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Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [G3v p102]

Mignardise.

Probleme.

Pourquoy dit on que l’Hermine, ou Musaigne
De mignardise, & delice est enseigne?[1]
Est ce pourtant quelle est chaude en nature,
Et de sa peau donne aulx Dames vesture?
Rat Sarmatie [=Sarmatic] , est Zebelin nommé[2]
Musc Arabic,[3] est parfum renommé.

Par la Musaigne, ou Hermine, & la Mar
tre Sebeline, & le Musc Arabic, de Ci-
vette qui sont bestes chaudes & odoran
tes tant vives en chair, que mortes en
peau, est denotée la delicieuse mignar-
dise, des dames en vestemens, & senteurs.

Notes:

1.  The white mouse was a proverbial example of the effeminate and the promiscuous. See the Suda s.v. mus, and Apostolius, Proverbs, 11,87, who also reports its sexual proclivities.

2.  ‘civet cat’, one source of musk, an ingredient in many perfumes. Sarmatia was the region north of the Black Sea.

3.  The words ‘mouse’ and ‘musk’ (late Latin muscus) are connected, from the mouse-shaped sac of the male animals which produce musk. Some plants have a musky smell. Muscus also means ‘moss’ - Arabia was famous for plants which produced aromatic gums (e.g. incense and nard).



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    Single Emblem View

    Link to an image of this page  Link to an image of this page  [P3r p229]

    La viçiosa delicadeza.

    Ottava rhima.

    Muestra el Armiño la delicadeza
    Viçiosa,[1] mas la causa no se dello.
    Por aventura es porque en su terneza
    Se halla luxuria? ò porque el tierno vello
    D’el orna de las damas la belleza?
    Llamaron à la Marta unos zibello,[2]
    Por ser de la luxuria afęminada
    (Como el Almizque) señal apropiada.

    Notes:

    1.  The ‘white mouse’ of the original Latin is here given as ‘armiño’ = ermine.

    2.  marta / zibello, ‘civet cat’, one source of musk, an ingredient in many perfumes.



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