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Che la lettera occide, e lo spirito porge vita.

The letter kills and the spirit gives life


I fratelli, che nacquer de la terra
D’i denti seminati del Serpente,
Fecero insieme l’uno a l’altro guerra.
E s’occisero molti parimente,
Palla serbonne alcun, che su la terra
Diposer l’arme, e unirsi finalmente.
Cadmo trov le lettre, ond’; inquieta
L’alma, se la prudenza non l’acqueta.


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  • 'litterae', symbolic representations, allegories and emblems ~ literature; 'Lettere' (Ripa) [48C90] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • symbolic representations, allegories and emblems ~ science, 'Scientia'; 'Scienza', 'Studio' (Ripa) [49C0] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • invention of letters [49L10] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Wisdom; 'Sapienza', 'Sapienza humana', 'Sapienza vera' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [52A51(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • proverbs, sayings, etc. (with TEXT) [86(LITERA OCCIDIT: SPIRITUS VIVIFICAT)] Search | Browse Iconclass

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Section: PAX (Peace). View all emblems in this section.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [M8r p191]

Ex bello pax.

Peace succeeding to war

En galea, intrepidus quam miles gesserat: & quae
Saepius hostili sparsa cruore fuit.
Parta pace apibus tenuis concessit in usum
Alveoli: atque favos grataque mella gerit.
Arma procul iaceant: fas sit tunc sumere bellum:
Quando aliter pacis non potes arte frui.[1]

See here a helmet which a fearless soldier previously wore and which was often spattered with enemy blood. After peace was won, it retired to be used as a narrow hive for bees; it holds honey-combs and nice honey. - Let weapons lie far off; let it be right to embark on war only when you cannot in any other way enjoy the art of peace.

Notes:

1. Cf. Anthologia graeca, 6.236, where bees nest in what were once the beaks (projections at the prow) of war-galleys.


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