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them in utterance. When, however, time is spoken of with reference to the utterance of a sentence or of a discourse, it is designated as slow or quick. The power to prolong the sound of syllables capable of quantity is of infinite importance to the effect of delivery, at the same time that it may be considered an elegant accomplishment in the speaker.
In music there are terms to express the nicest shades of quantity,-- from the demi-semiquaver to the semibreve. In elocution, the same phenomena exist, though we have no terms to express them. Every elementary sound however, or every syllable, is not equally capable of protraction. The short vowels, for example, cannot be prolonged like the long vowels; and when one of these standing alone is followed by a mute, the syllable is of the shortest kind. Thus ak, ap, at, ac-count, ap-point, at-tic. These are called Immutable syllables. If however, even in this situation, the short vowel is preceded by a tonic consonant, it is lengthened somewhat. Thus trap, des-truc-tion, gratitude. These, with syllables ending in b, d, g, or j, as also those ending in the aspirates, are called Mutable syllables. But if the syllable terminates with a long vowel, or with any tonic consonant except b, d, g, j, it may be prolonged, or shortened, to any desired extent; and hence they are called Indefinite syllables.
Quantity, although most obviously a distinct element, and deserving of this separate consideration, yet can never be represented free from combination with other elements. Hence we shall not present any exercises for practice under this head; but having now obtained a distinct idea of its nature, without delaying at this point to set forth its useful applications, shall pass to consider another of the attributes of good delivery.*
EVERY sound capable of prolongation, uttered without excitement, and in a natural manner, commences full and somewhat abrupt, and gradually decreases in fulness, till it becomes a mere breathing. Though this movement of the voice may be varied almost at pleasure, yet it has suggested the designation of the Radical movement as applicable to the first part of the sound; while the last part—the gradual decrease and final termination of the sound—has been called the Vanishing movement of the voice. And these designations continue the same, on whatever part of the sound the principal force of the voice is laid. This force of voice however is called STRESS ; and, when given at the opening of the sound, is called Radical stress, because given on the radical part of the vocal movement. The stress may be given so as to fall on the middle of the movement, when it is called the Median stress ; or it may fall at the vanish, that is, at the close of the sound, in which case it is called the Vanishing stress. A command of the several functions here described, is of the utmost importance to the speaker, since they each have their peculiar significancy, and since, with few exceptions, some one of them must enter into the pronunciation of every syllable forcibly uttered. We shall therefore propose some exercises which,
* The exercises proposed in the next section on Stress are equally well adapted to the improvement of the voice, as regards Quantity.
while they illustrate this subject, will give the learner the command of quantity, and lay a foundation for general improvement in all the vocal powers.
Radical Stress.--This is the kind of stress heard in the successive strokes upon the keys of a piano. It may also be given by the voice, on both the long and the short vowels; and is the only kind of stress which the Immutable syllables can take. The exercise, however, on sounds or syllables of short quantity, we shall reserve for another section; and here use only such as combine both stress and quantity. And we shall use, for this purpose, the simple elements, and the simplest combinations; because, though we might employ short words, we could scarcely find words embracing all the various elementary sounds, and thus the learner would lose the improvement in articulation, which we purpose to combine with the exercises of this and several of the following sections. Let the learner then refer to Table I; and striking each of the long vowels successively full at the opening, let the voice gradually die away till it becomes inaudible. This will exhibit the simplest modification of quantity; and may perhaps be represented with sufficient accuracy to the eye thus :
Let this exercise be continued till the learner has acquired perfect smoothness of voice, and the command of the equable movement which decreases gradually till it dies away in silence. When all the beauties of this vanishing movement are developed in execution, the ear is scarcely less delighted than in listening to the higher excellences of music. This function of the voice should then be carefully cultivated ; and to aid in its further training, and at the same time to cultivate other excellences of the art of speaking, we propose the following additional tables of exercise.
TABLE IV. COMBINATIONS OF THE TONIC CONSONANTS WITH THE LONG
bå då gå já lá må nå rå våwå på ză Tha zhả ba da ga ja la ma na ra va wa ya za THą zha bä dä gä jälä mä nãrã vä wä yä zã tha zhä bé de ge je le mě ně rë vė wé yé zẻ Trẻ nhỏ bi di gi ji li mi ni ri vi wi yizi Thi zhi bo do gó jó lo mó nó rö vỏ wỏ yỏ zÕ THỎ zhỏ bū du gů jú lů mů nū rū vů wû yů zů THÚ zhů bou dou gou jou lou mou nou rou vou wou you zou throu zhou boo doo goo joo loo moo noo roo voo woo yoo zoo TH00 'zhoo boy doy goy joy loy moy noy roy voy woy yoy zoy Troy zhoy
TABLE V. COMBINATIONS OF THE ATONICS WITH THE LONG VOWELS.
ka pa ka pa kä pä kē
pē ki pi kö
- fa ha
sä thà whā shå
sha cha sä thä whã
chã sē the whë she che si thi
whi shi chi so thö who sho cho sů thú whů shů chů sou thou
pou koo роо koy poy
whou shou chou SOO thoo
whoo shoo - choo soy thoy whoy shoy choy
* NOTE TO THE TEACHER.—This and the four following Tables are carried out so as to embrace all the possible combinations, for the purpose of detecting in the learner any defects of articulation, should such exist. On any combination which proves difficult of utterance, the practice should be continued till the sound is per. fectly familiar to the organs of speech. For the mere purpose of exercise in regard to stress or quantity, where no such difficulty of articulation presents itself, a few only of the most common and agreeable combinations may be used.
For practice on these Tables,
1. Let each of the consonant sounds be successively taken and fully uttered; but without prolonging them, let the voice abruptly burst upon the vowels, taken one by one, which are to be protracted as in the exercise recommended on Table 1.
2. Repeat the combinations in Table IV, protracting the sound of both the consonants and vowels.*
TABLE VI. COMBINATIONS OF THE LONG VOWELS WITH THE TONIC Conso
NANTS. äb ab äb eb ib ob
oub oob oyb ad ad äd éd id öd ůd oud ood oyd ág ag äg ég ig og ūg oug oog oyg aj aj äj ej ij öj ūj ouj boj
oyj al al äl ēl il ól ül
am äm ēm im om ûm oum oom oym an
än én in ön ûn oun oon oyn är ar är ēr ir ör ür our oor
av äv év iv Öv ÚV OUV OOV oyv az az äz ēz iz ÖZ
oyz ång ang ũng “ng' ing ông
oung oong oyng äти атн
äтн ёти ітн тн йти OUTH 00тн бути azh azh äzh ēzh izh Özh ůzh ouzh
oozh oyzh In the practice on the foregoing Table, let both the vowels and consonants be protracted as much as possible, consistently with a neat pronunciation.
* Though this exercise of the vocal organs is here recommended, the learner should be cautioned against habitually protracting the initial consonants in ordinary delivery. When thus prolonged, the enunciation becomes disagreeable and affected. This is sometimes heard in the pulpit; and Dr. Rush speaks of having heard this defect in the pronunciation of the following words of Macbeth, by a distinguished actor
Canst thou not m-inister to a m-ind diseased;