What's the difference between you have my word and I promise?
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There's not a lot of difference. However, "You have my word" could be construed to imply that you have previously (already) promised (given your word) and this statement is a reaffirmation of what was said before, whereas "I promise" implies that you are just now giving your word. OTOH, "You have my word" could be taken as present tense too, and would then essentially be the same thing as "I promise".
'You have my word' derives from the civalric code. One would literally have to stake their word, synonymous with their honor, upon completing whatever was agreed upon.
A promise remains similar, however no catagorised honor is laid upon it (although its recommended to keep promises).
This is perhaps best summed up in stating that if some-one has given their word and not fulfilled it, it may be said they are 'not a man of their word' or 'their word means nothing'
However if a promise is broken, whilst not particularly well reflecting on ones character, the person's 'word' or catagorised honor remains intact as it was never staked upon the result.
"You have my word" and "I promise" is the same thing, and it remains to be fulfilled.
There is really no difference. It can be argued that "You have my word" is a bit stronger, because "my word" means the person is taking an oath, in effect guaranteeing based on that person's honor, but that is a very fine point indeed. A promise means the same thing:
So one's word is a promise. No difference.
protected by tchrist Feb 22 '15 at 16:10
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