Here is the text in question for your convenience:

“Even among philosophers, we may say, broadly, that only those universals which are named by adjectives or substantives have been much or often recognized, while those named by verbs and prepositions have been usually over looked. This omission has had a very great effect upon philosophy; it is hardly to much to say that most metaphysics, since Spinoza, has been largely determined by it. The way this has occurred is, in outline, as follows: Speaking generally, adjectives and common nouns express qualities or properties of single things, whereas prepositions and verbs tend to express relations between two or more things. Thus the neglect of prepositions and verbs led to the believe that every proposition can be regarded as attributing a property to a single thing, rather than as expressing a relation between two or more things. Hence it was supposed that, ultimately, there can be no such entities as relations between things. Hence either there can be only one thing in the universe, or, if there are many things, they cannot possibly interact in any way, since any interaction would be a relation, and relations are impossible.

The first of these views, advocated by Spinozer and held in our own day by Bradley and many other philosophers, is called monism; the second, advocated by Leibniz but not very common nowadays, is called monadism, because each of the isolated things is called a monad. Both these opposing philosophies, interesting as they are, result, in my opinion, from an undue attention to one sort of universals, namely the sort represented by adjectives and substantives rather than by verbs and prepositions.” [Source: “Free Weekly Proofreading Exercise” at]

The Errors (underlined in the text, and yes, these are of minor nature but too often, our text gets convoluted because of them):
  1. “over looked” is misspelled in the original text, with “overlooked” being its correct form
  2. “to” should read as “too” in this context (this error is one that keeps creeping up on us way too often, and as such a culprit, it cannot be emphasized strongly enough as far as red alerts)
  3. “believe” is a misplaced word here, for we need its noun form, “belief”
  4. “Spinozer” is the misspelling of the actual name, “Spinoza”

Next week: More opportunities to practice proofreading


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