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GRATIAM REFERENDAM.

Show gratitude.

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AŽrio insignis pietate Ciconia nido,
Investos [=Investes] pullos pignora grata fovet,
Taliaque expectat sibi munera mutua reddi.
Auxilio hoc quoties mater egebit anus.
Nec pia spem soboles fallit, sed fessa parentum
Corpora fert humeris praestat & ore cibos.[1]

The stork, famed for its dutiful care, in its airy nest cherishes its featherless chicks, its dear pledges of love. The mother bird expects that the same kind of service will be shown her in return, whenever she needs such help in her old age. Nor does the dutiful brood disappoint this hope, but bears its parents’ weary bodies on its wings and offers food with its beak.

Notes:

1.See Pliny, Natural History 10.32.63: cranes care for their parents’ old age in their turn. See also Aelian, De natura animalium 3.23.


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POTENTISSIMUS
Affectus amor.

Love, the all-powerful emotion

Aspice, ut invictas[1] vires auriga leonis,
Expressus gemma pusio vincat amor.
Utque manu hac scuticam teneat, hac flectat habenas,
Utque sit in pueri plurimus ore decor.[2]
Dira lues procul esto, feram qui vincere talem
Est potis, ŗ nobis temperet anne manus.[3]

Look - here’s Love the lad, carved on a gem. See how he rides triumphant in his chariot and subdues the lion’s might. How in one hand he holds a lash, with the other he guides the reins, and on his countenance rests the loveliness of youth. - Dread pestilence keep far away. Would one who has the power to conquer such a beast keep his hands from us?

Notes:

1.Later editions read invictus

2.In some editions, this sequence of subjunctives is changed to indicative.

3.This is a translation of Anthologia graeca 9.221, an epigram about a seal carved with a representation of Eros driving a chariot drawn by lions.


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