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CONSILIO ET VIRTUTE CHI-  [M]
maeram
superari id est fortiores
& deceptores.

Wisdom and courage defeat Chimaera (i.e. the powerful and deceivers).

[Marginalia - link to text]Vide Fulgentium in Mithalogiis libro. 3. in principio.

Bellerophon ut fortis eques superare Chimaeram,
Et licii potuit sternere monstra soli.[1]
Sic tu Pegasei vectus petis aethera pennis,
Consilioque animi[2] monstra superba domas.

Bellerophon, that bold horseman, was able to overcome the Chimaera and lay low the monsters of the Lycian land. You likewise, borne on wings of Pegasus, seek the high heavens and, by the counsel of reason, tame proud monsters.

Notes:

1.  The King of Lycia imposed on Bellerophon, among other tasks, that of killing the Chimaera, a fire-breathing monster with a lion’s head, serpent’s tail and goat’s body. He achieved this last with the aid of the winged horse Pegasus, which Athena, goddess of wisdom, helped him to catch.

2.  ‘by the counsel of reason’. The name Bellerophon was interpreted by some as ‘bringer of counsel’. The Chimaera symbolised various uncontrolled passions.


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    • mis-shapen animals; monsters [25F9] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • chimera (lion/goat/snake); 'Chimera' (Ripa) (+ fighting animals; aggressive relations) [25FF232(+751)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • fabulous animals ~ hoofed animals (with NAME) [25FF24(WINGED HORSE)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • Counsel; 'Consiglio' (Ripa) [52E3] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • Strength, Power; 'Fortezza', 'Fortezza d'Animo e di corpo', 'Fortezza del corpo congiunta con la generositą dell'animo', 'Fortezza & valore del corpo congiunto con la prudenza & virtł del animo', 'Forza' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [54A7(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • Virtuousness; 'Amor di Virtł', 'Attione virtuosa', 'Guida sicura de' veri honori', 'Virtł', 'Virtł insuperabile' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [57A6(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • Cheat, Deceit; 'Fraude', 'Inganno' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [57AA621(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • historical person (with NAME) [61B2(FULGENTIUS, FABIUS PLANCIADES)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • Pegasus, the winged horse [93D1] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • Bellerophon, flying on Pegasus' back, kills the Chimera, a fire-breathing monster, with arrows or a spear [94S32] Search | Browse Iconclass

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    OPTIMUS CIVIS.

    The best citizen

    Dum iustis patriam Thrasybulus[1] vindicat armis
    Dumque simultates ponere quemque iubet.
    Concors ordo omnis magni instar muneris, illi
    Palladiae sertum frondis[2] habere dedit.
    Cinge comam Thrasybule, geras hunc solus honorem,
    In nostra[3] nemo est aemulus urbe tibi.

    Thrasybulus was avenging his country with righteous weapons and bidding every person lay aside his enmities; so every class in harmony granted him by way of great reward the wearing of a crown of Pallas’ leaves. - Wreathe your hair, Thrasybulus; you alone are to wear this honour. There is no rival to you in our city.

    Notes:

    1.  Thrasybulus of Steiria, after a distinguished military career, was instrumental in liberating Athens from the tyranny of the Thirty in the political confusion at the end of the fourth century BC. For his own moderation and his resistance to vengeful acts by others in the ensuing settlement, see Cornelius Nepos, Life of Thrasybulus 3.2-3. According to Nepos (ibid. 4.3) Thrasybulus interpreted the olive-wreath freely offered him by the citizens as a sign that he was held in supreme honour by them.

    2.  ‘of Pallas’ leaves’, i.e. the leaves of the olive tree, sacred to Pallas Athene, patron goddess of Athens.

    3.  Later editions read magna.


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