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 4 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 4 of 38)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

exerted in acts of oppression. Wisdom is tiie associate of
justice. It assists her to form eqiVal laws, to pursue right
measures, to correct power, to protect weakness, and to
unite individuals in a common interest and general welfare.
Heroes may kill tyrants, but it is wisdom and laws that pre-
vent tyranny and oppression.

[Sometimes a comma must be read like a question.'^

126.* Do you pretend to sit as high in school as Antho-
ny? Did you read as correctly, speak as loudly, or behave
as well as he ?

128. Do you pretend to sit as high on Olympus as Her-
cules ? Did you kill the Nemean lion, the Erymanthian
boar, the Lernean serpent, or Stymphalian birds 1

129. Are you the boy, of whose good conduct I have
heard so much ?

129. Art thou the Thracian robber, of whose exploits I
have heard so much?

130. Have you not misemployed your time, wasted your
talents, and passed your life in idleness and vice ?

130. Hast thou not set at defiance my authority, violated

* Some of the sentences which follow will be marked with the same number;
and such sentences are to be read in the same manner, and with the same in-
flection of the voice, &c.


the public peace, and passed thy life in injuring the persons
and properties of thy fellow-subjects 1

131. Who is that standing up in his place, with his hat
on, and his books under his arm 7

131. Whom are they ushering from the world, with all
this pageantry and long parade of death ?

132. Did he recite his lesson correctly, read audibly, and
appear to understand what he read?

132. Was his copy written neatly, his letters made hand-
somely, and did no blot appear on his book ?

132. Was his wealth stored fraud fully, the spoil of orphans
wronged, and widows who had none to plead their rights?

132. Have not you, too, gone about the earth like an evil
genius, blasting the fair fruits of peace and industry?

133. Is that a map which you have before you, with the
leaves blotted with ink ?

133. Is this a dagger, which I see before me, the handle
toward my hand ?

133. Will you say that your time is your own, and that
you have a right to employ it in the manner you please ?

[Sometimes the comma is to be read like a period, with
the falling inflection of the voice.]

134. The teacher directed him to take his seat, to study
his lesson, and to pass no more time in idleness.

134. It is said by unbelievers that religion is dull, unso-
cial, uncharitable, enthusiastic, a damper of human joy, a
morose intruder upon human pleasure.

134. Charles has brought his pen instead of his pencil,
his paper instead of his slate, his grammar instead of his
arithmetic. *

134. Perhaps you have mistaken sobriety for dulness,
equanimity for moroseness, disinclination to bad company
for aversion to society, abhorrence of vice for uncharitable-
ness, and piety for enthusiasm.

135. Henry was careless, thoughtless, heedless, and in-

135. This is partial, unjust, uncharitable, iniquitous.

135. The history of religion is ransacked for instances of
persecution, of austerities, and enthusiastic irregularities.

135. Religion is often supposed to be something which
must be practised apart from every thing else, a distinct pro-
fession, a peculiar occupation.


135. Dryden's mind has a larger range, and he collectg
his images and illustrations from a more extensive circum-
ference of science. Dryden knew more of man in his gen-
eral nature, and Pope in his local manners. The notions
of Dryden were formed by comprehensive speculation, and
those of Pope by minute attention.

135. Oh ! you might deem the spot the spacious cavern
of some virgin mine, deep in the womb of earth, where the
gems grow, and diamonds put forth radiant rods, and bud
with amethyst and topaz.

[Sometimes the comma is to be read like an exclamation.*'^

136. Oh how can you destroy those beautiful things which
your father procured for you I that beautiful top, those pol-
ished marbles, that excellent ball, and that beautifully painted
kite, oh how can you destroy them, and expect that he will
buy you new ones !

136. Oh how canst thou renounce the boundless store
of charms that Nature to her votary yields ! the warbling
woodland, the resounding shore, the pomp of groves, the
garniture of fields, all that the genial ray of morning gilds,
and all that echoes to the song of even, all that the moun-
tain's sheltering bosom shields, and all the dread magnifi-
cence of heaven, oh how canst thou renounce and hope to
be forgiven !

137. Oh winter ! ruler of the inverted year ! thy scattered
hair with sleetlike ashes filled, thy breath congealed upon
thy lips, thy cheeks fringed with a beard made white with
other snows than those of age, thy forehead wrapped in
clouds, a leafless branch thy sceptre, and thy throne a sliding
car, indebted to no wheels, but urged by storms along its
slippery way, I love thee, all unlovely as thou seemest, and
dreaded as thou art !

138. Lovely art thou, O Peace! and lovely are thy children,
and lovely are the prints of thy footsteps in the green valleys.

[Sometimes the comma and other marks are to be read
without any pause or inflection of the voice."]

138. You see, boys, what a fine school-room we have, in
which you can pursue your studies.

* The pupil will notice that some sentences which contain a question, to
which no answer is given or expected, are marked with an exclamation point
instead of an interrogation point ; but such sentences generally express sur-
prise or astonishment, ike. The sentences numbered 136 are of this kind
See Clark's English Grammar, Page 190.


138. You see, my son, this wide and large firmament
over our heads, where the sun and moon, and all the stars
appear in their turns.

138. Therefore, my child, fear, and worship, and love

138. He, that can read as well as you can, James, need
not be ashamed to read aloud.

138. He, that can make the multitude laugh and weep as
you can, Mr. Shakspeare, need not fear scholars.

139. I consider it my duty, at this time, to tell you, that
you have done something, of which you ought to be

139. I deem it my duty, on this occasion, to suggest, that
the land is not yet wholly free from the contamination of a
traffic, at which every feeling of humanity must revolt.

140. The Spaniards, while thus employed, were sur-
rounded by many of the natives, who gazed, in silent admi-
ration, upon actions which they could not comprehend, and
of which they did not foresee the consequences. The dress
of the Spaniards, the whiteness of their skins, their beards,
their arms, appeared strange and surprising.

141. Yet, fair as thou art, thou shunnest to glide, beau-
tiful stream! by the village side, but windest away from the
haunts of men, to silent valley and shaded glen.

142. But it is not for man, either solely or principally,
that night is made.

143. We imagine, that, in a world of our own creation,
there would always be a blessing in the air, and flowers and
fruits on the earth.

144. Share with you ! said his father — so the industrious
must lose his labor to feed the idle.

144. His brother, Moses, did not imitate his example.


[Sometimes the pause of a comma must be made where
there is no pause in your hook. Spaces are left in the foU
lowing sentences where the pause is proper. "^

145. James was very much delighted with the picture
which he saw.


145. The Europeans were hardly less amazed at the
scene now before them.

146. The inhabitants were entirely naked. Their
black hair, long and curled, floated upon their shoulders,
or was bound in tresses around their head.

147. Persons of reflection and sensibility contemplate
with interest the scenes of nature.

148. The succession and contrast of the seasons give
scope to that care and foresight, diligence and industry, which
are essential to the dignity and enjoyment of human be-

149. The eye is sweetly delayed on every object to
which it turns. It is grateful to perceive how widely,
yet chastely, nature hath mixed her colors and painted
her robe.

150. Winter compensates for the want of attractions
abroad by fireside delights and homefelt joys. In
all this interchange and variety we find reason to ac-
knowledge the wise and benevolent care of the God
of seasons.

[TTte pupil may read the following sentences ; hut before reading them,
he may tell after what word the pause should he made. The pause is not
printed in the sentences, hut it must be made when reading them. Jind
here it may he observed, that the comma is more frequently used to point
out the grammatical divisions of a sentence, than to indicate a rest or
cessation of the voice. Good reading depends much upon skill and judg-
ment in making those pauses which the sense of the sentence dictates, hut
which are not noted in the book; and the sooner the pupil is taught to
make them, with proper discrimination, the surer and the more rapid will
be his progress in the art of reading.^

151. While they were at their silent meal a horseman
came galloping to the door, and, with a loud voice, called
out that he had been sent express with a letter to Gilbert

152. The golden head that was wont to rise at that part
of the table was now wanting.

153. For even though absent from school I shall get the

L53. For even though dead I will control the trophies of
the capitol.

154. It is now two hundred years since attempts have
been made to civilize the North American savage.

155. Doing well has something more in it than the fulfil-
lintr of a duty.



156. You will expect me to say something of the lonely
records of the former races that inhabited this country.

157. There is no virtue without a characteristic beauty
to make it particularly loved by the good, and to make the
bad ashamed of their neglect of it.

158. A sacrifice was never yet offered to a principle, that
was not made up to us by self-approval, and the considera-
tion of what our degradation would have been had we done

159 The following story has been handed down by family
tradition for more than a century.

160. The succession and contrast of the seasons give
scope to that care and foresight, diligence and industry,
which are essential to the dignity and enjoyment of human
beings, whose happiness is connected with the exertion of
their faculties.

161. A lion of the largest size measures from eight to
nine feet from the muzzle to the origin of the tail, which
last is of itself about four feet long. The height of the
larger specimens is four or five feet.

162. The following anecdote will show with what obstinate
perseverance pack horses have been known to preserve the
line of their order.

163. Good morning to you, Charles I Whose book is that
which you have under your arm?

163. A benison upon thee, gentle huntsman ! Whose
towers are these that overlook the wood ?

164. The incidents of the last few days have been such
as will probably never again be witnessed by the people of
America, and such as were never before witnessed by any
nation under heaven.

165. To the memory of Andre his country has erected
the most magnificent monuments, and bestowed on his fam-
ily the highest honors and most liberal rewards. To the
memory of Hale not a stone has been erected, and the trav
eller asks in vain for the place of his long sleep.




The Semicolon is made by a comma placed under a period^
this 5

WJien you come to a semicolon^ you must generally make a
pause timce as long as ymc wmdd make at a comma.

Sometimes you must use the falling injlection of the voice
when you come to a semicolon^ and sometimes you must keep
your voice suspended, as you were directed in the ninth lesson.
Whatever may be the length of the pauses, let it be a total
CESSATION of the voice.

'When you come to a semicolon in this lesson^ you must
keep your voice suspended^ as you were directed in the ninth


166. That God whom you see me daily worship ; whom I
daily call upon to bless both you and me, and all mankind ;
whose wondrous acts are recorded in those Scriptures which
you constantly read ; that God who created the heaven and
the earth is your Father and Friend.

167. My son, as you have been used to look to me in all
your actions, and have been afraid to do any thing unless
you first knew my will ; so let it now be a rule of your life
to look up to God in all your actions.

168. If I have seen any perish for want of clothing, or
any poor without covering; if his loins have not blessed me,
and if he were not warmed with the fleece of my sheep ; if
I have lifted up my hand against the fatherless, when I savr
my help in the gate ; then let mine arm fall from my shoul
der blade, and mine arm be broken from the bone.

169. The stranger did not lodge in the street; but I
opened my doors to the traveller.

170. If my land cry against me, or the furrows thereof
complain ; if I have eaten the fruits thereof without money,
or have caused the owners thereof to lose their life ; let
thistles grow instead of wheat, and cockles instead of barley.

171. When the fair moon, refulgent lamp of night, o'er
heaven's clear azure spreads her sacred light ; when not a


breath disturbs the deep serene, and not a cloud o'ercasts the
solemn scene; around her throne the vivid planets roll, and
stars unnumbered gild the glowing pole ; o'er the dark trees
a yellower verdure shed, and tip with silver every mountain's
head; then shine the vales, the rocks in prospect rise, a flood
of glory bursts from all the skies ; the conscious swains, re-
joicing in the sight, eye the blue vault, and bless the useful

172. When the battle was ended, the stranger disappeared :
and no person knew whence he had come, nor whither he had

173. The relief was so timely, so sudden, so unexpected,
and so providential ; the appearance and the retreat of him
who furnished it were so unaccountable; his person was so
dignified and commanding; his resolution so superior, and
his interference so decisive, that the inhabitants believed him
to be an angel, sent by Heaven for their preservation.


Sometimes you must use the falling iriflection of the voice
when you come to a semicolon, as in the following


174. Let your dress be sober, clean, and modest; not to
set off the beauty of your person, but to declare the sobriety
of your mind ; that your outward garb may resemble the in-
ward plainness and simplicity of your heart.

175. In meat and drink, observe the rules of Christian
temperance and sobriety ; consider your body only as the
servant and minister of your soul ; and only so nourish it,
as it may best perform an humble and obedient service.

176. Condescend to all the weakness and infirmities of
your fellow-creatures; cover their frailties; love their excel-
lences; encourage their virtues; relieve their wants; rejoice
in their prosperity; compassionate their distress; receive their
friendship; overlook their unkindness; forgive their malice;
be a servant of servants; and condescend to do the lowest
offiaes for the lowest of mankind.


177. Struck with the sight of so fine a tree, he hastened
to his own, hoping to find as large a crop upon it; but, to his
great surprise, he saw scarcely any thing, except branches,
covered with moss, and a few yellow leaves.

178. In sleep's serene oblivion laid, I've safely passed the
silent night ; again I see the breaking shade, again behold
the morning light.

179. New-born, I bless the waking hour ; once more, with
awe, rejoice to be; my conscious soul resumes her power,
and soars, my guardian God, to thee.

180. That deeper shade shall break away; that deeper
sleep shall leave mine eyes; thy light shall give eternal
day ; thy love, the rapture of the skies.

181. In the sight of our law the African slave trader is a
pirate and a felon ; and in the sight of Heaven, an offender
far beyond the ordinary depth of human guilt.

182. Between Nose and Eyes a strange contest arose; the
spectacles set them unhappily wrong; the point in dispute
was, as all the world knows, to which the said spectacles
ought to belong.

183. What hope of liberty is there remaining, if whatever
is their pleasure, it is lawful for them to do; if what is lawful
for them to do, they are able to do ; if what they are able to
do, they dare do; if what they dare do, they really execute;
and if what they execute, is in no way offensive to you ?

184. Mercury, I won't go in the boat with that fellow. He
has murdered his countryman ; he has murdered his friend ;
I say I won't go in the boat with that fellow ; I will swim over
the river; I can swim like a duck.

185. It is not the use of the innocent amusements of life
which is dangerous, but the abuse of them; it is not when
they are occasionally, but when they are constantly pursued ;
when the love of amusement degenerates into a passion; and
when, from being an occasional indulgence, it becomes an
habitual desire.

186. The prevailing color of the body of a tiger is a deep
tawny, or orange yellow ; the face, throat, and lower part of
the belly are nearly white; and the whole is traversed by
numerous long black stripes.

187. The horse, next to the Hottentot, is the favorite prey
of the lion ; and the elephant and camel are both highly rel-
ished ; while the sheep, owing probably to its woolly fleece,
is seldom molested.

188. The lion, with his strong teeth, breaks large bones




with the greatest ease; and he often swallows their fragments
along with the flesh.

189. The horse is quick-sighted; he can see things in the
night which his rider cannot perceive; but when it is too
dark for his sight, his -sense of smelling is his guide.

190. In summer, horses in the country feed on grass, or on
grass and oats; in winter, they eat oats, corn, and hay. When
grazing in the pasture, they always choose the shortest grass,
because it is the sweetest ; and as they have cutting teeth in
both their jaws, they can eat very near the ground.


The semicolon is sometimes used for a question , and some-
times as an exclamation.


192. Hast thou not set at defiance my authority; violated
the public peace, and passed thy life in injuring the persons
and properties of thy fellow-subjects ?

193. Oh, it was impious ; it was unmanly ; it was poor and
pitiful !

194. Have not you too gone about the earth like an evil
genius; blasting the fair fruits of peace and industry; plun-
dering, ravaging, killing without law, without justice, merely
to gratify an insatiable lust for dominion ?

195. Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible to feeling as to
sight? Or art thou but a dagger of the mind ; a false crea-
tion, proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain?

196. Has Mercury struck thee with his enfeebling rod ;
or art thou ashamed to betray thy awkwardness? [This
sentence should be read as directed in Lesson 4.]

197. By such apologies shall man insult his Creator; and
shall he hope to flatter the ear of Omnipotence? Think you
that such excuses will gain new importance in their ascent
to the Majesty on high ; and will you trust the interests of
eternity in the hands of these superficial advocates?

198. And shall not the Christian blush to repine; the
Christian, from before whom the veil is removed ; to whose
eyes are revealed the glories of heaven ?


199. Why, for so many a year, has the poet and the philoso-
pher wandered amidst the fragments of Athens or of Rome;
and paused, with strange and kindling feelings, amidst their
broken columns, their mouldering temples, their deserted
plains? It is because their day of glory is passed ; it is be-
cause their name is obscured; their power is departed; their
influence is lost !

200. Where are they who taught these stones to grieve ;
where are the hands that hewed them ; and the hearts that
reared them?

201. Hope ye by these to avert oblivion's doom ; in grief
ambitious, and in ashes vain?

202. Can no support be oflfered ; can no source of confi-
dence be named?

203. Is this the man that made the earth to tremble ; that
shook the kingdoms; that made the world like a desert;
that destroyed the cities?

203. Falsely luxurious, will not man awake ; and, spring-
ing from the bed of sloth, enjoy the cool, the fragrant, and
the silent hour, to meditation due and sacred song?

204. But who shall speak before the king when he is trou-
bled ; and who shall boast of knowledge when he is distressed
by doubt ?

205. Who would in such a gloomy state remain longer
than nature craves ; when every muse and every blooming
pleasure wait without, to bless the wildly devious morning

206. Farewell ! May the smile of Him who resides in
the heaven of heavens be upon thee ; and against thy name,
in the volume of his will, may happiness be written !

207. What a glorious monument of human invention, that
has thus triumphed over wind and wave; has brought the
ends of the earth in communion ; has established an inter-
change of blessings, pouring into the sterile regions of the
north all the luxuries of the south; diffused the light of
knowledge and the charities of cultivated life ; and has thus
bound together those scattered portions of the human race,
between which, nature seems to have thrown an insurmount-
able barrier !

20S. Who that bears a human bosom, hath not often felt,
how dear are all those ties which bind our race in gentleness
together ; and how sweet their force, let fortune's wayward
Hand the while be kind or cruel?

209. If it was intended for us as well as you, why has not


the Great Spirit given it to us ; and not only to us, but why-
did he not give to our forefathers the knowledge of that book,
with the means of rightly understanding it ?



The Colon consists of two periods placed one above the other,
thus :

Sometimes the passage ending with a colon is to he read
with the voice suspended ; but it should generally be read
with the falling inflection of the voice. In this lesson the
falling inflection is required.

Be careful to let this pause be a total cessation of the
VOICE, — longer than that indicated by a comma, or by a semi-


210. The smile of gayety is often assumed while the heart
aches within : though folly may laugh, guilt will sting.

211. There is no mortal truly wise and restless at the same
time : wisdom is the repose of the mind.

212. Nature felt her inability to extricate herself from the
consequences of guilt: the gospel reveals the plan of Divine
interposition and aid.

213. Nature confessed some atonement to be necessary :
the gospel discovers that the atonement is made.

214. Law and order are forgotten : violence and rapine
are abroad : the golden cords of society are loosed.

215. The temples are profaned : the soldier's curse re-
sounds in the house of God : the marble pavement is tram-
pled by iron hoofs : horses neigh beside the altar.

216. Blue wreaths of smoke ascend through the trees,
and betray the half-hidden cottage: the eye contemplates
well-thatched ricks, and barns bursting with plenty : the
peasant laughs at the approach of winter.

217. The necessaries of life are few, and industry secures
them to every man: it is the elegancies of life that empty the


purse* the knick-knacks of fashion, the gratification of pride,
and the indulgence of luxury, make a man poor.

218. Your tree was as fruitful, and in as good order as
his : it bore as many blossoms, and grew in the same soil :
only it was not fostered with the same care. Edmund has
kept his tree clear of hurtful insects : you have suffered them
to eat up yours in its blossom.

219. My dear children, I give you these trees : you see
that they are in good condition. They will thrive as much
by your care as they will decline by your negligence : their
fruits will reward you in proportion to your labor.

220. But Abraham pressed him greatly : so he turned, and
they went into the tent: and Abraham baked unleavened
bread, and they did eat.

221. A bee among the flowers in spring is one of the
most cheerful objects that can be looked upon. Its life ap-
pears to be all enjoyment : so busy and so pleased : yet it is

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 4 of 38)