Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Diagramming

Both PZ and Adam Z sent this lovely article, which points out that the art of diagramming sentences was invented just 12 miles down the road from us in Homer, NY, back in 1847. I studied diagramming exactly once, in seventh grade in California. Despite its New York origin, it was long out of favor in New York when I went to school here. For me, though not for anyone else in my class, it was a revelatory experience that explained more about language than anything I've read or done since. At one point, in a flurry of showoffiness, I diagrammed the Preamble to the Constitution. I doubt I could do it today.

1 comment:

Diane said...

BT learned diagramming in middle school, and we gave his teacher a poster showing the longest sentence ever written (Proust, of course) diagrammed.