Abraham Lincoln's "Second Inaugural Address"

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“The pattern of the prodigal is: rebellion, ruin, repentance, reconciliation, restoration” (Edwin Louis Cole). Abraham Lincoln’s “Second Inaugural Address” is a speech that highlights every point in Cole’s quote. He, Lincoln, talks about how the south manages to rebel, how their economy will be left in ruin, how they will repent and be forgiven by both God and the North, how the North and the South will reconcile, and finally he talks of how the nation will move on to restoration. Abraham Lincoln’s “Second Inaugural Address” emphasizes the reconciliation of a torn apart nation by appealing to pathos, logos, and ethos and by using diction to appeal to the listener’s emotion.
The American Civil War began on April 12, 1861 when the Southern United States seceded from the union. The first battle, taking only thirty-four hours, caused Lincoln to officially rally troops against the South. Most Northern Americans would eventually learn to love Lincoln’s courage; however, many Southern Americans would despise Lincoln. Throughout the civil war many lives were lost, and many families were torn apart. Lincoln would remain a strong figure throughout the war. He would give his people hope, he would give his people courage, and he would give his people strength. Around the time the Civil War was drawing to a close, Lincoln was being reelected. The general of the Confederacy, Robert E. Lee, surrendered after a battle in Virginia. His troops surrendered in April, a little over a
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