• Among friends one has the privilege of saying nothing; the civility consists in the assumption that one's silence will be civilly understood. I can imagine a small gathering of friends who say nothing all evening: they recoil from saying anything that the others don't want to hear; and their silence would be the subtlest courtesy.

    Allen Tate (1967). “T. S. Eliot: The Man and His Work”, London : Chatto & Windus