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biography
American history
Patrick Henry: First Among Patriots
 
 
Author
Thomas S. Kidd.
Publisher Basic Books  
Format hardcover
Product Dimensions 9.5 x 6.4 x 1 inches
ISBN 9780465009282
Pages/Publication Date 306/2011
Daedalus Item Code 30257
This item is not available.
Description
Most Americans know Patrick Henry as an orator whose fiery pronouncement "Give me liberty or give me death!" rallied American defiance to the British Crown. But Henry's speaking skills—sharpened in the small towns and courtrooms of colonial Virginia—are only part of his largely forgotten legacy, as historian Thomas Kidd explains here. Henry cherished a vision of America as a virtuous republic with a clearly circumscribed central government—ideals that brought him into conflict with other founders and were crystallized in his vociferous opposition to the Constitution. Kidd illuminates one of our most radical, passionate founders, noting that until we understand Henry, we will neglect many of the Revolution's animating values.

"We've long needed this book, a fresh look at the life of Patrick Henry, the 'forest-born Demosthenes' who became one of the most eminent of American patriots, and one of the greatest orators and phrasemakers of early American history. His historical reputation has suffered somewhat because of his opposition to the Constitution, but as Thomas Kidd shows in this vivid and lucid new biography, that judgment fails to do him justice. Indeed, his fears of the Constitution's tendency toward consolidation and empire turned out to be well-founded, and the principal themes of his life, including his emphasis upon the cultivation of virtue and the protection of limited government, have never been more relevant. May this fine book lead to a long-overdue reconsideration of a great but neglected figure."—Wilfred McClay

 
 
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