Michele De Montaigne on Liars

Gore Vidal often used this quote from Montaigne’s essay called ‘Liars’, and now, more than ever I understand why he respected Montaigne and this quote in particular:

“Lying is an accursed vice. It is only our words which bind us together and make us human. If we realised the horror and weight of lying we would see that it is more worthy of the stake than other crimes. I find that people normally waste time quite inappropriately punishing children for innocent misdemeanours, tormenting them for thoughtless actions which lead nowhere and leave no trace. It seems to me that the only faults which we should vigorously attack as soon as they arise and start to develop are lying and, a little below that, stubbornness. Those faults grow up with the children. Once let the tongue acquire the habit of lying and it is astonishing how impossible it is to make it give it up. That is why some otherwise decent men are abject slaves to it.”

Posted In

Leave a Reply