“Speech in the Virginia Convention” vs. “Speech in the Convention”“Speech in the Virginia Convention” vs. “Speech in the Convention”

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Many Americans, when they think of Patrick Henry and Benjamin Franklin, think of two superb work forces. They lovingly recall hearing narratives of Henry’s brave rebelliousness and Franklin’s eternal wisdom. Both great work forces were besides great speechmakers ; Henry’s strong and powerful diction and Franklin’s modest, yet honest and direct enunciation have and still make both animate many Americans to take up the cause of their state. While they surely are both strongly persuasive public talkers, which one would probably hold done a better occupation carrying the immature settlers of their clip to pick up their weaponries for the American cause?

The best manner to get down analysing such a inquiry would be to analyse their persuasive methods. To get down, Franklin’s address makes a error at the really beginning, where he states that “I confess that there are several parts of this fundamental law which I do non at present approve, but…” ( Franklin “Speech in the Convention” ) . “But” what? While he does travel on to province that he may be wrong in his judgement and that it might non be so bad, he has already made one error ; it is hard for words to carry when their Godhead opens up with self-criticism. That aside, some might reason the exact opposite – that opening up with an honorable sentiment that hurts the speaker’s ain cause would reallyaidthe talker ; people would see the individual as being more honest and willing to acknowledge their ain mistakes and would therefore see the individual as being trusty, leting the speaker’s cause-furthering statements more weight than usual, appealing to and edifice for the talker Ethos. Whatever the instance, it does non rather stand up to Henry’ gap, which begins by claiming that “No adult male thinks more extremely than I do of the nationalism, every bit good as abilities, of the really worthy gentlemen who have merely addressed the House… ” ( Henry “Speech in the Virginia Convention” ) . While he follows up by saying that he disagrees with aforementioned “worthy gentlemen” ( Henry “Speech in the Convention” ) , he still avoided the error Franklin made ; he reminded everybody that he was still on their side and that he was back uping them before go oning with his dissent, giving him really strong Ethos that is readily evident to everybody.

After Franklin’s little blooper in the presentation, he makes a strong rejoinder in saying that, even with its mistakes, the fundamental law is still closer to flawlessness than he believes any other convention can obtain. He implies that, sing the mistakes of the work forces that attended the conventions that pieced it together, it is an astonishing and admirable effort and he asserts that, when revealed to the universe, it will confuse his immature nation’s enemies, constructing up Pathos for the audience. He continues to province that, even with his uncertainnesss and uncertainties, the constitution’s confirmation goes away with his consent, and he so makes a smart move by turning around his opening blooper by claiming that he knows that everybody else likely disagrees with parts of the fundamental law every bit good, but should they talk of it outside the walls of the edifice in which he made the reference, the fundamental law may non be good plenty received to give it the support it needs to run. By saying that everyone needs to feign to hold on it to derive the support of the people, Franklin ( perchance unwittingly ) singlehandedly shamed every individual adult male whom he was turn toing into keep backing his ain sentiment of the fundamental law ( with which Franklin may differ ) by reminding them that, should they talk of their misgiving in the papers, they could destruct the state they fought so brutally to organize, adding a spot of Logos to Franklin’s statements. At least – that is what it appears to be on the top. In world, it goes even deeper than that. What Franklintrulydid was cleanly ( and one time once more, perchance accidentally ) execute an statement that allows him to win, no affair the response from a fellow constitutional framer. By converting everybody that reasoning against the new fundamental law is unsafe at the late phase of its formation in which they sit, he besides assured that, should anybody object to this, everybody else may hush him in fright of the result that Franklin predicted, adding Ethos to the Logos souffle he had merely served his audience. To stop his address, Franklin paraphrases his wants that he had before detailed, so makes another wise move in including himself in his statement, reminding everybody that he, excessively, has dissensions with the fundamental law, imparting a spot more weight and trustiness to his old statements and even rectifying his opening error that he had been easy amending throughout the address, one time once more reenforcing the strong Ethos he had worked with in his statements by taking his hearers through a cringle of Logos ( logically, if person disagrees with something openly, they wouldn’t conceal it from person else without good ground ; hence, it can be assumed that Franklin has really good ground for inquiring everybody to fall in him in non showing sentiments ) . With this concluding reaffirmation, Franklin closes his address.

Franklin, after his gap, turned about and non merely used his addresss earlier failing to his advantage, but he besides made the full balance of his address and oratory chef-d’oeuvre. While Henry surely does non hold any failings in his statement, he does miss the witty rhetoric that Franklin’s address does. Unlike Franklin, who managed to utilize his statement to reenforce his statement without using a individual logical false belief through a superb combination of Ethos and Logos, Henry does no such thing. That isn’t to state that he used an unlogical statement – instead, that he did non even try such a thing. As was stated in the presentation, Henry’s manner of reference opts for more powerful and straightforward address as opposed to Franklin’s more honest, yet reserved and cagey discourse. In his presentation, Henry claims that he speaks that which he believes to be true and of import, and that he will non hesitate to tippytoe around doing discourtesy to other people in the room, as he claims that it would be both lese majesty and profanation to state that which he does non to the full believe, constructing for himself a little spot of Logos. This achieves the intended intents of both fixing people for discourtesy ( therefore accomplishingtwo moreintents that upon which will be elaborated following ) and pardoning himself for such discourtesies with the logical thinking that it would be immoral and insincere for him non to hold laid out his ideas and feelings so bluffly, which in bend indirectly grants him Ethos from the members of the audience that put plenty thought into his words. By fixing people for discourtesy, he besides ( like two of Franklin’s strongest accomplishments in his statement, probably accidentally ) makes them more likely to be more attentive, as people will pay strong attending if they think person might diss or defame them. On top of acquiring himself more easily-sustained attending from the audience, fixing them for abuse besides licenses himself to be more unfastened, as he has already ( as was mentioned above ) excused himself from such discourtesies. He begins his chief statement by inquiring if wise work forces such as those in the room with him ( by congratulating them, he besides builds a little sum of poignancy ) would let themselves to stand on the same degree as normally-witted people by disregarding glowering unfairnesss that stand before them. By doing a claim like this, he knows that the people whom he addresses, should they disregard his statements, hazard looking like dissemblers due to the Logos presented in Henry’s statement. If they do non move, and they are in a state of affairs in which wise work forces would move, it follows that they are non genuinely wise, as Henry here insinuates. Afterwards, he creates strong Ethos with the claim that he speaks from experience. With this Ethos behind him, he tells the president at the convention to avoid shying off from struggle. He asks the president why the British would direct military force towards them if it wasn’t for the intent of flexing them into entry. The rhetorical inquiry is a reflecting illustration of Logos. He so continues by inquiring if the convention believes that reasoning will work against said ground forces, which is, once more, Logos. He so continues to remind everybody of their old efforts at repairing Britain’s grudges against them, and reminds everybody that they’ve already tried everything. As such, Henry concludes, the lone staying option is force, as Britain is directing her ships towards them as they speak. By stating all of this, Henry works with both Logos and Pathos to transfuse a sense of terror in them by doing them believe they’re in a corner with lone one pick. When people panic, they tend non to believe approximately much else than the first solution that comes to mind. If person shows up and offers to assist, a panicking individual will frequently follow them blindly in an effort to get away the panic-inducing scenario. Here, Henry is give voicing it as though the group he is turn toing is being pushed into a corner by a wolf and at that place merely happens to be a gun in the corner with them. After his portion about their state of affairs, Henry continues by promoting everybody, claiming that they must contend to avoid abandoning their cause that they had for so long fought, forcing Forth a sense of Ethos into the audience. He so asks if the audience refuses to raise weaponries because they are excessively weak, seting them in a state of affairs where they feel they must turn out themselves strong, working with Pathos. Henry, after a strong start and powerful address, stopping points by claiming that their brethren are already contending, doing the hearers want to back up them. Finally, with one last usage of Pathos, Henry closes with the words that immortalized him, “I know non what class others may take ; but as for me, give me liberty or give me decease! ” ( Henry “Speech in the Virginia Convention” ) .

While both work forces presented great addresss with good thought-out and convincing statements, Henry made no errors and played to a great extent on the emotions and pride of his audience, unlike Franklin, who largely depended on explicating why he was to be trusted with his points. While both would be great at converting a random group of Americans to take up the American cause, it appears that Henry would be somewhat better.


“ Address of Benjamin Franklin – The U.S. Constitution Online – USConstitution.net. ”Address of Benjamin Franklin – TheU.S.Constitution Online – USConstitution.net. Craig Watelena, n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2014.

“ History.org: The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation ‘s Official History and Citizenship Website. ”Patrick Henry ‘s “ Give MeAutonomyOr Give Me Death ” Address: The ColonialWilliamsburgOfficial History & A ; Citizenship Site. Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, n.d. Web. 08 Oct. 2014.