Zdroj: [Eliášová, Dominika, 4 nejslavnější špioni:Pozor na řezníky, milostné dopisy i vyprané prádlo, History revue, 2010, duben, 4, 84]
Nathan Hale citáty
Datum narození: 6. červen 1755
Datum úmrtí: 22. září 1776
Nathan Hale byl voják Kontinentální armády během americké války za nezávislost. Přihlásil se jako dobrovolník na výzvědnou misi do New Yorku, ale Britové ho odhalili a oběsili. Před popravou údajně řekl: „Lituji toho, že můžu položit za vlast jen jeden život!“. Díky tomuto přisuzovanému výroku je Nathan Hale všeobecně známá postava americké historie a je považován za amerického hrdinu, což bylo oficiálně stvrzeno roku 1985, kdy byl prohlášen za hrdinu svého rodného státu Connecticut. Wikipedia
Citáty Nathan Hale
Last words before being hanged by the British as a spy, (September 22, 1776), according to the account by William Hull based on reports by British Captain John Montresor who was present and who spoke to Hull under a flag of truce the next day:
‘On the morning of his execution,’ continued the officer, ‘my station was near the fatal spot, and I requested the Provost Marshal to permit the prisoner to sit in my marquee, while he was making the necessary preparations. Captain Hale entered: he was calm, and bore himself with gentle dignity, in the consciousness of rectitude and high intentions. He asked for writing materials, which I furnished him: he wrote two letters, one to his mother and one to a brother officer.’ He was shortly after summoned to the gallows. But a few persons were around him, yet his characteristic dying words were remembered. He said, ‘I only regret, that I have but one life to lose for my country.’
Some speculation exists that Hale might have been repeating or paraphrasing lines from Joseph Addison's play Cato, Act IV, Scene IV:
How beautiful is death when earned by virtue.
Who would not be that youth? What pity is it
that we can die but once to serve our country.
See George Dudley Seymour, Captain Nathan Hale, Major John Palsgrave Wyllys, A Digressive History, (1933), p. 39.
Another early variant of his last words exists, as reported in the Independent Chronicle and the Universal Advertiser (17 May 1781):
I am so satisfied with the cause in which I have engaged, that my only regret is, that I have not more lives than one to offer in its service.
„I wish to be useful, and every kind of service necessary to the public good becomes honorable by being necessary.“
Statement to Captain William Hull prior to his spying mission, as quoted in "Captain Nathan Hale (1755 - 1776)" http://www.connecticutsar.org/patriots/hale_nathan.htm by Rev. Edward Everett Hale
Kontext: I wish to be useful, and every kind of service necessary to the public good becomes honorable by being necessary. If the exigencies of my country demand a peculiar service, its claim to perform that service are imperious.