These Are The Times That Try Men’s Souls

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Thomas Paine was a famous author of pamphlets during the American Revolution. Thomas Paine’s great gift was an ability to bolster the morale of those who were wavering and vacillating in regards to the cause of the American Revolution. A famous line from one of his pamphlets read: These are the times that try men’s souls. In other words, the hard battle that was about to be fought would be a severe test for the colonists against the mighty British Empire. Tyranny, like hell, said Paine, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. Thomas Paine knew that ordinary men tended to be fickle and uncommitted to a cause especially when there was resistance. When the cause is easy and unopposed, everyone is on board. But when suffering comes to men, the supposed friends of the movement surrender, abandon ship, run for cover, and even betray the cause. As Thomas Paine put it, the summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service to his country. But for those few that do persevere in the movement during those dark times, Paine assured them that they will have deserved the love and thanks of man and woman.


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