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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [o1v p210]

Philautia.

Self-satisfaction.

LXX [=71] .

Qụd nimium tua sorma [=forma] tibi Narcisse placebat,
In florem, & noti est versa stuporis olus.[1]
Ingenii est marcor, cladesque philautia, doctos
Quae pessum plures datque deditque viros,
Qui veterum abiecta methodo, nova dogmata quaerunt
Nilque suas praeter tradere phantasias.

Because your beauty gave you too much satisfaction, Narcissus, it was turned both into a flower and into a plant of acknowledged insensibility. Self-satisfaction is the rot and destruction of the mind. Learned men in plenty it has ruined, and ruins still, men who cast off the method of teachers of old and aim to pass on new doctrines, nothing more than their own imaginings.

Notes:

1.  For the story of Narcissus, see Ovid, Metamorphoses, 3.344ff. On the flower, see Pliny, Natural History, 21.75.128: “there are two kinds of narcissus... The leafy one ... makes the head thick and is called narcissus from narce (‘numbness’), not from the boy in the story.” (cf. ‘narcotic’).


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    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [o2r p211]

    Vino prudentiam augeri.[1]

    Wisdom increased by wine.

    LXXIIII [=75] .

    Haec Bacchus pater, & Pallas communiter ambo
    Templa tenent: soboles utraque vera Iovis:
    Haec caput, ille femur solvit:[2] huic usus olivi
    Debitus, invenit primus at ille merum.
    Iunguntur merito. qụd si qui abstemius odit
    Vina, deae nullum sentiet auxilium.

    This temple Father Bacchus and Pallas both possess in common, each of them the true off-spring of Jove: she split Jove’s head, he his thigh. To her we owe the use of the olive; but he first discovered wine. They are rightly joined together, because if anyone in abstinence hates wine, he will know no help from the goddess.

    Notes:

    1.  This emblem uses material from Anthologia Graeca, 16.183, concerning a statue of Bacchus beside one of Pallas Athene.

    2.  Haec caput, ille femur solvit, ‘she split Jove’s head, he his thigh’. For the birth of Pallas Athene from the head of Jove and of Bacchus from his thigh, see emblems 1 ([A56a001]), and 25 ([A56a025]). Pallas is the virgin goddess, patroness of intellectual pursuits, who presented Athens with the gift of the olive tree. Bacchus discovered the vine during his wanderings about the earth and taught men its use. He also introduced various other features of civilisation.


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