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Dives indoctus.

The stupid rich man

Tranat aquas residens precioso in vellere Phrixus,
Et flavam inpavidus per mare scandit ovem.
Ecquid id est? vir sensu hebeti, sed divite gaza,
Coniugis aut servi quem regit arbitrium.[1]

Phrixus traverses the waters astride the precious fleece and fearlessly rides the golden sheep across the sea. - Whatever can this be? - A man dull of sense, but with rich coffers, whom the whim of wife or servant rules.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [M7r p189]

Riche ignorant.

Phrixus prochain de grand malheur,
Eust tost bon heur, ce dit Ovide.
Mouton a poil dor de valeur,
Par la Mer seurement le guyde.
Riche homme de prudence vuyde,
Soubz aultruy tout son bien ordonne:
Car sa femme conduict sa bride:
Et son varlet conseil luy donne.

Notes:

1. For the story of Phrixus and the Golden Fleece see Ovid, Fastii 3.851ff.


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ἀντέρως, id est, amor virtutis.[1]

Anteros, that is, love of virtue

Dic ubi sunt incurvi arcus? ubi tela Cupido?
Mollia queis iuvenum figere corda soles.[2]
Fax ubi tristis? ubi pennae? tres unde corollas
Fert manus? unde aliam tempora cincta gerunt?
Haud mihi vulgari est, hospes cum Cypride quicquam
Ulla voluptatis, nos neque forma tulit.
Sed puris hominum succendo mentibus ignes
Disciplinae, animos astraque ad alta traho.
Quattuor eque ipsa texo virtute corollas,[3]
Quarum quae Sophiae est, tempora prima tegit.

Tell me, where are your arching bows, where your arrows, Cupid, the shafts which you use to pierce the tender hearts of the young? Where is your hurtful torch, where your wings? Why does your hand hold three garlands? Why do your temples wear a fourth? - Stranger, I have nothing to do with common Venus, nor did any pleasurable shape bring me forth. I light the fires of learning in the pure minds of men and draw their thoughts to the stars on high. I weave four garlands out of virtue’s self and the chief of these, the garland of Wisdom, wreathes my temples.

Notes:

1. In all subsequent Wechel editions, the woodcut has been revised, removing the wings so as to fit the text.

2. This is a translation of Anthologia graeca 16.201.

3. ‘I weave four garlands out of virtue’s self’, a reference to the four cardinal virtues, justice, temperance, courage and wisdom.


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