‘Commemorate’ comes from Latin commemorat, which means ‘to remember collectively.’ A commemorative speech, therefore, is a kind of spoken discourse where the speaker is trying to do one or all the following:
…and so on. Such speeches are commemorative in the sense that the language, tone, style and perhaps even anecdotes present in the speech compel hearers/readers to remember, honour and/or appreciate the personalities or events being discussed in the speech.
In other words, a commemorative speech aims to remember the person/event being talked about in high regard.
Choosing the right topic for a commemorative speech can be tricky. It all depends on the purpose and event of the speech. Sometimes, an event's organiser(s) can help in selecting the right kind of speech to deliver.
Still having difficulty picking a topic? Check out the following 100 unique commemorative speech topics to choose from. Make it a speech everyone will remember for a long time!
Listen to ex-U.S. president, Barack Obama, deliver a heart-warming commemorative speech honouring Nelson Mandela in 2013.