Definition of Rhetoric
"[Rhetoric,] that powerful instrument of error and deceit."
(August 29, 1632 - October 28, 1704)
From a Library of Congress lithograph
Locke On Rhetoric
“The ends of language in our discourse with others being chiefly these three: First, to make known one man’s thoughts or ideas to another. Secondly, to do it with as much ease and quickness as possible; and, Thirdly, thereby to convey the knowledge of things: language is either abused or deficient, when it fails of any of these three. (from "An Essay Concerning Human Understanding," vol.2, bk.3, ch.10, sec.23)
"Wit and fancy get a better welcome in the world than dry truth and real knowledge; so people will hardly think that the use of figurative language and ·literary· allusion constitutes an imperfection or misuse of language. In contexts where we seek pleasure and delight rather than information and improvement, such ornaments are indeed not faults. But if we want to speak of
Page last updated on November 24, 2008 by Nightfly