Tue. Oct 26th, 2021

 (Photo used with permission of Wikimedia Commons)

When people say that “the pen is mightier than the sword,” they are trying to explain that using words to fight against something is better than using violence. While physical action can seem more effective, this saying highlights the fact that spoken or written words can be much more powerful. 

Origins:

Edward Bulwer-Lytton first used this well-known phrase in his historical play Cardinal Richelieu. To summarize, the character Richelieu discovers a plot to kill him but because he is a priest, he cannot turn to violence against anyone. When another character points out he has other weapons to use, Richelieu says, “the pen is mightier than the sword.”

Since then, people have taken the idea and used it in their own ways. 

In today’s world, too often people handle conflicts by physically hurting each other. Instead, people should use the power of speaking their thoughts and ideas. Words inspire, drive points across, and win arguments much better than throwing punches.

Now, if you look at the saying “actions speak louder than words,” it seems contradictory. However, that phrase refers to the idea that people must actually make changes rather than just talk about it — and those changes can happen through impactful speeches or powerful writings. The concept that “the pen is mightier than the sword” supports the opinion that taking action with your words can make a difference. 

By Gretchen Stern, senior and SEO Editor

Hi! My name is Gretchen and I am a senior editor and SEO editor for The Mycenaean. I love to travel and listen to music. 

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