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read in an elevated, but hurried tone of voice, indicative of impatience and vexation, that spoken by Brutus, in a heavy tone, expressive of defiance.
4. Those tones of voice should be assumed, which are best adapted to personate with propriety the different individuals introduced into a dialogue. To ascertain these, regard must be had to the character of each, and the parts which they respectively sustain. For example, if it be a conversation between a father and child, the latter would be represented by a high, sprightly tone of voice, and the former by a low, heavy tone.
5. The following extract from Sir Walter Scott, may serve as an example, in the reading of which, the pitch and quantity of voice, calculated to represent each, are somewhat similar. The first would be personated by a heavy, commanding tone,-the second, by a tone somewhat higher, and not so full at first, but increasing in quantity toward the close, expressive of defiance.
In dread, in dánger, and alóne,
Famished and chilled, through ways unknown,
6. Care should be taken on the part of the reader, lest in varying the voice, he assumes an unnatural whining tone, to which there is great liability, especially in reading or speaking on a high key. Much skill is requisite in modulating the voice with ease and gracefulness, and much practice necessary to represent properly the various characters introduced in dialogues. It is therefore particularly recommended, that each scholar be required to read the various parts in connection, which will afford the most efficient means of acquiring the art of personating with propriety.
Another subject, which may properly be classed under this head, is
1. EXPRESSION includes all those peculiarities in the modulation of the voice, attendant on expressing the emotions of the mind.
2. The language of every emotion is expressed in its own peculiar style, to determine which, the good taste and judg ment of the reader must be consulted. For example, the common question, "What are you doing?" may be asked in a style, expressing feelings of kindness or displeasure. These peculiarities of the voice, are as various as the emo tions of the mind itself, and can not be defined by specific rules. Sometimes it should be grave-sometimes livelysometimes it should express ridicule and contempt-sometimes pity and compassion. No one, certainly, having a just sense of proprietv, would read examples expressing all these emotions with the same tone of voice. Indeed, nature, as far as art is able to do it, should be imitated.
QUESTIONS.-1. What is Personation? 2. How may it be regarded? 3. How do the voices of different individuals vary? 4. How may the voices of two or more individuals be generally represented? 5. What is said of reading dialogues in one uniform tone of voice? 6. Read the example, and show how the voice should be varied. 7. What tones of voice should be assumed in personating? 8. How can you ascertain these? 9. Give an example. 10. How should the extract from Sir Walter Scott be read? 11. Against what is the reader cautioned in varying the voice? 12. What is recommended in acquiring the art of personating properly? 13. What is understood by Expression? 14. What is said of the peculiarities of the voice, and how should it be varied?
1. RHETORICAL PAUSES are those which are frequently required by the voice in reading and speaking, although the construction of the passage admits of no grammatical pause.
2. These pauses are as manifest to the ear, as those which are made at the comma, semicolon, or other grammatical
puses, though not commonly denoted in like manner by Vxible signs. For the present convenience they may be marked thus ( ).
1. In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2. Hypocrisy is an homagell that vicell pays to virtue.
3. Man's chief goodll is an upright mind.
4. No legacy is so rich as honesty.
3. This pause is frequently made before or after the utlerance of some important word, or clause, on which it is especially desired to fix the attention. In such cases, it is isually denoted by the use of the dash (—).
1. What I say unto you, I say unto all-watch.
2. He touched his harp--and nations heard entranced.
3. We carved not a line, we raised not a stone,
4. Ah! lady, I have learned too well,
What 'tis to be-an orphan boy.
5. But that the dread of something after death-
7. The purest treasure mortal times afford,
4. In order that the attention may be more intently fixed on the important word or clause, the voice, in its utterance, is usually changed to a lower tone than that, in which other portions are read.
5. In a rapid flow of utterance, a sudden pause arrests the attention; and it is mainly on this account, if skillfully employed, that it often produces the most happy effect. It has a tendency to excite expectation, and fix the entire at- tention on what is subsequently expressed.
6. As to the length of this, or the common grammatical pauses, the correct taste of the reader must decide, as no definite rule can be given. The common rule that the voice should rest at a comma while counting one, at a semicolon while counting two, and thus on, may serve a good purpose in giving some idea of the relation which they bear to ore another, in the grammatical construction of a sentence, but it is a rule that rarely, if ever, should be observed in the reading. For the voice should sometimes rest longer at the
same pause in one situation than in another. Thus, the pause made at the end of a paragraph, should be longer, and more clearly marked, than that which is ordinarily made at a period. So, also, at the commas in the following couplet,
"Who lives to nature, rarely can be poor;
the voice is suspended less time, than at those in the follow. ing sentence:
Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your ears.
QUESTIONS.-1. What are Rhetorical Pauses? 2. How do these compare with grammatical pauses? 3. How may it be denoted? 4. Where is it frequently made? 5. How is it then denoted? 6. In what tone of voice are the important words and clauses usually read? 7. What effect is often produced by the use of this pause? 8. How is the reader to decide as to the length of this, or the grammatical pauses? 9. Does the voice always rest the same length of time on the same grammatical pause?
THE READING OF POETRY.
1. POETRY requires to be read with a peculiar grace of expression. Its characteristic delicacy of sentiment, and beauty of language, as well as the sense and metrical flow, must be regarded. To execute this in all respects with propriety, requires the exercise of no ordinary skill and judg
2. English verse consists in a succession of accented and unaccented syllables, usually occurring at regular intervals. The lines generally have a given number of syllables, and in far the largest portion, the accented syllable is the second, fourth, sixth, &c. The long or accented syllable is denoted thus (), the short or unaccented, thus (~).
Yě nymph of Solymā, běgin the song,
-To heavenly themes sublimer strains bělōng.
3. It must be borne in mind, that the occurrence of metri. cal accent, is far from being uniform, as it is often varied by the sense and established pronunciation. Thus,
1. The soul ăscends above the sky,
How sweet when labors close,
4. This change of the accent from its regular occurrence, is often attended with fine effect in the reading.
O'er the glad waters of the dark blue sea,
5. An immediate succession of several accented syllables, is read as the monotone, as at the end of the first line in the preceding example.
6. Besides this succession of accented syllables, there is anc her characteristic worthy of notice in the reading of poetry, which is the occurrence of pauses. These are different in character from the grammatical pauses, though they frequently coincide with them. They are generally regarded as two in number; namely, the final pause, and the cesural pause; the former occurring at the end of a line, and the latter, in or near the middle, being found only in certain kinds of verse.
There is a land,ll of every land the pride,
7. There is still another pause, which sometimes occurs, called the demi-cesura, which subdivides each division of the ine, already made by the cesura. Denoted thus (1).
Warms in the sun, || refreshes | in the breeze,