Single Emblem View

Section: NATURA (Nature). View all emblems in this section.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [G5v p106]

Vis naturae.[1]

The power of nature

Pana colunt gentes, (naturam hoc dicere rerum est)
Semicaprumque hominem, semivirumque Deum.
Est vir pube tenus, qud nobis insita virtus[2]
Corde oriens, celsa verticis arce sedet.
Hinc caper est, quia nos natura in secla propagat
Concubitu: ut volucres, squamea, bruta, feras.
Quod commune aliis animantibus, est caper index
Luxuriae, Veneris signaque aperta gerit.
Cordi alii sophian, alii tribure cerebro.
Inferiora modus, nec ratio ulla tenet.

Pagans worship Pan, that is the force of nature, a man half-goat, a god half-man. Pan is a man down to the loins, because that power that is naturally present in us men rises from the heart and has its seat in the high citadel of the head. Below this he is goat, because Nature perpetuates us down the ages by sexual intercourse, as she does birds, fish, brute beasts and wild. This is a thing shared with other living creatures. The goat is a sign of licentiousness, and carries Venus’ standards unconcealed. Wisdom some have assigned to the heart, others to the head. The lower parts neither restraint nor reason governs.


1. This woodcut is also used for Emblem 72.

2. Variant reading, hominum quod propria virtus, ‘because the power that is peculiar to men rises...’

Related Emblems

Show related emblems Show related emblems

Hint: You can set whether related emblems are displayed by default on the preferences page

Iconclass Keywords

Relating to the image:

Relating to the text:

  • Prudence, 'Prudentia'; 'Prudenza' (Ripa) ~ one of the Four Cardinal Virtues [11M41] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Licentiousness, Lasciviousness; 'Lascivia', 'Licenza' (Ripa) [57AA51] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Instinct, Natural Disposition; 'Instinto naturale' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [58B6(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass

Hint: You can turn translations and name underlining on or off using the preferences page.

Single Facsimile View | View Transcribed Page


Back to top

Privacy notice
Terms and conditions