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INTRODUCTION. This collection is made upon homeopathic principles. The number of “Speakers” now published is enormous. There are often a hundred selections in one book. Yet the boys usually find only about half a dozen available pieces in any of them. It is believed that every selection in this envelope will be used.
The advantages of this method of publication over the book form are apparent :
1. There is no padding.
2. The teacher can help a scholar to a "piece to speak” without a toilsome search through dreary volumes; without the necessity of cutting long pieces down, or the risk of loaning valued books to careless fingers :.
3. Scholars gan club.together, and thus get a great variety of pieces at trifling cost;
4. In the case of dialogues, the, çards, or leaflets, will be duplicated, so that each speaker car. have the whole text without the expense of buying a bock, or the labor of copying.
GENERAL HINTS ON DELIVERY. The first thing which a speaker must learn to do is to make his audience think as he thinks.
The second thing is to make them feel as he feels.
We will consider only the first two; for, when orators wish to make their hearers do anything, they speak so directly from their own hearts that they have no necessity of learning a “piece to speak.”
The most that you can hope to do at present is to make your hearers understand what you say, and feel as you feel.
In order to make it possible for any one to understand what you say, you must speak loud enough to be heard, distinctly enough to make hearing easy, and slowly enough to let the thoughts have time to take root in the mind.
In order to make it necessary for any one to understand what you say, you must understand it yourself; you must speak loud enough, and distinctly enough, and slowly enough, to compel attention; and you must so emphasize and dwell upon the principal words that no one can help catching them.
If a word is essential to the meaning of a passage, you must force that word upon the attention of your audience in some way: by a long pause before and after it—by great stress of voice-by a gesture—by repeating it—or in some way-even if you have to paint it on a banner and wave it before their eyes.
In studying a piece, therefore, you must always determine for yourself what are the most important words.
In the second ptáce, in order 50, make your audience fee) what you feel, you must first feel something. Study your piece till you fairly enter into the spirit of it. Forget yourself -imagine yourself the speaker-at the head of an army-in the Senate-chamber-in the saddened bome no matter where. Imagine your audience to be persons to whom it is important that you should say something, and then say it to them. Talk with them as if you meant it. Do not merely recite lines which you have learned.
Understand precisely what you wish to say-feel deeply what there is to feel; then, by speaking clearly, slowly, distinctly, earnestly, compel your hearers to think as you think, and to feel as you feel.
If the words are spirited, try to make your school-fellows look ready for action; if the words are humorous, try to make them laugh ; if pathetic, try to make them feel like weeping.
Practice thus on your mates at school, and by and by you will be able to influence men to think, feel, and act under the influence of your words.