Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln Second Inaugural Address Analysis

In: English and Literature

Submitted By Valeriemota99
Words 532
Pages 3
Abraham Lincoln – 2nd Inaugural Address

The Civil War was a time period where the nation was isolated into two regions, the emancipated North and the captive South. The war settled two constitutional questions, whether the United States was to be a segregated confederation of self-governing states or a unified nation with an autonomous national government, and whether this nation, where all men were conceive with an equal right to liberty, would prevail as the largest slaveholding country in the world. After bearing the nation’s agony on his shoulders for four lengthy years, President Abraham Lincoln in his Second Inaugural Address deliberated the outgrowths of the civil war and revealed his vision of unity and forgiveness for the future of the nation.

In his Second Inaugural Address, Abraham Lincoln adopts rhetorical devices appealing to his audience’s credibility and emotions to settle the purpose of his speech in merging a broken nation through the abolition of slavery. Lincoln articulates the cause of the war, slavery, in the saying “These slaves constituted a peculiar and powerful interest. All knew that this interest was somehow the cause of the war”. Throughout the speech, he outlines American slavery as the harrowing offense that God wills to remove for the well-being and future of slaves.

Lincoln insinuated to the common base the North and the South share, particularly religiously, as he asserts “Both read the same Bible and pray to the same God.” Lincoln amplifies his speech by using allusions from the Bible, such as, “The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether” and “Woe unto the world because of offenses.” These moral citations associated the Union with the Confederacy, recalling them of their mutual principles and spiritual intentions. With the endorsement of these quotes, Lincoln aimed to establish a sense of national…...

Similar Documents

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...Ethics Competencies: In 1846, Lincoln was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, pledging only to serve one term. He kept this promise to himself and his constituents. During his time in Congress, Lincoln opposed policies of then-President James K. Polk, including the Mexican-American War. Lincoln attributed the war to Polk’s desire for “military glory.” He emphasized his opposition by drafting and introducing his Spot Resolutions, which demanded that Polk show evidence of a Mexican incursion into the United States and their shedding the blood of American citizens. The legislation wasn’t passed and it cost Lincoln supporters in his political career as well as earning turning the press against him in Illinois. After backing a losing candidate in the presidential race of 1848, Lincoln was denied a high profile political post and refused to take another post that would have isolated him politically and geographically. He left the House after his single term and went back to practicing law in Illinois. He returned to politics to oppose slavery and an attempt to repeal an act that would repeal the Missouri Compromise, which banned slavery in the American territories. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_life_and_career_of_Abraham_Lincoln Self-Competencies: Lincoln was raised on the western frontier with limited or no access to formal education. His formal education consisted of perhaps 18 months of schooling from illiterate teachers. In effect he was......

Words: 1060 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...one name, one man who stands above all the rest. Abraham Lincoln has come to define the American experience. His beginnings as a poor farmer in Kentucky to his rise in politics to his Presidency, his story fascinates everyone who reads and studies it. Abraham Lincoln is the epitome of what America is. He is Americas most cherished and beloved President and he may be the most well known American President in the world. Despite all the praise bestowed upon Abraham Lincoln there are those who do not buy into the ‘official’ Lincoln legacy. A small, but growing group of Lincoln detractors claim that Lincoln was not the father of freedom and liberty, the great emancipator and the savior of the union; they see Lincoln as a diabolical dictator. A man who took advantage of America in its darkest hour, a man who had no respect for the Constitution, he instead sought to destroy and undermine it every chance he got. Abraham Lincoln was President during America’s darkest hour; he saved the union and kept the country together. Lincoln was justified in the actions he took, despite attempts to paint Lincoln as a tyrannical dictator there is no question that Lincoln’s status as America’s greatest President is deserved and true. During his Presidency Lincoln met fierce opposition. This is not uncommon among Presidents; they are commonly held in higher regard after they leave office than when they are in office. However, the opposition Lincoln met tended to be intense and passionate. His......

Words: 3657 - Pages: 15

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...Book Report Gienapp, William E., Abraham Lincoln and Civil War America; Oxford University Press. New York, 2002. This book is a glimpse into Abraham Lincoln’s political career and personal life. His personal life was much hidden from the outside world, and his feelings and personal affairs were kept out of public scrutiny. He was neither a great husband nor a father, but was considered to be one of the greatest presidents this nation has ever seen. Lincoln was a very conservative man, and managed to provide leadership in both the political and military strategies. He is considered the man who shaped change in our nation, which led to many controversial issues being solved. It took a man of great strength and courage to lead and control the nation during this very demanding time. He was the right person at the right time. President Abraham Lincoln was born in Nolan Creek, Kentucky, on February 12, 1809. In 1811, his father moved to Indiana due to problems with land titles and to get away from slavery. However, his reason was that slaves competed directly for work opportunities for his father. Lincoln’s formal education was limited due to availability. In his later teen years he began to read anything he could. His first brush with law came in the form of a book entitled “The Revised Laws of Indiana.” In the pursuit of a career, Lincoln arrived in Springfield, Illinois in 1837, where he began his new life as a lawyer. Lincoln held that democracy was the most......

Words: 1275 - Pages: 6

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...Abraham Lincoln was born February 12, 1809. His parents were Thomas and Nancy Lincoln. He was raised in a farm near Hodgenville, Kentucky. During his childhood Abraham was in the period of slavery, but the Lincoln family did not own any slaves, not only because they couldn’t afford it, but also his father Thomas did not approve of it. Later in 1816 the Lincoln family had to move to Indiana, near the Ohio River. Soon enough in 1818 Abraham’s mother, Nancy Lincoln, died of milk sickness. After the mother died, Thomas found a new wife named Sarah Bush Johnston. A few years later, the life in Indiana wasn’t as expected and the family had to move to Macon Country, Illinois. Abraham believed that he should be off by himself, and soon enough is what he did at the age of 23, and later he began his political career and became a member of the Whig party, and also a candidate for the Illinois House of Representatives. In 1832, after being fired from his job at a store, he decided to join the Illinois militia to help fight in the Black Hack war, and was chosen captain by his group. He served his country for 3 months, and it changed his life forever, because during the time he was in the militia, he saved an innocent Native American from being attacked from the other soldiers in the camp. When things were bad for him, he gave it his best to bring himself up again, and in 1834 Lincoln ran for state legislature, and in a few years he learned everything to become a lawyer and took an oath......

Words: 1578 - Pages: 7

Free Essay

Reagan' S Second Inaugural Address

...Ronald Reagan: Second Inaugural address This is, as Senator Mathias told us, the 50th time that we the people have celebrated this historic occasion. When the first President, George Washington, placed his hand upon the Bible, he stood less than a single day's journey by horseback from raw, untamed wilderness. There were 4 million Americans in a union of 13 States. Today we are 60 times as many in a union of 50 States. We have lighted the world with our inventions, gone to the aid of mankind wherever in the world there was a cry for help, journeyed to the Moon and safely returned. So much has changed. And yet we stand together as we did two centuries ago. When I took this oath four years ago, I did so in a time of economic stress. Voices were raised saying we had to look to our past for the greatness and glory. But we, the present-day Americans, are not given to looking backward. In this blessed land, there is always a better tomorrow. Four years ago, I spoke to you of a new beginning and we have accomplished that. But in another sense, our new beginning is a continuation of that beginning created two centuries ago when, for the first time in history, government, the people said, was not our master, it is our servant. [ ... ] We believed then and now: There are no limits to growth and human progress when men and women are free to follow their dreams. And we were right to believe that. Tax rates have been reduced, inflation cut dramatically, and more people are employed than......

Words: 736 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...ABRAHAM LINCOLN Sixteenth President of the United States By: Jacquelyn McRae Abraham Lincoln was born in a log cabin in Kentucky to Thomas and Nancy Lincoln. The family moved to Indiana and 8 year old Abe helped his father build another log house. A year later his mother died and the house was very empty. His father remarried and in addition to his sister Sarah, who was 3 years older, there were now 3 more children in the family. Lincoln had less than a year of schooling. Books were scarce and so was paper. He worked his arithmetic problems on a board and cleaned the board with a knife so he could use it again. The family owned a Bible and he spent many hours reading it. He would copy parts of it in order to memorize it. Sometimes he would walk for miles to borrow a book. One of his favorite books was "The Life of George Washington". By the time he was 17, he knew he wanted to be a lawyer. He would walk 17 miles to the county courthouse in order to watch the lawyers work. He sat in the back of the courtroom and watched them as they shook their fists and became red in the face. Then he would go home and think about what he had seen. When he was 21 years old he moved to Illinois and spent a year laboring on a farm. It is said that he and his fellow-laborer split 3,000 rails in that year 1830. He also managed a flat-boat on the Ohio River Every time he got a new job he would try to work on a skill which would help him when he became a lawyer. When he......

Words: 983 - Pages: 4

Free Essay

Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address

... Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address In an attempt to garner sympathy and cooperation, for the sake of progress in southern reconstruction, from both sides of the former front, Lincoln first uses passive word choice and language, and then uses biblical allusions to conjure a moralistic tone. Initially, Lincoln's language and word choice do not appear to be antagonizing. Lincoln's statement: “All dreaded it-all sought to avert it,” referring to the “impending civil war,” avoids placing definite blame on the south. By speaking in this manor, Lincoln firmly asserts his belief that the south had no intention of bloodshed, partially relieving the conscience of many southern citizens. However, Lincoln's word choice shifts to a defensive stance. The shift can be seen when Lincoln says, “Both parties deprecated war; but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive.” Again, Lincoln casts aside all blame of bloodlust, but he also casts blame away from the union. His mixed language here is meant to invoke a feeling of acceptance in citizens rather than antagonizing them. Before Lincoln begins making allusions, he defends the original intent of the government, “... claimed no right to do more than to restrict the territorial enlargement of it...” It refers to slavery, and Lincoln's language serves to point out the south's own childishness in a passive, dismissing demeanor. Overall, Lincoln chose his words wisely as not to......

Words: 516 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...Bradley Abraham Lincoln is one of the most important presidents of the United States. Lincoln was born in 1809 in a log cabin in the backwoods of Indiana. He is raised by his very humble and uneducated parents. When he was about seven years old he began to help his father build a farm out of what was known as a “wilderness” of the backwoods. Although he went to school for a few months, he mostly learned from personally studying to gain basic knowledge of reading, writing and mathematics. With the attitude to learn and achieve knowledge Lincoln was able to enter a legal profession at the age of 27. This would start his long journey to presidency. Out of everything I have learned about Abraham Lincoln there are three important things that should be known about him. The first thing is that Abraham Lincoln is known as the Great Emancipator because he on January 1st 1863 would issue an order that “all persons held as slaves within any state or designated part of a state, the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States , shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free.” This is known as the Emancipation Proclamation. This would free African American slaves from within the confederacy and allow government recognize and maintain this freedom. This also opened the Unions intent to recruit African American soldiers. Fredrick Douglass would later describe Lincoln as “Swift, Zealous, radical and determined” to end slavery. The Second thing is that......

Words: 550 - Pages: 3

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...Abraham Lincoln Through the course of American history there are names that stand out, names that represent more than just a person, but represent an era in American history. The list of important and influential figures in American history is too long and numerous to list. Yet there is always one name, one man who stands above all the rest. Abraham Lincoln has come to define the American experience. His beginnings as a poor farmer in Kentucky to his rise in politics to his Presidency, his story fascinates everyone who reads and studies it. Abraham Lincoln is the epitome of what America is. He is Americas most cherished and beloved President and he may be the most well-known American President in the world. Despite all the praise bestowed upon Abraham Lincoln there are those who do not buy into the ‘official’ Lincoln legacy. A small, but growing group of Lincoln detractors claim that Lincoln was not the father of freedom and liberty, the great emancipator and the savior of the union; they see Lincoln as a diabolical dictator. A man who took advantage of America in its darkest hour, a man who had no respect for the Constitution, he instead sought to destroy and undermine it every chance he got. Abraham Lincoln was President during America’s darkest hour; he saved the union and kept the country together. Lincoln was justified in the actions he took, despite attempts to paint Lincoln as a tyrannical dictator there is no question that Lincoln’s status as America’s greatest......

Words: 3790 - Pages: 16

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln Biography

...Abraham Lincoln Biography Abraham Lincoln was born in Hardin County, Kentucky on February 12, 1809. He moved to Indiana in 1816 and lived there the rest stated that he had about one year of formal education. However, he was taught by many different individuals. He loved to read and of his youth. His mother died when he was nine but he was very close to his stepmother who urged him to read. Lincoln himself learn from any books he could get his hands on. Family Ties: Father: Thomas Lincoln - farmer and carpenter Mother: Nancy Hanks - died when Lincoln was nine. His stepmother, Sarah Bush Johnston, was very close to him. Siblings: Sarah Grigsby was the only sibling to live to maturity. Wife: Mary Todd - grew up in relative wealth. Four of her siblings fought for the South. She was considered mentally unbalanced. Children: Edward - died at age 3 in 1850; Robert Todd - lawyer and diplomat; William Wallace - the only president's child to die in the White House, and Thomas "Tad" - died at 18. Abraham Lincoln's Military Career: In 1832, Lincoln enlisted to fight in the Black Hawk War. He was quickly elected to be the captain of a company of volunteers. His company joined regulars under Colonel Zachary Taylor. He only served 30 days in this capacity and then signed on as a private in the mounted Rangers. He then joined the Independent Spy Corps. He saw no real action during his short stint in the military. Career Before the Presidency: Lincoln worked as a clerk before...

Words: 1219 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln Beginnings and Life

...Abraham Lincoln BEGINNINGS AND LIFE Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809 in a log cabin in the Kentucky wilderness. When be was a little boy his Grandfather fought in the Revolutionary War. He had a little sister by the name of Sarah. As he went to school he met a boy by the name of Austin. They instantly became friends more so best of friends. At first Abe wasn't allowed to go to school because he didn't have a good pair of britches. In his pastime he loved to read. When Abe was eleven, his mother died of what they called "milk sick" which occurred from drinking unpasteurized milk. That was four years after they moved to a new farm in southern Indiana. He had to live in an open shed throughout the winter. The same year his mother died, his father remarried. He married Sarah Bush Johnson. She brought three kids and a cousin Dennis Hanks. When Abe was nineteen, he worked as a boatman and make his first trip down the Mississippi River to New Orleans, the center of the slave trade. When Abe was twenty-one, he moved with his family to Illinois. However Abe's brother Thomas didn't make it to Illinois because he died of influenza. Soon after Abe made his second trip on the flatboat to New Orleans to defend the blacks and fight slavery. Abe served as a captain in the Black Hawk War and was defeated. Abe came back to Illinois and not long after was elected to the State Legislature and soon became one of the most promising young Whig party......

Words: 1231 - Pages: 5

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...Abraham Lincoln on the Challenge of Equality On October 16, 1854, Abraham Lincoln gave a speech disapproving the Kansas-Nebraska Act at Peoria, Illinois. He believed that it was too modified and that it went against the Missouri Compromise. The Missouri Compromise prohibited slavery in the remainder of the Louisiana Purchase. Lincoln had said earlier, “For although volume upon volume is written to prove slavery a very good thing, we never hear of the man who wishes to take the good of it, by being a slave himself” (Mason/Baker, 436). The Kansas-Nebraska Act gave the territories popular sovereignty, the direct opposite of the previous decision. “I hate it because it deprives our republican example of its just influence in the world; enables the enemies of free institutions with plausibility to taunt us as hypocrites; causes the real friends of freedom to doubt our sincerity; and especially because it forces so many good men among ourselves into an open war with the very fundamental principles of civil liberty, criticizing the Declaration of Independence, and insisting that there is no right principle of action but self-interest” (Mason/Baker, 463). In 1854, Abraham Lincoln protested that both blacks and whites had the same right to enslave each other and neither had more superiority. He used a theory to prove all of the whites' reasons for slavery were incorrect and could be turned around to enslave them. "You say A. is white, and B is black. It is color, then; the lighter...

Words: 1025 - Pages: 5

Free Essay

Abraham Lincoln Analysis

...Rebekah Sanchez Professor Scales COM 101 16 November 2015 Abraham Lincoln Analysis Lincoln was a righteous man who was very passionate about his ideals. He was passionate about abolishing slavery. His passion was shown through his words. He was a righteous man, he believed in equality for everyone. Looking back in history, many people refer to Abraham Lincoln as "honest Abe". He was truly one of the greatest leaders this nation had.  Part of what made him such an incredible leader was his way of presenting himself. When Lincoln spoke, he always painted a picture with his words. He was a very good story teller. He did not use overly fancy words, he chose his words carefully and made sure that anyone of any education level could understand what he was saying. Another aspect that made Abraham an effective speaker is the length of his speeches. Lincoln did not bore his audience with two hour long speeches; he gave very brief but powerful and effective speeches.  Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address is a very memorable speech. The speech’s opening, “fore score and seven years ago…” is a very poetic and eloquent way to start a speech. It is more interesting way of saying 87 years ago. He strikes a chord with his words when he is talking about those who have passed; by saying they essentially gave their lives so that our nation can live.  In this specific speech, he repeats the words “we” which is him showing the nation that we all stand together. His repetition is so subtle that the......

Words: 832 - Pages: 4

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...many Americans think of Abraham Lincoln, they think first of all, as the president who freed the slaves. He is immortalized as the "Great Emancipator," and widely regarded as a champion of black freedom who supported social equality of the races, and who fought the American Civil War (1861-1865) to free the slaves. In actuality, Abraham Lincoln did not fight the Civil War to free the slaves. He fought it to save the Union. He did not agree with slavery and one of the good things that came out of the Union being saved was the abolishment of slavery. (Gienapp, 2002). (Jenness, 2007). Abraham Lincoln was a self made man that rose mythically from humble beginnings to national greatness. He began life as a farm boy. He did not come from a family who believed in education. Despite this, Abraham Lincoln read books and done whatever he could to educate himself. He was a man that believed in honesty and caring for other people. After learning many lessons in life and climbing the ladder of success, his fine qualities landed him as the United States of America’s 16th President. He was successful in doing many great things for people and his community and eventually the United States. (Gienapp, 2002). (Jenness, 2007). He was embarrassed of his family background. He came from a poor family that was farmers. His life as a farm boy was spent doing chores, such as hauling water and chopping wood, and helping in the fields. His mother died when Abraham Lincoln was 9. His......

Words: 2227 - Pages: 9

Premium Essay

Abraham Lincoln

...Abraham Lincoln was born on February 12, 1809 close to Hodgenville, Kentucky. His family moved to Indiana in 1816. When Lincoln was ten his mother died from poisoned milk. His father remarried the next year to Sarah Bush Johnston. Abraham liked her very much and even later recalled her "his angel mother. (Encarta)" Abraham had less than one year of formal education during his life. He was self-educated and taught himself how to read and write. When he was not in school, he worked on the frontier farm clearing out forests with his axe. When Abraham Lincoln was 21 he and his family moved to Illinois. There he worked on a farm growing corn. But more importantly here was where he gave his first political speech. In 1830, the same year his family moved to Illinois, he went to a political rally and was convinced to talk for a candidate on his behalf. According to a witness there, Lincoln "was frightened but got warmed up and made the best speech of the day. (Encarta)." Abraham Lincoln's political career started in the spring of 1832 by running for a seat in the Illinois' House of Representatives. However an unusual turn of events happened a month after he announced he was running. The store he was working at went bankrupt and he lost his job. Very shortly thereafter Native Americans rebelled and the governor of Illinois asked for volunteers to help put this down to which Lincoln promptly volunteered for. He never experienced actual combat, but during his 3 month time period he......

Words: 3474 - Pages: 14