ii — DISSERTATION. insular, and, withthe exception ofthe islands of New Zealand, monsoons, or trade winds, prevail through every part of it. To this, I have no doubt, is mainly to be attributed the wide dis- semination oflanguage now the sul)ject of inquiry, and which, among rude nations, were impossible on a continent without periodical winds. The generally adopted explanation of this wide dissemination oflanguage amounts to this, that the many existing tongues were originally one language, through time and dis- adopted taucc Split iuto many dialects, and that all the people speaking these supposed dialects are of one andthe same race. But as this hypothesis could not well be main- tained in the face of an existing negro population, the negroes andtheii- languages are specially excepted, on the eri'oneous supposition that no words ofthe common tongue exist in their languages. This hypothesis originated withthe German naturalist, Forster, who accompanied Captain Cooke in his second voyage, and it has been adopted by many distinguished philologists, but especially by INIr. Marsden and Baron William Humboldt. It was, in a modified form, my own opinion, in a less mature state of my acquaintance withthe subject ; but I am now satisfied that it is wholly groundless.* Some ofthe objections to this hypothesis, exclusive ofthe palpable one ofthe existence ofMalayan words in all the negro languages, are obvious. It supposes, for example, that ' Refutation . ° ° . ^ ^ .\ . ^ ' ofthelanguageand race are identical, taking it, oi course, for granted, that men are born with peculiar languages as they are with peculiar complexions; and that both are equally unchangeable. Many well known events of authentic * " We likewise find a very remarkable similarity between several words ofthe fair tribe of islanders in the South Sea, and some oftheMalays. But it would be highly inconclusive, from the similarity of a few words, to infer that these islanders were descended from theMalays " "I am, therefore, rather inclined to suppose that all these dialects preserve several words of a more ancient langiiage, which was more universal, and was gi'adually divided into many languages, now remark- ably different. The words, therefore, ofthelanguageofthe South Sea isles, which are similar to others in theMalay tongue, prove clearly, in my opinion, that the South Sea isles were originally peopled from the Indian, or Asiatic Northern isles and that those lying more to the westward received their first inhabitants from the neighbourhood of New Guinea." Ohsenatims.—Voyage round tlie World, by John Reynold Forster; London, 1778. ;
DISSERTATION. iii history refute this notion. Thus, the half-dozen languages spoken in ancient Italy were all, in time, absorbed by one ofthem. The languages spoken in Britain twenty centuries ago have been nearly supplanted by a German tongue. Several millions of negroes in the New World, whose parent tongues were African, have exchanged them for English, Spanish, French, and Portuguese. For thelanguages spoken in ancient France and Spain, a languageof Italian origin has been almost wholly substituted. Although languageoften affords valuable historical e^idence, it would only lead to error to consider it as invariably identical with race. It is quite certain, that within the proper Indian Archipelago, or islands extending from Sumatra to the western shores of New Guinea, and respecting which our information is most complete, no languages exist derived from a common stock, and standing to each other in the relation of sisterhood, as Italian, Spanish, and French, do to each other ; or as Gaelic does to Irish ; or Armorican to Welsh, or Scotch to English. The only dialects that exist are oftheMalayand Javanese languages, but they consist of little more than differences in pronunciation, or the more or less frequent use of a few words. In the Polynesian islands alone, real dialects of a common tongue do exist; but here, as will be afterwards shown, the number of Avords common to such dialects, and to thelanguages ofthe Archipelago, is so trifling, that it refutes at once the notion of a common origin. Another insuperable argument against thetheory of one original tongue is found in the nature of many ofthe words ofthe imagined derivative dialects. These abound in terms very widely diffused, indicating an advanced state of society ; as for example, an useful system of numeration, terms connected with agriculture, navigation, the useful arts, and even with letters. Tlie people that had such a language must necessarily have been in a tolerably advanced state of civilisation, in such a one for example as we find the principal nations of Sumatra, Java, and Celebes to be in, at the present day ; and many ofthe tribes which thetheory supposes to be derived from it, not only did not maintain the civilisation ofthe parent nation, but have even fallen into the condition of mere savages ; a result b 2
Allen and Greenough s New Latin Grammar (Dover Language Guides) J.H. Allen
Paperback. Pub Date :2006-02-10 Pages: 477 Language: English Publisher: Dover Publications A venerable resource for more than a century. Allen and Greenoughs New Latin Grammar is still regarded by students and teachers as the finest Latin reference grammar available. Concise. comprehensive. and well organized. it is unrivaled in depth and clarity. placing a wealth of advice on usage. vocabulary. diction. composition. and syntax within easy reach of Latin scholars at all levels.This sourcebooks three-part treatment starts with words and forms. covering parts of speech. declensions. and conjugations. The second part. syntax. explores cases. moods. and tenses. The concluding section offers information on archaic usages. Latin verse. and prose composition. among other subjects. Extensive appendixes feature a glossary of terms and indexes. Students of history. religion. and liter...
Language : English