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Concordia.

Concord

Emblema xxxix.

In bellum civile duces cùm Roma pararet,
Viribus & caderet Martia terra[1] suis:[2]
Mos fuit in partes turmis coëuntibus easdem,
Coniunctas dextras[3] mutua dona dare[4].
Foederis haec species: id habet Concordia signum,
Ut quos iungit amor, iungat & ipsa manus.

When Rome was marshalling her generals to fight in civil war and that martial land was being destroyed by her own might, it was the custom for squadrons coming together on the same side to exchange joined right hands as gifts. This is a token of alliance; concord has this for a sign - those whom affection joins the hand joins also.

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EX 2. historiarum Taciti, & aliquot aliis locis
didici dextras pro concordiae symbolo apud
Romanos, aliásque nationes haberi solitas. Sed ad
rem: in ipso belli civilis classico ne amici cum ini-
micis & hostibus citra discrimen comprimerentur,
inter positum est eiusmodi sacramentum fidei. At
verò existimem hic dextras, pro quadam usitata
fidei nota, in auro, argentóve, aut alio metallo
depicta, sumi.

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Signe de concorde.

QUand Rome la guerriere avecques grands vacarmes
S’entretuoit, tombant souz ses forces & armes.
La coustume fut telle à ceux qui mesme train
Et faction suyvoient, de se donner la main:
Qui estoit un signal de concorde en ces guerres
Entre tous les soldats qui suivoient mesmes erres,
Pour s’armer d’asseurance, & fuyr toutes peurs,
Et que jointes les mains, fussent conjoincts les coeurs.

J’ay apprins du 2. des histoires de Tacitus,
& autres lieux, que les Romains, comme
aussi quelques autres nations, ont prins les
mains dextres, pour une devise de concor-
de. Mais pour venir au point: sur le com-
mancement de la guerre civile, ceste mar-
que de foy fut prinse & usitee, à ce que les
amis & ennemis ne fussent indifferemment
exposez en danger. Or j’estime qu’icy les
dextres n’estoient autre chose qu’une mar-
que taillee en or, argent, ou autre metal.

Notes:

1.  ‘Martial land’, a reference not only to Rome’s bellicose history but to the legend that Rome’s founder Romulus was the son of Mars, the god of war.

2.  Cf. Horace, Epodes 16.2, ‘Rome is being destroyed by her own might’ (written during the civil conflicts of 41 BC).

3.  These were fashioned in some kind of metal for use as tokens of friendship; see e.g. Tacitus, The Histories 1.54 and 2.8, (referring to another time of civil conflict, 69 - 70 AD). Alciato worked on the text of Tacitus and wrote some annotations.

4.  This word is dari in 1550 ed.


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