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Full text of “Vocational English, a textbook for commercial and technical schools”

Full text of “Vocational English, a textbook for commercial and technical schools”












' Hl< \(,n NEW YOUR 




Each year it becomes more difficult for an American to "get 
along in the world" unless he speaks and writes good English. 
This book is an attempt to provide the main essentials of an 
Kntdish training sufficient for competent work in any ordinary 

Part One presents the principles of correct English the 
laws of the language as to word formation, spelling, punctuation, 
and, above all, correct sentence making. The student who 
thoroughly masters Part One will not make the common 
blunders that mar the writing even of many college students 
blunders that sometimes give rise to the charge that our 
education fails to prepare young people for business. 

Part Two provides for practice in composition, both oral 
and written, of the kinds most directly useful in everyday life. 

It is not intended that Part One as a whole shall precede 
Part Two in teaching. Both parts will naturally be used to 
some extent side by side, the teacher assigning composition 
work from Part Two along with study of the principles 
developed in Part One. The following specific suggestions as 
to the use of the book may be helpful: 

(1) The first seven chapters make an obvious natural unit, 

providing a review of the grammatical foundation for 
>rrect speaking and writing. This study begins with 
the sentence and its main elements, because the 
fundamental necessity of intelligible composition is 
proper sentence structure. 

(2) Chapter VIII (Punctuation) can be used at any time 

after the student has a fair knowledge of correct sen- 
tence making, and will be valuable for reference 
throughout the coin 

(3) Chapters IX-XI inclusive may be studied at the 

teacher's discretion in relation to other parts of the 
work; but the word study of ( 'hapter IX will be help- 
ful as a ba>is f -.elling review in Chapter X. 


(4 ) Chapter XII is merely a source for exercises, which the 

teacher will assign whenever they fit. 

(5) The first few chapters of Part Two provide for a largo 

; i mount of simple and practical composition, with u 
minimum of technical theory. The main essentials 
as to planning and paragraphing are given in Chapter 
XIV; practice directed toward the securing of good 
sentence structure is provided by the exercises of 
Chapter XVI; sound principles as to choice of words 
and the avoidanc.e of wordiness are elucidated in 
Chapter XVII. 

(6) Chapters XIX-XXI inclusive contain material a> to 

the form and language of letters that may be used 
whenever the teacher wishes to assign letter writing. 
Chapters XXII and XXIII are especially adapted for 
the latter part of a business course. 

The book assumes the ordinary grammar-school training in 
Knglish; but the material is so developed as to be teachable 
even to students who have rather hazy notions of grammar. 
For such students additional help will be found in the Glossary 
of Technical Terms in the Appendix (pages 351 ff.). 

The 1 material of this book is the result of experience and ex- 
periment. The exercises were largely collected from the work 
of students, and nearly all of them have been used successfully 
in the classroom for several years. The choice of topics for 
treatment has been determined primarily by the necessitie> 
arising from bad English. The procedure in selecting material 
has been from observed faults back to the principles which, 
once understood and diligently practiced, will eradicate t! 
faults and establish right habits of expression. Material that 
does not function in this way has been rejected. It is 
believed, therefore, that the book presents a minimum 
of fundamentals for a maximum of needs of the young person 
who must make a living. 

Teachers of "business English" or "commercial English" 
have generally found that their cottrses must be primarily 


English. Laying great stress on business forms for students 
who do not know the laws of the language is like teaching 
advanced rescue methods to a boy who cannot swim. Con- 
sequently the material of this book is mainly English, only 
secondarily business, and the English part of it, at least, will be 
practically useful to any class of students. 

Attention is invited to the following special features: 

(a) It presents a complete review of those portions of 

English grammar that are fundamental to correct 
spelling, punctuation, and especially sentence struc- 
ture. A Glossary of Technical Terms is provided for 

(b) The grammatical exercises are all designed to cultivate 

right habits of expression and eradicate common 
faults in writing. These exercises are very numerous 
and comprehensive, illustrating all the material de- 
veloped in the text. 

(c) Abundant composition subjects of a simple and practi- 

cal character an; ;iven, in such variety as to enlist 
the interest of any student. 

(d) The list of common word roots (pages 151-153) pro- 

vides an effective method of enlarging the student's 

(e) The lists of words commonly misspelled or mispro- 

nounced (pa^es 171-179) were prepared with great 
care to include the most frequent offenders. 
Punctuation is treated in a new inductive manner, by 








XXII. BraciAL HI- book does not include 4 a systematic discussion of 
.i^h grammar as a whole, but treats only those laws t hat bear 
directly upon common errors in the spoken or written language. 
The Mudent need not fear that tlw following page- will con- 
tain much of the technical grammar he may have thought 
uninteresting or unrelated to his daily needs. There urn- 
hou n-iderable attention to the fundamental lau 

the lanLruaire. | n-titute the ground plan on which all 

CM ;md writ'inn rest. 


3. The Sentence. The purpose of all use of language 
is to communicate ideas to tell something to other people so 
that they cannot fail to understand it. The primary unit in 
accomplishing this purpose is the sentence. Fragmentary 
groups of words may give some vague notion of what one has 
in mind, but ordinarily one does not really say anything until 
he forms a sentence. 

4. Requirements for a Sentence. A properly constructed 
sentence divides naturally into two parts: 

(a) The subject, presenting the person or thing talked about ; 

(b) The predicate, telling what is said about the subject. 

Thus in a sentence of the simplest possible form, 

Birds | fly 

birds is the subject; ./fa/ is the predicate. 

In addition to having a subject and a predicate a sentence 
must express a complete thought. Unless their wintjs are 
clipped has a subject their wings and a predicate arc clipped; 
but it is incomplete because it does not toll irhnt /m// 
"unless their wings are clipped." 

In sentences that irive commands, the subject is often not 
expressed, but is readily understood to he you. 


With this exception there should always be a clearly expressed 
subject; and without exception other than in exclamatory frag- 
ments (e. g., To the moat irith him!) there should be a predicate. 
Expert writers sometimes treat fragmentary expressions a< 
sentences, but ordinary students, stenographers, and busi: 
men cannot do so in their everyday writing without risk of 
being thought careless or ignorant. 1 

A sentence like "Birds fly" may, of course, be expanded 
almost indefinitely by the addition of details, thus: 

Huge black birds of prey called vultures | fly in ever 
narrowing circles in the rear of the advancing herd. 

J A few kinds of writing, for special reasons, do not demand complete sentences. 
Telegrams are much condensed because of the cost, and the text of advertisements often 
includes fragmentary sentences. 


Here the words before the vertical mark ( | ) make up the 
subject; the words after that mark, the predicate. 

5. Subject Substantive and Predicate Verb. In the 
expanded example in the preceding section, one word of the 
complete subject is readily recognized as the most important. 
This word birds you know to be a noun; and you also 
know that the principal word of the subject is always a noun, 
a pronoun, or a word or group of words equivalent to a noun 
or pronoun. The principal word of the subject is technically 
called the subject substantive. 

Similarly, fly is readily recognized as the most important 
word the asserting word in the complete predicate, and is 
called the predicate verb. 

6. Modifiers. All the words except birds before the vertical 
line in the last example in Section 4 tell something about the 
birds, and are therefore modifiers of the subject substantive. 
In the predicate all the words except fly tell how and where the 
birds fly, and are modifiers of the predicate verb. 

7. Additional Elements of the Predicate. Besides such 
modifiers as are illustrated in the sentence about the birds, 
there may be other elements in the predicate, of which the 
following are the most important: 

(a) Sometimes the action expressed by the predicate verb 
operates directly upon some person or thing, and we have a 
direct object. 

Mi-i.Es: John struck James. 

The ship struck a rock. 

(b) Sometimes, in addition to a direct object, there is a word 
indieatiii -on or thing to or for whom (or which) some- 
thing i- done. This word is the indirect object. 

.lolin n-'tvc me a book. 
I n:ivc tl;. 

(c) Sometimes (especially after the various forms of the 
verb f>., there b a word in (he predicate that defines or m< 


the same person or thing as the subject. Such a word is called 
a predicate noun (or pronoun). 

EXAMPLES: Franklin was a printer. 

It was he who secured help from France. 

(d) Sometimes there is a word in the predicate (not a noun 
or pronoun) that describes some quality of the subject. Such 
a word is called a predicate adjective. 

1 : x AMPLE : Chalk is white. 

8. Groups of Words as Elements in the Sentence. The 
groups of words known as phrases and clauses may serve as 
elements of the sentence. A phrase is a group of two or more 
related words, without a subject and predicate, which taken 
together are used as one of the elements of a sentence. 


(a) The phrase as subject: Keeping house is hard work. 

(b) The phrase as modifier of the subject substantive: The 

book on the table is mine. 

(c) The phrase as object: He denied going to the house. 

(d) The phrase as modifier in the predicate: He lived in a small 


The clause is a group of words containing a subject and a 
predicate. An entire clause may serve in the place more com- 
monly occupied by a single word that is, as an element of a 
sentence; or a principal clause a clause making a complete 
assertion may be a whole sentence. 


(a) The clause as subject: Whoever finds the money may keep it. 

(b) The clause as object: He appointed whoever was qualified. 

(c) The clause as predicate noun: That is what I want to know. 

(d) The clause as a modifier in the subject: The man who left 

the bundle may have it. 

(e) The clause as a modifier in the predicate: I will come when 

I can. 

Many other examples might be given. The important 
thing to remember is that a properly constructed group of 


words may have the same grammatical uses in the sentence 
that single words have. 

9. Kinds of Sentences. According to construction, there 
are three readily recognized kinds of sentences. 

(a) A simple sentence makes but one assertion, consists of 
but one clause. 

MPI.K: After the destruction of the Lusitania, indignation ran 
high in America. 

The subject of a simple sentence may include two or more 
nouns or pronouns connected by some such word as and, or 
the predicate may include two or more asserting words; but if 
there is only one clause, the sentence is simple. 

EXAMPLES of simple sentences with compound parts: 

(a) Compound subject: John and Mary ran. 

(b) Compound predicate: John ran and caught the car. 

(c) Compound subject and compound predicate: John and Mary 

ran and caught the car. 

(b) A complex sentence contains one principal clause and 
one or more subordinate clauses. Thus when a word in a 
sentence is modified by a clause in exactly the same way that 

:i noun is modified by an adjective, or a verb by an adverb, 
we 1. 'inplex sentence. 

.ii'i.i:: The man who know* huu.^lf to he dishonest seldom holds 
i!y eye. 

Thi> i< nearly equivalent to saying, The dishonest man, etc.; 
the group of words in italics is plainly used a* an adjective to 
modify the noun man. 'This group of words, however, h 
subject of its own the relative pronoun irhn, and a predi 
verb of it< own knows. Nevertheless, it, cannot Maud alone; 

dependent on innn and is called a d< ////.///// or suhordinafe. 

-. The rlau>es j n the example* in S all sub- 


term rnmpl' 'plies to in which a daiix' 


is the subject, the object, the predicate noun, or has .some 
other construction besides that of a modifier. 


(a) Subordinate clause as subject: That he should suffer thus 

seemed unjust. 

(b) Subordinate clause as object: Columbus proved that the 
world is round. 

(c) Subordinate clause as predicate noun: That is exactly what 

he did. 

(d) Subordinate clause governed by a preposition: Give one to 

whoever wants it. 

(c) A compound sentence is one in which two or more com- 
plete assertions of equal grammatical rank are combined, 
very often by the use of some such word as and or but. The 
clauses of such a sentence are said to be independent or co- 

EXAMPLE: After the destruction of the Lusitania, indignation ran 
high in America, and the war seemed very near. 

Sometimes one or more of the members (clauses) of a com- 
pound sentence are complex. 

EXAMPLE: When I found he was gone I started after him, and here 
I am. 

Here, plainly, we have two distinct and complete assertions, 
I started after him and here I am; and tha first assertion contains 
a subordinate clause telling when the act took place. Such 
sentences should, of course, be recognized as primarily com- 
pound; but their twofold nature may be indicated by qualifying 
the term and calling them complex-compound. 

10. Common Errors in Sentence Making. The most 
common errors in sentence structure made by students are of 
two kinds. 

(a) They run together two or more distinct and uncon- 
nected statements. 

EXAMPLE: My brother came home last night he works in Aurora. 
This group of words is clearly two sentences; hence a period 
should follow night, and he should be capitalized. Or a com- 


plex sentence such as, "My brother, who works in Aurora, 
came home last night," should be made. A failure to separate 
distinct statements is an elementary and illiterate blunder. 

EXAMPLE : We came home that evening about half past nine at the 
back of our yard we had a chicken coop running along the rear of the 
coop is an alloy a prime place for thieves that night I heard a sound in the 
coop and I took my pistol and ran out there in the dim light I saw a large 
cat pulling at my revolver, etc. 

Often students seem to think that the insertion of a comma 
here and there will correct the obvious absurdity of such a 
jumble as the foregoing; but the fact is that, unless thought 
relations exist and grammatical connections are expressed, the 
commas are by no means sufficient. A period or a semicolon 
should be put at the end of each complete statement; or else 
some grammatical connection between the statements should 
be expressed. Compare the following sentences: 

(Incorrect) (Correct) 

It was a fine day, we decided to (1) It was a fine day. We decided 
go skating. to go skating. 

(2) It was a fine day; we decided to 

go skating. * 

(3) It was such a fine day that we 

decided to go skating. 

In the third example, observe the way in which relations 
have been expressed between the assertions. In the vast 
majority of cases it is best to follow some such method of cor- 
rect inn, rather than to have a series of very short statements 
without connecting words. 

This childish habit of running together unconnected com- 
plete assertions has been variously called the sentence error, the 

'no, blunder, the baby blunder, etc. There is no worse error, 
and unfortunately none that is more common. 

Pupils often wrongly set off as complete sentences, 
groups of words thai do not make a complete assertion. Some- 
times the group lacks both subject and predicate. 

Cliri-tnias Day with MIOW on tin- ground and holly 

wrc-atlis in the window and a n< w *lod from Santa Glaus. 

>8e Section 07. 


Often a subject is lacking. 

EXAMPLE: Received your letter and in reply would say .... 

This crude error is especially common in hasty letters. Some- 
timos it is due to mere laziness, sometimes to the notion that 
the first-person pronoun / should be suppressed for the sake 
of modesty. While it is desirable to avoid excessive use of /, 
grammatical completeness of sentences is more important. 

Sometimes the predicate (or part of it) is lacking. This 
error is particularly common in cases in which the writer thinks 
of something related to a previous statement, but sets it off 
by itself. 

EXAMPLE: Among my friends I have two favorites. One a doctor, 
the other a lawyer. 

The verb is must bo inserted after one, if two sentences are 
made of the example; but it would be proper to substitute 
a comma for the first period^, begin one with a small letter, 
and leave the sentence otherwise unchanged. 

Sometimes a subordinate clause is punctuated as if it were 
a complete sentence. Such a clause, of course, has a subject 
and a predicate, but it lacks the third requirement of a sentence 
completeness and independence. 

KXAMPI.E: That year we studied Sh.'iksprn-. Who soon became my 
favorite a uthor. 

The clause in italics plainly belongs with Shakspere and should 
be separated by a comma instead of a period, unless who is 
changed to he. In the latter case the assertion is complete. 


Criticize the following quotations from students' themes. 
Write them correctly. 

1. The first characteristic of an ideal woman to be considered is her 

amiable nature, and always more considerate of others than herself. 
(Make two sentences.) 

2. I arrived just in time to see John pulling off my overshoes I stepped 

into the parlor. 


3. The old house wliich from boyhood we had thought of as haunted and 

which we passed in tho shades of evening on tiptoe. 

4. I found my hat where I had left it. On the piano. 

5. In view of the fact that this record covered a period of general depres- 

sion in the mail order business. We consider this a very good 

6. He could not go back accordingly he set his teeth and faced about. 

7. On the south side of the porch where as a child I had played many 

happy hours and where once my uncle found me in a spasm one hot 

July day after I had misused a faithful stomach in the orchard. 
S. The water was free/ing my stomach unused to the shock began to 

cramp no more miserable minutes have I ever felt. 
9. Inanimate objects, glass for instance, in making the possessive you 

use the of phrase. 

10. The internal combustion engine used now on almost all automobiles 

and which has revolutionized travel through the aeroplane which 
was made possible by the invention of this engine and is now in use 
in every country. 

11. We should build a strong navy. w< need to protect the canal. 

12. You will find the journey pleasant it costs little too. 

13. After a while boys grow careless thus they drift into bad ways. 

14. Where the roots are longot und most deeply imbedded and entangled. 

ourse we had to work harder. 


ie of the following groups of words are nob even sen- 
tence- : some are more 1 ban sentences. Others are simple, com- 
plex, or compound sentences. Examine each group carefully. 

it a. subject and a. predicate? What are they? Is the 
group independent ; i. e.. does it "make sense"? Which groups 

iin more than one sentence'.' 

1. When 1 am raught out in the rain without an umbrella and the nearest 

hoiif-e is a mile av. 
J. I',. Bird's nest. Minis! N 

nits grow. How pi-nniits grow! 
4. Honor th- I.iu'M Brr. 

Noble MX hundred. T< 

~>. \\ hi- !: -law. Which is agminrt the bur? 

| in the long run. 
7. the doctor calls. 


8. Truth crushed to earth shall rise again; 

The eternal years of God are hers: 
But error, wounded, writhes with p;iin, 
And dies among her worshipers. Bryant 

9. Still sits the schoolhouse by the road, 

A ragged beggar sunning. Whittier 

10. A year has gone as the tortoise goes, 

Heavy and slow. Whittier 


Pick out the clauses in each of the following quotations. 

When :i passage seems difficult to comprehend, put in an under- 
stood word. 

1. Leaves have their time to fall, 

And flowers to wither at the north wind's breath, 
And stars to set but all 

Thou hast all seasons for thine own, O Death! Mrs. Hemans 

2. Teach me to feel another's woe, 

To hide the fault I 
That mercy I to others show, 

That mercy show to me. "The Universal Prayer," Pope 

3. Is there for honest poverty 

Wha hangs his head, and a' that? Burns 

4. Rich the treasure, 

Sweet the pleasure .... Dryden 

5. I would not enter on my list of friends, 

Though graced with polished manners and fine sense, 

Yet lacking sensibility, the man 

Who needlessly sets foot upon a worm. WiUiam Cowper 


Answer the following questions: 

1. What elements are necessary to a sentence? Is an object necessary? 

Are modifiers necessary? 

2. Must the subject be stated? When is a word "understood"? 

3. What is the greatest danger resulting from a failure to indicate the 

end of a sentence? (Study Sentence 2, Exercise 1.) 

4. In what sense may a clause be an adjective or an adverb? Illustrate. 

5. Is a simple sentence always short? Is a compound sentence always 

long? Illustrate. 

6. What is a complex-compound sentence? 


7. What is a predicate noun? A predicate adjective? 

8. Write sentences having subjects consisting of: 

(a) a noun (c) a phrase 

(b) a pronoun (d) a clause 

11. The Parts of Speech. The thousands of words in our 
language are divided, according to their use in sentences, into 
eight classes called the parts of speech. 

It is assumed that the pupil knows these classes and, in 
general, their definitions. It is necessary to give some atten- 
tion, however, to various important matters for the purpose 
of refreshing the student's memory as to the parts of speech. 
The material will be presented in the following order: Nouns, 
Verbs, Pronouns, Adjectives and Adverbs, Conjunctions and 
Prepositions. (The eighth part of speech, Interjections, need 
not be treated here because they do not occur very often and 
no difficulties are involved in their use.) 

It must be remembered that a given word may be used 
as different parts of speech in different places. Man is usually 
a noun. But in the sentence, "We must man the boats," it is 
a verb. Up is most often an adverb. But in the sentence, 
I am going up a hill," it is a preposition. Note also the 
following uses of up: 

1. As an adjective: He failed on the up grade. 

2. As a .verb: While the old Dutch clock in the chimney place 

Up with its hands before its face. 


3. As a noun! We have our ups and downs. 

Other words can similarly be used in various ways. The use 
in a Driven sentence always determines the part of speech. 


Tell what part of speech each of the italicized words in the 

1. The tn-<- 1)V t he shed shed its lr:iv-s curly. 

<>t so green as usual. IVrhnpa it will green up after 
a r 


M. He stayed for dinner, for it \v;is ;i long way home. 

4. For is a preposition. 

">. It will snow tomorrow. 

6. The bent thing to do is to buy only the hrxt. 

7. He prayeth best who loveth beat, Coleridge 

8. Wait a minute. I'll go with you. The wi:it is lonesome in this 

cheerless waiting room. 

9. Hold! The hold is full of water. 

10. Where should the where clause be? 

11. White and black alike resented the law. 

12. Down grade, soft dawn, first down, to down him, down a hill, going 

down. Down, please. (Why does the last word group begin with 
a capital and not the ot ! 

12. Inflection. Some of the parts of speech are inflected 
that is, changed (Jlcx means to hem!) at some point, usually 
the end, to serve special purpo>r>. These changes are used 
to show how words are related in the sentence, thereby making 
the thought clear. English has comparatively few inflectional 
changes, but those few arc very important. 


, >lf form An inflected form 

(house houses 

man men 

Fred Fred's 

Adjective long longer 

Verb run runs 

Adverb quickly more quickly 

Pronoun who whom 

Prepositions, conjunctions, and interjections are not 
inflected; i. e., each has one form only. 


1. How would you change the following words (or word 
group) if you want to speak of more than one of each? 

House, ho, it. key, sky, this, tluit, order of the day. 

2. How would you change (inflect) the following words to 
mean more of the quality each denotes? 

White, beautiful, ill, swiftly, certain. 


3. How would you inflect the following words to prepare 
them to take the place of the word John in the sentence, "Fred 
struck John"? 

I, they, she, who, we. 

4. How would you inflect the following words so that they 
might properly fill the blank in the sentence, "The soldier 

- every day"? 

Fly, come, run, fight, r 


1. Why is good English important to a business or professional man? 

2. Why is grammar important ? 

:>. What is a direct object? An indirect object? 
4. What is a substantive? Use a phrase as a substantive. A clause. 
."). Illustrate: (a) a compound subject; (b) a compound predicate; 
ompound object; (d) a compound modifier. 

6. Give examples of: (a) a simple sentence; (b) a compound sentence; 
omplex sentence; (d) a complex-compound sentence. 

7. What are the most common errors in sentence making? 

s. illustrate the way in which a word may be used as different 
of speech. 



13. Nouns as Names. Every high-school pupil knows that 
"nouns are names," but he must not allow himself to think of 
them as names of persons or things only. Every sort of name 
is ordinarily a noun. Note, for instance, that the names of 
abstract ideas (often called abstract nouns) are nouns. 

EXAMPLES: love, fear, hope, silence, misfortune, loss, heat. 

Verb forms ending in ing often become names of actions and 
then are nouns. 

EXAMPLES: (1) Running is good exercise. 

(2) Most people enjoy singing. 

(3) All his being was filled with joy. 

14. Inflection of Nouns; Person and Gender. Nouns are 
inflected for number, and to a limited extent for case and gend< r. 
Once there was some inflection of nouns for person, but now 
person and gender may be passed with very brief consideration. 

Person. Except in cases of direct address (secpnd person; 
as, John, you are mistaken), and cases in which nouns are in 
apposition with pronouns of the first or second person (I, John, 
tell you this; you, William, must go) all nouns represent 
"person or thing spoken of," and are therefore third person. 
Moreover, even in these rare first-person or second-person uses, 
the form remains unchanged; hence, with nouns, it is need- 
less to consider inflection for person. 

Gender. While there are a good many nouns with the 
feminine ending ess (heiress, lioness, etc.), and some with other 
feminine endings borrowed from various languages (executrix, 
alumna, heroine, etc.), in general one who knows the meaning 
of a noun knows which sex it indicates, or whether it indicates 
sex at all. In other words, gender is usually only a matter of 



vocabulary; hence the inflection of nouns for gender needs no 
special attention. 

15. Number of Nouns. Nearly all nouns have different 
forms to indicate whether one or more than one is meant. 
A few exceptions having the same form for both singular and 
plural are: 

deer sheep fish 1 trout species 1 

cannon 1 swine (usually plural) bass Japanese 

Tliis list is not intended to be complete. The names of most 
kinds of game or fish may be the same in the plural as in the 


16. The Common Method of Making English Plurals. As 
every one knows, the overwhelming majority of English nouns 
form their plurals by adding s to the singular. Sometimes 
slight modifications are necessary along with the addition of 
5, but those seeming irregularities are easily accounted for. 

Thus there are cases in which s alone does not readily 
combine with the last sound of the singular noun. 

KXAMPLES: church gas tax 

cannot add the sound of s to such words without making 
an additional syllabic, naturally spelled es. Accordingly we 
make the rule that nuim> ending in ch (soft), sh, s, x, and z add 
form their plurals. 

(b) Nouns ending in y preceded by a consonant change the 
and add S. 

< fly flies 

When a vowel precedes the final t/, however, the plural is 
regular, simply adding s. 

Ex.\MiM.i:>: monkey monkeys donkey donkeys 

A number of nouns ending in/or/c form their plurals by 
i^ing the / (Or fc) to v and adding es (thief thieves)', but 

riey; fi*hti in a correct form when varieties of fish are meant; 
is allowable. 


many nouns ending in / are regular, simply adding s (reef 
reefs}. The student must learn the words that are irregular 
and assume that other nouns ending in/ are regular. Note the 
following list of nouns that end in ves in the plural: 

beef calf elf knife leaf 

life wolf loaf self sheaf 

thief wharf wife shelf half 

(d) A number of nouns ending iu o (preceded by a con- 
sonant) add es instead of .s. Here also one must learn the 
words that are irregular and assume that the others add only s. 
Note the following list of common words that add es: 1 

buffalo cargo domino 9 echo embargo 

hero li(l)o mosquito motto mulatto 

Negro potato tomato tornado volcano 

17. Some Special English Plurals. A few Knujlish words 
present special survivals of old plural forms not ending in s or es. 
In ox and child (and rarely in a few other words) an old plural 

ending t-ti is used own, chiltlrcn. Brother has the regular 
plural brothers and also the form bn-thn-n. In the following 
the vowel of the root is changed : 

man men woman women tooth teeth 

goose geese foot feet louse 1 lice 

mouse mice 

These words are all in such common use that errors seldom 

Compound nouns form their plurals in various ways; some- 
times by making the first part plural (sona-in-lfiw), sometimes 
by making the last part plural (felloic-meti }, sometime- 
making both parts plural (men-servants). 

18. Foreign Plurals. The case of foreign plurals involves 
more difficulty. The English language as it exists today i a 
composite of elements from many languages. Its basis from 

J Moat words to which either es or * may be added for the plural e. g., calico are 
omitted from the list. 

'There is such a word as dominos. How doe* it differ in meaning from dominoett 



which wo get the prevailing plural ending s (es) is the lan- 
guage of the Anglo-Saxon invaders of Britain of about the 
fifth century A. D. But a great number of words from various 
languages more from Latin than any other have been 
adopted whenever they have been needed. Many of the nouns 
from these various sources have taken English plurals, but 
many have kept their foreign plurals. Some have both foreign 
and English plurals. These foreign plurals irregular from our 
English point of view, though the student of Latin, for example, 
may find them regular must usually be learned, just as one 
learns a new word. The list in Exercise 7 contains a number 
of the most important of these words of foreign origin, together 
with some examples of the classes discussed in Sections 15, 16, 
and 17. This list is very important; each student should learn 
the proper forms of every word in it now. Copy the plural 
forms in a column 1 beside the singulars; next cover the singulars 
a-ntl write the singular forms from the plurals. Know them all 
before you pass the page. Use the dictionary or a grammar 
as much a< may be necessary. 


Give the plurals of these words: 

alumna (1) 



automaton (8) 

alumnus (1) 


child (0) 


funjuis (2) 



hippopo tiin uis (9) 








synthesis (3j 



focus (2) 



^enus (10) 






M. (?>) 








amanuensis (7) 


1. \\hat is tin- differ. 

-.our pronunciation. 
M ynii find its opposite in tli< 

1 Is this pronounced "> 


4. What is the possessive? 

5. Is this French for Mr. or is it the letter M? How do you know? 

6. How do you pronounce the plural? 

7. What does this word mean? Is it related to manual training? 

8. Related to automobile? 

9. Look it up in the dictionary. 
10. Is Edison a "genus"? 

19. Singulars That Look Like Plurals. Errors sometimes 
occur in the use of words that look like plurals' because they 
end in s, but which are really singular. The most important 
of these words are : 

(a) Some names of sciences mathematics, physics, ethics, politics, 

economics, etc. 

(b) Some n;unc.s of diseases measles, mumps, shingles, etc. 

(c) A miscellaneous group of words news, series, United States, gallows. 

Note that ways does not belong to this group. "A little 
ways" is a gross blunder; the proper singular form is way. 

20. Words Plural Chiefly Because of Form. The following 
words are usually 1 rented as plural: 

oats vitals proceeds assets riches ashes 

shears trousers pincers tongs athletics scissors 

Some of these words are occasionally singular, however ; e. g., 


For general review of the principles of forming plurals, 
answer the following questions: 

1. A number of nouns relating to music end in o. How do these form 

their plurals? Give examples. 

2. How do we form the plurals of most foreign words ending in o? Give 


3. What is the plural ending of most nouns ending with sis in the singular? 
Give examples. 

4. \Vhat is the plural ending of most nouns ending in us in the singular? 

Give examples. 

5. In what different ways do we form the plurals of compound words? 

Give examples. 


6. In what different ways do we form the plurals of words ending in/ or/e? 

Give examples. 

7. Why are the plurals of sky and key formed differently? State the rule 

for plurals of nouns ending in y. 

21. Case of Nouns. English nouns are not inflected for case 
except to indicate possession. The singular noun boy, for 
instance, retains the same form whether it is subject, or object, 
or predicate noun, or is governed by a preposition. 

EXAMPLES: (1) The boy is here (subject). 

(2) He hit the boy (object). 

(3) John is the boy I mean (predicate noun). 

(4) He threw a stone at the boy (with preposition). 

Only to show possession is the form changed boy's. This is 
the genitive (or possessive) case. 1 

22. Genitive (Possessive) Forms of Nouns. Singular nouns 
are regularly changed to show possession just as boy is changed 
by the addition of an apostrophe and s ('). 

EXAMPLES: child child's fox fox's 

father father's mouse mouse's 

The plural commonly ends in s already, so that the addition 
of an apostrophe and another s would usually be awkward and 
almost unpronounceable. We should not care to say fathers' s 
or mothers' s. If the plural ends in s, then, we simply add an 
apostrophe to indicate possession. 

AMPLES: Singular Plural 

brother's brothers' 

fox's foxes' 

But if the plural does not end in s, the possessive is formed as 
fr the singular, by the addition of an apostrophe and. 
AMPLES: Singular Plural 

child's children's 

mouse's mice's 

the sake of uniforn n atnitirr (Ion* in urn- in Latin and other language*) 

hM recently been adopted l> htture, ap- 

pointed by the National Education AffJMitttfOB, th<- Modem language Association. f 
a. and th<- Because the term po*e**it is better 

n. however, it will be used freely in thin b. 


Nouns which in the singular end in s form their possessive* 
in two ways. 

(a) If they are not very long, it is usually considered pref- 
erable to have them follow the regular rule for singulars, adding 
an apostrophe and s. 

EXAMPLES: Ordinary form Possessive 

Burns Burns's 

Jones Jones's 

Dickens Dickens's 

(b) But they may, especially if long, add only an apostro- 
phe. Thus Dickens' is an allowable form, and, since it would 
be very awkward to add an apostrophe and s to Deiuoxtln 
the possessive is preferably Demosthenes'. 

It is a common but. gns error to place the apostrophe 
before the s that belongs to the simple form of the name. 


1. Bum's books are politics in poetic form. 

2. I like Dicken's David Coppcrfield. 

3. It was Wilkin's first attempt. 

Remember that Burn and Dickcu and Wilkin are not the names 
meant here; the s belongs to the name in each case. Cultivate 
the habit of writing the full name (Burns, Dickens, Wilkins, 
Hopkins, Jones, Williams whatever it may be) and then 
adding the proper sign of possession. 

Compound nouns and mimes consisting of several words 
usually form their possessives regularly, by adding 's to the hist 
part of a compound noun or the last word in a group. Firm 
names are generally treated in the same way. 

EXAMPLES: father-in-law's The Union League Club's 

Brown and Smith's 

23. The Use of the Possessive. Names of inanimate 
objects should rarely be made possessive, for the simple reason 
that we do not readily think of inanimate objects as possessing 


owning anything. Instead of the possessive (genitive) form 
we use a phrase, generally with of, sometimes with another 
proposition. Note tho following oxamples: 


The hall's cover The cover of the bull 

A word's pronunciation The pronunciation of a word 

Some exceptions to this rule occur, chiefly in idiomatic 1 
expressions like a day's work, last year's styles, etc. Likewise 
the possessive forms of month, week, fortnight, hour, minute, or 
any other noun designating time may be used. In these ca>* -, 
a- well as in some others not involving time (the heart's desire, 
the water's edge, at his wit's end, etc.), the possessive (genitive) 
form indicates a connection between the nouns, rather than 
actual possession; so that the construction is technically called 
the genitive of connection. Care must be taken to avoid this 
construction unless you are sure of the idiom. 1 


(a) Write the possessive forms, or equivalents, for the fol- 
lowing words: 

hoy baby chiljd National Education Association 

sky babies Jones Clark & Meyer 

children father-in-law- John, the tailor 

(b) Answer the following questions: 

1. How do wo form the possessive of singular nouns? 
J. How do we form the \ of plural noir 

o. How do we form the possessive of compound nouns'.' 
1. Ho\v do \\e form the of firm names? Of names consisting 

of thn-r or more \\ 

the following rule correct: "Always form the possessive of plural 
nouns by uddinir ; :ophe only." How about chililrrn'af 

i form the po.-f idiom, nee the Glow.-i- :i! TITIIM ill tin- Appi-mlix. 

o between the plural and the poMOMive of comp Malt* 

a rule covering this difference. 



Use in sentences the possessive forms, or equivalents, of the 
following : 

Chicago Chicago Commercial Club misses book 

Hawkins King of Spain princesses they 

aide-de-camp Wright & Curtis biplanes year 

geese Kelly and Miller duchess life 


1. Is a noun inflected (changed) for number? For case? For person? 
For gender? 

2. Why do we have plurals of so many varieties? 

3. Why, in general, do plural nouns add only the apostrophe to show 

4. How does the plural of man-of-war differ from the posse- 

">. Why do nouns representing inanimate things rarely have posses- 
sive forms'.' 


First person 
Second person 
Third person 

(I) run 
(you) run 
(he) runs 2 

(we) run 
(you) run 
(they) run 

First person 
Second person 
Third person 

(I) ran 
(you) ran 
(he) ran 

(we) ran 
(you) ran 
(they) ran 

First person 
Second person 
Third person 

(I) shall run 
(you) will run 
(he) will run 

(we) shall run 
(you) will run 
(thoy) will run 

! to tempo (music) and temporary, tho root in all meaning 
'Italic borauM of points developed in Bert: 



(b) When we wish to say that an act was completed a1 
some time in the past, we use the past perfect tense. 

EXAMPLE : He had left when the police arrived. 

Note that arrived is simple past tense, and that had left expn 
an action that took place was completed before that moment 
in the past when the police arrived; i. e., the past of the p;i 
expressed by the past perfect. 

(c) Sometimes we look forward to a time when something 
is to be completed; that is, we look forward to a time when we 
shall be looking back at a completed act. The need of expi 
ing this idea led to our having a future perfect tense. 

EXAMPLE: I shall have finished my first chart by tomorrow. 

27. Have and the Perfect Tenses. Note that the examples 
of perfect tenses all begin with some form of the verb have, 
which in the main conforms with the conjugation of run given 
in Section 25. l Thus the present tense of have is as follows: 

Singular Plural 

First person (I) have (we) have 

Second person (you) have (you) have 

Third person (he) has- (they) have 

Accordingly the present perfect tense of run is as follows: 

Singular Plural 

First person (I) have run (we) have run 

Second person (you) have run (you) have run 

Third person (he) has* run (they) have run 

Since the past and the future of have are regular (/ had, I shall 
have, etc.), the forms of the past perfect and the future perfect 
need not be given in detail. 

28. The Verb Be. The foregoing conjugation applies to 
most verbs, but not to the most important verb in the language 
the verb expressing existence, be. It has eight simple forms: 
be, am, is, are, was, were, being, been. 

1 With a few verbs we have another form of the perfect tense, using be instead of havi. 

EXAMPLE: He is gone (generally equivalent to he has gone). 

2 Italic because of points developed in Sections 31-33. 



The conjugation of be for the simple tenses is as follows: 


First person 
Second person 

Third person 
First person 
PAST TEN Second person 

( Third person 
f First person 


?/r.s/ Can you find a verb bust in the dictionary?
fiitrh Watch your pronunciation. Has a ball team a ketchcrf
come Watch the past, and don’t use the past tense with have.
en rxc How about cussf e none; yet how often do
we hear, / had went!

This error requires much self-checking. There is a story
-mall boy who, as a. punishment for having written / have
in nt. was told by his teacher to remain after school and write
/ fan* yone fifty times. AVhen the teacher returned to her
room after ten minutes’ absence, she found the phrase written
the required fifty times, followed by the note:


I have wrote 1 have ^mu- fifty times and 1 li:tvc went home.


36. The “I seen” Error. The counterpart of the “I had

Tor (which CODsista in the use of the second principal
part where the third is required) occurs when the third
of the principal parts is \ix-d by it-elf a- the whole verb (in-lead


of with some form of have). The use of / seen, I done, I drunk,
I begun, etc., is one of the crudest errors in English speech.
Crude as such errors are, very many people have, at some
time in life, to fight them. The law of labor holds good in
English as in other things of worth one must work for what
he gets. We speak too rapidly and far too carelessly. A bad
habit is hard to break. It can be replaced by a good habit only
by fighting back over lost ground. Do you ever use any of the
second principal parts with have, or any of the third principal

parts with I f


Insert the correct verb forms in the following sentences:

1. (lose) He did not the ring.

2. (flee) The robber up the alley.

3. (dive) The boy off the pier. (Is of needed too?)

4. (pay) The men were each week.

5. (lie) I was so tired yesterday, I just down and fell asleep.

6. (blow) The wind very hard all night.

7. (see do) I my duty and I it.

8. (swim) They had across the river above the dam.

9. (begin) I had already the work.

10. (bid) I my old friend good-bye.

11. (hang) The horst-thief was promptly.

12. (flow) The river by the old city for two centuries.

13. (burst) The tank suddenly.

14. (drink) I have his health for the last time.

15. (show) I have him the errors.

16. (bid) I two hundred dollars, but it was not enough.

17. (beat) The driver his horses shamefully.

18. (steal) The burglars the automobile.

19. (lay) He his right hand on my shoulder.

20. (throw) The catcher quickly him out at first.

21. (grow) He has never up.

22. (come) I in suddenly.

23. (drag) They the cannon up the hill. (How many did they

drag? Can you tell?)

24. (curse) The driver volubly.

25. (sow) The grain was early.

26. (lose loose) He knew he would the horse the minute it


27. (swing) The woodman his ax.


37. Voice. Another important variation in verb forms is
used to indicate whether the verb represents its subject as
acting or acted upon.

A verb is said to be in the active voice when its subject is
the doer of the action.

EXAMPLE : John struck James.

The forms given in Section 25 are all active.

A verb is said to be in the passive voice when its subject
is the receiver of the action; in other words, the subject is
acted upon instead of acting is passive.

EXAMPLE : James was struck by John.

The passive verb has a special conjugation, consisting of
the forms of the verb be and the past participle the third of
the principal parts. In the example just given we have the
past passive, consisting of the past tense of be plus the past
participle of strike struck. From this hint the full passive
conjugation can easily be worked out.

There are two ways of recognizing a passive. The first is
based on form. Some form of the verb be and the past parti-
ciple, or last principal part, are usually sufficient to mark a
passive. The second method has to do with the meaning. If
the subject names the receiver of the action expressed in the
verb, the verb is passive. Recollection of this point will pre-
vent confusion between the passive and the progressive forms
(Section 29). Thus / am striking is progressive (and active),
for / am acting; but / am struck is passive, for / am acted upon.
The forms also help here, since striking is the present participle;
struck, the past participle. It is the past participle that is used
in milking passives.

38. Changing from Active to Passive. On examining closely
the examples in the preceding section, you will notice that in
the first sentence in which the active is used, James, the name
of the receiver of the action expressed by the verb struct

lirect object. But when the verb is made passive, so that


the sentence reads, “James was struck by John,” James, the
name of the receiver of the action, becomes the subject; and
John, the name of the doer of the action, which was the subject
of the active verb, becomes the principal word of a phrase
telling by whom the action was performed. In other words,
the subject of the passive verb is the same word that was the
object of the corresponding active verb, for the reason that
both the subject of a passive verb and the object of an active
verb are receivers of the action.

In cases in which there are two objects of an active verb a
direct and an indirect object, for example the change to the
1 missive may be made in two ways.

\MPLK: John K:I\ .I:um-s a book.

In this case book is the direct object, James the indirect object.
( ‘hanging the verb to pa>-iv-. we may write cither, “James was
given a book by John,” or. *’A book was given James by John.”
That is, either the direct or the indirect object may become the
subject. In the fir>t case, in which the indirect object becomes
the subject, the direct object is retained after the passive verb
and is called a retained object. In the second case, in which the
direct object becomes the subject, the indirect object remains
unchanged in construction and meaning, naming the person
to whom the book was given.

It should be noted that the sentences in this section con-
i Mining passive verbs are rather indirect and awkward are
longer and less forceful than the example with an active verb.
This is generally true in Knglish. While there are, of course,
many cases in which a passive verb expresses the meaning more
exactly than an active verb, it is wise to challenge each passive;
to ask yourself whether the corresponding active form would
not be less vague, more direct, more forcible.

39. Verb Signs. Now that we have discussed the main
elements of inflection in verbs, it is possible to sum up the
whole matter in such a way that the student can readily
recognize and construct the most important forms of any


English verb. Learn the following signs of verb formation,
ar*/m// have been driven is. By reference to the verb
signs you note:

xhall [\i’

have perfect.

been (be) with past participle passive.

Annwer: the fut D



1. Write the forms used with 7 for the verb drive, active
and passive, 1 for the three simple tenses.

2. Do the same for the three perfect tenses.

3. Write the emphatic forms for drive. (Remember that
these occur only in the present and past active.)

4. Write five participle forms for drive. (Include the past
participle, which does not end in ing.)


Write the following forms of strike, by the aid of the verb
signs :

1. Past perfect active, first person singular.

2. Past perfect pa

3. Future perfe : trd penon nngular.

4. Present active infinit iv.

5. Present p:is>i\e inlinr
0. Perfect pa.-sive parti’.

7. Present passive i’ -rticipl^.

8. Present pci -ilur.
0. Present active participle.

10. Future active, third p< idar. 11. Futun ad j>erson.

12. Present active infinir


(a) Name the following verb forms. Use the m
plained in Section 40.

I shall have struck u-k

v-e been struck I lutve lieen striking

to strike I was struck

to he struck w., nick

had struck ha-. ruck

I am striking 11 have heen struck

I was striking do strike

I shall be striking am struck

having struck I am being struck

having been struck I did strike

striking I had been striking

1 In forming a present passive, use the present of the verb be; in forming a past passive,
use the past of the verb be, etc. See Sec. 28.

1 Called phrasal past participle by the Committee on Grammatical Nomenclature.


(b) Write the names of the verb forms in (a). Close the
book and write the forms from the names. Compare with the

Practice using the verb signs until you are thoroughly
familiar with English verb forms.

41. Transitive and Intransitive Verbs. Thus far in the dis-
cussion of verbs we have been concerned with matters of
inflectional form. There are certain classifications as to mean-
ing, however, that require consideration.

Some verbs, by their meaning, require an object.

EXAMPLE : John struck James.

As the verb is used here, the meaning is incomplete unless we
are told whom John struck. Such a verb is called transitive.
Trans means across; the action is carried across from John to

Other verbs are complete without an object, a receiver of
the action, and are said to be intransitive.

EXAMPLES: (1) Birds fly.

(2) The sun rises earlier in summer.

Many verbs may be either transitive or intransitive, accord-
ing to some variation in meaning. Thus fly, intransitive in the
example just given, may be transitive.

EXAMPLE: Boys fly kites.

Since only transitive verbs imply a receiver of the action, a
on or thing acted upon, only transitive verbs can be used
in the passive voice. Therefore whenever you see a passive
construction you will know that the verb is transitive.

A number of common errors in the use of verbs will dis-
appear if one understands, and is careful to observe, the dis-
tinction bet \veen transitive and intransitive. The following
u ill deal with a few of the most troublesome of tb

42. Sit and Set. ,S’rt is ordinarily intransitive cannot
have a direct object and indicates that some person or tiling

a certain position. Set is transitive in its most common


uses and means to put or place some person or thing (its
object). The principal parts of these verbs are:

Present Past Past Participle

Sit (intransitive) sit sat sat

t (transitive) set set set

Some people have the idea that things with life sit, and that
inanimate objects set; but there is no such distinction. The
best test is usually the transitive test. Where a passive form
is needed, only the transitive verb can be used. Why? Because
only transitive verbs have passive voice.

There are a number of idiomatic uses of set to which the
distinction just emphasized does not apply.

EXAMPLES: The sun sets at seven o’clock.
We set out on a cold day.
I set about my task at once.

These are cases in which set does not have its most common
meaning to place or put and in which confusion with sit
seldom occurs.


Fill the blanks below with the proper forms of sit and set:

1. the inkstand on the window-sill, and let it there.

‘J. The farmer a trap for the fox, but caught instead his


3. The practice of hens has given over to the incubator.

1. The hen was in the mow.

5. He had his heart on a new watch, and he up waiting

for his father.

6. The man something by the side of the road. From where

I I could not see him clearly.

7. I used to like to his slippers by the chair where he usually

8. The trees were out.

9. The edges were in about two inches.

10. They out for London at six o’clock.

11. The baby was in his high chair each morning and ho patiently

till noon.

12. I have the alarm for four o’clock.


13. He was in the ing room ing down the day’s expenses.

14. down for a minute until I the table.

15 The sun far too soon that day.

43. Lie and Lay. Lie, like sit, is intransitive, and likewise
means that some person or thing assumes or maintains a certain
position. 1 La?/, like set, is transitive in its most common uses,
and means to put or place. Difficulties occur here partly
because the past tense of lie is spelled like the present tenso of
lay, and partly because many people are unable to distinguish
between laid and lain. The principal parts must therefore be
very carefully learned and fixed in the mind by exercises in
the use of the correct forms.

Prest nt Pant Past Participle

Lie (intransitive) lie lay lain

Lay (transitive) lay laid 2 laid 2


Fill the blanks below with the proper forms of lay or lie:

1. I had the keys away and forgotten them.

2. The eggs were that day.

3. The cable at the bottom of the ocean.

4. I’nder the wide and starry sky,

Dig the grave and let me

Glad did I live and gladly die,

And I me down with a will. Stevenson

.”. But little he’ll reck, if they let him ‘sleep on

In a grave where a Briton has him. Wolfe

Xow I me down to sleep.

7. I down a few minutes yesterday. (Say this sentence live

[ came upon us suddenly and to hide we hurriedly down in

the tall grass.
9. ” down,” said Murphy. I down instantly.

10. How long have the papers in that drawer”

11. li iething away for a rainy day,

in mud up to one’s belt is not renidueive to ^ood righting.

in bed and hear the rain upon the roof.

1 1. The UP Mt ship- were ing in port while the sailor- Wtft inn


i leaning to tHl :m : ‘lifTcrr-iit won I. n



44. Rise and Raise. The verb rise, meaning to move
upward, is intransitive; raise, meaning to cause to move
upward, to lift, is transitive. The principal parts are:

Present Past Past Participle

Rise (intransitive) rise rose 1 risen

Raise (transitive) raise raised raised

The use of raise as a noun (He got a raise in pay) is careless
English; “He got (or received) an increase” is better.


Fill the blanks below with the proper forms of raise or rise:

1. They the old boat.

2. The deacon himself on his elbow and spoke.

3. The water had already to the top of the boat.

4. The men suddenly from the grass.

5. Truth crushed to earth will again. Bryant

6. The lawyer to state that they had the money.

7. Corn is in Illinois.

45. Shall and Will. In the partial conjugations in
Sections 25 and 28, the regular forms of the simple future tense
are given / shall run, you will run, he will run; I shall be, you
will be, he will be, etc. Because humanity is not inclined to
discriminate in seemingly small matters, there is a tendency
to drop the distinction between shall and will, and a great
many people have lost all feeling of a difference. Errors occur
mainly in the first person. Since will is the commoner form
for the simple future, being used with both second and third
persons, people use it also with / and we, in spite of the fact
that / will or we will literally means, / intend or am determined;
we intend or are determined. That is, will with the first person
has a much stronger meaning than simple future. It is dan-
gerous, therefore, to act on the assumption that it makes no
difference which form you use. The use of will for shall is
likely to make a bad impression.

1 Do you know three other words pronounced exactly like this verb form?


(a) Shall and will in independent statements.

For simple futurity: For volition (desire), promise,

or determination:

(I, we) shall (I, we) will

(you) will (you) shall*

(he, they, and all nouns) will (he, they, and all nouns) shall*

The starred forms are less common than the others. They
show not only determination, but a degree of unpleasant
insistence due, it might be, to anger. They would be used, for
instance, by a father whose son has refused to do as he had
been told. The father would say in a determined way, “He
shall go.” It would not be polite for a superior, in giving
orders, to use the form “you shall,” and it would doubtless
cause resentment. He would use “you will,” meaning, of
course, to convey an order, but in a polite manner. Military
orders read : “Captain Reynolds will march at daybreak,” etc.
If, however, Captain Reynolds should refuse, his superior could
insist by the less polite, but more forceful, “Captain Reynolds
shall,” etc.

(b) Shall and will in questions.

In the first person ordinarily use shall. 1 Will with the first
person means want to. It would be nonsense for the speaker
to ask of a second person, “Do I want to go?” But if one were
asked, “Will you go with me?” one might answer, “Will I?
I should say so!”

In the second and third persons use the word expected in the
reply. That is, if the speaker wants a promise from another,

xpects the words “I will.” His question should be, accord-
ingly, “Will you?” If the speaker wishes only to know about
future probability, he will expect the reply, “I shall,” and if
he is careful he will use “shall you” in the question.

in second person:
i -nil you he in Boston this month?
A. No, I think I Khali not go so far east, or,

Yes, I shall ho flu-re next week. (The reply “Iocs not contain
a promise, and now

would be allowable in putting a question to vote. Why?


Q. Witt you do me a favor?

A. Of course I will. (In this case a promise was asked and piven.)
KXAMPLES in third person :

Q. Will he come next week?

A. I think he will (simple future).

Q. Shall he mow the lawn today? (A request for directions.)

A. He shall. 1 (I wish it volition.)

(c) Shall and mil in subordinate clauses.

Difficulties in most subordinate clauses will be solved if a
form is used corresponding to that required on a change of the
subordinate to a principal clause.


(1) Mr. Smith says he shall be down in a few minutes. 2 (Mr.

Smith’s direct statement of the matter was, “I shall be
down in u few minutes.”)

(2) Mr. Roberts says lie //// do your errand. (Mr. Roberts’ state-

ment was a promise, ”I will,” etc.)

(3) He thinks you will be elected. (He expressed his thought

as simple future, “You will probably be elected.”)

(4) He fears he shall be defeated. 3 (He expressed his fear as

simple future, “I fear I shall be defeated.”)

(5) He is resolved that he inll not go. (He expressed deter-

mination, “I will not go.”)

46. Should and Would. Should is in origin the past tense
of shatt, would the past tense of will; and in general the uses of
the words correspond to these facts. The same errors occur
as with shall and will. Thus would is used altogether too much
with the first person when it is not meant to imply intention
or determination. For instance, “I wouldn’t do it if I were
you” is not a careful statement. Will is too strong a word for
the place; hence would is also too strong. “I shouldn’t do it
if I were you” is better unless the speaker feels very strongly
on the subject.

1 A courteous reply would avoid the actual use of shall here, though it might
be meant. But in the questiop shall is necessary.

– In this sentence will would very commonly be used, and could be defended because
Mr. Smith may have expressed an intention.

3 In this case, perhaps because it immediately follows he, will would probably be used
by all hut the most careful speakers.


In subordinate clauses, especially in indirect discourse
(expressing another’s thought in your own words), use should
if the form in the direct statement is shall; would if the form in
the direct statement is will. Thus the examples near the end
of the preceding section will read as follows if changed to past

1. Mr. Smith said he should be down in a few minutes.

2. Mr. Roberts said he would do your errand.

3. He thought you would be elected.

4. He feared he should be defeated.

5. He was resolved that he would not go.

Besides the uses of should and would as the past of shall
and will, there are also some special uses to be distinguished.

Thus should, even with the first person, may be equivalent
to ought to.

‘ 1) He should pay his debts.

(2) I should tell you but I won’t.

In speech this use of should is easily distinguished by emphasis
from the should that merely corresponds to shall. In writing
one has to judge by the context.

Would is also used to mean habitual or customary action.

\.MPLE: He would sit on a cold stone all day and fish.

Fill in the blanks below with shall or will, or should or

1. 1 .._.. ._ net my death of cold.

J. I ” is the motto of Chi–

you see your brother in Cleveland’.’

4. you give me some ad\

5, Hello, Mr. .Tami.M.n, you !,< Ini-v tonight? If not, you help at tin: church fair? . I be working at the office tonight, but I help you tomorrow evening. 7. \Ve on that I - mimed. ! river said he not go (should or would?). 50 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH do our duty in this case. my men go to work for you now? not have believed it. 12. She feared they be lost on the hillside. 13. He pay the entire bill, or I sue him. 14. - he be expelled from school? Certainly, he ; I cannot have such boys about. 15. He said he go for you. 16. By this time it was late and I had to run or I have been late at school. 17. By Heaven, he feel the force of my anger! 18. Tomorrow he feel sorry. Quote the following indirectly : 19. "I will go," said he. 20. "I shall be in Toledo Tuesday," she told Allen. 21. "Shall you be going, too?" asked Tom. 22. "They will go," said he. 47. Mood in Verbs. Thus far we have paid no attention to the mood of verbs the variations in form to indicate the manner of the action. The forms given in Sections 25-30 are all of the indicative mood, which is ordinarily used in making assertions and asking questions. An overwhelming majority of the verbs in everyday speech and writing are indicative. In direct and forcible commands the imperative mood is used; but as this occurs only in the second person present (both singular and plural), and as it has but one form in each voice, which in the active is identical with the first of the principal parts, no difficulties occur in relation to it. EXAMPLES: (1) Go to your places. (2) "Strike while the iron is hot." (3) Be 1 men if you can. Difficulties jn relation to mood center entirely around the subjunctive, which is used to express wish, condition, etc., in certain special ways explained in Sections 49 and 50. 48. Forms of the Subjunctive. While in theory there is a full subjunctive conjugation, it differs from the indicative in 1 Note that be is an exception to the general rule that the imperative is like the first person, singular, present indicative. VERBS 51 so few places that the simplest manner of treatment is merely to fix the attention on these differences, as follows: (a) In all verbs except be there is no difference between the indicative and the subjunctive in the active voice, except in the third person, singular, present, where the subjunctive drops the final s of the indicative form; 1 and in the third person, singular, present perfect, where the subjunctive is made with have instead of has. KXAMPLES for present tense: Indicative Subjunctive He loves If he love He has the strength If he have the strength (b) The verb be has a more varied subjunctive conjugation. Examine carefully the following forms of the simple tenses : Present tense Indicative Subjunctive Singular 1st I am if I be 2d you are if you be 3d he is if he be Plural 1 st we are if we be 2d you are if you be 3d they are if they be Note that the subjunctive form is be throughout in every case different from the indicative. The present progressive subjunctive and the present passive subjunctive of any transi- tive verb similarly have be throughout. EXAMPLES: If he be striking (progressive) If he be struck (passive) Past tense Indicative Subjunctive ilar 1st I was if I were 2d you were if you were IK- iras if he i/v/v I'lur.-il if wo were LM you if you were .'M they were if they were the cue of the verb haix, thr mibjunrtivn is Aaw where the indicative ia Ktu. 52 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH Note that the subjunctive form is were throughout, but that it varies from the indicative in only the first and the third person singular. The past progressive subjunctive and the past passive subjunctive similarly have were throughout. EXAMPLES: If I (he) were striking (progressive) If I (he) were struck (passive) To sum up the matter in a different way, the only pases in common use in which the subjunctive differs from the indicative are: (a) Present subjunctive of be be in all persons and both numbers, where the indicative'has am, is, are. This applies also to cases in which be is used as an auxiliary; i. e., in the progressive and passive conjugations. (b) Past subjunctive of be were in all persons and both numbers; different from the indicative only in the singular, first and third persons, where tin- indicative is tw.s. This apph I in which be (were) is an auxiliary. (c) Third person, singular, present subjunctive of all other verbs, with- out the s that marks the corresponding indicative form. In the case of have, this means that the subjunctive is hare where the indicative is h, 4, and 5 above, where the present indicative cannot pos-
sil>ly be substituted does not “make sense.”

I ‘>. The subjunctive is also used in various clauses beginning
with if, though, and similar conjunctions, and expressing con-
ilitinn, concession, etc.

(a) The present subjunctive is used to indicate uncertainty.

KXA.MPLKS: (1) If this be possible, I will do it.

(2) Though IK- .s/f/// me, yet will I trust him.

(3) I Dl /ess, he cannot be pardoned.

This i< more a literary than ,-i common use, yet occasions rise in which it is very desirable to introduce the shade of meaning -i l)ii ted by the subjunctive. When the if clause is not in- tended to indicate uncertainty, however, the indicative is used. : If stc.-ili- \vhy isn't food speculation punish- able us doubly crin 54 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH In the foregoing sentence stealing is regarded as unquestionably a crime, hence the indicative form. Yet stealing may not always be wrong. If a widow steals for her hungry babies, there may be some question as to the criminality of the act and we may properly say: If stealing for hungry babies be a crime, then mother love is criminal. In clauses of condition or concession without a conjunction (with if or though implied but not expressed), the need of the subjunctive is sometimes more obvious than when there is a conjunction. EXAMPLES: (1) Beit ever so humble, there's no place like home. (2) Be that as it may, I can't go with you. (b) The past subjunctive is used to indicate a condition contrary to fact. EXAMPLES: (1) If that were possible, we could succeed. (2) If John were here, I would scold him soundly. (3) He acts as if he were crazy. (4) Were I asked, I should be glad to go. The foregoing sentences imply that it is not possible, that John is not here, etc. This use of were in conditions contrary to fact is perhaps the most important use of the subjunctive in subordinate clauses. There are few more positive marks of the careless speaker or writer than the use of was with the first or third person singular in if clauses such as the following: (Bad) (Good) If I was ready, I'd go. If I were ready, I'd go. He acts like 1 he was angry. He acts as if he were angry. It must be remembered, however, that there is a perfectly correct use of the past indicative in if clauses, just as there is of the present indicative. EXAMPLES: (1) If he was ready, he was to go at tmce. (A matter of actual fact, not of condition contrary to fact.) (2) If I was at fault, why didn't you correct me? 1 Note here the additional error of using Jike as a conjunction, instead of at if. See Section 79. VERBS 55 The following poem by Edward Rowland Sill very neatly illustrates the differences of meaning between indicative and subjunctive: MOODS (From Hermione and Other Poems) Dawn has blossomed: the sun is nigh: Pearl and rose in the wimpled sky, Rose and pearl on a brightening blue: (She is true, and she is true!) The noonday lies all warm and still And calm, and over sleeping hill And wheat field falls a dreamy hue: (If she be true if she be true!) The patient evening comes, most sad and fair: Y< il( d :TO the stars: the dim and quiet air its of hidden myrrh and rue: (If she \veiv true if she were only true!) In the morning the poet is optimistic; he uses the indicative that ''she is true." At noon he doubts; hence the subjunctive, "if she be true." Evening finds him discouraged and c I that she is not true "if ?\\Q were only true." 61. Verb Phrases Instead of the Subjunctive. One re for the limit. ,he subjunctive in English is the fact that. in i'. phrase 1 with some auxiliary may be sub- -. e. The following table showing how - from the prece'liiiL OS may be changed will illusi- :,t fully: ives 1. ' May < iod say. '.. I insisting of two or. < Is a verb phrate. 56 VOCATIONAL KNCMSH 7. The general ordered that the fort be blown up. 8. Give him food lest he perish. 9. Though he slay me, yet will 1 trust him. 10. Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home. 11. If that ii-fi-c ])ossil)le. \ve could ucoeed. 12. \\'d and Harrlay w.-dk, ‘gainst time,

His style in youth or age is still the .-.uue. Byron

2. If I (was, were) you, I wouldn’t
:;. Hut who may know

Whether smile or frown (/, is) fleeter. Tenr< \. What good should follow this, if this (was, were) done'.' 5. Though I (am, be) a woman, have I no legal right-.' 6. Govern well thy appet it (>, lest sin (surprise, surprises) thee.

7. If thy hand (offend*, offend) thee, cut it off.

8. (Is, Be) it scroll or (is, be) it book,

Into it, knight, thou must not look. Scott

9. I wish I (was, were) prepared.

in. Now if this (be, is) true, we are in danger.

11. Now if this (was, were) true, he wouldn’t tell you.

(b) Justify the following uses:

12. The leader of the rush (at the signal of the platoon leader, if the latter

be not the leader of the rush) commands: Follow me.

Infantry Drill Regulations, T. N. .1.

13. Would that I were king.


(c) Either word may be used in sentence 14. What is the
difference in meaning?
14. Even if this (is, be) true, I shall trust him still.

52. Agreement of Subject and Predicate. It is a funda-
mental rule that a verb must agree with its subject in number.
This ought to be a very simple rule to observe, for (except in
the case of be) the singular verb is different from the plural
only in the third person singular of the present and the present
perfect tenses. Yet the fact is that few rules are so often
violated. To avoid such errors you should acquire the habit
of instantaneous mental analysis of an uttered sentence.
Attention to the following sources of difficulty is important:

(a) Words intervening between the subject and the verb are
sometimes allowed to cause confusion.

I \ AMPLES: (1) A range of mountains extend along the coast.
(2) Each of the girls have permission.

In the first example range is the subject; mountains is merely the
noun of a prepositional phrase modifying range; and since range
U -insular, the verb should be extends. In the second example
each (singular) is the subject and the verb should be has.

(b) Sometimes a plural predicate noun, nearer the verb than
titular subject, causes confusion. The student should

remember that the verb agrees with the subject, not with the
‘icatc noun.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

; tin- most, interesting sights One of the most interesting sights
in Texas arc the oil wells. in Texas is the oil wells.

In many cases the best way to avoid trouble is so to con-
struct the sentence that there is no disagreement in number
between the subject and a, predicate noun. Thus the example
uld be rather more logical if it read:

oil wrlls :ir<- among tin- ino-t inti-roting sights in Texas. The treatment < ,f collective nouns often puzzles the student. The verb with a collective noun may usually be either 58 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH singular or plural; singular if the persons or things named are thought of as a unit, plural if individuals of the group are meant. EXAMPLES: Our family is not very large. Our family are great lovers of sport. It is important to treat a collective noun consistently through- out a given sentence; if the verb is made singular, for example, words that refer to the subject of the verb must also be singular. (Inconsistent) (Correct) The committee has made their The committee has made its report, report. The committee have made their report. EXERCISE 21 Which of the following sentences are proper? Explain and correct all the errors you find. 1. Not one of the men was lost. 2. Each of the horses were curried every morning. 3. An infinity of beautiful white snowflakes carry us back to our boyhood. 4. The method of choosing electors is not considered representative. 5. A set of twenty volumes sell for $40. 6. Either of the boys write well enough. 7. Neither of them take lessons. 8. Seventy thousand miles of railroad were built in 1900. 9. And Lennox with a gallant band waits but thy coming. Scott 10. Have either of your friends arrived? 11. A new code of rules and regulations are being made. 12. The preacher as well as the congregation were frightened. 13. Mrs. Henderson with her three children were captured. 63. The Compound Subject. When there is a compound subject usage varies. (a) Two or more words joined by and to make a subject usually take a plural verb. EXAMPLE: Havoc and spoil and ruin are my gain. Milton If, however, the words are taken together as one idea, the singular verb is used. EXAMPLES: (1) My old schoolmate and chum is here. (2) Bread and butter is good. VERBS 59 (b) A subject consisting of two or more singular words joined by or or nor requires a singular verb. EXAMPLE : Neither John nor Mary has any time. But when the words differ in number, the verb generally agrees with the nearest part of the subject. EXAMPLES: Neither Fred nor the French boys have ever been in Chicago. Neither the French boys nor Fred has ever been in Chicago. (c) When the words of a compound subject are modified by each, 1 every, or no, the verb must be singular. EXAMPLES: (1) Each village and hamlet plays its part. (2) Every man, woman, and child has his opinion. (3) No man and no woman has been here. 64. Agreement in Person. A verb must agree with its sub- ject in person. There is a peculiar error common in speech throughout the United States. It is the "I says" error. I is of the first person (person speaking). Says is of the third p'Tson; it goes properly with he. In / says the subject and predicate do not agree in person. (Incorrect) (Correct) And I goes over to him and I And I went over to him and said, says, says I, etc. etc. What is wrong with the following sentence? The trouble >t only a matter of number; person is involved, also.

You was there, wasn’t you?

Are you sure your explanation is right? The error is exceed-
ingly common among careless people.

Don’t is an abbreviation of do not, and is in good use as
such. It must not be employed where do not is wrong.

(Incorrect) (Cor

‘! don’t mind critic-ism at all. (I) He dwsn’t mind rrit irism at all.

lon’f him- much (2) The tree doesn’t have much

chance in the ntv. dinner in the city.

1 Bach, every, ont, none, no, and any are usually xinnul:r. Sea Section 69.


Trouble in this matter is persistent and common. Catch
yourself every time you use don’t in the third person, singular,
present. It may take dozens of self-administered punishments
to break you of the habit, especially if you are so unfortunate
as to hear the error at home, but the habit must be broken.
65. The Split Infinitive. When one or more words are
placed between the to of an infinitive and the verb, the infinitive
is said to l>e split (or cleft). Usually such an arrangement is



(Awkward) (Better]

It pays to thoroughly do one’s Jt pays to do one’s work thor-

The correction just given may be applied to most split infini-
tives; the adverb may be put either before to or after the whole
infinitive phrase. Though split infinitives have occasionally
been used by good writers, in cases in which it seemed less
awkward to split the infinitive than to place the adverb outside
the infinitive phrase, and though for this reason the construction
has been defended by some 1 good grammarians, there can be no
question, as to the desirability of avoiding the split infinitive
when a simple rearrangement like that illustrated above is
po-sible. In the vast majority of cases it is perfectly easy, and
preferable, to avoid splitting the infinitive.


Which of the following sentences are proper? Correct all
the errors you find.

1. The tumult and the shouting dies.

‘2. It don’t, seem right that a few men should h:ive so groat ;t power.

3. The deer floe before the hounds.

4. They have placed the piano in a room where no one but their family

and the people upstairs hear it.

5. Don’t an industrious and honest m:in have a chance now?

6. Well! I didn’t know where you was.

7. Nor time nor tide affect him now.

8. Worth, not riches, win promotion.

$. Jr*y soul and my four-footed friend is all I have today.


*10. And all the way, the joyous people sings

And with their garments strews the paved streets.
11. It would not be wise for him to suddenly disappear.
TJ. Neither James nor John were able to eat their dinner.
lo. Marie, accompanied by her circle of friends, is exceedingly happy.
14. Here romps Jonos and his friends.
1 “>. Are either Mary or Julia married?

56. Illiterate Verb Forms. Aint has no place in English.
It is not a contraction of any phrase.

Such forms as mi’ n’t (for was not) and bein’s (bein’s it’s you)
i\ n> illiterate and not to be tolerated.

There is no such verb form as had ought; ought alone is
correct. Nor are there any such forms as would of, had of, etc.


1. What are the simple tenses; the compound (perfect) tenses?

J. What does the past perfect tense denote? The future perfect?

:>. What are the eight different simple forms of the verb be?

\. What three present tense forms have we for a verb? Illustrate.

5. A re verbs inflected for person? Number? Voice? Mood? Tense?

6. Explain the meaning of the italicized clause in Section 33.
7 \Vhy are certain verb forms called principal parts?

8. Explain the “I have saw” error; the “I seen” error.

be transitive or intransitive? Can it take an object?

10. What is the test for *//. and .sr// Lay and lie?

1 1. What errors in the use of shall and will are most common?

1J What is the general relation between shall and should? Will and

1 i. Can you write a possible last line for a fourth stanza of “Mood-”
hich shall be indicative and negative?

14. Explain the principles governing the agreement of subject and



67. Inflection of Pronouns. The personal pronouns are
inflected more than nouns. Their inflection, however, consists
more in the use of different words, than in variations of form.

EXAMPLES of inflection by the use of different words:

I me we us

EXAMPLE of inflection by variation of the same word:
he him

Every student knows the pronoun forms through daily use,
but many need their attention called to the principles violated
by their errors.

68. Person. The primary distinction in personal pronouns
is in the matter of person.

FIRST PERSON (Person speaking):

I, my 1, mine, me; we, our, ours, us
SECOND PERSON (Person spoken to) :

You, your, yours
THIRD PERSON (Person spoken of):

He, his, him; she, her, hers; it, its; they, their, theirs, them

The only common error involving person occurs when some
careless speaker uses second person you with third (or first)
person was. A verb must agree with its subject in person-
(Section 54).

(Incorrect) (Correct)

You was there, wasn’t you? You were there, weren’t you?

A relative pronoun depends for its person on the word to
which it refers its antecedent.

EXAMPLES: (1) I who am, etc. (Who is first person.)

(2) You who are, etc. (Who is second person.)

(3) He who is, etc. (Who is third person.)

1 The possessive forms are included in Sections 58 and 59 because they have been
habitually associated with the other forms here placed with them. It should be noted,
however, that the Joint Committee on Grammatical Nomenclature has made a special
class of possessive pronouns, including mine, ours, yours, his, hers, theirs, whose; and class-
ifies my, our, your, his, her, its, their, and whose as potsersive adjective* when they modify



Sometimes, at first glance, who used in the first person
may seem wrong, as in the following sentence:

It is for me, who am the loser, to decide.

This is correct, however, because who refers to me, first person,
and am is the first person form of the verb.

The other common relative pronouns which and that are
similarly of the person of their antecedents, but they do not

change in form.

59. Number. The singular and plural forms of the per-
sonal pronouns are as follows:

Singular Plural

I, my, mine, 1 me we, our, ours, us

you. your, yours you, your, yours
he, liis, him )

hers \ they, their, theirs, them

1 interrogative pronouns are not iuilerted for
number, but an* in construction of the same number as their

:ifr:iid in. iiigular).

:’ may st:iy t plural).


Wl; ..icii you mean (phi!

indefinite pronouns are singular, but some are

0′ ! compoir

iiid nil Minilar

footnote on page 02.


Note particularly the list of singular indefinites, especially
the combinations with <>ne and body. When a personal pronoun
refers to an indefinite antecedent, probably a majority of
people forget the rule that a pronoun must agree with its ante-
cedent in number. The trouble can be traced in many < to a feeling for gender. You begin, "If any one has a knife, will " Here you don't want to say he, since that seems to exclude the other sex. She would be as bad. So you coin- promise by finishing, "will they let me take it, please?" But any one is singular; they is plural. The pronoun does not agree with its antecedent in number. The difficulty has led to several half-hearted attempts to coin new words. "Hiser" and "himer" for "his or her" and "him or her" have been suggested, to fill the need of singular forms that can serve either masculine or feminine gender. uch attempts are sure to fail. We must, then, fall back on the forms of either he or she. Since he refers to man meaning the race of man, both men and women it is the logical form to use. Hence, "If any one here has a knife, will he please let me take it?" is the form in good use. And this applies to pronouns and ] e adjectives in reference to all the indefinites listed on page 63 as singular, including those made by the use of one and bodi/. Even every one and everybody, though they are collective and actually imply more than one person, are singular. You never think of saying, "Every one were there"; "Everybody were there." You instantly feel that was must go with one and with everybody. Yet when you wish later to refer to the same word that you have instinctively felt to be singular, you say, nine times out of ten. "Every one was there with their golf clubs"; "Everybody was there as soon as they could come." Singular indefinites, when used as adjectives instead of pro- nouns, and singular nouns used indefinitely, must be treated exactly like singular indefinite pronouns. EXAMPLES: (1) Each boy must do his (not their) part. (2) A person must be careful what he says (not they nay). I'KONOTNs 65 EXERCISE 23 the correct word in each of t^e following sentences. Do you understand each case fully? 1. Is everybody through with (his, their) work? 2. Each of the pupils told (his, their) story differently. 3. England expects every man to do (his, their) duty. 4. The committee brought in (their, its) report. 5. Every one in the crowd had to look out for (themselves, himself). ii. Almost every one thought (he, they) knew the answer. 7. Neither Helen nor Fred has a right to do as (he, they) please (s). 8. Each of the girls went to (their, her) room(s). 0. Neither of the boys did (his, their) work well. M. If a person were to go there Sunday (they, he) could see the crowd. 60. .Gender. In the personal pronouns all three genders exist; but the forms are so universally known that they require no consideration here. The gender of relative and interrogative pronouns, however, requires brief treatment. Who refers to a personal antecedent, either masculine or feminine. MPLES: The man who .... The woman who .... This is true also of who as an interrogative pronoun. EXAMPLES: Who is that man? Who is that woman? Which refers now only to things and animals: that is, it is ordinarily neuter. [puts: My pen, which my father gave me .... 'lli'- deer which 1 shot .... I 'ormerly which sometimes had reference to persons "Our Father which art. .. ." As an interrogative it may now n-fT to persons Which of the boys did you mean? That may refer to persons or animals or tliin MPLES: The man that 1 meant .... The horse that ran away .... The hou^r //, (Possessive Adjectives or Pronouns) 1 :

my your his her its our their whose

mine yours hers ours theirs

< >hjective Case (Accusative-Dative Ca-
me you him hrr it us them whom

62. Nominative Uses. The nominative form of the pronoun
should be used:

(a) When the pronoun is the subject of any form of a verb
except the infinitive. (See Section 64e.)

I .\ \MIM.I;: / saw you toss the kites on high

And blow the birds about the sky. Stevenson

The only common error here is the illiterate use of an
objective form in a compound subject.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

Him and me went over to Lake He and / went over to Lake

Str- Street.

(b) When it is a predicate pronoun after any form of a verb
except the infinitive. (See Section 64e.)

Kx AMPLE: It was he you saw across the street.

1 In this table the terms possessive and objective are used because they have been
practically universal in English grammar and because they represent most obviously the
functions of the different forms. That is, the forms called possessive are those used to
show possession, and when pronouns are used for objects they have the forms called objec-
tive. For the sake of uniformity of terms in all languages, however, the Joint Committee
on Grammatical Nomenclature has recommended that the possessive forms be called, not
the possessive case, but possessive adjectives or possessive pronouns, according to their
use; and that the forms called objective above be called the accusative dative case the
accusative being the case of the direct object in many languages and the dative the case
of the indirect object.

EXAMPLE of possessive adjective: That is my book.

EXAMPLE of possessive pronoun: Mine is the book with the red cover.


A predicate pronoun should be as readily recognized as a
predicate noun (see Section 7c). It occurs most often after
some form of be; and it differs from an object in that it always
means or refers to the same person or thing as the subject. It
also agrees in case with the subject. It does not follow a verb
that can have an object.

Yet perhaps no other rule in grammar is violated oftener
than this. We hear “It’s her,” “I’m him,” and “It is me 1 ”
more frequently than the correct forms. Incorrect expressions
that have become a part of our daily speech can be avoided only
by watchful effort. Practice saying “It is she,” “I am he,”
“It is I,” until it becomes instinctive for you to use the nomina-
tive forms for predicate pronouns.

(c) When the pronoun is in apposition with a nominative.
A noun or pronoun that is added to explain the meaning of a
preceding noun or pronoun is called an appositive. The two
words are said to be in apposition.


(1) Franklin, the philosopher, was born in Boston, in 1700.

(2) We, John and 7, stayed that night in Charleston..

Appositives “sometimes dull the sense of case. No one
familiar with English would say, “Us want a party” ; but when
a noun is put in apposition with us, people sometimes forget
that the pronoun is the subject and must be nominative.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

_’irls want a party. We girls want a party.

no one would say, “He went with we”; yet we often

IK-MI- the following statement :

(Incorrect) (Cor

}[> \M-nt with m hoys. li<- went with ?/.s- 1 ii tfriuimuir n-romii/.c tin- us of inr iu a"quaai-noimna- b," because it has b ommon in colloquial KuKli*h. 'n>< % moet in be mid f' it la perhaps defensible In colloquial ufs option to an otherwise regular rule; hut, nu onh:i:iry niu-l-Tii <-:m afford lime of the risk that he will I- thought Ignorant Ami (',. i regarded as wrong constitute* no defense whatever fur "It ish< r," Ii 68 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH 63. Possessive Uses. The possessive forms of pronouns are mainly used as adjectives i. e., to modify nouns or pro* nouns. EXAMPLES: my book, his hat, her watch, their clothes. Possessive forms may also be subjects, objects, etc. EXAMPLES: (1) Mine was the largest apple. (2) She lost hers yesterday. There is no apostrophe in any possessive form of the personal pronouns. (Incorrect) (Correct) The book was her's. The book was h> /-.<. That pencil is your's. That pencil is ynur.i. The gray house is owr's. The gray house is o/r.s. The brown one is their's. The brown one is theirs. Some of it j s windows are broken. Some of its windows are broken. The most frequent error related to the possessive forms of pronouns occurs in connection with the verb forms ending in ing, called gerunds. There are gerunds identical in form with all the participles except the past participle (the third princi- pal part). These forms are as follows for strike: Active Passive Present: striking being struck Perfect:' having struck 1 having been struck 1 The uses of the participle and the gerund are entirely different, however, for the former is a verbal adjective, while the latter is a verbal noun. Now examine the sentence, "I heard of his having been struck." Why is his used and not him? Because having been struck, a gerund, is used as a noun with the preposition of. The sentence does not mean "I heard of him"; it means "I heard of the fact that he was struck." A noun cannot be modified by an objective (accusative-dative) pronoun, like him; the possessive, an adjective, is required. 1 Called past and phrasal past in the Report of the Joint Committee on Grammatical Nomenclature. PRONOUNS 69 The same principle applies when a form of a noun is the modifier of a gerund. The possessive (genitive) is necessary. EXAMPLE : What do you think of Tom's winning that race? EXERCISE 24 (a) Use the correct form in each of the following sentences. Give reasons. i 1. What do you think of (father's, father) working so hard? 2. We had expected to hear of (your, you) startling the world with your invention. 3. I had not heard of (his, him) having been hurt. 4. Have you heard of (Harry, Harry's) losing his watch? 5. What do you think of (me, my) running for mayor? (b) Are the following sentences correct? 1. His father objects to us helping them. 2. They insist on every student making a map. 3. I knew of his having lost his mind. 4. His falling in love with the maid is real comedy. 5. Have you heard of Mary and my failing to meet each other? 6. The coach saw him running. 7. The policeman saw him running. 64. Objective Uses. The objective (accusative-dative) form of the pronoun is used: (a) When the pronoun is the direct object of a verb. We buried him darkly at dead of night, The sod with our bayonets turning. "The Burial of Sir John Moore," Wolfe Care is often needed when there is more than one object. Incorrect) (Correct) Hi- HtW H ! n :md /. He s;uv Helen and me. In :nv -in-li sentence <>mit nil object- but the pronoun, ane evident.


(b) When the pronoun is used with a preposition to form
a phrase.

To him who in the love of nature holds
Communion with her visible forms, she speaks
A various language.

“Thanatopsis,” Bryant

Be sure to discover all the words that go with the preposition.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

(1) He did it for Charles and /. (!) He did it for Charles and me.

(2) That can easily be done by (2) That can easily be done by

you and he. you and him.

To test this construction, omit one of the words following the
preposition. “He did it for I” is instantly felt to be wrong.
The nominatives, / and he, must be replaced by the objectives,
me and him.

Be watchful as to what word goes with a preposition,
even if it is some distance away.

Whom did you say the messenger g:m- the letter tot 1

(c) When the pronoun is the indirect object of a verb.

“Give us a song,” the soldiers cried,
The outer trenches guarding.

“A Song of the Camp,” Bayard Taylor

The same blunder mentioned in (a) and (b) occurs in this
case also.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

( live Harry and 7 the ball. Give Harry and me the ball.

You would never think of saying, “Give / the ball.” Why,
then, “Give Harry and I”?

(d) When the pronoun is in apposition with a noun or
another pronoun in the objective (accusative) case.

l-!\ VMPLB: The broken will allowed the farm to pass to John him
who had been so unkind to his father.

1 Some writers object to a preposition at the end of a sentence. Sometimes such a
construction is awkward, but in many cases it is idiomatic and proper.


Him agrees with John in case, being in apposition with John.
A relative pronoun is never in apposition with its ante-
cedent. It should never be argued that since the antecedent
is nominative and the pronoun “means the same” as the ante-
cedent, the pronoun should be nominative also.

Kx AMPLE: It was I whom you saw. / is nominative; whom is the
object of saw, hence objective.

(e) When the pronoun is the subject or object of an infini-
tive, or when it is the predicate pronoun after an infinitive.

EXAMPLES: (1) Mother wanted me to meet him,
(2) They thought him to be me.

Examine the first example carefully. Me is not the object
of the verb wanted. Mother did not want me: she wanted a
meeting to take place; she wanted me to meet him. Me to meet
him is the object of wanted. It is an infinitive clause of which me
is the subject and him the object. Both words are recognized
at once as objective.

The second example is to be analyzed in the same way
except that to be cannot have an object. Me in this case is a
predicate pronoun after the infinitive, and is objective to agree
with the subject of the infinitive.

Note that if we change the object clause so that it contains
a finite verb (any verb of the indicative, -imperative, or sub-
junctive mood) instead of an infinitive, the case of the pro-
nouns must be changed thus:

They thought he was /.

Any form of be, then, which is between the subject ami a

predicate noun or pronoun, is preceded and followed by the
< case. This rule applies, however, only when he, is the m.'iin verb. In the sentence, "He was striking me," was is only Iping (auxiliary) verb; strike is the m:iin verb, appearing in the |KiM progressive form. Henre me 8) i- not required in Agree with In- ( nominal ive i. but i> in the regular form for the invited. (1) My wife and / were invited.

(2) They invited myself and wife. (2) They invited my wife and me.

(3) Did you hurt yout (3) Did you hurt yourself?

The intensive pronouns may, however, be in apposition
with a noun or a pronoun.

EXAMPLES: John himself was present.
I myself saw him do it.

There are no such words as hisself and theirsebes. Itself ia
the proper form, not its self.

(d) Each other (as careful analysis of the parts will indicate)
implies a reference to two persons or things; one another, to
more than two.

(Undesirable) (Better)

The three men despised each other. The three men despised one another.
The two boys loved one another. The two boys loved each other.

(e) Learn the difference between aught, meaning “any-
thing,” and naught, meaning “nothing.” With these words is


sometimes confused tho verb ought, which originally meant
“owed” and is now used to express duty.

EXAMPLE: If he had done aught wrong, he ought to let naught stand
in the way of apology.

(f ) The former and the latter (which are sometimes classed
as pronouns when used independently of nouns) should be
employed only in comparing two persons or things. If more
than two are being considered, use first and last, or first, second
third, etc.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

1 have read Ivanhoe, The Talisman, I have read Ivanhoc, The Talisman,
and The Heart of Midlothian. and The Heart of Midlothian.

I like the former better. I like the first best.


(a) Underscore adjectives and doubly underscore pronouns
in the following sentences:

1. This is the first I have seen this year.

2. This fact does not appeal to those who hold these particular views.

(b) Which word group is correct in each of the following’.’

1. The duel 1 was abandoned, the combatants [watch your pronunciation 1

agreeing to apologize to (each other, one another).
‘2. The twins resemble (each other, one another).
ii. This ticket will admit (you and your partner, yourself and partner).

(c) Are the following sentences correct? If not, correct

1. Nelson and Henderson left today for Little Rock and Memphis. Tin-

former will be visited first.

2. Leffler, who works for Wright c inc.


1. An- pronoun- mflertrd for person? Cruder? Numb-

2. How do \v.- ili-M-rminr tin- person ami number <> ;ioun?

1 Notice the difference from dual.


3. Name ten indefinite pronouns.

4. Why is they improper when used to refer to person or one?

5. Is us or girls “object” of the preposition to in the following sentence,
“He gave it to us girls”?

6. Do personal pronouns ever use the apostrophe to show possession?
Do indefinite pronouns?

7. Is a possessive pronoun really a pronoun or is it an adjective?

8. What is the greatest danger in using a compound object consisting
of two or more pronouns? (Sec. 64.)

9. Explain in your own words the first paragraph on page 71.

10. la the subject of a verb always nominative?

11. Is the object of a verb or a preposition always objective?

12. What is the law for the use of former and latter and first and last?



66. Position of Adjectives. An adjective modifiers a noun
or a pronoun. There are two common positions for adjectives :

(a) Near the noun or pronoun modified usually just before
it. Thus gray in the following couplet modifies the noun trout.

Where the pools are bright and deep,
Where the gray trout lies asleep.

“A Boy’s Song,” James Hogg

(b) In the predicate. What is the predicate in the first
line above? What do the adjectives bright and deep describe?
That is, what idea is made clearer by these words? Since these
words are in the predicate, though they describe the noun pools,
they are called predicate adjectives. (See Section 7d).

Be (see Section 28) is the verb most commonly followed by a
predicate adjective, but many other verbs may be so followed.

EXAMPLES: become, seem, appear, look, sound, smell, taste, feel.

In general, a verb that can have a predicate noun can also
have a predicate adjective.

EXAMPLES: Predicate noun Predicate adjective

1. He was a fisherman. 1. He was angry.

2. He became president. 2. He became famous.

67. Comparison of Adjectives. Adjectives are inflected in
only one way to show different degrees of quality or quantity.
]-‘>r instance, one thing may be good, another may be better,
while a third may be best. This inflection is called compari-
son; the three decrees of comparison are positive, or the simple
form, comparative, and superlative.

AMPLES: Positive Comparative i\

IOIIK lotip-r longest

fun- fiiu-r finest

lonely IciiH-lirr loneliest



This method of adding er and est (or r and st if the positive
form ends in e), with change of a final y to i if necessary,
applies regularly to monosyllables and sometimes to longer
adjectives; but many words of two syllables and practically
all words of more than two syllables seem too long if er or est
is added. Consequently a second common method of com-
parison consists in preceding the positive form by more for
the comparative degree, and by most for the superlative.

EXAMPLES: Positive Comparative Superlative

beautiful more beautiful most beautiful

faithful more faithful most faithful

In many cases the choice between the first and the second
methods of comparison is discretionary, based on euphony.
Thus we find the following by Coleridge: “The faithfulest
of all the camp.”

A few adjectives use a different root in comparison. These
are all very common words, however, and a complete list is not

I \\MPLES: Positive Comparative Superlative
bad (ill, evil) worse worst

good (well) better best

little less lc:ust

much (many) more most

68. Comparison of Adverbs. Adverbs are compared just
like adjectives, except that the number adding er and est is
much more limited than in the case of adjectives. These suf-
fixes are not easily added to the most common adverbial ending,
ly; so that more and most are used in the great majority of
adverbial comparisons.

. EXAMPLES: Positive Comparative Superlative

hard harder hardest

suddenly more suddenly most suddenly

69. Difficulties Due to Inflection for Degree. Several
important points depend upon the comparison of adjective
and adverbs.


(a) When only two persons, things, or ideas are being com-
pared, we use the comparative form the one ending in er.

EXAMPLES: (1) John is the taller of the boys.

(2) Of the horses the darker is the better.

Because of this rule it is often possible to indicate two without a
direct statement. Thus in the examples above we know that
only two boys are mentioned, and only two horses, though the
word two does not occur. It is a bad error to use the superlative
in relation to one of only two persons or things.

(b) Sometimes a lack of clear thinking causes absurdity in
the completion of a comparison. Examine the following sen-

The elephant is larger than any animal in the world.

Two inferences are possible from this statement: First, the
elephant is an “animal in the world”; yet the elephant is larger
than “any animal in the world.” Therefore the elephant is
larger than the elephant. Or, secondly, the elephant is not ari
“animal in the world.” Both inferences, plainly, are non-
r in the original sentence is to be corrected by inserting UK-
word other.

h -pliant is larger than any other animal in the world.

Notice that it is only in the comparative degree that this

trouble arises, \\ ‘< not say that the elephant “is the largest

of all otltu- animals,” for the elephant is not a member of the
”other animal-” irjoup. Neither do \ve say, “Tin 1 elephant is
the >f any animal in the world”; if we wish to u-=e the

-uperlativc, wo simply say, “The elephant is the laiL:<-t animal in the world." IVware of double ry the U06 of bo1


and more, or both est and most. speaks of “the most
unkindest cut,” but this usage is not now sanctioned.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

He is less richer than he was last He is less rich than he was last
year. year.

He is not so rich as he was last year.

(d) There are certain adjectives and adverbs that in their
positive forms really express superlative ideas, so that on careful
analysis it seems illogical to compare them. Thus we can
hardly speak of one dead person as deader than another, or a
third as deadest of all. Or if a bucket is really empty, another
bucket cannot be emptier. Other adjectives of similar char-
acter are:

unique eternal infinite mortal

everlasting matchless universal omnipotent

The natural tendency to compare is strong, however. Such
adjectives as round, square, straight strictly interpreted
would scarcely admit of comparison; yet one would not hesitate
to say, “My apple is the roundest in the basket,” or “This line
is straighter than that.” It is even proverbial to speak of
some thing or person as tl deader than a door-nail.” One must
be watchful to avoid absurdity, however. Often a comparison
with more nearly, most nearly, will accurately express the mean-
ing. Thus while there can hardly be degrees of omnipotence,
one sovereign may be more nearly omnipotent than another.


(a) Discuss the following questions (as to English, not fact) :

1. Is God wiser than any man?

2. Is Rebecca (in Ivanhoe) sweeter than any character of fiction?

3. Is Clara Barton more noble (or nobler) than any character of fiction?

4. Is Charles the most favored of all the other contestants?

5. Is sentence 4 right even it we omit other? Why?


(b) Make all necessary corrections in the following sen-
tences :

1. The rounder half of a clam shell is the smoothest.

2. His left shoe is best.

3. He bought the most expensive half.

4. England is the strongest sea power in the Triple Entente.

5. John is the tallest of the twins.

6. Washington was more sedate than any of our presidents.

7. I like candy better than anything.

8. God is most high most omnipotent.

9. The bin was becoming more empty day by day.

10. Fred, Laura, and Mary Brown visited Somerfield Tuesday, the

former being on his way to Cumberland.

11. June 22 is the longest day in the year.

12. Currants are better for jelly than any small fruit.

70. Adjective or Adverb. Sometimes it seems difficult to
decide whether an adjective or an adverb should be used; but
if the student can determine the modifier and the word that is
being modified, he will have little trouble. If the word modi-
fied is a noun or a pronoun, use an adjective; otherwise, use
an adverb.

EXAMPLES : (a) The rose is sweet.

(b) The ostrich runs swiftly.

In (a) rose evidently is the word modified, and since it is a
noun we must use an adjective (here a predicate adjective).
In (b) runs is modified; it is not a noun or a pronoun, but a
verb hence the adverb swiftly.

If all cases were as simple as the examples just given, there
would be little trouble; but in such sentences as “The music

uds sweet (sweetly)” a question presents itself. Is the music
t. or does it reach the hearer in a sweet manner i. e.,
sweetly? Usually the sweetness is regarded as primarily a
quality of the music, and the adjective is used. Yet a slight
change in the sentence will place the emphasis on the manner
in which tin; sound travels, and thereby dictate the use of an

erb. Most people have enjoyed distant music across the
water, wh.-n doubtless (he sweetness of the music i< enhanced 82 VOCATIONAL KNCILISH. by the way it reaches the hearer. That is, the sweetm- felt to be in part due to the sounding. Then sounds is the word modified and we have: "The music sounds sweetly across the water." In general, verbs of the five senses (look, feel, sound, taste, and smell) and a few others, including seem, appear, and stand, are followed by adjectives. EXAMPLES: (1) The rose smells sweet. (2) The candy tastes good. (3) They seem ha />/>//.

(4) Patriots stand Jinn.

In these cases, clearly, some form of be could be substituted as
the verb without materially changing the meaning, showing
unmistakably that predicate adjectives are called ‘for. But
when the same verbs place the emphasis on action, or the
manner of acting, they are followed by adverbs.

EXAMPLES: (1) The dog smelled suspiciously at the stranger’s boots.

(2) The blind man feels skillfully with his hands.

(3) Thr sailor stands firmly on the deck.

In these cases no form of be could be substituted as the verb
without decided change of meaning. A handy rule, sufficiently
exact for most occasions, is this: The verbs expressing the
five senses are followed by adjectives unless they mean action.


Examine the following sentences carefully and decide
(a) whether both forms may be correct; (b) if so, what the
differences in meaning are; (c) if only one form is correct, which
one. Give reasons in every case.

1. She felt (sick, sickly).

‘2. He looked (ivretched, wretchedly).

3. He feels (gentle, gently).

4. Will you help me? (Sure, surely).

5. I am (near, nearly) suffocated.

6. Do your work (thorough, thoroughly).

7. He looked up (sick, sickly).

8. He was hurt (bad, badly).


71. The “Flat Adverbs.” While the great majority of
adverbs that correspond to adjectives are formed by the
addition of ly to the adjective form, many common words
without the final ly are used as either adjectives or adverbs.
In the latter use they are sometimes called “flat adverbs/*

I.XAMPLES: (1) Go slow. (3) Dig deep.

(2) Talk loud< /-. (4) Look quick. In spite of objections by purists who would like to see street sitrus read "Proceed slowly" rather than "Go slow," the "flat adverbs," because of their brevity and directness, are in many crises idiomatic in conversation and in business usage. The student should not assume that he may use either the "flat adverb" or the form in ly at will, however. It is better to err on the side of conventional correctness than to give an impres- sion of carelessness in grammar by using a "flat adverb" that is not well established in idiomatic use. The following uses, however, are correct: 1. He studied hard till eleven o'clock. _. I Ie ran as fast as he could. 3. That is easier said than done. (The more formal adverb would be more easily.) 4. He sold his house cheap. -trike as low as you can. lx)ve me little, love me lomj." EXERCISE 3O Which of the following are correct? In which cases would you prefer other forms? i. Train* move swifter than _'. Talk louder, please. (You is understood to he the subject of the verl>

‘.’>. I ‘in do it easier than 1 could la>t j
bfl >e\ved much faster tli.-in I.

Miusic sounds loud.
hfl trumpet, sounds loud.

was einpr ich trip.

8. T in safe and -ound.

‘.) If– u’.t the ‘ lick.

In. i .-ad.


72. Some Special Adjectives and Adverbs. In the follow-
ing cases errors are very frequent :

(a) Bad and badly. Bad is in very common use in the sense
of ill or unwell, or perhaps uncomfortable, or in almost any
meaning implying an unpleasant condition, as illustrated in the
following sentences:

1. She felt bad yesterday.

2. My back feels bad today.

3. I felt bad not to be able to go to the game.

These are colloquial uses and have often been criticized, but
they are idiomatic and practically universal. The notion that
such uses of the adjective bad are to be corrected by substituting
the adverb badly is absurd, because in every such case the
construction requires a predicate adjective, not an adverb at
all. He feels badly cannot logically mean anything but that
“He performs the act of feeling in a bad (or inefficient) manner.”

(b) Double negatives. One negative for one idea is enough
in English. Everybody knows what a gross error it is to say,
“He never did nothing to nobody,” yet there is much carelessness
in this matter. Another form of the error occurs in connection
with such words as hardly, scarcely, and neither.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

(1) I hadn’t hardly got there. (1) I had hardly got there.

(2) I couldn’t do it neither. (2) I couldn’t do it either.

The common expression, “Two negatives make an affirmative,”
is literally true in such combinations as not impossible, which
means exactly the same thing as possible.

(c) Good and well. Good is an adjective; well is an adverb
except when it means in health. It is then an adjective.

EXAMPLES: (1) He is a good man.

(2) But he has not been well for years (adjective).

(3) He manages to work well, however (adverb).

There is a colloquial use of good, mainly witfi the verb feel,
that is the exact counterpart of the colloquial use of bad:


in, “I felt good yesterday.” This meaning is hardly so neces-
sary or so well established as the corresponding use of bad,
since it is easier to find a satisfactory substitute for good.

(d) Kind o’ and sort o’. The use of these expressions as
adverbs is a very crude colloquialism.

EXAMPLE : I feel kind a’ (or o’) tired tonight, and it’s sort o’ chilly here.

The italicized words in such a sentence are exact equivalents
of rather or somewhat adverbs modifying tired and chilly.
There is a correct use for kind of and sort of, but kind and sort
are then nouns.

EXAMPLES: (1) Hydrox is a kind of water.
(2) He is the right sort of man.

The noun following kind of or sort of should not be modified
by a or an; that is, we say, “I do not like that kind of girl,” not
“that kind of a girl.” There could not be several kinds of one
girl ; the noun girl is used for the entire class.

(e) Less and fewer. Less is used for quantity, without
regard to the number involved. Fewer is used when one thinks
of the individuals making a group.

I EXAMPLES: (!) The distance is less than forty miles.

(2) Not fewer than forty men called on him.

(f) Most and almost. Most is concerned with number or
quantity; almost means nearly. Error often occurs because of
the colloquial contraction of almost to most. Try substituting

ID for the word in question. If the sense permits the change,
use almost; otherwise use most.

u-i.i;s: (1)1 was almost (nearly} tired out.

(2) Most AiiHTic.-ins run- littlr for royalty.

(g) Rarely and seldom with ever. Rarely ever, seldom ever,
and even se Idom or ever are H>met lines used wli /, seldom,


and seldom if ever are meant. To avoid such errors it is only
necessary to think a moment about what the words really mean.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

He rarely ever oomes to see us. He rarely comes to see us.

I seldom ever get to New York. I seldom get to New York.

She seldom or ever saw such a fine She seldom, if ever, saw such a fine

garden. garden.

(h) Real and very. Very is ordinarily an adverb. Some-
times very seems too strong a word, and real is used as an adverb
in its place, though real is properly only an adjective.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

I am real glad to hear it. I am very glad to hear it.

Really is a perfectly good adverb; but “I am really glad to
hear it” is not equivalent to “I am very glad to hear it.”

(i) Some and somewhat. Some is an adjective or a pronoun
in its ordinary uses; as an adverb in place of somewhat it is not
accepted by careful speaker^ nnd writers.

(Incorm-t) (Correct)

He was some better yesterday. He \v:is somewhat better yesterday.

(j ) There and their. There is an adverb ; their is a poss< adjective, or the possessive form of the plural third-person pro- noun. Confusion between these words is primarily a matter of spelling or carelessness in spelling, for most pupils really know the difference. There may imply place. EXAMPLE : He went there yesterday. Or it may be used as a kind of spring-board for a sentence; this is called the expletive use. EXAMPLE : There is said to be much coal in Alaska. Their is always possessive and always used as an adjective. (k) Through as an adjective. The use of through as a predicate adjective in such sentences as "I was through before noon," where the meaning is "I had finished before noon," is ADJECTIVES Ai\D ADVEKBIS 87 colloquial only. But through is correctly used as an adjective in such expressions as "a through train." (1) Too, to, and two. These three little words are the ' despair of the teacher. It matters not how many times they are explained; the pupil will write, "He was to tired." The best corrective is to look carefully at what you have written. Too is an adverb, meaning (a) more than enough or (b) also. To is H preposition. Two is a number either noun or adjective. EXAMPLES: (a) My mind to me a kingdom is, Such present joys therein I find. Sir Edward Dyer (b) But such a tide as moving seems asleep, Too full for sound or foam. Tennyson (c) I loo would bear my part. (m) Where adverbs. Anywhere, everywhere, nowhere, some- where are a group of accepted adverbs. Place cannot be used. instead of where in these words; but place as a noun may be modified by the adjectives any, every, no, or some. In the latter of course, the noun and the adjective will be distinct words. EXAMPLES: I could not find him anywhere. (Anyplace would bo wrong.) There wasn't any place for me. Somewhere the HUH is shining. I should like to find some place where I can rest. EXERCISE 31 Choose the proper word for each of the following sentences, <>r in cases of error make the necessary corrections:

1. I can’t write as (well, good) as you.
_’. I h:id (nowhere, noplace) to go.

! >oes the dinner taste (good, well)”!

J. It was a kind of a shame you couldn’t come.
.”.. I \V;LS kind of ashamed of iiiyx-lf.

felt so badly about it that 1 cried.
7. Tlifp tii ten thousand people present.

> ^s, fewer) bet\\c< n ( 'Im-a^o mid Omaha than betv York and ( 'hira^o. y. She sang so (Ixid, bndl>i\ I could hardly bear to listen.
10. Hi- hadn’t been (good, well) in health for months.



‘ (a) Complete the following sentences with either most or

1. of them came yesterday.

2. I \ras sure they would come.

3. every one believes he 1 could succeed as President.

4. men have little chance to become President.

(b) Fill the blanks with real or very:

1. Is that a diamond?

2. I like your now suit well.

3. Those wax figures look.

4. We were glad to find the garment trimmed in point


(c) Fill the blanks with there or their:

1. are hats in the hammock.

L*. And horses stood, reins under feet.

(d) Fill the blanks with to, too, or two. After writing 1 he-
exercise once, destroy the paper and write it again. Do not
forget that the misuse of to or too is sure to call down the
wrath of most employ’

1. him many.

2. They gave him

3. Then : is many one address.

4. He c:;mc, from four p. m.

5. I see a machine is dangerous the

lives of the men entrusted the commanders.


1. Adjectives occur in what two positions in a sentence?

2. Why are adjectives compared?

3. What two general methods of comparison are in use?

4. When should you use taller? Tall

Resist any tendency to vise they.


5. Are pickles sourer than anything?

6. How does the adverb usually differ in form from the adjective?

7. We should not say “kind of an apple.” Why? (See p. 85.)

8. What is the distinction between less and fewer? Real and very?
Good and well?

9. Is nearly a synonym for most or for almost?

10. la anyplace an accepted word? What would you substitute for



73. Definition of Preposition. The word preposition is
made of pre and positus. These parts are found, respectively,
in prefix and position. Evidently they mean placed before. A
preposition, accordingly, is a word usually “placed before” a
noun or pronoun (or some word used as such) to show a relation
of that noun or pronoun with some other word. A preposition
is said to “govern,” grammatically, the noun or pronoun taken
with it, and with that noun or pronoun it forms a phni

To, with, from, of, upon, are common prepositions. Count-
ing such combinations as according to, in regard to, on account of,
etc., which may be called compound prepositions,- there are
about a hundred prepositions in common use in English. They
are of great importance for several reasons. One of the>
the extent to which English has lost its inflections; relation-^
shown in many other languages by inflectional means must be
indicated in English by a careful choice of prepositions. Again,
a large part of the trouble with English idiom is clue to a
failure to understand the exact uses of prepositions.

Prepositions are not inflected. Nouns and pronouns
verned by prepositions, however, are objective (accusative).

74. Prepositions Sometimes Confused. The following pairs
of prepositions often cause trouble because people fail to
understand how they differ in meaning:

(a) At and to. At implies a fixed position; to implies
motion. Thus, “He’s not to home,” “When I was to school,”
are very bad errors. At should replace to.

(b) Between and among. Between is used in relation to two
persons or things; among in relation to more than two. ‘

Kx AMPLKS: Racine is between Chicago and Milwaukee. Among the
cities of Wisconsin it is noted for manufacturing.


A careful use of these two prepositions will sometimes
enable a writer or speaker to reduce the number of his words
in expressing an idea. For example, what word can be omitted
from the following sentence without any loss?

She divided the apples between the two boys.

In the following sentence what do you know as to the number
uf the heirs?

The property was divided among the heirs.
Avoid the following types of error:

(1) Drink a glass of water between each meal.

(2) There is an aisle between each row.

Say “after each meal” or “between meals,” and “between the

(c) By and to. “I went by the post office” is sometimes
heard when “to the post office” is meant. By is incorrect unless
past is meant.

(d) In and into. In implies a fixed position; into implies
entrance. Thus the difference between these words resembles
that between at and to. For example, “He walked into the
room” means that he entered it from outside; while “He
walked in the room” implies that he was already in the room
:uid simply walked about in it. One gets into (not in) trouble.

(e) Onto and upon. Onto has been formed on the model of
into and is in very common colloquial use, but most careful
writers prefer to avoid it. Usually on or upon may take its
place. On to (two words) may be correct.

1-i.f.: \\ e moved on to Hustings.

In thi< CUM-, however, <>n i- ;m adverb modifying moved, and the
prepo-itinn i- t.


(a) Fill the 1 >lanks below with in or into:

1. II’- put his hat the I

: his lint the

‘h lifo some ruin must fall.”


4. High over the quiet 1 city a single airplane drew sight.

5. The balloon came down a field of growing corn.

6. The great mine elevator sank silently the earth and was gone.

7. Let me live my house by the side of the road

And be a friend to man. 5am Walter Foss

(b) Correct errors in the following sentences:

1. Between you and I and the gatepost, I don’t believe that tale.

2. Were you to the ball game yesterday?

3. Between each row of corn they planted pumpkins.

4. I went in the house and got a sandwich.

5. He climbed onto the roof and got the ball.

6. Mother divided the orange between her three children.

75. Idiomatic Use of Prepositions. Many errors are due to
thfi use of wrong prepositions. Often there is no reason other
than custom for a particular combination with a preposition,
so that one simply has to “get the feel” of what is right.
Foreign-born students usually need to learn each idiom sep-
arately. The following list of correct uses of prepositions with
various common words is based on actual errors made by
students in composition:

accompany He was accompanied by (not with} his two children.

accord His views accord with (not to) mine (or, are in accord-

ance with mine).

acquit He was acquitted of (not from) the crime.

advantage John had an advantage over James (or, took advantage
of him).

agree I agree u*ith him. I agree to his proposal.

arrive She arrived at (or in; not to) Chicago yesterday.

back Put it behind (not in back of) the desk. In front of

is accepted as a sort of compound preposition, but
in back of is & bad error. Back of is in colloquial
use, however.

bestow Parliament bestowed the crown upon (or on; not to)

the dead king’s nephew.

blame He blames me for it; or, He lays the blame on me.

The common expression blames it on is inexcusable.

characteristic Tony had the fiery temper characteristic of (not to)

* Pupils oiten confuse quiet and quite. Do you?



charge He was charged with (not of) this message. He was

charged for ten pounds of sugar.

comment I commented favorably on (not of) the book.
comply I wish to comply with (not to) your desires.
confer The emperor conferred a title on his aide-de-camp.

He conferred with his ministers before acting.
confide Because I confide in you (have confidence in you),

I am going to confide my secret to you.
connect The engine is connected with (not to) the car.
contrast Black contrasts with (is in contrast with) white.
customary The practice is customary with (or among; not to)


deal I deal with John Smith, who deals in groceries.

dependent Children are dependent on their parents, but later

become independent of them.

die He died of (better than with or from) consumption.

differ j different I differ with you in opinion because I differ from you

in character. I am very different from you. Differ-
ent than is a very bad blunder, for than is not a

due “My mistake was due to a misunderstanding” is a

correct sentence, in which due is a predicate adjective.

“Due to a misunderstanding I made a mistake” is

wrong, because here due to is improperly used as a

compound preposition meaning because of or owing to.
employ She is employed by Richard Roe in his office a* a

salary of $15 a week. She is in the employ of Mr.


familiar I am familiar with (not of) these facts.
give He gave his time to (not in) writing.

glad I am glad of it. Or, lam glad at the news.

hindrance A hindrance to (not in) one’s progress.
independent See dependent above.

Shakspere had wonderful insight into (not in or of)

listen Listen to (not at) him. One may also listen for

something one expects to hear.
I live in New York at Broadway and 118th str.
mend I made mention of (not on) it. Or, more briefly, I

mentioned it.

need I am not in need of (not for) anything.

part -!! parted from his parents in tears, l>ut lie refused to

part with his legacy.



plan I planned for (not on) a long journey.

revenge He wished to be revenged on (not to) all his enemies.
search The miner searched for gold (or, was in search of gold):

secret The secret of (not to) success is confidence.

separation Byron’s separation from (not with) his wife embitt< r-d him. set out We then set out for (not to) Italy. sick I am sick with (not of) the grippe. But sick of it is correct if the meaning is disgusted with it. similar This is similar to (not with) that. smile She smiled at (not to) the captain. student He was a student of chemistry in (or at) Amheret Coll surprise I was surprised at (not of) her absence. surround He was surrounded by (not with) a mob. treatment His harsh treatment of (not to) his brother caused the trouble. wait I'll wait for (not on) you. (I am not your servant.) But a servant waits on his master. 76. Redundant Prepositions. There is a marked tendency to heap up prepositions needlessly. Sometimes a particular redundant preposition may be regarded as allowed by idiom; but on the principle of saving useless words a very important principle for successful business it is usually desirable to omit such needless words as are illustrated below: (Incorrect) (1) I went to home. (I went to my home would be correct, however.) (2) Keep off of the grass. (3) I don't remember of hear- ing it. (4) He would not accept of our hospitality. (5) Taste of this pie. (6) Put it inside of the room. (Correct) (1) I went home. (Home is an adverb here; the construction does not admit a preposition.) (2) Keep off the grass. (3) I don't remember hearing it. (4) He would not accept our hospitality. (5) Taste this pie. (6) Put it inside the room. (When inside is a noun, how- ever, of is required; e. g., "The Inside of the Cup.") PREPOSITIONS AND CONJUNCTIONS 95 A good many prepositions are also adverbs, and are much used unnecessarily in their adverbial sense. Up is a particular- ly common offender in this way, being used needlessly with a ureat many verbs. Anyone interested in saving time for him- stelf or his employer may profitably consider whether the ittilicized words really add anything in such combination EMB the following: eat up, burn up (sometimes down), save up, ut Washington.

1. < 'io in. I'll wait you. his light is roniH-rted tho regular city service. 6. Many tlioi; : H-opl.- die yearly consumption. 7. When wo urrivod New York, the Maurctania was already port, i v different her sister. 9. My father was very aimry inc. H>. \\ I’.IOWIIB Naples.

II. !!’ ‘i !’-i-ure golfii



77. Definition of Conjunctions. Conjunctions, as the word
itself suggests, join something. They may join (a) words or
(b) groups of words.

EXAMPLE of (a) : Washington and Hamilton were friends.
EXAMPLES of (b) : 1. The canoe floated under the bridge and down the

2. I paddled cautiously because the water wa>

Groups of words, of course, are either phrases (as in example 1)
or clauses (as in 2). In the latter sentence, because connects
two statements. What are they?
Conjunctions are not inflected.

78. Kinds of Conjunctions. In matters of sentence struc-
ture and punctuation, it is important to know the two classes
of conjunctions, and to learn to distinguish them from adverbs.
Conjunctions are coordinating or subordinating.

(a) Coordinating conjunctions connect words of equal rank
in the sentence, phrases of equal rank, or clauses of equal rank.

EXAMPLES: (a) John and Mary went (connecting words).

(b) They \\vnt :iut it stops raining. unless it stops raining.

friends r./v/ /,/ Tom I !< had no friends unles* might be so considered. might be so conoid- 100 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH (c) // and whether. Do not use if in the place of whether in such a sentence as "I do not know if I can go." Whether is preferable here and or not may be added, if desired, to show an alternative. "I can go if he does" is perfectly correct, however. (d) Like as a conjunction. The misuse of like as a conjunc- tion, in place of as or as if or as though, is very common in some parts of the United States. Yet no blunder is more likely to brand one in the eyes of those who are careful. EXAMPLES: (Incorrect) (Correct) (1) It looks like it would rain. (1) It looks as if it would rain. (2) I wish you could play like your (2) I wish you could play as your sister does. sister does. Probably some of the confusion in this matter is due to the fact that in example 2 (incorrect), like would be perfectly proper if does were omitted. In "I wish you could play like your sister," like performs the office of a preposition. But it has not been accepted by careful writers and speakers as a conjunction. (e) Than is a conjunction. For this reason we cannot say, "I am taller than him," making it a preposition followed by the objective (accusative) form him. We must say, "I am taller than he (is)." "I chose her rather than him" is correct, however; not because than is a preposition, but because him is the object in the elliptical second clause, just as her is the object in the first clause. In other words, this sentence, fully expressed, means, "I chose her rather than (I chose) him." (f) As .... as and so .... as. In a positive compari- son we use as .... as. EXAMPLE: Cleveland is as large as Cincinnati. In a negative comparison we generally use so .... as. EXAMPLE: Chicago is not so large as New York. EXERCISE 35 (a) Insert except or without or unless in the blanks below: 1. One cannot win in the business field by making a careful study of each detail. 2. They all went fishing John. PREPOSITIONS AND CONJUNCTIONS 101 3. He never went his coat in warm weather. 4. One cannot hope to get more pay for his work he does more work for his pay. 5. when the editor accepts manuscripts, the writer a previous understanding does not hear from his paper he sends return postage. (b) Make whatever improvements you can in the connec- tives of the following sentences: 1. I don't know if I can go or not. 2. Your instructions are not clear and I failed to get the answer. (Try rearrangement with because.) 3. Do not decrease the time of exposure; cut down the light. (What word after the semicolon would help the sense?) 4. One should dress neatly. He should not be fastidious. (What word would connect these two sentences to advantage?) 5. He was hungry and he stole a loaf of bread. 6. It looks like I'd have to try again. 7. Let us try and find out what is good. EXERCISE 36 What conjunction would you use in each of the following nccs? List the conjunctions as coordinating and sub- ordinating. 1. He wore a heavy coat the day was warm. 'J. II e walked slowly he were lame. 3. He came in suddenly we had time to warn the family. 4. He left a dark mark he put his paws. 5. They paid their bills they had the money. 6. Mother put up lunch I got the car ready. 7 1 at her bought a hundred-dollar bond I bought a fifty. 8. He will he here on time the train is late. '.'. .Mm must come this way now the bridge is out at Dana. in \\ e hurried along it was growing late. 11. Cider vinegar is not strong distilled vinegar. 12. 1 Mary run. i .lolm knows more Tom does. 102 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH EXERCISE 37 A. Which of the following sentences need semicolons before the italicized words? (Read again Section 78b.) 1. He came slowly through the hall as though nothing had happened. 2. He has a cold besides I feel the day is too raw. 3. He was not well tfierefore his mother kept him at home. 4. He had no small change so he passed the beggar by. 5. He was dismissed because he was not able to carry his work. B. Choose the correct word in italics in each of the follow- ntcnces. 1. I do not know (if, whether) he doesn't. 2. I do not know (if, whether) he knows. 3. Nobody else can yell (like, as) him. 4. Nobody else can yell (like, as) he does. .5. I think you can draw better than (he, him). 6. Be sure (to, and) take your time. QUESTIONS ON CHAPTER VI 1. Why is the English prej>osition so important an element in the

J. What is the distinction between between and among? In and into.'
3. Without actually expressing niynber how can you indicate it by

the use of between and among? Longer and longest? Each other and .n-< />( and without? If and whether?
ke and as if? Is "than him" good English? Why?



80. The Need of Clearness. The first purpose of speech
or writing is, of course, the transmission of thought. But not
all communications accomplish this end. What is the meaning
of the following sentence?

John told Charlie that his books were in his locker.

Clearly it may mean several things. It may mean that
John's books were in his own locker; that they were in Charlie's
locker; that Charlie's books were in Charlie's locker; or that
they were in John's locker. This sentence, therefore, is useless.
It is not clear.

What two meanings can you get from the following sentence?

We were in danger of being killed more than once.

Of course there is no danger of a real misunderstanding of this
sentence; the worst that can happen is a laugh at the expense
of the speaker. But it is not to one's credit to be an uncon-
srinus humorist.

It is very necessary that a writer read over what he has
written before he considers his task complete. Often small
errors of the careless kind slip in perhaps the spelling of off
with one/, or the omission of a or the omissions which leave
tin- reader uncertain as to the meaning. Obscurities some-
times result from a failure to make the first and last parts of
a sentence agree in form or sense, owing in most cases to the
Hiperinr speed of the mind over the hand. Clear, pn

i-h is not easily written. It is often necessary to recast
and paragraphs to make sure that there is no po--
>ibility of a misunderstanding.

Th' M chapters have dealt with the fundamental

sentence and the parts ,, .. The following



sections will single out for special attention a number of com-
mon errors that result in obscurity.

81. Misplaced Words, Phrases, or Clauses. The second
bad sentence in the previous section illustrates the principle
that modifiers should usually be placed as near as possible to
the words they modify. Some very absurd statements result
from misplaced words. Why are the following sentences am-
biguous? Explain the change of position of the modifiers
necessary to correct the trouble.

1. Wanted: Girls to sew buttons on the 8th floor.

2. I saw a man digging a well with a large nose.

Be especially careful to place the adverb near the word it
modifies. Note the error in the following sentence :

(Incorrect) (Correct)

It is the largest fish I almost ever It is almost the largest fish I ever
caught. (I "almost caught" it.) caught.


Correct the following sentences, giving reasons for each

1. I planned to have my suit pressed every day this week.

2. We hurriedly packed our tents as soon as the sun rose and cooked our


3. Ericksen is to be tried for carrying concealed weapons on Friday.

4. Wanted: An attendant for an old lady who can walk rapidly.

5. He was untruthful; he even lied to his mother.

6. I should not pay for two meals; I only ate my breakfast.

7. She was the prettiest girl I almost ever met.

8. All the team were not present.

9. He was an ex-Italian banker.

Are you sure that you have the feeling of error when you
read the foregoing sentences? It is not enough that you see
the error; you must have a feeling akin to intuition that "It
was the best apple I almost ever ate" is really something very
different from the idea you had in mind.


82. Understood Words. To save words and avoid repeti-
tion, we often omit part of one construction that corresponds
to another construction in the sentence. Thus we may have,
for instance, one object for two prepositions, or one participle
completing two verbs.


(1) John was going to, and Charlie returning from town.

(2) We are and shall be going to church each week.

In the first example town is the object of both to and from.
In the second, are going and shall be going are the full forms, but
to avoid repetition of sound and to save words we omit the
first going.

Sometimes, however, the word following one construction
will not logically complete the other.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

We have and will continue to defy We have defied and will continue
him. to defy him.

Defied is required to complete the first verb; to defy, the second;
obviously to defy at the end of the sentence will not supply the
word defied needed to complete have.

Why is the following ambiguous? Are you sure that the
reader will "understand" the same words you have in mind?
( ' la< J. V. mder.-tood word'.' \\ i- 1 1n j>



in addition to the proper final mark for the one and the capital
that indicates the beginning of the other. But how are we to
show the groupings of words within a sentence? Sometimes,
of course, the meaning is so simple that no mistake is possible;
but often a sentence of twelve words may consist of two word
groups of seven and five, or three groups of four each, or
various other combinations.

We might conceivably separate word groups by spaces wider
than the space for words only.

EXAMPLE: Farther down the stream branched.

The wide space here is to prevent down and stream from coming
together, because down belongs with farther and stream with
branched; unless they are separated in some way there is danger
of a misunderstanding. But expand this sentence a little and
the grouping may be very different, thus:

Farther down the stream branched the'great highway.

Now stream belongs with down, not with branched; and branched
is the predicate verb for the subject highway. But there i< danger that the reader will see stream branched and think of stream as the subject of branched; hence the need of separating these words in some way. Of course the spacing of word groups is impractical, how- ever; for one reason, because different grades of spacing would be required. Sometimes we need to separate small groups of a few words each; sometimes combinations of such small groups. The result of an attempt to use space only would be that the reader would have to carry a ruler with him to measure accurat. - ly the size of the spaces. 88. Indicating Word Groups by Punctuation. Instead of leaving wider space between word groups than between single words, then, we long ago adopted the custom of inserting punctuation marks. In ordinary writing there are three prin- cipal grades of separation between word groups, indicated by three principal types of punctuation: PUNCTUATION 115 1. The comma (,) indicating the smallest degree of separa- tion that needs to be marked. 2. The semicolon (;). 3. The period* (.) or question mark (?) or exclamation mark (!), indicating usually the end of a sentence. USES OF THE COMMA 89. Words in a Series. Examine carefully the following sentence : Harvard Yale Brown the University of Chicago William and Mary Leland Stanford Dartmouth and Washington and Jefferson are well known educational institutions. Unless you happen to know already the names of all these institutions, can you tell certainly how many are mentioned? One ignorant of college names might easily think of Leland Stanford as Leland and Stanford two institutions, or of Washington and Jefferson as two. (In fact there are a Wash- ington University and a Jefferson College, as well as Washing- ton and Jefferson College.) There are four kinds of names in the list: (a) Single words (e. g., Yale). (b) A phrase (the University of Chicago). (c) A double form (Leland Stanford). (d) Names joined by and (e. g., William and Mary).. Obviously it is quite as necessary, in writing English as in selling , to tie up different articles in separate packages; the method in this case is the use of commas according to the rule that words in a series are separated by commas. Properly punc- tuated, the sentence above reads as follows: M, tin- I ni YI r-itv of Chicago, William and Mary, Lelnnd Stanford, Dartmouth, .-uid Washington and Jefferson are well known educational institutions. ':'! colon (:) occupied a position between the semicolon and the peri . t may now be so tuwd in rather elaborate writing; but commonly it IB tain special purposes to be dealt with in Section 99. tie daab, parentheses, quotation marks, etc., see Sections 100 ff. 116 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH There is a widespread idea, supported by some authority, that no comma is needed between the last two items of a series when a conjunction is used between them. The omission of the final comma is illogical, however, and may result in mis- understanding, as it would in the sentence just given. If the comma after Dartmouth were omitted, it would be impossible to tell whether "Dartmouth and Washington and Jefferson" meant one or two or three institutions. Or take another example : We took canned milk, potatoes, beans, coffee, bacon, and eggs on the trip. Without the comma after bacon, the reader might be justified in thinking that the popular dish bacon and eggs (cooked to- gether) was meant. The only sound rule to follow is that words in a series are separated by commas, and that a comma is necessary before a connective expressed between the last two, unless those two are related more closely than the other items in the list. 1 A series of adjectives modifying one noun on equal terms are likewise separated by commas. EXAMPLE: We went through a long, hard, dreary winter. Note that dreary, standing next to the word modified, is not separated from it. A series of adjectives modifying one noun are not always separated, however. A short series in very common use as a word group pronounced together may go without punctuation. EXAMPLES: (1) He was a noble old man. (2) She was a beautiful little girl. In cases like these it can be argued that the two adjectives are not really equal modifiers. The first sentence does not exactly mean that the man was noble and old ; it means that a certain old man (treated as if one word) was noble. Wherever this 'In business practice, however, the comma is often, though not always, omitted before and Company at the end of a firm name beginning with two or more personal names. EXAMPLES: Scott, Foreaman and Company. Longmans, Green, and Company. PUNCTUATION 117 sort of interpretation is proper, the comma (or commas) may usually be omitted. Of course the principle governing a series of words applies also to phrases and clauses. Note the following sentence: He searched in vain through the house in the front yard and about the barn. Does this mean that he searched in two places or in three? It might mean either. Correct punctuation of the series will dispel all doubt. 1. He searched in vain through the house, in the front yard, and about the barn. (Three places) 2. He searched in vain through the house in the front yard, and about the barn. (Two places) Study the following: The prodigal son left his home and his father ran through his patrimony and repented when there was nothing else to do. Unless you know the story, you are likely to think that the father ran through either his own or his son's patrimony and repented; whereas the meaning really is that the son ran through his own patrimony and repented. We have here a s of predicates for the one subject son, and they should be separated by commas according to the rule for words and phrases in a series, thus: The prodigal son left his home and his father, ran through his patri- mony, and repented when there was nothing else to do. 90. The Comma in Compound Sentences. Conjunctions are UH-t glance serve seems to have two objects, God and //-
science. But when you come to mil, you see that you have


misread. In other words, God and conscience belong in different
groups and should be separated by a comma in order to avoid

(Correct) Serve faithfully your God, and your conscience will bo light.

While not all compound sentences are in danger of being
misunderstood in this way, it has come to be a very general
practice to separate their clauses by commas. The practice
is perfectly logical; we need to indicate the point where one
clause ends and another begins, almost as much as we need
to indicate the end of one sentence and the beginning of an-
other. Yet there are often sentences in which the relation
between short clauses is so close that a comma would be fel'
an intrusion.

I:\AMPLES: (1) I haven't done it and I don't intend to do it.

attitude of mind.)
(2) He pulled and I pushed the car. (Really one act.)

Of course if there are more than two clauses in a compound
sentence and a conjunction is expressed between only the last
two, the clauses are treated exactly like words or phrases in
a series.

EXAMPLE: I reached the ditch, I took one look behind, and then I
made a frantic leap across.

In general this section applies only to compound sentences
in which conjunctions are expressed and the clauses are not
very long and are not broken up within themselves by commas.
When the clauses are not connected by conjunctions, or are
very long and contain commas, a stronger mark of punctua-
tion is needed the semicolon. The uses of the semicolon
will be discussed in Sections 97 and 98, but one example is
inserted here to make the point of this paragraph clear.

EXAMPLE: If I had an automobile, I would make a long journey; I
would drive to California.



Punctuate the following sentences wherever you find punc-
tuation necessary. Look for possible different meanings.

1. The menu offered turtle soup milk toast pineapple ice cream potatoes

salmon halibut steak and mushrooms.
J. He put the liquid in a dirty dark red bottle.

3. They did not undertake the work because money was scarce.

4. I had oatmeal coffee toast and ham and eggs for breakfast.

5. He went to the bank for money was scarce.

6. Day after day I dropped the corn and father covered it.

7. Charles came home from college and Tom returned from the city.

8. Love rules the court the camp the grove
And men below and saints above;

For love is heaven and heaven is love.

9. The rain fell without prophets to the contrary.

10. Let every American every lover of liberty every well wisher to his

posterity swear by the blood of the Revolution never to violate in
the least particular the laws of his country. Lincoln

11. The British soldiers went after Hancock Adams and others.

1'J. We must work for our employer expects this task to be finished by

l.'-J. She is the darling of my heart

And she lives in our alley. Henry Carey

14. Men may come and men may go

But I go on forever. Tennyson

10. Her first efforts were failures: the meat burned the eggs ran together

and she forgot entirely to put baking powder in the biscuits.
Iti. Through the heat of day the chill of evening and even into the slow

cold hours of early morning she watched by the cot.
17. Tru-t when you can but know your man. Adage

Is. I returned for Modest inc pushed her briskly forward and after a sharp

asc nty minutes reached the edge of the plateau

n we were on the high road and surprise seized on my mind as
1 Ix-held a village of some magnitude close :it hand.

"Travels with a Donkey," Stevenson

91. Interruption of the Thought. A well constructed sen-

e has an onward movement like the How of a river. Some-
time, in a stream, we see an eddy in the current, and after a


little the water moves out again on its way. The sentence
current, too, sometimes stops to allow the thought to wander
a little way off the main course, and after a slight pause re-
sumes its onward motion. Such an "eddy" is generally marked
by commas before and after it. There is no such "eddy" in
the following compound sentence; so, except for the comma
between the clauses, it is uninterrupted by punctuation:

The roads were sufficiently dry by noon, and we moved forward with
considerable < Now suppose we break the movement in the first clause to add a bit of information, not necessary to a complete idea, but useful as explanation by the way. This "eddy" we set off by commas, thus: The roads, under the influence of the July sun, were sufficiently dry by noon, < t. Next let us put an "eddy" into the second me-mhrr, and like- wise set it off by commas: .. .. and we moved forward, in spite of our wagon difficulties, with considerable ease. The complete sentence now reads: The roads, under the influence of the July sun, were sufficiently dry by noon, and we moved forward, in spite of our wagon difficul- ties, with considerable ease. Not infrequently the delay comes at the beginning of the sentence ; that is, the flow of thought does not really commence until a kind of preparatory statement has been made. A comma usually follows such an expression. EXAMPLE: In the face of all opposition, he determined to trust his own judgment. Sometimes a complete assertion has been made before the extra thought is added. In such cases a comma usually pre- cedes the added idea. EXAMPLE: We moved forward slowly, the roads being very muddy. PUNCTUATION 121 Failure to set off properly such an added idea may result in ambiguity. EXAMPLE : Stevenson was carried into the house between his wife and his body servant Sosimo losing consciousness at once. At first glance we might read, "Sosimo losing consciousness," etc. Then we see that Sosimo must be separated from losing because the last four words constitute an added phrase telling something more about Stevenson. The added thought, whether at the beginning, in the middle, or at the end, may consist of a single word, a phrase, or a clause. EXAMPLES : (a) He turned around, however, and started back (word). (b) I am sure, on the contrary, that you are wrong (phrase). (c) The case, as / see it, is very plain (clause). Single words such as therefore, nevertheless, indeed, perhaps, also, likewise, too, are not always set off by commas. When the connection is so close and the movement of the sentence so smooth that there is no natural pause in reading, any of these words, and others of similar kind, may be inserted without commas. EXAMPLES: (1) I was therefore late to the meeting. (2) What he says is nevertheless a fact. (3) He was very angry indeed. (4) I was perhaps a little hasty. (5) I also would like to hear him. Notice the difference between the foregoing examples and the following where commas are needed: 1. The truth, therefore, is that he was a traitor. 2. My contention, nevertheless, is well founded. 3. This, indeed, was a stronger position. One type of interruption that is often made the basis of a separate rule occurs when the name of a person or thing ad- ed is in~<-rt-l. Such a naiic "IT by commas. EXAMPLK: 'IVll me, John, P think of tin-. 122 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH Possible ambiguity resulting from a failure to observe this rule is very readily illustrated. Note the difference in meaning between the following sentences: 1. Strike John and I will follow you. 2. Strike, John, and I will follow you. 92. Restrictive and Non-restrictive Expressions. Some- times it is difficult to decide whether an idea is really added is an "eddy" distinct from the main current of the sentem <-, or is necessary tq the meaning. For this reason some study of restrictive and non-restrictive modifiers is necessary. To restrict is to limit, or cut down. For instance, in the sentence, "A dog took the meat," we have a general statement that might apply to any dog. But if we add the adjective wh itc, giving us the sentence, "A white dog took the meat," we greatly limit the idea dog by excluding all dogs of colors other than white. A phrase or a clause, just as truly as a word, may limit or restrict the word it modifies. EXAMPLES: (a) The house with the large front yard is mine (phrase). (b) The house that has the large front yard is mine (clause). These sentences imply that, among several houses that might be mentioned, one particular house with a large front yard is meant. In other words, they restrict the meaning of the word house. Restrictive modifiers are not set off by commas. Now examine the following sentence: My uncle's house, which was built before tfie Civil War, is still in good repair. This sentence, as punctuated, does not imply that my uncle has several houses and that the particular one among them that was built before the Civil War is in good repair. The clause in italics, and between commas, adds an interesting fact about my uncle's house its age. Omit the inserted clause and the sen- tence is still clear, though not so interesting or complete; but omit the restrictive phrase or the restrictive clause in the pre- PUXrn ATIOX 123 ceding examples (a) and (b) and one immediately wonders, "What house?" The sentence seems incomplete without the restrictive phrase or clause. A non-restrictive phrase or clause, then, as its name suggests, does not restrict or limit; on the contrary, it adds to the idea of the word it modifies. And in adding to the idea, the non- restrictive phrase or clause forms an "eddy" that needs to be cut off from the main current by commas. This very important distinction between restrictive^ and non-restrictive applies to many kinds of phrases and clauses. We have had examples of a restrictive adjective phrase and a restrictive and a non-restrictive relative clause. Study also the following sentences: 1. Adjectives and adjective phrases. Restrictive Non-restrictive A damsel dark met me with a The little girl, red and angry, smile. frowned at me. 2. Participles and participial phrases. -trictive Non-restrictive The man waving his hat is my My brother, waving his hat wildly, brother. called to me to hurry. (A particular man is indicated.) 3. Clauses with "where." -trictive Non-restrictive I found a place where we might rest. Galena, where Grant was born, is in tilar place.) northwestern Illinois. (An added detail about Galena.) 1. Clauses with "when." Restrictive Non-restrictive I will come \rhcH I please. \\ nine o'clock, when all ims tinilar timc.j quiit, they began their search. 5. Clauses with "if." t rid ive Non-n\ word Mary, being set off by
comma-, im-n-ly adds the girl's name a relatively unimportant
matter. It is non-restrictive. But in sentence (a), her
daughter Mori/ excludes her daughter Alice, and any other
daughter she may have. That is, if some one asked the


question, "Is either of her daughters married?" the answer
would be, "Yes, her daughter Mary is married." Mary is
here almost an adjective; it restricts the meaning of the word
daughter to her "Mary daughter," not her "Alice daughter."
Being restrictive, it is not set off by commas.

When, then, an appositive has this restrictive relation, or
when a brief appositive is thought of or spoken as purl of
an unbroken phrase with the word it explains (as in the poet
Tennyson, I myself, etc.), commas are not needed. An
appositive noun clause directly 'following the word it explains
is also not usually set off.

EXAMPLE: The fact that I was cold disturbed him very much.

In this case, again, the restrictive rule applies; the clause
clearly restricts the assertion to one particular fact. But the
general rule for appositives remains, that unless there is some
good reason for not setting them off, they are set off by commas.
Study the following sentence carefully; it may not mean
what you think it does.

His wife did not like asparagus or parsnips, and he could not eat
oyster plant or salsify.

How many vegetables are named? Are you sure of your
count? One of the vegetable names is an appositive; salxify
is another name for <;//x/rr plant. Therefore we shall have to set off salsify block it away from the expression with which it is in apposition. His wife did not like asparagus or parsnips, and he could not eat oyster plant, or salsify. Can you be sure, on the first reading, what this sentence means? All came to see John as well as the others. Do you find two possible meanings? Is John the object of see, or is it in apposition with all, the subject of came? In the latter case, a comma before John is plainly needed. Punctuate PUNCTUATION 127 the sentence in this way and there is no possible doubt as to the meaning: All came to see, John as well as the others. 94. Commas at "Both Ends." One general principle, already stated, is so often violated, either through careless- - or through failure to understand it, that it deserves the emphasis of a special section. Every sort of "eddy" that interrupts the flow of the sentence, if it is not at the beginning or the end, requires a comma both before it and after it. If a comma is required before such an interpolated expression, whether it be a word of address, an appositive, a non-restrictive phrase or clause, or any kind of word, phrase, or clause that makes an "eddy," there must also be a comma after it. Viola- tion of this principle is very careless, and may result in ambig- uity. Notice the following examples: (Ambiguous) (Clear) (1) The officer prepared to do his (1) The officer, prepared to do his duty, drew his revolver and duty, drew his revolver and stepped forth. stepped forth. (2) My brother, waving his hat (2) My brother, waving his hat wildly called to me to hurry. wildly, called to me to hurry. Or: My brother, waving his hat, wildly called to me to hurry. 95. Avoiding Ambiguity. In certain emergencies not pre- cisely covered by the foregoing sections, the comma may be needed to prevent misunderstanding or to warn the eye not iin words together. Examine this sentence: rd tlio rich rm-n who have dealings with thorn are always sorvilr but ungrateful. Do you have a sensation of mild distraction as you try to read it'.' When you get to are, you see that something is wnmir. to the end in M-jin-h of a subject for are; then you reread an exasperating process. If you are diligent may discover that rich is not here an adjective modifying 128 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH men, but the noun of a phrase consisting of the first three words. In othei words, rich men is not here a word group, and should be divided because it looks so much like one. Placing a comma after rich corrects the difficulty. Toward the rich, men who have dealings with them are always servile but ungrateful. The following sentences illustrate similar emergencies: 1. In 1911, 895 cases were reported. 2. Toward little l-'red. Brown was almost tender. 3. That Cod is, is true. 4. Months before, \ve had done it. 5. He went to the bank, for money was scarce. In some of t: 68, the expressions thai are set off can be accounted for as "eddies" before or after the main current of the sentence; but the chances of misunderstanding are so obvious that it seems worth while to jiive these as examples of punctuation to avoid ambiguity. 96. Some Conventional Uses of the Comma. (a) A comma is used after /yr.s and n<> within a sentence,
and usually after oh (though oh may be followed by an
exclamation mark). is not usually set off by any mark.

EXAMPLES: (1) Yes, I think I shall go.

(2) Oh, how you startled me!

(3) Oh! I thought you had gone.

(b) A direct quotation of not more than a sentence is
separated by a comma from the words that introduce it.
If the main sentence is resumed after the quotation, a comma
(inside the quotation mark) follows the quoted words unless
the quotation requires some other punctuation mark.


(1) He shouted warningly to the man at tke wheel, "Look out for

the tug!"

(2) I heard him say, "That is all," and then I heard no more.

(3) I heard him ask, "What is the matter?" and then I heard no



A very short quotation a mere word or phrase woven
closely into the structure of the main sentence need not be
off by commas.

EXAMPLE: This is what he called his "house beautiful."

(c) A comma is sometimes used to mark the omission of
words needed for complete grammatical construction, but
readily understood from what precedes.

Kx AMPLE: Fred chose New York; John, Chicago.

There is a decided tendency, however, to abandon this old and
often stated rule whenever there is no obvious awkwardness
or ambiguity if the comma is omitted.

EXAMPLE: One boy chose wealth, another fame, a third friends.


(d) A comma is used in writing dates to separate the name
of the month, or some other time division, from the year; and
in writing addresses, to separate the name of the state or
country from the name of the town or city (and in other cases
of similar nature).

EXAMPLES: (1) It was Christmas, 1917.

(2) January 2, 1918.

(3) He lived in Bloomington, Illinois.


Punctuate the following:

1. Ramonu foil in love with Alessandro the sheep-shearer.

2. '1 little food for the hungry sick or well.

3. In the cellar stops were heard.

4. Attila the "Scourge of God" devastated Europe.

.e authorities did not prohibit the sale of opium or cocaine.

6. The authorities did not prohibit the sale of sodium chloride or table

7. In honor of tin- dead bell- were tolled slowly.

-.Kof the Khyber Rifles.

.'. o inferences possible.)

K). 1 '.lion of these ordinary contracts ure preferable.

]1. Napoleon the world's greatest. Helma an island

off the coast of one of our own continents South America


12. Our forefathers sturdy and industrious founded a great commonwealth.

13. Our greatest inventions the flyin.u; machine the wireless and the electric

light are not yet a generation old.

14. Do you want tea or coffee? (Two meanings.)

15. Blessinus on thee little man

HarH'oot boy with cheek of tan. Whittier

16. I will write your friend Miss Reed today.

17. "Yes" I told him "I fe.-l that way too."

18. Uncle Silas '"lowed" that I was "keerect" hut warned me "You'd

better go slow young man."

19. Suppose your task my little man

Is very hard to get
Will it make it any easier

For you to sit and fret'.' Phoebe Gary


97. In Compound Sentences. The semicolon (;) has been
mentioned (Section 88) as a punctuation mark indicatit
decree of separation between word groups intermediate be-
tween the i-light drirn indicated by the comma, and the
complete separation indicated by the three marks that are
used at the ends of sentences.

\\ e have seen (Section 90) that the parts of a compound sen-
tence, when a connective is used, are frequently separated by
a comma. Often, however, no connective (or conjunction)
i* used. In such a case the two clauses are really two distinct
statements that might be punctuated as separate sentences,
but because of some thought relation between them the writer
prefers to make them a single sentence by using a semicolon.

EXAMPLE: He knows them thoroughly; he has spent months among

When a semicolon is properly used in such a sentence, it is
generally possible to supply a connective; and if a connective
is supplied, the semicolon is usually replaced by a comma.

EXAMPLE: He knows them thoroughly, for he has spent months
among them.

We might state this practice mathematically and our rule


would fit the great majority of cases: One comma plus one
conjunction equals one semicolon.

The student must not get the idea, however, that he can put
any two clauses together and cement them with a semicolon.
A compound sentence, like any other kind of sentence, must be
unified; that is, its parts must be related. If they are not
related, there is no true sentence.

EXAMPLE: Edwin Booth had a great aversion to rehearsals; he was a
relative of the man who shot Lincoln.

Obviously, though both of these statements are about Edwin
Booth, the actor, they have no such relation that they can be
run together with a semicolon as a single sentence.

One of the most common sources of error in students'
composition is the notion that such words as accordingly, con-
sequently, hence, however, indeed, moreover, nevertheless, still, then,
therefore ,1 are connectives of such a nature that they may
introduce a clause after a comma only. All these words, when
introducing a second member of a compound sentence without
some undoubted conjunction such as and, must be preceded by
a semicolon; and even the word so (when equivalent to therefore
or so that) ought to be preceded by a semicolon.


(Incorrect, (Correct)

(1) It was very cold, consequently (1) It was very cold; consequently

I turned up my collar. I turned up my collar.

(2) The niiiht was dark, novcrthe- (2) The night was dark; neverthe-

she was not afraid. less she was not afraid.

(3) I was tired, accordingly I sat (3) I was tired; accordingly I sat

down. down.

1 H< 1,< .ad her cry, then he ran (4) He heard her cry; then he ran to her aid. to her aid. In M-ntcnre four above, the comma would suffice before then if inittcd in the second part ; for the second part would thm be. not an additional complete clause without a conjunc- tion, but merely the second part of a compound predicate. * Compare Section 78. 132 VOCATIONAL FA'dLISH It should be added that, though punctuation with the semi- colon, as in the right-hand column, corrects the errors, it is often best to rewrite sentences of this kind in such a way that they are made complex instead of compound, because it is possible to express the true relations between the parts more accurately and gracefully in complex sentences. Thus the following versions are better than the corresponding sen- it IK <> in the right-hand column on page 131.

1. It was so cold that I turned up my collar.
2. Though the ni^ht \v:is dark, she \v;is not afraid.
3. I was so tired that I sat down to r< 98. Between Word Groups Broken by Commas. Often a .-entence consists of two or more main parts which are thcm- >elves broken up into smaller parts by commas. In such a
it is obviously desirable to distinguish between the smaller
word groups and the larger ones; and the semicolon, as the
mark intermediate between the comma and the period, is
used to set apart the larger groups. In other words, a series
of phrases or clauses of any kind are usually separated by
semicolons if any of the members must be broken up by commas.

MPLF. : If I could save the Union without frooinir any slave, I
would do it; and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves. I would
do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others ai< me. I would also do that. Lincoln The same principle is at the basis of the rule, frequently given, that e. g., i. e., namely, and viz., before a list, are usually preceded by a semicolon. The words after such a semicolon are separated by commas. EXAMPLE: I have three reasons for not going; namely, lack of funds, poor health, and important work. EXERCISE 47 Punctuate the following sentences : 1. We are not slow in our shipments on the contrary we are unusually prompt. 2. The day is cold and dark and dreary It rains and the wind is never weary. Longfellow PrxrTTATION 133 3. He knew the worst would happen he tried to meet it bravely. 1. I Ie knew the worst would happen and he tried to meet it bravely. ">. He had fled as f;ir as he could go accordingly he tried to build up his
courage to face the other way.

6. He knew he should not take the money nevertheless when he fouiu 1 1 he

roll in his pocket he lacked the courage to return it.

7. He thought of what his mother would say then there was another who

might not understand.

8. He reasoned that he ought not to take a chance still men had risked

all and won.

9. The moral side did not impress Tom indeed it may be questioned

whether morals ever concerned him.

10. He had lost his reputation anyway so what was the difference?

11. Xo men living are more worthy to be trusted than those who toil up

from poverty none less inclined to take or touch aught which they

have not earned. Lincoln

\'2. Hi; hope. 1 to join Miller at South Bend there would be sufficient time.

13. He thought the case over between trains "Will it pay?" he asked


1 4. \Yith malice toward none with charity for all with firmness in the right

as God gives us to see the right let us strive to finish the work we are
in to bind up the nation's wounds to care for him who shall have
borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan to do all which
may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves
and with all nations. Lincoln


99. The Colon. The colon (:) was formerly used as a
mark intermediate between the semicolon and the period.

KPLX: It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory: it is sown in
ikni's*: it is raised in pov. / Corinth

have a scries of four clauses without any conjunction-.

The < ,nd clause is clearly more closely related to the first than it is to the third; that i>, the first two clauses make up a

need pair and the third and fourth ;i similarly balanced

The col,n M-parates the pairs. Such UM- of the

generally abandoned at present. The

lid n.\v 1 iiher comma- and a semicolon,

, ,!.



The main uses of the colon at present are: (a) to precede a
list of particulars that is formally introduced; (b) to precede
an extract or quotation of considerable length; and (c) some-
times to precede an illustration or an explanation of a com-
plete statement that has been given.


(a) He took with him the following articles : a camera, a telescope,

and two rifles. (Notice that the colon is not needed if the
list is introduced less formally; e. g., He took with him a
camera, a telescope, and two rifles.)

(b) The Reverend Mr. Smith said: (Then follows a long quotation.)

(c) His tongue, indeed, was a magic instrument: sometimes it

rumbled like the thunder; sometimes it warbled like the
sweetest music. (Notice that the last two clauses develop
or explain the first one.)

Examine the following sentence carefully:

Our young men in the cities are living too rapidly: ot fifteen, when
they should be abashed before girls, they are social lions; at twenty,
when they should yet believe in the rewards of virtue, they have
adopted the theory of success by "pull"; at thirty they are pre-
maturely cynical.

Notice that we have four main clauses, but they are not of
equal value. The last three are given for the purpose of ex-
plaining and illustrating the first one. A colon follows the
first clause; semicolons separate the others. The relation of
the first clause to the other three is very much like that of a
father to his three sons.

The colon has also various purely conventional uses, of
which the most important are as follows:

1. After the salutation in a letter.

EXAMPLE : Dear Sir :

2. Between chapter and verse in Scripture references.
EXAMPLE: Matt. 4: 8-16.

3. In indicating time.
EXAMPLE : 4 :35 p.m.



Punctuate the following:

1. The spirit of the American people is little understood abroad Europeans
generally believe that we put the dollar above morals and happiness
or even mercy they believe that American demeanor while brilliant
in ingenuity is uncomfortably tricky.

J. The lawyer lectured on the following topics transfer of interests in lands
cont le conveyances wills descent to heirs landlord and tenant

the lease defects and repairs subletting rent remedies for non-payment
termination of the lease.

3. There are three simple tenses present past and future in English.

4. Kindly send us the following goods three copies of Lamb's Tales from

Shakspere twelve copies of Ivanhoe one copy of Silas Marner.
"-. Alphabets ancient Egyptian early Phoenician Greek Chinese English.
t>. Matthew 68. 7 30 a.m. My dear Jones


100. For Sudden Breaks or Interruptions. We have seen
(Section 91) how slight interruptions of the forward movement
of the sentence are marked by commas. Sometimes there are
interruptions that cannot be called "slight," but which turn
the current of the sentence sharply away from its former
direction. For sudden breaks of this kind, as well as a few
other uses to be discussed in the next section, the dash ( ) has
been adopted as a useful mark. Proper uses of the dash may
best l>e indicated by examples.

(a) Abrupt change in construction, leaving the first part
of the sentence incomplete.

MPLE: I want to tell you but that wouldn't be fair.

(b) A break for the purpose of repeating or varying an
expression for emphasis.

A c :irc tired yes, more than tired of your delay.
Do we can we hope to succeed in such an undertaking

(<) An unexpected turn of thought. Ho was always anxious to pay fas debts when he had no money. 136 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH The dash is also very much used to set off parenthetical expressions that are independent, both grammatically and in idea, of the main assertion; in other words, expressions that are decidedly more than "slight" interruptions of the course of the sentence. KXAMPLK: I wanted to tell you but I must not detain you long that I appreciate your careful work. 1 11 such sentences either dashes or marks of parenthesis () may be used, but dashes seem less formal and are now often pre- ferred to parentheses. 101. Other Uses of the Dash. The dash is a convenient mark to set oil a series of appositives that have to be separated from one another by commas. If commas were used to set off the whole scries, as well as between the items of the series, it might l>e difficult to distinguish the relations. Examine the
following .sentence:

He sold photographic chemicals, sulphite of soda, metol, and potassium

.Just how many things did he sell? You will want to know
immediately whether the last three items in the list are, or are
not, photographic chemicals. If they are photographic chemi-
caU, the fact should be made clear by a dash, instead of a
-omina. after chemicals. If they are not photographic chemi-
cals, the comma is sufficient. Examine also the following
examples of this use of the dash :*

(1) He had to buy three books a geography, ;i history, and a grammar.

(2) Hingling Brothers displayed various animals of North America

buffaloes, mountain lions, panthers, lynxes, and antelopes.

Occasionally a single appositive may be set off by a dash
(or dashes) instead of a comma or commas, when there is a
feeling of unusual abruptness in turning to the explanation.

EXAMPLES: (1) He gave it to the boss Murphy.

(2) Efficiency that much overworked word is now
heard even in our churches.

'These are cases in which colons might also be used, according to Section 99.


In a long sentence beginning with a series of phrases or
clauses and ending with a summarizing statement, a dash is
often used before the summarizing statement. The dash in this
use is comparable to the line one draws under a column of
figures preparatory to writing down the sum.

EXAMPLE: That he might enjoy health, that he should have enough
money for the necessities of life, that he might enjoy friends these
were the life desires of Stevenson.

A similar use may occur even in a short sentence.

EXAMPLE: Money, position, reputation all seemed worthless now.

There are also various mechanical uses of the dash which
may be illustrated as follows:

1. My friend B

2. "The rank is but the guinea's stamp." Burns

3. During the years 1914-18.

4. pp. 28-30.

."). May-July.

Notice that in 3, 4, and o a shorter mark, called technically
the tn-tlnxh, is used; the longer mark of 1 and 2 is the em-
ilnxti and is the one used ordinarily in sentences.

One caution as to the dash is important. It used to be
i rather extreme and sensational mark of punctua-
tion, because of the abruptness or suddenness that it implied,
and careful writers u-ed it sparingly. It lias, however, grown
in favor. and there is now no objection to it where it really serves
any of the purpose^ that have explained in this and the pre-
ceding section. Hut the dash is not an indiscriminate substitute
for the comma, the semicolon, or the colon, to be. used because
OIK- i- not Blire xactly which .f these other marks would lie

: it is a mark with distinctive characteristics of its own. and
the chief thing to remember about it is that it usually indi< 'nipt or sudden turn of sume kind, in thought or construc- tion. 138 VOCATIONAL KNdLISH Typewriters are not often equipped with both a hyphen and a dash; it is necessary to use the same character for these very different marks. In such a case stenographers should be care- ful to distinguish in some clear way. The hyphen, used between the parts of some compound words and at the end of the line when it is necessary to divide a word, should not be separated by any space from the preceding or following letters. But when the hyphen sign on a typewriter is to be interpreted as a dash, it must be separated from adjacent words by space both before and after it; or it may be struck twice to make it evident that a dash is meant. EXERCISE 49 Punctuate the following sentences: 1. The business of the administration should he in the hands of adminis- trative officers superintendent a. istant superintendents and principals. 2. I was not a fellow-being of these explorers I was a curiosity I was a specimen. Lou-ill 3. These discoveries gunpowder and the compass opened a new world to a new idea democracy. 4. If the president refuse which God forbid we shall be lost. fj. "I thought you came from Oxford," I returned. "Not 1" said Sn-er- forth "I have been seafaring better employed." "David Copperfield,'' Dickens 6. I was going by Tom's yesterday when but that's another story. 7. They are good they are bad they are weak they are strong \Yise foolish so am I. Sam Wait' 8 Say not Good Night but in some brighter clime Bid me Good Morning. Anna L. Barbauld 9. You will sell this toy the kind the children cry for Structo. 10. It has the Rotex shutter that's all you need to know. 11. He was always looking for work for his wife. (How does a dash after work affect the meaning?) 102. Classification by Punctuation. The four internal marks of punctuation that we have been discussing comma, semi- colon, colon, and dash can be used very effectively to show a PUNCTUATION 139 -malic arrangement of topics. Doubtless the following systems of classification are familiar to students: [corn (2) Products of Illinois cereal < wheat (a) cereal [oats 1. corn 2. wheat 3. oats Products (1) of Illinois mineral coal lead (b) mineral 1. coal 2. lead (c) dairy (milk 1. milk dairy < butter 2. butter [cheese 3. cheese Sometimes it is not convenient to take the space required by such tabulation. In such a case the relations may be indicated almost as effectively by punctuation as follows: (3) Products of Illinois: cereal corn, wheat, oats; mineral coal, lead; dairy milk, butter, cheese. It is worth while to study this arrangement carefully and note the uses that are illustrated. The colon after Illinois is a colon preceding a list. The dashes after cereal, mineral, and dairy are dashes preceding groups of appositives, or subordinate list s. Colons in place of the dashes would be confusing because of the colon preceding the main list. The commas separate words in a series. The semicolons separate groups of words that are subdivided by commas. USES OF PARENTHESES 103. For Parenthetical Expressions. The parenthetical ex- kind of f/.W<- in writing, a statement not directly in the current of thought. -n-i.i.: That fall Jeremiah Courtney (he lias since died) enter- tained all the country-side. iitli-tii-;d ' M are oftm enclosed by dashes (Section 100 or by OOmmafl Section IM). Such use of commas i 10 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH is mainly confined to short expressions not far out of the course of thought. The choice between dashes and parentheses for longer and more marked interruptions is largely a matter of personal taste. Appositives and other bits of explanation a in- frequently set off by parentheses, as for example the references to sections in this book. Note also the following uses: (1) In one of your letters (May 24, 1911) you state .... (2) The Tussock larva (caterpillar) is about an inch and a ha)- long. (3) The rifle (the one father told you about last night) has been in our family for a hundred years. Parentheses are also used to enclose figures or letters in an enumeration of items run into a text. EXAMPLE: There are two main reasons for this condition: (a) his l>overty, (b) his youth.

Note that no other mark of punctuation follows the enclosed
letter or figure.

Pupils are sometimes told to enclose in parentheses words
that they wish to cancel. This is an entirely wronu; practice,
however, and likely to mislead the reader. Parentheses have

no cancelinii power.


104. Used Mainly in Printing. Brackets, which are right-
angled [] as distinguished from the curved parentheses, are
not common except in technical work, and are more likely to
le seen in printing than in writing. The main uses of brackets
are as follows:

(1) To enclose an explanation or note, as by an editor.

(2) To set off words inserted in a quotation for the purpose
of explaining something that is not clear from the quotation
alone, or for the purpose of correcting an error.

(3) To enclose a parenthesis within a parenthesis. For this
purpose, however, parentheses within dashes may also be used.


Such an involved construction is awkward and should generally
be avoided.


(1) "I was assisted in my work by Frederick Aiken, whose service
was very much appreciated." [Mr. Aiken represented

The Sun in Mexico during the occupation of Veru (Yu/..
The Editor.}

(2) "He [the President] asserted that such action was [unjneces-


Brackets are like parentheses in having no canceling power.


105. Direct Quotation. When the exact words of a eharac-
ter in a story, or of any person other than the writer of the
particular composition in hand, are run into the text, they
should begin and end with quotation marks (" ").


(1) "Do you expect me to go alone?" she said to Maloney.

(2) We must agree with the immortal words of Keals, "A thing

of beauty is a joy forever."

If a direct quotation continues through more than one
paragraph, it is customary to place a quotation mark at the
beginning of each paragraph, so that the eye will the more
readily rerogni/e that the quotation continues; but the quota-
tion mark for the end does iml occur until the whole quotation

Notic<- that the abbreviation etc., to indicate that only part of .'i Ifi quoted, belongs outside the quotation mark-. (Incorrect) '. i the familiar prov He quoted tlie familiar proverb, "A p.: "A rolling stone," violation should be carefully di>tiiiguished from

!!. Indirect quotation merely slates the sub-

<-e of a n-Muirk, without giving his ' word-, and i- not endowed in quotation marks. Thu< the 142 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH first example in this section may be changed to indirect quota- tion as follows: She asked Maloney if he expected her to go alone. A quotation within a quotation is usually indicated by single marks (' '). If still another quotation occurs within the inner quotation, the double marks are used again. Cases like this last are rare and awkward, but the single marks for quotation within quotation are common. EXAMPLE : The speaker continued : "Burns's poetry is as applicable today as it was a century ago. 'A man's a man for a' that' preaches the always needed gospel of democracy." In printing, an extract that is set off by itself in different type from that of the body of the text is usually not put in quotation marks. This book contains many examples of this practice. 106. Other Uses of Quotation Marks. Among various special uses of quotation marks the following are worth illustration: (a) To enclose titles of books, articles, poems, pictures and other works of art. EXAMPLES: (1) Dickens's "A Tale of Two Cities." (2) Hall's article in the Atlantic Monthly on "Kitch- ener's Mob." (3) Keats's "Ode to a Nightingale." (4) Rubens's "Descent from the Cross." In printed matter, however, the titles of books often occur in italics, unquoted; and therefore in manuscript they may be underlined and unquoted. Notice that the authors' or artists' names are not part of the quotation. Students are often careless in failing to put within the quotation an article that belongs at the beginning e. g., the A at the beginning of "A Tale of Two Cities" in example (1) above. Anything that is quoted at all should be quoted accurately. PUNCTUATION 143 (b) Unusual expressions of such a character that the writer wishes to indicate his recognition of the fact that they do not belong to the standard English vocabulary are put in quota- tion marks. Slang, technical words, words used ironically or in some special sense, are included in this class. EXAMPLES: (1) His clothes were somewhat "ratty." (2) He vfas elected "master of the rolls." (c) Names of ships, trains, etc., are often quoted; or they may be printed in italics. EXAMPLES: The "Oriental Limited" makes connection with "The Empress of Japan" at Seattle. The Oriental Limited makes connection with The Empress of Japan at Seattle. (d) Words or phrases to which particular attention is directed, as for the purpose of definition or because they are spoken of as words merely, may be either quoted or printed in italics (as often in this book). EXAMPLES: The word "sanguine" is related to "sanguinary," but differs much from it in meaning. The word sanguine is related to sanguinary, but differs much from it in meaning. There is some reason for holding to the use of quotation marks for what is actually quoted, and using italics mainly for emph 107. Other Marks in Connection with Quotations. The position of other punctuation marks in relation to the quota- tion marks at the end of quotations often causes trouble, but can \>c simplified under two general rules:

(a) A period, or a comma, always precedes the quotation
mark at the end of a quotation.

\MI-LES: (1) "All. AgDtt," I s.-iid, "I have always known it."
(2) "I cannot," he said, "go this month."

This rule is probably due largely to considerations of appear-


(b) Other marks semicolon, colon, exclamation mark,
question mark, dash, etc. go outside the quotation unless they
plainly belong to the quoted words.


(1) The following instruction is given under the head of "Business

Correspondence": When a firm is the addressee, the salu-
tatory phrase should be "Gentlemen:" or "Dear Sire:"
"A Manual for Writers," Manly and Powell

(2) "Good!" he cried.

(3) Do you know the name of the author of "The Solitary



108. Special Uses. The ordinary use of the period at the

end of declarative and imperative sentences has been mentioned

lion 86) as being too well known to require special attention.

(a) A period is also used after all abbreviations.

I. \\.MTI.I-: Mr. etc. e.g. pp. A.D.

Formerly a period was used after Roman numerals, but this
practice is now generally abandoned.

KxAMi'i.i s: Vol. IV When Charles II was King of Knglaim

(b) A row of dots or periods, technically called <7///w,s. indicates omission of a portion of a quotation that is not essen- tial to one's purpose in quoting. In a prose passage four dots are most commonly used, but when a whole line or more is omitted from a poetical quotation a line of dots is usually made. EXAMPLES: "In the height of his good humor .... he found his pocket was picked." Addistm "Breathes there the man, with soul so dead, Who never to himself hath said, This is my own, my native land! If such there breathe, go, mark him well." USES OF THE EXCLAMATION MARK 109. The Exclamation Mark (!) is used after exclamatory sentences ; after imperative sentences by which it is intended to PUNCTUATION 145 express a particularly strong or urgent command; often after interjections; and sometimes to indicate irony. K\ VMPLES: (1) What :i piece of work is a man! Shaksperc (2) Hurry! hurry! hurry! (3) Alas! I found that he was gone. (4) Brutus is an honorable man ! Shakspcre USES OF THE QUESTION MARK 110. The Question Mark has only two common uses: (a) At the end of a direct question (but not an indirect Question). EXAMPLES: (Question mark) (No question mark) (1) Are you angry? (1) He asked me whether I was angry. J) Where does your brother live? (2) He asked me where my brother lives. (h) To express a doubt. EXAMPLE: He says he is a member of a noble (?) English family. is rare and generally undesirable. EXERCISE 5O Punctuate the following wherever necessary. 1. Through the influence of his father he got the job. J. The army moved forward rapidly having previously mapped the country. i he army moved forward rapidly over a previously mapped country. ; i-:. N>. '2 will require a comma. No. 3 will not. In No. 12 the
participial phr.'tse is equivalent to a clause; i. p., the sentence, while
it must he called simple, is in effect complex, being almost, equiva-
lent to the complex sentence, "The army moved forward rapidly,
for the country had been previously mapped.")

I. That that that is not is not.

.">. Kvery one loved Agnes for she had the rare virtue of loving every one.

i. r.very one lov 'i had a way of friendship with acquair'

and Mr..' nd poor.

f the minutes and the hours will care for themseh

v i- r came out of one door in others out of the

otL. out for clauses with "understood" woi

9. All p ' April 1 will benefit by the rate**


10. The man who makes no mistakes never makes anything else.

11. The clerk who was late :il\v:iys had to pay a fine.

12. The clerk who was late explained that a wreck had delayed her car.

13. Intelligent care should be given children who have bad colds most

dise: ses start that way.
1!. fa) Mr. Jones of Buffalo is visiting here this week.

(b) Mr. Jones of Buffalo [not the Detroit man] is visit in"; hero this

15. Charles Carroll of Carrollton wrote our Revolutionary patriot in

reply to the statement that since there were other Charles Carrolls
the king would not know which to hang.

16. There are several primary requirements for a military officer first he

must be a man of commanding appearance second he must under-
stand the wants of men third he must be well educated.

17. In your letter June 16 you- ask a for information b for instruction.

Have you our new instruction sheet Bulletin No. 3? You will find
instruction therein enough to keep you busy a week.

18. How can he expect me to bring the books he asked Harry when I

can't even get into the house.
10. Woman without her man would be a savage.

20. The schoolmaster says the mayor is a donkey.

21. A horse a horse my kingdom for a horse. Richard Hi
L'J. But she is in her grave and oh

The difference to me. Wordworth

23. How are the mighty fallen. II Sonmt-l


Punctuate the following sentences:

1. The voices of the Present say come

But the voices of the Past say wait Longfellmr

2. Quoth David to Daniel Why is it these scholars

Abuse one another whenever they speak
Quoth Daniel to David It naturally f oilers

' Folks come to hard words if they meddle with Greek Saxe

3. One reason why I'm now so scared

Pardon the weakness pray
Is that I'm thinking all the while
Of me what will they say

4. O earth so full of dreary noises

O men with wailing in your voices

O delved gold the wailers heap
O strife O curse that o'er it fall
God strikes a silence through you all

And giveth His beloved sleep Mrs. Browning


5. At this critical moment a fresh comely woman pressed through the
throng to get a peep at the gray bearded man. She had a chubby
child in her arms which frightened at his looks began to cry. Hush
Rip cried she hush you little fool the old man won't hurt you.

The name of the child the air of the mother the tone of her voice all
awakened a train of recollections in his mind. What is your name
my good woman asked he.

Judith Gardenier.

And your father's name

Ah poor man Rip Van Winkle was his name but it's twenty years since
he went away from home with his gun and never has been heard of
since his dog came home without him but whether he shot himsdf
or was carried away by the Indians nobody can tell. I was then
but a little girl.

Rip had but one question more to ask and he put it with a faltering

Where's your mother

Oh she too had died but a short time since she broke a blood vessel in a
fit of passion at a New England peddler.


Punctuate the following passages, giving reasons :

1. There is one great amalgamating principle influencing Jew and Gentile

Catholic and Protestant Christian and Mohammedan the Golden
Rule Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

2. There is a deal of vile nonsense talked upon both sides of the matter

tearing divines reducing life to the dimensions of a mere funeral pro-
cession so short as to be hardly decent and melancholy unbelievers
yearning for the tomb as if it were a world too far away. Stevenson
:;. Hoy worth looked at the load sadly suddenly as if he feared to test his
resolution he began unloading overcoat extra shoes extra underwear
until at l:u-t were left one suit of underwear one wool shirt one pair of
socks these to last him three months
4. The angels not half so happy in heaven
Went envying her and me

the reason as all men know
In this kingdom by the sea
That the wind came out of the cloud by night

Chilling and killing my Annabel Lee. "Annabel Lee," Poe

:,. I.- - il-lender money in payment of private debts consists of any gold

ruin silver dollars I'm' /reenbacks") ami Tinted

:easury n- -' amount silver coins to the

int of ten dollars nick*-! and copper coins to the amount of


twenty-five cents gold and silver certificates :iml national bank notes
are not legal-tender money but are ordinarily received in payment
of debts without objection Huff cut


1. What do you understand by word jrroups within a sentence'.'
'_'. What are the three marks of punctuation used to indicate <; of separation? 3. Why is it necessary to separate words in seri' \. Why is it, proper to use a comma in addition to and near the end rieB? 5. Why should an "eddy" or a parenthetical word irroup be set olf by punctuation? '). What is meant, by restrictive and non-restrictive expre- lllustrate. Which are set off by commas? 7. Are all appositives set apart by punctuation? Explain. 8. Explain this statement: A comma plus a conjunction equals a semicolon? '.. How many uses of the dash are listed in the text? 10. What marl. 1. and in what order, for purposes of fic.-itional tabulation? CHAPTER IX HOW WORDS ARE MADE 111. Word Families. Throughout our lives we are learn- ing new words we must if we would keep pace with the, times. The broader the vocabulary of which we are masters, the better fitted we shall be for opportunities that arise. In increasing our knowledge of words, we shall be greatly aided by remember- ing that they, like people, are often associated in families. When one nueets a stranger named Brown in a foreign city he is ordinarily not much impressed. However, if he learns that t he man is a brother of his neighbor Brown at home, his interest is at once aroused. When one sees in the word petroleum the same root (petro, rock) that he meets in salt petre (potassium nitrate, used in the manufacture of gunpowder) and in petrify, the relationship makes an impression, which is again made much deeper when he meets petrography (graphy, to write), the art of writing on stone, or petrary, an ancient war engine for hurling stones. He may continue if he wishes and learn that the given name Peter means rock, and that the stormy petrel was so named because it was believed that it can walk upon the sea as did the Apostle Peter. It is interesting to note changes in meaning within a family of words. Most people know that sanguine means hopeful, ardent, confident : the root syllable sang means blood, and the wrd nets its meaning from the optimism of full-blooded, healthy people. But on the other hand, sanguinary means bloody, murderous, cruel; wimj-froirf (froid is related to frujitl \ 08 coolness, indifference, freedom from excitement; and relationship by blood. It is, <.f course, not possible to analyze and associate all thr word- in the language. Many of the mom common words return- no analysis, and ,-ome arc not formed along logical lines. However, ihe rootfl of many of our words, derivatives from tl and ( rreek, may be .! iii do/en-.- of different com- II'.' 150 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH binations, and thus the learning of many words may depend upon knowing the meaning of one syllable. 112. Plan of the Following Exercises. It is not desirable in this small book to analyze completely a great multitude of words. Scierttific analysis of our vocabulary belongs to the field of philology, a difficult science; but a knowledge of some of the more common word elements will be useful. The follow- ing series of exercises is intended to give the student some skill in guessing at the meaning of strange words through a knowl- edge of the principal roots in common use, thereby making him less dependent on the dictionary and at the same time giving him considerable increase in reading power. EXERCISE 53 Bring to class two words employing each of the common prefixes listed below. Be able to define the words. 1. a - ab - abs, away from. 22. mis, bad, ill. 2. ad l, to.. 23. mono, one. 3. ante, before. 24. non 1, not. 4. anti, against. 25. ob l, against. 5. bi, twice. 26. omni, nil. 6. cata, down. 27. per, through. 7. circum, around. 28. peri, around. 8. contro - contra, against. 29. poly, many. 9. co - con 1, with. 30. post, after. 10. de - di, down, away. 31. pre, before. 11. dia, thru. 32. pro, forward, for. 12. dis 1, apart. 33. re - red, again, back. 13. epi, upon. 34. retro, backward. 14. e - ex l, out, forth. 35. se - sed, away from. 15. eu, good. 36. semi, half. 16. extra, beyond. 37. sub 1, under. 17. in - en, in, into. 38. super, over. 18. in - un l, not, contrary to. 39. syn, with, up. 19. inter, between. 40. trans, across. 20. intra - intro, among. 41. ultra, beyond. 21. mal, bad. 42. uni, one. For ease of pronunciation, the last letter of a prefix often changes either to the first letter of the root syllable (thus in-legible bocomes illegible) or to a letter easily pro- nounced with the next syllable (thus in-possible becomes impossible). In this manner the prefix con, for example, may become com, co, cog, cor, col; and other prefixes are varied in like manner. HOW AYOKDS ARK M'ADK 151 EXERCISE 54 Bring to class two words employing each of the common suffixes listed In-low. 1 Be able to define the words. 1. able (ible). lf>. /oW.

29. kin.

2. al (eal, ial).

16. /er,


15. chron,




16. cor (d),




17. cor on,




18. corp,


7. aur,


19. cred,




20. curr,


9. brev,


21. demo,


10. cap (it),


22. tltnt,



23. dirt


. cess,

give, move

24. dun,


nnpOMtblc to give the moaning* of these nuffixos afl the. meaning* of tho ;
have been ^ his reaaon .- BO0Dtrmto the aUentiOQ

oo the rooU and the prefixes.




25. dorm,


38. gram,


26. due (0,


39. graph,


27. fac,


40. gnil,


28. fact, fie,


41. hydro,


29. fer,

carry, bear



30. fid,


43. jud(ic},


31. fin,


44. jnnrt,




45. jur,


rag, fract,


46. krat, crat,


31. /'/(/(t),


47.. lat,


35. (/e,


48. linyu,




49. Zi'ter,


37. grad, great,


50. lith,



.">!. Inc,


63. mint.


.")2. loqu,


(I. untnn,

one, alone

">:;. mtigna,


i."). uiort,


~}\. tun nit,


(id. mot, mob,




>7. tioni(en),

5i. water,


68. nund,


57. ?//


O'.t. i-r///,


i ///,


70. jmrt,


5<). mere, pay 71. pn/rr, father i<). meter, measure 72. ped, foot til. //. iihittn.


89. ty'/<>\


77. pip, pict,


( .M). r/;/ /-, gutr,


78. pZoc,


91. quiesc,

(juiet, rest

79. pZen,


92. ra//,


80. pZic,

ply, fold

93. radi,


81. polis,

city, citadel

94. re#, red,


82. port,


95. rupt,


83. port,


96. sacr,


84. posiJ, pose,


97. saZ,


85. poten/,


98. sanct,


86. prim,


99. sa(0,


87. pund,


100. scend,





101. 80,




103. secut, sequ,


104. sen,




m\. .ist.




108. sped, spic,


109. spir.


110. stell.


111. struct,


111*, surg,


113. tang, tact.


Hi. teg, tect,


Ho. tel,


116. temp,

117. tens, tent,

118. terra,

119. tors, tort,

120. typ,

121. vad,

122. ven(f),

123. ver,

124. vert,

125. end, ins,

126. viv,

127. voc,

128. volo,

129. w>Z
















What do the words mean in the following series of exercises
6 1 inclusive)? Do not use the dictionary, but refer to the
list s of roots on the preceding pages. Your problem is to arrive
at a meaning for each word through the syllables.

prima facie













































terra firma





in loco parentis

















Vera Cruz





















































tern pus fugit




















vivisection (sect - cut)





requiescat in









viz. (videlicit; the z


is from an old char-


acter used as a sign


of abbreviation)









































post mortem
















































dormer (window)












Corpus Christi











per annum



A.I) mm) domini)















113. The Use of the Dictionary. The foregoing exercise?
should not give the student the impression that he can get along
without the dictionary. On the contrary, he will often need
to verify his guessing, and he will profit by much study of the
dictionary. But there are wrong ways to use the dictionary
even when the searcher is diligent. The best possible use is
that which will make further reference less necessary. The
mere act of looking up a word is very often unprofitable.

A little study of a word, however, will almost always yield
a, rich return. The pupil should, first of all, look for the origin
of the word. Next he should examine other words before and
after to see if there are others from the same root, and last he
should note carefully the meaning of the word, the meanings
of words of the same family, and the use of these words in tin-
illustrative sentences given. As he closes the dictionary he
>hould form a little unspoken -cntrnce or sentence element
employing his newly acquired knowledge. This entire pro<-< will hardly increase the time required to examine a word by ten per cent, but it will generally increase his power to use the word by several hundred per cent. For example, suppose the word is salvage. In Web- Internaliondl Dictionary (quoted only in part), he will find the following: salvage, (Lhtinj salvare, see save) 1. The act of saving a vessel, goods, or life from perils of the sea. Near the word salvage are these words: salvable capable of being saved. salvability quality of being salvable. salvation the act of saving; deliverance from destruction. salvatory a place where things are preserved. salve (sal've) hail (God save you). There are several other words from this root, not to mention save and safe. After the pupil has given a few seconds to the study of this group of words, he will probably be able to work out the meaning of the legal phrase salvo jure (jure law, jury), HOW WORDS ARE MADE 157 the right of being safe, without further use of the dictionary. Few people know the good things to be found in the diction- ary. Frequently people go to the trouble of writing questions to magazines and newspapers which could easily be answered by reference 4 to any good dictionary. EXERCISE 65 I'sing an unabridged dictionary only, answer the following questions: 1. Who was Arachne (fiction)? Barkis ("Barkis is willm' ")? 2. What is the population of Rutland, Vermont? What and where is Cremona? Tara? 4. Who was Jane CJroy? What do you know about her? .">. I low do y<>u pronounce Zahadaias? (From the Bible.)

6. How do you pronounce Pisistratus? (Greek history.)

7. What is the meaning of the name Richard? Of Huldah?

s. What is the meaning of ad interim? Of Honi soil qui mat y pense?
9. Of what is F. R. C. P. E. an abbreviation?


It is not uncommon to find st IK lent s who cannot alphabetize
with accuracy. This exercise is to correct that fault.

Bring to class slips of paper about one inch by two inches.
From a list of the members of the class which the teacher
>hould have on the board, copy one name on each slip, in the
order of the names on the board. At a signal begin to arrange
the surnames in alphabetical order. An error in the spelling
f a name will disqualify a contestant.

Prepare thirty slips and on each copy a word from a single
of a dictionary. Shake the slips vigorously and then
alphabetize them.


1.1: umes come mit of the words which can l>e ana-

woid formation an aid to sjK-llm^'.'
niiid ' word which you need


4. Can you explain how in-legal became illegal? How in-pious became

5. What is the most profitable method of using the dictionary?

6. How do some men gain mastery over a great vocabulary?



114. Rules for Capitalization. Pupils entering high schools
assumed to be familiar with the main rules as to the use

of capitals that a sentence must begin with a capital, for
nple: that within a sentence proper nouns and proper

adjectives begin with capitals, etc. For review and reference,

however, the more important rules of capitalization are summed

up below.

1. Capitalize the first word of every sentence. But do not
capitalize the first word after a semicolon. The first word
after a colon, however, is capitalized if a complete sentence or
series of sentences follows, and if the colon accompanies, or is
equivalent to, some such expression as as follows.

MPLE: My reasons wore these: The road was badly paved; my
car was light and not in good repair; there was a better road a few
miles to the south.

2. Capitalize the first word of every line of poetry.

3. Capitalize the first word of every direct quotation that
consists of one or more sentences and is formally introduced.

MPLK: We very distinctly heard the doctor say, "You are unfair."

But do not capitalize a quoted word, phrase, or dependent
clause that is worked closely into the structure of a sentence.

s: Abigail thought it was a good "idear."

They learned that "honesty is the best policy."

1. In the statement of formal resolutions or propositions
for debate, capitalize the first word after Resolved or Whereas.

.:I-I.K: Ke.-olvi-d, Tli:it the American government should t:ike
steps to acquire ownership of the coal lands.

5. Capital i/e 7 and O when they are used as words. But
oh, unless at the beirinniim .f a sentence, i^ not capitalized.



6. Capitalize proper nouns and adjectives derived from them.
EXAMPLES: America, American; Elizabeth, Elizabethan.

This rule seems very simple and is generally understood; but
practical difficulties often arise as to just what words are proper
nouns, and which words require capitals in proper names con-
sisting of two or more words. Attention is therefore called to
the following specific cases:

(a) Capitalize all names for the Supreme Being; for the
Bible and other sacred books and for the books of the Bible;
for church functions.

K\ AMPLES: The Almighty, the Savior; the Scriptures; Easter.

(b) Capitalize the names of the days and the months, but
not of the seasons.

KxAMi'i i:s: Thursday, August, spring.

(c) Capitalize East, West, North, South, etc., when they
mean peoples or sections of the country, but not when they
mean directions points of the compass.

EXAMPLES: I have always lived in the West.

I saw a dark cloud coming from the west.

(d) Names of studies are not ordinarily capitalized, except
the proper names of languages.

K.\ AMPLES: arithmetic, Latin.

(e) The name.s of personified qualities or things or animals
are usually capitalized.

EXAMPLE : Thus Nature was his kind teacher.

(f) Capitalize le, la, de, du, in French names, when no
title or Christian name precedes them; but do not capitalize
them when a title or given name precedes.

EXAMPLES: De Bracy, Front de Boeuf.

(g) Always capitalize Van in Dutch names; never capitalize
von in German names.

EXAMPLES: Van Houghton, von Bismarck.


It should be remembered, however, that one sometimes writes
his name in a manner contrary to the general rule. Anybody
addresMni;- such a person should be very careful to write the
name as ho writes it, regardless of the rule.

(h) Words that are primarily common nouns are often
capitalized when made parts of proper names. The distinc-
tions in usage brought out below should be very carefully

A Chicago high school (not a proper name), but the Hyde Park

Ili.^h School (the name of a particular school).
Pennsylvania mountains (not a proper naine), but the Allegheny


An Illinois canal, but the Illinois-Michigan Canal.
A party of scouts, hut the Boy Scouts (name of an organization).

(i) Capitalize the first word and all the longer and more
important words in titles of books, pictures, etc. This means
that usually nouns, adjectives (but not articles except at the

nning), pronouns, verbs, and adverbs are capitalized; but
not prepositions or conjunctions unless they are very long. 1

EXAMPLES: Tho Mark of the Beast
Life's Little Ironies
As You Like It
Prue and I

7. As a general rule, capitalize the abbreviations of proper
names; do not capitalize abbreviations of words that would
not be capitalized.

: Illinois 111.; Principal (as a title) Prin.; quart qt.;

(.indie-power c.p.

There are some special cases, however. Thus abbreviation-
of titles arc regularly capitalized even if the title may be used
as a common noun.

KXAMI-LK. Ph. I).; but "He is a doctor of philosophy."'

rg it haa b< -nary in library catalogues and wit! to u*e capitals in th<- tnli-x :' hooka, except, of course, for the first \\ Wigga of the cabbage patch. 'A title in connection with a name, however, is capitalised; e. g., Doctor CovlUr. 162 VOCATIONAL ENCJL1SII Note also that the following abbreviations are capitalized, although the full forms employ small letters: P. O., post office; N. B., nota bene (note well); O. K., all' correct; P. M., post master; C. O. D., cash on delivery. In general, abbreviations should be sparingly used except in technical work in which it is sometimes desirable to use them for the purpose of saving space and time. In writing of any literary quality, abbreviations are hardly at all used, extvpt a few like etc., viz., i. e., e. g., a. m., p. m., A. D., B. C. Students will be wise to make very sure of the propriety of any use of abbreviations they are tempted to make, judging by the custom of the best authorities in the particular kind of writing they are doing. EXERCISE 07 Write the following, with whatever capitals are necessary: indi:m gods m. de la salle redeemer (deity) i.e. ii>h

van sycklc pt. pullmun

Illinois river f.o.b. south pole

mother p.p. russian empire

my mother pp. empire of russia

god e.g. the post office

autumn tex. a true democrat

in the south etc. englowood high school

\\ednesday co. high schools of chi'

"you win" he said b/s. forty-fourth st.

negro b/e. master of arts

last d:iys of pompeii o d (five hundred)

an ohio river acct. book IV

whereas our friend jr. yours truly

gypsy bbl. civilization

von moltke god's mammon

115. Division of Words. Years ago, at the "three R's"
period of education, spelling by syllable was very common.
It was not unusual for oral spellers to pronounce, then spell,
each syllable separately. The result is believed by some
people to have been much superior to that of our present
stress on written spelling. One thing evidently might be


gained by the old method correct division of words into
syllables. Often children try to spell a word as a whole, with
the result that they omit or misspell one or two syllables.
Spelling by syllables has its advantages. Suppose the word
is transubstantiation. If the pupil will concern himself first with
Iran alone, he will not miss it; then comes sub, which is easy.
Syllable by syllable he will complete the word.

To determine syllables the dictionary is, of course, the best
authority and must often be consulted. A few general princi-
ples, however, will be helpful even though there are occasional

1. Prefixes and suffixes usually constitute distinct syllables.
See the lists of prefixes and suffixes in the preceding chapter,
Exercises 53 and 54.

2. When a consonant is doubled the syllabic division is
usually between the two letters. This rule sometimes accounts
for exceptions to number 1.

EXAMPLES: run-ning, hop-ping.

3. Any group of letters not easily and naturally pronounced
ther should not be made a syllable.

I.XAMPLES (wrong): Cat-holic, bac-kache, tob-acco.

One particularly common blunder in syllabication (a viola-
tion of both rule 1 and rule 3) consists in making a syllable of

n such words as attention, dissension, production, etc. The
final syllable in such words is pronounced as if spelled shun.
The- letters ion alone could not possibly account for such
pronunciation; the preceding t or s belongs to the final syllable,
which is (ton. or sion as the case may be. This applies to nearly
all words with these very common endings. But of course a
different principle applies to such a word as onion. It is pro-
nounced nn-i/uti; the syllables, therefore, are on-ion.

ther common error is treating ed as a distinct syllable
in words in which it is not a syllable. L//.W. fr exampl

-yllable and cainmt !. divided.


116. Dividing a Word at the End of a Line. Words should
never be divided at the ends of lines except between syllables.
This is an absolute rule and the violation of it makes a very
bad impression on any reader. It does not follow, however,
that any word may be divided between any two syllables. On
account of misunderstandings that may result, at least for a
moment, it is desirable to observe the following general instruc-
lions regarding the division of words between syllables:

1. Do not divide very short words. There is no need of
doing this and the result is awkward.

Kx AMIM.I.S (undesirable): H<- tri-l cv-ory door. Put down all the e - ven numbers. 2. Avoid division of surname-. MPI.K (undesirable): He turned the work over to Mr. Camp - hell. :*. Be sure that the first part of the divided word does not nive ;i wrong impression, or tend to cause mispronunciation. Thus in the first example below, the reader gets the idea of number ten and readjustment in the next line requires un- necessary labor; in the other examples the natural tendency, on seeing the first syllable alone, is to mispronounce. I :\ \MPLES (misleading): (1) The squid has ten - tacles about the mouth. (2) The green bananas would not rip - <-n. (3) As it was, there was no - thing to be done. (4) That in itself was her - itage enough. 1. Avoid all strange-looking syllables resulting from division, oven though the break is between syllables. EXAMPLES: hor-scs. ro:id:i-blc, unc-ven. Correct division of words is a matter of watchfulness as, indeed, is correct English generally. It is every writer's duty to present his ideas with as few distracting elements as possible. A reader will resent receiving a wrong impression, even though he may not be eorscious of the exact cause of his irritation. CAPITALIZATION AND SPELLING 165 EXERCISE 68 Where would you divide the following words? Before using a dictionary try breaking each word as you would if it came at the end of a line. gallant uttered analyzed business loving nation question strength lovely omission invention running pictures Passover diaphragm unhesitatingly union audible active knowledge 117. Compound Words. Our customs with regard to compound words are so inconsistent that general rules cannot _iven. The student will have to learn which words require the hyphen, which are run together without it, and which groups make two or more words. Pronunciation will often aid in determining the matter, but in many cases it will be necessary to consult the dictionary. The following observa- tions also will be of some help, even though there are unfor- tunately many exceptions to the general principles mentioned : 1. Short words that have been associated for a long time and are pronounced with a single effort and unequal stress are very commonly made one word, without a hyphen. EXAMPLES: sidewalk, sheepskin, honeymoon. 2. When two words that are combined receive equal em- phasis and separate pronunciation, the hyphen is likely to be used. I EXAMPLES: deaf-mute, cat's-paw. The general practice may be fairly well summed up a< follows: Compounds of common words like book, house, sh<>f>,
when the prefixed word is of one syllable, are not hyphen-
ated. When the preceding word consists of two syllables, the

hyphen When the preceding word consists of three

or more syllables, the two words are written separately.

EXAV ho|> tailnr-.-liop trie shop

room oolm--room operating room

While thi- i< a- valuable te-t it iim.-t be checked with the nary'- record of common fat there are in 166 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH exceptions. The following sections will deal with numerous specific examples of the different forms. 118. Words Sometimes Wrongly Combined. The follow- ing expressions consist of separate words and should not be used as single words or with the hyphen: every time in spite of no one on to per cent. some day all right (There is no such word as alright.) near by (Nearby and near-by are questionable forms.) 119. Words Written Without a Break. Each word in the groups listed below is one word, written without the hyphen: All combinations ending in self myself, yourself, themselves, etc. All combinations ending in body anybody, somebody, 1 nobody, etc. All combinations ending in thing anything, something, nothing, every- thing, etc. All combinations ending in ever whatever, whoever, wherever, whenever, etc. All combinations ending in where elsewhere, nowhere, somewhere, etc. The following words are not divided: almost inasmuch schoolboy already (Do not confuse inside (outside, onside, schoolmaster (but this with all [is] ready.) etc.) instead midnight moreover nevertheless nickname notwithstanding nowadays outstretch railroad rewrite although altogether always apiece biennial (triennial, etc.) childhood everlasting extraordinary farewell forthcoming school teacher) semicolon sometimes 2 somewhat surname today 3 together tomorrow' tonight 3 wardrobe without 1 In a different sense some body may be two words, some being then an tuijortive. EXAMPLE: The eclipse was caused by the passage of some body between the earth and the sun. 7 Sometime (one word, an adverb} should be distinguished from some time (two words, meaning a considerable period). EXAMPLE: Sometime I hope to go to Europe. My brother has spent some time there. 1 To-day, to-morrow, and to-night used to be considered the proper forms and an- still preferred by some writers, but the forms without the hyphen are also in general use. CAPITALIZATION AND SPELLING 167 120. Words Employing the Hyphen. Compounds beginning with the following words are almost always written with hyphens: by by-laws, by-path, by-products, etc. extra extra-fine (but extraordinary). father (xi'.s/er, son, etc.) mother-city, sister-church, brother-mason, son- in-law, etc. (but fatherland). fellau fellow-man, fellow-servant, etc. (but fellowship). ind quarter) half-moon, half-mast, quarter-mile. self self-evident, self-supporting. world (worldly) world-empire, worldly-minded. A great many compound adjectives require the hyphen in order to prevent ambiguity or awkwardness. (Incorrect) (Correct) 1. Even ten story buildings are 1. Even ten-story buildings are rare in Europe. rare in Europe. 2. The home of the Anglo-Saxons 2. The home of the Anglo-Saxons was a low lying section. was a low-lying section. 3. My home made pickles are 3. My home-made pickles are delicious. delicious. 4. A tall, red haired man greeted 4. A tall, red-haired man greeted me. me. Many prefixes and some words are followed by the hyphen when they terminate in a letter the same as that beginning the root syllable or the next word. ipi.Ks: pre-eminent, co-ordinate, bell-like, head-dress, night- time, pale-eyed. In printing, the dieresis ( ) is sometimes used over the second of the two vowels that meet, instead of the hyphen between them. MPI.KS: preeminent, cooperate. f-e the effect on the meaning secured by making one word out of two or nimv - parate words. What are the dif- between the following pair-'.' (1) A hot-bed and a hot bed. ol and a dancing school. (3) A sidewalk and a side walk. 168 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH How many meanings can you get from the following words by inserting hyphens? (1) Twenty five cent pieces. (2) A man eating tiger. EXERCISE 69 Correct all errors you find in the following list (some expressions are now correct) : self seeking fellowservant no-thing bookkeeping log book alright homelike any thing ail-though cannot every timo anywhere onto toyshop not withstanding book o by ways today life blood cold drawn elsewhere school hoi percent life long world politics half turn church wedding moon shim- water-tight any body ice-man nearby drugstore ice-cream over anxious sometime self-reliance more over rabbitskin 121. Spelling Out Numbers. In general it is best to write out in words all numbers from one to one hundred inclusive. ;>t as indicated in the next section; and likewise all large

numbers that may bo spoken of as hundreds, thousands, etc.

i :\ IMP]

The distance is about eighty-five miles, and there are two stations
about ten miles apart.

It was pos>il>le to secure about nineteen hundred recruits from'a
county of twenty-five thousand population.

Note, however, that while we write out twenty-five thousand,
we preferably use figures to express 25,500, because it would
bo awkward to spell this all out. Some special points worth
noting are:

(a) Always spell out a number beginning a sentence.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

109 men constituted the force. One hundred nine men constituted

the force.
Or : The force consisted of 109 men.


(b) Spell out the time of day (but figures are used in time

EXAMPLE : seven-thirty.

(c) Spell out ages.

KXAMPLK: eighti-fii years, seven months.

(d) Spell out sums of money less thdn a dollar (except in
lists containing sums of more than a dollar), and "round
numbers" in larger amounts.

MPLES: It cost ninety cents.

I paid thirty dollars for it.

122. When Figures May Be Used. The practice explained
in the foregoing section applies to ordinary writing in which
numbers are not extensively used. In writing that involves
extensive use of statistics of any sort, figures are used much
more freely, both to save space, and to save time for the reader.
The general principle is not to spell out numbers of a com-
plicated nature. Thus we use figures for:

(a) Dates.

\MPLK: M:iy 24, 1895.

(b) Dollars and cents.

EXAMPLE: $4.7_>.


(c) Street numbers of houses and other buildings.
EXAMPLE : 753 Washington Street.

(d) Numbers of three figures or more that are not even
hundreds, thousands, etc.

: 204 (but two hundred), 11,260 (but eleven thousand).

(d) Per c-nt and ratio (except in writing of a distinctly
literary character).

cut mi ln.-ui.'-; tin- ratio in 2 to 3.


(e) A list of articles, a group of dimensions, or any series
of numbers or collection of statistics that would become tire-
some to the reader if spelled out.


Please send 2 doz. no. 4622 shirts, size 16.

In 1896 there were 11 cases of small pox, 242 of measles, 112

of tetanus, etc.
The living room was 16 by 24 feet; the dining room, 15 by 1*; the

kitchen, 12 by 14. l


Correct the following:

1. The Panama Canal is 50 miles long. It was begun in nineteen hundred

and four. Lieut. Col. Geo. W. Goethals was made chief engineer
in nineteen hundred seven. The average depth is 42 I

2. His bill was seven dollars and eighteen cents for board and $.90 for

1 tundry. There was a $5.00 charge extra for his 7-year-old boy.

3. 69 divorces per 100,000 were granted in Alabama in 1900, as against

10 for the KUDO population in 1870.

4. At 7:30 the man died aged S7 years, seven months, and 24 days.

5. The room was eighteen by six by 12 feet and would accommodate 10

machines costing eighteen dollars and sixty cents each on a daily
outlay of $.80 e

'. <> or 7 of us fellows planned to go camping at 67th and the lake. I had
only 2 dollars but my cousin had Sii.l.V, so we decided tofrnt a tent.

, 123. Some Rules of Spelling. English spelling is notorious-
ly inconsistent and confusing, so that in general the spelling
of each word is learned by itself; nevertheless there are some
rather simple rules that will be helpful in spite of the fact
that there are exceptions to most of them.

Rule I. Monosyllables and words accented on the last
syllable, ending in a single consonant preceded by a single
vowel, double the final consonant before a suffix beginning
with a vowel.

EXAMPLES: run, running; admit, admitting.

1 In a story, however, if the dimensions were given at all, they would be spelled out.


But note that if the accent is not on the last syllable there is
no doubling.

EXAMPLE: profit, profiting.

Note also that two vowels preceding the final consonant
obviate the doubling.

EXAMPLE: conceit, conceited.

Rule II. Final silent e is generally dropped before a suffix
beginning with a vowel and retained before a suffix beginning
with a consonant.

EXAMPLES: raro, racing; hope, hoping; arrange, arrangement.
EXCEPTIONS: judgment, acknowledgment, abridgment.

A further group of exceptions to Rule II occur because
c and g are generally hard before a, o, and u, and soft before
e, i, and y. In such words as change and peace, the addition
of able would, according to Rule II, bring g and c before a,
making these letters hard. To indicate the soft pronunciation,
it is necessary to retain the e at the end. Therefore we have
changeable, peaceable, and similar spelling of a few other words
(traceable, etc.).

Rule III. In general there are adjectives ending in able
corresponding to nouns ending in ation; but if there is no noun
ending in ation, the adjective ends in ible. In the latter case
there is often a noun ending in ibility.

EXAMPLES: accusable (adj.); accusation (n.)

conformable (adj.); conformation (n.)
admissible (adj.) There is no noun admissation.
defensible (adj.) There is no noun defensation.

Rule IV. To avoid confusion between ei and ie, the follow-
ing jingle may be helpful:

/ !>;

( >r \vln-M souni md is not lone

friend, kerchief, mischief, sieve, view.

Rule V. Words of two or more syllables rarely end in
double I; words of one syllable rarely end in one I.

until, till; fulfil, fill.
KXCKPTIONS: foretell, undersell, recall, misspell.

Rule VI. The ending ize is more common in America than
The following words are sometimes misspelled because
they end in the less common way:

advertise chastise demise supervise

enfranchise compromise advise surprise


1. Write all the adjectives and nouns you know that are
related to the following verbs and verb-roots:

flex (bend) digest invert dur (last)

fuse irritate separate detest

limit extend repi damn

admit navigate via ace

collect calculate vary negotiate


2. Among the exceptions to Rule III are the adjectives
related to the following verbs. Form the adjectives.

teach break pay read depend

sale laugh eat love receive


1. Form the present participles of the following verbs:

give sin bluff shriek sit

play fan rough dine set

trace make seek write lay

2. Add able to the following:

like space place peace

trace plac (please) renew mend

3. Are the following words correctly spelled?

advertise lovable feasible abridgment

Lble lining weird placement

convertible trimming leisure believe

foretell skilful awful restful

124. Learning the Troublesome Word. The following ex-
ercises contain lists of troublesome words which appear with a
Jarity that makes their mastery once and for all impera-
Avoid the feeling that some of them, like until, are so
a-ily -polled that they do not merit attention. Experience
has shown that little words make more than their share of
trouble. 1-W instance, no and know, new and kneio, are con-
tinually confused. Bear in mind that misspelling a long word
;-ed, but missing a short and common word i-
as evidence of incompetency.

pupil, through many failures, gets the idea that he

i<>t a "natural speller." He even begins to believe that

nature failed to equip him with the ability to 8pe.ll, and as a

6fl not try to improve. Son he mn-'nler-



the teacher unreasonable in demanding that he spell ordinary
words correctly. Usually such a pupil misspells one or two
hundred different words persistently and spells all other words
correctly. Because the list is somewhat extended he fails to
note that he is misspelling the same word again and again;
whereas if he were aware of the great number of times he mis-
spells that one word, he would take the time to learn it and
end a series of errors. Six months of careful study of his own
errors will generally remove most of the difficulty.


A prominent business firm at one time employed the follow-
ing list of words in the examinations it required of stenographers.
Can you spell every word?

1. likelihood

2. commensurate

3. addicted

4. excessive

5. descent

6. ascertain

7. tariff

8. schedule

9. foreclose

10. mortgage

11. lien

12. interfere

13. legitimate

14. grateful

15. edition

16. petition

17. council

18. legibly

19. description

20. company

21. latter

22. useful

23. device

24. referred

25. principal

26. stationary

27. library

28. advice

29. canvas

30. canvass

31. prestige

32. lose

33. stationery

34. loosely

35. eligible

36. accidentally

37. conscientious

38. judgment

39. accommodate

40. concern

41. recommend

42. congratulate

43. imitation

44. mahogany

45. accrued

46. bankruptcy

47. rolls

48. hysterical

49. aisle

50. calendars

51. measurements

52. bulletin

53. dissatisfied

54. embarrassing

55. culpable

56. definition

57. adequate

58. ridiculous

59. cargo

60. conscience

61. attic

62. basement

63. feasible

64. precedent

65. annoyance

66. anonymous

67. deceased

68. diseased

69. indebtedness :

70. redeemable

71. competitors

72. hazard

73. expenditure

74. extension

75. interference




The following is a list of common words that are very fre-
quently misspelled. Words mentioned in Exercises 73 and
75-77, inclusive, are here omitted. Study these words care-
fully and master the spelling of any that have troubled you.

1. across

38. despair

75. maintenance

2. address

39. destruction

76. manageable

;i 11 right

40. development

77. marriage

4. amateur

41. difference

78. mathematics

5. answer

42. dining

79. meanness

0. apart

43. disappear

80. meant

7. apparatus

44. disappoint

81. measles

8. appearance

45. discipline

82. misspell

9. approach

46. dissipated

83. murmur

10. argument

47. duly

84. mystery

11. arouse

48. etc.

85. necessary

12. arrangement

49. exaggerate

86. nickel

13. arrival

50. excellent

87. ninety-ninth

14. article

51. existence

88. noticeable

15. autumn

52. experience

89. oblige

16. awful

53. fascinate

90. occurring

17. awkward

54. Filipino

91. omitted

18. bachelor

55. foretell

92. operate

19. baggage

56. forty-four

93. opportunity

20. balance

57. gasoline

94. optimism

21. barbarous

58. gauge

95. original


59. grammar

96. oxygen

23. beginning

60. humorous

97. parallel

JL beiiffiting

61. hundred ths

98. paralyze


62. incident

99. Philippines

63. independent

100. picnicking


64. indispensable

101. possession

28. cemetery

65. infinite

102. possibly

29. chestnut

66. insistent

103. practical

:;u. dothes

67. intelligible

104. prairie


68. kerosene

10."). preceding

69. laid

100. preference

70. license

107. prejudice

71. lightning

10^. preparation


7J. li(juefy

109. privilege

73. loneliness

110. procedure

37. dc-t.

74. loveliness

111. professor



112. pumpkin

113. pursue

114. questionnaire

115. reference
HO. rhythm

117. safety

118. sandwich
11'.). Saturday

120. sentence

121. separate

12:5. similar

124. sincerely

125. solemn

126. sophomore

127. specimen

128. speech (but speak >

129. spoonfuls

130. succeed

131. sufficient

132. superintendent

133. supersede

134. tassel

135. together
130. truly

137. Tuesday

138. turkey

139. twelfth

140. tyranny

141. umbrella

142. usually

143. vaccinate

144. vegetable

145. vengeance

146. vertical

147. villain

148. visible

149. weather

150. Wednesday

151. which

152. woolly

153. yacht


"ii to spell the following words that arc often confused.
Use each in a sentence or phra- to make sure that you know
the meaning.

to take

except to leave OUt

affect to act on

effect (n.) result, (v.) accomplish

angel a heavenly bein<: angle a corner aimer a tool for boring auuur to predict or indicate It augurs ill. base (n.) the bottom, (a.) vile a deep tone 1 In-side at the side of besides in addition to ;>rake a device to stop a vehicle
hreak to destroy

i-:ilivas cloth

advice noun
advise- verb

altar in a church
alter to change

i :\ climb
assent to agree to

bear (v.) to carry, (n.) an animal

berth a bed

birth beginning of life

born brought into the world
borne carried

cannon a gun
canon a law

The canons of the church.

capital the chief city, money

canvass to sell from house to house capitol a government building

1 /fan* (with a short a) is the name of a ti-h.



ceiling covering of a room
pealing closing up tight

choose present tense
chose past tense

not fine
course ground traversed

complement that which completes
compliment praise

creak to make a noise
creek a small stream

deceased dead
used ill

device noun
devise verb

emigrant one who leaves a country
immigrant one who arrives in a

faint weak

feint a mock attack

farther applied to distance
further applied to logical relation
I would say further that it is
farther than you realize.

formally according to form
ly previously

jiuilt state of having committal


choir a group of singers
quire 24 sheets of paper

chord in music
cord a string or rope

colonel an officer
kernel meat of a nut

council a body of men
counsel an advisor, or advice

currant a fruit

current the flow of a stream

desert a desolate place

dessert the last course at a meal

dyeing coloring
dying giving up life

emigration going from a country
immigration coming to a country

faker one who swindles (slang)
fakir a Mohammedan religious

finally at last
finely in small parts

gait manner of walking
liate an opening in a fence

grisly horrible
grizzly grayish


Learn the meaning and the spelling of the following words.
K-h in a sentence or a phni<\ to make well hind part of foot hear to pem-ive -at this place -d to store Up selfishly horde a wild multitude 178 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH impassable not to be passed impassible reserved knew past tense of know new not old l.-iti-r -used of time hitter used in reference -to make less lesson something to be learned marten an animal (one of the weasels) martin a bird (one of the swal- lows) miner one who mines minor one under age prndant a hanging jewel ornament pendent hanging precede to go before proceed to continue prophecy (n.) a prediction prophesy (v.) to predict quiet still quite entirely real genuine reel a revolving device right correct rite a ceremony write to put words on paper sleight skill (sleight of hand) slight small their possessive of they there an adverb of place ingenious clever at contriving ingenuous frank know to understand no not any lead (v.) to conduct, (n.) a metal led past tense cf had (v.) loose adjective lose verb meat flesh (a.) proper, (v.) to come together mete mea peace freedom from strife piec< a portion or fragment pillar a column pillow a cushion principal (adj. ) first principle (n.) osence, primary, element (Principal is a noun when it means principal teacher or prin- cipal sum.) propose to suggest to others purpose intention rabbet the groove on matched lumber rabbit hare receipt acknowledgment of re- ceiving recipe a formula, or list of in- gredients road a street rode past tense of ride rowed past tense of row stationary not moving stationery writing material tli or of or for it therefore consequent ly CAPITALIZATION AND SPELLING 179 to a preposition too an adverb two a number weak feeble week seven days ware a class of material wear to be dressed in where a question of place EXERCISE 77 The following words are often misspelled because they are mispronounced. Write a phrase or short sentence containing .each. Pronounce the words carefully. accidentally not accidently aeroplane (now often airplane not aereoplane or areoplane arctic, antarctic not artic, antartic asked (past tense) not ask athletic not athaletic or atheletic boundary not boundry brethren not brethern ' casualty not casuality children not childern February not Febuary forward not foward government not goverment grievous not grievious or grevious height not heighth incidentally not ineidently irrelevant not irrevelant laboratory not labratory or labatory I -not larnyx library- -not libary lightened not lightninged mrningitis - riot incngitis militarism not milituryism mischievous not mischievious Niagara not Niagra nominative not nomitive occasionally not occasionly particularly not particurly partner not pardner perambulate not preambulate percolator not perculator personally not personly perspiration not prespiration pronunciation not pronounciation recognize not reconize repetition not repitition ridiculous not rediculous sacrilegious not sacreligious specialty not speciality studying not studing suggestion not sujjestion superfluous not superfulous surprised not suprised temperament not temperment while, whether, etc. not wile, wether, etc. QUESTIONS ON CHAPTER X 1. ('an \ou give two general principles of syllabication'.' '_' \Vh;it is the general law concerning the breaking of a word at the line? perial d:n In- con!> (not

rout<- 'root, not rowt) root (not r
pur' port
quay (kee)
rapine (rft:

regime (ra /.hern )
reg'ular (not regler)


MO (ra zu ma )

ille (re val'y&; in U. S. Army,


roof (sound as in boot)
salmon (sam'un)
salve (sav)

sati.-ty (sa ti'e ty)
w-'nlle (butsenll'ity)
since (never wnse)
.-Iwk (.s/i'c/; is vulgar)
.-lovcn (slfr.

stjualid CskwOlid)


MI!) tie (suttle)


ti.-kli-li (not tichcliah)


\\hctl i iveather)

not wear)

o y)
z56lVv (four Ml!.-. I

make. pretense

pretty faces

patented process

a protege of Saint Gaudens

puerile affectation in speech

purport of the message

the boats along the quay

rapine, pillage, and murder

recess time

ancient regime

regular verbs

research in chemistry

resources of a bank

a resume" of the report

bugles sound reveille

robust boy

a modern romance

roof of a house

Columbia River salmon

put salve on a wound

to eat to satiety

senile debility

since yesterday

the cat's sleek fur

slovenly homes

seek solace

squalid huts

squalor and decay

the status of the case

a stolid countenance

a subtle, unseen influence

suite of rooms

tepid water

ticklish bib !

vagaries of fate

a vaudeville entertainment

.ous witnesses
lords and viscount^

and corn
whether or not
when- and when
yeast for the bread

v and !.



1." What are some of the faults of American speech? How can they
be eradicated?

2. How does America of today differ from the America of a generation
or two ago with regard to speech requirements?

3. What is the difference between enunciation and pronunciation?

4. Is poor enunciation the result of laziness or of hurry or of both?

5. What is the difference in sound between 60 and uf Pronounce
multitude, food.

6. How can one learn to pronounce correctly wheat, where, etc.?

7. Do you know the diacritical markings? If not, consult a good
dictionary and familiarize yourself with these very necessary symbols now.



This chapter consists of a series of exercises in review cf the
previous chapters of the book. The exercises are intentionally
varied in the hope of cultivating alertness to all kinds of bad
Knglish. Reasons for every correction should be given. If
you do not understand the trouble, in each case go back to
the text and master the principle. "There is no royal road to
ietry," said Euclid to the prince of Egypt; neither is there
an easy road to correct English or, for that matter, to any-
thing worth while. Only the penetrating force of your own
mind will determine the degree of your success. Resolve now
to understand the reasons for every correction you can make
in Kxi'ivises 85 to 100.


Which of the alternative forms is correct in each of the
following sentences?

1. 10 very person should be proud of (himself, themselves) and conscious

of a power to do. (Sec. 59.)
'J. With her :md (/, me) the case is somewhat different. (Sec. 64.)

3. The lawyers proved beyond doubt that it was (him, he) who forged the


4. They chose alternately 1 (he, him) and (/, me) to stand guard. (Sec.

i !< (. If v. .-is only (him, his) having been warned that saved Tom and (/,


<'/,f/of.s/<'Orunno\v (like. .M it lifted to. (Sees. 54, 79 d.) & II- /; l>:ick to

I tier. (What other trouble is there in this sontei.

'Wat- '\n.

Thcro arc two word* /-/. Use them both in sentences.




Which of the following sentences are 1 right? Correct those
that are wrong and give reasons.

1. Each of them were doing ell they could to save them.

2. Use three spoonsful of water to one of flour.

3. I like Dicken's Darid Copperfield exceedingly.

4. He was sick so I had t<: t.-ike his place. 5. The alumni of Vassar had a meeting with WP. I) Ks. (Three errors.) 6. The forget-me-not's are blooming there tod:iv. 7. He made pictures of the fungi with both foci of his lens. 8. Thorn's two sides to every question. 9. I could of done it but I was to tired. (Two errors bad ones, too.) 10. Have a pencil and paper ready so that it 2 can be used for taking orders. EXERCISE 87 Correct the following: 1. When was Greece and Rome gr '2. Children should be allowed to Me notion pictures if they are good. :>. Why don't the rich man pay his taxes?

4. The little car with two of it's tires flat finished first.

5. Be sure and visit Mary when you are to Hoston.

6. There was an argument as to whom should pay the bills.

7. When a person grows old they like to have their own way.

8. A person should not be of a nature, which when anyone criticizes

them they get angry.

9. We couldn't hardly see the road.
10. He acts like he owned the earth.


Some of the following are right. Which are they? What
is wrong with the others? Correct them.

1. I think Henry is queer; he don't seem to notice his friends.

2. As soon as I had eaten the cake I felt sick.

3. This is one of the five best books which has come out this ye:ir.

4. It was the supremest effort of his life.

5. If there was only a bridge at the river!

'Should are be changed to iff


6. It was not Murphy but I who finally pot the job.

7. One of the grandest sights in the world are the Pyramids.

8. This data mui, lai>h down yesterday after lunch.

8. (She, her) and her sister were the only one's I knew. (Find an error

in a phi;

'irge number of mules (was, urr< ) shipped to Europe. 10. I had IP in the ocean before. EXERCISE 9O Which of the following arc wrong? Why? Make correc- tion- where they arc necessary. 1. I w.-.s so senred I couldn't remember what my name was. (Has the '!'.') -. I dislike fcn *f.ld you more than any one. (Me: ning?) - too busy to p-ad the paper. I. II'. in MX foot of water. (Three en I -ked him. and he said I could. ' T than a dog. to thorn:: ich sentc I V I 'li ID pie. :id I for ! 10 I 1!M VOCATIONAL KXdLISH EXERCISE 01 Fill the blanks with shall, will, should, or wouki.. Review Sections -1.") and 4(>.

1. you be working tomorrow'.'

2. you do me a favor?

Mr. Brown look after the east door," said the Principal.

I. "I shall not go," said Brown to Jones. Jones reports to Smith,

"Brown said he not go."

">. My son go to school tomorrow for I see to it myself.

6. My niece start to school next September and I take

pleasure in making things pleasant for her.

7. He assured me that the price rise.

8. I don't believe ho ev< r bo well again. '.. He belli Y.-S that he not be able to meet us. 10. If I go, they W(,uld be glad. EXERCISE 92 rrcct the following and j>ive reason-:

1. Then- is at least in most civilixed countries, more women than men.

2. Like a flash the animal had sprang from the raft and swam the narrow


;!. I asked mother if I could go with Jimmio.
1. His wife was whom?
.">. The knife was carefully lain aw
r>. He might employ only two helpers; accordingly he hired a bookkeeper

and stenographer.

7. I wanted fudire so badly.

8. What's the French colors'.'
'.. What sort of a cow is that?

10. The man who was dead was a negro. (Shorten this.)


Make all needed corrections in the following. Some of
them are now correct. Tell why.

1. They took us to be them.

2. A baseball is more nearly round than a football.

3. Let you and me go swimming.

4. It was wo whom the officer saw.

5. An example of generosity is seen in Richard the Lion-hearted, who,

history tells us, forgave his brother John's rebellion.

6. They decided to raise the building about seven inches higher.


7. They wanted Charlie and I to play Indian.

8. We never worry now like we used to do.

9. "Will you help me?" "Sure."

10. Now you'll have to do it all over again.


Correct the following wherever necessary:

1. Finally she laid down in the water to escape detection.

2. Whom can I believe if not him?

3. We read of a king having lost his throne through the lack of a horse-

shoe nail.

4. Prominent men like you and he cannot afford to be wrong.

5. The witness swore it was them, not us, whom Murphy saw.

6. Take one home for yourself and wife.

7. I'll walk a little way with you.

8. Everything from knives to scarves were marked down.

9. Potatoes sold for fifty cents a peck.
10. Walk quiet or you'll wake the baby.


Correct the following :

1. If we win today we will have made it five straight.

2. I think we will be able to go.

3. I seen my duty and I done it.

4. I dropped the ring in the \v:it<-r. ou can't go without he p M. He found his hat in back of the dresser. 7. The man differed so violently from us that we were forced to part with him in London. 8. You can hire whoever you want to do it. !. He is the tallest of the two brothers. 10. They chose me rather than they. EXERCISE 96 Correct the following : 1. 1 .very one in the audience had tears in their eyes. 2, Hamilton and Burr fought a dual. a gun, a phonograph, and a pair of skates lor Christmas. I 1 itter her 4. I ran pick cherries faster than anybody. "). We felt kind a lonesome so 1 I with mama and I. 6. There should he le-s than tlm to many for there purpose. 106 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH 7. I fully expected to have been present. (A common error. Expect- ed looks toward the future. The infinitive here is perfect [have]; which way does it look?) 8. I never saw anything as beautiful as them roses. (Make two changes.) 9. The cup is neither made of copper or bronze. 10. A dog is the noblest of animals. (Is another the needed?) EXERCISE 97 Write the plurals of the following: I echo elf mouse brother 13 die wife fox aviator parenthesis oasis zero reef hoof money bill of fare thesis loaf EXERCISE 08 Write sentences employing the following words: 1. principal and principle 11. canvas and canvass 2. there and their 12. compliment and complement 3. affect and effect (as a verb) 13. farther and further 4. purpose (as a verb) and propose 14. impassable and impassible 5. quite and quiet 15. allusion and illusion 6. advise and advice 16. ingenious and ingenuous 7. devise and device 17. auger and augur 8. accept and except 18. council and counsel 9. to and too 19. grisly and grizzly 10. hung and hanged 20. cannon and canon EXERCISE 90 Complete the following words by adding ise or ize: % advert merchand summar compr modern surpr tempor chast enfranch util civil magnet superv. EXERCISE 1OO Form the present participle of each of the following words. The rule is to be found in Section 123, II, but the starred forms are exceptions. Try to form a rule for the exceptions. change dye* awe tie* hope encourage return die* blue shoe* hoe* sing agree* make ice tinge* judge glue PART TWO COMPOSITION LETTERS ADVERTISING CHAPTER XIII COMPOSITION ORAL AND WRITTEN 133. The Need of Practice in Composition. Every bit of talk for a purpose and every bit of writing for a purpose involves composition the putting together of ideas so that they will, if ible, accomplish the desired purpose. Effective self- expression demands, first of all, the power to use the means of expression correctly; but you may know all the principles of correct English developed in the first part of this book, and yet fail in composition through lack of practice. It is the pur- pose of this and the following chapters to provide the necessary practice. 134. The Opportunity of Conversation. Oral composition talk for a purpose is doubtless, the most common kind of composit ion, 1 hough too often it is not thought of as composit ion ;l. When you are going to make personal application for -it ion. do you plan what you shall say and how you shall it? Do you try to imagine the, questions the employer will a-k you, and decide what answers you can give him? Do you thought to the sort of impression you will make upon him by ii of appearance, a self-respecting bu1 modest man- and enunciation, and correct Knglish? The-e .-ill elements of sucre^ful oral composition. Ton many of us n-iranl we do water something that i>

i necessary but very little pri/ed because it i-
If we were limited in the upeak slowly. We instinctively feel that over-
hurried, careless speech indicates a hasty, uninformed mind.

(c) They speak in a moderate tone. We lose confidence
almost the instant that we discover the speaker is excited or in
some other way not in complete control of himself.

(d) They do not repeat; they say what they mean clearly
and fully the first time.

136. The Manner of Speaking. Some excessive rudeness
has found its way into English speech in the name of speed.
Many men answer the telephone, for example, in a "what do
you want" mood that is anything but polite. The rudeness
is the greater for the very reason that the speaker is at a safe


distance. This sort of thing "does not pay," however. No
man can afford to be brusque. Employers will seldom tolerate
impolite employees. The following excellent advice, which
may be applied more widely than it was originally intended,
is reprinted by permission of the Chicago Telephone Com-
pany :


Would you rush into an office or up to the door of a residence and
blurt out, "Hello! Hello! whom am I talking to?" and then when you
receive a reply, follow up your wild, discourteous salutation with, "I
don't want you; get out of my way. I want to talk with Mr. Jones"?
Would you? That is merely a sample of the impolite and impatient con-
lons that the telephone transmits many times a day.

There is a most agreeable mode of beginning a telephone conversation
which many people are now adopting, because it saves useless words and
is, at the same time, courteous and direct. It runs thus:

The telephone bell rings, and the person answering it says: "Morton

& Company, Mr. Baker speaking." The person calling then says: "Mr.

Wood of Curtis & Sons wishes to talk with Mr. White." When Mr. White

picks up the receiver, he knows Mr. Wood is on the other end of the line,

and without any unnecessary and undignified "hellos," he at once greets

him with the refreshingly courteous salutation: "Good morning, Mr.

1." That savors of the genial handshake Mr. Wood would have

-d had he called in person upon Mr. White.

Undoubtedly there would be a far higher degree of telephone courtesy,
particularly in the way of reasonable consideration for the operators, if
the "face-to-face" idea were more generally held in the mind. The fact
that a line of wire and two shining instruments separate you from the
n with whom you are talking takes none of the sting out of unkind

Telephone courtesy means answering the telephone as quickly as \>>-
eible when the hell rings not keeping the "caller" waiting untilone gets
good and ready to answer.. Telephone courtesy, on party-lines, means
being polite when some one else unintentionally breaks in not snapping,
"Get off the line; I am using it."

In a word, it is obviously true that that which is the correct thing to

i a face-to-face conversation, is also correct, in a telephone com.
tion, ari'l any one has but to apply the rules of courtesy prescribed long
year.- t thought of, to know the proper inan-

conM'lerate, ;md courteous.
Do o you would do face-to-face.



Study some of the following subjects until you are sure you
can say something interesting about them. Then plan what
you have to say, with the hearer in mind. Make your talk so
plain that the hearer cannot misunderstand. In other words,
be sure you have something that he wants to hear and make
sure that he hears it. Be ready, the day after tomorrow, to
discuss before the rlu>s one of the topics. In talking remember
the following P<>i'

(a) Speak slowly; don't use too many words. 'Talk is

cheap" the kind that requires many words for one idea.

(b) Tell the first thing first. Remember that your hearer
has no way of knowing what you have in mind except through
your own words.

(c) Speak confidently. You are the man who knows, and
for the time being you are the most important member of the

(d) Stand erect, without leaning on anything. It is only
weak things that need support.

Avoid "\VyV (why's) and "ah's." Do not string
your sentences together with "ami's. "

(f) When you have fini>hed, stop with a strong point.
Many ,a good address has been spoiled by a half score of verbal


1. Why I H:tv<> :i Right to Live. If a burglar wore to come into your
house and upon point; away leave the house poorer for his visit,
would you consider him within his rights? Had ho a right to
When a man comes into our house (the world) and leaves us poorer
when he dies, had he a right to what ho took?

J. The Worst Quality a Man Can Havo --( 'owardiro. Why does n man
lie? Is it because he is afraid of the consequences of something ho
has done, if the truth is known? Why will a man st.-.-il? Isn't it
because he is afraid to meet other men on ecjual footing?

1. If You Want a Thing Well Done, Don't Do It Yourself. This is the
ago of specialization.


4. "Simon Says 'Thumbs Up.' " Simon (fashion) says "Tight sleeves";

all the girls comply. Simon says "Now automobile shape"; Father
mortgages the homestead.

5. Early to Red Makes a Man Ignorant.

6. Good Results of Women's Gossip.


Arrange a ato with members of another class or with
members of your own class. Ask your teacher to help you
arrange your thoughts in a forceful way. Debating is like
football: the winners must have "steam" and be able to
concentrate on one spot. Suggested subjects follow:

->lvod: That the Sporting Page Does More Harm than Good.
J. M. -solved : That the Comic Supplement Should Be Prohibited by Law.

3. Resolved: That Breaking Quarantine Should Constitute a Crime

Punishable on a Par with Stealing.

4. Resolvi-d: That :i Stenographer Should Not Transcribe Letters Con-

taining Lies. (People will call at the "rail" and ask her concerning
these things; then she will have to lie directly.)

137. General Instructions as to Written Composition.
Whatever our feeling as to mere "talk" may be, we all realize
that when we sit down to write something, we are engaged in
composition. Yet here also we are too careless; here also wo
need patient practice. Good English flows easily as if t In-
writ er were careless of form, allowing words to fall naturally
into place. But this is only a seeming carelessness; writing
even simple Kngli>h requires a good deal of thought in phrasing
ami often considerable rephrasing to avoid misunderstandings.
In the composition exercises that follow, these fundamental
point- aa to form must be borne in mind:

1. IVe ink (or typewriter) in all composition. Few
t or import ant records are made in pencil.

_. Use only g [paper of fairly large size. Kight and a half

by eleven indies is a desirable

reful. Don't blot a paue. Leave a margin at the
>\\d your VfOrdl 01 linefl tOQ Closed V g< ' her. pride in th- Sfl and orderliness of your work. 202 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH 4. Give each piece of work an appropriate brief title, written in the middle of the top line of the first page ; and leave a blank between the title and the composition. 5. Avoid especially these two blunders: (a) The use of a comma to hold together unconnected members of a compound sentence. (See Section 10.) (Incorrect) (Correct) First feed your engine gas, to do First food your engine gas. To this turn down the lever on the do tliis. turn down the lever on the .-leering wheel. steering wheel. Or First feed your engine gas; to do this, turn down the lever on the steering wheel. Remember that the semicolon may be used as in the second "correct" example only when there is a clear M-DM- relation between the clauses. (See Section 97.) (b) The failure to build similar parts of a sentence on the same plan. (See Section 157.) (Incorrect) (Correct) To start a car give it gas and To start a car give it gas and then the starter is pushed. push the starter. Give it gas and push the starter are of similar construction. 138. The Simple Style in Writing. If you were to go to- morrow to an aviation school, should you attempt to fly alone within a month? Would it be advisable for you to attempt trick flying until you had learned simple flying? And isn't it probable that many boys and girls could never learn the more dangerous aerial work because they are physically unfit for it? Similarly, none but the writer of long and successful experience should attempt to write as did some of the masters of English prose. Ordinary persons should be content with plain state- ments and simple words. It is usually futile for the school boy or girl to attempt written eloquence. In fact, few of our great writers employed an elaborately sustained style. Even Stevenson, one of the best of stylists, COMPOSITION OKA L AND WKMTTKX 203 commonly used short words and direct sentences. His style is so natural that the reader is generally unconscious of any effort in reading. Note the simplicity of the following extract from Treasure Island. Are the words long or hard? Do you have any trouble in following the story? Can you picture the captain and the sea-shore? It was one January morning, very early a pinching, frosty morning the cove all gray with hoarfrost, the ripple lapping softly on the stones, the sun still low and only touching the hilltops and shining far to seaward. The captain had risen earlier than usual, and set out down the bearh, his cutlass swinging under the broad skirts of the old blue coat, his brass ope under his arm, his hat tilted back upon his head. I remember his breath hanging like smoke in his wake as he strode off, and the last sound I heard of him, as he turned the big rock, was a loud snort of in- dignation, as though his mind yas still running upon Dr. Livesey. Well, mother was upstairs with father; and I was laying the breakfast table against the captain's return, when the parlor door opened, and a man stepped in on whom I had never set my eyes before. He was a pale, tallowy creature, wanting two fingers of the left hand ; and, though he WOK a cutlass, he did not look much like a fighter. I had always my eye open for seafaring men, with one leg or two, and I remember this one puz/led me. He was not sailorly, and yet he had a smack of the sea about him, too. I ;i>ked him what was for his service, and he said he would take rum;
but as I was going out of the room to fetch it he sat down upon a table
and motioned me to draw near. I paused where I was with my napkin
in my hand.

"Come here, sonny," says he. "Come nearer here." I took a step

!iis here table for my mate Bill?" he asked, with a kind of leer. .

139. Expressive English. In general the style of writing
which gives the most thought per word is best, just as the
automobile tire which gives the most miles of service per
dollar cost i- lu>t. Sometimes a single word will give a wealth
of in i equal to that of a complete sentence or even half

je of ordinary coin po>it ion.

A pupil wrote of a young man a^ "going timidly up tin- exil
of the elevated'* (railroad). Now alnn, one livinu

in a lar.L'- <'ity ha> at times stalled up the exit stain they


are just like the entrance stairs except for the signs but
after a few steps the big blue and white "Exit only" has sent
him down quickly. Going "timidly" up the exit, however,
proves that the young man was not merely careless. "Timidly' '
speaks of ignorance of the city, embarrassment, and general
inexperience. That one word is worth several sentences.

In the following sentence from David Harum, note the
effect of the word lowered. Could you in half a page give as
much information about David's manner of eating or his
station in life as is expressed in the one word l>ir< rl.' David threw hack his head and lowered a stalk of the last asparagus of the year into his mouth. Note the words caved in in the following. Do they mean more than that his hat is out of shape? I come down here with my h:tt caved in, I'm goin' back home with a pocket full of tin. Song, "Camptown Races," Foster What do you know about a man who calls money ///// Try, then, to write in a simple way, but to express as much as possible in a few words. Tell nothing that your reader will resent as needless information. And don't have the sun sink in resplendent glory into a sea of molten gold', have it set. The remainder of this chapter consists of simple exercises in which the precepts that have been given are to be put into effect. EXERCISE 103 1. What qualities do you -associate with the following word groups? For instance: Isn't a man with gray eyes generally cool given to taking care of his own money somewhat stern? large diamond ring stubby nails large watch ch::rrn gray eyes shuffling gait heavy beard bald head trousers tight over run-over shoes blue eyes knees cob pipe curly hair celluloid collar yellow teeth COMPOSITION ORAL AND WRITTEN 205 2. Use each of the following adjectives with some suitable noun: fantastic consummate illiterate luxuriant scintillating pusillanimous petulant pallid perturbed ramshackle torrid typical tallowy taut. irritable credulous resolute malcontent solitary cunning EXERCISE 1O4 Write a short paper on one of the following subjects: 1. The Earliest Thing I Can Remember. 2. Thimis I Won't Do Again. 3. Buying Things You Don't Want. 4. Nicknames I Have Had. 5. Getting Out on the Wrong Side of the Bed. 6. The Kind of Boy I Think My Father Was. EXERCISE 105 Write a short paper on one of the following: 1. One Thing a Boy Scout Must Know. J. Why a Bucket of Water Set in the Storage Room Will Help to ; > Vegetables from Freezing. (Ask some one who knows.)

3. The Purpose of a Silo.

4. What One Can Learn on a Street Car.

5. Why Salt on the Sidewalk Removes Ice.

6. Getting Something for Nothing.,

7. I 1 .f Being Poor.

8. Should a Boy Know Art and Music?

!'. Why Do B..YS Buttons on Their Coat Sleeves? (Discuss

r'on-e of tradition.)
10. Swimming with the Australian Crawl Stroke.


Write several short paragraphs of advice on one of the
following subjects. Jirg'm with ,l/f/v///x, or Never.

of H:ihv.

2. i : .schall (or Tennis, Football, <>tc.)

3. Learning t< Swim. 6. I 7. LnTroobk or the Temcher t or the Preacher). 206 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH EXERCISE 1O7 After you have gathered the material necessary to a report for your history or commercial geography class, discuss with your English teacher the most effective way to organize it. Write the paper under the English teacher's direction. EXERCISE 1O8 Girls: Write a paper on the subject: Wall Paper Its Relation to the Use of the Room. Boys: Assume that you are the editor of a Question and Answer column in the sporting sheet of a great newspaper. Answer clearly but briefly the following questions: With the bases full the batter hits a short fly to the left fielder. Thinking it will be caught, the runners hug their bases. The fielder holds the lull a half second, drops it at his feet, and then throws home. The h.dl 13 quickly relayed to third and second. Are three men out? Has the fielder a right to drop a ball purposely? EXERCISE 1O9 What I Found Most Interesting in the Advertisements in this Month's (any magazine). Go carefully through the advertising pages, marking what interests you. Tell in a short paragraph just why you are interested. Do not include a discussion of two advertisement a in one paragraph. EXERCISE HO Write a composition of about two hundred words on one of the following subjects: 1. Benefits of Crying. 2. If I Were a "Movie" Censor. 3. Absence Makes the Grades Grow Poorer. 4. Ways of Sharpers. 5. Songs That Live. 6. What I've Thought Most About during the Last Week. COMPOSITION ORAL AND WRITTEN 207 EXERCISE 111 Write a paper on one of the following subjects. Don't explain too closely. Let the reader "see the point." 1. Why I Didn't Get There on Time. 2. On Forgetting a Friend's Name. 3. How I Feel after Seeing a "Movie." 4. Caught Talking to Myself. 5. How My Aunt Wants Me to Act. 6. When Tom Didn't Think Far Enough. (For instance, when he decoyed Rover under a hornet's nest and threw a stone through it.) QUESTIONS ON CHAPTER XIII 1. Is knowledge of how a bicycle is balanced sufficient, or must one practice riding? Is composition practice necessary? 2. To what extent do you judge a stranger by his speech? 3. What is the difference between self-confidence and egotism? Hmv <-:m one show self-confidence without being thought "overbearing"? 4. Describe the manner of speech employed by men of force. o. What is the correct way of answering the telephone? Why is dis- courtesy over the telephone worse than rudeness face to face? 6. What is meant by the instruction, "Tell the first thing first"? 7. Two special errors are noted in the general directions for written composition. What are they? 8. What are the salient features of the quotation from Stevenson on page 203? '.. What is "fine writing"? Why should one avoid it? CHAPTER XIV ORGANIZING A COMPOSITION 140. The Need of Organization. Writing should, first of all, transmit information from the writer to the reader. If the reader of a letter, for instance, fails to understand, the letter is a failure and represents lost time and money. The material must be discussed in a clear and systematic order if the purpose of writing is to be accomplished. But a letter lacking clearness is more than a waste of time and money; it often prejudices the reader against the writer. Business men are coming to recognize the fact that every letter going out from their hou>-< i- an advertisement, whether or not it contains "selling argument." A letter, like a man, makes an impression. A good impression leads to confidence ami future business. On the other hand, after a bu-y man has \va-ted his valuable time puzzling over the meaning of a letter, he i- not usually in a mood favorable to the writer. 141. The Paragraph. The writer who thinks clearly will naturally divide his subject into steps or divisions. Each of these divisions of thought should ordinarily have a paragraph to itself. Accordingly each paragraph should treat only the one topic assigned to it. It should be so organized that the reader will know upon beginning it what the paragraph is about, and upon finishing, exactly what the writer's ideas upon the topicare. Furthermore, each paragraph will be set off so as to appeal to the eye at a glance. Its first line will be indented plainly and other lines will not be indented. All spare will be- filled to the right margin, except possibly the last line. 142. Paragraphing Business Correspondence. Not even in literature is correct paragraphing so important as in the busr letter. Business is possible only by doing intensively one thing at a time. The successful business man develops to extra- ordinary efficiency the power of turning instantly from one " 2C8 ORGANIZING A COMPOSITION 209 subject to another; but he wants these subjects to be complete in themselves and clearly distinguished from each other. Thus a business man will, on writing a letter dealing with three things, form three distinct sections, usually paragraphs* And when he passes from one topic to the next he will naturally give definite notice of the change. A clear thinker will treat each subject so thoroughly that he will have no further need of saying anything about it unless a summary is needed. EXERCISE 112 Make such notes as the person dictating the following let- ter may have had before him. What plan had he in mind? Chicago, Illinois December 20 ; 19_ Mr. Howard Endren Hotel Henderson Columbus, Ohio My dear Endren: I was talking over the Youngstown business with Mr. Waldron yesterday, and he suggested that since you are in Columbus it will be a saving of time and money for you to run up to Youngstown and look after the cases there. He feels sure, as I do, that you will use the best of judg- ment, although the work is a little out of your line. If possible, get away from Columbus Monday night, for you may have trouble at Youngstown, and we cannot spare more than two days on the three cases there. Call on .Airs. .lames \\Vscott, 311 Front Street. Make a full settle- ment and collect waiver. The case is regular. ' of your time will be taken up with the Norton case. Ascertain the following points: - he drunk the day of the accident? Find out from his neighbors, his employer.^, and any other sources, what his habits with regard to drink are. \\ hat is the reputation of the physician upon whose report the d.iim was made? If you are suspicious, have another medical >rt immediately.

that Orumbaki 1 eor-

if the policy. You will see (lie error,
will finl i data under separate cover.

Your* HM'-rrrly,

!i!i: Accident [nauraoG


Consider the following points in relation to the foregoing

1. How many paragraphs are there?

2. Why is the first so much longer than the second?

3. Is Paragraph 4 a "brother" of Paragraph 2 or a "nephew"? Ex-


4. What is the relation of Paragraph 3 to Paragraph 4? To Paragraph


5. Why WHS not the 7th joined to the 6th instead of being made a

separate paragraph?

143. Paragraphing in Ordinary Composition. A little study
of any piece of good writing will reveal, not a hit-or-miss manner
of presentation, but an orderly system based on clear thinking
and careful organization. With this truth in mind, examine
the following paragraphs; then state the subject of each:

In 1870 I happened to be on a train that was stopped for three hours
to let a herd of buffalo pass. Wo supposed they would soon pass by, but
they kept coming. On a number of occasions in the earlier days the
engineers thought that they could run through the herds, and that, seeing
the locomotive, the buffalo would stop or turn aside; but after a few loco-
motives had been ditched by the animals the engineers got in the way of
respecting the buffalo's idiosyncrasies.

I p to within a few years, in northern Montana and southern Alberta,
old buffalo trails have been readily traceable by the eye, even as one p
on a railroad train. These trails, fertilized by the buffalo and deeply
cut so as to long hold moisture, may still be seen in summer as green lane.s
winding up and down the hills to and from the water courses.

For many years I have held the opinion that in early days on the plains,
as I saw them, antelope were much more abundant than buffalo. Buffalo,
of course, being big and black, were impressive if seen in masses and were
visible a long way off. Antelope, smaller and less conspicuous in color,
were often passed unnoticed. 1

144. Indicating the Subject of a Paragraph. It is generally
possible, in the case of writing intended mainly or merely to
give information, to learn from the first sentence of a well-made
paragraph what the paragraph is about. Such a title or sul >jeet

1 From an article by Dr. George Bird Grinnell in the National Geographic Magazine,
November, 1917.


- ntence is called a topic sentence. Notice the following
topic sentences from The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table,
ly Oliver Wendell Holmes:

1. "You don't know what I mean by the green state? Well, then, I will
tell you." (Explanation of the green slate follows.)
There are two kinds of poets just us there are two kinds of blondes."
(Explanation and comparison.)

3. "My friend the Professor began talking with me one day in a dreary
sort of way." (Then follows an explanation that friends were
bediming to regard him as old.)

Kx ample 3 was chosen to illustrate the fact that the topic
sentence does not always indicate the subject matter of the
paragraph; in this case the mood of the Professor is indicated.

Topic sentences may occur at some other point than the
l'irinning of a paragraph, but in most writing for practical
purposes it is best to begin with a clear indication of the topic.


Consider the following questions in relation to the passage
quoted from Doctor Grinnell in Section 143:

1. What is discussed in each paragraph?

udy the first sentence in each paragraph. Does this sentence give.

you the substance of the paragraph?

.".. \\ 1; t is the nature of the other sentences in each paragraph?
1. \Vh.-it do we call the first sentence of a paragraph of the sort illustrated?

hat does the newspaper reporter call such a first sentence? (See

\MU \\en- trying to ^et the substance of an article hurriedly, what
i i you read? \Yh:it would be your success in this particular
case? 'I : i in other articles.

145. The Making of a Plan. An extensive piece of com-

iin usually ha> divisions lamer than ;:iragrapi
autl i.nuk tfenenilly decides upon his chapter subj

ui the details of each chapter, and finally

the cha;


For illustration, suppose an author intends writing a book
on the subject, " Making the Small Farm Pay." He decides
that his book must treat the following topics :

Live Stock, Soil Fertility Location

Poultry The Dairy Buildings

Fruit Machinery Crops

These subjects, he sees, must be chapter headings. He
has yet to arrange them in logical order; i.e., he must decide
which chapter is to come first, which second, etc. On think-
ing the matter over and concluding that Location should come
first, ho letters it (a); Buildings (b); and so on through the list
MS indicated below:

GO Live Stock c) Soil Fertility (a) Location

(i) Poultry (h) The Dairy (b) Buildings

(f) Fruit (e) Machinery (d) Crops

A letter or a short composition might be written without a
rearrangement of these topics in logical order; but most writers,
< -inriallv in the case of a book, would prefer to make a new plan in the order of the letters, as follows : 00 Location (d) Crops (g) Live Stock (b) Build; (e) Machinery (h) The Dairy (c) Soil Fertility (f) Fruit (i) Poultry The writer's noxt task is the expansion of the chapter headings. He must think over the things he has to say about (f), for instance. Doubtless he would have material on insect pests, scales,- pruning, setting, cultivating, variety, etc. He would have to arrange these subjects in logical order. Then further subdividing would be necessary. There are a possible dozen insect pe.-is that would have to be described carefully. This outlining would be continued until the plan of each chapter had been worked out. Then the actual writing would begin. 146. Faults in the Planning of School Themes. Of course, no composition required of an ordinary student will need a plan so extensive as that described in the preceding section. Never- ORGANIZING A COMPOSITION 213 theless, a little experience will teach that the best way to make haste in composition is to plan thoroughly what you intend to -ay before you begin the actual writing. Do not be dis- couraged, either, if your first attempts are not entirely satis- factory. Be on your guard against three common faults in planning, as follows : 1. A too minute division of the subject. You must not forget that each final division of your plan is usually to be a paragraph and should, therefore, represent a section of the subject large enough to need a paragraph. EXAMPLE of too minute division: Subject Central Park 1. Location 2. Size 3. Purpose etc. In a short theme, location and size may be very adequately treated in a single paragraph. 2. Too extensive planning. A very brief plan may call for a long composition; much depends on the scope of the different topics. A common tendency of the beginner is to try to deal with material sufficient for an extended essay. Thus he begins a plan for a short composition on cotton as follows : 1. Countries producing it 2. Kinds of cotton 3. The climate required 4. Planting 5. Picking 6. Ginning 7. Carding etc. Obviously there is sufficient material for a short composition in any nn> <,f thc-e divisions, alum-, if fully developed. This 'sts the need of very definitely limiting one's subject and ona'a purpn-c in composition. arrangement. Sometimes it is hard to decide nlcr in which to present one's material. Thus, 214 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH in the final plan in Section 145, topic (f ) might exchange places with (e), so far as one can tell from so general a plan; but (g), (h), and (i) are clearly a related series of topics that should not be separated by (f) or by any other topic in the list. The greatest care to keep related topics together is always necessary. 147. The Paragraphing of Conversation. The student has doubtless heard a ventriloquist taking a dual role in a vaude- ville act. A part, at least, of his deceptive art is due to the difference in pitch or quality of tone between the ventrilo- quist's own voice and that which seems to come from his dummy. In written conversation there is no such natural means of indicating the speaker. Accordingly the writer must resort to some other method of showing who is talking. There are several devices regularly employed for this purp< one of them is the paragraph. Note the paragraphing in the following extract from /> Automobile.

4. Courage the < Asset in a Boy's Character. (Show that lyin, is due to fear of consequent 5. C Modern Industry. 6. What t .ints. 7. Things I Shouldn't Do and Why. 8. A'

10. An I : :t in Business.

11. Tin- In>trum< i nd. 216 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH 12. The Future of Motion Pictures. 13. The Influences of the Motion Picture Theater. 14. The Man Who Thinks Our Town Is Slow. 15. Tree Surgery. 16. Your Front Room as an Indication of Your Personality. 17. Why I Have a Right to Live. 18. Learning by Accident. 11). What My Enemies Have Done for Me. 20. Why I Believe in Myself. 21. The CJolden Kule and My Sister. '2-2. When a Boy Ought to Fight. 23. The Loss Resulting from a Change in the Fashions. 24. Means Employed by Advert i>ers to Attract Attention.


Imagine that you are in some specified business, and
plan a letter to your customer-, giving details of some display
advertising material you have for them. Make at least seven
paragraphs. Explain what you have to offer, suggest methods
of display, and point out the value to be obtained from the
advertising. Make this a matter of an entire recitation.


1. What is the chief use of the paragraph?

_'. Why is organization of such great importance?

:;. Will a well-organized piece of writing generally be correctly para-
graphed? Kxplain.

4. What is the practice of busin. ing the paragraphing

of business letters?

."i. What i- a topic sentence? Why the name /o^V.' Find the topic
sentences in the quotation on page 210.

6. What are the most common faults in the planning of school themes?



148. The Plan. Whether you become a merchant, a stenog-
rapher, a carpenter, or a farmer,, you will need often to write
definite instructions to some one. This is by no means as
simple as it might seem at first. Anyone who has tried to
prepare instructions for operating a camera, for example, or
even for making bread or candy, knows how many puzzles he
has to solve. The chief difficulty, of course, is to decide to what
extent your reader knows the names of the tools and processes
involved, i.e., the nomenclature of the subject. For instance,
in explaining the operation of a kodak you would need to con-
sider your reader's difficulties very carefully and try to meet
them. Always plan any composition of this nature with a
definite body of readers in mind.

(a) Example of a plan:

1. Opening the kou will find the opening spring -

a small projection covered l>y the leather. Press this gently and the

rtly open. Puil the door down until YOU hear it luck with

a Snap. i the licll t|y the two lliekeled catches

fhumli and lit, Minu tluir crip on the track, and pull gently




2. The lens is, of course, glass. Everything surrounding it is shutter.
Just inside the lens is a black adjustable curtain, the diaphragm or stop,
operated by a lever at the bottom of the shutter .... (And so the
explanation may continue.)

The remainder of this chapter consists of specific exen !><< in composition, in which you will bear in mind the following directions : 1. Put yourself in the reader's place and discover what his difficulties are. 2. Don't forget to define all terms the reader may not know. 3. Be definite. Speak of one thing at a time, using short, direct sentences. Make a paragraph for each distinct dirixitin of your subject. 4. Whenever necessary give the reasons underlying instructions. 5. Finish all sentences, and put in the a's, an's, and the'*. Do not, however, use any unnecessary words. 6. Make careful drawings when they will be helpful; number or letter all important parts. 7. Ask your brother or a classmate to read your paper. If he doesn't understand, seek your trouble and remedy it. EXERCISE 116 Boys: Explain and illustrate by drawings exactly how a baseball is made to curve. In this, as in any other exer< do not attempt to write unless you know a good deal about the subject. In this case you should know not only which way the ball should turn for each curve, but why, after the spin is given, the ball curves. Girls: Using a diagram, plan an arrangement of furniture in a living room of the following description: Fireplace heavy brick. Beamed ceiling. Woodwork and furniture Flemish oak. Room large with bay window facing south. Walnut piano. WHITING DEFINITE INSTRUCTIONS 219 Write a theme of two paragraphs as follows: lor scheme curtains, portieres, carpet, (h) Minor decorations bric-a-brac, lamps, small pictures, wall pictures. If the paragraphs resulting from this plan are too long, make new divisions. Under (a) discuss the tone (colors) in general in one paragraph and the details of this tone in a second para- )h. Under (b), if necessary, make a paragraph about brir-ii-brac and another about pictures. NOTE. There are some exceedingly interesting books on household decoration, among them: House Planning and Decorating Calkins; House in Good Taste De Wolfe; Art and Economy in Home Decora- tion Priestman; Decoration and Furnishing of Apartments Herst. EXERCISE 117 Boys: Organize and elaborate the following rambling instructions for rifle shooting. Make several paragraphs. IV<-ide, before beginning to write, just what each paragraph be about. SHOOTING THE RANGE AT 200 YARDS If you try with the eye to find the center of a dinner plate, you will it a quarter of an inch. A marksman cannot determine the center of a target with accuracy. The observer is only two feet from the dinner plate, but the marksman > hundred yards from the "bull's-eye."

Hold the rifle firmly not tightly. Move upward to the target. See
that the pun is smoothly oiled and very clean.

Hut you can easily determine the perpendicular line through the

r of a dinner plate.

You locate the bottom point of the bull's-eye. Aim at the

rim of the black at its lowest point. The front rifle sight does not then
!>lo Id.

.-)t pull the tri on will move the gun; instead, squee/e

'>ck slowly with the whole hand.
Don't close your eye when the gun "goes."

In o! ,ot higher than the bottom of the bull's-eye circle, allow

the i own width into the notch of I 1 hi.

! .-till on l.oth feel and .shoot with con>ider:il>le ;iir in the lunus.
If the shot goes low. do not c'nanue the point of aim; i ->f tin-

front r-

;i N:ilion;d Kifle 'i


Girls: Organize and rewrite the following instructions.
Put the facts in logical order. Make proper paragraphs after
outlining the subject.


A broken arm is weak for months after the break is well. Muscles
must be used or they will waste away.

Carefully but persistently subject the neck and chest to changes of
temperature by passing from the cold outside air to the warm house. A
draft will not give the properly prepared girl a cold.

There are many small muscles in the skin which should be given

Why don't we catch cold when a draft strikes the face.'

The skin muscles in the face work almost instantly because they an
kept exercised.

A sudden draft on skin unaccustomed to it will cause a cold. In
inuring yourself to the cold, don't stay out too long. Quick changes give
the muscles the best exercise. The ankles and feet likewise should be
inured to sudden changes.


Girls : Make a drawing of the head of your sewing machine.
Letter the important parts. Explain the threading process
so carefully that an inexperienced person would have no
difficulty in understanding it.


You are lending your cousin your camera. Ho is inexperi-
enced. Explain the manner of "loading."


Give definite instructions for taking a picture of a group
of friends on a summer day. Draw and letter the shutter
detail, and explain the value of the stop, the operation of the
time dial, etc.


Explain the process of printing from a negative. Give
reasons for each bath, washing, etc.




Your uncle is coming to visit you, but because of a sprained
ankle you cannot meet him. Write a clear explanation,
accompanied by a diagram if you desire, of the course he is to
take to ivarh your home from the station.


Using the following sample form of ballot, explain exactly
how a voter may indicate choice for one party in general but
vote for several men of other parties.


For Governor


For Lieutenant Governor


For Secretary of State

For Governor


For Lieutenant Governor

For Secretary of State

For Governor

For Lieutenant Governor


For Secretary of State


For Ntate Treasurer

For State Auditor


For State Treasurer

For State Auditor

For State Treasurer


For State Auditor


For Superintendent of
Public Instruction

For Superintendent of
Public Instruction

For Superintendent of
Public Instruction


F<>r \ttornc>
[] I- !' BTA1

Kor Trii-trcs N of the
Stat University

L ;. \NNI-: P. HATES


For Attorney General


For Trustees of the

.1 i ADAMS

EDITH ,i()H\




Suppose the cut accompanying this exercise is to be sent with
a letter to the purchaser of the automobile; explain clearly to

A -Spark Control Lever

B- Hand Throttle

C- Ignition

D - Accelerator Pedal

E- Starter

F -Foot Brake Pedal

G -Clutch Pedal

I -Emergency Brake Leveij

a purchaser just how to start his engine "running idle." Give
reasons for all necessary operations.


Assuming that the engine is running, explain carefully lm\v
to bring the car into " third speed ahead."

Kxcroises 124, 125, and 126 are based upon automobile operation. Both l>< girls usually are eager to learn how to run an automobile. It would be profitable i the class to the street for a demonstration. Teachers who do not understand driving will be repaid in three or four days of vigorous application by the class, for the i n-iuircd to master the theory- WhTflXli DEFINITE INSTRUCTIONS 223 EXERCISE 126 1 In three paragraphs explain exactly : (a) How to slow down while passing a wagon on the road. (b) How to stop suddenly to avoid an accident. (c) How to go down a very steep hill, using the engine as a brake. EXERCISE 127 Explain, with drawings, the proper method of mounting an automobile tire. In a paragraph give warnings against en-tain dangers in the use of force. EXERCISE 128 Write five paragraphs on the subject: Means Advertisers in Attracting Attention. Be sure that the paragraphs are on entirely different phases of the subject. EXERCISE 129 Head carefully the following from Victor Hugo's description of the field of Waterloo: e \vlio wish to picture neatly the battle of Waterloo have only to 1 on the ground an imaginary capital A. The left leg of the A is the road to Nivelles, the right leg is the road to Genappe, the tie of the A is the sunken ro;ul from Ohain to Braine-l'Alleud. The peak of the A i- M"Mt St.; there is Wellington. The lower left tip is Hougomont; : ille with Jerome Bonaparte. The lower right tip is La Belle Alii inre; tin-re is Napoleon. Write a description of some locality you have in mind :np. perhap^, or your uncle's farm. Follow the general plan : I [ugo, but do not imitate the sentence structure too closely. v to compare the shape to a letter; Italy, for like a boot kicking a football Sicily. A lake may re-en il le a hat ehet or a pear in shape. Make your descrip- pladn that tlie reader will readily understand what you in mind. 224 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH EXERCISE ISO Explain accurately the working of an electric doorbell EXERCISE 131 Girl*: Explain, with the aid of simple drawings, how tc knit some article. EXERCISE 132 Boys: Explain definitely how to dig the pit for a camp fire and to build the fire. Use a drawing. EXERCISE 133 Explain, with the aid of drawings, how to tell three different species of maples by the lr;r. EXERCISE 134 Plan a project for beautifying your school grounds, and explain your plan with the aid of a drawing. EXERCISE 135 (live details for the construction of a large American flag. EXERCISE 136 Explain carefully the cold pack method of canning fruit or vegetables.' Illustrate, if possible, with pictures cut from a magazine. EXERCISE 137 Explain, with the help of a drawing, the working of the telegraph. WHITING DEFINITE INSTRUCTIONS 225 EXERCISE 138 Explain carefully the method of making camp ration- heaters out of newspapers and paraffin. EXERCISE 139 Explain the working and the merits of some standard automobile lock. EXERCISE 14O Explain accurately the process of putting a bandage on an arm or head wound. Illustrate. EXERCISE 141 Explain accurately the correct method of seizing a drown- ing man to prevent his drowning the rescuer. Illustrate. EXERCISE 142 Girls: Explain the process of folding, cutting, and sewing a comfort kit bag. EXERCISE 143 Explain why the passing of a "low" (low barometric area) is usually accompanied by rain succeeded by cool clear weather. EXERCISE 144 Main, with the aid of drawings, the proper way to bud or graft a tree. EXERCISE 145 Explain, illustrating if possible, the operation of the rotary oiimeograpiL EXERCISE 146 Give a beginner some definite advice concerning ih< of the tyi 226 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH EXERCISE 147 Using the accompanying figure, explain in a simple way the working of the steam engine. CHAPTER XVI TYPES OF ERRORS IN SCHOOL THEMES 149. Review of Common Errors. The ordinary student does not go far in composition practice till he realizes that in some mysterious way he never can understand, he makes a good many mistakes. He may know perfectly well the princi- ples violated, but his attention must be called to them times more than once. The exercises of this chapter are taken from the writing of high-school students. Some of the errors found in them have Urn discussed in previous chapters of this book; but others are here treated for the first time, and all are so common and so important as to be worth careful attention in direct con- nection with composition practice. Most of them result in ie kind of incorrect or ineffective sentence structure. 150. Failure to Make a Sentence. Read again Section 10. ad your written work to be sure that you have a subject and a predicate for each sentence. Bear in mind that an added thought must be an independent sentence unless it is properly joined to the preceding thought. Inexperienced writers often fail to indicate thought relations which are very clear to them, but confusing to one who has only the writing to depend on. he following: 1. Dous an- valuable in many situations. For instance the blind man one sees walking down the street with a dog for his guide. 2. Tin- camel which roams the desert and can do without water for several /lays. 151. "Grafted" Sentences. Sometimes a writer, after be- uiiming a sentence, changes the form before he has finished. a- conilicting construction. Note that the writer of the following wotaioe evidently forgot his original plan after 228 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH a pause following the word soldier. Then he seems to have continued after rereading the American soldier only. One instance is the American soldier has proved his worth in battle. 152. Failure to Capitalize at the Beginning of a Sentence. This is almost an incurable disease in some cases and a great source of trouble to teachers. The pupil should bear in mind that foolish errors like this one may cost him dear. Most employers will overlook a failure to spell effervescence correctly, but few will tolerate a failure in the first rule of writing putting a capital at the beginning of a sentence. If you are addicted to this bad habit, make every effort to break it now, for if you persist in it, it will surely bring you sorrow. EXAMPLE of this error: "Return it tomorrow," Jones said he went away whistling. EXERCISE 148 Correct the following sentences: 1. Standing in front of saloons is another bad habit of course there are always a few fellows in the crowd who drink. 2. I took my seat reluctantly as soon as I had sat down I felt better. (Add a conjunction.) 3. It was cold that day a day which, unless you had overcoat and mittens, you suffered sharply. (Add a preposition.) 4. He said he could not like her faults were too many. 5. The uses of cement are many, here are some of them. 6. How it started I cannot remember whether I was put up to it or not. 7. Sometimes a girl "lets out" something which was confidentially told to her. Probably when with a crowd of girls. 8. She must be a believer in suffrage. Because every woman has the welfare of her nation at heart. 9. He was told that we would come back. Certainly the next day. 10. He is the kind of man that if he should get into a fight with a man of his size he would back down. (Omit one word.) 153. Failure to Complete Words. Often an error in writing may be traced to careless pronunciation. For example, the pupil pronounces ask for both present and past, and accordingly does not vary the word in writing; or he fails to write a final TYPES OF ERRORS IX SCHOOL THEMES 229 letter that is not prominent in pronunciation. The following sentences illustrating this trouble are from the themes of second-year high-school pupils: The mother thank[ed] the stranger. The man ask[ed] for water. They stopped for the[y] were hungry. He went an[d] came at will. When you lose you[r] way in the woods .... I use[dj to go skating. 154. The Repetition of Words. In general one should not repeat an important word while the memory of that word is still strong. EXAMPLE of bad repetition: Three fishermen set out to set their nets just at sunset. Words are often repeated for the sake of emphasis, however, ially in parallel constructions. It is impossible to make positive rules as to repetition; practice only will teach a writer to avoid a sameness of sound in one case and to seek it in another. .MPLE of repetition for emphasis: When that little dog got home he was a sorry little dog. 155. Use of Too Many Words. General wordiness and a typical correction of the fault may be illustrated by the following: <-dy) (Improved) night with some friends we "\\ith some friends we had to ing homo from a dunce walk home one evening from a which was given at a place about dance given two miles away. from wlicn- we wore? (Seventeen words.) g aii'l which, as we. had no le in which to be ! our walking. (Forty-four words.) 156. Double Narrative. Do not take valuable timr to n-ll inii twice. S)iiH-tiiiM> it i- \vi>- t> repeat an


idea in order to emphasize it or to give the reader a somewhat
different point of view, but repetition due to vague thought or
a childish fear of leaving something unsaid is always bad.

EXAMPLE: Then we had breakfast. After we had eaten our break-
fast my cousin suggested that we take down the tent. After we
had taken down the tent ....

How many times are you told of breakfast? Of the tent?

It is much better to leave something to the reader's imagi-
nation. Compare the preceding puerile narration with the
following passage from a composition of a pupil in the same


1 1 is necessary to hit the nail cleanly; at first with a light, sharp stroke,
then with force. After you have missed, hold the finger in warm
water for ten seconds ....

Just as it is in bud taste to explain a joke, so it is in a -
impolite to assume that the reader needs all small things ex-
plained to him.


Criticize and correct the following:

1. People build houses now after odd plans. A house should be built

to house people rather than to resemble a dog house and should b> a

sensible house in every way.
'2. We ate our dinner ravenously as we were very hungry. (This telling

of the obvious is characteristic of weak students.)
o. My unrle surest that we po to o pitcher show.
4. When you want a thing badly why, go after it. (Not a question.)
">. When my cousin visited me last summer we thought we would take the

car and go to Jackson Park to see the scenery.

157. Lack of Symmetry. To make half of a sentence active
and the other half passive results in a lack of symmetry, just
as different systems of pruning on opposite sides of a tree would
leave it unbalanced. Likewise a phrase balanced against a
clause, or an infinitive balanced against a gerund, will produce


a lack of symmetry; or, as it is sometimes called, a violation
of parallelism or balance.

(Bad) (Improved)

I have many friends: some by in- I have many friends: some I have

etinct and others have been tried found by instinct, and others I have

and found true. learned to know by trial.

In the bad example above, the incomplete clause, some by
instinct, is opposed by the complete clause beginning with others.
In the following sentence a participial phrase is balanced
against a complete member of the compound sentence. Cor-
rection may be made in two ways by making the inconsistent
parts both participial phrases or both clauses.

The train left the track at Maysville, killing several men, and it tore
up the ties for two hundred yards.

Criticize the following sentence. Correct it in two ways.
He began yelling with all his might and to throw water on the fire.


Rewrite the following sentences, making them symmetrical.
For instance, if there are two clauses, both modifying the same
word, make them conform to the same model.

1. He planned to spend his vacation in two ways: to play tennis regularly

and he would then take a swim each day.
'J. I le was a good man the kind of fellow who attends to his own business

and he was kind to his family.
3. He was healthy, happy, and had two brothers.
1. \Vefoundthcfarm. They were boiling down sap and sirup was being

.">. Meet ing one's obligations promptly and to pay all debts, moral as well

i money matters, was his resolve.
r. The history tells of the success and death of Wolfe. (The trouble here

is not primarily a lack of symmetry in construction, but success

and death are so dissimilar in class that they should not go with one

7. A small patrh of rubber is cut and then add cement to the tire and the

patch. (This is perhaps th> mum error of this kind. The

first part is passive a n d in the third person; the second part is active

and in the second por.*


8. Causes of obscurity:

(a) Misplaced words.

(b) Omitting a and the.

(c) By failing to make the constructions symmetrical.

(d) The reference is uncertain.

[This is a remarkable example of variation where there ought to be
similarity. In (a) there is a noun construction; in (b) a participial
construction; in (c) a gerundive phrase; in (d) a complete sentem <-.] 158. Confusing Use of Pronouns. Avoid a needless change from third or first person to second person. Such a change usually amounts logically to introducing a new character, since he or 7 cannot possibly be you. (Incorrect) (Correct} At 12 o'clock 1 eat my lunch. It At 12 o'clock I eat my lunch. It t:ikcs sometimes a lout: time to get sometimes takes me a long time to what you want. get what I want. One reason for this error is the frequent use of you in such a vague and general way that it really means third person is equivalent to the indefinite pronoun one. In general it is unwise to employ yon in writing unless an address to the reader is intended. When the indefinite third person is really meant, is preferable, but excessive use of it should be avoided. (Awkward) (Better) One should take care of one's One should take care of his teeth teeth if one expects to keep one's if he expects to keep his health, health. Do not allow yourself to think of his and he in this use as masculine only; they -refer to mankind in general, hence to both sexes. And above all do not refer to the indefinite singular one by the plurals they and their. (See Section ."><>.)
The rule as to the agreement of a pronoun with it lent

in number must never be forgotten.


Explain the errors and make corrections in the folio whig
sentences :

1. ^"hen ono gets into a boat nowadays you don't know whether you are
going to get out or not.



2. When Sunday comes some people take their book and sit down and read.

3. One must be exceedingly careful when he is discussing religion or

politics unless you know the person you are talking to.

4. He knew some one would steal his gate if they had a chance.

5. The motion picture has great influence on me at times. They teach me

a lesson.

6. Too many persons are willing to jump on a person when they're down

and out.

7. The bear goes into its den in the winter and in the spring they sally

forth lean and hungry.

8. If a woman laughs loudly on the street men are always ready to talk

about them.

9. The cat caught its tail in the door and broke it.

159. Illogical Phrasing. The following sentence contains a
statement that is not strictly true. To test its accuracy, find
the subject, the verb, and the predicate noun.

Some prices we can mention at the sale are a good six-year-old cow
at $115.

A little thought will show you that the sentence is absurdly
illogical because it says that "some prices are a cow."
1 e another example:

lisli is where I fail.

Is English where; i.e., a place?

160. Questions of Tense. Changing the tense within the
narration (if :m event is of course illogical unless there is actual
change in the lime referred to. It is impossible for something
l.nth to have occurred in the past and to l>e occurring at present.

confusion of tense as the following sentence illustrate
very crude:

'. in the train and listen to sonic college hoys sinning.
the conductor. Several people

It H seldom advi^aHe for the inexperienced writer to use
the pn--nt in tell'mi 1 "inething that actually happened

EWB l'-en :il)le to use the so-called


historical present effectively at times, but this fact does not
help the novice in composition.

A different sort of tense difficulty is to be found in the

I mot an old chum of mine who had opened a grocery store a month

Note that ago is past only; had opened is the past of the past,
i.e., past perfect. Correct the sentence.

Foreigners sometimes say, "I live in America five years."
What should they say?

161. Confusion Between Direct and Indirect Quotation.
Direct quotation employs the exact words of a speaker. Every
direct quotation should be set off by quotation marks and should
begin with a capital unless very short and informal (see Section
111). Indirect quotations report the thoughts, merely, of a
speaker, in the words of the reporter. No special capitals are
needed and no quotation marks.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

I said yes I would go. (Direct Y <-s," I said, "I will go." (Direct) and indirect at the same time) I said I would go. (Indirect) 162. Failure to Paragraph Conversation. Pupils are often careless about giving a separate paragraph to each speaker in conversation (see Section 147). It adds greatly to ease of reading to have every change of speaker appear at once to the eye; and no feeling of a need of economy in paper should cause the writing of conversation in mass. Work that is too closely crowded always makes an unfavorable impression on the reader. 163. Troubles in Beginning. Students often feel that some "general remarks" are necessary at the beginning of a com- position, but this notion is usually wrong. A little observation will show that most good short stories "plunge right in" and the best practical articles begin at once with discussion of the subject. The writer of a business letter who feels that he must have an "introduction" generally wastes both his own and his readers' time, and makes a bad impression. It is, of TYPES OF ERRORS IN SCHOOL THEMES 235 course, necessary that the first sentences be self-explanatory, but if the student will start directly with the subject he means to discuss he will find writing much easier. 164. Miscellaneous Errors. Do not omit words necessary for complete grammatical expression. Be sure that you have all the a's and the's. Do not omit the subject of a sentence on the theory that people will understand what the subject is. The following sort of incompleteness is inexcusable in anything except notes or a diary: Went to church Sunday. Saw Mary and Edith the first thing. On the other hand, avoid the use of words that have no place in the grammatical structure of the sentenced (Incorrect) (Correct) John he plays ball all day. John plays ball all day. Or: He plays ball all day. Note that there are two subjects for gives in the following - win -re a pronoun has an antecedent and also a
in its own cl.

4. Why people are ; uem-d. When 1 was sure what little chance I had of get-
ting them [rings left, in the wash room) would he gone. (Sec. 10.)

4. I was a little girl and my Mother always told me to stay near home.

! 1 1. Would the sentence be correct if ?//// were omitted?)

5. A crowd of girls and myself planned to put up our lunch and go to the

When quite smrdl my grandfather and I went visiting down at the

found it. [a suitcase] in the front car \\ith some friends of

. contain* ; r of //-/r.s-//.)

7. ' ,lv" is a better complementary close than "Yours respect-

ively.'' <.rs.) ^8. He told me that lie did not consider onions healthy. !>. I ilhiiL' 1 i teeth was a tortuous process.

. ' rwhelmed in a catechism of war.

1 1. '!" 'lie memory of the ^iver.

was depleted by I 1

obtained a pantomimic view of the estate.


14. She went on bequest of her guardian.

15. He was an honest and voracious man.

panoramic torturing

exasperated healthful

observance behest

inhumane complimentary

felicitating deleted

curtsy (pref.) perpetuate

ingenuous respectfully

cataclysm veracious

Use in sentences all words cast out of Exercise 158.

167. Our Dulled Sense of Word Values. Words come so
easily that extravagance results. The pupil should learn to
use strong words only when the thought or the feeling calls for
them. The practice of using big words for si null ideas is very
objectionable to intelligent hearers or readers; besides, it dulls
the appreciation of word values. Through much misuse, cer-
tain common words seem to have lost their essential meanings.

"How's yer wife, Tom?" said one American to another.

"Wai, she's ben enjoyin' bad health most o' the winter, but
last week she complained o' feelin' better."

As a result of the too common use of words without thought
as to their real meaning, every sort of entertainment, from
Forbes-Robertson's Hamlet to a "slap-stick movie," has be-
come a show; everything pleasant is nice or fine or splendid;
whatever needs repairs is fixed, even if it is a watch that must
"keep moving"; a neighbor's yard is unkempt, though the word
literally means uncombed; a bunch of girls are mad because it
rains on their picnic. Such use of words takes all definitene.
all accuracy, all force out of them.


What words in the following sentences are not suited to the
ideas they are meant to convey?

1. She has an awfully good mother.

2. The roads were terribly muddy.

3. He has a perfectly divine voice.
I. The new hats are disgusting.


5. That is a splendid pen.

6. I hate fudge.

7. She had a horrid old cat.

8. We got up horribly early this morning.
0. I adore light hair.

10. I just love olives.

11. I loathe this year's fashions.

12. It's a funny thing how many children commit suicide in a year.

I Fse in its correct sense each of the words misused above.

168. The Pompous Style. People who have read and ad-
mired a little- good literature, or pretentious literature which
they suppose to be good, sometimes get the notion that they
can write in a "literary" manner by avoiding simple and natural
words. Thus, instead of "wash" we hear "perform their daily
ablutions." "Retire to his couch" is used for "go to bed."
Some people "perambulate" a while before "partaking of a
sumptuous repast," while others take a walk before dinner.
The pompous tone of these expressions is very objectionable,
and besides they are utterly worn out. A good rule for most
writers is to use ordinary words for ordinary things, particularly
if the extraordinary words they would like to use are copied
from a book.

169. Trite Phrases. Expressions that have been too much
1 are said to be trite. It is convenient to treat such expres-
ua in two groups.

(a) Commercial jargon. A large number of regularly used
expressions have found their way into business letters. Some
of them had a meaning at one time, but have long ago ceased
to be more than forms. Business has no time for any expres-
sion which will not bear its share of the work. Among these
useless expressions are the following:

. beg to advise fine line

.( -
sible in this narrow compass to list a large proportion of these
extravagances. The following exercise may serve to put the
student on his guard. He will probably be able to add many
more expressions to those li>ted below.

One special case is worth separate attention. In both
speaking and writing, people often begin a "that" clause and,
because a few modifiers follow the conjunction, repeat it farther
along in the sentence, as in the following:

He had often promised me that after he had accomplished his purpose
that he would "take life easy."


Which words are unnecessary in the following common

erase it out school will close at 2 P.M. so as
this here that there to enable

away down deep not a one

I'm saving it for to have Christ- kill it dead

mas. admit you in

latter end of August in the suburbs of the city

return bark 3 P.M. Saturday afternoon

sang a vocal solo seldom ever

widow woman from whence

completely surrounded on all sides had ought to do it


the reason was because \Yhere is it at?

the other is more preferable Later on they joined their offices
universally by all people together to the mutual ad-

do it over again vantage of both.

Hearing final completion I shall first begin

a new beginner equally as guilty as you

standing alone by itself smell of these flowers

pet off at about Tenth Street still have it yet

take it off of the table smallest of any

173. Slang. In the use of slang the main requirement is
temperance. There are very few people who do not use it
somewhat, and there are thousands who injure themselves
and their material welfare by excessive use of slang. Some-
times a slang word is valuable in expressing a shade of mean-
ing. But slang is dangerous; it is salt and pepper, not bread
and butter. It should be used consciously and the user should
indicate that he knows it is questionable for example, by
quotation marks in writing and by special emphasis in speech..

Most boys allow slang to dwarf their vocabularies. It is
much easier to say that a story is a "peach" than that it is
subtle, that a refrain is a "peach" rather than plaintive, or
that a girl is a "peach" rather than that she is dainty or naive.
And so subtle and plaintive and naive never enter the boy's
vocabulary, because of the tyranny of an inefficient, plebeian
slang word.

On the other hand, there are many occasions when a slang
expres.-ion can be very useful. Some of these popular expres-

18, because of their rugged figure or their pat character-
ization, pass into good English; others remain as a kind of
reputable slang. "Get down to brass tacks" seems to be
passing into a reputable English idiom. "He couldn't deliver
on the other hand, will probably never be king's
i-h, although it so aptly meets a want that it may become

Tin- point for the student- to remember is that the bold
or b of slang will injure him materially and socially,

that a moderate use of t IK um i- not always undesirable


and may even be advantageous, but that no one ought to use
any slang unless he is able to express the same idea in clear,
reputable English.

174. Colloquial Carelessness. Many people speak much

more loosely than they write. They use expressions not

found in good writing and not heard from careful people.
Among these colloquialisms are:

high-falutin seems like

ornery you all

waren't you 'uns

hem's it's you haint

I like to died a-laughin' nint

looky put near (pretty nearly)

horned look it (look at this)

Avoid the use of the following words:

party (for one person) fionts

Doc. 1 Impolite abbrevia- pants
Prof. / tions of titles


Use in sentences the correct words for which the following
are often wrongly used:

stold (past of steal) blowed

indecided thro wed

aint lengthways

casuality busted

preventative prowed

illy alright

secondhanded 1 complected

doubtlessly pardner

speciality their's

firstly cuss

disremember cussed

unbeknown cussing

dove (past of dive) bursted

brung leave (after just as)

suspicion (verb) haint

1 Left-handed ami hioh-hnnded are correct, but not offhanded or underhanded. Off-
haml and undirhand are the proper forma.


het. attackted
drownded wonst (or oncet)

conceity nowherea

ketch overly

ketcher muchly

again (the wall) hisself


The following theme was handed in just as it is printed.
Its greatest fault is wordiness, but in this exercise all errors
the teacher found are to be noted.


There are very few people who find much pleasure in going to the
dentist. One day when I had a tooth-ache I went to the dentist, but
found him busy so I made myself comfortable by going in the reception
room and making myself as comfortable as possible with a magazine and
easy chair.

I was beginning to get interested in the story I was reading and for-
getting my tooth-ache, but I begin to hear mysterious noises from the
office. There were cracking, scraping noises not very pleasing to listen
to, and I don't imagine very pleasant to the patient by the ah's and oh'a
coming from there.

By the time I had heard this my tooth-ache was about gone, but the
dentist comes in and says, well you are next to be amused. He might
a an nisi nu: to him but it wasent in the least amusing to me.

1. Cast out unnecessary words in the above; the teacher
found twenty-two.

2. Find a change of tense.
Find a wrong verb form.

4. Find a preposition in the place of a verb.

5. Find omission of quotation marks (three cases).
Find :i misspelled word.

7. Find a small letter which should be a capital.

8. Fiii'l a wrongly used preposition.

9. (Yitici/.e the punctuation.

175. Interesting Words. All living languages grow con-
tinually. Sometimes word- change their meanings in t

v that i> interesting. /


meant originally to wind, or work into (cf. in, into; sinuous,
winding). Now it is seldom used in that way except in
literary English. Insinuate ordinarily means to give an im-
pression, usually a bad one, by leading to an inference rather
than by direct statement. In "Bedlam broke loose" we have
an interesting word. Bedlam is a corruption of Bethlehem, the
name of the first insane hospital founded in London. Wretch
was formerly a term of endearment, and the most common
meaning of let was to hinder. These are but a few illustrations
of the interest you will find, whenever you consult a dictionary,
in noting the history of the word you are looking up.


\Vh;it history or interesting fact is suggested by each of the
following words?





















guillotine journal Cheapside (a street in London)

176. Reading as an Aid to the Vocabulary. During the
earlier period of a pupil's life he will, of course, have read the
lighter literature, consisting generally of stories of adventure.
This is as it ought to be. However, after he has reached the
age of fifteen or sixteen his taste for reading should undergo
a change.

One of the valuable accomplishments of a good business man
is a fund of general information. He may to advantage know
the main facts about the most popular sports. He should be
informed as to current events, politics, railroad affairs, crop
conditions, and a thousand other matters that affect busine
in general and his own business in particular.

Obviously he cannot get his information from mere stori<--. His reading must take a more serious turn. He should begin to take an interest in the special articles appearing in the better THE VALUE OF THE WORD 251 magazines, and in some of the many books that strive to keep us all abreast with the progress of the world. He will learn therefrom of health conditions, labor unions, wars, important people, something of geography and history, inventions, dis- coveries, business system, and the things of life worth while. Naturally his vocabulary will be much broadened. Wide read- ing has come to be a requirement of business success. EXERCISE 167 Look through three magazines for the current month. What do you find in them that you think you ought to know? List five magazines that you consider worth while; five which, from the standpoint of information, are hardly worth reading. What is the nature of the field covered by the following named periodicals? The Cosmopolitan Outing Popular Mechanics Ainslees The Atlantic Monthly The Century The Literary Digest The World's Work Collier's The Etude The Outlook Life The Saturday Eve- System The Appeal to Reason ninp ! The Country Gentle- The Scientific Ameri- Physical Culture man can Discuss with your teacher other magazines which you con- sider good. QUESTIONS ON CHAPTER XVII 1. V> vonLs for the husim- man he compared to tools for the

>u use teach correctly'.' All the other \vonLs mentioned in

.; I !.'. dot - thfl - use of word values become dulled?
1. Why is a pomjMms ti
5. V -88?

i> v -ant by superfluous won !>' lllust:


7. To what extent is it safe for you to use slang? What kind of slang
is particularly harmful?

8. What is the meaning of the word colloquial?

9. What kind of magazine articles ought a boy or girl of sixteen to



177. Importance of the Newspaper. The newspaper is
one of the most important institutions of our age. Next to the
school it is the world's greatest educator. It pictures distant
lands, explains inventions, proclaims discoveries, and dis-
cusses policies. It acts as a merciless scourge to the wrong-
doer, and is itself often an agent of unfairness and evil. When
dishonest it poisons the very source of a people's information.
Yet, good or bad, everybody reads it. The morning paper is
delivered at the breakfast table, to be followed by fresh editions
of afternoon papers every few hours during the day.

The chief business of the newspaper is to tell the news so
that we can understand it. While there are, in newspapers,
conspicuous examples of ungrammatical English, of slang,
and of other objectionable forms of expression, the better
journals are on the whole written in good style. The reporter's
task is to give information; the editor insists that it be con-
densed information: the result is generally clear, compact

While news writers are usually free to express themselves
in their own way, two particularly noticeable methods of treat-
ment are common in news articles. Because imitation of these
methods tfives interesting and valuable practice in composition,
they will be explained in some detail in the following sections.

178. Plain Facts with a "Lead." When the nature of a
piece of news is such that a plain statement of fact is what
readers will particularly appreciate, the writer begins with a
sentence called the "lead" in which he states, as clearly and
forcefully as possible, the most important fact. By means of
this sentence the reader can decide, with a minimum of atten-
tion, whether it is worth while for him to proceed with the



details. For instance, suppose a reporter has the following
facts about a school fire:

All pupils safe.

Many wraps and books burned.

Safety due to fire drill.

Principal and teachers cool and quick-witted.

Origin of fire, boiler explosion.

Parkersburg High School.

Fire broke out at 2:45 p.m.

Building burned to the ground in forty minutes.

Fire department arrived in ten minutes.

There was no panic.

The reporter's task is to get these facts into a compact para-
graph which will give all the information in the fewest words.
Tin- lir>( sentence or "lead" in this case should give the main
fact. Subsequent sentences should give details in the order
of their importance, or in some cases the order in which they
happened. Clearly the most important bit of news is that
the Parkers! mru; High School is destroyed. The "lead" then
might be:

Parkers! >urg, 111., Her. U. The Parkersburg High School burned to

the ground yesterday afternoon in just forty minutes.

The order of importance of the remaining facts would be,
possibly :

Safety of pupils due to drill and coolness of teachers.

Loss of wraps.

Origin of fire time, work of the fire department.

The completed small news item might then take a form
similar to the following :

Parkersburg, 111., Dec. 12. The Parkersburg High School burned to
the ground yesterday afternoon in just forty minutes. Despite the fierce-
ness of the blaze, every pupil escaped unharmed, owing to the cool-headed-
ness of Principal Brown and his teachers, and the efficiency of their fire
drills. There was no panic, yet few pupils had time to save their books
or wraps. The fire started at 2:45 p.m. from an explosion of a boiler, and
although the fire department arrived in ten minutes, the fire was beyond



Organize the following facts into a one-paragraph news item.
Pick out the "lead" and make it the first sentence. Use as few
words as possible (but do not omit a's or the's), and give the
number of words at the bottom of the page. The three pupils
telling the whole story in the fewest words should write their
work upon the board for class criticism.

Sparta, Ind., Nov. 9.
Boys hunting rabbits.

Hammer of shotgun caught on a wire fence.
Boys were climbing through the fence.
Charles Wright shot in left shoulder.
He may live.

He was shot by Michael Rankin.
Rankin carried Wright two miles to a telephone.
A physician was called.
Wright was taken to his home.

Probably only the small size of the shot saved the boy from
instant death.


Write the following news item completely in fewer than
seventy-five words.

stberg, Ohio, April 9.
A railroad wreck.
The engineers of both engines and the fireman of the switch engine


Five passengers injured, none seriously.
Youngstown express ran into the switch engine.
The morning WHS very foggy.
The express had been fifteen minutes late, but had made up time

bydropping an express car at Horton, instead of unloading it.

!i niL'iiif thought he had time to cr

Accident at 8:15 a. in., April !>.

179. Extended News Items. If a news item longer than

paragraph is wanted, the subject should be divided into

natural divisions and a paragraph given to each. Suppose it


is desired to write somewhat more fully on the topic of Exercise
169. There might well be two paragraphs:

(a) The facts the collision, deaths, injuries.

(b) The causes fog, "making up lost time.

If still more details were available, it would be possible to
make, say, five paragraphs:

(a) The collision time, trains involved, number and kind of coaches.

(b) The damage dead (by name), the injured, extent of injuri< given. (c) Local conditions fog, switch tracks on both sides of the main line. Engineer Hnrnn learns from Station Agent Cummins that the express is fifteen minutes late out of Spellman, five miles beyond Hnrton. (d) Reasons for the fast train's making up time. (e) Station Agent Cummins to lose his job for giving out information to the operating department. Yardmast- r MacGregor is to be question' EXERCISE 17O (a) Write a news item of one paragraph to go with the fol- lowing heading: Automobile Bandits Hold up a Cigar Stop-. (b) Write a two-paragraph news item suggested by the following subject: Wee Freddie Ryan, unseen, rides half a mile on the cowcatcher of the Limited. (c) Write a three-paragraph news item with appropriate headlines, on the subject: Famous French war aviator Joubert to lecture Friday evening at the Walker Opera House. (Give some imaginary details of his history.) 180. The "News Story." 1 The purpose of what we have been calling the "news item" is entirely practical. Often, how- ever, the value and interest of a piece of news may be increased if it is treated somewhat in the manner of a short story. Here 1 It is customary among newspaper men to call almost any sort of news article a "story," yet it seems worth while to discriminate as in Section 180. XKWSPAPKH AND MACIA/JXE WRITING 257 interest, rather than information, is the main consideration. The beginning must attract attention, of course; but the story will usually be spoiled if the main point, the climax, the essence of the news, is given at the beginning, as in the ordinary sort of "lead." The story form is commonly used in humorous or very unusual and romantic articles. To distinguish them from plain news items with the practical sort of "lead," we shall call them, for convenience, "news stories." The following is an example: Dr. Jacobs will probably stop his engine the next time he leaves his car on the street while making a call. Yesterday afternoon he left his new sedan standing for a few minutes on the hillside in front of Rice's drug store, with the engine running to keep the car warm. Small boys, headed by eleven-year-old Claude Ballard, tried out the effect of several levers. The result surpassed their greatest expectations when the big car ran down the cigar store Indian in front of Kelley's and went half way through the plate-glass window of the Metropolitan grocery store. Note that the last sentence states the main fact. The first sentences are employed in leading up to the climax. Condensation can often be effected by omitting details at which the reader has a chance to guess. Note the skill with which the writer of the following telephone conversation omitted all of one speaker's remarks: AS TOLD OVER THE TELEPHONE "Please, marm, gimme number two hund'ed an' 'leven .... Is dat you, Marse Henry? .... Yessir, dis is Abe. I dun ring yer up, r tell you about Shoe. Shoe, he dun balk down yer on Broad Street, sir." "Bout a hour, sir.". "Yeseir, I bus' him in de head." "I dun wear dc whip handle out on him, sir." "Yeseir. I kick him 'bout ciirht times, sir.' I would h.-i' kick urn some mo' but I hu't me big to on um do 1 i.irk urn." 258 VOCATIONAL KNCJLISH "Twis' he tail? No, sir, not dis chile. A gemman from New York, he twis' he tail." "No, sir, I don't think he dead. De doctor take him 'way in de amb'lance." "Yessir, it was sure foolish." "M;trse Henry, I done set fire under Shoe." De harness? Dun hu'n de harness clean off urn." "De cart? Yes sir, dun bu'n de cart too, sir, all 'cept one wheel, sir." ir, I git de feed out fust, sir." "Marso Henry, is you want me to come back to de store and go to work, or mils' I wait for Shoe to move?" 1 EXERCISE 171 Make a short "news story" to fit the following conditions: Hungry burglar sets down his bag of valuables to eat a piece of mince pie in the pantry of the third-etory flat at 6126 Pleasant Avenue. Mrs. Steffan deftly locks the pantry door and telephones the police. Nothing lost but the pie. EXERCISE 172 Make a "news story" of the following, ending with an explanation of what is being done. Give details, names, etc. Many poor children write to Santa Glaus. Postmaster Bredin opens these letters and puts them in the hands of people who will play Santa Claus to the little ones. EXERCISE 173 Change the following "news item" into a "news story:" Chicago, Nov. 9. Patrick McGrnth, a watchman on the Pennsylvania elevation, came home suddenly last night in time to attend his own wake. In a switch engine accident Monday at 90th Street, a laborer was killed. The remains were positively identified by Mrs. McGrath as those of her husband. '"L." in "Walnuts and Wine," LippincoU'a, Oct., 1906. NEWSPAPER AND .MAGAZINE WRITING 259 EXERCISE 174 Change the following into a simple news item with a "lead": Little Mary Tolman wept bitterly last night over a very great mis- fortune. Her mother, too, could hardly keep back the tears, although she strove with all the power of a widow who has faced life with two small children. Just when Mary had finished school and secured a position, adding ciirht dollars a week to their little income, this misfortune had come upon thorn. Yesterday afternoon Mary had been sent hurriedly to the bank with three hundred dollars collected a few minutes before closing hours. In her hurry she had lost her handbag and the money. Frantic with mi grief, she had not dared return to the office. Someone rapped at the door. It was Mrs. Barnes, who rents three rooms of her house at 224 E. 43rd Street to the Tolmans. "Some one wants Mary on the phone," she said. It was a stranger, Mrs. Louise Eastman, a nurse in the Ingleside Hospital, with the message that the handbag and contents were safe. Query: How did Mrs. Eastman get Mrs. Barnes's telephone number? Is it desirable to explain all details? What should be omitted? EXERCISE 175 Make a "news story" of the following: At the close of the Easter concert of the Boston Symphony Orchestra : light, Hans Mahl, a poorly dressed, gray-haired man about seventy years old, was found unconscious in a gallery seat. He was probably ing, and the climb had been too much. He died at the Holy Cross ital an hour later. Papers found upon him proved that he had once been the conductor of the Municipal Orchestra at Strassburg. 181. The Editorial. Probably the simplest type of editorial takes the form of a sermon with a news item "lead" as a text. The MTinmi, of course, need not be religious; in fact it is seldom so, but is concerned generally with politics or public policy. An example of a simple form of editorial follows: In thf All-Man P.r others' Hospital yesterday afternoon, little Charlie n l.ittrn by :i stray dog while
u in the street.

How tonu I>eople of ing to to!

doge at law? Trur, we already hav an onlmam-c making nni//lin


of all dogs compulsory, but it is not enforced. The adage has it that
everybody's business is nobody's business, but it certainly ought to be our
;tff:iir as a great and rich city to see that every stray dog is killed and every
other dog in the city properly muzzled.

Note that the condition which inspired this editorial is
simply the "lead" of a news item. Of course the "text" is not
ul ways exactly in the form of a "lead," but in most cases the
text could easily be put into the form of a news item.


Write a two-paragraph editorial on the following news item :

Chicago, July 11. Dr. Raymond Stettson of the Health Depart-
ment stated before the Ridge Woman's Club today that fully sixty per
rent <-f the children in Chicago under sixteen years of age hove teeth which, for the sake of the children's health, should be cared for by a dentist. Suggestion: In one paragraph urge the establishment of dental clinics in the schools. In the second paragraph urge the parents to sacrifice a vacation or other pleasure, for the good of the child's health. EXERCISE 177 Write an editorial of several paragraphs on the following news item: La Porte, Ind., Oct. 16. Charles Miller, a near-sighted fourteen- y ear-old boy, drove a big automobile through a crowd of children in front of the Raynard School today, seriously injuring Edna Bauer and Lillie Thomas. EXERCISE 178 Write an editorial on the following news item: A policeman found eleven-year-old Fred Watson and twelve-year- old "Butch" Baer hanging around a pool room and smoking at 11:30 Monday night. The boys were taken home, but their parents did not seem much disturbed by the matter. EXERCISE 179 Let every member of the class bring for the next recitation a news item (real or imaginary) which will serve as the text of an editorial. From the ten best, let the class choose for the subject of an editorial to be handed in the next day. XEWSI'AI'KK AXO MAUA/IXK WRITING 261 EXERCISE ISO Let each pupil clip from a newspaper an editorial (not too long) and bring it to class. Let him practice reading the' editorial until he is sure that he can make it interesting to the class. 182. Condensing the Magazine Article. Our good maga- zines are full of articles that are both valuable and interesting. Condensing or summarizing such an article on some timely subject is very valuable practice. The primary purpose of such a report is to bring out the most important facts of the original, but it is a failure if it does not also interest your classmates. J irst read the article very carefully. Try to grasp the things of importance. Next put them in their best order so that the hearer will get the thoughts in a succession easily understood. Plan one paragraph for each important point. Don't try to report on an article which you do not yourself enjoy. The class is to mention promptly any failure to hear or understand. EXERCISE 181 Oral. Report on some invention or instrument which can be illustrated by a drawing on the board. EXERCISE 182 Oral. Make a careful examination of the contents of a copy of the Literary Digest. Explain clearly to the class just what the publishers are trying to do. EXERCISE 183 Make a written condensation of some interesting article in a current maiia/ine, using the method explained in the second paragraph of Section 182. EXERCISES 184, 185, 186 the following farts (IS I news item, as a news story, (186) as part of an editorial which you are to wi ( 'oil-- Iin, < ii<>, DIT. 9.


He was first blindfolded.

He was told that he was to be branded with a hot iron.

An icicle was drawn across his bare shoulders.

He is in a sanitarium, suffering from nervous prostration.


Answer the following questions from observation of any
issue of a good daily newspaper:

1. On what page are the editorial.-?

2. I low many editorials do you find?

3. List the subjects of these :irticlc>.

4. Do you find the writer referring to himself as // As we? Why?

5. Outline the main points in one of the editorials.



183. The Growth of Business. It is the fortune of the
'lit generation to take part in the greatest business develop-
ment of all time. To the pupil who reads this page the type-
writer and the multigraph, the illustrated catalog, and the
full-page advertisement must seem quite the established order
>f the world as if they, like trees and hills, had always been.
But they have not always been in fact most of them are less
than a quarter of a century old. With the telephone, the
automobile, and the adding machine, they have made the last
two or three decades seem to many the most wonderful of all
the years. Within one generation, business outgrew its three-
story shell and now calls for twenty, thirty, and even forty-

y buildings to house it. In a single generation villages
have grown to cities full of activity and opportunity. Truly
this is a great age for boys and girls.

A large part of the great increase of business is the result
of the development of the business letter. Letter writing is
old, reaching back beyond the dawn of history when men

vod messages on stone and wood. But modern business
let toy writing is young so young that the most effective
methods are not yet sufficiently understood.

184. Advantages of the Letter in Business. The letter has
thr< ualitics cheapness, definiteness, and permanence. :i n hundred letters may be written at smaller cost and in time than would bo required for u single personal call. r two men have miked over a matter, oral agreement iered sufficiently definite, and the understanding; 1 in wril third jrreat quality, permanence. h the fili: n, which involves the keeping piee of all important !< 'Thai will l.e all riuht 21)4 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH if you'll write me a letter about it," says one man to another. He wants his letter files to carry a complete history of the transaction. Some business houses are adopting the practice of making carbon copies on the backs of the letters answered, and thus saving paper, filing space, and time. EXERCISE 188 Write a composition of two hundred words on: The History of the Postal Service in America. Get your information from more than one source. Do not under any circumstances ropy an entire sentence from an encyclopedia or a history. 185. Appearance of Business Correspondence. All good firms are now very careful about the appearance of their letters. They know that the letter represents the firm, its habits and its policies. They know that poor stationery and slovenly form put the business house under suspicion of being unreliable and careless. No one realizes today more keenly than the man of business, that first impressions of men ami things are lasting, and he knows how long it takes to cor- rect an unfavorable impression. Routine letters of whatever length are now ordinarily written on the standard 8J^ x 11 paper, which allows for a wide and orderly margin, and con- tained in the standard 3}^ x 6j/ envelope unless the letter is too bulky for three foldings. Sometimes, for very short letters, half sheets- 8K x 5J^ are used. But most important, these let i ers bear no evidence of erasures and are not soiled. Neither are they freakish in form or color. The printer of today who is not an expert in balance and taste in business stationery can not long hold the better commercial trade. 186. The Writer of a Letter. There is an old saying that water cannot rise above its source; obviously a well written letter must have had a competent author. Or to put it the other way, only a person of some attainments can produce an effective letter. LETTER WRIT1NC -Jiif, The first quality required of a correspondent is, of course, intelligence, both of the natural kind sometimes called common sense, and the kind acquired by education. No business is entirely separate from all the other activities of the world; on the contrary, business interests cross one another in a very com- plicated way. The correspondent, then, needs to know men and measures and methods; in other words, he must be well- informed. But wealth of information alone is not enough; the corre- spondent must be able to write. He must be able to tell what he knows in an orderly, accurate way, so that others can under- stand. A report of the Bar Association of the City of New York gives as one big reason for the clogging of the courts, the inability of many lawyers so to frame the language of a case that the courts can proceed with dispatch. In other words, there are many lawyers who cannot put what they know on paper. And there are many business men who know what they mean but "can't find words to express it." Too often the pupil in the public school leans helplessly against the seat and ;hat he knows but can't explain. Unless he learns to explain he cannot write good business letters. The main pur- of this book is to aid the pupil in gaining the power to make other people understand. Another desirable quality in business letters is human sympathy. We have always had well-informed men, and men who could express themselves in a masterful way; but few, until the l;t-t deeade, have realized the tremendous power of human sympathy in business transactions. Business letters of . yean airotoo of ten followed a set form; "esteemed favor," "hand you herewith," "hoping to hear from you ud other regular phrases were very common. .,d letter began somewhat after this manner. 'd and contents noted, and in reply ' ief fault with these stock expressions iimatieal imeoinplet ene ) is that they are too formal and nl. They might U> written as well by


an enemy as by a friend. Business letters must be friendly
in tone: true, you need not stop to visit with your man; on
the other hand, a good business man is never so much in a
hurry that he cannot be thoughtful and courteous. While
business as a whole may seem heartless and harsh, you must
not forget that it is operated by men and women who, like you,
want friends and appreciate favors; who, like you, will try to
return a smile or a thoughtful act; and if you would succeed
in business you must learn to think of the stranger as your

187. Qualities of a Good Business Letter. Business letters,
of course, touch a thousand different subjects and register a
hundred different moods, but there are several qualities which
almost every one of them ought to show. The most important
of these qualities are directness, completeness, individuality,
punctuality, and courtesy.

188. Directness. Without being so abrupt as to seem
discourteous tion 192), the business letter should come
to the point in the first few lines. Most business men, at least
those worth while, are busy and have little time for things off
their usual course. You must not neglect, however, to make the
first few lines self-explanatory, for in most cases your reader
will have been thinking of other things and will need to be
directed to the subject of the letter.

Examine carefully the following examples:

only introduction) (A better form)

Dear Sir: Dear Sir:

\Ye rearranged our office last We ask your pardon for our

week in order to take care of the delay in answering your letter of

;sed business and to facilitate May 24, due to rearranging our

handling the new business which office,
will doubtless come to us by reason (Eighteen words.)
of the now State law regarding Fire
Insurance, and, in the consequent
disorder, we are sorry to say we
misplaced your letter of May 24.
(Fifty-four words.)




(1) The introduction is too long.

(2) It contains matter of doubtful

interest to the receiver.

(3) The writer should never force

the reader to wade through
an advertisement to get to
the subject.

(.1 poor letter)
Dear Sir:

The goods you sent our firm are
not up to the standard you set in
your letter.


This is indefinite. To a small
merchant it might be clear, but to
a man who writes fifty letters a
day will come these questions
t goods? Which firm? What
letter? When shipped?


(1) This opening is direct.

(2) It makes all necessary ex-


(A better form)
Dear Sir:

The chairs you sent Miller & Co.
Nov. 4 (your invoice No. 47123)
are not up to the standard you set
in your letter to them of Oct. 28.


All data necessary to set the
case before the reader have been
given. It may cost the writer a
little effort to get this informa-
tion together, but the resultant
courtesy and directness are worth
the effort.

Letters will be very much more direct if paragraphed
correctly. The habit of putting everything concerning one
subject into one compact paragraph aids the reader in "getting
at" the matter (see Section 142).

"When you're through sit down," is good advice to the
letter writer as well as to the after-dinner speaker. No general
"Hoping to hear from you," etc., is needed at the end of a
. mcn-ly as a concluding device (see Section 205).

189. Completeness. It is often difficult for us to reali/e

1 a topic wliich to us is perfectly clear, may be obseur-
another. There are two general causes of failure to give nil
necessary de-tail in a business letter. The first cause of incom-
plet- I a failure to realize the ditliculti.

the "other fellow.'' i may know a hundred times as much

aboi. -'ibjoct as he knows about, it, and you must "put

yourself in his place" to i 'analions should



1)0 made. For instance, your language may be entirely too
technical for him. You must not forget that you are writin.u;
to the receiver.

(A bad l>t ti'r]

The Reverend A. K. Jones
Dear Sir:

In re my coming lecture in your
church, have you A.C. or D.C.,
and will the ordinance allow a
double decker of two twenty-fives?

This is too technical

(.4 belt t, material, or color

is st;it( i. Nothing is said about
i irpose is it a dress shoe or a
work shoe that is wanted?

(A better form)
Dear Sir:

Send me one pair of men's shoes,
Style A242, patent leather, size
8D. Enclosed find eight dollars.

(Commendation )
As far as it goes this letter is
complete and there should be no
difficulty in filling the order, pro-
vided, of course, that the address
is given.

Before sealing & letter, examine it to make sure that it is
dated, that your own address is clearly stated, that you have
omitted no necessary detail of description or direction, and
that the language is such that your correspondent cannot


190. Individuality. Some years ago it was not uncommon

to find, occasionally in offices, but more often in homes, a. book

called by some such name as The Ready Letter Writer. This

1 M >k was intended to furnish forms for business, friendly, and

i love letters, and one wishing to write a letter had only to

turn to the index to find, "a parent writing to a school teacher,"

"a nurse to her absent mistress," "a gentleman to his banker,"

opy what he found printed, with a few necessary clianiivs

r conditions. Such books have almost disappeared, for,

to say, no one today would think of using a form letter

for friendly correspondence. Probably nobody regards any

'. Hh the same derive and kind of esteem; hence a

form letter would fail to adapt it-elf to the myriad ditYeivnn-

and delicacies <>f friendship. Business, too, had its AVle to list a dozen don'ts touching courtesy,

but a more profitable paragraph will treat of its source.

from gnod intentions toward all men. If you

are cherishing hatred of any one, if you ai .med to

.plain, or criticize, or gossip, you \\-ill be handicapped as a

ad'-nt. Outvie .f lnioliteiiess? Is it advisable to be polite in
order to get more business? Can a man learn politeness from books?

1. "What is "half thinking"? Can the writer expert the reader to
understand unless the letter originated in a clear-cut understanding?
"It takes a long time to explain something you don't understand."

.">. If individuality is a desirable quality of a letter, why not use square
envelopes, address them across the end, and have them made of pink paper?

<">. \Yhat would you say characterizes t he gentleman in correspondence;
i. t ., what qualities should he h-


Write a brief letter explaining to a younger brother the
of a good business letter.


1. How long has the telephone been in commercial use'.' The type-

2. What reasons can you advance for the tremendous growth in busi-
ness during the last two decades?


3. What three advantages has the business letter? Explain.

4. Why is the appearance of a business letter so important?

5. What are some of the qualities of a good correspondent?

6. Can you name the qualities of a good business letter?

7. What is meant by directness?

8. When is a letter complete?

9. What must be the condition of the writer's thoughts to lead him
to dictate a complete letter?

10. What is meant by individuality hi a letter?

11. Why is it bad business to delay a business reply?
1'J. How can the writer show courtesy?



193. The Stenographer and the Employer. One of the
really hopeless and helpless human beings is the poor sten-
ographer who blots and misspells and mis-spaces and misunder-
st aiids. She is a failure at the only thing she is expected to do.
Whether it is her fault, or the fault of the school, or the fault
of her parents, or of sickness or poverty, makes no difference
when she brings a poor piece of work to a busy man. Whether
or not she deserves censure, one thing is pretty sure she will
got plenty of it. A busy man. has not time to correct, to advise,
and to instruct his stenographer, and it would be bad bush
for him to undertake teaching in addition to his other duties.
The girl will be discharged, to begin again that most forlorn
task looking for another position. The employer will try
again and airain, until he finds a stenographer whose judgment
and knowledge he can trust.

Morever, many employers are careless or unskilled in com-
position; their letters, if written exactly as dictated, would
make a bad impression. A competent stenographer, therefore.
>hould be able to correct errors and improve awkward phrasing.

There would be fewer incompetent stenographers if all knew
the accepted principles of letter form explained in the following
pages. These are matters of prevailing custom; serious
departure from "good form" makes a writer seem careless or

194. The Margin. All letters should have a substantial
margin. The exact width is largely a matter of taste, but not
less than an inch and a half on 8^ x 1 1 paper, the most comm< >n
business size, is desirable. The width and arrangement of the
margin must be considered with relation to the size and shape
of the sheet, just as the mat about a picture is related to the




The following letter illustrates very well the proper balance
of writing and margin:

-,10054 food Street
-.Chicago. Illinois
April 83, 1917 *

Jlr. R. K. Tabor
Confluence. Pa.

Dear Mr. Tabor :

I recall that when I left Pennsylvania
In 1892 there was much excellent timber land In
the southwestern part of the state, especially
In Somerset and Payette counties. I have since
been told that most of this has been logged.

In your opinion Is Isnd sufficiently
cheap, say along the Youghlogheny River, to .make
reforestation profitable? I are expecting now of
course only a general answer.

'ery truly.


1. That neither the heading nor the signature runs into
the margin.

2. That there is a margin at the bottom. It is better to
second sheet than to crowd the lower margin.

I'i'ly the dotted lines. Note that part of the pleasing

quality of the arrangement is due to the parallel slant of the

In the so-called "block form" these parallel linos an-

|Mr. R.E. Tabor

' 'on!:

j 10054 Wood Stirrt
| Chicago, Illinois
!April2:*, I'M 7



1. Study the margins (mats) on photographs and pictures,
(a) What is the relative area of picture and mat? Compute

this for any three well-mount ed pictures.

(h) What do you learn about the lower margin? Is it
larger or smaller than the upper margin? Measure three
mounted photographs or pictures.

(<) Which is larger, the upper or the lower part of the printed letters .B and *SV What is your conclusion regarding lower margins? 2. Does it pay to spend time and money for decorative effect only? Look about you. How much of architecture is decorative only? Why does a church have a spire? What ul purpose is served by the buttons on n man's coat sle Would not a plain shirtwaist keep a girl just as warm us any other? Why should we spend time and paper on margins, alignments, and form in letter-? 195. The Heading. When no printed letter-head is u-ed, the beading should give three thin. he street and number ept in small towns); (b) the city and state; (c) the date. KXAMIM.K: 10054 Wood Street Chicago, Illinois MavLM, 1017 Observe these general instructions : 1. Write your address. This is an important matter. Big mail-order houses employ mail openers to examine the incoming letters to make sure that the writer has given his address. Where the address has been omitted they try to the name of the city and state from the postmark on the envelope. But too often they fail and the customer complain- bitterly, although the fault is really all his own. 2. .Don't forget the date. Many letters are filed by the date of writing. Sometimes the date is very important. 3. Never employ figures for the month. Writing 5/24 1 7 for May 24, 1917, throws the burden of translating the figures upon the receiver of the letter. This increases the difficulty of DETAIL* OF LETTER FORM 277 filing by date, since every date must be thought out. Your reader will not appreciate anything which saves you work at his expense. 4. Don't forget that a period is required at the end of an abbreviation. 5. Commas may be located by the following device: Suppose the heading to be written out in full thus 10054 >d St. [in] Chicago [in] Illinois [on] May 24 [of] 1917.
Replace the bracketed words with commas, and the punctuation
will be correct.

There is now a tendency to omit punctuation at the ends of
linos, both in the heading and in the salutation. This seems
t o 1 >e a reasonable tendency because the tabulated form indicates
that each new line is another word group. This practice is
adhered to throughout this book. There are, however, two

ptions: a colon is used after Dear Sir (or equivalent words)
in the salutation, and an abbreviation is followed by a period
even at the end of a line.

\MPLES: Winfield, Mass.

Mr. John Jones Dec. 22, 1910

Creston, Iowa
Dear Sir:

6. Write May 24, 1881; not May 24th, 1881. It is not

\ t < ) write th, st, or d after a date. (It may be neces- number e. g., 3d row; or in the body of a letter i/our Utter of the 3d.) 7. It is better to write out city names. Abbreviations of s of cities are not well known. The greater accuracy is worth the rt and besides, abbreviations in business letters

fallen inio disfavor.

196. The Decorative Heading. Some firms are willing,

for the sake of the appearance of their letters, to go to con-

uble in arranging the items of the heading in a

decorative way. In general, novelty should not be attempted

by any but persons of taste, it bring far better to follow the

\vhieh. iii IMS, is founded ( ,n reason. How.


if used wisely, the following arrangements of the heading will
often justify the extra time required:

December Wednesday

Twelfth August

Nineteen Twentieth

Eighteen January 1915

December Tenth October Sixth

1916 Nineteen Nineteen



Fourth NINE

1914 1910

197. The Person Addressed. In business letters, always
write the full address of the person or persons to whom you are
writing, at the beginning of the letter. Often letters are
opened by people for whom they were not meant. The
address and name will help to set the reader right.

Kx AMPLE: Mr. Charles M. Clarke

321 Forty-fourth St.
I)es M nines, la.

1. Be sure to give every person a title. This applies also
to personal firms. Corporate organizations (that is, companies
with such a general name that one loses sight of the individuals)
are addressed without a, title.

EXAMPLES: Dr. A. J. Kemp

Mr. M. M. Wright
Messrs. .Bell & Fisher
But: The Standard Oil Company


Do not employ two titles, except for churchmen.

(Incorrect) (Correct)

Mr. Charles M. Clarke, Esq. Mr. Charles M. Clarke (The form

harles M. Clarke, M.D. Esq. is disappearing in America.)

Dr. Charles M. Clarke
Charles M. Clarke, M. D.
The Reverend (not Rev.) Jamos II.
Stewart, D.D.

But a description of the person's position may follow a
name preceded by a title.

EXAMPLE : Mr. Henry K. Ewalt, President

AYashington Heights Savings Bank
Chicago, 111.

2. Be careful to write the addressee's name exactly as he
writes it. This is one of the finer touches of politeness and
is almost sure to be appreciated. Suppose the addressee signs
his name

M. Clarke

It would then be inadvisable to write any of the following

(a) Mr. Chas. M. Clarke

(b) Mr. C. M. Clarke

(r) Mr. Charles M. Clark

Form (c) is decidedly impolite. Extreme care must be
I in the spelling of a man's name. An error justifies
the inference that the writer has paid very little attention to
the reader, and no man likes a slight of this kind.

In s ee the word Company is written out; in others

it is al>lrevi;tted. Try to remember the individual use (or
look it up when in doubt). Note the following correct nan

Thr Cr

On Co.

Century Co.


3. The punctuation and arrangement of the name and
address should be as follows (unless the "block form" mentioned
in X, Section 194, is used) :

Mr. Charles M.Clarke
:>21 Forty-fourth St.
Des Moines, Io\v:i

4. Do not allow the house number and the name of a
numbered street to come together as figures.

. Whm the ''Mock form" is used, it should appear in both
the heading and the address, a- in the example in o. Section 194.

198. The Salutation. Dear Sir is the common busings salu-
tation for one person, and d'lntlnm-n, or Dear Sirs, for a firm.

A woman, married or unmarried, should be addressed as
Dear Madam. The plural is Dear Mesdames, or Ladies.

The forms Dear Mr. Brtnni and Dear Miss Case are les< formal and ordinarily are not used except where the relation is one of some degree of friendship or, at least, acquaintance. However, such forms are being employed by some good writers to give the much desired friendly tone. When busine- transacted between friends, salutations, etc., may well be governed by the practices of friendly letters. Such form 'I John or Friend Jones should never be used. 1)( ar Sir, Gentlemen, etc., are usually followed by the colon; less frequently by the comma. The salutation should begin flush with the left margin. 199. The Body of the Letter. Some writers begin the body of the letter with paragraph indention, but the practice of beginning the first sentence of the letter immediately below the end of the salutation is perhaps in most favor. This part of the letter is, of course, the most important. Most of the following points have already been disms-ed and are repeated here for review : DETAILS OF LETTER FORM 281 1. Be sure that you understand your subject fully. 2. Organize the subject; i.e., plan the letter. A mental plan may be sufficient in some cases. 3. Bear in mind the interests of the reader. 4. Come directly to the point. 5. Avoid all trite phrases; among them, same, esteemed favor, hand you herewith, please find enclosed, would say (es- pecially without an expressed subject), contents noted, beg to advise, etc. 6. Be careful of your sentence structure; i.e., your grammar. Finish all words and all sentences save rather in the exactness of your expressions. Avoid abbreviations unless you are per- fectly sure they are used by the best writers in the sort of work you have in hand. 7. Be sure that each sentence cannot mean two things and does mean one thing. 8. Use simple words and plain sentence structure. 9. It is well to avoid the participial construction in the last sentence. Hoping to hear from you at an early date, etc., is ineffective because it has been overworked. May I hear from you within a week? or I shall await your reply with interest, is much better. 10. Many firms use paper without heading for second sheets, but number the sheets and write in the upper left-hand corner, ::unple, To A. M. F. (initials of receiver). 11. A short typewritten letter is preferably double-spaced; but a letter so long as to require more than one page if double- spaced is preferably single-spaced, with double space between paragraphs. 12. It should be the ambition of every man who writes a letter to make that letter entirely his own, and to express in it meaning in a pleasant way. It should be his thought, phrased in an individual way, from the salutation to the c<>n-

200. The Conclusion. The most common ending is Yours
'. It is proper for any bu. Write a complaint to your alderman that the city
valk builders have cut down your tennis backstop, which
a few i: o far out. Tell him that the damai!

dollars and that your club could easily have
d the stop for ten dollars if the members had known of


vc UM



1. A passing automobile lost an extra tire in front of your
home. The number of the machine was K 318, or perhaps
K 818. Write to the proper authorities, giving the date and,
since you are not quite sure of the number, such description
of the machine as you can. Describe the tire (use the nomen-
clature of the market) and add anything else you think

2. On leaving a church social last Tuesday evening (give
date), you found your umbrella replaced by another bearing
the name of Franklin H. Simms on the handle. Write to him.

3. Write to the University of Chicago for two seats for the
Dlinob-Chicago football game. Don't forget any nen -ssary

4. You are a foreigner and have lived in America six year-.
You are called for examination for your second naturalization
papers (final), August Iti. Write to the proper authorities
explaining that your son becomes of age August 1 1, and you
would like your examination before August 11 any
encyclopedia under Naturalization, Laws of I


1. What is the correct margin for an 8H x 11 business letter?

J. What are the reasons against "end punctuation"?

:;. Why is 6/12/18 a poor indication of date?

1. Is Dr. A. M. liri/xint, M. D. a correct use of title- '

"). Is Dear Jones a good salutat ion?

ti. What kind of signature is most easily forged?

7. What are the correct ways for a married woman -elf?



204. The Need of Variety in Expression. Something has
been said in Chapter XIX of the objections to trite phrases in

rs. There remains, then, the task of finding out what is

-idered trite and of substituting other forms. In general,

no one substitute can be found for any hackneyed phrase, for

the substitute itself would then soon become trite. Freshness

of cxprr^iou calls for variety, and variety comes from careful

-ideration of the individual case. One very vital objection

to the old forms of correspondence arises from the fact that the

writer can let "your esteemed favor came duly to hand" slip in

-natically, as the pedestrian avoids a mud puddle, without

( f thought. Thoughtless letters are not good busi-

205. A List of Trite Words and Phrases. Careful attention
to the following is desirable if one would avoid worn-out

too frequently for inform or tell.

(Avoid) (Write)

s to outcome. Pk'use let us know the result.

'/'/, t<> handuael

:,id) (Write)

. '-MilxT 24 at I like what you said in your

letter of November 24; or, The

the chairs you ordered November

-;tiee 24 Were shipped today. .. .

replying to ;i


tin; (Into

the fir.-t Sentence, and make
that sentence work.]



beg very bad.

(Avoid) (Write)

We beg to say.. .. We wish to say.. ..

[This form is a relic of servile [Kven this form may often be

letter writing.] made unnecessary by saying rather

than announcing that you want
to say.]

\\ e beg to remain.. ..
[The whole clause can be omit-
ted, and if its useless concomitant,
linking that we may have a contin n-
nni-i. etc., disappears, it will take
with it, We beg to remain. ]

contents carefully noted- - if you are not in the

habit of noting "content-." and this is an exception. Avoid
1 he entire phrase.

duly unnecessary.

(Avoid) (Write)

Your letter duly at hand. Your letter arrived today (or

omit the expression altogether).

esteemed meant to be Complimentary, but of no value since it
is offered to everybody.


We have your esteemed favor.
[Omit the word. The entire sentence may go without loss.]

favor unless you really mean favor, say letter,
favor us use some less hackneyed form.

(Avoid) (Write)

Will you favor us with a coi I shall appreciate a copy.

hand you literally untrue.

(Avoid) (Write))

We hand you our spring catalog. We are mailing you our spring



herewith overworked.


Enclosed herewith you will find.
[Omit the word.]

hoping, trusting, believing, etc., introducing the last sentence
of a letter trite and ineffective.

(Avoid) (Write)

Hoping to hear from you soon, I I should like to know about this

am.. .. by the middle of the month.

[Or omit the whole sentence.]

/ n, Yours truly relic of other days. I have the honor, sir,
of being, and / am, sir, your obedient servant, and Believe me,
Yours faithfully, have already gone to the scrap heap, and
little will be lost if I am as a prefix to Yours truly joins them.
Yours truly is sufficient after your last regular sentence.

inst., ult., prox. better avoided, since they throw the burden
of difficult reading on the receiver.

(Avoid) (Write)

In your letter of the 16th inst. In your letter of January 16. ...

kind do not use.

ir kind letter.. ..
;f writing to you were a mat-
charity. If your correspond-
is really done you a favor, he
deserves at least a sentence of ap-

; ly overworked.
oblige rovcr\\ < >rked.


Will you kindly oblige us .... Will you do us a favor; or,

Will you please.. ..


our Mr. Brown undignified. Say Mr. Brown, or Mr. Brown,
our representative.

recent date often useless. In general, the date is important
enough for a more exact statement, or it is not important
at all.

* ( Avoid) (Write)

Your letter of recent date. .. . Your letter of January 16; or,

Your letter of last week ....

said an imitation of the legal form.

(Aroid) (Write)

.. . .said letter came too hit <.. .. . this letter came too late. same a dangerous word. "Avoid same as you would the plague," is the instruction of the Crane Company, of Chicago, to its correspondence managers. "Dear Madam:" wrote a Chicago veterinarian, "Your dog's ears are now well and the same can be taken home at any time." Sometimes any reference is unnecessary. (Aroid) (Write) .. .. your Irttemf October 20. .... your let tor of October 20, and in reply to same we wmnt.. .. and in reply we want. .. . Generally, repeating the antecedent of same gives better results. (Aroid) (Write) \Ye have your letter about the \\ '<> have your letter about the

bicycle shipped by us last week: bicycle \ve shipped you last week:

YOU will find the same to be fully you will find it fully equal to ....
equal to .... Or, You will find the bicycl< shipped you last week full}' equal to .... state overworked. Use say or some other synonym. under separate cover overworked. Say You will receive, or We have sent by parcel post. While these forms are longer, there has been such a revolution against triteness that in this case the writer had better avoid the shorter form. MISTAKES IX TIIK LAXCTAGE OF LETTERS 291 valued open to the same criticism as esteemed. we sometimes used successively with / in a puzzling way. We is used far too frequently, probably under the impression that 7 is egotistic. wish to inform a pompous way of saying want to say. We should like to have you know, or some similar form, is probably better than cither. / >'/// avoid the expression.
writer used too frequently to avoid /.
yours 1 not in good use for your letter.

Of course it is not possible to avoid all trite expressions.
Yours truly is a survival of days of lords and kings., But in
spite of its triteness and of the fact that its original meaning is
nn\v altogether gone, it is retained along with Dear Sir in all
business letters, because our customs demand some form of
introduction and leave-taking. In conversation the corre-

cting forms are "Good morning," said regardless of the
weather, and "Goodbye," uttered without a thought of its
original meaning, God be with you. Just as goodbye serves the
spoken language well, so Yours truly finds a useful place in


206. Too Great Familiarity. In a reaction against the
deadening effect of triteness, many writers go to the other

me friendliness so ardent as to amount to familiarity.
Similarly, some writers, in an effort to be catchy and interest-
ing, achieve only vulgarity. They fail to realize that most
men the "touch on the shoulder." Most of us do not

like a stranger to address us by our first names, and nearly
all men resent Dear Brown from any one but a friend. The
quality of reserve increases with education; i. e., a professional

T Knjilish frion 1i:cl ^i-l
.1 a <|iiit.- tock the goods you ordered June

(Twelve words.)


! Prints O being made.

\ memorandum is being sent


1 \\ < are having prints made. (2) We are sending you a mem- orandum. 210. "We," "the Writer," and "I." The feeling, due often to wrong teaching, that a writer should avoid / because it -ft 'ins too egotistic, has caused considerable awkwardness in wording. There is no objection to I in a letter that is, it is not more objectionable in a letter than it is in conversation. MISTAKKS IN T1IK LANGUAGE OF LETTERS 295 Xo one wants to talk long to anybody who shows by his con- versation that he thinks / the most important person in the world. Yet it is necessary for us to speak of ourselves, and the discreet use of / in business letters contributes much to their naturalness and force. The use of the writer to avoid / almost always results in awkwardness. (Distant and unnatural) (Better) The writer spent a few days last I spent a few days last week week on his farm in Texas. on my Texas farm. We is, of course, proper in a letter coming from a firm or a company and not from some individual representing the com- pany ; 1 >ut we should not be used merely as a means of avoiding /.

It is unwise to put / or we before you. For instance, "You
will be far more comfortable in our light weight suits" is
stronger than "We can make you more comfortable if you will
buy one of our light weight suits." It is neither good manners
nor good business to think of yourself first. Translate every
transaction into the experience of the reader, if possible. Keep
the receiver's happiness or gain always before him.


1. What is a hackneyed expression?

-. Why is it impossible to give a definite substitute for such an ex-

an you give two reasons for avoiding the use of ttnnn .'
\. Should the writer avoid the use of If Explain.
.".. Letters which are meant to be "snappy" sometimes take on an
liable quality. What is it'.'

6. Why is undue brevity bad'.'

7. : to use the ne letter on the margin of ;i newspaper.

-factory. Then- wen cast aside because of unin-
viting appearance poor writing, lack of neatness, bad spelling. glaringly
bad !

possible. Of these nineteen, each cf which wa> carefully

read, six were chosen and the writers were interviewed.


In spite of this report, however, the writer of an applica-
tion, if he is careful, can make it certain that his letter will be
read. He should :

1. Use excellent paper and envelope. The paper and
envelope should match. The envelope might well be of the
stamped kind sold in the post office. It should not be odd in
-hape or color.

2. The letter should be written on one side of the paper
only. It should conform in general to the instructions given
in Chapter XX as to margins, etc. If possible it should be

These things will insure notice. We shall now consider
the subject matter of the letter.

213. The Content. The best asset any person can have,
pt of course character, is the power to organize. You
must be able to get the first thing first and other things in due
order. Demonstrate your ability by putting all about your
education in one place usually a separate paragraph and
all about your experience in another place. Let us see in
what order the topics should come.

Naturally a statement of the position applied for comes
first perhaps the employer is seeking help in a dozen different
departments. Next he wants to know whether you are a boy
or a girl, how old you are, and something about your nation-
ality and your physical condition.

These points are in a sense only preliminary to the three
main qualifications experience, education, and reference.
Always tell of your experience first; if you have had none,
do not seek to hide the fact. The employer wants to know
what you have done, for if some one has tried you, you have
a record.

Education is next in importance. Employers are .steadily
raising their educational requirements as experience demon-
strates to them the superiority of the trained mind. At this
point you can advantageously bring in a little of your own
personality your attitude, for instance, toward the work you


hope to do. If your experience and your education are
satisfactory, and the form of the letter is pleasing, the em-
ployer will, at this point, be striving to get a mental picture
of you. He will be open to impression. Don't miss tin
opportunity of making this first impression favorable.

Throughout the letter, and at this point especially, get
away from any set form. Write your own letter in your own
mode of expression; use the simplest and sincerest language
you know.

References should be intended for use; i. e., little is gained

referring vaguely to a half dozen people. It is better
to name one or two persons qualified to speak of you, and
if telephone communication is possible it is well to give tin-
telephone numbers. The employer is a busy man, and he
is almost sure, other things being equal, to try to get into
touch with the applicant who offers the easiest line of inves-


Honesty i- always the best policy. No man can deceive
for long, and few men have profited by deceit. Do not try
to hide a limited experience or a poor education. Offer your-
>elf frankly as you are. If you cannot do the work, you should

l ie last person to want it; if you can do the work, let your


Experience: I was employed by H. A. Mueller & Co., importers of
German optical goods, until the war forced them practically to suspend
business. I have never worked for any other firm. (4) I was with Mueller
& Co. seventeen months, at first filing letters and writing an occasional
letter. When I left I was handling order detail.

Education: I attended the Roseville, Illinois, Township High School
for a little more than two years, but had to give up my schooling because
<>l the death of my father. (5) I attended the Central Business College
at Monmouth, Illinois, for six months, accomplishing a speed of seventy
\\urds on the typewriter and 115 at dictation.

Ability: I have confidence in myself I have to have it. (6) I never
did anything in your line, but I know I can learn. The first week at
Mueller's I was lost in a maze of technical terms, but I learned the work
and w;is given charge of letters in the most technical department.

References: Mr. H. M. Queens, Principal of the Central Business
( ' >Ili-ge, Monmouth, Illinois. Mr. H. A. Mueller, 220 S. Wabash Avenue.
Telephone Harrison (7) 4834 (8 a. m. to 1 p. m.); residence, Englewood

(\m you gire me an interview at a time convenient to you? I can
le reached through Wentworth 784.

Yours truly,

Mary A. Healy

6241 Eggleston Avenue


Consider the following notes and questions on the foregoing
letter of application:

(1) It is better to use the word to here to avoid too great abruptness.

(2) This is allowable in fact preferable. The habit of beginning
without a salutation is unusual.

C>) It is somewhat unusual to write the paragraph headings and those
headings may be omitted. This is a business letter, however, and the
headings show clearly the organization. The heading, indeed, is corning
into increasingly frequent use in business letters of all sorts.
Is frankness a good quality?

(5) Is reference to the death of her father proper in a business letter?

(6) What does she mean?

(7) What is the intention of Miss Healy regarding this referen

Is the letter sincere? Does Miss Healy very much need work? How
do you know? Does she ask for charity?

If you were the employer, would you ask Miss Healy to see you?
Miss Healy has not mentioned salary. Should she have done so?


215. Application in Person. The following material is
from a newspaper interview :

Things every boy or girl looking for a job in a large department store
should know were told yesterday by Charles P. Avery, office employment
manager of Marshall Field & Co., in a talk to the public schools depart-
ment of the National Commercial Teachers' Federation and Allied Associa-
tions, holding its twenty-first annual convention in the Hotel Sherman.

"Probably 75 per cent of the applications made by commercial grad-
uates are lacking in some essential," said Mr. Avery.

ch your students that personal appearance is the first considera-
tion. If a boy comes to us with his shoes unblacked o nd his hair uncombed,
I am quite likely to conclude that he belongs in a factory rather than in
the office department of a store. If a boy or girl doesn't make a good
ap|>earance, he or she won't even get an interview.

"Then comes the manner of approach. If they will come to me just
as they would come to their teacher at school or their parents, I shall be
able to judge their qualifications. If ajt>oy slouches in, holds thedooropen,
and gives the impresssion that he has all the time in the world on his
hands, I am likely to wonder if that is the way he would do if I sent him on
an errand.

\V<- give each applicant a blank application and tell him to go over to the desk and fill it out. Some boys say, 'Where?' Teach your student s to think quickly and listen to what is told them. The employment .if r does not want to repeat everything he says. "The appearance of the application, the spelling and the writing, all have significance for us. You would be surprised to see how dirty some of the applications are when they are handed back to us in about five minutes. Some of them are rolled or doubled up, with the marks of dirty fingers on them, so that the writing is almost, illegible. I picture to myself that person taking a note to a section manager or the general manager and* handing it in looking like that. "We find a tremendous number of misspelled words. Many of the applicants do not answer all the questions. are always looking for the hoys and girls who can graduate quickly into more important work. One of the very first things we notice is whether they have 'pep.' We want promptness und responsibility. "But the boys and girls who want work are not coming to an ogre ii tin- employment manager. They are coming to a man n who wants to hir- them. They can sell their adv:t' the material. .n\io:i> to iee them get into the right, groove.
d ^irl- to other places where 1

they will make a better s :ild with u



1. List the qualities Mr. Avery (p. 301) wants to find in
a candidate for employment.

2. In what order should personal qualifications be mentioned
in a letter of application?

3. If you were an employer, what qualities would you expect
to find in any man who could write as good a business letter &a
the Lincoln-McClellan letter on page 2 (. )('>'.'


Write a composition on:

How I shall try for my first job.


Make written application for one of the following positions.
Imagine yourself to have whatever qualifications you desire.
Be sincere, fair, interesting, and direct.


Stores and

ably high school graduate, for position in engineer-
ing department <>f lame manufaeturirm r.iurrrn;
salary $14; a splendid opportunity ; nive air*-. eduea-
tion, and experience in detail. Address M I) !_':>,
Tribune. _
person for stenographic and n-'neral cjerieal work
in lumber office; answer in own handwriting, Diving
full particulars as to experience, ajie, n-ls, nation-
ality, etc. Address M L 198.Tribune. _
STENOGRAPHER EXPERIENCED V< )V.\G IB or man of good appearance, about 2'> years
old; must have fair knowledge of bookkeeping;
good opportunity for advancement. Address M < >
116, Tribune. _
enced and have .some executive ability; capable
of assuming charge dictaphone dent, large down-
town office. Address M D 128, Tnbune. _
iar with construction and operation of coal, wood,
and oil stoves; must be able to adjust complaints
by letter; write or call employment department.
Open all day. BROWN. STKPHKNS and M< >V.


Let each student apply personally to the teacher (in the role
of employer) for some position he feels qualified to fill. For
instance, he may feel himself qualified to act as office boy.


grocery clerk, telephone operator, office clerk, mail carrier,
engineer's helper, stenographer, newsboy, etc.
The student should:

1. Answer all questions directly and truthfully.

2. Seek to appear entirely at ease.

3. Take time to speak slowly and distinctly, and avoid grammatical
and other errors.

The student should not:

1. Allow his attention to be drawn away from the employer.

2. Sit down until invited to do so.

3. Fumble his hat or sit or stand awkwardly.


Report to the class any experiences, pleasant or unpleasant,
which you may have had in applying for summer work. Try
to have the class profit by what you learned.

216. The Letter of Recommendation. Perhaps the most
common of the personal business letters is the letter of recom-
mendation. Employers almost always demand letters of
reference. Of course, these letters are usually beyond the con-
trol of the boy or girl who asks them of a previous employer,
hut it is not inconceivable that the two may talk over what it

to say. Certainly the applicant should know what
1 itutes a good letter of recommendation.
There are two general forms of letters of recommendation:
i. e., those addre^-ed To whom it nnu/ concern ; and
the direct letter sent through ordinary channels, the content
of which is generally unknown to the applicant.

217. The Open Letter. This is by far the less < Tlrctive. there h:i. the unfortunate cu-toni of 1 employer^ such letters. To be ellcctive, tin must b<- wordi-d very carefully. It is generally inadvisable to try to name all Hie jj^ood points that an applicant 1 Her to name only the major .-. which include lnmc-ty, in,li; 304 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH Of course, the man who reads a recommendation will ask at once, "Why did he leave his former work?" Realizing this, the writer of a recommendation should make this point very clear even if the matter is somewhat disagreeable. An illus- tration of the open letter follows; it is not a form or model, and should not be copied closely. To whom it may concern : I K iness in a strange town, you will do well to seek a friend who
can introduce you to the president of the business men's asso-
ciation or to the mayor or a -prominent banker. A young
w< >man can avoid a good many lonesome hours in a strange place
l>y taking with her a letter from her minister to the pastor of
her church in the new town, who will then introduce her
directly to the best young people he knows. The form of a
letter of introduction is generally similar to the following:

Pittsburgh, Pa.

Jan. 8, 1914
My dear Mr. Horton:

I have u very good friend who is going into the grocery business in
Connellsville. He ia the kind of man you need in your Commercial
Club, and I want him to have the pleasure and advantage of knowing you.
bearer is Mr. Fred Myers, formerly \\itli the Spra^ne \Vholesale
thifl city. Any courtesies you can show him I shall appre-
ciate personally.

'\ truly,

i I). Horton Lyman R. Dupre

Conncll.sville, Pa.



In a letter introduce the son of a neighbor or of a friend
to a business man in a distant city. Avoid, if possible, the
usual form of wording.

220. Letters Asking Information. Under this head come
requests for catalogs, prices, samples, etc. At first Blanco it
would seem unnecessary to spend time studying the pi
method of asking the price of a bicycle; but are you sure you
can always make it perfectly plain which bicycle you are
asking about? Besides, business men ask and are asked m^iny
complicated questions touching business systems, help in
operating machinery, legal points, etc.

We can divide letters of informal ion into t\\o general
classes: those falling within the regular routine of bush
and those which request favors outside of the routine. For
instance, you naturally expect a manufacturer t<> tell yon what
lubricating oil will work best in the automobile you bought of
him, but you feel that you are seeking a favor when yon a-k
him to tell yon where and how he gets his best steel. Naturally,
a request of the latter type requires careful planning.

221. The Routine Inquiry. The chief desirable quality of
routine requests is definii- Be sure to make your specifi-
cations exact, and to put them in a convenient form.

a! letter nf inquiry) <>rm)

Dear Sir: Dear Sir:

Will you please tell me how I can Will you please tell me how to

take the hack off the camera my take the back off your 3 A-146

father ordered from you Christ- model camera?

mas? Thanking you in advance, Yours truly,

I am, Fred Davis

Yours truly,
Fred Davis

(Criticism) (Commendation)
Large dealers would find this a This letter is definite. No
difficult question to answer. It "Thanking you in advance" end-
might involve going over the books ing is necessary,
to find some Davis who ordered a
camera sometime in December.


222. The Request for a Favor. The letter asking a favor
must be constructed with the convenience of the reader in
mind. Letters capable of standardization are usually printed
ready for the reply and call for the filling in of only a few words,
amped, addressed envelope is enclosed with the request.
An example of a standardized letter of inquiry is given below.
Italic parts are assumed to be printed; the remainder to be

rted by typewriter.



715 Masonic Temple


3/r. J. H. Smith

1 Green Street
Dear -

Mary O'Brien of 6142 Sangamon Street has applied to us for the
'/ stenographer. Will you please tell us what you know about
hor qualificationsf JJV xhall, of course, treat all information you may
as entirely confidential.

Yours respectfully.

Lee, Davis & Brockway

'ii'. applicant any bad habits/

'>id mi of th< applicant such as to entitle her to the confidence of hor t >,i/>l<>i], /. '

(OUT employ?

the applicant (jnalijied for the position applied for?

D<> Signed

Official position of xiijm r

be that cannot he reduced to printed forms should,

if po>-ible, he accompanied by 1 ypewrit ten form- ready for

. Where thi- is impractical the question ol.


Write a letter refusing permission to a man who has written
you that ho wants to hunt on your farm.

224. The Buying Letter. The purpose of the buying Letter
irive the receiver such information that he can deliver to
the writer the goods wanted. It is evident, then, that the
writer must, in every case, izive thought to the following:
1. A iption of the articles wanted.

instruction- ;ind address. The writer knows
: exprcs> cMiMpan e him best. He may

want t he yoods cjuickly and be willing to pay the higher exp

lie willing to wait for slower and cheaper


transportation. Settling these details costs the shipper n
time, whereas a few words from the writer cost little.

3. The terms of payment. Business is done for money.
There must always be a statement, or an understanding 1
on previous business, with regard to the terms.

225. Form of the Buying Letter. If the buying letter is
introduced by a simple statement similar to that in the right-
hand column below, the order may be written in block form
on the same sheet. If, however, the letter part is of such
importance that it requires consideration, the order should be
written on a separate sheet. Some companies copy orders
on prepared blanks, a sheet being sent to each department
concerned. Other houses send the original order from depart-
ment to department, each article 1 icing checked and signed
for as it is >ent to the shipping room. In every calide>.

gross Colona NX 10 medium, simile 1 Ib. can hydrochinon.

weight, glossy; 1 A gross 10x12 1100 Ib. keg pea hypo,

C'yko contrast, semi-matte, double 1 gross Colona NX Hi

weight. single weight, glo.-

1 A gross Cyko, 10x12 eon
semi-matte, double weight.


226. A Correct Ordering Letter. Students should examine
carefully the following model letter:


357 W. 63d St., Chicago
Order 1831

Sept. 24, 1917
B. Bauer A: Kenyon
J_M S. W abash Avenue


Kindly ship us by Lincoln Express the following before September 26
if possible:

100 doz. 8x10 Medium Iso.
100 doz. 1 /2*& 1 A Instantaneous Iso.
50 doz. 11x14 Crown.

special favor we ask that this order be charged to our October

Yours truly,

Andrews & Sable


1. Is the following description sufficient? Why?

Kindly send me six roll films for my kodak, six exposure, extra rapid,

2. Can the following order be filled? Why?

November 10, 1916

. Brown

Ma-li-on :mweet.

Yours truly,

Richard Henderson


3. Criticize the following if necessary:

10054 Wood Street, Chicago

November 10, 1916
Scott, Maynard & Co.
315 W. Jackson St.
Denver, Colo.
( Jontlemen:

Please send to me parcel post one raincoat, size 44.

Yours truly,

Henry Camp

4. How many ami what conditions are necessary in ordering
a watch? Arrange the conditions in logical order.

5. Criticize the following:

Hall and Montague
6330 Yale Ave.

Cleveland, Ohio
Dear Sirs:

Kindly send me the following goods:

1 man's shirt, 17^, full size, blue stripes or black dots $1.50

1 spool cotton thread, white 05

1 pair men's gloves, black kid 1 50

Inclosed find my check for $3.05.

Yours truly,

Mrs. Andrew Cropper

6. Write a letter to Sumner, Field & Company, Chicago,
ordering a pair of shoes. At first thought this may seem an
uninteresting task; however, if you begin to check all the specifi-
cations, you will find something to think about.

227. Letters Acknowledging Orders. All orders of what-
ever size should be acknowledged unless shipment can be
made very quickly. Acknowledging an order for a dollar's
worth of goods seems hardly to pay. The writer, however,
must look for his profit in the appreciation and good will of
his customer. The next order may be worth while. An
acknowledgment of an order should :

1. State the date the order was written and, if undue time
has elapsed, the date of its receipt.


2. Give the number of the customer's order if the number
system is used, and the number assigned to it by the receiver.

3. State the general nature of the goods ordered.

4. Give assurances regarding the time and manner of
filling the order.

5. Thank the customer for his confidence. (Not regularly
at the end, however, lest the statement become only a form.)

228. An Acknowledgment. Study the following model of
a letter of acknowledgment:



Sept. 25, 1917
Messrs. Andrews & Sable
357 W. 63d Street


We have your order No, 1831 of September 24, for 250 dozen plates,
l>ut regret that we cannot furnish theCrown until next week. However, we
are hurrying our.order No. A-231 tor 200 dozen Medium and Instantaneous
For shipment September 26 by Lincoln Express, and we shall back
order ">() do/en 11x14 Crown for delivery not later than September 29, our
onl.T X>

Thank you for the order. We have already notified the accounts
depart iiM-Mt to bill it for October.

Yours truly,

Bauer & Kenyon

229. Letters Transmitting Money. 1 Enclosures of money
should never be made except when accompanied by a letter
of which the sender keeps a copy. The letter should note
the number of the draft, check, or money order, the amount,
and the purpose. A carbon ropy of these conditions has more
than once enabled the sender to avoid paying hills a second
time, and has led to the recovery of lost or stolen money.

i.-ill amounts may lie sent in postage stamps.
No currency should l.e sent through the mail, for there are
mean- of payment which are entirely safe.

'For form* of chcck.. pages 360-966.


The post-office order is always safe. The express money
order is similar to the post-office money order.

Personal checks should not be sent except locally. When
a check gets far from home the holder has to pay exchange,
which he always charges, mentally at least, to the maker. A
certified check also involves exchange, but is much more
desirable. A personal check is backed only by the hon
of one man. A bank stands back of the certified check. The
process is simple. A duly authorized officer writes or stamps
''certified" and his name and position across the face of the
check and orders the amount withdrawn at once from the
maker's checking account, thus insuring payment when the
check is presented.

Most pay i u >nt s at a distance are made by the bank draft,
which is really only a check which one bank draws upon another,
.lust as in a check Smith orders the First National Hank to pay
Jones, in a bank draft the First National Bank of C'hi
orders the Manhattan Bank of New York to pay a bill in that
city, upon presentation of the draft. Whenever, the bank
one section of the country get a considerable indebtedness upon
t hose of another section, currency is sent by express to disci i
the debt. This does not often happen, because indebted
in New York is balanced against indebtedness in Chi< thereby canceling both. All drafts and money orders are known by number, and all i business men number their checks. The number of a check, its amount, the payee, etc., make a very valuable record. Examine the following example of a good letter of remitta; Gentlemen: In this letter you will find our check No. 62421 for $287.71 in payment of your invoice No. A-632. Yours truly, EXERCISE 2O7 Pay a firm at least five hundred miles away the su. $350. Their invoice number was .">1:>1. You are paying
within ten days and may deduct 2%.



230. The Adjustment Letter. The first thing for any busi-
man to resign himself to is the certainty of letters of
complaint. However much he may try always to satisfy, he
will at times fail, sometimes through no fault of his, and at
T times through oversight in his own office.
A M-cond fact to be kept in mind is that most people are
Successful business men have generally adopted a
working rule that the customer is always right.

;>ing the old customer is sound business sense. Small
things have a way, too often, of causing great enmities; too
often a point of no real consequence will break up business re-
lations of years. Adjust such differences; keep the old customer.
The most important quality in sustaining desirable business
relations is tad. This word may need explanation. The
dictionary defines it as a quick and intuitive appreciation of what
. In business, tact means changing places with the other
fellow. It means sympathy with his point of view first, and,
if necessary, argumentation afterward.

HIT lacking in tact)

-t of the damage of the kind
-.ention in your letter of June

rrsult of carelessi!-

uncrating. When :i man rips open

one end of a crate. IK- should make

iic other end isn't digging

he furniture. Our packers

lly careful to B66 that all

re fully proteeted.
If you will return the dan

will repair it.
Yours truly.

iiis letter
:le an :d-

isant condition. The offer
as a

rher than

(A better form)
Dear Sir:

\Yo were sorry to learn this
morning of the damage to the
table leg. Tracing the cause of
this kind of damage is not worth
the time, since the trouble may
lie in the crating, shipping, dray ing,
or uncrating. \Ye shall, however,
call our shippers' attention to the
Condition, and we suggest that you
ask your men to be careful in
uncrating; thus we may both help
to avoid damage of this kind.

If you will unbolt the leg and
ship it to us. \ve will have it repaired

Your.- very truly,
(Cotnim mid//:

This tetl and

in unci


A second quality of a good adjustment letter is one common
to all business letters promptness. The necessity of quick
reply in such cases is even more urgent than usual, because
the man making the complaint is displeased, and consequently
impatient of delay.

A third quality is thoroughness. A well conducted I nisi ness
will be systematized to the point where records are quickly
available, from which a thoroughly efficient letter may be
written. Adjustments should be a part of the business just
as service stations now belong to the automobile industry,
not a necessary evil to be slighted whenever it seems possible.

231. The "Mean" Letter. It is human nature to want to
strike back. Business men often receive mail of a very exas-
perating kind; but the wise correspondent does not reply in
kind, for he knows that anger is always undignified. He cannot
afford to descend to the level of the brawler, thereby unfitting
himself for courteous writing for several hours after. Two
ways are open to the receiver of a "mean" letter: (a) He can
fail (apparently) to notice that the letter differs at all from
other adjustment requests, (b) He can return a soft answer
to accusations and sarcasm. The former is the better method
of procedure in nine cases out of ten. The latter method
ought to be tried only by the experienced correspondent.
Charles Dickens once closed a letter to Sheridan Knowles, in
reply to an angry letter Knowles had written him, with the
following words:

You write as few lines which, dying, you would wish to
blot, as most men. But if you ever know me better, as I hope
you may (the fault shall not be mine if you do not), I know
you will be glad to have received the assurance that some
part of your letter has been written on the sand, and that
the wind has already blown over it.

Faithfully yours always,

Charles Dick-


Reply to the following. Explain that you bought some
stock of a ompetitor and that an inexperienced clerk, failing


io note that the competitor's numbers duplicated your own,
had shipped the wrong .goods.


We ordered from you August 24, our order No. 683, fifty-six lantern
slides on agriculture. We were careful to give you the correct numbers,
yet ten of these slides were views of types of architecture. We are sending
you a copy of the order, on which we have checked the goods which we
find satisfactory. Will you see to this at once, as our customer is impatient?

Yours truly,

Davis & Co.


Write explaining that there was some uncertainty as to your
ability to fill the following order, and after settling this matter
you had forgotten to acknowledge the order. Apologize and
promise immediate shipment.

257 W. 84 St., Chicago

June 24, 1917

Messrs. Donald, Andrews & Co.
327 Front St.

Detroit, Michigan
Gentlemen :

More than a week ago I ordered a table and six dining chairs. I have
heard nothing from you. Did you receive the order and the money? If
so, why don't you let me know? When am I to get my table? Ever?

Yours truly,

Mrs. Mary Hazelton


You receive the following letter:

Hazelhurst, la.

Dec. 10, 1917
A. C. Knvht Co.


i three weeks ago I ordered a shotgun from you, and I >< nt tin moiM-y. 18 dollars. I was in a hurry, and so I mailed the letter on in,. 1 haven't heard from you and I haven't received my gun or my i ou are a bunch of robbers. I'm going to get the post-office ;. I want to do business with honest m-n. 1 Keim 318 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH You find that Mr. Keim's order has been sent to the trouble department and that it reads: Nov. 18, 1917 A. C. Knyht Co. 2046 Wood St. Chicago Gentlemen: Please send me one shotgun like that on page 16 of your ratal am sending you $18.00 in currency. Yours truly, ]><< I K. Reply to Mr. I\eim's letter of Dec. 10. 232. The Sales Letter. The sections immediately following treat of the letter written to a person in an effort to hit- him in certain goods or service. The letter does not presuppose previous correspondence. The sales letter is the most difficult of all the 1m- letters, because you have to create an interest. When a man writes to you inquiring about an article, you can count on his reading your reply, but when you write the first letter you must make it so intcn-tinu; that he will read it. Otherwise your letter is a dead loLK: The ripe olive, full of its own rich oil, is a delight. The
olives are picked, etc.

The reader will follow readily into a description of olive raising.

235. The First Impression. The writer must change places

.ally with the, reader. He must try his writing upon

and mark well his own feelings. If the words produce


anger, fear, or unpleasant memories, they must not be used.
A phonograph salesman writing to a ranchman and desiring to
point out the loneliness of the country and the lack of enter-
tainment, wrote, "Are your children learning anything in Moon-
ville?" Now if there is anything dear to a man it is his children,
and the mere insinuation that they are growing up ignorant in
a wild place, is the more likely to anger him because it may be
true. Avoid seeming to notice any unpleasant conditions in a
man's location or employment. Do not speak directly, for
instance, of the hot weather of a particular section. You may
wit h profit speak of hot weather, but you should make the con-
dition general ; otherwise the reader may resent your words.

Use care in asking questions, for there may be the assump-
tion of a negative answer which will be uncomplimentary.
"Are you an honest man?" is a bad start. Most men resent
even a question of their honesty. A circular letter to a pluml id-
began, "Do you want a good reputation as a plumber?"
Probably most readers replied, at least mentally, "I have a good
reputation, thank you!" and threw the letter away.

Summed up, the impression the writer must give through
his letter does not differ from that he would want to make
in a face-to-face conversation.

236. Passing to the Explanation or Description. The
transition from the opening sentence to the description of the
article for sale is very important. If the first sentence is too
far afield, the reader will feel that you have used it only to
catch him, and he will not read farther. One way of passing
from the "attention compeller" to the purpose of the letter is
to tell a story or to offer interesting information. Note the
skill with which the writer of the following letter passed from
Napoleon to the safety razor :

Napoleon was deathly afraid of a razor. He never permitted any
one near him with an open razor. He did his own shaving and, owiim
to a sensitive skin, never could get a razor that pleased him. The one
that annoyed him least was picked up during the Peninsular Campaign
and had a blade of Saracen steel. Today nearly all the World's Rulers
use a. .. Razor.. ..


The interest every man has in his own business offers
the writer a chance which he ought not to overlook. A business
man is always interested in cutting down operating expenses.
Note how the writer used this fact in the following letter to
a large manufacturer :

Dear Sir:

Do you pay your men for useless walking? It may be that more of
your money is slipping away with the shoe leather of your employees
than you suspect. It takes time for a man to move forty feet and adjust
himself to a new task, perhaps having to return for other tools or more
supplies. And every time he shuffles about your shop he gets in another
man's way and costs you some more money. Now we can stop all this.
(Selling automatic traveling cranes.)


Which of these beginning lines are good and which are bad?
Discuss each one carefully with your teacher.

1. Dear Sir: You carry life insurance of course. How about poison
insurance? How do you know that your wife or your child won't take
carbolic acid for cough medicine? You are careful, of course. But are
you sure? (Selling a first-aid medicine cabinet.)

2. Dear Sir: Do you want to enjoy life? You cannot find better
amusement than in one of our phonographs.

3. Are you willing to let the other fellow get ahead of you? One of
your customers writes us that you don't carry our unexcelled line of soups.
He may go elsewhere and you will lose his trade.

4. Dear Madam: A word about your children. Mothers know the
importance of bringing up the child to appreciate good taste. The school
years are vital and there's much for the child to learn besides arithmetic
(Talk on clothing.)

5. Dear Madam: Are you interested in your children? Do you want
thorn to look decent? You know the school years ;ire most important.
(Selling clothing.)

6. Dear Sir: K:iilro:uls use sand: wise men wear rubber heels; but
the wisest of them all is the man who equips his car with non-skid chains.


,n a letter to a teacher in the grades intended to in'
horinasniir it. What one quality or condition do you

want to stress? t and beauty, or freedom from little

worn* -'.' I'erhaps you want to emphasize health or cheapness.


Choose your best argument and give the proper impression in
the first lines.

237. The Description. If you are a good writer, the reader
is interested at this stage. He may be hoping that you can help
him that you can save money for him or increase his efficiency
or comfort; or perhaps he is merely interested. Your task
now is to make him see the details you wish to present. If you
are selling a machine, your description must be so clear that
he will see the parts of the machine and understand why you
arc enthusiastic. If you are selling service, make the working
details very plain.

This is not so easy as it may at first seem. Business calls
for imagination not the kind which pictures fanciful things,
but that which sees real possibilities and describes them so
clearly that the reader also sees. Avoid, then, any phrase or
word that has lost its meaning. "That's what they all say"
is a slang phrase, but it expresses well the state of mind of the
man who reads, "Our product i< best/' "made of the highest grade oak." "quality unexcelled," etc. These phrases have lost their power. Business letters must be written with some- thing of the same force and freshness which literature has always demanded. Avoid explaining the merits of an article at too great length. Do not detail too many merits. Concentrate rather on one thing the comfort of a chair, or the accuracy of a watch. Compare the force of the description in the following advertising letters: The watch is a fine .... a watch that is both time keeper, durable and hand- ornament and instrument. A watch some the best "buy" on the to be worn, not just "carried." market today. A watch which shows on the face of it that it is heir to a fine old tradition and will beat true to it (Criticism) through life. Excessive use of commonplace (Commendation) adjectives like fine, durable, hand- Here is an original description. some, etc., has weakened this kind It carries conviction. But one qual- of description. ity, elegance, is hero dis.-ussc. 1. SPECIAL BISIXKSS LETTERS 323 A packing house writes: "Do you remember the smell of hickory smoke that suggested biscuits to the boy of years ago? You get it again with our Plantation brand hams, cured," etc. That figure will not be so powerful as the generations change, but it brings to the man who remembers the old wood stove, the memory of good things to eat. And when you get a man's "mouth watering," you are near a sale. EXERCISE 213 Which of the following descriptions do you consider good? Criticize the others. Discuss each with your teacher. 1. Picture to yourself a handsome, high-grade, beautifully-finished, luxuriously easy-riding enclosed coach put as much quality into your picture as you can. 2. You want your medicine chest LOCKED. And when the accident is fresh you don't want to look for the key. Here's the solution. Let us make your combination any two numbers you choose numbers you and your wife can't forget baby's birthday, for instance. Antiseptic bandages, disinfectants, antidotes, first-aid book always ready. Always locked. You don't know how much you may appreciate this some day. 3. This is an easy car to drive. It is easily repaired, but seldom needs to be. It is durable for your line of business. It is also a car that you need not be ashamed of. 4. Our phonographs are made of the best seasoned wood. They : about four feet high, but are on the highest grade ball-bearing castors, which permit them to be moved about the room at will. They have a fine tone. Don't buy any other. 5. There is no necessity for library paste to dry out. You need not try to use the hardened brush with its tin top attached. We have a simple container with a water division which keeps both brush and paste soft ready for instant use. 6. In no country in the world are the soil and climate better suited for growing pineapples than Hawaii. Here this rich, luscious fruit is grown in its highest state of perfection. It is allowed to ripen in the beautiful tropical sunshine and balmy winds, and is sweeter and more juicy -grown else \\\\< lag pineapples, such as are pictured above, are selected for our Lexington brand. They are canned imme- diately after being picked and come to you full of the natural rich flavor, as tender and juicy as though just taken from the stem. We handle only highest grade, of Hawaiian pineapple at lower prices than it in usually sold for. Tr 324 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH 238. The Application to the Individual. Let us suppose that by this time you have told your reader what you have to sell. Suppose you have explained to a woman the purity of the Montrose brand of canned soups how the vegetables are gathered and with what sanitary care they have been handled. You need now to connect all this directly with her life. You might picture to her the advantages of a warm, instantly pre- pared dinner after a cold day's shopping. Y r ou might point out to her the comfort she will take in the thought of a delicious first course when company comes unexpectedly. Here is an opportunity to work "you" into your letters. Point out to the man who gets in from a hard day's work "How refreshed your feet feel, what a wonderful measure of comfort you experience, after you release them from the stiff leather shoes of an evening and slip into a soft, easy-fitting pair of slippers!" EXERCISE 214 Discuss the following paragraphs \\ith the teacher. These paragraphs are assumed to follow explanation of the articles. 1. To a general storekeeper in a small town : I heard a woman say the other day that she could get better bargains at the small store in spite of the higher price. "I can explain that easily," I told her. The small storekeeper must depend on come-back business. Eclectic knit goods brings 'em back. \Yhen you sell one of our union suits, point to the label Eclectic. Say to your customer, "Notice the name; you'll want another of these suits as soon as you feel the snug warm fit." 2. To a poultry-raiser: (Could this be written by a man who doesn't know the poultry business?) There's no limit to what a man can make in the business except the limit of time in caring for the stock. When you have to carry a hundred frozen fountains to the service house, thaw them out, repair a few dozen breaks, refill and carry them back to the units, you are paying a big price for something which ought to be free water. The Thermaq does all this while you care for the fowls and the eggs, and does it much better than you can. The Thermaq maintains a uniform temperature of from forty to sixty degrees throughout the coldest weather. SPECIAL BUSINESS LETTERS 325 EXERCISE 215 Explain to a real estate man how a camera will suit his purposes. Take it for granted that you have proceeded through the explanation of the mechanism. Or explain to a housewife how a can of Benton's delicious soup will aid dinner when company comes unexpectedly. or when she returns, chilled, from a shopping trip. 239. Making It Easy to Order. '/Procrastination [putting things off] is the thief of time," runs the old saying old because it has been recognized for centuries as a truth. A man, even when convinced, often gives up to more pressing affairs and puts aside your letter. Gradually he loses his interest, and your effort has failed. There's just one thing to do make ordering so easy and so natural that he will act in the next minute. If possible, it is wise to add a time element. Make it seem necessary to order quickly. "Only 300 sets left" is in keeping with the general idea, but overworked. A little thought will rally discover some time element that can be used. Some firms offer prizes to accompany the sale if the order is received by a certain date. Sometimes a time coupon is inclosed, good for credit before a given date. These devices originate in the knowledge that allowing a man to put a thing off is not good business. Most men are busy especially those who are worth while. Sometimes even a little task like writing a letter looms large before the man whose business is crowding him. You must do the ordering for him. "Give him something to sign." Many firms inclose order blanks which the purchaser may fill out and .'ii which he may check what he wants. An addressed helps. Within local distances the telephone may be Bested as an easy method of ordering, and many firms give iiyer authority to ''wire collect." One of the l-.-t incentivefl for quick action H promised service. Make your customer gee you ready to deliver to him :iitly something that you want him to have and that he 326 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH wants to have. Make him feel that you are working for his interest and that you are ready to do him a favor at the first opportunity. It is never a wise plan to attempt to frighten or 1 coerce a customer. A few years ago a large department store mailed thousands of numbered cards to prospective customers. Each number was said to correspond to a charge account in the customer's name, and the letter warned the receiver that he had better come in and be identified to prevent some one's learning his number and running a charge against him. That letter made enemies. EXERCISE 216 Study the following letter. How many paragraphs are there? Why? What is the work of each paragraph? BELL, BROWN & COMPANY PROJECTION APPARATUS AURORA, ILLINOIS December 16, 1917 The Reverend M. A. Baldwin Morton, Kansas Dear Mr. Baldwin: When one considers that three out of four automobile bandits terroriz- ing our cities are boys from sixteen to twenty-one, he gets a spasm of attention. "Why?" he asks himself. "Is it because the church and the school can't got hold of the boy?" Doubtless you have studied this matter closely, and we wish we might talk with you about it. It must l>e true, though, that good influences wen- lacking.

Since we must run competition with immoral or at best unmoral
entertainment, we might better do it well. There is no reason why the
church shouldn't have science on its side. Science can help wonderfully.
The Edison laboratories have produced a new incandescent light brighter
than the are, which can be used in the stereopticon. This at last solves
the problem of projection, for fire ordinance prohibitions, special wiring,
:ind cracked slides belong to the past. There is no inferno of heat and
smoke and no smudged hands and burnt fingers just a clear bright
light, silent as any ordinary electric bulb, and safe. The minister will

ially appreciate the safety.

You will find this lantern invaluable in your work. It can be used
in the Sunday-school room by unskilled operators and it is safe. It helps
to keep the boy in Sunday-school one of our big problems. It can he


carried about to the homes of your parishioners to add to the enjoyment
of an evening. It is strong enough to illustrate your Sunday evening
lecture. You can use it in club talks and be free to focus your entire
attention upon what you have to say. Every pastor who has a desire
to be a power beyond his pulpit should own one.

Why not arrange for a trial now? You can have a machine in Horton
for next Sunday. In the course of a month you can give an entertainment
and make the machine pay for itself in one night the entire cost is only
$28.75, and we will give you sixty days to pay for it. Perhaps you had
better wire us (at our expense) if you want a machine for Sunday. Other-
wise use the inclosed form and send direct to us and we will make prompt
delivery we await only your word.

Yours very truly,

Bell, Brown & Company,



Begin letters to the following. Proceed only as far as the
proposition (or description).

1. A man to whom you want to sell life insurance.

2. A widow whose husband has left her ten thousand dollars in life
insurance. You have a 6% farm mortgage offer. Emphasize safety.
(There are hundreds of men who induce women to buy bad stocks. It
is said that on an average widows lose their life insurance money within
four \< 8. You hope to sell a man advertising space in the Saturday Evening Post. 4. You are soliciting funds for an orphan asylum. 5. You have an inquiry about your excellent burglar alarm system. EXERCISE 218 Explain exactly how one of the following articles saves labor or improves on <>I<1<>..

iie Johnson hand fin- i-xtinguisln-r.

'.',. '1 is acetylene unit lijiht system fur the home.

1. '< 'vj>rr.-- th- WTOOd t.Tiial."
]< ri-vci Ivors. 6. .' .th. > they would be addressed in forceful, but at the same time
courteous, talk. Therefore the ordinary colloquial contrac-
tion-, and even slan? words that express the meaning more
.rally and more directly than their "literary'' substitutes,
-omctime< l,e more de.-iralde. However, don't overdo the i had better u-e too little than too much. 242. The Follow-up Letter. The business man who ad\' v means of letters knows the value of repetition. 6 advertisement^, for instance of the trade-mark variety, atirely the p..\ver of persistent suggestion. 330 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH A great mail-order house in a large western city is able to produce much business by the following type of letter based upon its filing records: Sept. 1, 1916 Mr. Henry M. Hood* Dana, Illinois Dear Mr. Hood: It seems hardly two years since we heard from you, yet our books show that your last order was shipped August 24, 1914. We are wondering why we haven't had more of your business. It occurs to us that perhaps we have made some mistake in your order. Perhaps the goods did not give satisfaction. "\\ e want to know about all such cases in order to cast out any articles that do not please our customers. \\K want our customers to stand by us, and certainly we are doing everything we know about to aid them. \\ ill it be asking too much of you to write us a letter, using the inclosed stamped envelope addressed to me personally, as I want to know all about your case? Write to rne tonight. Yours very truly, Mead & Company, By Superintendent of Correspondence This is only a form letter. The letter is printed, not type- written, by one of the new processes. Printing can now be made to resemble typewriting so closely that only the expert can identify it. Blanks are left for the dates, and heading and dates are cleverly and quickly filled in. Each letter is signed by pen and has, for nine out of ten men, the force of a personal letter. Many good business houses follow up any inquiries from which orders do not result. Sometimes two or three letters are sent at intervals of about ten days; but it is probably of doubtful value to send more than one such letter, for the receiver will feel that he has brought upon himself a correspondence attack and will resent too many letters. A kindly question, with a statement that perhaps the house misunderstood what the writer wanted, is good business. There is no objection to following this with good sales talk. A form letter can be used. SPECIAL BUSINESS LETTERS 331 243. The Follow-up Campaign. Any campaign, to succeed, must be organized. A successful football team is more than half organization. The army with the most carefully worked- out system of supply, care of wounded, sanitation, etc., makes much the better showing. A business allowed to run without the guiding power of a controlling mind is fortunate if it tpes wreck. An assault upon a man's inclination to keep his money in his pocket is like any other attack. The mere power of reitera- tion is not enough the assault must be made from other angles in the form of new argument at unexpected places. The wise business general will therefore not use all his ammunition in the first attack. Each attempt, however, must be complete in itself. Suppose the purpose of a series of three follow-up letters is to sell a medicine chest containing preventive drugs for use in the family. The "talking points" are as follows: 1. Accidents come unexpectedly be prepared with bandages and antiseptic chemicals. Often an accident is due to a child's spilling an acid or eating a dangerous drug. Prevent this by having the cabinet locked. 2. Infection must be treated in its early stages. What seems but a scratch may develop blood poisoning. Colds and sore throat develop pneumonia and diphtheria. Prevention is generally easy in the early stages use the Complete First Aid Equipment. 3. It is a great advantage to be able to diagnose diseases of children Mpanying indexed book explains symptoms of scarlet fever, m< chirkeri pox, diphtheria, with instructions for care, etc. Not intended to t: ike the place of the doctor, but to make doctors' calls fewer and insure intelligent care of contagious diseases. Three complete letters should be written and printed ready for the address. The first failing, the second is sent about two weeks later. Each letter must follow the natural steps described in Sections 231-235, namely: 1. Getting attention. proportion to tin- reader's needs. 4. "Closing the deal." 332 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH 244. Getting Attention in Second and Third Letters. In the second letter blanks may be left for dates. The following forms might be used effectively: Dear Sir: We have not heard from the letter we wrote you December 10. You probably have not got around to it yet. We who hear of so many acci- dents know the danger of delay> and we don't want misfortune to catch
you unprepared.

. Since writing you December 10 about our Complete First Aid Equip-
ment, we have cut more than a dozen clippings from the papers recording-
fatal accidents through misuse of drugs.

The third letter also may begin in some such manner. It
is unwise to take the attitude of injury because your reader
has not replied to your letters. He owes you nothing.

Follow-up letters must be written for classes of people.
There are two main divisions: (a) People who receive many
letters. Form letters to this class must be brief, pointed, and
of some dignity, (b) People who receive few letters. Letters
in this case may be made longer and more confidential.


Plan and write a series of three letters to business and
professional men intended to sell the medicine cabinet dis-
cussed in Section 243.


Plan and write a circular letter intended to induce grocery
men to sell apples from the James River Apple Growers'

245. The Collection Letter. Collection has become a
separate business. The rates of collection companies are
rather high, however, and it is better if possible to collect one's
debts without their aid. On the other hand, if a firm does
not have a collection department an unpleasant correspondence
is costly in time and spirit. One of the best ways to be success-


tul in the collection business is to prevent the necessity of
much collect inc.

The collection letter differs from other business letters in
that it often may with advantage be impersonal. What has

;i said in previous pages about getting in close touch with
your correspondent may not well apply to the first letter or
two asking for money. It is better to make the letter seem to
be the routine thing rather than a direct personal request. If,
however, nothing results from the distant formal notice, it is
K-t to seek to awaken the debtor's sense of duty by personal
let ters. It is to point out to the debtor that you are seek-
ing to free him from an unpleasant situation. Show him how
much happier he will be when the matter is settled. In other
words, sell him peace of mind. If this fails, there is nothing
left to do but threaten, first to draw upon him through a bank
and, if the draft be not honored, to place the account in the
hands of a lawyer.

The following is a good form of monthly statement:




July 1, 1917

The Markol Tailoring Co.
841 W. 63 St.


June Acct.

29 00

Advert Mntf man-rial may be inclosed with such a statement.
M la second plain statement or even a third.

try to writ*' a, letter.

IOW c<>! i fronted with two possible

modes of pror.-durc. He may think \\\< cu-tomer is only temporarily delinquent and he may therefore value his IHISJI In that case his letter should inclose advertising and sales talk. 334 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH If the business and previous experience promise little, the letter may be firmer. The following is a letter to a man whose business is valued : HART, MAYER & COMPANY MADISON AND CLARK STREETS CHICAGO Aug. 20, 1917 The Markel Tailoring Co. 341 W. 63 Street Chicago Gentlemen: You have doubtless overlooked your small account of $29.00 due us July 1. We are writing now to recall the matter to your mind. May we have a remittance at least by September 1? Did you get our announcement of the purchase of the Watson bank- rupt stock? Now is your chance to share with us in the best bargain we've made for many moons. \Ve hope to see you at our display next week. Yours very truly, Hart, Mayer & Company, If the customer's business is not valued, the following letter might be written. Circumstances must rule. It is often possible for the creditor to write a personal letter with good results. But the writer should always maintain his dignity. Letters of the "We need the money" type do the writer harm, for in writing them the creditor surrenders his unassailable dignity almost in the way he loses caste by replying to a "mean" letter with angry words. Justice, not pity, should be the basis of demand. Gentlemen : You have ignored our requests for payment of your June account amounting to $29.00. We must ask you to give this your immediate attention, as the time you have taken is longer than we care to extend our tenn>.

May \ve hear from you by return mail? Otherwise we shall draw
upon you through the First National Bank of Chicago.

Yours truly,


Previous requests having been ignored, a final letter as
follows may be written:

Gentlemen :

You have failed to meet our request for payment of your June indebted-
ness. The First National Bank of Chicago reports that you have refused
to honor our draft of August 25. We are accordingly placing the account
in the hands of the Thomas Collection Agency of Chicago.

Yours truly,

Conditions will differ and no series of collection letters
should be considered as models. The steps, however, are
generally as follows:

1. Send statements promptly perhaps as many as four.
Inclose advertising material.

2. Write a letter assuming that your customer has forgotten
the account or that your statements have not reached him.
Inclose advertising or sales talk.

3. Write a courteous but firm request for the money.
Threaten to collect through a bank. Inclose no advertising

4. Inform the customer that you have turned the account
over to a collection agency. In general, always be calm and


Write a series of three letters to Davis and Dulton, 146
Greenland Ave., Columbus, Ohio. You have previously sent
them three statements requesting payment of $185 which they
have now owed you four months.

246. The Telegram. Briefest and costliest of all forms of

.-Mimic -at ion is the telegram. For an ordinary message

that is supposed to go through as quickly as possible, there

is a standard minimum rate for ten words (or less), varying

according to the distance or difficulty of communication, and a

1 charge for each word above ten. Besides actual words,

i figures, letters, and punctuation marks in the body

ie telegram are counted, together with any such following

-ignature; but no charge H made f,r tin* address and the


signature. Longer messages that do not require immediate
transmission may be sent at lower than ordinary commercial
rates as "night letters" or "day letters." Newspapers and
other large users of telegraphic service are given special rates.
Most people try to keep their telegrams within the ten
words of the minimum rate, with the result that no little skill
in condensation is often required. The problem that confronts
you in writing a telegram is to say exactly what you most need
to say, in such a way that it cannot be misunderstood, yet in
the most compact form. Fragmentary sentences, consisting
mainly of nouns or pronouns and verbs, are the rule in telegrams.

EXAMPLE: Lost pocketbook. Wire hundred Brent House Portland.

Suppose you want to reduce the following letter to a tele-

Messrs. Jones and Warner
125 N. Dearborn St.


I closed the Miller deal yesterday, and he and I will be in Chicago
for further instructions Tuesday morning. \Ve shall probably roach
your office about ten o'clock. Have Mr. Mason there if possible.

Yours truly.

Laurence Henning

A telegram of ten words may read thus:

Jones and Warner

125 N. Dearborn St.

Closed Miller meet us with Mason your office ten Tuesday.


247. The Special Code. Some large business concerns
work out a system of words to take the place of phrases,
clauses, and even sentences for use among their various
branches. Any firm can devise such a code without much
difficulty. One hundred actual letters ought to furnish a
pretty good list of 'phrases which are sufficiently common to
warrant the assignment of a small word to each (a code word


is counted as two if it exceeds five letters). The great tele-
graph companies have a complete private code for the use of
their patrons. A long telegram can, by the use of a good code,
be reduced to a few disconnected words.


1. Write a telegram of not more than ten words (not in-
cluding address), expressing the sense of the following letter:

Mr. A. K. Lemont

Hope, Arkansas
Dear Mr. Lemont:

Will you come to Chicago by Tuesday if possible? Mr. Jones leaves
11-. taking charge of the Cleveland office. We want you to remain in
Chicago permanently.

Yours truly,

Bell Coil Co.

A. M. Roberts, Mgr.

2. Reduce the following letter to a telegram of not more
then ten words:

I )ear McMillan:

We cannot find a copy of the Warner contract. Do you know where
F Perhaps you have it with you. Will you wire us immediately?

Yours truly,

A. W. Lawrence

:!. Write a telegram in answer to Mr. Lawrence's inquiry.
Tell him that attorney N. M. Wallen took the contract to
improve the wording if possible. You are McMillan.


1. What i- most commendable in the Lincoln letter on pa<.-.e 296? J. DiflOUfl the appearance of a letter of application. What is the T 'f qualifications to he mentioned in such a let! '.'>. II' -.V -hould an applicant act \\hcnappl\ingfora position'.' Should

' Why?

I. 11 "-.'. OMB ati applicai.' >is
in criticism of what they read, and that only studied appeal
will reach them.

(e) He must, in general, picture or describe only pleasant
things. Most readers of maua/incs are trying to forget the
troubles of the day, and t hey will turn away from a life insurance
advertisement picturing a hear>e, with a shudder which does
little good to the advertiser. It would, however, be good
advertising to picture the wife and children in comfort due to
an insurance policy.

(f) Advertisers must not forget the women. In general
they do more than half of the buying, and since they are
occupied usually with home-making, the task of adapting
advertisements to them is not difficult.

(g) The writer must beware of accidental bad impressions.
A lunch room advertises, "Ernie's always crowded." This
catch phrase is intended to give an impression of popularity,
but really gives an unpleasant sense of lack of privacy.

(h) Advertisements should not be in fine print. Eyesight
generally begins to fail about the time a man reaches his grea
buying power. You must not allow the reader to quit reading
because it is difficult to continue.

251. Construction of an Advertisement. The general laws
of advertisement writing are very similar to those governing
the selling letter; many things said in Sections 232-239 may be
reviewed to advantage here. The chief steps in making
a good advertisement are :

1. Catching the reader's attention and interesting him till
you can get in your talk.


2. Explaining the proposition or article.

3. Making it easy to order.

In general the advertisement is more condensed than the
letter. Advertising is expensive and, besides, a reader will go
more deeply into a letter than into an advertisement, because
the letter is addressed to him personally. Often one or more
of the steps is omitted in an advertisement. The question the
writer must face is, "How would my average reader be im-
->(! by this kind of advertisement?"

252. Methods of Catching Attention. By far the most
effective type of advertisement employs a picture or pictures.
Sometimes, as has been noted (Section 249), the picture alone

! it ut cs t he advertisement, but more often it is accompanied
by explanatory matter. Sometimes the picture has little
or no relation to the subject, although in general this is bad
advertising. It is but another form of trick which the American
r -ader has from the past, learned to beware of. A current
rtisement for breakfast food is headed "Tire troubles,"
pictures a man and woman bending over a punctured tire.
The automobile enthusiast who begins reading is disgusted
1 'etause he finds himself tricked. The housewife doesn't
bother about automobile tires, hence fails to see the breakfast
food advertisement.

Another advertisement shouts above a picture of "Uncle

' ' 1XCLE SAM INSISTS. Install ventilation when

you build.'' Now there is no United States law on ventilation

and there probably never will be one. That field belongs to

There is here the mischievous principle of untruth.

"If the heading is false," thinks the reader, "how can I

tru.-t any of the rest?"

253. The Use of Personal Appeal. Often the advertiser
wishes id appeal to a certain class of people. He must under-

.'l their lives and their ambitions; he can then get their
playing upon their hopes and d< Directed rsonal appeal is one of the most effective openings employed in advertisements. 344 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH Correspondence schools make a specialty of appealing to men who are anxious to get above their present positions ambitious young men generally. One such school uses the fol- lowing (usually associated with a picture) : Don't Envy Successful Men; Be One. Another school asks: Are You Boss or Bossed? One savings bank, in an appeal to thinking men to lay some- thing by, begin-: Saving Is a Discipline. It Is More Than That It Is the Greatest Kewunl of Discipline. Another savings bank asks on a street-car placard : As Your Income Increases, Which Crov.s with It Your Savmii or Your Spending? 254. The Appeal by Interesting Statement. Another type of advertisement hears an astonishing factor a curt philo- sophical statement in the headline. \\hen well done this makes a powerful appeal. This form of call is vastly superior to the "Ours is the best" type. Compare the force of these two extracts from advertisements in current magazines. Whi<-h is better? The Jenkins tires are be- 40 Million Miles a Day! hion made Of fresh rubber used on the times around the world daily! best grade machines. What's the answer? It is not, however, necessary that the advertisement contain startling information. The following is interesting: Safe for everybody but the burglar. Once in every man's life there comes a time when he needs a pistol. A filing cabinet company advertises: FILING THAT PUTS SPEED INTO FINDINC. Filing Labor Costs Ten to Twenty Times As Much As Filing F.rjuip- ment. ADVERTISING 345 Don't forget your product. No "attention compeller" should proceed far without definite mention of the product. The greatest value of advertising consists in making the name of your product a kind of "household word." EXERCISE 229 Begin an advertisement to one of the classes in Column B. Make choice of any business from Column A. A B Breakfast food manufacturer Society woman Automobile manufacturer School teacher Photographic equipment jobber Chauffeur Real estate salesman Grocery clerk Correspondence school Student Watch and clock manufacturer Music teacher Diamond merchant Housekeeper Publishing company Reporter Perfume makers Lawyer 255. The Transition from Heading to Product. The advertiser must not let his "prospect" lose interest after reading the heading or looking at the picture. Some device must be employed information given, perhaps, or passing interest an used to lead the reader on. A story is sometimes effectively iM-d in this place. The following is from the advertisement of an insurance company (below an interesting old woodcut of a spinning wheel;: !e with the first advertisement of the Fire Insurance Company, printed in the Hartfnnl Courant in 1810, Donald McAulay, Turner, announced that ho "made and repaired all kinds of spinning who. Old Donald would look in vain through the pages of this maga/ine for ftd f spinning wheels, and we can imagine* his amazement raph. telephone, or motor car. Hut one familiar friend he would find the announcement of the f as ready today to give prote.-t i,, M from all the risks of a motor car as it was to insure a spinning wheel in 1810. 346 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH An advertisement in a current magazine begins: "THINK BEYOND YOUR JOB " "There is not a man in power at the Bethlehem Steel Works today," says Charles M. Schwab, in the American Magazine, "who did not begin at the bottom and work his way up. These leaders rose from the ranks. They won out by using their normal brains to think beyond their manifest daily duty. "Eight years ago was switching engines. His ability to out-think his job, coupled with his sterling integrity, lifted him to the presidency of our corporation. Last year he earned more than a million dollars." 256. Description and Application. Instead of the common- place in description, which merely enumerates the good qualities of an article, an automobile firm advertises beneath an attractive picture: When snow is flying and all outdoors is wrapped in bleak January's somber mantle, your coupe" warm and cozy takes you to the theater, the dinner party, or the evening reception in the same comfort you have just left in your living room. Snug in this fine new enclosed car richly upholstered and beautifully finished you are independent of weather, of street conditions, of chauffeur or escort. By day or night, alone or accompanied, you go and come safely, surely, silently. This description carries conviction. It creates a do-in-. It speaks of elegance, warmth, and silence, not directly, but as the setting of a cozy picture. One can almost feel the balmy freshness of a good shampoo after reading the following. Instead of a flat statement that soap is good for the hair and scalp and is cleansing, we are given a description of luxurious feeling. Soap is good for the scalp because it cleans, soothes, heals and healthy scalps encourage healthy, lustrous hair. The mere operation of applying its fragrant, pine-laden lather to one's hair is beneficial. The pressing, the kneading, and all the other processes that constitute what is known as shampooing all help. And when the lather is rinsed out and the hair is once more dry, there remains a feeling, not only of absolute cleanliness, but of delightful exhilaration. ADVERTISING 347 257. Making It Easy to Order. Orders are the life-blood of a business. There is nothing but loss in catching a reader's attention, convincing him of the desirability of an article, and failing; to get his order. Ordering must be made easy. Most advertisers use a coupon or form which needs only the filling in of a name and address. The following from Starch's Adver- tising explains one such plan: The Pedlar People, Ltd., of Oshawa, Ontario, manufacturers of architectural sheet -metal building material, are using a novel coupon in their farm-paper advertising, which they claim has practically doubled the inquiries. Briefly, the coupon includes a diagram of the two types of barns common in Canada, with dimension lines, so that the farmer can fill in the dimensions and get an estimate from the manufacturer as to the cost of sheathing his barn with steel shingles. In explaining the benefits of the coupon, A. T. Enlow, advertising manager of the concern, says: "Our long experience with the farmer has convinced us that he will read anything half-way interesting, but he will not go to a great deal of trouble writing letters. No doubt this is largely due to the fact that his stationery is of an uncertain quality, the ink dried up, and the pen rusted. We figure that by making it easy for him to write in and find out what it would cost to steel shingle his barn, . -mid save him a lot of figuring and at the same time the association of ideas would bring results. As a result we find we are getting more than twice the number of inquiries from the same space as we did before i this diagram idea." A canvas <>f twenty-five advertisements in a modern
i/.ine Drives the following methods of inducing a prospective

use coupons written in letter form requiring only the name

the cii.-tomer.
e offer a catalog, booklet, or calendar.

-k your dealer."
Three urge a sample order.
ofTf-rs to send a sample ;

258. Type of Advertisements. It would l>e impossible to

i..u- form- MIK! deviee- employed to sell good-.


There are, however, several kinds so often met that it seems
profitable to mention them.

A. The Prestige Advertisement. This form has little value
except to great corporations or old businesses. It consists of
a display of little more than the name or trade-mark of the
advertiser and its effectiveness depends entirely upon the
general knowledge of the public. Tiffany and Company of
New York generally run only the firm name and "Silverware.*'

In small advertisements we frequently meet the "card" type ;
p. g., "J. J. Weber, Coal and Wood." While this type of small
advertisement serve^ its purpose fairly well, it is probably true
that a little thought would enable the writer to do much better.
At best the announcement is only a passive kind of reminder.
One enterprising coal man advertises, "We'll make it hot for
you, and we'll deliver it to you, too the best coal we can buy
in all Pennsylvania." While this has in it a bit of a trick, the
effect is not bad because the reader knows when he begins that
it will "turn into" something.

Some trade-marks have become so well known that they
are rated as worth many thousands of dollars to the business.
Among them are "His Master's Voice," the blue bell of the Bell
Telephone Company, the signature of Thomas A. Edison, the
Gold Dust Twins, and Uneeda Biscuit. The owners of these
well known designs can advertise effectively by the mere display
of the trade-mark. But one has only to look through any
magazine to find dozens of trade-marks he doesn't remember
having seen before and would not recognize if he saw .main,
thus showing the futility of any but the great corporation-'
using this method of advertising.

B. The Jingle Type. The Spotless Town advertisements
illustrate this sort. The advertiser seeks to associate some
nursery rhyme or light verse with his product. The type is not
practical for the small advertiser because its value depends on
continued and widespread publicity.

C. The Trick Advertisement. Advertisements are
becoming honest they tell the truth about the goods. The


old dishonest forms of the following kind, once common, have
gone forever :


in a speech once said that many people are literally


by failure to care for their health- Use Pills etc., etc.

Such tricks to secure- attention are practically sure to react
against the advertiser.

D. The Humorous Trick Advertisement. There is a type
of trick advertisement which is fairly effective because it is
recognized at a glance as a trick. The chief fault is lack of
dignity. "Does your top leak?" heads an effective advertise-
ment of an automobile top dressing. "Did you ever have a fit?"
attracts a good deal of attention to a tailor's window. The
good-natured trick is accepted good-naturedly, but the studied
attempt to lead a reader into an advertisement by interest
other than that which rightfully belongs to the subject is
n -cognized as a form of dishonesty.

259. The Overdrawn Advertisement. Although there are
people in the world who will believe anything in print, most
people are suspicious of too great promises or other over-state-
ment. N-xt to the trick advertisement, the over-stated adver-
tUement is poorest. Over-statement may take the form of too
t promises; e. g., "Why be content with 6% when you can
mak- >r "It will be the happiest day of your life when you

put on Tearproof Hose." Sometimes it is found in extravagant
iptioii u in the advertisement of oleomargarine, "sweet
lily and pun- as the ruin-washed buttercup." The hopes
of thousands of sut't'erers are raised temporarily by statements
like the following: "We positively guarantee to cure con-
Mimption." Any advertising value which such a statement
to to the fact that it holds out a straw to the grasp of
M. Advertisements in earlier days too often made
nit claims. At one time fully half of them were


Fortunately we are coming into a saner phase. Most maga-
zines and newspapers now refuse to publish advertisements
which they know to be false. Recently one of the largest
weeklies in America refused a full-page advertisement from an
automobile company on the ground that the advertisement
asserted impossible conditions. The automobile company
insisted that the magazine investigate. Accordingly 'a jury of
engineers was sent to the factory* They reported the a-
tions to be justified, and the advertisement was accepted.


Bring to class one example of each of the following adver-
tising types:

1. A description that creates a desire.

2. An advertisement depicting misfortune or suffering.

3. An advertisement with the story type of beginning.

4. An advertisement addressed to ambitious men.

5. An advertisement intended for well-to-do men.


Bring to class examples of the following types of adver-
tisement :

1. The trick advertisement bad type.

2. The good-natured trick.

3. The astounding fact advertisement.

4. A probably dishonest advertisement.

5. The jingle type.

6. Any advertisement you consider unusually good.


Cut from some newspaper or magazine any picture which
will illustrate an advertisement you have in mind. Paste it
upon a sheet of paper and write the advertisement. Exchange
with other members of the class and vote by ballot for the bc>t.
Discuss with the teacher the three receiving the most votes.


Absolute Nominative. The nominative case of a noun or pronoun, used
with a participle in an independent phrase.

VMPLE: The wind dying down, we started.

Abstract Noun. The name of a quality or characteristic; or any noun that
is not the name of some concrete person or thing.

KXAMPI.I:.-: goodness, evil, anger, beauty.

Accusative Case. See Case.

Accusative-Dative Case. See Case.

Active Voice. The forms of a verb representing the subject as the doer of

an action.

EXAMPLE: The fire burns the forest.

Address, Nominative of. A noun or pronoun representing a person or
thing directly addressed. See Case.

Kx AMPLE: John, come here.

Adjective. A word used to modify the meaning of a noun or a pronoun.
Adjective Clause. A clause used to modify a noun or a pronoun.

1 EXAMPLE: The man whom you saw is my brother.
Adjective Phrase. A phrase used to modify a noun or a pronoun.

Kx AMPLE: The man with the brown hat is my brother.

Adjunct Accusative. An additional object used with a direct object after
Us of calling, choosiruj, making, naming, and some other verbs of
Minilar meaning. An adjective, as well as a substantive, may be in
ruction (example 3).

.MPLES: 1. Ye call me chief.

2. We chose Mr. Wilson President.

3. The boys painted the fence brown.

This construction is also sometimes called the objective complement.
Adverb. at modifies a verb, an adjective, or another adverb.

A-: t degree, manner, place, time; they may affirtn or

leny or in<; VOCATIONAL ENGLISH Demonstrative Pronouns. This, that, these, and those, when used instead of nouns. When modifying a substantive, they are Demonstrative Adjectives. EXAMPLES: That is the best one (pronoun). That book is best (adjective). Dependent Clause. See Subordinate Clause. Descriptive Adjective. An adjective that tolls the kind or condition of some person or thing. Any adjective that is not Limiting (q. v.). Direct Object. See Object. Direct Question. See Indirect Question. Direct Quotation. See Indirect Quotation. Double Narrative. Unnecessary repetition in telling what has happened. Section 156. Double Negative. The use of two negatives when one is sufficient. EXAMPLE: ng) (Right) I haven't had no dinner. I haven't had any dinner. Double Possessive. Use of of and the possessive sign in the same phrase. EXAMPLE: A friend of Broicn's. Emphatic Verb Forms. Verb phrases formed by the auxiliary verb do (did) and a main verb, used in questions and negative statement- \\ell as for emphasis. EXAMPLES: I did do it. I did not do it. Did he do it? Exclamation, Nominative of. The use of a noun or a pronoun independ- ently in exclamation. EXAMPLE: The rascal! I was afraid he could not be trusted. Exclamatory Sentence. A sentence expressing strong feeling, and followed l>y an exclamation mark.

EXAMPLE: What a beautiful day it is!

Expletives. The words there and it when used to introduce the verb
, before the subject.

EXAMPLES: There were six of us.

// is true that he cannot go.

Feminine Gender. The form of a noun or pronoun denoting the female
EXAMPLES: woman, lioness, heroine, sultana, she.


Finite Verb. Any verb form except the infinitive, the participle, and the

Future Perfect Tense. A verb form used to express the completion of an

act in the future. See Section 26.

Future Tense. A verb form used to denote time to come.
Gender. The distinction between words to indicate sex, or lack of sex.

There are three genders masculine, feminine, and neuter. Words

that may be either masculine or feminine are often said to be of common
EXAMPLE : I did not know the person who came.

Genitive Case. The forms of a noun that show possession; also called

Possessive Case. See Case.
Gerund. A verb form in ing when used partly as a verb and partly as a


EXAMPLE: Running foot-races is good for keeping one's health.

Gerundive Phrase. A phrase consisting of a gerund and the words that

go with it.

Grammar. A systematic description of the laws and usages of a language.
Idiom. "A mode of expression peculiar to a language; .... a phrase

or form of words approved by the usage of a language." [Century

Imperative Mood. A verb form identical with the infinitive (without to)

and used to express a direct command.

EXAMPLE : Go! you are not wanted here.

Imperative Sentence. A sentence containing an imperative verb.
EXAMPLE: Pass to the right.

Impersonal Subject. It used as a subject when there is no definite ante-

.MI- 1. 1.: It rained nearly all day.

Indefinite Adjective. An adjective which may also be used as an indefinite

MPLE: Any true man will be welcome.

Indefinite Article. See Article.

Indefinite Pronoun. A pronoun that does not refer to any particular
person, i 3 n-h \\-irds as an;/, ich, til/icr, other, some,

when iiM-d in pla-e .e \\eln-:



Independent Clause. See Clause.

Independent Elements in a Sentence. Words or groups of words that do

not grammatically belong to either the subject or the predicate. These

include words of address, exclamatory nominatives, interjections,

nominative absolutes, parenthetical expressions.
Indicative Mood. The verb forms employed in ordinary statements and

in questions; the commonest forms of the verb.
Indirect Object. A noun or pronoun used without a preposition to name

a person or thing to whom or for whom something is done. With

active verbs, the indirect object usually immediately precedes tlie

direct object.

EXAMPLES: The boy's father gave him a watch.
John bought his sister a present.

Indirect Question. Questions are direct or indirect. The former empl< > ys
t IK- exact words of the person asking it.

EXAMPLE: Where :iro you going?

The indirect question does not use the questioner's exact words, but puts
the substance of the question in a subordinate clause.

EXAMPLE: lie asked me i-hcre I was going.

Notice that the indirect question does not require a c/aestion mark.
Indirect Quotation. A report of a statement in words other than those

of the speaker.

Direct Quotation: "/ will go" said Tom.
Indirect Quotation: Tom said he would go.

Note that an indirect quotation does not employ quotation marks.
Infinitive. The first or dictionary form of a verb. In a sentence it is

usually preceded by to, which is then called the sign of the infinitive.

The infinitive is most frequently used as a noun, sometimes

adjective or an adverb.

EXAMPLES: To travel is to learn (noun).

He is a man to be honored (adjective).
That work is very hard to do (adverb).

The gerund (q. v.) is sometimes called the infinitive in ing.
Infinitive Clause. A group of words consisting of an infinitive with a

subject, in the accusative (objective) case, and perhaps a predicate

noun or pronoun or a direct object. See Section 64 (e).
Infinitive Phrase. A group of words containing an infinitive without a


KXAMPLE: To travel so far was more than I could do.


Inflection. The variations in the form of a word according to its con-
struction or meaning.
Intensive Pronoun. A compound personal pronoun used for emphasis.

EXAMPLE: I myself heard him.

Interjection. An exclamatory word without grammatical construction
in the sentence and not of any other part of speech.

I XAMPLE: Hurrah! here comes the band.
Interrogative Adjective. An adjective used in asking a question.

EXAMPLE: Which girl do you mean?
Interrogative Adverb. An adverb used in asking a question.

EXAMPLE: Why do you ask me this?

Interrogative Pronoun. A pronoun used to ask a question. The inter-
rogative pronouns are who (including whose and whom), which, and what;
sometimes with the suffix ever added to the simple forms.

Interrogative Sentence. A sentence that asks a direct question.

Intransitive Verb. See Transitive Verb.

Inverted Order. The less common arrangement of a sentence, in which
a part, or all, of the predicate precedes the subject; also called transposed
order. Most direct questions and exclamations are in inverted order.

EXAMPLES: Why did he not come? (Two words of the predicate

precede the subject.)
How cold it is today! (Two words of the predicate

precede the subject.)
Irregular Verb. See Regular Verb.

Limiting Adjective. An adjective that points out or denotes number, as
distinguished from a descriptive adjective. The demonstrative adjec-
tives, indefinite adjectives, interrogative adjectives, numeral adjectives,
pronominal adjectives, and the articles are limiting adjectives.
Linking Verb. An intransitive verb that connects the subject with a
licate noun or pronoun, or a predicate adjective.

VMPLE: The sky looks dark.
Masculine Gender. The form of a noun or a pronoun denoting the male

-KS: man, lion, hero, sultan. In-.

Modifier. ip of words which changes the meaning of another

: indicate the manner of the

ancrtion. Three moods are n<> i nulish: indic.c

;rictive, ,;


Natural Order. An arrangement of the sentence in which the subject
precedes the predicate, as distinguished from inverted (or transposed)

Natural Superlative. An adjective or adverb which in its simple form
(positive degree) denotes the superlative (highest degree).

EXAMPLE: omnipotent.

Negative, Double. See Double Negative.

Neuter Gender. The gender of an object without sex.

EXAMPLES: book, street, it.

Nominative Case. 800 Case.

Non-Restrictive Modifier. See Restrictive Modifier.

Noun. The name of a person, place, or thing. See Abstract Noun,

Collective Noun, Common Noun, Proper Noun.
Noun Clause. A clause that has the function of a noun in the sentence.

EXAMPLE : I thought that he was insane.

Number. The inflection of nouns, pronouns, and verbs to indicate one
or more than one.

Numerals. Words indicating number. They may be (a) nouns, (b) ad-
jectives, (c) adverbs.

EXAMPLES: (a) Put four in the first column.

(b) /''"// Dinners make a quart rt.

(c) I saw him twice in a week.

Object, Direct. The receiver of the action expressed by a transitive verb.
EXAMPLE: They struck the ML

Object, Indirect. See Indirect Object.

Object, Secondary. See Secondary Object.

Objective, Adverbial. See Adverbial Accusative (Objective).

Objective Case. See Case.

Objective Complement. See Adjunct Accusative.

Participle. A form of the verb used partly like an adjective. The past
participle is the third of the principal parts of a verb. The present
participle ends in ing. The forms in ing, however, may be gerunds
(q. v.)..

EXAMPLES of participles: Finding him asleep, I left at once.
I saw him fishing for b.

Participial Phrase. A phrase consisting of a participle and its comple-
ments or modifiers.

EXAMPLE : Finding him asleep, I left at once.


Parts of Speech. The classes of words as to use. They are eight in
number: nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, prepositions,
conjunctions, and interjections.

Passive Voice. See Voice.

Past Participle. The hist of the principal parts of a verb; used in making
the passive voice.

M PLE : go went gone.

Past Perfect Tense. The tense of a verb that represents action complef ed
in the past.

KXAMPLE: He had gone when I arrived.

Past Tense. A verb form used to indicate time past; the second of the

principal parts.

EXAMPLE: He went yesterday.

Perfect Tenses. The verb phrases which show completion; they are

indicated by various forms of the auxiliary verb have.
Person. Inflection of a substantive or a verb to indicate whether the

speaker (first person), a person spoken to (second person), or a person

or thing spoken of (third person) is meant.
Personal Pronouns. The common pronouns which represent first person,

second person, and third person. See Sections 57-61.
Phrase. A group of related words without a subject and a predicate.
Pluperfect. Another name for the past perfect tense (q. v.).
Plural Number. See Singular Number.
Positive Degree. See Comparative Degree.
Possession, Genitive of. See Case.

Possessive Adjective. The possessive form of a pronoun when
'1 adjectively.

EXAMPLES: My books are in your desk.
Her pencil fell to the floor.

Possessive Case. See Genitive Case.

Possessive Pronoun. The possessive form of a pronoun when it is us'-d


.MPLES: Mim is the green book.

)'<"//.- ifl the red our. Predicate. The a> questioning part of a sentence. It mo-i

BOW! the naming part, or Hie subject. The basis of a pn-.!
is a v
Predicate Adjective. An adjective in the predicate desrrilimi; <>r limiting

the Hll>.< EXAMPLE: Grapes are purple. 362 VOCATIONAL ENGLISH Predicate Nominative. A noun or pronoun in the predicate that means, or refers to, the same person or thing as the subject; also called Predicate Noun or Predicate Pronoun. EXAMPLES: Washington was President. Would that I had been he. Predicate Verb. The verb, or asserting word, in a predicate. Preposition. A word used to show the relation of a substantive that depends on it grammatically, with some other part of the sentence. 1 !.\ AMPLE: He came from the city. Prepositional Phrase. A phrase introduced by a preposition. ii'i.i;: He came /row the city. Present Participle. The ing form of the verb when used adjectively. "ru:: The xlt-i f>iny man lay quiet.

Present Perfect Tense. The forms of the verb representing completion
cf action in present time.

I'.: \ AMPLE: I have seen many >t range >ights.

Present Tense. The forms of a verb that make assertions in regard to

present time.
Principal Parts of a Verb. The three forms which furnish the basis for

conjugation. They are the present indicative, the past indicative, and

the past participle.

MIM.K: Present *M. Past *
add to the idea of the word modified.

EXAMPLE: The old man, tired and discouraged, gave up the task.

Retained Object. When an active sentence containing two complement^
of different kinds (direct and indirect objects, direct and secondary
objects, etc.) is made passive, one of the objects (or complement
kept after the passive verb and is called a retained object.

EXAMPLE: Active They gave him a /><;/; (direct object). Passive He was given a book (retained object). Secondary Object The verbs axk and li-ach sometime., take two obj. . the direct object, indicating the person who receives the action; tin- other, the .secondary object, indicating what is asked or taught. EXAMHI:: The teacher a-krd mt direct object > a question (secondary

Sentence. Son Complex Sentence, Complex-Compound Sentence, Com-
pound Sentence, Declarative Sentence, Exclamatory Sentence, Impera-
tive Sentence, Interrogative Sentence, Simple Sentence.

Sign of the Infinitive. See Infinitive.


Simple Predicate. A predicate containing but one predicate verb or verb

Simple Sentence. A sentence that contains but one clause, that makes

hut one assertion; distinguished from complex and compound sentences.
Simple Subject. A subject containing but one principal word or subject

Singular Number. The form of a word that denotes one person or thing

is called the Singular form. The form that denotes more than one is

called the Plural form.

EXAMPLES: Singular man, book, he.
Plural men, books, they.

Split Infinitive. An infinitive of which the main part is separated from
to by one or more words, usually adverbs. See Section 55.

Subject. The part of a sentence that tells about whom or about what
something is said.

Subject Substantive. The principal word (or group of words) in a subject,
usually a noun or a pronoun.

MPLE: The brown house on the west side of the street is mine.

Subjunctive Mood. A mood of the verb used to express a few special
meaning >u<-h as wish, uncertainty, condition contrary to fact, etc. EXAMPLES: Long live the President. If I were king, I would do differently. Subordinate Clause. A clause that does not make complete sense by itself. EXAMPLE: The man whom you saw is my father. Subordinating Conjunction. See Conjunction. Substantive. A noun or pronoun, or any word or group of words used a. noun. EXAMPLE: ,s'/ iiiimj ilou-n the banisters was forbidden. Substantive Clause. See Noun Clause. Superlative Degree. The form of an adjective or adverb indicating the highest degree of a quality or quantity. See Comparative Degree. Tense. The forms of the verb (and verb phrases t used to indicate differ- ences of time. Six tenses are ordinarily recognized : simple (1 ) 1 ' ent, (2) Past, (3) Future; compound (4) Present Perfect, (5) Past Perfect, (tij Future Perfect. Transitive Verb. A verb that represents the action as passing over to a direct object. EXAMPLE: John struck James. APPENDIX 365 Any verb that is not transitive is Intransitive. Transposed Order. See Inverted Order. Verb. A word used to assert action or existence; the principal word in a predicate. Verb Phrase. A group of words which taken together make up a verb form. A verb phrase usually consists of one or more auxiliary verbs followed by a participle or an infinitive of the main verb. KXAMPLES: I may be driving the car. I can go. Verbals. Participles, infinitives, and gerunds. These are words which, although formed from verbs and retaining some of the functions of the verb, have also some of the functions of other parts of speech. Voice. The change in the forms of a verb to show whether the subject is acting (Active. Voice) or acted upon (Passive Voice). EXAMPLES: Active I struck the boy. Passive I was struck by the car. APPENDIX B BUSINESS FORMS FOR TRANSMITTING MONEY Little money is now sent through the mail in the form of currency, because there are so many safe means at. hand. Small amounts may be sent in postage stamps if you have reason to believe that stamps will bo acceptable. There are many forms of payment, four of which are here explained. 1. The Bank Check. Payment within short distances is now almost universally made by means of the bank check. A man deposits with a bank a sum of money, say one hundred dollars. He has a right to issue checks or orders upon the bank to pay to himself or some one else, amounts of money up to one hundred dollars. However, if he should overdraw, i. e., issue a ch'-ck for an amount greater than the sum he has in the bank, the bank will not pay any part of the clieck, but will return it to the person nting it for payment. Usually the bank stamps such a check I'. (Hot sufficient fur The check should not be used for long-distance payments. The banks of a large city o^ome other definite section of the country support what is known as :i clearing house, to which clerks from all the banks KUJ>-
[>orting it go oiuv every day. Each clerk takes with him, bound in sep-
arate package--, all the checks his bank has paid out for each bank
in the clearing house district. At an arranged time, usually at the ringing
of a bell, these mi>


X. V. C. .. X.'u York City
X. / - .-. Zealand


Okla Oklahoma

Out Ontario

Pa. (Penn P'-nnsvlvania

P I. I Prm<-r Edward Island Philadelphia I' I. .Philippine Inlands Pol p.. 1 tad, Polish I', i:. P Pru- Prussia Island i. America S. Afr.. Sask.. . S. C.... Scand.. Scot.... S.D.(S.Dak.) Sic Sp...-' Sw.(Swed.).. Switz Syr Tenn Tex Turk U.S U.S. A ut Va Vt Wash W.I.(W.Ind. W.Va Wis Wyo General: a. (adj.) adjective A.B. (B.A.). .Bachelor of Arts Abp Archbishop ace accusative act active A. D in the year of our Lord A. D. C Aide-de-camp ad. (ads.) .... advertisement(s) adj adjective Adjt. (Adj ).. Adjutant ad lib at pleasure Adm \ir-

Litt. D








M. A


II. i:
H i: i



masc masculine plur plural

math mathematics P. M Postmaster

max maximum P. O Post office

M. C Member of Congress pol. eton political economy

M. D Doctor of Medicine pop population

M. E Methodist Episcopal poss possessive

med medicine; medieval p. p past participle

memo memorandum pr present

Messrs Messieurs (plural of Mr.) pred predicate

Mgr Monsignor; manager prep preposition; preparatory

mid middle Pres President; pr

mil military; militia Prin Principal

niin minute Prof professor

Min. Pirn. Minister PleniiKitrntiarv pron pronoun; pronounced

misc miscellaneous Prot Protestant

Mile Mademoiselle pro tern for the time being

inin millimeter prov province

Mme. Madame pub publisher; published

Moii Monday punct punctuation

M. P Member of Parliament q question; quire

ms. or MS. Q. E. D which waa to be proved

(plural mss (quod erat demon-

or MSS.). . manuscript strandum)

mt mountain Q. M quartermaster

Mus. Doc Doctor of Music Q. M. G Quartermaster General

n. noun q. v which see (quod \

naut nautical qy query

neut neuter R. (R6aum.).Reaumer (a thermo-

nom nominative metric system)

Nov November R. A Rear Admiral; Royal

obj object; objective Academy

obs obsolete R. C Red Cross

Oct October rec. sec recording secretry

par paragraph Rect Rector

part participle ref reference; reformed

pass passive regt regiment

pat patent(ed) rel relative

Ph.B Bachelor of Philosophy Rep Representative; Repub-

Ph.D Doctor of Philosophy lican

Ph.G Graduate in Pharmacy Rev. Ver Revised Version

pinx he (or she) painted it r. f rapid-fire

(pinxit) R. F. D Rural Free Delivery

plff plaintiff rhet rhetoric





Rom. Cath
R. P. O....

V. P.

P.t. Hon.
Pit. R-v.
B. 38

a \



sculp.. .






.. Royal Mail Steamer
.. Royal Navy

Roman Catholic
. .Railroad Post Office
.. Reply if you please
(French phrase with
this meaning)
Jit Honorable
.. Right Reverend

Saint(s); section(s)
.. Salvation Army

.. Saturday
.. Bachelor of Science
. .small capital
.. science
.. Scripture
.. he (or she) carved it

(Lat. sculpsit)
. .section; secretary
. .Senate; Senator
. .September
. .sergeant
. .shilling
.. Society of Jesus

wireless distress signal
. .sovereign
. .spelling

. specific gravity
.. .the Senate and the peo-
ple of Rome
. .Senior

-t; subjun

subst.. .


Sun.. ..
Supt.. .
surg.. .
sy n ....
tech.. ..



Test.. .

treas.. .
Tues.. .
Univ.. .
U. S. A.









V. P



Xmas.. ..

Zool. .

. substantive

. suffix


. Superintendent

. surgeon

. synonym

. technical ; technology

.telegram; telephone

. territory

. Testament


. trustee ; transpose ;

. treasurer
. Tuesday

.Universalist; university
. United States Army ;

United States of

.United States Mail;

United States Marine
.United States Navy
.United States Ship
. variant
. Vatican
. venerable
. volume
.Woman's Christian

Temperance Union
. .Christmas
.Young Men's Christian




The great books have become so much a part of conversation and are
referred to so often even in everyday affairs newspapers, business letters,
advertising, etc. that a knowledge of them is necessary even from tin-
mere standpoint of dollars and cents. If we add to the materkl udvant a in.
the pleasure, the moral development, and the mental stimulation derived
from the great books of the ages, we must feel that any young hu-
man or woman cannot afford to be ignorant of the books which have had
so great a part in building our civilization.

The following list should be regarded as a minimum. The authors
have chosen the list with the qualifications and limitations of the high-
school student in mind, and have therefore omitted many great books
for instance, many of the great plays of Shakspere because they might
not hold the interest of youth. You should, during your high-school course,
read every one of the following books:

David CopiH-rji* Id Dickens

Jane Eyre Bronte

John Halifax Mrs. Mulock-Craik

Ben Hur Wallace

Ivanhoe Scott

Silas Marner George Eliot

Treasure Ixlnml Stevenson

The Three Guardsmen Dumas

The Virginian W i

Robinson Crusoe Defoe

The Lnfit Dfiiin of Pompeii Lytton

Tom Saicyer Clemens

.4 iitohiogruphy Franklin

Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm Wiggin

The Man Without a Country Hale

. The Sketch Book Irving

Little \\'unun Alcott

The Lady of the Lake Scott

Scottish Chiefs Porter

Ramona Jackson

The Little Shepherd of Kingdom Come .... Fox

Lorna Doone Blackmore

The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table Holmes

The Golden Treasury Palgrave



References are to pages.

d, the sound of, 184
A and an:

distinction in use, 352

omission of, 106

capitals in, 161

lists of, 369-375

periods after, 144, 277

to be used sparingly, 162, 281
Absolute nominative, 351
Abstract nouns, 22, 351
Accept and except, 176, 196
Accidentally (not accidently\ 179
Accordingly an adverb, 97

semicolon needed before it, 131
Accusative case-uses, 90, 353

Dative-dative case, 66, 69-72
Active voice:

change from, to passive, 39, 40,
108, 230, 365

definition, 39, 351

progressive, signs of, 41

commas with words of, 121

how punctuated, 129, 277

nominative of, 351

of person to whom one is writing,
needed, 278

writer's, needed in letter, 276

not ajetive), 182
use, 351

coinp-in-.n. 77-80

definition. 77, :;:,!

hyphen in compound. 167

or adverb, 81

phrase, I

position of, 77

poswssive, frfi, OS

predicate, 12, 77, 81, 82, 361

restrictive and non-restrictive, 123

series separated by commas, 116
Adjunct accusative, 351
Adjustment, letter of, 315
Adore, misuse of, 243

adjective or, 81

comparison of, 78

definition, 351

"flat" adverbs, 83

redundant adverbs, 95

relative, 96

"where" adverbs, 87
Adverbial accusative (objective),


Adverbial clause, 352
Adverbial phrase, 352

catching attention in, 343

construction of, 342

interesting, 206

overdrawn, 349

personal appeal in, 343, 344

transition in, 345, 346

types of, 341, 347-349

writing of, 341, 342

benefits from, 340

growth of, 339

Adrirr and (UfolM, 176, 196

Advise trite in letters, 287
Aeroplane or airplane (not areo-

planc), 179
Affn-t and t-ffn-t, 176, 196

either preposition or con-
junction, 99
. misused for n-j-iia '. '1 10,



Aggravated, misused for exasperated,


defined, 352

of pronoun and antecedent, 62-65

of subject and verb, 57-60
Aint, 61, 248

All as indefinite pronoun, 63
All right two words, 166
Allusion and illusion, 196
Alphabetizing, exercise in, 157
Almost one word, 166

distinguished from most, 85
Already one word, 166
Alright no such word, 166
Also adverb, 97

not always set off by commas,


Altar and alter, 176
Although one word, 166
Altogether one word, 166
Always one word, 166
Ambiguity, commas to avoid, 1_'7
American speech, faults in, 181
Among and between, 90, 91
And and to, 99
Angel and angle, 176

agreement of pronoun with, 62-65

defined, 352

disagreement between pronoun
and, 232

every one, etc., as, 64

reference to uncertain, 109
Anybody as indefinite pronoun, ti.'i
Any one as indefinite pronoun, 64
Anyplace, anywhere, etc., 87
Apiece one word, 166

defined, 352

in possessive forms, 27, 28

wrongly used in pronouns, 68
Appear, when followed by adjec-
tive, 82

Application for a position, letter of,


Application in person, 197, 301-303

commas for, 125

dashes for, 136

defined, 352

nominative, 67

objective, 70

person of, 22

Arctic (not Artie), 179, 182, 186

defined, 352

distinction between, :r>2

omission of, 106
As as, so os, 100
Ascent and assent, 176
Ask past is asked, 36, 179, 182, 228
Association, errors of, 235
At and to, 90
At about bad, 247
At hand trite, 287
Al Mi-tic (notathaletic), 179, Iv.'
Athletics, number of, 26
Attack no such form as attackted,


Auger and augur, 176, 196
Aught as indefinite pronoun, <>:;
Aught, naught, and nntjht, 71
Auxiliary verbs:

defined, 352

instead of subjunctive, "."
Awfully, misuse of, 242

"Baby blunder," 15

Back of, in back of, 92

Bad and badly, 84

Balance, for rest or remainder, 241

Balance in a sentence, 202, 231

Bare and bear, 176

Base and bass, 176

Bdss no change for plural. 23


auxiliary verb,



conjugation, 32, 33
eight simple forms of, 32
followed by predicate adjective,


imperative of, 50
subjunctive conjugation, 51
use in passive, 39, 40, 41
use in progressive forms, 33, 41
.', 36,38

- with, 124

Befon either preposition or con-
junction, 99
Beg, as used in letters, 281, 288

, 36, 38
Beginning :i theme, 234

'. distinguished from bequest,

Bein's no such form, 61, 248

-ing, etc., in letters, 289
Berth and birth, 1 76

le and besides, 176

's adverb, 97

>ng, 90, 91
Bible, capitalization in relation to,

;, 38
Biennial one word, 166

-no form blowed, 36, 38, 248
. combinations ending in one

3 indefinite pro-
nouns. ',:;. (ii

. 280
Born (never borned), 248

:i'l bftrm. 170

/r//i. 17'. I

no. in

Brake and break, 176
Break, 36

; ren (not brethem), 1


no such form as brung, 36, 48
Bunch, misuse of, 242
Burst no such forms as busted or

bursted, 36, 38, 248
Business correspondence:

appearance of, 264

paragraphing, 208, 209
Business, the growth of, 263

advantages of the letter in, 263
Business letter, qualities of a good,


Buying letter, the, 309, 312
By as prefix followed by hyphen,

By and to, 91

Can, as auxiliary verb, 352

misused for may, 240
Cannon no change for plural, 23
Cannon and canon, 176, 196



Direct and indirect quotation, 141,

234, 358

Direct object, 11, 69, 360
Directness, desirable in business

letters, 266, 267
Disremember, 248
Dive, 36, 38, 248
Division of words at ends of lines,

Do, 36, 38
Do and did in emphatic verb forms,

33, 34, 41, 352
Don't for doesn't, 59
Doc. impolite abbreviation, 248
Double narrative, 229, 230, :
Double negative, 84, 356
Double possessive, :
Doubt expressed by question mark,


Doubtlessly bad, 248-
Draft, the bank, 314, 367
Drag, 36, 88
Draw, 36
Drink, 36, 38
Drive, forms of, 41, 42
Drown no such form as drownded,


Due to, erroneous use of, 93
Duly, usually needless in letters, 288
Dyeing and dying, 177

e, the sound of, 184
Each, as indefinite pronoun, 63
agreement of verb with subjects

modified by, 59
Each other and one another, 74
Eat, 36

ed often not a syllable, 163
"Eddies" in the sentence, 120
Editorial, the, 259, 260
Effect and affect, 176
e. g., semicolon before, 132
Either, as indefinite pronoun, 63
Ellipses a row of periods, 144

Else possessive, "somebody else's,"

etc., 74

em-dash, the, 137
Emigrant and immigrant, 177
Emigration and immigration, 177
Emphasis, repetition for, 229
Emphatic forms of verb, 33, 34, 356

signs of, 41
Employer, the stenographer and

the, 274

en-dash, the, 137
English, importance of good, 9
Enunciation, 182
Envelope, the, 283, 284
Equally as bad, 247
Errors, types of, 14-10, 103-110,


Esteemed in letters, 281, 2^
etc. not part of quotation, 141
Ever, combinations ending in one

word, 16C

wrong with rarely or seldom, 85
Everlasting one word, 166
Every, agreement of verb with sub-
jects modified by, 59
Everybody, as antecedent, 64
Every one as indefinite pronoun,


Every time two words, li>
Except not now used as conjunc-
tion, 99

distinguished from accept, 176
Exclamation mark, 128, 1 4 1
Exclamation, nominative of, 356
Expletives, 356
Express money orders, 31 1
Expressive English, 203, 204
Extra as prefix followed by hy-
phen, 167
Extravagant use of words, 242

Facilitating tor felicitating, 241
Facts in newspaper writing, 253 ff.
Faint and feint, 177



Faithfully yours, 282
Faker and fakir, 177
Familiarity in letters, 291
Farewell one word, 166
Farther and further, 177, 196
Faults, in American speech, 181
in planning a theme, 212-214

;-fmj (not Febuary), 179, 182,

A hen followed b\ adjective, 82
Fellow, in compounds followed by

hyphen, 167
Feminine gender, 22, 356

. distinguished from less, 85
Figures, use of, 169, 170, 276, 280
Finally and finely, 177
Fine, misuse of, 242
Firm names, possessive of, 28
Fish singular and plural alike, 23

misuse of, 242
"Flat" adverbs, 83
Flee, 36, 38
Flow, 36, 38
Fly, 36

maybe transitive or intransitive,


Folding a letter, 284
Follow-up campaign, the, 331
Follow-up letter, the, 329

; j (reposition or conjunc-

.^n plurals, 24, 25
Form ;. 328

o< 1 of printing, 330 Formal! i/ :\\u\ formerly, 177 1 tli> Inttir. 7~i

ForthrnniiTujow word. HUi
ot/otoard), I7'.

ssions ax

tC. bad salutation.

Funny, misuse of, 243

Further and furthermore adverbs,


Future perfect tense, 32
Future tense, 31, 33, 357

shall and will in, 46-48

signs of, 41, 42

Gait and gate, 177

defined, 357

in pronouns, 65

negligible in nouns, 22
Genitive case:

form of, 27, 28

same as possessive, 27

use of, 28, 29
Gentlemen as salutation in letter,


Gents bad, 248

defined, 357

distinguished from participle, 68

possessive with, 68

unattached, 108
Gilt and guilt, 177
Give, 36
Go, 36, 37

God, names for, capitalized, 160
Good and well, 84
Government (not govermenC), 179,

182, 187

"Grafted" sentences, 227
Grammar and everyday usage, 9
(irammatical Nomenclature, Joint
Committee on, 27, 42, 62, 66,
68, 123

( irammatical terms delinnl. .V>1-:'..~>
rous (not grevion^, 17 ( .. Is7

/ and iin'::lii. 177, 196
Grow, 36, 38, 248

II abitual action, won' ss,49

1 1 ackne veil expressions, a list of, 244
lln.l 9M0U, (\\, 246



Haint no such word, 248

Half, in compounds followed by

hyphen, 167
Hand, compounds with, 248

at hand and to hand in letters, 287

hand you in letters, 281, 288
Hang, 36, 38, 196
Hanging participle, 107
Hate, misuse of, 243

as auxiliary verb, 352

of misused for, 36, 61

subjunctive of, 51

tense forms, 32

use in perfect tenses, 32, 41
He to refer to uncertain gender, 64
Heading in a business letter, 276-278
Heal and heel, 177
Healthy for healthful, 241
Hear and here, 177
Heat, 36

no such form as Mt, - 1 ( >
Heavy style in letters, 293
Height (not heighth), 179
Hence adverb, 97

semicolon needed before, 131
Herewith overworked in letters,


Hew and hue, 111
Hisself no such word, 74, 249
Historical present inadvisable, 234
History (not histry), 182, 187
Hoard and horde, 177
Homonyms, a list of, 176-179
Hoping, etc., in letters, 289
Horribly, misuse of, 243
Horrid, misuse of, 243
However adverb, 97

semicolon needed before, 131
Hundred (not hunderd), 182

use in compound words, 165-167

use in dividing a word at end of
line, 164

7: capitalized when used as a word,


when better than we,- 294
when not better than we, 308
wrongly omitted, 16, 235

i, the sound of, 184

/ am, in concluding letters, 289

Idea (not idee), 182

Idiom, 29, 83, 90, 92-94, 357

Idiomatic use of prepositions, 92-94

i. e., semicolon before, 132

// and whether, 100

//, subjunctive in clauses with, 53,


ivstiirt iv<- and non-restrictive clauses with, 123 Illogical arrangement, 213, 214 Illogical phrasing, 233 Illy no such word, 248 Immigrant and emigrant, 177 Immigration and emigration, 111 Impassable and impassible, 178, 196 Imperative mood, 50, 357 Impression, first importance in letters, 319 In and into, 91 inanimate objects, names of, rarely made posscssiv Inasmuch one word, 166 Incidentally (not incidently), 179 Incongruous ideas, 235 Indeed adverb, 97 semicolon needed before, 131 when set off by commas, 121 Indefinite adjectives, 64, 357 Indefinite pronouns: list of, 63 number in, 63, 64 possessive of else forms, 74 Indention of paragraph--. 208 Indicative mood, 50, 358 in if and though clauses, 53, 54 Indirect object, 12, 70, 358 Indirect questions, 145, 358 INDEX 385 Indirect quotation, 141, 234, 358 Indirect style in letters, 293 Individuality needed in business letters, 269-271 Individual, application to, in letters, 325 Infinitive: clause, 71, 358 objective subject of, 71 phrase, 358 split or cleft, 60, 364 to as sign of, 41 used as noun, adjective, adverb, 358 wit IK >ut to, 72
denned, 20
of adjectives, 77
of adverbs, 78
of nouns, 22-28
of pronouns, 62 ff.
of verbs, 31 ff.

Information, letters asking, 306
Ingenious and ingenuous, 178, 196,

man and inhumane, 241
le one word, 166
leof, 94

He of three words, 166
in letters, 289
Instead one word, 166
Instructions, writing definite, 217 fT.
Intensive pronouns, 74, 359
Interjertions, 10, 20, 359
Interrogative adjective, 359
Interrogative adverb, 359
Interrogative pronoun, 65, 359
Interruption of thought, 119

i'l in, 91
Intrtn-'itivr verbs \

iurtion, usually needless, 234

InvTt/-d order.
ifm usually not a syllable, 163

Irony, indicated by exclamation

mark, 145

Irregular comparison, 78
Irregular verbs, 35, 36, 363
Irrelevant (not irrevelant), 179, 182
Italics, uses of, 142, 413
It is me, 67
Itself one word, 74

Japanese no change for plural, 23

Kernel and colonel, 177

Kind and kindly trite in letters,


Kind o' and sort o', 85
Kind of a, etc., 85
Kinds of sentences, 13
Knew and new, 178
Know, 36
Know and no, 178

Laboratory (not labratory), 179, 182
Larynx (not larnyx), 179, 182
Later and latter, 178
Latter, the, 75
Lay, 36, 38, 45

layed a wrong spelling, 45
Lead and led, 178
"Lead," the, in newspaper writing,

253 ff.

Learn, misused for teach, 240
Leave wrong after just as, had as,

etc., 248

Lengthways bad, 248
Less and fewer, 85
Lessen and lesson, 178
Lest, subjunctive in clauses with, ">:>
Let, uses as auxiliar>, 55, 352

with infinitive, 72

advantages in business, 263

Ixnly of the, 280

folding the,

form of the, 271-285



language of the, 287-295

qualities of good business, 266-272

the "mean," 316

the writer of a, 264-266
Letter acknowledging orders, 312

type letter, 313
Letter, adjustment, 315

exercises on, 317

type letter, 315
Letter of application, 297

content of, 298

exercises on, 302

stationery of, 298

type letter, 299
Letter, buying, 309

exercises on, 311

form of, 310

type letter, 311
Letter, the circular, 329
l.>tt<>r, collection, 332-335
Lett. -, the follow-up, 329-332
Letter, the form, 328
Letter of introduction, 305

type letter, 305
Letter of recommendation, 303

direct, 304

exercises on, 305

open letter, 303

type letter, 304
Letter, sales, 318-326

application to individual, 324

closing the deal, 325

description in, 320-323

divisions of, 318

exercises in, 321, 323, 327

getting attention in, 318

transition from first sentence, 320

type letter, 326
Letters asking information, 306

refusal of request, 308

request for favor, 307

routine, 306

Letters transmitting money, 313
type letter, 314

Library (not libary), 179, 182

Lie, 36, 38, 45

Lightened (not lightninged), 179

Like not a conjunction, 100, 248

Likewise adverb, 97

Limiting adjective, 359

Lincoln letters, two, 296, 297

Linking verb, 359

Loathe, misuse of, 243

Look, when followed by adjective,


Looky and lookit, 248
Loose participles, 107
Loose and lose, 38, 178
Lose, 36, 38
Love, misuse of, 243
ly, adverbs not ending in

Mad, misuse of, 242

Magazine article, condensing the,

261, 262
Magazines, 251
Mar-in in letters, 274-'_ ) 7i
Marten and martin, 178
Masculine gender, 359
Ma\j, uses as auxiliary, 55, 56, 352
May and can, 240
"Mean" letter, the, 316
Meat, meet, and mt '. 17s
Meningitis (notmengiii*}, 17'.t
Midnight one word, 166
Might as auxiliary verb, 352
Militarism (not militaryixin "\. 17'.'
Military orders, shall and will in, 47
Miner and minor, 178
Mischievous (not mischiei'io us), 1 71 ),

Misplaced words, phrases, clauses,


Misspelled words, lists of, 174-17!)

clauses as, 12

confusion in number due to, 57

definition, 11



should be near words modified,


Money, letters transmitting, 313
Money orders, 314, 368
Mood in verbs, 50, 359
More, as indefinite pronoun, 63

use in comparison, 78

adverb, not subordinating con-
junction, 97
one word, 166

semicolon needed before, 131
M<>*t, as indefinite pronoun, 63
use in comparison, 78
and almost, 85, 88
Much, singular as indefinite pro-
noun, 63

Muchly no such word, 249
', used as auxiliary, 55, 352

Name, addressee's to be written as

he writes it, 279
Namely, semicolon before, 132
Narrative, double, 229, 230
Natural order, 360

,;>erlatives, 80, 360
'/, singular as indefinite pro-
noun, 03, 74
>>y two words. Hi i
tive assertions, emphatic verb
forms in, 34

double. S!

'r, to be followed by no?
."ilar as indefinite pronoun, 63

one word, 166

semicolon needed I*!..'. l :;i
when set mmM, 1-1

riew, 178

in writing

Newspaper, importance of Hi
Ne^ IT.

News "story," the, 256-259
Niagara (not Niagrd), 179
Nice, misuse of, 242
Nickname one word, 166
No and know, 178
No one- two words, 166
No, agreement of verb with sub-
jects modified by, 59

punctuation with, 128
Nominative (not nomitive), 179, 182,


Nominative uses of pronoun, 66, 67
Non-restrictive expressions, 122,


Nor, agreement of verb with sub-
jects connected by, 59

should follow neither, 98
Not all, error in separation of, 104
Notwithstanding one word, 166

abstract, 22, 351

case of, 27-29

collective, 57, 58, 353

compound, 24, 28, 165 ff.

gender of, 22, 357

inflection of, 22

ing forms as, 22

number of, 23-26

person in, 22

predicate, 12, 66, 362
Nowadays one word, 166
.Vowheres, etc., 249

agreement of verb and subject
in, 57-59

errors in

of nouns, 23-26

of pronoun--, '

of verbs. Ml, 35

Numbers, spelling out. 10S-170
Numerals, 360

0, capitali/.r \\hcn a word, 159
:oll,\\rd by comma,



6, the sound of, 184

becomes subject in change to
passive, 40

clause as, 12, 14

direct, 11, 69, 71, 360

errors in, 66, 69

indirect, 11, 70, 358

retained, 40, 363

secondary, 363
Objective complement, 351
Objective uses of pronoun, 69-72
Obligation, should to express, 49

subjunctive in clauses to ex-
press, 53

Oblige overworked in letters, 289
Obscure reference, 109
Observance and observation, 241
Occasionally (not occasionly), 179,

Of redundant in off of, etc., 94

wrong in place of have, 36, 61
Offof,\n. '-M7
Offhanded bad, 248
oh t not capitalized, 159

punctuation after, 128
Omission of necessary words, 106,


Once, 249

One, combinations of, as antece-
dents, 64

excessive use of, 232

singular as indefinite pronoun,


One another, 74
On to two words, 166
Onto and upon, 91
00, the sound of, 183
Or, agreement of verb with sub-
jects connected by, 59
Ordering letter, a correct, 311
Orders, letters acknowledging, 312
Organization, the need, of, 208
Ornery bad, 248

Other, in comparison, 79

had improper with, 61

should equivalent to, 49
Our Mr., in letters, 290
Outline, making an, 212
Outstretch one word, 166
Overly no such word, 249

Panoramic, distinguished from pan-
tomimic, 241
Pants bad form, 248
Paragraph, the:
in business correspondence, 208,

209, 267

in conversation, 214, 234
in news items, 156
in ordinary composition, 210, 214,

Parallel construction in similar

parts of a sentence, 98, 202, 2M1
Parentheses, 139, 140
Parenthetical expressions, dashes

for, 136
Participial constructions, at ends of

letters, 281

Participial phrase, 360
. "dangling", 107
definition, 360

distinguished from gerund, 68
ing as sign of present, 41
past, as one of principal parts,

restrictive and non-restrictive,


use in passive, 39, 40
use in progressive, 33, 39
Particularly (not particurly), 179,

Partner (not pardner), 179, 188,


Parts of speech, 19, 361
Party wrong for person, 248



Passive voice :

change from active to, 39, 40, 108,
230, 365

how distinguished from progres-
sive forms, 39

often indirect and awkward, 40,

sign of, 41
Past participle:

one of principal parts, 35, 361

use in passive voice, 39
Past perfect tense, 32, 361
Past tense, 31, 33, 361

one of principal parts, 35
Pay, 36, 38
Peace and piece, 178
Pendant and pendent, 178
Perambulate (not preambulate), 179
Per cent two words, 166
Percolator (not perculator'), 179
Perfect tenses, 31, 32, 361

signs of, 41, 42

Perhaps, not always set off by com-
mas, 121

after abbreviation, 277
tid of sentence, 113, 144

inside quotation mark at end of
quotation, 143

special uses, 144
Perpetrate and perpetuate, 241

agreement of verb with subject
in, 59

change of, 232

error in, 62

in nouns, 22

in pronouns, 62

in 35

Person, a singular, 63
Person addressed in a letter, 278-280
Personal pronoun*. O'J fT., 109, 232,

Personally (not personly), 17"

Personified qualities, etc., capital-
ized, 160

Perspiration (not prespiration), 179

defined, 12, 361

in a series, 117

misplaced, 104

unattached, 108

verb phrases, 55

with prepositions, 90
Phrasing, illogical, 233
Pillar and pillow, 178
Place not a proper adverbial end-
ing, 87
Plan, making a, for composition,

211-214, 217, 218
Plurals, how formed, 23-26

possessive (genitive), 27, 28
Poetry, capitalize first word of every

line of, 159

Point of view, change in, 107, 108
Points of compass, not capitalized,


Pompous style, 243
Positive degree, 77, 78, 80, 353
Possessive adjectives, 66, 68, 361
Possessive forms:

as subjects, objects, etc., 68

of nouns, 27, 28

of pronouns, 66

undesirable for inanimate ob-
jects, 28

uses of, 28, 29, 68

with gerunds, 68, 69
Possessive pronoun, 66, 361

apostrophe wrong in, 68
Postage stamps in payment, 31.'!
Postal orders, 314, 368

'/, misused for informed, 241
Precede and proceed, 178
agreement with subject, 57 -60


definition, 10, 361



elements of, 10, 11
necessity of, 10
wrongly omitted, 16
Predicate adjective, 12, 77, 81, 361
Predicate noun or pronoun, 12, 66,
71, 362

clause as, 12, 14

confusion in number due to, 57
Predicate verb, 11, 362
Prefixes, list of, 150
Preposition, the:

at end of sentence, 70

definition, 90

distinguished from conjunction,

idiomatic uses of, 92-94

not inflected, 20, 90

redundant uses of, 94, 95

with pronoun, 70
Present participle, 33, 39, 41, 362
Present perfect tense, 31, 32, 33, 362
Present tense, 31, 33, 362

as one of principal parts, 35
Preventive (not preventative), 248
Principal and principle, 178, 196
Principal clauses, subjunctive in, 52
Principal parts of verb, 35
Principal words of subject and

predicate, 11

Probably (not probly), 182
Prof. impolite abbreviation, 248
Progressive tense forms, 33, 362

distinguished from passive, 39

signs of, 41

Promises, shall and will in, 47

case of, 66

confusing use of, 232

definition, 362

demonstrative, 73, 356

disagreement with antecedent in
number, 232

gender of, 65

indefinite, 63, 357

inflection of, 62, 63, 66

intensive, 74, 359

interrogative, 63, 65, 359

nominative uses of, 66, 67

number of, 63-65

objective uses of, 69-72

obscure reference by, 109

person of, 62, 63

personal, 62 ff., 109, 232, 361

possessive uses of, 68

predicate, 12, 66, 362

reflexive, 74, 363

relative, 62, 63, 65, 71, 363
Pronunciation (not pronounciation),


Pronunciation practice, 185-189
Proper adjectives, capitalized, 160,

Proper nouns, capitalized, 160, 362

in s, possessive of, 28
Prophecy and prophesy, 178
Propose and purpose, 178, 196
Propriety, subjunctive in clauses

expressing, 53
Prox. in letters, 241, 289
Punctuality in business letter

writing, 271
Punctuate, why, 113
Punctuation, 113-148, 277
Purity of vowel sound, 183

conjunctions denoting, 96

subjunctive in clauses of, 53
Purpose and propose, 241

Quarter, in compounds, 167
Question mark, 145

emphatic verb forms in, 33, 34
on chapters of this book, 21, 30,
61, 75, 88, 102, 111, 148, 157,
179, 190, 207, 216, 239, 251,
272, 286, 295, 337
shall and will in, 47



Quiet and quite, 178, 196

Quire and choir, 177

Quotation marks, 141-143, 214
other marks in connection with,
143, 144

Quotations, 141-143

direct and indirect, 141, 234
how punctuated, 128, 141-144
when first word is capitalized, 159

Rabbet and rabbit, 178

Railroad one word, 166

Raise, 46

Rarely ever wrong, 85

Reading as aid to vocabulary, 250

"Ready Letter Writer," the, 269, 270

Real and reel, 178

Real for very, 86, 88

Reason, conjunctions denoting, 96

Receipt and recipe, 178

Recent dale, in letters, 290

.inition of verb forms, 41
Recognize (not reconize), 179
Recommendation, letter of, 303-305
Redundant adverbs, 95

prepositions, 94
Reference, obscure, 109
Reflexive pronouns, 74, 363
,lar verbs, 35, 363

ve adverbs, 96, 363
t ive pronoun :
definition, 363

ler of, 65

never in apposition with antece-
dent. 71
relation to antecedent, 62, 63

h uncertain antecedent, 110
Repetition (not repitition), 17'.
of thought. 244
of words, 229
Representative (not represents

Resolved, capitali/e fir-t \vnr-l :iftrr,


Respectfully in conclusion of a letter,


Restrictive expressions, 122, 363
Result, conjunctions denoting, 96
Retained object, 40, 363
Rewrite one word, 166
Ride, 36

Ridiculous (not rediculous), 179
Right, rite, and write, 178
Ring, 36
Rise, 46

Road, rode, and rowed, 178
Roman numerals, no periods after,


Root syllables, 151-153
Roundabout expression, 245
Run, 36
tense forms of, 31-33

Sacrilegious (not sacreligious), 179
Said, legal use bad in letters, 290
Sales letter, the, 318-328
Salutation of a letter, 280
Same, the, as used in letters, 281, 290
Say "I says" error, 59
Schoolboy one word, 166
Schoolmaster one word, 166
School teacher two words, 166
Sealing and ceiling, 177
Seasons, names of, not capitalized,


Secondary object, 363
Secondhanded bad, 248
See, 36

the "I seen" error, 37, 38
Seem, when followed by adjective,

Seldom ever wrong, 85, 246

as prefix, followed by hyphen, 167
combinations ending in one

word, 166
pronouns in, 74

.. the need of, 198



Semicolon one word, 166
Semicolons :

between word groups broken by
commas, 132

first word after, not capitalized,

in classification, 139

in compound sentences, 118, 130

uses of, 130-132
Senses, verbs of the, followed by

adjectives, 82
Sentence :

complex, 13, 354

complex-compound, 14, 354

compound, 14, 117, 354

failure to make a, 227

first word capitalized, 159, 228

"grafted," 227

necessity of, 10

requirements for a, 10

simple, 13, 364
Sentence errors, 10, 14-16, 97, 202,

Sentence structure:

errors in, 14-16, 227-235

in letters, 281

Separate (not seperate), 182
Series, commas for words in a, 115
Set, 37, 43, 44

Set forms in letters, 265, 267, 269
Shall and mil, 41, 46-50, 352
Sheep, singular and plural alike, 23
Shine, 37

Should and would, 48-50, 56, 352
Show (v.), 37, 38
Show (n.), misuse of, 242
Sign of infinitive, 41
Signature, the, 282
Signs, verb, 40
Simple sentence, 13, 364
Simple style in writing, 202
Since either preposition or con-
junction, 99
Sincerely yours, 282

Sing, 37
Singulars in s, 26

possessive forms of, 28
Sit, 37, 43, 44
Slang, 143, 247, 248
Sleight and slight, 178
Smell, when followed by adjective,


adverb, 97

semicolon before, 131
So as, 100
Some and somewhat, 86
Somebody else's, 74
Some day two words, 166
Some one as indefinite pronoun, 63
Sometime and some lime, 166
Sometimes one word, 166
Somewhat one word, 166
Sort o', 85
Sound, when followed by adjective,


Sow, 37, 38
Speak, 37
Specialty (not speciality), 179,


Species no change for plural, 23
Speech, faults in American, 181

parts of, 19

common errors in, 174-179
numbers, 168-170
some rules of, 170-172
Splendid, misuse of, 242
Split infinitive, 60, 364
Spring, 37

Stamps in payment, 313
Stand, when followed by adjective,


State overworked for say, 290
Statements, shall and will in, 47
Stationary and stationery, 178
Steal, 37, 38

no such form as stold, 248



Stenographer, the, and the em-
ployer, 274

Still as conjunction, 131
"Story," the news, 256-259
Strike, 39, 40, 42

Studies, names of, when not cap-
italized, 160

Studying (not studing), 179

agreement of verb with, 57-60

clause as, 12, 14

compound, 13, 58

definition, 10, 364

extra ("John he" error), 235

in nominative case, 66

in objective case, 71

necessity of, 10

substantive, 11, 364

wrongly omitted, 16
Subjects for composition, 200, 201,
205-207, 215, 216, 218-226,
255-261, 285, 286
Subjunctive mood:

advantages of, 56

definition, 364

forms of, 50-52

uses of, 52-55

verb phrases in place of, 55, 56
Subordinate clause:

definition, 13, 364

shall and will in, 48

should and would in, 49

subjunctive in, 53, 54

uses of, 14

wrongly made a sentence, 16
Subordinating conjunctions, 96,

ned, 364

subject, 11

titute naming, 110
;s indefinite pronoun, 63

'iia set off by

Suffixes, list of, 151
Suggestion (not sujjestion), 179
Summarizing statement, set off by

dash, 137

Superfluous (not superfulous), 179
Superfluous details, 230, 245
Superfluous words, 246
Superlative degree, 78, 353
Superlatives, natural, 80
Surname one word, 166
Surprised (not suprised), 179, 182
Suspicion not a verb, 248
Swim, 37, 38
Swine, 23
Swing, 37, 38

Syllables, division into, 162-164
Symmetry, lack of, in sentence

structure, 202, 230, 231

Take, 37

confused with bring, 241
Taste, when followed by adjective,


Teach and learn, 240
Technical words, 143, 351 ff.
Telegram, the, 335

special code, 336
Telephone courtesy, 199
Temperament (not temperment), 179

definition, 31, 364

emphatic, 33, 41, 356

future, 31, 33, 41, 46-48, 357

illogical changes in, 233, 234

past, 31, 33, 35, 361

past perfect, 32, 361

perfect, 31, 32, 41

present, 31, 33, 35, 362

progressive, 33, 41, 3tiJ

simple, 31

Terribly, misuse of, 242
Than not a preposition, 93

MJUIirtlnn, 100

Tli:iiiks, proper for favor, 308




improper repetition of, 246

subjunctive in clauses with, 53

use of, 63, 65, 73
The, omission of, 106
Their and there, 178
Theirselves wrong, 74
Theme writing:

faults in planning for, 212

general directions for, 201, 202

subjects for, 200, 201, 205, 207,

215, 216, 218-226, 255-261
Then adverb, 97

semicolon needed before, 131
There and their, 86, 88, 178, 196
Therefor and therefore, 178

adverb, 97

semicolon needed before, 131

when set off by commas, 121
These kind, etc., 74
Thing, combinations ending in, 63,


This here, etc. bad, 74
This that, these those, 73
Though, subjunctive in clauses with,


Thought, repetition of, 244
Through as adjective, 86
Throw, 37, 38

no such forms as throwed or trun,


Ticklish (not tickelish), 189
Till either preposition or con-
junction, 99

Time, conjunctions denoting, 96
Title of person addressed to be

used in letters, 278, 279
Titles, capitals in, 161

quotation marks for, 142

and used in place of, 99

as sign of infinitive, 41

confused with at, 90

confused with by, 91
Too adverb, not conjunction, 97
To, too, and two, 87, 88, 179, 196
Today, etc. hyphen unnecessary,


Together no hyphen, 166
To hand, 287
Topic sentence, 210, 211
Tortuous, misused for torturing, 241
Transitive verbs, 43, 364
Trite phrases, 243, 244

in letters, 281, 287-291
Trout, singular and plural alike, 23
Truly, not capitalized in conclusion

of letter, 282

Trusting, etc., in letters, 289
Two, indicated by comparison, 79
Types of errors in school themes,


Typewriting style in letters, 281
Typewritten signatures, 283

M, the sound of, 183

UU. in letters, 289

Uncertainty, subjunctive in clauses
of, 53, 54

Unbeknown bad, 248

Under separate cover, 290

"Understood" words, 105

Unkempt, misuse of, 242

Unless, use of, 99

Until either preposition or con-
junction, 99

Up as different parts of speech, 19
redundant uses of, 95

Upon and onto, 91

Use for used, 220

Valued in letters, 291

Variety in expression, need of, 287

Veracious, distinguished from vor-
acious, 242

Verb phrases instead ot subjunc-
tive, 55, 56




active and passive, 39, 40, 365

agreement with subject, 57-60

conjugation, 31, 355

forms, recognition of, 41, 42

inflection of, 31 ff.

mood in, 50

number in, 34, 35

person in, 34, 35

principal parts of, 35

regular and irregular, 35, 363

signs, 40, 41

transitive and intransitive, 43,

364, 365

Very, distinguished from real, 86
viz., semicolon betore, 132
Vocabulary increasing the, 149 ff.,


Voice of verbs, 39, 40

shall and will to express, 47

subjunctive to express, 52, 53
Vowel sound, purity of, 183

Wa'n't not a proper form, 61
Want "ad," replies to, 297
Wardrobe no hyphen, 166
Ware, wear, and where, 179, 184
Ways improper form, 26

>>e writer, and / in letters, 291,


Weak and week, 179

Whether, while, etc. (not wether,

wile, etc.), 179, 189
Which, use of, 63, 65
Who, use of, 63, 65

forms of, 66
Witt, 41, 46-48
Wish, subjunctive to express, 52.


Wish to inform, 291

no hyphen, 166

not now a conjunction, 99
Women's names in signatures, 283
Word families, 149
Word groups, 113
Wordiness, 229, 230, 244-246

as tools, 240

commonly misspelled, 174-179

compound, 165-167

division of, 162-164

failure to complete, 228, 229

in a series, 115

interesting, 249, 250

misplaced, 104

mispronounced, 182-189

misused, 240, 241

of address, 121

repetition of, 229

straining of meanings of, 242

superfluous, 246

"understood," 105

use of too many, 229, 244-246
World, in compounds followed by

hyphen, 167
Would, 48, 49

Would say bad in letters, 281, 291
Write, 37

distinguished from right and rite,


Writer, used to avoid /, 291, 295
Writer of a li-tt.-r. the, 264-266
Written composition, general in-
structions for, 201, 202


Kes, punctuation with, 128 You-all, you^-uns bad, 248

You bad use for one, 232 Yours (alone bad in letters), 291

understood as subject, 10 Fours truly, etc., 281, 282

i 30




g 5





University of Toronto








Acme Library Card Pocket

Index File"

source :
Category : Economy

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