The five known manuscripts of the Gettysburg Address in Lincoln's hand differ in a number of details, and also differ from contemporary newspaper reprints of the speech.
Neither is it clear where stood the platform from which Lincoln delivered the address.
Percival, music by Alfred Delaney), sung by Choir selected for the occasion Benediction, by Reverend H. But the duty to which you have called me must be performed;—grant me, I pray you, your indulgence and your sympathy.
But they, I am sure, will join us in saying, as we bid farewell to the dust of these martyr-heroes, that wheresoever throughout the civilized world the accounts of this great warfare are read, and down to the latest period of recorded time, in the glorious annals of our common country, there will be no brighter page than that which relates the Battles of Gettysburg.
Despite the historical significance of Lincoln's speech, modern scholars disagree as to its exact wording, and contemporary transcriptions published in newspaper accounts of the event and even handwritten copies by Lincoln himself differ in their wording, punctuation, and structure.
Its text differs, however, from the written versions prepared by Lincoln before and after his speech.Not even the day's primary speech, Lincoln's carefully crafted address came to be seen as one of the greatest and most influential statements of American national purpose.In just 271 words, beginning with the now iconic phrase "Four score and seven years ago," referring to the signing of the Declaration of Independence 87 years earlier, Lincoln described the US as a nation "conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal," and represented the Civil War as a test that would determine whether such a nation, the Union sundered by the secession crisis, Despite the prominent place of the speech in the history and popular culture of the United States, its exact wording is disputed.Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live.It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.(It is difficult to find a single obviously classical reference in any of his speeches.) Lincoln had mastered the sound of the King James Bible so completely that he could recast abstract issues of constitutional law in Biblical terms, making the proposition that Texas and New Hampshire should be forever bound by a single post office sound like something right out of Genesis."Several theories have been advanced by Lincoln scholars to explain the provenance of Lincoln's famous phrase "government of the people, by the people, for the people".Despite many claims, there is no evidence a similar phrase appears in the Prologue to John Wycliffe's 1384 English translation of the Bible.C., he was feverish and weak, with a severe headache.A protracted illness followed, which included a vesicular rash; it was diagnosed as a mild case of smallpox. Music, by the Marine Band ("Old Hundred"), directed by Francis Scala Oration, by Hon.The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here.It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.