain  elements  of  other  Teutonic  stocks.  But  Anglo- 
Saxon  then  received  its  own  special  development,  while  the  Frisian 
has  remained  connected  with  other  German  dialects.  There  is  a 
sharply-defined  limit  between  English  and  German,  while  no  such 
limit  exists  between  Frisian  and  Low  Saxon. 

55.  The  character  of  the  sounds  remains,  and   always   must  The  Essen- 

■       ■        r  •  1  1  ■     1  •  1  ■         -1  '''''  Mark  ol 

remain,  the  characteristic  factor  in   the  dialectic  distribution   of  a  Dialect  us 

.11  •        t         /Tti  r      1   •      .         1  .  1  Sounds. 

a  district  linguistically  united.  The  reason  of  this  is  that  in  their 
formation  everything  depends  upon  the  direct  influence  gained  by 
immediate  personal  intercourse.  Vocabulary  and  signification, 
the  formal  and  syntactical  parts  of  language,  may  be  transferred 
without  difficulty.  Whatever  has  here  arisen  that  is  new  may  \ 
wander  far  and  wide  without  any  essential  alteration,  supposing 
that  it  strikes  a  responsive  chord.  But  sound,  as  we  shall  see  in 
the  following  chapter,  is  never  exactly  handed  on  as  it  is  received. 
Where  a  wide  gulf  exists,  the  influencing  power  in  regard  to 
changes  of  sound  entirely  ceases.  Here  then  far  more  violent 
differences  develop  themselves  than  in  the  case  of  the  vocabulary, 
inflexions  and  syntax,  and  these  diiferences  pass  more  uniformly 
through  long  spaces  of  time  than  in  the  case  of  sounds.  On  the 
other  hand,  if  a  real  severance  of  language  has  set  in,  the  differences 
between  the  different  languages  may  make  themselves  felt  as 
characteristically  in  other  departments  as  in  that  of  sound. 



Technical    II       ^6.  The  Icast  characteristic  feature  in   language  is  the  voca- 

and  Poetic    I !  &       & 

Language,  jjjulary  and  its  application.  In  this  case,  more  than  in  any  other, 
We  find  elements  transferred  from  one  dialect  into  another,  just 
as  we  do.. from  one  language  into  another.  In  this  case  there 
are  more  individual  variations  than  in  any  other.  Nay,  differences 
may  actually  occur  here  which  have  nothing  to  do  with  dialectic 
differences,  and  which  even  cross  with  these  and  interpenetrate 
them.  In  each  higher  stage  of  culture,  technical  expressions  arise 
for  the  different  trades,  arts,  and  sciences,  which,  mainly  or  indeed 
exclusively  employed  by  one  particular  professional  class,  are 
hardly  understood,  or  not  understood  at  all,  by  others.  In  the 
case  of  the  formation  of  such  technical  languages,  similar  relations 
are  observed  as  in  the  case  of  the  rise  of  dialects.  Under  this 
head  will  come  also  the  difference  between  the  language  of  poetry 
and  that  of  prose,  which  likewise  extends  to  what  is  formal  and 
syntactical  in  language.  Peculiar  circumstances  in  the  case  of 
ancient  Greece  actually  led  to  a  purposely  artificial  employment 
of  differences  of  sounds.  There  may,  however,  be  such  a  thing 
as  a  poetical  language  (and  this  is  the  most  common  case),  which 
in  the  most  different  dialectical  combinations  of  sound  contrasts 
uniformly  with  the  language  of  prose. 

57.  All  natural  development  oflanguage  conduces  to  a  continual 
unbounded  growth  of  dialectic  differences.  The  reasons  which 
impel  to  this  are  given  with  the  common  conditions  of  the  life  of 
language,  and  are  completely  inseparable  from  these.  The  idea 
is  unfortunately  still  met  with  in  philological  works  which 
enjoy  a  high  reputation,  that  the  earlier  centrifugal  movement,  by 
the  operation  of  which  dialects  were  said  to  have  arisen,  was 
counteracted  in  a  higher  stage  of  culture  in  a  time  of  more  lively 
intercourse,  by  a  backward '  centripetal  impulse.  This  idea  rests 
upon  imperfect  observation.     The  formation  of  a  common  language. 


which  writers  have  in  view  when  using  this  language,  does  not 
come  about  by  a  gradual  assimilation  of  the  dialects  to  each  other. 
The  common  language  does  not .  proceed  from  the  single  dialects 
by  the  same  process  as  that  by  which  a  later  form  of  the  dialect 
arose  from  a  previous  one.  It  is  rather  a  foreign  idiom  to  which 
the  dialect  is  sacrificed.  On  this  head  more  will  be  said  in  Chapter 


The  Active     T  j^   order  to   understand   the   phenomenon  which  we  usually 

Factors  in  I 

thcproduc-  J|_  designate  as  sound-change,  we  must  get  a  clear  idea  of  the 
Sound.  physical  and  psychical  processes  which  operate  in  the  production 
of  groups  of  sound.  If  we  disregard — as  in  this  case  we  ought,  and 
indeed  must  do — the  function  which  these  subserve,  the  following 
points  challenge  our  consideration  : — In  the  first  place,  the  move- 
■■  ments  of  the  organs  of  language,  as  originated  by  the  excite- 
ment of  the  motor  nerves,  and  the  muscular  activity  thereby 
awakened ;  secondly,  the  series  of  sensations  by  which  these 
movements  are  necessarily  accompanied — the  '  motory  sensation ' 
{bewegungs-gefiihl,  as  Lotze  and,  following  him,  Steinthal  have 
named  it) ;  thirdly,  the  sensations  of  tone  produced  in  the  hearers, 
among  whom,  under  normal  circumstances,  the  speaker  himself 
must  be  reckoned.  These  sensations  are,  of  course,  not  merely 
physiological  processes,  but  psychological  as  well.  Even  after 
the  physical  excitement  has  passed  away,  these  sensations  leave 
a  lasting  psychical  effect,  viz.,  in  the  shape  of  memory-pictures, 
which  are  of  the  greatest  importance  for  sound-change.  For  these 
are  the  only  means  of  connecting  the  single  physiological  pro- 
cesses, and  these  set  up  a  connexion  of  cause  and  effect  between 
the  earlier  and  later  production  of  the  same  combination  of  sounds. 
The   memory-picture  left  behind  by  the  sensation   of  the  move- 

1  See  his  Medicinische  Psychologie  (1852),  §  26,  p.  304 ;  also  his  Metaphysik,  ii.  p. 
586,  sqq.  For  motory  sensation,  see  G.  E.  Miiller  Zmc  grundlegung  der  psychophysik, 
g  iio-ii:,  and  A.  Strumpell  in  Archiv  fur  klinische  Medicin,  xxii.  p.  321,  sqq.  Wundt 
employs  the  expression  '  innervation '. 



ments  carried  out  before  is  that  which  renders  possible  the  repro- 
duction of  similar  movements.  Motory  and  sound  sensations 
need  necessarily  stand  in  no  intimate  connexion  with  each  other. 
But  both  enter  into  an  external  association,  since  the  speaker  hears 
himself  speaking  at  the  same  time.  The  mere  act  of  listening  to 
others  gives  no  motory  sensation,  and  thus  gives  no  capacity  of 
reproducing  the  combination  of  sounds  once  heard.  For  this 
reason,  an  effort  and  a  certain  amount  of  practice  is  necessary,  in 
order  to  enable  us  to  reproduce  in  speaking  any  sound  which  we 
have  not  been  hitherto  accustomed  to  utter. 

59.    The    question    naturally    presents    itself — What    is    the  sught  con- 
sciousness of 
analysis  of  the  motory  and  sound  sensations  respectively,  and  to  the  Element 

of  a  Word. 

what  grade  are  the  special  factors  in  their  analysis  consciously 
perceived  ?  Probably  nothing  has  hindered  a  correct  appreciation 
of  the  nature  of  sound-change  so  much  as  the  fact  that  the  extent 
and  the  distinctness  of  consciousness  in  this  subject  has  been  over- 
rated. It  is  a  great  mistake  to  suppose  that  for  the  apprehension 
of  the  right  sound  of  any  word  in  its  peculiarity — in  fact,  for  the 
possibility  of  an  excitement  of  the  ideas  bound  up  with  it — the 
single  sounds  composing  the  word  need  come  into  consciousness 
at  all.  Indeed,  it  is  not  always  indispensable  to  the  apprehension 
of  an  entire  sentence  that  even  the  single  words  composing  it 
should  come  into  consciousness  according  to  their  sound  and  their 
signification.  The  self-deception  under  which  grammarians  labour 
depends  on  their  having  regarded  the  word  not  as  a  portion  of  the 
living  language — audible  for  a  moment,  and  then  passing  away — 
but  as  something  independent  to  be  analysed  at  leisure,  with  a 
view  to  its  leisurely  dismemberment.  A  further  source  of  deception 
lies  in  the  habit  of  starting  not  from  the  spoken,  but  from  the 
written  word.  In  writing,  no  doubt,  the  word  seems  separated  into 
its  elements,  and  it  may  appear  requisite  that  every  one  who  writes 


should  presuppose  this  dismemberment.  But  in  real  truth  the 
matter  is  somewhat  different.  No  doubt  when  writing  was  dis- 
covered, and  each  time  that  it  was  applied  afresh  to  a  language  not 
hitherto  expressed  by  its  aid,  such  dismemberment  must  necessarily 
have  been  presupposed.  Further,  it  must  continuously  happen  that 
each  time  that  handwriting  is  learned  anew,  an  exercise  in  the 
spelling  of  spoken  words  must  go  hand  in  hand  with  it.  But  after 
a  certain  facility  has  been  attained,  the  process  in  writing  is  not 
exactly  in  the  first  place  the  dismemberment  of  each  word  into  its 
single  component  sounds,  and  then  for  each  single  sound  the  setting 
down  of  its  proper  letter.  The  speed  with  which  the  process  is 
carried  out  excludes  the  possibility  of  the  single  factors  coming 
clearly  into  consciousness,  and  demonstrates  at  the  same  time  that 
it  is  unnecessary  that  they  should  do  so  for  a  regular  and  normal 
course.  But  a  really  abbreviated  process  comes  in,  whereby  writing 
is  to  some  extent  emancipated  from  language — a  process  which  we 
shall  on  a  later  occasion  have  to  consider  rather  more  closely.  And 
if  we  observe  a  little  more  accurately  the  facts  connected  with  this 
dismembering  faculty  of  the  man  who  can  write,  it  will  clearly 
force  itself  on  our  notice  how  little  consciousness  intrudes  into  the 
elements  of  word-sound.  We  can  daily  make  experience  of  the 
fact  that  the  manifold  discrepancies  between  writing  and  pro- 
nunciation pass  to  a  great  extent  unheeded  by  the  members  of 
any  given  linguistic  community,  and  strike  the  foreigner  first, 
though  he  can  give  himself  no  satisfactory  explanation  of  what 
these  discrepancies  repose  on.  Thus  every  German  who  has  not 
enjoyed  a  training  in  the  physiology  of  sound  is  convinced  that  he 
writes  as  he  speaks.  Suppose,  however,  that  he  really  is  justified 
in  entertaining  this  conviction  as  against  the  Englishman  and  the 
Frenchman,  still,  to  omit  niceties,  there  are  plenty  of  striking 
instances   in   which  the  pronunciation    differs   greatly   from    the 



writing.  It  occurs  to  few  that  the  final  consonant  in  tag,  feld,  and 
lieb  is  a  different  sound  from  that  caught  in  tages,  feldes,  liebes,  or 
that  the  n  in  the  German  word  anger  represents  a  sound  essentially 
different  from  that  of  the  n  heard  in  land.  In  the  common  pro- 
nunciation of  ungnade  we  have  a  guttural  nasal,  in  that  of  unbillick 
a  labial  nasal ;  but  no  one  thinks  of  this.  It  excites  actual  sur- 
prise to  assert  that  in  the  German  word  lange,  g  is  not  heard  ;  that 
in  the  second  syllable  of  legen,  reden,  ritter,  schutteln,  e  is  not  heard ; 
that  the  final  consonant  of  leben  in  the  ordinary  pronunciation 
contains  no  n,  but  is  an  vt  with  no  e  preceding  it.  Indeed,  it  is  safe 
to  assert  that  most  people  will  dispute  these  facts,  even  after  their 
attention  has  been  drawn  to  them.  This  holds  true  in  many  cases, 
even  of  good  scholars.  We  see  from  this  how  entirely  the  analysis  , 
of  the  word  is  learnt  with  the  writing,  and  how  small  is  the  con-  ) 
sciousness  of  the  actual  elements  of  the  spoken  word. 

60.  A  real  analysis  of  the  word  into  its  proper  elements  is  not  The  word  a 

*  continuous 

merely  extremely  difficult,  but  is  actually  impossible.*  A  word  is  Series  of 


not  a  united  compound  of  a  definite  number  of  independent  sounds,  numerous 
of  which  each  can  be  expressed  by  an  alphabetical  sign  ;  but  it  is  « cf.  Sweet's 

Handbook  0/ 

essentially  a  continuous  series  of  infinitely  numerous  sounds,  and  ^^''«'*-  p- 
alphabetical  symbols  do  no  more  than  bring  out  certain  character- 
istic points  of  this  series  in  an  imperfect  way.  The  remainder, 
which  remains  undenoted,  no  doubt  necessarily  reveals  itself  from 
the  definition  of  these  points,  but  reveals  itself  only  up  to  a  cer- 
tain point.  The  continuity  of  sound  is  seen  with  the  greatest  clear- 
ness in  the  case  of  the  so-called  diphthongs,  which  exhibit  such  a 
series  of  very  numerous  elements  (cf.  Sievers'  Phonetik,  §  19,  i.  a). 
Sievers  was  the  first  to  expressly  bring  out  the  significance  of  the 
transitional  sounds.  But  it  follows  from  this  continuity  of  the 
word  that  an  idea  of  the  individual  parts  cannot  be  a  self-yielded 
result,  but  must  be  the  fruit  of  scientific  reflection,  however  primi- 


tive  this  may  be,  and  it  is  the  practical  need  of  writing  to  express 
sounds  which  has  conduced  to  this. 

6i.  What  is  true  of  the  sound-picture  is  also  naturally  true  of  the 
motory  sensation.  Indeed,  we  must  go  further  in  this  point.  No  one 
can  maintain  that  the  individual  ever  has  any  idea  of  the  different 
movements  made  by  his  organs  in  the  act  of  speaking.  It  is  plain 
that  these  can  only  be  ascertained  after  the  most  careful  scientific 
observation,  and  that  scientific  men  are  not  agreed  upon  many 
points  in  connexion  with  this  question.  Even  the  most  superficial 
and  roughest  views  as  to  these  movements  are  not  possible  without 
a  voluntary  habit  of  careful  and  protracted  observation.  They 
are  superfluous,  and  not  needed  to  produce  sounds  and  sound- 
groups  which  we  are  trained  to  produce.  The  process  seems  to 
be  the  following.  Each  movement  excites  in  a  definite  manner 
certain  sensitive  nerves,  and  thus  evokes  a  feeling  which  associates 
itself  with  the  direction  of  the  movement  of  their  centre  by  means 
of  the  motor  nerves.  If  this  association  is  sufficiently  established, 
and  if  the  memory-picture  left  by  the  feeling  is  sufficiently  strong 
— a  condition  which,  as  a  rule,  is  not  reached  without  practice 
{i.e.  without  frequent  repetition  of  the  same  movement,  varied,  it 
may  be,  with  many  vain  attempts) — then  the  memory-picture  of 
the  sensation  may  have  power  to  reproduce  the  "movement  asso- 
ciated therewith  as  its  reflection  ;  and  if  the  sensation  called  up 
thereby  corresponds  with  the  memory-picture,  then  we  may 
also  rest  assured  that  we  have  carried  out  the  same  movement  as 

62.  But  we  might  concede  that  the  degree  of  consciousness  which 
the  single  factors  of  the  sound-picture  and  of  the  motory  sensation 
attain  by  dint  of  mastery  of  writing,  and,  further,  by  reflection,  was 
even  greater  than  it  is  ;— we  might  concede  that  an  absolutely  clear 
consciousness  of  these  elements  was  absolutely  necessary  for  a 



mastery  of  the  mother-tongue  as  of  any  foreign  language  (and 
certainly  a  higher  degree  of  clear  consciousness  is  necessary  than 
in  the  application  of  what  has  been  learnt  by  practice) ;  still  from 
this  it  would  not  follow  that  the  same  degree  of  clearness  must  be 
attained  in  common  daily  discourse.  It  rather  lies  in  the  nature 
of  the  psychical  organisation  that  all  ideas  which  originally  oper- 
ated merely  by  consciousness  receive  by  practice  the  capacity  of 
operating  automatically ;  and  that  this  automatic  operation  is  the 
first  and  indispensable  condition  of  the  speedy  course  of  ideas 
demanded  in  every  position  of  daily  life  and  in  language  as  well. 
Even  the  professed  student  of  the  physiology  of  sounds  will  speak 
much  and  hear  much  without  a  single  sound  revealing  itself  dis- 
tinctly to  his  consciousness. 

63.  For  the  proper  judgment,  then,  of  the  natural  life  of  lan- 
guage, regulated  by  no  species  of  pedantry,  we  must  cling  to  the 
fundamental  maxim  that  sounds  are  produced  and  taken  cognisance 
of  without  any  clear  consciousness.  This  statement  contradicts  all 
such  explanatory  theories  as  presuppose  in  the  minds  of  indi 
viduals  an  idea  of  the  sound-system  of  language;  under  which 
head  come  several  hypotheses  as  to  the  German  sound-shifting 

64.  On  the  other  hand,  however,  the   unconsciousness  of  the  Control  of 

~  Speech, 

elements  does  not  exclude  an  exact  control  over  them.  We  may 
utter  or  hear  a  group  of  sounds  to  which  we  are  accustomed 
without  ever  thinking  that  it  is  in  fact  precisely  this  group,  made 
up  in  such  and  such  a  way ;  but  as  soon  as  in  a  single  element  a 
departure  from  the  usual  is  observed — which  departure  needs  to 
be  but  very  slight — it  is  noticed,  unless  indeed  any  extraordinary 
obstacles  supervene  to  prevent  it ;  and  each  departure  from  the 
accustomed  unconscious  course  of  ideas  naturally  forces  itself 
upon  our  consciousness.     Of  course  it  does  not  follow  that,  with 


the  consciousness  of  the  departure,  the  consciousness  of  its  nature 
and  cause  is  also  given. 
■imitsto  65.  The  possibility  of  control  extends  as  far  as  the  power  of 

istinguUh-  perceiving  differences.  This,  however,  is  not  limitless,  while  the 
]g  oun  s.  pQggj{jjjjj.y  qJ  gfadual  transitions  in  the  movements  of  the  organs 
of  speech,  and  of  course  also  in  the  sounds  produced  thereby,  is 
certainly  limitless.  Thus,  between  a  and  i,  as  well  as  between  a 
and  u,  there  lies  an  unbounded  number  of  possible  transitions  of 
vocal  sound.  In  the  same  way  the  places  of  the  articulation  of  all 
the  lingual-palatal  sounds  lend  themselves  to  representation  by  the 
picture  of  a  continuous  line  in  which  each  point  may  be  the  one 
preferred.  Between  them  and  the  labial  sounds  certainly  such  an 
imperceptible  transition  is  impossible ;  still  the  denti-labials  stand 
in  close  relationship  to  the  denti-linguals  (tk,f).  In  the  same  way 
the  transition  from  check  to  fricative,  and  vice  versa,  may  be  gradu- 
ally brought  about ;  for  complete  closure  and  the  greatest  possible 
narrowing  process  approach  each  other  nearly.  All  differences  of 
quantity,  of  pitch,  of  energy  in  articulation,  as  in  expiration,  are 
conceivable  in  all  possible  transitions.  And  so  with  much  besides. 
It  is  this  circumstance  specially  which  renders  sound-change 

66.  Now,  if  we  reflect  that  it  does  not  depend  merely  upon  the 
differences  in  those  sounds  into  which  we  commonly,  though 
inaccurately,  divide  the  word,  but  also  upon  the  differences  in  the 
transition  sounds,  in  the  accent,  the  time,  etc. ;  and  further,  if  we 
reflect  that  unequal  portions  may  always  be  brought  into  combina- 
tion with  a  series  of  equal  portions, — it  must  then  be  clear  that 
a  manifold  variety,  is  possible  in  the  groups  of  sound,  and  this 
even  in  the  case  where  the  actual  difference  is  comparatively 
small.  For  this  reason  it  is  possible  that  strikingly  different 
groups  may  be  still  conceived  of  as  essentially  identical,  owing  to 


their,  on  the  whole,  superior  resemblances  ;  and  this  is  what  renders 
an  understanding  possible  between  speakers  of  different  dialects,  so 
long  as  the  differences  do  not  pass  beyond  a  certain  limit.  But 
for  this  very  reason  a  number  of  variations  may  cet  in  whose 
difference  it  is  hard  to  note,  or  indeed  impossible,  until  attention 
has  been  specially  drawn  to  them. 

6^.  Early  childhood  is  for  every  one  an  experimental  stage,  in  Deviations 
which   the   individual   gradually   learns    by    manifold    efforts    to  Prescriptions 

1  oftheMotorj 

imitate  what  has  been  spoken  before  him  by  those  who  surround  sensation 


him.  When  the  greatest  amount  of  success  has  crowned  his 
efforts  a  period  of  comparative  rest  ensues.  The  former  important 
vacillations  cease,  and  there  exists  from  this  time  forward  a  great 
uniformity  in  the  pronunciation  and  freedom  from  disturbing 
causes,  unless  indeed  the  evident  influences  of  foreign  dialects,  or 
of  a  written  language,  come  between.  This  uniformity,  however, 
can  never  become  absolute.  Less  important  vacillations  in  the 
pronunciation  of  the  same  word  in  the  same  place  in  the  sentence 
are  inevitable.  For,  speaking  generally,  in  the  case  of  every 
movement  of  the  body,  however  much  such  movement  may  be 
the  result  of  training,  however  iully  the  motory  sensation  may  have 
been  developed,  there  still  remains  a  certain  amount  of  uncertainty ; 
it  still  remains  left  to  chance  (in  a  certain  extent,  however  limited), 
whether  the  pronunciation  be  uttered  with  absolute  exactness,  or 
whether  a  slight  deviation  from  the  correct  path  towards,  one  side 
or  the  other  manifests  itself.  Even  the  most  practised  marksman 
misses  his  mark  sometimes,  and  would  miss  it  in  most  cases  if  it 
were  a  mere  point  with  no  extension,  and  if  his  weapon  had  only 
a  single  point  which  could  touch  the  goal.  Any  one's  hand- 
writing may  be  as  defined  and  characteristic  as  you  please,  and 
his  general  peculiarities  may  be  at  once  recognisable,  still  he  will 
not  reproduce,  each  time  he  writes,  the  same  letters  and  the  same 


combinations  of  letters  in  absolutely  the  same  way.  It  must  be 
the  same  with  the  movements  whereby  sounds  are  produced. 
This  variability  of  pronunciation,  which  remains  unnoticed  because 
of  the  narrow  limits  in  which  it  moves,  gives  the  key  to  our  com- 
prehension of  the  otherwise  incomprehensible  fact  that  a  change 
of  usage  in  the  sounds  of  a  language  sets  in  and  comes  to  its 
fulfilment  without  the  least  suspicion  on  the  part  of  those  in 
whom  this  change  is  being  carried  out. 
viodifica-  68.  If  the  motory  sensation  were  always  to  remain  unchanged  as 

ion,  or  Dis- 

jiacement,  of  a  mcmory-picturc,  the  insignificant  deviations  would  always  centre 

he  Motory 

>ensation.  round  the  same  point  with  the  same  maximum  of  distance.  In  fact, 
however,  this  sensation  is  the  product  of  all  the  earlier  impressions 
received  in  the  course  of  carrying  out  the  movement  in  question, 
and,  according  to  a  common  law,  the  impressions,  not  merely 
those  which  are  absolutely  identical,  but  also  those  that  are 
imperceptibly  different  from  each  other,  are  fused  into  one.  Cor- 
respondingly to  their  difference,  the  motory  sensation  must  be 
somewhat  modified  with  each  new  impression,  to  however 
insignificant  an  extent.  It  is,  in  this  process,  of  importance  that 
the  later  impressions  always  have  a  stronger  after-influence  than 
the  earlier.  It  is  thus  impossible  to  co-ordinate  the  sensation  with 
the  average  of  all  the  impressions  rt-ceived  during  the  whole 
course  of  life  ;  rather,  the  numerically-speaking  inferior  may,  by  the 
fact  of  their  freshness,  outbalance  the  weight  of  the  more  frequent. 
It  must,  however,  be  observed  that  supposing  the  distance  of  the 
possible  divergence  to  remain  the  same,  a  displacement  of  the 
limits  of  this  divergence  is  brought  about  with  each  alteration 
of  the  sensation. 

Qg.  Let  us  now  take  a  line  in  which  every  point  is  exactly  fixed 
as  the  proper  normal  path  of  movement  to  which  the  motory 
sensation  leads;   then,   of  course,  the   distance   from  that  point 



which  is  possible  as  maximum  when  the  movement  is  really 
carried  out  without  conflicting  with  the  sensation,  is  commonly 
as  great  upon  one  side  as  upon  the  opposite.  But  it  does  not 
follow  from  this  that  the  deviations  which  really  set  in  must  be 
uniformly  divided  on  either  side  according  to  number  and 

70.  These  deviations,  which  are  not  defined  by  the  motory  sensa- 
tion, have,  as  is  natural,  their  independent  causes — causes,  moreover, 
wholly  unconnected  with  the  motory  sensation.  If  such  causes  act 
at  the  same  moment,  with  exactly  the  same  force,  in  opposite  direc- 
tions, then  their  operations  cancel  each  other,  and  the  movement 
is  carried  out  with  absolute  exactness.  This  case  will  occur  very 
seldom  indeed.  In  by  far  the  most  numerous  cases  the  balance 
will  incline  to  one  side  or  the  other.  It  is,  however,  possible  for 
the  relation  of  the  forces  to  undergo  manifold  changes  according 
to  circumstances.  If  this  change  is  as  favourable  for  one  side 
as  for  the  other ;  if  a  deviation  towards  one  side  always  alternates 
with  a  corresponding  deviation  towards  the  other  side,  in  this  case 
the  very  smallest  displacements  of  the  motory  sensation  will  be 
immediately  arrested.  Matters  are,  however,  very  different  when 
the  causes  which  impel  to  one  side  have  the  preponderance  over 
those  which  have  an  immediately  opposite  tendency,  whether  this 
be  in  each  particular  case  or  only  in  the  generality.  The  original 
deviation  may  have  been  ever  so  insignificant,  the  motory  sensation 
having  suffered  thereby  the  slightest  possible  displacement,  still  for 
the  next  time  a  somewhat  greater  displacement  from  the  original 
is  rendered  possible,  and  with  this  coincidently  a  displacement  of 
the  sensation.  There  thus  gradually  arises,  by  adding  together  all 
the  displacements  (which  we  can  hardly  imagine  small  enough), 
a  notable  difference — whether  it  be  that  the  movement  progresses 
steadily  in  a  special  direction,  or  that  the  advance  is  regularly 


interrupted  by  relapses,  if  only  the  latter  are  less  frequent  and 
smaller  than  the  first 
Causes  of  the        71,  Xhc  reason  whv  the  inclination  to  deviation  is  greater  on 


one  side  than  on  the  other  must  be  probably  sought  in  the  fact 
that  the  deviation  towards  the  side  to  which  it  tends  is  in  some 
respect  more  conj^enient.  The  examination  of  the  nature  of  this 
greater  or  less  degree  of  convenience  is  a  purely  physiological  task. 
It  must  not,  however,  be  supposed  that  it  is  not  at  the  same  time 
conditioned  by  psychology.  Accent  and  time,  which  are  of  such 
decisive  significance  in  the  process,  and  also  the  energy  dis- 
played in  muscular  activity,  are  essentially  dependent  on  psychical 
conditions,  but  their  operation  upon  sound  relations  is  neverthe- 
less physiological.  In  the  process  of  progressive  assiinilation  it 
can  be  nothing  but  the  idea  of  the  sound  yet  to  be  uttered  which 
operates  upon  the  preceding  one ;  but  this  is  psychical  relation  of 
a  very  simple  kind  manifesting  itself  uniformly  throughout,  while 
all  special  definition  of  the  process  of  assimilation  must  be  based 
upon  an  examination  of  the  physical  generation  of  the  sounds  in 

72.  For  the  task  which  we  have  set  ourselves,  it  is  sufficient  to 
point  to  certain  general  points  of  view.  There  are  a  great  number 
of  cases  in  which  we  may  say  quite  simply,  This  sound-group  is 
more  convenient  than  that.  Thus  the  Italian  words  otto  and  cattivo 
are  without  any  doubt  easier  to  pronounce  than  the  Latin  octo,  and 
the  NHG.  empfangen  than  a  form  *  entfangen,  unaffected  by  assimi- 
lation, would  be.  Assimilation,  either  partial  or  entire,  is  a 
phenomenon  occurring  in  all  languages.  When,  on  the  other 
hand,  the  single  sounds  come  into  question,  hardly  any  general 
principles  can  be  laid  down  as  to  the  greater  or  less  facility  of 
pronouncing  one  rather  than  another,  and  all  theories  on  this  point 
based  on  abstractions  from  narrow  grounds  show  themselves  worth- 


less  when  confronted  with  a  fuller  experience.  And,  further,  no 
perfectly  general  definitions  can  be  given  for  the  combination  of 
several  sounds.  Facility  depends  to  a  great  extent  upon  condi- 
tions of  quantity  and  upon  the  accentuation,  expiratory  as  well 
as  musical.  One  sound-group  is  convenient  in  the  long  syllable, 
another  in  the  short;  one  in  the  syllable  which  bears  the  stress, 
another  in  that  which  has  no  stress ;  while  the  circumflex  makes 
other  demands  than  the  grave  or  the  acute.  But,  further,  the 
measure  of  convenience  adapts  itself  to  a  quantity  of  circumstances 
which  may  be  different  for  each  individual,  but  which  may  attach 
themselves  to  larger  groups  as  well  in  the  same  or  in  a  similar 
way  without  being  shared  by  the  others.  One  point  requires 
specially  emphasising  in  this  case.*  A  certain  harmony  of  theV^^J^^^^''' 
sound-system  is  found  existing  in  all  languages.  We  see  from  \qj^'  ^  '''^ 
this  that  the  direction  in  which  a  sound  deviates  must  be  partially 
conditioned  by  the  direction  taken  by  the  other  sounds.  Much 
depends,  as  Sievers  has  shown,  in  this  case  on  the  so-called  neutral 
position  of  the  organs.  Each  variation  in  this  entails,  of  course, 
also  a  variation  in  relation  to  the  convenience  of  single  sounds. 
A  gradual  displacement  of  this  neutral  position  will  have  to  be 
judged  precisely  after  the  analogy  of  what  we  have  said  above 
about  the  similar  displacement  of  the  motory  sensation. 

7^.  It  is  of  great  importance  never  to  lose  sight  of  the  fact  'Convcni- 

'  ^  *^  ^  ence '  a 

that  the  consideration  of  convenience  in  each  production  of  sound  secondary 

Cause :  the 

affords  in  every  case  only  a  very  subordinate  and  secondary  cause ;  Mowry 

^  ■  ._  Sensation 

the  motory  sensation  always  remains  the  really  decisive  motive  the  Primaiy 
.  power.  One  of  the  commonest  errors  is  the  supposition  that  a 
change  which  has  arisen  in  a  long  period  by  numerous  small  dis- 
placements is  to  be  referred  to  a  single  act  resulting  from  a  desire 
for  convenience.  This  error  partly  results  from  the  method  in 
which  rules  for  sound  are  apprehended  in  practical  grammars  and 


even  in  grammars  which  claim  to  teach  on  scientific  principles. 
For  instance,  it  is  commonly  said  that  if  a  sonant  consonant 
appears  as  a  check,  it  takes  the  form  in  this  language  of  the  corre- 
sponding surd  {cf.  MHG.  mtde — meit,  ribe — reip),  just  as  if  we  had 
to  do  with  a  change  occurring  each  time  occasioned  by  the  fact 
of  the  surd  being  better  adapted  to  the  close  of  the  word.  The 
truth  is  that  it  is  in  this  case  the  motory  sensation  developed 
by  tradition  which  produces  the  surd,  while  the  gradual  reduction 
of  the  voice-tone  to  absolute  annihilation,  and  strengthening  of  the 
pressure  of  expiration  connected  therewith,  belong  to  a  period 
perhaps  long  past  and  gone.  It  is  equally  mistaken  to  refer  the 
appearance  of  a  sound-change  in  each  case  to  some  particular 
manifestation  of  laziness,  weariness,  or  neglect,  and  to  ascribe  its 
non-appearance  in  other  cases  to  some  special  care  and  observa- 
tion. It  may  well  be  that  the  motory  sensation  is  not  in  every  case 
developed  to  the  same  degree  of  certainty.  But  there  is  no  such 
thing  as  a  conscious  effort  made  to  prevent  a  sound-change.  For 
those  who  are  affected  by  the  change  have  no  suspicion  that  there 
is  anything  to  guard  against,  and  they  habitually  pass  their  lives 
in  the  belief  that  they  speak  to-day  as  they  spoke  years  ago,  and 
that  they  will  continue  to  the  end  to  speak  in  the  same  way. 
Were  any  one  able  to  compare  the  movements  which  his  organs 
made  in  the  utterance  of  a  word  many  years  before  with  those 
which  they  make  at  present,  he  would  most  likely  find  a  striking 
difference.  But  to  make  any  such  real  comparison  would  be  an 
impossibility.  The  only  possible  test  is  in  each  case  the  motory 
sensation  ;  and  this  is  correspondingly  modified — in  fact,  exists  no 
longer  in  his  mind  as  it  existed  on  the  previous  occasion. 

74.  There  is,  however,  a  controlling  source  which  opposes  a 
powerful  barrier  to  the  development  of  the  single  individual  just 
described — that  is,  the  sound-piqture.     Motory  sensation  is'  formed 

Ill-]  ON  SOUND-CHANGE.  49 

from  the  movements  of  the  speaker  only ;  the  sound-picture,  on  the 
other  hand,  takes  shape  not  merely  from  our  own,  utterances,  but 
also  from  all  that  we  hear  from  those  with  whom  we  enter  into 
communication.     Now,  if  it  were  the  case  that  a  notable  displace- 
ment of  the  motory  sensation  were  to  occur,  accompanied  by  no 
corresponding   displacement   of  the  sound-picture,  a  discrepancy 
would  be  felt  between  the  sound  produced  by  the  first  and  the 
sound-picture  obtained  by  the  previous  sensations.     Such  a  dis- 
crepancy is  avoided  by  the  motory  sensation  correcting  itself  after 
the  sound-picture.     This  happens  in  the  same  way  as  the  motory 
sensation  directs  itself  at  first  in  childhood  according  to  the  sound- 
picture.     It  belongs  to  the  very  essence  of  language  as  a  means  of 
communication,  that  the  single  individual  should  always  find  him- 
self in  agreement  with  the  companions  with  whom  he  communi- 
cates.    Of  course  no  such  thing  as  a  conscious  effort  at  this  result 
exists,  but  the  demand  for  such  agreement  remains,  as  something 
self-intelligible,  unconscious.     This  demand  cannot  either  be  com- 
plied with  with  absolute  exactness.     If  the  motory  sensation  of  the 
individual   cannot  fully  master   his  movements,  and   is   actually 
exposed   to  slight  deviations,  the   free  room   for  the   movement 
which  finds  play  within  a  group  of  individuals  must  of  course  be 
still   greater,  for  it  will  certainly  never  be  in  the  power  of  the 
mptory  sensation   of  each   individual   to    satisfy  completely  the 
sound-picture  which  floats  before  him.     And  there  is  this  further 
consideration,  that  this  sound-picture  as  well  must  take  a  some- 
what different  shape  in  the  case  of  each  individual,  thanks  to  the 
differences  which  exist  in  sound-sensations,  and  is  likewise  subject 
to  perpetual  vacillations.     But  these  vacillations,  within  a  group 
connected  by  active  communication,  cannot  pass  beyond  rather 
narrow  limits.     They  are  in  this  case  unnoticed,  or,  even  should 
they  be   noticed   on   nearer   observation,  they  still   hardly  admit 



of  definition,  or  indeed  of  expression,  even  by  the  aid  of  the 
most  perfect  alphabet.  This  is  not  merely  a  matter  of  i  priori 
suspicion,  but  lends  itself  to  objective  observation  in  the  case  of 
living  dialects — of  course  not  in  the  case  of  those  which  show  a 
graduated  influence  of  the  written  language  If  deviations  more 
or  less  violent  in  the  case  of  an  individual  are  found — for  instance, 
as  the  result  of  an  organic  fault— this  makes  little  difference  in  the 
result  of  the  whole. 
Relation  75.  As  long,  then,  as  the  single  individual  with  his  tendency  to 

"ndivlduai  deviation  stands  alone  opposed  to  his  companions  in  intercourse, 
toUs'"^  he  can  only  yield  to  this  tendency  in  a  very  limited  measure, 
vXk.'"^  seeing  that  its  operations  are  always  counteracted  by  counter- 
operations,  which  regulate  the  result.  A  displacement  of  greater 
extent  can  only  appear  if  it  prevails  throughout  the  entirety  of 
the  individuals  in  a  group  which  is  to  some  extent  secluded  from 
all  external  influences,  at  least  in  comparison  to  the  activity  of 
the  communication  prevailing  within  its  circuit.  The  possibility  of 
such  a  process  needs  no  demonstration  in  cases  where  the  deviation 
suits  the  convenience  of  all,  or  almost  all,  the  organs  of  speech 
better  than  the  strict  conservancy  of  the  direction  of  the  motory 
sensation.  It  must  be  specially^  noticed  in  this  connexion  that  the 
already  existing  correspondence  in  accent,  time,  etc.,  gives  an 
impulse  towards  the  same  path.  The  same  holds  good  of  corre- 
spondence in  the  neutral  position.  But  this  is  not  nearly  sufficient 
to  explain  the  whole  proceeding.  We  see,  of  course,  that  manifold 
developments  proceed  from  the  same  starting-point,  and  this 
without  necessarily  in  every  case  being  conditioned  by  changes 
in  accent  or  other  circumstances  of  any  kind  which  claim  as  their 
exciting  cause  psychology ;  and  we  must  ever  put  the  question 
anew — How  comes  it  that  precisely  the  individuals  composing 
this  group  undergo  in  common  the  influence  of  such  and  such 



change?  Similarity  of  climate,  of  soil,  of  life  has  been  cited  to 
explain  the  difficulty.  We  have,  however,  to  state  with  reference 
to  this  that  up  to  the  present  date  not  even  the  first  steps  have 
been  taken  for  methodically  collecting  materials  relating  to  these 
which  might  tend  to  prove  dependence  of  the  development  of 
language  on  such  influences.  What  is  advanced  in  favour  of  this 
theory  in  individual  cases  may  be  easily  reduced  to  a  reductio  ad 
absurdum.  It  hardly  admits  of  doubt  that  peculiarities  in  the 
organs  of  speech  are  transmitted  by  inheritance,  and  hence  a  degree 
of  relationship,  closer  or  more  remote,  is  to  be  reckoned  among  the 
other  factors  which  condition  a  greater  or  less  correspondence  in 
the  construction  of  the  organs.  But  this  is  not  the  only  cause  on 
which  the  latter  depends.  And  just  as  little  does  the  development 
of  language  depend  solely  on  the  construction  of  the  organs.  In 
addition,  however,  dialectic  separation  and  dialectic  reconciliation 
seem  in  very  many  instances  to  belie  the  actual  physical  relation- 
ship. It  will  then  be  labour  in  vain  to  endeavour  to  explain 
the  fact  of  the  agreement  of  all  the  individuals  in  a  single  group  as 
a  spontaneous  result,  and  therein  to  overlook  the  other  factor, 
which  is  operative  side  by  side  with  this  spontaneity,  viz.,  the  force 
of  community  of  intercourse. 

•j6.  If  we  start  from  the  assumption  that  each  individual  has 
his  special  bent  and  his  special  development,  the  possibility  of  very 
numerous  variations  is  certainly  admitted.  But  if  we  take  each 
factor  which  comes  under  our  consideration  as  isolated,  then  the 
number  of  the  possible  variations  is  indeed  very  limited.  If  we 
observe  the  changes  of  each  single  sound  taken  singly,  and  if  we 
again  differentiate  in  this  process  the  displacement  of  the  locality 
of  articulation,  transition  of  closure  to  narrowing,  and  vice  versa, 
strengthening  or  weakening  of  the  pressure  of  expiration,  etc., 
we  shall  often  be  in  the  position  of  obtaining  two  possible  cases, 


and  only  two,  of  deviation.  Thus,  for  instance,  the  a  sound  may 
gradually  change  into  that  of  all  possible  vowels  ;  but  the  direction 
in  which  it  moves  can  still  in  the  first  instance  be  only  that  towards 
i,  or  that  towards  u.  Now  it  can  certainly  easily  occur  that  the 
two  or  three  possible  directions  may,  in  a  large  linguistic  area, 
all  things  considered,  be  fairly  balanced.  But  it  is  very  unlikely 
that  this  should  occur  in  all  the  different  points  at  every  time. 
The  case  that,  in  an  area  held  together  by  an  extremely  active 
intercourse,  one  tendency  should  gain  the  upper  hand  may  easily 
occur,  solely  by  the  caprice  of  chance — i.e.  even  if  the  agreement 
of  the  majority  is  not  conditioned  by  a  more  close  inner  connexion 
as  against  the  individuals  who  stand  outside  the  group,  and  if 
the  causes  which  impel  to  this  definite  direction  are  different,  as 
they  may  be,  in  the  case  of  different  individuals.  The  fact  of 
the  prevalence  of  a  tendency  in  such  a  narrow  circle  suffices  to 
prevail  against  the  opposing  barriers.  The  active  cause  is,  that  the 
displacement  of  the  motory  sensation  to  which  the  majority  leans 
entails  a  simultaneous  displacement  of  the  sound-picture  in  the  cor- 
responding direction.  The  individual  is,  in  fact,  not  dependent  on 
the  entirety  of  the  members  of  the  whole  linguistic  community 
with  respect  to  the  arrangement  of  his  ideas  of  sound,  but  only,  as 
an  invariable  rule,  on  those  with  whom  he  enters  into  intercourse. 
Nor  is  his  dependence  even  on  these  uniform,  but  differs  widely, 
according  to  the  frequency  of  the  communication,  and  according 
as  each  individual  brings  his  activity  to  bear  in  the  process.  It 
does  not  matter  from  how  many  persons  he  hears  such  and  such 
peculiarity  of  language;  the  whole  consideration  is  how,  often 
he  hears  them.  We  must,  while  on  this  topic,  observe  that  the 
speakers  who  deviate  from  the  commonly  adopted  standard  may 
again  differ  among  themselves,  and  that  their  several  influences 
may  thus  reciprocally  neutralise  each  other.     If,  however,  a  definite 



displacement  of  the  motory  sensation  has  set  in  owing  to  the 
removal  of  the  retarding  influence  of  communication,  we  then 
find  that  in  the  course  of  this  tendency  a  further  slight  deviation  is 
rendered  possible.  Meantime,  however,  the  minority  as  well  is 
swept  into  the  current  by  the  movement.  Precisely  the  same 
causes  which  prevent  the  minority  from  departing  too  far  from 
the  common  usage  in  their  progressive  movement,  forbid  also 
that  it  should  lag  much  behind  the  advance  of  the  majority.  For 
the  superior  frequency  of  any  pronunciation  is  the  only  measure 
for  its  correctness  and  fitness  to  serve  as  a  standard.  Thus  the 
movement  progresses  in  this  way — there  is  always  a  part  some- 
what in  front  of  the  average  and  another  part  somewhat  behind  it ; 
but  the  whole  advances  with  so  little  difference  between  its  parts 
that  a  striking  contrast  never  occurs  between  individuals  who 
stand  in  equally  close  communication  with  each  other. 

TJ.  In  this  way  it  will  always  be  found  that  the  displacements 
which  occur  within  the  same  generation  are  slight  and  scanty. 
More  notable  displacements  do  not  occur  until  an  older  generation 
has  been  thrust  aside  by  a  new  one  springing  up.  In  the  first 
place,  if  a  displacement  has  already  penetrated  to  the  majority, 
while  a  minority  still  opposes  it,  it  will  be  found  that  the  coming 
generation  will  naturally  adapt  itself  to  the  majority,  especially 
when  the  majority  has  the  more  convenient  pronunciation.  Even 
if  the  minority  in  these  cases  should  cling  to  the  old  custom,  it 
must  yet  die  out.  It  may,  however,  be  the  case  that  the  impulse 
of  the  younger  generation  may  set  in  a  special  direction  differing 
from  the  elder  one.  The  same  motives  which  in  the  case  of  the 
elder  generation  impel  to  a  particular  kind  of  deviation,  from  the 
impulse  already  formed,  must  in  the  case  of  the  younger  generation 
operate  at  the  very  outset  upon  the  shape  to  be  taken  by  their 
language.    It  may  therefore  be  properly  said  that  the  main  occasion 


I  of  sound-change  consists  in  the  transmis_sion  of  sounds,  to_new 
'  individuals.     For  this  process,  then,  the  expression  '  change,'  if  we 
would  remain  true  to  facts,  is  quite  inapplicable ;  we  have  rather 
to  deal  with  a  new  creation  deviating  from  the  old  form. 

78.  In  the  process  of  mastering  language  the  sounds  alone  are 
transmitted,  and  not  the  motory  sensations  as  well.  The  agree- 
ment of  the  sounds  which  are  self-generated  with  those  heard  from 
others  gives  the  individual  the  assurance  requisite  that  he  is 
speaking  correctly.  That  the  motory  sensation  has  taken  an  ap- 
proximately identical  form  can  only  be  assumed  on  the  supposi- 
tion that  approximately  similar  sounds  can  only  be  produced  by 
i  approximately  identical  movements  of  the  organs  of  language.  If 
it  is  possible  to  produce  an  approximately  identical  sound  by 
means  of  different  movements,  it  must  also  be  possible  that  the 
motory  sensation  of  any  learner  of  language  may  take  a  different 
shape  from  that  of  the  persons  from  whom  he  learns  it.  For  a 
few  particular  cases  such  deviation  of  the  form  taken  by  motory 
sensation  must  be  conceded  as  possible.  Thus,  for  instance,  the 
dorsal  t  and  s  sounds  are  not  very  different  from  the  alveolar  in 
*H{kdb'oTk^  sound,*although  their  articulation  is  essentially  different.  Lingual 
p^ «,  §  15=  ^jjj  uvular  r  are  still  fairly  easy  to  distinguish,  and  it  seems  that 
in  different  German  dialects  the  one  or  the  other  prevails  all 
through  ;  but  the  transition  of  the  one  into  the  other  can  hardly 
be  explained  in  any  other  way  than  by  the  fact  that  deviating 
utterances  were  not  corrected  because  the  sound-deviations  were 
not  sufficiently  marked. 
Sound-  ig-  There  are  other  sound-changes  which  do  not  depend  upon 

changes  -         j  •       1  t        . 

which  do  not  the  displacement  or  deviating  form  taken  by  the  motory  sensation, 

depend  on  a        i_'i_i  r 

displacement  which,  therefore,  have  to  be  separated  from  sound -change  in  the 

ofAeMotory  1.1  1  .it         .m 

Sensation,     narrower  sense  hitherto  described.     These  changes,  however,  have 
this  much  in  common  with  that,  that  they  proceed  to  their  fulfil- 



ment  without  any  regard  to  the  function  of  the  word.  The  effect 
of  these  processes  is  not  the  change  of  the  elements  of  which 
the  sentence  is  composed,  by  substitution,  but  merely  an  inter- 
change of  these  elements  in  certain  definite  cases.^ 

80.  The   first   of  the  phanges  which  fall  under  this   head   is 

that  of  metathesis.*  Of  this  there  are  two  main  divisions.     The  *//  ?H^a''l 

-"*«i — ..p—  rrinciples  of 

first  of  these  is  when  two  sounds  immediately  following  are  trans-lSSlsyf '^" 
posed,  as  m  the  case  o\  K^.fix  =  OUG. fisc;  first  =  frist ;  trnan  = 
rinnan.  The  second  is  when  two  sounds  not  immediately  follow-  j 
ing  change  their  places;  cf.  the  case  of  OHG.  erila  by  the  side 
oi  elira  =  NHG.  erU  and  eller ;  AS.  weleras,  the  lips,  as  against  the 
Gothic  wairilos ;  OHG.  ezzih,  which  must  have  had  the  sound 
of  *  etik  before  the  sound-shifting  proc'ess  set  in  =  Lat.  acetum ; 
Ital.  dialectically^w/«(?.f(?  =  glorioso  ;  crompare  =  comprare ;  MHG. 
kokodfille  =  crocodilus  \_cokodrilles{Maundevile.J\ 

81.  Under  this  head,  too,  must  be  ranged  assimilations 
between  two  sounds  not  related,  as  Lat.  quinque  from  *pinque ; 
original  German  finfi  (five)  =    ^finhwi,  etc. 

82.  We  more  commonly  find  dissimila.tions  between  two 
similar  sounds  not  in  contact;  cf.  OHG.  turtiltilba,  from  the  Lat. 
turtur ;  marmul,  from  Lat.  marmor ;  MHG.  martel  with  marter, 
from  martyrium ;  przol  with  prior:  and  conversely,  MHG.  pheller 
with  phellel,  from  Lat.  palliolum ;  OHG.  flupbra  'consolation,' 
as  against  OS.  frdfra  and_  AS.  frdforjunG.  kaladrius  with  kara- 
drius  ;  Middle  l^aX.  pelegrinus  itoxa.  peregrinus?' 

83.  Further,  the  falling  out  of  a  single  sound  may  be  regarded 
as  j^similation,  if  this  be  caused  by  the  fact  of  the  same  sound 
occurring   in   its   neighbourhood :  cf.   Greek   Spv^aKTO';   '  wooden 

'  C/.  Brugmann,  Zum  keutigen  Stand  der  Sprachwissemchaft,  p.  50. 

2  Cf.  Bechtel,  Ueber  gegenseitige  Assimilation  und  Dissimilation  der  beiden  Zitter- 
laute.  Gottingen,  1876.  I  cannot,  however,  accept  all  Bechtel's  examples  as  properly 
referred  to  this  head. 


barrier,'  derived  from  ippda-a-a),  and  e/eTroyXo?  from  ttX^o-ctci).  It  is 
just  so  with  the  disappearance  of  an  entire  syllable  occurring  near 
a  similar  one  closing  with   the   same   consonant :    cf.   rifiiBi/ivov, 

br'S^k?''      ^    double    of    •^/MLfieBi/j.vop,    afji,(f>opev<;    of  * a/J,^i<f)opevi,    KeXaive^i]? 

s^rZh-       instead  of*  KsXaivove^ri^  ;  Lat.  semestris  for  *  semimestris. 

/arsch.y^.  i8. 

84.  These  processes  seem  to  admit  of  no  other  explanation  than 
that  they  are  based  upon  repeated  mispronunciations  affecting 
spontaneously  a  considerable  part  of  the  linguistic  community.  It 
is  a  well-known  circumstance  that  in  the  act  of  speaking  the  order 
of  the  words,  syllables,  or  single  sounds  becomes  displaced,  owing 
to  one  element  forcing  itself  prematurely  into  consciousness.  It  is 
equally  well  known  that  of  two  similar  elements  one  is  easily 
dropped.  It  is  further  notoriously  difficult  to  pronounce  with 
accuracy  a  succession  of  similar  and  yet  different  sounds  uttered 
quickly.  It  is  on  this  that  the  joke  depends  about  If  Peter  Piper 
picked  a  peck  of  pickled  pepper,  etc. ;  Round  about  the  rugged  rock 
the  ragged  rascals  ran,  etc.  It  will  also  be  impossible  to  deny  that 
conditions  favourable  to  certain  mispronunciations  exist,  and  that 
hence  these  mispronunciations  occur  in  the  mouths  of  quite 
different  persons,  and  this  repeatedly.  The.,..mispronunciations 
may  then  pass  by  inheritance  as  a  normal  form  to  the  younger 
generation.  These  processes  are  most  easily  understood  when 
they  affect  foreign  words  which  contain  series  of  sounds  repugnant 
t^  the^genius  of  the  language  which  adopts  them.  In  these  cases 
inexact  perception  and  defective  recollection  will  likewise  occur. 
The  phenomena  often  therefore  resemble  those  which  will  be  dis- 
cussed, under  the  head  of  Sound-substitution,  in  Chapter  xxil. 
below.  It  suggests  itself  also  often  for  our  consideration  if  popular 
etymology  is  not  also  at  work  in  producing  them.  Everything 
is  not  yet  clear  in  these  processes. 

85.  We  have  now  to  answer  the  important  question,  which 



has  been  in  recent  times  the  subject  of  so  much  dispute :  Can  Uniformity 

of  the  Law£ 

we  assert  uniformity  in  sound-laws  ?     In  the  first  place,  we  must  of  Sound- 


fully  understand  what  we  mean,  generally  speaking,  by  a  sound- 
law.  The  word  *  law '  is  itself  used  in  very  different  senses,  and 
this  very  fact  induces  errors  in  its  application.^  The  idea  of  sound- 
law  is  not  to  be  understood  in  the  sense  in  which  we  speak  of 
'  laws '  in  Physics  or  Chemistry,  nor  in  the  sense  of  which  we  were 
thinking  when  we  contrasted  exact  sciences  with  historical  sciences. 
Sound-law  does  not  pretend  to  state  what  must  always  under 
certain  general  conditions  regularly  recur,  but  merely  expresses 
the  reign  of  uniformity  within  a  group  of  definite  histoxical 

86.  In  the  statement  of  sound-laws  the  rule  has  been  to  start 
with  a  comparison.  The  circumstances  of  one  dialect  have  been 
compared  with  those  of  another;  those  of  an  older  stage  of 
development  with  those  of  a  more  recent.  Abstractions  have 
been  made  by  comparing  the  relations  of  one  dialect  with  those 
of  another,  those  of  an  older  stage  of  development  with  those  of 
a  later  one.  Sound-laws  have  also  been  formed  by  abstraction 
Dy  comparing  the  different  relations  within  the  same  dialect 
existing  at  the  same  time.  The  rules  commonly  adopted  even 
into  practical  grammars  are  of  the  latter  kind.  Thus,  to  cite 
a  sentence  taken  word  for  word  from  Kruger's  Greek  Gram- 
mar:—A  T-sound,  followed  by  another,  passes  regularly  into  o-. 
.  Examples:  avva-drjvatjrom  avvrca,  epeicrdrivai  from  epeihw,  Tretcr- 
Qriva,.  from  ireiOc^.  It  has  been  before  remarked  that  we  must 
not  allow  ourselves  to  be  led  away  by  such  rules  to  adopt  the 
view  that  the  sound  transitions  in  question  are  each  time 
effected  anew  by  the  creation  of  the  one  form  out  of  the  other. 
The  forms  in  question  which  stand  in  such  a  relation  to  each 
other  are  either  both  taken  up  by  the  memory,  or  one  is  formed 
1  Cf.  L.  Tobler,  Ueber  die  anwendung  des  begr'iffs  von  gesetzcn  auf  die  sprache 
(Vierteljahrsschriftf.  wiss.  phil.,  iii.,  p.  3^  m-J 


from  the  other  by  analogy  (cf.  Chapter  v.).  This  relation  will  be 
designated  not  as  sound-change  {laut-wandel),  but  as  sound-substitu- 
tion {laut-wecksel).  Sound-substitution  is  not  identical  with  sound- 
change,  but  is  merely  an  after-effect  of  it.  Accordingly  we  ought 
I  never  to  apply  the  term  '  sound-law '  to  sound-substitution,  but  only 
'to  sound-change.  A  sound-law  may  no  doubt  reflect  itself  in  the 
effects  left  in  the  conditions  of  any  given  language  as  they  exist 
side  by  side  ;  but  as  a  sound-law  it  never  applies  to  such  language, 
but  invariably  to  a  historical  development  carried  out  in  a  definite 

?,y.  If  we,  therefore,  speak  of  the  uniform  operation  of  sound- 
laws,  this  can  only  mean  that  in  the  case  of  sound-change  occur- 
ring within  the  same  dialect,  all  the  separate  cases,  in  which  the 
same  sound-conditions  occur,  are  treated  uniformly.  It  must 
either  happen,  therefore,  that  where  the  same  sound  existed  pre- 
viously, the  same  sound  always  remains  in  the  later  stages  of 
development  as  well ;  or,  where  a  separation  into  different  sounds 
has  occurred,  there  must  be  a  special  reason  to  be  assigned ; 
and,  further,  a  reason  of  a  kind  affecting  sound  alone — such  as  the 
effect  of  neighbouring  sounds,  accent,  place  of  syllable,  etc. — 
for  the  fact  that  in  one  case  one  sound  has  arisen  and  in  an- 
other a  different  one.  No  doubt  we  must  take  into  account  in 
this  all  the  different  factors  in  the  production  of  sound. 
Especially  we  must  regard  the  word  not  as  isolated,  but  in  the 
light  of  its  place  within  the  sentence  taken  as  a  whole.  Not  till 
then  is  it  possible  to  recognise  the  real  uniformity  of  sound- 

88.  It  is  not  difficult,  after  the  enunciation  of  these  prin- 
ciples, to  show  the  necessity  of  this  uniformity  as  far  as  it  turns 
on  actual  soun^d-change  depending  on  a  gradual  displacement  of 
the  motory  sensation ;  to  speak  more  accurately,  we  should  no 

m-]  ON  SOUND-CHANGE.  59 

doubt  rather  say,  not  '  uniformity,'  but  the  occurrence  of  all  devia- 
tions from  it  within  limits  too  fine  for  our  detection. 

89.  It  must  be  plain  to  every  one  who  acknowledges  in  all 
phenomena  the  operation  of  general  laws,  that  the  process  of  de- 
velopment works  uniformly  to  its  fulfilment.  A  motory  sensation 
does  not  form  itself  specially  for  every  word,  but  in  every  case 
where  the  same  elements  recur  in  language  their  production  is 
guided  by  the  same  sensation.  Should,  then,  the  motory  sensation 
suffer  displacement  by  reason  of  the  pronunciation  of  an  element 
in  any  word,  then  this  displacement  is  also  a  precedent  for  the 
same  element  in  another  word.  Thus  the  pronunciation  of  this 
element  in  the  different  words  vacillates  just  as  much  as  does 
that  of  the  same  word  within  the  same  narrow  limits.  Vacillations 
in  pronunciation  caused  by  quicker  or  slower,  louder  or  gentler, 
more  careful  or  more  negligent  utterance,  will  always  affect  the 
same  element  in  the  same  manner,  in  whatever  word  it  may 
occur,  and  these  must  always  move  in  corresponding  distances 
from  the  normal  or  standard  manner. 

90.  The  development  of  sound-change  in  the  case  of  a  single 
individual  is  always  urged  as  an  objection  against  the  uniform  work- 
ing of  sound-laws.  It  is  maintained  that  our  etymological  con- 
sciousness— our  regard  for  related  forms,  stands  in  the  way  of 
the  operation  of  a  sound-law.  Whoever  maintains  this,  must,  in 
the  first  place,  clearly  understand  that  it  involves  no  denial  of 
the  continuous  activity  of  the  factor  which  impels  to  sound-change 
— only  the  supposition  of  a  factor  of  an  entirely  different  nature 
which  operates  against  this.  It  is  decidedly  not  a  matter  of  indif- 
ference whether  we  assume  that  a  factor  is  at  one  time  operative, 
and  at  another  time  inoperative  ;  or  whether  we  maintain  that  it  is 
under  all  circumstances  operative,  and  that  its  operating  power  is 
counteracted  by  that  of  another  factor.     But  how  are  we  to  con- 


ceive  of  the  chronological  condition  in  the  operation  of  these  factors? 
Do  they  both  operate  simultaneously,  so  that  no  change  occurs,  or 
does  the  one  operate  after  the  other,  so  that  the  operation  of  the 
latter  is  always  cancelled  ?  The  first  alternative  could  only  be 
conceivable  on  the  assumption  that  the  speaker  knew  something 
of  the  threatened  change,  and  sought  to  guard  himself  against  it 
beforehand.  I  think  that  I  have  made  it  sufficiently  clear  that  there 
can  be  no  question  of  this  at  all.  If  we,  however,  allow  that  the 
effect  of  the  factor  of  sound  makes  its  influence  first  felt,  but  is 
then  counteracted  by  the  other  factor,  which  we  shall  have  in  a 
following  chapter  to  characterise  more  closely,  the  uniformity  of 
the  sound-laws  is  hereby  admitted.  We  can  advantageously  dis- 
cuss this  point  at  most :  Whether  it  is  a  rule  that  analogy  asserts 
itself  immediately  after  the  appearance  of  a  very  slight  difference 
between  the  etymologically  connected  forms,  or  that  it  does  not 
show  itself  operative  until  the  contrast  declares  itself  more  un- 
mistakeably.  In  principle,  there  is  no  difference.  That  the 
latter  case  is  however  very  frequent,  we  can  see  by  experience, 
and  we  shall  discuss  it  at  greater  length  later.  But  it  is  in  the 
nature  of  the  case  that  differences  which  are  not  yet  felt  as  such 
cannot  circumscribe  the  feeling  for  etymology,  and  are  not  circum- 
scribed by  this  feeling. 

91.  Equally  inadmissible  is  the  supposition  that  considerations 
as  to  the  clearness  and  intelligibility  of  a  form  stand  in  the  way  of 
a  transition  of  sound.  We  come  sometimes  upon  conditions  which 
seem  to  prove  the  affirmative.  Thus,  for  instance,  in  NGH.  the 
medial  e  of  the  weak  preterites  and  participles  after  t  and  d  is 
maintained  as  in  redete,  rettete,  while  it  is  in  other  cases  rejected. 
But  if  we  revert  to  the  sixteenth  century  we  find  that  double  forms 
are  the  rule  in  every  verb  ;  on  one  hand  we  find  zeigete  by  the 
side  of  zeigte ;  on  the  other,  redte  by  that  of  redete.     Sound-change 


has  thus  made  its  appearance  with  no  consideration  of  utility ; 
and  the  greater  utility  of  one  set  of  forms  has  served  to  guarantee 
merely  their  continued  existence. 

92.  Thus  the  question  can  only  remain  whether  the  communi- 
cation of  the  different  individuals  among  each  other  can  occasion 
breaches  of  uniformity.  This  would  only  be  conceivable  under  the 
supposition  that  the  single  individual  were  to  be  exposed  simul- 
taneously to  the  influence  of  several  groups  of  persons  who  had 
plainly  parted  asunder  owing  to  a  different  system  of  sound- 
development,  and  that  he  learnt  some  words  from  one,  and  others 
from  the  other  group.  This,  however,  presupposes  a  wholly 
exceptional  state  of  things.  Normally  speaking,  there  exist  no 
such  differences  within  the  linguistic  community  within  which  the 
individual  grows  up,  and  with  which  he  stands  in  far  more  intimate 
connexion  than  with  more  distant  associates.  Where  it  does  not 
happen  that,  in  consequence  of  special  historical  causes,  larger 
groups  are  detached  from  their  original  dwelling-place,  and  thrown 
together  with  others  where  the  population  is,  at  most,  modified  by 
slight  accessions  or  departures,  but  remains  constant  as  far  as  its 
main  body  is  concerned,  no  differences  can  be  developed,  which 
are  apprehended  as  such.  Even  if  A  pronounces  a  somewhat 
different  sound  from  B  in  the  corresponding  place,  still  the 
apprehension  of  the  one  sound  as  well  as  that  of  the  other  fades 
into  the  sound-picture  which  the  hearer  already  carries  in  his 
mind;  and  thus  it  follows  again  that  only  the  same  motory 
sensation  can  correspond  with  them.  It  is  absolutely  impossible 
that,  owing  to  two  differences  so  slight,  two  different  motory 
sensations  should  form  in  the  same  individual.  As  a  general  rule 
it  would  be  impossible,  even  supposing  that  the  extremes  which 
occur  within  a  small  linguistic  domain  were  the  only  existing  ones. 
But  even  if  the  hearer  were  in  a  position  to  apprehend  the  differ- 


ence  between  these  two,  still  the  series  of  fine  transition-steps, 
which  he  always  hears  without  any  break,  would  render  it  im- 
possible to  keep  a  frontier  line  unbroken.  And  so,  even  assuming 
that  he  hears  one  word  more  frequently  and  earlier  from  people 
who  tend  to  this  extreme,  and  the  other  more  frequently  and 
earlier  from  people  who  tend  to  the  other  extreme,  still  this  can 
never  produce  the  result  that,  in  his  efforts  to  I'epeat  the  word, 
the  production  of  a  sound  in  one  word  should  be  guided  by  a 
different  motory  sensation  from  the  production  of  a  sound  in  the 
other  word,  if  the  same  individual  would  set  an  identical  sound  in 
both  places. 

93.  Thus  within  the  same  dialect  no  irregularity  develops, 
excepting  either  as  the  result  of  a  mixture  of  dialects,  or,  as  we 
shall  have  to  detail  with  more  accuracy,  as  the  result  of  the 
borrowing  of  a  word  from  a  foreign  dialect.  We  shall  have  later 
to  examine  to  what  extent  and  under  what  conditions  such 
borrowing  appears.  Of  course  in  our  statement  of  sound-laws 
we  do  not  have  to  reckon  with  any  such  apparent  irregularities. 

94.  The  attempts  which  have  been  made  to  explain  sound- 
change  as  dependent  on  individual  caprice  or  on  an  inaccurate  ear 
are  hardly  worth  mentioning.  A  single  inaccuracy  of  ear  cannot 
possibly  have  any  lasting  results  for  the  history  of  language.  If  I 
do  not  accurately  catch  a  word  from  any  one  who  speaks  the  same 
dialect  as  myself,  or  another  with  which  I  am  well  acquainted, 
but  if  I  guess,  his  meaning  from  the  context  of  his  discourse, 
then  I  supply  the  word  in  question  according  to  the  memory- 
picture  which  I  have 'in  my  mind.  If  the  connexion  is  not 
sufficient  to  explain  clearly  the  meaning,  it  may  be  that  I  shall 
supply  a  wrong  meaning,  or  I  may  supply  nothing  at  all,  and 
satisfy  myself  with  understanding  nothing,  or  I  may  ask  again. 
But  how  I  should  come  to  think  that  I  have  heard  a  word  of 


dififerent  sound,  and  still  to  set  this  word  in  the  place  of  the  one  I 
understand,  is  to  me  incomprehensible.  Certainly  it  may  more 
easily  happen  to  a  child  who  has  never  yet  heard  a  particular 
word  to  apprehend  that  word  imperfectly,  and  to  reproduce  it 
again  imperfectly.  But  the  child  will  also  frequently  reproduce 
imperfectly  that  which  it  has  apprehended  more  correctly  because, 
in  its  case,  impulse  is  not  yet  adequately  formed.  Its  apprehen- 
sion, as  its  reproduction,  will  correct  itself,  if  it  always  hears  the 
word  anew ;  if  this  be  not  so,  it  will  forget  it.  Wrong  apprehen- 
sion of  sound  is  only  regularly  seen  when  people  who  belong  to 
different  dialectic  areas  or  different  languages  converse  with  each 
other,  and  the  shape  in  which  foreign  words  are  adopted  is  no 
doubt  much  influenced  by  this  circumstance,  but  certainly  more 
by  the  want  of  motory  sensations  for  the  sounds  which  are  wanting 
to  their  own  dialect. 

95.  There  remain  now  certainly  some  kinds  of  sound-changes 
in  which  uniformity  of  action  cannot  theoretically  be  proved 
necessary.  These,  however,  make  up  a  relatively  small  part  of  the 
entire  sound-changes,  and  they  admit  of  sharp  delimitation.  Thus, 
on  the  one  hand,  we  have  to  reckon  under  this  head  the  cases  in 
which  a  sound  is  imitated  by  means  of  a  deviating  articulation. 
On  the  other  side  we  must  include  the  metatheses,  assimilations, 
and  dissimilations  referred  to  on  p.  5  5,  sq.  For  the  rest,  even  in  this 
case,  we  find  as  a  matter  of  fact,  to  some  extent,  that  regularity  is 
the  rule,  especially  in  the  case  of  the  metathesis  of  .sounds  immedi- 
ately following  each  other,  and  further,  e.g.,  in  the  case  of  the 
dissimilation  of  the  aspirates  in  Gr^ek,  as  in  Kexu^a,  ire^ev^a,  and 

96.  The  question,  as  to  how  far  sound-laws  are  to  be  regarded 
as  admitting  of  no  exceptions,  cannot  be  absolutely  decided  by  the 
materials   of  language   before   us,  because   there  are  changes  in 


language  which,  although  in  their  nature  absolutely  different  from 
sound-change,  still  produce  corresponding  results  with  this.  Thus 
our  question  is  intimately  connected  with  the  second  question : 
How  far  does  the  operation  of  these  other  changes  extend,  and 
how  are  they  to  be  divided  from  sound- change?  Of  this  we  shall 
have  to  treat  below. 




OUND-CHANGE  is  effected  by  repeated  substitution  of  achangeof 
sound  or  sounds  almost  imperceptibly  differing   from   the  consists  in  a 
original.     In  this  process  the  disappearance  of  the  old  is  simul-  narrowing 
taneous  with  the  appearance  of  the  new.      In  the  case  however  of 
change  in  signification,  the  maintenance  of  the  old  is  not  excluded 
by  the  appearance  of  the  new.     It  consists  invariably  in  a  widening 
or  narrowing  of  the  extent  of  the  signification,  corresponding  to 
which  we  find  an  impoverishment  or  an  enrichment  of  the  con- 
tents.    No  signification  absolutely  different  from  the  original  can 
be   formed   but  from  the   successive  processes  of  widening  and 

98.  Change  in  signification,  however,  resembles  sound-change  in  Distinction 
this,  that  it  is  effected  by  a  departure  in  individual  usage  from  the  Ld'Oc^ 
common  usage,  which  departure  passes  only  by  gradual  stages  into  Meanings. 
common  usage.     The  possibility,  we  may  even  say  the  necessity,  of 
change  in  signification,  springs  from  the  circumstance  that  the  sig- 
nification which  attaches  to  a  word  each  time  that  it  is  employed, 
is  not  necessarily  coincident  with  that  which  by  usage  attaches  to  it 
considered  in  itself.    As  it  seems  desirable  to  adopt  distinct  names 
for  this   discrepancy,  we   shall   employ  the   expressions    'usual' 
and  '  occasional '  signification ;  possibly  '  general '  and  '  individual ' 
might  serve  as  well.     We  understand  then  by  '  usual  signification ' 

[1  Cf.  Skeat's  Princ.  of  Eng.  Eiym-..  ch,  i-  §  7 ;  Whitney's  Language  and  the  Study 
of  Language,  ch.  ii.  and  iii.] 


\  the  entire  contents  of  the  conception  bound  up  in  any  given  word 
as  it  presents  itself  to  the  member  of  any  body  of  individuals 
speaking  one  common  language :  by  the  term  '  occasional  signifi- 
cation' we  understand  the  contents  of  the  conception  which  the 
speaker,  in  uttering  the  word,  connects  therewith,  and  which  he 
expects  the  listener  to  connect  with  it  likewise. 
Distinction  99-  The   occasional   signification  is  very  commonly  richer  in 

and'cl"'^  content  than  the  usual  one,  and  narrower  in  extent.  In  the 
Mea'nings.  ^''st  place  the  word  in  its  'occasional'  sense  may  denote  some- 
thing concrete,  while  in  its  'usual'  sense  it  denotes  only  some- 
thing abstract,  i.e.  some  general  conception  under  which  different 
concrete  ones  may  be  ranged.  By  a  'concrete'  conception  I  shall 
be  understood  to  mean  something  pre-supposed  as  really  existing, 
subject  to  definite  limits  of  time  and  space :  by  an  '  abstract '  one 
I  understand  a  general  conception,  the  contents  of  a  mere  idea  and 
nothing  more,  freed  from  all  trammels  of  time  and  place.  This 
distinction  has  accordingly  nothing  to  do  with  the  favourite  division 
of  substantives  into  abstract  and  concrete.  The  substantive  ap- 
pellations which  we  call  '  concrete '  denote  a  conception  no  less 
general  than  the  so-called  abstract  nouns  ;  and,  conversely,  the 
latter  are  occasionally  used  as  concretes,  employed  as  they  are  to 
express  a  single  quality  or  activity  defined  by  limits  of  space  and  time. 
100.  By  far  the  greater  number  of  words  are  capable  of  bearing 
in  occasional  use  abstract  and  concrete  significations  indifferently. 
There  are  indeed  some  which  are  by  their  very  essence  intended  to 
denote  something  concrete,  but  which  still  do  not  refer  to  something 
immediately  and  definitely  concrete,  this  reference  being  given  them 
by  individual  application.  Such  words  as  these  are  the  personal, 
possessive,  and  demonstrative  pronouns,  the  demonstrative  adverbs, 
and  such  words  as  now,  to-day,  yesterday. 

loi.  Words  like  /,  here,  dieser,  serve  no  other  purpose  but  to 



define  some  one's  position  in  the  concrete  world  •}  but  in  them- 
selves they  contain  nothing  delinite,  and  it  requires  the  aid  of 
individualising  elements  to  give  them  such  definiteness.  Then 
take  the  case  of  proper  names.  These  doubtless  denote  a  single 
object  or  person ;  but  seeing  that  the  same  name  may  attach  to 
different  persons  and  different  localities,  the  result  is  that  there 
remains  a  variation  between  occasional  and  usual  signification. 
Finally,  a  small  number  of  words  have  to  be  considered  express- 
ing an  object  regarded  as  existing  once,  and  once  only;  such 
are  God,  devil,  world,  earth,  sun.  These  are  at  the  same  time 
general  and  proper  nouns,  but  only  when  understood  in  a  certain 
way  and  regarded  from  a  definite,  not  from  a  general,  point  of 
view.  Conversely  there  are  some  words  which  from  their  very 
nature  must  be  ranged  with  the  general  and  not  with  the  con- 
crete :  such  are  the  adverbs  and  pronouns — ever,  any ;  the  German 
/e,  irgend;  MHG.  ieman,  dehein;  Lat.  quisquam,  ullus,  unquam, 
uspiam ;  but  the  general  character  even  of  such  words  as  these 
suffers  certain  limitations  in  the  occasional  usage — cf.:  If  he  ever  did 
it  at  all;  If  he  ever  really  shoiilddo  it;  Have  you  been  at  any  trouble  ? 

102.  A   further  and  very  important  difference  between  usual  Plurality  of 


and  occasional  signification  is  the  following.  The  '  usual '  significa- 
tion of  a  word  may  be  various  ;  its  '  occasional '  meaning  is  always  i 
single  except  in  cases  where  ambiguity  is  intentionally  attached  to  I 
the  word,  either  to  deceive,  or  to  point  a  witticism.  Attempts  have 
been  made,  as  by  Steinthal,  Zschr.  f.  volkerpsych.  i.  426 — though 
unsuccessful  we  believe — to  prove  that  there  are  no  such  things 
as  words  with  several  significations.  Under  this  head  must  be 
ranged  first  those  words  which  correspond  in  sound,  but  differ  in 
meaning,  such  correspondence  being  purely  accidental ;    such  is 

1  Even  our  demonstrative  pronouns — and  the  vvord  he—xa&y  be  employed  as 
denoting  abstract  conceptions  :  e.g. ,  T/te  whale  is  a  mammal.  In  German  er  can  be  used 
in  the  same  way,  e.g.^  Er  bringt  lehendige  junge  zur  welt. 


nf'ht^"'^''''^^^  German  acht=diligentia — -proscriptio — octo.*  These  cases  are 
naturally  enough  excluded  by  Steinthal,  who  maintains  that  here 
the  words  in  question  are  not  the  same,  but  different  words.  In 
sound,  however,  they  are  identical,  and  whoever  hears  such  a 
combination  of  sounds  spoken  without  any  connexion  is  power- 
less to  recognise  which  of  the  significations  inherent  in  the 
word  is  in  the  mind  of  the  speaker.  We  thus  have,  if  we  keep 
to  the  actual  state  of  things,  and  add  nothing  which  does  not 
strictly  belong  to  it,  a  word  which  usually  receives  several  signi- 
fications. But  in  the  many  cases  in  which  we  have  identity 
not  merely  of  sounds,  but  of  etymology  as  well,  we  are  driven 
to  recognise  actual  plurality  of  signification.  Take,  for  instance, 
the  word  fuchs  in  modern  High  German.  It  means,  in  the  first 
and  most  common  case,  '  a  fox  ; '  then  '  a  horse  of  foxy  colour ; '  'a 
red-haired  person  ; '  '  a  sly  fellow  ; ',  '  a  gold  coin  ; '  '  a  freshman  at 
college.'  Bock,  a  '  he-goat ; '  bock,  '  the  outside  seat  of  a  coach,'  and 
'  a  mistake ;'  futter, '  food  for  cattle '  and  '  lining ; '  ma/, '  a  spot,' '  a 
token,'  'a  point  of  time ;'  messe,  '  a  mass '  and  '  a  fair ;'  orf,  '  a  place' 
and  'a  shoemaker's  tool;'  rappe,  'a  black  horse'  and  'a  coin;' 
siem,  'a  stone'  and  'a  weight,'  and  'a  disease;'  geschick,  'fate' 
and  'dexterity;'  geschickt,  'sent'  and  'dexterous;'  steuem,  'to 
pilot  a  vessel,'  '  to  pay  taxes,'  and  '  to  hinder ;'  MHG.  beisen, '  to  bait ' 
and  'to  chase  with  a  falcon  ;'  erbeizen, '  to  dismount  from  horseback;' 
weide  '  pasture,' '  chase '  \cf.  in  connexion  with  this  word  anderweit,. 
anderweitig,  evidently  connected  by  the  p6pular  mind  with  weit] ; 
'  fishery,' '  time '  (as  in  anderweide,  '  another  time ') ;  Latin,  exainen, 
'swarm'  and  '  examination.' ^  Steinthal  recognises  the  primary 
signification  in  such  cases  as  the  only  one :  of  those  which  have 
in  the  course  of  history  sprung  from  this  he  denies  the  claim  to 
mdependence.  But  his  view  is  correct  only  as  a  statement  of 
what  exists  at  the  time  when  the  derived  signification  first  springs 
from  the  primary  meaning.  This  state  of  things  is  however  merely 
\}  Cf.  the  list  of  doublets  appended  tc  Skeat's  Etytnologkal  Dictionary.-] 


transitory.  In  most  of  the  cases  cited  above  it  is  impossible  to  re- 
cognise, without  some  historical  knowledge,  the  original  connexion 
between  the  various  significations,  and  these  bear  the  same  relation 
to  each  other,  as  if  the  identity  in  sound  were  purely  accidental. 
This  is  especially  true  when  the  primary  meaning  has  disappeared. 
But  in  many  cases  also  where  the  relationship  of  the  derived  to  the 
primary  signification  is  still  recognisable,  we  cannot  but  acknow- 
ledge the  independence  of  the  former,  especially  in  all  cases  where 
it  has  become  the  '  usual '  one.  There  is  one  sure  criterion  of  these 
cases,  viz.,  whether  a  word  '  occasionally '  used  in  the  derivative 
sense  in  question,  can  be  understood  without  the  aid  of  the 
primary  meaning,  i.e.  without  the  necessity  of  the  primary  mean- 
ing forcing  itself  on  the  consciousness  of  the  speaker  or  hearer. 
There  are  further  two  negative  te^ts  whereby  we  may  judge  that 
a  word  has  not  a  simple  but  a  complex  signification  ;  the  first 
of  these  is  that  no  uniform  definition  can  be  framed  wherein  the ' 
whole  extent  of  the  meaning,  neither  more  nor  less,  can  be  in-' 
eluded  ;  and  the  second  is  that  the  word  cannot,  if  employed  . 
'  occasionally,'  be  used  in  the  whole  extent  of  its  signification.  The 
reader  may  apply  these  tests  to  the  examples  cited  above. 

103.  Even  in  cases  where  the  usual  signification  may  be 
regarded  as  simple,  the  individual  meaning  may  vary  from  this, 
and  still  not  become  concrete,  proceeding  as  it  may  on  one  of 
the  different  bye-meanings  included  in  the  general  conception. 
Thus  the  simple  word  nadel  can  in  single  cases  be  understood  as 
stecknadel,  ndhnadel,  stopfnadel,  stricknadel,  hdkelnadel,  etc. 

104.  All  understanding  between  individuals  reposes  on  the  cor- 
respondence in  their  psychical  attitude.^  For  the  common  under- 
standing of  the  usual  meaning  no  more  correspondence  is  needed 

1  The  following  illustrations  proceed  much  on  the  same  lines  as  the  views  put  forward 
by  Wegener  in  his  book,  Aus  dem  leben  der  sprache ;  and  to  a  certain  extent  resemble 
those  of  Breal,  Les  Mies  latentes  du  Langage  (Paris,  186S). 


than  such  as  naturally  exists  between  all  the  members  of  a  given 
number  of  individuals  who  speak  the  same  language,  assuming 
always  that  they  have  thoroughly  mastered  their  language.  When, 
however,  in  the  'occasional'  use  the  signification  attaching 
to  a  word  is  specialised  and  still  claims  to  be  understood,  such 
claim  can  only  be  based  upon  a  closer  accord  between  the 
speakers.  The  same  words  may  either  be  perfectly  intelligible  or 
unintelligible,  or,  again,  may  be  liable  to  misconception  according 
to  the  frame  of  mind  of  the  person  accosted  and  the  chance 
environment  of  other  circumstances,  according  as  certain  aids 
to  understanding  are  present  or  absent.  These  aids  do  not 
need  to  be  of  linguistic  nature  at  all.  We  must  endeavour 
to  form  a  clear  notion  of  these  in  detail. 
Meansby  10$.  Words    which    propeHy    have    an    abstract    signification 

which  Abs-  ,  , 

tract  Words  may  be  brought  mto  relation  with  something  concrete  by  connect- 
in  their      '  iug  them  with  such  words  as  those  described  (p.  66),  whose  func- 

'  Occasional '...  ,  -iii  .11 

Uses,  a  tion  it  IS  to  express  the  concrete,  more  especially  those  with  the 
Meaning,  article  where  it  is  developed.  But  the  use  of  the  article  has 
generally  developed  in  such  a  way  that  it  is  not  confined  to  the 
function  of  individualising,  but  is  also  attached  to  the  noun  where 
it  expresses  the  general  conception.  Languages  which  have 
developed  no  article  employ  abstract  words  (without  any  special 
mark  of  denotation)  for  the  concrete. 

106.  Whether  the  reference  to  the  concrete  is  expressly 
denoted  or  no,  in  any  case  other  means  must  be  adopted  for  its 
closer  definition.  The  first  of  these  is  the  perception  common  to 
f  the  speaker  and  hearer.  The  latter  recognises  the  fact  that  the 
former  in  speaking  of  tree  or  tozver  means  a  definite  single  tree 
or  tower,  that  is,  assuming  that  they  both  have  before  their  eyes 
the  object  in  question.  The  perception  may  be  supported  and 
defined    by    signs    made    by   the    eyes    or    hands,   or    by    other 


gestures.  Such  signs  as  these  may  likewise  serve  to  point  to 
objects  not  directly  cognisable  by  the  senses,  so  long  as  the 
direction  in  which  they  lie  is  known. 

107.  A  second  method  whereby  the  word  is  made  to  refer  to 
something  definite  and  concrete  is  found  in  the  past  utterances 
of  the  speaker,  or,  it  may  be,  in  his  special  explanation.  If  it 
is  understood  that  a  word  once  bears  a  concrete  sense,  it  is 
possible  that  this  same  sense  may  continue  to  attach  to  the  word 
throughout  the  further  course  of  the  conversation.  In  this  case 
the  remembrance  of  the  previous  utterance  takes  the  place  of 
immediate  perception.  This  reference  to  the  past  can  again  be 
supported  by  the  demonstrative  pronouns  and  adverbs.^  Originally 
employed  to  express  a  certain  perception,  the  transference  of 
their  function  to  denote  previous  utterance  serves  admirably  to 
render  the  individualising  of  the  signification,  intended  by  the 
speaker,  clear  and  intelligible  to  the  hearer. 

108.  In  the  third  place,  we  have  to  take  account  of  the 
special  force  which  may  attach  itself  to  the  representation  of 
anything  concrete,  even  when  this  force  dispenses  with  the  aid 
of  perception  or  mention  of  a  word  previously  used  in  a  par- 
ticular sense.  This  force  may  make  itself  jointly  and  commonly 
felt  in  the  mind  of  the  interlocutors.  Such  agreement  or  cor- 
respondence is  dependent  for  its  existence  on  the  fact  of  common 
residence,  common  age,  common  position,  business,  and  manifold 
common  experiences  of  the  speakers.  An  instance  of  this  is 
seen  in  the  use  of  the  rhetorical  usage  commonly  known  as  /ear' 
k^oxr^v.  Countrymen  talk  of  going  to  town  without  more 
definite  specification,  meaning  thereby  the  town  nearest  to 
where  they  happen  to  live.  Words  like  the  town-hall,  the  market, 
are  used  by  the  inhabitants  of  a  particular  town  for  the  town- 
hall  or  market  of  that  particular  town ;   the  kitchen,  the  dining- 

\}  Cf.  Urbem  quam  dicunt  Romam.— Verg. ,  Ed.  i.,  35.] 


room,  in  the  mouths  of  the  members  of  a  given  family,  refer 
solely  to  the  kitchen  or  dining-room  of  their  particular  house. 
Thus  again,  when  we  speak  of  Sunday  we  mean  the  nearest 
Sunday  to  the  day  on  which  we  happen  to  be  speaking,  and  it 
only  needs  to  be  indicated,  in  order  to  fix  the  Sunday  with  perfect 
accuracy,  whether  the  day  referred  to  is  past  or  future.  Words 
expressing  the  relationship  of  one  person  to  another  are  naturally 
referred  to  persons  who  stand  in  such  relationship  to  the  hearer 
and  to  the  speaker  alike :  and,  further,  the  singular,  in  such 
cases,  is  perfectly  clear,  as  long  as  there  is  only  one  person  who 
could  be  properly  so  described.  Thus  for  the  purposes  of  inter- 
course between  the  sisters  and  brothers  of  a  family,  the  concrete 
reference  of  the  words  father  and  mother  is  sufficiently  intel- 
ligible, as  is  the  employment  of  such  words  as  the  Queen  or  the 
President  to  the  British  or  the  Americans  respectively.  Nay,  even 
in  cases  where  the  relation  exists  on  one  side  only — on  that  of  the 
speaker,  or  on  that  of  the  hearer — it  is  still  possible,  under  the 
influence  of  auxiliary  circumstances,  that  the  reference  should  be 
unmistakeable.  Such  a  question  as  How  is  the  wife  f  may  be  as 
intelligible  as  How  is  your  wife?  If  a  concrete  object  have  once 
at  an  earlier  period  in  any  way  acquired  a  signification  appre- 
hended alike  by  the  speaker  and  the  hearer,  it  can  be  called  into 
consciousness  by  the  word  that  denotes  it.  This  is  especially 
true  if  it  is  still  fresh  in  the  memory,  or  when  a  situation  recurs 
similar  to  that  in  which  the  object  presented  itself,  as  challenging 
special  observation.  Suppose,  for  instance,  that  two  friends  are  out 
walking  together,  and  they  meet  a  lady  previously  unknown  to 
either,  about  whom  they  have  exchanged  remarks.  They  take  the 
same  walk  again,  and  one  asks,  Shall  we  meet  the  lady  again? 
In  this  case  the  reference  in  the  mind  of  the  other  is  clear  and 



109.  In  the  fourth  place,  a  closer  definition  may  be  summoned 
to  the  aid  of  the  speaker.  But  it  is  commonly  found  that  such 
a  definition /£rj£  produces  no  concrete  sense,  but  only  when  used 
concurrently  with  the  other  factors  already  described.  By  means 
of  such  definition  the  word  to  which  the  definition  is  attached 
must  either  have  received  a  reference  to  a  group  of  concrete  objects, 
out  of  which  by  definition  a  further  selection  is  made ;  or  a  con- 
crete reference  must  thereby  be  given  to  the  defining  word.  Both 
processes  may  in  fact  happen  at  once.  Thus  the  epithet  old,  if 
attached  to  duke,  gives  per  se  no  concrete  sense.  But  if  the  facts 
of  the  situation  point  the  reference  to  some  definite  ducal  family, 
the  person  referred  to  is  distinctly  defined.  The  word  casile  gains 
no  concrete  meaning  by  the  addition  of  the  word  royal  or  kin^s 
unless  the  known  facts  have  previously  given  the  word  king  a 
concrete  reference.  But  the  phrase  the  king's  castle  comes  to 
mean  one  object  and  no  more  when  it  can  be  assumed  that  a  single 
castle  of  the  royal  personage  in  question  exists,  or  if  there  are  any 
facts  in  the  situation  which  tend  to  single  out  an  individual ;  for 
instance,  if  any  one  be  referred  to  a  particular  place  in  which  he 
must  necessarily  suppose  the  castle  in  question  to  lie. 

1 10.  Finally,  concrete  sense  spreads  from  one  word  to  others 
placed  in  relation  to  it.  In  sentences  like  John  never  drew  bridle  ; 
I  never  laid  hand  upon  him  ;  I  took  him  by  the  arm ;  You  hit  me 
on  the  shoulder, — the  words  bridle  and  hand  gain  a  concrete 
meaning  owing  to  the  subject,  and  arm:  and  shoulder  owing  to 
the  object. 

111.  In  the  same  way  as  general  names  receive  a  definite 
concrete  reference,  proper  names  which  belong  to  different  indi- 
viduals come  to  denote  but  one.  The  simple  appellation  Charles 
is  sufficient  to  identify  an  individual,  supposing  that  he  is  in  our 
presence,   or    that  we    have    recently   mentioned    him.      He    is 


sufficiently  identified  then,  even  apart  from  thiSj  within  the  circle 
of  his  family,  or  of  a  small  body  of  acquaintances  who  have  no 
other  Charles  within  their  body.  Under  other  circumstances  we 
define  him  more  closely — e.g. :  Charles  the  Sixth  of  France — 
Charles  the  First  of  England.  In  the  same  way  the  same  name 
is  given  to  many  places ;  but  one  name  is  sufficient  to  define  it 
for  the  whole  neighbourhood,  and  even  for  larger  circles  when 
the  place  meant  is  by  far  the  most  important  of  all  the  places 
bearing  the  same  name  (such  as  Melbourne,  London,  Strass- 
burg) :  otherwise  a  nearer  definition  has  to  be  used,  as  Stony 
Stratford,  Newton-le-willows. 

112.  The  same  factors  which  serve  to  impart  to  a  word  a 
concrete  reference  serve  equally  to  specialise  its  signification.  On 
.hearing  a  word,  the  natural  tendency  is  to  think  of  the  most  ordi- 
nary of  its  various  significations,  or  of  its  primary  one.  These 
tendencies  frequently  coincide.  Where,  however,  it  happens  that 
several  meanings,  each  tolerably  common,  stand  side  by  side,  it 
will  be  found  that  the  primary  meaning  will  present  itself  to  con- 
sciousness before  those  derived  from  it ;  and  this  will  often  be 
found  true  where  the  derived  meaning  is  in  the  more  common 
use.  This  is  in  accordance  with  an  ordinary  psychological  law. 
But  the  matter  is  at  once  different  if  certain  groups  of  ideas  are 
awakened  in  the  mind  of  the  hearer  before  the  word  is  uttered, 
or  will  be  awakened  simultaneously  with  its  utterance,  ideas  which 
are  more  closely  connected  with  a  derived  or  comparatively  un- 
usual meaning.  It  makes  a  great  difference  whether  I  hear  the 
word  sheet  in  a  haberdasher's  shop,  or  on  a  yacht,  or  at  a 
publisher's ;  as  it  does  if  I  hear  the  words  to  bind  at  a  book- 
seller's, or  in  a  harvest-field.  When  different  men  of  different 
trades  and  professions— as  joiners,  gamekeepers,  medical  men — 
meet  and  converse,  they  are  given  to  apprehend  each  word  as 


it  comes  most  nearly  home  to  their  profession.  The  connexion 
in  which  a  word  occurs  is  of  great  importance.  By  means  of 
such  connexion  the  different  possibilities  of  the  apprehension  of 
a  word  are  minimised.  Take  such  instances  as  a  good  point,  a 
point  of  view,  a  point  of  honour ;  the  bar  of  an  hotel,  the  bar  of 
justice;  the  foot  of  a  mountain,  the  foot  of  the  table;  the  tongue 
of  a  woman,  the  tongue  of  a  balance;  a  well-attended  ball,  a 
football  club  ;  a  bay  and  a  grey;  the  cock  is  turned  on  ;  it  costs  a 
crown;  the  train  starts,  a  train  of  thought;  a  clear  voice,  a  clear 
day;  clean  linen,  a  clean  heart;  John  is  a  donkey;  the  money 
goes,  the  milk  goes ;   to  stand  still,  to  stand  upon  ceremony,  to  stand 

-  ^  *  Substituted 

at  ease'  by  Trans-. 


113.  In  the  cases  we  have  mentioned  the  variation  of  the  occa-  The 
sional  meaning  from  the  usual  one  consisted  in  the  fact  that  the  Meaning 
former  contained  all  the  elements  of  the  latter,  and  at  the  same  necessarily 
time  something  beyond.      There  are,  however,  cases  where  the  Iheeie^ems 
occasional  meaning  does  not  contain  all  the  elements  of  the  usual  °usu°ar 


meaning,  while  it  still  may  contain  something  which  does  not, 
strictly  speaking,  belong  to  the  latter.  The  fundamental  condition 
for  the  possibility  of  such  partial  utilisation  of  the  usual  significa- 
tion of  a  word  is  given  most  ordinarily  by  the  fact  that  the  word 
is  in  most  cases  made  up  of  different  elements  which  may  be 
separated.  Any  idea  of  any  substance  must  necessarily  com- 
prehend the  idea  of  several  characteristics.  But  there  are  also 
many  ideas  of  qualities  and  activities  possible  to  designate  by 
a  single  word,  which  are  likewise  compound.  For  instance,  the 
names  of  colours  denote  (of  course  speaking  from  a  psychological 
point  of  view)  perfectly  simple  qualities ;  blue,  red,  yellow,  white,  t^^^^?J;_ 
black,  f  And  even  these  may  well  be  employed  to  denote  qualities  *•"■ 
which,  according  to  their  proper  meaning,  are  not  fully  adequate. 
For  each  colour  may,  of  course,  be  mixed  with  each  other  colour 


at  will ;  and  thus  there  arises  an  infinite  number  of  transition  stages 

which  cannot  possibly  each  receive  a  definite  name.    And  the  result 

is  that  we  are  content  to  leave  unimportant  admixtures  without  any 

name,  so  that  the  limit  within  which  a  name  expressive  of  colour 

is  applicable  remains  uncertain  and  shifting.     But  a  much  wider 

room  for  inadequate  application  is  given  us  by  words  whose  sig^i- 

\V-  ^f.^  fication  consists  in  a  complex  assembly  of  ideas.* 

dfftr'  114.   Such,  among  others,  are  all  so-called  metaphorical  ex- 

/       pressions.     We  are  accustomed  to  say  that,  for  a  comparison  to 

be   made,  there   must   necessarily  be,   besides   the    two    objects 

compared,  a  tertium  comparationis,  or   third   object  with   which 

they  are  compared.      But  this  tertium  is  nothing  new,  nothing 

added  to  what  we  have  already,  but  it  is  that  part  of  the  contents 

of  the  two  combinations  (groups)  of  ideas  compared  with  each 

other  which  they  have  in  common.     If  we  say  of  a  man  he  is 

.  like  a  fox,  we  do  not  identify  the  two  qualities  as  in  the  case  of 

a  mathematical  equation ;  nothing  more  is  meant  than  this,  that 

one  of  the  characteristic  qualities  of  which  the  conception  'fox' 

is  made  up  is  likewise  implied  in  the  idea  that  we  have  of  this 

particular  man  :   i.e.  as  a  rule,  of  his  craftiness.     And  so  we  are 

able  to  speak  more  accurately  by  expressing  the  tertium  as  well — 

He  is  as  sly  as  a  fox.     On  the  other  hand,  we  can  say  even  more 

simply  he   is  foxy,   in   which  case  again   the  adjective  does   not 

indicate  the  full  extent  of  all  the  qualities  of  a  fox,  but  only  a 

selection  of  these ;   and  lastly,  simplest  of  all,  we  can  say  he  is 

a  fox. 

Transference        I  IS-  There  IS  another  possibility  which  enables  a  word  to  pass 

Spatially,      beyoud   the   limits   of  its   own   proper   signification ;    i.e.  into  a 

Temporally,  .  .  .....  ,  .  ,         ., 

or  Causally  usagc  agam  ot  course  m  its  orio-m  purely  occasional.  It  consists 
wlhX°  in  this,  that  something  which  is  according  to  ordinary  experience 
denotation.    Connected  with  the  usual  contents  by  relations  of  space,  or  time,  or 



cause,  is  understood  together  with  the  word,  or,  it  may  be,  under- 
stood alone,  when  the  word  is  uttered.  Under  this  head  falls  the 
figure  of  speech  known  in  Latin  treatises  on  style  as  pars  pro  toto 
[as  where  trabs  or,  again,  carina  stands  for  '  a  ship ']. 

1 1 6.  On  each  occasion  when  the  word  oversteps  the  limits  of 
its  usual  signification,  a  directing  impulse  must  lend  its  aid — that 
is,  if  the  reference  is  to  be  rightly  understood.  Such  an  impulse 
is  in  this  case  more  necessary  than  where  nothing  further  is 
required  than  to  ascertain  which  of  several  significations  already 
recognised  as  usual  is  intended  {cf.  above,  pp.  74-S).  We  never 
feel  ourselves  impelled  to  understand  a  word  in  a  sense  which 
does  not  include  all  the  elements  of  its  usual  meaning,  as  long 
as  we  are  not  reminded  by  something  that  such  a  sense  is  im- 
possible. It  becomes  then  a  matter  of  necessity  if  we  would 
arrive  at  the  right  sense,  that  this  reminder  should  set  us  on 
some  positive  right  track.  In  such  proverbs  as  Speech  is  silvern, 
but  silence  is  golden,  we  should  not  think  of  the  predicates  as 
used  metaphorically,  if  they  could  be  understood  as  connected 
with  their  subjects  in  their  proper  sense.  When  Shakespeare 
talks  about  the  'majesty  of  buried  Denmark,'  we  guess  from  the 
combination  of  majesty,  buried,  and  Denmark,  the  right  sense  which 
we  are  to  attach  to  each.^ 

117.  These  departures  of  the  occasional  meanings  from  the  change    , 

.  .  of  Usage    i 

usual  meanine  are  starting-points  for  true  change  of  signification,  effected  b/ 

o  <^  ^  <  Occasional' 

As  soon  as  these  departures  repeat  themselves  with  a  certain  regu-  Modification. 

larity,  what  was  individual   and  momentary  becomes  gradually 

generic  and  usual.     The  border  line  between  what  constitutes  the 

occasional  and  usual  signification  of  a  word  is  shifting.     In  each 

individual  case  the  beginning  of  the  transition  from  an  occasional 

to  a  usual  meaning  is  made  as  soon  as,  on  the  employment  or 

apprehension  of  the  former,  the  recollection  of  an  earlier  employ- 

1  In  this  again,  and  in  similar  cases,  a  substitute  has  been  employed  for  Professor 
Paul's  German  instances. 


ment  or  apprehension  comes  into  play:  the  full  transition  may- 
be deemed  accomplished  as  soon  as  such  recollection  only  is 
effective,  and  when  employment  and  apprehension  alike  follow,  with- 
out any  reference  to  the  usual  signification  of  the  word.  Between 
these  two  we  may  have  a  manifold  gradation.  Within  the  circle 
of  friends  who  hold  inter-communication,  the  different  individuals 
who  compose  it  may  find  themselves  at  different  stages  in  this 
transition  process.  It  is  quite  impossible  for  the  process  to 
run  its  natural  course  in  an  individual,  while  his  interlocutors  re- 
main totally  unaffected  by  its  influence.  For  we  must  observe  that 
the  essence  of  the  process  is  that  it  should  pass  to  its  fulfilment  by 
repeated  and  regular  employment  of  a  signification  which  in  its 
commencement  was  but  occasional,  and  this  must  pre-suppose 
an  apprehension  on  the  part  of  a  portion  of  the  interlocutors; 
and  this  apprehension  is,  for  these  again  at  least,  a  commence- 
ment of  the  process.  The  process  will,  however,  in  the  case  of 
one  individual,  not  easily  pass  to  its  fulfilment,  unless  the  influence 
which  he  exercises  on  his  associates  is  reciprocated  by  these. 
Such  reciprocal  action  will  of  course  most  readily  arise  where  there 
is  not  only  external  influence  at  work,  but  where  a  spontaneous 
impulse  exists  to  employ  the  word  in  the  same  occasional  sense 
as  it  naturally  adopts  from  the  common  mutual  relations  of  the  in- 
dividuals. One  of  the  most  powerful  efficients  in  the  change  from 
an  occasional  meaning  into  a  usual  one  is  the  first  tradition  tq_a 
new  generation.  The  process  of  learning  the  meaning  of  words  is 
not  commonly  assisted  by  any  definition  by  whose  aid  the  usual 
signification  is  specified  in  its  contents  and  full  extent ;  such  defin- 
ing process  is  in  fact  an  impossibility  until  a  fair  knowledge  of 
language  is  acquired,  and  must  be  considered  even  then  excep- 
tional. A  child  learns  only  occasional  applications  of  a  word,  and, 
what  is  more,  learns  in  the  first  place  nothing   but  its  relations 



to  a  concrete  object.  In  spite  of  this  the  child,  when  once 
it  has  acquired  the  application  of  the  word,  begins  at  once  to 
generalise  it.  And  this  is  quite  natural.  The  reference  to  the 
single  concrete  object  cannot  in  any  case  be  permanent.  For 
the  mental  impression  left  by  such  object  contains  in  itself 
nothing  whereby,  on  a  new  cognition  of  the  object  in  question, 
its  actual  identity  or  non-identity  with  the  object  once  taken 
cognisance  of,  can  be  recognised.  The  right  appreciation  of  such 
object  depends  on  a  succession  of  conclusions  drawn  from  a  suc- 
cession of  instances,  and  cannot  be  gained  without  this  process 
— nay,  in  many  cases  cannot  be  gained  at  all.  In  the  simple 
and  unreasoning  mind  of  childhood  agreement  in  the  contents 
of  the  idea  presented  suffices  to  warrant  an  identification  on 
his  part,  and  this  whether  real  identity  exists  or  not.  And 
further,  such  agreement  needs  to  be  partial  only — indeed  under 
some  circumstances  merely  trivial — to  cause  this  identification  ; 
— that  is,  as  long  as  the  mental  impression  is  still  vague  and 
confused.  Thus  it  is  that  from  the  very  commencement  of 
the  process  of  acquiring  language,  the  custom  grows  of  defining 
by  the  same  word,  not  merely  a  single  object  but  several — not 
merely  objects  which  actually  resemble  each  other,  but  such 
as  bear  even  a  remote  resemblance.  And  this  custom  maintains 
its  ground,  even  when  differences,  disregarded  previously,  are 
noticed,  since  it  is  strengthened  and  supported  by  the  example 
of  adults.  But  this  procedure  implies  at  once  that  no  clear 
conception  can  exist  of  the  contents  and  extent  of  the  usual 
meaning.  The  child  makes  numerous  mistakes  from  the  fact  that 
it  connects  with  the  word  a  conception  sometimes  too  wide,  some- 
times too  narrow,  and  attaches  to  it  an  application  correspond- 
ingly too  narrow  or  too  wide.  He  will  more  commonly  err  on 
the  side  of  width  than  of  narrowness  of  application,  and  the  more 


so  according  as  his  stock  of  words  is  more  limited.  A  child  will 
include  a  sofa  under  the  name  of  a  chair,  an  umbrella  under  that 
of  a  stick,  a  cap  under  that  of  a  ^a^/— and  this  repeatedly. 
Another  impulse  to  inexact  appreciation  of  meaning  proceeds 
from  the  fact  that  the  objects  indicated  are  frequently  parts  of 
a  larger^  whole,  or  are  indissolubly  connected  with  other  objects 
in  the  speaker's  mind.  In  this  case  the  child  cannot  but  be  un- 
certain how  the  part  which  the  word  is  intended  to  define,  when 
eliminated  from  the  whole  idea,  should  be  limited.  It  will  draw 
these  limits  now  wider,  now  narrower,  than  use  demands  ;  not 
unfrequently  omitting  what  of  right  belongs  to  the  meaning, 
and  including  what  does  not  so  belong.  Besides,  the  process  of 
learning  new  words  and  new  methods  of  applying  old  ones  is  far 
from  confined  to  early  childhood.  Expressions  of  rare  occurrence, 
or  which  denote  complex  ideas,  or  which  pre-suppose  a  high  or  a 
special  standard  of  culture,  have  to  be  mastered  by  the  adult  no 
less  than  by  the  child  ;  and  supposing  that  he  learns  them  merely 
in  their  occasional  application,  he  is  exposed  to  the  same  errors  as 
the  child.  All  these  inaccuracies  in  the  apprehension  of  the  usual 
meaning  are,  taken  singly,  of  no  account,  and  are,  as  a  rule,  cured 
by  time.  Yet  it  cannot  but  be  that  in  particular  instances  the 
union  of  a  large  number  of  individuals  in  the  same  misapprehen- 
sion, leaves  behind  it  lasting  traces.  We  shall  thus  have  to  recog- 
nise a  kind  of  change  of  meaning  depending  on  the  fact  that  for 
the  meaning  which  among  the  elder  generation  is  usual,  a  meaning 
only  partially  corresponding  with  it  is  substituted.  But  we  shall 
have  to  confine  the  area  of  this  change  to  the  rarer  kinds  of  con- 
ceptions which  more  easily  defy  exact  determination,  as,  in  the 
case  of  others,  a  gradual  process  of  correction  in  accordance  with 
actual  use  cannot  fail  to  ensue. 

Ii8.  In  most  cases  the  impulse  to  change  of  meaning  proceeds 


from  the  elder  generation  which  holds  already  complete  control  of 
usage.  But  the  younger  generation  has  likewise  a  special  share  in 
forwarding  the  process,  from  the  fact  that  the  different  applications 
of  a  word  group  themselves  from  the  very  outset  somewhat  differ- 
ently from  the  way  in  which  they  group  themselves  in  the  case  of 
the  older  generation.  Each  method  of  application,  apprehended 
as  it  is  for  each  immediate  case,  may  be  mastered  for  itself  with- 
out regard  to  other  possible  ones ;  and  hence  each  may  receive  a 
greater  degree  of  independence  than  it  enjoyed  in  the  minds  of  the 
older  generation.  The  derived  is  often  learnt  before  the  primary  > 
meaning :  and  this  fact  contributes  not  a  little  to  fixing  its  inde- 
pendence. A  child  may  for  instance  often  hear  a  horse  spoken 
of  as  a  bay,  or  a  stupid  fellow  as  an  ass.  In  such  cases  the 
primary  meaning  is  from  the  very  outset  dispensed  with  as  an 
aid  to  right  comprehension.  Until  an  individual  has  fully  mastered 
the  usage  of  a  word,  he  is  not  often  qualified  to  distinguish  whether 
a  particular  manner  of  application  which  comes  before  him  is 
usual  or  merely  occasional,  and  will  thus  be  inclined  to  adopt  the 
occasional  meaning, — if  circumstances  have  strongly  impressed  that 
meaning  on  his  mind — not  less  readily  than  the  usual  one. 

119.  Seeing  that  the  change  in  the  usual   signification  takes  classification 
its  rise  from  modifications  in  the  occasional  application,  we  find  of  Meaning: 
in  both  cases  the  same  kinds  of  change.*  The  first  and  main  sition. 
kind,  accordingly,  is  specialisation  of  the  meaning  by  narrowing  connotation. 

*  Cf.  Wliit- 

the  comprehension  of  the  word,  and  the  enriching  of  its  contents,  ney,' p.  loej 

ut  sup. 

The  German  word  schirm  is  an  instructive  instance  of  the  differ- 
ence between  occasional  and  usual  specialisation.  The  word  can 
be  used  of  any  object  employed  as  a  '  screen.'  In  the  occasional 
usage  it  may  signify  a  '  fire-screen,'  or  '  lamp-screen ; '  a  '  screen ' 
for  the  eyes,  an  'umbrella,'  a  'parasol,'  etc.  But  while  it  is 
only  by  some  definite  situation  that  we  are  led  to  think  of  the 



word  as  'fire-screen'  or  'lamp-screen,'  it  immediately  occurs  to 
us  to  conceive  of  it  as  '  umbrella '  (regen-sckirni),  or  '  parasol ' 
{sonnen-schirm),  and  we  then  think  less  of  the  ordinary  function  of 
'  screening '  than  of  an  object  of  special  shape  and  construction; 
Thus  we  must  perforce  acknowledge  that  this  meaning  has  dis- 
severed itself  from  the  more  general  meanings,  and  stands  as  a 
special  and  independent  one ;  and  it  matters  not  whether  it  can 
logically  be  ranged  under  them  or  not.  For  this  logical  subordina- 
tion is  only  possible  by  discarding  factors  not  less  essential  to  the 
meaning  than  what  we  immediately  have  in  view.  Other  examples 
are  the  use  of  frumentum  for  '  corn  '  in  Latin,  of  fruit  for  the  pro- 
duce of  certain  trees  as  compared  with  '  the  fruits  of  the  earth ; ' 
corn  in  English  is  restricted  to  wheat,  while  in  German  korn  denotes 
any  species  of  grain ;  dach  was  used  in  MHG.  for  any  kind  of 
covering ;  it  is  now  restricted  to  the  covering  of  a  house  [fowl  in 
English  means  specially  a  '  barn-door  fowl '].  And  a  special 
usage  of  this  kind  is  seen  in  the  names  of  materials  used  for  pro- 
ducts of  materials — as  glass,  horn,  gold,  silver,  copper,  paper,  as 
when  we  talk  of  paper  money,  etc.  It  is  the  business  of  the 
lexicographer  to  distinguish,  in  the  enumeration  of  the  special 
usages  of  a  word,  between  such  as  have  become  usual  and  such  as 
ch^"'li^K^/'  ^""^  purely  occasional :  a  distinction  which  is  commonly  neglected.* 
"'^'  1 20.  Proper  names   take   their  rise   from  the  change   of  the 

occasional  concrete  meaning  of  certain  words  into  usual  meanings. 
All  names  of  persons  and  places  took  their  origin  from  names 
of  species  ;  and  the  usage  Korr  i^o'^ijv  forms  the  starting-point  for 
this  process.  We  are  able  to  watch  this  process  distinctly  in 
numerous  instances  of  place-names.  Such  commonly  recurring 
appellations  are  especially  instructive,  as  the  following : — Field, 
Hill,  Bridge,  Townsend,  Hedges,  Church,  Stone,  Meadows,  Newton, 
Villeneuve,  Newcastle,  Neucliatel,  Neuburg,  Milltown,  etc.     Such 


appellations  served,  in  the  first  instance,  merely  to  indicate  to 
dwellers  in  the  vicinity  the  person  or  town  tq  be  indicated ;  and 
they  were  sufficient  to  distinguish  the  persons  or  places  intended 
from  others  in  the  immediate  neighbourhood.  They  passed  into  un- 
mistakable proper  names  from  the  moment  when  they  were  adopted 
and  apprehended  by  more  distant  neighbours  in  this  concrete 
sense ;  or  when  they  were  more  sharply  divided  from  the  names 
of  species  originally  identical  with  them,  by  agencies  which  isolated 
them  still  further.  No  doubt  there  are  besides  these  a  large  class 
of  names  of  places,  which  in  their  origin  approach  the  nature 
of  strict  proper  names,  derived  as  they  manifestly  are  from  the 
names  of  persons,  or  at  least  influenced  by  personal  names. 

121.  There  is  one  particular  specialising  process  which  be- 
gins to  operate  directly  the  word  is  employed.  This  is  especi- 
ally found  in  the  case  of  words  which  can  be  derived  at  will 
from  other  words  in  common  use  according  to  the  laws  of 
any  language,  but  which  do  not  come  into  actual  use  until  a 
special  need  calls  them  into  play.  Such  words  as  these  are  often 
only  to  be  referred  from  the  first  stage  in  their  career  to  the  root- 
word,  with  a  more  special  meaning  than  the  derivative  per  se 
expresses.  Thus  the  substantive  formations  in  er,  MHG.  czre, 
coming  from  other  substantives  in  English  and  German,  denote 
properly  a  person  who  stands  in  some  relation  to  the  idea  of  the 
root-word,  of  whatever  kind  this  relation  may  be  ;  but  in  the  case 
of  single  words  thus  terminated  the  most  varied  instances  of 
specialisation  are  seen.  In  the  case  of  the  MHG.  cehtczre,  from 
dhte  (NHG.  acht,  'persecution'),  the  word  denotes  alike  the  'pur- 
suer '  and  the  '  pursued ; '  but  in  the  individual  application  the 
two  can  never  be  understood  together.  In  the  case  of  scholar 
(Latin  scholaris)  the  idea  of  '  schoolmaster '  might  well  have  been 
included,  but  there  is  no  trace   of  the  word  ever  having   been 


employed  in  that  sense,  or  in  any  other  sense  than  that  which  it 
bears  to-day.  [Similarly  a  poulterer  is  never  used  otherwise  than 
in  the  sense  of  a  vendor  of  poultry ;  a  fisher  always  denotes  one 
who  tries  to  catch  fish ;  a  burgher,  the  dweller  in  a  burgh  (or 
borough) ;  3.  falconer,  one  who  keeps  falcons  for  the  chase ;  while  a 
pensioner  denotes  one  who  receives  a  pension.]  It  is  the  same 
with  verbs  like  the  German  bechern,  buttern,  haaren,  hausen,  herzen, 
kopfen,  mauern,  etc.  In  the  case  of  many  words  we  are  not  in  a 
position  to  decide  whether  an  application  in  a  more  general  sense 
has  preceded  or  not.  This  original  specialisation  must,  of  course, 
be  itself  in  the  ftrst  instance  only  an  occasional  one,  seeing  that 
the  word,  as  such,  only  points  to  the  general  idea  evolved  by  the 
combination  of  the  root-word  with  the  derivative  suffix,  and  it  is 
the  common  situation  of  the  speaker  and  hearer  which  adds,  for 
the  first  time,  anything  to  the  range  of  the  meaning.  It  is,  in 
this  case  also,  only  gradually  that  the  usage  can  be  formed,  and 
according  to  the  general  fundamental  necessary  conditions  of 
2.  Limita-  122.  In  every  case  where  the  need  of  denoting  a  conception 

part  of  the    hitherto   undenoted  makes  itself  felt,  one  of  the   most  obvious 

original  ... 

Connotation,  expedients  is  to  choose  a  word  easily  formed,  expressive  of  an 
important  part  of  the  contents  of  a  conception ;  in  fact,  some 
prominent  characteristic.  Etymology  teaches  us  that  many  sub- 
stantives have  thus  proceeded  from  the  appellations  of  more 
simple  qualities.  But  the  conclusion  is  certainly  not  warranted 
that  all  substantives  took  their  origin  in  this  way — for  example, 
that  all  are  necessarily  derived  from  verbs. 

123.  The  second  main  kind  of  change  in  signification — a 
change  contrasting  with  the  former — is  its  reduction  to  one  part  of 
the  original  contents  ;  though  commonly  such  reduction  is  accom- 
panied by  amplification   on   another   side.     It  is  hardly  possible 



to  reduce  the  great  mass  of  phenomena  occurring  under  this 
head  into  definite  groups.  A  few  of  marked  peculiarity  may  be 
however  mentioned.  In  many  cases  the  appearance  presented  to 
the  eye  gives  the  motive  to  the  appellation,  e.g.,  in  the  case  of  the 
eye  of  a  potato  ;  the  head  or  heart  of  a  cabbage,  the  arm  of  a  river, 
the  cup  of  a  flower.  A  statue  or  a  picture  is  named  directly  after 
what  it  represents,  as  an  Apollo,  a  Laocoon,  the  Adoration  of  the 
Magi.  We  call  a  part  of  one  object  after  the  part  of  another  object 
which  by  its  position  corresponds  with  it ;  for  instance,  we  talk  of 
the  neck  or  belly  of  a  bottle,  the  shoulder  of  a  mountain,  the  foot 
of  a  mountain,  the  tail  of  a  kite  ;  we  call  a  measure  by  the  name 
of  some  object  which  has  a  size,  or  length,  or  breadth  in  some 
measure  corresponding,  as  a  cubit,  an  ell,  a  foot.  The  correspond- 
ence of  the  function  fixes  the  name  in  the  German  word  feder 
for  •  steel  pen.'*  The  analogy  between  place  and  time  renders  it^'  'J^  ''■•• 
possible  that  we  should  transfer  expressions  formed  to  express 
ideas  of  conceptions  of  time  to  those  of  place ;  e.g.,  long  and  short ; 
before,  after ;  behind,  and  numerous  other  adverbs  and  prepositions. 
The  analogy  between  different  modes  of  sense-perception  renders 
possible  the  transference  of  the  impression  made  on  one  sense  to 
that  made  on  another :  take  such  instances  as  sweet,  beautiful, 
clear  (originally  applicable  to  hearing  alone),  and  the  Latin  clarus 
(originally  applicable  to  the  sense  of  sight  alone).  The  words 
used  to  denote  sensual  and  corporeal  ideas  are  transferred  to 
spiritual  and  intellectual  [as  in  such  cases  as  apprehension,  re- 
flection— nay,  the  word  spirit  itself,  and  the  Latin  animd\^  Take  L'jf  cK", 
also  such  words  as  to  feel,  to  see,  sweet,  bitter,  lovely,  taste,  dirty, 
great,  small,  lofty,  low,  warm,  fire,  to  sting,  to  thrill,  etc.  Words 
again  which,  strictly  speaking,  denote  one  species  only,  are  con- 
verted into  symbols  denoting  a  wider  extension,  as  cat,  crab,  apple, 
rose.     By  confining  ourselves  to  one  prominent  characteristic,  we 


may  make  proper  names  pass  into  class  names,  as  when  we  talk 
of  a  man  as  a  Cicero,  an  Agafnemnon,  a  Cato  ;  and  we  have  such 
further  developments  as  a  cannibal,  a  vandal ;  Tom,  Dick,  and 
Harry  ;  John  Doe  and  Richard  Roe.  Such  adjectives  as  romantic, 
Gothic,  etc.,  may  also  serve  as  illustrations  of  the  development.^ 
3.  Trans-  124.  The  third  main  head  of  change  in  meaning  is  the  trans- 

f^rcncc  to 

things         ference  of  the  idea  to  what  is  connected  with  the  fundamental 
Temporally,  conception  by  local,  temporal,  or  causal  relations.^ 
Ssociatcd.''  125.  The  simplest  subdivision  of  this  is  where  a  part  is  sub- 

stituted for  the  whole.  The  part  is  in  such  cases  always  a 
prominent  characteristic,  and  is  only  as  such  capable  of  denoting 
the  whole.  Take  such  instances  as  bow,  blade,  fleche,  and  the 
MHG.  rant  (nhg.  rand),  'rim,'  used  in  epic  poetry  for  shield. 
Persons  and  animals  are  often  named  after  characteristic  parts 
of  the  body  and  mind :  as  grey -beard,  curly-head,  thick-head; 
red-breast,  fire-tail ;  a  good  soul,  a  bright  spirit ;  in  French, 
blanc-bec,  grosse-t^te,  rouge-gorge,  rouge-queue,  pied-plat,  gorge- 
blanche,  mille-pieds ;  esprit  fort,  bel  esprit.  Similar  to  this 
usage  is  the  application  of  names  for  objects  commonly  found 
in  connexion  with  others  instead  of  those  with  which  they  are 
connected.  Such  are  names  taken  from  garments,  as  blue- 
stocking, green  domino,  a  red-coat,  a  blue-jacket.  There  are 
other  appellations  which  are  transferred  from  one  object  to  that 
included  or  contained  within  it,  such  as  '  the  town '  in  such  cases 
as  the  talk  of  the  town ;  the  Cabinet,  the  Church,  the  Court,  etc. 
Conversely  we  find  a  transference  of  the  idea  from  the  object  to 
its  surroundings,  as  in  the  Round  Table,  the  Porch,  the  Moun- 
tain. Very  commonly  it  happens  that  the  name  of  a  quality  is 
transferred  to  the  person  or  thing  possessing  the  quality,  as  in 
age,  youth;  plenty,  plain,  desert,  bitters:  in  German  a  quantity 
of  words  in  -schaft,  as  mannschaft,  verwandtschaft  [a  termination 

1  Cf.  Darmesteter's  Life  of  Words,  p.  48,  sqq.;   Whitney's  Life  and  Growth  of 
Language,  ch.  vii.  and  viii. 

"  Cf.  such  adjectives  as  frank,  sterliner. 


answering  to  -ship  in  English ;  and  the  usage  may  be  paralleled 
by  such  expressions  as  his  worship  in  speaking  of  a  magistrate.] 
There  are  others  in  -head,  originally  denoting  condition,  as  God- 
head;  but  there  are  many  more  instances  in  German  of  words 
ending  in  -heit  or  -keit,  which  are  similarly  employed,  such  as 
christenheit,  mehrheit,  neuigkeit ;  and  the  use  of  titles  generally, 
such  as,  your  highness,  his  majesty,  his  excellence,  his  holiness,  etc. 
As  the  examples  show,  collective  names  take  their  rise  in  this 
•way  as  well  as  names  for  single  persons  and  things ;  but  the 
words  in  question  do  not  invariably  form  names  for  substantives. 
The  same  truth  holds  good  about  the  so-called  nouns  of  action 
as  about  the  names  of  qualities.  By  nouns  of  action  we  mean 
appellations  of  activity  and  conditions  which  are  derived  from 
verbs — e.g. :  overflow,  train,  income,  government,  providence,  gilding, 
warning ;  in  German  such  words  as  rat,  fluss,  vortrab,  zukunft. 
In  these  cases  the  name  of  the  action  has  been  transferred  to 
its  subject;  but  it  might  equally  well  be  transferred  to  its 
object,  if  object  be  taken  in  the  widest  sense.  Thus  it  may  be 
transferred  to  the  inner  object,  the  consequence  of  which  is  the 
denotation  of  the  result — e.g. :  rift,  spring,  growth,  a  rise  (out  of 
a  plain),  assembly,  union,  education;  or  to  the  exterior  object 
which  in  any  way  is  affected  by  the  activity,  thus,  seed,  speech, 
doings,  lamentations,  bewailings,  resort,  excuse,  dwelling ;  add  the 
German  einfahrt,  ausflucht :  by  this  method  names  also  are  created 
for  the  place  where  anything  happens,  for  the  means  whereby 
anything  is  brought  to  pass,  etc.  Here,  too,  we  may  classify  the 
practice  of  denoting  writings  by  the  name  of  their  author,  as 
Have  you  read  Shakespeare  ? — or  works  of  art  by  the  name  of 
their  painter  or  sculptor,  as  a  Raphael,  a  Michael  Angela  ;  further, 
that  of  calling  a  person  by  some  nickname  derived  from  some 
favourite  word  of  his  own,  as  Heinrich  Jasomirgott  [and    Cedo 


'^Atinais,  alteram  in  Tacitus];*Hhe  nursery  names  of  animals,  as  a  bow-wow, 
a  gee-gee,  etc. ;  besides  these  we  may  add  the  names  of  such 
plants  as  noli  me  tangere,  forget-me-not,  etc. 

combmation        126.  Of  course  the  different  kinds  of  change  in  meaning  may 

ciass'es.  ""^^  foIIow  each  other,  and  so  combine.  Thus  the  word  abendmal 
has  in  one  sense  gained  in  its  comprehension,  seeing  that  it  is 
confined  to  the  sacrament  of  the  Lord's  Supper,  z.r\d  the  solemn 
ceremony  connected  with  it :  on  the  other  hand,  it  has  lost  some 
of  its  meaning,  seeing  that  it  is  used  of  a  solemn  ceremony  which 
does  not  take  place  in  the  evening.  Rosary  is  used  of  a  special 
kind  of  necklace  composed  of  beads,  and  used  for  a  definite 
sacred  purpose,  but  has  lost  in  its  meaning  all  connexion  with 
roses.  A  horn  is  a  wind  instrument  which  may  be  made  of  horn ; 
but  the  name  may  equally  well  apply  to  an  instrument  made  out 
of  other  materials. 

127.  It  is  common  enough  to  find  that  some  idea  foreign 
to  the  essence  of  a  word,  but  only  accidentally  connected  with 
it,  gradually  becomes  absorbed  into  its  signification  as  a  mere 
accessory ;  and  this  is  then  thought  of  as  the  proper  meaning, 
the  primary  meaning  passing  out  of  memory.  Thus  names  of 
relations  of  place  and  time  gradually  pass  into  causal  words :  as 
consequence,  purpose,  end  (in  such  phrases  as  He  did  it  to  the  end 
that,  etc.)  m.eans,  way. 

Change  of  128.  Seeing  that  all  language  proceeds  in  sentences — in  fact, 

Groups  of     that  the  unit  of  language,  alike   in   thought   and   in   sound    is 
Words.         ^1  ^  ,  ,  ,      .      .  ' 

the  sentence  and  not   the  word — it  is  natural  enough  that  the 

change  in  meaning  should  affect  not  merely  the  separate  words 

but    also    groups   of   words   and    entire  sentences.      These   are 

capable,  of  course,  of  assuming  a  meaning   at   first   occasional, 

which  presently,  however,  by  repetition  becomes  usual :  a  meaning 

which  is  not  covered  by  the  words  which  we  receive  when  we 

'  Cf.  Praise-God  Barebones  ;  Archibald  Bell-the-Cat,  &c. 


connect  the  meanings  of  the  words  which  compose  the  whole 
group.  .  A  very  few  examples  of  this  process  may  suffice, 
as  we  shall  have  to  recur  to  this  peculiarity  in  Chapter  xix. 
There  are  many  combinations  in  German,  in  which  the  word 
hand  plays  a  great  part,  in  which,  however,  the  signification 
hand  is  hardly  thought  of,  unless  special  attention  is  drawn 
to  it  Such  are  auf  der  hand  liegen,  an  die  hand  geben,  bei 
der  hand  sein,  unter  handen  haben,  etc.  We  might  parallel  these 
expressions  in  English  by  such  phrases  as  well  in  hand,  offhand, 
hands  off,  at  hand,  etc.  We  cannot  say  in  these  cases  that  special 
meanings  of  the  word  hand  have  been  developed  ;  they  have  rather 
been  obscured  by  the  attention  which  we  have  come  to  pay  to  the 
meaning  of  the  phrase  as  a  whole.  English,  like  German,  is  full  of 
such  turns  of  expression.  In  many  of  these  the  sense  can  only  be 
derived  from  the  meanings  of  the  several  words  by  the  aid  of  an 
historical  knowledge  of  language.  Take  such  phrases  as  das  bad 
austragen,  einem.  ein  bad  zurichten,  einem  das  bad  gesegnen  (from 
Clytemnestra's  murder  of  Agamemnon  in  the  bath),  einen  baren 
anbinden,  einen  bock  schiessen,  einen  ins  bockshorn  j'agen  (from 
the  tall  talk  of  sportsmen)  weder  hand  noch  fuss  haben,  einem 
einen  korb  geben,  maulaffen  feil  halten,  einem  etwas  auf  die  nase 
binden,  einem  den  pelz  waschen,  einem  ein  x  fiir  ein  u  machen,  etc. 
[In  English  we  may  cite  such  cases  as  to  dine  with  Duke 
Humphrey,  to  tell  a  cock  and  bull  story,  all  his  geese  are  swans, 
to  stuff  one  up,  to  give  one  the  sack,  to  be  half  seas  over,  etc.] 

12Q.  The  entire  store  of  ideas  in  the  human  mind   strives  toScop=of 

-^  ^  Meaning 

attach  itself  to  the  vocabulary  of  language.     But  the  circle  of  the  cond;tio.ied 

by  the  state 

ideas  of  single  individuals  in  any  society  differs  widely  from  that  of  culture 

...  of  the 

of  others  in  the  same  society,  and  what  is  more,  the  circle  of  individual 


the   ideas   of  each  individual   is   always   liable  to  expansion  or 
contraction.      Hence   it    follows   that    a    quantity   of   individual 


peculiarities  must   necessarily  be  found  in  the  ideas  attached   to 
the   vocabulary ; — peculiarities    which    pass    without    recognition 
in   the   common   definitions    of   meaning  in   the   case   of   single 
words,  and  groups  of  words.      For  instance,  it  is  doubtless  true 
that   the   word   horse  has   the   same   meaning  for  everybody,  in 
so    far  as   everybody   refers    it    to  the   same  object ;    but  it  is 
equally  true  that  each  man  in  his  own  particular  line,  a  rider,  or 
a  coachman,  or  a  zoologist  will  connect  therewith  a  richer  quan- 
tity of  conceptions   than   any  one  who  has  nothing  to  do  with 
horses.     The  idea  of  the  position  of  a  father  with  respect  to  his 
own  child  is  composed  of  a  series  of  factors,  which  are  not  always 
present  in  their  entirety  when  the  word  father  is  employed.     We 
can  propound  a  definition   of  the  word  father  which  may  satisfy 
the  claims   of  physical  and     legal     science  ;  but  the  very  point 
which,  according  to  this  definition,  makes  up  the  very  essence  of 
the  fathership,  is  not  contained  at  all  in  the  ideas  which  a  little 
child   connects   with    the  word.     The   differences  in  the  ground 
covered  by  feeling  and  ethical  judgment   are  the  most  obvious 
and  remarkable.    What  different  individuals  understand  by  good 
and  bad,  by  virtue  and   vice,   is  impossible  to  bring  under  one 
definition,  indisputable  and  undisputed. 
Scope  of  130.  As  the  circle  of  ideas  of  each  individual   connects  itself 


conditioned   With  the  store  of  words  at  his  disposal,  it  follows  that  the  meanin? 

by  the  state        r      r.  • 

ofcuiture      ot  the  cntirc  store  of  words  in  a  language  must  arrange  itself 

of  the  whole  - .  "  & 

commumty.  accordmg  to  the  entirety  of  ideas  found  in  any  people,  and  must 
change  as  these  change.  The  meaning  of  the  words  adapts  itself 
to  the  standard  of  culture  attained  from  time  to  time  by  each 
nation.  This  comes  about,  not  merely  owing  to  the  fact  that  new 
words  are  created  for  new  objects  and  new  relations,  or  that 
kindred  though  different  meanings  become  attached  to  the  old 
words  (as  in  the  instance  of  stahl  and  feder,  '  a  steel  pen,'  literally 


'a  steel  feather'),  but  there  are  besides  many  scarce  perceptible 
changes  which  are  not  commonly  remarked  as  such  at  all,  and 
which  are  the  immediate  result  of  a  change  in  the  whole  culture  of 
a  nation.  [Take  such  words  as  humility,  talent,  spirituality,  and 
the  numerous  other  words  to  which  Christianity  has  given  a  deeper 
and  more  spiritual  significance.]  Then  again,  such  a  word  as  ship 
may  have  taken  its  origin  when  there  were  only  the  most  primitive 
kind  of  ships  in  existence,  and  the  word  may  have  lived  on  after  a 
time  when  ships  are  constructed  of  enormous  size  and  complexity. 
We  do  not  in  such  cases  assume  any  change  in  meaning,  but  still  it 
must  be  conceded  that  the  ideas  attaching  to  the  word  ship  have 
changed  considerably.  And  thus  it  fares  with  all  the  products  of 
civilisation,  whether  these  be  sensuous  objects,  or  purely  mental 
or  intellectual  conceptions. 

Material-  A      J 

and  Formal-       /  % 
Tjroups.  J^     ^ 



Material-  A  S  has  been  noticed  in  Chapter  I.,  single  words  attract  each 
other  in  the  human  mind,  and  the  result  is  the  appearance 
of  a  quantity  of  larger  or  smaller  groups.  This  reciprocal  attrac- 
tion depends  always  upon  a  partial  correspondence  of  the  sound  ''■ 
or  of  the  meaning,  or  of  the  sound  and  the  meaning  conjoined. 
The  separate  groups  do  not  always  run  in  separate  parallel  lines. 
There  are  larger  groups  which  comprise  several  smaller  groups, 
and  a  constant  process  of  reciprocal  crossing  is  taking  place  among 
the  groups.  We  must  distinguish  two  main  divisions  which  we 
will  denominate  as  the  '  material '  and  the  '  formal.' 

132.  A  material-group  is  formed  by,  for  instance,  the  different 
cases  of  a  substantive.  This  group  again  admits  of  division  into 
smaller  groups  according  to  two  different  principles  ;  into  cases  on 
the  one  hand  of  the  singular,  dual,  and  plural ;  or  into  the  forms  of 
nominative  of  the  singular,  plural,  and  dual,  and  genitives,  datives, 
etc.,  of  the  same  numbers ;  and  these  two  methods  of  grouping 
cross  each  other.  A  more  complicated  system  of  groups  principal 
and  subordinate  is  supplied  us  by  the  forms  of  the  verb,  especially 
in  Greek.  Larger  material-groups  with  looser  connexions  arise 
next  by  the  connexion  of  all  words  which  correspond  in  their 
meaning.  As  a  rule,  partial  agreement  in  signification  is  accom- 
panied by  partial  agreement  in  the  form  taken  by  the  sounds  ;  and 


Ch.  V.l  ON  ANALOGY.  93 

this  again  commonly  depends  upon  the  etymological  connexion  of 
the  word.  There  are,  however,  material-groups  based  solely  on 
meaning  and  not  upon  sound :  such  as  sein — werden,  be-^—was, 
here — there,  good — better,  am — is,,  parvus — minor,  opdos — elSov — 

133.  We  understand  by  formal-groups  the  sum  of  all  nouns  of  , 
.action  taken  together,  of  all  comparatives,  of  all  nominatives,  of  all ' 
first  persons  of  the  verb,  etc. 

134.  There  are  also  in  this  case  larger  groups,  which  again 
comprise  smaller ;  for  instance,  the  last-named  ist  singular  indica- 
tive present  may  be  grouped  with  the  ist  singular  subjunctive 
present.  Further,  the  connexion  may  be  of  a  closer  or  looser 
character  as  it  may  happen.  The  connexion  of  a  functional  cor- 
respondence with  one  of  sound  is  in  the  case  of  the  formal-groups 
not  nearly  so  commonly  formed  as  in  the  case  of  the  material  ones. 
Commonly  the  formal-groups  fall  into  several  smaller  ones,  each 
single  one  of  which  is  held  together  by  correspondence  of  its 
sounds,  whilst  they  differ  among  themselves ;  cf.,  the  datives  /ibro, 
anno — mensae,  rosae—paci,  luci,  etc.  Then,  according  to  the 
measure,  greater  or  smaller,  of  correspondence  in  sound,  there  arises 
again  a  subordination  of  lesser  groups  to  larger ;  cf. :  gab,  nahm — 
bot,  log—briet,  riet— held,  fell,  which  correspond  with  each  other,  as 
contrasted  with  instances  like  sagte,  liebte,  etc.  [and  said  and  loved:\. 

135.  The  material-groups  are  all  the  way  through  crossed  with 
the  formal. 

136.  Not    merely    do    single    words    tend    to   coalesce    into  »;- 
groups,  but  analogous   proportions   between    different   words    do  Mat^ai- 
likewise.     The  motive  to  the  creation  of  such  proportion-groups, 
which  form  at  the  same  time  an  equation  of  proportions,  is  given 

by  the  interpenetration  of  the  material-  and  formal-groups  spoken 
of.     The  basis  for  the  comparison  is  in  this  case  the  correspon- 


ence  of  the  signification  of  the  material  element  in  the  one  direc- 
tion and  the  formal  in  the  other ;  so  that  we  may  call  this  division 
the  material-formal  proportion-groups.  A  correspondence  in  sound 
may  possibly  occur  in  both  directions  ;  cf.  tag  :  tages  :  tage=arm : 
armes  :  arme=fisch  :  fisches  :  fische ;  filhren  :  fuhrer  :  fuhrung= 
erziehen  :  erzieher  :  erziehung,  etc. ;  cf.  lead,  leader,  leading ;  ride, 
^  rider,  riding; — or  with  the  permutation,  which  is  possible  in  the 
case  of  all  proportions,  of  the  connectingmembers  tag  :  arm : 
fisch  =  tages  :  armes  :  fisches,  etc.  The  correspondence  in  sound 
may,  however,  be  confined  to  the  material  element ;  cf.  gebe  :  gab  = 
sage  :  sagte  =  kann :  konnte  ;  Lat.  mensa  :  mensam  :  mensae  =  hortus : 
hortum  :  horti=nox  :  noctem  :  noctis,  etc.;  rauben  :  raub  =  ernten  : 
ernte  =  sden  :  sat—gewinnen  :  gewinst ;  as  against  gebe  :  sage  :  kann 
=gab :  sagte :  konnte,  etc.  Equations,  however,  in  which  the  cor- 
respondence of  sound  is  limited  to  the  formal  element,  are  of 
much  less  importance,  as  gut  :  besser=schon  :  schoner,  as  are  those 
in  which  no  correspondence  of  sound  occurs  at  all,  as  in  the  case 
of  bin :  war^=  lebe  '•  lebte ;  opdm  :  elSov  =  tutttcb  :  ervdra  ;  am  :  was  = 
live  :  lived=go  :  went ;  do  and  did. 

137.  It  is  possible  too  for  proportion-groups  to  form  with- 
in the  forms  which  belong  to  a  material-group,  as  soon  as  an 
arrangement  of  these  is  possible  from  different  points  of  view. 
Thus,  in  the  case  of  the  noun,  the  cases  of  the  singular  may  be  set 
in  proportion  with  those  of  the  plural,  as  in  hortus  :  horti :  horto  = 
horti  :  hortorum  :  hortis.  A  verbal  system  gives  still  more  mani- 
fold proportions.  We  may,  for  example,  propose  equations  like 
amo  :  anias :  amavi :  amavisti=amabam  :  amabas,  etc.  There  exists 
here  then  no  difference  of  the  material  element  in  the  correspond- 
ing members,  as  in  the  case  of  the  material-formal  proportion- 
groups;  but  in  its  place  a  partial  difference  manifests  itself  in 
the   function   of  the   formal  element  by  the  side   of  the  partial 

v.]  ON  ANALOGY. 


correspondence.  A  correspondence  in  the  sound  may  possibly 
connect  itself  with  the  correspondence  in  the  function  ;  cf.  amabam : 
amabas  =  amaveram  :  amaveras  [the  tense  stem  being  amd\. 

138.  Another  kind  of  equation  of  proportions  depends  on  the 
sound-substitution ;  *  cf.  ^/««^gj  (phonetically  written  klannes):  klang  *Lauu 

'  {klank)  =  singe :  sang=  hdnge :  hdngte,  etc.,  or  spruch :  spriiche  =  tuch : 
tucker  =  buck :  bilcklein  (change  between  guttural  and  palatal  ck), 
\cf.  wife:  wives  =  calf :  calves,  etc.]. 

139.  The  members  of  each  proportion  here  consist  of  words 
connected  etymologically,  and  hence  showing  connexion  in  their 
material  element  with  respect  to  their  signification  and  the  arrange- 
ment of  their  sounds ;  showing  at  the  same  time,  however,  a 
difference  in  sound,  which  manifests  itself  correspondingly  in  all 
other  proportions.  The  connexion  of  the  formal  elements  in  this 
case  does  not  enter  into  consideration.  As  long  as  we  only  con- 
sider cases  like  Manges  :  klang=sanges  :  sang=dranges  :  drang,  we 
cannot  definitely  decide  if  we  have  not  rather  to  do  with  a  material- 
formal  equation  of  proportions.  The  sound  substitution  must — if 
it  is  to  be  cited  here — appear  in  cases  which  as  far  as  the  rela- 
tions of  function  are  concerned  have  nothing  in  common,  and 
must  thereby  appear  independent  of  the  meaning.  We  dis- 
tinguish this  division  of  proportion-groups  as  the  material-sound-  -^ 
groups,  or  etymological-sound-groups, 

140.  A  further  kind  arises  from  syntacticaLconnexions.  This  J 
differs  from  those  hitherto  described,  in  the  fact  that  the  con- 
nexion of  the  members  of  which  the  single  proportions  are  made 
up,  forces  itself  on  the  mind  from  without,  i.e.  by  hearing  or  speak- 
ing. The  connexion  of  analogous  proportions  with  each  other 
must  likewise  be  called  into  existence  by  attraction  in  the  mind 
itself  For  instance,  sentences  like  Rose  a  nurse  of  ninety  years, 
associate  themselves  with  others  like  Out  spake  the  mighty  Appius  ; 


the  predicate  in  both  cases  preceding.  Again,  associations  come 
about  Hke  that  of  pater  mortuus  with  filia  pulchra  and  caput 
magnum  (where  in  each  case  there  is  agreement  in  gender,  number, 
and  case) ;  and  by  such  associations  we  get  the  equation  rose : 
nurse  =  spake  :  Appius,  and  pater  :  mortuus  =  filia  : pulchra  =  caput: 
magnum.  The  feeling  for  a  particular  function  associates  itself 
with  the  exterior  form  of  the  syntactic  connexion,  and  this  function 
then,  in  common  with  the  exterior  form,  constitutes  the  bond  which 
holds  the  proportions  together.  All  syntactic  functions  can  be 
abstracted  from  such  proportions,  and  such  alone.  And  hence  it 
arises  that  the  syntactical  proportion-groups  are  in  some  degree 
the  necessary  antecedent  for  the  creation  of  the  formal-groups 
and  of  the  material-formal  relation-groups.  For  instance,  it  is 
impossible  for  genitives  to  group  themselves  together  unless 
such  connexions  as  the  house  of  the  father,  Charles'  brother,  etc. 
do  so  antecedently. 
Influence  of         141.  There  is  hardly  a  word  in  any  language  which  can  be  said 


Groups  upon  to  Stand  completely  out  of  the  groups  here  sketched.     Others  are 


(Analogical    always  to  be  found  in  some  respects  like  them,  to  which  they  can 


attach  themselves.  But  with  respect  to  the  greater  or  less  variety 
of  the  connexions  into  which  a  word  enters,  and  with  respect  to 
the  intimacy  of  the  connexion,  there  are  notable  differences.  The 
process  of  grouping  comes  to  its  accomplishment  so  much  more 
easily,  and  is  so  much  the  more  durable,  on  the  one  hand,  the 
greater  the  correspondence  in  signification,  and  in  the  shape  taken 
by  the  sounds ;— on  the  other,  the  more  intensely  the  elements 
adapted  to  form  groups  are  pressed  on  our  notice.  In  the  last 
respect  we  have  to  take  into  account  for  the  proportion-groups 
on  the  one  side,  the  frequency  of  the  occurrence  of  single  words  • 
on  the  other,  the  number  of  possible  analogous  proportions  has  to 
be  taken  into  account.     Where  the  single  elements  are  not  impres- 

v.]  ON  ANALOGY. 


sive  enough,  or  where  their  inter-correspondence  is  too  weak,  they 
either  fail  to  unite  at  all,  or  their  union  is  at  best  a  loose  one. 
There  are  again  in  this  case  numerous  intermediary  grades  possible. 

142.  Those  proportion-groups  which  have  gained  a  certain 
degree  of  solidity  are  of  supreme  importance  for  all  linguistic 
activity,  and  for  all  development  of  language.  It  is  unjust  to 
this  important  factor  in  the  life  of  language  to  neglect  to  take  it 
into  any  account,  until  it  produces  an  actual  change  in  the  use 
of  language.  One  of  the  fundamental  errors  of  the  old  science  of 
language  was  to  deal  with  all  human  utterances,  as  long  as  they 
remain  constant  to  the  common  usage,  as  with  something  merely 
reproduced  by  memory,  and  the  result  of  this  has  been  that  we 
have  not  been  in  a  position  to  form  any  right  conception  of  the 
share  taken  by  proportion-groups  in  the  alteration  of  language. 
True  it  is  that  W.  v.  Humboldt  insisted  on  the  fact  that  speaking 
is  a  perpetual  creation.  But  even  down  to  the  present  day  we 
find  ourselves  confronted  by  spirited  and  often  unintelligent 
opposition  as  soon  as  we  insist  upon  the  logical  results  of  this 

143.  The  fact  is  that  the  mere  reproduction  by  memory  of  what 
it  has  once  mastered  is  only  one  factor  in  the  words  and  groups 
of  words  which  we  employ  in  our  speech.  Another  hardly  less 
important  factor  is  the  combinatory  activity  based  upon  the  exist- 
ence of  the  proportion-groups.     The  combination  consists  to  some 

^xtent  in  the  solution  of  an  equation  between  proportions,  by  the  ; 

/process  of  freely  creating,  for  a  word  already  familiar,  on   the  ! 

Imodel   of  proportions   likewise   familiar,   a   second    proportional 

Vmember.     This  process  we  call  formation  by  analogy.     It  is  an 

incontrovertible  fact  that  a  quantity  of  word-forms  and  syntactic 

combinations  which  have  never  been  introduced  into  the  mind 

from  without,  are  able  not  merely  to  spring  into  being  by  the 



aid  of  proportion -groups,  but   also   henceforward  are    confidently- 
produced    without    the    speaker    having   any   consciousness    that 
he    is  leaving  the  safe  ground  of  what  he  had   learnt.      For  the 
nature    of    this    proceeding    it   is    immaterial    whether   anything, 
during     the     process,    appears,     which    was    usual    in    language 
before,    or    something    which    was    not    there    before.       Further, 
it    makes    no    essential    difference    whether    the    new    stands    in 
any    kind  of  contradiction  to  that  which    prevailed    hitherto  :    it 
suffices  that  the  individual  who  is  uttering  a  word  feels  no  con- 
tradiction with  what  he  has  already  learned.     In  other  cases  it  is 
doubtless  true  that  a  reception  has  taken  place  from  outside  ;  but 
the  after-effects  of  this  would  be  too  weak  for  the  matter  received 
to  be  again  recalled  into  memory,  were  it  not  that  the  proportion- 
group  into  which  it  has  been  ranged  comes  to  its  aid. 
Analogical  144.  It  will  be  readily  conceded  that  a  minimum  of  the  sen- 

Creation  in 

Syntax.  tetices  which  we  utter  is  learnt  by  heart  as  such — that  most  of 
them,  on  the  contrary,  are  composed  on  the  spur  of  the  moment.  If 
we  try  to  master  a  foreign  language  methodically,  rules  are  given  us, 
according  to  which  we  join  together  the  single  words  into  sentences. 
But  no  teacher,  who  has  mastered  the  rules  of  his  profession,  will 
fail,  as  he  goes  on,  to  give  examples  to  illustrate  the  rules,  i.e.  with 
a  view  to  the  sentences  which  are  to  be  independently  framed. 
Rule  and  example  mutually  supplement  each  other  in  their  activity, 
and  we  can  see  by  this  procedure  of  our  teachers  that  certain 
advantages  attach  to  the  concrete  example  which  are  lackino-  to 
the  abstract  rule.  In  the  process  of  naturally  masterino-  one's 
mother-tongue  no  rule,  as  such,  is  given,  but  only  a  number  of 
examples.  We  hear  gradually  a  number  of  sentences  which  are 
connected  together  in  the  same  way,  and  which  hence  associate 
themselves  together  into  one  group.  The  recollection  of  the  special 
contents  of  the  single  sentences  may  grow  less  and  less  distinct  in 

v.]  ON  ANALOGY. 


\the  process  ;  the  common  element  is  always  strengthened  anew  by- 
repetition,  and  it  thus  comes  about  that  the  rule  is  unconsciously  ab- 
stracted from  the  examples.  It  is  precisely  because  no  abstract  rule 
is  laid  down  that  no  single  example  suffices,  but  only  a  group  of 
examples  whose  special  contents  appear  a  matter  of  indifference. 
For  the  idea  of  the  general  applicability  of  the  examples  cited,  which 
gives  each  individual  the  feeling  that  he  is  authorised  to  compose 
sentences  on  his  own  account,  becomes  developed  only  by  this 
process.  As  soon  as  a  rule  learned  by  rote  has  been  frequently 
enough  applied,  the  time  has  arrived  when  it  can  begin  to  operate 
automatically.  It  is  unnecessary  to  call  either  the  rules  or 
a  particular  example  into  consciousness,  in  order  to  still  form 
perfectly  correct  sentences.  In  fact,  as  far  as  the  common  practice 
in  practical  exercise  goes,  the  learner  arrives  by  a  circuitous  route 
at  the  very  same  point  attained  by  the  man  who  has  enjoyed  no 
grammatical  training  at  all. 

145.  One  of  the  main  disadvantages  entailed  on  the  individual 
who  has  received  his  ideas  by  example  only,  as  opposed  to  him 
who  has  received  the  rule  and  example  at  once,  consists  in  the 
fact  that  he  is  not,  like  the  latter,  fully  instructed  as  to  the  appli- 
cability of  his  examples.  For  instance,  whoever  hears  the  German 
preposition  in  repeatedly  employed  with  an  accusative,  will  be 
easily  led  to  apprehend  this  as  the  ordinary  usage  of  in;  and 
whoever  hears  the  same  word  employed  sometimes  with  an  accusa- 
tive, and  sometimes  with  a  dative,  will  need  at  least  a  certain 
time  before  he  has  correctly  mastered  the  difference,  and  meanwhile 
will  use  one  or  the  other  promiscuously.  In  a  case  like  this,  a 
definite  rule  simplifies  matters.  Such  a  combination  of  two 
groups  which  by  usage  should  be  kept  apart,  becomes  more 
possible  the  finer  the  logical  distinction  needed  for  the  purpose, 
and  the  greater  the  room  left  thereby  for  subjective  apprehension. 


146.  But  a  group  is  in  the  best  position  for  extending 
its  precedent  over  the  area  of  a  related  group,  if  it  decidedly 
surpasses  the  latter  in  respect  of  the  frequency  of  the  cases 
which  occur.  And  besides,  much  that  occurs  in  the  usage 
of  language  stands  isolated  and  alone,  and  neither  fits  in  with 
any  consciously  abstracted  rule,  nor  with  a  group  that  has  uncon- 
sciously arisen.  But  all  that  part  of  language  which  lacks  the 
support  of  an  environing  group,  or  which  enjoys  it  only  in  a 
limited  measure,  proves,  unless  impressed  by  repeated  usage 
intensely  upon  the  memory,  not  strong  enough  to  withstand  the 
power  of  the  larger  groups.  Thus,  to  cite  one  example,  in  German, 
as  in  other  IE.  languages,  the  rule  is,  that  in  cases  where  two 
objects  depend  on  one  verb,  one  stands  in  the  accusative,  the 
other  in  the  dative.  But  there  are  accompanying  this  rule  certain 
cases,  and  there  were  formerly  more,  in  which  a  double  accusa- 
tive stands  instead.  These  cases  have  to  be  learnt  by  heart,  and 
always  must  have  been.  The  instinct  of  language  becomes 
hesitating  in  consequence  of  the  contravention  of  the  common 
rule,  and  this  may  finally  lead  to  the  disappearance  of  the  con- 
struction as  it  becomes  isolated.  We  hear  at  the  present  day 
almost  as  often  the  expression  '  Er  lehrt  mir  die  kunsi,'  as 
'Er  lehrt  mich  die  kunst ;'  and  no  one  says  any  longer  '  Ich 
verhehle  dick  die  sacke'  after  the  mhg.  model,  but  only  ' Ick  ver- 
hehle  dir! 

147.  But  the  creative  activity  of  the  individual  is  very  marked 
in  the  area  of  word-formation,  and  still  more  in  that  of  inflexion. 
Very  few  of  the  verbal  and  noun  forms  that  we  pronounce  are  due 
to  reproduction  by  a  mere  effort  of  memory  ;  there  are  many  which 
we  have  never  before  spoken  nor  heard  ;  others  so  seldom,  that 
without  the  aid  of  the  groups  with  which  they  have  connected 
themselves,  they  could  never  be  recalled  into  consciousness.     In 

v.]  ON  ANALOGY. 


any  case  the  ordinary  rule  is  that  production  and  reproduction 
operate  together,  and  this  in  very  different  relative  proportions  to 
each  other. 

148.  The  operations  of  analogy  force  themselves  on  our  atten-  j 
tion  with  special  clearness  in  the  case  of  the  grammatical  adoption  i 
of  the  inflexional  forms  of  a  foreign  tongue.  A  quantity  of  para- 
digms are  committed  to  memory,  and  then  of  the  single  words 
only  so  many  forms  are  impressed  on  the  mind  as  are  sufficient 
to  fix  the  fact  that  they  belong  to  such  or  such  paradigm.  Some- 
times a  single  form  is  sufficient.  The  other  forms  are  created  at 
the  moment  when  they  are  wanted,  according  to  the  paradigms — 
i.e.  according  to  analogy.  In  the  beginning  the  paradigm  which 
has  been  committed  to  memory  will  be  that  which  each  will  have 
before  his  eyes.  But  after  a  fairly  large  number  of  words  has 
been  formed  after  this  model,  and  these  have  left  traces  in  the 
mind,  the  act  of  creation  follows  even  without  the  word  which  has 
served  as  paradigm  coming  into  consciousness.  The  forms  at 
an  earlier  period  shaped  from  other  words  now  co-operate,  and 
the  result  is  that  only  the  formal  element  common  to  all  alike 
comes  into  consciousness,  while  the  different  material  elements 
reciprocally  bar  each  other's  way.  And  thus  now  the  relation- 
ship of  the  speaker  to  the  inflexion-forms  at  the  moment  of  his 
application  of  them  is  much  the  same  as  that  gained  in  the 
natural  process  of  mastering  the  mother-tongue.  This  natural 
process  of  learning  leads,  by  a  less  direct  but  in  the  end  not  less 
certain  path,  to  the  same  goal.  In  this  process  there  is  no  special 
adhesion  of  the  formal  elements  to  a  special  single  material  one, 
and  the  totality  of  the  possible  forms  never  ranges  itself  in  a 
definite  sequence  into  one  series.  The  principle  is  never  laid  down 
that  such  a  word  must  accommodate  itself  to  another.  The  cir- 
cumstance that  a  quantity  of  forms  of  different  words  have  like 


we  are  justified  in  carrying  this  likeness  still  further.  As  soon  as 
all  the  forms  of  a  quantity  of  words  have  imprinted  themselves  on 
the  mind  and  closed  into  groups,  the  instinct  of  language  regards  it 
as  self-evident  that  the  forms  of  other  groups  belong  as  well  to 
such  groups  :  e.g.,  that  the  other  cases  of  a  substantive  belong  as  a 
necessary  complement  to  the  nominative  or  genitive  of  a  sub- 
stantive. And  hence  it  comes  also  that  we  do  not  apprehend 
each  case  and  each  verbal  form  as  a  special  word,  but  that  we 
comprise  at  once  the  whole  series  of  forms  under  the  ordinary 
titular  form  (nominative,  infinitive)  of  a  substantive  or  a  verb. 

149.  The  conditions  connected  with  word-formation  resemble 
only  partially  those  connected  with  inflexion.  It  is  true  that 
numerous  methods  of  such  formation  are  produced  as  easily  and 
simply  as  inflexional  forms,  as  for  instance  the  comparative  and 
superlative  from  the  positive.  In  other  cases  the  words  trans- 
mitted produce  creations  by  analogy  only  in  limited  quantities, 
and  again  in  the  case  of  others  they  produce  none  at  all.  This 
difference  of  behaviour  is  simply  conditioned  by  the  different 
adaptability  of  the  material  transmitted  to   group-formation. 

150.  Seeing  that  most  of  the  forms  common  in  language 
permit  of  being  reduced  to  similarly  related  groups,  it  is  natural 
enough  that  by  the  aid  of  proportions,  groups  should  often  be 
created  which  were  before  common  in  language.  But  if  this  was 
to  be  invariably  the  case,  on  the  one  hand,  all  forms  which  could 
have  been  formed  according  to  proportion  would  have  had  to  be 
already  once  formed  ;  and,  on  the  other  hand,  the  form  system 
must  have  been  supposed  to  exist  in  such  perfect  harmony  as  we 
nowhere  find  in  fact ;  or  at  least,  where  different  methods  of  for- 
mation existed  side  by  side  (different  classes  of  declensions  or 
conjugations,  different  methods  of  forming  a  noun  of  the  agent 
from  a  verb,  etc.),  corresponding  forms  from  different  classes  would 

v.]  ON  ANALOGY. 


never  have  taken  analogous  forms ;  but  every  single  form  would 
indicate,  without  the  least  ambiguity,  to  which  of  the  existing 
classes  the  word  in  question  belonged.  As  soon  as  a  form  is 
capable,  from  a  structural  point  of  view,  of  belonging  to  more 
classes  than  one,  it  becomes  likewise  possible  to  construct  the  other 
forms  attaching  to  it  after  more  than  one  scheme.  Which  of  the 
two  alternative  schemes  shall  then  prevail  depends  solely  upon 
their  relative  strength. 

A  proportional  formation  meets  with  no  check  in  the  mind 
where  no  expression  for  the  function  for  which  it  is  created  is 
as  yet  in  existence.  It  meets  none  either  where  a  divergent 
expression  is  indeed  in  use,  which  has  not,  however,  been 
transmitted  to  the  person  in  question ;  and  this  is  common 
enough  in  words  not  in  common  use.  If,  however,  the  ordinary 
form  has  once  been  received  into  the  memory,  it  is  a  mere  question 
of  power  if,  at  the  moment  when  a  particular  function  is  to  be 
exercised,  a  form  is  raised  into  consciousness  for  this  purpose  by 
means  of  simple  reproduction  or  by  the  aid  of  a  proportion.  It 
may  in  this  case  happen  that  the  proportion  asserts  itself  in  the 
first  place,  but  that  the  connexion  formed  at  an  earlier  period 
with  the  memory-picture  of  the  usual  form  is  still  strong  enough 
to  render  perceptible  the  contrast  between  the  new  creation 
and  the  picture  in  the  memory.  One  begins  then  to  reflect  that 
one  was  going  to  say,  or  has  already  said,  something  wrong.  This 
is,  then,  one  of  the  various  ways  according  to  which  one  can  com- 
mit linguistic  errors.  It  is  a  similar  linguistic  error  when  the 
speaker,  after  he  has  spoken,  does  not  spontaneously  notice  the 
contrast  with  the  picture  in  his  memory,  but  immediately  recog- 
nises it  when  his  attention  is  called  to  it  by.  the  slightest  hint. 
But  the  power  of  the  memory-picture  may  be  so  small  that  it 
proves  unable  to  contend  against  the  proportional  formation,  and 
then  the  latter  prevails  unchallenged. 


151..  By  the  operation  of  the  groups  each  individual  has  thus 
at  once  the  power  and  the  provocation  to  pass  out  of  the  usual  in 
language,  and  both  in  a  high  degree. 

152.  We  have  now  to  notice  that  everything  created  in  this 
manner  leaves  a  lasting  effect  behind.  Should  this  not  be  from 
the  very  outset  strong  and  tenacious  enough  to  render  an  im- 
mediate reproduction  possible,  still  it  renders  a  future  repetition 
of  the  same  creative  process  more  easy,  and  contributes  towards 
the  further  removal  of  possible  opposing  obstacles.  By  dint  of 
such  repetitions,  such  power  can  afterwards  be  added  to  the  new 
formation  as  it  demanded  to  facilitate  its  direct  reproduction. 

153.  But  each  such  transgression  of  usage,  when  confined  to 
the  case  of  an  individual,  where  it  adds  something  to  the  usual 
sense  without  contradicting  it,  gives  the  impression  of  a  certain 
audacity  ;  where  it  does  contradict  it,  it  appears  as  an  unmistak- 
able fault.  It  is  possible  for  such  fault  to  remain  isolated,  and  not 
to  pass  into  any  sort  of  custom ;  it  is  likewise  possible  for  it,  even 
after  it  had  passed  into  custom,  to  be  laid  aside  again  by  dint  of 
intercourse,  whereby  the  usual  is  again  assumed,  whether  this  be 
for  the  first  time  or  anew.  Assuming,  however,  even  that  it  is  not 
laid  aside,  it  commonly  perishes  with  the  individual,  and  is  not 
readily  transferred  to  any  other.  It  is  much  easier  for  a  creation 
which  conflicts  with  no  previously  existing  one  to  be  thus  trans- 
ferred ;  in  this  case  it  is  far  easier  for  a  single  individual  to  give 
the  impulse.  On  the  other  hand,  it  results  similarly  with  the  re- 
placing of  the  hitherto-usual  by  the  new  as  with  sound-change  and 
change  in  meaning.  It  is  only  on  an  occasion  when,  within  a 
limited  area  of  intercourse,  the  same  new  creation  makes  its  influ- 
ence completely  felt,  and  this  spontaneously,  in  a  large  number 
of  individuals,  that  a  change  of  usage  can  take  form.     The  possi- 

^■]  ON  ANALOGY.  105 

bility  of  such  spontaneous  coincidences  as  evidenced  in  several 
persons  depends  on  the  overwhelming  agreement  in  the  organi- 
sation of  the  idea-groups  which  influence  human  speech.  The 
greater  the  number  of  those  among  whom  the  new  formation 
makes  its  appearance,  the  easier  will  be  its  transmission  to 
others ;  in  fact,  the  faster  will  what  at  first  seemed  an  "  irregu- 
larity" or  error  gain  in  authority. 

154.  Just  as  in  the  case  of  the  sound-relations,  and  in  the  case 
of  the  meaning  attributed  to  words,  we  find  in  new  analogical  for- 
mations the  most  violent  departures  from  ordinary  usage  in  the 
language  of  children.  The  less  finished,  and  the  weaker  the  im- 
pression made  by  single  words  and  forms,  the  fewer  are  the  restric- 
tions put  upon  the  new  creation  ;  the  wider  play,  in  fact,  will  it.  be 
found  to  have.  Thus  all  children  have  a  tendency  to  employ 
regular  and  usual  methods  of  composing  words  for  irregular  and 
unusual  modes,  which  latter  attach  themselves  but  loosely  to  their 
memory.  In  NHG.  [or  English],  for  instance,  they  are  disposed 
to  treat  all  verbs  as  weak.  If,  with  the  increasing  development 
of  the  individual,  the  process  of  new  formation  grows  more  and 
more  rare,  this  is  of  course  not  a  consequence  of  any  disappear- 
ance of  an  operative  force  which  was  originally  there,  but  of  the 
decreasing  necessity  for  any  such  formation  ;  since,  to  serve  the 
very  purpose  for  which  they  were  at  an  earlier  period  called  into 
being,  forms  caught  up  by  memory  tend  to  present  themselves 
more  and  more.  Commonly  it  will  be  found  that  in  this  particular 
area  the  "  irregularities  "  of  children's  talk  leave  behind  them  no 
particular  consequences  for  the  further  development  of  language  in 
general ;  but  here  and  there  we  may  trace  signs  even  of  this. 
Particularly  in  cases  where  the  adults  are  disposed  to  new  word- 
formations  will  a  corresponding  inclination  manifest  itself  even 
more  strongly  in  the  children  ;   and  these  will  allow  their  fancy  a 


free  career  as  soon  as  ever  the  necessary  restriction   due  to  the 
language  of  the  adults  is  removed. 

155.  An  analogical  new  formation  has  no  power  to  drive  out  of 
the  field  at  a  single  blow  a  pre-existent  form  of  similar  meaning. 
It  is  scarcely  conceivable  that  the  picture  of  the  latter  should 
at  one  and  the  same  moment  become  so  faint  in  all  the  indivi- 
duals of  a  community  that  analogical  formation  could  proceed  on 
its  course  without  let  or  hindrance.  On  the  contrary,  it  always 
happens  that  certain  individuals  persistently  maintain  the  old  form, 
while  others  avail  themselves  at  once  of  the  new  formation.  But 
as  long  as  ever  an  unbroken  intercourse  is  maintained  between 
the  two,  there  must  be  some  kind  of  compromise  as  well,  and 
thus,  in  a  smaller  or  more  numerous  group  of  individuals  both 
forms  must  necessarily  become  current.  Not  till  after  a  long  and 
obstinate  struggle  between  both  forms  can  the  new  formation  be 
invested  with  undisputed  sway. 

156.  Seeing  that  the  new  analogical  formation  is  the  solution  of 
an  equation  between  proportions,  it  follows  that  at  least  three 
terms  must  be  present  to  enable  such  an  equation  to  be  instituted. 
Each  must  be  capable  of  being  compared  in  some  point  with  the 
other — i.e.  in  this  case  an  agreement  must  appear,  with  the  one 
in  the  material,  with  the  other  in  the  formal  element.  Thus  in 
Latin  such  an  equation  may  be  instituted  as  this, — animus  :  animi 
=  senatus  : x,  but  not  animus :  animi=inensa : x.    And  thus  it  happens 

I  that  a  word  can  undergo  no  analogical  influence  from  other  words 
unless  it  agrees  with  these  in  the  formation  of  one  form  or  of  several. 
No  doubt  it  is  true  that  influence  at  times  makes  itself  felt  without 
such  agreement,  but  this  can  then  hardly  be  called  formation  by 
analogy  in  the  strict  sense  of  the  word.  A  flexional  termination 
may  be  felt  owing  to  the  special  frequency  of  its  occurrence  as  the 
regular  and  usual  termination  for  a  flexional  form.    It  then  extends 

"^•1  ON  ANALOGY.  107 


probably  to  other  words  even  without  the  support  of  words 
larly  formed.  Of  this  nature  is,  in  Attic  Greek,  the  extension  of  the 
genitive  termination  -ov  from  the  second  declension  to  the  mascu- 
Hnes  of  the  first :  we  find  iroXirov  instead  of  -n-dklTew,  as  we  should 
expect,  from  the  Homeric  -ao  and  Doric  -d;  the  coincidence  of 
both  in  gender  has  in  this  case  sufficed  to  set  the  influence  at  work. 
[There  are  many  similar  instances  in  modern  Greek.]  The  genitive 
dual  of  the  third  declension  in  Greek  has  borrowed  its  termination 
from  the  second  ;  iro^olv  is  formed  after  the  analogy  of  iiriroiv. 
In  German  the  genitive  ending  in  s  is  transferred  to  the  feminine 
proper  names  with  the  termination  a,  as  Berthas,  Claras. 

157.  Of  course  new  formations  come  into  existence  as  well  on 
the  basis  of  the  proportion-groups  described  before,  which  combine 
out  of  forms  of  a  similar  material-group.  In  MHG.  the  third  per- 
sons plural  run  as  follows: — Indie,  ^^rt?,.  gebent,  con]. geben ;  indie. 
pret.  gaben,  conj.  gaben.  In  nhg.  the  form  geben  has  also  been 
adopted  in  the  indie,  pres.,  after  the  analogy  of  the  other  three 
forrris ;  in  late  MHG.,  ent  has  found  its  way  into  the  other  forms 
by  a  reverse  process.  The  second  person  sing,  indie,  pret.  of  the 
strong  verb,  which  was  formed  after  a  peculiar  fashion  in  MHG.  {dii 
gcebe,  wceri)  is  altered  after  the  analogy  of  the  other  second  persons. 

158.  The  creative  effect  of  analogy  in  the  region  of  sound-sub- Analogy m 


stitution  has  hitherto  received  very  little  attention.  Sound-substi- ^''''"''"''°°' 
tution  is  in  the  first  instance,  as  we  have  seen,  an  effect  of  sound- 
change,  which  sets  in  when  a  similar  sound  or  group  of  sounds 
has  split  into  several,  in  consequence  of  different  conditions  of 
sound.  As  long  as  these  conditions  are  maintained,  and,  besides 
this,  no  disturbance  of  the  effects  of  the  sound-transformation 
comes  in  through  other  influences,  it  is  possible  that  the  forms 
which  have  arisen  through  the  process  of  sound-mutation  may 
arrange  themselves  into  proportion-groups  (see  examples,  p.  95). 


In  this  case  we  may  speak  of  the  sound-substitution  as  a  living  one 
If,  however,  the  conditions  disappear  which  caused  the  differen 
treatment  of  the  sound,  then  no  more  etymological  sound-propor 
tions  are  able  to  form  themselves ;  in  fact,  the  process  of  sound- 
substitution  is  petrified.  Thus,  for  instance,  the  change  betweer 
h  and  g  in  ziehen — zug,  gedeiken — gediegen,  is  conditioned  nc 
longer  by  relations  in  the  speech  of  the  present  day — the  reason 
which  originally  called  into  existence  this  substitution,  i.e.  the 
changing  Indo-European  accent,  has  long  been  put  out  of  account. 
The  change  between  hoher — hoch,  sehen — gesicht,  geschehen — 
geschichte,  coincides  no  doubt  with  a  change  of  the  position  within 
the  syllable;  but  seeing  that  in  most  cases  where  a  perfectly 
analogous  change  of  position  takes  place,  no  sound-substitution  any 
longer  occurs  (cf.  rauher — rauli,  sehen— sah  and  sieht,  geschehen, 
geschah,  and  geschieht),  this  change  is  likewise  dead.  It  is  differ- 
ent in  MHG.,  where  it  is  an  all-prevailing  principle  that  the  sound 
of  ser,ti)on  ch  answers  to  an  h  in  the  beginning  of  a  .syllable  where 
it  stands  after  the  sonant  of  the  syllable.  Thus  vsre  find  rdher 
— riich,  sehen — sach,  geschehen — geschach;  before  s  and  t  in  early 
MHG.  we  certainly  find  an  h  written  as  well  (as  in  sihst,  siht)  ;  while 
in  later  MHG.  we  find  it  likewise  denoted  by  ch  {sichst,  sicht). 

159.  The  material-sound  proportion -groups  are  productive,  it  will 
be  observed,  in  the  same  way  as  the  material-formal.  It  is  for  instance 
inconceivable  that  both  the  different  pronunciations  of  the  German 
ch  are  specially  learnt  by  each  individual  to  meet  each  special  case  ; 
rather  do  memory-impressions  and  creation-by-analogy  operate 
simultaneously ;  and,  indeed,  without  the  co-operation  of  the  latter 
the  invariability  in  the  change  between  both  which  actually  exists 
could  not  be  acquired. 

160.  The  operation  of  analogy  in  the  case  of  j««^^2-phenomena 
is  past  all  doubt.     What  would  on  any  other  hypothesis  be  the 

v.]  ON  ANALOGY. 


explanation  of  the  fact  that  in  French  the  final  consonants  s,  z,  t,  n 
are  treated  differently  according  as  the  word  connected  with  them 
begins  with  a  consonant  or  a  vowel  ?  It  is  no  doubt  possible  that 
a  quantity  of  such  combinations  as  nous  vendons — nous  aimons, 
2m  fils — un  ami,  have  perpetuated  themselves  by  memory  from 
generation  to  generation,  but  certainly  this  cannot  be  the  case 
with  nearly  all  that  come  into  use,  and  have  at  an  earlier  period 
done  so.  In  spite  of  this,  the  change  is  accurately  observed  even 
by  those  quite  unversedin  grammar,  and  in  the  case  of  any  new 
combination  at  will. 

i6i.  The  action  of  etymologico-phonetic  proportional  groups 
commonly  produces  such  forms  as  would  also  be  produced  by 
the  fundamental  sound-change.  Still  it  sometimes  happens 
that  new  forms  are  produced  which  would  be  impossible  ac- 
cording to  the  strict  law  of  sound-change.  The  reason  of  this 
is  either  a  reversal  of  the  proportions  not  properly  justifiable,  or 
a  confusion  of  the'  relations  by  means  of  later  sound-change. 

162.  The  sound-law  in  many  High  and  Middle  German  dialects 
holds  good  that  n  in  the  auslaut  of  syllables  has  disappeared,  but  has 
maintained  itself  at  the  end  of  the  word,  when  the  following  word 
commences  with  a  vowel,  and  it  has  transferred  itself  to  this  :  thus 
in  Swabian  %  ros  {ein  ross) — e-n  ob^t  {ein  abend),  i  diig  (  =  MHG.  ick 
tuon) — du^-n-i.  The  speakers  are  therefore  accustomed  to  find  an 
n  in  many  cases  apparently  intruding  between  a  vowel-ending  and 
a  vowel-commencement ;  and  in  consequence  of  this,  the  n  trans- 
fers itself  to  cases  where  in  the  older  time  no  n  existed.     Thus  in 

*  Cf.  Win- 

Switzerland*we  find  combinations  like  wo-n-i,   'where  \;'  s^-n-iE,^Az€sKer■ 
enzer  mun- 

•  SO  it  is ;'  wzg-n-g, '  how  a. ;'  so-n-g,  'so  a;'  bi-n-%m,  'by  him  ;'  tsu§-n-^m,'^^'^^^'i'^-  '!^' 
'to  him.'     The  same  phenomenon  meets  us  in  Swabia,  e.g.  in  the 

t  as  com- 

dialect  of  the  country  round  B.orh-!\bei-n-gm,  'by  them  ;'  zug-n-eng,'^^^^''^^° 
'  to  them  ;'  di  ma-n-i — dich  mag  ich,  Id-n-gms — lass  es  ihm,  '  leave  it  Kauffmann. 


»Schinoiier'  ^'^  him  ; '  ^^^z'-w-^wj — gib  es  ihin,  'give  it  him;'  while  similarly  in 

Bajyens,"'  Bavarian  Swabia,  and  in  a  neighbouring  portion   of  the  regular 
p- 134. 

Bavarian  zrea,*si-n-zs( = sie  ist,  wie-n-i—wie  ich,  etc.     In  the  Carin- 

K-irm.^      thian  dialect  we  also  find  b&-n-enk  =  bei  euch,\   In  the  old  Provencal 

^V'bck.,  p. 

xiii.  we  find  the  form  fon,  a  variant  of  fo,  formed  after  the  analogy  of 

jcycNeu.    '^'''^ — ^"-X  Under  this  head  comes  also  v  e.^^KKvcniKov,  so  far  as 

mann,Zeitsch.      .  ^         .       „       .  .^      , 

ram.fhu.     it  IS  not  ctymologically  justified. 

viii.  257.  ° 

163.  [Familiar  examples  of  this  transference  of  n  are  seen  in 
cases  like  newt  in  English  for  an  eft,  etc.j 

164.  The  same  law  which  holds  good  in  the  Alemannic  and 
Swabian  for  n  holds  good  in  Bavarian  for  r.  The  Bavarian,  there- 
fore, says  d^r  arm,  but  dejung;  ^r  is,  but  ^  hdt ;  meibru^d^r  od^ri, 

mdkrfp''"  but  2  0^^  mei  brugdg.^  In  consequence  of  this,  we  see  combina- 
141, "  sup.  ^JQj^g  ^^jgg  jjj^g  wig-r-i — wie  ich,  ge-r-^ — gehe  er,  da.  sig-r-i — da  sehe 
m'jI  Leifr  i'^f^^  kd^-r-i — kann  ich,  ag-r-i — abhin  =  hinab.\\  Correspondingly  we 
».«<;(.,  p.    gnd  MHG.  y^r^,  nilrd    ixom.  jd,   nu,+  d,  which  must  be  explained 

after  the  analogy  of  the  relation  dd  (from  an  older  ddr)  to  ddrane, 

wd  to  wdrane,  hie  to  hierane,  sd  to  sdrie. 

165.  Double  formations  in  the  phonetics  of  sentences  are  doubt- 
less the  domain  in  which  this  kind  of  analogical  creation  most 
commonly  manifests  itself.  But  it  is  not  confined  to  these.  If  in 
late  MHG.  after  the  final  e  is  dropped  from  zcehe,  geschahe,  hcehe,  etc., 
the  forms  zach,  geschcech,  hoech  take  their  rise,  we  must  probably  not 
suppose  a  transition  of  the  h  sound  into  ch  :  the  forms  have  rather 
attached  themselves  to  the  analogy  of  the  change  which  existed 
before  between  hoch — hohes,  geschehen—geschach,  etc.  It  will  be 
precisely  the  same  in  cases  like  sicht,  geschicht  (written  in  olden 
times  siht,  geschiht),  from  sihet,  geschihet. 



Phonet.,  p. 
86  sqg. 

ALL  linguistic  activity  consists  in  the  formation  of  sentences,  a  Sentence  , 
The  sentence  is  the  hnguistic  expression  or  symbol,  denot-  Linguistic 

.  Expression 

mg  that  the  combmation  of  several  ideas  or  groups  of  ideas  has  of  the 

,  -^  combination 

been  effected  m  the  mmd  of  the  speaker ;  and  is  at  the  same  time  of  several 

1  r  1       ■  t  ideas. 

the  means  of  reproducmg  the  same  combmation  of  the  same 
ideas  in  the  mind  of  the  hearer.  Any  narrower  definition  of  the 
sentence  than  this  must  be  rejected  as  insufficient.  Among  the 
common  errors  touching  the  essence  of  a  sentence,  we  must  reckon 
the  notion  that  it  must  contain  a  finite  verb.     Combinations  such  tcic.z.,^«M, 


,  as  omnia  prcBclara  rara ;'\suinmum   ius  suinma  iniuria ;^  trdume  \.^lt,  ^^ 
schdume  ;  I  a  liar  f — I    thank  YOU  ? — You   talk  to  ME  ? — are  in 
every  respect  sentences  as  good  as  The  man  lives  ;  he  is  dead. 

\6j.  We  possess  the  following  means  of  expressing  in  language  Means  of 

,  denoting  the 

the  combination  of  ideas :   (i)   The  juxtaposition  of  the   words  combina- 
which  correspond  to  the  ideas  by  themselves ;  (2)  the  order  of 

these   words ;    (3)    the   gradation    amongst    these   in   respect  to 

energy  of  utterance,  to  the  relative  strength  of  emphasis,  as,  Charles 

is  not  COMING — Charles  is  NOT  coming ;  (4)  the  modulation  of  the 

pitch — cf.,  Charles  is  coming,  as  spoken  in  a  mere  assertion,  and 

Charles  is  coming f — as  an  interrogative  sentence;  (5)  the  time, 

which  is  commonly  found  to  stand  in  close  correspondence  with 

the  energy  and  the  pitch  ;  (6)  link-words,  such  as  prepositions,, 


conjunctions,  and  auxiliary  verbs ;  (7)  the  inflexional  modifica- 
tion of  the  words,  whether  {a)  the  method  of  the  combination  be 
more  closely  defined  by  the  inflexional  forms  themselves  {fairi 
librum  dai),  or  (b)  the  connexion  between  the  words  be  denoted 
by  formal  agreement,  as  in  anima  Candida.  It  is  self-evident  that 
the  two  last  methods  have  only  been  able  to  shape  themselves 
gradually  by  means  of  a  somewhat  prolonged  historical  develop- 
ment, while  the  five  first-named  stand  at  the  disposal  of  the 
speaker  from  the  very  outset.  But  (2)  to  (5)  inclusive  are 
not  always  directly  determined  by  the  natural  course  of  the  ideas 
and  feelings  they  represent,  but  are  capable  of  a  traditional  de- 
velopment \cf.  the  method  of  distinguishing  homonyms  in  Chinese, 
by  lowering  or  raising  the  tone]. 

168.  The  way  in  which  the  ideas  are  capable  of  being  connected 
with  each  other  is  fixed  with  more  or  less  exactness  according  to 
the  frequency  and  definiteness  of  the  methods  employed.  It  is 
with  regard  to  the  method  of  combination,  just  as  with  respect  to 
the  single  idea.  The  linguistic  expression  for  this  does  not  need 
to  be  equivalent  to  the  psychical  relation  as  it  exists  in  the  mind  ■ 
of  the  speaker,  and  as  it  is  to  be  produced  in  the  mind  of  the 
hearer.  It  may  be  much  less  definite. 
Subject  and  1 69.  It  thus  happens  that  every  sentence  consists  of  at  least  two 

Psycho-  '  elements.  These  elements  are  related  to  each  other,  not  as  exact 
Gramm^  equivalcnts,  but  are  differentiated  according  to  their  function. 
They  are  termed  subject  and  predicate.  These  grammatical 
categories  repose  on  a  psychological,  a  logical,  relation.  No  doubt 
we  have  to  distinguish  between  the  psychological  and  the  gram- 
matical subject  or  predicate,  as  the  case  may  be— since  the  two 
do  not  always  correspond,  as  we  shall  presently  see  in  detail.  But 
still  it  remains  true  that  the  grammatical  relation  is  built  up  solely 
on  the  foundation  of  the  psychological. 




170.  The  psychological  subject  is  the  group  of  ideas  which  is 
first  present  in  the  consciousness  of  the  speaker  or  thinker;  with  this 
a  second,  the  psychological  predicate,  unites  itself.  The  subject  is, 
to  speak  with  Steinthal,  the  apprehending  portion  ;  the  predicate 
the  apprehended.  Von  der  Gabelentzi  is  quite  right  in  defining 
both  elements  from  the  point  of  view  of  the  hearer.  The  psycholo- 
gical subject,  according  to  him,  is  that  on  which  the  speaker  wishes 
to  make  the  hearer  think,  and  to  which  he  would  direct  his  obser-^ 
vation ;  the  psychological  predicate  that  which  he  wishes  him  to 
think  about  it.  Still,  such  definition  of  the  predicate  might  easily 
lead  to  an  erroneously  narrow  conception,  such  as  is  commonly 
current  in  our  grammars.  The  main  point  after  all  for  us  to 
remember  is  this,  that  one  idea  is  in  consciousness  connected  with 
the  other  idea, 

171.  We  are  accustomed  nowadays  to  attach  a  narrower  sense 
to  the  relationship  of  the  subject  to  the  predicate.  If  the  predicate 
is  a  noun,  we  demand  for  the  normal  structure  of  the  sentence 
that  it  should  either  be  identified  with  the  subject,  or  that  it  should 
denote  the  wider  conception  to  which  the  narrower  one  of  the  subject 
should  be  subordinated,  or  that  it  should  announce  a  quality  inher- 
ing in  the  conception  of  the  subject.  But  in  the  case  of  proverbs 
and  proverbial  expressions  relations  of  quite  another  nature  are 
expressed  by  the  grammatical  form  of  the  juxtaposition  of  subject 
and  predicate ;  take  such  expressions  as  one  man  one  vote ;  much 
cry  and  little  wool;  first  come  first  served;  a  word  to  the  wise; 
like  master  like  man;  better  aught  than  nought ;  in  Q&, gleiche 
briider gleiche  kappen;  vielfeind'  vielehr' ;  viele  kopfe  viele  sinne;  alter 
fuchs  alte  list;  klein  geld  kleine  arbeit ;  neuer  arzt  neuer  kirchhof ; 
heisse  bitte  kalter  dank  ;  kurz  gebet  tiefe  andacht ;  roter  bart  untreue 
art;  gevatter  Ubernzaun  gevatter  wider  herUber;  gliick  im  spiel  unglilck 

^  Zeitschrift fiir  volkerpsychologie,  vi.  378. 



inderliebe;  mit  gefangen  mit gekangen ;  friih  gesattelt  spat  geritten  ; 
allein  getan  allein  gebiisst :  correspondingly  in  other  IE.  languages, 
as  in  French  we  find  don  capitaine  bon  soldat ;  bonne  terre  mauvais 
chemin ;  longue  langue  courte  main;  brum  matinee  belle  journ^e ; 
froides  mains  chaudes  amours  ;  feves  fleuries  temps  de  folies  ;  soleil 
d  la  vue  bataille  perdue;  point  d' argent  point  de  Suisse,  etc. 
Certainly  we  are  accustomed  to  apprehend  such  sentences  as 
abbreviated  hypothetical  periods,  and  accordingly  to  set  a  comma 
between  the  two  component  parts :  but  the  fact  that  they  may  be 
paraphrased  by  a  hypothetical  period  (such  as  where  there  is  much 
cry  there  is  little  wool)  does  not  concern  us.  The  grammatical  form 
of  such  is  precisely  the  same  as  that  of  borrow  sorrow  ;  most  haste 
least  speed.  In  the  first  sentences  formed  by  children,  the  mere 
collocation  of  words  serves  for  the  expression  of  all  possible 

172.  Examples  taken  from  experience  are  given  by  Steinthal 
(Einl.  pp.  S34-6):  cf.papa  hat  =  papa  has  a  hat  on  ;  mamma  baba  = 
I  will  sleep  with  mamma.  Where  a  foreign  language  has  to 
be  employed,  with  which  the  speaker  is  only  imperfectly  ac- 
quainted, he  turns  in  his  need  to  the  same  primitive  method  of 
rendering  himself  intelligible,  and  is  understood,  supported  as  he 
is  by  the  situation.  He  says,  for  instance,  wine  table,  and  is  under- 
stood to  mean  that  he  wishes  the  wine  to  be  placed  on  the  table. 
The  conditions  which  cause  the  production  of  such  sentences,  and 
which  enable  the  hearer  to  guess  the  unexpressed  relation  of  the 
conceptions,  occur,  of  course,  not  merely  in  the  commencement  of 
each  man's  linguistic  activity,  or  in  that  of  mankind  generally  speak- 
ing, but  at  all  times.  If  they  come  to  be  employed  in  the  stages 
of  higher  development  only  in  a  limited  degree,  the  reason  of  this 
is  merely  that  more  perfect  means  of  expression  are  at  hand. 

173.  Originally  there  was  one  method,  and  one  only,  of  mark- 


ing  the  difference  between  subject  and   predicate — i.e.  stress  of  Means  of 
tone.      In  the  case  of  the  isolated   sentence,  the   psychological  ing  subject 
predicate  is  always  the  more  strongly  accented,  as  the  more  im-  cate : 

...ri  t  .    .  t  Kmphasis, 

portant  portion  of  the  sentence,  and  as  contammg  the  new  matter.  Position,  etc 
This  may  be  regarded  as  a  law  pervading  all  nations  and  all  ages. 
The  place  in  the  sentence  may  have  afforded  a  second  means  of 
distinction.  Von  der  Gabelentz,  in  the  treatise  mentioned  above 
(p.  376)  lays  it  down  that  the  order  subject-predicate  (both  regarded 
as  psychological  categories)  maybe  held  as  admitting  no  exceptions.'- 
This  view  does  not  seem  to  me  quite  correct.  In  pronouncing  judg- 
ment on  this  question,  we  must  leave  out  of  consideration  the 
language,  and  the  cases  in  which  a  strict  rule  has  been  laid  down  by 
tradition  for  the  position  of  the  grammatical  subject  and  predicate. 
We  may  only  cite  cases  in  which  both  may  change  their  place — 
cases  therefore  in  which  the  position  is  conditioned,  not  by  gram- 
matical, but  solely  by  psychological  rules.  The  view  held  by  Von 
der  Gabelentz,  that  a  preceding  grammatical  predicate  is  always  the 
psychological  subject,  no  doubt  meets  in  many  instances  the  case, 
as,  for  instance,  in  this  passage  from  Goethe  :  '  Weg  ist  alles,  was 
du  liebtest,  Weg,  warum  du  dick  betrUbtest,  Weg  dein  gliick  und 
deine  ruh.'  If,  however,  we  say  '  A  puff  of  wind  caught  the  hat, 
and  away  it  went',  we  cannot  possibly  take  away  as  a  psycho- 
logical subject.  In  the  same  way  there  exists  a  correspondence 
between  the  psychological  and  grammatical  subject  if,  in  reply  to 
the  remark,  'John  seems  a  sensible  man',  the  answer  should  be 
given,  "Tis  an  ass  that  he  is ;'  and  so  in  many  cases.  The  idea 
of  the  subject,  no  doubt,  always  precedes  in  the  consciousness  of 
the  speaker ;  but  as  soon  as  he  begins  to  speak,  the  more  significant 
idea  of  the  predicate  may  press  so  far  into  the  foreground  that  it 

1  Wegener,  on  the  other  hand  (p.  31  sqq.),  holds  the  precedence  of  the  predicate  to 
be  the  natural  order,  a  view  which  I  cannot  adopt.  \,Cf.  Herbert  Spencer's  Essay  on 
the  Philosophy  of   Style    for  a  discussion  of  the  question.] 


must  be  uttered  in  the  first  place,  and  the  subject  need  not  be 
added  till  afterwards.  This  often  occurs  when  the  idea  of  the 
subject  was  previously  present  in  the  conversation,  as  in  the  in- 
stances just  mentioned.  Then  the  person  addressed  has,  as  a 
general  rule,  while  he  is  hearing  the  predicate,  the  corresponding 
subject  in  his  mind,  which,  indeed,  may  as  well  remain  unex- 
pressed :  cf.,  '  What  is  John  ? ' — '  A  merchant!  But  even  when  the 
person  addressed  is  not  prepared  for  the  subject,  a  desire  to  pro- 
duce superior  emphasis  may  cause  the  predicate  to  come  to  the 
front.  The  speaker,  then,^in  his  eagerness  to  present  the  main 
idea,  holds  the  accurate  guidance  of  his  interlocutor  as  of 
secondary  importance  ;  and  it  does  not  occur  to  him  till  later 
that  such  guidance  is  necessary.  It  is  a  similar  psychological 
process  when  the  subject  is  expressed  at  first  by  a  pronoun, 
whose  relation  is  not  self-evident  to  the  person  addressed,  and 
is  not  expressed  more  definitely  till  later,  as.  She  is,my  dove, 
*Maud.  my  dear  (Tennyson);*/?^  sie  blind,  meine  Hebe  (Lessing);  sie 
hindert  nicht  allein  nicht,  diese  binde  (ib.) ;  was  fiir  ein  bild 
hinterldsst  er,  dieser  schwall  von  worten  (ib.)  ;  MHG.  wie  j&merliche 
ez  stdt,  daz  here  lant  (  Walth.  v.  d.  VOGELWEIDE) ;  si  ist  iemer  unge- 
^\S^',v^Zt.]Schriben,  diu  froude^die  si  hdten  (Hart.  v.  AUE)  ;  Fr.  elle  approche, 
cette  mart  inexorable}  It  is  clear  from  the  citations  given  above 
,  that  the  sentences  with  a  psychological  predicate  preceding  bear  a 
relationship  to  the  sentences  to  be  considered  afterwards,  in  which 
the  predicate  alone  is  expressed.  They  are  an  anomaly,  as  against 
the  custom  of  placing  the  subject  first,  which  obtains  in  less  pas- 
sionate narration  or  description  ;  but  they  are  an  anomaly  which 
still  cannot  be  disregarded,  and  an  anomaly  of  not  unfrequent 
occurrence.  Thus  the  position  of  the  words  cannot  be  regarded  as 
a  means  of  marking  the  separation  between  subject  and  predicate 
given  with  the  commencement  of  sentence-construction. 

^  See  other  examples  in  Wegener,  p.  41. 



174-  Just  as  single  words  may  possess  concrete  and  abstract  concrete  and 
significations,  so  may  sentences  as  well.  A  sentence  is  concrete  SentMcL 
when  one  of  the  main  members  of  it,  the  psychological  subject 
or  the  psychological  predicate,  is  concrete.  Normally  the  subject 
which  gives  the  sentence  its  concrete  nature  would  be  concrete. 
Concrete  and  abstract  sentences  do  not  need  to  be  different 
according  to  the  form  of  their  expression.  We  can  say  generally 
with  respect  to  the  nature  of  a  horse,  The  horse  is  swift,  just  as 
with  respect  to  some  particular  horse  we  can  say.  The  horse  is 
worthless :  and  the  different  nature  of  the  sentences  can  only  be 
told  by  the  connexion  and  the  situation.  In  the  first  sentence 
we  might  employ  a  plural  means  of  expression.  Horses  (or,  alt 
horses)  are  swift.  But  it  cannot  be  said  in  that  case  to  remain 
properly  abstract ;  for  '  all  horses '  must  mean  all  horses  which 
exist,  and  is  consequently  to  be  looked  on  as  a  concrete 
expression.  If  the  subject  is  concrete,  the  sentence  cannot  be 
abstract.  No  doubt  the  different  possibility  exists  that  the 
predicate  can  be  thought  of  as  something  simply  attaching  to 
the  subject,  something  stationary  or  repeating  itself,  or  as  some- 
thing attaching  itself  only  at  a  particular  time.  In  the  first  case 
there  exists  in  some  sense  a  middle  step  between  an  abstract  and 
a  concrete  sentence,  and  it  may  be  allowed  in  default  of  a  better 
to  employ  for  this  kind  of  sentences  the  expression  'abslxact- 
concrete.'  This  difference,  however,  does  not  require  to  be  met 
by  a  corresponding  difference  in  form  of  expression.  He  speaks 
quickly  may  denote  '  He  speaks  quickly  at  this  moment,'  and  '  He 
commonly  speaks  quickly ; '  He  is  lazy,  may  denote  a  fault  on 
a  given  occasion,  or  a  lasting  characteristic. 

175.  Our  assertion  that  two  members  at  least  go  to  make  up  Sentences ot 


a  sentence  seems   to  be  contradicted  by  the  fact  that  we  find  one  element 


sentences  consisting  of  only  a  single  word  or  of  a  group  forming  a 

ii8         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

unit.  The  contradiction  is  explained  by  the  fact  that  in  this  case 
iB  one  member  of  the  sentence  (as  a  rule  the  logical  subject)  is  taken 
for  granted  and  finds  no  expression  in  language.  It  may  be 
completed  from  what  has  been  said  before.  We  ought  specially 
to  notice  that  in  the  course  of  conversation  it  often  needs  to 
be  taken  from  words  of  the  other.  The  answer  commonly  con- 
sists of  a  predicate  alone ;  the  subject  is  either  contained  in  the 
question,  or  the  whole  question  is  the  logical  subject,  (i)  '  Who 
struck  you  ? ' — 'John.'  (2)  '  Was  it  you  f ' — '  Yes '  (No,  certainly, 
surely,  of  course).  Similarly  remarks  like  the  following  may  serve 
as  predicate  to  a  sentence  spoken  by  another,  Avowedly,  all  right, 
very  possibly,  strange  enough,  no  wonder,  nonsense,  stuff,  balderdash, 
etc.  In  other  cases,  it  is  the  object  of  perception  common  to 
speaker  and  hearer  alike — the  situation — that  forms  the  logical 
subject,  to  which  the  attention  may  be  still  more  pointedly 
directed  by  gestures.  This  object  of  perception  may  be  the 
speaker  or  the  person  accosted  ;  cf.,  your  servant,  most  obedient 
servant ;  all  right,  welcome  ;  so  sad  I  why  so  sad  f  Besides  these  we 
have  many  exclamations  of  astonishment  and  alarm  and  appeals 
for  aid,  like  fire  ! — thieves  ! — murder  ! — help  !  and  challenges, 
like  Friend  or  foe  ?  We  have  questions,  too,  like  Odd  or  even  ? 
— Right  or  left  ?  When  the  Prince  in  Lessing's  Emilia  begins 
with  Klagen,  nichts  als  klagen  !  Bittschriften,  nichts  als  bittschrif- 
ten ! — these  are  mere  predicates  :  the  subject  is  formed  by  the 
letters  which  he  takes  up  in  his  hand.  In  the  case  of  such 
sentences,  which  as  far  as  their  mere  expression  goes  consist  of 
j  a  single  member,  what  for  the  speaker  is  the  psychological  pre- 
dicate becomes  for  the  hearer  the  subject  instead.  For  the  man 
I  who,  on  seeing  a  house  on  fire,  calls  out  'Fire!'  the  situation  is 
the  subject,  and  the  common  idea  fire  is  the  predicate ;  on  the 
other  hand,  for  the  man  who  hears  'Fire!'  cried  before  he  him- 


self  sees  a  fire,  the  idea  of  fire  is  the  subject,  and  the  situation 
is  the  predicate.  There  may  also  occur  sentences  in  which,  for 
both  sides  alike,  what  is  uttered  is  the  subject,  and  the  situation 
is  the  predicate.  Supposing,  for  instance,  that  any  one  sees  a 
child  in  danger,  he  naturally  cries  out  to  the  person  entrusted 
with  its  custody  merely — 'The  child.''  Hereby  the  object  alone 
is  denoted  to  which  attention  is  intended  to  be  called — i.e.  the 
logical  subject :  the  predicate,  on  the  other  hand,  has  to  be 
gathered  by  the  person  addressed  from  what  he  sees,  if  he  follows 
the  direction  to  which  his  attention  is  called.  Or,  supposing 
that  one  of  two  companions  in  travel  remarks  that  the  other  has 
forgotten  his  umbrella,  the  mere  exclamation,  '  Your  umbrella ! ' 
is  quite  sufficient  to  make  the  latter  complete  the  predicate.  The 
vocative,  pronounced  as  such,  to  summon  or  warn,  or  entreat  any 
one,  or  to  call  his  attention  to  his  turn  of  action,  is  such  another 
sentence — lacking  a  verbal  predicate,  but  not  a  psychological 
one.  On  the  other  hand,  by  the  side  of  a  verb  in  the  second 
person  without  subject  pronoun,  the  vocative  may  be  appre- 
hended as  the  subject  to  this.  We  commonly  punctuate  '  Charles, 
come  ! '  and  '  Come,  Charles  1 ' — but,  on  the  other  hand,  '  You  come  I ' 
and  '  Come  you  1 '  and  yet  the  relations  are  in  the  two  cases  the 

176   This   is  the   place  to   determine   the  position  of  the  so- impersonal 

'  Verbs. 

called  impersonal  verbs.  It  is  a  much-disputed  question  whether 
these  are  to  be  regarded  as  lacking  a  subject  or  not.  A  critical 
discussion  of  the  current  views  upon  it  is  to  be  found  in  Miklosich's 
treatise,  Subjectlose  sdtze  (second  edition,  Vienna,  1883);  a  treatise 
by  Marty  in  the  Vierteljahrsschr.  f.  wissenschaftliche  philos.  viii. 
56  sq.,  is  chiefly  based  upon  Miklosich's  material. 

177.  In  order  to  answer  the  question  properly,  a  strict  division 
must    be  made  between   the  grammatical  form   and  the  logical 

120         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

relation    denoted    thereby.       If  we   regard   the   first   merely,   it 
cannot  be  doubted  that  sentences  like  es  rauscht ;  il  gele ;  Low 
Servian   vono  se   biyska  ('it   lightens')  have  a   subject.     But   all 
efforts  have  proved  fruitless  to  treat  this  es,  il,   vono,  as  a  logical 
subject,  and  to  give  it  a  definite  interpretation.     Again,   in  sen- 
tences like  the  Latin  pluit,  Greek  wet,  Sanscrit  varsati  ('  it  rains '), 
Lithuanian  sninga  ('  it  snows '),  we  may  assume  that  the  formal 
subject  is  not  wanting  ;  for  such  subject  may  be  contained  in  the 
verbal    termination   under   which   a   personal   he   or   she,  may  be 
understood.       It   might  certainly  be   said    for   the   opposite  view 
that  in  the    languages   in    question    the   third    person   can  stand 
also  by  the  side  of  an  expressed  subject  \z.s  Jupiter  pluit,  o  ZeO?  vet, 
etc.].^    But  it  is  impossible  to  prove  that  the  impersonal  did  not 
arise  before  this  form  of  applying  it.     It  seems  most  natural  in 
this  case  to  recognise  a  formal  subject.     It  is   with  the  personal 
ending  just  as  with  the  independent  pronoun.     The  sentence,  as 
it  is  brought  into  the  normal  form,  has   received  a  formal  subject 
which  has  nothing  to  do  with  the  psychological.     We  must  pre- 
suppose an  older  stage,  in  which  the  simple  verbal  stem  was  set 
down  ;  a  stage  which  is  actually  seen  in  Hungarian  at  the  present 
day,  where  the  third  person  singular  has  no  suffix  (see  Miklosich, 
p.  15).     And  we  can  form  a  lively  idea  of  this  stage  of  language 
after  the  analogy  of  the  sentences  just  discussed,  which  consist 
of  a  single  (not  verbal)  word.     These  are  really  and  truly,  as  far 
as  the  linguistic  expression  goes,  subjectless. 

178.  We  may  then  lay  it  down  that  the  psychological  subject 
is  as  little  expressed  in  the  sentence  it  is  hot  as  in  the  sentence /re. 
But  we  must  guard  against  being  misled  into  the  view  that  none 
exists.  In  this  case  too  we  have  a  junction  of  two  ideas.  On  one 
side  stands  the  perception  of  a  concrete  phenomenon,  on  the  other 
the  idea  of  burning  or  of  fire ;  an  idea  already  reposing  in  the 

['In  A.S.   we  find  passive  and  impersonal  verbs  employed  absolutely  with  no 
subject  expressed  or  understood :  cf.  Mason's  Eng.  Gram.,  p.  149.  Translator.] 


mind,  under  which  the  perception  in  question  may  be  ranged. 
The  word  fire  can  be  a  sentence  only  as  an  imperfect  expression 
for  the  connexion  of  these  two  elements.  It  is  conceivable  that  in 
the  case  of  the  verb  in  the  corresponding  application,  the  infinitive 
might  have  become  usual  instead  of  the  impersonal.  And  indeed 
the  infinitive  is  actually  employed  where  an  order  or  demand  is 
in  question.  For  instance,  as  a  word  of  command,  aufsitzen  stands 
on  the  same  plane  as  marsch !  and  psychologically  speaking  it  regarded  as  the  imperative  to  the  impersonal,  es  wird 
aufgesessen  \cf.  the  jussive  use  of  the  infinitive  in  ancient  Greek, 
and  in  modern  French  in  such  instances  as  voir,  pp.  lo  and  50], 

179.  Miklosich  and  Marty  dispute  the  existence  of  a  psycho- 
logical subject  for  impersonal  sentences.  They  hold  these  as 
true  sentences  composed  of  a  single  member  in  accordance 
with  Brentano's  psychology,  and  they  see  in  them  a  proof  of 
the  theory  that  the  logical  judgment  does  not  necessarily  con- 
sist of  two  members.  It  seems  that  Marty  was  brought  to  this 
view  partly  by  the  consideration  that  for  the  expression  of  per- 
ception in  a  concrete  sentence  linguistically  consisting  of  two 
members,  something  more  must  be  demanded  than  the  connexion 
of  the  two  members.  If  we  say,  for  example,  This  pear  is  hard, 
we  must  have  previously  brought  the  object  of  which  we  wish  to 
say  anything  under  the  common  category  of  pear,  and  the  quality 
which  we  have  remarked  as  attaching  to  it  under  the  common 
category  oi  hard.  We  must  thus,  in  order  to  pronounce  our  judg- 
ment, have  formed  two  additional  auxiliary  judgments.  Thus  one 
might  imagine  from  this  point  of  view  that  the  impersonal  sentence 
really  contains  no  more  than  the  predicate  of  a  normal  sentence ; 
and  as  the  latter  is  denoted  as  consisting  of  two  members,  it  then 
seems  but  commonly  consistent  to  denote  the  former  as  consisting 
of  one  member  only.     According  to  this  view,  however,  the  fact 


is  overlooked  that  what  in  one  case  was  nothing  but  an  auxiliary- 
judgment,  in  the  other  has  become  an  end  in  itself.  We  might 
with  equal  right  neglect  the  difference  which  exists  between  the 
member  of  a  sentence  the  mortal  vian,  and  the  sentence  man  is 
mortal.  But  under  all  circumstances  a  sentence  like  Fire,  it  is 
hot,  is  of  two  members.  1  It  is  hard  to  form  an  intelligible  idea 
of  judgments  consisting  of  but  a  single  member,  and  logicians 
should  not  cite  language  as  a  proof  of  the  existence  of  such : 
otherwise,  they  show  that  their  very  thoughts  are  dependent  on 
linguistic  expression — the  very  thing  from  which  they  ought  to 
seek  to  emancipate  themselves. 

1 80.  According  to  our  investigations  hitherto  pursued,  it  is 
clear  that  impersonal  sentences,  consisting  according  to  their 
linguistic  expression  of  a  single  member,  are  always  concrete, 
never  abstract.  For  their  very  object  and  end  is  to  produce  a 
concrete  intuition  with  a  common  conception. 
Negative  181.  If  we  have  defined  the  sentence  as  the  expression  for  the 


connexion  of  two  ideas,  negative  sentences  seem  to  contradict  this, 
since  they  rather  denote  a  separation.  Still,  such  a  separation 
finds  no  expression  unless  the  ideas  in  question  have  met  in  the 
consciousness  of  the  speaker.  We  may  define  the  negative  sentence 
of  affirmation  as  the  expression  of  the  fact  that  the  attempt  to 
establish  a  relation  between"  two  ideas  has  failed.  The  negative 
sentence  is  in  any  case  of  later  birth  than  the  positive.  Probably 
negation  finds  in  every  case  a  special  expression  in  language.  One 
might,  however,  very  well  imagine  that  negative  sentences  might 
be  formed  in  a  primitive  stage  of  development  of  language,  in 
which  the  negative  sense  might  be  indicated  by  nothing  else  than 
the  stress  and  the  accompanying  gestures. 
Sentences  of  182.  What  cau  Only  be  laid  down  as  a  possibility  in  the  case  of 
andDemand.  the  difference  between  positive  and  negative  sentences  is  certainly 

1  For  the  auxiliary  judgments  in  such  cases  obviously  consist  of  two  members. 



true  of  the  difference  between  sentences  of  assertion  and  sentences 
of  demand.  The  term  '  sentences  of  demand '  seems  appropriate 
as  the  most  neutral.  Under  the  term  demand  we  comprise  of  course 
requests,  commands  and  forbiddings,  advice  and  warning,  encour- 
agement, concession,  declining,  and  deprecating.  No  examples 
are  necessary  to  show  that  for  all  this  the  same  expression  of 
language  can  be  employed,  and  that  the  different  shades  of  mean- 
ing attaching  to  the  word  can  be  only  recognised  by  the  different 
tones  indicative  of  feeling.  We  must  however  add  to  these, 
sentences  implying  a  wish.  A  ivish  may  be  expressed  with  the 
expectation  that  its  utterance  may  have  an  influence  upon  its 
realisation  ;  then  it  is  equivalent  to  a  demand ;  but  it  can  equally 
vyell  be  uttered  without  any  such  expectation  at  all.  This  is  a 
difference  which  is  not  always  remarked  by  the  naive  consciousness 
of  a  child  or  uncivilised  man.  The  language  of  poetry,  and  indeed 
that  of  untutored  conversational  language,  finds  it  natural  to  raise 
mere  wishes  to  demands,  and  to  express  these  by  the  imperative. 
Willing  and  demanding  touch  one  another  even  more  in  con- 
junctive or  optative  forms  of  expression. 

183.  We  are  at  present  accustomed  to  regard  the  affirmation  as 
the  only  normal  sentence.  The  sentence  of  demand  is  however  as 
old,  if  not  older  than  this.  The  earliest  sentences  which  are  uttered 
by  children — the  very  earliest  of  course  consist  of  a  single  word  only 
— have  reference  to  their  needs.  They  serve  to  express  demands  , 
or  affirmations  made  to  indicate  a  need  which  requires  to  be  satis- 
fied. It  may  be  assumed  that  the  circumstances  were  similar 
at  the  earliest  stage  of  speech  development.  Thus  no  special 
linguistic  resource  was  needed  originally  to  characterise  the  sen- 
tence of  demand  ;  the  simple  correlation  of  subject  and  predicate 
sufficed  for  this  case  as  well  as  for  the  sentence  of  affirmation  ;  the 
stress  of  the  voice  was  the  only  means  by  which  the  difference 


could  be  told.  Even  now  we  employ  such  sentences  of  demand  in 
numbers  ;  sentences  in  which  the  demand  is  not  characterised  as 
such.  These  are  sentences  without  a  verb,  such  as :  Eyes  right ! — 
Attention  ! — Hats  off! — This  way  ! — All  aboard! — Joking  apart — 
An  eye  for  an  eye — Peace  to  his  ashes — A  health  to  all  good  lasses — 
Away  with  him — Here  with  it!  etc.  Then  there  are  sentences 
composed  of  a  single  member,  as  far  as  their  expression  in 
language  goes,  such  as :  Hush ! — Quick  I — Slow ! — Forwards ! — 
Up! — To  work! — Confusion!  etc.  Sentences  of  demand  especi- 
ally occur  in  this  primitive  form,  which  as  a  rule  does  not  hold 
good  for  sentences.  It  is  indeed  from  this  circumstance  that  the 
consequence  arises,  that  these  negative  sentences  may  be  imme- 
diately recognised  by  us  as  demands.  Still  there  are  instances 
which  are  capable  of  bearing  either  meaning,  as  '  Fire .' '  as  a  cry 
of  alarm  and  '  Fire .' '  as  a  word  of  command. 

184.  Besides  this,  instead  of  a  definite  characteristic  form  of  the 
verb,  a  form  essentially  indefinite  may  be  employed  for  demands. 
Thus,  the  past  participle,  as  in  German  rosen  auf  den  weg  gestreut, 

"luMcare!"'  '^^^^^  harms  vergessen  (Holty),*/«  die  welt,  in  die  freiheit  gezogen 
(Schiller).  The  infinitive  is  more  common  still ;  cf.  the  German 
use  of  absitzen,  schritt  fahren  [and  that  of  the  French  voir,  where 
we  say  see  (see  p.   121)].     In    Italian   the   infinitive  is  usual   in 

\]^rSkio  negative  prohibitions— as  non  ti  cruciare  ;-\ and  the  same  usage  is 
common  in  Roumanian,  Provengal,  and  Old  French.  Cf.  Diez, 
iii.  212;  [Gospel  of  Lyons :  Es  biens  dou  monde  ne  te  croire ;  i.e. 
Ne  crois pas  en  les  biens  du  monde.]  Jolly  {Geschichte  des  infin.,  pp. 
158-209)  would  explain  these  infinitives  by  the  original  dative 
function  of  the  infinitive,  and  this  explanation  must  be  held  to 
account  for  the  imperative  use  of  the  infinitive  in  Greek.  But  the 
usage  in  German  and  Roumanian  is  of  modern  origin,  and  must  not 
be  connected  with  conditions  which  tool*  their  origin  in  IE.  times, 


the  consciousness  of  which  had  long  passed  away  from  the  instinct 
of  language.  For  the  epoch  in  which  this  usage  has  grown  up  the 
infinitive  is  nothing  more  than  the  denomination  of  the  verbal 
conception  per  se ;  and  hence  these  infinitive  sentences  are  to  be 
placed  upon  the  same  plane  as  sentences  like  '  March  t'  It  is 
noteworthy  that  the  second  person  singular  of  the  IE.  imperative 
exhibits  the  pure  tense  stem  (Xe'ye). 

185.  The  interrogative  sentences  are  commonly  ranged  as  a  interrogative 

,  Sentences. 

third  class  by  the  side  of  the  sentences  of  affirmation  and  demand.' 
No  single  principle  can,  however,  be  found  for  such  a  triple 
division  of  sentences,  and  these  three  classes  cannot  be  co-ordi- 
nated with  each  other.  We  must  rather  assume  a  double  method 
of  division  into  two.  The  sentences  of  affirmation,  as  well  as 
those  of  demand,  have  their  pendant  in  interrogative  sentences ; 
cf.  the  Latin  quid  faciam  with  quid  facio  ?  We  employ  the 
term  'deliberative  questions'  to  express  this  use,  but  we  might 
designate  them  simply  as  interrogatory-demand  sentences. 

186.  Of  the  two  main  divisions  of  the  questioning  sentence, 
that  in  which  a  single  member  of  a  sentence  is  called  into  question  j 
is  certainly  of  later  origin  than  that  in  which  the  whole  sentence  is  ! 
questioned.^  The  former  requires  a  special  interrogative  pronoun 
or  adverb  which  is  not  required  by  the  second.  The  interrogative 
is  in  the  IE.  languages  indefinite  as  well.  There  seems  to  be  no 
criterion  by  which  we  may  decide  which  is  the  original  of  these 
two  functions.  To  suppose  the  latter  to  have  taken  its  origin 
from  the  former  causes  no  difficulty.      But  the  reverse  process 

iCf.  for  what  follows,  Imme,  Die  fragesatze  nach  pydwlogischen  gesichtspunktcn 
eingeteilt  und  erlautert.     Cleve,  1879,  p.  81. 

^  No  one  has  yet  succeeded  in  discovering  a  perfectly  satisfactory  terminology  for 
these  two  kinds.  Delbriick,  SF.,  p.  75.  calls  the  former  '  verdeutlichungsfragen  ; '  the 
second  'bestatigungsfragen.'  Imme,  u.  ..  i.  15,  adopts  the  second  term,  and  replaces 
the  former  by  'bestimraungsfragen.'  It  appears  to  me,  however,  that  the  expression 
'  bestatigungsfragen '  is  unsuitable,  as  it  includes  the  expectation  of  an  affirmative  answer. 


is  conceivable,  and  thus  we  should  have  a  path  from  the  older 
form  of  interrogative  sentence  to  the  later  form.  To  the  question 
'  1st  j'emand  da?' — we  may  answer  '(/«)  der  vater,'  or  '{Nein) 
niemand.'  Now  if  we  discard  our  usual  method  of  framing  an 
interrogatory,  'Jemand  ist  daf — the  point  where  this  touches 
'  Wer  ist  da?'  is  obvious.  Questions  with  an  interrogative  pro- 
noun stand  even  nearer  to  questions  with  an  indefinite  pronoun 
in  cases  where  a  negative  answer  is  looked  for  as  the  natural  one ; 
cf. :  Who  will  do  that  ? —  Will  any  one  do  that  ? —  What  can  I 
answer? — Can  I  answer  anything? — Where  is  such  a  vtan  to  be 
found? — Is  such  a  man  anywhere  to  be  found? 

187.  The  question  to  which  the  simple  answer  yes  or  no  is 
expected  is  in  many  languages  characterised  by  a  special  particle, 
in  the  Teutonic  and  Romance  languages  by  the  position  of  the 
words.  Thus — ne  in  Latin  \li  in  Russian]  serves  to  mark  an 
interrogation.  But  the  interrogative  position  of  words  is  not 
confined  ab  initio  to  the  interrogative  sentence.  We  find 
it,  for  instance,  in  OHG.,  OS.,  and  AS.,  commonly  in  the  sentence 
of  affirmation  ;  cf.  :  verit  denne  stuatago  in  lant,  holoda  inan 
truhtln,  etc. 

188.  Accordingly  the  interrogation  was  not  to  be  recognised 
by  the  position  alone,  and  the  interrogative  stress  was  the  only 
decisive  characteristic  whereby  it  differed  from  affirmation.  We 
have  at  the  present  day  interrogations  in  which  this  stress  or  tone 
is  the  only  criterion,  namely,  those  which  contain  no  verb ;  cf.  : 
Any  one  there?— All  ready?— A  glass  of  beer.  Sir?  (spoken  by 
a  waiter) ;  in  French,  Votre  dhir?    [Monsieur  desire?] 

189.  We  can  thus  easily  imagine  that  there  may  have  been 
/  long  sentences  before  any  other  determining  method  was  found  for 

them  besides   the   interrogative   tone.      It   thus   seems   that   the 
interrogative   form  of  the   sentence   is   possible   even  in  a  quite  ] 


primitive  stage  of  language,  though  it  must  be  regarded  as  more 
recent  than  the  assertive  and  demanding  forms. 

ipo-  The  interrogation  pure  and  simple  occupies  in  some  ways 
a  half-way  position  between  positive  and  negative  assertion.  It  is 
neutral  in  the  sense  that  it  can  make  no  essential  difference 
whether  it  be  cast  in  a  positive  or  negative  form,  except  that  the 
positive  form  is  naturally  taken  in  preference  as  the  simpler,  and 
the  negative  form  assumes  the  function  of  expressing  a  modi- 
fication of  the  question  pure  and  simple. 

191.  There  are,  in  fact,  various  modifications,  whereby  the 
interrogation  can  be  more  or  less  made  to  approach  the  character 
of  the  assertive  sentence.  It  may  thus,  for  instance,  become  a 
dubious  assertion,  in  which  one  is  disposed,  at  the  outset,  to  a 
definite  assumption,  and  expects  nothing  but  a  final  confirmation 
from  another.  In  this  case  the  negative  interrogatory  form 
comes  in  where  a  positive  answer  is  expected — Were  you  not 
there  f  I  thought  I  ^aw  you.  It  makes  no  essential  difference  as 
far  as  the  sense  goes,  if  we  employ  instead  of  this  the  positive 
assertive  form,  with  a  tone  of  query — You  were  there? — You  are 
contented?  Thus  we  may  arrive  at  this  intermediate  stage  from 
both  sides. 

192.  The  circumstances  attending  the  expression  of  admira- 
tion or  surprise  are  similar  to  these.  Surprise  is  the  subjective 
incapacity  to  take  in  one  collection  of  ideas  by  means  of  another, 
in  spite  of  an  external  instigation  to  do  so,  whether  this  proceed 
from  one's  own  observation  or  from  the  suggestion  of  another. 
For  this  again  we  may  employ  either  the  interrogative  form,  or 
the  assertive  form,  with  the  interrogatory  tone — Is  Francis  deadf 
— Francis  is  really  dead? — Are  you  here  again? — You  are  here 
again  ?  Sentences  without  a  verb  are  neutral  in  this  respect : 
—  You    my  long   lost  brother ?— What,   THAT    to   UK? — Already 


here  ? — So  soon  f  And  infinitival  clauses  are  similarly  used,  as, 
He  to  turn  out  such  a  rascal !  Expressions  of  surprise  also  occur 
in  which  the  psychological  subject  and  predicate  are  connected  by 
'■and',  as  in  German — So  jung  und  schon  so  verderbtf — A  maid, 
♦Henry VI., ^;2^  l,g  ^q  martial f  (Shakespeare.)*  The  expression  of  surprise 
is  weakened  into  a  mere  formula  wherewith  to  introduce  a  con- 
versation ;  of.:  Ausgeschlafen? — So  vergnugtf — Noch  immer  bei 
der  arbeitf  etc.  [As  we  might  ask  in  English,  A  good  napf — 
Always  in  good  spirits  ? — As  merry  as  ever?  etc.] 

193.  A  special  case  is  to  be  noted  in  the  surprised  or  indignant 
repudiation  of  an  assertion.  For  this  the  primitive  form  of 
expression  without  any  finite  verb  is  specially  common  :     fa  liar? 

glr,^-"""-^^  w«^  bezahlenf  Latin— ^^^  lanistaf  (ClC.)t  French— ifi?/ 
ill.  ■'  ^'  vous  abandonner  f  Italian — lo  dir  bugie  ?%  English — She  ask 
X  Inf.  li.  31.  '^^  pardon  ? — How  ?  not  know  the  friend  that  served  you  f 
Besides  this  the  indignant  repudiation  of  advice  tendered  occurs, 
as  in  such  cases  as,  Ich  dich  ehren  ?  (GoETHE.)  A  sentence  such 
as  this  must  probably  be  reckoned  amongst  the  interrogatory 

194.  Of  course  the  provocation  to  an  interrogation  is  originally 
a  need  felt  by  the  interrogator.  There  are,  however,  questions — of 
course  of  later  origin — in  which  the  proposer  of  the  questions 
has  no  doubt  about  the  natural  answer,  and  merely  wishes  to 
give  the  person  addressed  occasion  to  find  it  out  for  himself. 
Such  cases  are  questions  put  by  teachers  to  the  taught.  If  a 
hint  is  added  as  to  the  nature  of  the  answer  expected  by  the 
interrogator,  we  have  the  class  of  questions  commonly  described 
by  the  vague  term  rhetorical.  The  interrogator  by  the  process 
compels  the  person  addressed  to  admit  a  truth  on  the  strength 
of  his  own  conviction  gained  after  consideration  ;  and  thereby 
the   process   is    brought    home   to   him    more   emphatically   and' 



energetically  than  it  would  have  been  if  merely  communicated 
to  him. 

195.  The  relation  of  subject  and  predicate  in  the  wide  sense  Extension 
indicated  above  is  the  relation  from  which  the  other  syntactic  con- ttn*^^'°' 
ditions  take  their  rise,  with  one  sole  exception,  namely,  the  copula- 
tive connexion  of  several   elements  into  a  single   member   of  a 
sentence.    This  connexion  may  in  the  case  of  developed  languages 

be  denoted  by  a  particle,  but  the  mere  collocation  in  succession 
suffices,  and  thus  we  cannot  be  surprised  that  in  a  primitive  stage 
of  language  it  was  found  possible  to  dispense  with  any  special! 
linguistic  expression  for  coupling. 

196.  Every  other  mode  of  extending  sentences  is  effected  by  a  Double 
recurrence  of  the  relation  between  subject  and  predicate.  Two  °  ^"'' 
main  cases  may  be  distinguished.  It  may  either  happen  that  two 
members  unite  themselves  as  contemporaneous  with  a  third  — «.g. 
that  two  subjects  attach  themselves  to  a  single  predicate  or  two 
predicates  to  a  single  subject,  which  might  be  represented  by  the 
formula  («  +  {b)  +  c).  Or  a  connexion  of  subject  and  predicate 
may  present  itself  as  subject  or  predicate  in  relation  to  a  further 
member,    a   case   which   might    be   represented    by   the   formula 

{a  +,^)  +  c.  This  further  member  may  of  course  be  compounded 
again.  Suppose  that  in  the  first  case  the  logical  relation  of 
the  two  subjects  to  the  common  predicate,  or  that  of  the  two 
predicates  to  the  common  subject,  is  exactly  alike,  then  such  a 
sentence,  consisting  of  three  members,  may  be  replaced  without 
any  essential  change  in  the  sense,  by  one  of  two  members,  one 
of  which  will  be  a  copulative  combination.  From  this  there  arise 
points  of  contact  between  these  two  kinds  of  sentence  and  con- 
fusions between  the  two.  The  double  member  of  a  sentence 
seems  most  neatly  parted  from  the  copulative  combination  forming 
a  single  member,  when  the  pair  of  members  take  between  them 



a  member  common  to  both  without  the  employment  of  a  copu- 
lative particle ;  this  is  the  so-called  construction  airo  kolvov,  a 
construction  common  enough  in  MHG. ;  cf.:  Dd  spranc  von  dem 
gesidele  her  Hagene  alsd  sprach.  Should  we  however  say,  Da 
spranc  vom  sitze  Hagen  und  sprach  so,  we  have  at  once  a  transition 
stage  from  a  double  predicate  to  a  single  compound  one.  Not, 
however,  that  the  two  predicates  are  really  conceived  as  one,  as  is 
manifest  from  the  fact  that  the  predicate  regularly  stands  in  the 
singular  after  such  double  subject,  as  in  German :  Der  mann  ist 
tot  und  die  frau  ('  The  man  is  dead  and  so  is  the  woman ').  In 
the  older  stage  of  the  language  they  were  apprehended  as  one  if  a 
further  predicate  still  was  subjoined  ;  cf. :  Petrus  aber  antwortete 
und  die  Apostel  und  sprachen  (Lu.),  a  case  in  which  we  now  have 
to  supply  a  new  subject. -"^  The  instinct  of  language  is  much  less 
decided  when  the  two  members  are  not  thus  separated  by  any 
insertion.  In  that  case  it  is  just  as  possible  to  assume  several 
members,  successively  connected  with  the  different  members  of 
the  sentence,  as  it  is  to  assume  a  compound  sentence  united  by  a 
single  act.  The  first-named  way  of  apprehension  is  less  obvious 
when  the  couple  of  members  of  the  sentence  is  placed  at  the 
beginning  than  when  they  are  placed  at  the  end.  The  vacillation 
in  the  instinct  of  language  manifests  itself  in  the  fact  that  where 
several  subjects  are  present,  of  which  the  one  standing  last  is  a 
singular,  the  predicate  can  stand  as  well  in  the  plural  as  in  the 
singular.  Where  the  predicate  comes  at  the  end  we  feel  ourselves 
nowadays  compelled  to  employ  the  plural,  but  in  Latin  the 
singular  is  equally  permissible — cf. :  Speusippus  et  Xenocrates  et 
"sf"'''"'  Polemo  et  Grantor  nihil  ab  Aristotele  dissentit  (ClC.)  ;*  Consu/es, 
•  •  praetores,  iribzini  plebis,  senatns,  Italia  cuncta  semper  a  vobis  depre- 

^''  cata  est  (ClC.);fflia  atque  uniis  e  filiis  captus  est  (Caes.)  ;  even  Et 

Jiv.  17, 3-  ego  et  Cicero  mens  flagitabit  (CiC.   ad  Att.).t   So   in    Italian,   Le 

['  Cf.  Gedaliah  who  with  his  brethren  and  son  were  twelve  (i  Ckron.  xxv.  q).] 


ricchezze,  gli  honori  e  la  virtic  e  stimata  grande  ;   in  French,  Le 

fer,  le  bandeau,  la  flamme  est  toute  prite  (Racine)  ;*  and  thus  in  *  Diez.,  p. 


old  Modern  High-German,  Wolken  und  dunkel  ist  um  ihn  her 
(Lu.) ;  dass  ihre  steine  und  kalk  sugerichtet  wurde  (Lu.). 

197.  The  logical  relation,  however,  of  two  subjects  to  the  same 
predicate  may  also  be  of  different  natures.  In  this  case  we  have 
the  foundation  laid  for  the  possibility  of  the  differentiation,  in 
the  course  of  the  development  of  language,  of  the  double  subjects 
into  subject  and  object.  We  can  best  portray  this  process  by  one 
sentence,  like  /  smell  the  dinner.  We  can  say  equally  well,  omit- 
ting the  personal  subject.  The  dinner  smells  ;  and  we  are  thus  able 
to  transport  ourselves  in  fancy  back  to  a  time  in  which,  owing  to 
the  complete  absence  of  all  case-suffixes,  and  of  anything  to  fix  the 
position  of  the  words  in  a  sentence  like  /  smell  dinner — A  dinner 
smell  I — the  words  /  and  dinner  fell  under  the  same  common 
category  of  the  psychological  subject.  The  affinity  between  sub- 
ject and  object  is  also  evident  from  the  fact  that  the  object  can  be 
made  the  subject  by  turning  the  verb  into  the  passive. 

198.  The   object — to  take   the   word   in   the  widest   possible  DouUe 


seijse — may  again  include  very  different  logical  relations.  Here 
again  many  objects  may  be  attached  to  the  same  predicate,  either 
in  the  same  or  in  a  different  logical  relation.  By  this  means  the 
impulse  is  given  to  a  grammatical  differentiation  of  the  object 
corresponding  to  the  logical  relation  (Accusative,  Dative,  Genitive 
of  the  object,  etc.). 

199.  The  object  may  be  conceived  of  by  the  side  of  the  subject  as 
a  third  member  of  the  sentence  of  equivalent  value  with  it.  It  may, 
however,  equally  well  enter  into  a  nearer  relation  to  the  predicate /][g 
than  that  occupied  by  the  subject,  so  that  a  sentence  of  two  mem- 
bers takes  the  place  of  one  of  three  members,  the  object  forming 
one  member  in  unison  with  the  predicate,  in  such  a  way  that  it 


stands  in  subordination  to  it  and  serves  to  define  it.     There  is  no 
sharply  defined  border-line  between  these  two  relationships. 

200.  Just  as  the  predicate  may  receive  a  defining  word  subor- 
dinated to  itself,  so  may  the  subject  and  the  object  which  is 
developed  therefrom.  Substantival  and  adjectival  attributes  com- 
monly stand  us  in  the  place  of  such  defining  words,  and  genitives 
of  substantives,  though  substantives  and  adverbs  connected  by 
means  of  prepositions  sometimes  do  the  same.  The  aid  of  these 
different  methods  of  definition  renders  it  possible  to  express  to 
some  extent  even  in  language  the  difference  of  the  logical  relation 
between  the  defining  factor  and  the  defined.  A  language  which 
has  yet  developed  no  inflexion  and  no  connecting  words  is  not  yet 
in  a  position  to  do  this.  Such  a  language  has  no  other  resource 
but  the  simple  juxtaposition  of  the  defined  matter  and  the 
defining  word.  The  fact  that  the  determinant  attached  to  the  sub- 
ject is  not  a  predicate,  can  then,  in  case  no  fixed  order  of  the 
words  has  become  normal,  be  only  discovered  by  the  presence  of  a 
third  word,  which  is  detached  from  the  two  words  which  together 
make  up  the  subject  by  a  more  decided  stress,  and  it  may  be  by  a 
slight  pause.  The  relation  of  the  determining  element  to  that  deter- 
mined is  analogous  to  that  of  the  predicate  to  the  subject  in  the 
broad  sense  in  which  we  have  apprehended  it  above.  And  in  truth 
the  determinant  is  nothing  but  a  degraded  predicate,  not  uttered  or 
spoken  for  its  own  sake,  but  merely  in  order  that  a  further  predi- 
cate may  be  assigned  to  the  subject  (or  object).  Just  as  the 
determination  of  the  predicate  has  its  origin  in  sentences  containing 
a  double  subject,  so  the  determination  of  the  subject— and  accord- 
ingly that  of  nouns  in  general— has  its  origin  in  sentences  con- 
taining a  double  predicate. 

20 1.  We  can  most  readily  appreciate  the  degradation  of  the 
predicate  to  a  mere  determination  in  cases  where  a  finite  verb  is 



affected  by  them.  We  meet  here  with  a  process  which  has  grown 
up  spontaneously  in  different  languages  and  at  different  epochs, 
and  which  is,  indeed,  to  some  extent  to  be  traced  historically. 
The  starting-point  is  afforded  by  the  construction  airo  kolvov 
spoken  of,  p.  130. 

202.  In  this  process  one  of  the  two  predicates  may  be  logically 
subordinated  to  the  other,  so  that  it  may  be  replaced  by  a  relative 
sentence.!  This  usage  is  found  in  OHG.  and  in  MHG. ;  c/.:  mit 
ziihten  si  ze  Mse  bat  ein  frouwe  saz  darinne  ( = '  a  lady  who  had 
her  dwelling  therein'),  wer  was  ein  man  lac  vorme  Grdlf  (  =  who 
lay  before  the  Graal),  die  worhte  ein  smit  hiez  Volcdn  (  =  named 
Vulcan);  nist  man,  thoh  er  uuolle,  thaz  gumisgi  al  irzelle  (  =  there 
is  no  man,  who,  even  if  he  wished  it,  could  completely  count  the 
number  of  human  beings).  A  case  depending  on  the  main  verb 
may  also  serve  as  the  subject  of  the  dependent  verb :  thus  von 
einem  slangen  was  gebimden  (the  title  of  a  fable  of  Bonar)  :  ich  hab 
ein  sUiit  ist  wider  euch  (H.  Sachs) ;  dar  inne  sack  er  glitzen  von 
Men  rot  ein  glut  wart  auf  sein  fallen  (which  waited  for  his  fall,  ib). 
This  construction  becomes  more  frequent  towards  the  close  of  the 
middle  ages  than  before.^  The  corresponding  usage  in  English, 
Swedish,  and  Danish,  has  gained  a  far  larger  area ;  cf.  the  follow- 
ing examples  from  Shakespeare  : — '  There  is  a  devil  haunts  thee,' 

'  On  this  phenomenon  a  considerable  literature  exists :  cf.  especially  J.  Grimm, 
Ueber  einige  falle  der  attraction  (A7.  sch7:  3.  312  sqq.);  Steinthal,  Assimilation  und 
Attraction  (Zschr.  f.  volkerps.  i.  93  sqq.  =  Kl.  schr.  107  sqq.  ;  cf.  especially  p.  \Tisqq.  ; 
Tobler,  Ueber  auslassung  und  vertretung  des  pronomen  relativum  (Germ.  xvii.  257  sqq.) ; 
Jolly,  Ueber  die  einfachste  form  der  hypotaxis  im  idg.  (Curtius,  Studien  vi.  217) ;  Kolbing, 
Untersuchungen  iiber  den  ausfall  des  relativpronomens  in  den  germanischen  spiachen, 
Strassburg,  1872  ;  Erdmann,  Syntax  Otfrids,  ii.  p.  124  sq. ;  Behaghel,  Asyndetische 
parataxe  {Germ.  xxiv.  167  sqq.) ;  Lohmann,  Ueber  die  auslassung  des  englischen  relativ- 
pronomens (Anglia,  iii.  115  sqq.).  In  some  of  these  writings  we  find  conclusions  widely 
differing  from  those  given  above.  I  have  deemed  it  unnecessary  to  state  my  reasons  for 
disagreeing  with  these,  as  it  seems  to  me  that  the  correctness  of  the  views  which  I  have 
adopted,  those  of  Jolly  and  Behaghel,  must  be  sufficiently  evident  to  all  who  are  not 
slaves  to  their  own  instinct  of  language  and  traditional  grammar. 

^  [The  usage  is  found  in  nhg.  as  vyell,  cf.  der  junge  GSthe,  ii.  p.  270  Gegen  Frank- 
furt liegt  ein  Ding  iiber,  heisst  Sachsenhausen]. 


'  it  is  thy  sovereign  speaks  to  thee,'  '  here  are  some  will  thank  you,' 
♦M.  of  V.I.  'I  have  a  mind  presages  me,'*  'it  is  not  you  I  call  for,'  'you  do 
not  meet  a  man  but  frowns'  {Cymb.  I.,  i.  i). 

203.  In  the  examples  hitherto  cited,  the  common  clause  stood 
in  the  middle.  There  occur  in  OHG.  cases  as  well,  in  which  it 
takes  precedence,  or  is  inserted  between  the  first  predicate  and  its 
determinations.  In  this  use  it  may  serve  as  subject,  or  as  object, 
or  as  any  other  kind  of  adverbial  determination  ;  and  further,  it 
need  not  necessarily  bear  the  same  relation  to  both  predicates. 
Under  this  head  will  come  cases  like  these  passages  quoted  from 
Otfrid,  where  the  second  predicate  is  subordinated — e.g. :  thaz  selba 
sie  into  sagetun  sie  hiar  bifora  zelitun  ('  They  said  the  same  thing 
to  him  that  they  had  said  before ')  ;  uuer  ist  thes  hiar  thenke  ('  Who 
is  there  that  could  here  think  such  a  thing ')  ;  nist  mati  nihein  in 
uuorolti  thaz  saman  al  irsageti  ('  There  is  no  one  in  the  world  who 

oa'pnmer  could  Say  all  that  together  ').t  The  first  predicate  is  subordinated 
in  the  following  case  :  in  selben  uuorton  er  then  ma7i  tho  then  eriston 
giuuan  so  uuard  er  hiar  fon  thesemo  firdamnot  ('  by  the  same 
words  with  which  he  overcame  the  first  man,  was  he  condemned 
by  the  other ').  In  a  sentence  like  this,  so  resumes  the  words  in 
selben  worton,  as  it  may  resume  any  given  element  of  a  sentence. 
In  another  case  the  common  element  of  the  sentence  is  resumed  by 
a  pronoun  :  alio  uuthi  in  uuorolti  thir  gotes  boto  sageti,  sie  quement 
sd  gimeinit  ubar  thin  houbit. 

204.  The  construction  a-no  koivov  is  most  frequently  found  in 
OHG.,  in  sentences  containing  general  statements,  especially  where 
these  are  negative,  with  a  conjunctive  dependent  verb.  This  con- 
struction is  not  unknown  to  the  Romance  languages  •,^  cf.:  Old 

,  Italian,  non  vi  rimasse  un  sol,  nan  lacrimassi;  prov.  una  non  sai,  vas 

vos  non  si'  aclina,  anc  non  vi  dona  tan  mi  plagues  ;  Old  French  or 
n'a  baron,  ne  li  envoit  son  fil.    (Li  romans  de  Raoul  de  Cambrai). 

1  Cf.  Diez,  iii.  381. 
['  For  numerous  instances  of  this  use,  very  common  in  Elizab.  Eng.  Abbott  §  224.] 



205.  If  we  examine  dispassionately  the  testimony  of  history, 
we  shall  find  the  view  untenable  that  this  construction,  wherever 
found,  is  a  traditional  inheritance  from  the  IE.  original  language. 
On  the  contrary,  it  seems  probable  that  it  has  likewise  sprung 
into  existence  spontaneously  in  later  epochs,  although  other 
more  perfect  forms  of  expression  had  already  been  created.  Out- 
side the  IE.  family  of  languages  it  is  found  (for  instance)  in 
Arabic,  where  we  meet  with  expressions  like, '  I  passed  by  a  man 
slept ;'  cf.  Steinthal,  Haupttyp.  267. 

206.  If,  then,  the  finite  verb  could  be  degraded  to  the  value  of 
an  attributive  determinant,  how  much  more  easily  could  a  pre- 
dicate be  so  degraded,  which  hitherto  bore  no  distinguishing 
marks  of  its  verbal  character?  The  origin  of  the  attributival 
relation  is  accordingly  quite  clear. 

207.  With  regard  to  the  function  of  the  deternjination,  we 
have  to  notice  certain  differences  which  commonly  find  no  expres- 
sion in  language,  but  which  are,  nevertheless,  logically  of  very 
great  importance.  The  determinant  may  leave  unaltered  the 
extent  of  the  meaning  which  the  word  serving  as  the  subject  has 
independently,  or  in  virtue  of  a  limitation,  already  imposed  by 
other  means,  the  determinant  itself  applying  to  this  whole  extent : 
cf. :  der  sterbliche  mensch,  der  allmdchtige  gott,  das  starve  eis  ;  it  may, 
however,  on  the  other  hand,  if  it  applies  to  a  part  only  of  what 
is  contained  in  the  usual  or  already  otherwise  specialised  meaning 
of  the  word,  narrow  and  individualise  it ;  cf:  old  houses,  an  old 
house,  a  {or'' the)  sou  of  the  king,  the  journey  to  Paris,  Charles  tJie 
Great :  in  the  same  way,  '  the  old  house,'  when  the  expression  is 
used  to  contrast  it  with  a  new  one  :  whereas  the  combination  falls 
under  another  head  if  it  is  obvious,  without  any  adjective,  what 
house  is  meant.  In  those  cases  which  come  under  the  second 
category,  the  determination  is  indispensable,  because  without   it 


the  predicate  has  no  value.  In  the  first  category  the  following 
further  distinctions  are  of  importance.  In  the  first  place,  the 
'determinant  may  already  be  known  as  applicable  to  the  concep- 
tion to  which  it  is  appended  (as  is  the  case  with  the  repetition  of 
the  standing  epithets  in  the  language  of  Epic  poetry)  :  or  it  may 
communicate  something  new.  In  the  latter  case  the  determinant 
has  a  greater  independence,  and  approaches  the  value  of  a  true 
predicate  [as  Tullia  ferox,  Tullia  mitis  (LiVY)].  We  prefer,  in 
such  cases,  commonly  to  use  periphrases  by  means  of  a  relative 
sentence ;  as  '  Charles,  who  was  poor ; '  '  Louis,  who  was  a  clever 
painter.'  In  the  second  place,  while  the  determination  has  not 
necessarily  any  relation  to  the  predicate,  it  may  yet  stand  in  a 
causal  relation  to  it,  as  in  '  The  cruel  man  would  not  listen  to  the 
victim's  prayers.' 

208.  We  have  conceived  the  deterjninant  as  a  weakened 
predicate.  There  is,  further,  an  intermediate  stage  at  which  the 
determination  has  a  greater  independence  still,  and  is  not  so 
closely  connected  with  the  subject.  For  this  reason  it  seems 
best  to  regard  it  as  a  special  clause  in  the  sentence.  Under 
this  head  comes  what  we  commonly  call  the  predicatival  attribute ; 
for  instance,  'he  arrived  safe  and  sound.'  But  prepositional 
determinants  may  equally  well  stand  in  the  same  logical  relation  ; 
e.g.  '  he  begged,  me  on  his  knees,'  for  which  '  kneeling '  would  be 
a  perfect  substitute.  The  relation  of  the  predicatival  attribute 
to  its  substantive  is  not  so  close,  because  it  denotes,  not  a  pecu- 
liarity necessary  and  enduring,  but  a  merely  accidental  and  trans- 
itory situation.  It  may,  therefore,  be  regarded  as  an  independent 
link  connected  with  subject  and  predicate  alike.  This  independ- 
ence shows  itself  in  most  languages  by  the  greater  freedom  of 
the  position  of  the  words  as  contrasted  with  the  fixed  position 
of  the  pure  attribute.     In  nhg.  the  nearer  affinity  to  the  predicate 


has  further  found  expression  in  the  use  of  the  uninflected  form 
of  the  adjective,  as  in  the  case  of  the  predicate.  When  once 
the  adverbial  and  abnominal  determinations  have  been  developed, 
as  special  varieties,  from  original  subjects  or  predicates,  a  further 
complication  of  the  sentence  becomes  possible,  since  a  combina- 
tion consisting  of  a  determined  and  a  determining  element  may 
again  be  determined  by  a  new  element,  or  itself  serve  as  a  deter- 
minant ;  and  since,  further,  several  determining  elements  may  be 
joined  to  one  determinate,  or  several  determinate  elements  to 
one  determinant,  just  as  several  subjects  may  be  joined  to  one 
predicate,  or  several  predicates  to  one  subject.  As  examples  we 
may  take  (i)  alle  guten  geister,  Miillers  dlteste  tochter,  er  gerdt  leicht 
in  zorn  (to  be  understood  gerdt  in  zorn  -\-  leichi) ;  (2)  sehr  gute 
kinder,  alles  opfernde  Hebe,  er  spricht  sehr  gut  ;\i)  triibes,  regner- 
isches  {triibes  und  regnerisches)  wetter,  er  tanzt  leicht  tend  sierlich  ; 
(4)  Karls  hut  und  stock,  er  schldgt  weib  und  kind. 

209.  The  first  method  of  combination  is  that  commonly 
described  as  the  relation  of  inclusion.  It  is  not  always  possible 
to  draw  a  sharp  line  between  it  and  the  third.  For  instance,  if 
I  say  large  round  hats,  it  makes  no  essential  difference  whether 
we  classify  this  combination  under  (i)  or  (3).  In  NHG.,  where 
two  adjectives  are  used  together,  the  use  of  the  strong  or  of  the 
weak  form  affords  a  means  of  distinguishing  the  relation  of  juxta- 
position from  that  of  inclusion,  a  means  which  leaves  us,  however, 
in  perplexity  when  both  forms  phonetically  coincide.  But  the 
difficulty  of  correctly  maintaining  the  difference  manifests  itself 
in  many  instances  where  the  writers  have  offended  against  the 
i-uies  of  grammar;  compare  the  instances  given  in  Andresen, 
Sprachgebrauch,   p.  38  sqq. 

210.  Constructions  (3)  and  (4)  may  be  interpreted  in  two 
fundamentally  distinct  ways.     They  may  either,  as  has  been  stated 


above,  be  conceived  as  constructions  airo  koivov,  or  as  the  com- 
bination of  one  element  with  two  elements  united  by  a  copula. 
Hence  it  is  that  we  find  in  (4),  in  those  languages  which  have 
developed  grammatical  concord,  the  same  vacillation  in  the  form 
of  the  attribute  as  we  have  found  above  (p.  130)  in  the  form 
of  the  predicate.  Cf ,  on  the  one  hand,  the  French  le  honheur  et 
le  courage  constants,  la  langue  et  la  littirature  francaises ;  Latin, 
*  C''=-  Har-  Qai  et  Appii  Claudiorum  ;  *  on  the  other  hand,  la  fille  et  la  mere 

reusp.  12.  ^■'^  '  -^ 

offensee  (Racine)  ;  the  Latin  Tiberius  et  Gajus  Gracchus,  et  tri- 
bunis  et  plebe  incitata  in  patres  (LiVY,  iii.  66).  Not,  however,  that 
all  cases  of  the  same  grammatical  form  are  in  this  way  open  to 
two  meanings.  In  the  cases  cited  each  of  the  two  substantives 
denotes  an  independent  substance.  It  may,  however,  also  happen 
that  the  combination  denotes  merely  two  aspects  of  the  same 
object,  e.g.  my  uncle  and  foster-father.  In  this  case,  where  the 
combination  appears  independently  as  either  subject  or  object, 
we  must  classify  only  as  my  +  uncle  and  foster-father.  When 
each  word  denotes  a  particular  object,  the  German  language  in 
modern  times  prefers  [as  also  the  English],  at  least  in  the  case 
of  singular  nouns,  to  assign  to  each  its  special  attribute ;  so  that 
my  uncle  and  my  foster-father  bears  a  different  meaning  from  my 
uncle  and  foster-father.  We  can  refer  the  former  combination  to 
a  person  only  when  it  is  expressly  placed  in  relation  to  one 
either  as  predicate  or  as  attribute,  or  finally  as  an  address.  On 
the  other  hand  we  find,  though  the  grammarians  condemn  the 
usage,  frequently  enough  the  simple  juxtaposition  of  the  attri- 
bute with  several  substantives,  each  of  which  denotes  a  special 
object;  cf  the  numerous  examples  given  in  Andresen,  Sprach- 
gebrauch,  p.  125  sqq.  Similarly  Lessing  wrote  iiber  die  grenzen 
der  malerei  und poesie. 


211.  The  amplifications  of  the  sentence  hitherto  described  pro-  Use  of.. 


ceeded  from  the  formula  {a  +  {b)  +  c), — cf.  p.    129 — in  connexion  subject « 

.  ,        .  predicate. 

With  the  copulative  combination.  We  turn  to  the  amplifications 
according  to  the  formula  {a+b)  +  c.  We  find  these,  for  instance, 
represented  by  the  combination  of  a  verb  with  the  accusative  and 
infinitive,  or  with  two  accusatives,  of  which  the  one  is  a  predicate  : 
memini — me  audire,  reddo — te  beatum.  In  order,  however,  to  under- 
stand the  origin  of  these  constructions,  we  shall  be  compelled  to  take 
another  point  of  departure.  Our  best  course  is  to  confine  ourselves 
in  the  first  place  to  such  cases  as  those  in  which  a  composite 
member  of  a  sentence  (a-\-b^  still  plainly  exhibits  the  form  of  the 
independent  sentence,  and  thus  contains  a  finite  verb.  We  here 
pass  again  beyond  the  borders  of  the  so-called  simple  sentence,  and 
encroach  on  the  area  of  the  compound  sentence.  Actual  historical 
and  psychological  observation  shows  us  that  this  division  cannot 
be  strictly  maintained.  It  depends  upon  the  assumption  that  the 
presence  of  a  finite  verb  is  the  strict  characteristic  of  the  sentence  ; 
a  view  which  is  absolutely  inapplicable  to  many  languages  and 
epochs,  and  is  absolutely  applicable  to  none.  In  cases  where  the 
definite  stamp  of  a  finite  verb  is  wanting,  the  division  too  between 
the  simple  and  compound  sentence  in  the  ordinary  sense  ceases  to 
hold  good.  The  so-called  composite  and  the  so-called  amplified 
sentence  are  accordingly  in  their  essence  absolutely  identical.  It 
thus  appears  further  to  be  a  mistaken  view  that  the  degradation 
of  a  sentence  to  the  position  of  member  of  a  sentence— the  so- 
called  hypotaxis—6:\^  not  develop  until  a  comparatively  late  stage 
of  language.  The  existence  of  the  amplified  sentence,  which  is 
found  even  in  the  most  primitive  languages,  presupposes  this 
degradation  as  completely  carried  out.  Further,  the  ordinary  view 
that  the  hypotaxis  has  consistently  arisen  from  parataxis  is  mis- 
taken.    It  might  be  asserted  with  equal  reason  that  the  division  of 


a  sentence  into  subject  and  predicate  has  arisen  from  the  copulative 
connexion  of  two  words.  This  view  was  enabled  to  arise  because 
the  oldest  form  oihypotaxis  no  doubt  lacks  any  special  grammatical 
denomination,  and  is  merely  logical  and  psychological.  But  to  call 
a  logical  sub-ordination  such  as  this  a  co-ordination  {^parataxis) 
is  quite  incorrect. 

212.  It  happens  very  often  in  Modern  German,  and  in  other 
languages  in  which  the  structure  of  the  sentence  is  already  richly 
developed,  that  combinations,  in  form  undistinguishable  from  the 
main  sentence,  are  used  as  objects.  Under  this  head  we  may 
reckon  the  '  Oratio  directa.'  Under  the  same  head  too  come  sen- 
tences like,  I  maintain  he  is  a  liar  ;  I  think  you  are  mad;  I  see  you 
tremble ;  consider,  it  is  dangerous.  Demands,  too,  and  questions 
are  thrown  into  the  same  relation  of  dependence  :  Pray ^  give  it  me  ; 
cf.  Latin  quaeso,  cogita  ac  delibera ;  sage,  hast  du  ihn  gesehen ; 
sprich,  was  bekiimmert  dich ;  also  Latin,  videte  quantae  res  his 
IfiCjf'^"'"  testimoniis  sunt  confectae  (CiC.)  ;*  quaero  de  te,  qui  possmtt  esse  beati   {Clc);fresponde,   quis   me   vendit  (PLAUTUS).t   It  is   more 

VI.  i8. 

rare   to    meet  with    subjects    of  this    kind,   excepting  where  the 
passive    is    used,   as    besser   ist,   du  Idsst  es   bleiben  ;    das  macht, 
sie  ist  sehr  mannigfaltig  (Lessing). 
)f  213.  It  is  no  doubt  true  that  in  all  these  cases  the  subject  or 


le-  object  sentences  possess  a  certain  independence  ;  and,  excepting 
in  the  case  of  the  '  Oratio  directa,'  they  cannot  be  employed  without 
an  independent  value  being  assigned  to  them.  For  instance,  we 
cannot  say,  I  thought  you  are  ill ;  nor  in  German  either,  ichglaubte, 
du  bist  krank,  or  ich  glaubte,  du  warst  krank.  It  does  not,  however 
follow  from  this  limited  independence  that  the  relation  to  the  main 
verb  was  in  its  origin  paratactical  ;  but,  with  reference  to  the 
main  verb  a  decided  case  of  hypotaxis  arises,  and  independence 
only  in  as  far  as  the  presence  of  this  is  disregarded.     The  inde- 



pendence  is  more  marked  if  the  governing  sentence  is  placed  last 
or  intercalated,  as  in  this  case  the  dependence  is  not  noticed  until 
the  conclusion — e.g. :  He  is  a  liar,  T  believe ;  or,  he  is,  T  think,  a 
liar;  so  in  Latin,  quid  illi  locuti  inter  se?  die  mihi  {YtA-HTUS);** '""'"■  "■'^'^ 
signi,  die,  quid  est  f  (PLAUTUS).t  In  the  case  of  intercalation  our  ufeT*"'' 
grammarians  are  disposed  to  treat  the  intercalated  sentence  as 
subordinate,  and  they  might  appeal  to  the  fact  that  such  an 
expression  as  /  think  is  nearly  equivalent  to  as  I  think,  or  in  my 
opinion,  or  in  my  belief.  In  the  older  NHG.  it  is  quite  common  to 
set  down  a  sentence  in  the  first  instance  as  independent,  and  then 
simultaneously  to  make  it  the  subject  or  the  object  of  a  succeeding 
sentence  :  of.  the  following  examples  from  Hans  Sachs — ein  evolk 
dreissig  jar  fritlich  lebet,  verdross  den  teufel  gar  ;  der  fraue?i  wart 
sein  hab  vnd  gut,geschah  nach  Christi  geburt  zware  vierhundert  vnd 
auch  funfsig  jare ;  des  wirt  ein  base  letz  der  Ion,  deut  der  schwam 
von  dem  scorpion  ;  das  betrUbt  weib  sich  selbst  erstach  vnd  nam  ein 
kleglich  end,  beschreibt  Boccatius ;  darum  jm  jederman  wol  sprach, 
tut  Plutarchus  beweisen.  In  these  cases  it  would  be  quite  unjusti- 
fiable to  assume  the  ellipsis  of  a  das. 

214.  The  use  of  the  persons  in  such  sentences  as  follow  must 
also  be  explained  from  this  union  of  independence  and  depen- 
dence^  e.g. :  er  denkt,  er  hat  was  rechtes  getan,  instead  of  ich  habe  ; 
that  is,  from  the  point  of  view  of  the  speaker,  and  not  from  that  of 
the  person  to  whom  the  thought  is  ascribed  :  similarly  as  believe  me, 
you  are  in  error;  he  thinks  he  can  deceive  you. 

215.  It  occurs  also  that  some  writers  and  speakers  prefer  the 
emphasised  form  of  the  parataxis  in  spite  of  the  logical  dependence. 
A  common  instance  of  this  is  the  German  sei  so  gut  und  tue  das 
{'  Be  so  good  and  do  that ').  Cf.  Hans  Sachs'  expression,  ir  seidt 
gewonet  alle  zwen  vnd  tragt  mit  euch  was  nit  wil  gehn.  Other 
examples  may  be  found  in  Andr.  Sprachg,  p.  140. 


Indirect  2 1 6.  The  '  Oratio  obliqua  '  in  German  must  at  the  present  day 


be  regarded  as  grammatically  dependent,  and  the  sign  of  its 
dependence  is  the  conjunctive  mood.  If  we,  however,  regard  the 
origin  of  the  construction,  it  is  clear  that,  in  this  case  also,  a  some- 
thing half-way  between  logical  dependence  and  logical  indepen- 
dence lies  at  the  root.  Such  a  construction  as  er  meitit,  er  konne 
dick  betriigen  originally  stood  on  the  same  footing  as  the  phrase 
cited  above,  er  ineint,  er  kann  dich  betriigen ;  only  that  the  asser- 
tion is  made  with  less  confidence,  and  that  therefore  the  conjunc- 
tive (or  optative)  is  employed  in  a  potential  meaning.  The  fact 
that  the  potential  has  ceased  to  be  employed  in  main  sentences 
has  promoted  the  apprehension  of  the  relation  as-  one  of  real 
grammatical  dependence. 
Sentenced  21/.  Now,  a  Combination  of  the  form  (<a;-|-i^)-i-t  may,  just  like 

apposition  to  . 

a  Noun,  the  Simpler  formula  a  +  b,  be  degraded  from  the  position  of  a  sen- 
tence to  that  of  a  member  of  a  sentence.  In  this  manner  a  sen- 
tence may  become  determinant  to  a  noun,  or  be  put  in  apposition 
to  it.  Compare  such  sentences  as  er  sprach  die  worte  :  das  tue  ich 
niemals ;  eins  weiss  ich :  es  geschieht  nicht  wieder ;  folgendes  ist 
mir  begegnet :  ich  traf  eitien  mann  ;  ein  sonderbarer  zufall  hat  sich 
gestern  zugetragen  :  es  begegneten  sich  zwei  freunde,  etc. ;  er  hat  die 
gewohnheit :  er  erwidert  nie  einen  brief ;  ich  habe  die  iiberzeugung  : 
du  wirst  dich  noch  bekehren.  A  pronoun  is  especially  often  used 
in  this  way,  to  which  the  sentence  stands  in  the  place  of  an  appo- 
sition ;  cf. :  das  ist  sicker,  er  wird  es  nicht  wagen  ;  es  ist  besser,  du 
gehst;  Latin,  hoc  relicuomst :  si  infitias  ibit,  testis  mecum  est  amilus 
(Ter.);  hoc  capio  commodi:  neque  agri,  neque  urbis  odium  me 
unquam  percipit  (Ter.).  In  the  same  way  sentences  stand  in 
apposition  to  a  demonstrative  adverb :  er  ist  so  lieb,  man  kann 
ilim  nicht  base  sein. 

2 1 8.  If  it  is  only  a  pronoun  which  is  defined  by  the  sentence. 



we  can  omit  it  in  thought  without  any  essential  change  in  the 
sense.  In  this  case  we  have  again  the  form  referred  to  above,  in 
which  the  sentence  is  directly  made  the  subject  or  the  object.  Cf.  O 
es  ist  gewiss,  du  bleibst  with  gewiss  ist,  du  bleibst.  Thus  the  two 
forms  of  expression  come  into  very  close  contact. 

219.  Conversely,  a  noun  may  become  appositive  to  a  sentence  ;  a  No™,  to  a 
cf.:  You  always  squint,  a  bad  habit.  This  construction  is  especially 
common  when  a  relative  sentence  is  in  addition  connected  with 
the  noun ;  as,  He  means  to  start,  a  resolve  which  has  cost  him 
dear.  In  this  case  we  again  clearly  recognise  the  apposition  as 
a-  degradation  of  the  predicate.  And  it  is  precisely  this  degrada- 
tion that  has  prevented  the  sentence  preceding  from  being  itself 
degraded  to  a  mere  subject. 

220.  We  have  thus  traced  the  development  of  the  sentence  Parataxis, 
from  its  simplest  to  its  most  complicated  form.  We  now  turn 
to  the  paratactic  conjunction  of  several  sentences.  This  stands 
parallel  to  the  copulative  corhbination  of  co-ordinate  members  of 
a  sentence ;  for  which  reason  even  the  most  highly  developed 
languages  employ  the  same  resources  in  order  to  designate  both 
kinds  of  connexion.  Originally  in  this  case,  too,  mere  juxta- 
position had  to  suffice.  And  if,  as  we  have  seen  in  the  case  of 
hypotaxis,  the  one  member  may  have  a  certain  independence,  so, 
on  the  other  side,  we  find  that  a  parataxis  with  full  indepen- 
dence of  the  sentences  connected  together  nowhere  occurs  ;  that, 
in  fact,  it  is  impossible  to  connect  sentences  together  without  a  cer- 
tain kind  of  hypotaxis.  We  can  call  a  sentence  independent,  or 
designate  it  a  principal  sentence,  in  the  strictest  sense,  only  if  it  is 
uttered  merely  for  itself,  and  not  to  give  a  determination  to  another 
sentence.     In  correspondence  with  this  we  should  have  to  define 


the  subordinate  sentence  as  one  uttered  merely  in  order  to  deter- 
mine another.  Now  it  is  quite  obvious  that  a  sentence  can  at 
one  and  the  same  time  be  uttered  for  its  own  sake,  and  may- 
still  serve  as  determinant  to  another  sentence,  and  that  it  is 
accordingly  sure  to  exhibit  a  series  of  intermediate  stages  be- 
tween the  two  extremes.  It  is  further  obvious  that  no  reason- 
able ground  could  exist  for  arranging  sentences  paratactically  to 
each  other,  were  it  not  that  there  were  an  inner  connexion  be- 
tween them  ;  that  is,  unless  one  in  some  way  determined  the 
other.  There  is  thus  no  such  thing  as  a  purely  paratactical 
relation  between  two  sentences  in  the  sense  that  neither  is  de- 
termined by  the  other ;  and  the  only  possible  conception  of 
parataxis  is  this,  that  instead  of  one  sentence  determining  the 
other,  the  two  reciprocally  determine  each  other. 

221.  Pure  parataxis  in  this  sense  exists  between  parallel 
sentences,  whether  the  thoughts  conjoined  be  of  analogous  or  of 
contrary  import ;  he  is  blind,  she  is  deaf ;  he  laughs,  she  cries. 
This  is  no  longer,  however,  the  case  with  narrative.  If  any  one 
tells  us :  T  arrived  in  London  at  twelve  o'clock ;  I  went  to  the 
nearest  hotel;  I  was  told  that  they  were  all  full ;  T  went  on; — 
in  such  a  case  the  preceding  sentence  in  every  case  gives  to  the 
following  a  temporal  as  well  as  a  causal  determination.  This  is,. 
however,  a  function  not  yet  thought  of  at  the  moment  when 
the  sentence  is  spoken.  Accordingly  we  have  again  a  union  of 
independence  and  dependence.  We  might  desire  a  more  cir- 
cumstantial method  of  expression  in  which  the  sentence  should 
always  occur  twice ;  once  as  independent,  once  as  dependent.. 
Instead  of  such  a  repetition,  which  at  any  rate  occurs  but  ex- 
ceptionally in  practice,  language  avails  itself  of  substitution  by- 
means  of  a  pronoun  or  a  demonstrative  adverb.  It  was  for  the 
development   of  syntax   a    most   significant    step    by   which    the 



demonstrative,  which  originally  referred  solely  to  something 
immediately  before  the  senses,  acquired  a  reference  to  some- 
thing just  uttered.  By  this  means  it  became  possible  also  to 
give  grammatical  expression  to  the  psychological  process  in 
which  a  sentence  is  set  down  as  independent,  and  at  the  same  / 
time  serves  as  determinant  to  a  sentence  following  it.  The 
demonstrative  may  have  reference  to  an  entire  sentence,  or 
merely  to  one  member  of  the  sentence.  In  the  latter  case  also 
it  frequently  happens  that  the  entire  sentence  which  contains 
this  member  serves  to  determine  the  following.  If,  for  instance, 
a  German  says  ich  begegnete  einem  knaben ;  der  fragte  mich,  the 
word  der  refers  to  einem  knaben;  but  the  entire  signification  of 
der  is  not  exhausted  by  the  general  notion  knabe ;  it  is  'the 
boy  whom  I  met'  Thus  the  preceding  independent  sentence 
is  to  some  extent  changed  by  the  influence  of  the  demonstrative 
into  a  compound  member  of  a  sentence ;  the  other  parts  of  the 
sentence  subordinating  themselves  to  the  word  referred  to  by 
the  demonstrative  as  its  attributional  determinant. 

222.  Now  if  it  is  of  the   essence  of  all  combination  of  sen-  Graduated 


tences  that  even  the  sentences  set  down  as  independent  should  tion  to 


maintain  a  certain  element  of  subordination,  it  is  quite  natural 
that  from  this  point  the  possibility  is  open  for  a  graduated 
approximation  to  entire  subordination,  the  independent  value  of 
a  sentence  tending  more  and  more  to  give  way  to  the  function 
of  serving  as  determinant  to  another.  In  the  case  of  narrative, 
the  logical  subordination  is  indicated  in  the  IE.  languages  by 
the  employment  of  the  relative  tenses  (the  imperfect  and  plu- 
perfect). Cf.:  Cincta  premebantur  trucibus  Capitolia  Gallis  ;  Fece- 
rat  obsidio  jam  diuturna  famem:  Juppiter  ad  solium  superis 
regale  vocatis  '  Incipe  ! '  ait  Marti  (Ov.  Fast  VI.  35  O-  This  usage 
is  very  common    in   Ovid  ;    it  serves   to    introduce   the   situation 



from  which  the  narrative  starts.  Sentences  principal  in  form,  but 
with  decided  logical  subordination,  are  especially  frequent  in  the 
most  various  languages,  if  such  words  zsjust,  already,  scarcely,  still, 
etc.,  are  added,  or  in  such  phrases  as  es  dauerte  nicht  lange,  etc. ; 
cf.:  kaum  sek'  ich  mich  auf  ebnem  plan,  flugs  schlagen  meine  doggen 
an  (Schiller)  ;  Latin,  vix  bene  desierat,  currus  rogat  ille  paternos 
Ix^'^t^'  (Ovid).*  In  Latin  such  also  occur  connected  by  the  copulative 
^  ^     ..     particle  :    vix  ea  fatus  erat  senior,  subitoque  fragore  intonuit  laevum 

t  Aen.  11.  J.        J       Q 

^93-  (Vergil)  ;  t  nee  longum  tempus  et  ingens  exiit  ad  caelum  (Vergil)  .  \ 

XGeorg.ii.  {Vix  prima  inceperat  aestas  Et  pater  Anchises  dare  fatis  vela  inbebat 
(Vergil).]  The  most  ordinary  form  of  this  construction — universal 
in  NHG. — is  where  a  demonstrative  appears  in  the  appended 
sentence,  as  ich  war  noch  nicht  eingeschlafen,  da  h'orte  ich  einen 
Idrm ;  es  dauerte  nicht  lange,  so  kam  er  wider,  etc.  [I  was  awake 
and  I  heard  a  noise,  etc.] 

223.  In  MHG.  it  occurs  not  unfrequently  that  of  two  sen- 
tences placed  asyndetically  together,  the  former  serves  merely 
as  determinant  to  some  member  of  the  second.^  Cf. :  ein  marc- 
grave  der  heiz  Herman  :  mit  deme  er  iz  reden  began  (Rother  %6) ; 
Josephus  hiez  ein  wiser  man :  alse  schiere  er  den  rat  vernam,  mit 
michelen  listen  muose  er  sick  vristen  (Kaiserchronik)  ;  em 
wazzer  heizet  In  :  da  vdhten  die  Beiere  mit  in  (Kaiser.). 

224.  In  the  case  of  sentences  introduced  by  either  .  .  .  or,  the 
former  may  be  logically  subordinated  in  such  a  way  that  it  is 
equivalent  to  a  sentence  introduced  by  in  so  far  as  .  .  .  not;  cf. 
MHG.,  die  ir  christenlichen  anthdiz  mit  andern  gehdizzen  habent 
gemeret,  .  .  .  eintweder  diu  schrift  tst  gelogen  oder  si  choment  in 
ein  vil  michel  ndt  (Heinrich  v.  Melk)  ;  French,  ou  7non  amour 
me   trompe,  ou   Zaire   aujourd'hui  pour  Velever  d   soi  descendrait 

jusqu'd  lui  (VoLTAIRE). 

^  Cf.  Behaghel  in  the  Introduction  to  Veldeke's  Eneide,  p.  xxviii. 


225.  Where  the  sequence  in  the  sentence  is  inverted,  logical 
independence  and  dependence  cannot  be  united  in  the  same 
way.  If  a  sentence  serves  as  definition  to  a  preceding  one,  it 
is  clear  from  the  outset  that  it  is  uttered  merely  for  the  sake 
of  that  sentence ;  cf. :  ich  kam  nach  hause,  es  schlug  gerade  1 2 
uhr ;  T  had  to  tell  him.  everything,  he  was  so  curious.  The  fact 
of  the  dependence  comes  out  most  clearly  if  the  determining 
sentence  is  intercalated  in  that  which  it  determines.  Such 
intercalated  sentences  (or  parenthesis)  are  of  course  common  in 
all,  even  the  most  highly  developed  languages,  and  they  occur 
indifferently  in  the  most  diverse  logical  relations  to  the  governing 

226.  When   sentences  of  demand  or   interrogation  come   into  Transition 

from  demand 

logical  dependence,  they  pass  into  designations  of  the  condition  or  01  interro- 
gation to 
of  the  concession.     Cf.  :  geh  hin  :  du  wirst  sehen  or  so  (dann)  wirst  Hypotaxis. 

du  sehen  ;  L,a.tin,  eras  J>etito :  daditur  (Plavtus)  ;  sint  Maecenates, 

non  deerunt,  Flacce,  Marones  (Martial)  ;  *   also  in   combinations  *  vi;;.  56. 

effected  by  a  copulative  particle,  as  sage  mir,  mit  wem  du   um- 

gehst,  und  ich  will  dir  sagen,  wer  du  bist ;  Latin,  divide  et  impera  ;  ^am.fup. 

impinge    lapidem    et    dignum    accipies   praemium    (Phaedrus).  f 

From    similar  cases  of  the  employment  of  sentences  of  demand, 

forms  of  sentences  have  arisen  in  different  languages  which  are 

felt  as  independent  from  the  fact  that  what  originally  was  an 

only     '  occasional '    conception     has     received    a    '  usual '   value. 

Cf. :  ich  bin  dir  nah,  du  seist  auch  nock  so  feme,  or  the  English 

imperatives,  such   as   suppose,  say   [grant]    ('  Say  you   can   swim,    ^^^  ^^ 

'tis  but  a  while;   Shakespeare),!  which  have  to  some  extent v^v.^4; ako 

passed    into    the    rank   of    conjunctions.      Under  this  head   we  i]i;,JJ^."i.' 

-   .  7    i>  75j  a"d 

must  reckon,  too,  the  Latin  conditional  sentences  with  modo  elsewhere. 
{cf :  ego  ista  studia  non  improbo,  moderata  modo  sint),  §  which  ^  ^^  ^ 
must    not    be    apprehended    as    a    governing   construction,   and 


which  can  actually  stand  equally  well  side  by  side  with  dum. 
In  the  same  way  it  is  well  known  that  from  the  interrogation 
has  arisen  a  form  of  conditional  sentences  very  common  in 
German  and  in  English,  and  not  unknown  to  the  Romance 
languages  {willst  du  est  tun,  so  beetle  dich).  (If  you,  want  to  do  it, 
lose  no  time). 


Page  126. — Verit  denne,  etc.      Then  doomsday  comes  into  the  land,   the  Lord  called 

him  ;  cf.  the  Eng.     He  says,  says  he. 
Page  130. — Dd  spranc,  etc.     Then  Hagene  sprang  from  the  seat  thus  spake. 
Page  133. — Mit  ziihten,  etc.    Decorously  a  lady  who  had  her  dwelling  therein  asked 

her  to  the  house. 
Page  133. — Die  worhte,  etc.    A  smith  wrought  them  (who)  was  called  Vulcan. 
Page  133. — Von  einem  slangen,  etc.     Of  a  snake  (which)  was  bound. 
Page  133.— 7cA  hah,  etc.     I  have  a  sin  (which)  is  against  you. 
Page  133. — Dar  inne,  etc.     Therein  he  saw  glisten  of  red  coals  a  glow  (which)  waited 

for  his  fall. 
Page  141. — Ein   evolk,   etc.    A    married  couple  lived  thirty  years  in  peace    (which) 

vexed  the  devil  greatly  ;    The  lady  got  his  possessions  (which)  happened  after 

Christ's  birth  verily  450  years  ;   Thus  the  wages  become  an  evil  parting-present 

(that  as)  the  scorpion's  tail  signifies  ;   The  sorrowful  woman  stabbed  herself  and 

took  a  miserable  end,  Boccaccio  describes ;  Therefore  everybody  spoke  well  of  him, 

Plutarchus  proves. 
Page  146. — Ein  marcgrdve,  etc.    A  margrave  was  called  Herman :  with  him  he  began 

to  talk  about  it  (Rother  86) ;   A  wise  man  was  called  Josephus  :   as  soon  as  he 

heard  the  advice,  he  had  to  himself  with  great  cunning ;  A  water  (river)  is 

called  Inn  ;   there  the  Bavarians  fought  with  them. 
Page  146. — Die  ir,  etc.     Those  who  have  increased  their  Christian  promise  (vow)  by 

other  promises  (in  so  much  as  scripture  is  not  a  lie),  either  scripture  is  a  lie  or 

they  will  get  into  very  great  trouble. 



THE  most  general  of  the  statements  which  have  been  made  Comparison 
about   the   signification   of  words   and   their   changes   in  ticai  with 


Chapter  IV.  may  be  equally  applied  to  the  signification  of  syntactic  change  of 

t>  Ti  i'--ii  111  meaning. 

relations.  In  these,  too,  we  must  distinguish  between  '  usual  and 
'  occasional '  meaning.  The  '  usual '  meaning  may  be  more  than  a 
single  one :  its  changes  arise  from  the  variations  of  the  occasional 
signification,  and  they  consist  either  in  the  enrichment  or  in  the 
impoverishment  of  the  contents  with  a  corresponding  narrowing 
or  enlargement  of  the  extent.  Peculiar  circumstances,  however, 
arise  from  the  fact  that  we  have  here  to  deal  with  the  relations 
of  several  elements  to  each  other  (cf. :  amo  patrem,  amor  patris), 
and  tha,t  these  relations  are  compounded  into  narrower  or  wider 
groups  {e.g.,  verb — objective  accusative,  substantive — genitive  of 
another  substantive).  Accordingly,  besides  the  difference  between 
'usual'  and  'occasional'  signification,  we  must  make  another  dis- 
tinction, likewise  a  very  important  one,  namely,  that  between 
I  the  signification  of  a  general  relation  absolutely,  and  that  of  the 
'relation  to  some  definite  word.  The  signification  which  the 
accusative  has  in  its  relation  to  a  single  definite  verb  must  be 
distinguished  from  the  general  signification  which  it  has  in  its 
relation  to  any  word  whatever,  and  also  from  that  which  it  has 
in  its  relation  to  any  transitive  verb  whatever.     The  signification 


it  bears  in  the  first-mentioned  instance  may  be  closer  and  more 
special,  and  more  or  less  isolated  with  respect  to  the  general 
signification.  In  modern  times  the  view  of  the  older  grammarians 
has  been  much  disputed,  that  a  case  is  actually  governed  by  a  verb 
or  a  preposition,  or  a  mood  governed  by  a  conjunction,  etc.  ; 
and  it  has  been  sought  to  derive  the  use  of  the  case  or  the  mood 
from  its  general  signification.  But  still,  in  a  certain  sense,  and 
with  certain  limitations,  the  traditional  doctrine  may  be  defended. 
These  general  statements  will  be  supported  in  what  follows  by 
TheGenitive.  228.  No  simplc  signification  can  be  laid  down  for  the  genitive 
from  which  the  functions  which  it  already  fulfils  in  the  original 
Indo-European  language  can  be  directly  gathered.  For  in- 
stance, we  must  from  the  very  outset  regard  the  genitive  when 
dependent  on  verbs  as  jn  a  different  category  from  the  same  case 
when  dependent  on  substantives.  If  we  examine  the  latter,  we 
are  justified  in  maintaining  that  the  genitive,  as  is,  generally 
speaking,  the  case  in  ancient  Greek,  could  be  employed  in  IE. 
for  the  expression  of  any  given  relation  between  two  substantives ; 
we  may,  therefore,  ascribe  to  this  category  a  simple  signification 
of  very  meagre  content  and  very  wide  extent,  which  is  only  occa- 
sionally specialised.  On  the  other  hand,  in  NHG.  the  function 
of  the  genitive  in  connection  with  substantives  ,is  considerably 
restricted.      Many  usages  possible   still   in  MHG. — cf.,  goldes  zein 

('  staff  of  gold '),   langes   lebens   zvdn    {'  hope   of    long   life ') are 

at  the  present  day  obsolete.  We  must  nowadays  look  for  more 
special  meanings  if  we  would  denote  the  usage  of  the  geni- 
tive, and  in  this  we  are  compelled  to  distinguish  several  cate- 
gories, and  to  set  side  by  side  several  independent  significations. 
«  These  might  be  most  simply  denoted  in   this  way :   possessive- 

^  genitive,   partitive-genitive,  and  the  genitive    denoting    that   the 


governing  substantive  is  what  it  is,  in  virtue  of  that  which  de- 
pends  upon    it   {e.g. :   the  maris    brother,   the  god   of  wine,   the 
writer  of  the  work,  the  exploit  of  the  hero).     The  last-named  cate- 
gory may  be  divided  into  two  subdivisions  in  the  case  of  nouns 
of  action,  viz.,  the  subjective  and  the  objective  genitive  \cf.:  the 
government  of  the  Czar,  or  the  government  of  the  country\.    The 
statement  of  such  categories  has  no  doubt  been  lately  regarded 
as  a  purely  logical  division,  to  be  sharply  separated  from  grammar. 
This  view  is,  however,  hardly  correct,  assuming  that  the  state- 
ment is  made  accurately  and  properly.     The  categories  in  ques- 
tion have  gained  an  independent  position  with  respect  to  their 
original  general  signification,  and  only  owing  to  this  fact  has  it 
been  possible  for  these  alone  to  survive,  while  the  other  ways 
of  applying  them,  which  would  likewise  range  themselves  under 
the  original  signification,  have  disappeared. 

229.  The  relation  of  the  accusative  to  its  governing  verb  is  The  Accusa- 
analogous  to  that  of  the  genitive  to  its  governing  substantive. 
If  we  would  give  a  general  statement  of  the  meaning  of  the 
accusative,  under  which  all  the  single  methods  of  employing  it 
might  be  arranged,  we  must  say  that  it  denotes  generally  every 
conceivable  kind  of  relation  which  a  substantive  can  bear  to  a 
verb,  except  that  of  a  subject  to  its  predicate.  But  still  we  are 
unable  to  employ  it  in  each  case  in  which  such  a  common  relation 
occurs ;  and,  indeed,  as  early  as  in  the  epoch  of  the  IE.  funda- 
mental language  this  was  inadmissible,  even  though  the  applica- 
tion was  still  much  freer  and  more  extended  in  its  range,  as  we 
may  see,  for  example,  in  Greek.  Hence  the  assumption  of  one 
single  all-comprehending  meaning  is  insufficient:  we  must  place 
side  by  side  different  usages  which  have  gradually  become 
independent.  But  in  this  place  the  further  fact  must  be  taken 
into   consideration   that    in    its   relation   to   single   verbs  also   a 



fixed  usage,  with  regard  to  the  employment  or  otherwise  of  the 
accusative,  and  a  specialisation  of  the  signification,  has  established 
itself.  We  must  accordingly  distinguish  between  the  free  accusa- 
tive, which  is  independent  of  the  nature  of  the  verb  to  which  it  is 
attached,  and  the  attached  accusative,  which  is  placed  in  connexion 
with  a  small  number  of  verbs  only,  and  in  each  individual  case  in 
a  restricted  signification. 

230.  Among  the  free  uses  of  the  accusative  dating  from  the 
earliest  times,  is  its  employment  for  the  designation  of  what 
extends  over  sp^ce  and  time  (used  not  merely  with  verbs) :  also 
the   accusative   of   the   contents    of   substantives   etymologically 

na^  £» ""  connected  with  the  verb  (as  to  fight  a  hard  fight)  ;*in  Latin  the 
^yam.  u.  j^(-(-yg^^jyg  pf  ^j^g  names  of  towns  in  answer  to  the  question 
Whither?  A  usage  of  comparatively  recent  origin  is  the  ac- 
cusative after  verbs  commonly  intransitive  in  connexion  with  a 
predicative  adjective ;  cf. :  to  cry  one's  eyes  red — to  wash  one's 
forehead  cool — to  eat  oneself  full — to  dance  oneself  tired — to  cry 
oneself  hoarse,  etc.  In  these  cases,  therefore,  we  should  have  a 
widening  of  the  signification.  Still  we  must  take  into  considera- 
tion that  special  factors  have  contributed  to  start  this  construc- 
tion ;  on  the  one  hand,  probably,  the  feeling — not  yet  thoroughly 
extinct — for  the  general  signification  of  the  accusative ;  on 
the  other,  the  analogy  of  cases  like  to  shoot  a  man  dead— to 
buy  a  man  free — to  strike  a  man  dumb — to  beat  black  and  blue, 
etc.  The  case  is  similar  in  constructions  like  those  in  the  vulgar 
phrases  to  talk  one's  head  off^to  worm  oneself  into  another's  con- 
fidence— to  read  one's  own  thoughts  into  those  of  one's  author — to 
laugh  a  man  down,  etc. 

231.  The  accusative  with  compounds  occupies  a  kind  of 
border-ground  between  the  absolutely  'free'  and  the  'attached,' 
when  the  simple  verbs  are  either  intransitive  or  govern  quite  a 


different  kind  of  accusative.  We  say  a  border-ground,  consider- 
ing that  at  least  a  great  number  of  such  verbs  unite  into  a 
group ;  while  in  their  formation  and  transitive  application,  as 
opposed  to  use,  a  certain  freedom  of  movement  makes  itself 
felt.  Composites  with  be-  in  German  [and  in  a  less  degree  in 
English]  have  the  quite  general  function  of  making  an  intransitive 
verb  transitive,  or  of  enabling  a  transitive  verb  to  adopt  a  different 
kind  of  object :  cf.:  befallen,  beschrciben,  bestreiten  ;  besetzen,  bewer- 
fen,  bezahlen  ;  belabour,  begrudge,  bewitch. 

232.  The  accusative,  when  attached  to  a  definite  individual 
verb,  has,  as  a  rule,  only  a  single  meaning,  limited  by  use.  But 
multiplicity  of  meaning  is  not  quite  exceptional,  and  this  is  in 
such  cases  partly  old — perhaps  to  be  referred  to  the  original 
general  signification  of  the  accusative — and  partly  it  proves 
that  originally  one  signification,  and  one  only,  has  been  '  usual,' 
while  the  other  has  grown  up  by  '  occasional '  transgression  of  the 
usage ;  cf.  in  German,  wunden  schlagen — den  feind  schlagen — 
das  schwert  schlagen ;  einen  mit  steinen  werfen — steine  auf  einen 
werfen ;  einen  mit  dem  messer  stechen — ihm  das  messer  durch  das 
herz  stechen;  worte  sprechen — einen  menschen  sprechen;  in  Latin, 
defendere  aliquem  ab  ardore  solis — defendere  ardorem  solis  ab 
aliquo ;  prohibere  calamitatem  a  provincia—prohibere  provinciam 
calamitate  [in  English,  toke^  a  man  from  harm— to  keep  harm  from 
a  man  ;  to  stick  a  knife  into  a  man — to  stick  a  man  tvith  a  knife\ 
Undoubtedly  the  following  constructions,  which  are  especially 
common  in  poetry,  are  a  later  development,  due  partly  to  '  occa- 
sional'  usage:  in  German,  ein  kind  schenken  {  =  saugen),  wasser 
in  einen  eimer  fullen;   in  Latin,  vina  cadis  onerare   (Verg.,*   a 

,         ^  *  Aen.  i.  199. 

variation  for  cados   vinis),  liberare  obsidioncm   (LiVY,  mstead   of 
liberare  urbem  obsidione) ;  in  Greek,i  BuKpva  reyyeiv,  'to  wet  tears ' ti^«.j4i ; 
(instead  of  'to  wet  with  tears,'  Pindar)  ;t  alfia  Seveiv,  'to  stain  =°°.«9. 

1  Such  constructions  as  the  following,  which  are  especially  common  in  poetry,  are 
of  later  development  and  partly  due  to  occasional  usa^e.     Greek  Syntax. 


blood  '  (Instead  of  'to  stain  with  blood,'  SOPHOCLES).^    \Cf., '  The 
•  Gray's OA  Attic  Warbler  fiouTS  her  throat'^*     More   examples  are  given  by 

to  spring;,  ■«  -■  i.  ^ 

Madvig,  Kleine  schriften  (p.  337).      Since  the  relation  expressed 
by  the  accusative  may  in  itself  be  more  than  a  single  one,  the 
connexion  of  one  verb  with  several  accusatives  is  a  circumstance 
which  arises  quite  naturally. 
ThePreposi-        233.    It   would   be   incorrect   to   say   of  the   IE.    prepositions 


that  they  governed  this  or  that  particular  case.  The  case  in 
question  was  rather  directly  to  he  referred  to  the  verb ;  its 
general  meaning  was  still  apprehended,  and  was  merely  special- 
ised by  the  preposition ;  whence  it  comes  that  different  cases 
could  also,  stand  after  the  same  preposition,  each  with  its  own 
special  meaning.  The  Greek  stands  in  many  respects  near  to  this 
original  state.  But  the  case  has  more  and  more  lost  its  inde- 
pendence with  respect  to  the  preposition  ;  the  connexion  of  the  pre- 
position with  the  case  has  become  matter  of  custom,  and  the  con- 
sciousness of  the  original  case-signification  has  grown  fainter.  In 
the  case  of  the  NHG.  prepositions  which  govern  one  case  only,  like 
zu,  um,  or  which  govern  several  without  any  difference  in  the  sense, 
like  trotz,  the  meaning  of  the  case  has  certainly  disappeared ;  the 
employment  of  the  particular  case  is  merely  a  traditional  habit,  to 
which  no  value  can  be  attached.  Between  the  present  absolute  fixity 
and  fast  connexion  on  the  one  hand,  and  the  original  life  and  freedom 
of  the  cases  on  the  other,  stands  half-way  the  employment  of  the 
dative  and  accusative  in  a  different  sense  after  in,  auf,  ilber,  unter. 
Apposition  234.  Appositional  construction  often  appears  when  we  ought 

and  Partitive  .  0       > 

Genitive,  if  strict  accuracy  of  expression  were  aimed  at,  to  employ  a  partitive 
genitive;  not  merely  where  the  apposition  consists  of  several 
members  which,  taken  together,  give  the  same  meaning  as  the 
substantive  to  which  they  are  appended  ;  e.g.  :  They^zvent,  one  this 
way,  the  other  that  way  ;  Classes  populi  Romani,  alteram  naufra<rio, 
^  ['  To  languish  a  drop  of  blood  a  day  '—Shakespeare,  Cymh.  I.,  ii.] 


alteram  a  Poenis  depressam  interire  (CiCERO,  de  Div.  ii.  8,  20) ;  Capti 
ab  Jugurtha  pars  in  crucem  acti  pars  bestiis  objecti  sunt  (Sallust, 
Jug,  14,  15) ;  but  also  where  the  whole  apposition  represents  a  part 
only  of  the  substantive  belonging  to  it — cf.:    Volsci  maxima  pars 
caesi  (LiVY  vi.  24)  ;  Cetera  multitudo  decimus  quisque  ad  supplicium. 
lecti  (LiVY  ii.  59) ;  Nostri  ceciderunt  tres  (Caesar)  :  and  correspond- 
ingly in  cases  where  the  subject  is  expressed  by  the  personal  termi- 
nation of  the  verb  only — cf. :    Plerique  meminimiis,   '  most  of  us 
remember'  (LiVY) ;  Simoni adesse  me  quis  nuntiate, '  one  or  other  of 
you'  (PlauTUS  Pseud,  v.  i,  37).    So  in  MHG.  :  siweinien  siimeluhe, 
'  many  of  them  ; '  j'd  sini  iu  dock  genuogen  diu  mcere  wol  bekant,  '  to 
many  of  you.'     In  the  case  of  the  designation  of  materials,  which 
would  regularly  be  expressed  by  the  partitive  genitive,  the  less  ac- 
curate appositional  relation  appears  ;  ^.,  in  Latin  :  aliquid  id  genus, 
instead  of  ejus  generis  (CiCERO,  ad  Ait.  xiii.  12,  3),  coronamenta  omne 
genus  (Cato,  R.  R.,  chap,  viii.),  arma  magnus  numerus  (LiVY).    This 
more  simple  method  of  construction  has  gained  a  wide  hold  in  NHG.  as 
against  MHG. ;  cf. :  ein  stuck  brot  (MHG.,  stucke  brotes),  ein pfund  meld, 
ein  scheffel  weizen,  ein  glas  wasser,  eine  menge  obst,  eine  art  tisch,  etc. 
cf,  the  Scotch  use  of  '  a  wee  bit  body '  see  Matz  Eng.  Gr.  iii.  309.] 
In  this  case  the  collective  material  appellations  are  indeclinable 
throughout.      We  cannot,  if  we  analyse  correctly  the  instinct  of 
language,  longer  recognise  here  any  nominative  or  accusative,  but 
merely  the  simple  stem  without  any  designation  of  case.    Language 
has  returned  to  its  most  primitive  method  of  construction,  the  only 
one  posssible  before  the  appearance  of  the  case,  and  as  it  appears  to 
us  in  the  old  compounds  \cf.,  LiVY  xxi.  24  for  Illiberi  as  oblique  case]. 

235.  As  the  object,  so  even  the  subject  of  a  verb  can  lend  itself  sabj«t of 
to  denote  a  relation  in  a  way  varying  from  previous  usage.     Cf 
NHG.  phrases,  such  as  die  bank  sitzt  voller  mensche^i,  ihm  h'dngt  der 
himmel  voller  geigen,  der  eimer  lauft  voll  wasser,  or  lauft  leer  [in 
English,  The  cistern  is  running  dry\.     In  MHG.  the  employment  of 


such  combinations  with  vol  is  even  more  frequent ;  cf. :  das  hzls  saz 
edeler  vrouwen  vol,  ouch  gienc  der  wait  wildes  vol,  daz  gevilde  was 
volkz  pavelune  geslagen  {cf.  Haupt  on  Brec,  2038)  ;'even  in  Hans 
Sachs,  den  {wald)  sack  er  springen  vol  der  wilden  tiere,  all  specerey 
voll  wiirme  loffen ;  and  a  similar  use  prevails  in  Danish.  Cf. 
further,  der  narren  herz  ist  wie  ein  topf,  der  da  rinnt  (Lu., — at  the 
present  day,  rinnen  and  laufen  are  used  in  a  precisely  similar  w^ay) ; 
dass  unsere  augen  mit  trdnen  rinnen,  und  unsere  augenlieder  mit 
wasser  fliessen  (Lu.) ;  das  gefdss  fliesst  iiber;  in  Italian,  le  vie  corre- 
vano  sangue  (MalesPINI)  ;  in  Spanish,  corrieron  sangue  los  rios 
(Calderon,  c/".  Diez  iii.  114);  in  \ja.'i\x\,  cultrum  cruore  mattantem, 
(LiVY  i.  S9) ;  brachia  sudore  flmuit  {F'LOK.  ii.  4)  ;  in  English,  the  hall 
thick  swarming  now  with  complicated  monsters  (MiLTON,  P.  L.,  523); 
[their  eyes  run  with  tears']  ;  NHG.,  der  wald  erklingt  von  gesang ;  das 
fenster  schliesst  schlecht ;  just  so  in  French,  la  fenUre  ne  clot  pas  bien. 
The  Germans  can  say  indifferently  die  blume  riecht  and  ich  rieche  die 
blume,  der  wein  schmeckt  and  ich  schmecke  den  wein.  Compare  the 
use  of  the  NHG.,  stinken ;  Latin,  sapere ;  French,  sentir.  The 
MHG.  use  of  sehen  for  aussehen  is  a  parallel  \cf.,  it  looks  bad].  If 
we  lay  it  down  that  the  relation  between  subject  and  object 
is  to  be  fixed  and  immovable  for  all  time,  we  are  compelled 
to  assign  a  double  meaning  to  the  verb  in  cases  lik&  those 
jubEtantive  236.  The  Corresponding  departure  from  ordinary  usage  occurs 
vai  Prcdi-  when  a  substantive  is  connected  with  an  adjectival  predicate,  and 
on  a  still  larger  scale  when  the  connexion  is  attributival.  Whereas 
the  adjective  ought,  properly  speaking,  to  be  employed  only  for  the 
quality  which  inheres  in  the  substantive  attaching  to  it,  we  find  it 
also  employed  where  the  relation  is  merely  indirect.  Cf.  such 
expressions  as  auf  schulaigen  wegen  (SCHILLER) — i.e.  'ways  in 
which  one  incurs  guiltiness  ;'  einige  gelassetie  augenblicke  (Goethe) 



— I.e.  '  moments  in  which  one  is  quiet ; '  der  hofffiun'gsvolhn  gabe 
(Goethe)  ;  bei  ihrem  unbekannten  besuche  (Lessing) — i.e.  'one  in 
which  she  remains  unknown  ; '  des  trones,  ungewiss,  ob  ihn  mehr 
vorsicht  schiitst,  als  Hebe  stutzt  (Lessing) — i.e.  '  in  which  it  is  un- 
certain.' Many  such  linguistic  licences  have  become  quite  '  usual.' 
We  say  quite  commonly,  a  happj^event,  a  joy ful  surprise,  happy  hours, 
a  learned  treatise,  in  an  intoxicated  condition,  in  a  foolish  manner, 
etc.  ;  and  further,  we  say,  he  gives  us  an  unhealthy  impression,  and 
a  stingy  gift,  etc.  The  word  sicher  in  German,  like  secure  and  sAr, 
refers  in  the  first  instance  to  a  person  who  has  no  need  to  be 
anxious  ;  in  the  second  place  to  a  thing  or  a  person  about  whom 
or  which  no  one  need  be  anxious:*  £/§g/ refers  on  the  one  hand  to'tof  in Exg- 

//f  A,  I  am  safe 

a  person  who  easily  feels  disgust;  on  the  other  to  an  object  at iSti't^jJe ^is 


which  disgust  is  felt.  If  such  freer  combinations  are  apprehended 
after  the  analogy  between  the  substantive  and  the  adjective  agree- 
ing with  it,  we  arrive  at  a  point  where  we  may  lay  it  down  that  a 
change  in  word-meaning  has  occurred. 

237.  Such  a  licence  is  allowed  with  special  frequency  in  the 
case  of  participles  ;  cf. :  einer  reuenden  trdne  (Lessing)  ;  Idchelnde 
antwort  (Goethe)  ;  in  der  schaudemden  stille  der  nacht  (LESSING) ; 
zum  schaudemden  concert  (Schiller)  ;  der  kdnig  betrachtet  ihn 
mit  nachdenkender  stille  (Schiller)  ;  in  seiner  windenden  todesnot 
(Goethe)  ;  nach  dem  kostenden  preise  (NlCOLAl).^  [We  can  say  in 
English  a  suspicious  calmness — a  smiling  answer — a  melancholy 
task.  ] 

238.  Common  examples  of  this  are  to  be  found  in  such  usages 
as  sitzende,  liegende  stellung—fallende  sucht — schwindelnde  hohe — 
im  wachenden  traume,  etc.,  and  the  now  condemned  phrase  bei 
nachtschlafender  zeit.  Many  similar  expressions  are  very  common 
in  English,  such  as,  dying  day— parting  glass — writing  materials 

'  Further  examples  are  given  in  Andresen,  Sprachgebrauch,  p.  82  sqq. 


— dining  room — sleeping  apartment — singing  lesson— falling  sick- 
ness. Cf.  also  such  examples  in  French  as,  tM  dansant,  cafi 
chantant.     Tacitus  has  such  uses  as  Muciano  volentia  rescribere,  in- 

*HM.-m.  stead  oi  volenti*  etc.  {cf.  Draeger,  §  193,  4).  We  find  examples 
for  the  perfect  participle  in  ein  Idngst  entwohnter  schauer  (Goethe)  ; 
in  diesen  letzten  zerstreuten  tagen  (GOETHE) ;  der  beschuldigten 
heucMung  (ScHILLER),  i.e.,  '  the  hypocrisy  of  which  I  am  accused  ; ' 
and  in  English,  the  ravished  hours  (ParNELL),  for  '  the  hours  of 
ravishing  pleasure.'  Common  examples  are  ein  eingebildeter  mensch, 
ein  bedienter. 

239.  Parallel  to  this  use  is  probably  the  custom  of  freely 
attaching  a  predicative  attribute,  which  is  indeed  condemned  as 
careless,  but  which  still  occurs  frequently  enough  in  such  cases 
as  seltene  taten  werden  durch  jahrhunderte  nachahmend  zum 
gesetze  geheiligt  (Goethe)  ;  lustig  davonfahrend  wurden  die 
eindrucke  des  abends  noch  einmal  ausgetauscht  (RiEHL)  ;  zuriickge- 

.w^ErroS'  kehrt  wurde   des  ermordeten   kleidung  untersucht  (BRACHVOGEL).t 

Eng.,  6ed.,  Andresen  cites  other  instances,  mostly  from  newspapers  {Sprach- 

gebrauch,  p.    113).      In   this  case  we  feel  ourselves   compelled  to 

supply  a  subject  to   the    predicative  attribute  ;  but   it   would   be 

equally  possible  to  fill  up  the  example  cited  above  '  mit  nachden- 

kender  stille '  to  '  ■^nit  stille,  wdhrend  welcher  er  nachdenkt '  without 

any  thing  of  this  being  contained  in  the  expression. 

Participial  240.  In  the  case  of  participial  constructions  the  time-relation 

tionl:^™-   alone  is  expressed   in  which  the    state  or   the  event   which  has 

junctions.      ]-,ggjj  denoted   by  the  participle  stands  to  the  finite  verb.     It  is 

possible,    however,    for    numerous    relations    to    subsist    at    the 

same    time,    so    that    in    resolving    the    participial    construction 

•  into    a    single    sentence    we    have    to    employ    sometimes    one 

conjunction   and   sometimes   another.      Still   we   cannot   on   this 

account  maintain  that  the  participial  construction  as  such  admits 


of  different  meanings — i.e.  that   it  denotes  now  the   reason,  now 
the  condition,  now  a  contrast,  etc.     These  conditions  remain  in  each 
case   only  '  occasional '  and  accidental.      The  case   is  otherwise, 
however,  with  dependent  sentences  introduced  by  a  temporal  con- 
junction.    In  this  case  it  is  possible  for  the  accidental  relation  to 
the  governing  sentence  to  attach  itself  to  the  conjunction,  and  to 
become  an  integral  portion  of  its  '  usual '  signification.     Thus,  for 
instance,  the  employment  of  the   word   wahrend  in   German   to 
denote  a  contrast  must  be   acknowledged  as   a   peculiar  '  usual ' 
function,  side  by  side  with  the  fundamental  meaning.      This  is 
manifest,  apart  from  our  feeling  for  language,  from  the  considera- 
tion  that   this   function   operates  no  less  where  what  is  said   to 
have   passed   between   the  dependent  and    governing  sentence  is 
not  contemporaneous — cf. :  du  belugst  mich,  wahrend  ich  dir  immer 
die  zuakrheit  gesagt  kabe.     In  the  same  way  we  must  grant  that  the 
MHG.  sit,  besides  its  temporal  signification,  possessed  that  of  the 
NHG.  causal  da,  as  an  independent  one,  for  sit  can  be  used  in  a  way 
at  variance  with  the  fundamental  meaning  when  contemporaneous 
action  between  dependent  and  governing  sentence  is  implied — cf. : 
sit  ich  ane  einen  vrumen  man  mm  lant  niht  bevriden  kan,  so  gewinne 
ich  gerne  einen.    The  development  may  then  proceed  further,  as  the 
original  temporal  signification  disappears  entirely,  as  in  the  case  of 
NHG.  weil.     In  precisely  a  corresponding  way  prepositions  such  as 
through,  by,  of  local  or  temporal  meaning,  pass  over  to  a  causal  one. 


Page  156. — Daz  h&s,  etc.  The  house  sat  (was)  full  of  noble  ladies,  and  the  wood  went 
(was)  full  of  game.     The  field  was  (pitched)  full  of  tents. 

Page  159. — SU  ich,  etc.  Since  without  a  valiant  man  I  cannot  keep  my  land  in  peace,  I 
will  gladly  obtain  one. 



Definition.      TT) Y  'Contamination'  I  understand  the  process  by  which  two/ 
X_J     synonymous  forms  of  expression  force  themselves  simul-/ 
taneously  into  consciousness,  so  that  neither  of  the  two  makes  itsi 
influence   felt    simply  and    purely :  a   new   form  arises    in    which! 
elements    of  the   one    mingle  with   elements  of  the  other.     This 
process  is  also  of  course  in  the  first  place  individual  and  momentary. 
However,  by  means  of  repetition,  and  the  intercourse  of  different 
individuals,  it  is   possible  for  the   individual  usage  gradually  to 
become  '  usual.' 
Contamina-         242.  Contamination  manifests  itself  partly  in  the  phonetic  form 
I.  Phonetic,  of  single  words,  partly  in  their  syntactical  combination. 

243.  A  confusion  of  two  words  not  etymologically  connected  is 
comparatively  rare.^  Schuchardt  has  indicated  one  characteristic 
example.  In  the  Aemilian  dialect  there  is  a  word  cminzipid., 
'  to  begin,'  a  contamination  arising  from  the  words  cominciare  and 
principiare  of  the  Italian  written  language.  The  confusion  was 
rendered  easier  in  the  case  of  forms  which  are  reciprocally  com- 
pleted into  a  paradigma.  The  older  form  wis  ('j^r),  from  OHG. 
wesan,  is  in  MHG.  gradually  thrust  aside  by  bis  under  the  influence 
of  bist.  Ohg.  bim  {bin)  is  probably  a  contamination  of  im  (Gothic), 
and  *bium  (AS.  beom) ;  a  similar  occurrence  may  be  noted  in  the 
converse  way  in  AS.  eom. 

'  [C/.  Penke's  Origincs  Ariacae,  p.  150  sqq. ;  Grober's  grundriss  der  roman  philol., 
p.  636.  Translator  .'\ 


244.  The  confusion  of  words  belonging  to  the  same  etymologi- 
cal group  is  more  common.  Cf.  gewohnt  from  the  MHG.  adjective 
gewon  (still  found  in  gewohnheit  and  gewohnlicK),  and  the  MHG.  par- 
ticiple gewent  from  wenen  {gewoknen) ;  doppelt  from  the  adjective  I 
<a?i?//^/ (  =  French  double),  and  the  participle  gedoppelt,  still  usual  in 
the  last  century;  zu  guter  letzt  from  zu  guter  letz  (mhg.  letze, 

'  departure ')  and  zu  letz. 

245.  Not  merely  do  two  single  forms  suffer  reciprocal  contami- 
nation, but  single  forms  affect  each  other  similarly.  In  this  way 
then  there  arises  not  unfrequently  a  pleonasm  of  the  formative 
elements,  a  form  composed  in  an  unusual  way  being  further 
enriched  by  the  suffix  of  the  regular  formation.  Under  this  head  ^ 
come  forms  like  NHG.  ihrer,  iknen,  derer,  denen  ;  OHG.  inan  (from 
in  influenced  by  blintan,  etc.) ;  NHG.  Fritzens,  Martens,  from  the 
older  Fritzen,  Marten,  forms  which  have  been  affected  by  the  most  / 
common  genitival  termination.  Further,  words  like  the  Latin 
jactitare,  cantitare,  ventitare,  instead  oi  jactare,  etc.,  have  arisen 
under  the  influence  of  volitare,  etc. ;  and  Spanish  adjectives,  like 
celestial,  divinal,  humanal  (cf.  MiCHAELls,  p.  38).  Especially  com- 
mon is  the  multiplication  of  the  suffixes  of  the  comparative  and 
superlative ;  cf.  NHG.  dftrer  (common  in  LessING)  ;  letzteste 
(Goethe)  ;  OHG.  miriro,  as  against  the  Gothic  maiza ;  Gothic 
aftumists,  aukumists,  frumists  by  the  side  of  aftuma,  auhuma, 
fruma  ;  hinduviisis,  spidumists  ;  late  Latin  pluriores,  minimissimus,'^ 
pessiinissimus,   extremissimus,   postremissimus ;    Greek    apeioTepot, 

XepeioTepoi;,  TTjOtoTto-To?,   etc.      [Cf.   in    English  the  forms  former,*\^'^°'^^^^. 

fr*7      TT       1  torum  mini- 

nearer,  lesser,  and  Most  Highest. \     In    the   same   way   we   must  missicmns. 

explain  the  double  prefix  in  gegessen,  MHG.  gezzen. 

246.  Contamination  plays  a  great  part  in  the  area  of  syntax.  Syntactical  | 


We  will    cite,  in    the   first   instance,  a   few  examples    of  merely  tion. 

I.  Momen- 
1    Cf.  Brugman,  Morph.  Unt.  iii.  67  sqq.,  and  Ziemer,  Streifz.  146.  '^'T'- 

^Erst   appears   in   Wyclirs  works  [ed.   Arnold,  v.   iii.]    as  a  superlative  sufBx: 
hsi-erste,  p.  363  ;  lewid-erst,  p.  355  ;   Skeat  in  N.  &•  Q.,  Feb.  22,  i8go. 


passing  anomalies  which  have  no  influence  on  usage.  Lessing 
uses  the  phrase,  um  deines  lebens  wegen ;  a  confusion  between 
um  .  .  .  willen  and  wegen;  a  similar  confusion  is  quoted  by 
Andresen  {Sprachgebrmich,  194),  from  the  Kolnische  Zeitung,  as 
between  um  and  halber.  Goethe  writes  :  freitags  als  dem.  ruhigsten 
tage,  as  if  am  freitage  had  been  written.  Lessing  writes :  ich 
habe  nur  leugnen  wollen,  dass  ihr  alsdann  der  name  m.alerei 
weniger  zukomme ;  a  confusion  between  leugnen  .  .  .  dass  .  .  . 
zukomme  and  behaupten  .  .  .  dass  .  .  .  weniger  zukom,me.  Hans 
Sachs  writes :  Ein  jedes  thut,  als  es  dann  wolt  als  jhm  von  jhem 
gesckeken  salt.  In  this  the  two  thoughts  are  confused ;  wie  es 
wollte  dass  ihm  von  jenem  geschehen  sollte,  and  wie  ihm  geschehen 
sollie.  Hartmann  von  Aue  writes  :  er  bereite  sick  dar  zuo  als  er  ze 
velde  wolde  komen  (from  dar  zuo  daz  er  ze  velde  kcBme,  and  als  er  ze 
velde  wolde  komen).  Again  the  same  author  writes  :  des  weinens  tet 
in  michel  ndt  from  daz  weinen  tet  in  and  des  weinens  was  in. 
Goethe :  im  betragen  unterschied  sick  auch  hier  der  gesandte  von 
Plotho  wider  vor  alien  andern ;  a  confusion  with  zeichnete  sick 
aus  or  something  similar.  Goethe  writes :  die  sckicksale  meiner 
wandersckaft  werden  dick  mekr  davon  iiberzeugen,  als  die  wdrmsten 
versickerungen  kaum  tun  konnen ;  here  the  word  kaum  belongs 
properly  to  an  entirely  different  manner  of  expression. 
=.  Usual.  247.   We   turn  to   cases  in  which  the  contamination  has  be- 

come usual,  or  at  least  appears  as  a  frequently  occurring  licence. 
The  construction  das  gehort  mein  is  very  common  {cf.  Grimm, 
Deutsches  Wbrterbuch,  4a,  2508);  a  confusion  between  gekort 
mir  and  ist  mein.  In  English  we  say,  '  I  am  friends  with  himl 
from  /  am  friendly  witk  kirn  and  we  are  friends ;  the  Danish 
popular  idiom  is  similar,  han  er gode  venner  med  hem  ('he  is  good 
friends  with  her').  The  Danish  popular  idiom  also  has  the 
expression,  jeg  folges  med  kam  ('  I  follow  with  him '),  from  jeg 


fdlger  med  ham,  and  ve  folges  ad  ('  we  follow  each  other,'  i.e.  '  we 
go  together').^  In  Greek  we  find  expressions  like  o  ■!jfiia-v<; 
Tov   'x^povov,*  rrjv    "TrXeiarrjv    rj)?    trrpaTta?,    a    confusion    between  *  Xen.,  cj^r. 

III.  ii.  2, 

o  Tj/j.ierv^  j(^p6vo^  and  to  '^fiia-v  tov  ■x^povov,  etc.  ;   correspondingly 

we  find  in  Spanish  muchas  de  virgines,  instead  of  muchas  virgines 

or  mucho  de  virgines ;  d.  pocos  de  dias,  una  poca  de  miel,  tantas 

de  yerbas,  la  mas  de  la  gente  (Cervantes)  ;  in  Italian,  in  poca  d'ora, 

la piii  della  gente  {Boccaccio).     Similar  confusions  are  found  also 

in  Portuguese,  Provengal,  and  OF.  {cf.  DlEZ,  iii.  15.2.)^   We  have  a 

similar  contamination  in  the  case  of  the  Latin  gerund  :  poenarum 

solvendi  tempus   (LuCRETlUS),t  from  poenarum   solvendarum    and  t  v.  23. 

poenas    solvendi;     exemplorum    eligendi    potestas    (Cicero;!  cf.  x di  invent. 

Draeger,    597  d).        Cicero   writes:    eorum  partim   in   pompa 

partim  in  acie  illustres  esse  voluerunt,^'m  which  there  is  a  confu- ^_j"- *'"'-''• 

sion  between  eorum  pars  and  ii  partem:  the  corresponding  process 

is  common  in  older  NHG. ;  cf.  theils  leute  nennen  ihn  zum  spott  den 

unverstand  (Cronegk). 

248.  Not  unfrequently,  in  referring  to  what  has  preceded,  an 

inaccuracy  arises  owing  to  the  displacement  of  a  word  by  the  idea 

of  a  word  etymologically  related  with  the  word  actually  employed, , 

where  the   speaker   might   equally  well   have    employed    either.  "' 

Thus,  for  instance,  the  idea  of  the  inhabitants  displaces  that  of  the 

town  or  of  the  country ;  cf  @eiJ,icrroK\ri<;  ^evyei,  e?  KlpKvpav,  wv 

il  1. 136. 
avr&v  evepyerr)';   (ThuC.);||  Domitius   navibus  Massiliam  pervenit 

atque  ab  iis   recepius   urbi  praeficitur  (Caesar)  ;'^  Suirium,  sociosifl"'^'"- 

•  populi  Romani  (Livy);**NHG.  so  waren  wir  denn  an  der  grenze  von^^^ 

Frankreich  alles  franzosischen   wesens  auf  einmal  bar  und  ledig. 

Ihre  lebensweise  fanden  wir  zu  bestimmt  und  zu  vornehm,  ihre 

dichtung  kalt,  etc.  (Goethe).     Other  examples  are  :  innere  stdrke 

kann    man    der  Bodmerischen   und  Breitingerischen   kritik   nicht 

'  See  Madvig,  Kl.  Schriften.  irjf. 
2  [In  the  chanson  de  Roland  we  find  '  tantparfut  bels  '=il  Halt  si  beau  ;  a  con- 
fusion between  il  etait  tant  beau  and  il  Halt  par  (per)  beau']. 


absprecken,  und  man  m,uss  den  ersten  als  einen  patriarchen  ansehn 
(Herder)  ;  het  ich  mich  nichtjung  thun  verweiben,  die  tr  mir  jetzt 
drey  jar  anhengen  thet  (the  die  referring  to  a  wife  whom  he  should 
have  taken  ;  Hans  Sachs)  ;  ^  MHG.  in  dent  palas,  der  wol  gekerzet 
was,  die  {i.e.  '  welche  kerzen ')  harte  liehte  brunnen  (Wolfram)  ; 
entwapent  wart  der  tote  man  und  an  den  lebenden  gelegt  {diu  wdpen 
must  be  suppHed  as  subject ;    id.) ;  servili  tumultu,   quos   (as    if 

*.Oc  Mad-  servorum,  had  preceded ;  Caesar).*  The  most  common  case  is 
that  the  relative  refers  to  a  possessive  pronoun,  as  if  the  personal 
pronoun  had  preceded  ;  cf  laudare  fortunas  meas,  qui  gnatum 
haberem  tali  ingenio  praeditum   (TERENCE) ;  t^?  e'/i'??  eTreicroSov, 

!onf  S«/?;'  ^^  M"^'  oKveire  (SoPH.);2tin  MHG.  it  is  universal. 

jc/Thomp-        249.  In  Latinjthere  arise  from  the  confusion  of  the  comparative 

son,  p.  20, 

and  superiative  manner  of  expression,  combinations  like  /li  cetero- 
^Agrkoia  rum  Brittannorum  fugacissimi  {Taciius)-^  omnium  ante  se  genito- 
2  rum  diligentissimus  (Pliny).^'  \Cf.  Milton's  copy  of  this  use  :  Adam 
the  goodliest  man  of  men  since  born  ;  the  fairest  of  her  daughters.  Eve; 
and  Shakespeare's  Midsummer  Night's  Dream,  v.  i.  252  :  This  is 
the  greatest  error  of  all  the  rest.]  Conversely  the  superlative  occurs 
sometimes  with  the  meaning  of  the  comparative ;  cf. :  omni  vero 
verissimum  certoque  certissimum  (Arnobius).  Compare  the  Old 
Norse  hcestr  borinn  hverjun  jqfri  (Gripisspa,  '  the  highest,'  for 
'  higher  than  any  prince '). 

250.  In  Latin  we  often  have  joined  to  the  imperative  the  word 
jam  dudum  ;  e.g.,jamdudum  sumite  poenas — a  confusion  between 
the  thoughts  '  pray  take  '  and  '  you  should  long  ago  have  taken,'  as 
if  Vergil  had  written  jam  dudum  debitas.  \Cf.  Those  dispositions 
that  of  late  transform  you  from  what  you  rightly  are  (Lear,  I.  iv. 
242)  ;  and  He  is  ready  to  cry  all  the  day.] 

'  Other  examples  may  be  found  in  Andresen,  Sprachg.  232  sqq. 
2  Cf.  Hodgson,  ut  suf.,  pp.  72,  74,  for  instances  in  English. 
'  Cf.  Ziemer  ;  Comp.  55  sqq. 


251.  In  MHG.  an  interrogation  is  common  with  the  infinitive, 
e.g. :  do  enweste  er  wie  gebaren  ;  we  expect  a  finite  verb,  and  the 
construction  is  probably  only  to  be  explained  by  our  assuming  the 
simultaneous  influence  of  those  cases  in  which  the  infinitive  was 
directly  dependent  on  the  verb,  without  any  interrogative.  The 
same  thing  holds  good,  of  course,  of  the  corresponding  Romance 
constructions.  Cf.  in  French,  je  ne  sais  quel  parti  prendre ;  in 
Italian,  non  so  che  fare  (DlEZ,  iii.  230) ;  [and  in  English  /  do  not  .. 
know  what  to  do].  We  see  a  similar  construction  in  the  Italian 
phrase  non  ho  che  dire  ;  in  the  Spanish,  non  tengo  con  quien  hablar ; 
in  the  French,  il  trouva  i  qui  parler,  and  la  terrefournit  de  quoi 
nourrir  ses  habitants ;  in  Late  Latin,  non  habent  quid  respondere 
(DlEZ,  «.j.)  ;  in  English,  how  have  I  then  with  whom  to  hold  converse 
(Milton)  ;  then  sought  where  to  lie  hid  {ib.) ;  [hath  not  where  to  lay 
his  hea({\,  etc. 

252.  It  must  further  be  regarded  as  a  contamination,  if  an 
interrogative  sentence  be  made  dependent  on  a  verb,  and  at 
the  same  time  be  made  the  subject  of  this  interrogative  sentence 

as  nominal  object;  cf.,  in  Latin,  nosti  Marcellum  quam  tardus  sit  ,^^^^ 
(Cicero)  ;    viden  scelestum   ut  aucupetur  (Plautus)  ;*  observatote  "■  ■•■  '■ 
eum  quam  blande  palpatur  mulieri  (Terence)  ;   die  modo  hominem  t  a.  1163. 
qui  sit  (Vl.K\iT:\J?,);\ patriam  te  rogo  quae  sit  (PLAUTUS);Jin  Italian,  xpers.tzs. 
tu  V  safirai  bene  chi  e  (BOCCACCIO) ;S  and  a  similar  use  is  common 

^  ^  ■"'>  §  Dec.  7, 8. 

in  the  older  Romance  languages.  {Cf. :  You  hear  the  learned 
Bellario  what  he  writes  (Merchant  of  Venice,  IV.  i.  167) ;  cf  also 
Lear,  I.  i.  272] ;  cf.  Diez,  III.  391.  Just  in  the  same  way  a  nominal 
object  stands  side  by  side  with  an  object  sentence  with  dass ; 
cf.  MHG.  swenne  er  sin  sile  scehe  daz  si  in  tdtsiinden  wcere,  die 
liset  man  si  wtlen  war  en  des  wunderlichen  Alexandres  man,  do 
hiez  in  got  das  er  dar  in  gienge,  die  wil  ich  daz  siz  merken  ; 
NHG.  da   ihn   sahen  alle,  die   ihn  vorhin  gekannt  hatten,  dass  er 


mit  den  propheten  weissagete  (LUTiiER) ;  welchen  ihr  sprecht, 
et  set  euer  gott  (ib.).  The  object  of  the  governing  sentence 
may  also  be  contained  in  the  dependent  object,  cf. :  vier- 
hundert  taler,  die  sie  nicht  wiisste,  wie  sie  sie  bezahlen  sollte 
(Lessing).  In  the  same  way  it  is  possible,  by  the  side  of  a 
subject  sentence  with  dass  as  subject,  for  the  subject  or  object 
of  that  sentence  to  appear  as  subject  of  the  main  sentence ;  cf.  : 
■mich  will  Antonio  von  hinnen  treiben  und  will  nicht  scheinen, 
dass  er  mich  vertreibt  (GOETHE) ;  and  again,  nichts,  was  ihn 
gereuen  konnte,  dass  ers  gab  {ib.). 

253.  In  German  instead  of  der  selbe  der  or  der  gleiche  wie 
they  sometimes  use  the  phrase  der  selbe  wie  and  der  gleiche  der ; 
just  so  in  Latin,  idem,  ut ;   e.g.,  in  eadem  sunt  injustitia,  ut  si  in 

*denat.  ui. suam  rem.  aliena  convertant  (CiC.).*  We  often  meet  with  phrases 
of  the  following  kind  :  dass  sie  nichts  spricht  kommt  daher,  weil 
sifi  nichts  denkt  (Lessing)  ;  der  gedanke  wurde  dadurch  notwendig, 
weil  man  voraussah  (WiELAND)  ;  wortstreit,  der  daraus  entsteht, 
weil  ich  die  sachen  unter  andern  com.binationen  sentiere  (GOETHE) ; 
in  dem  augenblicke,  wenn  wir  ihn  auch  seines  bogens  beraubt  sehen 
(Lessing)  ;  die  grosste  feinheit  eines  dramatischen  richters  zeiget 
sich  darin,  wenn  er  in  jedem  falle  zu  unterscheiden  weiss  (LES- 
SING). In  universal,  and  in  some  cases  even  obligatory,  use  are 
combinations  like  jedesmal  wenn  or  wo  (instead  of  dass)  in  dem 
augenblicke  wo  (Goethe  still  says  in  dem  augenblick,  dass  er 
amen  sagte) ;  correspondingly  we  find  in  French,  au  temps  oii; 
at  an  earlier  period,  au  temps  que;  zu  dem  zwecke,  in  der 
absicht  damit ;  deshalb,  deswegen,  aus  dem  grunde  weil;  desto 
besser  weil  (MHG.  daz) ;  and  in  English,  the  rather  because,  as 
•  well  as  the  rather  that. 

254.  When  Cicero  says  cum  accusatus  esset,  quod  contra  rem- 
{^^"■"■''■publicam  sensisse  eum  dicerent,\hG  makes  a  confusion  between  quod 


.  .  .  sensisse  eunt  dicebant  and  quod  .  .  .  sensisset.  For  further 
examples  cf.  Draeger,  §  537.  Plato  even  uses  constructions  like 
ToSe,  £09  olfMai,  avar^Kaiorarov  elvai,  Ziem.,  105  \cf--'  Marry,  that 
I  think  be  young  Petruchio  {Rom.  and  Jul.,  I.  v.  133),  which  is  a 
confusion  between  '  that,  I  think,  is',  and  '  I  think  that  that  be' — 
Abbott,  §411.] 

255.  A  common  construction  in  MHG.  seems  to  have  been 
in  gesehe  '  vil  schiere  min  liep  ('  unless  I  see  my  love  soon '),  ich 
bin,  or  sd  bin  ich  tdt.  The  same  sense  would  have  been  yielded 
by  the  paratactical  combination  ich  gisihe  vil  schiere  mtn  liep 
oder  ich  bin  tdt.  Instead  of  this  the  minnesinger  Steinmar  says 
in  gesehe  vil  schiere  min  lieb  alder  {  =  oder)  ich  bin  tot.  Another 
kind  of  confusion  is  still  more  striking,  in  which  oder  appears 
before  the  sentence  with  ne ;  ich  gelige  tot  under  minen  van 
oder  ich  nebeherte  mtn  ere  (Kaiserchronik).^ 

259.  A  predicatival  attribute  may  have  the  same  function 
as  a  dependent  sentence  introduced  by  a  conjunction.  Con- 
sequently many  conjunctions  may  be  placed  before  the  simple 
adjective,  whereby  a  more  exact  description  of  the  circumstance 
is  attained.  English  is  peculiarly  rich  in  such  constructions  ;, 
cf.:  talents  angel-bright,  IF  wanting  worth,  are  shining  instrume?its 
'  (Young)  ;  nor  ever  did  I  love  thee  less,  THOUGH  mourning  o'er 
thy  wickedness  (Shelley)  ;  Mac  Ian,  WHILE  putting  on  his 
clothes,  was  shot  through  the  head  (Macaulay).^  In  German,  too, 
it  is  possible  to  say:  ich  tat  es,  obschon  gezwungen,  etc.  Cor- 
respondingly, in  Latin,  many  conjunctions  are  placed  before 
the   ablative   absolute ;    cf. :  quamvis  iniqua  pace  honeste  tamen 

'       "^  ■  -^  ^  *  ham.  vu. 

viverent  (Cicero)  ;*  etsi  aliquo  accepto  detrimento  (C^SAR)  ;t  etsi  3.^«-^  ^^^ 
magna  aestu  {ib.  3,  95).^     The  conjunctions  quasi  and  sive,  which ' 

1  Further  examples  are  given  by  Dittmar,  Zeitsckrift  fur  deutsche  Philologie,  Ergan- 
zungsband,  p.  211.  »  Cf.  Matzner,  iii.  p.  ^^.  ^  Cf  Drager,  §  592. 


originally  could  merely  serve  to  introduce  a  sentence,  are  quite 
commonly  added  to  mere  dependent  clauses. 

257.  Conversely,  coincidence  in  the  function  of  dependent  sen- 
tences and  prepositional  determinants  tends  to  the  employment  of 
prepositions  to  introduce  dependent  sentences.  English  has  many 
examples  of  this;  cf.:  FOR  /  cannot  flatter  thee  in  pride  (Shake- 

•Hy.VI.  B., 

i-3.i«9.  speare)  ;*  AFTER  he  had  begotten  Seth  (GENESIS)  ;t  WITHOUT 
they  were  ordered  (Marryat).  [(This  use  of  without  is  incorrect.) 
'/  HATE  him  for  he  is  a  Christian,  but  more  FOR  THAT  .  .  . 
he  lends',  etc.  {Merck  of  Ven.  I.  iii.  43).]  Till  and  until  are 
specially  common  in  this  use.  [Indeed  the  prepositional  use 
has  almost  died  out  in  written  English,  but  was  common 
in  the  Elizabethan  age;  cf.  Shakespeare, /w;^  the  first  corse  TILL 
he  that  died  to-day  (^Hamlet,  I.  ii.  105),  where  he  should  be  strictly 
speaking  him.  Other  instances  are  quoted  by  Abbott,  §  184.J  It 
must,  however,  be  particularly  noticed  that  the  constructions  for 
that,  after  that,  etc.,  are  permissible  as  alternatives  to  for,  after,  etc., 
when  used  as  conjunctions.  A  preposition  also  stands  before 
indirect  questions;    cf:    at  the  idea  of  how  sorry  she  tvould  be 

s^Piei.3.  •(Marryat);!  ^^«  '^<^^b'  quarrels  about  who  shall  squander  most 
(Gay)  ;^§  cf.,  in    Spanish,  este  capitulo  habla  de  como  el  rev  non 

§  Beggar's  "^ 

operax.-,.    ^ei)a  consentir:   and  similar  constructions  are  found  in  Portuguese 

and  Old  Italian.^ 
Pleonasms  258.  The  result   of  contamination    in    the    area  of  syntax    is 

arising  from 

Contamina-  oftcn  a  plconasm.  Thus,  for  instance,  in  Latin  we  meet  with  a 
multiplication  of  particles  expressing  similarity,  as  pariter  hoc  fit 

W^Ampk.  atque  ut  alia  facta  J««/ (Plautus)  ;2|U/  the  common  but  in- 
correct German  expression  als  wie,  [and  the  English  like  as  if], 
^  Similarly  we  find  in  Latin  quasi  si,^  nisi  si.^     In  English  we  can 

'  Matzner,  iii.  p.  445.  a  cf.  Diez,  iii.  p.  388 

»  Cf.  Drager,  §  516,  14.  « 16.  §  518,  16.  ^  lb.  %  sSl.fg. 


connect  a  preposition  either  with  a  substantive  or  with  a  governing 
verb ;  the  two  even  occur  in  combination ;  cf. :  that  fair  for 
which  love  groaned  for  (SHAKESPEARE)  [cf.  also,  lit  what  enor- 
mity is  Marcius  poor  in  ?  (Coriol.  II.  i.  18)].*  Nay,  we  often  find  \%i^l^T' 

1  •  /•  n       /c^  \  Matzner,  ii. 

such  expressions  as  of  our  generals  (Shakespeare)  instead  of  49i.ed  !'864. 
of  our  general  or  our  generaPs.  Not  uncommonly  a  preposition 
denoting  whence  is  added  to  adverbs  of  place,  which  of  them- 
selves denote  the  same  direction  ;  this  preposition  should,  strictly 
speaking,  be  connected  with  an  adverb  denoting  rest  in  a  place ; 
cf  Latin  deinde,  exinde,  dehinc,  abhinc ;  nhg.  von  hinnen,  von 
dannen,  von  wannen,  von  woher,  [Span,  donde  from  de  unde ;  cf 
the  English  use  of  from  henceforth.']  In  Latin  we  often  find 
in  the  passive  a  pleonastic  denotation  of  the  pluperfect ;  eg. :  censa 
fuerunt  civium  capita  (LiVY,  iii.  24,  10) ;  sicuti  praeceptum  fierat 
(SALLUSTf).^  We  often  meet  with  expressions  V^&erlauben  Sie, 
dass  ich  mich  dabei  beteiligen  darf.  ^  ^J^s-  s^.s- 

259.  The   forms  of  comparison  of  the  adjective  and  adverb  jc/ Abbot 
present  many  examples  which  seem  instructive  in  this  connexion.i:^' ''''' 
In  MHG.  we  often  find  a  baz  added  to  the  comparative,  as  grcezer  ^^°^^ 
baz,   etc. ;  and   in   the   same  way   in   Latin,  especially  with   the  ^;;^t 
comic  poets,  we   find  magis  or  potius  ;§  in  Greek  fiaXXov  ;  *    thus 
also   in   Gothic,   mais  vulprizans.     We   find   a  similar  use  with 
the  superlative  ;  cf.  fioKiaTa  fieyia-Tov  (Xenophon)  ;  die  zundchst- 
stehendsten  (quoted  from  the  Frankfurter  Zeitung  by  Andresen). 
We  may  compare  with  this  such  combinations  as  magis  ox  potius 
malle,  prius  praecipere,   irXeov   irporitiav   (Xenophon),   Trporepov 
7rpo\aiJ,^dveiv  (DEMOSTHENES).     Lessing  writes  in  the  Laokoon : 
niemand  hatte  mehr  recht,  wegen  eines  solchen  geschwieres  bekannter 
zu  sein  [cf  :  most  unkindest  {ful.  Cces.  ill.  ii.  187) ;  thy  most  worst 

1  Drager,  §  134.  "^  For  other  instances  see  Andresen,  Sprachg.  136,  7. 

s  Cf.  Ziemer  (comp.  154,  5). 



(Winter's  Tale,  III.  ii.  i8o).]  The  comparative  is  united  with  a 
preposition  denoting  preference  ;  such  preposition  could  of  course, 
strictly  speaking,  be  only  united  with  the  positive  :  olaiv  fj  rvpavvU 
irpo  iXevdeplri';  rjv  aairaa-roTepov  (HerODOTUS)  ;*  aipercorepov 
elvai  Tov  KoXov  ddvarov  dvrl  rov  ala-'X^pov  ^iov  (XenoPHON)  ; 
prae  illo  plenius  (Gellius)  ;  ante  alios  immanior  omnis  (VERGIL).it 
\Cf.  numerous  instances  drawn  from  old  Greek,  where  the 
comparative  degree  is  used  where  several,  or  indeed  all  the  objects 
belonging  to  the  same  class  are  compared  with  a  single  object :  e.g. 
Theocritus,  xv.  139,  "E/ctw/s,  "EiKd^a<;  6  yepaiTepo<;  eUaTL  iralhwv. 
Cf.  Berliner  Phil  Wochenschrift,  No.  52,  p.  1622.]  Wolfram  von 
Eschenbach  places  the  two  possible  turns  side  by  side :  diu 
priievet  manegen  fiir  in  baz  dan  des  mceres  herren  Parzivdl  (in 
refers  to  Parzival).  ^ 

260.  Pleonasm  arising  from  contamination  occurs  most  exten- 
sively in  the  case  of  negations.  It  has  almost  disappeared  from 
the  [English  and]  German  written  language  ;*  but  in  the  last 
century  it  was  still  very  common  in  the  latter.  Thus,  we  find 
after  negative  expressions,  in  the  dependent  sentence  intro- 
duced by  dass,  a  negation  which  seems  to  us  illogical ;  cf. : 
es  kann  nicht  fehlen,  dass  die  meisten  stimmen  itzt  nicht  gegen 
■mich  sein  sollten  (Lessing)  ;  wird  das  hindern  konnen,  dass 
man  sie  nicht  schlachtet  ?  (ScHlLLER) ;  der  verfasser  ver- 
bittet  sich,  dass  man  seine  schrift  nicht  zu  den  elenden  spot- 
tereien  rechne  (CLAUDIUS) ;  dir  abzuraten,  dass  du.  sie  nicht 
brdchtest  (SCHILLER) ;  nun  will  ich  zwar  nicht  Idugnen,  dass  an 
diesen  bUchern  nicht  manches  zu  verbessern  sein  sollte  (Lessing)  ; 
ich  zweifle  nicht,  dass  sie  sich  nicht  beide  Uber  diese  krdnkung 
hinwegsetzen  werden  (Lessing)  ;   der  lord  Shaftesbury  erkldrt  sich 

^  Cf.  Ziemer  (comp.  95  sqq.). 

^  Further  examples  are  cited  in  Dittmar,  Zeits.f.d.  Philol.,  Erganzungsband,  T.ij'jsqq. 

^  It  is  very  common  in  English  popular  language  (cf.  Storm,  U.S.,  p.  256), 


aawider,  dass  man  nicht  zu  viel  wahrkeit  sagen  solle  (Translation 
of  Tom  Jones,  1771).  We  find  a  corresponding  usage  in  MHG.  dar 
umbe  liez  er  daz,  daz  er  niht  wolte  minnen  (Kudrun)  ;  ich  wil  des 
haben  rdt,  daz  der  kuene  Hartmuot  bt  mir  niht  enstaf  (KUDRUN). 
[In  Chaucer  and  Shakespeare  the  use  of  the  double  negative  is 
common,  2^5,  first  he  denied  you  had  in  him  no  right  {^Comedy  of 
Errors,  iv.  ii.  7) ;  you  may  deny  that  you  were  not  the  cause 
(^Richard  III.,  i.  iii.  90).  See  other  instances  in  Abbott's  Shak- 
spearian  Gratnmar,  406.] 

261.  As  early  as  in  MHG.  the  negation  can  be  dispensed  with. 
If  the  governing  sentence  is  negatived,  in  MHG.  the  dependent  sen- 
tence is  not  commonly  introduced  by  a  conjunction ;  instead,  merely 
the  negation  en  with  the  subjunctive  is  used ;  cf. :  mtn  vrouwe  sol 
inch  niht  erldn  irn  saget  iuwer  mcere.  The  origin  of  the  construc- 
tions seems  to  be  owing  to  the  thought  of  the  dependent  sentence 
forcing  itself  into  consciousness,  on  the  one  hand,  as  dependent 
on  the  governing  sentence  ;  on  the  other  hand  as  independent. 
When,  for  instance,  we  read  in  the  Kudrun  daz  wil  ich  widerraten, 
daz  ir  mich  mit  besemen  gestrafet  nimmer  mer,  this  is,  strictly 
speaking,  a  confusion  of  the  two  thoughts,  /  will  counsel  you  not  to 
punish  me  ever  again  and  never  punish  me  again.  This  explana- 
tion is  certainly  only  applicable  in  cases  where  the  governing 
sentence  is  positive.  Not  until  the  application  of  the  negative  has 
become  usual  can  it  be  transferred  to  the  cases  with  a  negative 
governing  sentence.  It  is  possible — nay,  it  is  probable — that  the 
employment  of  the  negation  is  traditional,  and  dates  from  a  time 
when  no  strict  grammatical  subordination  of  one  sentence  to  the 
others  existed  at  all.  Assuming  the  truth  of  this,  we  still  have  to 
deal  with  a  contamination.  Kindred  peculiarities  occur  in  Latin, 
in  the  Romance  languages,  and  in  others. 

262.  Correspondingly,  the  negation  appears  in  connexion  with 


the  infinitive,  in  cases  where  it  is  not  possible  to  derive  it  from  an 
originally  independent  position  ;  (f. :  freilich  hiiten  wir  uns  sie  nicht 
an  den  gnddigen  herrn  zu  erinnern  (GOETHE) ;  ich  habe  verschworen 
nicht  mehr  an  sie  zu  denken  (Goethe)  ;  ich  habe  es  verredet,  in  meiner 
gegenwdrtigen  lage  niemals  wieder  eine  nacht  in  Braunschweig  zu 
bleiben  (Lessing)  ;  der  habe  ilim  verboten,  den  ring  weder  der 
kbnigin  zu  geben,  noch  dein  grafen  zurUck  zu  senden  (Lessing).  \Cf. 
He  waived  indifferently  'twixt  doing  them  neither  good  nor  harm 
{Coriolanus,  II.  ii.  19,  20) ;  cf.  Abbott,  405. J 

263.  A  negation  may  also  be  found  after  an  expression  not 
essentially  negative,  but  negatived  ;  cf:  vnd gentzlich  kein  hoffnung 
mehr  handt  zu  samb  zu  kuinmen  nimmer  meh  (Hans  Sachs). 

264.  A  pleonastic  negation  occurs  in  various  languages  after 
tvithout  {cf.  Maetzner,  French  Grammar,  §  268).  Cf. :  sans  nul 
^gard  pour  nos  scrupules  (BfiRANGER) ;  sin  fuerza  ninguna  (CaL- 
DERON)  ;  senza  dir  niente  ;  sin  hablar palabra  ninguna ;  sans  que  son 
visage  n'exprimat  la  peine  (Saint-Pierre)  ;  sin  que  nadie  le  viese 
(Cervantes)  ;  NHG.  ohne  dass  wir  bei  seiner  beurteilung  weder  auf 
irgend  ein  gesetz  noch  auf  irgend  einen  zweck  riicksicht  nehmen 
(Schiller)  ;  ohne  dass  ich  weder  von  detn  vorhergehenden  noch  von 
dem  nachfolgenden  irgend  unterrichtet  gewesen  ware  (GOETHE).^ 
A  similar  construction  is  found  with  ausser:  ihr  findet  widerspruche 
uberall,  ausser  da  nicht,  wo  sie  wirklich  sind  (Lessing)  ;  ^  and  after 
als  referring  to  a  preceding  nichts,  cf. :  es  mangelt  ihm  nichts,  als 
dass  es  nicht  gekldret  ist  (Schoch)  ;  es  fehlt  nichts  als  dass  du  nicht 
da  bist  (Goethe). 

265.  A  regular  negative  is  sometimes  prefixed  to  words  which 
■n  themselves  have  no  absolutely  negative  signification,  but  merely 

cquire  it  by  litotes.     Thus  in  MHG.  we  find  nie  attached  to  selten ; 

'  Another  example  is  found  in  Andresen,  p.  145. 
*  Cf.  Andresen,  loc.  cit. 


cf. :  ein  wtp,  der  ich  selten  nie  vergaz  (Minnesinger)  ;  daz  man  nie 
deheinen  also  rtchen  sd  senftes  willen  selten  vant  (BiTEROLF)  ;  in  the 
same  way  selten  nieman  =  never  any  one.  In  NHG.  we  sometimes 
find  a  negative  word  after  kaum :  nichts  inagkaum  sein  so  ungelegen 
(Fischart)^=  '  Scarcely  can  anything  be  so  difficult ; '  and  after 
schwerlich :  schwerlich  niemals  (Lessing).^ 

1  Cf.  D.  W.,  5,  355.  "  Cy.  Sanders,  2  i,  1048  b. 


Page  164, — In  dem  palas,  etc.  In  the  palace,  which  was  well  furnished  with  candles 
(tapers)  which  burnt  very  brightly,  the  dead  man  was  disarmed,  and  (the  arms) 
were  put  on  the  living. 

Page  165. — Do  entweste  er,  etc.     Then  he  knew  not  how  to  behave. 

Page  165. — Swenne  er  sin,  etc.  When  he  saw  his  soul  that  it  were  in  deadly  sins.  These 
one  reads  they  whilom  were  the  men  of  the  wonderful  Alexander.  Then  God  com- 
manded him  that  he  went  therein.    I  want  them  to  notice  it. 



Thecondi-     T  T   TE  havc  hitherto,  in  considering:  linguistic  processes,  made 

tionsofnew        »    /»    /  '  fa  t>  jr  ' 


creation  still      V  V        it   a  rule  to  base  our  views  on   observations   made   on 


the  historic  development  of  language,  which  is  easily  traced  ; 
and,  taking  this  as  a  starting-point,  to  draw  conclusions  bearing 
on  the  original  history  of  language.  We  must  endeavour  to 
extend  this  principle  to  our  judgments  on  original  creation  as  well ; 
though  in  this  case  we  find  ourselves  confronted  by  greater 
difficulties.  We  do  not  easily  meet  with  opportunities  which 
facilitate  accurate  observations  on  this  subject.  For  exceptional 
cases,  such  as  the  capricious  invention  of  the  word  gas,  do  not 
throw  much  light  on  the  natural  development  of  language.  A 
mysterious  darkness  veils  the  process,  and  views  are  always 
being  put  forward  which  refer  to  it  as  a  special  heirloom,  now 
declared  to  be  lost,  of  the  original  human  race.  All  such  views 
must  be  decidedly  rejected.  The  conditions  requisite  for  primitive 
language-making  must  one  and  all  be  inherent  in  the  bodily  and 
intellectual  nature  of  mankind  as  man  now  exists.  Indeed,  if 
our  intellectual  tendencies  have  developed  into  higher  perfec- 
tion, we  shall  be  actually  driven  to  conclude  that  these  con- 
ditions are  now  present,  and  in  a  higher  state  of  perfection  than 
at  the  period  of  the  rise  of  human  language.  If  we,  generally 
speaking,  create  no  new  material  of  language,  this  is  simply  due 




to  the  fact  that  the  need  for  doing  so  no  longer  exists.  It  is 
scarcely  possible  for  an  idea  or  sensation  to  manifest  itself  in 
us  without  some  link  of  the  material  of  language  which  we  have 
inherited  from  it.  This  immense  mass  of  material,  to  which  we 
are  once  for  all  habituated,  forbids  anything  new  to  spring  up  by 
its  side,  allowing,  as  it  does,  of  convenient  augmentation  by  means 
of  manifold  combinations  and  by  transitions  of  meaning.  But  if 
the  experiment  were  to  be  made  of  allowing  a  number  of  children 
to  grow  up  unacquainted  with  any  language,  excluding  them 
carefully  from  outside  intercourse  and  limiting  them  to  their  own 
society,  we  can  hardly  doubt  as  to  the  result ;  they  would,  as 
they  grew  up,  form  a  language  of  their  own  out  of  words  origi- 
nated by  themselves.  Something  approaching  such  an  experiment 
is  said  to  have  been  actually  made.  Robert  Moffat's  report  of 
the  state  of  language,  as  evidenced  in  isolated  desert  villages 
of  South  Africa,  is  well  known  from  Max  Miiller's  lectures. 
According  to  that  report,  the  children  invent  a  language  for 
themselves  during  the  prolonged  absence  of  their  parents.  But 
I  phould  not  be  inclined  to  attach  too  great  value  to  such  stories 
without  ample  confirmation. 

267.  We  do  not,  however,  require  to   go   so  far  afield.     We  Creation 

has  never 

have  every  right,  I  think,  to  maintain  that  even  in  the  languages  wholly 


of  the  European  civilised  peoples  the  creation  of  new  material 
has  never  completely  ceased.  After  all  the  progress  made  by 
IE.  etymology  in  the  last  ten  or  twenty  years,  there  still  remains 
a  very  large  residuum  of  words  which  can  neither  be  referred  to  j 
roots  of  the  original  language,  nor  yet  proved  to  be  borrowed  ' 
from  foreign  languages.  Even  when  we  go  through  the  repertory 
of  the  living  German  dialects  we  find  much  there  that  we  are 
unable  to  connect  with  the  MHG.  repertory.  We  must  doubt- 
less  account   for  this    fact   in    part    from    the    imperfection    of 


our  record  as  we  have  received  it,  and  must  remember  that  our 
scientific  combinations  are  as  yet  imperfect.  Still,  however, 
there  remain  a  large  number  of  cases  in  which  it  is  difficult  to 
see  how,  by  the  aid  of  sound  development  and  formation  by 
analogy,  a  connexion  with  older  material  could  ever  be  possible. 
We  shall  thus  have  to  ascribe  to  the  more  and  most  recent 
periods  of  language  not  merely  the  capacity  for  original  creation, 
but,  what  is  more,  the  actual  translation  of  this  capacity  into 
action.  We  must  here  enter  our  objections  to  the  theory  that 
two  periods  have  to  be  distinguished  in  language — in  the  one  of 
which  the  original  material  of  language,  the  so-called  roots,  was 
created,  and  a  second  in  which  speakers  confined  themselves  to 
the  formation  of  combinations  out  of  the  material  at  hand.  The 
fact  is  that  in  the  development  of  popular  language  no  point  of 
time  can  be  assumed  from  which  original  creation  is  excluded. 
On  the  other  hand,  it  is  undoubtedly  true  that  shortly  after  the 
first  original  creations  the  same  kinds  of  further  development  as 
we  have  observed  in  the  later  periods  have  appeared.  In  this 
respect  there  exists  between  the  various  phases  of  development 
no  difference  in  their  nature,  but  solely  in  their  degree.  There 
is  no  change  save  in  the  proportion  of  original  creation  to  trans- 
mission by  tradition  of  the  material  created,  and  to  the  other 
means  whereby  language  is  enriched — the  enlargement  of  signi- 
fication by  apperception,  the  combination  of  simple  elements, 
formation  by  analogy,  etc. 

268.  The  essence  of  original  creation  consists,  as  we  have 
'already  seen,  in  the  fact  that  a  sound-group  is  placed  in  relation 
to  a  group  of  ideas,  which  then  comes  to  constitute  its  signifi- 
cation, and  this  without  the  aid  of  a  connected  group  of  ideas 
already  attached  to  the  sound-group.  Such  an  original  creation 
is  in  the  first  instance  the  work  of  the  impulse,  which  may  dis- 



appear  and  leave  no  lasting  traces.  In  order  that  a  real  language 
may  thus  arise,  it  is  necessary  for  such  utterances  to  leave  behind 
them  a  psychical  after-operation  as  well,  whereby  the  sound  can 
be  reproduced  by  memory  by  means  of  the  signification,  and  the 
signification  by  means  of  the  sound.  Further,  the  word  must 
be  understood  by  other  individuals,  and  then  be  reproduced  by 
them  as  well. 

269.  The  experiences  which  we  have  made  as  to  the  rise  of  Application 

to  original 

new  words  by  analogical  formation,  and  the  apprehension  of  new  creation  of 

the  results 

conceptions  by  the   aid   of  the   existing  vocabulary,  may  serve  won  in  other 


to    aid   us   equally   in    the    judgments  we   form   as    to   original  cfthe 

history  of 

creation.  Hitherto  we  have  always  seen  that  the  process  of  language. 
naming  the  new  follows  as  a  result  of  a  perception  connecting  it  I 
with  the  already  known,  whether  it  be  that  we  simply  transfer  \ 
the  name  already  existing  to  the  new,  or  that  we  form  from 
it  a  compound  or  a  derivative.  In  other  words,  a  connexion  of 
cause  and  effect  exists  between  the  newly-named  object  and  its 
name,  and  the  connecting  link  is  an  object  named  before.  This 
connexion  of  cause  and  effect  is  necessary,  in  the  first  instance, 
in  order  that  the  name  should  be  called  into  utterance  by  who- 
ever employs  it  first,  and  in  order  that  it  should  be  understood 
by  others.  Such  relation  of  cause  and  effect  only  becomes  super- 
fluous by  frequent  repetition,  as  the  mere  external  association  is 
gradually  attached  by  a  link  strong  enough  for  the  purpose. 
The  conclusion  that  original  creation,  in  order  to  have  come 
into  being  and  been  understood  at  all,  ne^ds  such  causal  con- 
nexion, is  certainly  not  to  be  rejected.  Now  as  there  is  no 
connecting  link,  we  must  look  for  a  direct,  connexion  between 
object  and  name.  But  besides  this,  the  possibility  of  under- 
standing is  originally  rendered  possible,  just  as  in  the  process 
of  adding  additional  ideas  to  a  word  already  in  existence,  by 



the  aid  of  the  intuition  given  by  the  situation  and    by  gesture- 
language.  * 

270.  We    have    seen    that   nothing    can,   generally   speaking, 
become  usual  in  language  unless  it  is  the  spontaneous   creation 
of  different  individuals.     It  is  a  further  indispensable  condition 
I  that  it  may  be  spontaneously  created  by  the  same  individual  at 
different  times,  and  this  without  co-operation  on  the  part  of  the 
memory.     If,  however,  the  same  combination  of  sounds  is  found 
connected    with    the    same    meaning,    at    different    times    and    in 
different    individuals,   then   this  connexion   must    necessarily  be 
conditioned  by  the  same  cause.     And  this  cause  must  be  rooted 
in   the   nature   of  sound   and   of  meaning,  and    not   in    any  for- 
tuitously accompanying  circumstance.      It  may  be  conceded  that 
occasionally  even  a  connexion  created  by  a  single  individual  on 
a  single  occasion  meets  with  general  acceptance.     But  the  possi- 
bility of  such"  occurrence  is  confined  within   definite  limits.       If 
the  first  to  name  an  object  happen  to  be  the  discoverer  or  in- 
ventor of  that  object,  so  that  all  others  receive  their   knowledge 
about    it    from    him,   then    the    name   given    by  him    enjoys    a 
certain   authority.      But   such  cases  naturally  occur  but  seldom. 
The   common   acceptation    of    the   name    given    can    depend   on 
nothing  but  its  appropriateness:    in  other  words  we  have  again 
to  deal  with   the  intimate  relation  between  sound   and  meaning, 
which,   in    the   absence   of  any   apparent   connecting   link,    must 
depend  on  the  impression  made   by  the  sound  on  the  senses  of 
the  hearer,  and  on  the  satisfaction  accorded  to  the  speaker  by 
the  activity  of  the  motor  nerves  indispensable  to  sound-produc- 

271.  Now  if  we  closely  scrutinise  words  which  may  fairly 
be  suspected  of  being  comparatively  new  creations,  we  shall 
find  them  in  the  main  to  denote  different  noises  and  movements; 



cf. :  NHG,  bambeln,  bammeln,  bummeln,  bimmeln,  batzen  (ng.  to  ring 
out),  bauzen  ( =  batzen  — '  bark  '),  belfen,  belfern,  blaffen,  blarren, 
blerren,  blatzen,  platzen,  pletzen,  bletschen,  pletschen,  platschern, 
planschen,  panschen,  pldtschern,  blodern,  plaudern,  blubbern,  plappern, 
blauzen,  boiler,  bollern,  bullern,  ballern,  boldern,  poltern,  bompern, 
bumpern,  buff,  buffen,  puff,  puffen,  btirren,  bubbeln,  puppeln,  puppern, 
dudeln,  fimmeln,  fummeln,  flattern,  flinder,  flindern,  flinderling, 
flandern,  flink,  Jlinken,  jlinkern,  fiirren,  flarren,  flarzen,  flartschen, 
flismen,  flispern,  flitter,  flodern,  flunkern,  flustern,  gackeln,  gackern, 
gautsche,  gautschen,  glucken,  glucksen,  grackeln,  hampeln,  hiimpen, 
humpeln,  hdtscheln,  holpern,  hurren,  kussen,  kabbeln,  kichern,  kirren, 
kischen  (zischen),  klabastern,  klachel  or  kldchel  (Bavarian  =  tongue 
of  a  bell  or  other  dangling  object),  klatsclten,  kletzen,  kleschen  (  = 
klatscheii),  klimpern,  klirren,  klunker,  knabbeln,  knabbern,  knacken, 
knacks,  knarpeln,  knarren,  knarzen,  knarschen,  knirren,  knirscken, 
knurren,  knascheln,  knaspeln,  knastern,  knisten,  knistern,knaster{-bart), 
knatschen,  knetschen,  knitschen,  knutschen,  knattern,  knittern,  kmffen, 
kniiffeln,  kniillen,  kmippern,  kr^spern,  kollern,  kullern,  krabbeln,  krib- 
beln,  krakeln,  krdkeln,  kreischen,  kuckern,  (cucurire),  lodern,  lullen, 
mucken,  mucksen,  munkeln,  nutschen,  pfuschen,  pimpeln,  pimpelig, 
pinken, pladdern,plumpen,plumpsen,  prasseln, prusten,  quabbeln,  quab- 
belig,  quackeln,  quaken,  qudken,  quiken,  quitschen,  rappeln,  rapsen 
rascheln,  rasseln,  rduspern,  rempeln,  rummel,  rumpeln,  riippeln,  schlab- 
bern,  schlampen,  schlampampen,  schlockern,  schlottern,  schliirfen, 
schmettem,  schnack,  schnacken,  schrill,  schummeln,  schwabeln,  schwap- 
pen,  stdhnen,  stolpern,  strullen,  summen,  surren,  tatschen,  tdtschen, 
tdtscheln,  ticken,  torkeln,  turzeln  (Hessian  =  torkeln),  tuten,  wabbeln, 
wibbeln,  watscheln,  wimmeln,  wimmern,  wudeln,  ziepen,  zirpen,  zischen, 
zischeln,  zullen,  and  zulpen  ('  to  suck '),  zUsseln  (schictteln),  zwitschern} 

1  \Cf.  the  numerous  similar  words  cited  as  occurring  in  English,  and  other  languages, 
in  Wedgwood's  Introduction  to  the  Dictionary  of  English  Etymology.  ^ 

i8o         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

Some  words  denote  at  once  a  noise  and  an  explosion,  like  klack, 
klaff ;  others  denote  a  noise  and  a  stain,  such  as  Macks,  klecks, 
klatsch.  I  have  purposely  confined  myself  to  words  not  demon- 
strably existent  till  late  MHG.  times.  It  would  likewise  be  possible 
to  collect  a  rich  list  of  words  dating  from  the  older  German 
dialects,  which  have  nothing  corresponding  with  them  in  the  other 
IE.  languages,  and  the  same  holds  good  as  to  Greek  and  Latin. 
We  cannot  resist  the  conclusion  that,  as  far  as  our  observations 
!  reach  back,  the  proper  domain  of  linguistic  original  creation  is 
to  be  found  in  words  like  these. -"^ 

272.  Because,  in  the  case  of  words  like  these,  we  recognise  an 
intimate  affinity  between  the  sound  and  the  signification,  it  does 
not  follow  that  they  really  owe  their  origin  to  such  affinity. 
There  exist  demonstrably  many  words  which,  owing  to  the 
form  or  the  meaning  which  they  have  acquired  by  secondary 
development,  convey  the  impression  of  being  onomatopoetic.  But 
an  examination  of  these  words  in  their  entirety  excludes  the  pre- 
sumption of  the  universal  play  of  chance.  One  circumstance  of 
great  weight  has  still  to  be  considered  :  the  frequent  occurrence  of 
similar  words  of  similar  meaning,  mostly  differing  in  their  vowels 
alone,  which  still  cannot,  conformably  to  the  laws  of  sound,  be 
deduced  from  a  single  original  form.  Thus  we  frequently  find  in 
different  languages  words  of  this  kind,  resembling  each  other  in 
sound,  but  which  the  laws  of  sound  forbid  us  from  regarding  as 
related  \cf.  stumble  and  tumble  in  Skeat's  Etym.  Die.  sub  verbis:\ 

273.  The  onomatopoetic  tendency  explains,  besides,  certain 
transformations  of  words  already  coined.  One  of  the  most  in- 
structive examples  is  the  MGH.  gouch=-ii\i.Q.  kukuk,  with  the  transi- 
tion iQtms.  guckauch,  kuckuch,  etc.  \cf  om  gowk  and  cuckoo].  These 
formations  also  denote  in  some  cases  noises  ;  in  some  cases  restless 
movements.      Such   transformations  must   not   be  confused  with 

i[The  Eng.  reader  should  consult  Whitney's  Lang,  and  Study  of  Lang.,  ch.  xii.. 
and  Mason's  Eng.  Gram.,  p.  131.  Translator.] 


sound-change,  and  must  be  regarded,  in  some  measure,  as  new 
creations.  Indeed,  the  words  previously  cited  cannot  be  regarded 
as  absolutely  new  creations,  as  will  be  explained  later.  Strictly 
speaking,  the  only  absolutely  new  creations  are  interjections. 

274.  This  is  the  place  to  dwell  somewhat  more  fully  upon  the  interjections 
nature  of  this  part  of  speech.  We  cannot  but  be  interested  in  the 
question  whether  we  are  right  in  thinking  that  we  see  in  interjec- , 
tions  the  most  primitive  utterances  of  linguistic  activity  ;  a  theory 
maintained  by  some,  denied  by  others.  We  understand  by  inter- 
jections involuntary  reflex  sounds,  elicited  merely  by  suddeny 
emotion,  and  without  any  design  of  communication.  But  we 
must  not  therefore  assume  that  they  are  genuine  natural 
sounds,  arising  by  original  necessity  from  sudden  emotion,  like 
laughing  and  crying.  The  fact  is  that  the  interjections  usually 
employed  are  learned  as  truly  by  tradition  as  the  other  elements 
of  language.  Association  alone  transfers  them  into  reflex  emotions. 
This  accounts  for  the  fact  that  expressions  for  the  same  feeling 
may  result  very  differently  in  different  languages  and  dialects,  and 
also  in  the  case  of  different  individuals  speaking  the  same  dialect*  ja'^/g^^;! 
The  fact  holds  good  in  the  most  different  languages  that  interjec- 
tions owe  their  origin  to  other  words  and  groups  of  words :  cf.  ach 
^ott,  alle  wetter,  Gott  set  dank,  leider,  \dear  me!  Heavens  1  etc.]. 
The  origin  may  be  so  completely  obscured  by  sound-changes  as  to 
be  past  recognition,  even  by  the  aid  of  reflexion  :  cf.  herrje  !  {herr 
Jesus),  jemine  (Jesu  Domine)  [Zounds,  by  Jeminy  r[.  Thus  in  deal- 
ing with  interjections  which  admit  of  no  analysis,  and  which  seem 
perfectly  simple,  we  are  from  the  outset  exposed  to  doubt  as  to 
whether  they  did  not  come  into  being  in  the  same  way.  But, 
on  the  other  hand,  we  meet  among  interjections  of  indisputably 
recent  origin,  and  fairly  certain  etymology,  a  considerable  number 
which  seem  to  own  affinity  to  no  other  words — or  only  to  the 


category  cited  above — and  very  probably  owe  their  origin  im- 
mediately to  reflexive  emotion.  Most  of  these,  and  those  which 
bear  the  strongest  stamp  of  individuality  as  regards  the  form  taken 
by  the  sound  and  the  tone  expressive  of  the  feeling,  are  produced  in 
response  to  sudden  excitements  of  the  sense  of  hearing  or  of  sight. 
This,  at  any  rate,  we  must  imagine  to  have  been  their  origin. 
They  then  come  to  be  employed  when  we  recollect  and  recount 
the  causes  of  such  sudden  excitement.  I  mean  words  like  paff, 
putsch,  bardautz,  perdauz,  bauz,  blauz,  blaff,  buff  puff,  bums,  futsch, 
hurre,  husch,  hussa,  klacks,  klaps,  kladderadatsch,  knacks,  plump, 
plumps,  ratsch,  rutsch,  schrumm,  schwapp,  wupp,  etc. 

275.  Many  of  these  words  are  substantives  as  well,  or  have 
corresponding  verbs  ;  and  in  these  cases  it  is  often  hard  to  say 
which  is  the  original  of  the  two.  This  is,  however,  of  no  great 
importance  if  only  the  words  be  apprehended  as  reactions  against 
excitement  of  the  feelings.  The  onomatopoetic  character  of 
such  words  comes  out  even  more  strongly  in  the  case  of  the 
duplication  and  triplication  often  employed,  and  especially  when 
the  elements  collected  from  different  letters  are  differentiated  by 
ablaut ;  cf. :  fickfack,  gickgack,  kliffklaff,  klippklapp,  klitschklatsch, 
klimperklamper,  kribbeskrabbes,  krimskrams,  mickmack,  pinkepanke, 
ripsraps,  ritschratsch,  schnickschnack,  schnippschnapp  (schnur),  strip- 
strap  (strull),  schwippschwapp,  ticktack,  lirumlarum,  bimbambmn, 
piffpaffpuff;  English,  criddle-craddle,  widdk-waddle,  hankey-pankey, 
ding-dong;  French,  clic-clac,  cric-crac,  drelin-drelon.  These  words 
are  to  some  extent  used  as  substantives  as  well,  and  indeed  sub- 
stantives are  directly  formed  in  this  way,  as  kringelkrangel,  tingel- 
tangel  [hurly-burly] ;  and  further  derivatives  are  formed  from  such 
formations  like  fickfacken,fickf acker,  wibbelwabbelig.  Old  language- 
material,  too,  which  has  no  true  interjectional  character  apart  from 
this  is  often  employed  in  the  process ;  cf. :  klingklang,  singsang, 


hick/tack,  mischmasch,  wirrwarr,  zickzack.  We  may  compare 
also  such  onomatopoetic  false  formations  as  klinglingling  (possibly 
derived  from  klingklingkling\  and  hoppsasa.  There  are  other 
words  due  to  the  same  impulse,  which  confine  themselves,  how- 
ever, to  the  limits  of  regular  language,  such  as  combinations  of 
several  words  echoing  the  sound,  and  differing  only  in  their 
vowels,  such  as  flimmen  und  flammen,  flimmern  und  flammern, 
kickezen  und  kackezen,  klippen  und  klappen,  klippern  und  klappern, 
klistern  und  klastern,  klitschern  und  klatschern,  knistern  und  knas- 
tern,  knittern  und  knattern,  krimmen  und  krammen,  kritzen  und 
kratzen,  gekritz  und  gekratz,  rischeln  und  rascheln.  All  these 
occur  in  the  works  of  standard  authors. 

276.  Most  words  belonging  to  nursery  language  are  onomato-  Nursery  \  \  1 


poetic,  and  reduplication  plays  an  important  part  in  these  as 
well ;  cf.,  in  German,  wauwau,  putput,  papa,  mama,  etc. ;  \bow- 
wow,  puff-puff,  etc.].  This  language  is  not  an  invention  of  children, 
but  is  handed  down  to  them  just  like  any  other  language.  Its 
value  consists  in  the  fact  that  it  serves  to  aid  the  purpose  of 
the  teacher.  The  more  intimate  relation  of  the  sound  to  the 
meaning  which  still  exists  therein,  and  is  in  any  case  constantly 
being  renewed,  facilitates  considerably  the  connexion  of  both. 
This  indeed  goes  so  far  that  actually  words  of  the  language  of 
culture  are  to  some  extent  learnt  in  the  first  instance  composed 
with  words  of  nursery  language  ;  cf.,  wauwauhund,  bdschaf,  puthuhn 
\moo-cow,  baa-sheep,  etc.]. 

277.  There  is,  again,  a  notable  difference  between  the  original 
creations  whereby  a  language  which  has  already  arrived  at  a 
state  of  culture  is  enriched,  and  those  with  which  language 
creation  has  universally  begun.  The  former,  where  they  are 
not  pure  interjections,  simply  accommodate  themselves  to  the 
existing   form   system.      They   appear  with   the   derivation   and 


flexion  syllables  common  at  the  time  when  they  were  created. 
For  instance,  assuming  poltern  to  be  a  word  of  this  sort,  polt  is 
the  only  part  due  to  original  creation  ;  em  is  formed  by  analogy. 
And  thus  in  such  a  word  as  this  we  can  recognise  only  a  partial 
original  creation.  We  gather,  moreover,  from  this  example  that 
what  we  commonly  abstract,  as  the  root,  from  a  word,  need 
certainly  never  have  existed  as  an  independent  element,  not 
even  in  an  older  phonetic  form ;  but  immediately  upon  its 
appearance  may  be  provided  with  one  or  several  suffixes,  and 
indeed  must  be  so  provided  if  the  exigencies  of  the  language 
of  the  day  require  it. 

278.  Not  merely  are  suffixes  created  according  to  the  analogy 
of  the  material  of  language  at  hand,  but  the  function  of  words 
as  substantive,  verb,  etc.,  is  determined  by  the  same  analogy, 
and  thus  an  element  is  imported  into  the  new  words  which 
does  not  depend  upon  original  creation. 
The  first  279.  We  cannot  of  course  suppose  that  analogy  co-operated 

creations  ...  .  , 

belonged  to  m  this  manner  m  the  case  of  the  first  creations  with  which  lan- 
maticai  guagc  began.  No  trace  of  any  grammatical  category  is  seen  in 
denoted  '  them.  They  answer  to  entire  conceptions.  They  are  primitive 
S'-tuftions,  sentences  of  which  we  may  form  an  idea  from  such  sen- 
*».  118,  §    tences   as  fire! — thieves  !* s'adk&n  in  a  single  word.      Thev  are 

I75i  supra.  t.  o  j 

thus,  like  these,  strictly  speaking,  predicates,  and  a  sense-impres- 
sion forms  their  subject.  For  a  human  being  to  arrive  at  the 
utterance  of  any  such  sentence,  something  definite  must  be 
selected  from  the  store  of  all  that  falls  at  the  same  time 
into  his  perception.  Now  this  selection  cannot  be  made  by 
any  logical  operation,  and  must  therefore  be  due  to  the  outer 
world.  Something  must  come  to  pass  which  directs  th-  atten- 
tion to  a  definite  goal.  It  is  not  the  world  of  rest  and  silence, 
but  the  world  of  movement  and  of  noise  which  first  comes  home 


to  man's  consciousness,  and  to  suit  which  he  creates  the  first 
sounds  of  language.  A  movement  of  his  own  body  may  also 
take  the  place  of  a  movement  of  his  environments,  and  serve 
to  direct  his  eyes  to  an  unexpected  sight.  The  impres- 
sion will  naturally  be  the  more  intense  when  joy  or  sorrow, 
curiosity  or  fear,  are  awakened  thereby.  Hence  the  object 
which  awakes  curiosity  is  represented  by  the  linguistic  utterance 
no  less  than  what  is  happening  to  the  object.  We  approach 
this  primitive  method  of  speech  in  exclamations  of  surprise  and 
in  emotion.  We  may  thus  say  of  the  oldest  words  that  they 
connect  the  imperfect  expression  of  a  conception,  as  it  is  at  al 
later  period  reproduced  by  a  sentence,  with  an  interjectional 

280.  There   is   another    respect    in   which    the   circumstances  and  were 

uttered  with 

attending   new  creations  differ  from  those  attending  later  ones,  no  thought 


In  the  case  of  the  latter  the  intention  of  communication  may  lend  cation, 
its  aid  from  the  very  outset ;  not  so  in  the  case  of  the  for- 
mer. We  do  not  arrive  at  a  point  when  we  intentionally  call 
an  activity  into  operation  to  carry  out  a  particular  purpose,  until 
we  know  by  experience  that  this  purpose  can  be  thus  attained ; 
and  we  gather  this  experience  by  seeing  that  the  unintentional 
activity,  or  indeed  the  activity  employed  with  another  object, 
has  had  the  success  due.  Before  the  creation  of  language  man 
is  ignorant  of  the  fact  that  he  can  communicate  anything  to 
another  by  the  aid  of  the  sounds  of  language.  This  reason 
would  of  itself  suffice  to  justify  us  in  rejecting  any  assumption 
of  an  intentional  invention.  With  regard  to  the  first  sounds  of 
language,  we  must  abide  by  Steinthal's^  views  that  they  are 
nothing  but  reflex  movements.  As  such,  they  satisfy  merely  a 
need  of  the  single  individual  without  taking  any  account  of  his 
'  Cf.  his  Ursprung  der  sprache  SiTiihis  Einleitung in  die psychologie  und  sprachwis- 

i86         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

living  with  others.  But  immediately  upon  the  perception  by  other 
individuals  of  a  reflex-sound  like  this,  together  with  the  feeling 
which  caused  its  utterance,  each  can  be  set  in  relation  to  the 
other.  The  fact  that  another  individual  feels  this  relation  may 
depend  on  the  true  connexion  of  cause  and  effect  which  exists 
between  the  feeling  and  the  sound  by  the  aid  of  the  excitement 
of  the  nerve.  If  the  different  individuals  are  in  essential  points 
similarly  organised,  then  the  same  impression  of  feeling  will 
produce  in  them  almost  the  same  reflex-sound,  and  when  they 
hear  this  from  others  they  must  feel  themselves  sympathetically 
touched.  But  no  doubt  the  number  of  the  reflex-sounds  thus 
produced  has  been,  comparatively  speaking,  small.  Conceptions, 
widely  contrasting  with  each  other,  will  have  called  into  utter- 
ance the  same  reflex-sound.  It  is  therefore  inconceivable  that 
such  a  sound,  even  assuming  it  to  be  repeatedly  produced  by 
different  individuals  in  the  same  way,  can  call  into  life  the 
memory-picture  of  a  definite  conception.  The  utmost  that 
it  can  achieve  is  to  excite  attention.  It  is  only  the  con- 
ception itself  which  gives  more  special  details.  The  fact 
that  the  attention  of  the  other  individuals  is  directed  to  the 
same  object  which  has  elicited  the  reflex-sound  in  one  or  in 
several  may  to  some  extent  be  due  to  the  accompanying 
gestures.  We  shall  have  to  suppose,  on  the  whole  question, 
that  the  language  of  sounds  commenced  by  developing  side  by 
side  with  gesture-language,  and  that  its  power  to  dispense 
with  this  aid  was  a  comparatively  late  acquisition,  and  grew 
with  its  more  perfect  development.  Gesture-language  must  of 
course  owe  its  origin  to  involuntary  reflex-movement.  This 
origin  is  the  more  easily  traceable  in  its  case,  as  we  can 
watch  it  in  a  more  primitive  stage  of  development.  If  an  indi- 
vidual  has    repeatedly  succeeded    in    attracting   attention   by  a 


reflex-movement,  whether  such  attention  be  attracted  by  his  eyes, 
his  features,  his  hands,  or  by  the  organs  of  his  speech,  he  is 
gradually  led  to  excite  attention  voluntarily,  by  the  aid  of  such 
movement,  as  soon  as  he  is  compelled  by  necessity  to  do  so. 

281.  As  soon  as  the  possibility  of  intentional  communication 
is  recognised,  nothing  prevents  sounds,  in  whose  production  the 
intention  of  communication  has  from  the  very  first  assisted,  from 
attaching  themselves  to  those  produced  by  involuntary  reflex- 
movement.  We  lay  stress  upon  the  words  intention  of  com- 
munication, because  there  is  no  intention  of  creating  a  lasting 
instrument  of  communication.  Any  such  intention  remains 
excluded  from  original  creation  as  from  the  regular  development 
of  language.  It  is  the  necessity  of  the  moment  which  produces 
a  new  sound-group.  But  whether  such  sound-group  disappears 
with  the  first  production,  or  whether  it  leaves  behind  a  lasting 
effect,  this  depends  on  its  adaptability  and  on  many  fortuitous 

282.  We  have  yet  to  take  notice  of  a  difficulty  which  must  incapacity 

of  primitive 

be  surmounted  before  even  the  first  rudiments  of  language  can™™  to  pro- 
duce speech 

be  formed,  a  difficulty  which  appears  to  have  been  hitherto  at  win. 
appreciated  by  no  one.  The  original  human  being,  who  has  as 
yet  not  spoken  at  all,  is  as  unable  as  a  new-born  babe  to  utter 
at  will  any  sound  of  speech.  He  has  to  learn  such  sound  first : 
in  his  case  also  it  is  only  gradually,  owing  to  manifold  activity  of 
the  organs  of  language,  that  a  motory  sensation  associated  with  a 
sound-formation  can  develop,  which  may  then  serve  as  a  regulator 
for  his  future  speech.  We  must  not  therefore  suppose  that  a  sound, 
group,  as  it  has  once  been  uttered  by  an  individual,  could 
immediately  be  imitated  by  others.  Indeed  even  the  same 
individual  could  not  voluntarily  repeat  it.  The  problem  is 
harder  for  the  original  human  being  than  for  the  children  of  our 


time.  The  latter  are,  commonly  speaking,  surrounded  by  a  number 
of  their  fellow-beings  in  whom '  essentially  identical  motory 
sensations  have  already  developed.  They  hear,  therefore,  out  of 
the  whole  series  of  possible  sounds  a  definite  and  limited  number 
ever  anew.  Thereby  a  definite  tendency  is  given  from  the  very 
outset,  in  the  direction  of  which  their  own  motory  sensations 
develop,  and  to  which  their  attempts  at  language  approach  ever 
more  nearly.  There  is  no  fixed  rule  or  authority  for  human 
beings  before  the  creation  of  language.  It  seems  accordingly 
that  language  must  have  begun  with  a  confused  utterance  of  the 
most  various  articulations  such  as  we  never  find  combined  in  any 
language.  But  how  out  of  such  a  chaos  could  consistency  in 
motory  sensation  develop  ? 

283.  These  considerations  force  us  once  more  to  the  conclu- 
sion that  certain  sound-groups  must  very  frequently  be  produced 
not  merely  from  the  same  individuals,  but  from  different  ones 
spontaneously ;  i.e.  without  the  co-operation  of  any  sort  of  imi^ 
tation,  and  to  all  intents  contemporaneously.  In  the  absence 
of  a  rule  for  guidance,  no  motory  sensation  can  take  form, 
except  for  such  sound-groups  as  are  favoured  by  their  natural 
conditions.  Among  these  stand  first  and  foremost  the  pure 
reflex-sounds,  and  it  is  in  connexion  with  these  that  the  first 
motory  sensations  will  have  developed  themselves.  We  can 
hardly  fancy  the  process  to  have  been  other  than  this:  the 
motory  sensations  connected  with  the  single  sounds  must  have 
developed  very  slowly  one  after  the  other,  and  the  traditional 
language  must  have  contented  itself  at  its  origin  with  a  minimum 
of  sound-signs,  even  though,  during  the  process  of  development, 
different  sounds  were  on  difierent  occasions  uttered  by  the  diff'erent 

284.  It  is  plain  from  what  we  have  laid    do\yn   that  a  long 


period  of  linguistic  activity  must  have  preceded,  before  anything  Reproduc- 
tion neces- 

came   into  being  worthy  to  be  called  a  language,  in  the  sense  sary  to  the 


in  which  we  speak,  say,  of  the  German  and  French  languages,  of  language. 
This  holds  good  even  if  the  language  consist  but  of  a  couple  of 
words.  What  we  have  called  original  creation  is  of  itself  in- 
sufficient to  form  a  language.  Its  product  must  be  stored  up  in 
memory  by  individuals  who  belong  to  one  linguistic  community. 
True  language  does  not  exist  until  speech  and  apprehension  depend  j 
upon  reproduction. 

285.  Now  if  we  regard  this  as  sufficient  for  the  recognition 
of  the  existence  of  a  language,  no  doubt  we  must  ascribe  language 
to  many  beasts.  It  will  hardly  be  disputed  that  their  calls, 
whether  of  enticement  or  warning,  are  traditional  and  not  spon- 
taneous. They  represent  a  stage  of  development  which  must 
have  been  passed  through  by  human  language  as  well ;  the  stage, 
in  fact,  which  we  have  endeavoured  to  depict.  But  yet  another 
step  is  necessary  before  such  a  language  can  come  into  being  as 
we  iind  nowadays  common  among  the  human  race.  It  is  un- 
doubtedly of  great  significance  that  the  number  of  the  traditional 
words,  and  herewith  the  number  of  the  differentiated  conceptions, 
is  far  greater  among  mankind  than  among  any  species  of  beasts  ; 
but  the  strict  characteristic  which  differentiates  the  "language  of 
men  from  that  of  animals,  existing  language  from  a  previous 
linguistic  stage,  consists  in  something  very  different.  This 
decisive  advance  consists  in  the  collocation  of  several  words 
into  one  sentence.  Only  thus  does  man  receive  the  power  to 
free  himself  from  simple  intuition,  and  to  pronounce  judgment 
on  what  is  not  before  him. 


Possibility     '   I  ^HE  concentration  of  linguistic  elements  into  groups  depends 

of  a  regularly         I  o  o 

observed  J_        upoH  each  individual  member  of  a  linguistic  community. 

system  of 

grouping  in  Thus  thcse  groups  are  in  their  nature  thoroughly  subjective.  But 
tic  period,  ^s  the  elements  of  which  they  are  composed  are  within  any  definite 
community  practically  identical,  it  follows  that  the  formation  of 
groups  by  all  the  individuals  who  compose  that  community  must  be 
similar,  in  virtue  of  the  essential  correspondence  of  their  psychical 
organisation.  Thus,  as  we  are  in  a  position  to  describe  the  general 
linguistic  phenomena  which  characterise  a  definite  period,  we  are 
equally  in  a  position  to  propose  a  system  of  grouping  which  shall 
essentially  hold  good  for  each  period  of  the  development  of  a 
language.  This  common  material  in  the  elements  composing  the 
groups  gives  scientific  observation  the  firm  hold  it  has,  while  the 
individual  peculiarities  of  single  speakers — to  discard  exceptions 
which  disappear  in  the  great  mass — escape  observation. 
Varieties  28/.  Now  if  we  Compare  our  abstractions  made  at  different 

in  these 

systems:  times  as  to  the  process  of  groupmg,  we  become  aware  of  con- 
siderable differences — differences  not  merely  caused  by  the  loss  of 
some  elements  and  the  appearance  of  others ;  but  also  in  cases 
where  the  old   elements  have    maintained   themselves,^  they  fall 

'  I  mean,  of  course,  maintained  themselves  not  in  the  strict  sense,  but  as  we  commonly 
apply  the  expression  in  the  history  of  language.  I  have  shown  with  sufficient  clearnej.s 
how  the  process  is  to  be  apprehended  in  its  essential  reality. 



into  different  groups,  according  as  a  change  has  passed  upon  either 
their  sound-form  or  their  meaning,  or  both.  What  at  an  earlier 
period  hung  closely  together  now  coheres  but  loosely — or  indeed 
not  at  all.  We  may  properly  give  the  first-named  process  the 
name  of  isolation^  since  even  the  loosening  of  the  tie  is  a  partial 
isolation.  This  expression,  likewise,  is  of  course  due  to  our 
inevitable  employment  of  abstractions.  Strictly  speaking,  it 
would  be  wrong  to  say  that  what  was  before  united  has  become 
isolated  ;  we  might  only  maintain  that  what  was  in  the  minds  of  a 
former  generation  united,  is  no  longer  so  in  the  minds  of  a  later 
generation.  • 

288.  The  formation  of  groups  depends  upon  the  similarity  or  System      \ 

',      _  conditioned  ' 

yy   identity  of  the  sound-form  and  of  the  meaning.     This  similarity  or  solely  by 


identity  depends  eventually,  in  by  far  the  greatest  number  of  cases,  encein 

form  and 

^  on  etymological  connexion.  But  etymological  connexion  is  not  in  meaning.  , 
itself  absolutely  decisive  in  producing  the  union,  but  only  in  as 
far  as  it  manifests  itself  in  each  linguistic  stage  in  a  total  or 
partial  identity  of  sound  and  meaning ;  and  conversely,  each  cor- 
respondence, as  it  may  casually  arise,  has  the  same  consequence. 
Numerous  errors  of  the  old  school  of  philology  are  due  to  the  non- 
recognition  of  this  indisputable  fact. 

289.  We  have  to  consider,  in  this  Chapter,  in  the  first  place,  the  Causes  of , 


loosening  and  dislocation  of  the  groups.  This  is  due  to  change  in 
sound  ■a.'oA  change  in  meaning;  sometimes  to  analogical  formation 
as  well.  No  doubt  the  latter  operates,  as  we  shall  see  further, 
chiefly  in  promoting  the  reconstruction  of  the  union,  now  broken  ; 
but  since  different  principles  of  analogy  cancel  each  other,  it  may 
have  the  contrary  effect. 

290.  We  have  already  seen  in  Chapter  IV.  that  the  different 
significations  of  a  word  may  tend  to  isolate  themselves  more  and 
more  completely  from  each  other.     We  have  seen  in  the  same 

192         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

*p.  88.        Chapter*that  a  word  regarded  as  the  element  of  a  firm  syntactical 
connexion  may  isolate  itself  as  against  its  ordinary  method  of 
application.     In  the  same  way  the  groups  of  words  and  word- 
forms  described  in  Chapter  V.  may  be  dislocated. 
Destruction  29 1.  The  etymologico-phonetic  groups  are  deranged  when,  from 

(i)Etyinoio-  whatever  reason,  the  conditions  which  have  caused    the  sound- 


groups.  change,  and  by  whose  guidance,  aided  by  analogy,  they  have 
proceeded,  disappear.  According  to  Verner's  Law,  in  the  original 
German  a  regular  change  has  set  in  between  the  hard  and  the  soft 
fricative  (^-^,  ]i-«.  f-t,  s-z),  and  this  change  depends  upon  the  posi- 
tion of  the  accent  according  to  the  original  IE.  method  of  accentua- 
tion. On  the  replacement  of  this  method  by  the  younger  and  speci- 
ally German  method  of  accentuation,  there  was  no  longer  any 
appreciable  reason  for  the  change,  which  accordingly  could  not  but 
appear  a  matter  of  perfect  caprice.  A  general  feeling  might,  no 
doubt,  grow  up,  that  the  sounds  in  question  had  a  habit  of 
interchanging,  but  it  was  impossible  for  speakers  to  accommodate 
themselves  to  the  usage  of  language  in  any  other  way  than  by 
mastering  each  several  form  specially.  The  sound-change  had  in 
fact  ceased  to  be  a  living  force:  it  was  stiff  and  dead.  In  the 
second  place,  it  is  possible  for  a  more  recent  sound-change  to  act 
destructively  on  this  kind  of  groups.  HG.  has,  instead  of  the 
original  German  change  between  hard  and  soft  fricatives,  the 
change  h-g  (sometimes  ck),  d-t,f-b  (sometimes  //),  s-r.  Thus  the 
single  method  of  change  has  split  up  into  several  quite  different 
ones,  and  any  such  split  is  always  equivalent  to  a  weakening. 
But  the  real  enemy  of  the  etymological  sound-groups  is  the 
assimilating  effect  of  the  material-formal  proportion-groups,  as  we 
•  shall  have  to  explain  later. 

WSyntac-  292.  Thc  cascs  of  isolation  which  can  occur  in  the  department  of 

Ileal  groups.  ^ 

syntax  have  b;en  partly  described  in  Chapter  VII.     We  have  here 


in  the  first  instance,  the  cases  of  isolation  of  the  different  meanings 
of  a  syntactic  relation  as  against  each  other.  ^  By  this  process  the 
syntactical  proportion-groups  are  not  disarranged  as  long  as  each 
single  function  of  the  condition  remains  perfectly  alive.  But  each 
case  of  deadening  by  customary  connexion  with  a  definite  word 
tends  also  to  loosen  from  the  common  proportional  connexion. 
Thus,  for  instance,  we  can  hardly  say  that  the  combination  zu  dir 
can  stand  in  any  analogous  relation  to  the  connexion  of  any  other 
preposition  with  the  dative,  far  less  that  a  more  general  function 
of  the  dative  is  placed  in  an  analogical  relation  to  it  by  the 
operation  of  the  instinct  of  language.  This  connexion,  however, 
still  keeps  its  place  within  the  limits  of  a  narrower  proportion- 
group,  and  one  in  which  the  same  member  passes  through  all 
the  proportions  :  thus,  zu  :  dir=zu  :  dem  vater=zu  :  alien,  etc. 

293.  In  this  case  it  is  possible  to  vary  at  will  the  word  in 
which  the  syntactical  relation  is  formally  expressed.  There  is 
still  another  kind  of  isolation,  in  which  this  word  is  fixed,  while  the 
other,  in  which  the  relation  finds  no  expression,  may  change  at  will. 
This  isolation  consists  in  the  fact  that  methods  of  construction 
commonly  disappear,  but  maintain  themselves  in  certain  survivals 
which  have  left  their  impress  specially  strong  owing  to  their  frequent 
use,  so  that  they  need  no  aid  from  analogous  proportions,  and 
hence  are  enabled  to  survive,  even  after  the  disappearance  of  these. 

294.  Thus    in    NHG.    there    exist    several     functions    of    the 

genitive   once   fully   alive,   but   at   the   present   day   confined   to 

the  genitives  of  some  few  words,  which   now   stand   entirely   by 

themselves,  or  crystallise  into  comparatively  small  groups,  capable 

of  only  a  very  small  analogical  extension,  or  indeed  of  none  at  all. 

To  indicate  a  point  of  time  (if  we  disregard  the  isolated  formulae 

der  zeitjener  zeit,  dieser  tage),  ndchstertage,  no  case  can  be  employed 

except  the  genitive  singular  of  masculine  and  neuter  substantives. 

1  Cf.  Analogy  and  the  Scope  of  its  application  in  language,  by  Prof.  Wheeler 
(Cornell  Univ.,  1887),  a  most  instructive  work  for  the  English  reader. 

194         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

German  admits  of  such  phrases  as  des  morgens,  eines  morgens,  abends, 
tages,jahres  ;  but  not  of  saying  der  stunde,  einer  stunde,  etc.,  and 
further,  not  of  <^^j  monats.  Moreover,  these  genitives  cannot  be  con- 
nected with  any  adjective  at  will  ;  they  appear  in  standing  formulae 
alone,  such  as  eines  schonen  tages,  morgens,  etc.  The  function  of 
denoting  the  point  of  time  is  in  this  case  bound  up,  not  with  the 
genitive  as  such,  but  with  the  suffix  (^).r,  whose  original  identity 
with  the  genitival  suffix  is  scarcely  felt  any  more  at  the  present 
day.  We  see  this  even  more  distinctly  in  the  case  of  forms 
without  an  article  such  as  abends,  morgens,  tags ;  particularly  in 
the  archaic  form  {des^  nachts,  which  is  now  differentiated  in 
sound  likewise  from  the  form  which  performs  the  function  of 
the  regular  genitive.  Certain  genitives  which  denote  a  relation  of 
space  are  even  more  isolated  than  such  definitions  of  time  ;  cf.,  des 
weges,  gerades  weges,  rechter  hand,  linker  hand,  allerorten,  aller 
zvegen.  Further,  there  are  certain  causal  genitives,  such  as  hungers 
sterben,  todes  verblichen  ;  and  again,  such  formulae  as  der  hoffnung 
and  des  glaubens  leben,  if  these  are  not  to  be  taken  in  a  different 
way.  Those  which  express  a  modal  relation  are  more  numerous 
and  not  less  isolated.  Different  applications  have  to  be  dis- 
tinguished in  this  case.  One  group  of  related  genitives  is  used 
predicatively.  German  admits  of  ick  bin  der  ansicht,  meinung, 
hoffnung,  suversicht,  des  sinnes,  des  glaubens ;  willens  is  similarly 
used  without  any  article,  as  also  anderer  ansicht,  guter  hoffnung ; 
compare  also  such  expressions  as  er  ging  fort,  der  meinung,  dass, 
etc.  The  expressions  guten  mutes,  guter  dinge  are  somewhat 
different  [  cf.,  be  of  good  cheer\  The  expressions  reinen  sinnes, 
gdttlicher  natur,  etc.,  seem  already  antiquated.  The  following  are 
immediately  joined  to  the  substantive  like  an  adjective,  and  they 
appear  to  be  no  more  felt  as  genitives,  allerhand,  mancherhand, 
einerhand,  keinerhand,  allerlei,  aller  art,  etc.      The  expression  is 

X.]      ON  J  SOLA  TION  AND  THE  RE  A  CTION  A  GAINST  /: ,        195 

also  common,  es  ist  einerlei.  Other  formulae,  again,  are  adverbially 
joined  to  the  verb,  as  meines  bedunkens,  meines  erachtens,  alles 
ernsies,  stehenden  fusses,  eilenden  schrittes,  kurzer  hand,  leichten 
kaufes,  unverrichteter  sache,  vorsichtiger  weise,  tdrichter  w.,  verniinf- 
tiger  w.,  etc.,  vorkommenden  falls,  besten  f,  keines  f,  etc.,  keineswegs, 
einigerniassen,  gewissermassen,  etc.,  dergestalt,  solchergestalt.  Some 
of  these  formulae,  as  the  ordinary  way  of  writing  them  shows,  are 
simply  regarded  as  adverbs.  The  same  holds  good  oiflugs,  sporn- 
streichs,  augenblicks,  teils,  grossten  tells,  etc.,  and  of  the  following 
adjectival  derivatives,  anders,  rechts,  links,  stets,  straks,  bereits, 
besonders,  blindlings,  etc. 

295.  The  formula  es  set  denn  dass  is  a  survival  of  an  old  way  of 
construction,  usual  in  MHG.  ;  cf.  Genesis  xxxii.  26,  ick  lasse  dich 
nicht,  du  segnest  mich  denn ;  the  same  was  even  more  common  in 
MHG.  with  the  negative  en  and  also  without  denne.  We  have  an 
unrecognisable  survival  of  this  in  the  adverb  nur=en'waere. 

296.  The  process  of  isolation  may  finally  proceed  even  further, 

since  none  of  the  members  connected  is  able  to  change  freely, 

so  that  then  each  single  formula  is  passed  on  by  memory  alone 

without  producing  any  new  combination. 

297.  It  is  no  longer  possible  in  NHG.  to  connect  prepositions 
with  a  singular  substantive  without  prefixing  the  article.  For  , 
instance,  it  is  not  permissible  to  say  an  hause,  vor  tiir,  zu  see,  etc., 
but  only  am  hause,  vor  der  tiir,  zur  see.  But  within  certain  definite 
limits  it  is  still  possible  to  create  combinations  without  any  article  ; 
e.g.,  vor  Hebe,  besorgniss,  kummer,  etc.  [to  explain  the  preventing 
cause :  thus,  Ich  konnte  vor  kummer  nicht  welter  lesen\  ;  auf  ehre, 
gewinn,  weisheit,  geld  gerichtet  (thus  auf  may  be  connected  with 
every  abstract  or  collective  to  denote  the  goal  of  the  effort) :  zu 
gelde,  weine,  wasser  werden,  machen,  and  thus  with  all  collective.^, 
but  die  arbeit  wird  ihm  zur  erholung,  zum  genuss,  der  knabe  wird 


zum  mann,  das  mddchen  zur frau.  Other  combinations,  however, 
belong  no  longer  to  any  creative  group  ;  and  nothing  perfectly 
analogous  to  them  can  be  created.  The  formulae  with  zu  are 
probably  the  most  common,  as  zu  kause^  (but  not  zu  dorfe,  zu  stadt), 
zu  wasser,  zu  lande  (this  last  is  only  used  in  contrast  to  the  former, 
and  is  no  longer  employed  like  the  MHG.  ze  lande,  analogously  to 
zu  kause),  zu  schiffe,  wagen,  fusse,  pferde,  zu  anfang,  ende,  zu  tische, 
bette,  markte,  zu  hide,  Hebe,  gute,  zuriick,  zurecht,  zunichte ;  other 
usages  are  now  limited  to  the  connexion  with  definite  verbs, 
while  in  older  NHG.  in  many  cases  a  more  free  usage  prevails ;  zu 
grunde  gehen,  zu  rande  sein  mit  etwas,  zu  berge  stehen,  zu  kopfe 
steigen,  mir  ist  zu  mute,  zu  sinne,  einem  zu  gemiite  fiihren,  zu 
schaden  kommen  (but  zum  schaden  gereichen),  zu  tode  kommen, 
qridlen,  zu  statten  kommen,  zu  wege  bringen,  zu  gesichte  kommen, 
etnem.  etwas  zu  danke  machen,  einem.  zu  willen  sein,  zu  rate  gehen, 
halten,  zu  abend,  zu  nacht,  zu  mittag  speisen,  zu  tage  bringen,  fordern, 
but  not  zu  tage  in  the  sense  of  '  on  the  day'  or  '  on  this  day,'  though 
it  is  so  used  in  heut  zu  tage.  Such  parallel  connexions  as  zu  nutz 
undfrommen  are  noteworthy,  though  zum  frommen  and  zum  nutzen 
are  correct ;  not  to  speak  of  the  phrase  sich  etwas  zu  nutze  machen  ; 
zu  spiel  und  tanz,  but  zum  spiel,  zum  tanz  ;  in  freud  und  leid,  but 
in  der  freude,  im  leide  ;  in  krieg  und  frieden,  but  im  kriege,  im 
frieden  {in  frieden  has  a  different  meaning)  ;  in,  or  durch  feld  und 
wald,  but  im  felde,  im  walde,  durch  das  feld,  durch  den  wald ;  in 
dorf  und  stadt,  but  im  dorfe,  in  der  stadt,  etc. 

298.  Another  example  under  this  head  is  the  following : — In 
MHG.  the  adjective  may  still  be  used,  when  placed  attributively, 
especially  after  the  indefinite  article,  in  the  nominative  singular  of  all 
genders,  and  in  the  accusative  singular  neuter,  in  the  so-called  unin- 

1  In  several  of  these  formula  zti  is  still  used  to  denote  rest  in  one  place,  a  use  only 
possible  in  quite  definite  combinations. 


fleeted  form,  as  ein  guot  (sckaene)  man,  frouive,  kint.  On  the  other 
hand,  in  NHG.  we  can  only  employ  the  inflected  form :  ein  guter  matin, 
eine gute  frau,  ein  gutes  kind.  But  the  old  method  of  construction  has 
left  numerous  traces  in  the  improper  compounds  which  have  arisen 
through  the  growth  of  an  adjective  into  a  substantive,  as  altmeister, 
bosewicht,  kurzweil,  Neumann,  Schdnbrunn,  etc.  And  further,  the 
uninflected  form  still  appears  in  certain  standing  combinations,  as 
gilt  wetter,  schlecht  w.,  ander  w.,  ein  gut  stUck,  ein  gut  teil,  ein  ander 
mal,  manch  mat,  ein  ander  bild  {ander  occurs  in  this  use  down  to 
the  eighteenth  century),  gut  ding  will  weile  haben.  Such  phrases 
as  j'ung  Roland,  schbn  Suschen,  lieb  miltterchen,  are  antiquated. 

299.  Isolated  survivals  are  seen  in  zweifelsohne  (in  MHG.  Si,ne 
can  be  suffixed  to  any  given  genitive),  mutterseelenallein  (in  MHG. 
aleine  is  commonly  used  with  the  genitive  in  the  sense  of '  deprived 
of),  vergissmeinnicht  (vergessen  was  once  ordinarily  constructed 
with  the  genitive),  dass  es  gott  erbarme  (MHG.  mich  erharmet  ein 
dinc= '  something  grieves  me '). 

300.  The  instances  of  syntactic  isolation  are,  to  some  extent,  at  (3)  Formal 

and  material 

the  same  time  isolations  in  the  department  oi  formal  grouping,  for  groups w by 

change  of 

this  too  depends  in  great  measure  on  the  syntactical  function  ;  cf.  meaning. 
especially  the  genitives  cited  above.  But  the  formal  isolation  again 
stands  in  close  relation  to  the  isolation  of  the  material  element,  as  far 
as  the  latter  is  a  result  of  change  of  meaning.  A  separation  of 
etymologically  united  forms  is  avoided  as  long  as  the  development 
of  meaning  of  the  single  forms  moves  in  parallel  lines.  This  will 
be  found  to  be  more  and  more  true  the  more  they  are  referred 
anew  to  each  other.  The  relation,  however,  is  the  most  strongly 
felt,  when  it  does  not  merely  hand  on  each  by  itself  by  an  effort  of 
memory,  but  when  one  is  perpetually  being  created  after  the  other, 
on  extraneous  analogies.  Seeing  that  in  the  case  of  every  new 
creation  of  any  form,  two  groups,  a  material  and  a  formal,  co- 


operate,  both  of  these  reciprocally  suit  themselves  to  the  conditions 
of  their  creative  force.  A  formal  isolation  is  almost  always  at  the 
same  time  a  material  one  as  well.  As  soon  as  rechts  ceases  to  be 
felt  as  a  genitive,  it  ceases  to  stand  in  the  same  intimate  relation 
to  the  nominative  recht.  Kunst  does  not  stand  in  the  same  intimate 
relationship  with  konnen  as  fuhrung  with  fuhren  ;  for  -ung  is  still 
a  living  suffix,  and  by  its  aid  we  can  always  form  new  substantives 
from  verbs  :  not  so  with  -st.  Indeed  we  may  assert  that  regierung 
in  the  sense  of  '  a  governing  body,'  mischung  in  that  of '  a  mixture,' 
kleidung  in  that  of  '  a  way  to  clothe,'  etc.,  do  not  stand  in  such  inti- 
mate relation  with  the  verbs  that  answer  to  them  as  regierung  in 
the  sense  of  '  the  act  of  ruling,'  etc.  For  the  living  function  of  the 
suffix  -ung  is  confined  to  the  designation  of  an  activity  ;  and  in  this 
a  substantive  can  be  placed  by  the  side  of  every  transitive  verb. 

301.  The  groups  which  depend  upon  inflexion  hang  naturally 
closer  together  than  those  which  depend  on  word-formation.  On 
the  one  hand  the  measure  of  the  common  element  is  greater ;  on 
the  other  the  feeling  for  the  method  of  the  formation  is  most  vivid. 
In  this  respect  the  position  of  the  nominal  forms  of  the  verb  is 
characteristic.  As  long  as  these  are  used  as  real  nouns,  the 
infinitive  provided  with  the  article,  the  participle  employed  to 
denote  a  lasting  characteristic,  the  connexion  with  the  remaining 
verbal  forms  is  loosened,  and  thereby  the  possibility  is  created  for 
a  further  departure  in  the  meaning. 

302.  An  enlargement  of  the  meaning  of  the  root-word,  or  of 
the  word  which  commends  itself  as  such  to  the  instinct  of  lan- 
guage, communicates  itself  more  readily  to  the  derivation,  than 
an  enlargement  of  the  derivation  communicates  itself  to  the  root- 
word.  In  fact,  while  in  the  case  of  the  derivation  we  remember 
the  root-word  more  readily  than  in  the  opposite  case,  we  connect 
the  derivation  more  readily  with  all  the  meanings  of  the  root-word 



than  we  connect  the  root-word  with  all  the  meanings  of  the  deriva- 
tion. And  hence  the  impulse  to  isolation  commonly  proceeds  from 
a  change  in  the  meaning  of  the  derivation.  The  relation  of  the 
simple  to  the  compound  is  as  that  of  the  root-word  to  the  derivation. 
303.  The  reason  for  the  discrepancy  in  the  development  of 
meaning  of  words  etymologically  connected  is,  as  far  as  it  is  not 
conditioned  by  some  other  process  of  isolation,  to  be  sought  for  in 
the  originally  exis^g  difference  in  their  function.  A  noun  may 
develop  itself  in  directions  in  which  a  verb  cannot  follow  it.  It  is 
only  the  proper  nouns  of  the  agent  and  nouns  of  action  which 
stand  in  true  correspondence  with  the  verb.  As  soon  as  the  noun 
of  the  agent  has  passed  into  the  denomination  of  a  permanent 
quality  or  of  the  owner  of  a  permanent  quality,  and  the  noun  of 
action  has  come  to  denote  a  standing  condition,  or  a  product,  or  a 
tool,  it  is  possible  for  an  enlarged  meaning  to  attach  thereto,  such 
as  cannot  attach  itself  to  a  verb.  Thus  the  NHG.  ritter  is  the  noun 
of  the  agent  connected  with  reiten,  but  at  a  later  period  comes  merely 
to  signify  a  man  who  commonly  pursues  riding  as  a  profession. 
Up  to  this  stage  it  is  closely  connected  with  the  verb.  But  as  the 
word  is  specially  applied  to  mounted  warriors,  and  as  a  privileged 
class  or  order  developed  from  these,  it  passed  into  a  meaning 
which  has  no  verbal  meaning  to  correspond  to  it.  And  thus  it  has 
proceeded  to  adopt  a  sense  which  has  nothing  to  do  with  the 
original  one.  Thus,  many  developments  of  meaning  are  possible 
to  the  adverb  which  are  impossible  to  the  adjective.  Take  as  an 
example  the  common  adverbs,  whether  strengthening  or  limiting, 
such  as  NHG.  sehr  =  yiilQ.  sire,  derived  from  an  adjective  ser 
('wounded'),  OHG.  harto  and  drdto  ('valde')  from  the  adjectives 
herti  ('hard')  and  drAti  ('swift'),  NHG.  in  the  language  of  common 
intercourse  schrecklich,  furchtbar,  entsetzlich,  fast  as  related  to  f est; 
and  also  such  as  schon  as  against  schdn. 


MBychange        304.  The  etymological  groups,  and  the  forms  which  correspond 

of  sound. 

in  sound,  and  thus  the  proportion-groups  to  be  compounded  of 
both,  undergo  operations  due  to  sound-change,  which  either  notably 
limit  the  power  of  cohesion  or  entirely  cancel  it.  A  quantity  of 
purposeless  differences  are  produced  thereby.  For  the  most  com- 
mon conditions  of  sound-change  prove  that  a  sound  very  rarely 

1  undergoes  consistent  changes  each  time  that  it  appears  in  language. 
Even  such  a  spontaneous  sound-change  as  the  original  German 
sound-shifting  process  has  found  certain  opposing  barriers  which 
have  prevented  a  systematic  and  regular  carrying  out  of  the 
process ;  for  instance,  in  the  case  of  the  combinations  sk,  st,  sp,  the 
shifting-process  has  not  operated.  A  much  stronger  disposition  to 
the  differentiation  of  sounds  originally  identical  is  given  where  the 
change  is  conditioned  by  the  surrounding  sounds  or  by  the  system 
of  accentuation.  There  thus  arise,  almost  in  the  case  of  each 
sound-change,  purposeless  differences  between  the  different  deriva- 
tions from  the  same  root,  and  between  the  different  inflexion- 
forms  of  the  same  word  ;  (cf.  e.g.  Greek  a-ri^o) — o-tL^w — o-Tt«Tos — 
aTvyjia;  NHG.  sitse — sass,  heiss — heitze — hitze;  schneide — schnitt ; 
friere— frost,  etc.) ;  the  same  derivative  and  flexional  suffixes  sepa- 
rate into  different  forms  ;  {cf.  e.g.  the  different  shapes  taken  by  the 
IE.  suffix  -ti-  in  Lat.  hostis,  messis,  pars,  in  Goth,  ansts — gabaur'ps 
— qiss ;  the  different  treatment  of  the  nominatival  termination  in 
OT^.sonr — stemn  (from  *steinr) — heill — tss—fugl {irom  *fuglr,  etc.) : 
nay,  the  same  word  takes  different  forms  according  to  its  position 
in  the  sentence ;  (cf  the  different  forms  of  Greek  prepositions 
such  as  h> — e'/i — £7,  crw — avu — icruy).  An  unnecessary  burden  to 
the  memory  for  future  generations  is  the  result.  At  the  same 
time  the  inevitable  consequence  is  that  the  single  forms,  owing  to 

\  the  diminished  amount  of  sound-correspondence,  draw  now  less 
easily  and  less  firmly  into  groups.     The  result  of  this  is  that  a 


change  of  meaning  transfers  itself  less  easily  from  one  related 
word  to  another.  Thus  the  cancelling  of  the  agreement  in  the 
shape  taken  by  the  sounds  favours  the  cancelling  of  the  agreement 
in  meaning. 

305.  The  disappearance  and  death  of  living  modes  of  forma- 
tion dates,  generally  speaking,  from  an  isolation  of  sound  which 
is  frequently  material  as  well  as  formal ;  the  isolation  of  meaning  is 
a  later  matter.  We  may,  for  instance,  assume  in  German  a  period 
in  which  possibly  a  weak  causative  might  have  been  formed  from 
every  intransitive  strong  verb.  This  was  from  the  IE.  period 
differentiated  in  the  root-vowel  from  the  present  of  the  root-word, 
but  as  it  agreed  with  the  singular  indicative  preterite  {brinna — brann 
— brannjan,  etc.),  a  near  sound-relation  was  maintained.  But  a 
separation  had  already  set  in  in  the  original  German  period,  owing 
to  the  operation  of  Verner's  Law,  in  consequence  of  which  in 
many  cases  a  consonantal  deviation  of  the  causative — not  merely 
from  the  present,  but  from  the  singular  preterite  of  the  root-word, 
ensued.  This  deviation  entails  in  OHG.  further  deviations  in 
the  vowels.  The  causative,  deviating  in  this  from  the  singular 
preterite,  takes  the  umlaut  where  possible.  Thus,  in  MHG.  relations 
appear  like  springen — spranc — sprengen,  varen — vuor — viieren,  sthen 
— sick — seigen,  ziehen — zdch — zdugen,genesen — genas — neren.  Under 
such  circumstances  it  was  natural  that  the  root-word  and  the 
causative  should  now  proceed  on  their  respective  ways,  so  that  -in 
the  case  of  NHG.  no  connexion  is  any  longer  felt  between  genesen 
and  ndhren.  But  the  sound-changes  mentioned  have  the  effect 
of  attacking  the  uniformity  of  the  method  of  formation,  and  there- 
by the  connexion  of  the  causative  verbs  suffers  on  the  side  of 
meaning  as  well,  and  is  finally  wholly  destroyed. 

306.  The  disappearance  of  the  IE.  derivative  suffixes  in  the 
Teutonic  languages   is   due,   in   the   first   instance,   mainly  to   a 

202         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

sound-change.  Thus,  for  instance,  the  t  of  the  suffixes  -tei,  -teu, 
-to,  etc.,  appears,  after  the  Lautverschiebung,  in  five  different  forms  : 
t  (Goth,  \aurfts,  'need,'  connected  with  'paurban ;  gaskafts,  'crea- 
tion,' with  skapj'an;  mahts,  'might,'  with  magan ;  fravaurhts,  'to 
pass  away,'  with  vaurkjan);  ]>  {gaqum\s  'meeting,'  with  qiman ; 
gabaurps,  'birth,'  with  bairari);  d {-deds,  'deed,'  with  O.  Saxon  ddn; 
gamunds,  'memory,'  with  munan) ;  st  {ansts,  'pardon,'  with  unnan  ; 
alabrunsts,  'burnt-offering,'  with  brinnan) ;  s  {-gis-s,  'speech,'  with 
qi\an  ;  -stass,  'step,'  with  standan  ;  gaviss,  'connexion,'  with  gavi- 
dan).  Of  course  there  can  be  no  such  thing  as  a  consciousness 
of  the  original  identity  of  the  different  shapes  taken  by  these 
sounds.  The  great  group  separates  into  five  smaller  groups.  Of 
the  five  suffixes  none  can  be  universally  employed.  Further,  the 
connexion  with  the  root-word  is  frequently  loosened  by  changes 
in  the  auslaut  of  the  root,  as  in  the  examples  given.  Hence 
the  inevitable  consequence  has  been  that  the  old  suffixes  were 
j  deprived  of  their  capacity  of  again  serving  for  the  creation  of  new 
words ;  that  henceforward  only  the  old  formations  were  trans- 
mitted by  memory,  though  only  so  far  as  through  constant 
use  they  were  able  to  dispense  with  the  support  of  the  root-word. 
Thus,  again,  the  suffix  no  has  died  out,  because  it  had  in  many 
cases  become  unrecognisable  in  consequence  of  the  assimilation 
of  the  n  to  the  preceding  consonants  ;  cf.  fulls  =  l^S^^plnos,  etc. 
Reaction  by         307.  Thus  the  Symmetry  of  any  system   of  forms   meets  in 

aid  of  Unifi-/ 

cation.  sound-change  an  incessant  and  aggressive  foe.  It  is  hard  to 
realise  how  disconnected,  confused,  and  unintelligible  language 
would  gradually  become  if  it  had  patiently  to  endure  all  the 
devastations  of  sound-change  without  any  possibility  of  reaction. 
Such  reaction  is,  however,  rendered  possible  by  analogical  for- 
mation. By  the  aid  of  analogy  language  gradually  works  its 
way  into  more  satisfactory  circumstances,  to  a  firmer  cohesion 


and  a  more  convenient  method  of  grouping  in  inflexion  and 
word-formation.  And  thus  it  is  that  we  see  in  the  history  of 
language  a  perpetual  oscillation  between  two  opposite  tendencies. 
Each  disorganisation  is  followed  by  a  reorganisation.  The  more 
violent  the  attack  to  which  the  groups  are  exposed  by  sound- 
change,  the  more  vigorous  is  the  activity  in  new  creation. 

308.  Where  an  unnecessary  and  inconvenient  difference,  due 
to  sound-change,  has  arisen,  it  may  be  cancelled  by  the  aid  of 
analogy ;  a  form  marked  by  such  difference  may  be  gradually 
thrust  aside  by  a  new  creation  which  .  does  not  contain  the  dif- 
ference in  question.  We  may  call  this  process  unification;  only, 
we  must  clearly  recognise  that  this  term  does  not  satisfactorily 
describe  the  actual  course  of  procedure,  which,  strictly  speaking, 
consists  in  a  complicated  system  of  single  processes  as  described 
in  Chapter  V. 

309.  Unification  is  hindered  by  the  material-sound  propor- 
tions. A  sound-change  yet  living  and  supported  by  such  pro- 
portions resists  unification  for  a  long  period,  without,  however, 
setting  any  insurmountable  obstacle  to  eventual  unification.  If 
the  material-sound  proportions  are  once  broken  through,  the  sound- 
change  loses  much  of  its  power  of  resistance. 

310.  We  will  now  endeavour  to  observe  the  different  modes  Unification 

of  differences 

of  unification  a  little  more  closely.     Where  one  and   the  same  which  result 

from  differ- 

form  has  parted  into  several  different  forms,  owing  to  the  differ- ence  of  posi- 
tion in  the 
ence  of  their  position  in  the  sentence,  the  original  difference  in  sentence. 

the  employment  of  these  forms  is  lost  when  the  one  form  is  used 
also  in  that  position  in  the  sentence  in  which  phonetic  develop- 
ment has  led  to  the  production  of  the  others. 

311.  G.  Curtius  has  shown,  in  his  Studien,  x.  205  sqq.,  that 
the  final  sound  of  the  Greek  preposition,  as  well  as  that  of  the 
accusative  singular  of  the  article,  depended  at  a  former  linguistic  date 


on  the  opening  sound  of  the  following  word ;  cf.  kuS  Se — kuk 
ice(l)a\r}v — Ko/y  yovv — kcltt  TrehLov — Kav  v6/j,ov — Kafj,  fiev — Kap  poov 
KoX  Xairaprjv,  rofi  jSeXTia-rov — Toy  icpdroa-Tov — rov  BpaavTarov — ■ 
ToX  Xaa-Tov,  etc.,  while  at  a  later  date  a  single  form  only  of  these 
manifold  varieties,  or  the  adverbial  form,^  which  differs  again 
from  it,  became  the  regular  form  in  use.^ 

312.  In  the  Teutonic  languages  we  find  the  following  process 
repeating  itself  at  various  periods.  Words  used  as  adverbs  and 
as  prepositions  indifferently,  as  they  receive  the  full  stress  or 
are  mere  enclitics,  and  as,  in  their  position  of  enclitics,  they  receive 
a  collateral  stres.s,  or  have  none  at  all,  separate  into  two  different 
forms  or,  it  may  be,  more,  whose  original  difference  of  function 
however  is  not  always  maintained,  since  one  form  intrudes  into 
the  place  of  the  other ;  cf.  Beitrdge  z.  Gesch.  d.  deutschen  Sprache, 
vi.  144,  191  sqq.,  199  sqq.,  207  sqq.,  248  sqq.,  137I  To  cite  one 
example  only.  The  original  Teutonic  td  ('to'),  in  cases  where 
it  received  the  full  stress  and  remained  unweakened  in  adverbial 
use,  was  shortened  as  a  proclitic  to  *to.  From  this  the  forms 
in  OHG.  za,  ze,  zi  arise  under  the  influence  of  accentual  differences. 
These  forms  are  employed  in  some  of  the  oldest  records  indif- 
ferently side  by  side ;  in  more  recent  times  one  takes  firm  root 
in  each  dialect.  All  three  appear  in  MHG.  as  ze.  But  side  by 
side  with  this  appears  the  form  zuo  regularly  developed  as  a 
preposition,  and  in  NHG.  this  form  alone  holds  the  field.  The 
same  holds  good  of  the  forms  of  the  pronouns  and  the  article; 
cf.  Beitrdge,  vi.  137^,  144  sqq. 

313.  In  the  period  of  the  transition  from  OHG.  to  MHG.  r  in 

For  as  such  we  must  regard  i.v6.,  KarA,  rapi  in  contrast  to  av,  Kar,  irap,  with  theii 
different  collateral  forms  ;  in  the  same  way  iyi,  irepl,  irorl,  irporl,  as  against  iv,  rep,  ttot 
or  iros,  irpoT  or  Trpos. 

'  How  far  this  applies  merely  to  writing,  and  how  far  to  actual  usage  in  language, 
remains  still  doubtful  in  many  cases. 

'  X.]      ON  TSOLA TION  AND  THE  REACTION  AGAINST  IT       205 

auslaut  after  a  long  vowel  disappears  in  dd  from  ddr,  hie  from  hier, 
etc.,  though  it  survives,  and  is  maintained  in  close  connexion  with 
a  following  word,  because  it  is  then  drawn  over  to  the  following 
syllable,  thus  dar  an,  hier  an,  etc.  In  nhg.  hier  often  takes  the 
place  of  hie,  and  eventually  completely  supplants  it  in  the  written 
language,  to  say  nothing  of  the  phrase  hie  und  da.  Conversely  in 
MUG.  we  also  find  the  combinations  hie  inne,  hie  ■ilze,  and  the  con- 
tracted forms  hinne,  h^ze,  which  remain  South  German  forms  to 
this  day. 

314.  The  process  of  differentiation  and  of  unification  may  repeat 
itself  several  times  in  succession.  In  OHG.  the  form  ana  parted 
into  ana  the  adverb,  and  an  the  preposition  ;  the  first  form  then 
displaced  the  second.  In  MHG.  ana  again  parted  into  ane  and 
an,  and  the  second  then  displaced  the  first.  Aba  {ab)  has  gone 
through  a  similar  development. 

315.  The  influence  of  the  component  parts  of  the  sentence 
upon  the  sound-development  is  explained,  as  we  have  seen,  by 
the  fact  that  a  word-group,  like  a  single  word,  is  apprehended 
as  a  unity,  which  does  not  require  to  be  previously  analysed  by  the 
hearer  into  its  several  parts,  nor  to  be  made  up  by  the  speaker 
from  the  elements  which  compose  it.  Thus  the  circumstances  are 
the  same  as  in  a  compound  ;  and  indeed  there  is  no  sharp  line,  as 
will  be  afterwards  more  fully  explained,  to  be  drawn  between  a 
compound  and  a  word-group.  Least  of  all  is  it  to  be  supposed 
that  a  distinction  originally  existed  between  the  connexion  of 
the  preposition  with  a  noun,  and  that  with  a  verb.  Thus,  in  the 
case  we  have  chosen,  a  newly  created  method  of  composition  takes 
the  place  of  the  traditidnal  configuration  of  the  group. 

316.  There  are  two  different  ways  of  development  possible  in 
this  process.  Either  one  form  may  encroach  on  the  function  of 
the  others,  or  the  encroachment  may  be  reciprocal.    The  latter  case 


will  naturally  occur  when  the  different  forms  occur  with  fairly- 
equal  frequency ;  the  former,  if  one  form  occurs  more  frequently 
than  the  other.  As  a  result,  in  both  cases  in  the  first  instance, 
double,  or  it  may  be  triple,  forms  run  parallel  to  each  other  for  a 
long  period  ;  in  the  one  case,  however,  only  with  restricted  limits, 
while  elsewhere  uniformity  is  maintained  ;  in  the  other  case  they 
run  parallel  with  unlimited  application.  A  general  uniformity 
results  in  the  course  of  a  further  development,  owing  to  the 
disappearance  of  one  form.  In  cases  where  plurality  of  form 
in  one  department  is  met  by  uniformity  in  the  other,  it  cannot, 
of  course,  be  long  doubtful  which  form  will  eventually  triumph. 
But  where  plurality  of  form  has  once  become  general,  the  forces 
are  not  so  unevenly  distributed,  the  struggle  is  not  so  easily  de- 
cided ;  the  issue  depends  upon  chance  circumstances  not  always 
appreciable  by  us.  The  more  dissimilar  the  relation,  the  shorter 
is  the  struggle,  and  the  earlier  the  commencement  of  the  attack. 

317.  The  severance  of  one  form  into  several  different  forms 
may  take  place  in  such  a  way  that  a  change  occurs  under  every 
circumstance ;  but  it  may  also  take  place  in  such  a  way  that  the 
root-form  remains  preserved  side  by  side  with  a  single  or  several 
changed  forms.  In  the  last-mentioned  case,  in  the  course  of  further 
development,  the  root-form,  as  such,  has  no  advantage  over  the 
derived  forms,  for  it  is  not  recognised  as  such.  No  doubt,  how- 
ever, this  form  has  an  advantage  over  the  others  in  which  the 
word  appears,  if  it  is  independent  of  any  influence  from  the  syntax  ' 
of  the  sentence,  whether  it  be  the  root-form  or  not.  A  French- 
man, who  has  no  scientific  knowledge  of  his'  mother-tongue,  hears 
with  surprise  that  the  phrase  a-t-il  represents  a  more  original  form 
than  il  a,  and  that  in  un  ami  the  n  represents  a  more  original  pro- 
nunciation than  in  un  fils.  If  he  thinks  about  the  matter  at  all, 
he  will  be  rather  inclined  to  take  the  t  for  an  insertion,  and  to 



assume  the  pronunciation  of  the  n  in  un  ami  to  be  a  departure 
from  the  regular  pronunciation. 

318.  These  remarks  are,  mutatis  mutandis,  equally  applicable 
to  every  other  kind  of  unification  due  to  formation  by  analogy. 

319.  Essentially  similar  is  the  unification  of  forms  phonetically  Unification 

..__  .  ,         ,  .    ,  -     -  ofplioned- 

dmerentiated  which  proceed  from  the  same  stem,  or  of  words  caiiy  differ- 
formed  from  the  same  root.     We  may  call  this  material  in  con-  forms  which 

,  ^         .  .  helong  to  the 

trast  to  formal  unification,  the  latter  being  concerned  with  the  same  stem. 
corresponding  formations  from  dififerent  roots,  or  differ.ent  systems 
of  formation  of  inflexions  of  word-composition.     It  often  happens, 
however,  that  material  unification  is  at  the  same  time  formal. 

320.  Examples  of  this  are  not  far  to  seek.  The  most  in- 
structive are  certain  systematic  differentiations  which  make  their 
appearance  at  a  very  early  period.  The  following  generations 
have  often  to  reckon  with  the  reaction  against  these  for  many 
centuries  to  come,  during  which  one  case  after  another  falls  a  victim 
to  unification,  though  eventually  there  still  remain  not  unfrequently 
certain  traces  of  differentiation.  The  development  is  more  mani- 
fold and  instructive  as  well,  if,  after  the  commencement  of  the 
diff"erentiation  of  sounds,  the  language  has  parted  into  many 
different  dialectic  shapes.  The  example  of  this  kind  known  to 
me  as  occurring  on  the  largest  scale  is  the  graduation  of  vowels 
in  the  IE.  original  language,  the  traces  of  which  the  surviving 
languages  are  still  endeavouring  to  efface.  In  the  Teutonic 
domain  the  operations  of  Verner's  Law  are  the  most  striking, 
according  to  which,  in  the  original  German,  the  hard  fricatives 
^f,/ J  have  maintained  themselves  after  an  originally  accented 
syllable,  but  after  an  originally  unaccented  syllable  have  passed 
into  the  corresponding  soft  fricatives  (Gothic  g,  d,  b,  z).  The 
impulse  created  thereby  is  specially  adapted  for  methodic  study, 
especially   as   we   find    ourselves   here   upon   safe   and   generally 

2o8         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

recognised  ground.  The  philologist  who  has  been  at  the  pains 
to  follow  the  instances  of  reaction  against  any  such  sound-law 
into  every  detail,  cannot  conceivably  harbour  such  perverse  asser- 
tions and  objections  as  to  formation  by  analogy  as  are  unfortu- 
nately so  widely  in  vogue.  And  as  with  one  phonetic  law,  so  is  it 
with  the  rest.  There  is  in  fact  no  phonetic  law  which,  having  once 
in  a  number  of  cases  differentiated  in  sound  what  holds  closely 
together  in  etymology,  fails  to  produce  a  reaction  against  this 
differentiation,  unless  in  the  case  where  the  sound-change  left 
be  continuously  supported  by  analogy  (see  p.  107).  This  must 
be  recognised  as  a  fundamental  maxim  of  the  historical  investi- 
gation of  language.  We  may  examine  every  language  whose 
development  admits  of  a  continuous  investigation  to  find  a  single 
sound-law  which  has  failed  to  show,  as  a  result,  some  centuries 
after  it  has  operated,  some  kind  of  reaction.  However  great  the 
prize  offered  for  such  discovery,  no  one  would  win  it. 
Inequalities  32 1.  Whoevcr  has  followed  such  a  development  in  all  its  con- 

of  unification 

owing  to      nexions  will  not,  as  many  have  recently  done,  claim  by  an  explana- 

favouring  .  _  - 

and  hostile    tion  of  forms,  based  upon   the   assumption  of  unifications,  that 


the  unification  in  all  the  forms  affected  by  the  sound-law  must 
have  come  about  uniformly,  and  in  the  same  direction.  This 
would  be  to  demand  a  development  directly  contradicting  the 
experience  which  we  can  abstract  from  the  facts  which  we  have 
actually  to  observe.  Besides,  any  such  demand  depends  on  a 
manifest  confusion  of  ideas.  In  the  case  of  sound-change  we 
certainly  must  demand  that  it  should  make  its  appearance  in  the 
same  way  in  every  case  in  which  the  same  phonetic  conditions  are 
present.  But  identity  or  non -identity  of  the  phonetic  circum- 
stances has  nothing  to  do  with  unification.  Either  does  such 
group,  connected  by  material  relationship,  proceed  on  its  own 
course  of  development,  or,  if  several  such  groups  operate  on  each 


Other,  it  happens  owing  to  the  fact  that  formal  unification  is  simul- 
taneously at  work;  but  the  fact  of  being  affected  by  the  same 
sound-law  does  not  in  itself  yield  any  reason  for  a  reciprocal 
influence  in  the  unification.  On  the  other  hand,  there  are  many 
circumstances,  serving  either  to  foster  or  to  check  the  process, 
which  cause  it  to  have  very  different  results  in  different  cases. 

322.  To^  these  must  be  added  as  well  a  phonetic  impulse. 
Those  forms  which  are  differentiated  by  the  operation  of  several 
sound-laws  are  less  favourable  to  unification  than  those  in  which 
only  one  of  them  has  operated  towards  differentiation. 

323.  The  well-known  nhg.  lengthening  of  the  vowels  never, 
except  in  certain  definite  connexions,  appears  before  double 
consonants,  in  which  case,  on  the  contrary,  a  syllable  origi- 
nally long  is  actually  shortened  {cf.,  brachte  =  MHG.  brdhte, 
acht  =  MHG.  ahte,  etc.).  In  accordance  with  this,  the  second  and 
third  persons  singular  and  the  second  person  plural  of  the 
present  indicative  are  shortened  in  cases  where  the  terminal 
vowel  is  syncopated,  and  this  holds  good  of  cases  where  the 
other  forms  of  the  present  have  allowed  the  lengthening  to  set 
in.  But  in  by  far  the  greatest  number  of  cases  unification  has 
set  in ;  this  is  regularly  the  case  in  the  weak  verb  {e.g.,  lebe — lebst, 
lebt),  where  the  quality  of  the  vowel  was  always  uniformly 
identical  from  the  earliest  times ;  and  further,  in  the  strong 
verbs  with  radical  a:  trage. — trdgst,  tragi  (in  Low  German  with 
shortened  vowel,  drdchst,  drbcht).  On  the  other  hand,  the  short 
syllable  of  the  second  and  third  persons  singular  is  maintained 
in  those  verbs  in  which  the  root-vowel  has  fluctuated  from 
the  earliest  times  between  e  and  i :  in  nehme — ninimst,  nimmt, 
trete — trittst,  tritt,  this  change  is  general ;  and  it  appears  like- 
wise in  lese — list,  gebe — gibst,  gibt ;  at  least  according  to  the 
usual  pronunciation  in  Lower  Germany.     The  reason  for  the  more 



successful  resistance  opposed  by  these  verbs  than  the  others  to 
the  unification  affecting  the  quantity  must  certainly  be  sought 
in  the  fact  that  the  quality  is  at  the  same  time  different.  This 
assumption  is  confirmed  by  the  fact  that  they  have  not,  in  the 
case  of  the  second  person  plural,  withdrawn  from  the  influence 
of  unification.  The  difference  between  a  and  a  is  not  felt  in  this 
way,  because  the  umlaut  seems  natural  to  our  instinct  of  language. 

324.  In  OHG.  the  participles  of  the  verbs  lesan,  ginesan,  uuesan 
ought,  according  to  Verner's  Law,  to  be  sounded  gileran,  gineran, 
giuueran ;  but,  with  the  exception  of  a  few  traces  in  the  oldest 
records,  the  forms  gilesan,  ginesan,  giuuesan — approaching  the 
present  form — actually  appear.  On  the  other  hand,  the  parti- 
ciples of  kiesen,  friesen,  verliesen  appear  even  in  MHG.,  maintaining 
the  change  gekoren,  gefroren,  verloren.  The  identity  of  the  vowel 
in  the  one  case,  and  the  difference  in  the  last,  account  for  the 
arrangement  of  the   consonants. 

325.  The  strong  verbs  which  have  the  same  vowel  in  the 
singular  and  plural  of  the  preterite,  likewise  cancelled  at  an  early 
period  the  consonantal  difference  which  rose  according  to  Verner's 
Law  ;  cf.  OHG.,  sluog — sluogun,  hieng — hiengun,  huob — huobun,  hluod 
— hluodun  against  zoh — zugun,  meid — miiun.  \Cf.  OE.  slog,  'I 
struck ' — sldgon,  with  teah,  '  I  drew ' — tugon.\  We  can  see  how 
in  this  way  even  such  forms  as  are  not  merely  affected  by  the 
same  phonetic  law,  but  are  connected  by  their  function  and  by 
their  method  of  formation  in  other  respects,  are  differently  treated. 

326.  This  phenomenon  demands  a  psychological  explanation. 
We  should  be  inclined  at  first  sight  to  suppose  that  since  what 
we  call  unification  proceeds  by  analogy  from  a  new  creation, 
the  phonetic  configuration  of  the  form  expelled  by  the  new 
creation  did  not  come  into  consideration  at  all.  If  the  picture 
of  the  traditional  phonetically  differentiated  form  comes  into  con- 

X.]      ON  I  SO  LA  TJON  AND  THE  RE  A  CTION  A  GAINST  IT.       211 

sciousness,  no  new  creation  is  possible ;  if,  however,  it  does  not 
so  come  into  consciousness,  the  new  creation  is  given  free  play. 
But  no  real  reason  appears  why  one  form  should  more  easily 
come  into  consciousness  because,  phonetically  speaking,  it  differs 
more  strongly  than  another  form  from  a  related  one.  The  diffi- 
culty can  only  be  explained  by  the  assumption  of  the  co-operation 
of  simple  reproduction  by  the  aid  of  memory  and  creative  com- 
bination in  the  creation  of  new  forms,  just  as  we  were  compelled 
to  recognise  this  in  the  daily  utterance  of  the  forms  already  usual 
in  language.  There  is  a  state  in  which  the  picture  of  the  tradi- 
tional form  is  not  powerful  enough  to  enter  into  consciousness 
under  any  circumstances  more  easily  than  a  new  creation  due 
to  analogy  ;  but  still  not  so  weak  as  to  retire  without  opposition 
before  such  new  creation.  There  thus  appear  in  opposition  to 
each  other  two  ideas  contending  as  to  whether  of  the  two  shall 
first  enter  into  consciousness,  and  thus  drive  the  other  back.  It 
is  only  where  a  relation  like  this  exists  that  the  degree  of 
divergence  between  the  traditional  form  and  the  eventual  new 
creation  comes  into  consideration.  If  the  latter  is  on  the  point 
of  pressing  first  to  the  front,  the  former  may  yet,  even  without 
being  plainly  apprehended  in  consciousness,  exercise  a  retarding 
influence  upon  it,  which,  in  the  case  of  the  latter,  the  linguistic 
sense  prevents  from  acquiring  the  instinctive  sureness  requisite, 
and  thus  prompts  to  reflexion  upon  it.  The  idea  of  the  tradi- 
tional form,  however,  co-operates  as  a  stronger  retarding  agent, 
the  more  widely  its  contents  differ  from  the  new  combination. 
And  it  is  with  .the  hearer  as  with  the  speaker.  A  new  creation 
operates  the  more  bewilderingly  upon  him,  and  is  the  less  readily 
accepted  and  imitated,  the  more  many-sided  the  opposition  which 
it  presents  to  the  traditional  form,  so  far  as  the  memory  of  it  is 
still  in  some  degree  operative  in  his  mind. 


327.  There  are  two  other  circumstances  which  play  a  much 
more  important  part  in  the  process  of  furthering  or  impeding 
unification  than  phonetic  difference,  namely,  the  greater  or  less 
stability  of  the  connexion  of  the  etymological  groups  and  the 
greater  or  less  intensity  with  which  the  single  forms  are  stamped 
on  the  memory, 
coh^^'^'^'"?  3^^'  '^^^   ^'^^'^   depends  on   the  degree  of  correspondence  in 

theEtyrao-  ^hg  meaning,  and  on  the  degree  of  living  capacity  for  formation 
groups.  in  the  several  forms.  Both  stand,  as  we  have  already  seen,  in 
reciprocal  relations  to  each  other.  The  more  or  less  intimate 
nature  of  the  connexion  may  be  at  once  given  with  the  mere 
function  of  the  forms  ;  as,  for  instance,  the  forms  of  the  present 
are  more  closely  connected  with  each  other  than  with  those 
of  the  preterite,  the  forms  of  the  same  word  more  closely  con- 
nected with  each  other  than  with  the  forms  of  words  derived 
from  the  same  root.  The  tie  between  them  may,  however,  be 
weakened  by  secondary  development  Every  kind  of  isolation 
which  affects  the  function  increases  the  difficulty  of  reaction  against 
the  isolation  by  which  the  sounds  are  affected,  and  renders  it 
actually  impossible  as  soon  as  it  has  reached  a  certain  degree. 

329.  A  few  examples  may  serve  to  illustrate  these  sentences. 
The  numerous  consonantal  differentiations,  which  took  their  rise 
by  the  operation  of  Verner's  Law,  are  completely  obliterated  in 
noun  inflexions,  as  seen  in  the  earliest  records  which  have  come 
down  to  us.  We  see,  however,  their  traces  in  many  double 
forms  which  remain  parallel  to  each  other  without  any  difference 
of  meaning.  In  the  verb,  however,  the  differentiation  has  main- 
tained itself  better,  obviously  aided  by  the  differentiation  of  vowels 
(ablaut)  which  coincides  with  it ;  cf.  MHG.  ziuke—zdch—zugen— 
gezogen.  We  are  able  now  in  several  ways  to  observe  how  the 
process   of  unification  which   sets   in   later  begins  by  cancelling 


the  difference  between  the  singular  and  plural  of  the  preterite, 
and  cancelling  it  so  as  to  differentiate  the  singular  by  this  pro- 
cess for  the  first  time  from  the  present.  This  has  happened  in 
the  case  of  the  West  Teutonic  languages  in  almost  all  those 
cases  in  which  no  variation  of  the  vowels  interposed  to  retard 
the  process  ;  thus  OHG.  s/a^u — s/uog — sluogun,  instead  of  *sluok — 
sluogun,  fdhu—fiang—fiangun,  instead  of  *fiah—fiangun,  etc.  We 
see  an  example  in  which  this  development  is  not  prevented  even 
by  the  difference  of  the  vowel  arrangements  in  the  OS.  fUhan. 
This  ought,  according  to  strict  phonetic  development,  to  form 
the  preterite  fdth—fundun.  We  find,  however,  fand—fundun 
only ;  and  though  it  be  true  that  in  the  present  we  find  the 
form  findan,  yet  this  is  only  by  the  side  of  ftthan.  The  few 
NHG.  traces  of  this  old  change  all  display  a  departure  from  the 
older  circumstances  still  existent  in  MHG.,  where  the  singular  of 
the  preterite  is  assimilated  to  the  plural :  ziehe — zog  (OHG.  zdh) — 
zogen,leide — litt  (OHG.  kid) — litten,  schneide — schnitt  (OHG.  sneid) — 
scknitten,  siede — sott  (OHG.  sdd) — sotten,  erkiese — erkor  (OHG.  irkos) 
— erkoren.  In  the  same  way  the  ablaut  has  certainly  maintained 
itself  in  NHG.,  but  a  correspondence  has  been  re-established 
between  the  singular  and  plural  of  the  preterite. 

330.  We  are  often  able  to  observe  that  phonetic  differentiations 
which  are  disregarded,  either  completely,  or  with  the  exception  of 
scanty  traces,  maintain  their  place  between  words  etymologically 
connected,  or  are  only  cancelled  when  their  relationship  to  each 
other  is  very  close.  In  the  Teutonic  languages  a  change  dating 
from  the  oldest  times  has  been  in  operation  between  the  sound  of 
NHG.  h  and  NHG.  ch, — the  sound  of  h  appearing  at  the  beginning 
of  a  syllable,  that  of  ch  at  the  end  of  a  syllable  and  before  con- 
sonants :  cf.  MHG  r&ch,  '  raw,'  gen.  rAhes,  ich  sihe—er  siht  (pro- 
nounced like  the  NHG.  sickt)—er  sack — wir  sdhen.     In  the  case  of 


the  written  language  of  to-day,  this  change  in  the  inflexion  is 
disregarded,  except  in  the  case  of  hoch;  while,  besides  this,  the 
comparative  and  superlative  have  been  approximated  to  the  posi- 
tive, except  in  the  case  of  hoher — kockste,3ind  ndher — ndchste.  In 
other  cases,  however,  it  is  maintained  :  cf.  sehen — gesicht,  geschehen 
— geschichte,  fliehen — -flucht,  ziehen — zucht,  schmach — schmdhen.  An 
interchange  prevailing  in  many  instances  in  the  case  of  the  vowels, 
appeared  in  the  OG.  dialects  under  the  influence  of  the  vowel  of  the 
following  syllable,  viz.,  between  e  and  i  and  between  u  and  o.  This 
interchange  has  been  almost  disregarded  in  the  noun-inflexion 
before  the  commencement  of  our  tradition.  In  MHG.  it  is  consis- 
tently maintained  within  groups  etymologically  connected,  except- 
ing in  cases  of  feminine  formations  of  nouns  of  the  agent ;  cf  got 
— gotinne  (OHG.  gutinna),  but  cf  also  the  present  use  of  birin  by  the 
side  of  berinne,  and  wolf  by  the  side  of  wiclpinne  and  the  diminu- 
tives (cf.  vogel — vogelin  [OUG.  fugi/^]).  In  NHG.  the  unification  only 
appears  in  the  case  of  close  relationship.  Thus  it  appears  regularly 
in  the  case  of  names  of  materials  (cf.  leder — ledern,  MHG.  liderin ; 
gold — golden  [MHG.  guldtn\  ;  holz — holzern  [Itulztn]  ;  besides  e.g.,  in 
wort — antwort,  antworten  [mhg.  antwurte,  antwiirten] ;  gold,  ver- 
golden,(sti\l  in  the  old-fashioned  style  vergulden).  On  the  other 
hand,  we  find  at  the  present  day  recht — richten,  richtig,  gericht ; 
berg—gebirge;  feld—gefilde;  herde—hirt ;  hold—kuld;  v oil— fal- 
len ;  koch — kuche,  etc. 

331.  As  a  matter  of  course,  no  unification  sets  in  where  the 
feeling  for  the  etymolog!cal  connexion  has  completely  disappeared 
owing  to  a  divergence  in  the  development  of  meaning,  or  even 
where  it  is  so  far  faded  that  it  does  not  come  into  con- 
sciousness without  some  reflexion.  This  explains,  for  instance, 
why  the  differences  in  sound  just  described  are  maintained  in 
the  following  cases  :  rauh — rauchzverk,  rauchwaare,  rauchhandel ; 

X.]       ON  IS  OLA  TION  AND  THE  RE  A  CTION  A  GAINST  IT.       215 

nach  (mhg.  tidcli) — nahe  ;  erde — irden,  irdisch;  gold— gulden  (an 
adjective  used  substantively).  In  mhg.  the  contracted  forms  du 
treist,  er  treit  from  tragen  actually  exist ;  these  are  in  NHG.,  again, 
replaced  by  trdgst,  trdgt ;  but  the  contraction  is  maintained  in  the 
derivation  getreide.  Mhg.  gar  shows  in  its  inflected  form  a  w 
(garwe,  etc.),  which  ought,  according  to  the  laws  of  sound-change, 
to  develop  into  b ;  but  an  inflexion,  gar — garber,  could  not  be 
maintained  indefinitely,  and  the  inflected  followed  the  example 
of  the  uninflected  forms  :  on  the  other  hand,  the  b  of  the  verb 
gerben  remained,  owing  to  the  different  development  of  mean- 
ing. Every  language,  in  every  possible  stage  of  development, 
affords  a  plentiful  supply  of  proof  of  this  phenomenon. 

332.  The  intensity  of  the  impression  received  by  the  memory 
determines,  in  the  first  instance,  the  relative  strength  of  the  factors 
opposed  to  each  other,  in  which  respect  the  remarks  made  above 
(p.  206)  equally  apply.  If,  e.g.,  in  ON.  the  first  person  singular  of 
the  conjunctive  mood  ends,  in  both  present  and  preterite,  in  a  {gefa, 
gcefd),  while  in  all  other  forms  an  i  appears  {gefir,  gefi,  gefim,  gefi6, 
gefi  and  g(^fir,  gczfi,  etc.)  the  chances  are,  of  course,  highly  un- 
favourable to  the  former,  and  thus  gefi  and  gcefi  appear  in  the  more 
recent  sources  likewise.  But,  of  course,  under  certain  circumstances, 
one  isolated  form  may  carry  the  day  against  several  correspond- 
ing forms — that  is,  if  it  is  more  frequently  used  in  itself  than 
the  others  taken  together.  If,  for  instance,  in  NHG.  zieinen  the  i 
runs  generally  through  the  present,  from  which  then,  instead  of  the 
old  strong  preterite,  a  further  new  weak  preterite  is  formed,  while 
in  MHG.  most  forms  still  maintain  e,  this  depends  on  the  fact  that 
the  third  person  singular  es  ziemt  occurred,  then,  as  now,  more 
frequently  than  all  the  others. 

333.  But  most  of  the  irregularities  in  the  treatment  of  etymo- 
logical  groups,  which  otherwise  stand  perfectly  parallel   to  each 


other,  proceed  from  the  fact  that  the  individual  groups  differ  very 
markedly  from  each  other  with  respect  to  the  frequency  of  their 
occurrence,  and  thus  with  respect  to  the  facility  with  which  the 
individual  forms  can  be  reproduced  by  an  effort  of  memory 
with  their  traditional  differences.  The  rarest  words  are  those 
which,  assuming  circumstances  in  other  respects  to  be  similar, 
are  earliest  exposed  to  unification  ;  the  most  commonly  occurring 
are  the  latest  to  be  so  exposed,  or  indeed  not  exposed  at  all. 
This  assertion  can  be  proved  inductively  as  well  as  deductively. 

334.  But  besides  this,  the  course  of  the  movement  is  influenced 
by  many  accidental  processes  in  the  mental  activity  of  the  single 
individuals  and  their  reciprocal  effect — processes  which  lie  beyond 
the  sphere  of  our  reasoning,  as  of  our  observation.  Especially 
do  factors  withheld  from  our  knowledge  play  a  great  part  in 
the  contest  which  the  double  forms,  which  have  taken  their  rise 
owing  to  unification,  have  to  go  through  with  respect  to  each 
other.  Omniscience  alone  could  explain  in  every  case  why 
the  result  has  been  in  certain  cases  thus,  and  in  other  cases 
otherwise.  And  we  cannot  close  our  eyes  to  the  fact  that 
very  frequently  analogous  cases  result  differently  in  the  same 
dialect,  and  one  and  the  same  case  have  different  issues  in  different 
dialects.  Thus,  to  cite  only  a  quite  certain  example :  while  the 
Gothic  has  in  other  cases  unified  the  so-called  grammatical 
change,  by  generalising  the  use  of  the  consonant  of  the  present 
and  of  the  singular  preterite,  the  verbs  hvairban,  svairban,  skaidan 
have  taken  the  opposite  course,  and  have  generalised  the  use 
of  the  consonant  of  the  plural  preterite  and  of  the  participle ;  and 
especially  in  the  case  of  the  last-mentioned  verb  in  HG.,  which 
carries  the  consonant  of  the  plural  preterite  through  more  com- 
monly than  the  Gothic,  the  consonant  of  the  present  has  succeeded 
in  carrying  the  day. 

X.]     ON  IS  OLA  TION  AND  THE  REACTION  A  GAINST  IT.       217 

335-  Of    course,    however,    the    development    in    the    indivi- influence  of 

the  fonnal 

dual  material  groups  is  not  wholly  independent  of  the  formal  grouping. 
grouping.  When  a  phonetic  differentiation  affects  all  the 
etymological  parallel  groups  belonging  to  a  former  group,  a 
co-operation  of  the  material  and  the  formal  grouping  is  thereby 
caused.  This  co-operation  sometimes  serves  to  decide  the  direction 
of  the  unification.  In  the  original  Teutonic  there  occurred  in 
the  numerous  noun-formations  with  the  suffix  -no,  a  change  of 
tlie  vowel  preceding  the  n  between  u  (afterwards  further  de- 
veloped into  o-d)  and  e  (i),  so  that  both  distributed  themselves 
among  the  different  cases  according  to  a  regular  rule.^  Next, 
at  a  later  period,  we  find  u  (a)  and  e  (?)  regularly  carried 
through  all  the  cases  of  a  word.  Thus  in  the  Gothic  we  find 
forms  like  yiudans,  'king,'  standing  beside  forms  like  maurgins, 
'  morning  ;'  and  in  ON.  forms  like  Jqrmunn  beside  forms  like 
O^inn,  and  morgunn  and  tnorginn  standing  together.  But  the 
participles  falling  under  this  head  have,  in  contrast  with  the 
lawless  caprice  evidenced  in  the  other  forms,  invariably  -an  in 
Gothic,  and  invariably  -in  in  ON.  The  decisive  part  played  by 
the  formal  grouping  is  especially  seen  from  the  fact  that  such 
participles  as  have  been  completely  transformed  into  adjectives 
or  substantives,  have  in  some  cases  struck  out  a  new  path ;  cf. 
Gothic,/u/gins, '  hidden,'  as  against  fulhans,  the  genuine  participle 
of  filhan,  '  to  hide  ; '  aigm,  '  property '  {eigenthuni),  the  participle  of 
aigan,  '  to  have,'  used  substantivally  ;  further,  the  ON.jgiunn, '  giant,' 
the  old  participle  of  eia,  '  to  eat,'  with  an  active  signification. 

336.  The  formal  grouping  may,  however,  not  merely  determine 
the  direction  of  the  unification,  but  also  whether  it  shall  occur  at  all. 
The  less  phonetic  differentiation  disturbs  the  formal  parallelism  of 
the  single  groups  among  themselves,  the  more  capable  are  they  of 

^  Cf.  Beitrdge,  vi.  238  sqq. 

2i8         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

withstanding  the  tendencies  towards  unification.  Thus,  for  instance, 
the  maintenance  of  the  ablaut  series  in  Teutonic  for  so  long  a 
period  would  have  been  impossible  if  each  verb  had  had  its  own 
special  kind  of  ablaut,  and  had  there  not  existed  larger  groups 
of  verbs  with  the  same  scheme.  And  it  can  be  demonstrated 
that  the  schemes  preserved  to  us  represent  merely  a  selection 
from  those  which  were  in  existence  before  the  commencement  of 
our  tradition,  all  those  which  were  represented  either  by  a  few  or 
by  only  a  single  example  having  perished,  save  for  a  few  traces. 
The  disappearance  of  others  may  be  traced  historically  ;  e.g.  Gothic 
truda  —  trad —  tridunt  —  trudans.  It  is  the  same  with  the  umlaut 
in  the  second  and  third  persons  of  the  singular  indicative  present 
of  the  strong  verbs  ;  OHG.  faru  — ferist  — ferit,  and  thus  in  NHG. 
fahre  — fdhrst  — fdhrt. 
Conversion  33/.  Another  circumstance  which  contributes  to  the  preserva- 

of  a  merely  '.  .,.^.  .,  i-t  ••i-i 

formal  dif-   1  tion  of  a  phonetic  difference  is  when  this  happens  to  coincide  with  a 
a  difference    difference  of  function.     If,  for  instance,  all  the  cases  of  the  singular 

of  meaning.  ,  i        .  t        1 1     i  '  r^  ^  \         \ 

are  arranged  so  as  to  correspond  with  all  the  cases  of  the  plural, 
the  relation  they  bear  to  each  other  is  more  easily  and  more 
indelibly  stamped  on  the  memory  than  if  certain  forms  of  the 
singular,  coupled  with  certain  forms  of  the  plural  are  arranged  so 
as  to  correspond  with  certain  other  forms  of  the  singular  and  plural. 
And  thus  it  is  also  natural  that  where,  in  the  majority  of  cases,  the 
phonetic  differentiation  corresponds  with  the  difference  of  function, 
the  unification  should  be  confined  to  the  groups  which  are  more 
immediately  connected,  and  this  unification  thus  perfects  the 
correspondence  between  phonetic  and  functional  difference.  In 
Old  Danish  the  plural  of  3«r«, '  bairn,'  in  accordance  with  a  general 
Scandinavian  sound-law,  is  bfrn,  barna,  b^mum,  b^rn ;  while  in 
the  singular,  a  prevails  throughout.  Modern  Danish  has  admitted 
birna  also  instead  of  barna.     In  another  word,  lagh,  '  law,'  o  is 

X.]      ON  ISOLA  riON  AND  THE  REACTION  AGAINST  IT.       219 

carried  even  in  Old  Danish  throughout  the  whole  plural.  The 
unification  within  the  narrower  groups  is  frequently  enough  the 
preliminary  to  wider  unification.  Thus,  in  the  case  of  lagh,  the  o  is 
actually  making  "its  appearance  sometimes  in  Old  Danish,  and  in 
Modern  Danish  lov  is  the  prevailing  form.  The  coincidence  with 
a  functional  difference  may,  however,  be  the  reason  for  the  lasting 
retention  of  a  phonetic  difference,  and  especially  when  it  is  ren- 
dered capable  by  formal  analogy  of  resistance  in  the  way  already 

338.  The 'coincidence  of  these  two  circumstances  enables  the 
idea  of  the  phonetic  variation  to  connect  itself  so  closely  with  the 
functional  variation  that  the  two  may  appear  inseparable  to  the 
instinct  of  language.  Thus  it  is  that  the  non-significant  variation 
originated  by  accident  became  significant.  It  will  become  more 
significant  still,  the  less  plainly  that  variation  in  meaning  is 
accentuated  by  other  phonetic  variations.  Language  thus  claims 
compensation  for  the  loss  of  the  characteristic  signs  of  the 
functional  variation  which  set  in  as  a  consequence  of  .phonetic  loss. 

339.  The  ablaut  in  the  German  verb  depends  upon  a  vowel 
differentiation  already  manifest  in  the  IE.  original  language.  This 
is  a  mechanical  result  of  the  shifting  accent,  and  has  nothing  to  Ao\ 
with  the  original  difference  in  the  function  of  the  single  forms. 
This  differentiation  was  even  for  the  original  language  superfluous, 
except  as  regards  the  distinction  between  the  present  and  imper- 
fect on  the  one  hand,  and  the  aorist  upon  the  other  {cf.  GK.  Xei-rrm, 
eXeiirov,  Xeiiroifu  —  eXiirov,  Xivoifii).  The  perfect  stem,  in  parti- 
cular, was  clearly  differentiated  from  the  present  stem  by  re- 
duplication. Hence  we  see,  even  in  Greek,  distinct  signs  of  decay 
in  the  vowel-change  between  present  and  perfect ;  we  have,  on 
the  one  hand,  XetVo)  —  \e\onra,  but  •n-Xe'/cw  —  treirXexa  and  no 
*  -TreirXoxa-     And  only  a  few  traces  remain  of  the  original  change 


between  the  singular  and  the  plural  of  the  perfect  {olha  — 
icrfxev).  The  ablaut  disappears,  in  fact,  simply  because  it  is 
superfluous ;  and  it  was  superfluous  because  the  old  characteristic 
sign  of  the  perfect  stem,  the  reduplication,  survived,  and  was  con- 
sistently maintained,  while  the  present  stem  was  also,  in  many 
respects,  specially  characterised.  In  Teutonic,  on  the  other  hand, 
the  loss  of  the  reduplication  went  hand  in  hand  with  the  confir- 
mation of  the  ablaut.  We  cannot  indeed  assert  that  one  was  the 
cause  of  the  other.  Rather,  the  primary  impulse  to  the  loss  of  the 
reduplication  was  given  by  the  phonetic  development,  in  conse- 
quence of  which  certain  forms  were  no  longer  recognisable  as  re- 
duplicated {cf.  the  type  biruni)  ;  and  the  preservation  of  the  ablaut 
is  due,  in  the  first  instance,  to  the  existence  of  parallel  series.  But 
in  the  further  course  of  development,  a  reciprocal  causal  relation 
has  become  manifest.  For  instance,  it  is  instructive  for  our  purpose 
that,  in  Gothic,  those  verbs  ,have  chiefly  maintained  the  reduplica- 
tion in  which  the  IE.  vowel  variation  between  present  and  perfect 
(preterite)  has  disappeared  on  phonetic  grounds ;  and  this  holds 
good  of  every  case  ;  cf.,  halda  —  kaihald,  skaida  —  skaiskaid,  stauta 
—  staitaut.  Still,  even  in  OHG.,  there  was  as  yet  no  absolute 
necessity  of  differentiating  the  root  syllable  of  the  present  and 
preterite,  because  the  variation  was  marked  in  the  termination  as 
well  in  the  case  of  each  single  person  of  the  indicative  as  of  the 
conjunctive.  The  case  is  different  in  MHG.,  where  in  the  first  and 
second  persons  plural  of  the  indicative,  and  throughout  the  whole  of 
the  conjunctive,  the  variation  between  the  present  and  the  preterite 
depends  entirely  upon  the  form  taken  by  the  root-syllable,  cf.geben 
=  gdben,  gebet  =  gdbet,  gebe  =  gabe,  etc.  In  NHG.  the  second 
person  singular  and  the  third  person  plural  of  the  indicative  must 
be  added  to  the  list.  Thus  the  ablaut  has  become  a  character- 
istic, whose  necessity  has  been  increasingly  felt.     But  it  is  only 


the  distinction  between  the  present  and  the  preterite  that  is  of  im- 
portance, and  not  that  between  the  singular  indicative  preterite,  or 
merely  the  first  and  third  persons  of  it,  and  the  other  forms  of  the 
preterite.  The  last-mentioned  distinction,  passing  as  it  did  like- 
wise from  the  original  language,  was  maintained  solely  owing 
to  the  frequency  of  the  occurrence  of  certain  verbs,  and  the  exist- 
ence of  parallel  series.  It  was  thus,  in  the  case  of  certain 
classes,  cast  aside  at  an  early  date  (Gothic /(^r — fdrum,  faifdii — 
faifdhum,  OU.O.  fiang — fiangum)  [AS.  scoc — scocon,  &\.c.\.  In  the 
case  of  other  classes  it  has  maintained  its  ground  even  into  NHG., 
but  has  finally  been  cast  aside  entirely  except  in  a  few  instances.  It 
is  merely  in  respect  of  phonetic  convenience  a  gain  to  say,  as  we 
do  now,  sprang — sprangen,  flog — fiogen,  and  not  as  in  OHG., 
spranc  —  sprujigen,  floug — fliigen.  Thus  the  ablaut  received  no 
functional  value  till  the  NHG.  period.  And  in  this  connexion 
there  is  one  noteworthy  circumstance.  The  variation  between 
the  singular  and  plural  is  (except  in  the  past-present  verbs)  re- 
tained by  the  modern  written  language  solely  in  the  common  verb 
werden  [ward — wurdon],  and  in  this  case  also  by-forms  prepon- 
derate, in  which  the  variation  is  lost ;  on  the  other  hand,  there  is 
still  a  number  of  verbs  in  which,  though  the  vowel  of  the  singular 
has  penetrated  into  their  plural,  yet  the  conjunctive  has  main- 
tained its  peculiar  vowel  arrangement :  siarl>  —  stilrbe,  schwamm  — 
schwomme  (with  a  by-form  schwdmme),  etc.  In  this  case  a  phonetic 
contrast  is  maintained  within  nrirrower  limits,  but  again  in  virtue 
of  its  coincidence  with  a  functional  one.  Since,  however,  the 
umlaut  alone  would  suffice  to  express  the  latter  {schwammen  — 
sckwdmmen),  it  would  be  superfluous  to  maintain  the  old  vowel. 
But  precisely  in  the  case  of  those  verbs  in  which  the  umlaut  is 
maintained  most  strictly  {verdilrbe,  stiirbe,  wiirbe,  wurfe,  hiilfe) 
another  consideration  comes  in,  namely,  the  need  for  distinction 


from  the  conjunctive  present :  helfe  and  hdlfe,  which  form  occurs 
as  a  variant  of  hulfe,  are  no  doubt  differently  written,  but  phone- 
tically they  correspond  with  each  other.  On  the  other  hand,  there 
is  no  verb  with  i  going  through  all  the  persons  of  its  present 
tense  which  still  forms  a  subjunctive  preterite  with  ii  {e.g.,  singe  ■ — 
siinge),  because  in  this  case  it  is  precisely  the  old  form,  which, 
according  to  the  pronunciation  prevalent  in  most  German  dialects, 
would  fall  into  correspondence  with  the  conjunctive  present.  And 
this  explains  the  fact  why  the  verbs  with  ■mm  and  nn  show  double 
forms  still  (schwdmine  —  sckwomme,  sdnne  —  sbnne  ;  cf.  gesckwom- 
men,  gesonnen  as  contrasted  with  gestmgen). 

340.  A  part  similar  to  that  played  by  the  ablaut  is  that  played 
by  the  umlaut  produced  by  an  i  or  /  of  the  following  syllable. 
In  the  masculine  z-declension  in  OHG.  it  had  happened  to  become 
the  rule  that  the  whole  singular  was  free  from,  and  the  whole 
plural  affected  by,  its  umlaut  {gast—gesti,  etc.),  and  it  is  hence 
that  the  difference  is  maintained.  The  circumstance  is  best  ex- 
plained if  we  compare  the  history  of  the  change  between  e  and 
i,  u  and  o,  caused  by  the  following  vowel.  The  z^-declension 
must  in  original  German  have  run  much  as  follows  : — ^ 

























So  purposeless  a  change  was  not  likely  to  be  long  maintained. 
And  thus  we  find  traces  of  it  in  Old  Norse  alone.  OHG.  has 
from  the  very  earliest  times  made  the  u  of  sunu  uniform  through- 

'  The  terminations  are  comparatively  unimportant  for  our  purpose. 


out;  in  metu,  eku,  eru,  the  e;  and  in  situ,  quirn,  the  i)-  The 
umlaut  in  the  z-declehsion  has  not  yet  come  to  be  a  necessity 
in  OHG.,  as  the  cases  of  the  plural  are  independently  of  its  aid 
clearly  differentiated  from  those  of  the  singular ;  indeed  it  is  not 
a  necessity  in  MHG.  either  as  long  as  the  e  of  the  flexional 
terminations  is  retained ;  for  the  nominative,  accusative,  and 
genitive  plural  geste  could  not  easily  be  confused  with  the  dative 
singular  gaste,  even  should  they  dispense  with  the  aid  of  the 
umlaut.  But  directly  the  e  disappears — and  this  is  the  case 
notably  in  the  South  German  dialects — the  umlaut  remains  in  the 
nominative  and  accusative  as  the  only  mark  of  distinction  be- 
tween the  singular  and  the  plural.  At  this  stage  of  development 
the  «-declension  has  a  decided  advantage  over  the  a-declension, 
and  the  purely  dynamical  value  of  the  umlaut  is  complete. 
This  is  very  clearly  manifest  in  the  fact  that  it  spreads  beyond 
its  original  domain.  This  disposition  to  spread  stands  in  the 
closest  connexion  with  the  absence  or  presence  of  a  differen- 
tiating e.  In  the  same  way  in  South  German  the  umlaut  has 
affected  almost  all  the  substantives  of  the  old  a-declension  capable 
of  being  affected  by  it  {cf.  Schmeller,  Mundarten  Baierns,  §  796, 
and  WiNTELER,  Kerenzer  mundart,  p.  170  sqq?).  Thus  they  say 
tag — tag,  arm — arm,  etc.  The  Middle  and  Low  German  dialects 
have  this  tendency  in  a  much  less  degree,  and  notably  only  in 
the  case  of  words  of  more  than  one  syllable,  such  as  sattel,  wagen, 
in  which  they  too  reject  the  e  of  the  plural.  At  an  early  period 
the  umlaut  succeeded  in  affecting  words  expressive  of  relationship, 
which  originally  belonged  to  the  consonantal  declension,  and  thus 
could  dispense  with  a  termination  in  the  nominative  and  accusative 
plural ;  MHG.  vater — veter,  muoter — mueUr,  etc. 

1  CfBeitragf,  z.  g.  d.  d.  spr.  vi.  80.  The  possible  alternative  remains  of  a  unifica- 
tion in  different  directions,  assuming  that  for  OHG.  a  phonetic  transition  of  ?  into  i  before 
ti  is  to  be  supposed. 


341.  The  formal  unification,  which  we  have  already  had  oc- 
casion to  call  repeatedly  into  consideration,  is  also  often  a  reaction 
against  an  objectless  phonetic  differentiation.  The  process  is  then 
the  following.  Within  a  class  which  hitherto  adopted  similar  for- 
mations, phonetic  differences  arose  in  one  form  or  in  several.  For 
instance,  the  genitive  in  certain  words  was  formed  in  one  way, 
and  in  others  differently,  while  in  other  cases  the  uniformity  was 
not  disturbed.  Then  the  tendency  makes  itself  felt  of  restoring  the 
same  uniformity  in  the  one  or  the  few  differentiated  forms  as  well, 
and  of  changing  the  partial  agreement  of  the  method  of  formation 
again  into  a  complete  agreement.  This  method  of  unification  is 
specially  seen  in  connexion  with  the  material  method,  as  the 
instances  cited  may  serve  to  show.     But  even   independently  of 


this  it  occurs  frequently  enough.  Under  this  head  falls,  for 
instance,  the  unification  of  the  hard  and  soft  fricative  in  the  ter- 
minations of  the  cases  and  persons  of  the  Old  Teutonic  dialects.^ 
According  to  Verner's  Law  p  =  IE.  /  was  divided  into  f  and  tS  (d),  s 
into  J  (hard)  and  z  (soft).  Accordingly  in  the  original  German  we 
had  *  tvdesi  (du  trittst, '  thou  treadest '),  *txde\i  {er  tritt),  *  txde\e  (ihr 
tretei)  *  trdonyi  {sie  treten),  as  against  *  b^rezi, '  thou  bearest,'  *dere^z\ 
*  bh'^e,  *berondi,  while  in  the  first  persons  singular  and  plural  no 
differentiation  had  yet  appeared  ;  further,  in  the  o-declension,  the 
nominative  singular  was  *  stigSs  isteg),  but  *  ehwoz  ('  horse ')  ;  the 
nominative  i^Xwxal  *  stigds,  but  ^hwoz ;  accusative-plural  *  stigSns 
but  ^hwonz*vjh.].\e.  the  other  case-endings  remained  the  same  ;  and 
similarly  in  other  classes  of  inflexion.  The  unification  which 
ensued  terminated  in  nearly  every  case  in  favour  of  the  soft 
sound  ;  on  which  we  have  to  remark  that  z  appears  as  r  in  the  ON. 
and  in  the  West  Teutonic  .dialects,  but  disappears  from  the  latter 
in  the  case  of  original  auslaut.     Still,  in  certain  cases,  too,  the  hard 

^  Cf.  Beitrdge,  vi.  548  sqq. 


s  has  carried  the  day.  Thus,  in  the  nominative  plural  of  the  a- 
declension,  we  find  in  AS.  and  Old  Friesic  dagas  by  the  side  of  ON. 
dagar ;  in  OS.  the  Heliand  exhibits  -os,  only  in  solitary  cases  0  or 
a  {grurio,  slutild) ;  while  in  the  Freckenhorst  Roll  a  appears  more 
frequently  than  os  and  as.  OHG.  recognises  in  appellatives  a  only ; 
on  the  other  hand,  in  genealogical  designations  which  have  passed 
into  names  of  towns,  it  displays  -as  as  well,  supposing  that  these 
are  not  to  be  taken  in  any  other  way.i 

342.  An  example,  taken  from  modern  times,  is  the  restoration 
of  the  inflexion  e  in  NHG.  in  cases  where  it  had  already  disappeared 
in  MHG.  The  derivatives  terminating  in  -en,  -er,  -el  are  par- 
ticularly instructive.  In  the  case  of  substantives  the  MHG.  rejec- 
tion of  the  e  is  maintained  ;  cf.,  des  inorgens,  dem  wagen,  die  wagen, 
der  wagen,  den  wagen,  as  against  tages,  tage,  tagen,  and  in  the  same 
way  schiissel,  schiisseln,  as  against  schule,  schulen.  On  the  other 
hand,  in  the  case  of  adjectives  which  are  connected  more  firmly, 
owing  to  the  prevailing  uniformity  which  characterises  them,  the  e 
has  been  restored  after  the  analogy  of  the  monosyllabic  words : 
gefangenes  like  langes,  gefangene,  gefangenen  (MHG.  gevangen), 
andere,  anderes,  andere  (  =  MHG.  ander,  anders,  ander).  The  NHG. 
forms  occur  even  in  MHG.  by  the  side  of  the  syncopated  forms. 
We  are  able  in  this'  case  to  make  observations  again  on  the  pro- 
cess of  isolation.  We  write  invariably  die  and  den  eltern,  beside 
die,  den  dlteren ;  der  jiinger,  den  jUngern  (substantive),  beside 
der  JUngere,  den  jUngeren  {z.d]ect{v€) ;  einzeln,  dative  plural  of  the 
MHG.  adjective  einzel ;  anderseits,  unserseits,  as  against  andere  seite, 
unsere  seite;  vorderseite,  hinterseite,  oberarm,  unterarm,  edelmann, 
innerhalb\  ausserhalb,  oberhalb,  unterhalb  (all  spurious  composites 
sprung  from  the  union  of  the  adjective  and  substantive),  as  against 
die  vordere  seite,  etc. ;  anders,  as  against  anderes. 

1  CyiCogel,  Zeitschrift  fiir  deutsches  aliertum,  xxviii.  p.  \10  sqq. 



343.  Another  case  in  which  the  umlaut  has  become  dynamic 
from  analogous  reasons  is  the  subjunctive  mood  of  strong  pre- 
terites, and  of  the  weak  ones  formed  with  no  intervening  vowel, 
MHG.  fuor—fuere,  sang,  pi.  sungen — sungen,  mohte — mohte,  brahte — 
hrahte,  etc.  In  this  case  the  umlaut  is  either  uniformly  prevalent, 
or,  at  least  for  the  plural,  is  the  only  method  of  distinction. 
The  dynamic  acceptation  of  umlaut  by  the  linguistic  instinct 
announces  itself  in  NHG.  by  the  fact  that,  in  spite  of  all  other 
unification  of  the  vowel-system,  the  umlaut  still  remains,  as  sang, 
sangen — sange,  for  sungen,  silnge ;  and  further,  even  more  decidedly 
in  MHG.,  in  the  transference  of  the  umlaut  from  the  preterites 
which  had  originally  no  vowels  to  the  syncopated  preterites  {brante 
— brente,  instead  of  brante  after  the  analogy  of  brdhte — brcehte)}- 
Conversion  344-  A  third  case  is  the  umlaut  in  the  present  as  contrasted  with 

of  elements  .^,  ,.,  .  ,,  •    •    t 

of  the  stem  the  suppression  of  the  umlaut  m  the  preterite  and  the  participle: 
flexions.  OHG.  brennu — branta—gibranter.  In  the  participle  a  change  has 
developed  phonetically:  gibrennit — gibrant-.  The  first  result, 
however,  of  unification  under  these  circumstances  is  that  the  unin- 
flected  form  gibrennit  is  rejected  in  favour  of  gibrant.  But  then 
the  contrast  is  maintained  in  the  root  .syllable  between  the  present 
and  preterite  participle  for  centuries  unintermittently,  although  it 
is  not  necessary  to  the  characterisation  of  the  forms. 

345.  In  this  way  it  is  possible  for  even  elements  of  the  stem  of 
the  word  to  be  changed  into  flexional  terminations.  This  is  the 
case  in  the  German  weak  declension.  In  this  the  n  (as  in  words 
like  namen,  frauen,  herzen)  belongs  to  the  original  stem.  As,  how- 
ever, every  trace  of  the  original  flexional  termination  has  been 
wiped  out  by  phonetic  decay,  and  as,  on  the  other  side,  the  n  in 
the  nominative  (in  the  case  of  the  neuter,  in  the  accusative  as  well) 
singular  has  disappeared,  as  in  the  case  of  name,  frau,  berz,  it  has 

^  Cf,  Bech,  Germania,  xv.  p.  129  sgg. 


come  to  be  a  characteristic  of  the  oblique  cases  in  contrast  with 
the  nominative  singular.  Another  case-suffix,  which  took  its  rise 
in  a  similar  manner,  is  the  syllable  -er,  which  serves  to  form 
plurals  {rad^-rdder,  mann — manner).  The  method  of  formation 
took  its  origin  in  certain  neuter  j-stems  (cf.  Latin  genus — generis), 
in  which  s  had,  obeying  the  law  of  sound-change,  turned  into  r. 
In  the  nominative  singular  this  same  s  had  naturally,  according  to 
the  same  laws,  to  disappear  together  with  the  preceding  vowel. 
Thus,  under  the  partial  influence  of  the  vowel-declension,  there 
arose  in  the  first  place  in  OHG.  the  following  scheme : — 



N.  kalp 


G.  kalbir-es 


D.  kalbir-e 


A.  kalp 


In  the  genitive  and  dative  singular,  at  least,  the  -ir-  was  useless 
and  puzzling.  And  thus  the  forms  in  question  have  already  dis- 
appeared at  the  time  from  which  our  oldest  sources  date,  leaving  but 
isolated  traces,  and  are  replaced  by  kalbes,  kalbe,  which  are  formed 
after  the  model  of  the  normal  inflexion  from  the  nominative 
accusative.  Then  the  -ir  necessarily  appeared  as  the  characteristic 
of  the  plural,  and  the  more  so  since  there  was  in  the  nominative 
and  accusative  no  other  differentiating  symbol.  The  functional 
character  then  of  the  -ir  (=,MHG.,  NHG.  -er)  is  attested  by  the  fact 
that  it  is  gradually  transferred  to  a  quantity  of  words  with  which 
it  had  originally  no  connexion. 

■\a6.  These  examples  will  suffice  to  make  it  plain  how  a  varia-/Aii phonetic 

'^*  ■*■  ,'  changes  in- 

tion  which  sprang  up  without  any  idea  of  purpose,  if  favoured  by  voluntary. 
the  casual  coincidence  of  different  circumstances,  may  unperceived, 
and  unintentionally,  be  made  to  subserve  a  purpose,  causing  it 


to  appear  as  though  the  variation  were  designedly  made  to  suit 
this  very  purpose.  This  appearance  grows  actually  stronger  the 
more  perfectly  the  differences  which  arose  at  the  same  time  un- 
intentionally are  abolished.  We  may  generalise  our  experience 
drawn  from  historical  development  as  far  as  we  can  trace  it,  in 
the  proposition  that  there  is  no  such  thing  as  variation  of  sound 
created  of  set  purpose  with  a  view  to  denote  a  difference  of 
function.  The  difference  of  function  only  attaches  itself  to  the 
variation  of  sound  by  secondary  development,  and  this  through  a 
development  which  the  individual  speaker  neither  designs  nor  per- 
ceives by  means  of  a  natural  association  of  ideas. 



IF  sound-change  has,  generally  speaking,  the  effect  of  producing  Obliteration 
differences  where  none  existed  previously,  it  serves,  on  thetionsbT 
other  hand,  not  unusually  to  obliterate  existing  differences.     This  change, 
is  under  certain  circumstances  a  salutary  arrangement ;  but  in  most 
cases  it  does  more  harm  than  good.     For  by  this  process  differences 
essential   to  the   denotation  of  the  function   disappear ;  and   in 
addition,  the  clear  division  of  the  single  groups  from  each  other  is 
rendered  an  impossibility.     Hence  the  effect  of  sound-change  is 
commonly  to  produce  further  results,  and  is  especially  operative 
in  producing  many  analogical  new-creations. 

348.  The  simplest  process  under  this  head  is,  when  words  ety- 
mologically  unconnected,  and  equally  unconnected  in  signification,  ' 
come  to  coincide  phonetically  owing  to  secondary  development ; 
e.g.,  enkel  (ta/us)  =  MHG.  —  enkel — enkel  (nepos)  =  MKG.  enenkel, 
garbe  {manipulus)  =  MHG.  garbe  —  garbe  (schafgarbe)  =  MHG. 
garwe,  kiel  (carina)  =  M}iG.  kiel — kiel  {caulis  pennae)  =  yiYiG.  kil, 
mdhre  {narratio)  =  MHG.  mcsre  —  mdhre  {equd)  —  MHG.  merhe,  tor 
(porta)  =  MUG.  tor — tor  (stuUus)  =  MHG.  t6re,  los  (solutus)  =  MBG. 
Ids  —  los  (sors)  =  MHG.  I6z,  ohm  (amphora)  =  MHG.  dme  —  ohm 
(avunculus)  =  oheim,  schnur  (lined)  =  MHG.  snuor — schnur  {nurus) 
— MHG.  snur.  English  is  specially  rich  in  instances  of  this  process. 
\cf.  such  cases  as  shed  (asceddan, '  to  part '),  shed, '  a  hut '  (doublet  of 


sliade)  ;  sheer  (allied  to  Icelandic  skarr, '  bright ') ;  sheer  (a  doublet 
of  shear,  akin  to  Dutch  scheren);  sallow  ('a  willow'),  sallow, 
('  yellowish  ')  ;  rouse,  row,  rock,  quarry,  purl,  punch,  pump,  box,  etc. J 
349.  It  sometimes  happens  that  two  such  words,  in  spite 
of  their  different  meaning,  become,  for  the  instinct  of  language, 
one.  No  one  without  special  philological  knowledge  will  suspect 
that  two  entirely  distinct  words  have  coalesced  in  the  German 
word  unter,  namely  the  Latin  word  mter  and  another  con- 
nected with  the  Latin  infra  (SKT.  andhari).  Few  would 
suspect  that  the  phrase  ein  schiff  lichten  is  of  a  different 
origin  (mhg.  Ithten,  '  to  lighten ')  from  die  anker  lichten  (Low 
*cf.  Eag.  German  form  for  liiften,  English  lift),*  Schlingen  {devorare)  is  the 
W  A.s"''""  MHG.  form  of  an  elder  slinden  {cf,  schlund),  and  the  word  has 
perhaps  taken  firm  root  in  the  written  language  because  it  has 
coalesced  with  schlingen  =  M.}iG.  slingen.  In  the  phrase  in  die 
schanz  schlagen  few  are  aware  that  we  are  dealing  with  the  French 
word  chance,  and  not  with  the  German  word  schanz.  Certain  cases 
are  more  instructive  still  in  which  formal  influence  has  been  at 
work.  It  may  be  a  mere  conjecture  that  mahlen  (MHG.  main)  has 
passed  from  the  strong  into  the  weak  conjugation  under  the 
influence  of  malen  (MHG.  mdlen).  But  it  is  less  questionable  that 
the  transference  of  laden  {einladen,  OHG.  ladon)  into  the  strong  con- 
jugation has  been  caused  by  contact  with  laden  {aufladen,  OHG. 
hladan,  English  lade) ;  while  conversely  weak  forms  of  the  latter 
tz«7c.  103.  appear  as  well — e.g.  iiberladete  occurs  in  LESSiNG.tand  laSest  B.x\d 
ladet  are  in  actual  use.  It  is  certain  that  a  strong  form  er  befdhrt 
occurring  in  jEAN  PAUL,  in  connexion  with  befahren  (else  conjugated 
as  a  weak  verb  =  MHG.  vdren)  is  due  to  a  confusion  with  the  strong 
befahren  (MHG.  varn).  In  Austria,  kennen  and  kijnnen  are  confused ; 
one  hears,  for  instance,  der  schauspieler  hat  seine  rolle  nicht  gekannt. 
In  the  case  of  the  two  last  instances,  we  have  words  etymologically 


connected,  but  still  essentially  different,  confused.  It}  mhg.  we 
find  two  etymologically  different  particles  wan;  one  with  an 
adversative,  the  other  with  a  causal  meaning  used  in  the  sense  of 
NHG.  denn.  The  latter  has  a  fuller  by-form,  wande,  which  comes 
to  be  used  sometimes  in  an  adversative  sense,  where  such  sense 
is  not  justified  by  its  origin  {cf.  MHG.  Worterbuch,  iii.  479  b).  In 
(HIG.  the  prepositions  int-  and  in  in  composition  with  a  verb, 
have  often  coalesced  into  the  form  in-,  the  t  disappearing  by  assimi- 
lation with  the  following  consonants.  It  thus  happens  that  the 
form  int-,  being  taken  for  a  doublet  of  in-,  has  passed  into  cases 
where  in  should,  strictly  speaking,  be  used  ;  cf.,  NHG.  entbrennen, 
entzunden,  etc.  The  German  prefix  zer-  had  in  olden  times  a  by- 
form  ze-,  which  developed  into  zer-  before  a  vowel,  and  ze-  before 
a  consonant.  This  form  was,  phonetically  speaking,  identical  with 
the  preposition  ze-,  which  is  of  wholly  different  origin.  The 
adverbial  form  zuo  (MHG.  zii)  appeared  side  by  side  with  these, 
which  gradually  thrust  completely  aside  the  form  ze.  This  zu  is 
also  found  for  ze-  =  zer-,  e.g.,  in  LuTHER.  The  AS.  td-,  used  in  the 
sense  of  zer-,  is  to  be  similarly  explained.  ^ 

350.  Unconnected  words  coalesce  into  material-groups  owing  Union  of 

.T.1   •       •         1  •  I  •  unrelated  I 

to  accidental  partial  unification.     This  is  the  simplest  variety  of  words  in 

•    •         .  <  [.  material 

so-called   popular   etymology,  consisting  solely  in   a  change   of  groups; 
meaning  effected  by  the  impulse  of  language  without  the  sound- form  of 

t  X      -  T   •  /•     1  ■     popular  ety- 

form  undergoing  any  change.     It  is  a  necessary  condition  01  this  moiogy). 
that  the  true  etymology  of  one  of  the  words  has  been  obscured, 
so  that  it  has  no  other  more  natural  connexion. 

351.  The  component  parts  of  a  compound  word  are  specially 
subject  to  such  changes;  thus  the  German  word  erivdhnen  is 
apprehended  as  compounded  with  •wd/tnen  =  MnG.  wanen,  while 
it  really  and  truly  contains  rather  the  MHG.  {ge^wehenen :  in 
the  case  of  freitag  we  are  tempted  to  think  of  the  adjective  frei. 

1  \Cf.  the  curious  survival  'to  brake  '  Judges,  ix.  53.    Translator]. 


[In  sovereign  we  think  that  we  see  the  word  reign,  whereas  the 
old  English  form  was  soveraine,  French  souverain :  in  island 
we  fancy  that  we  have  a  word  connected  with  the  Latin  insula, 
whereas  it  represents  in  fact  the  AS.  igland.']  Proper  names  are 
more  exposed  than  any  others  to  change  of  significance  ;  cf. 
Reinwald,  Bdrwald,  Braunwald,  in  which  the  latter  half  was 
not  originally  equivalent  to  silva,  but  was  the  noun  of  the  agent 
from  walten ;  Glaub-recht  and  Lieb-recht  are  originally  probably 
compounded  with  brecht  =  OHG.  berakt;  Sauerlant  is  a  High 
German  form  of  Stterland=Siiderlant.  Other  instances  may  be 
seen  in  Andresen's  Volksetymologie  [and  A.  S.  Palmer's  Folk-Ety- 
mology,  1882].  In  this  case  the  change  of  meaning  has  ensued 
without  any  support  derived  at  the  very  outset  from  a  connexion 
in  the  meaning.  Nothing  is  in  fact  operative  but  the  natural 
expectation  of  finding,  in  a  word  which  looks  like  a  compound, 
familiar  elements. 

352.  Proper  names  hold  out  least  successfully  against  such 
secondary  relationship  attaching  to  the  sound  alone,  simply  be- 
cause here  no  contradiction,  any  more  than  agreement,  of  mean- 
ing is  possible.  There  are,  however,  cases  as  well  in  which 
it  is  possible  to  restore  a  relation  between  the  significations  of 
the  word  in  question  ;  cf.  MHG.  endekrist,  phonetically  developed 
from  antikrist ;  NHG.  lanzknecht  from  landes  knecht ;  wahnwitz, 
wahnsinn,  wahnschaffen,  falsely  connected  with  wahn  (MHG.  w&n), 
while  the  MHG.  wan  ('empty'  [seen  in  wan-kope])  lies  at  their 
real  root ;  friedhof,  from  MHG.  frithof;  vormund  is  referred  to 
mund,  'a  protection  ; '  verweisen  does  not  belong  to  weisen  {  =  mbg. 
wtsen),  but  comes  from  the  MHG.  verwtzen.  Umringen,  as  its 
weak  inflexion  proves,  is  in  its  origin  no  compound  from  ringen, 
but  is  a  derivative  from  the  mhg.  umberinc,  now  obsolete.  But 
the  fact  that  it  is  accentuated  umringen  shows  that  it  is  appre- 



hended  in  meaning  as  a  compound  from  um  and  ringen.  A 
further  result  of  the  change  of  meaning  was  the  formation  of  a 
participle  umrungen,  and  even  of  a  preterite  umrang  {see  Sanders, 
ii.  764).  Words,  too,  which  are  really  and  truly  no  compounds, 
but  which  give  the  effect  of  being  so  owing  to  the  full  conforma- 
tion of  their  sounds,  are  thus  stamped  as  true  compounds ; 
of.  leumund,  which  is  appreciated  as  hutemund,  but  is  really 
derived  from  the  Gothic  hliuma  (auris)  ;  weissagen,  MHG.  wissagen 
=  OHG.  wizagon,  which  is  really  a  derivation  from  wtzago,  'the 
witting  one,'  'the  prophet;'  trubsdlig,  armsdlig,  etc.,  which  are 
mere  derivatives  from  trubsal,  arnisal,  etc.,  are  supposed  to  be 
formed  by  the  derivative  suffix  -sal. 

353.  It  is  a  rarer  case  when  a  word  is  apprehended  as  a  derivative 
of  another  with  \Vhich  it  is  wholly  unconnected.^  The  NHG.  sucht 
is  apprehended  by  the  instinct  of  language  as  connected  with 
suchen.  It  really  comes  from  the  MHG.  suht  (  =  Gothic  saukts), 
which  has  nothing  to  do  with  the  MHG.  suochen  (Gothic  sokjan). 
The  NHG.  inclination  to  connect  the  word  with  suchen  depends 
on  such  compounds  as  wassersiicht,  mondsucht,  gelbsucht,  schwind- 
sucht,  eifersucht,  sehnsucht,  ehrsucht,  etc.,  which  were  apprehended 
as  '  a  longing  for  water,'  '  for  the  moon,'  etc.  Hans  Sachs  appre- 
hends -suht  still  as  an  '  illness,'  as  he  shows  by  writing  wann  er 
hat  auch  die  eifersucht.  On  the  other  hand  we  may  compare 
the  well-known  proverb  eifersucht  ist  eine  leidenschaft,  die  mit 
eifer  sucht,  was  leiden  schafft.  The  word  laute  is  regarded  as 
connected  with  laut,  but  is  really  a  loan  word  from  the  Arabic. 
[In  the  same  way  in  Y-n^i^,  posthumous  is  popularly  connected 
•with,  post  humum,  dismal  with  dies  malus ;  the  sixteenth  century 
connected  abominable  (written  abhominable)  with  ab-hotno,  as  if  the 

1  Cf.  Outlines  of  a  History  of  the  German  Language  (last  Chapter),  by  Strong  and 
Meyer  (London :   Sonnenschein). 



word  signified  inhuman.]  In  the  case  of  the  word  hantieren,  which 
comes  from  Fr.  hunter,  we  think  of  hand;  in  the  case  ol  fallieren 
(from  Fr.  faillir)  of  fallen;  in  the  case  of  beschwichtigen,  the 
Low  German  form  of  the  MHG.  swiften,  of  schweigen ;  in  that 
of  schmdlen  (properly  'to  make  schmal,'  'to  impair')  we  think 
of  schmdhen.  The  words  Herrschaft,  herrlich,  and  herrschen  are 
derived  from  hehr  (hence  MHG.  form  hirschaft,  etc.),  but  are  now 
referred  to  herr,  with  which  word  they  were  originally  but  in- 
directly connected. 
Phonetic  354.  There  is   a    more    complex  kind   of  popular  etymology 

tion (com-      which  must  be  distinguished  from  those  described.     This  consists 

plex  kind  of 

popular  in  a  phonetic  transformation  whereby  a  word  which  reminds  us  of 
another  by  the  similarity  of  its  sound  is  brought  into  nearer  corre- 
spondence with  it  still.  Such  transformation  may  be  made  of  set 
purpose,  and  with  the  full  consciousness  that  those  who  employ 
the  word  are  deliberately  altering  its  form.  Such  linguistic  con- 
tortions are  often  handy  tools  for  humorous  writers:  Fischart 
employs  them  on  a  large  scale  in  German  [and  Dickens  and 
Thackeray  in  English].  Many  of  these  are  handed  down  as  tradi- 
tional jokes,  especially  in  student's  slang.  This  intentional 
humorous  phonetic  transformation  offers  no  problem  to  the  philo- 
loger.  It  merely  concerns  him  so  far  as  it  is  not  apprehended  as  a 
contortion  by  the  simple  minds  of  children  and  of  the  uneducated, 
but  is  accepted  and  propagated  as  the  genuine  form.  There  is, 
however,  doubtless  such  a  thing  as  an  unintentional  and  uncon- 
scious transformation,  which  proves  itself  to  be  such  by  the  absence 
of  any  humour.^  Foreign  words,  proper  names,  and  other  words 
whose  etymology  has  become  obscured  are  specially  exposed  to 
this ;  and  almost  exclusively  compounds,  or  words  which  in  virtue 

'  We  must  remark  that  this  must  not  be  confused  with  the  phonetic  substitution  to 
be  discussed  in  Chapter  XXII.  The  operations  of  the  two  processes  are  not  always, 
however,  clearly  separated. 


of  their  fuller  sound- apparatus      give     the  impression  of  being 

such.     In  this  process  either  the  first  element  is  exposed  to  a 

change,  as  in  the  case  oi  jubeljakr  (Hebrew  jodel),  dienstag,  Hul- 

dreich  (from  MHG.  UoMch),  maulwurf  (irom  MHG.  moltwurf),  Latin 

aurichalcum,  from  the  Greek  hpdxaXKo^ :   or  it  may  be  the  second 

only ;  cf.,  hagestolz,  Reinhold,  Gotthold,  Weinhold,  etc.,  from  -olt= 

wait}  abspannen,  from  MHG.  spanen,  'to  allure;'   absireifen,  from 

MHG.  stroufen;^  eindde,  from  MHG.  einoete  {cete  being  a  mere  suffix) : 

or  both   parts  may   be  affected;    cf.,  armbrust,  from   the   Latin 

arcubalista  ;  liebstdckel,  from  the  Latin  ligusticum ;  felleisen,  from 

French  valise;   ekrenhold,  from   herolt;    Hebrew  sanhedrin,  from 

Greek  crvveBptov    [cf.  the  vulgar  English   sparrow-grass  for   aspa- 

ragus].      One   part    changes    its    form,    while   the   other    merely 

changes  its'  meaning,  in  the  case  of  abseite,  formerly  upside,  from 

the  Greek   ai/rt?;    KUssnacht  from    Cussiniacum ;    probably   also 

in   Mailand  from   MHG.  Mildji.     These  examples  help  to  show 

that  an  additional  impulse  is  given  to  unification  if  the  meaning 

of  the  transformed  word  permits  of  being  connected  with  that 

of  its  model ;    but  such  impulse  is  not  absolutely  necessary  for 

its   production.     To   explain  the   process   we  have  to   notice  in 

the  first  instance  that  we  do  not  as  a  rule  apprehend  the  words 

and  sentences  which  we  hear  with  absolute  exactness  according 

to  their   several   factors.     We  commonly  to  some  extent  divine 

them  by  guesswork,  and  our  guess  depends  on  the  sense  which 

the  context  leads  us  to  expect.     In  the  process  we  come  naturally 

upon  sound-groups  with  which  we  are  quite  familiar ;  and  it  may 

thus  happen   that   the   very  first  time   that  the  word  is  heard, 

instead    of    an     intrinsically    meaningless    portion    of    a     long 

word,    a    word    in    ordinary    use    with    a    similar    sound    may 

^  The  h  has  probably  been  scarcely  ever  pronounced,  and  in  that  case  we  have  only 
a  change  of  meaning,  which  has  found  expression  in  the  orthography. 

^  In  this  case  the  dialectic  transition  from  eu  into  ei  comes  into  consideration. 


substitute    itself.     And    further,    a    portion    of    a    word,    which 
otherwise   has   no   hold   on   language,  has,  even   when   correctly 
caught,  no  firm  hold  on  the  memory,  and  it  is  therefore  possible 
that  on  the  attempt  at  reproduction  a  familiar  element  may  sub- 
stitute itself  as  an  independent  word.     And  when  such  substitution 
has  once  taken  place  either  in  the  process  of  hearing  or  in  that 
of  speaking,  the  substitution  has  the  advantage  over  the  renuine 
of  imprinting  itself  more  lastingly  on  the  memory.     It  is  natural 
to  expect  that  this  process  should  be,  as  a  rule,  confined  to  words 
of  more  than  ordinary  length.     Shorter   words  are  more  readily 
caught  and   more  readily   retained.     But  further,  we   are   accus- 
tomed to  expect  to  find  that  there  are  a  number  of  simple  words 
standing  isolated,  or  at  least  grouped  with  derivatives  generally 
familiar,  and  admitting  of  being  found  at  will,  while  we  expect 
besides,  in  a  word  which  gives   the  impression  of  a   compound, 
that  its   single  elements  should   admit  of  connexion  with  simple 
Union  in  355.  Phonetic   coincidence   is   a   more   active   efficient  on  the 


WW  fine-  ^°'''"^'   *^"   °"   *^  material    side   of  language.     The  processes 
tionisthc     which   range   themselves  under  this   head   fall   under  two  main 


groups— /.«.    according   as    forms    functionally   identical    or   func- 
tionally different  come  to  coincide. 

356.  The  disappearance  of  phonetic  differences  in  cases  of 
identity  of  function  may  act  beneficially  by  simplifying  the  forma- 
tion of  the  formal-groups.  Sometimes,  in  the  process,  only  the 
phonetic  differentiation  described  in  the  last  chapter  is  again 
cancelled.  Thus,  for  instance,  the  ORG.  formative  syllables  -ul, 
-al,  -il,  which  lie  on  the  same  lines,  converge  into  the  form  -el; 
and  similarly  the  three  -un,  -an,  -in,  converge  in  the  form  -en, 
etc.  But  such  differences  as  the  double  formation  of  the  com- 
parative and  superlative  in  OHG.  -iro,  -ist—-dro,  -dst,  or  the  two' 

•  We  have  here  to  disregard  the  isolated  case  of  einag—einig,  where  a  difference  of 
signification  meets  us. 


synonymous  methods  of  forming  the  adjective  in  -ag  and  -ig — in 
the  case  of  the  isolated  instance  oieinag,  eintg,  we  have  a  difference 
of  signification — serve  no  purpose,  and  it  is  thus  a  clear  gain  that 
we  have  at  present  only  -er,  \e\st,  and  -ig.  The  convergence, 
again,  of  two  entire  classes  of  inflexions  like  the  OHG.  words  in 
-dn,  -in,  into  the  MHG.  -en  is  merely  a  useful  simplification. 

357.  But  it  does  not  always  happen  that  phonetic  convergence 
affects  so  regularly  entire  systems  of  material-formal  groups. 
Commonly  speaking  it  affects  only  a  single  part  of  forms  con- 
nected with  each  other.  Then  it  contributes  not  to  the  simplifica- 
tion of  the  relations,  but  often  to  their  confusion. 

(a.)  The  phonetic  divergence  affects  consistently  the  entire 
forms  of  a  system  of  inflexion ;  but  it  affects  in  one  class  of 
inflexions  or  in  several  only  one  part  of  the  words  which  originally 
belonged  to  it.  While,  as  we  have  seen,  of  the  three  OHG.  classes 
of  the  weak  verbs  in  MHG.  two  have  completely  converged,  only 
those  of  the  third  class  which  have  the  root-syllable  short  (Gothic 
ending  in  -jan)  have  fully  united  with  them ;  those  with  long 
root-syllable  remain  still  differentiated  by  the  old  syncope  of  the 
central  vowel  in  the  preterite  and  perfect  participle,  and  it  may 
be  by  the  '  Ruck-umlaut ' ;  cf.}manete,  lebete,  wenete,  from  manota, 
lebeta,  wenita,  connected  with  manen,  leben,  wenen,  by  the  side 
of  neicte,  brante,  connected  with  neigen,  brennen.  The  OHG.  i- 
declension  has  completely  coalesced  with  the  0-  declension  with 
respect  to  its  terminations,  but  with  respect  to  the  arrangement 
of  its  stem  only  when  the  root-vowel  admits  of  no  umlaut.  Thus 
in  this  case  there  is  always  a  separation  closely  connected  with 
the  convergence,  or  it  may  be  that  a  separation  has  preceded 
thfe  convergence. 

(^.)  The  convergence  affects  all  the  words  of  several  classes 
of  inflexion  similarly,  but  not  all  the  forms  of  a  system  of  in- 

1  [In  English  we  owe  some  forms  to  lautliche  ruckubersetzung  from  ho.;  such  as 
tins,  OS.  LO.,  for  zins,  census:  Dutch  daaldey  (hence  dollar)  for  taUr :  lo.  grote  (Eng. 
groat)  for  mho.  gros,  grosse  (grossus).    Translator]. 


flexions.  This  is  a  very  common  case.  Thus  the  second  declension 
in  Latin  has  converged  with  the  fourth  in  the  nominative  and 
accusative  singular  only ;  and  so  with  the  o-  and  ?-declensions 
in  Gothic  {fisks,fisk — gasts,  gast). 

(c)  The  convergence  affects  only  one  part  of  the  words  of 
several  inflexional  classes,  and  only  one  part  of  the  forms  of  the 
inflexional  system.  Thus  in  OHG.  the  nominative  and  accusative 
of  the  2-,  U-,  and  o-  stems,  in  the  case  of  words  ending  with  either 
a  long  syllable  or  of  words  which  are  polysyllabic,  while  these 
cases  have  remained  separate  in  the  case  of  those  terminating 
in  a  short  syllable ;  cf.,  gast,  wald,  arm,  from  *gasti{z),  *waldu(z), 
*armo{z),  as  against  wini,  sunu,  and  a  form  *goto  which  may  at 
least  be  assumed. 

358.  When  the  case  (a)  has  occurred,  the  convergence,  as  well 
as  the  divergence,  of  inflexional  classes  is  definite,  and  admits  of 
no  reaction.  The  lasting  result  is  a  displacement  in  the  relative 
forces  of  the  groups  in  question,  the  one  receiving  an  accession 
at  the  expense  of  the  others.  The  cases  of  (B)  and  (c),  on  the 
other  hand,  produce  a  confusion  in  the  grouping.  Where  different 
phonetic  modifications  are  once  employed  for  the  same  function, 
it  is  most  convenient  for  the  phonetic  difference  to  go  through 
all  the  forms  of  a  system,  so  that  a  sharp  line  of  demarcation 
may  be  drawn  between  the  single  classes  of  inflexions,  and  each 
single  form  may  betray  at  a  glance  the  class  to  which  it  belongs. 

359.  Now  supposing  that  certain  forms  in  two  classes  coincide, 
while  some  diverge,  then  we  shall  find  that  a  word  is  easily 
arranged  wrongly  on  the  basis  of  the  forms  that  agree,  and  ana- 
logical formations  arise  in  the  place  of  the  traditional  forms  of 
the  one  class  which  rightly  belong  to  the  other.  It  is  then  possible 
for  language  to  gradually  work  its  way  out  of  the  vacillation,  and  the 
confusion  which  is  its  result,  to  simpler  and  more  stable  conditions. 



360.  Examples  are  easy  to  find  in  numbers.  I  would  refer 
particularly  to  the  reciprocal  influences  exercised  by  the  different 
classes  of  the  declensions  of  the  IE.  language  on  the  single  lan- 
guages— influences  which  have  almost  always  followed  as  a  result 
of  phonetic  convergence  in  several  cases,  especially  in  the  nomi- 
native and  accusative  singular.  In  most  cases  the  classes  which 
thus  converge  had  at  an  earlier  period  an  identical  or  approxi- 
mately identical  method  of  formation  ;  and  this  original  identity 
has  only  become  obscured  owing  to  secondary  sound-develop- 
ment, against  which  an  immediate  reaction  is  not  possible,  because 
the  differentiation  was  so  consistent.  Thus,  for  instance,  the 
unity  of  the  IE.  declension  had  been  mainly  destroyed  owing  to 
the  vowel  separation  which  has  set  in  under  the  influence  of  the 
accent,  and  the  contraction  of  the  final  syllable  of  the  stem  with 
the  regular  inflexional  termination.  These  changes  were  so  wide- 
reaching  that  many  further  changes — and  notably  changes  in 
the  direction  of  weakening — were  necessary  in  order  to  partially 
unite  again  on  an  entirely  different  basis  what  was  separated. 

361.  In  this  kind  of  convergence  the  result  commonly  is  that 
words  of  a  class  formed  in  one  way  pass  into  a  class  formed  in 
a  different  way,  and  they  may  do  this  either  entirely  or  only  in 
some  cases ;  either  in  all  forms  or  only  in  certain  ones.  The 
following  may  serve  as  an  example  of  the  latter.  In  Gothic  the 
masculines  of  the  i-  declension  in  the  singular  have  passed  into 
the  a-  declension  on  account  of  the  phonetic  convergence  in  the 
nominative  and  accusative,  and  the  case  is  similar  in  OHG.  The 
plural,  however,  remains  in  both  dialects  differently  inflected. 
The  fact  of  the  unification  being  arrested  at  this  particular  point 
is  a  result  of  the  never-failing  co-operation  of  the  etymological 
grouping,  and  so  far  the  maxim  is  confirmed ;  "  the  closer  the 
bond,  the  more  easy  the  influence." 

240       PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.         [Ch. 

362.  It  may  happen  that  either  only  the  one  group  is  active 
while  the  other  contents  itself  with  a  passive  rdle ;  or  that  both 
groups  are  active  and  passive  at  once.  In  NHG.  a  quantity  of 
weak  masculines  have  taken  the  inflexion  of  the  strong  ones  in 
-en,  from  which  they  differed  even  in  MHG.  only  in  their  nomina- 
tive and  genitive  singular  ;  cf.,  bogen  (  =  MHG.  boge),  garten,  kragen, 
schaden,  etc.  There  are,  however,  certain  cases  in  which  conversely 
a  strong  masculine  in  n  has  passed  over  into  the  weak  inflexion ; 
cf.,  heide  (  =  MHG.  heiden),  krist{e)  ( =  MHG.  kristen),  rabe  ( =  MHG. 

363.  If  such  reciprocal  influencing  and  counter-influencing  of 
two  groups  appears  in  the  same  words,  it  may  also  happen  that 
after  a  long  period  of  vacillation  a  completely  new  system  of 
flexional  formation  comes  into  existence.  Thus  a  mixed  class 
has  arisen  by  contamination  of  the  two  classes  just  referred 
to  :  der  glaube — des  glaicbens,  der  gedanke — des  gedankens,  etc. 
The  rise  of  this  mixed  class  is  easily  explained  if  we  remark 
that  once  double  forms  existed  in  the  nominative  just  as  in  the 
genitive:  der  glaube — der  glaubhi,  des  glauben — des  glaubens.  Then 
the  nominative  of  one  class  and  the  genitive  of  the  other  class 
became  established  in  the  written  language.  Thus,  again,  a  mixed 
class  has  arisen  from  the  reciprocal  influence  exercised  by  the 
weak  masculines  with  rejected  final  vowel  on  the  one  hand,  and 
by  the  strong  masculines  on  the  other,  which  inflect  the  singular 
strong  and  the  plural  weak  :  schmerz,  -es,  -e — sckmerzen.  Similarly 
in  the  case  of  neuters :  bett,  -es,  -e — betlen.  The  most  extensive 
instance  of  the  kind  in  NHG.  is  the  regular  inflexion  of  the  femi- 
nines  in  -e,  which  is  a  fusion  of  the  old  a-declension  with  the 
n-  (or  weak)  declension.  In  MHG.  the  inflexion  still  runs  as 
follows  : — 


SG.  N.  vrbude  zunge. 

G.  vroude  zungen. 

D.  vroude  zungen. 

A.  vroude  zungen. 

PL.  N.  vroude  zungen. 

G.  vrouden  zungen. 

D.  vrouden  zungen. 

A.  vroude  zungen. 

364.  In  NHG.  the  word  freude  or  zunge  holds  good  for  the 
whole  singular  throughout,  and  the  forms  freuden  and  zungen 
.  run  through  the  whole  plural.  This  is  again  a  characteristic 
example  of  a  useful  transformation  attained  without  any  con- 
sciousness of  its  result.  The  greater  advantage  of  the  NHG. 
scheme  consists  not  merely  in  the  fact  that  the  memory  is  thereby 
considerably  relieved  ;  but  thereby  the  two  terminations  which  are 
alone  common  to  both  are  distributed  in  the  most  convenient  fashion 
possible.  It  is  more  important  to  discriminate  numbers  than 
cases,  because  the  latter  are  also  characterised  by  the  article  which 
is  in  most  instances  attached  to  them.  In  MHO.  die  vroude  and 
die  zungen  may  be  the  accusative  singular  and  the  nominative 
accusative  plural,  while  der  zungen  may  be  the  genitive  singular 
and  plural.  These  uncertainties  are  now  no  longer  possible ;  on 
the  other  hand,  in  the  case  of  zunge,  only  the  power  of  marking 
the  difference  between  the  nominative  and  accusative  singular  is 
cancelled.  But  if  we  examine  how  these  circumstances  have 
developed,  we  shall  find  that  as  a  preliminary  process  a  general 
encroachment  has  taken  place  of  each  of  the  two  classes  into  the 
department  of  the  other.  And  it  was  natural  that  this  should 
be  the  result  as  soon  as  once  phonetic  convergence  had  declared 
itself  in  the  case  of  three  forms  (nominative  singular,  and  genitive 
and   dative  plural).     The  circumstance  was  thus   produced  that 



each  form,  with  the  sole  exception  of  the  nominative  singular, 
might  terminate  in  -e  as  well  as  in  -en.  In  all  this  no  single 
form  was  created  with  the  special  object  of  serving  a  purpose ; 
but  the  maintenance  or  disappearance  of  every  form  has  been 
determined  by  its  utility. 

365.  Reciprocal  influence  in  the  case  of  two  groups  always 
assumes  that  their  reciprocal  forces  are  not  too  unevenly  balanced. 
In  any  other  case  the  influence  will  be  one-sided,  and  thus  more 
prevailing  and  more  rapid  in  attaining  its  end.  Those  classes 
of  course  are  always  exposed  to  especial  risk  which  are  not  re- 
presented by  numerous  examples  —  that  is,  supposing  that 
these  are  not  protected  by  the  special  frequency  with  which 
they  occur.  The  limited  extent  of  certain  classes  as  contrasted 
with  others  may  have  existed  from  the  very  earliest  times, 
through  no  more  words  having  been  formed  in  the  way  in 
question,  but  it  is  often,  in  the  first  instance,  a  result  of  secondary 
development.  It  either  happens  that  many  words  originally 
belonging  to  the  class  die  out,  in  which  process  the  case 
may  occur  that  one  method  of  creating  forms,  originally  a 
living  method,  dies  out,  and  is  merely  handed  on  as  a  'usual' 
formation,  in  a  few  cases  in  common  use.  Or  it  may  be  that 
the  class  splits  up  into  several  sub-divisions  owing  to  phonetic 
variations,  which  lose  all  bond  of  connexion  as  no  immediate 
reaction  against  them  is  made.  Thus  the  greatest  possible  sub- 
division of  one  is  sometimes  the  best  possible  way  of  finally 
uniting  two  different  methods  of  formation  with  each  other. 
Observations  in  this  sense  may  be  made,  for  instance,  in  the 
history  of  the  gradual  disappearance  of  the  consonantal  and  the 
^-declension  in  German. 

366.  Supposing  that  one  class  has  gained  any  decisive  advan- 
tage over  one  or  several  others  with  which  it  has  certain  points 


of  contact,  the  latter  are  infallibly  predestined  to  perish.  It 
is  only  the  fact  of  frequent  occurrence  which  is  able  to  impart 
force  enough  to  enable  certain  words  to  escape  for  any  long  period 
the  otherwise  overwhelming  influence.  These  then  exist  for  the 
future  in  their  isolation  under  the  name  oi  anomalous  forms*  *■"■  Maizner 

■'  1.  212. 

367.  Every  language  is  incessantly  engaged  in  eliminating  all 
useless  irregularities,  and  securing  identity  between  functional  and 
phonetic  expression.  All  languages  are  not  equally  successful. 
We  find  single  languages,  and  single  stages  of  development  of  these 
languages,  anything  but  equidistant  from  this  goal.  But  even 
the  language  which  succeeds  in  approximating  most  nearly  to  its 
aim,  fails  signally  in  attaining  it.  In  spite  of  all  the  transforma- 
tions which  operate  to  this  end,  it  remains  always  unattainable. 

368.  The  reasons  why  it  is  thus  unattainable  are  easily  appre- 
hended from  the  remarks  previously  made.  In  the  first  place 
forms  and  words  which  have  been  isolated,  by  whatever  means, 
remain  untouched  by  the  normalising  process.  For  instance, 
a  case  formed  after  an  ancient  model  survives  as  an  adverb 
or  as  a  member  of  some  compound,  or  a  participle  formed 
after  an  older  model  survives  as  a  purely  nominal  form.  This 
certainly  does  not  interfere  with  the  regularity  of  the  actually 
living  methods  of  formation.  However,  in  the  second  place,  it 
is  a  matter  of  the  merest  accident  whether  a  partial  abolition 
of  the  class-differences  by  phonetic  means,  which  is  so  often  the 
condition  precedent  to  entire  unification,  appears  or  not.  In 
the  third  place,  the  capacity  for  resistance  shown  by  the  single 
words  of  the  same  formation  differs  considerably  according  to  the 
degree  of  force  with  which  they  are  impressed  on  the  memoiy ; 
and  this  is  why,  as  a  rule,  precisely  the  most  indispensable  elements 
of  daily  language  survive  as  anomalies.  In  the  fourth  place,  the 
inevitable  prevalence  of  a  single  class  is  always  the  result  of  a 


chance  convergence  of  circumstances.  As  long  as  this  prevalence 
does  not  exist,  it  is  possible  for  the  single  words  to  be  impelled 
now  to  one  side  and  now  to  another,  and  thus  it  is  possible,  owing 
to  the  operation  of  analogy,  for  a  chaotic  confusion  to  be  created, 
until  the  very  excess  of  such  confusion  conduces  to  the  cure  of  the 
evils  in  question.  In  the  face  of  so  many  adverse  circumstances, 
it  is  natural  enough  that  the  process  under  the  most  favourable 
circumstances  should  advance  so  slowly  that  before  it  has  even 
approximately  come  to  a  termination,  new  phonetic  differences 
should  have  arisen,  requiring  unification.  The  same  ever-variable 
character  of  the  sounds  which  is  indispensable  as  an  impulse  to  the 
work  of  unification,  proves  also  the  destroyer  of  the  work  which  it 
has  started,  before  that  work  is  accomplished. 

369.  We  can  see  the  truth  of  this  in  the  conditions  of  the  de- 
clensions in  the  NHG.  written  language.  In  the  feminine  the  three 
main  classes  of  MHG.,  i.e.,  the  ancient  i-,  a-,  and  ^-declension  are 
reduced  to  two  {cf.  supra,  p.  241).  As  the  remains  of  the  con- 
sonantal and  of  the  2^-declensions  {cf.,  e.g.,  MHG.,  hant,  plural 
hende,  hande,  handen,  hende)  have  also  gradually  intruded  into 
the  z-class,  we  should  have  two  simple  and  easily-distinguish- 
able schemes :  (i)  the  singular  without  -e,  the  plural  with  -e, 
and  it  may  be  with  the  umlaut  (bank  —  bdnke,  hinderniss  — 
hindernisse);  (2)  the  singular  with  -e,  the  plural  with  -en  (zunge 
■—zungen).  However,  the  non-monosyllabic  stems  in  -er  and 
-el  do  not  at  once  accommodate  themselves  to  these  schemes 
{mutter  ^  mutter,  achsel — achseln),  having,  according  to  a  com- 
mon rule  already  established  in  MHG.,  throughout  lost  their  e 
(where  it  was  present  at  all).  These  would  not  be  very  effective  as 
disturbing  factors.  But  there  are,  besides,  many  feminines  which 
have  lost  their  terminal  -e  in  the  singular ;  all  the  non-monosyllabic 
stems  in  -inn  and  -ung,  and  many  monosyllabic,  as  frau,  huld,  kost, 


t.\.c.  =  wa.Q,.frouwe,hulde,koste,  etc.  The  process  of  development 
in  the  case  of  the  latter  has  probably  been  this,  that  originally 
in  the  case  of  all  bisyllabic  feminines  in  -e,  duplicate  forms 
made  their  appearance,  according  to  their  different  positions  in 
the  sentence,  and  that  the  unification  which  again  set  in  after 
this  has  had  a  different  result.  Besides  this,  the  strife  between 
Upper  German  and  Middle  German  for  the  supremacy  in  the 
written  language  comes  into  consideration.  However  this  may 
be,  a  new  separation  appears :  zunge — zungen,  but  frau — -frauen. 
And  at  the  same  time  the  clear  distinction  between  the  two 
classes  is  an  impossibility  for  the  future ;  frau  corresponds  to 
bank  in  the  singular,  in  the  plural  to  zunge.  This  new  confusion 
was  certainly  of  advantage  to  the  further  unification.  The  contact 
between  the  formation  frau  and  the  formation  bank  entailed  the 
attraction  of  a  great  number  of  words,  indeed  of  the  majority,  from 
the  former  into  the  latter;  cf,  burg  (plural  burgen  =  U'HG.  burge), 
flut,  welt,  tugend,  etc.,  and  all  the  words  in  -heit,  -keit,  -schaft.  By 
this  method  we  might  have  arrived  at  a  uniform  way  of  forming 
the  plural  in  -en  (n),  and  the  difference  between  words  with  and 
without  e  would  have  subsisted  in  the  singular  only.  But  the 
impulse  did  not  hold  to  the  end,  and  considerable  traces  of  the  old 
2-declension  remain  in  antagonism  to  it. 

370.  Similar  observations  hold  good  for  the  case  of  the  mas- 
culine and  neuter ;  only  that,  in  the  case  of  these,  still  more 
confusing  circumstances  are  combined.  In  this  case,  too,  the 
relations  were  calculated  to  produce  a  sharp  inflexional  division 
between  the  substantives  without  -e  and  those  which  have  -e  in  the 
nominative  singular  (arm — arme,  wori — worte ;  h\xt  funke—funken, 
auge — atcgen)  were  it  not  that  the  rejection  of  the  e  in  one  part  of 
the  word  had  interfered  (mensck — menschen,  herz — kerzen). 

371.  The  phonetic  convergence  of  forms  functionally  different, 


fo°ma"i'"      comes  about  within  the  etymological  groups.     Thus  in  OHG.  the 
groups:  w    transition  from  final  unstressed  m  to  n  causes  the  coincidence  of 

where  the 

function  is     thc  secoudarv  termination  of  the  first  and  third  person  plural:  in 

diHerent.  •'  ^ 

the  older  sources  gdbum — gabun,  gdbim — gdbin,  in  the  later  for 
two  persons  gdbun,  gdbtn.  Such  coincidence  is  occasioned  on  the 
largest  scale  by  the  weakening  of  the  full  final  vowels  of  the  OHG. 
to  a  consistent  e.  Thus,  MHO.  tage  =  OHG.  tage  (dative  singular) — 
taga  (nominative  plural) — tago  (genitive  plural) ;  MHG.  hanen,  OHG. 
hanin  (genitive  and  dative  singular) — hanun  (accusative  singular, 
and  nominative  and  accusative  plural) — kandno  (genitive  plural) — 
handm  (dative  plural)  and  in  the  OHG.  forms  we  find  already 
evidence  of  the  convergence  of  forms  which  differed  before.  The 
convergence  does  not  prevail  always  through  an  entire  inflexional 
class  ;  it  need  not  necessarily  affect  more  than  one  part  of  the 
words  which  originally  belonged  to  that  class  ;  cf  e.g.,  tag — tage — 
tagen  with  sessel — sessel — sesseln,  winter — winter — wintern,  and 
wagen — wagen — wagen.  This  convergence  in  the  case  of  deriva- 
tives from  the  same  base  is  rarer  than  in  the  case  of  inflexional 
forms.  Since  such  derivatives  may  of  themselves  merely  make  up 
an  entire  system  of  forms,  it  is  possible  for  the  convergencer  to  be  a 
merely  partial  one  in  two  directions.  It  is  possible,  on  the  one 
hand,  that  in  several  classes  of  words  originally  differing  pho- 
netically, only  a  part  of  the  words  may  coincide.  Thus,  for 
instance,  it  is  possible  in  OHG.  for  two  weak  verbs  to  be  formed 
out  of  each  adjective,  viz.,  an  intransitive  in  -6n  and  a  transitive  in 
-en  (  =  Gothic  -jan).  In  mhg.  both  classes  come  to  coincide  in  their 
terminations,  but  in  the  form  of  the  root-syllable  this  coinci- 
dence is  only  partial,  as  most  of  them  remain  separated  by  the 
'  presence  or  absence  of  the  umlaut ;  cf.  on  the  one  side  leiden  from 

leiddn,  '  to  be  unpleasant,'  and  leiden  from  leiden,  '  to   render  un- 
pleasant ; '  rtchen, '  to  become  rich,'  and  '  to  render  rich  ; '  niuwen, '  to 


become  new  '  and  'to  render  new;'  on  the  other  hand,  armen,  'to 
become  poor ' — ermen, '  to  render  poor,'  swAren,  '  to  become  heavy ' 
— swceren, '  to  make  heavy.'  On  the  other  hand,  there  is  no  neces- 
sity for  phonetic  convergence  to  spread  over  all  the  forms  of  two 
related  words.  In  the  case  of  NHG.  schmelzen,  two  words  absolutely 
different  have  converged,  viz.,  smelzen  (with  open  e)  strong  and 
intransitive,  and  smelzen  with  closed  e,  weak  and  transitive.  The 
convergence,  however,  extends  only  to  the  forms  of  the  present, 
and  even  from  these  the  second  and  third  persons  of  the  indicative 
singular,  and  the  second  person  singular  of  the  imperative  are 
excluded  ;  cf.,  schmilzt,  schmilz — schmelzt,  schmelze. 

372.  The  phonetic  convergence  of  functionally  different  forms 
has  further  results.  One  such  result  is  this,  that  persons  grow 
so  accustomed  to  phonetic  regularity,  that  they  transfer  it  to 
cases  where  it  is  not  yet  warranted  by  the  natural  process  of 
sound-development.  In  the  case  of  the  OHG.  verb  the  first  person 
plural  has  taken  the  same  form  as  the  third  person  plural ;  this  is 
owing  to  the  transition  of  m  final  into  n  {gdbun  from  gAbum — 
g-dbun),  with  the  exception  of  the  case  of  the  indicative  preseilt 
where  the  difference  has  passed  even  into  the  MHG.  period  ;  geben 
—gebent.  This  difference  disappears  in  the  first  place  in  Middle 
German,  and  then  in  Upper  German  as  well,  as  has  been  already 
remarked  on  p.  107,  by  the  identification  of  the  form  of  the  third 
person  plural  with  that  of  the  third  person  plural  of  the  preterite  and 
subjunctive.  It  may  be  that  the  process  of  becoming  gradually 
accustomed  to  the  coincidence  of  the  first  and  third  person  plural 
has  co-operated  to  this  end.  It  is,  no  doubt,  the  effect  of  such 
process  when,  in  the  Alemannic,  forms  in  -ent  have  been  used  from 
the  fourteenth  century  for  the  first  person  plural  as  well.  The 
coincidence  between  the  first  and  the  third  persons  plural  appears 
even  in  the  written  language  of  to-day  in  sind  =MfiG.  stn—sint; 


in  Upper  Saxon,  conversely,  the  third  person  pi.  is  sein.     Another 
example  is  given  us  by  the  coincidence  between  the  nominative 
and  accusative  in  German.     In  original  Teutonic  both  cases  were 
in  the  masculine  and  feminine  for  the  most  part  still  different.     It 
seems  probable  that  identity  merely  existed  in  the  plural  of  the 
feminine   «-stems    (GOT.  gibds,   ON.  giafar).     In    OHG.,    as   in  the 
other  West-Teutonic  dialects,  the  nominative  singular  of  the  o-, 
i',  and  z/-stems,  and  of  the  consonantal  stems  with  the  exception 
of  the  so-called  weak  declension,  has  become  identified  with  the 
accusative  by  the  disappearance  of  the  final  s  {fisc,  balg,  sunu,  man 
=  GOT.  fisks  — fisk,  balgs  —  balg,   sunus  —  sunu  and  ON.  fiskr — 
fisk,    belgr  —  belg,    sonr  —  son,  maSr  —  mann)  ;    further,    phonetic 
coincidence  has  made  its  appearance  in  the  nominative  and  accu- 
sative pi.  of  the  weak  declension  {kanun,  zungUn;  Orig.  Teut.  prob. 
*kanoniz — *kanonz).     This  gives  a  tendency  to  further  convergence. 
The  form  of  the  nominative  plural  of  the  o-,  i-,  and  u-  stems  and 
of  the  consonantal  stem  has  penetrated  into  the   accusative,  and 
has  thus  restored  the  same  agreement  as  in   the  singular:  taga, 
balgi    {belgi),    sum  =  Gothic    dagSs  —  dagans,     balgeis  —  balgins, 
sunjus  —  sununs,  and  ON.  dagar  —  daga,  belgir  —  belgi,    synir— 
sunu   (somi).      The   forms   which   regular  sound-change  in  OHG. 
would  have  led  us  to  expect  in  the  accusative,  would  have  been 
*tagun,  *balgin,  *sunun.      In  the  case  of  the  consonantal  stems, 
unification  has  also  set  in  in  Gothic  and  ON. ;  we  may  assume  that 
in  original  Teutonic  such  forms  as  mannis* — mannunz*  existed  = 
OHG.  man — mannun,  which  latter  form  has  been    ousted     by     the 
former.     In  the  case  of  the  adjective  as  well,  and  the  pronoun  which 
marks  gender,  the  nominatival  form  has  affected  the  accusative : 
blinte  {-a),  die  {did)  =  GOT.  blindai—blindans,  \ai—yans.     In  the  case 
of  the  feminine  «-stems  on  the  other  hand,  the  phonetic  identity  of 
both  cases  has  brought  about  an  identification  in  the  singular.     In 



the  first  place  both  forms,  the  nominative  and  accusative  form,  were 
used  indifferently  ;  next  the  accusative  form  established  itself  as  a 
rule,  while  the  nominative  form  was  confined  to  definite  cases,  and 
disappeared  more  and  more.  While  AS.  differentiates  z^efu  and  z^efe, 
dr — Are,  we  have  in  OHG.  only  the  accusative  forms  geba  and  ira, 
and  side  by  side  as  nominative  and  accusative  halba  and  halp,  wtsa 
and  wts,  etc.  In  NHG.  further,  in  the  feminine  of  the  weak  adjective, 
the  accusative  form  is  ousted  by  the  nominatival  form :  lange  = 
MHG.  lange — langen  ;  further  the  feminine  nominative  form  of  the 
article  is  ousted  by  the  accusatival  form:  die—yiYLQ.  diu — die  ■ 
as  early  as  in  mh^;.  the  nominative  siu  is  ousted  by  sie.  In 
Rheno-Franconian  and  Alemannic,  on  the  contrary,  we  find  also 
the  nominative  form  of  the  article  der  used  accusativally. 

373.  If,  in  any  language,  a  convergence  of  originally  different 
case-forms  occurs  on  a  large  scale,  the  cause  of  this  may  be  that 
the  remains  which  were  spared  ff-om  this  convergence  are  entirely 
or  mostly  abolished,  as  has  happened  in  the  case  of  English  and 
the  Romance  languages.  Thus  pure  stem-forms  again  take  their 
rise  as  they  existed  before  the  case-formation  which  we  incorrectly 
call  nominative  or  accusative. 

374.  When  the  forms  of  cognate  words  partially  converge,  the 
feeling  for  the  difference  of  these  words  is  rendered  less  keen,  and 
thus  the  forms  which  have  not  yet  converged  are  easily  confused. 
The  partial  coincidence,  touched  on  above,  of  MHG.  smelzen  and 
smelzen  has  entailed  the  result  that  the  strong  forms  schmilzt, 
schmolz,  geschmolzen  are  employed  transitively  as  well :  the  weak 
forms  have  at  the  present  time  fallen  completely  into  disuse.  In 
the  same  way,  the  weak  forms  of  verderben,  which  acquired  an 
exclusively  transitive  signification,  are  ousted  by  the  strong  forms, 

which   were   originally  transitive  only,  and  can  be   used   at  the  .[c/Vema- 


present   day  only   in  a   moral   sense.*      In   the   case  of  quellen,  o.syn. 



schtvellen,  Idschen,  the  difference  is  maintained  in  what  passes  for 
correct  language  nowadays ;  but  from  loscken  weak  forms  some- 
times come  in  an  intransitive  form,  e.g.,  es  Idscht  das  licht  der  sterm 
(Schiller)  ;  in  the  case  of  quellen  and  schwellen,  we  find  a  confusion 
in  both  directions,  e.g.,  dem  das  frischeste  leben  entquellt  (GOE.) — 
gleichwie  ein  born  sein  wasser  quillt  (Lu.) ;  schwelle,  brust  (GOE.) 
die  haare  schwellten  (TiECK) — die  ehrsucht  schwillt  die  brust 
(Gunther),  seifenblasen,  die  mein  hauch  geschwolkn  (ChamisSO). 





HE   arrangement  of  single   words   and    forms,   and   of  the  Entrance 

into  a  new 

_i_  syntactical  connexions  between  different  linguistic  groups  group 
depends  in  every  case  upon  their  function.  Thus  a  functional  direction  of 
change  may  be  the  ultimate  cause  of  a  transition  into  another  formation, 
group.  Participation,  however,  in  this  group  entails  participation 
in  its  creative  power.  Thus  there  arise  new  analogical  creations 
which  proceed  in  a  direction  different  from  that  which  the  origin 
of  the  word-form  or  method  of  construction  would  have  led  us  to 
believe.     The  following  examples  may  serve  to  exemplify  this. 

376.  The  change  of  an  appellative  into  a  proper  name  causes  a  Results  of 

the  change 

corresponding    change   of   declension;    cf    the   accusatives    andofana>js«^ 

iative  into 

datives  of  such  words  as  Mullern,  Schneidern,  Beckern,  etc.     It  was  ^.proper 


a  consequence  of  the  monotheism  introduced  by  Christianity,  that 
from  got  an  accusative  gotan  was  formed  in  OHG.  after  the  analogy 
of  proper  names.  We  may  compare  with  this  such  datives  and 
accusatives  as  vatern  and  niuttern  which  we  commonly  hear  in 

377.  The  Greek  adverbs  in  -w;  were  originally  cases  of  theofaM« 
(?-declension.^  But  when  they  had  once  become  detached  from  the  admrb; 
inflexional   system,   and  -«?   felt   as  a   formative  word-suffix,  it 

was  able  to  attach  itself  to  other  stems  which  had   received  no 

\See  Victor  Henry's  Comparative  Grammar  of  Greek  and  Latin,  §  187  (London  ; 
Sonnenschein,    1890).  Translator.] 


influence  from  the  <7-stems ;  cf.  such  cases  as  'hi^ka^,  a-atppovco^,  etc. 
The  case  is  similar  with  the  adverbial  suffix  -o  in  OHG.,  which  has 
been  likewise  transferred  from  the  o-stems  to  the  old  i-  and  u- 
stems :  kleino  and  harto,  following  Hobo,  etc. 

378.  There  are  in  NHG.  many  adverbs  which  are  in  their  origin 
genitives  singular  of  nouns  ;  such  are  falls,  rings,  rechts,  stracks, 
blindlings}  But  the  s  has  long  since  ceased  to  be  felt  as  a  sign  of 
the  genitive  ;  it  must  now  appear  as  an  adverbial  suffix.  Conse- 
quently it  has  since  the  seventeenth  century  been  transferred  to 
other  adverbs,  which  were  originally  cases  of  nouns,  or  unions  of 
a  preposition  with  a  case,  but  not  being  apprehended  as  such, 
have  passed  into  the  general  category  of  adverbs ;  cf.  allerdings 
(from  aller  dinge,  gen.  pi.)  schlechter dings,  jenseits,  disseits  (MHG. 

j'enstt,  ace.  sing.),  abseits  (from  ab  seite),  hinterriicks,  in  the  seven- 
teenth century  also  hinterriickens  (from  an  old  form  hinterrUck, 
hinterrilcken),  unterwegs,  unterwegens  (from  unter  wege,  unter 
wegen),  vollends  (earlier  vollen,  vollend ) ;  erstens,  zweiUns,  etc. 
The  change  of  the  s  from  a  case-suffix  into  a  formative  element  of 
words  has  also  made  it  possible  for  it  to  be  adopted  in  derivations : 
desfallsig,  allenfallsig. 

379.  Hans  Sachs  forms  a  comparative y&V>^jgr  from  ^«_^j.  This 
results  from  the  fact  that  the  substantival  case  has  come  to  stand 
on  the  same  line  with  the  adjectival  adverbs  which  alone  originally 
admit  of  comparison. 

ofasyntac-         380.  If  a  Syntactic  combination  has  passed  into  a  verbal  unit, 

tical  group 

into  a  single  then    this   Hcw   utiit   IS    treated    after  the   analogy  of  the  simple 


word,  and   the   possibilities   affecting   this   are    transferred   to  it. 
In  many  languages  an    inseparable  particle   attaches   itself  to  a 
•  pronoun.     The  result  may  be  that  the  inflexion  is  transferred  after 

the  model  of  the  simple  words  from  the  middle  to  the  end. 
Plautus   employs   still   the   accusatives  emnpse,   eampse,  and   the 

1  [So   also   eigangs,   J.  Grimm's  alt  deut.  Meistergesang,  170    {Gottingen,    1811). 




ablatives  eopse,  eapse,  from  i-pse,  which  forms  are  later  replaced  by 

ipsum,  etc.     A  similar  development  has  been  undergone  by  the 

German  pronoun  dii_er,  as  may  be  proved  especially  by  the  ON. 

Runic  forms.     This  word  is  a  compound  of  the  article  and  the 

particle  se.     Language  is  notably  enriched  by  the  fact  that  out  of 

such  compoun,ds,  which  owe  their  origin  to  secondary  fusion,  the 

same  derivations  are  formed  as  from  simple  words,  and  that  they    , 

are  able  to  serve  like  these,  as  the  member  of  a  compound :  cf 

Uberwinder,  uberwindung,  ergiehig,  befahrbar,  gedeihlich,  betriibniss, 

gevangenschaft,  befangenheit ;  edelmdnnisch,  hochmutig,jungfrdulich, 

landesherrlich,  landsmannschaft,  grossherzogtum,  bdrenhduter,  kinder- 

gdrtnerinn  ;  sofortig,  bissherig,  jenseitig  ;  rotweinflasche,  <rdnseleber- 

pastete ;  uberhandnahme,  vorwegnahme,  zurilcknakme. 

381.  Not  unfrequently  an  inflexional  form  becomes  fixed,  when  'Crystallisa- 
it  is  transferred  to  cases  with  which  it  has  strictly  speaking  nothing 

to  do.^     The  German  setter"^  is  the  nominative  singular  masculine, 

and  at  the  same  time,  the  genitive  and  dative  singular  feminine 

and  genitive  plural,  of  an  older  adjective  selb,  which  is  preserved  as 

an  adjective  still  only  in  the  word  der  selbe.     The  word  selbst= 

older   selbes,   of  the   same    signification,   is   the   nominative   and 

accusative   singular   neuter,   and  at  the  same  time  the  genitive 

singular  masculine  and  neuter,  of  the  same  word.     In  MHG.  the 

adjective    is    inflected    sometimes   strong,   sometimes   weak,  and 

follows  the  noun  with  which  it  is  connected  in  gender,  number,  and 

case  ;  cf  im  selbem,  ir  selber,  stn  selbes,  etc.     Now  when  the  forms 

received  in  MHG.  have  forced  themselves  into  places  where  others 

properly  belong,  this  must  result  from  the  fact  that  the  word  is  no 

longer  felt  as  an  adjective.    Since,  in  the  word  selber,  nothing  more 

was  felt  than  the  function  of  an  energetic  identification,  the  form 

came  to  be  employed  in  every  case  where  such  identification  had 

^  Cf.  Brugmann,  Ein problem  der  homerischen  text-critik,  p.  lig  sqi^. 
'[Cf.  VoUer,  lauter,  etc.] 


to  be  affirmed.  The  case  of  the  dialectic  halber  is  parallel :  die 
nacht  ist  halber  hin,  es  ist  halber  eins ;  and  it  is  the  same  with 
einander,  instead  of  which  we  find  in  OHG.  regularly  inflected  :  ein 
under  an,  ein  andermo,  etc.  In  MHG.  it  was  still  possible  to  say 
beider  des  vater  und  des  sunes  in  which  phrase  des  vater  und  des 
sunes  stands  strictly  speaking  in  an  appositional  relation  to  beider. 
More  commonly,  however,  we  find  beide,  des  vater  und  des  sunes. 
We  thus  find  the  nominatival  form  beide  crystallised,  as  the  origin 
of  the  construction  presents  itself  no  more  to  our  consciousness  and 
the  function  of  beide — und  approaches  the  modern  German  sowohl 
— als  auch.  In  Latin  the  nominative  quisque  coupled  with  the 
reflexive  pronoun  and  the  possessive  which  corresponds  to  it  has 

« Sail.  Jug.   passed  beyond  its  proper  area,  cf.  e.g.,  multis  sibi  quisque  iinperium. 

Roby's  Lat.  petentibus.  *  In  Nonius  we  find  praesente  testibus  for  prmsentibus,  in 
Terence    absente  nobis -.Hrom  this  we  must  acknowledge  that  the 

t  C/.  Roby  ..... 

ii-  los.  participial  forms  in  question  have  approached  the  characteristics  of 
prepositions.  Combinations  like  agediim  conferte,  agedum,  creemus, 
etc.,  result  from  the  fact  that  age  was  no  longer  felt  as  the  second 
person  singular  imperative,  but  merely  as  a  general  cry  of  exhorta- 
tion. Correspondingly  we  find  in  Greek  cir^e  used  before  a  plural, 
and  again  etVe,  j>epe,  Ihov;'^  further,  in  Latin  we  find  cave  dirumpatis 
(Pla.utMS,  Poen.  Prol.,  ii6),  etc. ;  in  ordinary  German  conversation 
we  hear  sometimes  such  expressions  as  warte  mal,  even  where  the 
words  are  addressed  to  several  persons,  or  to  one  only  who  is  com- 
monly addressed  by  Sie.  In  the  older  stages  of  NHG.  we  find  sieht 
employed  even  where  more  than  one  are  accosted ;  the  French 
voici  and  voild.  are  completely  crystallised.  In  late  Greek  &<^€kov 
and  d)(^e\6  were  employed,  without  any  consideration  of  number  or 

.  person  as  simple  conjunctions.     The  German  nur  took  its  origin 

from  enw(Bre  {es  zvdre  denn).     Thus  this  enwcere  has  forced  its  way 
in  the  place  of  enwcerest,  enwceren,  eni,  enstn,  etc. 

'  Brugmann,  u.s.,  p.  124. 


382.  It  is  a  similar  process  when  in  late  mhg.  the  word  sicli 
dependent  on  a  preposition,  makes  its  way  also  into  sentences 
in  which  the  subject  is  the  first  or  the  second  person.^  This 
results  from  the  fact  that  an  expression  like  iiber  sick  or  unter 
sick  is  no  longer  analysed,  but  is  apprehended  as  =  upwards 
or  downwards ;  cf  the  NHG.  expressions  vor  sick  gekn  and  an  und 
filr  sick.  And  hence  these  combinations  are  also  employed  in 
cases  where  they  cannot  be  referred  to  the  subject,  but  only  to 
an  oblique  case  ;  cf.  keb  kinten  iiber  sick  das  glas  ('  raise  your  glass 
high,'  Uhland,  Volkslieder).  The  same  crystallisation  has  occurred 
in  such  expressions  as  seiner  zeit ;  cf.  e.g.,  die  jugend  ist  unterneh- 
mend,  wir  sind  es  seiner  zeit  auch  gewesen  (HacklANDER).  Cor- 
respondingly we  find  in  Latin  suo  loco,  sua  sponte,  suo  nomine.  In 
Roman  jurists  we  find  combinations  like  si  sui  juris  sumus.^  In 
ON.  a  middle  and  passive  is  formed  by  the  aid  of  the  reflexive. 
In  this  case  the  -sk,  later  -z,  which  goes  back  to  -sik,  and  could 
originally  be  applied  to  the  third  person  only,  is  transferred  in 
the  first  place  to  the  second,  and  afterwards  to  the  first  person  ; 
e.g.  Mkomz,  instead  of  an  older  lukomk  {  =  *luko-mik);  the  ^^  was 
no  longer  apprehended  in  its  original  meaning,  but  merely  as  a 
sign  of  the  middle  or  passive.  In  very  many  Upper  and  Middle 
German  dialects  the  word  sick  is  also  employed  as  a  reflexive 
for  the  first  person  plural ;  occasionally  indeed  for  the  second 
person  as  well.  The  ordinary  practice  of  confining  its  use  to  the 
first  person  plural  is  probably  to  be  explained  by  the  fact  that 
by  this  restriction  the  process  of  transference  is  rendered  more 
easy,^  owing  to  the  formal  correspondence  of  the  verbal  form  with 

'  Cf.  Brugmann,  u.s. 

2  [And  sui  heredes ;  Roby,  ii.  p.  492-  The  same  is  seen  in  sein  Tag,  cf.  Goethe's 
Egmont,  Wenn  ich  Schlage  was  gegeben  hatte,  ware  sein  Tag  nichts  aus  mir  geworden 
Ac,  and  cf.  other  phrases  like  Sein  Thor  kenntjede  Kuh  (Sprichwort).] 

3  The  view  put  •forth  by  Brugmann,  u.s.,  p.  123,  that  this  stcA  has  risen  from  a 
form  unsich  seems  to  me  untenable,  because  the  form  unsich  had  already  disappeared 
before  this  application  of  sich  appears  at  all.  The  wide  area  covered  by  the  phenomenon 
forbids  our  assuming  with  Weinhold,  Bair.  Gram.  §  359,  and  Schuchardt,  Slawodeutsches, 
p.  107,  ary  Slavonic  influence. 

256         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

the  third  person  plural.     In   the  Bavarian  dialect  the  possessive 
sein  is  made  to  refer  to  the  feminine,  and  to  the  plural  as  well ; 
cf.  Schmeller,  p.  198. 
Influence  c.         383.  Plautus*  [Catullus,   and  other  poets],  employ  the  words 

change  of 

meaning      j)erire,  deperire,  and  demori  in  the  sense  of  to  be  mortally  enamoured 

upon  con- 

struction.  of,  with  the  accusative ;  in  the  same  way  Vergil,  Horace,  and  other 
►  c/.  Cure,  authors  employ  ardere  in  the  sense  of  to  be  inflamed  by  love  for. 
It  is  plain  that  the  construction  of  these  words  is  influenced  by 
that  of  amare,  because  their  metaphorical  use  approximates  to  the 
proper  use  of  amo.  We  may  fairly  conclude  that  this  signification 
of  these  words  was  already  somewhat  obsolete,  at  least  in  the 
language  of  the  poets.  For  if  their  full  significance  had  been 
still  completely  appreciated,  it  is  probable  that  no  such  change 
in  the  construction  would  have  set  in.  Still,  in  a  case  like  this,  we 
have  always  to  set  something  down  to  the  account  of  an  intentional 
audacity  of  language  on  the  part  of  the  poet.  It  is  different  with 
the  ordinary  language  of  prose.  In  this  case,  too,  it  frequently 
occurs  that  a  word  changes  the  method  of  its  construction  which 
should  characterise  it  according  to  its  fundamental  meaning,  for 
another  which  does  not  suit  this,  since  it  is  influenced  either  by  a 
particular  single  word  or  by  a  group  of  words  to  which  it  has 
in  the  course  of  time  approximated  its  meaning.  In  this  case  the 
change  of  construction  is  an  infallible  mark  of  the  disappearance 
of  the  fundamental  meaning.  Especially  often  do  we  find  thus 
indicated  the  detachment  from  the  concrete  perception  which 
originally  lay  at  its  root. 

384.  We  find  many  compounds  with  adverbs  of  place  which 
are  especially  instructive  for  this  process  of  detachment.  For 
instance,  the  preposition  in  belongs  originally  to  the  words 
cinwirken  and  einwirkung ;  and  this  use  was  common  up  to  the 
last  century  ;  cf  sobald  kunst  und  wissenschaft  in  das  leben  eimvirkt 


(Goethe)  ;  durch  die  einwirkung  in  gewisse  werkzeuge  (Garve). 
These  words  are  at  the  present  day  connected  with  auf,  and  this 
proves  that  the  feeling  for  the  sensuous  perception,  to  which  the 
ein  points,  has  disappeared.  The  same  change  has  made  its 
appearance  in  the  case  of  einfluss  ;  cf.  gesundheit  ist  ein  gut,  welches 
in  alles  einfluss  hat  (Garve)  ;  and  this  was  the  general  usage  in  the 
last  century  {in  and  aufvi&re.  formerly  connected  with  einfliessen  'to 
have  influence,'  as  well) ;  einschrdnken,  cf.  es  hat  Idngst  aufgehort 
in  die  engen  grenzen  eingeschrdnkt  zu  sein  (LesSING),  etc. ;  eindruck, 
cf.  die  ndhe  des  schonen  kindes  musste  wol  in  die  seek  des  jungen 
mannes  einen  so  lebhaften  eindruck  machen  (Goethe).  More 
sensuous  still  is  um  durch  das  grosse  dieses  todes  einen  unauslosch- 
lichen  eindruck  seiner  selbst  in  das  herz  seiner  Spartaner  zu  graben 
(Schiller)  ;  though  it  already  appears  with  auf  in  Lessing. 
Abneigung gegen,  or,  as  the  older  writers  also  express  it,  vor,  can- 
not have  been  an  original  usage,  but  von  only,  which  Sanders  cites 
Heine  alone  to  prove.  The  earliest  instance  of  nachdenken  iiber 
seems  to  occur  in  Schiller's  Don  Karlos  ;  in  other  cases  the  simple 
dative  (properly  dependent  on  nacli),  is  common ;  e.g.  um  ihren 
brie  fen  nachzudenken  (NiCOLAI).*  *[c/  verna- 

•^  ^  leken,  U.S. 

385.  If  we  now  say  in  German  sei  mir  willkommen  in  meinem  fg^,"??.^' 
hause,  it  is  evident  that  the  last-named  component  pirt  of  the  word 

is  no  longer  apprehended  as  a  participle  of  kommen.  As  long  as 
it  was  so  apprehended  the  denotation  of  a  certain  direction  was 
also  understood ;  e.g.  willekomen  her  in  Guntheres  lant  (NlBE- 

386.  Sucsh  an  expression  as  quin  conscendimus  equos  is,  properly 
speaking,  why  do  we  not  mount  our  horses  f  but  is  understood  as 

let  us  mount  our  horses ;f and  hence  it  follows  that  we  are  abletcfRoby, 

I^.Gr.  u.  20$, 

to  employ  even  after  quin  an  imperative  or  so-called  adhortative 
subjunctive  ;  e.g.  quin  age  istud,  quia  experiamur.     Correspondingly 


the  MHG.  wan  fiirchtent  si  den  stap  (warum  fiirchten  sie  nicht  den 
stab),  approximates  to  the  sense  of  mogen  sie  den  stab  fiirchten  ; 
as  a  consequence  of  this  we  find  after  wan  the  ordinary  subjunctive 
preterite  employed  in  optative  clauses  without  any  introductory 
conjunction ;  cf.  wan  hcete  ich  iuwer  kunst.  It  seems  probable 
that  the  OF.  usage  of  car  {  =  quare)  connected  with  the  con- 
ditional and  the  imperative  is  to  be  thus  explained  ;  cf.  DlEZ, 
iii.  214. 

387.  The  Greek  ovkovv  is  originally  =  '  not  therefore,'  and 
serves  to  introduce  a  question  to  which  an  affirmative  answer 
is  expected.  The  sentences  introduced  by  ovkovv  come,  however, 
gradually  to  be  apprehended  as  direct  positive  assertions.  And 
thus  the  particle  has  retained  merely  the  function  of  marking 
consequence,  and  it  is  introduced  in  sentences  which  can  no 
longer ,  be  apprehended  as  interrogative  sentences,  e.g.  coupled 
with  the  imperative ;  cf,  ovkovv  a-Trdyaye  fie  avOi,<;  e?  rov  l3iov 
(Lucian).^  The  Sanskrit  na-nu  shows  a  precisely  parallel  develop- 
ment. It  serves,  in  the  first  instance,  like  nonne,  to  introduce 
interrogative  sentences ;  but  then,  as  such  interrogative  sentences 
are  transformed  into  affirming  sentences,  it  may  be  translated 
by  surely,  and  it  occurs  next  in  petition  sentences ;  cf.  nanu 
ucyat&m  =  it  seems  to  be  said. 

388.  The  accusative  with  an  infinitive  could  originally  stand 
only  in  connexion  with  a  transitive  verb,  as  long  as  the  accusative 
of  the  subject  was  felt  as  directly  dependent  from  the  finite  verb  ; 
cf  Chapter  XVI.  After,  however,  the  interpretation  of  it  had  so 
far  changed,  that  the  accusative  and  infinitive  was  looked  upon 
as  a  dependent  sentence,  and  the  accusative  as  its  subject,  it  was 
possible  to  extend  the  construction  far  beyond  its  original  limits. 
Thus  in  Latin,  too,  verbs  are  construed  with  the  accusative  and 

^  Cf.  Kuhner's  Griech.  Gram.,  II.  i.  p.  717. 


infinitive  which  cannot  have  any  accusative  of  the  object  connected 
with  them,  as  gaudere,  dolere;  and  further,  we  find  combinations 
h'ke  magna  in  spe  sum,  spem  habeo,  etc.  In  very  many  cases  it 
then  happens  that  the  accusative  and  infinitive  is  employed  as  the 
subject ;  thus  after  such  words  as  licet,  accidit,  constat,  etc.,  after /aj, 
ius  est,  etc.,  and  in  the  case  of  passives  with  the  nomijiative  and 
infinitive  ;  cf.  nonmihi  videtur  ad  beate  vivendum  satis  passe  virtidem. 
(Cicero)  ;  Volscos  et  Aeguos  extra  fines  exisse  ajfertur  (LiVY). 
Then  the  accusative  and  infinitive  construction  passes  into  sentences 
which  depend  on  another  accusative  and  infinitive.  Thus,  in  the 
first  place,  it  passes  into  relative  sentences  loosely  connected  ;  e.g. 
niunduin  censent  regi  numine  deoruin,  ex  quo  illud  natura  consequi 
(Cicero)  ;*cf  Draeger,  §  447,  i.f  Further,  it  passes  into  sentences  1^'"' '"'''' 

t  Cf.  Cic.  de 

of  comparison :  e.g.  ut  /eras  quasdam  nulla  mitescere  arte,  sic  Am.  x.,  §  34- 
immitem  ejus  viri  animum  esse  (Liw) ;  addit  etiam  se  prius 
occisuin  iri  ab  eo  quam  me  violatum.  iri  (CiCERO)  ;  cf  Draeger, 
448,  I  ;  453,  2.  It  passes  also  into  indirect  questions  :  e.g.  quid  sese 
inter  pacatos  facere,  cur  in  Italiam  non  revehi  (Livy)  ;Jcf  Draeger, 
450.     It  even  passes  into  temporal  and  causal  sentences :  crimina 

§  Ep.  97, 13. 

vitanda  esse,  quia  vitari  metus  non  posse  (Seneca)  ;§cf.  Draeger, 
448,  2,  3.  A  corresponding  extension  is  met  with  in  Greek.  The 
custom  of  having  the  subject  of  the  infinitive  in  the  form  of  the 
accusative  conduces  in  this  instance,  too,  to  the  employment  of 
this  case  by  the  side  of  the  infinitive  where  the  latter  is  turned 
into  a  substantive  by  the  article,  in  whatever  case  this  may  be ; 
cf.  atTto?  Tov  v(,K7)6rivai  tow  AaKeSaifioviovi;,  Sta  to  ttjv  ttoXiv 
■^prjcrdai,  imp  tov  TavTa  firj  yiyveadai. 

^8q.  If  two  methods  of  construction  partially  cover  each  other  construction 

•^    ^  ^  ■'  ^     differently 

in  their  functional  use,  it  is  possible,  in  the  case  of  many  tradi-  nnderstooj 


tional  syntactic  combinations,  for  an  uncertainty  to  arise  as  to  influence  of 

a  synonyme, 

which  of  the  two  is  the  fundamental  one.      In  this  way  there 


arises  a  new  interpretation  of  the  combination,  which  turns  the 
activity  of  analogy  into  another  channel. 

390.  A  genitive  'dependent  on  a  substantive  has  a  function 
similar  to  that  of  the  attributive  adjective.  In  combinations  like 
Hamburger  rauchfleisch  or  Kieler  sprotten,  the  genitive  of  the 
designation  of  the  inhabitants  is  at  the  base  as  the  first  member ; 
but  it  is  more  in  accordance  with  the  instinct  of  language  to 
apprehend  it  as  an  adjective  derived  from  the  name  of  the  place ; 
in  any  case  we  refer  it  directly  to  the  place  and  not  to  the 
inhabitants.  No  doubt  the  absence  of  inflexion  proves  that  we 
have  no  true  adjective  before  us.  On  the  other  hand,  the  way  in 
which  the  article  is  employed  in  the  connexion  {das  Hamburger 
rauchfleisch)  shows  that  the  genitive  is  not  felt  any  longer  as 
such ;  for  the  position  of  a  genitive  between  the  article  and  the 
substantive  has  now  become  an  impossibility.  OHG.  had  no 
possessive  pronoun  of  the  feminine  and  the  plural  sie.  It  em- 
ployed, instead  of  this,  the  genitive  of  this  pronoun,  ira,  iro. 
In  MHG.,  too,  we  have  the  genitive  ir :  but  here  and  there  the 
usage  has  set  in  of  apprehending  it  as  an  adjective,  and  declining 
it  adjectivally.  This  use  has  become  general  in  NHG.,  and  this 
is  the  origin  of  the  German  possessive  pronoun  ihr.  It  seems 
probable  that  the  contact  of  the  genitive  with  the  attributival 
adjective  was  the  occasion  of  employing  it  after  the  model  of 
the  adjective  predicatively ;  cf  er  ist  des  todes,  reines  herzens,  so 
sind  wir  des  herrn  (Luther),  etc.  This  use  belongs  most 
probably  to  the  IE.  fundamental  language. 




IF  we  collect  and  arrange  all  the  words  and  forms  which  contain  J^^  s^™?- 
ing  of  ety- 
the  same  root  according  to  the  original  laws  of  formation,  moiogicaiiy 


as  they  are  found  by  the  dissecting  process  proper  to  the  older  "'ords 

diverges,  in 

comparative  grammar,  we  obtain  a  system  compounded  of  many  the  course  of 

time,  from 

members,  or  a  larger  system  of  smaller  systems  which  may  again  that  required 

by  their 

on  their  side  consist  of  systems.     Even  a  single  IE.  verb  in  itself  formation, 


represents  a  highly  complicated  system.     From  the  verbal  stem  analogical 

creation  on  a 

are  developed  different  stems  marking  tense  ;  from  each  tense-stem  new  basis, 
different  moods ;  and  then,  and  not  till  then,  are  the  different 
persons  in  both  genders  developed.  It  is  the  endeavour  of 
analytical  grammar  to  separate  what  by  its  origin  is  closely,  re- 
lated from  what  is  related  only  in  a  further  degree ;  always  to 
distinguish  between  root-word  and  derivative ;  to  avoid  all  sudden 
leaps  and  bounds,  and  not  to  apprehend  anything  as  a  direct 
derivation  which  is  only  a  derivation  from  a  derivation.  But  that 
which,  judged  from  its  point  of  view,  is  an  error  in  the  judgment 
formed  as  to  word-  and  form-composition,  is  a  thing  to  which 
linguistic  consciousness  is  extraordinarily  liable.  It  is  unavoid- 
able that  the  way  in  which  the  etymologically  connected  forms 
group  themselves  together  in  the  mind  of  the  members  of  any 
linguistic  community  should,  at  a  later  period,  prove  quite  other 



than  when  the  forms  first  tooTc  shape,  and  the  result  of  this  is 
that  the  formation  by  analogy  as  well,  which  reposes  upon  irregular 
grouping  of  this  kind,  diverges  from  the  original  laws  of  formation. 
Secondary  coincidence  of  sound  and  signification  also  often  adds 
its  influence.  The  importance  of  the  part  played  by  this  process 
in  the  history  of  language  may  be  shown  by  a  list  of  examples. 
Examples  392.  There  are  in  NHG.  a  large  number  of  masculine  names  of 

action  traditionally  bequeathed  to  us  side  by  side  with  strong  verbs 
corresponding  therewith  ;  cf  fall— fallen,  fang—fangen,  schlag — 
scklagen,  streit — streiten,  lauf — laufen,  befehl  (OHG.  Hfelh) — befehlen. 
If  we  go  back  to  the  original  principle  of  the  formation,  we  shall  be 
compelled  to  say  that  neither  the  noun  is  derived  from  the  verb  nor 
the  verb  from  the  noun,  but  both  are  immediately  derived  from  the 
root.  We  have  further  certain  cases  in  which,  side  by  side  with  a  noun 
of  the  agent,  there  stands  a  weak  verb  derived  from  it ;  cf  hass — 
hassen,  krach  —  krachen,  schall —  schallen,  ranch  —  rauchen,  zil — 
zilen,  mord — morden,  hunger — hungern.  In  NHG.  these  two  classes 
cannot  be  kept  apart,  and  chiefly  for  this  reason,  that  the  difference 
of  the  verbal  terminations  in  the  present  has  entirely  disappeared. 
The  words  schlag  zxid.  hass  seem  to  bear  a  precisely  similar  relation- 
ship to  schlagen  and  hassen ;  and  the  usage  is  now  to  form  other 
nouns  similarly  connected  with  other  verbs,  irrespective  of  the  class 
of  conjugation  to  which  they  may  belong,  simply  by  omission 
of  the  termination ;  cf  betrag,  ertrag,  vortrag,  betreff,  verbleib, 
begehr,  erfolg,  verfolg,  belang,  betracht,  branch,  gebrauch,  verbratich, 
besuch,  versuch,  verkehr,  vergleich,  bereich,  Schick,  bericht,  drger,  etc. 
\tn'£L  '^^  MHG.  we  have  side  by  side  with  the  substantive  gtt  a  -veth  gitesen* 
^°"'^'  derived  from  it.  The  latter  in  late  MHG.  develops  regularly  into 
«  geitzen,  geizen  ;  and  from  this  is  formed  the  substantive  geiz,  which 

thrusts  aside  the  older  form  geit. 

393.  Where  a  noun  and  a  verb  of  similar  signification  stand 


side  by  side,  it  is  inevitable  that  the  derivative  formed  from  the  one 
should  proceed  to  form  relations  with  the  other  as  well,  so  that  it 
may  seem  to  the  instinct  of  language  to  be  formed  from  the  latter 
as  well  as  from  the  former ;  and  this  relationship  deviating  from 
the  original  condition  may  then  give  an  impulse  to  new  formations. 
The  German  suffix  -ig  (OHG.  -ag  and  -ig)  serves  originally  merely 
to  mark  derivatives  from  nouns.  But  words  like  gldubig,  streitig, 
geldufig  stand,  as  far  as  their  form  and  signification  go,  in  just  as 
near  relation  to  glauben,  streiten,  laufen  as  to  glaube,  streit,  lauf; 
while  others,  like  irrig,  stand  in  even  a  nearer  relation  to  the  verb 
in  question,  because  the  substantive  irre  in  the  development  of  its 
meaning  has  not  proceeded  in  a  parallel  path  with  the  ad- 
jective ;  in  the  case  of  others  like  gekorig,  abwendig,  the  substantive 
which  lies  at  the  base  of  the  word  (mhg.  h6re)  has  been  lost,  or  at 
any  rate  is  no  longer  in  ordinary  use.  In  the  same  way  we  have 
next  a  quantity  of  adjectives  formed  straight  from  verbs ;  cf. 
erbiettg{as  against  the  noun-derivative  erbotig),  ehrerbietig,freigebig, 
crgiebig,  ausfindig  (this  word  seems,  however,  formed  after  the  mhg. 
fundec),  zuldssig,  rilhrig,  wackelig,  ddmmerig,  stotterig:  the  word 
abhdngig  too  must,  according  to  its  signification,  be  referred  not  to 
hang,  abhang,  but  only  to  abhangen.  The  circumstances  are  similar 
in  the  case  of  the  adjectives  in  -isch,  of  which  at  least  the  words 
neckisch,  miirrisck,  and  wetterwendisch  must  be  apprehended  as 
derivatives  from  verbs,  after  the  model  of  such  words  as  neidisch, 
spdttisch,  argwohnisch,  etc.  The  modern  German  suffix  -er  (OHG. 
-dri,  -eri,  MHG.  -cere,  -er),  which  at  the  present  day  serves  as  the 
general  method  of  forming  nouns  of  the  agent  from  verbs,  was 
originally  applied  only  to  such  formations  as  we  have  still  in 
burger,  miiller,  schuler,  and  many  other  words.  In  Gothic  the  words 
bokareis,  '  a  scribe,'  from  boia  (in  the  plural '  book ')  ;  daimonareis, 
-  one  possessed,'  from  haijiaiv  ;  motareis, '  publican,'  from  mota, '  toll ;' 


vullareis,  '  cloth-fuller,'  from  vulla,  '  wool ;'  liu^areis,  '  singer,'  from 
an  assumed  word  */««f  =  OHG.  leod,  nhg.  lied.     In  the  same  way 
we  shall  have  to  derive  the  words  laisareis,  '  teacher,'  and  sokareis, 
'  inquirer,'  not  from  the  verbs  laisjan  and  sokjan,  '  to  seek '  {sucken), 
but  from    assumed   substantives    *laisa,  =  OHG.   lira,   NHG.   lehre, 
[English  '  lore '],  and  *soka  =  MHG.  suoche.      These  two   last-men- 
tioned verbs,  however,  exhibit  already  the  possibility  of  bringing 
the  formation  into  connexion  with  a  verb.     By  the  side  of  liu\areis 
stands  also  liu^on,  'to  sing.'    Thus,  from  association  with  instances 
like  these,  the  derivations  from  verbs  begin  in  OHG.  already.     We 
can  see  that  the  nominal  derivation  is  the  original,  especially  from 
such  instances  as   zuhtdri  'educator,'  from   zuht,   and    not   from 
ziuhan  ;  and  again  notnumftdri,  '  robber.'    In  the  cases  in  which  the 
root-vowel  of  the   nominal  derivative   does    not   agree  with   the 
present  of  the  verb,  it  often  happens  that  a  new  verbal  formation 
appears  beside  it ;  and  both  formations  have  maintained  themselves 
side  by  side  down  to  the  NHG.  time ;  cf  ritter — reiter,  schnitter — 
Schneider,    ndhter — ndher,    mdhder — mdher,    sdnger — singer   (OHG. 
only   sangdri),    Schilter    (as    a    proper    name)  =  MHG.    schiltcere 
('painter') — schilderer.      The   abstracts  in    OHG.    ending   in  -ida 
(Gothic  -?f«)  seem  to  have  been  originally  formed  from  adjectives 
only,  and  from  verbs  as  a  result  of  secondary  relation  only ;   cf 
kisuohhida  with  kisuohhen,  pihaltida  with  pihaltan  after  chundida 
— chunden — chund,  etc. 

394.  As  it  is  in  derivation  so  is  it  in  composition.  The  gradual 
process  of  change  of  the  first  portion  of  a  nominal  compound  into 
a  verbal,  and  the  new  formations  called  into  existence  thereby,  have 
been  treated  in  great  detail  by  OSTHOFF.^  Thus  for  instance,  OHG. 
waltpoto  '  procurator,'  sceltwort,  betohus,  spilonian,  fastatag,  wartman, 

•  Das  verbum  in  der  nominalcomposition  im  deutschen,  griechischen,  slavischen  und 
romanischen.     Jena,  1878. 


spurihunt,  erbereht,  which  must  be  allowed  to  contain  the  nouns 
wait  {giwali),  scelta,  beta,  spil,  fasta,  warta,  spurt,  erbi  enter  into 
direct  relationship  with  the  verbs  waltan,  sceltan,  betdn,  spildn,  fasten, 
warten,  spurien,  erben;^  and  from  these  and  similar  components 
arises  the  class  which  has  become  so  common  in  NHG.  of  com 
pounds  with  a  verbal  noun,  forming  the  first  portion  of  the  com- 
pound, as  esslust,  trinksucht,  schreibfeder,  schreibfaul,  etc.  Under 
this  head  come  especially  many  compounds  with  -bar,  -lick,  -sam, 
-haft),^  which,  however,  from  the  standpoint  of  linguistic  instinct 
are  rather  to  be  regarded  as  derivations,  and  to  be  ranged  parallel 
to  the  formations  with  -ig  and  -isck  mentioned  above ;  cf  words 
like  wdhlbar,  unvertilgbar,  unbeschreiblich,  empfindlich,  empfindsam, 
naschhaft.  The  transition  shows  itself  with  special  clearness  in 
the  case  of  words  like  streitbar,  wandelbar,  vereinbar.  Streitbar 
may  just  as  well  be  referred  to  streit  as  to  streiten  ;  but  unbestreit- 
bar  can  only  be  referred  to  bestreiten.  In  MHG.  wandelbcere  is 
referred  straight  to  wandel ;  and  as  this  word  signifies  commonly 
'  a  spot,'  the  word  commonly  signifies  accordingly  '  marked  by  a 
spot ;'  in  NHG.  on  the  contrary  we  find  wandelbar,  unwandelbar 
wholly  attracted  to  the  meaning  of  the  verb  wandeln.  In  mhg. 
we  have  an  adjective  einbcere  (emtrackttg '  concordsint'),  conceivable 
as  wholly  unrelated  to  the  verb. 

395.  The  case  is  very  frequent  that  a  derivative  from  another  de-  Fusion  of 

....  ....  ....  .  ,,  ,  two  suffixes. 

.nvative  is  placed  m  direct  relationship  to  the  root- word,  by  which 

process  it  then  happens  that  really  direct  derivatives  are  produced 

with  the  fusion  of  two  suffixes  into  a  single  one.     This  explains, 

for  instance,  the  rise  of  the  NHG.  suffixes  -mss,  -ner,  -ling.      In 

Gothic  there  still  survived  a  distinct  suffix  -assus,  ufar-assus  (over- 

ness  =  abundance).      This  is,  however,  most  commonly  employed 

for  formations  from  verbs  in  -inon  ;  e.g.  gudjinassus  {priesteramt, 

1  To  rule,  to  reproach,  to  pray,  to  play,  to  fast,  to  watch,  to  track,  to  inherit. 
'  Cf.  Osthoff,  ut  sup.,  p.  Ii5  sqq. 


'  post  of  priest ')  from  gudjinon,  '  to  perform  priestly  functions.'  As 
soon  as  this  word  was  referred  directly  to  gudja,  '  a  priest,'  -nassus 
must  have  been  felt  as  a  suffix.  Further,  an  n  was  found  in  such 
formations  as  ibnassus  from  ibns  {eben,  '  even '),  and  in  derivations 
from  participles  such  as  OHG.  farloran-issa  (forlorn-ness).  It  has 
thus  come  to  pass  that  the  West  Teutonic  dialects  always,  with  the 
exception  of  a  few  antiquated  fragments,  exhibit  an  n  coalescing 
with  the  suffix.  The  formations  in  -ner  start  from  noun-stems  which 
contain  an  n  ;  cf.  gdrtner  (mhg.  gartencere),  liigner  (MHG.  lugencere 
from  lilgene  by  the  side  of  liige),  hafner  (MHG.  havenczre),  wagner, 
or  from  verbs  terminating  in  OHG.  in  -inon ;  cf.  redner  (OHG. 
redinari  from  redinon),  gleissner  (MHG.  gelichsencsre  from  gelichsenen). 
When  then  liigner,  for  instance,  is  referred  to  liege,  and  redner  to 
rede,  reden,  the  suffix  -ner  arises,  which  we  find  in  bildner  (as  early 
as  the  fourteenth  century,  bildencsre,  but  earlier  still  bildcere), 
harfner  (MHG.  harpfcere),  s'dldner  (late  MHG.  soldencere,  earlier  soldier). 
In  kiinstler  (MHG.  kunster)  -ler  also  appears  as  a  suffix,  for  we  refer 
it  directly  to  kunst,  because  the  verb  kiinsteln,  from  which  it  strictly 
speaking  comes,  is  confined  to  a  more  special  meaning.  The  suffix 
-ling  (in  pflegling,  zogling,  etc.)  proceeds  from  formations  like  the 
OHG.  ediling  '  the  noble '  from  edili  or  adal ;  chumiling  (NHG.  in 
abkdmmling,  ankdmmling)  connected  with  {uo-)ckumilo.  Thus  be- 
tween Jung  and  jungilinc  there  must  probably  have  stood  once  a 
diminutive  form  or  *jungilo. 

396.  The  NHG.  verbs  in  -igen  originated  in  derivatives  from 
adjectives  in  -ig.  MHG.  einegen,  huldegen,  leidegen,  notegen,  manec- 
valtegen,  schedegen,  schuldegen,  doubtless  arise  from  einec,  huldec, 
leidec,  ndtec,  schadec,  schuldec,  etc. ;  but  the  nhg.  vereinigen,  ' 
beleidigen,  beschuldigen,  are  rather  to  be  directly  referred  to  ein,  kid, 
and  schuld:  and  in  the  case  of  huldigen  and  schddigen,  no  other 
reference  is  possible  than  to  huld  and  schade,  because  the  adjectives 


that  forwarded  the  transition  have  disappeared,  and  ndtigen  in  the 
same  way,  because  ndtig  no  longer  corresponds  in  meaning.  Thus 
then  others  appear  directly  derived  from  the  substantive,  such  as 
vereidigen,  befehligen,  befriedigen,  einkdndigen,  beherzigen,  silndigcn, 
beschdftigen,  or  from  simple  adjectives,  as  besckonigen,  senfiigeti, 
genehmigen.  The  verbs  ending  in  -em  and  -eln  arose  from  a 
nucleus  of  derivations  from  nouns  ending  in  OHG.  in  -ar  and  -at 
{-ul,  -il),  the  OHG.  spurildn,  {investigare)  for  instance,  going  back 
not  to  the  verb  spurien,  but  to  a  presumable  adjective  *spuril 
(  =  OHN.  spurall)  ;  but  they  are  at  the  present  day  derived  simply 
from  more  simple  verbs,  cf  folgern,  rduchern  (late  mho.  rouckern, 
more  anciently  roucheri),  erschilttern  (MHG.  even  in  the  sixteenth 
century  erschiiiten),  zogern  (from  MHG.  zogeii),  schiltteln,  Idcheln, 
schmeicheln  (from  MHG.  smeichen,  etc.).  In  the  same  way 
derivatives  from  nouns  like  dugeln,  fr'dsteln,  ndseln,  frommeln, 
klugelii,  krdnkeln,  etc.,  have'  been  formed. 

397.  In  MHG.  many  adjectives  form  an  adverb  in  -Ikhe,  cf. 
frdltche,  grozltche,  lAterlicke,  eigenliche,  vermezzenltche,  sinnecltclte, 
einvaltecliche.  Forms  like  this  are  of  course  derived  in  the  first 
instance  from  adjectival  compounds.  But  as  the  adverb  of  the 
simple  adjective  becomes  obsolete,  a  direct  relation  sets  in  between 
the  adverb  of  the  compound  and  the  simple  adjective.  In  fact,  the 
development  proceeds  even  further,  as  after  the  analogy  of 
grimmecltche,  statecltche,  etc.,  which  are  referred  directly  to  grim 
or  grimme  and  stcate,  armecltche,  miltecltche,  snellecltche,  etc.,  are 
formed,  although  no  such  word  as  armec,  etc.,  is  in  existence.  The 
English  adverbs  in  -ly  have  the  same  origin. 

398.  Similar  processes  clearly  came  into  operation  at  a  period 
so  early  that  we  are  unable  to  trace  their  gradual  development 
We  find  in  the  different  IE.  languages,  in  the  earliest  period  of  their 
development  known   to   us,   a   large   number   of  suffixes  whose 



phonetic  arrangement  proves  to  us  that  they  are  complications  o 
several  simple  suffixes,  and  which  probably  one  and  all  took  thei: 
origin  thus,  that  in  the  way  indicated  a  derivative  of  the  second  ha 
passed  into  a  derivative  of  the  first  degree. 

399.  Further,  the  relation  of  compounds  to  each  other  givei 
occasion  to  many  displacements  of  the  relations.  If  two  relatec 
words  enter  into  composition  with  a  similar  element,  it  is  almos' 
inevitable  that  a  direct  relation  between  the  two  compounds  musi 
arise,  and  the  consequence  follows  that  one  of  them  is  apprehendec 
no  longer  as  a  compound,  but  as  the  derivative  of  a  compound.  Con 
versely  it  is  possible  for  a  derivative  from  a  compound  to  be  placed 
in  direct  relation  to  the  corresponding  derivative  from  the  simple 
word,  and  the  result  is  that  it  is  apprehended  as  a  compound. 

400.  The  history  of  composition  in  German  gives  rich  material 
for  the  illustration  of  these  processes.  Originally  a  sharp  distinc- 
tion was  made  between  verbal  and  noun  composition.  In  verbal 
composition  prepositions  alone  are  employed,  as  the  first  members 
of  a  compound :  in  noun-composition,  noun-stems,  and  adverbs— 
at  first  only  such  as  were  identical  with  prepositions  ;  though  at  a 
later  period  others  as  well.  In  the  case  of  the  verbal  compounds, 
the  accent  falls  upon  the  second  component  portion  of  the  word ; 
in  case  of  the  noun-compounds  it  falls  upon  the  first  portion.  It  is 
thus  the  accent  which,  in  the  case  of  composition  with  particles,  is 
the  distinguishing  sign.  The  case  often  occurs  that  a  verb  and  a 
noun  of  action  connected  therewith  are  compounded  with  the  same 
particle.  There  are  numerous  cases  of  such  in  which  the  old 
relationship  is  maintained  down  to  the  present  day  in  spite  of  the 
parallelism  of  meaning  between  the  two  compounds ;  ^  cf  durch- 

1  However,  generally  speaking,  the  noun-compounds  have  a  tendency  to  follow  thf 
attraction  of  the  improper  verbal  compounds,  and  this  precisely  because  of  the  similaritj 
of  accent,  whereas  from  the  proper  ones  substantives  in  -ung  are  derived,  cf.  diirchfahra, 
=  liilrchfa/irt  —  durchfdhren  =  durchfahrung,  etc. 


brhhen  —  diirchbruch,   durchschn^iden  —  dArchschnitt,    durchstechen 

—  diirchstich,  uberblicken  —  ii'berblick,  Uberfdllen  —  ii.'berfall,  iiber- 
giben — u'bergabe,  iibernehmen  —  ubernahme,  uberschduen  —  iiber- 
schau,  ilberschldgen  —  ii'berschlag,  ubers^hen  —  il'bersickt,  uberziehen 

—  ii'berzug,  umgeken  —  4mgang,  unterhdlten  —  linterhalt,  unter- 
schHden  —  unterschied,   unterschriiben  —  icnterschrift,  widerspr^chen 

—  widerspruch,  etc.  In  other  cases  the  difference  of  accentuation 
has  produced  a  different  arrangement  of  the  sounds  of  the  particles, 
by  which  process  the  verbal  and  nominal  compound  stand  out  in 
even  sharper  contrast  to  each  other.  In  this  case  the  old  condition 
is  maintained  only  in  some  few  cases,  where  the  development  of 
meaning  has  not  been  parallel,  as  in  the  case  of  erlauben  —  urlaub, 
erteilen  —  urteil.  In  MHG.  we  have  besides  empfdngen  —  dmpfanc, 
entheizen —  dntheiz,  entld'zen  —  dntlaz,  entsdgen  — antsage,  begrdben 

—  bigraft,  besprechen  —  bisprdche,  bevd'ken  —  ibvanc,  erh^ben  — 
■Arkap,  erstd'n  —  urstende,  verbieten  —  vu'rbot  '  citation  before 
justice,'  versetzen  —  vu'rsaz  {versetzung,  'pledge'),  verziehen, — 
vii'rzoc,  etc.  In  all  these  cases  whert  the  words  have  maintained 
themselves  at  all,  we  find  this  discrepancy  cancelled  by  the 
attraction  of  the  noun-compound  to  the  verb :  empfang,  verzugy 
etc.  In  other  cases  the  unification  set  in  as  early  as  in  MHG., 
and  the  particle  ga-  (NHG.  ge-)  is  always  unaccented,  at  least 
as  early  as  in  OHG.,  if  not  at  as  early  a  date  as  in  original- 
Teutonic.  It  is  clear  that  in  this  process  the  relation  of  the 
verbal  compounds  to  the  noun-derivation  thence  formed  has 
aided  in  this  operation  (MHG.  erlcesen — erlcescere,  erlcesunge,  etc.), 
which  on  their  side  are  merely  analogical  formations  from  simple 
verbs.  There  is  the  infinitive  and  participle  as  well,  which 
in  many  cases  develop  into  simple  nouns  (cf  NHG.  behagen, 
belieben,  erbarmen,  vergniigen;  bescheiden,  erfahren,  verschieden, 
etc.,)  and   the  substantives  compounded  of  the   latter   (cf.  gewis- 

270         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

sen,  bescheidenheit,  bekanntschaft,  verivandtschaft,  erkenntniss,  etc.) 

401.  On  the  other  side,  the  principle  that  a  verbal  compound 
cannot  contain  a  noun,  is  severely  damaged,  to  the  instinct  of 
language,  by  the  fact  that  derivatives  like  handhaben,  lustwandeln, 
mutmassen,  nottaufen,  radebrechen  (proved  by  its  weak  inflexion  to 
be  a  derivative  of  MHG.  -breche),  ratschlagen,  wetteifern,  argwdhnen, 
notzucktigen,  rechtfertigen,  verwahrlosen  from  handhabe,  notzucht, 
rechtfertig,  etc.,  as  well  as  the  word  weissagen  misinterpreted  by 
popular  etymology  (OHG.  wtzagon  from  the  adjective  wtzag,  made 
into  a  substantive  wizago  '  the  prophet'),  can  equally  be  apprehended 
as  compounds.  Perhaps  the  coalition  of  syntactical  groups  into  com- 
pounds {lobsingen,  wakrsagen)  is  thereby  favoured. 

402.  Another  curious  instance  of  the  displacement  of  the 
relations  in  composition  is  found  in  numerous  examples  in  Late 
and  Middle  Latin,  and  in  the  Romance  languages.  We  have  here 
a  large  number  of  verbs  which  are  either  actually  derived  from  the 
connexion  of  a  preposition  with  its  case,  or  at  least  appear  accord- 
ing to  their  meaning  to  be  so  derived,  cf.  accorporare  {ad  corpus), 
incorporare,  accordare,  excommunicare  {ex  communione),  extcmporare 
{extemporalis  is  found  as  early  as  the  first  century  after  Christ;) 
emballer,  d^baller,  embarquer,  ddbarquer,  enrager,  affronter,  achever 
{ad  caput),  s' endimancker,  '  to  dress  one's-self  in  Sunday  costume,' 
s' enorgueillir}  The  words  formed  from  adjectives  are  connected 
with  these  which  signify  '  to  place  one's-self  in  the  condition  implied 
by  the  word ; '  such  are  affiner,  enivrer,  adoucir,  affaiblir,  ennoblir,  etc. 
The  original  basis  for  these  formations  was  twofold.  On  the  one 
hand,  there  were  derivatives  from  compound  nouns,  cf  assimilis  — 
assimilare,   concors  —  concordare,   deformis  —  deformare   (with    the 

^  More  examples  are  given  by  Arsene  Darmesteter,  Traiti  de  la  formation  des  mots 
composis  dans  la  langiie  frattfaise  {Bibliothiqzn  de  Vkole  des  hautes  itudcs.  Sciences 
philologiques  et  hisloriqttes  19)  Paris  1875,  p.  ?X)  sqq. 


meaning  of  '  to  deform '),  degener  —  degenerare,  depilis  —  depilare, 
exanimis  —  exanimare,  exheres  —  exheredare,  exossis  —  exossare, 
exsucus  —  exsucare,  demens  —  dementire,  insignis  —  insignire ; 
which  stand  to  each  other  like  sarius  —  sanare;  further,  dedecus  — 
dedecorare.  On  the  other  side  there  are  compounds  from  denomi- 
native verbs  like  accelerate  {celerare  is  poetical),  adaequare,  addensare, 
aggravare,  aggregare,  apprppinquare,  assiccare,  attenuare,  adumbrare, 
dearmare,  decalvare,  dehonorare,  depopulari,  despoliare,  detruncare, 
exhonorare,  exonerare,  innodare,  inumbrare,  investire.  Both  classes 
had  gradually  to  be  fused  with  each  other,  and  especially  in  the 
case  where  in  the  first  class  the  noun  which  lay  at  the  foundation, 
m  the  second  the  simple  noun,  became  obsolete. 


Causes  of     \  ^  7^  havc  Seen  that  it  is  an  essential  characteristic  of  the 

superfluity         \  /  \  / 

in  language.  V  V  development  of  language  that  each  individual  is  inces- 
santly engaged  in  developing  a  plurality  of  words,  forms,  ana 
constructions  of  similar  meaning}  One  source  of  this  pheno- 
I  menon  we  have  found  in  formation  by  analogy,  a  second  in 
the  converging  development  of  meaning  from  different  sides ; 
we  may  add  as  a  third  the  acceptation  of  a  foreign  word  for  a 
conception  which  is  already  represented  by  a  native  word  (cf. 
vetter — cousin,  base — cousine) ;  and  under  this  head  we  must  of 
course  range  words  borrowed  from  a  kindred  dialect.^ 

Tendency  to  404-  Inevitable,  however,  as  the  rise  of  such  superfluity  is, 
it  is  as  unable  to  maintain  itself  permanently.  Language  abhors 
superfluity.  The  objection  will  not  hold  good  that,  if  this  were  so, 
she  would  not  permit  it  to  arise.  It  is  not  the  habit  of  language 
to  adopt  precautions  against  the  occurrence  of  possible  evils,  but 
merely  to  take  measures  against  such  as  have  actually  occurred 
The  individual  speakers  who  add  new  linguistic  forms  to  those 
of  equivalent  meaning  already  existing,  take  no  account,  at  the 
moment  when  they  do  so,  of  the  latter,  since  these  are  either 
unknown  to  them,  or  at  least  do  not  enter  their  consciousness  at 

^  [Excellent  illustrations  of  this  chapter  drawn  from  the  French  are  found  ia 
Darmesteter's  La  Vie  des  mots,  Chap,  iv.,  Synonymic.'] 

2  [In  English  the  case  is  somewhat  different,  at  any  rate  as  regards  Norman-French.J 

[Ch.  XIV.]       ON  THE  DIFFERENTIATION  OF  MEANING.       273 

the  moment  in  question.  It  is,  as  a  rule,  only  other  persons  who, 
hearing  the  new  form  from  one  and  the  old  from  another  of  their 
interlocutors,  use  both  indiscriminately. 

405.  Our  assertion  applies  in  any  case  absolutely  to  the  lan- 
guage of  common  life.  It  applies  somewhat  less  to  the  language 
of  literature,  and  less  to  the  language  of  poetry  than  to  that  of 
prose.  But  the  deviation  merely  confirms  our  fundamental  view, 
that  a  need,  and  the  means  of  satisfying  that  need,  are  always 
striving  to  adjust  their  relations ;  a  process  which  equally  involves 
the  rejection  of  superfluities  and  the  filling  up,  as  far  as  may  be, 
of  lacunae.  But  the  conception  of  a  need  must  not  be  pressed 
so  as  to  comprise  merely  the  elements  absolutely  necessary  for 
social  life.  On  the  contrary,  we  have  to  take  account  of  the  whole 
sum  of  intellectual  interests,  and  of  all  the  impulses  of  poetry  and 
rhetoric.  A  cultivated  style,  which  forbids  the  too  frequent  re- 
petition of  the  same  expression,  demands  of  course  that  where 
possible  several  phrases  shall  be  available  for  the  same  thought. 
In  a  still  higher  degree,  rhythm,  rhyme,  alliteration,  and  similar 
devices  demand  the  possibility  of  choosing  among  several  phonetic 
groups  of  similar  meaning,  or  otherwise  the  constraint  which  they 
impose  would  be  felt  as  exceedingly  irksome.  The  result  is  that  the 
language  of  poetry  avails  itself  of  the  groups  of  synonyms  which 
have  gradually  grown  up,  using  them  indiscriminately,  where  the 
language  of  conversation  attaches  the  use  of  each  to  special  con- 
ditions, and  maintaining  them  where  the  language  of  conversa- 
tion gradually  restricts  itself  to  a  single  use.  This  is  indeed 
one  of  the  most  essential  factors  in  the  differentiation  of  poetical 
expression  from  that  of  prose.  It  is  easy  from  the  poetical 
language  of  every  people  and  age  ■  to  show  that  its  super- 
fluities are  closely  connected  with  the  character  of  its  poetic 
technique ;   most  easily,  it  may  be,  in  the  language  of  the  Old 


Teutonic  alliterative  poems,  which  is  remarkable  for  its  special 
■wealth  of  synonyms.  1 

406.  But  to  assume,  for  the  common  language,  the  co-existence 
through  many  centuries  of  double  forms,  or  double  words  with 
the  same  meaning,  is  opposed  to  all  experience,  and  must  decidedly 
be  designated  as  a  fault  in  method,  a  fault  which  has  very  fre- 
quently been  committed  in  the  construction  of  IE.  original  forms. 

407.  Here  again  we  must  beware  of  connecting  the  retrench- 
ment of  this  superfluity  with  any  conscious  design.  The  purpose- 
less overburdening  of  the  memory  brings  its  own  remedy. 

Elimination         408.    The  simplest  case  of  retrenchment  is  the  disappearance 

and  utilisa- 
tion, of  all  among  a  group  of  similar  forms  and  phrases,  save  one.     It 

is  easy  to  see  that  the  superfluity  characteristic  of  the  language 
generally  belongs  only  in  a  small  degree  to  the  individual.  The 
characteristic  peculiarity  of  individual  language  consists  mainly 
in  a  certain  consistency  in  the  choice  made  by  the  speaker  of  the 
different  possible  forms  of  expression  at  his  disposal.  For  if  one 
form  has  for  whatever  reason  become  more  usual  than  another — i.e. 
if  its  capacity  for  forcing  its  way  into  consciousness  under  given 
circumstances  is  greater — a  tendency  is  also  active  whereby, 
where  no  special  influences  draw  in  the  opposite  direction,  this 
preponderance  will  be  reinforced  on  every  fresh  occasion.  Now 
as  soon  as  the  great  majority  of  a  moderate-sized  linguistic  com- 
munity coincides  in  its  selection  from  any  group  of  forms,  the 
natural  result  is  again  that  the  correspondence  becomes  more  and 
more  confirmed,  and,  after  the  disappearance  of  several  generations, 
absolute.  Thus  the  different  possibilities  of  choice  form  a  main 
source  of  the  distinctions  of  dialect.  It  often  happens  also,  of 
course,  that  the  choice  leads  to  the  same  result  over  the  whole 
linguistic  area,  and  especially  in  cases  where  conditions  peculiarly 
favourable  for  one  form  occur. 

[English  readers  will  find  excellent  examples  of  this  in  Vigfusson  &  Powell's 
Corpu.  Poeticum  Boreale,  p.  447  sqq.  (Clar.  Press).] 


409.  In  addition,  however,  to  the  merely  negative  process  of  rejec- 
tion of  the  superfluous,  a  positive  process  operates  simultaneously 
towards  the  utilisation  of  superfluity  by  means  of  the  differentiation 
of  identical  meaning.  This  process  is  no  more  the  result  of  conscious 
purpose  than  the  other.  We  have  seen  that  the  different  senses  of  a 
word,  an  inflexion,  a  particle,  etc.,  have  to  be  learnt  separately  and 
successively.  Now  when  a  plurality  of  synonymous  expressions  is 
in  use,  each  of  which  comprises  several  meanings  and  applications,  it 
is  self-evident  that  the  different  meanings  cannot  appear  to  each  indi- 
vidual in  a  linguistic  community  evenly  divided  among  the  different 
expressions.  On  the  contrary,  it  will  often  happen  that  he  hears  one 
expression  earlier,  or  more  frequently  connected  with  one  meaning, 
another  expression  earlier  or  more  frequently  connected  with  another 
signification.  Should  it,  however,  happen  that  each  of  the  different 
expressions  is  familiar  to  him  in  a  special  meaning,  he  will  main- 
tain these  expressions  with  their  special  meanings,  unless  he  oe 
drifted  by  specially  powerful  impulses  to  an  opposite  course. 

410.  In  cases  where  we  cannot  trace  historically  the  single  fac-  Phonetic 


tors  of  the  development,  but  only  perceive  their  total  result,  it  often  tion  for  the 

purpose  of 

appears  as  if  a  differentiation  of  sound  had  set  in  for  the  purpose  differentiat- 
ing meaning 

of  differentiating  meaning.     And  even  now  most  philologists  do  only 


not  shrink  from  assuming  something  of  the  kind.  If  it  were  only 
to  definitely  show  the  unreasonableness  of  such  assumptions,  it  is 
very  important  to  collect  the  cases  which  fall  under  this  head  taken 
from  modern  languages  as  fully  as  possible. 

411.  What  has  been  hitherto  done  in  this  subject  relates  chiefly  woricson 


to  the  Romance  languages.  As  early  as  1683,  Nicolas  Catherinot 
published  a  work,  bearing  the  title  of  Les  Doublets  de  la  Langue 
Franqoyse,  which  collected  material  to  our  purpose.  In  fact  the 
matter  has  always  excited  interest  since  the  foundation  of  the 
scientific  grammar   of  the   Romance   languages.     Rich   material 

276         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

from  French  has  been  gathered  by  A.  Brachet,  Dictionnaire  des 
doublets  de  la  langue  frangaise,  Paris,  1868,  Supplement,  1871  ; 
from  Portuguese  by  Coelho  in  the  'Romania,'  ii.  281  sqq.; 
from  Spanish,  and,  by  the  way,  from  other  Romance  languages 
by  Caroline  Michaelis,  Romanische  wortschopfung,  Leipzig,  1876. 
M.  Breal  has  given  us  a  collection  of  Latin  doublets  in  the 
Mimoires  de  la  soci^t^  de  linguistique  de  Paris,  i.  162  sqq.  (1868).^ 
For  German  may  be  cited  O.  Behagel,  Die  neuhochdeutschen  zwil- 
lingswdrter,  Germania  23,  257  sqq.  A  small  collection  of  English 
doublets  is  to  be  found  in  Matzner,  Englische  grammatik,  i.  221 
sqq.  [Cf.  also  Skeat,  Etym.  Diet. ;  Appendix.]  C.  Michaelis  has 
some  discriminating  observations  on  differentiation  (cf  especially 
p.  41  sqq^.  She  decidedly  supports  our  view  that  the  differentia- 
tion in  sound  and  in  meaning  stand  originally  in  no  causal  con- 
nexion with  each,  other.  Behagel  (p.  292)  speaks  yet  more  positively 
on  the  subject :  '  In  living  language  there  is  no  such  thing  as  a 
voluntary  conscious  differentiation  of  form  for  the  purpose  of 
differentiation  of  meaning.'  His  own  work,  however,  deals  almost 
exclusively  with  the  phonetic  side. 
Cases  of  412.  The  material  collected  in  the  above-mentioned  works  does 


differentia-  DOt  by  any  means  entirely  fall  under  the  category  with  which  we 
have  to  deal.  It  stands  to  reason  that  all  cases  must  be  excluded 
in  which  a  loan-word  is  from  the  first  accepted  in  a  different  sense 
from  a  word  either  native  or  borrowed  at  an  earlier  period,  or 
from  another  source,  even  where  the  two  words,  when  traced  back 
far  enough,  lead  to  a  common  source.  The  French  chose  and  cause 
owe  their  origin  alike  to  the  Latin  causa ;  but  the  difference  in 
their  meaning  did  not  arise  from  any  differentiation  on  French 
•  soil ;  but  cause  was  borrowed  as  a  law-term  when  chose  had  long 

since  developed  into  the  general  meaning  of  'thing,'      It  is  the 

^  rCf.  Regnaud  Milanges,  p.  299.    (Paris,  1886);.] 


same  with  by  far  the  majority  of  doublets  in  the  Romance  [and 
English]  languages,  which,  for  this  reason,  do  not  affect  us  here.^ 
It  is  the  same  again  with  such  NHG.  words  as  legal^loyal,  pfalz — 
palast,  pulver — -puder,  spital — kdtel,  etc.  \regal — royal,  orison — ora- 
tion, penance — penitence.  For  a  fuller  list  see  Morris's  Historical 
Outlines  of  English  Grammar,  p.  32,  §  28].  But  we  must  further 
exclude  all  those  cases  in  which  the  differentiation  of  meaning  is 
the  result  of  a  grammatical  isolation.  If,  for  instance,  the  old 
participle  bescheiden  is  still  employed  as  an  adjective  with  the 
meaning  oi '  modestus^  while,  on  the  other  hand,  as  a  proper  parti- 
ciple, we  use  beschieden,  there  is  no  doubt  that  the  two  words 
bescheiden  and  beschieden  were  for  a  time  used  indifferently  in  this 
latter  function,  but  beschieden  can  never  have  been  used  for 

413.  On  the  other  hand,  no  notice  is  taken,  in  the  works  cited,  Examples  of 
of  our  second  class,  in  which  the  equivalence  of  meaning  is  only  tiation. 
the  result  of  a  secondary  development.  We  are  thus  after  all 
without  a  clearly  arranged  collection  of  certain  instances  of  the 
undoubted  differentiation  of  equivalent  expressions.  It  will  there- 
fore be  well  to  illustrate  the  process  somewhat  at  large.  These 
instances  are  chosen  for  the  most  part  from  NHG. 

414.  The  forms  knabe  and  knappe  are  in  MHG.  absolutely 
equivalent,  each  possessing  the  divergent  NHG.  significations. 
Similarly  raben  (  =  NHG.  rabe^  and  rappe  are  both  applied  to  the 
bird,  whereas  in  modern  times,  in  the  written  language,  rappe  is 
confined  to  the  metaphorical  use  as  a  term  for  a  black  horse.^  A 
third  form,  rappen,  with  an  n  transferred  from  the  oblique  cases, 
has  established  itself  as  a  name  for  the  coin  (originally  with  a 

'  C.  Michaelis  is  certainly  on  the  whole  wrong  (p.  42  sqq.)  in  apprehending  the  more 
nearly  Latin  sense  of  the  more  nearly  Latin  form  as  the  result  of  a  differentiation. 
*  I  cannot,  it  must  be  owned ,  adduce  any  example  of  rate  in  the  transferred  sense. 


black  head  of  a  bird),  which  was  at  first  known  as  rafpe,  rapp,  and 
further,  as  rabenheller,  rabenpfennig,  rabenbatzen,  rabenvierer  (cf. 
Adelung).  The  MHG.  bache  ('  hinterbacken,'  '  schinken ')  bears  the 
same  relation  to  backe  (original  Teutonic  bako — bakkd)  as  knabe  to 
knappe ;  and  it  is  hence  probable  enough  that  we  have  to  deal 
with  a  differentiation  of  meaning  developed,  as  in  the  previous 
instance,  secondarily,  at^a  of  much  older  date.  The  difference 
between  reiter  (=MHG.  riter)  and  ritter,  scheuen  and  scheuchen, 
belongs  entirely  to  NHG.,  as  does  the  different  shade  of  meaning 
hetween  jungfrau  a.nd  jungfer.  Hain  is  a  contraction  from  hagen, 
and  in  MHG.  the  same  meaning  attaches  to  both  (as  we  see  still  in 
the  case  of  such  compounds  as  hagebuche — hainbuche,  hagebutte — 
hainbutte,  etc.) ;  hagen  in  the  derived  sense,  now  restricted  to  hain, 
appears  in  Burkhardt  Waldis. 

415.  Double  forms  arising  from  the  confusion  of  different 
methods  of  declension  are  often  differentiated  ;  thus  Franke — 
franken,  tropf—tropfen  (cf  for  their  identical  usage  the  examples 
given  by  Sanders,  e.g.  Haller  :  Du  bist  der  weisheit  meer,  wir  sind 
davon  nur  trbpfe ;  and  conversely  Wieland  :  dem  armen  tropfen), 
fieck—flecken,  fahrt—fdhrte,  stadt — stdtte  (MHG.  nom.  vart,  stat— 
gen.  verte,  stete) ;  at  the  same  time,  with  difference  of  gender,  der 
lump — die  lumpe,  der  trupp — die  truppe,  der  karren — die  karre,  der 
possen—die  posse.  The  difference  of  gender,  with  the  same 
nominative  form,  is  utilised  in  der  band,  das  band  (cf  examples  of 
der  band  used  in  the  sense  of  '  fascia,' '  vinculum,'  in  the  Deutsches 
■wM.),  der~die  Jlur  (the  former  only  in  the  signification  of  '  haus- 
flur',  though  the  form  die  flur  occurs  also  with  the  same  significa- 
tion); der— die  haft  (in  MHG.  the  separation  of  meanings  is  already 
fairly  established)  ;  der — das  inensch  (the  latter  form  was  still 
employed  in  the  seventeenth  century  without  any  suggestion  of 
contempt) ;   der — das  schild  (the  separation   is  hardly,  even  yet. 


completely  carried  out,  cf.  Sanders,  s.v.) ;  der — das  verdienst,  der — 
die  see,  der — die  schwulst  (examples  for  both  genders,  alike  in  the 
proper  and  metaphorical  signification,  are  to  be  seen  in  Sanders) ; 
die — das  erkenntniss  (the  latter  form  still  used  very  frequently 
by  Kant  in  the  sense  of  'cognitio')  \la  critique,  le  critique:  la 
manceuvre  d'un  navire,  le  manxuvre :  la  statuaire  des  anciens,  un 
statuaire :  le  cripe,  la  cripe :  similarly  livre,  manche,  p^riode,  poile\. 
To  these  must  be  added  the  cases  in  which  different  plural  forma- 
tions are  differentiated,  bande — bander,  dinge — dinger  (as  opposed 
to  the  modern  usage,  e.g.  cf  LUTHER,  Luke  xxi.  26,  fUr  warten 
der  dinger  die  kommen  sollen  auf  erden) ;  gesichte — gesichter 
(examples  of  cases  where  the  distinction  is  not  observed  are  given 
by  Sanders) ;  lichte — lichter  (the  difference  is  not  consistently 
maintained) ;  orte — orter  (the  same  remark  applies) ;  tuche — tucker, 
worte — w'drter  (examples  are  given  in  Sanders  iii.  1662^,  in  which 
the  former  is  still  employed  like  the  latter) ;  sdue — sauen  i(:i.  for 
an  older  stage  passages  like  von  den  zahmen  sauen  entsprossen 
or  wilde  sdue  und  bdren,  etc.,  given  in  Sanders) ;  effecte — effecten, 
\rateul,  les  aieux,  and  aieuls :  le  travail,  travaux,  and  travails  (a 
minister's  'reports')].  In  an  older  stage  of  NHG.  we  have  from  druck 
the  plural  drucke,  as  well  as  driicke :  at  the  present  day  we  have  the 
plural  drucke  employed  only  in  the  sense  of  'printed  works,'  for 
which  Goethe  still  uses  driicke :  though,  on  the  other  hand,  we 
maintain  the  forms  abdriicke,  eindriicke,  ausdriicke.  The  differentia- 
tion of  tor — tiir  goes  back  further  (cf  Sievers,  Beitrage  v.  Ill  ^)  and 
luck — buche  (OHG.  buoh,  still  frequently  feminine,  is  the  old  nomi- 
natival form,  buocha  the  accusative  form) ;  the  old  nominative 
forms  buoz,  wis,  halp  are  restricted  to  the  employment  in  certain 
formulae  {mir  wirdit  buoz,  managa  wis,  einhalp,  etc.,  even  yet  we 
use  anderthalb,  drittekalb),  while  the  accusative  forms  buoza,  wisa, 
halba  have  become  usual  with  no  restrictions. 

i[As  in  English  brothers,  brethren  ;  pence,  pennies.] 


416.  This  utilisation  of  different  inflexional  forms  meets  us 
in  nearly  all  inflected  languages.  In  English  we  might  cite  many 
instances  of  duplicate  plural  formations :  cloths,  clothes ;  brothers, 
brethren,  while  in  the  older  language  both  methods  of  formation 
were  employed  indifferently  as  in  the  case  of  most  similar  words : 
pennies,  pence  [dies,  dice],  [In  Russian  Chudo,  a  wonder,  makes  its  pi. 
in  chudes-d  to  signify  '  wonders,'  and  in  chudd  (the  regular  forma- 
tion) to  signify  '  monsters ' :  and  there  are  many  similar  cases.] 
Some  substantives  employ  the  irreg.  inflection  where  the  sub- 
stantive has  a  collective  meaning.  In  Dutch  the  plurals  in  -en 
and  -s  are  employed  in  the  case  of  some  words  indifferently 
(vogeLeii,  vogels)  ;  in  the  case  of  others  one  alone  is  commonly  used 
{engelen,  but  pachters)  ;  again,  however,  in  tke  case  of  others  both  are 
employed,  but  with  different  meanings ;  cf  hemelen  ('  heaven,'  in 
its  proper  sense),  hernels  (betthimmel),  '  canopy  of  a  bed ' ;  letteren, 
'  letter,'  or  '  literature,'  letters,  '  letters  of  the  alphabet ' ;  middelen, 
'  means,'  middels,  '  waists ' ;  tafelen,  '  law-tables,'  etc. ;  tafels, 
'  tables  ; '  vaderen,  '  ancestors,'  vaders,  '  fathers ' ;  wateren,  '  waters,' 
waters,  '  streams.'  In  the  same  way  the  forms  in  -en  and  -eren 
stand  side  by  side  :  kleeden,  '  tablecloths,'  kleederen,  '  clothes ' ; 
beenen,  '  legs,'  beenderen,  '  bones ' ;  bladen,  '  leaves '  in  a  book, 
bladeren,  '  leaves,'  in  the  proper  sense.  From  the  Danish  we  may 
cite  skatte  {schdtze),  '  treasures,'  shatter,  '  taxes,'  vaaben,  '  weapons,' 
vaabener,  '  armorial  bearings.'  Where  in  O.  Norse  a  in  the  root- 
syllable  of  the  nouns  changed  with  q  (the  -u  umlaut),  according  to 
the  form  of  the  inflexion  ;  e.g.  sqk{u),  sakar,  etc.,  we  find  that 
in  later  Norwegian,  in  the  first  place,  double  forms  arose,  one  in 
a  and  one  in  0,  of  which  it  commonly  occurs  that  either  the 
first  or  the  second  has  disappeared.  In  some  cases,  however,  both 
have  maintained  themselves  with  a  differentiation  of  meaning :  gata 
{gasse),  '  street,'  '  gate,'  gota,  '  road  '  ;  grav,  '  grave,'  grov,  '  ditch  ' ; 
mark,  'field,'  mork,  'wood' ;  tram,  'height,'  trom,  'border.' 


417.  The  difference  observed  at  the  present  day  in  the  use 
of  the  shorter  and  more  lengthened  forms  in  the  inflexion  of  der 
was  of  gradual  development.  The  forms  der  in  the  genitive 
singular  feminine,  and  in  the  genitive  plural  of  all  genders,  and 
den  in  the  dative  plural,  which  are  now  confined  to  the  adjectival 
use,  still  occur  frequently  in  the  seventeenth  century,  and  occa- 
sionally in  the  eighteenth,  in  the  substantival  sense;  e.g.,  in  Goethe: 
die  krone,  der  mein  filrst  mich  wiirdig  achtet.  On  the  other  hand, 
we  find  conversely  derer  and  denen  used  adjectivally — nay,  even 
as  a  pure  article ;  cf  e.g.  derer  dinge,  derer  leute  (LOGAU) ;  derer 
gesetze  (Klopstock)  ;  zu  denen  dingen,  zu  denen  stunden  (Hein- 
RICH  von  WiTTENWEILER,  fifteenth  century).  Even  as  late  as 
the  eighteenth  century  denen  in  this  application  is  frequent  in 
the  written  language ;  and  even  at  the  present  day  dene,  with 
the  usual  apocope  of  the  n,  is  the  generally  prevailing  form  in 
Alemannic  and  South  Franconian  dialects.  Further,  the  usage 
of  the  present  day  confines  deren  to  the  genitival  function  only, 
while  der,  on  the  contrary,  is  exclusively  employed  in  the  dative ; 
likewise  a  purely  secondary  formation :  cf  von  deren  ich  reden, 
in  deren  die  schineichler  seind  (Gailer  von  Kaisersberg),  0 
fiirstin,  deren  sick  ein  solcher  fUrst  verbiinden  (WecKHERLIN). 
Finally,  the  curious  difference  made  in  NHG.  in  the  employment 
of  the  forms  derer  and  deren  is  of  purely  recent  development; 
cf  wie  viel  seind  deren  die  da  haben  (PauLI)  ;  and  conversely 
■mit  mancher  kunst,  derer  sicks  gar  nit  sckemen  tkar  (Melissus). 

418.  Sckaffen,  as  a  strong  verb,  and  schopfen,  have  arisen 
from  the  same  original  form ;  cf  Gothic  skapjan,  pret.  skop. 
To  the  preterite  scuof  a.  new  regular  present  scaffan  was  formed  in 
OHG.  beside  the  old  form  scepfen ;  in  MHO.  a  preterite  schepfete 
and  a  participle  gesckepfet  was  then  formed  for  sckepfen.  In 
MHG.  schuof,  gesckaffen,  and  sckepfete,  geschepfete,  are  synonymous. 


uniting  in  themselves  the  signification  of  both  the  NHG.  words. 
The  same  conjunction  is  found  in  the  present  schepfen.  The 
present  schaffen  certainly  appears  from  the  earliest  times  confined 
to  the  signification  of  to  create,  shape. 

419.  Ziicken  and  zucken  are  originally  duplicate  forms  with 
the  same  meaning ;  cf  der  schon  das  sckwert  zucket  (Lessing)  ; 
den  anblick  eines  zuckenden  (Herder).  It  is  the  same  with 
driicken  and  drucken. 

420.  The  conjunction  als  is  derived  from  alsd  through  alse. 
[So  the  English  word  as,  like  also,  took  its  rise  from  AS.  ealswd^* 

*  M.E.  als   In   MHG.   the    pair    are    synonymous ;    both   alike   can   be  used 


demonstratively   or   relatively.       In    the   same    way    there    is   no 
Lmr^ith^  difference  of  signification  between  danne  and  denne,  wanne  and 

then  and  ,     ,_,.  .... 

than.m'&xi^.  wenne.\  ihe  modern  distmction  m  usage  has  been  developed 
by  a  very  slow  process ;  and  the  fortuitous  nature  of  its  origin 
shows  itself  at  the  present  day  in  the  want  of  a  logical  principle 
of  differentiation.  The  modern  difference  between  warum  and 
woriini  is  likewise  secondary. 

421.  The  participle  of  the  intransitive  verdorben  and  that  of 
the  corresponding  transitive  verderbt  have  separated;  the  latter 

drmken!"  '  being  employed  in  a  moral  sense  only.t   [Cf  wrung,  wrong.']     The 


shaped  '  difference  of  meaning  is  also  secondary  in  the  case  of  bewegt  and 
'  ^'^^-  bewogen ;  cf  e.g.  das  meer  .  .  .  vom  winde  bewogen  (Pratorius)  ; 
der  hat  im  tanse  nicht  die  beine  recht  bewogen  (Rachel)  ;  on  the 
other  hand,  dass  er  dardurch  bewegt  ward,  solches  in  eigener  person 
zu  erfahren  (Buch  der  Liebe)  [cf  the  difference  between  aged 
and  ag^d\. 

422.  The  words  in  -heit,  -schaft,  -turn,  were  formerly  essentially 
identical  in  meaning.  They  are  all  capable  of  denoting  a  pro- 
perty;  many  have  in  addition  developed  a  collective  meaning; 
and  words,  too,  in  -niss,  and  simpler  formations  like  hohe,  tiefe 


often  covered  nearly  the  same  ground.     This  state  of  things  has, 
on  the  whole,  continued ;  but  in  single  cases  we  find  that  where 
several  of  these  formations  stood  side  by  side  they  have  mostly 
in  one  way  or  other  suffered  differentiation.^    Cases  in  which  the 
different  usages  now  distributed  over  several  such  formations  were 
once  completely  united  in  each  are  certainly  not  very  common ; 
still,  compare  gemein(d)e  and  gemeinschaft,  from  which  gemeinheit 
also  did  not  originally  differ  in  meaning.     The  two  following  pairs 
are  also  worth  remarking  :  kleinheit,  kleinigkeit ;  neuheit,  neuigkeit. 
Examples  of  the  earlier  undifferentiated  application  of  the  former 
pair  are  cited  in  the  Deutsches   Wbrterbuch ;  cf  so  verhdlt  es  sich 
audi  viit  gewissen  kleinheiten,  die  es  iin  haushalt  nicht  sind  (Goethe- 
Zelter   Correspondence),   die   ausnehmende   kleinigkeit   der   ■masse 
(Kant).     As  regards  the   latter  pair  Adelung   teaches   us   that 
neuheit  was  used  'in  a  concrete  sense,  a  thing  hitherto  not  ex- 
perienced or  known,  for  which,  however,  neuigkeit  is  more  common' ; 
on  the  other  hand,  '  die  neuigkeit  einer  nachricht,  einer  empfindung, 
eines  gedankens,  etc.,  for  which  neuheit  is  at  the  present  day  more 
common  in  polite  conversation.' 

423.  It  is  much  the  same  with  the  adjectives  in  -ig,  -isch,  -lich, 
-sam,  -haft,  -bar,  in  which  the  existing  differences  of  meaning 
do  not  depend  upon  any  difference  of  meaning  in  the  suffixes 
themselves.  An  example  in  point  is  ernstlich,  ernsthaft; 
cf,  for  the  older  usage,  die  stets  gar  ernstlich  und  sauer  sieht 
(Ayrer)  ;  der  ernsthaft  fleisz  (FISCHART). 

424.  In  MHG.  sd  and  als  {also,  alse)  are  absolutely  synonymous  ; 
both  serving  equally  as  demonstratives  and  as  relatives.  In  nhg. 
they  are  differentiated,  so  being  in  general  used  as  a  demon- 
strative, and  fl/j,as  a  relative  ;  cf  e.g.  so  wol  als  auch  (mhg.  sd  wol 
sd  or  als  wol  als),  so  bald  ais.  Still  a  trace  of  the  demonstrative 
als  survives  in  alsbald  [cf.  English  as  soon  as\     In  MHG.  Hhte  and 

i[C/.  Christentum  as  against  Ckristenheit .} 

284         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

vil  lihte  have  equally  the  meaning  of  NHG.  leicht  and  vielleicht. 
The  restriction  of  the  form  ehe  to  the  conjunction  is  secondary. 
Even  Gleim  writes  ehe  als  Klopf stock ;  GOETHE,  er  soil  eh  gewonnen 
als  verloren  habett. 

425.  In  MHG.  sichern  may  bear  the  same  meaning  as  NHG. 
versichern,  and,  conversely,  versichern  may  bear  the  same  meaning 
as  NHG.  sichern  (e.g.  die  stat  init  muren  und  mit  graben  versichern). 
The  differentiation  of  sammeln,  sammlung,  and  versammeln, 
versammlung,  is  unknown  to  older  NHG. ;  cf.  Moses  und  Aaron  .  .  . 
sanieleten  auch  die  ganze  gemeinde,  Gott  ist  fast  mdchtig  in  der 
samlunge  der  heiligen  (LUTHER)  ;  Des  festlichen  tages,  an  dem  die 
gegend  mit  jubel  trauben  lieset  und  tritt  und  den  most  in  die  fdsser 
versammelt  (Goethe)  ;  Die  linsen  sind gleichsam  eine  versainmlung 
unendlicher  prismen  (GOETHE) ;  Dass  sie  (the  Jews  in  their  dis- 
persion) keiner  versammlung  mehr  hoffen  diirfen  (LuTHER).  The 
simple  form  offnen  is  at  an  earlier  period  employed  in  the  meta- 
phorical sense  of  offenbaren  ('to  reveal'),  like  eroffnen  at  the 
present  day.  A  similar  relation  often  exists  between  simple  and 
compound,  or  between  different  compounds  which  have  a  simple 
verb  in  common. 

426.  Certain  processes  must  also  be  noticed  here  which,  with- 
out being  strictly  speaking  differentiations,  yet  arise  from  the 
same  fundamental  processes  as  these,  and  are  hence  important 
as  aiding  us  to  form  a  judgment  on  them.  The  starting-point  is 
here  a  partial,  instead  of  complete  equivalence  of  meaning. 

427.  It  may  be  that  that  partial  equivalence  has  been 
preceded  by  a  complete  one,  the  immediate  ground  of  the 
change  being  that  the  one  received  an  enlargement  of  meaning 
in  which  the  other  did  not  participate.  Then  follows  very 
frequently  the  further  consequence,  that  the  former  is  completely 
ejected  from  its  original  meaning  by  the  latter,  and  confined  to 


the  new.  Kristentuom  and  Kristenheit  are  certainly  used  even 
by  Walther  v.  d.  Vogelweide  in  their  distinct  modern  senses ; 
but  the  latter  is  still  employed  in  MHG>  in  the  fundamental 
meaning  of  christentum ;  cf  e.g.  Tristan  1968  (of  a  child  to  be 
christened),  durch  daz  ez  sine  kristenheit  in  gates  namen  empfienge. 
MHG.  wistuom  denotes  the  same  as  wisheit,  but  side  by  side  of 
this  the  derived  meaning  'instruction  in  law'  appears,  and  then 
the  NHG.  weistum  is  restricted  to  this.  mhg.  gelkhnisse  can 
still  be  employed  in  the  same  sense  as  gelichheit,  the  NHG.  gleich- 
niss  has  renounced  this  original  meaning.  Indessen  (indes)  has 
originally  a  purely  temporal  meaning;  cf.  ick  bin  indess  krank 
gewesen  (Lessing)  ;  it  has  been  ejected  from  this  meaning  by 

428.  A  more  common  occurrence  is  that  a  word,  which  at 
an  earlier  date  was  quite  different  in  meaning  from  another, 
occupies  one  portion  of  the  domain  of  the  latter,  and  then  gradu- 
ally claims  it  for  itself  alone.  Thus  bcese  is  restricted  to  the  area 
of  moral  signification  (mhg.  also  bcesiu  kleit,  etc.)  by  the  encroach- 
ment of  schlecht  (originally  '  smooth,'  '  straight,')  [English  '  slight ']. 
Similar  restrictions  have  been  imposed  upon  siech  (originally  [like 
English  sick^  the  common  word  for  '  ill '),  seuche,  sucht,  by  krank, 
krankheit  (originally  '  weak,'  'weakness');  «>^^(MHG.  also  in  the 
signification  of  '  avaricious '),  by  karg  (originally  '  shrewd ') ;  als 
by  wie  (originally  an  interrogative  word ;  then  a  relative,  in  the 
first  instance  only  of  the  generalising  kind)  ;  ob  by  wenn. 

429.  Finally,  it  is  very  common  to  find  that  a  newly-formed 
word,  or  one  borrowed  from  a  foreign  language,  ejects  an  older 
word  from  a  portion  of  its  domain.  Thus  the  MHG.  ritterschaft 
has  also  the  signification  of  rittertum  ;  but,  on  the  formation 
of  the  latter  word,  it  loses  this  meaning.  In  the  same  wayfreund- 
lich    is    menaced    by  freundschaftlich,    wesentlich   by   wesenhaft, 

^  Thus  '  arch  '  in  me.  meant  cowardly  ;  but  is  now  restricted  to  meaning  of '  sly.' 



empfindlich  by  empfindsam,  einig  by  einzig,  gemein  by  gemeinsam 
and  allgemein,  lehen  by  durlehen,  stegreij  by  steigbUgel,  kunstlich 
by  kunstvoll  and  kunstreich,  bein  by  ^«o<r^^«  (originally  Middle 
Germ.).     [For  numerous  examples  v.  Trench's  Select  Gloss^ 

430.  These  various  processes  may  appear  in  manifold  com- 
binations with  each  other  and  with  the  process  of  differentiation 
in  the  stricter  sense.  Should  the  history  of  the  development  of 
meanings  ever  grow  into  a  science,  it  will  be  of  primary  import- 
ance to  take  the  most  scrupulous  account  oi  these  phenomena 
Our  principle  that  every  detail  must  only  be  scrutinized  with  con- 
stant reference  to  the  entire  mass  of  linguistic  material  is  confirmed 
in  this  respect  as  well ;  in  no  other  way  is  appreciation  of  the  causal 
connexion  possible.  As  the  above  hints  might  lead  us  to  suppose, 
it  is  exactly  the  absence  of  consistently  applied  logical  principles 
which  is  here  characteristic.  Accident  and  involuntary  sequence 
are  everywhere  evident. 
Syntactical  43 1.  We  have  previously  touched  on  several  occasions  on  the 


tion.  domain    of    syntax.      The    processes    above    discussed    manifest 

themselves  equally  in  the  case  of  purely  syntactical  phenomena. 

432.  In  OHG.  duplicate  forms  had  arisen  in  the  strong  declen- 
sion of  the  adjective  for  the  nominative  singular  as  well  as  for 
the  accusative  singular  neuter  guot—guoter,  guotiu,  guotaz.  No 
difference  in  the  usage  of  these  forms  meets  us  at  the  outset.  On 
the  one  hand,  the  so-called  uninflected  attributive  is  employed 
before  the  substantive, — this  usage  is  still  universally  prevalent 
in  MHG. — while  at  the  present  day  the  inflected  one  has  established 
itself  universally  with  the  exception  of  a  few  isolated  traces; 
on  the  other  hand,  the  inflected  form  is  used  as  well  in  places 
where  the  uninflected  has  at  a  later  date  established  itself;  it 
"desUm-  is  thus  used  attributively  after  the  substantive;  e.g.  Krist guater, 
h,>pcs.        thaz  himilrkhi  hohaz  (OTFRlD),-*even  in  NHG.  der  knappe  guoter  ' 


(Parzival)  ;  ein  wolken  so  truebez  (Heinrich  von  MORUNGEN), 

by  the  side  of  the  more  usual  der  knappe  guot,  etc. ;  further,  as 

predicate  :  ist  iuuar  mieta  mihhilu^iJ^A.'TlAii)  ;  uuird  thu  stummir^ 

(Otfrid)  ;  occasionally  still  in  MHG.,  e.g.  daz  daz  wtte  velt  vollez 

frouwen  wcsre^ (PAkzlVAL,  671,  19)  ;  thus  also  iA  habetiz  io  giuuissaz 

{'  I   always  held   it  as  certain,'   Otfrid)  ;  a/sd  nazzer  muose  ich 

scheiden*"!^ A.'LTimii.  v.  d.  VOGELWEIDE).     In  the  case  of  ein  and 

the    possessive    pronoun    the   uninflected    form    has    established 

itself  even  before  the  substantive ;  formerly  the  two  forms  stood 

side  by  side :  cf.  stner  sdmo,  stnaz  korn,  einaz  fisgizzi  (Otfrid). 

433.  The    duplicate    forms    ward    and    wurde    have    parted 

company :  the  former  being  confined  to  the  signification  of  the 

aorist,  while  the   latter  alone  can  be  employed   in  the  sense  of 

the  imperfect.     The  separation  is,  however,  not  completely  carried 

out,  because  wurde  can  be  used  in  both  ways.     We  may  assume 

with   tolerable   certainty   that    in    IE.    no   original    difference   of 

meaning  existed  between  the  indicative  imperfect  and  indicative 

aorist,  nor,  again,  between   the    different    moods   of  the   present 

and  those  of  the  aorist.     For  the  double  sense  probably  arose 

from  a  single  paradigm,  where  a  discrepancy  due  to  the  shifting 

accent  was   removed   by  two   divergent   processes  of  correction. 

In  Sanskrit,  even  in  the  form  in  which  we  have  received  it,  the 

forms  are  not  distinguished  in  all  classes  of  verbs.     Whether  we 

prefer  to  call  the  Gothic  viljau  ('  I  will ')  an  optative  present  or 

aorist  is  absolutely  indifferent.     Generally  speaking,  it  may  be 

assumed    that    the  tense  and  mood  system  of  the  IE.  language 

must  have  proceeded  to  its  development  by  means  of  a  number 

■of  differentiations  of  meaning — a  process  accompanied  at  every 

step   by  the  opposite  one,  viz.,  the    unification    in   meaning   of 

different  formations. 

'■  =  Your  reward  is  great.  ^  =  Become  thou  dumb. 

*  =  That  the  wide  field  should  be  full  of  women.        *  =  Thus  wet  I  had  to  depart. 


The  original    T    *  VERY  grammatical  category  is  produced  on  the  basis  of  a 

harmony  ^ 


between         I    \i     psychological  onc.     The  former  is  originally  nothing  but 


and  gram-     the  transition  of  the  latter  into  outward  manifestation.    As  soon  as 

matical  . 

categories     the  agency  of  the  psychological  category  can  be  recognised  m  the 

is,  in  course 

oftime,        use  of  language,  it  becomes  a  grammatical  category.     Its  agency, 
tendency  to   howcvcr,  by  no  means  ends  with  the  creation  of  the  latter.     It  is 

remove  the       .,_.,  ,  ^.  ..  .,,_ 

discrepancy,  itself  m  dependent  of  language.  As  it  existed  before  the  gram- 
matical category,  so  it  does  not  cease  to  operate  when  this 
comes  into  being.  In  this  way  the  original  harmony  between  the 
two  may  be  in  the  course  of  time  disturbed.  The  grammatical 
category  is  to  some  extent  a  petrifaction  of  the  psychological.  It 
adheres  to  a  fixed  tradition.  The  psychological,  on  the  other 
hand,  remains  always  a  free,  living  agent,  capable  of  taking  mani- 
fold and  changing  forms  according  to  individual  apprehension.  In 
addition  to  this,  change  in  meaning  operates  in  many  ways  to  pre- 
vent the  grammatical  category  from  covering  the  same  ground  as 
the  psychological.  Then,  as  a  tendency  to  convergence  makes  itself 
felt,  the  grammatical  category  suffers  a  displacement,  whence  may 
arise  ambiguous  phenomena  which  admit  of  no  simple  adjustment 
to  the  categories  thus  far  existing.  The  consideration  of  these 
processes,  which  we  can  observe  more  accurately,  throws  light  at 
the  same  time  upon  the  origin,  which  our  observation  cannot  reach, 


of  the  grammatical  categories.  We  proceed  accordingly  to 
consider  some  of  the  most  important  grammatical  categories  from 
the  points  of  view  indicated. 

435.  The  foundation  of  grammatical  gender  is  the  natural Gavia. 
difference  of  sex  in  men  and  animals.  If  a  masculine  or  feminine 
gender  is  ascribed  to  other  objects — nay,  even  to  the  names  of 
qualities  and  activities — this  is  the  operation  of  fancy  which 
apprehends  these  after  the  analogy  of  human  personality.  But 
neither  natural  sex  nor  that  ascribed  by  fancy  has  in  itself  any- 
thing to  do  with  grammar.  The  speaker  might  think  of  anything 
as  a  male  or  female  individual  without  the  least  trace  of  any 
such  thought  appearing  in  language.  The  linguistic  instruments 
whereby  we  now  recognise  the  grammatical  gender  of  a  substantive 
are  the  concord  in  which,  on  the  one  hand,  attribute  and  predicate, 
on  the  other  hand,  a  substitutory  pronoun  stands  therewith.  Thus 
the  rise  of  the  grammatical  gender  stands  in  the  closest  corre- 
spondence with  the  rise  of  a  variable  adjective  and  pronoun. 
The  variability  with  regard  to  gender  of  the  adjective  presup- 
poses that  the  difference  in  gender  has  become  attached  to  a 
special  stem-ending.  This  phenomenon  might  be  explained  by 
supposing  that  the  stem-ending  in  question  was  originally  an  inde- 
pendent word,  a  pronoun  which,  while  still  independent,  had 
acquired  a  reference  to  a  male  or  female  individual.  Still  this 
assumption  is  not  absolutely  necessary.  It  might  conceivably 
happen  that,  by  pure  accident,  an  overwhelming  majority  had 
pronounced  for  the  masculine  in  the  case  of  one  stem-ending,  and 

1  For  the  subject  of  this  section  cf.  especially  Grimm,  Gr.  iii.  311 — 563;  Kleine 
schrift.  iii.  349  sqq.  ;  Diez,  iii.  92—8 ;  Miklosich,  iv.  17—37  5  Schroeder,  p.  89 ;  Brug- 
mann,  Z.  f.  spr.  xxiv.  34  sqq.  ;  Delbriick,  iv.  4—13;  W.  Meyer,  Die  schicksale  des 
lateinischen  neutrums  im  romamschen,  Halle  1883  ;  Large,  De  suhstantims  Graecis 
feminini  generis  secundae  declinationis  capita  tria,  Lipsiae  1885  (Diss.).  [See  Sayce, 
Principles  of  Comparative  Philology,  p.  264  sqq.'\ 



an  equal  majority  for  the  feminine  in  the  case  of  the  other. 
In  the  pronoun,  as  in  the  adjective,  the  distinction  of  gender  may 
appear  in  the  stem-ending ;  it  may,  however,  also  be  expressed 
by  specific  roots.  It  seems  probable  that  grammatical  gender 
developed  earliest  in  the  case  of  the  substitutory  pronoun,  just  as 
it  is  there  that  it  has  maintained  itself  longest  in  languages,  such 
as  English,  where  it  has  partially  disappeared. 

436.  When  it  first  arose,  grammatical  gender  doubtless 
coincided  throughout  with  natural  sex.  Departures  from  this  rule 
gradually  came  about,  especially  through  changes  in  meaning,  as 
well  as  merely  '  occasional '  modifications  of  meaning.  As  a  result 
of  this,  the  natural  sex  again  asserts  its  claims,  in  the  first  instance, 
by  causing  a  violation  of  the  grammatical  concord  ;  cf.  such  cases 
as  eines  frauenzimmers,  die  sick  ant  artigsten  gegen  mich  erwiesen 
hatte  (GOE.) ;  die  hdsslichste  meiner  kammermddchen  (Wieland)  ; 
Lat.  duo  importuna  prodigia,  quos  egestas  addixerat  (CiC.) ;  capita 
conjurationis  virgis  caesi  ac  securi  percussi  {l^lVY);*  septem   milia 

t  xl.  41. 

V.  Draeger  hoimnum  ifi  navBS  tmpositos  (LlVY);t  Greek,  w  ^'CKtot,  w  irepiaaa 
TifiijOeU  TeKvov  (EUR.);§</)t\TaT'  AlylcrOov  /3ia  (Aesch.).  From  this 
stage  we  arrive  next  at  a  complete  change  of  gender.  Thus  in 
Greek  we  find  that  masculine  designations  of  persons  and  animals 
are  made  also  feminine  by  the  simple  process  of  referring  them  to 
feminine  objects.  For  instance,  we  find  side  by  side  the  duplicate 
forms  0 — 97  dyyeXo';,  StSatj-AraXo?,  larpo'},  rvpavvo<;,  eXaKfjo:;,  "■n-rro's^ 
etc.  Conversely,  in  Christian  times  a  form  o  7rap6evo<;  ^  was  con- 
structed. The  diminutives,  originally  neuter,  readily  assume  the 
masculine  or  feminine  gender  when  the  diminutive  meaning  has 
been  obscured.  Just  so  in  German  die  frdulein  is  common  in  the 
dialects,  even  with  older  writers.  If  collectives  or  designations  of 
qualities   become  designations  of  persons,  the   result  may  be  a 

'  Cf.  Lange,  u.s.  p.  27  sqq.  2  2bid.  p.  28. 

§  Tro.  733. 


change  of  gender.  The  French  le  guide,  originally  '  guidance,' 
answers  to  the  Italian  la  guida  ;  the  French  le  garde,  '  the  watch- 
man,' is  originally  identical  with  la  garde,  '  the  guard  ; '  cf.  further, 
the  Spanish  el  cura, '  the  priest,'  el  justicia, '  the  magistrate  ; '  the 
Old-Bulgarian  junota,  'youth,'  as  a  masculine  means  "a  youth;' 
starosta,  '  age,'  as  a  masculine  '  the  elder  of  a  village ; '  the  Russian 
golova,  which  in  the  feminine  means  '  a  head,'  and  in  the  masculine 
'  a  conductor.'  Of  specially  common  occurrence  are  feminine  sur- 
names given  to  masculine  personal  names ;  cf.  Latin  Alauda, 
Capella,  Stella ;  It.  Colonna,  Rosa,  Barbarossa,  Malaspina,  etc. 

437.  It  often  happens  that  the  fact  that  a  word  belongs  to  a 
special  category  decides  its  gender.  This  depends  partly  upon  the 
fact  that  the  gender  of  the  common  designation  of  the  species 
fixes  the  gender  of  the  more  special  designation.  Thus  it  is  easy 
for  a  change  of  gender  to  follow  in  connexion  with  words  connected 
in  idea. 

438.  Here  therefore  we  have  cases  of  analogy.  Thus  the 
word  mittwoch,  earlier  mitte  woche  {media  hebdomas)  used  dialecti- 
cally  even  at  the  present  day  as  a  feminine,  has  come,  like  the 
French  dimancke,  to  be  used  as  a  masculine  after  the  model  of  the 
other  names  for  the  week-days.  The  foreign  names  Tiber  and 
Rhdne  have  joined  the  majority  of  German  river-names.  In  Greek 
many  names  of  trees  and  plants  have  become  feminine ;  the  words 
S/jv?  and  ^oravq,  as  class  designations,  causing  the  feminine  gender 
to  become  the  normal  one.i  This  process  manifests  itself  most 
clearly  in  words  which  in  their  proper  meaning  exhibit  a  different 
gender,  and  have  only  become  feminines  in  their  transference 
to  plants: 2  cf  o  Kvavo%,  'steel'  — 17  Kvavo<i,  'the  corn  flower,' 
so  called  from  its  resemblance  in  colour  to  that  metal.  In  the 
same  way  the  names  of  towns  exhibit  a  tendency  to  the  feminine 

1  Cf.  Large,  u.s.  p.  35  sqq.  "  Hid.  pp.  II,  42  sqq- 


gender ;  cf.  r\  Kepa/j.01;  from  6  Kepafio^,  '  clay  ; '  ■^  K.iaa-6^  from 
6  Ktaao^,  '  ivy ; '  17  M.dpa6o^  from  d  fidpaOo';,  '  fennel  ; '  77  "Ittj/o? 
from  d  ltrv6<;,  '  oven ; '  ^  'laXno-d?,  the  town,  from  d  'IaXi'a-o9,  the 
name  of  a  person/  [cf.  Mdtzner,  FR.  GR.  p.  380.] 

439.  In  other  cases  formal  reasons  have  brought  about  a 
change  in  gender.  Thus  in  Latin  it  was  customary  for  words  in  -a, 
so  far  as  they  were  not  designations  for  male  persons,  to  be  of 
feminine  gender.  In  consequence  we  find  that  the  Greek  neuters 
in  -)xa  in  ante-  and  post-classical  writers  appear,  at  least  in 
popular  Latin,  as  feminines  :  cf  schema,  dogma,  diadema,  and  for  this 
reason  they  often  appear  in  the  Romance  languages  as  feminines.^ 
The  Italian  word  ago,  answering  to  the  Latin  acus,  is  masculine. 
The  Old  Greek  feminines  in  -09  are  in  Modern  Greek  mostly  dis- 
carded, in  some  cases  having  passed  into  the  lists  of  mascuUnes : 
e.g.  d  irXdravo^,  d  Kvirdpia-a-of.^  Even  the  natural  sex  has  in  some 
cases  not  prevented  the  change  of  gender ;  cf  prov.  papa  and 
prof  eta  used  as  feminines.* 

440.  The  contrast  between  the  traditional  gender  of  the  single 
word  and  that  which  we  expect  from  its  termination  may  be 
cancelled  in  another  way,  namely,  by  a  change  not  of  gender, 
but  of  termination — the  new  termination  being,  of  course,  one 
characteristic  of  the  gender  in  question. 

441.  Thus  we  find  that  in  Latin  peristromum  appears  by  the 
side  of  peristroma.  The  Latin  word  socrus  produced  the  Spanish 
and  Provengal  word  suegra,  Portuguese  sogra  :  the  Latin  nurus,  the 
It.  nuora,  Spanish  nuera ;  Port,  and  Prov.  nora :  Old  French  nore. 
Modern   Greek,  again,   has  employed   this    method    in    order  to 

■  Cf.  Lange,  u.s.  p.  42  j-^y. 

"  Cf.  W.  Meyer,  p.  93  sg^.,  where  many  other  examples  are  found  of  change  of  gender 
for  formal  reasons. 

*  Cf.  Hatzidakis,  Zschr.  f.  vgl.  sfr.  27,  82;  Lange,  u.s.  p.  9.  ' 

*  Cf.  W.  Meyer,  p.  9. 


displace  the  feminines  in  -09:  hence  we  get  forms  like  77  vapdiva, 
fj  ifkaTOLvr),  etc.  Even  in  Old  Greek  we  find  forms  like  77  jiivOr)  by 
r)  fj,lv6o(i,  7]  i^evT)  by  17  e^evo<s,  etc.^ 

442.  In  some  cases  the  traditional  was  at  the  same  time  the 
natural  gender, — an  additional  reason  for  its  modifying  the  termina- 
tion, instead  of  being  modified,  by  it.  To  this  head  too  belongs 
the  fact  that  in  Greek  the  ^^-stems  which  have  become  masculines 
have  adapted  the  s  of  the  nominative  (e.g.  veavia<;)} 

443.  Thus  far  we  are  moving  on  fairly  safe  ground.  But  it 
is  a  hard  matter  to  decide  how  far  the  natural  gender,  as  viewed 
by  imagination,  has  affected  the  change  of  grammatical  gender. 
The  subjective  views  of  separate  individuals  may  take  very  dif- 
ferent forms  in  connexion  with  the  same  object.  In  Modern 
English  this  subjectivity  is  capable  of  asserting  itself  unchecked  to 

a  certain  point  ;*and  we  are  thus  able  to  form  an  idea  of  the  way  Eng.  pml 
in  which  originally  the  transference  of  the  masculine  and  feminine 
genders  to  objects  which  possess  no  natural  sex  proceeded.  In 
other  languages  the  free  activity  of  the  imagination  is  held  in 
check  by  the  traditional  sex,  and  cannot  assert  itself  so  long  as 
the  memory  of  the  latter  continues  vigorous.  A  certain  hesitation 
in  regard  to  the  tradition  must  therefore  in  every  case  give  the 
impulse  which  sets  the  imagination  to  work  in  this  direction.  If 
however,  the  traditional  sex  is  not  impressed  on  the  speaker,  or 
only  insufficiently  so,  it  needs  no  very  violent  effort  of  fancy  to 
impel  him  to  attribute  any  gender  at  pleasure  to  the  word  in  ques- 
tion. For  the  difference  in  gender  has  so  thoroughly  permeated 
language  that  it  is  in  many  cases  impossible  to  leave  the  gender 
undetermined,  and  is  therefore  needful  to  decide  for  one  or  another. 
Under  these  circumstances,  the  issue  is  often  decided  by  chance — 
that  is,  by  some  trifling  circumstance,  not  necessarily  connected  in 
»  Cf.  Hatzidakis  and  Lange,  u.s.  "  Cf.  J.  Grimm,  Kl.  schrift.  p.  357. 


any  way  with  the  original  grounds  of  grammatical  gender.     We 
have  merely  to  think  of  the  errors  we  make  in  a  foreign  language. 

444.  Now  whatever  the  positive  causes  for  a  change  of  gender 
may  be,  the  negative  cause  ought  in  no  case  to  be  passed  over ; 
indeed  it  proves  often  of  more  decisive  importance  than  the  posi- 
tive. The  part  that  it  plays  may  be  historically  demonstrated 
from  the  fact  that  those  words  have  been  especially  exposed  to 
change  of  gender,  the  gender  of  which  is,  in  connected  speech, 
most  frequently  without  any  special  mark,  and  thus  leaves  the 
slightest  impress  on  the  memory.  German  has  no  longer  any 
mark  of  gender  in  the  plural,  not  even  in  the  article.  Hence  it  is 
natural  that  precisely  those  words  which  are  most  commonly  used 
in  the  plural  have  changed  their  gender,  sometimes  coincidently 
with  a  change  in  their  phonetic  form,  which  is  rendered  likewise  pos- 
sible by  the  fact  that  the  singular  was  less  firmly  rooted  than  the 
plural :  cf  wange  (mhg.  neuter),  wage  (mhg.  der  wdc),  locke  (MHG. 
der  loc),  trahne  (MHG.  der  traheri),  zdhre  (MHG.  der  zaker),  wolke 
(mhg.  daz  wolken),  waffe  (mhg.  daz  wdfen),  dkre  (MHG.  daz  eher), 
binse  (MHG.  der  binez).  Further,  if  many  weak  masculines  have 
become  feminine  (cf.  Paul's  MHG.  Gr.  §  130,  note  4),  this  will  corre- 
spond with  the  fact  that  the  declension  of  the  weak  masculines 
and  feminines  was  absolutely  identical  in  MHG.  It  may  be 
affirmed  that  no  word  will  adopt  a  grammatical  gender  not  habi- 
tually associated  with  the  inflexions  attached  to  it,  excepting  in 
those  cases  where  natural  sex  operates.  This  negative  function 
of  the  formal  element  in  causmg  change  of  gender  must  not  be 
confused  with  its  positive  agency  already  discussed,  though  the 
distinction  may  not  admit  in  every  single  case  of  being  sharply 

445.  The  neuter  is  in  its  origin  nothing  but  the  '  sexless,'  as  its 
name  rightly  declares.     The   masculine  and  feminine  existed  as 


psychological  categories  before  they  passed  into  grammatical 
ones ;  the  neuter,  on  the  other  hand,  has,  solely  as  a  consequence 
of  the  formal  abolition  of  the  two  natural  genders,  and  as  a  conse- 
quence of  the  consistent  observance  of  concord,  taken  its  place  as 
a  third  grammatical  gender. 


446.  Number  also  passes  into  a  grammatical  category  solely  by  Number. 
the  development  of  concord.     Even  in  inflexional  languages  the 
plural  is  not  in  all  cases  indispensable  where  a  plurality  has  to  be 
designated.     Every  plurality  may  be  conceived  by  the  speaker  as 

a  unity.  And  thus  there  are  designations  for  a  definite  nymber 
which  are  singular,  such  as  score,  dozen,  lakh,  just  as  originally 
thousand,  hundred,  and  probably  also  -other  numerals  also  were 

447.  Thus,  further,  the  so-called  collectives  are  comprehensive 
singular  designations  of  plurality.  Now  as  the  conception  of  an 
aggregate  as  a  unity  or  as  a  plurality  depends  so  much  on  the  sub- 
jective caprice  of  the  speaker,  his  conception  may  also  conflict  with 
that  which  is  exhibited  by  the  grammatical  form  of  the  expression 
chosen,  and  this  variation  of  subjective  conception  attests  itself  by 
the  fact  that  it,  and  not  the  grammatical  number,  determines  the 
concord, — a  result  followed,  in  some  cases,  by  variations  in  gender. 

448.  The  most  common  case  is  where  a  plural  follows  a  singu- 
lar collective.  This  phenomenon  is  much  restricted  in  modern 
literary  German,  which  in  this,  as  in  other  ways,  has  been  very 
powerfully  influenced  by  the  pedantry  of  grammatical  logic.  But  it 
was  of  common  occurrence  during  the  last  century,  as  it  is  in  Greek 

and  Latin,  and  is  at  the  present  day  in  English.*  Cf  ich  habe  mich  t,.s.   ""97' 

for  more 

offenbaret  deines    vaters    hause,   da    sie    noch  in  Egypten   waren  instances. 

*  C/.  Vernal, 
i.  io8. 


(Luther)  ;*  im  volhn  kreise   des  volks  entsprungen,   unter  ihtten 

lebend  (Herdkr)  ;   civitati  persuadet  ut  exirent  (Caesar)  ;t  ex  eo 

t  E.G.  i.  2.   numero,  qui  per  eos  annos  consules  fuerunt  (CiCERO)  ;|  angstlich  im 

J  ^    ^       schlafe  liegt  das  betaubte  volk  und  trdumt  von  rettung,  trdumt  ihres 

'  ^'"  ^''     ohnmdchtigen  wunsches  erfiillung  (GOETHE) ;  das  j'unge  paar  hatte 

%fin^'^^'^  «f/^  nach  ihrer  verbindung  nach  engagement  umgesehen  (Goethe)  ; 

the  whole  nation  seems  to  be  running  out  of  their  wits  (Smollett);§' 

Israel  aber  zog  aus  in  den  streit  und  lagerten  sich  (LUTHER)  ;  alle 

menge  deines  hauses  sollen  sterben,  wenn  sie  manner  worden  sind 

(Luther)  ;  dass  der  rest  von  ihnen  sich  durch  Libyen  nacli  Cyrene 

II  HI  Hy.  VI.  ^'etteten   und  von   da   in   ihr   vaterland  zurUckkamen   (Le.)  ;    the 

army  of  the  queen  mean  to  besiege  us  (SHAKESPEARE)  :||  pars  saxa 

^^""■^si-jaciant   (Ennius)  ;1I    concur sus  populi,   mirantium   quid  rei  esset 

•*i.  41.        (Livy);**    00^0^    rjdpolfydTj,     davfid^ovTei    koX    ISelv    l3ovX6fievoi 

reri.  171.     (XenoPHON).     [Cf  Thompson,  ut  supra,  p.  19]. 

449.  In   the  case   of  many  words  the   combination  with  the 

plural  is  so  common  that  we   may  actually  apprehend  them  as 

plural— that  is,  supposing  that  no  formal  element  points  to  the 

singular.     This  is,  for  instance,  the  case  with  the  English  word 

people.     The  development  admits  even  of  a  further  step,  in  which 

the    discrepancy   between    the    grammatical    and    psychological 

number  is  overcome  by  the  assimilation  of  the  former  to  the  latter. 

Thus    in    the   case   of  OHG.    the   plural  liute  {people =leute),  has 

replaced    the    singular   Hut    {people  =  volk);    perfectly   analogous 

instances  are  the  Fr.  gens  (Old  Fr.  fa  furent  venu  la  gent),  Italian 

gentH^ts\A&gente)\\2.t&\.z.\:mpopuli{K^^v\€i\x5,    Augustin),   and 

the  English /^Z^j.    In  AS.  -waru  denotes  a  '  state  ;'  the  plural  -ware 

mliiT"'    ^^^^'^^^^-  ++  The  German  die  geschwister, '  brothers  and  sisters,'  has 

*°.  §  7.'      arisen  from  the  collective  das  geschwister,  which  is  still  commonly 

found  in  the  last  century.     In  Gothic  there  is  a  collective  neuter 

fadrein  found  in  the  sense  of  '  parents.'     This  is  found  not  merely 

1  For  numerous  instances  see  Matzner,  ut  sufra,  vol.  ii.,  p.  144. 


connected  with  the  plural  of  the  predicate,  but  it  turns  the  article 
which  belongs  thereto  into  the  plural :  '^ai  fadrein,  ]>ans  fadrein. 
At  the  same  time  it  appears  as  well  in  the  plural  form  :  ni  skulun 
barna  fadreinam  kuzdjan,  ak  fadreina  barnam. 

450.  It  happens,  too,  conversely,  that  a  plural  expression 
receives  the  function  of  a  singular  by  the  fact  that  the  parts  which 
are  thereby  indicated  are  comprehended  into  one  united  whole. 
Thus  in  German  one  can  say,  ein  zehn  mark  ;  in  English,  /  would 
do  it  for  another  five  shillings  ;  even,  there's  not  another  two  such 
women  (Warren).  *  Further  mhg.  ze  einen  pfingesten  ;  Latin  una, 

^  '  J-J     i>  '  *  Ten  thou- 

bina  castra,  etc. ;  English  if  a  gallows  were  on  land;  there's  some  ^'^'^'^y""'- 
good  news ;  that  crystal  scales  (SHAKESPEARE),  t  Finally,  such  "3'- 
plurals  also  receive  a  singular  form.  In  German  the  names  of 
festivals,  ostern,  pfingstun,  weihnachten,  properly  dative  plurals,  are 
used  as  singulars.  The  German  word  buch  is  in  Gothic  a  plural : 
bokos,  properly  '  letters  ; '  in  OHG.  the  plural  is  still  used  for  a  book. 
The  Latin  word  castra  is  sometimes  apprehended  as  a  singular 
feminine,  and  forms  a  genitive  castrae ;  in  the  same  way  festa  in 
the  Romance  languages  has  passed  into  a  singular  feminine.  The 
Latin  litterae,  in  the  sense  of  an  'epistle,'  has  passed  into  the 
Italian  lettera  French  lettre;  [the  Latin  vela  into  the  French  voile\ ; 
m,inaciae  has  become  in  French  menace ;  in  Italian  minaccia ; 
nuptiae  has  become  in  French  noce  and  noces  ;  tenebrae  has  become 
in  Spanish  tiniebla  as  well  as  tinieblas. 

451.  When  a  word  is  used  as  an  abstract  it  is,  strictly  speaking, 
incapable  of  any  distinction  of  number.  Since,  however,  in  respect 
of  the  external  form,  a  particular  number  has  to  be  chosen,  it 
is  a  matter  of  indifference  which  this  is.  The  sentences  man  is 
mortal  and  men  are  mortal,  used  in  an  abstract  sense,  express 
the  same  meaning.  Hence  a  change  of  numbers  is  common  in 
the  different  languages.     Otfrid  employs  the  combination  engilon 


joh  manne.     A  pronoun  which  has  reference  to  an  abstract   ex- 
pression stands  sometimes  in  the  plural :  nicht  als  ob  in  ihm  kein 
einziges  punkt  ware,   die  hat  er  (Herder)  ;  ein  echter  deutscher 
manti  mag  keinen  Franzen  leiden,  dock  ihre  weine  trinkt  er  gem 
(Goethe)  ;  nobody  knows  what  it  is  to  lose  a  friend,  till  they  have 
lost  him   (Fielding)  ;    mhg.   swer  gesiht  die  minneclichen,  dem 
muoz  si  wol  behagen,  daz  si  ir  tugent  prtsent ;  j'edes  triftige  beiwort, 
an  denen  er  glUcklich  ist  (Herder).      The  predicate   can   stand 
in  the  plural :  MHG.  daz  iesltcher  recke  in  den  satel  saz  und  in  schar 
^*catt.  ;u.    schihten  ;*Lat.  ubi  quisque  vident,  eunt  obviam  (Plaut.)  •,'\uterque 
Madvi  •S'^^'^^'-S'   defessi  (ib.)  ;J  uter  meruistis   culpam   (ib.)  ;§  neuter  ad  me 
Lat.   r.%    lygfi^  (ib.)  ;||  It.  cotne  ogni  uojno  desinato  ebbero ;   Engl,  neither  of 
;^.B//i  n.  u.  fj^g^j^   ^yg  remarkable   (Blair).     Most  IE.  languages   possess,   for 
29.     '  '  '  denoting  generality,  a  pair   of  pronouns,    one    singular  and   one 
iwi/«». V.  ii.  plural   {every,  all;  jeder,   alle).     These   admit   of  being  readily 
^''  interchanged.     Thus,  even  in  Latin,  the  singular  is  found  by  the 

•iAmDr.  i.  9.  gj^jg  of  omues ;  e.g.  m.ilitat  omnis  amans  (OviD)  ;^in  Italian  the 
singular  ogni  has  become  the  exclusive  form.  In  Greek,  afKfyoTepoi; 
and  afifporepoi,  stand  side  by  side.  Singular  forms  have  grown 
out  of  German  beide.  The  neuter  beides  is  common  ;  it  is  occa- 
sionally found  even  in  MHG.  We  likewise  meet  with  ze  beider  sU 
in  MHG. ;  cf.  beiderseits.  In  older  NHG.  we  meet  with  other 
singular  applications  of  the  word:  beider  baum  (Mathesius) ; 
mit  beidem  arm  (Lohenstein)  ;  auf  beyde  weise  (Lessing). 
Conversely  the  plural  j'ede  is  common,  especially  in  the  previous 
century  (cf  D  Wb.  4^,  2290). 

452.  The  category  of  number  is  further  inapplicable  to  the 
simple  designations  of  materials.  For  individuals,  as  such,  and 
the  contrast  between  individual  objects  and  pluralities,  arise  only 
when  we  contemplate  form  as  well  as  matter.  Hence  the  desig- 
nations of  materials  are  mostly  employed  only  in  the  singular, 


which  has  to  serve  the  place  of  that  neuter  number  which  we 
do  not  possess.  But  a  transition  is  easily  made  from  the  desig- 
nation of  a  material  to  the  designation  for  an  individual  object, 
and  vice  versa,  since  the  individualising  form  is  readily  added, 
or  removed,  in  imagination  ;  cf.  hair,  grass,  bloom,  fruit,  weed, 
gram,  cloth,  stone,  wood,  field,  meadow,  marsh,  heath,  earth,  landj 
bread,  cake,  etc.  Under  this  head,  too,  will  fall  fowl,  for  '  the  meat 
of  fowl ; '  and  in  German,  schwein  for  schweinefleisch ;  cf.  in  Latin, 
leporem  et  gallinam  et  anserem  (Caesar),*  and  fagum  atque  *  e.g.  v.  i». 
abietem  (Caesar,  ib.)  for  beech  and  firewood.  In  the  same  way  we 
must  explain  the  singular  in  cases  like  the  enemy  is  approaching, 
the  Russian  (i.e.  '  the  Russian  army  ')  is  drawing  near  us.  Similarly 
Livy  uses  the  singular:  Romanus,  Poenus,  eques,  pedes,^ etc.,  andtc/Madvig 

p.  51.  §  5- 

even  ventures  on  the  combination  Hispani  milites  et  funditor 
Balearis.  [In  Hor.  Sat.  I,  i.  we  have  miles  nautaequei\  In  Seneca 
we  even  find  multo  hoste.  With  this  may  be  compared  niit 
willkUrlicher  beliebung  des  ganzen  kaufmanns  (MiCRALlUS,  u.a., 
ci.DWb.  5,337). 

453.  The  singular  of  many  words,  again,  in  the  function  of 
an  absolute  form  on  which  the  category  of  numbers  has  not  yet 
been  fully  impressed,  stands  in  NHG.  after  numerals.  This  method 
of  construction  no  doubt  arose  from  cases  in  which  a  true  plural 
form,  which  has  merely  phonetically  come  to  coincide  with  the 
singular  form,  lies  at  the  base  ;  thus  in  the  case  of  mann — pfund, 
buch.  If,  however,  the  archaic  forms  have  maintained  them- 
selves immediately  after  numerals,  and  other  words,  such  as 
fuss,  zoll,  mark,  have  followed,  their  analogy,  this  fact  must 
depend  upon  special  causes.  The  instinct  of  language  is  as 
little  conscious  of  a  plural  form  in  the  archaic  combinations  as 
in  those  analogically  constructed  after  them.  The  fact  is  that, 
immediately  following  a  number,  there  is  no  need  for  any  special 

300         PRINCIPLES  QF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

expression  of  plurality,  this  being  already  sufficiently  denoted 
by  the  number  itself.  We  thus  arrive  at  a  form  which  in  respect 
of  number  is  neutral  or  absolute  ;  and  so,  once  more,  at  a  point  of 
view  similar  to  that  occupied  before  the  rise  of  grammatical  number. 


454.  Various  attempts  have  been  made  to  reduce  the  tenses 
of  the  IE.  languages  to  a  logical  system,  and  neither  arbitrary 
judgment  nor  misplaced  acumen  has  been  wanting  in  the  process. 
We  must,  here  as  elsewhere,  guard  ourselves,  when  dealing  with 
logical  definitions,  against  con.sidering  solely  the  grammatical 
phenomena,  which  we  have  before  us,  and,  when  forming  a  judg- 
ment of  the  latter,  against  an  exclusive  regard  to  purely  logical 
divisions.  There  is  no  such  thing  as  a  perfect  concord  between 
the  logical  and  the  grammatical  categories. 

455.  The  category  of  tense  depends  on  the  temporal  relation 
in  which  an  event  stands  to  a  definite  point  of  time.  As  such 
may  be  taken,  in  the  first  place,  the  actual  moment  of  speech;  i 
and  thus  arises  the  difference  between  past  time,  present  and 
future,  to  which  the  grammatical  categories  of  perfect,  present 
and  future,  tense  correspond.  I  assume  the  perfect  as  the  just 
expression  for  this  relation,  and  not  the  aorist,  though  the  latter 
certainly  does  also  occur  in  this  function.  The  common  defini- 
tion, according  to  which  the  perfect  denotes  '  completed '  and  the 
aorist  '  past '  action,  is  a  mere  verbal  explanation  with  which  no 
clear  conception  can  be  associated.  The  characteristic  feature 
of  the  perfect  in  contrast  to  the  aorist  and  the  imperfect  lies 
in  the  fact  that  it  expresses  the  relation  of  an  event  to  the 
present  time. 

>  Cf.  for  this  section,  Brugmann,  Bet:  der  phil.-hist.  class,  der  sacks,  gesellsch,  d. 
wissenschaften  1883,  p.  169  sqq. 


456.  Instead,  however,  of  the  present,  a  point  may  be  taken 
which  lies  in  the  past  or  the  future ;  and  to  this,  again,  corre- 
spondingly a  threefold  relationship  is  possible.  An  event  may 
be  contemporaneous,  previous,  or  in  prospect.  Contemporaneous- 
ness, with  a  moment  in  past  time,  has  found  its  expression  in 
the  imperfect ;  that  which  has  preceded  it  is  denoted  by  the 
pluperfect ;  for  what  is  in  prospect  in  past  time  no  special  tense 
exists ;  we  have  to  content  ourselves  with  periphrases.  That 
which  has  preceded,  a  point  of  the  future  is  denoted  by  the 
futurum  exactum ;  that  which  is  in  prospect,  from  this  point, 
can  be  expressed  by  periphrases  only ;  the  contemporaneous  is 
rendered  by  the  simple  future.  In  this  scheme  the  aorist,  and 
the  substitutes  for  it  which  have  grown  up  in  single  languages, 
has  as  yet  found  no  place.  It  is  the  narrative  tense — i.e.  it  denotes 
a  process  which  falls  in  the  past ;  not,  however,  in  its  relation 
to  the  present,  but  in  relation  to  another,  but  earlier,  point  of 
past  time.  Herein,  however,  the  process  in  question  is  not  regarded 
as  impending,  but  as  already  fulfilled.  The  point  of  time  at  which 
we  place  ourselves  is  continually  changed  and  moved  forwards. 

457.  What  I  have  said  of  the  relation  of  the  tenses  which 
actually  occur  to  those  which  must  be  ideally  constructed  holds 
good  absolutely  for  the  indicative  only.  For  the  infinitive  and 
participle,  the  point  of  time  with  reference  to  which  we  record 
our  movements  is  defined  by  the  finite  verb  to  which  they  are 
a/ttached.  A  threefold  distinction  of  tense  therefore  suffices. 
The  same  tenses  which  serve  to  express  the  relation  to  a  present 
moment  of  time  are  likewise  employed  to  denote  the  relation 
to  a  point  of  the  past  or  of  the  future.^  This  is  also  the  reason 
why  the  participles,  in  connexion  with  a  finite  verb,  are  so  well 
adapted  to  replace  such  tenses  as  happen  to  be  defective.     The 

1  Cf.  Brugmann,  u.s.  p.  174. 


imperative  is  in  its  nature  always  future,  and  similarly  the  con 
junctive  and  the  optative,  so  far,  that  is,  as  they  denote  tha 
anything  is  to  happen  or  is  wished  for. 

458.  Before  the  formation  of  grammatical  tenses  one  and  th 
same  form  had  to  do  duty  in  their  place,  and  the  time-relatioi 
had  to  be  either  denoted  by  special  words,  or  else  guessed  a 
by  the  context.  No  special  form  undistinguished  by  any  marl 
of  tense  any  longer  occurs.  But  the  function  of  such  a  forn 
is  partially  fulfilled  by  the  Present  as  the  least  characteristic 
tense  side  by  side  with  its  strictly  Present  function.  We  are 
accordingly  in  a  position  to  realise  the  circumstances  which 
preceded  the  formation  of  grammatical  tenses. 

459.  The  present  fulfils  the  function  of  an  absolute  tense,  in 
the  first  instance,  in  all  abstract  sentenjces  (cf  p.  117).  A  sentence 
like  the  ape  is  a  7nammal  applies  to  the  past  and  the  future  as 
well  as  to  the  present.  If  another  sentence  is  subordinated  to 
the  abstract  one,  the  action  of  this  may  be  conceived  as  preceding 
that  of  the  main  sentence,  and  thus  the  perfect  may  be  employed ; 
as  we  shut  the  door  when  the  horse  is  stolen.  What  is  foreign, 
then,  to  the  abstract  sentence  is  not  all  tense-distinction  as  such, 
but  the  fixation  of  a  point  of  departure. 

460.  The  concrete-abstract  sentence  (cf  p.  117)  has  this  in 
common  with  the  pure  abstract  sentence,  that  no  definite  single 
point  of  time  is  decisive ;  that  it  rather  holds  good  for  a  number 
of  different  points  of  time ;  whence  it  comes  that  in  it  the  present 
includes  in  itself  both  past  and  future.  Its  time,  however,  is 
not  an  absolute  one.  It  is  bounded  before  and  behind  in  narrow 
limits,  and  within  these  limits  it  is  possible  for  interruptions  to 
occur.  It  is  likewise  possible  for  all  the  points  of  time  to  fall 
into  the  past  or  the  future,  and  hence  it  comes  that  the  imperfect 
or  perfect,  and  the  future,  can  stand. 


461.  The  present,  in  very  many  languages,  performs  in  the  con- 
crete sentence  the  functions  of  the  future.  This  is  specially  the  case 
when  another  word  sufficiently  indicates  that  the  action  in  question 
is  in  the  future ;  cf.  ich  reise  morgen  ab,  das  nachstens  erscheinende 
buck  ;  and  in  English  such  phrases  as  /  start  to-morrow ;  the  next 
day  that  dawns ;  but  in  other  cases  also,  where  the  situation  ad- 
mits of  no  ^misunderstanding.  Further,  the  future  character  of  the 
main  sentence  is  extended  to  the  by-sentence,  so  that  the  present 
and  perfect  receive  a  future  sense ;  cf  wenn  er  kommt,  werde  ich 
dich  rufen  ;  wenn  ich  die  arbeit  beendigt  habe,  werde  ich  es  dir 
sagen.  Conversely  we  find  in  Greek  the  present  of  the  main 
sentence  after  the  future  of  the  by-sentence ;  cf.  el  av-rt)  fj  7r6\t9 
Xrj^doja-erai  exerai  /cal  rj  iraa-a  SiKeXia  (THUC.y  In  OHG.  the  pre- 
sent is  likewise  used  in  a  future  sense  without  any  further  support. 

462.  We  are  not  accustomed  to  use  the  present  instead  of 
the  preterite  except  in  the  case  of  the  historical  present,  where, 
however,  we  have  to  assume  an  actual  displacement  of  the  point 
of  view  in  the  imagination.  But  in  Sanskrit  the  word  pura,  in 
Greek  irdpo'i,  is  found  with  the  present  in  the  sense  of  the 
preterite  ;  cf.  nrapo';  ye  fiev  ov  ti,  6afii^ei,<!  =  ' formerly  thou  camest 
not  often  '  (HOMER,^  5  386  and  frequently), 

463.  There  occur  also  cases  in  which  the  present  refers  alike  to 
past  and  future;  cf  ich  weiss  das  schon  lange  =  I  know  this  now 
.and  have  long  known  it :  er  ist  seit  20  jahren  verheiratet ;  so  lange 
ich  ihn  kenne,  habe  ich  das  noch  nie  an  ihm  bemerkt ;  seitdem  er  in 
Rom  ist,  hat  er  mir  nicht  geschrieben. 

464.  The  relative  time-relation  of  two  events  which  take  place 
in  the  past  or  in  the  future  remains  in  many  cases  undefined.*  The 
Germans  say  als  ich  ihn  erreichte  as  well  as  erreicht  haite,  wenn  ich 
ihn  finde,  as  well  as  gefunden  habe.     It   is  well   known  that  in 

^  Cf.  Brugmann,  u.s.  p.  170.  ^  Ibid.  p.  170. 

"  A  good  example  of  this  is  found  in  English  where  the  ^ast  tense  refers  to  the 
future :  cf.  such  a  case  as  "  I  am  going  out. "     "  I  thought  you  were.'" 


Greek  the  aorist  stands  in  dependent  sentences  instead  of  the 
Latin  pluperfect,  in  Latin  the  perfect  even  zStev  postquam ;  in  MHG. 
the  simple  preterite  is  quite  common,  where  we  now  employ  the 
periphrasis  which  has  to  take  the  place  of  the  pluperfect.  This 
inaccurate  employment  of  the  tenses  is  the  more  primitive.  The 
pluperfect  is  merely  a  secondary  formation.  More  commonly  still 
the  relative  time-relation  is  neglected  in  the  case  of  the  participle ; 
and  in  this  the  lack  of  forms  strictly  needful  co-operates.  Cf.  In 
Zug  ans  land  steigend,  kehrten  wir  im  Ochsen  ein  (GoETHE,  and 
more  examples  may  be  found  in  Andr.  Sprachg.  112);  Jtaec  Maurus 

'jug.aCm.i..  secum  ipse  diu  volvens  tandem  promittit  (Sallust  •*  for  further 
examples  vid.  Draeger,  §  572).  Conversely  we  find  in  Latin  the 
perfect  participle  with  a  present  meaning :  moritur  uxore  gravida 
relicta  (Liv.,tcf  Draeger,  §  582).  The  participle  in  -ndus  is  not 
used  only  in  a  future  sense  but  in  certain  cases  also  as  a  present, 
as  in  volvenda  dies,  volvendis  mensibus  (Vergil)  ;  alienos  fundos 

%  Pro  M.  §  signis  inferendis^petebat\\{ClCER.O  ;|  Draeger,  §  599).  The  German 
participle  present  unites  the  signification  of  the  present  and  the 
future,  cf.  e.g.  der  nock  immer  betrauerte,  friih  verstorbene  vater. 

465.  It  is  possible  too  for  many  factors  of  a  secondary  nature  to 
come  into  consideration  for  the  signification  of  grammatical  tenses. 
Since,  for  instance,  an  event  which  has  occurred  commonly  leaves 
traces  of  itself,  it  is  possible  for  the  statement  that  an  event  has 
occurred  to  carry  with  it  the  further  suggestion  of  its  subsequent 
result;  and  this,  strictly  speaking,  accidental  portion  of  the 
meaning  may  become  its  principal  element.  The  result  being 
now,  however,  regarded  as  the  essence  of  the  signification,  the 
signification  of  the  perfect  necessarily  appears  as  present.     Thus 

•  the  disappearance  of  the  regular  present  conduces  to  the  result 

which  is  called  in  the  German  grsLmmars  prateriioprasens. 

466.  The  same  logical   relation  as  that  of  the  present  to  the 

^i.e.,  by  hostile  attacks. 


perfect,  denoting  result,  may  subsist  also  between  distinct  verbs  : 
—  of.  treten  —  stehen,  fallen  —  liegen,  verstummen  —  schweigen, 
erwachen  —  wachen,  entbrennen  —  brennen,  sick  setzen  —  sitzen. 
Since  in  this  case  the  passing  into  a  given  condition,  and  the 
subsistence  in  such  condition,  are  rendered  by  two  different 
linguistic  expressions,  there  are  also  cases  in  which  the  same  verb 
may  denote  both.  In  MHG.  it  is  possible  for  sitzen,  stdn,  ligen, 
szvtgen  to  bear  the  sense  of  sick  setzen,  treten,  sick  legen  or  fallen, 
verstummen ;  cf  NHG.  aufsitzen,  aiefstekn,  abstehn,  etc. ;  and  the 
Modern  Upper  German  use  oi  sitzen.  Consequently  the  mhg.  ich 
bin  gesezzen  and  ich  sitze  may  bear  an  identical  signification. 
Similarly  the  Greek  ^evyco  may  mean  '  I  am  exiled,'  and  aSi,K&,  '  I 
am  wrong.'  Here  too  may  be  cited  cases  in  which  events  belong- 
ing to  the  past  are  denoted  by  the  present  because  their  effect  is 
still  operative  ;  cf  er  lasst  dick  griissen  ;  der  kerr  schickt  mick ;  ich 
kdre,  dass  er  zurUckgekekrt  ist ;  er  sckreibt  mir,  dass  alles  gut  steht, 
etc.  In  the  same  way  the  Greek  aicovco,  Trwddvojicui,  alcr6dvo/j,ai, 
fiavOavm,  etc.  are  used ;  and  other  languages  employ  the  same 

467.  We  have  seen  above  (p.  303)  that  the  modal  and  temporal 
circumstances  are  not  independent  of  each  other.  As  it  is 
characteristic  of  the  imperative  to  denote  a  process  to  be  realised 
in  the  future,  it  is  easy  to  understand  that  the  future  can,- with  the 
aid  of  the  situation  and  of  the  stress  laid  on  the  word  be  under- 
stood as  an  imperative ;  e.g.  you  will  do  it  at  once.  In  the  same 
way  the  future  can  be  optative,  cf.'  sic  me  di  amabunt,  ut  me  tua- 
rum  miseritumst  fortunarum  (Terence).*  In  the  interrogative  */reaa<.in. 
sentences  of  demand  (' frageaufforderungssatzen ')  cf  p.  125  the 
conjunctive  and  the  future  have  the  same  function  ;  cf.  Latin  quid 
faciamus  with  the  Greek  rt  TroLtjaoiiev.  Nay,  the  future  may  be 
employed  even  as  a  potential,  cf  das  wird  sick  so  verkalten,  '  that 




will  be  so ' :  and  similarly  in  Latin  popular  language,  e.g.  haec  erit 
* Trin.-ii:vi.  iono  genere  nata  (PLAUTUS),*cf.  Draeger,  §  136.     The  same  use  is 
common  in  the  Romance  languages,  cf.  Diez,  iii.  282  ;  Matzn.  Fr. 
Gr.  p.  72,  3,  4;  75,  2.     It  is  possible  to  seek  two  different  explana- 
tions for  this  phenomenon.     In  the  first  place,  since  all  that  takes 
place  in  the  future  is  more  or  less  uncertain,  the  signification  of  the 
future  might  have  developed  in  such  a  way  that  nothing  but  the 
factor  of  uncertainty  remained  over.     In  the  second  place,  however, 
we  might  apprehend  a  sentence  like  he  will  be  at  home  t  as  '  it  will 
Low5nd"'°  turn  out  that  he  is  at  home.'     The  French  conditional  is  a  preterite 
to  this  potential  mood.     It  denotes  originally  the  future  process 
from  a  point  of  time  of  the  past,  as,  e.g.,  in  such  a  sentence  as  nous 
convtmnes  que  nous  partirions  le  lendemain.     As  a  strict  conditional 
it  may,  but  need  not  necessarily,  bear  a  future  sense.     In  German 
as  well,  a  future  periphrasis  is  employed  which  has  not  necessarily 
a  future  sense  ;    but  for  this  the  conjunctive  is  employed,  as  ich 
wurde   zufrieden   sein.     As  the  future  has   been    transferred  to  a 
modal  signification,  conversely  in  Latin  the  conjunctive  has  passed 
into  a  future. 

468.  The  tenses  and  moods  have  intrinsically  nothing  to  do 
with  syntax,  and  only  come  to  express  syntactic  relations  owing  to 
their  relationship  to  each  other,  and  consequently  not  till  we  have 
to  deal  with  compound  sentences.  The  distinction  between  Active 
and  Passive,  on  the  other  hand,  is  of  essentially  syntactical  nature, 
since  it  expresses  nothing  else  but  a  differing  relation  of  the  verb 
of  the  predicate  to  the  subject.  That  which  in  the  active  is  the 
object,  is  in  the  passive  the  subject.  Hence  the  employment  of 
the  passive  renders  it  possible  to  make  a  psychological  subject,  \ 
which  otherwise  would  necessarily  take  the  grammatical  form  of 
the  object,   into  the  grammatical  subject  as  well ;  and  this  is  a 


principal  reason  for  the  use  of  the  passive  construction.  In 
impersonal  sentences  it  is  a  matter  of  indifference  whether  the 
active  or  the  passive  is  employed.  The  custom  of  language  has 
ruled  that  words  which  under  normal  circumstances  are  construed 
personally,  are  employed  passively  when  they  are  by  an  exceptional 
usage  employed  impersonally  (cf.  the  German  es  wird  gesungen, 
getanzt,  etc.),  while  in  the  case  of  verbs  which  normally  speaking 
are  used  impersonally,  the  more  simple  active  is  employed  {es 
regnet,  'it  rains,  hails,'  etc.).  There  occur,  however,  points  of 
contact  between  the  active  and  passive  constructions,  cf  der  wald 
rauscht  —  es  rauscht,  das  haus  brennt  —  es  brennt.  In  the  ON. 
Sagas,  we  often  find  in  the  introductions  to  a  division  the  formula 
Mr  segir  '  here  it  says,'  = '  here  is  treated  of.'  [The  same  usage  is 
common  in  Russian.]  In  Middle  Latin  dicit  is  equivalent  to  dicitur 
of  classical  Latin.  In  a  superscription  of  the  OHG.  Isidor  we  find 
hear  quidit  umbi  dhea  bauhnunga  =  hier  wird  gehandelt  von  der 
vorbildlichen  darstellung :  and  similarly  in  other  cases.  The  use 
of  skal  in  ON.  in  the  sense  of  man  soil  {wird),  etc.  is  similar. 

469.  The  contrast  between  active  and  passive  could  not  be 
formed  until  the  separation  between  subject  and  object  had  been 
completed.  Before  this,  in  any  case,  the  simple  juxtaposition  of 
subject  and  predicate  must  have  denoted  the  passive  relation  as 
well  as  the  active.  We  can  still  observe  the  change  between  the 
active  and  passive  signification  in  the  nominal  forms  of  the  verbs, 
which  in  their  manner  of  formation  have  nothing  to  point  to  one 
or  to  the  other. 

470.  The  participle  present  appears  in  archaic  NHG.  frequently 
in  a  passive  sense,  cf  seine  dabei  hegende  verrdterische  absicht 
(Thummel),  dem  in  petto  habenden  gedicht  {ScnilJL^^)  ■,^  especially 
common  are  expressions  like  vorhabende  reise.     In  English  we  say 

'  Cf.  Grimm,  Gr.  iv.  66.     Andr.  Sprg.  82. 


the  horses  are  putting  to,  the  casinos  are  filling,  etc.^  This  passive 
application  is  to  be  apprehended  precisely  as  the  free  addition  of 
the  participle  discussed  supra,  p.  157. 

471.  In  the  case  of  the  so-called  perfect  participle,  it  is  seen 
quite  plainly  that  the  difference  between  active  and  passive  cannot 
consist  in  anything  already  attaching  to  the  formation,  since  the 
participles  of  the  transitive  verbs  are  employed  passively,  and  those 
of  the  intransitives  in  part  actively.  Even  these  limits,  however, 
are  not  invariably  preserved.  There  arise  turns  of  expression  like 
das  den  grafen  befallene  unglUck  (GOETHE),  des  den  erwartungen 
nicht  entsprochenen  anfenthalts  (GUTZKOW) ;  stattgefunden,  and 
stattgehabt  are  tolerably  common.^  Notably,  however,  a  number 
of  participles  of  transitive  verbs  used  in  a  transitive  meaning  have 
passed  into  pure  adjectives,  cf.  erfahren,  verdient,  geschworen, 
gereist,  gelernt,  studiert,  etc.  [in  English  '  learned,'  '  aged,'  etc.]. 

472.  In  Latin  the  passive  sense  does  not  originally  attach  to 
the  participles  in  -endus,  -undtis,  cf.  oriundus,  \volvenda  dies, 
Virgil,  etc.],  by  the  side  of  which  in  older  writers  others  like 
pereundus,  '  dying  out,'  placendus,  '  pleasing,'  etc.,  range  themselves. 

Other  observations  of  a  similar  nature  may  be  made  in  Latin  as 
in  other  languages. 

473.  The  verbal  distinction  of  voice  was  originally  as  foreign  to 
the  infinitive  as  to  the  '  nomina  actionis.'  The  former,  however, 
immediately  approximates  to  the  voice-character,  on  the  one  hand, 
since  an  object-case  is  put  in  dependence  on  it ;  and,  on  the 
other,  since  it  shares  with  the  governing  verb  the  reference  to  the 
subject  of  the  latter  {he  is  able  to  read)  ;  or  further,  to  another  word 
contained  in  the  sentence,  to  which  it  stands  in  no  direct  gram- 
matical relation  (befehlen  steht  ihm  ilbel  an,  durch  fliehen  kann  er 
sich  retten,  etc.).     Such  reference  is  not  in  itself  absolutely  necessary. 

1  Cf.  Miitzner,  ii.  56.  2  Cf.  Andr.  Sprg.  p.  83  sqq. 


None  such,  for  instance,  is  to  be  found  in  such  a  sentence  as  er 
'  befiehlt  zu  schweigen  or  not  lehrt  beten.  In  this  case  the  infinitive 
is  fundamentally  neither  active  nor  passive,  but  voiceless.  In 
Gothic  we  find  not  unfrequently  the  simple  infinitive  standing  in  the 
place  of  the  Greek  infinitive  passive  in  cases. where  the  modern 
Germans  also  employ  the  periphrastic  passive  infinitive  ;  e.g.  ze/«rj> 
^an  gaswiltan  \ainma  unledin  jah  briggan  fram  aggilum  =  iyeveTO 
Be  aiToOavelv  top  TrreB^oj/  koI  a,veve')(drivai  viro  t&v  ayyeXoav,  of. 
Gramm.  iv.  57  sgq.  This  is  natural  when  we  take  notice  of  the 
originally  neutral  nature  of  the  infinitive.  But  on  the  other  side 
it  is  equally  intelligible  that  the  want  felt  in  the  individual  IE. 
languages  led  by  gradual  but  inevitable  steps  to  the  creation  of 
a  passive  infinitive.  The  necessity  for  the  employment  of  such 
naturally  made  itself  most  felt  in  the  case  of  those  languages  in 
which  the  accusative  has  developed  into  the  subject-case  of  the 

474.  A  grammatical  passive  exists  only  in  cases  where  such 
passive  has  been  formed  from  the  same  stem  as  the  active,  and  has 
been  separated  therefrom  by  a  special  method  of  formation.  The 
relation  of  an  intransitive  to  the  corresponding  causative  is 
approximately  analogous  to  the  relation  of  the  passive  to  the 
active,  cf.  fallen — fallen,  hangen  —  hdngen,  and  the  pairs  from 
unrelated  roots,  warden  —  machen,  sterben  —  tddien,  (kin)  fallen — 
{hui)  werfen.  The  difiference,  however,  consists  in  this,  that  in  the 
case  of  the  intransitive,  an  operative  agency  is  not  contemplated  as 
normally  as  in  the  case  of  the  passive.  This  difference  is  therefore 
easily  cancelled.  In  Greek  the  phrase  is  allowed,  aTrodv^a-Keiv  vvo 
nvo^.  In  Latin  Jio  is  employed  in  the  present  simply  as  the 
passive  offacio.  In  no  other  way  than  this  are  the  periphrases  for 
the  passive  by  means  pf  werden  and  sein  intelligible.  On  the  other 
hand,  the  so-called  deponents   show  us  the  transition  from  the 


passive  to  the  active.  These  cannot  justifiably  be  placed  in  a 
separate  category  from  the  proper  passive  or  middle  voice  by  the 
circumstance  that  they  have  to  be  translated  by  the  active  in  a 
foreign  language.  On  the  other  hand,  we  have  to  take  into  con- 
sideration the  entire  loss  of  the  active  which  originally  belongs  to 
them,  and  what  is  still  more  important,  a  method  of  construction 
which  commonly  falls  only  to  the  active  ;  thus  especially  the  con- 
nexion with  an  accusative  of  the  object. 

475.  One  of  the  most  ordinary  ways  in  which  the  passive  takes 
its  origin  is  from  the  middle  voice,  which  on  its  side  is  capable  of 
being  formed  from  the  composition  of  the  active  with  the  reflexive 
pronoun.  [Cf  French  se  ■marier,  the  Scand.  -sk,  etc.,  the  Russian 
way  of  forming  the  passive  in  -sa,  and  possibly  the  Latin  form 
in  -ier?^  The  exact  process  is  that  one  element  in  the  significa- 
tion of  the  middle  disappears.  The  middle  involves  at  once  the 
origin  of  an  action  in  the  subject  and  its  return  thither  :  the  passive, 
the  latter  only.  In  the  case  of  many  reflexive  combinations  in 
NHG.,  the  consciousness  of  an  activity  of  the  subject  has  likewise 
disappeared  ;  but  they  approximate  more  to  the  simple  intransi- 
tive owing  to  the  relationship  which  exists  between  this  and  the 
passive ;  cf  sich  regen,  ausdehnen,  drehen,  teilen ;  sich  freuen, 
schdmen,  verwundern,  irren,  etc.  Still  more  completely  is  every 
active  operation  of  the  subject  excluded  in  sichfinden,  befinden,  in 
expressions  like  das  Idsst  sich  koren,  es  Idsst  sick  da  gut  leben,  das 
hort  sich  gut  an,  hier  tanzt  es  sich  sehr  leicht. 

1  See  however  King  &  Cookson's  Sounds  and  Inflections,  p.  443. 


Page  297. — Ni  shdun,  etc.      Nor  shall  children  hoard  for  fathers,  but  fathers  for 

Page  298.— Swey  gesihi,  etc.     Whoever  sees  the  lovely  otff,  to  him  must  she  he  well 

pleasing,  so  that  they  praise  her  virtue. 
Page  298. — Das  iesUcher,  etc.     That  each  knight  sat  in  his  saddle  and  arranged  their 





WE  have  already  seen,  in  Chapter  VI.,  that  the  distribution  of  The  diver- 
a  sentence, — the  manner  in  which  we  combine  elements  psycholo- 
gical and 
in  larger  or  smaller  groups, — admits  of  being  readily  modified.     It  grammatical 


was  likewise  hinted  there  that  the  psychological  (or  logical)  relation 
of  the  elements  among  themselves,  and  their  purely  grammatical 
relation,  may  be  in  absolute  conflict.  The  syntactical  forms  (e.g. 
the  cases)  arise,  in  the  first  instance,  in  connexion  with  definite 
elements  of  the  sentence, — such  as  subject,  object,  determination 
of  a  substantive,  etc.  But  they  express  at  the  same  time  a  more 
specific  mutual  relation  than  can  be  expressed  by  the  mere  juxta- 
position of  the  several  words.'  Now  the  use  of  this  method  of  mere 
specific  expression,  while  the  old  free  combination  of  notions, 
which  can  never  be  wholly  abolished,  still  prevails,  produces  a 
contradiction,  which  in  its  turn,  if  it  becomes  '  usual,'  gives  rise  to 
new  constructions.  The  departure  from  the  external  form  of 
grammar  here  consists  partly  in  a  different  way  of  grouping  and 
detaching  the  single  elements,  partly  in  a  different  psychological 
arrangement  of  them,  by  which  subject,  predicate,  object,  etc., 
change  functions. 

477.  Duality  of  elements  is,  as  we  have  seen,  the  primitive  form  Duality  and 


of  the  sentence.     Even  the  fullest  sentences  admit  of  being  so  of  dements. 
constructed,  the  whole  of  the  supplementary  matter  being  thrown 


312         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

into  extensions  of  the  two  elements.  But  it  is  possible  for  the 
determinants  of  the  predicate,  the  nearer  and  remoter  object,  the 
determinants  of  place  and  time,  to  likewise  obtain  the  value  of 
independent  members,  so  that  a  multipHcity  of  members  arises. 
Conversely,  this  multiplicity  may  itself  give  rise  to  a  simple  pair, 
several  members  being  grouped  in  one  without  regard  to  the 
distribution  which  would  be  demanded  by  the  historical  develop- 
ment of  the  mode  of  sentence  in  question.  If  we  indicate  the 
subject  by  a,  the  predicate  by  b,  the  determinants  of  the  latter  by 
Greek  letters,  and  the  single  groups  by  brackets,  we  should  have 
as  our  fundamental  scheme  {d){baP'^h),  and  beside  it  {a){b){a){^) 
(7)(S).  Hence  can  develop  schemes  such  as  (aba^yXS)  or 
{aba^B){y),  etc.,  or  again  (a)(ba^y)(B),  (a){ba0B)(y),  etc.,  and  others 
beside.  The  violation  of  the  original  distribution  can  go  even  yet 
further,  determinants  of  the  subject  being  likewise  detached  from 
it  and  combined  with  other  elements ;  and  those  of  the  object  in 
the  same  way,  etc. 

478.  Multiplicity  of  elements,  resulting  from  an  approximate 

equality  in  the  value  of  each,  occurs  especially  in  calm,  connected 

exposition.     Ordinary  conversation  Always  tends  to  sentences  of 

two  or  three  elements  only. 

The  Psycho-        479.  The  element  most  sharply  distinguished  from  the  rest  is 

logic3,l  Pre- 

dicate.  in  the  first  place,  the  psychological  predicate,  as  being  the  most 
important  of  all,  containing  as  it  does  that  which  it  is  the  final  aim 
of  the  sentence  to  communicate,  and  on  which  therefore  the 
strongest  emphasis  is  laid.  The  sentence  Charles  drives  to-morrow 
to  London  can  be  conceived  as  of  four  members  in  case  it  is  spoken  ' 
to  a  wholly  unprepared  hearer,  to  whom  all  its  several  elements  are 
therefore  alike  new.  We  can  then  say  equally  well  that  three  dis- 
tinct predicates  are  attached  to  the  subject  Charles;  or,  perhaps 
more  correctly,  that  to  the  subject  Charles  is  attached  the  predi- 


cate  drives,  to  the  subject  Charles  drives  the  predicate  to-morrow 
and  to  the  subject  Charles  drives  to-morrow  the  predicate  to 
London.  Here  the  last  determinant  is  no  doubt  somewhat,  but 
only  slightly,  more  emphasised  than  the  rest.  On  the  other  hand, 
where  the  mental  disposition  of  the  hearer  is  previously  defined  in 
a  manner  known  to  the  speaker,  each  of  the  four  members  may 
become  a  sharply  emphasised  predicate.  If  Charles'  journey  to- 
morrow has  already  been  discussed,  and  only  its  goal  remains 
uncertain,  then  to  London  is  the  predicate.  We  might  then  ex- 
press it  otherwise — the  goal  of  the  journey  which  Charles  makes 
to-morrow  is  London.  If  his  journey  to  London  has  been  men- 
tioned, and  only  the  time  was  indefinite,  then  to-morrow  is 
predicate,  and  we  might  express  it — Charles'  journey  to  London 
takes  place  to-morrow.  If  it  is  known  that  Charles  will  travel  to 
London  to-morrow,  but  not  whether  he  will  walk  or  drive  there, 
the  predicate  lies  in  drives.  But  we  could  not  exactly  say  that 
drives  is  psychological  predicate  in  accordance  with  the  gram- 
matical form  ;  it  is  rather  to  be  split  into  two  elements,  a  general 
verb  of  motion  and  a  determinant  to  this  verb  indicating  the 
species  of  motion ;  and  only  the  latter  is  predicate.  If,  finally,  it 
is  known  that  some  one  is  driving  to  London  to-morrow,  it  is  only 
doubtful  who,  then  the  grammatical  subject  Charles  is  the  psycho- 
logical predicate,  and  we  can  say  equally  well — the  person  who  is 
driving  to-morrow  to  London  is  Charles. 

480.  As  opposed  to  the  psychological  predicate,  all  the  other  psychologi- 
cal subject 

elements  of  the  sentence  can  be  conceived  as  subject,  as  is  clear  and  w/»/<j. 
from  the  above  examples.  But  it  is  also  possible  for  a  single 
element  to  stand  prominently  out  as  subject,  in  which  case  it 
approaches  most  nearly  in  importance,  and  therefore  in  emphasis, 
to  the  predica^te.  The  other  elements  then  appear  as  copulse, 
which  serve  to  connect  the  subject  and  predicate,  and  to  define 


the  precise  nature  of  their  connexion.  Thus,  in  psychological 
analysis,  the  predicate  of  the  sentence  Mary  has  toothache  is  not 
has  but  toothache,  while  has  is  only  a  copula ;  in  the  sentence  John 
is  accustomed  to  walk  very  fast,  in  the  same  way,  the  predicate  is 
very  fast,  is  accustomed  to  walk  being  a  copula;  in  he  gesticulated 
like  one  possessed,  like  one  possessed  is  i^xz^\c's.\.^,  gesticulated  copula. 
481.  Every  member  of  a  sentence,  in  whatever  grammatical 
form  it  may  appear,  is  capable,  from  a  psychological  point  of 
view,  of  being  subject,  predicate,  or  copula,  or  a  constituent  of  any 
of  them.  Subject  and  predicate  can  be  indicated  by  position  as 
well  as  by  emphasis.  In  German,  wherever  the  place  at  the  head 
of  the  sentence,  normally  assigned  to  the  subject,  is  occupied  by 
another  element,  this  is  either  a  logical  subject  or  a  logical  pre- 
dicate, the  former  more  often  than  the  latter.  In  the  latter  case 
this  part  of  the  sentence  is  also  the  most  strongly  emphasised, 
but  not  in  the  former.  The  view,  frequently  met  with,  that  the 
position  at  the  head  of  the  sentence  always  serves  to  emphasise  ' 
above  all  others  the  element  which  occupies  that  place,  is  there- 
fore wholly  wrong. 
Elements  482.  When    a   demonstrative,  referring   back  to  a  previously 

regularly  expresscd  substantive,  occurs  at  the  beginning  of  a  sentence,  it 
Mi'subj^l't  is  ^s  a  rule  the  psychological  subject,  or  a  portion  thereof  For 
St  Pre  icttte.  .^  yifj-ue  of  this  rctrospective  reference,  it  represents  the  idea 
from  which  the  thought  of  both  speaker  and  hearer  proceeds, 
and  to  which  what  follows  is  attached  as  new  information  ;  cf  ick 
traf  einen  knaben,  den  fragte  ich  ; — dem  sagte  ich  \ — bei  dem  erkun-  | 
digte  ich  m.ich  ; — dariiber  war  ich  erfreut ;  or  ich  ging  nach  hause,  da 
fand  ich  einen  brief;  ich  sah  ihn  am.  sonntag  zum  letzten  male, 
damals  sagte  er  mir ;  or  Fritz  war  gestern  bei  m,ir ;  diesen  menschen 
■mdchte  ich  immer  zum  hause  hinaus  werfen ;  aber  ich  viuss  ruck- 
sicht  auf  seine  faniilie  nehmen ;    aus  diesem  gninde  kann    ich  es 


nicht.  In  the  same  way  the  relative  is  regularly  psychological 
subject.  The  interrogative,  on  the  other  hand,  is  regularly  a 
predicate,  or  a  portion  of  it.  For  the  indefinite  use  of  it  in  the 
question,  the  answer  substitutes  a  definite  one.  Hence,  if  Cicero 
says,  quam  utilitatem  aut  quern  fructum  petentes  scire  cupimus  ilia  ? 
or  tu  vero  quibus  rebus  gestis,  quo  hoste  superato  contionein  convocare 
ausus  es? — the  psychological  predicate  lies  not  in  the  finite  verb 
but  in  the  participle  and  its  appendages.  Further,  every  element 
of  a  sentence,  the  connexion  of  which  with  the  rest  is  denied 
by  means  of  a  negative  particle,  is  invariably  a  psychological 
predicate ;  cf.  nicht  ihn  habe  ich  gerufen  = '  the  person,  whom  I 
have  called,  is  not  he  ; '  nicht  ihm  habe  ich  das  geld  gegeben  —  '  the 
person,  to  whom  I  have  given  money,  is  not  he,'  etc.  The  nega- 
tion belongs,  therefore,  though  not  invariably,  to  the  grammatical, 
yet  invariably  to  the  psychological  predicate,  or,  to  speak  more 
properly,  it  invariably  relates  to  the  connexion  of  the  psycho- 
logical subject  with  the  psychological  predicate.  It  follows,  of 
course,  that  the  adversative  clause  which  is  placed  in  line  with  the 
negated  element  is  also  a  predicate ;  e.g.  nicht  am  morgen,  sondern 
am  mittag  will  ich  verreisen.  Further,  every  element  which  is 
emphasised  by  a  nur,  allein,  ausschliesslich,  only,  exclusively,  or  the 
like,  for  they  can  be  replaced  by  not  another;  but  besonders,  vor 
allem,  especially,  above  all,  mostly^  etc.,  are  also  marks  of  the 

4.8^.  The  discrepancy  between  grammatical  and  psychological  The 

"    *^  ^  Discrepancy 

predicate    may   be   avoided    by   a   more   circumstantial   form   of  avoided  by 

^  ^  Periphrasis. 

expression,  which  in  many  languages  is  abundantly  resorted  to  ; 
Christen  sind  es,  die  das  getan  haben,  or  von  denen  man  das  verlangt ; 
English,  'tis  thou  that  robbst  me  of  my  /(7r^;*French,  dest  moi  qui,  etc. ;  hI"!  vifi"" 


cest  d  vous  queje  m'adresse  ;  English,  it  is  to  you,  young  people,  that 

I  speak  ;-t  German,  was  ihn  am  meisten  drgerie,  war  ihre  gleich-  ne?u.^\t8. 


giiltigkeit ;  English,  what  I  most  prize  in  woman,  is  her  affections, 
* ,i'°"s-       not  her  intellect* 


484.  A  familiar  expedielit  in  German  for  converting  into  a 

subject  what  would  otherwise  be  the  grammatical  predicate,  is  the 

periphrasis  with  tun  ;  cf  verbieten  tut  es  niemand. 

rhe  485.  In  many  languages  we  find  the  conflict  of  grammatical 

sU^inaud.    and  psychological  subject  solved  in  the  following  interesting  way:t 

tQCMatz-    the  psychological  subject  is  put  first  in  the  nominative,  i.e.  in  the 

ner  iii.  p.  25. 

form  proper  to  the  grammatical  subject,  and  is  then  resumed  by 
fekek,  »™r  a  pronoun,  the  form  of  which  is  determined  solely  by  its  gram- 

i.  176. 

matical  function  -^  cf  ein  eichkranz,  ewig  Jung  delaubt,  den  setzt  die 
nachwelt  ihm  aufs  haupt  (GOETHE) ;  French,  cette  confiance,  il 
I'avait  expriinie ;  Italian,  gli  amid  vostri  non  gli  conosco ;  MHG. 
rUem.cere  unde  lUgencBre,  swd  die  sin,  den  verbiute  ich  mtnen  sane; 
Spanish,  claro  i  virtuoso  principe,  tanto  esta  sciencia  le  plugo; 
Greek,  eKelvov  Se  oii  Seoaco  avTw  ovSev ;  MHG.  die  Hiunen  durck 
ir  haz  der  garte  sich  zwei  tilsent ;  French,  tous  ces  crimes  d'itat 
qu'on  fait  pour  la  couronne,  le  del  nous  en  absout ;  Italian,  quelli  eke 
hanno  costituita  una  republica,  tra  le  cose  ordinate  da  loro  e  state 
(Machiavelli)  ;  Greek,  to  /irjSev  clkovto,  riva  i^a'Trarf/a-ai 
fieya  fiepo<;  ets  tovto  r)  r&v  ■)(^pri/j,dTa)v  KTrjcri's  ^Vfi^aXXeTM 
(Plato)  ;  ach,  der  hdligste  von  unsern  trieben,  warum  quillt  aus 
iJiin  die grimme pein  f  (SCHILLER).  The  possessive  pronoun  here 
takes  the  place  of  a  genitive :  MHG.  Parzivdl  der  valschheitswant 
sin  triuwe  in  Urte;  English,  'tis  certain,  that  every  man  that  dies 
ill,  the  ill  is  upon  his  own  head  (John,  iv.  I.) ;  Spanish,  la  villa  sin 
regidores,  su  triunfo  sera  breve  ;  French,  les  soudans,  qu'd  genoux  cet 
univers  contemple,  leurs  usages,  leurs  droits  ne  sont  point  man 
exemple  (Voltaire).  A  similar  phenomenon  occurs  when  an 
attribute  to  the  psychological  subject  appears  in  the  nominative;  ■ 
cf    Greek,   hiacTKoirmv    koX    Sia\ey6/j,evo^    avrw    eSofe  /j,oi    ovto^  o 


avrip     (Plato);*    eBo^ev    auTot?    a-iroKTeivai,     rov<}     MiiTeX7;i/atou?  sg /" '  ^™" 
eiTiKaXovvrei  ttjv  air6a-ra<riv  (Thuc.)  ;;|;  iradova-a  ovto)   Seiva  vpo';  <^«-  ■5>«. 
rS>v  (fxXraTCDV  ov8el<;  iirep  jmov  Baiaovav  uTjvUrai,  (Aesch.);§  French, '  "'•  3«. 

§  Eum.  loo, 

depuis  deux  jours,  Fatime,  absent  de  ce  palais,  enfin  son  iendre  amour  '°"' 
le  rend  a  mes  souhaits  (Voltaire). 

486.  A  still  more  complete  elimination  of  the  discrepancy- 
consists  in  simply  giving  to  the  psychological  the  form  of  the 
grammatical  subject,  i.e.  in  putting  it  in  the  nominative.  On  the 
Rhine  they  say,  according  to  Andresen,  Sprachgebrauch  80,  es 
geben  dies  jahr  nicht  viele  dpfel.  The  nominative  is  used  in  the 
same  way,  according  to  Hildebrand,  D  Wb.  4,  \a,  1404,  in  Strass- 
burg,  Osterlande,  Thtiringen,  and  Hesse.  Andresen  adduces  from 
literary  German,  es  gibt  nichts  Idcherlicheres  als  ein  verliebter  mann 
(Borne).  Even  Goethe  {Derjunge  Goethe,  ii.  465)  says  :  mUssen 
es  hier  menschen  gebtn  ;  and  Herder,  giebts  aber  keine  andere  emp- 
findbarkeit  zu  trdnen  als  kbrperlicher  schmerzf  In  the  last  case, 
therefore,  at  least,  the  comparison  is  treated  as  if  it  belonged 
to  a  grammatical  subject. 

487.  Adverbial  determinants,  which  commonly,  as  the  name  psycho- 
shows,  are  simply  attached  to  the  predicative  verb,  play  in  reality  mentof 

,  r     1  /-\         ■{  Adverbial, 

very  various  parts  m  the  structure  of  the  sentence.  On  the  one  Deur. 
hand  they  are  really  verb-determinants  ;  e.g.  Charles  eats  slowly ; 
das  kind  zappelt  mit  hdnden  und  fiissen.  If,  then,  the  essential 
point  of  the  communication  lies  in  the  adverbial  determinant,  this 
can  be  treated  as  the  predicate,  and  the  verb  as  copula  between 
.it  and  the  subject.  But  the  distribution  may  also  be  of  this 
nature,  that  the  adverb  serves  to  define  the  combination  of  the 
other  members  of  the  sentence.  No  sharp  boundary  between  this 
and  the  first-described  distribution  can  be  laid  down.  All  tem- 
poral, local,  and  causal  determinants  can  be  referred  to  this  class. 
These  constitute,  in  antithesis  to  the  other  elements  of  the  sen- 

3i8         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

tence,  as  a  rule  the  psychological  subject,  sometimes  the  predicate  ; 
cf.  to-morrow  evening  I  will  visit  you  ;  on  the  table  lie  two  books ; 
the  books  lie  not  on  the  table  but  in  the  box.  But  here  the  verb 
is  always  subordinated  in  such  a  way  that  it  can  be  equally 
well  conceived  as  a  copula.  On  the  other  hand,  there  are  certain 
cases  in  which  the  adverb  can  only  be  conceived  as  a  predicate 
attached  to  an  already  completed  sentence.  To  this  head  belong 
all  expressions  of  modality,  such  as  certainly,  assuredly,  truly 
in  any  case,  probably,  doubtless,  perhaps,  hardly.  He  will  certainly 
come  is  equivalent  to  it  is  certain  that  he  will  come.  Further,  such 
expressions  as  unfortunately,  otherwise,  under  these  circumstances, 
on  this  condition,  German  vorkommenden  falls,  leider,  sonst,  etc. ; 
also,  in  German,  torichterweise,  and  all  other  forms  in  -weise,  which 
are  distinguished  just  in  this  point  from  the  simple  adverbs  toricht, 
etc. ;  the  latter  refer  to  the  predicate,  the  former  to  the  relation 
between  subject  and  predicate.  The  attempt  to  give  clear  gram- 
matical expression  to  the  logical  relation  has  led  to  such  German 
phrases  as  kaum,  dass  er  mich  ansieht;  vielleicht,  dass  eine  trdne 
dann  von  seinem,  auge  fdllt  (frequent  in  the  last  century) ;  gluck-  ' 
licherweise,  dass  die  gemdlde  so  hoch  stehen  (GOETHE).  Expres- 
sions of  assurance,  occurring  alone  in  the  first  place — e.g.  gewiss, 
er  wird  es  tun — are  obviously  predicates  to  the  independent 
sentences  which  follow. 
Rarity  of  488.  In  languages  of  slight  formal  development  the  discrepancy    | 

Discrepancy  3 

ofdl°fr^''^  between  psychological  and  grammatical  subject  or  predicate  is 
Devdop-  far  more  rare  ;  for  this  is  occasioned  precisely  by  the  growth  of  a 
manifold  special  form  of  expression  for  the  various  logical  relations 
of  notions  among  themselves.  The  remarkable,  and  to  us  very  i 
singular,  forms  of  expression  in  Dajak,  adduced  by  Steinthal, 
Typen,  p.  172,  3,  seem  to  me  to  rest  essentially  on  the  following 
processes.      The  psychological   subject  or  predicate  is  made  the 



grammatical  subject  or  predicate  likewise ;  whence  either  the 
former  or  the  latter  is  put  in  the  first  place;  and  these  two 
main  members  are  thus,  if  originally  compound,  distributed  on 
the  same  principle.  Compare  especially,  in  Steinthal's  translation, 
the  following:  boat  this  boat  of  his  choice  =  ' this  is  the  boat 
he  has  chosen';  witness  two  these  which  thy  desire  =  '  ■which 
of  these  two  witnesses  desirest  thou  ? '  thou  place  of  my  giving= 
'  it  is  to  you  that  I  have  given  it ' ;  too  much  to  it  moved  be 
bench  by  thee  (zu  sehr  ihr  geschoben  sein  bank  durch  dich)=' thou 
hast  moved  the  bench  too  much '  (where  too  much  is  the  psycho- 
logical predicate).  Cf  with  this  the  Arabic  construction  Omar  dead 
his  father=' Omz.r's  father  is  dead'  (Steinthal,  Typen,  271),  which 
-further  corresponds  with  the  IE.  constructions  adduced  above  (p.  316). 

489.  The   same   inversion   which   marks   the   relation   of  the  change  of 


psychological,  in  comparison  with  the  grammatical,  subject  and  between  the 


predicate,  may  occur  also  in  the  relation  of  the  determinant  to  ^inant  and 

the  Detev' 

the  determinate.  The  case  where  it  is  least  easy  to  decide  which  minatc. 
of  two  members  is  the  true  determinant,  and  which  the  true 
determinate,  is  that  of  two  substantives  in  apposition.  I  can 
say,  e.g.,  Totila,  a  king  of  the  Ostrogoths,  or  a  king  of  the  Ostro- 
goths, Totila.  Such  a  change  of  rdles  is,  however,  only  possible 
when  the  relation  of  the  two  members  is  a  somewhat  loose  one, 
a  condition  of  which  is,  that  it  is  communicated  as  a  piece  of 
new  information.  Then  the  whole  combination  approximates 
to  the  nature  of  a  sentence,  and  the  first  member  is  related  to 
that  which  follows  as  subject  to  predicate.  If,  on  the  other  hand, 
the  relation  is  assumed  to  be  already  known,  no  arbitrary  exchange 
of  roles  is  possible,  and  the  order  decides  nothing.  If,  for  in- 
stance, a  certain  Mendelssohn  is  in  question,  and  some  one  asks  : 
'  What  Mendelssohn  is  meant  ? '  in  the  reply,  '  the  composer 
Mendelssohn,'   Mendelssohn  is  undoubtedly  the  determinate,  not 


the  determinant,  in  spite  of  its  not  standing  first.  Similarly,  in 
Queen  Anne,  Mr.  Smith,  brother  John,  the  proper  nouns  are  the 
determinates,  the  titles  and  other  defining  epithets  the  deter- 
minants. There  also  occurs,  however,  where  no  previous  know- 
ledge of  the  relation  can  be  assumed,  a  closer  combination  of 
the  two  members  with  addition  of  the  definite  articles;  e.g.  the 
master-tailor  Thomson.  Here  the  article  belongs,  not  to  the 
first  member,  but  to  the  whole,  and  by  this  very  means  binds 
it  together  in  a  unity.  For  we  cannot  say,  instead  of  this, 
Thomson  the  master-tailor,  but,  at  most,  Thomson  a  master-tailor ; 
or,  in  German,  omitting  the  article,  e.g.  Schulze  schneidermeister, 
when  a  further  determinant  follows,  e.g.  in  Berlitt.  '  But  this 
alteration  would  relax  the  closeness  of  the  combination,  and 
the  whole  expression  would  accordingly  have  a  different  force. 
In  this  construction,  then,  neither  element  is  distinctly  determinant 
or  determinate.  To  the  more  closely-connected  appositional 
relations  belongs  also  the  combination  of  Christian  and  surname. 
It  is  indubitable  that,  at  the  present  day,  in  John  Smith,  Peter 
Robinson,  Henry  English,  etc.,  the  Christian  name  is  the  deter- 
minant, the  family  name  the  determinate ;  it  is  equally  certain 
that  originally  the  converse  was  the  case.  There  has  occurred 
here,  therefore,  a  displacement  of  the  distribution. 

490.  An  adjectival  attribute  cannot  thus  simply  change  rble 
with  its  substantive.  We  must  here,  however,  refer  to  a  very 
frequent  construction,  in  which,  undoubtedly,  the  principal  notion 
is  deposited  in  the  adjective.  When  Grimm  says  jenes 
heranzuziehen  untersagt  die  mangelnde  lautverschiebung,  we  must, 
if  we  would  make  the  grammatical  form  logical,  transpose  the 
distribution,  but  at  the  same  time  introduce  a  further  change  of 
construction :  der  mangel  der  lautverschiebung.  Cf.  the  list  of , 
examples  in  Andresen,  Spr.  p.  122,  3. 


491.  A  displacement  of  quite  another  kind  appears  in  such 
phrases  as  ein  sein  wollendes original {Yi.'£.KT)'E^,  so  viele  sein  wollende 
kenner  (Ebert  to  Lessing),  sein  sollende* griechische  simflicitdt  *  =  ^ 
(Iffland)  ;  ein  gewesener  soldat,  ein  sogenanter  vetter,  and  the  like ;  simpifdty. 
Fr.  un  nomm^  Richard.  Here  the  substantives,  which  are  properly 
predicates  of  unnamed  subjects,  have  taken  the  place  of  these 
subjects,  and  accordingly  determined  the  form  of  the  participle 

also.  In  cases,  again,  like  sein  frUherer  {ehemaliger)  herr,  seine 
spdtere  {zukUnftige)  frau,  der  angebliche  baron,  the  substantives  are 
really  predicates. 

492.  When  the  separation  of  elements  which  grammatically  Separation  of 


belong   closely  together  has   become  '  usual,'   new  constructions  grammati- 
cally con- 
arise,  of  which  we  are  no  longer  at  liberty  to  say  that  they  still  nected. 

exhibit  the  discrepancy  between  the  grammatical  and  the  logical 

distribution  to  which  they  certainly  owe  their  origin.     A  relation 

in  origin  purely  psychological  has  developed  into  a  grammatical 


493.  Thus  the  genitive  frequently  detaches  itself  from  immediate  Genitwe  and 


connexion  with  the  word  on  which  it  primarily  depended  ;  where  it 
is  dependent  on  a  predicative  adjective,  the  combination  is  never 
very  close,  and  it  is  immaterial  whether  we  treat  it  as  dependent 
on  the  adjective  alone  or  on  the  adjective  together  with  its  copula. 
It  enjoys  therefore  a  similar  degree  of  independence  to  that  of  an 
object  depending  on  a  verb,  and  the  same  freedom  of  varying  its 
position.  Cf.  des  erfolges  bin  ich  sicker  ('  of  success  I  am  certain '). 
Now  in  German  the  genitive  es,  which  is  frequently  dependent  on 
combinations  of  this  kind,  has  become  phonetically  coincident  with 
the  accusative  (MHG.  ez),  and  accordingly  has  been  accepted  as 
such  by  the  linguistic  sense  :  cf  ich  bin  es  zufrieden.  Furthermore, 
in  some  cases  the  genitive  nichts  of  the  MHG.  niht  has  been 
traditionally  preserved,  which  was  also  inevitably  treated  as  an 



accusative :  cf.  ich  bin  mir  nichts  bases  bewusst.  These  circum- 
stances have  facilitated,  but  hardly  been  the  sole  cause  of,  the 
further  substitution  in  many  cases  of  the  accusative — the  objective 
case  KaT  i^o-x^ijv — for  the  genitive  conceived  as  an  objective 
case ;  a  substitution  precisely  parallel  to  that  which  has  occurred 
in  so  many  verbs, — e.g.  erwdhnen,  vergessen,  etc.  Cf  was  ich 
mir  kaum  nock  bewusst  war  (Wieland)  ;  sind  sie  das  zufrieden  ? 
(Goethe),  frequently ;  wir  sind  die  probe  zufrieden  (RUCKERT)  ; 
das  bin  ich  vollkommen  iiberzeugt  (Lessing)  ;  so  viel  bin  ich  versichert 
(Lessing)  ;  ingedenk  zu  sein  die  bescheen  fragen  (WeisTUMER). 
The  accusative  is  frequent  with  habhaft  werden,  universal  with 
gewahr  werden,  gewohnt,  los,  iiberdriissig,  schuldig  sein  or  werden. 
What  is  true  of  the  adjective  applies  naturally  also  to  the 
predicative  adverb,  hence  inne  werden  is  now  used  with  accu- 
sative. The  substitution  of  the  accusative  is  in  any  case  favoured 
by  the  fact  that  sentences  in  dass  can  be  made  dependent  on  such 
combinations  {ich  bin  \es\  zufrieden,  dass  du  ihn  besuchst),  and 
treated  as  the  object.  In  many  of  these  combinations  we  have 
only  evidence  of  the  accusative  of  a  pronoun.  This  shows  the 
influence  of  the  es.  But  it  is  clear  from  analogous  cases  in  Greek 
Cyr.  m.  that  the  process  is  possible  even  where  it  is  not  thus  facilitated, 
e.g.    iiria-TriiJ.ovet;    rjaav    to,    irpocnjKovra     (XeN.),*  e'^api/o?    el/ii,   ra 

t  C/.  Peile's   ,  ,  ._  ,    . 

Fr.  of  Phil.   6/3<0Ta)/X6I/a  (rLATO).T 
vii.  5. 

Gemti-vc  and        494.  The  naturally  closer  combination  of  genitive  with  a  sub- 


stantive  is  likewise  in  many  cases  relaxed,  through  its  being  made 
logically  dependent  no  longer  on  the  substantive  alone,  but  on  the 
combination  of  the  substantive  with  a  verb,  and  thus  becoming  an 
independent  element  of  the  sentence.  This  is  very  common  in 
MHG.  ;  e.g.  des  wirdet  mir  buoz  ('  I  have  a  remedy  thence ') ;  des  han 
ich  guoten  willen  ;  des  sU  cine  sorge ;  si  wurden  des  ze  rdte ;  ich  kume 
eines  dinges  an  ein  ende  {'  I  learn  something  with  perfect  precision '). 

111.  g, 


Cf.  NHG.  des  Idrmens  ist  kein  ende;  alter  guten  dingesinddrei;  lass, 
vater,genug  sein  des  grausamen  spiels  (Schiller)  ;  nun  will  ich  des 
briefs  ein  ende  niachen  (SCHILLER) ;  des  ich  ein  diener  warden  bin 
(Luther) ;  dieses  gerechten,  welches  ihr  nun  verrdter  und  in'drder 
geworden  seid  (Luther)  ;  ein  schiff,  dessen  man,  so  es  vortiber  ist, 
keine  spur  finden  kann  (Luther)  ;  den  leichten  erwdhnungen,  die 
seiner  einige  alte  grammdtiker  tun  (Lessing).  For  the  most  part 
we  have  now  to  use  a.  preposition  for  the  MHG.  genitive.  But 
here  also  the  genitive  es  was  misinterpreted  and  treated  as 
nominative  or  accusative,  so  that  the  logical  subject  became 
unreservedly  the  grammatical  also.  Cf.  es  ist  genug  {yiUG.  genuoc 
as  substantive  taking  the  genitive),  es  ist  not,  es  ist  zeit,  etc. ;  er 
will  es  nicht  wort  haben ;  er  weiss  es  ihni  dank.  But  the  displace- 
ment of  distribution  has  had  this  further  consequence,  that  the 
genitive  has  been  replaced  by  the  nominative  or  accusative,  a 
change  to  which  the  dependent  sentences  in  dass,  conceived  as 
subject  or  object,  doubtless  contributed.  We  now  say  das  nimmt 
mick  wunder  as  well  as  das  wundert  mich  ;  MHG.  has  des  nimet  mich 
wunder=-'  wonder  about  it  seizes  me.'  Examples  for  the  accu- 
sative are  wer  wird  ihm  diese  kleine  iippigkeit  nich  vielmehr  dank 
wissen  ?  (LesSING)  ;  was  er  mir  schuld  gibt  (LesSING,  and  similar 
phrases  elsewhere)  ;  in  ansehung  der  stdrke  wird  niemand  diese 
assertion  in  abrede  sein  (Lessing,  cf.  Bliimner's  note  in  his  edition 
of  the  Laokoon,  2d  edition,  p.  588).  Wahrnehmen  (mhg.  war= 
'  observation ')  is  now  treated  as  a  simple  conception,  and  invariably 
constructed  with  an  accusative.  Cf.  constructions  in  Latin  such  as 
quid  tibi  hanc  tactiost  (PlaUT.),*  quid  tibi  hanc  curatiost  rem  (ib.) ,  in  *^^'""'-  ^- ' 
which  the  accusative  cannot  be  conceived  as  depending  solely  on 
the  substantive ;  further  infitias  ire,  auctorem  esse  aliquid.  Also 
GR.  %v  fiev  -rrpcoTa  aol  fjiOfKpnv  e^ft)  (EURIP.),  and  the  like.i 

495.  In  the  languages  which  use  a  word  originally  substantive 
i[C/ Thompson's  Greek  Syntax,  p.  77,  note  2,  for  further  instances.] 


to  express,  or  to  strengthen  the  expression  of,  negation,  we  find  in 
connexion  with  it  a  genitive  which,  originally  dependent  on  it, 
has  gradually  passed  into  an  independent  member  of  the  sentence, 
and  now  serves  as  subject  or  object,  while  the  word  on  which  it 
originally  depended  has  lost  its  substantival  nature.  Cf.  Fr.  il  lia 
pas  {point)  d' argent ;  properly,  '  he  has  no  step  (point)  of  money.' 
That  the  linguistic  instinct  is  no  longer  sensible  of  any  de- 
pendence upon/«j  or  point  is  evident  from  this,  among  other  facts, 
that  de  is  transferred  by  analogy  to  other  negative  sentences  which 
contain  no  word  originally  substantive  (cf.  il  n'y  a  jamais  de  lois 
observees),  and  also  to  sentences  negative  only  in  meaning,  not  in 
form  (cf.  sans  laisser  d'esp^rance ;  doit-il  avoir  d' autre  volonte). 
Similarly  in  MHG.,  cf.  des  enmac  niht  gesin ;  mtn  vrouwe  Mzet  iuwer 
nikt :  and  so  again  a/sd  grozer  krefte  nie  mer  reeke  gewan.  Cf. 
further  NHG.  hier  ist  meines  bleibens  nicht. 

496.  The  German  Adverbs,  which  are  at  the  same  time  pre- 
positions, enter  into  a  closer  union  with  the  verb,  in  consequence 
of  which  the  case,  which  is  strictly  dependent  upon  them  alone, 
appears  to  depend  on  the  combination  of  verb  and  adverb;  cf. 
einem  abgewinnen,  anliegen,  aufdrdngen,  iiberwerfen,  unterlegen, 
vorstellen,  zusprechen  ;  einen  anreden,  anklagen.  That  the  case  was 
at  first  really  dependent  on  the  adverb  is  shown  by  the  fact  that 
in  the  early  period  we  regularly  find  the  same  case  employed 
which  the  adverb  governed  when  used  as  a  preposition  ;  and  by 
the  special  fact,  more  particularly,  that  the  verbs  which  taken  by 
themselves  are  transitive  can  take  a  double  accusative  when 
combined  with  an  adverb ;  thus  in  MHG.  very  frequently  the  verbs 
combined  with  ane  {er  nam  ze  kinde  sick  den  weisen  an),  sometimes 
those  with  ■&/,  in  OS.,  also  those  with  ttmbi,  cf.  stod  ine  uuerod  umbi. 
In  English  we  can  clearly  trace  the  process  by  which  a  case  de- 
pending on  a  preposition  is  detached  from  direct  connexion  with  it, 


and  attracted  to  the  verb.  In  the  great  majority  of  cases,  this 
detachment  is  caused  by  the  effort  to  put  the  psychological  subject 
at  the  head  of  the  sentence.  Cf.  And  this  rich  fair  town  we  make 
him  lord  o/(SHAKESPEARE);*ze/«j/%^j  of  all  kind  I  had  an  antipathy" }"'"'  "■  "^ 
to  (Goldsmith)  ;t  further  examples  in  Matzn.  ii.  518.  The  twofKi-are. 
principal  cases  of  this  phenomenon  are  the  relative  sentences  (cf  a 
place  which  we  have  long  heard  and  read  of,  cf  ib.  5 19),  and  passive 
sentences  (J;he  tailor  was  seldom  talked  of,  cf  ib.  65  ff.),  where  the 
passive  construction  serves,  as  elsewhere,  to  make  the  psychological 
also  the  grammatical  subject.  This  kind  of  passive  construction 
is  used  even  with  transitive  words  with  an  object  attached  to  them 
{they  were  never  taken  notice  of,  Sheridan,  cf  ib.  67).  This  de- 
tachment is  further  usual  in  interrogative  sentences,  where  the 
precedence  of  the  predicate  accordingly  comes  into  question  {what 
humour  is  the  prince  of,  cf  ib.  519). 

497.  An  element  grammatically  depending  on  an  infinitive  may  infinitive 

and  an 

pass  into  psychological  dependence  on  the  combination  of  this  element 


infinitive  with  its  governing  word  ;  cf  dies  buch  werde  ich  dich  nie  on  it. 
lesen  lassen ;  das  ding  selbst  bin  ich  weit  entfernt  zu  sehen 
(Lessing)  ;  mit  welchen  sie  sich  erinnern,  gegen  mich  glUcklich 
gewesen  zu  sein  (LesSING).  In  consequence  of  this  the  linguistic 
instinct  may  become  uncertain  whether  the  element  in  question 
ought  to  be  directly  connected  with  the  infinitive  or  with  its 
government.  Hence  these  cases  come  to  bear  a  close  resemblance 
to  others  in  which  the  dependence  on  the  finite  verb  is  really  the 
more  primitive — cf  was  ich  zu  besorgen  habe.  Thus  it  happens 
that  a  genuine  transference  of  the  government  from  the  infinitive 
to  the  finite  verb  takes  place,  which  is  attested  unmistakably  by 
the  use  of  the  passive ;  cf  hier  ist  sie  (Minna  v.  Barnhelm)  auf 
ansuchen  des  herrn  von  Hecht  zu  spielen  verboten  (Lessing)  ;  die 
anklage    ist  fallen   gelassen    worden   (Allgemeine    Zeitung) ;    die 


stellung  des  fursten  Hohenlohe  wird  zu  untergraben  versucht  (ib.). 
With  these  compare  the  Greek  examples :  '^iKicov  Spax/J-oiv 
6/x6Xoyri6eK7a)v  a-n-dXa^elv  ('it  having  been  agreed  that  I  should 
receive  looo  drachmas,'  Dem.)  ;  ra  r/fitv  ef  "■PXU''  """apayyeXdivTa 
Ste^eXOelv  (PlATO)  ;  tmv  Trpoecprjfievcov  '^fiepwv  to,  iiriTrjheia  e^^eiv 
('of  the  days  for  which  it  had  been  ordered  to  have  provisions,' 
Xenophon).  To  the  same  displacement  is  also  due  the  passive 
use  of  Latin  coepi,  desino,jubeo,  prohibeo  {liber  legi  coeptus  est,jubeor 
interfici),  only  that  here  the  infinitive  also  is  thrown  into  the  pas- 
sive, involving  a  double  reference  to  the  element  which  is  made 
the  subject.  A  similar  passive  use  occurs  in  archaic  Latin  with 
possum  and  queo  also,  e.g.  quod  tamen  expleri  nulla  ratione  potestur 
(Lucretius)  ;  *  cf  Draeger,  §  93.  [So  caletur  (Plaut.  Capt.  i.  i. 
12.)]  Here  belongs,  further,  the  conversion  in  thought  of  an  object 
depending  on  an  infinitive  into  the  subject  of  a  governing,  but 
absolutely  impersonal,  verb,  as  in  rfv  yap  ti  iv  avTo2<;  irpoariKov 
Ihelv  ('what  it  was  becoming  to  see,'  Plato)  ;  Xoyov  tivcl 
vpoarjKOVTa  pr)6rjvai  (ib.).^ 

498.  We  have  seen  that  the  most  heterogeneous  elements  of  a 
sentence  are  capable  of  being  psychologically  conceived  as  mere 
copulas,  when  two  others  in  their  neighbourhood  are  emphasised 
as  its  real  essence.  Certain  words  being  regularly  used  thus,  the 
psychological  category  becomes  a  grammatical  one,  and  the  words 
in  question  become  connecting-words.  By  a  connecting-word  I 
mean  one  which  serves  to  indicate  the  relation  subsisting  between 
two  notions  ;  which  can,  accordingly,  only  be  used  in  association 
with  two  notions,  and  is  incapable  of  any  independent  meaning 
when  used  either  alone  or  with  a  single  notion  only.  The  copula 
is  is  a  connecting-word  between  subject  and  predicate.  It  has 
latterly  been  denied  that  we  are  justified  in  setting  up  such  a  class, 

■^  The  above  exposition  is  almost  entirely  based  upon  Madvig,  A7.  schr.  p.  362. 


and  contended  that  the  copula,  like  any  other  finite  verb,  is  to  be 
treated  as  predicate,  and  the  predicative  substantive  or  adjective 
as  the  determinant  of  the  predicate.  This  view  seems  to  me  an 
example  of  that  misunderstanding  of  what  is  involved  in  the 
demand  for  a  separa^on  between  grammar  and  logic  which  I 
have  touched  on  at  p.  16  above — an  example  of  one-sided  regard 
for  the  outer  grammatical  form  and  neglect  of  its  functional 
value.  We  must  not,  however,  ignore  that  sentences  like  trdunie 
sind  schdunie,  gliicklich  ist  der  mann,  are  equivalent  in  value  to  sen- 
tences without  copula,  such  as  trdume  schdume,  gliicklich  der  mann, 
and  that  sentences  of  the  simpler  form  were  obviously  abundant  in 
the  earliest  period,  and  were  only  by  degrees  thrust  into  the  back- 
ground by  sentences  with  copula.  Were  we  to  concede  to  the  is 
an  independent  value  beside  the  substantival  or  adjectival  pre- 
dicate, all  sentences  of  this  class  would  become  assertions  of 
existence,  which,  on  the  testimony  of  the  linguistic  sense,  they  are 
obviously  not.  What  nonsense  would  result  from  the  interpreta- 
tion of  the  sentence  that  is  impossible,  as  '  that  exists  as  something 
impossible ' ! 

499.  The  reluctance  to  recognise  the  copula  as  a  connecting- 
word  arises  from  its  preserving,  by  means  of  its  inflexion,  the 
character  of  a  verb.  In  the  case  of  crystallised  forms  which  are 
devoid  of  flexional  change,  there  is  less  difficulty  in  perceiving  the 
transition  from  an  independent  to  a  connecting-word.  This  trans- 
ition is  always  effected  by  means  of  a  displacement  of  the  distri- 
bution, as  will  be  shown  by  a  series  of  examples  below. 

500.  A  special  variety  of  this  displacement  consists  in  giving  to  indired 


two  elements,  which  properly  have  only  an  indirect  relation  to  each  becomes 


other  due  to  their  common  dependence  upon  a  third,  a  direct  rela- 
tion. It  is  thus  that  we  ought,  probably,  to  conceive  the  origin  of 
the  predicative  accusative.      We   can   now  say  equally  well   ich 


inache  ihn  zum  narren  and  ich  mache  einen  narren  aus  ihm.     A 
double  mode  of  accusative  is  therefore  possible  with  machen,  one 
indicating  the  object  affected  by  the  action,  the  other  the  result  of 
this  action.     If  we  attach  both  directly  to  the  verb,  as  is  still  pos- 
sible, in  certain  phrases,  in  MHG.,  e.g.  ich  inache  in  ritter,  the  idea 
'  he  becomes  a  knight,'  or  its  equivalent,  must  enter  the  conscious- 
ness at  the  same  time,  and  thus  both  accusatives  are  set  in  mutual 
relation  on  the  analogy  of  subject  and  predicate.     This  explana- 
tion is  applicable  to  all  the  cases  in  various  languages,  in  which  a 
substantive  is  used  as  predicative  accusative.     The  transferred  use 
of  the  adjective  as  a  predicative  object  might  then  be  conceived  as 
modelled  by  analogy  on  the  similar  use  of  the  sub.stantive.     But  it 
must  further  be  considered   that,  in  addition  to  ich  mache  einen 
menschen  gliicklich,  we  can  say  ich  mache  einen  glUcklichen  men- 
schen.     The  same  explanation  serves  for  the  accusative  and  infini- 
tive.    The  infinitive  is  originally  a  second  object  to  the  governing 
verb.     This  is  still  the  case  with   our  ich  heisse  ihn  aufstehen,  ich 
lasse   ihn  arbeiten,  etc.     The    infinitive   may  even    stand  without 
another  accusative  as  object  (ich  lasse  arbeiten).      Er  lehrt  mich 
franzosich  sprechen  is  not  essentially  different  in  construction  from 
er  lehrt  mich  die  franzdsische  sprache.      So  we  can  say  in  Latin 
quod  te  jubet  as  well  as  jubet  te  facere.      In   the  same  way  the 
nominative  and  infinitive  has  an  analogy  in  the  passive  construc- 
tion of  verbs  which  can  take  a  double  accusative.     Bibidus  nondum 
audiebatur  esse  in  Syria  is  identical  in  construction  with  Cicero  per 
legatos  cuncta  edoctus  ;  quodjussi  sunt.     The  treatment  of  the  sub- 
stantival accusative  as  a  subject  of  the  infinitive  is  then  a  natural 
result  of  the  actual  situation. 

SOI.  Another  not  infrequent  mode  of  displacement  occurs 
when  an  element,  which  properly  belongs  to  two  co-ordinate  or 
adversative  elements,  is  conceived  as  belonging  solely  to  the  first. 


and  placed  in  relation  to  a  particle  which  connects  the  two.     The  An  Eiemen 

^  equally 

German  entweder — oder  is  now  thought  of  as  a  pair  of  correlative  related  to 

two  other 

particles.     But  entweder  arose  from  eindeweder,  and  means,  pro- Elements  is 

attracted  to 

perly,  'one  of  the  two' ;  hence  entweder  das  auge  oder  das  kerz  is  ■Ca.^Fmt. 
literally  'one  of  the  two,  the  eye  or  the  heart'  The  displacement 
has  allowed  the  form, to  crystallise,  so  that  entweder  can  be  used  in 
every  case,  and  with  every  part  of  speech  at  will.  Where  entweder 
— oder  serves  to  combine  sentences,  the  attraction  of  the  former 
into  the  first  sentence  is  shown  also  by  the  inversion  (entiveder  ist 
er  tot  beside  er  ist  tot).  It  is  just  the,  same  with  weder — noch,  with 
MHG.  weder — oder  =l^dLtin  utrum — an,  WKG.  beide — ««d?=  English 
both — and,  etc.  We  translate  Latin  aeque  ac  by  '  even  as,'  'just  as.' 
But  a  phrase  like  hie  mihi  aeqiie  placet  atque  ille  is  properly  '  this 
man  and  that  please  me  alike.'  That  a  real  displacement  of  dis- 
tribution has  nevertheless  taken  place,  and  that  the  ac  of  com- 
parison is,  to  a  certain  extent,  detached  from  the  copulative  ac,  is 
shown  by  the  regular  use  of  a  singular  predicate  where  the  ac  is 
attached  to  a  singular  subject ;  also  by  the  order ;  and  finally, 
by  cases  in  which  it  is  no  longer  possible  to  render  ac  by  '  and,' 
— e.g.  aeque  a  te  peto  ac  si  mea  negotia  essent.  Instructive, 
too,  are  analogous  constructions  which  have  failed  to  become 
perfectly  normal — where  the  displacement  has  eitljer  not  appeared 
at  all  or  not  yet  become  'usual.'  Aeque  et  sometimes  stands  for 
aeque  ac :  aeque  promptum  est  mihi  et  adversaria  meo  (Q,\CE.^oy*'proMar. 
cf.  Draeger,  §  311,  18.  We  find  further  ac  or  et  after  par,  similis, 
idem,  alius,  etc.  (cf  ih.) :  pariter  patribus  ac  plebi  carus  ;  pariter  n. 
corpore  et  animo  (TERENCE)  ;tw««^  consul  ex  multis  de  hostium  ,^^^^.^_ 
adventu   cognovit  et  ipsi  hostes    aderant    (Sallust)  ;    solet   alia  1-3. 

§  Ann.  xiiL 

sentire  et  loqui  (Caelius)  ;J  viae  pariter  et  pugnae   (Tacitus);§  '4- 
omnia  fuisse  in   Themistocle  paria  et   Coriolano  {ClCEKO)  •,\\  haec^^  mt.xi. 
eodein  tempore   Caesari  mandata  referebantur  et  in  Licori  vadum 



reperiebatur  (Caesar).     This  displacement  has  also  affected  the 
ON.  ok. 

Compound  502.  The  Same  displacements  which  occur  within  the  simple 

sentence  are  naturally  also  found  in  the  compound,  since  the 
two  kinds  of  sentence  are  separated  by  no  essential  and  pervading 
distinction.  The  subordinate  sentence  has  the  same  function  as 
an  element  of  the  sentence,  and  is  therefore  subject  to  the  same 
laws  as  any  other  element  in  respect  of  the  distribution  of  the 
entire  period.  It  is  therefore  wrong  to  divide,  as  is  usually  done, 
every  period  at  once  into  a  principal  and  a  subordinate  sentence 
(or  sentences).  In  the  first  place,  it  is  to  be  considered  that  the 
subordinate  sentence  can  represent  an  indispensable  element  such 
as  the  subject  (e.g.  that  he  does  not  come,  annoys  me)  ;  and,  further, 
that  what  we  commonly  call  the  principal  sentence  is  in  truth 
no  sentence  at  all,  but  only  an  element  or  a  complex  of  elements. 
If  the  subordinate  sentence  contains  an  unessential  portion  of  the 
period — e.g.  a  time-determinant — it  is  doubtless  possible  to  dis- 
tinguish the  principal  sentence  from  it  as  an  independent  whole ; 
but  this  distribution  is  grammatically  wrong,  and  even  psycho- 
logically not  always  right.  To  divide  the  period  I  asked  him  after 
his  health  when  I  met  him  at  once  into  principal  and  subordinate 
sentence,  is  no  more  justified  than  it  would  be  to  divide  the 
sentence  /  asked  him  yesterday  after  his  health  into  /  asked  him 
after  his  health  -f  yesterday.  We  can  of  course  just  as  easily 
put  the  subordinate  sentence  as  the  adverb  between  the  other 
members.  Finally,  the  subordinate  sentence  does  not  always 
contain  an  independent  element,  but  frequently  only  a  portion, 
a  determinant,  of  one :  this  is  the  case  with  all  relative-sentences 
which  refer  to  a  word  in  the  principal  sentence.  Now  the  sub- 
ordinate sentence  may,  just  like  any  other  element,  demand,  from 
a  psychological  point  of  view,  a  distribution  not  in   accordance 


with  pure  grammar ;  and  it  may,  just  like  any  other  element, 
share  in  the  displacement  of  the  distribution.  Hence  such  a 
displacement  is  often  the  condition  which  renders  possible  the 
division  into  principal  and  subordinate  sentence.  The  subordi- 
nate sentence  is  here  always  psychological  subject,  the  principal 
sentence  predicate — of  course  in  the  wide  sense  laid  down  in 
Chapter  VI. 

503.  If  we  apply  the  distinction  drawn  on  p.  117  between 
abstract,  concrete,  and  concrete-abstract  sentences  to  the  com- 
pound sentence,  we  find  that  the  hypothetical  sentences  (in  the 
widest  sense)  comprise  the  abstract  and  abstract-concrete.  To 
the  abstract  group  belong,  e.g.,  if  it  rains,  it  is  wet ;  who  touches 
pitch  will  be  defiled;  to  the  abstract-concrete,  if  you  do  not  yet  know 
it,  I  will  tell  you  ;  as  often  as  he  meets  me,  he  asks  me  ;  whoever 
among  you  is  not  content,  let  him  say  so.  The  meaning  of  every 
abstract  or  abstract-concrete  sentence  may  therefore  be  expressed 
by  a  hypothetical  period. 

504.  Just  as  the  grammatically  independent  sentence  admits  Transition 


of  a  gradual   transition  to  dependence,   so   one  which  is  gram-  Dependence 

to  Inde- 

matically  denoted  as  dependent  may  approximate  by  successive  pendence. 
steps  to  independence.  In  the  intermediate  stage  described 
above,  p.  145,  between  logical  dependence  and  independence,  the 
grammatical  form  may  belong  to  either  class.  A  preference  for 
one  or  for  the  other  serves  to  distinguish  different  languages 
and  styles.  Thus  it  is  a  familiar  characteristic  of  Latin  in  the 
historical  period  to  communicate  facts  which  are  in  themselves 
new  and  have  an  independent  value,  but  which  at  the  same 
time  serve  as  temporal  or  causal  determinants  of  some  other  fact,  in 
the  form  of  a  dependent  sentence  or  a  participial  phrase,  while 
in  German  the  independent  sentence  is  preferred.  In  various 
languages  it  is  not  uncommon  to  attach  by  a  relative  a  sentence 


which  in  no  way  defines  or  modifies  what  precedes,  but  gives 
new  information,  and  therefore  has  the  force  of  a  co-ordinate 
sentence  ;  cf  he  went  to  Paris,  whence  later  on  he  travelled  to  Lyons 
( =  and  thence)  ;  /  met  your  father  yesterday,  with  whom  I  had 
a  long  talk  (in  contrast  with  /  met  to-day  the  gentleman  with  whom 
I  talked  yesterday).  This  is  of  course  especially  frequent  in  Latin, 
and  we  are  there  accustomed  to  treat  long  sentences  introduced 
by  relatives  as  independent  sentences.  A  similar  loosely-attached 
relative  appears  also  in  conjunctive  sentences,  such  as  quod  Tiberius 
quum  fieri  animadvertit,  simi  pugionem  eduxit  (Bel,!,.  Hisp.)  ;  quae 
si  dubia  aiit  procul  essent,  tamen  omnes  bonos  reipublicae  subvenire 
decebat  (Sall.).^  A  test  of  the  complete  independence  of  the 
relative  sentence  is  the  use  of  the  imperative  in  it.  This  I  find 
occurring  in  the  Greek  New  Testament,  2  Tim.  iv.  15  :  ov  koI  <rv 
<j)vXdcrs-ov,  and  Heb.  xiii.  7  ■  wv  avaBecopovvrei  rrjv  eK^aaiv  Trji 
avaarpo^rj's  fj^ifiuaOe  rrjv  TridTiv  ;  in  both  passages  likewise  in 
Luther's  translation  :  vor  welchem  hilte  du  dich  auch  and  welcher 
ende  schauet  an  und  folget  ihrem  glauben  nach.  The  use  of  quam- 
quam  and  etsi  =  'however'  corresponds.  Especially  obvious 
is  the  dissolution  of  the  dependence  in  a  case  like  do poenas  temcri- 
•Att.  IX.  X.  tatis  meae  ;  etsi  quae  fiiit  ilia  temeritas  f  (CiC.).*  The  same  usage 
is  found  with  the  German  wiewol,  obgleich,  where  the  dissolution 
of  the  dependence  is  attested  by  the  order  of  subject  and 
predicate  ;  cf.  Wie  darfst  du  dich  doch  meinen  augen  weisen  ? 
wiewol  du  kommst  mir  recht  (Hagedorn)  ;  obgleich  das  weissbrod 
schmeckt  auch  in  dem  schloss  nicht  iibel  (Hebel). 
Inversion  of  S^S-  Cases  Hkcwise  occur  in  which  the  logical  dependence  is 
of  prfncip°a'i    preclscly  the  converse  of  the  grammatical.     The  most  familiar  class 

and  sub-  .  ^ 

ordinate  i  In  itself,  no  doubt,  the  use  of  the  relative  in  a  conjunctive  sentence  does  not  imply  J 

sentence.  any  loosening  of  the -dependence.  Cf.  Luther,  Apost.  xv.  2g,dass  ihr  euchenthalletvom 
gSHenopfer,  etc.,  von  welchen  so  ihr  euch  enthaltet,  tut  ihr  recht  (^|  iiv  SLarripoOiiTa 
eavTods  eS  7r/)d|ere).     Here  the  relative  is  used,  as  elsewhere,  as  a  portion  of  an  element.  , 



of  instances,  and  one  common  to  many  languages,  is  formed  by  time- 
determinants,  mostly  eben,  gerade,  nock,  kaum,  =just,  scarcely,  etc., — 
upon  which  the  logical  principal-sentence  may  follow  not  only,  as 
we  saw  (p.  145)  in  the  form  of  the  principal-sentence,  but  also  in 
that  of  the  depepdent-sentence  ;  cf.  kaum  war  icji  angekommen,  ah 
ich  befehl  erhielt ;  Fr.  je  n'eus  pas  mis  pied  a  terre,  que  I'hdte  vint  me 
saluer.  Other  examples  are  :  Fr.  le  dernier  des  Bourbons  serait  tu^, 
que  la  France  n'en  aurait  pas  mains  un  roi  (MiGNET)  =  '  though 
the  last  of  the  Bourbons  were  killed,  France  would  none  the  less 
have  a  king;''  WHG.jane  git  er  nie  so  balde,  erne  benahte  in  dem 
walde,  = '  though  he  walk  never  so  fast,  night  will  overtake  him  in 
the  wood.' 

506.  The  psychological  distribution  may  also  break  down  the 
division  between  principal  and  subordinate  sentence.  A  frequent  case 
of  this  is  where  a  particle  properly  belonging  to  the  principal 
sentence  coalesces  with  one  in  relation  to  it  which  introduces  the 
subordinate  sentence,  the  whole  group  being  then  regarded  by  the 
linguistic  instinct  as  introducing  the  subordinate  sentence.  Cf. 
sowie  (Goth,  swaswe,  OHG.  sdso),  so  dass,  sobald  als,  auck  wenn  ; 
Lat.  sicut,  simulac,  postquam,  antequam,  priusqicam,  etsi,  etiamsi, 
tain(en)-etsi.  It  is  more  important  that  certain  words,  especially 
pronouns  or  particles,  which  originally  belong  to  the  principal 
sentence,  become  connecting  elements  between  the  latter  and  a 
psychologically  subordinate  sentence  which  was  previously  intro- 
duced by  no  particle,  or  was  even  wholly  devoid  of  any  gram- 
matical work  of  dependence.  These  words  are  then  commonly 
treated  as  a  part  of  the  subordinate  sentence.  In  this  way  a 
quantity  of  conjunctions  have  arisen  which  serve  to  introduce  sub- 
ordinate sentences,  and  this  simple  process  of  displacement  of 
distribution  has  been  one  of  the  most  effective  means  of  creating  a 
grammatical  denotation  for  the  dependence  of  sentences.     For  the 


most  part  these  words  referred  originally  to  the  logically  dependent 
sentence  which   followed  (cf.   p.   141).      Here   belongs  the  most 
important  German  particle  daz,  English  that,  originally  nominative 
and  accusative   of  the  demonstrative  pronoun.       /  see  that  he  is 
satisfied  comes  from  I  see  that ;  he  is  satisfied.     When  the  that  had 
been  drawn  into  the  subordinate  sentence  and  so  converted  into  a 
conjunction,  this  construction  could  be  extended,  like  the  accusative 
and  infinitive  (cf  p.  259),  to  cases  in  which  a  nominative  or  accusative 
of  the  pronoun  could  not  be  used  ;  e.g.  I  am  convinced  (of  this^,  that 
you  are  guilty  ;  he  was  (so)  amazed,  that  he  could  not  answer  a  word. 
In  many  cases  daz  has  passed  into  the  subordinate  sentence  even 
when  accompanied  by  a  preposition.     Cf.  MHG.  durch  daz  ervidelen 
kunde,  '  because  he  knew  how  to  fiddle,'  literally  '  for  this  reason : 
he  knew  how  to  fiddle.'    Similarly  umlie  daz,  dne  daz,  fUr  daz,  Afdaz 
(rare),  bedaz  ('  the  while ').     NHG.  has  preserved  ohne  dass  and  aiif 
dass  ;  ausser  dass,  w'dhrend  dass  and  anstatt  dass  are  probably  to  be 
conceived  as  analogically  modelled  on  them,  since  these  preposi- 
tions do  not  govern  the  accusative.      On  the  other  hand,  some 
prepositions  with  the  dative  of  the  demonstrative  pronoun  have 
only  in  the  NHG.  period  passed,  through  displacements,  into  con- 
junctions: nachdem,  seitdem,  indem,  wdhrenddem.     Here  and  there  I 
we  find  darum  ;  darum  ich  es  auch  nicht  Idnger  vertragen,  habe  ich 
ausgesandt  (LUTHER,  I  Thess.  iii.   5).      The  same  is  the  case  in 
English  with/^r  that,  AS.  for  Tpdm,  aer  \am.     Also,  so  in  OHG.  and 
early  MHG.  =J^  dass;  and  so  in  assurances  and  protestations:  so 
wahr  mirgott  helfe,  so  wahr  ich  hier  stehe,  for  which  may  be  equally 
well  said  so  wahr  wie  ich  hier  stehe.       6"^=' however  much';  so 
gutmiitig  er  (auch)  ist,  das  wird  er  nicht  tun  ;  cf.  MHG.  sd  vil  ze 
Salcerne  von  arzenien  meister  ist,  but  also  with  a  second  relative 
sd:  sd  manec  wert  leben  sd  Hebe  frumt ;  cf  English  Nature,  as  green  \ 
us  she  looks,  rests  everywhere  on  dread  foundations  (Carlyle),  a 


construction  frequent  in  the  older  language,  while  the  modern 
mostly  uses  only  the  second  relative  as ;  cf.  also  OF.  si — com, 
NFR.  si — que.  In  the  last  cases,  besides  the  so,  a  further  element 
not  properly  belonging  to  it  is  always  thrust  into  the  subordinate 
sentence.  It  is  thus  with  NHG.  sobald  (als,  wie),  so  lange  {als,  wie), 
{in)  sofern,  {in)  soweit,  sowie.  This  so  is  often  conceived  wrongly 
as  an  original  relative.  Substantives  too,  in  part  with,  in  part 
without,  an  article,  in  part  depending  on  a  preposition,  have 
frequently  entered  into  a  subordinate  sentence  which  served  to 
explain  them  (cf.  p.  141).  E.g.  MHG.  die  wtle  ich  weis  drt  hove, 
NHG.  dieweil,  alldieweil,derweil,  wgz7=  English  {the  while) ;  NHG. 
falls,  im  falle,  sintemal=sint  dem  mdle;  seit  der  zeit  er  aufer- 
standen  ist  (LUTHER) ;  English  on  {upon)  condition,  in  case  (both 
also  with  followiiig  that),  because. 

507.  A  similar  process  is,  in  German  at  least,  a  partial  ground 
of  the  transition  from  the  demonstrative  to  the  relative.  This 
transition  is  a  consequence  of  the. variety  of  airo  icoivov  construc- 
tion described  above,  p.  133.  The  common  member  may  consist 
of  the  demonstrative  pronoun  der,  or  a  demonstrative  adverb,  cf. 
liefun  thie  nan  minnotun  (Otfrid)  ;  thdr  ther  sin  friunt  uuas  iu  er 
lagfiardon  dag  bigrabanir  {'  where  he,  who  had  formerly  been  his 
friend,  lay  the  fourth  day  buried,'  ib.) ;  ni  mag  diufal  ingegin  sin 
thdr  ir  ginennet  namon  min  {'  the  devil  cannot  resist  there,  where 
you  utter  my  name,'  ib.) ;  thu  giangi  thara  thu  uuoltos  {'  you  go 
thither,  whither  you  will,'  ib.)  ;  der  mich  liebt  und  kennt  ist  in  der 
weite  (Goethe).  We  should  here,  if  we  followed  our  linguistic 
sense,  interpret  the  pronoun  or  adverb  as  a  relative,  and  as  belong- 
ing to  the  subordinate  sentence,  and  this  interpretation  has 
actually  effected  the  substitution  for  the  old  demonstrative  of  the 
other  relative,  coincident  with  the  interrogative,  which  in  universal 
sentences  is  now  alone  used  ;  wer  wagt,  gewinnt ;   wo  nichts  ist. 


da  hat  der  kaiser  sein  recht  verloren.  But  that  the  pronoun  (and 
hence  also  the  adverb)  originally  belonged  alike  to  principal  and 
subordinate  sentence,  appears  from  the  following  reasons  :  Firstly, 
the  pronoun  can  be  combined  with  a  substantive  which  must 
necessarily  belong  to  the  principal  sentence  also  ;  in  droume  sie  in 
zelitun  then  uueg  sie  faran  scoltun  {'  in  dream  they  told  him  the 
way  which  they  were  to  travel,'  Otfrid)  ;  der  mdhte  mich  ergetzen 
niht  des  mares  mir  iuzver  munt  vergiht  {'  he  could  give  me  no  com- 
fort for  the  tidings  which  your  mouth  announces  to  me,'  WOLFRAM); 
er  sdr  in  thd  gisageta  thia  salida  in  tho  gaganta  (Otfrid)  ;  diw 
sick  geltchen  kunde  der  grSzen  sul  da  zwischen  stuont  (WOLFRAM). 
Secondly,  the  case  of  the  pronoun  is  in  OHG.  and  MHG.,  and  even 
in  early  NHG.  determined  usually  by  the  principal  sentence  when- 
ever this  requires  a  genitive  or  dative,  and  the  subordinate  a 
nominative  or  accusative ;  uui  demo  in  vinstrl  seal  stno  virind 
stuen  ('  woe  to  him  who  in  darkness  shall  do  penance  for  his  sins,' 
Muspilli)  ;  owwi  des  dd  ndch  geschiht  (WOLFRAM)  ;  mit  all  dem 
ich  kan  vnd  vermag  (Hans  SacHS).  Thirdly,  the  pronoun  can  be 
dependent  on  a  preposition,  and  this  must  likewise  be  drawn  into 
the  principal  and  subordinate  sentences  :  waz  ich  bceser  handelunge 
erliten  hdn  von  den  ichs  wol  erlazeji  mdhte  sin  {'  from  those  by 
whom  I  might  well  have  been  spared  it,'  MINNESINGER).  Fourthly, 
a  class  distinct  from  these,  but  equally  tending  to  prove  that  the 
pronoun  belonged  originally  to  the  principal  sentence  also,  is  that 
in  which  it  is  dependent  on  a  preposition  which  belongs  solely  tO' 
the  principal  sentence.  Cf.  waz  sol  trAren  fiir  daz  nieman  kan 
erwenden  (MINNESINGER)  ;  daz  ich  singe  owi  von  der  ich  iemer 
dienen  sol  (Heinr.  v.  Morungen)  ;  or  the  case  may  even  be 
determined  solely  by  the  principal  sentence ;  der  suerit  bi  demo  '; 
temple,  suerit  in  demo  ddr  inne  artSt  ('swears  by  him  who 
dwells  therein,'  Fragmenta  theotisca) ;  den  vater  erit  dd  zi  himili 


der  sun  mid  den  er  h&t  hi  in  erdi  giwunnun  {Summa  Theologiae). 
If  the  subordinate  sentence  precedes,  the  common  element  may  be 
resumed  by  a  pronoun  or  adverb,  cf.  ther  man  thaz  giagaleizit  thaz 
sih  kuning  keizit,  der  uuidarot  in  alauuAr  themo  keisore  sar  ('  the 
man  who  undertakes  to  call  himself  king,  he  assuredly  opposes  the 
emperor,'  Otfrid)  ;  daz  erbe  ■Ach  ■d.were  vorderen  an  br&chten  unt 
mit  herscilte  ervdckten,  welt  ir  dd  von  entrinnen  (Rolandslied);**i.32S- 
den  schaden  he  uns  to  donde  plecht,  dar  vor  kricht  he  nun  sin  recht 
(Reineke  vos). 

508.  For  such  cases  as  those  adduced  it  is  clear  from  the  above 
reasons  that  the  element  which  introduces  the  sentence  must  really 
be  conceived  as  originally  common  to  both  divisions  of  it,  and  that 
its  repetition  stands  originally  in  the  same  place  with  such  cases  as 
den  schatz  den  hiez  er  fUeren  ;  beide  schouwen  unde  grilezen  swaz  ich 
mich  daran  versAmet  h'dn  (Walther).  We  are  therefore  also 
entitled  to  assume  the  same  origin  for  sentences  like  ther  brAt 
habet,  ther  seal  ther  brAtigomo  sin  (Otfrid).  This  is  not,  however, 
intended  to  exclude  the  supposition  that  relative  sentences  have 
also  arisen  from  a  primitive  doubling  of  the  demonstrative. 

509.  Principal  and  subordinate  sentence  may  also  be  so  intri-  impossibiutj 

of  drawing  a 

cately  blended  that  it  is  no  longer  possible  to  separate  the  ele- hard  and 

fast  line 

ments  of  the  one  from  those  of  the  other,  as  is  shown  also  by  the  between 

principal  and 

order  of  the  words.     In  many  languages  the  principal  sentence  is  subordinate 


logically  so  subordinate  that  it  can  be  treated  as  a  connecting 
element,  and  inserted  in  the  dependent  sentence.  The  part  of  the 
latter  which  precedes  is  then  the  psychological  subject  or  predi- 
cate. This  is  especially  common  in  interrogative  and  relative 
sentences.  Cf.  Italian,  mio  padre  e  mio  fratello  dimmi  ove  sono 
Latin  tu  nos  fac  antes  (CiCERO)  ;  verbum  cave  faxis  (Plautus) 
matrem  jubeo  requiras  (Ovid)  ;  ducas  volo  hodieuxorem  (TERENCE) 
quid  vis  curem  f  (Plautus)  ;  quid  tibi  vis  dicam  f  (ib.) ;  English, 



something    that    I   believe  will    make   you   smile   (GOLDSMITH) ; 
whereof  I  gave  thee  charge  thou  shouldst  not  eat  (MiLTON)  ;  whose 
fellowship  therefore  unmeet  for  thee  good  reason  was  thou  freely 
shouldst  dislike  (MiLTON) ;  MHG.  zuo  Amelolt  und  Neren  nu  hceret 
wie  er  sprach  (Alphart)  ;  die  enweiz  ich  war  ich  tuo  ;  MHG.  eine 
sammlung,  an  deren  existenz  ich  nicht  sehe  warum  Nik.  Antonio 
zweifebi  wollen  (LesSING).     English,  but  with  me  I  see  not  who 
partakes ;  which  we  would  know  whence  learned  (MiLTON).     NHG. 
auf  diese  veralteten  worter  haben   wir  geglaubt,  dass  wir  unser 
augenmerk  vornehmlich  richten  miissten ;  MHG.  tiefe  mantel  wit  sach 
man  daz  si  truogen ;  zuo  stnem  brtltloufte  bat  er  daz  si  qiicemen ; 
Italian,  questi  mercati  giudico  io  che  fossero  la  cagione  (Mach.)  ; 
Spanish,  los  forzados  del  rey  quiere  que  le  dexemos  (CERVANTES) ; 
Provengal,  cosselh  m'es  ops  qu'ieu  en  prenda  ('  it  is  necessary  that  I 
take  a  resolve  in  regard  to  it ') ;  Latin,  hanc  domum  jam  multos 
annos  est  quom  possideo  (Plautus)  ;  MHG.  swie  sie  wil,  so  wil  ich 
daz  mtn  fr'dude  ste;  Italian,  solo  Tancredi  avvien  che  lei  connosca 
(Tasso)  ;  er  hat  alles,  was  man  will  das  ein  mann  haben  soil ;  MHG. 
daz  ich  ie  wdnde  daz  iht  wcere  ;  French,  voila  des  raisons  qu'il  a  cru 
que  f  approuverais  ;  Italian,  le  opere  che  pajono  che  abbino  in  se  qualche 
virtii  (Mach.)  ;  NHG.  was  wollen  sie  denn  dass  aus  mir  werde  (LesS- 
ING)  ;  wie  wollt  ihr,  dass  das  geschehe  ?  woher  befehlt  ihr  denn  dass 
er  das  geld  nehnen  soil?  womit  wollt  ihr  dass  ich  mich  beschaftige? 
die  mischung,  mit  welcher  ich  glaube,  dass  die  moral  in  heftigen  situa- 
tionen  gesprochen  sein  will  (Lessing).     Hence  in  many  cases  it  be- 
comes uncertain  whether  the  first  part  of  the  sentence  is  to  be  held 
as  still  dependent  on  the  verb  of  the  grammatical  dependent  sen- 
tence or  rather  on  that  of  the  grammatical  principal  sentence.    The 
difficulty  is  now  solved  in  German  by  a  repetition  of  it  with  varying 
construction,  by  which  the  overlapping  of  principal  and  dependent 
sentence  is  avoided  :  wovon  er  wusste,  dass  er  es  nie  erlangen  wiirde} 

^  Translated  passages — vide  p.  502. 



IN    inflexional    languages  there   exists   a  tendency  to  place  Concord 
started  from 
words   related   in   a  way  for  which   no   specific   means   of  cases  in 

_  which  one 

expression  exists,  as  far  as  possible,  in  formal  correspondence  with  word  came 

to  agree 

each  other.     Thus  is  explained  the  concord  in  gender,  number,  with  anoth-r 

,      ,  without 

case,  and  person,  which  subsists  between  a  substantive  and  its  regard  for 

...  .  ,       the  latter, 

predicate  or  attribute,  or  a  pronoun  or  adjective  representing  the 
latter.  We  may  couple  with  these,  as  kindred  phenomena,  the 
correspondence  in  tense  and  mood  within  the  same  period.  Such 
concord  is  by  no  means  to  be  in  all  cases  considered  as  arising 
naturally  and  inevitably  from  the  nature  of  the  logical  relation. 
For  instance,  there  is  no  logical  reason  assignable  why  the 
adjective  should  be  placed  in  the  same  gender,  number,  and  case 
as  the  substantive.  We  have  rather  to  think  of  the  matter  in  this 
way.  The  starting-point  for  the  origin  of  concord  was  afforded  by 
cases  in  which  the  formal  correspondence  of  a  word  with  another 
was  produced  not  by  any  regard  for  the  latter,  but  merely  by  the 
identity  of  their  relation.  When,  however,  the  concord  once  began 
to  be  felt  as  such,  it  extended  its  area  by  analogical  transference  to  andwasther 

extended  to 
other  cases. 

other  cases.     We  shall  most  easily  recognise  that  this  is  the  real  exteS to 

course  of  its  development  if  we  contemplate  in  the  first  place  those 
-cases  in  which  the  extension  of  concord  can  still  be  historically 


Case  in  5 1 1.  The  correspondence  in  gender  and  number  seems  to  be 

which  the 

secondary     illogically  Spread  beyond  the  area  which  rightly  belongs  to  it,  in 

growth  of  .... 

concord  is     cascs  whcre  attention  is  directed  by  the  subject  to  something  as 

historically  i        i  i  •  i     /-     • 

traceable,      yct  unknown,  which  only  receives  a  definite  content  by  means  of 
the  predicate.     The  pronoun  which  composes  the  subject  ought 
then  always  to  stand  in  the  neuter  singular  :  and  it  actually  does 
so  habitually  in  NHG. ;  as  in  cases  like  das  ist  der  mann  ;  das  sind 
die  richtigeii ;  and  similarly  the  French  say  ce  sont  mes  freres.     On 
the  other  hand,  it  appears  in  English  brought  into  concord  with 
354.'  '  ■      the  predicate;  thus,  these  are  thy  glorious  deeds  (MlLTON);*[but 
\cBt  sindon,  etc.,  in   AS.] ;  in  Italian,  e  questa  la  vostra  figlia  f  in 
Spanish,  esta  es  la  espada ;  in  ancient  Greek,  avri)  roc  BUrj  ia-Ti 
Cai.  x>.      0eS)v  (Homer);    in   Latin,  ea  deinum  firma  amicitia  ^j^(Sall.j;+ 
sexec.  yiii.  kaec  morum  vitia  sunt  {ClC.)  ;XAthenae  istae  sunto  (Plaut.)  ;§^«ag 
a!''"'  ""  ■  apud  alios  iracundia  dicitur,  ea  in  i^nperio  superbia  atque  crudelitas 
.Cat.  SI.     appellatur  (SaLLUST)  ;|| though  we  also  find   id  tranquillitas  erit 
•^  ^'■'"^- "•  (Seneca);1I  and  this  use  is  common  in  negative  and  conditional 
[eriiog."^^'  senteoces.     We  shall  probably  best  explain  this  phenomenon  by 
supposing  that  the  subject  has  here  conformed  to  the  predicate,  as 
the  predicate  elsewhere  conforms  to  the  subject. 

512.  We  often  find  words  which  commonly  occur  in  the 
singular  only,  placed  by  Latin  writers  in  the  plural  when  connected 
by  a  copula  with  words  that  have  no  singular,  and  which  have  in 

WMost.  the  plural  a  special  meaning ;  summis  opibus  atque  industriis 
•A  Cat.  15.  (PLAUT.);f ■t«^^2<g  vigiliis  neque  quietibus  {SALl,l!ST);llpaupertates^- 
\%ap.  Non.  divitiae  (VARRO);§§cf.  Draeger,  S  7,  4. 

:6z,  20. 

513.  In  a  sentence  like  rnan  nennt  {heisst)  ihn  Friedrich,  the 
name  strictly  speaking  ought  to  have  no  case  ;  the  simple  stem 
should  stand  ;  nay,  we  may  apprehend  Friedrich  and  other  proper 
names  which  contain  no  case-signs  as  the  stem,  or  absolute  case. 
Further,  so  far  as  there  is  a  reference  to  naming  in  an  address  we 



might  expect  the  vocative,  and  we  actually  find  this  in  Greek ; 
rl  fie  KoXelre  Kvpie?  (St.  Luke  vi.  46),  translated  in  the  Vulgate 
guzd  vocatis  me  domine  ?^  In  default  of  a  pure  stem,  the  nominative 
has  to  be  used,  which,  in  most  cases,  is  undistinguishable  in  form 
from  the  vocative.  In  Gothic  the  passage  cited  above  is  trans- 
lated hwa  mik  haitid  frauja  f  Correspondingly,  Luther  further 
translates  was  heisst  ihr  mich  aber  herr,  herr  f  And  the  nominative 
or  vocative  is  thus  used  in  other  places  in  MHG.  and  NHG. ;  cf. 
daz  man  in  hiez  der  Bdruc  (W0LFRAM),*2V^  Mess  ihn  mein  Montan  .ijs^ 
(Gellert)  ;  den  ich  herr  Stolle  nennen  horte  (INSEL  Felsenburg). 
The  most  common  usage  at  the  present  day  is  that  of  the  accu- 
sative ;  and  as  early  as  in  Gothic  we  find  yanzei  jah  apaustuluns 
namnida.  This  accusative  is  owing  to  the  customary  concord 
occurring  in  such  cases  as  the  Gothic  izei  yhcdan  sik  silban  taiiji\ 
('  who  makes  himself  king '). 

514.  In  like  manner,  in  the  case  of  phrases  like  er  hat  den 
namcn  Max,  the  pure  stem,  or,  in  default  of  the  existence  of  such, 
the  nominative,  should  stand;  and  this  is  the  case  in  German.  In 
Latin,  however,  such  a  construction  as  lactea  nomen  habet  (OviD) 
is  purely  poetical  and  post-classical.  In  classical  Latin  the  nomi- 
native stands  side  by  side  with  nomen  only  when  this  word  is  itself 
in  the  nominative,  so  that  concord  is  observed,  e.g.,  cui  nomen 
Arethusa  est  (ClCERO).+  At  the  same  time,  however,  we  sometimes  tK««-.iy. 53- 
find  the  name  made  to  agree  with  the  person  to  whom  it  is 
attributed,  e.g-.,  nomen  Mercurio  est  mihi  (PLAUTUS).t  A  coxx&- 1  Ampu. 
spending  vacillation  in  the  use  of  concord  is  seen  where  nomen  is 

S  XXXV*  47- 

in  the  accusative  case,  cf  filiis  duobus  Philippum  et  Alexandrum  et 
filiae  Apamam  nomina  imposuerat  (Liv.)§— ^/  Superbo  cognomen'''^^ ^^ 
facta   indiderunt  (ib.).||    This   vacillation   is   the   best   proof  that 
the  concord  in  this  case  did  not  spring  from  the  nature  of  the  case, 

'  Cf.  Ziemer,  p.  71. 


but  rather  from  a  certain  perplexity  felt  by  the  speakers,  who  in 
default  of  an  absolute  form  were  obliged  to  choose  a  case,  and 
in  the  process  sought  for  any  basis  of  usage  which  might  seem 
in  harmony  with  the  principle  of  concord  already  prevailing  in 

515.  A  similar  perplexity  arises  in  the  case  of  the  predicatival 
or  predicatival-attributive  noun  with  an  infinitive.  The  NHG.  is 
well  off  in  this  respect,  for  it  possesses  an  absolute  form  of  the 
adjective :  es  gluckte  ihm  unbekannt  zu  bleiben.  The  substantive 
appears,  when  it  is  necessary  to  use  a  particular  case  clearly 
marked  as  such,  invariably  in  the  nominative ;  we  find  not  merely 
er  strebt  danach  beriihmt  zu  werden,  but  also  es  steht  dir  frei  als 
verstdndiger  viann  zu  handeln.  In  Latin  the  nominative  stands  if 
a  connexion  with  the  subject  of  the  governing  verb  is  possible  :  e.g. 

*  Ter.  Ad. 

'25-  pater  esse  disce*o7nitto  iratus  esse  ;  in  poetry  we  find  such  expres- 

t  iv.  2.        sions  as  ait  fuisse  naviiim  celerrimus  (Catull.)  ;  \rettulit  Ajax  esse 

^         ...  .Jovis  pronepos  (OviD)  jjand  similarly  in  Greek,  even  in  the  case  of 

'■*'  the  infinitive  used  substantivally,  in  whatever  case  this  may  stand  ; 

opkr/ovrai,    tov    tt/scoto?    e/tao-ro?    y{yveer6ai    (ThUCYDIDES)  ;     eSo^e 

Trdacrocpo^  elvai  Sia  to  avro^  fir]  ol6<;  t    elvai  (PlaTO).      In  Greek 

such  connexion  is  found  even  with  a  genitive  or  dative  depending 

on   the   governing   sentence ;    as    in    diracrov  dvdyKr}    to3    Tvpdvvtp 

■7ro\e/j,ia)    elvau    (Plato)  ;     oi    AaKeSaifiovioi    Kvpov    iSeovTo    (is 

irpo0vjx,OTdTov  7r/3o?  tov  -jroXefiov  jevea-6ai  (Xenophon).     In  Latin 

too  we  find  the  connexion  with  a  dative,  though  to  a  more  limited 

extent ;  cf  ammo  otioso  esse  impero  (Terence)  ;  da  mihifallere,  da 

%Ep.  I. iv.  justo  sanctoque  videi-i  (HoR.)  •,%nec  fortibus  illic  profuit  armentis  nee 

WMet.ym.    equis  velocibiis  esse  (OviD)  ;||and  commonly  in  the  case  oi  licet.    At 


the  same  time  after  licet  niihi  we  sometimes  meet  with  the  accu- 

?9.^'''"^'"'""  sative  (e.g.  si  civi  Romano  licet  esse  Gaditantim,  CiCERO)  jITthis 

construction  is  to  be  explained  by  the  fact  that  the  accusative  is 



the  ordinary  case  of  the  subject  with  the  infinitive.^  Cf.  Ziemer, 
p.  96. 

516.  I  proceed  to  cite  a  few  cases  in  which  no  concord  is  carried 
out,  and  indeed  is  to  some  extent  incapable  of  being  carried  out. 
In  these  cases,  in  default  of  the  pure  stem,  which  is  the  only  form 
really  justifiable,  its  place  has  been  supplied  by  the  nominative. 
In  German,  for  instance,  such  expressions  are  common  as  dent  als 
eine  schreiende  ungerechtigkeit  bezeichenten  befehle,  mein  beruf  als 
lehrer,  even  such  as  die  stellung  des  kdnigs  als  erster  burger  des 
staates ;  in  einer  lage  wie  die  seinige  side  by  side  with  der  seinigen. 
In  Latin  we  find  such  constructions  as  Sempronius  causa  ipse  pro 
se  dicta  dantnatur;   flumen  Albim    transcendit,  longius  penetrata 

Germania  quam  quisquani  priorum  (Tacitus).*  In  these  cases  no  *^«».  iv. 


doubt  ipse  and  quisquam  depend  upon  the  subject  of  the  finite 
verb,  but  belong  strictly  speaking  to  the  ablative  absolute  only, 
which  offers  them  no  immediate  connecting  link.^ 

517.  The  speaker  is  specially  apt  to  feel  perplexity  in  cases 
where  a  grammatical  concord  is  fi'om  the  sense  impossible,  and  a 
third  clause  comes  in  which  custom  has  led  us  to  expect  to  agree 
with  both.  We  have  to  decide  in  favour  of  one  or  the  other,  and 
in  the  case  of  such  decision,  usage  may  establish  itself  differently  in 
different  languages,  while  it  may  actually  vary  in  the  same  language. 

518.  In  the  case  of  subject,  predicate,  and  copula,  the  original  variation 

of  concord 

and  normal  rule  unquestionably  is  that  the  copula,  like  every  other  between  two 

parts  of  a 

verb,  follows  the  number  of  the  subject ;  and  accordingly  we  find  sentence. 
in  English  such  cases  as  it  was  my  orders,  what  is  six  winters  ?  \  m.'i.  3. 


in  French  dest  eux,  §  detail  les  petites  ties ;  in  Latin  neque  pax  est  ^"f-^^''- 
induciae  (Gellius  ||).    In  German,1f  however,  when  the  predicate  is  ^J^J^^^J^ 
plural,  the  copula  is  used  in  the  same  number,  as  das  sind  zwei  °''^"  ^ ''°' 

It  Drager  § 
^  See  on  this  point  Madvig,  Kl.  schr.,  sqq. 

verschiedene  dinge.      Other  languages  have  similar  usages ;    thus  ^^^ 

344         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.        [Ch. 

in  Greek  we  find  to  ^(ojpiov  rovro,  oirep  irporepov  'Ewea  ohoi, 
iicaXovvTo  (Thucydides),  and  in  French  we  find  such  expressions 
as  ce  sont  Id.  des  vertus  de  roi.  This  usage  seems  due  to  the  fact 
that  the  plural  makes  itself  more  characteristically  felt  than  the 
singular.  In  several  languages,  however,  the  converse  usage  is 
possible ;  viz.,  the  copula  in  the  singular  is  added  to  a  plural 
subject,  and  to  a  singular  predicate ;  cf.  such  Greek  sentences  as 
*  Jug.  i8.  at  j^pprf'ylai,  iKavov  eiiSaifMovelai;  arnxelov  eari  (AnT.)  ;^  such  Latin 
ones  as  /oca  quae  Numidia  appellatur  (Sallust)  ;*such  English 
ones  as  two  paces  in  the  vilest  earth  is  room  enough  (SHAKESPEARE)  ; 
the  Spanish  los  encantisados  era  gente  medrosa  (Cervantes)  ;  and 
the  NHG.  falsche  wege  ist  dem  herrn  ein  greuel  (Lu.).  We  find  a 
corresponding  use  in  the  person  of  the  verb, — cf.  the  English  it 
was  you,  is  that  you  f  the  French  c'est  moi,  cest  nous,  cest  vous,  in 
the  older  form  of  the  language  [in  Regnier  v.  Diez  p.  830]  we  actu- 
ally find  cest  eux.  On  the  other  hand,  we  find  in  NHG.  das  waren 
Sie,  sind  Sie  das  ?     O.  FR.  ce  ne  suis  je  pas,  c'estez  vous. 

519.  In  the  case  of  the  anticipatory  undefined  subject  with 
logical  subject  and  predicate,  we  find  that  in  French  the  use  is 
to  write  such  sentences  as  rarement  il  arrive  des  revolutions,  il  est 
des  gens  de  bien.  On  the  other  hand,  we  find  in  German,  es 
geschehen  umwdlzungen. 

520.  A  participle  used  as  predicate  or  as  copula  may  follow  in 
gender  and  number  the  predicatival  substantive  instead  of  the 
subject.     Cf.  the  Greek  iravTa  hvri'yqtn'i  ovaa  rvyx^dvei,  (Plato)  ;  the 

I.  ii.  44-  Latin  paupertas  mihi  onus  visum  (TERENCE)  ^^nisi  honos  ignominia 
xp.Baito.-i.put'^n'^  eji?  (Cicero)  ;J  on  the  other  hand,  we  find  S  emir  amis  puer 
§  i.  =..         ""^^  credita  est  (JUSTIN).§  A  similar  usage  prevails  in  the  case  of  the 

predicatival  accusative ;  cf  the  Greek  t^v  ^Soi'^k  Stm/cere  (09  ar^adov  ov 
I  x^cix  14     (^^^'^°)  '  "^^"^  attributively  as  the  Greek  ^9  dvyaTepa<},  -n-aiSui  ovra 

(Demosthenes)  ;  the  Latin  ludi/uere,  Megalesia  appellata  (LlVY).|| 
1  Cf.  Thompson,  Gh.  Syn.,  §  24,  and  the  examples  cited  there  from  Eng.  and  Fr. 



521.  The  predicate,  instead  of  following  the  subject,  may  follow 
some  apposition  belonging  to  it ;  of  @fj^at,  7ro\t?  acrrvyeoTcov,  ix 
fx,ecrr)<i  rrji;  'EXXciSo?  avijpTraa-rai,  (Aeschines)  ;   Latin,   Corinthuvt 

totius  Graeciae  lumen  extinctum  esse  voluerunt  {ClCE.^O);*Volsinii*Leg.Man. 
oppidum  Tuscorum  concrematuin  est;  NHG.  die  Aegypter  aber,  dies 
harte  und  gesetzmdssige  volk,  schlug  gleich  die  form  der  regel  und 
der  gewohnheit  auf  ihre  versuche  (Herder).  This  holds  good 
even  when  the  sentence  is  turned  into  the  ablative  absolute  ;  omni 
ornatu  orationis  tamquam  veste  detracta  (ClC^RO).^  In  connexion  t zfr^i!.  75. 
with  a  distributival  apposition  we  find  the  singular,  in  spite  of  the 
fact  that  the  subject  is  plural ;  cf,  al  ri-xyai,  rb  avTi]<;  eKacrrr)  epyov 
ipyd^erai,  (Plato)  ;  die  sick  nach  des  meisters  tode  sogleich  ent- 
zweiten  und  offenbar  jeder  nur  eine  beschrdnkte  sinnesart  filr  das 
rechte  erkannte  (GOETHE)  ;  d&  die  Kahetine  und  die  sarjande  von 
Semblidac  ieslicher  stner  kUnste  pflac  (Wolfram). J  ,^..  ^  ^ 

522.  More  striking  is  the  construction  whereby  the  predicate  is 
made  to  agree  with  a  noun  compared  with  the  subject  (i)  in  gender, 
magis pedes  quam  anna  tuta  j«<«^  (Sallust)  ;  (2)  in  number,  menon 
taiitum  literae  quantum  longinquitas  temporis  mitigavit  {ClCE^O);  ei 
cariora  semper  omnia  quam  decus  fuit  (Sallust)  ;  (3)  in  gender 
and  number,  as  quand  on  est  j'eunes,  riches  et  jolies,  comme  vous, 
mesdames,  on  nen  est  pas  rdduites  d  V artifice  (Diderot)  ;  (4)  in 
person,  ogoi  wcrirep  rfp.el'i  iirt^ovXevofieda  (Thucydides)  ;  (5) 
in  person  and  number,  as  17  tv^v  ael  ^iXriov  rj  ij/iet?  •^/Mmv 
aiircov  i-jn/MeXovfieda  (DEMOSTHENES).  The  concord  of  the 
predicate  is  also  curious  with  a  second  subject  connected  by 
the  words  and  not,  as  heaven  and  not  we  have  safely  fought  to-day 
(Shakespeare)  §  \y.  Matzner,  vol.  ii.,  p.  152].  ?^"-^Hy.  iv. 

523.  In  Greek  an  apposition,  if  it  is  separated  from  the  noun 
to  which  it  belongs  by  a  relative  sentence,  may  follow  the  relative 
pronoun  in  case  ;  as,  Ku/cXwtto?  Ks-^oKmrai,  6v  6<f)6aXfiov  aXdaxrev, 

346         PRINCIPLES  OF  THE  HISTORY  OF  LANGUAGE.       [Ch. 

avrideov  noXvcfiTjfiov   (HOM.    Od.) ;  ol  -iraXaiol  eKelvoi,   S)v  ovofiara 

IJ.eyd\a  Xeyerai,  IIiTTaKav  re  xal  Blavroi  (PlaTO). 

524.  A  demonstrative  or  relative,  instead  of  following  the 
substantive  to  which  it  refers,  may  follow  a  noun  predicated  of  it, 
as  in  Latin  Leucade  sunt  haec  decreta ;    id  caput  Arcadiae  erat 

•xxxiii.  17.  {Jji-v.)  ■*  quod  St    non  Jiominis  summum   bonum   quaereremus,  sed 

cujusdam  animantis,  is  autem  esset  nihil  aliud  nisi  animus  (CiC.) ; 

"^  ^'^^'^'''  animal  hoc  quern,   vocamus  hominem   (CiC.)  ;t «   sunt,   quant   tu 

XproSesi.   natiomm   appellasti  (ClC.);t2«  pratis   Flaminiis,  quein  ntuic  cir- 

45-  ■ 

cum  Flaminium  appellant  (LiV.)  ;§  Greek  dto^o'i,  r)v  alBm  eliroLbev 

§  111.  54. 

(Pla.).     The  predicate  of  the   main  sentence   may  then   follow 
Com.  ii.  19.  the  relative  pronoun  ;  cf    Carmonenses,  quae  est  longe  firmissima 
totius  provinciae  civitas,  per  se  cohortes  ejecit\ 

525.  A  relative  pronoun  which  logically  refers  to  an  undefined 
subject  usually  follows  the  defined  predicate  which  belongs  to  it, 
and  of  course  the  predicate  of  the  pronoun  as  well.  Thus  the 
Germans  have  to  say,  es  war  ein  inann,  der  es  mir  gesagt  hat;  es 
sind  die  besten  menschen,  die  dir  das  raten.  In  the  same  way  in 
French,  dest  eux  qui  ont  bdti.  In  French  it  is  further  to  be  observed 
that  the  person  of  the  verb  in  the  relative  sentence  follows  the 
defined  predicate,  as  dest  moi  seul  qui  suis  coupable.  On  the  other 
hand,  the  NHG.  use  is  to  say,  du  bist  es,  der  mich  gerettet  hat. 

526.  In  a  relative  sentence  the  verb  goes  into  the  first  or  second 
person  in  connexion  with  the  subject  of  the  governing  sentence, 
although  the  relative  pronoun  refers  to  the  predicate,  and  the  third 
person  would  consequently  in  strictness  be  demanded  ;  cf  in  Latin 
non  sum  ego  is  consul,  qui  nefas  arbitrer  Gracchos  laudare  CClC.) ; 

1_  Favi.  V.  \  /  ' 

"'>■  6-         neque  tu  is  es,  qui  nescias  (ib.lT)  ;  English,  if  thou  beest  he,  who  in  the 
***p.L.  i.     happy  realms  of  light  didst  outshine  myriads  (MiLTON  **)  ;  /  am  the 


person,  that  have  had  (Goldsmith  ff).     This  kind  of  construction 
tt  G^  iViA    jjjigjj^.  certainly  be  equally  well  regarded  as  contamination,  in  which 

XVII.]  ON  CONCORD.  347 

case,  in  the  last  example  given,  the  thoughts,  I  am  the  person  who 
has  had,  and  /  have  had,  must  have  become  confused.  The  same 
holds  good  of  a  combination  like  eine  der  penibelsten  aufgaben, 
die  meiner  tatigkeit  auferlegt  werden  konnte  instead  of  konnten 
(GOE.).  With  this  we  may  compare  allaro  barno  betsta  thero  the  io 
giboran  uurdi  (Heliand)  and  secga  cenegum  }drape  ttrledses  trade 
sceawode,  '  to  one  of  the  men  who  looked  at  the  inglorious  track ' 
(Beowulf)  ;  and  so  commonly  in  Old  Saxon  and  Anglo-Saxon. 

527.  The  predicate  or  attribute,  instead  of  agreeing  with  the 
subject  or  the  word  which  it  defines,  may  agree  with  a  genitive 
depending  on  it,  cf.  ^\9e  8'  eVt  y}rvxv  @97/3atoi;  Tetpeaiao  xpv(Teov 
(TKriTTTpov  exov  (HOM.).*  Stranger  still  is   the  English  use,  fhere*oa.x\.ga. 
are  eleven  days'  journey  from  Horeb  unto  Kadesh-barnea  {T>Gnt  i.  2). 

In  French,  the  idiom  is,  to  say,  la  pliipart  de  ses  amis  I'abandon- 
nerent,  but  la  plupart  du  peuple  voulait.  If  it  often  happens  that 
after  a  collective  with  a  plural  partitive  genitive  the  plural  stands 
(in  such  an  instance  as  eine  anzahl  soldaten  sind  angekommen),  the 
genitive  certainly  does  not  need  to  be  regarded  as  the  only  reason 
for  the  plural,  since  such  an  usage  is  possible  in  itself  after  the 
collective :  see  Chap,  xv.,  section  447. 

528.  In  isolated  cases  we  find  in  Latin  an  attribute  referring  to 
a   person   addressed,  placed   in   the   vocative,  as  quibus,  Hector, 

ab  oris  exspectate  venis  ?  (VERG.t)  \cf.  Hor.,  Sat.  ii.  6].  .  ^^^  ^ 

529.  We  may  gather,  then,  from  the  examples  given,  the  way  ^^^' 
in  which  concord  has  spread  beyond  the  area  which  strictly  speak- 
ing belongs  to  it.  We  are  able,  accordingly,  to  form  some  idea  of 
the  way  in  which  this  process  grew  up  at  a  period  so  early  as  to 
reach  back  far  beyond  all  our  tradition.  No  doubt  we  have  to 
note  the  fact  that  concord  was  not  so  inevitable  in  the  oldest 
stages  of  language,  because  absolute  forms  without  inflexional 
suffixes  were  then  the  rule. 




First  rudi- 
ments from 

530.  Let  us  now  consider  the  first  rudiments  from  which  con- 
cord proceeded.  This  process  bears  a  certain  analogy  to  the 
concord  of  the  verb  in  number  and  person.  Verbal  forms  seem 
mostly  to  owe  their  origin  to  the  coalition  of  a  personal  pronoun 
with  the  tense  stem.  We  must  in  any  case  suppose  a  period  in 
which  substantives  coalesced  in  the  same  way  with  the  stem,  and 
in  which  pronouns  could  precede  the  stem  as  well.  We  must 
therefore  suppose,  to  illustrate  by  an  instance,  that  it  was  possible 
to  say  gehen  vater,  vater  gehen  and  ich  gehen,  just  as  much  as  to 
s2iY  geken  ich,  gehen  du,  gehen  er,  etc.  There  are  various  non-Indo- 
European  languages,  such  as  the  Hungarian,  in  which  the  third 
person  singular  differs  from  the  other  persons  of  the  same  number 
by  dispensing  with  a  suffix.  In  these  languages,  then,  the  original 
plan  maintains  itself  of  coalition  according  to  the  formula  gehen 
vater  or  vater  gehen.  The  further  development  then  proceeds  from 
a  reduplication  of  the  subject,  a  process  not  without  analogies  at 
certain  stages  in  the  life  of  modern  languages  ;  cf.  der  kirchhof  er 
hegt  wie  am  tage,  die  glocke  sie  donnert  ein  mdchtiges  eins  ;  freilich 
ist  er  zu  preisen,  der  mann  (cf  supra,  p.  iiG);  je  le  sais,  moi,  il  ne 
voulut  pas,  lui ;  toi,  tu  vivras  vil  el  malheureiix.  [This  use  is  of 
course  very  common  in  English  and  German  ballad  poetry.]  We 
must  here  mention  the  anticipation  of  the  subject  by  means  of  an 
indefinite  es,  as  es  geniigt  ein  wort.  The  pronoun  originally  was 
doubled  only  in  cases  where  it  had  to  be  specially  emphasised. 
But  how  such  pronominal  reduplication  is  able  gradually  to  spread, 
and  especially  as  it  is  favoured  by  the  phonetic  reduction  of  the  pro- 
nominal forms,  is  shown  by  Bavarian  dialects  in  which  we  find  such 
curious  amalgams  as  the  following:  mir  hammer  {  =  wir  haben  wir) 
or  hammer  mir ;  ess  lebts  =  '  ihr  lebt  ihr'  or  lebts  ess.  The  process 
has  thus  repeated  itself  in  the  case  of  the  verbal  forms,  when 
already  made  and    finished,  which   at   an   earlier  period  was  ifl 

XVII.]  ON  CONCORD.  349 

operation  on  the  tense  stems.  The  pronouns  which  coalesce 
enclitically  have  become  fused  with  the  verb,  and  have  shown  an 
increasing  tendency  to  lose  their  original  character  of  the  subject 
of  the  verbs  with  which  they  are  connected.  In  the  IE.  original 
language  the  development  must  already  have  gone  so  far  that  the 
formula  vater gehen  was  entirely  replaced  by  the  formula  vater 
gehen  er.  The  suffixed  pronoun  however  maintains,  in  the  first 
place,  still  a  double  function.  In  certain  cases  it  still  serves  as  the 
subject  (as  in  the  Latin  lego,  legit)  ;  in  other  cases  it  is  merely  by 
the  concord  that  it  shows  its  relationship  with  the  subject  (as  pater 
legit,  ego  scribo).  In  most  IE.  languages  of  the  present  day  the 
second  function  alone  has  survived.  The  main  reason  which  has 
conduced  to  render  the  employment  of  a  second  subject-pronoun 
general,  is  this,  that  the  suffixes  were  no  longer  sufficient  for  the 
characterisation  of  the  forms.  For  the  rest,  the  concord  of  the 
verbal  predicate  with  the  subject  has  no  value  in  itself.  Thus  our 
personal  endings  would  merely  be  so  much  superfluous  ballast,  did 
they  not,  on  the  one  hand,  serve  to  mark  the  verb  as  such,  and,  on 
the  other  hand,- in  certain  cases  to  express  the  difference  between 
different  moods;  though  such  service  is,  indeed,  but  very  imperfectly 
performed,  and  in  an  unnecessarily  complicated  way. 

531.  As  for  the  concord  of  nouns,  that  of  gender  and  number 
at  any  rate  is  first  formed  in  the  pronoun  to  which  reference  is 
made,  to  which  grammatical  gender  also  owes  its  origin.  Concord 
in  case  first  appears  in  the  case  of  apposition.  Here,  likewise,  no 
absolute  necessity  exists  for  employing  the  case-sign  twice.^  At 
the  same  time  we  are  tempted  to  regard  the  apposition  to  one  part 

'  We  see  this  best  by  observing  that  at  a  more  recent  epoch,  when  the  connexion  is 
very  close,  the  principle  of  concord  is  again  given  up,  and  the  inflexion  of  the  first  com- 
ponent part  omitted  ;  cf.  mhg.  des  kunic  Guntheres  Up,  an  kiitiec  Artltses  hove  ;  NHG. 
Friedrich  Schillers,  des  herrn  Muller ;  even  in  Goelhe  we  find  des  herrn  CarlyWs,  etc. 
Hans  Sachs  even  says,  hen-  Achilli,  dem  ritter. 


of  the  sentence  as  a  repeated  employment  of  this  part.  A  concord 
in  gender  and  number  occurs  even  at  the  present  day  only  where 
it  is  demanded  by  the  nature  of  the  case.  The  concord  of  the 
attributive  and  predicative  adjective  can  have  grown  only  out  of 
the  substantive  used  as  an  apposition  or  as  a  predicate :  in  other 
words,  their  origin  reaches  back  to  an  epoch  in  which  the  adjec- 
tive had  not  yet  freed  itself  from  the  category  of  the  substantive, 
and  assumed  a  position  in  a  category  of  its  own.  The  starting- 
point  was  afforded  by  those  substantives  which  in  the  Latin 
grammars  are  called  mobilia,  such  as  coqims — coqua  ;  rex — regina, 
etc.  As  such  substantives  passed  into  adjectives  (cf  below,  Chap- 
ter XX.),  they  maintain  the  concord,  and  it  came  to  be  regarded  as 
of  the  essence  of  the  adjective. 

532.  The  concord  of  tense,  the  so-called  consecutio  temporum, 
has,  generally  speaking,  failed  to  extend  beyond  the  area  originally 
assigned  to  it.  The  exceptions  to  the  rules  laid  down  on  this  sub- 
ject show  that  the  tense  in  dependent  sentences  does  not,  strictly 
speaking,  follow  that  of  the  clause  on  which  such  sentence 
depends,  but  that  it  settles  itself  independently  on  principles  of 
its  own.  The  concord  of  the  mood,  which  sometimes  further 
affects  that  of  the  tense,  is  somewhat  more  extended.  Cf  the 
Latin  tantum  voluit  error,  ut,  corpora  cremata  cum  scirent,  tamen  ea 
fieri  apud  inferos  fingerent,  quae  sine  corporibus  nee  fieri  pos  sent  nee 
intelligi  (instead  of  possunt,  CiC.)  ■*invitus  feci,  ut  fortissimi  viri 
XVI.  37.        J'  Flaminii  fratreni  e  senatu  ejicerem  septem  annis  postquam  consul 

WeSen.m.fuisset  {fuerat,    ClC.);fcu7n   tiniidius  ageret,   quam   superioribus 


diebus  consuesset  (Caes.).^      The   assimilation   of  mood    is   toler- 
ably regular  in  mhg. 

•  1  Cf.  Draeger,  151,  5- 


Page  341, — Daz  man,  etc.     That  they  called  him  Baruch. 
Page  34i.—J>anzcijah,  etc.     (Those)  whom  he  called  or  named  apostles. 
Page  ZA1-—AUaro  barno,  etc.     The  best  of  all  children  (bairus)  of  those  that  ever  were 



THE   more  economical  or   more   abundant   use  of  linguistic  ReMve 
economy  of 
means  of  expressing  a  thought  is  determined  by  the  need,  expression 

depends  on 

It  cannot  indeed  be  denied  that  these  means  are  often  employed  the  need. 
in  luxurious  superfluity.  But,  on  the  whole,  our  linguistic  activity 
is  characterised  by  a  certain  trait  of  parsimony.  Everywhere  we 
find  modes  of  expression  forced  into  existence  which  contain 
only  just  so  much  as  is  requisite  to  their  being  understood.  The 
amount  of  linguistic  material  employed  varies  in  each  case  with 
the  situation,  with  the  previous  conversation,  with  the  relative 
approximation  of  the  speakers  to  a  common  state  of  mind. 
Under  some  conditions  a  word  may  speak  as  plainly  as  a  whole 
sentence  under  others.  If  we  take  as  a  standard  the  form  of 
expression  which  will  convey  a  thought  under  all  possible  condi- 
tions to  any  possible  hearer,  the  other  forms  in  use  appear  to  be 

534.  It  is  natural,  therefore,  that  what  is  called  ^^je  should  Ellipse 

either  to  be 

have   played   a  great   part  with  our  grammarians.      When   the  assumed  in  a 

.       ,  _  .  .       minimum  of 

terser   expression  is  invariably  referred  to  a  more  circumstantial  cases,  oreise 
equivalent  as  the  standard,   there   is   scarcely  any  limit  to   thenLdS^frt 
possible  assumption  of  ellipses.     The   abuses   to  which  this  led  °f^^4"sbn! 
in  the  sixteenth  and  seventeenth  centuries  are  well  known.     They 
were,  however,  only  an  extreme  result  of  conceptions  still  repre- 


sented  in  our  grammars.  This  standard  must  be  given  up,  anrl 
every  form  of  expression  be  apprehended  in  accordance  with  its 
origin  without  any  intrusion  of  alien  matter.  The  assumption 
of  eUipse  will  then  be  reduced  to  a  minimum.  Or  else,  the  notion 
of  ellipse  will  have  to  be  given  a  far  wider  application  than  it 
has  hitherto  had  ;  it  will  have  to  be  conceded  that  it  is  of  the 
essence  of  linguistic  expression  to  be  elliptical,  to  contain  less 
than  the  full  contents  of  what  is  thought,  so  that,  in  regard  to 
ellipse,  the  various  modes  of  expression  differ  only  in  degree. 
Words  or  535.  We  will  coHsidcr  first  the  cases   in  which  a  word   or  a 


suppiitd.  phrase  is  supplied  from  what  precedes  or  from  what  follows.  Here 
the  question  immediately  presents  itself,  whether  and  how  far 
we  are  justified  in  the  expressions  supplied.  We  saw  above  (p.  129) 
that  an  element  of  a  sentence  may  be  posited  more  than  once. 
The  other  elements  then  assume  a  similar  relation  to  both 
positions.  It  will  hardly  be  contended  for  all  cases  that  these 
other  elements  would  in  the  normal  sentence  be  also  doubly 
posited,  that  they  are  actually  posited  once,  and  a  second  (third, 
fourth)  time  have  to  be  supplied.  Least  of  all  is  the  notion 
of  supplying  applicable  in  the  construction  airo  koivov.  But  in 
such  a  sentence  as  he  saw  me  and  grew  pale  it  will  likewise  not 
be  thought  necessary  to  supply  he  with  grew  pale ;  nor,  in  such 
a  combination  as  in  fear  and  hope,  will  any  one  think  of  '  supplying ' 
the  preposition  before  hope,  because  we  can  also  say  in  fear  and  in 
hope.  It  is  a  question,  however,  whether  the  notion  of  '  supplying ' 
cannot  be  wholly  dropped,  and  replaced  by  that  of  single  positing 
with  plural  reference.  Only,  in  this  case,  we  must  further  cease 
to  conceive  what  is  commonly  called  a  sentence  as  a  closed 
•  and  independent  unity,  and  regard  it  rather  as  a  link  in  a  con- 

tinuous series. 

536.  It  is  customary  to  assume  ellipse  in  cases  such  as  die 


deutsche  unci  die  franzosische  sprache,  and  still  more  decidedly  in 
the   form   die  deutsche  sprache  und  die  franzosische.      But    that 
wc  have  here  merely  a   pair  of  elements  standing  in  the  same 
relation  to  a  third,  is  shown  by  the  fact  that  in  other  languages 
though   not  in    German,   similar    modes   of    expression    can    be 
replaced  by  others  in  which  the  two  elements  are  treated  as  a 
unity,  and  attached  as  such  to  the  third,  which  now  becomes 
properly  speaking,   the   second.     This   is   shown   by   the   use  of 
the  plural.     We  say,  for  instance,  quarta  et  Martia  le£-iofies* (beside cf^^'Pam. 
legio  Martia  quartaque,  both  in   Cicero),  Falernum  et  Campanuin' ''' 
agros  (for  agrum,  LiV.) ;  t   Italian,  le  lingue  greca  e  latina  (beside*  ''^"-  's- 
la  lingtia  greca  e  latina) ;  French,  les  langues  frangaise  et  allemande, 
les  onzieme  et  douzieme  siecles ;  English,  the  German  and  French 

537.  Similar  is  the  case  where  a  single  common  element  is 
accompanied  by  a  plurality  of  mutually  corresponding  elements  ; 
e.g.  John  writes  well,  James  badly.  That  the  current  assumption 
of  an  ellipse  is  here  likewise  superfluous,  nay  inadmissible,  is 
shown  again  by  the  use  in  many  languages  of  the  plural  predicate ; 
of.  Latin,  Palatium  Romulus,  Remus  Aventinum  ad  inaugurandum 
templa  capiunt  (Liv.) ;+  and  similarly  with  the  ablative  absolute  :  *  i.  e. 
ille  Antiocho,  hie  Mithridate  pulsis  (Tac.).§    Even   in   the   case    , 

'  jr  \  /  o  SiAnn.  111. 

of  disjoined  subjects  the  plural  predicate  is  in  many  languages*^" 
as  current  as  the  singular  ;  cf.  Latin,  si  quid  Socrates  aut  Aristippus 
contra  morem  consuetudinemque  civilem  fecerint  locutive  sint  (CiC.)  ; 
haec  si  neque  ego  neque  tu  fecimus  (Cic.) ;  Roma  an  Carthago  jura 
gentibus  darent  (Liv.);||  French,  ou  la  honte  ou  I' occasion  le  detrom-u^^-z'h^; 
peront ;  ni  la  douceur,  ni  la  force  riy  peuvent  m«;**English,  nor 
wood,  nor  tree,  nor  bush  are  there  (Scott).     This  plural  has  in-„cy-Die2. 
any  case  originated  from  instances  in  which  the  copulative  con- 
nexion could  be  substituted  without  essential  alteration  of  meaning, 



and  thence  been  extended  by  analogy  to  cases  where  no  such 
substitution  was  possible.  It  proves  that  for  the  linguistic 
instinct  the  predicate  has  been  posited  once  and  not  twice. 

538.  Instances  of  an  element  common  to  both  principal  and 
subordinate  sentence  (or,  if  it  be  preferred,  to  be  supplied  in 
one  of  them)  occur  in  the  variety  of  airo  koivov  discussed  on 
p.  133,  and  also  in  relative  sentences,  which  have  a  different 
origin  ;  e.g.  the  Latin  {qui  tacet  consentit).  Further,  in  MHG.,  when 
a  subordinate  sentence  without  conjunction  stands  in  the  relation 
of  object  to  the  principal  sentence :  da  wande  ich  stcete  funde 
(Minnesinger) ;  her  sprach  were  intrunnin  (Rother).  Rarer  are 
other  cases  :  nune  weiz  ich  wie  es  beginne  (TRISTAN)  ;  wes  er 
im  gedAhte  das  elliu  diu  wolde  bedwingen  (JUDITH)  ;  mitthiu  ther 
heilant  gisah  thio  menigi  steig  ufan  berg  {Fragm.  theot.) ;  kem 
einer  her  mit  dent  opfer,  brecht  auch  vil  golts  darvon  (H.  Sachs)  ; 
da  ihn  die  schone  fraw  erblicket,  winckt  ihm  (ib.)  ;  was  ich  da 
trdumend  jauchzt  und  litt,  muss  wachend  nun  erfahren  (GOE.)  ; 
dass,  indem  er  ihn  gesegnete,  ihm  gebot  und  sprach  (Lu.). 

539.  It  occurs  very  commonly  in  dialogue  that  words  of  one 
speaker  are  not  repeated  by  the  other.  But  this  will  not  serve 
to  justify  the  assumption  that  the  words  are  necessarily  supplied 
For  dialogue  itself  must,  not  less  than  the  single  speech,  be 
regarded  as  a  continuous  and  connected  whole. 

540.  It  strikes  us  now  as  a  singular  anomaly  when  an  element 
belongs  in  common  to  two  sentences  which,  instead  of  being 
continuous,  are  separated  by  a  third  sentence;  cf.  swaz  er  den 
kunic  e  geschalt,  des  wart  ir  zehenshmt  mer,  und  (er)  jach,  si  wmre 
gar  ze  hir  (WOLFRAM)  ;  wer  mit  wdlfen  zvil  geulen,  der  muss  auch 
mit  in  heulen,  sunst  tun  sie  sich  bald  meulen  und  (er)  ist  bei  in 
unwert  (H.  Sachs).  Similarly,  when  the  sentences  to  which  the 
element  is  jointly  referable  are  only  formally  continuous,  without 



any  direct  relation  to  one  another ;  cf.  s6  ist  geschehen  des  ir  dd 
gert  und  wcenent  ('ye  ween'),  mir  st  wol  geschehen  (Hartmann 
VON  Aue). 

541.  The  common  element  may  either  stand  between  those 
which  are  not  common,  so  that  it  is  referable  with  equal  ease  to 
either  {atto  koivov),  or  it  stands  at  the  outset  or  at  the  close  of 
the  whole  sentence ;  it  is  then  nearer  no  doubt  to  the  one,  but 
still  without  difficulty  referable  also  to  the  other ;  or,  finally,  it 
is  inserted  in  one  of  the  groups  to  which  it  is  jointly  referable, 
in  which  case  it  appears,  in  the  first  instance,  to  belong  to  this 
group  alone.  In  modern  German  such  insertions  are  only  familiar 
in  the  first  group.  It  is  here  that  the  hypothesis  of  supplying  the 
second  (third,  etc.)  group  has  the