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leader William to the possession of the English throne. This prince soon after his accession, endeavoured to bring his own language (the Norman French) into use among his new subjects; but his efforts were not very successful, as the Saxons entertained a great antipathy to these haughty foreigners. In process of time, however, many Norman words and phrases were incorporated into the Saxon language: but its general form and construction still remained the same. From the conquest to the reformation, the language continued to receive occasional accessions of foreign words, till it acquired such a degree of copiousness and strength, as to render it susceptible of that polish which it has received from writers of taste and genius, in the last and present centuries. During this period, the learned have enriched it with many significant expressions, drawn from the treasures of Greek and Roman literature; the ingenious and the fashionable have imported occasional supplies of French, Spanish, Italian, and German words, gleaned during their foreign excursions: and the connexions which we maintain, through the medium of government and commerce, with many remote uations, have made some additions to our native vocabulary.
Select English Grammars.
Bp. Lowth's Introduction to English Grammar, 12mo. Introduction to English Grammar, by R. Kitson, 12mo. Lindley Murray's English Grammar, Exercises, and Key. Grant's English Grammar, 12mo. (see p. 11. note.)
As useful companions to the above may be added, Johnson's Dictionary, 2 vols. 4to. Walker's Pronouncing Dictionary, 8vo. Nares' Elements of Orthoepy, 8vo. and Robertson on Punctuation, 12mo.
RHETORIC denotes the art of composition, or that which enables us to apply language or speech to the best advantage; and affords us the power of communicating with fluency to others, our feelings and our thoughts. It includes all compositions whose object is to move, incline, and persuade, by addressing the imagination and the affections. Cicero has given us the best rule for composition, in the following concise manner:-1. We are to consider what is to be said. 2, How, or in what words. 3. In what manuer it must be ornamented.
SECT. I.-DIFFERENT SPECIES OF ELOQUENCE, AND PROPER DIVISIONS OF A DISCOURSE.
There were three species of eloquence or oratorical composition among the antient rhetoricians; the demonstrative, the deliberative, and the judicial.
1. Demonstrative. This comprehends the panegyric and funeral eulogy so frequently used by the antients. In the former class may be enumerated the panegyric of Isocrates on Evagoras, king of Salamis; Cicero's oration on the pardoning of Marcellus; his Philippics against Mark Antony, and the panegyric on Trajan by Pliny. Among the moderns, may be named, the funeral discourses of the most celebrated French and English preachers-the éloges pronounced upon eminent men before the French academy-some modern pulpit compositions--and occasional speeches, delivered, at various times, in the British Parliament.
2. Deliberative, embraces all matters connected with legislation and government; as, war and peace--domestic interests the regulation of commerce, etc. etc. This species of eloquence, can be cultivated, in a free state only; we shall, therefore, in antient times, find its noblest memorials in the works of Demosthenes and Cicero ; and in modern days, our own island will boast, almost exclusively, of this species of eloquence. It will be sufficient to mention the parliamentary speeches of Chatham-of Burke -of Fox-and of Pitt.
3. Judicial, or forensic eloquence, comprises the whole extent of judicial proceedings, both criminal and civil. When Rome could boast her illustrious days of forensic eloquence, Cicero and Hortensius gave full scope to their talents. For a long series of years, the proceedings of our own courts of justice have evinced proofs of the most astonishing sagacity, the clearest judgment, and the readiest wit. To mention names, in this place, would be only to exhibit a galaxy of talent which has long been visible, in legal hemisphere, to the naked eye of every common
The proper divisions of a discourse are six, the exordium or introduction; the statement of the subject; the narra
tion or explication; the reasoning or argument; the pathetic part; and the peroration or conclusion.
1. The design of the exordium is to conciliate the good opinion of the hearers; to excite their attention; and to render them open to persuasion. An introduction should be easy and natural, and always suggested by the subject of the discourse. 2. The statement should be as clear and distinct as possible, and expressed in the most concise and simple manner: for that speaker or writer is best attended to, who gives a brief and plain view of the points in question. 3. The qualities essential to narration are, to place in the most striking point of view, every fact which is to the advantage of the speaker; and to soften such as are not favourable to his cause. To be distinct and concise, are especial requisites to narration, which ought to illustrate every thing that follows. 4. Arguments should be disposed in a natural and lucid manner; expressed in the most forcible language; and none but the most important admitted or dwelt upon. 5. The pathetic part should be unaffected and simple; accommodated to the proper language of the passions; and should possess no extraneous ornaments. 6. The conclusion must be regulated by the nature of the discourse; sometimes, the arguments must be summed up and repeated; sometimes, the tone of pathos should be assumed; and at others, it should rise into dignity and spirit. But the principal rule is, to place that last, which is of the greatest importance to the subject.
STYLE is the manner in which a person expresses himself by means of words, and it is characteristic of his thoughts. Every country possesses a language and a style suited to the genius of its inhabitants. The principal distinctions of style arise from the diversity of subjects. The same mode of expression would be as inconsistent upon different occasions, as the same dress for persons of different ranks, or, for different seasons of the year. A plain stylė rejects all ambitious ornaments. It should possess perspicuity and precision: rhetorical figures or musical arrangement need not be resorted to. This style is peculiarly suited to philosophical discussion, which does not ad
mit of much ornament. Its chief merit is, that its meaning. is intelligible to all, and that it requires no explanatory circumlocutions. Of the plain or simple style, there are many striking instances in the Scriptures. In the begin ning GOD created the heavens and the earth. And again, GOD made two great lights; the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: He made the stars also.
The sublime, when elevated to the utmost extent of its powers, does not attend to any niceties of language; it gives the most vigorous and lively conception of things, and expresses them in the most emphatic terms. Many striking instances of the sublime are to be found among antient authors. Of all writings, the BIBLE affords us the most wonderfully noble descriptions. The Psalms abound with them. The waters saw thee, O GOD, the waters saw thee, and were afraid; the depths also were troubled. The clouds poured out water, the air thundered, and thine arrows went abroad. The voice of thy thunder was heard round about; the lightning shone upon the ground; the earth was moved and shook withal. Thy way is in the sea, and thy paths in the great waters, and thy footsteps are not known.' The noblest example recorded by Moses, and so much celebrated by Longinus in his treatise on the sublime, is this. And God said, let there be light, and there was light. A similar thought is magnificently expanded in Isaiah xxiv. 24, 27, 28. He rode upon the cherubim, and did fly: he came flying upon the wings of the wind, Psalm xviii. 10. This has been rendered by Sternhold and Hopkins in the true spirit of poetry, and is, perhaps, one of the most sublime passages in the English language:
On cherubs and on cherubims,* And on the wings of mighty winds The New Version of Brady and Tate affords a complete specimen of the Bathos, or the art of sinking in poetry.
full royally he rode, came flying all abroad.
The chariot of the king of kings
Which active troops of angels drew,
• This should be cherub and cherubim, both being Hebrew words; just as we say, phenomenon and phenomena from the Greek.
The chariot, the active troops of angels DRAWING it, -the STRONG tempest-its RAPID WINGS, present to the mind, a collection of images, both ludicrous and absurd. The two sluggish words, most amazing, used to convey an idea of extreme swiftness, are equally improper. For further instances of the sublime, see also Isaiah vii. 7. viii. 9, 10. xliv. 24, 27, 28. xl. 12. 15. 17. xlv. 6. Job xxxix. 19-25. Psalm xxxvii. 35, 36. Exod. iii. 14, Dan. vi. 14. 31. Job xxvi. 14.
The pathetic style speaks the language of nature; art and labour must have no share in forming it. There is a material difference between painting to the imagination and to the heart; in the latter, no effect can be produced, unless it seem to be the work of nature only. The completest specimens of the pathetic, perhaps, are the two following from the Scriptures. But Zion said, the Lord hath forsaken me, the Lord hath forgotten me. Can a woman for, get her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? Yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee. Isaiah xlix. 14, 15. O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy chil dren together, even as the hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not. Matt. xxiii. 37. See also Zech. ii. 8 Psalm xvii. 8. Gen. xliii. 30. xlv. 12. 14, 15. Lament. Jerem. i. 1. 4. ii. 10. iv. 4. ix. 1. Isaiah lxiii. 15. Ixiv. 8-12.
Purity of style consists in the use of such words and constructions as belong to the idiom of the language in which we write: in opposition to words that are obsolete, new-coined, or used without proper authority. By per spicuity, we arrange the words and parts of a sentence in such a manner, as to convey our ideas clearly to the minds of others. Energy or vigour of style, consists principally in brevity, and a proper use of tropes and figures, for an explanation of which, see the next section. The harmony, or euphony of a sentence depends upon the introduction of words and sentences which vary in their length; these, however, must be skilfully arranged, or there will be no musical construction. To attain dignity of style, or sublimity, the object described, must not only in itself be sub