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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [P1r p225]

Mesdisance.

LXVII.

D’Archiloque[1] au tumbeau la guespe est engravee,
Pour monstrer que sa langue estoit envenimee.

Commentaires.

Archiloque fut si picquant & mordant en sa
poësie, que par ses poignants jambes il contraignit
Lycambe, son beau pere, de s’aller estrangler. De là
est venu qu’on a appelé Archiloques tous ceux qui
ont escrit d’un stile ainsi venimeux. Les guespes sont
engravees sur son tumbeau, non seulement pource
qu’elles sont enrouëes & mordantes, mais aussi pour-
ce que d’elles on ne tire ny plaisir ny proffit.

Notes:

1.  Archilochus was an eighth-century BC poet, author of much (now fragmentary) verse, including satire. This last was considered in antiquity to be excessively abusive and violent. See Horace, Ars Poetica, 79; also Erasmus, Adagia, 60 (Irritare crabrones).


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    Relating to the text:

    • insects: wasp (+ animals used symbolically) [25F711(WASP)(+1)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • grave, tomb [4.20E+32] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • Calumny, Detraction; 'Biasimo vitioso', 'Calunnia', 'Detrattione', 'Maledicenza' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [57BB25(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • male persons from classical history (with NAME) representations to which the NAME of a person from classical history may be attached [98B(ARCHILOCHUS)3] Search | Browse Iconclass

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    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [M2v p180]

    La clemence du Prince.

    Ce que le Roy des guespes rien ne poingt,[1]
    (Quoy qu’il soit grand.) Et d’aguillon n’ha poinct
    Monstre ung Seigneur doulx aulx siens, comme amys:
    Et les sainctz droictz à gens de bien commis.

    Le Roy des Guespes, & aveilles
    est deux fois plus grand, & fort
    que les aultres, & si n’ha point
    d’aguillon picquant, & vene-
    neux, comme les aultres. Ainsi
    ung bon Prince plus est puis-
    sant, plus est clement, & moins
    nuysant, tel que fut le Magni-
    ficque Jule Caesar.

    Notes:

    1.  According to Pliny, Natural History, 11.21.74, wasps do not have ‘kings’: it is the ‘mother’ wasps that are without stings. On the other hand, the ‘king’ bee (the ancients believed the queen bee to be male) and its lack of sting, or refusal to use its sting, was often mentioned; e.g. Aelian, De natura animalium, 5.10; Pliny, ibid., 17.52. For the analogy with kingship, see e.g. Seneca, De Clementia, 1.19; Erasmus, Adagia, 2601 (Scarabaeus aquilam quaerit).


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