Imagens das páginas

He who spends his time in idleness, if he does not become pènniless, will have but little to bestow on others.

Remark 1.-If the rising inflection be made on penniless, the sense would be perverted, and the passage made to mean, that in order to be able to bestow on others, it is necessary' that he should become penniless!

Remark 2.-That clause of a sentence, which is merely introductory to a quotation, should be read with the rising inflection, on the principle of the pause of suspension. Thus, They answered and said, We can not tell." Here the quotation is the direct grammatical object of the verb said, and should not be separated from it by the falling inflection, as though the sense were complete.

[ocr errors]


Expressions of tender emotion, as of grief, or kindness, commonly incline the voice to the rising inflection.


1. Mother, I leave thy dwelling;
Oh! shall it be forever?

With grief my heart is swelling,
From thée, from thée,-to séver.

2. O peace of mind, angelic guést,
Thou soft companion of the breast,
Dispense thy balmy store!


The penultimate pause, or the last but one in a sentence, usually has the rising inflection,


1. Without controversy. great is the mystery of godliness; God was manifest in the flesh. justified in the spirit seen of àngels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glòry.

2. Then, pilgrim tùrn. thy cares foregò;
All earth-born cares are wrong;

Man wants but little here belów,
Nor wants that little lòng.

3. Be pèrfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace.

NOTE I. The rising inflection is employed at the penultimate pause in order to promote variety, since the voice generally falls at the end of a sentence.

NOTE II.—In some instances, the penultimate pause takes the falling inflection, especially when accompanied with strong emphasis. Thus,

1. You wronged yourself, to write in such a case.

2. All I ask, all I wish, is a tèar.

QUESTIONS.-1. What is the Rule for the inflection on the pause of suspension? 2. What inflection has the ordinary direct address? 3. On what principle? 4. What inflection does the pause of suspension sometimes require? 5. Why? 6. Give an example, and show how the sense would be perverted, if the rising be used. 7. Repeat Rule V. 8. What Rule is given for the inflection at the last pause but one in a sentence? 9. Why is the rising inflection used at the penultimate pause? 10. What inflection generally has the final pause? 11. When does the penultimate take the falling inflection?



Expressions of strong emotion, as of anger or surprise, and also the language of authority and reproach, are uttered with the falling inflection.

[ocr errors][merged small]

1. Wòe unto him that saith to the wood, Awake!

To the dumb stone, Arìse, it shall teach!

2. Help, àngels, make assày!

Bow, stubborn knees! and hearts with strings of steel,
Be soft as sinews of the new-born babe.

3. Hènce, home, you idle creatures, get you home;

You blocks, you stones, you worse than useless things. 4. Save me, and hover o'er me with your wings,

Ye heavenly guàrds!

5. Go to the raging sea, and say, "Be still!"

Bid the wild lawless winds obey thy will;
Preach to the storm, and reason with despair,
But tell not misery's son-that life is fair.

NOTE I. The direct address, when accompanied with strong emphasis; exclamations, not expressive of tender emotion or used as questions; the language of terror and denunciation; are included in this Rule, and expressed with the falling inflection.


1. Wòc unto thee, Choràzin, Wòe unto thee, Bethsaida!
2: Cesar cried, Help me, Càssius, or I sink!

3. He woke to hear his sentry's shriek,

"To àrms! they come! the Greek! the Greek!"

4. What a piece of work is màn! How noble in reason! How in finite in faculties! In form and moving, how express and admirable! In action, how like an àngel! In apprehension, how like a god!

Remark. This Rule is the reverse of Rule V., having reference to expressions of emotions of an opposite nature,-that to those of kindness, this of unkindness; that of delicate affection, this of excited passion. Generally, expressions which come under this Rule, are accompanied with strong emphasis, while those of rule V., with a slight stress of voice.


Emphatic succession of particulars, and emphatic repetition, require the falling inflec



1. True gentleness teaches us to bear one another's burdens; to rejoice with those who rejoice; to weep with those that weep; to please every one his neighbor for his good; to be kind and tender heàrted; to be pitiful and courteous; to support the weak; and to be patient toward àll men

2. This, this, is thinking frèe, a thought that grasps
Beyond a gràin, and looks beyond an hour.

3. Are you going home? Are you going home?

[blocks in formation]

Rock-ribb'd and ancient as the sun; the vales
Stretching in pensive quietness between;

The venerable woods; rivers that move

In majesty, and the complaining brooks

That make the meadows green; and, pour'd round all,
Old ocean's gray and melancholy waste;

Are but the solemn decorations all

Of the great tomb of màn.

Remark 1.-Whatever inflection may have been given a word or passage, when first expressed, it has the falling, if repeated. The reason of this is, by the variation of the voice, to arrest the attention, which otherwise might not be secured, or to fix more intently on the mind some important word or passage, which, without this inflection, might escape notice. Thus, when a person is repeatedly addressed,


"Hénry, Hènry;" "Abrahám, Abrahàm." So, also, to fix the attention on each, the falling inflection is used in case of an emphatic succession of particulars.

NOTE I.-The stress of voice on each successive particuJar, should gradually be increased as the subject advances. In general the same may be said in regard to each repetition.

Remark 2.-This Rule has reference to the reading of passages, which are, in some instances, so very similar to those embraced under the Rule for the pause of suspension, which requires the rising inflection, that it is often diflicult to determine which reading is to be preferred. Whichever inflection prevails, will depend on the degree of emphasis necessarily employed. If the sense requires an intense degree, this Rule is applicable, if only a slight degree, that of the pause of suspension.

QUESTIONS.-1. What is Rule VII.? 2. What other particulars, besides those first mentioned, are embraced in this Rule? 3. In what respect does this Rule differ from Rule V. 4. Repeat Rule VIII. 5. What reason can you assign for the use of the falling inflection in cases of repetition? 6. What, in the case of a succession of particulars? 7. With what stress of voice should each successive particular be read? 8. To the passages of what other Rule, are those of this similar? 9. How do you determine which reading should prevail?





The Circumflex is mainly employed in the language of irony, and in expressing ideas implying some condition, either expressed or understood.


1. I fear I wrong the honorable men,
Whose daggers have stabb'd Cesar.

2. Bold can he speak, and fairly ride,
I warrant him a warrior tried.

3. Cassius. And this man

Is now become a god; and Cassius,
A wretched creature.

4. He is a good scholar, though his advantages have been small.

5. He would like to enjoy the reputation of a good reader, though he has not the perseverance requisite to becòme one.

6. Men are willing to endure the most severe toil to gain wealth.

Remark 1.-By the use of the circumflex in the last example, there is suggested some negative circumstance, as follows, "though they will take no pains to gain knowledge." If one inquires of another concerning the state of a friend who is dangerously sick, and should receive the reply, "he is better," the use of the circumflex would denote that he is still dangerouly sick; but if he replies, "he is better," the falling inflection would convey the idea of a positive amendment and hopes of recovery

2. It has been previously remarked, that the rising inflection and circumflex are so nearly allied, that, in many instances, it may be very difficult to determine which should receive the preference in the reading of a passage. This is particularly the case where intense inflection is not required. But the difference between the circumflex and the falling inflection, is so obvious, as it regards the modification of the voice, as connected with the true meaning of whatever is read, that no one would be liable to mistake which should be employed. The one implies a conditional assertion, the latter denotes a positive one.

3. The most important rules for the use of inflections, have now been presented. Those whose early instruction has been judicious, and whose reading books have been of the right character, will find no difficulty in applying them, provided that familiarity with their principles be acquired, which is necessary.

4. In order that a practical knowledge of these rules be acquired, and that the judgment be improved in discriminating the difference in inflections, it is particularly recommended that the exercise of marking the different inflections, which the utterance of various passages may require, be adopted by the reader,—referring, at the same time, to the several Rules for such notation. For this purpose portions of the reading lessons may be selected. It can not be too earnestly urged on all who are desirous of becoming familiar with the prin- ' ciples of inflection, to adopt this, or some similar practice. It will be found not only a pleasing exercise, but likewise the most direct means of applying, practically, what is otherwise learned only in theory.

« AnteriorContinuar »