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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [I12v f84v]

In eos qui supra vires quicquam audent.

Those who venture on what is beyond their powers.

Emblema lviii.

Dum dormit, dulci recreat dum corpora somno
Sub picea, & clavam caeteráque arma tenet,
Alciden Pygmaea manus[1] prosternere letho
Posse putat, vires non bene docta suas.
Excitus ipse, velut pulices, sic proterit hostem,
Et saevi implicitum pelle leonis[2] agit.

While Alceus’ descendant was sleeping, while he was refreshing his body with gentle slumber, beneath a spruce tree, keeping hold of his club and other weapons, a band of pygmies thought they could lay him low in death, not really grasping the limit of their powers. But he, waking up, crushed the foe like fleas, and carried them off, wrapped up in the fierce lion’s skin.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [K1r f85r]

Apologus hic in eos flectitur, qui licet tenuis for-
tunae sint, aut ingenio non perinde valeant, au-
dent tamen potentiores, vel etiam doctiores inces-
sere: quo ex conflictu nihil referunt praeter noxam
& dedecus. Meminit apologi Marcellinus lib. 22. u-
bi de Iuliano Imperatore à maledicis impetito: fru-
stra, inquit, virum circumlatrabant, immobilem oc-
cultis iniuriis, ut Pygmaei vel Thiodamas, agrestis
homo Lyndius cum Hercule. Historiam tamen ma-
lim peti à Philostrato in Imaginibus.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [K1v f85v]

De ceux qui entre-
prennent par dessus leurs forces.

LEs Nains un jour voyans dormir Hercule à l’ombre
D’un grand Pin, contre luy s’approchent en grand nombre,
Pensans le despescher, & soudain mettre à mort
Sans resistance aucune: & ce pendant qu’il dort
La massue en ses bras il tenoit & ses armes.
Mais ils estoient pour luy par trop foibles gendarmes:
Car esveillé qu’il fut, les tue comme poux,
Et de son fier Lyon dans la peau les mit tous.

CEste invention fabuleuse icy est dicte
contre ceux lesquels quoy qu’ils soient
petis compagnons, & au demeurant n’ayent
grand’ cervelle, osent bien assaillir les plus-
forts, ou les plus-doctes: duquel conflit tou-
tesfois ils ne rapportent autre chose sinon
dommage & deshonneur. Marcellin en son
livre 22. fait mention de cest apologue, là ou
il parle de Julian l’Empereur assailly par les
mesdisans: En vain, dit il, aboyoient-ils par
secrettes calomnies cest homme constant &
immobile: comme les Pygmees, ou Thioda-
mas
, Lyndien[3], homme des champs contre Her-
cules. J’aymeroie toutefois mieux reprendre
ceste histoire des tableaux de Philostrate.

Notes:

1.  Hercules’ confrontation with the pygmies is described by Philostratus, Eikones 2.22.

2.  ‘the fierce lion’s skin’, the skin of the Nemean lion which Hercules always wore after slaying the beast. (See [FALc137], notes; [FALc180]).

3.  Corrected from the Errata


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