References in classic literature ?
Whilst something higher than prudence is active, he is admirable; when common sense is wanted, he is an encumbrance.
There is nothing he will not be the better for knowing, were it only the wisdom of Poor Richard, or the State-Street prudence of buying by the acre to sell by the foot; or the thrift of the agriculturist, to stick a tree between whiles, because it will grow whilst he sleeps; or the prudence which consists in husbanding little strokes of the tool, little portions of time, particles of stock and small gains.
The prudence which secures an outward well-being is not to be studied by one set of men, whilst heroism and holiness are studied by another, but they are reconcilable.
So, in regard to disagreeable and formidable things, prudence does not consist in evasion or in flight, but in courage.
Thus truth, frankness, courage, love, humility and all the virtues range themselves on the side of prudence, or the art of securing a present well-being.
More than one critic mentioned Prudences debt to Ian McEwan, whose tragic plots often stem from small mistakes.