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ward appeased and persuaded to mercy towards them that
had done amiss, he expounded his words concerning dogs,
and caused all the dogs in the town to be killed. No man
here was injured ; and it had been an importune adhering to
a truth, and a cruel verification of his word, to have pre-
ferred his word before the lives of so many citizens.

16. (8.) It is not lawful to tell a lie to save our fame ;
but we must rather accuse ourselves than tell a lie, or
commit any other sin. " Nemo tenetur infamare se," is a
rule universally admitted amongst the casuists; " No man is
bound to discover his own shame." And upon this account,
they give leave to men to hide their sin, to leave their repent-
ance imperfect, to tell a lie, to hazard the not doing of a
known duty, to injure innocent persons. Thus when a man
hath stolen goods, he is bound to restore, but not if it can-
not be done without discovering his person, because no man
is bound to disgrace himself. If an adulteress hath some
children by her husband, others secretly by a stranger, she
is bound not to suffer the legitimate to be injured by provi-
sions for the other : this is true ; but if she cannot prevent
the injury to the legitimate without discovering herself to
her husband, " non tenetur, she is not bound" to defame
herself. If her husband examine her concerning it, she may
hold her peace ; but if that increases the suspicion, she hath
no way to escape but by denying it ; for she is not obliged
to betray or accuse herself. This is the doctrine of the
canonists and masters of conscience in the Church of Rome,
which, as yet, are almost all that have written upon cases.
Navarre is the man whom I choose for all the rest. " Nemo
tenetur restituere cum periculo famse consequentis virtutem
inoraleni vel theologicam ; non farnse partse in aliis rebus
prseclaris ; ut ingenio, divitiis ; No man is bound to make
restitution with the hazard of his fame consequent to a
moral or theological virtue;" that is, if it will make him
suspected not to be a good man : but if it will only hinder
or hazard his reputation of wisdom or wealth, or any thing of

Habetur in Compendio Navarri per Petr. Guivar. edit. Antwerp. 1595, p. 93.


these natures, it hinders not. And again P in the case of an
adulteress, " Peccavit, sed potest absolvi, licet taceat, et
noceat patri putativo et haeredibus, quando timetur mors, vel
amissio farnae," &c. " She hath sinned, but she may be ab-
solved, though she hold her peace, and be injurious to the
supposed father, and wrong the heirs ; that is, if she be in
peril of her life, or fears the loss of her fame." To save a
man's credit, an honest man, to whom it would be a great
shame to beg, 'videtur posse clanculum necessaria surripere,
may privately steal necessaries : ' " so Diana. q And if so,
I do not doubt but he may also lie, and deny it to save his
credit, if he be asked uncivilly concerning it. But this also
the doctors expressly affirm, that if Titius have disgraced
Caius by publishing his secret shame to defame him, he is
bound to make restitution of his good name, by denying
what he said, that is, by telling of a lie, or by mental reserva-
tion ; and that is all one, as I shall prove in the sequel. So
Emonerius. Against these prodigies of doctrine I intend
this paragraph. We must not commit a sin to save our life,
much less to save our fame ; and indeed nothing does more
deserve infamy than to tell a lie, nothing disgraces a man
more : and if a lie be an injustice, then no end can save it

17. But then concerning our fame, we must rather let it
go, than let our duty go. For though our fame is a tender
part, and very valuable, yet our duty is more : although our
fame is necessary for others, yet a good conscience is neces-
sary to ourselves : r and he is cruel that neglects his own fame;
but he is more cruel that neglects his own soul : and there-
fore we may expose our good name to go as God shall please,
1. When we ask counsel and remedy for our soul. 2. To
avoid the sin of pride, and punish the vanities of our spirit.
3. To exercise and increase the grace of humility. 4. In hu-
miliation and penance for our sins, when our fame is not ne-
cessary to others, that is, when we are not eminent and public
persons. 5. When we are tied to any express duty which is
indispensably necessary, as restitution of fame or goods, and
yet cannot be done without the publication of our person and
our shame. 6. When for our own greater good or for the

P P. 82. i Vide Compen. Impress. Lugd. 1641. p. 335.

' S. Aug. lib. de Bono Viduit. c. 22.


public interest we are commanded by a just and competent
authority. 7. And lastly, When we must either confess our
sin or tell a lie, which is the thing now in question ; for we
must rather suffer shame than do things worthy of shame,
rather be ashamed before men than be ashamed before God,
that is, rather be disgraced than damned : for nothing needs
a lie but a sin to hide it, and by a lie a sin is made two.

18. (9.) It is not lawful to tell a lie in humility, or the
confession of sins and accusation of ourselves. " Cum humi-
litatis causa mentiris, si non eras peccator antequam menti-
reris, mentiendo efficeris quod evitaras ;" said St. Austin: 5
" He that lies in humility, and calls himself a sinner in that
wherein he was innocent, hath made himself a sinner by his
lying." And this was it which Abbot Zosimus 1 wittily and
piously replied ; for when he said he was the greatest sinner,
and the vilest of men, to him that reproved him for saying
so, and telling him that it was not truly said of him, because
every one knew he served God with great diligence and
great sincerity, and therefore he ought to speak more truly
of himself and more thankfully of God ; Zosimus replied,
' You say very well, I ought to speak truth of myself and
thankfully of God : but I am false and unthankful, but there-
fore I did say true, and not unthankfully.' But we have
truth enough to say of ourselves to make us humble without
saying what is false. *O 8e ilguv dtaTaX/y, agvsTsdai rd iixde-
%ovra, jj &MTTU xonTv, says Aristotle ; u "To deny the
good things that are in us, or to make them less, is dissem-
bling." All pride is a lie; but humility is truth: and there-
fore it is but a dissembling humility that lives upon the bread
of deceit. Synesius, bishop of Ptolemais, was a wise man
and a great philosopher. But when he was chosen bishop,
he refused it passionately ; and that his refusal might be
accepted, declaimed most bitterly against himself; that he
was a man given to gaming, from which a bishop should be
free as God himself; that he did not believe that the world
would ever perish ; that he did not assent to the article of
the resurrection of the dead ; that being a philosopher of
the Stoical sect, he was something given to lying ; that he
was not popular in his opinions, but humorous and morose,

De Verb. Apost. Dorotheas Doctr. ii. n. 11.

u Eth. lib. iv. c. 7. Wilkinson, p. 169.


secret and resolute ; that if he was forced to be a bishop, he
would then preach all his opinions. For all this, Theophilus,
bishop of Alexandria, consecrated him bishop, as knowing all
this to be but stratagem and the arts of an odd, fantastic
humility. But it was ill done ; and Synesius had this punish-
ment for his lying modesty, that he was believed by posterity
to be so heathenish and unworthy, that that Church chose
him bishop only upon hopes he would mend. So Evagrius*
and Nicephorus* report.

19. (10.) In a just war, it is lawful to deceive the unjust
enemy, but not to lie ; that is, by stratagems and semblances
of motions, by amusements and intrigues of action, by am-
bushes and wit, by simulation or dissimulation,

" by force or craft, openly or secretly," any way that you can,
unless you promise the contrary : for it is in open war, if the
war be just, lawful to do justice upon the enemy all the ways
we can ; craft is but the facilitation of the force ; and when it
is a state of war, there is nothing else to be looked for. But
if there be a treaty or a contract, a promise or an agreement,
in any thing, that is a state of peace so far, and introduces a
law ; and then to tell a lie or to falsify does destroy peace
and justice, and by breaking the law reduces things to the
state of war again.

" It is lawful to do any thing to destroy your enemy ;" that
is, so long as you profess hostility: and therefore if you tell
a false tale to him to deceive him, when you are fighting
against him, he is a fool if he believes you, for then you intend
to destroy him; but you are not unjust, you are in a state of
war with him, and have no obligation upon you towards
him. Thus Elisha 3 told a lie to the Syrian army which
came to apprehend him, " This is not the city, and this is
not the way :" and this is approved and allowed by Plato and
Xenophon, Homer and Pindar, Polybius and Thucydides,
Plutarch and Lucian, amongst the Greeks ; Philo amongst the
Jews : and St. Chrysostom b amongst the Christians says, " If

* Evagr. lib. i. c. 15. Hist. J Niceph. lib. xiv. c. 55.

1 Piudar. Isth. iv. 81. Heyne. 2 Kings, vi. 19.

b Lib. i. de Sacerdotio.


you examine all the bravest generals, you shall find their
bravest trophies to be the production of fraud and craft, xa.1
/iSXXov rourous siraivo/Jt/svovs q roug tpavtfug xga.7ovvra.g, " and that
they were more commended than such who did their work by
fine force." Thus the causing false rumours to be spread
amongst the enemies is an allowed stratagem in war, neither
ignoble nor unjust. Flaccus c told that /Emilius had taken
the enemies' town, to dishearten the party he fought against:
and Quintius, the consul, caused to be spread abroad, that
the enemies on the right wing were fled. By such arts
it is very usual to bring consternation to the hostile party :
and he whom you may lawfully kill, you may as well deceive
him into it as force him into it ; you being no more obliged
to tell him truth than to spare his life : for certainly of itself
killing is as bad as lying; but when you have no obligation
or law to the contrary, and have not bound yourself to the
contrary, you may do either. But this is at no hand to be
done in matters of treaty or promise, either explicit or impli-
cit, as in parties and truces ; and therefore it was a foul stain
upon Hannibal, that he professing open war against the Ro-
mans, did also profess it against faith and justice, keeping
no word or promise, if it was for his advantage to break it ;
and the Trojans were troubled in conscience at their falla-
cious conducting of their wars, not by stratagem, but by
breaking their oaths and covenants,

vu> 3" "^xia. iriffTa

" We fighting with lying and breaking promises," which is
unlawful to do. For concerning this tiling, that even in war
we are bound to keep faith and promise made to our enemies,
it is certain and affirmed by almost all wise and good men of
the world : " Liquet etiam in bello fidem et justitiam servaii
oportere, nee ullum decorum oportere servari, si violetur fides,"
said St. Ambrose; 6 and he proves it by example of Joshua,
who kept his promise with the Gibeonites got fradulently
from him. And the same is the sentence of St. Austin ; f
" Fides quando promittitur, etiam hosti servanda est, contra
quern bellum geritur:" and therefore, when Nebuchadnezzar
had conquered Zedekiah, and taken him into protection and

c Livius, lib. iii. <> Iliad. H, 351. Heyne, vol. i. p. 392.

De Offic. lib. i. c. 29. f Epist. i. ad Bonifac.



peace upon his word and promise of fidelity, because lie
afterward did privately solicit the king of Egypt to fight
against the king, he was put to death with greatest cruelty.
And this is not only true between those who are public ene-
mies, foreigners, and strangers, and supreme in their respec-
tive dominions, which the law properly signifies under the
word ' hostes;' 8 for this is without question; and therefore
all men condemn those that violate ambassadors, or that
break the laws of truce ; and every one blames Titus Labie-
nus h for wounding Commius of Arras under the colour of
parley : but Attilius Regulus' is commended for refusing to
give his voice in the senate so long as he was not discharged
of his oath made to the Carthaginians. But this is also true,
and our word and faith are sacred, when it is passed to all
sorts of enemies, to rebels, to thieves, to civil adversaries, to
condemned persons, to fugitive servants, such as Spartacus,
Eunus, and Athenio ; and the- reason of all is the same. " In-
ter quos juris alicujus communio est, inter eos obligationem
contrahi ; They that are under the same laws are equally
bound ;" and whoever promise or treat, do it at least by the
law of nature or nations, which alike bind them who are free
from any civil obligation. This is that which Triphoninus
said, that if a thief intrusts any goods to the right owner,
not knowing that they are his own, he is not obliged to res-
titution ; but every man else is, if he have promised, because
they are none of his, and therefore he can be obliged to re-
pay them : and for thieves and fugitives the people of Rome
did treat with them, and send ambassadors ; and all that was
bound upon them by that intercourse they kept religiously.
And the same they did to condemned persons ; as appears in
that famous case of Cains Rabirius, k who was questioned for
killing L. Apuleius Saturninus against the public faith given
him by the people, when he and his companions fled to the
Capitol for immunity and a guard against the sentence of
death which he had deserved.

But all this is to be understood so, that the faith and
word be given by him who hath power to verify it ; but when
A. Albinus made a peace with King Jugurtha, for which he

* L. Quos nos, ff. de Verborum Signif.

h CSES. B. G. viii. 23. Oberliu. p. 335.

Cicer. Offic. iii. 27. 2. Heusing. p. 766.

k Vide Orat. Cicer. pro C. Rabirio. Appian. Bel. Civil, i.


had no commission, the senate was not obliged to verify it ;
and Cainillus, the dictator, broke the peace which the Romans
had foolishly made with the Gauls ; and Scipio dissolved the
contract which Masinissa and Sophonisba made without his
leave who had the power. In this there is only caution to
be had, that there be no combination to deceive or rescind
what is found to be disadvantageous, nor advantages taken
by the change of hands. For if the Romans, finding relief
come, made Camillus dictator that they might by pretence
of his command break the peace, they did dishonourably and
false ; but if he was dictator before the peace, he had power,
and he had reason. To this can be referred the case of two
Italian gentlemen. Guarino had injured Antonio de Imola;
but confessed his fault, asked pardon, made amends : and
then Antonio swore his peace and his forgiveness, and that
his hand should never be upon him ; but in his heart bore
him a secret grudge, and therefore smote him secretly, saying
that Guarino was a bandit, and therefore condemned by the
laws. This is to make our promise the cover of a lie, and
the laws to minister to crafty mischiefs. After a promise, a
man must not change his mind, and then make excuses.
" Renunciatio sui juris per poenitentiam revocari non potest,"
saith the law. 1

But deceiving the enemy by the stratagem of actions or
words is not properly lying ; for this supposes a conversa-
tion of law or peace, trust or promise explicit or implicit. A
lie is the deceiving of a trust or confidence ; but in fighting
there is none of that ; it is like wrestling and fencing, a de-
sign to make that part unarmed where he may strike the
surer: and of this St. Clement" 1 of Alexandria affirms ex-
pressly concerning stratagems in war : " Heec omnia licebit
efficere, vel persuaclendo, vel cogendo, vel injuriam faciendo
in iis ulciscendis quibus expedit, vel faciendo id quod justum
est, vel mentiendo, vel vera dicendo, vel etiam sirnul utendo
aliquibus eorum in eodem tempore; All these things it is
lawful to bring to pass by persuasion, or by force, by doing
injury or harm there where we are to do revenge, by doing
that which is just, or by telling that which is true, or by ly-
ing, or by doing any one or more of these together." " Haec
autein omnia, et quomodo oporteat uti unoquoque eorum,

1 L. Pactum, ff. de Pact. m S. Matt. lib. i. c. 13.


cum Graeci accepissent a Moyse, non parvam accepere utili-
tatera ; When the Greeks received all these things from
Moses, and how they were to use any one and every one of
these, they received no small advantage."

20. In this case, all the prejudice which the question is
like to have is in the meaning and evil sound of the word
' lying ; ' which, because it is so hateful to God and man, casts
a cloud upon any thing that it conies near : but lying (which
St. Basil calls "extremam malitise lineam, the extremity of
malice;" which St. Ephrem calls " the rust of conversation")
is indeed an enemy ; but in war so it should be ; only
in peace, and contracts, and civil conversation, it is intole-
rable. In war it is no lie, but an engine of war, against which
the enemy is to stand upon his guard : and if a man may
falsify a blow, much more may he falsify a word ; and no jus-
tice, no promise, no charity, no law, restrains the stratagems
in a just war ; they which may be destroyed, may be deceived ;
and they may be deceived by false actions, nay, by false
words, if there be no collateral obligation or law to the con-
trary ; "A just man (saith St. Austin") is to take care of
nothing but that his war be just ;" that is, by a just authority,
and for a just reason. " Cum autem justum bellum stisceperit,
utrum aperta pugna, utrum insidiis vincat, nihil ad justi-
tiam interest ; But if it be a just war, it matters not as
to the question of justice, whether he overcome by force or
by deceit." ' Dolus' and 'perfidia' are extremely different.
" Dolus an virtus quis in hoste requirat?" and, " bonum esse
dolum si quis adversus hostem latronemve machinetur," said
Ulpian ;P '* Craft against a thief or enemy is good, but not
perfidiousness." "Nullo discrimine virtutis ac doli prospe-
ros omnes laudari debere bellorum eventus," said Animianus
Marcellinus.* 1 To bring war to a happy end, you may
use force or wit ; but at no hand break a promise, or be

21. He that desires to see more particulars to the same
purpose, may, if he please, see Lipsius's Politics r and Adarn
Contzen, 8 together with the excellent examples of great and
wise personages in Polyaenus and Frontinus.

n Qu. 10, 11. in Josue. Virg. JEn. ii.

P Lib. i. ff. de Dolo Malo. i Lib. xvii.

5 Politic, c. 17. Lib. x. Pol. c. 38. et 46, 47.


(11.) But this is not to be extended to a license of telling
a lie of the enemy in behalf of our own country for fame and
reputation, for noises and triumph ; and I remember that
Poggius upon this account lost the reputation of a good

Dum patriam laudat, damnat dum Poggius liostem,
Nee malus est civis, nee bonus historicus. 1

He was a good citizen, but an ill historiographer, that com-
mended all the actions of the Florentines, and undervalued
their enemies.

22. (12.) Princes may not lie for the interests and advan-
tages of government. Not in contracts, treaties, bargains,
embassies, and all the intercourses of peace and civil nego-
tiation. For besides it is an argument of fear and infirmity
to take sanctuary in the little subterfuges of craft, when
they are beaten from their own proper strengths, it is
also a perfect destruction of government and the great bands
of society and civil intercourse; and if they be used to fail,
no man can be confident of that affirmative which ought to
be venerable and sacred up to the height of religion ; and
therefore the Egyptian law pressed this affair well, let all
that break their word and oaths die for it ; because they are
laden with a double iniquity, " et pietatem in Deos violant,
et fideni inter homines tollunt, maximum vinculum socie-
tatis, they destroy piety and reverence towards God, and
faith amongst men, which is the great ligature of society."
And if princes do falsify their word and lie, their neigh-
bours can have no intercourse with them but by violence
and war, and their subjects none but fear and chance. For
princes to lie is the greatest indecency in the world : and
therefore Diodorus Siculus" tells that the Egyptian princes
used to wear a golden chain mixed and distinguished with
curious stones, and they called it truth ; meaning, that
nothing was a greater ornament to a prince, nothing ought
to be more sacred, or more remembered.

23. Bodinus says otherwise, and that princes and judges
have leave, because sometimes they have necessity, to lie ;
and of the same opinion was Plato, x provided it was done
for the good of the people. But that which they mean is

Sannazar. 1 Epig. Lib. ii. Antiquit. * Lib. iii. de Rep.


only in affirmations and narratives, in adding confidences or
producing fears, in making laws and establishing religions ;
such as was that of Numa, who, when he had a mind to en-
dear to the people those good laws which he had made, said
that he received them from the goddess Egeria. This may
be done against an enemy; and if it be for the good of the
people, it hath in it charity and some show of prudence, but
not to the bravery and magnanimity of a prince ; but how-
ever it be in this, it can never be permitted to violate a pro-
mise or a treaty, nor yet to tell false in a treaty, for that is
against peace and against justice. When there is in it no
harm, but all good, as in order to persuade the people to a
duty or to their benefit, they in matters of public life being
like children in the affairs of their private, that is, when their
need and incapacity of being otherwise governed require
it, they may be used as they can, according to that of the
Persians ; " Sapientes dicunt quod mendaciura, beneficium
faciens, melius est vero exitium parturiente ; When a lie
does charity, it is better than an uncharitable and pernicious
truth ;" always supposing that the lie which serves charity
be not against justice ; but when it is in treaties, there a lie
does not only disgrace the sincerity of the prince that treats,
but is of itself apt to hurt the other : and therefore at no
hand to be admitted.

24. The next inquiry is concerning persons criminal, and
so for others in proportion.

Question II.

Whether it be lawful to use restrictions and mental reserv-
ations, so that what we utter is false, but joined to something
within does integrate a truth, and make up a true answer ?

25. To this I answer, that this hath no distinct consider-
ation of its own; but whether a mental reservation makes
that to be true which would otherwise be a lie. For if it be
still a lie, a criminal person may no more speak half-truths
than whole lies ; for that which is but the half of a true pro-
position, either signifies nothing, or is directly a lie. And
upon this supposition, this question is just to be governed
by the measures of the first; and in the same cases in which
it is lawful to tell a lie, in the same cases it is lawful to use
a mental reservation : for that which is lawful without it, is


also lawful with it ; and the mental reservation does not save
it harmless if it be still a lie. That therefore is the question,
whether he that speaks a lie, and thinks the other part which
makes it a true proposition, speaks truth yea or no.

26. The case is this. When Campian was taken in
England, he gave out that his name was ' Butler ;' the magis-
trate inquires, and is so answered : and he gives him his
oath, and he swears that his name is so; so much he said:
but he added withal to himself secretly, ' It is my name that
I have borrowed, or my name for this time :' but that was
not the question ; for he was asked that he might be known,
and he answered that he might not be known. And he might
as well have said, 'That is my name,' and have added in his
thought, ' Not at all,' or, ' Hoc est nomen meum,' and in
mind have added, ' Falsum;' and then the case would have
been too plain, and too contemptibly ridiculous ; like the
sycophant in Plautus : " Advenio ex Seleucia, Macedonia,
Asia, atque Arabia ;" this was a lie : but he turned aside and
spake softly, " Quas ego neque oculis neque pedibus unquain

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