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Narrative 
of the Life of Frederick Douglass, An 
American Slave.



sufferings he has endured, by his virtuous traits of character, by his
ever-abiding remembrance of those who are in bonds, as being
bound with them!—fortunate for the multitudes, in various parts of
our republic, whose minds he has enlightened on the subject of
slavery, and who have been melted to tears by his pathos, or roused
to virtuous indignation by his stirring eloquence against the
enslavers of men!—fortunate for himself, as it at once brought him
into the field of public usefulness, "gave the world assurance of a
MAN," quickened the slumbering energies of his soul, and
consecrated him to the great work of breaking the rod of the
oppressor, and letting the oppressed go free!
I shall never forget his first speech at the convention—the
extraordinary emotion it excited in my own mind—the powerful
impression it created upon a crowded auditory, completely taken
by surprise—the applause which followed from the beginning to
the end of his felicitous remarks. I think I never hated slavery so
intensely as at that moment; certainly, my perception of the
enormous outrage which is inflicted by it, on the godlike nature of
its victims, was rendered far more clear than ever. There stood one,
in physical proportion and stature commanding and exact—in
intellect richly endowed—in natural eloquence a prodigy—in soul
manifestly "created but a little lower than the angels"—yet a slave,
ay, a fugitive slave,—trembling for his safety, hardly daring to
believe that on the American soil, a single white person could be
found who would befriend him at all hazards, for the love of God
and humanity! Capable of high attainments as an intellectual and
moral being—needing nothing but a comparatively small amount
of cultivation to make him an ornament to society and a blessing to
his race—by the law of the land, by the voice of the people, by the
terms of the slave code, he was only a piece of property, a beast of
burden, a chattel personal, nevertheless!
A beloved friend from New Bedford prevailed on Mr.
DOUGLASS to address the convention: He came forward to the
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