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In Astrologos.

Against astrologers

Icare per superos qui raptus & ara, donec
In mare praecipitem cera liquata daret.[1]
Nunc te cera eadem, fervensque resuscitat ignis,[2]
Exemplo ut doceas dogmata certa tuo.
Astrologus caveat quicquam praedicere, praeceps,
Nam cadet impostor dum super astra vehit[3].

Icarus, you were carried through the heights of heaven and through the air, until the melted wax cast you headlong into the sea. Now the same wax and the burning fire raise you up again, so that by your example you may provide sure teaching. Let the astrologer beware of prediction. Headlong will the imposter fall, as he flies beyond the stars.

Notes:

1. Cf. Anthologia graeca 16.107, a poem on a bronze statue of Icarus, translated by Alciato at Selecta epigrammata (Cornarius, ed.) p.333. Icarus and his father Daedalus ([A34b008] notes) escaped from King Minos of Crete on wings of feathers and wax. Icarus was over-bold and flew too near the sun; when his wings melted, he crashed into the Icarian Sea and was drowned. See Ovid, Metamorphoses 8.183ff. Icarus, like Phaethon ([A34b064]) was a type of those who do not keep to their proper station.

2. ‘same wax...fire’: a reference to the cire perdue method of casting statues.

3. Textual variant: volat.


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