Old age adds to the respect due to virtue, but it takes nothing from the contempt inspired by vice it whitens only the hair.

Ira Gershwin


The Quote in Other Words

As one grows older, their virtuous qualities are further esteemed, while their vices continue to be despised, and the only change is the greying of their hair.


Explanation of the Quote

This quote highlights the importance of virtue and the negative impact of vice in old age. It suggests that as people age, their virtuous actions are more respected, but their vices are still held in contempt. The physical changes that come with old age, such as whitening hair, do not diminish the impact of one’s character.

The quote also implies that it is never too late to cultivate virtue and earn respect. Even in old age, one can still strive to do good and make a positive impact on others. Conversely, it serves as a warning that one’s past actions, particularly negative ones, can continue to affect their reputation and relationships in old age.

Overall, this quote emphasizes the importance of living a virtuous life and the lasting impact it can have, regardless of age. It also highlights the need for personal responsibility and accountability for one’s actions throughout their life.