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A minister, an activist and the leader of the American Civil Rights Movement, Martin Luther King Jr. was also one of the greatest speakers of all time.

Well-known for using the power of words to overcome social injustice, the influential figure was tragically assassinated April 4, 1968, at the age of 39.

Although his life came to an end much too soon, King’s leadership, character and unwavering desire to make a difference in our society live on.

Every year, we commemorate them on the third Monday of January. Here are 25 of the best MLK quotes to inspire you on this national holiday ...

I Have a Dream ...

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by...

This year's MLK Day carries special significance.

The masterful orator delivered his famous "I Have a Dream" speech from Washington's Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963, just over fifty years ago.

Addressing over 250,000 Americans, King referenced another milestone - Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation, declared 100 years prior.

He did not talk about bills before Congress or the marchers’ demands, but framed the civil rights movement within the broader landscape of history.

He evoked past, present and future, within the context of Scripture, in one of the most famous speeches - many believe the best - in U.S. history.

Read the full text of King's iconic address below:

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Martin Luther King, Jr. Quotes

A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus.

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.

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