American Rhetoric: Movie Speech

"Gods and Generals" (2003)


General Robert E. Lee Accepts Command of the Citizen's Army of Virginia

Audio mp3 delivered by Robert Duvall


General Lee: Mr. President, Gentlemen of the convention, [I'm] profoundly impressed by the solemnity of the occasion for which, I must say, I was not prepared.

I accept the position assigned me by your partiality.

I would have much preferred had your choice fallen on an abler man.


But trusting to Almighty God, an approving conscience, and the aid of my fellow citizens, I devote myself to the service of my native State, in whose behalf alone will I ever again draw my sword.

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