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Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [o2v p212]

Dolus in suos.

Treachery against one’s own kind.

LXXIX [=80] .

Altilis allectator anas, & caerula pennis
Adsueta ad dominos ire redire suos,
Congeneres cernens volitare per ara turmas,
Garrit, in illarum se recipitque gregem,
Praetensa incautas donec sub retia ducat.
Obstrepitant captae, conscia at ipsa silet.
Perfida cognato se sanguine polluit ales,
Officiosa aliis, exitiosa suis.[1]

The well-fed decoy duck with its green-blue wings is trained to go out and return to its masters. When it sees squadrons of its relations flying through the air, it quacks and joins itself to the flock, until it can draw them, off their guard, into the outspread nets. When caught they raise a protesting clamour, but she, knowing what she has done, keeps silence. The treacherous bird defiles itself with related blood, servile to others, deadly to its own kind.

Notes:

1. Cf. Aesop, Fables, 282, where the decoy birds are pigeons.


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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. qud 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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