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the character of loquacity. Senfible perfons exprefs no thoughts but what make fome figure. In the fame manner, we are only disposed to exprefs the strongest impulfes of paffion, especially when it returns with impetuofity after fome interruption.

I already have had occafion to obferve that the fentiments ought to be tuned to the paffion, and the language to both. Elevated fentiments require elevated language: tender fentiments ought to be clothed in words that are foft and flowing: when the mind is depreffed with any paffion, the fentiments must be exprefled in words that are humble, not low. Words have an intimate connection with the ideas they reprefent; and the representation must be imperfect, if the words correfpond not precisely to the ideas. An elevated tone of language to exprefs a plain or humble fentiment, has a bad effect by a difcordant mixture of feeling. There is not lefs difcord when elevated fentiments are dreffed in low words:

Chap. 16.


Verfibus exponi tragicis res comica non vult
Indignatur item privatis ac prope Socco
Dignis carminibus narrari cœna Thyeft.angana
Horace, Ars poet. 1.89.

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This however excludes not figurative "expreffion, which, within moderate bounds, communicates to the fentiment an agreeable elevation. We are fenfible of an effect directly oppofite, where figurative expreffion is indulged beyond a just measure. The oppofition betwixt the expreffion and the fentiment, makes the difcord appear greater. than it is in reality*,

At the fame time, all paffions admit not equally of figures. Pleafant emotions, which elevate or fwell the mind, vent themselves in strong epithets and figurative expreffion. Humbling and difpiriting pasfions, on the contrary, affect to speak plain :

Et tragicus plerumque dolet fermone pedestri Telephus et Peleus: cum pauper et exul uterque; Projicit ampullas et fefquipedalia verba,

Si curat cor fpectantis tetigiffe querela.

Horace, Ars poet. 95.

See this explained more particularly in chap. 8.



Figurative expreffion is the work of an enlivened imagination, and for that reafon cannot be the language of anguish or distress. A scene of this kind is painted by Otway in colours finely adapted to the subject. There is fcarce a figure in it, except a short and natural fimile with which the fpeech is introduced.

Belvidera talking to her father of her hufband:

Think you faw what pafs'd at our last parting;
Think you beheld him like a raging lion,
Pacing the earth, and tearing up his steps,
Fate in his eyes, and roaring with the pain
Of burning fury; think you faw his one hand
Fix'd on my throat, while the extended other
Grafp'd a keen threat'ning dagger; oh, 'twas thus
We laft embrac'd, when, trembling with revenge,
He dragg'd me to the ground, and at my bofom
Prefented horrid death; cry'd out, My friends,
Where are my friends? fwore, wept, rag'd, threa
ten'd, lov'd;

For he yet lov'd, and that dear love preserv'd me
To this last trial of a father's pity.

I fear not death, but cannot bear a thought
That that dear hand fhould do th'unfriendly office;
If I was ever then your care, now hear me ;
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Fly to the fenate, fave the promis'd lives

Of his dear friends, ere mine be made the facrifice. Venice preferv'd, alt 5.

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To preserve this resemblance betwixt words and their meaning, the fentiments of active and hurrying paffions ought to be dreffed in words where fyllables prevail that are pronounced short or faft; for these make an impreffion of hurry and precipitation. Emotions, on the other hand, that reft upon their objects, are best expreffed by words where fyllables prevail that are pronounced long or flow. A person affected with melancholy has a languid and flow train of perceptions. The expreffion beft fuited to this ftate of mind, is where words not only of long but of many fyllables abound in the compofition. For that reason, nothing can be finer than the following paffage:

In those deep folitudes, and awful cells,
Where heav'nly-penfive Contemplation dwells,
And ever-mufing Melancholy reigns.

Pope, Eloifa to Abelard.

To preferve the fame resemblance, another


circumstance is requifite, that the language conformable to the emotion, be rough or fmooth, broken or uniform. Calm and sweet emotions are beft expreffed by words that glide foftly; furprise, fear, and other turbulent paffions, require an expreffion both rough and broken.

→It cannot have escaped any diligent inquirer into nature, that in the hurry of paffion, one generally expreffes that thing first which is most at heart. This is beautifully done in the following paffage.

Me, me; adfum qui feci: in me convertite ferrum,

O Rutuli, mea fraus omnis.

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Paffion has often the effect of redoubling words, the better to make them express

the strong conception of the mind. This is finely represented in the following examples:

-Thou fun, faid I, fair light!

And thou enlighten'd earth, fo fresh and gay!
Ye hills and dales, ye rivers, woods, and plains!
ye that live, and move, fair creatures! tell
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