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the arms and legs stretched out, and every sinew of the body unstrung, the eyes heavy or closed; the words, if any, crawl out of the mouth, but half formed, scarce audible to any ear, and broken off in the middle by powerful sleep.
People who walk in their sleep, (of which our inimitable Shakespeare has in his tragedy of MACBETH, drawn out a fine scene) are said to have their eyes open; though they are not the more for that, conscious of any thing but the dream, which has got possession of their imagination. I never saw one of those persons; therefore cannot describe their manner from nature; but I suppose, their speech is pretty much like that of persons dreaming, inarticulate, incoherent, and very different, in its tone, from what it is when waking.
Intoxication, shows itself by the eyes half shut, sleepy, stupid, inflamed. An idiot smile, a ridiculous surliness, or affected bravado, disgraces the bloated countenance. The mouth open, tumbles out nonsense in heaps, without articulation enough for any ear to take it in, and unworthy of attention, if it could be taken in. The head seems too heavy for the neck. The arms dangle from the shoulders, as if they were almost cut away, and hung by shreds. The legs totter and bend at the knees, as ready to sink under the weight of the reeling body. And a general incapacity, corporeal and mental, exhibits human nature sunk below the brutal.
Anger, (violent) or rage, expresses itself with rapidity, interruption, noise, harshness and trepidation. The neck stretched out; the head forward, often nodding and shaken in a menacing manner, against the object of the passion. The eyes red, inflamed, staring, rolling and sparkling; the eyebrows drawn down over them; and the forehead wrinked into clouds. The nostrils stretched wide; every vein swelled; every muscle strained; the breast heaving, and the breath fetched hard. The mouth open, and drawn on each side toward the ears, showing the teeth in a gnashing posture. The face bloated, pale, red, or sometimes almost black. The feet stamping; the right arm often thrown out, and menacing with the clenched fist shaken, and a general and violent agitation of the whole body.
Peevishness, or ill nature, is a lower degree of anger; ard is therefore expressed in the above manner, only more moderate; with half sentences and broken speeches, uttered hastily; the upper lip drawn up disdainfully; the eyes asquint upon the object of displeasure.
Malice, or spite, sets the jaws, or gnashes with the teeth; sends blasting flashes from the eyes; draws the mouth toward the ears; clenches both fists, and bends the elbows in a straining manner. The tone of voice and expression, are much the same with that of anger; but the pitch not so loud.
Envy, is a little more moderate in its gestures, than malice; but much the same in kind.
Revenge, expresses itself as malice.
Cruelty. (See Anger, Aversion, Malice, and the other irascible passions.)
Complaining, as when one is under violent bodily pain, distorts the features; almost closes the eyes; sometimes raises them wishfully; opens the mouth; gnashes with the teeth; draws up the upper lip; draws down the head upon the breast, and the whole body together. The arms are violently bent at the elbows, and the fists strongly clenched. The voice is uttered in groans, lamentations, and violent screams. Extreme torture produces fainting and death.
Fatigue, from severe labour, gives a general languor to the whole body. The countenance is dejected. (See Grief) The arms hang listless; the body, if sitting, or lying along, be not the posture, stoops, as in old age. (See Dotage.) The legs, if walking, are dragged heavily along, and seem at every step ready to bend under the weight of the body. The voice is weak, and the words hardly enough articulated to be understood.
Aversion, or hatred, expressed to, or of any person or thing, that is odious to the speaker, occasions his drawing back, as avoiding the approach of what he hates; the hands, at the same time, thrown out spread, as if to keep it off. The face turned away from that side toward which the hands are thrown out; the eyes looking angrily and asquint the same way the hands are directed; the eyebrows drawn downwards; the upper lip disdainfully drawn up; but the teeth set. The pitch of the voice loud; the tone chiding, and unequal, surly, vehement. The sentence short
Commendation, or approbation, from a superior, puts on the aspect of love, (excluding desire and respect) and expresses itself in a mild tone of voice; the arms gently spread; the palms of the hands toward the person approved. Exhorting, or encouraging, as of an army by a
general, is expressed with some part of the looks and actions of courage.
Jealousy, would be likely to be well expressed by one who had often seen prisoners tortured in the dungeons of the inquisition, or who had seen what the dungeons of the inquisition are the best earthly emblem of; I mean hell. For next to being in the Pope's or in Satan's prison, is the torture of him who is possessed with the spirit of jealousy. Being a mixture of passions directly contrary to one another, the person, whose soul is the seat of such confusion and tumult, must be in as much greater misery than Prometheus, with the vulture tearing his liver, as the pains of the mind are greater than those of the body. Jealousy is a ferment of love, hatred, hope, fear, shame, anxiety, suspicion, grief, pity, envy, pride, rage, cruelty, vengeance, madness, and if there be any other tormenting passion, which can agitate the human mind. Therefore to express jealousy well, requires that one know how to represent justly all these passions by turns. (See Love, Hatred, &c.) And often, several of them together. Jealousy shows itself by restlessness, peevishness, thoughtfulness, anxiety, absence of mind. Sometimes it bursts out in piteous complaint, and weeping; then a gleam of hope, that all is yet well, lights up the countenance into a momentary smile. Immediately the face clouded with a general gloom, shows the mind overcast again with horrid suspicions and frightful imaginations. Then the arms are foided upon the breast; the fists violently clenched; the rolling, bloody eyes dart fury. He hurries to and fro; he has no more rest than a ship in a troubled sea, the sport of winds and waves. Again he composes himself a little to reflect on the charms of the suspected person. She appears to his imagination like the sweetness of the rising dawn. Then his monster breeding fancy represents her as false as she is fair. Then he roars out as one on the rack, when the cruel engine rends every joint, and every sinew bursts. Then he throws himself on the ground. He beats his head against the pavement. Then he springs up, and with the look and action of a fury, bursting hot from the abyss, he snatches the instrument of death, and after ripping up the bosom of the loved, suspected, hated, lamented fair one, he stabs himself to the heart, and exhibits a striking proof, how terrible a creature a puny mortal is, when agitated by an infernal passion.
Dotage, or infirm old age, shows itself by talkativeness, boasting of the past, hollowness of eyes and cheeks, dimness of sight, deafness, tremor of voice, the accents, through default of teeth, scarce intelligible; arms weak, knees tottering, head paralytic, hollow coughing, frequent expectora tion, breathless wheezing, laborious groaning, the body stooping under the insupportable load of years which soon shall crush it into the dust, from whence it had its origin. Folly, that of a natural idiot, gives the face an habitual thoughtless, brainless grin. The eyes dance from object to object, without ever fixing steadily upon any one. A thousand different and incoherent passions, looks and gestures, speeches and absurdities, are played off every moment.
Distraction, opens the eyes to a frightful wideness; rolls them hastily and widely from object to object; distorts every feature; gnashes with the teeth; agitates all parts of the body; rolls in the dust; foams at the mouth; utters with hideous bellowings, execrations, blasphemies, and all that is fierce and outrageous; rushing furiously on all who approach; and if not restrained, tears its own flesh and destroys itself.
Sickness, has infirmity and feebleness in every motion and utterance. The eyes dim and almost closed; cheeks pale and hollow; the jaw fallen; the head hung down, as if too neavy to be supported by the neck. A general inertia prevails. The voice trembling; the utterance through the nose; every sentence accompanied with a groan; the hand shaking, and the knees tottering under the body; or the body stretched helpless on the bed.
Fainting, produces a sudden relaxation of all that holds the human frame together, every sinew and ligament unstrung. The colour flies from the vermilion cheek; the sparkling eye grows dim. Down the body drops, as helpless and senseless as a mass of clay, to which, by its colour and appearance, it seems hastening to resolve itself. Which leads me to conclude with
Death, the awful end of all flesh; which exhibits nothing in appearance, different from what I have been just describing; for fainting continued ends in death; a subject almost too serious to be made a matter of artificial imitation.
Lower degrees of every passion are to be expressed by more moderate exertions of voice and gesture, as every public speaker's discretion will suggest to him.
Mixed passions, or emotions of the mind, require mixed
expression. Pity, for example, is composed of grief and love. It is therefore evident that a correct speaker must by his looks and gestures, and by the tone and pitch of his voice, express both grief and love, in expressing pity, and so of the rest.
It is to be remembered, that the action, in expressing the various, humours and passions, for which I have here given rules, is to be suited to the age, sex, condition and circumstances of the character. Violent anger, or rage, for example, is to be expressed with great agitation, (See Anger) but the rage of an infirm old man, of a woman, and of a youth, are all different from one another, and from that of a man in the flower of his age, as every speaker's discretion will suggest. A hero may show fear or sensibility of pain, but not in the same manner as a girl would express those sensations. Grief may be expressed by a person reading a melancholy story, or a description in a room. It may be acted upon the stage. It may be dwelt upon by the pleader at the bar; or it may have a place in a sermon. The passion is still grief. But the manner of expressing it will be different in each of the speakers, if they have judgment.
A correct speaker does not make a movement of limb or feature, for which he has not a reason. If he addresses heaven, he looks upwards. If he speaks to his fellow creatures, he looks round upon them. The spirit of what he says, or is said to him, appears in his look. If he expresses amazement, or would excite it, he lifts up his hands and eyes. If he invites to virtue and happiness, he spreads his arms, and looks benevolent. If he threatens the vengeance of heaven against vice, he bends his eyebrows into wrath, and menaces with his arm and countenance. He does not needlessly saw the air with his arm, nor stab himself with his finger. He does not clap his right hand upon his breast unless he has occasion to speak of himself, or to introduce conscience, or somewhat sentimental. He does not start back, unless he wants to express horror or aversion. He does not come forward, but when he has occasion to solicit. He does not raise his voice, but to express somewhat peculiarly emphatical. He does not lower it but to contrast the raising of it. His eyes, by turns, according to the humour of the matter he has to express, sparkle fury; brighten into joy; glance disdain; melt into grief; frown disgust and hatred; languish into love; or glare distraction.