Page images
PDF
EPUB
[graphic]

AN BPI Xue

[blocks in formation]

Philadelphia:
, EDWARD C. BIDDLE, 5 MINOR STREET.

Entered according to the act of congress, in the year 1834, by Key & Buddle, in the clerk's office of the district court, for the castern district of Pennsylvania.

PRINTED BY T. K. & P. G. COLLINS, PHILA

PREFACE.

In selecting the Speeches contained in the following pages, the compiler has been influenced by two considerations, the one having reference solely to their literary merit, the other to the dignity and importance of the topics of which they treat.

In a country where almost every citizen has occasion, at some period, to express his sentiments in a public assembly, the diffusion of correct models for popular and deliberative oratory is eminently desirable. Native force, unassisted by judgment and taste, like a projectile. ill-directed, not only falls short of its aim, but becomes a useless and dangerous missile. No man is born an orator—no man is even fashioned into a judicious and impressive speaker without a certain amount of study and training. The efforts of an unschooled and fervid imagination, spurning and overleaping the boundaries of good sense and propriety, may arouse the passions and obtain the applause of the unreflecting ; but it is to “ the words of truth and soberness," sustained and elevated by a cultivated mind and chastened fancy, that men give the name and the praise of eloquence. It should ever be recollected that oratory is peculiarly an art, perfected only, according to the ancients, by the knowledge and practice of almost every other, and the mere physics of which," the eloquence of the body," as Quintilian phrases it,were with them a subject of intense application. If the improved state of popular education renders that branch of study less important to a modern speaker, it, at the same time, enhances the necessity of increased attention to that which is purely intellectual. While the "fierce democracy” of Athens

« PreviousContinue »