Through their accounts, Wirt reconstructed what Henry spoke that day. The motivation behind the speech was to incite the determination of the Virginia House members to raise a militia, or voluntary army, that would fight against the British army. Henry begins by addressing the men who spoke before him that day in the House. These men had argued against staging a war against Britain; they are against the proposal Henry was about to make for the colony of Virginia to form a militia, as many of the northern colonies had already done.
Delegate Patrick Henry presented resolutions to raise a militia, and to put Virginia in a posture of defense. On the 23rd, Henry presented a proposal to organize a volunteer company of cavalry or infantry in every Virginia county.
Listen to the full speech audio clip 7: No man thinks more highly than I do of the patriotism, as well as abilities, of the very worthy gentlemen who have just addressed the House. But different men often see the same subject in different lights; and, therefore, I hope it will not be thought disrespectful to those gentlemen if, entertaining as I do, opinions of a character very opposite to theirs, I shall speak forth my sentiments freely, and without reserve.
This is no time for ceremony.
The question before the House is one of awful moment to this country. For my own part, I consider it as nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery; and in proportion to the magnitude of the subject ought to be the freedom of the debate.
It is only in this way that we can hope to arrive at truth, and fulfil the great responsibility which we hold to God and our country. Should I keep back my opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offence, I should consider myself as guilty of treason towards my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the majesty of heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings.
President, it is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts.
Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be of the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and, having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it.
I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided; and that is the lamp of experience. I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past.
And judging by the past, I wish to know what there has been in the conduct of the British ministry for the last ten years, to justify those hopes with which gentlemen have been pleased to solace themselves, and the House? Is it that insidious smile with which our petition has been lately received?
Trust it not, sir; it will prove a snare to your feet. Suffer not yourselves to be betrayed with a kiss. Ask yourselves how this gracious reception of our petition comports with these war-like preparations which cover our waters and darken our land.
Are fleets and armies necessary to a work of love and reconciliation?
|Understanding||John's Church in Richmond, where the legislature was meeting with the immortal words:|
|Who can edit:||John's Church--instead of the Capitol in Williamsburg. Delegate Patrick Henry presented resolutions to raise a militia, and to put Virginia in a posture of defense.|
|The Speech in the Virginia Convention by Zaynab Hassan on Prezi||Patrick Henry, March 23, No man thinks more highly than I do of the patriotism, as well as abilities, of the very worthy gentlemen who have just addressed the House.|
Have we shown ourselves so unwilling to be reconciled, that force must be called in to win back our love? Let us not deceive ourselves, sir. These are the implements of war and subjugation; the last arguments to which kings resort. I ask, gentlemen, sir, what means this martial array, if its purpose be not to force us to submission?
Can gentlemen assign any other possible motive for it? Has Great Britain any enemy, in this quarter of the world, to call for all this accumulation of navies and armies? No, sir, she has none. They are meant for us; they can be meant for no other.Compare and Contrast two speeches: Patrick Henry’s “Speech at the Virginia Convention” Directions: Write a page research paper on the question listed below.
Develop a position (thesis) and state it as the last sentence of the first paragraph. speech in the virginia convention thesis statement. Henry, P. (). Patrick Henry’s Speech to the Virginia House of Burgesses, Richmond, Virginia March 23, Historic American Documents (Lit2Go Edition).
Retrieved February 06, , from. Henry, Patrick. To avoid interference from Lieutenant-Governor Dunmore and his Royal Marines, the Second Virginia Convention met March 20, inland at Richmond--in what is now called St.
John's Church--instead of the Capitol in Williamsburg. Free Essay: “Give me liberty or give me death!” This statement from Patrick Henry’s “Speech to the Virginia Convention,” delivered to the House of Burgesses.
Start studying Patrick Henry's Speech to the Virginia Convention. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools.
At a Glance. In his famous speech to the Virginia Convention, Patrick Henry implores his countrymen to declare war against the British. He thinks of colonial rule as a kind of enforced subjugation.