Remorse

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Remorse

See also Regret.
Ayenbite of Inwit (Remorse of Conscience)
Middle English version of medieval moral treatise, c. 1340. [Br. Lit.: Barnhart, 74]
Deianira
commits suicide out of remorse for unwittingly having killed husband, Hercules. [Gk. Myth.: Benét, 709]
Hermione
commits suicide upon the funeral pyre of her beloved Pyrrhus for having instigated his murder. [Fr. Drama: Racine Andromaque]
Jocasta
commits suicide when she realizes she has married son, Oedipus. [Gk. Lit.: Oedipus Rex]
Lord Jim
tormented by his memory of having saved himself from a sinking ship with 800 Muslims aboard. [Br. Lit.: Joseph Conrad Lord Jim in Magill I, 522]
Manfred
magician, living alone in an Alpine castle, broods on his alienation from mankind and on his destruction of the woman he loved. [Br. Poetry: Byron “Manfred”]
Mannon, Orin
crazed by guilt for inciting mother’s suicide. [Am. Lit.: Mourning Becomes Electra]
Oedipus
blinds self upon learning of his crimes. [Gk. Lit.: Oedipus Rex]
Othello
commits suicide from guilt for wife’s murder. [Br. Lit.: Othello]
References in classic literature ?
The fever of his body aided the impatience and agony of his mind, and his death-bed exhibited a mixture of the newly awakened feelings of horror, combating with the fixed and inveterate obstinacy of his disposition; a fearful state of mind, only to be equalled in those tremendous regions, where there are complaints without hope, remorse without repentance, a dreadful sense of present agony, and a presentiment that it cannot cease or be diminished!
For months I could not rid myself of the phantasm of the cat; and, during this period, there came back into my spirit a half-sentiment that seemed, but was not, remorse.
I only remind you of your own words, sir: you said error brought remorse, and you pronounced remorse the poison of existence.
Yet, since I had drunk so deeply of the pure fountain of religion in my early youth, I was haunted in the depths of my soul, through all my wanderings, by an ideal of moral perfection which could not fail one day to bring me back to God by the paths of weariness and remorse.
These beliefs give depth and gravity to every feeling, and to remorse a terrible and lasting power.
A king does not allow himself to soften save at the tears of the innocent, the remorse of the guilty.
I can even perceive some faint possibility of truth in the explanation which you described as the mesmeric theory-- that what I saw might be the result of magnetic influence communicated to me, as I lay between the remains of the murdered husband above me and the guilty wife suffering the tortures of remorse at my bedside.