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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E2r p67]

In victoriam dolo partam.

On victory won by guile

EMBLEMA XLVIII.

Aiacis tumulum lacrymis ego perluo Virtus,
Heu misera albentes dilacerata comas!
Scilicet hoc restabat adhuc, ut iudice Graeco[1]
Vincerer: & caussa stet potiore dolus.[2]

I, Virtue, bedew with tears the tomb of Ajax, tearing, alas, in my grief my whitening hairs. This was all it needed - that I should be worsted with a Greek as judge, and that guile should appear to have the better cause.

Notes:

1.  The Greek assembly awarded the arms of the dead Achilles to the cunning and eloquent Ulysses, not the brave and straight-forward Ajax. For Ajax’ subsequent suicide, see [A91a028].

2.  See Anthologia graeca 7.145.


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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E3r p69]

Dolus in suos.

Treachery against one’s own kind.

EMBLEMA L.

Altilis allectator anas, & caerula pennis,
Assueta ad dominos ire redire suos,
Congeneres cernens volitare per aëra 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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