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VOA慢速英语2009年-THE MAKING OF A NATION - American Hist

时间:2010-01-11 05:21来源:互联网 提供网友:斗破苍穹   字体: [ ]
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Welcome to THE MAKING OF A NATION – American history in VOA Special English.

On April ninth, eighteen sixty-five, Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered his army to Union General Ulysses Grant. Within weeks, the Civil War would be over.

When people in Washington learned of Lee's surrender, they hurried to the White House. The crowd wanted to hear from President Abraham Lincoln.

The speech he gave would be one of his last, as Kay Gallant1 and Harry2 Monroe explain this week in our series.

VOICE ONE:

One of the last portraits taken of President Lincoln

President Lincoln spoke3 several days after General Lee's surrender. The people expected a victory speech. But Lincoln gave them something else.

Already, he was moving forward from victory to the difficult times ahead. The southern rebellion was over. Now, he faced the task of re-building the Union. Lincoln did not want to punish the South. He wanted to re-join the ties that the Civil War had broken. So, when the people of the North expected a speech of victory, he gave them a speech of reconstruction4, instead.

On the night of April eleventh, Lincoln appeared before a crowd outside the White House. He held a candle in one hand and his speech in the other.

VOICE TWO:

"Fellow citizens," Lincoln said. "We meet this evening not in sorrow, but in gladness of heart. The surrender of the main army of the Confederacy gives hope of a righteous and speedy peace. The joy cannot be held back. By these recent successes, we have had pressed more closely upon us the question of reconstruction.

"We all agree," Lincoln continued, "that the so-called seceded5 states are out of their correct relation with the Union. We also agree that what the government is trying to do is get these states back into their correct relation.

"I believe it is not only possible, but in fact easier to do this without deciding the legal question of whether these states have ever been out of the Union. Finding themselves safely at home, it would be of no importance whether they had ever been away."

VOICE ONE:

There was cheering and applause when President Lincoln finished, but less than when he began. The speech had been too long and too detailed6 to please the crowd. Lincoln, however, believed it a success. He hoped he had made the country understand one thing: the great need to forget hatred7 and bitterness in the difficult time of re-building that would follow the war.

The president continued to discuss his ideas on reconstruction over the next few days. On Friday, April fourteenth, he agreed to put this work aside for a while.

In the afternoon, he took his wife Mary for a long drive away from the city. In the evening, they would go to the theater.

VOICE TWO:

One of the popular plays of the time, called "Our American Cousin," was being performed at Ford's Theater, not far from the White House. The Secretary of War did not want the Lincolns to go alone. He ordered an army officer to go with them.

The President and Misses Lincoln sat in special seats at Ford's Theater. The presidential box was above and to one side of the stage. A guard always stood outside the door to the box. On this night, however, the guard did not remain. He left the box unprotected.

VOICE ONE:

A picture representing the shooting of President Lincoln at Ford's Theater

President Lincoln settled down in his seat to enjoy the play. As he did so, a man came to the door of the box. He carried a gun in one hand and a knife in the other. The man entered the presidential box quietly. He slowly raised the gun. He aimed it at the back of Lincoln's head. He fired.

Then the man jumped from the box to the stage three meters below. Many in the theater recognized him. He was an actor: John Wilkes Booth.

Booth broke his leg when he hit the stage floor. But he pulled himself up, shouted "Sic semper tyrannis!" -- "Thus ever to tyrants8!" -- and ran out the door. He got on a horse, and was gone.

VOICE TWO:

The attack was so quick that the audience did not know what had happened. Then a woman shouted, "The president has been shot!"

Lincoln had fallen forward in his seat, unconscious. Someone asked if it was possible to move him to the White House. A young army doctor said no. The president's wound was terrible. He would die long before reaching the White House.

So Lincoln was moved to a house across the street from Ford's Theater. A doctor tried to remove the bullet from the president's head. He could not. Nothing could be done, except wait. The end was only hours away.

VOICE ONE:

A print showing President Lincoln on his death bed

Cabinet members began to arrive, while wild reports spread through the city: the Confederates had declared war again! There was fighting in the streets!

An official of the War Department described the situation. "The extent of the plot was unknown. From so horrible a beginning, what might come next. How far would the bloody9 work go. The safety of Washington must be looked after. The people must be told. The assassin and his helpers must be captured."

VOICE TWO:

Early the next morning, April fifteenth, Abraham Lincoln died. A prayer was said over his body. His eyes were closed.

The news went out by telegraph to cities and towns across the country. People read the words, but could not believe them. To millions of Americans, Abraham Lincoln's death was a personal loss. They had come to think of him as more than the President of the United States. He was a trusted friend.

People hung black cloth on their doors in sorrow. Even the South mourned for Lincoln, its former enemy. Southern General Joe Johnston said: "Mr. Lincoln was the best friend we had. His death is the worst thing that could happen for the South."

VOICE ONE:

Messages of regret came from around the world.

British labor10 groups said they could never forget the things Lincoln had said about working people. Things such as: "The strongest tie of human sympathy should be one uniting all working people of all nations and tongues."

A group representing hundreds of French students sent this message:

"In President Lincoln we mourn a fellow citizen. There are no longer any countries shut up in narrow frontiers. Our country is everywhere where there are neither masters nor slaves. Wherever people live in liberty or fight for it. We look to the other side of the ocean to learn how a people which has known how to make itself free, knows how to preserve its freedom."

The assassination11 of Abraham Lincoln touched the imagination of America's writers. Many tried to put their feelings into words. Walt Whitman wrote several poems of mourning. Here is part of one of them, "O Captain! My Captain!"

READER:

Here captain! Dear father!

This arm beneath your head!

It is some dream that on the deck,

You've fallen cold and dead.

My captain does not answer, his lips are pale and still,

My father does not feel my arm, he has no pulse nor will.

The ship is anchor'd safe and sound, its voyage closed and done,

From fearful trip the victor ship comes in with object won;

Exult12 o shores, and ring o bells!

But I with mournful tread,

Walk the deck my captain lies,

Fallen cold and dead.

VOICE TWO:

Walt Whitman

Abraham Lincoln was assassinated13 in the spring. That is the time of year when lilac plants burst into flower throughout much of the United States. One of Walt Whitman's most beautiful poems in honor of Lincoln is called, "When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloomed." Here is part of that poem.

READER:

When lilacs last in the dooryard bloom'd

And the great star early droop'd in the western sky in the night,

I mourned, and yet shall mourn with ever-returning spring.

Ever-returning spring, trinity sure to me you bring,

Lilac blooming perennial14 and drooping15 star in the west,

And thought of him I love. . .

Coffin16 that passes through lanes and streets,

Through day and night with the great cloud darkening the land. . .

With the countless17 torches lit,

With the silent sea of faces and the unbared heads. . .

With the tolling18, tolling bells' perpetual clang,

Here, coffin that slowly passes,

I give you my sprig of lilac.

(MUSIC)

ANNOUNCER:

Our program was written by Harold Berman and Frank Beardsley. The narrators were Kay Gallant and Harry Monroe, and the poems were read by Shep O'Neal. You can find transcripts19, MP3s and podcasts of our programs, plus historical images, at voaspecialenglish.com. And you can follow us on Twitter at VOA Learning English. Join us again next week for THE MAKING OF A NATION -- an American history series in VOA Special English.
___

This is program #117 of THE MAKING OF A NATION

 


点击收听单词发音收听单词发音  

1 gallant 66Myb     
adj.英勇的,豪侠的;(向女人)献殷勤的
参考例句:
  • Huang Jiguang's gallant deed is known by all men. 黄继光的英勇事迹尽人皆知。
  • These gallant soldiers will protect our country.这些勇敢的士兵会保卫我们的国家的。
2 harry heBxS     
vt.掠夺,蹂躏,使苦恼
参考例句:
  • Today,people feel more hurried and harried.今天,人们感到更加忙碌和苦恼。
  • Obama harried business by Healthcare Reform plan.奥巴马用医改掠夺了商界。
3 spoke XryyC     
n.(车轮的)辐条;轮辐;破坏某人的计划;阻挠某人的行动 v.讲,谈(speak的过去式);说;演说;从某种观点来说
参考例句:
  • They sourced the spoke nuts from our company.他们的轮辐螺帽是从我们公司获得的。
  • The spokes of a wheel are the bars that connect the outer ring to the centre.辐条是轮子上连接外圈与中心的条棒。
4 reconstruction 3U6xb     
n.重建,再现,复原
参考例句:
  • The country faces a huge task of national reconstruction following the war.战后,该国面临着重建家园的艰巨任务。
  • In the period of reconstruction,technique decides everything.在重建时期,技术决定一切。
5 seceded 1624ae4cad0ece80c313df9c7f11bfc6     
v.脱离,退出( secede的过去式和过去分词 )
参考例句:
  • The Republic of Panama seceded from Colombia in 1903. 巴拿马共和国于1903年脱离哥伦比亚。
  • One of the states has seceded from the federation. 有一个州已从联邦中退出。 来自辞典例句
6 detailed xuNzms     
adj.详细的,详尽的,极注意细节的,完全的
参考例句:
  • He had made a detailed study of the terrain.他对地形作了缜密的研究。
  • A detailed list of our publications is available on request.我们的出版物有一份详细的目录备索。
7 hatred T5Gyg     
n.憎恶,憎恨,仇恨
参考例句:
  • He looked at me with hatred in his eyes.他以憎恨的眼光望着我。
  • The old man was seized with burning hatred for the fascists.老人对法西斯主义者充满了仇恨。
8 tyrants b6c058541e716c67268f3d018da01b5e     
专制统治者( tyrant的名词复数 ); 暴君似的人; (古希腊的)僭主; 严酷的事物
参考例句:
  • The country was ruled by a succession of tyrants. 这个国家接连遭受暴君的统治。
  • The people suffered under foreign tyrants. 人民在异族暴君的统治下受苦受难。
9 bloody kWHza     
adj.非常的的;流血的;残忍的;adv.很;vt.血染
参考例句:
  • He got a bloody nose in the fight.他在打斗中被打得鼻子流血。
  • He is a bloody fool.他是一个十足的笨蛋。
10 labor P9Tzs     
n.劳动,努力,工作,劳工;分娩;vi.劳动,努力,苦干;vt.详细分析;麻烦
参考例句:
  • We are never late in satisfying him for his labor.我们从不延误付给他劳动报酬。
  • He was completely spent after two weeks of hard labor.艰苦劳动两周后,他已经疲惫不堪了。
11 assassination BObyy     
n.暗杀;暗杀事件
参考例句:
  • The assassination of the president brought matters to a head.总统遭暗杀使事态到了严重关头。
  • Lincoln's assassination in 1865 shocked the whole nation.1865年,林肯遇刺事件震惊全美国。
12 exult lhBzC     
v.狂喜,欢腾;欢欣鼓舞
参考例句:
  • Few people would not exult at the abolition of slavery.奴隶制被废除了,人们无不为之欢乐鼓舞。
  • Let's exult with the children at the drawing near of Children's Day.六一儿童节到了,让我们陪着小朋友们一起欢腾。
13 assassinated 0c3415de7f33014bd40a19b41ce568df     
v.暗杀( assassinate的过去式和过去分词 );中伤;诋毁;破坏
参考例句:
  • The prime minister was assassinated by extremists. 首相遭极端分子暗杀。
  • Then, just two days later, President Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas. 跟着在两天以后,肯尼迪总统在达拉斯被人暗杀。 来自辞典例句
14 perennial i3bz7     
adj.终年的;长久的
参考例句:
  • I wonder at her perennial youthfulness.我对她青春常驻感到惊讶。
  • There's a perennial shortage of teachers with science qualifications.有理科教学资格的老师一直都很短缺。
15 drooping drooping     
adj. 下垂的,无力的 动词droop的现在分词
参考例句:
  • The drooping willows are waving gently in the morning breeze. 晨风中垂柳袅袅。
  • The branches of the drooping willows were swaying lightly. 垂柳轻飘飘地摆动。
16 coffin XWRy7     
n.棺材,灵柩
参考例句:
  • When one's coffin is covered,all discussion about him can be settled.盖棺论定。
  • The coffin was placed in the grave.那口棺材已安放到坟墓里去了。
17 countless 7vqz9L     
adj.无数的,多得不计其数的
参考例句:
  • In the war countless innocent people lost their lives.在这场战争中无数无辜的人丧失了性命。
  • I've told you countless times.我已经告诉你无数遍了。
18 tolling ddf676bac84cf3172f0ec2a459fe3e76     
[财]来料加工
参考例句:
  • A remote bell is tolling. 远处的钟声响了。
  • Indeed, the bells were tolling, the people were trooping into the handsome church. 真的,钟声响了,人们成群结队走进富丽堂皇的教堂。
19 transcripts 525c0b10bb61e5ddfdd47d7faa92db26     
n.抄本( transcript的名词复数 );转写本;文字本;副本
参考例句:
  • Like mRNA, both tRNA and rRNA are transcripts of chromosomal DNA. tRNA及rRNA同mRNA一样,都是染色体DNA的转录产物。 来自辞典例句
  • You can't take the transfer students'exam without your transcripts. 没有成绩证明书,你就不能参加转学考试。 来自辞典例句
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