« 前へ次へ »
be assumed when we know that his return had been noised around. In the sixth line “sick of the palsy” is the asserted phrase because this is the most noticeable thing about the man; but the next time this phrase occurs it is not asserted but assumed; we have it in mind already So that it could be omitted and the word “man” used in its place. The third time the phrase is used it is again assumed; it could be omitted and the word “him” used instead. In the following sentence from “The Merchant of Venice,” when Shylock refers to Jacob's bargain with Laban, Antonio says to his friend:
Mark you this Bassanio, the devil can quote Scripture for his purpose.
If we assert “Scripture” and assume “devil,” then the latter refers to Shylock. If we asesrt “devil” and assume the quoting, then “devil” refers to Satan. We can tell which meaning a speaker has in mind by noting what he asserts and what he assumes.
In reading aloud or speaking, the word that asserts the prominent idea is spoken with a falling inflection, but there is no pause after it, the voice goes downward and onward. It is convenient and suggestive therefore to mark the assertive work by a line sweeping down through it and continuing onward.
Note: This term “assertion” or “assertive word” must not be confused with affirmation; the latter is simply a statement of fact, and may use any form of inflection. ASsertion is the purpose to point out with the voice the significance of certain things that the structure has not made prominent or plain enough. Many people call this the emphatic word, but that is not the best term for it.
Point out and mark the assertive words in the following examples.
1. Then came to Him the disciples of John, saying, Why do we and the Pharisees fast oft, but thy disciples fast not? And Jesus said unto them, Can the companions of the bridegroom mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then they will fast. —Mark 9:14–15.
2. Great in life, he was surpassingly great in death.
3. And the Lord said unto him, Loose the shoes from thy feet: for the place whereonthou standest is holy ground.-Acts 7:33. 4. Cassius. Tell us the manner of it gentle Casca.
Casca. I can as well be hanged as tell the manner of it. 5. Roll on, thou deep and dark and blue Ocean-roll!
Ten thousand fleets sweep over thee in vain;
6. Ye have heard that it was said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy: but I say unto you, Love your enemies and pray for them that persecute you.
7. Breathes there the man, with soul so dead,
Who never to himself hath said,
-Sir Walter Scott. 8. A fool's vexation is openly known But a prudent man concealeth shame.
-Proverbs 12:16. 9. He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread.
EXERCISES Many people when speaking contract the muscles of the neck, and this strains the throat and prevents the free play
of the vocal organs. Learn to keep the throat relaxed. Let the organs act promptly and then immediately relax again.
Practice exercises 24, 26, 29. 37. a. Shake larynx by moving the back of the tongue
up and down. (Keeping larynx passive and re
laxed.) b. Make the sound of initial “k” (without emitting
any breath) by striking the back of the tongue
against the soft palate. k-k-k k-k-k k-k-k. c. Sing “koo-koo” on each degree up the scale, keep
ing throat relaxed and emitting very little breath. d. Sing “koo-koo-koo” up the scale in a similar way.
Study this selection from a speech made in the United States Senate, March 4, 1898, and mark the assertive words.
I am here by command of silent lips to speak once and for all upon the Cuban situation. I shall endeavor to be honest, conservative, and just. I have no purpose to stir the public passion to any action not necessary and imperative to meet the duties and necessities of American responsibility, Christian humanity, and national honor. I would shirk this task if I could, but I dare not. I cannot satisfy my conscience except by speaking, and speaking
I went to Cuba firmly believing that the condition of affairs there had been greatly exaggerated by the press, and my own efforts were directed in the first instance to the attempted exposure of these supposed exaggerations. There has undoubtedly been much sensationalism in the journalism of the time, but as to the condition of affairs in Cuba there has been no exaggeration, because exaggeration has been impossible.
Under the inhuman policy of Weyler not less than 400,000 self-supporting, simple, peaceable, defenceless country people were driven from their homes in the agricultural portions of the Spanish provinces to the cities, and imprisoned upon the barren waste outside the residence portions of these cities and within the lines of entrenchment established a little way beyond. Their humble homes were burned, their fields laid waste, their implements of husbandry destroyed, their live stock and food supplies for the most part confiscated. Most of these people were old men, women and children. They were thus placed in hopeless imprisonment, without shelter or food. There was no work for them in the cities to which they were driven. They were left there with nothing to depend upon except the scanty charity of the inhabitants of the cities, and with slow starvation their inevitable fate.
I counselled silence and moderation from this floor when the passion of the nation seemed at a white heat over the destruction of the Maine; but it seems to me the time for action has now come.
Every hour's delay only adds another chapter to the awful story of misery and death. Only one power can intervene, the United States of America. Ours is the one great nation of the New World, the mother of American republics. She holds a position of trust and responsibility toward the peoples and affairs of
the whole Western Hemisphere. It was her glorious example which inspired the patriots of Cuba to raise the flag oť liberty in her eternal hills. We cannot refuse to accept this responsibility which the God of the universe has placed upon us as the one great power in the New World. We must act! What shall our action be? There is only one action possible, if any action is taken; that is, intervention for the independence of the island.
But we cannot intervene and save Cuba without the exercise of force, and force means war; war means blood.
I believe in the doctrine of peace; but men must have liberty before there can be any abiding peace. When has a battle for humanity and liberty ever been won except by force? What barricade of wrong, injustice, and oppression has ever been carried except by force?
Force compelled the signature of unwilling royalty to the great Magna Charta; force put life into the Declaration of Independence and made effective the Emancipation Proclamation; force waved the flag of Revolution over Bunker Hill and marked the snows of Valley Forge with bloodstained feet; force held the broken line of Shiloh, climbed the flame-swept hill at Chattanooga, and stormed the clouds on Lookout Heights; force marched with Sherman to the sea, rode with Sheridan in the Valley of the Shenandoah, and gave Grant victory at Appomattox. The time for God's force has come again. Let the impassioned lips of American patriots once more take up the song: In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea, With a glory in His bosom that transfigured you and me. As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,
For God is marching on. Others may hesitate, others may procrastinate, others may plead for further diplomatic negotiations, which means delay, but for me, I am ready to act now, and for my action I am ready to answer to my conscience, my country, and my God.—John M. Thurston.
1. Study the following sonnet until you understand it.