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Examples of pause between words of a series:
The store, / the office, / the factory, / the farm, / — all contribute to this vast audience. She was sent to the store to buy eggs, / sugar, / butter, / and coffee. The charge is utterly, / totally, / and meanly / false. CASE II. — Pause to mark unusual rhetorical or grammatical constructions. Under this case come the pauses that we all make when we find words omitted, or words out of their natural order. The reason for such pauses is clear. For a moment the mind is uncertain just what is meant; that is, the mental image or idea is blurred, and some interval of time, be it ever so small, is needed to make the proper mental adjustment. Such pauses serve to say to the audience, “Now, watch this picture carefully in order to see what it really is.” They also serve to hold the idea a little longer before the mind's eye, in order that we may comprehend it more completely. Example of words omitted:
A people / once enslaved / may groan ages in bondage.
NotE. — The second pause in the above sentence is, of course, due to a different cause.
The night has a thousand eyes,
Example of words out of their natural order:
She was a Prince's child,
I am now what most folks / well-to-do / would call.
ExERCISES FOR LOCATING PAUSES
Let the student copy the following and locate the pauses by drawing a slanting straight line between the words where the pauses occur. Let those pauses which come under the cases already given be indicated by number at the top of the line, as, He came, */ but it was too late; showing that this pause comes under Case I.
The eulogium pronounced on the character of the state of South Carolina, by the honorable gentleman, for her revolutionary and other merits, meets my hearty concurrence. I shall not acknowledge that the honorable gentleman, goes before me, in regard for whatever of distinguished talent or distinguished character South Carolina has produced. I claim a part of the honor; I partake in the pride of her great name. I claim them for countrymen, one and all. The Laurences, the Rutledges, the Pinckneys, the Sumters, the Marions, - Americans, all, — whose fame is no more to be hemmed in by State lines, than their talents and patriotism were capable of being circumscribed within the same narrow limits.
In their day and generation, they served and honored the country and the whole country ; and their renown is of the treasures of the whole country. Him whose name the gentleman himself bears, – does he suppose me less capable of gratitude for his patriotism, or sympathy for his sufferings, than if his eye had first opened upon the light in Massachusetts, instead of South Carolina P Sir, does he suppose it is in his power to exhibit a Carolina name so bright as to produce envy in my bosom ? No, Sir: increased gratification and delight, rather. Sir, I thank God that, if I am gifted with little of the spirit which is said to be able to raise mortals to the skies, I have yet none, as I trust, of that other spirit which would drag angels down. —WEBSTER.
CASE III. — Pause to mark appositives, parenthetical expressions, direct quotations, and words used independently.
Pauses under this case are used to designate words of different value from those used to convey the regular flow of the speaker's thought. They serve to say to the audience: “Here my thought is interrupted (in the case of appositives or parenthetical expressions) to add some explanatory matter, or (in case of words used independently) to call attention, or (in the case of a quotation) to insert the words of another,” and they mark the beginning and end of such interruptions. Examples:
(a) Words in apposition.
Orsino, / noble sir, / Be pleased I shake off these names you give me. Caesar sent his lieutenant, / Titus Labienus, / to attend to these affairs.
(6) Parenthetical expressions.
The time is coming, is almost here, when hanging above many a mantel board in fair New England / — glorifying many a cottage in the sunny south / — shall be seen bound together in everlasting love and honor two cross-swords carried to battle respectively by the grandfather that wore the blue and the grandfather that wore the gray.
You cannot, — I venture to say it / — you cannot conquer America! — PITT.
Then muttered the mate, / “I’m a man of Devon 1" /
“There's English rope that bides our necks,
I am asked, / “Would you render the judges superior to the legislature ?” / I answer, / “No; but coördinate.”
(c) Words used independently.
John, / retire at once.
be lost on a New England ear.
CASE IV. — Pause for impressiveness. Oftentimes a speaker wishes to make a mental image, or idea, especially impressive. In such cases, of course, his problem is to hold the mental image for some time before his audience, and in such a way as to increase its vividness. This may be done, first, by clearing the mind, by means of a pause, of all other images; and second, by giving this idea time to become vivid by inserting a pause before any other idea is given. Examples: You cannot, — / I venture to say it — / you cannot conquer America. I tell you plainly that the bill, should it pass, cannot be enforced. It will prove only a blot / on your statute book, a reproach / to the year, and a disgrace / to the American Senate. I repeat, / it will not / be executed ; it will rouse the dormant spirit of the people, and open their eyes to the approach of despotism. The country has sunk into avarice / and political corruption, / from which nothing can rouse it but some
measure, on the part of the Government, of folly / and madness, / such as that now under consideration. — J. C. CALHOUN.
ExERCISES FOR LOCATING PAUSES
Let the student copy the following, mark the pauses, and number them according to the cases under which they COme.
Mr. President: The stoutest apostle of the church, they say, is the missionary, and the missionary, wherever he unfurls his flag, will never find himself in deeper need of unction and address than I, bidden to-night to plant the standard of a Southern Democrat in Boston's banquet hall, and discuss the problem of the races in the home of Phillips and of Sumner. But, Mr. President, if a purpose to speak in perfect frankness and sincerity; if earnest understanding of the vast interests involved; if a consecrating sense of what disaster may follow further misunderstanding and estrangement, if these may be counted to steady undisciplined speech and to strengthen an untried arm, --then, Sir, I find courage to proceed. – GRADY.
If I were to tell you the story of Napoleon, I should take it from the lips of Frenchmen, who find no language rich enough to paint the great captain of the nineteenth century. Were I to tell you the story of Washington, I should take it from your hearts, – you, who think no marble white enough on which to carve the name of the Father of his country. But I am to tell you the story of a negro, Toussaint L'Ouverture, who has left hardly one written line. I am to glean it from the reluctant testimony of his enemies, men who despised him because he was a negro and a slave, hated him because he had beaten them in battle.
Cromwell manufactured his own army. Napoleon, at the age of twenty-seven, was placed at the head of the best troops Europe ever saw. Cromwell never saw an army till he was forty; this man never saw a soldier till he was fifty. Cromwell manufactured his own army — out of what? Englishmen — the best blood in Europe. Out of the middle class of Englishmen, – the best blood of the Island. And with it he conquered what? Englishmen, – their equals. This man manufactured his army out of what? Out of what you call the despicable race of negroes, debased, demoralized, by two hundred years of slavery, one hundred thousand of them imported into the island within four years, unable to speak a dialect intelligible even to each other. Yet out of this mixed, and, as you say, despicable mass he forged a thunderbolt, and hurled it at what? At the proudest blood in Europe, the Spaniard, and sent him home conquered ; at the most warlike blood in Europe, the French, and put them under his feet; at the pluckiest blood in Europe, the English, and they skulked home to Jamaica. Now, if Cromwell was a general, at least this man was a soldier.
Now, blue-eyed Saxon, proud of your race, go back with me to the commencement of the century, and select what statesman you please.