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Of the Passions. 1

Should be extremely tedious, did I undertake to

touch even but curforily all that concerns this fubject, it being one of the most important in rhetoric. 'Tis known that the passions are, as it were, the foul of an oration : that 'tis from them it derives the impetuosity and vehemence, which bear down all before them; and that the orator by their means attains an abfolute empire over his auditors, and inspires them with whatever sentiments he pleases; sometimes by artfully taking advantage of the biass and favourable disposition of people's minds, but at other times in furmounting all their opposition by the victorious strength of the oration, and obliging them to surrender, as it were, in spite of themselves. Cæfar was not able to resist, when he heard Cicero's defence of Ligarius, though he was much upon his guard against his eloquence; being determined when he came out of his own house, not to pardon the latter.

I think it sufficient to refer youth to Cicero's * perorations, and to exhort them to make the application themselves of the excellent precepts left us by Cicero and Quintilian on this subject. The most important

"Tantam vim habet illa, quæ nos valeant ea quæ valere apud jure&tè à bono poeta dicta est, flexa- dicem vo'umus, afficiamurque annima atque omnium regina rerum o- tequam afficere conemur ... Uli ratii, ut non modo inclinantem miseratione opus erit, nobis ea de erigere, aut Itantem inclinare, fed quibus querimur, accidiffe credietiam adversantem & repugnan- mus, atque id animo noftro persuatem, ut imperator bonus ac fortis, deamus.

Nos illi fimus, quos gra. capere poffit. Lib. 2. de Orat. n. via, indigna, triftia passos quera. 187.

mur. Nec agamus rem quasi ali:* Conclusions of a speech. nam, sed affumamus parumper il

1 Summa circum movendos af- lum dolorem. Ita dicemus, quæ in fe&tus in hoc posita eft, ut movea- fimili noftro cafu dicturi efiemus. mur ipfi ... ..Primum eft ut apud Q. 1. 6. c. 3.



of all is, that in order to affect others, we must be affected ourselves; for which end, we must be deeply touched with the subject we treat of, be fully convinced of it,and be sensible of its whole truth and importance. We muft likewise form a strong representation to ourselves of the things we would make use of, to move the passions of the auditors, and describe them in a warm and lively manner; and this we shall do, if we are careful to study nature, and to take her always for our guide. For whence comes it that we see ignorant perfons express themselves with so much eloquence, in the first sallies of their grief or anger, except 'tis because those sensations are not studied or fietitious, but drawn from truth and nature itself.

An Athenian having entreated Demofthenes to plead for him against a citizen, from whom he pretended to have received a great affront; and as he was giving a relation of this pretended ill usage with a cold and sedate tone of voice, without passion or warmth: Not a word of this is true, says Demosthenes; you have not been ill treated, as you say you were. How! replies the other, raising his voice, and seeming in a great palfion: Have not I been ill treated, have not I been injured ? Upon hearing this tone of voice, Demosthenes perceived the truth, and undertook the cause.

w Cice-ro relates fomething like this of an orator named Callidius, against whom he pleaded: What! says he, if it were true that a design was formed against your life, as you pretend, would you speak of an attempt of this kind with such a languid careless air, which so far from moving the passions of your auditors, is fit only

? Quid enim aliud eft caufæ, ut tam leniter, tam ofcitanter. Tu lugentes utique in recenti dolore di- isthuc, M. Callidi, nih fingeres, fertiilimè quædam exclamare vide- fic ageres ? .... Ubi dolor? ubi antur, & ira nonnunquam indoctis ardor animi, qui etiam ex infant quoque eloquentiam faciat, quàm um ingeniis elicere voces & querequòd illis ineft vis mentis, & veri. las fulet? Nulla perturbatio animi, tas ipsa morum ? Ibid.

nuila corporis..

Itaque tantim u Plut in Vit. Demofth.

abfuit uc inflammares nostrus aniw Hoc ipfum posuit pro argumen- mos: foninum ifto loco vix tenebato, quòd ille tam fulutè egisset, mys. Bruc. n. 277, 278.


to lull them asleep? Is that the language of grief and indignation, which put lively and animated complaints into the mouths even of children? These two examples fhew that we must be moved ourselves, if we would move others, and feel the same emotions in our own breasts, with which we would inspire others. * Si vis me flere, dolendum eft primùm ipfi tibi.

The per-oration is the proper place for the paffions. It is there the orator displays all that is powerful, tender and moving in eloquence, according to the importance and nature of affairs, in order to complete his conquest over the hearts of the auditors, and to extort their consent.

Sometimes he does not stay till the conclusion, to raise the passions in this manner; but places them after every narrative, when the cause comprehends several of them; or after every part of the narrative, when it is to long; or, lastly, after the proof of every fact, and it is that we call amplification. The invectives against Verres furnish a great many examples of this kind.

The orator likewise moves the passions in the other parts of the oration, ? but more concisely, and with much

greater caution and reserve. a Omnes hos affectus-aliæ quoque partes recipiunt fed breviores. And this is what Anthony observed with such success in his fine oration for Norbanus : Ut tu illa omnia odio, invidia, misericordia miscuijti ! says Sulpicius, after he had run through and pointed out the whole series, and all the several parts of the oration.

“I wonder at those, says Quintilian, who pretend " that the passions are not to be raised in narration. If they

mean only by this, that we are not to dwell long upon them, as is practised in the per-oration, they are in the right; for there we must avoid pro

* Horat.

1. 4. C. 1.

a Ibid.
. Cic. lib. de Orat, n. 2034
c. Quint. 1. 4. 6. 26

y Quint. I. 6. c. 1.

Degustanda bæc miseratione) proæmio, non consumenda. Quint.


“ Jixity. lixity. But I do not see the reason why endeavours « should not be used to affect the judges while the ora

tor is informing them of the state of the case, since “ if we have then been able to inspire them with senti“ments of anger of compaffion, they will be much bet" ter difposed to receive and relish the proofs. ·Cicero C used this method in describing the punishment of a " Roman citizen, and in relating, in another place, " the cruelty of Vertes to Philodamus,” Quid? Phitodami casum nonne per totam expofitionem incendit invidia? (words that shew the whole narration is moving and pathetick.) “Indeed, fto wait till the end “ of the oration, in order to draw compassion for things « which we had related with dry eyes, is a little too < late.” A relation of grave and moving subjects would be very imperfect, if it were not lively and pasfionate.

& The passage relating to Gavius's punishment in the Jaft invective against Verres, would alone be sufficient to justify the rules we have now laid down.

+ After Cicero had prepared for the fact by a kind of exordium which is very vehement, land related the manner of, and the reason why, Gavius was carried to Merfina before * Verres, he comes to the description of the punishment. He insists at first upon these two circumstances, viz. whipping a Roman citizen in the middle of the Forum at Messina, and fixing him on a Cross. These circumstances are not related coldly or without paffion, but after a very lively and moving manner, Cædebatur virgis in medio foro Meffanæ civis Romanus, judices, cùm interea nullus gemitus, nulla vox alia illius miferi inter dolorem crepitumque plagarum audiebatur, nifi hæc: civis Romanus sum. Hac se commemoratione civitatis omnia verbera depulfurum, crucia

d Verr. 7. N. 171. e Verr. 3. n. 76.

fSerum est advocare his rebus af. fi Etum, quas fecurus narraveris.

iN. 159.

& N. 157, 171. - N. 157, 158. * N. 160, 161,


tumque à corpore deje&turum arbitrabatur. I. non modò hoc non perfecit, ut virgarum vim deprecaretur : fed, cùm imploraret sæpius ufurparetque nomen civitatis, crux, crux, inquam, infelici & ærumnofo, qui nunquam iftam poteftatem viderat, comparabatur.

This narrative, which is very pathetick in itself, is followed by the amplification, 'in which Cicero, with his usual eloquence, displays all the indignity of this ill usage of Gavius. O nomen dulce libertatis ! O jus eximium noftræ civitatis! &c.

" He relates one of the last circumstances of the execution, and reproaches Verres with having industriously made choice, for putting a Roman citizen to death, of a place, from whence the unhappy wretch might; as he was dying, fee Italy from the top of the gallows: Ut ille, qui se civem Romanum diceret, ex cruce-Italiam cernere, ac domum fuam profpicere poffet. This thought, which is very moving, though expresfed in two Lines, is immediately after enlarged and explained. Italia conspectus ad eam rem ab ifto electus est, ut ille in dolore cruciatuque moriens, perangufto freto divisa servitutis ac libertatis jura cognofceret; Italia autem alumnum fuum extremo fummoque fupplicio affectum

" The amplification follows of course, and it represents that circumstance in the most glaring light poffible. Facinus eft vinciri civem Romanum, &c.

• In fine, Cicero concludes all this passage with a figure equally bold and pathetic ; and by a laft reflection which affects all the citizens, and seems to be a kind of epilogue, by saying that if he should speak in a desart, the hardest rocks would be moved with the relation of so unworthy a treatment.

How much more reason then have the senators and judges to be affected, who, by their condition and stations, are the protectors of the laws and defenders of the Roman


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'N. 161,167.

N. 167.

» N. 169.
•N. 170, 171.


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