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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [A4v p8]

Traictés d’amitié.

II.

Comme au Lut la Muse Italique
Print plaisir, pour les bons accords:
Ainsi toy, Duc, as pris prattique
De rendre tous Princes concords:
Mais si un ou deux sont discors,
La Paix meurt, Guerre prend la place,
Comme l’harmonie en ce corps
Une corde rompue casse.

commentaires.

Pource que le Duc de Milan voulut faire une

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [A5r p9]

confederation & accord entre plusieurs Seigneurs ou
Republiques, Alciat, pour representer le fruict de la
concorde, se sert du lut, (instrument de musique faict
en façon de bateau,) disant que l’harmonie qui sort
d’un lut bien touché & bien accordé, est merveilleuse-
ment douce & plaisante: mais si une des chordes vient
à se rompre, ou qu’elle ne soit pas tendue comme il
faut, lors l’harmonie, qu sort de ce lut, est du tout
maussade & desaggreable: Ainsi, si les Princes &
estats demeurent unis & en bon mesnage les uns a-
vec les autres, il en sortira un grand fruict: mais si
un ou plusieurs viennent à se desunir, lors ne peut on
rien esperer de bon d’une telle ligne.


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FOEDERA ITALORUM.[1]

The Italians’ Alliances.

Hanc cytharam à lembo [=lembi] , quae forma halieutica[2] fertur.
Vendicat, & propriam musa latina sibi.
Accipe Dux, placeat nostrum hoc tibi tempore munus
Quo nova cum sociis foedera inire paras.
Difficile est nisi docto homini tot tendere chordas,
Unaque si fuerit non bene tenta fides.
Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [A3r]Ruptave (quôd facile est) perit omnis gratia conchae,
Illeque praecellens cantus ineptus erit.
Sic Itali coëunt proceres in foedera, concors,
Nil est quod timeas, si tibi constet amor.
At si aliquis desciscat (uti plerunque videmus)
In nihilum illa omnis solvitur harmonia.

This lute, which from its boat shape is called “halieutica”, my Latin Muse now claims for her own service. Receive it, O Duke. May this offering of mine be pleasing to you at this moment when you are preparing to enter into fresh agreements with your allies. It is difficult, except for a man of skill, to tune so many strings, and if one string is out of tune or broken, which so easily happens, all the music of the instrument is lost and its lovely song disjointed. In like manner the leaders of Italy are now forming alliances. There is nothing for you to fear if affection lasts for you and stays in concord. But if any one should slide away, which we often see, that harmony is all dissolved into nothing.

Notes:

1.  In later editions the title is merely Foedera.

2.  A Greek word meaning ‘fishing’ (boat).


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