Watching: A Man for All Seasons - Rich and More

> 2022-12-29

Some of the most compelling scenes in A Man for All Seasons [1] are between Saint Thomas More [2] and Richard Rich [3]. Each chronicles the gradual fall of the latter while the former remains stalwart.

Below are some of the more notable interactions.

  1. Nortfolk asks More about Rich and if he recommends him which More declines - already the importance More puts on his word is being highlighted.
  2. More offers Rich a teaching role and counsels against going where he will be tempted - this indicates that More is not tempted by the powers of higher office and predicts Rich’s later choices.
  3. Rich begs More for a position which More refuses - More’s strategic care comes into conflict with Rich’s ambitious weakness.
  4. More’s various interrogations by Cromwell and others are observed by Rich - these juxtapose their choices leading to ongoing hardships and immediate rewards, respectively.
  5. Rich perjures himself and the two share a last interaction over his new seal of office - Rich must face what he has done by succumbing to his lesser impulses.

In the end, Rich’s fate to “die in his bed” only serves to tell us the most important lesson: we all must die but our conduct before then is what truly matters. [4]

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