Speech and Song : Study of their Origin and Development
Literature and Knowledge Publishing
Date de publication

Speech and Song : Study of their Origin and Development

Literature and Knowledge Publishing

AideEAN13 : 9782366597714
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“In dealing with the two great forms of local utterance, it will be most
convenient to take them in their historical, or at any rate their logical,
order. Whatever "native wood-notes wild" our hypothetical half-human ancestor
may have "warbled" by way of love-ditties before he taught himself to speak,
there is no doubt that singing as an art is a later development than
articulate speech, without which, indeed, song would be like a body without a
soul. I will, therefore, treat of speech first; and it will clear the ground
if I begin with a definition. Physiologically, speech is the power of
modifying vocal sound by breaking it up into distinct elements, and molding
it, if I may say so, into different forms. Speech, in this sense, is the
universal faculty of which the various languages by means of which men hold
converse with each other are the particular manifestations. Speech is the
abstract genus, language the concrete species...The mechanism of voice has
already been described, but, for the sake of clearness, it may be well to
recall the three essential elements in its production: 1) the air-blast, or
motive power; 2) the vibrating reed, or tone-producing apparatus; 3) the
sounding-board, or re-enforcing cavities. These, to parody a well-worn
physiological metaphor, are the three legs of the tripod of voice; defect in,
or mismanagement of, any one of them is fatal to the musical efficiency of the
vocal instrument...”

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