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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [D3r]

NEC QUESTIONI
quidem cedendum.

Do not yield even to torture

Cecropia effictam quam cernis in arce leaenam,
Harmodii an nescis hospes, amica fuit?
Sic animum placuit monstrare viraginis acrem,
More ferae, nomen vel quia tale fuit.[1]
Quod fidibus contorta suo non prodidit ullum,
Indicio, elinguem reddidit Iphicrates.[2]

This lioness that you see represented on the Athenian citadel was Harmodius’s lover - stranger, you must know the story. This was how they decided to proclaim the brave woman’s fierce spirit, by representing her as a lioness. Besides, her name was Lioness too. Tortured on the rack, she betrayed no-one by her evidence, and so Iphicrates represented the beast without a tongue.

Notes:

1.  Later editions read tulit.

2.  Harmodius and Aristogeiton conspired to kill Hipparchus, the brother of the Athenian tyrant Hippias. Harmodius was killed, Aristogeiton arrested and tortured. Also tortured was Leaena (‘Lioness’) a courtesan, beloved of Harmodius, as she too was suspected of being in the conspiracy. She however revealed nothing. After the fall of Hippias, the two men were treated as tyrannicides and bronze statues were erected in their honour (509 BC). To avoid appearing to honour a courtesan, the Athenians had Leaena represented by Iphicrates (or Amphicrates) as a lioness without a tongue, indicating both her name and the reason for remembering her. See Pliny, Natural History 34.19.72; Plutarch, De garrulitate 505E.


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  • beasts of prey, predatory animals: lion (+ female animal) [25F23(LION)(+23)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • beasts of prey, predatory animals: lion (+ postures of hind leg(s) of animal(s)) [25F23(LION)(+56)] Search | Browse Iconclass

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  • tongue [31A22141] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • torture [44G330] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Taciturnity; 'Secretezza', 'Secretezza overo Taciturnità' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [52DD3(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • names of cities and villages (with NAME) [61E(ATHENS)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • (story of) Harmodius and Aristogiton representations to which the NAME of a person from classical history may be attached [98B(HARMODIUS & ARISTOGITON)3] 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(IPHICRATES)3] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • female persons from classical history (with NAME) suffering, misfortune of person from classical history [98C(LAENA)6] Search | Browse Iconclass

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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [I5v p138]

In temerarios.

The reckless

Aspicis aurigam currus Phaëthonta[1] paterni
Ignivomos ausum flectere Solis equos.
Maxima qui postquàm terris incendia sparsit.
Est temere insesso lapsus ab axe miser.
Sic plaerique rotis fortunae ad sydera Reges
Evecti, ambitio quos iuvenilis agit,
Post magnam humani generis clademque suamque,
Cunctorum poenas denique dant scelerum.

You see here Phaethon, driving his father’s chariot, and daring to guide the fire-breathing steeds of the Sun. After spreading great conflagrations over the earth, the wretched boy fell from the car he had so rashly mounted. - Even so, the majority of kings are borne up to heaven on the wheels of Fortune, driven by youth’s ambition. After they have brought great disaster on the human race and themselves, they finally pay the penalty for all their crimes.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [I6r p139]

Contre temeraires.

Phaeton trop fier pour son lignage,
Le Soleil conduire voulut:
Les chevaulx trop fors pour son aage,
Lont pugny de ce quil esleut.
Maint homme est, que mieulx luy valut,
Que en jeune aage eust moins eu richesse:
Car apres estat dissolut,
Il chet soubz le mal qui le presse.

Notes:

1.  Phaethon, the son of Apollo, the sun-god. The myth referred to here is told in Ovid, Metamorphoses 1.748 - 2.349. Both Phaethon and Icarus ([A39a053]) are types of those who aim too high and do not recognise their proper sphere.


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