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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [n2v p196]

Ignavi.

Good for nothing

XXI.

Ignavi aerdeolam stellarem[1] effingere servi
Et studia, & mores fabula prisca fuit,
Quae famulum Asteria[2] volucris sumpsisse figuram
Est commenta, fides sit penes historicos.
Degener hic veluti qui caevet in aëre falco est
Dictus ab antiquis vatibus ardelio.[3]

There was an old story to the effect that the little starred heron displays the activities and character of a good-for-nothing slave, a story which alleged that the slave Asterias took the form of a bird. Let the [natural] historians vouch for this. This sort of despicable person is like the kestrel quivering in one place in the air, a person called a fussing busybody by the ancient poets.

Notes:

1.  The ‘little starred heron’, which, according to the story, had once been human and a slave, was, because of its sluggish nature, called ocnus, i.e. ‘idleness’. Cf. Emblem 17 ([A56a017]). As it understood human speech, it hated to be called this, or ‘slave’. See Pausanias, 10.29.2; Aelian, De natura animalium 5.36; Aristotle, Historia animalium, 9.18.617.

2.  Asterias, ‘starred’, is the Greek name for ardea stellaris, possibly a bittern.

3.  ardelio: ‘a fussing busybody’. See Martial, Epigrams, 2.7.7.; 4.78.9: Phaedrus, Fables, 2.5.1. Cf. Erasmus, Adagia, 543, Callipides, on someone who expends a great deal of energy achieving nothing.


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    Single Emblem View

    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [G6r p107]

    AVARICE.

    Contre les Avaricieux.

    PROBLEME.

    Septitien riche entre tous marchans,
    Duquel nul plus n’ha de terres, & champs
    Perd en jeunant soy, & ses tables braves:
    Ne mange rien sinon bletes, & raves,
    Que semble cil que rend povre abondance?
    Ung asne? Oy. Il en ha l’evidence:
    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [G6v p108]Car l’asne porte, & viandes, & chairs dons,
    Et se nourrit de ronces, & chardons.[1]

    Bien asne est celluy qui abondant en bons
    fromens, vins, bestail, & volaille: mange pain
    moisy, L’ard rance, & boit vin tourné, ou
    despense.

    Notes:

    1.  Cf. Anthologia graeca 11.397, concerning a miser called Artemidorus.


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