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Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [Y3r f231r]

A minimis quoque timendum.

Beware of even the weakest foe

Emblema clxviii.

Bella gerit Scarabaeus, & hostem provocat ultr:
Robore & inferior, consilio superat.
Nam plumis aquilae clm se neque cognitus abdit.
Hostilem ut nidum summa per astra petat.
Ovaque confodiens, prohibet spem crescere prolis:
Hcque modo illatum dedecus ultus abit.[1]

The scarab beetle is waging war and takes the challenge to its foe. Though inferior in physical strength, it is superior in strategy. It hides itself secretly in the eagle’s feathers without being felt, in order to attack its enemy’s nest across the lofty skies. It bores into the eggs and prevents the hoped-for offspring from developing. And then it departs, having thus avenged the insult inflicted on it.

APologus est Aesopicus, quo monemur non esse
contemnendum hostem quanquam imbecillum
aut etiam infimae sortis: aut neminem vel contem-
ptissimum esse provocandum, quia, ut caetera desint,
potest esse tamen dolis & fraude instructissimus, &
e magis ille formidandus, cui nihil est quod a-
mittat.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [Y3v f231v]

Qu’il faut avoir crainte mesme des
petis & compagnons[2].

L’Escargot quoy qu’il soit assez petit de corps
Se bande contre l’Aigle, & luy fait perte & honte:
En finesse & en ruse aisement la surmonte,
Car la voyant venir, tout doux se fourre lors
Dans les plumes d’icelle, & sans estre apperceu,
Parvient bien finement jusqu’au nid, & y passe,
O luy cassant ses oeufs, il en estaint la race,
Prenant vengeance ainsi du tort qu’il a receu.

C’Est icy une fable d’Esope: dont sommes
advertis qu’il ne faut contemner son en-
nemy, quoy qu’il soit de fort basse condition
& n’ait grand pouvoir: ou bien qu’il ne faut
agasser personne, quoy qu’elle soit de nul
pris, car encor que quelques uns n’ayent
moyen du monde, ce semble, toutesfois ce-
luy que nous attaquons peust estre mieux
fourny de tromperie & finesse, qui d’autant
est plus craindre qu’il n’a rien perdre.

Notes:

1. For the feud between the eagle and the beetle, see Aesop, Fables 4; Erasmus, Adagia 2601, Scarabaeus aquilam quaerit.

2. Corrected from the Errata


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