What Are Some of the Most Famous Short Speeches Ever Given?

Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, given in 1863 during the American Civil War, was only two to three minutes long and contained only 246 words. Franklin Delano Roosevelt's speech reacting to Pearl Harbor lasted approximately seven minutes, and John F. Kennedy's "Ich Bin Ein Berliner" speech was similarly short.

Other famous short speeches include Ronald Reagan's address to the nation after the Challenger space shuttle disaster in 1986, George Washington's 135-word second inaugural address in 1793 and King George VI's address to Britain in 1939 concerning the involvement of the nation in World War II. Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have A Dream" speech, given in Washington, D.C., in 1963, was also considered a short speech by standards of the time.