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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [m8v p192]

Prudentes.

The Wise.

VIII.

Iane bifrons, qui transacta futuraque calles,
Quique retro sannas sicut & antè 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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    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [I8r f72r]

    PRUDENS MAGIS QUAM
    loquax.

    Wise head, close mouth.

    Emblema. 19.

    Noctua Cecropiis[1] insignia praestat Athenis,
    Inter aves sani noctua consilii,
    Armiferae merito obsequiis sacrata Minervae,
    Garrula quo cornix cesserat ante loco.[2]

    The owl provides the symbol for Athens, Cecrops’ city, for among the birds the owl is known for wise counsel. Deservedly was it dedicated to the service of weapon-bearing Minerva, in the place vacated by the chattering crow.

    Notes:

    1.  Cecrops was a legendary wise early king of Athens, a city renowned as a place of learning. See above, Emblem 5 ([A15a005]), line 7.

    2.  garrula quo cornix cesserat, ‘vacated by the chattering crow’. The crow was dismissed from Athena’s service for telling tales, and was replaced by the owl. See Ovid, Metamorphoses, 2.562-5. This story is represented in Aneau, ‘Periculum in terra, periculum in mari’ ([FANa029]).


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