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In sordidos.

Disgusting people

Emblema lxxxvii.

Quae rostro, clystere velut, sibi proluit alvum
Ibis, Niliacis cognita littoribus,[1]
Transiit opprobrii in nomen: quo Publius hostem
Naso suum appellat, Battiadesque suum.[2]

The ibis, a bird familiar on the banks of the Nile, washes out its bowels using its beak like a syringe. ‘Ibis’ has become a term of insult. Publius Naso [Ovid] called his enemy Ibis; and the inhabitant of Battus’ town did the same.

UT Ibis, avis Aegyptia, rostri aduncitate per eam
se partem proluit, qua reddi ciborum onera ma-
xim salubre est, ait Plinius lib. 8. cap. 27. Sic ple-
rque, quod vulgo dici solet, podicem ex ore fa-
ciunt, qui nimia verborum licentia utuntur, quque
putid loquuntur, eque etiam detegunt quae pro-
vida natura voluit esse tecta.

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Contre les villains.

Ibis, oyseau d’Egypte, au Nil faisant repaire,
Et qui de son long bec faict comme d’un clystere,
Est marque d’un villain, qui n’a respect aucun,
A dire salles mots, & blasmer quelqu’un.
Ovide & Callimach ont en leur poesie
Contre leurs mesdisans, ceste marque choisie.

COmme l’Ibis, oyseau d’Egypte, de son
long bec se purge par la partie salubre
& propre rendre les grosses matieres di-
gerees, ainsi que dit Pline livre 8. chap. 27.
Ainsi aucuns, comme lon dit en termes vul-
gaires, font de leur bouche, cul, qui sont trop
desbordez parler, qui parlent puamment,
& qui descouvrent ce que la sage nature a
voulu cacher.

Notes:

1. For this information about the ibis, see Aelian, De natura animalium, 2.35; Cicero, De natura deorum, 2.126; Pliny, Natural History, 8.41.97.

2. Battiades, ‘the inhabitant of Battus’ town’, i.e. the poet Callimachus, a native of Cyrene, a town founded by Battus. Ovid refers to Callimachus’ invective (not now extant) in his own poem Ibis, 53ff.


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  • (story of) Ovid representations to which the NAME of a person from classical history may be attached [98B(OVID)3] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • enema, squirt (+ variant) [49G331(+0)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • geographical names of countries, regions, mountains, rivers, etc. (names of cities and villages excepted) (with NAME) [61D(EGYPT)] Search | Browse Iconclass
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  • Insult; 'Ingiuria', 'Offesa' (Ripa) [57BB22] Search | Browse Iconclass
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