Behind Inaugural Speeches, Meaningful Words

What words do presidents focus on most in their inaugural addresses? Explore speeches, from Washington to Obama

Wordle is an application that takes text from any source and enlarges words that appear more frequently. Conversely, words that are smaller appear less frequently. Small words, like the or of, are not included in the Wordles above. (

George W. Bush's First Inaugural Address

Following years of political scandals and bitter fighting between President Bill Clinton and the Republican-controlled Congress, many pundits praised President George W. Bush’s first inaugural speech for its themes of compassion, service, character—and especially the promise to bring civility to politics. Newsweek’s Evan Thomas wrote: “Bush studied John F. Kennedy’s brief Inaugural Address before preparing his own. Bush’s themes of courage and service echoed JFK’s—without the heavy overhang of the ‘long twilight struggle’ of the cold war, but with the same emphasis on duty and commitment, words Bush repeated several times.”

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