Again, fear is on his side as he writes: “Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance, by lying supinely on our backs, and hugging the delusive phantom of hope, until our enemies shall have us bound hand and foot?” In the same fashion, he uses another slavery comparison, and finishes strong with his iconic line, “give me liberty or give me death!” Patrick Henry is a brave soul whose revolutionary ideas helped shape the country we know today. His speech used rhetoric as a way to spread his message which will live in
The Flamboyant Trumpet “Give me liberty, or give me death.” Patrick Henry, born on May 29th, 1736 in Studley, Virginia, had one of the most memorable speeches of his time. Henry played a major role in the American Revolution. Henry taught by his father and uncle, only received minimal education. He married his first wife, Sarah Shelton in 1754 and together they had six children. He was in a speaker in the “Parson’s Case” and won election to the House of Burgesses in 1765.
On March 23, 1775, Patrick Henry presented the idea of fighting against Great Britain for liberty, which Great Britain had suppressed the American colonists for years. Freedom and liberty were necessary for the colonists of the Thirteen Colonies to feel like individual people. Every person should be able to decide the action they would take and the responsibilities they would have. This speech was remarkable and memorable for the start of the bold actions that changed the world forever. Patrick Henry persuade the colonist to fight the British government by using his strong voice as a weapon.
In the winter of 1776, during American Revolution, the still young America faced three major dilemmas: their seemingly imminent defeat, the moral debate between the Whigs and the British loyalists, and the panic and confusion of the American public. In efforts to settle the three American dilemmas, Thomas Paine wrote The Crisis No. 1 in December of 1776. In his work, Paine aimed to calm the American public and convince them to stand up to the British, and turn the war into an American victory. Paine was very successful in this, and his paper was proclaimed as one of the most persuasive works of the American Revolution.
Hence, they no longer could sit idly by watching a war begin to wage in the north. Honesty and repeated use of metaphors made the speech relatable to his audience. Metaphors related his points to real-life examples, and rhetorical questions forced listeners to rethink their previous perspectives. Figures of speech, metaphors and similes, and rhetorical questions were techniques Patrick Henry used to incite his audience into declaring war against the
Patrick Henry’s “Speech to the Second Virginia Convention” is the most persuasive historical document because of his use of allusions, sense of urgency, and his choice of extremes. Henry wrote his speech and gave it in 1775 in support of fighting the British with the Virginia militia. Henry began his speech with a series of allusions which related closely with what the men at the convention would know best. One of his most influential allusions he made was to the story of Judas in the Bible, telling those listening to not “be betrayed with a kiss” by the King of England (Henry 1). His allusion emphasized the thought that colonists were betrayed by the King while the King tried to show the colonists just how great he felt he was.
Two of the most important pieces of work in pre-revolution America were Thomas Paine’s Common Sense and Patrick Henry’s “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death,”speech. The two writings were very effective with the points they addressed and their eventual outcome. However, the two patriots each used different tones. Patrick Henry used a fiery, yet passionate tone, Thomas Paine used a sarcastic, formal tone. In the end though, it was Patrick Henry’s tone which proved to be more effective in swaying American colonists towards independence.
In Henry’s speech, he was aiming to convince the delegates at the Virginia Convention to begin preparation for war With Britain. He uses powerful words and a considerable amount of patriotism to influence those at the Convention. For the reason that Patrick Henry used rhetorical devices more effectively than Thomas Jefferson, he is the better author. Both Henry and Jefferson use the rhetorical device repetition persuasively, however Henry’s use of repetition is prominent. Henry is very spirited in his writing, especially when using repetition.
Patrick Henry’s “Speech to Virginia Convention” is structurally more persuasive than Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography and the Declaration of Independence because of his use of rhetorical devices such as, rhetorical questions, logos, and pathos. Henry’s address contains many rhetorical questions to emphasize his point and to induce a persuasion into his audience. For example, Henry said, “Shall we acquire the means of effectual resistance by lying on our backs. . .until our enemies shall have bound us hand and foot?” in his speech to exemplify that they needed to act instead of doing nothing.
He got his point across without offending or being rude instead he decided to use logic to polite alert everyone to the crisis he was seeing. The speech was so well made that even though no one transcribed his words everyone in the room would not forget them. Now hundreds of years later we all know of Patrick Henry’s great speech. Henry believed that Virginia should be free of the practices he perceived to be slaver enforced by Britain.