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Nil reliqui.

Nothing left

Scilicet hoc deerat, post tot mala denique nostris
Locustae ut raperent, quidquid inesset, agris.[1]
Vidimus innumeras euro[2] duce tendere turmas,
Qualia non Atylae castrave Xerxis erant.[3]
Hae foenum, milium, corda omnia consumpserunt;
Spes & in angusto est, stant nisi vota super.

This was all it needed - that after so many misfortunes, finally locusts should seize whatever was in our fields. We have seen countless squadrons encamped, led by Eurus, hosts such as Attila and Xerxes never had. These creatures have eaten up all hay, millet and later crops. There is little scope for hope unless our prayers prevail.

Notes:

1.  Referring to a plague of locusts in North Italy in 1541/2 .

2.  Eurus was the wind from the East.

3.  Attila the Hun and Xerxes, King of Persia, were leaders who invaded the Roman Empire and Greece with vast armies in mid fifth century AD and 480 BC respectively. Xerxes’ invasion and Attila’s first invasion both came from the east.


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Dolus in suos.

Treachery against one’s own kind.

Altilis allectator anas, & caerula pennis
Adsueta ad dominos ire redire suos,
Congeneres cernens volitare per aera turmas
Garrit, in illarum se recipitque gregem,
Praetensa incautas donec sub retia ducat.
Obstrepitant captae, conscia at ipsa silet.
Perfida cognato se sanguine polluit ales,
Officiosa aliis, exitiosa suis.[1]

The well-fed decoy duck with its green-blue wings is trained to go out and return to its masters. When it sees squadrons of its relations flying through the air, it quacks and joins itself to the flock, until it can draw them, off their guard, into the outspread nets. When caught they raise a protesting clamour, but she, knowing what she has done, keeps silence. The treacherous bird defiles itself with related blood, servile to others, deadly to its own kind.

Notes:

1.  Cf. Aesop, Fables, 282, where the decoy birds are pigeons.


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