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CHOSEN FOR THEIR VALUE AS
STUDIES IN PAUSE
Pause is concerned with the silences in speech. All those cessations of sound that occur in the course of utterance, whether between words, sentences, or paragraphs, come under Pause.
Pause has relation to both thought and feeling. If we listen attentively to animated conversation we shall observe that the silences of the speaker have a bearing upon the idea itself, and also upon the emotional attitude toward the thought.
Pause as concerned with thought manifests the relationship of words. In the phrase, "deep and dark blue ocean," if a longer pause is made after “deep” than after the other words, we understand that the ocean is deep and the color a dark blue. If this longer pause is after "dark" it indicates to us that the ocean is not of dark blue color but of blue, and that it (the ocean) is not only deep but dark. If the longer pause is after “blue” we understand that the ocean is of a blue color that is deep and dark. In each case a change in the relative length of the pause after a given word indicated a new relationship of words. Applied to thought, therefore, the listener understands pause as follows: the longer the pause the less close the verbal relationship, and, obversely, the shorter the pause the closer the relationship. The law, then, for the speaker, if he would be clearly understood by the listener, is :-increase the length of the pause in proportion to the irrelation of the words, and, obversely, decrease the length of the pause in proportion to their relation.
This variation in the length of pauses, it is apparent, marks off words into groups, and the task of determining this relation of words is usually called "grouping.” This grouping has been discussed and illustrated in a preceding section.
Besides manifesting the relationship of words, pause is one of the means by which the listener is enabled to grasp the full significance of each group in itself, and of the whole, both with regard to the thought and to the feeling. The speaker, appreciating this, will adjust his delivery accordingly. In respect to the thought, the speaker will increase the pause in proportion to the importance of the idea, the difficulty of apprehension or the difficulty of belief. In respect to the feeling the pause will be increased in proportion to the height or intensity of the emotion. The various aspects of these pauses are illustrated in this section of selections.
PAUSE AND THE INFREQUENT. [A word or group of words, while known to the listener, may be so rarely heard or used by him that additional time must be allowed in which to be fully comprehended. Ex. (Lord Beaconsfield's humorous description of W. E. Gladstone): “A sophisticated rhetorician inebriated with the exuberance of his own verbosity."']
The mind is suited to the position in which it is placed in the world, and the world is adapted to the minds which are to observe and use it. There is order in the world, and man is so constituted as to discover and to admire it. There is her;
reason in the works of God, and reason in man's mind to appreciate it. “If the laws of our reason,” says Oersted, "did not exist in nature, we would vainly attempt to force them upon
if the laws of nature did not exist in our reason, we should not be able to comprehend them.” The forms which minerals assume when they crystallize; the elliptic orbits of the planets; the hyperbolic curves of the comets; the spiral conformations of the nebular groups of the heavens, of the appendages of plants around their axes, and of the whorls of the shells of molluscs; the conical shape of the fruit of pines and firs with the rhomboids on their surface, are all constructed according to mathematical laws which have their seat in the intelligence and can be evolved by pure thought. When we ascend to the higher manifestations of life, in particular, when we rise to the human form, we do not find the same rigid lines as in crystals, nor are the invariable curves of the nebulæ and plants so observable; but I believe they are still there blended in innumerable ways, so as to give an infinite sweep and variety to the graceful forms on which the eye ever delights to rest, and which the mind never wearies to contemplate, and unconsciously follows now the one and now the other till it is lost in a perfect wilderness of beauty.
PAUSE AND INVOLVED CONSTRUCTION. [Some sentences are so unusual or involved in their construction that increased pause must be made to enable the listener to grasp the proper relation of each to the whole, as, “Deep in human nature, he thus demonstrates, and obligatory upon individuals, has been planted one great law.”']
Introduction, Paradise Lost.
Of man's first disobedience, and the fruit
Brought death into the world, and all our woe,
PAUSE AND LONG SENTENCE.
[Frequently a sentence may be of such length that the pauses must be longer than the normal in order to give the listener time to adequately comprehend the complete thought. Ex. (Lord Erskine): "If indeed he writes what he does not think; if, contemplating the misery of others, he wickedly condemns what his own understanding approves; or even, admitting his real disgust against the government or the corruptions, if he calumniates living magistrates or holds out to individuals that they have a right to run before the public mind in their conduct; that they may oppose by contumacy