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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [N4v p88]

XLIIII.

VITA AULICA SPLENDIDA
miseria.

MEl amarum comedit, cibosque aloė tinctos; captiva liberta-
te fruitur, iugum compedesque aureos trahit, splendide-
que miser dici potest, qui aulicis vinctus illecebris, sui iuris es-
se nunquam potest. Is si conferat potentiorum[1] fastum, & fastidia,
ingratitudinem superbam, & contemptum quem cogitur to-
lerare, cum omnibus deliciis & voluptatibus aulicis, sentiet
suam conditionem non multum differre ą servis, qui ad erga-
stula detruduntur. Infelix est illa felicitas, quae hominem libe-
rum subiicit passionibus & pravis affectibus stulti divitis, spe
levis praemioli, vel inanis gloriae proposita: vel quod omnium
turpissimum est, propter voluptates, scelerumque impunita-
tem; quae omnia fructus sunt peculiares vitae aulicae: ex quibus,
cłm maturuerint[2], morbi, contemptus, ignominia, ingratitu-
do, seraque poenitentia nascitur. Homo ingenuus ad liberta-
tem natus est, & ad eam retinendam natura instigatur: Omnis
servitus est onerosa. servire superbis, improbis, insolentibus,
violentis & impudicis, intolerabile. Ille liber dici nequit, cui
mulier, cui puer, cui improbus imperat: qui nihil iubenti au-
det negare, nihil recusare. Si poscit, dandum est, si vocat ve-
niendum, si eiicit abeundum, si minatur extimescendum.
Non benč pro toto libertas venditur
auro.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [O1r p89]

XLIIII.

Paulo Melisso Comiti Palatino.[3]

VITA AULICA SPLENDIDA MISERIA.[4]

Courtly life is splendid wretchedness

MElle aloėm tinctam comedes, & dulce venenum;
Servaque inaurato colla premere iugo;
Aegistique nurus imitabere quisquis in aula
Deperdes misero tempora servitio.[5]

You eat honey tainted with aloes, sweet poison; and if you weigh down your servile neck with a golden yoke, you who waste time at the court in wretched servitude will imitate the Danaides. [lit. the daughters-in-law of Aegisthus]

Notes:

1.  Corrected from the Errata.

2.  Corrected from the Errata.

3.  Another emblem dedicated to the poet Paulus Melissis Schedius. See previous, number 11 ([FBOb011]), and Boissard 1588, no. 2 ([FBOa002]).

4.  Cf. Alciato, ‘In Aulicos’ ([FALa111], and corresponding emblems).

5.  This should refer not to Aegisthus, but to Aegyptus, whose fifty sons married the fifty daughters of his brother, Danaus (both were sons of the mythological Belus, King of Egypt, hence the name of the daughters-in-law in the French edition, Beleļdes). According to the myth, the sons of Aegyptus were plotting against their uncle Danaus, prompting him to marry his daughters to them, only to command them to murder them on their wedding night. To add to the confusion, Aegisthus could potentially be aptly referenced here, as a claimed descendant of one of these Danaids (and the house of Argos, from which he came, were sometimes called the Danai), and his court at Mycenae was certainly a centre of depravity, adultery and murder.



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