Page images


One upright dash sirnifies Moderate pause ; two a Longer pause: three the

Longest. To be or not to bel/ that is the question?|| Whether 't is nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune/ or to take arms against a sea of troubles, and, by opposing, end them? To die||—to sleep!//no more; -and, by a sleep, to say we end the heart-ache, and the thousand natural shocks that flesh is heir to !!!! 't is a consummation devoutly to be wished !// To die—to sleep-/// to sleep !—perchance to dream !!||—ay, there's the rub.— For in that sleep of death what dreams may come, when we have shuffled off this mortal coil// must give us pause !/—There's the respect that makes calamity of so long life :/ For who would bear the whips and scorns of time, the oppressor's wrong// the proud man's contumely// the pangs of despised lovell the law's delay// the insolence of office|| and the

spurns that patient merit of the unworthy takes, when he himself might his quietus make with a bare bodkin?/ Who would fardels bear, to groan and sweat under a weary life, but that the dread of something after death—that undiscovered country, from whose bourn no traveller returns-puzzles the will/l and makes us rather bear those ills we have than fly to others that we know not of/ Thus conscience does make cowards of us all; and thus the native hue of resolution is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought/ and enterprises of great pith and moment, with this regard, their currents turn awry, and lose the name of action.Shakspere.

(119.) MACBETH TO THE DAGGER VISION. Is this a dagger which I see before me the handle toward my hand?! Come, let me clutch thee: /// I have thee not; and yet I see thee still. Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible to feeling as to sight? // or art thou but a dagger of the mind; a false creation, proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain?||| I see thee yet, in form as palpable as this which now I draw?/ Thou marshal'st me the way that I was going; and such an instrument I was to use !/// Mine eyes are made the fools o' the other senses, or else worth all the rest:-I see thee still!! And on thy blade and dudgeon gouts of blood, which was not so before||! There's no such thing: it is the bloody business which informs thus to mine eyes/// Now o'er the one half world nature seems dead, and wicked drearns abuse the curtained sleep; now witchcraft celebrates pale Hecate's offerings/ and withered murder/ alarumed by his sentinel/ the wolf/ whose howl's his watch, thus with his stealthy pace, with Tarquin's ravishing strides, towards his design moves like a ghost// Thou sure and firm-set earth, hear not my steps which way they walk, for fear thy very stones prate of my where-about. And take the present horror from the time which now suits with it||| While I threat, he lives. words to the heat of deeds too cold breath gives.—1 gol and it is done; the bell invites me. Hear it not, Duncan! for it is a knell that summons thee to heaven or to hell !--Shakspere.

(120.) THE WOUNDED DEER. To-day, my lord of Amiens and myself did steal behind him, as he lay along under an oak/ whose antique root peeped out upon the brook that brawls along this wood/ to the which place a poor sequester'd stag/ that from the hunter's aim had ta’en a hurt, did come to languish/ and, indeed, my lord, the wretched animal heav'd forth such groans/ that their discharge did stretch his leathern coat almost to bursting/ and the big round tears coursed one another down his innocent nose in piteous chase, and thus the hairy fool/ much marked of the melancholy Jaques/ stood on the extremest verge of the swift brook, augmenting it with tears. — Jaques, of course, did promptly moralise this spectacle into a thousand biting similes. First/ for his weeping in the needless stream:// “Poor deer,” quoth he, “thou mak'st a testament as worldlings do/ giving thy sum of more to that which had too much”|| Then, being alone|| left and abandon’d of his velvet friends: “'Tis right/ quoth he; “thus misery doth part the flux of company|| Anon, a careless herd, full of the pasture, jumps along by him and never stays to greet him// Ay) quoth Jaques, “sweep on, you fat and greasy citizeng: ’tis just the fashion: wherefore do you look upon that poor and broken bankrupt there?"|| Thus most invectively he pierceth through the body of the country/ city/ court/ yea, and of this our life :/ swearing that we are mere usurpers/ tyrants, and what's worse :/// to fright the animals, and to kill them up in their assigu’d and native dwelling-place/l. And we did leave him in this contemplation, weeping/ and commenting upon the sobbing deer.- Shakspere.

TASTE AND EXPRESSION. (121.) Taste and expression in reading are shown on something of the same principle as that which indicates the same requisites in singing, namely, in modulating words and clauses according to their nature and character, and changing also the pitch of the voice to sympathize with the imagination. The rate of utterance, and force of tone, will be according to the various emotions under which the character is supposed to speak.

(122.) Sentences are defined as collective words making sense. The same sentence when merely written may be construed into several meanings. When uttered, the tone and pause will determine which meaning the utterer wishes to convey.

Read the following Exercises, changing the tone and rate of utterance as directed.

Moderate force.



Slow and soft.


There is a land, of every land the pride,

Beloved by Heaven o'er all the world beside;
Loud and quick. Where brighter suns dispense serener light,

And milder moons emparadise the night:
A land of beauty-virtue-valour-truth,
Time-tutored age, and love-exalted youth:
The wandering mariner-whose eye explores
The wealthiest isles, the most enchanting shores-
Views not a realm so bountiful and fair,
Nor breathes the spirit of a purer air:
In every clime, the magnet of his soul,

Touched by remembrance, trembles to that pole;
Quicker. For in this land of Heaven's peculiar grace,

The beritage of Nature's noblest race,
There is a spot of earth supremely blest,
A dearer, sweeter spot than all the rest:
Where man-creation's tyrant-casts aside
His sword and sceptre, pageantry and pride,
While in his softened looks benignly blend
The sire, the son, the husband, brother, friend;—
Here woman reigns—the mother, daughter, wife,

Strew with fresh flowers the narrow way of life;
Quick In the clear heaven of her delightful eye,









Medium force.


Medium force. Gradual increase


Soft and slow.

An angel-guard of loves and graces lie,
Around her knees domestic duties meet-
And fire-side pleasures gambol at her feet.
“Where shall that land, that spot of earth be found ?”
Art thou a man?—a patriot?—look around;
O thou shalt find, howe'er thy footsteps roam,
That land thy Country, and that spot thy Home.

-James Montgomery. (124.) FROM THE TRAGEDY OF "HAMLET.”

[Three speakers: The QUEEN, HAMLET, and the Ghost.] Hamlet. Now, mother, what's the matter? Queen. Hamlet, thou hast thy father much offended.

Gradually in Hamlet. Mother, you have my father much offended. Queen. Come, come! you answer with an idle tongue. Hamlet. Go, go, you question with a wicked tongue. Queen. Why, how now, Hamlet? Hamlet. What's the matter now? Queen. Have you forgot me?

Hamlet. No, by the rood, not so! you are the queen! your husband's brother's wife; and—would it were not so !--you are my mother.

Queen. Nay, then, I'll set those to you that can speak.

Hamlet. Come, come, and sit you down; you shall not Quick and low budge! you go not, till I set you up a glass where you inay see the inmost part of you !

Queen. What wilt thou do! thou wilt not murder me?

Hamlet. Leave wringing of your hands: Peace! sit you strong. down, and let me ring your heart; for so I shall, if it be made of penetrable stuff; if wicked custom have not brazed

that it is proof and bulwark against sense. Queen. What have I done that thou dar’st wag thy tongue in noise so rude against me?

Hamlet. Such an act, that blurs the grace and blush of modesty ; calls virtue, hypocrite; takes off the rose from Middle pitch. the fair forehead of an innocent love, and sets a blister there; makes marriage vows as false as dicers' oaths; O, Slow. such a deed as from the body of contraction plucks the very soul; and sweet religion makes a rhapsody of words ! Ah me! that act!

Queen. Ah me, what act, that roars so loud, and thunders in the index?


Slow and

it so,

Deep and strong

Deep and strong.




Soft and low.

Increase in

Hamlet. Look here, upon this picture, and on this! the counterfeit presentment of two brothers. See what a grace was seated on this brow?—Hyperion's curls; the front of Jove himself; an eye like Mars, to threaten and command, a station like the herald Mercury, new lighted on a heavenkissing hill; a combination, and a form, indeed, where every god did seem to set his seal, to give the world assurance

of a man: this was your husband.—Look you now, what Gradual in. follows:—Here is your husband, like a mildew'd ear,

blasting his wholesome brother. Have you eyes? Could you on this fair mountain leave to feed, and batten on this moor? Ha! have you eyes? you cannot call it love: for, at your age, the hey-day in the blood is tame! it's humble ! and waits upon the judgment! And what judgment would step from this to this? O shame! where is thy blush?

Queen. 0 Hamlet, speak no more! thou turn'st mine eyes into my very soul; and there I see such black and grainèd spots, as will not leave their tinct.

Hamlet. Nay, but to live in the rank sweat of an unforce with each righteous life

Queen. O, speak to me no more ! These words like daggers enter in mine ears; no more, sweet Hamlet !

Hamlet. A murderer and a villain : a slave, that is not twentieth part the tithe of your precedent lord :-a vice of kings: a cutpurse of the empire and the rule, that from a shelf the precious diadem stole, and put it in his pocket

Queen. No more!

Hamlet. A king of shreds and patches ! [Enter Ghost.] Change to soft Save me, and hover o'er me with your wings, you heavenly

guards !--What would your gracious figure?

Queen. Alas! he's mad.

Hamlet. Do you not come your tardy son to chide, that, lapsed in time and passion, let's go by the important acting of your dread command? O, say!

Ghost. Do not forget: this visitation is but to whet thy almost blunted purpose. But, look ! amazement on thy mother sits: O, step between her and her fighting soul; conceit in weakest bodies strongest works ;-speak to her, Hamlet.

Hamlet. How is it with you, lady? High and quick.

Queen. Alas, how is't with you? that you do bend your


Loud and quick.

and tremu. lous.

Slow, low with fear.

Low, strong, and slow.

« PreviousContinue »