as soon as she spoke earnestly and seriously, said “I do not” instead of “I don't.”
Probably most people would do the same, although doubtless the eminent author quoted must know his own habits best.
My own observation has been that, in or out of the world of prigs, a more serious occasion usually brings with it the more ample and dignified phrase.
Nobody used the contracted forms of speech more freely than Wendell Phillips
, who was, indeed, often censured for it by the more formal and academical.
He did not hesitate to say don't
, but no one rolled out the full impressiveness of the uncontracted phrase with more power when the occasion came.
In perhaps the noblest series of accumulated climaxes to be found in all his orations-his celebrated comparison between War and Slavery-when the wave breaks at last and is ending, “Tell me where is the battle-field that is not white — white as an angel's wing-compared with the blackness of that darkness which has brooded over the Carolinas for centuries?” --it is observable that he says “where is” ; it would have broken the whole force of the wave to say “where's.”
was not usually characterized as a prig, and had at least been