MODULATION. Modulation consists in such a use of the voice as will convey the thought in the best manner. It has reference to Quality, Melody, Form, Force, Time and Stress.

QUALITY OF VOICE. The Quality, or kind of voice, may be Pure or Impure. In ordinary conversation, reading or speaking, we should always use the Pure; but, in expressing fear, anger, contempt, hatred, loathing, etc., we should employ a different quality of tone. When we feel the influence of these passions, we can easily make use of the proper form, but we should so control our voice that, in reading or speaking, in the absence of passion, we can assume the tone best adapted to give expression to the sentiment.

The Pure quality is used in all cases when there is not a demand for the Impure. Great attention should be given to the cultivation of the conversational voice, until à habit of correct speech is acquired. This tone should always be full, rich and resonant. Of it, there are two varieties—the Simple and the Orotund.


The Simple Pure is used in ordinary conversation, reading and speaking.

EXAMPLES. And he said, A certain man had two sons : and the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. And he divided unto them his living.

Two brown heads with tossing curls,
Red lips shutting over pearls,
Bare feet, white and wet with dew,
Two eyes black, and two eyes blue-
Little boy and girl were they,
Katie Lee and Willie Gray.


The Orotund is a full, round tone used in expressing grandeur, awe, sublimity, courage, reverence, veneration and other holy emotions.


Thou, too, sail on, O Ship of State!
Sail on, O UNION, strong and great!

2. O thou that rollest above, round as the shield of my fathers whence are thy beams, 0 Sun, thy everlasting light! Thou comest forth in thy awful beauty-the moon, cold and pale, sinks in the western wave!

The Impure quality of voice is used to express the action of the baser passions. It is also used in mimicry. The Impure Qualities are the Aspirate, Pectoral, Guttural and Falsetto.

The Aspirate is the intense whisper, with little or no vocality. It is used to denote fear, secrecy, great caution, etc.

EXAMPLES.—(Pure, or Whisper). 1. Soldiers, you are now within a few steps of the enemy's outpost. Our scouts report them slumbering around their watch-fires, and entirely unprepared for our attack. Let every man keep the strictest silence, under pain of instant death.


Hark! I hear the bugles of the enemy! They are on their march along the bank of the river. We must retreat instantly, or be cut off from our boats. I see the head of their column already rising over the height. Our only safety is in the screen of this hedge. Keep close to it; be silent; and stoop as you run. For the boats ! Forwardi



Hark! what was that? Hark! Hark to the shout!


And now the work of life and death
Hung on the passing of a breath;
The fire of conflict burned within;
The battle trembled to begin.

The Pectoral is the deep tone of despair and anger. It is used to denote great solemnity, and in describing the supernatural. It is orotund, very low in pitch, and is formed wholly in the throat.


O, I have passed a miserable night,
So full of fearful dreams and ugly sights,
That, as I am a Christian, faithful man,
I would not spend another such a night,
Though 'twere to buy a world of happy days—
So full of dismal terror was the time.


she skies they were ashen and sober,
Che leaves they were crisped and sear,
Che leaves they were withering and sear.
wit was night in the lonesome October,
Wf my most immemorial year,
*t was hard by the dim lake of Auber
In the misty mid region of Wier.
It was down by the dark tarn of Auber,
In the ghoul-haunted woodland of Wier.

The Guttural is a harsh throat-tone, lacking the orotund quality of the Pectoralthe language of hatred, intense anger. loathing and contempt.


I loathe ye in my bosom,

I scorn ye with mine eye,
And I'll taunt ye with my latest breath,

And fight ye till I die!


“Curse on him !" quoth false Sextus; “will not the villain

drown? But for this stay, ere close of day we should have sacked the


The Falsetto is a shrill, high-pitched tone, used in expressing pain or terror. It is also employed in imitating the female voice.


1. When the lorn damsel, with a frantic screech

And cheeks as hueless as a brandy peach,
Cries, “ Help, kyind Heaven!and drops upon her knees
On the green-baize, beneath the-canvas-trees.


“Now, Socrates, dearest,” Xantippe replied,
“I hate to hear everything vulgarly my'd;
Now, whenever you speak of your chattels again,

Say our cow house, our barn yard, our pig pen.”
“By your leave, Mrs. Snooks, I will say what I please

Of my houses, my lands, my gardens, my trees.”
“ Say our,” Xantippe exclaimed, in a rage.
“ I won't, Mrs. Snooks, though you ask it an age !"


“Goodwife," quoth John, “did you see that moose ?

Whar sorra was the cat ?”
“ A mouse?”—Ay, a moose.

_“Na, na, Guidman,
It wasna a mouse, 'twas a rat.
I've seen more mice than you, Guidman-

An' what think ye o' that?
Sae haud your tongue an’ say nae mair-
I tell ye it was a rat."


Melody in Elocution is the effect produced upon the ear by the succession of vocal notes. It has reference to Pitch, Slides, and Cadence.

Pitch relates to the elevation or depression of the tone. It varies according to the sentiment. It may be Natural, Low or High.

Natural Pitch is used in all ordinary discourse.


1. England's sun was slowly setting o'er the hills so far away,

Filling all the land with beauty at the close of one sad day;
And the last rays kissed the forehead of a man and maiden fair,
He with step so slow and weakened, she with sunny, floating

He with sad bowed head, and thoughtful, she with lips so cold

and white, Struggling to keep back the murmur, “Curfew must not ring


When Music (heavenly maid !) was young,
While yet in early Greece she sung,
The Passions oft, to hear her shell,
Thronged around her magic cell;
Possessed beyond the Muse's painting.
By turns they felt the glowing mind
Disturbed-delighted, raised, refined.

Low Pitch is used in language serious, grave, sublime, grand, solemn, reverential and vehement.



I had a dream that was not all a dream.
The bright sun was extinguished, and the stars
Did wander darkling in the eternal space,
Rayless and pathless, and the icy earth
Swung blind and blackening in the moonless air


Silence how dead, and darkness how profound.
No eye nor listening ear an object finds;
Creation sleeps. 'Tis as the general pulse
Of life stood still, and Nature made a pause-
An awful pause! prophetic of her end.

High Pitch is used to express sentiment lively, joyous or impassioned. It is also characteristic of fear and grief.

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