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Forma tibi praestans, oculi cum sidere certant,
Atque habitat toto corpore pulchra Venus.
Sed vitiis animus, mens undique, corpore toto
Atque sinus pleni, mixta venena latent.
Est manus ad caedem prompta, ad periuria lingua,
Lumina, frons meretrix, nec pede tutus ades.
Quąm malč Mercurius dotes cum Cypride iunxit,
ὥστε καλοῦ μήλου nil color intus habet.
Ergo puer multum soli ne fide colori,[1]
Ni probat hunc virtus, quī mihi pulcher eris?

You’re very handsome, your eyes compete in splendour with the stars, and lovely Venus inhabits your whole body. But your soul, your mind everywhere, in your whole body, are full of sin, and the mixed poison of your breast is hidden. Your hand is quick to murder, your tongue to lies; your eyes and brow are a whore; and you stand hardly secure on your feet. How badly Mercury has mixed dowers with the Cyprian goddess: like a fair apple, you have no colour inside. Therefore, lad, do not trust very much in colour alone: unless virtue should prove you, how will you be beautiful to me?

Notes:

1.  A play on the famous line of Vergil, Eclogues, 2.17.



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