The Apology professes to be a record of the actual speech Socrates delivered in his own defense at the trial. In the Athenian jury system, an "apology" is composed of three parts: a speech, followed by a counter-assessment, then some final words. "Apology" is a transliteration, not a translation, of the Greek apologia, meaning "defense"; in this sense it is not apologetic.
St. John's Church, Richmond, Virginia March 23, 1775. MR. PRESIDENT: No man thinks more highly than I do of the patriotism, as well as abilities, of the very worthy gentlemen who have just addressed the House. But different men often see the same subject in different lights; and, therefore, I hope it will not be thought disrespectful to those gentlemen if, entertaining as I do, opinions of a..
Frederick Douglass (1818-1895) was an African-American social reformer, orator, writer and statesman. After escaping from slavery, he became a leader of the abolitionist movement, gaining note for his dazzling oratory and incisive antislavery writing. He stood as a living counter-example to slaveholders' arguments that slaves did not have the intellectual capacity to function as independent Amer..
At the site of one of the Civil War's pivotal battles, Lincoln delivered an address that was as succinct — just about three minutes and 265 words long —as it was memorable. As he helped dedicate a cemetery to Gettysburg's fallen soldiers, he issued a stirring plea for the country to pay them tribute by honoring principles — liberty, equality — worth dying for.
In the 1800s, women in the United States had few legal rights and did not have the right to vote. This speech was given by Susan B. Anthony after her arrest for casting an illegal vote in the presidential election of 1872. She was tried and then fined $100 but refused to pay.
After only a few days on the job, newly appointed Prime Minister Winston Churchill gave this riveting, yet short, speech in the House of Commons on May 13, 1940. In this speech Churchill offers up his own "blood, toil, tears, and sweat" so that there will be "victory at all costs." This speech has become well known as the first of many morale boosting speeches made by Churchill to inspire the...
Inaugural Address, 1961: In a relatively brief address that he spent two months crafting, Kennedy —at 43, the youngest president elected to the office and the first Roman Catholic — stressed the importance of national service.
Probably the most famous speech of the 20th century by Martin Luther King on Wednesday, August 28, 1963, at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington DC. I present to you a heartfelt speech which reminds us the fundamental rights and values of man in full version "I Have A Dream" is the popular name given to the public speech by Martin Luther King, Jr., when he spoke of his desire for a future where...
n the wake of the ugly violence perpetuated against civil rights marchers in Selma, Alabama in 1965, Johnson adapted the "We Shall Overcome" mantra in this call for the country to end racial discrimination. By throwing the full weight of the Presidency behind the movement for the first time, Johnson helped usher in the Voting Rights Act.
Reagan issued his famous challenge to Mikhail Gorbachev in Berlin, the speech earned mixed reviews. Even members of the President's own team were lukewarm on it. But in 1989, the Berlin Wall was demolished, and today the address is remembered, in the words of the German newspaper Bild, as "Mr. Gorbachev tear down this wall."
As the political season heats up, TIME takes a tour of history's best rhetoric...