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Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [N4v p200]

Eloquentia fortitudine praestantior.[1]

Eloquence superior to strength

Arcum laeva tenet, rigidam fert dextera clavam,
Contegit & Nemees corpora nuda leo.
Herculis haec igitur facies? non convenit illud,
Qud vetus & senio tempora cana gerit.
Quid qud lingua illi levibus traiecta cathenis?
Queis fissa facili allicit aure viros?
An ne qud Alciden lingua non robore Galli
Praestantem populis iura dedisse ferunt?
Cedunt arma togae,[2] & quamvis durissima corda
Eloquio pollens ad sua vota trahit.

His left hand holds a bow, his right hand a stout club, the lion of Nemea clothes his bare body. So this is a figure of Hercules. But he is old and his temples grizzled with age - that does not fit. What of the fact that his tongue has light chains passing through it, by which he draws men along with ready ears pierced? The reason is surely that the Gauls say that Alceus’ descendant excelled in eloquence rather than might and gave laws to the nations. - Weapons yield to the arts of peace, and even the hardest of hearts the skilled speaker can lead where he will.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [N5r p201]

Eloquence vault mieulx que force.

Larc en la main, en lautre la massue,
Peau de lyon estant cy aperceue,
Pour Hercules me faict ce vieillart croire.
Mais ce quil a marque de si grand gloire:
Que mener gens enchainez a sa langue.
Entendre veult, quil feist tant bien harengue,
Que les Francois pour ses dits de merveilles,
Furent ainsi que pris par les oreilles.
Si donc il a par loix & ordonnances
Range les gens, plustost que par vaillances,
Dira lon pas (comme est verite)
Que lespee a lieu aux livres quicte?
Et que ung dur cueur par saiges mieulx se range,
Que gros effort son asprete ne change?
Pource Hercules ne fait pas grandes forces:
Et si sont gens apres luy grandes courses.

Notes:

1. This epigram is closely based on Lucian’s essay, The Gallic Hercules.

2. Cf. Cicero’s notorious line, Cedant arma togae, concedat laurea linguae, ‘Let weapons yield to the arts of peace, let laurels yield to eloquence’ (quoted in Quintilian, Institutio oratoria 11.1.24).


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  • Europeans (with NAME) [32B311(FRENCHMEN)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • 'litterae', symbolic representations, allegories and emblems ~ literature; 'Lettere' (Ripa) [48C90] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Power of Eloquence; 'Forza sottoposta all'Eloquenza' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [52D31(+4)] 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 & virt del animo', 'Forza' (Ripa) [54A7] Search | Browse Iconclass

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Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [H6r p123]

Que presto viene el mal y el
remedio tarde.

Ottava rhima.

Despues que Juppiter ech d’el cielo
A Atis,[1] ay gran mal en los mortales,
Que ella volando, no ay en este suelo
Cosa que no la enturbie con mill males
Tras esta las tres Litas con buen zelo
Remedian los desastres humanales.[2]
Mas no pueden hasta muy largos aos
(Porque son cojas) soldar tantos daos.

Notes:

1. ‘Despues que Juppiter echd’el cielo / A Atis’. See Homer, Iliad 19. 125ff.

2. ‘las tres Litas’. See Homer, Iliad 9.502ff. Ate means ‘Mischief’, Litae, ‘Prayers’. Ate was cast out of Olympus to bring harm to mankind, a personification of humans being led astray. The Litae were a personification of prayers offered in repentance.


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  • Slow Motion (+ emblematical representation of concept) [51MM1(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Viciousness, Naughtiness (+ emblematical representation of concept) [57AA6(+4):54D4(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Revenge, Requital, Retaliation; 'Vendetta' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [57AA741(+4):54DD4(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Jupiter seizes Ate by her hair and hurls her down from Olympus, possibly because of the delayed birth of Hercules (+ variant) [92B143(+0)] Search | Browse Iconclass

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