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Section: ARBORES (Trees). View all emblems in this section.

Link to an image of this page Link to an image of this page [O4v p216]

Abies.

The fir tree

Apta fretis abies in montibus editur altis:
Est & in adversis maxima commoditas.[1]

The fir tree that is fit to sail the sea grows high up on the hills. Even in hard circumstances, there is great advantage to be found.

Notes:

1. This is because it grows strong by withstanding the gales and harsh weather. Contrast Anthologia Graeca, 9.30ff, 105, and the much-translated 376 for an opposing view of the fir tree: “how can the fir, storm-tossed while growing on land, resist the gales at sea?” 9.31 was translated by Alciato (Selecta epigrammata, p. 98).


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Section: ARBORES (Trees). View all emblems in this section.

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Ilex.

The holm-oak

Duritie nimia[1] qud sese rumperet ilex,
Symbola civilis seditionis habet.

Because the holm-oak splits spontaneously through excessive inflexibility, it provides symbols for civic discord.

Notes:

1. Duritie nimia, ‘excessive inflexibility’. Cf. Pliny, Natural History, 16.73.186 (tota ossea est ilex, ‘the holm-oak is entirely bone-like’).


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