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IRA.

Rage.

Emblema. 63.

Alcaeam veteres caudam dixere leonis,
Qua stimulante iras concipit ille graves.
Lutea cułm surgit bilis, crudescit, & atro
Felle dolor, furias excitat indomītas[1].[2]

The ancients called the lion’s tail alcaea, for under its stimulus he takes on dreadful fury. When the yellow bile rises and his temper grows savage with the black gall, the tail incites his indomitable rage.

Notes:

1.  Corrected by hand in the Glasgow copy.

2.  The Greek word ἀλκαία was supposedly derived from ἀλκή ‘strength’ (see Emblem 3, n.3, [A15a003]). The Etymologicum Magnum, an ancient Greek lexicon, defines ἀλκαία as ‘properly the tail of the lion, because it urges him on to strength (ἀλκή)’. Pliny, Natural History, 8.16.49, describes how the lion’s tail lashes with increasing fury and spurs him on. See also Aelian, De natura animalium, 5.39.


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