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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [F6v p92]

In Herculem adhuc iuvenem.

On Hercules when still a youth.

Inventus [=Iuventus] virtuti initianda.

Youth must be introduced to virtue.

Dum vitam primum ingreditur Tyrinthius heros,
Valde animi pendens constitit in trivio,
Hîc via se partes coram findebat in ambas,[1]
Quae dubii excruciant fortia corda ducis:
Una voluptatis longo latissima calle,
Altera virtutis margine clausa brevi.
Sed pius Alcides nulli virtute secundus,
Arctum virtutis se dedit in gremium.
Scilicet haec ista est ineuntis semita vitae:
Nam virtus hominem sola beare potest.

At the time he was first setting out in life, the hero of Tyrinth [Hercules] stood at a crossroads in great indecision of mind, Here before him the road split in two directions, Which agonised the brave heart of the indecisive warlord. One was very broad, the highway of sensuality [pleasure, self-indulgence], The other, the way of virtue, was narrow and hemmed in [lit. enclosed by a short border]. But the dutiful son of Alcaeus, second to none in virtue, Gave himself into the strict lap of virtue. Plainly this is that path for one starting out in life, For virtue alone can make a man blessed.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [F7r p93]

NARRATIO PHILOSOPHICA.

HErculem cům primům pubesceret, nar-
rat Xenophon in solitudinem exiisse, atque ibi
sedentem secum diu multumque dubitasse, cum
duae illi in oculis viae versarentur: una virtutis, al-
tera voluptatis, utra, ingredi sibi magis expedi-
ret. Is ut erat ad omnia summa natus, nullis delitia
rum & oblectamentorum illecebris ab illa malo-
rum omnium esca voluptate affici potuit: tamque
ille imperavit sibi, ut in omni officio ducem vir-
tutem sequeretur: cuius adiumentis instructissi-
mus, fortiter & maxima cum gloria etiam usque
ad plaudite actum illum vitae confecit. Nam pes-
simis monstris quibus itinera temebantur, terra-
rum orbem perpurgavit, tantumque domesticis
victoriis gloriae mervit, ut & ἀλεξίκακος dicere-
tur, & in numerum deorum quos in caelum meri-
ta evocaverant, referretur. Posteritas enim bene-
ficiorum memor, iis qui rerum gestarum splendo-
re fuissent clari, semper hoc iudicii & benevolen-
tiae tribuit, ut illis definitum in coelo locum esse
existimaret, ubi beati aeterno aevo cum diis immorta
libus fruerentur. Quos igitur Herculi adhuc pue-
ro Xenophon contigisse scribit, id etiam adolescentes o-
mnes in se possunt experiri, ut ineunte aetate consul-
tň deliberent, quos se & quales in posterum esse
velint. Quae deliberatio etsi pueris difficilis est,
res tamen facilč explicabitur, siu se potissimum
ad id vitae genus contulerint, in quo virtus ma-
ximč elucessit: quod iis opinor non arduum fue-
rii, quibus virtutis gloria ŕ patribus in haeredi-
Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [F7v p94] tatem relinqui solet. Natura enim accidit, ut in eo
filii se maximč exerceant, quod patres impensč ad-
amarint. Quibus autem tantum beneficium for-
tuna non concessit, quia ex domo non habent quo-
rum facta & dicta cum laude ne meminisse qui-
dem possint, externas familias in consilium adhi-
beant, & eos ipsi sequantur, qui cum praeclara il-
la civitatum gunernatrice virtute, aeternam sibi
gloriam pepererunt. Quis enim tam vulgi aut suo-
rum opinionibus obruitur, cui non species illa
honestatis qualibet voluptate magis eniteat? Et
certč qui ita se gerunt, ut eos vel peccare de-

lectet, etiam si non sit causa, facile tamen
primas dignitati tribuunt, &
suis ipsi iniuriis miser-
rimč crucian-
tur.

Notes:

1.  An allusion to Vergil, Aeneid, 6.540: ‘partis [for partes] ubi se via findit in ambas’ (where the road split in two directions). For Hercules at the crossroads, see also Junius no. 44 ([FJUb044]).



Iconclass Keywords

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Relating to the text:

  • child [31D112] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • journey to heaven, pathway to heaven [11S3] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Licentiousness, Lasciviousness; 'Lascivia', 'Licenza' (Ripa) [57AA51] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Pleasure, Enjoyment, Joy; 'Allegrezza', 'Allegrezza da le medaglie', 'Allegrezza, letitia e giubilo', 'Diletto', 'Piacere', 'Piacere honesto' (Ripa) [56B1] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Reward, 'Praemium'; 'Premio', 'Remuneratione' (Ripa) [55A12] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • the way to destruction is broad and the gate is wide; the way to life is narrow and the gate is straight ~ doctrine of Christ on love, etc. (Matthew 7:13-14; Luke 13:24) [73C7454] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Virtuousness; 'Amor di Virtů', 'Attione virtuosa', 'Guida sicura de' veri honori', 'Virtů', 'Virtů insuperabile' (Ripa) [57A6] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Youth, Adolescence, 'Iuventus'; 'Adolescenza', 'Gioventů' (Ripa) [31D120] Search | Browse Iconclass

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