Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Massinger on Honour

Philip Massinger (1583 - 1640) was an English dramatist. In his play, "A Very Woman," an old soldier provides this description of honor:
Speak the height of honour:
No man to offend,
Ne’er to reveal the secrets of a friend;
Rather to suffer than do a wrong;
To make the heart no stranger to the tongue,
Provok’d not to betray an enemy,
Nor eat his meat, I choke with flattery;
Blushes to tell wherefore I wear my scars,
Or for my conscience, or my country’s wars;
To aim at just things; if we have wildly run
Into offences--wish them all undone.
‘Tis poor in grief, for wrong done to die,
Honour to dare to live, and satisfy.

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