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Unit-05-give me liberty or give me death (to the students)


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GIVE ME LIBERTY OR GIVE ME DEATH
Patrick Henry

1. Mr. President: 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 object 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.

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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 fulfill 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 toward my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings.

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2. Mr. 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'm willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst and to provide for it.

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3. 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, 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.

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Suffer not yourselves to be betrayed with a kiss. Ask yourselves how this gracious reception of our petition comports with those warlike preparations which cover our waters and darken our land. Are fleets and armies necessary to a work of love and reconciliation? 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.

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4. 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. They are sent over to bind and rivet upon us those chains which the British ministry have been so long forging.

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5. And what have we to oppose to them? Shall we try argument? Sir, we have been trying that for the last ten years. Have we anything new to offer upon the subject? Nothing. We have held the subject up in every light of which it is capable; but it has been all in vain. Shall we resort to entreaty and humble supplication? What terms shall we find which have not already been exhausted? Let us not, I beseech you, sir, deceive ourselves longer.

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6. Sir, we have done everything that could be done to avert the storm which is now coming on. We have petitioned; we have remonstrated; we have supplicated; we have prostrated ourselves before the throne, and have implored its interposition to arrest the tyrannical hands of the ministry and Parliament. Our petitions have been slighted; our remonstrances have produced additional violence and insult; our supplications have been disregarded; and we have been spurned with contempt from the foot of the throne! In vain, after these things, may we indulge the fond hope of peace and reconciliation.

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There is no longer any room for hope. If we wish to be free, if we mean to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending, if we mean not basely to abandon the noble struggle in which we have been so long engaged, and which we have pledged ourselves never to abandon until the glorious object of our contest shall be obtained — we must fight! I repeat it, sir, we must fight! An appeal to arms and to the God of Hosts is all that is left us!

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7. They tell us, sir, that we are weak — unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. But when shall we be stronger? Will it be the next week, or the next year? Will it be when we are totally disarmed, and when a British guard shall be stationed in every house? Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? 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 bound us hand and foot? Sir, we are not weak, if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power.

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Three millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, and in such a country as that which we possess, are invincible by any force which our enemy can send against us. Besides, sir, we shall not fight our battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave. Besides, sir, we have no election.

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If we were base enough to desire it, it is now too late to retire the contest. There is no retreat but in submission and slavery! Our chains are forged! Their clanging may be heard on the plains of Boston! The war is inevitable — and let it come! I repeat it, sir, let it come!

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8. It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, "Peace, peace" — but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!

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Paragraph 1 Analysis The first paragraph, the beginning of the text, immediately attracts the audience's attention. The speaker first expresses his opinion of the gentlemen and prepares his audience for a drastically different position from that of the gentlemen. Next, he refers to the question before the house as one of freedom or slavery. Then, he mentions the motive for the expression of his opinions.

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Paragraphs 2- 4 Analysis These three paragraphs, the second part of the text, dramatically present the real situation America is faced with. The speaker urges the gentlemen to admit the reality and advises them not to deceive themselves. He indirectly mentions what the British Ministry has done for the last ten years and clearly conveys his view about the dangerous situation. He intends to disillusion the house of gentlemen and open their eyes to the cruel reality.

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Paragraphs 5-7 Analysis These paragraphs constitute the third part of this eloquent speech. The orator first eloquently drives it home that it is pointless to further argue about the subject and to continue to resort to entreaty and humble supplication, that it is futile to entertain the fond hope of peace and reconciliation, and that Americans must appeal to arms and fight for freedom. Next, the speaker argues against the misconception that America is weak — unable to cope with so formidable an adversary. Then, he argues for his firm belief that America is bound to win.

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Paragraph 8 Analysis The last paragraph, the last part of the speech, impressively describes the urgent situation and asserts the orator's attitude toward life and freedom. In addition, it calls on people to fight heroically and dare to sacrifice for freedom.

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Paragraph 1: Question

Why does the speaker think that he should express his opinions boldly?
To the speaker, America is at a critical juncture, and he thinks he is duty-bound to save his motherland and that he should be faithful to God. Should he hold back his opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offence, he should consider himself as guilty of treason toward his country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heave, which he reveres above all earthly kings.

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Paragraph 2: Question

According to the speaker, what should the wise gentlemen do? The wise men should neither shut their eyes against a painful truth nor listen to the song of that siren till she transforms them into beasts. They ought to see and hear the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation. Whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, the wise men should be willing to know the whole truth, to know the worst and to provide for it.

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Paragraph 3: Discussion

What does Patrick Henry imply by the word “lamp” in his speech?
Lamp metaphorically refers to one’s experiences that guides one’s course of action. The past conduct of the British ministry has proved itself untrustworthy. We must call in our forces to fight back.

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Paragraphs 3- 4: Question

What is the actual situation America is confronted with?
America is confronted with warlike preparations, which cover their waters and darken their land. British fleets and armies are in battle array, ready to overwhelm the Americans. They are sent over to bind and rivet upon them those chains which the British ministry has been so long forging.

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Paragraph 6: Question

What is the main idea of Paragraph 6?
The writer illustrates clearly that everything that could be done has been done in order to avert the fast approaching war. He advises the gentlemen to abandon their fond hope of peace and reconciliation. He urges the American people to fight for freedom with great determination.

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Paragraph 7: Question

Why does the orator hold the view that America is strong enough to cope with so formidable an adversary?
The Americans are not weak if they make proper use of those means which the God of nature has placed in their power. Besides, they will not fight their battles alone. There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations and who will raise up friends to fight their battles for them. The battle is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave.

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Paragraph 8: Questions

1. What is the main idea of the last part?
There is no longer any possibility for peace, the war has actually begun, and that Americans must take action immediately and fight for freedom.

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Paragraph 8: Questions

2. What does the last sentence tell us?
The last sentence declares the speaker's attitude toward life and freedom and meanwhile calls on people to fight for freedom.

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Paragraph 8: Questions

3. How would you describe the tone of Henry’s speech?
The speech is filled with patriotic passion and urgency, severe criticism, and appealing sensation.

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Paragraph 8: Questions

4. How does the beginning related to the concluding paragraph?
Both present the sharp contrast: the actual situation and what gentlemen claim. Same topic—freedom.

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“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.” Paraphrase ? No man admires more than I do the patriotism and abilities of the noble gentlemen who have just delivered speeches to the house.

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worthy adj. (usu. jocular) deserving respect, recognition, or consideration e.g. 1. They are worthy citizens of the town. 2. We are engaged in a worthy cause. 3. She has a worthy record of achievements. be worthy of sth./to do sth.: deserve sth. or to do sth. e.g. 1. Her achievements are worthy of the highest praise. 2. She was not worthy to accept the honor offered her.

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address vt. to make a speech to a person or an audience, esp. formally e.g. 1. The chairman will now address the meeting. 2. The President is now addressing the nation.

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house n. a group of people who meet to discuss or pass laws
In this speech, the house refers to the House of Burgesses, the representative assembly of colonial Virginia. And here, the house is used as a case of metonymy. See more examples below: 1. The House of Commons/Lords are discussing the law. 2. The House of Representatives passed three laws at the last session.

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“I shall speak forth my sentiments freely and without reserve.”

Paraphrase
? I shall express my opinions freely and fully.

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sentiments n. points of view, opinions; an attitude or opinion usually influenced by emotion e.g.
1. What are your sentiments on this issue? 2. She made a speech full of lofty sentiments.

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entertain vt. to hold sth. in the mind or feelings e.g. 1. She entertains some doubts about our scheme. 2. They entertain prejudices against us.

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“This is no time for ceremony.” Paraphrase ? This is not a time for formalities; this is a time for a prompt decision and immediate actions.

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ceremony n. the formal traditions, actions, or words used to celebrate a traditional or religious event e.g.

They celebrated Easter with lavish ceremony.

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“The question before the house is one of awful moment to this country.”
Paraphrase ? The question the house is faced with is an issue of vital importance to this country.

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“And in proportion to the magnitude of the subject…”

Paraphrase
? in relation to the importance of the subject (in relation to the significance of the topic)

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magnitude n. a large size; (degree of ) importance e.g. 1. The magnitude of the epidemic was unexpectedly frightening. 2. You don't seem to appreciate the magnitude of her achievement.

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“It is only in this way that we can hope to arrive at truth, and fulfill the great responsibility which we hold to God and our country.”
Paraphrase ? Only in this way can we hope to reach the truth and perform the great commitment for which we are responsible for the sake of God and our country.

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“Should I keep back my opinions at such a time, through fear of giving offence, I should consider myself as guilty of treason toward my country, and of an act of disloyalty toward the Majesty of Heaven, which I revere above all earthly kings.” Paraphrase ? If I should remain silent at such a critical time, for fear of offending others, I should consider myself to be a man who has betrayed his own country and who has committed a sin of betraying God, whom I venerate ( 崇敬) more deeply than all kings on Earth.

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treason n. treachery to one’s country; a treacherous, i.e., and act of betraying one’s country e.g. 1. The traitor committed treason during the Anti-Japanese War. 2. The patriot would rather die than commit an offence of treason.

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Mr. President, it is natural to man to indulge in the illusions of hope. Paraphrase ? Mr. President, it is quite normal that man should allow himself to entertain delusive or false hopes. illusion n. a false idea, belief or impression; false perception e.g. 1. I have no illusions about my ability. 2. In the hot sun the surface of the road seems wet, but that is only an illusion. 3. I was under the illusion that he was honest.

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“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.” Paraphrase

? We tend to turn a blind eye to a painful reality, and listen to the song of that sea nymph until she changes us completely into beasts.

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be apt to do sth.: to be likely or have a tendency to do sth. e.g.

1. She is apt to be forgetful, careless, and quick-tempered. 2. My pen is rather apt to leak.

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siren n. (in Greek mythology) one of a number of winged women whose songs lured sailors to their destruction; woman regarded as fascinating and dangerous This sentence is actually an allusion to Homer's Odyssey, in which the enchantress Circe charms men with her song and turns them into swine.

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“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?” Paraphrase ? Are we prepared to be among those who turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to the things that are so closely related to the salvation of their own destiny? Explanation This rhetorical question is devised on the basis of the Biblical story, in which the prophet addresses those "who have eyes to see, but see not, who have ears to hear, but hear not."

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be disposed to: to want or be prepared to do sth. e.g. 1. I am not disposed to meet them at the moment. 2. You are most welcome to join us if you feel so disposed.

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their temporal salvation: salvation of their reality; salvation of their life and destiny temporal: relating to practical matters or material things; earthly, worldly e.g.

Temporal power and wealth are more important to some people than a spiritual promise of life after death.

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“I have but one lamp by which my feet are guided, and that is the lamp of experience.” Paraphrase ?I have only one lamp that guides my way forward, and that lamp is none other than that of experience. / Experience is like a lamp that lights up my way forward.

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“I know of no way of judging of the future but by the past.” Paraphrase ? As far as I know, there is no way to judge the future except by the past. / In my opinion, there is no means of judging the future except by history.

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“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?” Paraphrase ? I want very much to know what the British ministry has done for the last ten years to prove that those hopes are reasonable with which gentlemen have been delighted to comfort themselves and the house?

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solace vt. to comfort or relieve from pain, distress, trouble, etc.; give comfort or relief e.g.

1. She was distracted with grief and refused to be solaced. 2. The mayor's words solaced the grief-stricken widow.

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“Trust it not, sir; it will prove a snare to your feet.” Paraphrase ? Do not believe in it, sir; it may turn out to be something that will trap your feet and make you fall.

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snare n. a trap for catching small animals and birds, esp. one with a noose made of rope or wire; (fig.) sth. that is apt to trap or injure sb. e.g.
1. The rabbit's foot was caught in a snare. 2. Pride is a snare we must all try to avoid.

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“Suffer not yourselves to be betrayed with a kiss.” Paraphrase ? Do not allow yourself to be betrayed by somebody who kisses you to show affection. This sentence refers to the betrayal of Jesus by Judas. According to Luke 22:47-48, Judas betrays Jesus with a kiss.

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suffer vt. to allow (By the way, this usage is rare now!) e.g. 1. He knew that he must not suffer selfishness to triumph over love. 2. He is a man that never suffers interference with his plans.

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“Ask yourselves how this gracious reception of our petition comports with those warlike preparations which cover our waters and darken our land.” Paraphrase
? Consider how this kind and polite reception of our petition agrees with those military preparations that are extending over our seas and threatening the security of our land.

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gracious adj. kind, polite and generous, esp. to sb. who is socially inferior; (of God) merciful e.g. 1. The gracious hostess demonstrated her ability to provide abundant meals in dignified surroundings. 2. God is kind and gracious to all sinners who repent.

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petition n. a formal written request, esp. one signed by many people appealing to sb. in authority; a formal written application submitted to a court of law e.g.
1. The local residents signed a petition against closing the swimming pool. 2. She submitted a petition to the local court, asking for a divorce.

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comport v. to agree or be consistent with sth. e.g.

1. His statement does not comport with the fact. 2. His conduct does not comport with his position.

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“Are fleets and armies necessary to a work of love and reconciliation…These are the implements of war and subjugation — the last arguments to which kings resort.” Paraphrase ? Does a work of love and reconciliation call for fleets and armies? Have we proved so reluctant to become friends again that force must be used to retrieve our love? Let us not mislead ourselves, sir. These are the tools of war and instruments of subjugation the last arguments which kings make use of.

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be reconciled to: (cause to) become friendly again, e.g. after quarrelling; (cause to) accept reluctantly sth. unwelcome or unpleasant e.g. 1. We were finally reconciled when he apologized. 2. They are not reconciled to failure.

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“I ask gentlemen, sir, what means this martial array, if its purpose be not to force us to submission?” Paraphrase ? I ask gentlemen, sir, what this impressive display of the armed forces signifies, if it is not intended to compel us to yield to the British power and will?

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this martial array: this impressive demonstration of armed forces; armed forces in battle order

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submission n. a willingness to yield or surrender to sb., or the act of doing so e.g. 1. The enemy wanted to starve the city into submission. 2. Some parents want their children to show complete submission to their wishes.

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“They are meant for us: they can be meant for no other. They are sent over to bind and rivet upon us those chains which the British ministry have been so long forging.” Paraphrase
? These navies and armies are here to subdue(征服) and conquer us; it is impossible that they are prepared for any other. They are dispatched to tie us up and immobilize us with those chains that the British ministry have been so long making.

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rivet vt. to fasten with a short metal fastener; fix, make immobile e.g.

1. The two boards are riveted together. 2. We stood riveted to the spot.

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forge vt. to shape sth. by heating it in a fire and hammering; create by means of hard work e.g. 1. They forge swords, chains, anchors, etc. 2. They have forged an alliance.

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“We have held the subject up in every light of which it is capable; but it has been all in vain.” Paraphrase ? We have approached the subject from all perspectives possible; but all our efforts have been utterly futile.

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“Shall we resort to entreaty and humble supplication? What terms shall we find which have not already been exhausted?” Paraphrase ? Shall we rely on earnest requesting and humble supplicating? What words and expressions shall we find that have not already been used?

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entreaty n. a serious and passionate request e.g. Mary refused to get involved with him in spite of his entreaties.

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supplication n. a humble appeal to sb. who has the power to grant a request e.g. 1. He was deaf to my supplications. 2. The quake-stricken victims have supplications to the government. made urgent

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“Sir, we have done everything that could be done to avert the storm which is now coming on. We have petitioned; … and have implored its interposition to arrest the tyrannical hands of the ministry and Parliament.” Paraphrase ? Sir, we have made every possible effort to prevent the storm which is now approaching. We have submitted petitions; we have made protests and complaints; we have asked humbly and pleadingly for freedom and independence; we have thrown ourselves down on the floor before the throne, and have beseeched her to interpose or take action to stop the tyrannical rule of the British ministry and Parliament, i.e. to prevent them from obtaining obedience by force or threats.

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remonstrate vi. to make a protest or lodge a complaint about sb. or sth. e.g. 1. I remonstrated with him about his rudeness. 2. We remonstrate against cruelty to children.

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supplicate v. (fml.) to ask sb. humbly or pleadingly for sth. e.g. 1. The defendant supplicated for pardon. 2. He supplicated her to forgive him.

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prostrate oneself: to throw oneself onto the floor and lie face down, esp. as a sign of submission or worship e.g.

1. The slaves prostrated themselves at their master's feet. 2. The pilgrims prostrated themselves before the altar.

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implore vt. to beseech, ask or beg sb. earnestly e.g. 1. I implored her forgiveness. 2. They implored her to stay.

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“…and we have been spurned with contempt from the foot of the throne!” Paraphrase ? The throne rejected our petitions and supplications scornfully and contemptuously.

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spurn vt. to reject or refuse sb. or sth. scornfully or contemptuously e.g.

1. He spurned my offer of help. 2. She spurned his advances, so he became a spurned lover.

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“In vain, after these things, may we indulge the fond hope of peace and reconciliation.” Paraphrase ? Since all our previous efforts proved futile, our fondly cherished hope of arriving at a peaceful settlement and reconciling with Britain may never come true.

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“If we wish to be free, if we mean to preserve inviolate those inestimable privileges for which we have been so long contending, … I repeat it, sir, we must fight! An appeal to arms and to the God of Hosts is all that is left us!” Paraphrase If we desire to enjoy freedom, if we intend to permanently keep alive those invaluable privileges for which we have been fighting hard for such a long time, if we are disposed not basely to give up the sacred struggle to which we have so long devoted ourselves, and which we have bound ourselves by a solemn vow never to abandon until the splendid goal of our struggle is reached — we must fight! I say it again, sir, we must fight! A resort to arms and an

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inviolate adj. free from violation, injury, or outrage; undisturbed, untouched; unbroken e.g. 1. We must preserve these sacred principles inviolate. 2. Our promise remains inviolate.

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contend v. to struggle in opposition; compete, vie; assert or maintain earnestly e.g. 1. Our fighters contended with the enemy for control of the fort. 2. That excellent student is contending for the first prize. 3. The businessman contended that taxes were too high.

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“They tell us, sir, that we are weak — unable to cope with so formidable an adversary.”
Paraphrase ? They warn us, sir, that we are feeble — not able to overcome such a frightening enemy.

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formidable adj. causing fear or great anxiety; difficult to deal with or overcome e.g. 1. The man's formidable appearance frightened the child. 2. They were faced with formidable obstacles.

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“Shall we gather strength by irresolution and inaction? 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 bound us hand and foot?” Paraphrase ? Shall we become strong or powerful by hesitating and taking no action at all? Shall we obtain the resources (e.g. human power, military weapons, etc.) of successful resistance by lying weakly and lazily on our backs, and by cherishing the false illusion of hope until our enemies have riveted chains on us?

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supinely adv. lying on the back with the face upward; showing a weak unwillingness to act e.g. 1. The little boy is lying supinely on the bed, staring at the ceiling. 2. He accepted the unfair treatment supinely.

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phantom n. a ghost, ghostly image; unreal or imagined thing, as seen in a dream or vision e.g. 1. He said that he saw the phantom of his dead father. 2. It is harmful to hug delusive phantoms.

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“There is a just God who presides over the destinies of nations and who will raise up friends to fight our battles for us.” Paraphrase ? There is a righteous God who controls the fates of nations and who will gather friends to join us in our battles and fight for us.

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“The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone; it is to the vigilant, the active, the brave.” Paraphrase ? The victory of the battle, sir, does not belong to the strong alone; it belongs to the vigilant, the active, the brave. Note The first half of the sentence "The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone" is part of a quotation from Ecclesiastes 9:11, "The race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong."

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“It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, "Peace, peace" — but there is no peace.” Paraphrase ? It is futile, sir, to make the situation less serious. Although gentlemen may keep shouting, "Peace, peace", there is no longer peace.

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extenuate vt. to diminish the seriousness of e.g. 1. Nothing can extenuate such appalling behavior. 2. No excuse can extenuate his crime.

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“The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms!” Paraphrase ? The strong wind that is fast approaching from the north will bring us the great news of open resistance.

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clash n. a loud metallic sound e.g. 1. The music ended with a clash of cymbals. 2. The clash of swords woke me up in the early hours of the day.

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resound vi. to produce a long reverberating sound e.g. 1. The church bells resounded throughout the small town. 2. Happy voices resounded in the streets.

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“Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle?” Paraphrase ? Our brothers are already in the battlefield! Why are we standing here doing nothing? Note The word brethren, which is a plural form of the word brother, is used as a form of address to members of an organization or religious group.

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“Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery?” Paraphrase ? Is life so precious and valuable, or peace so charming and gratifying that in order to live in peace we have to be bound hand and foot and reduced to slavery? Note This is one more instance of a rhetorical question, meaning: though life is precious, and peace enjoyable, they must by no means be obtained at the sacrifice of freedom.

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“I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” Paraphrase ? I do not know what way of acting others may take, but as far as I am concerned, if not given freedom, I would rather die!

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第1段 中文译文 议长先生:我比任何人更钦佩刚刚在议会上发言的先生 们的爱国主义精神和才干。但是,对同样的问题,智者见智, 仁者见仁。因此,尽管我的观点与他们大相径庭,但是我仍要 把自己的心里话一吐为快,并希望不要因此而被看做是对他们 大不敬:现在不是讲客套的时候。

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第1段 中文译文 摆在议会面前的问题关系到国家的存亡。我认为,这是关系到 享受自由还是蒙受奴役的关键问题,而且正因为事关重大,我 们的辩论就要做到各抒己见。只有这样,我们才能弄清事实的 真相,才能不辜负上帝和祖国赋予我们的责任。在这种时刻, 如果怕得罪人而闭口不言,我认为就是叛国,就是比对世上所 有国君更为神圣的上帝的不忠行为。

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第2段 中文译文 议长先生,对希望抱有幻觉是人的天性。我们往往紧闭 双眼不去正视痛苦的现实,而是倾听海妖蛊惑人心的歌声,让 她把我们变成禽兽。在为自由而进行艰苦卓绝的斗争中,这难 道是聪明人的所作所为吗?难道我们愿意为对获得拯救如此至 关重要的事情视而不见,听而不闻吗?就我来说,无论精神上 有多么痛苦,我仍愿意获悉全部的真相和最坏的事态,并为之 做好充分准备。

Detailed Reading
第3段 中文译文 我只有一盏指路明灯,那就是经验之灯。除了过去的经 验,我没有其他的方法去判断未来。依据过去的经验,我倒希 望知道,十年来英国政府的所作所为,凭什么使得各位先生有 理由满怀希望,并欣然用来安慰自己和议会呢?难道就是最近 接受我们请愿时的那种狡诈的微笑吗?不要相信这种微笑,阁 下,事实证明那是放置在您脚下的陷阱。

Detailed Reading
第3段 中文译文 不要被人家的亲吻把自己出卖了!请你们扪心自问,接受我们 请愿时的和蔼亲善与遍布海陆疆域的大规模备战怎么会相称 呢?难道出于对我们的爱护和和解,就有必要动用战舰和军队 吗?难道我们流露过绝不和解的愿望,因此结果为了重新赢得 我们的爱,而必须诉诸武力吗?我们不要再欺骗自己了,阁 下,这些都是战争和征服的工具,是国王们采取的最后的辩解 手段。

Detailed Reading
第4段 中文译文 我要请问先生们,阁下,这些战争的部署如果不是为了 迫使我们俯首称臣,那又意味着什么?先生们能够指出还有其 他的动机吗?难道在世界的这个地方,还有什么敌人值得大不 列颠如此兴师动众,调集如此庞大的海陆军队吗?没有了,阁 下,什么敌人也没有。他们完全是针对我们的,而不是别人。 他们是派来给我们紧紧套上英国政府长期以来铸造的锁链的。

Detailed Reading
第5段 中文译文 我们用什么来抵抗呢?还要辩论吗?阁下,我们已经辩 论了十年。难道对这个问题我们还有什么新鲜观点吗?什么 也没有。我们已经把各个方面全考虑过了,但是一切都徒劳 枉然。难道我们只得苦苦哀告,微言乞求吗?难道我们还能 期望找到什么没有穷尽的说法吗?阁下,我恳求您,我们千 万不要再自欺欺人了。

Detailed Reading
第6段 中文译文
阁下,为了躲避这场即将降临的风暴,一切该做的事情 我们都已经做了。我们请愿过,我们抗议过,我们哀求过:我 们曾拜倒在御座之前,恳求制止国会和内阁的残暴行径。我们 的请愿遭到蔑视,我们的抗议招致格外的镇压和侮辱,我们的 哀求被置之不理,我们被不以为然地从御座前一脚踢开了。全 都枉然,事已至此,我们还能沉湎于愚蠢的希望之中吗?

Detailed Reading
第6段 中文译文

我们什么希望都没有余地了。假如我们希望获得自由,并维护 我们长期以来为之献身的崇高权力,假如我们不愿意卑鄙地放 弃我们多年来的斗争,不获全胜,绝不收兵,那么,我们必须 战斗!我再重复一遍,我们必须战斗!我们只有诉诸武力,只 有求助于千军万马之主的上帝。

Detailed Reading
第7段 中文译文 阁下,他们说我们太弱小了 —— 无法抵挡这么强大的敌 手。但是,我们什么时候才能更强大呢?是下周,还是明年? 难道要等我们被彻底解除武装,家家户户都驻扎了英国士兵的 时候吗?难道我们靠犹豫不决,无所作为来积聚力量吗?难道 我们高枕而卧,抱有虚无缥缈的希望,等到敌人捆住了我们的 手脚,就能找到有效抵抗敌人的良策吗?阁下,只要我们恰如 其分地利用好自然之神恩赐给我们的力量,我们并不弱小。

Detailed Reading
第7段 中文译文 一旦300万人民在自己的国土上武装起来为了自由的神圣事业 而战,那么敌人派遣来的任何武装力量都无法战胜我们。此 外,我们并非孤军作战,公正的上帝主宰着各国的命运,他 将号召朋友们为我们而战。阁下,战争的胜利并非只属于强 者,它将属于那些机警、主动和勇敢的人们。何况我们已经 别无选择。

Detailed Reading
第7段 中文译文 即使我们没有骨气,想退出战斗,也为时已晚。退路已被切 断,除非甘愿蒙受屈辱和奴役。囚禁我们的锁链已经铸成, 叮叮当当的镣铐声已经在波士顿平原上回荡,战争已经无可 避免——让它来吧!我重复一遍,阁下,让它来吧!

Detailed Reading
第8段 中文译文 企图使事态得到缓和是徒劳的,阁下。各位先生可以高 喊,“和平,和平”——但是根本没有和平。战争实际上已开 始了!从北方刮来的风暴将把武器的铿锵的撞击声传到我们的 耳中。我们的兄弟们已经上了战场!我们为什么还要站在这儿 袖手旁观?先生们希望的是什么?他们会得到什么?难道生命 就这么可贵,和平就这么甜美,竟值得以锁链和奴役做代价? 全能的上帝啊,制止他们这样做吧!我不知道别人会如何行事 :至于我,不自由,毋宁死!

Consolidation Activities
Text Comprehension

Writing Strategies
Language Work Translation Oral Activities Writing

Listening Exercises

Explaining | Synonyms | Filling | Sentences | Grammar | Cloze

Explain the underlined part in each sentence in your own words. 1. For my own part, I consider it as nothing less than a question of freedom or slavery. the very same thing as 2. And in proportion to the magnitude of the subject ought to be the freedom of the debate. appropriately in agreement with

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3. We have held the subject up in every light of which it is capable.

considered and tried every means in order to deal with the subject 4. …if we make a proper use of those means which the God of nature hath placed in our power.
has placed at our disposal

Explaining | Synonyms | Filling | Sentences | Grammar | Cloze

5. Three millions of people, armed in the holy cause of liberty, … with liberty as our ultimate aim to fight for 6. The battle, sir, is not to the strong alone. is not destined to be won by

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II. Fill in each blank with one of the two words from each pair in their appropriate forms and note the difference of meaning between them.

solace

console

Console suggests the attempt to make up for a loss by offering something in its place, as well as the effort of one person to mitigate the serious grief felt by another. Solace might sound more precious than comfort and it suggests a tender intensity of fellow-feeling.

1. She was consoled _______ to think that she at least had an understanding husband to turn to. 2. The soldiers attempted to ______ solace his wounded comrades by minimizing the extent of their injuries.

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console him for losing the prize by taking him 3. They tried to_______ to the theatre. 4. They _______ solaced their wretchedness, however, by duets after supper.

Explaining | Synonyms | Filling | Sentences | Grammar | Cloze

petition

plead

Both words refer to a humble, deferential, urgent, or formal request for help. Plead suggests a dignified humility, stressing an urgency. Petition suggests a formal address to authority, usually referring to the backing up of a request by the signed approval of others.

1. All the four convicts _______ pleaded guilty but appealed for leniency. 2. In the face of questioning by the police, he _______ pleaded ignorance of the bottle of white powder in his suitcase.

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3. The Church of Scotland ________ petitioned the home secretary for stronger controls on adolescent drug use. 4. All delegates to the convention were petitioning ________ the government to take tough measures against illegal coalmining. More… request: to ask for something politely (not used with the actual words spoken). appeal: to ask strongly for help, support, money, etc. beseech: to ask eagerly and anxiously implore: to ask someone in a begging manner for sth. or doing sth.

Explaining | Synonyms | Filling | Sentences | Grammar | Cloze

base (adj.)

mean

Both words are alike in describing persons or actions regarded as being far below common worth or dignity. Mean suggests a contemptible smallness of mind, or a petty, ungenerous nature, while base is used to condemn what is openly evil, selfish, dishonourable or otherwise immoral.

1. He is the _______ meanest person I ever know. He is never willing to spend a cent on other people. 2. Rapton reached the final; that was no mean ____ achievement, considering all 50 classes took part in the competition.

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3. The soldier was accused of base ____ cowardice during the confrontation. 4. The cheat was ____ base enough to swindle a sick widow out of her life's savings.

Explaining | Synonyms | Filling | Sentences | Grammar | Cloze

delusive

misleading

The two words refer to the giving or receiving of mistaken impressions. Misleading is restricted to something that is apt to give a false impression, and it can also apply to great or small potential misapprehensions, whether fostered intentionally, unintentionally, or without any intent whatever. Delusive suggests mistaken impressions or a self-imposed belief that corresponds to one's own wishes or needs.

1. A terminally ill patient usually has a delusive delusive faith in a _______ wonder drug. 2. There is nothing true about such an expectation; it is only _______ delusive and vain.

Explaining | Synonyms | Filling | Sentences | Grammar | Cloze

3. It was a misleading ________ advertisement that deliberately left out the drug's side effects. 4. The ambassador referred to the report as deceitful and misleading misleading. ________


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