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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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Malè parta malè dilabuntur.[1]

Ill gotten, ill spent

EMBLEMA CXXVIII.

Miluus edax,[2] nimiae quem nausea torserat escae,
Hei mihi, mater, ait, viscera ab ore fluunt.
Illa autem, quid fles? cur haec tua viscera credas,
Qui rapto vivens sola aliena vomis?

A voracious kite, which had eaten too much, was racked with vomiting. ‘O dear, mother’, it said, ‘entrails are pouring out of my mouth.’ She however replied: ‘What are you crying about? Why do you think these are your entrails? You live by plunder and vomit only what belongs to others.’

Notes:

1.  The title is proverbial. See Cicero, Philippics, 2.65.

2.  ‘A voracious kite’. The kite was a figure of greed and extortion.


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  • Gluttony, Intemperance, 'Gula'; 'Gola', 'Ingordigia', 'Ingordigia overo Avidità', 'Voracità' (Ripa) ~ personification of one of the Seven Deadly Sins [11N35] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • animal 'educating the young', playing with young [25F(+422)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • theft [44G544] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Bad, Evil, Wrong (+ emblematical representation of concept) [52B5112(+4):55A1(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Squandering, Extravagance, Prodigality, Waste; 'Prodigalità' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [55C11(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass

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