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But these gestures of emphasis are rarely used pure and simple. They are generally combined with gestures of imitation, or with those of locality; the power of the gesture somewhat depending, in almost every instance, on the display of bodily power; and the display of bodily power keeping pace, for the most part, with the intensity of mental action.
I tell you, though you, though all the world, though an angel from heaven, should declare the truth of it, I would not believe it.
locating child, citizen, alderman, mayor, governor, president. They may be located side by side, beginning with child in front at about the height of the elbow, and passing, one by one, to the right, placing president about the fourth part of a circle from child. Or they may be located in front, one above the other, child being placed a little lower than the elbow, and the president placed, by the hand and arm extended up at an angle of about 45° with the plane of the horizon. Or a successively higher position may be combined with lateral positions successively more to the right ; so that the hand should rise diagonally from the low front to the high side position at the full length of the arm held at an angle of about 45° with the plane of the horizon.
Again, gestures of imitation may be used in these consecutive sentences ; gestures of checking, repulsing, putting down, overthrowing, crushing, and hurling. These imitative gestures may be made with successively higher degrees of force, as we proceed to show.
Preparation having been made for an emphatic gesture at the very beginning of this sentence, by raising the hand as high as the head on the words I tell you, there should be a somewhat emphatic stroke forward in the direction of the individuals addressed, the hand at the close of the blow, (which may be struck on the second you,) resting at or a little below the height of the elbow. From the second though to the word world, the hand is engaged in making an outward sweep, a little above the horizontal line ; and on the word world, which is quite emphatic, this outward sweep terminates, it having become almost a blow. On the words though an angel, the hand is raised above the head, and the eyes are cast toward the zenith; and on the word heaven, a stroke may be made upward toward the sky. This last stroke should be made with a vigor proportioned to the earnestness of the speaker.
We give, in further illustration, the following extract from a Fourth of July oration on Education, by Horace Mann.
Remember, then, the child, whose voice first lisps to-day, before that voice shall whisper sedition in secret, or thunder treason at the head of an armed band.
If this were the first sentence of a speech, no gesture would be required; but as it is a peroration, and the speaker and the audience may be supposed to be wrought up to a high degree of excitement, a slight stroke, by way of emphasizing the word child, and a larger and stronger blow on the word treason, would seem appropriate. Remember the infant whose hand to-day first lifts the tiny bauble, before that hand shall scatter firebrands, arrows, and death.
On the words first lifts the tiny bauble, an imitative gesture, as of one raising a child's plaything to about the height of the forehead, the gesture also serving as a preparation. The hand remaining uplifted, the gesture on the word firebrands assumes a different character: a very forcible stroke, as of one scattering or hurling, may be made with a long sweep obliquely downward from front to rear. (Fig. 62.)
Remember those sportive groups of youth, in whose halcyon bosoms there sleeps an ocean, as yet scarce ruffled by the passions that soon shall awake and heave it as with a tempest's strength.
On sportive groups of youth, a wave of the hand, as if to indicate the location of the youth. On the word awake, a gesture somewhat imitative, made with both hands, lifted suddenly to the height of the shoulders, or thereabouts, the hands being raised from the prone to the vertical position. On the word tempests, the hands, which have been poised with palms uplifted to the front, are brought down with a forcible stroke of the arms to a position a little lower than the height of the elbow. The hands may close in descending, so that at the end, the back of the hands being down, they will be clinched, indicating great power. Remember that whatever station in life you may occupy, these mortals, these immortals, are your care. Devote, expend, consecrate yourselves to the holy work of their improvement.
On the word immortals - that is, on the accented imthere should be an emphatic nod or other gesture. On the
words devote, expend, and consecrate, blows may be successively struck with increasing length and force.
Pour out light and truth, as God pours sunshine and rain.
On the words pour out light and truth, an imitative gesture may be used, beginning with the hands near the breast, the hands being carried open, the palms to the front, in curved lines forward and outward; the gesture resting when the hands have reached the distance of the extended arm. The ideas being of an exalted nature, the look should be somewhat elevated; and on the word God, the eye should glance upward, the hands being all the while held in the extended position till the last word of the sentence is uttered.
No longer seek knowledge as the luxury of a few, but dispense it freely among all as the bread of life.
On the word few, a slight gesture of the hand, beginning, perhaps, near the height of the elbow, and passing downwards and slightly outwards, the gesture being imitative and indicating a matter of trifling importance, the gesture ending with the hand at the side and a little to the rear. On the word dispense both bands should be raised in preparation for a wide sweeping gesture to begin on the word freely, and end with an outward stroke on all, the hands then being extended to the full length of the arms on the right and the left, and at the height of the shoulders; the gesture indicating universality. On the words bread of life, another upward glance, intimating that the bread of life “cometh down from heaven.” Learn only how the ignorant may learn ; how the innocent may be preserved ; the vicious, reclaimed.
On ignorant, preserved, and reclaimed there may be successive nods indicating emphasis; the voice falling on each, and the eye glancing in different directions on the words ignorant, innocent, and vicious, as if these persons occupied different places.
Call down the astronomer from the skies;
A gesture of location, beginning with the elevation of the hand and of the eye at the beginning of the sentence, and terminating with the hand lifted high towards the zenith on the word skies.
up the geologist from his subterranean explorations ; The hand begins to be lowered on the word geologist, and the descending gesture terminates with a slight stroke on explorations, as if locating them below the surface of the earth. summon, if need be, the mightiest intellects from the council-chamber of the nation ; enter cloistered halls, where the scholiast muses over superfluous annotations ; dissolve conclave and synod, where subtle polemics are vainly discussing their barren dogmas;
On the words intellects from the council-chamber, the eye may be turned and the hand extended toward the supposed locality. On enter cloistered halls, another gesture of location,
a sweep of the hand towards the imagined place. So on conclave and synod. A look of pitying contempt on the words scholiast and superfluous; a gesture of contempt on the words barren dogmas, preparation having been made for the scornful gesture by lifting the hand at the word vainly nearly to the height of the breast, the gesture being imitative of one rejecting what is utterly worthless, the backward or sidewise stroke being on the word dogmas.
and go forth and teach this people.
On the words go forth, a gesture partly imitative and partly by way of location, the hand being carried from the breast forward and upward to the full extent of the arm; and then, without dropping the hand, a gesture of emphasis on the word teach, the gesture being made by a forcible stroke down in front.
For in the name of the living God it must be proclaimed that licentiousness shall be the liberty, and violence and chicanery shall be the