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at is ofteu too decidedly perverted in the syllables and terminations In
at, ar, ant, aole, an, ance, &c., as in the following words: fatal, particular, scholar, separate, arrogant, honorable, perseverance, preliminary, descendant, ordinance, &c.; in which the a should be slightly obscured, but not debased into the e in her or the u in but.
91. Words ending in ent, ens, ence, ess, &c., are often needlessly deprived of their just sound. We hear imminurni for imminent, vehemurnt for vehement, argumunifs for arguments, referurrace for reference, lazim'ss for laziness, goodniss for goodness, &c. The e in these words should have a slight sound of the e in ebb, end, &c. Do not say rebuZ or rcb6Ze instead of rebel, chick'n instead of chicken, sudd'n instead of sudden, nov'l instead of novel, trav'l instead of travel, slov'n instead of sloven, couns'l instead of counsel, mod'l instead of model, vess'l instead of vessel, nr&urnt instead of ardent, timbr'l instead of timbrel, &c.* In verbs and participles ending with en, the accent being on the previous syllable, the e is generally dropped. Say ris'n, tak'n, wak'n, drunk'n, sadd'n, grav'n, bright'n, op'n, chos'n, &c. Do not say 6'lieve, d'ny, yrdict, prmote, instead of believe, &c.
95!. There are many readers who, instead of giving the syllable er, when unaccented, its true sound, would have us suppose, by their mode of utterance, that it is spelled uk. They will, for instance, say powuA, povu/tty, govuAn, instead of power, poverty, govern, in which words the e has the sound it has in her. Do not obscure the e too much, or confound it with the i, in such words as society, variety, satiety, &c.
93. In syllables and terminations in in, U, ity, ility, ible, the i short should not be obscured more than is required for a free and graceful utterance. Say satin, not sat'n, Latin, not Lat'n ; province, not provence; mountain (mountin), not mount'n ; fountain (fountin), not fount'n; capacity, not capac-e-ty ; lenitive, not leneteve; pupil, not pup'l; council, not counc'l; pencil, not penc'l, &c. Do not convert the long i into e in such words as benign, oblige, &c.
94. Syllables and terminations in o, ow, and or, are badly articulated by many, who say pother for potaio, comprumise for compromise, tobaccernist for tobacconist, innervate for innovate, feller for fellow, winder for window, meller for mellow, hist'ry for history, hallerd for hallowed, meader for meadow, philoserpher for philosopher, colerny for colony, abrurgate for abrogate. &c. The o in such words as horizon, motion, Boston, &c., may be slightly obscured, but not dropped.
95. The unaccented u is often erroneously suppressed, or made to sound like e, in such words as particular, voluble, regular, singular, educate, &c. The full, diphthongal sr und of the u in mute should be given to
* In regard to such words us weapon, reason, treason, season, &c., although authority is in favor of the dropping of the Vowel before the n, it is a question w aether the slight sound of the o is not proper.
4he i»bove words, as well as to the following: nude, tune, tube, suit, assume, nature, mixture, moisture, vesture, vulture, geniture, structure, gesture, statute, institution, constitute, virtue, tutor, subdued, tuber, duty, &c.
96. There are some miscellaneous vulgarisms in the rendering of Vowel sounds, to which we will but briefly allude. Do not omit the long, round sound of o (as it occurs in home) in such words as boat, coat, &c. Do not 3ive to the a in scarce the sound of u in purse. Do not say tremendyoiti for tremendous, or coluume for column (pronounced kollum, the u short M in us, and not diphthongal as in use). Give to the diphthong oi its full sound in such words as noise, poise, point, &c., which are converted by some readers into nize, pize, pint, &c.
97. Do not trill the r in the wrong place. See rule, Paragraph 62. Do not give the sound of u to the a in Indian (properly pronounced Ind'yan). Do not give the sound of fie or fel to the Jul of awful, beautiful, and the like; of urn to the m in chasm, prism, patriotism, &c. Do not dismiss the letter d from such words as and, minds, hands, depends, sends, &c.
98. Do not say git for get, hoss for horse, idee for idea, thar for there, potry for poetry, jest for just, jine for join, fcetch for catch, kittle for kettle, staA for star, pint for point, fur for far, ben for been (correctly pronounced bin), doos for does (correctly pronounced duz), agin for again (correctly pronounced agen), ware for were (correctly pronounced wur), tharefore for therefore (correctly pronounced thurfore), air for are (correctly pronounced ar, the a as in fur).
99. It is a common fault with slovenly readers to dispense with the final g in words of more than one syllable, ending in ing. Such readers tell us of their goin' to meetin', siarliif early in the mornin', seein' nobody cowin', &c.; giving us to infer that they either have a bad cold in the head or have been but indifferently attentive to their elocutionary studies. Always avoid this vulgarism, whether in conversation or in reading aloud.
100- Where Consonants precede or follow the letter s, care should be taken to avoid the too frequent practice of improperly dropping tht sound of one letter or more. For example, in the line, — "And thou exisi'a; and strip's* as duty prompts," — the sound of the italicized con sonants* is often imperfectly rendered. So we hear acts incorrectly pro nounced ax ; facts, fax; retlec/s, reflex; expeefs, expex, &c.
101. Great liberties are often token with the letter r. There are speakers who say bust for burst, fust for first, dust for durst, &c. We also hear Cubar instead of Cuba, lamr instead of law, wawr, instead of war, puwtial instead of partial, Larrence instead of Laurence, stou,m instead of storm, mawn instead of morn, cswn instead of corn. The vibrant Bound of the r should not be muffled in such words as rural, rugged, trophy, &c. ; nor should the r be trilled in care, margin, &c.
102 The sound of the A in syllables commencing with shr should be
heeded : as in the line, " He sArilly sArieking sArank from sAriving him." In these and similar words the A is often shorn of its due force, and, by some bad speakers, is entirely suppressed. To the preservation of its aspirate sound in such words as wAat, wAale, wAither, wAen, &c., particular attention should be given.
103. A thorough and well-defined articulation will leave a hearer in no doubt as to which word is meant in articulating the following : When, wen ; whether, weather ; what, wot ; wheel, weal; where, wear; whist, wist; while, wile ; whet, wet ; whey, way; which, witch ; whig, wig; whin, win ; whine, wine ; whirled, world ; whit, wit; whither, wither; white, wight ; wheeled, wield.
Questions. — 89. Of what must an articulation consist? 90. Name instances in which words ending in at, an, ance, fee, are badly articulated. 91. Words ending in ent, en*, enx, &c. 92. In er. 93. Iu in, Uy, ibly, to. 94. In o, or, ow, &c. 95. In what class of words ought u to have its long, diphthongal sound? 96. How do you pronounce such words as b-o-a-l, s-o-a-p, c-o-i-t, kc.i 97. Pronounce a-w-f-u-l, tic. 98. G-e-t, c-o-t-c-b, b-e-e-n, d-o-e-.l, a-r-e, &c. 99. What is said of the termination in ing 7 100. Pronounce o-c-f-a, r-e-f-f-e-c-t-s, &c. 101. Pronounce b-u<r-x-t l-a-ui, c-o-r-n, &c. 102. What is said of the omission of the aspirate? 103. Repeat some words that are often confounded by bad readers through the omission of the h in pronouncing.
ON EXEUCISES IN ARTICULATION.
104. The voice should be thoroughly exercised in the Elementary Bounds given in the Table under Paragraph 20. Beginning with the Vowel Sounds, let the different sounds of a in father, fat, fate, fall, be detached from the words in which they occur, and distinctly emitted with a quick, clean, percussive utterance, requiring as slight an expenditure as possible of breath. Proceed in the same way to practise on the other Vowel sounds, till you can deliver them with nicety and accuracy, separately as well as in combination with Consonants.
105. A good succeeding exercise is to combine the Elementary Vowel sounds with the possible Elementary Consonant sounds, in their order, sis in the Table mentioned above ; thus (the a as in father) : ha, ma, na, la, ra, pa, ba,fa, va, lha. (the ih hard, as in thin), tha (the th soft, as in (Aine), la, da, fat, ga (the g as in frun), sa, za, sha, za (the z as in aiure). Then make the same Consonant combinations with the short a in fut, the long a in fate, the broad a in fall, the long e in mete, and the other Vowel sounds, simple and compound, according to their order in the Table.
106. As a next exercise, the Vowel sound may be made to precede the Consonant, and such combinations as the following may afford a fitting practice for the voice; thus (the a throughout as in father) : ah, ang, am, an, al, ar, ap, ab, of, av, ath (the th hard as in thin), ath (the th soft as in iAine), at, ad, ok, ag (the g as in gnu), ash, az, &c. Then place in similar juxtaposition with Consonants the other Elementary Vowel sounds, simple and compound, the a in fat, the e in met, the u in mute, &c., and continue the practice. These combinations may be easily written out on a slate, and much benefit derived from exercising the yoioa on them, till a clear and accurate articulation of all the Vowel sounds is attained.
107. In what we say of Consonants we allude to their actual sounds, and not to the arbitrary names given to them in the Alphabet There are many difficult Consonant combinations in the English language, to the proper utterance of which careful practice is essential. Several of the Consonants, as they are heard at the beginning or at the end of a word, can be enunciated independently, although the aid of a Vowel sound may at first seem indispensable. The student can test this, by suddenly suspending the voice before it reaches the Vowel in such combinations as b'a, d'a, &c. ; or by prolonging the Consonant Sound after the Vowel in ab— 6; eb—b; ib—b; ad—d; ed—d; id—d, &c. ; or before, as in b—be, d—de; g—ge, &c.
108. "In taking some of the mute consonants (p, b,f, v, t, d, th, k, g, s, z, sh, zh)," says Professor Latham, "and pronouncing them as independently of any Vowel as it is possible to do, we shall succeed in making on imperfect sound. Now, if the mute consouant so taken and uttered be one of the following, p,f, t, th (as in thin), k, s, or sh, the sound will be that of a whisper. The sound of p', V (such as it is), is that of a man speaking under the natural pitch of his voice, and at a whisper.
109. "But if the mute consonant so taken and uttered be any one of the following, b, v, d, th (as in thine), g, z, or zh, the sound will be that of a man speaking at the natural pitch of his voice, and with a certain degree of loudness and clearness.'' After experimenting upon the independent consonant elements thus indicated,— carefully distinguishing their alphabetical names from their actual sounds,— the student may proceed to practise his voice upon the combinations which they form.
110. The following Exercises contain nearly all the difficult consonant combinations that can occur in English speech. By delivering the words of each paragraph according to the punctuation, at first deliberately, and then more rapidly, as practice makes perfect, they will be found to serve as exercises in respiration as well as in articulation. In elocution it is important to acquire the power of keeping the lungs well filled by frequent and imperceptible inspirations.
HI. To gain this power, the exercise is recommended of prolonging the simple Vowel sounds musically to the full extent of expiratory power; silently replenishing the lungs, and recommencing the sound as expeditiously as possible. The same principle of exercise in connection with