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Sender: Mark Twain Forum <[log in to unmask]>
From: Harold Bush <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Fri, 30 Jul 2010 09:02:48 -0500
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Here's a great quote by James Russell Lowell, circa 1864; does this remind
anyone of MT?? "Their leaders were trained to a method of oratory which
relied for its effect rather on the moral sense than the understanding. . .
. That penetrating fire ran in and roused those primary instincts that make
their lair in the dens and caverns of the mind.  What is called the great
popular heart was awakened, that indefinable something which may be,
according to circumstances, the highest reason or the most brutish unreason.
. . . One of the things particu-larly admirable in the public utterances of
President Lincoln is a certain tone of familiar dignity, which, while it is
perhaps the most difficult attainment of mere style, is also no doubtful
indication of personal character.  There must be something essentially noble
in an elective ruler who can descend to the level of confidential ease
without forfeiting respect, something very manly in one who can break
through the etiquette of his conventional rank and trust himself to the
reason and intelligence of those who have elected him.  No higher compliment
was ever paid to a nation than the simple confidence, the fireside
plainness, with which Mr. Lincoln always addresses himself to the reason of
the American people."

everybody drinks water, saith Sam.

Harold K. Bush, Ph.D
Professor of English
Saint Louis University
St. Louis, MO  63108
314-977-3616 (w); 314-771-6795 (h)