Imatges de pÓgina
PDF
EPUB

CONCISE PASSAGES,

EXEMPLIFYING CERTAIN PARTICULARS, ON THE PROPER EXPRESSION OF WHICH, THE MODULATION AND MANAGEMENT OF THE VOICE, IN READING AND SPEAKING, PRINCIPALLY DEPEND.

1-Examples of ANTITHESIS; or the Opposition of Words or

Sentences.

1. THE manner of speaking is as important as the matter.Chesterfield.

2. Cowards die many times; the valiant never taste of death but once.-Shakespeare.

3. Temperance, by fortifying the mind and body, leads to happiness; intemperance, by enervating the mind and body, ends general ly in misery. -Art of Thinking.

4. Title and ancestry render a good man more illustrious; but an ill one more contemptible. Vice is infamous, though in a prince; and virtue honourable, though in a peasant.-Spectator.

5. Almost every object that attracts our notice, has its bright and its dark side. He who habituates himself to look at the displeasing side, will sour his disposition, and consequently, impair his happiness; while he who constantly beholds it on the bright side, insensibly meliorates his temper, and, in consequence of it, improves his own happiness, and the happiness of all around him.-World.

6 A wise man endeavours to shine in himself; a fool to outshine others. The former is humbled by the sense of his own infirmities; the latter is lifted up by the discovery of those which he observes in others. The wise man considers what he wants; and the fool what he abounds in. The wise man is happy when he gains his own approbation; and the fool, when he recommends himself to the applause of those about him.-Spectator.

7. When opportunities of exercise are wanting, temperance may in a great measure supply its place. If exercise throws off all superfluities, temperance prevents them; if exercise clears the vessels, temperance neither satiates nor overstrains them ;-if exercise raises proper ferments in the humours, and promotes the circulation of the blood, temperance gives nature her full play, and enables her to exert herself in all her force and vigour; if exercise dissipates a growing distemper, temperance starves it.-Spectator.

8. I have always preferred cheerfulness to mirth. The latter I consider as an act, the former as a habit of the mind. Mirth is short and transient, cheerfulness fixed and permanent. Those are often raised into the greatest transports of mirth, who are subject to the greatest depressions of melancholy. On the contrary, cheerfulness, though it does not give the mind such an exquisite gladness, prevents as from falling into any depths of sorrow. Mirth is like a flash of

lightning, that breaks through a gloom of clouds and glitters for a moment; cheerfulness keeps a kind of daylight in the mind, and fills it with a steady and perpetual serenity.-Speciator.

9. At the same time that I think discretion the most useful talent a man can be master of, I look upon cunning to be the accomplishment of little, mean, ungenerous minds. Discretion points out the noblest ends to us, and pursues the most proper and laudable methods of attaining them; cunning has only private, selfish aims, and sticks at nothing which may make them succeed; discretion has large and extensive views, and, like a well formed eye, commands a whole horizon; cunning is a kind of short-sightedness, that discovers the minutest objects, which are near at hand, but it is not able to discern things at a distance.-Spectator.

10. Nothing is more amiable than true modesty, and nothing more contemptible than the false. The one guards virtue; the other betrays it. True modesty is ashamed to do any thing that is repugnant to the rules of right reason; false modesty is ashamed to do any thing that is opposite to the humour of the company. True modesty avoids every thing that is criminal; false modesty every thing that is unfashionable. The latter is only a general undetermined instinct; the former is that instinct, limited and circumscribed by the rules of prudence and religion.-Spectator.

11. How different is the view of past life, in the man who is grown old in knowledge and wisdom, from that of him who is grown old in ignorance and folly! The latter is like the owner of a barren country, that fills his eye with the prospect of naked hills and plains, which produces nothing either profitable or ornamental; the former beholds a beautiful and spacious landscape, divided into delightful gardens, green meadows, fruitful fields; and can scarce cast his eye on a single spot of his possessions, that is not covered with some beautiful plant or flower-Spectator.

12. As there is a worldly happiness, which God perceives to be no other than disguised misery; as there are worldly honours which, in his estimation, are reproach; so there is a worldly wisdom, which, in his sight, is foolishness. Of this worldly wisdom, the characters are given in the scriptures, and placed in contrast with those of the wis dum which is from above. The one is the wisdom of the crafty; the other, that of the upright: The one terminates in selfishness; the other in charity: The one, is full of strife, and bitter envying; the other, of mercy and good fruits.—Blair.

13. True honour, though it be a different principle from religion, is that which produces the same effects. The lines of action, though drawn from different parts, terminate in the same point. Religion embraces virtue, as it is enjoined by the laws of God; honour, as it is graceful and ornamental to human nature. The religious man fears, the man of honour scorns, to do an ill action. The latter considers vice as something that is beneath him; the former, as something that is offensive to the Divine Being; the one, as what is unbecoming; the other, as what is forbidden.-Guardian,

14. Where is the man that possesses, or indeed can be required to possess, greater abilities in war, than Pompey? One who has fought more pitched battles, than others have maintained personal disputes

Carried on more wars than others have acquired knowledge of by reading! Reduced more provinces than others have aspired to, even in thought! Whose youth was trained to the profession of arms, not by precepts derived from others, but by the highest offices of command! Not by personal mistakes in war, but by a train of important victories; not by a series of campaigns, but by a succession of triumphs.-Cicero.

;

15. Two principles in human nature reign,
Self-love to urge, and reason to restrain
Nor this a good, nor that a bad we call,
Each works its end-to move or govern all.-Pope.
16. In point of sermons, 'tis confess'd
Our English clergy make the best;
But this appears, we must confess,
Not from the pulpit, but the press.
They manage, with disjointed skill,
The matter well, the manner ill;
And, what seems paradox at first,
They make the best, and preach the worst.-Byram.
17. Know, Nature's children all divide her care;
The fur that warms the monarch warm'd a bear.
While man exclaims, " See all things for my use!"
'See man for mine!" replies a pamper'd goose:
And just as short of reason he must fall,
Who thinks all made for one, not one for all.-Pope.

18. O thou goddess,

Thou divine Nature! How thyself thou blazon'st
In these two princely boys! They are as gentle
As zephyrs blowing below the violet,
Not wagging his sweet head; and yet as rough
(Their royal blood enchaf'd) as the rud'st wind
That by the top doth take the mountain pine,
And make them stoop to the vale.-Shakespeare.

19. True ease in writing comes from art, not chance,
As those move easiest who have learn'd to dance.
"Tis not enough no harshness gives offence;
The sound must seem an echo to the sense.
Soft is the strain when zephyr gently blows,
And the smooth stream in smoother numbers flows;
But when loud surges lash the sounding shore,
The hoarse rough verse should like a torrent roar.
When Ajax strives some rock's vast weight to throw,
The line, too, labours, and the words move slow;
Not so when swift Camilla scours the plain,

Flies o'er th' unbending corn, and skims along the main.-Pope
20. Good name in man and woman

Is the immediate jewel of their souls.

Who steals my purse, steals trash; 'tis something, nothing:
"Twas mine, 'tis his, and has been slave to thousands.
But he that filches from me my good name,
Robs me of that which not enriches him,
And makes me poor indeed.-Shakespeare.

[ocr errors]

11-Examples of ENUMERATION; or the mentioning of Particulars.

1. I CONSIDER a human soul, without education, like marble in the quarry; which shows none of its inherent beauties, till the skill of the polisher fetches out the colours, makes the surface shine, and discovers every ornamental cloud, spot, and vein, that runs through the body of it.-Spectator.

2. The subject of a discourse being opened, explained, and confirmed; that is to say, the speaker having gained the attention and judgment of his audience, he must proceed to complete his conquest over the passions; such as imagination, admiration, surprise, hope, joy, love, fear, grief, anger. Now he must begin to exert himself; here it is that a fine genius may display itself, in the use of amplification, enumeration, interrogation, metaphor, and every ornament that can render a discourse entertaining, winning, striking, and enforcing,

-Baillie.

3. I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, hor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.-St. Paul.

4. Sincerity is, to speak as we think, to do as we pretend and profess, to perform and make good what we promise, and really to be what we would seem and appear to be.-Tillotson.

5. No blessing of life is any way comparable to the enjoyment of a discreet and virtuous friend; it eases and unloads the mind, clears and improves the understanding, engenders thought and knowledge, animates virtue and good resolutions, sooths and allays the passions, and finds employment for most of the vacant hours of life.-Spectator.

6. The brightness of the sky, the lengthening of the days, the increasing verdure of the spring, the arrival of any little piece of good news, or whatever carries with it the most distant glimpse of joy, is frequently the parent of a social and happy conversation.-World.

7. In fair weather, when my heart is cheered, and I feel that exaltation of spirits, which results from light and warmth, joined with a beautiful prospect of nature, I regard myself as one placed, by the hand of God, in the midst of an ample theatre, in which the sun, moon, and stars, the fruits also, and vegetables of the earth, perpetually changing their positions or their aspects, exhibit an elegant entertainment to the understanding, as well as to the eye. Thunder and lightning, rain and hail, the painted bow and the glaring comets, are decorations of this mighty theatre; and the sable hemisphere, studded with spangles, the blue vault at noon, the glorious gildings and rich colourings in the horizon, I look on as so many successive scenes. -Spectator.

8. Complaisance renders a superior amiable, an equal agreeable, and an inferior acceptable. It smooths distinction, sweetens conversation, and makes every one in the company pleased with himself. It produces good nature and mutual benevolence, encourages the timorous, sooths the turbulent, humanizes the fierce, and distinguishes a society of civilized persons from a company of savages. In a word, complaisance is a virtue that blends all orders of men together in a

Gg

friendly intercourse of words and actions, and is suited to that equality in human nature, which every man ought to consider, so far as is consistent with the order and economy of the world.-Guardian.

9. It is owing to our having early imbibed false notions of virtue, that the word Christian does not carry with it, at first view, all that is great, worthy, friendly, generous, and heroic. The man who suspends his hopes of the rewards of worthy actions till after death; who can bestow, unseen; who can overlook hatred; do good to his slanderer; who can never be angry at his friend; never revengeful to his enemy, is certainly formed for the benefit of society.-Spectator.

10. Though we seem grieved at the shortness of life in general, we are wishing every period of it at an end. The minor longs to be of age; then to be a man of business; then to make up an estate; then to arrive at honours; then to retire. The usurer would be very well satisfied, to have all the time annihilated that lies between the present moment and the next quarter-day; the politician would be contented to lose three years in his life, could he place things in the posture which he fancies they will stand in, after such a revolution of time; and the lover would be glad to strike out of his existence, all the moments that are to pass away before the happy meeting.

11. Should the greater part of the people sit down and draw up a particular account of their time, what a shameful bill would it be ! So much in eating, drinking, and sleeping, beyond what nature requires; so much in revelling and wantonness; so much for the recovery of last night's intemperance; so much in gaming, plays, and masquerades; so much in paying and receiving formal and impertinent visits; so much in idle and foolish prating, in censuring and reviling our neighbours! so much in dressing out our bodies, and in talking of fashions; and so much wasted and lost in doing nothing at all.-Sherlock.

12. If we would have the kindness of others, we must endure their follies. He who cannot persuade himself to withdraw from society, must be content to pay a tribute of his time to a multitude of tyrants; to the loiterer, who makes appointments he never keeps; to the consulter, who asks advice which he never takes-to the boaster, who blusters only to be praised-to the complainer, who whines only to be pitied to the projector, whose happiness is to entertain his friends with expectations, which all but himself know to be vain-to the economist, who tells of bargains and settlements-to the politician, who predicts the consequences of deaths, battles, and alliances-to the usurer, who compares the state of the different funds-and to the talker, who talks only because he loves to be talking.-Johnson.

13. Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unBeemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evit; rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. -Si Paul.

14. Delightful task! To rear the tender thought, To teach the young idea how to shoot;

To pour the fresh instruction o'er the mind,

« AnteriorContinua »