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Richard Green Parker.

Exercises in rhetorical reading : with a series of introductory lessons, particularly designed to familiarize readers with the pauses and other marks in general use, and lead them to the practice of modulation and inflection of the voice online

. (page 22 of 38)
Online LibraryRichard Green ParkerExercises in rhetorical reading : with a series of introductory lessons, particularly designed to familiarize readers with the pauses and other marks in general use, and lead them to the practice of modulation and inflection of the voice → online text (page 22 of 38)
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and walked out of the study.

Despite his entreaty that they would not think of stir-
ring, Doctor Blimber, Mrs. Blimber, and Miss Blimber all
pressed forward to attend him to the hall ; and thus Mrs.

25 Pipchin got into a state of entanglement with Miss Blim-
ber and the Doctor, and was crowded out of the study
before she could clutch Florence. To which happy acci-
dent Paul stood afterwards indebted for the dear remem-
brance, that Florence ran back to throw her arms round

30 his neck, and that hers was the last face in the doorway :
turned towards him with a smile of encouragement the
brighter for the tears through which it beamed.

It made his childish bosom heave and swell when it
was gone, and sent the globes, the books, blind Homer, and

35 Minerva, swimming round the room. But they stopped,
all of a sudden ; and then he heard the loud clock in the
hall still gravely inquiring, " how, is, my, lit, tie, friend,
how, is, my, lit, tie, friend," as it had done before. He
sat, with folded hands, upon his pedestal, silently listening.

40 But he might have answered, " weary, weary ! very lone-
ly, very sad." And there, with an aching void in his
young heart, and all outside so cold, and bare, and strange,
Paul sat as if he had taken life unfurnished, and the up-
holsterer were never coming.



EX. XXXVII.] RHETORICAL READING. 251

EXERCISE XXXVn.

bame Subject, continued. — The Dinner Hour.

Doctor Blimber was already in his place in the dining-
room, at the top of the table, with Miss Blimber and Mrs.
Blimber on either side oT him. Mr. Feeder, in a black
coat, was at the bottom. Paul's chair was next to Miss

5 Blimber; but it being found, when he sat in it, that his
eyebrows were not much above the level of the table-cloth,
some books were brought in from the Doctor's study, on
which he was elevated, and on which he always sat from
that time — carrying them in and out himself on after

10 occasions, like a little elephant and castle.

Grace having been said by the Doctor, dinner began.
There was some nice soup ; also roast meat, boiled meat,
vegetables, pie, and cheese. Every young gentleman had
a massive silver fork, and a napkin ; and all the arrange-

15 ments were stately and handsome. In particular, there
was a butler in a blue coat and bright buttons, who gave
quite a winy flavor to the table beer ; he poured it out so
superbly.

Nobody spoke, unless spoken to, except Dr. Blimber,

20 Mrs. Blimber, and Miss Blimber, who conversed occasion-
ally. Whenever a young gentleman was not actually
engaged with his knife and fork or spoon, his eye, with
an irresistible attraction, sought the eye of Dr. Blimber,
Mrs. Blimber, or Miss Blimber, and modestly rested there.

25 Toots appeared to be the only exception to this rule. He
sat next Mr. Feeder on Paul's side of the table, and fre-
quently looked behind and before the intervening boys to
catch a glimpse of Paul.

Only once during dinner was there any conversation

30 that included the young gentlemen. It happened at the
epoch of the cheese, when the Doctor, having taken a
glass of port wine, and hemmed twice or thrice, said :

"It is remarkable, Mr. Feeder, that the Romans — "
At the mention of this terrible people, their implacable

35 enemies, every young gentleman fastened his gaze upon
the Doctor, with an assumption of the deepest interest.
One of the number, who happened to be drinking, and who
caught the Doctor's eye glaring at him through the side
of his tumbler, left off so hastily that he was convulsed

40 for some moments, and in the sequel ruined Dr. Blimber's
point.



252 Parker's exercises in [ex. xxrvn.

" It is remarkable, Mr. Feeder," said the Doctor, begin-
ning again slowly, " that the Romans, in those gorgeous
and profuse entertainments of which we read in the days
of the emperors, when luxury had attained a height un-

5 known before or since, and when whole provinces were
ravaged to supply the splendid means of one imperial
banquet — " Here the offender, who had been swelling
and straining, and waiting in vain for a full stop, broke
out violently.

10 " Johnson," said Mr. Feeder, in a low, reproachful voice,
" take some water." The Doctor, looking very stern,
made a pause until the water was brought, and then re-
sumed : — " And when, Mr. Feeder — " But Mr. Feeder,
who saw that Johnson must break out again, and who

15 knew that the Doctor would never come to a period be-
fore the young gentlemen until he had finished all he
meant to say, could n't keep his eyes oflT Johnson; and
thus was caught in the fact of not looking at the Doctor,
who consequently stopped.

20 " I beg your pardon, sir," said Mr. Feeder, reddening.
" I beg your pardon. Doctor Blimber." — " And when,"
said the Doctor, raising his voice, " when, sir, as we read,
and have no reason to doubt — incredible as it may ap-
pear to the vulgar of our time — the brother of Vitellius

25 prepared for him a feast, in which were served, of fish,
two thousand dishes — " — " Take some water, Johnson —
dishes, sir," said Mr. Feeder. — " Of various sorts of fowl,
five thousand dishes," — " Or try a crust of bread," said
Mr. Feeder. —

30 " And one dish," pursued Doctor Blimber, raising his
voice still higher, as he looked all round the table, " called,
from its enormous dimensions, the Shield of Minerva,
and made, among other costly ingredients, of the brains
of pheasants — " — " Ow, ow, ow!" (from Johnson.) —

35 " Woodcocks," — " Ow, ow, ow ! " — " The sounds of the

fish called scari," — "You'll burst some vessel in your

head," said Mr. Feeder. " You had better let it come." —

" And the spawn of the lamprey, brought from the

Carpathian Sea," pursued the Doctor, in his severest voice ;

40 "when we read of costly entertainments such as these,
and still remember that we have a Titus," — " What would
be your mother's feelings if you died of apoplexy ? " said
Mr. Feeder. — "A Domitian," — " And you 're blue, you
know," said Mr. Feeder. — "A Nero, a Tiberius, a Cali-



EX. XXXVn.] RHETORICAL READING. 253

gula, a Helio^balus, and many more," pursued the Doc-
tor; "it is, Mr. Feeder — if you are doing me the honor
to attend — remarkable ; very remarkable, sir — "

But Johnson, unable to suppress it any longer, burst
5 at that moment into such an overwhelming fit of cough-
ing, that, although both his immediate neighbors thumped
him on the back, and Mr. Feeder himself held a glass of
water to his lips, and the butler walked him up and down
several times between his o\vn chair and the sideboard,
10 like a sentry, it was full five minutes before he was mod-
erately composed. Then there was a profound silence.

" Gentlemen" said Doctor Blimber, " rise for grace I
Cornelia, lift Dombey down," — nothing of whom but his
scalp was accordingly seen above the table-cloth. " John-
15 son will repeat to me to-morrow morning, before breakfast,
without book, and from the Greek Testament, the first
epistle of Saint Paul to the Ephesians. We will resume
our studies, Mr. Feeder, in half an hour."

The young gentlemen bowed and withdrew. Mr. Feed-
20 er did likewise. During the half hour, the young gentle-
men, broken into pairs, loitered arm-in-arm up and down
a small piece of ground behind the house, or endeavored
to kindle a spark of animation in the breast of Briggs.
But nothing happened so vulgar as play. Punctually at
25 the appointed time, the gong was sounded, and the studies,
under the joint auspices of Doctor Blimber and Mr. Feed-
er, were resumed.

As the Olympic game of lounging up and down had
been cut shorter than usual that day, on Johnson's ac-
)0 count, they all went out for a walk before tea. Even
Briggs (though he had n't begun yet) partook of this dis-
sipation ; in the enjoyment of which he looked over the
cliff two or three times darkly. Doctor Blimber accom-
panied them ; and Paul had the honor of being taken in
35 tow by the Doctor himself; a distinguished state of things,
in which he looked very little and feeble.

Tea was served in a style no less polite than the dinner ;
and after tea, the young gentlemen, rising and bowing as
before, withdrew to fetch up the unfinished tasks of that day,
40 or to get up the already looming tasks of to-morrow. In the
mean time Mr. Feeder withdrew to his own room ; and Paul
sat in a corner, wondering whether Florence was thinking
of him, and what they were all about at Mrs. Pipchin's.

At eight o'clock or so, the gong sounded again for
22



254 Parker's exercises in [ex. xxxix.

prayers in the dining-room, where the butler afterwards
presided over a side table, on which bread and cheese and
beer were spread for such young gentlemen as desired to
partake of those refreshments. The ceremonies concluded
5 by the Doctor's saying, " Gentlemen, w^e will resume our
studies at seven to-morrow ; " and then, for the first time,
Paul saw Cornelia Blimber's eye, and saw that it was upon
him. When the Doctor had said these words, "Gentle-
men, we will resume our studies at seven to-morrow," the
10 pupils bowed again and went to bed. — Dickens.



EXERCISE XXXVIII.

Oratm- Puff.

Mr. Orator Puff had two tones in his voice.
The one squeaking thus, and the other down so ;
In each sentence he uttered he gave you your choice,
For one half was B alt. and the rest G below.
15 Oh ! oh ! orator Puff,

One voice for one orator 's surely enough.
But he still talked away, spite of coughs and of frowns.
So distracting all ears with his ups and his downs,
That a wag once, on hearing the orator say,
20 " My voice is for war," asked him, which of them, pray?
Oh! oh! &c.
Reeling homewards, one evening, top heavy with gin.
And rehearsing his speech on the weight of the crown.
He tripped near a saw-pit, and tumbled right in,
25 " Sinking fund," the last words as his noddle came down.
Oh! oh! &c.
" Ah ! me," he exclaimed, in his he and she tones,
" Help me out — help me out — I have broken my bones ! "
" Help you out ! " said a Paddy who passed, " what a bother !
30 Why, there 's two of you there ; can't vou help one another ? "
Oh ! oh ! &c. ' T. Moore.



EXERCISE XXXIX.

Soliloquy of Dick the Apprentice.

Thus far we run before the wind. — An apothecary ! —
Make an apothecary of me ! — What ! cramp my genius



EX. XL.J RHETORICAL READING. 255

over a pestle and mortar ! or mew me up in a shop, with
an alligator stuffed, and a beggarly account of empty-
boxes ! To be culling simples, and constantly adding to
the bills of mortality ! — No ! no ! It will be much better
5 to be pasted up in capitals, " The part of Romeo by a
young gentleman, who never appeared on any stage be-
fore ! " My ambition fires at the thought. But hold ;

mayn't I run some chance of failing in my attempt?
Hissed — pelted — laughed at — not admitted into the

10 green room ; — that will never do — down, busy devil,
down, down ! Try it again — loved by the women — envied
by the men — applauded by the pit, clapped by the galle-
ry, admired by the boxes. " Dear colonel, is n't he a
charming creature? — My Lord, don't you like him of all

15 things? — Makes love like an angel! — What an eye he
has! — Fine legs! — I shall certainly go to his benefit."
— Celestial sounds ! — And then I '11 get in with all the
painters, and have myself put up in every print shop —
in the character of Macbeth ! " This is a sorry sight."

20 {Stands an attitude^ In the character of Richard, " Give
me another horse ! Bind up my wounds ! " This will do
rarely. — And then I have a chance of getting well mar-
ried. — Oh glorious thought ! I will enjoy it, though but
in fancy. But what 's o'clock ? It must be almost nine.

25 I 'II away at once; this is club night — the spouters are
all met — little think they I 'm in town — they '11 be sur-
prised to see me — off I go ; and then for my assignation
with my master Gargle's daughter.

Limbs, do your office, and support me well ;
Bear me to her, then (ail me it you can.



EXERCISE XL.

Facetious History of John Gilpin.

John Gilpin was a citizen of credit and renown ;
A train-band captain eke was he, of famous London town. [been
John Gilpin's spouse said to her dear, — "Though wedded we have
These twice ten tedious years, yet we no holiday have seen.

35 '• To-morrow is our wedding-day, and we shall then repair
Unto the Bell at Edmonton, all in a chaise and pair.
My sister and my sister's child, myself and children three,
Will fill the chaise ; so you must ride on horseback after we."
He soon replied, — "I do admire of woman-kind but one;

40 And you are she, my dearest dear, therefore it shall be done.
I am a linen draper bold, as all the world doth know ;
And my good friend, Tom Calender, will lend his horse to go."



256 Parker's exercises in [ex. xl.

Quoth Mrs. Gilpin, — " That 's well said, and, for that wine is dear,
We will be furnished with our own, which is so bright and clear.
John Gilpin kissed his loving wife; o'erjoyed was he to find,
That, though on pleasure she was bent, she had a frugal mind.
5 The morning came, the chaise was brought, but yet was not allowed
To drive up to the door, lest all should say that she was proud.
So three doors off the chaise was staid, where they did all get in —
Six precious souls ; and all agog to dash through thick and thin.
Smack went the whip, round went the wheels, were never folks so
10 glad ;

The stones did rattle underneath, as if Cheapside were mad.
John Gilpin, at his horse's side, seized fast the flowing mane,
And up he got in haste to ride, but soon came down again.
For saddle-tree scarce reached had he, his journey to begin,
15 When, turning round his face, he saw three customers come in.
So down he came ; for loss of time, although it grieved him sore,
Yet loss of pence, full well he knew, would grieve him still much
more.
'T was long before the customers were suited to their mind,
20 When Betty screamed into his ears — " The wine is left behind ! "
''Goodlack!" quothhe; <' yet bring it me ; my leathern belt likewise,
In which I bear my trusty sword when I do exercise."

Now Mrs. Gilpin — careful soul — had two stone bottles found,
To hold the liquor which she loved, and keep it safe and sound.
25 Each bottle had two curling ears, through which the belt he drew;
He hung one bottle on each side, to make his balance true.
Then, over all, that he might be equipped from top to toe,
His long red cloak, well brushed and neat, he manfully did throw.
Now see him mounted once again upon his nimble steed,
30 Full slowly pacing o'er the stones, with caution and good heed.
But, finding soon a smoother road beneath his well-shod feet,
The snorting beast began to trot, which galled him in his seat.
So " fair and softly," John did cry, but John he cried in vain ;
The trot became a gallop soon, in spite of curb or rein.
35 So stooping down, as he needs must who cannot sit upright,

He grasped the mane with both his hands, and eke with all his might.
Away went Gilpin, neck or nought, away went hat and wig ;
He little dreamt, when he set out, of running such a rig.
The horse, who never had before been handled in this kind,
40 AflTrighted fled : and, as he flew, left all the world behind.

The wind did blow, the cloak did fly, like streamers long and gay ;
Till loop and button failing both, at last it flew away.

Then might all people well discern the bottles he had slung;
A bottle swinging at each side, as has been said or sung.
45 The dogs did bark, the children screamed, up flew the windows all ;
And every soul cried out, '< Well done! " as loud as they could bawl.
Away went Gilpin — who but he? his fame soon spread around —
" He carries weight ! — he rides a race ! — 't is for a thousand pound."
And still as fast as he drew near, 'twas wonderful to view,
00 How, in a trice, the turnpike men their gates wide open threw.
And now as he went bowing down his reeking head full low.
The bottles twain behind his back, were shattered at a blow-
Down ran the wine into the road, most piteous to be seen,
And made his horse's flanks to smoke, as he had basted been.



II. XL.] RHETORICAL READING. 257

But Still he seemed to carry weight, with leathern girdle braced;
For still the bottle necks were left, both dangling at his waist.
Thus all through merry Islington those gambols he did play,
And till he came unto the wash of Edmonton so gay.
5 And there he threw the wash about on both sides of the way,
Just like unto a trundling mop, or a wild goose at play.
At Edmonton, his loving wife, from the balcony, spied
Her tender husband, wondering much to see how he did ride.

" Stop, stop, John Gilpin, here 's the house !" they all at once did cry ;
10 " The dinner waits, and we are tired ! " Said Gilpin, — " So am I ! "
But ah, his horse was not a whit inclined to tarry there :
For why ? — his owner had a house full ten miles off, at Ware.

So like an arrow swift he flew, shot by an archer strong ;
So he did fly — which brings me to the middle of my song.
15 Away went Gilpin out of breath, and sore against his will,
Till at his friend's, Tom Calender's, his horse at last stood still.

Tom Calender, surprised to see his friend in such a trim,
Laid down his pipe, flew to the gate, and thus accosted him :
" What news, what news ? — the tidings tell ; make haste and tell
20 me all !

Say, why bare-headed are you come, or why you come at all?"

Now Gilpin had a pleasant wit, and loved a timely joke ;
And thus unto Tom Calender in merry strains he spoke : —
" I come because your horse would come ; and if I well forbode,
25 My hat and wig will soon be here, they are upon the road."

Tom Calender, right glad to find his friend in merry pin.
Returned him not a single word, but to the house went in. [hind,
Whence straight he came with hat and wig, — a wig that drooped be-
A hat not much the worse for wear ; each comely in its kind.
30 He held them up, and, in his turn, thus showed his ready wit : —
" My head is twice as big as yours, they therefore needs must fit.
But let me scrape the dirt away that hangs about your face ;
And stop and eat — for well you may be in a hungry case ! "

Said John — "It is my wedding-day ; and folks would gape and
35 stare,

If wife should dine at Edmonton, and I should dine at Ware."

Then speaking to his horse, he said, " I am in haste to dine ;

'T was for your pleasure you came here, you shall go back for mine."

Ah ! luckless word, and bootless boast, for which he paid full dear ;
40 For, while he spoke, a braying ass did sing most loud and clear :
Whereat his horse did snort, as if he heard a lion roar ;
And galloped off with all his might, as he had done before.

Away went Gilpin — and away went Gilpin's hat and wig;
He lost them sooner than at first : for why ? — they were too big.
45 Now Gilpin's wife, when she had seen her husband posting down
Into the country far away, she pulled out half a crown ;

And thus unto the youth she said that drove them to the Bell,
" This shall be yours, when you back bring my husband safe and well."
The youth did ride, and soon they met ; he tried to stop John's horse,
50 By seizing fast the flowing rein ; but only made things worse :

For, not performing what he meant, and gladly would have done;
He thereby frighted Gilpin's horse, and made him faster run.
Away went Gilpin — and away went post-boy at his heels;
The post-boy's horse right glad to miss the lumber of the wheels.
22*



25S Parker's exercises in [ex. xli.

Six gentlemen upon the road, thus seeing Gilpin fly,
With post-boy scampering in the rear, they raised the hue-and-cry.
" Stop thief! — stop thief! — a highwayman ! " not one of them was
mute,
5 So they, and all that passed that way, soon jomed in the pursuit.
But all the turnpike gates again flew open in short space j
The men slill thinking, as before, that Gilpin rode a race :
And so he did, and won it, too ; for he got first to town ;
Nor stopped till where he first got up he did again get down.
10 Now let us sing — « Long live the king, and Gilpin, long live he ! "
And when he next does ride abroad, may I be there to see !

Cowper.



EXERCISE XLI.

The Departure of the Gypsies froin Ellangowan.

It was in a hollow way, near the top of a steep ascent
upon the verge of the Ellangowan estate, that Mr. Bertram
met the gypsy procession. "Four or five men formed

15 the advanced, guard, wrapped in long, loose great coats,
that hid their tall, slender figures, as the large slouched
hats, drawn over their brows, concealed their wild features,
dark eyes, and swarthy faces. Two of them carried long
fowling-pieces, one wore a broad-sword without a sheath,

20 and all had the Highland dirk, though they did not wear
that weapon openly or ostentatiously.

Behind them followed the train of laden asses, and small
carts, or tumblers, as they were called in that country, on
which were laid the decrepid and the helpless, the aged

25 and infant part of the exiled community. The women in
their red cloaks and straw hats, the elder children with
bare heads and bare feet, and almost naked bodies, had the
immediate care of the little caravan. The road was nar-
row, running between two broken banks of sand, and Mr.

30 Bertram's servant rode forward, smacking his whip with an
air of authority, and motioning to their drivers to allow
free passage to their betters.

His signal was unattended to. He then called to the
men who lounged idly on before, " Stand to your beasts'

36 heads, and make room for the laird to pass." — " He shall
have his share of the road," answered a male gypsy from
under his slouched and large-brimmed hat, and without
raising his face, " and he shall have no more ; the high-
way is as free to our cuddies as to his geldings."

40 The tone of the man being sulky, and even menacing,



EX. XLI.] RHETORICAL READING. 259

Mr. Bertram thought it best to put his dignity into his
pocket, and pass by the procession quietly, upon such space
as they chose to leave for his accommodation, which was
narrow enough. To cover with an appearance of indif-
5 ference his feeling of the want of respect with which he
was treated, he addressed one of the men, as he passed
him, without any show of greeting, salute, or recognition,
— " Giles Baillie," he said, " have you heard that your
son Gabriel is well ? " (the question respecting the young

10 man who had been pressed.)

" If I had heard otherwise," said the old man, looking
up with a stern and menacing countenance, " you should
have heard it too." And he plodded his way, tarrying no
further question. When the laird had pressed onward

15 with difficulty among a crowd of familiar faces, — in which
he now only read hatred and contempt, but which had on
all former occasions marked his approach with the rever-
ence due to that of a superior being, — and had got clear of
. the throng, he could not help turning his horse and looking

20 back to mark the progress of the march. The group
would have been an excellent subject for the pencil of
Colotte. The van had already reached a small and
stunted thicket, which was at the bottom of the hill, and
which gradually hid the line of march until the last strag-

25 glers disappeared.

His sensations were bitter enough. The race, it is true,
which he had thus summarily dismissed from their ancient
place of refuge, was idle and vicious ; but had he endeav-
ored to render them otherwise ? They were not more

30 irregular characters now than they had been while they
were admitted to consider themselves as a sort of subor-
dinate dependants of his family; and ought the circum-
stance of his becoming a magistrate to have made at once
such a change in his conduct towards them ? Some means

35 of reformation ought at least to have been tried, before send-
ing seven families at once upon the wide world, and de-
priving them of a degree of countenance which withheld
them at least from atrocious guilt.

There was also a natural yearning of heart upon parting

40 with so many known and familiar faces ; and to this feel-
ing Godfrey Bertram was peculiarly accessible, from the
limited qualities of his mind, which sought its principal
amusements among the petty objects around him.

As he was about to turn his horse's head to pursue his



260 Parker's exercises in [ex. xli.

journey, Meg Merrilies, who had lagged behind the troops,
unexpectedly presented herself. She was standing upon one
of those high banks, which, as we before noticed, overhung



Online LibraryRichard Green ParkerExercises in rhetorical reading : with a series of introductory lessons, particularly designed to familiarize readers with the pauses and other marks in general use, and lead them to the practice of modulation and inflection of the voice → online text (page 22 of 38)