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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [M5v]

Captivus ob gulam.

Caught by greed

Regnator penus, & mensae corrosor[1] herilis
Ostrea mus summis vidit hiulca labris.
Queis teneram apponens barbam falsa ossa momordit,
Illa recluserunt[2] tacta repente domum.
Deprensum & tetro tenuerunt carcere furem,
Semet in obscurum qui dederat tumulum.[3]

A mouse, king of the pantry, nibbler at the master’s table, saw oysters with their shells just slightly open. Applying his sensitive whiskers, he nibbled the deceptive bone. The oysters, when touched, suddenly slammed shut their house and held the thief, caught red-handed, in a noisome prison, a thief who had put himself into a lightless tomb.

Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [M6r]

Prins pour la gueule.

Une suinttre en son escaille estant,
Entreouverte (comme il advient).
Fut ung jour la souris sentant,
Qui pour sa chair ronger survient.
Lors de sestraindre luy souvient.
La souris est au groing surprise.
Tel chastoy aux glotons convient:
Qui tousjous font chatte entreprise.

Notes:

1.  Textual variant - 1550 has Regnatorque penus, mensaeque arrosor

2.  Textual variant - 1550 has Ast ea clauserunt

3.  This poem is a translation of Anthologia graeca 9.86.


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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [M5v p186]

De la vie humaine.

Apostrophe.

Pleure (Heraclit) la vie de ce monde:
Car plus en mal que jamais elle abonde.
Ry Democrit, si tu ris onquesmais:
Car plus y ha ą mocquer que jamais.
Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [M6r p187] Cela voyant ne say que faire doy.
Avec toy rire, ou plorer avec toy.[1]

Heraclit perdit les yeulx ą force
de plorer les calamitez du monde,
Democrit se fendit la gueulle jus-
que aulx oreilles, ą force de rire
des follies du monde. Or est il enco
re doubte s’il y ha plus ą plorer, ou
plus ha [=a] rire, des maulx, ou des fol-
lies qui y sont, ou lequel estoit le
plus sage, ou le plus fol des deux.

Notes:

1.  This is a translation of Anthologia graeca 9.148. For Heraclitus, cf. [A58a016]. For the contrast between the despairing tears of Heraclitus (who withdrew from human society) and the sardonic laughter of Democritus when faced with the folly of men, see, among many sources, e.g. Juvenal, Satires 10, 28ff.


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