New handbook for writers by Sumner Ives (1960) Free PDF book

Download New handbook for writers by Sumner Ives (1960) Free PDF book

 New handbook for writers by Sumner Ives

Excerpt from the author's introduction:

This book is an attempt to supply information about language in general, about English in particular, and about the special conventions of edited written English which will help anyone to write more effectively and to obey the appropriate conventions. It is based on the following beliefs.

1. In order to teach current usage and to explore the grammatical resources of the language, one needs a terminology for the types of words, functions, and structural elements in the language, and he needs a description of the customary structural patterns according to which sentences are made with these elements. This terminology should be based on a classification resulting from an inductive examination of current English, and the definitions should be finite; that is, the defining characteristics should be matters of form and arrangement which native speakers of the language can recognize without hesitation. The classification which produced traditional grammar does not satisfy this condition; nevertheless, in so far as possible, familiar terms should be used, provided these terms can be defined according to the current facts of English form and function.

2. Proficiency in a composition is not gained by a knowledge of grammar alone, not even by accurate knowledge. Hence, students should practice the individual operations of writing, from the manipulation of structures within a sentence to the organization of the whole composition.

3. Since most freshmen do not have a habitual command of the usages currently found in edited written English, a handbook should present these usages, recognizing such differences as those between formal and informal style, and acknowledging that some diversity in usage exists in the writing of professionals. For ex- ample, a conversational piece by James Thurber may contain usages which, although appropriate there and in other writing of the same type, would not be appropriate in a book review or a research paper. In other words, a handbook should evaluate us- ages, but its evaluations should be based on current practices in edited writing rather than on the dicta of older handbooks. In this respect, then, it should be consistent with the policies of the best current dictionaries.

4. Since a language is essentially a symbolic system developed as a medium of communication, however, it may be used at any one time, the relations between form and meaning, the dependence of meaning on a form, should be pointed out in detail. Also, the limitations of language in communication and the chief auxiliary kinds of meaning should be discussed.

5. Since good expository writing depends finally on good thinking, some of the common principles of clear thinking and logical proof should be explored, as well as some of the ways in which thinking only appears to be logical. 6. Since good grammatical usage is only a prerequisite to good writing, a handbook should give and illustrate the more important principles of rhetoric, such matters as organization, coherence, paragraph development, and sentence effectiveness.

Contents of the book

Getting Started 3

Part I • Introduction to Grammar

chapter 1 • Form and Meaning 14

1. About Language 2. The Parts of a Language System: (a) phonology (b) grammar

chapter 2 • Grammatical Classes 34

1. Word Classes: (a) form-class words (b) form-class
functions (c) function words 2. Construction Classes

chapter 3 • Sentence Patterns 49

1. Hierarchies 2. Formulas: (a) form-classes and form- class functions (b) sentence roles (c) function words (d) construction types (e) included hierarchies 3. Statement Patterns: (a) normal word order (b) inverted word order. 4. Question Patterns 5. Analyzing sentences: (a) analysis for perception (b) analysis for composition

Practice with Patterns 62

Part II • Grammar at Work

i. Nouns: (a) count nouns (b) collective nouns (c)mass nouns (d) abstract nouns (e) number of nouns (f)case of nouns 2. Personal Pronouns: (a) reference of pronouns (b) agreement of pronouns (c)case of pronouns 3. Demonstratives 4. Indefinites 5. Relatives 6. Interrogatives 7. Verbs 8. Clauses

chapter 5 • Verbs 86

1. Types of Verbs: (a) defined as constituents of phrases (b) defined by meaning 2. Single-word Finite
Verb Forms: (a) present forms (b)past forms 3. Finite Verb Phrases: (a) finite phrases made with forms


of being and have (b) finite patterns made with forms of doing (c) finite phrases made with modals (d) phrases made with forms of phrase-making verbs 4. Subjunctive Mode 5. Agreement of Verbs 6. Nonfinite Verb Forms: (a) participle forms (b) infinitive forms 7. S quence of Tense: (a) sequence of tense with finite forms (b) sequence of nonfinite forms.


1. Adjectives: (a) proper adjectives (b) common ad- jectives (c) order of adjectives (d) adjectives as com- plements 2. Occasional Adjectivals: (a) nouns as ad- jectivals (b)pronouns as adjectivals (c) demonstratives as adjectivals (d) indefinites as adjectivals (e) relatives as adjectivals (f) adverbs as adjectivals (g) adjectival verbs (h) clauses as adjectivals (i) prepositional phrases as adjectivals 3. Multiple Modification


1. Positions of Adverbs 2. Adverbial Constructions

chapter 8 • Function Words 137

1. Conjunctions 2. Prepositions 3. Pattern Words

Practice in Revising Grammar 143

Part III • Punctuation

chapter 9 • Separation of Sentences 169
1. With Coordinating Conjunctions 2. Without Coordinating Conjunctions 3. Incomplete Sentences 4. Questions 5. Exclamation Marks

chapter 10 • Internal Punctuation 175

1. Elements Preceding Subject: (a) nonfinite verb ex- pressions (b) finite verb expressions (c) prepositional phrases (d) adverbial modifiers (e) transitional ele- ments (f) interjections 2. Internal Elements: (a) inser- tions (b) modifiers ( c ) appositives (d) coordinate con- structions (e)with dates, addresses, and addenda to proper names (f) inserted commas (g) structural shift


3. Final Elements: (a) responses (b) final participials
(c) amendments (d) lists

Practice in Punctuation 192

Part IV • Mechanics of Writing

chapter 11 • Spelling and Related Problems 211
1. Spelling Problems Inherent in the System 2. Some General Spelling Practices: (a) double consonants (b) final e (c) final y (d) words with ie or ei (e) final ic (f) prefixes (g) aides to memory 3. Writing Problems Related to Spelling: (a) plural nouns and singular verbs (b) compounding (c) dividing words (d) numbers and fractions (e) capitalization (f) possessive forms (g) contractions (h) abbreviations (i) titles (j)foreign words and phrases (k) cited words and other items (1) words with special meanings (m) quotations ( n ) conversation

chapter 12 • Concerning Words 230

1. Dictionaries 2. Using a Desk Dictionary: (a) defini- tion (b) pronunciation (c) grammar (d) etymology (e) spelling (f) status 3. Usage 4. Four Types of Stand- ard English: (a) edited written English (b) conversa- tional English (c) formal and informal English (d) regional (e) technical (f) slang (g) argot (h) ar- chaic

Chapter 13 • The Library and the Library Paper 242

1. Using the Library: (a) encyclopedias (b) bibliographies and abstracts (c) biographical data (d) facts, figures, and places 2. The Library Paper: (a) taking notes (b) arranging the notes (c)the outline (d)the first draft (e) revising the paper (f) documentation

Practice with a Dictionary 266

Part V • Style

Chapter 14 • Types of Style 277

1. Informal Style 2. Neutral Style 3. Formal Style


Chapter 15 • Building an Effective Style 291

1. The Whole Composition: (a) unity (b) coherence (c) euphony (d) structural balance 2. Sentence Pat- terns: (a) accretion (b) suspension (c) periodic sen- tence (d)the series (e) coordination 3. Paragraphs: (a) methods of paragraph development (b) paragraph organization 4. Caveats: (a) choice of subject (b) point of view (c) variation (d) exaggeration (e) cir- cumlocution (f) negative approach (g) excessive de- tail (h) passive voice (i) abstract nouns (j) verbs end- ing with -ing (k)dead wood (1) space fillers Practice in Style 320

Part VI • Making Better Sense

Chapter 16 • Language and Meaning 330

1. Grammar and Meaning 2. Vocabulary and Mean-
ing: (a) denotation and connotation (b) climates of
opinion (c) frame of reference (d) semantic arguments (e) semantic networks (f) exactness in vocabulary 3. Special Kinds of Meaning: (a) judgment mean-
ing (b)ostensive meaning (c) figurative meaning
(d) shibboleth meaning

Chapter 17 • Writing and Thinking 350
1. Sources of Information and Opinion 2. Types of Statements: (a) reports (b) judgments (c) inferences 3. Everyday Logic: (a) assumptions (b) hypotheses (c) inductive generalizations (d) deductive conclusions (e) limitations of logic (f) fallacies (g) substitutes for logic

Practice in Thinking 367

The index follows page 372

 Sumner Ives
Date: 1960

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