340 ON THE CHABACTER OF THE "S" SOUND
not uninfluenced by prepossessions, they are not fully satisfactory, independent aural observations are desirable. I fear a record, or oci vation, of vibrations at so high a pitch is hardly feasible.
I may perhaps be asked if a characteristic s, having a dominan not a pure tone, what is it ? I am disposed to think that the is irregular. A fairly defined pitch does not necessitate regular sec more than a few (say 3—10) vibrations. What is the state of affairs in pipe which does not speak well, or in a violin string badly bo^ example more amenable to observation is afforded by the processio] into which a liquid jet breaks up. If the jet is well protected fro: influences, the procession is irregular, and yet there is a dominan between consecutive drops, giving rise under suitable conditions t< having a dominant pitch. Vibrations of this sort deserve more attei they have received. In the case of the s the pitch is so high that th be opportunity for interruptions so frequent that they would not be i audible, and yet not so many as to preclude a fairly defined domin I have, an impression, too, that the s includes subordinate compo cidedly graver than the dominant pitch.
Similar questions naturally arise ovqr the character of the sh, sounds. neither case was the' sound judged to be at all a proper s, though perhaps some resemblance remained. The effect was simply that of a high note, like the squeak of a bird or insect. Further trials on another day gave confirmatory results.