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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [N5v p202]

Morus.

The mulberry

XLIIII.

Serior at Morus nunquam nisi frigore lapso
Germinat,[1] & sapiens nomina falsa[2] gerit.

On the other hand, the mulberry is late, and never until the frost is past does it shoot; though wise, it bears a false name.

Notes:

1.  See Pliny, Natural History, 16.25.102: “the mulberry is the last of domesticated trees to shoot, and only does so when the frosts are over; for that reason it is called the wisest of trees”.

2.  nomina falsa, ‘a false name’, reference to a supposed ‘etymology by opposites’: Latin morus ‘mulberry’ was equated with Greek μῶρος ‘fool’, but the tree was considered wise: see note 1.


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    Single Emblem View

    Section: LES ARBRES. View all emblems in this section.

    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [R3r p261]

    L’hierre.[1]

    L’hierre est un">ung arbre en verdeur triumphant,
    Duquel Bacchus feit don à Cisse enfant,[2]
    Errant gravit: ha grains d’or en couleur,
    Verd par dedans, tout le reste ha palleur.
    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [R3v p262] Poetes doncq’, en ont les chefz couvers,[3]
    Palles d’estude: en honneur tousjours verdz.

    Les Poetes se coronnent de Laurier
    & de L’hierre, qui tousjours verdoye
    par dedans, par dehors est palle, & por
    te bayes de couleur d’or, pour enseigne
    que ilz sont palles d’estude par dehors,
    & dedans leurs escriptz tousjours re-
    verdissans par eternel honneur, pre-
    cieux & illustres comme l’or.

    Notes:

    1.  The woodcut here is a fairly close, laterally inverted, copy of that used in the 1549 French edition.

    2.  For the story of Cissos, beloved of Bacchus, and his transformation into the ivy, see Nonnus, Dionysiaca, 12.188ff.

    3.  See Pliny, Natural History, 16.62.147: poets use the species with yellow berries for garlands.


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