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few rules judiciously arranged and cautiously applied, by their pointing out the most harmonious and agreeable variety that may be adopted in the enunciation of the different kinds of series. If they merely prevent that tasteless and unendurable monotonous manner so often exhibited in the pronunciation of such constructions, they effect, not merely a negative, but a pos: itive, good.
A SIMPLE SERIES consists of two or more single words or particulars, following each other in the same construction, either in commencing or in closing a sentence.
NOTE 1. When a sentence commences with two particulars, the first may have the falling, and the second, the rising, inflection. Example : “Exercise and temperance' strengthen the constitution."
Observation 1. It has already been shown that the upward and the downward slides of the voice vary very greatly in der gree or extent. Care should be taken in reading the foregoing example, that the downward slide on the word exercise, be but slight—not more than one tone, or the falling slide of a second.
Obs. 2. In Mr. Walker's zeal to build up, and support, a the ory, possibly it never occurred to him, that neither the foregoing, nor the following, rules, are grounded in the philosophy of language, nor on the philosophical principles of vocal sounds, but merely on the ideal principles of good taste. Very well. But
may not the principles of good taste, vary? Unquestionably they may:* and with every variation of these principles, the rules that are founded on them, must, of necessity, undergo a corresponding change. Hence, it would be no particular detriment to the elocution of the foregoing example, were we to give the rising inflection to both of the commencing particulars; for a pleasing variety (which a just elocution absolutely demands) may be given to their enunciation merely by modula
Possibly the fastidiously critical in the use of terms, will take exceptions to this remark. But without wishing to provoke criticism, or to start the supposition that he is willing to handle words loosely, the author begs leave to remark, that all he means by the phrase, "the principles of good taste may vary," is, perhaps, expressed in the phrase, "good taste may vary.". This last proposition, however, he maintains to bə true: and its correctness, he believes, is fully established by some of the illustrations which follow. One man may enunciate a series, sentence, or passage, in a masterly and an elegant manner, and another may pronounce the same in a manner equally elegant and chaste, though in a style widely different from the first; and at the same time, it might defy all the laws of philosophy, of rhetorick, and elocution, to provo Which of the two has the advantage in elegance and accuracy of taste.
tion and expression, or, in other words, by varying the tone and force of the voice, as it passes from one word to the other, with. out perceptibly varying the inflection: thus, “Exercise and temperance' strengthen the constitution."
It may be proper to add, however, that the rule is useful, as its observance will be sure to enforce a variety in the enunciation of the two words, which, without it, might be pronounced in a disagreeable monotone : and, furthermore, its direction will suggest a very pleasing and natural variety, perhaps the best that can be given.
NOTE 2. When a sentence closes with two single particulars, the first takes the rising, and the second, the falling, inflection: Eg. " The constitution is strengthened by exercise' and temperance."
Observation. As it is necessary that this sentence should close with the falling inflection, or with that peculiar, falling vanish called a cadence, the principles of melody require, that the voice should rise on the last word but one of the closing series. Hence, this rule is based upon a principle of vocal utterance, and cannot be set aside by any notion of arbitrary taste.
NOTE 3. When three single particulars occur at the commencement of a sentence, the first and second may take the falling, and the third, the rising, inflection: Eg. “Manufactures'
, trade', and agriculture'
, employ the greater portion of the human species."
Obs. Here it may be observed, again, that, although the three words, "manufactures, trade, and agriculture," ought not to have the same inflection of voice given to each, yet, whether the rising inflection should be given to the first, and the falling, to the second, or, vice versa, or whether they should be inflected according to the directions of the rule, is a mere matter of taste. This may appear more obvious by reading the sentence successively, in the three following, different ways:
“ Manufactures', trade, and agriculture', employ the greater portion of the human species :
" Manufactures, trade, and agriculture', employ the greater portion of the human species :"
" Manufactures', trade, and agriculture', employ the greater portion of the human species."
It may be proper to observe, however, in regard to the second of these readings, that, as the words "trade and agriculture," take the same inflection, it becomes the more important that the
modulation given to each, should be varied, the one from the other.
Note 4. When three single particulars occur at the close of a sentence, the first and third may take the falling, and the second, the rising, inflection: Eg. Whatever obscurities may involve religious tenets, the essence of true piety consists in humility', love', and devotion."
Obs. It may be useful again to caution the learner against the very common, but not very tolerable, errour of giving the voice too intense a downward slide on ordinary, unemphatick words which take the falling inflection. The purport and the propriety of this caution will appear more obvious to the unprac. tised student, if, in pronouncing the foregoing example, he be particular to observe, that a correct enunciation allows his voice to slide only half as low on the word “humility,” (if he give it the falling inflection; which is by no means necessary,) as on the word “devotion,” where the voice takes the intense, downward slide of a third, which belongs to the cadence.
NOTE 5. When four single words form a commencing series, the first and fourth may take the rising, and the second and third, the falling, inflection: Eg. “Metals', minerals', plants', and meteors', contain a thousand curious properties which are as engaging to the fancy as to the reason.
“ Proofs of the immortality of the soul may justly be drawn from the nature of the Supreme Being, whose justice', goodness', wisdom', and veracity', are all concerned in this great point."
NOTE 6. When four single words form a concluding series, the first and fourth may have the falling, and the second and third, the rising, inflection : Eg. “The four elements of which, according to the old philosophers
, the material world is composed, consist of fire', water', air', and earth'.”
“He who resigns the world, has no temptation to envy', hatred', malice', anger', but is in constant possession of a serene mind; he who follows the pleasures of it, which are in their very nature disappointing, is in constant search of care', solicitude', remorse', and confusion'."
Obs. It will readily be perceived, that similar observations may be applied to Rules 5 and 6, to those which were made in reference to the rules that precede them. Indeed, as the number of particulars under these last two rules, is increased, so may the variety of inflections applicable to the particulars, be proportionately increased. It should be observed, however, that whatever may be the number of particulars in a simple series,
the last one in a commencing series, always requires the rising inflection, and the last in a closing series, if in a common affirmative sentence, the falling inflection.
NOTE 7. When a long list of single words, forms a commencing series, they may be divided from the right into periods or groups of three words each: the last period may be read according to the direction of Rule 3, and the others, according to Rule 4, and the odd particulars, agreeably to Rule 1. Eg. “Gold', silver', copper', iron', and lead', are abundant in various parts of the western continent.”
“Cotton', coffee', sugar, rum', molasses', spices, fruits, and drugs', are the common products of the West Indies."
" Love, joy', peace', long-suffering, gentleness', goodness, faith', meekness', temperance', are the fruits of the spirit; and against such things there is no law."
NOTE 8. When a long list of particulars forms a concluding series, a similar division into periods may be applied to them, and each period may be read according to Rule 4, and odd ticulars, agreeably to Rule 1: Eg. "The science of elocution is noble', refined', elegant", pleasing', and useful', intricate', philosophical', and wonderful*;" [but some of these rules are foolish, trifling', and unimportant.]
· The fruits of the spirit are love , joy', peace', long-suffering , gentleness', goodness', faith', meekness', temperance': against these there is no law."
A COMPOUND SERIES consists of two or more phrases or distinct members of a sentence, succeeding each other in a similar construction.
NOTE 1. When two or more phrases or members form a commencing, compound series, the last takes the rising inflection, and all the rest, the falling. Eg. "To advise the ignorant', relieve the needy', comfort the afflicted”, are duties that fall in our way almost every day of our lives.”
"The ignorance of the moderns', the scribblers of the age, and the decay of poetry', are the topicks of detraction with which a bard of our country makes his entrance into the world."
NOTE 2. When two or more members form a closing, compound series, they all adopt the falling inflection, except the penultimate or last member but one, and this should have the rising: Eg. "Statues can last but a few thousand years', edifices fewer', and colours still fewer than edifices'."
“ A discreet and virtuous friend relieves the mind', improves the understanding', engenders new thoughts', awakens good resolutions'
, and furnishes employment for the most vacant hours in life.”
Observation. This last Note is an important one; but this, the substance of the one preceding it, and of several others which occur under the head of the Simple Series, are comprehended in Rule 7, page 82.
SERIES OF SERIES.
The recurrence of two or more simple particulars, combined with two or more compound particulars, and all united in forming a series of a sentence, constitute what is termed a SERIES OF SERIES.
NOTE. When several members occur which are composed of similar or opposite particulars, and are divided into couplets or triplets, they may be enunciated singly according to the appropriate rules of a simple series, but, as forming a whole compound series, agreeably to the rules applicable to the respective number and variety of compound particulars contained in the sentence.
“For I am persuaded that neither death', nor life', nor angels', nor principalities', nor powers', nor things present', nor things to come', nor height', nor depth', nor any other creature', shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord'."
"Those evil spirits who, by long custom, have contracted in the body habits of lust and sensuality', malice' and revenge, and an aversion to every thing that is good', just', and laudable', are naturally seasoned and prepared for pain and misery."
This scheme of Mr. Walker's for arranging and classifying the various series of words, and of applying to them a systematick set of rules, certainly displays no little ingenuity, and cannot but be productive of some utility; but it is by no means a cause of regret to ascertain, on an examination of it, that