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Amor filiorum.

Love of one’s children

Emblema cxciii.

Ante diem vernam boreali cana palumbes
Frigore nidificat, praecoqua & ova fovet:
Mollius & pulli ut iaceant, sibi vellicat alas,
Queis nuda hiberno deficit ipsa gelu.[1]
Ecquid Colchi pudet, vel te Progne improba? mortem
Cùm volucris propriae prolis amore subit?[2]

Before the day of spring, the wood-pigeon, all white with winter snow, builds her nest and cherishes her premature eggs. To make her chicks lie more softly, she plucks her own wing-feathers, and stripped of them, she herself perishes from the wintry frost. Woman of Colchis, do you feel any shame? Or you, heartless Procne? - when a bird submits to death out of love for her own off-spring.

PRoposito avicularum exemplo, in quibus natura
duce summus amor, curáque deprehenditur erga
suos foetus, arguitur matrum quarundam immanium
barbara & plusquam ferina crudelitas, quae suis vi-
tam adimant, edoctae ab ave palumbe quo affectu
in eos esse debeant. Petitum id è Graeco Antipatri.

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L’amour envers les enfans.

LE Ramier fait son nid pendant la grand’ froidure.
Et couvre ses petits pour lesquels il endure
Toute rigueur de temps, & pour les mollement
Eslever, & tenir tant qu’il peust chaudement:
Ses plumes il s’arrache, & pour eux s’evertue,
Si bien que de grand froid quelquefois il se tue.
Vous Medee & Progné, devriez grand’ honte avoir
De voz impietez: car icy on peust voir
Un pauvre simple oyseau, qui tant ses petits ayme,
Que pour leur donner vie, il se l’oste à soy-mesme.

PAr l’exemple des oyseaux, lesquels par
instinct naturel ayment uniquement,
& ont soin de leurs petits, est icy vivement
reprinse la cruauté barbare & plusque bru-
tale de certaines meres sans pitié, qui tuent
leurs enfans, quoy qu’elles devoient appren-
dre du Ramier de quelle affection il estoit
raisonnable qu’elles cherissent iceux. Ce car-
me est du Grec d’Antipater.

Notes:

1.  This is based on Anthologia graeca 9.95.

2.  Both Medea (the woman of Colchis) and Procne killed their own children. They are the legendary infamous child-killers. See [FALc070] n. for Procne, [FALc054] n. for Medea.


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