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PAX.

Peace

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Turrigeris humeris, dentis quoque barrus eburni,
Qui superare ferox Martia bella solet.[M]
Supposuit nunc colla iugo stimulisque subactus,
Caesareos currus ad pia templa vehit.
Vel fera cognoscit concordes undique gentes,
Proiectisque armis munia pacis obit.[1]

The elephant, with its tower-bearing shoulders and ivory tusk, a beast accustomed to dominate the conflicts of Mars with savage ravings, has now submitted its neck to the yoke: subdued by goads, it draws Caesar’s chariot to the holy temples. Even the beast recognises nations reconciled on every side, and rejecting the weapons of war, it performs the duties of peace.

[Marginalia - link to text]Vide Suetonium in vita Gaii [Julii] Caesaris.[2]

Notes:

1. This is translated from Anthologia graeca 9.285, which refers to an occasion under the Emperor Tiberius when the statue of the Deified Augustus was for the first time borne in procession in a chariot drawn by elephants.

2. The episode in Suetonius’s ‘Life of Julius Caesar’ (ch. 37) is not really relevant to this text.


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Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [N2v p196]

In eum qui sibi ipsi[1] damnum
apparat.

One who brings about his own downfall

Capra, lupum non sponte meo nunc ubere lacto,
Qud mal pastoris provida cura iubet.[2]
Creverit ille simul, mea me pst ubera pascet.
Improbitas nullo flectitur obsequio.[3]

I am a goat giving suck against my will - to a wolf. The improvident kindness of the shepherd makes me do this. Once the wolf has grown, after feeding at my teats, he will then eat me. Wickedness is never deterred by services rendered.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [N3r p197]

A ceulx qui saprestent dommaige.

Voyez moy paovre & simple chievre,
Qui laisse ung loup mon pis teter.
Jen suis dolente, & pis que en fievre.
Car mal men sentiray traicter.
Mon maistre deust bien regretter
Cest acte, sil fust homme expert:
Veu quon a sceu pieca noter,[4]
Que en tous meschans, plaisir se perd.

Notes:

1. Textual variant: ‘ipsi’ omitted.

2. This is a translation of Anthologia graeca 9.47. For the content cf. Aesop, Fables 313-5.

3. ‘Wickedness is never deterred by services rendered’. See Erasmus, Adagia 1086, Ale luporum catulos.

4. This line is revised, cf. 1536 edition.


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