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Title: Duality of Voice
Author: Sutro, Emil
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Duality of Voice" ***

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=Duality of Man's Nature=

                         I.--DUALITY OF VOICE

                              DUALITY OF

                        AN OUTLINE OF ORIGINAL


                              EMIL SUTRO

                   AUTHOR OF "THE BASIC LAW OF VOCAL

                          G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS
                          NEW YORK AND LONDON
                        The Knickerbocker Press

                            COPYRIGHT, 1899
                              EMIL SUTRO

                 Entered at Stationers' Hall, London.

                   The Knickerbocker Press, New York

    "There is nothing in our composition either purely material or
    purely spiritual."--MONTAIGNE.



  CHAPTER                                                           PAGE

    I.--INTRODUCTION                                                   1

          Comments of a Distant Reviewer                              15

          Fragments                                                   22

          Basic Law of Vocal Utterance                                37

          The Voice of the Œsophagus and its Vocal Cords              41

   II.--THE HUMAN VOICE                                               44

          Introspection                                               50

          Making Parts Rigid                                          56

          Extirpation                                                 59

          Movements of the Tongue                                     61

          Simple Sounds                                               66

          Posterior Surfaces                                          68

          Inspiration--Expiration                                     77

          Diaphragms                                                  80

  III.--IMPRESSION--EXPRESSION                                        83

          The Phonograph                                              88

          Stuttering--Stammering                                      92

          Cathode of a Vocal Sound                                   103

   IV.--OUR MOTHER TONGUE                                            110

          National Traits of Character                               112

          The American Nation                                        120

          Centripetal and Centrifugal                                124

          Rotation of Centripetal and Centrifugal Action             130

    V.--NATIONALITY AND RACE DISTINCTIONS                            137

          Idiomatic Expression                                       141

              Origin of Anglo-Saxon Race and Idiom.

              Origin of German Race and Idiom.

          Relationship Supposed to Exist as between the
            German and English Nations                               148

          Language and Motion                                        151

          Difference in their Mode of Breathing as between
            Anglo-Saxons and Germans                                 159

          Rise and Fall, or Rhythm                                   160

          Stress                                                     174

   VI.--PHYSIOLOGY OF VOICE IN RELATION TO WORDS                     178

          Significance of the Term "School" of Singing               187

          Breathing                                                  198

          Song, Singers, and Physiology                              210

  INDEX                                                              223


                           DUALITY OF VOICE


                           DUALITY OF VOICE



By the time this book will appear, nearly six years will have elapsed
since I discovered the voice of the œsophagus, and almost five since I
published a preliminary account of this discovery in a book entitled
_The Basic Law of Vocal Utterance_.[1] This discovery, though the most
comprehensive and far-reaching of any that has ever been made, not
only in regard to the voice, but in regard to the better comprehension
of our nature and our entire human existence, has remained as unknown
to the world as if it had never been made. Yet some day, when its
importance is recognized, it will take rank in the annals of the
history of the human race as second to no other discovery that has
influenced and shaped human thought in the proper recognition of the
origin and the nature of man, spiritual as well as physical, his
abilities and his limits, and his relative position, influence, and
destiny in the economy of the universe.

[1] Edgar S. Werner. New York, 1894.

I have spent so many years of arduous labor on these investigations,
and have become so thoroughly convinced of their truth, that I have
ventured to make these assertions without the slightest compunction,
or fear of final contradiction. Although the facts involved in these
matters entitle me to these declarations, I would not have overstepped
the bounds of modesty in so far as to make them had not my first
experience forced upon me the conviction that the path of modesty in
matters of this kind is not the one to success. I was so impressed with
the exalted position of science, and so apprehensive of my own powers,
that in my former publication I as much as apologized for my temerity
in telling the scientific world things of which it did not have any
previous knowledge. These last four years, however, have so enlarged my
views and given me such a firm grasp and insight, that I no longer fear
any man's judgment. I would, on the contrary, heartily welcome honest
and competent criticism, being convinced that the same would not and
could not but strengthen my position.

As a matter of personal gratification, I am indifferent to success; but
I think the time has come when these matters should not continue to
remain with me alone, but should become the property of all, not for
my sake, nor simply for that of science, but for the sake of truth,
and the benefit of mankind. Had my previous statements been given
the consideration they deserved, other persons, in all probability,
would have made _some_ of the many discoveries, at least, that it
has now been my privilege to make single-handed. Still, the field is
inexhaustible; that which I have discovered being but an index hand to
that which is still to be discovered. Having no reason to doubt but
that I am a properly organized member of the human family, I consider
myself entitled to speak of my personal experience as in like manner
applicable to every other member of that family.

Having found it expedient to frequently address the reader in a
"direct" manner, using the personal pronoun "you" in so doing, I must
ask his pardon for this liberty. In thus addressing him, I trust we
shall be in better rapport; all I shall have to say thus becoming,
in a manner, a confession as from author to reader. While I confide
in him and make him participate in these vital discoveries, I want
him to confide in me, in so far as to take it for granted that all I
shall say is truthfully meant, and that it has been arrived at, not
superficially, but only after the most searching and long-continued
investigations. We will thus become partners in a research as great
as any that has ever agitated man's mind, or filled his soul with
things of great moment. Having penetrated into matters which have
heretofore been considered as occult, or inaccessible to man, my mode
of proceeding will be found interesting as a guide to others wanting to
pursue similar investigations.

In the beginning, it was all brought about by my simple desire, being
a German, to speak the English language in the precise manner in which
native-born persons speak it. For this purpose, I unwittingly pursued
the same course which has been pursued by many others under similar
circumstances; namely, that of introspection. Having been indefatigable
in this course (which others must not have been), after pursuing the
same for some time I was startled by unforeseen discoveries. They were
phenomenal, and far beyond any previous design, hope, or expectation.
After this, my original endeavor to speak the English language
idiomatically correct became a matter of secondary importance. My
eyes once opened, I _continued_ to persevere in this course, and thus
succeeded in penetrating deeper and deeper into matters heretofore
deemed inaccessible to man.

Having pursued investigations by means of introspection now for a
number of years, it has become an easy habit with me, and I can
recognize and pursue processes by which results are obtained through
_inner_ motive powers, almost as plainly as such by which results are
obtained through visible and tangible means. The facts thus observed
and recognized as truths have become so numerous as to be almost
overwhelming, in number no less than in importance; so much so, that
I scarcely know where to turn or where to commence, to be able to
communicate them all to others in due form and sequence. These facts
are not temporary, but are constant; in so far as they can be conjured
up at any time and under any circumstances, and are always of the
_same_ nature. They are of an entirely reasonable, practical, and, for
the most part, mechanical nature; and are explanatory of the exercise
of our faculties and functions, spiritually as well as materially. That
these observations mirror actual proceedings going on within us for the
production of vocal utterance, of breathing, motion, and locomotion,
and the exercise of various other faculties and functions, it will be
my endeavor, by actual demonstration, to prove through this and future

For the purpose of enabling others to pursue a similar course of
studies, I shall take especial pains to point out my course of
proceeding as plainly as I can--such course with me having been
entirely rational, positive, and direct, and without in any sense
disturbing my ordinary mode of existence. The course pursued in
physiologico-psychological studies, in fact, does not differ greatly
from that pursued in the study of purely psychological subjects, which
is also carried on by means of introspection, though it is of a more
positive nature.

When the following was first written (it is nearly two years ago now),
I intended, at an early date, to publish a short treatise on the
subject of the voice only. Since then, however, the same has assumed
greater and greater proportions, embracing many other subjects. Still
I have deemed it best not to change this introduction in consequence

Though not quite ready for another publication (the subject is so great
and my knowledge so inadequate), I do not know that I should have
_ever_ been _quite_ ready, but for several incidents, all happening
about the same time, which have induced me to break the silence I
have observed since the publication of my book, _The Basic Law of
Vocal Utterance_. These incidents, though in themselves apparently
insignificant, have impressed me with the belief that I owe it to
the public and myself to say something in explanation of what I have
already said, and to add thereto (partly, at least) what has since been

In the November, 1896, number of _Werner's Magazine_, I noticed the

    "A good example of the inadequacy of expressional terms in
    discussing vocal topics is shown by Mme. Clara Brinkerhoff
    and Mr. Emil Sutro. Mme. Brinkerhoff has been a contributor
    to this magazine, and has addressed musical bodies, for many
    years. Mr. Sutro is author of the book, _The Basic Law of Vocal
    Utterance_. Both of them maintain that the voice is something
    more or other than an expiratory current of air set into
    vibration by purely physical agencies. Mme. Brinkerhoff thinks
    that the voice is the utterance of the soul, and that the soul
    has its seat in the solar plexus. Mr. Sutro scoffs at the
    theory that the voice is only out-coming air vibrated at or by
    the cords situated in the larynx. He thinks that the ligaments
    under the tongue also serve as vocal cords, and that speech
    is the product of vibrating ingoing air as well as vibrating
    out-coming air. Just what they think the voice is neither of
    these persons makes clear to others. Their failure to express
    their thoughts, however, should not be taken as proof that they
    have not caught glimpses of truths of the greatest importance.
    Still, our impression is that their concepts are too vague
    to be put into intelligible language even if the expressional
    terms at hand were adequate. But, all things considered, the
    fact still remains that discussion will continue to be largely
    useless so long as one person does not know what the other
    person is talking about."

In addition to all this, the proceedings of various societies in New
York alone, judging by their reports also contained in the November,
1896, number of _Werner's Magazine_, which is of unusual interest
throughout, show how great is the interest which, at the present time,
centres around this matter of the voice. In place of saying the "truth"
in matters of the voice, as contained in my book, it would, perhaps,
be more correct to have said, "the first ray of light that has ever
penetrated the gloom and the mystery surrounding the nature of the
voice." In _Werner's Magazine_ it is stated:

    "If Mr. Emil Sutro's book, _The Basic Law of Vocal Utterance_,
    be right, then other writers on vocal science are wrong. His
    statements are startling and revolutionary. He claims to have
    discovered a new vocal cord and to be able to prove that speech
    sounds are the product of inspiration as well as expiration.
    The significance of this is apparent when it is realized that
    all vocal authorities, heretofore, have taught that voice
    is vocalized expiration, and that speech is this vocalized
    expiration articulated into words.

    "The author draws a sharp distinction between the air taken
    for life-purposes and the air taken for speech-purposes. He
    says that vital breathing can and should go on independent of
    artistic breathing, and that the two processes need not and
    should not disturb nor conflict with one another. He combats
    the theory that the lungs are a reservoir of air, which in the
    vocal act is pressed against the vocal cords of the larynx,
    thereby producing tone, which is resonated and modified by the
    parts above the glottis. He maintains that it is a physical
    impossibility to give sufficient force and rapidity to the
    lung air to put muscular and cartilaginous tissue into tonal
    vibration,--that this force and this rapidity can come only
    from the internal atmospheric pressure, and that, therefore,
    preparatory lung inhalation for voice-purposes obstructs rather
    than aids the vocal act. He gives a new explanation of the
    formation of speech sounds, and offers various novel theories.

    "Many readers will hesitate to accept his views, yet as long as
    vocal science is still in a formative condition and involved in
    so much chaos and uncertainty, any attempt at a solution should
    receive careful consideration."

I have cited this able review in full, written by one whose life has
been one act of devotion to the solution of these questions, as it will
at once introduce the reader into the drift of my investigations as far
as they had advanced up to that time.

I have continued to steadily devote myself to the further prosecution
of my investigations, never publishing anything, scarcely ever speaking
on this subject to any one. The subject appeared to me so great and so
far above my ability to master it that I, at first, looked around for
assistance among those I deemed most likely to be able to render it.
But no one had any assistance to offer, no one scarcely seemed even to
comprehend what I was after. Thus, at last, almost in despair, I made
up my mind that I must undertake this task single-handed; and I have
been at it, scarcely without interruption, ever since.

Meanwhile, the play of "Much Ado about Nothing," or "The Farce about
the Larynx," continued to go on bravely all over the world. I have
watched it with a sense of pity, rather than amusement. It appeared
to me, more than anything else, like a game of blind man's buff,
in which _all_ the participants were blindfolded; my own horizon,
meanwhile, being illumined by roseate tints representing continuous new
discoveries, like a May morn before the rising of the sun.

The voice has been treated as a separate mechanical issue, while it is
the outcome of a series of both physical and spiritual issues. While
the old school is reproducing, in its minutest details, the _dead_
branch of a tree, I am portraying, in its majestic proportions, the
broad expanse of a _living_ oak.

These anatomical details may interest scientists; they are valueless
to the singer, as he has no control over the movements of the larynx.
He need but "attack" his note in the right way, and all these muscles,
sinews, cartilaginous tissues, etc., will fall into line, involuntarily
and unsolicited.

Now that I am offering innumerable _proofs_ in corroboration of my
assertions, I want scientists to take these matters _seriously_, and
not to look upon this book, also, as some may possibly have felt
inclined to do in regard to my previous publication, as a "scientific
curiosity" merely. There are no greater problems before the world
to-day than are treated here.

During all these years of unrequited labor, which extend far beyond
the day on which I made my memorable discovery, my personal affairs
meanwhile constantly suffering, with but one notable exception _no_
hand was held out to me in succor. In view of this fact (and it is the
experience of many who, in the privacy of their souls, are struggling
after the light), I want to ask this question: With all the noble
institutions for _learning_, why are there none to assist those who
are attempting to solve questions _to be taught_ for the benefit and
advancement of mankind? True, there are scholarships and fellowships
for students, but they are not available to persons advanced in years
who have duties to perform and families to support. When successful in
the end, their reward--if there is any--often comes too late to be of
any practical value.

Such would be the case with me should any material acknowledgment come
to me now, having of late attained to the leisure I had so much longed
for, thanks to my previous labor and a brave son's devotion and valued
aid and assistance. No man, however, will ever know how long I have
been kept under the ban of purely materialistic endeavors, while these
higher things were occupying my mind and clamoring for recognition. A
sum equal to that representing a single day's expenditure for _falsely_
teaching matters connected with the voice, alone, the world over, not
to speak of other matters of still greater importance, would have
sufficed for a number of years, if not for a lifetime, to place me
in a position to devote myself exclusively to the exposition of the
correct principles underlying these important subjects. As it has
been with me, no doubt it is and always has been with many others in
different fields of research.

Since the publication of my previous book, I have had four years of
continuous experience, during which the statements therein made have
been strengthened and enlarged, so that I am now ready to support
them with an endless array of proof. That book, however, was the
beginning of what some day will be regarded as a greater movement in
the right direction than any previous one, for attaining an insight
into nature's occult work in creating, developing, and sustaining the
living organism, and the exercise of its faculties and functions, more
especially _man's_ faculties and functions. The subject, however, is
of so subtle a nature that it cannot be treated like a mathematical
problem or a chemical analysis; still, I shall do the best I can with
such means as are at my command.

Recently an acquaintance who is interested in vocal culture asked me
how I was getting along, and I answered, telling him something like
what I have said in the preceding. He replied:

"That is the trouble with you Germans. This is a live world, a
practical world; we want facts, results--something we can turn to
account and make use of."

This impatience (and who can blame those who are suffering, or those
who, being young and talented, want to be led into the right path)
throws the door wide open to all kinds of charlatanism--charlatanism
which is honest and charlatanism which is dishonest, the former, being
more readily trusted, often working the greater harm. The best teaching
for the present, in default of a science, is that which is based simply
on experience; the pseudo-science now being taught being worse than no
science at all.

While the exercise of speech is next to universal with all men, no one
has any idea of _how_ it is exercised; the wisest being as much in the
dark as the least informed.

This is what so eminent a man as Oliver Wendell Holmes had to say on
the subject in one of his lectures, delivered not many years before his

    "Talking has been clearly explained and successfully imitated
    by artificial contrivances. We know that the moist membranous
    edges of a narrow crevice (the glottis) vibrate as the reed
    of a clarionet vibrates, and thus produce the human _bleat_.
    We narrow or widen, or check or stop the flow of this sound
    by the lips, the tongue, the teeth, and thus _articulate_, or
    break into joints, the even current of sound. The sound varies
    with the degree and kind of interruption, as the 'babble' of
    the brook with the shape and size of its impediments--pebbles,
    or rocks, or dams. To whisper, is to articulate without
    _bleating_, or vocalizing; to _coo_, as babies do, is to
    _bleat_, or vocalize, without articulating. Machines are easily
    made that bleat not unlike human beings. A bit of India-rubber
    tube tied around a piece of glass tube, is one of the
    simplest voice-uttering contrivances. To make a machine that
    articulates, is not so easy." [The Italics are Dr. Holmes's.]

It is not the _humorist_ Holmes, however, who has said this, as one
would suppose that it was, but it is the writer, scientist, and
thinker, who was in dead earnest when he gave unto the world this
"definition of the gift of speech."

Any comment on my part would but weaken the sense of the ludicrous
this "explanation" of so great a subject, even from a mere mechanical
standpoint, must arouse in the reader. Yet Dr. Holmes's "explanation"
is not any more preposterous than that of many other scientists of the
present day.

Teachers have said that, not being a teacher, I could not know anything
about the voice. As if _they_ had the sole patent right to the voice,
and others held their voices but from them, in fee! I, however, took
the liberty of looking into my own voice and trying to find out whence
it came and what it was made of. It is not much of a voice, to be sure;
yet it has the common attributes of all voices. Besides, I should
like to know who, in truth, _is_ a teacher. He who over a narrow path
follows the footsteps of others, or he who strikes out boldly for the
root and the truth of a matter, and, disregarding precedents, goes down
to the very bowels of the earth, if need be, to bring it to the surface?

The knowledge of even the best of us is not much more than some froth
on the surface of the well of truth. Yet that froth is all these timid
souls have dared to examine. They have not had the courage to dive
down deep into its fathomless flood. Many a truth has been taught by
those who had been considered innocent of any knowledge thereof. I
am one of these "innocents," and, on the whole, am not sorry for not
having been imbued more with the knowledge, or supposed knowledge, of
the present day.

We are so much the slaves of habit that we become reconciled to any
condition, almost, no matter how undesirable or absurd it may be. Thus
biological science has been going along in a rut for centuries, but
little having been ascertained of vital importance; nor could this
have been otherwise, considering the modes of investigation. I was
not surrounded by so many trees that I could not see the woods. My
perspective was as clear as a bird's, that soars above and beyond the
smoke of the city and the dust in the eyes of the heirs of generation
upon generation of anatomical and physiological research, burying
beneath its lumber the clear insight of the soul. Thus, ignorance with
me may indeed have been bliss. Yet I do not want to place myself in
a position as deprecating science, having the highest appreciation
for all its endeavors. I deprecate science only in so far as, dealing
with matter, it attempts to draw inspiration therefrom as to spiritual
issues; and the voice certainly is a spiritual issue.

The following appears in the _Encyclopædia Britannica_, under the
heading of "Animal Magnetism":

"Mr. Heidenhain, after stating that in conformity with the manner
in which one muscle is affected, others become similarly affected,
proceeds to say: 'Probably the reflex excitement would extend still
farther, but I naturally consider it out of the question to try
whether the muscles of respiration would become affected. It is easily
understood that such experiments require the greatest caution and may
be very seldom carried out.'"

Valiant Mr. Heidenhain, brave explorer on a new and "dangerous" field
of research. This is the _Ultima Thule_ which any of these bold
adventurers have endeavored to reach. _My work began where theirs came
to an end._ Though I have not reached the "North Pole," I have gone far
beyond anyone else.


This entire subject is of so subtle a nature that I must warn the
reader to be patient in its study and careful of his judgment. Should
the present work, however, also fail to elicit the attention of
my fellowmen, some thinker, perhaps, of a future generation, upon
discovering a copy of this book on the dusty shelves of an antiquarian,
while looking over its time-stained leaves and after struggling with
its vernacular, may be struck with some remark coinciding with ideas
arrived at by himself and other scientists of that day, and while
commenting upon his "find," may possibly deliver himself thus:

"As the nineteenth century of the Christian era was drawing to a
close, a citizen of the (then) youthful country of the United States
of North America published a book which contained disclosures far in
advance of his time and generation--truths, in fact, concerning life
and the exercise of our faculties and functions, which, if properly
understood, might have eventually led to even the solution of the very
mystery of the soul. Though science at that remote period had made
marvellous strides forward, its endeavors were mostly of a utilitarian
character, or consisted of efforts to explain phenomena from a strictly
materialistic standpoint. The author of this book, however, by dint
of a combination of extraordinary circumstances, which induced him to
search for causes of phenomena within, in place of outside of himself,
had succeeded in breaking through the barriers which had, theretofore,
separated phenomena which were called 'natural' from those which, by
the majority of mankind, were still supposed to be 'supernatural,' or,
at least, unexplainable, unknowable, beyond the ken of man.

"He was thus enabled to penetrate more deeply than any one ever had
before into the knowledge of the mysterious forces which engender and
sustain organic life. Had he been properly understood, the compass of
human knowledge would have been greatly enhanced, and the race itself
liberated from the narrow limits to which it had been confined by the
scientists almost as much as by the theologians (by the doctors of the
body almost as much as by those of the soul) of his day. Some writers
of that period delighted in depicting a state of affairs several
centuries ahead of their time. The changes which were supposed to have
taken place, however, had reference to material developments only, and
did not contemplate any advancement of a purely spiritual nature.

"Though the founder of the Christian religion, and other men of a
high order of intellectual and moral insight, had laid down rules
for 'deportment' which to a great extent still govern the world; in
regard to a spiritual insight, the dearth, the waste, the discord, the
distraction, the unrest, the 'Weltschmerz' (as the Germans called it),
the despair of science, which knew but and dealt but with the baser
part of our existence, unable to penetrate into the higher, was then at
its height. The 'miracle' had ceased to exercise its influence over the
intellectual classes, and knowledge had not taken its place.

"This writer, however, through his discoveries, had opened up the
way--made a beginning--to a penetration of science into the realms of
the spirit; and a substitution of faith based on _facts_ for one based
on tradition and fancy only. Religion and science, having been factors
of a different, almost antagonistic, order, thus at that early period
already might have become reconciled and united through _knowledge_; as
to some extent, though by different means, they have become since.

"In thus gaining more knowledge, more light regarding the motive
powers which govern our existence, the shackles which had overwhelmed
the soul would have long since fallen to the ground, and a _truly_
brotherly spirit would have prevailed among all classes and peoples
in place of much of the prejudice, the insincerity, the overbearance,
the animosity, the cruelty, and the insanity even of the believers in
(or inheritors of) one spiritual theory (often misnamed religion) as
against those of another.

"The world's thought, just previous to that time, had made great
strides forward through the recognition of the laws of _evolution_,
which culminated in one master mind, through great elaboration and
by citing numerous examples, assigning cogent and necessary reasons
therefor. The world should have been ripe, therefore, for this _greater
movement_ which it was now called upon to face; a movement which went
beyond the mere recognition of phenomena and penetrated into _a priori_
causes. Strange to say, it either could not or would not understand;
being still bound by fetters which held it in a vise-like embrace of
previously conceived ideas as to the impossibility of penetrating into
matters of this nature, and which prevented it from even _testing_ the
numerous proofs offered by this writer as to the correctness of his
assertions. His investigations, if properly understood, would have
brought spirituality _home_ to us; they would have made it accessible
to us. It would have ceased to be a phantom, and would have become a
reality, a friend on whom we could count, in place of a mysterious and
incomprehensible stranger.

"Beginning with discovering the dual nature of the voice, the writer
of this book opened up the way to the comprehension of the mystery of
man's dual nature in _all_ its relations. He made the discovery that
the œsophagus is of equal importance with the trachea in carrying on
the process of respiration and in exercising the faculty of vocal
expression; that for these purposes œsophagus and trachea are to an
equal degree directly amenable to the influence of the atmospheric
air; that the dual nature of organic beings in general, and of man
in particular, is represented by the hemispheres of the thorax and
the abdomen; that the former in its entirety represents spiritual
and the latter in its entirety material issues; that the trachea and
its branches on the one hand, and the alimentary canal on the other,
respectively represent these issues more directly; that the fusing
and blending of these issues has for its result the phenomenon called
life; that the severance of these issues has for its result the
phenomenon called death; that there are thus positive limits, place,
and surroundings assigned to material and immaterial issues within the
sphere of our bodily existence, and that combined they pervade our
entire system; that all phenomena of life, especially all phenomena
of a spiritual nature, and among these more ostensibly those of vocal
utterance, owe their origin to these issues momentarily joining hands;
that in so doing there is a transitory fusion, which for an endless
number of purposes is brought about in an endless number of ways.

"He discovered further that the larynx, previously supposed to be the
_only_ instrument for the production of sounds, has its counterpart
in the 'replica' (the 'larynx' of the œsophagus), located beneath
the tongue and represented by the frænum linguæ and surrounding
cartilaginous tissues; that no vocal sound can be produced except
by the coöperation of the larynx with the replica. He discovered
the circulation of, and the origin of vocal sounds, and many other
important issues.

"Through his discoveries, if properly recognized, _all_ the sciences
dealing with life would have been placed upon a new and far more
reasonable and comprehensible basis than they had rested upon before.

"These discoveries would have tended to undermine the basis of every
materialistic school of philosophy, and to place those with spiritual
and ideal propensities upon higher and firmer ground. Had they been
properly appreciated and further expanded by others it would have
eventually become possible to develop _all_ our faculties to the full
extent of their ability, and to correct faults, errors, and defects
caused by wrong education or heredity, through the application of laws
at the very root of our existence; laws which were then, and in fact to
a great extent are to this day unknown.

"It may, in fact, be said without exaggeration that his discoveries,
which were all made within a period not exceeding five years,
outweighed in importance all other discoveries combined relating to
physiologico-psychical issues made previous to his time."

I can see many a reader smile after perusing the foregoing, and perhaps

"Here is a Jules Verne of a new type come to deal with a novel subject."

Yet the time will come when the reader will cease to smile, and look
upon these matters _seriously_. I do not mean, however, to throw down
a gauntlet to science on these momentous questions in _a vaunting
and reckless spirit_; but come as a petitioner rather, asking it to

My time and generation are but like a flash from the orb of eternity,
but the laws I have discovered are as eternal as that orb itself. With
all the scientific investigations now going on, there has not even an
approach been made which might have led up to them; nay, not a hint
or a hypothesis, even, leading toward the same. Science, in fact, had
nothing to do with them; the first man might have made them almost as
well as the latest. They are all grappling with matter, while I have
grasped the spirit that is in, yet above, all living matter.

In making these discoveries I have bent a sail upon the crafts
of physiology and psychology, which have been aimlessly, almost
hopelessly, drifting on the shallow waters of the examination of
isolated material phenomena. This sail will enable them to reach the
broad expanse of the ocean, where they will be able to make soundings
in its deepest waters.

Professor Huxley declared that during his fifty years of experience as
a student and teacher not one thing really _new_ had ever come under
his observation. Had he lived to become acquainted with these facts I
feel confident he would have declared them to be new.

The venerable Professor Virchow, the other day, in an address before
the International Congress of Physicians at Moscow, made use, in
substance, of these words: "The cell is immortal--there must have
been a previous cell for its generation. On this fact as a basis
(ascertained by the aid of the microscope) the science of the coming
century may securely rest."

And he set this down as the greatest achievement of science in respect
to the recognition of the phenomena of life. Yet there is nothing
more fallible than the microscope in ascertaining facts regarding
the knowledge of life. It may to some extent reveal the essence of
_matter_, but it is not given to it to assist in recognizing the
principles which govern life and the _spirit_ of life.


This book, in a sense, is a personal narrative, and necessarily must
be so, giving an account, as it does, of observations in experiments
upon myself. In making these experiments I have endeavored to treat
myself impersonally, as a subject, so to say, placed at my disposal
for experimental purposes; my ego having been the object as well as
the subject of my investigations. In occasionally speaking of the
results thus obtained in a eulogistic manner, this should not be looked
upon as self-praise, therefore, but rather as an impersonal mode of
describing what has come under some one's observation--this "some one"
being myself. I want to place the matters I have observed before the
reader in the right light, and do not hesitate to say or fear to say
just what I think to be the truth. If I were to wait for others to say
these things the reader who does not comprehend their latitude as I
do might have to wait a long time before he could grasp the subject
in its entire importance. I want to say this much as an apology and a
vindication for frequent indulgences in apparent self-eulogism.

I have another motive for making such remarks; viz., the desire of
rousing the scientific world from its apathy regarding these matters.
These laudatory remarks may wound its pride, and possibly arouse its
ire,--more especially in view of their coming from a layman,--and
thus induce it to study these matters, if but for the purpose and
with the view of controverting them. I would hail such an endeavor
with pleasure, not having the slightest fear of its ability to
successfully controvert any of the vital facts I have ascertained, and
whose correctness I expect to prove by a great array of facts with
accompanying proofs.

When I first began to make these studies, I made numerous notes as new
features happened to present themselves to my mind. I have encountered
no inconsiderable difficulty in sifting this material so as to present
my experiences in as connected and consecutive a manner as possible.
In this, however, I have only partially succeeded; nor have I been
able to altogether avoid repetitions. For these shortcomings I must
plead a want of time. For some time past, however, my experiences have
accumulated so rapidly that I have ceased to take any notes whatever,
trusting to my memory that these mental notes may be recalled at the
proper time. No doubt some things, even of importance, have thus been
lost sight of. Still, while pursuing similar studies, they may in the
course of time turn up in some one else's mind.

In looking over some of my notes I have found things which I have
deemed worthy of preservation. I let some of these follow in a
promiscuous manner. This, it must be admitted, is not in accordance
with scientific usage. But I am not a scientist, simply an amateur;
and take advantage of the privileges this fact gives me. If I were to
conform to strict scientific rules and "etiquette," years might elapse
before I could get these matters into proper shape. It will always
remain a mystery to me, however, why these things should have come to
me at all--so unworthy, so unadapted to their proper exposition. In
order to do them justice, they should have come to one complete master
of his time, young, strong, possessed of a wide range of knowledge and
a deep insight.

I will now let follow some of the matters I have spoken of:

My personality and my work must go together, until others relieve me
of the latter by making it _their_ work to the same extent that I have
made it mine. You cannot separate the fiddle from the fiddler, neither
having any significance apart from each other, except by the fiddler
perpetuating that which the fiddle produces--the composition,--by
writing it down, thus transmitting it to others. This I am trying to do
by this book.

No doubt some of the things which have come under my observation in
some form or other are already known to science, and are, therefore, a
corroboration, or an explanation, only, of things already known. With
me, nevertheless, _all_ is original; and I may therefore justly claim
that if any of these matters have been discovered before, I, at least,
have _re-discovered_ them.

If I were an institution possessing a guaranty of continued existence I
might value the present lightly, knowing a future would come when these
matters will be fully understood. Being a creature of the present,
however, which may be turned into the past--especially at my time of
life--at almost any moment, these matters should become known at the
earliest opportunity; some of them being of so subtle a nature that
they may require personal explanation and illustration. They have been
hidden from us in the past; should they fail to be made known now, _the
same opportunity may not arise again for centuries_.

       *       *       *       *       *

I do not claim any special sagacity over others for having made these
discoveries, and disbelieve altogether in miraculous interposition. Yet
I do not want to be prejudiced in any direction.

We are surrounded by the mysterious and the miraculous; and that which
is called "natural" as a rule is far more mysterious than that which is
called "miraculous."

"Truth is stranger than fiction"; which is undoubtedly true. We can
imagine that only of which we have at least _some_ knowledge, but there
are realms of truth beyond us of which we have _no_ knowledge. Besides,
these revelations are of so extraordinary a nature that I cannot
altogether close my eyes to the fact that I _may have been led on to
them_ by agencies beyond my personal power of volition. I will cite but
one reason why such an idea might be justly entertained by me.

That which originally led me on to these investigations, as already
mentioned, was the simple desire to speak the English language just as
native-born persons speak it. Although I eventually became aware of the
fact that this was next to impossible, yet I persisted in this endeavor
to such an extent that I spent far more time on it than it would have
deserved had I been _convinced_ that I would be finally successful.
Again and again I said to myself, "This is a foolish, absurd, unworthy
undertaking for a person of intelligence"; the next minute I was at
it again, trying to utter this sound or pronounce that word in the
"correct English fashion."

I want to ask, What was it that impelled me to thus persist, almost
against my wish, will, and better insight? When, after many years
of this almost wanton endeavor, I discovered the dual nature of the
voice, I could not help but think that an influence beyond myself had
been exercised to impel me to persist in these efforts, which were
then crowned with a success of a different order, and far beyond any
previous expectation. _I then found what I had been after unknown
to myself._ To simply say I was "infatuated" would not explain this
strange adherence to what for a long while looked like a vain and
hopeless undertaking.

I am aware that for me to say, as I have just now said, "I cannot
altogether close my eyes to the fact that I may have been led on by
agencies beyond my personal power of volition," may expose me to
ridicule in the eyes of some persons; besides being a contradiction to
my other convictions. Yet I say so deliberately and am quite willing to
abide by the consequences. It is a case of the duality of our nature,
which impels me to take a naturalistic or biogenetic view of things in
one direction, yet forces me to take a spiritualistic or abiogenetic
view of them in another direction. I do not comprehend those who under
_all circumstances_ are capable of pursuing either the one direction or
the other.

       *       *       *       *       *

I might say I have been on a prospecting tour to a _new_ country, where
I found the outcroppings of numerous veins of precious ore. These veins
are _true fissure veins_, penetrating, as they do, into the very bowels
of the earth; and it will take centuries to exhaust them in all their
_dips, spurs, and angles_.

       *       *       *       *       *

It will be a matter of surprise that a layman, one not of the tribe
which make science the pursuit of their lives, should have penetrated
into these mysteries. It must not be lost sight of, however, that
science, as a rule, deals with things visible and tangible, while the
voice is a sensation which, regarding its origin in the ego, cannot be
observed outside of the ego. One may by close observation trace the
origin of one's voice to its innermost channels, and thus learn much
about the subtlest characteristics of its nature, a proceeding to which
it would not be possible to subject any one else's voice. The same
conditions prevail in regard to other sensations which have also come
under my, at least, partial observation.

       *       *       *       *       *

Science, as a rule, has been satisfied with the observation of results,
of phenomena, without attempting to penetrate into causes, which seemed
to be unalterably hidden from its gaze. Special features, however, of
the voice have been ably and successfully observed and described by
many eminent persons. To these I have not given any attention, partly
because they were beyond my sphere, and partly (not being a musician)
because they were beyond my power of observation.

       *       *       *       *       *

In looking for the voice, anatomy in its minute examinations of the
larynx has but opened up a grave for us to gaze into. And what have we
beheld? A skeleton of the voice's body--of its soul not a trace. This
skeleton, to boot, is but a _portion_ of the mechanism of the voice;
of its other parts, equally important, science has not even known that
they were in existence. Like a palæontologist or an archæologist, I
have dug up these other parts or fragments from all around; some were
found close at hand, others quite a distance off. I have skilfully put
them together, and have thus constructed a fairly _complete_ torso, or
framework of the voice. I say "torso," though I may justly claim more
than that, having again infused the soul into it which had fled from
it; and, see, it has become a _living thing_.

That the wonderful apparatus contained in the throat is for a purpose
there cannot, of course, be any doubt. It is but partly for the
purpose attributed to it, however, and, until we better comprehend
this part-purpose, especially in view of the fact _that we have no
control over its mechanism_, it will be best, as far as singers and
elocutionists are concerned, to surrender it to and leave it with the

To the ultimate aim of science--the knowledge of life--I have
contributed matters of a nature deemed beyond the province of the
knowledge of man. Was it ever intended that they should be known? On
more than one occasion I have been puzzled to know whether to go on
with these investigations; whether I had a _right_ to go on with them.
Still, I was sustained by the fact that I had been _led on to them_.
For what other purpose could this have been done but for that of
making the results thereof known? They could serve no good purpose in
remaining locked up _within myself_.

It is my belief that the ordinary course of events is never interfered
with; but that _great_ events may be inaugurated by unseen agencies and
guided by unseen hands. The responsibility which has devolved upon me,
incompetent and unprepared as I am, is almost too great; still, I must
try to discharge it to the best of my ability.

       *       *       *       *       *

I have no personal motive of either fame or fortune. At one time I
would have been pleased with such results; now it is too late. If not
in my day, some day, I trust, some one will read and comprehend; some
one will not mind the trouble of investigation. It is not likely that I
shall _forever_ remain the only "seeing one."

It would have been better if I had not published a line for at least
ten years. It would have taken that long to say what I want to say,
_properly_. My time is too uncertain, however, to run such a risk. My
friends are falling to the right and left by the roadside. I must be up
and doing; must make a beginning at least.

We must be satisfied with reaching matters approximately, and argue by
analogy to some extent; and also hope that others will take them up and
push them along a little farther than we have been able to do. Perhaps
in the course of time a perfect insight may be arrived at.

       *       *       *       *       *

The community of man is a necessity; a separate existence, an anomaly.
We are dependent and interdependent upon one another. Man cannot
escape his fellow-man. In the remotest desert his spirit is still in
communication with him. If it were not so, who would not at times want
to flee all, escape from all?

I have but one fear--inability, for some reason or other, to finish
my work. I feel like the heroine of a celebrated German novelist,
travelling about with a trunk filled with gold, which she distributed
among the _deserving poor_ as fast as she came across them. Meanwhile
she was in constant fear lest her life should ebb out before all was
distributed, and its precious contents _lost_ to those for whom they
were intended. If there were any way of imparting this knowledge
other than by writing it down, I would gladly resort to it. But how
can I reach the few who are capable of and willing to take up these
questions, except by communicating them to the many? These "few" will
be found in all parts of the world, for these truths apply to _all_
men, independent of sex, race, or country.

       *       *       *       *       *

My cry is not for recognition. My personality might be blotted out,
like that of millions of others, without its being noticed, yet, by
virtue of this trust which has been reposed in me, what a loss it would
be! My cry is for investigation and the coöperation of others, so that
this work may be carried on independent of myself. Meantime, I cannot
transfer this task to others. I must first explain all that it is in my
power to explain. I can then shift it from my shoulders onto theirs.
They must be educated up to it before they can take hold of it as I
have taken hold of it.

       *       *       *       *       *

When I first announced my discoveries, I gave all I possessed,
supposing others would see as I saw and comprehend as I did; having
no doubt but that the world would at once acknowledge their truths
and accept their precepts. I have since found that the world can get
along very comfortably with a vast amount of want of knowledge. I
therefore made up my mind not to be quite so rash again in making it my
beneficiary, not till I was better prepared for the purpose; this other
book of mine having been finished rather hastily in the erroneous
belief that this knowledge was at once and imperatively needed.

Since publishing this previous book I have also found, which I did
not know at that time, that my very mode of investigation (by means
of introspection) was new; that no one had ever looked into matters
of this kind in the manner I had; besides, it seems strange that in
this age of keen investigation of the most trivial matters, no one
should have deemed it worth his while to look into these more important

Regarding the anatomical investigations of the larynx, and anatomical,
coupled with physiological, investigations generally, let me ask a
question: Supposing a palace with a million apartments, each one in
succession more luxuriously furnished than its predecessor, would they
avail anything to its _sole_ inhabitant, if that inhabitant were blind?

We have obtained a fair conception of the wonderful palace, the human
body, its numberless apartments and their luxurious furnishings, but
do not comprehend their meaning, except in a remote and unsatisfactory
mechanical sense. _We_ are the blind that inhabit it. Most of these
apartments will remain meaningless to our understanding until we
ascertain what use the sovereign, the soul, which reigns therein, is
making of them, not only mechanically, but _spiritually_ as well. For
the soul lives in them all, though it is supposed that it lives only in
its throne-room of the brain and that it never descends from the throne
set up in the same.

Just here biologists have blundered, trying to get hold of _psyche_ by
pursuing matter bereft of life; or investigating life in other beings
instead of that inherent in themselves. The vivisection of all the
frogs in the world will not give us the first knowledge of the frog's
soul; certainly not of _our_ soul. The knowledge of the anatomical
construction of the larynx has brought us no nearer the knowledge of
the mystery of the voice than that of the brain has brought us to that
of the soul. We must understand the process by which the mechanism of
the brain is set in _motion_ before we can begin to understand our
mode of thinking. We must comprehend the manner in which a musical
instrument is to be used before we can begin to draw music from the
same. And so must we understand the spirit which moves the mechanism of
the voice (of which so far we have known but a single factor), if we
want to understand our mode of using it.

Does any one seriously think that by photographing vocal sounds,
or passing a mirror down his throat and watching the movements of
the vocal cords, he will observe anything that will lead him to an
intimate knowledge of nature's subtle process by which vocal sounds are
produced? As well look at the face of a clock and see its hands move,
and then say you have arrived at a knowledge of the hidden intricate
mechanism of the works of the clock. The mechanism of the instrument of
the voice is a thousand times more intricate than that of a clock. It
lives, it breathes, it moves, it expands and contracts, it rises and
falls, it gathers, it gives--now here, now there.

Starting from the supposition that life is too subtle, too intangible
a thing to have its innermost operations disclosed by the clumsy work
of our hands or the dull vision of our eyes, though increased in
power a thousandfold, I matched the subtle work of my voice with the
subtler of my brain, and thus, undisturbed by any extraneous agency
whatever, watched the process by which, first, simple mechanical, then
articulated sounds, and finally sounds linked together into speech, are
produced. In so doing I traced sounds through the labyrinth of numerous
avenues to their original sources--_the organism of all our faculties,
instead of being confined to their end organs, being widespread over
our entire system_.

       *       *       *       *       *

Physiologists as a rule are satisfied with the _observation and
exposition_ of phenomena. I have endeavored to _explain_ phenomena. I
have gone "behind the returns," as politicians say. I have lifted the
mysterious veil, and have obtained glimpses at the process of life. In
this manner the voice of the œsophagus was first discovered, which,
in logical sequence, has carried me from one discovery to another.
Once in the confidence of nature, it freely opened up to me its heart.
Comprehending one thing led me on to the comprehension of others.

There is no study which is as fascinating as that pursued by
introspection. It is self-compensating in the highest degree; all
facts thereby evolved being the logical sequence of others previously
ascertained. Or, if not always in sequence, they all fit into the same
system; everything that has been ascertained being a stone which was
waiting to be placed in a certain niche to fulfil a certain purpose
in the construction of a harmonious edifice. There was no waste, no
material entirely lost; nor will there be at any future time. If
similar studies will be pursued by those specially fitted for the
purpose, the time may not be far distant when there will not be an
atom of our material existence whose meaning and purpose will not be
understood. The laws which I claim to have discovered will assist in
this accomplishment, as they are of so broad a nature that they may be
said to form the substructure to forces and conditions which are at the
very root of our existence. I do not pretend to say that in this little
book they have been properly treated, nor that I possess the ability,
under the best of circumstances, to thus treat them. I have but stated
what has come under my observation, and have stated it in as simple and
direct a manner as my instinct and my ability have taught me to state

I have been up on Mount Washington to see the sun rise. It was a
beautiful picture; still, there were clouds in the way which here and
there obscured my vision, as was to be expected from the unwonted
height to which I had risen, and the distant horizon.

       *       *       *       *       *

I am not writing for a class, but for the multitude to which I belong,
and of which, in its aspirations, its hopes, its sincerity, and its
ignorance regarding _specific_ knowledge, I form a part. Hence my
thoughts are its thoughts and my language its language. There will be
no difficulty, therefore, for _all_ to understand me and to profit by
my experience.

My observations result in the triumph of the sensation, the feeling
(common to all), over the exact sciences (known to but few). Science,
for the most part, is satisfied with dissecting or analyzing. My
endeavor has been to construct; to form the whole out of parts instead
of reducing the whole into parts. My guide has been instinct coupled
with common-sense,--that rarest of all the senses in spite of its name.
How far it has guided me aright, it will be the province of science to

I may be asked why, in treating upon so "simple" a subject as the human
voice (my only endeavor in the beginning), I want to move heaven and
earth, and press them into my service. My answer is, Wherever I touched
the subject of the voice, I found it to be in correlation with all
other subjects.

My great desire now is, that I may be granted the time and retain the
ability to write out all I have ascertained; while my greatest wonder
is, that these things should have waited for me at all to be made
known; why they should not have been discovered centuries ago. My eyes
once opened, I found them lying about within the easy reach of my arm
and the mere assistance of my pick and shovel, like precious ore in
a newly discovered mining country. I had but to open the lid of the
mysterious casket which had been intrusted to me, and all these great
truths escaped from the same; not to disappear, however, as they did
in the fable, but to remain with me and to be made known through me to
the world.

       *       *       *       *       *

The best part of my life has been spent in this, my adopted country.
Though I experience no difficulty in expressing myself in the English
language, still it is not my native tongue, and I sometimes feel as if
I might have said some things better if I had said them in German.

       *       *       *       *       *

Looking at the many volumes written on the subject of the larynx alone,
and considering that during all this time its associate, the replica,
without whose assistance _not one_ vocal sound can ever be uttered, has
remained unknown, though in plain sight and "in everybody's mouth," one
cannot help but think of Goethe's lines:

    "Ein Kerl der speculirt
      Ist wie ein Thier, auf duerrer Haide
    Von einem boesen Geist im Kreis herum gefuehrt,
      Und ringsumher liegt schoene gruene Waide."

    ("A theorist is like unto a beast
      On barren soil by evil sprite led round and round
    Within a narrow circle, though beyond there is a feast
      Of pasture green on fertile ground.")


My earlier work, entitled as above, was written under peculiar
circumstances. After discovering the fact that sounds proceed from
beneath as well as from above the tongue, light streamed in upon
me on so many subjects I had previously attempted to solve that I
was almost dazed thereby. I thought it my duty to make these matters
known, and attempted to describe them as they appeared to me. They
were all perfectly clear to me, and even to-day there is scarcely a
thing I then said that does not wholly stand its ground. Still, to-day,
viewing things from an advanced point of view, much of that which was
then expressed pragmatically, almost in a single sentence, and which
then appeared to be sufficient, I am convinced requires considerable
elaboration and elucidation.

Take, for instance, this dictum: "The manner in which we breathe for
speech is by raising and lowering the tongue," etc. This is perfectly
correct, and positive proof will be advanced hereafter as to its being

I thought these matters would be readily understood, not knowing at
that time that between the manner in which I had reached conclusions
and the one in which conclusions had been reached by others who had
also made a study of these matters, there was a vast difference.
Unknown to myself I had lived a life of my own. I had given myself
up to these matters in a manner no one ever had before; having been
everlastingly at it, holding on with a tenacity that knew no restraint.
In this manner I wrung facts from nature that may have never been
intended to be revealed.

There was something Faust-like in it all, and I sometimes shudder at
my own temerity. Still, I had no such thought when I so persistently
continued trying to fathom the mystery of vocal sounds. Viewing it
in its proper light it was a narrow and every-day undertaking. I was
fairly staggered, therefore, when I reached such unlooked-for results.

The reader, however, may ask, and I feel it incumbent upon me, as well,
to tell him, What was the nature of these results? Wherein consisted
these discoveries? They covered a large field and whole range of
knowledge. They had reference more particularly to vocal sounds. These,
in fact, had almost exclusively occupied my mind for many years. These
apparently simple factors, vocal sounds, I have since ascertained are
the outcome of laws, forces, and agencies, and combinations of all
these, which largely make up the sum and substance of our spiritual
existence. The direct nature of vocal sounds, therefore, cannot be well
treated upon till some understanding has been arrived at of the nature
of the elements out of which they are composed. I was rash enough to
attempt to explain them, especially the consonant sounds, in this
little book of mine, from a standpoint I had then arrived at. Others
have tried to explain them from a much narrower standpoint still. From
that standpoint I offered explanations as to our mode of speaking,
breathing, as to defective speech, etc. Although this was an advanced
standpoint, and well worthy the consideration of scientists, it was a
standpoint far beneath the one I have arrived at since.

In attempting to scale a mountain I had reached a point from which I
could overlook the valley immediately beneath my feet. I have since
gone up much higher. Yet there are towering heights still above me
which I shall never be able to reach. From this it will be seen how
difficult it would be for me to state in a few paragraphs what I had
actually ascertained. That book, however, will increase in value
in the course of time, not only for the knowledge it contains, but
historically, so to say, as the beginning of an evolution which, it
seems to me, will eventually embrace all sciences in regard to man;
when treated, as they will be, from a standpoint of inner as against
one of outer consciousness, from the standpoint of the soul and the
heart, as in the inadequacy of our expressions I have to call them, as
against that of the head and the senses.

I have since arrived at a plan according to which these matters will
be treated in a more systematic manner. In _this_ volume, besides
many novel subjects, I have been enlarging upon and elucidating many
superficially mentioned in my book, _The Basic Law of Vocal Utterance_.
Still, the matters treated upon even in _this_ book cover so much
ground, and had to be condensed to such an extent, that many of these
also will require further enlargement and elucidation. This will be
attempted to be done in future publications. Meantime I trust these
matters will be taken in hand by others, who by their writings will
relieve me of some of this additional labor. Take it all in all, there
is so much of this work that I feel as if I had swallowed the ocean and
was now called upon to give an account of its contents.


Among the discoveries mentioned in my former publication one stands
out most prominent, and it is the basis of all my other discoveries;
namely, "that the voice is of a dual nature." I had ascertained that
sounds circulate around the radix of the tongue; that they, or rather
the air wave which carries them, enters either at the upper surface of
the tip of the tongue and recedes back, to come out again from beneath
its lower surface, or vice versa. I had also ascertained that the
former process is the English, the latter the German, for breathing and
vocal expression.

I was convinced that this signified a circulation of vocal sounds; and
though I had finally also reached this conclusion and intimated it,
namely, "that we breathe and speak through the œsophagus," I did not
express it in so many words, as I meant to leave this expression for a
future publication. I was at first under the impression that both waves
belonged to the trachea, the one that was ingoing as well as the one
which was outgoing.

Meantime I had discovered the "larynx or voice-box to the œsophagus,"
but considered this at first also as belonging to the trachea. I
thought inspiration and ingoing sounds belonged to the vocal cords of
the trachea, expiration and outgoing sounds to this "new" vocal cord
located beneath the tongue. To study these first attempts, by which
I was trying to find my way, and which culminated in these wonderful
discoveries, I presume would be of interest to the student. I can here
mention only the main points.

I have found beyond a doubt, and my future statements will more fully
establish this fact, that the frænum linguæ and the parts of the mucous
membrane surrounding the same are relatively of the same nature in
regard to the voice of the œsophagus that the vocal cords and other
parts of the larynx are in relation to that of the trachea.

In contradistinction to the larynx, I named these entire surroundings
the "replica," as, in conjunction with the tip of the tongue resting
upon the same, they conform to the shape of the oral cavity, of which
in their general appearance they are almost a counterpart. In a
similar manner I named the special part thereof, which "regulates" the
intonation, the "vocal lip," in contradistinction to the vocal cords of
the larynx, which perform the same service for the voice of the trachea.

After making such positive assertions regarding the replica as I did in
my previous publication--now more than four years ago--I was more than
surprised that no one should have deemed it worth his while to look
into the value of these assertions. If any one had, he could not have
helped but acknowledge their correctness. It is but necessary to utter
any vocal sound whatsoever, either vowel or consonant, and while doing
so watch the vocal lip and the frænum, to become at once convinced that
their motions are of precisely the same order as those of the larynx
and the vocal cords.

So many have spent year after year upon the difficult and "fruitless"
endeavor to study the motions of the larynx; while here is an
opportunity plainly before every one's eyes to study, without effort,
the most interesting phenomena in voice production. We must be obliged
to seek for a thing high and low before we deem it worthy of our



What is the voice--a spirit, or "an expiratory current of air set into
vibration by purely physical agencies"? It does not seem to me to be
either, but something which is of the nature of both: our dual nature,
embodied in the sounds of speech; our body and soul joining hands to
produce the miracle of the voice. Regarding the materialistic view
quoted above, which is held by most of the investigators, who make the
larynx their _point d'appui_, I think that if there is anything in our
composition or emanating therefrom that is _not_ produced by "_purely_
physical agencies," it is the voice.

In my opinion there is nothing purer, more "spiritual," in the world
than a beautiful voice. Did you ever _see_ a spirit? Perhaps not. But
you have often _heard_ one. You hear them daily, hourly, constantly;
other spirits as well as your own--the spirits represented by the
voice; the soul incorporated in the sounds of speech. When you
converse, it is soul to soul; when you hear an anthem sung, it is the
soul of the singer to the soul of the universe. The soul reveals itself
most prominently through the voice when there is anguish in it, or joy;
tears or laughter; love or hate.

An attempt to get at the truth in matters of the voice is an attempt at
getting at the truth in matters of life. If you will tell me _all_ that
a vocal sound is, I will tell you what your soul is.

To examine into the anatomical construction of the larynx, to watch
it physiologically and learn to understand the motions of the vocal
cords in their relation to vocal sounds, is not much more than looking
at the dial of a clock (a simile already used, but worth repeating).
The movements of the hands will give you _no_ cue to the construction
of the intricate works hidden behind the face of the clock. Nor will
the careful examination and observation of the "dials" which serve the
voice of the œsophagus in the same manner as those of the larynx serve
the voice of the trachea, measurably increase the knowledge of vocal
phenomena. I do believe, however, that, inasmuch as the movements of
the replica, the frænum, and the vocal lip fit into and complement
those of the larynx and its vocal cords, and vice versa, lessons of
great benefit to the knowledge and the improvement of vocal utterance
may be learned, _after_ we have once begun to understand what these
movements imply.

That we cannot now derive any benefit from the observation of these
motions is due to the fact that they are _reflex_, _involuntary_,
_uncontrolled_ and _uncontrollable_ by the will. Or, as Mme. D'Arona
expresses it:

"They are not the _cause_ of the perfect tone, but are simply acted
upon by the cause."

After having become acquainted with the cause of these motions, and
having learned to control it in the interest of pure and perfect tone,
the movements of the larynx and the replica will become of value to
us as "indicators" of the correct or incorrect exercise of the cause
which they reflect. In "recording" the original movements they will
show us what is right or wrong in the latter, and will thus offer us
an opportunity for correcting them. Up to the present they have been
simply barometers, which, no matter how closely we may observe them,
offer us no opportunity for changing "the state of the weather" which
they indicate. After thoroughly comprehending the _causes_, however,
which move them, we may shape the course of the latter in conformity
with our will. Or, vice versa, we may shape our will, which, after all,
is the _first cause_, so as to correct that which they indicate to be
wrong in our tone production.

Now, what is that which the will acts upon, and thus becomes the
original source, the first cause, so to say, of tone production? My
answer will be a surprise, for, as far as I know, no one has ever as
much as thought, even, of looking in this direction for the seat of the

The original source of tone production has its location in _various
vessels of the viscera_: in the lungs, the kidneys, and the bladder,
for the most part, though many other vessels, if not all, participate,
and are more or less involved in its production. Besides these vessels,
the heart and the solar plexus, as central organs of the vascular
and nervous systems, together with the brain as the central seat of
thought and the will, perform parts of the highest importance in tone
production and vocal utterance. In the lungs, the bladder, and the
kidneys, together with their coadjutors, the bronchi and ureters, _the
tone originates_. Here we can control, and unconsciously do control, it.

I shall adduce indubitable proof as to the correctness of these
assertions. More than that, I shall _locate_ sounds in these various
vessels. As a tone proceeds from a given string located in a given part
of a musical instrument, and cannot proceed from or be produced on any
other string, a given tone of the human voice proceeds from a given
vessel, and cannot proceed from or be produced in any other vessel.

I shall furthermore show that the various shades of a tone proceed from
various parts of such vessel. Yet, while tones are produced in special
parts, the instrument of the voice being of a sympathetic nature,
_all_ parts of the _viscera_ participate therein, by, in a manner,
_leaning_ towards a vessel in which a tone is produced, thus assisting
in giving it utterance. If a sound is produced in one of the vessels
of the abdomen, those of the thorax, though not directly participating
therein, give it aid and comfort by their passivity, thus throwing the
entire strength of the voice-producing forces into this one spot. If a
sound is produced in the thorax, the vessels of the abdomen aid it in
a similar manner. This is more particularly the case when a sound of a
superior order is to be produced, which is thus _reinforced_ by this

In matters of the voice, as in many others, truth is stranger than

Dr. Rush has said:

"Some day, when the real instrument of the voice will be discovered,
it will be found to be of an order far different in its nature and
construction from that which it has ever been supposed to be."

The greatest mechanical wonder, however, is that the voice, and that
which is apparently one and the same sound, should under different
circumstances emanate from sources so entirely different in their
construction as the vocal cords to the trachea and those to the
œsophagus, the viscera of the kidneys, the bladder and the lungs, etc.
This fact also accounts for the mystery which, like an impenetrable
veil, has hung over the features of the voice. Who has ever thought of
looking for the spirit of the voice to reveal itself from _beneath_ the
tongue? Who has ever thought that the œsophagus was a breathing-tube
of a similar functional order as the trachea? Who has thought that the
viscera of the abdomen were playing as important a part in breathing as
the lungs? Who has thought that the hemisphere of the abdomen was as
directly amenable to the influence of the air as that of the thorax?
Who has, in fine, thought that the viscera of the abdomen together with
those of the thorax were primarily instrumental in producing the voice
and vocal utterance?

It may not be pleasant to know, and it may not quite conform with our
æsthetic taste, that the "voice divine" should have its origin in such
vessels as the kidneys and the bladder; but I have no quarrel with
the Creator, and can but wonder, as I have never ceased to wonder from
step to step in all these investigations, at the marvellous resources
of nature. There is one great lesson conveyed through this, namely,---
that the body is _divine_ in its _every aspect_; parts which have been
supposed to serve ends only of a comparatively low order participating
in the highest spiritual functions.

This knowledge is the sanctification of the "flesh," so constantly and
unjustifiably rejected and reviled as against that of the spirit. I
am not dealing with theories, but am stating facts which will be as
positively proven as any other scientific facts ever have been proven.
These proofs will not be all forthcoming in this book, however, there
being other subjects of equal, if not greater, importance that I have
to deal with before I can reach them; these subjects being of such a
nature that they must be explained before those immediately connected
with voice production can be properly dealt with.

I have been reproached with attempting too much; with dealing with too
many subjects at one and the same time; that I ought to complete one
theme and then take hold of another. Just so; but this cannot be done.
I must first deal with general principles. Our entire system being of
a homogeneous nature, I cannot deal with separate issues until these
principles have been dealt with and understood in their entirety.
Besides, I cannot hope to ever _complete_ any one thing. I shall be
well satisfied if I shall be able to simply touch upon every subject
that has come under my observation, lightly, suggesting things, and
leaving it to others to enter more thoroughly into the same.


With our mortal eyes turned outwardly we cannot see spiritual things,
nor the motive power of life, nor the material form the spirit assumes
in moving the mechanism of the body. For there _is_ a material way
in which it is thus moved, as there necessarily must be, and I have
obtained glimpses thereat by turning my eyes inwardly--by looking into
myself with the _inner_ surface of my eyes.

Yet through all these centuries people have been using that portion
of their eyes which is intended for external vision only, in a vain
endeavor to arrive at spiritual-material facts. Thus the larynx, as
the supposed seat of the voice, has been subjected to scrutiny based
upon laws derived from phenomena which owe their origin to physical
causes only. During this vain endeavor the larynx has been subjected
to torture and maltreatment worse than that inflicted upon a mediæval

But its tormentors have derived no solace from this treatment, not even
that of a confession of imaginary sins. Why not? Simply because it had
not anything to confess, being a reflex, an indirect, and not a free
and original agent. Through torture (by means of the laryngoscope), the
destroyer of harmony, we cannot arrive at laws based upon harmony.

Is not all physiological research more or less of this order? The
"higher law" of science may demand its victims, even as did the "higher
law" of the church. I do not wish to say, however, that the sacrifice
of animals on the altar of science is as useless as that of human
beings used to be on that of religion. Vivisection, however, while it
may, and no doubt sometimes does, help to recognize the physical cause
of disorder, will never be of any value in arriving at spiritual causes
and the recognition of the inner motive power of life, nor to any great
extent at that of the exercise of our faculties and functions. For this
knowledge we require a different mode of proceeding. To penetrate into
the realm of the spiritual-material world (and all phenomena of life
are of that nature) we must not look externally but internally, not
into other beings but into ourselves. That is the only place where we
can hope to find it in action and arrive at the causes of such action.

As our being cannot enter into the inner life of another being and
identify itself with the same or become a part thereof, or remain apart
and become a spectator of the same or substitute therefor (not even for
that of the simplest and lowest living vegetable or animal organism),
we would have to despair of our ability of ever being able to arrive
at the laws governing life, if we were not able to look into our own
lives by substituting for our observations our inner for our outer

The word "Introspection" has heretofore meant reflection upon purely
spiritual phenomena only; I have proven by my personal example that we
can observe physiologico-psychological phenomena with considerable
accuracy--very little of this kind of work, as far as I can learn,
ever having been done before. The nearest approach at amalgamation,
probably, is that which is brought about by means of hypnotism. In this
instance the two factors, the positive and the negative, the operator
and the person operated upon, do not fuse, however, and become one,
but remain entities, each in his own right. Or, to speak still more to
the point, while the positive, that is the spiritual, factor of the
operator may, and no doubt does, join hands with the negative, that is
the material, of his subject, by which the operator becomes one with
the latter, there is still but an _influence_, and not an insight.
Besides, this condition is as yet too obscurely known to be made use of
as a practical means of observation.

After all this, the question will still be asked, "What must we _do_ to
look into ourselves?"

I will admit that I have not stated what others should do, but in
explaining what I have done I mean to explain what general course
others will have to pursue. By taking into consideration what I have
said, and adding thereto what I shall still have to say, a general idea
may be formed of what the reader must do to place himself in a position
to make original observations by means of introspection. No two cases
being just alike, from the fact that heredity, the mental capacity,
physical condition, education, temperament, nationality, etc., with
no two persons are just alike, it is not well possible to point out a
course quite suitable to all. I might as well attempt to arrive at a
law by the observance of which _all_ persons would be enabled to write

Still, needing assistance in this vast undertaking, I am particularly
anxious to make this matter clear, as the results of these observations
are of vital interest to all, and I am but one weak, ignorant mortal
creature, with but a small fraction of a life left to me in which to
state that which it would at least take a full lifetime to properly
and fully explain. I am overburdened with an insight which is being
increased daily, even against my will, and which I shall never be able
to fully communicate to others. Let the flood-gates of truth once be
opened and come in upon you as they have upon me, and you will be
overwhelmed by the mass of their detail no less than by the vigor of
their mass. My great want, therefore, for the purpose of more fully
arriving at these facts and obtaining ever higher results is assistance
and coöperation. I wish it to be distinctly understood, however, that I
do not mean this in a personal sense--far from it; but in the interest
and the promotion of science, as everybody wanting to make original
observations must pursue these studies for himself and by himself.

Why such a course has not been heretofore pursued by others I am at
a loss to understand, except from the fact that it takes an unusual
amount of perseverance to reach the first results. Though _all_ persons
may not be able to personally obtain satisfactory results, _all_ may be
_benefited_ by the results obtained by those qualified to successfully
carry on a course of observations by means of introspection. The
world at large will always have to be satisfied with being simply the
beneficiary of scientific research; more especially of research in
matters spiritual or psychical. From facts thus obtained rules may
be deduced, which, translated into "physical forms," may become the
property of all. In this manner numerous observations I have made have
already assumed a practical shape; but I have not as yet been able to
devote the necessary time to them to produce a system which may be used
for general instruction.

Meanwhile I do sincerely hope that others will take hold of these
matters in all seriousness, and assist me in arriving at these
practical physical forms, which I trust, in fact _know_ beyond the
shadow of a doubt, will be fruitful of the most beneficent results
in the teaching of the deaf, of singing and elocution, of pure vocal
utterance in speaking; in curing stammering and other chronic faulty or
deficient utterance; besides numerous other matters of equal importance
not in immediate connection with vocal utterance.

That these matters must be and are of the greatest importance to the
medical student goes without saying. It is to be hoped that they may
lead to a more rational treatment of our frail and often ailing bodies.
I say "bodies" because this is the common phrase. Yet how false this
is, every true physician is but too conscious of. Our ailments cannot
be successfully treated from a mere physical standpoint. The question
of life is not a mechanical one; it is spiritual beyond anything else,
the spirit being the motive power giving life to the otherwise inert
physical body. Yet the only endeavor of the physician has always been
to cure the "machine," to set its mechanism right again when it is out
of order, simply because he has not been able to get at the spiritual
motive power which propels it.

I have been trying to get at this motive power, and to some extent
have been successful in so doing. Besides, the _body_ never suffers.
Its ailments make the soul suffer; while the ailments of the soul have
a comparatively less injurious effect upon the body. The body is the
habitation of the soul. The soul dwells in its _every_ part. As long
as this habitation is habitable the soul continues to dwell therein.
When it becomes uninhabitable the soul departs, never to return. Hence
a body, never so frail and ailing, will continue to live as long as a
vital part is not affected, that is, a part the soul _requires_ for its
habitation and cannot do without. Close such part to the indwelling
of the soul, prevent material and spiritual factors from joining
hands therein, and the spirit departs. Once departed it can never
be made to return. Hence a body in the full vigor of health, after
having been immersed in water sufficiently long to have any one vital
avenue positively closed against the indwelling of the soul, cannot be
resuscitated. As long as the soul clings to it, however, with never so
feeble a grasp, it may come to life again, in the same manner that a
flame nearly extinguished may be fanned to life again.

For me to _fully_ describe my mode of proceeding in arriving at these
matters would be equal to an attempt at crowding into a few paragraphs
_all_ I have gone through within something like forty years, more or
less, of observation.


I have already stated that I was originally led into making these
investigations through my simple desire of getting rid of my _German_
mode of expression in speaking the English language. Being determined
to find out where the trouble was which prevented me from producing
pure English sounds while I experienced no difficulty in producing
pure German sounds, I pursued vocal sounds, through numerous phases,
to their original sources. The endeavor to arrive at the true nature
of vocal sounds through autology and by means of "introspection" has,
no doubt, been made by thousands before me. The reason they were not
more successful must be attributed to the simple fact that such persons
have been lacking in perseverance. It is one of the most misleading
endeavors one can pursue.

In the beginning I came to what I considered a _positive_ result
perhaps for the hundredth time, but to think I was on the wrong
track the one hundred and first time. I would then, perhaps, finally
determine that the first result arrived at, after all, was the correct
one. In this manner I have in the course of time arrived at positive
conclusions, which have been the basis of all my investigations, and
are undoubtedly correct, as they have yielded up one result after
another and have never proven false. For this, relatively speaking,
"perfect insight" I have waited, before saying anything more at all,
since my previous (preliminary) publication. To these conclusions I owe
my present trust and confidence, and the "boldness and temerity," as
some may say, in making such "startling declarations" in the face of
the accumulated wisdom of the science of this and of past ages. Yet I
am tired unto death of prevarication and of time-serving, and will say
what I consider to be the truth, no matter what may be the consequence.

Any one singing a false note or mispronouncing a foreign word or sound,
yet knowing what the right note, word, or sound is and should be, can
do the same thing, and by perseverance finally find what he has been
looking for and pronounce such note, word, or sound in its entire
purity. This will put him on the track to the production of _all_ pure
notes or sounds. To accomplish this, he must persistently watch one
result after another.

My mode of proceeding has been largely in making parts _rigid_, and
then observing the consequences. In pursuing this course for some time,
you will finally attain such a mastery therein that you will be able
to make almost any vessel, muscle, sinew, membrane, tissue, etc., or
any _part_ thereof, rigid. This is done for the purpose of neutralizing
parts which partake in the production of sounds, and will enable you to
closely watch cause and effect in your natural, as well as artistic,
course of breathing and sound production. _Having two languages at my
command, I was startled to find that cause and effect in both were
totally different from each other._ This gave me the original cue to
all my observations.

In place of sounds, others may pursue odor, taste, feeling,
motion, hearing, etc., to their original sources, and make similar
observations. In so doing they will find that _all phenomena, the
products of our faculties, abilities, or gifts, originally proceed from
the same or similar sources; that there is a homogeneity of proceeding,
mainly consisting in various modes of breathing, in the production of
them all; the end organs of our senses or gifts finally determining
definite special results_.

For vocal utterance, we draw our inspiration for various results to
be attained, from the air, and breathe in a different mode for every
special performance. These modes of breathing, though the same for all
persons in a general sense and leading through the same channels, in a
more restricted sense are different for every nationality.

There is no "danger" connected with these pursuits, in spite of Mr.
Heidenhain's fears; which fact is due to the duality of the nature of
each and all our various faculties, there being a safety-valve always
at the other end in the shape of the negative factor. The only danger I
have discovered was in connection with the "streams of life," which do
not permit tampering with without penalty. As these exist independent
of our ordinary mode of breathing, they are not apt to be interfered
with by any neophyte in the pursuits now under consideration. Of these
powerful streams, of which no notice has ever been taken by any one,
though ceaselessly streaming into and out of our system while life
lasts, I shall take occasion to speak later on.


To make a part "rigid" is equal to the "extirpation" of such part.
While it is in a state of rigidity, it ceases to take part in any
action whatsoever; it is inert and the same as if it had ceased to
exist. What advantage, then, let me ask, is there in extirpating parts
in animals, when we can, by making parts rigid, directly extirpate such
parts in ourselves? We can in this manner suppress the action of any
muscle, or the participation of any vessel, or part of such vessel, in
any act, by the simple exercise of our volition. I find no difficulty
in thus "extirpating" any such part from myself for the time being,
and then observing the consequences. I can take hold of the innermost
part of myself, so to say, and take it _out of myself_. In regard to
vocal utterance, these consequences are positive and direct. That
these operations must be very _carefully_ conducted in connection with
_vital_ parts goes without saying. The action of muscles participating
in the production of vocal utterance, however, or in the act of
breathing, except the muscles of the heart, can be suppressed without
danger. I am thus in a position to modify extirpation of parts to any
extent, almost, I desire. I can add to and detract therefrom at will,
and can shift the act of extirpation from the anterior part of a vessel
to its posterior, or from its superior to its inferior, or vice versa,
now making one side rigid, then the other, now one end, and then the
other; or take hold of its centre and leave the other parts free,
or suppress its circumference and leave the centre free. There is
scarcely a limit to the action of my will in handling my subject. All
this while, my feelings, my intelligence, my mind, take in every phase
of these proceedings, and enable me to give a correct account of the
results I have been observing.

This discovery--for a discovery it must be, as I can find no account of
any similar proceeding ever having been carried on--should, and I hope
will, put an end to vivisection, when it is resorted to for the purpose
of learning anything whatever in respect to the action and the process
of life. By this proceeding I have more or less successfully observed
the acts of breathing, of vocal utterance, motion and locomotion,
hearing, seeing, and thinking.

I beg leave to here insert without comment the following clipping from
the press:

    The following extracts are from a lecture on "Vivisection in
    Relation to Medical Science," delivered by Edward Berdoe, M.
    R. C. S., etc., at Cambridge. Lovers of animals may be glad to
    know how the medical fraternity amuse themselves:

    "You may open the abdomens of living cats, guinea-pigs, and
    rabbits, and apply irritating chemicals to their exposed
    intestines, causing what you are pleased to term 'peculiar
    rhythmic movements' and 'circus movements,' but what the
    unlearned would call violent spasms and convulsions, as was
    done by Dr. Batten and Mr. Bokenham, at St. Bartholomew's
    Hospital, last year. You may dissect out the kidneys of living
    dogs and cats which you have first paralyzed by curare--the
    'hellish oorali' of Lord Tennyson's poem, so called because
    the animal's sufferings are intensified by its use, and it is
    unable to move a limb, or to bite, scratch, howl, or otherwise
    interfere with the operator's comfort. You may do this, as
    was done by Dr. John Rose Bradford, at University College,
    London. You may infect ninety cats with cholera poison, and
    bake numbers of them alive, as did Dr. Lander Brunton. You may
    inoculate the eyes of rabbits and guinea-pigs with the material
    of tubercle, fix glass balls filled with croton oil--a horribly
    irritating drug--and stitch them into the muscles of the backs
    of rabbits, then crush them amongst their tissues, as did
    Dr. Watson Cheyne, at King's College, London. You may slice,
    plough, burn, and pick away the brains of monkeys and dogs, as
    did Dr. Ferrier. You may slowly starve to death animals whose
    vagi nerves have been cut and stimulated by electricity, as
    was done by Dr. Gaskell, of this University, in 1878. You may
    cut out the spleens and livers from living rabbits, pigeons,
    and ducks, as was done by Dr. William Hunter, of St. John's
    College, Cambridge, in 1888, or do a thousand other acts which
    in a coster-monger or a farm laborer would be termed and dealt
    with as acts of atrocious cruelty, punishable by imprisonment.
    But you have not learned the cure for a single malady which
    afflicts the human body."


There is another mode of proceeding by which satisfactory results can
be obtained, and which was the only one I resorted to in the beginning
and for many years afterwards; namely, the watching of the movements of
the tongue.

The muscle of the tongue, for vocal utterance, is the most important in
our organization. It appears to me, in fact, as if in its tip there
were a concentration of all the threads which control our existence;
and that it is, therefore, representative of an epitome of our entire
being. As all sciences, in a general, though in some instances
perhaps somewhat remote, sense, centre in the science of life, so
do the controlling elements in our composition centre in the tip of
the tongue. If it were possible to analyze it spiritually as well as
physically, we would obtain a compendium of knowledge far in advance of
any there is in existence in the world at the present time. Still, it
must be admitted that this would, to some extent, depend upon _whose_
tongue's tip was submitted to such analyzation. The fact of the tip of
the tongue being removed by surgical operation without serious effect
upon the mental condition of the individual does not greatly affect my
assertion. In that case the concentration must have taken place at the
tongue's new tip or end.

The tongue's tip, with as infallible correctness as the magnetic needle
points towards the north pole, indicates the exact spot whence sounds
come, or should come, to appear on the surface in a clear and undefiled
manner. The tongue's tip, for English vowel sounds, does not touch
any part of the oral cavity. It is constantly changing its position,
however, and for every vowel sound, or shade of a vowel sound, points
in the direction of or _approaches_ the spot whence a sound comes,
or should come. To ascertain such spot with exactitude, it is but
necessary to _extend_ the tongue's tip until it reaches the wall of the
oral cavity during or, still better, immediately after the utterance
of a vocal sound. Upon reaching that spot the tongue may continue in
the same position of contact and the sound can still be uttered with
entire purity. Change this point of contact, however, but in the least,
and such sound will at once cease to come to the surface. Yet, while
_apparently_ a sound comes from the direction in which the tip of the
tongue points, this is not really the case. In pointing in a given
direction, the tongue opens up the channels of the œsophagus and the
trachea in a special manner for the proper emission of a given sound,
beneath as well as above, and to the left as well as to the right of
its radix. In changing the tongue's position but in the least, these
channels will open in a different direction, which may then be the
proper medium for the emission of another sound, but not for the one
under consideration.

The general mode in which the radix of the tongue turns upon its axis
is the direct and fundamental cause productive of the various languages
of the world; such general mode necessitating special movements of
the tongue for the production of the sounds of any special language.
Regarding the proper emission of consonant sounds every one knows that
the same depends upon the particular spot of contact of the tongue's
tip with parts of the oral cavity. As a matter of fact, such point
of contact also opens, the same as with vowel sounds, the tubes of
the trachea and œsophagus at the tongue's radix in the proper manner
for the emission of a given stream of air for the production of such
consonant sounds.

Every imaginable opprobrious epithet has been by singers bestowed upon
the tongue. "This obstreperous muscle which is always in the way," says
one. "This troublesome member will persist in going up when you want
it to remain down"; "intractable," "contrary," "obstinate," "wilful,"
"ungovernable," "stubborn." All these expressions have been used by
writers on the voice in connection with the tongue, simply because it
would not yield to unreasonable and unnatural demands made upon it; the
tongue, being a free agent, persisting in its natural rights--as much
so as any independent democratic citizen persists in his.

My observations having been made in connection with a foreign language,
I had a better opportunity for watching my tongue's movements than I
would have had had I attempted to watch them in connection with my
native tongue; the movements of the tongue in connection with the
latter being so rapid and involuntary that it becomes exceedingly
difficult to make any observations at all. It was like having this
foreign (English) tongue exist independently alongside of my own, my
intelligence watching it, and guiding it, now here, now there, until it
would touch the right spot for the right English sound. Knowing what
the right sound was and should be, I never stopped until the same came
to the surface.

In trying to find my way in this foreign (English) territory of the
oral cavity, I might compare my English tongue to the stick in the
hands of a blind man, who uses it in place of his eyes to ascertain his
whereabouts, so as to enable him to proceed on his way in the right
direction. With my "stick" I felt in every direction, till I found I
could steer clear of obstacles straight into the channel of the sound I
had been seeking. From my German post of observation I was thus enabled
to watch the movements of my English tongue in its efforts to find
itself "at home" in this foreign territory, while I was at the same
time guiding it from one point therein to another.

I want to call especial attention to and reiterate the fact that
the exact point whence a sound proceeds, or seems to proceed, can,
by extending the tongue's tip, be quite as well (if not better)
ascertained, _after_ the utterance of a sound, as _during_ such
utterance; that is _immediately_ after the tongue has ceased to vibrate
for such sound.

The difference in the movements of the tongue for various languages
is one of the most interesting observations to be made in connection
with these studies. The German language being the exact opposite, the
antipode, to the English, after comprehending the movements of the
tongue for the latter, its own movements, that is, the movements of the
tongue for German sounds, were not difficult for me to ascertain.

It is an anomaly to apply the works of German writers on the voice to
the study of the English language, or to that of any other than the
German language; or to apply books written from an English standpoint
to the study of any language except the English--the movements of the
tongue, and, in sympathy therewith, of countless other muscles, being
different for every language.

Whatever the movements of the tongue are for the _spoken_ language,
they are of an inverse order for _song_. I anticipate in making the
following statement, namely, that while speech is of an order which
is rapid, direct, anterior, exterior, spontaneous, impulsive, and
material, song is of an order which is slow, indirect, posterior,
interior, premeditated, contemplative, and spiritual. I will also
add this: that, _while speech is of the oral cavity, song is of the
pharynx_. In making these remarks and others _in anticipation_, I do
so intentionally and for a purpose; not so much in expectation that
they will be at once and fully understood, as with a view of setting
others thinking on these subjects until I can reach them in due course
of time; or, if I should _never_ be able to reach them, that the
principle, at least, underlying the same, which if the opportunity
had been granted me would have been fully sustained, shall not be
lost. The reader will notice that I am hurrying over the ground
as rapidly as I consistently can, even from my--under the best of
circumstances--superficial standpoint, leaving wide gaps to be filled
in by others in the course of time.


Speaking of sounds in making experiments in connection with the
movements of the tongue, it is of the first importance that these
sounds should be _simple_ and not _vocal_ or compound. They must be
sounds of the same order as we utter in whispering, or such sounds as
we are apt to use when learning to speak a foreign tongue. They are
the inharmonious sounds of the deaf, and those which distinguish the
speech of a foreigner from that of the native-born.

The recognition of these sounds as the _negative parts of speech_ has
been one of my main accomplishments, and has been of the greatest
assistance to me in my investigations.

Things _complete_ tell no tales. We must decompose them, reduce them
to their elements, if we want to arrive at the truth in matters of
science. I have succeeded in doing with things spiritual--vocal
sounds--what the chemist is doing with things material. In things
complete, as they are shaped by the hand of nature, the elements of
which they are composed are mingled in such a dexterous manner, are so
happily blended, that they adjust, counterpoise, and complement one
another, and thus live with and in one another.

These new forms have been created by the elements of which they are
composed, abandoning their separate original forms and now appearing in
a new form, as integral parts of an _harmonious_ entity. These elements
have not only abandoned their form, however, but in most instances have
also changed their character; which in their original composition may
have been of a _discordant_, violent, and even dangerous nature. Take
but the atmospheric air and its elements for an example.

A similar state of affairs exists in connection with the phenomena
of the material-spiritual world. While vocal sounds, when properly
produced, stand for all that is harmonious and pleasing, their
component parts, their positive and negative elements, by themselves,
offer features of a contrary nature. They also offer us, the same as
elements do to the chemist while making experiments, the opportunity
for making an endless number of combinations. Unless you know what
_simple_ sounds--_i. e._, negative parts of vocal sounds--are, and
know how to produce them, you will scarcely be able to make one class
of experiments which I shall offer in great abundance to sustain my

When I shall reach the subject of vocal sounds proper, I shall
more fully explain their exact nature. I will simply say this at
present: A simple sound is the product of that hemisphere only to
which it properly belongs. A vocal sound is aided and assisted by a
complementary sound from the other hemisphere. The more perfect such
aid, the more perfect will be its tone. Simple vowel sounds are short,
abrupt, the same as consonant sounds when produced all by themselves
and without the aid of a vowel sound uttered in conjunction with them.


In saying, as I have, that introspection is carried on by looking into
ourselves with the _inner surface of our eyes_, I meant to say, in the
first instance, that we must exclude all exterior vision, and then
attempt to locate and follow up the course of events going on within
us. While in this state we are strictly reduced to our personal and
individual existence. In thus "watching," the function of our eyes,
instead of being used for external material observation, is reversed;
their function now being to observe internally and spiritually.

In connection with sounds, you will not only "in your mind's eye" _see_
the places where they originate, and _feel_ the course they are taking,
but you will actually, functionally (in the mode of spiritually seeing
and feeling), "see" and "feel" them. This vision and this feeling is
far from being perfect, however,--not being accustomed to thus seeing
and feeling,--but it may, when continuously exercised, become so in
the course of time. While in this state, besides seeing the places
interiorly, you may also see them exteriorly, by reflection as it
were, and in a reverse order, "as in a looking-glass," in which case
it is still an interior vision reflected exteriorly. As a matter of
fact, I not only believe, but positively _know_, that _every exterior
functional surface has a corresponding posterior one_.

Whenever a thing is brought _home_ to us, either through our organs
of seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling, or tasting, the outer surface
of such respective organ constitutes the positive factor for such
action, while its inner surface constitutes the negative factor
thereof. Whenever the outer world is excluded, however, as during
thought, introspection, and in our sleep, the inner surface of any of
these organs becomes the positive, and the outer surface the negative,
factor. In thus saying, "I see with the inner surface of my eyes," I do
not mean this figuratively only, but literally, functionally, as well;
as I could not see these places and locate them internally nor could
I see any subject or object with "my mind's eye," if the faculty of
seeing were not actually given to the posterior surface of the eye.

This will become clear when you consider that you will altogether
fail to see internally when you attempt to use the _anterior_
surface of your eye for the purpose of _internal_ vision. Thus, the
phenomena of vision which accompany thought or dreams, during sleep
as well as in our waking moments, are not merely spiritual, but, in
the sense of internal functional vision, are also material, so to
say. _All_ thought, in fact, is more or less of this same nature. We
use the posterior surfaces of our organs of sense more frequently,
in consequence, than we do their corresponding anterior surfaces.
Physiologists will say there is no such a thing as an inner surface
of the eye capable of seeing. This does not alter the fact that I
actually, functionally, see with the posterior surface of my eyes, and
that everybody else does the same thing.

I shall, in connection with vocal utterance, have occasion to call
attention to numerous divisions of as positive a character as a wall
of living tissue, of which there is not a trace to be seen by external
vision; these divisions being channels, constantly used in one and
the same direction, some for ingoing, others for outgoing streams of
air and sounds. Of these channels, also, being invisible to the outer
surface of the eye, science has never taken any notice. These invisible
agencies are connecting links, mediating between cause and result, in
connection with material-spiritual or spiritual-material phenomena of
whatsoever nature brought to our consciousness. Hence the inability
of science, in its ignorance of these agencies, to reconcile the one
with the other by the aid of such material only as has been heretofore
at its disposal. We may _see_ proceedings going on which are mediating
between cause and effect, by the assistance of the inner surface of
our eyes. They disappear altogether, as well as any other "vision,"
upon an attempt being made at seeing them with the external surface of
our eyes. Yet we may see inwardly with our eyes open, as we do when
absent-minded, etc.

If we could invent a microscope by the aid of which we could look into
ourselves in a _spiritual_ sense, that is, through posterior surfaces,
_all_ the secret springs of our nature might be revealed to us. This
ability to become cognizant of physiologico-psychological processes
by the aid of the inner surfaces of our organs of sense, reveals
a peculiar functional exercise of their faculties. In matters of
memory they are not intended to aid in conveying to our consciousness
impressions made at the _present_, but those made at a previous time.
These impressions having been made on the soft tablets of our brain,
either during our individual existence or that of our progenitors, and
transmitted to us by dint of heredity, are brought to our consciousness
by the aid of these inner surfaces, _phonographically_. They are
awakened by association; and that organ of sense by the aid of whose
anterior surface they were first received and _recorded_, now reawakens
them by the aid of its posterior surface. Visions, consequently, are
reflections made on the inner surface of the eyes, from impressions
previously made upon the brain, in a similar manner to that by which
sounds come forth from a phonograph. They could not assume shape if
they were not thus reflected. It is owing to the nature of these
reflections that they are more fleeting and evanescent than those made
by the objects themselves upon the external surface of the eyes.

The anterior and posterior surfaces of all organs, by whose aid we
exercise our faculties, which surfaces represent their poles and dual
factors, the positive and the negative, the material and the spiritual,
change places in conformity with whether an object is impressed upon
them exteriorly or interiorly, in the present or the past, directly or
indirectly, physically or spiritually. Things which are brought to our
consciousness from the exterior world and in a direct manner--through
our senses--may be said to be of a _material_ nature; while those which
come to us indirectly--through our inner consciousness--may be said
to be of _spiritual_ origin. The clearness of our visions naturally
depends upon the clearness of the impression still remaining upon
the tablets of the brain. The more stirring the event in the first
instance, the deeper and more lasting, of course, the impression. All
this, however, does not throw any light upon the process of abstract
thought; nor am I in a position to aid in so doing. Yet it appears
to me to be a sister proceeding; and that a nearer approach to an
explanation of those more material phenomena may finally assist in
arriving at an explanation of the causes of these more recondite and
apparently purely spiritual phenomena.

The correctness of the preceding remarks will become more apparent
when we substitute for the faculty of seeing, that of hearing. We
hear the voice of another person through the _anterior_ part of our
ear, _entering_, as it does, from _without_. We hear our own voice
through the _posterior_ part of our ear, _going out_, as it does,
from _within_. No matter how low we may speak, we can always hear our
own voice, though inaudible to others; and we can still distinctly
hear it at such time, even when we fail to hear a low, though in fact
relatively much louder, tone proceeding from the voice of another
person. A ventriloquist, on the other hand, with whom these relations
are reversed, hears his own voice reflected from without, inwardly,
while, if he continues in the same condition while listening to another
person's voice, he will hear the latter from within, outwardly.

For the purpose of testing the correctness of these observations,
please pay attention to the following: In listening to the sounds of
another person's speech, you will have no difficulty in noticing that
they stream into your ear from without, inwardly. Now, substitute for
this other person's voice the sounds of your own voice, _and continue
to listen to the same in precisely the same manner in which you did
to those of this other person_; that is, let them flow into your ear
from without, inwardly. The result will be _that you will not only not
hear the sounds of your own voice, but that these sounds themselves
will become paralyzed, that you will not be able to produce any sound

The cause is obvious. You attempt to listen to negative sounds with
the side of your ear still tuned negatively; while, ordinarily, when
we cease to listen and commence to speak, _all_ poles are reversed.
Spoken sounds are positive in relation to the speaker, but negative
in relation to the person listening to the same. In consequence, the
producer hears them with the negative (inner) part of his ear, the
receiver, or listener, hears them with the positive (exterior) part of
his ear.

I copy the following from an article in the _Philadelphia Sunday Press_:

    "A curious fact in regard to the effect of explosions upon the
    drumhead, is that this tissue, though generally blown in, is
    sometimes blown out. Just what causes the latter result has not
    yet been fully explained."

In this instance, I presume, the person's ear was tuned to listen
interiorly, and the effect of the explosion, which, in relation to him,
was of a negative nature, took effect on the positive, the posterior,
side of his ear. This person was not in expectancy of the explosion,
but it came on unawares, of a sudden, while he was in a state of

In connection with the eye, our inner consciousness acts as a "rein"
upon the outer, drawing back in case of danger, checking our progress
when suddenly coming upon a precipice, and _regulating our steps_ to
circumvent it, but without coming to a stop, when seeing an obstacle
in our way from a distance. The "rein" in such an instance reverses
the poles of the eyes--the positive becomes negative and the negative
positive; that is to say, in our usual mode of seeing, while walking,
the exterior surface of the eye is positive, the interior negative;
but when there is danger ahead and we are warned to be cautious, the
exterior becomes negative and the interior positive; the activity now
being exercised by the latter, the passivity by the former. The action
of the "rein," however, is not direct, but crosswise; that is to say,
the posterior surface of the left eye is in correspondence with the
anterior of the right, and vice versa, in conformity with the "impulse"
emanating from either the one or the other, while the anterior surface
of the left eye is in correspondence with the posterior of the right,
and vice versa.

The knowledge of the reversion of the functional exercise of our
organs of sense is of signal importance in connection with motion and
vocal utterance, which always go hand in hand; every utterance being
accompanied by a motion, though not always visible to the eye. In truly
artistic delivery these motions are brought to the highest perfection;
and visibly, though often in great moderation, accompany _every_
inflection of the voice.

To be able to see a thing at all, we must be in a relatively proper
position with the object to be seen; we must be on the same plane with
it. We must also have light, not only for the latter, but by reflection
therefrom also for ourselves. In addition we must have the inner light
enabling us to comprehend what we have seen. I contend that for the
study of spiritual-material as well as material-spiritual phenomena,
such light has always been wanting for the thing to be seen, as well as
for the orb to see and consequently for the spirit to comprehend. In
attempting to comprehend, and to explain appearances, physiologically,
we have been looking in our exterior world, where we cannot, in place
of our interior world, where we might be able to see and to observe. We
have been using the outer surface of our eye instead of the inner, with
which to see spiritual things. The thing to be seen and the orb with
which to see were not on the same "plane." It was impossible to perform
the act of _spiritually_ seeing. The proper light once obtained, it
has not only illumined for me the things to be seen, but also my
capacity for seeing and comprehending them. Roentgen has taught us the
method of seeing material things through opaque bodies. I have learned
to recognize spiritual phenomena in opaque bodies, created, as they
are, by a combination of spiritual and material factors. While I have
made use of this gift for a special study--that of vocal utterance--I
incline to think that it may be made use of for the study of not only
all the various material-spiritual phenomena to be observed in the
nature of organic bodies in general and man's in particular, but also
of our relations with the unseen and unknown world and its forces,
in which our essence has its being, whence it comes, and to which it
returns. In minutely explaining my mode of proceeding, it is also my
special desire to rob it of any appearance of "supernaturalness" some
persons might be inclined to invest it with. Though I cannot explain
many things connected with the voice from an entirely naturalistic
standpoint, I think they are all explainable if the proper amount of
study and observation be given to them. This, as a matter of course,
does not, however, include the operations of the mind proper, which are
governed by laws beyond any human understanding.


The entire mechanism of our being, more especially that of our
faculties and functions, is primarily excited through openings into
which air is inspired, from which air is expired. These openings are
connected with channels and vessels which are passive or negative
during inspiration; active or positive during expiration. Thus the
multiform streams of air introduced into our system communicate with
parts thereof, which, by their construction and intercommunication with
others, are specially adapted for the exercise of any special faculty
or function. Our will directs these streams of air to flow into their
proper channels (and they automatically obey) for the guidance of our
steps in a certain direction, for the production of a given sound,
the recognition of a given sight, the sensation of a peculiar odor,
taste, or feeling, or the excitation of a passion, a compassion, or
any other sensation, feeling, or thought whatsoever. These streams of
air, therefore, are of an order as multiform as the complex web of our
material and spiritual existence, and are introduced through thousands
of different channels and in thousands of different ways.

To confine our mode of physical and spiritual existence to a single
stream of air introduced into the oral cavity, or the nostrils, and
thence into the lungs, appears to me to be as primitive a proceeding
and as narrow a view as can possibly be taken of one of the greatest
subjects our understanding is called upon to deal with. In place of
that, I have positive proof that the streams of air which flow into
these openings are of the most multiform nature; every sight, odor,
taste, touch, and every sound, and fraction of a sound even, calling
for a special stream of air which no other stream can furnish or
supply. Besides the oral cavity and the nostrils, the eyes, ears,
and every additional opening, down to an almost invisible pore or
capillary vessel, are recipients of special streams intended for
special purposes. _We breathe through the soles of our feet and the
palms of our hands, as well as through the skull of our heads. The
closer we guard our body against the influence of the air, by means of
unnaturally close-woven and air-tight clothing, the less capable we
become of exercising our natural faculties and functions._

To this subject I shall devote time and attention at some future
period, more especially in connection with vocal utterance, as it has
everything to do with the production of sounds, which proceed in part
from within, outwardly, and in part from without, inwardly. In so
doing, positive becomes negative and negative positive; inspiration and
expiration equalize each other, and thus a continuous flow of speech
becomes possible, while if the flow were continuously in one and the
same direction it would soon come to an absolute stop.

It is this that science has done for us: It has clogged up all these
natural avenues to our existence by teaching that we breathe through
the trachea alone, in consequence of the muscle of the diaphragm
forming an air-tight partition between the upper and lower compartments
of our bodies; being ignorant of the fact of that other great tube of
the œsophagus, also opening into the oral cavity, performing the same
functions for the abdomen which the trachea does for the thorax. In
place of all these millions of openings through which we inspire and
expire, science teaches that we breathe through a single tube, into
and out of an _air-tight sack_,--a mechanically impossible proceeding.
By some ill-defined process, air is supposed to find its way into the
thorax and out again after depositing its oxygen in the blood-vessels.
Meanwhile, the balance of our body is left to shift for itself, not the
slightest particle of fresh food ever finding its way into any portion
thereof, except indirectly through the blood-vessels. To my simple
and untaught understanding it appears that if such a state of affairs
really existed--no matter how rapid the circulation of the blood--the
entire hemisphere of the abdomen would be given over to putrefaction in
an exceedingly short space of time.

Breathing, however, as we do, through the œsophagus, in like measure
with the trachea, and through every other opening in our epidermis in
addition, our body is constantly, uninterruptedly, permeated with fresh
air in its every avenue, vessel, capillary tube, cell, etc., which
sustains us by its life-giving qualities, and takes away with it the
constantly accumulating refuse.

The muscle of the diaphragm has been the air-tight door to the cell
of the condemned, whose portal has been guarded by ignorance and
every oppression, suppression, fear, superstition, anxiety, bigotry,
narrowness, prejudice, etc., that the human mind is capable of. It has
given us over to self-accusation as a natural and vital element. It
has shut us up into the narrowest limits, and kept us from communing
with the universe and the spirit of the universe. It has excluded from
us the grace, the beauty, the light, the liberty, the eternity of the
_spirit_, and prevented us from recognizing ourselves as integral parts
of the universe and of the causes which sustain it and sustain us. It
has prevented us from communing with them as free agents _in our own
name and by our own right_, without interference or the intercession of
any person or agency whatsoever, in the past or the present.

Have I placed too great a value on the discovery of the "voice of the

I feel convinced that the further exposition of my observations will
justify me in all I have said.


As the trunk has its diaphragm, dividing thorax and abdomen, so do
all dual hemispheres representing a faculty or function have their
diaphragms, performing duties of an analogous nature. _Every_ opening,
in fact, has its diaphragm. Where there is none visible, it is formed
by contraction, whenever needed, and but for the time being. All
these various diaphragms, more particularly the one specially bearing
that name, are of the greatest importance in connection with vocal
utterance,--the sounds of the vessels of the abdomen being produced by
an expansion of the thorax and consequent contraction of the abdomen,
those of the vessels of the thorax by an expansion of the abdomen and a
consequent contraction of the thorax.

For the purposes of vocal utterance, inspiration into the thorax
produces an expiration from the abdomen by way of the œsophagus,
accompanied by vocal sound, while an inspiration into the abdomen
produces an expiration from the thorax by way of the trachea,
accompanied by vocal sound; the special _mode_ of inspiration
regulating the special sound to be produced.

This proceeding has reference to outgoing sounds only. For ingoing
sounds the opposite proceeding takes place; an expiration from the
thorax producing an inspiration into the abdomen, and an expiration
from the abdomen an inspiration into the thorax, both accompanied by
sound. Every original inspiration into thorax or abdomen, of course,
must have been preceded by an expiration from these parts, while every
original expiration must have been preceded by an inspiration into the
same. The utterance of every sound, therefore, requires at least three
movements on the part of the respiratory organs. But for the action of
the diaphragm, such sounds could not be produced.

All these various diaphragms fall or recede for inspiration, rise or
advance for expiration; the function of a diaphragm being exercised
in conformity with the manner in which it is approached. This may be
done by way of the œsophagus or the trachea, _i. e._, from the side
of the hemisphere of the abdomen, or from that of the thorax. The
outward movement of the abdomen during respiration, therefore, is not
caused by a pressure brought to bear on its contents by the diaphragm,
but it advances and recedes in conformity with a direct process of
inspiration and expiration by way of the œsophagus and the trachea; the
œsophagus and trachea sustaining each other and acting reciprocally
and in conjunction. This presumed pressing forward and subsequent
receding of the entrails, in consequence of the descent and ascent of
the diaphragm, presents a spectacle as repugnant as it is impossible
of execution; the extension of the abdomen, more particularly in
connection with special sounds, being so great that no pressure
whatever brought to bear upon the entrails could possibly produce it.

In place of this theory, now so generally entertained, the simple fact
obtains that the diaphragm descends in consequence of an influx of air
into and subsequent expansion of the thorax, causing a contraction of
the abdomen and an efflux of air from the same; that it ascends in
consequence of an influx of air into and expansion of the abdomen,
causing a contraction of the thorax and an efflux of air from the same.



All vocal expression is but an echo, the echo of a thought. Thought
_must_ precede vocal expression. It is not possible to produce a vocal
sound, not the simplest, without thought. There is no such thing as a
voice _ipso facto_, no more than there is music in a musical instrument
unless it is called forth by the hand of the player. Try it. Come upon
a sound suddenly, around the corner, as it were, and then express
it. Do not give it a moment's time for its development; that is, do
not give thought time to mould a form for it, but try to utter it in
embryo, so to say, the very moment you think of it, and you will not be
able to do it. You will not produce any sound whatever.

It is as necessary to form a mould for a sound as it is for any
shaped and moulded material article. Out of this mould it comes
forth in conformity with the form we have given it: harsh, abrupt,
discordant--rhythmical, beautiful, soulful. Such as the thought is,
so will be the expression. In ordinary conversation this proceeding
is automatic and mechanical, in elocution or song more or less
volitional and artistic. That is to say, for ordinary speech it acts
automatically, for artistic utterance it acts designedly. Materially,
the mould is convex, shut, for ingoing; concave, open, for outgoing
sounds. It expands for the former, it contracts for the latter. Vocal
sounds are a product of matter as well as mind; the act itself which
produces them being a connecting link between matter and mind. The
soul calls on the body to aid it in giving form to its desires and
intentions; the body instantly obeys and assumes the form from which
the expected sound or action is to arise.

No matter how great a soul may be, unless it can give form and
consequent utterance to its greatness, it will be helpless, far more so
than the simplest soul capable of giving expression to its simplicity.
Confined to our own limits, like the congenital deaf, our faculties
become dwarfed and useless. We do not know ourselves, do not know our
own souls. We must expand, go out into the world and take it in, if we
want to grow and give our faculties a chance to develop.

The greater our horizon, the more we can take in, the more we can
give out. Our soul is scarcely ours when enchained; the greater its
liberty, the more it belongs to us. Hence our just pity for the
congenital deaf, and our desire to assist them in their efforts at
expression. Those among them who are being, or have been, tutored,
receive their impressions through their eyes in the form assumed by
the speaker's mouth; the eye assuming the function of the ear. The
form assumed by their teacher's mouth, however, not being perfect, a
perfect impression cannot be made. Hence the expression of the deaf
is in conformity with the impression they have obtained: mechanical,
material, soulless. The exterior lines of the mouth of the teacher, or
any other speaker's from which the deaf draw their inspiration, are
those of the material side of the medal. Failing to see the reverse
side thereof, namely, the interior of the mouth, which is its spiritual
side, the lines of the latter make no impression upon them. These
fine lines on the interior side of the speaker's mouth, representing
the rhythm, the soul of the voice, not being seen, fail to make that
impression from which alone a soulful expression could arise.

That an _impression_ may be made through the eye will scarcely require
a defense, in view of the fact that in reading aloud or in singing
from notes the _entire_ impression is made through the eye. The reader
or singer, knowing the _value_ of every sound, is impressed by the
sight of a letter or a note as he would be by the sound itself. Not so
with the congenital deaf, who, being ignorant of such value, cannot
reproduce it. Nor will it be contended, I suppose, that the deaf
knowingly, designedly, or volitionally attempt to imitate the forms
assumed by the teacher's mouth, but it will be admitted that this is
done spontaneously, and that vocal sounds with them arise from this
imperfect mechanism, thus involuntarily reproduced.

With the congenital deaf, with persons attempting to speak a foreign
language, etc., the material form, as well as the spiritual impetus,
being imperfect, the expression will be in conformity therewith. In
how far and in what manner these investigations may become helpful to
the deaf will be a matter for the not distant future to develop. That
they will eventually become of the greatest aid to them I have every
reason to believe. Those who have made a study of matters of this kind
understand the difficulties surrounding the same. These difficulties
are increased manifold where the ear of the scholar absolutely refuses
to come to his own and his teacher's aid.

There are forms in which vocal sounds move, well defined and capable of
material representation, which are not fully expressed by the shape of
the teacher's mouth, nor are they thus expressed by impressions taken
by the aid of the camera. Regarding the latter, it is necessary to note
that photographic representations of vocal sounds are the result of
the combined action of the voice of the œsophagus and of that of the
trachea, of material and immaterial factors. Just in how far the latter
are capable of being thus represented must, as yet, remain a matter of

An attempt at reconciling photographic representations of vocal sounds
with the oscillations of the vocal cords is, at most, a one-sided
proceeding. To arrive at any correct conclusion at all, it would be
necessary to take the vibrations of the "vocal lip" and the frænum into
equal consideration.

Regarding our capacity for improving the natural physical and psychical
capabilities of the musical instrument of the voice, that depends upon
the manner in which we play upon it. As it yields to the slightest
pressure of the air, either for good or for evil, we must, above all
things, learn how to guide the tip of our tongue in touching its
aërial strings or keys, which are far more sensitive than those of any
instrument ever produced by the hand of man. It takes years to attain a
mastery over the simplest musical instrument; yet it is often expected
that the instrument of the voice should yield to the most careless
efforts made in the most wilful and indiscriminate manner.

The _thought_ of a sound, after _producing_ an impression, _guides_
the tongue in _releasing_ such impression. Unless the tongue touches
or moves towards the exact spot which will effect such release, the
expression or the sound will not be forthcoming. That the impression,
as well as its release, should be properly made, it is necessary to
_think_ of the sound which is to be produced, in the most precise and
correct manner. I cannot sufficiently impress upon the reader's mind
the importance this simple lesson conveys. If he will shape his manner
of vocal utterance, especially his mode of singing, in conformity
therewith, he will be able to improve his voice to a far greater
extent than he would by following any or all of the realistic methods
now in vogue. This _thinking_ of the correct sound must be carried on
for the _next_ syllable during the _production_ of the previous one;
and care must be taken not to think of more than one syllable at one
and the same time. Unless this is done, no pure sound will ever be
produced, the impression made by thinking of a second or third syllable
overlapping that for the next following; thus producing a muddle and
a discord. Rhythm being the basis for all perfect vocal utterance,
a rhythmic impression must be made in order to obtain a rhythmic
expression. This cannot be done when the former is not preserved in its
entire purity until it is released.

All of us, either during our ordinary speech or during our efforts
at artistic expression, are guided by the process just described;
unknowingly, unwittingly, properly or improperly, for good or for evil,
pursuing this same course. I cannot enter upon these matters to any
greater extent at this time, as it will be necessary to first treat of
other matters with which they are intimately connected.


In trying the experiment of coming upon a sound unawares, simply
endeavor to divest yourself of all thought, and then suddenly, without
any preparation whatever, say "a," or "b," or "it," or any word you
wish, and you will not be able to produce such sound or sounds--or,
in fact, any sound whatsoever. Or, you may get some one to, of a
sudden, produce sounds embodied in letters before your eyes; and you
will find you will be unable to utter them instantly. While you cannot
thus produce a vocal sound, or vocal sounds embodied in words, you can
produce _simple_ sounds without preparation. As they belong to but
one hemisphere, and are consequently not the product of a compound
impression, they may be uttered the very moment we think of them. While
they are being uttered, our organs of speech are "shut," far more so
than they are for _vocal_ sounds.

Consonant sounds cannot be uttered "vocally" without a vowel sound.
When they appear in a syllable their _accompanying_ vowel sound carries
them and permeates them. When they appear singly we add a vowel sound
to them. We say: "ar," "be," "en," "ka," etc.; unless we do so we
cannot pronounce them. Without such accompanying vowel sound they would
be inert.

"Simple" _consonant_ sounds are unaccompanied, not "leavened," by
a vowel sound. "Simple" _vowel_ sounds, on the other hand, are
unaccompanied by the element which constitutes consonant sounds; while
"vocal" _vowel_ sounds _are_ accompanied thereby.

The word "surd," used in connection with non-vocal sounds, does not
express the meaning of what I call "simple" sounds, as all sounds may
be either "vocal" or "simple," while "surd" applies only to special

The necessity of making an impression for vocal utterance also prevails
in connection with motion. You cannot lift your right foot or your left
arm, or make any given motion whatever, the very moment you think of
making it. It requires some preparation; though you may lift _part_
of a limb without preparation. A part of a limb in this sense may
be compared to a _simple_, the entire limb to a _vocal_, sound. The
thought must make an impression by expansion or contraction, which,
when released, will express the desired motion; no matter whether such
motion is made unconsciously or deliberately. It is more difficult to
watch this proceeding in connection with sight; the operations of light
being so rapid that the expression seems to be simultaneous with the

Contraction and expansion for motion are of the same order as they are
for vocal utterance. In fact, both are so closely connected that we
cannot utter a sound unless it is accompanied by a motion. In stopping
the motion accompanying a sound, we stop our ability of uttering such
sound. I shall have occasion to call attention to numerous conditions
under which it will be impossible to utter sounds, either separate or
connected, by stopping the motion necessary to produce such sounds. It
is all due to the fact that we are homogeneous beings, _whose powers
are interdependent upon one another_.

The effect of the teacher's _voice_ upon his or her scholar's
organization is of a _similar_ order to that made by _thought_ upon
the teacher's own organization. That it is not of the _same_ order is
due to the fact that the organization upon which it is made is but
rarely constituted the same, is not as highly organized and developed
or "schooled," as the one from which the voice emanated. The impression
made by the singing-teacher's _voice_ is of the same order as that
made upon the deaf by the _features_ of their instructor which are
representative of his voice. We are living, breathing _phonographs_.
Every impression we receive through any of our senses must be made in
a material manner before it can have its immaterial expression. We
engrave upon living tissue, instead of on rubber or wax.

I repeat that, to obtain a pure sound, the _thought_ underlying such
sound or sounds must be _purely, clearly defined_. We cannot obtain
a clear impression from a seal whose engraving is blurred, or when
the sealing-wax is not in a proper condition of softness, or when the
hand is not steady which makes the impression. The same conditions
prevail with vocal utterance. Thought makes the impression; the æther,
passing through its narrowed passages at a rate as swift as thought,
creates the sound. The impression is made as _thought_ progresses, the
expression as _sound_ progresses. While the _impression is thoughtful,
the expression is thoughtless_. While we think for a sound during
the impression, we do not think for it during its expression; _but
we think, during the latter, for the next sound_. If this were not
the case, consecutive speech would be a matter of impossibility. The
artist's thought is embodied in the creation of the model for his
statue from which a mould is made. The casting of the statue, equal to
its expression, is mechanical, thoughtless.

In this connection the brain is of the same order as the tablets of
the phonograph. For ordinary use, however, the lines engraved upon it
are evanescent; they disappear again with the sound or thought which
releases them. Impressions, however, of a deeper nature remain--some
forever. The thought or sounds they represent, the same as the lines
on the tablets of the phonograph, are released but for the time being
and while such thought and sounds (through association) are recalled
to memory. The thought and sounds are evanescent, but the lines which
represent them remain for further use, the same as the lines on the
tablets of the phonograph and the strings of a musical instrument. If
we could read aright the lines which the voice makes on the tablets of
the phonograph or on the negative plates of the photographer, we would
obtain a correct insight into their character. These studies, when
fully developed, may lead to a comprehension of these hieroglyphics,
the same as the Greek translation on the Rosetta stone furnished the
cue to the comprehension of the hieroglyphics of the Egyptian monuments.


What is all this I am writing?

It is an endeavor at giving expression to an impression obtained of
a great subject imperfectly understood. The general ideas underlying
it all are on the lines of truth, but the contours are evanescent,
the lines representing special features ill-defined, while the finer
shadings are almost entirely wanting. It is a stuttering, a stammering,
in matters my mind is too narrow to grasp, incapable of comprehending
in all their bearings, impotent to take in in their ultimate relations.
Still, I am doing what I can with such material as nature has placed
at my disposal. Thought failing to make a clear impression, my pen, I
fear, cannot give a clear expression to it all.

Regarding the subject of stuttering proper, I must still preface it
with some remarks of a general nature. The influx and efflux of
streams of air into and out of our system, called breathing, is of a
very complicated nature. While we designate the same by the general
terms of inspiration and expiration, these streams are of as multiform
a nature as the ethereal fabrics they are intended to weave, whose weft
they form, and whose warp is of a more material nature. Call these
fabrics what you please--actions, speech, feelings, passions, fancies,
sensations, etc. While these streams form innumerable separate systems,
they are all subject to one and the same law--rhythm. The more perfect
the rhythm the higher the development and consequent performance.

While we always breathe, or should breathe, in the same rhythmic order
(the octave) for the sustenance of life in general, we unconsciously
breathe in various other measures for an endless number of other
purposes. Our dual nature, and the duality of the manner in which we
breathe, as a rule enable us to go through these various performances
without a disturbance as to the harmonious character of our existence.
It is a great orchestral performance by instruments of various kinds
and orders, each performer playing his own notes, specially adapted
to his particular part and instrument; yet all coming together in one
harmonious _ensemble_. This fact finds expression, clearly defined, in
the various measures in which metre and rhythm are clad for poetry and
song. The introduction into our system of a rhythmic flow of streams of
air for the various purposes of vocal utterance is conditioned upon a
rhythmic flow of thought.

To perfectly render a poetical conception by words either spoken
or sung, the performer's _mind_ must be in accord with the rhythm
underlying such conception. In that case only will he breathe
and, consequently, speak or sing in the requisite manner for such
production. I should have prefaced all this by saying that, in the same
manner as inspiration and expiration succeed each other in regular
rotation, so do the ordinary measures of long and short (¯˘), or
short and long (˘¯), in simple forms of poetry, succeed each other in
regular rotation; long (¯), or stress, always standing for expiration,
short (˘), or repose, for inspiration. _As a matter of fact, however,
inspiration is of longer duration than expiration._

All other forms are artistic, and are produced by a mode of thinking,
and consequent breathing, as variable as the subject may suggest or
demand. For ordinary speech, while the rhythm is not of the same order
as that for poetry, a rhythmic order of some kind must be, and always
is, observed. That the rhythm is not noticeable is due to the fact
that, while inspiration and expiration in prose writing and ordinary
conversation follow each other in regular rotation, they are not always
accompanied by sound. Hence the rhythmic irregularities of speech
exist only in appearance and in the inartistic manner in which speech
is generally, and prose writing often, produced. A person who speaks
and writes his language _well_, speaks and writes it rhythmically,
always. Good style is synonymous with correct rhythmical expression,
superinduced by correct breathing; rhythmic expression depending
entirely upon rhythmic impression, and the latter upon rhythmic
thought, accompanied by rhythmic breathing.

To write well (that is, a good style), to speak well (as an orator,
actor, or elocutionist), to sing well, it is, above all things,
necessary that the performer's mind should be in a state of conformity
with the situation which is to be described. His flow of thought, and
consequent breathing and mode of expression, will then correspond with
the scope, drift, and circumstance underlying his performance. Unless
this is the case, the latter will be unsatisfactory, unimpressive,
unsympathetic. To prove that for a satisfactory performance this _must_
be the case, it will but be necessary to call attention to the fact
that under various emotions our mode of breathing undergoes great
changes--as under fear, hate, jealousy, indignation, excitement, love,
enthusiasm, benevolence, languor, apathy, etc. Our breathing under
these different circumstances will, the same as the manner of our
expression, undergo various stages of change as to time and measure, as
well as to rhythm, emphasis and intonation.

The character and rapidity of the flow of our blood is of the same
order as our manner of breathing. It is, in fact, as I expect to prove
later on, not only of the same order, but of the same origin and
regulated by the same causes. The flow of the blood is not merely of a
material order, but of a spiritual one as well. While it is acted upon
by the mind it reacts upon the mind.

The thought must be measured and restricted as to time, so as to enable
it to make the proper impression and produce a corresponding expression
_before_ another thought comes along crowding in upon the preceding one
and in so doing _blurring_ the impression made by the latter before it
had been given the time to be expressed. If the necessary time is not
granted for an impression to be made and for the expression thereof
to obliterate the same, the premature flow of another thought, coming
on top of the first, will make a new impression over the previous
one, causing confusion and making a clear expression a matter of
impossibility. Unless our professor, while standing in front of his
blackboard demonstrating before his class, has a sponge in his hand,
and before again writing in the same place wipes out that which he had
written before, the new writing will not be of such a nature that it
can be understood. The slate endures; but the thought and the writing
are always new. Yet, when such writing is of an _impressive_ nature, it
is like that of a palimpsest; though apparently obliterated, its lines
remain, and their meaning can be recalled to memory as often as the
occasion may demand it.

The "muddle" of which I have spoken is oftentimes so great that no
sound of any kind can ensue, the rhythmic flow of sound-producing
streams having been disturbed and prevented from assuming the necessary
shape for their formation into proper sound-waves by this hasty mode of
thinking. The consequence is a hiatus in the natural flow of speech,
which prevents the thought from materializing in the shape of the word
intended to be spoken. This hiatus the victim of such precipitate mode
of thinking generally attempts to bridge over by spasmodic efforts,
which but serve to aggravate the situation, increasing, as they do, the
disorder in the sound-producing lines.

Stuttering being caused by a disorder in these lines, the remedy is
to again restore them to order. The disorder having been caused by a
too hasty mode of thinking, superinduced, as a rule, by a desire _not_
to stutter, or a _fear_ of stuttering, the remedy lies in allaying
this fear. The fear of stuttering, or the anxiety not to stutter,
which obtains while the speaker is producing thought, _itself being
thought_, and coming on top of the thought intended to be uttered,
brings about, or at least aggravates, the very difficulty he was trying
to overcome. Mere thought may wander off and again return to its theme,
unrestrained, and without causing disturbance; but thought which is
to be _vocally_ uttered must strictly adhere to its subject. There
is no impression to be made by the former which must remain until it
is released by vocal sound; impression and expression being almost
simultaneous. In place of making a spasmodic effort, therefore, the
stutterer should endeavor to be calm, and to then calmly _think_ the
word or sentence over again which has become a stumbling-block in his
way. After doing so, he will have no trouble uttering it.

The fact that stutterers experience no difficulty in singing is a proof
of the correctness of these assertions. While singing, the performer's
streams of life and organs of speech are all _tuned_ to one harmonious
measure. His frame of mind being securely in accord with his theme,
his thought, devoid of fear, flows evenly along with his song. There
is no occasion for haste or trepidation in this instance,--there
cannot be, haste being the opposite to and the enemy of harmony, the
latter meaning a continuous return of the same measure and the same
mode of breathing, the former irregularity and disorder in the mode of

Besides, song, belonging to the pharynx, is spiritual; it is of our
inner nature, and therefore restful and continuous. While speech, which
belongs to the oral cavity, is material; it is of our outer nature,
and therefore subject to every impression, influence, and consequent
change. Elocution, declamation, or recitation, on the other hand,
partake of both our inner and our outer nature. They belong in part to
the pharynx and in part to the oral cavity.

Experiments may be made by means of making these respective parts rigid
which will establish the correctness of these assertions.

These experiments can also be made by the application of mechanical
pressure. When pressing your hand or fingers against your throat you
will be unable to speak, though it will not prevent you from singing.
By pressing them against the back of your neck you will be unable to
sing, though you may speak. By pressing them against either side of
your neck you will be unable to recite, though you may both speak
and sing. The slightest pressure, even, will produce these results.
Let me remark, however, that unless the _thought_ of the performance
accompanies it, a mere mechanical pressure will not suffice.

That _thought_, improperly exercised, is the cause of stuttering or
stammering, obtains from the fact, that the utterance of the singer,
elocutionist or actor, being a matter of memory, and not of original
thought, is _not_ subject to these troubles; though the utterance of
the same persons while speaking, and in so doing, _thinking_, may be
subject thereto.

Not appreciating its significance, I used to laugh with everybody else
at the anecdote of a stuttering boy in an apothecary shop, who had been
sent down after some article in the cellar. Returning, pale, trembling,
and _stammering_, his master cried out, "Sing, sing!" whereupon he
delivered himself thus:

    "Der spiritus im keller brennt,
    Und alles steht in flammen."
    ("The spirits, master, are aflame,
    And all things are a-burning.")

In a recent number of _Cosmopolis_, Prof. Max Müller said:

    "Charles Kingsley was a great martyr to stammering, and it was
    torture to him to keep conversation waiting until he could put
    his thoughts into words. Singularly enough, at church, Kingsley
    did not stammer at all in reading or speaking; but on his way
    home from church he would say to one with whom he was walking:
    'Oh, let me stammer now; you won't mind it!'"

While his thoughts were concentrated on his subject, which had probably
been elaborated beforehand and was expressed in rhythmic language,
besides being obliged to speak slowly and deliberately so as to be
heard and understood, he experienced no difficulty. Still, he was under
a restraint. As soon as he was by himself again, he commenced to think
impulsively, as probably was his habit, and gave vent to a torrent of
thoughts, which overleaped each other like waters rushing through a
broken dam.

There are two main forms in which this trouble manifests itself. The
one is a surfeit, a crowding together of sounds, all of which want to
come to the surface at one and the same time, like a crowd of people
during a panic trying to rush out through the same door, thus causing
a jam. This form, creating a hiatus in vocal utterance, is generally
designated by the term "stammering." That which is called "stuttering,"
on the other hand, consisting, as it does, in a repetition of the
same sound, is due to the opposite cause. While the former is due
to too great an effort, this is due to a paucity of effort. The
sound-furnishing element is not under control; it leaks out against
the will, it runs away with you. Hence a repetition of the form once
assumed, in consequence of a lack of nerve force, of a rein to keep it
in check, of a brake preventing it from rushing down-hill with you;
in contradistinction to the act of stammering, in which the brake had
been too forcibly applied, the watch wound up too firmly and beyond its

In the case of stammering the impression has been too quick in shaping
itself into words; in the other it has been too slow in so doing. In
the former case too many moulds have been formed for proper impression;
while in the latter the sound is spoken before the mould has been
properly and _completely_ formed; that part only which had been formed
being uttered and repeated. In the case of stammering there is a
surfeit of impression but a want of sound; in that of stuttering there
is a want of impression but a surfeit of sound. A stammerer is one who
takes in too much, a stutterer one who takes in too little, air for his
hasty way of thinking.

When this trouble happens with one and the same person--as it sometimes
does--it first assumes one shape and then the other; it turns a
complete somersault in so doing. The balance, the equilibrium, the
point of gravitation, previously overleaped on one side, is again
overleaped, and the person lands on its extreme other side. While a
stammerer he had too much ballast on board, now he has too little.

A stammerer can return to the point of gravitation by throwing some of
his surplus ballast overboard. _His tongue being tied to his lower jaw,
in which position he is constantly taking in more air than he needs, he
must raise it in order to let the surplus out from beneath the same._

A stutterer, whose tongue is running away with him, owing to an
insufficiency of ballast, must take in enough (inspire sufficiently) to
bring him back to his point of gravitation. _His tongue is in a loose
state of elevation, in which position the air is constantly streaming
out (expiring) from beneath the same._ He must _lower_ it to have _his_
balance restored, as in so doing the air will stream in over and above
the tongue until the equilibrium has been restored. In other words,
the person who is thus agitated must calm himself, he must relax from
an overstrain in either one direction or the other. The diaphragm,
holding the balance of power, will be found to be in as uncontrollable
a condition as the tongue, _with which it always acts in unison_. In
restoring the tongue to a normal condition we restore the diaphragm to
a normal condition.

The institutions for the cure of stuttering, stammering, and
intermediate stages of the same trouble, attempt to bring about a state
of restoration of the disturbed balance by means arrived at through
experience. The real cause being unknown, the remedies must necessarily
be restricted. If persons thus afflicted will take their own cases in
hand and treat them in conformity with the precepts here laid down, the
chances are in favor of their being cured where no other remedy had
been of any avail.

As the preceding remarks have been made from the point of view of an
English-speaking person, the standpoint of a German being diametrically
opposite, the same must all be reversed to fit the case of a German,
in so far as locality is concerned. _For stammering, the tongue of a
German is closely wedged in, in the direction of the roof of the mouth;
for stuttering, it is loosely pointing downward._ This is owing to the
fact that a German inspires from under and beneath, and expires from
over and above, his tongue; just the reverse of the manner in which
this is done by an English-speaking person.

In order to efficiently cure the trouble of stuttering, it is necessary
that the act of breathing and sound-production should be closely
studied with every separate nationality, as these processes differ with
all nationalities; this difference being very pronounced as between
Germans and Anglo-Saxons. For an American to go to Germany, therefore,
to be cured of this trouble, is as false a step as for a German to go
to the United States or England for this purpose.

While I have in the preceding endeavored to give an account of the
general causes which result in stuttering, I have not touched upon such
special causes as are directly connected with the character and origin
of vocal sounds; the explanation of which must be postponed to a future


By an accident, in some respects not unlike the one which drew
Roentgen's attention to the light by whose aid we have learned to look
into and through opaque bodies, I (myself an accident, an appearance
on and soon to be a disappearance from the illuminated surface of the
earth) have discovered eternal laws, by whose aid we shall be able to
comprehend much of what has heretofore been as a closed book to us,
regarding our physical and psychical nature and the exercise of our
faculties and functions.

During my endeavors to overcome the difficulties which my German tongue
offered to the perfect pronunciation of the English "r" sound, and
during an almost frantic effort on one occasion at so doing, I was
amazed by the fact that while one "r" came to the surface from over and
above the tongue, another made its appearance from under and beneath
the same. The latter was the "r" of the voice of the œsophagus. Of all
this, however, I have spoken at length in my previous publication.

Though it occurred to me at once like a flash that this was a
revelation of the greatest importance, its real significance was only
made clear to me in the course of time. No matter how I view it, as
time progresses it assumes greater and greater proportions. There is
no event in the history of man which appears to me to be of greater
significance. Through this "accident" I was induced to look closer
and closer into my inner nature, where, to my amazement, I found
that a world, apparently silent and mysterious, and supposed to be
unapproachable, was the abode of numberless physical and psychical
phenomena, clearly defined and definable.

The "r" which came to the surface from beneath my tongue by way of
the œsophagus was the cathode, the negative end of this sound. The
_product_ of its combination with the _simple_ "r" (which came to the
surface from over and above the tongue by way of the trachea) I had
hitherto produced when attempting to speak English, was the _vocal_
"r" sound of the English language; the "r" I had hitherto produced
having been the anode--the positive and first part of this sound only.
As Roentgen's cathodic light has illuminated the physical body, so
have cathodic sounds illumined for me the spiritual body of my mundane
existence. I am endeavoring to show my fellowmen this "new light,"
whose lustre, also invisible on ordinary occasions, when once seen is
so great that it will never again fade from the memory of the beholder.
As time progresses, it will continue to penetrate ever more deeply into
regions hitherto considered to be impervious to any kind of light;
regions whose phenomena have been called supernatural, or, at least,
beyond the sphere of the knowledge of man. All other anodes or cathodes
of which we have obtained any knowledge belong to physical phenomena
only. The cathode I have discovered belongs to our spiritual life,
being a part of a living vocal sound.

Think of it! To be able to divide the essence of life and to obtain two
_living_ parts, each endowed with a life of its own! This is a nearer
approach to the knowledge of life than any ever attained before. A
_vocal_ sound is an entity. From entities we cannot learn anything.
They are phenomena complete in themselves. Regarding their innermost
nature, they have always been to us as a closed book. They offer us no
vantage-ground; no opening, no breach, through which we can enter into
the mysterious process of their existence. No matter whether such life
or existence be that of the minutest parasite of a minute vegetable
growth, that growth itself, or the giant of the forest; whether it
be that of a microbe or the microbe of a microbe; whether it be the
essence of a thought, a sigh, a tear, a look, a vocal sound, or of a
human being--their innermost natures are all alike mysterious to us. I
have succeeded in analyzing a vocal sound, and this apparently simple
proceeding has opened up to me endless vistas in endless directions. I
have reduced this entity into its natural elements, and have again put
these together. After resolving it into two lives I have again formed
it into one. I can bring about this analysis as well as this synthesis
at will at any time.

All know what is meant by vocal sounds, yet few, I repeat, know what
are simple sounds, though constantly used by everybody while whispering
or uttering exclamations, while surprised, alarmed, frightened, etc. My
accomplishment, therefore, is but the _recognition_ of the nature of a
thing constantly before us and brought to our consciousness through our

Simple sounds are the anodes, the beginnings of sounds. There is no
life in them, no rhythm, no melody, no light, no grace, no beauty.
These are imparted to them by the fusion of the cathode element of
vocal sounds with this, the anode; the spiritual with the material.
The anode is formed first. It is the passive element, the female,
the patient, the waiting, which must have been before the male, the
impatient, the aggressive. The thing to be fructified must have been
before that which fructifies.

The anode is quiescent until the cathode comes along, joins it, and
infuses life into it. The creation of a vocal sound is an act of
generation. The cathode, after overwhelming the anode, penetrates it
and diffuses itself throughout it, and thus forms a union whose result
is the production of a vocal sound. Similar unions between anodes and
cathodes are formed a myriad-fold every moment during time's progress,
and result in the creation of an electric spark, or a succession of
sparks, called an electric light, or any other light or fire, or of a
thought, or of the embryo to a new life of any and every description,
etc.; while a discord, a stutter, a _smouldering_ fire, the sight
of a thing too dimly seen to be recognized, a cut or broken limb, a
suspense, a disappointment, a _suppressed_ action or passion, etc., are
anodes not joined by their cathodes. By the juncture of a cathode with
an anode we exercise our faculties, we become conscious of a sight, a
sound, an odor, a taste, etc.; the anode being vested in the thing to
be seen, heard, smelled, or tasted,--the cathode in ourselves.

_While the anode of a vocal sound may be uttered audibly, the cathode,
by itself, cannot be uttered--the spiritual cannot be materialized
except in conjunction with the material._ The anode, the physical, is
inert until the cathode, the spiritual, has formed a juncture with it,
has been alloyed with it. Every phenomenon of which we become conscious
is the result of a process of this nature. The more perfect the union,
the more perfect the outcome or result, the phenomenon.

In our ordinary speech this alloy, this union, is of a mutable and
evanescent, in oratory and song it is of a more continuous and lasting,
nature. With persons speaking a foreign tongue, and with the deaf, it
is superficial, imperfect; in many cases, in fact, we hear only anodes,
no union having been effected. The amalgamation, the alloy of the
finer with the coarser, the higher with the lower, the spiritual with
the material, is not at all or but imperfectly performed; the coarser
element prevails and makes its presence felt in every utterance. The
more perfect the union between anodes and cathodes in vocal utterance,
the higher will be the performance, the more perfect the speech, the
more beautiful the song, the more stirring, the more soulful; the
nearer they come to our hearts.

How do I know all this? I will tell you: By watching the _beginning_
of a vocal sound; the performance actually going on within us, while
such sound is first being created. This performance is of an inverse
order as between German and English, in so far as the anode for German
vocal sounds is located to the right, the cathode to the left. The
cathode approaches the anode from left to right; while in the creation
of an English vocal sound the anode is to the left, the cathode to the
right, and the latter approaches the former from right to left. The
location where the union _appears_ to take place is in the chest, near
the heart; for German sounds, to the right thereof, for English to the
left. As a matter of fact, however, it is in the heart itself.

What does the motion in which anode and cathode approach each
other--which is not direct as it at first appears to the observer, but
vastly circuitous--signify?

The circulation through the vascular system of the elements (of the
æther) creating vocal sounds, or the _circulation of vocal sounds_. The
proofs that this important fact actually obtains will be furnished very
positively and very circumstantially at a later date in connection with
that part of these expositions which treats on vocal sounds.




Nature will have its right always. What is this right in regard to
vocal utterance? It is the manner in which we breathe. When we violate
nature's right in our mode of breathing for vocal expression, our
penalty is that such expression will not be what it is intended to be,
what it should be; the idiomatic expression of every language being the
outcome of a special mode of breathing for the same.

_All_ my observations in the first instance owe their origin to the
fact that I was breathing in a manner directly opposite to the one
in which it was necessary for me to breathe to correctly produce the
idiomatic expression of the English language. It was not until after
this fact had become clear to my mind that I began to extract from my
organs of speech those sounds which appear so abnormally different and
"strange" to the ear of the bewildered foreigner, who finds himself
completely at a loss how to produce them. The better he becomes
acquainted with the language, the more thoroughly he becomes convinced
of the fact that his mode of speaking English is different from that of
the native-born. Nor will a German _ever_ succeed in speaking English
as it should be spoken until he succeeds in _reversing_ his mode of
breathing. He must go straight to the antipodes in sound production;
he must stand on his head, so to say, instead of on his feet. I shall
fully explain what this means later on.

I venture to make the assertion that no other person besides myself has
ever learned to pronounce a foreign language _idiomatically correct_,
as I have, by means of applying to his mode of speaking rules based
on actual knowledge or scientific principles. In this manner I have
succeeded in learning to speak English with less of the tinge of a
foreign accent adhering to my speech than usually is the case with
foreigners who have commenced to speak it as late in life as I did. I
do not say this vauntingly, for I do not consider this accomplishment
in itself as of a very high order; but I say it to vindicate my claim
that I have discovered the principles on which the production of
language is based, and offer my personal pronunciation of the English
language to which these principles have been applied as a proof that
I have done so. I am still learning, however, for it takes time and
practice and a great deal of patience to dislodge the old habit from
its wonted haunts and to assign its quarters to a foreign guest. My old
familiar dwelling has thus become a lodging for the English language,
though I can return to it at will with my old and dearly beloved mother
tongue and be comfortable therein.

The foreign guest, however, who came to dwell therein, does not use
my native home, in his mode of entering it or going forth from it, in
the old familiar way, nor does he use the same apartments for the
same purposes. He enters at the back gate while I used to enter at
the front; he leaves it at the front gate while I left at the back.
He opens his shutters to the east, while I used to look out from the
west, etc. Such differences as these in our mode of breathing exist
throughout the entire length and breadth of both languages. The sounds
we have imbibed in our early youth, however, will always be more
familiar and nearer to us and dearer than those of any other language,
no matter how closely the latter may enter into our lives and our being
at a later period.


What constitutes a given number of people a nation, besides their
history, their political organization, and the geographical position of
their territory? What makes every member belonging to a nation, whether
he lives within its territory or has emigrated therefrom, a different
being from every member of any other nation? What makes each member of
a nation resemble every other member thereof, not only in regard to
vocal expression but also in regard to general cast of features, build
of body, movements, gesticulations, etc., and in what may be summed up
as national traits of character?

No one will deny the fact that such differences exist, as between
Germans, Frenchmen, and Englishmen, for instance. This difference is
not racial, as they all belong to the Caucasian race. It can scarcely
be climatic with nations whose territory is adjacent to each other;
nor is it likely to be religious, historical, or political. There is
nothing very decidedly different in the situation and composition of
these various nations and the individuals of which they are composed,
except their _language_.

I maintain that language is not only the main point of difference, but
that it is the cause and origin of all other main points of difference.
As language is the main gift which distinguishes men from animals, so
it is also the principal distinguishing mark as between one nation
and another. I maintain, and expect to prove, that the language--that
is, any specific language--acquired in childhood becomes an integral
part of a person's organization, as positively so as any of his other
natural faculties; and that he cannot change it, that is, _in an
idiomatically correct manner_, without changing, to some extent, the
drift of his entire organism. As soon as I began to succeed in speaking
the English language as it is spoken in this country, idiomatically
correct, I changed my nature, to some extent, from that of a German to
that of an American; nor is it possible to learn to speak any language
idiomatically correct without undergoing a similar change. Not alone
my mode of vocal expression, but my motions, my habits, nay, my very
_features_, yes, even my way of _thinking_, in some respects, have
been subjected to such a change; modified, of course, by heredity,
previous habits, and the constant reversion of all this by the frequent
recurrence to my native tongue. In using the term "idiomatically
correct" I mean of course that mode of expression which is peculiar to
a language, its general cast, and which is representative of its genius
and spirit.

To what do I attribute so powerful an influence?

It is not easy to say this comprehensively in a few words. I will
say this much, however: That, language being the outcome of streams
of the vital fluid passing into and out of our composition in a
systematic manner, each system varying with every other system, our
vital organs are differently affected, in conformity with the manner
and the rotation in which these streams reach these different organs;
in other words, in conformity with the manner in which we breathe for
our language. This influence is not confined to the vocal expression
of a _nation_. It is influential with and extends to the special mode
of vocal expression in separate districts, provinces, localities, and
cities; nay, it extends to families and single members belonging to
such families, each separate member's expression being the product of
his special mode of breathing, and differing in some respects from that
of every other member of the same family; _such difference in the mode
of breathing being the reflection of every individual soul_.

The bent of the soul in _individual_ cases determines the flow of these
streams, the same as the bent of the _national_ soul determines the
same for the entire nation. Or, which perhaps would be more correct,
the flow of these streams determines the bent of the individual as
well as national soul. The influence being reciprocal, it would be
difficult to state, as it is with all matters of this kind, _which_
preponderates, _which_ gives the first impulse. It is of the same
order as the old question (never to be solved) aptly expressed in the
homely query, "Which was created first, the hen or the egg?"

It is interesting to note the manner in which the vital streams
affecting the character of the two peoples in regard to whom I have
had the opportunity for many years of making my observations, the
Anglo-Saxon and the German, take their course. With the former the
point of gravitation is located in the abdomen; with the latter in the

This gives the Anglo-Saxon a circuitous route for his expression in
coming to the surface; his mode of respiration being the following:

He inspires into the thorax posteriorly, next into the abdomen
anteriorly. He then expires from the abdomen posteriorly, and from the
thorax anteriorly; vocal expression accompanying the last movement.

A German's mode of respiration is as follows: He inspires into
the abdomen posteriorly, expiring from the abdomen anteriorly; he
then inspires into the thorax anteriorly and expires from the same
posteriorly, the latter movement only being accompanied by sound. You
will notice that in the former case the breath to be expired and to
be accompanied by sound has been held in the thorax until the abdomen
has gone through an inspiration and an expiration; while with Germans,
inspiration into the abdomen as well as into the thorax are succeeded
by expiration from the same, a direct proceeding as against the
indirect of the Anglo-Saxon. Thus the former secures a force reserved
and held and to be drawn upon as it is needed, while the latter
pours forth his vital force in a continuous stream as soon as it is

The point of gravitation determines the mode of breathing and the
production of vocal utterance. With Anglo-Saxons, the point of
gravitation being located in the abdomen, their speech tends from
below, upward; with Germans, the point of gravitation being located
in the thorax, their speech tends from above, downward. The direction
of Anglo-Saxon expression is from the abdomen, where it has its root,
to the thorax; that of the German is from the thorax, where it has
its root, to the abdomen. It will scarcely be necessary for me to say
to the reader, over and over again, "Try this," "Try that"; I wish
it to be understood, once for all, that this recommendation is to be
tacitly implied as accompanying every statement, every proposition,
every assertion I make. Personally I can go through any one and all of
the performances at any time and at a moment's notice. In making these
experiments, speak or sing _after_ breathing in the prescribed manner.
The prescribed manner being the one in which the _impression_ is made
and from which the _expression_ is produced as a matter of course and
of necessity. An Anglo-Saxon will not be able to utter a word spoken
or sung in _his_ language after breathing in the _German_ fashion, nor
will a German be able to do so in _his_ language after breathing in
the _Anglo-Saxon_ manner. Change either manner of breathing but in the
least, and you will not be able to express yourself in either German or
English; but you may thus be able to express yourself in some other
language. It is, of course, understood that we breathe into the abdomen
through the œsophagus, into the thorax through the trachea.

In trying propositions like the one now under consideration, it may
not be easy for persons who have not previously given any thought to
matters of this kind to successfully try them. You must give yourself
up to these things, must be _at home_ for them only, for a period at
least, until you have become thoroughly engrossed with them. It is not
a study to be superficially attained. You must enter into it with your
whole soul, your entire being. If you do, you will eventually become as
familiar with the principles underlying these matters as you are with
the letters of the alphabet, or the figures representing the numerals,
and be able to apply the same in as easy a manner and for as various
purposes as you do these.

Their _indirect_ mode of breathing of Anglo-Saxons produces a
deliberate mode of speech; while German breathing, being _direct_,
produces a speech as rapid in its formation as in its utterance.
_Action being the counterpoise of speech, is of the inverse order of
the latter. English speech being slow and deliberate, English action is
rapid and direct; German speech being rapid and direct, German action
is slow and deliberate._ English character, the same as English speech,
is distinguished by patience and forbearance; these, when finally
exhausted, are succeeded by sudden and violent outbreaks. German
character, the same as German speech, is alternately exuberant and
depressed; contented, but also of a disposition to find fault whenever
the occasion may arise.

Anglo-Saxons, in consequence of their _indirect_ mode of expression,
are in possession of a reserve force always at their command, but only
called upon on special occasions; hence long-continued forbearance,
and then--a blow for liberty. With Germans, in consequence of their
_direct_ mode of expression, their vital force is continuously being
engendered, and as continuously being exhausted. Hence, they are in the
habit of constantly protesting, and as constantly submitting to the
_status quo_.

The character of Anglo-Saxons, in viewing things from a practical
standpoint, is as far removed from the ideal as it is from the
pessimistic. It is neither exuberant, overstrained, exalted, nor
despondent; but cool, well balanced, and matter-of-fact. It is not like
the German:

    "Himmelhoch jauchzen, zu Tode betruebt."
    ("Raised to the sky with delight;
    Depressed to the ground with despair.")

A German is influenced according to whether he can or cannot, while
losing sight of the real, satisfy his craving for the ideal, for
which, in his direct and impulsive nature, he is constantly yearning;
which the Anglo-Saxon, seeing it is beyond his reach, abandons as

To comprehend the ideal of whatsoever nature, the German, with
endless patience, tries to solve the most complicated problems; after
solving them he is often satisfied with the result in the abstract;
while the practical Anglo-Saxon uses this result for his utilitarian
purposes. The philosophical German patiently unravels a Gordian knot;
the practical Anglo-Saxon, "Alexander-like, cuts it in two with his
sword" ("Wie Alexander haut ihn auseinander"). Germans love education
for its own sake; it makes of them superior beings, giving them
treasures more highly prized than any others, and far more lasting.
Anglo-Saxons, on the other hand, get their education for a purpose, and
with a view to their worldly advancement. While with Germans education
is "Selbstzweck" (its reward consisting in its possession), with
Anglo-Saxons its reward consists in its application. The question so
often agitated in this country, whether a university education may or
may not be of benefit (that is, in furthering his worldly advancement)
to any one not intending to embrace one of the learned professions,
would never arise in Germany; practical value and education being
things apart, the latter taking first rank always and never being
subordinated to the former.

Schiller says:

    "[Der Edle] _legt_ das Hohe in das Leben,
    Doch er sucht es nicht darin."

    ("[Our aim should be] the noble to inculcate into life,
    And not to search for it therein.")

I am inclined to think that the opposite of this is the usual tendency
with Anglo-Saxons.

Many other causes might be cited, many other results. These, however,
must answer the present purpose, which is, to show that the course
taken by the vital streams in breathing, besides affecting their
speech, affects the _character_ of nations.

All this might be summed up in saying: The point of gravitation with
Anglo-Saxons being located in the abdomen, which represents the
material side of life, their being is primarily rooted in the material,
and reaches the ideal by way of the material. The German, on the other
hand, having his point of gravitation in the thorax, which represents
the spiritual part of our existence, reaches the material by way of the
ideal, in which _his_ being is primarily rooted.

I owe the reader an apology for anticipating in using the terms
"streams of life" and "the point of gravitation." These are not words
without a definite meaning, however; on the contrary, they are of the
greatest significance and of a very definite meaning. Still, I must tax
his patience for a proper explanation thereof till I shall be able to
reach them in due course of time. We cannot approach the steep crest of
a hill by a straight line of ascent, but must patiently wind around and
around its circumference to be able to finally reach its summit.


It will require but a single example, familiar to all, to still more
forcibly show that it is _language_ through whose agency national
traits of character and physical development are produced. How do you
suppose that the wonder has been wrought, and is still daily being
worked, of the great mass of humanity reaching these shores from
foreign lands being merged into one homogeneous nation? The remark is
often made that "it is the climate." If it were the climate, or other
conditions specifically belonging to this country, how is it that
foreigners coming here at maturity always remain foreigners, while
their offspring born and bred here become Americans? Even children born
elsewhere, but coming here at an early age, soon become "Americanized,"
while their parents remain foreigners always. These children must have
taken a potent draught, not partaken of by their parents, to not only
change their mode of vocal but also of physical expression; nay, the
vital expression of their entire being. That draught is the English
language. Most foreigners respectively married to an American wife or
husband, and rearing a family of American children, remain foreigners
to the end of their lives.

It often happens that parents of foreign birth cannot comprehend the
character and actions of their own children, who are _so_ different,
being superficial and frivolous, where they are deep and sound; cool
and calculating where they are fire and flame. Yet these children
possess sterling qualities of another kind which their parents do not

I call to mind two brothers, sons of German parents, born in this
country. With the eldest-born the German influence was potent. He was
made to speak German at home and at school, and is to-day, though
married to an American, more German in his manner and appearance
than American, while his mode of speaking the English language also
has something "German" in it. His brother, on the other hand, more
particularly reared under native influences, is a thorough American.
There was nothing in this case but the influence of language which
could have caused this difference. Similar examples might be cited

If language is capable of exercising so powerful an influence it
must be more than a superficial acquirement. It must be woven into
and interwoven with our innermost nature. What is there in the
English language to make a German's broad and massive forehead, high
cheek-bones, full lips, short chin, and round face, in his offspring
sink into narrow forms and long, oval lines? What makes the lower
jaw, which in him was short and round, in these children sink down
and extend outward, while the upper jaw recedes back? What is it that
makes the jovial and happy expression of the German in his children
change into features of an impassive nature, from which they are only
roused when in action?--features of which it has been said that it is
sometimes difficult to know whether they, sphinx-like, cover a happy
or unhappy disposition; a disposition sometimes so self-possessed and
reserved that its owner might almost reply as Alva did, when asked why
he never smiled: "I would not so demean myself before myself as to
smile." Yet when such a face (especially when it is a girl's) _does_
smile, its passive features are lighted up in a manner so enchanting
that its beauty amply compensates for its previous apathy.

I do not wish to say, however, that Anglo-Saxons do not _feel_ either
joy or sorrow as keenly as Germans do (though I have my doubts even
on this score); but they do not carry their feelings with them on
the surface. They sink them into that reserve, at once proud and
self-possessed, which does not wish others to take cognizance of their
private affairs. The nature of the Anglo-Saxon is one of _reserve_,
that of the German one of _abandon_ and _laisser-aller_. This is
not due to heredity in the first instance, but to the influence of
language, by which character and habits are formed.

Dr. Holmes relates that, after a protracted search for his son, who
had been wounded in the battle of Gettysburg, when at last finding the
"Captain" in a transport train, he went up to him, simply saying, "How
are you, Bob?" and he replying, "How are you, Dad?"--stating at the
same time, "Such is the force of our national habit that, especially in
the presence of strangers, we suppress the impulse of our most ardent
feelings," or words to that effect. A similar proceeding under such
circumstances would be considered "unnatural" among Germans.

Regarding the change of features, as between foreign-born (German)
parents and their English-speaking offspring, by which the latter's
assume a shape which makes the œsophagus predominate over the trachea,
it will be as impossible for these children to speak _idiomatically
correct_ German as it is for their parents, with whom the trachea
predominates over the œsophagus, to speak idiomatically correct
English. When my features assume the proper shape for English speech, I
cannot produce a single correct German sound, and when they assume the
proper shape for German speech, it is as impossible for me to produce a
correct English sound.

I expect that this statement will be hotly disputed. The measure of
our ordinary mode of listening, however, must not be applied to these
matters. In some rare instances the difference is so slight that it
takes a very acute ear to notice it.


While speaking our native tongue our muscles move, our sinews tend,
our vessels lean, _our_ blood throbs, and our nerves tingle with the
essence of our language in _its_ direction, and not in the direction
of any other language. We not only speak and sing our language, but we
gesticulate it, we walk it, dance it, write it, think it, smile it,
and sorrow in it. Everything we do is done differently from the same
thing done by a person speaking another language. The movements of the
muscles of a German are centripetal, while those of an Anglo-Saxon
are centrifugal. With a German they close in around the mouth; with
an Anglo-Saxon they depart from the mouth upward and downward. Hence
the broad features of the German _versus_ the elongated ones of the
Anglo-Saxon. Look at the old people. The centrifugal action with an
Anglo-Saxon even in old age still leaves his form erect, his face
serene, scarcely showing a wrinkle, either on his forehead, his
cheeks, or around the eyes and mouth. Apart from his bleached hair,
he frequently retains a quite youthful appearance. The centripetal
action with a German in old age, on the other hand, has a tendency to
bend his form and draw it together, and to shrivel up his skin into
innumerable wrinkles, so that his mouth often resembles the mouth
of a purse drawn close together. This youthful appearance with aged
English-speaking people reflects on their customs and their costume,
which latter retains much of the tidiness of their younger days.
Germans, on the other hand, age soon. This fact is so apparent that
they conform their habits and general appearance to their age. They
feel old, and unhesitatingly submit to their aged condition. They often
appear old when still comparatively young. English-speaking old people,
on the other hand, are never too old not to wish to appear young. For
the terms "Greis" and "Greisin," which imply a weakened and somewhat
helpless condition, there is no corresponding expression in the English

Observe a gang of laborers carrying a heavy log. If there are Germans
among them, their heads and shoulders will be bent, as well as their
knees, resembling caryatides in Gothic churches. _They carry from
below, upward._ Those who speak English, on the other hand, will walk
with heads erect, straight shoulders, and stiff knees, resembling the
caryatides of the Greek temples. _They carry from above, downward._

The German mode of expression is produced by contraction, expansion,
contraction; the English by expansion, contraction, expansion. For
the former, contraction takes place _towards_ the diaphragm, first
upward and then downward; that is, from the feet upward, and then from
the head downward. For the latter, expansion takes place _from_ the
diaphragm, first upward and then downward; that is, from the diaphragm
towards the head, and then from the diaphragm towards the feet.

Artists must study these things if they want to get a proper insight
into life, and the action of life, characteristic of different nations.
The simple study of anatomy gives them no clue to these matters.
Everything we do is done differently from the same thing being done
by a person speaking another language. The books on physiology do not
make mention of these matters. They treat all nations alike. They tell
an Englishman that in closing his mouth the muscles of the upper lip
by a direct action are first raised and then lowered, while those of
the lower are first lowered and then raised. As a matter of fact, the
natural tendency with English-speaking people is towards having their
mouths open. In closing the same the lower lip is first raised, then
lowered, the upper is first lowered, then raised, and again lowered;
whereupon the lower lip is raised. This gives three movements to each
lip. The natural tendency with Germans is towards keeping their mouths
closed. To _firmly_ close the same they must raise the upper lip, lower
the lower, lower the upper, and then raise the lower. This gives two
movements to each lip. These motions are _indirect_ with Anglo-Saxons,
with Germans they are _direct_. With Anglo-Saxons the lower jaw is the
main instrument; with Germans it is the upper. With Anglo-Saxons the
lower moves up to the upper; while with Germans the upper closes down
on the lower. That Anglo-Saxons move their lower jaw up to the upper,
to them will appear as a matter of course; yet Germans do not do this;
with them the lower jaw is first raised to be in position to be met by
the upper, the latter being lowered from the atlas by motions made by
the entire upper part of the head.

During speech the head of an Anglo-Saxon remains impassive; there is no
perceptible movement except in connection with his lower jaw. Hence his
stolid immovability in contradistinction with the mobility and vivacity
of a German, whose entire head, often accompanied by his entire body,
appears to take part in his speech. These motions, though fundamental
with these peoples, vary with locality, individual character,
temperament, etc. A German if he keeps his cranium entirely still will
be unable to produce a sound; while an Anglo-Saxon will be unable
to produce a sound if he should move it as Germans do. A German's
power of vocal utterance lies in the flexibility of his cranium; an
Anglo-Saxon's in that of his lower jaw.

An Anglo-Saxon grinds the teeth of his lower jaw, in anger or in
passion, or while masticating food, or under any other circumstances,
against those of his upper; a German grinds those of his upper jaw
against those of the lower.

All motions in connection with vocal utterance on the part of an
Anglo-Saxon are of a decidedly larger compass than those of a German;
the latter being confined to the slight motions he is able to make with
his head, while the former frequently draws down his lower jaw to a
very great extent, far more so than a German would be able to draw down

The "life" with the German is in the upper, with Anglo-Saxons it is
in the lower jaw; the former representing the thorax, the latter the
abdomen. While the thorax, as already mentioned, with Germans is the
predominating vehicle for every performance of life, with Anglo-Saxons
it is the abdomen.

With Germans the lower jaw is the anvil, the upper the hammer; with
Anglo-Saxons the upper is the anvil, the lower the hammer; the action,
the life, always being with the hammer.

If you watch an American girl chewing taffy you will find her lower
jaw going way down, then out, and up again. This is characteristic
of the manner in which Anglo-Saxons breathe and speak. The chewing
process, owing to the adhesion of the taffy to the teeth, together with
the greater flexibility of a girl's jaws, brings out these features
more strikingly than under ordinary circumstances. In chewing taffy
the lower jaw (the hammer) meets with some difficulty in making its
movements; it is therefore lowered as much as possible, so as to be
able to more effectually close in with the upper (the anvil). A German
girl's movements under similar conditions are restricted, being largely
confined to the upper jaw, which cannot be raised to any great extent.

An Anglo-Saxon speaker or singer makes movements similar to such a
chewer of taffy. He draws his lower jaw down and out to make room in
the lower cavity of his mouth for the expression of his main sounds.
These are the product of the abdominal cavity and find their way out
through the œsophagus from _beneath_ the lower surface of the tongue.
Here they pass the replica and the frænum, which impart to them their
rhythmical expression. Any one doubting the correctness of these
statements, by making the replica and the frænum, or either of them,
rigid, will not, if he is an Anglo-Saxon, be able to produce a single
sound; if he is a German, he will still be able to utter his main
sounds coming to the surface through the trachea, over and above his
tongue. An Anglo-Saxon, on the other hand, may still speak when he
makes the vocal cords of the larynx rigid; while a German in that case
will be unable to produce any sound whatsoever. To these matters I have
already called attention in a previous publication, in connection with
the man who was deprived of his larynx by a surgical operation, but not
of his power of speech.

A similar experiment may be made in regard to breathing. By making the
soft palate, representing the thorax, rigid, you will not be able to
inspire, though you may expire. By making the bottom of the mouth close
to your teeth (_the soft palate of the lower jaw_), representing the
abdomen, rigid, you will not be able to expire, though you may inspire.
With a German the precisely opposite facts prevail. By making the soft
palate rigid, he will stop expiration; by making the bottom of the
mouth close to the teeth rigid, he will stop inspiration.

During vocal utterance, with Germans every superior muscle first moves
downward, every inferior upward; while with Anglo-Saxons every superior
muscle first moves upward, every inferior downward. This is preparatory
and previous to action. _During_ action the German opens his mouth, the
Anglo-Saxon closes his. Hence the Anglo-Saxon's half-open mouth while
in repose, and his almost stern expression while in action, pleasurable
action even, which has provoked the witty saying that "Englishmen take
to their pleasures sadly."

The abdomen being the centre of gravity for English speech, and the
lower jaw being in direct communication with the same by way of the
œsophagus, by making the lower jaw rigid you stop the flow of English
sounds. The thorax, on the other hand, being the centre of gravity for
German speech, and the upper jaw being in direct communication with the
same by way of the trachea, in making this jaw rigid you stop the flow
of German sounds.


Speaking of centripetal and centrifugal motion as separate actions,
there must, of course, be a _rotation_ of these actions to produce a
_complete_ action of any kind. We, however, speak of the one which
_prevails_ over the other, as _the_ action under consideration. Thus
when I say a German's mode of eating is centripetal, I say so because
the action of his jaws being direct, it is first centrifugal, then
centripetal, then centrifugal, then again centripetal. When I say an
Anglo-Saxon's mode is centrifugal, I say so because the action of his
jaws being indirect, it is first centripetal, then centrifugal, then
centripetal, then again centrifugal, and finally once more centripetal.
This, with a German, of course, means: Open, close, open, close.
With an Anglo-Saxon it means: Close, open, close, open, close. This,
however, only gives the main features of an act of eating, etc., as
well as uttering sounds; any of these acts, in reality, requiring
_eight_ movements to carry on one _complete_ act. When centrifugal
prevails centripetal follows, and when centripetal prevails centrifugal
follows. It stands to reason that an action which is composed of open,
close, open, close, or close, open, close, open, close, cannot continue
in the same rotation indefinitely, but must be complemented by a motion
of the opposite nature; such complementary action, however, always
being executed inwardly and not outwardly. While the action of the jaws
just now described precedes mastication, the inner action complementary
thereof is accompanied by the act of swallowing.

Thus with a German there are four movements preceding mastication and
four for swallowing; with an Anglo-Saxon there are five movements for
the former and three for the latter; while the act of mastication
proper with both nations consists of eight movements which are repeated
as often as is necessary for the act of swallowing.

The respective manner in which knives and forks are handled in eating
by Germans and Anglo-Saxons, as well as the different manner in which
they dance, and the characters they use in writing, might be cited as
results of the different modes in which centripetal and centrifugal
actions prevail with them. The characters Germans use in writing being
centrifugal in their nature and those Anglo-Saxons use centripetal,
this can only be accounted for by assuming that the muscular action
preparatory to the act of writing in both instances is of the opposite

In consequence of the centrifugal movements of their jaws and lips, the
teeth, with English-speaking persons, are always on exhibition; while
the centripetal movement prevailing with Germans conceals them. The
consequence is that English-speaking people pay the utmost attention to
the care and perfection of their teeth, while Germans, in the highest
ranks even, frequently neglect them to an almost shameful degree. The
direct outcome of this state of affairs is the great advancement which
the practice of dentistry has made in this country and in England,
while it is one to which, on the continent of Europe, but comparatively
little attention is being paid.

With English-speaking people, especially the women, whose lips are more
flexible than men's, the teeth of the upper jaw are more frequently
exposed than those of the lower, for this reason: The œsophagus being
the main instrument for English speech, its sounds, in coming to the
surface from beneath the tongue, require the latter to remain in a
semi-raised position most of the time; the upper lip, being in the
way of these sounds coming to the surface, must be raised for the same
reason; in so doing it exposes the upper row of teeth. The lower lip
is lowered for the sounds of the trachea for the same reason that the
upper is raised for those of the œsophagus. Whenever the upper lip is
raised the lower must be immediately lowered, and vice versa. With
Anglo-Saxons the main movement is with the upper, with Germans it is
with the lower lip. Owing to the centripetal action with Germans, these
movements are less pronounced than they are with English-speaking

The act of smiling being produced in the same order as that of
speaking, the same conditions prevail in relation to the same.

In speaking English you can "feel" that the upper lip is the main
vehicle; _it has all the life in it_. In speaking German you can "feel"
it is the lower, which for that language possesses the life. If you
make the former rigid you cannot speak English; if you make the latter
rigid you cannot speak German.

In connection with the movements of the lips it will be noticed that
while the upper jaw and the roof of the mouth are dominated by the
trachea and the thorax, and the lower jaw and the bottom of the mouth
by the œsophagus and the abdomen, the upper lip is dominated by the
sounds of the œsophagus, and the lower by those of the trachea. This,
however, is owing to mechanical reasons only, as explained, and not to
vital causes.

The foreigner who learns to speak the English language ever so well,
though he may reside here almost a lifetime, if he does not learn
to speak it _idiomatically_ correct, will not be influenced by it to
any great extent in any of the various manners of which I have made
mention, either as regards his features, character, habits, motions,
thoughts, etc.; but, in spite of his "English," he will still be a
foreigner. This foreigner's children, however, provided he does not
influence them to the contrary through pride of his native tongue, and
if reared under native influences, will become thorough Americans.

There need be no fear, therefore, that immigration might bring to
this country a permanent foreign element. Such elements, when they do
come, are of a passing nature. Their offspring, in passing the crucial
test of the English tongue, sink the foreigner into the all-absorbing
element of the English idiom; and in so doing are merged into and
become an integral part of the people of this country. They may come
of whatever nation, from whatever land; no matter how they may appear,
act, or speak, the English idiom will continue to make them Americans,
in their children at least, in the future as it has in the past.
There is thus in the centrifugal force which dominates the speech of
Anglo-Saxons that which is a safeguard to the homogeneity as well as
the institutions of this nation.

An Anglo-Saxon cannot be a bondsman; his language forbids it. The
centrifugal force which prevails with him does not permit fetters. The
children of all foreigners born here and speaking the English language
come under its spell. If language did not have this supreme influence,
there is no other influence that would have prevented this country long
ago from having become inhabited in special districts with permanent
groups of people foreign to its aims and institutions, and alien to its
genius, its character, and its customs. In districts where German is
spoken as the principal language, as in some parts of Pennsylvania and
Wisconsin, it is not, with the native-born at least, the pure German
language, but its idiomatic expression is that of the English tongue.

People say, "It is the climate." We have every climate under the sun;
yet in all that is essential the man from Maine is as thoroughly
American as the one from Texas; the gold-digger in the frozen regions
of the Yukon as the man of the orange-groves of Florida or California;
the American fisherman on the Banks of Newfoundland as those on the
Gulf of Mexico; the man who battles on the plains against the Indians
as he who serves under the banner of the Republic and upholds its glory
in foreign lands and seas. You can tell an American the moment you look
at him. Yet if you ask some of them where their parents were born, you
will hear strange tales of lands and peoples across the sea and far

Language does not work _every_ wonder, of course. The influence of
heredity perpetuates that of language; but the latter is the primary
influence. Nor can it be denied that _every_ foreigner living here
for some time, whether he has learned to speak English or not, will,
to some extent at least, be influenced by the habits, customs,
institutions, climate, and language of this country. This does not
detract, however, from the force of my argument regarding language
and its influence as the most vital force in shaping a people's
characteristic traits, physically as well as spiritually.

There has been of late a great deal of talk and enthusiasm even
regarding the desirability of a closer alliance between the two great
English-speaking nations; their natural affinity and kinship. This
affinity, this belonging together, this being of one family and one
stock, is commonly expressed by this term, "English-speaking peoples."
That which I have endeavored to explain at length is thus tacitly
acknowledged to be correct through the use of this term, which implies
that it is _the English tongue_ which makes these peoples one in
sentiment, in feeling, in their aims and purposes, as it makes them
one in their physical appearance, their motions, the exercise of their
faculties and functions, etc.



While the English language makes Americans of all foreigners, it does
not, of course, obliterate race distinctions as long as races continue
to exist as such. Persons of alien races, nevertheless, when born in
this country and reared under native influences, will become "American"
in a truer sense than foreigners belonging to the Caucasian race coming
here at maturity. I dare say Frederick Douglass was truly more of an
American, in all this word implies, than any foreigner who ever came to
live here; and so are all the better classes of native-born negroes,
in a certain sense, more truly American, this indescribable something
which constitutes a nation, than any aliens whosoever.

A gentleman once told me that, travelling on a steamboat on one of
the New England rivers, he had been inadvertently listening to a
conversation carried on behind him, between what seemed to be two New
England farmers. On rising from his seat, he saw that one of the men
was a Chinaman, dressed like the other and conversing precisely as he

Seeing an acquaintance, he pointed out the Chinaman and asked if he
knew who he was.

"That's Jimmy O'Connor; he's from So-and-so."

"I mean the Chinaman."

"Yes, the Chinaman; that's him. You know he was picked up at sea,
when still a baby, by a New Bedford whaler, and was brought up in the
captain's family, who adopted him. He's as good a farmer and as true an
American as you can find anywhere."

These studies are meant to be purely objective, and have no concern
with politics or policies, regarding undesirable immigration,
or issues of a similar nature. But language is nationality, and
nationality language, always, in the first instance; and the purer
a language is spoken, the truer, purer, and better such nationality
will be expressed and represented by those who thus speak it. What an
incentive to aim at the purest and best expression of language, for
any people! But it will be said that language is subject to change.
If it is, so will the people who speak it to some extent change with
it. Such change, however, is in its dress, in words mainly; rarely
and at long intervals, and under very peculiar circumstances only, in
its expression. As a matter of fact, I doubt whether a change of the
_idiomatic expression ever_ takes place.

The difference existing between the English spoken in the United States
and the mother country might be cited as an example. The idiomatic
expression is precisely the same. But the necessary self-reliance of
the first settlers, the privation, the barter and exchange, the vast
extent of the territory of this country, the greater independence
enjoyed by its people, etc., might be named as reasons for the greater
dash and freedom, together with a possible want of culture, as compared
with the language spoken by educated Englishmen, prevailing in its

The same influences prevail regarding the general appearance, motions,
and characteristic traits of these respective nations. Though closely
allied and connected in a specific, and very nearly allied to each
other in a general sense, there is that which distinguishes the English
of the old world from those of the new, and which can be easily

Being centrifugal, the English idiom, octopus-like, embraces anything
and everything that comes within the radius of its omnivorous capacity,
without, however, losing its original character. It is like a fisherman
who has hung out his net in the ocean, taking in all that comes along;
or like the sea itself, greedy without end. It has no scruples about
roots and construction, but construes everything according to its wants
and adapts it to its uses as it comes along from any quarter.

These adopted children, these waifs, however, it must not be lost
sight of, before they become integral parts of English speech must
submit to a change of their original idiomatic expression. No matter
who came--Celts, Romans, Angles, Saxons, or French--the people of the
British Islands, while adopting their _terms_ of expression, remained
true to their original _idiomatic_ expression. As this country absorbs
people from the whole world and makes one homogeneous American nation
of them, so has the English language absorbed, and is still absorbing,
words from every other people's language, and has transformed them into
one homogeneous language of its own.

Comparative philology, if it wants to accomplish that which would be
most worthy of its efforts, will have to come down to these strong and
basic roots of language.

The German language, whose idiomatic expression is centripetal, on the
other hand, does not possess the same capacity for adopting foreign
words and adapting them to its idiom. When it does adopt them, as,
for instance, those of French origin, they are pronounced, not in the
German, but, as far as the German people are capable of so doing, in
the French manner. They could not, in fact, be pronounced in the German
manner, the German language being a close corporation, so to say, which
does not admit of any foreign shareholders; while the English language
is a company open to all comers. While it is the endeavor of Germans
to _purify_ their language by expelling as far as possible any foreign
word and element therefrom, Anglo-Saxons are constantly adopting
new words from foreign languages. It would be equal to the labor of
Sisyphus for Anglo-Saxons to endeavor to purify their language from
foreign words, in the same sense that Germans are attempting to purify

It appears to me that the capacity of England for successful
colonization is largely due to the centrifugal force inherent in its
language, while the want of success of Germany for the same purpose is
due to the absence of this force. Anglo-Saxon government tends toward
decentralization, German toward centralization. I say this in spite of
the fact that Germany is still divided into many principalities; the
fact of its adherence to this undesirable condition being a proof of
the correctness of this assertion rather than otherwise--Germans not
being able to readily get out of that in which they are once rooted. In
regard to governing peoples in distant territories or colonies, this
tendency is of importance. English government, being undemonstrative,
is more effective than German, which is demonstrative, meddlesome,
and therefore offensive; the former being material and practical, the
latter immaterial and inclined to be visionary.

In a word, where are we to find explanations regarding national traits
of character except through inner motive powers, productive of results
individual as well as national? There is no factor which exercises an
influence upon a nation as a unit so wide in extent and of so powerful
a nature as that of language. It is the _only_ motive power, in fact,
which every member of a nation shares with every other member thereof,
but not with any member of any foreign nation.


Although it is a well known fact that every language has an idiomatic
expression, an intonation of its own, I am not aware of any attempt
ever having been made at definitely stating what such expression,
or intonation, really consists in; and in what respect it differs,
as between one language and another. Yet this fact should be the
most important of all in connection with ethnological studies. It is
necessary to know what a people's idiomatic expression is before we can
begin to make a study of its language, in comparison with that of any
other people, by which we may expect to arrive at conclusions of any
real value in an ethnological sense.

In comparison with idiomatic expression, the study of the roots of
words and their derivation, it appears to me, is of but secondary
importance; idiomatic expression being the _kernel_ in which the tree
of national expression had its incipiency, its origin. It is the
life which pulsates through its veins, in which it has its stay and
maintenance; the nerves which tingle with its intelligence, its genius,
its soul. Take away this soul, and it ceases to exist. For every
language there must have been a strong impulse making an impression
before there could have been any expression at all. This impulse must
have been of so powerful and continuous a nature as to have left its
impression upon the minds of a sufficiently large number of people to
form the nucleus for the expression of a specific language, and, in so
doing, constituting such people a nation.

I have already stated that it is _motion_ in the first instance which
superinduces a specific mode of breathing and consequent expression. It
is to motion, then, that we must ascribe the first impulse. Such motion
may have been active as to defense against enemies, wild beasts, or
the elements; or it may have been passive, consisting of the continuous
noise produced by the motion of the sea, tempests, or thunder-storms,
making a great and lasting impression. Then, again, the influence may
have been of a peaceful, balmy, beneficial nature, as with people
living in security, in a mild climate and on fertile lands. The
stronger the expression of these movements, the stronger the impression
they made and the more powerful the expression of the language; the
softer and more harmonious their expression, the softer and the more
rhythmical the expression of the language. These influences made their
first impression by superinducing a mode of breathing in conformity

Thus sounds giving expression to pain, perhaps, in the first instance,
or to sorrow, joy, surprise, etc., were made in conformity with
this, their specific mode of breathing. These outcries, consisting
of syllables, grew into words and sentences, which, being uttered in
conformity and sympathy with their special mode of breathing, created
a specific idiomatic expression. The same process, from its first
inauguration, and with but slight alterations, has been practised and
persisted in by the same people from the beginning to the present
time. With the English people, as already mentioned, no migration, no
invasion, no conqueror, no matter how powerful, has been able to swerve
it from its path. The _most_ these invaders could do was to graft
some of the expressions in which _their_ ideas were clad, some words,
on to this aboriginal stem. This stem was so strong in its primeval
conception that it could bear all these exotic graftings without losing
its character, absorbing all, welcoming all beneath the widespread
roof and homestead of its branches. It proved its superiority over the
idiomatic expression of these foreign tongues by its survival, as the

[Before proceeding further, I want to remark: these studies having been
made from an Anglo-Saxon point of view, it is just possible that a
preponderance of observations may have been made on that side; while,
if they had been made from a German standpoint, the preponderance most
likely would be on that side. This, no doubt, will be the case should I
at any future period be able to write all this, as I intend to, in the
German language.]

What is this original sap in the English, and what is it in the German

The aborigines of the British Isles, living apart from their
continental brethren, became possessed of an idiom different and
apart from any other. It was the idiom of the _sea_, by which they
were surrounded; the motion and commotion of the waves, the surf, the
incoming and outgoing tides, their undertow and overflow; the waves
advancing toward the shore, their breaking against it, and their final
retreat from the same.

The English language is a raft living upon the ocean. You can _hear_
the waters rushing through it and on to the shore and back again. You
can feel the waves rising up to gigantic heights, and then falling
to and below the level of the sea. You can feel the undertow in its
reserve force, quiet and subdued like the lull before the storm, yet
capable of almost any demonstration. You can feel all this in the
strength and vigor of its diction as expressed in its prose and poetry.
This is not a mere poetical conception, but a truth capable of actual,
practical demonstration.

While reading poetry or prose, or while singing, fancy seeing in your
mind's eye the ocean with its waters in commotion, either the open sea
or the surf near the shore, and you will _feel every word you utter
mingle with its waves. These pictures will never disturb your fancy,
but will associate with it in perfect harmony._ Now substitute for the
picture of the ocean and its tumult some rural picture, as of a field
of grain or the branches of trees tossed by the wind, or the flow of a
river, or even that of the sea itself when perfectly calm. Keep such
picture before you exactly as you did that of the sea in commotion.
While reading, speaking, or singing English you will not be able to
_hold_ such picture; _it will soon disturb you, and to such an extent
that you must cease thinking of it, or be obliged to stop your reading,
singing, etc._

The impression made by the ocean, in fact, is so great that it
dominates the _thought_ and the entire being of English-speaking
people. This is the case to such an extent that if you continue to
persistently _think_ of any other image than the ocean, even without
uttering any sound whatever, it will so greatly perturb you that you
will be unable to continue thinking at all. You may, on the other hand,
continue to think for an indefinite period of the image of the ocean
without experiencing any disturbance whatever.

While the basic element of the English language is closely affiliated
with the ocean, that of the _German language_ is affiliated with the
_woods, and the blowing of the winds_. In their habitation in the
forest, the wind made so deep an impression on the primeval inhabitants
of Germany that you can feel its _soughing pervade all German diction_.

If you are a German keep the picture of the woods before you and the
soughing of the wind through the tree-tops, and it will harmonize with
German thought and diction. Substitute a picture of the ocean for it,
or almost any other picture, and you will not be able to vocally utter
German thought, nor will you be able to continue thinking in the German
language at all.

In place of conjuring up these pictures in your mind's eye you can
substitute _real_ pictures representing these scenes, and while
contemplating them the effect will be the same.

After pursuing the picture of the ocean for a while, say: "English;"
after pursuing that of the woods, say: "Deutsch;" either will come
quite naturally, but you cannot reverse them. If you attempt it, these
words will not be forthcoming.

While with English diction there is _a pause and then an emphasis_ as
of the waves coming on and then breaking against the shore, so, with
German diction, there is an _emphasis and then a pause_, as of the
blowing of the wind succeeded by a calm. These, in a word, are the
characteristic elements in the idiomatic expressions of these peoples;
English idiomatic expression being _low succeeded by loud_; German,
_loud succeeded by low_.

The influence of the ocean with its continuous uproar formulated the
speech and character of the English nation into one of strength and
reality, with its centre of gravity in the abdomen. The peaceful
influence of their habitation in the woods, together with the
impression made by the wind, the singing of birds, etc., formulated the
speech and character of the German nation into one more of ideality,
with its centre of gravity in the thorax.

The fondness of the English for the sea, their supremacy thereon, etc.,
need not be amplified upon:

    "Wherever billows foam
    The Briton fights at home,
    His hearth is built of water."

The fondness of the Germans for the woods is equally noted: Der
"dunkle," "zauberische," "geheimnissvolle," "heilige"--Wald (The
"darkly deep," "magical," "mysterious," and "sacred" woods) are but
common expressions.

There is not a word in the English language of the same significance
as that of "Der Wald." It embraces many ideas, of which the words
"the woods" and "the forest" are not expressive. These, in a literal
translation, find expression in the words "Das Gehoelz" and "Der
Forst," which are of a more realistic nature.

The English language, on the other hand, is full of expressions
applying to nautical matters and to the sea, for which there are no
adequate expressions in the German language.

The fondness of the present Emperor of Germany for the sea must be
attributed to the English blood flowing in his veins. While it is his
desire to create a powerful navy, the people of Germany are indifferent
to, and obstruct rather than assist, the accomplishment of this desire.

Idiomatic expression, the soul of language, has its incipiency in the
_soul_ of a people, and may pervade it for centuries before the _body_
of the language, the _words_ in which its thoughts are clad, makes its
appearance. It must have taken many centuries more before these words
grouped themselves into sentences and assumed the shape of speech. The
words may change, but the idiomatic expression will always remain the

So, also, must the soul of man have had existence for an indefinite
period of time before a body was formulated to clothe it in. The
spiritual cell, if I may be permitted to use such an expression, must
have existed before the material; or, in other words, the spiritual
cell must have made its appearance long before the material cell
_commenced_ to make its appearance.


It is a common saying that there is a close relationship existing
between the German and English nations. There is no greater fallacy
than this. I contend that this relationship is of a very distant
order, consisting, as it does, merely in words, or, as I have said,
garments loosely flung around the sturdy, strong, and unalterable stem
of English idiomatic expression. In every other respect there is a
great dissimilarity and antagonism even, existing between these two
peoples. If there is any analogy existing between them at all, it is
one of opposition; one that is based on the idea that extremes meet
(_les extrêmes se touchent_), their poles being diametrically opposed
to each other.

There is no more relationship existing between (Anglo-Saxon) German and
English than there is between (Norman) French and English; the German,
French, and English languages each possessing their own especial and
unalterable idiomatic expressions. Whatever foreign words either of
them adopt must be subjected to their idiom, or keep floating along as
best they may in their original character.

The entire aspect of these three nations, the French, English, and
German, points to the fact that there must be a radical difference
in their vital mode of existence. Just what this vital mode consists
in, in respect to the two latter nations, I expect to still further
establish in a future publication. Both languages traverse nearly the
entire range of the vital organs in opposite directions. Hence the
strength and also the weaknesses of these languages, as compared with
other languages which, extending from side to side, have a smaller
compass but a comparatively purer range of sounds. Regarding other
nations and their languages, I trust others, thoroughly familiar with
the same, by applying to their investigations similar principles, will
establish similar facts.

Owing to its centrifugal tendency, it is necessary for English vocal
utterance to open the mouth much wider than it is for German. Let a
German open his mouth no farther for the enunciation of English than he
is in the habit of opening it while speaking his own language, and he
will not be able to utter a single sound. The same result will obtain
when an Anglo-Saxon attempts to speak German on the same basis that he
is in the habit of speaking his own language. Owing to the centripetal
tendency of the German language, the mouth in speaking German is but
slightly extended. That this respective widening and narrowing of,
not only the mouth but of every other channel employed in bringing
about vocal utterance, must tend to exercise a marked influence on
Anglo-Saxon and German features will be obvious. The consequence is
that the mouth of English-speaking persons in thus being extended has
a broad yet narrow appearance, with rather thin and compressed lips,
while the mouth of Germans in thus being contracted is comparatively
smaller, with full and ripe lips. This feature is in conformity with
all other features which, with Anglo-Saxons, are elongated, with
Germans contracted.

Experiments regarding centrifugal and centripetal action can be made
to good advantage by resting your head sideways on a pillow. In this
position during vocal utterance you can _feel_ these actions, and,
feeling them, "_measure_" them. This mode of proceeding can be
successfully adopted in many other experiments connected with these
studies. I must warn the reader, however, again and again, that all
this has reference only to languages spoken idiomatically correct. It
has no reference whatever to foreign languages spoken in the usual
mechanical manner.


I will now show that motion is the first impulse and primary condition
of speech. I will give but a few examples at present, but expect
to prove most exhaustively later on that motion _must_ precede, or
_apparently at least_, accompany vocal sounds _always_.

While standing up, straight, throw out your arms horizontally, then
speak English. You will have no difficulty, but you will not be able
to speak German so easily. Next, stand as before, and again throw out
your arms horizontally, then drop them, letting them hang down close
to your body. After doing so you will have no difficulty in speaking
German, but you will not be able to speak English so readily. In
throwing out your arms in the first instance, your mouth will open,
and you will _close_ it in speaking English. In letting them drop, in
the second instance, your mouth will close, and you will _open_ it in
speaking German. Now, stand on the tips of your toes, and you will have
no difficulty in speaking English, but you will not be able to speak
German with ease. Then rest the weight of your body on your heels,
and you will have no trouble in speaking German, but you cannot speak
English with ease. In standing on the toes the body is extended by
centrifugal, in standing on the heels it is contracted by centripetal
action. Next, extend your neck, and you will have less trouble in
speaking English than in speaking German; then lower your neck, and
you will find no trouble in speaking German, but you will in speaking
English. These experiments might be amplified manifold, but these must
suffice for the present.

The same features of the opening and closing of the mouth in conformity
with the position you assume, will obtain in all these instances
the same as at first mentioned. It will scarcely be necessary for
me to repeat that all this shows that the motion for English speech
is centrifugal, for German centripetal. Nor will it be necessary to
call attention to the fact that all this tends towards giving Germans
a condensed and broad, Anglo-Saxons a lengthy and narrow bodily

It is, however, a noteworthy fact that with Germans the nearer you
approach the sea, the more centrifugal becomes their action and
personal appearance. The people of Northern Germany, therefore, though
radically differing from them in most other respects, partake more of
the general bodily features of Anglo-Saxon nations than those of the
South of Germany, who are positively opposed to them.

Upon having ascertained the correctness of these statements by actual
experiment, I want to ask the reader how he expects to reconcile these
facts with the universally adopted theory that the larynx is the
sole instrument productive of vocal utterance. An Anglo-Saxon, when
stretching out his arms horizontally, can readily speak English, while
a German in the same position cannot utter a sound of _his_ language
without difficulty. If the larynx in the case of an Anglo-Saxon, under
these circumstances, produces vocal utterance, why is it not so easy
with a German?

My explanation is this:

By extending your limbs, in stretching out your arms, or standing
on your toes, the centrifugal action is instrumental in parting the
jaws and giving the tongue an upward tendency. In so doing, the
œsophagus and replica obtain ascendancy over the trachea and the
larynx. The abdomen (the seat of gravitation for English speech)
and its tributaries thus obtain the mastery over the thorax and its
tributaries. The former being the main vehicle for English speech,
such speech can be produced without molestation. These facts, while
favorable to the production of English vocal utterance, obstruct and
hinder German vocal utterance.

In lowering the arms or standing on one's heels, thus substituting
centripetal for centrifugal action, the jaws close, the tongue assumes
a downward tendency. The trachea and the larynx, as well as the
thorax (the seat of gravitation for German vocal utterance), obtain
the preponderance, and German may be freely spoken, while English is

In _raising_ the tongue, a free passage to the œsophagus is obtained,
while that to the trachea is obstructed. In _lowering_ the tongue, a
free passage to the trachea is obtained, while that to the œsophagus
becomes obstructed. It is necessary, however, to understand that,
while English speech is centrifugal and German centripetal, these are
_tendencies_ only and not permanent _conditions_; centrifugal and
centripetal action constantly interchanging and modifying one another.
An uninterrupted tendency in one and the same direction, either
centripetally or centrifugally, would soon come to an end and produce
stagnation, inertia, death. There is no action without a counteraction.
Hence, ingoing vocal sounds are counterbalanced by outgoing; the
same as ingoing thoughts or thoughts produced by external vision are
counterbalanced by outgoing, or thoughts produced by internal vision,

In addition to the parts mentioned, there are many other parts of
the body which, subjected to centrifugal or centripetal action, will
produce results of the same order as those already mentioned. In
stretching out your legs (while in a sitting position), you will find
speaking German to be difficult; upon drawing them up, you will have
trouble with English. The same results may be obtained, in connection
with the toes and fingers, in a number of different ways. From all
this, it will be readily seen that all parts of the body are closely
related to each other, the tendency of the muscles in one prominent
part producing the same tendency in all the rest.

There is one thing which must be mentioned, however. To obtain
centrifugal action, it is necessary to _stretch_ the part under
consideration; the mere extension of a part, without stretching it,
will be fruitless of results in either one direction or another;
so will the mere contraction of any part be fruitless of results,
unless such contraction is complete. You can let your arms hang down
alongside of your body and yet speak English easily; and you can hold
them out horizontally, and yet speak German easily. In either case the
contraction and expansion must be _thorough_ to produce results either
centripetally or centrifugally.

_All_ persons make similar motions to those mentioned with every sound
they utter, though these motions do not appear on the surface; in fact,
they could not speak if they did not make them.

I have already mentioned, but want to repeat, that centrifugal action
is the cause of the elongated faces, and especially of the elongation
of the lower jaw of English-speaking persons. It is also the cause of
their semi-parted lips while in repose, showing their teeth, and a
full exhibition thereof while speaking; a fact which has caused much
merriment to continental nations, and has given rise to an endless
number of caricatures of "milord" and "milady" on their travels, etc.
It is also the cause of the perfection of dentistry in this country
and in England, where the teeth are always more or less on exhibition.
In other countries, where they are hidden behind the curtains of the
lips, which are usually closed, except while speaking or laughing, this
necessity does not arise to nearly the same extent. To the centrifugal
force there is also due much of the innate charm and beauty of
English-speaking women.

From all this one great lesson may be learned: no matter by what
divergent means nature may work its ends, similar results are
obtained, though often arrived at by opposite means and from opposite
directions. Thus life ever presents to us new forms and features, and
ever infuses new interest into what otherwise might become unbearable
in its monotony. A better insight into these facts ought to make
us feel more lenient towards what appear to us as other people's
"idiosyncrasies." It should also have a tendency to prevent us from
attempting to enforce to their full extent laws made in conformity with
our own desires and inclinations but in direct opposition to those of
others (foreigners living among us), whose character and disposition
lead them in diametrically opposite directions.

Unless otherwise mentioned, I wish the reader to remember that I am
always speaking not only from the standpoint of an American, but _as_
an American. The fact of my long residence in this country, where I
have spent the best part of my life, in itself would not entitle me to
do this, having shown, as I have endeavored to do, that this is not
sufficient to change a person from one nationality into another. During
my earnest endeavor at fathoming these differences, however, I have
been led into assuming the forms which distinguish the Anglo-Saxon from
the German. Unless I am with Germans and speak the German language, in
my thoughts and otherwise I lead the life of an American.

That my English speech, however (though my friends in their indulgence
would lead me to believe otherwise), is not as perfect as it might be,
is largely due to the fact of my constantly having recourse to the
German language, and that I am thus as constantly led back into these
other forms of existence which cannot be indulged in without some
detriment and abstraction from either the one or the other. There was
a time, in fact, when the transformation I have spoken of was taking
place (the disturbance being so great) that I could not speak well
either the one language or the other.

I am well convinced, on the other hand, that through perseverance
_perfection_ in the utterance of both of these languages, for speech
as well as for song, and possibly of some other languages besides, may
be attained in the course of time; nature being so pliable that, when
the required actions are once _fully_ understood and complied with, a
perfect change may be made instantly in passing from one language on
to another. Such changes, in fact, are naturally made by persons who,
in their infancy, have been educated in and taught to speak several
languages at one and the same time; the material during infancy
being so pliable that it can be readily formed into any shape and
transformed into any other. All of the preceding also shows that, for
every separate idiom, the _entire_ instrument must be "tuned" for its
production in a given order, and that only when so tuned can such idiom
be produced in its entire purity. It also shows that, unless so tuned,
the vocal cords of the larynx and replica cease to be instrumental in
the production of sound.

An instrument tuned for the production of the English language,
consequently, cannot produce German sounds, nor can it produce Romanic,
Slavonic, or the sounds of any other language. Sounds, _apparently_
the same, of either the singing or speaking voice of various languages
are, therefore, _not_ the same and are certainly not produced in the
same manner. For a German, consequently, or an Italian to attempt to
teach an English-speaking person the art of singing is an anomaly. A
foreigner might, with the same show of reason, attempt to teach persons
of another nationality the correct pronunciation of their own language.
It would be equally false, of course, for an English-speaking person to
attempt to teach a German, Italian, etc., the art of singing, unless he
had first mastered his pupil's idiomatic expression, or the pupil had
mastered that of his teacher.

Many persons are under the erroneous impression that song and speech
are performances separate and apart from each other, while they are in
reality of precisely the same, though inverse, order. They are of the
same order, for instance, as the back and palm of the hand: the former
representing speech, the latter song; the external and the internal, or
the anterior and the posterior. As the back of the hand, such must and
will be its palm; or, as its palm, such must and will be its back.

Conversing with a teacher some time since, she scorned such
propositions, saying a person's language had nothing to do with his or
her song; the mode of production of the latter being the _same_ with
ALL nationalities; besides, she had studied the larynx, and knew all
about it. This, of course, settled it, and I had not anything further
to say.


Anglo-Saxons inspire first into the thorax and then into the abdomen.
Germans inspire first into the abdomen and then into the thorax. The
former expire first from the abdomen and then from the thorax; the
latter expire first from the abdomen and then from the thorax. This,
however, gives but a partial account of the process of breathing, and I
must postpone a more explicit one to a later period.

To prove the correctness of the above assertion, press your hand
against the left side of your thorax anteriorly, and you will find
it difficult to inhale. If you press your hand against the right
side of your thorax, on the other hand, you will have no difficulty
in inhaling. Next, press your hand against the right side of your
abdomen, and you will not be able to exhale; but if you press your hand
against its left side, you will experience no trouble in exhaling. In
pressing your hands one against the left side of the breast and the
other against the right side of the abdomen, you will have trouble in

Pressures produced in the precisely _opposite_ manner in every respect,
on the part of a German-speaking person, will produce effects of
precisely the _same_ nature. A German, in pressing the right side of
his abdomen, will not be able to inspire freely, but pressing its left
side will not hinder him from doing so. Pressing the left side of his
thorax will impede his expiration, while the pressing of its right
side will not prevent him from doing so. These results will become
more obvious when these pressures are continued for some time. All
the pressures mentioned are to be applied _anteriorly_. Pressures of
the same nature applied _posteriorly_ produce opposite results with
Anglo-Saxons as well as Germans.

Similar results may be obtained by producing pressures on the median
line of either thorax or abdomen, front as well as back. Such will also
be the case when pressures are produced on either side from the armpits
downward or from the hips upward. More satisfactory results, however,
than those obtained through mechanical pressure can be obtained by
making the respective parts rigid. It will scarcely be necessary for me
to mention all these various causes and consequent results in detail,
as any one interested in these matters can work them out for himself
from that which I have said.


The thorax is productive of the falling, the abdomen of the rising
voice, the former being the representative of the _impression_ for
sounds, the latter of their expression.

_An Anglo-Saxon's voice, inspiring, as he does, into the thorax, and
expiring from the abdomen, will first fall and then rise. A German's
voice, on the contrary, inspiring, as he does, into the abdomen, and
expiring from the thorax, will first rise and then fall._

This is the fundamental cause of the difference between the idiomatic
expression of these two peoples, and primarily also of the difference
existing between their national traits physically as well as mentally.

Every original word in either of these languages will illustrate these

   ´ `    ´  `     ´ `      ´  `
  Vater, Mutter, Bruder, Schwester.

Take the same words in English, and the accent will be reversed:

   `  ´    `  ´     `  ´     ` ´
  Father, Mother, Brother, Sister

When these and similar words were adopted into the English language,
it was done at the expense of their original idiomatic expression.
I am speaking of the music, the rise and fall, the rhythm pervading
a language, not of time or measure, nor of the intonation, nor of

I make four distinctions, and expect to prove that they are the basis
of every artistic expression of either speech or song. First, measure
or time. Second, the rise and fall of the voice, equal to its rhythm.
Third, intonation, which pertains to words in accordance with their
meaning. Fourth, emphasis, which has reference to the feelings.

That the human voice is capable of at one and the same time expressing
four moods so different from each other, shows that there are
various factors (all of a different nature) simultaneously at work
producing these different results. To correctly indicate these four
characteristics, it would be necessary to mark each syllable in a
fourfold manner. I shall confine myself to the rhythm and the metre,
and shall mark the former above the line by using the signs for accent
(´`), and the latter below the line by using those for metre (¯˘).

Right here is the main stumbling-block with persons of either
nationality in speaking the language of the other. They will in
so doing invariably retain the idiomatic expression of their own

The _proper_ way to illustrate the rhythm would be as follows:

   ´`´`   ´` ´`   ´`
  Vater, Mutter, gut.

   `´ `´   `´ `´   `´
  Father, Mother, good.

There is always a rise of the voice before its fall in German, and a
fall before its rise in English _for each and every syllable_. When
a language is well spoken, this complete intonation is always heard.
If this needs illustration, which it should not, being so obvious,
the poetry of both peoples offers proofs in great abundance. It is a
notable fact that, with German verse, the voice for the end syllable
always sinks, with English it rises; the former is generally short,
the latter long; but even where the word ends with a long syllable in
German the voice falls at the end, and where one ends with a short
syllable in English the voice rises at the end.

To anxiously count every syllable in poetry is contrary to the spirit
of a language. There are slight touches here and there which simply
serve as connecting links, and which, in marking the rhythmic flow of
sounds, should not be included as belonging to the metre. Most of these
are prefixes or affixes, pauses for repose or relaxation, consisting
in scarcely noticeable inspirations or expirations, which are necessary
to strengthen the voice for the actual metre. The various intonations
are generally expressed by the use of the signs for long and short
only. As the latter, properly speaking, only represent time or measure,
the voice is left to express as best it may and without any guidance
whatsoever every other factor composing a language. All I want to do
now is to show by the signs for the accent the difference between the
English and German rhythmic movement:

     ´   `   ´   `  ´  `    ´ `
    Auf der duftverlornen Grenze
     ¯   ˘   ¯   ˘  ¯  ˘    ¯ ˘

     ´ `   ´ `   ´  `  ´ `
    Jener Berge tanzen hold
     ¯ ˘   ¯  ˘  ¯  ˘   ¯

    ´  `  ´  `  ´  `  ´  `
    Abendwolken ihre Taenze
     ¯ ˘  ¯  ˘  ¯  ˘  ¯  ˘

      ´     `   ´     `    ´   ` ´  `
    Leicht geschuerzt im Strahlengold.
      ¯     ˘   ¯     ˘    ¯  ˘   ¯


        ´  `   ´`  ´`  ´ `   ´ `  ´ `
    Auf ihrem Grab da steht eine Linde
         ¯ ˘   ¯   ˘   ¯ ˘  ¯ ˘  ¯  ˘

           ´  `  ´ `  ´ `   ´`  ´ `  ´ `
    Drin pfeifen die Voegel im Abendwinde;
          ¯   ˘   ˘   ¯  ˘  ˘  ¯ ˘  ¯  ˘

         ´ `  ´ `  ´ `  ´`  ´`  ´ ` ´`   ´   `
    Die Winde die wehen so lind und so schaurig,
         ¯ ˘   ˘   ¯ ˘  ˘   ¯    ˘  ˘    ¯  ˘

         ´  `  ´ `  ´  `  ´`  ´ `  ´ ` ´`   ´ `
    Die Voegel die singen so suess und so traurig.
         ¯  ˘   ˘   ¯  ˘  ˘   ¯     ˘  ˘   ¯   ˘


The beginning of every line in this verse might remain unmarked as not
belonging to the rhythmic expression proper, and being expressive
mainly of an inspiration preceding the expiration which it foreshadows.
The beauty of Heine's verse is largely due to the fact that he does
not anxiously count time, but lets his voice rise and fall where it is
most effective. It will be noticed that there is a greater movement, as
expressed by the signs of the rhythm, in Heine's verse than there is in
Lenau's, hence the inexpressible charm of his diction. Here is another
great poet, or poetess rather, the greatest Germany has produced, also
fearless of prescribed forms, but full of charm and power:

         ´ `    ´`   ´ `    ´`  ´`  ´`
    O schaurig ists uebers Moor zu gehn,
          ¯ ˘   ˘    ¯  ˘   ¯    ˘  ¯

              ´ `    ´`  ´  `  ´ `
    Wenn es wimmelt vom Haiderauche,
              ¯  ˘   ˘    ¯ ˘  ¯  ˘

          ´`  ´`  ´`   ´`   ´ `    ´ `
    Sich wie Phantome die Duenste drehn
          ¯   ˘   ¯ ˘  ˘   ¯   ˘   ¯

             ´ `   ´  `   ´`   ´   `
    Und die Ranke haekelt am Strauche.
             ¯ ˘   ¯   ˘   ˘  ¯    ˘


In these last two citations, the dactylus (¯ ˘ ˘) is the prevailing
measure, which but strengthens my assertion that in German diction
there is a fall after a rise; the former being here more distinctly
expressed than in the simple trochaic measure. The fall, the
relaxation, being greater, the rise, the vigor in the expression,
thereby gains additional strength. What is the consequence of this
falling off or gliding down in German diction so well expressed in

    ´   `    ´  `   ´ `   ´  `
  "Auf der duftverlornen Grenze"?

It is not a positive line of demarcation, but one which is lost, as it
were, "in the soft ether of the evening sky."

Hence the high tide succeeded by the low, the aspiration followed by
resignation, the night after the day, death after life, repose after
the strife--all this expresses the genius of the German language; and
is also expressive of German life and character--its dreaminess, its
longing, its desire for the ideal, never to be attained; the abstract,
the abstruse; its yearning, its altruism, its transcendentalism, its
_Weltschmerz_ (the sadness pervading all nature). It is also expressive
of its _Begeisterung_ (an enthusiasm which upon the slightest
provocation takes a man almost off his feet). All these are traits of
the German national character.

There is no spiritual bond among all these millions that could possibly
produce such sentiments and feelings as its result, differing, as they
do, from the feelings of any other nation or people, but that of a
language common to all.

To prove that the trochaic measure is the one ordained by nature for
German expression, it is but necessary to glance at the characteristic
words of the preceding verses:

    ´ `     ´ `    ´ `    ´ `    ´  `    ´  `   ´  `
  Wimmelt, Haide, gehen, wehen, drehen, Ranke, haekelt,

    ´ `    ´ `    ´ `    ´ `    ´  `    ´  `
  Grenze, jener, Berge, Abend, Wolken, Taenze,

    ´   `    ´ `   ´ `    ´ `     ´  `    ´  `    ´ `
  strahlen, ihren, eine, Linde, pfeifen, Voegel, Winde,

     ´ `      ´ `     ´ `
  schaurig, singen, traurig.

The same rhythm, though not so obviously expressed, obtains with the
words of one syllable:

  ´`    ´`   ´`     ´`    ´  `   ´`   ´`
  Auf, der, Duft, hold, leicht, im, Gold,

  ´`     ´ `    ´`    ´ `    ´ `      ´`
  Grab, steht, lind, suess, ueber's, Moor.

Now compare with this the strength and vigor of English diction, which
runs in the precisely opposite direction:

     `    ´  `   ´   `    ´    `   ´
    The stag at eve had drunk his fill,
     ˘   ¯   ˘   ¯   ˘    ¯    ˘   ¯

      ` ´   ` ´   `   ´   `   ´ `    ´
    Where danced the moon on Monan's rill;
      ˘    ¯  ˘   ˘   ¯   ˘   ¯  ˘    ¯

    `´   `´   `   ´  ` ´   ` ´  `   ´
    And deep his midnight lair had made,
    ˘    ¯    ˘   ¯   ˘    ¯    ˘   ¯

     `   ´    `  ´   `    ` ´    ` ´
    In lone Glenartney's hazel shade.
    ˘   ¯    ˘  ¯   ˘     ¯ ˘    ¯


      `  ´  `   ´     `   ´   `´  `´
    The day is done, and the darkness
    ˘    ¯  ˘   ¯     ˘   ˘   ¯   ˘

       `´    ` ´  `   ` ´  `   ` ´
      Falls from the wings of night,
       ˘     ¯    ˘   ¯    ˘   ¯

    `´ `  ´   `   `  ´  `  ` ´ ` ´
    As a feather is wafted downward
    ˘  ˘  ¯   ˘  ˘   ¯  ˘   ¯  ˘

       `´  `   `´    `  ´    ` ´
      From an eagle in his flight.
        ˘  ˘   ¯    ˘   ˘    ¯


    `  ` ´  `   `´   `´   `´   `  `´
    Oh east is east, and west is west,
    ˘   ¯   ˘   ¯     ˘   ¯   ˘   ¯

       `   ´ `   `   ´   `     ´
      And never the two shall meet,
       ˘   ¯  ˘  ˘   ¯    ˘    ¯

     `    ´     `   ´    `    ´  ` ´
    Till earth and sky stand presently,
     ˘    ¯     ˘   ¯    ˘    ¯  ˘  ¯

      `   `´    ` ´   ` ´  `    ´
      At God's great judgment seat.
      ˘   ¯      ˘     ¯  ˘    ¯
     `    ´    `  ´   `  ` ´   `   ´
    But there is neither east nor west,
     ˘    ¯   ˘   ¯   ˘   ¯    ˘   ¯

       `´ `    `    ´     `    ´
      Border, nor breed, nor birth,
       ¯  ˘    ˘    ¯     ˘   ¯

      `   ´     `´   `´   `    ´    `   ´
    When two strong men stand face to face,
      ˘   ¯     ˘    ¯    ˘    ¯    ˘   ¯

        `      `   ´     `    `  ´   `    `  ´
      Though they come from the ends of the earth.
        ˘     ˘    ¯    ˘    ˘   ¯   ˘   ˘   ¯


It is either the iambic (˘¯) or the anapest (˘˘¯). Of course, these
vary to some extent in conformity with the reader's intonation, but the
spirit of the language is always from weakness to strength, in place of
from strength to weakness, as with the German. It is always the waves
approaching the shore and then _breaking_ against it, as against the
wind _coming up suddenly_ and then dying away. This is the reason why
a serenade or lullaby in English can never be rendered with the same
effect as in German, the English voice rising at the end instead of

Wherever a verse commences with a stress, it must be considered that
a fall of the voice or an inspiration has preceded it; this, though
unaccompanied by sound, being really the case. I have thus marked the
beginning of Longfellow's beautiful lines:

   ` ´     `´     ` ´

Mr. Lunn, in his _Philosophy of Voice_, has the following:

"How many Englishmen _dare_ utter loudly a word beginning with a
vowel? If attempted, either it would not be done, or, in spite of the
speaker, owing to the weakness of the muscles which draw the cords
together [_sic_], an aspirate would precede the vowel."

This is right, as far as his observation is concerned, but he does
not seem to know that this very weakness he complains of is really
the strength of the English language, the lull before the storm, the
concentration before the explosion; and that "thus the idiosyncrasy
of our people's speech" is _not_ "deadness, weakness, and general
feebleness," but, on the contrary, a strength and a virility not
surpassed by any other tongue. This finds illustration in Kipling's

  `´  `´  `´  `´
  Oh east is east, etc.

It is but necessary to comprehend the laws which underlie this apparent
weakness to turn it to its best account, and to obtain from it the
highest results, both for speech and song. As for the "weakness of the
muscles which draw the cords together," it will scarcely be necessary
for me to make a specific refutation; the premises upon which such
assumption is founded being quite untenable, there being quite as much
vigor in the _muscles_ and _cords_ of an Anglo-Saxon as in those of any
other nation. Nor, I suppose, will it be necessary to strengthen my
assertions by once more quoting the separate words and thus pointing
out the iambic, the rise after the fall (˘¯), or the anapest (˘˘¯), the
twofold repose and gathering of strength for the final emphasis.

The English language in its Saxon words mainly consists of
monosyllables. These, however, as stated, must be looked upon as words
of two syllables, a suppressed intonation always preceding their vowel
sounds. The majority of such words, as a matter of fact, originally
consisted of two syllables, of which the last was dropped when they
were adopted by the English. This last syllable, representing the fall
of the voice thus disappearing, left the first, which represented
its rise, standing unsupported by itself. As the rise of the voice,
however, cannot be expressed without the accompaniment of its fall, the
latter always _tacitly_ accompanies the same, and is expressed in an
undertone, _preceding_ the rise.

Almost every verb of this class will give evidence of this fact:

   ´ `    ´   ´ `    ´    ´  `    ´
  Gehen--go, sehen--see, hoeren--hear,

     ´  `     ´     ´  `    ´     ´  `     ´
  sprechen--speak, kochen--cook, tanzen--dance,

   ´  `    ´
  fallen--fall, etc.

Hence, in conformity with the above, these words in the English
language should be properly marked thus:

  `´   `´   `´     `´    `´     `´
  Go, see, hear, speak, cook, dance, etc.

which gives the real intonation thereof.

This applies to all words commencing with a vowel, and explains what
Mr. Lunn has designated as a "weakness of the English language":

   `´   `´  `´  `´    `´     `´   `´
  Art, arm, or, all, eagle, each, old, etc.

Without this half-suppressed fall of the voice, there would be no
beauty, no charm, no soul in the English language; in fact, it could
not exist. Words of two syllables, however, always have the fall of the
voice on the first, its rise on the second, syllable, even where the
preponderance of _time_ belongs to the first syllable, as in the words

   `  ´    ` ´
  Danced, hazel, etc.
   ¯ ˘     ¯ ˘

The reader will find these statements sustained by almost every word he
may examine into, which will show that the characteristic expression
of English diction is that of the iambic measure, which passes from
weakness to strength; while that of German diction, as already stated,
is that of the trochaic measure, which passes from strength to weakness.

Having shown that German _sentiment_ is in accord with the idiomatic
expression of the German language, I will now show that _English_
sentiment also conforms to _its_ idiomatic expression. I must beg
the reader, however, not to be over-critical. I am not attempting to
furnish comparative sketches of the national character of these peoples
in a literary sense, but am entering into these matters for the sole
purpose of sustaining the results of my physiological investigations.
Nor should these attempts be applied to individual cases, there being
exceptions to all rules, but to the national character _in general_.
If a person in making investigations of this kind had to constantly
fear that he might be treading on some one's sensitive toes, he could
never make any headway at all. I am, in fact, perfectly willing to
apologize beforehand for any such mishap possibly taking place, as I
wish to be perfectly impartial and without bias. I have said this much
partly for the reason also that in consequence of some remark, on one
occasion, made in my former publication in favor of the English _vs._
the Germans, one critic honored me with the epithet "renegade."

The rising voice succeeding the falling is not a soft and gradual
receding, but, on the contrary, it is more like an explosion, a
trumpet-blast; the inspiration which had been "stored" being suddenly
released. There is no such "storing" in connection with German
diction; inspiration and expiration succeeding each other on the
spot. With English diction this change may be compared to the break
of day after the night; the fray after the repose; resurrection after
death; a conflagration and a rebuilding at once on the spot, not
only individually, but by an entire community (Boston and Chicago);
an outburst after due deliberation; no sentimentality, but a firm
resolve for the right; patient submission to a point, then a strike
for liberty; the slow accumulation of a fortune and the spontaneous
spending thereof; a hot political campaign and a victory or defeat;
in either case acquiescence; no vain mourning after the fact; a
butterfly of wealth, idleness, and fashion, then perhaps ruin; yet not
despair, but a brave conformity to altered circumstances; an energy in
the pursuit of business or of war which does not flag until utterly
exhausted or success is achieved and a victory is won. All this is due
to the reserve force in the character of English-speaking people,
which comes to their rescue when circumstances demand it. A world
positive and direct, full of energy, restlessness, and activity. A
world of, and for, _this_ world; whose world to come, even, must have a
positive and well-defined character and surroundings:

    "Where the walls are made of jasper and the streets are paved
        with gold."

To what is all this due but to this _bond of language_ uniting these
millions, and embracing every foreign element, in its children at
least? The theme is inexhaustible, but I am limited as to time; yet
additional remarks on the same subject will be forthcoming during the
further pursuance of these studies.

For song, it appears to me, the words, besides being marked by notes,
should also be marked as to rhythm, as this would assist singers in
giving them the proper intonation; notes indicating metre, but not

Metre and rhythm are produced by two distinctly different processes;
metre, or time, being the outcome of a mode of breathing subject to the
will, while rhythm is the outcome of an involuntary mode of breathing
for a characteristic quality inherent in a nation's language as its
idiomatic expression.

Ordinarily, both metre and rhythm are expressed by the same signs (˘¯);
this is very misleading.

To express time, or metre, I use the signs for short and long (˘¯). To
express rhythm, or the fall and rise of the voice, I use the signs for
what is usually called the accent (´`). If we were to _meas__ure_ the
exact time, however, consumed in the utterance of syllables, we would
find that the falling voice, which is the product of inspiration and
belongs to the thorax, requires more time than the rising voice, which
is the product of expiration and belongs to the abdomen.

In marking verse, however, the sign for long (¯) generally accompanies
the short syllable of the rising, and the sign for short (˘) the, as a
matter of fact, long syllable of the falling voice. It takes longer to
fill a bottle than to pour out its contents; to prepare a dish than to
eat it; to walk upstairs than to jump from a window. It takes longer to
_prepare_ for an utterance than to utter it. It takes longer to inspire
than to expire.

In view of the vast foreign element constituting a part of this nation,
it would be a matter of interest to know at what period the foreigner
ceases to exist as such and the "American" begins; or, in other words,
to understand when the evolution takes place which transforms the
foreigner into the American. From my point of view it is, above all,
a question of language. The political aspect of the case is scarcely
to be considered. An unnaturalized Englishman, consequently, after
thoroughly "Americanizing" his language, becomes more of an American
(no matter whether he himself thinks so or not) than an Irishman who,
though naturalized, never ceases to use his native brogue.

These questions, of course, are many-sided. When I speak of
nationality, however, I have the _best_ specimens of a nation as
representatives thereof in view always. A man with a foreign accent
does not have the same standing or influence in municipal, state, and
national councils as one who speaks a pure English; there is always a
_feeling_ against him, no matter how able or patriotic he may be, of
some foreign influence as a substratum in his composition.


I have already stated that the thorax is the seat of the falling,
the abdomen that of the rising, voice. This can be tested by a
simple experiment, the result of which will be as startling as it is
phenomenal. _By simply pressing the stomach, or making the same rigid,
you will find that the fact of your doing so will prevent you from
uttering any sound belonging to the rising voice, or the stress laid
upon a word._

Take, for instance, the following:

           "Oh, say, can you see by the dawn's early light,"

and you will find that, upon pressing the stomach, or making the same
rigid, you will not be able to utter the words "say," "see," "dawn's,"
and "light." This will become more obvious in uttering these words
slowly than in doing so rapidly. You will have no difficulty, on the
other hand, in uttering the rest of the words, viz.: "Oh," "can you,"
"by the," "early."

Upon releasing the stomach and bringing a pressure to bear upon the
chest, on the other hand, you will have no difficulty in uttering the
first words mentioned, those of the rising, while you will be unable
to utter the last, those of the falling voice. This rule holds good for
all peoples and all languages.

There is this difference, however, as between English and German
speech, that, for the former, the falling voice (identical with that of
the thorax) _precedes_ the rising (identical with that of the abdomen);
while for the latter the reverse is the case;--Anglo-Saxons inspiring
into the chest and then into the stomach; Germans into the stomach and
then into the chest. Germans will have greater difficulty in making
this experiment than Anglo-Saxons, as words of the falling voice, as
a rule and in all languages, precede those of the rising. Germans,
consequently, must _think_ of the word of the rising voice, which, as
a matter of fact, succeeds the words of the falling, before they can
utter the latter. This difficulty is enhanced by the fact that while
the rising voice is generally confined to a single word, the falling
voice generally embraces several.

Hence the frequency of the use of the anapest (˘˘¯) and the dactylus
(¯˘˘), and the relative rarity of the use of the bacchius (˘¯¯) and
the antibacchius (¯¯˘); short always representing the falling voice,
which embraces more than one word, while long represents the rising
voice, which usually embraces but one single word; the definition
requiring more words than the thing to be defined. Hence, _for German
diction, the "thought" of the word of the rising voice must precede the
"utterance" of the words of the falling; while for English diction,
the "thoughts" of the words of the falling voice must precede the
"utterance" of the word of the rising._

A German may try and say the following:

    "In einem _Thal_ bei armen _Hirten_,
    Erschien mit jedem jungen _Jahr_,"

in such a manner as _not to think_ of the words which are italicized
before uttering those which immediately precede them, and he will find
that he will be unable to pronounce the latter.

An Anglo-Saxon may try and say the following:

    "And the star-spangled banner in triumph _doth wave_
    O'er the land of the free and the home _of the brave_,"

and he will find that in saying "in triumph doth wave," he must think
of the words "doth wave" before he will be able to utter the word
"triumph." Again, in saying "the home of the brave" he must think of
the words "of the brave" before he will be able to utter the word

A German, consequently, must _think_ of the principal word before he
can utter those which qualify it; an Anglo-Saxon must think of the
latter before he can utter the former.

In place of using mechanical pressure, the same results can be obtained
by making the respective parts rigid. Regarding this matter of _making
parts rigid_, I want to make the following explanation, illustrating
the physiological process going on in so doing.

While a part is rendered inactive, placed _hors de combat_, so to say,
by the application of mechanical pressure, the same result can also
be obtained by making such part rigid. To accomplish this, it is but
necessary to positively _think_ of such part, to associate your mind
with it, which is equal to an act of expiration when it relates to the
abdomen, and inspiration when it relates to the thorax. By positively
_thinking_ of the abdomen, which is equal to an expiration therefrom,
you will be unable to utter the stress or _rise_ of the voice, which is
the product of an expiration from the stomach; by positively thinking
of the thorax, which is equal to an inspiration into the same, you will
be unable to utter the _fall_ of the voice, which is the product of an
inspiration into the chest. The reason is obvious: _We cannot utter
sound in the same direction in which we breathe; sound and respiration
always following opposite directions._

For the purpose of making satisfactory experiments in this respect,
as, in fact, in every other respect in connection with these
investigations, it is necessary that inspiration or expiration, as the
case may be, should be _continuous_, that is, that either the one or
the other should be persisted in until a result is obtained; namely,
until an apparent increase or decrease in the size of the part of the
body under consideration, or an inflation or depletion of the same,
will be perceptible. Though it may be difficult at first, a person will
soon learn to distinguish between an increase or a swelling of a part,
which means inspiration into the same, and a decrease or a shrinking or
diminution thereof, which means expiration from the same.



In the further pursuance of the questions heretofore under
consideration, I shall now enter upon a theme of a still more subtle
nature. The question of metre, rhythm, accent, etc., is one which is
involved in much mystery; nor can I find that many persons entertain
precisely the same ideas as being expressed by these terms.

_Accepting as a fundamental principle the fact that our various
spiritual conditions are based upon our ability to extract the
necessary inspiration therefor from the air, which bears the same
relation to our spiritual existence that the earth does to that of
our body (in furnishing it with such elements as it requires for its
maintenance), I contend that we breathe for speech in as many different
modes as there are parts or elements in its composition._ This
proposition does not necessarily conflict with the fact that we also
draw elements from the air, as analytical chemistry has proven, which
serve for the construction of matter; such elements, however, instead
of being strictly material, as they have every appearance of being,
are, in reality, the spiritual complements of the matter they help to
form; matter and spirit going hand in hand in our entire composition.

In reading poetry, or giving expression to the same in song (I repeat),
we do so in a fourfold manner:

First: as to metre or time (the "measure" of time).

Second: as to the rhythm or the music pervading the voice, produced by
its rise and fall, also called cadence, or the idiomatic expression of
a language.

Third: as to accent.

Fourth: as to emphasis.

The _metre_ is produced by an artistic mode of breathing (in addition
to our ordinary and permanent mode), marked by regular repetitions of
a given order of inspirations and expirations which can be "measured"
as to the time consumed in their enunciation, and are therefore, not
incorrectly, called "feet."

The metre is a product or outcome of the _will_, a force which presides
over material-spiritual issues. It changes with our inclinations
and moods, and is expressive thereof. We can pass from one metre to
another at will, as the occasion may require. It is the _material_
part of speech, as we can measure it and account for it as to time
in space, supposing time to be incorporated. The metre expressive of
joy, for instance, being quick, that of sorrow slow; the former, if
incorporated, would take up less space than the latter, in the same
proportion as it consumes less time in being uttered.

The _rhythm_ is that characteristic quality which distinguishes one
language from another, the basis upon which it is built and around
which all its elementary words cluster; its fundamental principle,
its idiomatic expression, the music pervading its every syllable; the
inflection, the rise and fall, the cadence of the voice; the spirit of
a language, which is permanent and unchangeable.

The rhythm is an outcome of the _mind_; an influence which presides
over _spiritual-material_ issues. As _harmony is the first law of
nature_, so is that harmony which pervades our native tongue the law
upon which our individual and national characteristic expressions and
actions are based. We exercise it intuitively. It is innate in, and
unalterably connected with, our native tongue. It cannot be eliminated
therefrom, or put into it by a foreigner, except when acquired in
childhood, or by the study of such principles as I have attempted to
lay down in this book. It is inborn in every language as its spirit,
and is as enduring as that language itself. It is not subject to change
by the dictates of the will.

The _accent_ represents that element which distinguishes between the
character and meaning of words, and has no reference to parts thereof
or their relation to other words; the same word being pronounced in as
many different ways and with as many different _accents_ as it denotes
different senses or meanings; while _different words, embodying the
same idea, are uttered with precisely the same accent_.

The accent or intonation is an outcome of the _soul_; an influence
which dominates over our spiritual nature and over _spiritual issues_.
"The rose by any other name would smell as sweet." It is equally true
that any other name given to the rose would be pronounced by the same
indefinable intonation as its present name, with that same embodiment
of the mystery of the soul signifying the flower called "a rose."
The _word_ "rose," which is the same, or nearly the same, in so many
different languages, though possessing the same _spiritual_ elements in
them all, varies as to measure and rhythm in every one of them.

If the influence of the soul, embodying an idea in a word, through the
intonation we give it, were not the same for _all_ languages, it would
not be possible to translate poetry, and retain, to some extent at
least, that which is commonly called "the rhythm" of the original; nor
would it be possible to sing a song in another language, and retain,
even approximately, the spiritual elements of the original. We would
not be impressed with it, would not be _thrilled_ by it.

_The intonation of a word, expressive of the soul in the embodiment
of an idea, is a bond which unites all humanity_; not alone the human
souls of any special day and generation, but of all days and all
generations. But for the fact that the Greek soul is in us to-day,
that the native intonation of _their_ words is native with us and with
_all_ mankind, their _dead_ tongue would be _absolutely_ dead for us.
We could find no meaning in it, no beauty, no spirit, no soul. Think
of the melody pervading the soul of Homer and emanating from _his_
lyre still living and finding an echo in _our_ souls! Think of the
harmony pervading the soul of Schiller or Tennyson continuing to live,
and pervading the souls of the latest generations! Nor could Luther's
famous translation of the Bible or its beautiful English version ever
have been produced, and after production have made the same impression
on the mind, or been read with the same expression of the voice, as the
words of this same Bible made upon the minds, and were expressed by the
voice, of its original composers, but for the fact _that words of the
same meaning_, _in every language_ (aside from metre and rhythm), _are
pronounced precisely the same_. It is this universal comprehension of
their beauty which gives immortality to the strains of great singers,
whether they appear in their original form or are translated (that is,
if well translated) into foreign languages, or are set to music and
sung either in the one or the other.

If the performances of creating original compositions and their
translations were of a mere mechanical order, or were explainable from
a mechanical standpoint, no such soul effects could ever be produced.
The word, as such, is a _mechanical_ contrivance; but its intonation
is of the soul, being an emanation of the idea it represents. If our
ears were so schooled that by _their "intonation" we could comprehend
the meaning of words_, we could understand every language upon simply
hearing it spoken.

The people of all nations, through their eyesight, form the same
conception of an object; the same being impressed upon all minds in the
same manner. When a picture thus impressed upon the mind (brain) is
reproduced by, or is translated into, vocal utterance, it continues
to remain the same with all people. This does not refer to impressions
made by material objects alone, but extends to immaterial subjects as
well. Hence, knowing the meaning of a word in one language, we can at
once conjure up the idea it represents in all languages.

The sight, however, not only impresses our minds through the eye with
a given picture, but, as there is a correlation existing between all
our faculties, it also impresses the voice with a given inflection,
expressive of such impression upon the mind, and of no other
impression; any given sight or mental conception of any kind always
producing an inflection of the voice corresponding therewith. The vocal
expression of an idea might thus be called an _audible_ "photographic"
reproduction of the impression made by the original object upon the
eyesight, and, respectively, upon the brain, or it might be called a
phonographic reproduction thereof, supposing that the picture of an
object could be impressed upon the wax and could thus become audible.
How such a reproduction may be made from an _immaterial_ subject
would be more difficult to comprehend. Of the fact, however, that
an impression from abstract subjects _is_ made, and that an audible
expression of such impression is produced through the voice, and that
this is the case with all people alike, I expect to furnish positive
proof in a future publication. The fact of our not being accustomed
to distinguish in this manner between various expressions through
inflections of the voice is no proof that they do not exist.

The soul impresses every word with a seal of its own, characteristic
of the idea it embodies, there being as many accents or inflections of
the voice as there are _separate ideas_, or, rather, _groups of ideas_.
I beg leave to copy the following from the _Saturday Evening Post_ of
April 8, 1899:

    "Mr. Kipling recently told an interviewer: 'We write, it
    is true, in letters of the alphabet; but, psychologically
    regarded, every printed page is a picture book; every word,
    concrete or abstract, is a picture. The picture itself may
    never come to the reader's consciousness, but deep down below,
    in the unconscious realms, the picture works and influences

The accent is not subject to the will any more than the rhythm. The
will can do _this_, however: it can give greater weight, force, and
expression, and a wider scope, to the correlated forces of metre,
rhythm, and accent, through the

_Emphasis_ which it infuses into them. Through the emphasis, inlet
upon inlet is opened, an additional stream of fresh air is infused
into them, flooding the spiritual system. Valve upon valve is then
opened to let it out. Hence, emphasis is not an "element" of speech
proper, but an amplification, an addition to existing elements, rather,
impregnating them with the life of the heart, the feelings, the

In distinguishing in this manner, as I have in the above, between
the will, the mind, and the soul, I consider them parts of a great
spiritual system intimately connected with corresponding parts of our
physical system, but lay no claim as to the correctness of the _terms_
I have used. On the contrary, I feel that they are inadequate, and, at
most, a makeshift for more fitting expressions. There is a dearth of
expressional terms, and I am doing the best I can with such as are at
my disposal.

In the same sense, also, I distinguish between material-spiritual,
spiritual-material, and spiritual issues; and consider them the
outcome, respectively, of the will, the mind, and the soul.

I wish it were in my power to at once fully explain, as far as I am
able to offer any explanation at all, how it is _mechanically_ possible
to express these four elements of metre, rhythm, accent, and emphasis
(so widely differing from each other) at one and the same time, by four
different modes of breathing, carried on simultaneously, in addition
to our regular mode of breathing. The _perfection_ of elocution and of
singing is to carry on all these various processes simultaneously in as
perfect a manner as the subject and the occasion may demand.

I can explain the preceding, in part at least, as follows:

Verse is generally marked by the signs of long and short. While they
denote time or metre in the first instance, they are also used to mark
what is called "rhythm." Yet, while metre and rhythm are _apparently_
of the same order, they are, as a matter of fact, invariably of an
inverse order.

We cannot produce two distinctly different expressions while breathing
in one and the same direction. While we breathe for metre in one
direction, we breathe for rhythm in the opposite direction.

Regarding that mode of breathing expressive of the soul, and pertaining
to words in conformity with their _meaning_, and which, in the absence
of any more significant word, I have called the "accent," it is of an
altogether different order and does not conflict with these other modes
of breathing.

Having stated that rhythm and accent are involuntary productions, and
that metre alone is subject to the will, we must look to the metre,
measure, or time for our guide in our artistic vocal performances. To
this, emphasis must be added, as being likewise subject to the will.

As every language has its own time, or tempo, and cannot be properly
produced except in conformity therewith, it appears to me that it
should be the first aim of vocal science _to ascertain the exact nature
of such tempo_ for every separate language. _When the correct time is
kept, all other component parts of speech fall into line correctly
and involuntarily._ Just what the proportionate tempo is for English
as against German vocal utterance, I am unable to say, but it is much
quicker for the latter than it is for the former.

There is a duality existing between metre and rhythm: the former is
voluntary, the latter involuntary. Thus, also, is there a duality
between emphasis and accent, of which the former is voluntary,
the latter involuntary. Every voluntary factor, not only in vocal
utterance, but every voluntary factor in any artistic performance of
whatsoever nature, being sustained by an involuntary counter-factor;
the same as voluntary and involuntary muscles complement and sustain
each other.

Not only every artistic performance, but I dare say _every_ act or
action of any kind, is of a dual nature. Every separate duality, again,
being sustained by a counter-duality, every performance is sustained by
four different factors.

When an act is of a material nature and belongs to the hemisphere of
the abdomen, it is sustained by four counter-factors belonging to
the thorax. When it is of an immaterial nature and belongs to the
hemisphere of the thorax, it is sustained by four counter-factors
having their seat in the abdomen. Thus every act or action consists of
eight movements, or an _octave_ of movements.


Having established the fact that the rhythmic movements for English
and German vocal expression are directly opposed to each other,
the one being represented by the iambic, the other by the trochaic
measure, there is still a wide field open for investigation as to
the idiomatic expression of other languages. This it should not be
difficult to determine; personally, I cannot devote the necessary time
to this subject even as far as I might be able to do so in connection
with other languages of which I have some knowledge. The differences
in other tongues, of course, must be embodied in either of the two
measures named, as these embrace all others. Whatever may constitute
a nation's idiomatic expression must spring from a variation of either
of these. While the precedence is given to the abdomen in some and to
the thorax in others, the point of gravitation, which according to its
location calls for the special manner in which we inspire into and
expire from either the one or the other, establishes such variation in
the idiomatic expression of _all_ tongues.

All that is said about an Italian, a German, or any other "school"
(with the exception, perhaps, of what may constitute the difference
between what is called "the _old_ and the _new_ Italian school," and
which covers issues of a nature foreign to these investigations) has
its proper significance right here: There is no "school" in the sense
in which this word is ordinarily used. There are nations and there are
languages belonging to such nations. Each nation's language is that
nation's "school," and no one nation can go to school with any other

Peasants and the mass of the people generally in Italy, France,
Germany, etc., do not visit academies to study vocal art, yet their
mode of expression is precisely the same as that of the best vocal
artists of these respective countries. I do not mean to say, of course,
that the raw material their voices is made up of is as rarefied and
artistically trained, but that the composition, the fundamental element
thereof, is of precisely the same order as that of their most finished
artists. This raw material, on the other hand, in every instance,
varies from that of people belonging to every other nation.

The best thing, therefore, to be done, to bring such vocal material as
nature has endowed one with up to its greatest perfection, is to have
it "schooled" by artists belonging to one's own nation. There may be a
time coming, and the same may not be far distant, when methods may be
taught by which one may become acquainted with the spirit, and learn
the exact mode of the technical expression, of other nations besides
one's own. It will then become possible to comprehend these foreign
methods and to profit by comprehending them. As long as the principles
upon which they are based, however, are not understood, any attempt at
singing according to the same will be futile as an accomplishment or an
art, and _hurtful_ to the voice of the person making the attempt.

_Such person will only injure his or her own natural mode of
expression, without acquiring the foreign mode_.

The idea of learning a certain mode of expression, the Italian, for
instance, for singing, and applying it to _all_ tongues, is futile and
contrary to all reason. We might, with as much show of reason, say that
by learning to pronounce one foreign tongue we may apply that knowledge
to the pronunciation of every other foreign tongue.

The true state of affairs, and the only one to follow, is, and always
will be, this: First, and above all, learn to use your own tongue
thoroughly, for _all_ purposes of vocal expression. Then learn the use
of other tongues for vocal expression in those other tongues only. You
cannot apply the technical mode of Italian expression to English vocal
utterance any more than you can apply the technical mode of English
expression to Italian vocal utterance. An attempt at so doing is quite
as preposterous in the one case as it is in the other.

Besides, for the purpose of singing in his own tongue, an Anglo-Saxon
does not and should not want to acquire any other mode, as he is by
nature in possession of one of the _best_ modes of expression. There
is none intrinsically purer, none possessed of more vigor or power of
expression. There are those with greater softness combined with purity,
but lacking strength, as the Italian; and those with more soulfulness
combined with strength, but lacking purity, as the German. This
native element of purity allied to strength in the Anglo-Saxon, more
especially in the English-American, mode of expression is primarily
the cause of the high position in the artistic world of the American
singer. I ascribe the superiority of the "American" mode of expression
over the "English," when untrammelled as in song, in part to the
greater personal liberty, the greater want of conventionality, the vast
extent of our territory, and our almost constantly clear and unclouded
sky; all these being conditions that assist the free exercise of one's
natural endowments. To reach the best results in the art of singing,
the body as well as the soul must be, as far as possible, untrammelled
in any direction. While the idiomatic expression of the English
language here and abroad is the same, the social restraint and the
conservatism of the English as a nation act against the best outcome
of their gift of song, which demands for its best expression freedom
from conventionality or any other constraint.

Each nation is at its best in its own tongue. Our orators are equal to
any there are in the world. They do not speak according to the Italian,
the German, or any other school. If they did, they would utterly fail
and make themselves ridiculous. Why do people, then, want to "speak"
in this more expansive and soulful manner, called "singing," in these
foreign modes? I know the answer will be that singing and speaking are
things quite apart, having no affinity in their mode of production. I
shall show, as I have already partly shown, that they are of precisely
the _same order_, though different phases of that order; that they
cannot be separated; in so far as the elements which belong to speech
also belong to song, and those which belong to song also belong to
speech; but that they are used in an inverse order in the former as
well as in the latter.

Listen to a person breathing just before falling asleep, in a slow,
rhythmical order; material objects retire into the background and
assume a semi-spiritual shape. This is a similar condition to the
one we are in and in which we breathe during the production of song.
[By the by, sleep can be induced by thinking of a song, that is, by
mentally singing it]. No two nations, however, breathe just alike in
that condition, any more than they do during their waking moments;
the mode of breathing during sleep being a reversion always of the
one which obtains during our waking moments. Our mode of breathing,
however, _always_ determines our mode of vocal utterance. We can
reverse our voice, as we do in whispering, but it is always the same
voice, as a garment is the same when we turn it inside out.

Do you know, by the way, that the English whispering voice is the
German speaking, and the German whispering the English speaking voice?
Try it, and you will find it so. Go on whispering; that is, continue
to use your voice in the _same_ mechanical manner, but instead of for
whispering, use it for speaking aloud, and you will have the exact mode
of the other tongue. An Anglo-Saxon, in so doing, will be able to speak
German aloud, but not English; a German will be able to speak English,
but not German.

Thinking and speaking are of one and the same order. Thought makes the
impression of which speech is the expression. If this were not the
case, it would not be possible to pass from thinking to speaking or
from speaking to thinking at once, and without an effort. To produce
English speech, we must think English in a material way, that is,
anteriorly, and in so doing produce an instrument from which English
material or speech sounds emanate. To produce English song, we must
think English in a spiritual way, that is, posteriorly, and in so
doing produce an instrument from which English spiritual or song
sounds emanate. We cannot think English in either of these two ways
and produce German or Italian sounds for speech or song; nor can we
produce the latter sounds in any other manner than by _thinking_,
either materially or spiritually, in these languages, and in the proper
idiomatic manner inherent therein.

How can an English-speaking person, physically and spiritually formed
for English expression, and for no other expression, produce proper
Italian sounds? She will think Italian in an English way; and, while
singing Italian words, produce them with an English expression. That is
not singing Italian, however, but English. Is it likely that she will
succeed in acquiring the Italian mode of expression while her teacher
himself is ignorant of just what that mode consists in, and in what
it differs from the native mode of vocal expression of his scholar?
You might as well attempt to produce on a violin the sounds of a
violoncello or some other instrument.

To illustrate the power of the natural voice, it will but be necessary
to call attention to what occurs in almost any concert wherein one of
America's own daughters, now "_prima donna assoluta_," is the main
performer. She sings a grand aria, the work of an Italian master,
highly artistically and perfectly rendered. Musicians are delighted;
the public applauds. She reënters, and now the _donna_, changed to a
simple American, sings one of England's or America's own songs. The
audience, which before had been languidly listening, at the first
notes of this song is stirred, electrified, and now listens intently.
When she ceases to sing, there is a storm of applause, as to almost
shake the house. Where the artistic sense alone had been engaged
before, the hearts and the souls of her hearers have now been touched.
Yet I have seen the eccentric Von Buelow deliberately take out his
handkerchief after such a demonstration and wipe the "desecration" of
the "ditty" from the keys of the piano which had accompanied the song,
before he deigned to dignify it with one of his "classic" renderings.
No doubt he had much contempt for it all: the song, the singer, and
the public. The treasures of that "ditty," however, were of an order
similar to those hidden within the breast of every one composing that
audience. The pearls, floating through the room from the lips of one
of its own daughters, had, with a sympathetic touch, stirred it to
its very depths, while the foreign "aria" had left it comparatively
cold. Supposing an _Italian_ singer were to sing an English "aria" in
the English language to an Italian audience, and, after that, were
to produce one of her own simple Italian songs, would not the effect
be the same? Would Italians, in fact, care to listen to her English
interpretation, no matter how artistically rendered?

It is an entirely different thing, however, for German or Italian
singers to come here and sing their own songs in their own native
tongue. Though foreign, the production is genuine. They sing what
belongs to them, that in which they live, breathe; they sing their own
soul. Such a performance we can comprehend and appreciate, even as we
view a foreigner with interest, and honor him for that which is great
and good in him, and for which he is distinguished. We can soon _feel_
what is genuine and also that which is not; the former being nature's
own production, the latter imitated, forced--unnatural. Italians do not
sing English or German songs; why should Germans and English-speaking
people sing Italian and French songs, to the exclusion, very often, of
their own?

It was but recently that I heard a German choral society sing German
songs to a delighted American audience. Then came something weird,
strange; it was German, yet the words were not German. Looking at the
programme, it turned out to be the famous plantation song, "'Way down
upon the Suwannee River." The audience looked bewildered; there was
no applause, though, judging by the attitude of the singers, they had
expected to make this the grand hit of the evening.

The last performance of the great festival of the United German singers
in Philadelphia, in 1897, was the production of the "Star-Spangled
Banner." Everything in the appearance of the singers showed that this
finale was to be the crowning act of the entire festival. All the
singers, male and female, participated, and "Old Glory" was waved in
the air during the performance. But, as I had feared, it was a complete
failure. Instead of the vast audience spontaneously rising to its feet
and being carried away by enthusiasm, it remained cold and indifferent,
and there was no applause commensurate with what it would have been had
the performers sung the words with the true ring in them and the true
English accent. The same thing would happen if the "Marseillaise" were
sung in France, or the "Wacht am Rhein" in Germany, by foreign singing
societies, no matter how excellently schooled, and how artistically

A similar experience was had by Madame Brinkerhoff, who relates the
same in _The Vocalist_ of December, 1896, as follows:

    "To show how language is imbedded in the _timbre_ of the voice,
    I will relate an incident of last season. On the first night
    of the representation of the 'Scarlet Letter,' by Damrosch,
    sung by German singers, I was not surprised or in the least
    displeased at hearing this beautiful opera sung with the German
    _timbre_ of voice; but after listening to a whole act, I heard
    no German words; I listened in vain for the shaping of their
    consonants and vowels, although I heard the German sounds or
    _timbres_. So I asked the lady seated next to me what language
    the people on the stage were singing. 'German,' she replied. I
    said: 'But I hear no German words. Will you kindly listen and
    tell me when you hear German words?' She listened and replied,
    'No, I do not hear German words, but I thought before it was
    German.' She asked me if it was English. We could not decide it
    until the lights were turned on, and looked at the programme,
    which read, 'sung in English.'

    "This summer I asked a distinguished singer and teacher of
    Philadelphia in what language the 'Scarlet Letter' was sung in
    that city. She replied, 'Oh, German, of course.' 'Did you hear
    it?' I asked. 'Yes, and I enjoyed it very much, and it was sung
    in German,' she replied. 'It said in English on the programme,'
    I said. 'Well, if I was fooled, a great many more were
    fooled--beside myself, all our party thought so too. What are
    you going to do about it?' Gounod says: 'I did not like Italian
    singing; their tones were attacked so differently from the
    French method of singing that it was unpleasant at first, but I
    went again and again, for I could not stay away. I enjoyed it
    so much.'"

This is what Frau Johanna Gadski had to say in an interview printed in
_Werner's Magazine_:

    "I have never had any lessons in acting. The director of the
    Choral Opera told me at the outset that it was better to act
    by feeling when singing than by instruction. If one studies
    only acting and singing, one is not always natural. That is the
    reason why one who does not speak German does not understand
    the German people and their spirit, is not a German, and
    cannot sing the Wagner rôles. One must have the German spirit.
    Sometimes you write here in your papers that German singers
    cannot sing. I think they sing German rôles very well. One must
    sing, act, and, above everything, feel at the same time, and
    then one can speak to the heart of the listener."

Singing in a foreign tongue is, and must be, and always will be (until
these things are more thoroughly understood), to a large extent, simply
mechanical. Until then, the soul-stirring depth (_der Zauber_) of the
native composition will always be wanting. The Anglo-Saxon race has
been altogether too dependent upon European continental nations for
its examples, its support, and its development in _all_ branches of
art. This has been more particularly the case in regard to music and
song. Though German music, for obvious reasons, which give Germans
the preponderance on this field of art, ranks first among nations,
still there should be among English-speaking nations a greater native
development thereof in harmony with the national expression.

_Song_, above all, must be national; it must be in harmony with the
_genius_ of a nation to attain its highest development. It is too
closely allied to a nation's speech to be separated therefrom without
doing violence to both its music and its meaning. The music and the
words _must go together_; their union is as indispensable as it is
indissoluble. While we have excellent vocal material in this country,
it lacks the proper food for its nourishment. There is no want of
poetic compositions. No nation has their superior, or has them in
greater abundance. We have the words and the singers; but there is a
woful lack of a higher class of compositions for singing. The latter
are not at all commensurate with the abundance and the superiority of
the talent that is awaiting their appearance.

With compositions on a par with its vocal talent, this nation might
rank first among nations in the art of singing. It must stand on its
own footing. It must sing its own songs and must be taught by its
own teachers. This dictum may provoke indignation in "foreign" vocal
teachers. Though I regret the possible consequences to them, this
cannot be helped. Science is synonymous with knowledge, and knowledge
with truth, and "the truth must be told if the heavens should fall."


All of the preceding, in a manner, may be said to be a preliminary
argument for the great truth I claim to have discovered, namely, that
_in the sphere of the trunk of our body the material part of our nature
is represented by the hemisphere of the abdomen, its immaterial part by
that of the thorax; that in the sphere of the head a similar division
obtains, in conformity with which it is also divided into hemispheres
representing material and immaterial issues; and that every faculty,
and the exercise thereof, have their being in a dual action, in close
succession, emanating from these hemispheres._

The first proposition to be proven was that we breathe through the
œsophagus, conjointly with the trachea. If all I have said in the
preceding has not already convinced the reader of the truth of this
statement, I trust the following experiments will thoroughly convince
him thereof. These experiments will also furnish additional proof of
the fact that English and German modes of respiration are of an inverse

Not the slightest fear need be entertained as to the result of these
experiments. I have made the same, and others of a similar nature, over
and over again, without being in the least discomfited thereby; and I
may add that to the fact of having been entirely divested of fear, I
largely owe my success in all these undertakings.

If you are an Anglo-Saxon, and make the muscles of your throat rigid,
thereby stopping inspiration through the trachea into the thorax, you
will soon experience a decided movement of the abdomen, in conformity
with which it will first expand anteriorly, then posteriorly, and again
anteriorly. There will now be a pause, after which the abdomen will
be first expanded posteriorly, then anteriorly, and again posteriorly.
This is as far as you can go; you will be compelled to release your
hold on your throat after these six movements; the thorax meanwhile
remaining passive.

Upon next making the muscles of the back of your neck rigid, equal to
those of the œsophagus, the latter being thereby closed to respiration,
you will soon experience a decided movement of the thorax, by which
it will be first expanded posteriorly, then anteriorly, and again
posteriorly. There will now be a pause, after which the thorax will be
first expanded anteriorly, then posteriorly, and again anteriorly.

These twelve movements constitute one act of respiration during which
inspiration and expiration for thorax and abdomen equalize each other.
The first three movements of the abdomen, consisting of an inspiration,
an expiration, and an inspiration, constitute what is commonly called
an inspiration; the second three movements of the abdomen, consisting
of an expiration, an inspiration, and an expiration, constitute what
is commonly called an expiration. Of the six movements of the thorax
succeeding these, the first three, consisting of an inspiration, an
expiration, and an inspiration, are equal to an inspiration; the last
three, consisting of an expiration, an inspiration, and an expiration,
are equal to an expiration. We thus have four complete respirations,
two of which, equal to an inspiration and an expiration, belong to the
abdomen; and two, likewise equal to an inspiration and an expiration,
belong to the thorax.

Inasmuch as each of these four respirations is composed of three
separate movements, one complete respiration consists of twelve
separate movements of the respiratory organs. This relates to our
ordinary mode of breathing. For vocal utterance, more especially the
utterance of a vocal sound, these four respirations are first made
for the impression, and are then, in an inverse order, repeated for
the expression. This gives us eight movements, or an _octave_ of
movements, for each vocal sound; these eight movements, as a matter of
fact, consisting of twenty-four separate movements of the respiratory
organs. These movements, which in our experiment were of relatively
long duration, during our ordinary mode of breathing follow upon one
another very rapidly; thorax and abdomen, which during our experiment
were restrained, ordinarily and when unrestrained, acting and reacting
upon one another in quick succession.

The preceding experiment gives us the following result:


  Movement  1.  Anterior, inspiration.}
     "      2.  Posterior, expiration.}   _Inspiration._
     "      3.  Anterior, inspiration.}
     "      4.  Posterior, expiration.}
     "      5.  Anterior, inspiration.}   _Expiration._
     "      6.  Posterior, expiration.}


  Movement  1.  Posterior, inspiration.}
     "      2.  Anterior, expiration.  }   _Inspiration._
     "      3.  Posterior, inspiration.}
     "      4.  Anterior, expiration.  }
     "      5.  Posterior, inspiration.}   _Expiration._
     "      6.  Anterior, expiration.  }

All of the preceding has reference to the Anglo-Saxon mode of breathing.

Germans, under the same circumstances, will make movements of an
inverse order.

The first movement of the abdomen will be posterior, the next
anterior, the third posterior, which will be succeeded by anterior,
posterior, and anterior ones; while the movements of the thorax
will be anterior, posterior, and anterior, succeeded by posterior,
anterior, and posterior ones. This shows that _with Germans, expiration
antecedes inspiration_, while _with Anglo-Saxons, inspiration antecedes

In our experiment, with Anglo-Saxons, _inspiration_ took place in
the abdomen by two movements anteriorly to one posteriorly, and in
the thorax by two movements posteriorly to one anteriorly; while
_expiration_ took place by two movements of the abdomen posteriorly to
one anteriorly, and in the thorax by two movements anteriorly to one
posteriorly, as per this schedule:

      ANGLO-SAXON      Abdomen
  1.  Inspiration,     Ant., post., ant.
  2.  Expiration,      Post., ant., post.

      ANGLO-SAXON     Thorax
  3.  Inspiration,    Post., ant., post.
  4.  Expiration,     Ant., post., ant.

In the case of a German, it would have been more proper, for our
experiment, to have _first_ closed the muscles to the œsophagus, and
then those to the trachea, as Germans first breathe into the œsophagus
and then into the thorax. Had this been done, the result would have
been inverse to that of our experiment, as follows: The first movement
of the thorax would have been one of inspiration, the same as the first
movement of the abdomen; and the second movement of the thorax would
have been one of expiration, the same as the second movement of the
abdomen, thus:

      GERMAN          Thorax
  1.  Inspiration,    Ant., post., ant.
  2.  Expiration,     Post., ant., post.

  3. Inspiration,     Post., ant., post.
  4. Expiration,      Ant., post., ant.

_This shows that the movements of the abdomen are the reverse of those
of the thorax_:

With _Anglo-Saxons_, in such a manner that, while for the abdomen
_inspiration_ takes place anteriorly, it takes place for the thorax
posteriorly; and that, while for the abdomen _expiration_ takes place
posteriorly, it takes place for the thorax anteriorly;

With _Germans_, in such a manner that, while for the thorax
_inspiration_ takes place anteriorly, it takes place for the abdomen
posteriorly; and that, while for the thorax _expiration_ takes place
posteriorly, it takes place for the abdomen anteriorly.

These various modes of breathing find an illustration in the following:

Anglo-Saxons, while carrying a burden (for which purpose it is
necessary to hold the breath or to economize the same as much
as possible), inspire into the abdomen anteriorly and the chest
posteriorly, and in so doing expand the same accordingly; while
Germans, under the same circumstances, breathe into and expand the
abdomen posteriorly and the chest anteriorly. The action of the former
tending away from the diaphragm, that of the latter tending towards it,
exercise an influence on the spinal column which causes Anglo-Saxons
while carrying a burden to assume an erect, Germans a stooping
position. This has already been illustrated by calling attention to the
difference between the position of the Greek and Gothic caryatides,
the former representing the Anglo-Saxon, the latter the German mode of
breathing. The order for German soldiers, "Brust heraus, Bauch herein"!
("Breast out, belly in"), for Anglo-Saxons should be, "Breast in, belly
out"! The former gives German soldiers that stiff appearance, tending
towards the diaphragm, of which Heine has said:

    "Als haetten sie verschluckt den Stock,
    Womit man sie einst gepruegelt."

    ("As if the stick they'd swallowed
    With which they once were walloped.")

The fact that inspiration always consists in an inspiration, an
expiration, and an inspiration, while expiration consists in an
expiration, an inspiration, and an expiration, is one of the most
interesting observations I have made in connection with these studies.

These facts may be generalized in saying: There is no action connected
with life which consists of a single movement in any one single
direction; every action, of whatsoever nature, if it is outgoing,
consisting of an outgoing, ingoing, and outgoing movement; if it is
ingoing, of an ingoing, outgoing, and ingoing movement; every superior
movement consisting of a superior, an inferior, and a superior; every
inferior, of an inferior, a superior, and an inferior one; every left
movement, of one to the left, to the right, and to the left; every
right movement, of one to the right, to the left, and to the right; the
last movement _only_ being visible and accompanying action.

While our experiment is representative of the general principles
underlying our mode of breathing, the act of breathing, proper, is
subject to many variations. During their waking moments, or for
conversation, with Anglo-Saxons respiration takes place by thorax and
abdomen changing off, alternately, while with Germans they succeed one
another in the same manner as they did in our experiment, commencing,
however, with the thorax instead of with the abdomen, and with
expiration instead of with inspiration, as follows:

  1.  Insp.  Thorax--post., ant., post.
  2.    "    Abd.--ant., post., ant.
  3.  Exp.   Abd.--post., ant., post.
  4.   "     Thorax--ant., post., ant.

  1.  Exp.   Thorax--post., ant., post.
  2.  Insp.     "  --ant., post., ant.
  3.  Exp.   Abd.--ant., post., ant.
  4.  Insp.   "  --post., ant., post.

This shows an indirect movement for Anglo-Saxon, a direct movement for
German respiration. Hence, English enunciation is necessarily slow,
German relatively quick. It also shows that the reserve force with
Anglo-Saxons is held before it is expended; with Germans it is expended
almost as fast as it is engendered.

As there is an apparent discrepancy between the last schedule and the
previous one showing Anglo-Saxon mode of inspiration, I want to remind
the reader that our "experiment" was made mainly to set forth the
fact that we breathe through the œsophagus conjointly with breathing
through the trachea; but it was not intended to show our regular mode
of breathing.

Though Germans and Anglo-Saxons breathe in opposite directions, still
there is an affinity between them in so far as they breathe _along the
same plane_. Peoples who speak any of the Latin tongues, on the other
hand, breathe along a different plane, and so do Slavonic, Mongolian,
and other races. Anglo-Saxons and Germans, therefore, though opposed
to one another in one sense, are affiliated in another; and both may
be, therefore, as they often are, said to belong to the Teutonic
race, together with other peoples along the borders of the North and
Baltic Seas. In a similar manner, no doubt, other races possess their
similitudes and dissimilarities.

It should scarcely require any further proof on my part after this
and all I have previously said to show that, if any of the peoples
now speaking Latin tongues were in place thereof to speak English or
German, they would, in the course of time, cease to be Frenchmen,
Spaniards, or Italians, as the case might be, and would become
Anglo-Saxons or Germans; or that, if any of the Slavonic races or
peoples would do the same, the same result would eventually ensue; and
also that, if Anglo-Saxon or German peoples were to speak Latin or
Slavonic tongues in place of their own, they would eventually cease to
be Anglo-Saxons or Germans, and would become the people whose tongue
they were speaking; always provided, of course, that such tongues were
to be spoken _idiomatically_ correctly. Should any one still doubt
that language is the mainspring formulating peoples and nations in all
that essentially belongs to them and distinguishes them as such, I
confidently believe that that which I shall still further have to say
on this subject will eventually convince even the most obdurate of the
correctness of these assertions.

The preceding schedules both for English-and German-speaking peoples
show their mode of breathing during their waking moments and for
the purpose of conversation. During sleep and for the demands of
the singing voice, however, thorax and abdomen interchange with
one another in so harmonious a manner that their inspirations and
expirations appear as one respective inspiration and expiration.

The following schedules will show the relation of metre and rhythm to

Inspiration being of longer duration than expiration, I have in the
following signified the former by the sign for long (¯), the latter
by that for short (˘); while for the rise of the voice I have used
the sign for acute (´), and for its fall that for grave (`); for
comparison, see schedule on page 202.

      ANGLO-SAXON  Abdomen                Thorax
  1.  Inspiration,  `´`  3.  Inspiration,  `´`
                    ¯˘¯                    ¯˘¯
  2.  Expiration,   ´`´  4.  Expiration,   ´`´
                    ˘¯˘                    ˘¯˘

An experiment may be made by an Anglo-Saxon adopting the German mode of
breathing and then attempting to speak English, or by a German adopting
the Anglo-Saxon mode of breathing and then attempting to speak German,
which neither will succeed in doing.

In making the experiments just now under consideration, it will _not_
be necessary, after closing the muscles of the trachea or the œsophagus
for the first six movements, to continue doing so, as the next six
movements will ensue involuntarily. There may be several repetitions of
these twelve movements involuntarily or automatically following after
that; any special mode of breathing once assumed being apt to continue
indefinitely until another mode is inaugurated.

The same experiments may also be made by making _abdomen and thorax_
alternately _rigid_, or producing a state of rigidity through
mechanical pressure, in place of producing it with the muscles of
the œsophagus and the trachea. As this may appear simpler and "less
dangerous," there should be nothing to hinder any one from making these
experiments. The movements will not be as _pronounced_, however, in
the latter instance as they are in producing a _direct_ closure of the
trachea and the œsophagus.

There is a fourth mode of producing the same results, namely, through
the simple act of _continuously_ "thinking" of any particular part.
We may thus bring about a closure of the muscles of the trachea or
œsophagus, of thorax or abdomen, etc.; thought, which _precedes_ motion
for vocal utterance, _always_, as cause to effect, being the final
arbiter in all matters of respiration, unless the latter is of an
involuntary and simply functional character. While the act of breathing
for life pursues its even tenor, breathing for vocal utterance, though
of the same _order_, is subject to innumerable changes in conformity
with the sound, syllable, or word intended to be produced.

I am aware that there may be _apparent_ incongruities in some of the
preceding, and I presume there always will be. We can see things
only from our limited standpoint. I have undertaken to solve matters
supposed to be superhuman, or "of God," and hence _perfect_ in their
way, in a human, and therefore imperfect, manner. Our limitations
naturally extending to our power of observation, the duality of
our nature in matters of this kind does not permit us--I might say,
forbids us--arriving at _final_ conclusions. We can go as far as our
understanding permits us to go--beyond that, we may at most indulge in
speculation. I have limited myself to my limits, to what I could prove,
and have but rarely indulged in what I could not--in speculation.

    NOTE.--Since the above was written Dr. G. E. Brewer, who in
    conjunction with Dr. F. C. Ard, last month (March, 1899),
    in New York, successfully performed the very rare operation
    of laryngectomy, has told me that his patient had already
    (after a month) commenced to speak again, though as yet only
    in a monotonous whispering voice. She is doing so in spite of
    the fact that every vestige of her larynx, which had been in
    a diseased state, and which the doctor showed me, had been
    removed. When I told the doctor this mysterious "new" voice
    was that of the œsophagus and had always existed with his
    patient, as it exists with every one else, and had always been
    heard in conjunction with that of the trachea, he was greatly
    astonished, though naturally incredulous, but said he would


We are incomprehensible and mysterious beings. We do not know whence we
come nor whither we go; we do not know what agencies guide and sustain
us--our end is a tragic one. While the soles of our feet closely
adhere to the ground, our heads are in touch with the most distant
stars. We exercise faculties to perfection whose origin and mode of
operation are unalterably hidden from our knowledge. We possess gifts
and talents which raise us above the plane of our ordinary existence
and inspire us with the belief that we are related to the divinity, are
part of the divinity. It has ever been man's aim to penetrate this
darkness, to learn to comprehend _himself_. The vocation of the singer
is one to which this knowledge is indispensable. In the fulness of his
organization endowed by nature with a divine gift, the singer's aim and
desire is to retain and perfect this gift.

The birds sing their same individual song throughout their career. Man,
however, sings the song of his soul; a song as endless and as varied as
his thoughts. Song with him is not a gift alone, but its exercise is a
study, an art. He must sing _knowingly_; he must ascertain the source
of his song and the reason why certain causes produce certain results.
Hence the necessity for a science of the voice.

The knowledge of the exercise of our faculties is dependent on the
knowledge of life and on that of the spirit, without whose aid no
transaction of life of any kind ever takes place. Despairing of his
ability to penetrate into the realms of the spirit, aspiring man has
ever resorted to that which was next at his command--matter. Hence
the effort throughout all of man's history to reach the soul by way
of the body. But body and mind, in alliance, have ever succeeded in
frustrating these efforts; in keeping the secret of their duality and
mutuality intact from the gaze of man. Yet singers are determined to
find out _something_ in relation to the _voice_ at least. Finding that
we cannot penetrate into the relation existing between mind and matter,
the effort is renewed in the most persistent manner to explain the life
and the spirit, whose essence and outcome is the voice, by examining
into the relation of matter to matter.

Our professor, having discarded the assistance of life and the spirit,
dabbles in matter pure and undefiled. This process our young students
are invited to attend. They carry their youth and their talent, their
high hopes and aspirations, into the dissecting-room, where the
spirit of the voice is supposed to reveal itself among the ghastliest
spectacles. If a person of ordinary good sense, but not acquainted
with these subjects, were to attend a lecture on the physiology of the
voice and then attend a singing-lesson based upon the knowledge thus
attained, he would be apt to remark: "Can this performance possibly
be meant to be in good faith? Is not this man taking advantage of the
credulity of this woman, who is giving him her hard-earned money, but
to find before long that she has been beggared, not only in purse, but
in voice and spirit as well; that she has not been benefited in any
sense, but sadly robbed and betrayed?"

The persistency with which the modern scientist attempts to hammer a
voice out of the larynx and surrounding material tissues and other
physical agencies is a cardinal sin against the holy "spirit." When he
uses this supposed knowledge for coining it into money at the expense
of trusting and aspiring singers, he commits a malpractice, for which
some day he will have to go to the penitentiary of his own conscience;
that is, if he is in possession of any. "Vocal bands, mucous membranes,
tissues, ligaments, muscles, hollow spaces, air-pressure,"--these are
the factors productive of the voice divine; matter, nought but matter;
not a spark of the divine afflatus, not a spark even of life.

Journals devoted to the voice are full of these things. I will quote
but a single instance. At the Music Teachers' National Convention, held
in New York, in June, 1898, a sensation was created by Dr. Frank E.
Miller (see _Werner's Magazine_ for August, 1898, page 490) saying:

    "In other words, I wish to say that the action of the cavities
    or hollow spaces is anterior and prior to the action of the
    vocal bands in production of tone and tone-quality in our
    organs of speech. _With this novel fact I announce an original

It is such _stuff_ as this that these people feed upon and believe
in as revelations of great moment. Yet Dr. Miller and his coadjutors
might sit before these cavities or hollow spaces till the end of time,
looking, observing, probing, measuring, weighing, and determining their
relation to the vocal bands and vice versa, and not a vestige of the
spirit of the voice would ever make its appearance. The last conundrum
of this kind, and it has special reference to my discoveries, is as
follows: "May not the disturbance of speech known as stammering or
stuttering be mainly a condition caused by the putting out of gear of
one air-chamber in its relationship to other air-chambers, whereby
the air-pressures during the speech-act are at war with one another,
resulting in the well-known manifestations?" (_Werner's Magazine_ for
September, 1898, page 59). Air-chambers and air-pressures again. I
protest against being made _particeps criminis_ in any such proceeding.

When we go back to the earliest recorded times and find traces of an
attempt at expression by means of crude signs or figures impressed
upon the clay, we can see more of the potentiality of a science (or
a civilization) arising therefrom than we can from the teachings of
the laryngoscopists, who claim that the voice can be evolved from the
relations of various forms of matter to one another, without even a
trace of the spirit accompanying them.

Not many years since audiences of intelligent persons were invited to
watch a dark tent in which two men were so closely tied together (as it
was supposed) that they could not possibly move a limb. From this tent
noises would arise as of the dragging of chains along the floor, bells
ringing, etc., interposed now and then by a chair being flung through
the air. All this was done by the "spirits." This was a proceeding not
unlike the one now going on in the materialistic school in connection
with the spirit of the voice. There is no more likelihood of the latter
arising from the dark tent of the matter they are investigating than of
a real spirit appearing in that other tent. The performance, besides,
is not as amusing, no chairs being flung, etc. The audience is looking
on gravely expectant, but all remains forever monotonously, solemnly,
ominously, and cadaverously silent and resultless.

The _living_ grain of corn a blind hen after much scratching succeeds
in digging out from beneath a barn-yard floor bears a closer
resemblance to life, and hence to the voice, than the relations a
professor of physiology scratches together out of the various parts
which he supposes make up the instrument of the voice. These attempts
are so contrary to reason and common sense that in any other science
their originators would be laughed to scorn for their pains.

The other great issue with physiologists in connection with the
voice is that of breathing. Clavicular breathing, costal breathing,
diaphragmatic breathing, etc.--these are some of the terms in common
use, and the "modes" of breathing commonly practised. Each of these
modes is supposed to be practised separately and at the will of the
performer. They are praised and recommended or condemned according
to the special view of the practitioner. Systems are based on these
special modes and schools arise therefrom. What one "school" practises
is condemned by another. And how could it be otherwise, _all_ being

Being homogeneous entities, whose wholesome existence is based upon a
harmonious coöperation of all parts, we cannot practise breathing from
a special part without every other part more or less participating.
The act of breathing being our most vital performance, every other
part would suffer if it were confined to any special part. Our entire
system, therefore, must participate therein; the hemisphere of the
abdomen no less than that of the thorax; both hemispheres coöperating
with each other and with other streams introduced into our system
through the pores and every other opening in the body. For a moment,
and for an especial expression, one part may prevail over another; but
the true artist will always breathe in such a manner that after such an
effort all parts will again harmonize and balance one another. He will
have such control over his breathing powers that he can at any time
throw the balance of power into one direction; but he will never let
any one direction _continue_ to prevail over any other.

Every theory heretofore advanced in respect to our mode of breathing,
being based upon false premises, is wrong in the abstract, and
impossible of practical execution.

If I have expressed myself strongly, it is because I feel strongly
the injury which has been wrought by this so-called "science" of the
laryngoscopists. It has in thousands of instances hindered the natural
development of the voice, and has in many other directions done
incalculable harm; while it has in _no_ direction ever done any good.
It has oppressed the intellect, depressed the spirit, and suppressed
the soul of singers. Let me add but this: What would be the use of the
most scientifically constructed stove, filled with the most appropriate
fuel, if the flame were wanting to set fire to this fuel? Supposing the
laryngoscopists to comprehend the intricate construction of the stove
(the body), the highly sensitive and complicated apparatus of the fuel
(the instrument of the voice)--both of which, however, they are greatly
in the dark about--the flame would still be wanting to set fire to this
fuel and fill the stove with the holy glow of song. This flame (the
life, the spirit) they do not even pretend to be able to furnish. They
only give us the stove and the fuel, which remain forever dark, cold,
lifeless, inert.

To set myself up in judgment regarding these important issues, or to
place my judgment over that of so many eminent persons in the past
as well as the present, may appear to be a presumptuous, rash, bold,
and almost unwarranted undertaking. It is not my fault, however, that
there should be such utter confusion existing in these matters; that
no one should have ever succeeded in reducing this chaos to any kind
of order; that I am the heir, so to say, to this condition of affairs;
the trustee to this inheritance, who is to make use of it to the best
advantage of all that are interested.

Nor is it my fault that, not by dint of superior endowments, or any
other qualities of a superior order, but simply through the discovery
of the dual nature of the voice, I should have obtained an insight
into, a mastery over, these matters never before enjoyed by any man.
Yet there seems to be a disposition on the part of some persons to
throw blame on me for these facts; in place of furthering, to suppress,
this knowledge; in place of probing and investigating, to assume that
it is simply the outcome of a somewhat more than lively imagination.
It appears to me that this is partly done in the interest of the vast
literature on these subjects now in existence, which will become
obsolete and valueless as soon as the _truth_ in matters of the voice
has been established.

I dare say this simple fact, "We breathe and speak through the
œsophagus in conjunction with breathing and speaking through the
trachea," for _real_ knowledge, is worth all of the entire literature
on the voice, as a science, now in existence.

The science of the voice, as I understand and am trying to explain and
establish it, is one not so much of mechanical issues, though they
have their share in it, as one in which the spirit, this heretofore
unapproachable issue, performs the greatest and most vital part. It is
a question of life, and every issue and every agency governing life are
involved in it. How vast a science this science of the voice therefore
is, can be better imagined than at once fully comprehended. I am far
from being able to present it in all its aspects, but shall endeavor,
as I have already partly done, to continue to give a general outline of

It will take time and patience for any one to acquire this knowledge,
but the reward will be more than commensurate. To superficially obtain
it from others is not sufficient; one must learn to know it of one's
own knowledge. It is an academic study, embracing many sciences. A
person must enter into it with his whole being if he wants to get hold
of the spirit thereof and be truly benefited thereby. He must identify
himself with this knowledge, must become part and parcel thereof, or it
must become part and parcel of him. When this is done, true teachers
of the voice will arise, for here is a chance for greatness to assert
itself. It will be death to all hackneyed knowledge and charlatanism.

When the true knowledge of the production of speech and song for
_every_ language has been established, when we have a real science
of the voice, the teacher comprehending these issues in their entire
latitude will be able to teach how to interpret Mozart, Schubert, and
Wagner, Rossini and Verdi, Gounod, and every other master in the tongue
and the spirit in which he has produced his works.

The genius for execution in the art of singing is with the Anglo-Saxon
race, but not for composition, for original conception. It may come,
but it is not with it now.

The desire of the singer naturally is to embrace the highest in her
or his repertoire. At present it is Wagner. But how can Wagner be
rendered without a comprehension of his genius as expressed through
his language? The genius of the master and the genius of the language
he wrote and composed in cannot be separated. They are soul and body
of one and the same entity. Without the comprehension of the genius of
the German language, of its idiomatic expression, it is not possible
to reproduce what Wagner meant to express by his work. To sing German
with an English tongue is an anomaly; it is still English in the real
sense of the word, and not German. It is an unnatural proceeding, and
therefore injurious to the vocal organs of the singer.

No one would expect a foreigner, for the delectation of a native-born
audience, to recite before it poetry in the latter's language, or a
native-born person to recite before it in a foreign tongue. In either
case such a person would fail. Why, then, song, this sister art and

All these are questions which, though ever so reluctantly, artists
will have to face. It complicates their art, but it will also, when
understood, make it comparatively easy. Americans will then sing the
works of foreign masters with the same perfect ease that they do
those of their native composers, and so will persons of every other

Who will be able to teach a foreign language so well as the natives
of each respective country? provided such persons have learned to
comprehend the difference between the mode of production of their
speech and that of their scholars. In that case only will a German
be able to teach an Anglo-Saxon his (the German) language for either
speech or song. It will be the same with every other nationality.

The teachers, as a class, are with me. They feel that the efforts
of the physiologists to aid them in their vocation are wrong and
misleading. They have no faith in the revelation of matter. They know
matter is inert, powerless for any purpose without the indwelling
of the spirit; that the spirit reigns over and controls _every_
manifestation of life; and that the voice in singing is one of the
highest manifestations thereof. They know that song comes from the
heart and the soul, while it uses the body for its instrument.

I have been told I must build up before tearing down; before destroying
the old I must put something better in its place. I think it a
praiseworthy undertaking, in itself, to destroy the false and the
harmful. Besides, we cannot erect a new building before the old one has
been removed.

As for this _new_ science, I am doing what I can to put it into
shape, to give a visible and tangible form to it as it has developed
in my mind. The world has been able to do without it so long, those
interested in these matters must have a little patience.

I specially appeal to the _young_ to devote themselves to these studies
and to thus become the precursors in the application of principles
which are destined to revolutionize the vocal science of the world; the
old being often too old to get out of lifelong practices, no matter how
erroneous. I appeal in like manner to the students of medicine, and to
those of every other branch of science, whose aim is the knowledge of
man in any of, and all, his relations.



  Abdomen, 174, 198, 208

  Abstract thought, 72

  Accent, 178, 180

  Æther, 91

  Anapest, 167, 175

  Anglo-Saxon race, 136

  Animal magnetism, 14

  Anode, 106

  Antibacchius, 175

  Atlas, 127

  Autology, 56

  Bacchius, 175

  _Basic Law of Vocal Utterance_, 1, 6, 7

  Bladder, 46

  Blood, 65

  Brain, 46

  Breathing, 8, 93, 95, 159, 198, 214

  Brinkerhoff, Mme. Clara, 6, 195

  Bronchi, 8

  Caryatides, 104

  Cathode, 106

  Centrifugal, 124, 130, 152

  Centripetal, 124, 130, 152

  Charlatanism, 12

  Circulation of sound, 109

  Climate, 135

  Clothing, 78

  Colonization, 140

  Congenital deaf, 84

  Consonants, 89

  Dactylus, 164, 175

  Dentistry, 132

  Diaphragm, 80, 102, 203

  Dissecting room, 211

  Douglass, Frederick, 137

  Drumhead, 74

  Duality, 18

  Emphasis, 161, 179

  English-speaking peoples, 136

  Evolution, 18

  Expansion, 90

  Expiration, 80, 200

  Extirpation, 59

  Foreigners, 134, 173, 194

  Frænum linguæ, 42

  Gadski, Johanna, 196

  Generation, 107

  German writers, 65

  Gounod, 195

  Gravitation, 107

  Heidenhain, Mr., 14

  Heine, 164, 204

  Hemispheres, 88

  Holmes, Dr. O. W., 12, 123

  Huxley, 21

  Hypnotism, 52

  Iambic measure, 167

  Idiomatic expression, 110, 113, 123, 143, 148

  Idiom of the sea, 144;
    of the forest, 146

  Immigration, 134

  Inspiration, 177, 200

  Intonation, 161

  Introspection, 4, 56, 68

  Kidneys, 46

  Laryngoscope, 50

  Laryngoscopists, 215

  Larynx, 9

  Lungs, 46

  Lunn, Mr., 167

  Matter, 211, 218

  Medicine, 220

  Metre, 161, 172, 178

  Miller, Dr., 212

  Mind, 184

  Motion, 89, 142, 151

  Müller, Prof. Max, 99

  Octave, 93

  Œsophagus, 198, 208

  Palimpsest, 96

  Phonograph, 71, 88, 90

  Point of gravitation, 101

  Posterior surfaces, 68

  "R" sound, 104

  Race distinctions, 137

  Reinforcement, 47

  Religion, 17

  Replica, 19, 42, 129

  Rhythm, 68, 93, 160, 172, 178

  Rigidity, 57, 59, 176, 208

  Roentgen, Professor, 105

  Rush, Dr., 48

  Saxon words, 168

  School of singing, 187

  Science of the voice, 210

  Sight, 183

  Simple sounds, 66, 68, 88, 106

  Singers, 210

  Singing, 57, 158

  Soft palate, 129

  Soul, 184

  Speech and song, 158

  Spirit, 54, 211, 220

  Spirits, 44

  Spiritual cell, 148

  Stammering, 97

  Stuttering, 97

  Surd, 89

  Teachers, 13, 218, 219

  Teeth, 132

  Teutonic race, 206

  Thorax, 174, 198, 208

  Thought, 192

  Timbre, 195

  Tongue, 61, 101

  Trachea, 198, 208

  Trochaic measure, 165

  Tuning, 157

  Ureters, 47

  Ventriloquism, 73

  Virchow, Professor, 21

  Viscera, 46

  Vivisection, 51

  Vocal science, 220

  Vocal sounds, 67, 89

  Voice of the œsophagus, 1;
    falling, 175;
    rising, 175;
    whispering, 191

  Von Buelow, 193

  _Werner's Magazine_, 6, 7, 196, 212, 213

  Will, 179, 184

    Transcriber's Notes:

    Simple spelling, grammar, and typographical errors were
    silently corrected.

    Anachronistic and non-standard spellings retained as printed.

    Italics markup is enclosed in _underscores_.

    Bold and underlined markup is enclosed in =equals=.

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