Imágenes de páginas


as nouns,

fort de l'épée; Les (remèdes) purgatifs; LESSONS IN FRENCH.

Une (ligne) perpendiculaire.

The adjective is, then, only taken as a

noun when it expresses an idea which The adjective is a word which is joined may, positively and actually, be applied to to a noun to qualify or modify it.

things of different species; as in the folThus the use of the adjective in speech, lowing:—What is true persuades, Le vrai always supposes the presence of a substan- persuade; What is honest must be preferred tive.

to what is agreeable and useful, L'honnête When I say, A wise man, un homme sage, doit être préféré à l'agréable et à l'utile. homme is a substantive, which, without the The first proposition is true when speakword sage, applies to any individual of the ing of a narrative, a system, an argument, male race of man; but as soon as this word a gesture, a sadness, a desire, &r., but it sage is added to it, the idea represented by does not designate any of these ideas in parthe two words, homme sage, does not desig- ticular, and represents what is spoken of nate any man, but one among them who has only as a thing, the nature of which is the quality of being wise; thus wise quali: truth. fies and modifies the substantive man, and The same construction may be applied in accordingly is an adjective.

the second sentence when the subject spoken We have already stated that nouns are of is what is honest, agreeable, and useful. sometimes used as adjectives, and adjectives Variation of the Adjectives.—The nature

But it is proper to notice here, of adjectives being, as we have already that this last transformation never takes stated, to express the quality of nouns, by place when we speak of living beings; for identifying themselves with them, they being always, in this case, of the same gen- must both have the same characteristics, der as the noun they represent, they always and always be of the same number and suppose the apposition of this noun to them; gender. so that when employed, the sentence has Besides, the adjective may qualify the the character of an ellipsis; thus, when we noun to which it is joined in a manner more say, for the Almighty I'Eternel, Le-Tout or less extended ; tắis is what is called, by puissant, the noun God is understood, and, grammarians, degrees of signification in the God being masculine, the adjective can only adjectives. be used in that gender. The wise (man), We have, then, three distinct parts to Le sage; The select (men), Les élus; consider in adjectives; the gender, the Learned 'men, Les savants; A prude (wo- number, the degrees of signification. man), Une prude.

In these examples, the word man, homme, is understood in the first, hommes in the second and third, femme in the last.

Formation of the Feminine in Adjectives Sometimes, it is true, these adjectives in ending with e mute.-All adjectives have for similar cases are accompanied by another their termination in the masculine either an adjective, which seems to modify them as it e mute, another vowel, or a consonant. would a noun; but if we analyze those ex- All adjectives in the feminine are ended pressions we shall discover that these quali- with an e mute. ficative adjectives act only as an adverb Thus, those which end with an e mute in should, and, in fact, take the place of one: the masculine, do not change their terminaA true wise (man), Un vrai sage, means a tion in the feminine; such are the followman truly wise, un homme, vraiment sage. ing :-Ridiculous, Ridicule ; A ridiculous A false devotee, Une fausse dévote, means, man, Un homme ridicule; A ridiculous a woman falsely religious, une femme faus- woman, Une femme ridicule. Exceptions:sement dévote.

Traitor, traitre, traitresse ; Devilish, diable, Even when the adjective does not refer to diablesse; Master, maître, maîtresse, a living being, if it designates an attribute, Of Adjectives ending with a Vowel which belonging to a class of things which may be is not a mute e.--Adjectives, which in the expressed by a noun, it should he always masculine end with any other vowel than considered as an adjective; thus, The acids an e mute, make their feminine by the addiof the stomach, Les acides de l'estomac; tion of an e mute to the masculine termiThe thick part of the blade, Le fort de nation. Enchanté, enchantée, Enchanted; l'épée; The purgatives, Les purgatifs; A poli, polie, polished; bleu, bleue, blue. perpendicular, Une perpendiculaire, signify, There is but one exception to this rule, Les (sucs) acides de l'estomac; Le (endroit) I which is, Favourite, favouri, favourite.


Of Adjectives ending in an, ien, on.- feminine by changing cur into euse ; as, Adjectives ending in the masculine in an, Dancer, danseur, danseuse. ien, on, besides the addition of an e mute, Those ending in teur, unless they are dedouble their last consonant in the feminine; rived from a present participle, as in the as, Christian, Chrétien, Chrétienne. preceding examples, change eur into trice;

The Academy, in stating this rule, marks as, Accuser, accusateur, accusatrice. as exceptions : English, Anglican, Angli- Exception. — The following adjectives, cane; Benign, bénin, makes bénigne; Cun- although derived from present participles; ning, malin, makes maligne.

make their plural in trice; as, Debtor, Of Adjectives ending with a Consonant débiteur, débitrice ; Executor, exécuteur, which is neither mor n.--Adjectives ending exécutrice. in the masculine with any other consonant Those ending in érieur make their femithan m or n, make their feminine by the nine by adding an e mute to this terminaaddition of an e mute to their last conso- tion, ås, Exterior, extérieur, extérieure. nant; as, Great, grand, grande.

There are a great number of nouns with But this rule has an immense number of this termination that must not be mistaken exceptions. We will explain them one after for adjectives, and make their feminine another.

terminations in different manners; they are Of Adjectives ending in c and d.-Adjec- easily distinguished from adjectives by plactives ending with the letter c make their ing the word man, or woman. before them, feminine in two ways; some add he to the and seeing if, thus accompanied, they are masculine; as Frank, frank, franche. used in the language. A good dictionary is

Others make their feminine by changing the best rule for such cases. cinto que; as, Public, public, publique. There are also some adjectives terminating

The adjective Greek, grec, makes its femi- in cur, which have no feminine terminanine by keeping the c and adding que; tion, and are used for either gender; such grecque ; Raw, crud, makes crue.

as, Lover of arts, amateur, amateur; Author, of Adjectives ending in f. -- Adjectives auteur, auteur; Conqueror, vainqueur, &c., ending with f in the masculine, make their vainqueur, &c. feminine by changing f into ve; as, Brief, Of Adjectives ending in x.-Adjectives bref, brève.

ending in x, change this letter into se, in Of Adjectives ending in g;--- Adjectives the feminine; as, Courageous, courageux, ending in g, make their plural by adding ue courageuse. to the masculine; as, Long, long, longue. Exceptions : Reddish, roux, rousse ;

Of Adjectives ending in el, eil, ol, ul, as, False, faux, fausse ; Sweet, doux, douce ; os, ot, and et.-Adjectives ending in el, eil, Prefixed, préfix, préfixe. as, ol, ul, os, ot, et, make their feminine by Of Adjectives having two terminations in doubling the last consonant, and adding an the Masculine, according as they are placed & mute.

before a Vowel or a Consonant.-Five adOf Adjectives ending in eur, teur, erieur. jectives are entirely defective in their femi- Adjectives ending in eur have several vine termination, and, besides, change their modes of termination for the feminine. masculine according to the letter which beThose in cur derived from a present parti- gins the next word, whether it is a consociple by changing ant into eur, make their nant or a vowel; as, Foolish,

before a consonant or h aspirated
vowel or h mute,

} folte,


consonant or h aspirated, vieux,
vowel or h mute,



consonant or h aspirated beau,
vowel or h mute,



consonant or h aspirated
vowel or h mute



consonant or h aspirated
vowel or h mute,


mol, Of Adjectives which are used only in the Masculine or in the Feminine.-Some adjectives have no feminine; as Active, dispos; Numbers are divided into five classes; Foppish, fat; Pale, paillet, &c.

as, 1st. Cardinal; 2nd. Ordinal; 3rd. Col. Some have no masculine: as, Mellow, lective; 4th. Distributive; 5th. Proporblette, &c.



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Cardinal Numbers,

Ordinal Numbers.

Collective Nouns of Number. 1 un, m. une f. premier

1st unité

2 deux

deux-ième, second 2nd couple, paire couple
3 trois

3rd trio
4 quatre

4th deux-couples two couples
5 cing

6 six

6th demi-douzane half-a-dozen
7 sept

8 huit

8th huitane

eight 9 neuf neu-viè me 9th neuvaine nine days of

prayer 10 dix

10th dixaine

half-a-score 11 onze


12 douze

12th douzaine

dozen 13 treize


13th 14 quatorze


15 quinz

15th quinzaine fortnight, fif. 16 seize


17 dix-sept


17th 18 dix-huit


18th 19 dix-neuf

dix-neu vième

20 vingt

20th vingtaine a score
21 vingt-et-un

22 vingt-deux

30 trente

30th trentaine

a score and a 31 trente-et-un, &c. trent-et-unième


40 quarante

40th quarantaine

two scores
41 quarante-et-un, &c. quarante-et-unième 41st
50 cinquante


50th cinquantaine two scores and 51 cinquante-et-un, &c. cinquante-et-unième 51st

a half
52 cinquante-deux cinquante-deuxième 52nd
60 soixante


60th soixantaine three scores 61 soixante-et-un, &c. soixante-et-unième 61st 70 soixante-dix

soixante-dixième 70th 71 soixante-et-onze soixante-et-opzième 71st 72 soixante-douze, &c. soixant-douziéme 72nd 80 quatre-vingts

quatre-vingtième 80th quatre-vingtaine four scores
81 quatre-vingt-un quatre-vingt-unième 81st
90 quatre-vingt-dix quatre-vingt-dixième 90th
91 quatre-vingt-onze, &c. quatre-vingt-ouzième 91st
100 cent

100th centaine

five scores 101 cent-un, &c.

cent-unième, &c. 101st
200 deux-cents
deux-centième, &c. 200th deux centaines

ten scores 1,000 mille


1,000th un millier one thouaand 2,000 deux-mille, &c. deux-millième 2,000th deux-milliers two thousand 10,000 dix-mille

dix-millième 10,000th une myriade a myriad 1,000,000 un million


millionth un million a million 1,000,000,000 un billion

billionth un bilion

a billion

The formation of the ordinal adjective ther; to say, The second day of the month, from the cardinal is so simple, that it re- Le second du mois, is not correct. quires no further explanation.

Of the Numerical Adjective onze (eleven). Of, Numerical Adjectives used in speaking --Although the number onze (eleven) beof the Days of the Month. When, in gins with a vowel, the article singular, le, French, we speak of the days of the month, la, does not make an elision before it, and instead of using the ordinal number, as is les is pronounced as if the word onze began done in English, we employ the cardinal; with an h aspirated; as, The eleventh of as the eighth of April, Le huit Avril, or March, Le onze de Mars ; The eleven apples d'Avril; The twenty-sixth of the next were good, Les (h) onze pommes étaient month, Le vingt-six du mois prochain. bonnes.

But, however, when we speak of the first of the formation of Compound Numbers, day of the month, we keep the ordinal -- In the formation of some of the compound number as in the English ; as, The first of numbers, the word one is placed between January, Le premier Janvier--Le premier the first and the last part; as in, Twenty, de Janvier,

one, vingt-et-un; Thirty-one, trente-etThis exception does not extend any fur-un; Forty-one, quarante-et-un; Fifty-one,

cinquante-et-un; Sixty-one, soixante-et- rality, should be followed by a singular un; Seventy-one, soixante-et-onze. noun: thus, two, deux; ten, dix; twenty,

This rule does not extend to any other vingt, &c., are always in the plural; as, number, and it would be wrong to say, vingt- Two men, deux hommes; Ten years, dix et-deux, trente-et-quatre, &c. This mode ans; Twenty days, vingt jours, &c. of counting in English, one and twenty, six Of the Adjectives vingt and cent.--The and thirty, &c., is not used in French. adjective quatre-vingts takes the plural ter

Of the Numerical Adjective one, un, with mination in the word twenty, provided it is the words hundred and thousand. -One, or not followed by another number; as, Eighty a, placed before the words hundred and thou- men, quatre-vingts hommes; Eighty-two sand, in English, are suppressed in French; men, quatre-vingt-deux hommes. thus, one hundred, one thousand, are ex- The adjective hundred takes the plural in pressed by cent, mille.

the same cases; as, Two hundred days, deux Of Numerical Adjectives used in Poetry, cents jours; Two hundred and one days, Music, Games, 8c:-There are, besides, the deux-cent-un jours, &c. But these two numerical adjectives already mentioned adjectives do not take the plural when they above, many others used in poetry, music, are used instead of the ordinal adjectives, games, &c.; as Distich, distique, ; Tiercet, centième and millième; as, Charlemagne tercet; Quatrain, &c., quatrain; Solo, solo; died in the year 800, Charlemagne mourut Duet, duo ; Music in three parts, trio; en l'an huit cent; This great calamity hapQuartet, &c., quatuor, &c.; Two number pened in the year 580, Ce grand malheur ones (playing with dice),, beset; Two num- arriva en l'an cinq cent quatre-vingt. ber sixes, (playing with dice), sonnet, &c. Of the Numerical Adjectives mille and

Un millier is very often employed for one mil, one thousand.—The adjective thousand, thousand weight. Quintal is only used in mille, never takes the plural; as, Ten thouthe sense of one hundred weight.

sand men, dix mille hommes; One thousand Of Distributive and Proportional Num- | men, mille hommes. bers.—The Distributive Numbers are those The word thousand employed in dates is expressing the different parts of a whole; written mil, and means only ten hundred ; as, The half, la moitié; The third, le tiers ;) as, In 1830, en mil huit cent trent. The fourth, le quart; The fifth, le cin- Although this example is correct, it is quiéme, &c.

more elegant to say for, In eighteen hunThe Proportional Numbers denote the dred and thirty, en dix-huit cent trente. progressive increase of things; as, The The word mille, used as a noun, and double, le couple; The treble, le triple ; A meaning a mile, follows the rule of nouns, hundred fold, le centuple, &c.

and takes the plural; as, A hundred miles, cent milles.

Remark.-It is to be remarked that in Adjectives agreeing in number, as well as French the conjunction and, et, is never in gender, with the nouns which they qua- used in the formaiion of adjectives of numlify, it becomes necessary now to examine ber. We do not say, for two hundred and what alterations they suffer in their termi- fifty, deux cent et cinquante, but deux cent tion when joined to a noun in the plural. cinquante ; the reason for this rule is, that

General Rule.- Adjectives, whatever may a numerical adjective, whatever may be the be their termination, form their plural by number of words of which it is composed, the addition of an á to the feminine and is but one qualificative, which does not admit masculine; as, Good, Bon, bons, (mascu- therefore that and, et, which separates line); Bonne, bonnes, (feminine.)

thc adjective into parts, should convey the This rule has no exceptions for the femi- idea of several. nine termination; as to the other, there are The fact of et being used in the adjectives two cases in which this rule is not observed. vingt-et-un, trente-et-un, &c., is not a de

1st. Adjectives ending in s or x in the rogation to this rule, because in these cases singular, do not change in the plural: as, et is only used for the sake of euphony, and Big, gros, gros; Hideous, hideux, hideux. is dropped as soon as it ceases being neces

2nd. Adjectives ending in au and al make sary to please the ear; thus we say, Quatretheir plural by changing this termination vingt-un, cent-un, &c. into aux; as, Beautiful, beau, beau, beaux; Řemarks on the Formation of the Plural General, général, généraux.

in several Adjectives. The adjective, péniAll cardinal numbers indicate the plural, tentiel, makes its plural, pénitentiaux ; Peexcept one, un; for it would be absurd if á nitential psalms, Les psaumes pénitentiaux. word, which, in all cases, denotes a plu- 1 Universal, universel, makes its plural uni


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versels, when employed as an adjective, but Comparison of Equality. - The comparataken as a noun used in philosophical dis- tive of equality is formed by adding aussi

, cussions, it is written universaux. La these as, in affirmative sentences, and aussi or si des universaus a fait dans les siècles passés in negative ones, before the adjective, and un grand sujet de dispute parmi les écoles ; que, as, after it; as, Gold is not so precious the thesis on universals has been in past as diamond, L'or n'est pas aussi, or si, préages a great cause of dispute among the cieux que le diamant; I am as good as you, scholars.

Je suis aussi bon que vous. Adjectives ending in ant, ent, follow the Comparison of Superiority and Inferia general rule, keeping the t and adding an s ority. The comparative of superiority is in their plural : Caressing, caressant, ca- formed by placing plus, more, before the ressants ; Contented, content, contents. adjective, and que, than, after it; as, Gold

But when using the qualificatives in ant, is more precious than silver, L'or est plus we must ascertain if they are really qualifi- précieux que l'argent. catives or present participles, for in this last In English the comparative of superiority case they neither take the plural nor femi- is formed either by placing more before the nine: Ces deux femmes, craignant de le adjective, or by adding er to the termination chagriner, l'ont perdu dè sa jeunesse; these of the adjective: but these two modes of two women, fearing to cause him pain, have expression must be rendered in the same spoilt him from his youth.

manner in French; as, Peter is richer than The adjective, all, tout, is an exception to Paul, Pierre est plus riche que Paul. the preceding rule, because it drops the t in The comparative of inferiority is formed the plural : Au 'men are equal, Tous les by prefixing moins, less, to the adjective, hommes sont égauz.

and placing que after it; as, Silver is less The adjectives ending the singular mas- precious than gold, L'argent est moins préculine in al are divided, with regard to the cieux que l'or. formation of their plural, into three cate- When several adjectives qualify the same gories.

noun, each one must be preceded by one of Most of them change al into aux. the adverbs, aussi, plus, moins, according Some only add an s to the singular. the nature of the comparison, and the last

Some, by being never joined to a mascu- adjective followed by que; as, This woman line noun, have no plural in this gender, is as beautiful, as good, and as young as. and then follow the general rule of femi- yourself, Cette femme est aussi belle, aussi, nipe adjectives.

bonne, et aussi jeune que vous; This man 1st. Adjectives in al, making their plural is less beautiful, less good, and less young aux : Annual, annal, annaux; and many than yourself, Cet homme est moins beau, others. Adjectives in al, making their plu- moins bon, et moins jeune que vous; This ral by adding an $ : Fatal, fatal, fatals. young lady is more handsome, more ami

Adjectives in al, having no plural in the able, and younger than yourself, Cette demasculine : Beneficial, bénéficial, bénéfi

. moiselle est plus belle, plus amiable, et ciales; (Plural feminine.), Diagonal, dia- plus jeune que vous. gonal, diagonales; Boreal, boréal, boréales; "More" or "less" used as adverbs of Brumal, brumal, brumales, Crural, crural, Quantity. When more or less, plus or crurales; and several others.

moins, are used as adverbs of quantity, and Degrees of Signification of the Adjec- not of comparison, the conjunction than is tives.—There are three degrees of significa- expressed by de; as in, This book cost mo tion in the adjectives; the positive, the more than two dollars, Ce livre me coûte comparative, and the superlative.

plus de deux dollars; You cannot buy this The Positive is the adjective itself, ex- horse for less than two hundred dollars, pressing the quality of the noun without Vous ne pouvez pas acheter ce cheval pour any increase or diminution; as Merit is moins de deux cent dollars. Foreigners modest, Le mérite est modeste; Gold is pre- should pay attention to this rule. cious, L'or est précieux.

Of the Comparative AdjectivesBetter," The comparative is so called, because it “ Worse," and " Less." There are three expresses a comparison between two or adjectives which are comparative by them. several objects. If we compare persons or selves; Better, meilleur, instead of plus bon; things together, some are either equal, su- Worse, pire, instead of plus mauvais; Less, perior, or inferior, to the others; thus there moindre, instead of plus petit. are three sorts of comparatives that of Beginners in the study of the French equality, that of superiority, and that of language being apt to confound these cominferiority.

parative adjectives with the comparatire

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