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SIGNA FORTIUM.

The mark of the brave.

Emblema. 33.

Quae te causa movet volueris Saturnia[1] magni
Ut tumulo insideas ardua Aristomenis[2]:
Hoc moneo, quantum inter aves ego robore praesto,
Tantum semideos inter Aristomenes.
Insideant timidae timidorum busta columbae:
Nos aquilae intrepidis signa benigna damus.

Saturnian bird, what cause brings you to stand with uplifted wings on the tomb of mighty Aristomenes? - I tell you this - as I stand out among the birds in power, so does Aristomenes among the sons of gods. Fearful doves may perch on the graves of the fearful. We eagles give signs of favour to the fearless.

Notes:

1. volucris Saturnia, ‘Saturnian bird’, i.e. the eagle, attendant on Jupiter, son of Saturn.

2. Aristomenes was a Messenian hero of the seventh century BC, of semi-divine origin, who performed incredible exploits while leading his country for many years in resistance to the Spartans. On one occasion an eagle aided his miraculous escape from captivity.


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  • doves, pigeons [34B231] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Strength, Power; 'Fortezza', 'Fortezza d'Animo e di corpo', 'Fortezza del corpo congiunta con la generosit� dell'animo', 'Fortezza & valore del corpo congiunto con la prudenza & virtu del animo', 'Forza'(Ripa) [54A7] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Courage, Bravery, Valiance, Manliness; 'Ardire magnanimo et generoso', 'Gagliardezza', 'Valore', 'Virt� heroica', 'Virt� dell'animo e del corpo' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [54A8(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Cowardice [54AA8] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Fear, Dread; 'Paura', 'Timidit� o Timore', 'Timore' (Ripa) [56DD1] Search | Browse Iconclass

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Ἀντέρως, id est, Amor virtutis.[1]

Anteros, that is, love of virtue

Dic ubi sunt incurvi arcus? ubi tela Cupido?
Mollia queis iuvenum figere corda soles?[2]
Fax ubi tristis? ubi pennae? tres unde corollas
Fert manus? unde aliam tempora cincta gerunt?
Haud mihi vulgari est hospes cum Cypride quicquam,
Ulla voluptatis nos neque forma tulit.
Sed puris hominum succendo mentibus ignes
Disciplinae, animos astraque ad alta traho.
Quatuor eque ipsa texo virtute corollas,[3]
Quarum quae sophiae est, tempora prima tegit.

Tell me, where are your arching bows, where your arrows, Cupid, the shafts which you use to pierce the tender hearts of the young? Where is your hurtful torch, where your wings? Why does your hand hold three garlands? Why do your temples wear a fourth? - Stranger, I have nothing to do with common Venus, nor did any pleasurable shape bring me forth. I light the fires of learning in the pure minds of men and draw their thoughts to the stars on high. I weave four garlands out of virtue’s self and the chief of these, the garland of Wisdom, wreathes my temples.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [M1r p177]

Amour de vertus.

Cupido, ou est larc & flesches dont tu tires?
Ta torche ardent, tes esles dou vient que les retires?
Et que as quatre chappeaux, ung au chef, au bras trois?
Vecy pourquoy: Venus na rien en mes destrois:
De doctrine fais feu, es gens de scavoir chaulx:
Et eslieve leurs sens jusques vers les cieulx haulx.
De vertus ay dresse les chappeaux que je tiens.
Moral, & naturel, que en Logique retiens.
Sapience est sur tous, que plus de soulas preste:
Quest notee au chappeau que jay dessus la teste.

Notes:

1. In the first Wechel edition in 1534, the figure of Anteros wrongly had wings which were subsequently removed.

2. This is a translation of Anthologia graeca 16.201.

3. ‘I weave four garlands out of virtue’s self’, a reference to the four cardinal virtues, justice, temperance, courage and wisdom.


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