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Che l’huomo dee cosiderar quello, ch’egli ha operato, & quello c’ha lasciato d’operare

Man must consider his own actions and that which he has ceased from doing.


Pythagora insegnò, che l’huom dovesse
Considerar con ogni somma cura
L’opra, che d’egli fatta il giorno havesse,
S’ella eccedeva il dritto e la misura,
E quella, che da far pretermettesse.
Cio fa la Grù, che’l volo suo misura,
Onde ne piedi suol portar un sasso
Per non cessar, o gir troppo’alto, o basso.


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Prudentes.

The Wise.

Iane bifrons, qui iam transacta futuraque calles,
Quique retro sannas sicut & ante vides, [1]
Tot te cur oculis, tot fingunt vultibus? an quòd
Circunspectum hominem forma fuisse docet?

Two-headed Janus, you know about what has already happened and what is yet to come, you see the jeering faces behind just as you see them in front. Why do they represent you with so many eyes, why with so many faces? Is it because this form tells us that you were a man of circumspection?

Notes:

1.  quique retro sannas, sicut et ante, vides, ‘you see the jeering faces behind just as you see them in front’, a line based on Persius, Satirae, 1.58-62.


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