A becomes an before a vowel or before h mute for the sake of euphony

or agreeable sound to the ear. An apple, an orange, an heir, an

honor, etc.


It is the object of every writer to put his thoughts into as effective

form as possible so as to make a good impression on the reader. A person

may have noble thoughts and ideas but be unable to express them in such a

way as to appeal to others, consequently he cannot exert the full force

of his intellectuality nor leave the imprint of his character upon his

time, whereas many a man but indifferently gifted may wield such a facile

pen as to attract attention and win for himself an envious place among

his contemporaries.

In everyday life one sees illustrations of men of excellent mentality

being cast aside and ones of mediocre or in some cases, little, if any,

ability chosen to fill important places. The former are unable to impress

their personality; they have great thoughts, great ideas, but these

thoughts and ideas are locked up in their brains and are like prisoners

behind the bars struggling to get free. The key of language which would

open the door is wanting, hence they have to remain locked up.

Many a man has to pass through the world unheard of and of little benefit

to it or himself, simply because he cannot bring out what is in him and

make it subservient to his will. It is the duty of every one to develop his

best, not only for the benefit of himself but for the good of his fellow

men. It is not at all necessary to have great learning or acquirements, the

laborer is as useful in his own place as the philosopher in his; nor is it

necessary to have many talents. One talent rightly used is much better than

ten wrongly used. Often a man can do more with one than his contemporary

can do with ten, often a man can make one dollar go farther than twenty in

the hands of his neighbor, often the poor man lives more comfortably than

the millionaire. All depends upon the individual himself. If he make right

use of what the Creator has given him and live according to the laws of God

and nature he is fulfilling his allotted place in the universal scheme of

creation, in other words, when he does his best, he is living up to the

standard of a useful manhood.

Now in order to do his best a man of ordinary intelligence and education

should be able to express himself correctly both in speaking and writing,

that is, he should be able to convey his thoughts in an intelligent

manner which the simplest can understand. The manner in which a speaker

or writer conveys his thoughts is known as his Style. In other words

Style may be defined as the peculiar manner in which a man expresses

his conceptions through the medium of language. It depends upon the

choice of words and their arrangement to convey a meaning. Scarcely any

two writers have exactly the same style, that is to say, express their

ideas after the same peculiar form, just as no two mortals are fashioned

by nature in the same mould, so that one is an exact counterpart of the


Just as men differ in the accent and tones of their voices, so do they

differ in the construction of their language.

Two reporters sent out on the same mission, say to report a fire, will

verbally differ in their accounts though materially both descriptions

will be the same as far as the leading facts are concerned. One will

express himself in a style different from the other.

If you are asked to describe the dancing of a red-haired lady at the last

charity ball you can either say--"The ruby Circe, with the Titian locks

glowing like the oriflamme which surrounds the golden god of day as he

sinks to rest amid the crimson glory of the burnished West, gave a divine

exhibition of the Terpsichorean art which thrilled the souls of the

multitude" or, you can simply say--"The red-haired lady danced very well

and pleased the audience."

The former is a specimen of the ultra florid or bombastic style which may

be said to depend upon the pomposity of verbosity for its effect, the

latter is a specimen of simple natural Style. Needless to say it is to

be preferred. The other should be avoided. It stamps the writer as a

person of shallowness, ignorance and inexperience. It has been eliminated

from the newspapers. Even the most flatulent of yellow sheets no longer

tolerate it in their columns. Affectation and pedantry in style are now

universally condemned.

It is the duty of every speaker and writer to labor after a pleasing

style. It gains him an entrance where he would otherwise be debarred.

Often the interest of a subject depends as much on the way it is

presented as on the subject itself. One writer will make it attractive,

another repulsive. For instance take a passage in history. Treated by one

historian it is like a desiccated mummy, dry, dull, disgusting, while

under the spell of another it is, as it were, galvanized into a virile

living thing which not only pleases but captivates the reader.

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