We give the decisions Of usage upon a dozen or more vital grammatical and verbal questions yet in debate. For this Office we have been qualifying ourselves by years Of reading Specially directed to this end. It need astonish no one that in almost every instance we found ourselves in open con?ict with many critics who, during the past few years, have so oracularly taught us how not to say that which we have to say. In the more comprehensive work soon to appear - a work into which this, in fuller form, will enter - the verdict of usage on scores and scores Of other mooted points will be reported. We have but opened the subject in this volume.
The place in the curriculum of study for which this work is designed is near that held by rhetoric - immediately before or after it, we think certainly before that Of English liter ature.
With one exception we need not here name the authors consulted in the preparation of the work. This exception is Professor Lounsbury. We have for years used his English Language as a text-book. Our debt to him of which we are conscious is not small but smaller, doubtless, than that Of which we are unconscious. Especially was his book helpful in assigning the dates of changes spoken of in chapters IV. - VII.
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