Patrick Henry's 'Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death !'

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Speeches can define periods of history. We connect the American Civil War and the end of slavery in the United States to Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. Martin Luther King Jr.'s famous speech "I Have A Dream" can never be defused in the countries' mind with the fight for equal rights. Since speeches can define the way people look at a period, Patrick Henry's "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!" Speech could be said to define the time just before the Revolutionary War. The literary devices he uses in that famous speech are part of why it is such a well-recognized and remembered piece of literature. Patrick Henry uses the literary devices syntax, tone, and metaphor in his "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!" speech. The syntax in Henry's speech impacts the meaning and effect of it. Exclamation points are used excessively in Henry's speech. This shows the strength and urgency of his message. He is urging his audience to take up arms against the British and he feels very strongly about this. The exclamation marks demonstrate this passion and give the speech liveliness. Dashes are…show more content…
Henry states, "Our chains are forged! Their clanking may be heard on the plains of Boston!" (Line 3, 4). This metaphor compares the chains to being under British rule. Metaphors stimulate the audience's imagination and emotional reactions to the topic. By including metaphors in his speech Henry got the audience to connect emotionally to what he is saying making them better understand and agree with the points. When Henry declares that, "the next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms!" he relates the gale to the advancement of the British military (Line 6, 7). This description helps the audience to visualize the British army's march to the colonies showing them how urgent this matter was. Plus, this illustration helps the audience picture themselves in this
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