In the following thesis an attempt has been made
to give reasons for the differences between good
and bad voice, dealing only with the condition of
the vocal muscles in relation to the aperture of
the glottis in vertebrate animals, and having no
regard for the variations in shape of the resonating
cavities above. My own voice being more than
commonly poor, I felt that a true diagnosis of the
cause would aid greatly in discovering a reason
for similar weakness in others.
That some definite principle in respect of the
natural plan of the larynx as an instrument of
sound might be arrived at, many dissections were
made at 'the Zoological Gardens in London by kind
permission of Mr. Beddard the prosector.
The voices of children, and of the lower
animals were also studied, in the hope that they
might afford some clue to the cause of voice
degeneration in so many adults.
Text books on the larynx make little mention
of those muscles that are here particularly
concerned, and, so far as I can tell, nothing has
yet been written treating this subject anatomically
Much of the information in the first part of
this essay has been taken from the works of Huxley,
Cheauveau, Owen, Wiedersheir, Gegenbaur, Lathan and
others, as it was impossible to obtain a specimen
of every larynx described.
If I have run counter to the opinions of many
eminent authorities, it is because I have been
driven to the belief that the average human larynx
is a partially crippled organ and that from such
no true conception of the voice can be gained.