[Milton-L] Speaking of Donne...

Nancy Charlton charltonwordorder1 at gmail.com
Fri Dec 6 16:45:58 EST 2013


Yesterday many tributes to Nelson Mandela poured in, some of them
coming from Africa via Facebook. Of these, I was struck by this one:

Death be not proud, though some have called thee mighty and dreadful, for
thou art not so....... And death shall be no more, death thou shalt die! -
J. Donne. Lala ngoxolo Tata

No idea what the Xhosa says, except that I think "Tata" means "father."

Nancy Charlton

PS: I sent this yesterday -- I thought -- but it never came to my inbox.
I'm tempted to compare Mandela with Milton as freedom fighters: Mandela and
the ANC were at some point terrorists, both worked to overthrow established
autocratic governments, both were accomplished rhetoricians. I'm not sure
Milton would have liked the emphasis on forgiveness that Mandela showed --
but then Milton did not have to deal with racial issues. Still, the Samson/
terrorist debate seems pertinent.
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