A Man for All Seasons: True to Yourself and a Good Friend to Others

Topics: Natural law, Thomas More, Conscience Pages: 3 (982 words) Published: February 23, 2013
Moral Guides
Thomas More’s upright moral sense and how he tries to find loopholes to defend himself. More strongly opposes Henry’s divorce but he rather than speak out against the Oath of Supremacy. More respects God’s law above all else, but he also does not pretend to understand it. Therefore, he sees man’s law best guide to action, even if it sometimes contradicts God’s law. His approach to moral action is sensible but not like Cromwell or Rich, if More sometimes seems like a hypocrite, it is because he is trying to keep his respect for the law and society balanced with his intelligence of himself. He obeys the law fully, and, in the end, the prosecution has to come up with false charges to execute him. Corruption

A Man for All Seasons focuses on the rise of Richard Rich as much as it follows the fall of Sir Thomas More. As More’s persistent self gets him killed. Rich becomes wealthier and retrieves greater status by selling out his friend and his own moral principles. Although Rich at first laments his loss of innocence, by the end of the play he has no thought of innocence anymore. Near the end of act one, Rich gives Cromwell information about the silver cup –that was given to him by More- in exchange for a job. Rich laments that he has lost his innocence, and the scene suggests that Rich has sold his soul to the devil. Cromwell himself suggests the devil as he cunningly tricks Rich into selling out before cramming Rich’s hand into a candle flame.

The Self and Friendship
Through its portrayal of More’s personal relationships, the play shows that you can be true to yourself and a good friend to others. Overall More looks inwardly for his strength and comfort. He appears to be more of a teacher than a friend or a lover. He relies on his own conscience as his guide, and through tests and through the example he sets, he attempts to teach others to do the same which is how he shows his friendship and love. The play shows that More’s self-confidence is not...
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