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Scyphus Nestoris.

Nestor’s cup

Nestoreum geminis cratera hunc accipe fundis, [1]
Quod gravis argenti massa profudit opus.
Claviculi ex auro: stant circum quattuor ansae:
Unam quanque super fulva columba sedet.
Solus eum potuit longaevus tollere Nestor.
Maeonidae doceas quid sibi musa velit.
Est coelum scyphus ipse. color argenteus illi est:
Aurea sunt coeli sidera claviculi.
Pleiadas esse putant, quas dixerit ille columbas.[2]
Umblici [=Umbilici] gemini,[3] magna minorque fera est.[4]
Haec Nestor longo sapiens intelligit usu.
Bella gerunt fortes, callidus astra tenet.

Receive this bowl of Nestor with its double support, a work which a heavy mass of silver shaped. Its studs are of gold. Four handles stand about it. Above each one sits a yellow dove. Only aged Nestor was able to lift it. Do tell us what Homer’s Muse intended. The cup itself is the heavens; its colour is silvery; the studs are the golden stars of heaven. They think that what he called doves are the Pleiades. The twin bosses are the great and lesser beast. The wise Nestor understood this by long experience: the strong wage war, the wise man grasps the stars.

Notes:

1.  Nestor’s bowl is described at Homer, Iliad, 11.632-7. Only Nestor, for all his great age could lift it when full. For the interpretation of Nestor’s cup (or mixing bowl) given here, see Athenaeus, Deipnosophistae, 11.487 F ff.

2.  The Greek word for ‘doves’ is πελειάδες.

3.  ‘twin bosses’, i.e. possibly the protuberances inside the bowl where it was joined to the two supports.

4.  ‘great and lesser beast’, i.e. the Great and Little Bear, a phrase based on Ovid, Tristia, 4.3.1: ‘magna minorque ferae’.


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Section: ASTROLOGIE. View all emblems in this section.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [H5v p122]

La coupe de Nestor.

Apostrophe, et Probleme.

Reçoy en don la coupe de Nestor
A double ventre argentin, & cloux d’or,[1]
Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [H6r p123] Ou autour sont quatre anses d’or, fort belles,
Et sur chascune, autant de colombelles.
Le vieil Nestor la pouvoit seul lever:
Quoy par cela veult Homere prouver?
La Coupe, C’est le ciel, blanc comme argent:
Estoiles sont les cloux d’or refulgent:
Colombes sont Pleïades, & leur course:[2]
Deux omblicz sont la grande, & petite ourse.
Nestor prudent scet ce par long usage.
Preux font la guerre. Astres connoist le sage.

Par la Coupe de Nestor ainsi devisée en Ho-
mere
, est signifiée Astronomie Art venue de
longue & accienne [=ancienne] observation. Science de
certain conseil, & qui es grandz faictz plus
peut, & vaut que force corporelle.

Notes:

1.  Nestor’s bowl is described at Homer, Iliad, 11.632-7. Only Nestor, for all his great age (see Emblem 25. n.4, [A58a025]) could lift it when full. For the interpretation of Nestor’s cup (or mixing bowl) given here, see Athenaeus, Deipnosophistae, 11.487 F ff.

2.  The Greek word for ‘doves’ is πελειάδες.


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