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8. We resumed our seats in a kind of tranquil astonishment, as the storm gradually subsided. The thunder rolled sublimely still, but at a greater distance. The blue of tho atmosphere began to show itself at the zenith. The clouds rolled away toward the east; and the sun came forth in his brightness just above the smoking summits of the hills.
9. The scene, which was terrific in the fury of the storm, was now an indescribable mixture of beauty'and grandeur. Frequent gleams of the most vivid lightning played on the passing extremities of the clouds. White pillars of mist arose from the earth. The birds welcomed the return of the sun and the renewed repose of nature, with a thousand mingled songs.
Questions. — What is the rule for language that is grave, grand, or sublime? What
does this exercise illustrate 1 What,and v)heret is Mexico t
Rule 5. Tender emotion, and mildly pathetic and plaintive language, should be uttered in a soft and subdued tone of voice, with rather slow movement, and a prevailing rising inflection.
AN INCIDENT IN WEBSTER'S* LIFE. — American Statesman.
The Sallietic and other Tender Emotions,
1. The following deeply affecting and simple narrative equally illustrates the benevolence and the religious views of Mr. Webster.
2. In answer to some imputations on Mr. Webster's re
* Web'ster, (Daniel,) one of the most distinguished and celebrated of American statesmen, was born in Salisbury, N. H., January 18,1782; and he died at Marsh-, field, Mass., October 24,1852, in the seventy-first year of his age. Among the publio men of his day none were superior to him iu talents, learning, and forcible eloquence. ligious principles, a widowed lady, who resided in the vicinity of Mr. Webster's early home, used the following decided and emphatic language :'— .
S. "Mr. Webster an infidel! I can not believe that . I have known him long; and, if it would not savor too much of egotism, I could relate some incidents which would, I think, convince you, beyond all reasonable doubt, that he certainly was not an infidel."
4. She was requested to do so, and accordingly wrote the following : — " Mr. Webster and my husband became acquainted in early life; and the friendship of youth extended to riper years. They were truly congenial spirits, and sought each other's society as much as possible.
5. "But the cares of business at length separated them, and for many years* they seldom met . My husband settled down in 4his place; and Mr. Webster went forth to battle inthe councils of the nation.
6. "For some time, we were greatly prospered. A lucrative business brought us wealth almost beyond our hopes. Two children came like sunbeams to light up our happy home with their joyous smiles, and to cheer our spirits with their innocent prattle.
7. "Those were happy days; and I love to recall them. But, alas! they were soon covered with clouds of darkness, which even the eye of faith could hardly penetrate.
8. "Some of the firms in which my husband's funds were placed became involved; and our little all was swept from our grasp. When he found that every effort to recover it only plunged him deeper into difficulty, he became disheartened. Soon his health failed; and he was compelled to give up his business entirely.
9. "He then sold the shop and what else we could spare, and, with the avails, paid every debt except one. This was due to a friend, who chose to wait for his money rather than take from us the cottage where we lived, -r- the pnly property we could then call our own.
10. "But scarcely was the arrangement made, when the gentleman died, leaving the note in the hands of one who knew not how to show mercy. He demanded immediate payment; and we were about to sell our house when our son was taken down with a fever, and soon left us, as we hope, for a better land.
11. "The same disease prostrated my husband; and when the physician told me he must die, I felt that my cup of sorrow was full. But no; I was mistaken.
12. "There was yet another drop to be mingled in that cup of bitterness. While my husband yet lingered between life and death, my daughter, the only remaining child, was taken sick also; and, after five days' suffering, she, too, left us, to rejoin her brother in the ' spiriUland.'
13. "Do you ask how I bore this second bereavement? I believe I had not leisure to think of it . All my time and attention were given to my husband, who was slowly, but surely, going down to the grave.
14. "I had even forgotten the hard-hearted creditor. But he did not forget! Inexorable as death itself, he came at the time appointed, and demanded the money. I think he must have been intoxicated; for I am sure no man in his senses could have been so cruel.
15. "I told him my husband was dying; but he replied: 'Sorry, sorry to hear it. He won't earn any more money; and, as you can't pay up, I '11 just take the house. You can live somewhere else, as-you have no one to look after.' I interrupted his cruel remarks; and, thinking to move his feelings, I led him to the room where lay the cold form of my child!
16. "Vain hope! I might as well have tried to move an iceberg! After much entreaty, I obtained permission to remain in the house while my loved one livedj on condition that I gave up the furniture. This I promised, that J might no more be troubled with his loathsome presence.
17. "The man left me, and I sunk into a chair, utterly over
come at the prospect of the desolation before me. At that moment, I heard a rap at the door. I could not rise to obey the summons; for I felt that my heart was breaking! But the door slowly opened, and Mr. Webster stood before me.
18. "He had come home on a visit; and, without knowing any of our sorrows, he rode over to see and embrace his early friend. What was his surprise to find him thus! And when the story of our troubles had been told, when he had assured himself that his long-cherished friend had but a few more hours to live, he sat down and wept.
19. -' Then he asked to see the corpse of his little pet, who, when he last visited us, sat upon his knee, and played with his watch. As he rose to leave the bed, my husband said in a whisper, ' Fetch her to me, that I, too, may look upon her sweet face once more.'
20. "We placed the still beautiful form beside the bed, and, standing near it, gave ourselves up to uncontrollable grief. When able to command his voice, Mr. Webster said, 'Let us pray'; and, kneeling there beside the dying and the dead, he prayed as none but a Christian can pray. Sure I am that a prayer, so earnest, so full of faith and hope in the Redeemer, was never poured forth from the lips of an infidel.
21. "Gladly would he have stopped wjth us through the night; but business forbade his stay. He left us; and as he grasped for the last time the hand of his dying friend, those pale features were lighted up with a smile of hope, such as they had not worn for many a day. The troubled spirit was at rest; for the assurance had been given that the widow should be provided for in her affliction.
22. "My husband died the next day. I saw no more -of the hard-hearted creditor; and the house remained unsold. I still occupy it; and the room where Mr. Webster kneeled in prayer is to, me a sacred place."
Questions. — What la the rale for tender emotion, and mildly pathetic and plaintive language? What does this piece more especially illustrate? Point out passage* which illustrate each particular of the rule? What Mr. Webster is spoken of in thu txercise? Whatcommendable trait of character does it illustrate?
Rule 6. Language of declamation, as public speeches, orations, and the like, should be read with a distinct and forcible utterance, the pitch and. movement varying according to the intensity of the emotions. The falling inflection usually prevails.
SELF-SACRIFICING AMBITION. —H. Greeley.
1. We need a loftier ideal to nerve us for heroic deeds. To know and feel our nothingness without regretting it; to deem fame, riches, personal happiness, but shadows of which human good is the substance; to welcome pain, privation, ignominy', so that the sphere of human knowledge, the empire of virtue, be thereby extended, — such is the temper which the heroes of the coming age should possess.
2. When the stately monuments of the mightiest conquerors shall have become shapeless and forgotten ruins, the humble graves of earth's Howards* and Frysf shall still be freshened by the tears of fondly admiring millions; and the proudest epitaph shall be the simple entreaty, "Write me as one who loved his fellow-men."
3. Say not that I thus condemn and would annihilate ambition. The love of approbation, of esteem, of true glory, is a noble incentive, and should be cherished to the end. But the ambition which points the way to fame over torn limbs and bleeding hearts, — which joys in the Tartarean J smoke of
* How'ard, (John,) a celebrated philanthropist, was born in Hackney, England, in 1726. He died in 1790.
t Fry, (Elizabeth,) an English lady, highly distinguished for her benevolence, was born i» 1780. ..
t Tar-ta're-fl-n, pertaining .to Tarfcirus,. whlch^ jn the earliest mythology of-the' Breeks, was the kingdom of the dead, or tho infernal regions in general, over which Pluto *ei^ned.