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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [C5v f17v]

Silentium.

Silence

Emblema xi.

Cum tacet: haud quicquam differt sapientibus amens.
Stultitiae est index linguáque, vóxque suae.
Ergo premat labia, digitóque silentia signet,
Et sese Pharium vertat in Harpocratem[1].

When he is silent, the fool differs no whit from the wise. It is tongue and voice that betray his stupidity. Let him therefore put his finger to his lips and so mark silence, and turn himself into Egyptian Harpocrates.

ID expressum ex Graeco Palladae epigrammate, quo
significat omnem hominem vel imperitum, pro
sapientissimo haberi, quandiu linguam tenere po-
tuerit: eum enim tacendo, morbum affectúmque sa-
nè turpissimum tegere. Sic enim ferè nunquam di-
stinguitur indoctus à scienti peritóque, à circumspe-
cto & prudenti homine imprudens. Notum adagium
vetus: Tutum silentii praemium: & illud Simonidis: Lo-
cutum fuisse poenituit saepe, tacuisse nunquam.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [C6r f18r]

Silence.

LE fol ne differe du sage,
S’il ne dit mot: car son langage,
Quel il est, nous tesmoigne assez.
Partant qu’il se ferme la bouche,
Et que de son doigt il la touche,
Comme l’ancien Harpocrates.

CEcy est tiré d’un Epigramme Grec de
Palladas: par lequel il dit, qu’un hom-
me, quoy que fort ignorant, est estimé bien
sage autant de temps qu’il se peust tenir de
parler. car se taisant, il couvre un mal & com-
plexion fort reprehensible. Aussi par ce
moyen jamais à peine l’indocte ne peust
estre discerné de celuy qui est sçavant &
bien lettré, ny l’imprudent de celuy qui est
bien advisé & sage. L’ancien proverbe est
assez cogneu de tous, Il est bon de se taire,
ou, Trop parler nuist. Et ce que disoit Si-
monides
, Que souvent on s’est repenti d’a-
voir parlé: mais jamais de s’estre teu.

Notes:

1.  Harpocrates, also known as Horus, was the son of the Egyptian divinity Isis. He avenged the murder of his father Osiris by Set/Typhon. He is often represented as an infant with his finger held to his mouth as a sign of silence and economy of words. See Plutarch, De Iside et Osiride 68.


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Relating to the text:

  • Folly, Foolishness; 'Pazzia', 'Sciocchezza', 'Stoltitia' (Ripa) [52AA51] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Ignorance; 'Ignoranza', 'Ignoranza di tutte le cose', 'Ignoranza in un ricco senza lettere' (Ripa) [52AA5] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Taciturnity; 'Secretezza', 'Secretezza overo Taciturnità' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [52DD3(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Wisdom; 'Sapienza', 'Sapienza humana', 'Sapienza vera' (Ripa) [52A51] Search | Browse Iconclass

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