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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [N4v p200]

Eloquentia fortitudine praestantior.[1]

Eloquence superior to strength

Arcum laeva tenet, rigidam fert dextera clavam,
Contegit & Nemees corpora nuda leo.
Herculis haec igitur facies? non convenit illud,
Quòd vetus & senio tempora cana gerit.
Quid quòd lingua illi levibus traiecta cathenis?
Queis fissa facili allicit aure viros?
An ne quòd Alciden 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.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [N5r p201]

Eloquence vault mieulx que force.

Larc en la main, en lautre la massue,
Peau de lyon estant cy aperceue,
Pour Hercules me faict ce vieillart croire.
Mais ce quil a marque de si grand gloire:
Que mener gens enchainez a sa langue.
Entendre veult, quil feist tant bien harengue,
Que les Francois pour ses dits de merveilles,
Furent ainsi que pris par les oreilles.
Si donc il a par loix & ordonnances
Range les gens, plustost que par vaillances,
Dira lon pas (comme est verite)
Que lespee a lieu aux livres quicte?
Et que ung dur cueur par saiges mieulx se range,
Que gros effort son asprete ne change?
Pource Hercules ne fait pas grandes forces:
Et si sont gens apres luy grandes courses.

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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  • 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  [M4r f79r]

EMBLEMA CXXI.

Aliquid mali propter vicinum malum.[1]

Misfortune caused by a bad neighbour

Διαλογιστικῶς

In dialogue form.

Raptabat torrens ollas, quarum una metallo,
Altera erat figuli terrea facta manu.
Hanc igitur rogat illa, velit sibi proxima ferri,
Iuncta ut praecipites utraque sistat aquas:
Cui lutea, Haud nobis tua sunt commercia curae,
Ne mihi proximitas haec mala multa ferat.
Nam seu te nobis, seu nos tibi conferat unda,
Ipsa ego te fragilis sospite sola terar.

A stream was carrying along two pots, one of which was made of metal, the other formed by the potter’s hand of clay. The metal pot asked the clay one whether it would like to float along close beside it, so that each of them, by uniting with the other, could resist the rushing waters. The clay pot replied: The arrangement you propose does not appeal to me. I am afraid that such proximity will bring many misfortunes upon me. For whether the wave washes you against me or me against you, I only, being breakable, will be shattered, while you remain unharmed.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [M4v f79v]

Das CXXI.

Ein böses umb der Nachbauwern
willen.

In einem starcken Bach daher
Rauschen zwen Häfen ongefer
Der ein auß Ertz der ander war
Gemacht vom Häfner auß Thon klar
Der auß Ertz den Irrdin ansprach
Daß er wolt schwimmen bey im nach
Damit sie kündten dester baß
Widerstandt thun dem Wasser graß.
Dem antwort wider der Irrdin
Deiner Nachbarschafft ich hab kein gwin
Und frag nit nach der gmeinschafft dein
Damit sie mich nit bring in pein
Dann so das Wasser mich an dich
Stieß, oder wider dich an mich
So bleibestu gantz unversert
Ich aber würd gar zertrimmert.

Notes:

1.  See Avianus, Fables 11; Erasmus, Adagia 32, Aliquid mali propter vicinum malum.


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