One’s Given Word

But one is married also to something vital of one’s own that does not exist before the marriage: one’s given word. It now seems to me that the modern misunderstanding of marriage involves a gross misunderstanding and underestimation of the seriousness of giving one’s word, and of the dangers of breaking it once it is given.

–Wendell Berry, from “The Body and the Earth” in The Art of the Commonplace p. 302
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