Pietas in traditional Latin usage expressed a complex, highly valued Roman virtue; a man with pietas respected his responsibilities to gods, country, parents, and kin. In its strictest sense it was the sort of love a son ought to have for his father. Aeneas's consistent epithet in Virgil and other Latin authors is pius, a term that connotes reverence toward the gods and familial dutifulness. At the fall of Troy, Aeneas carries to safety his father, the lame Anchises, and the Lares and Penates, the statues of the household gods.
In addressing whether children have an obligation to provide support for their parents, Aquinas quotes, Cicero, "..."piety gives both duty and homage": "duty" referring to service, and "homage" to reverence or honor." Filial piety is central to Confucian ethics.
As a virtueEdit
In Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Lutheranism, and Anglicanism, piety is one of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. "It engenders in the soul a filial respect for God, a generous love toward him, and an affectionate obedience that wants to do what he commands because it loves the one who commands."
Piety belongs to the virtue of Religion, which the concordant judgment of theologians put among the moral virtues, as a part of the cardinal virtue Justice, since by it one tenders to God what is due to him.
- See Cicero, Nature of the Gods, 1. 116 and On Rhetorical Invention, 2. 66.
- Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae, "Question 101. Piety", Article 2
- Wonsuk Chang; Leah Kalmanson (8 November 2010). Confucianism in Context: Classic Philosophy and Contemporary Issues, East Asia and Beyond. SUNY Press. p. 68. ISBN 978-1-4384-3191-8.
- "Gift of Piety", Catholic Dictionary
- Delany, Joseph. "Virtue of Religion." The Catholic Encyclopedia Vol. 12. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 12 May 2018
- Glatz, Carol. "Piety is embracing God and others with real love, not fake devotion, says Pope", Catholic Herald, 4 June 2014
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