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Our infinitive, where to precedes it, having been generally, of 
old, dativo-gerundial, it is pertinent, at the outset, to note, in con- 
nexion with phrases on the model of " able to thoroughly bake 
bread," such a phrase as " conducive to thoroughly baking bread." 
Bake, as here used actively, originated, by. detrition, from the 
gerund bacanne, which further contributed, along with a verbal 
substantive, towards the development, what between corruption 
and confusion, of the present participle baking. 

With reference to expressions typified by to thoroughly bake, 1 
three points, constituted by their age, the extent to which they 
have found favour, and the motives which have led writers to em- 
ploy them, are successively to be examined. 

First, however, it is in place to exhibit a specimen or two of the 
remarks which they have called forth from those whose attention 
they have attracted. 

Mr. Richard Taylor wrote, in 1840:' "Some writers of the 
present day have a disagreeable affectation of putting an adverb 
between to and the infinitive." On this there is little to observe, 
except that Mr. Taylor, as he obviously supposed himself to be 
censuring a modernism, must have read the English literature of 
past times either sparingly or carelessly ; and that, if he had re- 
flected awhile, perhaps he would have discovered, at least on the 
part of adepts in composition, some more respectable reason than 
" affectation " for their sanction of the verbal arrangement which 
he disrelished. 

From the late Dean Alford I next quote a paragraph, in which, 
as to circumspectness, information, and logic, his philological char- 
acteristics are displayed much at their average. It is as follows : 
" A correspondent states [sic] as his own usage, and defends, the 

1 " To adopt and scrupulously observe rules." " Nor to utter or even harbour 
resentment." It is not to be said that, in these clauses, " to " does double duty, 
and belongs to " scrupulously observe " and " even harbour." Rather, there 
is an ellipsis of to between the adverb and the verb. 

2 At p. xxx of his edition of Tooke's Diversions of Purley published that year. 


insertion of an adverb between the sign of the infinitive mood and 
the verb. He gives, as an instance, ' to scientifically illustrate? 
But, surely, this is a practice entirely unknown to English speakers 
and writers. It seems to me that we ever regard the to of the 
infinitive as inseparable from its verb. And, when we have already 
a choice between two forms of expression, ' scientifically to illus- 
trate ' and ' to illustrate scientifically,' there seems no good reason 
for flying in the face of common usage." 1 

In this judgment, Dean Alford distinctly lays claim to complete 
acquaintance with the scope and contents of a universal negative ; 
and it rarely happens that a pretension of this kind can confront, 
with safety, any but vulgar and uncritical receptiveness. The cer- 
titude of decanal instinct, however confidently professed, is not, 
forsooth, to the eye of science, so conclusive as a demonstration of 
Euclid. With tiresome frequency, Dean Alford has betrayed how 
insufficiently he was qualified, as a student of English, to arbitrate 
positively on a matter of usage. Nor, in the comments before us, 
does he simply evince his unfamiliarity with the byways of our 
vernacular phraseology. 2 The " practice " which he disapproves 
is, he says, "entirely unknown to English speakers and writers"; 
and, accordingly, his correspondent, unless to be counted as 
nobody, wrote in a foreign tongue. Besides this, we are given to 
understand that it is with " common usage " alone that the " en- 
tirely unknown " expression is at variance. Simultaneously, then, 
one and the same turn of speech is quite unprecedented and is 
merely of rare occurrence. Furthermore, that which approved 
itself to the Dean as an inflexible maxim, namely, that the infini- 
tival to is always to be succeeded immediately by its verb, must, in 
order to its validity, be warranted by an appeal to the absolute 
consensus of good usage ; but, since this consensus cannot be 
challenged on his behalf, the maxim falls to the ground. 

Probatory passages akin to those subjoined, but many genera- 
tions earlier than the earliest of them, are, very likely, producible. 

1 A Plea for the Queen's English (2d ed. 1864), p. 188. 

8 If Dean Alford had so much as been minutely conversant .with a writer 
whose "Works," so-called, he edited in 1839, he would have been aware that 
" to scientifically illustrate''' 1 is matched, in a single small volume by Dr. Donne, 
five times, at least, as I shall presently point out. 

The verb experience, of which, according to Dean Alford, "no instance . . . 
occurs till quite recently," is also seen at p. 165 of the same volume; and, as 
it was there in print in 1633, so it had then been in print for upwards of a 


Yet it is something to be able to show that the speciality of con- 
struction here investigated can be traced back as far as to Wyclif's 
coadjutors and first disciples, if not to Wyclif himself.' 

" For this was gret wrikyoinesse, to this manere trete there brother, that algatis 
mekeli dide so grete kyndness agen ; and it was an opyn untreuthe, to this 
manere hate her God." Select English Works of yohn Wyclif, edited by Mr. 
Thomas Arnold, M. A. (1869-1871), Vol. I, p. 175. 

" And it hadde betre be to hem to nevere have resceyvcd Cristendom, but gif 
thei enden trewely in Goddis comaundementis." Ibid., Vol. Ill, p. 196. - 

" So oure good God byndith us not to evermoi'e trowen" etc. English Works 
of Wyclif hitherto Unprinted, edited by Mr. F. D. Matthew (1SS0), p. 349. 

"Also the popis lawe biddith men to not here the massis of prestis that ben 
comyn lechours." Ibid., p. 418. 

" To not do veniaunce," " to not obey" " to not wel assent," " to not misheros," " to 
not assent." An Apology for Lollard Doctrines* (Camden Society, 1842), pp. 33, 
38 (two extracts), 43, 84. 

" Forsothe Y say to you to nat swere on al manere." " But Y say to you to 
not agein stonde yvel." St. Matthew, v, 34, 39, in the earlier Wyclifite trans- 
lation of the Bible, dating about 1389. 

In an anonymous romance, 4 apparently of the same age as some 
of the works just quoted, occurs " for to notfalle." 

Although, for perhaps the first half of the fifteenth century, I can 
bring forward nothing to my present purpose, others will, without 
question, intersperse the gap with numerous relevant citations. 

Bishop Pecock's Repressor, the probable date of which is about 
1456, is thickly strewn with expressions like forto first geve, for to 

1 Though not a single sentence of all that has been handed down as from 
the pen of Wyclif can unhesitatingly be averred to have reached us in his very 
words, yet many of the writings attributed to him and to his followers, and 
even the extant manuscripts of some of those writings, certainly belong to the 
fourteenth century. 

2 See also ibid., Vol. I, pp. 63, 76, 171, 202, 204 ; Vol. II, pp. 256, 303, 304, 
361 ; Vol. Ill, pp. 225, 264, 369, 409. In these places, freely, meekly, not, quemely 
(becomingly), thus, and truly are disjunctive. 

Here, and elsewhere in these notes, and also where only two or three words 
are quoted connectedly in them, the spelling is modernized. 

3 It is singular that neither of the two greatest authorities on Wyclifite liter- 
ature, the Rev. Dr. Walter W. Shirley and Mr. Thomas Arnold, takes the least 
notice of this work. The opinion of the Rev. Dr. J. H. Todd, its editor, 
touching its authorship, deserved, at least, passing mention. For reasons why 
I am disposed to think that it is not to be assigned to Wyclif, see Modem 
English, p. 49, foot-note 3. 

4 Knight of La Tour-Landry, p. 50. This work is referred, by its editor, Mr. 
Thomas Wright, to about A. D. 1372. 


so seie,' etc., etc. Three parts in four of the Repressor yield 
upwards of thirty such instances. Especially noteworthy, among 
them, are the following : 

" Whanne ever he takith upon him for to in neighbourli or brotherli maner cor- 
rcpte his Cristen neighbour or brother," etc. P. 2. 

" The more able, as bi that, he schal be forto perfitli, sureli, and sufficiently 
undirstonde Holi Scripture," etc. P. 43. 

" Therefore it is no nedeme forto, as here in this booke, encerche the writingis 
of Doctouris," etc. P. 71. 

" Oon maner is bi tiranrie, which is forto, in alle decdis of oz'erte, awaite and 
performe her owne profit oonli," etc. P. 299. 

In another treatise by Bishop Pecock, which may have preceded 
the Repressor by a few years, we find "forto so more witnesse," 
"forto it bileeve" "forto in it bitake"" 1 etc., etc. 

Not long before or after 1471, Sir John Fortescue 3 wrote : 

" It is not good for a kyng to oversore charge his people." 

For upwards of fifty years subsequently, I have, again, nothing 
in point to produce ; though it cannot be doubted that the authors 
belonging to that interval would, if examined closely, be found to 
afford many samples of the stamp of expression here considered. 

In the extracts which follow, the context of the phrases quoted 
will, for the most part, be copied but very briefly, where not 
omitted altogether. 

" To newe reedefy the castell." Lord Berners, Froissart (1523-152 5), Vol. I, 
p. 120. 

" To not believe it." Tyndale (1533), in Works, etc. (Parker Society), Vol. Ill, 

P- 234. 

" To flatly gainsaye." Rev. Dr. Thomas Stapleton, A Fortresse of the Faith, 
etc. (1565), fol. 23. 

" To truly performe this my will." Marie, Countess Dowager of Northumber- 
land (1572), in Wills and Inventories (Surtees Society), Vol. II, p. 7. 

" To covertly hide one flasket in the rushes." Sir John Harington (1608), in 
Nugae Antiquae (ed. 1804), Vol. I, p. 381. 

1 Pp. 5, 25. Single words elsewhere interposed are aright, it, meekly, not, them, 
thereby, therein, therewith, well. Add by their power, in them, on him, so richly, 
the more likingly, the rather, thereby thus, wisely and duly. 

-A Treatise proving Scripture to be the Rule of Faith (168S), pp. 26, 34, 36. In 
other places, as at pp. 18, 27, etc., the single words not and so are separative. 

The work here named comprehends, as' printed, only about a third of the 
whole; and its genuine title is The Book of Faith. See the Repressor (i860), 
Introduction, p. xxxii, note 2, and p. lxvii. 

3 Works (1869), p. 462. 


" To judicially weigh," " to strongly sustaine" " to always have" " to well rule 
or governe," "to well rule one's selfe." Rev. Dr. John Donne (died 1631), The 
Auncient History of the Septuagint (ed. 1633), pp. 47, 51, 107, 127. 

" To but onely retume home," " to both strike and thrust" James Hayward, 
The Banish'd Virgin (1635), pp. 20, 101. 

" To injuriously oppressed Henry, Earl of Monmouth, Translation of Biondi 
(1641, etc.), Books I— III, p. 112. 

" To grosly make the Scripture like a nose of wax." Rev. John Eaton, The 
Honey-combe of Free justification, etc. (1642), p. 282. 

" To either place himself." Rev. Dr. Henry More, Conjectura Cabbalistica 
(1653), p. 246. 

" To either believe or misbelieve a thing." Id., Enthusiasmus Triumphatus 
(1656), p. 10 (ed. 1662). 

" To either excuse , complete, or," etc. Id., A Collection of Several Philosophical 
Writings (1662), The Preface General, p. ix. 

" To better regulate" Anon., The History . . . of China (1655), p. 149. 

" To well manage our affections." Sir Thomas Browne (died 1682), True 
Christian Morals, I, 24. 

" To fully convince myself." Samuel Pepys (1699), Diary, etc. (ed. 1875, etc.). 
Vol. VI, p. 197. 

" To first acquaint your Grace with it." Rev. Dr. Richard Bentley (1716), 
Works (1836, etc.), Vol. Ill, p. 479. 

" To utterly abandon" Rev. Myles Davies, Athenae Britannicae (1716), Vol. 

II. P- 345- 

" To just waft them over." Defoe, A New Voyage, etc. (1725), p. 152 (ed. 

" To occasionally throw." Miss Catherine Talbot (1752), in Miss Carter's 
Letters to Miss Talbot, etc., Vol. II, p. 74. 

" To far exceed." Edmund Burke, A Philosophical Enquiry, etc. (1756), Part 

III, Section VI. 

" To effectually stifle." Id., Works (ed. 1826), Vol. XII, p. 69. 

" To boldly assert." John Wilkes, The North Briton, No. XIX (1762). 

" To exactly resemble" Samuel Foote, The Patron (1764), Act I, Scene I. 

" To quite bereave one of one's wits." Charles Dibdin, The Quaker (1777), 
Act I, Scene I. 

" To even bearwith." Madame D'Arblay (1778), Diary and Letters (ed. 1842, 
etc.), Vol. I, p. 55. 1 

" Milton was too busy to much miss his wife." Dr. Johnson, Life of Milton 


" To completely remove your fears." Frederic Pilon, He Would be a Soldier 
(1786), Act V, Scene I. 

1 No writer that I know of is so fond as Madame D'Arblay of the sort of 
disjunction for which she is here adduced. But a single quotation must answer 
as a specimen of the scores furnished by her Diary and Letters, novels, and 
Life of her father. Among her intercalations, as in " to even bear with," are 
absolutely, again, as little, both, constantly, coolly, entirely, frequently, instantly, 
quietly, quite, really, sometimes, thus, wholly. 


" To directly advance." Mr. Hammond (1787), in Olla Podrida, No. 34. 

" To fully believe." Robert Southey (1801), in Life and Correspondence, Vol. 
II, p. 156. 

" To entirely subside." S. T. Coleridge (1802), in Essays on His Own Times 
(1S50), p. 5S7. 

" To clean wife me out." Charles Lamb (1827?), in Letters (1837), Vol. II, p. 

" To sharply cliaracterize" William Taylor, Historic Survey of German Poetry 
(iS 3 o),Vol. Ill, p. 378. 

•' To not unfreatiently make excursions," "to still furthei' limit the hours." 
William Wordsworth (1843), Prose Works, etc. (1876), Vol. Ill, pp. 205, 209. 

" In order to fully appreciate* the character of Lord Holland," etc. Lord 
Macaulay, Critical and Historical Essays (1843), Vol. Ill, p. 315. 

" To of ten furnish" Mr. Thomas De Quincey (1850), Works (ed. 1862, etc.), 
Vol. XVI, p. 120. 

" To justly estimate." Mr. Herbert Spencer, Social Statics (1851), p. 124. 

" To first imperfectly conceive" " to perpetually repeat" " to positively assert" 
Id., Essays, etc., Vol. 1 (1858), p. 242 ; Vol. II (1863), p. 203 ; Vol. Ill (1874), 

F- 2 57- 

" To rigorously criticize," " to openly reassert." Bp. C. J. Ellicott, in Cambridge 
Essays (1856), pp. 158, 178. 

" To actually mention." Mr. Matthew Arnold, On Translating Homer (1S61), 
p. 72. 

" To somewhat abate" " to actually group" Id., Schools and Universities on the 
Continent (186S), Preface, p. viii, and p. 207. 

" To humbly offer" Id., Culture and Anarchy (1869), p. 95. 

" To clearly understand." Mr. John Ruskin, Unto this Last (1862), p. 82. 

" To gradually awaken" Mr. John W. Hales, in Essays ona Liberal Education 
(1867), p. 306. 

" To notably increase" " to rudely enforce" Dr. Henry Maudsley, The Physi- 
ology and Pathology of the Mind (1867), pp. 207, 208. 

" To straightway deny" " to clearly realize." Id., Body and Mind (1870), pp. 
57, 102. 

" To nearly ruin." Mr. W. R. Greg, Literary and Social Judgments (1868), p. 
445, foot-note. 

" To just hand him the letter." Mr. Charles Reade, Put Yourself in his 
Place (1870), Vol. Ill, p. 32., 

" To perfectly realize" Mr. Winwood Reade, The Mai-tyrdom of Matt (1872), 
p. 171. 

" To continually spread." Bp. Samuel Wilberforce, Speeches on Missions (1874), 
p. 116. 

" To rationally demand." Mr. St. George Mivart, in Essays on Religion and 
Literature, Third Series (1874), p. 220. 

" To really express." Mr. Richard Congreve, Essays, etc. (1874), p. 479. 

" To t/wroughly understand." Bp. Ullathorne, Mr. Gladstone's Expostulation 
Unravelled (1875), p. 22. 

1 Substituted for "fully to appreciate," for which see the Edinburgh Review, 
Vol. LXXIII (1841), p. 561. 


" To innocently rot." Mr. Leslie Stephen, History of English Thought, etc. 
(1876), Vol. I, p. 440. 

" To utterly destroy." Major R. D. Osborn, Islam under the Arabs (1876), p. 

" To still keep" ''to somiichaslook" "to again approach." Mr. W. H. Mallock, 
The New Paul and Virginia (1878), pp. 7, 73, 82. 

" To punningly translate? Mr. T. L. Kington Oliphant, The Old and Middle 
English (1878), p. 73. 

" To hastily borrow" Rev. Dr. F. G. Lee, The Church under Queen Elizabeth 
(1880), Vol. I, p. 22. 

Other sources than those which have here been laid under con- 
tribution, even if they were restricted to creditable living authors, 
would increase, to an indefinite extent, the preceding array of 
citations and references, which, moreover, might be augmented 
by recourse to almost any chance number of almost any first-class 
English journal of the last fifteen or twenty years. The question 
of usage, as concerns the matter in hand, consequently calls for no 
further particulars of proof. 

The expressions observed on simply exemplify an extended 
application of the principle which has given us the verbs anneal, 
backslide, foretell, gainsay, half -bind, misbelieve, outlive, overthrow , 
partake, undersell, tiproot, withdraw, and so on, with the obsolete 
tobreak, torend, etc., etc. The original of to fufil—fulfyllan, in 
Anglo-Saxon, — rwas to full fill, that is to say, to fully fill; and time 
might give us to full-appreciate, if we had as frequent occasion to 
speak of " appreciating fully " as our forefathers had to speak of 
" filling full," or " accomplishing." 

Though words and phrases are employed by very few persons 
save in passive sequacity of others, yet those who introduce them, 
and equally those who accept them deliberately, are generally 
influenced by something better than, for instance, a love of singu- 
larity or of innovation. And especially is this true of words and 
phrases which succeed in winning the practical suffrages of good 
speakers and writers. We are under no necessity, therefore, of 
setting to the account of " affectation," as a learned editor, already 
mentioned, has done, their choice of locutions like to fully appre- 
ciate. By this verbal collocation some of them, at least, it may 
be, conceive that they express notional incomplexity more directly 
than it is expressed by fully to appreciate, or by to appreciate fully ; 
just as is the case with to uphold, in comparison with to hold up, 
" defend," or with to revisit, in comparison with to visit again. 


How it has come to pass that professional authors so voluminous 
as Dr. Johnson, Lord Macaulay, and Mr. De Quincey are seen to 
furnish, so far as appears, only one example, each, of the phrase- 
ology under discussion, it would be fruitless to inquire. It is, 
however, somewhat remarkable, that the consideration which 
prompted those scanty examples, whether it was that which has 
been suggested above, or whether it was a desire of terseness, or 
of euphony," did not operate to multiply them in the pages of the 
vigilant stylists who have thus just countenanced their type. 


1 Now and then we come upon a sentence of which, if we stop short of 
altering its infinitive, the apparent nonsense can be removed only by resorting 
to such a construction as that here treated of. " I hope not much to tire those 
whom I shall not happen to please." Dr. Johnson, Rambler, No. I. Many 
would now write: "I hope to not much tire," etc. And Dr. Johnson, in his 
letters to Mrs. Thrale, has, most unclearly, " I think not to stay here long," and 
'• the black dog I hope always to resist," Take, again, the sentence, quoted and 
commented on by Mr. Goold Brown: " Honour teaches us properly to respect our- 
selves." The ambiguity of this may be obviated by putting " to properly respect" 
or, still better, by ending the sentence with the adverb. 

Mr. Brown, referring to Burns's " to nobly stem," observes : " The right to place 
an adverb sometimes between to and its verb should, I think, be conceded to 
the poets." Grammar of English Grammars (ed. 1873), p. 661.