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THE BEST AND EASIEST RULES FOR ATTAINING
TO WHICH ARE ADDED,
AN INTRODUCTION TO ITALIAN VERSIFICATION;
THE WHOLE PROPERLY ACCENTED, TO FACILITATE THE
BY SIGNOR VENERONI,
ITALIAN SECRETARY TO THE FRENCH KING.
A NEW EDITION,
CAREFULLY REVISED, CORRECTED, AND IMPROVED,
J. COLLINGWOOD; LONGMAN & CO.; T. BOOSEY & SONS;
harriet C. Jameson
P R E F AСЕ.
WHEN we reflect on the number of great men whom Italy has produced since the glorious age of Leo X; as well as on the pleasure and instruction to be obtained by visiting that beautiful country; and consequently the necessity of understanding the Italian language, to make such visit profitable; and farther, when it is considered, that the authors of Italy constitute a fund of every kind of elegant and polite literature; it is not surprising that the Grammars, &c., written to promote the knowledge of this language, have so greatly multiplied: for without a proper acquaintance with its idiom, all the treasures of Italian learning and literature; all the discoveries and inventions of genius and industry in that nation, would be lost to the rest of mankind.
For these reasons, the editor originally undertook to present to the English student, and in an English dress, VENERONI'S ITALIAN GRAMMAR; a work then, as now, justly considered as far surpassing all other introductions to that elegant language; but with such corrections, improvements, and additions as were necessary to render it conformable to the English idiom: these improvements consisted of an Introduction to Syntax; an Essay on Italian Poetry, or Versification; the different Compositions in Verse, and Poetical Licences; a Treatise on compound Words, Capitals, and Punctuation; and finally, a Discourse on Expletives, the energy and beauty of which constitute a great part of the merit of most languages.
But, non omnia possumus omnes. Such is the very high reputation of VENERONI'S GRAMMAR on the Continent, and so great the number of those who wish to be able not only to understand, but to speak the Italian language, with cor
rectness and purity, that very material additions and observations upon that work have been published since our first edition of it. This consideration has induced us to combine in every succeeding edition the fruits of our own inquiries and studies, with those of learned foreigners. We have likewise added some new Grammatical observations on the Italian language; with Remarks on the Letters of the Alphabet; new Dialogues, Phrases, &c. &c.; and the Italian words are also properly accented, to facilitate the pronunciation to learners. After all, we must not take upon us to say that it is impossible any better edition of this Work should ever appear; but this we may safely affirm, that it will be long before VENERONI'S GRAMMAR of the Italian language can be carried to a higher degree of perfection than that in which we now give it, with our strongest recommendation, to the English student.
ADVERTISEMENT TO THIS NEW EDITION.
The greatest attention with regard to correctness has been bestowed upon this, new edition of VENERONI's very highly esteemed ITALIAN GRAMMAR; and the Editor believes it will be found in every respect much superior to any which have preceded it. The chapters relative to PRONUNCIATION have been particularly improved, and this important branch of the Italian language most copiously elucidated. All the treatises on the Italian Grammar have been corrected and improved, without changing the order fixed by MR. VENERONI. The Selections in Prose have been greatly improved. A sketch of the Origin of the Italian language and Poetry has been added, and with it, many elegant Extracts from the most celebrated Italian Poets.
The EDITOR also begs leave to observe, that hehas just finished the revision of a new edition of MR. BOTTARELLI'S ITALIAN EXERCISES, referring to the Rules of this Grammar; together with its KEY; also of his ITALIAN, FRENCH, and ENGLISH DICTIONARY, in three volumes; which works he confidently trusts will be found exceedingly correct, and very materially improved.
THE most expeditious, and certainly the only sure way to understand, write, and speak, the Italian and indeed all other languages, is, to acquire the knowledge of them on the principles of Grammar. In order, therefore, to facilitate this acquirement, more especially as it respects Ladies, and those persons unacquainted with the Latin, I shall first, in this INTRODUCTION, explain the necessary TERMS and DEFINITIONS of Grammar in general:-this being thoroughly studied and understood, I shall then proceed to explain, in the best manner I am able, the Rules of the ITALIAN GRAMMAR in particular.
An Explanation of the TERMS of Grammar.
THE first terms of Grammar are the Letters. There are twenty-two letters in the Italian tongue, viz, a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j, l, m, n, o, p, q, r, s, t, u, v, Z. The Italians do not make use of k, w, x, y.
The letters are divided into vowels and consonants. The vowels are, a, e, i, o, u, They are called vowels, from their forming a perfect sound without the assistance of any other letter, as a is pronounced single: e, the same; and in like manner the other vowels.
The consonants are the remaining letters, b, c, d, f, g, j, l, m, n, p, q, r, s, t, v, z. We give them the name