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EMBLEMA CXCII [=191] .

In vitam humanam.

On human life

Plus solito humanae nunc defle incommoda vitae,
Heraclite: scatet pluribus illa malis.
Tu rursus (si quando alias) extolle cachinnum
Democrite: illa magis ludicra facta fuit.
Interea haec cernens meditor, qua denique tecum
Fine fleam, aut tecum quomodo splene iocer.[1]

Weep now, Heraclitus, even more than you did, for the ills of human life. It teems with far more woes. And you, Democritus, if ever you laughed before, raise your cackle now. Life has become more of a joke. Meanwhile, seeing all this, I consider just how far I can weep with you, how laugh bitterly with you.

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Das CXCII [=191] .

Vom Menschlichen Leben .[2]

Heraclite du alter greiß
Thu jetzt beweinen mit mehr fleiß
Deß Menschlichen Lebens unglück
Dann es steckt voller böser tück
Du aber widerumb erschell
Democrite dein glechter hell
Dann lecherlicher zu keiner zeit
Gewesen ist als jetzt die geit
Dieweil ich aber dieses sich
Betracht ich bey mir fleissiglich
Ob ichs mit dir beweinen sol
Oder mit dir verlachen wol.

Notes:

1.  This is a translation of Anthologia graeca 9.148. For Heraclitus, cf. Emblem 37 ([A67a037]). For the contrast between the despairing tears of Heraclitus (who withdrew from human society) and the sardonic laughter of Democritus when faced with the folly of men, see, among many sources, e.g. Juvenal, Satires 10, 28ff.

2.  The German in certain parts of this emblem is particularly puzzling.


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EMBLEMA CXCIII [=192] .

Aëre quandoque salutem redimen-
dam.

Sometimes money must be spent to purchase safety

Et pedibus segnis, tumida & propendulus alvo,
Hac tamen insidias effugit arte fiber.
Mordicus ipse sibi medicata[1] virilia vellit,
Atque abicit, sese gnarus ob illa peti.
Huius ab exemplo disces non parcere rebus,
Et vitam ut redimas, hostibus aera dare.[2]

Though slow of foot and with swollen belly hanging down, the beaver nonetheless escapes the ambush by this trick: it tears off with its teeth its testicles, which are full of a medicinal substance, and throws them aside, knowing that it is hunted for their sake. - From this creature’s example you will learn not to spare material things, and to give money to the enemy to buy your life.

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Das CXCIII [=192] .

Man sol zu zeiten kein Gelt ansehen
daß man sich ledige.

Ein Biber ob er wol ist träg
Auff sein Füßn und hat ein bauch, läg
Jedoch so kan er artlich frey
Der Hünd empfliehen groß geschrey
Sein Hödlin er im selbs hrauß reist
Und herab hauwt dieweil er weist
Daß man darumb nachstellen thut
Im, dann in der Artzney seinds gut
An diesem nim ein Beyspil ebn
Das du zu erretten dein lebn
Vor deinem Feind kein Gut noch Gelt
Erkargen noch ersparen sölt.

Notes:

1.  Corrected from the errata.

2.  This is based on Aesop, Fables 153, where the same moral is drawn. For the information about the beaver, see Pliny, Natural History 8.47.109; Isidore, Etymologiae (Origines) 12.2.21.


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