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We are all imitative beings, and our habits of thought, modes of expression, moral sentiments, and intellectual character, are no less influenced by the books we read, than our social habits and common deportment are by the . company we keep. Both exert a powerful influence over the
young. The one on the embellishments of the mind; the other, on the urbanity of manners.
The rules and observations designed to promote correct reading are the same as found in Reader No. 2. In addi. tion to these however, are a few very concise Rules, for the benefit of young writers in their first efforts in composition. These should be committed to memory and ren. dered entirely familiar.
In the latter part of this Reader are a few selections suitable for declamation, or rhetorical reading. · Speaking is an important exercise, and is becoming somewhat common in the primary schools generally.
At the close of the Reader are ORIGINAL RULES, by which the true place of accent may be determined in most words in the language. Eleven of these Rules designate the accented syllable in entire classes of words, without even a single exception.
Rules for Reading, ....
The Pilgrims. Mrs. Sigourney,
A Scene in the Catskill Mountains. Mellen,
To Seneca Lake. Percival ,...
Rules for Pronouncing,..
RULES AND OBSERVATIONS ON READING.
To become a good reader is a valuable attainment. To ensure success, the first step is decision on the part of the scholar. The second is effort, and the third perseverance. The purpose of mind must be as firmly fixed to break up and abandon bad habits, as to establish and confirm good ones. Therefore,
1. Avoid a dull and drawling manner.
5. Avoid a mechanical variety-sliding the voice up and down in a kind of sing-song tone.
6. Avoid beginning a sentence on a high and strained key, and gradually sinking the tone till it tapers off in apparent faintness.
7. Avoid careless blunders in the pauses of punctuation. 8. Avoid reading every character of style alike.
GENERAL HEADS. All the essential requisites in order to become a good reader or speaker, are comprised under three general heads, viz:
3. Modulation of tones. 1. Concerning good articulation. Definition. Good articulation consists in giving every letter its appropriate sound, and every syllable and word a proper and distinctive utterance.
Rule 1. Take special care to give clearness of expression in the utterance of such consonant sounds as mark the distinction of words.
EXERCISES. Times and Seasons. Wastes and deserts. For Christ's sake. His sister hates study.. The beasts straggled
throngh the wastes and forests. The winds strike the ship's sails. It was the severest storm of the season, but the masts stood through the gale. The steadfast stranger grasps the thistle's stalk; When Ajax strives some rock's vast weight to throw.
Rule. 2. Give each vowel under accent that distinctive elementary sound the word requires, and avoid such a half-suppressed utterance of the unaccented vowels as leaves the letter unknown, or assimilates the sound to some other.
EXAMPLES. I mean to say “ government,” but seem to say “gove ermunt.'
I mean to say “proceed," but nothing is heard but prcede ;" leaving it uncertain whether it was
precede.” I mean to say “wholly," but actually do say. “hully."
Ryle 3. Pronounce each word so as not to transfer the sound of its last letter to the succeeding word.
“this is an ice house ;" but from an indistinct articulation I am understood to say, “this is a nicehouse." I mean to say,
That lasts till night.
Şuch an ocean exists.
Note. The figure 1 denotes the full accent, and 2 the half accent.
EXAMPLES. 2 Ac-ri-mo-ni-ous . Vál-e-dic-to-ry
I wish to say