Puslapio vaizdai

Seize, mortals! seize the transient hour;
Improve each moment as it flies:
Life's a short summer-man, a flower;
He dies-alas! how soon he dies!

Parenthesis. When, therefore, the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that he made and baptized more disciples than John (though Jesus himself baptized not, but his disciples), he left Judea, and went again into Galilee.

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I would not enter on my list of friends

(Though graced with polished manners and fine sense, Yet wanting sensibility) the man

That needlessly sets foot upon a worm.

The pulpit-(when the satirist has at last

Spent all his force, and made no proselyte-) say the pulpit (in the sober use


Of its legitimate, peculiar powers)

Must stand acknowledged while the world shall stand, The most important and effectual guard,

Support and ornament of Virtue's cause.

Let us (since life can little more supply
Than just to look about us and to die)
Expatiate free o'er all this scene of man ;
A mighty maze! but not without a plan.

Remarks.-In school, when a pupil or a class has made the above lesson familiar, and is able to read it

with ease, in the true colloquial style, let each be required to tell what he knows of punctuation, and what constitutes a sentence. Then let him tell what he understands about the "divisions of sense," accent, grouped divisions ;" and the analogy there is in uttering these to that of long words: also what he knows about the bars, half bars, slides, curves, circumflexes: and to prove that he understands them, let him mark with a pencil a number of the paragraphs in this lesson, into the proper divisions, just as his judgment may guide him: then go over the same, and apply the inflections, just as he thinks they should be used in reading the different passages.




IT is well to keep these facts constantly in mind, that good reading consists in faithfully copying out the best specimens of extemporaneous address; that its movements are graduated by "divisions" of one or more words, sometimes indica ed by punctuation, but oftener left to the good sense of the reader; that the grouped division is read with primary and secondary accent, like the pronunciation of a long word; and that every division is attended with one or more of the inflections called slides, curves and circumflexes.

Emphasis and cadence next claim the attention.

Emphasis, in its ordinary import, is a stress laid upon some significant word or words in a sentence to show its proper meaning; and cadence is simply a falling or lowering of the voice.

Emphasis is a word of Greek origin, and is used to represent that power in expression which serves the most clearly and forcibly to bring out the true signification of the passage. This is generally effected in our language by using a different inflection on the emphatic word, or by marking it with longer pause, or quantity, or stress. than is commonly used at a word having only the simple accent of a "division:" or the proper emphasis may require several of these appliances: and sometimes the emphasis is made more effectively by a sudden lowering, or deep depression of the voice. Hence the following definition:

Emphasis is the power which marks out in a sentence, some significant word or words on which the meaning depends, by just such stress, inflection, pause, quantity, and occasional depression, as serve best to explain and enforce that meaning: or emphasis consists in whatever is done by the voice and manner of a speaker to draw attention to any word or words uttered by him— whether it be precision in enunciating the whole word, stress of voice on the accented syllable, inflection, prolongation of a sound, a pause before the emphatic word or phrase, or a pause after them. Emphasis may be secured by any one of these methods, or by several of them combined.

Emphasis is, as it were, the pivot on which the whole sense of reading turns; and he who knows well where to

place it, and how to execute it properly, is quite certain to be right in other respects.

Language that is merely narrative, and without comparison, passion or emotion, seldom demands what is properly termed emphasis; e. g., John is a very diligent scholar. I



In this sentence, no force is required but the ordinary accent of a division; because there is no emotion, comparison or contrast. But introduce a comparison, and a demand for emphasis is perceived at once; e. g., John is quite as diligent a scholar as James. In reading the sentence now, the emphasis seems to be formed by laying greater stress on the words compared ; but, in truth, it is made by pronouncing John and James with opposite curves, increasing the pause a little at John, and quickening the movement of the middle division. Again: I say Jôhn || is a very diligent schòlar, not James! Now the emphasis is made on the same words by opposite circumflexes, and the middle division takes the falling slide.


The sleep of the laboring man is sweet. This is simple narrative; and in reading, requires but the simple accent of a division, with the rising slides. But, should the thought of an idle man enter the mind-and it could scarcely be otherwise-nothing more is required to show it in reading, than to give a slight emphasis to laboring by changing the inflection from a rising slide to a rising curve; pause a little more at sleep, and quicken the middle division; thus, The sleep | of the laboring mán is sweet.

But, in mere narrative, an important word introdu

cing a new thought, requires a slight emphasis, which is usually made by a slight pause after the word; as after John and sleep, in the passages above; yet such words have not generally been considered emphatic; though it is impossible to read well without calling attention to them in this way.

If I were an Américan as I am an Englishmán, while a foreign troop remained in my country, I NEVER would lay down my arms




In the last example, the emphasis is made on American and Englishman by the rising slide, and rising curve, attended with more force than ordinary accent; and on never, the first and second time used, by the falling slide and strong force, proportioned to the degree of emotion implied in the language: and the last never by the falling slide and a deep depression of the voice,—almost to a deep aspirated whisper, drawn up from the very bottom of the chest.

These examples show sufficiently that emphasis, in its stress, pause, inflection and quantity, is as diversified as the sense and feeling designed to be expressed by it; and that sense and feeling furnish the only guides to its proper use.

Some writers have divided emphasis into several kinds, called the inferior and the superior, the secondary and the primary; emphatic stress, compound stress, emphasis of contrast, and many more ;-distinctions which seem to me more likely to confuse than to assist

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