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Section: PRINCEPS (The Ruler). View all emblems in this section.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [K7v p158]

Quod non capit Christus,
rapit fiscus.

What Christ does not receive, the exchequer seizes

Exprimit humentes, quas iam madefecerat antè
Spongiolas, cupidi Principis arcta manus.
Provehit ad summum fures: quos déinde coërcet,
Vertat ut in fiscum quae malè parta suum.[1]

The dripping sponges which he had previously filled with moisture the tight hand of a greedy prince is wringing out. He advances thieves to the top and then puts pressure on them, so that he may divert to his own treasury their ill-gotten gains.

Notes:

1.  This is based on Suetonius, Life of the Deified Vespasian 16.


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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [D8r p63]

In senatum boni principis.

On the senate of a good prince

Effigies manibus truncae ante altaria Divùm
Hic resident, quarum lumine capta prior.
Signa potestatis summae sanctique senatus
Thebanis fuerant ista reperta viris.[1]
Cur resident? quia mente graves decet esse quieta
Iuridicos, animo nec variare levi.
Cur sine sunt manibus? capiant ne xenia, nec se
Pollicitis flecti muneribusve sinant.
Caecus at est princeps: quòd solis auribus, absque
Affectu, constans iussa senatus agit.

Figures without hands sit here before the altars of the gods. The chief of them is deprived of sight. These symbols of the supreme power and of the reverend senate were discovered by men of Thebes. - Why do they sit? - Because lawgivers should be serious, of a calm mind, and not change with inconstant thoughts. - Why have they no hands? - So that they may not take gifts, nor let themselves be influenced by promises or bribes. But the president is blind, because the Senate, by hearing alone, uninfluenced by feeling, impartially discharges what it is bidden to do.

Notes:

1.  This is Thebes in Egypt. See Plutarch, De Iside et Osiride 10; also Erasmus, Adagia 2601, Scarabaeus aquilam quaerit.


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