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In mortem praeproperam.

Untimely death

EMBLEMA CLVI.

Qui teneras forma allexit, torsitque puellas,
Pulchrior & tota nobilis urbe puer,
Occidit ante diem, nulli mage flendus, Aresti,
Qum tibi, cui casto iunctus amore fuit.
Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [M6v p188]Ergo illi tumulum tanti monumenta doloris
Astruis, & querulis vocibus astra feris.
Me sine abis, dilecte? neque amplis ibimus un?
Nec mecum in studiis otia grata teres?
Sed te terra teget, sed fati, Gorgonis ora,
Delphinesque tui signa dolenda dabunt.

That handsome lad, famed throughout all the city, who attracted and tormented tender-hearted girls with his beauty, has perished before his time, mourned by no one more than you, Arestius, to whom he was joined in chaste affection. Therefore you build him a tomb as a memorial of such great love and assail the heavens with cries of grief: Beloved, are you gone away without me? Shall we never be together again? Will you never again spend happy leisure hours with me in study? But the earth will cover you, a Gorgon’s head and dolphins shall provide doleful symbols of your fate.


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  • death of a young person [31E1430] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • lamentation (~ burial rites) [4.20E+133] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • student love [49B4423] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Pain, Sorrow, Sadness; 'Dolore', 'Dolore di Zeusi' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [56BB1(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Fidelity in Friendship; 'Confermatione dell'Amicitia', 'Fede nell'Amicitia' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [56F231(+4):31E] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Mortality, Extinction of Life [58BB1] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • historical person (with NAME) other representations to which the NAME of a historical person may be attached (with NAME of person) [61B2(ARESTIUS)3] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • historical person (with NAME) other representations to which the NAME of a historical person may be attached (with NAME of person) [61B2(ARIOSTO, Ludovico)3] Search | Browse Iconclass

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Opulenti hereditas.

The rich man’s legacy

EMBLEMA CLVIII.

Patroclum falsis rapiunt hinc Tros in armis,
Hinc socii, atque omnis turba Pelasga vetat.
Obtinet exuvias Hector, Graecique cadaver.[1]
Haec fabella agitur, cm vir opimus obit.
Maxima rixa oritur, tandem sed transigit heres,
Et corvis aliquid, vulturiisque sinit.[2]

On that side the Trojans are carrying off Patroclus in his deceptive armour, on this, his co-fighters and all the Greek host try to stop them. Hector obtains the spoils, the Greeks the body. This story is played out when a rich man dies. A great quarrelling arises, but eventually the heir brings the argument to an end and leaves something for crows and vultures.

Notes:

1. For the death of Patroclus, see Homer, Iliad, 16.784ff. He borrowed Achilles’ armour to fight the Trojans when Achilles refused, and was killed by Hector, who took the armour.

2. ‘Vulture’ was a term used to refer to people who hang round rich persons, hoping for a legacy See Erasmus, Adagia, 614 (Si vultur es, cadaver exspecta).


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