Sunday, March 03, 2024


Jeremy Taylor's First Law of Friendship

Cedric C. Brown, Friendship and its Discourses in the Seventeenth Century (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016), p. 215 (quoting Taylor):
1. That the first law of friendship is, they must either ask of their friend what is indecent; nor grant it if themselves be asked. For it is no good office to make my friend more vicious or more a fool; I will restrain his folly, but not nurse it. . . . I should be unwilling my friend should know I am vicious; but if he could be brought to minister to it, he is not worthy to be my friend: and if I could offer it to him, I do not deserve to clasp hands with a virtuous person.
Obviously "either" here is a misprint for "neither". See Taylor's The Measures and Offices of Friendship (London: R. Royston, 1684), p. 67:


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