[Ads-l] ages or angels

Stephen Goranson goranson at DUKE.EDU
Wed Jul 7 07:58:22 EDT 2021

On the differing accounts of what War Secretary Edwin Stanton said right after Abraham Lincoln died. “Now he belongs to the ages” or “Now he belongs to the angels.” Most attestations have “ages.” But these attestations start about 25 years later with Hay. At that time, historical perspective may have seemed apt. But weary, and religious, Stanton, in the moment, may have had in mind the story of the beggar Lazarus as told in Gospel of Luke 16:22: “The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side.” Abraham to Abraham.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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