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To beard the lion in his den,
And hop'st thou hence unscathed to go?
Up drawbridge, groom! What, warder, ho!
When the elements of expression for each separate 'kind' are clearly understood and readily employed in practice, it will be comparatively easy to teach the natural expression of mixed sentiments.
When two different emotions are mixed, the most characteristic elements in the expression of each must be, as far as possible, preserved in the reading of the compound. If these elements are opposed to each other, as 'loud' and 'soft' force,' or 'fast' and 'slow' 'time,' there must be a compromise, to suit the mixture of ideas.
"O God, thou hast blessed me, I ask for no more.'
In this line we have the grave sentiment of reverence blended with the lively feeling of joy. Reverence alone demands low pitch and slow time,'-joy alone demands high pitch' and fast time.' The reverential joy, therefore, of the line quoted must be expressed by a natural compromise. The mixed emotions will be somewhat lower in pitch' and 'slower in time' than mere joy, and somewhat higher' and 'faster' than mere reverence. The degree in which either simple feeling must give way to the other, depends, of course, on the relative prominence of each.
In Rienzi's speech we find the opposite feelings of sorrow and joy blended in the lines which recall the beauty of his slain brother:
"He left my side, A summer bloom on his fair cheeks, Parting his innocent lips."
The most characteristic element in the expression of pathos, is the short' or 'minor slide.' This must be retained, then, in reading this "sad-joy." The most characteristic element in the expression of joy, is the lively, springing 'median stress;' this must in a great measure be retained therefore.
The 'time' and 'force' are opposite, and must be compromised, that is, a mean between the two opposites must be given. The proper reading will not be so loud or fast as mere joy, nor so slow and soft as mere sadness. In manly pathos, we have often what is bold or noble in feeling blended with tenderness and pathos. Sufficient loudness of force, and length of slide, and fulness of volume must he preserved in reading the compound, to express the manly or noble part, while the force is softened enough, and the slide shortened by a semitone, to express also the pathetic part.
"O my son Absalom! my son, my son Absalom
Would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!"
EXAMPLES, INCLUDING VARIED KINDS' AND MIXED
1. "I profess, sir, in my career hitherto, to have kept steadily in view the prosperity and honor of the whole country, and the preservation of our Federal Union.
'Bold' and 'animated.'
"It is to that Union we owe our safety at home and our consideration and dignity abroad. It is to that Union we are chiefly indebted for whatever makes us most proud of our country. Every year of its duration has teemed with fresh proofs of its utility and its blessings. It has been to us all a copious fountain of national, social, personal happiness.
"While the Union lasts, we have high, exciting, gratifying prospects spread out before us, for us and for our children.
Beyond that I seek not to penetrate the veil. God grant that, in my day, at least, that curtain may not rise! God grant that on my vision never may be opened what lies behind!
Grave and bold.'
The ideas are also 'harsh' and 'nega tive,' demanding abrupt stress' and rising slides.'
When my eyes shall be turned to behold for the last time the Sun in Heaven, may I not see him shining on the broken and dishonored fragments of a once glorious Union; on States dissevered, discordant, belligerent; on a land rent with civil feuds, or drenched, it may be, in fraternal blood!
"Let their last feeble and lingering glance, rather, behold the gorgeous Ensign of the Republic, (now known and honored throughout the earth,) still full high advanced, its arms and trophies streaming in their original lustre, not a stripe erased or polluted, nor a single star obscured,
'Bold,' negative,' and 'harsh,'
"bearing, for its motto, no such miserable interrogatory as What is all this worth?' nor those other words of delusion and folly, Liberty first, and Union afterwards,'
'Bold' and 'noble,' 'positive' and 'good,' demanding 'loud' and smooth' 'force,' 'full volume,' long falling slides,' and 'pure quality,'
"but everywhere, spread all over, in characters of living light, blazing on all its ample folds, as they float over the sea and over the land, and in every wind under the whole heavens, that other sentiment, dear to every true American heart. Liberty AND Union, now and forever, one and inseparable ! "
Unemotional' and 'grave.'
I come not here to talk. Ye know too well
The story of our thraldom. We are slaves!
'Bold' and noble,' negative.'
"Not such as swept along
By the full tide of power, the conqueror leads
'Sarcastic,' (contempt, scorn, and irony.) ideas, being harsh' and 'impure,' demand abrupt stress' and 'aspirated quality,' with the circumflex slides.'
But base, ignoble slaves, slaves to a horde
Strong in some hundred spearmen, - only great
He tossed not high his ready cap in air,
"Be we men,
And suffer such dishonor?
Men, and wash not
Such shames are common."
Full of all gentleness, of calmest hope,
Of sweet and quiet joy, — 'there was the look
'S-bdued' pathos and joy blended.
'I have known deeper wrongs. I, that speak to ye, I had a brother once, a gracious boy,
Brother, at once, and son!
"He left my side,
'Pathetic' and bold,' with abrupt' and 'tremulous' force.
'In one short hour
The pretty, harmless boy was slain! I saw
'Impassioned' and 'sarcastic.'
"Rouse, ye Romans! Rouse, ye slaves!
Yet, this is Rome
That sat on her seven hills, and from her throne
Why, in that elder day, to be a Roman
Good reading of Poetry demands, in addition to the elements of elocution which belong to ail emotional expression, as such, that just enough special attention be given to quantity and accent to fill out the time equably in each bar" of the poetical measure," and mark its rhythm perceptibly. In good