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weaker form i. The same word appears in Greek, several centuries later, as péps (ferei), having lost the t and changed every other letter except r to a weaker form. It already belongs to a different language. Similar changes carried out through all words make distinct languages by the influence of decay alone. In Latin the above word appears as fert. Here two vowels have been lost and one weakened, whilst the whole word is reduced from three syllables to one. It took several centuries of gradual decay to produce these changes.

The class of languages to which the English more immediately belongs, starting originally from the same point, have pursued a different method, but have been subject to analogous influences. In Gothic the form is bairith, in which the last vowel is lost and the other two weakened to i. The a in the first syllable was afterwards introduced by a law which we need not now stay to investigate. The change in the consonants may likewise for the present be passed over. In Old English beareth is nearly in the same state as the Gothic, the e being nearly equal in strength with the i. In Modern English it has suffered further decay until it is reduced to one syllable, as in Latin. The words bears and fert look very different from each other now, but they were originally the same, and they have come to differ by the influence of laws like those which affect the physical world at large. If the entire language may be compared to a forest, each word, in some sense, resembles a tree which, after having attained its full growth and natural development, becomes subject to gradual decay and various vicissitudes, so that its original vigour and symmetry are marred; one branch rots and drops away, another is twisted into unnatural shapes by the prevailing winds, whilst a third retains all its original strength and beauty.

The author strikingly illustrates this process in its effect upon the word twenty. He compares the Indo-European expression for that number with the Chinese. Both languages originally adopted the same method of representing the number twenty. They added the number ten to the number two. But the Chinese words remain unchanged, whilst those in the IndoEuropean languages are continually changing, that is, are subject to Phonetic Decay. The Chinese words continue to mean two and ten, or rather, two by ten. In fact, they do not become one word at all. On the other hand the Indo-European word no longer conveys the ideas two and ten any more than it does four and five. It has become one word, and conveys a simple idea as much as the word two or one. This difference constitutes the essential distinction of the two systems of languages.

In Chinese cúl means 'two,' and shi ten;' cúl shi means 'twenty.' In Sanskrit dva means 'two,' and dazan, from which is formed dazati, means 'ten.' But in the word vinzati, twenty,' both words are already greatly reduced, dva to vi, and dazati to nzati. They appear at a later period in Greek as ei-kati, the z in Sanskrit having been at first k. In Latin the word is vi-ginta; both d's are lost, as in Greek, but n is inserted afterwards. In twenty, the word is reduced to two syllables, in place of the original four.

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But while the decay of grammatical forms is thus going on, dialects are acquiring distinctness and vigour. Now and then one is elevated to the dignity of a written and even of a classical language. The relative value of national and provincial languages, of written and unwritten dialects, has been much misunderstood. The real and natural life of language is in its dialects; and in spite of the tyranny exercised by the classical or literary idioms, the day is still very far off which 'is to see the dialects, even of such classical languages as Italian 'and French, entirely eradicated. About twenty of the Italian 'dialects have been reduced to writing, and made known by the 'press. Champollion-Figeac reckons the most distinguished 'dialects of France at fourteen.' Modern Greek is said to have seventy dialects. Of the Friesian, spoken in a small area on the north-west of Germany, between the Scheldt and Jutland, and which is very closely allied to the Anglo-Saxon, Kohl

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'The commonest things, which are named almost alike all over Europe, receive quite different names in the different Friesian islands: thus, in Amrum father is called datj; on the Halligs, baba or babe; in Sylt, foder or vaar; in many districts on the mainland, täte; in the east part of Föhr, oti or ohitj. Although these people live within a couple of German miles from each other, their words for father differ more than the Italian padre and the English father.'

Pliny mentions that there were three hundred tribes in Colchis speaking different languages. Nor are such facts confined to a few favoured localities. A similarly luxuriant crop of dialects is continually springing up in all parts of the world. 'Gabriel Sagard, who was sent as a missionary to the Hurons, in 1626, states that among these North American tribes hardly 'one village speaks the same language as another; nay, that 'two families in the same tribe do not speak exactly the same 'language.' The same abundant growth of dialects appears the east of Asia.

'In the neighbourhood of Manipura alone Captain Gordon collected no less than twelve dialects, some of them spoken by no

Lingual Phariseeism.


more than thirty or forty families, yet so different from the rest as to be unintelligible to the nearest neighbour. Brown, the excellent American missionary, who has spent his whole life in preaching the gospel in that part of the world, tells us that some tribes who left their native villages to settle in another valley, became unintelligible to their forefathers in two or three generations.'

Robert Moffat relates that the isolated villages of the desert often change their entire language in the course of one generation.

We have seen how subservient grammatical forms are to the very life and energy of certain languages. But whence come grammars? They are not coeval with speech. They are of comparatively late introduction. They are not required by a merely spoken language; and it was long even after the invention of writing before grammars were compiled. They were brought into existence by the desire to learn 'dead languages.' They were torches to light up the tomb, and to facilitate the search after buried treasures.

In primitive times men did not care to learn languages. Their own was all they valued. Every other speech was an object of contempt. It is interesting to observe how every people disdain to honour any speech but their own with the name of language. Uneducated persons still regard the language of foreigners as absurd or ridiculous. At one time the feeling was universal, and it has stamped itself upon national names. The Slavonians (Russians, Poles, Bohemians, and others) have ever called their western neighbours, the Germans, Niemci, mutes.' Probably they were first acquainted with peculiarly untalkative specimens of the race, like Wouter van Twijfler, one of the Dutch settlers of New Amsterdam, described by Washington Irving. 'He was a man shut up within himself like an oyster, and of such 'a profoundly reflective turn that he scarcely ever spoke except 'in monosyllables.' The difference in vivacity of speech between Slavonians and Germans is still something like that between French and English; and our neighbours across the Channel would not be likely to honour our language with any very flattering epithet. The Teutons again have ever called their southern and western neighbours, the Celts in Italy and Wales, the Welsh, for their speech appeared but a wailing' sound. The Hindoos apply the same word in a slightly different form to their neighbours, calling them Mlechhas. The Greeks called all who did not speak Greek Barbarians, that is, 'babblers.'

It is not surprising that the Greeks should disdain to learn foreign languages, which were an object of such contempt. They were afflicted with a sort of lingual phariseeism which

made them 'despise others.' Their contempt for foreign literature is an inestimable loss to the world. When Alexander the Great extended his victorious march beyond the Indus, India possessed a literature not unworthy of comparison with that of Greece; and if its stores had been then laid open to the western world, instead of being unknown for two thousand years longer, it could not but have been serviceable to the progress of civilization. There was no Greek in the train of Alexander who could interpret to his king the statements of the Brahmins. Several interpreters had to be employed; as if, at our present Exhibition, a Russian were compelled first to explain himself to a German, and he to transmit the communication to a Frenchman, and he at last to make it known to an Englishman, instead of the Russian himself speaking English, or finding an Englishman able to understand him. The Brahmins acutely remarked that their answers must reach the king 'like water which had 'first passed through many impure channels.' The difference in the result is strikingly illustrated by comparing the confused account of the Zend language supplied by Anquetil du Perron, through the medium of translations, with the clear and satisfactory discoveries made from personal knowledge of it by the late lamented Emile Burnouf.

But whilst this lingual phariseeism of nations is shown in 'despising others,' it is equally evident in proportionate selfesteem. There was an inner consciousness that intelligent speech is one of the loftiest characteristics of man, and that consciousness found utterance in the names assumed by each people for themselves. The Slavonians, who called their German néighbours 'mutes,' called themselves 'speakers'-Slavi or Sloveni, from slovo, which means an articulate word, intelligible speech. The Teutons called themselves Deutsch, which is evidently connected with the verb deuten, 'to speak clearly,'' to make clear by words.' Celt or Galli probably had a similiar origin; for in the Slavonian languages a word apparently from the same root is still employed to denote speak,' as in Russian goloviti means to speak.' Mommsen (Romische Geschichte,' i. 11) says, 'We find in the 'Roman language a primitive word of enigmatical origin-graius 'or graicus-which denotes every one (of the Hellenic race), just 'as among the Greeks we find the analogous designation, 'Omóc, 'applied to all the Latin and Samnite tribes known in earlier times 'to the Greeks.' The Bohemian language has rek-ati, 'to speak,' in use, and 'Οπικός has an evident connection with ὄπ-ς, ' voice,' and π-ovσt, 'they say. These instances, however, seem to militate against the principle on which the others are explained, because they are not names given by each people to themselves.

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Origin of Grammar.


But this is one of those instances in which the exception confirms the rule. The Greeks and Itali are really one race, and the names thus mutually applied refer to a time when their languages were sufficiently similar to be understood by one another-before the one entered Italy or the other reached the Peloponese.

These names furnish a striking proof of the high value which different tribes attached in early ages to their own speech, and of the contempt which they felt for the 'babbling' of others. The Hellenic race displayed these feelings most of all. To them Greek and Barbarian, clear speaker and babbler, comprised the whole world; and yet it was by the Greeks that grammatical studies and the just appreciation of foreign languages were first promoted in Europe. Another nation had grown powerful by its military successes and become reflective by its political constitution and contests. It was in a condition to appreciate the works of genius, but had no literature of its own. Rome was the mistress of the world; but it was from conquered Greece that her poets had to learn to compose, her orators to speak, her lawyers to define, her historians to narrate. But to acquire a foreign language, especially a dead one-and the language of Homer and of Plato was no longer spoken-required the help of grammar. Dionysius Thrax and his followers supplied the need whilst teaching Greek to the youth of Rome. Again, at the revival of learning, after the dark ages, it was by Greek teachers in Italy, under the patronage of the Medici, that the chief impulse was given. It is therefore to the labour of Greek teachers in disclosing the literary treasures of their own country that we owe the existence of grammars.

A similar cause operated in India at an earlier period. The Buddhist agitations caused the Sanskrit to become a church language and cease to be the common organ of social intercourse. The Hindoos, therefore, had to study their ancient literature, both religious and poetical, as if it were in a foreign tongue. Grammars consequently became necessary, and were supplied with growing completeness as knowledge increased, beginning with the prátizakhyas, which contained only simple rules of pronunciation, and culminating in the astounding' grammar of Pânini, the most perfect thing of its kind.

Thus grammars arose, which are the main feature of the first or Empirical stage of the science. But, for the fulfilment of its higher vocation, this science needed the influence of a loftier principle, and we cannot forego the pleasure of quoting the terms in which Professor Max Müller points out its operation.

""Barbarian" was struck out of the dictionary by Christianity. To the Hindoo every man not twice-born was a Mlechha; to the

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