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These examples may serve to show what a cadence is, and also, in one particular, what it is not, namely, that it is not always, and as a matter of course, a concluding note of a sentence. So far is the latter from being true, we shall find that very many sentences require no depression of voice at their close, and that they frequently require it to be elevated. In all extemporaneous speaking, whether it be in conversation, or in addressing assemblies of people, we shall find that speakers elevate their voices the end of their sentences much more commonly than is generally supposed, or than persons generally do when they read, or when they practise declamation. By elevation of voice is not here intended a greater degree of loudness, nor more volume of sound, but its relative position in the scale of ascending and descending, without regard to the quantity of noise which it produces; it is, in short, the note which is touched, or its elevation of tone.
A regular cadence is accompanied with the falling inflection, either primary or secondary,* and which of these should be employed must be determined by the rules which govern those inflections respectively.
In extemporaneous speaking, just alluded to, not only is the last syllable in a sentence raised to a higher note than that of a cadence, but it has also the rising slide, more frequently than in reading. Without attempting to decide the question whether this elevation of voice and this particular slide should occur as often in reading as in the other cases, it may be safely affirmed that they should be heard much more frequently than they are, especially when what is read is a speech, in fact, or a production in the nature of one.
As to the question which may now be asked, When should a cadence be made ? I do not know that any rule can be given which would not be encumbered with many exceptions. Should it be said that a cadence is made when the voice comes to a full rest, this would be true, probably, in a great majority of cases; yet the voice very frequently comes to this rest on a note higher than that of the penult syllable. Should it be said that a cadence occurs when a particular thought or sentiment is terminated, this again would be true to a great extent, but not universally. Perhaps the most general and unexceptionable rule which can be given is,
That a cadence occurs at the close of a thought oi sentiment which is complete in itself, and which conveys
* A syllable which forms a cadence may, however, and often does, admit the rising slides.
an intimation that there is nothing to follow which is essentially dependent on what has already been said.
It is quite certain that a cadence always interrupts the chain of thought, and that it never occurs without producing a pause in the attention of the hearer, by inclining him instinctively to suppose that such a pause is demanded by the speaker himself.
Hence it is easy to deduce a general rule, showing when a cadence is not to be used.
When a particular thought or sentiment is started, a cadence is not to be made until this thought or sentiment is fully expressed and completed.
Thus, a cadence should never be made between a nominative and its verb, however separated by adjuncts, nor between any of the component parts of a sentence, however numerous and long-continued. Though this rule is quite obvious on the least reflection, yet none is oftener violated both in reading and speaking, especially if what is spoken has been previously committed to writing, or the promptings of natural feeling and a sense of propriety have been otherwise suppressed. Not a few preachers violate this rule in the reading of the sacred Scriptures and of hymns, and in the delivery of their written discourses; and a large proportion of all who read in public do the same to a greater or less extent.
EXAMPLES OF A RIGHT AND WRONG USE OF CADENCE.
Whosoever shall break one of these least commandments', and shall teach men so', he shall be called least^ in the kingdom of heav
Wrong. Whosoever shall break one of these least command and shall teach men he shall be called least in ‘ments,
in all his glory,
of was not arrayed like one these. Or, And yet I say unto you that even Solomon', in all his glo
ry', of was not arrayed like one these. Or, And yet I say unto you
that even Solo
in all his glory;
R. Fine sensel and exalted sens'e are not half so valuable
mon as com sense.
W. Fine sens'e and exalted
are not half so valuable sen
mon as com
sense. Fine and exalted sensè
are not half so valuable as sen
se mon com
sense. R. That man may lâst, but never lives", Who mùch receives', but nothing'
gives. W. That man may last, but never
lives, Who much "eceives", but nothing
gives'. R. Come', holy Spirit', heavenly Dove',
With all thy quick’ning powers',
In these cold hearts of
In these cold hearts of
love. W. O death', all è lo
love. Examples of cadence, in compound sentences, at pauses of a
semicolon, foc. A false cadence is not here noted.
world, cause he follows nature, and so is put to no trouble and care about his words and tion's. He needs not invent any pretences beforehand', nor make excuses afterwards', for any thing
quènt, you only prove
he nas said' donel. But insincerity' is very troublesomé to màn A hypocrité has so many things to attend to'as make
sage. his life a very perplexed' and intri thing. A liar hath need of a good memory', lest he contradict' at one time what he hath said at ano'th But trùth is always consistent with itself", and needs nothing to help it out; it is always near at han'd, and sits upon our
whereas' a liè is troublesome',
lìps; and needs a great many more to make it
In the second place', we are to consider those who have mistaken notions of hon And these are such as establish any thing to themselves for a point of hon'or vhich is contrary
coun either to the laws of God or of their 'try'; who think it more honorable to revenger than to forgive an injų make no scruple of telling a lîe, but would put any man to
of death that accùsés them ít; who are more careful to guard
vir their reputation by their couragé than by their tué. True fortitude is, indeed', so becoming in human nature that he who wants it scarce deserves the name of man'; but we find several who so much abuse this notion' that they place the whole idèá of honor' in a kind of brútál court by which means we have those among us who have called themselves mèn of honor that would have been a disgráce to a
Note.-In future, the rising and falling of a note on a syllable will be sig. nified, when occasion shall require it, by a point placed over the syllable if it is to be raised a note, and by one placed under it if it is to fall. A semitone will be denoted in like manner by a comma.
The grammatical pauses of a comma, semicolon, colon, and period, together with the dash (-) and the marks of exclamation and interrogation (!?), denote that a pause is to be made after each, rather than the precise length of time that the voice should stop. It is true, in general, that a comma denotes a shorter pause
than a semicolon, a semicolon than a colon, and a colon than a period. Still, how long the voice should stop at
each must be decided by circumstances and the nature of the case, and not by any one determinate rule. Here is room for the exercise of judgment and good taste, which must be acquired by reflection and experience. Cases may occur when a longer pause ought to be made at a comma than even at a period; and the same grammatical pause may occur a number of times in immediate succession, requiring a different length of time at each.
A rapid succession of ideas, urgency of manner in which a thought is enforced, playfulness of mind, and familiarity in general, will require shorter pauses than the opposites of all these. When something is expressed which it is quite important for the hearer to notice and retain, the pause should be protracted long enough for that purpose. Many important thoughts must be lost unless such an opportunity is given, and the hearer will be little profited or interested in listening to a reader who hurries him along from thought to thought with no allowance of time for distinguishing one from another. An emphatic expression before a stop requires a longer halt of the voice there than one which is not emphatic, for the obvious reason that such an expression deserves due attention, for which an opportunity must be afforded. Take the following example : “ When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child ; but, when I became a man“, I
put away childish things." Here it is easily seen that a longer pause is demanded after man than at any of the preceding
So, in this instance, “ Vìrtué, not rolling suns', the mind matures,” a longer stop is made after virtue than after suns. Take another example :-“ As Cæsar loved mé, I weep for him; as he was fortunaté, I rejoice at it; as he was valiánt, I honor him ;—but, as he was ambitious', I slew him.” Here are several semicolons, but a longer rest of the voice is evidently required at the last, than at any which preceded it.
The marks of exclamation and interrogation are not inserted in books or in writing for the purpose of showing how long a pause must be made where they occur, but of drawing the attention of the reader to the fact that an exclamation is made in the case of one, and a question put in that of the other. Thus they give notice how a passage is to be read, rather than show how long a person should stop where they are inserted. Sometimes we stop no longer than the time commonly denoted by a comma, sometimes that of a semicolon, sometimes that of a period, for they are thrown in where any of these grammatical points might have been used in their stead had there not been a different object in employing them. When they make