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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [H1v p114]

Quibus Respublica conservetur.

The things that preserve a constitution

Non satis est Regum titulos, insigne, coronam,
Atque magistratus gerere, ut Respublica firma
Stet, maneant leges, pulchris ac rebus abundet,
Artibus efficitur, quae & non vulgaria dicas.
Nempe suos redamet cives, patris induat artus,
Praesentemque statum foveat, nec mutet iniquè.
Legibus, ut reliqui, propriis & pareat author.
Protegat insontes, vitiosos pellat abusus,
Hostibus occurrat, valeat subiecta tueri,
Unde sit, accipiat: quid enim imperium sine nervis?

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [H2r p115]

Praecipuè studeat cultum retinere Deorum,
Inde suis promptè, atque aliis tribuisse benignè
Quod decet, atque aequum iuris praeferre rigori.
Qui moderantur onus, prudentes, quàm sapientes
Sint magis, exemplis dignos testentur honores.
Laus virtutis enim non scire, sed actibus, usu
Et praestare: decus sequitur, sic paxve perennis
Rectorem, ac cives longum servantur in aevum.

It is not enough to wear the titles and insignia of kings, the crown and magistracies, for the constitution to stand, the laws to remain firm, and the state to be full of fine things; it is accomplished by means of arts that you would not call common. For a state should love its citizens in return, and put on a father’s visage it should nurture the present state of things, and not make rash changes. Let it obey, like the others, its own laws, and let the author obey. Let it protect the innocent, reject sinful crimes, attack the enemy, and be strong enough to defend the subject; let it accept from whence it comes, for what is power without muscles? Let it especially strive to maintain worship of the gods, and hence give promptly to its own what it owes, and to others in abundance what it should, and let it prefer equality in law to blind rigour. Let those who bear the burden be prudent rather than wise, and let them leave with exemplary deeds a precious testament of honour. For the real praise of virtue is not simply to know it, but to be excellent in actions and in practice: thus glory follows the ruler, and perpetual peace, and the citizens, too, live to a ripe old age.



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