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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E5v p74]

Contre les fraudulens.

Le Stellion[1] ha mainte noire goutte
Petit Lezard, qui dens les creux se boutte,
D’envie, & dol porte marques infames,
Las trop cogneu par les jalouses femmes:
Car qui vin boit ou estaindre l’on face
Un Stellion: lentileuse ha la face.
Ainsi par vin la beaulté effacée
La vengence est de L’amie laissée.

Nature ha mis apparentes enseignes du mal, es
bestes dangereuses, affin de s’en garder. Comme
au Stellion, petites marques & taches rousses es
parses comme estoilles, Lesquelles viennent au
visage de ceulx, & celles, qui ont beu vin ou soit
mort un Stellion. Et ainsi par telle fraude soubz
couleur de donner collation, Les jalouses fem-
mes deforment les beaulx visages de celles à qui
elles portent envie.

Notes:

1.  Latin equivalent of stellio, ‘the starred gecko’. See Ovid, Metamorphoses, 5.461 for the explanation of the name stellio.


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    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E4r]

    IN ADULATORES.

    Flatterers

    De Chameleonte vide Plinium naturalis historia
    libro. VIII. Cap. XXXIII.

    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E4v]

    Semper hiat, semper tenuem qua vescitur auram[1],
    Reciprocat chamaeleon[2].
    Et mutat faciem varios sumitque colores,
    Praeter rubrum vel candidum.[3]
    Sic & adulator populari vescitur aura,[4]
    Hiansque cuncta devorat.
    Et solum mores imitatur principis atros.
    Albi & pudici nescius.

    The Chameleon is always breathing in and out with open mouth the bodiless air on which it feeds; it changes its appearance and takes on various colours, except for red and white. - Even so the flatterer feeds on the wind of popular approval and gulps down all with open mouth. He imitates only the black features of the prince, knowing nothing of the white and pure.

    Notes:

    1.  Corrected from the Errata and by hand in this copy.

    2.  This creature was supposed to feed only on air, keeping its mouth wide open to suck it in. See Pliny, Natural History 8.51.122. For the chameleon cf. Erasmus, Parabolae pp.144, 241, 252.

    3.  ‘except for red and white’. See Pliny, ib.

    4.  ‘the wind of popular approval’. This is a common metaphor in Latin, e.g. Horace, Odes 3.2.20, ‘at the behest of the wind of popular approval.’


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