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upon all these topics with the utmost acuteness; and the followers of Socrates excellently qualify the future orator for debates and examinations of witnesses. But in studying these writers, too, we must use similar judgment; and, though we may have to speak on the same subjects with them, we must bear in mind that the same manner is not suited for lawsuits as for philosophical disputations, for the forum as for the lecture room, for exercises on rules as for actual trials.
ON CORRECT STYLE IN PUBLIC SPEAKING
THEY, indeed, are greatly deceived who imagine that a vicious and corrupt style
of eloquence, which exults in a licentious kind of diction, wantons in puerile
fancies, swells with inordinary tumor, expatiates on empty commonplaces, decks itself with flowers that will fall if they are in the slightest degree shaken, prefers extravagance to sublimity, or raves madly under the pretext of freedom, will be the most gratifying to the people, and most likely to gain applause. That such a style does, however, please many, I do not deny, nor do I wonder; for eloquence of any kind whatsoever is pleasing to the ear, and likely to be favorably heard; all exertion of the human voice naturally draws the mind with a pleasing kind of attraction; it is from no other cause that there are such groups of listeners in market places and causeways; and it is, therefore, the less surprising that for every pleader a ring of the rabble is ready. But when anything more happily expressed than ordinary falls upon the ears of the illiterate, of whatever kind it be, provided that they themselves cannot hope to speak equally well, it gains their admiration, and not without reason, for even to speak just beyond the capacity of the uneducated is not easy. Such moderate excellence, however, fades and dies away when it is compared with anything better; as wool dyed red pleases, says Ovid, in the absence of purple, but if it be contrasted even with the purple of a common riding cloak, it will be thrown into the shade by the presence of something brighter than itself. If, again, we apply the light of a keen judgment to such tasteless eloquence as that of sulphur to inferior dye, it will immediately lose the false lustre, with which it had deceived the eye, and grow pale with an indescribable deformity. Such eloquence will accordingly shine only in the absence of the sun, as certain small animals appear to be little fires in the darkness. In short, many admire what is bad, but none condemn what is good.
But the orator must do all that I have mentioned not only in the best manner, but also with the greatest ease; for the utmost power of eloquence will deserve no admiration if unhappy anxiety perpetually attend it, and harass and wear out the orator, while he is laboriously altering his words, and wasting his life in weighing and putting them together. The true orator, elegant, sublime, and rich, commands copious materials of eloquence pouring in upon him from all sides. He that has reached the summit ceases to struggle up the steep. Difficulty is for him who is making his way and is not far from the bottom; but the more he advances, the easier will be the ascent and the more verdant the soil; and if, with persevering efforts, he pass also these gentler slopes, fruits will spontaneously present themselves, and all kinds of flowers will spring up before him, which, however, unless they are daily plucked, will be sure to wither. Yet even copiousness should be under the control of judgment, without which nothing will be either praiseworthy or beneficial; elegance should have a certain manly air, and good taste should attend on invention. Thus what the orator produces will be great, without extravagance; sublime, without audacity; energetic, without rashness; severe, without repulsiveness; grave, without dullness; plenteous, without exuberance; pleasing, without meretriciousness; grand, without tumidity. Such judgment will be shown with regard to other qualities; and the path in the middle is generally the safest, because error lies on either side.
THE FIVE DIVISIONS OF ORATORICAL ART
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The whole art of oratory, as the most and greatest writers have taught, consists 1 of five parts, invention, arrangement, expression, memory, and delivery or ac
tion; for the last is designated by either of these terms. But every speech, by which any purpose is expressed, must of necessity consist of both matter and words; and if it is short, and included in one sentence, it may perhaps call for no further consideration; but a speech of greater length requires attention to a greater number of particulars, for it is not only of consequence what we say, and how we say it, but also where we say it; there is need, therefore, also for arrangement. But we cannot say everything that our subject demands, nor everything in its proper place, without the assistance of memory, which will accordingly constitute a fourth part. And a delivery which is unbecoming, either as to voice or gesture, vitiates, and almost renders ineffectual, all those other requisites of eloquence; and to delivery, therefore, must necessarily be assigned the fifth place.
Nor are some writers, among whom is Albutius, to be regarded, who admit only the first three parts, because memory, they say, and delivery, come from nature, not from art. Thracymachus, however, was of the same opinion as far as concerns delivery. To these some have added a sixth part, by subjoining judgment to inven. tion, as it is our first business to invent and then to judge. For my part, I do not consider that he who has not judged has invented; for a person is not said to have invented contradictory or foolish arguments, or such as are of equal value to him. self and his adversary, but not to have avoided them. Cicero, indeed, in his « Rhetorica,” has included judgment under invention; but, to me, judgment appears to be so mingled with the first three parts (for there can neither be arrangement nor expression without it) that I think even delivery greatly indebted to it. This I would the more boldly affirm, as Cicero, in his « Partitiones Oratoriæ,» arrives at the same five divisions of which I have just spoken; for, after first dividing oratory into two parts, invention and expression, he has put matter and arrangement under inven. tion, and words and delivery under expression, and has then made memory a fifth part, having a common influence on all the rest, and being, as it were, the guardian of them. He also says, in his books « De Oratore,” that eloquence consists of five divisions; and the opinions expressed in these books, as they were written at a later period, may be regarded as more settled.
Those authors appear to me to have been not less desirous to introduce something new, who have added order after having previously specified arrangement, as if arrangement were anything else than the disposition of things in the best possible order. Dion has specified only invention and arrangement, but has made each of them of two kinds, relating to matter and to words; so that expression may be included under invention, and delivery under arrangement; to which parts a fifth, memory, must be added. The followers of Theodorus, for the most part, distinguish invention into two sorts, referring to matter and expression; and then add the three other parts. Hermagoras puts judgment, division, order, and whatever relates to expression, under economy, which, being a Greek term, taken from the care of domestic affairs, and used in reference to this subject metaphorically, has no Latin equivalent.
There is also a question about the following point, namely, that, in settling the order of the parts, some have put memory after invention, some after arrangement.
To me the fourth place seems most suitable for it; for we must not only retain in mind what we have imagined in order to arrange it, and what we have arranged in order to express it, but we must also commit to memory what we have comprised in words, since it is in the memory that everything that enters into the composition of a speech is deposited.
There have been also many writers inclined to think that these divisions should not be called parts of the art of oratory, but duties of the orator, as it is the business of the orator to invent, arrange, express, etc. But if we coincide in this opinion, we shall leave nothing to art; for to speak well is the duty of the orator, yet skill in speaking well constitutes the art of oratory; or, as others express their notions, it is the duty of the orator to persuade, yet the power of persuading lies in his art. Thus to invent arguments and arrange them are the duties of the orator; yet invention and arrangement may be thought peculiar parts of the art of oratory.
It is a point, too, about which many have disputed, whether these are parts of the art of oratory or works of it, or (as Athenæus thinks) elements of it. But no one can properly call them elements; for in that case they will be merely first principles, as water, or fire, or matter, or indivisible atoms are called the elements of the world; nor can they justly be named works, as they are not performed by others, but perform something themselves. They are, therefore, parts; for as oratory consists of them, and as a whole consists of parts, it is impossible that those things of which the whole is composed can be anything else but parts of that whole. Those who have called them works appear to me to have been moved by this consideration, that they did not like, in making the other division of oratory, to adopt the same term; for the parts of oratory, they said, were the panegyrical, the deliberative, and the judicial. But if these are parts, they are parts of the matter rather than the art; for in each of them is included the whole of oratory, since no one of them can dispense with invention, arrangement, expression, memory, and delivery. Some, therefore, have thought it better to say that there are three kinds of oratory; but those whom Cicero has followed have given the most reasonable opinion, namely, that there are three kinds of subjects for oratory.
THE THREE KINDS OF ORATORY
It is a question whether there are three or more. Certainly almost all writers, | at least those of the highest authority among the Ancients, have acquiesced
in this tripartite distinction, following the opinion of Aristotle, who merely calls the deliberative by another name, concionalis, «suitable for addresses to public assemblies.” But a feeble attempt was made at that time by some of the Greek writers, an attempt which has since been noticed by Cicero in his books « De Oratore," and is now almost forced upon us by the greatest author of our own day, to make it appear that there are not only more kinds, but kinds almost innumerable. Indeed, if we distinguish praising and blaming in the third part of ora. tory, in what kind of oratory shall we be said to employ ourselves when we complain, console, appease, excite, alarm, encourage, direct, explain obscure expressions, narrate, entreat, offer thatıks, congratulate, reproach, attack, describe, command, retract, express wishes or opinions, and speak in a thousand other ways ? So that if I adhere to the opinion of the Ancients, I must, as it were, ask pardon for doing so, and must inquire by what considerations they were induced to confine a subject of such extent and variety within such narrow limits. Those who say that the Ancients were in error suppose that they were led into it by the circumstance that they saw in their time orators exerting themselves for the most part in these three kinds only; for laudatory and vituperative speeches were then written; it was customary to pronounce funeral orations; and a vast deal of labor was bestowed on deliberative and judicial elequence; so that the writers of books on the art included in them the kinds of eloquence most in use as the only kinds. But those who defend the Ancients make three sorts of hearers; one, who assemble only to be gratified; a second, to listen to counsel; and a third, to form a judgment on the points in debate. For myself, while I am searching for all sorts of arguments in support of these various opinions, it occurs to me that we might make only two kinds of oratory, on this consideration, that all the business of an orator lies in causes either judicial or extrajudicial. Of matters in which decision is sought from the opinion of a judge, the nature is selfevident; those which are not referred to a judge have respect either to the past or to the future; the past we either praise or blame; and about the future we deliberate. We may also add that all subjects on which an orator has to speak are either certain or doubtful; the certain he praises or blames, according to the opinion which he forms of them; of the doubtful, some are left free for ourselves to choose how to decide on them, and concerning these there must be deliberation; some are left to the judgment of others, and concerning these there must be litigation. . . .
To me it has appeared safest to follow the majority of writers; and so reason seems to direct. There is, then, as I said, one kind of oratory in which praise and blame are included, but which is called, from the better part of its office, the panegyrical....
The second kind is the deliberative, and the third the judicial. Other species will fall under these genera, nor will there be found any one species in which we shall not have either to praise or to blame, to persuade or to dissuade, to enforce a charge or to repel one; while to conciliate, to state facts, to inform, to exaggerate, to extenuate, and to influence the judgment of the audience by exciting or allaying the passions, are common to every sort of oratory.
I could not agree even with those, who, adopting, as I think, a division rather easy and specious than true, consider that the matter of panegyrical eloquence concerns what is honorable, that of deliberative what is expedient, and that of judicial what is just; for all are supported, to a certain extent, by aid one from another, since in panegyric justice and expediency are considered, and in deliberations honor, and you will rarely find a judicial pleading into some part of which something of what I have just mentioned does not enter.
U THEN the pupil has been well instructed, and sufficiently exercised, in these VV preliminary studies, which are not in themselves inconsiderable, but mem
bers and portions, as it were, of higher branches of learning, the time will have nearly arrived for entering on deliberative and judicial subjects. But before I proceed to speak of those matters, I must say a few words on the art of declamation, which, though the most recently invented of all exercises, is, indeed, by far the most useful; for it comprehends within itself all those exercises of which I have been treating, and presents us with a very close resemblance to reality; and it has been so much adopted, accordingly, that it is thought by many sufficient of itself to form oratory, since no excellence in continued speaking can be specified which is not found in this prelude to speaking. The practice, however, has so degenerated through the fault of the teachers, that the license and ignorance of declaimers have been among the chief causes that have corrupted eloquence. But of that which is good by nature we may surely make a good use. Let, therefore, the subjects them. selves, which shall be imagined, be as like as possible to truth; and let declamations to the utmost extent that is practicable imitate those pleadings for which they were introduced as a preparation. For as to magicians, and the pestilence, and oracles, and stepmothers more cruel than those of tragedy, and other subjects more imaginary than these, we shall in vain seek them among sponsions and interdicts. * What, then, it may be said, shall we never suffer students to handle such topics as are above belief, and (to say the truth) poetical, so that they may expatiate and exult in their subject, and swell forth, as it were, into full body? It would, indeed, be best not to suffer them; but at least let not the subjects, if grand and turgid, appear also, to him who regards them with severe judgment, foolish and ridiculous; so that, if we must grant the use of such topics, let the declaimer swell himself occasionally to the full, provided he understands that, as four-footed animals, when they have been blown with green fodder, are cured by losing blood, and thus return to food suited to maintain their strength, so must his turgidity be diminished, and whatever corrupt humors he has contracted be discharged, if he wishes to be healthy and strong; for otherwise his empty swelling will be hampered at the first attempt at any real pleading.
Those, assuredly, who think that the whole exercise of declaiming is altogether different from forensic pleading, do not see even the reason for which that exercise was instituted. For, if it is no preparation for the forum, it is merely like theatrical ostentation, or insane raving. To what purpose is it to instruct a judge, who has no existence? To state a case that all know to be fictitious ? To bring proofs of a point on which no man will pronounce sentence? This, indeed, is nothing more than trifling; but how ridiculous is it to excite our feelings, and to work upon an audience with anger and sorrow, unless we are preparing ourselves by imitations of battle for serious contests and a regular field ? Will there, then, be no difference, it may be asked, between the mode of speaking at the bar, and mere exercise in declamation ? I answer that if we speak for the sake of improvement, there will be no difference. I wish, too, that it were made a part of the exercise to use names; that causes more complicated, and requiring longer pleadings, were invented; that we were less afraid of words in daily use; and that we were in the habit of mingling jests with our declamation; all which points, however we may have been practiced in the schools in other respects, find us novices at the bar.
But even if a declamation be composed merely for display, we ought surely to exert our voice in some degree to please the audience. For even in those oratorical compositions, which are doubtless based in some degree upon truth, but are adapted to please the multitude (such as are the panegyrics which we read, and all that epideictic kind of eloquence), it is allowable to use great elegance, and not only to acknowledge the efforts of art (which ought generally to be concealed in forensic pleadings), but to display it to those who are called together for the purpose of witnessing it. Declamation therefore, as it is an imitation of real pleadings and deliberations, ought closely to resemble reality, but, as it carries with it something of ostentation, to clothe itself in a certain elegance. Such is the practice of actors
* Law terms: sponsio was when a litigant engaged to pay a certain sum of money if he lost the cause; an interdict was when the pretor ordered or forbade anything to be done, chiefly in regard to property.-Turnebus.