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2. O, I shall never, never hear her voice;
Spring time shall come, the isles rejoice;
1. Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.
2. And I saw a great white throne, and Him who sat upon the throne, before whose face the earth and the heavens fled away.
3. How beauteous are their feet,
Who stand on Zion's hill;
And words of peace reveal.
Whose altar, earth, sea, skies,
All nature's incense rise.
1. The art of Reading consists in understanding and expressing thoughts, as discovered through the medium of artificial characters.
2. It is an important art, and may be a great accomplishment. Its utility is beyond computation, for the reason, that by it we obtain nine-tenths of all the knowledge we possess. In talking, the thought is first presented, and produces the word; but in reading the word comes first, and the thought must follow it. Therefore, reading is only talking from a book ; and if it be made more or less than this, it is unnatural and repulsive.
3. Good readers are not made by “minding the stops” and “inflections," as is often taugiit by books, and sometimes practised in the schools; but, on the contrary, this is a sure process of making mechanical readers.
4. The “stops” are to be mainly used as grammatical guides to the discovery of the sense; and the “inflections”
are to be treated as natural agents of thought and meaning. The true mission of the elocutionary teacher is, to guide the pupil to nature, and make him understand and apply it.
5. The well disciplined articulation; the cultivated power and melody of the voice; the sense understood, and talked right from the heart, are the sum and substance of good reading.
6. Two questions should be continually in the mind of the devoted teacher of the art :
1. Does the pupil discover the sense.
2. Does he talk it correctly and elegantly. The following useful and very comprehensive rules cover the whole ground of the art of reading. Let them be adopted by every teacher and pupil.
THE FIVE RULES OF READING.
1. Give good Articulation.
RULE FOR READING POETRY.
Read it as though it were Prose, endeavoring to avoid the rhyme and measure.
ATTITUDE AND POSTURE FOR READING.
1. Standing erect is the most favorable, as well as the most manly and graceful attitude for the reader. Let the pupil stand evenly upon each foot, both touching, as it were, a right line or mark, letting the right foot toe out, the heels being separated about three inches.
2. Take the book in the left hand, holding it open with the thumb and little finger; let the elbow rest easily against the left side, and bring the book directly in front of the chest;
; hold the head erect, and raise your book just so high as not to conceal the audience from your view, nor your face from them; then, draw a full breath, open your mouth, and read “ with the spirit and the understanding also."
3. Ease of utterance, as well as gracefulness, is involved in these directions.
DIRECTIONS FOR EXERCISE IN READING.
1. “ To be able to read well, is a valuable accomplishment. The art does not consist in giving rapid utterance to words and sentences, as they occur on the printed page, but in expressing them with that distinctness, variety, and force, best calculated to convey the sentiments of the writer to the understanding of the hearer. A good reader expresses, both in the tones of his voice and manner of delivery, all the feeling, zeal, and pathos which the sentiment and circumstances are adapted to inspire. Skill in the management of the voice is as requisite in reading as in singing."
2. Let the teacher place the Five Rules for Reading on his blackboard; then let him read the above paragraph five several times, with his attention particularly fixed, first, upon good articulation ; second, upon correct pronunciation; third, upon the sense ; fourth, upon reading it like talking ; fifth, upon earnestness of expression. Then let him give it the perfection of expression, by combining, in the reading, all the rules and characteristics applicable to this paragraph and style of compo. sition. The pupils should imitate the teacher in this exercise, sentence after sentence, in concert, preparatory to the indepen. dent reading of the same. Then, let each pupil read the example separately, under the kind and searching criticism of the instructor. This exercise, if properly conducted, will not only afford pleasure, but produce great improvement. The author cannot too strongly recommend this manner of teaching reading, which he has fully and happily tested by experience. Teacher's motto-NoT HOW MUCH, BUT HOW WELL.
1. This signifies the manner of standing in vocal delivery.
2. It is natural language, that indicates qualities of the mind or certain stages of improvement in speaking. It is an exter- . nal manifestation of ease, gracefulness, and confidence; or it tels strongly of the want of them. A primary matter of attention, in every reader or speaker, should be a proper attitude.
3. Let the pupil place his feet as directed for the attitude of reading, bearing his weight evenly on each foot, keeping the lower limbs straight, and the whole body erect and easy.
4. No pupil should ever be allowed to commence reading or speaking, until he has placed himself in a graceful and easy posture.
1. Gesture includes the various motions proper to be used in speaking.
2. It is very effective natural language. Graceful and appropriate postures and gestures have great significance and power. Roscius could make them as effective as words. For every passion and emotion of the soul Nature has its appropriate gesture; he, therefore, who would effectively impress others with his own thoughts and emotions, must carefully study and apply this branch of the speaker's art.
3. The body should be held erect and easy, or moved in curved lines, as the impulse of thought and emotion may dictate. The principal gestures are to be made with the right arm ; or, when both arms are used, the motions should be exactly in unison. In gesture, the arms should reach out and off, freely moving in curved lines, making the shoulder, and not the elbow, the center of motion.
3. The left arm may be used alone, in pointing out location at the left of the speaker, or in abstract ideas that lead the mind in that direction. All gestures, indicative of graceful, beautiful, dignified, or magnificent thought, should describe curved lines. Hogarth says the curve is the most beautiful line in nature, and observation confirms the truthfulness of the assertion.
4. That gesture may not appear studied, mechanical, and ungraceful, the position and movement of the body, the limbs, and, indeed, the whole deportment, must be disciplined by elocutionary science, and then the well-regulated machinery of the body left to be moved spontaneously, by the master-spirit of speech-emotion.
5. The following are a few hints from the natural language of gesture: