Popular Science Monthly/Volume 47/August 1895/Professional Institutions IV
|←Obituary Notes|| Popular Science Monthly Volume 47 August 1895 (1895)
Professional Institutions IV
By Herbert Spencer
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IV. — ORATOR AND POET, ACTOR AND DRAMATIST.
By HERBERT SPENCER.
THINGS which during evolution become distinct were of course originally mingled: the process of evolution implies this. Already we have seen that in the triumphal reception of the conqueror, originally spontaneous and rude but in course of time becoming an established ceremonial elaborated into definite forms, there were germs of various arts and the professors of them. With the beginnings of dancing and music just described, were joined the beginnings of oratory, poetry, acting and the drama; here, for convenience, to be treated of separately. All of them manifestations of exalted emotion, at first miscellaneous and confused in their display, they only after many repetitions became regularized and parted out among different persons.
With the shouts of applause greeting David and Saul, came, from the mouths of some, proclamations of their great deeds; as, by Miriam, there had been proclamation of Yahveh's victory over the Egyptians. Such proclamations, at first brief and simple, admit of development into long and laudatory speeches; and, with utterance of these, begins the orator. Then among orators occasionally arises one more fluent and emotional than ordinary, whose oration, abounding in picturesque phrases and figures of speech, grows from time to time rhythmical, and hence the poet. The laudations, comparatively simple in presence of the living ruler, and afterward elaborated in the supposed presence of the apotheosized ruler, are, in the last case, sometimes accompanied by mimetic representations of his achievements. Among children, everywhere much given to dramatizing the doings of adults, we 434 THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.
may see that some one of a group, assuming the character of a personage heard about or read about, imitates his actions, espe- cially of a destructive kind ; and naturally therefore, in days when feelings were less restrained than now, adults fell into the same habit of representing the deeds of the hero they celebrated. The orator or poet joined with his speech or song the appropriate ac- tions, or else these were simultaneously given by some other cele- brant. And then, when further developments brought represen- tations of more complex incidents, in which the victories of the hero and his companions over enemies were shown, the leading actor, having to direct the doings of subordinates, became a dramatist.
From this sketch of incipient stages based on established facts, but partly hypothetical, let us pass to the justifying evidence, supplied by uncivilized races and by early civilized races.
If we take first the usages of peoples among whom the musical faculty is not much developed we meet with the lauding official in his simplest form the orator. Says Erskine of the Fijians, each tribe has its " orator, to make orations on occasions of ceremony, or to assist the priest and chief in exciting the courage of the people before going to battle " : the encouragement being doubt- less in large measure eulogy of the chief's past deeds and asser- tions of his coming prowess. So is it among the New Cale- donians.
In Tanna "every village has its orators. In public harangues these men chant their speeches, and walk about in peripatetic fashion, from the circumference into the center of the marum [forum], laying off their sen- tences at the same time with the nourish of a club : [a dramatic accom- paniment.]
And, according to Ellis, the Tahitians furnish like facts. Of their " orators of battle " he says
" The principal object of these Rautis was, to animate the troops by re- counting the deeds of their forefathers, the fame of their tribe or island, the martial powers of their favoring gods, 1 ' etc.
The Negro races have commonly large endowments of musical faculty. Among them, as we have seen, laudatory orations as- sume a musical form ; and, in doing so, necessarily become meas- ured. For while spoken utterances may be, and usually are, irregular utterances which, being musical, include the element of time, are thereby in some degree regularized. On reading that among the Marutse, those who " screech out the king's praises " do so to a muffled accompaniment of their instruments," we must infer that, as the sounds of their instruments must have some rhythmical order, so too must their words. Similarly the Mon- butto ballad- singers, whose function it is to glorify the king, must fall into versified expression of their eulogies. The " troop of
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laureates or bards " kept at the Dahoman court, can not utter their praises in chorus without having these praises rhythmically arranged. So, too, in Ashanti and among the Mandingos, the laudations shouted before their chief men, having assumed the form of songs, must have verged into speech more measured than usual. Other uncivilized peoples show us the official orator and poet giving to his applause a musical form which must, by impli- cation, be rhythmical. Atkinson says :
The Sultan ordered his poet to sing for us. The man obeyed, and chanted forth songs, describing the prowess and successful plundering expeditions of my host and his ancestors, which called forth thunders of applause from the tribe."
Among these African peoples, however, and the nomadic peoples of Asia just named, eulogies of the living ruler, whether or not with rhythmical words and musical utterance, are but little, or not at all, accompanied by eulogies of the apotheosized ruler, hav- ing a kindred form but with priests in place of courtiers. Why is this ? There appear to be two reasons, of which perhaps one is primary and the other secondary. We have seen that among the Negro peoples in general, ideas about life after death, where they exist, are undeveloped. The notion is that the double of the dead man does not long remain extant : when there are no longer any dreams about him he is supposed to have perished finally. Con- sequently, propitiation of his ghost does not grow into a cult, as where there has arisen the notion that he is immortal. And, then, possibly because of this, African kingdoms are but temporary. It is remarked that from time to time there arises some powerful chief who conquers and consolidates neighboring tribes and so forms a kingdom ; but that after a generation or two this ordi- narily dissolves again. We have seen how powerful an aid to con- solidation and permanence is the supposed supernatural power of a deceased ruler ; and hence it appears not improbable that the lack of this belief in an immortal god, and consequent lack of the established worship of one, is a chief cause of the transitory nature of the African monarchies.
This supposition harmonizes with the facts presented to us by ancient civilized societies, in which, along with praises of the living ruler, there went more elaborate praises of the dead and deified ruler.
Egypt furnishes instances of poetic laudations of both. Pre- ceding a eulogy of Seti I, it is written :
" The priests, the great ones, and the most distinguished men of South and North Egypt have arrived to praise the divine benefactor on his return from the land of Ruthen." Then follows a song " in praise of the king and in glorification of his fame."
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So too Rameses II is glorified in "the heroic poem of the priest Pentaur." In the eighteenth dynasty we see the two functions united.
An unknown poet, out of the number of the holy fathers, felt himself inspired to sing in measured words the glory of the king [Thutmes III], and the might and grandeur of the god Amon." And then we have the acts, wholly priestly, of "the nobleman who bore the dignity of 'prophet of the Pyramid of Pharaoh.' This officer's duty was to praise the memory of the deceased king, and to devote the god-like image of the sovereign to enduring remem- brance."
Still better and more abundant evidence is furnished by ac- counts of the early Greeks. The incipient poet, as eulogizer of the god, is priestly in his character and at first is an official priest. Concerning the Greeks of rude times Muir writes " Hence, in their traditions, the character of poet is usually found to combine those of musiciau, priest, prophet, and sage ;" and he adds that The mythical poet Olen " ranks as the earliest and most illustrious priest and poet of the Delian Apollo . . . Bceo, a celebrated priestess of that sanc- tuary [the Delphic], pronounces him ... to be, not only the most antient of Apollo's prophets, but of all poets."
We are told by Mahaffy that " the poems attributed to these men [poets prior to Homer] . . . were all strictly religious." "The hexameter verse was commonly attributed to the Delphic priests, who were said to have invented and used it in oracles. In other words, it was early used in religious poetry . . . There is no doubt that the priests did compose such works [long poems] for the purpose of teaching the attributes and adventures of the gods. Thus epic poetry [was at first] purely reli- gious . . . Homer and Hesiod represent the close of a long epoch. " And that their poetry arose by differentiation from sacred poetry, is implied in his further remark that in Homer's time, " the wars and adventures, and passions of men, had become the center of in- terest among the poets." This partially secularized poetry at a later date became further secularized, while it became further dif- ferentiated from music. The hymn of the primitive priest-poet was uttered to the accompaniment of his four-stringed lyre, in a voice more sonorous than ordinary speech not in song, as we understand it, but in recitative ; and, as Dr. Monro argues, a vague recitative a recitative akin to the intoning of the liturgy by our own priests, and to the exalted utterance spontaneously fallen into under religious excitement.* But in course of time, this quasi-
- In his learned work, The Modes of Ancient Greek Music, he writes : " Several indica-
tions combine to make it probable that singing and speaking were not so widely separated from each other in Greek as in the modern languages with which we are most familiar." (p. 113) . . .
..." For if the language even in its colloquial form had qualities of rhythm and into- nation which gave it this peculiar half-musical character, so that singing and speaking were
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musical utterance of hexameters was dropped by a certain derived secular class, the Rhapsodists. These, who recited at courts " the books [of Homer] separately, some one, some the other, at the feasts or public solemnities of the Greek cities," and who them- selves sometimes composed "dedicatory prologues or epilogues in honor of the deities with whose festivals such public per- formances were connected," and became in so far themselves poets, were distinguished from the early poets by their non- musical speech.
"While the latter sang, solely or chiefly, bis own compositions to the accompaniment of his lyre, the rhapsodist, bearing a laurel branch or wand as his badge of office, rehearsed, without musical accompaniment, the poems of others: " [sometimes, as above said, joined with his own]. Thus there simultaneously arose a class of secular poets and a divergence of poetry from song.
A parallel genesis occurred among the Romans. Though its sequences were broken, its beginning was the same. Says Grimm
. . . "Poetry borders so closely on divination, the Roman vates is alike songster and soothsayer, and soothsaying was certainly a priestly function." Congruous with this is the statement that
"Roman religion was a ceremonial for the priests, not for the people; and its poetry was merely formulae in verse, and soared no higher than the semi-barbarous ejaculations of the Salian priests or the Arvolian brother- hood."
The more elaborated forms of religious ceremony appear to have been imported from subjugated countries the sacred games from Etruria, and other observances from Greece. Hence the Romans being the conquerors, it seems to have resulted that the arts, and among others the art of poetry, brought with them by the cap- tives, were for a long period lightly thought of by their captors. Having no commission from the gods, the professors of it were treated with contempt and their function entirely secularized. So that, as Mommsen writes :
" The poet or, as he was at this time called, the " writer," the actor and the composer, not only belonged still, as formerly, to the despised class of la- borers for hire, but were still, as formerly, placed in the most marked way under the ban of public opinion, and subjected to police mahreatment." With like implications in a later chapter he adds : " None of those who in this age appeared as poets before the public, as we have already said, can be shown to have been noble, and not only so, but none can be shown to have been natives of Latium proper."
more closely akin than they ever are in our experience, we may expect to find that music was influenced in some measure by this state of things." (p. 119).
Thus it is clear that the primitive priest-poet of the Greeks was simply an emotionally- excited orator, whose speech diverged from the common speech by becoming more measured and more intoned.
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More coherent evidence concerning the differentiation of the poet from the priest is hardly to be expected where, instead of a con- tinuous evolution of one society, we have an agglomeration of societies, in which the conquering society from the beginning incorporated other ideas and usages with its own.
When, from Southern Europe of early days, we turn to North- ern Europe, we meet, in Scandinavia, with evidence of a connec- tion between the primitive poet and the medicine-man. Speaking of the " diviners, both male and female, honored with the name of prophets," who were believed to have power to force the ghosts of the "dead to tell them what would happen," Mallet says that " poetry was often employed for the like absurd purposes : " these same skalds or bards were supposed to achieve this end " by force of certain songs which they knew how to compose." At the same time that these poets and musicians of the ancient northern na- tions invoked the spirits of the departed in verses which most likely lauded them, they " were considered as necessary appendages to royalty, and even the inferior chieftains had their poets." The Celts had kindred functionaries, whose actions were evidently similar to those of the Greek priest-poets. Says Pelloutier, basing his statement on Strabo, Lucan, and others :
"Les Bardes, qui faisoient [des] Hymnes, etoient Poetes et Musiciens; ils composoient les paroles, et l'air sur lequel on les chantoit." The use of the word "hymnes" apparently implying that their songs had something of a sacred character. That the connection between poet and priest survived, or was re-established, after paganism had been replaced by Christianity, there is good evi- dence. In the words of Mills
" Every page of early European history attests the sacred consideration of the minstrel ; " his peculiar dress " was fashioned like a sacerdotal robe." And Fauriel asserts that
" Almost all the most celebrated troubadours died in the cloister and under the monk's habit."
But it seems a probable inference that after Christianity had sub- jugated paganism, the priest-poet of the pagans, who originally lauded now the living chief and now the deified chief, gradually ceased to have the latter function and became eventually the ruler's laureate. "We read that
" A joculator, or bard, was an officer belonging to the court of William the Conqueror."
" A poet seems to have been a stated officer in the royal retinue when the king went to war."
And among ourselves such official laureateship still survives, or is but just dying.
While the eulogizer of the visible ruler thus became a court- functionary, the eulogizers of the invisible ruler no longer an
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indigenous deity, but one of foreign origin came to be bis priests ; and in tbat capacity praised biin, sometimes in poetical, sometimes in oratorical, form. Throughout Christendom from early times down to ours, religious services have emphasized in various pro- portions the different attributes of the deity now chiefly his anger and revenge, now chiefly his goodness, love, and mercy ; but they have united in ceaseless exaltation of his power; and the varieties of oral admiration, of invocation, of devotion, have been partly in prose and partly in verse. All along the Church- service has had for its subject-matter this or that part of the divine story, and all along it has embodied its ideas and feelings in a semi-rhythmical liturgy, in hymns, in the orations which we call sermons : each of them having in one way or other the laudatory character. So that the Christian priest has throughout stood in substantially the same relation to the being worshiped, as did the pagan priest, and has perpetually used kindred vehicles of ex- pression.
While the Christian priest has been officially one who repeated the laudations already elaborated and established, he has also been to a considerable extent an originator, alike of orations and poems. Limiting ourselves to our own country, and passing over the ancient bards, such as Taliesin and Merlin, whose verses were in praise of living and dead pagan heroes, and coming to the poets of the new religion, we see that the first of them Cssdmon, a con- vert who became inmate of a monastery, rendered in metrical form the story of creation and sundry other sacred stories a variously elaborated eulogy of the deity. The next poet named is Aldhelm, a monk. The clerical Bede again, known mainly by other achievements, was a poet, too ; as was likewise bishop Cyne- wulf. For a long time after, the men mentioned as writers of verse were ecclesiastics ; as was Henry of Huntingdon, a prior ; Geraldus Cambrensis, archdeacon ; Layamon, priest ; and Nicholas of Guildford. Not until Edward Ill's reign do we find mention of a secular song-writer Minot ; and then we come to our first great poet, Chaucer, who, whether or not " of Cambridge, clerk," as is suspected, became court-poet and occupied himself mainly with secular poetry. After this the differentiation of the secular verse- writer from the sacred verse-writer became more marked, as we see in the case of Gower ; but still, while the subject-matter of the poems became more secularized, as with Langland and with Barbour, the ecclesiastical connection remained dominant. Lydgate was priest, orator and poet ; Occleve, poet and civil serv- ant ; William of Massington, proctor and poet ; Juliana Berners, prioress and secular poetess ; Henryson, schoolmaster and poet ; Skelton, priest and poet laureate ; Dunbar, prior and secular poet ; Douglas, rector and court-poet ; Barclay, priest and poet ; Hawes,
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priest and poet; and so on. It should be added that one of the functions of the clergyman has been the writing of laudatory hymns hymns composed now by ordained ecclesiastics, now by dissenting ministers. These facts, joined with facts of recent times, make it clear that as in pagan societies, so in Christian societies, the priest-poet, appointed eulogizer of the deity he serves, is the first poet; and that the poets we distinguish as secular have gradually arisen by differentiation from him.
Along with the divergence of secular poets from sacred poets there have arisen divergences within the assemblage of secular poets themselves. There have come the mainly epic, as Milton ; the didactic, as Pope ; the satiric, as Butler ; the descriptive, as Wordsworth ; the comic, as Hood.
From those official praisers of the hero or god whose lauda- tions take the form of speech, non-rhythmical or rhythmical, we pass to those whose laudations take the form of mimetic actions who express the triumphs of the deified ruler by imitations of his deeds. United as the two originally were, they diverge and develop along their respective lines.
Existing savages yield illustrations of the primitive union of vocal laudation and mimetic laudation. Concerning the Point Barrow Eskimo we read :
" The most important festivals are apparently semi-religious in character and partake strongly of the nature of dramatic representations. . . . All festivals are accompanied by singing 1 , drumming', and daucing."
More detailed evidence is supplied by an official account of the Navajo Indians, from which here are relevant passages :
" Hasjelti Dailjis, in the Navajo tongue, signifies the dance of Hasjelti, who is the chief or rather the most important and conspicuous of the gods. The word dance does not well designate the ceremonies, as they are in gen- eral more histrionic than saltatory. . . . The personation of the various gods and their attendants and the acted drama of their mythical adventures and displayed powers exhibit features of peculiar interest. . . . Yet, from what is known of isolated and fragmentary parts of the dramatized myths, it is to he inferred that every one of the strictly regulated and prescribed actions has or has had a special significance, and it is obvious that they are all maintained with strict religious scrupulosity."
And it is added that each of these observances " clearly offers a bribe or proposes the terms of a bargain to the divinities."
Noting next the evidence furnished by Ancient India, we are led to infer that there, as elsewhere, the triumphal reception of a conqueror was the observance from which sprang the dramatic art, along with the arts we have thus far contemplated. Weber writes
" Next to the epic, as the second phase in the development of Sanskrit poetry, comes the Drama. The name for it is Ndtaka, and the player is
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styled Nata, literally 'dancer.' Etymology thus points to the fact that the drama has developed out of dancing", which was probably accompanied, at first with music and song only, but in course of time also with pantomimic representations, processions, and dialogue."
And though, himself offering another interpretation, he quotes Lassen to the effect that
" The Indian drama, after having acquitted itself brilliantly in the most varied fields notably too as a drama of civil life finally reverted in its closing phases to essentially the same class of subjects with which it had started to representations from the story of the gods."
Greek history yields various facts of like meaning. In Spar- ta
"The singing chorus danoed around it ['the sacrifice . . . burning on the altar'] in the customary ring ; while others represented the subject of the song by mimic gesture."
That the drama had a religious origin is shown by the fact that it continued always to have a religious character. Says Moulton " the performance of every drama was regarded by the ancients as an act of worship to Dionysus." And to like effect is the state- ment of Mahaffy that " the old Greek went to the theater to honor and serve his god." The dramatic element of religious ceremonies was at first mingled with the other elements, as is implied by Grote, who speaks of the importance of the united religious celebrants
" in the ' ancient ' world, and especially in the earlier periods of its career the bards and rhapsodes for the epic, the singers for the lyric, the actors and singers jointly with the dancers for the chorus and drama. The lyric and dramatic poets taught with their own lips the delivery of their com- positions."
The process of differentiation by which the drama arose is well shown by the following extracts from Moulton :
" Only one of these Ballad-Dances was destined to develop into drama. This was the Dithyramb, the dance used in the festival worship of the god Dionysus.
"... the ' mysteries ' of ancient religion were mystic dramas in which the divine story was conveyed."
" The choi*us started from the altar in the center of the orchestra, and their evolutions took them to the right. This would constitute a Strophe, whereupon (as the word 'Strophe' implies) they turned round and in the Antistrophe worked their way back to the altar again."
In lyric tragedy " the Chorus appears as Satyrs in honor of Dionysus, to whose glory the legend is a tribute ; they maintain throughout the com- bination of chant, music, and dance."
"The work of Thespis was to introduce an 'actor,' separate altogether from the chorus."
That along with differentiation of the drama from other social products there went differentiation of the dramatist and the actor from other persons and from one another, may fairly be inferred, however little able we may be to trace the process. Already, by
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the above extract from Grote, we are shown that a leading actor gave oral directions to subordinate actors ; and in doing this he assumed to some extent the character of dramatist. Before the rise of a written literature no greater distinction could be made ; but after written literature arose, the dramatist proper became possible. Still, it is to be observed that in the productions of the great dramatic writers of Greece, the original relations continued to be shown. As Moulton remarks :
" Tragedy never ceased to be a solemn religious and national festival, celebrated in a building which was regarded as the temple of Dionysus, whose altar was the most prominent object in the orchestra." And the subject-matter continued in late days as in early days to be, in chief measure, the doings of the gods. An illustration is furnished by Mahaff y, who says :
"We hear in the days of the Ptolemies about 250 B. c, of a regular symphony at a Delphic feast, in which the contest of Apollo and the Python was represented in fiye movements with the aid of flutes (or rather clarinettes, avXoi), harps, and fifes without singing or libretto." Clearly this incident, which while mainly showing the develop- ment of instrumental music, shows also the kind of theme chosen. But when we come to the comedies of Aristophanes we see a com- plete secularization.
Partly because, as pointed out above in following the genesis of the poet, so much of Roman civilization was not indigenous but foreign, and partly because Roman life, entirely militant, led to a contempt for all non-militant occupations (as happens every- where) ; the rise of the dramatist in Rome is indefinite. Still we find indications akin to the foregoing. Duruy, in agreement with Guhl and Koner, writes that
In 36.4 during a pestilence the Romans applied to the Etruscans who " replied that the gods would be satisfied if they were honored by scenic games, and, that the Romans might be able to celebrate these games, they sent them at the same time actors, who executed religious dances to the sound of the flute . . . the pestilence then ended." And he goes on to say that
"Young Romans learnt the dances introduced from Etruria, and marked the rhythm of them by songs, often improvised, which ended by being accompanied with action. Roman comedy was discovered." In Rome as in Greece an idea of sacredness long attached to the drama. "'Varo,' says St. Augustine, 'ranks theatrical things with things divine.'" This conception of sacredness, however, was congruous with their conceptions of the gods, and widely different from sacredness as understood by us.
' The subjects of the pantomime were taken from the myths of gods and heroes, the actor having to represent male and female characters by turns, while a choir, accompanied by flute-players, sang the corresponding can- ticum."
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"Sometimes mythological scenes were performed in the arena with cruel accuracy. Condemned criminals had to mount the pyre like Her- cules, or to give their hand to the flames like Mucius Scaevola, or to be cru- cified like Laureolus the robber; others were torn by bears, in imitation of the fate of Orpheus."
Having usually been an alien and possessing no odor of sanctity derived from his traditional religious function,
The actor u was ranked with slaves and barbarians ... he generally was a slave or freedman, or a native of some country where his profession was more esteemed, such as the Greek colonies and the East generally."
Little as one might have expected it, we find that the pagan genesis of the drama was paralleled by the Christian regenesis of it in mediseval Europe. It commenced, as in India, Greece, and Rome, with representations of sacred subjects by priestly actors. Incidents in the life of the god were dramatically repeated in edifices devoted to his worship.
u The circumstance that the ritual was carried on in Latin naturally led to its being supplemented on pai'ticular occasions with sacred scenes or lessons acted to the ignorant."
" Thus the raison d'etre of the mysteries and miracle plays was to act stories from Scripture or the lives of Saints, or embodying central doctrines such as the incarnation, for the benefit of a populace unable to read for themselves."
But there are confused evidences and conflicting opinions respect- ing dramatic representations in early Christian days secular and sacred origins appearing to be mingled. We read that " some- times when a sufficient number of clerical actors were not to be procured, the churchwardens . . . caused the plays to be acted by secular players." And in the same work we also read that " com- plaint [to Richard II] is made against the secular actors, because they took upon themselves to act plays composed from scripture history, to the great prejudice of the clergy." But in another passage the writer, Strutt, says that these acted mysteries " differed greatly from the secular plays and interludes which were acted by strolling companies, composed of minstrels, jugglers, tumblers, dancers, bourdours or jesters . . . these pastimes are of higher an- tiquity than the ecclesiastical plays." Not improbably such com- panies may have survived from pagan times, in which their representations formed part of the pagan worship: losing their original meanings, as did the songs of the minstrels. This view seems congruous with the opinion that the secular drama did not arise by direct descent from the mystery-plays, but that, influ- enced by the familiarity of its writers both with them and with the popular exhibitions, it took its definite form mainly by sug- gestion of the classic drama : a supposition favored by the fact that in various Elizabethan plays a chorus is introduced. Be this
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as it may, however, the general implication remains the same. There arose in Christendom, as in Greece, a sacred drama per- formed by priests and representing incidents in the sacred story ; and if our secular drama did not directly descend from this Chris- tian religious drama, then it indirectly descended from the original pagan religious drama.
Along with the rise of the secular drama have arisen minor differentiations. The separation between actor and dramatist, though still not complete, has become greater; most dramatic authors are not actors. And then the dramatic authors are now distinguished into those known as producers chiefly of tragedy, comedy, melodrama, farce, burlesque.
We meet here with no exception to the general law that segre- gation and consolidation are parts of the evolutionary process. Beginning with Greece we trace the tendency even among the poets. Curtius remarks that "poetry like the other arts was first cultivated in circles limited after the fashion of guilds." And the religious character of these guilds is shown by the further state- ment that " schools of poets came to form themselves which were . . . intimately connected with the sanctuary."
Naturally the process readily took place with those occupied in combined representations ; for they, as a matter of necessity, ex- isted as companies. But there early arose more definite unions among them. Mahaffy says, concerning the Greeks, that
" Inscriptions reveal to us the existence of guilds of professionals who went about Greece to these local feasts, and performed for very high pay." And he further states that
The actors' " corporation included a priest (of Dionysus) at the head, who still remained a performer ; a treasurer ; dramatic poets of new tragedies and comedies and odes ; principal actors of both tragedy and comedy . . . and musicians of various kinds.
From Rome, for reasons already indicated, we do not get much evidence. Still there is some.
The authorities . . . out of regard for the Greek Andronikos " conceded to the guild of poets and actors a place for their common worship in the temple of Minerva."
Nor do modern days fail to furnish a few, though not many, illus- trations of the integrating tendency. A slight organization is given by the Actors' Benevolent Fund. The dramatic writers have an agency for collecting the amounts due to them for the performance of their pieces, and are to that extent combined. And then we have a special newspaper, The Era, which forms a medium for communication, by advertisements, between all kinds of stage-performers and those who wish to engage them, as well as an organ for representing the interests of the stage and the semi-dramatic music-hall.
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[After the above chapter was written my attention was drawn to a passage in the late Prof. Henry Morley's work, A First Sketch of English Literature (p. 209), which in short space yields verifica- tion for the various leading propositions contained in it and in the preceding chapter :
" Our English ballads are akin to those which also among the Scandina- vians became a familiar social amusement of the people. They were recited by one of a company with animation and with varying expression, while the rest kept time, often with joined hands forming a circle, advancing, retiring, balancing, sometimes remaining still, and, by various movements and gestures, followed changes of emotion in the story. Not only in Spain did the people keep time by dance movement to the measure of the ballad, for even to this day one may see, in the Faroe Islands, how winter evenings of the North were cheered with ballad recitations, during which, according to the old northern fashion, gestures and movements of the listeners ex- pressed emotions of the story as the people danced to their old ballads and songs."
Here, then, as in the Hebrew triumphal reception of the living hero, and the Greek worship of the apotheosized hero, we see a union of music and the dance, and with them a union of rhyth- mical speech with some dramatic representation of the incidents described, and of the emotions caused by the description. We see that everywhere there has tended to bud out afresh the combined manifestations of exalted feeling from which these various arts originate. Another fact is forced upon our attention. We are shown that in all cases, while there arises some one of a group who becomes singer or reciter, the rest assume the character of chorus. This segregation, which characterized the religious wor- ship of the Greeks and characterized also their dramatic repre- sentations, is not only displayed in later times by the cathedral choir, which shares the service with the solo-singers, and by the operatic chorus which does the like on the stage, but is also displayed by the choral accompanists described in the above passage, and even now survives among us as the chorus which habitually winds up the successive verses of a convivial song in a public house.]
��Describing a lecture by Dean Buckland on Kent's Cavern, Sir Henry Ackland says that the lecturer "paced like a Franciscan preacher up and clown behind a long show-case, up two steps, in a room in the old Clarendon (at Oxford). He had in his hands a huge hyena's skull. He suddenly dashed down the steps, rushed, skull in hand, at the first undergraduate on the front bench, and shouted, 'What rules the world?' The youth, terrified, threw himself against the next back seat, and auswered not a word. He rushed then on me, pointing the hyena full iu my face: 'What rules the world?' 'Haven't an idea,' I said. 'The stomach, sir,' he said (again mounting his rostrum), 'rules the world. The great ones eat the less, and the less the lesser still.' "