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The application of prevailing principles of elocution to theatrical criticism of American acting: 1815-1840

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The application of prevailing principles of elocution to theatrical criticism of American acting: 1815-1840
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Statham, Charles McCorkle, 1914-
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English
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iv, 177 leaves : ; 28 cm.

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Acting ( jstor )
Elocution ( jstor )
Emotional expression ( jstor )
Gestures ( jstor )
Naturalness ( jstor )
Oratory ( jstor )
Passion ( jstor )
Performing artists ( jstor )
Pronunciation ( jstor )
Theater ( jstor )
Acting ( lcsh )
Dissertations, Academic -- Speech -- UF ( lcsh )
Speech ( lcsh )
Speech thesis Ph. D ( lcsh )
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bibliography ( marcgt )
non-fiction ( marcgt )

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Thesis - University of Florida.
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Bibliography: leaves 165-177.
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Manuscript copy.
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Vita.

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University of Florida
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THE APPLICATION OF PREVAILING

PRINCIPLES OF ELOCUTION TO THEATRICAL CRITICISM OF AMERICAN ACTING: 1815-1840











By
CHARLES McCORKLE STATHAM


A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE COUNCIL OF
THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE
DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY












UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
August, 1959













ACKNWLDGEN M S


The writer gratefully acknowledges his sense of indebtedness to those who have contributed to the preparation of this dissertation. He is sincerely appreciative of the help of Dr, Lo Lo ZMenMun who first suggested the topic, vhose courwe in American theatre history formed a background of material for the study, and without whose generous and friendly direction this study would have been Impossible. He is greatly in debt to Professor V. P. Constant who guided his doctoral program, acted as chairman of his committee, and generously provided assistantships for two years. The writer would also like to express his gratitude to each menber of his ooui ttee who has given generously of his time and adviest to Dr. Donglas Ehiner hose coses and stimulating discussions greatly aided the writer in his approach to the subject; to Dr. Thomas Pyles for his contributions, especially to the chapter on pronuciation; to Dr. T. Walter Herbert whose *ourses in Shakespeare influenced the study definitely, if indirectly; to Dr. Ala Johnson Sartt who veY7 graciously replaced Dr. Tow for the fimal examination; and to Dr. Tw whose course in the scientific bases of speech aided the writer in the analysis of vocal tchnique. A word meust be said in grateful recognition of the contribution of Dr. Wayland lafield Parrish whoe seminars first interested the writer in the elocution movement. The writer is happy to record here his gratitude to the Graduate School for the fqllowship which enabled him to complete










this dissertatio. Final *1 a word of apprciation is due ths writers **er for her -emourageiont and sport during tiWe YMu of study.


iii













TABLE OF CONTENTS


Pago

AcKNiLEWQWTS. *..�... * . . . 0 . INTIRODUCTON. .* @ 9 * * * * 9

Chapter

I, U5OCUTIONART BASES 0OF AMERCAN THEATRICAL
CRITICISM .....99999999999*9 19

II. STkNDA= OJF PRONUNCIATION R3ZJIRE (1 THI
ACTORON T AMERICANSTAGE . . . . . 38

m. CRITICISM OF THE ACT(R'8 VOCAL TEFHNI= , . . 5T IV. PIHSICAL ASPECTS OF AXRICAN ACTING . * . * . 83

V. PORTRATAL OF EMOTION AS A FACTOR IN
AIC3ICANACTIG * o * o. .# *. 107

Vl FIDELITr TO NATURE IN AMKtICAN ACTING . . . . . 127

VII SM OBSERVATIONS ON THE ACTING STYLES AND
TZCHNIQJS WRICH PREVAIL ON THE AMICAN

ILICONPH. � ... � � � � � �� � � � � �� 16�;













INMMCduTIM


The urpose of this study is to analls the acting techniques described by theatrical eritics in periodicals published in the United States from 1815 to 18o. This aal" i -ill attempt to isolate those aspects of the actor's delivery which received critical attention, and establish their relationship to the standards developed by teachers of elocution for criticizing these same aspects in the delivery of public speakers, oral readers, and at times actors.

Since the materials basic to this study are dranm from a singular type of dramatic criticism, it is necessary, first of all, to evaluate this kind of criticim as a Justifiable soiree for a study and definition of acting techniques. Admittedly, dramatic criticism is not crly difficult to defins, but its limits cannot be set in such a way as to be accepted universally. To Littlewood, the toren "dramatic criticism" includes "everything written or said about the theatre."1 Spingam takes

the point of vim that it is not necessary to know anything of the theatre in order to understand the drma of an age.2 Charles R. Gray, on the other hand, distinguishes between two methods of criticizing drama by using the terms "theatrical criticim" and "dramatic criticism." The "theatrical critic" locks at drama as it is performed in the theatre,
ISamuel R. Littlewood# "Dramatic Criticism," The Oxford Cq nAo to the Theatre ed. Phyllis Hartnoll (London, 1951), P.I".~

2J . spingar, creative Criticism (New York, 1917), p. 53.

1








2
while the "dramatic critic" considers the play apart from its theatrical presentation and bases his criticism solely on his reading of it. Oray notes$
Sam drematc critics may prefer to read plays umr the more
quiet condition of a private study--as Charles Lamb said he
preferred to read Shakespeare-it is perhaps not too such to assert that the play which is being thus criticised is quite a different thing from that which the theatrical critic sees produced in the theatre, nor to assert that the values which
the play possesses in the theatre, belong of riA*A to the full
work of art. Certainly it is to the many-sided art of the theatre that the theatrical critic of our periodicals mast
devote himself, . . . Theatrical oriticim then, is a species
of writing with peculiar interests and values.3

It would appear, then, that the breadth of the term "dramatic criticism" penits the recognition of two basic types of critical opinion, a literaturo-oriented criticism and a "theatrical# or perforane*-oriented criticism such as that .mplood In this study. In his consideration of what dramtic criticism should or should not ephaise, A. C. Ward calls attention to certain factors which invite a farther liitation of this latter area and, in essen ep reconds a concentration of emphasis on critical evaluations of the actorts produt. No believes that, since the first World War, draatic criticism has shown a tendency to becom "stubbornly litea% in that the plqvrightfs work receives too mch attention at the expense of the actor's contribution. To Ward, drama is "a composite art born in the theatre," and is only geminanly existent in the playwright's mind.4 The lack of this nmore

'Charle R. Gray, ThetrialCritiism n~hnd= to 12 (Now York, 1931), pp. 1-2.

4Alfred c. Ward, Seimns of English Dramatic Critiis XVII XX Centuries (London, 1Y4s5). p. 19.










comprehensive and satisfying kind of criticism" he attributes to the fact that the critics have folowed Aristotle's example too closely and neglected "the actor and the visual aspects of the theatrical art. Ward admits that Aristotle's kind of criticism served the purpose of Greek drama adequately since theatrical performance in that day was primary en act of worship In which the actor became a "celebrant . . whose activity and personality merge in his office and oonsequent2y are of no aomnt apart from it." He points out, however the secular character of modern drama subordinates the "thing dome and its mea physical implication" to the "manner of doing and the personal capaoity of the doer., In modern dramas then, the actor's perfomance becomes mach more important, and the actor himself becomes a "creator" and not mrely an "interpreter.*5 Wile not denying the existence and Importance of "literary" dramatic criticisms Ward would have it known that it Is equally Important to assess the playwright's capacity to translate that material into living terms. lowmever he notes:

This vliw.. * . my not oomund general assent, for writers have
long exrcised an awful authority and so long as critics ar
themselves drawn from the literary fold that authority will not be seriously shaken. But there is a good case for attempting to
shako it when the dramatic oritio neglects the unique thing he
should do for the familiar thing he need not do. Each generation
can and will undertske Its own iterar criticism, but when an
actor is dead every word of moment by his contemporaries boom*
precious. What would we not give for an adequate account by an eye-witrss of a perfenoance during the festival of ionwas at Athens in the fifth entry, B. C., of a Shakespeare perforane during the author's Uiiotime, gr even of certain later occasions
in the history of the theatro.0


.bid.., p. 3.

6lbid.










Theatrical aritici , therefore, has its own raison d.tre, as well as literary dramatic critcism, and the theatrical criticis which embodies oye-vitness aceeunts of actors and their acting techniques becomes an invaluable source to the student vho would attempt to recreate the actor's performance of a past ere.
This study of American theatrical criticism during the tvenVfiv year period following the end of the War of 1812 is united, therefore, to that which deals vith the actor and the techniques of his perforsanae. Indeed* there was little for the theatrical critic to vrte about except the actor. As Ffeedley and Reeves state, "N ew plays were not fr quently produced and the audience attended the playhouse to Judge the relative merits of the acting. It vas an era of rivalries.*? Extant theatre records testify to the fact that the saw plays were produced over and ovar, thus enabling the playgoers to know them almost as well as the actors, and lending credence to the critics's romars that it vas unnecessary to say anything of the play itself, since the readers veto certainly familiar with It.8

The choice of the dates, 2815 to 18.0s is not so ubitrary as to preclude a relationahip to the study of acting techniques. There are several considerations vhiach mark this period as an age that lends itself to a study. The first of these consideratioes is that it has been gsmerally neglected. To be sure, George 0dll delved deeply into this body of

70eorge Freedl y and John A. Reeves, A History Of the Theatre (New Yoark, 1941.), p 303.
4Sse, for instane, the New York Mirror and Ladies'Lite2r Gaette, October 10, 1829, p. 110.










theatrical criticism in his history of the New fork stages but not for the purpose of analysing acting techniques. His major omern was to produce a ohromicls of theatre events.9 Historians ad critics of dram have appeared reluctant to admit to their histories and critiques =a study of theatrical criticim, and those who mention it at all tend to set the beginnng of American dramatic criticism in the 1840's with the dramatic opinions of Poe and Whitman. Others onsider nothift prior to 1870.10 Barrett R., Clark for example, records no American dramatic criticism prior to 1900, dismissing nineteenth-century oriticima as mere accounts of acting and stagingp and iupling that, since no #dramatic theories" were developed# such criticism was not worth inding.11 Moses and Brown represent the period with only two examples of theatrical criticism, both fram the New York Evenin Post*l2 The research of Merrill Christophersen indicates however, that significant criticism vas published prior to 1840, the terminal date of this study.33 He notes also that of its three main categories, "literary," '"moalisti,' and "theatrical,' the latter* which deals with the actor's performanoe, cesprizes the largest part of that criticism. It would appears then, that

90earge C. D. adell, Annals of the New York stage (i$ vols.; New ork, 1927-l199), 1, x.
IOorrill G. Christophoreen, Early American Dramatic Criticism," Southern S2eech Journal, XXI (Spring, 1956), 195.
22Barrett 1. Clark, an Theories of the Dram with a �upplmant on the Americgn Dram* Voew York, 19147), p. 1485.
lIMontrose J. Moses and John Mason Brown, The American Theatre as Seen by Its Critics %2-93. (Newe York , 1934), pp. U-59.

1kChristophorsens Southern Speech Journal, XXI, 196.










the period in question possesses a body of critical mterials which although normal orer2ooked$ oan be eloyd to provid, an insight into the theatre of the tim, and especially the acting toniUes pecul r to It.
The chief justification for the study of acting in this period rests on the fact that it is not uOr a period of great actors and great acting, but also me In which the native American actor began to achieve stardc and to be recognised both at hoe and abroad. Freedloy and Heeves cal the period from 1813 to 1905, "Ameriams Ago of Actors.o"4 During the period frm 1815 to 1840, the rester of sta appearing at the Park Theatre in New York, hich, at that tim re s the awn of theatrical entertainment in this country,3 oeres as an indatim of this trend. The year 185 marks the beginning of a period which 0121 describes as follows:
This period showed to the Saw York public a muession of great
performers probaby mover sin-e equalled-a lit including
EMund loans Macready, Nalibrazz, Junius Brutus Booth, the elder Nathews, Charles loans, Charles and Fanay Kmble,, isme and oenvy
Wallacks Dcvtou, Hackett, Coopers Mr. and Mrs. Hamblin, John Vandnhoff,* Charlotte Cusbamn, Placidoe, Fann Rlselsr, lan Troe-the very noblest of the players and singers and dancers
of the past.LO

Not only was the period me in which mam great English and
European actos made their debuts in the United States, but it was also a period in which the American star began to emerge. Ed in Forrest made

*lFreedley ad Reeves, History of the Theatre p. Me~3

1501enn Hughes. A Histor of the American Theatre 1700-19% (New otrk, 1951)t p. 90.
2601611, AmsL 11, #46.










his New York debut In 1826, after making his first appearance at the age of fourteen at Philadelphia's Walrut Street Theatre. The sane year James H. Hackett, who later achieved fame as the best Falstaff both in England and America, made his bow on the New York stage.17 Charlotte Cushan, another native Amrican, made her debut in Now York ton years later. The influence of this period did much to form her technique, even though her career belongs principally to a later tim. The period from 1815 to IO, when viewed in terss of the great actors and the American stars who emerged to achieve fame in their own country and abroad, offers a wealth of material for the study of acting technique.

The period from 181% to 184O also falls within what histories

and criticism of American letters call the "National Period," a designation given to a time when the country began to establish itself as a political, social, and cultural entity.18 With the feeling that the nation could maintain itself among the powers of the world, a gnmine American spirit began to pervade the politics, society, and literature of the country. Following the War of 1812, the nation's periodicals reflected the growing feeling that America could develop its own litersture free from foreign influnee.19

Charrat has pointed to a similar unity in literary production between 1810 and 1835, claiming that "within its (the period's] limits,

alter Pritchard Eaton in Dictionar of American Bio&Mhy 9 .'. "Forrest, Edwin.*
18 win garrison Cady, Frederick J. Hoffean and Roy Harvey earce, The Growth of American Literature (2 vols.; New York, 1$56)x 1.. 231.
lPJohn C. McCloskey, "The Cangign of the Periodicals after the War of 1812 for a National American Literature," Publications of the Ybdern Lan.g! Association, L (1935), 262.








8

Bryant, Danaj Perival, Halleck, and Drake produced their most Uportant poetry; Cooperp Irving, and Paulding their beat fiction; Payne, Barker, and Bird their best playe."20 The advent of this "national" spirit not only resulted in an elevation of the state of American liter"ry drama between 1815 and 1840, but in the growth and development in Other theatrical areas as wll.

The period encompasses a growth pattern and a resurgence of interest in the theatre which Odell characterise as the "Pa1 Days" of the American theatre.21 Proof of this fact can be found by comparing the public's attitude toward the theatre at the beginning of the period with that which prevailed at its height. 181?, when the Aean lN.lyne began its department called "The Thespian Register,' the critic was forced to offer an apologia for such an undertaking, saying, in part,

We have thought it necessary to say this mch in vindication of theatrical entertairuents, because we are aware that many good people indulge in a prejudice against them. We are induced to notice the performances on the New ork boards In
the hope of purging from our stage those impurities which have
given too strong grounds for those prejudices.22

In April of 1826, however, the critic an the New York M noted that all classes of society were then to be found within the walls of a playhouse,23 and later that season, on October 28, it was

2Oillian Charvat, The Orifins of American Critical Thouit 1810-1835 (Phiiladely*hial 1936)s p. 2.
22OdI, Annals, 1, II , .

2AUerioan fthay M~gasine and Critical Review ted. R. Biglow), May, 1817, p. 51.

23Neaw York Mrror, April 1, 1826, p. 28?.










estimated that the attendance the previous Monday evening at the four theatres in Now York totaled eight thousand.24 By 1827, the Mirror had to employ a second reviewer, since it was impossible for one person to cover all the theatrical productions then cuwently rwudng.25 in June of 1836, the London correspondent for the Albion wrote his magasine that "No people on earth patronize theatrioal talent as well as the Americans..26 Further testimony to the popularity of the theatre at this tim may be found in records of the money which the star actors took in on their benefit nights. The popularity of the theatre was such that the star actors in contrast to the artists and literary figures who found it difficult to sake a living fra the practice of their art,27 not only found it possible to make a living in the theatre, but often aequirod considerable wealth. In 1833, the rio , eported that Cooper's "recent benefit" was the largest on reord, netting $4,,50, while on other occasions Payne bad received *$4',200 and Dunlap $3,194-50.28 The magazine went on to oompare these aounts with the $3,277.77 which represented the largest amount Kean received at the Drury Lane Theatre# and with the $2,802.50 which represented the most that the great Tala had ever amassed at the Theatre Frnoaise.29
241bid., October 28, 1826, p. 111.

2 .bid.0 November 24, 1827, p. 159.

26The Albion, or British, Colonial, and Forei We June 25, 1836, p. 207. For similar statements see the Mirror, September 10, 1836, p. 86.
27ChOrvat, Or.gim p. 5.
28w York Mirror, November 23, 1833, p. 167.

29rbido










While these and similar reports identify the period as one of distinctive theatrical wth, it should be noted that its end corresponds to a leveling off and decline in that interest and growth. By 1838, the Mirror vas noting the "frequent closings of the minor theatres. "30 The following yuar the sam journal reported that the season at the Park was a losing ons but held out hopes for the next ason.31 The critic's hopes did not aterialise, however, and he was forced to record that "in this city, the headquarters of the dramas the season has been particularly inauspioious."02 Other periodicals, such as the Boston Dial, in 184a2, noted without regret the coldness of the public to theatrical eohibitions, since it appeared that dram and the histrionic art seemed dead or dying.3' By 1845;, the jo reported that readers cared nothing about gossip of theatres and that dramatic entertainment was not popular.)" Later in the decade, the Literary World said the year 184? marked a low point of depression for for the New York stag.35 By the beginning of the forties, then, a period of theatre popularity and growth had cam full circle, thus establishing a natural terminal point for this study.

3ONew York Mirror, February 10, 1838, p. 262.

3mId., February 2, 1839, p. 256.
32Thid., February 29, 18)40, p. 286.

3)Frank Luther Nott, A N:Lo4 of A rican iaganes 114-1850 (New York, 1930), p. 430.
34Thid.

35lbid.








11

Another problm which the student of acting faces involves the

necessity for finding first4uad, eye-witness accounts of what the actor actually did to receive the plaudits of critic and audience. Some of this criticism is to be found in biographies of actors, in theatrical reminiscences of actors, managers, and historians, and in accounts of their techniques by the actors themselves. Caution must be exercised, however, in the employment of such materials, since the biographer may be biased in his opinion,36 or he say never have seen the actor perform at all. Actors have achieved reputations as "acting giants* e the basis of accounts handed down frm generation to generation, although criticisam written during the actor's lifetime does not provide a basis for such reputation.37

In order to avoid these difficulties, the sources employed in this study have been limited to those theatrical criticisms of acting found in the pneral periodicals published in Boston, New York, and Philadelphia between 1815 and 184O. Since this period may claim the appelation of a "golden age of magasinesR38 and since the againes reflect other factors of the age so well,39 it may be expected that these periodicals vil effectively mirror the theatre's role in the life of the timej, and reflect the standards which the audience and critic

3As was perhaps true of William R. Alger's Life of Forrest (Philadelphia, 1877). On this point, see Montrose J. Moses, .Th Fabulous Forrest (Boston, 1929), pp. vii-ix.

370denl, in, 87-88.

38mottp Histor of American Mazines, pp. 524-25.

39See above, p. 9.










demanded of its players. Furthermore, we may expect a generally unprejudiced view of the actor from these critics who vent to the theatre night after night, saw all the great actors in all their great roles, compared one with the other, and even at times fearlessly pointed out "improprieties" in their performances.

Perhaps the most authoritative study of this type of source material has been Frank Luther Nott's study of American magasines. Certainly his study can claim pre-eminence from the standpoint of its analytical examination of the content of American magesines.40 He has pointed to the fact that the quarter centur7 prior to 1825 was charaoterised by the rise of "special class periodieals,' among which vere those devoted to the theatre.41 These theatrical publications, however, were generally short-lived. In the period following 1825, few theatrical journals were publishod, and theatrical criticim was, for the most part, left to the general periodicals and newspapers.12

New York was rapidly becoming the polishing center of the country during this period. By mid-century the cess reports were giving the annual circulations of New York periodicals as fifty per cent higher than those of Boston or Philadelphia.43 Not only were these cities the major centers for the publishing of periodicals, they

40t is the "standard history of the magazine," and "furnishes
foundations studies and analyses for both general and special reference.' See Robert Z. Spiller et al., eds., Literary History of the United States, Biblio (I;IY io 1948), p. 69.

41at. istory of American Magasines, p. 165.

4p. 42?.

p431bid. P. 375-80.










were also the leading centers for theatrical activity, with theatrical

leadership passing from Philadelphia to New York seaatims between i80 and 1825-.4 Although the actors travelled extensively to Richond and Charleston, and even to New Orleans and the West, Boston# Philadelphia, and New York remained the nucleus of their activities. Given the supremacy of these centers in the publishing and theatrical fields# and the preeminence of their periodicals in theatrical criticim, it would appear reasonable to assum that the periodicals published In these cities reflect the best in criticim of the acting of the period. It is certain that those actors who gained arW sort of reputation eventually found their way to one or all of these cities and were consequently described by the critics writing for the periodicals. Such criticism, even limited in this way, will enable the student to cheek the critics' opinions in Boston against those in Noew York and Phild la. He may thus be able to arrive at standards generally prevailing and to ellminate, to sm dgree, the personal biases of the critics.

With Ntt's recommdattions of periodicals carrying the best

theatrical criticim of this period as a guide, it would appear that the theatrical scene is best reflected in the following periodicals. The theatre in Boston may be covered with the American Mothl Maa ie (1829-1831) and the New Engld alax' and Masonic, Magazin (1817-834~). The New York soene may be represented by the theatrical critiis appearing In the Albion: A Journal of News, Politic, ad Literature (1822-1876), the American Mnthly Magazine (1833-1838), the Amecan


4His, Hitor of the American Theatre, p. 90.










!onth& Magine and Critical Review (1817-1819)2 and the low loft Mirror and Ladies' Literary Gazette (1823-184i2). For the theatre in Philadelphia# the American 2Mterly eiw(871i3,Bro' Gentlemt'o !W sin (1837-18O), and the Port Folio (1801-1827) give the beat co1~rage.4>
Beyond the problms of establishing time lUmits and soures

suitable for a study of aoting, it becomes necessary to consider still another factor. Acting in not an easy subject to discuss. A part of the difficulty arises from the fact that, although they may have changed their content and maning in the usantius, ters which presunably identify or characterize styles of acting are handed down from generation to generation. In an attempt to Illuminate an acting style of the past, a latter-day critic ma y assign to these terms manings which have been acquired in his own day. The reputation of the older Booths for instance, could hardly have been based on the judgeent of his contemporary crities.6 The eighteenth and nineteenth century critic.' use of the tem "natural" or "realistic" in describing the acting of Garrick, ZdA Kean, or Edwin Booth does not authorize the modem critic to place their acting styes in the framework of present-day naturalistic acting. The student of acting may avoid such difficulties b taking into consideration only eye-witness accounts of actors. But even these accounts do not always solve the problems involved in the process of characterizing so evanescent a thing a acting. The actor leaves

1~ ott, Arcanha s ,# pp. 16%47; 27,

S6odel, Annals, in, 87.










behind him no coerete product by which the futue critic or historian can test the meanings of the terms which represent judgments on his actual performance. If the critic is to illumnate the histrionic art of another age, he mast discover a set of criteria belonging to that agej a set of criteria vhich will provide an understanding of the natiu of its standards of exellenoe.

If we accept Paul Koselka' a view that the standard criterion for good acting in any age seems to be the extent to vheh the actor moved his audience)'7 the method vhieh the critic adopts for the study of acting mat be one vhieh will reveal hait it vas the actor did when he

-md his audience, and what standards the actor had to satisfy before audiencs put the stamp of sxcellence on his acting. Failure to employ these standards to discover the meanings of the term and labels used in the original evaluation of an actor's product may produce the sams weakhess wch George Kernodle has discovered in Helen Ornebee's history of acting.8 He points out that she did lttle to clarity the nature of early acting as a result of assuing, in spite of her discovery that every age has considered its good actors as "realistic," that "fo mal" and "lrleastic' represent two opposing methods of acting techniques which prevailed in alternate periods.49

47Paul Koselka, "Theatrical and Dramatic Criticim,, and Comn ta'ies on Acting,' A Selected Biblio and Critical Consent an the Art*T heom an T* ofAec.ctigt Arbor, 19), p. 23.

48ferodle is referring to Helen Oraboe's Backstage with Actors: from the Tie of Shakeeare to the Present Day (New York# 1928).

'496eorge Kernodle, "Histories of Acting and Dictionaries of Act-. ing,", Selec4KBiblio * 0 0 $ P. 50








16

In his critical omments on other histories of acting, Xernodle maintains that the method used by Downer, in analyzing nineteenthcentury acting, fares somewhat better, since he "uses a few concepts from literary history and criticism to good advantage and makes telling distinctions between several schools and traditions of acting . Kernodle adds that "until we gather more descriptive accounts of actors, it is hard to see how the descriptive method can be carried further." He then goes on to suggest various methods which night be employed in the study of actings first, "further analysis of aesthetic principles in literature and painting might throw a great deal of light an acting " seconds acting may be approached through a study of theatre conventions; third, a study of "convention--he diagram of communication" may give the key to what frealism" and "verisimilitude" really eapt in each period; and finmX2 by relating what is known of an actor to the plays which were written for hMa.l

The present study of acting proposes to employ a method which might, in Kernodle's trms, be referred to as one using the diagrams of communication" to illUminate the descriptions of acting styles, Actually a better term might be "paradigm" of comuncatiou-to use a term from the critical method of Nennth Burke. By"paradign" is mant, not a superimposed, artificial pattern, but rather oe whioh represents (as the paradigm of a verb does) existing patterns prevailing in the comunicative system. It had been the work of the elocutionists, for


5%",

51IUdo










nearly a century to search out patterns of the spoken language and attempt to describe them In such a way that they wuld provide criteria of excellence for users of the language. By the time the period of this study opens, the elocutionists had developed a body of principles and rules which they had refined and elaborated. These teaehings were widely known and accepted in America. It is not Improbable that the critic, as well as the actor, had cam under their influence and tended to criticise the actor's delivery in terms developed originally for th eriticims of the public speaker's delivery, It may be inferred that, in so far as the critic tends to describe acting styles in the same term which the elocutionist used in setting standard patterns for the orator to follow, a relationship exists between the two. When critics generafly depart from these terej, or modify their criticism in other directions, it is probable that the general acting style has changed or is chanping to such an extent that the terms describing the old conventional patterns no longer suffice.

In suemaz than, this study proposes to analyze acting styles and techniques as described by the theatrical critics in the periodicals of the three major theatrical and publishing centers of Boston# NM York, and Philadelphia from 1825 to 184O. The period has been chosen as ae whch represents the begIming of mara American cultural characteristics, and one in which the theatre developed as an Aercan institution. The period, one of great actors, encouraged the development of a body of theatrical criticism which emphasizes the actor's contribatien. This, in itself, makes it a period ideally suited to the study of acting. In view of the difficulties in the study of acting, the method chosen for this








18

study is ow which attempt to apply the conwntiona patterns of ommication described by the elocutionists to the patterns of acting described by the theatrical critic. Such a methods it is hoped, will reveal the manings of term as they were used in that day ad identify the elmats whioh umit to make up a given school of acting.













CHaZpTu I


�L(CUTIONARY BASES OF A1MCN T ATRICAL CRITICISM

When attpting to establish or defln the acting style of a period on the basis of prevailing commnicative patterns, it may be helpfti1 to bear in mind that the relationship between the arts of oratery and acting is an ancient one. Indeed, the origins of the precepts govorning both can be traced to a commn sauce. It is perhaps significant that Aristotle placed what commnt he had to make about the actor's deliery7, not in the Poetioes, a treatise on the art of the drma, but In the Rhetoric, a treatise on the art of speaking. After Aristotle, the practice of relating the two arts persisted. As Donald Lemon Clark has remarkd# OA31 who discuss oratial delivery from Aristotle on are given to referring to its sislarity to acting.2 While ancient actors left no direct written record of their art, their performances, we knovp were strongly Influenced by the art of oatory. In tracing this relationship, Cole and Chin oy have pointed out that

The earliest codified principles of public delivery leaned heavily an th art of Thespis. Precepts for orators, thus
derived in part from histriaoni practice, wr.e later erroneoaslj adopted in toto by actor.. Although we have discarded


1kristotle, p~aorcJ l140b 31 ff.; l~~b 22; l~3b 11ff 28 ff.; trans. W. =oA(New York, 19%).

gDonald Lemon Clark, Retoric in Gre*-Romn Edwatioa (New York,
l97,p. M0










the rhetoricians' books as guides, they still reflect the
practice of ancient actors and contain the roots of the
actor's tradition.3

Cicero showed that he was aware of the affinities eiating between the actorts and orator's art of delivery# and was himself Instructed by the Rman actor, Rosius.4 Quintilian based his instruction in voice and gesture on the practice of Rom actors. While Quintilian was careful to differentiate between the arts of acting and oratory, later writers on acting techniques Ignored that distinction and based their instruction on his precepts for orators.* This Raman traditions preserved throughout the Dark Ages and brought to �ngland following the Conqust, formed the basis of the English acting traditt.6 The rhetorical aspects of one phase of this tradition, the Elisabethan, have been treated at length by B. L. Joseph, and it should be noted that Flecknoe's hihest praise for the Elisabethan actor, Durbags, was that he possessed "all the parts of an excellent orator. . .. Betterton, author of one of the earliest manuals for actors and a dominant figure on the Restoration and eighteenth-eentury stags, was said to have derived his precepts from Quintilian.9 In tun, Betterton's style was replaced by an equally oratorical one which, uner the

3Toby Col and Belen Krich Chinoy (eds.) Actors on Acting (New York, 1949), p. x3di.
4W,! Bridges-Adams, The sIsretible Meatre (London, 1957)$ p. 8.
5Cols and Chinoy, Actors on ActMg, p. 26.

09ridgesoAdams, Irrsstible Theatre, pp. 9, 196 ff.

7B. L. Joseph, Ilisabethan Actn (London, 1952).
8Quotd in Cole and Chincy, Actors on Acting- p. 91.

___., p. 96.










influence of the French theatre, was marked by "vocal pyrotechnics and exagerrated actions," *"silally cadenced speach," and "monotonous declamation."1O According to N rdoch, before th advent of Garriok, Engliah acting was maAed by a mannrism vhieh reflected the old chanting tone of the church and the collegians' concept of Greek and Rausm dignity.11
The eigrsenth century itself became an era when "deolsmation roared and passion slept.8" This# the century in vhioh the English elocution moveent had its period of greatest development, if not its beginning, was characterized by dramatic criticism vhich was " main2 concemed with the actor's adherence to tradition handed down from Shakespeare's oompzLy1 3 a tradition already noted for its oratorical aspects. In spite of the widely-hailed "natural style" of Oarrick, the critic of the period continmed to praise the actor "for preserving the accents and gestures of his predees8r."

It vas this acting tradition, with its oratorical trademarks and origins that the first English actors brouht to America and which vas preserved through +he flt part of the nineteenth century. A Boston critic noted that Cooper's performance of Yeobe+h on November 9, 1818 wa o"not marred by a single e d . . . we ob d


101bdosp. 91&.

11Jaine Nurdoch, The StaS _or Recollections of Actors and AcII (Ci ni ati, 1884), p. 66 .

12Co. and Chinay Actors on Acting p.

11ie, po96.
241bido p. 96.










his rigid adherence to the commonly received punctuation. . .. Indeed, Nurdoch describes a "teapot 'style" of acting still to be found on the Am rican stage in the 1830's. 71n this style of acting a ohant.. ing tons of voice accompanied the formal gesture of e hand on the hip# the other hand moving in curved lines gradually de"eing to the In such a tradition of acting, direct comunication with the audience made illusionistic charter portrayal impossible, and the actor became a performerj, exhibiting himself rather than identifying himself with a charaeter.J The clos. relationship between this styles in which the actor declaimed his lima directly to the audience, and that of the orator is obvious* It is not surprising then to find the elocutionist of this period holding up the actor as the model which the aspiring

*rator should imitatae much as Quintilian had don eenturies before.

The use of oratorical precepts in a study of nineteenth-century American acting tehnaques nee not, however, rest solely on the basis of the traditional relationship between these two arts. There are other factors in the period from 183$ to 18140 which estabALsh a common ground between the arts of oratory and acting and make an oratorical analysis of theatrical performers not only feasible, but perhaps the best method for determ-uing the components of the acting styles of the ti, The acting under eonaideratim, and the descriptions and evaluations of it, originated at a moment in Americats cultural history vhen publU performnes of actors, orators, oral readers, ministrs, lawyers, and

ISWrdoch, r p. (49.

16Jhn. Gaumner, Form and Xdes, in Mlodern Theatre (New York, 1956), pp. 24-26.










ofters vo had occasion to speak in public were being criticisd on the basis of a set of standards put forth by the znglsh elocutionists This criticism, as it was directed to the orator, became in many cases "dramatic." In his examination of this "dramatic criticism of oratory and of the critics vho analysed oral delivery in the periodicals of nineteenth-century America# Barnett basker illo came to the conclusions

Critics admired mhat it vas fashionable to admire, and in a
manner acceptable at the tine. Speaker. obliged by producing
oratory of the kind that vas admired. Rhetoricians and schoolmaters observed groat orators in action and formulated principles on the basis of that they saw. In such a continuous
chain it is impossible to distinguish cause from effectj all
were causes and all effects. Each acted an the other, and
together they contributd to the forming of public taste, to
establish the fashion.15

The critic not only respected the fashionable preferences of

the audience in the matter of oratorical style, but also reflected other attitudes and points of view peculiar to the age. Among other things, he evidened sonern for 'oorrecotness3 in lanage usage. It was a time when the use of language, the actor's and the orator's chief province, was being given increased emphasis and careful scrutiny. Dictionaries and gamre dedicated to "ascertaining" or fizing the language veoe readily available, while books written by the elocutionists were describing standards for "correct" articulation, paue, force, rate and other aspects of the spoken language. Prior to this times correct speech had been the prerogative of an aristocratic and cultured goups


17Narie Hochmuth and Richard trphy, "Rhetorical and Elocutionary Training In Nineteenth-Century Colleges," Nisto of E B ed. Karl R. Wallace (No .
18Baro Baskerrlles, 'The Dramatic Critiism of Oratory,' Quarterly Journal of Sech [QJ3s] XLV (February, 1,9%9), 45.










even in Ameria." In the nineteenth century, however, it became an insigfia of equality, perhaps on the assumption that he vho spoke "correctly could became the equal of anyone no matter what his rank might be.
This consciousness of language usage was given greater ipetus by the notion that one could become a powerful person by becoming an effective speaker. Periodlials, as a result of their frequent roferences to the power of oratory, vere making large sepents of the population conscious of the Importance of oral skins. Typical of this point of viev is oe critics published conviction that love of poer is one of the strongest of passions and in free govexmmentas eloquence one of the most honorable meas to attain power.20 The idea that throuh a ommand of oratory a person coul attain to any position was so pervasive that youg son of the day formed spouting clubs" for the purpose of "reading, debating, and recitation." The opening address, delivered at one newly-formed club, and reprinted in the %Mr, suggests the major theme of those organizations. The speaker, who signed himself "Z," pointed to eloquence as a way to paoer, insisting that "every office, whether of honour or molumentp Is attainable to the eloquent man by peorerveranoo."21
The elocutionary orientation of the speaker, actor and critic during this period can perhaps be best understood by examining the age

19Thoms Pyles, words and Wans of AMdrcan Enlih(e o, 1952), pp. 77-78.

2CeIorth American Review, V3 (July, 1818), 23,.
22yow York January 21, 1826, P. 206.










itself. The country was expanding,$ pushing its borders farther vests ward. A rmantic movmet, frly launched during the period, was extending the frontiers of the mind.22 It was a time which "domanled orators, ministers leocturers, and actors who eou2 ns themselves heard over the noise of a busty and vociferous populace.*2 Mott, quoting fm the low ork Athe suggests the extent to which that dnd was satisfied. Re notes
How sma3l a part the [orations ] are of the works issuing
frm the Buropean presses, and how large a part of our mme. . .. All sorts of public occasions call for these
discourses, and orator-s of afl classes and dgrees of
merit an called upon to deliver them. � Robb has also called attention to the fact that:

The oratory of this period proclaimed the ideals of
America and debated her problems; the 1yeem popularised the lecture as a form of entrtaient combined with in.
straction and the theatre# especial1y in urban centera
became an accepted part of the cultural pattern. When
Puritan restraints were somewhat relaxed, the public vbi
had been starred ovrlong demanded a gmerous and hearty
fare in all public speeh#

Camager# In his anlysis of the American mind, elai that the American of this era was In mV wVa spontaneous and not introspective, sentimental and fond of "wlling rhtorL in his orators,' and limned to Indulge in "orgies of sentiment' cm every Fourth of July and Deoortion

22"a-7 WArgaret Robb, "The Elocitiona 7 A omnt and fla Chief
Figures," Histo of Se nation, p. 176. See also Renur B. Parkess., e Ae New Tork, 19 7),# pp. 11, 187-188.
23Rebb, in Histor of Speeh Edeation, po 179.
2hH4tto HistorY of Ameian Napsines pp. 18146.

2eRobb, in History of Speech education, p. 179.










Da.26 Howard E. Martin, after ana L ing the speaking undertaken n these oecasions, concluded it helped to "perpetuate and reinforce a peculiar rhetorical tradition and standard of popular eloquesce."2?

This demand for speakers gave rise to a demand for training In elocution. The call was answered by nma, anmng thsa indivduals Vho, in choosing to become teachers, deserted the professions of medicine and ti theatre.28 Jas .. Mor-doch29 and Geor Vandenhoff)0 were actors who turned eloctionists. Lmel G. White, "a frustrated actor," instructed Forresmt, urdoeh, and the "silver-tongad" David Ingersoll in elocution.31 These actors followed in the tradition of Thomas Sheridan &M John Walker# English actors, who had beom teachers of elocution and authors of books on the subject. %e demand for instrution in the art of elocution was as great or greater in America than in the country of its origin. "Both the purposes and the books which the elocutionists wrote to accomplish the, were eagerly

26fenry Steele Coger, The Axerican Mind (New Haven, 19O), pe 24.. .. ..

2?owsrd R. Martin, "TIe Fourth of Juy Oration," QA XMIV (December, 1958), 393-4o.
2obb, In HisLoa of Seech Eduton. p. 179.

291n addition toTe age cited above, krdoh wrote -3 o 9locution (Cincimati and7J cii*k 18814) A Plea for the Spae ak rC"MU-ti and New Uork 1883).3%eorge Vandenhoff, lait S e of Elocutin (New Iosk, 1816).

31Lwremg Bartt, dwin poest (Boston, 881), p. 14.










accepted ini Anedica"32 until inevitablys a group of native writers and teachers was to arise and take oer the direction of the NOTveinst in this country*
In addition to its demand for actfos, orators, and individuals able to instruct in the art of peRa , the period also developed a need for criticism of the acting and the speaking being produced. Th periodicals of the time abound in criticisms of actors and orators. Articles in the Boston g!3, for instanose denvtrate how widespread the interest in criticism of public speakers was at this tims Pointing out the right of everyone to discuss the excellencies and defects of all public men, to comare their talents and assess their morits, the critic said:

The advocate the statesman, the preacher, and the j3wge, are subjects of constant and mte criticism. Now Mr. C. or Mr.
H. preached, how judge P. or judge J6. charged the jur7y, anth
ommon topics of literary and fashionable conversation and though there may be mch bad criticia and many erroneous opinions given,
yet, on the whole the disposition of the public to discuss such
subjects has nw advantages..)

Obviously referring to actors, he goes an to say that those whose job it is to amse must expect that the public will discuss their merits and defects with stil more fresdan,34 The following year the G published a letter from a correspondent who entered his protest at the jousaal's recst neglect of theatrical entertainments which he Md to read even when he did not agree with thm.35 In 1821, when Sean was to

of32trederick W, Nabeiuan$ "English Sources of Elocution,"x )Iistou of peeh Educationp p. 122.
33New !.IA G a, April 17, 1818, n.p.

34__d. 3_.id., (Febnruay 5 1819), nop.









make his debut in Boston# the critic begged the indulgence of his nuonteatwe going readers for devoting more space than ordinary to the theatre. He gave as his reason that it was "not likely that another event of equal magnitudep occupying equal portion of public feling and conversation, producing equal exitemsntp and generating so many dis. cordant opinions" would occur more than once in the life of an i vidua oditor.36 The individuals who undortook to satisfy the need or demand for criticism in this spoeh-dominated period tended to l** for an oratorical quality in the dramatic fan, to which they gave their atten.tion. Speaking of the theatre in his analysis of popular recreation in the period, Foster Rhea Dunes has noted:

The play necessarily conformed to the taste of the democratic audience. Shakespeare was the favorito vehicle of the stars -andA the theatre-going public appears to have hugely enjoyed
the dramatic anl fervid orator, "the rant and cant," which
marked their acting of the tragedies. It was an age of oratory, of theatricalim The actors were the rivals of Clay, Cahoun.
and Webster, and they had to outdo them at their om trade.37 A contepor cities reviewing a performnce of Charles and Fanny emble, reports that Nr. Webster attended the theatre. As soon as he was seated word was passed along that the great Mr. Webster was in the audience. The critic vent on to say:
Soon the audience were turning their eyes, opera-glasses,
spectacles on Mr. Webster. We left the theatre with a
settled conviction that Miss lemle, Mr. Kebl ,s and Mr.
Webster were three great person--and they ay gainsay us
who pleeas,38

361b. (Febroary 16, 1821)s n.p.

3pposter Rhea Dules, America Leamns to Mlay (N o k 1940)0

36isw Tof* Miro, April 6# 1833, P. 318.










skerv ..lop in his study of the criticim of oratoryin the period considered in this study# isolated a "ciamatio criticism, which he described as one which placed it. euphasis upon the speaker rather than the speech and upon the "startling apects" of the speaker's delivery,39 The actors on the other hanzi, competed with the orator for the andiee's favor as a popular idolp and was admired for his oratorical ability. It is likely, therefore, that the eleents ao to both these arts formed the basis of the critioim of them*
We ma then do well to inq iaor as to the nature of the basic precepts which the critic of acting adopted from the critic of public speaking, and which lent themselves so reodily to the critilsm of the actor of the t1m,
Frm the definition of Thoas Sheridan, we can derive the major elements underlylng the spoken product of the period. For nearly a century speakers and teachers accepted as their doctrine his concept of elo utc=0 which held that

A delivery consists in a distinct articulation of words,$
pronounced in proper tones* sutably varied to the soe* and the emotions of the ind; with due observations of aooent; of emphasis, In its several gradations; of rests or pauses of the voice, in proper place and well measured degrees of timej and
the whole accompanied with expressive looks, and sipaifiant
gestures#4 -

Sheridan was one of the met Influential ortheepists of his time, and his dictionat, with its descriptions of the sounds of the language and

39askrvle, jjB L, 6

)4Q ernmnp In Jistoy of peech Education, p 108.

'o1Thoms Sheridan, A Core of Lecture on Eccution (A ne .#. London, 1787), p. 10.










the system of notation vhich he vorked out for indicating them remained authoritative for aore than eighty years, bringing its influence to bear on Nosh Webster.

Beyond the doctrine and method of Sheridan, the critics of the period, as the actors tsmsolves, had available elocutionary theory and elocutionary system that covered myovs phases of the actor 's performance. Joshua Steele, for instance, had devisod a mears Of "recording" speech so that it could be reproduced by another speaker. This system of notation for "establishing the melody and measure" of speech indicated not only the sounds oMosing the individual words, but also the accent, ephasis, quantity, and pause.4 James Burgh, an the other hands studied the expression of emotion the very core of the drama, and put forth the theory that "nature gave to every emotion its outward expression and that from nature the whole art of speaking properly is to be dedued."43 He dre up a lisu of the varias emotions and attemptod to describe the "otaard expression" of each, John Walker contributed to the knowledge and standards of vocal inflection whieh, when emploed by speaker or reader, would enable him to speak eloquently in imitation of "beautiful nature.414 ilbert Austin provided performers of the period with rules for the use of bodily action in delvery. Be attempted to describe exactly every bodily position possible for the
e2Joshua Stesle, An Ess toward Establish i the Nlbody and Measure of Speech (London, 1775).

43James 3urg, The Art of Spea�g (London, 1761), p. 12.

444ohn Walker, A Rhetorical mr (gd An. ed.; Boston, 1822), p . %0 ... . . .. . ... .. . .










public speaker, assip each position and gesture a defirte use, and record these positions and gestures with a set of symbols which could be inserted into a texto thus giving a speaker or reader a precise gesture and body position which he could assume at ever omt in the speech.45 Whately, whose work also exerted an Influnme on the oral patterns of the per:od, insisted upon the naturall xannern in elocution, a mnner which he described as out in which the spealsr gives no thought to *how a thing is said,' but solely to th "sense" of the passage read or spoken.46 WhIle the preceding standards of effectiveness for the spoke word were derived from English authorities on elocution, the performers of the period also had a body of American theory upon which they could construct their art. One of the most influential of these native elocutionists was Dr. James Rush whose analysis of the voese into its elements was to have far-reaching effects in the work of Jonathan Barber, the actor-teacher Jams I. Yzdfth, and othersY Same American elo utionists took issu with the WhatVy doctrine of Onaturalness," as did Ebeneser Porter in whose opinion Whately's advice was wholy useleUss.48


15(ilbert Austin, Chirouiomial or a Treatiseo heoia
aeiv2 (Lcmton# 1806), pp. 29332.MonReria

P, 52 Ricthard Mhately, Elements of Rhetoric (Mt ed.; Loadon, 1%i6)# p. 3 2.

14JAws Rush, The P hilosohy of the Ruman Voice (1st pd.1
Thiladelphia, 1827); Janaha Barber, A raea o V.tion (New Haven, 1830)1 Ilirdoch, Ap^I1jic Elocution.

4ISmeser Porter, Thbe Rhetorical Reader (Andover, 1835)0 p. 16.










An examInation of the elocutionary theory prevalent between

181% and 14 reveals a concern with oral delivery in reading, as well as in speaking. The elocutionist generally dealt with the delivery of the speaker or reader =dr five sadn divisionsa prounciation of vords, voal production san managswtp bodily activity and gastum expression of motion, and how to achiee naturalnss. An aualquis of the theatrical criticism published In American periodical. between 13 and 1840 indicates that the theatrical critic based his JuMV ts of the actor's performance on these eawe elements. It would appear, then, that the five categories establishod by the elocutionist encmpas very well the components of the acting which critics of the period emphasized. Furtherore, the olocutionar7 precepts for pronunciation, volc pstre, emotional portrayal, and naturalness would seen particular suitable to an evalation of the ating styles which prevailed in the period under review. Not all theatrical critics, of ourse, emphasised these five elements in the same deogm but practically all relied an them as criteria for determining the ator's excellence of weakness.

This tendency to use elocutionary standards in theatrical criticim becemes even more understandable when we examine the extent of the actor's and critic's practical acquaintance with these elocutionary precepts. One actor by the no of John B. Rice became know mong his fellow actors as'Walker Elocution Rice," so closely did he follow the prescriptions of Walker's elocutionary precepts149 When the actor had instruction outside the theatre, he was apt to be taught by an elocutionists as Murdoch and Forrest were by White. In addition, those who

49*vdoehv The Stag p. 4A9.










received al their training as apprentices on the stage Itself wzs influenced by a style of acting vhich had formed the basis for Of the earliest elocutionary precepts.

The editors of the periodicals, who were als theatrical
critics, had an oven ore thorough gonding in the principles taught by the elocutionists. Th. editor of the Now RNI!RA2M#0l~ for example, was certain fadliar with elocution, since he vas able to criticize a lecture on "olocution and ehirenamia" and assert that the speaker's object mtus have ben to try to disprove Walker's system of elocution, a feat vhich was quite beyond his powrs. This editor, Jose"h T. Bucdnghaa, points out that Nr. Trner, the lecturer, gave roofs irmsistible" of his lack of understanding of the simple elements on which Walker's system was founded. With reference to a propri of readigs following the lecture, the critic constdered Xr. Turner "equaW31 fr a" In this category, and argued that
Nis prozmaiation (delvery] of sentences proved he did not know the difference between inflexion and e a and his
elsion of, syllables In blaA ves weroe to satisfy
the dullest ear that he vas entirely ignorant of the hamo
in poetical feet# and the omen Principles of versificatio .
On still another ocesion ve find a critic fawliar enough with eloeuticnary theory to indulge in an extensive criticism of both Rush's ftiloox*f of the Human Voice and Porter's Anlyis, of the PrinipLe of hetorical DeLve. The critic's ability to cempare and contrast the vork of these two nmn ith that of Austin, Sheridan# and Steele suggests a rather extensive knowledge of the elecutionists and their


5OV Enl Galaq, November 10, 1820, p. 18.










v*ks.! Montrose J. Moses gos so far as to imply that the critic of the period was so mch under the influence of ratoaical style that he wrote his theatrical reviews with an oratorical flavor. Referring to an example from the period, he says

There is the tang of oratorical rhythm about all this d d.nant over the critical understanding. The critic of the theatre become correct rather than illuminating* eept
in so far as he displays his own taste and shows what he is
looking for.52

Whether critically illuminating or not in Nosee's ters, the critic Is reflecting the taste of his age and suggesting tho pervasive influenes which led andiences to base their Judgments of the actor's perforeanse on principles of oratorical delivery.

The statemnt that the acting of the period is likely to be

viewed in the orator's term rests primarily however, om the evidence of the reviews themselves. That a o standard for judging these tvo art* did eist in the period is seen in nrous refrences to the stae as a "school of elocution and oratory." In July 1817, a critie, writing for the American Xg#nhl )agsnes. offered an apologia for the severity of his theatrical criticism during the preceding season. He stated that his Justification for such a sourse was to "emxite a proper ambition among the perfowmrs." He eoetimed

Is not our province to lecture upon elocution,--m the
Contry, we would gladly receive lessons on the art from
the stage. But the art ast be learnt before it can be
taught.... While we do attend



ppVOrth American Review Julys 1829, PP. 38-40.

59ess Forrest, p. 28.










the Theatre we will insist at least that the language be spoken corroctly, aT e who persist In violations of
or.tho-py that we ha.pointed out, shal temsulves be ,
properly designated
"Cato," of the Mr goes even farther and records an t (probably fictitious) of a coversatio between "Mr. Frost" ad "Nr Liberalc" om erring the "morality or araUtry" of the stage. Mr. Frost taks the position that the stage is the habitation of the devil, while Mr. Liberal argues that "the stags inspired our youth with a love for orStory, taught then the art of suiting the word to the action; the action to the passion; the passion to the character; and the character to the do. sip of nature's great authow."5 The critic goes an to say that Mr. Liberal admitted that not all actors have "the abilit# education, chanter, smimrP befitting their profession, bit he adds that "we hae xwis bright exceptions whose grace, accomplisuts, learning, talents and worth, have made thea meda of oratory; and have established the stags the best school for the public speaker*" Mr. Liberal believed, moreaoer, that if "mea of scise woul~l favour the public with a periodical critique of the stag*, the Aroan theatre might become a great promoter of the fine arts, ethics, and oratory...

Such an attitude toward the theatre persisted thought the period uWer review in this study. In 1831, the Xro critic bewoaned the fact that "a world of acclamation is wasted on the worst parts" of an actor's perfornce. "As long as the lovers of dram,"

53Amrican Mongth WagaMs (Biglor, Ju 02817, po 21.

%hiew Tork Mirrr January 21, 1826, p. 206.

%%bid*










he warns s sffer themselves to be so deceived, the stage will contim to be a bad school of locutionj, and itwill be censure against a public speaker to say that his r is #theatrical. 06 ive year* later the s magasine argued that the drema shoald rank above all the classick arts," as it did in the day of ancient GreOs when *It was cosd~ered the arbiter of contested Miden or promaiation, the school of gwdus, the scourge of vice* the gurdian of moral trath-the instractive as voll as asing relamtion, Suh statements imply that "theatrical orator was considered a mark of eseeuc. They ls son to Indicate that the critic is concerned that the actor remain the mod1l (as the elocutionist often suggested he should be) for the orator to fo3l.,, and sot it as his task to soe that he remaind a "pure and undefiled" an.

TZhe period from 1815 to l&&O appears to be am In ich a single set of standards governing the promUiation, vocal 1anagm-t bodiy expression# emotiAl portrayal, and conformation to the requirements of nature developed in the oriticim of actors and oraters. That such a situation should exist Is not surprising In view of the tradition which had related the arts of acting and oratory for centuriess and in view of the fact that an "oratrical" or declamator7 style of acting was preserved In America until about ISWD. moreover, such factors as the Interest in correct language usage# the tendsny to equato lead"hip ability with speaking ability, and the supply of teachers who bad bo

n6mI1d. October 5, 1631, p. US.

571bid., August 27# 1836, p. 70#










actors or who hld up the actor as a good model# served as an impetus in the establisbmut of a siA e Bet of criteria for the delvez7 of both actor and oato. In addition# the major aspects of the oral product which the eloutimiat analyzed were such as to lend themselves to an adequat description of the kind of acting prevalent n this se. Finally, the critic ' and ator's fmiliarity with elocutionary proeptse and the critic's desire to maintain the stags as the del for correctnss in speech, support the asomqzptin that by analysing thea.. trical, cticism in term of elocntionary principles w avy be able to characterlse mare xeotly the styles of acting current during the period*













CHAPTER II


STANDAD OF PROCIATION REQUIRED OF TI ACT(It ON THE ARICAN STAGE

"If Noah Webster had not been born, we sould have had
to invent him." -Thomas Pyles

The problem inherent In a study of acting styles and techniques is that of isolating the standards of ezeellenoe hich were applied to the actor' & product in a given period. In the cae of the early Minsteenth centre, when the American theatrical critic thought it his duty to purge the stag*e of its impuritles, improprieties, and Imperfectionsl one such standard involved the =tter of the actor's pronunciation. In his campaign to eliminate the grounds for prejudice agaWt the stage, am critic declared$
We have observed may Inacuraeles, particularly in pronunciation, of whieh we hae here, taken no note. We have not vished to appear hyperritical in the outset, but we shall
be more strict, hereafter, in marking transgressions,
especially against orthoepy.2
As a result of the general desire of the age to *fix* and "refine" the language, American critics of the theatre became particularly conscious of the variations in pronunciation among actors, As "watchdogs of

1Axerican Monthly Magaine and Critical Reiwfed. Re Bigloir], Ma, 1817, p 8. .. 138.
2 ~ .J-, 181?, p. 138.










society," crit es obJected to any actor's pronunciation which did not met what they considered the standards of correct pronunciation. One reason given for demanding that the actor conforA to such a standard was that many *fashionable people adopt the pronunciation of the stage."3 This statement supports Harder's conjecture that the prormciation of aetors infuenced that of the audience.4

hat, then, were the standards of prommoiation which the actor was expected to achieve? In answering this question, we must keep in aWnd, first of all, that in this period the tern "promuwiatioe" had a dual meaning. It could refer to the whole subject of the spealer'e delivery, as in the title of John Maso's work, An a on IZlocutiong or PronminiationaS or it could be used in its present-.day sense of referring to the sounds and accents with which i vual words are uttered.6 It is vith "orthoeey as it relates to the sounds and aceento of individual vords that this chapter is concerned.

Fittingly enough, e standard of pronueiation widely followed during the period was that put forth by the actor-elocutiondst Thomas Sheridans in his GCmp~leto Diction~a of the Englsh LanguaWs Sheridan's standard of pron ciation was that of the Quee Anna peried-a period in which, be believed, the pronunciation of the English


3Ae-"nmAh~ ML (Bigloim Amxes 1818, p. 138.
#Ja y Crane Harder, "The Influence of the Teaching of Elocution on Modern English Pronunciation" (doctoral dissertation, University of florma, 1956), p. 21.

, Jom Mason, An Essa on Elocution or Pronunciation (London, 17148)0


63heridan,, Lectures on raocution, pp. 404a#










language reached perfection,7 whatever he meant by that# It miht be noted at this point that his enthusiasm for these standa ds was not wnque; indeed, it was echead by Noah Webster.8
Sherdan maintained that, although audiences would ecpect a good speaker to avoid stamering, lisping, sabling, the use of too high or too lew a piteh, and discordant tons and cadowens they would also Judge him by his pron iation which, he said, is *caught" froia one's associates and is, therefore, an indication of the coupav the speaker keeps.9 To Sheridan$ the process of becoming a good speaker consisted of replacing a bad habit 'with a good ohm.10 In practice, this meant that a speaker who had a defect in his pronnciation needed, first, to become aware of that defet, and establish its precise nat=r. Then, it vas essential to have a method for correcting the fault and to apply it.1 Insofar as the actor of the period is conoer d it was the theatrical critic who took it upon himself to point out the 'defect" in th actor's prom iation and suggest a remdy for it, one often based on the Sheridln standard of correctness.
John Walker, author of A rtclPoonigDci

Elements of Elcutin,* and other works# was perhaps even more influential


?Thama.Shrdn A =].&tot Diation&!Z of the 1 enl angage (2nd ad.; London, 1789), Preface.
ONoah Webster, Dissertaions o the English Laneuae (Bosten, 1789), p. 30.

ASheod, Lectres on loutinon p. 51.

l(lbid., pp. 22-n.
Ib:d#p.51










in setting standards of pronniation to uhioh the actor was espected to conform.12 In so quarters, at least, Walker's vie on the subject wre held JA high regard. Literary critics found Walker's recosmendations wortby of endorsemaent For eule, the critic on the art Ir l a credited Walker with having a superior knowvledge of correct pronurwi tion since he was conversant with the best of London's socity.:13

It is entirely possible, hosevrr that Walker's, social environmeat was not the exclusive souree of his views an promniation. Like Sheridan, Walker had been an actor and sone of his recemendatios m7 well have been rooted In stage pratice. The crit of the American

ey thought so, at azW rate, since he noted that some person
had msunderstood Walker who "meant to give the precise, exact prommaiation of 2 M k in Parliazmnt, in the Pulpit, and an the Stage, but not the more careless and slovenly utterance of familiar oaversation.01
Walker not =4_- made an effort to standarise pronciation, but developed a system of notation to gI~id the speaker to correct pronunoiation.1 His mthod was to divide words into syllables, indicate the accented syWlble, ad am-t the sounds of the vowels.16 In carrying

p2John Walker, A Critical Pronounc Ditiona (Edinburg, 1830)1 Elements of Elcto Bso$ 60.

13Amrican Quarterly Review, September, 1818,* pp. 202-203,w
1.4biop. 207.

Z$Haberman, In History of Speech Education, p. 11.

2-6W&Uer, ad g PoouncinDictionary p. 9.










out his purpose* Walker began by "settling the tre pronunciations of those letters, syllables, and words, which are the most liable to be mistaken by the gnerality of readers and speakers."17

Because of the extent to which the early nineteenth 6MtQ7 theatrical criticism reflects Walker's standards. it is of distinct value to examine the general areas and condlitions included In his writings on the subject. In his estImation, a good speaker or reader would not be guilty of "too slightly sounding the accented vowels," but would tend to prolong the three sounds of a (e # ( 0. 1, ( 0J1. and of o [ 0 ]! nor would he permit unaccented vowels to have too slight an accent, as in the case of re~ ponounced as ('(dal 0' 3, event as "uvvent" aE 'n1], or sensible as "senubble" ('$SE)Sabi). Such words he maintained, met preserve the u and i from "indistinctness and obscurity,N andbe pronounced 'rfj )a- ], C('VFn , and C km#' S I ]18 Walker aso recommended the "liquid sound of k, Sp or g hard" before the vowels a or , so that kind is pronounced "as if written ke-ind."19 Speakers who chose to follw Walker were also advised to euplcy the "liquid sounds"m of t, LP b and soft a U]in the endings .tion, --ion*

-cion, while dues to become ck] in such words as verdure, and educate. In odious Indian, and similar words, the i was to have an "esound," making them f~ 6 1aS I and f1rd~1j. 20 Walker, in his attaMpt to

1742kr, Rhetorical Grammr, p. 17.

18Ibid., pp. 18-1.
19 T id., pp. 2223.

20Ibid,, pp. 24-25.










preserve the elegance and beauty of the language* also insisted on the release of final plosives and the pronouncing of! distinctly after st.21

When the theatrical critic's treatment of the actor's prounciation is exmined with reference to these riles, it becomes apparent that Walker's influence was indeed widespread. The critic frequently tur ed to the Walker recommendations in order to bolster his indictent against an actor who was guilty of what he considered a mispronunciation, One critic, paraphrasing a Walker principle, reminded the actors that f en u is under the accent, the d or t never coalesces with itj or we should hear tsuo s n o uo, enduare, and ~ In like mnner, a Boston correspondent considered such errors in pronuciation as aU for jiZratign for , and machre for as "vicious" as did Walker.2) The editor of the Boston M further revealed the crtic's reliance on Walker's Dictimay7 when answering an article in the Centinel signed "A. B.0 In this cont"orsy involving the word tb the editor cited as his authority Walker's Dictioary"the only ome we have at hand," and quoted Walker's note n this words D Johnson has very properly spelled this word yts . * .
not t as we sometime m it; . . . M.7rdn
. (writes] it as Dr. Johnson has don, and pronounces it
as I have done; &M I think not only more agreeable to analogy
which forbids us to pronounce e long, when followed by st in
the same syllable, (see Lest,)but if I mistake not, more
consonant to polite usa.7..The vulgar do not only pronume
the #Phthong long, but sink the z* and reduce the word to J


2lFbid., pp. 30-31.
22Anerican Monthly Magazine [Biglow], June, 1817, p. 138.
2Mew InlI alaM& October 26, 1821, p. 218.
24Iw_.., October 24, 1817, n.p.










There are maw other exaules of Walker's strictures being echoed by the critics. It is interesting to observe the several applications of Walker's racmmndation that pronouns in an unstressed position in the sentence be pronounced with an "e sound" for the exept in the case of ND a form no longer current in conteqorary speech, should alw s have its full value and Ao with .2 .Critom of the Xew ork Cm rcial advertiser praised Cooper for restoring "the vowel to its proper sound In defiance of theatrics affectation of softening it Invariably to 10 thereby injuring *seentially the pronunciation and emasculating the language.26 P" , in his hes M s likewise ocaim.nded Fennon for avoiding "the ridiculous, miserable affectation, of changing the sound of Z into tbat of ! in t, &f and som few others. ... *.27 The critic of the Awrioan XonA found a violation of Walker's rule for pronouncing a pronoun in a stressed position in the speech of Carpender, whom he took to task for "slurring where it should hae been emphatic, In which case It should rhyme with M*028 One critic, duplicating Walker's pronouncemnt regarding the fault of substituting w for y intimated that the wrath of the god oould not be as soft as one actor made hi out to be when he proclalmd "th vengeful will of anpzy Jove.29

2 hkert, !b ic4.l O-ramra pp. 37-39! 12-4.
26QuIted in Odell, Ann- IIe , 7 75.
27ibid,o p. 252.
28hAmrican NEM12!&y Agas [Biglowl, July, 1817, p. 208.

29lew York October 4&, 1823, p. 100*










While critics did not always cite Walker as his authority,
there are instanoes in which it is obvious that they were referring to this lerieographer. Cooper, for instance, was Indicted for accenting the word orison an the second syllable In the "very passage'tbt whch Is quoted by" lexicographers to prove that the accent should be-on'the first asyllble4ymph, in thy orisons/Be all my sins rmsambered.w00 The lexicographer referred to in this ase could be no other than Walker whose note an this word employs the smaw quotation and reads in parts 'r. Jcam tells us this word is variously aceet.ed that Shakespeare has the accent both on the first and seod syllables. � *",1 The critic is probably corret in assuming that, in this example, Walker meant the word to be stressed on the first syllablpe, sizce he folln it with another quotation fron Shakespeare which he mploys to shmv the accent on the second syllablse.
While the preceding instances indicate a direct aplicatio of, and Insistence on# Walker's standards, there are other cases in which the critic reflects the influence of Walker. It would appar, for example, that the critic on the American M2z&, who kept a list of the water's "improprieties" in pronunciation and, when space permitted, published these "defects" along with their "remedies," probably had a copy of Wal&kr's or his Rhetorical Grn r as his reference. On am occasion, the list of faults contained such items as the following,# to use the critic's method of indicating pronuneiation. "bea


304ew IP a - November 24, 1820 p. 26.
32fee Walker, Critical Pronouncing Dictionr, Ig.y. Orison.










rather than bin for been, po.1s rather than pos eas for p088es, rarther and a..._r for rather ad a p nts for g-rnts, and 1M for e.,a.32 The critic also objected to Mr. Hilson's "improper" way of pronouncing drove and bosom, and to the "inaccuracy" of Miss Johnson's pronunciation of obu a, and w. Other actors, he observed# were guilty of accenting indecorous on the antepenult, or capping to ,M,, and calling &r A ntead of w.3- The following month this critic's list of "improprieties* held such items as the "short i" of Mr. Fritchard, instead of the "long I' in owl, the w instead of wer for vere; the "short " ingpe [a handshake], hich must always have the "1 longer and the "short i" in ind hih requires the "long " in poetry. He also objected to Mr. Carpender's giving the o in combat the sound of the o in not, "whereas it should be pronounced like the o in brothers."04 The other violations of orthoepy included in this account were equaly in accord with the standards of Walker. Ites such as the critic's concern over Mr. Simpson's use of u for dubious, or the error, of Mr. Pritchard in pronouncing Zh, ahr, lance Uc (sict] with the a heard in father, and not ...with the a heard in hat . . . ," bear a marked resemblance to Walkerts recamndations. In this latter instance$ the critic noted

32 Ariaz Biglow], June, 1817, p. 138. It Is ipteresting to, tattherespellings rarther and arfter represent '" mid' a ['afte" and that the cri ticTW "probably boing Walker vho decried the use of t6.] for [a] in these vords; see his Critical Pronouncing DictiMMa, *.. Rather, After.

33Axerican Monthly ma zine (Biglow], June, 1817, p. 138.

31bid, Ju:ly, 1817, p. 28.










that "this, though not in the sam degree is the fault of every performer on these boards.*35 So far as this "broad a* is concerned, it mst be remembered that the actors being criticised were almost all of British origin, and although Walker, Sheridan and others had considered the change of [i] to ( CL] in words such as lance rather stf bath, and similar ones %vulgar,." it had prevailed in England.36
A further clue to the extent which theatrical concern over

pronunciation focused on areas or matters treated by Walker is provided by the critic who took Mr. Thorns to task for using the ending [-II1] instead of E-]n ), an articulatory "fault" which Walker also treated in his Rhetorical orsr. iWhile Thorne was a member of the opany appearing at the Bowery Theatre, the critic called attention to the tendency of actors of both the New York theatres to "suffer divers of their organs to lie idle even in the heioat of declamation. We hear bein, instead of p -ie instead of ,si eaun. . .p37 We might notice in relation to this point that, while Walker allowed the -_g ending to ryme with In in verbs ending with - , as brin, SIE he would not permit it in such words as the critic cited.

Not only is there evidence that Walker's rules for acceptable

pronunciation were favored in theatrical quarters# there is also reas

35Ibid. It should be noted that, if Mr, Pritchard did actually use the pronunciation [h&-.J for has, he was affecting it for reasons of his own and not because he fo1Ied any normal speech pattern of either America or England.
36America, an the other hand, emept for the coastal areas of New Englnd and the South, had retained the older eighteenth-century ta ( ] in these words. On this point, see Pyles, Words and Wa. pp. 666. __y pp. 65.
37N~w York October 8j 1831, p. 311








48
to suspect that they were soastimes applied over-sealously. The actor in same cases probably followed the prescriptions of Walker too closely, and developed patterns of pronunciation that became faulty by virtus of carrying the elocutionist's precepts to ridiculous extremes. As a case in point, we might observe the treatment of the r for which Walker had allowed two pronunciations, oe of which was a "rough r" formed by "Jarring the tip of the tangue against the roof of the mth, near the fore-teeth," and which was used at the beginning of words.38 This my vell have been carried to excess on occasions since we find critical reference to "an unpleasant habit of dwelling on the letter r . so that Og becomes rright, strang ter- ...."9 Additional attention is focused on this possibility by the fact that Murdoch, when dealing with what he called the "vibrant D," recogised the fact that am actors continued the vibration too long or failed to coalesce it ith other sounds, producing such pronanations as "e-r-r and rsoeL"IO

An examination of the standards of excellence against whh

the actor's habits of pronunciation were measured would seem to indicate that they were essentially those proscribed by Sheridan and Walker. Indeed, these orthoepists served as the major influemes in pronuncia. tion until the American dictionaries of Worcester and Webster became popular, and even these latter worke raflected the influence of the two elocutionist-lxicographors .41

38NAlker, Rhetorical Grator, pp. 28-30.

39Amrican montnz Nagasin (Biglowli, JUnD 1, ftop. UIl.
4Ofird ch, j Wic Elocution, p. 72.
42arder, influencee of the Teaching of Elocutio,' p. 83.










The preceding parallels between theatrical criticism and the rules prescribed in Walker's writings make it clear that, of these influences, Walker's was the more daminant. The eloctionisto who followed in the wake of these two figures had few specific recmendations of their own to make concerning pron iation. Nevertheless, by endorsing the standards prescribed by the dictionaries, they did add to an awareness of the imortanee of proumniation, thus making it a oritical measure of an aotor's skill. For exa l, although William Enfed, whose work was popular in the United States, contented himself with general observations on "propriety and elegance" in promnuneatios, the few specific recoendations he did make served to reinforce those of Walker. We find in then suggestions such ass "pronounce h where It ought to be usedj do not insert it where it ought not to be; and do not confound v and V,42 IUndley Murray, whose EngLish Reader became a popular American text*, further exmlfe this tendency. Yrray had only a few reanrks to make on the necessity for "propriety of prownciation" but, beyond that, he endorsed the dictionaries of Sheridan and Walker as a mas of "ascertaining the true and best proninciation. '3 In general# we may agree with Harder that the role of the Aurican elocutionist of this period in regard to prommeation was to give endorsemet to the authoritarian claim by the lexicographer of his right to legislate in matters pertaining to the question of acceptable prownwiation.4

lwill Enfiold, T (Philadelphia, 1817), p. P.

k .i-lley Mur ry, The ofglish Reader (Albay 18214), pp. 7-8.
41arders "The Inflence of the Teaching of Blocution," p. 85.










While the American elocutionist may have added little that

was now to the subject of pronunciation, he did have his part to plaoy In helping to make the period csiuswphpseven self-conscious.of the way in thich it pronounced mW voids. Granted, few of the Amrican elocutionist included orthoey in their elocutionaxr systems they nevertheless can be credited vith having influenced the actor's or public speaker's delivery, as far as pronunciation is concerned. Although their specific recomendations on the subject my have served only to strengthen the dictionary-maker's influence,45 they did provide exercises by vhich the pronunciation-conscious reader or speaker might improve his articulation of certain sounds, either alone or in combination with other soudd. Just as Sheridan and Walker had sought in their dictionaries to "fix" the standard of pronunciation which everyone should adopt, the Ameican eloctionisto who followed then desired, through the materials and methods they provided# to shmw "everyone how to use the standard language most effectively."46

It follow , then, that in a consideration of the role which pro.. nunciation played In early nineteenth-century acting technique, it is necessary to admit a second factor, the existence of a body of organised materiel designed to assist the speakerin achieving the standards set by the lexicographers. The critic insisting on the principle of a "find" pronunciation could stand firm In the knowledge that he vas


4*arder, "The Influence of the Teaching of Elocution," pp. e4-85,

41Mbid.,p










supported by eloutionary precepts of pronunciation generally accepted as reliable guides.47 The pioneer work of the American eloeutionist, Zbeneser Porter, whose Rhetorical Reader and An s of DeliveZ' were probaby the most videly-used textbooks during the early years of the oentury,8 ewemplify the sort of material an pronniation vhich was influential in the period. Porter's Rhetorical Deli z not only provided a good synthesis of the major principles of the English elocutionist on the subject of pronunciation, primarily those of Sheridan and Walker, but also was concerned with the difficulty of pronouneing cononant sounds, expeeially consecutive ones of similar sound, the influece of accent on vowel sounde, and the tendenc of speakers to slide ever unaccented vowel sounds)49 Jams Rush, another influential Amarican elocutionist, gave a geat deal of attention to an analreis of the sounds of the language. Ris Philosoph of the Humn Voice represents an attempt to make elocution a scientific study, we which led him to ana2& y the simplest elements of language# the vowel and consonant sounds. In tim, his folloers were able to simplify his highlym plex finding and to make his principles "teachabloe" thus putting then within reach of public speakers* readers, and actors.

The first of these teachers to employ the Rush system of elocution was

L7lbid., p. 8ii.

68'beneser orter, ji of the Princlea of Rhetorical e (Andvers, 827)1 c eaer 1835). Concerning the p iRity of thse boo, see Robb# in Hit of Speech Education, p. 179,

Wqforterp Rhetorical Dolivezy, pp. 25..32.








52

Jonathan Barber in his Graimmar of Eioeution,50 While Harber relied an the Rush terminologys, he developed his own methods, and it is said he required his students to practice individual vowel and consonant sounds for long periods. - It was thus that articulation and enunciation, elements vital to the process of satisfying standards of pronamciation, cam to have such prominence in the American elocutionary works.52

The American elocutionist# therefore, while he may not have had original prescriptions of his own to make for standardizing the pronunciation, did give impetus to the authoritarian viewpoint which sought to "fix" the standard of pronunciation for everyone to follow. The body of nineteenth-century theatrical criticism would indicate that the theatri.cal critic followed the lead of these elocutionists wa likewise endorsed the lexicographerf s claim to supremacy as an arbiter in matters of pronunciation. The writers recoomended to the actor that he have recourse to a dictionary to correct his faults. One actress, for instance, who was playing in Cinderella and invariably omitting the from the plural of steed was advised to use her wand to conjure up a dictionary occasionallyv.53 Another critic grew tired of calling the actors' attention to their errors in pronunciation sin they, seemingly, did not profit by his advice. He went on to remark that, so far as correct pronunciation was concerneds there was an "acknowledged standard# to which all

5OBarber, Grammar of Elocution, on this point, see Robb, in HiLstor of Speec Maitation, pp. W-%
l__ ., p. 187.
5 2arder, "The Influence of the Teaching of Elocution," p. 77.

ork Nirror, August 27 1831, p. 63.










could refer, and added there was no "calculating what improvement, in other respects, might result from a greater familiarity with their dictionaries." A Poluathos critic declared that actors who had "never committed the sin of looking into a dictionary" could not be expected to give vowels and diphthongs their proper sond.5 Such commnts as these, rather frequent in the theatrical criticisms of the period, demonstrate the degree to which the critic followed the elocutionist in looking to the dictionaries for authority in pronunciation.

Thus far we have noted the standards of pronunciation prevailIng between l8l and 1840, the critic's tendency to rely on dictionary prescriptimns when evaluating an actor's perfornance, and the extent to which the existing systems of elocution provided exercises and methods for improving pronunciation. It becomes necessary, then, to examine the theatrical importance of this aspect of vocal delivery, and the degree of emphasis assigned to it by those making Judgments on the performrs of the day. The elocutionist, both English and American, wielded great influence in making the question of acceptable pronunciation a major one in the period under review. The theatrical critic also gave a prominent place to this problem in his criticism of the actor's performance. The degree of importance which the critic attached to this phase of the performance may be seen, first of all, in the fact that, not onl did he direct his cure to the ordinary member of the stock company, but doled out his strictures to the major stars as well. The Amrica, for


5.Amrican Mon!x t MA Isine (Biglow, Juy, 17#, p. 208.

,Po!yathM# December, 1812, pp. 162-1630.










Insta e observed that "errors of emphasis and pronunciation were co ni" in the speech of the elder Booth.56 The Boston critic was far more specific and suggested that Booth's "pronuiation of the word varst cs# &a( I] would not be considered classical or polite in an adience of scholars. He drops the 'liquid r' and pro.. nounces them agt, no c...# Vigilance regarding matters of promnociation wes not relaxed# even in the case of an actor as firmly established as Cooper. He, too, asme in for criticism,# when, in violation of Walkrts rule, "He made h silent when it should have been aspirated."5
The Importane whoh the critic gave to prouniation is further seen in his insistence that his recommndations be followed. When they were not, he repeated them. A case in point is that of the critic who, in reviewing Cinderella a month after his first report of it, saw fit to berate Mrs. Barnes for continuing to omit the s from the plural of gje in spite of his earlier admonitin. .9 Another critic, who had obJected to an actor's sou ding the last sylble of ortentous as if It were R AotUb could not look upon the error as *venial" when the actor persisted in this mispronunciation. The !9 in 1820, printed a letter from "A Subscriber" who omplainsd of the discontinuance

5iOctober 16, 1821, quoted in Odell, pI, 12.

�7iie Mn al 17, 1822, n.p.

58Aferiean thl. Naasine (Biglow], Juy, 1817, p. 211.

59New York M September 10, 1831, p. 78.

6V~.








55

of the theatrical criticism in the past few issues. The editor replied that theatrical criticism had become "unprofitable" to actor and public alik# presumably because the editor's recomendations for the actor's MIM"et, like those of the New Tork critic, had gone unheeded. Instead, the critic advised theatre managers to "emple a schoolmaster to teach the rudiments of reading, and particularly the English pronumciation of the alphabet" to their actors 61

Theatrical critics of the period generally agreed that the stage ought to be a model for correct pronunciation. One critic, for instance, bemaned the fact that the stage could no longer be looked to for "the standard of English pronuaciation," because the ators had grom so lax in this regarid.62 Another critie thought, hmrever, that the stage should be presee d" as "an authority on questions of orthoepy," and advised the actors to avoid, at all costs, such errors as rhyming "Eurydice" with mic and making "Terpsichore" & thm-syllable word.63 Further testimony as to the importame which the critic placed on the necessity of maintaining the stage as a correct influence on prommnoiation is to be seen in the Amrica Mh critie's admonition that the actors should have "correct apprehensions of the dignity of their pro. fession," In making the stage "a school of rhetoric, at least it relates to all its exteriors,' in order that "it should exhibit the refinement of polished mannrs, and should be a model of pronmniation,N4

611w R ( , February 4, 1820, p. 65.
6 December, 1812, pp. 162-163.
631m York Mirror, August 27, 1831, p. 63.
6i&merican Konthl fat auin (Biglov], August, 1817, pp. 301-302.










In general$ we might say that the elocuationist was interested in the subject of pronunciation and laid down certain rules and recammndations vhich good speakers, readers, and actors were to follow. The theatrical critic appears to have adopted these reemiondatins and rated the actor in accordance with them. The early orthoepists, Sheridan and Walker* set the fashion with their prescriptions based, to saw extent# on stage practice. Whethr the theatrical critic had studied the elocutionist's texts or not, the fact romins that he did have recourse to their athority, and to the authorities they recom. mended, for the "correct pronunciations" by which he judged the actor's speech. The elocutionist of the period underscored the authority of the lexicographer in prescribing acceptable pron iations, and provided specific instruction regarding methods of isproving pronunciation and meeting these standards. The theatrical critic, consciously or not# followed in hs path$ Insisting that it was important for the actor to pronone words "correctly," demanding the stage provide good models for promneiation, and establishing a set of rigid standards for the actor's pronuniations, if he were to be rated as an actor M =elnoe.












CHAPT inI


CRITICISM OF THE AMRICAN ACTR 'S VOCAL TETHIQE "The blind mi�ht have seen him in his voice. ....'
-Aaron Hill

Of all the factors which the elocutionst observed and reerded in his anal3wes of the actor's and orator's delivery, the one that is. pressed his most Mnd which formed the major mphasbs In his teaching, was that of voice. The theatrical critit was equal influenced by th importance of the voca elemnOt in the actor's perfemaea eonaequently he, too, deted mch attention to the actor's vocal technique. That emphasis may have been fortunate In view of the object of this study, for it is perhaps on his vocal manageent that the actor's style, in the final a=4$is, must rest. We can probably say that, because he maintained this elocutiowary stress on the voeal eleaent in his criticism, the theatrical critic of the first part of the nineteent century would have agreed with Jams I. M edoch that "exoellenoe in dramatic art was main2y attributable to the actor's mastery over his voice. . ..
The term "elocution" was at tines used by the elocutionist and critic to designate the vocal elemed alonej as it was by John Mason, who defimd elocution as the "right managment of the voice In reading


2(urdmh, The Stag, p. 80.










and speakling.42 The importance attached to this factor is reflected by Sheridan mho believed the power of the living voice to be greater than that of the written word.3 SUirly , Austin prefaced his remarks on voice with the words# "all that language and tones can effect to influence the understanding and to win the affections depends upon the power of the voice addressed to the ear.A' The critics writing for the periodioals of the tis gave considerable attention to this factor, as is attested by a statement from the Irth American Reviw which pointed out that "the voice is the organ of the soul,' and "articulate speech the grand instrument of the orator. "% Furthermore, this writer was of the opinion that training in voice, rather than gesture, should occupy the central position In c ues of rhetorical Instruction.
Crities of the period's theatrical product demonstrate a

similar tendency to assign a major degree of importance to vocal management. Indeed, their writings indicate it became a prim factor in establishing the actor's ezmele.3oe. For instance, whie Wallak's portrayal of Rolla Octavian, and Hamlet during his 1818 Boston engagement was generally given the stamp of approval# the critic had a reservation to make in regard to this actor's use of his voie. "His greatest fault# the critic observed, "is a want of etorical accuracy

tlason# An Ess. on Elocution,, p. .

Sherldanp lectures on Elocution., p. xoii.
hIAustin, Chironamia, p. 29.
5North Amerianm Review, July, 1829, p. 40.










and refimont in elocution--a fault vhioh . .. cannot be counterbalanced by the finest acting in the vorld."6 The critic is here obviously equating elocution vith the spoken aspect of the actor's performao. and "acting" with its physical aspects, e asserts that the actor mut appeal to the "ar and the understanding of the audience# as well as to the "eye."7 Such a statement might well have been par,. phr-aed from Sheridan idwo distinguished between the language of tones addressed to the ear# and the language of gesture addrs-sed to the eye,8 The critic might also have been echoing Porter's tateenwt that the "tender emotions" wen c cited m e strongly by tones of voice addressed to the "ear" than physical signs addressed to the "ee* "9 A Phila delphia critic reflected a similar idea in his comment that Kean's consciousness of his vocal Insufficiency led him to coensate with violent physical efforts and caused him to play inordinately "to th eye . For both elocutionist and theatrical critic, than it would appear the manner in which the performer used his voice vas of prime importac. The matter was perhape best suMed up 1r oe critic eho denounced those who found physical strength to be Forrest's o9n merits Such a notion, he thought, was preposterous, for "an actor could no m play a

6New Rngland Galaxy.# December 11, 1818, n.p.


8Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution, p. 244.

9Porter, Analis of Rhetorical De:livery. p. 34i.

1OFrom a series of reviews on Edund lean in the ftiladelphia
National Gazette February 6s, 7, 8,* 1821., reprinted in Cole and Chincyr,
E - n-Acingp. 302.










spirrit.stirring [sic) part without a power of voice and a strength of nerve than a sculptor could make an Apollo or a Venus from the rough marble without a ehisel.ll
When theatrical criticisms of acting in the period from 1W to 1840 are anal ysed certain characteristics of voice are found to be highly prisod, and certain attributes of vocal expression are demuded of the performr if he is to receive the criticIsa commedation, First of all, the critic insisted that the actor possess a voice which would enable him to be heard throughout an auditoriums and that he use his voice so as to be understood easily, Such a requirement would appear to be so obvious that it would hardly need to be mentioned, yet both critic and elocutionist set this standard as the first to be met. One critic remarked that "Mr. Duff would be more distinctly heard if he would accuston himself to speaking a little nore in the hiher tones of his voice," since "noW of his periods are delivered in so low a tone as to be scarcely audible."U The student of acting technique may be left in some doubt as to whether this critic is recommending that the actor raise his pitch or increase his voxuw. Porter cleared the point up in his statement that "it is a commn thing for speakers to confound M& with 1 , and Io with sof. ence we often hear it remarked of one that he speaks in a low voice, hen the meaning is, a feeble one.

* * .0t13 With such a point of reference we my safely conclude that Duff needed greater volue in his speaking, not a higher pitch.

UAMerica on t against July 1, 1834, p. 360.
l:4ew FnglaM agoxy Febrmar 27, 1818, n.p.

23POrters Analys~is of Rhetgial DelierW p. 106.










Other examples froi the theatrical criticism of the period tend to support the conclusion that the elocutionist's requirements for distincts. and audibility vere part of the critics* yardstick for masuring an actor's ability. Thoe Non z critic, for exaple, had assured Mrs. Barnes that "to be well heard, the quantity of sound is much less inportant than distinctnes of artinlation.

0 0602 "Mossopj," a Bostonian correspondent of the ag3q complained he could not alway hear and understand leen."5 Another corresporAnet suggested that Kilner semed "to didain all avenues to the sensoes save the auricular nervs."16 in New ,ork, the Mirror critict, o hd been chiding an actor for "xttering,*" exclied In me review *W, Simpson permitted the audience to hear what he had to say in the charter of Charles FrankUn-Wonderfull--Wondsrfrl l-WondrflI J
In addition to their insistence that the perfamr make hiseif heard ad understoad, the elocutionist and critic added the further re. quirent that he do so vith "grace" and "ease." heridan, for instance, noted a ao fault of speakers was that of straining their voices to make thamelves heard,1 a practice encouragod, perhaps, by the por acoustics of the available auditoriwi. Likewise, the eight rules to which William Enfield reduced the art of elocution were designed to help


WIArican fottUZv Nagasne (Biglow], July, 1817# p. 205.

3.51t!ngandGalxy February 23, 1821, p. 78.

16,bid** Noaber 18, 1821, p. 230.

lyew ork Mir December 11, 1824, p. Z5.

l86heridan, Lectures on Iloction, pp. 116-121.










the speaker or reader to acquire a "Just and graceful eloution.19 Walkr's writings on the subject, which became the fashion in American elocution, typify this point of emphasis. He not only subjected the element of voice to minute analysis 20 but also defined the art of reading as "that systm of rules, which teaches use to pronoume [speak] with justness, energy, variety, and ease."21
Iineteenth-.century American theatrical criticism represents an application of the elocutionist's teachings on the subject of "grace" and "ease" in voice production, One critic, who had assured Mrs., Barnes that her voice was "universally offensive," went on to point out that "she must have acquired this disagreeable vice under an impression that In her natural tones she could not be sufficiently snergetic and audible."22 The Philadelphia critic, who signed his reviews with the name "Betterton," and whose criticism Hillebrand cited as the best description of Kean's acting method to be found anywhere, noted that "the greatest physical blemish to be signalized in this tragedian, is the imperfection of his voice. This is universally admitted to be harsh and broken; while sweetness is, by some, ascribed to its lemr tones."23


199nfields The Speaker p. 5.
20Warren OCthrie, "The Slotion Movement in &*gland," t eh monoa As [29., xV (arh, I Mt1 ) 2o.

23Walker# Rheial Gvmmr p. 51.

2Amrican Xonthly Magazine (Biglow], July, 1817t p. 205.

W3rom the Philadelphia National Gazettep in Cole wa Shincyj Actors on AotIlu. p. 302.










A Boestw critic was less kind. He characterized Kean's auwr of speaking as "the barking style,02 and 81 years later sP~e of the "eroakings of "ean."2 On the other hand, Clapp, another Boston critic, thoqxt lan 's voice "in the undertones bemd with mel.anchol y mwc026 But it was perhaps the Philadelphia critic who gxve the most unbiased opinion of plan's vocal products we reflective of the tendency to use "eaeN of production as a proof of vocal skill. He noted,

. . . it (tem's voice] is suseeptible of praise In the
emioiatio of passages of 8ol, emphatic tenor, whih
he does not comeive to require vehemene, of tone and velocity of utterance. His cadences are distinct and
agreeable in measured and deliberate spech; if his voice
is rarely nwsical it is not alas grating. . . .27

Another crtic registeied de4*U t when an actress left off the falsetto quality of vels sbe had been using and spoke in her natural tone.28 Fro commts suh as these, ithioh aboud in the theatrical criticim of the time, it would appear that the critic and the elocutionist were In agreement regarding the first two gsnral requirments for vocal emellene. They asked that the perforaer's voice be easily heard and understood, and that it have a pleasing quality.

Beyond these two general reqirments for the aetor's vocal

product# the elocutionary theory provided critics with even more specific

2iWiew g&lnd0laa Novemb~er 30, 1820, U~p
25ibid., Oct*er li, 1825, n.p.
26w. W, Clapp, Jr,# A Record of the Boston SAMn (Bostois, W83).. p. 178. . . .. ... . .

2?Fro the Philadelphia National gazette- in Cole and Chi ey, Actors on Acting. p. 301.

28Americ-ay Moonthly ftgasine [Biglow], July# 1817, p. 206.










attributes on whieh to base their Judgment of an actor's excellence or the lack of it. Actors of the day were expected to possess voices of great eums In the elocutionary theory of the tse, "ceepase" referred to that range of pitch above and below the governing or natural key of the speaker's voice and considered as essential to met the demande of a "spirited and diversified delvery."29 This might well account for the fact that even though a New York critic admired the acting of a Mr. Green, he did not admire the actor's voice vhidh, "deficient in harmonious intonation and extent, refuses to enforce the conceptions of his imagintion."30 A more specific reference to the critic's interest in this vocal capacity can be found in a reviw devoted to Conay's first appearane in New York. One critic stated the major reason for his admiration of this actor was that his voice was of "great compass."'1 In considering this point of emphasis, there appear to be reasons why "compass" of voice became a major concern of both critic and elocutionist. The performer needed wide vocal range to accomplish the transitions which constituted the "startling effects" beloved by audiences of the day. Porter had defined "transition" as a sudden change of voie.32 We take Porter'ts work as a good point of reference, since they were not only the most popular of the elocutionary texts, but also represented an excellent synthesis of the works of

29Prter, Rhtorical Reader, pp. 5

30kAneriean Mothly Na ine [Biglowj, November, 1817, p. 64.

31lNe York rror, mary 31, 182, p. 210.

32Porter, Agalm ix of Rhetorical Delivery, p. 120.








65
Sheridan, Austin# Walker, and others, especially as regards the element of voice 0 Wile transitions could be accomplished by a change in pitch, they vere not confined to such changes. Porter conceived of transition as embodying all that was concerned with vocal mdification;e that is, the change might be accomplished not only by transitions froas i to lowrpitch, but also from hi~and load to low and jg& or from a fast to a slow rate of utterance, or even from utterane to Eag or fram other combinations of vocal phenomena.33
A critic was probably noting a "transition" when he described Forrest's "burst of frenzy on the violator of his kinswoman's hono" as tremendouss." In his enthusiam ever Forrest's skill in emloying this abrupt vocal change, he continued, "... we have never, by a:W actor heard that, or a similar passage, uttered with such appalling force and beauty."*3 /ianther critic's estimation, Kon suffered by comparison with Cooke, sine the latter possesseds
Great strength and variety of voice, whose notes so opposite
In their character and yet so full of seaning, the transitions
from om to the other often produces the most electrical effect
upon the audience, Expressions of re bursting forth in the
fierce acents of his sbarp, naal tones made the auditor
start; and when felleved by a deep uadlerbreath of menance, or
same sentiment of fearful trany or sareasm accompanied by the
sardonic leer of a fiend, it was sufficient to cause a painful
shuddering in all who beard it.35
This critic went on to say that these transitions had a more peerful effect with Cooke, because he employed than less frequently than did lean.

33xbtd., pp. 121-i22.

3New Tork K , December 8, 1827, p. 171.

35Ibid, July 8, 1826, p. 399.










The theatrical criticism of this period abounds in references to transitions such as these, sad to the "electrifying" effects they had on the audience.

Closely related to compass and transition was the veal aspect of modulation, a tes which genral meant "variety in managing the voi(e.*36 The actor who possessed good modulation would never be guilty of monotony, Oa dull repetition of sound on the sam pitch," or of mechanical variety, "unkillful use of the greatest number of notes to produce a variety by frequent and arbitrary change of stres,"3? The basic constitutes of mdulation were those of inflection and cadence. The former had to do with the upward or downward "turn" of the voice an a single syllable,38 while cadence referred generally to the melody patterns employed at the ends of phases or sentenes.39

any instances might be noted of the oritic 's references to the question of the actor's modulation. When Cooper visited Boston in 1818, he was praised for "a voice of great compss, of most melodious silver tone, and susceptible of the greatest variety of modulations.N40 This critic goes on to say that Cooper's "critical knowledge of the inflwedons of voice, and his Judicious application of them, will always render him a favourite...." At the end of Cooper's engagment, the critic

36rorter., AnajLyss of Rhorical DejLvery- p. 93.


30Porter, AgalTsis of Rhetorical Delivery, pp. 42. 44*

39Enfield, The Seaker, pp. 22-13.

I&Ofmr SZqglandGalaxy. December 4#, 1818# n~p.

l4libid.










commented that "Uis voice, capable of almost every variety of modula. tion, never disappoints by running into an inperfect eaduze.' Another critic was happy to notice Mrs. Whitlook's "Improvement in the modulation of her voice. '43 Still another called attention to the fact "Mr WoodhUll stormed and swore in a more modulated tne, of voice tham is his wont when a full house witnesses his m.sdoeds."4 The critic who chided Simpson for "uttering" also, had occasion to write that his intonations wore "so peculiar to himself' that he "could not trace his meaning through the ups and downs of hi.s speech."M5 A Mr. De Camp was taken to task for introducing "too mmw artificial cadenoes in his voice to be pleasing to an American ear."6 In turn, Mr. Caldwel met disapproval because of a *want of cammand over the infleions of his voie,-ihich is dissonant and unmsical. . . 7
The problem of dealing with modulation illustrates an of the

difficulties inherent in any attempt to analyze such a complex aspect of delivery as that of vocal technique. The voice Is, after all, an entity# operating as a unit. When the elements involved In its use are isolated for study and criticism, they most be selected on an arbitrary basis. It ost be realized that no ae of the elemnts of voice ever appears sael in reality,# bt always in relationship to other aspects of voice

142w4, December 15, 1820, p. 39*

43mif m tk t g (Biglow], October, 1817, p. 4i0.

141WUw York Mirror, January 23, 1830, p. 232.
l41id., September 4, 1824, p. 46.

.46Is, December 13, 1823, p. 158.

47critic November 15, 1620, p. 47.










which have the Capacity to modify it. Thus it is that, while modulatiUn Na gentrlly be said to refer to the moifications of pitch, its meaning May at tins be extended to Inclnde other vocal changes. Portsr, In his discussion of modulation Ircludedo not onl the pitch factor, but also other modifications such as pause, rates loudmss and mphasis.48 Even though we mr isolate each of these factors for comment, we met expect to find they frequently overlap aM affect each other. For instaneop, rate may be modified by patterns of emphasis and paws. as in the ons of me actor who "oonsiderably retarded the progress of the play by bis masured, pauses and umesaning emphasis. 49 Porter thought the roedy for faulty modulation lay in the speaker's acquiring a "Spirit of emphasis" which would enable hin to choose his emphatic words with regard to the sense of the passage read.0 As proof that the elocutionist was not merely belaboring an obvioms point, but working to Improve the delivery of speakers and readers we need only note w critic's referee to the vocal habits of the actor Barry. The roier, In this instamoe thought that the actor usually modulated his voice with good effect, until he was called upon to portray a "passion"; then he fell Into the error of 'laying , without discretion, a mot astounding emphasis on every second or third word, hich, ams the dialege jolt along lk a hard4-rotting horse...

ieBPorter, Aa.is of Rhetorical Delive pp.*. 06-.218
'49Amrican Ibnthly M!Lagune (Bg-] J1e 81,p 37.

5OPorter, Aa yis of Rhetorical Deliver p. 95.
54*ew'tt Morror July 18, 1829, p. 13.










The importance of M as an element in the speaker'
delivery was pointed up by suoh olocutionists as Sheridan and Walker. The former devoted an entire lecture to the subject in Lectures on Eoeuin and, in his Lectures on Roading- devised a series of markings which could be placed In a script to indicate the length the pause vas to be held.52 He cautioned the speaker or reader, however# that pauses were to be made in proportion to the importance of the sense, and not merely because of the gramaticeal structure.53 Walker, on the other hand, based his fifteen rules for the use of pause on gramtical structure,4 While he was careful to point out that effective use of this element depended not so nuch on the number, as an the position, of the pauses, he nevertheless thought that speakers would generally pause every fifth or sixth word.5 Seam elocutionists considered pause in its relationship to other elements of voice. urrsy , for instance, considered two kinds of pawe first, an "emphatic ponse" used to call the hearer's attention to a particular word or phrase; second, e which marked test nctions of sense" used only to olarify the nsing.56 Porter also treated two kinds of pauses, but, unlike these of Murray# he labeled on a "pause of suspension" hich required with it a rising Inflection and wa used to denote that the sense was finished the

52Sheridan, Lectures on Reading, p. 98.

53Sheridanp Lectures on Elocution p. 1050
51*,Alkers R pp. 68-82.
SWalk*r, Elements of Elocution, p. 69.

541array, Engsh Reader, p. 8.










other he called a "final pause" which required a falling inflection and was to be used at the close of a sentence.57

In the case of the critical cosmnts regarding p u and the
efforts to improve this aspect of delivery, we might note the references which suggest its effects, either alone or in cOwbination with other factors, On the aor in which the actor used his voice. For instance, the "siw ,eong style" of perfome which ons critic reported as occur.ring frequently8 =ay have been due to "mehanical enunciations of the old school" or as he noted in the case of another pernfomane, to "pauses frequently too mach protracted... . ;9 It is possible that actors who were acquainted with the elocutionist's reounsdations my have developed such habits of pausing when they disregarded the elocutionist's warning that too mechanical attention to the placing of pauses would result in a monotonous deivery,60

One of the major criticism of the elder lean was concerned with his employment of the pause. For all the praise that was accorded his performances, Kean was censured for interrupting sentences too such, and pausing between words which the rever thought ought not to be separated* As instances of this fault, the critic listed such readings as, "and leave the world for me--to bustle in"; "say then, u,' peace--is made"i and "learned--fathers of the church.361 In Boston# the san type

5?POrtor, An&3yis of Rhetorical, Delivery, pp. �l5I 4 63.*65.

"New Tor. Mirror JuY 3# 1824 P. 390.
%1fbidp ,July lp , 18241 p. 399# 60murray, !gUsh Re ar p. 14.
63jiew rork Mirror* February Us, 1826, p. 227.










of criticisma as current. Critics there noted Nean' a "stubbor, monotenus voice deprives bin of the power of pronouning periods of axW considerable length with elegance and beauty-emotias even with ordinary propriety," as was apparent in his reading of Othelo's speech beginning "0 new forveriareiell the tranul xU lb . * 62 In commting an his delivery of this speech the critic objected that the "perpetual recurrence of the sarn toe at every pause in the meamum gave it very rmh the air of wsthodisti.cal prea.ing."63 in this instance the critic is echoing FArray's concern wer the nechanical and monotonous effect wich resulted vhen speakers made the error of employing "a similar tone at every stop, and a unform cadoe at every period. 64 A chilade i critic vent further in his criticism of lean's use of pause. Be quoted asitt 's remark that "every sentence was an alternation of dead pauses and rapid utterance," and agreed with Haslitt that Ahis mar of speaking was as mehanical and offensv as the "cohmonplacer, drawling onoteW of other players.",6 The sam critic protested that lean not only Introduced long pauses ar~trarily between vords but even "between syllables of the same word."6 Another net"*o eft i?-. im emorn over the use of pause and its effect can be found in a review by a New 'ork critic ih compared lem with Cooks. Re insisteds
62 ew EM Ga , Feb6a 1, 1821, p. 74.


631bid.

61-iarray, Rnlish ReLd r. p. 24.

Oonthe hldlha National Gasette, in Cole and Chiny, Actors an AtiN, p. 303,
6 _ .










The diffeze between the actor* is in nothing more striking than in their use of pauses* It was seldom that Cooke made a
halt in the utteane of a speech. . . . Cooke# no doubt sawtimes omitted the use of pauses where they might have been intraduced with the utmost propriety and effect and Sean frequently brings them in where they only sere to Interrupt th
iwetunu curret of feeling, and weaken the sense of the

A consideration of the problem of pause in the actor's use of voice leads naturally to the problem of rate. The greater the number of pauses a speaker emploau the more likely his rate of utterance will be slowed. The elocutionist's treatment of the problem, as typified by Znfield, usual involved the Injunction to use a slow rate,68 MUrra, likewise, spoke of a necessary moderation in rate if the speaker was to be distinej, but cautioned against a drawling amr which would render him Monotono.69 Theatrical critics, in their consideration of this spect of voioe, found evidence of performers who appsmtly ignored )krray's warning. A periodical, the ritict, argued that one of Forrest's mot obvious faults was "a too slow and stately ennciatiol, interrupted by frequet pauses--of such passages as roquiro to be spoken in a hurried colloquial namr..70 In their exatnation of the actor's skill In eploy n g this elocatonary factor critics also discovered instanees here the actor's lack of skill resulted in the opposite type of abuse, too fast a rate. The Boston ea omenting on the delivery

67 e[ york Mirror, July 8, 1826, p. 39.

689afildo The Speaker, p. 7.
69%muays English Reades #p. 7.

7Orities December 13, 1828, p. 11










of the actor# Conway# noted its "graces of declamation" and its "irseuistible charms" but added, "If there be a fault in his reading,

it in lhen he summons up all his power to give effect to certain passages and hurries over a succeeding one, equally important, and which ounot to be equaly impresie."71 Furthermore, iwen Mrs * Powefl played Lady Rando4ph in oIne's Douglas9 the c amented that some passages were almost lost by the rapidity of her delivery.72 Maywood, an English actor who gained some degree of reputation in this country, was criticised also for too fast a rate of delivery. In his case, the critic thought the fault might be due to his "seal to avoid the dramling and measured declamation of the Kleble echool....073

Another aspect of the performr's delivery which both critic and elocutionist felt It necessary to treat occaxinally was that of loudness. This elment of vocal technique Us already been mentioned in its relationship to the question of audibility. To Judge from the critic's coents# the actors of this period must, at time have been "injudicious" in the way they applied this attribute of voice. In so doing, they violated the rule, laid down by porter74 and echoed by Sheridan and It-rsy#75 that th effective speaker uses only as much voice as propriety would permit. Mr. Robertson# for example, "brayed

71aew nJld M arch 26, 18214, n.p.
7T2bid., October 28, 1825, n.p.

"3 bid., February 26# 1819, n.p.

TPorter, Analysis of Rhetorica Delivery. p. 209.

756heridan, Lectures on Elocution,# pp. 112-116; see als Yarrsy, English Reader p. 6.










out with the lungs of a stentor" what# the critic felt, should have been "poured like a leperous distilment into the very porches" of his fellow actor'8 ears*76 It would appear that actors# even those of the stature of Forrest, oould very well have profited by the instruction an the matter of loudness, At time the actor was probably guilty of using Ids voice simply to drown out other actors, or to make them appear insignificant. Montrose J. Moses indicates as wh in an account of one of Forrest's English tours. It seems that an actor by the name of Gustavus Brooks was enagd to play lag* to Forrest's Othello. Brooks* who had been vaned that Forrest always dominated the stage with his vocal power, was prepared to contest his supmcy. In the third act, Moses relates that #Forrest lot forth the full volume of his utternoe; Brooke replied with a counter volleyl Forrest showed his astonishment; he had met his match. It rankUd sorely."77
The theatrical. critic also had a great deal to say about the actor's use of e ss. The widespread concern with this element of technique is suggested by the fact critics felt it necessary, even when treating the actor's perfomanee in a cursory mmr, to Include such remarks as "A few passager were given by Mrs., Slam with good emphasis and discretion" or that Mr. Nilson numbered among his other qualities an emphasis generally Just."79 The critic did not, however,


.....rican Mothl. iigsin(Bi glowl I, July, 1817, p 208.

77N'oess Forrest- pp. 328-329.

7%ew Tork mirror, March 8, 1828, p. 279.

T~~imerican ~. Motl[aaib Biglow]I, January,0 1818, p. 213.









always onflne htmelf to such general rmarks. go often analy.ed te actor's readings intely eoven to the point of Indicating the words the actor emphasized, and suggesting the "Just ess" or "propriety' of other readings. In so doing, he was foflnogng the elocutionUtts lead. Eq*IRass was given extesLve treatment In the teaching. of the elocutionists, with many of their rules being iltrated by marked passages.
While it is not meessaiy, herej, to analyse the swVp*xjtis which the elocutionists found in this phase of their subject, it might be use ul to look at some general theories with regard to it. Walker made a distinction between two knds of emphasis. He defined particular !as that which employed increase force and inflection oresponding to the meaning. He identified a second type, ggI~ M its 0# that which was not regmUlated by the sens of the passage read, but by the taste and feeling of the reader.80 It may have been the aetor's over-indulgeo in this latter tpe of emphasis which broa*t doe wn critic' wensre. Porter limited emphasis to a "distintive utterance" which best convoys mean.ing81 Yurray thought that emphasis shuld be used in reading according to the pattern found in "eomm discourse." He also observed that, while scow persons use very little emphasis in speaking, others ea.-T it far beyond anything to be fbond In ao disourse, and even soetimes throw it on words which are trining in themselves. Aecording to WM, the greatest fault was that of multiplying emphasis too much and using it Indis=anate2yy.82

ftdaler# Lectures on Elocution.,* 232.
OlPorter, Analysis of Rhetorcal DeveR , p. 71.
C2M , glish Reader, pp. 940.










The theatrical criticism of the period contains numerous

examplas which parallel the elocutionist '8 treatment of the subject of emphasis. One reviaewer, for instance, could not praise Forrest enough for his portrayal of Brutus (in Payne's play), but did notice "one false reading" which he evidently thought was so glaring as to be worthy of correcting. In the line, MThe signs that strain the very striw' of life," he questioned Fotrrest s emphasis on the italicized word, and put forth his o4n opinion that the word 1 should be the emphatic word.83 The Importane attached to the problem of emphasis and the careful attention given to the actor's application of it is demonstrated by the length to which the critic would go to quote lines, mark the emphatic words, and suggest "correct" or nore appropriate readings. One critic took the trouble to note that the following lines should be spoken with emphasis on the italicized words:

Let none but fathers search-they must prevailAnd yet he was a father the did thisi
He pointed out that Mr. Pritchard had not emphasized then in this manner during performance instead, he had delivered the line as follovas

And yet he was a father who did thislSt
There are many other emples of this sort of criticism. One critic, reviewing Kean's Richard fIp offered the following objections

We consider he should have laid stress upon the words 'the
world,' where he says to his wife# 'the world would call that murder,; instead of letting the whole line slip b
without a single emphasis. And we think to, he might be

83Nv lark Mirror, December 8, 1827, p. 171.

%4American Monthly Xagsne fNiglwl" 41070 181?, p. 206.










wrong in laying a force upon the word 'thee,' vhen in courting Lady Am.e, he says, 'He lives that loves thee better than he could' i should the point not have bee--n
upon he couald?"8

These and sintlar e les Indicate the criti, as well as the elou. tionist of the period, vas greatly concerned with the problem of "correct" emphasis

Having established the minate attention which the theatrical critics gave to the problems of modulation, rate, pause, loudness, and mphasis during this portion of the nineteenth century, we may nov Inquire whether the critic's object may not have had its parallel in the elocutionist's stress on the use of these factors in developing the ability to read well. It must be remembered thats at this tim, illusionistic character portrayal was not an ideal to be sought after; instead# the interest centered In the performer's exhibition of his talents. Indeed, we have noted practically no reference to character portrayal as such. In the periodical criticism explored In this study, there are but few and scattered references to an actor's portrayal of character in azthing like the modern some of that torm. The absence of any significant concern with this factor would suggest that both the critic and the andionce were interested in how well the actor used his voice in getting across the force and beauty of the author's conception. In essence, this becomes an interest In the actor's ability to "read" a role well. This interest in the actor's ability to "road" with 'Justness and propriety" my well have had its origin in the elocutionist's


8! Nw To*i Mirror, February 11, 1826, p. 227.










distinction between two types of oral situations. Those were* first# the situatics in which the speaker is delivering his own thougtos and, second, that in vhlch he is repeating the ideas of anoter.86 Sheridan and other oloctionists devoted whole treatises to the art of reading. In these* the elocutionist took the position, that by analyzing the elements of oice and determining how they mere used, a reader would be able to cammunicate the author's seaming. The theatrical critic vas mrely applying the olcutim&r lessons and standards of the day when he showed an interest in whother or not the actor was able to employ modulation, pause, volume, rate, and emphasis in a manner that would supply "propriety," "eustrass," and "beauty," to his "reading." This attitude is perhaps nowhere better revoaled than in the comment, which was prompted by revivals of School for Scandal and I . . *. In this Instance the critic pointed out that portrayal of a Shakespearean character demands "some person who can entirely oasprehond and enjoy the beauties which spaside through the paper, to real*o ise. the image of the Imagination, and impart the eham of voice, accent# energy ad passion to the silent traces of the poet's fany.4"8 Nouhevs in this statement Is there a7 reference to an actor's ability to portray character as ve think of it today. The demand is rather for an understanding of the authors material and the vocal capacity to express it well a requirmnt which, It might be noted, accdned well with the eloutionist's teachings. This same critic went on to extoll

864)1im Cocking The Art of Delivering Written-Laae (London# 1775)v pp. 2-3.
8?Iew York Mirror, fay lL1, 1825o p. 330.










the e=elewie8s of Miss Kflly's acting In these two classic,. He thought that, In her hanisSheridand s sentimmt assumes the garb of poetry$ and Shkesparet's poetry Is magnified Into a w"24 and enchanted passion which defies the power of voiceless language to describe 88 Not only 04 he feel that Miss Kl was Ideally suited to play the female characters of Shakespearo but he also believed that the speech com ing "Buid me a willow cabin at thy gate*" was witot eeptio the finest specimen of reading and deolamation he had ever heard.89 Another review pointed out that the tones of Ms 1ela's voice were so "various and mmet," and 'her reading so scrupulously correct#" that every word wich she poke vent *hm to the hoart"90 (as JAhn Mao had desired those of every performer should do). The tender to focus attention an the actor's skill In reading is f rther reflected in a statemt frmo the 2 which nated that *violations of sense are so oomon on the stage, that it was a pleasure to hear Mrs. Henry whose e ll ye I "a olear conception of the making; In a correct mphastai and appropriate eadmo ,91 Another critic. vho appreciated good reading in the actar# praised Mr., Parr for doing what Rat one in a hundred can, that is# read poetry properly. Ne pronzunes di.. tiziotly, u*ins his stops, accentuates his vords with 3wlpent, and zodalates the tones of his voice with good effectox9

881od.
891id.

90_b4., April 19, 1825, p. 294.
9Iew 2~pLaId slay April 22, 18250 n.p.
92Nev Yok!, Jaly 18, 1829, p. 1J4.










This preoccupation with eaonndative factors, rather than character portrayals produced an abundance of references to "faults in reading. These were by no mans limited to the minor actors of the period, nor to the ustrained. The critic pointed to errorsr' in readIng smong the great, as wll as the minor, actors* A Boston critic, taking note of the faults which Coleman of the New York $yerlng Post had detected in 1ean's readings thouitthey were such as " ew echoolboys would be guilty of."P When Kean finally arrived in Boston, this sam critic found his "utterly incapable of elegant and tasteful reading."94 The Philadelphia critics "Betterton," apparently agreed with this evaluation of Isan's ability as a "reader," 8ims he wrote, "Nr. Enan has no pretense and indeeds, no ability, to kep up numbers. Ris auditor can have no perception of rtt or eer Tos verse# where a sort of amalgam is mWe of whole phrases either by hurzy or hearseness of utterance .. ."9 In reviews of the period other critles placed a simlar premium an good readig*. For example when listing the mny good qualities of the actor, Barrett# a Boston oritie made a point of the fact that "his reading indicates he understands Mis author and is willing to repeat what the author set down."96 When Comay appeared in Boston, the sane critic declar d "A great ezoellence of this gentleman is the correctness of his reading."97

"Now- Enland 0ala, December 8, 1820s n.p.
9%&Ibi.# February 16, 1i21, p. 714.
95From the Philadelphia National Gasetto. In Cole and Chincay
Actors on Ao bra p. 61.
96Neing~an~a~.s September 20# 1822# n~p.

97mbid., February 27, 18214, n.p.










The ability to read well involved the closely-related ability to declaim. The difference between "reading' and 'declaiming' was probably only am of degree, the latter being more formal and requiring a more "Ohiihtesed" form of utteramc. Some plays were, iodeed, thought to require a declamatory style because of the manner in which they were written. One critic was probably indicating an awareness of this difference when he referred to the language of the play, Rolla as "that of declamation rather than nature."98 Similarly, the 2I said of Julius Caesar that "its declamatory passages are among the finest speciments of eloquence In our language and when these are delivered with propriety, they afford an entertainment of the highest
kind to a cultivated and refined taste."99 The actor who could declaim these passages well wan usually aaemsd for his ability to do go; for

instance, the Boston critic wrote that Doff's style of declamation was "happily adapted" to the speeches of Brutus.100 Occasionally, however, the actor must have mistaken mere noise and rant for good declamation, for Mr. Pries's declamation was deseribed as "sore 'raw and gusty' than the 'the troubled Tiber, chafing with his shores, "10 In the lipht of such comments as these, we can but conclude that the ability to delain vas valued as one of the mazy talents the actor of the period was expeted to display, especially in particular scenes which lent themselves readily to oratorical exhibition.

ACritic1 November 29, 1828, p. 80.
99fw EnulNd Oalaxy, November 20, 1818# nape
1001bid., February 27, 1818, n.p.
10 . lbid November 20, 1818, n.p.










An exploration of the theatrical critiisms of acting during the period 1815 to 1840 reveals that the critic was mch concerned with the manner in which the actor used his voice. The theatrical critic# like the elocutionist., and perhaps because of his pervading infMenoep placed great importsne upon the power and effect achieved by the oral aspect of delivery. Both critic and elocutionist had in. sisted upon two general standards of vocal usages first, the speaker's voice must be easily heard and understood; and s#ond, it mt be pleasing in its quality. Furthermore, the critic looked for such specific vocal attributes ass caMs sufficaent for modulation through a wide pitch rang, appropriate inflections and dnces, varying degrees of loudness proper rate of utterance, suitable length and swiber of a and "Juatess In laying enha , These factors were considered neossary, in part at least, to accomplish those t ton which thrilled the audiences of that day. Most of all, perhape, the critic desired that the actor possess these attributes of voice so that he might exhibit the ful force and beauty of the playwright's aAing, and be able when it was demanded of himO to adapt his mode of speaking to the declamatory nature of the material,













CHAPTER IV


PRSICAL ASPECTS OF AERICAN ACTING

"... this gentleman's very b thinks and reflects . 0 -4irror

An examination of nineteenth-centuvy American criticism indicates that, in addition to the requirement that the performer met certain standards of vocal e ssioa, both the critic and the elocutionist recommended goals for his use of bodily action, attitude, gesticulation, and facial expression. It be coes apparent, also, that both critic and elocutionist tended to agree in regard to the standards for effective bodily action, and to share the belief that through training and the judicious application of various rules, those standards could be mot.

These views regarding effective bodily action, however, were predicated on the belief or conviction that a performer must first possess some measure of physical endoment before rules regulating bodily movement could prove effective. Austin, an elocutionist who devoted the major part of his study to the physical aspect of the

orator's art, thought the rules he had devised the best that could be collected from ancient and modem writers yet, he was careful to observe that rules could not bestow what nature had denied.1 Porter

lAustin, Chimomia. Preface, p. Z,










agreed that the public speaker's first requisite must be an adequate physique. He took: care to point out that "a defect, original or accidental, in the conformation of the body," was one source of "faults of rhetorical aection.2 Speaking in more general terms, but to the same end, Hugh Blair insisted that, to become an artist, a person had to have some measure of genius or talent as a gift from nature. Blair assigned the Individual the responsibility of improving these through art and study* but he added the warning that training could not make up for a lack of natural endowment.3 Such a philosophy found an expression in the Mrror's opinion that no living actor united as much "power and original genius with correct taste and cultivated talents," as Maready, who had nearly all that nature could give plus all that taste and talent could acquire.1 One critic sunmed the matter up in these words: "Nature mat have done much. and education more* to form a consumate actor.*5

In view of the importance attached to the actor's physical
endolent, we might well expect the critic to lock, first of all, for

that zqsite. That he did so Is apparent from Mose's statement that Dunlap and Clapp, In their theatrical criticisms, "had an eye for physical particularities.06 In this regard Moses also notes, "When

tPortero Amnyis of Rhetorical Delivery# p. 152.
33ugh Blair Lectures an Rhetoric and Belles Lettres (7th An. ed.I New Yrk, 18175, p. 7 .

'1ew York Mhor, October 7, 1826, p. 87.

mercan MonthkL Magazsin (Biglow], August, 1817, p. 302.

4,80s, rrt, p. 27.










critics spoke of Conmay's fine figure as being suited to the rol, of Coriolanms, it becomes apparent that outward dignityp external statuesqueneses the gmnd maner, wore as nch parts of the acting of the day as the well-rounded utteranee."7 The sheer stature of Conway had its own statement to make in the estimation of one critic, who wrote as follows:

ie i8nore than six feet in heightj his limbs are wellpr'oporion; and when he become animated with his part,
he is ~e~fl and dignified in the extreme. . . . his
very appearance caused us to experience a thrill of
emotion , for much as we had heard of him we did not expect
to behold a figure so elegant and impessive. Ther is
something startling in his gigantic form; moen wanned by
passion, it seews to dilate and becme yet so grand as if the very god Mars walkd in our presence.8 :j

It would see#m that, for the critic of the day, agnifioent physiques were required to portray "agniflcent" characters* Conversel*y a lack of these physical requisites becam, a factor to be considered in evaluating an actor's fitness for particular roles. Clapp, the Boston critie, was subscribing to this standard when he described Edmund lean as "scarcely above middle heightp" and "deficient in dignity of daportment for certain characters.09 Even the Philadelphia critic, who felt "nature had endowed Kr. lean with a vigorous goniu, and important physical qualas, for his pursuit * 10 found it necessary to make a reservation regard. ing Kean's physical stature. In referring to his muscular frame he observed that it was "well and elegantly shaped, except in the shoulders,


Trbid., pp. 33-3i4.
8NwvYork mrS January 31, 1824, p. 210.

90lapp, Boston Stag, p. 178.
lOFrom the Philadelphia National Casette in Cole and China, Actors on Act, po. 300.










which, being round and heavy in appearsneg* detract Web from the Just effect of hi. other proportions. ff1 A critle of the Al a far loss kind in assessing the effect of a performers lack of heigt. He could not remeber vhether it had been said o eMn or Garrick in the role of Othello that he "appeared Uk Desetu s ittle black boy that handed her her tea-Mettles" rather than the warrior he was supposed to be. _]th degree to which physical endowment was pried in the actor is suggested by the follwing oommt 0ocnrig the actor Wallack. This reference, which may be taken as fairly typical* Included the opinion that "few mn . . . possess so noble a person, or a more Intelligent aid beautiful countemmnee.al.3
With such a premium place on the sale phyuiques it is samwhat surprising that the figures of the actresses received less empsnt. Nevertheless, it was only occasionally that the critic singled out an actress for her physical charns. When he did, he eqlqe far mre neral terms than those used to describe the actor. A critics for instance dismissed one actress# a Miss Rodk, with the rather terse descriptions persono, small,9 we:lfoVnod; carriage, esy and graeful; countenane, pleasingly ezprossive, though not hand . . ., Sven the very popular Clar Fisher received only the passing rma-k that her f e was "charming even in a state of repose" and 'lovely Indeed"

1111,14.

l3Alion December 24#, 185, p. 22 .

23.ew York timeer Jne , 5ap1U, . 355.
Ul4Iid.p December 1, 1827 p. 167.










when "lighted by feeling."0$ Manyr of the eommunts invite the belief that the critic was being gallant in not describing the actressts figure. One reviewer, for exaple, gave Mrs. Whitlock credit for the "nmberless beauties of her performance" in spite of "amy little deflicincles, or redundanies, of figure. . ..16 On the other hand, sae actresses appear to have been able to compensate for their lack of acting ability by displaying a lovely figur. After itmising the vocal faults of one such person, the critic added, "But what was lost to the ear was made up to the eye; and who will trouble himself about the sounds of vords, while gazing m the goddess of beauty?"1?

It is obvious that for the critic of the first part of the niteenth eentuxy, a consMerble portion of that gift of natre necessary for the actor to possess was a body of good proportions, e capable of embodying the characters he was called on to portray. It is equally true that# how ver necessary the physical requirements were thought to be, more physique was not enough to meet the standard vhich critic and elocutionist set for the orator and actor Thes natural capacities were to be trained and Improved. It is paradoxical to hote, therefore# that sae of the greatest actors achieved fan in spite of their lack of stature and physical robustness. It was probably true that, under the spell of great acting, "the audiences forgot their lack of stature and saw only what Byron saw in Kean--a soull what Coleridge


15Tid., September 12, 1827, p. 76.

16fthqs December, 1M12 p. 16i4*

l1mId.., October, 1812, p. 53.










saw in Kean's Macbeth--flashes of lightning;, t bt Walt Whilman felt in Booth--flre, energy, abandon,"18 Actors of those days aiusd to make the pit tremble,19 and tremble it did.
Audiences of nineteenth-century America evidently expected

critics to give minute and detailed criticim of the manmer in which the actor physically portrayed his role. One reviewer commented that the theatrical critic must be always on the alert so as not to miss "the most taking and attractive" parts of a performance since the audience would never let "a word or action" of a performer esacape its notice.20 In assessing the value of the action which the actor emplayed, the theatrical critic looked for grace and elegane, moderation, appropriateness and foroe. As in the case of other points of criticim or standards of evaluation, these were qualities which the elocutionist looked for in the public speaker's delivery.21 Austin, we discover# wanted the orator to have grace and decorum in his bodily action.22 Sheridan, on the other hand, desired the speaker or reader to possess force and grace; the foser as a gift of nature, the latter acquired through art.23 Walker set as his standard "a Just and elegant adapta. tion of every part of the body to the nature and import of the subject."24


l8koses, Forrest, p. 31.
191boid.

200sw York Niror July 25P 1835,* p. 30.
22abersxnp in Hietoz7 of S eech Education,, p. 110.
22Austin, Crcnoa, pp.
235heridan, Lectures on Eloc an, p. 153.
24Ialker, E ts oEutio, p. 301.










The critic tended to prize these sa qualities, and we find an actress, Mrs. Barnes, 1eing praised because her "action was graceful and appropriate."25 The same critle, doling oat censure for the lack of these qualities# reported that the role of Henry, in Speed the Muhwas played by am*e stranger whose manners and action were stiff and only occasionally expressive and appropriate.26 In 1824s when Cooper and Conway ve exchanging roles in ene reserved at every other performed, on critic thought Cooper's playing of Jaffier "chaste" and "elegant,' with non of the affectation noticed in other perform" of this role. While he found Cooper's "every novent and action . * . elegant and proper. * * ,.27 he thought Conway' physical portrayal so "uncoath" and "unbecoming" that he would not even have recognised the play being performd without the aid of the handbill. Another instance of the critics' tendency to share the elocutianists' views regarding the role and importance of bodily action can be found in a commat on Cooper's version of the dagger scem in abeth. In this ease the critic of the Amdn ntVlj thought Cooper's performae admirable because "he gave effect to every word#" with his physical movennt.28 This, of course, is eoupletely in accord with Austin's belief that, in may passages a speaker or reader might be call" an to deliver, each word was so iportant that it should be marked with

25aerican fthl Ftpsim (Diglow], Augst, 1817, p. 298.

26., P. 300.

MNew ork er, April 10, 2824, p. 291.

28$Aurica Mon g sIM [Biglov], Juy, 1817, p. 210.








9

bodily actie29 Austln and other elocu niste were careful, homwver, to caution the performr against too mch bodily ati a,30 Perfornmas who followed te recoandation, but ignored the wa-ings Called dom criticism typified by that directed against the actor Barry. While Barry was oomm o for his playing of a salor's roee be was advised to ,prw away certain excre e" of action. The critic was aare that "while sailors are occasionally in the habit of rolling as they w&U-throwing up their heels-wasticating tobacce-and hoisting their fsble rs Is no reason In nature *by they should be Ineaaantlj going through e of these evontios."3 Other violatim of th rule concerning eesslve physical action may be noted In the Critic's objection to the elder Booth's "redundancy of action,'* Webc the "ier considered this actor's *great and besetting ain.o"3
-he following oth, howver, this sme critic emmaded the mdian# Barrett, because of his "degree of eae and vivacity,' and for the fact that, whe he was on Stap, there was no pause in the actIon, no waiting for cus. While the critic Is obviously referring to the action of the play as a ihle, the fact rmains that he attfibut d its exellence to the actor's ad tm which, in his ees, gave life e~e to the "dull, clods supporting him,'33 Activity for the

29AtIn, Mdmd pp. 4U446.

3O1lAi.1 see also Parter, Aaysis of Rhetorical Dqliver p. 1*60.

3llnw I"a* MMM Telwary 21s, 1827, p. 2147.

32 .sti Novemher 15p 1828 p. 45.
33M~i., Deomber 6, 1828, p. 950










sake of activity rarely, if ever, received any commendation from the critic. Mr. Siepson, in one productionp received no praise from the critic even though he *was certainly very active and busy* . ... This aversion to too much action caused the G on amG occasion, to note the I ovemen of Mr. Pride, rhoe fault had been "an *zberance of breath and aotioa."35 The eatrmens to which soe actors evi. dently went to appear active on the stage is exemplified by the performer who was roquested, in the event he was not actually afflicted with St. Vitus's dance, to spare the audience "sem of his conv Uive twitches, and to stand still for one second, at a time, if possible."36 Smen Kean came in for his share of this kind of censure One critic did not agree with the reviewers who alai d Kean merited praise becaus he appeared to throw his whole soul into the characters he portrayed. Instead, he found loan's portrayal aharactorised by "ezesvive actiau." go thought Keen guilty of constantly "running about the stages beating his breast, or alternately clenhing and opening his handh, fumbling about his nock, (making] sudden starts and rapid transitions. .. 37 Furthermvje, he cuplaned that vhen "addressing other performers he (Kean] steps furiously up to than, thrusts his face into theirs, aad having finished his speech, rushes from them with a rapidity which


3"amrican Nmonth Magasine (Biglow)l, July, 1817, p. 206.

35New Rnglad Glav, November 27, 1818, n.p.

36ns ru ian othWZ magasine, quoted in ode, na Is 4

3?xme 3ntlan GaUsy February 23, 1821, p, 78.










nothing but the stae box ca arrest.08 A similar viewpoint was demonstrated by a Mew York critic who took issue with a "morning paper's" recomendation that "a little dash of the [ean style" would give "finish and picture" to Cooper's playing of Virginins. Ihis critic asked his readers to imagie Cooper departing from one of his attitudes whichI "Jove might envy and Apollo attempt to imitate in vain" in order to thump his breast with a truncheon or guntlet, and stalk in "solamn aockez7" across the stage. Such activity on Cooper's part would, he believed, serve onsy to excite the hisses, not the applause# of the audiene.39
Although the critic readily condemned action which was ineleant or excessive, he was also quick to censure an actor for employing too little action. The elder Booth, whose "redundancy of action" had been noted on sow occasions, was guilty at other times of transgressing too far in the other direction. The Ae n, for example, found "something tame* in this actor's level soenss."4O In 1831, the Nirror saw fit to report Booth's performance of Sir Giles Overreach was "a spiritless affair." In that instance, except for a few "bursts of eellence," the critic thought he "shuffled along" with unpardonable carelessness, on-. tent to give the audience only a "few touches" nm and Vihn. Such a manner of playing, the critic asserted, gave the appearance of an artist

*who finishes a face here, and an arm there--an d leaves al the groups and landscape in the background rudely sketched.04l

3rbid.

3PRew York Mirror, September 27, 1823, p. 0.
l&quted from the Amrican, in oden, A IIn, M 3.
4alew York M September 13, 1831# p. 71.










hen the actor employed bodily activity which was appropriate

and forceful, he was certain to be praised. The appeal of forceful and appropriate action to the audience of the day is reflected inashington Irving's accomnt of a scene in which Cooke played lago to Kemblets Othellot

In the scene in hich instilS his suspicions# Cooke
grasped EembleIs left with his own, and then fixed his right like a claw on his shouder. In this position, drawing himself up to him with his short ara, he breathed his poisonous whispers. Kemble coiled and twisted his hands,
writhing to get away his right hand clasping his brow, aM
darting his eye back on !=. It was vonderful.42

Even action of a violent sort was commended in the actor when the play was thought to desnd it. A Boston critic, for example, believed the role of Glenroy afforded "ample scope for the highest powers of an actor," since It demanded "rapid transitions from paroxpas of Joy to those of grief, and from affection to indignation.1 Such action, in the crities estimation, could be accomplished only by an actor with the extraordinary "powers of mind and command of limb and featuro," needed to exhibit these gradations of motion correctly and to give the spectator a sense of their reality)Al References to a performame by Charles Kean serve as an additional index to this concept of appropriateness. On this occasion the younger Xean was praised for his "clear, melodious and distinct reading, vhich was better suited to the "moral

42Q,oted in Brander Matthew and Laurence Btton, Actors ard Actresses of Great Britain and the United States From th "?
Davd arrckto the Present Time, (5 vol..; NeTork, 16556)s 118 6.

l'3New RnglanAd Galaxy April 3, 1818, n~p.

4ibid.








914
lesson" of Hamlet than excessive "gsticulation and aotion."14 Although this critic appeared to approve a vocal emphasis in the playing of Halet, he nevertheless took note of lean's "fine action throughout, the ohastenss of his gesticulations [and] his thorough acquaintance with , . . the business of the play," features which made his soast a "most finished per-c__Me.*46

In enmerlt it night be said that the critic's standards for the actor's stage action wsre the sam as those which ws admired by the elocutionists., Just as Sheridan, Walker# Austin* Porter and other elocutionists ecm nded grace, wmerationp force, and appropriateness as the qualities which should charaterise the speaker's bodily action, the theatrical critic recommended then as virtues to be cultivated by the actor* The performer was praised when he conformed to the requirements, and cnsurod when he failed to do so.
The problie of anal2sing the actor's bodily action is somewhat si1ilar to that of anysing his use of voice. Although various elements may be isolated for comment# we =at remember that these attitudes, lpstures and facial expressions are integra parts of action as a whole. Each affects, or is affected by, every other component. The matter of attitude to which the theatrical critic gave much of his attention, was in reality an inseparable part of the actor's stage action and helped forn its character. Nevertheless like each of the other elements, attitude had its oun statement to make apart from its involvemnt in the


l45ew rork September 250 1830, p. 94.

461bIA.










larwr pattern of the stage action. Fros the critics' zu references to "picturosquo sad "graceful" attitudes, it is clear that "attitude" was a tor which was applied to the astor'a bodily positions or ps.tures. It is also apparent that those positions were "struck" and held for a period of tmej in sem cases# too lng a time, according to the critie.4? By tmmig to the elocutionist, moreover, we can get a prcise picture of what these attitudes were like. Austim, for in. stance, advised the orator to adopt such attitudes and positions as were consistent with manly aind simple grace. Vietoes were to be turned moderately outward; the Limbs disposed so as to support the body with ease and, at the same tim# be subject to chige with facilityj the leg and thigh braced, but not contracted; and the knee straihte: ! While Austin did not def n at per so# the preceding instructions call forth a picture vhich might wall be that of an aeter of the nineteenth-centuYu "teapot school." As for the trunk of the botd Austin thouit that it should be well-balanced and sustained erect on to supporting limbs ezoept mhen attitudes required the body to be Ineoli d) In this onnetion, we might note that the 0 In reviewIng a reading by Duff, commanded his appropriate "recinin postures o the lines "The vsquish'd victor sunk upon her breast." The reviewer called attention to the fact that$ follo*ng the lim the reader should have made a Paue until he recovered his e ret position. Xr. Duff, hover, must have maintained this attitude much too longa siae

..?ew InIglaId GII III. Deomber I I1817 n.p.

UAustiZI, Chirvaomia, pp. 298-305#










the reviewer observed that he "preserved the recumbent state of his body through two or thre lines. 49 Mother requirement which Austin made for the employment of attitude was that the position assumed mest be eapable of being varied easily. That condition required that the weight of the body be on one leg, with the other leg so placed as to be able to re2ieve it promptly. In addition, the foot an which the weight rested was to be placed so that a perpendicular l n from the "hole of the neck" would pass through the heel of that foot.50 Additional light is shed on the critic's use of the term by Porter#s inference that attitude, in the theatrical sense of the term, had a more specific meaning than that of "general positions of the body which his elocutionary writings assigned to it. He did, however, point out that an erect at. titude Night denote "majesty," "activity," or "strength"; while I* attitudes expressed, among other things, "affection" or windolence.l1 The English critic, Haxitt, has left what is probably one of the moet vivid accounts of what an actor's attitude might embody, and how it might impress both critic and adiee. Describing the death scen in Edmund Kean's Richard I, Hatlitt said,

r fought Ike one drunk with wounds; and the attitude in
whih he stands with his hands stretched out, after his
word is taken from him, had a preternatural and terrific
prandeur, as if his will could not be disaxped, and the very~
phantoms of his despair had power to kill.52

'49gL EnGl G Jamary 2, 1818, nep,
5oAustin, ch, pp. 295.296.

%lPrter, Anaysi of Rhetorical Delivery. pp. 48, 11.
52,A* Darlingtons Th Acor!Wis Audience (London, 194*9)p
.




Full Text

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THE APPLICATION OF PREVAILING PRINCIPLES OF ELOCUTION TO THEATRICAL CRITICISM OF AMERICAN ACTING: 1815-1840 By CHARLES McCORKLE STATHAM A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE COUNCIL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA August, 1959

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The writer gratefully acknowledges his sense of indebtedness to those who have contributed to the preparation of this dissertation. He is sincerely appreciative of the help of Dr* L. L. Zimmerman who first suggested the topic, whose course in American theatre history formed a background of material for the study, and without whose generous and friendly direction this study would have been impossible. He is greatly in debt to Professor H. P. Constans who guided his doctoral program, acted as chairman of his committee, and generously provided assistantships for two years. The writer would also like to express his gratitude to each member of his committee who has given generously of his time and advice: to Dr. Douglas Ehninger whose courses and stimulating discussions greatly aided the writer in his approach to the subject; to Dr. Thomas Pyles for his contributions, especially to the chapter on pronunciation; to Dr, T. Walter Herbert whose courses in Shakespeare influenced the study definitely, if indirectly; to Dr, Alma Johnson Sarett who very graciously replaced Dr, Tew for the final examination; and to Dr. Tew whose course in the scientific bases of speech aided the writer in the analysis of vocal technique, A word must be said in grateful recognition of the contribution of Dr. Wayland Maxfield Parrish whose seminars first interested the writer in the elocution movement. The writer is happy to record here his gratitude to the Graduate School for the fellowship which enabled him to complete ii

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this dissertation. Finally, a word of appreciation is due the writerÂ’s mother for her encouragement and support during these years of study. iii

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TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ii INTRODUCTION . 1 Chapter I. ELOCUTIONARY BASES OF AMERICAN THEATRICAL CRITICISM 19 II. STANDARDS OF PRONUNCIATION REQUIRED OF THE ACTOR ON THE AMERICAN STAGE 38 HI. CRITICISM OF THE ACTCRÂ’S VOCAL TECHNIQUE .... 57 IV. PHYSICAL ASPECTS OF AMERICAN ACTING 83 V. PORTRAYAL OF EMOTION AS A FACTOR IN AMERICAN ACTING 107 VI, FIDELITY TO NATURE IN AMERICAN ACTING 127 VII . SOME OBSERVATIONS ON THE ACTING STYI2S AND TECHNIQUES WHICH PREVAILED ON THE AMERICAN STAGE 155 BIBLIOGRAPHY 165 iv

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INTRODUCTION The purpose of this study is to analyze the acting techniques described by theatrical critics in periodicals published in the United States from 1815 to 18U0. This analysis will attempt to isolate those aspects of the actor’s deliveiy which received critical attention, and establish their relationship to the standards developed by teachers of elocution for criticizing these same aspects in the delivery of public speakers, oral readers, and at times actors. Since the materials basic to this study are drawn from a singular type of dramatic criticism, it is necessary, first of all, to evaluate this kind of criticism as a justifiable source for a study and definition of acting techniques. Admittedly, dramatic criticism is not only difficult to define, but its limits cannot be set in such a way as to be accepted universally. To Littlewood, the term "dramatic criticism" includes "everything written or said about the theatre,"! Spingam takes the point of view that it is not necessary to know anything of the theatre in order to understand the drama of an age. 2 Charles H. Gray, on the other hand, distinguishes between two methods of criticizing drama by using the terms "theatrical criticism" and "dramatic criticism." The "theatrical critic" looks at drama as it is performed in the theatre, lSamuel R. Littlewood, "Dramatic Criticism," The Oxford Companion to the Theatre , ed. Phyllis Hartnoll (London, 195>l), p. 197. 2j. E. Spingam, Creative Criticism (New York, 1917), p. 53 • 1

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2 while the "dramatic critic" considers the play apart from its theatrical presentation and bases his criticism solely on his reading of it. Gray notest Some dramatic critics may prefer to read plays under the more quiet condition of a private study — as Charles Lamb said he preferred to read Shakespeare — it is perhaps not too much to assert that the play which is being thus criticized is quite a different thing from that which the theatrical critic sees produced in the theatre, nor to assert that the values which the play possesses in the theatre, belong of right to the full work of art. Certainly it is to the many-sided art of the theatre that the theatrical critic of our periodicals must devote himself. . . . Theatrical criticism, then, is a species of writing with peculiar interests and values. 3 It would appear, then, that the breadth of the terra "dramatic criticism" permits the recognition of two basic types of critical opinion, a literature -oriented criticism and a "theatrical" or performance-oriented criticism such as that employed in this study. In his consideration of what dramatic criticism should or should not emphasize, A. C. Ward calls attention to certain factors which invite a further limitation of this latter area and, in essence, recommends a concentration of emphasis on critical evaluations of the actor’s product. He believes that, since the first World War, dramatic criticism has shown a tendency to become "stubbornly literary" in that the playwright's work receives too much attention at the expense of the actor's contribution. To Ward, drama is "a composite art born in the theatre," and is only germinally existent in the playwright's mind.k The lack of this "more 3charles H. Gray, Theatrical Criticism in London to 1795 (New York, 1931), pp. 1-2. ^Alfred C. Ward, Specimens of English Dramatic Criticism , XVII XX Centuries (London, 19h5), p. 19*

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3 comprehensive and satisfying kind of criticism" he attributes to the fact that the critics have followed Aristotle's example too closely and neglected "the actor and the visual aspects of the theatrical art." Ward admits that Aristotle's kind of criticism served the purpose of Greek drama adequately since theatrical performance in that day was primarily an act of worship in which the actor became a "celebrant . » • whose activity and personality merge in his office and consequently are of no account apart from it." He points out, however, the secular character of modern drama subordinates the "thing done and its metaphysical implications" to the "manner of doing and the personal capacity of the doer.” In modern drama, then, the actor's performance becomes much more important , and the actor himself becomes a "creator" and not merely an "interpreter. While not denying the existence and importance of "literary" dramatic criticism. Ward would have it known that it is equally important to assess the playwright's capacity to translate that material into living terms. However, he notes: This view ... may not command general assent, for writers have long exercised an awful authority, and so long as critics are themselves drawn from the literary fold that authority will not be seriously shaken. But there is a good case for attempting to shake it when the dramatic critic neglects the unique thing he should do for the familiar thing he need not do. Each generation can and will undertake its own literary criticism, but when an actor is dead every word of comment by his contemporaries becomes precious. What would we not give for an adequate account by an eye-witness of a performance during the festival of Dionysus at Athens in the fifth century, B. C., of a Shakespeare performance during the author's lifetime, or even of certain later occasions in the history of the theatre . 6 Slbid., p. 3. 6lbid.

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k Theatrical criticism, therefore, has its own raison d’etre as well as literary dramatic criticism, and the theatrical criticism which embodies eye-witness accounts of actors and their acting techniques becomes an invaluable source to the student who would attempt to recreate the actor’s performance of a past era. This study of American theatrical criticism during the twentyfive year period following the end of the War of 1812 is limited, therefore, to that which deals with the actor and the techniques of his performance. Indeed, there was little for the theatrical critic to write about except the actor. As Freedley and Reeves state, "New plays were not frequently produced and the audience attended the playhouse to judge the relative merits of the acting. It was an era of rivalries. "7 Extant theatre records testify to the fact that the same plays were produced over and over, thus enabling the playgoers to know them almost as well as the actors, and lending credence to the critics's remarks that it was unnecessary to say anything of the play itself, since the readers were certainly familiar with it. 8 The choice of the dates, 1815 to l8i|0, is not so arbitrary as to preclude a relationship to the study of acting techniques. There are several considerations which mark this period as an age that lends itself to a study. The first of these considerations is that it has been generally neglected. To be sure, George Odell delved deeply into this body of 7George Freedley and John A. Reeves, A History of the Theatre (New York, 19U1), p. 303. ®See, for instance, the New York Mirror and Ladies' Literary Gazette , October 10, 1829, p. 110.

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5 theatrical criticism in his history of the New York stage, but not for the purpose of analyzing acting techniques. His major concern was to produce a chronicle of theatre events.? Historians and critics of drama have appeared reluctant to admit to their histories and critiques any study of theatrical criticism, and those who mention it at all tend to set the beginning of American dramatic criticism in the l81*0's with the dramatic opinions of Poe and Whitman. Others consider nothing prior to 1870.1° Barrett H. Clark, for example, records no American dramatic criticism prior to 1900, dismissing nineteenth-century criticism as mere accounts of acting and staging, and implying that, since no '‘dramatic theories” were developed, such criticism was not worth including. H Moses and Brown represent the period with only two examples of theatrical criticism, both from the New York Evening Post . I 2 The research of Merrill Christophersen indicates, however, that significant criticism was published prior to 18U0, the terminal date of this study. 13 He notes also that of its three main categories, "literary," "moralistic," and "theatrical," the latter, which deals with the actor's performance, comprises the largest part of that criticism. It would appear, then, that ?George C. D. Odell, Annals of the New York Stage (IS vols.; New York, 1927-19U9), I, xi. IQMerrill G. Christophersen, "Early American Dramatic Criticism," Southern Speech Journal , XXI (Spring, 1956), 195* llBarrett H. Clark, European Theories of the Drama with a Supple ment on the American Drama (New York, 19iit), p. 12Montrose J. Moses and John Mason Brown, The American Theatre as Seen by Its Critics 1752-193U (New York, 193U), pp. ii8-$9. 13christophersen, Southern Speech Journal , XXI, 196.

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6 the period in question possesses a body of critical materials which, although normally overlooked, can be employed to provide an insight into the theatre of the time, and especially the acting techniques peculiar to it. The chief justification for the study of acting in this period rests on the fact that it is not only a period of great actors and great acting, but also one in which the native American actor began to achieve stardom and to be recognized both at home and abroad. Freedley and Reeves call the period from 181? to 190?, "America's Age of Actors."^ During the period from 181? to 181*0, the roster of stars appearing at the Park Theatre in New York, which, at that time, represented the acme of theatrical entertainment in this country,^ serves as an indication of this trend. The year l 8 l? marks the beginning of a period which Odell describes as follows: This period showed to the New York public a succession of great performers probably never since equalled — a list including Edmund Kean, Macready, Malibran, Junius Brutus Booth, the elder Mathews, Charles Kean, Charles and Fanny Kemble, James and Heniy Wallaek, Dowton, Hackett, Cooper, Mr. and Mrs. Hamblin, John Vandenhoff, Charlotte Cushman, Placide, Fanny Elssler, Ellen Tree — the very noblest of the players and singers and dancers of the past.^ Not only was the period one in which many great English and European actors made their debuts in the United States, but it was also a period in which the American star began to emerge. Edwin Forrest made ^Freedley and Reeves, History of the Theatre, p. 303 . 15 Glenn Hughes, A History of the American Theatre 17 00-19? 0 (New York, 19?1), p. 90. 3-6 Ode 11 , Annals, II, 1*1*6

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7 his New York debut in 1826, after making his first appearance at the age of fourteen at PhiladelphiaÂ’s Walnut Street Theatre. The same year James H. Hackett, who later achieved fame as the best Falstaff both in England and America, made his bow on the New York stage . ^ Charlotte Cushman, another native American, made her debut in New York ten years later. The influence of this period did much to form her technique, even though her career belongs principally to a later time. The period from 1815 to I8ii0, when viewed in terms of the great actors and the American stars who emerged to achieve fame in their own country and abroad, offers a wealth of material for the study of acting techniques. The period from I8l5 to 181|0 also falls within what histories and criticisms of American letters call the "National Period," a designation given to a time when the country began to establish itself as a political, social, and cultural entity, With the feeling that the nation could maintain itself among the powers of the world, a genuine American spirit began to pervade the politics, society, and literature of the country. Following the War of 1812, the nation's periodicals reflected the growing feeling that America could develop its own literature free from foreign influence. ^9 Charvat has pointed to a similar unity in literary production between 1810 and 1835, claiming that "within its [the period's] limits, 17walter Pritchard Eaton in Dictionary of American Biography , s.v. "Forrest, Edwin." l%dwin Harrison Cady, Frederick J. Hoffman and Roy Harvey Pearce, The Growth of American Literature (2 vols.j New York, 1956), I, 231. 19john C. McCloskey, "The Campaign of the Periodicals after the War of 1812 for a National American Literature," Publications of the Modem Language Association , L (193?)> 262.

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8 Bryant, Dana, Percival, Halleck, and Drake produced their most important poetry; Cooper, Irving, and Paulding their best fiction; Payne, Barker, and Bird their best plays. "20 The advent of this "national" spirit not only resulted in an elevation of the state of American literary drama between l8l5> and I 8 I 4 O, but in the growth and development in other theatrical areas as well. The period encompasses a growth pattern and a resurgence of interest in the theatre which Odell characterizes as the "Palmy Days" of the American theatre. 21 Proof of this fact can be found by comparing the public's attitude toward the theatre at the beginning of the period with that which prevailed at its height. 1817, when the American Monthly Magazine began its department called "The Thespian Register," the critic was forced to offer an apologia for such an undertaking, saying, in parts We have thought it necessary to say this imich in vindication of theatrical entertainments, because we are aware that many good people indulge in a prejudice against them. We are induced to notice the performances on the New York boards in the hope of purging from our stage those impurities which given too strong grounds for those prejudices. 22 In April of 1826, however, the critic on the New York Mirror noted that all classes of society were then to be found within the walls of a playhouse, and later that season, on October 28, it was 20^iiiiam Charvat, The Origins of American Critical Thought 1810-1835 (Philadelphia, 1936), p. 2. 2l0dell, Annals , II, HU 6 . 22 American Monthly Magazine and Critical Review [ad. H. Biglow], May, 1817, p. 23 New York Mirror , April 1, 1826, p. 287. have

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i 9 estimated that the attendance the previous Monday evening at the four theatres in New York totaled eight thousand. 21* By 1827, the Mirror had to employ a second reviewer, since it was impossible for one person to cover all the theatrical productions then currently running. 2 ^ In June of I836, the London correspondent for the Albion wrote his magazine that "No people on earth patronize theatrical talent as well as the Americans. "26 Further testimony to the popularity of the theatre at this time may be found in records of the money which the star actors took in on their benefit nights. The popularity of the theatre was such that the star actor, in contrast to the artists and literary figures who found it difficult to make a living from the practice of their art, 2 ? not only found it possible to make a living in the theatre, but often acquired considerable wealth. In 1833 , the Mirror reported that Cooper's "recent benefit" was the largest on record, netting lit, 500, while on other occasions Payne had received "$ii,200 and Dunlap $3,19U»50. 2 ® The magazine went on to compare Idles e amounts with the $3,277.77 which represented the largest amount Kean received at the Drury Lane Theatre, and with the $2,802.50 which represented the most that the great Talma had ever amassed at the Theatre Francaise. 2 ^ %bid., October 28, 1826, p. 111. 2 $Ibid ., November 2U, 1827, p. 159. 2 ^The Albion, or British, Colonial, and Foreign Weekly , June 25, I836, p. 207. For similar statements see the Mirror, September 10, I836, p, 86. 27charvat, Origins, p. 5. 2®New York Mirror , November 23, 1833, p. 167. 29lbid.

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10 While these and similar reports identify the period as one of distinctive theatrical growth, it should be noted that its end corresponds to a leveling off and decline in that interest and growth. By 1838, the Mirror was noting the "frequent closings of the minor theatres . "30 The following year the same journal reported that the season at the Park was a losing one, but held out hopes for the next season. 31 The critic’s hopes did not materialize, however, and he was forced to record that "in this city, the headquarters of the drama, the season has been particularly inauspicious." 32 Other periodicals, such as the Boston Dial , in 181*2, noted without regret the coldness of the public to theatrical exhibitions, since it appeared that drama and the histrionic art seemed dead or dying. 33 By 181*5, the Broadway Journal reported that readers cared nothing about gossip of theatres and that dramatic entertainment was not popular. 3 ^ Later in the decade, the Literary World said the year 181*7 marked a low point of depression for for the New York stage. 3 ^ By the beginning of the forties, then, a period of theatre popularity and growth had come full circle, thus establishing a natural terminal point for this study. 30fUew York Mirror , February 10, I838, p. 262. 3 1lbid ., February 2, 1839, p. 256. 3 2 Ibid., February 29, 181*0, p. 286. 33Frank Luther Mott, A History of American Magazines 171*1-1850 (New York, 1930), p. 1*30. 3l* Ibid « 3 *Ibid.

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11 Another problem which the student of acting faces involves the necessity for finding first-hand, eye-witness accounts of what the actor actually did to receive the plaudits of critic and audience. Some of this criticism is to be found in biographies of actors, in theatrical reminiscences of actors, managers, and historians, and in accounts of their techniques by the actors themselves. Caution must be exercised, however, in the employment of such materials, since the biographer may be biased in his opinion, 3 6 0 r he may never have seen the actor perform at all. Actors have achieved reputations as "acting giants" on the basis of accounts handed down from generation to generation, although criticism written during the actor’s lifetime does not provide a basis for such reputation. 3? In order to avoid these difficulties, the sources employed in this study have been limited to those theatrical criticisms of acting found in the general periodicals published in Boston, New York, and Philadelphia between 1815 and 181*0. Since this period may claim the appelation of a "golden age of magazines, "3® and since the magazines reflect other factors of the age so vell,39 it may be expected that these periodicals will effectively mirror the theatre's role in the life of the time, and reflect the standards which the audience and critic 3&as was perhaps true of William R. Alger's Life of Forrest (Philadelphia, 1877). On this point, see Montrose J. Moses, The Fabulous Forrest (Boston, 1929), pp. vii-ix. 3 7 Ode 11 , in, 87-88. 38Mott, History of American Magazines , pp. $2h-2$. 39see above, p. 9

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12 demanded of its players. Furthermore, we may expect a generally unprejudiced view of the actor from these critics who went to the theatre night after night, saw all the great actors in all their great roles, compared one with the other, and even at times fearlessly pointed out "improprieties" in their performances. Perhaps the most authoritative study of this type of source material has been Frank Luther Mott's study of American magazines. Certainly his study can claim pre-eminence from the standpoint of its analytical examination of the content of American magazines. ^0 He has pointed to the fact that the quarter century prior to 1825 was characterized by the rise of "special class periodicals," among which were those devoted to the theatre.^These theatrical publications, however, were generally short-lived. In the period following 1825, few theatrical journals were published, and theatrical criticism was, for the most part, left to the general periodicals and newspapers.^ New York was rapidly becoming the publishing center of the country during this period. By mid-century the census reports were giving the annual circulations of New York periodicals as fifty per cent higher than those of Boston or Philadelphia.^ Not only were these cities the major centers for the publishing of periodicals, they k^It is the "standard history of the magazine," and "furnishes foundations studies and analyses for both general and special reference." See Robert E. Spiller et al ., eds.. Literary History of the United States i Bibliography (New York, 19^8 ),p. 69. k^Mott, History of American Magazines , p. 165. k 2 Ibid., p. U27. ^3 Ibid., p. 375-80

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13 were also the leading centers for theatrical activity, with theatrical leadership passing from Philadelphia to New York sometime between 1800 and 1825. ^ Although the actors travelled extensively to Richmond and Charleston, and even to New Orleans and the West, Boston, Philadelphia, and New York remained the nucleus of their activities. Given the supremacy of these centers in the publishing and theatrical fields, and the preeminence of their periodicals in theatrical criticism, it would appear reasonable to assume that the periodicals published in these cities reflect the best in criticism of the acting of the period. It is certain that those actors who gained any sort of reputation eventually found their way to one or all of these cities and were consequently described by the critics writing for the periodicals. Such criticism, even limited in this way, will enable the student to check the critics* opinions in Boston against those in New York and Philadelphia, He may thus be able to arrive at standards generally prevailing and to eliminate, to some degree, the personal biases of the critics. With MottÂ’s recommendations of periodicals carrying the best theatrical criticism of this period as a guide, it would appear that the theatrical scene is best reflected in the following periodicals. The theatre in Boston may be covered with the American Monthly Magazine (1829-1831) and the New England Galaxy and Masonic Magazine (1817-I83I4) . The New York scene may be represented by the theatrical criticism appearing in the Albion: A Journal of News, Politics, and Literature (1822-1876), the American Monthly Magazine (I833-I838), the American k%u$ies. History of the American Theatre , p. 90.

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11 * Monthly Magazine and Critical Review (1817-1819), and the New York Mirror and Ladles 1 Literary Gazette (1823-181*2). For the theatre in Philadelphia, the American Quarterly Review (1827-181*3), Burton’s Gentleman’s Magazine (1837-181*0), and the Port Folio (1801-1827) give the best coverage.^ Beyond the problems of establishing time limits and sources suitable for a study of acting, it becomes necessary to consider still another factor. Acting is not an easy subject to discuss. A part of the difficulty arises from the fact that, although they may have changed their content and meaning in the meantime, terms which presumably identify or characterize styles of acting are handed down from generation to generation* In an attempt to illuminate an acting style of the past, a latter-day critic may assign to these terms meanings which have been acquired in his own day. The reputation of the elder Booth, for instance, could hardly have been based on the judgment of his contemporary critics .^6 The eighteenth and nineteenth century critics' use of the terms "natural” or "realistic" in describing the acting of Garrick, Edmund Kean, or Edwin Booth does not authorize the modem critic to place their acting styles in the framework of present-day naturalistic acting. The student of acting may avoid such difficulties by taking into consideration only eye-witness accounts of actors. But even these accounts do not always solve the problems involved in the process of characterizing so evanescent a thing as acting. The actor leaves li^Mott, History of American Magazines, pp. 165-57 J 1*27. k^OdeH, Annals, in, 87.

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15 behind him no concrete product by which the future critic or historian can test the meanings of the terms which represent judgments on his actual performance. If the critic is to illuminate the histrionic art of another age, he must discover a set of criteria belonging to that age, a set of criteria which will provide an understanding of the nature of its standards of excellence. If we accept Paul Kozelka's view that the standard criterion for good acting in any age seems to be the extent to which the actor moved his audience, k? the method which the critic adopts for the study of acting must be one which will reveal what it was the actor did when he moved his audience, and what standards the actor had to satisfy before audiences put the stamp of excellence on his acting. Failure to employ these standards to discover the meanings of the terms and labels used in the original evaluation of an actorÂ’s product may produce the same weakness which George Kernodle has discovered in Helen Ormsbee's history of acting. He points out that she did little to clarify the nature of early acting as a result of assuming, in spite of her discovery that eveiy age has considered its good actors as "realistic," that "formal" and "realistic" represent two opposing methods of acting techniques which prevailed in alternate periods. ^9 U7paul Kozelka, "Theatrical and Dramatic Criticism, and Commentaries on Acting," A Selected Bibliography and Critical Comment on the Art, Theory, and Technique of Acting (Ann Arbor, 19U8), p. 23. ^Kernodle is referring to Helen OrmsbeeÂ’s Backstage with Actors : from the Time of Shakespeare to the Present Day (New York, 1928). ^George Kernodle, "Histories of Acting and Dictionaries of Acting," A Selected Bibliography . . . , p. 5.

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16 In his critical comments on other histories of acting, Xemodle maintains that the method used by Downer, in analyzing nineteenthcentury acting, fares somewhat better, since he "uses a few concepts from literary history and criticism to good advantage and makes telling distinctions between several schools and traditions of acting."^® Kemodle adds that "until we gather more descriptive accounts of actors, it is hard to see how the descriptive method can be carried further." He then goes on to suggest various methods which might be employed in the study of acting* first, "further analysis of aesthetic principles in literature and painting might throw a great deal of light on acting)" second, acting may be approached through a study of theatre conventions) third, a study of "convention— the diagrams of communication" may give the key to what "realism" and "verisimilitude" really meant in each period) and finally by relating what is known of an actor to the plays which were written for him.^ The present study of acting proposes to employ a method which might, in Kemodle' s terms, be referred to as one using the "diagrams of communication" to illuminate the descriptions of acting styles. Actually a better term might be "paradigms" of communication — t o use a term from the critical method of Kenneth Burke. By "paradigm" is meant, not a superimposed, artificial pattern, but rather one which represents (as the paradigm of a verb does) existing patterns prevailing in the communicative system. It had been the work of the elocutionists, for 5 °Ibid Sllbid

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17 nearly a century to search out patterns of the spoken language and attempt to describe them in such a way that they would provide criteria of excellence for users of the language. By the time the period of this study opens, the elocutionists had developed a body of principles and rules which they had refined and elaborated. These teachings were widely known and accepted in America. It is not improbable that the critic, as well as the actor, had come under their influence and tended to criticize the actorÂ’s delivery in terms developed originally for the criticism of the public speaker's delivery. It may be inferred that, in so far as the critic tends to describe acting styles in the same terms which the elocutionist used in setting standard patterns for the orator to follow, a relationship exists between the two. When critics generally depart from these terms, or modify their criticism in other directions, it is probable that the general acting style has changed or is changing to such an extent that the terms describing the old conventional patterns no longer suffice. In summary, then, this study proposes to analyze acting styles and techniques as described by the theatrical critics in the periodicals of the three major theatrical and publishing centers of Boston, New York, and Philadelphia from 1815 to 181*0. The period has been chosen as one which represents the beginning of many American cultural characteristics, and one in which the theatre developed as an American institution. The period, one of great actors, encouraged the development of a body of theatrical criticism which emphasizes the actor's contribution. This, in itself, makes it a period ideally suited to the study of acting. In view of the difficulties in the study of acting, the method chosen for this

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18 study is one which attempts to apply the conventional patterns of communication described by the elocutionists to the patterns of acting described by the theatrical critic. Such a method, it is hoped, will reveal the meanings of terms as they were used in that day and identify the elements which wBnt to make up a given school of acting.

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CHAPTER I ELOCUTIONARY BASES OF AMERICAN THEATRICAL CRITICISM When attempting to establish or define the acting style of a period on the basis of prevailing communicative patterns, it may be helpful to bear in mind that the relationship between the arts of oratory and acting is an ancient one. Indeed, the origins of the precepts governing both can be traced to a common source. It is perhaps significant that Aristotle placed what comment he had to make about the actor*s delivery, not in the Poetics , a treatise on the art of the drama, but in the Rhetoric ,^ a treatise on the art of speaking. After Aristotle, the practice of relating the two arts persisted. As Donald Lemen Clark has remarked, "All who discuss oratorial delivery from Aristotle on are given to referring to its similarity to acting.” 2 While ancient actors left no direct written record of their art, their performances, we know, were strongly influenced by the art of oratory. In tracing this relationship. Cole and Chinoy have pointed out that The earliest codified principles of public delivery leaned heavily on the art of Thespis. Precepts for orators, thus derived in part from histrionic practice, were later erroneously adopted in toto by actors. Althou^i we have discarded Aristotle, Rhetoric , U03 b 31 ff.* UiOb b 22 j llil3 b 11 ff., 28 ff.j trans. W. Rhys Robert (New York, 1951i). » ' . •• ' ... , t JV # Donald Lemen Clark, Rhetoric in Greco-Roman Education (New York, 1957), p. 10. 19

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20 the rhetoricians' books as guides, they still reflect the practice of ancient actors and contain the roots of the actor's tradition. 3 Cicero showed that he was aware of the affinities existing between the actor's and orator's art of delivery, and was himself instructed by the Roman actor, Roscius. ^ Quintilian based his instruction in voice and gesture on the practice of Roman actors. While Quintilian was careful to differentiate between the arts of acting and oratory, later writers on acting techniques ignored that distinction and based their instruction on his precepts for orators.-’ This Roman tradition, preserved throughout the Dark Ages and brought to England following the Conquest, formed the basis of the English acting tradition.^ The rhetorical aspects of one phase of this tradition, the Elizabethan, have been treated at length by B. L. Joseph, ? and it should be noted that Flecknoe's hipest praise for the Elizabethan actor, Burbage, was that he possessed "all the parts of an excellent orator. • • ."® Betterton, author of one of the earliest manuals for actors and a dominant figure on the Restoration and eighteenth-century stage, was said to have derived his precepts from Quintilian. ^ In turn, Betterton’s style was replaced by an equally oratorical one which, under the 3Toby Cole and Helen Krich Chinoy (eds.). Actors on Acting (New York, 19^9) , p. xxii. Bridges -Adams, The Irresistible Theatre (London, 19!?7), P8. J>Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting , p. 26. %ridges-Adams, Irresistible Theatre , pp, 9, 196 ff. 7b. L. Joseph, Elizabethan Acting (London, 195>2). ^Quoted in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting, p. 91. 9lbid. t p. 96.

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21 Influence of the French theatre, was marked by "vocal pyrotechnics and exagerrated actions," "musically cadenced speech," and "monotonous declamation." 10 According to Murdoch, before the advent of Garrick, English acting was marked by a mannerism which reflected the old chanting tone of the church and the collegians' concept of Greek and Roman dignity.il The eighteenth century itself became an era when "declamation roared and passion slept. n1 ^ This, the century in which the English elocution movement had its period of greatest development, if not its beginning, was characterized by dramatic criticism which was "mainly concerned with the actor's adherence to tradition handed down from Shakespeare's company," 13 a tradition already noted for its oratorical aspects. In spite of the widely-hailed "natural style" of Garrick, the critic of the period continued to praise the actor "for preserving the accents and gestures of his predecessors." 1 ! It was this acting tradition, with its oratorical trademarks and origins, that the first English actors brought to America and which was preserved through the first part of the nineteenth century. A Boston critic noted that Cooper's performance of Macbeth on November 9, 1818 was^not marred by a single new reading and ... we observed 10 Ibid., p. 9k . 11 James Murdoch, The Stage or Recollections of Actors and Acting (Cincinnati, 188!*), p. 6 6, ^ole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting, p. 95. 13 Ibid. . p. 96. %bid., p. 96.

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22 his rigid adherence to the commonly received punctuation. . Indeed, Murdoch describes a "teapot style" of acting still to be found on the American stage in the 1830* s. / IiTthis style of acting a chanting tone of voice accompanied the formal gesture of one hand on the hip. In such a tradition of acting, direct communication with the audience made illusionistic character portrayal impossible, and the actor became a performer, exhibiting himself rather than identifying himself with a actor declaimed his lines directly to the audience, and that of the orator is obvious. It is not surprising then to find the elocutionist of this period holding up the actor as the model which the aspiring orator should imitate, much as Quintilian had done centuries before. The use of oratorical precepts in a study of nineteenth-century American acting techniques need not, however, rest solely an the basis of the traditional relationship between these two arts. There are other factors in the period from l8lf> to 181*0 which establish a common ground between the arts of oratory and acting and make an oratorical analysis of theatrical performances not only feasible, but perhaps the best method for determining the components of the acting styles of the time. The acting under consideration, and the descriptions and evaluations of it, originated at a moment in AmericaÂ’s cultural history when public performances of actors, orators, oral readers, ministers, lawyers, and ^Murdoch, The Stage, p. 1*9. l^John Gassner, Form and Idea in Modem Theatre (New lork, 1956), pp. 2^-26. the other hand moving in curved lines gradually descending to the side .15 close relationship between this style, in which the

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23 others who had occasion to speak in public were being criticized on the basis of a set of standards put forth by the English elocutionists.^ This criticism, as it was directed to the orator, became in many cases "dramatic." In his examination of this "dramatic criticism of oratory and of the critics who analyzed oral delivery in the periodicals of nineteenth-century America, Barnett Baskerville came to the conclusion* Critics admired what it was fashionable to admire, and in a manner acceptable at the time. Speakers obliged by producing oratory of the kind that was admired. Rhetoricians and schoolmaster’s observed great orators in action and formulated principles on the basis of what they saw. In such a continuous chain it is impossible to distinguish cause from effectj all were causes and all effects. Each acted on the other, and together they contributed to the forming of public taste, to establish the fashion.^-® The critic not only respected the fashionable preferences of the audience in the matter of oratorical style, but also reflected other attitudes and points of view peculiar to the age. Among other things, he evidenced concern for "correctness" in language usage. It was a time when the use of language, the actor's and the orator's chief province, was being given increased emphasis and careful scrutiny. Dictionaries and grammars dedicated to "ascertaining" or fixing the language were readily available, while books written by the elocutionists were describing standards for "correct" articulation, pause, force, rate and other aspects of the spoken language. Prior to this time, correct speech had been the prerogative of an aristocratic and cultured group. 17Marie Hochmuth and Richard Murphy, "Rhetorical and Elocutionary Training in Nineteenth-Century Colleges," History of Speech Education , Background Studies , ed. Karl R. Wallace (New York, 195 &)» pp. l6l-162. l^Bamet Baskerville, "The Dramatic Criticism of Oratory," Quarterly Journal of Speech [QJS], XLV (February, 1 959), U5.

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2it even in America. 1? j n the nineteenth century, however, it became an insignia of equality, perhaps on the assumption that he who spoke "correctly" could become the equal of anyone no matter what his rank might be. This consciousness of language usage was given greater impetus by the notion that one could become a powerful person by becoming an effective speaker. Periodicals, as a result of their frequent references to the power of oratory, were making large segments of the population conscious of the importance of oral skills. Typical of this point of view is one critic's published conviction that love of power is one of the strongest of passions and in free governments, eloquence one of the most honorable means to attain power. 20
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2 $ itself. The country was expanding, pushing its borders farther westward. A romantic movement, fairly launched during the period, was extending the frontiers of the mind. 22 it was a time which "demanded orators, ministers, lecturers, and actors who could make themselves heard over the noise of a lusty and vociferous populace. "23 Mott, quoting from the New York Review and Atheneum , suggests the extent to which that demand was satisfied. He notes How small a part the [orations] are of the works issuing from the European presses, and how large a part of our own. . . . All sorts of public occasions call for these discourses, and orators of all classes and degrees of merit are called upon to deliver them. ...2ft Robb has also called attention to the fact that: The oratory of this period proclaimed the ideals of America and debated her problems j the lyceum popularized the lecture as a form of entertainment combined with instruction j and the theatre, especially in urban centers, became an accepted part of the cultural pattern. When Puritan restraints were somewhat relaxed, the public which had been starved overlong demanded a generous and hearty fare in all public speech. 2 % Commager, in his analysis of the American mind, claims that the American of this era was in many ways spontaneous and not introspective, sentimental and fond of "rolling rhetoric in his orators," and inclined to indulge in "orgies of sentiment" on every Fourth of July and Decoration 22Mary Margaret Robb, "The Elocutionary Movement and lbs Chief Figures," History of Speech 'Education , p. 178. See also Henry B. Parkes, The American Experience (2nd ed. rev.; New York, 19ft7)> pp. Ift9, 187-188. 23Robb, in History of Speech Education , p. 179. 2ftMott, History of American Magazines , pp. I8ft-l8£. 25Robb, in History of Speech Education , p. 179.

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26 Day. 26 Howard E. Martin, after analyzing the speaking undertaken on these occasions, concluded it helped to "perpetuate and reinforce a peculiar rhetorical tradition and standard of popular eloquence. "27 This demand for speakers gave rise to a demand for training in elocution. The call was answered by many, among them individuals who, in choosing to become teachers, deserted the professions of medicine and the theatre. 28 James E. Murdoch^ 9 and George Vandenhoff30 were actors who turned elocutionists. Lemuel G. White, "a frustrated actor," instructed Forrest, Murdoch, and the "silver-tongued" David Ingersoll in elocution.31 These actors followed in the tradition of Thomas Sheridan and John Walker, English actors, who had become teachers of elocution and authors of books on the subject. The demand for instruction in the art of elocution was as great or greater in America than in the country of its origin. "Both the purposes and the books which the elocutionists wrote to accomplish them, were eagerly 2 %enry Steele Commager, The American Mind (New Haven, 1950) , p. 2 lu 27noward H. Martin, "The Fourth of July Oration," QJS, XLIV (December, 1958), 393-iiOl. 28Robb, in History of Speech Education, p. 179. 29in addition to The Stage, cited above, Murdoch wrote Analytic Elocution (Cincinnati and New York, 1881*) A Plea for the Spoken Language (Cincinnati and New York, 1883 ). 3Qleorge Vandenhoff, Plain System of Elocution (New York, 181*5). 33-Lawrence Barrett, Edwin Forrest (Boston, 1881), p. 11*

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27 accepted in America, "32 until inevitably, a group of native writers and teachers was to arise and take over the direction of the movement in this country. In addition to its demand for actors, orators, and individuals able to instruct in the art of speaking, the period also developed a need for criticism of the acting and the speaking being produced. The periodicals of the time abound in criticisms of actors and orators. Articles in the Boston Galaxy , for instance, demonstrate how widespread the interest in criticism of public speakers was at this time. Pointing out the right of everyone to discuss the excellencies and defects of all public men, to compare their talents and assess their merits, the critic said: Hie advocate, the statesman, the preacher, and the judge, are subjects of constant and minute criticism. How Mr. C. or Mr, H. preached, how judge P. or judge J« charged the jury, are the common topics of literary and fashionable conversation and though there may be much bad criticism and many erroneous opinions given, yet, on the whole the disposition of the public to discuss such subjects has many advantages. 33 Obviously referring to actors, he goes on to say that those whose job it is to amuse must expect that the public will discuss their merits and defects with still more freedom, 3h Hie following year the Galaxy published a letter from a correspondent who entered his protest at the journal ‘s recent neglect of theatrical entertainments which he liked to read even when he did not agree with them.35 i n 1821, when Kean was to 32Frederick W. Haberman, "English Sources of Elocution," History of Speech Education, p, 122. 3 3New England Galaxy , April 17, 1818, n.p. 3l »Ibid . 3 5lbid . , (February 5, 1819), n.p.

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28 make his debut in Boston, the critic begged the indulgence of his non-theatre going readers for devoting more space than ordinary to the theatre. He gave as his reason that it was "not likely that another event of equal magnitude, occupying equal portion of public feeling and conversation, producing equal excitement, and generating so many discordant opinions" would occur more than once in the life of an individual editor. 3 ^ The individuals who undertook to satisfy the need or demand for criticism in this speech-dominated period tended to look for an oratorical quality in the dramatic fare to which they gave their attention. Speaking of the theatre in his analysis of popular recreation in the period, Foster Rhea Dulles has noted: The play necessarily conformed to the taste of the democratic audience. Shakespeare was the favorite vehicle of the stars —and the theatre-going public appears to have hugely enjoyed the dramatic and fervid oratory, "the rant and cant," which marked their acting of the tragedies. It was an age of oratory, of theatric alism. The actors were the rivals of Clay, Calhoun, and Webster, and they had to outdo them at their own trade. 3 7 A contemporary critic, reviewing a performance of Charles and Fanny Kemble, reports that Mr. Webster attended the theatre. As soon as he was seated, word was passed along that the great Mr. Webster was in the audience. Tne critic went on to say: Soon the audience were turning their eyes, opera-glasses, spectacles on Mr. Webster. We left the theatre with a settled conviction that Miss Kemble, Mr. Kemble, and Mr. Webster were three great persons — and they may gainsay us who please. 3° 3 6ibid . (February 16, 1821), n.p. 37Foster Rhea Dulles, America Learns to Flay (New fork, 19U0), pp. 110-111. 38nsw York Mirror, April 6, 1833, p. 318.

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29 Baskerville, in his study of the criticism of oratory in the period considered in this study, isolated a "dramatic criticism" which he described as one which placed its emphasis upon the speaker rather than the speech and upon the "startling aspects" of the speaker's the audience's favor as a popular idol, and was admired for his oratorical ability. It is likely, therefore, that the elements common to both these arts formed the basis of the criticism of them. We may then do well to inquire as to the nature of the basic precepts which the critic of acting adopted from the critic of public speaking, and which lent themselves so readily to the criticism of the actor of the time. From the definition of Thomas Sheridan, we can derive the major elements underlying the spoken product of the period. For nearly a century speakers and teachers accepted as their doctrine his concept of elocution^ 0 which held that j~A~ just delivery consists in a distinct articulation of words, pronounced in proper tones, suitably varied to the sense, and the emotions of the mind} with due observations of accent} of emphasis, in its several gradations} of rests or pauses of the voice, in proper place and well measured degrees of time} and the whole accompanied with expressive looks, and significant / Sheridan was one of the most influential orthoeplsts of his time, and his dictionary, with its descriptions of the sounds of the language and 3?Baskerville, QJS, XLV, Ii5. liC&aberman, in History of Speech Education , p. 108. ^•Thomas Sheridan, A Course of Lectures on Elocution (A new ed., London, 1787), p. 10. deli very .3 9 The actor, on the other hand, competed with the orator for

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30 the system of notation which he worked out for indicating them, remained authoritative for more than eighty years, bringing its influence to bear on Noah Webster, Beyond the doctrine and method of Sheridan, the critics of the period, as the actors themselves, had available elocutionary theory and elocutionary systems that covered numerous phases of the actor's performance, Joshua Steele, for instance, had devised a means of "recording" speech so that it could be reproduced by another speaker. This system of notation for "establishing the melody and measure" of speech indicated not only the sounds composing the individual words, but also the accent, emphasis, quantity, and pause. ^2 James Burgh, on the other hand, studied the expression of emotion, the very core of the drama, and put forth the theory that "nature gave to every emotion its outward expression and that from nature the whole art of speaking properly is to be deduced, "U3 He drew up a list of the various emotions and attempted to describe the "outward expression" of each, John Walker contributed to the knowledge and standards of vocal inflection which, when employed by speaker or reader, would enable him to speak eloquently in imitation of "beautiful nature . "UU Gilbert Austin provided performers of the period with rules for the use of bodily action in delivery. He attempted to describe exactly every bodily position possible for the ^2 Joshua Steele, An Essay toward Establishing the Melody and Measure of Speech (London, 1775),' ^3 jamas Bur$i, The Art of Speaking (London, 1761), p, 12. k^John Walker, A Rhetorical Grammar (2nd Am. ed.j Boston, 1822), p. 5o.

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31 public speaker, assign each position and gesture a definite use, and record these positions and gestures with a set of symbols which could be inserted into a text, thus giving a speaker or reader a precise gesture and body position which he could assume at every moment in the speech . to Whately, whose work also exerted an influence on the oral patterns of the period, insisted upon the "natural manner" in elocution, a manner which he described as one in which the speaker gives no thought to "how a thing is said," but solely to the "sense" of the passage read or spoken. ^ While the preceding standards of effectiveness for the spoken word were derived from English authorities on elocution, the performers of the period also had a body of American theory upon which they could construct their art. One of the most influential of these native elocutionists was Dr. James Rush whose analysis of the voice into its elements was to have far-reaching effects in the work of Jonathan Barber, the actor-teacher James E. Murdoch, and others. k? Some American elocutionists took issue with the Whately doctrine of "naturalness," as did Ebenezer Porter in whose opinion Whately* s advice was wholly useless. ^Gilbert Austin, Chironomla; or a Treatise on Rhetorical Delivery (London, 1806), pp. 293-372. ^Richard Whately, Elements of Rhetoric (7th ed.j London, 181*6) , p. 352. ^7 James Rush, The Philosophy of the Human Voice (1st ed.j Philadelphia, 1827 )j Jonathan Barber, A Grammar of Elocution (New Haven, 1830) j Jfiirdoch, Analytic Elocution . ' k®Ebenezer Porter, The Rhetorical Reader (Andover, 1835), p. 16.

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32 An examination of the elocutionary theory prevalent between 1815 and 181|0 reveals a concern with oral delivery in reading, as well as in speaking. The elocutionist generally dealt with the delivery of the speaker or reader under five main divisions! pronunciation of words, vocal production and raanagemsnt, bodily activity and gesture, expression of emotion, and how to achieve naturalness. An analysis of the theatrical criticism published in American periodicals between 1815 and 181*0 indicates that the theatrical critic based his judgments of the actorÂ’s performance on these same elements. It would appear, then, that the five categories established by the elocutionists encompass very well the components of the acting which critics of the period emphasized. Furthermore, the elocutionary precepts for pronunciation, voice, gesture, emotional portrayal, and naturalness would seem particularly suitable to an evaluation of the acting styles which prevailed in the period under review. Not all theatrical critics, of course, emphasized these five elements in the same degree, but practically all relied on them as criteria for determining the actorÂ’s excellence or weakness. This tendency to use elocutionary standards in theatrical criticism becomes even more understandable when we examine the extent of the actorÂ’s and critic's practical acquaintance with these elocutionary precepts. One actor by the name of John B. Rice became known among his fellow actors as "Walker Elocution Rice,Â’ 1 so closely did he follow the prescriptions of WalkerÂ’s elocutionary precepts. ^9 when the actor had instruction outside the theatre, he was apt to be taught by an elocutionist, as Murdoch and Forrest were by White. In addition, those who k?Murdoch, The Stage, p. 1*9.

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received all their training as apprentices on the stage itself were influenced by a style of acting which had formed the basis for some of the earliest elocutionary precepts. The editors of the periodicals, who were also theatrical critics, had an even more thorough grounding in the principles taught by the elocutionists. The editor of the New England Galaxy < for example , was certainly familiar with elocution, since he was able to criticize a lecture on M elocution and chironomia" and assert that the speaker’s object must have been to try to disprove Walker's system of elocution, a feat which was quite beyond his powers. This editor, Joseph T. Buckingham, points out that Mr. Turner, the lecturer, gave "proofs irresistible" of his lack of Tinderstanding of the simple elements on which Walker’s system was founded. With reference to a program of readings following the lecture, the critic considered Mr. Turner "equally unfortunate" in this category, and argued that His pronunciation [delivery] of sentences proved he did not know the difference between inflexion and emphasis ; and his elision of syllables in blank verse were enough to satisfy the dullest ear that he was entirely ignorant of the harmony in poetical feet, and the common principles of versification. 50 On still another occasion we find a critic familiar enough with elocutionary theory to indulge in an extensive criticism of both Rush’s Philosophy of the Human Voice and Porter’s Analysis of the Principles of Rhetorical Delivery . The critic’s ability to compare and contrast the work of these two men with that of Austin, Sheridan, and Steele suggests a rather extensive knowledge of the elocutionists and their 5° Nerw England Galaxy , November 10, 1820, p. 18.

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3k works .51 Montrose J. Moses goes so far as to imply that the critic of the period was so much under the influence of oratorical style that he wrote his theatrical reviews with an oratorical flavor. Referring to an example from the period, he says There is the tang of oratorical rhythm about all this, dominant over the critical understanding. The critic of the theatre becomes correct rather than illuminating, except in so far as he displays his own taste and shows what he is looking for. 52 Whether critically illuminating or not in Moses's terms, the critic is reflecting the taste of his age and suggesting the pervasive influences which led audiences to base their judgments of the actor's performance on principles of oratorical delivery. The statement that the acting of the period is likely to be viewed in the orator's terms rests primarily, however, on the evidence of the reviews themselves. That a common standard for judging these two arts did exist in the period is seen in numerous references to the stage as a "school of elocution and oratory." In July 1817, a critic, writing for the American Monthly Magazine, offered an apologia for the severity of his theatrical criticisms during the preceding season. He stated that his justification for such a course was to "excite a proper ambition among the performs rs." He continued: It is not our province to lecture upon elocution, — on the 1 contrary, we would gladly receive lessons on the art from the stage. But the art must be learnt before it can be taught. . . . While we do attend 5^ -North American Review, July, 1829, pp. 38-UO. 52Moses, Forrest, p, 28.

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35 the Theatre we will Insist at least that the language be spoken correctly, and those who persist in violations of orthoepy that we have pointed out, shall themselves be properly designated. 53 / "Cato," of the Mirror , goes even further and records an account (probably fictitious) of a conversation between "Mr. Frost" and "Mr. Liberal" concerning the "morality or Immorality" of the stage. Mr. Frost takes the position that the stage is the habitation of the devil, while Mr. Liberal argues that "the stage inspired our youth with a love for oratory, and taught them the art of suiting the word to the action; the action to the passion; the passion to the character; and the character to the design of nature's great author. "5k The critic goes on to say that Mr. Liberal admitted that not all actors have "the ability, education, character, manner" befitting their profession, but he adds that "we have many bright exceptions whose grace, accomplishments, learning, talents, and worth, have made them models of oratoxy; aid have established the stage the best school for the public speaker." Mr. Liberal believed, moreover, that if "men of science would favour the public with a periodical critique of the stage, the American theatre might become a great promoter of the fine arts, ethics, and oratory. . . ."55 Such an attitude toward the theatre persisted throughout the period under review in this study. In 1831, the Mirror's critic bemoaned the fact that "a world of acclamation is wasted on the worst parts" of an actor's performance. "As long as the lovers of drama," ^ American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 211. 5%ew York Mirror , January 21, 1826, p. 206 55lbid.

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36 he warns, "suffer themselves to be so deceived, the stage will continue to be a bad school of elocution, and it will be censure against a public speaker to say that his manner is ’theatrical. Five years later the same magazine argued that the drama should rank above all the "classick arts," as it did in the day of ancient Greece when "it was considered the arbiter of contested idiom or pronunciation, the school of genius, the scourge of vice, the guardian of moral truth — the instructive as well as amusing relaxation. Such statements imply that "theatrical oratory" was considered a mark of excellence. They also seem to indicate that the critic is concerned that the actor remain the model (as the elocutionist often suggested he should be) for the orator to follow, and set it as his task to see that he remained a "pure and undefiled" one. The period from 1815 to 181*0 appears to be one in which a single set of standards governing the pronunciation, vocal management, bodily expression, emotional portrayal, and conformation to the requirements of nature developed in the criticism of actors and orators. That such a situation should exist is not surprising in view of the tradition which had related the arts of acting and oratory for centuries, and in view of the fact that an "oratorical" or declamatory style of acting V was preserved in America until about 181*0. Moreover, such factors as the interest in correct language usage, the tendency to equate leadership ability with speaking ability, and the supply of teachers who had been $ 6 ibid ., October 15, 1831, p. 115 57lbid., August 27, 1836 , p. 70.

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37 actors or who held up the actor as a good model; served as an impetus in the establishment of a single set of criteria for the delivery of both actor and orator. In addition, the major aspects of the oral product which the elocutionist analyzed were such as to lend themselves to an adequate description of the kind of acting prevalent in this age* Finally, the critic's and actor's familiarity with elocutionary precepts, and the critic's desire to maintain the stage as the model for correctness in speech, support the assumption that by analysing theatrical criticism in terms of elocutionary principles we may be able to characterise more exactly the styles of acting current during the period.

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CHAPTER II STANDARDS OF PRONUNCIATION REQUIRED OF THE ACTOR ON THE AMERICAN STAGE "If Noah Webster had not been bom, we should have had to invent him." —Thomas Pyles The problem inherent in a study of acting styles and techniques is that of isolating the standards of excellence which were applied to the actor’ s product in a given period. In the case of the early nineteenth century, when the American theatrical critic thought it his duty to purge the stage of its impurities, improprieties, and imperfections,! one such standard involved the matter of the actor’s pronunciation. In his campaign to eliminate the grounds for prejudice against the stage, one critic declared: We have observed many inaccuracies, particularly in pronunciation, of which we have here, taken no note. We have not wished to appear hypercritical in the outset, but we shall be more strict, hereafter, in marking transgressions, especially against orthoepy. 2 As a result of the general desire of the age to "fix" and "refine" the language, American critics of the theatre became particularly conscious of the variations in pronunciation among actors* As "watchdogs of ^ American Monthly Magazine and Critical Review [ed. H. Biglow], May, 1817, p. 51. 2 Ibid . June, 1817, p. 138. 38

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39 society," critics objected to any actor's pronunciation which did not meet what they considered the standards of correct pronunciation. One reason given for demanding that the actor conform to such a standard was that many "fashionable people adopt the pronunciation of the stage. "3 Thi s statement supports Harder's conjecture that the pronunciation of actors influenced that of the audience. ^ What, then, were the standards of pronunciation which the actor was expected to achieve? In answering this question, we must keep in mind, first of all, that in this period the term "pronunciation" had a dual meaning. It could refer to the whole subject of the speaker's delivery, as in the title of John Mason's work. An Essay on Elocution, or Pronunciation , 5 or it could be used in its present-day sense of referring to the sounds and accents with which individual words are uttered. ^ It is with "orthoepy" as it relates to the sounds and accents of individual words that this chapter is concerned. Fittingly enough, one standard of pronunciation widely followed during the period was that put forth by the actor-elocutionist Thomas Sheridan, in his Complete Dictionary of the English Language . Sheridan's standard of pronunciation was that of the Queen Anne period— a period in which, he believed, the pronunciation of the English 3 American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], June, 1818, p. 138. U Jayne Crane Harder, "The Influence of the Teaching of Elocution on Modem English Pronunciation" (doctoral dissertation. University of Florida, 1956), p. 21. £john Mason, An Essay on Elocution, or Pronunciation (London, 17U8) . ^Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution , pp. UO-Ul.

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ho language reached perfection,? whatever he meant by that. It mi^tit be noted at this point that his enthusiasm for these standards was not unique; indeed, it was echoed by Noah Webster.® Sheridan maintained that, although audiences would expect a good speaker to avoid stammering, lisping, mumbling, the use of too high or too low a pitch, and discordant tones and cadences, they would also judge him by his pronunciation which, he said, is "caught" from one's associates and is, therefore, an indication of the company the speaker keeps. 9 To Sheridan, the process of becoming a good speaker consisted of replacing a bad habit with a good one. 10 In practice, this meant that a speaker who had a defect in his pronunciation needed, first, to become aware of that defect, and establish its precise nature. Then, it was essential to have a method for correcting the fault and to apply it. 11 Insofar as the actor of the period is concerned, it was the theatrical critic who took it upon himself to point out the "defect" in the actor’s pronunciation and suggest a remedy for it, one often based on the Sheridan standard of correctness. John Walker, author of A Critical Pronouncing Dictionary, Elements of Elocution , and other works, was perhaps even more influential 7Thomas Sheridan, A Complete Dictionary of the English Language (2nd ed.; London, 1789), Preface . ®Noah Webster, Dissertations on the English Language (Boston, 1789), p. 30. ^Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution , p. 51. 10 Ibid., pp. 22-23. n Ibid., p. 51

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in setting standards of pronunciation to which the actor was expected to conform. ^ In some quarters, at least. Walker’s views on the subject were held in high regard. Literary critics found Walker’s recommendations worthy of endorsement. For example, the critic on the American Quarterly Review credited Walker with having a superior knowledge of correet pronunciation since he was conversant with the best of London’s society. ^ It is entirely possible, however, that Walker's social environment was not the exclusive source of his views on pronunciation. Like Sheridan, Walker had been an actor and some of his recommendations may well have been rooted in stage practice. The critic of the American Quarterly thought so, at any rate, since he noted that some persons had misunderstood Walker who "meant to give the precise, exact pronunciation of public speakers in Parliament, in the Pulpit, and on the Stage, but not the more careless and slovenly utterance of familiar conversation. Walker not only made an effort to standarize pronunciation, but developed a system of notation to guide the speaker to correct pronunciation.^ His method was to divide words into syllables, indicate the accented syllable, and mark the sounds of the vowels. 16 In carrying 12 John Walker, A Critical Pronouncing Dictiona ry (Edinburg, 1830)j Elements of Elocution (Boston, l6l0 ) , 13 American Quarterly Review , September, 1818, pp. 202-203. %bid., p. 207. ^Haberman, in History of Speech Education , p. 111. ^Afalker, Critical Pronouncing Dictionary » p. 9.

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k2 out his purpose. Walker began by "settling the true pronunciations of those letters, syllables, and words, which are the most liable to be mistaken by the generality of readers and speakers. Because of the extent to which Idle early nineteenth century theatrical criticism reflects Walker’s standards, it is of distinct value to examine the general areas and conditions included in his writings on the subject. In his estimation, a good speaker or reader would not be guilty of "too slightly sounding the accented vowels," but would tend to prolong the three sounds of a [e 3, [CL] t [O], and of o [ O }j nor would he permit unaccented vowels to have too slight an accent, as in the case of regular pronounced as Vf£^3-^ J, event as " uwent " [3 V£^], or sensible as " sensubble " [ Such words he maintained, must preserve the u and i from "indistinctness and obscurity," and be pronounced [ l / r £^jular' ], [( and [ J S£ttS 1 kj J. 1 ® Walker also recommended the "liquid sound of k, c, or £ hard" before the vowels a or i, so that kind is pronounced "as if written ke-ind ."-^ Speakers who chose to follow Walker were also advised to employ the "liquid sounds" of t, d, s, and soft c [/] in the endin s -tion, si on , -cion , while d was to become [ oljj ] in such words as verdure , and educate . In odious , Indian , and similar words, the i was to have an "e sound," making them 3 and [ ‘jndj 1*3^3. 20 Walker, in his attempt to l?Walker, Rhetorical Grammar , p. 17. l^bid., pp. 18-19. 19lbid., pp. 22-23. 20 Ibid., pp. 2U-25

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preserve the elegance and beauty of the language, also insisted on the release of final plosives and the pronouncing of s distinctly after st,21 When the theatrical critic’s treatment of the actor's pronunciation is examined with reference to these rules, it becomes apparent that Walker's influence was indeed widespread. The critic frequently turned to the Walker recommendations in order to bolster his indictment against an actor who was guilty of what he considered a mispronunciation. One critic, paraphrasing a Walker principle, reminded the actors that j* when u is under the accent, the d or t never coalesces with itj or we should hear tshutor, ensure, and jupe for tutor , endure , and dupe . 11 22 jf In like manner, a Boston correspondent considered such errors in pronunciation as j uty for duty , juration for duration , and machure for mature as "vicious” as did Walker. 23 The editor of the Boston Galaxy further revealed the critic's reliance on Walker's Dictionary when answering an article in the Centinel signed "A. B." In this controversy involving the word yeast , the editor cited as his authority Walker's Dictionary, "the only one we have at hand," and quoted Walker's note on this vordi | Dr. Johnson has very properly spelled this word yest , . . . I and not yeast , as we sometimes see itj . . . Mr. Sheridan . . . [writes] it as Dr. Johnson has done, and pronounces it as I have donej and I think not only more agreeable to analogy, which forbids us to pronounce e long, when followed by st in the same syllable, (see Lest ,)~*but, if I mistake not, more consonant to polite usage. The vulgar do not only pronounce the diphthong long, but sink the v, and reduce the word to east. 24 J 2 1lbid ., pp. 30-31. ^ American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], June, 1817, p. 138. 23 New England Galaxy, October 26, 1821, p. 218. %bid., October 2h, 1817, n.p.

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There are many other examples of Walker’s strictures being echoed by the critics. It is interesting to observe the several applications of Walker's recommendation that pronouns in an unstressed position in the sentence be pronounced with an "e sound" for the £, except in the case of thy , a form no longer current in contemporary speech, should always have its full value and rhyme with high . 2 ^ "Crito" of the New York Commercial Advertiser praised Cooper for restoring "the vowel jr to its proper sound in defiance of theatric affectation of softening it invariably to e, thereby injuring essentially the pronunciation and emasculating the language. " 2 ^ Payne, in his Thespian Mirror, likewise commended Fennell for avoiding "the ridiculous, miserable affectation, of changing the sound of jr into that of o in thy , my and some few others. . . ." 2 ? The critic of the American Monthly found a violation of Walker's rule for pronouncing a pronoun in a stressed position in the speech of Carpender, whom he took to task for "slurring mjr, where it should have been emphatic, in which case it should rhyme with eje." 2 ® One critic, duplicating Walker's pronouncement regarding the fault of substituting w for v, intimated that the wrath of the god could not be as soft as one actor made him out to be when he proclaimed "the wengeful will of angry Jove." 2 ^ 25walker, Rhetorical Granroar, PP. 37-39} 12 4£. 26Quoted in Odell, Annals, II, 75* 27lbid., p. 252. 28 American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 208. 29New Yoric Mirror , October 1823, p* 100.

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bS While critics did not always cite Walker as his authority, there are instances in which it is obvious that they were referring to this lexicographer. Cooper, for instance, was indicted for accenting the word orison on the second syllable in the "very passage too which is quoted by lexicographers to prove that the accent should be on the first syllable — Nymph, in thy orisons /Be all my sins remembered. "30 The lexicographer referred to in this case could be no other than Walker whose note on this word employs the same quotation and reads in parti "Dr. Johnson tells us this word is variously accented; that Shakespeare has the accent both on the first and second syllables. . • ."31 The critic is probably correct in assuming that, in this example, Walker meant the word to be stressed on the first syllable, since he follows it with another quotation from Shakespeare which he employs to show the accent on the second syllable. While the preceding instances indicate a direct application of, and insistence on. Walker's standards, there are other cases in which the critic reflects the influence of Walker. It would appear, for example, that the critic on the American Monthly , who kept a list of the actor's "improprieties" in pronunciation and, when space permitted, published these "defects" along with their "remedies," probably had a copy of Walker's Dictionary or his Rhetorical Grammar as his reference. On one occasion, the list of faults contained such items as the following, to use the critic's method of indicating pronunciation! "bean 3 %ew England Galaxy , November 21*, 1820, p. 26. 31see Walker, Critical Pronouncing Dictionary , s.v. Orison .

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rather than bin for been , po-sess rather than pozzess for possess , rarther and arfter for rather and after , parents for parents , and lep for leap . "32 The critic also objected to Mr. Hilson's "improper” way of pronouncing drove and bosom , and to the "inaccuracy" of Miss Johnson's pronunciation of obli ge , any , and many . Other actors, he observed, were guilty of accenting indecorous on the antepenult, or clipping pecuniary to pecunary , and calling any , " anny ," instead of enny .33 The following month this critic's list of "improprieties" held such items as the "short i" of Mr. Pritchard, instead of the "long i" in ensign; the ware instead of wer for were ; the "short i" in gripe [a handshake], which must always have the "1 long"; and the "short i" in wind , which requires the "long i" in poetry. He also objected to Mr. Carpender's giving the o in combat the sound of the o in not , "whereas it should be pronounced like the o in brothers. "3k The other violations of orthoepy included in this account were equally in accord with the standards of Walker. Items such as the critic's concern over Mr. Simpson's use of jubious for dubious , or the errors of Mr. Pritchard in pronouncing " has , rather , lance , &c [sic] with the a heard in father , and not . . . with the a heard in hat . . . ," bear a marked resemblance to Walker's recommendations. In this latter instance, the critic noted 32 American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], June, 1817, p. 138. It is interesting to note that the respellings rarther and arfter represent [Wife"] and [ 'a.-fi&'l and that the critic is probably following Walker who decried the use of [CL] for [31] in these words; see his Critical Pronouncing Dictionary , s.v. Rather , After . 33 American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], June, 1817, p. 138. 3 albid ., July, 1817, p. 208.

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hi that "this, though not in the same degree, is the fault of every performer on these boards. "3^ So far as this "broad a" is concerned, it must be remembered that the actors being criticized were almost all of British origin, and although Walker, Sheridan and others had considered the change of [aE] to [CL] in words such as lance , rather, staff, bath , and similar ones "vulgar," it had prevailed in England. 36 A further clue to the extent which theatrical concern over pronunciation focused on areas or matters treated by Walker is provided by the critic who took Mr. Thome to task for using the ending [-1H] instead of [-IQ ], an articulatory "fault" which Walker also treated in his Rhetorical Grammar . While Thorne was a member of the company appearing at the Bowery Theatre, the critic called attention to the tendency of actors of both the New York theatres to "suffer divers of their organs to lie idle even in the height of declamation. We hear bein , instead of being — given instead of giving — shillin , comin . . . i* 37 We might notice in relation to this point that, while Walker allowed the -ing ending to rhyme with in in verbs ending with ing , as bring , ring , he would not permit it in such words as the critic cited. Not only is there evidence that Walker's rules for acceptable pronunciation were favored in theatrical quarters, there is also reason 3 5lbid . It should be noted that, if Mr, Pritchard did actually use the pronunciation [ hen-] for has, he was affecting it for reasons of his own and not because he followed any normal speech pattern of either America or England. 36Amerlca, on the other hand, except for the coastal areas of New England and the South, had retained the older eighteenth-century [eg. 3 in these words. On this point, see Pyles, Words and Ways, pp. 6566 , 37New York Mirror, October 8, 1831, p. 111*

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U8 to suspect that they were sometimes applied over-zealously. The actor in some cases probably followed the prescriptions of Walker too closely, and developed patterns of pronunciation that became faulty by virtue of carrying the elocutionist's precepts to ridiculous extremes. As a case in point, we might observe the treatment of the r for which Walker had allowed two pronunciations, one of which was a "rough r" formed by "jarring the tip of the tongue against the roof of the mouth, near the fore-teeth," and which was used at the beginning of words. 3® This may well have been carried to excess on occasions since we find critical reference to "an unpleasant habit of dwelling on the letter r . . so that " right becomes erright , strange star range . . . ."39 Additional attention is focused on this possibility by the fact that Murdoch, when dealing with what he called the "vibrant r," recognized the fact that some actors continued the vibration too long or failed to coalesce it with other sounds, producing such pronunciations as "e-r-r and r-oll."^® An examination of the standards of excellence against which the actor's habits of pronunciation were measured would seem to indicate that they were essentially those prescribed by Sheridan and Walker. Indeed, these orthoepists served as the major influences in pronunciation until the American dictionaries of Worcester and Webster became popular, and even these latter works reflected the influence of the two elocutionist-lexicographers 38&alker, Rhetorical Grammar , pp. 28-30. 3 9iunerican Monthly Magazine [Biglow], June, l8l?, p. U+l. UOMurdoch, Analytic Elocution , p. 72. ^Harder, "Influence of the Teaching of Elocution," p. 83.

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k9 The preceding parallels between theatrical criticism and the rules prescribed in Walker’s writings make it clear that, of these influences. Walker's was the more dominant. The elocutionists who followed in the wake of these two figures had few specific recommendations of their own to make concerning pronunciation. Nevertheless, byendorsing the standards prescribed by the dictionaries, they did add to an awareness of the importance of pronunciation, thus making it a critical measure of an actor’s skill. For example, although William Enfield, * whose work was popular in the United States, contented himself with general observations on "propriety and elegance" in pronunciation, the few specific recommendations he did make served to reinforce those of Walker. We find in them suggestions such as: "pronounce h where it ought to be usedj do not insert it where it ought not to bej and do not confound w and v."^2 Ltndley Hurray, whose English Reader became a popular American text, further examplifies this tendency. Murray had only a few remarks to make on the necessity for "propriety of pronunciation," but, beyond that, he endorsed the dictionaries of Sheridan and Walker as a means of "ascertaining the true and best pronunciation. "^3 In general, we may agree with Harder that the role of the American elocutionist of this period in regard to pronunciation was to give endorsement to the authoritarian claim by the lexicographer of his ri$it to legislate in matters pertaining to the question of acceptable pronunciation.^ ^William Enfield, The Speaker (Philadelphia, 1817), p. 9. ^Lindley Murray, The English Reader (Albany, 1821;), pp. 7-8. Ul«arder, "The Influence of the Teaching of Elocution," p. 85.

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5o While the American elocutionist may have added little that was new to the subject of pronunciation, he did have his part to play in helping to make the period conscious— perhaps even self-conscious— of the way in which it pronounced many words. Granted, few of the American elocutionists included orthoepy in their elocutionary systems, they nevertheless can be credited with having influenced the actor's or public speaker's delivery, as far as pronunciation is concerned. Although their specific recommendations on the subject may have served only to strengthen the dictionary-maker's influence,^ they did provide exercises by which the pronunciation-conscious reader or speaker might improve his articulation of certain sounds, either alone or in combination with other sounds. Just as Sheridan and Walker had sought in their dictionaries to "fix" the standard of pronunciation which everyone should adopt, the American elocutionists who followed them desired, through the materials and methods they provided, to show "everyone how to use the standard language most effectively."^ It follows, then, that in a consideration of the role which pronunciation played in early nineteenth-century acting technique, it is necessary to admit a second factor i the existence of a body of organized material designed to assist the speaker in achieving the standards set by the lexicographers. The critic insisting on the principle of a "fixed" pronunciation could stand firm in the knowledge that he was harder, "The Influence of the Teaching of Elocution," pp. 8U-85. forbid., p. 8^.

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5 1 supported by elocutionary precepts of pronunciation generally accepted as reliable guides. ^7 The pioneer work of the American elocutionist, Ebenezer Porter, whose Rhetorical Reader and Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery were probably the most widely-used textbooks during the early years of the century,^ 4 ® exemplify the sort of material cm pronunciation which was influential in the period. Porter’s Rhetorical Delivery not only provided a good synthesis of the major principles of the English elocutionists on the subject of pronunciation, primarily those of Sheridan and Walker, but also was concerned with the difficulty of pronouncing consonant sounds, expecially consecutive ones of similar sound, the influence of accent on vowel sounds, and the tendency of speakers to slide over unaccented vowel sounds. James Rush, another influential American elocutionist, gave a great deal of attention to an analysis of the sounds of the language. His Philosophy of the Human Voice represents an attempt to make elocution a scientific study, one which led him to analyze the silkiest elements of language, the vowel and consonant sounds. In time , his followers were able to simplify his hi$ily complex findings and to make his principles "teachable," thus putting them within reach of public speakers, readers, and actors. The first of these teachers to employ the Rush system of elocution was U7 ibid ., p. 8U. ^Ebenezer Porter, Analysis of the Principles of Rhetorical Delivery (Andover, 1827)} The Iheto'rical Reader (l5th ed.s Andover, 1$3£>) . Concerning the popularity of these books , see Robb, in History of Speech Education , p. 179. ^Porter, Rhetorical Delivery , pp. 25-32.

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52 Jonathan Barber in his Grammar of Elocution .-^ While Barber relied on the Rush terminology, he developed his own methods , and it is said he required his students to practice individual vowel and consonant sounds for long periods. ^ It was thus that articulation and enunciation, elements vital to the process of satisfying standards of pronunciation, came to have such prominence in the American elocutionary works. p 2 Hie American elocutionist, therefore, while he may not have had original prescriptions of his own to make for standardizing the pronunciation, did give impetus to the authoritarian viewpoint which sought to "fix” the standard of pronunciation for everyone to follow. The body of nineteenth-century theatrical criticism would indicate that the theatrical critic followed the lead of these elocutionists and likewise endorsed the lexicographer's claim to supremacy as an arbiter in matters of pronunciation* The writers recommended to the actor that he have recourse to a dictionary to correct his faults. One actress, for instance, who was playing in Cinderella and invariably omitting the s from the plural of steed , was advised to use her wand to conjure up a dictionary occasionally.^ Another critic grew tired of calling the actors' attention to their errors in pronunciation since they, seemingly, did not profit by his advice. He went on to remark that, so far as correct pronunciation was concerned, there was an "acknowledged standard" to which all ^^Barber, Grammar of Elocution ; on this point, see Robb, in History of Speech Education , pp. 1&U-185* 5llbid., p. 187. 52narder, "The Influence of the Teaching of Elocution," p. 77. 53New York Mirror , August 27, 1831, p. 63 .

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53 could refer, and added there was no "calculating what improvement, in other respects, might result from a greater familiarity with their dictionaries."^ A Polyanthos critic declared that actors who had "never committed the sin of looking into a dictionary" could not be expected to give vowels and diphthongs their proper sound. 55 Such comments as these, rather frequent in the theatrical criticisms of the period, demonstrate the degree to which the critic followed the elocutionist in looking to the dictionaries for authority in pronunciation. Thus far we have noted the standards of pronunciation prevailing between l8lf> and l81|0, the critic's tendency to rely on dictionary prescriptions when evaluating an actorÂ’s performance, and the extent to which the existing systems of elocution provided exercises and methods for improving pronunciation. It becomes necessary, then, to examine the theatrical importance of this aspect of vocal delivery, and the degree of emphasis assigned to it by those making judgments on the performers of the day. The elocutionist, both English and American, wielded great influence in making the question of acceptable pronunciation a major one in the period under review. The theatrical critic also gave a prominent place to this problem in his criticism of the actor's performance. The degree of importance which the critic attached to this phase of the performance may be seen, first of all, in the fact that, not only did he direct his censure to the ordinary member of the stock company, but doled out his strictures to the major stars as well. The American , for ^ American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 208. ^ Polyanthos , December, 1812, pp. 162-163.

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su instance, observed that "errors of emphasis and pronunciation were common’ 1 in the speech of the elder Booth. The Boston critic was far more specific and suggested that Booth's "pronunciation of the words first, worst , curse, &e [sic] would not be considered classical or polite in an audience of scholars* He drops the 'liquid r' and pronounces them fust, wust, cuss . ”57 Vigilance regarding matters of pronunciation was not relaxed, even in the case of an actor as firmly established as Cooper. He, too, came in for criticism, when, in violation of Walker's rule, "He made h silent when it should have been aspirated. "5® The importance which the critic gave to pronunciation is further seen in his insistence that his recommendations be followed* When they were not, he repeated them. A case in point is that of the critic who, in reviewing Cinderella a month after his first report of it, saw fit to berate Mrs. Barnes for continuing to omit the s from the plural of steed, in spite of his earlier admonition . ^ Another critic, who had objected to an actor's sounding the last syllable of portentous as if it were portentiou3 , could not look upon the error as "venial" when the actor persisted in this mispronunciation.^ 0 The Galaxy, in 1820, printed a letter from "A Subscriber" who complained of the discontinuance ^ American , October 16, 1821, quoted in Odell, Annals , III, 12. 5 7 New England Galaxy . May 17, 1822, n.p. 5 ®American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 211. 59New York Mirror, September 10, 1831, p. 78 . 60lbid.

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5 $ of the theatrical criticism in the past few issues. The editor replied that theatrical criticism had become "unprofitable" to actor and public alike* presumably because the editor's recommendations for the actor's improvement, like those of the New York critic, had gone unheeded. Instead, the critic advised theatre managers to "employ a schoolmaster to teach the rudiments of reading, and particularly the English pronunciation of the alphabet" to their actors.^ Theatrical critics of the period generally agreed that the stage outfit to be a model for correct pronunciation. One critic, for instance, bemoaned the fact that the stage could no longer be looked to for "the standard of English pronunciation," because the actors had grown so lax in this regard. ^ Another critic thought, however, that the stage should be preserved as "an authority on questions of orthoepy," and advised the actors to avoid, at all costs, such errors as rhyming "Eurydice" with mice , and making "Terpsichore" a three -syllable word.^ Further testimony as to the importance which the critic placed on the necessity of maintaining the stage as a correct influence on pronunciation is to be seen in the American Monthly critic's admonition that the actors should have "correct apprehensions of the dignity of their profession," in making the stage "a school of rhetoric, at least it relates to all its exteriors," in order that "it should exhibit the refinement of polished manners, and should be a model of pronunciation."^ 6 lNew England Galaxy , February U, 1820, p. 65. 6 2pc>iyanthos , December, 1812, pp. 162-163. 63New York Mirror , August 27, 1831, p, 63 . ^American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], August, 1817, pp. 301-302.

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56 In general, we might say that the elocutionist was interested in the subject of pronunciation and laid down certain rules and recommendations which good speakers, readers, and actors were to follow. The theatrical critic appears to have adopted these recommendations and rated the actor in accordance with them. The early orthoepists, Sheridan and Walker, set the fashion with their prescriptions based, to some extent, on stage practice. Whether the theatrical critic had studied the elocutionist's texts or not, the fact remains that he did have recourse to their authority, and to the authorities they recommended, for the "correct pronunciations" by which he judged the actor's speech. The elocutionist of the period underscored the authority of the lexicographer in prescribing acceptable pronunciations, and provided specific instruction regarding methods of improving pronunciation and meeting these standards. The theatrical critic, consciously or not, followed in his path, insisting that it was important for the actor to pronounce words "correctly," demanding the stage provide good models for pronunciation, and establishing a set of rigid standards for the actor's pronunciation, if he were to be rated as an actor par excellence .

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CHAPTER III CRITICISM OF THE AMERICAN ACTOR’S VOCAL TECHNIQUE "The blind might have seen him in his voice. ..." —Aaron Hill Of all the factors which the elocutionist observed and recorded in his analyses of the actor's and orator's delivery, the one that impressed him most and which formed the major emphasis in his teaching, was that of voice. The theatrical critic was equally influenced by the importance of the vocal element in the actor's performance 5 consequently he, too, devoted much attention to the actor's vocal technique. That emphasis may have been fortunate in view of the object of this study, for it is perhaps on his vocal management that the actor's style, in the final analysis, must rest. We can probably say that, because he maintained this elocutionary stress on the vocal element in his criticism, the theatrical critic of the first part of the nineteenth century would have agreed with James E. Murdoch that "excellence in dramatic art was mainly attributable to the actor's mastery over his voice. . . ."^ The term "elocution" was at times used by the elocutionist and critic to designate the vocal element alone, as it was by John Mason, who defined elocution as the "right management of the voice in reading ^-Murdoch, The Stage , p. 80.

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58 and speaking." 2 The importance attached to this factor is reflected by Sheridan who believed the power of the living voice to be greater than that of the written word. 3 Similarly, Austin prefaced his remarks on voice with the words, "all that language and tones can effect to influence the understanding and to win the affections depends upon the power of the voice addressed to the ear."^ The critics writing for the periodicals of the time gave considerable attention to this factor, as is attested by a statement from the North American Review which pointed out that "the voice is the organ of the soul," and "articulate speech the grand instrument of the orator. "5 Furthermore, this writer was of the opinion that training in voice, rather than gesture, should occupy the central position in courses of rhetorical instruction. Critics of the periodÂ’s theatrical product demonstrate a similar tendency to assign a major degree of importance to vocal management. Indeed, their writings indicate it became a prime factor in establishing the actor's excellence. For instance, while Wallack's portrayal of Rolla, Octavian, and Hamlet during his 1818 Boston engagement was generally given the stamp of approval, the critic had a reservation to make in regard to this actor's use of his voice. "His greatest fault," the critic observed, "is a want of rhetorical accuracy 2Mason, An Essay on Elocution , p. 5* 3Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution, p. xiii. ^Austin, Chironomia , p, 29. 5North American Review , July, 1829, p. i*0.

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59 and refinement in elocution — a fault which • • . cannot be counterbalanced by the finest acting in the world. The critic is here obviously equating elocution with the spoken aspect of the actor’s performance, and "acting" with its physical aspects* He asserts that the actor must appeal to the "ear" and the understanding of the audience, as well as to the "eye . "7 Such a statement might well have been paraphrased from Sheridan who distinguished between the language of tones addressed to the ear, and the language of gesture addressed to the eye. 8 The critic might also have been echoing Porter's statement that the "tender emotions" were excited more strongly by tones of voice addressed to the "ear" than by physical signs addressed to the "eye. "9 A Philadelphia critic reflected a similar idea in his comment that Kean's consciousness of his vocal insufficiency led him to compensate with violent physical efforts and caused him to play inordinately "to the eye."-*0 For both elocutionist and theatrical critic, then, it would appear the manner in which the performer used his voice was of prime importance. The matter was perhaps best summed up by one critic who denounced those who found physical strength to be Forrest's only merit. Such a notion, he thought, was preposterous, for "an actor could no more play a 6New England Galaxy , December 11, 1818, n.p. 7lbid. ^Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution , p. lUli* ^Porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery , p. 3lu lOprom a series of reviews on Edmund Kean in the Philadelphia National Gazette, February 6, 7, 8, 1821, reprinted in Cole and Chinpy, Actors on Acting , p. 302.

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60 spirrit-stirring [sic 3 part without a power of voice and a strength of nerve than a sculptor could make an Apollo or a Venus from the rouph marble without a chisel. When theatrical criticisms of acting in the period from l8l£ to 18U0 are analyzed, certain characteristics of voice are found to be highly prized, and certain attributes of vocal expression are demanded of the performer if he is to receive the critic's commendation. First of all, the critic insisted that the actor possess a voice which would enable him to be heard throughout an auditorium, and that he use his voice so as to be understood easily. Such a requirement would appear to be so obvious that it would hardly need to be mentioned, yet both critic and elocutionist set this standard as the first to be met. One critic remarked that "Mr. Duff would be more distinctly heard if he would accustom himself to speaking a little more in the hi^ier tones of his voice," since "many of his periods are delivered in so low a tone as to be scarcely audible. The student of acting technique may be left in some doubt as to whether this critic is recommending that the actor raise his pitch or increase his volume. Porter cleared the point up in his statement that "it is a common thing for speakers to confound high with loud , and low with soft . Hence we often hear it remarked of one that he speaks in a low voice, when the meaning is, a feeble one. * • With such a point of reference, we may safely conclude that Duff needed greater volume in his speaking, not a higher pitch. HAmerican Monthly Magazine, July 1, I83U, p. 360. 12 New England Galaxy , February 27, 1818, n.p. 13 Porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Deliveiy , p. 106.

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61 Other examples from the theatrical criticism of the period tend to support the conclusion that the elocutionist's requirements for distinctness and audibility were part of the critic's yardstick for measuring an actor's ability. pFhe American Monthly critic, for example, had assured Mrs. Barnes that "to be well heard, the quantity of sound is much less important than distinctness of articulation. . , ."Hi "Mossop," a Bostonian correspondent of the Galaxy, complained he could not always hear and understand Kean."-^ Another correspondent suggested that Kilner seemed "to disdain all avenues to the senses, save the auricular nerves."^ In New York, the Mirror critic, who had been chiding an actor for "muttering,” exclaimed in one review, "Mr. Simpson permitted the audience to hear xdiat he had to say in the character of Charles Franklin — Wonderfull --Wonderful 1 1 — Wonderful J In addition to their insistence that the performer make himself heard and understood, the elocutionist and critic added the further requirement that he do so with "grace" and "ease." Sheridan, for instance, noted a common fault of speakers was that of straining their voices to make themselves heard, a practice encouraged, perhaps, by the poor acoustics of the available auditoriums. Likewise, the eight rules to which William Enfield reduced the art of elocution were designed to help l UAmerican Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 200. X^ New England Galaxy , February 23, 1821, p. ?8, l ^Ibid . , November 18, 1821, p. 230. l?New York Mirror, December 11, 1821*, p. 100, l8sheridan. Lectures on Elocution, pp. 116-121

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62 the speaker or reader to acquire a "just and graceful elocution.” 1 ? Walker’s writings on the subject, which became the fashion in American elocution, typify this point of emphasis. He not only subjected the element of voice to minute analysis, 2 ^* but also defined the art of reading as "that system of rules, which teaches use to pronounce [speak] with justness, energy, variety, and ease.” 21 Nineteenth-century American theatrical criticism represents an application of the elocutionist's teachings on the subject of "grace" and "ease" in voice production. One critic, who had assured Mrs. Barnes that her voice was "universally offensive," went on to point out that "she must have acquired this disagreeable voice under an impression that in her natural tones she could not be sufficiently energetic and audible." 22 The Philadelphia critic, who signed his reviews with the name "Betterton," and whose criticism Hillebrand cited as the best description of Kean's acting method to be found anywhere, noted that "the greatest physical blemish to be signalized in this tragedian, is the imperfection of his voice. This is universally admitted to be harsh and broken^ while sweetness is, by some, ascribed to its lower tones. " 2 3 infield. The Speaker , p. 5. 2%arren Guthrie, "The Elocution Movement in England," Speech Monographs [SM], XVIII (March, 1#1), 27. 21 Walker, Rhetorical Grammar , p. £l. 2 2 American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 20*>. 2 3 From the Philadelphia National Gazette , in Cole and 0hinoy, Actors on Acting , p. 302.

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63 A Boston critic was less kind* He characterized Kean’s manner of speaking as "the barking style, " 2 k and scans years later, spoke of the "croakings of Kean." 2 ^ On the other hand, Clapp, another Boston critic, thought Kean’s voice "in the undertones boomed with melancholy music . n2 6 But it was perhaps the Philadelphia critic who gave the most unbiased opinion of Kean’s vocal product, one reflective of the tendency to use "ease" of production as a proof of vocal skill. He noted: ... it [Kean's voice] is susceptible of praise in the enunciation of passages of solemn, emphatic tenor, which he does not conceive to require vehemence of tone and velocity of utterance. His cadences are distinct and agreeable in measured and deliberate speech; if his voice is rarely musical, it is not always grating. . . .27 Another critic registered delight when an actress left off the falsetto quality of voice she had been using and spoke in her natural tones. 2 ® From comments such as these, which abound in the theatrical criticism of the time, it would appear that the critic and the elocutionist were in agreement regarding the first two general requirements for vocal excellence. They asked that the performer's voice be easily heard and understood, and that it have a pleasing quality. Beyond these two general requirements for the actor's vocal product, the elocutionary theory provided critics with even more specific 2l iMew England Galaxy , November 30, 1820, n.p. 25 >Ibid . , October U*, 1825, n.p. 26w. W. Clapp, Jr., A Record of the Boston Stage (Boston, 1853), p. 178. 27From the Philadelphia National Gazette , in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting , p. 301. 2 8/imerlcan Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 206.

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6k attributes on which to base their judgment of an actor's excellence or the lack of it. Actors of the day were expected to possess voices of great compass . In the elocutionary theory of the time, "compass” referred to that range of pitch above and below the governing or natural key of the speaker's voice and considered as essential to meet the demands of a "spirited and diversified delivery." 2 ? This mi^it well account for the fact that even though a New York critic admired the acting of a Mr. Green, he did not admire the actor's voice which, "deficient in harmonious intonation and extent, refuses to enforce the conceptions of his imagination. "3° A more specific reference to the critic 's interest in this vocal capacity can be found in a review devoted to Conway's first appearance in New York. One critic stated the major reason for his admiration of this actor was that his voice was of "great compass. "31 In considering this point of emphasis, there appear to be reasons why "compass" of voice became a major concern of both critic and elocutionist. The performer needed wide vocal range to accomplish the transitions which constituted the "startling effects" beloved by audiences of the day. Porter had defined "transition" as a sudden change of voice. 3 2 We take Porter's work as a good point of reference, since they were not only the most popular of the elocutionary texts, but also represented an excellent synthesis of the works of 2 ?Porter, Rhetorical Reader , pp. 56-57. 3 American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], November, 1817, p. 61*. 3lNew York Mirror , Jarnaiy 31, 182^, p. 210. 32porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery , p. 120.

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65 Sheridan, Austin, Walker, and others, especially as regards the element of voice. While transitions could be accomplished by a change in pitch, they were not confined to such changes. Porter conceived of transition as embodying all that was concerned with vocal modifications; that is, the change might be accomplished not only by transitions from high to low pitch, but also from high and loud to low and loud , or from a fast to a slow rate of utterance, or even from utterance to pause, or from other combinations of vocal phenomena. 33 A critic was probably noting a '’transition” when he described Forrest’s "burst of frenzy on the violator of his kinswoman's honour” as "tremendous." In his enthusiasm over Forrest's skill in employing this abrupt vocal change, he continued, . .we have never, by any actor, heard that, or a similar passage, uttered with such appalling force and beauty. "3U ^rT another critic's estimation, Kean suffered by comparison with Cooke, since the latter possessed: Great strength and variety of voice, whose notes so opposite in their character and yet so full of meaning, the transitions from one to the other often produces the most electrical effect upon the audience. Expressions of rage bursting forth in the fierce accents of his sharp, nasal tones made the auditor start; and when followed by a deep under-breath of menance, or some sentiment of fearful irony or sarcasm accompanied by the sardonic leer of a fiend, it was sufficient to cause a painful ] shuddering in all who heard it. 35 ^ _[ This critic went on to say that these transitions had a more powerful effect with Cooke, because he employed them less frequently than did Kean. 33lbid., pp. 121-122. 3l*New York Mirror, December 8, 1827, p. 171. 35lbid., July 8, 1826, p. 399

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66 Hie theatrical criticism of this period abounds in references to transitions such as these, and to the "electrifying" effects they had on the audience . Closely related to compass and transition was the vocal aspect of Modulation, a term which generally meant "variety in managing the voice. "3^ The actor who possessed good modulation would never be guilty of monotony, "a dull repetition of sound on the same pitch," or of mechanical variety, "unskillful use of the greatest number of notes to produce a variety by frequent and arbitrary change of stress. "37 The basic constitusnts of modulation were those of inflection and cadence. The former had to do with the upward or downward "turn" of the voice on a single syllable, 3^ while cadence referred generally to the melody patterns employed at the ends of phrases or sentences. 39 Many instances might be noted of the critic's references to the question of the actor's modulation. When Cooper visited Boston in 1818, he was praised for "a voice of great compass, of most melodious silver tone, and susceptible of the greatest variety of modulations."^ 0 This critic goes on to say that Cooper's "critical knowledge of the inflexions of voice, and his judicious application of them, will always render him a favourite. . . At the end of Cooper's engagement, the critic 36porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, p. 93 • 37Porter, Rhetorical Reader , p. ii8. 38porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery , pp* U2-lilu 39Enfield, The Speaker, pp, 12 13 , U ONew England Galaxy, December U, 1818, n.p, U llbid .

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67 commented that "his voice, capable of almost every variety of modulation, never disappoints by running into an imperfect cadence."** *2 Another critic was happy to notice Mrs. Whitlock’s "improvement in the modulation of her voice. "^3 still another called attention to the fact "Mr. Woodhull stormed and swore in a more modulated tone of voice than is his wont when a full house witnesses his misdeeds."**** The critic who chided Simpson for "muttering" also had occasion to write that his intonations were "so peculiar to himself" that he "could not trace his meaning through the ups and downs of his speech."**^ A Mr. De Camp was taken to task for introducing "too many artificial cadences in his voice to be pleasing to an American ear."**^ In turn, Mr. Caldwell met disapproval because of a "want of command over the inflexions of his voice,— which is dissonant and unmusical. . . ."**7 The problem of dealing with modulation illustrates one of the difficulties inherent in any attempt to analyze such a complex aspect of delivery as that of vocal technique. The voice is, after all, an entity, operating as a unit. When the elements Involved in its use are isolated for study and criticism, they must be selected on an arbitrary basis. It must be realized that no one of the elements of voice ever appears alone in reality, but always in relationship to other aspects of voice ** 2 Ibid., December 15, 1820, p. 39. U 3American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], October, 1817, p. 1*60. ****New York Mirror , January 23, 1830, p. 232. ** ^Ibid ., September I4, 1821*, p. 1*6, U 6ibid ., December 13, 1823, p. 158. **7 critic , November 15, 1820, p. 1*7.

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68 which have the capacity to modify it. Thus it is that, while modulation may generally be said to refer to the modifications of pitch, its meaning may at tines be extended to include other vocal changes. Porter, in his discussion of modulation included, not only the pitch factor, but also other modifications such as pause, rate, loudness, and emphasis. ^8 Even though we may isolate each of these factors for comment, we must expect to find they frequently overlap and affect each other. For instance, rate may be modified by patterns of emphasis and pause, as in the case of one actor who "considerably retarded the progress of the play by his measured pauses and unmeaning emphasis. Porter thought the remedy for faulty modulation lay in the speaker's acquiring a "spirit of emphasis" which would enable him to choose his emphatic words with regard to the sense of the passage read.^ As proof that the elocutionist was not merely belaboring an obvious point, but working to improve the delivery of speakers and readers, we need only note one critic’s reference to the vocal habits of the actor Barry. The reviewer, in this instance, thought that the actor usually modulated his voice with good effect, until he was called upon to portray a "passion " ; then he fell into the error of "laying, without discretion, a most astounding emphasis on every second or third word, which, makes the dialogue jolt along like a hard-trotting horse. . . ."51 U 8 porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, pp. 106-118. ^American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], June, 1817, p. 137. ^Porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, p. 95. £*New York Mirror. July 18 , 1829, p. 13 .

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69 The importance of pause as an element in the speaker's delivery was pointed up by such elocutionists as Sheridan and Walker. The former devoted an entire lecture to the subject in Lectures on Elocution and, in his Lectures on Reading, devised a series of markings which could be placed in a script to indicate the length the pause was jfn to be held.7 * He cautioned the speaker or reader, however, that pauses were to be made in proportion to the importance of the sense, and not merely because of the grammatical structure. ^3 Walker, on the other hand, based his fifteen rules for the use of pause on grammatical structure.^ While he was careful to point out that effective use of this element depended not so much chi the number, as on the position, of the pauses, he nevertheless thought that speakers would generally pause every fifth or sixth word.^ Some elocutionists considered pause in its relationship to other elements of voice. Murray, for instance, considered two kinds of pause* first, an "emphatic pause" used to call the hearer's attention to a particular word or phrase j second, one which marked "distinctions of sense" used only to clarify the meaning.^ Porter also treated two kinds of pauses, but, unlike those of Murray, he labeled ore a "pause of suspension" which required with it a rising inflection and was used to denote that the sense was unfinished} the £2sheridan. Lectures on Reading, p. 98. 53Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution, p. 10£. ^IlWalker, Rhetorical Grammar , pp. 68-82. 55Walker, Elements of Elocution , p. 69. 56Murray, English Reader , p. 8.

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70 other he called a "final pause" which required a falling inflection and was to be used at the close of a sentence.-^ In the case of the critical comments regarding pause , and the efforts to improve this aspect of delivery, we might note the references which suggest its effects, either alone or in combination with other factors, on the manner in which the actor used his voice. For instance, the "sing-song style" of performance which one critic reported as occurring frequently,^® may have been due to "mechanical enunciations of the old school, " or as he noted in the case of another performance, to "pauses frequently too much protracted. . . It is possible that actors who were acquainted with the elocutionist's recommendations may have developed such habits of pausing when they disregarded the elocutionist's warning that too mechanical attention to the placing of pauses would result in a monotonous delivery, ^0 One of the major criticisms of the elder Kean was concerned with his employment of the pause. For all the praise that was accorded his performances, Kean was censured for interrupting sentences too much, and pausing between words which the reviewer thought ought not to be separated. As instances of this fault, the critic listed such readings as, "and leave the world for me — to bustle in"j "say then, my peace — is made" | and "learned— fathers of the church. In Boston, the same type 5>7porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery , pp. 5l-5>Uj 63-65. £%ew York Mirror , July 3, 1821;, p. 390. g frlbid ., July 10, 1821;, p. 399. 60jfurray, English Reader , p. llu 6lNew York Mirror , February 11, 1826, p. 227.

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71 of criticism was current. Critics there noted Kean’s ’’stubborn, monotonous voice deprives him of the power of pronouncing periods of any considerable length with elegance and beauty— sometimes even with ordinary propriety,’’ as was apparent in his reading of Othello’s speech beginning "0 now forever, /Farewell the tranquil mind. . . In commenting on his delivery of this speech, the critic objected that the "perpetual recurrence of the same tone at every pause in the measure, gave it very much the air of methodistieal preaching. "63 In this instance the critic is echoing Hurray’s concern over the mechanical and monotonous effect which resulted when speakers made the error of employing "a similar tone at every stop, and a uniform cadence at every period. " 6 ^ A Philadelphia critic went further in his criticism of Kean’s use of pause. He quoted Hazlitt's remark that "every sentence was an alternation of dead pauses and rapid utterance," and agreed with Hazlitt that this manner of speaking was as mechanical and offensive as the "common-place, drawling monotony of other players. The same critic protested that Kean not only introduced long pauses arbitrarily between words, but even "between syllables of the same word. "66 Another instance rf th* common concern over the use of pause and its effect can be found in a review by a New York critic who compared Kean with Cooke. He insisted i 6 2New England Galaxy , February 16, 1821, p. ?4. 63 Ibid. 6 iiMurray, English Reader, p. 1U. 6 f>From the Philadelphia National Gazette , in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting , p. 303 . 66 ibid

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72 The difference between the actors is in nothing more striking than in their use of pauses. It was seldom that Cooke made a halt in the utterance of a speech. . . . Cooke, no doubt sometimes omitted the use of pauses where they might have been introduced with the utmost propriety and effect} and Kean frequently brings them in where they only serve to interrupt the impetuous current of feeling, and weaken the sense of the pas sage. °7 A consideration of the problem of pause in the actor’s use of voice leads naturally to the problem of rate . The greater the number of pauses a speaker employs, the more likely his rate of utterance will be slowed. The elocutionist’s treatment of the problem, as typified by Enfield, usually involved the injunction to use a slow rate.^® Murray, likewise, spoke of a necessary moderation in rate if the speaker was to be distinct, but cautioned against a drawling manner which would render him monotonous. ^9 Theatrical critics, in their consideration of this aspect of voice, found evidence of performers who apparently ignored Itirray's warning. A periodical, the Critic , argued that one of Forrest’s most obvious faults was H a too slow and stately enunciation, interrupted by frequent pauses— of such passages as require to be spoken in a hurried colloquial manner."^ In their examination of the actor’s skill in employing this elocutionary factor, critics also discovered instances where the actor’s lack of skill resulted in the opposite type of abuse, too fast a rate. The Boston Galaxy, commenting on the delivery 67flew York Mirror , July 8, 1826, p. 399. ^Enfield, The Speaker, p. 7. 6?Murray, English Reader , p. 7* 7 Qsritic , December 13, 1828, p. Ill

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73 of the actor, Conway, noted its "graces of declamation" and its "irresistible charm," but added, "If there be a fault in his reading, it is when he summons up all his power to give effect to certain passages and hurries over a succeeding one, equally important, and which ought to be equally impressive. "71 Furthermore, when Mrs. Powell played Lady Randolph in Home's Douglas , the Galaxy commented that sane passages were almost lost by the rapidity of her delivery. 72 Maywood, an English actor who gained some degree of reputation in this country, was criticized also for too fast a rate of delivery. In his case, the critic thought the fault might be due to his "zeal to avoid the drawling and measured declamation of the Kemble school. . . ."73 Another aspect of the performer's delivery which both critic and elocutionist felt it necessary to treat occasionally was that of loudness. This element of vocal technique has already been mentioned Z in its relationship to the question of audibility. To judge from the critic's comments, the actors of this period must, at times, have been "injudicious" in the way they applied this attribute of voice. In so doing, they violated the rule, laid down by Porter^ and echoed by Sheridan and Murray, 75 that the effective speaker uses only as much voice as propriety would permit. Mr. Robertson, for example, "brayed 7 lNew England Galaxy, March 26, 1821;, n.p. 72 lbid ., October 28, 1825, n.p. 7 3 Ibid. , February 26, 1819, n.p. 7Uporter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, p. 109. 75sheridan, Lectures on Elocution , pp. 112-116$ see also Murray, English Reader, p. 6.

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7k out with the lungs of a stentor" what, the critic felt, should have been "poured like a leperous distilment into the very porches" of his fellow actor's ears. 76 it would appear that actors, even those of the stature of Forrest, could very well have profited by the instruction on the matter of loudness. At times the actor was probably guilty of using his voice simply to drown out other actors, or to make them appear insignificant. Montrose J. Moses indicates as much in an account of one of Forrest's English tours. It seems that an actor by the name of Gustavus Brooke was engaged to play Iago to Forrest's Othello. Brooke, who had been warned that Forrest always dominated the stage with his vocal power, was prepared to contest his supremacy. In the third act, Moses relates that "Forrest let forth the full volume of his utterance} Brooke replied with a counter volley} Forrest showed his astonishment} he had met his match. It rankled sorely. "77 The theatrical critic also had a great deal to say about the actor's use of emphasis . The widespread concern with this eleirent of technique is suggested by the fact critics felt it necessary, even when treating the actor' s performance in a cursory manner, to include such remarks as "A few passages were given by Mrs. Sloman with good emphasis 78 and discretion"}' or that Mr. Hilson ... numbered among his other qualities an emphasis generally just."7? The critic did not, however, 7 6American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 208. 77iioses, Forrest , pp. 328-329. 7%ew York Mirror , March 8, 1828, p, 279. 7 9American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], January, 1818, p. 213.

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75 always confine himself to such general remarks. He often analyzed the actor’s readings minutely, even to the point of indicating the words the actor emphasized, and suggesting the "justness" or "propriety" of other readings. In so doing, he was following the elocutionist's lead. Emphasis was given extensive treatment in the teachings of the elocutionists, with many of their rules being illustrated by marked passages. While it is not necessary, here, to analyze the complexities which the elocutionists found in this phase of their subject, it might be useful to look at some general theories with regard to it. Walker made a distinction between two kinds of emphasis. He defined particular emphasis as that which employed increase force and inflection corresponding to the meaning. He identified a second type, general emphasis , as that which was not regulated by the sense of the passage read, but by the taste and feeling of the reader.® 0 It may have been the actor's over-indulgence in this latter type of emphasis which brought down the critic's censure. Porter limited emnhasis to a "distinctive utterance" which best conveys meaning. Murray thought that emphasis should be used in reading according to the pattern found in "common discourse." He also observed that, while some persons use very little emphasis in speaking, others carry it far beyond anything to be found in common discourse, and even sometimes throw it on words which are trifling in themselves. According to Murray, the greatest fault was that of multiplying emphasis too much and using it indiscriminately. ®2 Stalker, Lectures on Elocution, p. 232. SlPorter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery , p. 71. 82Murray, English Reader , pp. 9-10.

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76 The theatrical criticism of the period contains numerous examples which parallel the elocutionist’s treatment of the subject of emphasis. One reviewer, for instance, could not praise Forrest enough for his portrayal of Brutus (in Payne's play), but did notice "one false reading" which he evidently thought was so glaring as to be worthy of correcting. In the line, "The signs that strain the very string of life," he questioned Forrest's emphasis on the italicized word, and put forth his own opinion that the word life should be the emphatic word.^3 The importance attached to the problem of emphasis and the careful attention given to the actor's application of it is demonstrated by the length to which the critic would go to quote lines, mark the emphatic words, and suggest "correct" or more appropriate readings. One critic took the trouble to note that the following lines should be spoken with emphasis on the italicized words* Let none but fathers search— they must prevail— And yet he was a father who did this! He pointed out that Mr. Pritchard had not emphasized them in this manner during performance j instead, he had delivered the line as follows* And yet he was a father who did this 1 There are many other examples of this sort of criticism. One critic, reviewing Kean's Richard III, offered the following objection* We consider he should have laid stress upon the words 'the world,' where he says to his wife, 'the world would call that murder'; instead of letting the whole line slip by without a single emphasis. And we think too, he mi$it be 93New York Mirror , December 8, 1827, p. 171. ^ American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 208.

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77 wrong in laying a force upon the word 'thee,' when in courting Lady Anne, he says, ’He lives that loves thee better than he could’: should the point not have been upon ’he could'?" These and similar examples indicate the critic, as well as the elocutionist of the period, was greatly concerned with the problem of "correct" emphasis. Having established the minute attention which the theatrical critics gave to the problems of modulation, rate, pause, loudness, and emphasis during this portion of the nineteenth century, we may now inquire whether the critic's object may not have had its parallel in the elocutionist's stress on the use of these factors in developing the ability to read well. It must be remembered that, at this time, illusionist ic character portrayal was not an ideal to be sought after* instead, the Interest centered in the performer's exhibition of his talents. Indeed, we have noted practically no reference to character portrayal as such. In the periodical criticism explored in this study, there are but few and scattered references to an actor's portrayal of character in anything like the modem sense of that term. The absence of any significant concern with this factor would suggest that both the critic and -the audience were interested in how well the actor used his voice in getting across the force and beauty of the author's conception. In essence, this becomes an interest in the actor's ability to "read" a role well. This interest in the actor's ability to "read" with 'justness and propriety" may well have had its origin in the elocutionist's ®%ew York Mirror , February 11, 1826, p. 227.

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78 distinction between two types of oral situations. These were, first, the situation in which the speaker is delivering his own thoughts j and, second, that in which he is repeating the ideas of another. Sheridan and other elocutionists devoted whole treatises to the art of reading. In these, the elocutionist took the position, that by analyzing the elements of voice and determining how they were used, a reader would be able to communicate the author's meaning. The theatrical critic was merely applying the elocutionary lessons and standards of the day when he showed an Interest in whether or not the actor was able to employ modulation, pause, volume, rate, and emphasis in a manner that would supply "propriety,” "justness," and "beauty," to his "reading." This attitude is perhaps nowhere better revealed than in the comment which was prompted by revivals of School for Scandal and Twelfth Wight . In this instance the critic pointed out that portrayal of a Shakespearean character demands "some person who can entirely comprehend and enjoy the beauties which sparkle through the page, to realize the image of the imagination, and impart the cham of voice, accent, energy, and passion to the silent traces of the poet's fancy. Nowhere in this statement is there any reference to an actor's ability to portray character as we think of it today, ftie demand is rather for an understanding of the author's material and the vocal capacity to express it well, a requirement which, it might be noted, accorded well with the elocutionist's teachings. This same critic went on to extoll 8oWilliam Cockin, The Art of Delivering Written Language (London, 1775), pp. 2-3. 87New York Mirror , May lit, 1825, p. 330.

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79 the excellencies of Miss Kelly's acting in these two classics* He thought that, in her hands, "Sheridan's sentiment assumes the garb of poetry, and Shakespeare's poetry is magnified into a wild and enchanted passion which defies the power of voiceless language to describe."®® Not only did he feel that Miss Kelly was ideally suited to play the female characters of Shakespeare, but he also believed that the speech commencing "Build me a willow cabin at thy gate," was "without exception the finest specimen of reading and declamation" he had ever heard. ®? Another review pointed out that the tones of Miss Kelly's voice were so "various and sweet," and "her reading so scrupulously correct," that every word which she spoke went "home to the heart" ?° (as John Mason had desired those of every performer should do). The tendency to focus attention on the actor's skill in reading is further reflected in a statement from the Galaxy which noted that "violations of sense are so common on the stage, that it was a pleasure to hear Mrs. Henry whose excellence lay in "a clear conception of the meaning; in a correct emphasis; and appropriate cadence. Another critic, who appreciated good reading in the actor, praised Mr. Barry for doing what "not one in a hundred can, that is, read poetry properly. He pronounces distinctly, minds his stops, accentuates his words with judgment, and modulates the tones of his voice with good effect."? 2 88ibid. 8?Ibid. 90lbid«, April 19, 1825, p. 29k. 9 lNew England Galaxy . April 22, 1825, n.p. 92New York Mirror , July 18, 1829, p. Ui.

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This preoccupation with communicative factors# rather than character portrayal, produced an abundance of references to "faults" in reading. These were by no means limited to the minor actors of the period, nor to the untrained. The critic pointed to "errors" in reading among the great, as well as the minor, actors. A Boston critic, V taking note of the faults which Coleman of the New York Evening Post had detected in Kean’s reading, thought they were such as "few schoolboys would be guilty of. "93 When Kean finally arrived in Boston, this same critic found him "utterly incapable of elegant and tasteful reading. "9^ The Philadelphia critic, "Betterton," apparently agreed with this evaluation of Kean’s ability as a "reader," since he wrote, "Mr. Kean has no pretense and indeed, no ability, to keep up numbers. His auditor can have no perception of rhythm or even verse, where a sort of amalgam is made of whole phrases either by hurry or hoarseness of utterance; • • ."95 in reviews of the period other critics placed a similar premium on good reading. For example, when listing the many good qualities of the actor, Barrett, a Boston critic made a point of the fact that "his reading indicates he understands his author and is willing to repeat what the author set down."^ When Conway appeared in Boston, the same critic declared, "A great excellence of this gentleman is the correctness of his reading. "97 9 3New England Galaxy , December 8, 1820, n.p. 9Ulbid., Februaiy 16, li21, p. 7h» 95From the Philadelphia National Gazette, in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting p. 61. 9 6New England Galaxy , September 20, 1822, n.p. 97 lbid . , February 27, 182U, n.p.

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81 The ability to read well involved the closely-related ability to declaim. The difference between "reading" and "declaiming" was probably only one of degree, the latter being more formal and requiring a more "heightened" form of utterance. Some plays were, indeed, thought to require a declamatory style because of the manner in which they were written. One critic was probably indicating an awareness of this difference when he referred to the language of the play, Rolla , as "that of declamation rather than nature."?® similarly, the Galaxy said of Julius Caesar that "its declamatory passages are among the finest speciments of eloquence in our language; and when these are delivered with propriety, they afford an entertainment of the hipest kind to a cultivated and refined taste." The actor who could declaim \ y these passages well was usually acclaimed for his ability to do so; for instance, the Boston critic wrote that Duff’s style of declamation was "happily adapted" to the speeches of Brutus. 100 Occasionally, however, the actor must have mistaken mere noise and rant for good declamation, for Mr. Price’s declamation was described as "more 'raw and gusty' than the 'the troubled Tiber, chafing with his shores.'" 101 In the lisht of such comments as these, we can but conclude that the ability to declaim was valued as one of the many talents the actor of the period was expected to display, especially in particular scenes which lent themselves readily to oratorical exhibition. ?® Critic , November 29, 1828, p, 80. 9 9New England Galaxy , November 20, 1818, n.p. lO Olbld ., February 27, 1818, n.p. 1 0 1 Ibid . , November 20, 1818, n.p.

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82 An exploration of the theatrical criticisms of acting during the period l8l$ to 181*0 reveals that the critic was much concerned with the manner in which the actor used his voice* The theatrical critic, like the elocutionist, and perimps because of his pervading influence, placed great importance upon the power and effect achieved by the oral aspect of delivery. Both critic and elocutionist had insisted upon two general standards of vocal usage* first, the speaker’s voice must be easily heard and understood; and second, it must be pleasing in its quality. Furthermore, the critic looked for such specific vocal attributes as* compass sufficient for modulation through a wide pitch range, appropriate inflections and cadences , varying degrees of * * : • • I loudness , proper rate of utterance, suitable length and number of pauses , and "justness” in laying emphasis * These factors were considered necessary, in part at least, to accomplish those transitions which thrilled the audiences of that day. Most of all, perhaps, the critic desired that the actor possess these attributes of voice so that he might exhibit the full force and beauty of the playwright’s meaning, and be able when it was demanded of him, to adapt his mode of speaking to -the declamatory nature of the material.

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CHAPTER 17 PHYSICAL ASPECTS OF AMERICAN ACTING . this gentleman's very body thinks and reflects . " — Mirror An examination of nineteenth-century American criticism indicates that, in addition to the requirement that the performer meet certain standards of vocal expression, both the critic and the elocutionist recommended goals for his use of bodily action, attitude, gesticulation, and facial expression. It becomes apparent, also, that both critic and elocutionist tended to agree in regard to the standards for effective bodily action, and to share the belief that through training and the judicious application of various rules, those standards could be met. These views regarding effective bodily action, however, were predicated on the belief or conviction that a performer must first possess some measure of physical endowment before rules regulating bodily movement could prove effective. Austin, an elocutionist who devoted the major part of his study to the physical aspect of the orator's art, thought the rules he had devised the best that could be collected from ancient and modem writers; yet, he was careful to observe that rules could not bestow what nature had denied. ^ Porter ^Austin, Chironomia , Preface, p. x. 83

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81 * agreed that the public speaker's first requisite must be an adequate physique. He took care to point out that "a defect, original or accidental, in the conformation of the body,” was one source of "faults of rhetorical action. "2 Speaking in more general terms, but to the same end, Hugh Blair insisted that, to become an artist, a person had to have some measure of genius or talent as a gift from nature. Blair assigned the Individual the responsibility of improving these through art and study, but he added the warning that training could not make up for a lack of natural endowment. 3 Such a philosophy found an expression in the Mirror's opinion that no living actor united as much "power and original genius with correct taste and cultivated talents," as Macready, who had nearly all that nature could give plus all that taste and talent could acquire. U One critic summed the matter up in these words! ) "Nature must have done much, and education more, to form a consummate actor. In view of the importance attached to the actor's physical endowment, we might well expect the critic to look, first of all, for that requisite. That he did so is apparent from Moses's statement that Dunlap and Clapp, in their theatrical criticisms, "had an eye for physical particularities. In this regard Moses also notes, "When 2Porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery , p. 1J>2. 3Hu$i Blair, Lectures on Rhetoric and Belles Lettres (7th Am. ed.j New York, 1817), p. 27. l^New York Mirror , October 7, 1826, p, 87. ^American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], August, 1817, p. 302. ^Moses, Forrest, p. 27.

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85 critics spoke of ConwayÂ’s fine figure as being suited to the role of Coriolanus, it becomes apparent that outward dignity, external statuesqueness, the grand manner, were as much parts of the acting of the day as the well-rounded utterance.Â’'? The sheer stature of Conway had its own statement to make in the estimation of one critic, who wrote as follows! He is more than six feet in heishtj his limbs are wellproportionedj and when he becomes animated with his part, he is graceful and dignified in the extreme. . . . his very appearance caused us to experience a thrill of emotion, for much as we had heard of him we did not expect to behold a figure so elegant and impressive. There is something startling in his gigantic form; when wanned by passion, it seems to dilate and become yet more grand if the very god Mars walked in our presence. 8 It would seem that, for the critic of the day, magnificent physiques were required to portray "magnificent" characters. Conversely, a lack of these physical requisites became a factor to be considered in evaluating an actorÂ’s fitness for particular roles. Clapp, the Boston critic, was subscribing to this standard when he described Edmund Kean as "scarcely above middle height," and "deficient in dignity of deportment for certain characters . "9 Even the Philadelphia critic, who felt "nature had endowed Mr. Kean with a vigorous genius, and important physical qualities, for his pursuit ... ,"10 found it necessary to make a reservation regarding KeanÂ’s physical stature. In referring to his muscular frame he observed that it was "well and elegantly shaped, except in the shoulders, 7 Ibid ., pp. 33-3U. 8lfew York Mirror, January 31# 1821;, p. 210. 9Clapp, Boston Stage , p, 178. lOFrom the Philadelphia National Gazette , in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting , p. 300.

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86 which, being round and heavy in appearance, detract much from the just effect of his other proportions . A critic of the Albion was far less kind in assessing the effect of a performer’s lack of height He could not remember whether it had been said o ^Kea Kean or Garrick in the role of Othello that he "appeared like Desdemona’s little black boy that handed her her tea-kettle," rather than the warrior he was supposed to be .12 jfhe decree to which physical endowment was prized in the actor is suggested by the following comment concerning the actor Wallack. This reference, which may be taken as fairly typical, included the opinion that "few men . . . possess so noble a person, or a more intelligent and beautiful countenance."^ With such a premium placed on the male physique, it is somewhat surprising that the figures of the actresses received less comment. Nevertheless, it was only occasionally that the critic singled out an actress for her physical charms. When he did, he employed far more general terms than those used to describe the actor. A critic, for • • ' 1 instance, dismissed one actress, a Miss Rock, with the rather terse description: "person, small, well-formed} carriage, easy and graceful} countenance, pleasingly expressive, though not handsome. . * ."^ii Even the very popular Clara Fisher received only the passing remark that her face was "charming even in a state of repose" and "lovely indeed" l llbid . I SAlblon , December 2k, 1825, p. 221. 13New Tork Mirror, June 5, 182k, p. 355. l llbid . . December 1, 1827, p. 167

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87 •when ’’limited by feeling."-^ Many of the comine nts invite the belief that the critic was being gallant in not describing the actress's figure . One reviewer, for example, gave Mrs. Whitlock credit for the ''numberless beauties of her performance" in spite of "any little deficiencies, or redundancies , of figure. • . ."^ On the other hand, seme actresses appear to have been able to compensate for their lack of acting ability by displaying a lovely figure. After itemizing the vocal faults of one such person, the critic added, "But what was lost to the ear was made up to the eye; and who will trouble himself about the sounds of words, while gazing on the goddess of beauty? "17 It is obvious that, for the critic of the first part of the nineteenth century, a considerable portion of that gift of nature necessary for the actor to possess was a body of good proportions, one capable of embodying the characters he was called on to portray. It is equally true that, however necessary the physical requirements were thought to be, mere physique was not enough to meet the standard which j critic and elocutionist set for the orator and actor. These natural capacities were to be trained and improved. It is paradoxical to note, therefore, that some of the greatest actors achieved fame in spite of their lack of stature and physical robustness. It was probably true that, xinder the spell of great acting, "the audiences forgot their lack of stature and saw only what Byron saw in Kean — a soul; what Coleridge l ^Ibid ., September 12, 1827, p. 76. l 6Polyanthos . December, 1812, p. 161*. 17lbid., October, 1812, p. 53

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88 saw in Kean’s Macbeth— flashes of lightning; ’/hat Walt Whitman felt in Booth — fire, energy, abandon. Actors of those days aimed to make the pit tremble, and tremble it did. Audiences of nineteenth-century America evidently expected critics to give minute and detailed criticism of the manner in which the actor physically portrayed his role. One reviewer commented that the theatrical critic must be always on the alert so as not to miss •'the most taking and attractive" parts of a performance, since the audience would never let "a word or action" of a performer escape its notice. 20 In assessing the value of the action which the actor employed, the theatrical critic looked for grace and elegance, moderation, appropriateness, and force. As in the case of other points of criticism or standards of evaluation, these were qualities which the elocutionist looked for in the public speaker's delivery. 21 Austin, we discover, wanted the orator to have grace and decorum in his bodily action. 22 Sheridan, on the other hand, desired the speaker or reader to possess force and grace; the former as a gift of nature, the latter acquired through art. 2 3 Walker set as his standard "a just and elegant adaptation of every part of the body to the nature and import of the subject."24 i^Moses, Forrest , p. 31. 1 9lbid . 2QNew York Mirror , July 25, 1835, p. 30. if2lHaberman, in Histoiy of Speech Education, p. 110. 22Austin, Chironomia , pp. 192U-5. 23Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution, p. 153. 2ljWalker, Elements of Elocution , p. 301

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89 The critic tended to prize these same qualities, and we find an actress, Mrs. Barnes, being praised because her "action was graceful and appropriate."^ The same critic, doling out censure for the lack of these qualities, reported that the role of Henry, in Speed the Plough , was played by some stranger whose manners and action were stiff and only occasionally expressive and appropriate . 26 in l82ii, when Cooper and Conway were' exchanging roles in Venice Preserved at every other performance, one critic thought Cooper's playing of Jaffier "chaste" and "elegant," with none of the affectation noticed in other performers of this role. While he found Cooper's "every movement and action . . • elegant and proper . • . ,"27 he thought Conway's physical portrayal so "uncouth" and "unbecoming" that he would not even have recognized the play being performed without the aid of the handbill. Another instance of the critics* * tendency to share the elocutionists' views regarding the role and importance of bodily action can be found in a comment on Cooper's version of the dagger scene in Macbeth. In this case the critic of the American Monthly thought Cooper's performance admirable because "he gave effect to every word," with his physical movement. 28 This, of course, is completely in accord with Austin's belief that, in many passages a speaker or reader might be called on to deliver, each word was so important that it should be marked with 25> American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], August, 1817, p* 298. 2 6ibid ., p. 300. 27New York Mirror , April 10, 182U, p. 291. • y * * 2 8American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 210.

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90 bodily action. Austin and other elocutionists were careful, however, to caution the performer against too much bodily action. 30 Performers who followed the recommendation, but ignored the warning, called down criticism typified by that directed against the actor Barry. While Barry was commended for his playing of a sailor’s role, he was advised to "prune away certain excrescences" of action. The critic was aware that "while sailors are occasionally in the habit of rolling as they walk — throwing up their heels —masticating tobacco— and hoisting their inexpressibles— there is no reason in nature why they should be incessantly going throu$\ one of these evolutions. "31 Other violations of the rule concerning excessive physical action may be noted in the Critic’s objection to the elder Booth’s "redundancy of action," which the reviewer considered this actor’s "great and besetting sin. "32 The following month, however, this same critic commended the comedian, Barrett, because of his "degree of ease and vivacity," and for the fact that, when he was on stage, there was no pause in the action, no waiting for cues. While the critic is obviously referring to the action of the play as a whole, the fact remains that he attributed its excellence to the actor's animation which, in his eyes, gave life even to the "dull clods supporting him. "33 Activity for the 29Austin, Chironomia. pp, 1*11*4*1*6. 3 0lbid . ; see also Porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery , p. 160. 31Hew York Mirror , February 2k, 1827, p. 21*7. 32 C ri tic , November 15, 1828, p. 1*5. 3 3lbid ., December 6, 1828, p. 95.

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91 sake of activity rarely, if ever, received any commendation from the critic. Mr. Simpson, in one production, received no praise from the critic even though he "was certainly very active and busy. . • This aversion to too much action caused the Galaxy , on one occasion, to note the improvement of Mr. Pride, whose fault had been "an exuberance of breath and action. "3^ The extremes to which some actors evidently went to appear active on the stage is exemplified by the performer who was requested, in the event he was not actually afflicted with St. Vitus's dance, to spare the audience "some of his convulsive twitches, and to stand still for one second, at a time, if possible ."36 Even Kean came in for his share of this kind of censure. One critic did not agree with the reviewers who claimed Kean merited praise because he appeared to throw his whole soul into the characters he portrayed. Instead, he found Kean's portrayal characterized by "excessive action." He thought Kean guilty of constantly "running about the stage, beating his breast, or alternately clenching and opening his hands, fumbling about his neck, [making] sudden starts and rapid transitions. . . ."37 Furthermore, he complained that when "addressing other performers! — he [Kean] steps furiously up to them, thrusts his face into theirs, and having finished his speech, rushes from them with a rapidity which 3 American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 206. 3 5n@w England Galaxy. November 27, I8l8, n.p. 3 6American Monthly Magazine , quoted in Odell, Annals , I, U79. 37 New England Galaxy. February 23, 1821, p. ?8.

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92 nothing but the stage box can arrest. "3® A similar viewpoint was demonstrated by a New York critic who took issue with a "morning paper’s" recommendation that "a little dash of the Kean style" would give "finish and picture" to Cooper’s playing of Virginius. This critic asked his readers to imagine Cooper departing from one of his attitudes which "Jove mi edit envy and Apollo attempt to imitate in vain" in order to thump his breast with a truncheon or gauntlet, and stalk in "solemn mockery" across the stage. Such activity on Cooper's part would, he believed, serve only to excite the hisses, not the applause, of the audience. 3 9 Although the critic readily condemned action which was inelegant or excessive, he was also quick to censure an actor for employing too little action. The elder Booth, whose "redundancy of action" had been noted on some occasions, was guilty at other times of transgressing too far in the other direction. The American , for example, found "something tame" in this actor’s level scenes. "UO in 1831, the Mirror saw fit to report Booth's performance of Sir Giles Overreach was "a spiritless affair." In that instance, except for a few "bursts of excellence," the critic thought he "shuffled along" with unpardonable carelessness, content to give the audience only a "few touches" now and then. Such a manner of playing, the critic asserted, gave the appearance of an artist "who finishes a face here, and an arm there — and leaves all the groups and landscape in the background rudely sketched. "^3. 38ibld. 39New York Mirror , September 27, 1823, p. 70. UOQuoted from the American , in Odell, Annals , III, 13. klNew York Mirror , September 13, 1831, p, 71.

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93 Mien the actor employed bodily activity which was appropriate and forceful, he was certain to be praised. The appeal of forceful and appropriate action to the audience of the day is reflected inf Washington Irving's account of a scene in which Cooke played Iago to Kemble's Othello: In the scene in which Iago instils his suspicions, Cooke grasped Kemble's left hand with his own, and then fixed his right like a claw on his shoulder. In this position, drawing himself up to him with his short am, he breathed his poisonous whispers. Kemble coiled and twisted hi; writhing to get away, his right hand clasping his darting his eye back on Iago . It was wonderful.^ Even action of a violent sort was commended in the actor when the play was thou$it to demand it. A Boston critic, for example, believed the role of Glenroy afforded "ample scope for the highest powers of an i hands, brow, and l ! -J actor," since it demanded "rapid transitions from paroxysms of joy to those of grief, and from affection to indignation. "k3 Such action, in the critic's estimation, could be accomplished only by an actor with the extraordinary "powers of mind and command of limb and feature," needed to exhibit these gradations of emotion correctly and to give the spectator a sense of their reality.^ References to a performance by Charles Kean serve as an additional index to this concept of appropriateness, On this occasion the younger Kean was praised for his "clear, melodious and distinct reading," which was better suited to the "moral ^Quoted in Brander Matthews and Laurence Hutton, Actors and Actresses of C-reat Britain and the United States : From th e Davs of David Garrick to the Present Time (5 vols.: New tt t A : England Galaxy, April 3, 1818, n.p, Wlbid.

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9k lesson" of Hamlet than excessive "gesticulation and action. "^2 Although this critic appeared to approve a vocal emphasis in the playing of Hamlet, he nevertheless took note of Kean's "fine action throughout, the chasteness of his gesticulation, [and] his thorough acquaintance with • * . the business of the play," features which made his Hamlet a "most finished performance."^ In eneral, it might be said that the critic's standards for the actor’s stage action were the same as those which were admired by the elocutionists. Just as Sheridan, Walker, Austin, Porter and other elocutionists recommended grace, moderation, force, and appropriateness as the qualities which should characterize the speaker's bodily action, the theatrical critic recommended them as virtues to be cultivated by the actor. The performer was praised when he conformed to the requirements, and censured when he failed to do so. The problem of analyzing the actor's bodily action is somewhat similar to that of analyzing his use of voice. Although various elements may be isolated for comment, we must remember that these attitudes , gestures , and facial expressions are integral parts of action as a whole. Each affects, or is affected by, every other component. The matter of attitude to which the theatrical critic gave much of his attention, was in reality an inseparable part of the actor's stage action and helped form its character. Nevertheless, like each of the other elements, attitude had its own statement to make apart from its involvement in the k^New York Mirror, September 25, 1830, p. 91 u l^Ibid.

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95 larger pattern of the stage action. From the critics' many references to "picturesque" and "graceful" attitudes, it is clear that "attitude" was a tern which was applied to the actor's bo dily positions or postures. It is also apparent that these positions were "struck" and held for a period of time; in sane cases, too long a time, according to the critic. k? By turning to the elocutionist, moreover, we can get a precise picture of what these attitudes were like. Austin, for instance, advised the orator to adopt such attitudes and positions as turned moderately outward] the limbs disposed so as to support the body with ease and, at the same time, be subject to change with facility; While Austin did not define attitude per se, the preceding instructions call forth a picture which might well be that of an actor of the nineteenth-century "teapot school." As for the trunk of the body, Austin thou^it that it should be well-balanced and sustained erect on the supporting limbs except when attitudes required the body to be inclined.^ In this connection, we might note that the Galaxy, in reviewing a reading by Duff, commended his appropriate "reclining posture" on the line* "The vanquish'd victor sunk upon her breast." The reviewer called attention to the fact that, following the line, the reader should have made a pause until he recovered his erect position. Mr. Duff, however, must have maintained this attitude much too long, since U 7New England Galaxy. December 5, 1817, n.p. were consistent with manly and simple the leg and thigh braced, but not contracted; and the knee straightened •/ ^Austin, Chironomia, pp. 298-305.

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96 the reviewer observed that he "preserved the recumbent state of his body through two or three lines. "^9 Another requirement which Austin made for the employment of attitude was that the position assumed must be capable of being varied easily. That condition required that the weight of the body be on one leg, with the other leg so placed as to be able to relieve it promptly. In addition, the foot on which the weight rested was to be placed so that a perpendicular line from the "hole of the neck" would pass through the heel of that foot.^ 0 Additional light is shed on the critic's use of the term by Porter's inference that attitude, in the theatrical sense of the term, had a more specific meaning than that of "general positions of the body" which his elocutionary writings assigned to it. He did, however, point out that an erect attitude nd^it denote "majesty," "activity," or "strength"} while leaning attitudes expressed, among other things, "affection" or " indolence. The English critic, Hazlitt, has left what is probably one of the most vivid accounts of what an actor's attitude might embody, and how it might impress both critic and audience. Describing the death scene in Edmund Kean's Richard in, Hazlitt said, , He fought like one drunk with wounds j and the attitude in I which he stands with his hands stretched out, after his sword is taken from him, had a preternatural and terrific grandeur, as if his will could not be disarmed phantoms of his despair had power to kill. 52 k9 New England Galaxy . Januaiy 2, 1818, n.p. 50Austin, Chironomia , pp. 295-296. 5lporter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, pp. 11*8, 1J>1. 52tf. a. Darlington, The Actor and His Audience (London, 191*9), p. 111. , and the very zj

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97 In another place Haalltt spoke of the "novelty and propriety" of Kean’s action, and his ability to present a "series of striking pictures" which gave "perpetually fresh shocks of delight and surprise."''-^ These "striking pictures" were the attitudes through which the actor revealed his concept of a character in a particular situation. This is best illustrated by an American critic’s report that "Mr. Kean’s attitudes are at all times good} but the exquisite dignity of a kind of fencing posture in the fourth act, when he poises his falchion and addresses it with, ’Come forth, my honest sword,’ made the finest attitude we ever beheld upon the stage. • . When Austin’s description of attitude, which has the characteristics of the aforementioned "fencing position," is equated with Murdoch’s description of the "teapot style" of acting, it is possible to arrive at a fairly clear picture of an actor in an attitude . In the employment of the factor of attitude to demonstrate concepts of character, or to picture the plight of a character in a particular situation, we might expect the actor, in making transitions from one pose or posture to another, to appear highly mechanical. There are indications in the theatrical criticism that attitudes sometimes might have been marred by the actor’s "stubborn inflexibility of limb and feature, which refuses to bend to the power of understanding, and defeats the intended effect of a judicious conception, or that , p. 110. s, i&New York Mirror, February 11, 1826, p. 227. 5 $Neu England Galaxy. October 5, 1821, p. 206.

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98 an actorÂ’s attitude, although manly and graceful, might be less effective because the actor accompanied it by M a certain stiffness or fulness of chest. "56 The comments of the theatrical critics lead us to believe, however, that such a device, in the hands of a superior actor, could become a potent factor by which the actor could affect the emotions of an audience. The kind of statement which the critic found in the actorÂ’s use of attitude is revealed in a Galaxy review which gave a summary of CooperÂ’s acting technique. The reviewer thought Cooper inferior only to John Kemble in "dignified deportment and picturesque attitude . "57 Referring to CooperÂ’s performance of Brutus in the play by Payne, the critic observed that his attitudes were "so noble and apparently unaffected," that a sculptor might have studied them with advantage. 58 Further testimony to the skill of Cooper in using attitudes occurs in a long and laudatory article which a Mirror critic wrote in 1823 concerning Cooper's portrayal of Damon. The critic described the attitude in which Cooper depicted the first realization of his "cruel, terrible situation" when he suspected that lythias had been executed in his stead. The critic took note of the "flash of suspicion that crossed his mind, and the whole withering truth bursting upon him, ... all the agonizing emotions of his agonizing emotions of his soul, ... gathered into the single expression, "Almifdrty godslÂ’ [as] he stands the picture of mute despair. "59 J&New York Mirror . November 15, 1823, p. 123. 57 New England Galaxy, December 31, 1819, n.p. 5>8ibld. 59New York Mirror , September 20, 1823, p. 61.

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99 The critic went on to say that Lucullus, Damon’s servant in the play, gazed upon this attitude of Cooper in "his terrible convulsions as a man would venture to look into the crater of the burning Etna. "6° But if the critic could read all these things into the attitude assumed by the actor at this point, it is probable, from the critic's further comment that the audience was even more powerfully affected by an attitude which Cooper next assumed. The critic says that Cooper turned from this attitude to vent his rage on his servant and seized him by the throat. While the servant desperately struggled to free himself from this death-grip of his master. Cooper evidently assumed another attitude which the critic described as one in which "he stood a monument in mute fury, like the lofty form of Hercules, strangling to death the conquered lion of Nemaea."6l So powerful, indeed, was the effect of this attitude of Cooper’s that, according to the critic's account, "many of the audience rose on their feet," uttering "exclamations of astonishment."^ 2 Having achieved the effect intended with the assumption of the attitude. Cooper then "dragged off the struggling Luculus, amidst loud and reiterated thunders of applaus e ." Such references to the actor's use of this physical factor of the actor's technique lead us to believe that attitude could be, and obviously many times was, highly effective in assisting the actor to depict character and emotion. 6 0lbid . 6l Ibid. 62 Ibid. 6 3 lhid .

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100 Another aspect of bodily action, to which the critic gave special consideration, was that of gesture , In the period we are studying, the term "gesture” could refer to the action and position of any part of the body. 6k It also had the more limited meaning which involved only the movement of the hands and arms. For this discussion, we are interested in gesture in this latter sense. The correspondence we find between the elocutionist’s precepts for gesture and the usage of the stage is a very close one. Austin, for instance, thought the theatre provided public speakers with the only correct models for gesture. 65 In his opinion, the public speaker had a great deal in common with the actor, for he, too must be able to judge when the air is to be divided by the am and when he is to move his head, body, limbs, and how he is to do all this with effectiveness, propriety, and grace. ^ Porter probably agreed with Austin that the actor's gestures might well be copied by the public speaker, for he had approved of Whitefield's "boldness and variety of action bordering cm that of the stage," and his gesture which the elocutionist thought almost as authoritative as Caesar's. 67 The theatrical critic, like the elocutionist, considered gesture a highly important item of the performer's technique and thought a good part of the actor's power lay in his ability to use this element of ^Austin, Chironomia , p. 133, Ibid . 66lbid., p. 137. 6?Porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, p. 157, fh.

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101 action effectively. The power which the critic thought this factor of physical action to have is perhaps nowhere better stated than in one critic's reference to Kean's use of gestures. Speaking of the actor's portrayal of Richard 133, the critic declared, • * • we could almost perceive the monarch's thought and wishes from the mere play of Mr. Kean's fingers. And this, indeed, connected with his bye-play [sic], is one of the best proofs of his being a great actor j for you may perceive his desires and expectations even ftom the nervous motion of his extremities, and fancy that this gentleman's very body thinks and reflects. 68 One of the most enthusiastic responses to an actor's skill in the use of gesture was recorded by James Gould who believed that no other actor had ever achieved such control over the "vital and involuntary functions" as had J, B. Booth. "He would tremble from head to foot," said Gould, "or tremble in one outstretched arm to the finger tips, while holding it in the firm grasp of the other hand. . . ,"69 The measure of importance attached to this aspect of delivery is suggested by the minuteness of detail with which critics treated the gestures of actors. One critic, speaking of an actor named Caldwell, said that, in the use of his arms, this comedian was unusually stiff. While walking about the stage, according to this critic, he would let his arms dangle from his shoulders at an angle of forty-five degrees; and when he sat down, instead of letting his hands recline in some easy position, he would fidget with his gloves or smooth his hose.70 We might 68nsw York Mirror , February 11, 1826, p. 227. 69Quoted in Dutton Cook, Hours with the Players (new ed.; London. 1883), p. 218. Critic , November 15, 1828, p. U7.

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102 note, in passing, that in letting his arms "dangle at the forty-five degree angle" Caldwell may have been following one of Walker's prescriptions for the orator's gesture, one obviously no longer esteemed by the critic* Walker had cautioned the speaker, when finishing a gesture to let the arm "drop lifeless down to the side," but he added, "The utmost care must be taken to keep the elbow from inclining to the body, and to let the arms, when not hanging at rest hy the side, approach to the action we call a -kimbo [sic]. "71 The theatrical critic, while condemning excessive or unmeaning gesture, praised the actor when he employed gestures that were meaningful and which had a telling effect on the audience. Conway's use of gesture, when playing Coriolanus, was described by the critic as being excellent because it was "devoid of rant, or ill-timed energy. "72 Later when Conway was playing Othello, his death scene was reported to have brought bravos from the audience. It is obvious that the critic gave due credit to the effectiveness of^Conway's gestures. His account of the scene stated} When he had plunged the steel to his heart, and felt that he was near death, it seemed the thought of his Desdemona stole over his dying moments) and even as he was falling, he made an attempt to reach the cold form of her he had loved so well — He turned himself around, but unable to reach her, he stretched forth his arms and gazed for moment upon her) then fell lifeless to the ground. 73 It would appear, then, the critic expected the actor to perform his role, using gestures with ease and grace and telling effect. From the detail 71Walker, Elements on Elocution , p. 30J>. 72New York Mirror . January 31, 182]*, p. 21. 7 3lbid . . February 7, 1821} , p. 219

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103 with which the critic treated the subject, we must consider that gesture formed one item by which the actor's excellence, or the lack of it, was measured. Facial expression , like the other facets of bodily activity, received its due share of attention from the theatrical critic. That it was an important part of the actor's technique is demonstrated in the comment of one critic that John Reeves's "face alone, like that of Liston, has saved many a stupid farce and melodrama from irretrievable failure." 7^ Critic and audience looked to the actor to make use of his facial expression as one element of his technique in portraying character and emotion, Dutton Cook thou$it Charles Kean's "solemn fixedness of facial expression" aided him in giving "the effect of concentration and intensity to many of his performances. "75 Lewes, however, did not agree and thought the younger Kean's face "utterly without physiognomical play." Lewes went on to accuse young Kean of holding "one stolid expression immovable as an ancient mask" throughout a scene, in contrast to his father's unforgettable looks," which were "terrible to fellow-actors no less than to spectators. "76 The critics and writers, however, did not always confine themselves to such general comments. They wrote of the actor's facial expression in much more specific language, and in language resembling that of the dicta of the elocutionists on the subject. The theatrical 7%ew York Mirror . November lU, 1835, p. 158. 75cook, Hours with Players , p. 352. 1 ~ * 76aeorge Henry Lewes, On Actors and the Art of Acting (London. 1875), PP. 109-112. B

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critic, in dealing with facial expression, was almost sure to notice the manner in which the actor used his eyes. In doing so, he was echoing Porter who felt that the eye was the most important feature of the face, since it was the most instantly responsive . 77 Indeed, most of the elocutionists offered the critic some basis or justification for scrutinizing this aspect of bodily expression. Sheridan noted the power of facial expression, or "looks," to use his term. While Sheridan felt no rules could be laid down for either "looks" or gestures, 7® Austin went so far as to enumerate motions and positions of the head, and the various "looks" of the eyes. 79 In surveying the references which exemplify this detailed emphasis on facial expression, we find that Forrest was said to be "in eye, brilliant and quick; and in general expression of face, pliable and intelligent ." ^ A front page article in the Galaxy , served as even more immediate proof of the importance attached to this aspect of bodily expression. The article, entitled "The Eye," echoed the elocutionist's opinion that the eye was the most expressive feature of the face, that it was the "soul's mirror." For this writer, the major attraction of the actor was principally in the expression of his eyes. What is even more significant from the standpoint of this study is that the writer, quotes "an excellent writer upon elocution" to the effect that "The eye shews the very spirit in a visible form. In every different state 77porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, pp. 155-156. 78sheridan, lectures on Elocution , pp. 1114-153 . 79Austin, Chironomia , pp. 319-351. dimeric an Monthly Magazine . July 1, 1831;, p. 36.

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105 of mind, it assumes a different appearance. Joy bri$itens itj grief adorns it with tears. . . ."®^ To anyone familiar with James Buryi’s v style of describing the various emotions, it is readily apparent that the passage has been quoted verbatim from his text — or at any rate, from one of the many books that included Burgh's "Rules for Expressing with Propriety, the Principal Passions and Humors which Occur in Reading or Public Speaking. The critical comments which followed Pemberton's New York debut provide still another example of the application of this standard of judgment. The critic wrote of him that he had a "fine eye, expressive and flexible features. "®^ Later, on the basis of his belief that "the eye is the speaking organ of the soul," and that in it "we discover, as in a mirror, what passes in the mind," the critic found Pemberton’s strong point to be "intelligence of countenance."®^* The Boston critic who could find very little to praise in Kean's acting, did concede him an "excellent eye, and a face which may be called good — though the features are not remarkably distinct. . . ."85 The actor of early nineteenth-century America was, we must conclude, criticized minutely for the physical endowments he possessed, and for the manner in which he used', or failed to use, them. The critic, 8l New England Galaxy , October 11, 1822, n.p. 82see, for instance, William Scott, Lessons in Elocution (New York, 1802), p. 312. The Table of Contents identifies this section as taken from Burgh. ®3New York Mirror , July 10, 1821;, p. 399. SUlbid., July 17, 1821;, p. 1*07; ® ^New England Galaxy , March 23, 1821, p. 9U.

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106 like the elocutionist, insisted that all bodily activity should be performed with grace, ease, propriety, and elegance. These standards applied to all phases of the actor's character portrayal* the broad movement which made up the stage action, the attitudes which the actor assumed, the gestures he made, and the play of facial expression.

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CHAPTER V PORTRAYAL OF EMOTION AS A FACTOR IN AMERICAN ACTING • an anarchy of the passions . . . struggling to get violent possession of • • . soul and « • • body." — Hazlitt The analysis of the actor's portrayal of emotion as a criterion of acting skill presents a somewhat different problem from an analysis of such criteria as pronunciation, voice, and bodily action. An actor on the American stage during that part of the nineteenth century treated in this study was expected to affect his audience with an exciting display of the emotional content of the drama. This facet of the actor's art presents a broader complex than the factors of "correct pronunciation," "proper vocal usage," and "graceful bodily action." Insofar as the portrayal of emotion is concerned, these latter factors become instrumental techniques and serve as a "means" to accomplish an "end," The critic, then, awarded the palm to the actor who could employ his vocal attributes and bodily movements in such a way as to achieve an emotional effect. The analysis of this more complex element of emotional portrayal requires a sane what different approach from that employed in the foregoing chapters which were devoted to the "tools" of the actor's trade. It necessitates, first, a look at the critic's and elocutionist's views regarding emotion as the end to which the performer should employ his voice and bodily action. Once these are established, it will be 107

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103 possible to consider the importance which both critic and elocutionist attached to the performer’s ability to make a powerful appeal to the emotions of the audience. Criticisms of the period suggest that the critic was familiar with a body of material which standardized, or tended to standardize, emotional portrayal, in terms of outward manifestations of voice and bodily action. Indeed, for half a century or more, portrayal of emotion had been the source of a long-standing argument in discussions of the art of acting. Two diametrically opposed schools of thou^rt grew up as a result of the controversy. Diderot's Le paradoxe sur le comedien (c. 1773) served as the focal point of this controversy in the latter part of the eighteenth century. Diderot's extreme position was that the actor was best when he "imitated" the emotion he sought to portray, not when he felt it.-*The elocutionist's position concerning the problem of emotion bears some resemblance to that of Diderot. Not all the elocutionists treated the subject of emotional portrayal in detail. Those who did, however, listed the various types of emotions and indicated the appropriate vocal and gesture patterns for each, together with rules for applying them. 2 The first, and perhaps the most influential of this group, was James Burgh who believed that "every part of the human frame contributes to the expression of the passions, emotions of the mind, »rvi show its present state. "3 In demonstrating his thesis, Bur$i listed lDenis Diderot, The Paradox of Acting ^ reprinted in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting , p. ll>9. 2Dardel E. Vandraegen, "Thomas Sheridan and the Natural School," SM, XX (1953), 60. 3Burgh, Art of Speaking , p. 13.

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109 seventy-six^ "humors or passions" and explained how each could be expressed through attitudes, looks, gestures, and language. "5 Sheridan also thought the signs of the passions were "tones, looks, and gestures.*^ Sheridan did not describe in detail the emotions and their "signs" as did Bur^i. He did, however, follow the general trend of the elocutionists and suggested that the eyes could portray humility, pride, cruelty, compassion, reflection? and that the hand could demand, promise, call, dismiss, threaten, ask, and deny. 7 He thought that, as every passion had its particular tone, so it also had its peculiar look or gesture.® In some respects, however, the elocutionists* views were nearer to what Vandraegen called the "romantic" tendency of the time than to the position of Diderot. As a result, the body of theory available to the critics also included the belief that emotion, to be properly expressed, must not only be felt strongly by the individual performer, but also expressed spontaneously, and not according to set or accepted pat terns. ^ Sheridan himself thought that no miles could be riven for the tones, looks, and gestures which were to be associated with a given itThe number varies with the scholar counting them. On this point, see W. M. Parrish, "The Burglarizing of Burgh* or the Case of the Purloined Passions," QJS, XXXVIII (December, 1952), h 33, fta. SHaberman, in History of Speech Education , p. llU. ^Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution , p. 130. 7lbid., p. mj. ® Ibid. • ^Vandraegen, "Thomas Sheridan and the Natural School," SM. XX (1953), 60.

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no emotion. ^-0 It is also possible to find some traces of the "romantic" tendency in Walker's views concerning the portrayal of emotion. In spite of his warning that "our natural feelings are not always to be commanded," and his arguments for the "need of the regulation" and the "ability to produce the semblance of them [feelings] when ... not actually impassioned," he stated that "if possible, the expression of every passion ou$vt to commence within. This viewpoint is not too far removed from Murray's statement that defective reading was due to the suppression of "all the various, natural, expressive tones of speech" and the substitution for them of "a few artifical unmeaning reading notes. "^2 While the established concepts concerning the portrayal of emotion were admittedly broad, the elocutionist's position is perhaps, in general, closer to that of Diderot than to that of the emotionalist who thought sensibility a sine que non of the histrionic art. Indeed, even when they recommended spontaneous expression of emotion they added that sore control must be exercised over these "spontaneous" expressions. At least they were to be given some degree of grace and ease through artful modification. It may be that the line which divided the "emotionalists" from the "mechanists" was in reality an extremely tenuous one. As a case in point, it is possible to turn to criticisms of the acting of Edmund Kean who was considered a natural and l°Sher±dan, Lectures on Elocution, pp. 1]*3, 1^3 . ^Walker, Elements of Elocution , pp. 31$-3l6j 310 . 12 Murray, English Reader, p. 12

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Ill spontaneous actor by many critics.^ Yet for all the spontaneity and impulsiveness which critics found in his acting, he himself did not consider his acting "spontaneous or impulsive." He insisted, "All is premeditated and studied beforehand . A Philadelphia critic said Kean left nothing to the inspiration of the moment likewise Lewes noted that he "vigilantly and patiently rehearsed every detail, trying the tones, until his ear was satisfied. In accordance with, or possibly on the basis of, the standardized body of material governing the portrayal of emotion, the critics evidenced a narked concern over how the actor "played" the particular emotion, and the "means" by which he accomplished his effect. Indeed, one critic seems to have felt that it required genuine ability to •portray" an emotion, even beyond the actor's ability to assimilate the actual feeling. For example, he said of Brown's performance of Othello that, although labour and perserveranee could accomplish much, they could not supply the deficiencies of this actor who "may actually feel rapture, [and the J pangs of Jealousy of Othello, but if he cannot make it appear to his audience that he feels, nay make them feel, and sympathize, what is the use of labour?" 17 Tfae basic idea of this critic, that it was important for the actor to make the audience feel the emotion, is 13Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting, pp. 297-298. lU lbid . l^From the Philadelphia National Gazette, in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting, p. 301. l^Lewes, Actors and the Art of Acting , p. 17. 1 7New England Galaxy. October 29, 1819, n.p.

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112 reflected in the elocutionist’s treatment of this phase of the oral arts. 3 The critics of the period went to great lengths to describe how the actor used his voice and body as instruments to achieve the emotional effects considered so essential. For instance, when dealing with the physical aspects of acting in relation to the portrayal of the emotion in Payne’s play Brutus , a New York critic took note of Cooper's "quick eye flashing out his indignation in spite of himself— the majesty of his position, gesture, voice, frequently displacing the fool’s awkwardness— and his whole great spirit unable to brook the insult around— breaking like lightning among the clouds, through the dark disguise in which he would hide its fire. . . ."I 8 The critic went on to sayj ns l fal Hie genius of Mr. Cooper is always powerful and he never fails to do himself honour where there is strong passion tearing the heart, that is too haughty to show its power —where two different emotions are striving for mastery --or where he can wrap himself in lofty meditation, and display the outline of his fine figure in some striking position. But when the feelings become too strong for longer reserve— when passion, like a mighty flood, breaking down all obstacles, will have way, and goes forth in its fury, scorning every opposition— then it is that Mr. Cooper rises to the height of histrionic excellence, and exhibits specimens of acting seldom, if ever, surpassed. 19 j In terms of the preceding criticism, it is clear that the reviewer is interested in the physical ''means" by which the actor depicted emotion. Bodily action, however, was not the only "means" which the critic associated with the portrayal of emotion. A Boston critic. in commenting on Conway's Othello, had occasion to deal with this l8New York Mirror , October 25, 1823, p. 100. 19lbid.

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113 actor’s use of voice as a "means" of exhibiting emotion. He said* r The voice has two distinct keys for the utterance of passion; one, loud, rapid, and boisterous as the howling of the storm; the other low, studied, and deep as the far-off roll of the rising thunder-cloud. . . . The one startles, stirs, and agitates the hearer} excites tumult in his thoughts, and quickens his pulse} the other fixes his feelings in cold and unearthly stillness, checks the course of his blood, and sands it back in fearinless / [ sic 3 to his heart. 20 / This critic further commented* (The great art of the tragedian is to distinguish between I these, and to use them appropriately. This peculiarized (we take the liberty to coin a word,) Mr. Conway's Othello. When Iago succeeds in impressing him with a firm belief of Desdemona's treachery, he exclaims— "I'll tear her all to pieces I" Now a common actor of common discernment would tear his lungs "to pieces" in uttering this, and crack the tympanum of every ear within hailing distance. Not so did Conway} he gave these words in that hollow subdued tone which seems to be striving with passion for utterance succeeding with the greatest difficulty. 21 The theatrical concept of the role of voice in creating passion bears a striking resemblance to the views Sheridan had on the subject. In treating the emotions, Sheridan pointed out that when the proper tone which belonged to an emotion, was employed by the performer, it could awaken the proper emotion in the hearer. He thou pht that the "tones" expressive of such emotions as sorrow, mirth, joy, hatred, love, and pity were the same for all nations and could arouse emotions in the audience even when the words were not understood. 22 The commentaries of the period suggest 2 °New England Galaxy. February 27* 182U* n.p 21 Ibid. 22 Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution, p. 131.

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nil it was not unusual to exercise judgment on this basis. A New York critic, impressed with the many excellencies of Miss Kelly, thou^it she had a "tone of voice for every emotion," and that it could almost be understood even if the words were those of a foreign language. ^3 An adverse criticism of Robertson reflected this same concern over the relationship of tone to given emotions. The critic thought Robertson tortured "the sentiment to his tone, rather than adapt his tone to the sentiment." 21 * Another critic considered the "noises" which Issued from the breast of Edmund Kean "irksome," "painfully hoarse," and "almost inarticulate," but granted the fact that, since there were "feelings and language to which guttural notes, sepulchral sounds, even broken, harsh accents," were appropriate, he excelled in this "oratorical department of his profession." 2 ^ Such a notion may also have originated in Sheridan's treatment of emotion. It was, after all, Sheridan who thought that, when the force of the emotion was extreme, words gave place to inarticulate sounds in rage, shrieks, sighs, and groans. 2 ^ The Boston critic, however, would not concede that Kean's "tones" were deserving of praise, for he could not "believe that the hysterical laugh. or crjr, " (the critic could not decide which but thouffct it more ni«> "barking" than either) was well suited to the expression of passion. 2 ? __ 23Nerw York Mirror, January 29, 1825, p. 215. 2 Weriean Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 207. 2^From the Philadelphia National Gazette, in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting , p. 301. 2 ^Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution , p. 132. 2 7New England Galaxy , February 11, 1821, n.p.

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Sometimes, of course, the critic did not confine himself to describing the emotional portrayal of the actor in terns of one element or the other, but considered both together as the "means” by which the actor appealed to the feelings of the audience* A Philadelphia critic dealing with both vocal and physical aspects of Kean’s display of emotion had occasion to remark that "his limbs have no repose or steadiness in scenes of agitated feeling; his hands are kept in unremitting and the most rapid convulsive movement; seeking • • • a resting place in some part of his upper dress, and occasionally pressed together on the crown of his head*"28 in short, he thought the physical means used by Kean were ineffective. This critic went on to point out that such "quick and irregular," or such "vehement and perturbed," gestures are not always suited to the use he made of them. He also observed that "there is a discipline and temper-ment even for disorder, whether of action or utterance, on the stage. "29 His ultimate position was that there were situations in which the tragedian’s gesticulation could be misplaced and detrimental to his emotional portrayal. The critic wrote i It has been emphatically said that dignity has no aims, especially where there is great force of expression in the eyes and other features. Dejection, lowly grief, profound reflection, tender sentiment, contempt, solemn or malicious menanoe, hauteur, rising passion of what* ever nature, require but a look, a motion of the head, ^®From the Philadelphia National Gazette, in Cole and Chinqy, Actors on Acting, p, 302. 29lbid

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116 The energetic use of the limbs spoils the true and effectual expression.30 •, i When he came to the discussion of Kean's use of voice In the highly emotional scenes, the critic made note of the fact that this actor, in attempting to express intense rage or horror, became almost inarticulate* By this overstraining of the voice, the critic thought Kean rendered himself "contemptible," as do all those whose physical powers fail at the height of "infuriate passion." The vocal insufficiency which prevented Kean from reaching the desired peak of ' f * his emotional conception led him, in the reviewer's estimation, to attempt to compensate through more violent actions and thus transgress even further the boundaries of propriety George Henry Lewes, who had seen Kean act in 1832, sums up very well the relation between the vocal and physical means for depicting emotion as employed by Kean. Lewes thought that, even after gout "made it difficult for him to display his accustomed grace, when a darunken hoarseness had ruined his once matchless voice, such was the irresistible pathos— manly, not fearful, which vibrated in his tones and expressed itself in look and gestures , that old men leaned their heads upon their arms and fairly sobbed. "32 Lewes went on to say that Kean had little power of elocution except when sustained by a strong emotion. It was Lewes who gave Kean the tag of "master of the subsiding emotion," although this feature of Kean's acting had been noted by others* He said, "* • * in watching Kean's quivering muscles and altered tones you felt the subsidence of passion. 30lbid* 3Ubid. 32Lawes, Actors and the Art of Acting, p. 16.

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r 117 The voice might be calm, but there were vanishing traces of recent agitation. "33 The theatrical critic, in addition to following the elocutionist te lead in identifying the physical and vocal means, as they were used, either separately or in combination with each other, to achieve emotional expression, further insisted that the actor exercise care in choosing the most appropriate vocal and physical patterns by which to make his emotional appeal* The critic, reviewing Forrest's version of the dream sequence in Richard III , gave the actor unstinted praise for his use of voice, facial expression, and gesture in evoking the emotional impact of the scene. He described it as follows: The horrour inspired by his dream caused him to drop prostrate on his face. The expression on his countenance, as the vision seems gradually to be dispelled, and with a half bewildered look he utters, "Soft, I did hut dream, " the visible workings of his conscience, his lastly look and trembling limbs, in the succeeding part of the soliloquy, and the startled, terrified manner in which he exclaims, "Who's there?" when Ratcliffe suddenly enters, all were executed with such ability and genius as raised the admiration of the audience to the highest pitch.34 As a result of this concern for the appropriateness of the "means" used to produce emotion, the critic of the period was quick to censure the actor whose physical and vocal patterns failed to produce the emotion intended. One critic, for example, thought Conway's attempt to suggest strong emotion by flinging back his head and shoulders, and bending his knees as if to bring himself on a level with those around him did not achieve its purpose .3$ Another instance of the critic's displeasure 33 ibid., p. 19. 3l jCritic , November 15, 1828, p. 47. 35New York Mirror. April 17, 1824, p. 303.

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118 over an actor's failure to employ the proper means for his emotional effects is to be found in a Galaxy criticism of the actor Maywood. \ In this case, it was felt that the actor "did not give himself time to embody in his look, gesture, or speech, the passion which he intended to express. "3 6 The critic of the period tended to think of emotion in terms of distinct categories, each with its appropriate "signs.” The extent to which this tendency was carried out in actual reviews was illustrated by one critic who identified "five grades of feeling" from the appropriate means a Miss Clifton used to portray them. 3 7 From such criticisms we may infer that the theatrical critic tended to think of emotional portrayal in much the same way as the elocutionist didj that is, in terms of suiting the proper tone, look, or gesture to the particular emotion. The criticisms examined thus far in this consideration of emotional expression may invite the belief that the critics and audience of the period were interested in emotion for emotion's sake. It may appear, also, that their insistence upon the proper vocal and physical means of demonstrating emotion is proof of an admiration for a type of acting which is commonly classified as bombastic , or even ranting . It is time that a little rant or bombast was not looked upon with entire disfavor at this time. Indeed, some felt there were moments in which it was highly proper. A case in point can be found in a critic's remark concerning Charles Kean's acting style. The critic thought that, because 3 %ew England Galaxy , February 26, 1819, n.p. 37New York Mirror , September 9, 1837, p. 88.

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119 Kean was normally a "quiet" actor, his sudden violent scenes showed the better by contrast. Furthermore , Kean was praised because he avoided ranting when he could do so without violating the intention of the text .38 Nevertheless, "tearing a passion to tatters," although it might be considered perfectly adapted to some passages, if carried too far, was sure to be censured by the critic. Mr. Pritchard, for instance, was criticized, not for ranting, but for ranting unnecessarily, in the role of Hotspur, and for indulging in "too much passion, too much heat," and for missing the "coolness of deliberate villainy" in another role. 39 Forrest was not exempt from this sort of criticism. One critic maintained that he betrayed "more emotion than comports with consistency of Othello's character."^ Mrs. Wallstein was berated in like manner by a critic who thought she overacted in Romeo and Juliet . In his words, she suggested "howlings at an Irish wake, rather than the grief of an affectionate nurse. ^1 It appears, then, the period produced actors who, many times, "o'erstepped the modesty of nature" when playing intense emotional scenes. It also appears probable, however, there were some actors who could handle extreme or violent passions, and handle them powerfully, without bringing down such epithets as bombastic and ranting . The critic of the American Monthly, for example, thought Forrest could powerfully dilineate the finest characters of Shakespeare, because he 38New York Mirror , September 10, 1831 , p. 78 . 3 9American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], November, 1817, pp. 60-61. kQNew York Mirror , May 3 , 1828, p. 339 . UlNew York Mirror , August 28, 1821;, p. 39.

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120 could give "full effect to the passion to be expressed," and at the sane time do so with the necessary dignity and propriety.^ From the amount of attention which the critic bestowed on the actor's portrayal of emotion, and his frequent analysis of the manner in which the actor used his voice and body for this purpose, it would appear that a performer’s ability to affect the feelinrs of an audience became a major criterion— perhaps even the major criterion for judging the excellence of acting. Certainly both critic and elocutionist considered this ability not only important, but as absolutely necessary. In fact, an idea prevalent at the time was that there was a "language of emotions and passions, as well as of ideas. "1*3 Enfield, a proponent of this viewpoint, went on to say that no one could be a good speaker until he was able to add to "distinct articulation, a good command of voice, and just emphasis, the various expressions of emotion and passion. "W* Significantly, he was not alone in this belief. Hurray, and many of the other elocutionists, believed that the public speaker's object was twofold: "not merely to lay open the ideas, but also the different feelings which they excite in him who utters them. • . ,"U5 Porter, in turn, noted the necessity for the speaker to develop his ability to play upon the emotions of his audience. r Be it remembered, that all directions as to the management of the voice, must be regarded as subsidiary to the expression of feeling , or they are worse than useless. "Emotion ^American Monthly Magazine , January 1, 103li, n.p. ^Enfield, The Speaker, p. 13. itoid. ^Murray, The English Reader, p. 11.

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121 is the thing. One flash of passion on the cheeky one beam of feeling from the eye, one thrilling note of sensibility from the tongue, — have a thousand times more value than exemplification of mere rules, where feeling is absent. "^6 Porter even went so far as to say, ,! The parts of external oratory, as voice, look, and posture, are only Instruments by which the soul acts; — when the inspiration of the soul is absent, these instruments Just as the elocutionist emphasized the importance of emotional expression in the oral arts, the theatrical critic gave this element prime import arc 3 in the histrionic art. Critic "E" of the American Monthly went so far as to imply that the actor might be forgiven for other inadequacies if he managed to rise to great emotional heights in an audience was felt to be so powerful that it was credited with beneficial results beyond the mere stimulation of the moment. It was believed emotional portrayal, when powerful enough in its appeal and directed to ends which were salutary, could provide "lessons” for the young to follow. The Galaxy critic thought Cooper provided such an example in his portrayal of Vireinius, where he exhibited "a specimen of the terribly sublime" in the strangling of Appius. "His 'face was a book,'" the critic thought, "wherein one might read -thoughts too awful for U6porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, p. 18. U 7lbid . , p. 19. ^American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], July, 1817, p. 209. cannot produce eloquence. "^7 the climactic scenes. ^8 The effect which emotional portrayal had upon

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122 utterance — it was a picture which a painter might study who would catch the features in that dreadful moment when the Almi$ity destroys the free agency of man, to make him the innocent and unconscious instrument of vengeance and retribution."^ An even stronger indication of this tendency to equate great emotional portrayal with moral lessons can be found in an 1825 issue of the New Toxic Mirror . On this occasion the critic wrote* "It is cm the stage that. ... the ungovernable passions of man are represented in their highest import, and in their most dreadful consequences, as a lesson to the rising youth of our country."^ 0 In the final analysis, powerful emotion coupled with a moral purpose must have made an irresistible appeal to the playgoer of the period. One Boston critic summed up the matter in a reference to Mrs. Henry’s performance of Monimiat ". . .if anything could persuade us to be present at a repetition of the Orphan, it would be a desire to experience once more the emotions excited by her delineation of truth and innocence in distress. "51 But the importance which the theatrical critic attached to the factor of emotion in the actor’s aid; is shown in still other ways. In this respect, it was deemed important by virtue of the extent to which it could move the audience when employed properly by a skilled actor. It could, therefore, serve as a vital measure of the actor’s proficiency in his art. One of the most vivid descriptions of the power this kind k ^Now England Galaxy , December 8, 1820, p. £%ew Xork Mirror, October 35* 1825, P» 93* 5> lNew England Galaxy , March 26, 182I*, n.p

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123 of emotional portrayal could wield is to be found in the Mirror review of Damon and Pythias which contended that Cooper "out-Coopered Cooper. The critic, describing the effect of Cooper’s emotional portrayal, observed the audience was "suspended in breathless expectation" like the anxious spectators at Syracuse. He singled out the execution scene for special attention. He described the manner in which Damon entered exhausted and fell senseless at the foot of the scaffold, and how Pythias darted from the platform to restore his friend to consciousness, only to have him faint again. The critic noted that, while the effect was "electric," it was surpassed when the disguised Dionysius asked, "Where is Damon?" At this point, we are told, Damon vaulted "like lightning upon the scaffold, [presumably from the position of a faint 3 and in an attitude that might have awed the gods," exclaimed," "’Here, upon my throne!’" The critic thougrt language inadequate to describe the various passions expressed at this moment j "conscious magnanimity,-detestation of the tyrant— affection for his friend— contempt of death— triumph of virtue— all these seemed to strive together for mastery in the expressive countenance of Cooper. "£3 The fact that the critic could isolate and identify the various emotions pictured on Cooper's face bears out the contention they were expressed through the more or less conventionalized patterns of physical expression of the kind which Burgh had described, and which had come to be assof dated with them in the actor’s and orator's delivery. 52New York Mirror , August 2, 1823, pp. 5>U-5>5 £3 Ibid.

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121 * To a certain extent, the actor’s ability to affect an audience became a basis for comparing one actor with another. It was patently so in the case of one New York critic who, in writing of the elder Booth's portrayal of Sir Giles Overreach, said: We have felt some exquisitely tender tone of Kean’s voice go straight to the heart— we have wept over the pathos of Conway, and warmly admired the classic elegance of his style, and the nobleness of his princely figure — and we have started at the impressive vehemence of Cooper's anger— but we solemnly declare, that no acting ever made an impression on us— more completely wrou^it up our feelings, and made our blood curdle with horror, than the Sir Giles Overreach of Mr. Booth. The critic went on to list the means by which Booth secured these emotional effects: "a clear unclouded forehead, — eyebrows regularly arched— a Grecian nose, lips well formed and calculated to express the feelings— large dark eyes . . . present a countenance formed to display the most delicate shades of passion. "55 The manner in which actors portrayed emotion, or their skill in portraying certain types of emotion also became involved in this type of comparison. Speaking of Barry and Woodhull, a reviewer characterized the latter as "like a flint" which "must be struck sharply before he emits a spaik," and the former as like a rocket, "off in a blaze at the slightest touch. "56 Another critic drew the difference between Charles Kemble and his daughter, Fanny, who often appeared with him, as one involving the kind of emotion which each best portrayed. Charles Kemble %bid., April 3, 1821* , p. 286. 55lbid. 56ibjd., July 18, 1829, p. 13.

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12 $ was said to be "unequalled in the delineations of passions and feelings, as they arise in the breast of a gentleman, tempered by a sense of honor* . . ."57 Kemble's daughter was thought to be "the first actress of the English world in pathetic tragedy and sentimental comedy. The same critic comparing Forrest, Placide, and Kemble used their manner of portraying emotion as the factor determining their differences j Forrest was said to be "an actor of passion undisguised, and unchecked by the artificialities and restraints of civilization— of the sudden sympathies, and fierce outbreakings of anger in the savage," and as great as Kemble in the opposite linej whereas Placide was able to encompass roles requiring delineation of different kinds of emotion, 5? In the period from 1815 to 18U0 the theatrical critic in America gave much of his attention to the manner in which the actor portrayed emotion. Like the elocutionist, the critic analyzed the performer's treatment of emotion in terms of what he did with his voice and body. In this, he appeared to believe, as the elocutionist did, that tones, even inarticulate or animal-like ones, could at times become a sign of emotion and used to affect an audience accordingly. The critic also agreed with the elocutionist that various bodily attitudes, gestures, and facial expressions were associated with the various emotions, and the critic appeared, at any rate, to be able to "read" the ^ American Monthly Magazine. March 1, 1833, p« 6U. ffirbld . 5?Ibid.

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various emotions throu$i the tones, looks and gestures the actor associated with them. Finally the critic, like the elocutionist, placed great importance on an actor's ability to affect the feelings of an audience and, at times, used it as a basis for comparing one actor with another.

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CHAPTER VI FIDELITY TO NATURE IN AMERICAN ACTING "Those rules of old discovered, not devised. Are nature still, but nature methodized." —Pope One inport ant criterion which the theatrical critic used to ;Judge the actor on the American stage during the years l8l£-l8UO, was the degree to which the performer achieved a "fidelity to nature." Inasmuch as the critic gave considerable attention to this element of acting technique, it is necessary to treat the problem of "nature" along with pronunciation, voice, bodily action, and emotion, and to attempt to analyze it in terns of the prevailing patterns of communication to which this study is devoted. In a sense, this particular factor of the actor's technique may be thought of as the culmination of all the other factor, the one quality to which all the other elements contributed. In the discussion of emotion, we found that the factors of vocal and bodily techniques were considered, to sane extent, as the means through which the actor made his emotional appeal. In like manner, the vocal and physical elements with the added factor of emotion were recognized as the "means" by which the actor achieved a "fidelity to nature." The analysis of the role of "nature" is complicated by the interrelationship of all these factors. 127

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128 The problem of attempting to determine what the actor did to win for himself the accolade of "natural” is one which presents peculiar difficulties. From the descriptions of the acting examined thus far, it is obvious that, if such acting were indeed considered "natural," then the term "natural acting" bore a far different significance from that which we give it today. Students of the theatre are aware, however, that the acting of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries was called "natural," a fact which has been one source of the controversy over acting styles of great players of the past. Darlington, in his study of the Actor and His Audience , focuses attention on the problem and demonstrates the necessity for attempting to determine what "natural" acting was like in a given period. He makes reference to the fact that practically all accounts of Garrick's acting stress his naturalness, but these records of his performances also raise the question of what the term meant to those who employed it thus. Certainly it does not refer to the sort of "naturalness" the modern actor cultivates. Darlington concluded that Garrick's acting would probably be considered "dreadfully theatrical" by present-day standards. ^ On the other hand, Sarah Siddons, a follower of the so-called "classic" school of the Kembles, who has been described as an actress of great "correctitude and contrivance," considered herself a "creature of inpulse" on the stage. It must be remembered, also, that while Kean's style was said to depend on impulse and inspiration, he insisted all his movements were "precisely calculated p. 60, lw. A. Darlington, The Actor and His Audience (London, 19U9),

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129 beforehand.” ^ Such seemingly wide discrepancies make it obvious that an attempt must be made to define what was meant by the terms, "nature,” "fidelity to nature," or "following nature," as employed in America * during the period surveyed in this study. In arriving at this definition, and in determining the constituents of, "natural acting," it is necessary to look, first at the term as it was employed by the elocutionists to describe the standard patterns prevailing in the communicative arts. It will then be possible to look for reflections of this point of view in the theatrical criticisms. Having established the similarity of outlook by the critic and elocutionist, we shall turn to the problem of ascertaining how pronunciation, voice, bodily action, and emotion contributed to the actor's achievement of a natural effect in his acting. Finally, it will be necessary to examine the theatrical criticism which compares and contrasts "natural" with "artificial" acting in order to understand the terms as they were used in this period. Since the time of Aristotle it has been taken for granted that naturalness in speech, whether it is that of the orator, oral reader, or actor, was a virtue. While naturalness has been held up as a criterion by which to judge the excellence of these performers, the " indications of this assumption are seldom examined critically . "3 The further observation mi^ht be added that the concept of naturalness is all too often * * considered apart from its significance in a given period. So far as his 2 Ibid„ p. 112. 3W. M. Parrish, "The Concept of 'Naturalness,'" QJS, XXXVII (December, 1951) , Ui8.

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130 acting is concerned, once an actor has been called "natural" the label remains, often even in periods when the concept is something quite different from that of its earlier usage. Succeeding generations have looked back to Garrick and other great "natural" actors without stopping to consider that the factors which caused the actor to receive this designation may have little reference to the elements of acting which would be included under that label today. In attempting to determine what naturalness in delivery actually meant in the period under review, the writings of the elocutionists will serve as a guide. The purpose of the elocutionists was to observe and record "certain phenomena of voice, body, and language," and from these / observations to devise principles which would guide the public speaker, reader, or actor in achieving a natural delivery. The elocutionist conceived of man as controlled by natural law, and he could therefore confidently claim that the rules or precepts which he discovered were "nature still, but nature methodized." In general, the phrase "follow nature" meant applying rules which were conceived to be universal laws.** It is not necessary here to enter the controversy as to whether the elocutionists of this period were, in reality, "mechanists" or "naturalists." By the same token, it is not essential that they be divided into two schools,
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131 application of rules to achieve a "natural" effect, or for the imitation of real-life models. Vandrae gen's study of the elocutionists sheds a good deal of light on the subject of naturalness as we are trying to define it here. He views the two so-called "schools" of elocutionists as representative of "two manifestations of the human spirit in the eighteenth century"! the first, or neoclassical, was devoted to the expression of what was typical or customary in nature and human experience, based on patterns of common acceptance, and on the following of proved models; and a second, or "romantic," was dedicated to "performing spontaneously and sincerely out of the fullness and force of heartfelt emotion, expressing what was unique or personal in hun®n nature and human experience . "5 The general position of the elocutionist in this period, then, would appear to be that he considered naturalness a virtue in delivery, and that the way to obtain it was by following certain universal rules or laws which would give him the appearance of naturalness. While some elocutionists advocated a more "romantic" approach through a more direct and spontaneous imitation of nature, most of them, sooner or later, had recourse to rules which would refine the crude product of nature and give it grace. The theatrical critic of the period considered here gave his assent to these views of the elocutionist. For instance, one critic, reviewing the acting of Hamblin and comparing him with Forrest and Booth, prefaced his remarks with some comments about acting in general. "Rules may and should guide the actor," he said, "but they cannot form ^Daniel E. Vandraegen, "Thomas Sheridan and the Natural School," SM, XX (1953), 58.

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132 him. His principal study should be NatureÂ’s broad infallible volume, by which test he should examine every habit, from which he should derive every precept j to which he should refer every suggestion."^ Although this critic pays proper tribute to the god of nature, he nevertheless is aware of the means the actor employed to achieve naturalness. With respect to these means, the critic thought Hamblin the equal of Forrest in grace of movement, and superior to Booth. In terms of energetic emotional portrayal, however, Hamblin was said to be inferior to both Booth and Forrest. These comparisons suggest the critic was thinking of the actorÂ’s ability to appear natural, as the elocutionist generally did, through the proper employment of the physical and emotional means at his command. He found, for instance, Hamblin's defects consisted of a lack of expression in his eyes which sent forth "no lightning emanations from the soul, and an "inflexibility of countenance" which did not allow emotions to be displayed in the lines of his face. But among his good points, the critic noted that his "passion is natural, gestures easy and dignified except in the whirlwind of passion when he is apt to fling his arms about wildly) his attitudes appropriate and graceful except that he sometimes starts into them too vehemently. "7 It may be the label "natural" was assigned to that which appeared to have a natural emotional effect, or which was done with a measure of ease that made it seem natural. One critic, speaking of a Mr. Williams said, Critic , April 18, 1828, p. 386 . 7lbid.

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133 Khen an actor can summon the tear fresh from the heart, bid it glisten in your eye a moment, and then chase it away by the radiant sunshine of a smile, we think him a master of his profession— we think he studies nature, and not art— and these are the criterions by which we judge of histrionic excellence.® L Another critic took into consideration the elocutionary precepts of ease and smoothness and equated these with naturalness, noting how many "mistake what is new for what is beautiful, and overlook the most perfect exhibition of art because its very perfection prevents the art from being seen."? Hie old precept of are est eelare artem. whether in its Latin original or in English translation, was quoted often by both critic and elocutionist. John Bernard, who had spent some years as an actor in the United States, wrote what is probably the best working definition of nature from the actor’s point of view. He said* Perfection of the actor's skill is not . . . to make Art appear Nature} it is s cane thing more,— it is to make Nature appear Nature. It is to cause the nature which bums in his own boson, to correspond with that in the spectator's, by raising that latter up to the level of his own hi$i excitement, and to open to the general sympathies of a crowd the confined and peculiar feelings of the poet .10 Turning now from the general agreement which exists between the viewpoints of the elocutionist and those of the theatrical critics of the period, let us inquire into the connection between the problem of naturalness and the criteria previously established by this study. It is not to be expected, of course, that there will be criticisms which are devoted to the "naturalness" or "unnaturalness" of an actor's ®New York Mirror . January 15, 1825, p. 199. 9lbid ., October 15, 1831, p. 115. l°John Bernard, Retrospections of the Stage (2 vols.| London, 1830), I, 136.

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pronunciations of words. There are, however, some factors which call for a brief consideration of naturalness in relation to the pronunciations of words. Cockin, in his Art of Delivering Written Language, drew the difference between two kinds of arts* those which imitated nature, and those which improved nature. Such arts as painting and sculpture, he thought, belonged to the former, while the art of speaking came under the latter. Cockin was of the opinion that an artist was always Justified in "heightening one characteristic of form" if he did not exaggerate it. An actor might heighten, for instance, the natural reaction to a given emotion if he did not distort it. He took the position that the heightening of natural characteristics was to be approved in every art, and that it served to Justify an actor who chose to make an unusual delay on an unaccented syllable in theatrical declamation. This pronouncing of words with undue attention to normally unstressed syllables may have had some effect on the rhythm of the actorÂ’s speaking, and may have called down such objections as that of one critic to the "ti-tum-ti mode of reading which most actors are so fond of."^ At any rate, a Philadelphia critic thought KeanÂ’s manner of inserting pauses between the syllables of words made for "fanciful reading" which created a "wild havoc of their [the poetÂ’s] lines," rather than the natural effects which this actor was said to provide. ^-3 In her study of the influence of the elocutionists on pronunciation. Harder pointed William Cockin, The Art of Delivering Written Language (London, 1775)* p. HO. 12New York Mirror , August 26, 1826, p. 39* 13From the Philadelphia National Gazette, in Cole and Chinoy Actors on Acting , p. 303.

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135 out that pronunciations probably varied: that during passages of natural conversation pronunciations conformed very much to that which was customarily used by the audience; but in the more "sonorous lines of poetry,” pronunciation must have become more "artificial" as the actor launched forth into a more formal declamatory style.^* It is probable that the manner in which the actor pronounced his words may have had some bearing on judgments regarding the actor's naturalness, or the lack of it, but not much attention was given to it by the critics. Both critic and elocutionist, however, gave a great deal of attention to the relationship between the factor of voice and the matter of naturalness. Some elocutionists recommended the patterns of conversational speech as the normal pattern for the public speaker to follow. At the same time, the speaker was generally advised to heighten and emphasize these patterns of conversational speech in order to give the appearance of naturalness from the platform. Enfield, for instance said that to "follow Nature is the fundamental law of Oratory, without a regard to which, all other rules, will only produce affected declamation, not just elocution." Nevertheless, he was careful to point out that it was necessary to "discover and correct those tones and habits of speaking which are gross deviations from nature" and which spoil the "propriety and grace of utterance." 1 ^ Caleb Bingham subscribed Hoarder, "Influence of the Teaching of Elocution," p. 21, l5sheridan, Lectures on Elocution , pp. 19-20} see also Porter Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, p. I46." l^Enfleld, The Speaker, p. 6,

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136 to the same general vocal precept in his Columbian Orator when he wrote that "it is the orator’s business to follow nature and endeavor that the tone of voice appear natural and unaffected." 1 ? It is important to note the word "appear" occurs over and over in the works of the elocutionists, and it is evident that what they sought in all their prescriptions for naturalness was the appearance of naturalness in the performer's delivery. But what appeared to be natural in the acting of the period may have been only what was conventional. Murdoch, for example, noted, although every new star to emerge on the stage was "supposed to have received a special revelation from Nature," every actor, even if he had a natural voice to begin with, felt it must "be permeated with the flavor of the stage," which he acquired by copying the "manners of voice in vogue." 1 ® This was apparently not true of Forrest when he made his debut on the New York stage. The critic, on that occasion, thought he perceived in the young man "something more than a mere student of elocution, servilely copying some favourite star of the day. . . ."19 "It is evident," the critic went on, "that he looks to nature for his models, and to his own genius for instruction. . . ."20 The critic further reported that Forrest aimed "at a proper medium between the familiar and declamatory tone," but even so it was felt he needed "polish." Finally, Forrest was urged 17Caleb Bingham, The Columbian Orator (5th Troy ed.j Troy, 1811), p. Uw l8Murdoch, The Stage , p. U5. l?New York Mirror , July 1, 1826, p. 391. 20 Ibid.

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137 to perservare in his present plan, for almost anything was preferable to the "drawling cant of the old school." 2 ^ Such a criticism suggests that there may have been a movement in the direction of a more conversational mode of speaking as the elocutionists had recommended. Nevertheless, it was felt that a completely conversational manner was not altogether in keeping with the rank, dignity, position, or situation of some characters. A Boston cxitie, for example, considered KeanÂ’s colloquial mode of speaking was not suited to the dignity of the characters he portrayed. 22 But the critic did record his admiration for KeanÂ’s "unconstrained air and manner, " however, and stated his hope that the actorÂ’s example would "banish from the stage the miserable formality which has so long usurped it." 2 3 It appears the actorelocutionist, George Vandenhoff, also detected some measure of the desired naturalness in the acting of Kean. He described it by saying. He hurried you on through a catalogue of AntonioÂ’s atrocities and unproved injuries to him, enforcing them with a strong accentuation, and a high pitch of voicej and when he had reached the climax, he came down by a sudden transition to a gentle suffering tone of simple representation of his oppressor's manifest unreasons and injustice, in the wordst "I am a Jewl" and the effect was instantaneous. 2 ^ In spite of all the commendation of the natural manner in speaking, it is clear that speaking which departed too far from the declamatory, or ranting, styles was not yet universally acceptable. One example of this reservation can be found in a New York critic's comment 21lbid. 2 2 New England Galaxy, February 23, 1821, p. 78. 2 3lbid. 2iiDarlington, Actor and His Audience, pp. 111-112.

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138 on Charles Kean's Hamlet. It noted there was "no noisy ranting— no trick — no aiming at effect— everything was easy, chaste, and natural. This we consider the highest praise. "^5 The fact the critic had to make clear that the substitution of a natural, easy manner of speaking for ranting and calculated effects was a matter for praise makes its own statement of the degree to which a natural manner of speaking was accepted. Indeed, it may well have been that such characteristics as "ease," "chasteness," and "quietness," in an actor's speaking style were not always thought of as the "natural" manner. The elder Booth, in one instance was lauded for his ability to depict a scene with "reality" on the basis of a performance that was far from "chaste" or "quiet." Hie critic reported: The tone of diabolical energy which in the last act pervades every speech and action of Sir Giles, and his appalling bursts of passion which swell into raving delirium, and leave him at length powerless and senseless, were all depicted by Mr. Booth in a manner which almost drove from our minds the idea of acting, and made the scene appear like reality.26 In Boston, the Galaxy critic emphasised the characteristics of Cooper's natural manner of speaking by describing, first of all, what he considered to be an unnatural manner of speaking. He began by asking if it was "nature to speak after the fashionable style" which he described as one "with inflated cheeks, muscles distorted from their ordinary movements; and words measured out like the notes of music, in quick or common time, as the case may be, and the divisions marked by a 'windy 25>New York Mirror, September 25, 1830, p. 91*. 2 6lbid . , November 11, 1826, p. 127

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139 suspiration of forced breath* loud enough to be heard in the remotest corner or crack of the theatre. This, he pointed out, was not the manner in which Cooper spoke j for his was a "Just, energetic, and easy elocution" which would always "render him a favourite with those who are pleased with the representations of nature and the language of the soul. "^8 Such criticisms as these seem to point to the fact that the actor of the time employed the various factors of his voice to produce two styles of speaking: first, a declamatory style, at times, bordering on rant and bombast j second, a more colloquial or familiar style. The former was an "elevated" or "heightened" sort of speaking style which was considered proper to the dignity of the character, the style of the language, or the situation. The latter was employed in passages which did not demand the exhibition of fiery passion or elevated sentiment. Some actors, such as Edmund Kean, must have made rapid transitions from one to the other. So far as the label of naturalness is concerned, both these styles appeared to be considered natural. In some cases, the determining factor seemed to be whether the manner of speaking suited the character, his position, and his situation. Bodily action, too, came in for its share of consideration in the process of establishing whether the actor appeared natural in the delineation of character. Here again the elocutionist's standards were, in all likelihood, those commonly accepted by the critics and performers of the time. Walker thought that gesture was the "language of nature" 2 ?New England Galaxy , December 1*, l8l8, n.p. 28jbid.

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lUo and, as such, made "its way to the heart, without the utterance of a sound. " 2 9 Nevertheless, he made it clear that "the common feelings of nature, with the signs that express them undergo a kind of modification," and must not be allowed to come from chance, or to be based on inspiration. 3° His directions for achieving natural and suitable action were as follows: When anything sublime, lofty, or heavenly is expressed, the eye and the right hand may be very properly elevatedj and when anything low, inferiour, or grovelling is referred to, the eye and hand may be directed downwards: when anything distant or extensive is mentioned, the hand may naturally describe the distance or extent. 31 jse gestures are, obviously, those which had been conventional or customary with speakers for a long time. Like Walker’s, Porter’s rules for gesture were based solidly in custom, although he thought "the power of action" consisted wholly in its correspondence with thought and emotion, a correspondence which had its roots in either nature or custom .3 2 Some of his rules, such as that restricting the use of the left hand in gesturing, recalled Quintilian) others involved such conventional items as: The hand, raised and inverted, repels . » . placed on the mouth, silence) on the head, pain) on the breast. •"ill' affection. [When an actor employed these conventionalized gestures gracefully and easily, it is probable that he was given the stamp of "natural" by critic and spectators of the day. A case in point is a 29Walker, Elements of Elocution , p. 301. 30lbid., p. 302 . 31lbid., pp. 303-3OU. 32porter, Analysis of Rhetorical Delivery, p. 11*6. 33ibid. , pp. m?-l$0.

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U|1review of Vandenhof f ' s playing of Richelieu in New York in 181*0, The critic listed among his many ''natural" qualities "the exquisite ease with which he gave the necessary direction to those around hi®, the well -affected stoop, the inquisitive side-glance, and the indomitable pride and unrelenting sternness of purpose which were stamped on his every feature." In fact, the critic thought these bodily actions (which bear a marked similarity to wholly conventional ones) demonstrated "a greater variety of traits and exquisite adaptations to nature, and all her laws, than anything almost that ever was witnessed on the American stage. "3U in somewhat similar fashion a critic said of Fanny Kemble that "it is with her face that she acts the most," While such a statement might lead us to think that her acting was characterized by a kind of grimacing, it may be well to note the critic went on to comment that "her attitudes were faultless. . . . her confessions, sweetly reluctant, the earnestness especially, . . . made the scene like nature. "35 But, while factors of attitude, gesticulation, and facial expression could be employed in a more or less conventional manner and still be thought natural, it was also true that the actor might carry this tendency too far and leave himself open to the censure of the critic. The Galaxy critic, although commending Booth for his naturalness felt it necessary to point out some "unnatural" elements in his action, such as "too much muscular exertion — something more than natural— in the business immediately following the dream [in Richard 3%ew York Mirror , January 18, 181*0, p. 238, 35 Ibid . , September 29, 1832, p. 102,

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III]. "36 The reviewer considered "such extravagant expression of fear out of place in a serious representation. "37 He also reported that Booth was unnatural in his playing of Richard's death scene. "for he lay down as carefully as if he were Lord Grizzle rather than Richard and wanted only the night -cap and snuff-box to complete the parallel. "3® Another facet of the concept of naturalness was revealed by a with Miss Barnes's playing because she was always engaged in the business of the scene — "no prying curiosity to observe effects of her acting on the audience — no unnecessary adjusting of her dress— no whispering to those on stage. "3 9 The writer hoped that "her strict adherence From this comment, we may infer that actors of the period frequently "dropped out of character" when not speaking, and filled in their interims of silence with wholly extraneous and unnatural movements. It is no wonder, then, that an actor who was constantly engaged in maintaining his character, even though in doing so he may have been employing more or less conventionalized movements, would be thought natural. Fran the reviews examined in regard to naturalness in the employment of bodily action, and from the seeming similarity of the standards of the critics and the elocutionists, it would appear during 3 %ew England Galaxy, May 10, 1822, n.p. to character [would] be adopted 37lbid. 3 8lbid . 39New York Mirror , April 26, 183k, p. 338. UOibid.

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this period several conditions warranted the use of the tern "natural." An actor would be labeled as "natural" if he employed attitudes, postures, facial expressions, and all the other facets of bodily action with ease and grace. Furthermore, the designation of natural might be given for using these elements with a sense of their appropriateness to the character portrayed, to the situation depicted, and to the kind of language the actor was given to speak. In addition to their agreement that such elements as voice and bodily action be natural, both critic and elocutionist agreed that a performer's expression of emotion should also show a fidelity to nature. Burgh, whose Art of Speaking catalogued the "principal passions, humors, sentiments, and intentions," and described the manner in which he thought nature expressed them, believed that "nature had given to evexy emotion its outward expression. "kl Like the other elocutionists, and like most of the theatrical critics of the period, he felt that "nature unassisted" was not the complete answer but that, in the final analysis, art was "but nature improved upon and refined. "^2 Walker also thought that "our natural feelings are not always commanded; and, when they are, stand in need of the regulation and embellishments of art. "^3 »lt is the business, therefore," he said, "of evexy reader and speaker in public, to acquire such tones and gestures as nature gives to the passions; that he may be able to produce the semblance of them when he is klBurgfr, Art of Speaking, p. 12. U 2ibid . , p. 6. k3Walker, Elements of Elocution, p. 310.

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not actually impassioned."^* Such a remark reflects the opinion of Sarah Siddons who had observed "that those who act mechanically are sure to be in some sort right* while we who trust to nature— if we do not happen to be in the humour . . . -are as dull as anything can be imagined, because we cannot feign. "^5 Enfield, although he did not ignore a need for rules, recommended the performer learn "to observe the various ways by which nature expresses the several perceptions, emotions and passions of the human mind, and to distinguish these from the mere effects of arbitrary custom or false taste. Murdoch, in considering the problem of how the actor was to demonstrate emotions that were natural, observed that the actor frequently erred because, since he was not tearing a passion to tatters, he imagined he was following nature J*7 These views of the elocutionists regarding the natural portrayal of emotion were widely reflected in the theatrical criticism of the time. The Mirror critic, commenting on a Conway performance, said: He modulates his voice to the soft sweetness necessary for the delineation of the far-famed passion — and his manner breathes all the languid luxury of the lover's mind. A thousand little actions whereby the abundance of feeling is expressed, are represented by this faithful imitator of nature— who by close attention seems to have observed all the peculiarities of passion, of the angry or pathetic —of emotion suppressed, or sweeping through the distracted mind without r@straint.h8 Ul ilbid . ^Quoted from a letter written by Sarah Siddons, in Darlington, Actor and His Audience, p. 82, ^Enfield, The Speaker , pp. 5-6. U7Murdoch, The Stage , pp. 30-31. U8New York Mirror, September 17, 1825* p. 59

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A Boston critic also thought that Conway embodied passion in a powerful manner, a quality he acquired through "his intimate acquaintance with nature. "^9 Another writer noted that Conway's delivery of Jaffier's oath in which he swears to revenge Belvidera's woes "was not declamation— it was not rant— it was the natural voice of passion. "5° Not all criticisms pointed to the natural manner in which the actor portrayed his role. Sometimes the critic noted the manner in which the actor portrayed emotion "unnaturally." An instance in point is a review concerning Wallack, whose great deficiency was thought to be a "want of feeling." Among the other defects noted in this review were such things as his obvious "efforts to keep his voice in proper modulation," his walking "by rule," and the fact that his excellence was solely "the excellence of mechanism, not the simple and powerful beauty of nature. "5l Wallack* s playing of the comedy character of Dick Dashall did not disturb the reviewer, however, since it was "nature itself. "52 One of the most exact correspondences to be found between the elocutionary theories and theatrical criticisms is contained in the American Monthly's description of Cooper. The critic in question thought Cooper exhibited the "most just and striking personification of character— the most pathetic bursts of feeling. "53 He went on to sum up his impressions in the following manner* tr — * " " k ?New England Galaxy, February 27, 1821;, n.p. 5QjJew York Mirror , October 29, 1825, p. 111. 5l Critic , November 29, 1828, p. 80. 5 2 Ibid . 53 American Monthly Magazine [Biglow], February, 1818, p. 239

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1U6 He has become more severe and chaste in his style of acting, and consequently more natural} he has acquired the power of exhibiting passion — strong feeling, by the deep agitation of his frame and the fine workings of his face, rather than by violent contortions, and furious gesticulation. His reading, too, though always good, is in better taste than it used to bet it is as rich as ever in the variety of tone and modulation, and is, at the same time, mare simple and natural. His conception, moreover, manifests a deeper insight into character, with a finer discrimination of adventitious traits, and a more philosophical and profound knowledge of the passions than we have ever discerned in him before* indeed he is an admirable actor. 5U These critical comments, fairly representative of the kind of theatrical criticism produced in the period, reflect the elocutionist's concern that the public speaker, reader, and actor portray emotion in a natural manner. The natural manner which they advocated was dependent not only upon an observation of how various emotions were indicated in real-life situations, but also upon a refinement which both elocutionist and critic considered necessary to give them the stamp of ''art.” Before leaving the subject of nature, it would be well to examine some of the theatrical criticisms which compare and contrast natural and artificial acting. Up to this point we have attempted to examine the criticisms which have dealt with "natural" acting and to note the similarities between the critic’s idea of "natural" delivery and the elocutionist's views concerning how the performer might appear to be natural. Obviously, both critic and elocutionist expected the performer to observe real life and model his use of voice, the action of his body, and the manner in which he expressed emotion upon such observation. Both, however, insisted that the public speaker, reader, or actor must go SUlbid.

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beyond the mere imitating of natural vocal patterns, natural bodily movements, and natural emotional expression, and bring the raw material of nature under the control of order and regularity. Furthermore, performers were expected to observe the principles of force and grace. Force was to be achieved by following nature, while grace was the result of the application of the rules of art. 55 The performer was to depend upon his observation and imitation of what he saw in nature for the power of his performance. On the other hand, he was to rely on art for that refinement, regularity, order, and imaginative quality which would enable him to play upon the "fancy" of his audience^ When we examine theatrical criticisms written during the period and compare them with the various comments made by those who have studied the acting styles of the period, we find similar views of "nature" and "art." Henry Irving spoke of Kean as having restored nature to the English stage (as had others) which heretofore had been dominated by the "artificiality" of the Kembles. Irving was careful, however, to note that there was never "an actor who so thought out his part, who so closely studied with the inward eye of the artist the waves of emotion that might have agitated the minds of the beings whom he represented. "57 A Philadelphia critic thought that Kean obviously relied more "on mechanical resources, than on his general mental I: — — — » I ! — — — 55Sheridan, Lectures on Elocution , p. 15U. 56ibid. 57Henry Irving, English Actors (Oxford, 1886), p. 56.

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preparation and powers, or his fervor of feeling. . . ."5® The critic said that, in spite of the fact that Kean was called a natural player, his style of acting was "hi$ily artificial and technical," "uniformly elaborate," with nothing left to the inspiration of the moment so that a second performance of a play was usually a facsimile of the first. 59 Leigh Hunt drew the distinction between the "natural" Kean and the "formal" Kemble when he noted that Kean’s displacement of Kemble was "as sure a thing as Nature against Art, or tears against cheeks of stone. "60 Hunt thought, however, that Kemble had a good idea of tragedy, "namely that a certain elevation of treatment was due to it, that there was dignity and perception of something superior to common life, which should justly be regarded as one of its constituent portions . He went on to marie the distinction between Kean, supposedly acting from impulse and inspiration, and Kemble, to wham "all was external and artificial." "Kemble," he said, "knew there was a difference between tragedy and common life, but did not know in what it consisted, except in manner, which he consequently carried to excess, losing si^it of passion. "62 He professed, on the other hand, that Kean knew "the real thing which is the height of passion, manner following 5®From the Philadelphia National Gazette, in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting, p, 301. 59lbid. 6QL,eigh Hunt, as quoted in Cole and Chinoy, Actors on Acting, p. 198. 6 llbid . 62lbid.

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11*9 it as a matter of course, and grace being developed from it in proportion to the truth of the sensation, as the flower issued from the entireness of the plant, or from all that is necessary to produce it."^3 But for all its artificiality, the school of Kemble was sometimes referred to as one employing the "natural and classical style of acting. Such seemingly conflicting ideas of what was, or what was not, natural give rise to the belief that perhaps conventionalized vocal patterns and body movements, when well coordinated with the speeches, and employed with ease and grace, may have seemed natural. On the other hand, bearing in mind the comments regarding KeanÂ’s style, it might be inferred that vocal patterns and gestures which appeared to be spontaneous and impulsive may have been carefully worked out in detail beforehand, A case in point may be taken from various criticisms of Forrest, who was lauded for the "fidelity of nature" in his portrayals. Alger even notes that some critics condemned Forrest for his "realistic method" and "robust energy," claiming that it made him too "vehemently genuine, his art not far enough removed from material reality . . . and lacking grace and delicacy.^ Moses, however, looked at ForrestÂ’s ability as a "natural" actor in a somewhat different light. He said that one went to see ForrestÂ’s acting in much the same spirit that he went to see a marvel of nature such as the Mammoth Cave: "Forrestte acting had about it the same show of quality. Outward expression and 63 Ibid. 6 %ew England Galaxy , Februazy 23* 1821, p. 78. William R. Alger, Life of Edwin Forrest (2 vols.j Philadelphia, 1877), n, U36.

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150 pose of majesty and power were there, with cavernous depths within, but there seemed to be lacking those qualities of mind and spirit which are the measure of the greatest acting."^ These contrasts between leading actors and their methods have been made in order to demonstrate the thesis made earlier in this study* that one cannot readily accept, as some students of acting have done, the contemporary writerÂ’s opinion that an actor is natural or artificial in his performance until the term itself is explored and defined within the framework of patterns of communication which existed in a given age. While dealing with the subject of naturalness in acting, it may be well to call attention to an additional point. Keeping in mind that acting styles do not change overnight or abruptly from one period or performer to another, the period provides some indication that there may have been a shift in the direction of a more modem sort of naturalism in acting. For example, a critic, in his review of Hamblin, Cooper, and Booth in Julius Caesar remarked that, although the audience had probably seen each of these roles performed equally well at other times by other actors, it was certainly "not accustomed to such an effective ensemble While this may be an isolated instance of actors performing in an ensemble manner, rather than exhibiting their talents individually or competitively, it is not so isolated when taken into consideration with other factors. There are comments by the critics to the effect that actors were beginning to leave off their tendency to face the audience ^^Moses, Forrest , p. 32. 6 ?New Yoric Mirror, August 27, 1831, p. 63 .

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151 and declaim their speeches. Even so slight a change as an actor’s turning to speak to other people on the stage would, therefore, have a more "natural” appearance. It probably did in the mind of the critic who commended Forrest for his delivery of the speech of Othello at the council chamber, and noted he was especially pleased that it was addressed "to the duke and members of the council, as it should have been, and not to the audience. "68 Implicit in this comment is the inference that actors must have generally addressed this speech directly to the audience. A departure, such as Forrest’s, can well be said to have been a step in the direction of "naturalness." This might have encouraged audiences and critics to assume the actor was being true to nature, in spite of mechanical or artificial tendencies common to his performance. There are numerous examples which suggest there was a desire for this change. Finn, as Hamlet, for instance, was criticized for facing the audience too much when he should have been looking at the ghost; 69 and Mr. Hu^ies was advised "to give up the ghost" or study the part more attentively, and keep his eyes fixed upon the characters to whom he appeared and not on the audience.? 0 Another feature of the acting of this period which must be treated in connection with the problem of naturalness, is the common practice of "making points." "Points" were accomplished by means of "explosive" use of voice and sudden mechanical reactions of the body. 68 Ibid., May 3, 1828, p. 339. 6 9ibid ., August lit, 182U, p. 19. ? °Ibid . , September 11, l82it, p. 5U.

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152 In many actors of the day they were perhaps the prime considerations and were performed in a wholly mechanical manner. Other actors, however, were probably able to make their "points" appear natural throu#i their achievement of them easily, gracefully, and quietly. Charles Kemble, while he was reported to be an actor who worked for "points," passing over "all opportunities to display his power till the proper opportunity comes, and the occasion demands the display. " 7 ^ Nevertheless, the critic considered KembleÂ’s reading "true to sense and nature. "72 The Mirror also thought Kemble's use of points should be a model for other actors since he not only made them naturally and quietly, but also effectively. 73 A "point" was generally defined, in words of a Mirror critic, as "a certain way of prominently showing particular beauties. . . ." 7 ^ The actor played for these climactic moments when he could reach a "point" and bring down the applause of the house. In fact, some actors appear to have concentrated on them to such an extent that they played the "level" scenes in an indifferent manner. The Mirror reprinted an article from the London Opera Glass which stated that the English performers, especially the tragedians, generally think only of making what they call "points." "They throw all their power into some few explosions, and fancy that any further effort would be thrown away." 7 ^ Kean was said to be an actor who played for 71 New York Mirror, February 23, 1833, p. 271. 72 lbid . 7 3lbid ., December lU, 1833* p. 191. 7Ulbid., April 26, 1828, p. 335. 7 5lbld ., February 10, 1827, p. 228.

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153 the high moments of a play when he could make a "point," and in the intervals of less intense emotion and action, he was noted to be restless. 76 This device of "making points" was not, however, always approved by the critic. An actor by the name of Barton was commended for seldom aiming at points, which were, in the critic's estimation, detestable, "except in the hands of a fine genius and then they are natural, not sought. "77 Commenting on the excellence of Macready's Hamlet, a critic evidenced a similar view, praising his acting because it did not consist of "a point, a flash, a flat scene, and then another point, and flash, and flat again. "78 In this examination of theatrical criticisms of "natural" acting, we have tried to sh on that this criterion bulked large in the criticism of the period. Even so, the many references, seemingly contradictor, make it difficult to fathom what it was the actor did that won him critical acclaim for the naturalness of his acting. In seeking a solution to the problem, we have pointed to the parallel which existed between the standards advocated by the elocutionists to help the public speaker, reader, and actor to acquire naturalness, and those by which the theatrical critic judged the actor. Both critic and elocutionist demanded that the performer ground his art solidly in "nature," that he observe the patterns of actual conversation in his speaking, that he employ lifelike movements in his portrayals, and that he observe and * > v * • employ the signs of the various emotions as he found them expressed in 76tfoses, Forrest , p. 28. 77New York Mirror , September 25, 1831, p. 95. 78ibid., October 21, 1826, p. 103.

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real life. Coupled with such advice, however, there was always the corollary thatpnature, no matter how much it might be depended on to produce the power so necessary to portray the great tragic roles, must nevertheless be refined, ordered, and conformed to the requirements of "art,” in order that the actor embody such qualities as smoothness, grace, and ease, along with force, energy, and verisimilitude//

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CHAPTER VII SOME OBSERVATIONS ON THE ACTING STYLES AND TECHNIQUES WHICH PREVAILED ON THE AMERICAN STAGE This study, which has applied elocutionary "patterns of communication" to theatrical criticisms in order to illuminate the styles and techniques of American acting which prevailed from 1815 to 181 * 0 , is not one that lends itself to conclusions that can be enumerated in "order categorical" with a quod erat demonstrandum placed at the end. It does, however, call for a series of observations pointing out the standard patterns, so far as they have been defined, to which the actor's pronunciation, vocal usage, bodily action, and emotional expression were expected to conform, and those patterns by which his "fidelity to nature" was judged. Furthermore, sane statement should be made of the probable value of this method in a study of acting styles of a former era, and perhaps suggest the usefulness of examining modem acting techniques in the light of acceptable patterns of communication of the present age. Criticisms of the actor's pronunciation reveal that critics of the period were generally agreed the actor was to conform to the prescriptions for pronunciation offered by the popular dictionaries, a position which echoed the elocutionist's teaching on the subject. Since the dictionaries of Sheridan and Walker were the ones generally referred 155

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156 to, the standard of pronunciation demanded of the actor was, to some degree, that of the eighteenth century. Thus, the theatrical criticism reflects the conservative tendencies of American pronunciation as pointed out by lingusitic scholars. For all the criticism of the actor's pronunciation, it should be said, however, the critic appears to have given the least attention to this element of the actor's delivery. Then too, since a portion of the criticism did not refer to it to any significant degree, we might infer that the actors, American as well as British, had achieved a fairly uniform type of pronunciation. Since British writers were generally rather scornful of American speech, the Instances in which they found an American actor's pronunciation acceptable would argue that it was not very different from that heard on the British stage. American criticisms of the British actor did, of course, reflect the American preference for the "flat a" instead of the "broad a." With this exception, and perhaps that of the use of the final r, stage diction was probably fairly uniform. One of the most difficult elements to reconstruct with regard to an acting style of the past is that of voice. Yet the patterns of vocal usage are essential to a precise understanding of any acting style. The critics' descriptions of vocal usage, when examined in the light of the elocutionists' teachings, provide some indication of what the nineteenth-century actor did with his voice when the critic put the stamp of approval on the transitions, modulations, cadences, inflections, or styles of reading and declamation. It would appear the actor of the period used his voice as a vehicle for display, thrilling audiences of the time with amazing transitions from quiet and tender tones in

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157 sentimental passages to terrific explosions in moments of violent passion. Such an observation is quite in accord with the purpose for which audiences went to the theatre in that period} that is, not necessarily to see the plays, but to be thrilled by the exhibition which the actor made of his talents in familiar roles. The actor was thus in very much the same position as that of the modem opera singer who must be a virtuoso performer. Just as the present-day opera audience waits for the soprano to reach the high note at the end of a wellknown aria, theatre audiences in the decade and a half following the end of the War of 1812 went to enjoy, as it were, virtuoso acting. They, too, waited expectantly for those climactic moments when the performer used his voice to demonstrate the maximum emotional content of a scene. Although the critic appraised an actorÂ’s vocal technique as an item worthy of admiration in itself, he was also interested in the use of these techniques as a "means" through which the actor was able to bring out the hidden "beauties" and subtle meanings of the dialogue in his reading or declamation. The critic, knowing the plays almost as well as the performers, was able to compare one actorÂ’s reading with anotherÂ’s, to record departures from accepted emphases and phrasings, and to call the actorÂ’s attention to lapses when he departed too far from conventional practice. In this, the critic might be said to resemble the modern opera critic far more than his present-day dramatic counterpart. In terms of vocal usage, the actor was essentially a virtuoso performer who used his voice for the sake of making a vocal display. The attention given to vocal exhibitionism led naturally to a style

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158 characterized by certain "bombastic" features. The study indicates that even "a little rant arri bombast" were considered, at times, necessary and appropriate to the characters being portrayed, and to the language being spoken. Such playing demanded of the actor, if he were to achieve stardom, that he possess a voice of great compass, flexibility, and volume, one capable of achieving the desired effects and enabling him to compete vocally with the other actors. The patterns by which the actor communicated through physical activity involved such elements as his stature, and his use of attitude, gesture, and facial expression. The critic, and presumably the audiences as well, expected the actor to possess a physique which was harmonious with the heroic element in the great tragic roles. Some actors, such as Kean, however, were evidently able to compensate for their lack of stature with the power of their voices, the energy of their bodily movements, and the grace and elegance of their gestures. The audience expected the actor to accomplish much of his physical portrayal through the "striking" of attitudes, or physical poses, which could be assumed and held for a short period of time. The actorÂ’s ability to move easily and gracefully from one attitude to another was also a regularly employed test of acting skill. Grace and ease of movement, however, were not the only requirements, as the action many times required the actor to possess great agility and physical dexterity. Many of the gestures used during the period were as conventional as those which the elocutionists described in their manuals. Yet, with it all, the actor was measured in terns of his ability to employ such gestures and movements with ease, elegance, and a

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159 "fidelity to nature." Finally, much attention was given to the manner in which the actor employed facial expression, especially in regard to his ability to depict emotion through the use of his eye. The problem involved in analyzing the actor's method of portraying emotion is closely related to the use of both voice and bodily action, and at the same time necessitates consideration of the problem of "naturalness." Critics and audiences looked to the actor to employ his voice and his physical movements in such a way as to make the most powerful emotional impact. Even inarticulate, or animal-like tones of voice, when they were employed at the "height of passion," were acceptable. It is probable that the actor used many bodily postures and gestures traditionally or conventionally associated with various emotions, since the critic, oriented to popular elocutionary theory, could "read" emotions portrayed by facial expressions, attitudes, and gestures. While the critic's descriptions of gestures lead us to believe that actors employed many of the same or similar gestures which the manuals on elocution recommended as guides to the public speaker, we must remember that the actor was required to manipulate these physical components of his technique so that they appeared natural and spontaneous. One of the major criteria, if not indeed the prime consideration, by which the actor's excellence was judged was that of his "naturalness." This criterion has been a perpetual "stumbling-block" for students of acting. It would appear firom this study that the label natural must be interpreted, if we are to avoid a common error, in the framework of the patterns of a given age. For the period under consideration in this study, it has been shown that the teachers of elocution set as one of

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160 their major aims that of showing the speaker, reader, and actor how to acquire "naturalness" in delivery. The critic interpreted the phrase "follow nature" very much as the elocutionist did in that he took it to mean that the signs by which ideas and emotions were expressed in real life should be observed and employed on the stage. Nevertheless, both believed that nature should be "refined" by "art," and the performer's gestures, vocal patterns, bodily movements, and manner of expressing emotion were to be governed by such rules as would help him acquire grace and ease in their manipulation. Such an observation leads to the belief that even the most "natural" actors of the period employed "means" which were actually hi^ily stylized or conventionalized* It is probable that some actors were more "natural" than others. What is apparent, however, is that actors who have traditionally been labeled "natural," as Kean has been, in reality did not employ a "natural" method in their portrayals . It is also apparent that an actor who probably did use more of the raw material of nature, as Forrest is said to have done, was not necessarily acclaimed over the conventional or traditional player. One point which seems to stand out in this consideration of "fidelity of nature" is that the audiences and critics of that day were, in all likelihood, unable to draw a definite distinction between the "formal" and the "natural" actor. They probably labeled as "natural" portrayal what appeared to be natural, and what was performed with such grace and ease that it seemed to be the product of the actor's spontaneous thinking and feeling. Another point to be considered when dealing with the problem of naturalness is that this period appeared to be one characterized by

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l6l changing styles and techniques. At the outset of the period, the stage was perhaps dominated by the ’’teapot” style of acting, or one which bore marked similarities to some of its more distinguishing characteristics . From the reviews of the acting examined, it would seem that, as the period progressed, the acting styles became less rigid in this respect. Critics paid more attention to "natural” gestures, "natural” vocal patterns, and "natural” emotional expression, as they began to praise the actor for "conversing" with other actors on the stage, rather than delivering speeches to the audience* As this change progressed, there appeared to be a slight lessening of emphasis car the actor's vocal and bodily techniques, and more stress on the emotional and natural elements. But beyond these matters of technique, it may be well to ask whether the study indicates there is any particular merit in studying acting styles with reference to prevailing communication patterns. It would appear, on the basis of this examination of theatrical criticism in the light of the standards of delivery as set by the elocutionists, that the method is one that can be used to advantage in attempting to visualize the acting bearing a given label. The labels of "natural," "romantic," "classical," "formal," "neo-romantic," or the like have little significance until we can describe the patterns of voice, bodily action, emotional portrayal, and natural expression which characterize the style. The use of this method in a study of the acting styles of a past age is dependent, of course, upon the availability of a body of material which describes what might be called the "paradigms" of the communicative system of the time. Such a method as this will not solve

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162 all the problems which will occur in the process of studying styles of acting, but it will surely have a distinct contribution to make in helping the student recreate the histrionic art of a former age. In addition to the fact that this particular method has value in the study of the actorÂ’s art of the past, perhaps it may also be used to shed light on modem styles and techniques of acting. It will be granted that instruments of mass communication, the microphone, the moving picture camera, and television have affected, and will continue to affect, the patterns of communication as they exist in the modem age. It is necessary but to mention the influence which the presence of a microphone has on the patterns of the speaker's voice to show that such an instrument can alter a pattern of communication. Furthermore, since the objects nearest the camera lens are enlarged, the motion picture or television actorÂ’s patterns of gesture are also different from those he may effectively employ on the legitimate stage. It would apoear, too, that there would be value in studying the patterns of emotional portrayal and natural expression as they are affected by these instruments of communication. While considering the effect of different media on patterns of communication, it might be said that the actor has always been able to adapt himself to the demands of the theatre as it has changed from age to age. The "Artists of Dionysus" in the fifth century, B, C., had to employ far different patterns of communication from those of the Moliere troupe performing at the Petit Bourbon in Paris in the seventeenth century. Also those actors who performed at The Globe in seventeenthcentury London followed different patterns of vocal usage and bodily

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163 movement from those to which a modem Broadway audience responds. Beyond these differences, which occur from one period to another, there are others which take place within a given period. For instance, the shadows moving across the panoramic screen at the local Bijou require actors to communicate emotion and to depict nature in a somewhat different fashion, not only from that followed by an actor on the legitimate stage, but also in a manner different from that of those shadows which play across the far smaller screen of the television set in an average living room. But the actor will adapt the patterns of communication inherited from generations of players, as he has always done, and he will remold and remake them into the images which audiences of his own time will accept and to which they will accord a due measure of applause. The question of evaluating the product of performers of the past is one which admits of an answer only in relative terms. An inquiry as to whether we may have lost, in the demand today for "realism" and "naturalism" in acting, the power and excitement which the actor injected into his performances of the nineteenth century becomes somewhat meaningless in view of a fundamental premise of this study, that a style or technique of acting is of, and for, its own age and must be interpreted within the framework of the communicative conventions which that age accepts. All too often the tendency is to look back upon great performers of the past with a nostalgia for their performances, without realizing that, with an audience oriented to different conventions, these actors might appear only ridiculous. Practically no opera-goer who heard Caruso, however, will admit his peer among contemporary singers,

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161 * nor will those who recall performances of the "divine Sarah" concede like power to any modern actress. The present generation of play-goers, nevertheless, finds excitement in present-day actors and their performances. The critic or student with an "authoritarian" outlook may mourn the loss of "standards" of stage diction, of vocal and body culture by actors of this era, and of the yardsticks by which he might measure accurately the power of an actor's emotional expression, or judge the quality of his realistic portrayal. But we cannot apply to twentieth century acting the standards which the nineteenth century esteemed, any more than we can demand of our contemporary public speakers that they follow the patterns employed by nineteenth-century orators. Although such prescriptions cannot be recommended for modern actors, it might be beneficial for the modem student of acting, obsessed with the minutiae of the "Method," to realize that there have been actors, and remarkable ones, who, employing vastly different methods, moved audiences tremendously in their own day and achieved for themselves secure niches in the actor's hall of fame. It may be a chastening thought, as well, for those who presume to instruct actors in methods and techniques that, while there will always be in the next generation and the next century those critics and play-goers who will look back to the theatre of our own time and long for the "good old days," there will inevitably be a far larger group of younger devotees of theatre who will disparage the older actors and find their enthusiasms in those who employ new and modem techniques which conform to the patterns of communication evolved to serve the purposes of their age.

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BIBLIOGRAPHY Books (Note* the citation in brackets following some of the regular entries below is that of the earliest extant edition.) Agate, James E. Buzz, Buzz l Essays of the Theatre . London: W. Collins Sons St Co., Ltd., n.d. . Those Were the Nights . London: Hutchinson & Co., Ltd., n.d. . Their Hour Upon the Stage . Cambridge: The Mandarin Press, n.d. Alger, William R. Life of Edwin Forrest . Philadelphia: J, B. Lippincott and Co., 18 7 1 ?. American Educational Theatre Association. A Selected Bibliography and Critical Comment on the Art, Theory and Technique of Acting . Edited for the American Educational Theatre Association by the Committee on Research, John H. McDowell, Chaiman. Ann Arbor, 191 : 8 . Archer, William. Masks or Faces ? A Study in the Psychology Acting . London: Longmans, Green and Co., I 088 . Aristotle. Rhetoric . Translated by W. Rhys Roberts with an introduction by Friedrich Solmsen. New York: The Modem Library, 195U. Armstrong, Cecil Ferard. A Century of Great Actors 1750-1850 • London: Mills and Boone, Ltd., 1912. Austin, Gilbert. Chironomia ; or a Treatise on Rhetorical Delivery , Comprehending Many Precepts Both Ancient and Modem, for the Proper Regulation of the Voice, the Countenance, and Gesture Together with an Investigation of the Elements of Gesture, and a New Method for the Notation Thereof. London: printed for T. Cade 11 and W. Davies, 1806. Ayres, Alfred. Acting and Actors , Elocution and Elocutionists : A Book about Theatre Folk and Theater Art. New York: D. Appleton and Company, 18 9 U. 165

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166 Baker, H. Barton. The London Stage : Its History and Traditions from 3576 to 1888. London: W. H, Allen and Co,, 1889, , Our Old Actors. London: Richard Bentley and Son, 1881. Barber, Jonathan. A Grammar of Elocution : Containing the Principles of the Arts of Reading and Speaking} illustrated by Appropriate Exercises and Examples, Adapted to Colleges, Schools, and Private Instruction: the Whole Arranged in the Order in Which It Is Taught in Yale College. New Haven: A. H. Maltby, 1830. Barrett, Lawrence. Edwin Forrest . Boston: James R. Osgood & Co., 1881 . Bernard, John. Retrospections of the Stage . London: Henry Colburn & Richard Bentley,' 1830. Binfdiam, Caleb. The American Preceptor ; Being a New Selection of Lessons for Reading and Speaking, Designed for the Use of Schools. 1:2nd ed. Boston: Manning and Loring, 1811. [2nd ed. Boston: I. Thomas & £. T. Andrews, 1795. 3 . The Columbian Orator : Containing a Variety of Original and Selected Pieces} Together with Rules Calculated to Improve Youth in the Ornamental and Useful Art of Eloquence. 5th Troy ed. Troy: Parker and Bliss, 1811. [1st ed. Boston: David West, 1797.3 Blair, Hugh. Lectures on Rhetoric and Belles Lettres. 7th Am. ed. New York: Ever Duykinck, 1817. [1st ed. London: W. Strahan, T. Cadell, 1783.] Bridges -Adams, W. The Irresistible Theatre . Vol. I: From the Conquest to the Commonwealth. London: Seeker 4 Warburg, 1957. Biigance, William N. (ed.). History and Criticism of Public Address . New York: McGraw Hill Book Co., 191:3 • Bronson, C. P. Elocution; or Mental and Vocal Philosophy: Involving the Principles of Reading and Speaking} and Designed for the Development and Cultivation of Both Body and Mind, in Accordance with the Nature, Uses, and Destiny of Man. Louisville, Ky. : Morton and Griswold, 18U5. Brown, Clarence A. The Achievements of American Criticism . New York: The Ronald Press, 195U. Brown, T. Allston. History of the American Stage , Containing Biographical Sketches of Nearly Every Member of the Profession That Has Appeared on the American Stage, from 1733 to 1870. New York: Dick and Fitzgerald, Publishers, 1870.

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167 Brownell, W, C. Criticism . New Yorks Charles Scribner's Sons, 191U. Bur^i, James. The Art of Speaking . London: printed for T. Longman, J. Buck! and, W. tenner, J. Waugh, E. DiUy, T. Field, l?6l. Butcher, Samuel Henry. Aristotle's Theory of Poetry and Fine Art , with a Critical Text and Translation of the Poetics, with a Prefatory Essay, "Aristotelian Literary Criticism,"’* toy John Gassner. l|th ed. New Yorks Dover Publications, 1951. I Cady, Edwin Harrison, Hoffman, Frederick J., and Pearce, Hoy Harvey, The Growth o f American Literature . 2 vcls. New Yorks American Book Co., 1956. Charvat, William. The Origins of American Critical Thought 1810-183$ . Philadelphia s University of Pennsylvania Press, 1936. Clapp, Henry Austin. Reminiscences of a Dramatic Critic , with an Essay on the Art of Henry Irving. Bostons Houghton, Mifflin Co., 1902. Clapp, W, W. Jr. A Record of the Boston Stage . Boston: James Munroe and Co., I85j« Clark, Barrett H. European Theories of the Drama, with a Supplement on the American Dramas An Anthology of Dramatic Theory and Criticism from Aristotle to the Present Day, in a Series of Selected Texts, with Commentaries, Biographies, and Bibliographies. New Yorks Crown Publishers, 191*7* Claric, Donald Lemen, Rhetoric i n Greco-Roman Education . New York: Columbia University Press, 195?. r Coad, 0. S. and Mims Jr., Edwin. The American Stage . Vol. XIV of The Pageant of America . New Havens Yale University Press, 1929. Cockin, William. The Art of Delivering Written Language i or, an Essay on Reading, in Which the Sub ject Is Treated Philosophically as Well as with a View to Practice. Londons J. Dodsley, 1775. Coggin, Philip A. The Uses of Drama s A Historical Survey of Drama and Education from Ancient Greece to the Present Day. New Yorks George Barziller, Inc., 1956. Cole, Toby, and Chinoy, Helen Krich. Actors on Acting : the Theories, Techniques, and Practices of the Great Actors of All Times as Told in Their Own Words. New Yorks Crown Publishers, 191*9. Comma r®r, Henry Steele. The American Mind : an Interpretation of American Thought and Character since the 1880's. New Havens Yale University Press, 1950.

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168 Cook, Dutton. Hours with the Players . New ed. London* Chatto and Windus, lB^— Cooper, James Fenlmore . pie American Democrat . Reproduction of original* The American Democrat * or tints on the Social and Civic Relations of the United States of America. Cooperstown* H. & E. Pinckney, 1838. Edited with an introduction by H. L. Mencken. New York* A Knopf, 1931. Crawford, Mary Caroline. The Romance of the American Theatre . Boston* Little, Brown and Co., 192*>. Darlington, W. A. The Actor and His Audience . London* Phoenix House, 19U9. Drake, Daniel. Discourse on the History, Character, and Prospects of the West (183U) . A facsimile reproduction by Perry Miller, Gainesville, Florida* Scholar’s Facsimiles & Reprints, 1955. Dulles, Foster Rhea. America Learns to Play * A History of Popular Recreation 1607-19UO! New York* D. Appleton-Century Company, 19U0. Dunlap, William. A History of the American Theatre . New York* J. & J. Harper, 1832. Enfield, William. The Speaker * or. Miscellaneous Pieces, Selected from the Best English Writers, and Disposed under Proper Heads, with a View to Facilitate the Improvement of Youth in Reading and Speaking to Which Is Prefixed an Essay on Elocution. Philadelphia* John Bioren and Thomas Desilver, 1817. [1st ed. London, 1771*.] Freedley, George and Reeves, John A. A History of the Iheatre . New York* Crown Publishers, 191*1. Frobisher, Joseph Edwin. Acting and Oratory ; Designed for Public Speakers, Teachers, Actors, etc. New York* College of Oratory and Acting, 1879. Fry, Christopher (ed. ). An Experience of Critics ; and the Approach to Dramatic Criticism by W. A. Darlington, and Others, with a Prologue by Alec Guineas. New York* Oxford University Press, 1953* Gassner, John. Form and Idea in Modem Iheatre . New York* Dryden Press, 1956. Goodrich, Chauncey A. Select British Eloquence . New York* Harper & Brothers, 1853* Gray, Charles H. Theatrical Criticism in London to 1795 . New York* Columbia University Press, l&i.

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169 Halline, Allan (ed.). American Plays , Selected and edited with critical introductions and bibliographies. New York* American Book Company, 1935* Hanson, Willis T. The Early Life of John Howard Payne . Boston: Bibliophile Society, l&J* ' ' " r • (f/ • •' r--$ ' J • * k Harrison, Gabriel. John Howard Payne , Dramatist, Poet, Actor, and Author of "Home, Sweet Home." Revised ed. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott and Co., 1885. Hartnoll, Phyllis (ed.). The Oxford Companion to the Theatre . London: Oxford University Press, l$£l. Hazlitt, William. Hazlitt on Theatre ; Selections from the view of the English Stage, and Criticisms and Dramatic Essays. Edited by William Archer and Robert Lowe. New York: Hill and Wang, 1957* Horoblow, Arthur. A History of the Theatre in America , from Its Beginnings to the Present Tims. 2 vols. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott Co., 1919. * Hughes, Glenn. A History of the American Theatre : 1700-1950. New York: Samuel French, 1951. i * Hunt, Leigh. Dramatic Essays , Selected and Edited with Notes and an Introduction by William Archer and Robert W. Lowe. London: W. Scott, Ltd., 189U. Hutton, Laurence. Plays and Players. New York: Hurd and Houghton. l87 5. — Irving, Henry. English Actors : Their Characteristics and Their Methods, a Discourse Delivered in the University Schools at Oxford, June 26, 1886. Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1886. \ *» James, Reese D. Old Drury of Philadelphia, A History of the Philadelphia Stage, l800-183i>. Including the Diary or Daily Account Book of William Burke Wood, Co-Manager with William Wood of the Chestnut Street Theatre, Familiarly known as Old Drury. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1932. Jones, Howard Mumford. Ideas in America . Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, • The Theory of American Literature . Ithaca, N. Y. : Cornell Cornell University Press, 19U8. Joseph, B. L. Elizabethan Acting. London: Oxford University Press. 1952.

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170 Lewes, George Henry. On Actors and the Art of Acting . New York: Grove Press, 1957. Littlewood, Samuel R. The Art of Criticism . London: Sir Isaac Pitman & Sons, Ltd., 1952. Logan, Olive. Before the Footliyfrt and Behind the Scenes : a Book about "The Show Business" in All Its Branches: from Puppet Shows to Grand Ope raj from Mountebanks to Menageries} from Learned Pigs to Lecturers; from Burlesque Blondes to Actors and Actresses: with Some Observations and Reflections (Original and Reflected) on Morality and Inmorality in Amusements: Thus Exhibiting the M Show World” as Seen from Within, through the Eyes of the Former Actress, as wall as from Without, through the Eyes of the Present Lecturer and Author. Philadelphia: Parmelee & Co., 1870. Lossing, Benson J. Our Country: a Household History of the United States for All Readers, from the Discovery of America to the Present Time. 3 vols. New York: Johnson & Bailey, 1895* Mantzius, Karl. A History of Dramatic Art, in Ancient and Modem Times. New tork: Peter Smith, 1937. Mason, John. An Essay on Elocution, or Pronunciation . 2nd ed. London, 17U8. list ed. London, iful.j Matthews, Brander, and Hutton, Lawrence (eds.). Actors and Actresses of Great Britain and the United States : from the Days of David Garrick to the Present Time. 5 vols. New York* Cassell & Co., 1886. _________ (ed.). Papers on Acting, with a Preface by Henry W. Wells. New York* Sill and Wang, 1958. Mayorga, Margaret Gardner. A Short History of American Drama : Commentaries on Plays Prior to 1920. New fork* Dodd," Mead at Co., 1932. Mencken, Henry Louis. The American Language ; an Inquiry into the Development of English in the United States. l*th ed. New York* A. A. Knopf, 1936. Moses, Montrose J. and Brown, John Mason. The American Theatre as Seen Its Critics, 1752-1931* . New York* W. W. Norton & Co., Inc., by It: iSfir Moses, Montrose J. Famous Actor-Families in America . New York: Thomas Y. Crowell & Co., 190&.

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171 Mott, Frank Luther. A History of American Magazines 17t*l~l8$0 . New Yorki D. Appleton & Co., 1930* Murdoch, James E. Analytic Elocution ; Containing Studies, Theoretical and Practical, of Expressive Speech. Cincinnati, New York, and Others: 1881*. . A Plea for the Spoken Language : an Essay upon Comparative Elocution, Condensed from Lectures Delivered throughout the United States. Cincinnati, New York, and Others: 1883* . The Stage , or Recollections of Actors and Acting from an Experience of Fifty Years. Cincinnati: Robert Clarke it Co., 1881*. Murray, Lindley. The English Reader , or Pieces in Prose and Verse Selected from the Best Writers to Assist Young Persons to Read with Propriety and Effect* to Improve Their Language and Sentiments, and to Inculcate Some of the Most Important Principles of Piety and Virtue, with a Few Preliminary Observations on the Principles of Good Reading. Albany: E. and E. Hosford, 1821*. [1st ed. London: York, printed for Longman and Rees, 1799*3 Nicoll, Allardyce. A History of Early Nineteenth Centuiy Drama, 1800 l8£0. 2 vols. Cambridge: The University Press, 1930. Ormsbee, Helen. Backstage with Actors : from the Time of Shakespeare to the Present Day. New York: Crowell, 1938. Odell, George C. D. Annals of the New York Stage . 1 $ vols. New York: Columbia University Press, 192f-l91*9. Page, Eugene R. (ed.). Metamora and Other Plays by John Augustus Stone, Silas S. Steele, Charles Powell Clinch, Joseph M. Field, H. J. Conway (?), John H, Wilkins, Joseph Stevens Jones, John Brougham. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 191*1. Parker, Edward G. The Golden Age of American Oratory. Boston: Whittemore, Niles 'anOnf;^: Parkes, Henry B. The American Experience : an Interpretation of the History and Civilization of the American People. New York: Knopf, 19U7. Parrington, Vernon Louis. Main Currents in American Th ought* an Interpretation of American Literature from the Beginnings to 1920. New York: Harcourt, Brace and Company, c. 1930. Porter, Ebenezer. Analysis of the Principles of Rhetorical Delivery , as Applied in Reading and Speaking. Andover : Mark Newman, 1827.

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172 . The Rhetorical Reader, Consisting of Instructions for Regulating the Voice'. l£th ed. New York, 1835. [1st ed. Andover, Mass., 1831.] Styles, Thomas. Words and Ways of American English . New Yorkj Random House, 195^* Quinn, Arthur H. A History of the American Drama from the Beginning to the Civil War. New Yorkj Harper and Brothers, 1923. . (ed.). The Literature of the American People . New York* New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, Iric,, 1957. . (ed.). Re presentative American Plays , from 1767 to the Present Day. 7th ed. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, Inc., 1953. Randall, John Herman. The Making of the Modem Mind ; a Survey of the Intellectual Background of the Present Age. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin Company, c. 1926. Robb, Mary Margaret. Oral Interpretation in American Colleges and Universities : A historical Study of Training Methods. New York : The H. W. Wilson Company, 19U1. Rush, James. The Philosophy of the Human Voice : Embracing Its Physiological History: Together with a System of Principles by which Criticism in the Art of Elocution May Be Rendered Intel! gible [ sic ], and Instruction, Definite and Comprehensive. 6th ed., enlarged. Philadelphia: J. B. Lippineott & Co., 1867. [1st ed. Philadelphia: J. Maxwell, 1827] Scott, William. Lessons in Elocution ? or, a Selection of Pieces, in Prose and Verse, for the Improvement of Youth in Reading and Speaking j to This Edition are Prefixed Elements of Gesture, Illustrated by Four Plates j and Rules for Expressing, with Propriety the Various Passions and Emotions of the Mind. New York: printed for W. Durell et al , 1802. Sheridan, Thomas. A Course of Lectures on Elocution : Together with Two Dissertations on Language and Some Other Tracts Relative to those Subjects. 2nd ed. Dublin: Samuel Whyte, 1761*. [1st ed. London, 1762. ] . A Complete Dictionary o f the English La nguage . 2nd ed. London, 1789. [lsi ed. London, ltflO.] “ . Lectures on the Art of Reading ; First Part Containing the .art of Reading Prose. Dublin j Samuel Whyte, 1775. [1st. ed. London, 1775.]

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173 Smith, Sol. Theatre Management in the West and South for ThirtyYears . New York; Harper and Brothers, 1^68. Smith, S. Stephenson. The Craft of the Critic . Nev York: Thomas Y. Crowell Co., 1931* Spiller, Robert E., et al . Literary History of the United States . New York: The Macmillan Co., 19L8. Spingarn, J. E. Creative Criticism . New York: Henry Holt and Co., 1917. Stauffer, Donald A. (ed.). The Intent of the Critic . Princeton: Princeton University Press, 19iil. t v •' * > % * Steele, Joshua. An Essay toward Establishing the Melody and Measure of Speech To Be Expressed and Perpetuated by Peculiar Symbols. London: W. Bowyer and J. Nichols, for J. Almon, 1775. i 4 I. ' . • * % Tassin, Algernon de Vivier. The Magazine in America . New York: Dodd, Mead & Co., 1916. Taylor, John. Records of My Life . New York: J. & J. Harper, 1833. Tocqueville, Alexis de. Democracy in America . The Henry Reeve Text as Revised by Francis Bowen, Now Further Corrected and Edited with Introduction, Editorial Notes, and Bibliographies by Phillips Bradley. New York: Knopf, 19U5. * • * Vandenhoff, George. The Art of Elocution : as an Essential Part of Rhetoric with Instructions in Gesture and an Appendix of Oratorical, Poetical, and Dramatic Extracts. Uth ed. London: Sampson, Low, and Sons, 1867. . Leaves from an Acto r's Notebook; with Reminiscences and Chitchat of the Green-Room and the Stage} in England and America. New York: D. Appleton and Co., i860.

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17U Walker, John. A Critical Pronouncing Dictionary and Expositor of the English Lan.] Walkley, A. B. Dramatic Criticism ; Three Lectures. London: J. Murray 1903. . Playhouse Impressions . London: T. F. Unwin, 1892.

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175 Wallace, Karl R. H istory of Speech Education in America a Background Studies. New Yorki Appleton-Century-Crofts, Inc., 1951*. Ward, Alfred C. S pecimens of English Dramatic Criticism XVII-XX Centuries . London: 6xford University Press, 191*5* Wendell, Barrett. A Literary History of America . l*th ed. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1907. Whately, Richard, Elements of Rhetoric: Comprising an Analysis of the Laws of Moral Evidence and of Persuasion, with Rules for Argumentative Composition and Elocution. 7th ed., revised. London: B. Fe llowes, 181*6, Wilson, Arthur Harman, A History of the Philadelphia Theatre 1635-1855. Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania nress, 1935* Wood, William Burke. Personal Recollections of the Stage , Embracing Notices of Actors, Authors, and Auditors, During a Period of Forty Years, Philadelphia: H. C. Baird, 1855. Articles Angus, William. "An Appraisal of David Garrick Based Mainly Contemporary Sources," Quarterly Journal of Speech [QJS], XXV (February, 1939), 30-1*2. Baskervllle, Barnet. "The Dramatic Criticism of Oratory," QJS, XLV (February, 1959), 39-1*5. Christ ophersen, Merrill G. "Early American Dramatic Criticism," Southern Speech Journal. XXI (Spring, 1956), 195-203. Downer, Alan S. "The Natural History of Acting," Players Magazine [FM], XXI (November, 191*5), 9-11, 12, 26. • "The Natural History of Acting, (concluded)" PM, XXI (December, 191*5), 9-10. • "Nature to Advantage Dressed: Eighteenth Century Acting," Publications of the Modem Language Association [PMLA], LVIII (December, 191*3), 1002-1037. * "Players and Painted Stage: Nineteenth Century Acting, " MA, LXI (June, 191*6), 522-576.

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176 , "The Private Papers of George Spelvin" t Part I: "On Romantic Acting, Principally Edmund Kean," PM, XIX (May, 19U3), 11-12. Part lit "75n Romantic Acting, Principally Junius Brutus Booth," FM, XX (October, 19it3), 9, 20-22. Part Hit "The Eminent," PM, XX (November, 19ii3), 7-8. Part IV t "The Old School," PM, XX (December, 19U3), 7-8. Part Vt "On the Survival of Classicism in Acting, PM, XX (January, 19UU), 7-8. Fritz, Charles A. "Early American Works on Speech Training," Quarterly Journal of Speech Education, XIII (April, 1927)* 151-160. Gebauer, Emanuel L. "The Theatrical Criticism of William Archer," QJS XXIV (April, 1938), 183-192. Granville -Barker, Harley. "The Heritage of the Actor," The Quarterly Review , CCXXXIX (July, 1923), 53-73. Guthrie, Warren. "The Elocution Movement— England," Speech Monographs [SM], XVIII (March, 1951), 37-30. McCloskey, John C. "The Campaign of Periodicals after the War of 1812 for National American Literature," FMLA , L (1935), 262-273* Martin, Howard H. "The Fourth of July Oration," QJS, XLIV (December, 1958), 393-UOl. Newman, John B. "The Role of Joshua Steele in the Development Speech Education in America," SM, XX (March, 1953), 65-73. Parrish, W. M. "The Burglarizing of Burgh, or the Case of the Purloined Passions," QJS, XXXVIII (December, 1952), U31-k3k. , "The Concept of ‘Naturalness, ,H QJS , XXXVII (December, 1951), m*3k* Spencer, Benjamin T. "A National Literature, 1837-1855." American Literature , VIII (March, 1936-January, 1937), 125-159. Spiller, Robert E. "Critical Standards in the American Romantic Movement," College English, VIII (19U7), 3kU-352. Vandraegen, Daniel E. "Thomas Sheridan and the Natural School," SM, XXX (1953), 58-63.

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177 Dissertations Adams, William Wall. "Relationship between the Principles of Acting and Rhetorical Delivery in Eighteenth-Century England." Doctoral dissertation. University of Illinois, 195k* Harder, Jayne Crane . "The Influence of the Teaching of Elocution on Modem English Pronunciation. " Doctoral dissertation. University of Florida, 1956. Woodbury, Lael J. "Styles of Acting Serious Drama on the Nineteenth Century American Stage." Doctoral dissertation. University of Illinois, 195U. Periodicals American Monthly Magazine [Boston]. 1829. American Monthly Magazine [New York]. 1833-1838. American Monthly Magazine and Critical Review [New York]. Edited by h. Biglow. 1817-1319. American Quarterly Review [Philadelphia], 1827-1837. The Albioni A Journal of News, Politics and Literature [New York]. 1822-1825* (The first issue of this journal in the American Periodical Series bears the title* The Albioni or British, Colonial, and Foreign Weekly Gazette for June 22, 1822.) " Critic t A Weekly Review of Literature, Fine Arts, and the Drama [New York]. Edited by William Leggett. 1828-1829* The Gentleman’s Magazine [Philadelphia]. Edited by William E. Burton. mr-mi: — New England Galaxy [Boston]. Published by Joseph T. Buckingham. 1817-1825. The New York Mirror and Ladles’ Literary Gazette [New York]. Edited by Samuel Woodworth (1823) j George P. Morris (182U-181±2)| N. P. Willis and Theodore S. Fay in the l830»s. 1823-18U2. North American Review [Boston], I8l5-l8b0. Polyanthos [Boston]. l805-l8lU. Port Folio [Boston]. Edited by Oliver Oldschool, 1816-1825*

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BIOGRAPHICAL DATA The writer was bom July 8, 1911*, at Gordon, Texas. He received the B. A. decree from McMurry College in 1936. After teaching for six years in the public schools of Texas, ho entered the service of the United States government as Spanish translator. He returned to teaching in 19lt5, holding positions at Augusta Military Academy and the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Texas. He received the M. A. from Northwestern University in 191*8. He has held the position of assistant professor of speech and drama at Trinity University, associate professor of speech and drama at McMurry College, and chairman of the Speech and Drama Department at Virginia Intermont College. From 1950 to 1955, he was employed on the regular staff of the Barter Theatre, State Theatre of Virginia, as Scene Designer. He has also served as a member of the Executive Council of the Southeastern Theatre Conference, and as a member of the Planning Board of the Virginia '> * f, . " 9 . * m t . « . » » *• * » • ft Highland Arts and Crafts Festival. He began his doctoral studies at the University of Florida in 1956 and held graduate assistant ships in theatre from 1956 to 1958* He was awarded a Graduate School Fellowship for the term of 1958-59. He is a member of Alpha Chi National Scholarship Society, the Speech Association of America, and in 1956 was listed in Who’s Who in the South and Southwest .

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i This dissertation was prepared under the direction of the chairman of the candidate's supervisory committee and has been approved by all members of that committee. It was submitted to the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and to the Graduate Council, and was approved as partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy. August 8, 1 959 Dean, Graduate School SUPERVISORY COMMITTEE* 'J ; \ i /—