Gettysburg Address

Rhetorical Outline


I. Past Conception

A. Founding of the nation

B. Character of the Nation

1. Conceived in liberty

2. Dedicated to equality

II. Present Dedication

A. Past Present: Civil war as test of nationís quality

B. Immediate Present:

1. Place: Meeting on battlefield

2. Purpose: Dedicate the field as memorial

a. Act of dedication

b. Propriety of act

C. Immediate Future

1. Disqualification of purpose

a. Inability to dedicate

b. Already dedicated by the dead

2. Pivotal antithesis

III. Future Purpose

A. Pivotal antithesis: our words vs. their act

B. Dedication of the living

1. Dedication

2. Amplification

3. Declaration of purpose:

a. New birth of freedom

b. Government of the people