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termine the degree in which hearing was assisted, by the vibrations excited in the metallic shell of the trumpet, and conveyed by it to the orifice of the auditory duct. The result of these experiments was, that absolute contact of the thing producing the sound with the apparatus for the ear, was necessary, in order that the latter should produce its effects. The ticking of a watch, the scratching of a pin, or even that of a twisted piece of paper was conveyed well by the instrument, when in contact with it; every other avenue for sound being carefully prevented; but the sound was no longer heard when the watch was moved the smallest distance from the instrument; or when the other noises were made in similar circumstances. Mr. Gough thinks that deaf people might acquire some idea of the musical scale, by holding a stick between their teeth, one end of which should be applied to an harpsichord; but that little other assistance can be derived to them from the vibrations of solid bodies.

From other experiments Mr. Gough has ascertained, that the manner in which an ear trumpet performs its office, is by condensing the pulses of the vibrating air, which fall into its cavity, and thereby discharging them with greater effect into the auditory ducts; he therefore thinks that our attention should be turned in future to the probable means of encreasing the condensing power of the instrument, in order to mitigate the inconvenience of deafness.

Mr. Gough mentions that the defects of conical ear trumpets arise from most of the pulses being reflected outwards from the conical sides of the mouth of the tube, so that very few of them are transmitted to the ear through the opposite extremity: This circumstance suggested to him the probability that a trumpet covered with a fine membrane, would assist hearing more than an open one; he tried two or three experiments of tubes, and vessels of other forms, covered with wet bladders, which contracting in drying, thereby acquired a considerable degree of tension: and he found so much assistance from them, as to induce him to strongly recommend to the partially deaf the use of instruments formed on this principle. He thinks that they alone are competent to try experiments for their own relief, in this or in other methods; as persons who possess the sense of hearing in perfection find great difficulty in conducting enquiries of this nature. The instrument of this kind which Mr. Gough proposes, at a rough view of the subject, is to consist of a round box or funnel, furnished with an ear pipe, and having its mouth, or widest aperture covered with a thin membrane, stretched with an uniform force in every direction, like the vellum of a military drum. The pulses which fall from the atmosphere on this membrane will be immediately transmitted by it to the air confined in the box, and their escape from this cavity must evidently be through the ear tube, because the covering of the mouth of the instrument, will not permit them to retnrn by that aperture.

Mr. Gough justly complains that the improvement of ear trumpets has been undeservedly neglected by ilosophers; for few have attended to it since the time of the learned Athanasius Kircher, who mentions several curious experiments, made on this subject, in his Phonurgia, which well deserve the attention of those who wish to investigate the matter farther. A strong argument may be added to those given by Mr. Gough in favour of his proposed acoustic instrument, from the mechanism of the car itself; which has its orifice covered with a membrane similar to that suggested by him; and although it has other obvious uses, yet they by no means prevent its having one similar to that of the membrane of the proposed ear trumpet. A minute knowledge of the mechanism of the internal ear, would probably afford hints for the farther improvement of acoustic instruments; which deserve the attention of ingenious men, not merely for the relief they may afford to the partially deaf, but also for the assistance they may give in conveying orders, or intelligence, to a great distance when used in combination with speaking trumpets: by which the naval service particularly might be much benefited.

Errata in No. 12,-P, 637, line 17, for Thouvenet, read Thouvenel; and line 39, for continuation, read combination.



On the first of August last died, in Tottenham Court Road, in the 76th year of his age, Mr. JOHN WALKER, Author of the Critical Pronouncing Dictionary of the English Language, and several other works of acknow ledged excellence; who deservedly possessed the highest celebrity as a Professor of Elocution, and whose writings have conduced, more than those of any preceding or contemporary author, to facilitate the acquirement of the art he professed, and to establish a standard of correctness for English pronunciation. Of his merits as a contributor to literature and to education, the public are enabled to judge from the vonchers he has left them; but as a member of society he had merits of a higher kind, which those alone can duly estimate who had the pleasure and advantage to be ranked among his friends.


He was born on the 18th of March, 1732, at Colney Hatch, a hamlet on the eastern side of Finchley Common, and in the parish of Friern Barnet. Of his father, who died while he was a child, little is known. His mother came from Nottingham, and was sister to the Rev. James Morley, a respectable dissenting minister, at Painswick, in the county of Gloucester. being left in affluent circumstances, she could only bestow upon her son a common Grammar-school education: nor was he allowed to reap all the advantage which this might have afforded; for he had made but a small progress in the Latin classics, and had scarcely begun Greek, when he was taken from school to be instructed in some trade, by which he might be enabled to gain his future subsistance. Several were tried, but none of them suited his taste; for the education he had received, imperfect as it was, had tinctured his mind with a disposition to letters that created a repugnance to the practice of any mechanical art. At the death of his mother, which happened when he was about seventeen, he was left to pursue his inclination; and feeling within himself that power of speaking which he afterwards employed to so much advantage, he was induced to become a candidate for theatrical fame. He accordingly repaired to the usual nursery for actors, the provincial theatres, at several of which he was successively engaged, and soon found reason to believe that he had not mistaken his talent. His last engagement, previous to his appearance in London, was with Mr. Ward, the manager of the Gloucester company, whose daughter was mother to the celebrated Mrs. Siddons and Mr. Kemble. Having attained such a degree of proficiency as excited a very natural ambition to present himself before a London audience, he applied for an engagement at Drury-lane Theatre, then under the manage ment of Mr. Garrick, which he readily obtained. Here an inferior cast of characters was at first allotted to him: but in the performance of a very trifling part, that of the Distressed Poet, in the farce of the Author, he discovered abilities that attracted the notice of Mr. Garrick, who was induced to advance his salary, and bring him forward in the Theatre; and from that time he usually filled the second parts in tragedy, and those of a grave sententious cast in comedy.

In May, 1758, he married Miss Myners, a comic actress belonging to the same Theatre, who was afterwards celebrated at the other house for her performance of Deborah Woodcock, in the comic opera of Love in a Village, of which character she was the original representative. She was also much admired in the Old Maid, Mrs. Heidelberg, and other characters of a similar east. Immediately after his marriage he was induced by the advantageous offers of Barry and Woodward, to form part of the company that was engaged by them for the opening of Crow-Street Theatre, in Dublin; and in this engagement Mrs. Walker also was included. He was here advanced to a higher rank in the profession, and upon the desertion of Mossop to SmockAlley, he succeeded to many of that great actor's characters.-During the term for which he was engaged in Dublin, he constantly performed in the


summer months at Bristol, where he had formed friendships with some of its most respectable inhabitants. At the expiration of his articles with Barry and Woodward, in June, 1762, he returned to London, and shortly after, both he and Mrs. Walker were engaged by Mr. Beard at Covent Garden Theatre, where he supplied the place of Mr. Sparks, and performed several capital characters, among which his Cato and his Brutus, have been spoken of by competent judges, in terms of very high commendation. He was also considered as particularly excellent in the character of Downright, in Every Man in his Humour. But it is generally admitted by the remaining few who remember him on the stage, and he was equally ready to admit it himself, that his merit was confined, and that though a judicious and correct, he was far from a perfect actor. His gesture was ungraceful, and what is more reremarkable, his enunciation was monotonous. That skill in the modulation of the voice which he possessed in so high a degree when a teacher of elocution, he has often been heard to say was all acquired after he had ceased to be an actor.

During the period of his theatrical carcer, the stage was not the only field on which he exercised his rhetorical talent. From the time of his leaving school, he had employed all his leisure hours in the cultivation of his mind. He had not only endeavoured to supply the deficiency of his education by improving the little knowledge he had acquired of Latin and Greek, but had carried his researches in philosophy and literature to a very considerable extent. Desirous of displaying his reading, and prone to enter the lists with those whom he regarded as the advocates of error, he was led to become a disputant at the Robin Hood, a celebrated debating society of that day, where he always received great applause, and was equally admired both as an eloquent speaker, and as a close and ingenious reasoner. He attributed much of his success as a teacher to the improvement which his mental and oratorical powers had derived from the habit of speaking at this famous practical school of eloquence.

He continued at Covent Garden Theatre till the disposal of the patent, in 1767, to Messrs. Harris, Rutherford, Powell, and Colman; when not being included in the new arrangements, he repaired once more to Dublin; but the theatre in that capital was then in so bad a state that he continued there only one year. He now began to think of adopting a mode of life that should be more suited to his philosophical and literary turn; and after playing during the summer at his old resort, Bristol, in the latter end of the year 1768, he finally quitted the stage.

In January following, he engaged in forming a school at Kensington Gravel Pits, in conjunction with the Rev. James Usher, a Roman Catholic clergyman, author of an ingenious and admired treatise, cntitled, Clio, or a Dissertation on Taste, of an Introduction to the Theory of the Mind, and of some Essays under the title of the Freethinker. The school succeeded; but in consequence of some disagreement with his partner, le quitted it at the expiration of two years, and again found himself under the necessity of seeking a new profession. Having passed so many years of his life as a public speaker, and having since been occupied in the education of youth, he considered himself as not wholly unqualified for giving lessons in elocution: an employment in which it was reasonable to conclude that the estimation in which he had been held as an actor would prove an introduction to pupils. He therefore without much hesitation, determined upon the experiment. He plainly saw that those professors who had gone before him, however skilled in the practice of the art, were unacquainted with it's principles; and he resolved, if possible, to excel them. The monotony which was observable in his enunciation on the stage arose, not from any imperfection in his ear, which was delicately correct, but from his not having paid sufficient attention to the nature and management of the voice. By the assiduity of his endeavours to arrive at excellence, he overcame this defect, and not only acquired a consummate degree of practical skill, but obtained such a theoretical insight into the sources, variety, melody, and correctmess in speech, as enabled him to convey instructions in a more scientific, defi


nite, and intelligible mode than had yet been adopted. His superiority as a teacher soon became manifest. Young men, distinguished both by rank and talent, eagerly availed themselves of his tuition to qualify them for the senate and the bar; and he shortly found himself in such request as to have more applications for instruction than he could possibly comply with. His reputation daily increased, and the acquisition of a competence might be deemed secure.

From his early years he had been attached to the study of the belles lettres, and had devoted a considerable portion of the time that he could spare from his avocations at the theatre to inquiries into the structure of language, and the rationale of grammar. These inquiries he had pursued to a much greater extent since his retirement from the stage; and the profession in which he was now engaged, more especially directed his attention to the orthoepy of the English Language, of which he endeavoured, by tracing it to its principles, to form a consistent and analogical theory. The unwearied attention he bestowed upon the subject, enabled him to accomplish this end, and to demonstrate the errors, inconsistencies, and affectations which had crept into pronunciation, and which had been propagated, rather than corrected, by many of those who had hitherto professed to teach it. He therefore resolved to make the public participators in the result of his researches, and in the year 1772, he published, by way of prospectus, a quarto pamphlet entitled, A General Idea of a Pronouncing Dictionary of the English Language, a work which, though an imperfect attempt had been made by Dr. Kenrick, in his Rhetorical Dictionary, might yet be considered as a desideratum.-He proposed to print it by subscription, and in the prosecution of this object, he received very material assistance from Mr. Garrick, who was always a zealous promoter of the cause of literature, and who, by his active endeavours to procure him subscribers, took occasion to manifest that friendship which he continued to him without abatement to the day of his own death. But his name was as yet unknown in the literary world; and his subscriptions not amounting to such a sum as would warrant his engaging in the expence of printing a work on so extensive a scale as he had proposed in his prospectus, he abandoned his design, and shortly after projected an English Dictionary on a smaller scale, and on a plan not hitherto attempted, in which the words should be arranged according to their terminations; a mode of arrangement, which, though not calculated for general use, possesses many peculiar advantages; and it were much to be wished that there were a Dictionary of every language, constructed upon a similar plan. This work he published in the year 1775, under the title of A Dictionary of the English Language, answering at once the purposes of Rhym ing, Spelling, and Pronouncing, accompanied with some useful aphorisms on pronunciation; and he prefixed a handsome dedication to Mr. Garrick. It has since been republished under the title of A Rhyming Dictionary.

In the same year he visited Scotland, for the purpose of reading Lectures en Elocution at Edinburgh, where he had introductions to most of the literati, and where he not only met with great success, but received many polite and friendly attentions, which were repeated upon a second visit to that country. He ever after retained a marked partiality for the Scottish nation; not more for the civilities and hospitalities that he had personally experienced, than for the clearness of intellect, the spirit of inquiry, and the propriety of conduct, which he observed so generally to prevail among them: nor would he ever hear any illiberal reflections cast upon them by those who allow themselves to be tainted by national prejudice, without warmly expressing his dissent. From Scotland he proceeded to Dublin, where he had already formed so many respectable connexios, and was so much esteemed, that the success which attended his Lectures might readily have been anticipated. He afterwards read them at Oxford, and with so much effect that he received a subsequent invitation from the Heads of several Colleges to give private lectures in that University: an invitation which he accepted, and on this occasion he was warmly recommended to some of the higher graduates by Dr. Johnson, to whom he had been introduced by his friend Mr. Garrick, and who respected his literary talents as much as he esteemed his moral worth,

In the year 1781, he produced his Elements of Elocution; a work which has the unquestionable merit of having been the first practical treatise that had yet been composed on the art of speaking, in which its principles are at once unfolded, simplified and methodized into a system. By analyzing the speaking tones of the voice, and ascertaining the precise mode in which they operate to effect their various impressious on the mind of the hearer, he has introduced order and perspicuity into that which before was indistinct and unintelligible. Preceding writers had laid down rules for recitation, which the learner might implicitly follow, and yet totally pervert the passage recited from the sense which the auther intended to convey, and to the expression of which the instructor vainly imagined that his rules would infallibly guide him. That these authors should have been incapable of framing any written instructions but such as were too indifinite to be adequate to their object, is not extraordinary; for they had as yet obtained but an obscure and imperfect insight into the theory of the voice. They had not made that discovery which was reserved for Mr. Walker, and by means of which he attained the decided superiority he possessed over his predecessors and competitors, of the radical distinction of it's tones into two inflexions, the rising and the falling. Without adverting to this distinction, it is impossible to construct any rules that will not be liable to misapprehension; for it is upon the due management and application of these inflexions, in their simple and in their compound state, that both euphony and correctness depend. For this discovery, of the value and merit of which the public did not for some time appear to be sufficiently aware, he wished to have obtained some honourary notice from the Society for the Encouragement of Arts, in the Adelphi; but it was not considered as coming exactly within the objects of that institution. The nature and operation of the inflexions are. minutely and intelligibly explained, and their various applications illustrated by numerous examples, in the Elements of Elocution; in which he has clearly demonstrated, to every correct ear, not only the truth of his system, but the facility it affords of effecting that improvement in reading and speaking by written rules, which, without it, could only be effectually communicable by oral instruction. Skill in Elocution not being requisite to so large a portion of the community as correctness in pronunciation, the merits of this work have not been so fully appreciated as those of his celebrated Pronouncing Dictionary; though perhaps the inventive powers that appear in the one, entitle it to at least equal praise with the knowledge, industry, and acuteness that are conspicuous in the other.

In the year 1783, he published a pamphlet called Hints for Improvement in the Art of Reading, cons sting of a number of observations that had suggested themselves to him in the course of teaching; thrown together, as the title imports, rather in a detached, than a systematic form. The most useful parts of this pamphlet he afterwards introduced into his Rhetorical Grammer, which he published in 1785, and which, like his Elements, is a complete practical system of elocution, but descending to more minute particulars, and formed into a course of progressive lessons, with a view it's utility in teaching the junior classes in schools; for whom the other work was not so well calculated as for pupils of more advanced years. This book has obtained a very general reception in our seminaries. In 1786, he formed a compilation, which he entitled English Classics, Abridged; consisting merely of extracts from Addison, Pope, and Milton, for the use of both sexes at school. In 1787, he published a pamphlet called The melody of speaking Delineated; for the purpose of still farther extending and illustrating his system of the inflexions laid down in his Elements of Elocution; to which it might be considered as a supplement, and with which the substance of it has been incorporated in a new edition. In 1788, he published his Academic Speaker; which is a selection of parliamentary debates, and extracts from the best authors, both in prose and verse, intended as exercises for improvement in elocution, and which would have little to distinguish it from the many other compilations that have been formed for the same purpose, had he not prefixed to it Elements of Gesture; consisting of plain and easy directions for avoiding those awkward postures usually observable in boys, when reciting: which directions, to make them more completely intelligible, he has illustrated with Copper-plates. The novelty and utility of this idea gave the book a very extensive sale. The same idea has

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