Celebration Quotation – March 16, 2016
Today’s quote is from Sonnet 138 – which begins “When my love swears that she is made of truth, I do believe her though I know she she lies:”
This begs the question: Do you always tell the absolute truth to the one you love? Sometimes it’s the little white lies – “No, Honey, that dress does not make you look fat,” “Yes, Dear, I am happy to sit down and watch the game with you,” – that smooth the rough edges of a relationship – or at least keep you out of a quarrel. And while you may know that your spouse did not really “love” that wildly experimental dinner you made the other night, because he says he did, you want to believe him. Once again, Shakespeare is showing us how much he understood about human nature – and that some things haven’t changed in the last four hundred years.
The image – an oil painting from 1816 titled “Stratford Memorial Bust”, is by English artist Thomas Phillips (1770-1845.) It appears to be the painters rendition of the bust from Shakespeare’s funerary monument in the Holy Trinity Church at Stratford-upon-Avon – the church where Shakespeare was baptized and buried. The monument is painted in vivid colors, so this painting seems a much more stately “classical” rendition of the subject.
Phillips was a prolific portrait artist who painting many famous people of his day, including Lord Byron, Sir Walter Scott, and Samuel Taylor Coleridge. You can view a larger number of his works online at Art UK.
Image Source: Folger Shakespeare Library Digital Image Collection