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Lincoln Movie Quotes

Updated June 8, 2017 251 votes 82 voters 33.1k views18 items

"Lincoln" movie quotes give an inside look at the historical events surrounding the abolition of slavery and the end of the American Civil War, both of which had main character President Abraham Lincoln at their core. The 2012 biographical war film was adapted from the book "Team of Rivals" by Doris Kearns Goodwin into a screenplay by Tony Kushner and directed by the great Steven Spielberg. The film was given a release date of November 9, 2012, which is also the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.

In "Lincoln," Academy Award-winner Daniel Day-Lewis portrays the title character in the last few months of his life. Despite being in the heat of the American Civil War, Lincoln was beloved by his people yet still had a great deal of work to do in order to end slavery and lead the Union to a victory that ended the war. "Lincoln" examines the work President Lincoln had to put in to accomplish those things, including the struggles with those who opposed him, the compromises with those with other priorities and those who stood by Lincoln every step of the way.

The impressive cast of "Lincoln" includes Sally Field as First Ladt Mary Todd Lincoln, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Robert Todd Lincoln, Tommy Lee Jones as Radical Republican Congressional Leader Thaddeus Stevens, David Strathairn as Secretary of State William Seward, Jared Harris as Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant, Hal Holbrook as Francis Preston Blair and John Hawkes as Colonel Robert Latham.

Though touted as nothing short of a masterpiece, this historical drama film deals with very serious issues in very tense times. For something a bit different, instead check out "Flight," "This Must Be the Place," "Cloud Atlas," "Wreck-It Ralph," "Nobody Walks," "The Sessions," "Silent Hill: Revelation 3D," "Chasing Mavericks," "Alex Cross," "Smashed," "Sinister," "Seven Psychopaths," "Argo," "Here Comes the Boom," "The Paperboy," "Taken 2," "Frankenweenie," and "Looper."
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  • 1

    By the People, For the People

    By the People, For the People
    Video: YouTube

    Abraham Lincoln: "We here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth."


    President Abraham Lincoln delivers his Gettysburg address during the American Civil War noting that democracy is a new birth of freedom, one that brings equality to all citizens, regardless of skin color.
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    Euclid's First Common Notion

    Abraham Lincoln: "Euclid's first common notion is this: Things which are equal to the same things are equal to each other. That's a rule of mathematical reasoning and its true because it works - has done and always will do. In his book Euclid says this is self evident. You see there it is even in that 2000 year old book of mechanical law it is the self evident truth that things which are equal to the same things are equal to each other."

    Abraham Lincoln tries to explain his idea of equality in a different sense, not one that relates to persons but rather mathematical reasoning. This analogy helps those who are against his proposal to end slavery to think about the situation less personally.
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    Cure Ourselves of Salvery

    Cure Ourselves of Salvery
    Video: YouTube

    Abraham Lincoln: "Abolishing slavery settles the fate for all coming time, not only of the millions in bondage but of unborn millions to come. Shall we stop this bleeding? We must cure ourselves of slavery. This amendment is that cure. Here stepped out upon the world's stage now with the fate of human dignity upon our hands. Blood's been spilled to afford us this moment."


    Lincoln continues to express his feelings that slavery needs to go and push for the passing of the Thirteenth Amendment which would abolish slavery. This battle however was not as easy as many historical texts remember.
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    Proof That Some Men Are Inferior

    Thaddeus Stevens: "How can I hold that all men are created equal when here before me stands stinking the moral carcass of the gentleman from Ohio? Proof that some men are inferior. Endowed by their maker with dim wits, impermeable to reason, with cold pallid slime in their veins instead of hot red blood. You are more reptile than man George, so low and flat that the foot of man is incapable of crushing you."

    In a speech before the House, Thaddeus Stevens knocks it out of the park by noting that even within their ranks many are not equal, such as an opposing Representative from Ohio. This causes the supports of ending slavery to laugh but the message resonates even with the opposition.
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