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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E6r]

ELOQUENTIA FORTITU-
dine praestantior.[1]

Eloquence superior to strength

Arcum leva tenet, rigidam fert dextera clavam,
Contegit & Nemees corpora nuda leo.
Herculis haec igitur facies? non convenit illud,
Quod vetus & senio tempora cana gerit.
Quid quod lingua illi levibus traiecta cathenis,
Quîs fissa facili allicit aure viros.
Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E6v]An ne quod Alcyden lingua non robore Galli,
Praestantem populis iura dedisse ferunt.
Cedunt arma togae,[2] & quamvis durissima corda,
Eloquio pollens ad sua vota trahit.

His left hand holds a bow, his right hand a stout club, the lion of Nemea clothes his bare body. So this is a figure of Hercules. But he is old and his temples grizzled with age - that does not fit. What of the fact that his tongue has light chains passing through it, by which he draws men along with ready ears pierced? The reason is surely that the Gauls say that Alceus’ descendant excelled in eloquence rather than might and gave laws to the nations. - Weapons yield to the arts of peace, and even the hardest of hearts the skilled speaker can lead where he will.

Notes:

1.  This epigram is closely based on Lucian’s essay, The Gallic Hercules.

2.  Cf. Cicero’s notorious line, Cedant arma togae, concedat laurea linguae, ‘Let weapons yield to the arts of peace, let laurels yield to eloquence’ (quoted in Quintilian, Institutio oratoria 11.1.24).


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  • ears [31A2213] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Europeans (with NAME) [32B311(FRENCHMEN)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • 'litterae', symbolic representations, allegories and emblems ~ literature; 'Lettere' (Ripa) [48C90] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Power of Eloquence; 'Forza sottoposta all'Eloquenza' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [52D31(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Strength, Power; 'Fortezza', 'Fortezza d'Animo e di corpo', 'Fortezza del corpo congiunta con la generosità dell'animo', 'Fortezza & valore del corpo congiunto con la prudenza & virtù del animo', 'Forza' (Ripa) [54A7] Search | Browse Iconclass

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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [N2v f122v]

In divites publico malo.

Those who grow rich out of public misfortune

Emblema lxxxviii.

Anguillas quisquis captat, si limpida verrat
Flumina, si illimes ausit adire lacus,
Cassus erit, ludétque operam: multum excitet ergo
Si cretae, & vitreas palmula turbet aquas,
Dives erit. Sic iis res publica turbida lucro est,
Qui pace, arctati legibus, esuriunt.[1]

If anyone hunting eels sweeps clear rivers or thinks to visit unmuddied lakes, he will be unsuccessful and waste his efforts. If he instead stirs up much clay and with his oar churns the crystal waters, he will be rich. Likewise a state in turmoil becomes a source of profit to people who in peace go hungry, because the law cramps their style.

SUmptum id ex Aesopico apologo, cuius etiam
meminit Aristophanes Equitibus. In eos converti-
tur qui tum maximè quaestum faciunt cum patria se-
ditione, vel intestinis odiis laborat. Id dicitur vul-
gò, In aqua turbida piscari.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [N3r f123r]

De ceux qui s’enrichissent aux
despens du public.

QUi pesche anguilles en eau claire
Sans troubler le gravier par tout,
Jamais il n’en viendra à bout:
Car le fleuve clair est contraire.
Il faut donq toute l’eau combler,
De sable & bouë la troubler.
De mesme aucuns sçavent bien mordre,
Pendant qu’ils voyent un desordre:
Attrapent tout & font leur main:
Lesquels tels qui sont à vray dire,
En troubles ne faisans que rire,
En temps de paix mourent de faim.

CEcy est prins d’une fable d’Esope, de la-
quelle aussi s’est aydé Aristophane en
sa Comedie, qu’il nomme les chevaliers. qui
est dit contre ceux lesquels emplent leurs
bouges au temps principalement que le
pays est troublé de sedition, & guerre inte-
stine. ce qu’on dit vulgairement, pescher en
eau trouble
.

Notes:

1.  Cf. Erasmus, Adagia, 2579 (Anguillas captare).


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