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Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [R1v p258]

Ei, qui semel sua prodegerit, aliena credi
non oportere.

Others’ property should not be entrusted to a person who has once squandered his own

EMBLEMA LIIII.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [R2r p259]

Colchidos in gremio nidum quid congeris? eheu,
Nescia cur pullos tam mal credis, avis?
Dira parens Medea suos saevissima natos
Perdidit, & speras parcat ut illa tuis?[1]

Why do you build your nest in the bosom of the woman from Colchis? Alas, ignorant bird, why do you entrust your nestlings so mistakenly? That frightful mother, Medea, in her savagery slew her own children. Do you expect her to spare yours?

Notes:

1. This is based on Anthologia graeca 9.346, a much-translated epigram, on the subject of a swallow that built her nest on a representation of Medea. Colchidos, ‘of the woman from Colchis’, refers to Medea, from Colchis on the Black Sea, who slew her children by Jason, leader of the Argonauts, to avenge his unfaithfulness. See further [A21a078].


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  • birds (+ animals nesting; making nests, lodges, webs, etc.) [25F3(+4712)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Squandering, Extravagance, Prodigality, Waste; 'Prodigalità' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [55C11(+4)] Search | Browse Iconclass
  • Misplaced Trust, False Confidence, 'Pax Falsa'; 'Speranza fallace' (Ripa) (+ emblematical representation of concept) [56D29(+4)] 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 [E4r p71]

Ira.

Rage.

Alcaeam veteres caudam dixre Leonis,
Qua stimulante iras concipit ille graves.
Lutea cm surgit bilis, crudescit & atro
Felle dolor, furias excitat indomitas.[1]

The ancients called the lion’s tail alcaea, for under its stimulus he takes on dreadful fury. When the yellow bile rises and his temper grows savage with the black gall, the tail incites his indomitable rage.

Notes:

1. The Greek word ἀλκαία was supposedly derived from ἀλκή ‘strength’ (see Emblem 3, n.3, [A50a003]). The Etymologicum Magnum, an ancient Greek lexicon, defines ἀλκαία as ‘properly the tail of the lion, because it urges him on to strength (ἀλκή)’. Pliny, Natural History, 8.16.49, describes how the lion’s tail lashes with increasing fury and spurs him on. See also Aelian, De natura animalium, 5.39.


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