jump to navigation

“What is honour? A word” November 17, 2007

Posted by Jeff in Giuseppe Verdi, Italian, Legit, Opera, Theater.
trackback

My favorite baritone, the magnificent Tito Gobbi (1913-1984), sings of “L’Onore” in the title role of Giuseppe Verdi’s final opera, Falstaff.

Although Verdi’s Falstaff is taken mostly from The Merry Wives Of Windsor, the honor speech is from Act V of Henry IV, Part I; thus the absence of Prince Hal.

’Tis not due yet; I would be loath to pay him before his day. What need I be so forward with him that calls not on me? Well, ’tis no matter; honour pricks me on. Yea, but how if honour prick me off when I come on? how then? Can honour set to a leg? no: or an arm? no: or take away the grief of a wound? no. Honour hath no skill in surgery, then? no. What is honour? a word. What is in that word honour? what is that honour? air. A trim reckoning! Who hath it? he that died o’ Wednesday. Doth he feel it? no. Doth he hear it? no. ’Tis insensible, then. Yea, to the dead. But will it not live with the living? no. Why? detraction will not suffer it. Therefore I’ll none of it. Honour is a mere scutcheon: and so ends my catechism.

Technorati tags: , , , , ,

Comments»

No comments yet — be the first.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: