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bas been any considerable diversity of accentuation among out prosodists, I have consulted the best authorities, and have sometimes ventured to decide: though, as Labbe says, “ Sed his de “ rebus, ut aliis multis, malo doctiorum judicium expectare,
quam meam in medium proferre sententiam."
But the most important object of the present work is settling the English quantity, (see Rules 20, 21, 22) with which we pronounce Greek and Latin proper names, and the sounds of some of the consonants. These are points in a state of great uncertainty; and are to be settled, not so much by a deep, knowledge of the dead languages, as by a thorough acquaintance with the analogies and general usage of our own tongue. These must, iu the nature of things, enter largely into the pronunciation of a dead language, and it is from an attention to these that the Author hopes he has given to the Public a work not entirely unworthy of their acceptance.
VERY vowel with the accent on it at the end of a syllable is pronounced as in English, with its first long open sound: thus Ca' to,* Philome' la, Ori' on, Pho' cion, Lu cifer, &c. have the accented vowels sounded exactly as in the English words paper, me' tre, spi' der, no' ble, tu' tor, &c.
2. Every accented vowel not ending a syllable, but followed by a consonant, has the short sound as in English: thus Man' lius, Pen' theus, Pin' darus, Colchis, Cur' tius, &c. have the short sound of the accented vowels, as in man' ner, plen'ty, prin' ter, collar, cur' few, &c.
3. Every final i, though unaccented, has the long open sound: thus the final i forming the genitive case, as in. Magis tri, or the plural pumber, as in De'cii, has the long open sound, as in vi'al; and this sound we give to this vowel in this situation, because the Latin i final in genitives, plurals, and preterperfect tenses of verbs, is always long; and consequently
* The pronunciation of Cato, Plato, Cleopatra, &c. has been but lately adopted. Quin, and all the old dramatic school, used to pronounce the a in these and similar words like the a in father. Mr. Garrick, with great good sense, as well as good taste, brought in the present pronunciation, and the pro« priety of it has made it now universal.
where the accented i is followed by i final, both are pronounced with the long diphthongal i, like the noun eye, as Achi' vi.*
4. Every unaccented i ending a syllable not final, as that in the second of Alcibiades, the Hernici, &c. is pronounced like e, as if written Alcebiades, the Herneci, &c. So the last syllable but one of the Fabii, the Horatii, the Curiatii, &c. is pronounced as if written Fa-be-i, Ho-ra-she-i, Cu-re-a-she-i; and therefore if the unaccented i and the diphthong & conclude a word, they are both pronounced like, as Harpyia, HarPY' e-e.
5. The diphthongs & and æ, ending a syllable with the accent on it, are pronounced exactly like the long English e, as Cæsar, Eta, &c. as if written Cee'sar, E'ta, &c.; and like the short e, when followed by a consonant in the same syllable, as Dedalus, Edipus, &c. pronounced as if written Deddalus, Eddipus, &c. The vowels ei are generally pronounced like long i.t-For the vowels eu in final syllables, see the words Idomeneus: and for the out in the same syllables, see the word Antinous, and similar words, in the Terininational Vocabulary.
5. Y is exactly under the same predicament as i. It is long when ending an accented syllable, as Cyrus; or when ending an unaccented sylable if final, as Ægy, Æ' py, &c.; short when joined to a consonant in the same syllable, as Lyc'idas; and sometimes long and sometimes short, when ending an initial syl
* This is the true analogical pronunciation of this letter when ending an accented syllable; but a most disgraceful affectati of foreign pronunciation has exchanged this full diphthongal sound for the meagre, squeezed sound of the French and Italian i, not only in almost every word derived from those languages, but in many which are purely Latin, as Faustina, Messalina, &c. Nay, words from the Saxon have been equally perverted, and we hear the i in Elfrida, Edwina, &c. turned into Elfreeda, Edweena, &c. It is true, this is the sound the Romans gave to their i; but the speakers here alluded to are perfectly innocent of this, and do not pronounce it in this manner for its antiquity, but its novelty.
+ See Élegeia, Hygeia, &c. in the Terminational Vocabulary of Greek anet Latin Proper Names,
lable not under the accent, as Ly-cur' gus, pronounced with the first syllable like lie, a falsehood; and Lysimachus with the first syllable like the first of legion; or nearly as if divided into Lysim' a-chus, &c. See Principles of English Pronunciation prefixed to the Critical Pronouncing Dictionary, No. 117, 118, &c. and 185, 186, 187.
7. Å, ending an unaccented syllable, has the same obscare sound as in the same situation in English words; but it is a sound bordering on the Italian a; or the a in fa-ther, as Dia',
' na, where the difference between the accented and unaccented a is palpable. See Principles of English Pronunciation prefixed to the Critical Pronouncing Dictionary, No. 92, and the letter A.
8. E final, either with or without the preceding consonant, always forms a distinct syllable, as Penelope, Hippocrene, Evoe, Amphitrite, &c. Wheú any Greek or Latin word is anglicised into this termination, by cutting off a syllable of the original, it becomes then an English word, and is pronounced according to our own analogy: thus Acidalius, altered to Acidale, has the final e sunk, and is a word of three syllables only: Proserpine, from Proserpina, undergoes the same alteration. Thebes and Athens, derived from the Greek on6n and Aonin, and the Latin Theba and Athena, are perfectly anglicised; the former into a monosyllable, and the latter into a dissyllable: and the Greek Kenon and the Latin Creta have both sunk into the English monosyllable Crete: Hecate likewise pronounced in three syllables when Latin, and in the same number in the Greek word Εκατη, , in English is universally contracted into two, by sinking the final e. Shakespeare seems to have begun as he has now confirmed this pronunciation by so adapting the word in Macbeth:
• Why how now, Hecat'? you look angerly."-Act. IV. Perhaps this was no more that a poetical licence to him; but the actors have adopted it in the songs in this tragedy:
He-cate, He-cate, come away'
And the play-going world, who form no small portion of what is called the better sort of people, have followed the actors in this word: and the rest of the world have followed them.
The Roman magistrate, named Ædilis, is anglicised by pronouncing it in two syllables, Æ' dile. The capital of Sicily, Syracusa, of four syllables, is made three in the English Syr' acuse; and the city of Tyrus, of two syllables, is reduced to a monosyllable in the English Tyre.
Rules for pronouncing the Consonants of Greek and Latin
9. C and G are hard before a, o, and u, as Cato, Comus, Cures, Galba, Gorgon, &c.-and soft before e, i, and y, as Cebes, Scipio, Scylla, Cinna, Geryon, Geta, Ģillus, Gyges, Gymnosophista, &c.*
10. T, S, and C, before ia, ie, ii, io, iu, and eu, preceded by the accent, in Latin words, as in English, change into sh and zh, as Tatian, Statius, Portius, Portia, Socias, Caduceus, Accius, Helvetii, Mæsia, Hesiod, &c. pronounced Tashean, Stasheus, Porsheus, Porshea; Sosheas, Cadusheus, Aksheus, Helveshei, Mezhea, Hezheod, &c. See Principles of English Pronunciation prefixed to the Pronouncing Dictionary, No. 357, 450,
* That this general rule should be violated by smatterers in the learned languages in such words as Gymnastic, Heterogeneous, &c. it is not to be wondered at; but that men of real learning, who do not want to show themselves off to the vulgar by such inuendos of their erudition, should give into this irregularity, is really surprising. We laugh at the pedantry of the age of James the First, where there is scarcely a page in any English book that is not sprinkled with twenty Greek and Latin quotations; and yet do not see the similar pedantry of interlarding our pronunciation with Greek and Latin sounds; which may be affirmed to be a greater perversion of our language than the former. In the one case, the introduction of Greek and Latin quotations does not interfere with the English phraseology; but in the other the pronunciation is disturbed, and a motley jargon of sounds introduced, as inconsistent with true taste as it is with neatpess and uniformity.