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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [S4r p279]

Vespertilio.

The bat

EMBLEMA LXI.

Assumpsisse suum volucri ex Mineide nomen,[1]
Socraticum auctores Chaerephoonta ferunt.[2]
Fusca viro facies, & stridens vocula, tali
Hunc hominem potuit commaculare nota.

Writers tell us that Chaerephon, Socrates’ follower, got his particular name from the winged daughter of Minyas. It was his sallow complexion and squeaky little voice that gave rise to such a slur to sully his reputation.

Notes:

1.  For the transformation of the daughters of Minyas (the founder of the earliest race of Greeks) into bats - for refusing to worship Dionysus - see Ovid, Metamorphoses, 4.389ff.

2.  Chaerophon, a distinguished disciple of Socrates, was nick-named ‘The Bat’ and ‘Boxwood’ for his pale complexion and poor health, supposedly brought on by excessive study. See Aristophanes, Aves, 1564; Philostratus, Vitae sophistarum, 1.482.


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  • study and diversion [49A1] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • studying at night [49B4411] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Minyas' daughters changed into bats: having aroused Bacchus' anger by weaving instead of worshipping him, the daughters of Minyas, Leuconoe (Leucippe), Alcithoe and Arsippe, are changed into bats by the god (Ovid, Metamorphoses IV 399) [97CC7] 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(CHAEREPHON)3] Search | Browse Iconclass

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Section: STULTITIA (Folly). View all emblems in this section.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [E3v p70]

Aliud.[1]

Another on the bat.

Vespere quae tantům volitat, quae lumine lusca est,
Quae cům alas gestet, caetera muris habet,
Ad res diversas trahitur. mala nomina primům
Signat, quae latitant iudiciumque timent.
Inde & philosophos, qui dum caelestia quaerunt,
Caligant oculis, falsaque sola vident.
Tandem & versutos, cům clam sectentur utrumque,
Acquirunt neutra qui sibi parte fidem.

The creature that flies only in the evening, that has poor sight, that is endowed with wings, but has other features belonging to a mouse, is used to represent various things. First it indicates persons of bad standing who lie low and fear being called to account. Next philosophers, who, while they search the heavens, develop blurred vision and only see what is false. Lastly, wily men, who secretly court both parties, but do not win trust on either side.

Notes:

1.  This is the same image as Emblem 61.


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