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effect that great revolution which has recently taken place with regard to the cultivation of grammatical science, and which so highly redounds to the honour and glory of the age in which we live, be is proud to believe. Since the days of Lowth, no other work on grammar, Murray's excepted, has been so favourably received by the publick as his
As one proof of this he would mention, that within the last six years, it has passed through fifty editions. * By its unfolding, and explaining, and applying the principles of grammar, it has brought this hitherto abstruse science within the reach of the humblest capacity, and thereby encouraged thousands, and tens of thousands, to acquire a knowledge of this important branch of learning, who, otherwise, would have passed it by with neglect.
In the interiour of Pennsylvania and the State of New York, in the Western States, in the lower regions of the Mississippi valley, and in many other sections of our country into which the author's work has penetrated, and become the general text-book in grammar, the number of those who are now successfully cultivating a knowledge of this science, is nearly or quite twice as great as it was before his treatise was introduced; and in many neighbourhoods, it has more than quadrupled. This flattering success, then, of his first essay in authorship, has encouraged himn to adventure upon another branch of science which, for some years past, has particularly engaged his attention. That he is capable of doing ample justice to his present subject, he has not the vanity to imagine; but if his knowledge drawn from observation, and experience in teaching elocution, enable him so to treat the science as to call the attention of some to its cultivation, and induce others more capable than himself to write upon it, he will thereby contribute his mite towards rescuing from neglect a branch of learning which, in its important bearings upon the prosperity of the free citizens of this great republick, stands second to none: and thus, in the consciousness of having rendered a new service to his country, he will secure the reward of his highest ambition. Should this first edition be at all greeted by the friends of science, he will endeavour to improve his work, and ultimately send it forth with less imperfections resting upon its head.
Some may think, that, in a few instances, the author has taken an undue liberty with the style of the writers whose labours he has appropriated. But when it is considered, that this work is designed chiefly to be read in schools, where grammatical improprieties would be extremely injurious to the germinating taste of the young reader, it will doubtless be conceded, that the sacrilege of disturbing the monuments of the dead—the profanation of removing a little of the rust and rubbish which adhere to the precious gems of an antiquated, or even of a modern, author, is, on the whole, a lighter transgression than either to neglect to furnish the rich banquet, or to get it up in a slovenly manner.
The scientifick portion of this mannal, is far more defective than it would have been, had not the author, since making arrangements for publishing it, been prevented, by unfavourable, unforeseen, and uncontrollable circumstances, from devoting half that time and attention to its composition and arrangement, which even a tolerable degree of excellence in execution, required. His highest aim has been to treat the subject briefly and practically; and thereby to render his work uscful to such as have but little leisure to devote to this science.
• It has now (1835) passed through over one hundred and twenty editions.
In the selected part, he has endeavoured to present such pieces as are calculated to cultivate the taste, enlighten the understanding, improve the judgment, and establish the morals of the young, and, at the same time, to inspire them with a fondness for reading, and a desire to excel in the science of elocution.
In conclusion, it affords the author no small degree of pleasure to acknowledge the obligation he is under to Dr. James Rush, who, with a liberality peculiar to superiour minds, and a courtesy exercised only by accomplished men, tendered to the author, in the compilation and arrangement of his work, such a use of his own, admirable treatise on the
Philosophy of the Human Voice,” as he might think proper to make. This remark will sufficiently explain to the reader, the grounds of that license by which the author has drawn so many of his best materials from the rich depository alluded to.*
ADVERTISEMENT TO THE THIRD EDITION.
MANKIND are more frequently swayed by prejudice than reason. Reason has a clear eye; but prejudice is blind, and either clings tenaciously to old doctrines and time-worn systems, or gropes forward in imminent danger of stumbling upon the dark mountains, of errour. Hence, new systems generally meet with more opposers than advocates; and hence, too, bad systems and false doctrines, on their first promulgation, gain as many proselytes as those that are genuine and useful. We need not wonder, then, that philosophers have been imprisoned, statesmen banished, poets starved, apostles beheaded, and that the Saviour of men was crucified, while dupes and impostors have been countenanced, honoured, and even deified. Nor need we be astonished that every successful improvement in science and the arts, has gained its popularity only by slow degrees. That reformer, therefore, who would succeed, must not attempt, at once, any great innovation. It is in accordance with this maxim, that I have undertaken to do but a little in the following Essay.
They who have long groped in the darkness of a dungeon, cannot bear to be suddenly ushered into the full glare of a noonday's sun. How can it be expected, then, that those who have hitherto been content to read, or rather, try to read, without a knowledge of any of the principles of reading, can be persuaded to adopt, at once, all the principles of the science ? Believing it better to do a little good, than no good, I have contented myself, for the present, with presenting to the publick, only those principles of elocution that I deem most important in practice, leaving it for a future opportunity, or to those who may succeed me,
* It is the design of the Author to publish, in the course of a year or two, a SEQUEL to this work, and soon to follow that by a treatise on RHETORICK. He may likewise deem it advisable to publish an INTRODUCTION to this Essay.
ADVERTISEMENT TO THE THIRD EDITION.
to give a more extensive and complete treatise upon the subject. To a man who is wandering in the dark, a farthing candle is better than no light.
Inattention to principles in our systems of instruction, has long been complained of by the discerning few; and, although some slight reformation in regard to this point, has taken place in our schools, yet the great importance of it, is still, both by teachers and parents, too generally overlooked. That the examination and investigation of principles, in any art or science, are highly calculated to call into active ex. ercise the reasoning faculties, is universally admitted. How inconsistent is it, then, to think of teaching children to read, without causing them to pay attention to the principles of reading !- It is hoped that so gross an absurdity as this, will not much longer disgrace our schools and seminaries of learning.
The investigation and application of the principles of elocution, as well as the study of the principles of grammar, arithmetick, philosophy, phrenology, and so forth, tend not only to develop and expand the intellectual powers, but, also, in a pre-eminent degree, to cultivate the. taste, and refine the mind.
We boast of our liberal institutions, and of our admirable form of government : nay, more; of our intelligence. It is admitted that we have done much for the cause of learning; but who cannot perceive, that much remains to be done before we can justly lay claim to that noble and refined excellence which ought to adorn a great, a prosperous, and a free people? Who will deny, that, in the general scramble after wealth, most of our citizens overlook the refined, the beautiful, in their too eager pursuit of the useful? Who will deny, that, with us, even at the present day, the
standard value of every discovery and improvement in science and the arts, is not, (as it ought to be,) the amount it will add to the happiness of man-is not, its tendency to enlighten, to refine, to liberalize him, and elevate him in the scale of being; but -its ability to improve his condition in the mere matter of dollars and cents ?-—and that most of our systems of education, as well as the branches taught in our schools, are exclusively shaped to this end?INTELLIGENCE! And is this our standard of intelligence, flowing from our boasted principles of enlightened freedom ? Has refincment, has elegance, nothing to do with national excellence, with national greatness ? Shall it any longer be said, that the breath of liberty blights the fine arts, and banishes refinement ? Shall American freemen merit the reproach of being a nation of misers ?-I leave it to the legislators and statesmen of our country to answer these interrogatories, and to say, whether a state of prosperity has not arrived, which would justify a more liberal course of policy in regard to our school-systems and the encouragement of the fine arts--a course embracing, not only the useful, but, also, the elegant:and especially to decide, whether refinement of manners (which would naturally flow from such a course of policy) would be dangerous to the liberties of our country.
To the teacher it may be proper to remark, that one hundred and eighty pages of this third edition, exactly correspond with the same pages of the second edition, but that other parts of the work have been enlarged, and slightly altered, and, it is hoped, for the better. In order to prevent farther alterations, however, the work has been stereotyped.
Of the unaccented Vowel Sounds Analysis of Force,
elementary Sounds to be Antithetick Emphasis,
Of miscalling Words,
48 Emphasis, Superiour and Inferi-
55. The sense of a paesage, de-
Concrete and Discrete Slides,
Errours in regard to Pitch and Of the Emphatick Pause,
Rising Infection or Slide, of a Rhetorical Action,
Dr. Johnson, 160 | Traits of Indian Character,
Scenes in Italy, Lady Morgan, 176 Gray's Elegy,
Cardinal Wolsey's Soliloquy on On Ugly Women,
National Gazette, 201 Webster's Speech in reply to