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Section: LES ARBRES. View all emblems in this section.

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Le Sapin.

Le Sapin croist es mons, & sert en leau [=l’eau] .
En lieu contraire, est souvent profict beau.[1]

Le Sapin croissant es haultes montaignes, descend
es basses rivieres: pour faire plus grand profict.
Car pour estre resineux, & legier, il est propre
faire basteaux. Ainsi a plusieurs est expedient
changer de lieu, & se mettre de plus hault, en plus
bas pour meilleur usage.

Notes:

1. This is because it grows strong by withstanding the gales and harsh weather. Contrast Anthologia Graeca, 9.30ff, 105, and the much-translated 376 for an opposing view of the fir tree: ‘how can the fir, storm-tossed while growing on land, resist the gales at sea?’ 9.31 was translated by Alciato (Selecta epigrammata, p. 98).


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Ilex.

The holm-oak

Duritie nimia[1] qud sese rumperet ilex,
Symbola civilis seditionis habet.

Because the holm-oak splits spontaneously through excessive inflexibility, it provides symbols for civic discord.

Notes:

1. Duritie nimia, ‘excessive inflexibility’. Cf. Pliny, Natural History, 16.73.186 (tota ossea est ilex, ‘the holm-oak is entirely bone-like’).


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