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and Address in the World ; else to those, who see you not, it will seem the Speech of fome other Person.
Were I sure of such Readers, as could reduce these general Rules to particular Cases, I need not give my self the Trouble of descending to Particulars: But that there may be no Help wanting, that I ain able to procure, I shall come. to Rules for all the several Variationis of the Voice, tho they might in some Measure be gather'd from what has been urg'd on this Head, both in what regards the Quality of the Subje&ts, the Nature of the Passions, the several Parts of the Discourse, the Figures made use of, and the Varieties of Words and Phrases.
I shall begin with the Subjects, of which there are several forts ; as, Things Natural, tba good or evil A&tions of Men, the happy or unfortunate Events of Life, &c. Al which ought, as they are of a very different kind, to be spoken with as different an Air and Accent. In speaking of Things Natural, when you design only to make your Hearers understand you, there is no need of Heat or Motion, a clear and distinct Voice and Utterance is sufficient ; because the informing the Understanding being here all the Business, the moving the Will and Passions has nothing to do. But if from this you rise to strike your Auditors with Admiration of the Wonders of Providence, in its Beauty, Wisdom and Power, you must do it in a grave Voice, and a Tone full of Admiration.
If your Discourse be on the Adions of Men, either as just, and honourable, which you would by Praise recommend to the Esteem or Imitation of those, who hear you ; or unjuft or infamous, which you would deter them from by Invective; the Voice must be adapted to the Quality of either; expressing the Just and Honest with a full, lofty, and noble Accent, with a Tone of Satisfa&tion, Honour, and Efteem ; but the unjuft, infamous, or dishonourable, with a strong, violent and passionate Voice, and a Tone of Anger, Disdain and Detestation. your
Discourse be on the Events of human Life, those are some fortunate or happy, others -unfortunate and miserable; you muft likewise vary your Voice according to the Difference. When you congratulate the Fortunatė, your Tone and Accent is brisk and chearful; when you condole the Unfortunate, the Accent must be fad and mournful.
As all the Subjects of Natural Things are not alike for their Grandeur, Beauty and Luftre, as the Heavens and Earth, the Planets and Herbs and Insects, and therefore not to be deliver'd with the fame Voice, and State of Magnificence of Pronunciation; so are not the Ačions and Events of human Life happy or unhappy, good or bad, of the fame Import ; a great and profligate Crime, or a barbarous and extraordinary Cruelty, are of greater Consequence, than a little and coinmon Peccadillo. The Interest and Honour of Life is of greater Importance, than
the Interest of many; the brave Adions of ani illustrious Conqueror, of a MORDANT or an EUGENE; than those of a Wat Tyler or Jack Straw; the Destruction or Safety of a webole Kingdom, than the Lofs or Gain of a private Perfori. So they require a different, and some a more vehement Accent and Pronunciation, than others; for a great Tonė and Accent to trivial and coinmon Occurrences, would be as ridiculous and absurd, as to speak in a plain, low, unconcern'd familiar Tone on the most noble and illustrious Affairs.
: Tho these things perhaps, at first View, may feem more clofely to relate to set Speeches, Ora. tions, or Sermons, yet if the Actor will throughly consider then, they are of no less Concern to him, since whatever he speaks of on the Stage, will fall under some of these Heads, or, at least, these Subjects will often fall in his way to difcourse of in Tragedy. But what follows will, beyond Contradiction, be of immediate Use tó hiin, since it is directive of the Accents and Tones according to the Passions and the Passions are brought always to be in every Part of the Tragic Scene and which, if more introduc'd by our Poets, would get them much more Reputation, as well as Money
If the Speaker will but weigh these Subjects, I have just merition'd, well, and strongly inprint them in his Imagination, they will infallibly give fuch lively Ideas, aś must raise in himfelf the Pallions of Jay or Sorrow, of Fear or si
Boldness, of Anger or Compassion, of Esteem or of Contempt; and if these are fully and emphatically represented, and utter'd with that Variety of Tone and Cadence, which they ought to be, they cannot fail of moving the very fame Affeetions in his Auditors.
When you are therefore to speak, you ought first with Care to consider the Nature of the Thing of which you are to speak, and fix a very deep Impression of it in your own Mind, before you can be throughly touch'd with it your self, or able by an agreeable Sympathy to convey the same Paslion to another. The String of a musical Instrument sounds according to the Force and Impulse of the Master; if the Touch be gentle and soft, the Sound is so too; if strong, the Sound is vivid and strong. It is the faine in Speaking as in Music, if violent Passion produce your Speech, that will produce a violent · Pronunciation ; but if it arise only from a tranquill and gentle Thought, the Force and Accent of the Delivery will be gentle and calm; so that the Speaker ought first to fix the Tone and Accent of hisVoice to every Pallion, that affects him, be it of Joy or Sorrow, that he may by a sympathetical Force convey it to others.
Thus will he best express Love by a gay, soft and charming Voice ; his Hate, by a sharp, sullen, and severe one; his Joy, by a full flowing and brisk Voice ; his Grief, by a fad, dull and languishing Tone ; not without sometimes interrupting the Continuity of the Sound with a
Sigh or Groan, drawn from the very inmost of
Forbad my Tongue to speak of MORTIMER,
ye, I am whipt and Scourg'd with
And King Lear in the same Poet.
Lear. Detested Kite, thou lyeft !
My Train Are Men of choice and rarest Parts,