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Les plus fiers estre domptéz.

Quand Marc Antoine heut Ciceron tué,[1]
L’honneur Romain, & son pays rué
Du tout au bas. L’hors il monta vinqueur
Sur char tiré par lyons,[2] col, & cueur,
Mettant soubz joug, & monstrant par ses armes
Avoir soubzmis, les fors Ducz, & gensdarmes.

Fierté n’est si haultaine, que par force
ne soit domptée, tant es hommes, que
es bestes.

Notes:

1.  Cicero was considered Rome’s greatest orator - his name was held by many to be synonymous with eloquence itself; see Quintilian, Institutio oratoria 10.1.112. Mark Antony had Cicero murdered in 43 BC in revenge for his scathing attacks in the fourteen ‘Philippic’ orations. See Seneca the Elder, Suasoriae 6.17.

2.  Cf. Pliny, Natural History 8.21.55: Antony was the first to yoke lions to a chariot in Rome...by this unnatural sight giving people to understand that noble spirits were at that time bowing to the yoke.


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Relating to the text:

  • Authority, Power; 'Dominio', 'Giurisdittione' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [53C11(+4):54F2(+2)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • death of Cicero: he is slain by soldiers at the order of the triumvirs [98B(CICERO)68] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Eloquence; 'Eloquenza', 'Fermezza & Gravità dell'Oratione' (Ripa) [52D3] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Vehemence, Violence, Fierceness; 'Sforza con Inganno', 'Violenza' (Ripa) [54AA4] Search | Browse Iconclass

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