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25 Oratory Quotes

The passions are the only orators that always persuade: they are, as it were, a natural art, the rules of which are infallible; and the simplest man with passion is more persuasive than the most eloquent without it.

Francois Duc de la Rochefoucauld Quotes , Source: Maxims (no. 9)

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Fire in each eye, and papers in each hand, They rave, recite, and madden round the land.

Alexander Pope Quotes , Source: Prologue to Satires (l. 5)

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Solon wished everybody to be ready to take everybody else's part; but surely Chilo was wiser in holding that public affairs go best when the laws have much attention and the orators none.

Rev. John Beacon Quotes , Source: Letter to Earl Grey on Reform

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Whatever we conceive well we express clearly, and words flow with ease. [Fr., Ce que l'on concoit bien s'enonce clairement, Et les mots pour le dire arrivent aisement.]

Nicolas Boileau-Despreaux Quotes , Source: L'Art Poetique (I, 153)

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For rhetoric, he could not ope His mouth, but out there flew a trope.

Samuel Butler (1) Quotes , Source: Hudibras (pt. I, canto I, l. 81)

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The Orator persuades and carries all with him, he knows not how; the Rhetorician can prove that he ought to have persuaded and carried all with him.

Thomas Carlyle Quotes , Source: Essays--Characteristics

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Its Constitution--the glittering and sounding generalities of natural right which make up the Declaration of Independence.

Rufus Choate Quotes , Source: Letter to the Maine Whig Committee

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He mouths a sentence as curs mouth a bone.

Charles Churchill Quotes , Source: The Rosciad (l. 322)

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I asked of my dear friend Orator Prig: "What's the first part of oratory?" He said, "A great wig." "And what is the second?" Then, dancing a jig And bowing profoundly, he said, "A great wig." "And what is the third?" Then he snored like a pig, And puffing his cheeks out, he replied, "A great wig."

George Colman ("The Younger") Quotes , Source: Orator Prig

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We fear that the glittering generalities of the speaker have left an impression more delightful than permanent. - Franklin J. Dickman,

Franklin J. Dickman Quotes , Source: Review of Lecture by Rufus Choate--Providence Journal

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There is no true orator who is not a hero.

Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes , Source: Letters and Social Aims--Eloquence

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Glittering generalities! They are blazing ubiquities.

Ralph Waldo Emerson Quotes , Source: Remark on Choate's words

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You'd scarce expect one of my age To speak in public on the stage; And if I chance to fall below Demosthenes or Cicero, Don't view me with a critic's eye, But pass my imperfections by. Large streams from little fountains flow, Tall oaks from little acorns grow.

David Everett Quotes , Source: Lines for a School Declamation

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Yet through delivery orators succeed, I feel that I am far behind indeed. [Ger., Allein der Vortrag macht des Redners Gluck, Ich fuhl es wohl noch bin ich weit zuruck.]

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Quotes , Source: Faust (I, 1, 194)

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With little art, clear wit and sense Suggest their own delivery. [Ger., Es tragt Verstand und rechter Sinn, Mit wenig Kunst sich selber vor.]

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe Quotes , Source: Faust (I, 1, 198)

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It makes a great difference whether Davus or a hero speaks. [Lat., Intererit multum Davusne loquatur an heros.]

Horace (Quintus Horatius Flaccus) Quotes , Source: Ars Poetica (CXIV)

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The object of oratory alone is not truth, but persuasion.

Thomas Babington Macaulay Quotes , Source: Essay on Athenian Orators

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Thence to the famous orators repair, Those ancient, whose resistless eloquence Wielded at will that fierce democratie, Shook the Arsenal, and fulmined over Greece, To Macedon, and Artaxerxes' throne.

John Milton Quotes , Source: Paradise Regained (bk. IV, l. 267)

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The capital of the orator is in the bank of the highest sentimentalities and the purest enthusiasms.

Edward Griffin Parker Quotes , Source: The Golden Age of American Oratory (ch. I)

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Besides, as is usually the case, we are much more affected by the words which we hear, for though what you read in books may be more pointed, yet there is something in the voice, the look, the carriage, and even the gesture of the speaker, that makes a deeper impression upon the mind. [Lat., Praeterea multo magis, ut vulgo dicitur viva vox afficit: nam licet acriora sint, quae legas, ultius tamen in ammo sedent, quae pronuntiatio, vultus, habitus, gestus dicentis adfigit.]

Pliny the Younger (Caius Caecilius Secundus) Quotes , Source: Epistles (II, 3)

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When Demosthenes was asked what was the first part of Oratory, he answered, "Action," and which was the second, he replied, "action," and which was the third, he still answered "Action."

Plutarch Quotes , Source: Morals--Lives of the Ten Orators

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It is a thing of no great difficulty to raise objections against another man's oration,--nay, it is a very easy matter; but to produce a better in its place is a work extremely troublesome.

Plutarch Quotes , Source: Of Hearing (VI)

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Very good orators, when they are out, they will spit; and for lovers, lacking--God warn us!--matter, the cleanliest shift is to kiss.

William Shakespeare Quotes , Source: As You Like It (Rosalind at IV, i)

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If you did wed my sister for her wealth, Then for her wealth's sake use her with more kindness: Or if you like elsewhere, do it by stealth; Muffle your false love with some show of blindness: Let not my sister read it in your eye; Be not thy tongue thy own shame's orator; Look sweet, spear fair, become disloyalty; Apparel vice like virtue's harbinger; Bear a fair presence, though your heart be tainted; Teach sin the carriage of a holy saint; Be secret-false: what need she be acquainted?

William Shakespeare Quotes , Source: The Comedy of Errors (Luciana at III, ii)

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I come not, friends, to steal away your hearts. I am no orator, as Brutus is, But (as you know me all) a plain blunt man That love my friend; and that they know full well That gave me public leave to speak of him.

William Shakespeare Quotes , Source: Julius Caesar (Antony at III, ii)

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