Webster 1913 Edition
An elaborate discourse, delivered in public, treating an important subject in a formal and dignified manner; especially, a discourse having reference to some special occasion, as a funeral, an anniversary, a celebration, or the like; – distinguished from an argument in court, a popular harangue, a sermon, a lecture, etc.;
orationat Bunker Hill
The lord archbishop . . . made a long
Syn. – Address; speech. See
To deliver an oration.
Webster 1828 Edition
1.A speech or discourse composed according to the rules of oratory, and spoken in public. Orations may be reduced to three kinds; demonstrative, deliberative, and judicial.
2.In modern usage, an oration differs from a sermon, from an argument at the bar, and from a speech before a deliberative assembly. The word is now applied chiefly to discourses pronounced on special occasions, as a funeral oration, an oration on some anniversary, &c. and to academic declamations.
3.A harangue; a public speech or address.