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bridge, there was an upper chamber, which being | name aloud, that all the shore rang of it; and thought weak in the roof, it was supported by a that Hylas from within the water answered his pillar of iron of the bigness of one's arm in the midst of the chamber; which if you had struck, it would make a little flat noise in the room where it was struck, but it would make a great bomb in the chamber beneath.
152. The sound which is made by buckets in a well, when they touch upon the water, or when they strike upon the side of the well, or when two buckets dash the one against the other, these sounds are deeper and fuller than if the like percussion were made in the open air. The cause is the penning and enclosure of the air in the concave of the well.
153. Barrels placed in a room under the floor of a chamber make all noises in the same chamber more full and resounding.
So that there be five ways, in general, of majoration of sounds: enclosure simple; enclosure with dilatation; communication; reflection concurrent; and approach to the sensory.
master, but, that which is to the present purpose, with so small and exile a voice, as Hercules thought he had been three miles off, when the fountain, indeed, was fast by.
156. In lutes and instruments of strings, if you stop a string high, whereby it hath less scope to tremble, the sound is more treble, but yet more dead.
157. Take two saucers, and strike the edge of the one against the bottom of the other, within a pail of water; and you shall find, that as you put the saucers lower and lower, the sound groweth more flat; even while part of the saucer is above the water; but that flatness of sound is joined with a harshness of sound; which no doubt is caused by the inequality of the sound which cometh from the part of the saucer under water, and from the part above. But when the saucer is wholly under water, the sound becometh more clear, but far more low, and as if the sound came from afar off.
158. A soft body dampeth the sound much more than a hard; as if a bell hath cloth or silk wrapped about it, it deadeth the sound more than if it were wood. And therefore in clericals the keys are lined; and in colleges they use to line
154. For exility of the voice or other sounds; it is certain that the voice doth pass through solid and hard bodies if they be not too thick: and through water, which is likewise a very close body, and such a one as letteth not in air. But then the voice, or other sound, is reduced by such passage to a great weakness or exility. If there-tablemen. fore you stop the holes of a hawk's bell, it will make no ring, but a flat noise or rattle. And so doth the "aetites" or eagle-stone, which hath a little stone within it.
155. And as for water, it is a certain trial: let a man go into a bath, and take a pail, and turn the bottom upwards, and carry the mouth of it even, down to the level of the water, and so press it down under the water some handful and a half, still keeping it even that it may not tilt on either side, and so the air get out: then let him that is in the bath dive with his head so far under water, as he may put his head into the pail, and there will come as much air bubbling forth as will make room for his head. Then let him speak, and any that shall stand without shall hear his voice plainly; but yet made extreme sharp and exile, like the voice of puppets: but yet the articulate sounds of the words will not be confounded. Note, that it may be much more handsomely done, if the pail be put over the man's head above the water, and then he cower down, and the pail be pressed down with him. Note, that a man must kneel or sit, that he may be lower than the water. A man would think that the Sicilian poet had knowledge of this experiment; for he said, that Hercules's page, Hylas, went with a water-pot to fill it at a pleasant fountain that was near the shore, and that the nymph of the fountain fell in love with the boy, and pulled him under water, keeping him alive; and that Hercules missing his page, called him by his
159. Trial was made in a recorder after these several manners. The bottom of it was set against the palm of the hand; stopped with wax round about; set against a damask cushion; thrust into sand; into ashes; into water, half an inch under the water; close to the bottom of a silver basin; and still the tone remained: but the bottom of it was set against a woollen carpet; a lining of plush; a lock of wool, though loosely put in; against snow; and the sound of it was quite deaded, and but breath.
160. Iron hot produceth not so full a sound as when it is cold, for while it is hot, it appeareth to be more soft and less resounding. Solikewise warm water, when it falleth, maketh not so full a sound as cold, and I conceive it is softer, and nearer the nature of oil, for it is more slippery, as may be perceived in that it scoureth better.
161. Let there be a recorder made with two, fipples, at each end one: the trunk of it of the length of two recorders, and the holes answerable towards each end, and let two play the same lesson upon it as in unison; and let it be noted whether the sound be confounded, or amplified, or dulled. So likewise let a cross be made of two trunks, throughout, hollow, and let two speak, or sing, the one longways, the other traverse; and let two hear at the opposite ends, and note whether the sound be confounded, amplified, or dulled. Which two instances will also give light to the mixture of sounds, whereof we shall speak hereafter.
162. A bellows blown in at the hole of a drum, more treble and more base, according unto the and the drum then strucken, maketh the sound concave on the inside, though the percussion be a little flatter, but no other apparent alteration. only on the outside. The cause is manifest: partly for that it hindereth the issue of the sound, and partly for that it maketh the air, being blown together, less movable.
167. When the sound is created between the blast of the mouth and the air of the pipe, it hath nevertheless some communication with the matter of the sides of the pipe, and the spirits in them contained; for in a pipe, or trumpet, of wood, and Experiments in consort touching the loudness or soft-brass, the sound will be diverse; so if the pipe
ness of sounds, and their carriage at longer or shorter distance.
163. The loudness and softness of sounds is a thing distinct from the magnitude and exility of sounds; for a base string, though softly strucken, giveth the greater sound; but a treble string, if hard strucken, will be heard much farther off. And the cause is, for that the base string striketh more air, and the treble less air, but with a sharper percussion.
be covered with cloth or silk: it will give a diverse sound from that it would do of itself; so if the pipe be a little wet on the inside, it will make a differing sound from the same pipe dry.
168. That sound made within water doth communicate better with a hard body through water, than made in air it doth with air. "Vide experimentum 134."
Experiments in consort touching equality and inequality of sounds.
164. It is therefore the strength of the percussion, that is a principal cause of the loudness or We have spoken before, in the inquisition softness of sounds; as in knocking harder or touching music, of musical sounds, whereunto softer, winding of a horn stronger or weaker, ring- there may be a concord or discord in two parts; ing of a hand-bell harder or softer, &c. And the which sounds we call tones; and likewise of imstrength of this percussion consisteth as much or musical sounds; and have given the cause, that more in the hardness of the body percussed, as the tone proceedeth of equality, and the other of in the force of the body percussing for if you inequality. And we have also expressed there, strike against a cloth, it will give a less sound, what are the equal bodies that give tones, and if against wood, a greater, if against metal yet a what are the unequal that give none. But now greater; and in metals, if you strike against gold, we shall speak of such inequality of sounds as which is the more pliant, it giveth the flatter proceedeth not from the nature of the bodies themsound; if against silver or brass, the more ring-selves, but as accidental; either from the roughing sound. As for air, where it is strongly pent, it matcheth a hard body. And therefore we see in discharging of a piece, what a great noise it maketh. We see also, that the charge with bullet, or with paper wet and hard stopped, or with powder alone, rammed in hard, maketh no great difference in the loudness of the report.
165. The sharpness or quickness of the percussion is great cause of the loudness, as well as the strength; as in a whip or wand, if you strike the air with it; the sharper and quicker you strike it, the louder sound it giveth. And in playing upon the lute or virginals, the quick stroke or touch is a great life to the sound. The cause is, for that the quick striking cutteth the air speedily; whereas the soft striking doth rather beat than cut.
ness or obliquity of the passage, or from the doubling of the percutient, or from the trepidation of the motion.
169. A bell, if it have a rift in it, whereby the sound hath not a clear passage, giveth a hoarse and jarring sound: so the voice of man, when by cold taken the weasond groweth rugged, and, as we call it, furred, becometh hoarse. And in these two instances the sounds are ingrate, because they are merely unequal: but if they be unequal in equality, then the sound is grateful but purling.
170. All instruments that have either returns, as trumpets; or flexions, as cornets; or are drawn up, and put from, as sackbuts; have a purling sound; but the recorder, or flute, that have none of these inequalities, give a clear sound. Nevertheless, the recorder itself, or pipe, moistened a
Experiments in consort touching the communication little in the inside, soundeth more solemnly, and
The communication of sounds, as in bellies of lutes, empty vessels, &c., hath been touched "obiter," in the majoration of sounds; but it is fit also to make a title of it apart.
166. The experiment for greatest demonstration of communication of sounds, is the chiming of bells; where, if you strike with a hammer upon the upper part, and then upon the midst, and then upon the lower, you shall find the sound to be
with a little purling or hissing. Again, a wreathed string, such as are in the base strings of bandoras, giveth also a purling sound.
171. But a lutestring, if it be merely unequal in its parts, giveth a harsh and untunable sound: which strings we call false, being bigger in one place than in other; and therefore wire strings are never false. We see also, that when we try a false lutestring, we use to extend it hard between the fingers, and to fillip it; and if it giveth a
double species, it is true; but if it giveth a treble, | Experiments in consort touching the more treble or more, it is false.
172. Waters, in the noise they make as they run, represent to the ear a trembling noise; and in regals, where they have a pipe they call the nightingale-pipe, which containeth water, the sound hath a continual trembling: and children have also little things they call cocks, which have water in them; and when they blow or whistle in them, they yield a trembling noise; which trembling of water hath an affinity with the letter L. All which inequalities of trepidation are rather pleasant than otherwise.
173. All base notes, or very treble notes, give an asper sound; for that the base striketh more air than it can well strike equally: and the treble cutteth the air so sharp, as it returneth too swift to make the sound equal: and therefore a mean or tenor is the sweetest part.
174. We know nothing that can at pleasure make a musical or immusical sound by voluntary motion, but the voice of man and birds. The cause is, no doubt, in the weasond or windpipe, which we call "aspera arteria," which, being well extended, gathereth equality; as a bladder that is wrinkled, if it be extended, becometh smooth. The extension is always more in tones than in speech: therefore the inward voice or whisper can never give a tone. And in singing, there is, manifestly, a greater working and labour of the throat than in speaking; as appeareth in the thrusting out or drawing in of the chin, when we sing.
175. The humming of bees is an unequal buzzing, and is conceived by some of the ancients not to come forth at their mouth, but to be an inward sound; but, it may be, it is neither; but from the motion of their wings: for it is not heard but when they stir.
176. All metals quenched in water give a sibilation or hissing sound, which hath an affinity with the letter Z, notwithstanding the sound be created between the water or vapour, and the air. Seething also, if there be but small store of water in a vessel, giveth a hissing sound; but boiling in a full vessel giveth a bubbling sound, drawing somewhat near to the cocks used by children.
177. Trial would be made, whether the inequality or interchange of the medium will not produce an inequality of sound; as if three bells were made one within another, and air betwixt each; and then the uttermost bell were chimed with a hammer, how the sound would differ from a simple bell. So likewise take a plate of brass and a plank of wood, and join them close together, and knock upon one of them, and see if they do not give an unequal sound. So make two or three partitions of wood in a hogshead, with holes or knots in them; and mark the difference of their sound from the sound of a hogshead without such partitions.
and the more base tones, or musical sounds. 178. It is evident, that the percussion of the greater quantity of air causeth the baser sound; and the less quantity the more treble sound. The percussion of the greater quantity of air is produced by the greatness of the body percussing; by the latitude of the concave by which the sound passeth; and by the longitude of the same concave. Therefore we see that a base string is greater than a treble; a base pipe hath a greater bore than a treble; and in pipes, and the like, the lower the note-holes be, and the further off from the mouth of the pipe, the more base sound they yield; and the nearer the mouth, the more treble. Nay more, if you strike an entire body, as an andiron of brass, at the top, it maketh a more treble sound; and at the bottom a baser.
179. It is also evident, that the sharper or quicker percussion of air causeth the more treble sound; and the slower or heavier, the more base sound. So we see in strings; the more they are wound up and strained, and thereby give a more quick start-back, the more treble is the sound; and the slacker they are, or less wound up, the baser is the sound. And therefore, a bigger string more strained, and a lesser string less strained, may fall into the same tone.
180. Children, women, eunuchs, have more small and shrill voices than men. The reason is, not for that men have greater heat, which may make the voice stronger, for the strength of a voice or sound doth make a difference in the loudness or softness, but not in the tone, but from the dilatation of the organ; which, it is true, is likewise caused by heat. But the cause of changing the voice at the years of uberty is more obscure. It seemeth to be, for that when much of the moisture of the body, which did before irrigate the parts, is drawn down to the spermatical vessels, it leaveth the body more hot than it was; whence cometh the dilatation of the pipes: for we see plainly all effects of heats do then come on; as pilosity, more roughness of the skin, hardness of the flesh, &c.
181. The industry of the musician hath produced two other means of straining or intension of strings, besides their winding up. The one is the stopping of the string with the finger; as in the necks of lutes, viols, &c. The other is the shortness of the string, as in harps, virginals, &c. Both these have one and the same reason; for they cause the string to give a quicker start.
182. In the straining of a string, the further it is strained, the less superstraining goeth to a note; for it requireth good winding of a string before it will make any note at all: and in the stops of lutes, &c., the higher they go, the less distance is between the frets.
183. If you fill a drinking-glass with water, especially one sharp below and wide above, and
fillip upon the brim or outside; and after empty | ancients, that an empty barrel knocked upon with part of the water, and so more and more, and still the finger, giveth a diapason to the sound of the try the tone by fillipping; you shall find the tone like barrel full; but how that should be, I do not fall and be more base, as the glass is more well understand; for that the knocking of a barrel, empty. full or empty, doth scarce give any tone. 187. There is required some sensible difference Experiments in consort touching the proportion of in the proportion of creating a note, towards the
treble and base tones.
sound itself, which is passive: and that it be not too near, but at a distance. For in a recorder, the three uppermost holes yield one tone; which is a
Experiments in consort touching exterior and interior sounds.
The just and measured proportion of the air percussed, towards the baseness or trebleness of tones, is one of the greatest secrets in the con-note lower than the tone of the first three. And templation of sounds. For it discovereth the the like, no doubt, is required in the winding or true coincidence of tones into diapasons; which stopping of strings. is the return of the same sound. And so of the concords and discords between the unison and diapason, which we have touched before in the experiments of music; but think fit to resume it here as a principal part of our inquiry touching the nature of sounds. It may be found out in the proportion of the winding of strings; in the proportion of the distance of frets, and in the proportion of the concave of pipes, &c., but most commodiously in the last of these.
184. Try therefore the winding of a string once about, as soon as it is brought to that extension as will give a tone; and then of twice about, and thrice about, &c., and mark the scale or difference of the rise of the tone: whereby you shall discover, in one, two effects; both the proportion of the sound towards the dimension of the winding; and the proportion likewise of the sound towards the string, as it is more or less strained. But note that to measure this, the way will be, to take the length in a right line of the string, upon any winding about of the peg.
185. As for the stops, you are to take the number of frets; and principally the length of the line, from the first stop of the string, unto such a stop as shall produce a diapason to the former stop upon the same string.
186. But it will best, as it is said, appear in the bores of wind instruments: and therefore cause some half dozen pipes to be made, in length and all things else alike, with a single, double, and so on to a sextuple bore; and so mark what fall of tone every one giveth. But still in these three last instances, you must diligently observe, what length of string, or distance of stop, or concave of air, maketh what rise of sound. As in the last of these, which, as we said, is that which giveth the aptest demonstration, you must set down what increase of concave goeth to the making of a note higher; and what of two notes; and what of three notes; and so up to the diapason: for then the great secret of numbers and proportions will appear. It is not unlike that those that make recorders, &c., know this already for that they make them in sets: and likewise bell-founders, in fitting the tune of their bells. So that inquiry may save trial. Surely it hath been observed by one of the
There is another difference of sounds, which we will call exterior and interior. It is not soft nor loud: nor it is not base nor treble: nor it is not musical nor immusical: though it be true, that there can be no tone in an interior sound; but on the other side, in an exterior sound there may be both musical and immusical. We shall therefore enumerate them, rather than precisely distinguish them; though, to make some adumbration of what we mean, the interior is rather an impulsion or contusion of the air, than an elision or section of the same: so as the percussion of the one towards the other differeth, as a blow differeth from a cut.
188. In speech of man, the whispering, which they call "susurrus" in Latin, whether it be louder or softer, is an interior sound; but the speaking out is an exterior sound; and therefore you can never make a tone nor sing in whispering; but in speech you may: so breathing, or blowing by the mouth, bellows, or wind, though loud, is an inte rior sound; but the blowing through a pipe or concave, though soft, is an exterior. So likewise the greatest winds, if they have no coarctation, or blow not hollow, give an interior sound; the whistling or hollow wind yieldeth a singing, or exterior sound; the former being pent by some other body; the latter being pent in by its own density: and therefore we see, that when the wind bloweth hollow, it is a sign of rain. The flame, as it moveth within in itself or is blown by a bellows, giveth a murmur or interior sound.
189. There is no hard body, but struck against another hard body, will yield an exterior sound; greater or lesser: insomuch as if the percussion be over-soft, it may induce a nullity of sound; but never an interior sound; as when one treadeth so softly that he is not heard.
190. Where the air is the percutient, pent or not pent, against a hard body, it never giveth an exterior sound; as if you blow strongly with a bellows against a wall.
191. Sounds, both exterior and interior, may be made as well by suction as by emission of the breath; as in whistling or breathing.
Experiments in consort touching articulation of sounds.
|will refer them over, and place them amongst the experiments of speech. The Hebrews have been diligent in it, and have assigned which letters are labial, which dental, which guttural, &c. As for the Latins and Grecians, they have distinguished between semi-vowels and mutes; and in mutes between "mutæ tenues, mediæ," and "aspiratæ ;"
192. It is evident, and it is one of the strangest secrets in sounds, that the whole sound is not in the whole air only; but the whole sound is also in every small part of the air. So that all the curious diversity of articulate sounds, of the voice of man or birds, will enter at a small cranny incon-not amiss, but yet not diligently enough. For the fused.
special strokes and motions that create those 193. The unequal agitation of the winds and sounds, they have little inquired: as, that the the like, though they be material to the carriage letters B, P, F, M, are not expressed, but with of the sounds farther or less way; yet they do the contracting or shutting of the mouth; that the not confound the articulation of them at all, letters N and B cannot be pronounced but that within that distance that they can be heard; the letter N will turn into M; as "hecatonba " though it may be, they make them to be heard less will be "hecatomba." That M and T cannot be way than in a still as hath been partly touched. pronounced together, but P will come between; 194. Over great distance confoundeth the arti-as "emtus" is pronounced "emptus ;" and a culation of sounds; as we see, that you may hear number of the like. So that if you inquire to the the sound of a preacher's voice, or the like, when full, you will find, that to the making of the whole you cannot distinguish what he saith. And one alphabet there will be fewer simple motions rearticulate sound will confound another, as when quired than there are letters. many speak at once.
195. In the experiment of speaking under water, when the voice is reduced to such an extreme exility, yet the articulate sounds, which are the words, are not confounded, as hath been said.
196. I conceive, that an extreme small or an extreme great sound cannot be articulate; but that the articulation requireth a mediocrity of sound: for that the extreme small sound confoundeth the articulation by contracting; and the great sound by dispersing and although, as was formerly said, a sound articulate, already created, will be contracted into a small cranny; yet the first articulation requireth more dimension.
197. It hath been observed, that in a room, or in a chapel, vaulted below and vaulted likewise in the roof, a preacher cannot be heard so well as in the like places, not so vaulted. The cause is, for that the subsequent words come on before the precedent words vanish: and therefore the articulate sounds are more confused, though the gross of the sound be greater.
198. The motions of the tongue, lips, throat, palate, &c., which go to the making of the several alphabetical letters, are worthy inquiry, and pertinent to the present inquisition of sounds: but because they are subtle, and long to describe, we
199. The lungs are the most spungy part of the body; and therefore ablest to contract and dilate itself: and where it contracteth itself, it expelleth the air; which, through the artery, throat, and mouth, maketh the voice: but yet articulation is not made but with the help of the tongue, palate, and the rest of those they call instruments of voice.
200. There is found a similitude between the sound that is made by inanimate bodies, or by animate bodies that have no voice articulate, and divers letters of articulate voices: and commonly men have given such names to those sounds as do allude unto the articulate letters; as trembling of water hath resemblance with the letter L; quenching of hot metals with the letter Z; snarling of dogs with the letter R; the noise of screechowls with the letter Sh; voice of cats with the diphthong Eu; voice of cuckoos with the diphthong Ou; sounds of strings with the letter Ng; so that if a man, for curiosity or strangeness' sake, would make a puppet or other dead body to pronounce a word, let him consider, on the one part, the motion of the instruments of voice; and on the other part, the like sounds made in inanimate bodies; and what conformity there is that causeth the similitude of sounds; and by that he may minister light to that effect.