Rushville Republican

Columns

September 3, 2013

Is wordsmithing a lost art?

(Continued)

Despite using what we, today, might call “high-flown rhetoric,” Gordon gives an immediacy to his writing that easily takes the reader back to the postwar years of the American Civil War – when sectional bitterness was still a fact and when the lingering vestiges of Reconstruction were still on the minds of millions of Americans and reunions of the Blue and Gray were regular occurrences which attracted thousands of veterans. To John B. Gordon the Civil War was still very real, even more than thirty years after Appomattox. But notice his style of writing! Clear, understandable, even if not concise by modern standards.

The point is that everybody of the generation who fought the war wrote that way. And it is worth our time to reflect on how well the writers of that time expressed themselves. If only we could all do as well today.

That’s -30- for this week.

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