Search This Blog

Monday, March 29, 2021



 Copyright © 1995 Nancy Barra, "Interruption",oil on canvas 28"x22"from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo

She was convinced that for a long time only a handful of people have controlled our lives through political, financial, social and cultural institutions. She thought that for this elite, the word Honesty has lost its original meaning.

What is the meaning of Honesty

Copyright © 1927 Norman Rockwell, "The law student", 23.7 x 32.5, Lithograph

The word Honesty is derived from the Latin word honos, which means a public award to people who is “believed or supposed to be righteous and decent to perform a public duty”. In Latin the honestis were those people who were given the honoris (honor) by the people to become public servants. The honestis would be the formal equivalency of the "politicians" in our modern world. However many who we initially supposed to be"good public servants” have not always been true to this praise and honor.

Copyright © 1938 Edward Hopper, "Woman in compartment C car reading a book", oil on canvas, 16 X 20.

There is a more profound and rich meaning of Honesty in Latin that uses not one but several words to define it: decus and decorus (decency and respect), probus (to be honest), virtus (virtue and bravery), integere (integrity) and pietas (love and respect for humanity). Under this comprehensive definition of Honesty, many politicians and heads or international agencies, corporations and financial institutions would unfortunately be left out, or dishonoris (dishonored).

Copyright © 19th century, Angus Mc Bride in "British History". Title: "Radical politics in 19th century Britain", illustration on paper.

People have become disillusioned by many politicians for lack of their consistency, which also reveals their lack of Honesty. Many use a discourse full of concepts like equality, justice, diversity and environmental concerns but they drive fancy cars, live in mega mansions, fly personal jet planes, and like to be profiled in vanity magazines wearing exclusive designer clothes. Most of these leaders' closest friends are not disenfranchised working class folks, except as potential voters, of course.

Copyright © 2019 Bansky "Devolved Parliament", Mural 13 foot long, 98.4" x 165.3"

People are upset with leaders and institutions worldwide for their lack of Honesty. These so called "leaders" do not understand that their promising words have to match their actions. People demand for them to be consistent in their daily life along with the ethical and practical requirements of the word Honesty. 

Copyright © 1798 Library of Congress, Author: anonymous. Lithograph "The Congressional Pugilist", Philadelphia, Pensylvania.

She knew that she was not saying anything new. However, she thought that it would be a great idea to teach Latin to children in schools, so that they, as the next generation, can reclaim the precise meaning of important words like Honesty and its implications in anything they do. 

Copyright ©2021 Nancy Barra, "Reading by the sea", 16" x 12.5", pastel over watercolor on Aquarelle Arches paper,
from:Nancy Barra Contemporary Art/Arte Contemporáneo  

For now, she said that it was necessary to remember the essential meaning of what it means to be honest, so we all understand the honor of taking the responsibility to become a public servant as well as a decent human being... in saecula seculorum (forever and ever). Amen


Copyright © 1508  Albrecht Durer, "Praying hands", 8" x 12", pen and ink on blueish paper.