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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [Y5r f233r]

Vel post mortem formidolosi.

Terrifying even after death

Emblema clxx.

Caetera mutescent, coriumque silebit ovillum,
Si confecta lupi tympana pelle sonent.
Hanc membrana ovium sic exhorrescit, ut hostem,
Exanimis quamvis non ferat exanimem,
Sic cute detracta Ziscas, in tympana versus,
Boëmos potuit vincere pontifices.[1]

All others will fall mute, the skin of sheep will be silent, if drums made of wolf-hide resound. The vellum of sheep so fears the wolf-skin, that though dead it cannot endure its dead enemy. Even so Cischas, flayed and turned into a drum, was able to triumph over the priests of Bohemia.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [Y5v f233v]

NOn facilè obliteratur opinio in hominum con-
cepta mentibus, ut enim quorundam insignis
virtus vel post mortem adeò amabilis est, ut eius non
possit esse non iucunda mentio: Ita nonnulli fuere
quos propter insignem quandam feritatem abomi-
namur vel pridem extinctos, eorúmque memoriam
aversamur, ut aliquam praesentem perniciem.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [Y6r f234r]

Sur celuy qui se rend espouventable
mesme apres sa mort.

Pres la peau du Mouton si de la peau du Loup
On fait tabour sonnant, le son se perd à coup
De la peau du Mouton, qui se taist & frissonne,
Approchee qu’elle est, quand la peau du Loup sonne,
Parchemin de Mouton comme ayant grand horreur
Du parchemin du Loup, bien qu’il ne face peur,
Car ils n’ont sentiment, & si n’ont point de vie.
Ainsi Ziseas apres qu’il eut l’ame ravie,
Escorché de sa peau, des tabours furent faits,
Dont les Boëmiens Pontifs furent deffaits.

ON n’efface pas bien aisément une opi-
nion qui est desja enracinee en la te-
ste des hommes. car comme l’insigne vertu
de quelques uns est rendue si aymable voi-
re apres la mort, que la memoire en est fort
agreable: aussi aucuns ont esté que nous ab-
horrons à raison de leur extreme cruauté,
quoy qu’ils soient morts ja de long temps,
desquels la seule memoire nous vient à con-
trecoeur, comme un mal presentement per-


1.  For the story behind this epigram, see the commentary in the Tozzi edition of Alciato’s emblems (Padua, 1621). ‘Cischas’ is Jan Ziska (c.1370-1425), a Bohemian military leader who supported the Hussites, destroying Catholic churches and attacking the clergy. He waged a long and successful military campaign which compelled the Emperor Sigismund to offer the Hussites religious liberty. Ziska died of plague, and is said to have ordered that his corpse be flayed and the skin made into a drum, the sound of which would put the enemy to flight. (His real name was Jan z Trocnova (‘of Trocnov’), Zizka being Czech for ‘one-eyed’, having lost an eye in a skirmish during the Battle of Grunwald in 1410).

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Iconclass Keywords

Relating to the image:

Relating to the text:

  • priest (Roman Catholic) [11P3121] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • beasts of prey, predatory animals: wolf (+ skin, fleece, hide, fur, leather) [25F23(WOLF)(+351)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • sheep (+ skin, fleece, hide, fur, leather) [47I213(+9351)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Authority, Power; 'Dominio', 'Giurisdittione' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [53C11(+4):31E30] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Alarm, Fright; 'Spavento', 'Terrore' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [56DD32(+4)] 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(ZIZCA, Jan)3] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • geographical names of countries, regions, mountains, rivers, etc. (names of cities and villages excepted) (with NAME) [61D(BOHEMIA)] Search | Browse Iconclass

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