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TO THE HON.

WILLIAM C. PRESTON,

MEMBER OF THE UNITED STATES SENATE FROM SOUTH

CAROLINA,

THE MODEL OF THE EXTEMPORANEOUS ORATOR, AND

THE ARDENT AND FEARLESS PATRIOT,

THIS WORK,

AN HUMBLE ATTEMPT TO TEACH THAT ART WHICH IS THE

MASTER-POWER OF THE STATESMAN, THE

ADVOCATE AND THE PREACHER,

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IS MOST RESPECTFULLY INSCRIBED.

Maximus vero studiorum fructus est, et velut proemium quoddam amplissimum longi laboris, ex tempore dicendi facultas.-Quinct.

Magno in populo cum sæpe coorta est
Seditio, sævitque animis ignobile vulgus,
Jamque faces et saxa volant, furor arma ministrat;
Tum, pietate gravem ac meritis si fortè virum quem
Conspexêre, silent, arrectisque auribus astant:
Ille regit dictis animos, et pectora mulcet.–VIRGIL.

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PREFACE.

Among the endowments with which human nature is invested, the faculty of speech must be regarded as eminently valuable. The endearments of friendship, the tenderness of sympathy and the interchange of convenience yield alike their testimony and homage to the utility of oral communication. But when this faculty is viewed in that excellence of which it is susceptible, at once subduing the prejudices and expanding the minds of men, its powers and its possessor become equal objects of wonder and

reverence.

To facilitate this exalted improvement of our common intellcct is an object of too much importance not to be desired. An attempt therefore to render the art of oratory susceptible of tuition, las a claim on indulgence which the difficulty of the undertaking seems peculiarly to justify. Should it be the fortune of the author of this Treatise to succeed in his arduous effort, he will derive many pleasing reflections from its publication.

For the general scope of the work the author refers his reader to the Introduction; assuring him that it ought to be carefully perused before he proceeds further in his examination. With the view of affording the student an opportunity of considering the value and utility of the art, this portion of the following pages has been written with greater regard to perspicuity than elegance.

The intent of the First Part of the work is to inculcate correctness in articulation, accent, emphasis, pauses, tones and gesture. The instructions given for these preliminary attainments may have an appearance of puerility ; but the evident deficiency in the most humble of these acquirements, which is frequently betrayed by those who read and speak in public, will afford excuse for giving some directions by which error may be avoided in these subordinate qualifications. The single words which are set down for separate enunciation, will, it is believed, be found to be the best exercise that could be devised for attaining a clear articulation. The contrast of words having v and w for their respective initials, and of those with an aspirate, against words having no aspirate, but otherwise similar, has a manifest utility. The short sentences are introduced, not as models of tasteful writing, but as initiatory exercises upon the pauses which are to be observed in correct reading and speaking. It may be proper to remember, that those to whom such humble directions are not wanting, may pass them; and that for this purpose they are kept in an excl sive part of the work.

An objection may be made to a deficiency of taste in some of the selections in the commencement of the Second Part of the work. These selections are intended, not as examples of elegant composition, but as exercises of dis. crimination and retention, and as

means of exciting fluency in oral expression. In making them, it was necessary to begin with narrative,

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