Page images


Not being able to find, in any single text-book, the pieces which I have been in the practice of giving to my pupils, as exercises in recitation, I have been at length.compelled to make a selection of my own. In making this selection, I have studiously avoided the introduction of numerous vapid common-place extracts, which are to be found in the best collections ; but which are exceedingly ill adapted to interest the student, and, consequently, to call forth those powers, the development and the cultivation of which, are the prime object of the teacher.

In the Introduction which follows, an attempt is made to simplify Mr. Walker's system of the inflections—with what degree of success, I leave it to the critic to judge ; but, even if I have failed, I shall still content myself with the reflection, that the undertaking will most probably have the effect of causing that system to be more narrowly inquired into; and of eventually producing—what every teacher with whom I have conversed upon the subject, has acknowledged to be a thing “ devoutly to be wished”-a reduction in the number, and a more lucid economy in the arrangement of the rules. So much for the lovers of system.

For my owa part, with all the respect in the world for system, I conceive it my duty to state that I consider system to be a merely secondary consideration, in the article of delivery—and to warn the student and the teacher against trusting to it chiefly, for the effect of the oration. Here Nature is your only goddess; for he is your only orator, whom she inspires. Emotion is the thing. One flash of passion upon the cheek --one beam of feeling from the eye-one thrilling note of sensibility from the tongue—one stroke of hearty emphasis from the arm-have a thousand times the value of the most masterly exemplification of . all the rules, that all the rhetoricians, of both ancient and modern times, have given us, for the government of the voice—when that exemplification is unaccompanied by such adjuncts. :

I have not attached to this collection any system of pronunciation, as pronunciation is better, because more amply, taught, in dictionaries. i

I have taken the liberty of differing from all my predecessors, in not attempting to give a description of the principal passions; and for this plain reason—No man who really feels a passion, can err in his delineation of it; and I conclude these few preliminary remarks, with one brief recommendation, which, I conceive, includes all that is essential in delivery


[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

On the Threatened Invasion in 1803, . . . Hall, 68

The Christian Mother, . . . . Kirwan, 71

Christ our Consolation and Relief, under the ap-

prehension of being Separated by Death, from

those we Love, . . . . . . . Logan, 72

Infatuation of Mankind with regard to the Things

of Time, ·


Kırwan, 73

Danger of Delay in Matters of Religion, . . Logan, 74

On the Death of the Princess Charlotte, . . Hall, 77

On the Death of the Princess Charlotte, . . Chalmers, 81

Sitting in the Chair of the Scorner, . . . Logan, 85

The Plurality of Worlds not an Argument against

the Truth of Revelation, . .

Chalmers, 86

Christ's Agony,' . . . . . . Logan, 89

The Deluding Influence of the World, . . Kirwan, 90

There is no Peace to the Wicked, . i . Logan, 92

On the Importance of an Interest in the Divine

Favour, . . . . . . . . Cappe, 94

The Melancholy Effects of Early Licentiousness,

in a Sermon, preached for the Female Orphan

House, . . . . . . . . Kirwan, 97

Religion the distinguishing Quality of our Nature, Logan, 98


Hannibal to his Soldiers, . . . . . Livy, 101

Speech of Lord Chatham in the House of Peers

against the American War, and against employ-

ing the Indians in it, . . . . i


Cicero against Verres, . . .

Invectives against Hastings, . . . . Sheridan, 110

Cicero for Milo, . . . . . ?

Lord Chatham's Reply to Sir Robert Walpole, .


Caius Marius to the Romans, . . .


Demosthenes to the Athenians, exciting them to

prosecute the War against Philip, . . .


Curran for Hamilton Rowan, ..


Debate on the Character of Julius Cæsar, . .



Apostrophe to Love, . . . . . . . Burns, 174

The Soldier's Dream. . . . . . Campbell, 174

On True Dignity, . . . . . . Beattie, 175

Glenara, . .

. . . . Campbell, 176

The Death of Marmion, . . . . Sir Walter Scott, 177

The Burial of Sir John Moore, . . . Wolfe, 177

The Battle of Hohenlinden, ... . Campbell, 178

« PreviousContinue »