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EMBLEMA CLXXIX [=178] .

Vespertilio.

The bat

Assumpsisse suum volucri ex Meneide nomen,[1]
Socraticum authores Choerephoonta ferunt[2]
Fusca viro facies, & stridens vocula, tali
Hunc hominem potuit commaculare nota.

Writers tell us that Chaerephon, Socrates’ follower, got his particular name from the winged daughter of Minyas. It was his sallow complexion and squeaky little voice that gave rise to such a slur to sully his reputation.

Das CLXXIX [=178] .

Fledermauß.

Die Gschichtschreiber geben zuverston
Daß der Socratisch Cherophon
Sein namen empfangen hab drauß
Von der Meneischen Fledermauß
Ein Mann so hat ein braun angsicht
Und ein stimm zu zischen gericht
Disen Menschen man mercken kan
Mit diesem zeichen, und verstan.

Notes:

1.  For the transformation of the daughters of Minyas (the founder of the earliest race of Greeks) into bats - for refusing to worship Dionysus - see Ovid, Metamorphoses, 4.389ff.

2.  Chaerophon, a distinguished disciple of Socrates, was nick-named ‘The Bat’ and ‘Boxwood’ for his pale complexion and poor health, supposedly brought on by excessive study. See Aristophanes, Aves, 1564; Philostratus, Vitae sophistarum, 1.482.


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    • flying mammals: bat [25F28(BAT)] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • study and diversion [49A1] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • studying at night [49B4411] Search | Browse Iconclass
    • Minyas' daughters changed into bats: having aroused Bacchus' anger by weaving instead of worshipping him, the daughters of Minyas, Leuconoe (Leucippe), Alcithoe and Arsippe, are changed into bats by the god (Ovid, Metamorphoses IV 399) [97CC7] 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(CHAEREPHON)3] Search | Browse Iconclass

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    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [Y8v f176v]

    IN EOS QUI SUPRA VIRES
    quicquam audent.

    Those who venture on what is beyond their powers.

    Emblema 58.

    Dum dormit, dulci recreat dum corpora somno
    Sub picea, & clavam, caeteraque arma tenet.
    Alciden Pygmaea manus[1] prosternere letho
    Posse putat, vires non bene docta suas.
    Excitus ipse, velut pulices, sic proterit hostem,
    Et saevi implicitum pelle leonis[2] agit.

    While Alceus’ descendant was sleeping, while he was refreshing his body with gentle slumber, beneath a spruce tree, keeping hold of his club and other weapons, a band of pygmies thought they could lay him low in death, not really grasping the limit of their powers. But he, waking up, crushed the foe like fleas, and carried them off, wrapped up in the fierce lion’s skin.

    Notes:

    1.  Hercules’ confrontation with the pygmies is described by Philostratus, Eikones 2.22.

    2.  ‘the fierce lion’s skin’, the skin of the Nemean lion which Hercules always wore after slaying the beast. (See [A15a136], notes; [A15a179]).


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