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whenever it precedes the Vowels E or I; as Medicine, for Me decine.
Or V Consonant; as Cou’nant for Covenant.
To these may be added the Gerunds of all Verbs whose Infinitives end in any of the Liquids, preceded by a Vowel or Diph. thong, and that are accented on the laft fave one : For the Gerunds being form'd by adding the Syllable ING to the Infinitive, the Liquid that was their final
Lecter comes thereby to be between Two Vowels; and the Accent that was on the last fave One of the Infinitive, comes to be on the last save Two of the Gerund: And therefore the Vowel or Diphthong that precedes the Liquid, may be cut off, by means whereof the Gerund of Three Syllables comes to be but of Two, as from Travel, Travelling, or Trav’ling ; from Endeavour, Endeavouring, or Endeau'ring, &c.
But if the Accent be on the last Syllable of such a Verb, its Gerund will not suffer such an Elision : Thus the Gerund of Devour must always be Three Syllables, Devouring, not Dev'ring; because all Derivatives still retain the Accent of their Primi. tives, that is, on the fame Syllable : And the Accent always obliges the Syllable on which it is to remain entire.
The Gerunds of the Verbs in OW, accented on the last fave Two, suffer an Elision of the that precedes the W; as Fol'wing, Wall'wing.
The Particle It admits of an Elision of its Vowel before 1s, Was, Were, Will, Would ; as 'Tis, 'Twas, 'Twere, 'Twill, 'Twould, for It is, It was, &c.
It likewife sometimes suffers the like Elision when plac'd after a Word chat ends in a Vowel; as By't for By it, Do's for Do it : Or that ends in a Consonant after which the Letrer T can be pronunc'd; as Was't for Was is, In't for In it, and the like : But this is not so frequenc in heroick Verse.
The Particle is may lose its 1 after any Word that ends in a Vowel, or in any of the Consonants after which the Letter S may be founded; as she's for she is : The Air's for the Air is; &c,
To (Sign of the Infinitive Mood) may lose its o before any Verb that begins by a Vowel; as T'amaze, T'undo, &c.
T. (Sign of the Dative Case) may likewise lose its O before any Noun that begins with a Vowel; as t' Air, t'every, &c. But this Elision is not so allowable as the former.
Are may lose its A after the Pronouns Personal, We, You They; as We're, You're, They're: And thus it is that this Elision ought to be made, and not as some do, by cutting off the final Vowels of the Pronouns Personal, w'are, r'are, Th'are.
Will and would may lose all their first Letters, and retain only their final one, after any of the Pronouns Personal; as l'u for I will, He'd for He would; or after Who, as who'll for who will, who'd for who would.
Have, may lose its Two firft Letters after I, you, We, They ; as I've, Tou've, We've, They've.
Not, its Two first Letters after can ; as Can't for Can not.
Taken, its K, as Ta'en : For so it ought to be written, not ta’né.
Heaven, Seven, Even, Eleven, and the Participles Driven, Given, Thriven, and their Compounds, may lose their last Vowel ; as Heav'n, Forgiv'n, &c. See the foregoing Section, p. 13.
To these may be added Bow'r, Pow'r, Flow'r, Tow'r, Show'r, for Bower, Power, &c.
Never, Ever, Over, may lose their v; and are contracted thus, Néer, Eer, o'er.
Some Words admit of an Elision of their first Syllable ; as 'Tween, 'Twixt, 'Mong, 'Mongst, 'Gainst, 'Bove, 'Cause, 'Fore, for Bea tween, Betwixt, Among, Amongst, Against, Above, Because; Before. And some others that may be observ'd in reading our Poets.
I have already, in the 3d Section of this Chapter, spoken of the Elision of the e of the Particle The before Vowels : But it is requisite likewise to take notice, that it sometimes loses its Vowel before a Word that begins by a Consonant, and then its Two remaining Letters are joyn’d to the preceding Word ; as To th'Wal, for to the Wall; Bytb'Wall, for By the Wall, &c. But this is scarce allowable in heroick Poetry.
The Particles in, of, and on, sometimes lose their Consonants, and are joyn'd to the Particle The in like manner; as ith',oth, for in the, of the.
In some of our Poets we find the Pronoun Hus lose its two firft Letters after any Word that ends in a Vowel ; as to's, by's, &c. for to bu, by bis, &c. Or after many Words that end in a Consonant, after which the Letter S can be pronounc'd ; as la's, for's, for in his, for his, &c. This is frequent in Cowley, who often takes too great a Liberty in his Contractions; as t'your for to your, i'which for to which, and many others; in which we muft be cautious of following his Example: But the contra&ing of the Pronoun His in the manner I mencion'd, is not wholly to be condemnd.
We sometimés find the Word Who contrà&ted before Words ebat begin by a Vowel ; as,
Wh'expose to Scorn and Hate both them and it. Cowl
Dryd. Well did be know howo Palms b'oppreffion speed. Cowl. i
And the Pronouns Personal, H., She, They, We; as,
Timely b’obeys her wise Advice, and strait
But there and the like Contractions are very rare in our mast
corre&t Poets, and ought indeed wholly to be avoided : For i 'tis a general Rule, that no Vowel can be cut off before ano
ther, when it cannot be funk in the Pronunciation of it: And 1 therefore we ought to take care never to place a Word that
begins by a Vowel, after a Word that ends in one (mute E 1 only excepted) unless the final Vowel of the former can be
loft in its Pronounciation: For, to leave two Vowels opening on each other, causes a very disagreeable Hiatus. Whenever therefore a Vowel ends a Word, the next ought to begin with a Consonant, or what is equivalent to it; as our W, and H Aspirate, plainly are.
For which reason 'cis a Fault in fome of our Poets co cuc eff che e of the Particle The, for Example, before a Word chat begins by an H Aspirate ; as,
And th'bafty Troops march'd loud and chearful down. Cowl.
But if the H Aspirate be follow'd by another E, that of the Particle The may be cut off; as, Tb'Heroick Prince's Courage or bis Love.
Wall. Th Helperlan Fruit, and made the Dragon peep: Wall.
CH A P.
CH A P. II.
Wbat Rhyme - is, and the several sorts of it. R
minations of two Words ; I say, of Sound, not of Letters, for the Office of Rhyme being to content and please the ; Ear, and not the Eye, the Sound only is to be regarded, not the Writing: Thus Maid and Perswade, Lauzh and Quaff, tho' they differ in Wriring, rhyme very well: Buc Plough and Cough, tho' written alike, rhyme not at all.
In our Versification we may observe three several sorts of Rhyme ; Single, Double, and Treble. The single Rhyme is of two forts : One, of the Words that
1 are accented on the last Syllable : Another, of those that have their Accent on the last save two.
The Words accented on the last Syllable , if they end in a Consonant, or mute E, oblige the Rhyme to begin at the Vow. el that precedes their last Confonant, and to continue to the End of the Word : In a Consonant; as,
Here might be seen that Beauty, Wealth, and Wit,
Dryd. In mute E; as,
A Spark of Virtue by the deepest Shade
Wall. But if a Diphthong precede the last Consonant, the Rhyme must begin at that Vowel of it whose Sound most prevails ; as,
Next to the Pow'r of making Tempests cease,
Wall. If the Words accented on the last Syllable end in any of the Vowels except mute E, or in a Diphthong, the Rhyme is
made only to that Vowel or Dipthong. To the Vowel, as,
So wing'd with Praise ne penetrate the sky,
Teach Clouds and Stars to praise him as we fly. Wall,
So hungry Wolves, tho' greedy of their Prey,
. The other fort of fingle Rhyme is of the Words that have their Accent on the last Syllable fave two. And these rhyme to the other in the fame Manner as the Former ; that is to say, if they end in any of the Vowels except mute E, the Rhyme is made only to that Vowel; as;
So seems to speak the youthful Deity;
Wall. But if they end in a Consonant or mute E, the Rhyme muft begin at the Vowel that precedes chat Consonant, and continue to the End of the Word. As has been shewn by the former Examples.
But we must take Notice, that all the words that are accents ed on the last save two, will rhyme not only to one another, but also to all the Words whose Terminations have the same Sound, tho' they are accented on the last Syllable. Thus Tenderness rhymes not only to Poetess, Wretchedness, and the like, that are accented on the last fave two, but also to Confess, Excess, Gr. that are accented on the last; as,
Thou art my Fai ber now, these Words confess
LL Words that are acéented on the last save one, require 1. the Rhyme to begin at the Vowel of that Syllable, and
to co tinue to the End of the Word; and this is what we call Double Rhyme ; as,
Then all for Women, Painting, Rhyming, Drinking;
Besides Ten thousand Freaks that dy'd in Thinking. Dryd. 11 But it is convenient to take Notice, that the ancient Poers
did not always observe this Rule, and took Care only thać the last Syllables of the Words should be alike in Sound, with out any Regard to the Seat of the Accent. Thus Nation and effection, Tenderness and Hapless, Villany and Gentry, Follow and