CHAP, IV
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168 CONVICTION. [PAI1.T I.§ 9. The Arguments which should be placed first in order are, ccetm'is paribus, the most Obvious , and such as naturally first occur. 'l'he most obvioltS m'flumrmts 'tave precedence, '!1l1is is evidently the natural order; and the adherence to it gives an easy, natural air to the Composition . It is seldom therefore worth while to depm't from it for the sake of beginning with the most powerful arguments, (when they happen not to be also the most obvious ,) or on the other hand, for the sake of reserving these to the Jast, and beginning with the weaker; 01' again, of imitating, as some recommend, Nestor's plan of drawing up troops, placing the hest first and last, and the weakest in the middle. It will be advisable however (and by this means yon may secure this last advantage) when the strongest arguments naturally occupy the foremost place, to 1'ecapitulate in a 1'everse ordel'; which will destroy the appearance of anti-climax, and is also in itself the most easy and natural mode of recapitulation. Let, Reverse 1'e· capitulation. e.g. the arguments be A, B, C, D, E, &C. each less weighty than the pI'eceding; then, in recapitulating, proceed from E to D, C, B, concluding with A. CHAP, IV.-O! Introductions and Conclusions.§l. AN Introduction, Exordium, or Procme, is, as Aristotle has justly remal'ked, not to be a(,,connted one of the essential parts of a Composition, since it is not in every case necessary. In most, howevCl', except such as are extremely short, it is found advisable to premise sometbing before we enter on the main argument, to avoid an appearance of abruptness, and to facilitate, in some way or CHAP. IV. § I.J OF INTRODUCTIONS AND CONCLUSIONS. 169 other, the objeet proposed. In larger works this assumes the appellation of Preface or Advertisement; and not unfrequently two a1'e employed, one under the name of Preface , and another, more closely connected with the main work, under that of Introduction. 1'he rules whieh havc been laid down already will apply equally to that preliminary course of argument of which Introductions often consist. The writers before Aristotle are ccnsured by him for inaccuracy , in placing under the head of Introductions, as properly belonging to them, many things which are not more appropriate in the beginning than elsewhere; as, e. g. the contrivances for exciting the hearers' attention; which, as he observes, is an improper arrangement; since, though such an Introduction may sometimes be l'equired, it is, generally speaking, anywhere else rather than in the beginning , that the attention is likely to flag. It is to be obseI'ved, however, that there is one kind of fault sometimcs committed in Introductions , which does lead to this result. If a Speaker alarms his audience in the outDanger of announcing too muck. set, by announcing a great number of topics to be handled, and perhaps also several preliminary considerations, preparatol 'y explanations, &c., they will be likely (especially after Ii protracted Debate) to listen with impatience to what they expect will prove tedious, and to feel an anticipated weariness even from the very commencement. The rule laid down by Cicero, (De Orat.) not Intt'oducto compose the Introduction first, but to con- tions not to sider first the main argument, and let that be comsuggest the Exordium, is just and valuable; posed fit'st, for othel'wise, as he obsel'ves, seldom anything will suggest itself but vague generalit.ies; "common" topics, as he calls them, i. e. 'what would equally well suit several different compositions; whereas an Introduction that is composed last, will naturally spring out of the main subject, and appear appropriate to it. 170 CONVICTION. [PART!.§ 2. 1st. One of the objects most frequently pro· lntl'oduction posed in an Introduction, is, to show that the inquisitive. subject in question is important, CU1'iOUS, or otherwise interesting, and worthy of attention. 'J'his may be called an " Introduction inquisitive *." Introdu.. 2ndly, It will frequently happen also, when tion pm'a- the point to be proved or explained is one doxical. which may be very fully established, or on which there is little or no doubt, that it may nevertheless be st1'ange, and different from what might have been expected ; in which case it will often have a good effect in rousing the attention, to set fmih as strongly as possible this pamdoaJical character, and...


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