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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [n8v p208]

Desidia.

Idleness.

LXIII.

Desidet in modio[1] Essaeus, speculatur & astra,
Subtus & accensam contegit igne facem.[2]
Segnities specie recti, velata cucullo,
Non se, non alios utilitate iuvat.[3]

The Theorist sits idly on the bushel-box and looks up at the stars, and underneath he covers up the flaming torch . Idleness, making a show of virtue, its head covered with a cowl, does no good to itself or anyone else.

Notes:

1.  Desidet in modio, ‘sits idly on the bushel-box’. See emblem 014 [A56a014].

2.  accensam contegit igne facem: ‘covers up the flaming torch’. Cf. Matthew 5:15, ‘Neque accendunt lucernam et ponunt eam sub modio’ (nor do men light a candle and put it under a bushel).

3.  Cf. Erasmus, Adagia, 1452, ‘Nec sibi nec aliis utilis’.


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    Single Emblem View

    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [O5v p218]

    La soverbia.

    Ottava rhima.

    Ves de una estatua estatua fabricada
    Y de otro marmor un marmor sacado.
    Esta es la Niobe[1] que ser comparada
    Con la Latona quiso por su hado.[2]
    Vicio es de la muger la levantada
    Soverbia, y por la piedra es declarado
    Ser la muger de tan duro sentido
    Qual en la dura piedra es conosçido.

    Notes:

    1.  According to the best-known story of her fate, Niobe was turned to stone. For the statue of Niobe by Praxiteles, see Ausonius, Epigrams, 63.2 and Anthologia Graeca, 16.130, a much translated epigram, which seems to have been in Alciato’s thoughts here.

    2.  Niobe in her pride boasted that having 12 (or 14) children, she was superior to Lato with just two, i.e. Apollo and Diana. These gods in revenge slew all her children and in her grief Niobe hardened into a rock; see Ovid, Metamorphoses, 6.165ff. See further, Erasmus, Adagia, 2233, Niobes mala.


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