another mystery quote

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Tue Nov 20 17:37:45 UTC 2012

Brilliant suggestion, Stephen.

Jean de *Bueil* did write the passage  in _Le Jouvencel_ ca1466.

Bly also calls him "de Brueil." So Bennett presumably got the quote from

(Also included are the recreated orations by famous non-freedom fighters
Alexander, William the Conqueror, and Henry V.)


On Tue, Nov 20, 2012 at 11:28 AM, Stephen Goranson <goranson at>wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Stephen Goranson <goranson at DUKE.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: another mystery quote
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Jean de Bueil ?
> Stephen Goranson
> ________________________________________
> From: American Dialect Society [ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] on behalf of
> Jonathan Lighter [wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM]
> Sent: Tuesday, November 20, 2012 11:01 AM
> Subject: [ADS-L] another mystery quote
> William Bennett's hot new inspiration anthology for teenage boys (No girls
> allowed!), called _The Book of Man_, includes (p. 36) a paragraph from a
> certain French knight who went by the moniker of Jean de Brueil.
> The quote appears in Robert Bly's _Iron John_ (1990) where poet Bly tells
> us that it was "found" by the "aikido student and master Terry Dobson who
> has taught so many of us the goodness possible inside the warrior" (p.
> 2004, p. 137). It was allegedly "spoken" in 1465.
> But surprise!  I find no earlier mention of this "Jean de Brueil" (or
> Breuil/ Bruil/ Brule) anywhere in GB, JSTOR or the Net itself. Same for his
> alleged words.
> The quote begins:
> "Battle is  joyous thing. We love each other so much in battle. If we see
> that our cause is just and our kinsmen fight boldly, tears come to our
> eyes. A sweet joy rises in our hearts...."
> You get the picture.
> Surely a  distinguished and meticulous Harvard graduate, political
> philosopher, and radio host like Dr. Bennett, who notes that the "Athenians
> and Spartans fought a bloody and horrific  [Peloponnesian] war for freedom"
> (instead of out of suspicion and jealousy, as  Thucydides imagined) must
> have double- and triple-checked the passage for authenticity.   Thus, among
> the acknowledgments, he is careful to assure us that, yes, the passage is
> "by Jean de Brueil."
> No further information is given.
> Garson?
> JL
> --
> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society -

"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

The American Dialect Society -

More information about the Ads-l mailing list