23 January 2012

The Matter of Honour

Not my intention to spread vitriol and venom through this blog. But an article in the Bangalore Mirror today really got my goat.
We have been hearing about the Indian Army Chief's age saga and along with that we have been hearing various interpretations of honour (in the Indian Army, if you will). Today the connotation of honour fell to its nadir. The writer said that honour is a funny word. The poor guys out there in the frontline must be getting tickled to death by the funny word honour. Are they missing the humour in the word honour?
I know, I know. Our learned friends will tell us that saying honour is a funny word is only a manner of speaking. To them I'd say let's change that manner then, for most in the frontline don't understand this nuance of language.
There are more funny words in the dictionary than honour: piles for example is one.
Piles is what armchair journalists eventually get.
The writer talks about Samuel Johnson's definition of honour in his 1775 dictionary. He tells us how carefully Samuel weighed the meaning of honour before putting it down in writing. Much before Samuel wrote his definition of honour, Shakespeare told us all about honourable men. Brutus was one, others could well be armchair journalists.

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