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Bonis auspiciis incipien-
dum.

Begin with good auspices

XXIIII.

Auspiciis res coepta malis, bene cedere nescit.
Felici quae sunt omine facta, iuvant.
Quidquid agis, mustela tibi si occurrat, omitte:
Signa malae haec sortis bestia prava gerit. [1]

A business begun with bad auspices cannot turn out well. Things done with good omens bring happiness. Whatever you are doing, if a weasel crosses your path, abandon it. This evil creature bears signs of ill luck.

Notes:

1. áFor the weasel as a creature of ill omen, see Erasmus, Adagia, 173, (Mustelam habes).


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    In desciscentes.

    On those who turn traitor

    XI.

    Qu˛d fine egregios turpi maculaveris orsus,
    In noxamque tuum verteris officium,
    Fecisti, quod capra, sui mulctraria lactis
    C¨m ferit, & proprias calce profundit opes.[1]

    Because you have spoilt your fine beginnings with a shameful end and turned your service into harm, you have done what the she-goat does when she kicks the bucket that holds her milk and with her hoof squanders her own riches.

    Notes:

    1. áSee Erasmus, Adagia, 920 (Capra Syria), where the goat - of Syros, in the Aegean, not Scyros - is wild.


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